Premier League

Wenger - Toure not for sale

Emirates Stadium boss pours praise on defender

Toure: Highly rated by Wenger

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Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has reiterated that Kolo Toure is not for sale by stating that he would 'hate' to see the defender leave.

Toure has been linked with a move away from Emirates Stadium in the January transfer window and the Gunners vice-captain has requested a transfer.

Arsenal chairman Peter Hill-Wood turned down the request and Wenger has now revealed how highly he rates Toure, who turns 28 in March.

The centre-back was a member of Arsenal's 'Invincibles' in 2003/04 and Wenger admits that the day will come when Toure is forced to leave, but the Frenchman hopes that is not anytime soon.

"He is the longest-serving player at the club and I would hate to see him go because of his quality," Wenger said in the Daily Star.

"We all have to go one day, but Kolo is 28. He is very honest. He is a great person. I rate him, I like him.

"Apart from not playing him sometimes I never have a problem with him. But that is part of being a manager - you can only play 11.

"As for the transfer rumours, you watch him every day and he works like mad with his commitment."