Uberpositives vs Shalackings

by .

So after Pedro posted about his Dortmund exploits – including some pretty racey pictures of German sausage – I’m back to have another go after Wednesday’s post (meltdown).

Now that the pain of Tuesday night is a little less fresh in the memory and the wound that is Arsenal’s season has started to scab, I was going to try and offer some perspective.

At least that was the case until I read that we are in for Lassana Diarra. And here is exactly why being an Arsenal fan is such a headfuck:

1. I’d be delighted if we signed Diarra because we desperately need a player like him at DM;
2. I’d be furious with the manager because it’s something he could and should have sorted in the summer rather than waiting until it has cost us points in the league and CL;
3. I kind of hope this is just paper talk because if true it absolutely beggars belief.

So there you have it – delight and fury from the same piece of news, while simultaneously hoping that it is and isn’t true. It’s Kaiser Soze levels of banter from Arsenal there’s no other way of looking at it.

In other news the div brigade have been on at Pedro for exactly what I highlighted in my post on Wednesday:


Well yeah but he also said Klopp, LVG or Guardiola would do a better job and that Moyes and Coyle were ‘curve balls’ who at the time were pretty much universally regarded as promising young managers. And lest we forget it IS possible for people to make mistakes in football.

Arsene thought Almunia, Traore, Squillaci. Silvestre, Santos, Bischoff, Denilson, Diawara, Chamakh and Park were all good enough to play for Arsenal. That’s a whole team of wrong right there.

What’s so offensive about highlighting errors in exactly the way I have just done is it’s an argument against taking a risk, against the unknown. It’s saying don’t imagine that things could ever be better, just be happy with things as they are – and don’t EVER question it. It’s all a bit 1984 to be honest (not to massively overdramatise football or anything).

Certainly when you encounter some of the überpositives online (I’ve never met one in the stadium) they always seem one or two tweets away from drinking the kool-aid.

But slowly, as the piss-poor performances continue to rack up, their excuses are becoming more and more feeble.

First it was stadium debt, then it was competing with oil-rich clubs, then it was treacherous players who left us in the lurch, now it’s about showing respect to a man who has done so much for the club.

While there’s an element if truth in all these points, there’s always a reason not to criticise – and demanding someone be beyond criticism out of ‘respect’ is the last refuge of a scoundrel.

I do respect Arsene Wenger but I don’t think he can cut it with the very best anymore which is what we should demand for a club of our stature.

Another fun thing I tried to do yesterday is recount all the maulings and ridiculous comebacks we’ve suffered as a club over the last few years (since 2008 when things really started to go wrong). Here’s my list, let me know if I’ve missed any:


Chelsea (prem) 6-0
Everton (prem) 3-0
City (prem) 6-3
Liverpool (prem) 5-1
United (prem) 8-2
Milan (CL) 4-0
Barcelona (CL) 4-1
United (CL) 3-1
Tottenham (CC) 5-1

Ridiculous comebacks:

West Brom (prem) 3-2
Tottenham (prem) 3-2
Newcastle (prem) 4-4
Tottenham (prem) 4-4
Birmingham (prem) 2-2

Now ask yourself which other top teams have racked up as many shalackings or hilarious collapses as Arsenal have in recent years? Every team will have one or two but none with a list as impressive as ours.

What’s the point I’m trying to make here? I don’t know really, probably that we are just not as good as we think we are. And out of all those results listed above, players have changed, formations have changed and backroom staff have changed. The one thing that has remained constant is the manager.

But you know that’s where we are at at the moment, it can’t be changed. Let’s look at what can be changed ahead of Villa on Saturday.

First and foremost the formation. I read a great article that said the reason we have moved to 4-1-4-1 is to accommodate Wilshere. Rather than a double pivot of Ramsey and Arteta with Özil at number 10, we now have a single pivot of Arteta (ie more ground for him to cover) with Ramsey and Wilshere both helping out in defence and attack (box to box), without either seeming to know who is the defendy one and who is the attacky one. Meanwhile our best no10, Özil, is shunted out wide.

So the problem with this formation is that it doesn’t suit Özil, Ramsey, Arteta or Wilshere himself. I’d advocate going back to the old formation but who knows, maybe it will click soon.

In terms of the opposition, Villa seem to be better this season but I don’t know or really care why. We just have to start winning games and quickly.

Before I go huge congratulations to Scotland for voting No last night. I had serious concerns about what it would mean for Scottish players like Gareth Bale and Aaron Ramsey and our imports of bagpipes and Iron Bru but I get the feeling everything is going to be alright.

I’ll be back tomorrow with a better preview of the Villa game. Let me know your thoughts in the comments – and also can someone explain who Oswald is?

Follow me on twitter @aldo_doel  xxx

573 Responses to “Uberpositives vs Shalackings”

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  1. Craigy

    Can’t believe UEFA past on the millennium stadium to host some of the games in euro 2020, instead opting for a smaller stadium in Scotland? Doesn’t make sense that

  2. Cesc Appeal

    I do think like a lot of people that Wenger has lost that eye for a player to a certain extent. Not sure whether that’s age, the football world moving on leaving him behind, or everybody else having caught on to what he was doing, caught up and then surpassed him.

  3. Rocky Pires

    My team to battle with Villa,

    Tuesday Night

  4. Romford Pele

    James Olley @JamesOlley · 2h
    As many on here requested, I asked Wenger about switch to 4-1-4-1. Said he didn’t want to go into details but admitted changes had been made

    James Olley @JamesOlley · 2h
    Wenger: “We failed in some big games last year and behind that is the thinking that we have to be more solid in some games.”

    If it’s big games fine, but not at home against Palace and the like.

  5. Romford Pele

    I do think there’s something to be said about short GKs. It’s why I’ve never rated Mignolet – and it’s why I have slight doubt over Ospina. hope i’m wrong though.

  6. Al

    Mignolet was always not commanding in the air.

    You have got to have height to be able to have that command in the air and around the 6 yard box.

  7. Cesc Appeal


    “We failed in some big games and behind that was the thinking…”

    I would have loved to have interjected, “what big games like away to BvB? Solid strategy.”

    Really is weird, if all summer this 4-1-4-1 was in his head you’d have thought that would have made him go mad for a class holding player in the middle to sit solo.

    Arteta was brutally exposed at times last year as part of a double pivot…I KNOW let’s let him do that job alone this year!!! #WengerLogic

  8. Cat's Meow

    Aaron Ramsey and Bale are Scots?

    I can understand why Wenger might want to go to 4-1-4-1 but when do we say its not working and change to something that is more familiar?

  9. MadeToLoveMagic

    the interesting thing with wenger is that we will never know exactly how good or bad he actually is.. Its like he uses “financial restraint” in order to keep holes in his squad so if he does succeed he is hailed a genius and if he doesnt then he has something to fall back on, ie “we are living in crazy times where oiled up barons are killing the game, and through all that weve still qualified for the champions league since before julius caeser was in nappies blah blah”//

    I tend to disaggree with pedro though in the sense that i think wenger would 100% succeed with a team with no weaknesses, and they would play great, but who knows?

    surely it would be a damn sight easier for wenger to address the needs rather than constantly getting bashed for not signing enough.. He looks about 100 at the end of each season these days, one fa cup win and hes looking 10 years younger, now the cracks are starting to appear again

    this DM thing is extra nuts,, i mean we definitely bid for carvalho on the laast day,, So why didnt we sign him? what was the reasoning?? what that “we’ll cope with arteta and flamini till xmas”?

    COULD wenger really have only started to doubt arteta based on that night in dortmund? surly not< whats the reasoning, jack in DM? then if you are so sure then why did we put that bid in for carvalho? MIND FUCK

    again we lose the chance to shine over a few mill of what wenger sees as "too much"

    bet you would have paid the extra for that 18 year old ronaldo in hindsight eh arsene?

    We lost out on Hazard , a player who will be worth more than 100 mil, we lost out on mata, on gotze, the list goes on, ,

    these are all players who wenger decided didnt represent proper value, and they all will sell for more than what the clubs paid for them ( chavds paid like 22 mil for mata, sold him for 37)

    all players who chose arsenal, based on the work arsene had himself done

    I think wenger through all his talks of handbrakes has actually gone and turned in to one

  10. Swissguns

    I think that Wenger should go. He’s past it and should move on. But if I saw somebody in a “fu*k off Wenger” T-Shirt at a home game I’d think he was a massive dick.
    Your frustrations can be expressed with a touch of class. And the anger some of you show is out of proportion to your so-called injury.
    Romford’s disinclination to protest is his right. The whole idea of “protest” at a football club reeks of self-pity and ridiculousness. I’m sure all those people in real trouble in this world are groaning at the injustice of those of us forced to consume football of such low quality!

  11. london gunner

    Lol Anyone hear about the banner unfurled against spurs when they played partizan belgrade

    It was a rip of only fools and horses

    Only Jews and Pussies

    PC brigade are going nuts about it of course

  12. Mark

    Just to be a bit more solid and shake things up a bit until we get to January – when Wenger will buy a WC DM. You know he will!?!


    Coquelin and one other just to sit and break up play in front of the defence. This would stop the countless times we get caught on the back foot when we lose possession on the edge of our opponents penalty box.

  13. Romford Pele

    “I agree but then I think of Casilias. His shorter than half the RM team lol”

    Casillas is a legendary GK mate though I’ve never been convinced about him coming for crosses. He’s been in dreadful form for the last year or so. Still that shouldn’t detract from the awesome 15-year career he’s had and all the trophies he’s won. Magnificent.

  14. Romford Pele

    Yeah Cesc, way too many riddles from AW for my liking. Tbh I don’t even like the idea of one holding. I’d prefer two but with one who’s able to break up play and get forward too… *cough* Ramsey. But hey-ho, this dinosaur lives in a world of his own.

  15. Mark

    or, although we don’t have CB cover…


  16. Ben

    I have zero respect for Wenger. Wenger is a complete scum and is conning of the club. I absolutely hate him and can’t stand him. I wish he had never joined us.

  17. N5

    Cesc, It baffles me. If the press had a celeb that they knew certain questions would rile them up then they ask them those exact questions. There have been a million headbutt, shoving, shaved head moments in that world.

    Yet football managers get a pass. I’ve seen Fergie, HR and Wenger all react to the questions they were posed only to never have those questions asked again.

    Why does not a single person say to Wenger, what on earth are you thinking having no DM and only 6 defenders? are they that worried about the Why you look at me?

  18. Romford Pele

    Nedved-Figo is very difficult to split. I have a big soft spot for Nedved, loved watching him though Figo was an absolute animal of a footballer. Takes some real balls to switch from Barca to Real Madrid. Lol that pigs head. I’ll give it to Nedved, just. And that’s pretty much based on personal opinion more than anything else.

  19. Al

    Casilias also had the luxury of playing in Spain. Complete different game to England. Teams are not constantly whipping in crosses, playing for set pieces, have huge target men/ etc compared to England

  20. Manx Gooner

    You missed out Wigan 3 – 2 Arsenal back in 2010.

    We were 2-0 up until the 80th minute then conspired to lose the match! I was there and have wanted Wenger out since then.

  21. carts

    “Would everyone still play Ozil at the weekend?”

    If he plays directly behind Welbeck then yes.
    If it’s that stupid 4-1-4-1 then no; I’d play Ox with left.

  22. Romford Pele

    N5 – Not sure although I think some of the journalists don’t wanna be alienated from the big clubs, especially considering the coverage they’d bring in. Remember Fergie not talking to the BBC for seven years before they apologised and he went back to speaking to them.

  23. N5

    Shit Romford, that’s a very good point. I guess in that respect the club holds all the cards, but if he slips and falls outside Liverpool Street Station then the cards are in their hands as he’s away from the club and in their world now.

    I’d never thought of it that way before.

  24. Romford Pele

    Lol Scholes loves to open his mouth and talk these days, doesn’t he? Never heard a peep from him as a player. Guess he has to earn his keep somehow. That said, I don’t overly disagree with him on his Y. Toure assertions.

  25. Relieable sauce

    “Why should he be a scapegoat? For what? We’ve lost one game since April 6,” said Wenger. “Let’s be realistic. We’ve come out of a very difficult preparation period with decisive games. We had very difficult games against Besiktas. I don’t know, a scapegoat for what?

    Your ineptitude of course!?!…Do we have to tell you everything???

  26. london gunner

    I dunno Casillas in his prime owned europe.

    Against English teams or indeed any european teams no matter if the striker was big or small, target man or fast and tricky Casillas had enough tricks up his sleeve to deal with them.

    Casillas or Buffon (in their prime)?????

  27. DUIFG

    I would be happy dropping scez guy is not where he needs to be, puts us in the shit quite a bit with wild distribution. takes down players in the box as well, don’t know why he does not stand and let them take another touch and beat him than mindlessly diving out totally missing the ball and giving pens/red cards away.

    its unduly rash, I think that adjectives sums him up as a keeper tbh.

  28. Bergkamplegend

    “Ben : I have zero respect for Wenger. ”

    I have respect for the manager that wenger was during the 1996/2006 period.

    I have no respect for what he become, and mostly because of his unability to see that his pride has killed him.

  29. bhenChode

    DUIFG. .. he’s a arrogant and does to do silly things…. but he’s not as bad as your making him out to be, a lot of what you said I don’t recall him doing too many times ?

  30. Ben


    He signed a new contract even after failing for a decade and look where we are now. What a cunt. Fuck him. I’d rather we never got him

  31. ughelligunner

    How come nobody is talking about wenger presser saying ozil is free to roam like cazorla. You too romford n n5. Agenda?
    Watching d matches again man city and dortmund, ozil was making passes from every angle in the attack. Watch the build up to sanchez goal vs city, he laid it from inside right to ramsey for the cross.
    I think what pple are expecting from ozil is for him to either make assist/dribble consistently. I don’t blame him for those i only blame him for not tackling and pushing opponents back. That won’t be done if he plays in the middle or not.

  32. DUIFG

    Ben, take a look at MNF from the city game, last 10 mins he is throwing out to players in our own half, misses them and city are on to our back 4, any experienced pro there lets us get up the field buys time and puts it long.

    v Bayern last year robben is through on goal comes thumping out takes him clean out, just stand the guy let him take another touch, he probably will score, but it puts the ball back in his court he may fuck it up, you certainly wont get sent off, I just think scez makes it so easy for strikers going for im either winning this ball or taking you down approach.

  33. Ben


    Yeah Szcz is a complete clown. Worst keeper in the league. Even someone like Kasper Schmiechel is a solid keeper and would do a better job than this clown. Then again most of the players are clowns and shit anyway.

  34. DUIFG

    one of the reasons 4 1 4 1 isn’t working because we are never working overloads out wide. last year with ozil at 10 he would like to drift right, this then creates a 3 on 1 immediately before you have even done anything special.

    Now with him out there already we are a lot more ridged rw rb verses their equivalents. Its really not working as we are leaking goals and look totally inept in attack,

  35. Bergkamplegend

    “I’d rather we never got him” ???
    So no “Invincibles” maybe ??

    We should feel happy for having lived those times, the youngers fans who missed those times are the most to feel sorry for.

    Otherwise, Wenger out for sure lol

  36. bhenChode

    DUIFG I agree he’s prone to doing some mental things like that drag back against Dortmund when he had 2 players chasing him down… The type of character he is means time to time he will need to be dropped just to get him focused again… but let’s see if Ospina gets his chance and gives sir schez something to think about. Oh and the ‘selfies’ after games he needs to cut that shit out!

  37. london gunner

    Buffon is the goal keepers goal keeper.

    In fact his a mans man (no homo)

    His a leader with far superior organisation skills than Casillas as well as a better reading of the game because of this his positioning is superior as well as his general anticipation.

    At the same time Casillas is like the Maverick wild cat
    His organisation is pretty poor but he compensates with ridiculous technique, reflexes making him as explosive and acrobatic shot stopper

    Casillas pulls off more out of this world saves because his more gifted in terms of physical performance but also because he makes more mistakes thus leaving him in these situations where he has to bail him self out somewhat. His disruption is also far superior.

    Its chalk and cheese mind over matter.

  38. Ben

    Seeing Mkhitarayn’s performance who is a no 10 who played on the wing and absolutely destroyed us make all the excuses of Ozil playing out of position pathetic. Has Ozil ever given a performance like that? He cost 20m and is twice the player Ozil is. Mkhitarayan puts these performances week in week out regardless of whether he plays at no 10 or the wing.

  39. Biggus

    I agree with TYAG about Wenger nurturing talent. I think it’s one of those things that happened back then in the glory years but somewhere along the line is no longer there but people still talk about it.

    We haven’t produced any good talent for the last few years even with us nicking them from other academies so i’m really stumped at people still banging on about it.

    The fact is that we don’t rotate players and senior players now play cup games as well as important matches due to us not being prepared well during the transfer window or even trusting the youngsters.

    I won’t call Wenger names or say he’s a bad manager but i think he’s not has good as he was due to being too long on the job or getting used to failing or just holding on to that pipe dream that he will make it to the top again whilst doing the same thing over again.

  40. ughelligunner

    The thing with ozil is not the position he plays but the shit he should be putting. That’s what i see not driblings and runs even if he is capable.
    Silva n fabregas put in tackles that was why morhino sold Mata.
    Commentator/analyst these days are sentimental to the game which is not good for football, and fans are reactionary to what they say and what they see (eg. Paul scholes see arsenal short comings in ozil but never says anything bad in man utd and rooney) No wonder only goal scorers and assist midfielder win the best of awards never a dm or a cb.

  41. DUIFG

    DUIFG I agree he’s prone to doing some mental things like that drag back against Dortmund when he had 2 players chasing him down… The type of character he is means time to time he will need to be dropped just to get him focused again… but let’s see if Ospina gets his chance and gives sir schez something to think about. Oh and the ‘selfies’ after games he needs to cut that shit out!

    I agree, he can become a really solid keeper with some decent competition. sadly courtois has shown he is unlikely to ever get to WC

  42. Ben


    All that happened not because of Wenger but inspite of him. He was just at the right place at the right time. Without Graham’s, Rioch’s excellently coached players Wenger would have failed. Do you know what he has won with his own built squad coached by him? 1 lucky FA Cup. He is a fraud who got lucky.

  43. london gunner


    Cech has got a red card for doing exactly what Szcz did as have many top keepers. Shit happens sometimes when your a keeper.

    I think its time we leave of the boy there is a reason his statistically the 2nd best keeper last season. It starts with…( His very ) and ends in… (good)

    People really fail to anayese Szcz they evaluate the stereotype but not the actual performances. They focus on thing he didn’t do perfectly and forget the match winning or match drawing saves he makes.

    They sweep the positive under the rug (which is a lot hence his great stats) and focus on the negative.

    For instance the myth Szcz is error prone is a bit of bollocks he made 3 defensive errors last season a lot less than many other keepers in the league

  44. Bergkamplegend

    “He was just at the right place at the right time.”

    Yes, you’re probably right…
    I guess that this has become some kind of curse for him.

  45. bhenChode

    Ozil reminds me of what Riquelme went through outstanding talent/play maker … but just wasn’t bothered about the other side of the game… in some ways we would be better off having 2 dms to go let Ozil really do his thing. But that could mean sacrificing the likes of wilshire and Ramsey but I suppose that’s why teams have depth and intelligent managers who can switch systems.

    Bayern did that 3 times in one game!

  46. N5

    Ug, free to roam isn’t the same thing though is it when you already have a crowded middle. And until today I’ve not made any comment about Ozil/Wenger, so I’m not really sure where the agenda comment has come from?

  47. DUIFG

    London gunner I concede he had the most clean sheets last year, although did get pummelled in other noted matches,

    Maybe I am just holding him to a wc standard that he is not at, how many times have I thought thank fuck for scez, not that often. He sits outside wc for me.

  48. DUIFG

    Ozil reminds me of what Riquelme went through outstanding talent/play maker … but just wasn’t bothered about the other side of the game… in some ways we would be better off having 2 dms to go let Ozil really do his thing. But that could mean sacrificing the likes of wilshire and Ramsey but I suppose that’s why teams have depth and intelligent managers who can switch systems.

    Bayern did that 3 times in one game!

    I agreed that we needed pace in our frontline to fully perform but I will draw the line at the guy needing 2 dm’s as well. How much does this kid need?

  49. ughelligunner

    For me i would say let ozil be. Maybe he is still surprise how fast the English league is and he is still trying to adapt.
    As a person he is still baffled as to how players tackle each other here and he is terrified of getting injuries hence he declines from making challenges. At real Madrid for pple who have watched him he never tackles hard. Wish his price tag was lower than 20m he would have been left alone by the media.
    #leave our players alone. #Team Arsenal

  50. ughelligunner

    This is funny, if chelsea/man utd fans come mocking me about our trophyless years, i normally tell them we are not competing for trophys with them lol. And guess what they just leave my arsenal from their amusement although inside me would be fuming for retaliation.

  51. salparadisenyc

    Only Wenger would switch to a formation that places more reliance on a mobile holding mid that must win the ball, then neglect to upgrade the two players whom slot into this role that lack any sort of pace or ball winning skills. Then potentially sign a player in Diarra (on a free) whom for whatever reason he likely sold to soon and is now well past his abilities.

  52. Cesc Appeal



    I mean they know what’ll happen, he’ll give some vague, incredulous response that leaves everyone going “okaaaaaaaay then” and exchanging worried glances that this guy drove here.

  53. N5

    Ha ha CA.

    He has started to remind me of Cantona in that respect. Do you remember Cantona Seagulls follow the trawler comment! Maybe the French just go into poetic mode when they hit a certain age and no one else has any idea what they are talking about.

  54. ughelligunner

    N5, no i don’t just mean agenda from you, but people quoting from wenger’s comments about ozil but they are not mentioning where he said ozil is free to roam, though i thought you av read his presser.
    I think somebody like flamini should be made to train against ozil and rough handle him in training a bit. He just let the opposing players go by him so easily.
    I read that was what was done to Dennis berkamp that made him tough. True?

  55. N5

    To be fair ug, I never say a bad word about Ozil and have defended him non stop since joining and I’ve never blamed Wenger for his decline until yesterday. Let’s just say I agree that the free to roam is as good as playing the number 10 position for him, then why is his poor from going unchallenged. Does Wenger feel he’s currently playing well enough? however, if it is getting challenged, why is Wenger coming out and saying, “leave Ozil alone” or whatever the heck it was he said last.

    I’ve seen an amazing player fade into a shadow of himself and anyone who says its the league has obviously never seen Madrid vs Barca or Madrid vs Athleico, because Ozil would have been kicked a hell of a lot of times during those matches.

  56. Biggus

    I think in order for this 4-1-4-1 formation to work, we need to have natural wingers or players that have speed and perhaps track back which means our full backs don’t need to act like the wing backs which is what happens now.

    When you have a number 10 like Ozil, Wilshere and to some extent Ramsey play on the wings, they are tend to drift inside which leaves the full back supporting them only two choices – pass into the middle where the player in front of them has now drifted to or run along till they can get a cross in. Either way we are subject to lose possession and the full back has a long way to cover.

    If we have the following

    Normal Back 5
    Coq/Chambers (refuse to name arteta and flamini)

    We will be fairly okay with this formation especially if the full backs have been instructed not to drift too much past the half way line except in counters

  57. freddylekgunner

    Happy Friday everyone… Its like I’ve just been freed from jail… There was no internet access in the whole country for 3days.

  58. salparadisenyc

    I’ve done nothing but back Ozil from day 1, in fact i’m still ecstatic we’ve signed him. It’s pretty simple as this stage, he needs to step up and play football up to his abilities. We all know what he’s capable of as does he.

    The days of wine and roses are over.

  59. N5

    Lol TYAG, he’s a good guy really and I think I misread his comment, because no one could possibly say that me or Romford had an agenda…..could they???? why you look at me???????

  60. salparadisenyc

    Thats the problem with coming back to NYC from London, its only fucking 10am here and i’m ready to join Romford in a crispy pint.

  61. Norfolk

    Seems to me that it’s a bit unfair to have a go at the GK and forget the fact that this is a team game, the forwards need to drop back to help the midfielders who need to do the same for the defence etc.
    All this to prevent the GK getting a battering.

    TBH the whole thing is extremely depressing.
    I get so little joy from AFC these days.

  62. N5

    “Fuck off your fat, I’ll throw you in the river”

    Ha ha, I ended up having a coughing fit then after laughing so hard. 😀 😀 😀 😀

  63. salparadisenyc

    I’m with you Jim, i’ll handle this day on UK time. 2.5 hours and i’m punching the F IN. I expect the same from that intrepid Midwest Goooon.

  64. Ashwin Gunner


    “Thats the problem with coming back to NYC from London, its only fucking 10am here and i’m ready to join Romford in a crispy pint.”

    Its 8 PM here and I am still working 🙁

  65. Arsenal 1886-2006

    Arsenal finances released today.

    Arsenal Holdings plc Results for the year ended 31 May 2014


    * Group profit before tax was GBP4.7 million (2013 – GBP6.7 million).

    * The group’s total turnover amounted to GBP301.9 million (2013 – GBP280.4

    * Turnover from football increased to GBP298.7 million (2013 – GBP242.8
    million) driven mainly by Premier League broadcasting, the FA Cup run and
    commercial activity including a full year of the Club’s extended
    partnership with Emirates.

    * Taking account of increased costs, principally wage costs, operating
    profits (before depreciation and player trading) from football increased to
    GBP62.1 million (2013 – GBP25.2 million).

    * Wage costs of GBP166.4 million (2013 – GBP154.5 million) represented 55.7%
    of football revenue (2013 – 63.6%).

    * Profit on sale of player registrations was reduced to GBP6.9 million (2013
    – GBP47.0 million).

    * Low key year for property business with revenues of GBP3.2 million (2013 –
    GBP37.5 million including sale of the market housing site at Queensland
    Road) and operating profit of GBP0.4 million (2013 – GBP4.4 million).

    * The Group has no short-term debt and continues to be in a robust financial
    position with cash balances, excluding those amounts designated as debt
    service reserves, of GBP173.3 million (2013 – GBP119.6 million).


  66. Thomas

    You mentioned as said before the Wigan game we lost 3-2 and also the Liverpool game that ended 4-4. What a fucking joke that was. Defense was all over the palce. Silvestre, Djourou Lmao. Good job Wenger.

  67. cladicus


    9:40 a.m. where I’m sitting. “I finally have all the time I ever wanted to read this blog!” -drops glasses and steps on them.

  68. andy1886

    Cash Reserves of £173m before player trading this summer, leaves with circa £120m left after net spend of £53.8m (transferleague.co.uk).

    Should be enough for reinforcements come January 😉

  69. Cesc Appeal

    ‘I do wonder how much Arsenal look at videos of the opposition in their preparation for games like the one they played on Tuesday,’ Scholes wrote in the Evening Standard.
    ‘Watching the match it seemed like they hand’t given Dortmund much more than a moment’s consideration.
    ‘All Wenger and Arsenal appear to think about is how they are going to approach the game and how they will play.
    ‘Which is fine if you win all the time but not if – like Arsenal – you haven’t made it out of the Champions League’s last 16 for the previous four seasons.’

    – Paul Scholes. Spot on. Stating the obvious to most Arsenal fans with a brain, but spot on.

  70. Cesc Appeal

    So weird that I was saying about the “length of grass” excuse earlier, more in jest than anything….but sure enough, Arsene Wenger everyone

  71. Jim Lahey

    @Andy – That would take into account that Arsenal paid and recieved all transfer costs immediately, which is rarely the case, If was started with £173m this summer, I would be suprised if more than 25m cash was taken from those reserves.

    As most is generally paid over a longer period of time.

  72. TWOofFIVE


    Bellerin Chambers Kos Gibbs

    Flamini Chamberlain

    Sanchez Ozil Rosicky


    That team dispatches Villa!
    Subs: Ospina, Mert, Hayden, Carzola, Campbell, Podolski

    Mert is a risk against Delph and Agbonlawhore
    Bellerin is better than the Dortmund game, I have seen him 3times this yr for the u21 and I rate him.

  73. Arsene's Nurse

    £173m in the bank. Revenue up by about £60m. Wage bill at £166.4m up 12 million! but as a percentage of our revenue down to 55.7% from 63.6%

    Honestly we are flying financially. Anyone who complains about money or not being able to afford wages or buying players needs to give themselves a slap.

    I expect the current wage bill to be around £175-180m. What are we getting for that? Not value for money that’s for sure.

  74. Cesc Appeal


    He said something about the length of the grass affecting teams that like to play football and he knows managers tell staff not to cut the grass if they are playing a passing side.

  75. TitsMcgee

    Change in formation will help us plaster the lesser teams but will mean hell-all when we play the bigger squads which is our downfall anyway.

    I suspect he will change it at some point soon if he keeps dropping points to the minnows.

  76. Arsene's Nurse

    andy1886 September 19, 2014 14:52:54

    Cash Reserves of £173m before player trading this summer, leaves with circa £120m left after net spend of £53.8m (transferleague.co.uk).

    Should be enough for reinforcements come January 😉

    These financial results are in lieu – they cover 2013-14.. They bear no resemblance to what we actually have in the bank at the moment or what we spend on players or their wages today.

    Also you don’t buy players like you do milk and bread in the supermarket. Transfer fees are paid over a number of years. Also Transfermarket are out by about £10m because they haven’t taken into account the Fabregas and Vela money. Their buying evaluations are also high.

  77. salparadisenyc

    “I expect the current wage bill to be around £175-180m. What are we getting for that? Not value for money that’s for sure. ”

    Really telling when you stack it against the side we played on Tuesday with a wage bill half that large.

  78. TitsMcgee

    ‘I do wonder how much Arsenal look at videos of the opposition in their preparation for games like the one they played on Tuesday,’ Scholes wrote in the Evening Standard.
    ‘Watching the match it seemed like they hand’t given Dortmund much more than a moment’s consideration.
    ‘All Wenger and Arsenal appear to think about is how they are going to approach the game and how they will play.
    ‘Which is fine if you win all the time but not if – like Arsenal – you haven’t made it out of the Champions League’s last 16 for the previous four seasons.’”

    From Scholes’ mouth to God’s ears.

    I mean it really is a travesty we are saddled with this guy for “at least” 2.5 more years.

    “Go out an express yourselves” seems to be our only “tactic”.

  79. TitsMcgee

    Our wage bill does feel massively high for the lack of overall quality and quantity in some areas in the squad”

    Socialist wage structure doesn’t help.

    Ridiculous amount of player’s making much more than they would be at any other club. Even the bigger ones.

  80. andy1886

    True Jim, amortisation or whatever it’s called. Either way no financial excuse for failing to fill the obvious holes in the squad. It’s either Wenger failing to do his job or someone higher up not letting him do it. More fuel to the theory that the BoD are happy to come fourth and take the CL money until the end of time.

  81. the_real_andy

    at the end of the day it’s impossible to bench ozil. you can’t pay 42 mio for a guy who’s sitting on the bench. that’s a sum allowing someone to build a team around him instead of trying to integrate him in a team. for me it would be best to play

    chambers, kos, mert, gibbs
    wil, rambo
    ox, oz, sanch

    wil and rambo with clear defensive tasks to do. without any tactical advice they won’t work for each other but I’m sure if you give them a plan they will work out

  82. Goongoonergone

    We might just be playing in Europa this season after we hit third spot in the round robin.
    With the tactical imbecile that is Wenger, don’t count us out of Europa.

  83. Cesc Appeal

    Is it possible to shackle Ramsey more? Not ideal but then our idiotic manager has left us in a “not ideal” (being kind) situation in central midfield.

    But he has the stamina and athleticism to maybe do a bit of a job for us there.

    Really clutching here, Coquelin isn’t good enough, Arteta isn’t good enough, Flamini isn’t good enough, Diaby isn’t physically able to play that role in more ways than one.

    Maybe a 4-1-2-1-2 for Villa?
    ——-Back 5
    Wilshere, Rosicky
    Sanchez, Welbeck

  84. Bergkamp63

    They could even try something like wilshere in front of the back four with a diamond like midfield, if the full backs go forward to support Ox & Sanchez we should still have enough cover ?

    chambers, kos, mert, gibbs

    ox, sanch


  85. cladicus


    Would love to see the 4-1-2-1-2. One of my personal favorites. Welbeck and Sanchez would both excel with a partner up top, and diamonds are a striker’s best friend!

  86. Bergkamp63

    gambon September 19, 2014 15:54:51

    Lol £207m in the bank…..no DM and no WC striker.


    It does make you wonder what exactly is it we are waiting for ?

  87. Cesc Appeal



    It’s more the middle I’m trying to sort in my head.

    Ramsey is out of form right now, so maybe it’s the best time to say, do a Sven Bender for us, lots of energy, lots of running, his tackle rate last year was pretty good old Aaron. I don’t WANT to stop him being B2B but Wenger has left us with really very little other options.

    Having said that, I fully expect to see a 4-1-4-1 and Arteta in the holding roll tomorrow because #WengerLogic

  88. Cesc Appeal


    I just think as we’ve said over and over Wenger is a world class ditherer, and changes his mind from one day to the other.

    He wants Carvalho, he’s not sure, thinks about it, price goes up £2 Million – he thinks sod it between them Arteta, Wilshere, Flamini and Diaby must be able to do a job.

  89. cladicus


    I honestly think Ramsey is a player that is willing to do a job. To not play Rosicky at this point is almost criminal, although I suspect he is being held back to save our asses down the line per usual.

    The crazy thing about the 4-1-4-1 is when the fullbacks bomb forward and we are hit on the counter, we are asking Arteta to cover more ground in 4 seconds than he does in one match.

  90. Arsene's Nurse

    “Our retail business made a strong start to the year but, as predicted, was held back in the second half by lower available stocks of replica kit as part of the planned transition from Nike to PUMA. The new five year kit partnership with PUMA did not come into force until after the financial year end and therefore no revenues or costs from this contract have been included in the profit and loss account for 2013/14.

    Holy shit the Puma money doesn’t form part of this statement. That means you can add another £18m to our yearly revenue.

    “At the balance sheet date, the Group’s total cash and bank balances amounted to GBP 207.9 million (2013-GBP 153.5 million), inclusive of debt service reserve balances of GBP 34.6 million (2013-GBP 33.8 million). The Group’s overall net debt was GBP 32.6 million (2013-GBP 93.2 million).”

    So as Gambon says we actually have £207.9m in the bank.

    That includes the reserve account for servicing debt. So that £173m is effectively just a big cash pile that is doing nothing. We could spend £150m and it would have no impact on us what so ever.

    Don’t complain about oil rich clubs and sugar daddies – we have more money in the bank than ALL the other PL clubs put together.

    Yet they are still increasing ticket prices. Season ticket holder = mug.

  91. andy1886

    Basically Wenger has screwed himself because he doesn’t have the right blend of players to come up with a system that he can use with his limited grasp of tactics, so there’s no real point in debating what would work, Wenger isn’t up to the job.

    Most of his earlier successes were based on a variation of 4-4-2 which given decent players just about anyone can make work. Take the Invincibles, keeper and standard back four, Gilberto and PV4 in the middle with Pires on the left and Freddie on the right. Okay you can suggest that D10 and TH14 could be better described as being part of a 4-4-1-1 but the number 9/ number 10 roles have usually employed a more predatory player (Henry) and a more creative player (Bergkamp). Same as Cole/Sheringham or Beardsley/Shearer combination.

    Thing is we don’t have the strikers for that system, or the defensive midfielder. Then you have Ozil who really isn’t anywhere near Bergkamp in terms of influence on the game or goal threat.

    4-4-2 is really the default for the tactically defficient. That and the great players we had made Wenger look a better coach than he really was. As soon as he reverted to 4-3-3 and other variations, abandoned pace and power for tippy tappy football we and he were well and truly screwed. As he now claims that the way we currently play is his football ‘philosophy’ it doesn’t matter who he buys, where we are now is as good as it gets under Wenger.

    I just hope that he doesn’t fancy making it 25 years when his contract finally expires.