It’s business time at the Emirates Stadium.
Arsene Wenger could probably do without all the stress of completely overhauling his squad in January, but after 30 years in the game it’s something he’s probably used to by now.
The Gunners manager has provided some major updates on the situation regarding Alexis Sanchez, Malcom and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, the latter of which he came very close to confirming the signing of.
Speaking to the press on Thursday morning, Wenger said it is ‘better when it’s secret’ when talking about signing a player before it is confirmed when asked about the Borussia Dortmund striker.
He said: “I have nothing to add on that. This kind of thing is better when it’s secret and when you don’t comment before announcing it when it’s over the line.
“Would he fit in? Yes because character can be a very positive note and negative but overall you look at the achievement of a player over his career and when it’s been positive the character has been used in a positive way.”
Wenger is far too wise to comment on a player before it is properly official, but the fact he’s gone as far as to say he won’t be commenting until it’s really over the line is the clearest indication yet that the Gunners are incredibly close to signing the BVB striker.
Meanwhile, Wenger also said Bordeaux man Malcom is ‘not close’ to signing and the Frenchman is not hopeful of signing the impressive Brazilian forward.
Unsurprisingly, the Gunners manager also had a bit to say on the Alexis Sanchez situation, and a proposed deal involving Henrikh Mkhitaryan.
On Alexis, he said: “That is a story where you are well documented in the media so I do not have a lot to add to that. It can happen, it can as well not happen.
“If it doesn’t happen he will play on Saturday. I worked on transfers for 30 years so it is likely to happen but at any moment or minute things can break down.
“As long as it’s not over the line you have to accept it may not happen. These kind of things are not guaranteed.”
And finally on Mkhitaryan, he said: “It’s a possibility it’s because I like the player. We played many times against him when he was at Dortmund. He appreciated the quality of our games. The wages would not be a problem.”
So there we have it – we can’t imagine anyone would envy being in Wenger’s shoes right now, but the signing of Aubameyang from Dortmund would certainly be a statement that the Gunners boss has still got some pulling power in the game.