Arsenal vs. Burnley: Arsene Wenger's Key Pre-Match Press Conference Comments

Rory Marsden@@roomarsdenFeatured ColumnistJanuary 19, 2017

SWANSEA, WALES - JANUARY 14:  Arsene Wenger, Manager of Arsenal during the Premier League match between Swansea City and Arsenal at Liberty Stadium on January 14, 2017 in Swansea, Wales.  (Photo by Tony Marshall/Getty Images)
Tony Marshall/Getty Images

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger rubbished rumours linking West Ham United's Dimitri Payet with a move to the north London club ahead of the Gunners' Premier League clash with Burnley on Sunday.

West Ham boss Slaven Bilic recently told the media that the Frenchman wants to leave London Stadium. Arsenal are one of a number of clubs that have been linked to Payet, per the Daily Star (h/t the Telegraph).

However, Wenger said in a press conference on Thursday that Arsenal have no need for another creative attacker, although he did admit to liking the 29-year-old's game: "I expect [the January transfer window] to be a very quiet period. We are very strong. We have many, many players who can come in. I rate Payet, but I don't need Payet because we have so many creative players. We have many players who can play in this position."

The Gunners boss also confirmed club captain Per Mertesacker has been given a one-season contract extension and that Carl Jenkinson's move to Crystal Palace is not yet complete, per ESPN FC's Mattias Karen:

Mattias Karén @MattiasKaren

Wenger confirms Arsenal have exercised option to extend Mertesacker's contract for another season.

Mattias Karén @MattiasKaren

Wenger says Jenkinson's move to Palace still not finalised: "It's basically down to him now to find an agreement with them."

Arsenal are fourth in the Premier League, eight points behind leaders Chelsea, and they go into their home clash with Burnley on the back of a 4-0 drubbing of Swansea City.

They will be heavy favourites to prevail against the Clarets—who have earned just one point away from home this season—and need to pick up the three points in order to keep within touching distance at the top of the table. 

In a boost for the Gunners, they will welcome Hector Bellerin, Francis Coquelin and Kieran Gibbs back to the squad for the Burnley game, per the Evening Standard's James Olley:

James Olley @JamesOlley

At Colney. Wenger: "Bellerin, Coquelin and Gibbs are back in thr group. Not Walcott, no injuries from last week - Giroud is in training."

Arsenal have beaten Burnley in each of their last five clashes against the north-west club. However, the last three matches between the two sides have been decided by just one goal.

Sean Dyche's side will not be easy to break down, and the Gunners will need a fine performance if they are to prevail.


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