Wenger rejects M'Vila talk, backs Diaby

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is not interested in signing France midfielder Yann M'Vila, instead backing Abou Diaby to succeed.

Rennes anchorman M'Vila, 22, has been a long-term transfer link for the Gunners, with reports stepping up due to the chronic injury problems suffered by Diaby and Jack Wilshere.

But, speaking from Arsenal’s pre-season tour of the Far East, Wenger insisted that Diaby – who is fit and ready to play against a Malaysia XI – will be key to the club’s fortunes.

“No [I am not interested],” Wenger said in reference to M'Vila. “We wait on Diaby and Wilshere.

“When you look we have [Alex] Song, [Aaron] Ramsey, [Francis] Coquelin, Wilshere, Mikel Arteta and Diaby.

“In defensive midfielders and box-to-box players we are not short if they are all coming back. If we have setbacks in pre-season it could be different.”

Diaby, it seems, is key to Wenger’s thoughts. He plays in the same position as M'Vila and the French coach is convinced the 26-year-old is the best man for the job – despite a dreadful injury record that has seen him play 21 Premier League matches in the past two years.

“He is the first player who would be on the France team-sheet in midfield when he is fit. Laurent Blanc said that before the European Championship and he waited a very long time to know if he could play or not. But he couldn't,” Wenger added.

“You can't imagine how happy I am firstly to have him in the squad, because he is an exceptional player. I am cautious but confident because he had two hard weeks and came through it well.”