Belfast Telegraph

Arsene Wenger comes out all Gunners blazing over Bolton's Gary Cahill

By Jim van Wijk

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is on a collision course with Bolton over the proposed signing of Gary Cahill. The Gunners have tabled an offer for the England defender which Bolton have described as "derisory".

Bolton say the offer is £6m but Wenger insists that figure is incorrect. "That number is wrong," said Wenger. "It is completely wrong. Every negotiation is between two parties and you only have to sell the player if you are all right with the price. In this case the information is below what has been spoken about.

"You only have to sell the player if you are all right with the price. It is not true. You can believe Bolton or you can believe me. It's not right. It's not the truth. If Bolton can say I am lying I am ready to confront them. The truth is that we never speak about our negotiations.

"If a club doesn't want to sell a player it can keep him. When we sign a player we come out here and tell you and keep the price a secret.

"They do not need to sell the player, they can keep him. If you ask do I want to buy your house and you are not happy with the price you say no, that's it. Why should you feel insulted? I don't understand. If the player is not for sale they can keep him. I don't understand the problem.

"If we want to buy the player we buy the player. I do not have to explain for how much."

There is no doubt Arsenal could do with a defender of Cahill's stature, however, considering they go into tomorrow's clash with Manchester United at Old Trafford struggling for numbers.

Centre-half Thomas Vermaelen will have a fitness test today and Laurent Koscielny only came through a fitness test on his back problem yesterday.

Sebastien Squillaci is also out, along with Kieran Gibbs (hamstring), Abou Diaby (ankle) and Nicklas Bendtner, who also has an ankle problem, but Wenger does not believe it will stop the wantaway striker leaving the club.

Alex Song, Gervinho and Emmanuel Frimpong, meanwhile, are suspended.

Wenger admits that could cost his side dearly, especially in midfield, with Cesc Fabregas and Samir Nasri sold, and with Jack Wilshere still sidelined with a troublesome ankle injury.

Wenger said: "The discipline has cost us a lot since the start of the season. If we had mastered our responses and reactions we could have six points. It's even more important to get results and not let Manchester United away too early. It is vital for us to have a good game on Sunday.

"Sometimes at the beginning of the season it is like a Western film, the players come out stronger. But we have shown that we have mental strength and good unity to fight. I'm confident we will be solid on Sunday and have a big performance."

On being drawn with Marseille, Olympiakos and German champions Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League group stage, Wenger added: "We got exactly the pot four we didn't want. I was surprised Dortmund were in pot four. I was amazed."

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