Arsene Wenger heads into Arsenal’s vital Premier League game with Stoke City tomorrow knowing a win is crucial but that he has another goal in sight too.
For while the Gunners’ look to maintain their position in the frame to challenge for the Premier League title, Wenger knows that with each passing game the stock of two players in particular rises.
The Emirates boss has been made acutely aware that both Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil, Arsenal’s two outstanding players by far, will have just one year remaining on their current deals when the summer arrives.
But Wenger has never been one to simply throw money at players negotiating contracts and, despite supporters imploring him to hand over the pay packets asked for by the Chile striker and the German playmaker, he very much retains a certain degree of integrity in such dealings.
And the Frenchman has moved to state his and the club’s position on the situation. He said:
“Arsenal is a big club,. It is not one or two players who will make the difference to the club. The importance is that we are today in a financial position that is strong, that was not the case before.”
“That means as well we are in a position where we can plan our future, and do what we want to do. What is important is always to take care of the values of the club, and the identity of the club, and not to depend too much on one or two players. The history of Arsenal is bigger than that.”
“In every single club, at some stage, they have lost big players. Or they had big players without knowing. Or things like that happened everywhere. Every club is full of regrets and full of decisions. What matters is the globality of the decisions.”