Arsene Wenger is adamant that Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil will not be allowed to leave Arsenal in the transfer window.
The future of the Gunners’ star duo remains the subject of intense speculation, with both entering the final year of their contracts at Emirates Stadium.
Sanchez has been heavily linked with Manchester City and Bayern Munich, while Ozil has also been tipped for a potential move away following Arsenal’s failure to qualify for the Champions League.
But Wenger, who signed a new two-year contract to stay on as Arsenal manager this week, says neither player will be sold before next season begins.
“This summer, first of all they will stay at the club and hopefully we can extend their contract,” Wenger said when asked about Sanchez and Ozil’s futures.
When pressed on whether they would leave, he replied: “No. You cannot weaken the club and weaken the team. You want to strengthen the team. Unless you find a player of the same calibre and if they absolutely want to leave…
“I believe, at the moment, we’re not on that front. We’re focused on keeping the team together and to see how we can strengthen the team.
“When you sign a contract somewhere, you commit to give your best until the end of the last day of that contract. I would say ‘why should they not give their best?’.
“The interest of any player is always to play football and well, even more so at the end of your contact. If you’re a winner, you want to win the game you’re playing.”