THE BIG MATCH

Wenger presses 'boring' charges

He accuses media of lacking creativity in still playing up Ospina's mistake

LONDON • Arsene Wenger yesterday launched a furious attack on "boring" journalists and "depressing" pundits who have continued to focus on David Ospina's calamitous own goal against Olympiakos in the Champions League.

The Arsenal manager continues to face criticism over his decision to start Tuesday's game with the Colombian in goal instead of Petr Cech despite describing the suggestion that Ospina was responsible for a 3-2 home defeat as "a farce".

And as attention turned to tomorrow's Premier League clash against Manchester United, Wenger reacted furiously when the same topic resurfaced.

"Do not come always back with that same story," he said yesterday.

"I think you lack a bit creativity in the press, you all follow a bandwagon that is very, very, very, very boring. I don't go along with that.

"If you have any interesting question about Sunday's game, I will answer but you cannot keep coming back to the same story.

"Come to the game on Sunday and you will see who's in the goal.

"I think you have not watched well the game on Tuesday night. To come always with the same story.

"I have two world-class goalkeepers. It's the easiest choice I have to make, to pick one of those two.

"A goalkeeper can make a mistake and you have to accept that.

"If you watched really the game and you come to the conclusion we lost because of Ospina, I question your knowledge in football."

It was one of several contentious moments during an awkward press conference.

Wenger threatened to storm out when it was suggested that his unwillingness to accept that his team selection contributed to the Olympiakos defeat backed up Jose Mourinho's recent allegation that the Frenchman is the "only manager not under pressure".

"Stop that story or we stop the press conference," he said. He was then asked what he thought of pundits who call his team "soft" and "weak", both words used by former United midfielder Roy Keane in his analysis of the Olympiakos game.

"Why always questions of being weak? (It's) because they lack a bit creativity and they don't analyse well," he said.

"One pundit says something on television and all behind that repeat the same thing.

"It's quite boring because nobody came with numbers (to show) why the game was won or lost.

"It's quite depressing to see that."

Laurent Koscielny, Mikel Arteta and Mathieu Flamini will all miss the United game with injury.

But Wenger insisted Arsenal will go into the fixture in a buoyant mood as a result of last weekend's 5-2 victory over Leicester, with the results of European games irrelevant in the English Premier League.

"Usually Manchester United are always fighting at the top," he said.

"It has an even bigger meaning now because there are three points between the teams, we play at home in a big game, we've just come from a win at Leicester and we want to continue our run."

THE GUARDIAN


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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 03, 2015, with the headline 'WENGER PRESSES 'BORING' CHARGES'. Print Edition | Subscribe