Two choices for Arsene: Leave now or cede power and collaborate

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Capture

Another big game. Another flunked test. Arsenal are now in serious jeopardy of losing out on 4th place.

We knew what Everton’s game plan was going to be. Arsene Wenger didn’t. They came at us with the objective of destroying us in the first half an hour, and sure enough, that’s what they did.

They were mentally prepared, tactically aware, drilled and packed with energy.

Comments like, ‘they wanted it more’, don’t really work for me. All footballers want to win. That extra zip those players had over ours is baked into the Everton set up. They’ve been built to play at that tempo. Last week, they would have been trained so they could play at that pace. No training ground beasting for those guys. It showed as well, they were ferocious in the way they picked off our sorry group of players.

We had nothing to offer the game. We had no shape and no awareness of what was going on. Our defending was shambolic, our reaction was pathetic and we caved to a better team who have a far better manager.

… and that’s it people. Martinez, at the moment, is a better manager than Arsene Wenger. Our relic of leader has no idea what’s going on. He’s utterly clueless. He can’t see what’s coming because he doesn’t check. He can’t react to what’s going on because he’s a creature of habit (waiting until the 65th minute to change the game was embarrassing). He can’t win against top sides these days because at the highest level, it’s about the manager and the marginal gains he offers you.

On our travels this year against the top 5 sides, we’re 20-4 down.

Take a moment. Digest that figure. Now ask yourself this, how can we possibly sign Arsene Wenger up for another two years? How can anyone defend the stagnation? How can Arsenal football club allow him to sign up to the new deal?

He has to go. In fact, if he loses against Wigan, he might decide to leave. Really though, the FA Cup isn’t sugar coating anything. The reality here is that Arsene has taken us from top of the league in February to fighting for our lives for Champions League football. Harry Redknapp was sacked for less. Where is the quality control here?

Who is going to say, ‘Arsene, enough is enough’…

Player reaction

What will be interesting is the reaction from the players. Are they sick of the b*llshit? Are they sick of having no game plan? I know for a fact the players bemoan the lack of planning behind the scenes. Will the players fight for the manager next week against Wigan, or will they bend over? How can they motivate themselves to play for someone who doesn’t know what he’s doing.

… and look, players are like fans. They can see what’s going wrong. Did you see Theo’s face when Sky asked him what he thought about signing Ozil? Did you see his face when asked about the surprise in not signing a striker in January? He knows.  Players speak to their pals at Barca and Madrid, they know what goes into prep. They know how meticulous Martinez, Rodgers and Mourninho are. They know that Wenger isn’t going to change. So what are they there fighting for?

What will the reaction look like at Wigan? They’re a Cup winning side. We’re totally deflated and we don’t have enough players to rotate in some enthusiasm. Sometimes, players just cave. It’s not said verbally, you can just see that they’ve given up. I watched Milan players do it earlier in the season against Sassuolo when they lost 4-3. Could that happen to Arsene’s men? Or can they muster something special for a last hurrah?

The Reality

Two more years of stagnation shouldn’t be an option. The second half of the season has felt like watching your dad taking a nicely humoured beating in the pub. You can’t step in either. You know he can’t fight back anymore, he’s trying, still bullish he can overturn it, but simple fact is he’s had it. He doesn’t have to tools to get out of this one. What’s worse is he doesn’t have the pride to walk away.

The press can defend him and tell Arsenal fans they’re ungrateful. They can say things like ‘Arsenal have had injuries that put context against their demise’… and never explore the reasons why we have those injuries. They can complain the players don’t have the bottle, without ever taking time to understand what a nonsensical statement that is when you look at the players we have. They can bemoan the lack of pace and never put that to Wenger And ask why he doesn’t have power in his squad. However, what they can’t ever get away from is that he’s failed another season. Outside of cute quotes and a brand of football that draws sympathetic ‘oh, but at least they try to play the right way’, what have we got in Arsene Wenger nowadays?

Don’t be dumbed down into the harsh realities of what we’re dealing with here. Don’t accept turgid statements like ‘ there weren’t the players’, ‘it’s bad luck’ or ‘the players have let Arsene down’.

Demise and Delusion

Hell, if you want any further indicator of Wenger’s slide into delusion, think about his statement yesterday about hair supplements causing additional injury. What scientific basis did he have for that statement? Who was he talking about? That comment was an absolute sh*t show. Players aren’t taking drugs on the side and they aren’t impacting injuries. He’s looking at the 1% chance over the 90% chance that the reason his players are ruined is because he kills them.

Add this all up and you have incompetence. It’s not purposeful incompetence, it’s incompetence that has degenerated his abilities over the course of ten years. Wenger challenges hair supplements because he knows no better. He overplays because he thinks he knows players and their bodies better than the experts. He doesn’t have a game plan because he doesn’t know how to have one. He doesn’t buy in power because he’s being advised badly. I mean, when is someone going to challenge Wenger’s mindset that you can’t bulk up players because they lose their mobility? Anyone showed him Matic? Does he remember Drogba? Has he seen Yaya Toure? Did he watch Lukaku destroy us? Did he watch our players constantly disposessed by bigger / faster players? When is someone going to sit with Wenger and explain to him that his incredibly poor record against top teams is all about his lack of a match plan. How can a man, so intelligent, not see that if you line up the same way every week, it makes you predictable and easy to play against?

The Choices

So do you give him the chance to rebuild? Does Ivan step in and force change? Can the manager accept he’s being let down by hangers on intent on self preservation? Does Wenger have the bottle and the gumption to have one final last push at trying management 2.0?

It’ll be major upheaval whichever route he takes. We’re already as bad as it gets in modern football. It’s an miracle we managed to sustain a challenge for so long doing things the old fashioned way. It was always going to fall apart though.You can fight toe to toe doing things badly, but at some point, the pressure will tell and you’ll have no fall back mechanism.

My view is that the manager should walk away. My view is that he might just do that. Look at him on the sidelines at Swansea, he didn’t stand up for 65minutes. Yesterday, he hardly stood at all. He just sat there. He looked almost delirious. He doesn’t know what’s going on and no one will be frank with him. He’s built a backroom team around him that doesn’t pride itself on great work. Instead of building a culture of excellence, where you celebrate pushing your department on, he’s built a backroom team that care only about preserving their futures. Having the favour of the manager is about agreeing with him, not about telling him there’s a different way of doing things that might yield 9 extra points a season because we lower our player down time by 8%. We need hungry, young, talented people working all over the club.

To do that, the manager needs to take a back seat. He needs to understand that he can’t be chief scout, financial director, 1st team coach, tactician and the fitness coach. If you can’t be the best, build the best around you. Feed off their enthusiasm. Fuck it, learn something. I’m 29, I work in social marketing (3 years ago), when I started, I did everything (insights, content, community, outreach, planning)… now I do nothing. I have a team of people that wipe the floor with me, all working as specialists within the aforementioned disciplines. I remember the days where you did it all. Now, I’m a relic, thriving off the talent that works for me. Arsene’s job shouldn’t be about being the expert in  it all, it should be about taking that information and turning it into something special. Empower talent and you’ll reap the rewards. Football and business are the same, though football, in general, is struggling to accept the evolution.

This isn’t revolutionary stuff in general. This is how Lyon operated so successfully, this is why Barca are where they are, it’s what they’ve been implementing at Manchester City, it’s the structure David Moyes destroyed at United, it’s the approach Rogers has taken that’s given Liverpool a chance at the title… it’s the way a modern club operates. The manager is the figurehead. He’s there, taking all the expert data and crafting it into a final 11. The department heads don’t fear challenging the manager and kicking things on, because ultimately, departmental excellence is their job and the only person who can sack them is the CEO. This is how all the best clubs work. It’s a collaboration, not a dictatorship. The only fear you have in your job is not being the best you can be. That’s how you kick on a company. That’s how you kick on a football backroom team.

That’s why I’m not sure Arsene has it in him to change. That’s why I’d be game for someone like Steve Bould taking over. I don’t think we need a massive name. Football isn’t that game anymore. We need someone who is young, eager to impress, of the right stature and most importantly, someone Ivan Gazidis has control over.  Bring in Bould, give him a deal and tell him he has the full backing under stipulations. Steve Bould is the right age, he’s a beast of a man but with a very likeable edge. He’s a legend as well, he’s one two Premier Leagues (I think he was here for the second) and two 1st Divisions, countless cups. He knows the club inside out and he’ll no doubt have an opinion about what’s going on. I simply refuse to believe he’s not sitting on the touchlines facepalming inside. The other important aspect about Steve Bould is that firstly, the players all like him and secondly, he’ll have the fans on his side. Barca lost Frank Rijkaard and put in their B team manager. He’s now one of the greatest managers of all time. He left the club and they brought in Villanova who upped it again for the club. You bring in someone internally, they know the politics of the club, they know the players and they’ll have the power to upgrade.

If we go outside the club, you have to look at what Martinez has done and be impressed. He has a vision, he has charisma and he’s delivering a brand of football at Everton I’d love to see at Arsenal. You have other managers like Thomas Tuchel who has a tremendous reputation in Germany for the work he’s doing with Mainz. There’s obviously someone like Klopp who is everyone’s dream. I just worry that he’s a bit crazy and he has some similarities with Wenger. He’s played with a tiny squad this year and he’s suffered some pretty horrendous injuries. Could be a one off, could be something deeper. My issue with an appointment like Klopp is that he’s an ego. He’s been there and done it… could be a masterstroke, could be a disaster. Point is, how much power can the club have over a global superstar manager?

So we are where we are. I don’t think this season has been hugely different to the last four or five. I’ve been putting these arguments up for the best part of 7 years. What changed this year is categorically, all Wenger’s usual fall back excuses were removed. For the first time, he’s been fully accountable. The 10 year wait for money, ironically, has been Wenger’s demise. Wenger had £100m to spend, he didn’t buy a striker, didn’t buy pace or power and then made it even worse by complaining about the existence of the January transfer window. His lack of drive to make the Premiership his this year will be the legacy of this season.

Question is, what does Arsene want his legacy to be? Because he’s killing it. He’ll always be remembered as the man who brought greatness to Arsenal, but will that be tinged with the following comment… ‘but he did go a bit Brian Clough in the end’… Wenger has two choices. Bow out on a cup win and hand over the reins, or cede power and collaboratively build a modern football club for the next manager.

Watching this one pan out will be interesting…

Thoughts in the comments section.

 

782 Responses to “Two choices for Arsene: Leave now or cede power and collaborate”

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  1. Dannyboy

    Where are our resident ‘Super Fans’ KJ and Rev Kev? They have a remarkable ability to just vanish into thin air only to re-appear after a lucky win and accuse everyone else of ‘only coming on when we lose’..

    Embarrassments.

  2. andy1886

    “A real shame. But he’s had a great innings.”

    Lol Pedro, that’s the sort of thing people say when their Grandad dies!

    Thanks for the sympathy N5, I’ve aged exponentially these last five or six years under Wenger, so yes it is his fault the daft old scrote.

  3. SurferX

    ” That’s why I’d be game for someone like Steve Bould taking over. I don’t think we need a massive name.”

    I disagree with this hugely Pedro. Hear me out- I love Bouldy, was always one of my favourite Arsenal songs too (you can be sure he’s not on the regain pills); but is a manager that has limited experience of managerial styles and backroom setups what we need? I mean, he could be the greatest manager the world has ever seen- but Im not sure that is the job facing the next manager. I don’t think bringing success to the club is any longer the most important aspect of the next appointment (yes I know, 9 years without a trophy- but hear me out).

    We have a youth team setup that (we are told) is one of the best in the world- yet is so abject in its ability to produce a stream of players for the first-team. We have a chronic injury record so bad that managers of national teams regularly criticise the club for damaging their players. We have a player recruitment system so inept that the only player it could find in the January transfer window has a broken back. We have a rigid tactical regime in place that is so fundamentally flawed the same mistakes can occur 4 times in a season without any degree of improvement or tactical mitigation. You have made these points continuously- the lack of backroom expertise and subject-matter experts (aka specialists).

    The most important aspect of the next managers role is to help the Board put in place a structure that breeds success rather, rather than conforming to the tried, tested and failed. I think the club desperately needs outside experience to do that- its noted how little football knowledge there is at board level. We have 18 years of conformity to old ideas and principles to shed. For that, we need to be looking for someone that has done exactly that; taking a club with out-dated principles and modernising them.

    Steve Bould may well be the man for the next-but-one appointment, but he has no sort of experience or track record of doing what is needed. Furthermore, I wouldn’t want to task someone that has managerially been associated with the repetitive failure of the Wenger-stagnation years with leading that change in the first place; he’ll get neither the time, patience or respect that he’ll need to do that. I’m not saying he can;t do it; but its incredibly difficult to revolutionise if you are already part of the establishment.

    Out next manager could well fall flat on his face. We could finish mid-table or worse, with no trophies or success. But, if he leads the change of Arsenal from dictatorial bottom-down management to one less reliant on top-down thought leadership and more reliant on departmental excellence, then that is a considerable achievement. Or, in plain English, get someone in who can put in place a structure where it doesn’t really matter who the manager is; the club should be able to improve and evolve with / without them.

  4. Paddy got up

    Pedro
    Great post fella up to the Steve Bould thing.
    This is a bloke who sits there with Nosetrough and offers fuck all but picks up a fat salary just like Pat Rice before him. At least Pat had a loud whistle when calling players for substitute time I.e. 65 min!!

    I posted late last night when people were all saying Klopp or Martinez, that Gazides and Kroenkewould only go for another yes man and therefore the only 2 candidates are Bould or Remi Garde..
    Wenger out is a start but he needs to take the lot with him!
    EIE

  5. Norfolk

    Romford PeleApril 7, 2014 08:30:53
    “He’ll always be remembered as the man who brought greatness to Arsenal, but will that be tinged with the following comment… ‘but he did go a bit Brian Clough in the end’… Wenger has two choices. Bow out on a cup win and hand over the reins, or cede power and collaboratively build a modern football club for the next manager.”Agree man. Brilliant post Pedro. I feel so numb right now.”

    What Cup win ?????

    He needs to go not cede power or collaborate.
    Could you see Napoleon taking a lesser role ?
    If he goes upstairs it will be a disaster of the greatest kind.
    The new manager will be given all the levers but they won’t be connected to anything. I realise that and so would any manager of the right calibre.

    Maybe Stuart Houston would take the job, Klopp wouldn’t.

  6. Bam

    I watched Arsenal yesterday and was dumbfounded. We were beaten by Chelsea (6-0), Man City, Liverpool and now Everton. This clearly suggests that we are unfit to be in the top four of the Premier League and thus unworthy of being in the Champions League. What is happening at Arsenal is a cumulative effect of the failure to address crucial issues over the past 9 to 10 years. All is about Arsene Wenger’s failure. This is a man who is stubborn and prides himself on his past achievements. But this is a modern era that needs flexibility and technical superiority for success. Wenger, as known by other Premiership clubs has no game plan. He will always go out with the players to employ his known, predictable game plan. I feel that was why he couldn’t beat Alex Ferguson from 2007. Same applies to Mourinho. I see him as tactically porous and clueless. Secondly, he doesn’t like spending money on stars, well-known players, who can win trophies for the club. A corollary to this is waiting two days before the end of the transfer window before either buying or not. Besides, some of our players are over-rated and only one or two of them can be selected to be in Chelsea or Man City’s first 11. Take for instance, Olivier Giroud. In pecking order, Giroud cannot be selected as Chelsea or Man City’s third or fourth striker. To be honest, our strike force is the worst in the current top 7. So many other problems abound at Arsenal. My view point is that its time for Arsene Wenger to go and for another manager like Martinez to be appointed. I don’t see us in the top 4 at the end of the season. Even if we eventually make the top 4, it is only about the money, as we only play in the Champions League to make up the number, without any impact yearly. Whether Wenger wins the FA Cup or not, he should just go. 9 or 10 years is more than enough for the fans of a big club to wait before they can feel happy about getting a trophy.

  7. Bam

    I watched Arsenal yesterday and was dumbfounded. We were beaten by Chelsea (6-0), Man City, Liverpool and now Everton. This clearly suggests that we are unfit to be in the top four of the Premier League and thus unworthy of being in the Champions League. What is happening at Arsenal is a cumulative effect of the failure to address crucial issues over the past 9 to 10 years. All is about Arsene Wenger’s failure. This is a man who is stubborn and prides himself on his past achievements. But this is a modern era that needs flexibility and technical superiority for success. Wenger, as known by other Premiership clubs has no game plan. He will always go out with the players to employ his known, predictable game plan. I feel that was why he couldn’t beat Alex Ferguson from 2007. Same applies to Mourinho. I see him as tactically porous and clueless. Secondly, he doesn’t like spending money on stars, well-known players, who can win trophies for the club. A corollary to this is waiting two days before the end of the transfer window before either buying or not. Besides, some of our players are over-rated and only one or two of them can be selected to be in Chelsea or Man City’s first 11. Take for instance, Olivier Giroud. In pecking order, Giroud cannot be selected as Chelsea or Man City’s third or fourth striker. To be honest, our strike force is the worst in the current top 7. So many other problems abound at Arsenal. My view point is that its time for Arsene Wenger to go and for another manager like Martinez to be appointed. I don’t see us in the top 4 at the end of the season. Even if we eventually make the top 4, it is only about the money, as we only play in the Champions League to make up the number, without any impact yearly. Whether Wenger wins the FA Cup or not, he should just go. 9 or 10 years is more than enough for the fans of a big club to wait before they can feel happy about getting a trophy.

  8. Dannyboy

    ‘That said, I still think a new manager could maybe extract some more out of certain players than Wenger is doing currently.’

    I’ve been trying to push this one for a while. We certainly have a better crop of players than Liverpool apart from Suarez/Sturridge and Coutinho. They just have a much better manager.

    Look at the fact we get ripped apart by Chelsea and lesser teams only lose by 2 or 3.. No-one seriously believes those teams have better players?

  9. Romford Pele

    “This is a bloke who sits there with Nosetrough and offers fuck all but picks up a fat salary just like Pat Rice before him”

    This is based on nothing. You have zero evidence to back it up either so don’t go about spouting nonsense.

  10. bergkamplegend

    Dannyboy : “Where are our resident ‘Super Fans’ KJ and Rev Kev? ”

    They are actually trying to console arsène…
    By doing what ? That’s not our business anyway.

  11. Al

    Wenger is playing a selfish game. He probably wants to leave and knows his time is up. But he wants to leave with a trophy or trophies so his legacy stays in tact.

    He knows currently his legacy is massively tarnished…not by the fact that he hasn’t won anything but by the fact the fans have turned on him, the booing the screams to spend money , booing of substitution etc.

    Its simple…we should start looking now for the new manager….my choice is get Frank De Boer tied up, see if he can come at end of season…if yes give wenger his send off last game of the season.

  12. Guns of brixton

    My only issue with bouldy is lack of experince and lack of pulling power for new players.
    AW has great flaws but he attracts (-ed) good players, and trait needed for a manager no doubt, i would try for klopp despite the ego.

  13. Dissenter

    Please don’t mention Stevie Bould for consideration as manager.
    Assistant managers who don’t have the balls to leave aren’t worth a damn thing.
    If Wenger is perplexed, then what do you make of Bould. Wenger is 64 years old, Bould is a younger man. He should be patrolling the sidelines and reminding players who they play for. He sits there all game quiet and dour faced, like he’s afraid of losing his job.

    Bould is a trainer. He’s not a manager calibre. We’ll need to take a risk to move forward. An outsider to shake up the bronze statues we have in the board will be a way to start.

  14. Ashwin Gunner

    Here are my thoughts

    1) Wenger has no clue what is going on . I mean he doesnt have a plan B. Not to mention that he has a Plan A at the first place. He has lost it. He thinks the other teams cant decode his style of Play. Well Mr Wenger. its not the case. IN ARSENAL under YOU, we have a shit backroom team of experts who you dont take advice from. but in other clubs they have managers who take advice from their experts and have so much information and data that they even know what you wear on matchday.

    2) Players dont trust Wenger. Neither they are scared of him. They have understood the fact that Wenger doesn;t offer anything extra. and they don;t want to fight.
    3) Ivan has to step in and change the way things are working. No more bullshit. Wenger has to leave. Irrespective of whether we win the FA cup or not. This season has had the hint of us winning the League. Now we are down to fighting for 4th as usual.

    I want Wenger to deliver FA cup and 4th place and just leave. We already have put up a Bronze statue of you. So stop waiting for the oppurtune moment and leave now with what ever dignity you have. The more you stay the more you are spoiling your own image.

  15. gbade

    As it stands, Wenger has just leaving the club entirely as the only option. No takl of ceding power or moving up the ladder as Director or some other role. It is clear he is past his prime, a relic from old days of football, and killing the very soul of the club.

    The sooner he leaves, the better.

  16. Barloo

    Grow some balls Ivan Gazidis and earn your money for once. Replace Wenger now or at the end of the season. If you fail to do that you should go to !!

  17. N5

    Dannyboy Kj is on his holiday mate. He’s a good fella as well regardless of his stance on Wenger. You should save the embarresment comment for the posters like DanC.

  18. Pedro

    Dissenter, it’s not blind faith.

    He’s come into a club with no commercial team and turned us into a monster with some serious cash flow now.

    Also, I’ve met him. Challenged him and liked what he’s had to say. I think he’ll prove his worth post Wenger.

    Comments like, ‘he’s not a football man’ are total bollocks and the sort of thing Arsene would say. You don’t need to be a football man to run a football club. If anything, it helps if you’re not.

    Surfer, get what you’re saying. But I think the challenge is less about the man fronting it, more that Ivan has to make sure he staffs up the areas we’re lacking in properly. Also, empowering those people. He must know how other clubs operate, there’s enough text on it in some really great books.

    Surfer, I think Bould is the right person because he’d need help. He’d be Ivan’s man. The CEO goes out and builds the departments, just like the guy at Southampton did. Interview people properly, make the person who runs the department contracted to the club, not the manager. Instil excellence.

    We’re the 4th biggest club in the world, we can attract the right talent. We can bring in people to help. Look at Liverpool and what Rodgers has done. I think the head of fitness at Liverpool was fired by AVB? We can poach staff from other clubs doing great things and get them to lay out the infrastructure. Go to Southampton, find out who there man is and steal him.

    Bould is young enough and hungry enough to make it work.

    I really think the cunting he gets is unfair considering what we know about Wenger.

  19. PieAFC

    It’s becoming a sad state of affairs. I really woulf like some news from the club, IG to come out and at least make an announcement, are the board behind him or not.

    The silence is ridiculous. Settle the fans, settle the team before what could be potentially a massive game, which could go both ways.

    Wigan are playing us the best time they could of hoped for.

  20. Paddy got up

    Romford
    Zero evidence you say?

    Who’s next to Wenger every game- Bould
    Does he actively get involved with any part of the game play- no
    Does he leave his seat- no
    Does he get a fat salary- yes

    Or is he not allowed to as Wenger has total control and won’t let a 6ft 4 bloke stand and give instructions?? If so then I’d hardly say he’s got the balls to be manager material!!
    Enough evidence Mr Poirot?

  21. jwl

    Martinez understands training, fitness. Wigan would always finish season playing well and just manage to stay up for another season, now he’s at everton with better players and they are finishing strong again – 6 wins on trot now? – and that’s important. Martinez is not fergie but manu seemed to get their losses and draws over with in first half of season and then were relentless in second half with many wins.

  22. N5

    PieAFC, it’s a dodgy one, Ivan can’t come out and say we are getting rid of Wenger, especially before a big game like Saturday and he can’t come out and say he has our full backing in case of a supporter revolt! so for the time being silence really is his only option.

  23. Jeff

    I think Bould as an interim manager would give both him and Arsenal a chance to assess his abilities with a view to continuing if we are successful. I for one wouldn’t mind giving him a chance – in fact I’d positively welcome it today if it were possible. However I think Arsene should see out the rest of his tenure and then leave gracefully in May regardless of our results between now and then.

    It is obvious that something has died inside him and it really is time to let go.

  24. JamesH

    Pedro, if Bould is not on a big salary then not sure what he has go to lose. One interview to you or the media in the last year exposing the scale of mismanagement and how he has tried to change matters quietly and internally with no success would have empowered him.

  25. N5

    @Paddy got up, did you see Pedro’s comment RE Bould? I think it was spot on! I’ll copy/paste it and see what you think.

    Pedro: Bould is a man with a mortgage and kids… he’s not on a fat salary.

    In practice, coming in and cunting the manager sounds like a good idea, the reality is that in a culture of ass kissing, he can’t.

    Loses his job, where is he going to get one as good?

  26. DUIFG

    Was quite a marked difference when rambo came on that he was making runs, being good off the ball. why is that so difficult, he isnt even blessed with silly pace but it gave us options.

  27. Romford Pele

    “Does he actively get involved with any part of the game play- no
    Does he leave his seat- no
    Does he get a fat salary- yes”

    Does he get involved during games? Yes
    Does he leave his seat? Yes

    The amount of times i’ve seen him at the Emirates shouting stuff from the touchlines…. But that’s not even the point anyway. You don’t really know what parameters he’s working within. I say again, you’re making assumptions based on nothing.

    Anyway, I wasn’t even advocating him as manager though he has a very good track record of the youngsters. He was the one managing the U18s when they last won the Youth Cup in 2009. Whether he wants to manage is a different question entirely but loads of the players, especially the young ones have come out and said how he has a very up an at ’em approach.

  28. Carts

    Installing Bould at the helm could well be a step to far. Like previously stated he’ll face an up hill battle of assembling a team. Wenger’s long overdue presence at Arsenal has had a nostalgic affect on everyone around him.

    Ideally, gutting the management structure from top to bottom would be more beneficial than installing stalwarts in his place.

    But let’s be honest, that’s not going to happen. Gazidis isn’t going anywhere- he’s the highest paid CEO in the EPL, and he can’t even convince Wenger to buy Tesco Finest bread for the fucking canteen let alone a proper fucking striker.

    Best case scenario: Wenger cedes power and hopefully calls it a day. We get a Martinez-like figure – young, hungry, with fresh ideas – to come in a seemelessly form a brilliant understanding with Gazidis

  29. Romford Pele

    “One interview to you or the media in the last year exposing the scale of mismanagement and how he has tried to change matters quietly and internally with no success would have empowered him”

    At the expense of losing his job? He’s an employee, he still has rules to abide by. That’s just silly and a very emotive reaction really.

  30. DUIFG

    Was quite a marked difference when rambo came on that he was making runs, being good off the ball. why is that so difficult, he isnt even blessed with silly pace but it gave us options.

    we can never again become so predictable.

  31. TitsMcgee

    Can you imagine the zoo that will occur if we don’t win the FA Cup?

    It’ll be like Thunderdome from the Mad Max movies.

    The sad part is even though we are all starved for a trophy an FA Cup victory probably saves Wenger and “allows” him to sign that extension if he hasn’t already.

    Kinda of like popping champagne last year when we eeked 4th or dancing in the streets when we signed Ozil.

    He knows how to appease the masses and most Arsenal fans are so starved they’ll be happy with anything.

  32. Romford Pele

    “Wigan would always finish season playing well and just manage to stay up for another season”

    Apart from last season when they went down.

    Not that i’m criticising Martinez too much but he’s built on very solid foundations which Moyes established. Moyes made Everton very hard to break down and was very good in the defensive aspect. Martinez has come in and has not had to worry about that too much. He had a dreadful defence at Wigan which he didn’t really seem to address. I like him but let’s not go into overdrive with the hype.

  33. Uk Bubbler

    Numb is the word some are using today. national Numb day to go along with groundhog day. 2.0 down and he does nothing to change it. play 2 up top something 7.5 mil a year. I think that contract has already been signed.

    After nearly 35 year of support I am getting very close to turning off the light until he goes. How anyone can defend him is beyond me.

  34. Zoran

    What are those mad thoughts about Bould?

    You must be all joking. An assistant appointed by Wenger is nothing that will bring us further. No balls, no experience as manager and after two years on the bank beside ( and listening only the wanker), to get strait the job at one of England’s biggest clubs?
    No thank you.
    First option Martinez, second option Klopp and last option Simeone.
    Proven managers please, not beginners for our club.

  35. SurferX

    @Pedro

    I think the flaw in that thinking is that you assume that Ivan G has the required knowledge to help build those departments; to identify the areas that need rebuilding from those that just need tweaking. And to identify the characteristics in those individuals selected for the task. That is neither not his forte, background or remit- he is essentially an administrator, co-ordinator and communicator. You are describing something closer to a Director of Football’s role- but he has no experience of this whatsoever.

    What makes you think the current Board / Ivan G can identify the areas in need of improvement? The is some anecdotal evidence that they realise things need to change (look at the U16 & U18 changes.. surprised you’ve not blogged on this yet); but if they haven’t identified that something is up with (say) the injury record after 8 years, why now?

    Putting this argument on its head, how would you expect Bould to make some of the ruthless decisions needed. ‘Neil, Gerry, Tony’, I know you have been with us for 15+ years, but we need to bring in experts in our fields that can help us change course. And what happens if things go badly for Bould at the start? Do you think he’ll get the time and patience from the fans and the board if we struggle initially? Which is more likely than unlikely I would suggest.

    I do agree with everything you are saying (in the context of accountability to the club rather than the manager), but transition itself is something that needs to be managed. I do not see anyone capable at the club that has performed that role before; or has the relevant breadth of football expertise to look to identify those areas in need of change or who should lead them.

  36. Al

    Every arsenal fan and most pundits see what is wrong with the current team but our manager either does not or does but thinks its good enough.

    The issues we have are easily fixed but we have a manager reluctant to change

  37. Pedro

    Paddy / James, you’re really barking up the wrong tree on this one.

    I promise you. It’s not Bould’s fault.

  38. Jeff

    Also, I think there is a real chance if Wenger walks at the end of the season that the board will install Bould as the new manager. Why do I say that? Because they have absolutely no experience at appointing anyone external. We’ve had the same manager for 17 years – would the board know who to contact, what phone calls to make, which agents to talk to? Considering how our player transfers have been handled, they could be looking at the easy option of promoting from within and waiting to see what happens.

    I believe this to be a real possibility but only if Wenger walks at the end of this season.

  39. hornstreet

    Pedro, one of your best ever, with one disagreement – the appointment of Steve Bould. That’s a Bruce Rioch waiting to happen. Add in Brian Kidd, Steve McLaren, and you name it. We have to have a manager with some style and class that needs to “step up”. And, lets be honest, the defensive stability that Bouldy brought to the side in the early part of the season has meant nothing against the Big Teams.

    Its above my pay grade to suggest who should come in, but I can’t help thinking that if we win the FA Cup he’ll still be there for another two seasons, and if he doesn’t then it might be bye-bye. Ivan can ensure that there is no loss of face by him becoming a Director of Football or some such.

    There is still the intriguing “easy run in” too, to perhaps make us look a bit more impressive in position terms than we deserve…

    My thought would be to kick Wenger upstairs, keeping the AKB’s happy, and

  40. Dannyboy

    Lets not forget that Klopp took his old side to relegation but we would still love him. Martinez has a lot of credibility with me despite Wigan going down.

  41. PieAFC

    N5 I totally agree.

    Just right we look in such a mess not just on the playing field its becoming very comical. We are becoming a laughing stock in the media and between fans, we used to be the envy.

    I have always thought IG has been reined in by SK and has bounderies to work within with regards to Wenger. We all know Wenger picked IG, doesnt mean he isn’t andddoesn’t want to be successful in his owm role?

    Change needs to happen, happen quick. I just hope by saturday the players play for themselves just as much for the club and the fans!

    Just thinking that first goal, how important it will be.

    Great post btw pedro. Nailed on.

  42. leon

    was not suprised at all by the result.i realy dont see this as a complicated issue at all,the simple fact wenger is trying get this team playing barc and its not working because this not lag liga this prem and this legue every thing is played at much higher tempo.this team has no width or real pace and high energy type players with exception chamberlain and rambo.i dont believe for second that liverpool have better defenders than arsenal but they have runners players have the abaility run up down the pitch with extremly amount of pace and track back help in defence,that what chelsea have tons pace movement and power,liverpool have lots pace and movement,man city pace power movement,everton pace movement energy all this teams some this does not. this does not have any real natural wingers in the team except chaimberlain,ramsey risicky,cazorla,ozil,wilshire are all passes linkup players but there not pacy high energy type player so not much width.and up front once again no pace or movement.

    i feel had arsenal this same fixtures at the beginning of the season they much further down the table.

  43. Romford Pele

    “Also, I think there is a real chance if Wenger walks at the end of the season that the board will install Bould as the new manager. Why do I say that? Because they have absolutely no experience at appointing anyone external. We’ve had the same manager for 17 years – would the board know who to contact, what phone calls to make, which agents to talk to? Considering how our player transfers have been handled, they could be looking at the easy option of promoting from within and waiting to see what happens.”

    It’s a possibility, but like I said earlier, who’s to say he wants the job earlier. I remember when Wenger was banned for a few games in the CL and he described taking charge of matters as a bit of a “headache”.

    Maybe you’re right but considering he had to be fully persuaded to take on the job of assistant manager, i’m not convinced. That said, I do like him, though he’d be about 4/5 on my list of candidates.

  44. Romford Pele

    “We’d have to pay Everton a shit load in compensation to land Martinez, even if he is tempted by a move.”

    Exactly.

  45. Dissenter

    The assistant manager should compliment the manager. It should be a good cop bad-cop routine. Stevie Bould comes across as a a younger Pat Rice. Loyal, servile and quiet. He’s a company man.
    Our problems are far greater than Wenger. We need an outsider to shake things up.

    “Bould is a man with a mortgage and kids… he’s not on a fat salary.”
    Hmmmm, not…quite true. He was a successful footballer who has to be on a fat salary, 500-750k annual as assistant manager.
    Unless he’s on his 5th divorce or paying child support for 10 kids out if wedlock, he should be fine.

  46. N5

    @Romford Pele: What did you think of Martinez changing his teams shape yesterday and using different build up channels to score their goals.

    He put a third person forward and the commentators were lapping up the way Lukaku’s goal was scored and credited all of it to Martinez changing his approach specifically for Arsenal and were saying how a club like Arsenal would be where he should be aiming to manage now? What’s your thoughts on that, do you think it’s to early to tell and he is flavour of the month or do you think he’s the real deal?

  47. JamesH

    Romford

    Lets agree to disagree, I stand by my opinion. If Bould has any confidence in his ability he knows he would get another job. Silly and emotional as I may be – behave!

  48. B

    @Pedro, great post!!!

    Unfortunately, there is an not very sexy third option, he signs a new contract and continues as before. I consider it the most likely scenario and nobody within the club will be strong enough to force him to go. So two more years of this…

  49. Carts

    “We’d have to pay Everton a shit load in compensation to land Martinez, even if he is tempted by a move.”

    £5m, £10m..I count imagine that figure surpassing £5m in all honesty. Even so, paying compensation for managers seems to be the in-thing nowadays.

    £130m in the bank; bitch we rich, yo!

  50. Paddy got up

    James H
    Cheers fella!
    So let’s get this right he ain’t happy with what’s going on but can’t say anything in case he loses his job?

    And do we suppose that the players know this is the case? They could all be witnesses when Bould takes out his employment tribunal claim!!!
    Just think about what’s being said here a moment. We are supporting a bloke who is complicit to the problems that we are posting about day in day out because he needs the job???
    James H your comment is on the money..
    Now I’m not saying he isn’t a good bloke or potential coach, but anything that connects us to Wenger cannot be the way forward and Bould like it or not is tagged to the current set up as he’s the assistant manager!!

  51. paul mc daid

    Steve Bould,Another Pathetic Yes Man,its because of wimps like him that we are in this position,has never been a good coach at any level,cheating the club.

  52. Jeff

    Romford,

    I think Bould tried to give a “political” answer when he was asked about taking over when Wenger was banned from the touchline. He said “it was a bit of a headache” but I don’t think that is enough evidence to suggest he would refuse the job outright if it was offered. It would be an honour and I think he would jump at the chance. Massive challenge though – and that goes for whoever takes over.

  53. Gooner 72

    Two moments summed up the performance yesterday for me.

    1) Giroud’s lack of pace in chasing down a bad back pass – 60-40 in his favour and didn’t make it. Ball goes right down the other end and bang, 1-0 Everton.

    2) Arteta getting beasted by Barkley, yet no team mates jump in to give him a hand. Left on the floor. No team spirit. Can you imagine Viera letting that kind shit go down??

    Wenger out.

  54. bergkamplegend

    To be honest, the worst things that I’ve seen this season was not the AFC’s “performances”, but those AWFUL away kits of liverpool lol

  55. MichaelZ

    Agree your comments Pedro but not steve Bould. It has to be Martin Keown who got us to the CL Final in 2006 with his defensive coaching.

    Interesting thought – We drew with Man C, Chelsea, Everton & Man U at home. Had we won all those games, we would be just 2 points behind Liverpool at the top notwithstanding all our heavy losses away. And if we had beaten A Villa on day one…….

  56. Romford Pele

    N5,

    I like Martinez for sure. The tactical flexibility he showed yesterday was good.

    In our previous games against Everton, he’s played more of a 4-2-3-1 but I noticed yesterday that Barkley played a lot closer to McCarthy and Barry, making it more of a midfield three while the wingers were pushed very high up, presumably to exploit the space that Arsenal’s FBs would leave.

    Swapping Naismith with Lukaku also turned out to work really well. Naismith reminds me of that Kuyt, Muller-type player who isn’t very flashy but is a willing runner, drags defenders out of positions and has a knack of being in the right place at the right time to scrap home.

    It’s this sort of thing we rarely see from Wenger and is a stick I use to beat him with. Rarely does he change things up. I don’t think he always gets the best of what is necessarily available to him. For example, I would’ve brought on Ox and Ramsey at half-time but rarely, if ever is Wenger that bold.

    Coming back to Martinez, he’s been great this season but I wouldn’t jump on the bandwagon so soon. Managers can have good seasons and then fall off. He’s benefited from inheriting a good defence. If they do beat us to 4th and get CL, next season will be a bigger struggle. Like Liverpool, they’ve only really had one competition to play and haven’t had our level of injuries. Still, I think he’s good but will wait another year before making a definitive assessment.

  57. Leedsgunner

    Before everybody rags on Bould, let’s remember he’s been a great servant for the club. Am I saying he’s the right man to lead the club? Nope. But he isn’t deserving of all the angst and vitriol from some.

    Watching that famous highlights clip from 1989 when we won the league title from Liverpool with that goal from Thomas, I was reminded that Bould actually was part of that squad.

    I wonder what he thought last year, when he saw our lads “celebrating” like if they had won something “relevant.” Shameful, still deeply embarrassing… Where’s the pride in the shirt lads?

    To think we as a group of fans pay the highest ticket prices in the world for THIS.

  58. Dissenter

    Scariest thing for me is I have stopped getting angry since February. You won’t find me doing rants on legrove ever again.
    I have been dead to Wenger since the January transfer window. The man’ s ego is off the chain. Yore on top in January, with injuries to key players, the soccer gods gifted you a transfer window with money to spend and yet he spent the whole window bemoaning the existence of a winter transfer window.

  59. Romford Pele

    “Now I’m not saying he isn’t a good bloke or potential coach, but anything that connects us to Wenger cannot be the way forward”

    So by that token we should clear all 25 players on the roster too? Very simplistic argument. Goes deeper than that.

  60. Gregg

    Interesting to see what tactic he’ll apply to next week, having to play two games in 3 days with a team that looks dead on it’s feet. West Ham are safe and they will be licking their lips at taking us on. I can see him playing Kalstrom, Gnabry and Sanogo against Wigan.

  61. Paddy got up

    Dissenter great post

    You just put it much better than I could mate. First time I laughed out loud for a while when thinking of Arsenal..

  62. Romford Pele

    Jeff – maybe you’re right, I don’t know. Bould’s never really come out and stated his attentions has he? I get the feeling he’s happy as a coach but then again, the opportunity to manage Arsenal rarely comes up so maybe he’d jump at it. Like I say, I do like him and his style is actually very different to Wenger’s from those who watched his U18s side. Just would be about fourth or fifth on my list.

  63. SurferX

    Pedro
    “I promise you. It’s not Bould’s fault.”

    I agree with this 100%. If you learn anything by watching AW’s style of management, it is to understand that he knows everything; he is the decision-maker elect. It is both wrong and illogical to assume that you can gauge anything whatsoever on his coaching abilities whilst working under AW as he has neither the accountability or flexibility to do things his own way.

    Appointing Steve Bould would be fine if everything behind the scenes was established, autonomous and self-serving. But quite clearly it is not; there will be a period of change just like there is at ManU- the key part of the next appointment has to be someone with the breadth of experience in managing change in the club. Examine that at many different levels; someone with the experience of working in a high-pressure position; someone with a breadth of managerial, tactical and backroom setups; someone that has overseen change at a football club before.

    With a Steve Bould appointment, you are describing a system of ascension which could ultimately work well for the club in the future. But do not under-estimate the work needed to get there first.

  64. DUIFG

    @Romford Pele: What did you think of Martinez changing his teams shape yesterday and using different build up channels to score their goals.
    He put a third person forward and the commentators were lapping up the way Lukaku’s goal was scored and credited all of it to Martinez changing his approach specifically for Arsenal and were saying how a club like Arsenal would be where he should be aiming to manage now? What’s your thoughts on that, do you think it’s to early to tell and he is flavour of the month or do you think he’s the real deal?

    not sure why you guys want a perfect unblemished CV before u will take a plunge on a manager.

    Martinez/ laudrup won things at small clubs with a clear plan. yes things went astray at both but shit happens at small clubs, they always had direction.

    would much rather a manager like this to a steady eddy curbishley/moyes type who delivers your basic requirments but gets found out at the top. We need a shake up and its likely to come from a guy who hasnt won 7 scuddettos 20 years ago.

  65. N5

    Really solid post Romford and I couldn’t agree more. I thought his exploitation of the gaps our fall backs use was very clever and if we don’t make changes all teams will follow his lead and do the same.

    I really like Martinez and I think he is very very capable, but I’m not jumping on the bandwagon yet either. It’s Klopp for me, having him at Arsenal would be my dreams come true. Some want money, fast cars and women. I want Klopp and a cheaper season ticket!!

  66. Dissenter

    Leedsgunner,
    Agreed.
    Steve Bould is a great servant of the club.
    But we shouldn’t be placing him on the same pedestal as a Martinez or Rogers who’ve had the balls to leave to learn their trades and take risks along with failures to get to a place where any big club would be honored to have them.

    Bould will be the perfect caricature of the arsenal self preservation society that Pedro wrote about.

  67. DUIFG

    Two moments summed up the performance yesterday for me.
    1) Giroud’s lack of pace in chasing down a bad back pass – 60-40 in his favour and didn’t make it. Ball goes right down the other end and bang, 1-0 Everton.

    I could not actually believe how slow he was moving, going through treacle.

    Fergie said in his book Andy carrol was past up as he was too slow as a modern day striker. we have a guy possibly even slower who is less physical and awful in the air. 12m and we got what we paid for. Tripe.

  68. Romford Pele

    “not sure why you guys want a perfect unblemished CV before u will take a plunge on a manager.”

    I never said I wanted that to be the case. I want the best manager for Arsenal so that means analysing the faults and weaknesses of each one.

  69. Romford Pele

    “If Bould was appointed manager, who would be his assistant? Keown, Adams?”

    I think Adams would hate that. He already thinks he should be Arsenal manager. And while I love what he’s done as a player, his self-entitled nature does annoy me.

  70. Jeff

    I’ve said this before but Martinez did preside over a team that got relegated. I just wouldn’t feel comfortable employing someone like that. Yes he’s having a really good season with Everton but would anybody be overly surprised if this time next season they find themselves 8th?

  71. Dissenter

    How in the world did we get to a place where players like Sanogo are for ing an Arsenal shirt in a must-win-game?

    No other team in the League would have given Sanogo a contract.

  72. N5

    Jeff, we saw the same thing with Laudrup last year, loads of people last year saying we should get him in! thank fuck we didn’t a!!

  73. Paddy got up

    Romford
    Unfortunately the playing staff we have to give the benefit of doubt too as we don’t know what level of blame we can attach to them.

    Apart from Diaby. Yes I want him out!!

  74. Ashwin Gunner

    Well. We have not won anything for years doesn;t mean Wenger is not a good manager. but is attributed to the fact that he wants to own everything. from the fitness front to transfers. he should dilute his responsibilities to others.

    Rodgers is not out of the world nor is Mourinho. They are as good or bad as Wenger is. but they have a specialized backroom team who they take input from.

    In Wenger;s case he tried to be the god of this club.

    Its do or die for Wenger. Irrespective of whether we win anythign this season, he either has to accept that he will take inputs from his backroom staff or else leave and never turn back.

    If either of the two happens that will be the biggest achievement for this season.

  75. DUIFG

    Jeff, we saw the same thing with Laudrup last year, loads of people last year saying we should get him in! thank fuck we didn’t a!!

    Why??because he had a massive falling out with the chairman, he wasnt in the relegation zone when he got chucked, he had qualified through his europa group, it was a personality issue.

    You cant just look at a guy getting sacked and think hes awful, look into what happened.

  76. Gregg

    This time last year Laudrup was flavour of the month. If we end up ballsing up CL qualification then we may reap the benefit of only playing domestic games next season as Rodgers and Martinez have benefitted from this year. It’s no coincidence that it’s a major reason why both sides are in hot form at this stage of the season.

  77. bergkamplegend

    Does anyone knows of how much the ticket prices will increase for the next season ??
    Not funny ??

  78. Dannyboy

    ‘DissenterApril 7, 2014 10:41:37
    Scariest thing for me is I have stopped getting angry since February. ‘

    Same mate, as each goal flies in these days I just snort in derision. Don’t even get angry, just accept that we are shit and that’s the way it is.

    N5, I don’t have a preference between Klopp and Martinez to be honest. Both have won things and both have been relegated so I’d give either of them a fair crack. Possibly prefer Klopp because he is more of a character but then maybe Martinez would be more suited to our style of play? I dunno.

  79. N5

    DUIFG, rather than keep digging out my comments make your suggestion? who would you like to come in? would you take Laudrup? would you want Martinez? would you have Bould? you tell me what you would like!!

  80. Romford Pele

    “I’ve said this before but Martinez did preside over a team that got relegated. I just wouldn’t feel comfortable employing someone like that. Yes he’s having a really good season with Everton but would anybody be overly surprised if this time next season they find themselves 8th?”

    This is why i’m wary of people jumping on the flavours of the month. It’s the same ones who are advocating us going after Pochettino.

  81. Jeff

    N5,

    Yes. If we are going to pay through the nose to get someone, let us at least go for a real top notch manager with a proven track record. Otherwise, we can go cheap and promote from within and Bould isn’t really the end of the world. In any case, once Wenger goes, we are practically free to change the manager again if it all goes pear shaped so on balance I would not complain if they chose Bould as an interim solution. For example, Di Matteo got promoted and won the CL. He got sacked anyway because Abramovich had no real intention of keeping him on anyway and was looking to get Morinho at the first opportunity.

    Also, comparison with Sherwood isn’t really logical because nobody really knows how Bould would fair. He might set the world on fire or he might flop but I don’t think comparisons work well as it could go both ways.

  82. Romford Pele

    “If we end up ballsing up CL qualification then we may reap the benefit of only playing domestic games next season as Rodgers and Martinez have benefitted from this year. It’s no coincidence that it’s a major reason why both sides are in hot form at this stage of the season.”

    Exactly.

  83. Arsenal 1988

    I have to say, the situation is sort of reminiscent to the situation in Zimbabwe, Wenger reminds me of Mugabe.

  84. Al

    I’ll tell you what absolutely crushed me and the other gooners I was watching it with….

    Not the performance because we have seen that a number of times so wasn’t shocked. ..

    BUT the fact Arteta gets into a little scrap and not one player goes in his defence. …that just shows those players don’t have each others back when the chips are down.

    That broke me…..team is a mirror image of the manager

  85. N5

    “If we end up ballsing up CL qualification then we may reap the benefit of only playing domestic games next season as Rodgers and Martinez have benefitted from this year. It’s no coincidence that it’s a major reason why both sides are in hot form at this stage of the season.”

    The greatest trick that Rodgers ever pulled was not getting his team into the ECL….that was his power! – Keyser Soze [The Untouchables]

  86. Emiratesstroller

    I am not quite clear why anyone would consider Bould a good candidate to become manager. Like Pat Rice he is a loyal club servant, but he is part of furniture with absolutely no experience of top level management.

    He is nothing more than a decent coach.

    What we need is an ambitious and successful manager. Success means capable of either ‘improving’ a team or with a track record of winning trophies plus
    a ‘hunger’ to achieve success.

    Looking at current situation in EPL there is only one manager who would fulfil that criteria and we saw him first hand yesterday. That is Martinez. Another youngish manager who might fit the bill is the current Manager at Borussia
    Dortmund. In contrast to Martinez he does have some good experience at Champions League Level and also their development programme has produced some very high quality young players.

    Both these managers would I am sure consider us a step up from their current
    jobs considering the potential salary on offer and financial resources, which
    should be available.

    Both Borussia and Everton lack the finances to progress. We have seen already Borussia lose their best players and I suspect that the same will happen
    to Everton as well.

  87. Leedsgunner

    Jeff

    I can see your reasoning re Bould but we need to bring in a manager that World players will want to play for. Klopp has the knowledge the clout and the chrisma we need to compete with the likes of Maureen and Rodgers…. especially if Suarez decides to stay if Liverpool win the EPL….

  88. Ashwin Gunner

    We dont want a manager who has a flawless record. We want somebody who can assemble a great backroom staff and work with them.

    All the great managers of mordern era had a great team working with them. take for example Pep. He had a very good team which used to provide very intricate data about the opposition teams and they players.

    Same was the case with Ferguson in his last year. Was his team worth champions on paper. NO. But they won. and won convincingly. That victory clearly transponds to Fergie;s backroom staff and his own eye of detail. See what happened to Moyes when he sacked them all. He is as clueless as Wenger.

    We want a manager. Not a ruler.

    The first half of Wenger’s Era brought us glory. The second half have made us a laughing stock.

    And i really dont believe his is going to dilute his powers to his team. He is going to be the same. You cant change anybody’s character. Not after 64 years.

    And in case of Bould. He is being completely shadowed by Wenger. Wenger does not even Acknowledge Bould’s work with the defenders. Wenger is a egoistic man who wants all the credits to him. And when it comes to losing he blames it on REFEREES, FANS, HAND BRAKES, TRANSFER WINDOWS and of late on HAIR SUPPLEMENTS.

    Let me ask you Wenger. If Hair supplements were the main cause of injuries, why dont we see them in other teams. Why only with your teams……

    #WengerWillNotChange
    #WengerOut

  89. DUIFG

    I’m not having a go i just want the field of candidates not to get whittled down on the basis of 1 blip.

    Lpool would not have Rodgers after what happened at reading.

    The names we have mentioned. Koop in a dream. Biesla in reality

  90. Al

    The worrying thing is I am not sure if the people within the club currently know whether Bould is even a viable candidate.

    Do they know what is the best practice a manager has and if Bould has that and willingness to use those best practices available to a manager.?

    I would guess NO because how have they allowed wenger to get away with not utilising the best practices available for so freaking long

  91. Romford Pele

    “especially if Suarez decides to stay if Liverpool win the EPL”

    He’ll be there next season regardless mate. Liverpool have pretty much sewn up CL footie which was necessary in keeping Suarez. The PL wasn’t really their remit this season so they’re ahead of the game in that regard. Suarez has five years left on his contract and is earning 200k a week. Liverpool have no need to sell and it’d probably take a world record bid to prize him away.

  92. N5

    Dannyboy, no spoilers please though mate as I’m going to be watching that tonight. Fingers crossed for Khaalesi gash!!

  93. Ashwin Gunner

    I will put my money on Bould for the below reasons
    1) He know the club. and enjoys enourmous respect among the players and the staff.
    2) Not even one bit you can question his passion for the club.
    3) He has experience of winning multiple cups. He know the pressure and the hard work you have to put in.
    4) He is made a huge difference in our defense. He is a great coach. Till now he has been shadowe by Wenger. Lets face it. He has transformed our defence. and that is one of the main reasons we were at the top till Jan. We all know how WC our strike force is. A solid defence was one of the main reasons we were on top.

    All he needs to do is to listen more to the experts and make decisions on tactics and team formation. Leave all the other things right from transfers to players having hair supplements to the experts. And i guarantee you. We will be challenging of troply next season.

  94. JamesH

    On a lighter note did anyone see that bloke walking down the middle of the Holloway Road after Swansea screaming defiantly at every car ‘we’re gonna Wembley you’re not’ ? Dodged likely death a few times. I’d give him a chance as manager til end of season.

  95. Max85

    The problem goes much deeper than Wenger. Unfortunately, he is both the beneficiary and victim of an executive structure that doesn’t really know anything about football. Because of this, he’s been able/forced to mould the entire football side of the club on his own without any senior management or guidance, all based on his own perimeters of success – which themselves are based on outdated notions and ‘gut’ feel.

    I wouldn’t want to put Bould in the position of being a new manager under tremendous pressure with no senior support. A van Gaal or Heynkes would be perfect insofar as they know how to help build a football club to promote maximum results on the field. Frank de Boer also looks like he has this know-how, he would just need to be given the freedom and support to do it.

  96. Emiratesstroller

    The one major attraction which Arsenal can offer to any top manager is ‘stability’ The club has always been fairly patient with its managers as is also the case with Man Utd.

    The salary and bank balance if the Board are prepared to sanction proper investment in team are also considerable factors.

    What I want to see at Arsenal is a manager who will build ‘a solid and competitive’ team something that Wenger in recent times has been unable to do.

    The club does have some decent players on its books, but there needs to be
    proper investment over next two years with a cull of those players who are not
    good enough.

  97. Samir

    In this order:
    1. Jugen Klopp
    2. Diego Simone (If he’d come?)
    3. Roberto Martínez
    4. Rudi Garcia
    5. Steve Bould

  98. El Pige

    Great post this morning Pedro, a really enjoyable read and extremely difficult to argue with any of your points. Wenger’s inability to show any kind of evolution in his methods has been his downfall. Fergie constantly re-modelled himself throughout the years. I remember watching a Chelsea many years ago when Mourinho took off two players after 30 minutes because it wasn’t working and he wanted to change his teams fortunes. It is sad to see this happening to a man who brought so much to the club but Gazidis and co must realise that now is the time for change and they should be putting the framework in place. The club should be starting to work with the new man to get transfer targets drawn up and any changes wanted with regards to coaching and fitness personnel . Will it happen? Don’t know but this is the closest we have come to seeing the end of Wenger’s era as manager. Definitely a tale of two periods. The glorious and the abject failure and inability to recognise why.

  99. SurferX

    Klopp would be ideal; the parallels with Arsenal are perfect. Dortmund were a club with a history of success (most recently in the 90’s) that had consistently failed since 2002. He had the challenge of reversing that failure with the added complication of one-team’s financial dominance over the rest of the league. He succeeded (spectacularly so) despite the growing divide between Bayern and the rest. He is young enough for the challenge (46), and charismatic enough to bring people along with him in the changes we need. He would undoubtedly move the club forward in all aspects of sports-science (where we are lacking) as this is his (academic) background.

    In addition, he is German, and with the large number of German players already at Arsenal, there will be come familiarity with the playing staff. Why would he come to Arsenal? Well, aside from 7.5m reasons, he would finally be able to compete in a league where the club have not have to sell its best players, where the club is on a (nearly) equal financial footing with its competitors, and where he has the opportunity to move from ‘good’ manager to one of the ‘greats’.

    Those pointing to his failure that those who’ve never failed have also never learnt from failure: someone said that failures are just signposts on the path to attainment which holds true for many great managers. That being said, you need the attainment to follow the failure for it to prove its worth (something that Martinez still does not have, imho).

    My only real reservation is that he openly (in Germany) a practising Christian, and Im not sure we need someone else that turns to blind faith as a credible basis for progression (not that I know he’s ever done that in football terms, I just don’t trust religious types in general).

  100. gazzap

    Pedro, come on, I love Bouldy and he can stay forever as defensive coach but our next manager needs to be someone like Martinez or De Boer. A club like Arsenal needs to using someone with evidence of a successful track record.

  101. Jeff

    On Klopp, I believe he’s contracted till June 2018 having signed in 2013 so I don’t think that just because this season wasn’t as good as his previous, we should necessarily assume he’s going to want out.

    I take your point Dannyboy that he presided over the relegation of Mainz in 2008 and opted to resign after failing to take them back up again. However, that was rather long ago and Martinez’s Wigan relegation is still fresh. We have to ask whether Klopp has actually won anything since his time with Dortmund when he became manager there in 2008. He won the Bundesliga in 2011 and 2012, DFL Supercup in 2013 and CL runner up in 2013.

    That’s actually a bit more impressive than anything Martinez has done so on balance I would not reject Klopp simply because he has a good record with Dortmund and he’s been there 6 years. As for dynamism, desire, passion and the hunger to win; he’s second to none.

    But I really don’t think he’s going to leave a year into his contract.

  102. Romford Pele

    “how ’bout Van Gaal?”

    He’s quite old – want someone who is gonna be here long term. Not really sold on Di Matteo either.

    My list:
    Simeone (probably too much of a hot head for the board to handle mind you)
    Klopp
    Garcia
    Martinez
    Bould

  103. Dissenter

    Had anyone noticed that Arsene isn’t learning from his mistakes?
    It’s like the last trouncing never happened.
    All that talk of “leaders in the team ” is gone now.
    The players all look like ghosts right now.
    …and I see that Scezny isn’t taking selfies on the field anymore.

  104. Al

    Frank De Boer. ….took over ajax 2010…about to win the title fourth time in a row in dominant fashion.

    Impressive considering how the state of the club before him.

    Even more impressive is the type of style and players they are producing.

    I think we will regret it BIG time if we let him slip to another club

  105. Romford Pele

    “My only real reservation is that he openly (in Germany) a practising Christian”

    Is he? Lol, i’d never guess that from the way he acts on the pitch.

  106. Samir

    Just imagine Klopp coming in with his team…

    Reus
    Piszczek
    Mangala
    Bender
    Diego Costa

    ………..Chesney………
    Piszczek–Mangala–Koss–Gibbs
    ……….Bender–Ramsey………
    ..Walcott–Ozil–Reus
    ………….Costa………….

    Remember: That team would be well prepared for each opposition, it’d play with motivation and high pressure.

    Why not give it a go?

  107. Dissenter

    There’s is no manager with an unblemished record.
    Learning your trade right means you’ve been there through highs and lows.
    It doesn’t bother me that Martinez and Klopp have managed teams that were relegated. It’s all part of the evolution of a modern day manager. You start low and work your way up.

  108. SurferX

    Apparently so Romford- I was speaking to a German colleague a while back who said he regularly mentions it in interviews and stuff.

  109. bigper

    personally don’t trust gazidis to get it right, if he had any concerns for the football side of the club then wenger would have gone long ago, his lack of football knowledge itself isn’t a problem but the fact he doesn’t try to challenge wenger at all on the football side of things is worrying for the future

  110. Jimmythegun

    Yesterday was worse than City, United or Chelsea for me – we were playing a team with many more limitations (don’t get me wrong, they are better than us) and we looked completely bereft of ideas.

    Wenger was more passive than I have ever seen him (his lack of in-game influence has always been his trademark) and our right back was our most dynamic, forward thinking and adventurous player.

    Watching us slowly fumble the ball towards their box only to advocate responsibility to absolutely anyone else was painful to watch.

    Blame lies with both the manager AND the players. It’s incredible to think that this season was being touted as ‘our best in 9 years’ but in reality we need a minimum of two new defenders, two central midfielders, at least one winger and two strikers. Forget the idea of having a week squad, we are 6 or 7 FIRST team players away from being truly competitive.

    Everyone Out!

  111. vp

    Surfer X

    I do agree with everything you are saying (in the context of accountability to the club rather than the manager), but transition itself is something that needs to be managed. I do not see anyone capable at the club that has performed that role before; or has the relevant breadth of football expertise to look to identify those areas in need of change or who should lead them.

    Have to totally agree with this comment.

    I do not have faith in the board’s ability, knowledge or intentions to successfully implement a change of this manor. Furthermore, they will always opt for the option that fits best with delivering LONG TERM Shareholder wealth to the owner.

    The primary reason why they want Wenger to stay is so that they continue (owner/board) to deflect accountability at operational level. It’s pretty irrelevant how well Wenger does on the pitch (aslong he gets top four)… he serves a wider purpose!

    If there’s one good thing that could come out of Wenger leaving, it’s that the board will be exposed to a level of scrutiny like never before.

    The directors on the board are selected on their ability to deliver long term shareholder wealth… not necessarily because of their ability to govern and derive footballing success! They appear to be very good at what they are being asked to do .The owner is the only person to blame and the club will continue decline (with/without Wenger) for as long as this remains the case.

  112. simonlevert

    The manager is to blame – pure and simple. I’m a sales manager and if we don’t sell enough as a team the boss fires me – not members of my team. The manager has the power to replace team members and if his team doesn’t perform its the manager’s head on the chopping block. This is Arsenal FC not Arsene FC.
    If Wenger isn’t replaced then I advocate making sure the board of directors get the message. Unfortunately Stan doesn’t care. Look at his other teams. As long as they make money he could care less if we win anything.

  113. Jeff

    Bigper,

    Did Wenger himself not appoint Gazidis? So, why would Gazidis challenge Wenger and endanger his own position. It’s all very incestuous you know? That’s where most of our problems lie anyway – the fact that Wenger has built around him an impenetrable fortress that only he himself can dismantle which if I may add he’s currently doing a splendid job.

  114. Pedro

    Guys, a lot of disagreeing with my Bould post.

    I’m gonna start banning people shortly.

    You know the rules.

  115. Dissenter

    Wenger complains of loan system that helps teams like Everton over-achieve
    http://www.independent.co.uk/sport/football/premier-league/arsenal-manager-arsne-wenger-slams-player-loan-system-9241211.html

    Wenger complains about January transfer window: ” this transfer window is a distraction”
    http://www.standard.co.uk/sport/football/this-transfer-window-is-a-distraction-says-arsene-wenger-9051396.html

    Mourhino on Wenger: “Wenger always complains”
    “http://www.bbc.com/sport/0/football/25888512”

    Yes. He does complain. He has turned us into the club of a million and one excuses. He’s been derelict in his job yet he complains about every single thing.

  116. Leedsgunner

    “We don’t want a manager with a flawless record…”

    True. However, a manager who is willing, ACTUALLY WILLING, to learn from his mistakes and NOT repeat them would be a great start.

    I missed the game yesterday, so my comments below are based on the observation of others but it sounds like we set ourselves up in exactly the same manner that we have against Liverpool, Chelsea, Man City and we allowed them to press and pressure us off the ball… and then they attacked us on the counter — and because we have an immobile centre-backs and midfield and no pace on the wings to speak of… we were over-run.

    Huh? Am I missing something? Isn’t this what happened against Man City, Liverpool, Chelsea… and Swansea (to a certain extent?). Why are we not at least setting ourselves up differently to prove at least a challenge?

    We make it so easy for our rivals.

  117. simonlevert

    Steve Bould’s advantages knowing the club outweigh the disadvantages in my book. Lets face it what AFC needs more than anything right now is some organisation in defence and Bouldy – part of the “boring Arsenal” George Graham legacy – is perfectly placed to deliver. I also happen to think he might do something our current manager seems incapable of doing – listen.

  118. bigper

    jeff

    yeah I think wenger did approve the appointment of gazidis lol but at the end of the day he works for arsenal not wenger. I just think if he had the balls and vision to improve arsenal on the footballing side of things then surely he would be pushing to implement things already.

  119. Jeff

    I see a lot of players doing their religious prayers and signs when they come onto the pitch. Does it make them perform any less or more? Nadal is supremely superstitious, has all sorts of rituals and routines that he follows but does it diminish his talent one jot? No I don’t think whether you are religious or irreligious makes much of difference to be honest.

  120. N5

    Leeds, I think Surfer is concerned of a Glenn Hoddle type manager if he is overly spiritual!

    Do you remember all the faith healing?

  121. bigper

    theres no way wenger will collaborate either, if hes not collaborating now why would that change for next season? especially when you consider he has already been offered a new deal. the club are happy as things are

  122. Mark

    I’m not saying I want Bould as manager but it would be telling. It would be interesting to see who was dropped and who was drafted in from game one. Would he fast track one or two from his time with the youth set up?

  123. Jeff

    Yes, I suppose we are all talking somewhat as if it was a forgone conclusion that Arsene is going to call it a day. I’m sure he thinks about it but I’m also sure he changes his mind daily so it’s not by any means a certainty that he will walk. He is dithering, just like all those transfer decisions over which he couldn’t make his mind up in time.

  124. Biggles

    Wenger needs to go. I hope he’ll leave if he wins the FA Cup, so he can go on a high note. There’s just no way of redeeming the last 8 years at this point. He could stay and win the Champions League next year and it still wouldn’t be enough for me, simply because I think with a change of manager and proper investment we should have won it in the last decade anyway, along with a bunch of other trophies.

    The worst part of it all is that when the squad is fully fit and not knackered, we have a pretty decent team. If we could replace the second string dross with players who were better than our first teamers, we’d get a whole lot stronger and have a squad that could win things. But we also need to do more than just replace man-for-man, we need to pick a bloody formation. What are we these days?

    I read this: http://abehnisch.com/wenger-4-2-3-1/ and it looks at the formation setup of the Invincibles and how it was more of a 4-2-3-1 than a 4-4-2. And then it occurred to me that I have no idea what our ideal formation is, or what Wenger is trying to make us. Given how few strikers we have and how many midfielders we have, perhaps he’s trying for a 4-6-0?

    I don’t really see any tactical difference with any of Wenger’s substitutions. You should be able to swap between formations to break down a team, or to plug gaps. Our shape is always the same.