Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has, once again, denied he wants to sign Real Madrid forward Karim Benzema before the transfer window closes on September 1.
The veteran French coach told reporters on Friday morning that the recent speculation is all “media talk”. He added that Alexis Sanchez and Danny Welbeck - along with Olivier Giroud and Theo Walcott - provide him with enough options upfront.
“I never came out on Benzema,” Wenger was quoted as saying by PA Sport reporter Phil Duncan this morning. “It is just media talk. When Sanchez and Welbeck are back we feel we have the needed striking force.”
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Wenger previously denied interest in Benzema following last weekend’s 1-0 victory over Chelsea in the Community Shield at Wembley.
"No, honestly, no,” Wenger said in his post-match press conference. “I don’t know who brings that up."
Speculation intensified this week
A day later, Real Madrid boss Rafael Benitez said he expected Benzema to stay at the Bernabeu - although the Spaniard didn’t sound entirely convinced with his response.
"I think Benzema is going to stay with us,” Benitez was quoted as saying by BBC Sport. “I’m very happy with him."
That was then followed by an Italian journalist sensationally claiming that Benzema will join Arsenal this summer, signing a four-year deal with the Gunners worth €9 million-a-year.
Spanish football expert Graham Hunter, meanwhile, told talkSPORT that Arsenal could sign the France international if he told Real Madrid he wanted to leave.
Deal unlikely to happen
However, unless Arsenal throw an astronomical amount of cash at Real Madrid, it seems very unlikely this deal will happen.
Arsenal fans: do you need Karim Benzema to win the Premier League title? Have your say in the comments below!