Arsenal's Arsene Wenger Being Savaged by Self-Serving, Cynical Attacks

James Dudko@@JamesDudkoFeatured ColumnistDecember 13, 2012

ST ALBANS, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 20:  Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger look on during a training session at London Colney ahead of tomorrow's UEFA Champions League Group B match against Montpellier on November 20, 2012 in St Albans, England. (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)
Mike Hewitt/Getty Images

Enough is enough. Arsene Wenger is not immune to criticism, but that does not mean he deserves to be subjected to the kind of self-serving, cynical attacks that fill the UK press this morning.

Wenger is being publicly ripped apart by dark and ugly half truths, shouted by an angry mob, seeking to service their own agendas. The chief culprit has to be ex-Gunner Stewart Robson.

Why do people take Robson's opinions so seriously? The day after the farcical defeat to Bradford City, Robson went on Sky Sports and proceeded to eviscerate Wenger's managerial credentials and his character.

Robson referred to Wenger as a "dictator" and pointed to a faltering relationship with assistant manager Steve Bould. This is not the first time Robson has declared Wenger and Bould don't see eye to eye.

Yet it's also not the first time he has failed to offer any proof, or establish any credence to his claims. However, fuelling the fires of a supposed rift with Bould, reinforces the view Wenger is a "dictator" and so serves Robson's agenda.

It's no surprise that Steve Bould is being used in this way. When Arsenal began the new season with three clean sheets, there was something uncomfortable about the level of praise Bould received.

Arsenal's new-found defensive solidity was all down to Bould and nothing to do with Wenger. It was as if Wenger couldn't spell defender unless Bould showed him how.

At the time it was so obvious that as soon as Arsenal began conceding goals, it would be Wenger's fault. Bould, meanwhile, would bear no responsibility.

So it has proved and Robson is only too happy to put the boot in.

One of the highlights of Robson's Sky interview following Arsenal's cup exit, was the claim Bradford boss Phil Parkinson had proved himself a superior manager to Wenger.

Careful Stewart, your bias is starting to show. Because if that's the case, then congratulations Steve Tilson, you're better than Sir Alex Ferguson.

It was Tilson who managed Southend United when they shocked the Red Devils 1-0 in the 2006 League Cup. Ferguson had Wayne Rooney and Cristiano Ronaldo in that squad.

Robson's claim about Parkinson goes right alongside Piers Morgan's claim in a November interview for talkSPORT that Wenger should be replaced by a British manager to help promote more English talent.

Really? Is one of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Kieran Gibbs, Carl Jenkinson, Theo Walcott, or Jack Wilshere French and not told anyone?

However, the prevailing notion when criticising Wenger appears to be to never let the facts get in the way of the agenda. Never mind the report in The Independent, claiming Steve Bould is angry about the rumours of a so-called rift with Wenger.

Better still, to ignore Ray Parlour's claims, reported by London 24, that Wenger is no dictator. Parlour actually played for Wenger, but don't let that stop you, Stewart.

Debating the rights and wrongs of Wenger's tenure is sadly being taken by some as an opportunity to attack everything they don't like about the club. It should better informed than that.

There are criticisms to be made about Wenger. Specifically, the quality of his recent transfers and his insistence on relying on a formation designed to suit players who have since been sold.

Sadly, these legitimate gripes are drowned out by sensationalist headlines that serve the agendas of vultures determined to send Wenger packing in disgrace.

Whether you support Wenger or believe he must be replaced, he surely deserves fairer treatment than this.