Per Mertesacker recently spoke about the media criticism Arsene Wenger faces and seemed absolutely outraged.
The centreback, who’s currently sidelined with a knee injury, used the example of when Arsenal beat Ludogorets 6-0 at the Emirates and then drew 0-0 to Middlesbrough days later. He doesn’t seem to understand why the media’s view changed so abruptly.
“To me, Arsene Wenger is way above any public criticism. A coach who has been with a club for 20 years, and has developed and shaped the club decisively — where do you find that today?” the 32-year-old told Spox.
“You have to look at the bigger picture and he deserves the highest respect here. Criticism in the media is rushed these days, it’s too closely connected to the results and sadly it’s often not that knowledgeable.
“You beat Razgrad in a midweek fixture, and three days later you receive fundamental criticism for a draw at home to Middlesbrough. How much have the team, manager, and club really changed for such a different perception?”
Mertesacker’s view on the media’s treatment of our manager is the same as most Gooners’. I think it bothers us 100x more than it actually bothers Wenger but still, it’s good to see his own players, particularly the captain of the club, have his back.
The German’s contract is due to run out at the end of this season and although he’s admitted we haven’t set a date to talk about extending it yet, he claims it remains his priority.
The big guy should be back in the new year although the dates on that are a little hazy. At first the boss said three-to-four months, then five and now we’ve not heard a great deal for a while. The general consensus is January 2017 though.