Liverpool v Arsenal: Gunners will not return with bid for Luis Suarez in the summer, plus Arsene Wenger claims he never wanted to replace Olivier Giroud with the Uruguay international

Gunners had a £40m plus £1 bid for the striker rejected last July

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The Independent Football

Arsenal may have had an offer of £40m plus £1 rejected for Liverpool striker Luis Suarez over the summer, but Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger today claimed that it was never his intention to replace his French striker Olivier Giroud with Suarez, and that he will not try and sign the Uruguayan again in the summer.

Giroud has been the focus of the Gunners' attack this season, scoring 10 goals and creating six in the Premier League.

"[The Suarez bid] was not to replace Olivier Giroud," Wenger claimed. "We never wanted to replace Giroud, we always had complete confidence in him. I'm not surprised he is doing well this season."

"[Suarez] was never our player. It is just a situation that did not come off and that is it."

Asked if he would be likely to look again at a deal for Suarez this summer, Wenger said: "At the moment, no."

The Gunners' £40m plus £1 bid was made last July in the false hope that it had triggered a release clause in the 27-year-old's contract, it didn't, and was laughed off by Reds' owner John W Henry - who memorably responded to the offer by tweeting: "What do you think they're smoking over there at Emirates?"

Olivier Giroud has been in fine form for Arsenal this season

Despite Arsenal chief executive Ivan Gazidis stressing the board were confident an announcement on Wenger's new contract would soon be forthcoming, the French coach maintains there is as yet no movement on tieing up the formalities.

Defenders Per Mertesacker and Bacary Sagna are also in talks over new deals, as is midfielder Tomas Rosicky.

Wenger said: "The main news is Bacary Sagna, that we expect (to sign) and a few other players, but there is no (fresh) news there."