Arsene Wenger calls Steve Bruce sacking 'a mistake'

 

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has labelled Sunderland's decision to sack Steve Bruce as "a mistake".

Bruce left the Stadium of Light this week after a disappointing run of results, which came to a head with the home defeat to Wigan last Saturday.

Sunderland are reportedly close to appointing Martin O'Neill as Bruce's successor, but Wenger is not convinced that Black Cats chairman Ellis Short made a wise decision in removing the former Birmingham boss.

Bruce had two-and-a-half years at Sunderland, and impressed Wenger with many aspects of his work.

Discussing Bruce's exit, Wenger told Arsenal Player: "I think it is a mistake because the one to question at Sunderland is certainly not Steve Bruce.

"He has competence, the desire to win and he is the last one I would question on that.

"Unfortunately he went through a bad run and paid the price. I'm pretty sure that he should not have done.

"Change does not always sort out problems. History shows that it is not successful. It is statistically proven that a change of manager is not always successful.

"A club that creates its own instability is always in trouble - it is linked with technical stability, change of players, financially being in the red.

"All that together is linked with a change of manager."

Arsenal eked out a 2-1 home win over Sunderland in October, as Robin van Persie scored twice at Emirates Stadium.

The Dutch striker has shown irresistible form this season, scoring half of Arsenal's 26 goals in the Premier League.

Ahead of tomorrow's trip to Wigan, Wenger admits his team have been reliant on Van Persie's goals.

"At the moment I can't deny that but I believe that the likes of Gervinho, Aaron Ramsey and Theo Walcott can score goals and I believe they will," the Frenchman said.

"At the moment Robin is always on the end of things. I think he will continue but I also think it will change that the other players will score goals as well."

Arsenal defender Kieran Gibbs yesterday confirmed he would love to play for Great Britain at next year's Olympics in London.

Gibbs said: "To represent Team GB in the football competition next year would be one of the highlights of a British footballer's career.

"I am fortunate to be at an age that means I could be considered, subject to club commitments."

Meanwhile, Gunners goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny has told his Arsenal team-mates he will grow his hair in the style of compatriot Jan Tomaszewski if Poland get England in today's Euro 2012 draw.

Shaggy-haired goalkeeper Tomaszewski was the star of the show when Poland drew 1-1 with England in 1973, denying Sir Alf Ramsey's side a place in the following year's World Cup.

Szczesny said: "You might remember the goalkeeper who played against England in 1973. You should all remember him.

"So I'll grow the long hair and try to do the job as well as he did. I might have to wear a wig because there won't be enough time to grow it."

PA

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