Wenger regrets missing out on defender, calls for defensive focus

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Arsene Wenger says he’s pleased with his transfer business in January but admits he didn’t get everything that he wanted.

It was confirmed yesterday by West Bromwich Albion that Arsenal failed with a late bid for Northern Ireland international Jonny Evans as the Gunners looked to reinforce their leaky defence

Speaking ahead of Arsenal’s clash with Everton, Wenger admitted that he is concerned about the number of goals being conceded and that his squad will have to solve the situation by focusing more on the pitch.

“Yes [I regret missing out on a defender], because our defensive numbers are not good enough,” said Wenger.

“That’s where we needed some possible strengthening because we have to improve our defensive numbers.

“If we want to go in the top four we have to improve our offensive and defensive numbers.”

He added: “I believe we have to find an internal solution to our defensive problems. That’s everybody putting more effort in.

“Overall, I’m happy with the way things went in the transfer market.

“[Did I get] Everything? No. But what I wanted to do, we have done. I couldn’t do everything, I wanted to do more.”

Arsenal have shipped 34 goals this season; the same number as bottom club West Brom. Wenger knows that if his side are going to close down an eight point gap on the Champions League places, his side can’t afford to take their eye off the ball as they did in Tuesday’s night’s 3-1 defeat at Swansea.

“It’s not a lack of effort [from the players], it’s a lack of focus in vital moments of the game,” he noted.

“I feel that sometimes we do it well and sometimes not. It’s always difficult. For example, at Swansea we had 75 per cent possession, you always think to attack, to attack and you forget to defend when you lose the ball.

You’re so much obsessed by wanting to win the game that you forget sometimes the balance.

The league is divided in two now [between teams with] 30 per cent possession of the ball and 70 per cent possession of the bal. There’s two kind of teams, it’s a 70: 30 league now.

“The 70 teams doesn’t always win, they lose many games as well against the 30 teams.”

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