Arsenal fans find Arsene Wenger’s post-match comments following Östersunds FK’s victory at the Emirates on Thursday more than a little concerning.
After the game, Wenger was ‘fuming’ with his players, claiming that they must believe that all they have to do is turn up after going 3-0 ahead in the first leg in Sweden, and the game’s already won.
And Arsenal fans aren’t having any of it.
“We were in trouble and in danger,” he said. “We were complacent, not focused, open when we lost the ball and no ideas when we had the ball. That’s why we were in trouble. People subconsciously think they have to just turn up to win but it doesn’t work like that.”
Firstly, this isn’t a new problem. Arsenal players, whoever they may be, have been struggling to motivate themselves in certain games for years. What’s worrying is that Wenger is the common demonstrator between all those players, yet doesn’t change anything.
The Frenchman is supposed to be motivating his men to go out there and perform. While they’re athletes and should have a certain amount of, oh I don’t know, drive to win matches and not play like crap, the manager has to… well, manage.
It’s no secret that Wenger is soft on his players. He doesn’t like shouting or confrontation. But surely there has to be something he can do to kick them into gear before a match.
Arsenal are under a microscope right now.
Secondly, the 68-year-old talks about being prepared. He claims Arsenal ‘seriously’ prepared for the Europa League match. But then uses ‘external circumstances’, like the 3-0 victory in Sweden and the Carabao Cup final on Sunday, as an excuse for losing.
“We prepared in a serious way but you have external circumstances, such as the fact we won the first game 3-0, we have a big game on Sunday and people subconsciously think they have to just turn up to win. But it doesn’t work like that,” he said.
These matches were always going to happen. They weren’t suddenly sprang upon him. Other teams have matches close together and they don’t let it affect them to that degree.
Plus, if they prepared, what’s the problem?
Here’s what Twitter had to say:
The same excuses all the time! Arsenal sign up Graham Potter as next manager
— Alex O (@AlexDotama) February 23, 2018
Why does he Wenger continuously tells us this stuff of rubbish after an abject performance from his team. What does he tell these players before games? Only 2 tell us such crap
— Asante Yeboah Yaw (@yawasantesaie) February 22, 2018
How many times have we heard that this season. 11 defeats so far
— ⭐️⭐️ DJ-Tiny ⭐️⭐️ (@DJtinyOFFICIAL) February 22, 2018
Whos fault is that for the first half? Wheres the motivation you stubborn old man
— Lee Adams (@Pumpkin_Eater94) February 22, 2018
How many times will this idiot say this ..
— Tolu Adigun-James (@tjames_emjay) February 23, 2018
Yes ignore the inherent flaws and pretend we weren’t embarrassed at home by a team like that. Wise up Wenger.
— Jim Devlin (@devlinjim) February 22, 2018
I’m genuinely sick of “focus on our next game”. Every time we have a bad performance, that gets said. What about saying “we need to reflect on tonight’s performance, understand where we went wrong and work hard to better ourselves tactically and mentally.”
— Chris Ritchie (@_Chris_Ritchie) February 23, 2018
Arsene ‘Emporers New Clothes’ Wenger!! Deluded!! #AFC
— Roger Croft (@crofty9) February 22, 2018