It’s been a mixed week on the road, with one regrettable slip-up at Watford and one unforgettable winner at Red Star Belgrade.
Amid all that, Troy Deeney has questioned our fighting spirit and Mesut Ozil has been the subject of transfer speculation.
Arsene Wenger was asked about those talking points as he continued his preparations for Sunday’s trip to Everton. Here’s what the boss said:
on showing character after Troy Deeney’s comments…
The only response we have to give is on the pitch and not listen too much to what people say. If you look at these players and what they have achieved in their careers, I think think that speaks much more than any sentence at a post-match press conference. When you’re questioned, in our job there is only one response and that is on the pitch.
on reports about Ozil joining Man United in January…
No. We have to deal with all kinds of speculation when the players are at the end of their contracts. On the other hand, to be professional is to give 100 per cent as long as you are somewhere. For the rest, we came out many times and said that’s the situation. It [the media] can come out tomorrow and say that he extends his contract here. It will be exactly the same, it will not change anything. When you play the next game, commit 100 per cent.
on if those reports affect the manager’s plans for Sunday…
Not really. I believe that at the moment I just focus on what is the best possible team for the next game and have no pre-conceived ideas if the guy will be 100 per cent committed or not. That would be unfair on my side, because you don’t have any opinion about that. When a player plays for Arsenal Football Club, his commitment cannot be linked with the length of his contract, it has just to be linked with the responsibility and the ambition he has to win the football game.
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