ARSENE Wenger was left lamenting a “huge, huge blow” as Arsenal were beaten 3-1 by Aston Villa in their opening home game of the Premier League campaign.
“It’s hugely disappointing to start the championship with a defeat,” he said, as he attempted to digest a growing list of problems with the season one game old.
“We are there to spend money,” he said. “People say: ‘Buy players, buy players, buy players … ‘ But who? We analyse every single player in the world and work 24 hours a day for that. We are serious about it. Until we buy players we have to win football games.”
Wenger was unhappy with the referee Anthony Taylor “I didn’t like his performance but more than his performance I didn’t like his spirit of how he refereed the game,” the Arsenal manager said: “The linesman said he to me he did not give the penalty and he was at the level of the tackle, so why does the referee who did not give the penalty straight away suddenly give the penalty? That is what is amazing to me.”Concerns stretch beyond an early setback as Wenger counted the cost of a series of new injuries. Kieran Gibbs, Bacary Sagna, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Tomas Rosicky and Aaron Ramsey are all nursing problems. “As well as to lose the game, we have many injuries, many kicks, many on the treatment table,” Wenger said. “We have some trouble to recover some players for Wednesday night.”
There is precious little time for Arsenal to recover before their Champions League qualifier against Fenerbahce. They travel to Turkey on Tuesday.
Villa beat Arsenal thanks to two Christian Benteke goals and a late breakaway goal from the debutant Antonio Luna. Laurent Koscielny was sent off.