Join Now  | 
Home About Contact Us Privacy & Security Advertise
Soccer America Daily Soccer World Daily Special Edition Around The Net Soccer Business Insider College Soccer Reporter Youth Soccer Reporter Soccer on TV Soccer America Classifieds Game Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalk Soccer America Confidential Youth Soccer Insider World Cup Watch
RSS Feeds Archives Manage Subscriptions Subscribe
Order Current Issue Subscribe Manage My Subscription Renew My Subscription Gift Subscription
My Account Join Now
Tournament Calendar Camps & Academies Soccer Glossary Classifieds
Relief for Wenger after Italian escape
by Paul Kennedy, August 24th, 2011 8:55PM
Subscribe to Soccer America Daily

MOST READ
TAGS:  arsenal, england, uefa champions league

MOST COMMENTED

[UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE] Once known as the "Invincibles," Arsenal's Gunners were about to become the "Invisibles," but they escaped an early exit from the UEFA Champions League when they rallied for two goals and beat Italy's Udinese, 2-1, on the road to advance to the group stage of the UEFA Champions League group for the 14th season in a row.

After the Gunners opened the 2011-12 EPL season with a draw at home and loss on the road and sold stars Cesc Fabregas and Samir Nasri, the pressure mounted on Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger.

The turning point in Wednesday's game came in the 59th minute with the score tied 1-1 when Wojciech Szczesny saved Antonio Di Natale's penalty kick. Ten minutes later, Theo Walcott put the series away with a goal to make it 2-1 on the night and 3-1 on aggregate.

“There was only one team on the pitch in the second half,” said Wenger. “Szczesny’s save was the turning point at 1-1. It kept us qualified and you could see that mentally it had an impact on their belief and they were not the same team after they missed the penalty. When we finish the game with all our players, we win games.”

Wenger feels the win will lift the pressure on his players.

"There has been a little bit of pressure for Arsenal to play in the Champions League," he added, "and with the players that have left, the pressure would have increased if we had lost. There's a strong attitude and spirit inside the team."

He said Arsenal remained strong despite the criticism.

"We live in a society where everyone has an opinion on everything," he said. "I'm like someone who flies a plane for 30 years and I have to accept someone can come into the cockpit and fly it better than I do. But that's our job and we have to accept it. I would like to say that the club is in, overall, a very strong position because for 14 years on trot we play in the Champions League, we have a new stadium, a fantastic training ground, a very strong financial situation and a very strong team. Sometimes you have to take a distance from the catastrophes people have predicted."



No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
What They're Saying: U.S. Department of State travel alert    
"Euro Cup stadiums, fan zones, and unaffiliated entertainment venues broadcasting the tournaments in France and across ...
What They're Saying: John Stiles    
"It can't be a coincidence -- it seems almost to be of epidemic proportion." -- John ...
U.S. Open Cup: NASL-USL battle resumes    
Nine NASL-USL meetings, including the first meeting between Oklahoma City rivals Rayo OKC and Energy FC, ...
Video Pick: Yet another Dimitri Payet free-kick golazo    
Euro 2016 host France beat Cameroon, 3-2, in a friendly thanks to a last-minute goal by ...
Video Pick: DaMarcus Beasley scores a beauty    
DaMarcus Beasley, the only U.S. veteran of the 2002, 2006, 2010 and 2014 World Cups playing ...
What They're Saying: Jurgen Klinsmann    
"This is a little bit like two years ago. We talked about that with the Ghana ...
USL Rewind: Louisville City short-circuits Battery    
Charleston's home unbeaten streak dating back 29 games over more than two years ended Saturday when ...
Copa Countdown: Argentina threatens pullout; Navas out    
There's good news and bad news for fans hoping to see Lionel Messi play for Argentina ...
Draw: 2016-17 Scotiabank Concacaf Champions League    
MLS's Sporting KC and the Vancouver Whitecaps will meet in the group stage of the 2016-17 ...
By the Numbers: MLS home and away, best and worst    
New York City blew a 2-0 lead against Orlando City and had to settle for a ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives