English Premiership

Wenger plays down title talk

2013-09-30 19:00
Arsene Wenger (AP Photo)

London - Arsene Wenger claims it is "ridiculous" to label his Arsenal team as potential Premier League winners so early in the season.

Wenger's side capitalised on slip-ups by their rivals to move two points clear at the top of the table with a 2-1 victory at Swansea City on Saturday.

That success was Arsenal's fifth successive victory in the league and provided another resounding answer to critics who just six weeks ago used the shock opening-day loss to Aston Villa to question whether Wenger should be dismissed after eight years without a trophy.

But although Wenger's former critics are now singing his praises, the Gunners boss insists there is no chance he will let his players get carried away heading into Tuesday's Champions League Group F clash against Napoli at the Emirates Stadium.

"In our job the most important thing is to have a good balance between ambition and humility; ambition because of course we want to win (the league), but humility as well because we know we have only played six games and to speak today about the title is absolutely ridiculous," Wenger said on Monday.

"What we have done is to continue to have the same ambition and I think the team has a good humility level and is conscious that we want to improve.

"What people forgot about is we are on a very long run, since March we have not lost a game and if you put the defeat to Villa into perspective it was just one single game that we lost in 21 now, so I think it was a combination of factors.

"All this together made the situation a little bit explosive, but purely on the results perspective it (the Villa defeat) was an accident that can happen.

"It was just about responding with the qualities that we already have in our group."

Arsenal, who beat Fenerbahce in the play-offs to reach the Champions League group stages for a 16th consecutive season, opened their group stage campaign with victory in Marseille.

Another three points against Rafael Benitez's Napoli would put them in a strong position before the double-header against Borussia Dortmund, last season's beaten finalists who lost in Naples on matchday one.

"We are in a tough group. If you look at the teams Marseille, Dortmund and Napoli, they all play at the top of their league and in big football countries, so you feel of course for us it is vital to continue our run and to come out of the group," said Wenger.

"But you know as the well the importance of the home games will be decisive in a group of that quality."


What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

29 October 2016
Sunderland v Arsenal, Stadium of Light 13:30
Manchester United v Burnley, Old Trafford 16:00
Middlesbrough v Bournemouth, Riverside Stadium 16:00
West Bromwich Albion v Manchester City, The Hawthorns 16:00
Watford v Hull City, Vicarage Road 16:00
Tottenham Hotspur v Leicester City, White Hart Lane 16:00
Crystal Palace v Liverpool, Selhurst Park 18:30
30 October 2016
Everton v West Ham United, Goodison Park 15:30
Southampton v Chelsea, St. Mary's Stadium 18:00
31 October 2016
Stoke City v Swansea City, Britannia Stadium 22:00
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team

Who will claim the Premier League title at the end of the 2016/17 season?

Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


With the Absa Premiership in full swing, who will be crowned champions when all is said and done? Will Mamelodi Sundowns defend their title? Or can Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates or Bidvest Wits mount a serious challenge? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.