Arsene Wenger turned 67 on Saturday.
His Arsenal side didn’t reward him with the present of three wins as the Frenchman watched them labor to a 0-0 draw against Middlesbrough.
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The Gunners thought they’d snatch victory at the death but Mesut Ozil’s goal was offside and although they dominated possession, Middlesbrough looked dangerous on the break with Adam Traore, Alvaro Negredo and Gaston Ramirez all going close.
Speaking to the BBC after the game, Wenger thought his Arsenal side looked a little bit tired following their 6-0 win in the UEFA Champions League at home against Ludogorets on Wednesday.
“It is a game where you had a lot of possession but there were tired legs and you are prone to counter-attacks. You make it difficult for yourself. 75% possession but you could have lost the game, that is modern football. When you are not sharp, you lack creativity in the final third. I must say, we gave everything but we did not have the legs today.
“The energy levels were a bit down but we were intelligent enough not to lose it. We were exposed at times. When you cannot win, you must not lose. They had chances but our goalkeeper saved us today. Petr Cech had a good performance in decisive phases. We tried. You don’t win on command though. We lacked our creative potential around the box. That is part of it.”
He was also asked if he plans to have a drink to celebrate his birthday. Wenger’s response was classic…
“At least you can have a drink on your birthday. When you win you deserve it. When you don’t you need it,” Wenger said with a smile.
Regardless of a small slip up and an end to their six-game winning streak, Arsenal sits top of the Premier League on Saturday after the 10 a.m. ET games.
Surely that’s reason enough to have a few glasses of Champagne, Arsene?