Wenger defends selections after Cup nightmare

Published Add your comment

Football News

Arsene Wenger insisted he had little choice but to field a weakened side as Arsenal were dumped out of the FA Cup.

The Gunners went down 3-1 at the Britannia stadium in a fourth round tie, and boss Wenger conceded that his youthful side could not cope with Stoke's physical style.

But with crucial Premier League games against major rivals Aston Villa, Manchester United, Chelsea and Liverpool in a 14-day spell coming up, Wenger clearly was concentrating on his club's title ambitions.

"I do not regret the side I put out, I did not have much choice. We had 10 injuries and a very difficult programme coming up," said Wenger.

"The game was more physical than technical, and physically they were stronger than us in a very simple game.

"We were exposed to a fight, and some of our players were a bit young and could not cope with it.

"Our selection was simple, take a look at our schedule and you must see we cannot play the same 11 every time. That is for sure.

"But if you do not win in such situations, it is my fault. I can only stand by the team I selected in the circumstances, we lost but there was not much room for manoeuvre in terms of players available."

Wenger joked: "I wanted to avoid a replay, that is why I sent on three experienced substitutes all together. And yes, it worked, didn't it. We have not got a replay!

"We have four very important games now in a short space of time, that is what we are focusing on.

"I wanted to win the game, and the cup. We didn't want to go out, but it was the sort of game that had we played at home we would probably have got away with it (fielding that team). But away from home it was a bit more difficult."

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE:

Stoke City
Premier League
FA Cup

Article Comments

Read more

Report author of article

Please let us know if you believe this article is in violation of our editorial policy, please only report articles for one of the following reasons.

Report author


This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

Want more content like this?

Like our GiveMeSport Facebook Page and you will get this directly to you.

Already Subscribed to Facebook, don't ask me again

Follow GiveMeSport on Twitter and you will get this directly to you.

Already Following, don't ask me again

Like our GiveMeSport Page and you will get this directly to you.

Already Subscribed to G+, don't ask me again