Zambian star snubs Emirates Stadium switch to join Premier League’s bottom club.
Arsenal have been dealt an embarrassing blow after Zambian defender Stoppila Sunzu opted to join Reading rather than the Gunners, reports L’Equipe.
The 23-year-old, who currently plays for TP Mazembe, claimed he was due to join the Gunners after Zambia’s participation in next month’s African Cup of Nations.
“I will be travelling to England to sign a deal with Arsenal after the friendly game against Tanzania,” said Sunzu earlier this week.
“I don’t know the details of the deal yet because I have not discussed with both Arsenal and TP Mazembe. However, I spoke to Arsenal Manager Arsene Wenger who assured me that I would not be going to London for trials but to discuss personal terms and possibly sign a contract.”
But Sunzu has now told his country’s media that he has decided to reject a switch to North London in favour of joining lowly Reading, who currently sit bottom of the Premier League.
The centre-half nearly signed for the Royals as an 18-year-old in 2007, after impressing in the under-20 FIFA World Cup.
But the move did not materialise due to problems attaining a work permit.
Sunzu is among the the most decorated players in Africa, having won the Zambian Super League with Zanaco, the Congolese Super League, the CAF Champions League and the CAF Super Cup with TP Mazembe before winning the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations with Zambia.
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