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Patrick Vieira has no desire to leave Arsenal, according to a close friend of the player.

Chantal Stanley, who has known Vieira since he arrived in England, believes he is happy at Highbury.

“If he goes it’s not because he has asked to go. If he wanted to he would have gone already,” she told BBC Sport.

“I do not believe it is his wish to leave the UK.

“I know Patrick Vieira very well. I know the good life he has here, I know how highly in his esteem he holds Arsene Wenger and how much he loves working with him.

“He’s captain of the team and he has a special relationship with the fans and he appreciates their love for him.

“His fiance is happy in the UK as well. I just cannot imagine him leaving Arsenal.”

Reports have suggested the 28-year-old Vieira is tempted by the money on offer at Real.

Meanwhile, reports in Spain claim that Madrid will make a renewed effort to secure the French midfielder ahead of this week’s registration deadline for the Champions League preliminary rounds.

Madrid have been encouraged by reports that Arsenal’s vice-chairman David Dein stating that the club would not accept “less than 35m euros”. That is significantly less than the £30m figure suggested a fortnight ago.

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