Belfast Telegraph

Keown still behind Wenger

Martin Keown retains total faith in Arsene Wenger even though he accepts it may need "radical surgery" to turn Arsenal into title contenders one again.

After appearing to be in the championship hunt for much of the season, the Gunners collapsed following their shock Carling Cup final defeat to Birmingham at the end of February and, in the end, could not even secure automatic entry into next season's Champions League.

"The manager will come under pressure now but no more than the pressure he puts himself under," said Keown. "The season didn't end on a high note for Arsenal but I am very confident in Arsene Wenger."

The Gunners have now gone six years without a trophy, leaving many supporters distinctly underwhelmed by Wenger and a minor percentage demanding change.

Keown, speaking during a visit of the Millbrook testing plant of England sponsors Vauxhall, added: "There could be radical surgery to try and improve the team and bring extra bodies in.

"I hope he is able to find the right ingredients because it just needs a bit more steel, competitiveness and experience.

"The results have to change. When they get themselves into a position of winning again, they have to make it count."

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