Arsène Wenger is feeling a massive amount of pressure right now, after his Arsenal side were all but dumped out of the Champions League thnaks to a 5-1 hammering at Bayern Munich on Wednesday.
The result leaves the Gunners staring down the barrel of a last-16 exit for the seventh year in succession, and has increased speculation that this will be Wenger’s final year at the Emirates after over two decades at the club.
The likes of Martin Keown, Ian Wright and Roy Keane have all given their opinion on Arsenal’s performance and on Wenger himself, but perhaps the most outrageous critique of the Frenchman has come from Paul Merson.
The Sky Sports pundit played under Wenger for the manager’s first year at the club, and has told Talksport that he believes his former boss’s reputation as a strong tactician is overrated. In fact, he goes as far to say that Harry Redknapp had a far more advanced tactical acumen than the 67-year-old.
Merson, who played under Redknapp at Portsmouth for a season near the end of his career, told Talksport on Thursday morning:
“I don’t think tactically he [Wenger] is as great as people say.
“I played under Harry Redknapp and people go, ‘Oh, Harry Redknapp, a wheeler and dealer’, and that is so disrespectful.
“That man was much better tactically than Arsene Wenger.
“I played under Arsene Wenger for just under a year and I played for Harry for a year – Harry was much better tactically.”
Merson has been an outspoken critic of Wenger in recent years, particularly last year when they lost out to Leicester City in the Premier League title race. He recently repeated his insistence that losing the league in this manner was a sign that Arsenal would never again win the league under the current regime, and that he should have left at the end of the last campaign.