Arsene Wenger says he expects to sign a defender before the start of the new season.
The Arsenal manager has been pressed into urgent action following the injury to Per Mertesacker, and admitted last week that he was seeking an experienced player to boost the squad.
Asked about transfers at a press conference ahead of the game against Chivas Guadalajara in Los Angeles on Sunday, Wenger was asked if he expected to sign a defender before the opening game against Liverpool.
“Yes I do,” he said. “We are still on the market for players. At the front or at the back – we are on the market. Unfortunately we are not alone.”
The Gunners have been linked with a number of centre-halves in recent days, from German international Shkodran Mustafi, Man City’s Jason Denayer, Club Brugge’s Björn Engels, and even West Brom’s Jonny Evans.
Speaking more generally about the transfer activity, he said, “I buy players that I feel can strengthen our team. Today you have to be very strong inside the club when you are responsible, not just to buy [for the sake of buying]. There’s always a wave of opinions.
“I must say people are better informed today – they know all the players. They tell you always that you should buy but when you ask them who to buy, they become much shorter. If you look at the market in Europe, there’s a lot of money available but not many players who really strengthen the teams.
“If you look at the teams that spend the most money in Europe, they’re not necessarily the teams that won the championships. The global investment of the clubs around us didn’t stop Leicester winning the championship.”
And on further links to striker Alexandre Lacazette, Wenger was playing his cards close to his chest as usual, “We are on the market but I don’t want to talk specifically about any player because that makes it more difficult for me – and it’s difficult enough.”
So, it sounds like stuff is kinda happening without happening yet. Which is better than nothing happening because nothing’s happening. If you catch our drift.