EXCLUSIVE: Wenger said nothing after Arsenal hammering
Published 23:02 29/08/11 By John Cross
Stunned Arsenal players were further shocked after being humilia8ed by Manchester United - when manager Arsene Wenger failed to say a word to them following the game.
Wenger stayed silent in the dressing room after one of the worst days in the club’s 125-year history - a 90 minutes so bad that the Gunners have since offered a public apology as well as free tickets to another away game to the travelling fans who had to endure it.
Senior players expected the 'hairdryer' treatment from Wenger over the manner of their 8-2 defeat, but the Frenchman was lost for words.
Despite the fall-out from the defeat, however, Arsenal’s support of their under-pressure manager remains “rock solid.”
A club source said: “The board and everyone at the club is 100 per cent behind the manager who has brought us unprecedented success.”
Arsenal have taken the unprecedented step of announcing they will write to all their fans at the match and offer to cover the cost of a future away game.
“Sunday’s result was obviously disappointing for everyone connected with the Club," said a club statement. "Our travelling fans were magnificent throughout and we want to recognise their fantastic support.”
These steps were designed to head off fan unrest and any protests against Wenger, but several internet and public campaigns have been launched to call for his sacking.
Wenger is now under major pressure to buy before the transfer window shuts.
Arsenal have snapped up South Korea forward Park chu-young from Monaco, but the £1.8million deal is unlikely to satisfy the supporters.
The club are still hopeful of completing a deal for Bolton defender Gary Cahill, even though they had a £6m plus add-ons bid rejected last week. If they move closer to paying £12m up front, the deal could go through.
Rennes midfielder Yann M’Vila has topped the midfield wish-list, but the Gunners' £22m bid is short of the French club’s £30m valuation.
They have also made checks on free agent ex-England international Owen Hargreaves’ fitness and on Chelsea midfielder Yossi Benayoun and are being linked with Fenerbahce and Brazil defender Andre Santos .
Sochaux playmaker Martin Martin is back on the agenda too, and Arsenal are hopeful of making at least two more signings besides Park before the window shuts at 11pm on Wednesday.
Park, who snubbed French champions Lille at the last minute to join Arsenal, has completed his medical but has now flown off to the Far East on international duty.
Meanwhile, defender Armand Traore is set to be sold to QPR , while Wolves are the latest club to come in for young midfielder Henri Lansbury.