Arsenal transfer activity will be about quality not quantity says Arsene Wenger

 

Arsene Wenger is prepared to gamble on the right player this summer when he targets quality over quantity to strengthen Arsenal's squad.

Wenger today denied that Germany striker Lukas Podolski is close to joining the Gunners in an £11million deal having undergone a medical.

But the Arsenal boss admitted he is ready to scour the transfer market in his quest for high-quality additions to the squad.

"Quantity-wise we will not do a lot. Quality-wise certainly, and we will take a gamble if we find top, top quality of course," he said.

"The number of the squad is 25. We have many players out on loan and we have not had Jack Wilshere or Abou Diaby for the whole season.

"These players will be back and that means number and quality wise we are strong because we are now in the position we are in without these players."

Wenger shed little light on the timing of Podolski's arrival and stressed he would like to avoid the final-day flurry of activity that marked Arsenal's transfer business last summer.

"Nothing is done. It could happen soon, it could happen later, I don't know," he said.

"Last year was terrible for us because we finished on the 31st August at 11.55pm and we do not want to repeat that."

Wenger spoke at length on Fabrice Muamba, Bolton's former Arsenal striker who is making a remarkable recover from the cardiac arrest he suffered last Saturday.

Muamba was sold to Birmingham in 2007 after spending two seasons at the Emirates Stadium and Wenger insisted the 23-year-old midfielder always possessed a fighting spirit.

"Over the years we have stayed in touch with Fabrice. Against us, he was always very keen to prove that we made a mistake in letting him go.

"He was always outstanding against us and I hope he will do that again soon.

"Hopefully one day we will have the joy to see him on the football pitch again.

"It was obvious he was a fighter. Technically he was behind when he arrived here.

"But when you looked at him, you would think 'oh, there is something to work on here' and that was his huge determination and desire.

"I let him go for two reasons. The first one is that he had big players in front of him and it was very difficult to take them out and put Fabrice in at the time.

"And the second reason is that he is so highly motivated that I felt he was ready to play and needed to play.

"There always comes a moment in the career of a player that you play him now or you let him go.

"I let him go for his benefit. He understood that very well."

Arsenal are seeking their seventh successive Barclays Premier League win when they host Aston Villa tomorrow.

They supplanted Tottenham in third place with their 1-0 victory over Everton on Wednesday night and Wenger believes the battle for Champions League football is intensifying.

"Third is better than fourth, but if you have no choice, you take fourth and the opportunity. Let's see how it goes now," he said.

"I believe Newcastle are still in the fight, as are Tottenham and Chelsea. Liverpool are maybe too far off, but you never know."

PA

Arts and Entertainment
The Doctor and Clara have their first real heart to heart since he regenerated in 'Deep Breath'
TV
News
people
Life and Style
Apple showed no sign of losing its talent for product launches with the new, slightly larger iPhone 6 making headlines
techSecurity breaches and overhyped start-ups dominated a year in which very little changed (save the size of your phone)
News
The official police photograph of Dustin Diamond taken after he was arrested in Wisconsin
peopleDownfall of the TV star charged with bar stabbing
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

Who remembers that this week we enter the 150th anniversary year of the end of the American Civil War, asks Robert Fisk
Downfall of Dustin 'Screech' Diamond, the 'Saved By The Bell' star charged with bar stabbing

Scarred by the bell

The downfall of the TV star charged with bar stabbing
Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Security breaches and overhyped start-ups dominated a year in which very little changed (save the size of your phone)
Cuba's golf revolution: But will the revolutionary nation take 'bourgeois' game to its heart?

Will revolutionary Cuba take 'bourgeois' golf to its heart?

Fidel Castro ridiculed the game – but now investment in leisure resort projects is welcome
The Locked Room Mysteries: As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor Otto Penzler explains the rules of engagement

The Locked Room Mysteries

As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor explains the rules of engagement
Ed Richards: Parting view of Ofcom chief. . . we hate jokes on the disabled

Parting view of Ofcom chief. . . we hate jokes on the disabled

Bad language once got TV viewers irate, inciting calls to broadcasting switchboards. But now there is a worse offender, says retiring head of the media watchdog, Ed Richards
A look back at fashion in 2014: Wear in review

Wear in review

A look back at fashion in 2014
War with Isis: The West needs more than a White Knight

The West needs more than a White Knight

Despite billions spent on weapons, the US has not been able to counter Isis's gruesome tactics, says Patrick Cockburn
Return to Helmand: Private Davey Graham recalls the day he was shot by the Taliban

'The day I was shot by the Taliban'

Private Davey Graham was shot five times during an ambush in 2007 - it was the first, controversial photograph to show the dangers our soldiers faced in Helmand province
Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Many flyers are failing to claim compensation to which they are entitled, a new survey has found
The stories that defined 2014: From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions

The stories that defined 2014

From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations

Disaster looming? Now you know where to head...

Which British city has become the first to be awarded special 'resilience' status by the UN?
Finally, a diet that works: Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced

Finally, a diet that works

Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced
Say it with... lyrics: The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches

Say it with... lyrics

The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches
Professor Danielle George: On a mission to bring back the art of 'thinkering'

The joys of 'thinkering'

Professor Danielle George on why we have to nurture tomorrow's scientists today