LONDON, January 8 – Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger revealed on Friday that Egyptian midfielder Mohamed Elneny’s proposed move from Basel has become “complicated”, but he still expects the deal to go through.
“It is complicated a little bit,” Wenger told a press conference ahead of his side’s FA Cup third-round tie at home to Sunderland on Saturday.
“But we are working hard on it and hopefully in the next two or three days we will get to the end of it.
“I don’t rule out anyone else (being signed), but he will be at least one of the signings that comes into an area where we are short at the moment.”
Elneny, 23, is an Egypt international and has been with Basel since 2013, helping the club to three successive Swiss Super League titles in that time.
Wenger dismissed reports linking his side with Watford striker Troy Deeney, as well as suggestions that Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain could leave the club to join Chelsea.
He also disclosed that Alexis Sanchez would not be fit to face Sunderland as he continues his recovery from a hamstring problem.
“The bad news of the week is that Alexis is not quite ready,” said the Frenchman, who is bidding to steer Arsenal to a third successive FA Cup success.
“It is a precaution because of his hamstring, and it takes a few more days. He’s not bad, but he’s not ready.”
Captain Mikel Arteta could start after overcoming a calf problem, but Jack Wilshere (leg), Francis Coquelin, Danny Welbeck, Santi Cazorla and Tomas Rosicky (all knee) remain sidelined.