Former Arsenal midfielder Paul Merson believes that Arsene Wenger is in danger of seeing the majority of the fanbase turn against him if we lose to Chelsea on Saturday afternoon, the Daily Star reports.
Merson couldn’t fathom Wenger’s decision to rest half of our first XI against Dinamo Zagreb in midweek which resulted in a humiliating defeat to a team that was yet to win a Champions League group game in their history.
Merson and Wenger have a history, with the boss taking exception to his criticism last season – stating that he wouldn’t take advice from somebody who’s managed “zero” games (via The Telegraph).
In what seems like a response to that specific comment, Merson claimed that some of Wenger’s decision represent that of a coach yet to manage a serious game.
Arsenal news & rumours
“But now it’s Wenger – and he only has himself to blame,” Merson wrote in his column about the pressure Wenger’s currently under.
- [Player ratings] Arsenal 1-2 Wolves – Auba flops and pressure on Arteta
- [Team news] Arsenal line up vs Wolves – Arteta’s dilemma with three out
- [Player ratings] Molde 0-3 Arsenal – Balogun scores as Gunners cruise
“Sometimes he does things that make you think he’s never managed before. I mean, what was he doing resting so many players against Dinamo Zagreb in midweek?
“It beats me. He was obviously scared of what might happen against Chelsea. But I found it extraordinary.”
Wenger is yet to beat Jose Mourinho in the Premier League and with the Blues struggling this season, this could be our best chance yet to inflict more pain on the Portuguese coach.
A win for us would also effectively rule them out of the title race at this moment in time, given that they trail Manchester City by 11 points.
However, a defeat would certainly place heat on Wenger after he sacrificed our opening Champions League fixture for the trip to Stamford Bridge.