Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger hits out at rampant Premier League spending ahead of Liverpool clash: 'Football is not a financial competition'
- Liverpool take on Arsenal in Premier League opener at the Emirates
- Arsene Wenger has expressed his surprise at clubs' summer spending
- Manchester United and Manchester City's transfers exceed £300million
- Gunners boss insists the title cannot simply be bought by his rivals
Arsene Wenger has insisted that money alone will not secure Manchester United the Premier League title.
As Arsenal prepare for their season-opener against Liverpool at the Emirates Stadium on Sunday, Wenger has once again expressed his bemusement at the riches being spent by the Old Trafford club this summer.
And the Frenchman is convinced that paying out in excess of £150million on players will not guarantee United a return to the division's summit
The Arsenal manager is preparing his players for their Premier League opener on Sunday
Paul Pogba cost Manchester United £100m and took their total summer outlay past £150mMan United is the richest club in the world so not many teams can compete on a financial amount but I feel it doesn't make a difference because on the pitch we can compete and that is most important,' he said.
'It's not a financial competition, football.
'The financial competition does not always reflect specifically in the table. Leicester has shown that last year.'
Wenger claimed to be surprised rather than tired by the exaggerated spending of the rest of the league's top clubs.
While the Gunners boss has made just one high-profile acquisition since the end of last season - the £35m capture of Granit Xhaka from Borussia Monchengladbach - United, Manchester City and Chelsea have all invested heavily in their squads prior to the start of the new campaign.
Wenger believes football can still be won on the pitch and not just with money
Jose Mourinho will renew his rivalry with the Frenchman after taking over at United
Wenger expected an increase in transfer fees but is frustrated by this summer's rise
Arsenal are trying to complete a £30m to sign Skhodran Mustafi from Valencia
The Gunners are short on defenderS with Per Mertesacker ruled out for four months
Gabriel is also set for as long as eight weeks on the sidelines with an ankle problem
'It was difficult to imagine five or 10 years ago but maybe it's a consequence of the success and popularity of the Premier League.
'If your opponent pays £40m, if you want the player you have to pay £45m.
'We just try to compete at our level with all the assets we have.'
Meanwhile, Wenger would not comment on the impending arrival of Valencia defender Shkodran Mustafi at the Emirates.
Mustafi's agent said a deal between the player and the club had been agreed but Arsenal still need to finalise terms with the Spanish outfit.
The Gunners desperately need reinforcements in their defensive line after Wenger confirmed that Per Mertesacker would be out for four months with a knee injury and Gabriel will miss up to eight weeks with an ankle problem.
'Per Mertesacker is out for four months and Gabriel six to eight weeks, which is a bit better than expected because he doesn't need surgery,' he said.
'He ruptured his ankle ligament. At the start we thought it could be four months.'
Laurent Koscielny is the third Arsenal defender to be absent for the visit of Liverpool. He was given a longer break after helping France to the final of Euro 2016.
Laurent Koscielny has been ruled out of the game against Liverpool this weekend