SportSoccer

Wenger already facing a striker crisis ahead of new season

SoccerBy Kevin Palmer
Giroud handed an extended holiday by Wenger
Giroud handed an extended holiday by Wenger

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has admitted he could be short of strikers in the opening weeks of the season, after confirming he will hand his Euro 2016 star an extended rest.

With Olivier Giroud set to be handed a one-month break after playing for France in last weekend's Euro 2016 final for France, the absence of Danny Welbeck and possible lay off for Alexis Sanchez after he picked up an ankle injury playing for Chile at the Copa America leaves Wenger short of attacking options.

Theo Walcott or Joel Campbell could be thrown into the first team for what is an enticing first game of the Premier League season against Liverpool on August 14th, yet both players face an uncertain future at Arsenal and may be sold this summer.

The striker crisis piles the pressure on Wenger to sign a top class forward ahead of the new season, with the Arsenal boss insisting his thread bear forward line cannot be rushed back into action too early.

"You consider the rest time because France had a long, long go and I believe that they need four weeks' holiday because they need to recover from that," Wenger told Arsenal Player.

"It takes you two or three weeks to regenerate... to recover completely, and they need to come back with hunger. That disappointment to lose a final, it takes some time to recover from that.

"I believe the club benefits from experiences at the top level, and the mental experiences as well that they have gone through with such a huge pressure. Of course, in the longer term you benefit from that."

Wenger has been linked with a move for Lyon forward Alexandre Lacazette in recent months, but his hefty price tag is reported to be a stumbling block in any potential move to Arsenal.