Wednesday, November 29, 2023

Wenger happy with pressure of expectation

Arsene Wenger says he welcomes Arsenal being tipped for the title claiming it’s much better than being written off before the season has even begun.

The odds on the Gunners winning the Premier League for the first time since 2004 have been slashed from 5/1 to 7/2 by William Hill following the club’s triumph over Chelsea in the Community Shield; a state of affairs that puts them third in the bookies’ reckoning behind Jose Mourinho’s reigning champions and Manuel Pellegrini’s Manchester City.

Speaking on the eve of the new season the boss welcomed the pressure that comes with expectation.

“Yes, of course [there’s greater expectation], but we enjoy that,” he told his pre-West Ham press conference.

“Before we suffered sometimes from the fact that at the start of the season nobody considered us at all because we lost our best players. This period is over now so we are happy to be under this kind of pressure.”

Last year Chelsea stole an early march on the rest of the Premier League before grinding out results after Christmas that saw them fend off an exciting rally from Arsenal. Asked who he thinks will set the tempo this time out Wenger, who is embarking on his 20th season in England, noted that a surprise package isn’t out of the question.

He continued: “Who will it be this season? I don’t know. For a long period last year it was West Ham. When we played at Christmas at West Ham they were fourth in the league so it could be another surprise this season.

“Chelsea won it by a margin last year so they are the favourites. After that let’s see how it goes. After 15 games you will know more about who will win the Premier League.

“Last year after 12 games we were 15 points behind Chelsea, and in the next 26 we took 58 points and Chelsea 55. That means we missed our start to the season because it was after the World Cup.

“So let’s start strong this season… I believe we have the needed ingredients. But we have a tricky start as well because we have two derbies and Liverpool in the first three games, so we have a difficult schedule from the start.

“We need to maintain our game. That’s important as well – that we develop what we do well and do not stand still. That means we develop our cohesion, our passing game. If we are capable to keep the cohesion and the solidarity we have at the moment through the 38 games, we have a good chance.”

He’s not wrong there…

Related articles


Notify of

newest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

It’s good but he can’t blame last year on the world cup. Chelsea players went to the world cup too.


I think you’re wrong mate.

Chelsea’s squad is largely Brazilian, Serbian and Belgian. As we know only Argentina and Germany made it to the final and then DFB won it.

We had 3 World Cup winners, 2 of which were starters in the spine. Mertesacker captained most of last season’s games under extreme fatigue and growing expectation.

It’s very easy to say what a player or manager at the top level of performance should do. To execute the job however within certain limitations and things beyond your control is another thing entirely.


Err no. Per wasn’t a starter for Germany after the first couple of games, and Brazil played in the 3rd place game which was a day before the final.
So apart from Ozil the world cup isnt an excuse.


Merte wasn’t dropped until after the Algeria game and then played half the semi-final. He played 436 minutes in all (to Özil’s 654).

So – have another guess.

Cyril Washbrook

In addition to Erzengel’s point, I might also point out that the effect of the World Cup isn’t just about minutes on the pitch. It’s also about the fact that you don’t get a break from training and preparations either. Players train continuously during that period regardless of whether they are ultimately selected in the starting XI.

blue bird Gunner

What Izzymuzzet is saying is that chealsea world cup players also experienced the same level of continuous preparation and training for WC matches last summer. So WC is a lame excuse really


I think we should make Emirates a fortress this season. Teams should fear coming to our home. We should be able to grind out results no matter what. As a gooner from India, it is only my dream to support Arsenal from the stands one day. I hope all you gooners out there create the kind of atmosphere that used to exist during the Invincibles season at Highbury. I am really excited about this season. I hope we kick Chelsea’s and Jose’s arse. COYG!


I’d be happy to beat Swansea a couple times. Bogey team or what?


I was JUST thinking about Swansea last night and trying to remember our results against them since they came up in 2011. Very much a bogey team for us. Beat us once in 2011/12, once in 2012/13, twice last season. 2013/14 was alright, win and a draw although that draw killed off any lingering title challenge.


Remember when Bolton Wanderers used to be our bogey team? I hated the sight of that walrus-faced fat Sam!


To all the fans who are lucky enough to attend games, please make tons of noise and intimidate our opponents so that we can leave “The Library” tag to Chelsea and Manure.
Remember, you fans are part of the entertainment and should also give the team energy with your support
Up The Arsenal!


When he said he will win the title before his current contract expires, tells us how much confidence he has in his team. Lets hope he does. He deserves it after all that he has given to the club.


I haven’t felt this level of expectation since 2005 – the optimistic air about the club is great.
we have made great purchases, developed great potential and have an outstanding manager who has stayed steadfast to his vision.
The fanbase is rallied and our rivals are either in tranistion like Liverpool and Man Utd, Stagnating like Man City or just out of evil credit like Chelsea.
I feel the stars are aligned and the club can do great things this year.


Man Manny

I strongly believe we will mount a sustained challenge this season.
The boys are wiser and more experienced after last season. This showed in our community shield victory last Sunday and will play out more and more in the course of the season – the ability to see out games.
Another fact is that I expect better luck on the injury front; that was our second biggest undoing after the post world cup stress.
If we are lucky with injuries, we have as bright a chance as Chelsea and City.


“Before we suffered sometimes from the fact that at the start of the season nobody considered us
at all because we lost our best players. This period is over now so we are happy to be under this kind of pressure.”


I’m happy with this spirit of optimism too. Slightly fearful of course that we might not fulfill the hope, but no one ever won anything feeling pessimistic, so let’s cultivate this. We have the potential to play our most fluid football since 2004. Özil could quietly pull the strings in the number 10 role and we have enough quality options around him to make the most of it. I’ve long thought we could never win the league again under Arsene. Now I have a sneaking suspicion and an enormous hope that he can prove me wrong. Come on Arsenal!

Arseology - Reloaded

I’m also eagerly awaiting my big slice of humble pie served by Arsene.
I guess you can teach an old dog new tricks.


there was optimism for the title race when we signed Ozil but then it fell apart after the New Year. I’m not getting carried away!


l’m a hard-dying gooner from Ethiopia. arsenal have so many fans here. We compete here with Man utd fans, not with spurs fans like u since spurs has not that much fanbase here. So please the home fans try to make the Emirate stadium a fortress and be passionate like Dortmund, Galatasary stadiums.l don’t think we win the league with out a striker like suarez or Lewandowski, and a Virea like DM. what if Coquelin injured?? Arteta and Flamini are past their days. Giroud is not a 30 goal striker. l don’t understand why arsenal miss out on sheniederlin.

Naija Gunner

Am always optimistic and confident about us winning the league, always!



I think we could do the Double this year. And if we sign Benzema, I think we will.


It is a wonderful story at Arsenal at this moment.
Arsene lost the chance to win trophies over the last five years or more, due to financial constraint.
All he could do, was try his best to keep us in the top four, to keep additional cash coming in, to arrive at the place where we are now!
We have a “love story” in the club with the HFB, the BFG, the Wizard, Santi, Alexis, Ox, Boss, Le Coq, Hector, Mert, Theo etc etc………..all with their own stories and potential….Great time to be a Gunner!
Better than Eastenders!



We play better under pressure anyway. Its when its ‘too easy’ that we normally cock it up.

Adams Jnr

He was also asked if there’s any pressure being considered serious title contenders, to which Wenger replied: “No, we had much more pressure before when I knew I had at least to be in the top four and we did not necessarily have the potential to do it. The pressure is really on you when you know you are just on the border of achieving what is absolutely requested. When you know you cannot miss an inch or you are out. That is much more difficult.” He knew we weren’t good enough and he still managed to keep us in… Read more »

Share article

Featured on NewsNow

Support Arseblog

Latest posts

Latest Arsecast

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x