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Column: Arsene Wenger not solely at fault for Arsenal trouble but he's the first one who should leave


It's March, when thoughts start turning to spring and Arsenal fans turn on their manager after yet another disappointing defeat in the English Premier League.

It is not hard to understand why - as reported by Sky Sports - 88% of Arsenal Supporters Trust (AST) members who responded to a survey say they do not support Arsene Wenger remaining in charge of the club beyond the end of the season.

Now according to captain Laurent Koscielny, problems at Arsenal lie far above Wenger's head.

In a way it's true, you can't blame the Frenchman if Jack Wilshere is the only player fighting hard to win the game and you can't blame him if Mesut Ozil kicks the ball in frustration instead of focusing to turn provider for his team-mates.

But let's not forget that it was Wenger who brought the likes of Mesut Ozil, Calum Chambers, Shkodran Mustafi, Hector Bellerin and Petr Cech to the club.

Why am I including the last two to the list? The Spaniard might as well be one of football's fastest players but his defensive skills leave a great deal to be desired. He's excellent when the team is pushing forward but when they are struggling in the defensive department he's always one of the first to make mistakes.

In the meantime, he has taken aim at Arsenal Fan TV, suggesting those involved are not true Gunners supporters.

As for Cech, I'm not entirely sure he will go down as a clever signing by the club. In the summer he joined from Chelsea, Wojciech Szczesny left the club for Italy to soon become Gianluigi Buffon's successor at Juventus. His first two seasons in the Serie A with Roma were incredibly convincing and at the age of 27 he is today one of the strongest goalkeepers in the game.

Amid all this, Arsenal still managed to bring important players to the club like Alexis Sanchez, Alexandre Lacazette and also Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang but you just don't overcome the mental weakness problem at the club by signing key offensive players in the transfer window.

In fact the area where Arsene Wenger struggled in recent years is his failure to inject the winning attitude, the winning mentality in his players.

In the past it was easy, he had the likes of Patrick Vieira, Thierry Henry, Dennis Bergkamp and Tony Adams in his squad, all players who had "winner" written all over them. But after the move from Highbury to the Emirates, the club started to sign players like Carl Jenkinson who described his move from Charlton Athletic as a dream come true, players who are just happy to wear the Arsenal jersey, regardless of the results.

That was the moment when the Frenchman had to make it clear that a club like Arsenal should be winning trophies for fun, instead he injected a mentality that finishing in the Top Four is an achievement, it is something to be proud of.

Remember the way they celebrated finishing fourth at the end of the 2013 season after they edged past Newcastle United away from home? One would have thought they won the Premier League by just looking at photos of the players celebrating the win.

But it was just a top four finish.

Fast forward to last September and Arsene Wenger is now saying how the Champions League is not as interesting as it used to be, in other words the club has "progressed" from celebrating a top four finish like a Premier League title win to considering Europe's most prestigious competition on the same level as the Europa League.

If Arsenal are to ever get back to the top they must act now. Make no mistake, it's already too late, Wenger had to be sacked at least five years ago, but as they say, when you hit rock bottom, the only way to go is up and if Arsenal are to improve they have to replace the Frenchman with someone able to inject a winning mentality in his players.

Someone better than Arsene Wenger.

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Arsene Wenger, Laurent Koscielny