As featured on NewsNow: Football news

Wenger: Arsenal not alone missing leaders in Premier League

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger says they're not alone lacking leaders in the dressing room.

Wenger has acknowledged that a defender is required during the January transfer window but does not feel he can replicate the success of his great teams in the past.

Tony Adams, Steve Bould, Nigel Winterburn and Lee Dixon were his mainstays early on in his tenure and Wenger also highlighted the back four who featured in Arsenal's unbeaten season of 2003/04 as another outstanding unit.

But, with the game changing at a constant rate, Wenger believes there are a lack of aggressive-minded leaders to bring in.

"Certainly you had more before, yes," he said when asked if there were less leaders in the game today.

"If you look at the evolution of English football, when I arrived here I had the back four and all were English. But they were not only English, they communicated because they had the same culture, the same way to see the game, they were educated together and communication is an important part.

"We had a great defence after that, nobody spoke about them. The 'Invincibles' team were physically fantastic. Lauren, Kolo (Toure), Sol Campbell, Ashley Cole - that was a top back four.

"I believe as well that the young boys practice well on quality pitches, whereas before it was muddy and you could throw your body in - it created opportunities for defenders to work naturally on their defensive technique.

"Today it's all more about standing up (to opponents) and there is less physical commitment because the quality of the pitches is much better.

"Maybe, as well, because our societies are less aggressive, in the football education system you cultivate less that desire, it is more about the quality of the technique and maybe that creates less defenders."

Video of the day:

About the author

Tribal Football Staff

Have your say

Subscribe and go ad-free

For only $10 a year

  1. Go Ad-Free
  2. Faster site experience
  3. Support great writing
  4. Subscribe now
Launch Offer: 2 months free

Subscribe and go ad-free

For only $10 a year

Subscribe now
Launch Offer: 2 months free