We can add West Ham’s Dimitri Payet to the list of players Arsene Wenger has watched many times but ultimately failed to sign.
The Frenchman – scorer of nine goals and creator of eight more in the Premier League this season – is a free-kick specialist who has lifted the Hammers to the cusp of a Champions League place.
West Ham and Arsenal play on Saturday and Wenger has said ahead of the game: “He was a top talent, always, but had periods of being up and down.
“I’ve looked at him many times. I’ve known him for a long time. He played at Saint-Etienne and we watched him many times.
“I think he has all the attributes to be a top player, which he is, but he’s 29 years old already. He’s matured a lot and come back into the national team, which shows he was more consistent.
“But historically we always had a great number of creative players – we had Mesut Ozil, Santi Cazorla, Jack Wilshere, Aaron Ramsey – they are all offensive players and I’ve certainly forgotten a few, so we had the numbers.”
Wenger saying Arsenal didn't move for Payet because they already had Wilshere. Sounds like a guy pretending he watches European football.
— Greg Johnson (@gregianjohnson) April 7, 2016