Saturday, November 18, 2017

Arsenal still active in transfer window, says Wenger

SoccerNews in English Premier League 29 Jul 2017

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Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger insists the club remain “active” in the transfer window despite concerns over the “huge inflation” in the market.

The Gunners have made just two signings since the end of last season, bringing in Alexandre Lacazette for a reported club-record fee of £52.7million and full-back Sead Kolasinac on a free transfer.

Wenger is rumoured to be keen on another raid of Ligue 1 before the market closes, with Arsenal linked with bids for Monaco duo Thomas Lemar and Kylian Mbappe.

The 67-year-old is concerned by the fees some clubs are demanding for their players, with Mbappe reportedly valued at €180m and Barcelona star Neymar said to be nearing a €222m move to Paris Saint-Germain, but he maintains Arsenal are still on the hunt for reinforcements.

“What’s next is to remain active,” he told Arsenal Player. “Not a lot [has] happened.

“I believe there are actually two ways to improve the team. First of all to improve the quality of what we do in training to improve the squad and improve the players we have, and secondly to bring more top-level players in. 

“The difficulty is to bring top-level players in because you pay a huge amount of money for very normal players at the moment. As well, all the big clubs are chasing the same players and that provokes huge inflation. Maybe this will be the first time we [football clubs] pay over £200m, maybe over £300m with Neymar and around £200m with Mbappe. 

“So there is a huge inflation. But we are active, we are working hard and I think we have done well with Kolasinac, we have done well with Lacazette and we are continuing to work.”

Arsenal’s previous record signing was Mesut Ozil, who arrived from Real Madrid on the final day of the window in August 2013 for a reported fee of £42.5m.

Wenger expects plenty of transfers to be completed in the final days of next month and made it clear that he will be “on alert” for any sudden opportunities.

“There’s the usual acceleration in the final part of August,” he said. “But I think you have always to be on alert every day, because a good opportunity might turn up. 

“Sometimes people you are after for a long time are not available and suddenly they become available. So you have always to be on alert. That’s what we do.”

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