Wenger: “Diarra panicked”

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I was just on Arsenal TV Online and saw the first interview given by Arsene Wenger since Lassana Diarra’s exit to Portsmouth. While I can’t really list it all word for word (that would take me hours to write down!) I thought I’d post the crux of the interview for everyone to read.

Diarra panicked, according to WengerThe interview began with Wenger being asked whether he was disappointed to lose Diarra. He replied that he was disappointed because he fought had to get him and fought hard to keep him, but eventually had to let him go. He stated that the major reason he left was because he could not be guaranteed football with the congestion in the midfield. Wenger went on to name Cesc Fabregas, Mathieu Flamini, Denilson, Abou Diaby, Gilberto Silva and Alex Song as the possible options in midfield. He finished the question by stating that Diarra was demanding but he had to be let go because he was not outstanding compared to his midfield colleagues.

The second question Wenger was asked focused on whether he thought Diarra had been impatient. He replied that he thought he had, and that the pressure Diarra put on himself increased his impatient. He explained that because he had been in the same situation for so long at Chelsea and only joined the club on 31 August, after Arsenal began training, his patience was tested too far. Wenger pointed out that he felt Diarra panicked.

The third question Wenger was asked was whether Diarra could have gone out on loan instead of being sold. He replied that he felt the balance needed to be right within the team and there were too many variables at play, namely that Diarra may not even play if he was out on loan. Additionally, he felt that loaning him would not solve the issue of having too many players available in the centre of the pitch.

The fourth and final question Wenger was asked on the topic was whether or not he would be signing a replacement, to which he emphatically replied, “No!”

You can read my thoughts on Diarra’s exit in the post I left earlier today. What do you think?

Have your say on the interview by leaving a comment.


44 thoughts on “Wenger: “Diarra panicked”

  1. Our dear boss reminds me of Good old jim in The Vicar of Dibley – No no no….. then a Yes, in somebody comes so I wont be surprised to see an addition –

    Diarra, impatient…… i can think of a few other words I would use – but mainly Selfish – he obviously didnt put the team/squad first, gutless – could not stay and prove his worth…

    Hey Ho …..

  2. he doesnt give a shit about the rest of his team. same at portsmith… i heard him say “they know as soon as a big club get interested in me im going to leave”


  3. I say forget about Diarra. I think Wenger said it all when he said that 1. he panicked (never a good state of mind for making decisions); and 2. he wasn’t better than the rest of our midfielders. He wasn’t around long enough to really merit much enmity or more discussion.

    I am more concerned about RVP. My heart agrees with Spanish Fry, but part of me worries that we can get away without him most of the time but that at some point it will cost us. I think his ability to create goals from nothing (see goal vs. Inter game last summer) and almost maniacal will to not stop until he has beat you could be the difference in certain matches such as the upcoming ones with Milan. I hope that he comes back filled with energy from all his time off and absolutely torches everyone we meet for the rest of the season. I think he may particularly important in the CL for his ability to ‘solve’ defenses where our other strikers might be frustrated.

  4. Wenger Wenger Wenger, i dont understand him sometimes…

    if he bought Diarra as a midfielder then lets him go and sees he felt it become congested in the midfield what did he think was going to happen,Diarra come in and maybe swallow Denilson so he canhave the same number still come Wenger..stop being stubborn!!!

    what is wrong with jus buying a winger right now and injecting a bit of fresh blood,stop this converting of players its great when it works but um sick of it i jus want us to win something

  5. who fuking cares he is just another french wanker that shows no love for the club he just after money he could of gone to newcastle but they said get fuked we are not paying you 90 000 a week he is not even that good he thinks he is hot shit but he is not just a greedy wanker!!!!!!

  6. Diarhea is gone let’s move on! The guy was a fucking big headed big mouthed, big egoed twat with a high opinion of himself!! If you’re that good why the fuck couldnt you displace 35 year old Makelele at Chelsea you numpty!

  7. Also, sorry for the somewhat shabby summary of the interview – it’s quite hard to record what someone is saying and put it into words! Respect to journalists around the world!

  8. What do people think of us signing Klaas Jan Huntelaar from Ajax?

    With RVP always injured i believe we need another proven goalscorer

  9. Did Wenger say anything about the Flamini contract situation in the interview?

    AW needs to learn from last year when he didn’t bring in a striker, even though we had injuries in that department. We certainly paid for it by almost missing out on top European football.

  10. No doubt he is an ignorant impatient prick, but looked a damm good player.

    As a fellow Goon pointed out, couldn’t Arsene have played him a bit more in place of Eboue or Walcott on the right. Lets hope Flamini stays & that this season isn’t a one off.

  11. my opinion is simle to believe him playing in regular team.now i wanna think about my team future.i wan’t warry about cup b/c we’ll collect it, the main thing i support ARSENAL is looking good football.ARSENAL youngesters had showed me and will show me.that is it

  12. diarra is a good plyer than diaby n denilson! but he’s impatient. N for that he made a bad bad mistake because he cant play for france if he is in portsmouth innit? Wenger should train Diaby how to pass the ball because he always wanted to show off because he’s still young. Diarra is more determinate than those 2 players. nuff said!

  13. Who cares for Diarra,!!!
    I want Wenger to sign Dimitrov”the new Ronaldinho”and Mputu”the new Eto’o.
    Had I known is always at last.

  14. £3.5 million profit in under 12 months is great business.
    We didnt need him tat the time and still dont. AW, IMO, simply saw an opprtunity to make some dosh, now the exit…
    I reckon AW will bring someone in for sure. You wait and see. The sooner we get Carlos Vela down on that left wing the better. Come on Arsenal…….

  15. Dear Arsene Wenger

    You are a great couch, many people admire your couching qualities. I am amongst the many Ugandans who are arsenal funs/supporters. We are not happy to see the struggles from the left wing. Get us a player at the left wing possibly “Young” from Aston Villa.

  16. why is it that everyone thinks they know better than the manager, the ins and outs of the team and what it requires etc .. can you not see what balance Eboue brings to the team now he is gone. I think he has just become a scapegoat and thats just fan blindness. Same with Diarra – hes situation was understandable and he did add with panic but he is far from a wanker etc which is what only some of you unintelligent prats seem to be able to manage to spell

  17. Stevo, I’m with you, although I don’t see the need to insult the rest of the board. For the most part, chat boards are about having a chance to voice one’s opinion, so if we just assume that Le Boss is always right, there isn’t much to discuss, is there? However, I do agree that assuming that Wenger actually 1. knows what he is doing and 2. has a lot more information than we do, is a good starting point.

    BTW, I also agree regarding Eboue’s value to the team. I think (hope) we can get that balance back — which was missing with Theo out on the wing– when Rosicky returns to the left and Hleb moves back to the right.

  18. Why are we all posting about someone who has now GONE – come on fans lets get on with what is important.. our club and three points away at Fulham

    Eboue – great player and his loss to ACON is obvious to me, just wish he could stop going for a Gong at RADA!!

    Theo – frustrating at the moment, yes, but the more games he gets, he will get more confidence… (By the way, he went to my school!!!)

    Thomas is back – great news

    At the back, for me has to be Willy and Hoyte alongside, give the boy a chance, he was solid second half against Spurs..

    Flamini – we need the club to sort his contract ASAP!

    Up front – Theo and Ade to begin, let the boy run off of Ade – all could work well

    The midfield, Thomas, Alex H, Cesc and Flamini

    See – easy as that, three points in the bag!!!!!!!!!!

    Great to see Keegan back in management, like our boss, good honest guy, loves to attack in games, and Newcastle could for the first time in a while be pleasing to the eye, as long as its after we have taken three points at home and a cup win….

  19. Hi VicGonner – was not aimed at the board or in general fans constructive debates and open cristisim. Just some fans are quite disrespectful to a team you support – and support means just that through the good, bad and the ugly. I mean we are joint top on points, still in all cup comps and some people speak as though Arsenal are relagtion battling. Wise up and realise the Diarra is not a Wanker simply because he was impatient and blind to the long term future. His priority is to play in euro2008 and thats his aim. He was clear about that. Same with Reyes in a sense. Does not mean they are Wankers.

  20. At least we got a profit for Diarra.
    It’s funny how Wenger stays brutally honest while being completely complimentary and neutral about a subject.

  21. jane..i agree with u on 2 things 1. Theo is a bit rusty and needs more game time to correct it and 2. Theos paring with adebayor upfront is a fruit worth biting.. th 2nd point is mainly coz without RVP we tend to lack pace and psych in attacking which are two qualities possessed by Theo.
    SF.. is it possible to do a post on th salaries of th squad? just curious

  22. If Arsene’s comments referred to above are accurate, then I
    suspect that he isn’t being completely truthful.

    He fought hard to get Diarra, he fought hard for Diarra to stay, yet was aware from Day 1 (i.e. even before signing Diarra in August 2007) that our midfield was already congested?

    That does not compute! Arsene is a highly intelligent man, and knew exactly why he bought Diarra at a bargin basement price at the time…and it wasn’t with a view to making a profit on the player 5 months later.

    Arsene also apparently stated that he won’t be replacing Diarra in the transfer market. That’s interesting.

    Arsene knows as well as we do that no other player within the current squad can provide the type of ball-winning-driving-take no prisoners approach that Flamini does, now that Diarra has left for pastures new.

    These are important qualities and are part of what we’ve been missing since Vieira et al left way back when.

    I fear that we’ll now struggle to win the midfield fights when Flamini is not in the team.

  23. with Diarra in the team Arsenal lost to Middlesborough and struggled against Newcastle. In fact the only victory with him in the team was against S.B in the CL and against Blackburn in the CC where he had a good game.

    I would assume Wenger got him as a replacement for Gilberto and Wenger was not to foresee the performance of Flamini. If it was not for the euro2008 then Diara would of stayed I am sure. Gilberto is past his best now and may not feature next year. Flamini future is still uncertain and Diaby and Denilson have not yet performed consistanly. So next year could of been good for Diarra but he could not wait. Wenger was not to know this aspect of him either.

    One positive is that by selling Diarra is it relieves the congestion in midfield and maybe Wenger letting him go is an indication that Flamini new deal is looking good

  24. Diarra leaving reminds me of one Nick Anelka! Am sure he’ll be somewhat missed as indeed he did year the red n white shirt but i am certain he will miss us more thinkin of what could have been. All the best though.

  25. Diarra does not deserves as much criticism as he is getting. He had significant time with no 1st team soccer for chelsea, which makes it understandable that he is impatient; although perhaps he should have waited for the end of season to really decide his future.

    Also,one’s first love should always be to playing football and then to his club,for me his need to play football over staying at arsenal is understandable and from Wenger’s comments in regard to Diarra not being of the same quality as the rest of the central midfield, it is probably in both arsenal and diarra’s best interests, that he move on.

    good luck to him, i say 🙂

  26. Flamini is a knob – all he does is go out and get drunk after games I’ve seen him so many times wankered with Hleb. He is fairweather – you wait for him to drop in form.

    Diarra is a pussy.

    We need the new Ronaldinho.

  27. Right John, If Flamini is getting drunk after all the games, that is up to him, but he is always 100% in the games and I believe could push for Arsenal player of the season do far, whatever he does in his spare time, he never interacts it with his arsenal form, the man is a god for us atm, Wenger make him sign!

  28. To those that ask why Diarra is getting criticised, I’ll sum it up from my perspective.

    1. Guy is at a big club (Chelsea)
    2. Guy leaves Chelsea to move to another big club (Arsenal) expecting to play a decent amount of games
    3. Guy leaves Arsenal for Portsmouth because he is not being played enough

    (By the way, up until this point, I have no problem with him. It’s what comes after that deserves criticism)

    4. Guy says he will leave Portsmouth for a big club if the right offer comes along signing a clause allowing him to do so and saying he doesn’t want to fight for his position in the team. He fails to realise that he’s just been at two big clubs and the reality is that if he does move to another one from Portsmouth he’s not likely to start straight away and will need to fight his way into the team. Essentially, he’s gone backwards.

    Now if he had left just because he wanted more first-team football I could understand that, but these comments show he’s hoping to show off his skills and move to a big club. Which he’s already been at twice before! The guy is a fool!

  29. eto to arsenal in the summer thats what we need, buffon in goals micah richards in defence be unstoppable then.

  30. Griffo, while we are wishing for things, I would like brilliant, funny, and fantastically good looking. Oh! this is the internet, so you might as well believe that I am all of those… 🙂

  31. What a fantastic response to the draw against Birmingham. Eduardo was fantastic Clichy is a fantastic crosser of the ball and Adebayor is a power house.Wenger mixed the style of play,long ball crosses to Adebaqayor with intricate passing, this is what we didn’t do against Birmingham. the only disappointing result Is that Reading should’ve got at least a draw against Manure they played fantastically well and Manure were really poor but then again that what they do well. Play badly and get a result.Maybe to be level on point at this stage of the season is a good thing it will push the players to work harder. No room for complacency. Hopefully the players don’t take their foot of the gas now.

  32. gtrat win, i think arsenal had the only comfortbale win out of the top teams that played yesterday. a good 3-0 win for the arsenal, adebayor is key for us if we are going to win the title. Man Utd wojn 2-0 but Reading could have scored 5 or 6, on a different day it could have been so much different. Reading were desperately unlucky. Chelsea won 1-0. but once again Birmingham had fight in them and thet could have snatched it. A great response to the draw last week. 2 cup matches next, then back to the league against Keegan’s Newcastle. Our next 6 games will test hoe strong the arsenal can be. we have – Spuds in the carling cup, then Newcastle in the F.A., then Newcastle in the prem followed by Man CIty in the prem, then we play Blackburn in the prem, after that the almighty clash wiv AC Milan in the cahmpo league.

  33. I like watching Diarra play, and it would have been nice if he could have earned a spot in the Arsenal side.

    SF – I’ve revamped my blogging setup with a new address: wickeddeflection.com

    I like the new look around here.

  34. Diarra is not a regular 1st eleven and only one season in Arsenal team and yet you guys have discussed about him in 3 different posts. surely he’s somebody…

    my comment, he’s being thrown into big team too soon and unfortunately at wrong team. arsenal has too many central midfield players.. too many.. same as Chelsea.. very wise for him to leave.. it’s just that what’s he thinking when he made a move to Arsenal just a year ago…

    Did MU play badly? which game did u watched, FUL vs ARS or REA vs MU? no comment lah…

    who has tougher game for the next 3??

    Man Utd v Portsmouth
    Arsenal v Newcastle

    Tottenham v Man Utd
    Man City v Arsenal

    Man Utd v Man City
    Arsenal v Blackburn

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