Verheijen tells incompetent Wenger how Arsenal can remedy injury woe

Arsenal Emirates 2

One of the biggest Arsenal critics has spoken out over the once again exhaustive injury problems engulfing the club.

The Premier League injury table appears long dominated by Arsenal football club. To borrow an analogy to the actual league table, the Gunners would consistently secure themselves Champions League football - and often would be champions.

Currently, Arsene Wenger's side are third - like they are in the actual division - and are just one more injury away from sharing top spot with Newcastle United and Tottenham Hotspur, who both curse an exhaustive injury list of eight absentees.

Arsenal possess five players with unknown return dates: Abou Diaby (anterior cruciate ligament damage to his knee) is hopeful he will receive first team football prior to the end of the season, but is perpetually injured. Aaron Ramsey (thigh), Theo Walcott (ACL), Jack Wilshere (ankle) and Ryo Miyaichi (hamstring) are also sidelined with undetermined return dates.

Superstar summer signing Mesut Ozil is out of action for another month while Tomas Rosicky faces a late fitness test to assess his availability for the club's trip to Stamford Bridge against Chelsea, tomorrow.

The fact that Arsenal always seem up there, challenging for the title as the team most often injured, is not a good sign and a trend acknowledged by long-time Arsenal critic Raymond Verheijen, a fitness coach and former caretaker manager of Wales.

"In the last few weeks, [Arsenal] again had several muscle injuries so based on that, I decided to go back on my timeline on Twitter because I remembered that I addressed this injury problem at Arsenal several times in the last four or five years," the Dutchman explained on the Off The Ball football podcast. "So I went back four or five years on my Twitter timeline and I saw that I had addressed it five or six times - at least once every year. 

"I summarised it and obviously there was big media attention and what I noticed over the last five years is that every time Arsenal in general, and Wenger in particular, [have injuries], they talk about bad luck and external factors [but they] must look in the mirror."

One week ago, Wenger launched an internal inquiry into the crisis engulfing his club as the Frenchman was quoted to be "concerned" at the amount of injuries, particularly muscular, suffered by members of his first team roster in the build-up to a title run-in.

Wenger is obviously aware of the matter, yet for Verheijen it is a "pattern" that has been forming for years. "There is some incompetence but as long as you don't understand the problem, then in reality you are unconsciously incompetent and that is the worst form.

"When incompetent people look in the mirror, they often see things they don't like and then the question is, what are they going to do? [The club are in] denial."

Verheijen believes the only way Arsenal will be able to absolve the situation is by bringing in fresh personnel to the coaching staff: "Wenger is working with the same people for ages already and that is probably one of the reasons why they are not able to solve their problems."

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