Wenger: Gallas has Gunners future

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Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger refused to reveal the reasons behind his decision to strip William Gallas of the captaincy after his side crashed 3-0 to Manchester City at Eastlands.

Gallas did not travel with the squad after making critical comments about his team-mates in midweek, when he questioned their fighting spirit.

Wenger took exception to questions about the French defender's absence in his post-match press conference but told Radio 5 Live: "Of course he has a future at the club."

Wenger added: "I will not speak about William Gallas in a post-match interview. He is a player who did not play, so what can he do? Nothing.

"Why should we not talk about (Cesc) Fabregas and the other nine players who are not here. We can go on until midnight and I will give the same answer to the same question."

With Gallas absent and goalkeeper Manuel Almunia wearing the armband, City romped home thanks to goals from Stephen Ireland, Robinho and substitute Daniel Sturridge (penalty).

It was the Gunners' fifth league defeat of the season and their hopes of the title already look a distant dream but Wenger is trying to remain positive.

"Nothing disturbed us before the game. We had good focus and concentration. I believe it was a flattering victory for Manchester City," he said. "We were in control in the first half but then conceded a goal in stoppage time.

"That goal changed the game. City played a lot on the counter attack and we played into their hands. We lacked maturity and the second goal illustrated that. The third goal was a very soft penalty.

"We gave absolutely everything - we are not in the blaming culture. We stand up for our responsibilities."

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Stephen Ireland
Manchester City
Manuel Almunia
Daniel Sturridge
William Gallas

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