If Arsenal had lost their FA Cup semi-final match against Wigan yesterday the knives would have been out for Arsene Wenger. Throwing away the opportunity to reach the final and keep alive their hopes of winning a trophy for the first time in nine years would have been deemed unforgivable by many fans.
Although there has been discontent at Arsenal before, the criticism of Wenger if they had lost to a functional, yet unremarkable, Championship side would have surely represented a new low. Defeat could have been the straw that broke the camel’s back, forcing the board to end Wenger’s tenure at the end of the season.
As it was, the Gunners came from behind and scraped through on penalties to win the match and safeguard the Frenchman’s position at the club. However, considering so many people would have agreed with the decision to sack the manager if they had lost yesterday’s game, does a narrow victory against Wigan really prove the doubters wrong?