Patrick Vieira wants to know why more ex-Arsenal players aren't working at the club 2 years ago

Patrick Vieira wants to know why more ex-Arsenal players aren't working at the club

He's the captain who was at the centre of the club's most successful ever season.

But now Invincibles skipper Patrick Vieira has hit out at the club and Arsene Wenger for failing to ensure his team has enough physicality - and for not involving more ex-Arsenal players in the coaching set up.

Vieira was captain for the club's unbeaten season in 2003/04, and won the Premier League three times and the FA Cup four times during a nine-year spell at Highbury.

But now he says the Gunners lack the "physical presence" to be a great team.

He told the Telegraph: In this last five or six years, Arsenal went more with this type of technical players. The Invincibles had it all.

“Now when I watch Arsenal, yes they play good football, but I just have a feeling they are missing something – the physical presence, the personality.”

22 Aug 1999:  Roy Keane of Manchester United clashes with Patrick Vieira of Arsenal during the FA Carling Premiership match against Arsenal played at Highbury in London, England.  The match finished in a 2-1 win to Manchester United.   Mandatory Credit:Clive Brunskill /Allsport Vieira says the 2004 team had physical presence and personality: Here he is mixing it with Manchester United captain Roy Keane (Clive Brunskill /Allsport)

 

The Frenchman, who joined Manchester City's staff after he retired from playing and is now the coach of MLS side New York City - a part of the Manchester City group of clubs - laments the fact that few former Arsenal stars have a role at the club.

“I’m disappointed not to have ex-Arsenal players working at Arsenal,” he said.

“It is good for the young players who could see a Thierry Henry, a Ljungberg, a Sol Campbell or a Keown who have been at the club a good few years working in the academy, or working somewhere. I think they can do it a bit more.

LONDON - APRIL 24: Patrick Viera,Robert Pires,Thierry Henry and Ashley Cole of Arsenal celebrate after the second goal during the FA Barclaycard Premiership match between Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal at White Hart Lane on April 25, 2004 in London.  (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Patrick Viera;Robert Pires;Thierry Henry;Ashley Cole Patrick Vieira thinks players like Robert Pires and Thierry Henry should be involved with the club (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)

 

“Players want to do it but do not have the opportunity. I don’t understand it. The perfect example is Ajax. You see all the old players working for the club, on the field, in the office – the door is always open for them – but Arsenal don’t do it and I don’t know why,” he said.

Former defender Steve Bould is Arsene Wenger's assistant, but there are few other ex players on the staff.

Theirry Henry was hoping to coach the club's under 18s side, but his offer was rejected by Wenger.

Most recently, Mikel Arteta left the club to join Pep Guardiola's coaching staff at Manchester City.

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