Almunia, Chamakh and Park-to-go | Vertonghen, Podolski and M’Vila to join

by & filed under News Review.


The newspapers are bustling with tales of excitement this morning. I’m not going there first though. Instead, I’ll give you the bad news, then ease you into a crescendo of meaty transfer goodness towards the end of the post.

Mario Gotze has sadly signed a contract extension with Dortmund. This shouldn’t come as a surprise for a many reasons. Firstly, his advisers said last year he’d committed to the club for a further two years. He’s only a kid, he’s playing for the team he loves, he has no reason to leave early. Very similar to Jack Wilshere in that way. Secondly, Dortmund are the best team in Germany at the moment. They have a golden generation of players, thus making his departure even less likely. Thirdly, why the hell would any club sell their superstar asset before the Euros? You just wouldn’t. You’d wait for him to have an amazing tournament then you’d sell him for outrageous money.

One day, we might sign him. If we did, it would be an epic piece of business. Sadly though, I think even at 19, that ship has sailed…

Are you ok people? Do you want some cheering up?

Well, take this as you will, but all the major papers seem to be awash with stories of a summer clear out of barbaric proportions. We’re going to cull a lot of the squad away and sweep out the dead wood. Almunia, Fabianski, Squillaci,  Park Chu-nooo, Chamakh and Arshavin will all be shown the exit door. Now, the cynic in me say that we were fed this nonsense last year and it never materialised. Apparently, behind the scenes, Arsene Wenger is very indecisive on player acquistion / sales. One minute he wants a whole bunch of players, the next minute, he sees little Johann, playing on his gameboy in the car park… and he can’t resist…

‘Guys, let’s give this one more go… the belief is strong and JD has a winning smile!’

Then we’re back to square one. I’m pretty sure that last year Arsenal fans were saying things like…

‘I think Arsene feels really let down by the squad this year, he’ll make the right decisions in the summer’

Nay… I’m certain. This year feels like it could be different from the off though. Firstly, Arshavin was shown the exit door way earlier than you’d expect. Almost to the detriment of our campaign. Park Chu-Young, Squillaci and Chamakh have been virtually ignored all season. There are very few players we’ve been face palming at their inclusion this year… bar that time when the full back positions were empty. I know people moan about Ramsey, but he’s a good player. He might not be world class yet, but for me, he has fantastic potential and he’s a threat when he’s on the pitch. Give the man time and he’ll show you what he can do. Back onto the exits… Denilson was shuffled out, Bendtner was sent to Sunderland, Carlos Vela was sent to Spain.

I’m hoping that come the summer, we take the same approach Mike Ashley took. If we can’t sell a player, let’s give him away. Technically, you’re not giving away a player who earns £75k a week that has two years left on their deal. You’re clawing £7.8mill back. Factor that over 6-7 players and you’re talking business. If the club need my e-Bay skills this summer, I’m more than happy to help.

The journo’s also seem to be pretty certain around the players we’re looking to bring in.

Podolski, M’Vila, Vertonghen and possibly this Giroud chap.

For me, that’s a great summer. Throw in Hoilett who I’m pretty sure we’ll be making a move for and you’ve had a great summer. Tie down Song, Theo and Robin… and well, jeez, you’ve had the best summer since records begun.

I just hope this isn’t press talk for the season ticket holders. We’re all signing up again. The run in has been great, things are looking good. The club just need to go out and deliver on the leaked stories this year. Another failed summer won’t be acceptable (I say that like we have recourse). However much we’re enjoying the position we’re now in, it still masks a pretty average season full of pretty dark lows. If Wenger goes out this summer and proves he still has the fire of 98 in him… there is no reason we make some serious progression over the next two years.

Anyway, that’s all I’ve got for you. I’ll be back tomorrow as usual!

[twitter-follow screen_name=’LeGrove’ show_count=’yes’]

Have a great day.

423 Responses to “Almunia, Chamakh and Park-to-go | Vertonghen, Podolski and M’Vila to join”

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  1. Mayank

    That’s a very lofted position to take. ‘I blog because I’ma fan and you blog to get a reaction.’

    How does that even work? Ask any of the people I’ve ever been in an argument with on here if they think I’m just trying to get a reaction. Yeah we may all disagree vehemently about things but I always try to substantiate my position.

    Or can no-one who disagrees with you be in any way, be genuine about his opinions. That’s pretty paranoid.

  2. Thomas, it's up for grabs now..

    Maureen’s personality aside… And IF the managers post became vacant he would not be my first choice.. Hmm.. I would rather see Hiddink or similar in the frame..

    Notwitstanding that.. Mourinho, in my opinion, is an excellent coach. There are also many coaches who have spent big and failed.

    Of every Real Manager, he now has the best win ratio since 1910… And he has won a trophy with Real. Copa Del Rey 2011.

    No other Real Manager has a better win ratio.. 77% since he took over. check it out here!

    (OK then, you can quote Del Bosque who has 100% for 1 game in charge in 2006! 🙂 ). So to say he has done that in a pretty shite league is an unsustainable argument when you compare like-for-like. This stat compares him with every Real manager in the same league. If he stays around a few years more, we will see how that stacks up in the trophy cabinet.. or not!

    In the last 3 years he has been the only manager to break Barca’s strangle-hold on the CL. With Inter. He out-foxed them tactically over two-legs.

    He has won whevever he has gone.

    In the last 13-14 years.. (I may be a year or so out chaps!) only 1 team outside the Deloitte money league top 10 has won the CL. Mourinho’s Porto.

    The season is not over, and his team is still very much in the frame for La Liga, and in the Semi (almost!) of the CL.

    Overall I would say the guy has a damm impressive record whatever you may think of him.. If he ever came to us, and blew our bank stash and won us a title or two.. or god forbid the CL, I dare say there would be a few banners hanging in the Emirates saying “In Jose we trust”!

  3. SUGA3


    quite frankly, given how much I criticised when the criticism was due, I may as well give some credit when it is due!

    of course I am not happy with winning fuck all, but this is a start of sorts, after declining on a regular basis, we now see some improvement, no?

    I am not saying everything is rosy, I am very far from it, but something good must have happened, given that we are looking good for once!

  4. Keyser

    Thomas – Come on mate, even if we begun with this statement, don’t you think there’d be an opposing argument ?!

    “So to say he has done that in a pretty shite league is an unsustainable argument when you compare like-for-like. ”

    When they drew against Malaga the other week, Mourinho was looking to break a record for consecutive wins or equal it, 11 or 12 I think, who held the record ? Pelligrini.

  5. Mayank

    Thomas all of your points are correct. Jose, is great at managing huge egos and creating super-teams on an unlimited budget. But his skills aren’t suited for a job like our club’s.

    So I find any comparisons pointless and the worship nauseating.

    Not that he would want to join in the first place.

  6. andy

    Geoff and all other AW haters … Your opinions count as much as others but if this is a blog you have to accept others too … John cross wrote an interesting report. He talked about the emirates as a trophy as we didnt go into financial problems … I do believe AW made mistakes but he is far better than some of you wrote … He is capable of winning trophies again imo

  7. dennisdamenace

    You know Pedders, i admire your optimism, but you forget a couple of things regarding the supposed off-loading of the garbage that purveys our team….
    Wenger’s reluctance to admit he was wrong about ANY player.
    The owner, board and Wenger’s insatiable greed to turn a profit.
    You also have to factor in the simple fact there are very few clubs that are going to be willing to take this dross off of our hands.
    Do you really see this lot tearing up the contracts of five, six or seven players and showing them the door? Imagine the indignity of having to release so many from his pet project, imaging the ignominy of having to say goodbye to the “millions” they would demand and expect from (unrealistic) transfers……
    Hold you belief until after ST deadline day fella, the truth will out again.

  8. Spectrum

    Dan Ahern – there’s optimism, which I’d love to experience, believe me, but which recent years have left me bereft of, unfortunately. And then there’s BLIND optimism. The type the A.K.B.’s want us to share in, despite evidence to the contrary. That is why we call them deluded. They think that anyone who criticises him “after all he has done for us”, is a disloyal traitor whose sanity is under question. They then proceed to spout the usual list of achievements he HAS done, conveniently overlooking what he hasn’t, and isn’t doing.

    They elevate the man ( Wenger ) above the club. To the point where they believe he IS the club. That we were a footballing wasteland before he graced us with his presence. This cult of personality has reached absurd levels. It has distorted the A.K.B.’s sense of perspective. And while they continue to support their idol, the unambitious board think everything is hunky dory, and that their policies are the right ones. The profits come first, and our priorities are wrong., and the team suffers as a consequence. We’re rusting, folks. That in a nutshell, is what it is. A winning run or two isn’t going to alter the fundamentals.
    ” In Arsene we rust.”

  9. Thomas, it's up for grabs now..

    And Pellegrini is the man with the second best win ratio behind Mourhino. 75% v 77%. So yes those too are close. But that’s a great stat too that you posted. I didn’t know that.. So Maureen went 10 or 11 straight wins in La Liga.. Now that’s bloody impressive! 😉

    And I just popped in.. long day at work.. Off now for a beer. I’ve gotta fly.

  10. gambon

    So now Milan are the new Man Utd eh?

    Are they part of the conspiracy?

    (If you ARENT one of the retarded conspiracy nuts on here then this isnt aimed at you)

  11. Bade


    Sorry mate, I’m not sticking, all I meant was Jose spent much less and will achieve more

    Anyway, as I said the 2nd galacticos are the best proof how great Jose is, he made them much better

    As for us being not the richest club, well we are the 5th richest club as for revenue and value

    Its a different argument that Arsene trying to force some weird spending policy

    Mind you two things:

    1. Oue net spend is one of the lowest ever in the EPL, it’s down to the nutty Arsene will
    2. Arsene said we can spend more than Chelsea, so that really kills your argument

    Another think man City weren’t a power before 2 years, yet we didn’t win

    We have more money than the Mancs to spend, yet we opt not to spend, or spend on average dross (look at the last JD contract extension)

  12. Thomas, it's up for grabs now..

    Mayank, Keyser….

    I just think Mourihno is a great coach. He has an impressive record. You can chip away at it and introduce contributory reasons why that is so.. Like money for example, which is usually a factor.

    Whether he would be ‘suitable’ for Arsenal is another discussion.

    How many Arsenal fans think Ferguson is a nob.. how many of us have called him a prick over the last 15 years or so.. Yet the man is a good manager.

    Josip makes some interesting points, which I was not aware of at all. However, how far outside football do we step here?

    If Mayank think the mans a prick with ears. fair enought! You won’t find him in Calcutta working with the Sisters of Charity, However, you will find him at the helm of a successful club. There is no reason, based on his track record, to say he would be an abysmal failure with us just as there is no guarantee that he would succeed.

    I would put him ahead of Moyes for example. The man’s done great things at Everton on a very limited budget. Top marks.. However, my opinion would be that HE would be unsuitable for Arsenal. Simply because he has no big club experience, he has no experience of managing top players. Mourihno would IMO be able to attract bigger and better players to Arsenal than Moyes would don’t you think? Mourinho has extensive experience in Europe, where we want to compete. Moyes? Just using Moyes as an example here, and I can understand why he would be more favourable to some. However, that’s my take on it!

    Like I said, he would not be my first choice. But when he is rubbished as a football coach I think that’s taking predjudice a bit too far!

    Now chaps, I really am off! Will read your replies later through a Jameson laced viewpoint! 😉 none of that Babycham Peroni for me!

  13. Josip Skoblar

    I understand your rationale but disagree with it. The manager’s behaviour and personal opinions matter to a club. For instance, no respectable club would condone a racist manager. Maureen is as far as I know no racist, but his antics are a constant worry at Real as they were at Inter and Porto. Big clubs worry about the ‘brand’ and Maureen is always one provocation away from a major scandal.

  14. Mayank


    The first galacticos were assembled at half the cost. Assuming we mean that the galacticos started with FIgo. They did well enough but couldn’t sustain the success.

    Mourinho’s galacticos are more expensive and are yet to achieve anything of note. Once they do we can see if they sustain it over 3 years like the previous galacticos.

    Assuming Jose sticks around for that long.

  15. Josip Skoblar

    No recent article on Maureen, but I remember watching a comedy show on Portuguese TV las year which poked fun at Maureen’s ‘Napoleonic’ tendencies…

  16. Josip Skoblar

    Don’t get me wrong, I sometimes wish that we had a winner like Maureen!
    I just can’t see Maureen being appointed by the clique running our club. They of course know about Maureen’s flaws. Can you imagine PHW working with Maureen? 🙂

  17. Keyser

    Thomas – “Like I said, he would not be my first choice. But when he is rubbished as a football coach I think that’s taking predjudice a bit too far!”

    Heh, rubbished ? even you said contributory factors, and these aren’t your normal ones are they, Real Madrid aren’t your normal club, Kaka and Ronaldo aren’t your average players.

    It’s not that Mourinho hasn’t done well, it’s holding his record up at Real Madrid as something worthy of worship.

    You said you can’t argue that the league isn’t weak, of course you can, Valencia finished closer to relagtion than they did the top 2. They won the league several years ago.

    ..and then you can apply that to the win ratio it doesn’t even include games against Barcelona because his record against them bar one Copa Del Rey final is abysmal, Real Madrid are basically going to win La Liga because their squad is stronger and that goes back to Pelliegrini who had more points and goals ? Then Mourinho had last year.

    He didn’t have to build a team, he didn’t even have to beat Barcelona directly, Real Madrid have just waited for them to tire.

  18. Mayank


    First things first, absolutely love Jameson. I’d have Fergie of 15 years ago over Moyes and Mourinho as well. Moyes is not even an option for me. To me he’s like a Mourinho who works at smaller clubs. What will Everton have to show after Moyes leaves?

    Both Mourinho and Moyes, are managers who are very good at achieving tasks set by the board. Its just that the scale of what each is doing that is incomparable. Doesn’t mean they can swap jobs though.

    Maybe I’m being unfair to Moyes here since he’s shown a lot of loyalty to Everton.

    To me a great manager builds something. Fergie has. Arsene has. Mourinho hasn’t. Any stats that you might point out are preceded by that fact that he’s managing the biggest assortment of stars we’ve seen in the last 50 years.

  19. gambon

    Lol, pathetic comments on Mourinho

    Especially when the same people are part of the Wenger protection force. Wenger, the guy who has never defended a league title, never won the CL, lost more finals than won and thinks third is a trophy.

    Jose is a legend, you want proof:

    “He should especially explain to Arsenal supporters how he can’t win one single little trophy since 2005.

    Instead of speaking about Real Madrid, Mr Wenger should speak about Arsenal and explain how he lost 2-0 against a team in the Champions League for the first time.”

  20. Thomas, it's up for grabs now..

    “…Mourinho found a new managerial post in April 2001 with União de Leiria, whom he took to their highest-ever league finish of fifth place…” (WikiP article on Maureen..)

    His achievment of winning the CL with Porto?

    Bringing Inter to their first CL final in 38 Years.. and winning it?

    I’m not holding up just his Real record. He’s still to win big there.. However, he’s looking ok so far? Leading La Liga, pretty much in the semi-f of the CL!

    I’d be seriously happy to see Arsenal leading the PL and in the Semi-F on the CL at this point.

    So while he was waiting for Barca to tire.. he jogged along bringing Real to a Win Ratio of 77%.

    So can we jog along at a win ratio of 57.2% and wait for City/United to tire???

  21. Keyser

    Thomas – Porto’s by far his biggest achievement.

    Inter ? Moratti invested hundreds of millions into the club, think they’ve worked with massive losses for several years now, even when they won the Champions League they had a 67 million pound loss with a wagebill of 200 million Euro’s or something along those lines.

    Winning La Liga won’t be big, winning the Champions League is what they’ve brought him there for, and it’s what the board at Real Madrid expects for the money they’ve invested, it’s why they let Pelligrini go.

  22. Keyser

    “I’d be seriously happy to see Arsenal leading the PL and in the Semi-F on the CL at this point.”

    Well, when we invest 400 million into the team, erase all other competition bar One other team, then we can Mourinho over, that’s all it comes down to really.

    You can’t sit there and say we’re rubbishing him when you refuse to acknowledge the differences between teams/clubs either.

  23. gambon

    Haha Ice is lucky this week

    1- Its school holidays so hes allowed to stay up posting about his hero, the mighty gambon

    2- His dad has been sent down for kiddy fiddling, so no more pillow biting for young ice-cunt.

  24. Albo

    Do you mind me asking – what is it that makes you think all these transfer stories are leaked by the club? I mean, we all know that journos just make up whatever the hell they like when it comes to transfer talk, just to fill column inches and sell papers. Why try to blame that on the club?

    So far the only dodgy rumour that I can think of that sounds like it could have come from the club is the one Matt Scott wrote about the £100 million warchest. And even that was dismissed by most sensible people as nonsense. (Though not by Le Grove who had Scott on their podcast that week so had to pretend it was really exciting breaking news ;-))

  25. Mayank

    Why do they leave Cesc in the bench? He was easily their second best player of the first half season. Though he just got as many assists as Song.

  26. Ice

    Gambon without a doubt you are some fat gutted middle aged prick living in a bedsit in north London working as a civil servant , can’t get a woman, posting on social networking sites on an assumed profile,pretending you know something about football (ha ha) always the last kid picked out in the line for the game hey?

    Sad fucker!


  27. Bade

    Now people talking nonsense about Maurinho

    A manager should win trophies, and Jose do this on an annual basis almost

    He won the CL twice, the UEFA once, won league titles in Portugal, England, Italy, and retained the titles in all leagues, now on corse of beating one of the best ever teams (that spent more than he did in the summer, adding Cesc and Alexis), and people say its all down to some facors, not his ability?

    Hahaha, those AMBs are unbelievable, how can they claim that but defend Arsene when claimed against him that he got the core of the back 5 and DB10???

    So in Arsene’s case its all ability and in Jose’s it all some other factors?

    Weird stuff

  28. Gunner2301

    Pedro great post and fab graphic. I see you’ve found your niche there.

    Evening Grovers. Skandi welcome back hope all went well. Happy Birthday DS have one on me.

    Spectrum I’ve just posted on Arsenal Truth, like you said he tells it as it is and needs our support. He’s the only one I read apart from Le-Grove

    I won’t believe anything on signings until I see the player in our shirt. We have had enough disappointments and shouldn’t fall so easily for the usual bullshit. We all know what’s required, we can judge Wenger in May and then again on the 1st September.

    It would be nice if Juve were interested in Djourou I can’t possibly see why but i’d prefer to contemplate that than a Djourou testimonial in 2014.

    When everyone is getting excited about who we might get rid of in the Summer, maybe we should take some time out to consider: –
    How much they have cost us financially
    How the inability to rely on them has hampered our progress
    How they have taken up a position that could have been filled by someone else
    Who bought them, talked them up, paid them, gave them increased contracts, maintained faith in them for far too long and who is ultimately responsible.

    Wenger should have walked 3 times over but hasn’t seen fit to do the decent thing. For those who think he is like Lazarus risen from the grave, think again. Any manager that has been sacked over the years given enough time could fuck up, ride the storm, go on a good run, fuck up again, ride the storm rinse and repeat. The difference is they were never given the chance to recover after the first fuck up.


  29. Keyser

    “how can they claim that but defend Arsene when claimed against him that he got the core of the back 5 and DB10???”

    Shocking, it’s exactly like the Real Madrid situation and people don’t even consider it.

  30. Thomas, it's up for grabs now..

    In eight seasons of club management, including an eight month sabbatical in 2007–08, Mourinho has led his club to win its domestic league six times, the UEFA Champions League twice and the UEFA Cup once. Since 2002, Mourinho has not gone a full calendar year without winning at least one trophy.

    In managing in the Porteguese, English, Italian and Spanish Leagues, Mourinho has a win ratio of 69% overall.

    I’m fully aware of the weaknesses in comparing managing Real and the resources available in the PL and Arsenal. It’s difficult to compare like with like. Point taken!

    If just looking at La Liga, I think that his record of bringing them to a 77% win ratio has something to do with the manager also. No other Real manager had such a win percentage. He’s not the most successful, far from it.. but his reign there has yet to be finally judged. So let’s see how the CL pans out. He will of course be under pressure there if he doesn’t land it. Those fuckers are ruthless. I think they’ve had something like 15 managers since 96 when Wenger took over. Nonsense! And the richest club, so they have very high, almost unattainable standards. And most likely many good managers never got the breathing space there to develop their strategy. The management (club heirarchy) simply insisting to buy success.

    I still think he will have his work cut out to beat Barca in the CL Final, if that is how it pans out.. But losing to Barca is no shame is it? Many pundits now calling them the best club side they have ever seen.. Ala Souness etc..

    I remain unconvinced that he could not do a job with us, and with the resources we would make available to him.

    Nevertheless, ‘the special one’ has walked the walk wherever he has been. I think it’s fair to say, when with Inter, he didn’t outsmart Barca with money in the CL Semi. He took them on tactically and won. Losing 1-0 there and winning 3-1 at home. Will he do that a 2nd time in the CL. Hm big ask!

    Now after that long-winded one.. I am off.. I was stalled by my mate for a while so now the Jameson’s are stacking up..

    Cheers.. oh and Mayank you have good taste.. In whiskey’s! 😀

  31. Gunner2301


    I wouldn’t under estimate the task at a club like Madrid. If you think Wenger could handle it then maybe you need to consider again. He might be in his comfort zone not having the pressure of a big team. Porto weren’t really a star studded team when Mourhinio won the CL. Maybe he’s a manager who knows what he needs for a winning team and demands that the club back him.

  32. Mayank

    Gunner I doubt Arsene could do the job at RM. But I doubt he’s want to. The same way Mourinho wouldn’t want the Arsenal job. Porto were still the biggest club in Portugal.

    As for the CL, in their route to the cup they faced. Man Utd(who had finished 15 points from us), Lyon, Deportivo And Monaco.

  33. zeus

    Can Milan really do it. Would be very funny indeed. And Ironic especially after Wenger came out and said they had no chance.

  34. incesc

    i guess the difference between mourinho and wenger is

    moron – does every thing possible to win the league

    wanger – does everything possible to make it impossible to win the league


    moron – will spend all the money available, and get his squad sorted early with quality in every possible position, make sure every one is up to speed etc etc

    wenger- fuck working in the summer, leaves it all till after the season starts

  35. andy

    Guys jose is a real good coach because he is able to concentrate pressure from outside on him and not the team … If you ask a person say one word to real madrid they will say morinho and NOT CR … In more or less any other team people would first think about their star player … Barca is messi and not pep, city is silva and not mancini, bayern is ribery and not heynckes BUT real is mourinho – and that’s the main reason he is si successful, together with his tactical know how and good staff … But don’t forget some strange ref decision helped inter to win against barca, a clear pen not given for example …
    One interesting thing because its funny. In austrian tv there was a comparision between a foul of seedorf against xavi -seedorf was booked- and messi made the exact same foul on ambrosini and didnt get booked … Funny

  36. Gunner2301

    He’s always dangled that one in front of us anytime he’s been under pressure, probably for the idiots who really thought he could go to Madrid and survive. Wenger knows where his bread is buttered, he would struggle to manage anywhere else after the cushy ride he’s been given at Arsenal.

  37. Bade

    How can anyone argue against that Incesc ?

    Yeh Arsene is a better manager than Jose, What difference can be made with a 2 CL, 2 UEFA and 6 retained league titles in 3 different leagues. Well at least it can’t comparing to a whopping 5 4th trophies in 7 years!

  38. Gunner2301


    Maybe it was Ade and Squillaci that spoiled Monacos chances 😆 only kidding I don;t think they featured.

  39. incesc

    i think wenger would be amazing at madrid because they wouldnt let him do the buying.

    they would give him superstars to work with all over the pitch.

    look how well he does with our dross.

    he got 4th one year ehn cesc was imjured loads with a midfield of song, denilson and diaby. 3 of the worst midfielders in modern football.

    it would be good for him to cocentrate on coaching players and not buying them

  40. Gunner2301


    totally agree with your analysis of Mourinhio, anyone who rates Wenger over him is either an AKB or has just landed in a flying saucer. Mourinhio is a master at the drama and ramping the pressure up on the other team when it’s needed to throw focus off his own team and any issues they might be having. He uses spin to his and his teams advantage not against his own fans like in Wengers case.

  41. Keyser

    “i think wenger would be amazing at madrid because they wouldnt let him do the buying.”

    Which is what they’ve given Mourinho.

  42. Gunner2301


    This tells you all you need to know

    He’s a weak manager. That’s why he would never coach a team like Madrid. Wenger likes a Eutopia in his own image where everything is zen like and young players are in awe of him. With the issues, egos, selection headaches, tantrums, politics, press pressure, radical fans you really think Wenger could cope?

    He has looked like death warmed up for half the season and that is only due to self imposed pressure as there is no pressure on him at Arsenal. What do you think he would be like receiving death threats from fans, kidnap threats to his family, massive pressure from the board, dealing with Spanish politics in terms of which players should play due to nationality. I don’t think he’d last a season.

  43. Keyser

    Thomas – You brought up with percentages, in terms of La Liga and Real Madrid’s history don’t you think it’s telling that the managers with the top 2 are Pelligrini and Mourinho.

    In 100 years or whatever of their history the top 2 win percentages happen to be the last two managers, if you look at the points they managed and the goals scored, you’d say there was almost a natural progression.

  44. andy

    Gunner although you agree i didnt say i rate mourinho higher but he knows what to do to put the pressure on him … I really doubt he is aware of it – i think his endless arrogance helps him – he doesnt even think about how to act to put the pressure on him its his arrogance … But you may not forget every team he left is totally dead and over-aged. I would not compare SAF or AW or ancelotti to him because he has to prove he is able to rebuild a team after having success with the old one

  45. incesc

    yeah but with wenger Real would be different keyser

    first board meeting, wenger stands up to speak:

    “thank you real madrid for this opportunity. Now lets show them all, we can achieve for 4th by spending less than bolton, qpr and Wigan. I have a list of116- 17 year olds, some of which have barely played for charlton in league one, ever!…” and so on.


    “no arsene we have bought you hazard and goetze to play with benzema, ozil and ronaldo Now run along and play with diaby untill training.”

  46. Keyser

    He’d never coach a team like Madrid yet they keep coming back for him, while they begrudgingly accept Mourinho.

    He looked like death this year ? Heh, without Fabregas, Nasri or Wilshere, using 10 different full-backs and having to pull out desperate measures on the last day of the transfer window.

    Imagine if he two winners of the Ballon D’or, probably the best squad in the World, the second best player in the World, Higuain, Benzema, maybe Adebayor on loan, a 30 million pound left back to replace your second choice one. Some of the top young talents in the World, Ozil, Sahin, Spains top goalkeeper compared to Almunia ? Carvalho, Pepe, Alonso, though obviously Alonso isn’t quite Denilson, Di Maria..

    The richest club in the World, a massive World wide following, any money he needs and you don’t even have to beat Barcelona to win the league.

    Yeah, he’d struggle with that.

  47. andy

    By the way i would love to see mourinhos face if the board had told him he is not allowed to play lampard because of the fee the chavs would had to pay to west ham or if he was not allowed to buy drogba as no money was there … Funny 😉

  48. incesc

    he wouldnt last long 2301 but hed probably stay a couple of years and win a shit load of stuff.

    take all the bullshit away and just let him coach footbal., Dont let him have an agenda like trying to prove chelsea are wrong, or that agents are evil,

    hed never do it tho as you say

  49. Keyser

    He wouldn’t have to prove Chelsea wrong because he’d be at the Chelsea of the league, heh.

    How about we flip it, we even up the teams a little, they get Benzema we get Higuain, they have Marcello we take Coentrao they have one Ballon D’or winner in Ronaldo we take Kaka and I’m being generous by taking the older one. They have Alonso we take Khedira, they take Di Maria we take Ozil, then we send them a few of the players we’ve given games to.

  50. BOOZY

    if wenger managed madrid-
    sami khedira would be CB
    Xabi alonso would be a winger
    cristiano ronaldo a central midfielder.
    benzema a left winger and 90% of the players would be french speaking.

    There’s no limit to the destruction wenger would take to madrid.

  51. Gunner2301


    it’s tactical. Guilleme Ballaque explained how he used the politics around football in Spain to deflect scrutiny from the team when they weren’t performing well and had internal issues and made it look as if it was them against the world. He uses that to build a seige mentality around the team, we have seen him use this at various clubs and it seems to have the desired effect especially when it comes to a run-in. He is very clever it’s not all ego and about him (I’m not saying he’s not vain or anything), he knows when to manipulate a situation to the benefit of the team and does this time and time again to get the smallest of advantages over opposition teams. He did this with United and does it with Barca and it makes a difference.

  52. andy

    Boozy whats your problem with french speaking persons? Are you a little france racist :)? Henry, viera, sagna, koscielny, clichy, nasri all bad?

  53. Keyser

    Gunner2301 – The convenient side effect of him deflecting criticism by being a bit of a dick is everyone talks about him instead.

    Thing is at Madrid they usually see through it which is why he’s had such a hard time.

  54. andy

    Gunner i dont know exactly how he is achieving it but his arrogance is a big part in it and it is real and no fake 😉
    I still wonder if he is capable of winning with two or more generations at the same club without buying everytime 11 20mill+ players

  55. Gunner2301


    How do you suggest he deals with the egos? The biggest he has probably dealt with to date are Bendtner and Gallas. He can’t deal with conflict or contention in the squad and you think he can deal with a galactico squad?

    He’d have to be accountable for spending that amount of money on a single player – with that he couldn’t cope that’s why he sticks to £15mill he can easily brush them under the carpet without drawing attention to the bank balance.

    He would be indecisive over transfers like he has been all his life and lose out to other top teams consistently. For that alone they would sack him. Especially if Barca got a player they were after.

    Madrid are results orientated. Top 4 is not a trophy and he couldn’t blag them into believing that.

    He would have to consistently compete with Barca. That would be like asking him to compete evenly with United year after year, he couldn’t do it he fell out of the race about 7 years ago and Fergie has been lonely ever since. That”s when he started his 4th place trophy shit, because it’s easier than admitting defeat.

    The pressure from the press is way more at Madrid than he has ever faced at another club.

    The pressure from the fans would make him crumble. Mourhinho is undergoing real fan pressure and standing firm and getting results.

    Wenger is tactically inept. How on earth would he beat Barca, which is a requirement as Madrid manager when you have no tactics and don’t use video analysis of the opposition? 😯 Or know that a team has blatant weaknesses but you don’t exploit them because you tell your team to go out and play and focus on themselves and their own game (its a kop out).

    I’m not saying Madrid aren’t or have not been interested in Wenger or that he might have entertained the idea. However the reality would be that if he didn’t win anything he’d be gone. They can go through managers like grains of rice. Maybe Wenger needs to think about that.

  56. Gunner2301


    Despite having a hard time he’s still getting the results. The hard time he’s getting is for off field stuff which he doesn’t mind because it puts the focus on him not the players. Wenger tries to protect undeserving players even when he’s not under pressure, which is only to protect himself and his decision to either buy the player or play them, we’ve seen this time and time again. At least Mourinhio uses this tactic in a productive way.

  57. Gunner2301


    I’m sure I’m not the only one who’s noticed but Mourinhio is one of the best tactical managers out there. Meaning he sees and understands the slightest weakness and will exploit them. With this skill he could make an average team difficult to beat. I’m sure he looks at it and thinks if there’s money available to me why would I not spend it to do the best I can. Can you imagine if he didn’t spend and got trounced by Barca? Then that would be the reason to cruficy him. Only Arsene could get away with that.

  58. andy

    Hm gunner interesting point but you are way off … How did AW ever win anything without knowing anything? You compare him to a 5 year old child without any knowledge … Why did we beat barca a year ago? Why did we defend quiet good and got a score of 1:1 at camp nou until a poor ref decision? Of course because wenger said: boys go out there and win and nothing else … That is simple bullsh.t … Wenger knows football maybe not best but very good and you cant say its not true because its fact

  59. Gunner2301


    I’m not saying Wenger doesn’t know football, because he could never have been where he is without knowing football. However there is a fallacy and I don’t know where it’s arisen from that Wenger must be this great tactical manager who goes out with a plan of how to beat teams. That;s not his style of management.

    The reason why he had success with the George Graham team is because they largely knew what they were doing and knew their jobs well. He raised there game by making them fitter and healthier not through new tactics. He added some flair players and hey presto. He has struggled to replicate that with a youth team of his own choosing precisely because they didn;t know what they were doing and didn’t know their jobs and looked to him for direction which he was unable to give. Now he has had to revert back to pros who know their craft.

    If you don’t believe me maybe you’ll listen to Tony Adams or you’ll think he;s talking bollocks as well

    And if you imagine Tony has been as diplomatic as he can be given his respect for Wenger you might realise the true picture. Why do you think players have left and dissed our preparation and training for games having seen how it is done elsewhere?

    Why else have we been going for years with the same problem areas and despite what Wenger does he seems incapable of addressing it?

    How do you explain the Barca result. Well I’ve seen Barca play a few times and that was one of their worst performances I’ve seen and that’s not because we made them play that way. They just didn’t turn up and I don’t know why. But when they play their game and we have zero shots on target and zero corners in a full game and the only shot RVP had he got sent off for, that puts things into perspective. We are nowhere near them so lets not let one freak result convince us otherwise. That would be like saying United can beat us 8-2 on a weakly basis, it was a freak result.

  60. Gunner2301

    Thing is we’ll never know if he would succeed at Madrid because he’d never have the balls to go there so that ones settled isn’t it?

  61. andy

    Ok gunner you are right. You cant take one or two results and base an opinion on it. Lets take a look at last years defence – which is a weakness isnt it? We conceded less goals from open games than utd which is sensational if you consider this is our problem number one. We conceded more than half out of set pieces which is less practice than concentration of players and GK as we defend on man-to-man base. As i told you before AW knows not best but he knows well and there are not many coaches better than him. And if we are that bad and AW coaches that bad, how are we possible to win our last 7 games? Just luck? Just individual skills? We did not concede in our last two games – cause of luck? Ok bad example due to drenthe’s goal but i think you know what i am talking about. If he is that bad we would not be able to be third or fourth but relegated …

  62. andy

    Oh and gunner – i have forgotten to tell you i am really disappointed by your last comment rrgardiing wengers balls. You say he is a bad coach and now you say he lacks balls to not join real … He loves our club and you say its a fault … Thats a real shame on you

  63. Keyser

    “He would have to consistently compete with Barca. That would be like asking him to compete evenly with United year after year”

    Real Madrid are the richest club in the world, their Revenue is the highest not Barcelona despite what they’ve won, it’s the other way around mate, and yeah that should settle it.

  64. Gunner2301


    Jeez we’re winning our last 7 games because the players decided to play like they can do. Before they weren’t that’s clearly obvious. There is no tactical master stroke there. You could argue that with so many contracts up this season they’ve decided to wake up Rosicky in particular. You can’t have the spell he’s had for the last 2+ years and then a month before you’re contract is due you are MOM for how many consecutive games? Give me a break. Theo is getting pressure from AOC and he didn’t have Sagna. Ramsey hasn’t played much, which is a big factor which you may want to deny but our midfield is more fluid without him. Not my kind or player and I don’t see the need for him. Backup Arteta otherwise sit on the bench. So all in all a combination of factors and note I don;t recognise any great tactical manoeuver from Wenger or any epiphany just a number of factors coming together.

    If you noticed we have switched especially earlier on in the season a number of times from zonal marking to man-to-man back to zonal even within one match we have flitted between the two.

    We still don’t have a leader or organiser at the back and until we do we will ship the number of goals we have been shipping for the last few seasons meaning we will win nothing. Defensive coaching won’t organise your team on the pitch in a match and react to whats going on in real-time, we don’t have that and TV is not that man as good a defender he is. I thought he might be but he’s not.

    Arsenes philosophy isn’t based around defence it’s around attack. Vermaelen and Song get forward too much and no doubt it has cost us at times but Wenger seems fine with that as the attacking prowess of his players can be attributed to him.

    What makes you think he loves the Club? Because he says so? You mean like he said if we sell Fabregas and Narsi we’re not a big Club? Nasris not leaving he;ll let him walk free in a year if he has to? Last year was the best squad he’s ever had (funny how he wants to get rid of them all this year) Hmm anything Wenger says i take with a pinch of salt. Not because I was born cynical,because he’s made me that way. People don’t change their views of a manager (I never thought he was tactically astute by the way) for the sake of it. Maybe you need to consider if there is any justification for that, instead of thinking that I am taking a pop at him for the sake of it.

  65. Keyser

    “Jeez we’re winning our last 7 games because the players decided to play like they can do. Before they weren’t that’s clearly obvious.”

    How do you come up with this stuff seriously ? In the last seven games we’ve got some players ffs, we’ve actually got a set of full-backs, we’re not playing every 3 days we’re playing every week so they’re rested.

    So someone like Rosicky isn’t as much at risk of strains or fatigue and can go out and just run till he drops.

    Of course we’ve swtiched from different tactics to the back to others, we’ve had about 15 different defenders used across the back 4 ffs.

    I honestly don’t get why you can’t work that out for yourself ?!

    Look at Vermaelen, he wasn’t even present for most of last year through injury, he’s played at left-back for a proportion of this year and it doesn’t seem to register with you.

    How can you have a settled back four if it’s not the same one ? in those 7 games we’ve now kept 3 clean sheets I think. This doesn’t mean that this should be representative of things to come or the following 8 games, but right now it should look pretty good ?!

    Or am I wrong ?!

  66. Gunner2301


    You believe any Madrid manager could win the league but get trounced by Barca throughout the season and still be in a job? LMAO and what’s the revenue got to do with anything we’re talking about football results.


    Read what Tony Adams says, Alex Flynn, Fabregas in interviews this is documented shit not stuff I made up. So if the sum of what they are saying is that Wenger is a bad coach then so be it. I have said my piece around his lack of tactical ability and inability to have the defence coached properly and not be able to find a leader at the back. He has other failiings but I’ll save them for another time.

    His biggest failing is that he’s a liar and been proven as such. That’s where I start getting disappointed what about you?

  67. Gunner2301


    Regardless of what you say about TV I’m not really concerned if he’s been absent for 15 years through injury, he’s a good CB but not a leader or organiser at the back end of.

    So now you want to put enforced player selection under the umbrella of tactics. Don’t make me laugh. Ok what about brining on Park and Chamakh when you’re chasing a game? Master stroke don’t you think? Don’t sit there like you haven’t wondered WTF Wenger is doing half the time. Take of AOC kill the creativity and bring on Chamakh Yeah right. Oh Ramsey on the wing another classic all on 67 minutes. The team is getting through inspite of Wengers tactical fuck ups, so let’s not make out he’s a Ranieri tinkerman.

  68. George Jetson

    The math is simple, dump 25M in wages and reap 30M in transfer fees, pay the taxes, ad 30M from last summer’s sales to the pot and we have 50M to spend and raises for key players we must keep.

    M’Villa is the key signing to make happen this summer.

  69. Keyser

    “He would have to consistently compete with Barca. That would be like asking him to compete evenly with United year after year, he couldn’t do it he fell out of the race about 7 years ago and Fergie has been lonely ever since. ”

    That’s your quote, what does it mean if it’s all about results ? Explain it if you can please.

    “So now you want to put enforced player selection under the umbrella of tactics. Don’t make me laugh. Ok what about brining on Park and Chamakh when you’re chasing a game? Master stroke don’t you think? Don’t sit there like you haven’t wondered WTF Wenger is doing half the time. Take of AOC kill the creativity and bring on Chamakh Yeah right. Oh Ramsey on the wing another classic all on 67 minutes. The team is getting through inspite of Wengers tactical fuck ups, so let’s not make out he’s a Ranieri tinkerman.”

    This doesn’t even make sense, if you’re going from Zonal to man marking, back or vice versa, coul;dn’t that have something to do with personnel ?!

    If we don’t have any fullbacks and you’re putting Koscielny and Vermaelen at full-back because of their versatility, you tell me what position do you think they’d be best suited to ?!

    The Ramsey thing ? What at Everton where we won ?!

  70. Gunner2301


    Have we been conceding more than the previous year?

    08-09 = 37
    09-10 = 41
    10-11 = 43
    11-12 = 39 already on schedule for 45ish

    Conversation over

  71. Keyser

    I don’t really think you knew what the conversation was to begin with.

    Have we looked better in our last 7 games ? Yes, the question is why ?!

    According to you it’s because all of a sudden the players after 6 months decided to start playing, thats your explanation, the best you’ve got ?!

  72. Gunner2301


    To explain my comment – Any Madrid manager would be expected to beat Barca as well as win the league if not CL. There is no pressure on Wenger to beat any of our competitors just to finish in the top 4 which he can comfortably do and still lose to the top teams. This would not be acceptable at Madrid but Wenger has lowered his sights so much he doesn’t even have a rivalry with Ferguson anymore hence Ferguson getting bored now and drinking vintage red wine on his own.

  73. Gunner2301

    What’s you’re explanation why we haven’t been playing well sine the Carling Cup defeat? You;ll probably come up with many reasons so why can’t there be many reasons why we are starting to play well it makes logical sense in the absence of Wengers magic wand, which is probably what you want me to believe.

  74. Gunner2301

    I’m off to bed continue tomorrow. Bring some good arguments Keyser or I won’t be talking to you :Lol:

  75. Keyser

    Gunner2301 – The first ones pretty simple, unless you mean’t Wenger took the Barcelona job, it’s not like competing with United at all, because if you compare the clubs in both leagues, Real Madrid are the biggest club, they are the Man United of their league.

    Chelsea usurped both of our clubs and they becamse the main rival.

    The second one, I came up with a pretty obvious reason, what’s wrong with simply saying we’ve got some consistency in our team selection.

  76. Daniel

    Okay, so let me get this straight:

    1. We have had a terrible injury record this year.
    2. We lost our two best players during the summer and they were not replaced.
    3. We had one of the worst starts in our history.
    4. Wenger is shit tactically
    5. Wenger cannot motivate players
    6. Wenger has lost any ability that he ever had to bring in good players.

    Does that about cover it? And yet, it’s nearing the end of the season and we are sitting in 3rd place and over the last 23 games, we’ve been the best team in the league. So… Wenger most be doing something right regardless of all that he has done/is doing wrong. But I guess that makes me an AKB.

  77. Daniel

    Quote of the day:

    gambon – ‘If you ARENT one of the retarded conspiracy nuts on here then this isnt aimed at you’.

    Why don’t you tell us about happened on 9/11? hahahaha

  78. andy

    Gunner i was off yesterday so i didnt answer you sorry 😉
    Can you explain me something … Why do people tend to only ses extreme sites in bad situations? If you are intelligent – and as you try to base your ideas on arguments it looks like you are – can you tell me why you can only see black and/or white, best and worst but nothing in between? There are AKBs and wenger-is-worst. Although not keyser nor daniel nor i believe wenger knows best we know he knows well … You try to say he knows nothing … He made mistakes – of course he cant say the media ‘this and that was wrong’. Of course he seems to be ignorant because he has to look like. What to you think players would do if a coach accepts mistakes anytime and tend to change everything after some critics? They wouldnt have any respect … So try to be a little bit less hateful and try to see greys iso just black/white. You know what he dud wrong but you have to accept that there are still things which are good and even great …

  79. Geoff

    Morning all, I had a re-think after reading all the informative comments on here last night.

    Wenger is the best manager in the world.

    Nothing is his fault.

    Whatever he says that doesn’t come true or happen he didn’t mean, or he was taken out of context. (judge me in May, this is the best squad I ever had, if we sell Cesc and Nasri we won’t be an ambitious club, I have no money, Chamakh cost us nothing, etc, etc)

    The reason he’s never defended a title is not his fault, he has no money.

    The reason he’s lost more finals than he’s won is not his fault he has no money.

    The reason he’s never won a Champions league or a Euro cup, is not his fault, he has no money.

    Fourth and third are trophies, the Carling, Fa and Euro cups are clearly not as we aren’t in them.

    Pre season isn’t about money, it’s about the team, until of course he’s offered some for travelling to the far east before having to qualify for the champions league.

    Oh and all that money he earns, he’s worth it, look at his record.

  80. Thomas, it's up for grabs now..

    Excellent Daniel.. You’re almost there now.. Well done..

    Now for the platinum membership card, you do really need to pay more attention and not miss opportunities to apply the selective memory recall to Arsenal’s records.

    Now you missed a great opportunity with Gunner2301 at 01.00 to apply the selective recall defence. For example you could have easily said.. well, if you actually discount the 8 goals at OT and the 4 against Blackburn we have a good record.

    Please pay more attention. It’s grabbing the opportuinities like this will give you full membership and graduate you to Uncle Tony’s inner rectum.. sorry… I meant Sanctum goddammit.. Sanctum…

  81. jnyc

    Again im agreeing with your blog view. Get us three solid players,EARLY IN THE WINDOW! get rid of true wastes of wages in any way possible, and of course keep our guys, except, i would sell walcott and use money to improve his position, if possible. Im guessing he will never be worth more than now, but i still hope he proves me wrong, and besides, rvp really likes him, so thats part of the calculation.