Wenger Pre-Liverpool Press Conference

Everything Wenger said in his Press Conference before the Liverpool game. If some bits don’t make complete sense, well that’s because Arsene said it and these are his exact expressions.

“The players who were rested [at Brighton] are all available. We have Vermaelen who was not in the squad, who is back. Arteta, Coquelin, are still out.”

On Brighton – “We played a quality side, and we prepared ourselves to deal with it. First half we had some problems, but in the second half I think we controlled well the game and overall we did what we wanted to do. We played certainly against one of the better sides in this round of the FA Cup, and Brighton for me has a chance to come up to the Premier League.

Effect on Liverpool of being knocked out – “You don’t know how teams respond, it’s a shock of course when you go out, but we just look at ourselves to play well tomorrow and don’t look too much at how Liverpool will respond to that.

When asked about Liverpool’s attacking threat, Wenger said “They have bought Sturridge, they have Suarez of course, who has scored 16/40 goals they’ve scored so he’s a massive influence in their efficiency, and Sterling is for me a young, promising striker who has an England future certainly”

With regards to David Beckham, “Yeah [he is training here], he’s asked to come here and to work on his fitness he has not done anything for a long, long time and he comes here to try to be fit again.

Question on how it came about, the simple answer was “He called me.”

No transfer will happen though, however. “Yes, purely for fitness, there’s no speculation about signing or anything.

“No [there’s nothing he can do to help us], I believe that he is come here purely on fitness purpose”

What Wenger gets out of Beckham training, “Nothing, questions in the press conference, and to help somebody who I think deserves, when he wants, we are open for people who behave well when they come here, and who have made great service for English football of course you know we always try to help.”

Next up, transfers.

“When we sign somebody we will inform you.

“Yes [I am trying to sign somebody], I’ve said that many times.

“No [the David Villa rumour] doesn’t go away, but Barcelona doesn’t want to sell David Villa, they have made it very, very clear.

“You respect the desire if I say that somebody’s not for transfer, I expect the other clubs to not to try and buy him.

“In January it’s very difficult to find players who strengthen your team when you are in our position, yes.”

Arsene’s favourite transfer deadline day?

“I have many, many, but most of the time was a lot of tension on the day because you don’t know if you will manage to do it, but maybe the most important one was last year when we bought 5 players in 2 days, we had some timing where we just midnight, 5 past 12, of course there was a lot of tension there.”

Back to the Liverpool game, again asked on how he thinks Liverpool will respond, Wenger responds:

“[It] Depends on the teams, it’s always a big disappointment to go out of the FA Cup but you don’t speculate because you never know what exactly kind of response you get. I think what is important for us is to be us at our best and cope with what Liverpool we offer us.”

Do Brendan Rodger’s young players have something to prove after being criticised?  “Certainly yes but, there again its difficult to imagine I think if he’s not happy with the younger players they will not play on Wednesday.”

On his dealings with the board at this time.

“I have mainly more dealings with our scouts, and more contacts with our scouts, and after that of course, if something special happens first of all we are linked nearly on a daily basis with Ivan Gazidis and he makes the link with the board.”

I believe that [Theo signing] was very important for us yes, as it gives two messages out, the first is that we want to keep our best players and are capable to do it, and secondly, offensively we are not in a position where we have absolutely to be desperate to buy anybody as Theo can play through the middle and down the flanks.”

Playing Liverpool: “It is very important for us of course, it’s a very important game for us, and the run that starts now you know, I said after the Chelsea game we cannot afford to drop points.”

“No [there’s no room for negotiation with David Villa]”

Has Wenger had to change his targets? “I didn’t say that David Villa was our target.”

“No [I don’t see bringing no one in as a problem]”

“[Because] I think what is important is you bring in players who can strengthen your team, or you do nothing and you’re strong enough to do nothing, and that is what is important for us.

“Anyone for me means just exactly what is today the modern game has become.

“In numbers we have enough, we have plenty of quality strikers.”

Is it a shame Suarez’s quality is clouded by the other side of him? – “Yes he’s a great player who would deny that.”

Are people like this hard to work with? “You know really people when you work everyday on a daily basis with them, I don’t know is he hard to manage or not, is he a great football player, I say yes.

“Yes [I have a view on politics and sport mixing].”

“There’s two things that the government wants clear rules for football to be managed, I agree completely that politics rule football I am not for it. Football is for me a company, like any company who is in entertainment and has to be managed in a clear way, I always defended that, but apart from that the government has a view on that and how it has to be managed and how the sustainability of the club is of course supported, that’s very important, but apart from that it has to be managed on an independent way. I think personally, that the real pride of a football club is to be independent and not rely on anybody from outside. It is like for you, like for me, the real pride is to produce your life with the quality of your work and your dedication, and that’s how a football club should be managed.”

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