By Chris Harris

The prospect of players earning £200,000 per week will not put people off football, according to Arsène Wenger.

The Arsenal manager takes his team to Eastlands on Sunday to face a Manchester City side that could feature Yaya Toure, reportedly the first Premier League player to pick up that landmark wage.

The days of star-name footballers getting on the bus or the Tube - let alone drinking in the pub with supporters - are long gone. Indeed, some feel there is a serious disconnect between the players and the fans who effectively pay their salaries.

So will wages upwards of £200,000 exacerbate that situation? Wenger thinks not.

"No [supporters won't be put off] because it would have turned them off at £100,000 [a week]," he said.

"I believe that every supporter has as well been a football player and he loves footballers and when he watches a game he does not put in his mind when he has missed a pass how much money the player makes. He just wants to see a good pass.

"He wants to see something that he could not do and as well have the feeling that his son can be one of these players."

When it comes to the thorny issue of whether any £200,000-a-week player can be ‘worth it', Wenger remains neutral. But he points out that it is not just football that attracts eye-popping salaries.

"I have not to be involved in the philosophical debate about that because I am much more realistic," he said. "I have to manage a club and make sure that what comes in goes out and not more. After, what is decent and not decent it's not my debate and not my judgment because if I start to be like that I will stop this job.

"After that the rest is more a moral debate of the society, how much can a person earn in life? You have people that take billions of pounds on petrol and they have done nothing special in their life. A football player is somebody who has to show elite performances.

"Before you attack completely football players, there are some other areas in our society where I'm not sure they have to turn up with as much talent as a football player does."

Copyright 2017 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to as the source
22 Oct 2010