By Richard Clarke

If an optimist is someone who sees opportunities where others see problems then Arsène Wenger fits the definition perfectly right now.

The Arsenal manager is perceived to have many concerns after seeing his side slip to their fifth defeat of the Premier League season with a 3-0 reverse at Manchester City on Saturday. Not least skipper William Gallas, who was omitted from the side at the the weekend amid much speculation about his future.

On Monday, Wenger confirmed that Cesc Fabregas would coming in to replace the Frenchman as captain. Arsenal supporters will hope this decision restores some stability at the end of a month that has seen the Emirates Stadium side pick up three points from a possible 12 in the Premier League, albeit through a win over Manchester United.

“It has been an interesting few days,” admitted the Frenchman.

“But it has not been more difficult than that. When you don’t win, nobody jumps off the roof but the frustration always kicks in.

“It is part of management that you go through a period where it is a bit more difficult. But it has been nothing more than that. I am focussed on doing things well and in the right way. That is all. I am strong enough to let everyone have opinions and I am strong enough to do what I believe is right.

“That is why this is also a good opportunity for the team to show we have strength and ability.

“You know how the media works now, you go from catastrophe to fantastic but real life is somewhere in between.

“Even if at the moment we are frustrated it is not all doom and gloom. We have strong belief in our ability and we have a good opportunity to show that we care about the club and we believe in our strengths.”

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25 Nov 2008