Winterburn: Wenger hurt by supporter criticism

As speculation starts to emerge about Arsene Wenger’s future, one of his former players says that the Frenchman has been hurt by criticism thrown at him by supporters over recent times. Gunners legend Nigel Winterburn has suggested that one of the reasons why Wenger may not be sitting down to enter talks on a new deal could be due to some of the comments that have been made about his management in recent times.

It would be fair to say that for the first time in his career, Wenger has come in for plenty of criticism from supporters over the past twelve months. With Arsenal now without a trophy since 2012, many believe that he should be encouraging more activity in the transfer market rather than constantly seeing his top players leave.

Following on from this, Wenger has recently revealed that he “is not in the mood” to enter discussions about an extension to his current contract. There has been plenty of speculation on why this may be the case, with Winterburn suggesting that supporter pressure could be one of the reasons behind Wenger’s reluctance. The former defender told talkSPORT, “I think he has been hurt by some of the supporters who haven’t trusted his judgement. I think he’s just going to sit back, look at it and say, ‘can I re-energise this club? Can I re-energise this crop of players? And can I push them somewhere, even if we can’t win the title, can I at some stage put us in a position where we can challenge for the Premier League?’ I think that’s important for the supporters.”

Nevertheless, there is still plenty of time for Wenger to alter his approach and enter into discussions. His current deal doesn’t expire until 2014 and if he can mastermind some sort of improvement this year, the situation may change somewhat.

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