In the post-match interview following our narrow victory away against Burnley, Arsène Wenger admitted that Arsenal’s stoppage-time winner courtesy of Laurent Koscielny was “a little fortunate” as the hosts’ defensive work out of possession wasn’t rewarded with at least one point on the afternoon at Turf Moor.
Having dominated proceedings for large periods of the match itself, they were unable to break the deadlock and with time continuing to tick away, a goal looked increasingly unlikely.
Sean Dyche’s side were resolute at the back and equally threatening on the counter-attack, but Koscielny’s last-gasp winner helped seal all three points for Arsenal in a hard-fought match.
As quoted by FourFourTwo, Wenger told BBC Sport the following: “We are a bit fortunate today, because we are a bit jaded physically and made some technical mistakes. Burnley defended very well and they looked from every corner as if they could score.”
After their 2-0 win over Basel in midweek, it comes as no real surprise that the Arsenal side lacked a cutting edge in-front of goal. With that being said, the lack of runners in-behind the Burnley backline was worrying and the fact that Tom Heaton wasn’t tested effectively throughout, suggested that Arsenal’s forwards hadn’t done enough to win the game with moments of individual brilliance on their own.
“We wanted to win and knew it could be a big week for us and maybe we played with the handbrake and not enough freedom.”
When asked about the importance of the win, the club’s official website quoted him as saying this:
“It’s a big win because City lost today. We were five points behind them and when you are five points behind a top quality team, when you have an opportunity to get a bit closer you cannot miss it. And that would’ve been the negative aspect of our game today, had we not won.”
City’s unbeaten run, stretching to 11 matches in all competitions, had been ended by Tottenham away from home earlier in the afternoon. Arsenal players were aware of the result before kick-off, and the fixture had even more significance considering a key title rival had dropped points.
Burnley would’ve undoubtedly felt hard done by, given the manner of their defeat.
Wenger also adde, “I must say, I am long enough in the job to know that you feel disappointed if you are in Burnley’s shoes because they gave absolutely everything and you can understand that they are a bit gutted to lose a game like that because they had put all the effort in to get the result.”