Tuesday, December 7, 2021

Wenger on Sanchez, contracts & Dembele-style inflation

Some more snippets from Arsene Wenger’s Interlull interview with beIN Sports.

He’s already spoken about killing the January transfer window, the performance at Liverpool and Thomas Lemar, now read his take on letting Alexis run down his contract, why so many players in England are doing the same and why Ousmane Dembele’s move to Barcelona is representative of an unsustainable transfer market…


On letting Sanchez run down his contract…

“You take Sanchez into the final year of his contract, you sacrifice £60-70million income.

“At the end of the season you will have to buy somebody for that amount of money. He has a huge price, so at some stage you have to make a decision.

“You have to sacrifice one [the player] or two [the transfer fee & the cash for a new player].


On attitudes towards player contracts…

“We have today 107 players in England going into the final year of their contract. It is a complete rotation and change in the way people see their career, for two reasons.

“One, all the players expect higher wages because they anticipate inflation.

“[On the other hand] the clubs do not want to pay so high prices on the transfers for players who are good players but won’t change their life.”


On spiraling prices…

“The amount of money is completely disconnected from reality and the truth. I give you one example.

“[Ousmane] Dembele last year was £15million [for Borussia Dortmund to buy], this year £150 million.

“No matter how well you work on a football pitch you cannot make a player go from 15 to 150, but the calculation between investment and what you can get back that has gone.

“It’s just can you afford to buy or not.”

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150m for Dembele? Dortmund were laughing all the way to the bank.


I think it was the Neymar effect. Do u blame Dortmund when they saw Barca received 200 million from Neymar transfer to PSG. Everyone wanted Neymar’s money from Barcelona even Liverpool

Cultured determination

Yup. With the 150m dortmund can afford to buy 3-5 players of potential for 10-15 mil each, while buying a 30m playwr who is at the peak of his game aged 26-28.


A player on peak of his game would now cost around 60-80 mil atleast,e.g Lukaku Lacazette Lemar etc

Too Drunk To Be Offside

I agree with him that Arsenal will always be priced out by the big players. Back when Arsenal bought players for 15 mil, the big spenders shelled out 55 mil. Now the club could spend 55 mil, the ceiling has risen to 100 mil +.


Barca doesn’t have a rich sugar-daddy owner. How do they do it?


Why don’t you look it up


There is some delicious irony in hearing Barca whine about losing a star player on transfer


Ousmane Dembele is a near world-class attacking midfielder already. In this crazy market Barca have paid good money, but they’re getting a top-class young talent. At 20, I think he could be Iniesta-like for Barca and serve them for a long long time. If he keeps his head down and stays injury free he’ll make the transfer fee look completely worth it.


You are completely disconnected with reality


I think a lot of people (me included a couple of days ago) forget about the player himself when it comes to the price of Dembele. Was he really expensive? Of course. Compared to his talent? I think: probably – but absolutely not as much as it seems, because to be honest: As far as talent itself concern – I think he is on par (at least) with Pogba or Dybala. For example: He was among the top 10 player in Ligue1 when he was 18 and last year he was also among the top 10 in Bundesliga (at 19)… Read more »


yes lol


Look at Lemar, He was priced allegedly around 60M at the beginning of the summer? Based off of what? Most said go ahead pay it because in next year he is going to cost 80M lol His cost went past that in 2 months time lol Its stupid money right now based off of nothing lol


Based on what people will pay. Competition is fiercer than ever and that’s driving up prices. Hard to really relate to any top team when they are mostly high priced mercenaries, some Arsenal players included. That’s why I loved project youth, and they were more fun to watch than the current bunch.

Mesut O\'Neill

July, Arsenal offered £30m for Lemar
August, Arsenal offer £92m for Lemar

Why didn’t Arsene just use his own example.

Gooner Sam

And this is the point, he can bemoan it all he likes but when it comes down to it, he could easily have been one of these ‘crazy people’


Also consider that clubs are earning more money in TV deals, even if they have a relatively poor (by their own standards) season, which you can say we did, yet received a bucket load of cash in the process. Smaller clubs are also receiving large sums of money, so they are then shelling out what used to be top prices for average players, remember it was not long ago when we all balked at the fee Liverpool paid for Andy Carroll only to sell him 2 years later at a loss. The fees paid for Dembele, Neymar, Mbappe are over… Read more »


Undoubtedly laughing all the way to the bank. Although when they signed him for £15m, I doubt they were looking at ten years service and were probably even then looking at a handsome profit one day. They certainly exploited the Neymar situation to get such a fee.

Doff the cap instead of showing a hint of jealousy Arsene. Our inificiancy to get top quality players nailed down to long term contracts is appalling and has been for a very long time. Just the same old excuses seem to pour out after every poor transfer window.


Bet you are one of those complaining some players’ contracts are too long for your liking too.


Football is currently in a bubble, which is bound to burst at some point.

Terry henry

I’m sure we will still find some bull shit excuse on why we are unable to bring in top top signings next summer. The club is in need of a shame up and it’s got to come from the top


I thinking your proofreading is shamy.


The club simply does not have £300000000 million to spend every season. Nobody but the nation of Qatar and a couple of Saudi princes.

Damo Dinkum

Pretty sure even Qatar would be struggling to pay 300 million million…

Gooner Sam

Dr Evil could


Irrelevant comment.

We didn’t spend any money. We made money.


And we should have spent it early and replaced sanchez and ozil.
To replace them next season is just not realistic at this club with the prices the way they are.
To buy the quality of sanchez will cost far more than we will be willing to spend.
Poor business from arsenal in all aspects.


Nobody wanted Sanchez, except Citeh, and nobody wanted Ozil. At all…I know everyone want AWs head, & the performance at Anfield was a shambles, but can we stop laying the blame for our transfer behaviour totally at his door? Ivan & Stan are just as much to blame, if not more in my opinion for the way we do business. The way Gazidis compared us to Leicester the other day should be a sackable offence. For me, this is the biggest issue for the football club, as those two goons will still be here after AW departs. (And before people… Read more »


Kronke out
Gazidis out
Wenger out

Fish rotten from head down. Time for a change.


Can we retire the “fish rotten from head down” analogy please!?


agree its not all wengers fault, the team have huge issues in terms of formation, motivation etc that are purely down to him but that aside the lead should come from higher up in terms of transfers etc on that i agree.
but if arsene is not happy with his lot and with the board he should resign and explain this to the fans, except he doesn’t he praises stan to the hilt and does his bidding for him, so at the very least he is complicit in whats going on at the club.


Perhaps no one wanted them b/c they will be free at the end of the season instead of $60M…?


Wasn’t aware that Mahrez, Seri, Nzonzi etc would have cost ” £300000000 million”…

Santi\'s Flip Flop


Spanish Gooner

N’Zonzi would have been a fantastic signing


Only Seri was worth signing. Mahrez sulky one season wonder who couldn’t find another club and Nzonzi is nowhere good enough

Xhaka Demus, no pliers

Anyone who think she N’zonzi isn’t going good enough needs to watch him in action and not just write him off because he used to play for Stoke. This guy would be a huge upgrade on our CM’s. Tall, strong and a great passer with excellent positional discipline. Xhaka is a great passer but none of our current CM’s offer any of his other qualities.

Billy Dyer

Do you (by any chance) work for Barclays?

Michael Bolton Wanderers

You might get crazy money for a player, but that means you have to pay crazy money for his replacement. Still better than doing nothing

Andre Santos\' car keys

If you gouge you get gouged in return. Which is why I had to have a laugh when Barcelona claimed they had to rebuke Liverpool’s £182m asking price for Coutinho in order to not “break the club.”

And the solvency of PSG was on your minds when you made them cough up £199m for Neymar in one lump sum?

Crash Fistfight

Eh? Do you think PSG have cash-flow problems?

I\'m Professor Ignorance, on this subject

Almost certainly. It’s probably very difficult to practice football in the sea of gold coins they presumably have as a training pitch.


yeah who stopped u from buying players when they were cheap…i still remember the season when we only bought in cech!!!always moaning about things is what wenger is good at…


Unlike you?

dr Strange

The new culture at Arsenal.


15M to 150M = 10X. Didn’t Anelka’s price go from 500K to 22M in one season? That’s 44X


To be fair, 500k is a much lower baseline than 15m. Easy to be 44x that.

Andre Santos\' car keys

Ederson and Davinson Sanchez are two good contemporary examples. The former did not even cost Benfica 500k.


Sanchez cost Ajax bout £7million though and went for £35million, he had just won the Copa America and is an defender. Thats different then being bought for less then £500k and sell at Citi money (£50million+), and that for a fuckin goalie ? it’s mental! Like Tupac said, ‘that’s just the way it it is, things will never be the same. I see no changes, I wake up in the morning and I ask myself…is Arsenal worth following or should I free myself?’ Well, something like that anyway ? And this Dembele fella, he can ball man, potentially better then… Read more »


I am going to be in Amsterdam on Saturday do you know where I can watch the match please?


But to be fairer on the broader point, the Anelka transfer of 22M was no mean feat against the world-record transfer of 32M for Christian Vieri that same year (1999).

So weighing up Dembele’s 135M against Neymar’s 200M World record transfer is a fair comparison.

And Wenger witnessed both first hand!
“A young French prodigy breaking into his stride for one-season before being sold to a Spanish giant”

nacho man

first hand?

Tasmanian Jesus

Yeah. Another similarity here is that neither of them are/were worth what they went for.


Yes that’s true. So what are you trying to prove ? Brilliant business by Awfor a player who wanted to leave

nacho man


Bruce Lee

Perhaps it is just me but, the opening paragraph is basically, Wenger is a twat, in sarcasm.


Just keep moaning Arsene, as they say if you want it that bad you go and get it! You obviously don’t want it and have no ambition to compete with the other top clubs. You need a big kick up the arsene off that sofa, you old cabbage!


This site is now just full of low-grade morons, like you. (OK, there are some good voices/people, but they’ve been drowned out). There’s no solidarity, no wit, no nuance, just whining Invincibles bandwagoners, bored FIFA-rettes, and serial groundhog moaners.

I’m out. Yeah, yeah, big loss, I know, but I’d rather wallow in my AFC misery alone/sans cyber-gaff than have to read the sheer amount of ignorant, vile garbage that fills the pages here lately.

For the record, I like cabbage.

Spanish Gooner

Would love to know what blogs thinks about this, has traffic to the sight increased in the last 18 months? Or have the people already here just become more apathetic and anti wenger? I’d put myself in the latter of the two options but it would be interesting to know

nacho man

piss off somewhere else

alternative facts are not facts

I used to to avoid watching his pressers and interviews because the combination of his excuses, his voice, and his unkept promises was enough to make my sick. Now I can’t even read his quotes anymore because I hear his voice as I read, and combined with the excuses and unkept promises I once again am sick.


Then why are you here???


oberon still seems to be in the #wengerin brigade!!! yes,watch him turn our beloved club into Ac milan standards before turning on him.

andre santos

exactly! we’re not even a top 4 club anymore


The wengerin brigade? Do you know how twatish that sounds? There are still people trying to make the best of a situation, who refuse to use every fucking article as an excuse for a bit more Wenger bashing. I’d take blind optimism over consistent fucking whinging any day of the week.

I\'m Professor Ignorance, on this subject

Those aren’t the only two choices, though…

nacho man

also well said danny
im leaving now cause im fed up of all this nonsense
its the owner we need out
yesterday…or yesteryear
failing that get behind the club, the team and the manager-a man that bleeds arsenal and is probably our greatest


I assume because he believes the club is bigger than the fool Wenger. That’s why i’m here.

nacho man

well fuckin said oberon


God, What a dinosaur… The biggest “disconnected from reality and the truth” person in today’s football is Arsene himself. The market has changed – There are bigger players and whole lot more money coming in then before, club’s are still spending the same percentage of their income to buy players since the early days of the PL, it’s just you who thinks that the market is ‘Crazy’ and ‘disconnected from reality’, you can sit all day blabbering about things that just don’t work in real life (aka FFP), or you can just play the game the way it is today… Read more »


I think the truth is arsenal can not compete in today’s market. The caliber of players we all expect to buy go for crazy money the club simply can’t afford. The oil sheikh clubs can afford to pay neymar/dembele money from their owners pocket and not necessarily from the clubs generated income. It is clear arsenal does not run along those lines and the owner will not put his personal money to fund transfers. Am pretty sure AW will like to buy those players but simply cant compete..The agitations should be directed upstairs


AW is in the pocket of Kronke. That’s why he got offered an extension. I agree it’s tough for us to compete with Citeh and PSG, but with the most expensive seats in football and the legacy we had 5 years ago, we should be closer to competing with the 5 clubs above us in EPL in terms of transfers and performance. But Wenger is so past his sell by date, we have no chance on or off the field. Conte, Poch, Pep, Klopp, that guy at Swansea, etc etc could all do so much better in the transfer market… Read more »


Who cares about the price of admission. Even if its the highest that doesn’t mean it its double what the next highest price is. Chelsea, City and to a certain extent Man U have deeper pockets. They will always spend more on transfers and wages.


It’s one of the factors that influences the fan dissatisfaction, that’s why it’s relevant. The club sold the move to Emirates and the following lean years as a necessary step to keep us as a top club. If fact, further than that, to compete with the top clubs in Europe. I still believe in that vision. That was the expectation set. We have a CLUB that is tee’d up for that. Great legacy, great fan base, great location in London, playing in great league, high capacity stadium. What we lack is the ownership, back office leadership, management and coaching to… Read more »


The fan dissatisfaction comes largely from the fact AW had so much success early in career with Arsenal when it was basically ManU and Arsenal battling for the PL. Our expectations are high but it doesn’t match up with what the league is today. Obviously I get it that the prices to go to the games doesn’t help when the club is “struggling” to compete with the big 6. I guess it depends on how you feel about what the club should spend on transfers and wages. If it was a true self sustaining model that we use I hope… Read more »

Andre Santos\' car keys

The same could be said for Thomas Lemar. Who 15 months ago would have paid more than £18m for him? And now both Arsenal and Liverpool had offered Monaco £90m. 500% increase? No matter how well you work on a football pitch… Bizarre as Wenger usually signs players for about market price if not much less does he not? A few players in the top 25 most expensive arrivals flopped but just about all of them looked like good value for money at the time of purchase. I have no complaints about the fees for the top 5 given how… Read more »


I hope you are right about Laca being as good as Griezmann, but i don’t think the evidence is there yet.


Did you just compare Antoine Griezmann to Lacazette? 😮
Its one thing to support your players but there is no justification for being downright delusional.

Wenger\'s Nose

€15m to €150m… Wenger has forgotten the good work he did with Anelka when he turned £500k into £22m! Those were the days…

Me So Hornsey

He really needs to just stop.

Journalists used to ask him questions to generate deeply thoughtful, intellectual, convincing and educated answers.

Now they ask him questions to generate lame, muddled, contradictory, unconvincing, comically hypocritical and poorly thought out excuses.

Very sad.


So what has he said in this interview which is poorly thought out. You can criticise him for a lot but this time he talks tota l common sense.

Me So Hornsey

His excuses are poorly thought out because letting your most valued assets get to the final year of their contracts is the reason he’s in this mess, not an inflationary market.

It’s not common sense as it’s happened time and again to us before, he too can take advantage of an inflationary market, the team is in utter disarray and what’s left of it is set to be torn apart next summer.

Ponsonby Gooner

The contracts situation is evidence that the Arsenal business model is failing- the head coach should not be blamed for contracts running down on players he wants to keep. As I understand it though within our model this is in fact Wengers responsibility. If we had the right structures in place with the right people and he could delegate this work we wouldn’t be in this mess. I think it’s likely that our defeat at Liverpool was probably due to a lack of preparation as Wenger was so tied up with player transfers. He has too many responsibilities at Arsenal… Read more »


Common sense has long left football.
If we don’t get with the times sooner rather than later? Then it could take us a very long time to get back to where we were, if ever?


More likely his answers are too deep for your one remaining brain cell to understand.


They said Wenger is a genius along that his mastery of French football. But can u all notice how many talents sold from French league Dembele, Aubamenyang , Kante etc and not one of them went to Arsenal. Don’t understand why Wenger didn’t buy a cdm even when William Cavarlho was available and holding talks with West Ham.


Because Willaim “Dud” Carvalho is not good enough.
Don’t see him as an upgrade to Coq.


Think Wenger’s falling into the pundit’s trap of talking about the effect that Man City or PSG have at the top end of the market and then saying “the market’s gone crazy”.

Also think the reason these beIN Sports clips with Arsene are so weird is you don’t actually hear anyone ask a question.

Was he even asked a question or is he just talking about stuff that’s on his mind?

Is he talking as a Bein football analyst or as Arsene Wenger the coach of Arsenal?


It’s common practice these days to leave out the interviewer, ain’t no conspiracy.


Okay I get that. It’s not a criticism of Wenger, more the format really.


I feel that the English press should be embarrassed at how different he is when giving information and opinion to overseas media. He’s been here 21 years and should be treated better but he’s still guarded. I agree with him saying the market is unsustainable but I don’t agree that he should use Arsenal as the lone standard bearer of economic decency. What was the point in keeping our powder dry when everyone is going powder crazy? (This is not a cocaine analogy)


Well they’ve been putting the boot into Arsenal for at least 15 years. Funny how the FA cup has become a ‘crap’ trophy after we won it.

Ivan Parasite

I agree with u..about the powder thing that is not an anology of cocaine. Keep it up.

OVO Titi

AW has now become a “Jack of all trades”, master of none. We Arsenal fans DO NOT care about the 107 players in the England with contracts running down, we care about Arsenal players and what the Arsenal board(Wenger) will do about them.

Quit quoting stats about that rest of the league/world! Give us back our Arsenal. FOH with these bullshit stats. Mans are bored!

Gus Caesar

What he says here is absolutely correct of course, but it is what it is unless you want to actually do something about it. For better or worse football has gone down the market economy route and Wenger has ridden the bubble as well as anyone and he’s done very well out of it in the process. I don’t hear him moaning about how managers’ salaries have increased or campaigning for reductions – he has done as much as anyone else to encourage that trend. It’s like being the Chief Executive of a train company but moaning about inflation in… Read more »


Pre planning Arsene, you’ve had years of last minute transfer panic to learn the lesson!
Shame he wasn’t asked why he insists in playing so many of his players out of position and why his midfield think its a great idea to both go charging into the oppositions box


He says it’ll cost £70mill to replace Alexis next season.
Maybe we wouldn’t need to replace Alexis next season if we’d spent that £70mill on improving aspects of our squad for this season.
I refuse to believe this guy has a legitimate PHD in economics.
He doesn’t seem to grasp the concept of supply and demand.
I love Arsene but he drives me up the wall


He just bought a 46M striker. 70M doesn’t get you far in this market. Unless you want to be Dortmund or Monaco. Buy young players and hope they become good in 2-3 years and sell them off.


He’s as laughable as an economist as he has become as a coach and as a manager. Very sad to watch his demise. I hope it ends soon while there’s still a shred of dignity left.

The arsenaut

So it is clear he LOVES to talk about finances, soooo why not aply for a job at Bloomberg or something like that, and let us at least buy in number’s if not compete in these “crazy” window’s.


I think, at the end of the season, we will look back and wish we took the money for Alexis Sanchez.

Gus Caesar

I do too.

Stuck on repeat...

So basically what he is saying, is that with inflation in the transfer market, our much promised & promoted “war chest” (that we haven’t really touched in years) is now basically a small change purse.


“You take Sanchez into the final year of his contract, you sacrifice £60-70million income.“. So why did we? If we keep him for this season, we then lose the £50m we could have got and we keep a player who is less than committed. And we pay his £10m wages. So why didn’t we sell him? Plus the £100m we’re likely to pay for a replacement next year. From an economic standpoint, Sanchez is costing us £3.1m per week this season, rising to £5m pw if we take the lost income from an earlier sale Wenger refers to. But AW… Read more »


Is this the new LANS? He counts players not sold as a signing now?

Oooh ahhh Ray Parlour

Well if that’s the case why don’t we give some youth a chance this season!! Plenty of chances, but I expect we’d more likely see senior players play out of position before that happens…


Sigh. Another article, another excuse for “fans” to bash Wenger. Why not lay the blame on Stan and Ivan?

And what the F*** is our scouting dept up to?


Because Wenger took the job, Wenger manages all off the field and on field decisions, Wenger fucked up the transfer business in and out, and Wenger fucked up the first three games (yes, Leicester was a fuck up). That’s why we all blame Wenger. Agree tho’ that Kronke and Gazidis are also at considerable fault.


Not all of us do.


I like the fact that Wenger/Arsenal have been openly talking about the transfer goings on and stuff, but I would really, really, really like him to explain that Liverpool lineup and the reasons behind it???


“Peeep peeep wizbang ting ting!”…

Stuck on repeat...

Preferred the simular picture of AW from a couple of days ago, where I could either pretend he was doing an “oh snap!” Or “Booyah!” guesture with his hand. Either that, or he was possibly playing “rock, paper, scissors”…which would seem to be how he & Glazidis conduct their transfer business.


Arsene is totally delusional and has been for years. Such a shame as he was my hero.


So Wenger is basically saying, we will never, ever compete for the main trophies again, as other clubs spend more money than us, and always will.
What’s the point of it all?


Just because something doesnt make sense, doesnt mean it isnt reality. Top viewpoint as always, but it seems wenger needs to educate the board yet again.

They bought in a new negotiator and still nothing has changed. Wenger has a signed many top players before this board came in, for large fees, but since Kroenke it’s been pretty consistent on the badly managed contracts side of things.

Spanish Gooner

True, we can’t compete with the likes of Barcelona on Dembele prices but I think if we’re clever we could have significantly imporved the team this year at a far lower price. A few examples: Right back: Aurier is a definite improvement on Debuchy (and enough quality to keep Bellerin on his toes) and moved for £23m to Spurs Defensive Midfield: Krychowiak moved on loan to West Brom, N’zonzi has a £35m release clause. Both upgrades on Coq/Elneny Central Midfield: Renato Sanches moved on loan to Swansea, Serri available for £35m due to his release clause. The problem isn’t our… Read more »


So we lose 60-70 mill for Sanchez by keeping him and need then to spend as much to replace him?

Mark Noble will cost 70million next year… Who knows what price we’d have to pay to replace a player like Sanchez!


This is what Wenger should have worked with now, analysing and explaining the ways of the football world. The fact he so often drifts off to the bigger picture when asked to explain arsenal specific struggles is a very clear sign off how he perceives himself. He is not a manager that is obsessed with fine tuning himself in anyway required to secure success, he is a missionary, his cause is “on a higher scale than short term success” buying ever more time for his ways of things to turn into gold. All these stats about 100+ players being out… Read more »

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