Quick post today because I worked 16 hours yesterday. No reason to tell you that outside the internet syndrome of instant gratification I seek due to 10 years of being brutalised by webculture.
Tell me I worked hard. Please.
So what do we have today? Jezza Wilson of The Times dropped a piece that initially felt like, ‘we’re gonna sign a DOF to help Wenger’, but by the time you reached the end, you realised it was…
‘Arsenal might offer a name, but if Wenger says no, we won’t, but know the club had a thought’
The PR machine of Mark G is trying its best to polish the wet dog turd that’s leaked down the side of the couch, forgetting – like many in PR do – the internet exists. This is Wenger in 2013.
“I would not work with a director of football because they buy the players and when it does not work you are guilty for not using them well,”
“I am not against having people to help me buy, sell and negotiate because I cannot do it all. But I think the final decision always has to belong to the manager to decide who comes in and who goes out because he is responsible for the style of play and results.”
Managers buying the players, scouting the players, coaching the players, making sure the players are breast fed properly – is a bit of a dated approach. Not even recently dated, dated for about 15 years. Carlo A says that he never wants to be in charge of signing the players as he feels it takes away from the focus of the job. Most managers are not in charge of signing the star names. The DOF takes care of the staffing and makes sure the names being brought in fit the vision of the club.
What tends to happen when you let your past it manager hoover up names? They make mistakes. They don’t do their due diligence and you end up with too much power sitting with one brain. Fine if the brain is attuned, but we know Wenger’s isn’t these days.
Our manager signed Xhaka and clearly didn’t spend much time understanding his game. We landed a sophisticated regista, when the manager thought he’d landed a B2B bomber with passing skills that would put Kante to shame. You can’t deny me this, because he’s on record saying as much.
Also, because Wenger has been so in the weeds over the years, he’s not looking at the squad with a long-term vision in mind. He’s reactive when it comes to signing players. What was the point of Lucas Perez? How much thought went into that? What were we thinking with Callum Chambers when Toby Alderweirald was available? When Wenger was hating on Joel Campbell, why didn’t he see the MASSIVE opportunity to sign up Manolos and exchange out the wide man?
Transfers should be planned two to three years in advance. You should know that this summer, it’ll be time to move on Per Mertesacker. Next summer, maybe Kos will be creaking. You should have a plan for Giroud being your C-striker. We should have had a replacement in for Santi Cazorla. We should have been noting that a major weakness for us all season has been Coquelin in the middle of the park. We should have a short list of new left backs that fit the vision of how we want to play. We should have new right backs lined up and we should be planning for the potential exit of Bellerin who might want out if we’re out of the Champions League two years running.
We don’t plan like that, which is why we’re found out every summer. Wenger has a plan A that is often pretty basic, his plan B is pitiful, there is never a plan C. He’s not looking at the best young players in Europe anymore. Juventus and Dortmund are hoovering them up. He’s not raiding the Eastern European market where there’s a lot of value at the moment. He’s not attuned to South American superstar kids. He’s totally lost is way in the French league. Even the toddlers we struggle with.
Wenger should be desperate for a DOF, not to support him (or as The Times embarrassingly put it, ‘ease the burden’), but to help show him the way. There should be new coaching blood injected into the backroom team. We should be turfing out Tony Colbert, Gerry Peyton and Boro Priromac. We should be bulking up our analytics teams. We should rip out the scouting department and bring in someone to give it a new vision and a new chain of command so there’s more accountability for buying players.
There is so much that needs to be done, but you’re never going to make the changes you need while Wenger is here. Know this, he’ll never change.
Right, that’s me done.
P.S. Big thanks to Myles Palmer for his hat tip in Le Grove’s direction yesterday. One of the legendary writers on Arsenal. My favourite growing up, no doubt.
P.P.S Remember when all the muppets were ripping Le Grove for the RedZone and the ‘over training’ narrative I had for years. This is from Bournemouth.
“Jack has had a lot of overuse type injuries over the years. He’s had some traumatic ones as well, which every player can get, but he’s a player who is prone to break down if the load is too high.”
“Literally with Jack we would say, ‘this session he can do so many metres, that’s it, until we’ve built him up to a stage where he is able to cope with the load”
This is a prime example of what happens when you give Wenger the tools, but he doesn’t use them because he knows best. This is also why you should follow the narrative of Le Grove
*winky emoticon or something like that*