Speaking after Arsenal’s 2-0 win over Everton at the weekend, Arsene Wenger has seemingly criticised fans for who have expressed disenchantment at recent results and performances.
The victory at Goodison Park was only the second in nine games, and the Gunners remain 11 points behind leaders Leicester in the Premier League table.
Following the Everton game, the Arsenal manager said he could live with criticism from the media, but suggested the lack of support from fans was hurtful and difficult to take.
“What hurts me is that at the important moment of the season we played in a sceptical environment,” he said.
“I think after the Tottenham game where we played a very good game with 10 men against 11 and came back to 2-2, I couldn’t understand why – at the moment when you need everyone behind the team – we had to hit that storm.
“From the media, OK. From our fans? It is a bit more difficult to take.”
He did, however, acknowledge his and the players part in helping to turn that around.
“I never complain about critics, especially when they are turned against me,” he continued. “But we have to get the fans behind us with our attitude, and make sure that they stand behind the team until the end of the season.”
Play more often like we did against Everton, and there’d be fewer issues. It’s the repetitive nature of recent performances like Swansea, Man Utd, Watford, Chelsea etc, that have shaped opinion more than anything else.
With more or less two weeks until the next league game at home against Watford (again), there’s time to get people back on side and generate an atmosphere, but it’s what his players do on the pitch when we kick off that will really have the most impact.