European giants set sights on Arsene Wenger this summer

With Arsenal's place in the FA Cup semi-finals secured, Arsène Wenger insisted his team had been "outstanding" during the 5-1 home defeat by Bayern Munich last Tuesday, again blaming the referee for "killing" his team. "Now we recover good to play another big game on Wednesday". I will see in training how he feels and I haven't decided on the team that will start the game on Saturday.

"It just sums it up that two weeks ago he was an idiot and everyone said you have to leave, so he said: 'Okay, I go.' Today he is a hero", Wenger said. A few hundred supporters staged another protest march before the game demanding that Wenger isn't given a new contract.

Arsenal really need a win in this game but Lincoln City will believe that they can pull off a cup shock.

"I do not want to judge that, I am not able to".

However, rather than playing a team full of inexperience Wenger has used a balance of youth and experience in these games which I think is how it should be done.

The England forward said: "We went out there and did a job, we knew it would be tense in that first half and it was crucial to go in 1-0".

The Frenchman sees his Arsenal side take on non-league Lincoln in the FA Cup sixth-round on Saturday - the competition the International Football Association Board (IFAB) is targeting to trial video technology in for next season.

"I will travel down with the group as I don't want to miss any treatment, I will be in and around the lads and it will good to soak it all up at the Emirates", says Long.

Lincoln were the happier of the two sides as half-time approached, with Arsenal appearing to lack rhythm.

Arsenal saw this past year with Alex Iwobi who started off being played in early Cup games and managed to make is way into the first team as a regular.

"I've spoken to or have heard about others [former Arsenal colleagues] who would also love to come back".

"We respect that, sooner or later, we will be old news, fish and chip paper, but that is fine by us as long as when the dust does settles we have learnt from the experience, that we are better managers and better people as a effect of it". "And I felt as well that the team had performed well against Bayern and I wanted to give them a chance to find confidence back by winning the next game".

That observation was significant in light of Wenger's recent assertion that he meant to stay as a manager next season, whether it is at Arsenal or not.

  • Rogelio Becker