The comments from Arsene Wenger today have a little more than a hint of attention deflection – almost urging the press to focus on him and his failings rather than go to town on certain members of the squad that haven’t justified his, not always well placed, faith.
“We feel more frustrated than ever because we are closer than ever to winning this league. Of all the trophies, the most important above all for me is the league and this year we had the quality to win it.
“The unfortunate thing is that there are plenty of moments to look back at with regret. We missed many opportunities.
“The players gave everything and I am responsible for the results so if there is someone to blame, it’s me. I have to stand up for the results and the way that we play and the way that we behave, and that has not changed since last Sunday.”
I do feel rather sorry for the manager at the moment. He looks frail, tired and ready for a long break. Admittedly he has not helped his own cause in many cases but I really do think that he recognises the next summer is key. Many of you may contest this but he is well aware that Liverpool, City, United and Chelsea are looking to strengthen considerably this summer and Arsenal can’t afford to be left behind.
For the first part of this now six year trophy drought, Wenger did brilliantly to keep us competitive whilst starting to bring through the first talents from the youth system that he completely overhauled years ago. It will still be many years until we see the true results from that I think – Jack Wilshere is an advert for Arsene’s belief in youth and I don’t think his eye for talent can be doubted at all.
Over the past two years the case is different, Wenger has had the cash at his disposal but has looked to finish the job without using it – for the first time he has maybe based a team around one single player in Cesc Fabregas and the core of that team has been decimated so often due to injuries to the likes of Vermaelen, Djourou, Gallas, Cesc and Robin van Persie. I have a gut feeling that now he knows he has to use the resources available, it isn’t admitting defeat, its looking to diversify and build on the competitiveness that we maintained after moving stadium.
I think that right now people may just need to lay off the guy for a bit, give him this chance to change his approach and take this stagnating team forward.