Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger claimed that the Gunners made a strong performance to beat Stoke City 2-0 on Saturday (12 September), but lamenting the number of opportunities ruined to get an even easier victory. The boss, nevertheless, hailed Theo Walcot and Olivier Giroud after they scored one goal each while backing his decision against signing another number nine because he "did not find anyone" in the market.
The boss was urged to bolster his attack during the summer transfer window after the Gunners just scored three goals in their previous four league games of the campaign. But Walcot and substitute Giroud responded in the visit of Stoke after scoring one goal each to give Arsenal their first home game of the campaign.
"They scored so it is good for them but I believe we put in a very strong performance. Technically we had our moments in the first half and we played the football we wanted to play and created several chances. Maybe if I wanted to be critical I could say that that there is too big a difference between the number of chances we created and the number of goals we scored but that will come quickly once you win your games at home," Wenger admitted after the game.
"I was not worried about that as I knew that would not last forever with the number of chances we create. We are the team who has created the most chances since the start of the season and we had 30 shots on goal today and continuously we created chances today from the first to the last minute and the players had the quality to score so at some stage that would have come."
The French boss had reiterated that he dint's sign another number nine claimed because the market didn't offer anyone better than the ones he has in his ranks – even though Danny Welbeck's injury have left him with just two available in his ranks.
"(Welbeck injury) was a shock of course. I think Welbeck can play in every position up front and he is a fantastic guy. To see him work for three or four months and then be ruled out again for three or four months is difficult to understand but we have to deal with that. I can understand that people say that we have to look out for a striker but we honestly did not find anyone," he said.
Wenger, nevertheless, backed Walcott to be a prolific goalscorer after he handed him the number nine role ahead of Giroud in the game. Asked about the reasons behind his decision, he added: "To use the movement of Walcott."
"I know Stoke are a compact, organised team in their own half and Theo could find little pockets to get in their and maybe that you get two or three chances to counter attack at home so maybe you can use that. He scored a great goal because you needed technical quality to score and timing in the finish. It is good Giroud came on scored as well," he said. "He has chances. He can be a prolific goalscorer. When you come out of the game and look at the amount of chances he scored. The bigger the belief he has to score the more he will score. But he gets in good situations."