By Chris Harris

Arsène Wenger has called on his players to show solidarity as the criticism rains down on them following two big defeats in the Premier League.

Arsenal fell short against Manchester United last week and lost at Chelsea on Sunday to fall nine points behind the Blues at the top of the table. They conceded five goals in the process - three of them as a result of counter-attacks.

Wenger accepts that his team have had their defensive problems in recent matches but he is confident he can fix them. And he has no intention of damning his players in public. Instead, the manager wants his squad to stick together and steady the ship when Liverpool visit Emirates Stadium on Wednesday.

"It is not down to me to come out and say who made a mistake," said Wenger. "I believe it is important that I show support to my players and think collectively about how we cannot repeat the mistakes that happened to us in the last two games.

"It looks to me quite easy to solve having looked at the way we have conceded the last two goals and that is it. It is important that we support each other and show solidarity and show that people who try to destroy that are not right.

"This is a team that really wants to win and you have seen that on Sunday until the last minute of the game.

"Of course when you find yourself running after the score and you are playing against big teams, you threaten to be caught on the counter-attack and that’s what [happened with] the second goal on Sunday.

"When it is 0-0, we don’t over-commit but we have found ourselves in the position in the last two games where we have to take massive gambles. That puts you in a difficult situation."

Copyright 2017 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to as the source
9 Feb 2010