Wenger gives latest on Alexis and Ozil futures

Arsène Wenger’s post-match press conference was once more dominated by Alexis and Mesut Ozil’s futures.

The manager was asked a number of questions about our duo, and you can scroll down to see all the quotes:

on whether he is happy for Mesut to go into the final year of his contract…
Yes, I think in the future you will see that more and more. Players going to the end of their contracts. Why? Because transfers become so high, even for normal players, that you will see more and more players going to the end of their contract because nobody will want to pay the amount of money that is demanded and I am convinced that in the next 10 years that will become usual.

on whether it’s an issue that five or six players are in their final year of contract…
Not at all. I think it’s an ideal situation.

on why it’s an ‘ideal situation’…
Everybody has to perform.

on whether Alexis is in the country…
No, he is not back.

on whether Alexis is fit to travel…
He comes back on Monday night, yes.

on whether he thinks Alexis will miss the start of the season…
I don’t know, you have to assess his physical state.

on why it’s an ‘ideal situation’ for players to go into their final year of contract…
When you are a football player you perform until the last day of your contract. What does it change that you have two years or one year to go? You go out on the football pitch, you want to play and to do well. I don’t understand. Do you really think that you sit in the dressing room before the game and you think ‘Oh, I have only one year to go - I will not play well today’? Where does that come from? When you’re a football player you want to go out and play and do as well as you can. What has that to do with the length of your contract? It’s a bit amazing. How long do you know that you will work for your company? As long as you work, you do well.

on whether players are negotiating a move away…
No. Even if it happens, it doesn’t matter. You do well with what you do. I am amazed that you are surprised by that. It looks normal to me.

on Wiltord and Kanu barely playing in the final year of their contracts in 2004…
Every situation is different. Sometimes you have players who run out of contract because you do not want to extend them. That’s a bit different. Nobody knows if Sanchez will not extend his contract here. The performance on the day does not depend on the length of the contract. If that was true, you would sign everybody for 20 years and then you would be happy. What is important is that you perform when you go out there. I would rather have a longer conversation about that because I would like to have a good look back at all the contract that we’ve signed. I’m not convinced that the length of the contract has any impact on the performance of any player.

on Arsenal fans experiencing this with Wenger’s contract last year…
That’s different. My situation can impact the players’ situation in their minds. Any individual player does not impact the situation of all the players.

on fans worrying that Alexis will leave…
What can I do about that? One day he will go and Arsenal will go on. We will all go one day and Arsenal will hopefully go on.

on whether he thinks Alexis will stay…
Yes of course. How many times have I told you that? 

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