Belfast Telegraph

George Graham tells Arsene Wenger to tighten Arsenal defence

By David McNeill

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has been urged to tighten up his defence by the man who built the great Gunners backline.

George Graham, who as Arsenal manager from 1986 to 1995 built a side renowned for its stubborn nature, detailed his concern after seeing Wenger's team leak eight goals away to Manchester United and four in defeat at Blackburn.

Arsenal brought in new recruits Per Mertesacker and Andre Santos to bolster their defence just before the transfer deadline, but Graham believes they should have been signed earlier.

“I think they left it a bit late to bring in all these players,” he said.

“Two weeks of the season had gone by, and he's not had time to work with the players he's brought in.

“Defensively they've not had enough time to work with the back four.”

Graham added: “It's been generally known they had to shore up the defence. Their attacking play was great against Blackburn at the weekend, but the old defensive problems cropped up and they ended up losing.”

Now Graham is waiting to see whether Wenger has recruited wisely.

“Some of the players he's brought in, the fans don't even know who they are,” said Graham.

“In the past he's brought in players, good players, that he's turned into world-class players. Now the jury's out.”

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