Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger quizzed on ‘beneficial’ Manchester United bidding war for Alexis Sanchez but denies Malcom interest
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Arsene Wenger held his weekly press conference at London Colney on Friday. Read on for the latest on Alexis Sanchez contract negotiations, Manchester United’s interest and his views on possible new signing Malcom.
On Alexis’ attitude
Look, I don’t question Alexis’ passion. When he’s on the football pitch he wants to win, he’s committed. I had many conversations about him and we talked about the fact that people are always observing you with a microscope when you’re on a short-term contract, but I’ve never questioned his professional attitude when he’s on the football pitch. Alexis wants to win. When he shows frustration, it’s because we didn’t win.
Has Wenger has had any conversations with Alexis recently?
Yes, yes of course.
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What was said?
That he is always fully committed. He never had any problem through his attitude or his commitment.
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On Alexis’ form compared to last season…
But that is not necessarily linked with the length of your contract. That can happen even if you have 10 years to go.
Are Manchester United interested in signing Alexis?
Look, honestly I cannot tell you much more at the moment about this situation. Nothing is really concrete at the moment.
Is there any truth in it?
You conclude that. You could say that at the moment. It’s not that I don’t want to inform you, I don’t want to give you wrong information and at the moment I must say nothing is decided one way or the other.
On whether a bidding war for Alexis be beneficial for Arsenal?
A bidding war is always beneficial to the club who can take advantage of it. We are not in that. I maintain what I’ve said many times. Normally, he should stay here until the end of the season but we’ll see.
On whether the fans have had enough of the Alexis saga?
I don’t know. What the fans want is for Arsenal Football Club to win. That’s what we all want. The only way to please the fans is to win the next game. They care more about the results than individual players.
On whether Malcom would be a replacement for Alexis?
He’s a good player but at the moment nothing is happening there. We are not on that case at the moment.
On whether he wants to avoid an Alexis-like situation in the future?
No I don’t regret because at the end of the day all you can access to the demands of the players or you can’t and if you cannot, they don’t extend their contracts it’s as simple as that. It’s kind of a mathematical situation and that you cannot change.
On whether Alexis is replaceable?
Replaceable in the way that we find exactly the same player, certainly not, but there’s always a way to find a different balance. Alexis is an exceptional football player, he’s a world-class player and if that happens we have to find a different balance in the team.
On whether he didn’t sell Alexis in the summer because they had no replacement?
On if a replacement is not brought in, Alexis will not go?
You sum it up very well.
On whether he wants a quick resolution?
Yes of course.
On whether he is tired of talking about it?
It’s not the fatigue factor, it’s just I cannot tell you what I don’t know and so I don’t want to give information that I cannot back up after because it will come to me and you will say why did you say that and rightly so, so I like to be a bit vague and use my whole experience of press conferences not to talk things that I cannot back up after.