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Arsene Wenger: “Claude Puel will be good for Southampton”

The Arsenal boss has praised his former Monaco player

Manchester United v Southampton - Premier League Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images

Claude Puel will be a good appointment for Southampton and will challenge for the top four, according to Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger.

Puel played under the Gunners boss during his playing career-long spell at Monaco, even winning him over after Wenger had initially not made the defensive midfielder part of his plans.

But it was that iron-willed determination that forced him back into the first team setup, and Wenger has explained that the same qualities will make him a success on the South Coast.

Wenger told Arsenal’s official magazine: “He (Claude Puel) is a very strong manager and he tries to play good football, he is a fighter as well, so I am sure he will be good for Southampton and will bring them continuity.

“I had him as a player – he was a ball-winner, so he is a tenacious guy and he has now got strong experience. He has managed for a long time so I think Southampton as well will be a tough, tough team to beat.”

The Arsenal legend claimed that the Saints and West Ham will be fighting for Europe again, explaining: “The teams who for me were on the fringe of going into the top four last season were West Ham and Southampton.

“They’re two teams who will certainly have a word to say again.”