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Extra: Wenger on Diaby and title race

Abou Diaby on his return to the starting lineup

Read some extra quotes from Arsène Wenger's pre-match press conference. For more headlines, visit our Digest page.

on Diaby's future...By me, yes [a decision has been taken]. I had a chat with him and told him how I can envisage the future. He has to make a decision. Of course he understands completely that he has to perform and to show that he can be present on a consistent way. I will see where we go from there. I wouldn't like to go into details, we have to meet again to see where we go from what I told him. It has to be linked a little bit with his presence.

on Arteta and Rosicky's futures...Yes [I am confident Arteta's future will be resolved]. Same as for Rosicky as well, I am confident [something will be resolved].

"Of course he understands completely that he has to perform and to show that he can be present on a consistent way"

Wenger on Diaby

on hopes of winning the league…We have the aspiration to win the next game and that’s quite good enough. After that, win the next one.

on it being mathematically possible…Whatever is mathematically possible you have to try to achieve but that doesn’t depend only on us. What does only depend on us in the final run is our performances and our results, so let’s focus on that. After that if everything goes for us, you never know, but you can only master your own performances so let’s focus on that and be realistic and continue to earn the right to win the games. That’s what we want.

on Raheem Sterling...Raheem Sterling is a top player, everybody in the country knows that now. He is a very important player for Liverpool of course. I don’t want to interfere in [reports about Sterling's future], especially 48 hours before the game. That’s down to Liverpool, I don’t want to interfere in that. It’s not my problem. I do not want to speak about any move. We are not in a transfer period, we are in front of a big game. I respect Liverpool and I do not want to go into any supposed move for any of their players.

on rumours of a move for Paulo Dybala...Ask him [the Palermo president] to show you the offer. [There is no interest], not at all.

on whether Gerrard is one of the best he’s faced…Yes, of course. For long, long periods, when Liverpool were in trouble, everyone looked at Steven Gerrard [as if to say] ‘do something for us’ and you can say that nine times out of 10, he did it. He’s a huge player and I think what I like as well and what you don’t see anymore a lot, he has shown a great loyalty. Through his whole career, he played at Liverpool and it’s very difficult to see now because he had the calibre to play anywhere at any big club and remained loyal and faithful to Liverpool. I have a big respect for that.on what made Gerrard so good…When you look at his qualities, it’s difficult to see what he hasn’t got in the locker. He was quick, he had a good long pass, he had a good technique, he could score goals. He’s a dream midfielder, so overall I believe he had every single quality that you dream to have when you play in midfield.

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