ARSENE Wenger has been accused of being “not good enough” by ex-Liverpool player Graeme Souness and former Arsenal coach George Graham as Premier League and Champions League success look destined to evade the Gunners once again.
Arsenal fell to a surprise 3-1 defeat in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie with Monaco on Wednesday and currently sit 12 points adrift of Chelsea in the English top flight.
It is a result that has drawn scrutiny of the French coach, who admitted he is under pressure to improve results, though his side could move into third position in the Premier League with a victory at home against Everton on Sunday.
However, Souness thinks that it is wrong for Wenger to keep getting away with Arsenal failure and he does not think he would has survived this long at another club.
“At the start of each season, we talk about favourites for the title. We don’t talk about Arsenal in that breath,” the former Scotland international told The Times.
“Then we get to what Arsenal will do this year, but already know the answer. Arsenal will do what they have done for the last decade: they will look fabulous when bashing up small teams at home then get rolled over by the big teams. Their recent win at Manchester City is the exception that proves the rule.
“We also know that they will qualify for the Champions League, come through their group and lose their last-16 tie. In the past four seasons they have gone out at this stage to Barcelona, AC Milan and Bayern Munich (twice) and, barring a phenomenal performance in Monaco, it will happen again.
“Wenger wouldn’t get away with it at another club. It’s not good enough. He’s too nice to players, won’t control their indiscipline and won’t spend on players. It amazes me that you never hear any of his former players criticising him.”
Ex-Gunners boss Graham also openly castigated the current coach, questioning his team selection and stating that simply achieving a qualifying berth for the Champions League each season is not good enough.
“There are a lot quesions to be answered at Arsenal right now, not only about the positioning of Danny Welbeck, but also why is Santi Cazorla playing wide left and why is Mesut Ozil playing wide?” Graham said on Radio 5 Live.
“Only Arsene knows the answers but I am sure he knows what he is doing and Arsenal will finish in the top four again this season.
“In my mind, though, that is not enough. Arsenal should be among the challengers to win the title.”