Published: Fri, September 22, 2017
Sport | By Wendy Sparks

Arsene Wenger hails Alexandre Lacazette's start to life in Premier League

Arsene Wenger hails Alexandre Lacazette's start to life in Premier League

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger confirms that the club decided not to offer Kieran Gibbs a new deal before he moved to West Bromwich Albion.

Wenger acknowledged that Sanchez was "not really fit" when he came back from his extended summer holiday - having played in the summer's Confederations Cup with Chile - but rejected the notion that he has kept him on the bench for Premier League games as punishment for pushing for a transfer this summer.

Asked if Sanchez was central to his plans, Wenger said: "Not more than any other".

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However, Sanchez started the 3-1 Europa League win over Cologne - in which he scored his first goal of the season - and the 1-0 victory over Doncaster Rovers in the EFL Cup on Wednesday.

"I said I chose the team at Chelsea who can be strong on the counter-attack and fight very hard and Sanchez could have played if he was 100 per cent fit at the start, but for me there's no real hierarchy".

"There is no disguised attitude on my side".

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Wenger also hailed West Brom midfielder Gareth Barry's "outstanding achievement" of being on the verge of breaking the Premier League's appearance record - and revelaed he wanted to sign the player when he left Aston Villa for Manchester City in 2009.

"He said: "'He connects well with the other players, he's disciplined, he works hard for the team. I believe that on technical and tactical aspects I'm very pleased.

'Alexis has been out and injured and I thought he was still a little bit short on Sunday physically, and I played him last night [against Doncaster in the Carabao Cup] to give him more competition'.

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Wenger confirmed that Arsenal did not offer the 27-year-old a new deal in the summer but said: "It will be odd to see him in a different shirt because he is a player who has been educated here from a very young age. It's good, so I'm just trying to push on now".

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