Kolo Toure opens up on infamously slide-tackling Arsene Wenger

Former Arsenal defender Kolo Toure has spoken about the infamous moment when he connected with a nasty slide tackle on Arsene Wenger.

Toure, who spent seven years with the club, first joined the Gunners back in 2002. The youngster would go on to form a formidable partnership with Sol Campbell during his stay in North London, but at the beginning of his tenure, he clearly had a point to prove.

Kolo Toure – utterly fearless

Ray Parlour previously told the story of the challenges Toure put in during a trial game. From Henry to Bergkamp and beyond, nobody was safe.

He also mentioned that Kolo had put in a hard tackle on none other than Arsene Wenger. Now, we have confirmation from Toure himself thanks to his interview with FourFourTwo.

“I spent two weeks there and, as you know, I put that tackle in on Arsene Wenger,” he said. “But, you know, I think that slide tackle changed my career. 

“It showed the manager just how much I wanted to be successful, and how much I wanted to become a professional footballer. That’s how he took it. All the players were laughing and I was in shock. 

“I thought they were going to get rid of me there and then but Arsene is an intelligent guy. 

“He only saw a young African boy who was keen to impress him, and gave me that opportunity to express myself and show what I was capable of doing.”

There are plenty of ways to make a statement and slide tackling the manager is certainly one of them.

That performance alone may not have been enough to convince the club that he could be a bonafide star, but his outings on the pitch certainly justified Wenger’s trust in him.

Almost 20 years later, we’d argue things turned out pretty well for the defender.

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