Arsene Wenger says his squad have to accept that they operate in a competitive environment and that he’ll not be offering reassurances to Alexandre Lacazette just because he’s signed Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
The Frenchman broke Arsenal’s transfer record to land his compatriot from Lyon in the summer only to break it a second time this week to recruit the Gabon international from Borussia Dortmund.
Lacazette is the Gunners top scorer this season with nine goals, however, he’s struggled in recent weeks leading to suggestions that he could be benched in favour of the new boy.
“I don’t reassure people,” Wenger told press ahead of Arsenal’s game with Everton.
“We are in a competitive world. We have all chosen a job where it’s about competition, you have to fight for your places.
“You have to show the players respect and that you rate them but as well, they have to accept that we live in a competitive world.”
Despite his bullish attitude, Wenger made clear that there is more than enough room in his squad for two top-class strikers despite his proclivity for starting most games with a single attacker leading the line.
“We can play two up as well and one up. You forget that we lost three strikers. We lost Walcott, we lost Sanchez, we lost Giroud so you should understand why I brought at least one in.”
He added: “You need at least two top strikers to play in the Premier League because if one is injured you have a problem.”
On whether he could field Mesut Ozil and Lacazette alongside Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Aubameyang, he went on: “It’s always possible. Will I do it? I don’t know. I think it’s possible, yes.
“The motivation is to win the next game. It does not depend too much on who plays. The target is as well, to find a balance that allows everybody individually to express his talent.”