Press conference

Wenger on Man City, Newcastle, Ozil, systems

As usual, Arsène Wenger’s pre-match press conference covered a variety of topics.

The manager was asked about Manchester City and if they can be stopped, how he expects Newcastle to line up on Saturday, the latest on Mesut Ozil and whether he’ll persist with three or four at the back.

Here’s what he had to say:

on whether City are uncatchable…
Look, we had no petrol but ideas, they have petrol and ideas, so that makes it more efficient and overall yes they are like that, so everybody expects and projects that they will last. Why not? It can happen, but there is still a long way to go. At the moment I think everything goes for them inside the games, but maybe as well they have the quality to turn it in their favour.

on petrol and ideas…
They have resources… [Money?] yes. Money and quality is what I wanted to say and in their management and players they have everything that is needed to be successful. It’s still not easy, they still have to respect that achievement.

on if Ozil etc will stay in January…
Yeah. I can tell you a global answer: yes.

01:00

Check out some of our best goals at home against Newcastle United

on if he thinks they will all stay…
They will all stay. It’s very difficult for me to tell you because I will analyse every case individually and separately. Overall I would say my wish and my desire is that everybody stays. After, if you come and tell me ‘look, that’s what I offer you for this player’, I will say yes or no.

on strong home form…
We have been absolutely very strong at home and I think it’s the basis, the foundation of a good season. We want to continue that. That’s why, despite the fact that we were disappointed that we couldn’t win at Southampton or West Ham, at least we haven’t lost. If we can transform our home games into win, that will not be too bad.

on Newcastle potentially playing like West Ham did… 
They will do, of course. Newcastle are in a difficult period as well, so they will want to defend well. I watched them against Man United and they were quite dangerous going forward as well. They are a team who will certainly be very sound defensively. Benitez has a lot of experience and they will come to the Emirates and certainly try to be organised defensively.

03:31

West Ham United (a) - Bitesize

on how close Ozil is to a new deal and links to Man United…
How close? I don’t know how close.

on if he’s talking to Ozil about a new deal…
We have never been approached by Man United anyway, so I don’t see why that came up and who found that. It’s always something that has been created.

on if he’s sure Ozil will stay…
Until the end of the season, for sure. The rest is open.

on if back four is way forward…
I will adapt a little bit to the problem we face. I played a back four at West Ham because I thought we’d have a lot of the ball and wanted one more offensive player in the team.

on if motivation is an issue for AFC with City’s lead at the top…
The motivation shouldn’t be a problem because I would say you’re more motivated to reduce the distance between you and them. But it’s true that recently in recent games, the distance has suddenly become very big. They are flying at the moment because they are full of confidence and their opponents certainly are a little bit more scared to have a real go at them as well.

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