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‘Wenger Out’ protest march cancelled after ‘fewer than 10 people’ turn up

Date Posted,April 5, 2017

Angry Arsenal fans were forced to cancel a march calling for Arsene Wenger to leave the club after fewer than 10 people turned up.

Protest group ‘NoNewContract’ had organised a march to take place 45 minutes before kick-off, beginning at Highbury and culminating in supporters missing the opening 13 minutes of the game against West Ham, signifying the the 13 seasons since Arsenal’s last Premier League title.

Each of the previous three home matches had seen protests, with some suggesting as many as 1,000 took part before the 2-2 draw with Manchester City.

But if the ‘Wenger Out’ movement thought they were gaining momentum, it appears they were wrong. While many fans did stay way for the opening stages of the 3-0 win over West Ham, fewer than 10 people turned up for the march.

After a slow start to the game, goals from Mesut Ozil, Theo Walcott and Olivier Giroud sealed a comfortable win at the Emirates, which ended with fans staying behind the chant the Wenger’s name.

“I’m happy when people are happy,” Wenger said after the game.

“And when you’re at the club for such a long time and you really care about people who care about the club, you know how sad they are when it doesn’t go well.

“So I can take care of myself because I am used to dealing with difficult periods but you want people who love the club to be happy, so I’m happy.”

While Wenger was able to put questions over his future to one side for the time being, a fifth successive league defeat heaped more pressure on Hammers boss Slaven Bilic, and Saturday’s fixture against 18th-placed Swansea has become a must-win.

Mesut Ozil celebrates his opener (Photo: David Price)

The Hammers now sit five points above the relegation zone and Bilic has insisted that his side must forget about their most recent defeat

“It is the key point for me to get that confidence back before Saturday,” Bilic said.

“We need one win and it will change everything for us. Three points at this stage of the season are massive.

“We are looking over our shoulders, of course, and there is no point in hiding it. It’s not being negative, it’s being realistic.

“I told the guys ‘okay, forget tonight, we have a few massive games in front of us’.”

Bilic also confirmed that the reason behind Michail Antonio’s half-time substitution was due to sickness he suffered hours before kick-off – but Bilic expects him to be fit for the weekend.

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