Sunday, March 3, 2024

Wenger: Draw will help rebuild confidence

Arsene Wenger says Arsenal’s 2-2 draw with Manchester City will help to rebuild confidence at the Emirates although two more dropped points leave their Champions League hopes hanging by a thread.

The Gunners currently sit sixth in the Premier League standings, seven points adrift of today’s opponents who are fourth. They are two games in hand on Liverpool in third place, however, with Manchester United, Tottenham Hotspur, reigning champions Leicester and a perennially difficult away day at Stoke still to come the run in looks tough on paper.

“Overall, we started with quite a high level of anxiety,” reflected Wenger in his post-match press conference.

“We were punished straight away, so it was a mental test. You could see that the team were touched on the confidence front and that the fluency in our game suffered.

“We have shown great mental resources because we went a goal down twice and one time it was at the worst moment in a game, just before half-time.

“On top of that, we lost Koscielny at half-time. In the second half we came back to 2-2, so it will help us to rebuild confidence because we have certainly shown some mental strength.

“That will help us to come back to our natural fluency. Mathematically, for both teams it’s not the best operation, not for City, not for us. We can think about mathematics when the confidence is there again, but hopefully that will help us restart now.”

He added: “I don’t know [if we’ll finish in the top four]. If you look at yesterday’s results, it’s very difficult to predict what will happen in the last 10 games.

“What we want is to come back to win our games. How many do we need to win to finish in the top four? I don’t know.”

Arsenal are back in action on Wednesday against West Ham. Andy Carroll will score from a set piece, Granit Xhaka will be booked and Shkodran Mustafi will argue with the referee as if the guy had just taken a shit on his kitchen floor

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Crazy given how well we were doing earlier in the season.


We weren’t actually playing that well earlier in the season (apart from Chelsea match), but we getting late goals which deceived us into thinking we were better than we actually were.

I long for the return of the days where we dominate teams nearly every game.


It’s not often you get lucky, 20 games in a row….


19 actually, 5 of which were against tripe like Basel, Ludogorets x 2, and two Championship sides: Nottm Forest and Reading.

Of the other 14, we only won against Watford, Southampton, Hull, Burnley, Swansea, Sunderland and Bournemouth – a bunch of gash. lower-half PL teams.

There was one good result against Chelsea tho.

That’s the thing about statistics. Examining them is more important than just looking at them.


Considering that every club has dropped points to a bunch of gash this year 19 is still a good run. You know, examining things with perspective and all.

cazorla\'s smile

@scotch.. How easy it is to say that? Well, I guess we were mentally stronger, technically brilliant and just overall the bees knees. But somehow we lost all that brilliance in a few months.. oh yeah you make a lot of sense.. its not that we are unlucky.. we were brilliant at the start of the season


Victory will surely help our confidence…a lot more


“us”??? I’m surprised you were deceived.


You’re right, I had written earlier in the season how our defence is unconvincing and we were lucky to get away with narrow wins and how we needed to address it quickly(I remember blogs writing about it too). Also I’ve always been a believer in Per’s positioning ability and how he marshalls the defence around him. I’m not surprised that Nacho and Hector haven’t hit their highs without him. We need to groom mustafi but AW sidelined Per too quick apart from his injury. We should get him into our team now (unfortunately it’s a bit too late, I would’ve… Read more »

Igbo Amadi-Obi

Certainly not the same slow Per. He is now older and slower from a bad knee injury and almost a season out. Not quite sure if it was Mustafi that assisted the Walcott goal; if it was, we would have lost 2-0 without his adventurism.


Bring in the hammer irons


On^* 🙂

Tired Gooner

Until West Ham beat us on Wednesday due to our complacency.

California Gooner

Leave already


Sorry mate, he’s staying to further erode his legacy. I would have loved for him to preserve his Top 4 and St Totteringham record but alas he didn’t know when to bow out.
After the West Brom match he said he had made his decision. Why he thinks it’s ok to keep this decision a secret from the fans is a real mystery.


exactly. it baffles me how so many people in professional sports, from owners, to coaches, to players, figuratively shit on the fans as if we don’t matter.

where the fuck do these fools think their actual paycheck comes from? without the fans spending money to watch them play, they’d be nothing more than some guys kicking a ball around a field. a rec league down at the local park. they seem to forget that quite often.

Far East Stand

I’d like to hear Wenger talk about what the team’s weak points (in actual terms of football rather than pseudo-psychological babble) from the game were and what kind of specific training he’s going to do to overcome those problems. Something that is actually more tangible, that fans can say “ok, at least he’s trying to address the issues”. His post-match analyses of games are like listening to a politician. Hearing about “mental tests”, “natural fluency”, “high level of anxiety” to me is meaningless and somewhat aggravating. “What we want to do is come back and win our games” Sure, we… Read more »


exactly . he’s avoiding the real answer by giving these sort of philosophical bullshit. never have i ever heard wenger take responsibility for the defeats . after all he is the manager , he is directly or indirectly responsible for the arsenals poor form . even if he is addressing issues but just not saying out in public , i dont see anything to suggest that wenger is even trying to change something in the team . same team weak in weak out , same outdated tactics , same formation(for years). the weakness that we identify with arsenal for years… Read more »


Far East Stand – your comment has nailed it!

Lula da Gilberto

On the face of it a game against West Ham is exactly the kind of game we need to recrudesce our winning form. Given what we are like, with a winnable, straight-forward looking this, itll surely be horrendous to watch! Nine goals, defenders being stretchered off, Steve Bounds face reaching new lows in expressions of frustration and dissatisfaction, and Xhaka being yellow carded for coughing in front of the referee, Andy Carroll in Crouch vs. Arsenal-esque form, a goal from Theo and then 89minutes of misplaced passes and poor control, a full on 3 used sprint by Ozil to barely… Read more »


Sorry, but a win was required to rebuild confidence. 1 point leaves us in sixth place, which isn’t enough for a team of arsenal’s caliber (pun intended). One win in six simply isn’t good enough. Anything less than three points in all of our remaining fixtures will be seen as a failure. The players owe the fans this at least- I just haven’t seen any fight or desire from the squad this season. As I’ve said previously, the team need a good rollicking in the dressing room. I’m available for living expenses if arsenal can sort out the required work… Read more »

Southland Gunner

Not Hector’s confidence. How did he let Sane burn him like that?


Hector played great imo


Blogs suspected a while back that he might be carrying an injury, and he certainly does not look his old (?) Flash-like self out there lately. Hopefully he can find that extra gear again soon.


Really?The defence went missing when MC scored their goals.Boro have abetter defensive record than Arsenal but attack wise are bottom of the table. Wenger must strike abalance between attack and defence.
The draw is just a stay of execution for the fm. Until he can start improving the defence and making Arsenal hard to beat as well as winning,the vultures will be circling around.

That time Abou Diaby kicked John Terry in the head

Arsenal, just knock up one photoshoot with Mustafi laughing maniacally whilst weilding a flamethrower or smiling heartily whilst wearing a sportsjacket backwards and aĺl the negativity goes away.

From me at least.


How low our standards have to be to take confidence from a performance like this at home? We barely got a draw, our defence were nowhere to be found and we only had their wastefulness and the posts to thank. While their goalie conceded every shot of ours. Hard to take confidence from anything around this team.


I think taken in isolation a draw with city is not a *terrible* result. It’s just come during a particularly heinous run of form. What I will say though is the manner we concede stupid goals is so depressing. Not forgetting that De Bruyne (?) hit the post and nacho could on another day have literally handed them 3 points I think we take this point and move on.


You forgot that Özil will be bad.


Is it #WengerIn this week guys? I’ve lost track.


Just look at the last result, that mainly tells you.

Win = In
Draw = Both
Lose = Out

in terms of the majority of comments made at least.


Not sure what people want to expect Wenger to say.

He is trying to push his team to get past the line.

We need to take the positives and correct the negatives.

It could have been all 3 points gone and more negativity, no confidence in our ability to compete with the ‘peer’ rivals anymore.

As is, we showed we can compete but we also showed vulnerability in some common defensive mistakes. But those can be tweaked and corrected.

Its more difficult if the team was psychologically gone.


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