Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has been talking ahead of his side’s Premier League match with Liverpool.
On Raheem Sterling’s Liverpool Departure
They refused to sell us Luis Suárez, so I cannot feel too much sympathy for them. Liverpool are in a position that they can make their own decisions.
On Sterling’s Behaviour
I personally rate Raheem Sterling. I personally don’t think that Sterling was making a lot of drama. It’s just during the transfer window. During the season the boy was quiet, never made any stupid statement or noise. With Suárez, [Daniel] Sturridge, Sterling, they scored over a hundred goals. To do that you need special quality, and Sterling was part of that.
On Home Form
You need to be strong at home, that is for sure. If you want to win the championship you need to win your home games. It can happen that you lose the odd game, but overall you need home strength. Against teams who came only to defend, we didn’t find the goal. But it happens to all the other teams as well. Normally you would think over 19 games you can sometimes be unlucky once or twice. Most of the time if you really dominate the games you will win. Liverpool will be a different game than West Ham. Against West Ham, we conceded from a set piece and after it was difficult.
On Handling Christian Benteke
Yes we will work on it [stopping him]. We managed to deal with him in the [FA Cup] final. Then again, every game is a new challenge and we have to show that we can do it. He has the stature, he is good in the air, protects the ball well… He is similar to (Arsenal striker Olivier) Giroud. They are players who live from crosses. When there are crosses in the box, both of them are dangerous.
On Alexis Sanchez
He is already better than when he arrived. In his final finishing there is room for improvement, in his final ball he is already much better, his vision is quite good an incisive. He has that desire to go forward and provoke. He is a guy who provokes chaos in the defences because he has a go at you. He has a desire to go forward, to provoke opponents, to run at people, creates danger. What Sanchez has is in the first two yards he is lightning quick. He has that explosive attitude linked with his spirit. That makes him even more spectacular.
On New Players
It’s an impossible job [keeping everyone happy] but that’s why I tell you I always get asked two questions — why don’t you buy more players, and how do you keep them all happy now? You have to get the numbers right. If you have a certain number of players who think they will never have a chance to play, it kills something. Not enough players creates too much of a comfort zone.
Arsenal host Liverpool tonight.