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lasalaFootballers are pretty keen on opening restaurants. There's Gary Nevile and Ryan Giggs' Cafe Football in Westfield Stratford (which is a LOT better than you'd expect). Rio Ferdinand owns the successful Rosso in Manchester. And over in Europe Former Real Madrid's Clarence Seedorf owns a Japanese restaurant in Milan called Fingers which is supposed to be pretty darned good.

Now we hear that a bunch of big name footballers have clubbed together to bring a swanky Spanish restaurant chain to sunny Chigwell. La Sala, which has a flagship restaurant in Puerto Banus, is being backed by Arsenal's Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and the former Birmingham City captain Stephen Carr among others.

It's the first restaurant outside Spain for the La Sala group. The menu's not finalised yet but is expected to be pretty similar to the Marbella restaurant which features an international range of dishes - everything from chicken satay to prawns piri piri and sushi platters.

The restaurant will open on Chigwell Road, Woodford Green where the White Hart Inn used to be. In charge of the opening is James Horler (who built the La Tasca chain). "We will be looking to roll out a second site within 12 months, with a third to follow, maybe in West London," he said.

La Sala opens mid-September at 692-694 Chigwell Road, Woodford Green, Essex IG8 8AL. For more information follow them on Twitter @lasalauk

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