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ARSENE WENGER insists Arsenal will be ready for the start of the new season despite being hit with a series of summer setbacks.
But he will not be pulling the plug on gruelling pre-season tours – even though he admits they have taken a toll on his side.
The Gunners lost their Premier League opener last season at home to Liverpool with Wenger complaining they were not ready after giving so many players extra time off after Euro 2016.
With Alexis Sanchez, who is only due back in training today, and Mesut Ozil still in a contract dispute, it leaves things looking messy for the Gunners again.
But Wenger, who bizarrely described the contract issue as “ideal” on Sunday, said: “Pre-season tours are a necessary evil.
“That’s part of the modern game and we adapt physically to it.
“I have to say we travel in good conditions. Why don’t I put a stop to it? Because I’m sensible. And because I respect we sign big contracts with our sponsors and we adapt.
“It shouldn’t be used as an excuse for any bad result. We travel like everyone and we have no disadvantage because Liverpool, Chelsea, Man Utd – everyone does it. we are on even ground with everybody.
“We had a very good record as long as we didn’t travel. We always won our first games. Since we travelled we struggled a bit more.
“We are in the same line as every other team. Everybody travels. Look at the international games in Asia or in the States, it’s the big teams that play against each other.