By Richard Clarke

Arsène Wenger admits he is “desperate” to keep Andrey Arshavin at Emirates Stadium.

Recently the media have linked the Russian midfielder with a move away but, speaking at Friday’s press conference, his manager revealed there had been no approaches and none would be welcome.

“We have had no contact,” said Wenger. “As far as I know, I believe he and his wife are happy in London but what is very important as well is that I am very happy with him.”

The Frenchman admits that Arshavin is suffering a slight dip in form. It was suggested that maybe this has prompted this speculation.

“As soon as a player doesn’t play fantastically well, he is criticised,” said Wenger. “We all know that.

“I personally believe he is a great player – he is going through a period where it is more difficult at the moment. But he works very hard in training – his attitude is fantastic and I am desperate to keep him.

“He has played almost every single game since the start of the season – he has played for his national team as well and he is physically a bit less fresh. But he will come back stronger than ever because he works very hard in training.”

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14 Jan 2011