I hope Arsene doesn’t sign

by .


1000 games. It’s a big number. The managers first 500 games were all about changing the world. He did that. He introduced a powerful brand of stylish football that put Arsenal on the map forever and changed perception in a quite unbelievable way. Arsene Wenger was the man who took a wire basket making company and turned it into the biggest marketing brand in the world, he was the person that made Burberry cool again… he was the guy that set the bar in North London.

The second 500 games, the success has been a different kind. He masterfully meandered the stadium move, keeping us competitive, an incredible achievement that is possibly one of his finest. However, the last 5 years have seen him fall off the elite manager train. The last 500 league games have seen him lose his touch in the transfer market, fall behind in the world of tech and consistently lose his way against top teams.

Yesterday, the starting line up was a bit of a shambles. I can’t believe that, against a team of high energy power houses, we didn’t opt for a more energetic side. No Flamini against a side like Chelsea is always a problem, yesterday, that combined with the Ox and Santi was a disaster waiting to happen. Up front, we had absolutely no pace whatsoever. Podolski, Giroud and Rosicky were not exactly a winning combo.

Without even having to think about it, that says a few things to Chelsea.

1. No pace up front means you can press higher up the pitch.

2. No real power and pace in midfield meant Chelsea could press hard in the opening 45 minutes and bully us.

… basically, Chelsea could implement the same tactics most top teams have tried to activate against us. Press our midfield hard, force a mistake at the half way line, break and you’re in on our box in 3 seconds.

So what happened? Well, in a carbon copy of Liverpool, we went down almost immediately. Our game was open and kamikaze, a ridiculous approach to take at Stamford Bridge. We did manage to carve a chance, Giroud was slipped in by Tomas Rosicky, he squeezed through 3 defenders and proceeded to duff his finish that allowed Cech to make the save (like at Liverpool, a sharper finish there maybe changes the game).

Arsenal regained possession, then lost it as Chamberlain looked to play a pass to Gibbs (who was so far up the pitch it was a joke), Eto’o was slipped in and showed Giroud how you finish by curling a superb shot inside the far post.

Oh dear. Had Arsene put a game plan in place to counter a Liverpool style disaster when we go 1 down early? Don’t be so ridiculous. We continued to play outrageous expansive football in a style more open than a under 6s 5 a-side game on a full pitch. Santi lost the ball to Matic, Chelsea broke and Schurle buried his shot in the bottom corner.

The third goal was another lost ball in midfield, a quick break, followed by a Chamberlain flying save to keep Torres out. The hilarity really set in when Andre Marriner sent off Gibbs instead. Well, you know how hard it is with these mixed race boys, right? Jokes aside. No actually, the decision was a total joke. Hazard stepped up an buried the penalty. Lukas went off on and one came Vermaelen.

Arsenal, 3 down inside 17 minutes.

Things didn’t get any better, we were an absolute shower for the rest of the half. No shape, no fight and no idea what the hell was going on. Chelsea carried on knocking on the door and managed to make it 4 before half time when they won the ball in midfield, released Torres out wide on the right, he cut the ball into the 6 yard box where Oscar was on hand to bury it… Arteta couldn’t keep up. It was painful to watch.

The second half saw the intro of Flamini and Jenkinson, which gave us a bit more stability, but didn’t stop us conceding more goals. The fifth goal game from yet more terrible midfieldery… Tomas played a pass to Arteta who couldn’t make it, Chelsea nipped in, Oscar had a dig at goal and Chesney made a total hash of the shot. Errors are creeping back into his game and that selfie is looking pretty fu*king embarrassing right now. Time to bring Fabianski back into the fold? I think so. He’s not let us down since he came back last year. He’s the right age and he’s certainly doesn’t boast the arrogance of his Polish counter part.

The final nail in the coffin came when Salah was played in with a ball over the top, he took his time and slotted home with ease.

Arsenal finished the game having conceded a whopping 6 goals with no response. An absolute joke, but jeez, this isn’t a rarity. We conceded 6 against City and 5 against Liverpool. How many top flight managers so regularly manage sides that get spanked so hard? AVB was sacked for his mauling at the hands of Liverpool. The awful thing about Chelsea yesterday was that it wasn’t a surprise. That’s the state we’re in as a club, a spanking of epic proportions isn’t unusual, a loss against a top competitor is standard.

Concluding points

Broken Record: I’ve been saying the same things all season, so this feels like it’s going to be a bit flat, so bear with me.

Kieran Gibbs: What the hell is he playing at? He basically set up as a left winger from the off. We’re playing Chelsea, one of the best teams in the world, and he’s parked in their 18 yard box? What is he thinking? The first goal was a warning sign (he was no where for it), so how the hell is he that far out of position for the second? If he was where he was supposed to be, it would have been a simple 5 yard pass for Chamberlain. I really do wonder about this guy. Also, having Lukas on the left didn’t help… two players who’d rather not track back is an exciting proposition for a manager who studies opposition.

Tactics: I know people are insistent we’re this super fancy club when it comes to tactics, but I can assure you we’re really not. The reason we lose so regularly to the best teams in the world is because we’re so predictable. There’s no surprise when you play Arsenal. If you know what you’re going to get every time, it’s easy to plan against. There are at least 8 teams in the league who can give us a run for our money if they have a fit squad. It’s so easy.

Arsenal have no pace and power, so you simply press high up the pitch, pressure the midfield, they lose it and you’re in. Almost every goal yesterday came from that. It’s simple homework for someone like Jose. Teams like Southampton (who were unlucky against us), Spurs (who should have beaten us last week), Liverpool, City and even United do well because they know what they’re going to get.

Arsenal should have set up to play with solidity to start with. Flamini should have started with Arteta. We should have played Chamberlain outwide. We should have tried to get through the first half and then gone for them in the second. To just turn up and play with such outrageous disregard for the opposition reeked of amateur old school football.

Lessons Learned: Taking an absolute spanking at Liverpool should have at the very least, given the club something to work on when playing away from home. When we went one down, where was survival mode? We should have set out two banks of four and weathered the storm until half time. Not Arsenal, there was no response. Just more of the same. It’s shambolic management.

The Manager: He’s quite simply not good enough anymore. He was a visionary for 10 years, he’s not now. He hasn’t adapted his ideology and we’re not competitive as a result. At the highest level, he’s consistently found out because there are younger, sharper, more prep minded managers who can get the better of him. The malaise he’s dripped over the club can be seen all over the pitch. Wenger, sadly, has become a dinosaur of a manager.

Roberto Martinez will watch a loss up to ten times to assess where his club went wrong, how many times do you think Arsene watched the Liverpool game back? I mean, even if he watched it 20 times, where were the learnings? It was a carbon copy of Liverpool. An expensive manager who doesn’t learn from him mistakes. Not good.

Some people call me controversial and unreasoned when it comes to Arsene, but I can’t see it. I’m just calling the obvious things here. So please do disagree if you can find a hole in the below.

Tactics: He has no interest in the opposition. He’s on record as saying so and you can see it in our approach, which bar the odd personnel change, is always the same. There is never a surprise when Arsenal play.

Players: We’ve had one striker for two years. One very average striker. Olivier Giroud is the worst first team striker in the top ten. It’s an absolute joke he’s our only option. I mean, he’s not even a well looked after average striker, we knacker him out so he’s even more inept.

Depth: Look, we have 4 players out and we’re down to bare bones. That’s not right. Not with £140m sitting in the bank. It’s totally unacceptable planning and it’s so predictable. In the whole world, this January, all we could manage was Kim Kallstrom with a broken back. And look, 2 of our first team injuries in Aaron and Theo we knew about by January 5th. The lack of a striker has been an issue since last summer. It’s terrible, terrible management.

Power: For a manager who has a 1000 Premier League games under his belt, it’s a pretty stark weakness that he seems not to understand that to win the league you need power and pace. This squad lacks it big time. Liverpool (6 goals yesterday) are power and pace and it’s incredible to watch. Chelsea (6 goals) today, power and pace. Manchester City (5 goals), power and pace.  Why are we not recruiting players that can bring that to our set up? Where is our lightening striker? Where is our powerhouse midfield? Why do we only have one pace setter in the side? Why has Wenger forgotten the type of players that made his name?

Top 4 fails: We consistently come up short against the big teams. We have a manager who sits on £7.5m a year and he has NEVER beaten Jose. That’s not bad luck, that’s because he’s no where near the manager Jose is. It pains me to say that, but it’s the truth. He is consistently outsmarted by the better manager.

Funds: We have £140m available to spend on players, yet we have a squad that is desperately under resourced. There is no glory in a cash surplus that has no purpose. Your job, as a manager, is to ensure the best possible squad lines up every season. We have ONE striker. We’ve been through two transfer windows and that wasn’t addressed. It’s negligence in the extreme. As someone said yesterday, misusing funds at least demonstrates that you’ve tried. To have obvious squad deficiencies and fail to address them… well, it’s quite unbelievable.

Arsene Wenger has previously hidden behind having no cash. At times, justified, but generally, over the last 5 years, he hasn’t used what’s available to him to recruit properly. Forget sport science, forget rotating your squad, forget tactics… at the core of it, you can’t do anything without great players. If he can’t find players, that’s a massive failure in his backroom set up. If he’s simply not buying them, which appears to be the case, it shows you how out of touch he is with the modern game. It’s about doing it his way, regardless of the predictable outcome.

Contract: Do I think he should sign this contract? Absolutely not. I don’t want to watch another three years of the same… because let’s face it, he’s at pensionable age now, he’s not going to change his approach to management. He’s not suddenly going to accept that he has to take advice of experts who are better positioned and more specialised than him. He’s not going to reengineer the club to have a more modern feel to it’s infrastructure. He’s not capable of change now. He’s done as a top flight manager.

Do I have a list of names I’d suggest to come in? Yeah, I have names I think could do a great job. Is there any point in me saying them here? No, because there’s always a million reasons why people wouldn’t take them on. People forget that Arsene wasn’t brought on based on success or global reputation, he was brought on board because he had an exciting vision. Wenger came in, stopped players drinking 10 pints the Friday before a game, he brought in a better fitness regime, bumped up pay and he had the main prize winning attribute… he was the only manager in the Premier League who knew the untapped French market.

His hand has been revealed now. He doesn’t have the edge. He doesn’t have the desire to find it.

There are other managers who do have a vision. That could kick us on.  That could do wonders with a proper budget. Brendan Rodgers is a fantastic example of getting it right, I said last summer he’d get it right at some point and it looks like he might challenge for the league this year. Pep Guardiola proved himself internally at Barca and they took a punt on him, look at the results. Jurgen Klopp is another example, he didn’t have an incredible career at Mainz and ended it when he failed to achieve promotion for the second time. He was then approached by Dortmund to takeover after they finished 13th. He had a vision, he had charisma and he was a guy you could believe in.

‘But who would replace him?’ is weak deflection of the facts. Arsenal are stagnating. Our manager isn’t improving. We’re no where near competing for top honours because he doesn’t understand how to be an elite manager anymore. If you’re not moving forward, you’re falling behind. How many more chances do you give a manager who isn’t doing the elite manager basics right?

It would be sad to see him go, but jeez, give me a new project with a manager who wants to stay true to the Arsene inspired philosophy any day of the week. If we get that appointment right, we could be doing incredible things straight away. David Moyes and the United experiment doesn’t showcase the ‘careful what you wish for’ argument, it showcases what appointing a distinctly average manager can do.

Look at all the examples of getting it right… can Ivan do that? Well, I have no reason to believe he can’t. He’ll have plenty of access to opinion that can help steer his decision. He just needs to make the decision the same way you would a business one, just like Southampton did. Explore the market, don’t be swayed by glitzy reps and be a king maker. We don’t need a big name, we need a big idea with a great philosophy. Arsenal need to get the club back and they need to match their off pitch success with on pitch success.

Yesterday was disappointing, but sadly not unexpected. We just need to make the top 4 this year… then deal with the problems in the close season.

More on what we need to do to kill this season off tomorrow…





1,185 Responses to “I hope Arsene doesn’t sign”

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  1. jack

    Why do we need top 4. We haven’t a fucking hope of winning it. Do we need top 4 to add to the £140m. ? Do we need top 4 to attract top players, bollocks, wanker won’t fucking buy any top quality players. He buys players that are only good enough to get us top 4. So why the fuck do we need top 4 when fuck all changes year after year after year. How does it benefit the fans . well, its fucking sheep that follow Arsenal these days, and all we will read on this blog from now on is to make

  2. Jeff

    I don’t think he minded the big score losses to Pellegrini and Rodgers but against Mourinho, it was a real grudge match and we got annihilated. It wasn’t close, it wasn’t dignified and it must have hurt deeply.

  3. Cesc Appeal


    I too couldn’t help but have a little pang of sadness when I read the ‘in tears’ tweet.

    But then you have to remind yourself of the numerous, repetitive mistakes he’s made.

    In all honesty I think it’s best for HIM, to step down.

  4. gooner4lyf

    Sky reporting that Wenger has cancelled tomorrow’s presser lending more credentials to the rumor. It’ll be sad to see him go but I think it’s for the best if he leaves now.

  5. Rph105

    Wenger has to take plenty of blame for his activity in the summer. Missing out on Suarez was a huge mistake, and not picking up players in Jan when we knew Ramsey and Walcott were out was suicide.

    That said, the players didn’t play for the manager or the badge yesterday, and they’ve did this on many occasions now. Part of the blame lies at the feet of the players. Bottlers!

  6. Cesc Appeal

    The focus really will be all on Gazidis then, huge weight, finally has to justify his wages, the highest paid CEO in Europe will have to find us a manager, and he’ll need to do it pretty fucking quick. Because the new guy will have to buy big this summer.

    Steve Bould would be hideously underwhelming and dangerous.

  7. Jeff

    Can it be true. How ironic that Arsene should announce his resignation intent in a Chelsea dressing room with Mourinho only metres away laughing his head off! Putting it like that takes the sting out of the rumour now. I don’t know.

  8. Cesc Appeal

    Even prolific tweeters like Wilshere, Oxlade, Ramsey and Gibbs have said nothing.

    Podolski put something up 4 hours ago about a kick around with his kids.

    Rumour has it they are to say nothing remotely suggestive or give any interviews. The clubs last tweet was of Wenger post-match interview.

  9. Jeff


    We’ll know soon enough I suppose. I would love for Arsenal to start rebuilding in the summer with a top manager. We’ve been very stagnant for a long time and something needs to be disturbed or we’ll just fade in to insignificance.

  10. Cesc Appeal


    Yeah exactly, even if we got our wish and Klopp was roaming the touchline next season, it would still feel strange for a while…probably right up until the first trophy or set of huge wins.

  11. jltp7

    I was an AWK.Now after the last 2 seasons and this final debacle he has to go.Its tragic to see such a once proud fine manager being reduced to a shadow of his former self.If he has any self respect and true love for Arsenal he should go.Tactically inept,deluded and overpaid.Just retire and allow Arsenal to re-discover what made us the club we are.Great blog.

  12. Cesc Appeal

    Having said this, I’m not reading too much into this.

    This would be a HUGE story for any sports journalist. And not one site, not one of the great in the known journo’s is posting anything.

    Just one twitter account…it’s doubtful.

    But as I say, the coincidence of the media black out makes it intriguing.

  13. jack

    I don’t believe the rumours that he’s thinking of leaving, its a distraction that is earning him sympathy ,as some comments above have done. I’m afraid to believe its true, it would be one of the happiest days in my life. So I’ll live in hope and wait for Wigan to beat us to put the final nail in his coffin.

  14. Arsenal1886-2006

    ‘N5 hates you marble and your statements mean nothing, I just can’t take another evening of your absolute wank! you are a fucking idiot and I honestly hope someone slits your throat!’

    Almost choked on my tea when I saw this, comment of the day.

  15. Guns of brixton

    Would AW leave with the FA cup looming in?
    leave at the end of the season with a trophy and clean break. good for fans, AW, players and smoothnes of history.
    leaving RIGHT NOW means interim manager and that is enough said! AKBs will riot, eff up players performances and damage our top 4 position as well as transfer credibility.

  16. Leedsgunner

    Wenger’s going is he? Feel pity for him but if it is true it is the first honest thing he’s done for 8 years. He should have and could have left the club a legend but he now leaves it a broken man. No one to blame but himself though. He had every chance to strengthen the team but stubbornly chose not to and flip us the bird.

    Moral of the story?

    No one is bigger than the club. Not even Arsene.

  17. Keyser

    Arsenal1886 – I really worry about him, he started out ignoring him, realised he was a troll, told him so, and slowly, really tediously, Dial’s managed to drag him further and further into his world.

    The blog’s just full of trolls now.

  18. N5

    Yeah I did mean the whole of N5, I wasn’t talking about myself in the third person 😀 Keyser, I know he has a knack of dragging me back into his world. Help me stay out of it I beg you, it’s dark and stinky in his world.

  19. salparadisenyc

    1886 is unloading the zingers this evening.. LOL

    Mid I was following on the eurosport app, penalties sounded dodgey. Sad to of missed it though. Benzema my choice in our striker department, looks highly unlikely at this stage. Would tear the league apart though.

  20. N5

    Cheers Midwest and thank you for not adding any spoilers, unless of course those spoilers are Danica Patrick got naked and ran the last part of the race nude like in Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby.

  21. london gunner

    Whose gonna win La Liga then?

    Can’t believe how close it is!

    Would sort of love/hate atletico to win. Because it would be nice for the underdogs to win but it would also mean that there would be zero chance of signing Diego on as manager after that.

  22. andy1886

    Wenger out? there’s more chance of Russel Brand coming out. Selling newspapers, that’s all it’s about. Not a chance.

  23. london gunner

    Russell out LOOK! can see that in the sun/daily mail.

    Its a strange one considering Wenger. His had the option of signing a new contract for the past couple of months but has held off, all the press is saying the board are trying to get him to sign and I don’t think he was holding off for more money but rather to see which way the wind would blow.

    I have a feeling that he knows his time has come. Perphaps if we win the FA cup it might just be enough for him to decide to stay at Arsenal or it could in fact be the signal for him to retire with a trophy and a legacy intact (though not fully not even close)

  24. Same Story

    I reckon Real Madrid would win more trophies if they sold Ronaldo and got someone like Hazard.

    You know someone who actually works for the team rather than personal glory.

  25. london gunner

    Despite how poorly OX played yesterday, its actually bad Ox getting the red now as I would rather have Ox than Gibbs

    I think we need to steady the ship and have Verm as left back or even Sagna with Jenks at right back.

    Gibbs seems to me to have really awful positioning of late especially in the big games, maybe his trying to hard to do something of note but I can see him having a right mare against Swansea.

    Arteta has to be permanently benched watched the highlights for the second time he in know way should be blamed for the defeat but its obvious he simply cannot do what his role/ position on the pitch requires, his got heart but not the legs unfortunately.

  26. MidwestGun

    See but you are no different than most people who do that March madness stuff. Last time I was in a pool, a girl who picked the teams based on their mascots won.

  27. TitsMcgee

    Won’t get my hopes up regarding his retirement.

    I’d literally buy a bottle of Moet.

    Would be a little sad but would be for the best for the club.

  28. Arsenal1886-2006


    Makes me wonder if he has lost the players confidence, it definitely makes for an interesting game on Tuesday.
    On the other hand it could all be press bollocks, wouldn’t be the first time.

  29. london gunner

    Same Story

    Ronaldo is insanely dedicated and hardworking first on the training pitch last one to leave it.

    I don’t think Ronaldo is to blame he was bought to paper over the cracks off incompetent management from the president and the board and also was bought for the spectacle.

    You saw Ronaldo under a great manager like Fergie and he did the business and did it for the team the manager and of course himself as well.

    That being said I really rate Ancellotti so I can see them being in the trophies.

  30. Keyser

    “Last time I was in a pool, a girl who picked the teams based on their mascots won.”

    Yeah but at least you got her in the water first, nice.

  31. andy1886

    Midwest – I’m hoping that I do better than my Superbowl debacle – I went for Denver by twenty points….

  32. Keyser

    Arsenal1886 – Don’t really want to guess, you never know nowadays, they’re just not that good really, he trusts them, builds their confidence and it’s just the slow inevitability of it all that gets to them.

  33. Babatunde

    All the clasico penalties were justified. Apart from maybe ronaldo. But at first glance, its easy to see why all of them were given. Its funny that people input bias when making judgements
    Wonderful football from two wonderful teams. These teams are so far off us, its scary.

  34. MidwestGun

    Baba –
    Ronaldo made a lot more of it than was there, regardless it was outside of box, Neymars looked more a dive. But like you said an amazing match regardless of penalties.

  35. Same Story

    I think there was a replay that showed Ramos clipped Neymar’s heel but i agree he went down a bit easily.

    Who doesn’t nowadays eh, slightest little contact and the ref is blowing for a foul.

  36. Babatunde

    Iniesta is a don. I think barcelona have a slight edge going into an average matchh against madrid. They suffer to a lesser level what afflicts us imo and that is a lack Of pace/genuine wingers and a disproportionate dependance on tippy tappy. They will also need to fix their central defence obviously.
    If they had a really fast winger in their team then they could be even awesomer. My two cents.

  37. Same Story

    London Gunner i think Ronaldo maybe tries a bit too hard(at least in the big games), there were a few times today he could have played in a teammate but chose to go alone.

    Could be down to him not having the vision mind.

  38. N5

    Very true SS, I think if a forward even feels the wind blow near them they go down and 9/10 times a ref gives the forward the benefit of the doubt.

  39. Same Story

    Difference with Barca as well is that their players don’t really seem to be phased when pressed, even their defenders look pretty comfortable on the ball.

    That’s why the possession football works for them and not us i feel, at Arsenal too many players seem to shit their pants when the opponent pressurizes them.

  40. Babatunde

    He went down somewhat easily. But obviously ramos had it in for him. AND RAMOS DID TOUCH HIM. Ramos tried to clip him in a sly manner, barely touching him and hoping for the best. If ramos wanted, he could have avoided him totally.
    Also, I personally think that’s neymar made the right decision. Those are the rules and u must try to make the best out of it. If that happened to carzola, I would want him to go down cos u aren’t supposed to bring a goal bound down and the ref interpret the rules to favor the attacker so better make the most of it cos its the rules. You can hanker for a rule change later if you don’t like it. The rules now are still the rules.

  41. Babatunde

    My point is this; if neymar flat out dived I won’t like that. But I don’t think u can fairly call what he did a dive per se. Sure he made the most out of the contact but ramos ought to have known that that could be the case and avoided him totally if he wanted to. To me, its fair that neymar made the most of what happened.
    Again to me I think people are also this upset because its neymar. If that was messi who went down after that challenge, it won’t be this much talked about.
    It would be silly for me for nymar not to have gone down cos if the same thing happened to a barcelona defender, the madrid attacker probably won’t repay neymar’s gesture of “fairplay”. That’s just how it is.

  42. Babatunde

    Another thing people seem to forget is that neymar probably would have scored that if ramos didn’t touch him. In the replay, ramos touched his back and clipped his heel and that already puts him off balance. What are yÓu supposed to do in a title deciding match that is 3-2 to the opposition if not fall down. Many players have lost penalties by stumbling and struggling to stay on their feet when put off balance by defenders rather than falling at once(which, funny enough is easier to do).

  43. TOLI83

    Just had a text from my mate saying arsenal players have been banned from social media sights and there is now a press conference tomorrow been called.

    Anyone wake heard this?

  44. Arsenal1886-2006


    If he does go this summer then the next man has some job on his hands, the whole footballing side of the club will have to be restructured to make sure that no one person wields so much power as Wenger.
    Hopefully they will bring in their own scouts as well as trainers, something is not right with our scouting network when you look at some of the purchases made in the last decade.

    All speculation I know but I have a feeling he will go, the humiliation was painful for him even more so after Mourinho’s comments in the past couple of weeks.
    I actually felt sympathy for him last night and today, now it is drawing to a possible close for him. I admire what he has done in keeping us where we are but feel a little anger that he could have taken us further if he had spent some money on quality players and changed his methods.
    Whether this was down to him or the board is up for debate, I am sure we will find out very soon.

  45. KiyoshiIto

    I said I would not post on here,after Nasri Mouth’s comment about “Drogba having more average seasons than good,whilst at Chelsea.”.
    Well Nasri Mouth,if you want to call me out on that,I’m more than happy to reply back,with your quote(s).

    That aside,today is a sad day/weekend indeed..
    What we are currently witnessing is a megalomaniac in terminal decline.A very sad day.

    When a young upstart,labels you a “specialist in failure”,refuses to to do the customary end of whistle match hand shake.

    A young upstart,that traversed Europe,trailblazing..Picking up 2 CL Cups along the way,a multitude of titles to boot..19+
    Having left you to try and make available the tools available for you, to at least attempt to make a fight,of the EPL,or the available trophies at your disposal..i.e. FAC,EPL,CC..

    Nope you cocked a snoop at the so-called minor trophies in your eyes,i.e..FAC,it was beneath you.In fact you mentioned in one press conference,the objective:-


    Now “The Special One”,or maybe “The Prodigal Son “,having returned,with almost 19 trophies under his belt,left you as his b**ch,& returned to maintain the status quo.

    In that time since “The Special One” had left,you had not acquired one trophy.

    But what you gave us,was a revised version,of what a trophy was…
    In fact,if I’m not mistaken..You labelled “4th a Trophy”…

    Unheard of in any high level of elite sport..Trying telling that to,the
    “Mayweather’s” of Boxing,trying telling that to the “Roger Federer’s “of the
    Tennis world.

    Trying telling that to the LeBron James’s of the Basketball world,or even the Ronaldo’s of the Football world..

    It just would not compute,in their mindsets..

    Too march into war,with a defeatist mentality at worst,& a damage limitation exercise at best,when faced with opposition that questions your resolve,tactics,motivation & mental strength.

    Asks immense questions of you as a Commander-In-Chief..As a General,as a Manager…

    This is not a time to gloat,but a time of immense sadness…

    Even though,I was one of Wenger’s biggest critic’s over the past 6 years,I saw the cracks in the man,who had exploited the vacuum of power.
    Shovelled it up his nose,like a 2 bit street crack “lady of the night” in need of her daily fix..

    Once he got going,after David Dein left,there was no stopping him..

    Like a dictator,punch drunk on power,he left a trail of a questionable legacy,that in some quarters might be described as great,in others a mixture of bitter-sweet memories,in other quarters,a very sour taste that will long linger on.

    I might add,from a personal perspective,his first 7 years were good,were mesmerising in some respects..But I always felt,he could do more..

    He could push on..He could do back2back titles,he could win a CL Cup,he could do so much more,what with the players he had at his disposal at the early part of his reign..i.e.Henry,Bergkamp,Viera,Cole,Pires..

    They were a sight to behold,never in all my years up till that time,had I witnessed such mesmerising football..Pace,power & intricate triangles,along with movement..Those days of Viera & Bergkamp(my fav players),Pires,Freddie..

    Oooh,Ooh La La…Those were the days..Not any more..Just memories of what was& not what currently is..

    When you have “The Special One”,label you openly “A Specialist in Failure”,it’s hard to disagree with him..Given the fact he left you almost 7 years ago,trailblazing Europe,amassing almost 19 trophies or more,only to come back & resume normal service & more or less batter you into submission.

    In b/w Arsene,in the time that Jose left,you had won nothing.

    Your contempt for trophies bar,the CL &EPL left many a man wondering..Maybe you had a grand master plan to conquer Europe…

    You in fact stated in one of the conferences,your priorities in terms of winning trophies,or at least challenging,as far back as 2010.


    To be fair,in the last 4 years,let alone 9 years,you have won none of them.
    Whilst blaming every man & sundry..The Specialist One,has trail blazed
    Europe in the last 7 years,hauling with trophies to add to his CV,where as your’s reads zilch,zero,nought,for the latter part of your reign.

    Hopefully this will be the start of a new era.A Kloppesque type signing in the making..A man with vision,passion,motivation& mental strength.

    Time to step aside Arsene..Thanks for the first seven years..

    Sad times fellow Gooners..Sad times..


  46. Keyser

    Arsenal1886 – The next man has a job on his hand because that’s the situation we’re in, it won’t be because of Wenger, he’d probably have a better shot because of him, I almost can’t be bothered to point any of it out, because do people really care anymore, it’s hard to judge reading the comments on this blog because they’re obviously skewed.

    That’s where Wenger’s failed, fans don’t care about consistentcy, or keeping the club afloat or the books balanced, how many people get upset or celebrate draws ? No-one because it’s all or nothing for us.

    The club had a long term plan in mind, they paid Wenger handsomely for it and after all these years of taking all the shit that comes with it I can imagine him having had enough, that’s all really, he’s 64, he’s been here 18 years, we’ve built a new stadium, the training ground, we’re renegotiated the sponsorship deals, and after 7 years of turning a profit we’ve built a decent chunk of change to work with, plus whatever players you want to keep.

    There is no real debate for me, I honestly don’t get why you can’t see the obvious, we’re supposed to be a club with tradition, a habit of doing things the right way, there was only one reason for them to sell out to two different billionaires and that’s if they invested, share prices have increased, as has our revenue, or the base from which we build from, and they’ve put in nothing, we’ve seen team after team eventually ground down each season as they fight with the odds stacked against them and they’ve sat there and done nothing.

    You simply can’t cast a cynical eye over the past 8 years and then stop short because you think the fault lies with one man, you can’t, but it seems you and soo many others have done so. I can’t really blame you, I just hope your illusions and mine aren’t shattered once he goes.

  47. Keyser

    SDE – During the summer, you posted the same post from Nasri’s Mouth over and over again, listing why he thought we might buy a big name player, you constantly abused him for it and posted it numerous times, when we bought Ozil, you disappeared saying you were off to buy a season ticket in the Bundesliga.

    Seriously mate, don’t be a cunt all your life, the blog’s a bit of a shitfest at the moment and while you’re a troll, you’re one of the smarter ones, don’t fuck it up.

  48. Zeus


    Glad you pointed out that Wenger has been handsomely compensated for having his reputation dragged through the mud.

    As for doing things the right way, that is using the resources available to the club to compete.

    I can’t be arsed to go over Arsene’s negligible decision making, but fucking hell….giroud as you sole striker for 2 seasons running?

    Is he fucking kidding me?!

  49. Dark Hei

    Still Pedro, I think you need to give Wenger some credit in the dignity department. He isn’t signing because he has lost some credibility with himself. I don’t think he cares what others think, but end of the day he is not signing because he is asking himself the same question that everyone is posting.

    Even if we make top 4 and FA Cup, he might not sign on because he knows he hasn’t done enough. And as ESPN puts it, out of touch.

    I think he might go an additional year, if the board ask for time to find a successor. One year with the future wrapped up will be nice., just for nostalgia’s sake.

    No matter what, at least with him, you a guaranteed top 4. And he can still draw players. Furthermore, the board has left it too late to get a replacement at this point in time. I think 1 year, so that a replacement can be sought after, because you need to get a new manager together with the players he wants, and that is a bundled deal where big $$ needs to be budgeted.

    Just my 2 cents. I think Wenger is still valuable in certain ways but the transition to his next role is important.

  50. follow the money

    Me in 2007; “Arsenal will never win anything with a keeper like Almunia” (who I might add, is now playing for that powerhouse___I don’t even know!)

    Me in 2013; “Arsenal will never win anything with a striker like Giroud”

    I don’t bring this up to prove I am right etc I only post it in response to those who are pleading for patience and to show that the predicament we find ourselves in is nothing new. Wenger has achieved consistency, we have to give him that. But it’s consistency of 4th place and humiliations against teams above us in the table and in any game of significance. It’s not enough for me and hasn’t been for years. It’s not a knee jerk reaction from this fan, at all

    I borrowed the following from a poster at Online Gooner: “Psychologically, Arsenal have never recovered from the twin blows in spring 2008” I don’t think they ever recovered from losing the European Cup final. Same with Leeds in the mid seventies. Almost made it, but from that point onwards in slow decline. The season has been defined by six defeats, four of them away at United, City, Chelsea and Liverpool and the two home defeats to Dortmund and Bayern. Had they drawn these games, Arsenal would still be chasing the big trophies, but when it comes to the crunch, they just can’t show the resolve to get a result. The thing is that this isn’t new to Arsenal under Wenger. 1999 saw them blow the cup at Villa Park abd the league at Elland Road, 2000 Copenhagen, 2001 losing late on to Liverpool and 2003 when they threw the title away from a winning position. Even in 2004 they went out of the cups all too easily to Chelsea and Man U in less than a week and but for 45 minutes of brilliance from Henry against Liverpool the invincibles may not have even won the league. Looking back over Wenger’s reign, Arsenal have lost far too many games that mattered even when they were arguably the best team in the land and possibly the best in Europe (2002-2004). It’s time for a change.

  51. follow the money

    Almunia is playing for Watford! That’s right. The guy who Wenger entrusted our goalkeeping duties to for years I might add is playing for that giant of world football Watford. Almunia seems like a decent fellow and I don’t want to single him out but I would like a reasoned explanation from a Wengerite as to why Wenger persisted with him for years? How can any top club pretend to be trying to win cups and titles and have a keeper of that quality in goal? Same will be said of Giroud soon enough

  52. Thank you and goodnight

    As much as the last 5-6 year Wenger has pissed me off, of course it will be a little sad if he’s going. But the reality is it should of been years ago with his legendary status intact. People like keyser go on about the money as though we are Fucking stupid and don’t realise the wealth of shitty and the chavs. But money doesn’t excuse the tactical ineptitude, money doesn’t excuse persevering with players like djourou, senderos, squillaci, Santos etc. Money doesn’t make Almunia captain. So many good keepers have moved to other clubs over last 8 years and we are left with flappy and scez. I mean Christ we are begging for scez to be dropped and replaced by flappy FFS. So while it is sad it is long long overdue.
    But I’m not letting the board off Scott free either. Their has been not one of them man enough to pull him aside over last few years and help him. They are all riding the gravy train and their attitude is, fuck trophies give us the money. The fact they are begging him to stay when it is obvious to everyone he is shot, proves they only have their interests at heart. If Wenger is leaving at the end of the season, I hope the yank Bastards fuck off as well. They have let Arsène down, and they’ve let the fans of this great club down too. I don’t want a silent owner, I want one with visions and goals.

    To my fellow American gooners that dig at yanks was aimed at that slimy rat kroenke and I hope I haven’t offended you.

  53. KiyoshiIto

    KeyserMarch 24, 2014 02:06:41
    SDE – During the summer, you posted the same post from Nasri’s Mouth over and over again, listing why he thought we might buy a big name player, you constantly abused him for it and posted it numerous times, when we bought Ozil, you disappeared saying you were off to buy a season ticket in the Bundesliga.

    For all your protestations & pro-wenger stance…?Where is your season ticket for Arsene FC?

    You certainly talk a good game,do you back it up with your wallet?
    Given you are so pro-wenger?Simple yes/no will do?

    You talk the talk,do you really walk the talk,in real life-honestly???!!

    & don’t expect a reply..Some of us,have a life&commitments..

  54. Jeff

    The words above feel like the closing statements from the defence and the prosecution. Keyser makes some valid points but to me the inadequacies posited by Follow and TYAG are also very true and consistent with the opinion of not just this blog but a growing number of football commentators.

    Yes, we can definitely put a fair chunk of the blame on the board and owner but this isn’t just about money. There are a lot of other things that Wenger could have done differently which would have acquitted him hands down – but he chose to follow his own path even though it kept leading us no where and that my friends is the main accusation. Persistent failure to act in window after window and the insatiable trust he placed in players that consistently let him down. His loyalty and personal admiration for such players seems to override his duty to the fans. You need look no further than the insane wage policy as proof for this. We came second every time.

    The second accusation from which it is hard to escape is his technical handling of games. There are things he’s done that no coach worth his salt would have done but for whatever reason, he kept on doing them and the more those methods failed, the more he wanted to prove he was right and carried on. That sort of freedom given to a manager is admirable but it is also very dangerous. This leads me on to the third accusation which comes under the bracket of abusing one’s power.

    We have heard so many times phrases like “50,000 substitutions” and “who has won the FA cup more”. These are not just words spurted out in a moment of anger. They are laden with conceit from a man with little or no humility when it comes to football matters. As they say, pride always goes before a fall and this is where he finds himself today.

    If Wenger retires, there is absolutely no doubt in my mind that he will be doing the honourable thing and he goes with the blessing and admiration of an entire generation of fans and supporters from all over the world and I’m sure they’d want to wish him the very best in whatever he decides to do next.

    If this was a leaving card, that’s what I’d put on it.

  55. Hitman49

    If you all think he’s gone think again !

    He hasn’t done the decent thing in the past 6 years why change now?, you all forget he’s still the boards cash cow !

  56. Thank you and goodnight

    Again mate spot on. As you said we all know we’re poor in comparison to some, but that’s no excuse for a lot of his mistakes.
    Take Saturdays game for example, before the game even kicked off there was a lot of bloggers on here who were dismayed with the team selection and could see what was coming, yet the man paid 8 million a year couldn’t see it. Just saying oops sorry about that doesn’t cut it.

  57. Jeff


    We’re beyond apologies though aren’t we? How many times is he or the players going apologise before it becomes boring and frankly a bit embarrassing? We had the 8:2 defeat and he tried to atone for it by refunding the away fans’ costs.

    Then, in this very season, we’ve had three massive humiliations at the hands of our immediate rivals. There are no words that can mitigate, explain or atone for it other than profound incompetence. It isn’t just the players’ fault. Yes they underperform but why do they do it? The same set of players that can go to Bayern and draw 1:1 cannot lose 6:3 to City, 5:1 to Liverpool and 6:0 to Chelsea. It just isn’t possible unless there is something fundamentally wrong with the way they are managed, coached and prepared.

    These aberrations are beginning to happen all too often and cannot be put down to just “accidents”, “bad luck” or “one-offs”. If they are not addressed, (and the only way I see it is a change in management), the frequency of it will increase. Do you remember Reading? We let in 4 goals in the first half. They weren’t even a big side. This simply does not happen to managers of top clubs – only Arsenal seems to suffer from these “anomalies”. I’m sorry but the memories are just too painful.

  58. Thank you and goodnight

    Was it Wenger who said he plans his substitutions on the Thursday? I think it was the season the 50,000 sub comments was made?

  59. Pedro

    We lose, and what a surprise, KiyoshiIto is here…

    Well I’ll be damned. Someone more part time that Abou Diaby.

    ‘Three years ago I said this would happen, here is a quote where you were wrong once’

    Nice one.

  60. Gladwyn

    I find it hard to believe that there are people who still think it wasn’t Wenger’s fault entirely. IT IS, IT IS!!!!

    Surely similar results against the top 3 speaks volume of the way Wenger prepares his team for games of this stature. You can’t be prepared to fail each time you play the top 3, Liverpool wasn’t even counted top 3 before we played them at Anfield. Some posters on here come with a detailed analysis of finances,past acheivements, tactics against a sunderland side to claim we are a top side with a top manager and be careful what you wish for nonsense. Reeks of delusion.

    As Pedro put we can only hope he doesnt sign. However, hope is our only hope innit??

  61. Jeff

    I put this up yesterday as well but I it’s worth putting it up again. Our record against top four sides in the last five seasons is atrocious. It’s actually unbelievable how low we have sunk against the top sides.


  62. Crusaderrabbit

    I think it will say a lot about Wenger as a man as to what he decides to do now. He has the opportunity to walk away from the club, with hopefully a trophy, with his head held high and with the admiration of the fans and most of the footballing world. If he stays it will be for completely the wrong reasons – his stupid pride and greed for more money. As Pedro pointed out he’s near pensionable age – why would he carry on, how much money does he need, he wouldn’t be short of offers!

    Even the most pro AKB would have to concede this is by far the best opportunity to leave for both himself and the club. I want him to leave as have lost faith in him as a manager, but if he stays now I will have lost faith in him as a human being

  63. Jeff


    You have your ear to the ground closer than most of us; what do you think about these retirement rumours? Any truth in it or are we being led up the garden path yet again?

  64. Pablitoi

    A very balanced piece from someone whom I gave not always agreed with, even though, unlike many on this blog, I have always enjoyed his opinions , which have always been informed and committed to the Gunner’s cause. In short, he has not been anti-Wenger for the wrong reasons, but because he saw what we all saw saturday as symptomatic of the deeper problems with Arsene’s methods and choices. Chelsea were, despite score, not that good, but we were woeful from start to finish, tactically, and therefore individually. Minimal pressing? Ball given away., or passes intercepted. long ball? Defence stretched because full backs are haring up the flanks. Quick ball exchange? Not executed because of the pressing and the lack of control by people like the Ox , Djourou, and Podolski, and even, maybe especially Santi. Crosses and/or long balls into Djourou? Forget about it, as two, sometimes three centre halfs are there to snuff it out. One could go on and on– about Arteta’s slowness in closing down space and getting across to cover; Djourou’s ponderous, pathological slowness that only works when he’s holding up for players like Walcott; and when are Anyway, as someone who has always supported Wenger, I have to accept that creeping delusionment is always below the surface, where cracks have appeared for so long that we have gotten used to covering for them, but have been part of the problem in. It calling them: the occasional (and it does happen– Dortmund away, Napoli at home, the first Liverpool game, when they were yet to come into their own; and the first 20 minutes of Bayern, when we can always ask, what if Ozil had scored?) it is these moments that we see glimmers, but they are not sustainable, and have all proved to be our undoing against the bigger and sometimes more determined clubs ( like Stoke).
    One of the many things that I took from the nightmare on Saturday was that it was easy, after the fact of course, that it was coming, but also the humiliation was the club’s but most especially Arsene’s. He needs that cup to go out, but he needs to go. A man of such intelligence, dignity and pride does not need any more humiliations to be remembered as yesterday’s man, so out of touch with so many things. The idea that there is no one to replacement is indeed a cop out. Let’s get into Europe ( the CL, that is) again and worry about that later. Finishing above Spurs for the nth. time is not enough to have periodic repetitions of this.