Arsene Wenger says Arsenal are in 'great shape' despite 10-2 thrashing by Bayern Munich

Wenger rejected the idea of any deep-rooted problems at Arsenal despite watching his side suffer the second-worst aggregate defeat in Champions league history

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Arsene Wenger claimed Arsenal are in “great shape”, despite suffering the second-worst defeat in Champions League history.

For the third time in a row, Arsenal suffered a humiliating 5-1 loss to Bayern Munich, consigning them to a 10-2 aggregate defeat that is only beaten by Sporting Lisbon’s record 12-1 demolition – also at the hands of the Bavarian giants.

But despite watching his side implode as Laurent Koscielny was sent-off after conceding a penalty in the second half to end any hopes the Gunners had of reaching the quarter-finals following Theo Walcott’s momentum-building opener, Wenger was keen to praise his players for showing “spirit and pride”. It was a strange claim that not even the most devout Arsenal fan could agree with.

With Wenger facing possible action over his astonishing outburst against referee Tasos Sidiropoulos for his performance at the Emirates Stadium, it suddenly dawned that he may not serve any sanction at Arsenal. Wenger is out of contract at the end of the season and yet to decide if he will sign a new two-year extension that has already been offered, and the felling is he is inching towards the last act of his 20-and-a-half-year reign at Arsenal.

After being asked about his own future and whether he had just managed his final match for Arsenal in the Champions League, he responded: “I don’t know. You always worry for headlines, I’m here to speak about football not about my future.”

Yet he seemed reluctant to accept there is a problem at Arsenal. Before the match, around 400 fans gathered outside the old Highbury East Stand to protest against Wenger’s reign and called for him to leave at the end of the season. Upon Arturo Vidal’s second goal that secured the 5-1 victory for Bayern, the “Wenger Out” signs once again appeared in the Clock End, and Alexis Sanchez’s reaction to the final goal appeared to be one of resigned humour.

But there is no problem, according to Wenger.

“What needs to change at this club? What do you mean?” Wenger responded to a question about the deep-rooted issues that the club clearly harbours. “This club is in a great shape, at the moment it’s going through a very difficult situation. So what needs to change is the result in the next game.

“We can compete with Bayern, we showed that in the first half. I believe the second half was a very difficult situation for us.

“Overall Bayern is a good team, they do what they want in Germany, what we cannot do in England. Nobody can compete with them. They take the players they want and they are a bit lonely on the market, which is not the case in England.”

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