Wenger admits Van Persie reliance
Arsene Wenger has challenged his attacking players to prove that Arsenal are not over-reliant on captain Robin van Persie for goals.
Van Persie has been in scintillating form in 2011, scoring 38 goals in all competitions, and has earned comparisons with Barcelona's Lionel Messi and Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo.
With Van Persie almost single-handedly pulling the Gunners out of the mire they were in at the start of the season, they have been labelled a one-man team. And with Van Persie's contract due to expire in 2013, that is a worrying state of affairs for Wenger.
Now he has told the likes of Marouane Chamakh and Park Chu-Young to prove their worth as deputies to Van Persie.
"We are reliant on Robin, of course, because he scores many goals," said Wenger. "That's what you want from your strikers. We have cover for Robin because we have Chamakh and Park, who I think are quality but at the moment they are not getting the opportunities because Robin is in such fantastic form.
"It will be up to them to show they can take the relay [baton] when needed because the season is long and we play in many competitions, hopefully for a long time. Everybody will get a chance. I believe that players like Gervinho, [Theo] Walcott, [Andrei] Arshavin and [Aaron] Ramsey will score goals as well. But at the moment they are more in the providing zone. I am confident that in the near future, some others will score goals as well."