Ray Parlour believes that the Arsenal legends are right to criticise the club.

Arsenal have come in for heavy criticism from several of their ex-players currently working in the media.

One of those ex-players, Ray Parlour, feels that those players are right to criticise as they set the standard the current crop of players need to meet.

“Thierry, Tony, Ian: those guys were probably the most influential players in Arsenal’s history and are entitled to their opinions,” Parlour told the Evening Standard.

“Whether it’s right or wrong, it probably doesn’t help the players or the crowd.

“However those legends set the standards. If you drop below those standards you have to expect criticism.

“Does it make for a good story around Arsenal? No, not at all. But again when you’re working in the media as Thierry does he is going to get asked controversial questions. He is going to say what he thinks, whether you like it or not. He can’t just sit on the fence.

“We want Arsenal to do well but we need them to show a bit more desire and passion to wear the shirt. That’s what we did. And we played so poorly sometimes… but when we did we managed to dig in and make sure we didn’t lose the game.”

The criticism got particularly bad after the 4-0 defeat at Liverpool last month and the final week of the transfer window.

Mesut Ozil responded to it with a statement on social media, and called for the legends to “stop talking and start supporting”.

Arsene Wenger then backed his players, saying that even the old players had their own flaws and weaknesses.

Parlour is correct in saying that the media’s role is to ask and answer tough questions. The likes of Ian Wright or Thierry Henry wouldn’t be successful if they didn’t give an opinion one way or another.

While the criticism hurts the manager and the players, the unfortunate reality is that it’s very easy to criticise Arsenal at the moment.

Until they prove people wrong, it’s not going to stop.

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News and feature writer with a BA in Creative and Professional Writing from the University of East London. Long-time Arsenal fan also following Sevilla and local side Southend United. You can find me on Twitter @jeinchy29 talking about Arsenal and the issues affecting the English game,