Same old Wenger? Arsenal boss suggests focus is on developing existing players

Arsenal fans may be worried to hear their manager's latest comments.

Arsenal's official website runs an interview with Arsene Wenger, positively spun to suggest he is 'keen to add to his squad'.

But reading his quotes it appears he is preparing for the eventuality that the Gunners strike out in their pursuit of top targets.

Gonzalo Higuain moved on this week, and Luis Suarez remains very much in Liverpool's clutches.

Wenger insinuates that his priority is to focus on existing players at the club.

He said: "What has changed recently is that in Europe, countries like France have bought some very talented players who would two or three years ago all have come to England. That makes the chase for talent very difficult.

“What we want is not a [big] name but a good player. The name is less important. What is important is the quality of the player. We want as many top players as we can but we have to focus on the players [already here] and develop them as well.

“In midfield you have plenty of candidates - there's a big fight in midfield. Sagna has settled in well as a centre back. We have a strong squad. We are there on the market trying to strengthen our team.”

He clearly hints there will be no new centre-back, with Bacary Sagna now a clear option in there; and possibly no new defensive midfielder - enthused by the various options he has in the middle.

Wenger does state they are looking, simply that Arsenal are preparing for the eventuality of being unsuccessful in pursuit of top targets.

He has always been an advocate of not buying for the sake of it, a mistake Manchester City made last summer with a late deadline day splurge on Maicon, Javi Garcia and Scott Sinclair.

But it is the talk about focusing on existing players and developing them into better players which will concern fans.

It is the sort of talk which has fans holding their heads in their hands, for Arsenal finished well off the pace last season in the Premier League and no amount of player development is going to suddenly change that without new faces.

The good news is the manager confirms Arsenal are actively trying for quality players - as seen by the Suarez pursuit this week, but at the same time in getting his excuses in early and in blaming other European clubs, when Arsenal and the Premier League's finances are healthier than ever simply comes across as a bit of a cop out.

What do you think of Wenger's latest comments? 

image: © wonker

Register for ARSENAL team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch