Arsenal transfers: Wenger on Mata and other potential signings

Arsenal transfers: Arsene Wenger admits he is a keen admirer of Juan Mata amid speculation Gunners could swoop for playmaker

juan mata
Juan Mata's future has been a source of speculation in recent weeks

Arsene Wenger has revealed he is a keen admirer of Juan Mata amid speculation that Arsenal could swoop for the Chelsea playmaker before next week’s transfer deadline.

Uncertainty over Mata’s future has been rife in recent days after the 25-year-old was omitted from the starting line-up for Chelsea’s goalless draw against Manchester United on Monday night.

Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho dismissed the suggestion that the Spain international could be set to leave Stamford Bridge immediately after the game, insisting such stories were “nonsense”.

However, reports claiming that Mata’s father was a guest at The Emirates on Tuesday night as Arsenal booked their place in the Champions League group stage with a 2-0 win over Fenerbahce led to speculation the Gunners could be interested.

And speaking after the game, Wenger said: “I have heard like you, because I watched the game last night, that Juan Mata could be on the market. I don’t know. There’s anyway a reluctance in England to sell to each other.

“Does that frustrate me? Yes, I like him.”

Wenger, whose side host local rivals Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday, continued: “Everybody knows we are in the market. The whole world knows that now. I cannot be more creative than that, because all has been said and nothing has been concluded.

“I don’t know what to say anymore. I’ve said it all before. We want now to prepare for the next game and leave all the rest. We work hard on it and we do the maximum [to strengthen].”

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