Arsene Wenger says nerves contributed to league leaders Arsenal‘s 1-0 defeat at arch-rivals Manchester United.
Ex-Gunners striker Robin van Persie’s header in the first half gave David Moyes’s side victory, and left the visitors still looking for their first league win at Old Trafford since 2006.
“We were just too nervous in the first half,” said the Arsenal manager.
“We haven’t won for a long time here now. Once again it is a tight game that has been decided on a set-piece.”
The match contained few clear-cut chances and Arsenal only managed two shots on target, although they did go close on a couple of occasions when Bacary Sagna’s pacy deliveries flashed past his team-mates.
“We rushed our game too much and lost too many balls. In the second half we were composed, had a real go and played our usual game,” Wenger said.
“We were very, very, very close a few times. The heart was in the game, the desire was in there, but maybe a bit too much in the first half. We are quite strong on defending set-pieces and I was surprised we were caught on the near post.
When asked if he considered replacing goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny after he suffered a head injury in the first half, Wenger added:
“I listen to the doctor and if he tells me a player has to come off, he comes off. No matter if we have seven men on the field, I do it. You only have one life, you play 60 games a year.”