The Gunners produced yet another lacklustre display but fought back from a goal down to win a nervous penalty shoot-out against the holders.
The former United legend has insisted that the Gunners need a reality check after barely scraping by a spirited Championship side. He said:
These Arsenal players need a reality check.
Last season they celebrated finishing fourth and now they celebrate beating a Championship side on penalties – we are talking about Arsenal FC here.
We have been critical that they have not been able to win ugly games and they have done that today.
But to say they showed character? I have seen them enough times this year to say they have not done enough of that.
They’ve beaten a Championship side in the semi-final on penalties.
I think they need to relax a little bit and celebrate if they win the final.
However Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has hit back and defended his players, by admitting that they had a right to be joyous after their win. He said:
Yes when you are 1-0 down.
Let’s not forget that Wigan won the cup last year, they went to the semi-final this year, they knocked three Premier League teams out, and we were 1-0 down with 10 minutes to go.
So of course everybody was happy because we know how difficult it is to turn these games around.
It’s really foolish for someone of Keane’s stature to criticise players for celebrating a win. They have just reached the final of the most prestigious domestic cup competition in European football and are 90 minutes away from ending a nine year trophy drought, so there was definitely a reason to celebrate.
The players were exhausted after an exhilarating 120 minutes and the overwhelming pressure of penalties. The players knew the significance of the result not only for their season, but also for the future of the club’s most successful manager, whose future hung firmly in balance when Jordi Gomez put Wigan ahead in the second half.
The penalties are anguishing at the best of times, let alone during an FA Cup semi final. The sheer relief alone is enough to understand their reaction to winning and are they then meant to curtail their overwhelming joy because it was only a Championship team?
We are one game away from ending an embarrassingly long spell without silverware for one of Europe’s biggest clubs and resurrecting the glory of the club.
You are drunk, go home Keane. Share your thoughts in the comments below.