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Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger held a "frank, clear-the-air" meeting with his players on Sunday in the wake of Saturday's 6-0 drubbing at Chelsea, reports Jeremy Wilson of the Daily Telegraph.
According to the report, the manner of the loss left Wenger questioning himself and the players on the occasion of his 1,000th match in charge, although the club's backing for the Frenchman remains "extremely strong."
However, Rob Beasley of The Sun (subscription required) says Wenger has shown a "lack of backbone" after cancelling his media briefing ahead of the Premier League visit of Swansea City.
Arsenal defender Per Mertesacker has urged the club to appeal against early kick-offs, reports Martin Lipton of the Daily Mirror.
The Gunners had suffered heavy defeats in matches at Manchester City and Liverpool in lunchtime starts before the hammering at Stamford Bridge, and Mertesacker is quoted as saying:
I don’t know why, but it looks like we don’t fancy early kick-offs away.
It looks like we are going to have to apply to the FA to not play at 12.45 away. That would help us a lot.
We wanted to start very strong and show people we are good enough, but they scored the two very early goals.
We lost some balls when we tried to keep it desperately. They then caught us on the counter-attack. We tried to avoid that. But we missed it completely.