Arsenal’s 3-0 defeat at Crystal Palace felt like more than a damaging defeat in their top four hunt.
It felt like the beginning of the end for Arsene Wenger.
[ MORE: Fans confront Wenger, players ]
The Frenchman, 67, seemed genuinely lost for words after the game as he refused to comment on his future with his contract set to expire this summer and still no decision has been announced by himself or Arsenal’s board. The delay is clearly having an impact on his players, while the fans vented their anger throughout the defeat and after it too.
With reports stating a two-year extension is on the table for Wenger to sign, the defeat at Palace not only put a huge dent in his hopes of leading the Gunners to a 21st top four finish in a row but also proved just how much of a rebuild is needed if he stays. With a failing squad, plenty of uncertainty about the manager and players staying on and extremely unhappy fans pointing fingers at Wenger and the board of directors, this has become one of the most volatile periods in Arsenal’s history.
With Arsenal closer (in terms of points gained) to Crystal Palace in 16th than Chelsea in 1st place, many more damaging stats emerged from the loss. This was the first time under Wenger that Arsenal had lost four-straight PL away games and also the first time they have been 14 points behind north London rivals Spurs in the standings since 1963.
What perhaps hurt more than those damning statistics was the fact that many of his players appeared to wave the white flag and his captain for the night, Theo Walcott, admitted that Palace’s players “wanted it more” and that they had let down both their manager and the fans.
No matter what happens in the coming weeks and months regarding the futures of Wenger and star players Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil, the defeat to Palace will go down as one of the worst performances in their Premier League history under the Frenchman.
Arsenal have now lost five of their last eight games in the Premier League and a bad situation continues to spiral out of control.