Former Gunner Martin Keown reckons that Arsene Wenger needs to listen to Troy Deeney’s criticism of Arsenal, whether he likes it or not.

Watford’s penalty scorer, Troy Deeney, had a dig at Arsenal after his side beat them 2-1 on Saturday, claiming that if you go in to the first challenge hard enough, they’ll back off.

“Arsene Wenger needs to sit up and take notice at Troy Deeney’s claims that this Arsenal team can be bullied,” wrote Keown in his column for the Daily Mail.

“Deeney said that Arsenal lack ‘cojones’ and that if you go hard into the first challenge against them, they will back off.

“Very rarely does an opponent give you such an insight into your weakness. If you are an Arsenal player, that is pretty damning. Those comments got my blood boiling and I’m not even playing, so goodness knows what Wenger and the players must have thought.”

He later added, “Going forward, Wenger needs to recruit a different type of player who is prepared to graft and scrap. 

“Of course we want to see players who are great athletes and extremely skilful but Wenger needs more players in the mould of Sead Kolasinac — men who are solid, determined and direct.

“Right now, this Arsenal team look a million miles away from becoming champions.”

troy deeney petr cech
WATFORD, ENGLAND – OCTOBER 14: Troy Deeney of Watford celebrates as he scores their first and equalising goal from the penalty spot as Petr Cech of Arsenal look dejected during the Premier League match between Watford and Arsenal at Vicarage Road on October 14, 2017 in Watford, England. (Photo by Charlie Crowhurst/Getty Images)

It’s rare that opposition players are so loose-tongued with their tactics. However, it’s true and, as Keown says, Wenger needs to listen if he’s going to have any hope of turning this gutless lot into a proper team.

Wenger actually listening to anything anyone else has to say doesn’t seem likely. He’s stubborn and a bit arrogant, and while that’s worked for him in the past, now it just makes him look foolish.

The current team don’t look as if they can be bothered and, unlike the type of side Keown regularly featured in, won’t put their bodies on the line for their club. That’s if they even see Arsenal as ‘their club’ anymore since a few probably have one foot out the door.

If teams like Watford and players like Deeney find it so easy to play against the Gunners, you know you’ve got problems. So, why haven’t they been fixed yet?