Boardroom issues? Here’s why I’m sceptical… | Hazard, Jags and M’Villa on the way?

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Quite a bit to race through today, so first up, we’ll tackle the news story from the Arsenal Times about wage structure. Basically, the jist of the article is that the board are willing to stump up big transfer fees but they’re not willing to go to the next level with wages for players. Now some of the article makes a lot of sense. The idea that salaries should be restructured this summer is something that I alluded to last week. Firstly, I don’t for one minute believe that the strategy for doing that was Arsene Wenger’s idea. He believes in paying everyone similar wages. The idea for changing the way we pay players would have come from Gazidis.

Now, looking at what we’ve done so far this summer, you can see that happening. We’ve been trying our hardest to ship out the middle earning dross. Eboue, Denilson, Almunia, Squllaci and Nik Bendtner have hall been put on the list of players to go thus freeing up a fair whack of salary. From what I understand, Ryo, Alex OC and Joel Campbell have all come in on aspirational wage levels. They’ll have to play well for the big money. This leads us onto the big boy wages that apparently Wenger can’t sanction. Well, I’m a bit confused here. Firstly, it’s apparent to me that the reason Nasri and Cesc are leaving go beyond just money. Nasri has gone on the record saying he wants to win trophies, Cesc took a pay cut because he was stagnating.

So the idea that Wenger has been thwarted because of a pay ceiling feels like another nonsesne excuse to get him off the hook. The idea that we’ve been scouting Cahill, Jagielka and Samba for the best part of two years, even up until a week ago, and we don’t think they’re good enough is also a nonsense. Simple fact is, the squad is falling apart because of Wenger’s lack of ambition in the transfer market. Vieira, Thierry, Hleb, Adebayor to Nasri and Cesc all leaving for the same reasons.

He could have signed Parker, Cahill and Enrique for £25million. Our squad would have been vastly improved with those additions. Parker is a great player to have round the squad, he was the player of the year last year, he’d be a perfect replacement for Denilson. Enrique is a big powerful left back who has Premier League experience. He’s good on the ball and he has far superior distribution to Gibbs. He is a vast improvement on a left back that can’t see out more than 3 games in a row. Cahill is fast on the ground, he can play the ball out of defence, he’s the right age and John Terry reportedly told Chelsea that he’s good enough to play for them. He’s a horrible person, but lets not pretend he doesn’t know about defending. Also, not better than JD and Squillaci? Do me a favour…

None of the above players would have broken our pay ceiling, all of the above would have joined.

Talking of this supposed pay ceiling, is this the same ceiling that pays Wenger £140k a week? The same ceiling that paid Thierry Henry £10million in his final season? The ceiling that reportedly paid Cesc a £3million loyalty bonus last summer and was planning on giving him a £4million bonus this summer? We might have a basic pay ceiling, but there’s no evidence to suggest we don’t do workarounds.

I’ve heard two things, number 1 was that Mata didn’t come to us because of salary. Now would that be because we didn’t want to match his demands, or two, that if we gave a Spanish 21 year old that money, we’d have to give Jack and Ramsey similar money very soon? The second thing I heard and reported on this Saturday was that we’d look to bring in Eden Hazard before the window closed. Rumours from his agent say he’ll be advising him to stay. If I was Hazard, I’d be thinking… I’m young enough to make a name at Arsenal, if the worst happened, I’d develop as a player and I could move again. It’s a no brainer to come to us.

Anyway, simple fact of the Mata is that I don’t believe it’s wages stopping Wenger. I have no idea what the issue has been, but it’s something we’ve watched time and time again. The team is on its knees and it doesn’t need to be. Everyone at the club is flat and the only man responsible for this is Arsene Wenger. He needs to pull his finger our and fulfill in the biggest 9 days of his career.

He can still turn it around. The biggest worry is this Wednesday. We’ve got the good news that Jack is back in contention, Rosicky should be around and Alex Song, Gervinho and Frimpong can all make the trip. I’m still very worried about the game though. The Italians walked through us on numerous occasions the other night. They’ll take great joy in watching Liverpool take us apart at the weekend. We weren’t great against the Scousers. We created virtually zero. Ramsey is our chief creator and that’s not really his natural position. It’ll be interesting to see if Nasri is on the plane over there.

One thing I refuse to believe is that Champions league dictates our policy. If we don’t make it, Nasri is our Champions league revenue for the year, that still leaves us £50mill to spend.

If Wenger is going on this rumoured massive spree (Mirror) it shows the money was there from the start. If he signs Hazard, M’Villa and Jagielka, those are 3 players that were there before the season started and three players that earn well below a £100k a week. Why weren’t they purchased in June?

Wenger has 9 days to make a difference… If he doesn’t, two things will happen, one, I doubt he’ll last the season. Gazidis said Wenger is ultimately accountable to the fans, if this goes wrong, expect a massive showing of dissent at the Swansea game, especially if the United and Udinese results aren’t favourable. Problem two will be that our other players, Theo, Song and Robin won’t re-sign and we’ll have to sell them next summer. Now, I’m not fussed about two of those 3, but their transfers would be symbolic. Two players we’ve suffered with for years leaving to give their prime to someone else… again.

It’s up to Wenger. He controls the future by making sure the present is well equipped.

Armed with cash and intent, he’s one of the best.

Come on Wenger… prove us all wrong.

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991 Responses to “Boardroom issues? Here’s why I’m sceptical… | Hazard, Jags and M’Villa on the way?”

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  1. Rhyle

    Christoph Waltz is AMAZING in IB…no word of a lie.

    3 performances to top it? Brad Pitt in Fight Club, De Niro in Godfather Part II and Sam Rockwell in Confessions of a Dangerous Mind.

    In the same league would be Jeff Bridges as the Dude, George Clooney in O Brother and Bill Murray in The Life Aquatic.

    I could go on…being now soused…

  2. zeus

    Today is almost history so that leaves 9 days till we don’t buy anyone else in this current transfer window. T-9.

    On movies, how about the worst films ever made…..

  3. WengersSweeties

    I should make time Rhyle…

    zeus, there’s so many these days. It seems to be more about effects than good stories.

  4. Rhyle

    Worst film? A film called Full Frontal, starring an all-star cast but mainly David Duchovny. Look it up on imdb but whatever you do don’t rent it.

  5. Radio Raheem

    Don’t do it WengersSweeties just so you don’t get disappointed. Let it fester in your imagination, it is more enjoyable as an enigma…it always is. It’s a bit like sex – it feels good but it’s never as great as you imagined it.

    Okay I’ll take my tablets now. Buenos noches

  6. zeus

    Worst films, surely ‘The Room’ is near the top of that list. A sample….(Its supposed to be a hard hitting drama)

  7. WengersSweeties

    Rhyle says:
    August 22, 2011 at 23:39
    Howard Webb is the ref for Sunday.


    Great, as if we thought our luck couldn’t get any worse.

  8. Pat

    After having an absolute shocker this past weekend, Webb gets appointed the United-Arsenal game when, in fact, he should be demoted.

    Fucking ridiculous. Graham Poll said he should have sent 4 players off but he had a good game? No wonder England is so fucking shit at football, when no one knows the rules. Even when they do, they still promote the violent nature of the game.

  9. TonyS

    Ha ha……..I just meant “Enter The Void” is an art house film on the very cutting edge of cinema. Its unlikely to be enjoyed/appreciated by the typical “man on the street” 🙂

  10. Othello

    Damn! Man U goals were really cool and simple, especially the second one…

    looks like they ‘re gonna be really good this year and win big…

  11. incesc

    but apparently he turned up pissed to training and punched barmby.

    and he has bought a shitty pub where i used to drink when i was 16.


    buy him wenger!!

  12. incesc

    so we are talking to zarate and nasris transfer is being further delayed by him being in the udinese squad.

    thinks happen very slowly at arse these days

  13. Pat

    Think most our targets want guaranteed CL football. I’d be a happy man if Marvin/Hazard, M’Vila, and Cahill/Samba were signed.

  14. Moray

    Graham echoed that sentiment. “They need another three in the side,” he said. “They have big signs at the club saying, ‘Arsène knows’. Well I hope he does. Please get the cheque book out Arsène.”

  15. Pier

    If Wenger plays nasri on Wednesday that will be a direct challenge and fuck you to the board, as it would scupper the potential transfer of nasri to a CL club.
    If instead nasri doesn’t play, or has an oh so common injury or illness it would mean wenger has bowed his head and accepted orders from above.
    Interesting times, non? Changes to the hierarchy of our club look inevitable.

  16. abucci

    its a double edged sword

    if we lose on wednesday, we’ll be out of the champions league, be forced to buy, but no one will want to come

    if we win, wenger will come out and say this is our strongest sam ever and nobody will be signed.

    our best hope is uefa institutes a replay in the event of a tie by wednesday and wenger realises to win he needs to buy better players.

    i’m hoping for an upset on sunday – 1-0 courtesy of vermalen

  17. incesc

    i think nasri is a gonna mate

    its fairly obvious, they’re just sorting out details or whatever,

    and wenger now has one less day to replace him

  18. Ethan_gunner

    yes another season of selling players like glichy – cesc , jet and recruit 3 19 year olds and another african player who can get a red card in his 1st game ..


  19. The Arsenal Maverick


    but how do they know that Nasri ain’t in the squad? It hasn’t been announced yet has it?

  20. The Arsenal Maverick

    and recruit 3 19 year olds and another african player who can get a red card in his 1st game ..



    What has the fact Frimpong is African got to do with it?

  21. Ethan_gunner

    mav ,
    didnt you read it ?

    and you should know our team by now …
    he wont let nasri leave on a free , so its pretty obvious knowing arsenals past that we will in all probability sell him …

    its amazing that he didnt throw the captains arm band into it to make him stay a extra season or 2 …

    maybe wenger already tried it on him …

  22. Ethan_gunner

    no , just has this scary familiarity too it … feels almost like the year we got ade – diaby denison started playing for us .. etc …

    feels like another transfer window bargain buy to me …..

    frimpong was a good player in the reserves , but aint seen enough of him to gauge it , this season ….

    but knowing that players like nasri and cesc took a couple of years to be stars i wouldnt expect much from him … this season …..

    and even if he is as talented as jack , wenger will give him a small roll this season . its all about NOW players ..for me ….

    we know how FUTURE players work at arsenal ..

    and im sure we dont need more of em ….

  23. Ethan_gunner

    this club cares about cash flow – c.l and the lesser cups in that order . its focused around money , always has been …
    and. its the collective of wenger, the board who made it all possible.
    im sure if wenger was opposed to the boards way of doing things
    he would of F###### off along time ago ..

    wenger remains in charge as his focus every year is C.L money
    ,its no co-incidence that we have appeared more and done better than most over wengers reign in the C.L than any other club
    ( appearances i mean )

    we do remain competitive as ever !!!
    , but cant get across the line when it counts the most ..
    you need more seasoned players for that ……

    you need the experience of top shelf players , a team full of em’ , not 2 or 3 stars anymore , the chavs – manc’sx2 , and liverpool (less successfully) spend money on NOW players … 11 on the pitch ..

    thats why we lost cesc and nasri FFS .. because they are NOW players .. plucked from us with ease , i might add .

    and what do we replace them with ? ‘tomorrow’ at best players ..

    and so the cycle continues .

    dont expect much from this season …….

    last season we were better equipped .

    it dont bode well , i can smell it .

  24. Moray

    Hi ethan. Long time no see.

    If Nasri goes, then who are our “marquee” players? VP10 for sure, but he is injured for half the time. Theo? Theo is hugely overrated because of being English and on the front cover of computer games. Vermaelen? Hardly. Sagna? No. Willshire is too young, and Ramsay may not make it in the end.

    This is a big problem. We don’t have an exciting or aspirational team any more. How many young kids look at this team and dream of being a Diaby or a Chamakh? From a purely footballing persepctive, I prefer to watch Man City than Arsenal at the moment.

  25. Ethan_gunner

    hey moray….

    yes the bottom of the barrel..again ..
    it feels like another rebuild year …

    theo definitely did better last season , as did song ..
    and your right jack is still too young , but capable i think if given
    the role … it is a calculated gamble , but jack is talented enough ..
    but his small frame wouldn’t make him automatic pick i think just yet .

    plus you give man shitty glichy and nasri , what does that say about us ???

    selling club ….

    hmmmm …

    and you pay 16 mil for nasri and sell him for 20 ?

    wenger needs to ensure these kids are in it for the long haul .
    we carried nasri a season , whilst waiting for him to come up to speed .
    just when the kid starts earning his keep he F###’s off , like so many others these past few years ..

    its some F##### up trend , that we cant break as a club …
    the magic round about of cash 🙂

    the problem is the board see a different LEADER BOARD
    than us , they look at the financial side of things 1st ,
    and sure we extort money from our fans better than anyone else !

    thats all this Reign will be remembered for $$! in the end ,
    not the 1st 5 years ,

    wenger 2nd half ..

  26. Moray

    right. We do seem to get ourselves into a state where players only being to play well for us shortly before their contract runs out. Though this may well be a team motivation issue, rather than “bad luck” (bad luck is so often the refuge of an AKB, but it is a truism that you make your own luck). It happened with Edu, Flamini and now Nasri.

    More worrying is the fact that players are no longer leaving because they are not getting regular games (Edu) or for more money (Flamini), but because the club lacks ambition (Nasri, Clichy and Cesc). At most other clubs, it would be said that the manager has “lost the dressing room”.

    Still, perhaps there is a crash on its way in football. When the banks go, then surely they will take the clubs with them.

  27. Ethan_gunner

    i thinks it more of a natural progression ..
    people step up when we sell our current stars …

    and the team is in an ever state of rebuilding …..

    TH14 moves on and ade sort of filled the role (ha )
    pv 04 moves on and fab takes over ..
    now hes gone , it will be someone like jack who stands up ..
    then 2 seasons later jack goes to the chav’s

    you get the idea …

    all the time never gaining any ground ….

    its funny looking at the season review , nasri did most of the interviews , like arsene was grooming him for the media ..and better things to follow …
    and noticeable was cesc’s lack of interviews 🙂

    also good point … wenger’s “lost the dressing room”.

    it sure looks like it ….

  28. Ethan_gunner


    More worrying is the fact that players are no longer leaving because they are not getting regular games (Edu) or for more money (Flamini), but because the club lacks ambition (Nasri, Clichy and Cesc).
    yes, this is now surfacing….. as wengers PLANS , aren’t working …

    6 years doesn’t lie ….

    plus too many young kids being asked to step up ..
    before their time …

    and that creates a weakness in the squad , which frustrates the few players we have with ambition …


    and losing nasri after last season will leave a big hole !!!!
    especially when you got cesc and glichy gone also …

  29. Moray

    Ethan, and this is precisely where the development philosophy that you outlined fails: Cesc learnt for a shile under Vieira and Gilberto, both WC winners. The idea was for Wilshire and Ramsay to learn under Cesc (WC winner) and Nasri, before eventually taking over their roles and allowing the club to sell them both for a profit…however, the experienced players are not having it any more. Wenger’s failure to strengthen in key areas and the flood of cash into the League has meant us falling behind the top teams. And his inability to instill discipline in the team, matched with his proclivity to hand the armband out as a bribe, mean that the kids are ruling the roost and we are rewarding failure and mediocrity.

    Actually, the model WAS working, but somebody at Arsenal got greedy and decided to cut corners. The end result we see today – the risk hasn’t paid off and I fear we are destined for a few more years of rebuilding before we will get back in the top 4: it is obvious we are currently heading out of the elite caucus of clubs. It is all very good to be recognised for our sustainable model, but I think Wenger expected more to happen with the fair play rules and maybe as a result expected to pick up players on the cheap.He was sadly mistaken and it is going to cost us big time.

    Actually a European super league might be the one thing that saves us, if it comes…

  30. Moray

    and on Clichy: I think nobidy honestly was mourning Clichy leaving the club…until we realised Wenger had no plans to replace him with experience.

  31. dennisdamenace

    If only those cunts running the club, AND i include Wenger in that, would show half as much drive and ambition in creating a top class team as they do in sucking every pound out of the club, we’d be World fucking beaters…….

  32. dennisdamenace

    Yandi – Some fucking 14 year old Ethiopian/German…….

    I’m finding Wenger’s continued reluctance to address our obvious and ongoing issues whilst at the same time persisting in his questionable (at the very least) chasing down of almost every teenager in World football, not only distasteful, but also increasingly uncomfortable to excuse as a decent and moral way to do business.

  33. Moray

    no excuses, but DDM has found some morality at last…

    I think he found it down the back of a sofa or something

  34. dennisdamenace

    Fucker never has to deliver, because he sells us a future that never actually arrives………fucking genius!

  35. dennisdamenace

    Who’s making excuses?

    Any cunt that comes on here and cuts our £7m a year man any slack whatsoever.

  36. rob green

    “I want to come to England to win trophies – and that’s why I accepted Chelsea’s offer,” Mata told The Sun.

    “It was also a question of sporting achievement, not money. Arsenal and Tottenham were both interested in me but they did not compare with the Blues.

    “I want the Premier League title and this is possible at Chelsea.

    “Fernando Torres helped influence my decision but speaking directly with Villas-Boas was the decisive factor.

    “He explained how his style will be based on 4-3-3 and how important I will be to his plans.

    “Frank Lampard is a monster of a footballer to play alongside and the prospect of that is incredible.”


    if i was a player i wouldnt come to arsenal!! if i played for arsenal i would want out!! we are a joke!

  37. Moray

    It could all have been so different:

    “I want to come to England to get away with doing very little, winning nothing and being paid royally for it– and that’s why I accepted Arsenal’s offer,” Mata told The Sun.

    “Frank Lampard is a monster of a footballer to play alongside and he can eat my packed lunch any time. Oh, and John Terry is welcome to pound my girlfriend like a mallard duck.”

    “Marouane Chamakh and Denilson helped influence my decision but speaking directly with Pat Rice was the decisive factor.What a cup of tea that man makes! It’s better than sex!”

  38. dennisdamenace

    DS – He gladly accepts £6-7m a year from them.

    If he’s being made the scapegoat, he should grow a pair and tell it how it is, instead he gladly accepts the money, therefore he’s complicate in all this fucking nonsense.

  39. Goon from BD

    Three clubs want a player. He wants to know which one of them want him the most. How does he understand that??? by sitting down with his agent and evaluates the three offers then finds out a club who offers him better wages. WAGE STRUCTURE MY A$$

  40. Moray

    no, we pulled out of the deal at the last minute. I’m pretty sure it’s our fault.

    No blame is on Matta. By all accounts, it is good business by Chelski. They do what many clubs do now: wait for us to identify a player ansd then step in with an open chequebook while we are dithering and trying to buy him for a fiver and a reacharound.

    If anything, it’s our own stupid fault for getting excited about a player that we would never have bought in a million years with his price tag. About 12m seems to be our limit.

  41. Doublegooner

    Morning all miserable Gooners.

    If you’re not miserable you’re a deluded Arsene FC fan & can FUCK OFF.

    The enormity of the next 2 games will define our future.

    Mata is right.

    Ian Wright is right.

  42. Moray

    DS, it is a bit more complicated than that: had we actually been winning in some of those games where refereeing mistakes were made, we would probably have bottled it anyway.

  43. zee

    Six months ago today we scrambled to a 1-0 win against Stoke. All comps since then:
    P17 W3 D7 L7

    Half a year of pretty solid shitness.

  44. Goon from BD

    Obviously its our fault. We are a “self sustainable” club you know…….

    LOL We are getting Howard for the Manure game. EXcEllenT

  45. zee

    apparently the guardian changed its story on nasri last night. |First edition, he’s in the squad, then changed to he won’t be on the plane from luton today. If he’s not considered for a game of this importance, it surely means the club will no make sure he’s sold.

  46. dennisdamenace

    Anyone want a 50p bet that we get screwed over by a fucked up refereeing decision on Sunday. That will obviously enable Wenger to hide behind yet another excuse, regardless of how out-classed we may have been……..

  47. Moray

    zee, it sounds like the Board want rid of him but are loath to pay to do it. They were stupid enough to offer that long contract extension recently. Or maybe they fear the backlash should they do it, and are therefore allowing him to hang himself by the very bootstraps of the shit players he signed.

  48. zee

    that story in the star as well – that wenger met rvp and told him he’s happy with the squad – you wouldn’t believe it if it was anyone else. But it sounds perfectly plausible. rvp must have been offended.

  49. Moray

    ddm, or else we get another booking or a key injury.

    all these things are key “excuses” in the Wenger armoury.

  50. Goon from BD

    Zee- “moray that sounds highly possible, as no one on the board has the leadership or balls to make a decision of that size.”

    ^^^This is why I want people to seriously look at the board and forget the manager and players atm. We all seem to discuss and argue this and that then to find the main reason but don’t give importance to it. Why not just try and treat the problem once for all???

  51. incesc

    would not surprise me one bit if doesnt strengthen

    happens evey summer…

    why should this year be different.

    bet jack is back too early and goes of injured tomorrow.

  52. charliegeorge


    Thanks for the link. What an arse wipe! When finally we don’t get to qualify for CL football next year (or perhaps sooner), no longer will he be able to trot out the well-worn excuse of “we have never failed to qualify for the CL under my tenure” (or words to that effect).

    In fact, we might even get relegated for the first time in the club’s history? And what will he say then?

  53. Miki Dora

    So I’ve searched for this handbrake. No sign anywhere.

    Perhaps the car is just so utterly shit it doesn’t even work?

  54. charliegeorge


    I think we might. All the indications are there. If Udinese beat us, the morale will be at an all-time low. We will not recover. If VP and Walcott (no great loss, actually) succumb to injury as normal, we’ll be playing the likes of Freeman and Lansbury. The jig will be up. He will have been exposed for the fraud he’s become.