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09:37 - 04 December 2004
Arsene Wenger has admitted Arsenal are in a 'results crisis' as they struggle to keep pace with leaders Chelsea. However, he insisted his players would again show strength in adversity as he warned Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho that he still had to cope with a dip in his own side's form.

Arsenal have won just one of their past eight Barclays Premiership and Champions League games and have failed to keep a clean sheet in any of their past 12 matches.

Indeed, they could even take on Birmingham today with a deficit of eight points if Chelsea have already beaten Newcastle in an early kick-off.

"Results-wise, from what we expected, it is a crisis as we didn't expect to drop as many points as we have done recently. We cannot deny that, " admitted Wenger.

"The spirit, morale and desire are high, but we have dropped our confidence level a bit.

"Four weeks ago, everyone said we were 'invincible' and now, suddenly, we are 'useless'. But sport isn't like that. If we're capable of going on a run four weeks ago, why aren't we capable of doing it now?

"We can't deny we are not winning and you can't say everything is perfect. We have problems as we're not as efficient as we were, but the players haven't lost their ability.

"It's down to how much we want to get it right again."

Wenger nevertheless insists Arsenal have seen it all before. After all, last season they were trailing Manchester United at this stage of the season.

And in the double-winning seasons of 1998-99 and 2001-02, they had to embark on incredible new-year surges to come from behind.

"I'm confident in the desire and hunger of this team. In every season we've been successful, we've gone through periods like this and we've always come back, " insisted Wenger.

"These players care, they are hungry for success and I respect them for that. They want to be the best and, in periods like this, you need to help each other even more than usual.

"In every difficult period, you find out how strong you are, but I have no doubts that my players will show that. We must play our usual football and not worry too much."

While Wenger respects the advances made by Chelsea, he could not resist a warning to Mourinho, who was yesterd ay named Premiership manager of the month, that he has yet to handle a dip in form at Stamford Bridge.

"You would prefer to be in Chelsea's situation as they are winning, but it's not dramatic. They will have a difficult period as well. They could have lost against Fulham, " he said. "But they are not our worry, that is Arsenal. Why should I be concerned about Chelsea? If we don't win our games, it's about us."

Wenger's biggest problem is that his injury list is growing, with Robin van Persie and Jermaine Pennant having now joined Dennis Bergkamp, Gilberto Silva, Edu and Pascal Cygan on the sidelines.

Patrick Vieira, meanwhile, will be suspended for next weekend's clash with Chelsea, as well as missing the midweek Champions League tie against Rosenborg along with Lauren.

Wenger added: "We're in a period where we're a bit less strong and we have to consider that what happened last season (in going unbeaten in the league) was an exception."

The injury list is becoming such a headache for Wenger that he is considering re-signing 34-year-old French midfielder Emmanuel Petit on a short-term contract.

The World Cup winner, who was part of the double-winning Arsenal team of 1998, is out of contract after being freed by Chelsea last summer and is working on rebuilding his fitness levels at the Gunners' London Colney training base.

And with Edu not only injured but also stuck in contract negotiations, the Arsenal manager intimated that if the Brazilian midfielder fails to sign a new deal by January 1 - when he can start talks with overseas clubs on a Bosman free transfer next summer - he could turn to Petit.

Wenger said: "It has crossed my mind to help Emmanuel. He is here to get back to full fitness and find a club.

Maybe he could help us for a few months. I haven't ruled it out.

"I am just interested in helping him find a club where he could play for one or two years and he'll not find that with us. But I know him, I know he is a great player and if Edu goes . . ."

- With Mourinho picking up the manager-of-the-month award, there was a double celebration at Stamford Bridge as Chelsea winger Arjen Robben was named the Barclays Premiership's player of the month.

Robben's impact has been dramatic since his return from an ankle injury, with the Dutchman - a £12million summer signing from PSV Eindhoven - scoring winning goals against Everton and Fulham
 

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Discussion Starter #2
what do you think about what wenger said ?

man i realy like the way arsenal used to play ... but what is going ?!!!

in the begning of this season they were the best team in the world who plays football !

i totaly agree with that ,,

is wenger helping the team by this ?!
 

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yeh ..i think its better for the league that all the top teams is near by ,,, it will make the matchs and the league much better ...just like the italian league
 

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bokiko said:
yeh ..i think its better for the league that all the top teams is near by ,,, it will make the matchs and the league much better ...just like the italian league
yes let's hope Chelsea us and Everton all drop some more points to give Boro and Liverpool a chance.
 

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i think he's trying to fire up the team with his comments. we'll see if it pays off. i hope it does, because the only two teams i want to see holding silverware at the end of the season are liverpool and (i could accept) arsenal.

-p
 

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I don’t feel we are in a crisis," he said. "The spirit, morale and desire are high. We have had a drop in confidence and maybe results-wise we are in a small crisis from what we have expected.


"But if we were capable of doing it four weeks ago then why should we not be capable of doing it now? Four weeks ago people were saying we were invincible now they say we are useless.


"We have to take the right distance. We cannot say we don’t have problems, we have not been as efficient as we were. But the players have not lost ability. Sport is not like that. It is just down to how much the players want it.


"I am very confident in hunger of this team. In every season we have been successful we have gone through a period like this. These players care. They want success and I respect them a lot for that."


Wenger continues to be without Dennis Bergkamp (Achilles), Pascal Cygan (back), Gilberto (Vertebrae) and Edu (broken toe). This week’s Carling Cup tie at Old Trafford also deprived him of Jermaine Pennant (hamstring) and Robin van Persie (ankle). The manager admits injuries have not helped in a difficult period


"We could not rotate in November," said Wenger, "especially as we lost Gilberto and Edu at the same stage in an important area on the pitch.


"In that time we lost eight points in the last 10 minutes and conceded 50 per cent of our goals on set pieces.


"We lost our basics. Now we have to come back and show how strong we are. We have to defend well and attack well. For a period we did not defend well enough."






WHAT CRISIS?
www.arsenal.com
 

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rusko said:
i think he's trying to fire up the team with his comments. we'll see if it pays off. i hope it does, because the only two teams i want to see holding silverware at the end of the season are liverpool and (i could accept) arsenal.

-p
Likewise :)
 

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Mourinho & Cassano!!
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Wow its time he figured it out
 
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