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Arsenal boss Wenger: Blame me not players for Manchester United defeat

PUBLISHED: 23:14 03 December 2017 | UPDATED: 23:20 03 December 2017

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has told fans to blame him not the players after losing to Manchester United. PA

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has told fans to blame him not the players after losing to Manchester United. PA

PA Wire/PA Images

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has called for fans to lay the defeat against Manchester United firmly on his shoulders rather than his players – but also told his team to channel the disappointment into a determination to do better ahead of a busy December.

The Gunners lost 3-1 after conceding two early goals which effectively won the game for Jose Mourinho’s United, despite 33 shots on goal which saw David de Gea show world class form.

With fans split between hailing the superb attacking performance or bemoaning familiar defensive failings that have seen the North Londoner’s ship 10 goals in three games against Liverpool, Manchester and now the Red Devils, Wenger took it upon himself to shoulder the blame.

He said: “I blame myself as always,” a visibly angry Wenger said.

“I just want Arsenal Football Club to win. When the performance is of that quality you have to be efficient. So I blame first myself.”

Wenger also went on to show sympathy to his men after the defeat which saw them slip out of the top four.

With Thursday’s Europa League group finale at home to BATE Borisov in the Europa League and Sunday’s trip to Southampton, Wenger also called on the team to show character by not allowing the defeat to derail their chances of a top-four finish.

He said: “The spirit of the players, the attitude and quality of our combinations were top class.

“We have the experience to get better out of a game like that.

“I take a lot of positives and I feel sorry for the players, that’s why I’m angry.

‘We have lost games here against Man United where we didn’t deserve anything – but what makes you angry is that you produce that performance and in the end you have nothing to show for it. That’s very difficult to accept.”

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