Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has hit back at protestations by Jose Mourinho that Manchester United are being left behind in the title race for lack of spending power compared to their rivals. The Red Devils have spent close to £300m ($400m) under the Portuguese manager but still find themselves potentially 15 points behind Manchester City, with an entire half of the season still to play.
In comparison, Arsenal made a profit last summer having sold Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain to Liverpool on deadline day. The Gunners have always been among the lowest spenders among the top six, partly owing to their Stadium move from Highbury in 2006 which restricted their spending.
United were held by Burnley on Boxing Day where they came back in the second half having gone two goals behind. Substitute Jesse Lingard scored a brace as the Red Devils staged a remarkable comeback but were unable to take all three points, allowing City the opportunity to pull further away from the crowd.
The north London club have not won the title since 2004 owing to their inability to match up to their rivals and Wenger has no sympathy for Mourinho, who has to go through what Arsenal have had to over the last few years.
"I have been in that position for 21 years so I can't start to complain now," the Frenchman said in his pre Crystal Palace press conference, as quoted by the Express. "There have always been three or four teams richer than I am. I've learned to cope with that. We deal with our own situation as well as we can. Man City, Chelsea and Man United are all richer than us. You have to find ways to be successful."
Both Manchester clubs were heavily involved in the market last summer, bringing in a bulk of players to propel their title charge. City spent over £100m ($134m) this summer on three full-backs – Benjamin Mendy, Danilo and Kyle Walker, something which was highlighted by Mourinho in his rant.
The Portuguese was not skint in the market by any means, bringing in the likes of Romelu Lukaku, Victor Lindelof and Nemanja Matic – and was keen on adding a fourth but was priced out of a move for Ivan Perisic by Inter Milan.