Wenger: Suarez key in transfer plans
ESPN FC: Arsenal's transfer angst
Luis Suarez may still be the key figure in Arsenal’s summer transfer plans despite the proposed move to the Emirates Stadium faltering late in the transfer window.
Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger conceded his bid to sign Suarez from Liverpool was doomed to fail earlier this week, but has now admitted his hopes of landing Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema may depend on his former target securing a move to the Bernabeu.
When asked whether he felt Suarez moving to Real Madrid was crucial to his hopes of landing the France international, a guarded Wenger offer this response: “That's part of the fact you need three agreements for anybody,” he stated.
“It’s true that it is sometimes connected with other clubs, but we have to accept that.”
However, if Madrid do lure Suarez to the Spanish capital, it would be another blow against Wenger’s ability to court a highly-rated player into a fruitful relationship with the club.
“That can happen (a players joins another club). You've certainly tried to go out with a girl but find she has chosen someone else. You don't commit suicide,” he said.
“I don't want to speak in detail about what has happened. One day, why not?
“But now it's not the moment to talk about that. I just said it's over. We have to get on with our lives.”
Meanwhile, Wenger claimed he has a queue of players lining up to sign for the club, as he looks to make good on his promises to spend big in the final week of the transfer window.
Wenger stated he has been frustrated by his failure to land a host of top targets this summer, yet he insists the desire of some of the game’s leading lights to join the Gunners burns brighter than ever.
However, the Frenchman reigned in the temptation to solely spend big on a marquee player.
“I can understand the interest in these types of signings, but it's five per cent of the game,” he said.
“For 95 per cent of the time it's something more - the spirit inside the club, the values of the club. But today you feel that it is only about that (big signings).
“I'm not against splashing out, but football is not only about that.
“(But) many players want to join us and all the players who have been here want to come back here. It’s not because they like my face.
“They want to come here because of the way we treat people and for the football we play, or try to play. Unfortunately we’ve not always managed to do it, but they find something here they want to know again.
“So when they go somewhere else and many, many, many players, believe me, ask me to come back. They all want to come back. I don’t know if it is Arsenal or England, but there is something about it.”
Jens Lehmann, Sol Campbell and Thierry Henry have all enjoyed second spells at Arsenal after initial glories under Wenger’s command and now it seems as if Mathieu Flamini will be the next to indulge in a Gunners comeback as he edges closer to securing a deal with the north London club.
Flamini left in less than harmonious circumstances back in 2008, but Wenger seems open to the prospect of him re-signing for the club in the coming days after watching him train with his first team squad.
“He works very hard, he has always been a very dedicated player. He has the required (fitness) level. He doesn’t come from a small club. He has played here, and in Milan, and in Marseille.”
“Does he (Flamini) regret leaving? You should ask him this question, it would be better. I didn’t ask him that. Would he be ready to come back here? Certainly, yes.”
Information from the Press Association was used in this report.