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Top-flight tactics sadden Wenger

Arsene Wenger
Wenger's Arsenal are eight points behind leaders Liverpool

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger believes the Premier League has become too cautious tactically with teams preferring to defend rather than attack.

Wenger was speaking after Arsenal's 1-0 win over Bolton, who adopted a blanket defensive approach for the game.

"The Premier League has definitely lost something," said Wenger. "When I came in 1996, everybody had a go at you and there was space up and down the flanks.

"Sometimes you lost the game, but you could see more chances than now."

It's important that these teams do not get away with only defending any more

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger
On Saturday Arsenal had to wait for 84 minutes before the winning goal arrived, courtesy of Nicklas Bendtner.

"You go back 10 years and everybody played a strict 4-4-2," added Wenger.

"This year I can't remember any team coming here with two strikers, except Hull who played like that just at the start.

"It's maybe one of the weaknesses of the top Premier League sides this year that teams have learned only to defend away from home, the leading clubs have all struggled with that - even Manchester United, with all their offensive force.

606: DEBATE

"What's interesting in the game is that every new problem you face, the teams have to work to find the answer.

"That problem will only be temporary I think because it'll force the teams to work on movement, the technique and the creative side.

"It's important that these teams don't get away with only defending any more and they have to start to take risks as well."

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see also
Arsenal 1-0 Bolton
10 Jan 09 |  Premier League


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