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'Underestimate Arsene at your peril', says David Dein

Over the last couple of seasons there have been a few grumblings among the Arsenal support about whether Arsene Wenger is really the man for the job at the Emirates Stadium. Not only have the Gunners gone five years without picking up a trophy (not that that would necessarily be a problem, most clubs go a a whole lot longer), they have blown opportunities to do so, and have serious problems that Wenger has failed to address, while complaining about other teams having money.

Now Arsenal are in a position where two of their best players want to leave but the club refuse to sell, and with no reinforcements coming in it looks like they could be in for a much tougher season than they've had before. However former vice-chairman David Dein, who helped bring the Frenchman to Highbury way back in 1996, says that you underestimate Wenger at you peril, and that it's foolish to dump him without having someone even better in the pipeline.

'People have to remember what he's done and achieved,' said Dein. 'It's easy in life to get rid of people but then what? Getting someone better is the trick.

How do you follow Arsene Wenger? That is not going to be an easy exercise. He has got a talented array of players and obviously he wants to improve and I know for a fact that he is looking to bring in two or three more players if he can.

'Arsene is very focused and determined - I see him regularly and he still has as much fire in his belly as he had when he started. He wants to win. I do believe in his ability... He will admit he has probably had the most difficult couple of years of his career - for two reasons. One is the fact the game is getting more competitive. There is money coming in and it is more intense.

'Secondly, he had to contend with the fact that he hasn't achieved what he would have hoped to achieve - albeit he has done remarkably well in the quality and style of play, but he and the fans want to win trophies. But you under-rate Arsene at your peril.'

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