• Premier League

Wenger: I have to sell before I can buy

ESPN staff
July 21, 2012

Arsene Wenger has risked attracting more pessimism about Arsenal's Premier League title hopes this season by admitting he cannot sign another player until he manages to move one or two through the exit door.

Wenger named his pre-season tour party for Asia on Saturday, and the name of skipper Robin van Persie was missing from that list. The news comes after Sir Alex Ferguson confirmed he has registered a bid for the Netherlands international.

Arsenal boss Wenger remains determined to hold on to his prized asset, but with Manchester City and Juventus also keen to sign Van Persie an exit seems increasingly likely.

And, just days after former manager George Graham raised fears about Arsenal's ability to compete in the transfer market, Wenger confirmed those doubts by revealing he is limited until he can sell one or two individuals.

"We are still looking to add one or two players but it depends also on how many go out because we have to respect the squad number," Wenger told Arsenal Player.

"It's important to respect that so before we get players in we have to get some players out. That has not happened yet, the market is very quiet.

"I cannot tell you anything concrete about the situation [regarding those who might leave] because if they are not finding clubs they will stay here and be players of the squad. At the moment I cannot give you any concrete or clear indication."

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