Arsenal FC manager Arsene Wenger has insisted that too many draws at home and a long injury list hampered their title challenge this season.
Arsenal FC host West Bromwich Albion at Old Trafford on Sunday in what will be their last home game of the season. The Gunners will secure a place in the Champions League next season if they manage to match the result of Everton’s match against Manchester City tonight.
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger looked back at the Gunners’ home performances over the course of the season and insisted that the team’s title challenge could have lasted longer had they managed to eke out few more wins at the Emirates. Arsenal got off to a poor start at home this season as they suffered 1-3 loss against Aston Villa – which was their only league defeat this season. But Arsene Wenger believes that the Gunners would have remained in the title race had they managed to win against the likes of Chelsea, Manchester United, Everton and Swansea City at home.
“The fans at Emirates have been great the whole season and, of course, I would like to thank them. We started with a big disappointment by losing to Aston Villa at home but since then we have been strong at our ground.
“Overall we have missed one or two wins at home that would have put us really playing for the Premier League title. But now we have to get the team over the line [to qualify for the top four] and that’s always the most difficult thing.
“We started in the worse possible way. After rhat we had a good strong home record.
“The restriction we had was in the big games, when we only made draws and not wins in some of them. That’s where the missing points are at the moment because we are very close to the top. Maybe one or two wins at home would have made that difference.
“The regret we have of the season is that we have been remarkably consistent, [but] it is against the teams who did not fight for the Premier League title. But especially away from home in some of the big games, we could not claim the points.” – The Arsenal manager said.
Wenger also insisted that that injuries had a massive impact to the final outcome of their season as they had to do without the likes of Aaron Ramsey, Theo Walcott, Jack Wilshere and even Mesut Ozil for a considerable amount of matches.
“When we came out of Christmas, we were in a strong position and what you want then is to have your strong players available in March and April.
“We had too many injuries. It is very, very difficult – you can have one or two but after that when you have too many injuries you always have to play the same players and that is detrimental to the efficiency of the group.
“The regret we have is that too many players were out at the same time between Christmas and April.” – Wenger added.