Wenger responds to Mourinho's mind games
Arsene Wenger has started his version of the mind games by suggesting that this year's Premier League title is Chelsea's to lose at the moment. Arsenal failed to regain the lead at the top of the table after a 0-0 draw with Manchester United. After losing the lead only a few days ago, Arsenal were given this opportunity after Chelsea's draw with West Brom on Tuesday. The gunners, though, failed to take this opportunity after yet another disappointing result against a title rival.
According to Wenger, this is Chelsea's race to lose since they lead the table. He is also of the opinion that Liverpool and Spurs should be considered as challengers, as they remain just four and seven points behind Chelsea with 12 matches remaining. Speaking to the club's official site, he said:
"It is very open, only Chelsea can lose it because they are in front and all the other teams can win it. I always said that many teams are in it and it will be very tight until the end."
Wenger has also taken a dig at Chelsea's Jose Mourinho for repeatedly suggesting that his team are not in the title race. Without naming Mourinho, Wenger said that some managers prefer to say that they are teams are not in the title race because of their fear of failure. Wenger did confirm that Arsenal are in this race to win it. He continued:
"If you're not in the race you cannot lose it, if you declare yourself not in the race you cannot lose it, it's as simple as that.
"I think just that our job is to be ambitious and to try to win, and if we do not win to take full responsibility for that. It's as simple as that and that's how I see it.
"I say that yes we are in it [the title race], yes we will have a go for it, we will absolutely give everything to go for it and if we don't do it I will take responsibility for it, but I just see it like that."
A lot has been said about the lack of Champions League football helping Liverpool's title challenge. Wenger admitted that this was indeed an advantage, but he added that top players would rather prefer playing in both competitions.
"On a physical front, it's a huge advantage for Liverpool, but if you give them the choice - 'would you like to play in the Champions League?' - they have not played for seven years in the Champions League so they would say yes," said Wenger.
Steven Gerrard suggested after their 3-2 win over Fulham that they are 'dark horses' for the title.
Arsenal could potentially rest a couple of players against Liverpool on Sunday due to the Champions League last 16 match against Bayern Munich coming up in a few days time. After back-to-back league matches against Liverpool and Manchester United, the need for a breather may take precedence.