Charlie Nicholas backs Arsenal fans' 'respectful' protest against Arsene Wenger

Arsene Wenger, Manager of Arsenal shouts instructions to Alexis Sanchez of Arsenal during the Barclays Premier League match between Arsenal and Chelsea
Image: It's time for Arsenal to move on from Arsene Wenger, says Charlie Nicholas

Charlie Nicholas believes it is time for Arsene Wenger to step aside but has called for 'respectful' protests on Saturday.

Supporters groups have arranged demonstrations at the Emirates during their clash with Norwich, calling for fans to display banners at the 12th and 78th minute to display their displeasure at the club's failure to win the Premier League in 12 years.

Nicholas is himself in agreement that it is time for Wenger to go, but feels that his 20-year reign warrants fans to show respect in expressing their views.

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Arsene Wenger knows his past successes mean Arsenal's fan expect trophies each season

He told Sky Sports: "I believe myself that it is time for Arsene to step aside and I never thought I'd say those words, but I want it done in a way that is done with humility and dignity, if such a thing is possible.

"However, I wouldn't have a problem if he stayed, but he has to realise mistakes have been made and solve those problems this summer.

Protesting has its place, but I just hope they do it with a big of dignity and it doesn't get angry.
Charlie Nicholas on Arsenal fan protests

"I said on Soccer Saturday last weekend that this will only grow and grow as the fans will be thinking these home games against Norwich and Aston Villa should be where they're securing the title.

"My opinion is similar to the majority of fans but I find it difficult to be as hard hitting as some of them, but then again they're paying the big money, more than anyone else in the league, and because of that their influence and opinion carries a greater weight than mine does from the studio.

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Many Arsenal fans stayed away from Emirates while others made they feelings known
Image: Fans protested against Arsene Wenger in their last home game

"Protesting has its place, just as the Liverpool fans did in the correct way with the price increases, but I just hope they do it with a bit of dignity and it doesn't get angry.

"I just don't see the need for the silly big banners, ridiculous songs and angry demands. It would be a big shame if there was trouble because of it."

Charlie predicts

Charlie predicts

Find out what Charlie is tipping up for Arsenal v Norwich here.

Some sections are also calling for majority owner Stan Kroenke to step aside, but Nicholas isn't convinced he is the right man to blame.

"Is this just about Wenger or is this about Kroenke as well because they feel he's holding money back?" he added.

Wenger in the spotlight

Wenger in the spotlight

Poor form and questionable decision-making has put Arsene Wenger in the spotlight at Arsenal.

"I think what they're suggesting is that Kroenke has been holding money back, which is obviously highlighted because he hasn't had a successful time.

"The frustrating part is that he doesn't say much and I'd love a strong personality running the club, but don't see that being the real problem.

Jermain Defoe of Sunderland (obscured) has a shot blocked by Per Mertesacker
Image: Arsenal's title hopes were killed off at Sunderland last Sunday

"They've had all this money as it's been spent on Mesut Ozil, Alexis Sanchez and Petr Cech but what Wenger's not been getting in is the right players as he's still missing a top centre-half and a centre-forward."

The Soccer Saturday pundit does, however, expect the players to evade the fans' wrath.

"I don't think the players will pay much attention because it's the manager and the owner that are taking the brunt of the abuse," Nicholas said.

"I think Norwich could be on receiving end of a backlash this weekend because this side are at their most dangerous when the pressure is off and they can play their football."

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