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"Three who were important in our midfield. Nasri, Fabregas and Wilshere have all been lost and they were the basis of our midfield last season," continued Wenger.
"We've had to reconstruct our midfield entirely because Wilshere won't be back until January. Still, we've disappointed this season so far, given what's expected of us, but I think we're on the up again."
Wenger admitted that simple economics meant that players wanted to leave Arsenal because there was more money on offer elsewhere.
"It's not that (players have to leave to win titles)," he said. "The problem isn't that. Frankly, if you compare what Manchester City have won in the past and what Arsenal have won, then you don't go to Manchester City to win titles. Players go to Manchester City because they pay much better than Arsenal.
"They are a force clearly, because they have exceptional financial clout."