Sunderland boss Steve Bruce says Wenger critics are ‘ridiculous’

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SUNDERLAND boss Steve Bruce has branded criticism of Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger “ridiculous”.

Bruce takes his side to the Emirates Stadium on Sunday knowing exactly how the Frenchman feels after having to deal with the fall-out from the Black Cats’ own poor start to the new season.

UNDER PRESSURE ... Sunderland boss Steve Bruce.

UNDER PRESSURE ... Sunderland boss Steve Bruce.

However, he is aware that the focus on a manager who has spent much of his time with the Gunners at the business end of four competitions is magnified many more times.

Bruce said: “We are all open to criticism because of the job we are doing, but Arsene Wenger and what he has achieved, to criticise him is, for me, ridiculous.

“He has had a poor start for the first time in 20 years, is it? Certainly, he has qualified for UEFA (Cup) or the Champions League in the last 14 or 15 and produced great teams.

“As I have said many times when we have played Arsenal, I think he has been to the detriment of the young British manager because clubs have looked at the job Arsene Wenger has done.

“Let’s be fair, it was one of those when he walked in, (people said) ‘Arsene who?’.

“But certainly, most clubs have then thought, ‘Let’s go and get the new Arsene Wenger’, and there are not many of those around. He’s a terrific manager.

“It gives us all hope, I have to say, if we have got the audacity to question Arsene Wenger. What he has achieved there, it’s quite remarkable.”