Published: Tue, May 23, 2017
Sport | By Gary Shelton

Wenger cites 'hostile environment' for Arsenal's top-four failure


If you bring in the fact that Arsenal qualified for the Champions League for 20 years in a row then it is the only time they haven't while Arsene Wenger has been at the club.

After Georginio Wijnaldum opened the scoring in the dying seconds of the first half, Philippe Coutinho and Adam Lallana joined the Dutchman on the scoresheet.

Wenger, who has won three Premier League titles for the north London club - the last in 2004 - and six FA Cups is out of contract at the end of the season.

"A club like Liverpool need to be in the Champions League".

'That's the way it goes and I have to say you have to respect every competition because a European trophy is a European trophy and I think it will give everybody confidence and everybody experience, especially the young players if they feature in this.

"Of course you can look everywhere for where we dropped these points, but since January it's been a very hard environment for different reasons", Wenger said.

They are not yet guaranteed a place in the group stages and will have to negotiate a qualifier in August, but Klopp believes Liverpool have reached an important phase in their development and have earned the opportunity to tackle the continent's top names.

"But unfortunately the other teams ahead of us had a very good season".

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So even though Arsenal beat Everton 3-1 to complete the league campaign with five successive wins, the resurgence came too late.

"Usually at the end of the season you are exhausted", Klopp said, "but tomorrow I could start again".

'For development you need to feel the improvement, feel the next step that it's right'.

"We played in a lot of games really outstanding good football. At the moment I think we should focus on short term and what's going on on Sunday and in the cup final".

'We are not confident enough in general. "That showed what we can do".

"They don't behave like players who are disinterested in the future of the club".

"If you want, usually at the end of the season you're kind of exhausted, but I could start - and don't tell the players this - tomorrow because I'm already looking forward to what we can do". A club like Liverpool needs to be in the Champions League.

"I'm not protecting anybody", he said, continuing to take reporters' questions as he headed to the door following Sunday's post-match news conference. "Whether it is this week or next week, I don't know any dates but I am sure we will have a chat at some point".

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