Arsene Wenger has confirmed that Arsenal are interested in signing Borussia Dortmund’s Gabonese striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang but stated that no final decision has been made.
Arsenal are looking to make Aubameyang their second signing following the acquisition of Henrikh Mkhitaryan from Manchester United with Alexis Sanchez going the other way.
Wenger was speaking at Tuesday’s press conference ahead of Arsenal’s Carabao Cup second leg semi-final clash against Chelsea on Wednesday.
“Confident or not confident, I don’t know,” Wenger said.
“We are not close to a deal for Aubameyang with Dortmund or anybody else.
“He is one of our possible movements but there are others. The final decision is not made.
“You look at players, what can they give to the team. Good players can always play together.”
Wenger expressed delight that Arsenal were able to get a world class player in Mkhitaryan following Sanchez’s departure to United.
“I believe we lose a world class player and gain a world class player,” he added.
“How efficient will that work? It will be down to the qualities of both players.
“Mkhitaryan has the qualities to integrate into our game. He has a good team attitude. He’s very versatile.
“They [Mesut Ozil and Mkhtaryan] can play together.
“He can play in all kinds of positions. He is very versatile and it should help us going forward. He can bring quality of creativity, technical stability and experience.
“I have no doubt about his attitude.
“He suffered a bit with the competition he had there [United].
“I will know how much [it affected his confidence] over the next few weeks.
“That his challenge and my challenge to get that out here.”
He said how Mkhitaryan performs in training will determine whether he will go straight into the first team.
“It depends on the team’s performance. His performance in training as well.”
Commenting on Sanchez’s move, Wenger reiterated that the former Barcelona star went for money.
“[Sanchez] goes to a great club and has a great contract. He is 29 years old, it is maybe his last contract. Financially it’s important. He could combine both. He’s going to a great club.”
The French coach dismissed talks about Arsenal being a selling club, saying it does not bother him.
“No, I’m not worried about that.
“When players get to a certain age and want to go you have to respect that.”
On the Cup tie against Chelsea, Wenger said: “We want to go to the final, the two teams know each other very well. The second leg will be more open. It should be much more spectacular than the first one.”
And on the injury front, Wenger ruled disclosed that Aaron Ramsey could be back from injury but ruled out Nacho Monreal, Olivier Giroud and Danny Welbeck.
“We might have Ramsey back in the squad.
“He has a test today.
“We have uncertainty about Nacho Monreal.
“Giroud and Welbeck are a fraction short.”