By Chris Harris

Arsène Wenger's dislike for the January transfer window is well-documented.

Not only does the Frenchman tire of the endless speculation which greets every New Year, he also believes the system is flawed because it handicaps those who cannot compete with the richest clubs in the land.

Wenger believes the Premier League has the power to revamp its own transfer rules and he would prefer an 'all or nothing' solution in which the transfer window is open - or closed - for the entire season.

"[If the transfer window was closed all season] at least you know if you make a mistake during the summer you are punished and you have to stand up for it during the whole season," he said.

"I speak completely open because I do not want you to think I am having a go at Man City, but Man City are in a position where they fight against relegation. But they have so many financial resources that of course they will not fight against relegation. They will fight maybe for European places.

"So the other clubs who fight with them, not to be relegated, have a big handicap because they do not have the same resources in the middle of the season. But everybody could understand at the start of the season you have exactly what you have then.

"Of course [the Premier League can change it]. I don't think that Uefa and Fifa will be against that. You could still buy a player and play him abroad, but not be capable to play him in your championship."

"I'm not a fanatic for it [the system I propose] but, if you ask me what is my preference I say 'Yes, completely closed or completely open'."

Wenger has long argued the case for clubs to operate within their natural resources instead of living beyond their means. But he admits that his preferred system is little more than a pipedream in the modern age.

"Basically you could judge really the managers if you say to the 20 clubs in the league 'You have £20million, show me what you can do, everybody.'," said Wenger.

"Then you can judge. Give everybody the same resources, go out in the world, make your team, come back and show me who is the best. But it will never happen."

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
30 Jan 2009