Arsene Wenger believes fans protesting during Arsenal’s 1-0 win over Norwich on Saturday were venting out of “disappointed love”.
A small minority of Arsenal fans held up posters reading ‘Time for change’ and ‘Arsenal is stale – fresh approach is needed’ in the 12th minute at the Emirates Stadium, to signify 12 years since the team last won the title.
The dissent soon fell flat, however, as their objections were drowned out by a resounding chant of “there’s only one Arsene Wenger” ringing around the ground.
“I am a professional who has given 19 years to this club,” Wenger said.
“I have to accept the judgement of people. The only thing I don’t doubt is my sincere commitment to the club. After that I am sorry if I cannot keep 100 per cent happy.
“Maybe it is as well because we have been remarkably consistent. This season was a bit special because we were in a position for a long time where our fans believed we could win the league.
“We didn’t and that’s why I think it’s more disappointed love than real aggression.”
It was Wenger’s substitution that changed the game as Danny Welbeck replaced Alex Iwobi in the second half before driving Arsenal into the lead three minutes later.
The victory leaves Arsenal nine points behind Leicester, having played a game more, but with their title hopes extinguished Wenger’s men will have to settle again for a likely place in the top four.
Wenger added: “We had a serious, studied performance, a bit subdued at stages, but we wanted absolutely to win the game and we did it.”
Alexis Sanchez was also a surprise dissident as the Chilean stomped straight down the tunnel after being substituted in the second half.
“Was he happy? No,” Wenger said. “My job is to make decisions. There, again, to get 100 per cent happy is difficult.”