Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Give Wenger Some Respect, Dein Urges Arsenal Fans

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Give Wenger Some Respect, Dein Urges Arsenal Fans

Article excerpt

Byline: James Olley Chief Football Correspondent

[bar] AVID DEIN has urged Arsenal supporters to back manager Arsene Wenger through the toughest period of his career or risk the Frenchman walking away from the club.

Wenger is contracted at Emirates Stadium until 2014 and last week reiterated his commitment to the Gunners but is under more pressure than ever to strengthen his team in a bid to end a run of six consecutive seasons without silverware.

The departure of Cesc Fabregas to Barcelona combined with Samir Nasri's imminent move to Manchester City has left a growing number of supporters disillusioned as Wenger stalls on signing possible replacements. Injuries to several first-team players including Kieran Gibbs and Jack Wilshere and suspensions to Alex Song and Gervinho have left Arsenal short of options for tomorrow's Premier League clash against Liverpool but Dein told the BBC he believes the club's fans must unite behind Wenger through the turmoil.

"Leaving the club is always an option open to him because it could come to a stage when he will say, 'Well, I have had enough,'" said Dein, who as vice-chairman brought Wenger to the club in 1996 before leaving in 2007.

"At least that's how I feel and I feel the fans should feel that. They should at least give him the respect that he deserves for what he's done. People talk about, 'Has his time finished at the club?' "That's a very dangerous thing to say because it's easy to get rid of people and then what? People talk about buying players. Well, you've got to get players who are better than the ones you've got at the moment.

"I can understand the fans' worry because the expectation level today is so high and Arsene has brought such success to the club.

"In 15 years that he's been there, every year we've been in the Champions League. So you can understand, perhaps, fans feeling a little frustrated that they haven't seen a trophy for a few years. Under Arsene's stewardship, they've had good times and very good times and there's no reason to expect why we shouldn't see them again. …

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