Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 27 November 2014

Biting Back: The Arsenal Roy Keane remembers was more potent than Wenger's squad of 2014

Arsene Wenger is determined to stop Arsenal's season from fizzling out
Arsene Wenger is determined to stop Arsenal's season from fizzling out

Roy Keane once said as a player that he resented the ceremony of trophy presentations so much that he would rather the team were given them in the dressing room, so his verdict on Arsenal's reaction to their FA Cup semi-final penalty shootout victory was hardly a surprise.

"These Arsenal players need a reality check," he said on ITV after the Gunners came from behind late to force Wigan into extra-time, eventually going through on spot kicks, 4-2 following a 1-1 draw over 120 minutes.

"They're celebrating beating a Championship team," Keane pointed out.

"We saw last year when they got in the top four, they celebrated at Newcastle," he went on. "We're talking about Arsenal football club here. It's about winning trophies."

Put it this way, you would never have caught Keane taking a camera-phone selfie on the pitch (unlike Arsenal pair Santi Cazorla and Aaron Ramsey).

It has been pointed out, not unreasonably, that Arsenal were celebrating reaching the FA Cup final, rather than reflecting the calibre of their opposition.

They were eight minutes from humiliation until Mertsacker's equaliser.

But Keane has a point. It has been so long for Arsène Wenger's players that none of them knows what it is like to win a trophy for the club, hence the reaction at Wembley.

The Arsenal football club that Keane remembers is a lot more potent than the one of Wenger's players now.

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