Arsene Wenger - I did not lie over Danny Welbeck injury

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Wenger: Shortage of transfer solutions

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has denied that he misled people about the severity of Danny Welbeck's injury.

The striker has now been ruled out until Christmas with a knee injury - but Wenger says he told the truth when he informed the press on 27 August that Welbeck was "progressing well".

"I am surprised that people accused me of lying. I did not know Welbeck had had a bad setback," Wenger said.

"I gave you the information I had. I did not lie to you."

Wenger had been hopeful that Welbeck would have been fit to return after the recent international break - but that changed soon after his weekly Friday news conference.

"I heard late on Friday night [27 August] that his condition had not evolved as well as we thought," he added.

"He had needed specialist and needed further investigation."

Arsenal revealed the extent of the injury suffered by Welbeck after the transfer window had shut.

Injury to Welbeck leaves Olivier Giroud as the Gunners' only recognised striker fit for selection, with Theo Walcott and Alexis Sanchez having been mainly used as wide players.

Arsenal knew the extent of the 24-year-old's problem before the transfer window closed on Tuesday, 1 September but did not reinforce their attack.

"The solutions we had were not convincing at all," Wenger added. "I have made more than 300 transfers and every time it's a decision to make.

"You either find someone who strengthens your squad or not. Whether we have players injured or not doesn't change the problem, You also have to be brave enough to say no."

Wilshere suffers fresh setback

Jack Wilshere
Wilshere had been expected to return for Arsenal after the international break

Wenger also said midfielder Jack Wilshere's recovery from a hairline fracture in his right ankle was going slower than expected, and the 23-year-old would miss Saturday's match at home to Stoke.

Wilshere, who missed five months of last season after undergoing two operations to repair ligament damage to his left ankle, suffered the injury in pre-season training in August.

"I expected him to be back and available after the international break but unfortunately he had a little setback," Wenger said.

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