Arsene Wenger puts a lot of stock in the FA Cup, and plans on doing everything he can to win it for a third consecutive year, according to The Independent.
The Arsenal boss has come in for a huge amount of criticism recently, some of it fair, some of it incredibly harsh. Winning some silverware this season would help alleviate some of the pressure on his shoulders, and despite the topsy turvy nature of the Premier League this season, the FA Cup looks like our best bet.
Wenger claims he’s focusing heavily on the cup this season, and clearly wants to clinch an FA Cup treble. He obviously won’t ignore the Premier League, but he seems to feel that the FA Cup is just as important.
“Personally, I rate highly the FA Cup. I think it’s a fantastic, prestigious competition,” he said.
“When I listen to people, should we lose a game in the FA Cup it will be a disaster. You cannot say, on one side, it’s undervalued and, on the other side, if we lose it’s a disaster. We won the FA Cup twice in the last two years. We will try to do our best again in this competition.
“I believe that if we were able to do it again, it would be absolutely fantastic. There’s no country where the national cup is bigger. In Spain and France it’s a fantastic, prestigious competition as well. Nobody neglects it: not Barcelona, not [Real] Madrid. Everybody plays for it 100 per cent, with a top team always.”
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He’s right about one thing, and that’s the fickleness of fans and pundits. Far too often we hear criticism of the FA Cup, and if you talk about it as some sort of achievement then you are blasted. However, if we were to get knocked out then Wenger wouldn’t hear the end of it, and there would be a mountain of calls for him to be sacked. It’s a case of damned if you do and damned if you don’t, and that’s a horrible situation to be in.
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The Premier League is unquestionably our priority, but if we can’t win the league then a third consecutive FA Cup would be a superb consolation prize.