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Wenger in the market for elite talent

Arsene Wenger says he is still on the lookout for a top quality striker to reinforce Arsenal’s forward line.

Arsenal go into Wednesday’s home clash with Liverpool four points behind fourth-placed Tottenham Hotspur, and 19 points back from English Premier League leaders Manchester United.

Wenger claimed he is satisfied with the threat posed by Theo Walcott, Gervinho, Olivier Giroud and Lukas Podolski, but said he will not stop looking for the right players to strengthen his side.

“As numbers we have enough – we have plenty of quality strikers,” he told reporters.

“We could do with top quality, one more, but you have to find him.

“When you speak about ‘anyone’ coming in, I could just go out and buy anyone just to
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give people hope.

“What is important is that you bring in players who can strengthen your team, or you do nothing and are strong enough to do nothing.

“That is what is important for us, to bring in a player who can strengthen the squad. ‘Anyone’ to me means exactly what today the modern game has become.”

Wenger said Arsenal have a better strike rate since Robin van Persie’s departure to Manchester United in the off-season, and insisted he will not sign players simply to silence his detractors.

“If you look at the number of goals we’ve scored, we’ve scored more than last year, when we had the best striker in the Premier League,” he said.

“That means the players who play have some qualities to score goals.”

“You have Walcott, you have Podolski with over 100 international caps. What do you do? You say, ‘just buy one.’

“You need to buy a player who can compete with them for a position in the team. I have to try not to get caught up in that in January. People expect us to buy someone of top quality.

“I have to be strong enough to resist or you have a player for four or five years who will never play a game, just because you bring in an average player who you know at the start is average.

“If I do that, I don’t do my job.”

Wed 30 January, 2013
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