Arsène Wenger says there is no chance he will walk away from Arsenal, effectively overruling the intervention of David Dein, his former vice-chairman, who warned that if Gunners' fans kept complaining and demanding more money be spent the manager could wash his hands of the club.
"There is no chance of that happening, I like to keep a sense of perspective," Wenger said after seeing his side lose 2-0 at home to Liverpool, suffering another player dismissed and one more injured, and hearing his players booed off at the end. "It is still the start of the season and we have had a couple of disappointing results, that's all. I don't feel under any more pressure than usual. We have an important week coming up and this is a time to stick together."
Wenger made the reasonable point that, even with eight players missing, Arsenal had put in a good performance against Liverpool, at least when they still had 11 men on the pitch.
He could have added that Samir Nasri, expected to miss the game and turn up in Manchester before the end of the transfer window, had surprised everyone by playing and playing well.
"Why not? He is an Arsenal player and he loves the club – I always said I would try to keep him. It may be that, in the end, we have to sell him, but until he goes he is still happy to play for us."
Wenger claimed to have no knowledge of reports emanating from France that talks with Manchester City had broken down, and would not be drawn on whether Nasri will be seen in an Arsenal shirt again.
If he plays in the Champions League qualifier against Udinese in midweek, Nasri will be cup-tied in Europe and be a less attractive buying proposition. But even though Wenger could undoubtedly use an extra body, he would not commit himself either way. "I have not decided about that yet," he said.
The game at the Emirates changed when Emmanuel Frimpong marked his full Premier League debut with a dismissal for two yellow cards and, simultaneously, Liverpool made a double substitution. Kenny Dalglish sent on Luis Suárez and Raul Meireles and saw them create the late goals.
Wenger had no problems with the dismissal. "He deserved a yellow card for the challenge," he said. "Frimpong was the victim of a lack of experience and his own enthusiasm. He didn't need to make that tackle."
A beaming Dalglish was delighted with the way the game went. "That's a hell of a pair of subs to be able to bring on," the Liverpool manager said, before owning up to a mistake on the opening day at Anfield against Sunderland.
"I went with Suárez last week because he was on such a high in training," he explained. "He had only just come back to us after spending the summer with Uruguay and he didn't seem tired, but maybe it was a wee bit romantic of me to put him straight into the team. He wanted to do well and everyone else wanted him to do well, but perhaps he needed a bit more rest, and that's why I was more careful with him this week.
"I might have made a mistake against Sunderland, but you could see the benefit of an extra week's training today. We are a stronger squad than we were last season and being able to bring on two substitutes of such quality proves it."