Football

Wenger admits money means pressure

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Arsene Wenger believes the money which has been pumped into football during his time at Arsenal has made the game "much more dramatic and tense".

The French manager has spent 13 years with the Gunners, achieving tremendous trophy success and developing many young players into superstars. They stand third in the Barclays Premier League this season, with a game in hand on second-placed Manchester United, and another top-four finish appears a likelihood.

A fascinating tussle with fourth-placed Aston Villa awaits on Sunday, and Wenger said: "It is a game where we can strengthen our position in the league, so that's why we will be completely focused."

Asked what differences he has noticed in the Premier League during his time in England, Wenger told an arsenal.com webchat there have been both positive and negative changes.

"It has become a worldwide product and when I travel nowadays I see how popular this league has become and we shouldn't take it for granted in England," he said.

"Firstly it's a worldwide product, secondly the ownership has changed completely, the structure of the game has changed. And don't forget, for example, referees have become completely professional.

"The league has become much more professional, the pressure has become much bigger, financial input has become much bigger which means the quality of the games has become much better.

"All that has changed. In some ways for good, and some ways a bit more negatively because it's less relaxed. Everybody is a bit more tense.

"I felt 13 years ago a defeat was less dramatic than it is now, it's much more dramatic and tense.

"It is because of money and it is all about the Champions League now, being in the top four. A few years ago it was a bit more open and as soon as you are a bit out from what is expected of you now, it is a crisis."

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Topics:
Arsenal
European News
Football
Premier League
UEFA Champions League
Manchester United
Aston Villa

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