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Wenger: Don't Blame Us About Cole

Ashley Cole wants to leave Arsenal for Chelsea, Arsenal says they're willing to let him go, and Chelsea desperately wants to sign him, yet after more than a month of negotiations, the teams still cannot agree to a fee. Arsenal coach Arsene Wenger says it's not their fault if the deal fails to go through. "I don't know what's stopping it - certainly not our demands," he said. But one wonders what he means by that. Is he saying that their asking price is fair? Is he saying that money should be no object for Chelsea? Arsenal is asking for $47 million to transfer Cole to Chelsea. He is certainly one of the world's best left-backs, but only Chelsea signaled any interest in signing him. It just shows that Arsenal isn't motivated to sell one of its best players to a rival club. Meanwhile, Chelsea only offered $31 million for the player. It's interesting that a club that usually has no problem overpaying for its players suddenly has an issue with Arsenal demanding such a high transfer fee. The deal does not have long to close, either, as there are less than two weeks remaining in the summer transfer period. Meanwhile, the English Premier League season starts this weekend, and Cole has been left out of the Gunners' squad set to face Aston Villa this weekend; he's also been left out of the squad's photo for the season. Said Wenger, "We are not at the end of August and still nothing has happened so why should it happen now?" He added that if Cole stays he would have to fight for his place just like everybody else.

Read the whole story at Reuters UK »

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