Backpage roundup: Wenger to sign more players, Hill-Wood’s warning, Walcott’s contract and more

Wenger to Make More Signings

Arsene Wenger has revealed that Arsenal will be signing a few more players before the summer transfer window shuts close at the end of next month. (Guardian)

The Gunners have already secured the signatures of strikers Lukas Podolski and Olivier Giroud this summer and will likely have the injured midfield duo of Jack Wilshere and Abou Diaby fully fit before the start of the new season. Despite already having a number of options at his disposal, Wenger says that more arrivals should be expected due to the likely departure of the club’s talismanic striker and captain Robin van Persie.

Speaking at a press conference in Beijing, Wenger didn’t reveal the identities of his transfer targets but said: “You see I have come here to say as little as possible. I am ready to talk a lot, but not a lot about transfers, because it is a very fragile subject and a very secret subject. We bought Giroud and Podolski and I hope that we ‘bought’ Diaby and Wilshere too, who didn’t play at all last season. We will add Wilshere to the squad as soon as possible. But we are not at the end of it [transfers]. We will still bring players in.”

 

Hill-Wood Baffled By RVP’s Desire to Leave

Arsenal supremo Peter Hill-Wood has said that he can’t understand why club captain Robin van Persie wants to leave them. (ESPN)

The Dutch striker stunned the Gunners earlier this month by revealing that he won’t be renewing his contract with the club.

Arsenal don’t have a history of standing in the way of their want-away superstars and while Hill-Wood is likely to maintain that policy, he has made it clear that the club has no intention of letting van Persie leave in a cut-price deal.

In an interview with the Daily Star, Hill-Wood said: “He is a world-class player and we don’t want to give him away. If he is determined to leave that is up to him, but giving him away is not on our agenda.

“To be honest I do not understand him at all. I understood Cesc Fabregas wanting to go home to Barcelona last summer. I had sympathy with that. But I thought Robin was happy at Arsenal, especially after the season he had with us.

 

Ox Working On Defensive Game

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is working with Arsene Wenger these days to bring his defensive skills on par with his natural attacking talent. (Goal.com)

The Arsenal starlet, who impressed everyone during his debut season for the club last term, is determined to become an even better player than he currently is and therefore, he has identified defence as the aspect of his game where he should seek improvement.

In an interview with the Sun, Oxlade-Chamberlain is quoted as saying: “There are always lots of errors the boss speaks to me about. He wants to fine-tune my whole game and make me a better player. I think I have to be more assertive defensively to be a better player.

“I will hold my hands up for that. Defending is not a natural side of my game, but it is equally as important, particularly when you are playing in the Premier League. So I have to work on defending and I think I can improve on that — that is the main aim.

“I am really looking forward to the start of the season. I am taking it step-by-step and the first aim is to make sure I am fully fit for the start of the season, to get the best chance to get in the team. I know it won’t be easy. The new signings are really good while we have good talent here coming through, so if I do manage to get into the Arsenal team, I need to try and stay in there.

 

Arsenal Set To Make New Contract Offer to Walcott

Arsenal will make a new contract offer to Theo Walcott when he returns back to London from the club’s pre-season tour of Asia. (Mirror)

The England international just has one more year remaining on his £70,000-a-week deal but is looking for a significantly improved pay rate due to his vastly improved performances on the pitch last season.

The club’s reluctance to hand him a lucrative deal of his liking had led to speculation that he might be sold to Chelsea or Liverpool this summer but he recently rejected those rumours and reiterated his desire to stay at Emirates Stadium.

Arsenal’s chief negotiator Dick Law is now ready to talk numbers with Walcott and his agent, and talks are expected to take place next week when all the parties will be available in London.

 

Arteta in Awe of Cazorla’s Quality

Arsenal midfielder Mikel Arteta has hailed the quality of his fellow Spaniard and Malaga winger Santi Cazorla, who could soon became a Gunner in a £16million deal.

According to the latest media reports, Arsenal are on the verge of signing Cazorla and if the club manages to pull off the deal, Arteta says it would be a major coup.

In a recent interaction with the press, Arteta said: “I cannot talk about the actual situation but I can say that I know him as a player really well. And he’s a top, top player. He has got unbelievable quality and talent and that is all I can say.”

Coach Arsene Wenger agreed with the former Everton playmaker’s assessment of Cazorla and added: “I share the opinion of Mikel Arteta. Cazorla is a great player.”