Arsene Wenger says he understands the frustration felt by injured defender Mathieu Debuchy but rejects some of his compatriot’s assertions put forward in L’Equipe this week.
The right-back claims he and the boss barely speak aside from greeting each other each day and hinted that Arsenal have blocked moves away from the club.
Asked about the situation ahead of the Gunners’ final game of 2016, Wenger underlined his disappointment with the tone of the interview while confirming that he’s willing to accept offers for the player.
“Yes, of course [we’re open to letting him go]. But we speak, we have communication with all the players.
“It’s a little bit a frustrated article from a player who is injured. You know, when you are injured you cannot play. When he had the opportunities to play, when Bellerin was injured, he was injured. I cannot do anything about that.
“I gave him last year the opportunity to go to Bordeaux on loan but we had nobody coming in for him during the summer period.
“There are some things that are not true in this article, we never blocked him to go to Fiorentina nor Espanyol – they had no interest in him at all. We checked that.
“You have to take this article with a little distance.
It was then put to Wenger that Debuchy may still be nursing annoyance at the fact that a move to Manchester United, mooted this time last year, was blocked.
As you may remember, Wenger went on the record in February stating that it was ‘logical’ to not lend a player to a rival. More recently – in November – L’Equipe revealed further details of the approach claiming Louis van Gaal had proposed a permanent deal, offering the player a five-year contract.
Maintaining that a formal approach to sign the player was not made, Wenger continued: “They [United] have never made an offer for him. It’s completely untrue.
“It is sometimes surprising to hear things like that.”
Given that Wenger rarely calls out his players like this, it’s fair to assume he’s pretty miffed with the way Debuchy is behaving. Having shelled out £12 million, we’re certain to take a pretty hefty loss on the France international, assuming there’s a team ready to pay his not insignificant wages.