Arsenal will not give up youth policy, says Arsène Wenger

Key departures forced Gunners boss to sign experience this summer, but he will still look for young talent

arsene wenger
Wenger insists his policy of developing young talent remains unchanged PA Photos

arsene wenger

Arsène Wenger insists Arsenal will continue their policy of developing young talent despite bringing in some more experienced players this summer.

Wenger added Mikel Arteta (28), Per Mertesacker (26), André Santos (28) and Yossi Benayoun (31) to his squad following the departures of Cesc Fàbregas, Samir Nasri and Gael Clichy.

The Gunners also brought in teenage wingers Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Ryo Miyaichi.

And although the Frenchman admits key departures from The Emirates left him with no choice but to sign some older players this summer, he has made it clear that his policy of developing young talent remains unchanged.

“It starts again because we have taken five players, but we have invested as well,” said Wenger, whose side travel to Blackburn Rovers on Saturday.

“Our highest investment has been in Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, a young player. We have the work permit for Ryo Miyaichi – we will not give up on our youth policy.

“We were a team on the up and that was not rewarded last year because we were a bit hungry to go for all four trophies. But the basic quality was there and we were certainly very close to winning last year.

“We were suddenly hit by major departures that were not planned so we had to review a little bit just with the injuries we had.

“We couldn’t survive without buying players and the players available had a bit more experience than what we usually do.”

The Arsenal manager added: “I judge myself by giving my best of intelligence, experience and commitment to the club and after I let other people judge what I do.

“At the end of the day you know yourself at the end of the season whether you took the maximum out of the team and their potential.”

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