By 90Min
April 02, 2018

Arsenal continued their impressive home form this weekend, as they defeated Stoke City 3-0 on Sunday. The result, has not been the only talking point however, with patches of empty seats at the Emirates Stadium catching attention.


While the official statistics registered the number of fans at close to 60,000, Arsene Wenger blamed a trio of factors - including the  Easter holidays - for the sparsely populated sections of the stadium.

In his post-match press conference the Arsenal manager addressed the turnout at the Emirates with the Gunners boss further admitting that his side's sixth place in the Premier League table was a factor for the poor attendance figures on Sunday, as was Easter and the fact that the side have just returned from the international break.

Julian Finney/GettyImages

"It's just down to the fact that we're not fighting for the championship," he said, via the BBC. "People know that will not change now. They will be back on Thursday, don't worry.

"It's explainable by the fact that it's Easter. It's a family happening where people go away and it's a fact that we don't think about a lot in the Premier League. There's also the fact that we had a break."

Wenger insisted that the fans will be back for their important Europa League quarter-final first leg against CSKA Moscow on Thursday.

OLIVER GREENWOOD/GettyImages

Winning the Europa League is the only realistic way the Gunners can qualify for the Champions League next season. That fact, and some of the impressive results at the Emirates, convinced Wenger that the atmosphere will be much better on Thursday.

There were large gaps in the Emirates' stands, despite the attendance being given at 59,371 with Arsenal admitting that the figure is just the number of tickets that were sold or taken up. 

The Gunners needed a late double from Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, and a penalty from Alexandre Lacazette to secure the points agains the Potters.

Arsenal return to Premier League action on Sunday with another home game against relegation threatened Southampton, but first take on CSKA Moscow on Thursday in the Europa League.

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