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Arsenal Defend Suarez Bid as Wenger Hints at January Spree.

Arsenal chairman Sir Chips Keswick has defended the club's summer pursuit of Liverpool striker Luis Suarez.

During an open question and answer session during the club's annual general meeting at the Emirates Stadium, the Gunners hierarchy including Keswick, chief executive Ivan Gazidis, majority shareholder Stan Kroenke and manager Arsene Wenger were consulted regarding a string of issues.

Most pertinent was the pursuit of Suarez, who has been handed substantial Football Association bans for racial abuse and for biting Chelsea's Branislav Ivanovic since moving to Liverpool in January 2011, and Arsenal says the move was subject to club's own internal standards.

"Any player must adhere to our standards," ( Keswick said at the AGM . "Our ethics are as strong as ever."

Liverpool rejected two bids from Arsenal for Suarez in the summer as the Uruguay international attempted to force his way out of Anfield after the club failed to qualify for the Champions League.

Suarez has regularly courted controversy during his career in English football but will remain at Liverpool this season after settling his differences with the club's hierarchy.

Arsenal have often been accused of lacking ambition in the transfer window, instead preferring to invest in younger players.

The addition of Mesut Ozil from Real Madrid for a record fee has somewhat altered Wenger's frugal reputation in the market, while the Arsenal board have publically backed another spending spree in January.

And the Frenchman, whose future at Arsenal was not discussed throughout the AGM, says buying new players is part of the club's plan to progress.

"Our huge ambition is to win the league, but our policy is based on three different levels," he said. "The first is to defend of philosophy of play - that can only be done by developing our own players. That has to be the core of our squad. Like Wilshere, Szczesny, Gnarby, Gibbs etc.

"The second has to be based on the intelligence of our eye. We need to use our connections and our scouting. For example no one knew Koscielny or Giroud but now they are internationals.

"The third part is to scout and buy recognised world class players like Ozil. You don't need a scout to sign Ozil just the money and we proved we aren't afraid to spend money with Ozil."
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Publication:International Business Times - US ed.
Date:Oct 17, 2013
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