• Premier League

Wenger stands by Arsenal transfer policy

ESPN staff
October 25, 2012
Arsene Wenger faced a grilling from fans at Arsenal's AGM © PA Photos

Arsene Wenger has acknowledged there is unrest among Arsenal fans, but is confident the Gunners are heading in the right direction.

The Gunners have not won a trophy since 2005 and now lag behind Manchester United and Chelsea, while Manchester City have sailed past them in the past couple of years.

Wenger attended a feisty AGM on Thursday, with the mood not helped by the mauling at the hands of Schalke the previous evening.

Chief executive Ivan Gazidis and chairman Peter Hill-Wood bore the brunt of the criticism, but Wenger was also in the spotlight.

The Frenchman apologised for the defeat to Schalke, but stressed that the club are well placed to push on and challenge for trophies.

Wenger said: "This team started in a very dynamic and promising way. We hit the wall in the last two games, which was a bit unexplainable, but the attitude and focus of the team every day is fantastic.

"We have some good news with players coming back.

"I believe this team can deliver and I am optimistic we will have a good season and the players will show I am right."

Moving to justify his transfer policy, Wenger said: "My job is to deliver a team with the resources we have, and I have never complained about that.

"I want a club to pay players from its own resources, there is no shame in that.

"It is still important that we keep our strength and stay united for the good of Arsenal."

Wenger also maintained qualification for the Champions League should retain value ahead of just any old silverware.

He said: "Players ask: 'Are you in the Champions League?' A new player doesn't want to know if you have won the League Cup.

"For me there are five trophies every season: Premier League, Champions League, the third is to qualify for the Champions League. The fourth is the FA Cup and then the League Cup."

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