The Hard Tackle takes a look at the most important Arsenal news that have been making the rounds.
Arsenal will look to get back to winning ways as they visit Manchester City on Sunday evening. Ahead of the crucial meeting though, here’s a roundup of everything happening in and around the Emirates Stadium.
Wenger: Comments on referee taken out of context
Arsenal manger Arsene Wenger insists his comments on the referees have been taken out of context, after his Everton counterpart Ronald Koeman criticised the French boss for pinning the blame on the officials in the aftermath of the clubs’ clash at Goodison Park on Tuesday night.
Speaking in his pre-match press conference on Friday, Wenger was of the opinion that Koeman had been misled about his post-match comments. He said: “Concerning the referee: yes, I don’t agree with the performance of the referee against us on Tuesday night but I didn’t say a word about it.
“It’s the old trick that the journalists, young journalists who are very ambitious, do. They take a lie into the question for the next manager and hope he responds to it. If you read well what I said after the game, you will see that I didn’t say a word about the referee.”
Arsenal led the match against Everton through an Alexis Sanchez free kick in the first half, before Seamus Coleman headed in the equaliser at the stroke of half-time. However, as fatigue set in in the second half of the match, Everton troubled the Arsenal defence and finally got their winner through a corner in the dying stages of the match.
Alaba relishing another meeting with the team he supported as a kid
Bayern Munich defender David Alaba has revealed that he supported Arsenal as a kid and is eagerly looking forward to two “beautiful” games against the Gunners, despite the fact that the Bavarians have faced the North London outfit several times in recent years.
Speaking to Bild, Alaba confessed his love for Arsenal, saying: “Although we’ve faced them on more than a few occasions, for me games against Arsenal are always beautiful because I supported Arsenal as a kid, Playing in London is also fantastic – almost as good as the Allianz Arena.”
Earlier this week, Arsenal were drawn to face Bayern Munich in the Round of 16 of the UEFA Champions League, which sees the two clubs meeting at this stage for the third time in four years. Bayern have knocked Arsenal out of the competition at this stage on each of the last two occasions.
The Arsenal fans have lamented yet another pairing with Bayern, but Arsene Wenger’s men must put their heads in the right place and look to get the better of their German opponents when 16th February comes calling.
Arsenal’s best player, according to Wilshere
On-loan Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere has divulged who he thinks is the best Arsenal player he has ever taken the field with. That player is none other than the influential midfield general Santi Cazorla, who Wilshere opines has “magic feet”.
As reported by Daily Mail, Wilshere said after completing the Elite Skills Challenge: “The best player who I have played with who I think will be the best is Santi Cazorla. Everyone has seen he has magic feet.”
Wilshere has enjoyed his time on loan away from Arsenal, turning in influential performances for Eddie Howe’s AFC Bournemouth. So far, he has appeared 12 times for the Cherries – nine more than his tally for the entirety for last season. As he continues to get his rhythm back in midfield, he will be eager to reestablish himself in the centre of the park for the Gunners.
Other Arsenal News
Arsenal star man Alexis Sanchez has insisted that he’s happy at the Emirates Stadium and is concentrating on winning football matches for the club, pointing out that the onus is on the hierarchy at the club when it comes to his contract extension.
Meanwhile, German playmaker Mesut Ozil has urged Arsenal to sign his compatriot Julian Draxler from Wolfsburg, with reports indicating that Draxler’s acquisition may become an important factor in Ozil’s contract negotiations.