Wenger plays down pressure
14 May 2014, 20:26
Cape Town - Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger on Wednesday expressed confidence that
the pressure of the club's nine-year trophy drought will not derail his
side in Saturday's FA Cup final against Hull City.
"You don't play
with the history," he said. "You play with your quality and your desire
to play well. It is an opportunity and we have to take a distance with
time. We need to just turn up and play well."
Arsenal last won a trophy in 2005, when they beat Manchester United on penalties in the 2005 FA Cup final.
They have since lost two League Cup finals, in 2007 and 2011, and been beaten by Barcelona in the 2006 Champions League final.
matter what the result will be, this club -- and this is always most
important -- can deal with the consequences of any game," Wenger added.
is important is that we come out of the game and have the feeling that
we gave absolutely our best, our total energy to play at our best, and
then you always accept the consequences.
"No matter how much we
talk about it, you can win and lose, but you want to come out of the
game feeling you have done the maximum to win and that is what we want
Meanwhile, Wenger says that he is happy to field
Bacary Sagna and Lukasz Fabianski in the final despite uncertainty over
The contracts of France right back Sagna and Poland
goalkeeper Fabianski are due to expire shortly and both have rejected
new deals from the club, but Wenger has no qualms about selecting them.
Sagna's situation, Wenger told a press conference: "I told you many
times that it's exactly the same as last week. The ball is in his camp
and I cannot influence that."
Asked if he had any concerns about
playing the 31-year-old, Wenger replied: "Not at all. I told you many
times: for me a professional is to give your best until the last day of
"That's for me the real professional. I don't doubt his integrity, his desire to win and his commitment at all."
- Wilshere 'working hard' -
has played in the domestic cup competitions for Arsenal this season,
with countryman Wojciech Szczesny the first-choice goalkeeper for league
and Champions League matches.
Despite reports that he, too, could
leave the club during the close season, Wenger again dismissed
suggestions that it would affect his focus.
"The answer is exactly
the same," said the Frenchman. "Honestly, I have always acted like that
because it would basically mean the guys are not professional.
have done that with Samir Nasri, with Robin van Persie, with everyone
when I knew they left or had a good chance to leave. I always played
them. If they deserve to play, they play."
Wenger reiterated his
opinion that Jack Wilshere will be fully fit to take part in the World
Cup with England, having been included in national coach Roy Hodgson's
23-man squad on Monday.
The 22-year-old midfielder made his
comeback from a fractured foot in Arsenal's 2-0 season-ending win at
Norwich City on Sunday, having been on the sidelines since early March.
has he been this week? Good, he works hard," said Wenger. "We have a
hard session today (Wednesday) again and he progresses. He played 30
minutes at Norwich. That was planned, he came out well.
"I think if you ask me about the World Cup, he should just have enough time to be fully fit."
Wilshere could start against Hull, Arsenal will give late fitness tests
to fellow England midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Belgian club
captain Thomas Vermaelen.