Arsène Wenger has likened his feelings this week to that of a boxer suffering a knockout punch.

Defeat at Old Trafford all but ended Arsenal's hopes of silverware this season but it wasn't for the want of trying. The Gunners were arguably the better team on the day, as they have been in the majority of matches this term.

Despite being distraught in the aftermath of Sunday's loss, the Frenchman is fully focused on the job ahead.

"Now I am focused on tomorrow's game but I was very low," said Wenger. "I worked with my staff harder than ever and it is very difficult to take. We felt we produced the performance.

"It is difficult to take moving out of everything in one week. You feel like a boxer who has got a good knockout. You are dizzy but want to continue the fight. But for three or four days it was very difficult."

Over the next few weeks, the conclusion to the season will be played out. After that, though, Wenger will have time to relax and reflect. With all the trials and tribulations of the last nine months, it could be expected that the Frenchman might enjoy the time off.

"Not really," said the manager. "What I am looking forward to is coming back to fight. What happened to us in one week, being knocked out as we have been, you want to come back, cancel your holiday and start the next season."


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18 Apr 2008