The players have held a meeting without Wenger to try and figure out a solution, the manager has held a meeting with the players to warn them their futures are at risk while Peter Hill-Wood has said Wenger has overstayed his welcome at the club as the soap opera that is Arsenal FC rolls on.

Guardian Sport Wenger Times up 3 march 2018
Guardian Sport front page 3 march 2018

On Friday we were all treated to reports, from the Guardian, that the players held a meeting after the first defeat to Manchester City.

It was a further blow to Arsene Wenger who, despite being battered and bloody is not even looking for his towel, never mind ready to throw it in.

David Hynter reported that one senior player became so choked up another had to take over. It is a story they followed up in their Saturday edition.

“We are a big club,” Hynter reports an unnamed senior player as saying. “But we need more help from the coaches.”

Guardian Sport Wenger Times up 3 march 2018 2
Guardian Sport 3 march 2018 2

Step across to the Telegraph and they are reporting that Wenger has placed the onus on the playing staff, telling them they must ‘prove they belong at Arsenal’ after a lengthy dressing room ‘inquest’.

Jeremy Wilson goes on to report that the manager told the players ‘their future was on the line.’

Daily Telegraph Wenger tells palyers 3 march 2018 2
Daily Telegraph 3 March 2018

The Daily Mail also have an EXCLUSIVE covering Wenger’s ‘inquest’ after the game against Manchester City as both camps continue to brief the media.

Hill-Wood’s comments are perhaps as surprising as they are damming.

The former chairman, who stepped down due to health concerns in 2013, has been one of Wenger’s strongest supporters since appointing him to the manager’s job in 1996.

daily star wenger outstayed welcome 3 march 2018
Daily Star back page, 3 March 2018

“He has done fabulously well, it is just he overstayed his welcome,” the Star reported in their exclusive with Hill-Wood, a man whose family have been involved with Arsenal since his grandfather was made chairman in 1929.

“I am not very happy about what is going on. I think that there probably ought to be a change of management.

“I find it very sad because he was the great love of many and then it (overstaying his welcome) has destroyed it all.”

Wenger, meanwhile, is still ready for a fight and believes he can change things, despite all evidence to the contrary. “I am always ready for a fight,” he told the media ahead of the game against Brighton on Sunday.

“I am, of course, very disappointed but I have experienced these situations before.

“I have been in these situations in my life and I know what it takes – experience and the desire to change things.”

Wenger has often said that he will step down when he is no longer able to get the maximum from his players but despite this being the case for a number of years, save a few one-off games at Wembley when the players were able to motivate themselves to pick up silverware, he seems incapable of realising that time has long since arrived.

Is this all just paper nonsense?

While it’s easy to dismiss much of what we read in the papers, having run this site for 10 years there are a few things I’ve learned about which papers you can trust on which subjects.

The Guardian are not given to making up quotes about anything and the Telegraph have established themselves as one of the most reliable sources around for inside Arsenal information.

The Daily Star, as you know, is a rag of the highest order, but Hill-Wood has a long association with the redtop, often giving them exclusives even when he was still at Arsenal, thanks to his long friendship with the now deceased editor, Brian Woolnough.

If there is little else you can believe in the Star, you can trust their Hill-Wood connection.

You all know the Daily Mail’s reputation, but their sport department stands apart from the rest of the paper as rather reputable, for the most part. Their exclusive, covering the same story as the Telegraph, hints at briefings coming from inside the club as battle lines are drawn.