Arsene Wenger Wants Arsenal 'Angry and Even More Determined' After United Loss

Christopher Simpson@@CJSimpsonBRFeatured ColumnistDecember 4, 2017

LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 02:  Arsene Wenger of Arsenal shows his disappointment during the Premier League match between Arsenal and Manchester United at Emirates Stadium on December 2, 2017 in London, England.  (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Arsene Wenger believes Arsenal should be angry after their 3-1 defeat to Manchester United on Saturday and use it to fuel them going forward. 

According to the Sunday People's Steve Bates, he said: "I believe the result has to make us angry and even more determined. If I am a player, and I think with what we produced, we have a huge potential, and we lose the game, we cannot accept that."

The Gunners were on top for the majority of the match but left themselves a mountain to climb after some disastrous defending saw them 2-0 down inside 12 minutes, and they came up against an inspired David De Gea, who was on top form in the United goal.

Wenger said the Spaniard "is an outstanding goalkeeper" but believes the Gunners should nevertheless have found a way through. He added:

"But I take a lot of positives and I feel sorry for the players—that's why I'm angry. Especially when you produce that quality of performance.

"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."

Arsenal were a goal down after just three minutes when Antonio Valencia cut out a poor pass from Laurent Koscielny before playing a one-two with Paul Pogba—who drew in four Gunners players before offloading it back to the right-back—and firing United in front.

Manchester United's Ecuadorian midfielder Antonio Valencia (L) scores the opening goal during the English Premier League football match between Arsenal and Manchester United at the Emirates Stadium in London on December 2, 2017.  / AFP PHOTO / Adrian DENN

Shkodran Mustafi's indecision in front of his own goal under pressure from Jesse Lingard led to the visitors' second seven minutes later, with Anthony Martial producing a sumptuous flick to feed Lingard to double their lead.

United remained a threat on the break and looked to get forward where possible in a thrilling and often end-to-end encounter, but the remainder of the match was largely characterised by Arsenal dominance and the Gunners had 33 shots in total.

As ESPN FC's Mattias Karen noted, the hosts' errors proved too costly:

It was not just poor finishing that stopped Arsenal scoring, though. A remarkable performance from De Gea also kept them out at every turn.

Samuel Luckhurst of the Manchester Evening News and James Ducker of the Telegraph hailed the Spaniard's efforts:

On another day, the Gunners would have overcome the early deficit and could have scored any number of goals, such was the quality of their response.

Alexandre Lacazette was able to pull one back in the 49th minute, and Danny Welbeck should have had a penalty when he was brought down by Matteo Darmian. However, a counter-attack saw Lingard score again to restore the two-goal lead and ultimately seal the win despite Pogba picking up a red card with 16 minutes remaining.

While Arsenal's response—which could so easily have been to capitulate—to the early setback was encouraging, their defending offered a timely reminder of their frailties, and it's an issue they must eradicate if they're to progress as an outfit.

Aside from Liverpool on December 22, Arsenal don't face any top-half sides in the Premier League until the new year.

If they can replicate Saturday's attacking performance, they should have plenty of joy in those fixtures—including against the Reds—and they'll want to collect maximum points as they look to regain their spot in the top four, but the kind of errors they made against United are unlikely to go unpunished.


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