Arsenal’s embarrassing away defeat to Newcastle may have surprised few fans after seeing the Gunners lose every away League game this year, but could Wenger have tried a little harder to actually get a result instead of playing lesser squad members like Joe Willock, Alex Iwobi, Rob Holding and Calum Chambers?
It would appear that Wenger is putting all his eggs in a Europa League-shaped basket and has no interest in going into next year’s Europa League via our League position and is going all out to reach the Champions League. The only problem is that we have to get past the favourites Atletico Madrid in the semi-final first.
The Gunners legend Thierry Henry thinks that Wenger should have been a bit more proactive, especially as we don’t have to play another match until next weekend. Henry said: “I said two weeks ago, Burnley are only two points behind Arsenal and people were like, ‘Come on, relax’. No, I can’t relax because they are really two points behind Arsenal.
“It is kind of a weird one because you want to put all our focus on the Europa League and it was great to see Joe Willock today and Reiss Nelson the other week – you want to see youngsters, – but at the minute, you can’t really play on ‘we can rotate and have it easy in the league’ while thinking about the Europa League.
“If they go out to Atletico Madrid, suddenly you’re fighting with Burnley – what an amazing job that Sean Dyche has done by the way – and you’re out of everything.
“I don’t think that will happen – maybe it’s my Arsenal side coming out – but [Wenger] rested some good players today and ended up losing the game. You need to think carefully about how you are going to play those last few games.”
Maybe Wenger really is not interested in the Europa League and he actually wants us to finish below Burnley. Or maybe he believes that we are nailed on to beat Atletico and go on and win the Europa League, but it certainly looks like he has given up on any sort of League position with his choices for Sunday’s starting XI….