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

Rory Marsden@@roomarsdenFeatured ColumnistMarch 2, 2017

SUTTON, GREATER LONDON - FEBRUARY 20: Arsene Wenger manager of Arsenal during The Emirates FA Cup Fifth Round match between Sutton United and Arsenal on February 20, 2017 in Sutton, Greater London. (Photo by Catherine Ivill - AMA/Getty Images)
Catherine Ivill - AMA/Getty Images

Mesut Ozil is likely to be fit for Arsenal's crucial Premier League clash with Liverpool at Anfield on Saturday, while Gunners manager Arsene Wenger has ruled himself out of the running for the Barcelona job.

Doubts were thrown over the Germany international's inclusion against the Reds after he was sent home from Gunners training on Wednesday with a "minor bug," per James Olley in the Evening Standard.

However, Wenger said in his pre-match press conference that Ozil should be ready for action come Saturday afternoon, per ESPN FC's Mattias Karen:

Frenchman Wenger also addressed rumours linking him with the manager's job at Barcelona—current boss Luis Enrique recently announced he will leave at the end of the season. He insisted his priority remains to stay at Arsenal, per Joe Mewis in the Mirror:

My preference has always been Arsenal but I am objective enough to make the right decision for myself and the club itself.

The club can also make their decision if it wants and I will respect that. I am not looking for jobs of other clubs or jobs of other people.

I am just focusing on getting to the next level and try to improve. Competent managers always try to get better, to reinvent themselves.

Arsenal's last Premier League game was a scrappy 2-0 defeat of Hull City on Feb. 11 that ended a two-game losing streak.

A win over Liverpool is a must for the Gunners if they are to avoid being dragged into a scrap for the top four.

Premier League 2016-17: Top Six
#TeamPlWDLFAGDPts
1Chelsea26203355193663
2Tottenham Hotspur26158350183253
3Manchester City25164551292252
4Arsenal25155554282650
5Liverpool26147555332249
6Manchester United25139338211748
Sky Sports

If Manchester United beat Bournemouth in Saturday's early game, Arsenal will be fifth by the time they kick off against the Reds and will then slip to sixth if they lose on Merseyside.

Liverpool are enduring an inconsistent spell of form that saw them lose 3-1 to relegation-battling Leicester City on Monday just two weeks on from beating title hopefuls Tottenham Hotspur 2-0.

The reverse fixture between Liverpool and Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium was back on the opening weekend of the season and ended in a 4-3 victory for Jurgen Klopp's side.

Wenger will be desperate to avoid another defeat on Saturday, and he confirmed he has a couple of key players returning to fitness, per Olley:

It has increasingly been rumoured of late that Wenger could depart Arsenal at the end of the season following more than 20 years at the club, per John Cross in the Mirror.

Ensuring another top-four finish for the Gunners would likely see Wenger remain at the club, though, and defeat of Liverpool will go some way to achieving that goal. But it will be a challenging task if the Reds find their best form after their chastening defeat to Leicester. 

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