Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 31 July 2014

Arsenal chasing 'special' striker

Arsene Wenger has led Arsenal to the league summit

Manager Arsene Wenger admits Arsenal are "on alert" for a "special" forward addition as the transfer window opens, but stressed the club are not looking to replace lead man Olivier Giroud.

The Gunners head into 2014 top of the Barclays Premier League by just a single point from Manchester City, but will host Cardiff today without Giroud, who has an ankle problem, and full-back Kieran Gibbs (calf).

However, Theo Walcott, Tomas Rosicky and Jack Wilshere are all understood to have shrugged off minor injury concerns and so will be available for selection.

While Wenger is confident his squad does have the needed strength in depth to finally last the distance in the title race, the Arsenal manager maintains anyone who is brought in will have to be the right calibre of player – with Atletico Madrid frontman Diego Costa one reported January target.

"We are like many clubs, certainly (we are) on alert," Wenger said.

"If something special turns up we will not turn it down, but we are not as well desperate because we have a big depth in our squad.

"We have shown that because our midfield at West Ham and at Newcastle was completely different, we changed and we still managed to have a very strong team."

Wenger continued: "I am quite confident with our squad.

"As has been mentioned, maybe up front we are a bit shorter with specialised people because most of the big clubs have three specialised central strikers.

"We have only two because (Yaya) Sanogo is not ready yet, so maybe if that something special opportunity turns up over January, we will not turn it down, but everywhere else we are in no need at all (to buy)."

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