Brown has no sympathy for Wenger

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The Independent Football

Hull boss Phil Brown claims Arsenal counterpart Arsene Wenger should have no complaints about having to play three games this week.

Wenger last night hit out over his side's Barclays Premier League fixture schedule after being held to a 1-1 draw at Burnley.

The game came three days after a trip to Liverpool and with another game against Hull to come at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday.

Hull, in contrast, have not had to play in midweek after their game against Everton was moved due to the Merseyside club's Europa League commitments.

Wenger intimated Hull could therefore have an unfair advantage but Brown points out his players have not had time off and feels Arsenal should have a squad big enough to cope.

Brown said: "We have had a free time of it, so everyone tells me - but as far as we are concerned it has been nose to the grindstone after a great clean sheet against Blackburn.

"The Premier League is physiologically brutal. It does take its toll, there is no doubt about that.

"Rest and recuperation is key but at the end of the day we have got our preparation to do for a big game on Saturday.

"I have looked at the size of squads. We are probably trading at around the third or fourth smallest squad in the Premier League.

"Wolves - topical this week - is one of the smallest and Bolton and Birmingham are below us.

"But in the top half some of these teams can boast 50 or 60 players.

"With that in mind I can't see any problem with two or three games in a week.

"If you ask any player, I was the same, games are the most important. They are the best way to keep fit. I think players just want to play."

Wolves manager Mick McCarthy this week sparked controversy by making 10 changes for Tuesday's game against champions Manchester United.

That also annoyed Wenger as United, one of the Gunners' title rivals, eased to a 3-0 win.

Yet McCarthy was prioritising this weekend's clash against Burnley and resting players accordingly.

That is something Brown - although he advocated a more positive policy in his side's seven-goal thriller at Old Trafford last season - does not have a problem with.

Brown said: "I think Mick is well within his rights. I know it was drastic, the fact he made 10 changes, but who is to say what is Mick's strongest team?

"There is only one man that can answer that and that is Mick McCarthy.

"He has identified two games in a three-game period where he can possibly get points, Manchester United not being one of them.

"Mick is in the early process of building a team and it is a bigger picture. I agree with him. It is the season-long aim of Mick McCarthy and Wolverhampton Wanderers to be in the Premier League for another year.

"We are all in the same boat at that end of the division.

"We played Manchester United last season and came away having been beaten 4-3 but getting something in terms of pride.

"Performances from individuals also painted a good picture for me for the following games and fortunately we stayed in the Premier League.

"But I'm not going to sit here and disrespect or disregard Mick McCarthy."