Arsene Wenger is on the defensive, and claims he’s surprised at being branded a liar over the Danny Welbeck saga, as reported by Sky Sports.
Arsenal fans were understandably unhappy with Wenger’s inability to bring a striker to the club this past summer, and matters were made worse when it turned out Welbeck needed surgery – and could miss up to six months (via Sky Sports).
As the report suggests, Wenger was made aware of Welbeck’s injury status before the window closed. He waited until after the window slammed shut to reveal the news however, and supporters were furious that more wasn’t done to ensure a replacement was brought in – with some suggesting the information was intentionally kept from the fans.
“First of all I am surprised that people accused me of lying when I was in the press conference on Friday morning [August 28]. I did not know Welbeck had a bad setback. I did not lie to you, I gave you the information I had,” Wenger said.
“I heard late on Friday night that his condition had not evolved as well as we thought it was and he had needed specialist and needed further investigation. Apart from that, if we did not find someone [to sign], we did not find them.”
It’s understandable to think Wenger was hiding the information, as not only would it have increased the calls from fans for a striker, but also would have weakened our position in the transfer market.
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The manager insists that regardless of Welbeck’s injury, there just weren’t any players available.
“I’ve made over 300 transfers, and every time it’s a decision to make. You buy a player because he strengthens your squad or not, and the solutions we had were not convincing at all,” he continued.
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Wenger has often been economical with the truth, as is the nature of the the game nowadays. He doesn’t seem like the type to outright lie to the fans though, so is the criticism a little unfair?