Arsene Wenger has to expect criticism of defence, says Arsenal legend

Alan Smith defends Paul Merson after Arsene Wenger's labelled the former midfielder "a joke"

The Sport Review staff
By The Sport Review staff

Alan Smith has supported Paul Merson’s criticism of the Arsenal defence ahead of their clash against Swansea.

Enhanced odds: 12/1 on Arsenal and Spurs to win on Sunday

Gunners manager Arsene Wenger branded Merson “a joke” after the former midfielder hit out at the north London side’s performance during their 3-3 draw with Anderlecht on Tuesday.

It is the ability to see out a match and game management that Arsenal still can’t seem to grasp

Alan Smith

However, ex-Arsenal striker Smith feels Wenger’s side consistently fail to see out games despite the manager improving his attacking options over the summer.

“Wenger is clearly a little bit upset about the criticism,” Smith told Sky Sports.

“But he criticised the defending in his post-match interview, saying they were really poor from first to last.

“So you have to expect us, employed on the other side of the fence watching it, to be quite critical.

“It was really poor. It isn’t the first time it has happened.

“For Arsenal fans it is so frustrating because they have made improvements going forward.

“Danny Welbeck has offered them something different, obviously Sanchez has been a revelation.

“It is the ability to see out a match and game management that Arsenal still can’t seem to grasp.

“When you look at the experience of the team, it shouldn’t be the case.”

Arsenal can move into the top four with victory over Swansea at the Liberty Stadium.


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