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Arsenal Boss Defends His Players

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has questions to answer in the wake of a poor performance against Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League.

Arsenal endured a chastening experience in last night’s Champions League group stage game against Borussia Dortmund, suffering a comprehensive 2-0 defeat. In the wake of this latest disappointment Gunners boss Arsene Wenger is facing questions from the press corps on his under-performing stars, especially Mesut Ozil and new boy Danny Welbeck

Great excitement surrounded Mesut Ozil’s signing from Real Madrid in summer 2013 for a hefty £42.5 million fee, however he has failed to live up to his billing and criticism has intensified. The World Cup winner was anonymous throughout in the Dortmund game leading to German newspaper Bild giving  him the lowest possible rating. The British press were hardly anymore forgiving, The Mirror for example criticised his “apparent lack of desire”.

However despite the flak the player is taking there is a also a recognition that the German is being played out of position, with Wenger often using him on the flanks as opposed to his preferred role in the middle just behind the frontmen. Club legend Ian Wright echoed the views of many with his tweet directed at the Gunners boss

“Arsene get Ozil in the middle, get the team to play around him! He’s 42 mill worth of player for a reason. Do something with him PLEASE.”

Danny Welbeck’s honeymoon period with the English press in the wake of his move to Arsenal appears to be well and truly over, with  the new signing shipping criticism for his profligacy in front of goal. In the Dortmund game he spurned three clear cut opportunities, leading to questions being asked. Arsene Wenger defended his player in the face of press criticism, calling for patience, he was quoted in The Mail as saying.

‘Danny will improve – we don’t have to make a problem of that. He had a very lively first half. He had two or three good chances, but couldn’t finish them. There was one obvious one… We have to be patient with him.’

With pressure from both the fans and press mounting on the Arsenal stars, improved performances on the pitch will really be the only way to silence the critics.

Dan O’Mahony, Pundit Arena.

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