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Sep 4, 2012

Arnesen hits back at critics

Under fire Hamburg director of football Frank Arnesen has hit back at his critics.

Arnesen, 51, who has been openly criticised by Hamburg president Carl Jarchow, the club board, HSV legend Uwe Seeler and TV pundits for his transfer policy took a stand against his doubters on Monday.

Over the weekend Arnesen had been panned by former Germany internationals Stefan Effenberg and Mario Basler. Effenberg claimed Hamburg had bought too many players who were not up to Bundesliga standards, with Basler saying team coach Thorsten Fink was the "poorest sod" as he had to work with an incompetent director of football who lacks knowledge in the transfer market.

Speaking to Die Welt, Arnesen said: "Where are those people who spout out stuff like this? Not in Hamburg. Where do they get their information from? They have not talked to me. Do they know what is happening in Hamburg? No. And that's why I am not interested in what they have to say. Take my word for it! In one ear and out the other."

Hamburg lost both their opening matches without scoring a goal and crashed out of the DFB-Pokal against third tier club Karlsruher SC. Arnesen, however, remains full of confidence.

"We have a very good squad. Now it's time to prove it," Arnesen said. "I don't say we want to win the league, finish fifth or tenth. It is about playing good and successful football."

Arnesen believes the side is in a far better position following the acquisition of his top three targets Milan Badelj, Peter Jiracek and Rafael Van der Vaart.

Reports that Arnesen had mostly been made redundant were something he couldn't help laughing about, and he added: "If it's about players, I talk to manager Thorsten Fink and then make a decision."

The director of football went on to explain why he was not directly involved with the Jiracek transfer. Arnesen fell out with Wolfsburg boss Felix Magath over a transfer last year, causing the Dane to believe it was better that Jarchow made the phone call.

"I had already talked to Tottenham but they were not willing to sell Van der Vaart. When the situation changed, we worked hard on the transfer as a team. It is not about egos - it is about accomplishing our goals together," Arnesen explained.

Hamburg face Frankfurt after the international break, and will be hoping to start winning having lost their opening two league games.

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