Analysis of the catalyst for change: How will new names impact performance?

by & filed under News Review.

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So the machinations of progress continue to power on. The club hired Per Mertesacker to manage the academy. The big German retiring from football to make some magic happen with the kids.

This is a sound move. Per is very smart, very well respected at the club and I’m pretty sure he has a deep knowledge about the game. He’s won league titles, he’s won World Cups and he’s played consistently in the Champions League. I think he’s also very good for the culture at club. He’s a natural leader and a good communicator.

Hard to see any downsides to an appointment like this. I love Thierry Henry, but can’t help but think the Frenchman will have to work very hard to be a great manager. Per has all the attributes needed already, he doesn’t need to work on his personality, he just needs to fuel himself with knowledge and rack up those coaching badges.

I do wonder how much control Wenger imposes on the managers in the lower teams. How much autonomy will the German have? How many of his own ideas will he be able to implement?

The club looks like it’s moving in the right direction, but I do disagree with the people messaging me stating that the catalyst for change is being enacted, thinking that somehow the structure of the club is changing.

We are adding bodies. Not removing them. When a new alpha lion takes over a pride, he doesn’t keep the cubs there and he doesn’t keep the previous leader of the pack in the back office.

He starts a fresh. He brings in a new Director of Lions, and he sorts out his backroom team accordingly.

Jokes aside, it’s difficult to call the current movement at Arsenal anything outside shuffling of the deck.

Darren Burgess comes in to oversee Shad Forsythe who is doing a great job already. Tony Colbert still remains. He’s Wenger’s go to. He’s grossly underqualified. But he’s still there. People can bleat on about how great Burgess is, but my question is this: What problem is he solving? If there is one, it’s minimal. Also worth noting he’s not here for basically the whole of preseason and he’s a shared resource with AUSTRAILIA. How many points did we lose to a lack of fitness last season? I don’t have an answer, but this sort of hire makes little sense considering how much progress we’ve made with injuries (with the context that Wenger still loves to overplay his stars).

Huss Fahmy is coming in to take care of the backend of contract negotiations. He’s an administrator that works off Wenger instructions. I really don’t see where the value is here, or why it’s a story. Dick Law remains.

Per Mertesacker takes over the Academy and fills a vacancy. This is his first job.

Jens Lehmann comes in as a first team coach. This is his first job.

Sal Bibbo isn’t a new signing.

I think these signings are positive. None are damaging. But be real with yourself here. These signings are either political, or they’re additive. They’re not trailblazing signings that are going to impact what happens on the pitch. None of these names impact the biggest problem we have at the club, Arsene Wenger’s power grip.

If anything, we are more dependent on him than ever.

What would I like to have seen?

Firstly, we should have hired a strong Director of Football. That person should have hired in January, and been allowed to conduct a thorough investigation into the club, and report back into the CEO with a plan of action.

From there, a list of positions that needed to be filled should have been drawn up but an external recruitment agency that specialises in that sort of thing.

Then a rigorous interview process should have taken place, the candidates should have presented their vision for taking their specific department forward and a decision should have been made by a group of stakeholders including the manager.

That is how a professional outfit operates.

Not going along with the whims of a failing manager.

The path to success under Wenger has landed us in 5th place and as a laughing stock of Europe. Our solve is give the architect the power to hire someone off a recco from a friend, and to entrench his position of power further. We’re topping up a broken vision, when we should be either hiring a new manager, or redirecting the path with someone who has implemented a successful vision elsewhere.

It is what it is. Fans have severe amnesia and a blindness to the past when it comes to our summers.

Lacazette is exciting. Bringing old players back is the right thing to do. Hunting down Thomas Lemar has us all whooping for more.

… but if the foundations are rotten. It doesn’t matter who you switch in and out. The house will eventually collapse.

That’s my two pennies.

The changes are not strong enough and the structure of power is the same.

Rinse and repeat. Same as ever.

Also, happy Pride!

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495 Responses to “Analysis of the catalyst for change: How will new names impact performance?”

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  1. China

    Bamford I like your general idea about ozil dropping into midfield because he could spray forward balls to our front 3 from deeper and I personally throw up a bit in my mouth seeing ozil as one of only two playing behind the striker (or out wide)

    But he already costs us goals with his defensive laziness from a n10 positions.

    He is probably directly responsible for us conceding 3-4 goals a season and indirectly for another 5 or more. The deeper he plays the higher I expect that number to go

    I always say this but people always count the goals he contributes to but don’t minus the goals he costs us!

  2. China

    Tbf with ozil deeper he probably wouldn’t physically be able to vanish which would mean his contribution would likely improve *a lot* – but like I said his lack of defensive work in a real cm position is gonna ship us 10+ goals a season

  3. R.S.P.C.Arsenal

    Red

    Your forever saying the club is shit, I agree
    If Sanchez wants to go better himself an earn more
    Best of luck to him…

    Clubs in free fall an there are only a few parachutes ..

    Sanchez
    Ox
    Theo nicking the only 3

  4. TitsMcGee

    Papers have Sanchez going to the Blues or City. It would make sense as it would explain why Wenger was so eager to break records for Lacazette.

    Lacazette as a replacement for Sanchez and I’d have to say that at best we are slightly weaker from that occurrence. Props for not leaving us bare I guess but it’d be nice if we tried to build a team properly for once.

  5. Wallace

    Ishola

    “The running past and beating of players is over-rated in the game generally. Nice to watch but over-rated.”

    completely disagree. so hard to beat a defender one on one these days that those who can are gold dust. it’s why Guardiola always has two dribblers – sometimes three – in his first eleven.

  6. Ishola70

    Wallace has taken the line out of context was isn’t surprising.

    Later on in the same post it was said that beating players one on one in the oppositions final third is not over-rated. It is over-rated lower down the field,

    Mahrez many times does not only do multiple dummies and step overs in the final third of the oppositions half but also deeper,

  7. Pierre

    Double think
    ” I like Lemar but he’s not good enough to replace Sanchez, he’s got a great left foot but I don’t think he has the same level of dribbling, vision or flair.”

    He also doesn’t have the same level as squandering possession as sanchez

  8. Bamford10

    China

    I hear you on Ozil contributing little to nothing defensively, but I think if you forced him to play deeper, as part of a central three, he would at least be an additional body clogging up lanes and space. I don’t pretend that he would suddenly become a ball-winner or tackler or anything like that, but he would at least be behind the ball and standing in passing channels rather than playing playing as he does now — a non-scoring second striker who watches our midfield defend when we don’t have the ball.

  9. China

    Bamford I entirely agree, however ozil’ trouble is less about ball winning and more that he can’t be arsed to track runners

    It’s like he’s only half a player when we need him to just stick with someone. He gets dropped every time and as soon as you drop your man in the center of your own half you’re in big trouble

  10. IvoryGoonz

    Agree with everything. Hope Wenger reads and understand. Every control freak knows that when the end is coming, you have to prepare legacy. That’s what he’s trying to do. But good control freaks who have already gone that way and experienced, know that the only way to truly pass on the torch, is to actually accept people from other point of views. And that raising true inspirational leaders means giving up control. Which Wenger didn’t prepare himself to do. My two cents of euros or 1.5 pennies. Hire a matrix reimprinting practician. Can recommend someone from London actually.
    Wenger needs to learn to let go.

  11. Wallace

    “Hire a matrix reimprinting practician.”

    no idea what that is, but sounds like something worth trying :)

  12. Emiratesstroller

    R.S.P.C

    Apart from money please explain to me why you consider that moving to Man
    City is such a great deal.

    They have won absolutely nothing in last two seasons and they finished just three points ahead of us last season.

    The fact is that only Chelsea have performed better than us in the last three or
    four seasons and even they had a poor season in 2015-6 and failed to qualify for Champions league.

    I agree with many posters on Le Grove who criticise the management and coaching staff at the club, but I do find it rather ridiculous when I read that virtually every club on the planet is better than us.

    Let’s be clear Arsenal is the only major club in Premier League who have maintained financial stability. Clubs like Man City, Chelsea and even Spurs,
    Liverpool and Man Utd have been in recent times on the verge of bankruptcy.

  13. TitsMcGee

    They have won absolutely nothing in last two seasons and they finished just three points ahead of us last season.”

    and how many EPL titles going back further than that ?

    Better manager – check.
    Desire to win – check
    More money – check

    It’s almost a no-brainer unless said player is afraid of competition.

  14. EN1AFC

    “He also doesn’t have the same level as squandering possession as sanchez Your Comment Here”

    So Pierre, you think we should sell him based on the fact he gives the ball away cheaply at times?

  15. TitsMcGee

    The fact is that only Chelsea have performed better than us in the last three or
    four seasons and even they had a poor season in 2015-6 and failed to qualify for Champions league.”

    Really?

    Jesus.

  16. Samesong

    I think this season coming up we have to go for it. No champions league put the kids in the europas.

    City are in transition but I would never rule them out.

  17. Samesong

    The fact is that only Chelsea have performed better than us in the last three or
    four seasons and even they had a poor season in 2015-6 and failed to qualify for Champions league.”

    Spurs ? Leicester?

  18. Joe

    Tits

    Leave it. There is too Much delusion on here.

    Liverpool has performed better.
    Tottenham have
    City have

    Fucking even Leicester with their one title

  19. Ishola70

    Emirates Arsenal haven’t won a league title in what in a few years time will be going on two decades.

    Done nothing of real in the Champions League for over a decade.

    These are the competitions that really matter to the top players.

    Not domestic FA Cups.

    This is why Sanchez looks like he wants out.

    Man City at least won two titles in the last six years.

    And are fans forgetting that Arsenal are no longer in the Champions League? That’s enough reason it itself for a top player to want to jump ship.

    Sanchez doesn’t care if Arsenal have been financially stable in comparison to Manchester City.

  20. Paulinho

    “Later on in the same post it was said that beating players one on one in the oppositions final third is not over-rated. It is over-rated lower down the field”

    Disagree. Iniesta used to dribble past pressing midfielders deep in midfield and as a result was able to run at theopposition’s back four with numbers in front of him, enabling him to pass it to an attacker or carry on running with the ball. Either way, he’s got the advantage by leaving the midfield in his wake. Finding that space between the opposition’s defence and attack is priceless – that’s when they go into panic mode – and dribbling past players from deep is one of the best ways to do it. With two banks of four it’s hard to get players higher up pitch to even get in the position of being able to take on the full back because you get doubled up by wide midfielder as well.

    Players that can take on players high up the pitch are a dime a dozen. Arshavin could do it, Gervinho could, even Walcott can do it. The players that can do it with players from deep with the opposition surrounding them from every angle are the special ones. IMO of course. A lot of poor dribblers who try to dribble from deep positions often get dispossessed the moment they make it clear that is what they are trying. How many times has Walcott tried it and ran straight into someone? Too many too count.

  21. Carts

    “Sports management guy who works with Walcott said the following on Twitter:

    “Kieran Gibbs, Mathieu Debuchy, carl jenkinson, Joel Campbell & Lucas Perez will not travel to Austraillia. All set to be sold.

    ”When asked his source, he said “a player but can’t say more than that”. Could be bogus, but his management company does work with Walcott.”

    Thank fuck.

    No reason why we couldn’t raise £30m in fees and save about £270k p/w in wages…that’s over £12m p/a .

    Looks like Walcott will survive the culling for another season. He’ll probably leave on a free, at this stage.

  22. Ishola70

    PaulinhoJuly 9, 2017 19:25:48
    “Disagree”.

    You have just listed there one of the great modern players.

    How many times do you see moves break down early and possession lost because a player thinks he is Iniesta? Plenty.

    Mahrez is not Iniesta.

    And I did say dribbling deep is generally over-rated. Not completely, universally.

    Our little Jack Lil’ Wilshere bless him is the perfect example of a player who wanted to do too much on the ball many times in the wrong areas.

  23. Paulinho

    Ishola – Agree about Mahrez. That’s why I don’t want him. He’s great when he can isolate full backs high up the pitch and stand them up, but it’s a different story with his back to the opposition and he’s got two or three trying to force him backwards.

    Wilshere was a genius at it when fully fit. The problem was when his pride led to him doing it with dodgy ankles, so he couldn’t execute and just got dispossessed in embarrassing fashion.

  24. Samesong

    You have just listed there one of the great modern players.

    Could add some of these players

    Modric
    Isco
    Coutinho
    Verrati
    Dybala
    Carzola

  25. Paulinho

    “How many times do you see moves break down early and possession lost because a player thinks he is Iniesta? ”

    Obviousy I meant when done well. Hleb used to do it but people denigrated his contribution because he used to give it someone else to score after he had effectively opened up the game and the opposition by himself.

  26. Ishola70

    The thing with Lil’ Jack even when he was fully fit is that he didn’t always have the vision and execution to put in a player in with a final pass from his own efforts of the dribble that led to the situation of that final pass being a possibility.

    His dribbles gfrom deep many times were wasted because of lack of execution at the end of them,

  27. Paulinho

    “His dribbles gfrom deep many times were wasted because of lack of execution at the end of them,”

    Yeah he was wasteful at times, but it doesn’t half make the opposition think twice about pressing when you burn them and leave the back four exposed. Next time to you play into midfield they’ve backed off and you’ve won a mental battle in some ways; made them change their plan.

    The one time Xhaka did something imaginative and daring when pressed – against City in the F.A semi final – Fernandinho got himself booked trying to cut out his wall pass.

  28. Carts

    Joe

    Not unreasonable to suggest that Perez & Gibbs would fetch £10m a piece…

    The remaining shrapnel would come from Debuchy, Jenkinson and JC – £3m a piece, maybe??

  29. Wallace

    Paulinho

    whatever you think of Welbeck as a player you agree when he starts in place of Giroud our midfield has a lot more room in which to play?

  30. Paulinho

    Wallace – Yep I agree. I think Welbeck is our best player at dropping deep and being able to run with the ball and also see what’s around him.

    Sanchez used to frustrate me because he’s a head down dribbler and it was only after had gone past every single player that he would look up. The great dribblers can constantly be aware of what’s around them, keep their head up, and terminate the dribble half-way through if someone was calling for it in a better position. Welbeck is great at that.

  31. Emiratesstroller

    When I read the constant garbage of RT and some others you would think that
    Arsenal never produce any results.

    So let me put a simple test to him and others.

    a] How many League Titles have Liverpool and Spurs won in last 20 years.
    b] How many trophies have Arsenal, Man Utd, Man City, Liverpool and Tottenham won in last 4 years?
    c] Which club has qualified the most times in Champions League over last 10
    years.

    There was a lot to criticise about the way the club has been run in recent times, but please be proportionate.

  32. Carts

    “Szczesny – 15m
    Debuchy – 6m
    Jenks – 5m
    Gibbs – 12m
    Walcott – 20m
    Lucas – 17m”

    £6m for Debuchy? You suffering from
    Heat stroke?

    £17m for Perez, we didn’t buy him from Argos 3 days ago..

    £12m for Gibbs? Watford said he was overpriced at £15m. Gibbs’ value is £10m. No more, no less!

  33. Carts

    Not sure why Juventus got rid of Neto, to be honest. I thought he was good at Fiorentina, I remember suggesting that we go in for him as he was available on a bossman.

    Juventus got e9m for him. Don’t see them paying anywhere near e19m for Wojiecech

  34. Cesc Appeal

    Debuchy we will have to give away, Perez we will get around £10 Million for I think considering he has not played much at all and actively wants to leave, Gibbs we will get £5-10 Million for due to his stupid wage demands, Jenkinson we will need to basically give away as well for the same reasons.

    Walcott, again, £20-25 Million player really, but because of the genius decision to put him on £140 000 a week we will need to offset his wage demands with any fee received.

    Thankfully, we do not need to raise funds, just clear out shit.

    We will basically need to give Wilshere away as well.

  35. Carts

    Cesc

    It’s quite ridiculous how we’ve got ourselves in this position. Socialist policy is laughable

  36. Cesc Appeal

    Carts

    Again, this is where a DoF coming in this summer would have been great, take our kick in the balls on the fees etc now but never let it happen again. Never allow a pile of deadwood to gather, never allow players to be put on wages way way above their worth, never again allow loyalty bribes in terms of wages to be used for young players who have yet to prove a thing.

    Surely even Kroenke could see the total lack of financial sense in the Wenger wage structure. It must go.

  37. Joe

    Emirates last 4 years comparison was blown out of the water so then changes the parameters to the last 20.

    At least Liverpool have challenged for the title in the last decade. As have Spurs. Leicester won it. Who cares about qualification for CL. We get embarrassed every year ES. I wouldn’t be bragging about it. Liverpool have won it in the last 20. We haven’t.

    Just like the fat kid at sports day. Happy to get his participation badge.

    Wenger-ized

    Oh I forgot. We led the league for most days that one year.

    We went undefeated from march to
    November one year

    There are some bollcoks you can throw out too

  38. Wallace

    a few months back Jim Lahey (I think) posted all the wages of the players at the big teams. Arsenal did not stand out as being unusually generous to the lesser players.

  39. Joe

    All I care about is we are on average double digits behind the league leaders for the last decade and have been embarrassed in the CL for years on years

    ES and his small club mentality. Thinking like a west brom fan.

    Not like
    We are in a relegation battle I guess. We should be elated

  40. Samesong

    Was does everyone make
    Of rooney to Everton?

    Good move for Everton he will rally the boys in the team. Score some goals also.

  41. Samesong

    Juventus are close to securing a deal to sign Arsenal goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny, according to the Daily Mirror.

    The Poland international caught the eye of the Serie A champion after an impressive loan spell at Roma last season.

  42. Redtruth

    Emiratesstroller is a special needs case.
    Castigates Wenger and the board throughout last season with a shopping list of woes and now all is rosy in the garden….lol

  43. Wallace

    Joe

    “Spurs almost have half our salary wage.”

    sure, but if you’re bringing that up you’ve also got to be fair and go the other way. we’re paying 20-30m less than the two Manc clubs. which is what, three 180-200k players?

  44. Samesong

    Arsenal’s away record against the top-6 in the Premier League since 2012/13: WDLLLLLLWLLDWLDLDLDDL Wins: 3 Goals: 26 Conceded: 47 Woeful.

  45. Carts

    Wallace

    As a ratio, we’re paying the stipulated amount required by FFP

    Again, the issue is how we’ve grouped the players and their salaries.

    Look at it this way, Cazorla earns £10k p/w more than Gibbs…

    If and when Ozil signs his new deal, he’ll be about £100k p/w better of me than the next highest earner…presumably that person would be Lacazette..

    Cesc, explains it perfectly in his post

  46. Alexanderhenry

    Emirates

    ‘Let’s be clear Arsenal is the only major club in Premier League who have maintained financial stability. Clubs like Man City, Chelsea and even Spurs,
    Liverpool and Man Utd have been in recent times on the verge of bankruptcy.’

    Well, arsenal have taken ‘financial stability’ to an extreme. Being prudent is one thing but stockpiling over £200 million in the bank is taking the piss.

  47. Carts

    Samesong

    Rooney back to Everton could work out to be a smart move by Everton.

    As it stands, their next spend is about is -£10m

  48. Samesong

    Rooney back to Everton could work out to be a smart move by Everton.

    Yes. Rooney shirt sales that old sentimental story. Scoring his first goal can see goodison fans going crazy. Never ever the same appeal as Henry when he came back that was magical big man tears stuff.

  49. R.S.P.C.Arsenal

    Stroller
    Sorry for late reply …

    My wish for Sanchez to go to city is purely my frustration with the club .
    Look the fella is a born winner .
    He don’t see that around him , he see potential ? Maybe …
    Look if Theo is with 140,000 and is not a starter …tells you all is wrong with the club .
    Wenger is frightened players he release will do what rvp did … become better players an win titles .

    Sanchez is a good great player but is he a trouble maker ,,,?

    More importantly he is South American
    Came from nothing wants to earn loads an win loads …just not at Arsenal

  50. Joe

    Clubs like Man City, Chelsea and even Spurs,
    Liverpool and Man Utd have been in recent times on the verge of bankruptcy.’

    Really?

    Please enlighten us… do tell us when and with proof please.

    Bankrupt Hahahaha.

  51. Carts

    The fuck has short sales got to do with the price of fish?

    Everton, at this moment, are looking for someone to galvanise their squad.

    They’ve assemble a squad that should finish a minimum of 6th; and still be in for a top 4 push come the end of April 2018.

    Essentially, Everton need to replace Lukaku’s goals and shore things up defensively!

  52. Joe

    Selling giroud to Everton should more of a worry than selling Sanchez to city as Everton are our rivals way more than city are (while wenger is here anyway)

    Everton could pip us to 5-6th with Giroud scoring the goal that leads them
    To Europa

  53. R.S.P.C.Arsenal

    Telegraph reporting that Matt zuck Facebook fella looking to buy spurs

    Now that’s a problem

  54. Samesong

    Essentially, Everton need to replace Lukaku’s goals and shore things up defensively!

    Giroud?????

  55. R.S.P.C.Arsenal

    If the club fails in the first four months then the only soloution is to sack wenger .

    It’s going to happen

  56. Samesong

    Everton under Koeman will likely play that pressing game I don’t know how Rooney and Giroud would fit into that model.

  57. Marko

    Clubs like Man City, Chelsea and even Spurs,
    Liverpool and Man Utd have been in recent times on the verge of bankruptcy

    Absolutely not true. Look stroller you’re right people do go to extremes sometimes when talking about the club as in we’re not completely shite but then on the other side of the argument there’s people who don’t acknowledge truly how bad certain things are and how steadily worse things have been getting. The fact is we’re not utter garbage sure but at the same time for a club supposedly in the top 7 most valuable clubs in the world we couldn’t be any further from being elite. We haven’t legitimately competed for a league title in 10-13 years and have bar one season where we got to the final and one season where United dumped us out in the semis we’ve been shocking for the most part in Europe.

  58. Emiratesstroller

    RT

    You are not only a ‘basket case’ who is not remotely an Arsenal supporter, but you toxic.

  59. Marko

    If the club fails in the first four months then the only soloution is to sack wenger .

    Agree but it’s not going to happen. Lacazette and possibly Lemar even if Sanchez leaves will be enough to save his arse for a while anyway

  60. Emiratesstroller

    I acknowledged that the club has not been managed well in the last decade, but that does not change the fact that Arsenal’s performance level in recent times is not worse than Man Utd or Man City who have spent significantly more than us in the transfer market.

    I find it disingenuous that there are so many critics of our finishing second behind Leicester City. May I remind those critics that we managed to finish ahead of all other competitors that season. Man Utd,Liverpool and Chelsea
    failed to qualify for CL!

    Moreover Leicester lost just 3 games that season in the League and Arsenal
    did the double.

    Everybody understands our shortcomings, but that is not confined just to our
    club.

  61. Emiratesstroller

    Marko

    All the clubs I listed have been close to bankruptcy in the last 50 years. Chelsea were 24 hours from Bankruptcy when Bates sold club to Abramovich. Liverpool have been close to bankruptcy very recently just before club was sold to Fenway. Man City were perennially on the brink until taken over by Abu Dhabi Consortium.

    Manchester United were worth peanuts when Edwards tried to sell club before Fergie became manager and Spurs were also in financial trouble on more
    than one occasion.Ask Alan Sugar.

  62. Marko

    MarkoAll the clubs I listed have been close to bankruptcy in the last 50 years

    You did say recent. I wouldn’t class City as underachieving to be honest because they’re still coming to terms with being an elite club these last few years and they won two league titles and are now trying to make the step up in Europe and United well they’ve underachieved for sure but they’re likely to sort themselves out eventually

  63. Emiratesstroller

    Marco

    Edwards tried to sell Man Utd to Michael Kinghton for £20 million in 1989. That
    is just 28 years ago.

    Chelsea was sold by Bates to Abramovich just over 10 years ago. As I said they
    were on point of bankruptcy.

    Man City were an underperforming club and were persistently in financial difficulty before sold to Abu Dhabi Consortium.

    Liverpool were on verge of bankruptcy just 6 years ago owing creditors £210
    million. The creditors went to High Court to force sale to Fenway.

    Spurs before Alan Sugar took over were in poor financial shape and as Sugar
    has said many times since they were a bad business.

  64. Pierre

    Joe
    “Please enlighten us… do tell us when and with proof please. Bankrupt Hahahaha”

    Well Joe, emirates has enlightened you….
    But Oh… Joe seems to have disappeared….

    He always goes missing when he makes a dick of himself.. eh Joe

  65. champagne charlie

    Pierre

    Because he hasn’t a Scooby about football, just being a loudmouth on a football blog. He’d be one of those mute fuckers among a group of fans in the pub, absolutely nothing to say on the subject without a laptop handy.

  66. Redtruth

    Emiratesstroller
    “May I remind those critics that we managed to finish ahead of all other competitors that season. Man Utd,Liverpool and Chelsea
    failed to qualify for CL!”

    We finished above those ‘competitors’ because they were ALL shite that season as proved by us finishing below those teams the season after .i.e..Last Season!…

  67. Cesc Appeal

    Gibbs, Jenkinson, Debuchy and Szczesny all stay home. They must be off, surely. Bramall has gone with the squad so it may be if we are sticking with three at the back that Monreal is seen as a LCB option and Kolasinac will be LWB with Bramall as an understudy.

    Unfortunately Walcott has gone which signals a stay for him. Not sure how long his contract runs for but we might be stuck with him until it is up.

  68. China

    Let’s please not degrade ourselves by celebrating the we got second place with a really low points tally in the once in a two decade season where literally zero of the big teams showed up trophy

    Where is your pride?

    We beat usain bolt and co in the Olympics because the dude fell over and banged his face, whilst we’re celebrating our silver medal with a 100m race time of 12 seconds

    Congratulations. Amazing.

    Who cares that we beat Leicester twice and they only lost 3 times all season. That happened because all the big teams were shite just as much as it happened because they were good

    Leicester got one of the lowest title winning points tallies for decades and were still double digits ahead of us

    How the fuck do you celebrate a season when we only got low 70s points tally?

    News flash if other big teams hadn’t been comatose that year then Leicester would’ve lost 6+ games even for all their good perofmrmances and would’ve likely not broken the low 70s points tally themselves

    Celebrating the second place when nobody turned up trophy deary me!

    I’m gonna celebrate that I’m the highest earning person in my family. I mean never mind that my parents are retired and all and my brothers are charity workers….

  69. reality check

    All the teams that finished behind Leicester changed their managers and changed the direction of the club.

    There were real consequences for the failure those clubs produced.

    What did Arsenal do.

    Nothing.

    The very next season when all those clubs finished ahead of Arsenal.

    What did Arsenal do?

    New contract for Wenger.

    You couldn’t make this shit up!

  70. Dissenter

    Jack Wilshere isn’t fit enough to travel with the team on tour. They told us to was jus a hair-line fracture 3 months. What kind of healthy 25 year old does not heal a hair-line fracture in 3 months?
    We need to just let him run his contract out and leave on a free.
    No premier league will ever pay a transfer fee for him. Bournemouth didn’t take the bait.

  71. Dissenter

    WTF is wrong with Westham?
    If you believe the tabloid gossip, they keep eyeing strikers from Arsenal for the 20 million range. Walcott has to go for at least 30-40 million, Giroud for at least 25 million.

  72. Joe

    Pierre and CC you muppets

    ES has made a fool
    Of himself twice today as he changes the parameters of his bullshit every time is he called out on it

    Kind of like you two idiots

    Charlie. Still waiting for griezmann to come in. Ha CC big talker last summer how we were going to be league contenders and we had the best TW of Anyone
    Ha shows what you know muppet.

    Pierre.ha. Is all I have to say about you
    That’s all your worth. Especially your football knowledge.

    cc. You’re the kind of guy that gets knocked out every time he goes to a pub for being a loudmouth know it all Cunt

  73. tonyd

    So we are off to Australia for pre season and it’s been reported Lacazette is going to play in Sydney. Would have been better if we had all new signings playing together.

    Lemar at least should have been on the plane

    Relatively easy opposition to play against, so not really a good acid test for us but a good revenue stream.

    Is it worth the jet lag when returning? Not so sure.

    It really does take one day for every hour’s time difference to fully recover, so in my view the jet lag is going to have its effect at a time when clear heads and fitness issues need to be sorted out.

    At the very least our pre season is going to be disjointed on several levels.

  74. tonyd

    Games against Chelsea and Bayern in China will be interesting to see where we are at that point. I can’t see that 2 new signings is going to make much difference against top CL and PL clubs.

    I’m not interested in top 4 finishes next season. We’ll only bomb out being humiliated again in the CL.

  75. qna

    I support the club’s endeavors to sell our players at the highest possible price. However, if we decide to sell a player and their are offers on the table then we should be selling them. Even if its below our valuation. We are to blame on this as we overpay them so the buying club has to factor that in. Lets assume the rumours are true that we have had concrete offers for Sanchez, Oxlaide, Giroud, Lucas, Gibbs and Schezeny. I would suggest that Sanchez and Oxlaide are the only one that is firmly part of our plans. However, these are the only two that want to leave. Ultimately if they don’t agree to re-sign then we should sell them.

    In that case, we should not enter the new season with any of these players on our list. We should add to that list players that we do not want and find a club willing to take them off our wage bill. Guys like Debuchy etc. It will be a complete failure (again) of our list management if any of these players are on our list.

    Next we have our targets. Lets assume positively (unlikely) that we can get Lemar (55m) and Mbappe (130m) and a CM, I will use Bakayoko (30m) because he has a named price and he is exactly what we need. Substitute him for somebody similar. Including Lacazette (55m) that is a total outlay of 270m. Something that seems completely impossible. But if that is what our list demands, is it possible to get there? Hopefully, we can get 80m for Sanchez, if you consider how competative the PL is then its not out of the question. We take say 10m each for Gibbs, Perez and Sczezny and 20m for Giroud, 30m for Oxlaide. We are still 110m short. Our transfer budget should be no less than 100m, which means we need to find 10m, if at all. We could easily make this up by selling a one or two average squad players – Elneny, Coquelin, Welbeck, Chambers, Gabriel etc. If we can only get 50m for Sanchez then we could get the additional 30m from Ozil or possibly Walcott. Alternatively we have Bellerin that we should sell if we can get the offer up to 50m, but not if its a low ball price. But we should take less if it means hitting our targets.

    Being forced to spend an exorbitant amount to get Mbappe, Lemar, Lacazette and a decent CM to partner Xhaka could be exactly what we need to be the catalyst to clear out some of the many players that have been holding us back for years.

  76. Emiratesstroller

    RT

    As usual you are ignorant.

    Since 1986 there have been 60 cases of Football Clubs going into legal administration. The list includes since 2000 four clubs which are currently in the EPL namely Bournemouth, Crystal Palace, Southampton and Leicester City.

    Many other clubs have been forced to sell their assets such as their football
    grounds because of inability to pay debts.

    Chelsea Football Club has a long history of insolvency and the club was sold
    to Bates for a Pound.

    Spurs were in serious financial difficulty in the 1980s and their situation was
    only resolved when the club was bought by Alan Sugar who paid off their debts.

    you need go back just six years ago and see the financial situation of Liverpool.
    The club was technically bankrupt with debts of £210 Million. The High Court
    was called in by creditors to force sale to Fenway.

    Manchester United were also in serious financial difficult when Edwards was
    prepared to sell them to Michael Knighton for just £20 million. From recollection the club was revived by influx of funds from Irish horse breeders.

    The name of a football club can continue to exist, but the operating company
    can be wound up and that has happened on many occasions.

    Clubs in EPL are less likely to go into liquidation, because of the money now
    available and better corporate supervision, but that does not mean that it cannot happen.

    Finally the most famous case of a football club going technically bust was Real
    Madrid. They had massive debts, which were only resolved by intervention
    from National and State Government plus the Spanish Banks.

  77. Rambo Ramsey

    Emiratesstroller, I wouldn’t bother with their ilk. These were the same morons who, when Arsenal were finishing top four but winning fuck all, used to denigrate it and say any trophy would be better.

    Now when Arsenal win three trophies in four seasons, they denigrate this too and hypocritically claim that despite the lack of any silverware the likes of Liverpool and fuckin Spuds have had better seasons.

    Their agenda is so transparent its embarrassing. You gotta wonder whether these whingers struggle for a smile or a happy thought in their daily lives.

  78. tonyd

    Black Hei
    All Arsenal have to do is to win trophies again including the CL.

    Wenger is hamstringing himself and the club financially by not even mounting a serious challenge on the EPL title.

    Success on the pitch = increased financial success from sponsors, merchandising and increasing its global brand; all of which have suffered significant non growth under Wenger for the stature of the club.

    Wenger’s continued failure will put considerable pressure on our club’s financial standing.

    With the current signings and losing Sanches on a free then not qualifying for the CL again along with keeping non regular playing players on ridiculously high salaries, as well as player running down their contracts will see Arsenals revenue streams dropping further to the making losses stage.

    The sole reason Wenger complains he doesn’t have the finances is simply that he hasn’t won the EPL for over a decade. FA cups do not make sponsors want to increase their spending.

  79. Carts

    Dissenter

    “They told us it was just a hair-line fracture 3 months. What kind of healthy 25 year old does not heal a hair-line fracture in 3 months?”

    We’ve been here before with Arsenal, and their penchant to tell fibs about player injuries. Wilshere recovery is like that of a geriatric. Sad times.

    “Walcott has to go for at least 30-40 million, Giroud for at least 25 million.”

    If anything, a case could be made for Giroud to be worth much more than Theo. There’s no way Theo is worth anywhere near £40m talk of £30m..

    Price inflation and British premium to one side, we’re talking about a player who’s underwhelmed throughout his career; hit his ceiling about 3 seasons ago; with next to no interest in him outside of West Ham.

    £20m should be about right for him.

  80. Wallace

    Walcott scored 19 goals from the wing last season despite barely playing for the last few months. he’s not going to dazzle you with his technique, but he’s got end product.

  81. Bamford10

    Jesus, are we back to this nonsense? When people were calling for “trophies,” they didn’t mean the FAC. They meant the PL or the CL. The FAC is a second-tier trophy. A nice day out, but it doesn’t mean that you’re a top team or that you’re achieving.

    And Emirates, calling winning the FAC twice winning “the double” is pretty lame. If this is a long-standing practice in England, fine, but my understanding is “the double” refers to what you accomplish in a single season, e.g., winning the league and the league cup or FAC. You are, IMO, trying to make our FACs sound more important or glamorous than they were.

    As for finishing 2nd behind Leicester, I would in fact have something positive to say about this if we ever actually challenged them for that title. But we didn’t. We were never in contention. So sure, we finished second, but we were never contenders, so there was no great drama involved.

    And I didn’t realize Rambo was a “positive”. According to him, we have been doing quite well over the past few years. Indeed, we won “the triple”!

    What a joke.

    We haven’t been good at all, and winning the FAC didn’t change that one iota.

  82. qna

    BH: I am afraid there is a current bubble in football; that bubble is gonna burst with the mid-east winding down their global cash-for-goodwill project. China is the next frontier for big cash but their G is putting a stop to outflows of cash. So better to be prudent than sorry.

    That is a simple explanation for what you dont understand. The influx of cash from the EPL is coming from matchday revenue + tv revenue + commercial revenue. Not the middle east or china. United, Liverpool, Arsenal and Spurs operate independently of mid-east and china money. Chelsea are now operating within this budget as well, City are also trying to do that. The money that has been given by Roman directly is a debt owed by Chelsea of around 1 billion sterling and he is treating that as an interest free loan. If for some reason that debt is called it could potentially bankrupt Chelsea and they would have to sell of their assets to pay it back. There is similar debt owed by Man City and a similar fate could await them. But unlikely that the owners would do this. If the owners were bankrupted for some reason then those clubs will be treated as individual assets and will be sold by liquidation. So Chelsea and City would likely be bought by a new owner whole at cents on the dollar, so as long as they are maintaining a balance of spending vs income they will be fine.

    We dont have any such debt to pay back. So we dont have to be “prudent” at all. . If we don’t have a debt then it really makes no difference what China or the middle east do. It will inflate market prices of our purchases which will just mean we get less bang for our buck. The value of our playing assets will drop, but that will be the same for all clubs.

    Its actually our money, the other EPL teams money and the income of the other major european clubs that is really driving up prices. What you have said has nothing to do with what we need to do with our finances. We just need to manage our books. If our income goes down, then our spending will naturally come down at that time.

  83. Bamford10

    “Walcott has to go for at least 30-40 million”

    I don’t know who said this, but who is going to pay 30m for a wing player who can’t dribble or for a CF who isn’t really a CF?

    You can’t just look at the valuations in the market and think that translates 1-to-1 to any given Arsenal player. You have to look at that player’s attributes.

    If we can get 22m for Walcott, we should sell him.

  84. qna

    “Walcott scored 19 goals from the wing last season despite barely playing for the last few months. he’s not going to dazzle you with his technique, but he’s got end product.”

    If he has got end product then he should have decent market value. If its only you that sees the value in him and no other club does then its probably in your imagination. If he does have decent value then we would be better off selling him and investing that in some new player like Lemar, even if we have to top that up with some additional money. What we need is quality. We have quantity and Walcott is part of that and has been for 10 years. We need players of a level higher than him. I would love to have an unlimited bucket of money to bring in these better players and keep Walcott on the bench. But we dont. So if we can sell him for 30m then we should and use that money and the 130k in wages that he takes up to get someone better.

  85. Wallace

    qna

    “If he has got end product then he should have decent market value. If its only you that sees the value in him and no other club does then its probably in your imagination.”

    the 19 goals, i imagined them?

  86. Carts

    “Walcott scored 19 goals from the wing last season despite barely playing for the last few months. he’s not going to dazzle you with his technique, but he’s got end product.”

    So…he is a £30m-£40m player then?

  87. Sid

    “Walcott scored 19 goals from the wing last season despite barely playing for the last few months. he’s not going to dazzle you with his technique, but he’s got end product.” //

    Why did he play barely? Was he injured?

  88. Bamford10

    Marko

    There’s no debate. Only a discussion of whether he is worth 30+m. Several of us say ‘no,’ and I would guess you are with us.

  89. Black Hei

    tonyD

    Lack of spending should not be an excuse for finishing 5th would be my response.
    If Wenger really wanted to go for his 4-2-3-1, he should have known that Xhaka is not a replacement for Carzola but needed to work under a different system.
    I am pretty convinced that if they could maintain their style, Arsenal would have challenged Chelsea for the title.
    But as usual they collapsed. Nothing to do with $$, IMO.

  90. Batistuta

    You can’t one minute say dropping out of the top4 would be good for Arsenal and then when it happens, still use the same stick to beat the club, you guys take this your “Arsenal is a bad club” narrative too extreme most times on here.

  91. Emiratesstroller

    Bamford 10

    The EPL Title is a realistic ambition for Arsenal. Frankly the Champions League Title is not.

    Indeed I would suggest that the Champions League is very difficult for any English Club to win, because of the intensity of EPL and the programming demanded by Sky and BT.

    Only 2 clubs since the second world war have dominated English Football. Those were Liverpool and Manchester United. Arsenal’s success in league has
    been periodic.

    For all their historic success Liverpool have not won a league title in 27 years.
    Manchester United have not come near to winning the title since Fergie retired despite all the money that the club has thrown at transfer market. Indeed before Fergie arrived they went 25 years before winning the title.

    The FA Cup may be considered irrelevant by some posters, but ALL the major
    clubs aspire to win it. How many times in last 20 years has it been won by a
    club outside the elite?

    I am not making any excuses for Arsenal’s lack of ambition over last 5 years.
    I will excuse the club its lack of success in first 7 years after Emirates was built.

    As Swiss Ramble pointed out many times in his reports the club did have the
    capacity to invest in the team despite the financial cost of stadium.

    Arsenal’s recent failings have been down to poor management and coaching
    and in some instances poor player recruitment.

    The major weakness of Wenger has been that he built a team, which could on
    occasions raise their game and win FA Cups, but lacked the durability to win
    the League.

    Whilst there are material changes being made it remains to be seen whether
    Wenger can and will reverse his downward spiral. He has two years at most to
    prove us wrong.

  92. Black Hei

    qna

    I am not really directing the article at Arsenal, but rather making a comment about football and finances in general.

    Vysyble is a pro group that sells market reports and it is their opinion that football is operating in a bubble, not mine.

    When bubble bursts, entities that happened to be highly leveraged or already in the red will be the first to struggle.

    That is currently not Arsenal’s position, which you have correctly pointed out.

    BUT, for many clubs in the EPL, that is so and it is not good nor healthy for the entire industry.

  93. Marko

    I will say this if Walcott played for Chelsea or United they’d likely be getting upwards of 30 million for him but at Arsenal not only would we be lucky to get 20 million for him but we’re much more likely to not even try to offload him. He’s been a 10 year project that’s never fully paid off. Never truly delivered or held down a starting spot consistently for club and country.

  94. Sid

    Bamford

    Because he isn’t very good at football. //

    Yeah that is it. So nobody is going to pay 30 m for him . We should be lucky to get 20m in case any club like west ham comes knocking. But another question is who is going to pay him 140k per week?

  95. Wallace

    carts

    “So…he is a £30m-£40m player then?”

    probably not, but I wouldn’t accept less than 25m

  96. Marko

    Funny thing is if Jordan Pickford is worth 30 million and Everton are apparently looking for 50 million for Barkley then yeah Walcott should probably go for around the 30 million mark at least. But this is Arsenal and our negotiating skills are questionable especially when selling

  97. Batistuta

    Reality it the Walcott shaped hole we’ve dug ourselves is that at the end of the day, we either take a hit and accept something like 15/20 million or just let him run out his contract

  98. Batistuta

    Knowing Arsenal, Walcott will probably go on loan with 1year left on his contract and the. leave for free

  99. Bamford10

    Emirates

    Good post, but with respect to this line — “[Wenger] built a team which could on
    occasions raise their game and win FA Cups but lacked the durability to win
    the League” — I would point out that not only could his teams not win the league, they couldn’t even contend for the league. Arsenal haven’t contended for the title in a decade. We have never even been close.

    Secondly I’d say the teams he has built have not only lacked durability, they’ve lacked athleticism, they’ve lacked discipline, they’ve lacked tactical sophistication, they’ve lacked organization and they’ve lacked ambition, confidence, desire.

  100. Bamford10

    Batistuta

    The only reason anyone ever said dropping out of top four would be good for Arsenal is because they believed Wenger would be replaced if we did. That was the “advantage” they saw in dropping out of top four.

  101. Bamford10

    I think if you marketed Walcott as a second CF to a team with plays with two Bfs, you could get 30m for him. As a wide player or as a lone CF, he isn’t worth more than 25m. IMO.

  102. Biggles

    The main problem I see with you logic Emiratesstroller is that you use our consistency in the top 4 over the long term and avoidance of near bankruptcy or finishing 7th or something as a mark of success. And it’s not comparable.

    We’ve finished ahead of Leicester in 847/848 seasons. Wonderfully consistent. Except they’ve won the league in the last couple of years and we haven’t. We’ve finished ahead of Manchester United for the last 4 years. Wonderfully consistent. Except they’ve won a European trophy in that time and we haven’t. We’ve won the league more recently than Liverpool… but they’ve won the Champions League more recently than we’ve won the league.

    We don’t capitalise on other clubs having a bad season. Chelsea have a terrible year… and we let Leicester leapfrog us. Manchester United have a bad year… and we let Liverpool leapfrog us. We stay static. Sure, it means we avoid bad things, but it also means we avoid good things too, as the teams ahead of us swap out from time to time.

  103. Emiratesstroller

    Bamford 10

    Let’s just say Arsenal over past 5 years has not been “fit for purpose” to win league title.

    Last season identified very well the shortcomings of Wenger. It took him until
    last 8 games of season to sort out our disastrous loss of form and then we went
    to an FA Cup Final where the team played very well and deserved to beat Chelsea.

  104. Marko

    Funny thing is yeah let’s sell Walcott it’s been 10 years and I think it’s universally accepted that most fans wouldn’t mind him going and replaced with someone better and hungrier but at the same time Oxlade Chamberlain in 6 years hasn’t even come close to the kind of numbers Theo has so what we have to wait another 4 years before we judge him properly? No. We have to get away from this whole skirting by average players attributing little culture that has existed for years at the club. If you don’t contribute then go no new contract. It’s never going to happen though. We’re even accumulating useless coaches. Bet we have 6 tea ladies on the payroll

  105. Carts

    Marko

    Pickford and Barkley aren’t 10 year projects, though.

    Both have higher ceilings than Walcott.

    Everton looking for £50m for Barkley is quite steep, but the precedent has been set thanks to the like of Stones and Sterling.

    If we got more than £25m for Walcott, we would’ve done well.

    I think the only reason we’ll get a bit more is cos Walcott won’t demand a move. Walcott will be due a sizeable loyalty bonus from us too

  106. Marko

    We stay static. Sure, it means we avoid bad things, but it also means we avoid good things too

    Should be the club motto since the stadium move

  107. Marko

    Last season identified very well the shortcomings of Wenger. It took him until
    last 8 games of season to sort out our disastrous loss of form and then we went
    to an FA Cup Final where the team played very well and deserved to beat Chelsea.

    And so? Here’s the thing with certain fans do we just focus on the last 8 games of the season and the FA Cup and forget the previous 40 odd games or do we judge the 40 games more so? I mean the reverting to the back 5 when playing against teams who were on their holidays isn’t a masterstroke especially considering that we were still conceding goals during that time. I seem to remember Spurs beat us comfortably with the back 5 in place. Granted the Chelsea game was a great performance but overall for the majority of last season we ranged from average to absolutely awful. It was a terrible season where we were expected to finally challenge for the league title

  108. Cesc Appeal

    Marko

    Could easily do more, could be worse though.

    That is the club’s motto since the Emirates move.

  109. Emiratesstroller

    Bamford 10

    Arsenal’s weaknesses are not down to lack of athleticism but to poor mental
    toughness and tactical awareness.

    In the first half of Wenger’s career Arsenal were a very difficult team to beat even when down to 10 men as was quite frequently the case with the likes of
    Vieira and Keown in team.

    When we played Barcelona in Champions League Final we went down to 10
    men when Lehmann was sent off, but we remained competitive until the end
    of game against a team which was possibly the best side in the last 50 years.

    When I watched Arsenal against Bayern in both games it highlighted all its
    deficiencies

  110. Batistuta

    Bamford

    Anyone who really thought Arsenal dropping out of the top 4 would lead to Wenger leaving were only deluding themselves. Those who really knew the reality of the the state of the club knew it wasn’t possible

  111. Jim Lahey

    “Walcott scored 19 goals from the wing last season despite barely playing for the last few months. he’s not going to dazzle you with his technique, but he’s got end product.”

    I put together some data on here a while back that showed Walcott to be every bit the stat padder people accuse him of being. Most of his goals come in times where goals don’t matter, when we are either winning a game comfortably or losing it. His goals translated into very few actual points for Arsenal this season, and I am sure if the same data was scrutinised for past seasons we would see the same results.

    Walcott puts the boot into teams when they are already down. The man is a fraud and has been fleecing Arsenal for the best part of a decade.

  112. Wallace

    Marko

    “Granted the Chelsea game was a great performance but overall for the majority of last season we ranged from average to absolutely awful.”

    it was our worst season in a long time, no doubt. but 75pts would indicate we weren’t quite as absolutely awful as you’re suggesting. just keep it sensible and I won’t argue this stuff.

  113. Sid

    but 75pts would indicate we weren’t quite as absolutely awful as you’re suggesting. //

    In a league which is becoming more competitive every passing year, such arguments make no sense. The league leaders ended up 18 points above us.

  114. TR7

    Walcott is shit… end of. 19 goals, big deal eh?? He pads up his stats with meaningless goals. Would happily sell him for £20M if somebody made an offer. Perez is not only a better footballer than him but also potentially a more productive player if given a chance and yet he’s being offloaded while Walnut continues to mint money at Arsenal.

  115. Cesc Appeal

    Jim

    I have always thought Walcott sums up the failings of the last ten years at Arsenal. Below standard player, turns up all too little, injury prone, inconsistent, no character, no spine, overpaid and overindulged.

    I’m sure he is a very nice person, but he really irritates me for those reasons, and the way he seems to be one of the mouthpieces of the club despite being a total irrelevance. Djourou style.

    Like when he was talking about Lacazette as a great signing, hold on then Walcott, so you are not a ST anymore then despite about five years of telling us you were?

  116. Rambo Ramsey

    ‘Jesus, are we back to this nonsense? When people were calling for “trophies,” they didn’t mean the FAC.’

    Revisionism at its finest. ‘Arsenal haven’t won a trophy for x years’ became one of the most used phrases in the footballing world.

  117. Emiratesstroller

    On a different topic I think that there is growing evidence which players will
    be leaving the club this summer.

    Sanchez, Mustafi, Chambers, Holding and Bellerin were all given time out from travelling to Australia, because of their activities in Confederation and U21 Cups.

    However, missing from squad were Szczesny, Jenkinson, Debuchy,Gibbs, Wilshire, Campbell, Akpom and Lucas. That is 8 players who are likely to be
    offloaded this summer.

    Apart from uncertainty with Sanchez I think that it is fairly clear that all the other players who travelled on plane or were excused for extended holidays
    are staying at club.

  118. Wallace

    Sid

    – “but 75pts would indicate we weren’t quite as absolutely awful as you’re suggesting.”

    “In a league which is becoming more competitive every passing year, such arguments make no sense.”

    ….?

  119. Marko

    it was our worst season in a long time, no doubt. but 75pts would indicate we weren’t quite as absolutely awful as you’re suggesting. just keep it sensible and I won’t argue this stuff.

    This shite again. Right but is our target every season to get around 70 points or compete for the title? How many points did we end up behind Chelsea? Did we spend 90 million last summer to only get around 70 points again? You take my meaning too literal. Fine we’re not completely shite we’re just masquerading as an elite club underachieving kind of shite. I mean do we have to get 40 points before fans like you realize how bad we’ve actually become

  120. TR7

    Emirates

    Wilshere won’t be sold. He’s not traveling to Australia cos he’s injured. I expect Lucas, Gibbs, Debuchy, Sczesney and Jenkinson to be sold/loaned out.

  121. Marko

    I have always thought Walcott sums up the failings of the last ten years at Arsenal. Below standard player, turns up all too little, injury prone, inconsistent, no character, no spine, overpaid and overindulged.

    Bet you’ll like the selfies he’s taking on theprivate plane to Australia. He looks a total dickhead. But hey if I was on 140,000 a week for doing fuck all I’d probably take a couple douchebag snaps as well

  122. Black Hei

    I will give Walcott a bit of slack.

    He was working out really fine in the early part of the season in the really domineering 4-2-3-1.

    So the midfield collapsed and Walcott couldn’t function because of it.

    But you can’t pin that blame on him. I mean the entire team was dysfunctional after that.