Wenger: I didn’t think Martial was for sale

Date published: Friday 25th September 2015 1:34

Anthony Martial: Joined Manchester United on deadline day

Anthony Martial: Joined Manchester United on deadline day

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has confirmed his prior knowledge of Anthony Martial but did not believe Monaco would sell the forward in the summer.

Martial’s agent, Philippe Lamboley, says Wenger had been tracking the 19-year-old for several years but did not attempt to sign him because he saw him as a winger.

Speaking at his weekly press conference on Friday, Wenger confirmed Lamboley’s comments but said he did not believe Monaco would part with Martial anyway, making any offer pointless.

“He was more of a winger in his whole career,” Wenger said. “He played the final part of last season as a striker.

“But Monaco’s statement was always that two players, Martial and (Layvin) Kurzawa, would not move. I thought they would maintain that, but in the end both of them moved.”

Martial has scored four goals in his first four games for Manchester United, a start that Wenger was not necessarily expecting from his fellow Frenchman.

“It’s a surprise because sometimes the start is difficult,” added Wenger. “To maintain that will be very difficult for him so he will have to have some understanding of that as well if he starts to score less.

“He has already set the expectation level very high. But I’m not surprised that he’s done well because he’s a very talented player.”

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