Chimbonda 'very proud' to have played for Wigan

May 15, 2006

Pascal Chimbonda has claimed he could have left Wigan four months ago but opted to stay instead.

The former Bastia full-back is a surprise inclusion in France's World Cup squad after handing in a transfer request on the final day of the season.

Tottenham's £3million bid for his services has been rejected and the defender's future remains unclear.

Chimbonda said: 'I would like to thank (Wigan boss) Paul Jewell and my team-mates for helping me this season.

'I am very proud to play for Wigan, playing for them has given me this chance.

'I had the chance to leave in January but opted to stay and help them in their first season in the Premiership.

'It has paid off, both for me and the club.'

Chimbonda added on skysports.com: 'I am proud to be called up by France and am looking forward to playing at the World Cup finals.'