English Premiership

Koscielny: Arsenal can compete

2016-08-22 19:30
Laurent Koscielny (Getty Images)

Cape Town - Laurent Koscielny says Arsenal can compete for the Premier League title this season, despite kicking off the season with a loss and a draw.

The Frenchman, who missed the 4-3 loss to Liverpool on the opening day of the new season, admits that they face strong competition from club's who have heavily strengthened during the off-season.

Arsenal were again criticised for their seeming reluctance to spend heavily on big-name players, with only Granit Xhaka, Rob Holding and Takuma Asano joining the club this summer.

But Koscielny, who was rushed back in action for the 0-0 draw with champions Leicester on Saturday, is adamant his team will be as competitive as ever this term.

He said: "Always. We are Arsenal - we fight for the title. Every game we play we want to win the game.

"This season will be very difficult because of the top clubs spending a lot of money on transfers, it's unbelievable.

"But sometimes the collective can be better than individual players. So we want to keep our philosophy and play football."

Responding to questions as to his absence in the loss to Liverpool, the 30-year-old explained: "You could see last week we lost Aaron Ramsey with an injury and now he's out for one month.

"When we have a summer tournament it's the same for every other team, not just for Arsenal. I'm sure every other team is the same.

"The players come back later and need more time to be fit, to be ready for the game.

"Last week (we didn't play) because we weren't fit and it was important to have one more week for training to be fit this week, and you can see, no one got injured."


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