What is Arsenal boss REALLY saying about FA cup?

I may be reading too much into what Arsene Wenger has said about Arsenal and the FA cup but it did strike me as a little bit odd to be honest. The Frenchman suggested that in his time in charge of the Gunners, his focus has been firmly on the FA cup, perhaps to the detriment of the Champions League.

Wenger’s record in the competition, winning it five times since taking charge of the club in 1996, backs up his words, reported by ESPN, to some extent at least. But many Arsenal fans might be left scratching their heads a bit. Wenger has previously said quite openly that the Premier League and Champions League are his priorities while we have often see the manager put out changed teams with a fair few fringe or second string players. So his assertion that the FA cup has been so important to him loses it’s value a touch.

Wenger said, “It is important to us and we have always taken it seriously.

“We did not always manage to win it, but we have won it five times during my period here. Nobody has won it more in the last 18 years, so we have always taken it seriously.

“Sometimes so seriously that we suffered in the Champions League after. Many times a cup game was in front of a Champions League game – for instance this week we play in the cup and then next week in the Champions League.

“Many times we lost some players. I remember against Manchester United when we played against Chelsea in the Champions League three days later we lost some because we took the game seriously.”

As I say I may be wrong but here is what I think the boss is really saying. If we focus too much on the FA cup, with a Champions League double-header with Monaco coming up and with the race for the top four of the Premier League looking tighter than ever, it might cost us. So Arsenal fans should not moan if I field a weaker side and suffer a shock exit at the hands of Middlesborough tomorrow.

Is Wenger getting his excuses in early?

Tags Middlesborough


  1. Would not blame him for resting a few players, CL and League take priority.

    Even with no manager and a weakened team we should win, responsibility is solely on players for this game.

    1. I don’t see the major issue with fielding players who generally don’t start, especially as it’s a championship side we’re playing. I don’t mean that in an arrogant way either, the opposite in fact – it’s likely our top stars may take this game a bit less seriously seeing as it isn’t a premier league side we’re up against, whereas players that don’t normally start will have more hunger and will take the game more seriously ss they’ll see it as their chance to impress and get played more as a result.

      1. They may be a championship side but they are top of the championship, will be a Premier League team next season and to be honest on current form are playing better than any team in and around the relegation zone.
        We shouldn’t be fielding weakened teams, this is our only realistic chance of silverware this season.
        Play a full strength squad and rest key players if we forge ahead.

    2. Szcz
      Chambers Gabriel Kos Gibbs
      Coq Rosicky
      Walcott Ozil Welbeck

      Enough players rested, still a strong starting 11

  2. If he rests players, they should be Alexis, Ospina, Koscielny, Mertsacker, Coquelin, Giroud, Cazorla, Bellerin.

    These players should be fine to be available to play or on bench:

  3. You’r resting Giroud Cazorla Coquelin
    Bellerin Mertesacker Kos Ospina ?
    14 ? Wilshere Hayden not ready.
    Still need 4 more for the bench.
    Diaby Podolski Campbell Sanogo Ryo 🙂

  4. Wengers comments are
    utterly worthless.
    He never says anything.
    Just a general vague ramble.
    Talk about de abreu having a lack of English.
    Wenger has been here 18 years and can hardly speak English.
    And he says nothing anyway. Better to put de abreu on.
    We would learn more from de breu speaking Spanish
    than Wenger butchering the English language in his vague references to nothing 🙁

    1. You are not alone AYZA.
      you are part of the 11 yr
      4th place champion empire :
      AYZAY did you say you are gong to be
      #wacking away on valentines day
      Good luck with that 🙂

    1. Kos to be rested I hope, he has been indifferent since returning from injury, maybe still a bit of pain and inflammation.

      Ospina to start for as well, only cause of CL game midweek, think he needs to keep sharpness.

  5. The fa cup to me should be taken seriously! We are the defending champs! Why should we field a weak side and get knock out early?although we have enough quality to beat middlesborough no team should be taken for granted!

  6. OT: Firstly I don’t like morinho or Chelsea at all!!!! But I do admire the level of ambition they show.

    Last season Chelsea were trophyless mainly because they lacked goal scorers. Torres and Demba Ba weren’t doing a great job and there wasn’t enough creativity,so to solve the problem they decided to sign Fabregas,Drogba and Remy. After mediocre performances by Schurrle and with Mohammed Salah not being in their plans,they decided to release both the deadwood to find someone who is considered better by most. Not to mention they brought back a new world class keeper to ensure good competition.

    Arsenal has had a big problem in defense since FOREVER , even though BFG and Kos did well for most of last season. We never had and adequate substitute incase of injury and that caught up with us later during the season. Two of the best defenders(yes I rate TV5 above Kos and BFG when fully fit) we had in our defense left beginning of the season and Chamber and Debuchy came in. I personally don’t think Debuchy is equivalent to Sagna and Chambers is definitely not better than Verminator…point is our defense dropped their standard in terms of the quality they had from the previous season. Even with Gabriel I still feel we need someone to replace Bfg.

    In Mid, we haven’t had a good enough DM since Gilberto left, Song and Flamini tried but they were never good enough. Although Coquelin has been brilliant I always feel we need atleast 2 players in each role that can compete with each other for a place.
    Then the B2B place has not been adequately replaced since Viera, yes ramsey scored a lot last season but we all know they were pieces in his game missing, he didn’t defend well enough and he wasn’t there to initiate most of our attacks from deep. This season he has been horrible . I wont even talk about golden Jack.

    Most teams that win trophies have a striker that can score 30 goals per season,we had won back when we won trophies. Giroud isn’t that guy we all know it. Man United see that Welbeck isn’t good enough yet Arsenal think he would help them win the league…Ridiculous!!!!
    Bergkamp,Rooney,Lampard in his days…all the following can score over 15 goals per season and still get a good number of assist,ozil is great at assists but a second striker should be able to score.

    Point I’m trying to make is we have moved backwards as a club and we lack a lot of ambition, which is frustrating!!!

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