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Wenger remains coy over Sterling to Arsenal transfer rumors


Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger refused to be drawn on the latest transfer speculation surrounding Liverpool forward Raheem Sterling – and insisted it would be “stupid” to allow anything to disrupt their end to the season.

Reports have emerged the 20-year-old England forward wants to leave Anfield this summer, rejecting the offer of a contract extension said to be worth around £100,000-a-week.

Sterling’s agent on Tuesday moved to distance his client from the unsettling speculation, stating there was a meeting scheduled with Liverpool later this week and “we will take proceedings from there.”

Arsenal have been touted as a possible destination for Sterling were he to move.

However, ahead of Wednesday night’s game against Sunderland, Gunners boss Wenger was keen to play down any agenda which could deflect focus from securing third place in the Barclays Premier League and the FA Cup final at Wembley on May 30.

“At the moment we are not in a transfer mode. We want to finish our season well,” said Wenger.

“We have put massive effort in since the start of the season to come back into a potentially good position in the Premier League, and now we need to focus on finishing well. We have put so much effort in that it would be stupid not to finish the job well.

“The transfer period comes after the FA Cup final.”

Pressed whether Arsenal would put in a bid for Sterling once the season was over, Wenger replied: “In the summer we will bid for people, (but) at the moment we are not in transfer mode at all.


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“You absolutely want me to say something that I don’t want to say.

“I don’t like to lie. If I say that I will and I don’t do it, then I have lied.”

Liverpool have always maintained they want to keep Sterling, having seen star man Luis Suarez eventually leave for Barcelona last summer after rebuffing a £40million-plus-B£1 bid from Arsenal ahead of the 2013/2014 campaign.

Wenger said: “They have the right to decide what they want but at the end of the day, in our jobs you need the agreement of the player as well.”

Manchester City midfielder James Milner is another player said to be on Wenger’s radar, with the England international set to be a free agent in the summer.

However, the Arsenal boss gave little indication he was ready to make a move for the experienced 29-year-old.

“We have a big squad at the moment and we do not need a number of players,” said Wenger.

“(Transfers) or contract talks at the moment are not in my mind at all.

“What I want is to finish well the season, and after I will make my decisions.”

Arsenal responded from last week’s disappointing home defeat to Swansea to earn a 1-1 draw at Old Trafford on Sunday, keeping them two points ahead of Manchester United, and they can secure third place by beating Sunderland at the Emirates Stadium.

“We would like to finish first, but that is mathematically impossible so we need to finish as well as we can,” said Wenger, who will check on the fitness of Laurent Koscielny following the defender’s bout of flu.

“We have the possibility of taking six points, but it will not be enough (for second place) if Manchester City win their last game against Southampton.

“How much chance do we have? I don’t know. The only chance we have is to win our games.”

Sunderland are battling at the other end of the table, with the goalless draw against Leicester edging Dick Advocaat’s side closer to staying up.

“Sunderland are in search of a point to be safe, so I expect them to be well organized defensively and to be sound at the back, and to try to use all the counter-attacks they can, all the set-pieces they have, to score goals,” said Wenger.

“We have to put a high rhythm into this game and play with a high level of energy to win the game.”

Arsenal will again be without forward Danny Welbeck (knee) and midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (hamstring).

Both players face a race against time to be fit for the FA Cup final against Aston Villa.

“They all have to get fit very quickly now because there is not a long way to go (to the cup final),” Wenger said.


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  1. mark williamson

    May 20, 2015 at 7:18 am

    Sterling, is an immature young man with dreams of going to glory and gold before he has even proven himself or done the work in the ditches. Quite frankly, as an Arsenal supporter I would not to see a man of his character play for us. I miss van Persie and like him but do not respect him for the dreams in his head that he needed to abandon a team that supported him, we do not need another.

    • Fred the Red

      May 20, 2015 at 10:27 am

      How is that immature to want to go play for another team that will offer you more money and give you a better chance at winning?
      Why didn’t anyone say all this when he left QPR?
      Sterling has the right to go. It’s not like you’d turn down a better job with more money imo.
      Effort has never been a problem for him on the pitch consistency has. He’s tried and he has done the hardwork.
      How many people out there were very responsible at the age of 20 with bags of money available to them?
      Van Persie might not be the nicest guy inthe world but he left Arsenal to win titles and he has done that. If anything you should blame Arsenal football club for RVP leaving. The team wasn’t contending and he was nearing his thirties with nothing to show for it and to this day he has been vindicated of not staying.

      • mark williamson

        May 20, 2015 at 8:00 pm

        Simply because he has not proven himself and actually has fallen flat in his performance over the last few games. His immaturity comes in to play thinking that he is on top of the world and not realizing the fact that you can not just jump around saying, ” I’m great, I need more money and win trophies.” He needs to play and grow and have some hardships to realize that it takes more than just trying to joina big team and everything will fall in to place. Ain’t gonna happen. It may stink, but it’s my opinion.

      • mark williamson

        May 20, 2015 at 8:05 pm

        Btw, van Persie one title. Now he may be on his way out. Also your comment,”How many people out there were very responsible at the age of 20 with bags of money available to them?” Answer, very very few.

        You are missing my point. I want a guy with loyalty on my team. Not someone who has a bad season and cries he wants to play for a big team and win trophies. Hey, who doesn’t? But the kids is 20 and has not put i the time and shown himself.

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