If (when) Wenger breaks Sanchez, our season is in deep trouble

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Quite a way to open the post. Have I misinterpreted that tweet? Have Arsenal mistranslated the words? Or has Wenger truly lost his mind?

I’ve been over this before. Abou Diaby has a horrendous injury record. I think last time I wrote about him like this, it was a month ago and he was ‘close to being fit’, then he picked up an injury. Now he’s close to being fit again and Wenger is talking about a new deal. Come the end of the season, if he plays the full term without picking up an injury, he still won’t have proved anything.

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We behaved badly yesterday, fan performance must improve…

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jees

The Southampton game was a bit of a nervy one, but you sensed after their spanking at the weekend this might be a tough game for them. Morgan Schneiderlin wasn’t playing and he really is one of their dominant players. Our line up was pretty strong all considering. Martinez continued to deputise. Giroud sat on the bench. Our front three was Chambo, WELBZ and Sanchez. An exciting front three.

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2 years? No chance Arsene…

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Screen Shot 2014-12-03 at 09.31.39

Happy good morning to you!

Don’t listen.

No, you heard me, don’t listen.

What?

Oh sorry, I mean, don’t listen to Arsene Wenger saying he can win the title within two years. He can’t. There’s no chance. Not unless he has a complete overhaul of his approach. We all that’s not possible, so don’t get excited that Wenger’s next planned title assault is the year he packs it all in.

We’ve had a group of young exciting players coming through forever. We know the rules though. Once one of those guys becomes consistent enough to be perceived as world class, they go to a club with more ambition. To win TROPHIES.

I think it’s hard to see how the current crop we have can get to that level. I appreciate there are a lot of good players at the club. I think Chamberlain could be very special, Ramsey will be World Class when he pulls himself out of his confidence hole. Theo is constantly injured and he’s not really a world class talent. Gibbs is a long way off for me, he has poor fitness and he’s very fragile, not to mention consistently out of position. Jack Wilshere is a long way off being the player he needs to be, I pray to god we’re not seriously lining him up for a £150k a week deal. Welbeck, well, he’s good, I can see where he’s going as a player, but it’s hopeful to imagine he’ll be ripping it up like Thierry.

Wenger has just served us up a big slice of hope. The type of hope that’s been synonomous with the second half of his career. Because he’s done it once, a little bit of you thinks the wiley old fox can bring it back again. He can’t though. He really can’t. He’s too far gone. We’ll have to wait for the next manager to really crack on. We need a revolution now. It’s gone beyond an evolutionary change. I’d love it if Arsene were the man to make it happen for us, in the same way I’d love Oasis to come back and deliver and incredible goodbye album, but somethings aren’t to be… most people only have their time in the sun once. Wenger is one of those guys.

I mean, the worst thing about that line is there isn’t even any ambition in his fantasy… two years, really?

All this nonsense about loving stability. Hasn’t really landed us much over the last 5 years, has it? Mourinho had a solid year one plan where he drove out the dross (and some players that weren’t dross) and in season 2, he’s smashing it. Where’s Wenger’s similar plan?

As someone said to me the other day, ‘if the plan takes that long, chances are, there’s not a fucking plan’… amen, Sister Sledge.

Still, the good thing about Arsene, is he changes his mind, like me.

“After 13 or 14 games, you cannot say that the title race is over.”

That, after conceding the title to Chelsea a month ago! I don’t think he’s wrong. If we’ve learnt anything over the last 20 years, it’s the longer your winning run goes on… the harder the fall when it collapses. I don’t think the blues will remain invincible, but I think it’ll be very hard for Arsenal to catch them. I think with a different manager and a better approach, we’d be able to make more of a charge. In fact, we’ll make a charge because we have so many good players coming back, but I think the gap is sizeable for us to close it.

You never know though… imagine that, Arsene winning the league from here! That’d be an egg pie in the face moment to savour!

‘We have not started very well but we never had the squad together since the start of the season. It was a post-World Cup start. I think we have what is requested to do it’

I do wish he’d stop landing all our problems on the World Cup. Our players had the longest rest out of any club in Europe and we knew about this World Cup 2 years ago. We should have had a better plan in place. Chelsea aren’t suffering. What are they doing differently? That’s the trouble with Arsene, there’s always an excuse. What was the excuse last year? That the squad was a little bit small? All things that are under his control.

Another siren going off is the chat about Laurent.

“Koscielny could be a problem because his inflammation of the achilles is not completely gone,”

“He had two tendons which were bad. The left has gone completely and the right is still a little bit there so, if he has no reaction, he can cope with it. If he has a reaction, you have to be cautious.”

Basically, it sounds like the club don’t really know what to do with this injury. Apparently it’s quite complex. I don’t know what that means, but maybe it’s a bit like a back injury? My worry with Laurent is this… he’s one of the best centre backs in the world. Every season he gets linked to Bayern Munich. He’s not getting what he wants at Arsenal. He’s on pretty big money now, but he could be on mega money. He hasn’t looked interested… my fear is this is his last season with us. He’s at that perfect age where he can move and win a European Cup. If he stays, he’s not at that physical peak. He’s also been here a while… watch this space.

Tonight could be a proper experimental line up. We could see a very make shift defence and we’ll certainly see Southampton try and exploit our weak full backs. WBA were playing that game last time out, I’d imagine that Southampton will have a more effective plan than simply that. Koeman is another manager who has had time under Cruyff, so he’ll have a meticulous plan in place, it’s just down to Southampton and whether they can execute it. Here’s the thing though, if we’re on form, their plan won’t matter because we should have enough player wise to take them down.

Wenger says Southampton can challenge top 4… I’m not so sure. I think they’ll fall away. Their squad isn’t good enough. However, they do have some great talents. Amazed we weren’t sniffing around their head of recruitment, or their head of youth development. They’re the best in the business on both accounts at the moment, we’re fading in both areas, so it would have made business sense to move for them… but we didn’t.

Anyway, I’m excited about this tonight. If you’re going to the can, wrap up, it’s cold out!

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