Monday, May 20, 2024

Arsene Wenger post-game interview transcript on BT Sport

Arsene Wenger played up the performance of his defence as he faced the BT Sport cameras after this evening’s 0-0 draw at Leicester.

On the result…

I wanted to win the game and I think we gave absolutely everything to win the game. It was a game of high intensity where both teams gave absolutely everything. On that front, I believe when you conceded four goals last week we’ve shown a great defensive performance. Overall, we created the chances to win it. But you could see that they were not champions for no reason last year. It’s a team that’s well organised and it’s difficult to create chances.

On the Koscielny penalty incident…

Live it’s very difficult to tell, you need to watch it in slow motion to see what really happened.

On the Musa penalty incident…

Maybe [it was more of a lucky escape]. Then again it was on the line on the other side. Leicester is very good at provoking in the box, they got many penalties last year. You never know if it’s really a penalty or not.

On Koscielny’s performance…

Of course [he played well]. I believe the whole back four played well, he guided well the defence. He had an outstanding game. Rob Holding, Hector Bellerin, Nacho Monreal as well played very well.

On whether he’s close to signing anybody…

Yes, but I would say that spending is not in itself a quality. Spending and buying the right players is a quality. I’m a bit fed up to always respond to the same things, like ‘we don’t want to spend’. We analyse absolutely everything and after we have to make the right decisions. What we did historically always.

Does it matter that English sides pay over the odds for players…

What matters to me is when you have a club of 600 employees that you are sure you can pay everybody at the end of the month. That is the most important. If you have the money to spend £300 million you can do it. But at the end of the month you have to respect everybody who works for the club and pay everybody.

On the season ahead…

It’s a long, long road. We had a difficult start with Liverpool and Leicester. We are not completely ready, but you see signs already that the team has picked up from our last performance. Mentally they responded very well.

I’m very happy to work with these players and I’m sure we’ll show our quality from now on.

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On the positive side he did say “Mustafi? We hope it will be done.” on SFR Sport (France).


I guess no one cares what he has to say anymore.


I used to be able to listen to him speak for hours. He was a genius, a great man. Now, I’m just embarrassed for him. I wanted him to eventually leave the club on his own terms and with dignity, but I fear it’s too late for that now. This is going to get worse before it gets better. He’s becoming a parody of a parody, and it is tragicomic.


Well said. What a shame.


He stood toe-to-toe with the most successful manager/bully and had great success both on and off the pitch games.

It’s sad to hear him worrying about paying the staff their salary at the end of the month, rather than about mounting a title challenge!

Norn Iron Gooner

On the other hand, Doris the tea lady wil be delighted. Might even splash out on some mint Viscounts.


Having gotten the Viscounts to the till Wenger stepped in. On closer inspection the Viscounts didn’t offer the value for money and wasn’t the top top quality biscuit we needed. We shall not be buying mint Viscounts at this time, but be sure we have our scouts out looking at all sorts of minty based biscuits and hope to be buying some soon, maybe… next year…. or the year after


What you just said is very irresponsible. I was once let go (along with another colleague-friend) because my then employer couldn’t make payroll that month. And let me tell you, it totally sucked for the both of us. I was in my early 20s then and it was still a fucked up time. My friend was 50+, trying to put three daughters through college, and was also trying to figure out a couple of issues in his marriage–no doubt were exacerbated by him getting laid off. On the contrary, if that were a genuine statement from Wenger and we have… Read more »


Sometimes these comment sections are full of people who do not know how the business side of things work. However its a pity that business has mixed in with the football.

Green gooner

Can’t agree, I don’t really think you can draw a parallel between a massive Plc’s payroll and your own experience.

Of course dealings aren’t as straight forward as many would like to think, but the frustration is that other clubs, much less established than us, seem very capable of doing what needs to be done


Worrying about the monthly payroll in the midst of the stadium building austerity days or by one of the financially troubled clubs will be a genuine concern.

Financially according to all published accounts and interpretations, we are in rude health (a lot of that credit to Wenger) compare that to the squad health now!


I agree with dg, Green Gooner, and SB. Calling out the club on the lack of transfer activity, especially when the need for a striker and more recently a center back was so obvious, is much needed. I’m sorry if my previous comment was rant-ish but I definitely feel we all should take a couple of seconds to consider the context around what we express, even though the club’s lack of progress in the transfer market has made us angry.

Sir Chips bit of rumpty tumpty

I say old chap there seem to be real rum coves on here today and no mistake – what Ho!


Look, I understand the frustration, I too get frustrated, but we have to remember, supply is limited now. There aren’t that many top quality players on the market. Even if they are, they are ridiculously priced. According to reports, our ‘rude wealth’ is £150-£200mn in reserves. Now, that can get you one top quality player. ONE. We need two top quality players, there is no need to buy average players at inflated prices because that will satisfy the needs of the fans. When it comes to transfers, I can fully understand where Wenger is coming from. The part which I… Read more »


Do you have any idea how much money this club makes? One of the most profitable clubs in the world. Trust me, no ones wage is in danger. What about the die hard fans who are struggling financially in life and still turn up to the most expensive seats in football week in week out? £3m a home game – again just that will pay all the staff their entire years salary. He talks none sense and is an embarrassment to football and our club #wengerout


I care what he says and I don’t really care what you have to say – you are NOT Arsenal.

215 Arse


You’re always whining when people criticize the manager and/or the club. People are entitled to feel hard done by the way the club has been run over the past few years. And to be honest, people like you are part of the status quo problem. Wenger has lost his touch. Get over it already.



Until someone offers a credible alternative to Arsene then I will continue to support club and manager. As witnessed at the Emirates last season most of the fans that attend games support him rather vilify his every decision.

Im sure it was not in his plans to lose two senior centre backs pre-season.


Jozzer, It was his plan all along. I think he gets kicks out to seeing the fan base loose their shit. Its a f***ing game. Some of our fans sound like trust fund kids. They see their other trust fund friend get a new toy, they run to daddy to ask for more money to buy the new toy, when the daddy refuses, they throw a hissy fit. I shouldn’t worry about what other clubs are doing, but even the chelsea bloke is not willing to pay over the odds. We should be more worried about how we play rather… Read more »

215 Arse

Jozzer, Two things were very apparent last year. 1. We needed a new center back. Gabriel is not Arsenal quality. The way I see it, we lost one starter in Mertesacker, not two. 2. We desperately needed a new striker, especially knowing Wellbeck would be out. So don’t bring the Arsene Wenger rhetoric to me. It’s infuriating because you can’t possibly ignore the results. Four conceded at home and then a toothless performance away. Two matches and our problems, again, so blinidingly obvious to see. Alternatives? You serious? – Klopp, Pep, Conte, Koeman. Get a grip mate. They were all… Read more »


Oh so you wanted for the Arsenal Board to fire Wenger Mid season for Klopp?

Pep and man city – Again mid season.

Koeman – pay a fee to Southampton?? haha We can’t even pay the asking price for players and you want us to pay for a manager? hahah

Conte- yea, that one is plausible but Wenger (for the coach and man he is) deserved another season and rightfully got one (or rather continued as per his contract)


Hindsight is a wonderful thing.

215 Arse

Hindsight my foot. The same problems have existed for years. Klopp was available for a year before signing and the Pep deal was done mid-season, but he did not take over until the next season. Man City went and got their man. It’s called ambition. Look it up and maybe you’ll be able to overcome your Wenger loyalty.


We are all Arsenal. A club is nothing without its fans. My family have supported the Arsenal for four generations, with the crowning moment being my great grandfather ducking out of his wedding reception for a few hours to watch them play (the women didn’t notice, apparently). Wenger’s autocracy has become damaging to the club, and we have every right to voice our dissatisfaction, be we newcomers to the Arsenal or old warhorses who’ve been watching for decades. And don’t you dare tell us we are not the Arsenal.


Same old same old


My least favorite part of the press conference was when he was asked about the fans calling for him to spend money and he gave a little smile and said the fans are heavily influenced by the media, as if we are all brainless and our concerns about the clubs transfer policy mean nothing because they are just a product of media manipulation.


I’m reserving judgment unitl after the transfer window closes.


Wenger has a very strong point, Frank, people who read media outlets (myself included) are influenced by them, that is not to say they are brainless. Think about it logically, if the press continuously, on a daily basis, post articles and links about/to opinion pieces stating that Arsenal ‘STILL’ haven’t signed the players ‘Wenger’ (players they have chosen themselves), then a sense of panic will enter a readers mind, if and when he/she reads the article. The fact that opinion pieces, news and media outlets are now widely available on almost every digital device means that people also believe they… Read more »

Disillusioned Gooner

Anup I beg to differ with you! The media has no influence over my and a lot of other fan’s opinions, groundhog day for the past 12 years running speaks volumes. Arsene Wenger has taken this club as far as he can and a new manager is needed.


I get that he has a point and the media are influential, it was just the way he said it, as if to dismiss the fans unrest over signings as something wholly caused by the media. Watch the press conference and decide for yourself but thats the vibe I got and I found it quite patronising.


I do agree to an extent with you guys, however, I do not think as fans we empathise with him enough.
From his point of view, how frustrated must it be when journalists ask silly loaded-questions designed to be taken out of context and Used in ‘click-bait’ articles?

I think his frustration was more at the journalists than the fans, bcause the journalist in question asked him about ‘the fans’.

I do agree though, it was very patronising.

Stringer Bell

He might still pull a couple of rabbits out the hat. ?


hopefully your right and its not rabbits from ann summers


“On whether he’s close to signing anybody…




I saw quotes where he said that he would spend £300m on the right player. Ronaldo/Messi/Sanchez up top next season.


On reading the first few comments it’s almost as if people missed the most important word Wenger said. That ‘Yes’ is really good news. Hopefully it’ll be two! Centre Back, Yes. Striker, Yes.

Dan Hunter

On whether he’s close to signing anybody…




Well there’s a new excuse… We have 600 staff to pay.

This club is insulting it’s fans on a weekly basis now.

We accept mediocrity that’s the differentiator between us and the others.


He’s talked about Pogba and £100m, today £300m, huge fees etc a lot this summer. He’s acting like he’s battling against the club’s ridiculously unrealistic fans, railing against their desires for him to bankrupt the ‘company’ by breaking the world transfer record multiple times in one window. Does he actually think this is what people are asking him to do?


Wenger worried about the 600 employees…..
1. That’s the job of the CEO and/or Financial Executive not team manager.
2. Arsenal have employees paid less then the London Living Wage
3. Theo Walcott earns £140,000 PER WEEK.
4. Wenger himself earns £8million PER YEAR.
Act like a manager Mr Wenger, do your job and improve the team.

I don't comment here often

Are we struggling to pay the chefs?


Come on, ask better questions. Is it true you’re loaning Joel Campbell and why?

How do you feel Alexis is doing up front?

Cyprus The Immortal Gooner

It’s like he says things on purpose to annoy people. Nobody is asking him to run the club bankrupt FFS…Just spend what you have available and stop making different excuses everyday…


He is also asked pretty worthless questions every time.


You obviously have more in common with him than you think.

Mr Gooner

Time to get behind the staff, so they can get paid. Otherwise, we are going into administration.

Geez, Wenger is aging.


Let’s hope the deal is done and dusted in time for the Watford game.

Austin Gooner

I like Wenger, but he shouldn’t be worried about 600 employees. That’s Gazidis’ job, presumably. He should be worried about his team. The division of responsibility isn’t quite right at Arsenal. Wenger thinks like a CEO, but what the club needs is for the manager to think like a manager and fight for more resources, etc to be spent on the team.


I figure he’s protecting Kroenke. He knows there’s no advantage to moaning about cheap owners, for Arsenal and especially for Wenger. So he takes all the heat. I admire that. What manager doesn’t want as much great talent as he can get? The other side is that Wenger really does have faith in his players. He’s no Mourinho, who will push his boss to buy the best and cut loose people who he thinks won’t help him win this season (de Bruyne?) to make room. If Wenger worked for Roman Abramovich, he’d spend a lot more. It’s not really his… Read more »

Austin Gooner

I’m not sure. I think he prioritises the long term viability of the club over short term success, and he won’t sacrifice that principle even to make his final year a success. In general I agree with him. My point is that at this point he might make a better CEO than manager. You wouldn’t want, for example, a scout deciding not to pass on information about certain players because he’s worried the club might not be able to afford the players in the long term. Each role has its responsibilities, and Wenger is taking on responsibilities that probably should… Read more »


Wonder why he bothers saying things like the ‘600 employees’ thing. That’s certainly a new one and appears to have been prepared. Does he expect global understanding of the lack of activity with this as a reason? No. So why say it. He really has this ‘me against the morons of the world who don’t know as much as I do about my job’ vibe going on nowadays.


I’d imagine most/many of those 600 staff are the stewards and people who run the restaurants and fast food bits at the stadium, there must be quite a few of them. I’m sure I read that they are largely paid minimum wage or near-enough, so I don’t think Wenger can be too worried really.


“He really has this ‘me against the morons of the world who don’t know as much as I do about my job’ vibe going on nowadays.”

Well to be fair, the comments sections of the internet prove him right every day. This is one of the better ones, but still, all around this comment there are highly upvoted comments that are the epitome of melodrama.


Why is arsene so hell bent on making this point about right or wrong way to spend…
Just do your job, stop trying to convince the world of whatever.


because everybody gets on his back about how he spends. Personally id rather he didn’t spend any money until he finds someone worthy of the fee. too many shit players costing millions. look at what the majority of the top teams achieved last season by spending millions on average players…. bollocks all. As much as its shit that we lost against Liverpool I dont see that a new player or two would have had a dramatic impact as the fullbacks were at fault for 3 goals and they arent being replaced. I’m sure we will sign somebody soon enough and… Read more »


Exactly. And he argued a couple weeks ago that he doubt Ibrahimovic would be able to cut it in the PL. Well he’s looking good so far and I’m sure as hell we would benefit from his services. Pay him the wages, we would’ve gotten him on a free. Fucks sake Arsene it’s excuse after excuse.


All he said was “I don’t know” and then went on to praise Ibrahimovic, even saying that the last season at PSG for him was the complete season for Ibrahimovic as a player.

Alex E

The tipping point (re our manager) is now long in the past. All we can do now is begin damage limitation exercise for this season and look forward to a bright future and the dreaded c-word CHANGE

Injury Crisis FC

I’m sceptical of Wenger, I do think he worries too much about money, his job is to fight for more money to better the team. But I’m worried that if we lose Wenger we’ll become another Liverpool. All f*cking over the place.

I think the real problem is the club/company philosophy, investment in the future is always the most important thing. It’s all really just about money. That’s not going to change if Wenger leaves.

Michael Wayne

How much (or little) money do we actually have? Nobody believes that we should bankrupt the club to get new players. This momey-issue is absolutely absurd.


“We are not completely ready.” Why not?

And don’t even get me started on the whole 600 employees thing. Is AW the owner, CEO, CFO, accountant, payroll manager, etc. etc. etc.? The organization as a whole exists to provide you with what you need to field the best team, not vice versa. [shakes head, grabs coat]

Hank Scorpio

But Arsene, 3 teams serious about competing for the title had the handicap of bringing in new managers. They seem ready….


…and they also seemed to be able to find the right quality players for the right positions too. And well before the window closes.


… and all of them, without a need for a striker, still manages to bring one in who definitely is more than capable to improve our team. No quality in the market? Pfffft.


The things I don’t understand about this ‘professional’football club is that we seem to throw away points at the beginning of the season as if it doesn’t matter until the transfer window shuts. So right now we are effectively starting our season on -5 points with 2 less games to play to make it up. Now, is a Mustafi or Laccazzette bought going to make us 5 extra points over 36 games? You’d definitely hope so. However, the real question as far as I see it is this; is the 5/10m we MIGHT ‘save’on these deals through brinkmanship worth -5… Read more »

The Jinsta

…and they should stop asking him the same questions all the time. As the guy above said, what is going on with Joel? what does he think of Walcy performance and was him tracking back the big difference? No height in attack = no cross strategy?

broken red army

Im convinced he does believe we dont need a striker as his aim isnt nowhere near winning league. maybe you need pressure upon to go all in after something like that and the board doesnt do that. well like all other post-Highbury seasons his aim and his objective is a CL spot. anything better than 4th is an extra/over-achievement pf some kind. and to be honest we dont need an upgrade or even cover for Giroud to achieve that. maybe only a defender. so sad and so true


I thought we looked a bit sharper today! It’s a good squad of players the bench was impressive,
Support was spot again today!
Some of you on here should try it!!
It’s getting boring now all this whinging!


Two games down and five points dropped already. We should beat Liverpool at home and Leicester away.


Perspective. He said he’s close to signing someone. He has said before they’re actively looking. I’m as pissed off as the next Gooner but tbh no one knows what’s going on, and as always he keeps his cards close to his chest. We’ve played the champions of last year and a team expected to go for title this year. 1 point from 6 isnt good, it’s not been a pretty start but we were alot better than last week. A couple of signings and Ozil and Giroud back into the fold, and things will look a lot better. I’m trying… Read more »


Was going to be sarcastic but can’t be arsed. I didn’t realise every other team in the league had no one to pay. We ain’t paupers and no one is asking for Messi but for crying out loud it is time for a bit of ambition.

Wizard of Ozil

As one of the richest clubs in the world we should be paying all our staff the London living wage and the fact we aren’t is a disgrace. Whilst responsibility for this lies solely on the shoulders of our beloved Stan Kroenke, I find it a little insulting to use the wages of Arsenal’s hard working staff as an excuse to justify not spending in the transfer window. On its own, aiming to be a financially responsible club and being astute in the transfer window is understandable but couple that with the fact the fans are being shafted with astronomical… Read more »

Dale Cooper

Completely agree, well said.


My phone won’t let me like your comment but please consider this comment as 10 extra likes. The living wage campaign has been going on for years now with arsenal and it’s just fucking disgraceful

Not again please?

Something something, angry, sad, I don’t know if I care that much anymore. You know that ‘insanity is doing the same thing blah blah’ quote that people keep chucking Arsenal’s way? Yeah that. I just don’t think I can continue to be this exasperated every year…


Excellent comment. The club should be ashamed to make statements like this. A disgrace.


He also said this: “Nobody is speaking about the performance of Rob Holding,” Wenger said. “You should be happy he is English. I am sorry he didn’t cost £55 million. I believe he had an outstanding performance for a boy who has never played in the Premier League before … it is good that he gets a chance and shows he is a quality player.”

Well, he isn’t wrong.


He only said that after he was asked if there was no member of his squad who he thought he could improve on in the transfer market as he hasnt bought anyone. Watch this 4mins in see how he gets angry spreads his arms realises he has no answer so changes the subject to Holding. Guy is a deluded past it moron. Got to pay 600 employees. Please.

Belfast Gooner

His comments on Holding are fair enough. For example, Vieira didn’t cost that much.
But our squad is short. It has been short of a top class Striker for 4 years. I don’t care how much a quality Striker would cost as long as he comes into the team, improves it, and scores goals.
We are in dire need of a Striker. If we have not bought said Striker before the end of the window, then its negligence by the club.


Vieira cost about £3.5m in a world where Shearer was the most expensive player at £15m. Vieira cost just over 20% of that. With Pogba being the most expensive player today at £100m, the Vieira transfer equates to about £22m in today’s market. Holding was what… £2.5m?! That’s about £375k back in 1997 lol! Absolute bargain!

Smashed them for 8

That boy will be really good. If he keeps this level up, I don’t see him losing his starting place to BFG when he comes back


Arsene has become arrogant, blind, stuck, without ideas; 4231 every time, “we need to buy players better than what we have” we have a winger up front.. Anything is better than nothing; his players don’t seem to care how shit we are; his system is great if your primary objective is to get a full back in possession on the edge of an opponents area; it isn’t fine if you want to score any goals. I understand and respect his ideology but it is arrogant to believe that it is perfect and to be unwilling to change or alter it.… Read more »

Glen Helders left foot

If your so worried about the 600 employees then don’t take the 8 million pound your paid every fucking year, I hate what this once great man has become


It’s also important that the employees earn the London Living Wage, which luckily they d……….oh hang on.


so sad that it has come to this. he’s like comical ali in gulf war 2. i don’t think him leaving at the end of the season is going to change anything. kroenke is the cancer.


so Arsenal can’t afford to pay their staff and compete in the transfer market? What the hell is that? Isn’t the whole point of being the 8th biggest club (in terms of revenue) supposed to give you a financial boost?? What kind of wages are these 600 people on?!


FFS stop whinging on about spending money. We don’t need another centre half and only an exceptional forward is worth getting. More than enough quality to go close this season.


If 600 staff is the reason for not signing new players, get rid of some. Players are more important! Wenger talks too much of the smelly stuff and we’re past being fed up of it. If he can’t get his head around buying players and having to spend some money, it’s time he moved on. He should have left last summer after failing to sign enough players and costing us the title. He’s not accountable to anyone that puts trophies before profit.


So sorry to say this but this once great man and my personal hero now sounds deluded. I say this with a heavy heart.


Wenger post-game pressers are increasingly surreal. 300 million? Somehow I doubt that. Arsenal should take a look at Luan. Then of course, we already have Gnabry and he doesn’t get a look in … so perhaps there’s no point?


How much was paid for John Stones? And Holding? Deluded? Lost his plot? You have the right to have an opinion but it is really ya’ll that’s deluded

Norn Iron Gooner

Go back to your ranch Stan.


Wenger is talking more like an Accountant than a Coach…the 600 staff are not his problem the 23 first team players are…I’ve never been a Wenger out man but he’s fucking pushing it…


What the fuck is he talking about. 600 employees? Seriously, I’m fucking fed up with this cunt and his bullshit. And, no, I don’t apologise for saying it.




Based on the two opening games I have a nagging feeling that Arsenal will miss out on top four. Before I was very confident we would at least be top three but now when I’ve looked at United (oh, my God what a team – it’s actually more thrilling to watch them and I used to loath watching them but hey I’m swedish and I really like Zlatan – why the fuck didn’t you go for him Wenger? And if you could spend 300 mill why didn’t you splash it on pogba?) and we shouldn’t start with city. Chelsea look… Read more »


Hate writing in the phone

Avril johnson

I think Arsene Wenger is honest and speaks the truth rather than speaking the lies that the fans want to hear. The staff wages are important. If the team are off form, people have to blame someone and unfortunately it’s the manager. Is no one else responsible. I respect Wenger and trust him to do his best for the club with the resources available.


“We are not completely ready yet”. Why not?! The responsibility for that lies entirely at Wenger’s feet. Inexcusable that we aren’t ready for the new season (especially when everyone can see where we need strengthening) and it’s already cost us points. So frustrating and stressful!


Hull’s manager seems good, maybe he could take over.


We have 600 staff to pay, especially when you factor in my 8 million a year wages it’s very difficult to afford players.

Personally I agreed with his point on holding, just because he didn’t cost a fortune doesn’t mean he is not good. However if he is going to rub his ego about unearthing a potential English gem he also has to have the balls to say how toothless we are up front. Double standard Wenger!


Supporting Arsenal Is becoming a joke. In 10 years time we will look back at these years and laugh

Disillusioned Gooner

We have to pay 600 employees?

Arsene’s only concern should be on the pitch. Now taking the pitch into perspective his responsibility may be from the first team down the ranks and there isn’t 600 of them. Arsene is unravelling right before our eyes and it’s ducking scary.


Paying the staff? Really?


I’ve never heard a manager say this in my whole life, and honestly no ambitious manager should. Football isn’t just a business .


Why doesn’t anyone question Gazidis. When David Dein was at Arsenal, Wenger never had problems signing players. Probably it is Gazidis who can not execute on Wenger’s transfer plan. And knowing Wenger, he will never come out and critize Gazidis or management publicaly.


No point railing against the world. The problems are of his own making. Inaction in previous windows. Would Lacazette have been valued at £60m 3 years ago? Would Mustafi have cost £25m?

This is the outcome of sitting on your hands, stubbornness + blind faith in a squad that has had glaring gaps for ages now.

Ducks sake

Questions for Arsene…

Did Joel Campbell touch your bum?

When you say there’s 600 staff to pay, are you really worried about your own £8million?

Why is the team still not ready when all the other teams can be ready?

Isn’t part of your £8million salary paid in return for you having the team ready?

Why do Arsenal players need extended breaks after playing in tournaments when all other teams have them playing 90mins the first game back?

Why do Arsenal get so many injuries?

Are you a nincompoop?

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