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Arsenal can lay down a marker

Arsenal
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By ESPN Staff

Malouda eyes Brazilian swansong

France winger Florent Malouda has reiterated his desire to finish his career in Brazil and revealed he dreamed of playing for the Selecao when he was younger.

• Preview: France v Brazil

Malouda, 30, was born in French Guiana - an overseas region of France which borders Brazil - and believes that his homeland's close affiliation with Brazilian culture has blurred the lines of his nationality somewhat.

"I feel Brazilian," he told Le Parisien. "My wife is from Brazil, my children are half Brazilian and my in-laws are Brazilian. And then, Guiana and Brazil are very similar. There is a mix of cultures in Guiana with a strong Brazilian community.

"When I was little I dreamed of playing for Brazil and for a Brazilian club. Having grown up in Guiana, France was far away and I thought I had more chance of success over there."

Malouda's decision to move to France in search of his football fortune certainly paid off as he flourished at Guingamp and Lyon before moving to the Premier League with Chelsea in 2007.

And while he has continued to prove an influential presence in the Blues team, Malouda - who will line up for France in a friendly against Brazil on Wednesday - has previously indicated that he would like to return to South America one day.

''It would be great to play for a club like Flamengo or Vasco da Gama,'' Malouda said in October. ''It is something that I want to do in my life. 'I am going to finish my European career in Chelsea but my ambition is to finish at the highest level possible and play in the next World Cup in 2014. I would like to play some football in Brazil - the true country of football.''

And ahead of Les Bleus' midweek clash with Mano Menezes' Selecao, Malouda reiterated that a Brazilian swansong is still on his agenda.

"I would finish my career there," Malouda said. "It's a challenge I'd like. Playing in England and Brazil, two countries of football, it would be nice."

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