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Jan 18, 2013

Dein hits out at criticism of Wenger

David Dein has hit out at Arsenal fans for their criticism of manager Arsene Wenger, accusing them of having "short memories".

Former Arsenal vice-chairman Dein, the driving force behind the appointment of Wenger in 1996, believes supporters who are unhappy with the Frenchman are underestimating what he has done for the club.

Arsenal have not won silverware since 2005, and criticism of the manager has intensified amid a series of erratic performances this season.

Fans have also been unhappy with the departure of numerous key players in recent years, with striker Robin van Persie, who joined Manchester United in the summer, the latest to leave the Emirates Stadium.

But Dein says the increasing antagonism towards Wenger - who has led the club to 11 trophies in his time at the helm - is "very hurtful".

He told The Sun: "People have got short memories. They seem to forget what Arsene has achieved for the club.

"Arsenal are respected around the world, and much of that is because of Arsene, with the results and the players he has brought in and developed.

"People underestimate him. He has transformed the club. He has done a phenomenal job.

"I always used to call him the miracle-worker. He waved his magic wand, and he delivered. But it's getting tougher because the competition is getting stronger."

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