After finally conceding that the title is out of reach in the wake of a crushing 2-1 defeat at Bolton, Arsène Wenger said that any blame over Arsenal's failings this season should be directed at him.
Tamir Cohen's late winner at the Reebok earned the home side victory yesterday and left Arsenal nine points behind Manchester United — and three adrift of Chelsea — with four games remaining.
Wenger said: “I feel the players have had an outstanding attitude this season. They are not to blame. If somebody is to blame, it's me. I pick the team.”
Yesterday's defeat may have been the first in the Premier League since mid-December, but they have only won one of their last six in the league — a run that followed their defeat in the Carling Cup final.
“It's very unsatisfactory because it's one of the easiest run-ins we've had for a long time and we didn't take our chances many times,” said Wenger.
“That's frustrating because you feel the potential is there but you have to take your chances. We still lack maturity, experience and calm in important situations.”
Arsenal host United at the Emirates on Sunday, but even Wenger now believes his side cannot catch Ferguson's men.
He said: “The chances are very minimal now but we have to continue to fight. We dropped too many points. It is very frustrating because we should have come home with nine points this week and we came back with two. It's a bit like the story of our season.”