Backpage roundup: Inter Milan want Sagna, Arteta happy to sit deep, Podolski criticised, Yennaris’ dream and more

Inter Interested in Unsettled Sagna

Bacary Sagna is a transfer target for Italian giants Inter Milan, according to a report recently published by the Daily Mail.

The Serie A club is expected to move for the Arsenal right-back if he fails to sign a new contract with his current employers.

Despite moaning in the press about Arsenal’s summer sales and subsequently receiving an earful by coach Arsene Wenger, Sagna is in the Gunners’ long-term plan, and they want him to extend his contract with them. However, if talks between the two parties don’t bear any fruit, then Inter will try and take him to Italy.

 

Wenger Happy With Yennaris’ ‘Fantastic Story’

Arsene Wenger has highlighted the progress Nico Yennaris has made in recent years and said that the Arsenal starlet’s footballing development is a clear proof that hard work and dedication can turn dreams into reality.

Yennaris, who used to be a mascot for the Gunners until 2000, is in contention for a place in Wenger’s matchday squad for their Wednesday night’s League Cup game against Coventry.

He joined the Arsenal academy as a seven-year-old in 2001 and was handed his first ever professional contract in the summer of 2010. He played his first senior game for Arsenal last season and Wenger is happy with the way his career is progressing.

Earlier today, the Arsenal manager told Arsenal Player:He has a good chance to be on the pitch on Wednesday night, so that is a fantastic story. Dreams do come true sometimes when you really want it and have been lucky as well.

“First of all you must really want it and Nico is one of these guys who has that. He is ready to give himself a chance with full commitment. Nico is a fantastic player, but also has an excellent attitude – his is a good example to follow for all of the fans who will turn up on Wednesday night.”

 

Walcott Wants To Emulate Thierry Henry at Arsenal

Theo Walcott has said that not only does he want to remain an Arsenal player but he also dreams of emulating his idol Thierry Henry at Emirates Stadium.

In a recent interview with ESPN, the 23-year-old forward seemed to suggest that his reluctance to sign a new deal with Arsenal is not because of money issues but due to the fact that he wants coach Arsene Wenger to play him as a striker rather than a winger.

Walcott said: “I want to be an Arsenal legend. Thierry joined the club when he was 22 and I want to become an Arsenal legend like him, playing up front as well, which is a big factor for me. I’ve played on the right wing and had the opportunity to play up front a bit more so I think it’s about time.”

“I’m not the sort of person who’s influenced by money. I always make my decisions based on football and only football. Hopefully, something can be sorted out. I’ll just wait for the club to get back to us now and go from there. It’s a slow process. My last contract took over six months to happen. Hopefully, it can be sorted out. I’ve never said I wanted to go, I’ve always wanted to stay.”

 

Arteta ‘Totally Happy’ With New Defensive Role

Mikel Arteta has said that he is happy despite being deployed in an unfamiliar deeper position by coach Arsene Wenger so far this season.

The Spanish playmaker has played his entire career as an advanced attacking midfielder but was moved back a little to accommodate his compatriot Santi Cazorla. While sitting deep and helping the defense is not his natural style of play, he says that he is happy to do the sacrifice for the good of the team.

In an interview with Arsenal.com, Arteta is quoted as saying: “It is a big transition but it is more a mental thing. The boss is convinced that is the best thing for the team and I am too, so let’s do it. If it works, and in games like that where you probably think you need a more physical presence but you still create and are able to match the physical ability and the way they play, it reinforces your belief. I am totally happy that is a good way to play.”

 

Podolski Criticised for His Low Work Rate and Poor Attitude

Former Germany and Borussia Monchengladbach manager Berti Vogts has accused Arsenal striker Lukas Podolski of having a poor attitude and work rate for his country, although he is confident that coach Arsene Wenger will improve that side of his game.

The 65-year-old, who now coaches the Azerbaijan national team, criticised Podolski when talking about Germany’s semi-final defeat against Italy at the Euro 2012 in a recent interview.

Vogts said: “It is always the defence that gets criticised. But the defence starts with Podolski. When he loses the ball he must start running back once in a while. Now at Arsenal, he has a manager under whom he has to work really hard in training. Now he gets educated as a professional.”

He then described the Poland-born hitman as an ‘extraordinary player’ before saying: “[He had] too many friends in Cologne and I hope they stayed at home.”