Brilliant message from Ivan about the future, but what about the ‘now’?

by .

GUD PRzing

GUD PRzing

Ivan has come out on the charm offensive before the AGM that’s coming up. The article that’s landed on feels more like is an impassioned defence of his crew and the vision they all share in the post Wenger era.

Interview here.

If you want the one liner jist… it’s…

‘Plans are in action to modernise the club in time for the Wenger succession, but it’s hard’

There are loads of interesting comments in there which make me feel positive about where the club is trying to go. Many of his quips almost act as counter arguments to some of the things people say on the web to defend Wenger, lots corroborate the things we’ve been telling you for years about the rotten set up of the playing side (classic senior management ‘we see what you see, don’t worry, it’s in hand’) and finally, just a reassertion that he and his team are more than corporate monsters who love a pay cheque… they’re fans. Which I guess is absolutely key to running a sports club.


Ivan on patience…

Nobody’s patient in football, so I’m not sure I really like the term ‘patience’. I don’t think this is a patient club, I don’t think we have patient people – we certainly don’t have complacent people. You’re never in an environment where there’s patience. I think what you have to do though, is have a very clear understanding of where we’re going and how you plan to get there.

Pedro on Ivan’s patience…

I think we’ve been more patient with Arsene Wenger than any club in the top echelons of football would have been. We’ve been patient with his aging backroom team. With been patient with their failings. We’ve been patient with a team not willing to race ahead of the future curve. I can understand why. If Stan loves Arsene like a son and can’t see the failings, you’re going to struggle. I think Ivan has been patient because he knows the only way he’ll ever get a crack and turning us into a super club is when Wenger stops re-signing those damn deals.

Ivan on losing…

It’s not my job to be screaming on Mondays and be feeling up and down – it’s my job to go home quietly, scream and shout at home, have a sleepless night, come in in the morning and say, ‘Remember where we’re going, remember how we’re getting there’.

Pedro on Ivan losing…

Bar the scary thought of Ivan going home and busting out the slipper because of a late penalty miss in the Carling Cup, I think what this is telling you is 1) He’s a fan. He read the blogs. He’ll search his name on Twitter. He’ll tell @AlanSugar he’s a mug from his private Twitter handle. He’ll analyse what people are saying because the criticism burns. 2) He feels your pain when you’re watching Wenger send a side that’s incapable of taking down a top team, but he knows there’s a plan in place to sooth the pain when Wenger is gone.

You could say I’m spinning that… but look, if he’s saying he’s a fan, what he’s actually telling you is he sees all we see and even worse f0r him, he knows in great detail what a shit show it is behind the scenes.

Ivan on Wenger…

So much of the attention on a football club is around an individual and that’s very understandable at Arsenal because we have a giant who’s managing us. Arsène has been a fantastic driver and has put the club in a great, great position. The biggest challenge we’re going to face as a club is that, when that transition from Arsène to the next manager of our football club happens – and I don’t know when that’s going to be – that we come through that strongly.

Pedro on Ivan talking about Wenger…

Wow. This was really, really interesting because it’s layered with so much subtext. Firstly, he’s making a point that so much of our IP is wrapped up in one man. Which is totally true and totally not where you need to be as a club. We don’t have an infrastructure in place in the backroom team, which is why they’re bringing in jigsaw pieces like Joncker and currently redundant pieces like Shad Forsythe. For me, what he’s saying is firstly, we’ll never have a giant at the club again… or we’ll have a giant that we’ll own more control of. The second part of the subtext here, for me, is… ‘we’re already laying the foundations for the post Wenger apocalypse, so it won’t be an apocalypse’.

Whether that last sentence is true is the ultimate judgement day moment…

Ivan on success…

The hunger for success is immediate. The moment you get away from that euphoria of the moment, the next question is, ‘How do we have more of that?’ That’s what everybody at this club is focused on. There’s no satisfaction in it – it’s what do we do now.

Pete on Ivan’s success…


Ivan on the future…

We’re investing many million pounds into developing London Colney, our main training centre – our athletic development, our analytics, our scouting, all these things are part of making a modern football club.

We need to make sure that we’re absolutely ahead of the curve in all of those areas.

We’ve seen with clubs like Borussia Dortmund or Atletico Madrid that you can compete at the very top of the game and I wouldn’t be doing this job if I didn’t believe we could compete at the very top level.

Pete on Ivan’s future vision…

He’s basically saying he knows it’s not working at the moment, but they’re trying to make amends with lots of investment. I also LOVE the part about Atletico Madrid and Dortmund. That to me shows he is thinking about other clubs and other models. Both of those clubs show that it’s not always the biggest wage bill that wins out, sometimes it’s the smartest thought pool. Gaming the system, hunting out that niche market in Romania, finding that extra 2% in recovery planning, having a smarter analytics approach or setting up with a new tactical system the big guns can’t deal with. We’ve underachieved in so many areas over the years while other smaller clubs have thrived. The main reason behind that is the lack of fresh blood combined with the lack of ambition / capabilities amongst the old boys club the run the show in the backroom team.

Our lack of success over the years hasn’t all been about money. It’s been about other clubs having smarter set ups. It’s good to know we’re thinking about that. It’s good to know there’s probably an element of envy going on there. It’s good to read a CEO taking on all the issues fans have and addressing them… because sometimes, when you’re watching Arsene Wenger defend the indefensible, it’s tough to understand the clubs strategy.

That interview made me feel good.

The big elephant in the room is this… we hear the strategy, we get that there are plans afoot… but they mean nothing when you have the king of the blockers managing your playing side with a blocker army there to defend him all the way.

… maybe it’ll unravel for Arsene before his three years are up. Who knows. At least we have an admittance of the failings and confirmation there’s a plan in place to address them.

What did you think if the interview? Let us know in the comments!


396 Responses to “Brilliant message from Ivan about the future, but what about the ‘now’?”

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  1. MidwestGun

    Cesc –
    Campbell is a victim of the 4-1-4-1, imo. Maybe now with Ozil’s injury he will get a look. If we rotate Sanchez. Costa Rica played 4-2-3-1. I don’t think JC is a savior by any means but I wish he was getting a fair chance. Would have him ahead of Podolski, Santi, and Rosicky on left wing. He still has full game energy issues and needs to work on his final thru ball passes but he’s young. He’s definately not afraid to shoot tho. Something I feel is lacking in our starting midfield at the moment barring Sanchez.

  2. Cesc Appeal


    Don’t get me started on the 4-1-4-1 again.

    I’d like to see him given a go, if for no other point to try and raise his value or maintain it before Wenger inevitably sells him.

  3. Dissenter

    ““I’ll come back to London and we’ll see. The doctor said I have something swollen between the knees.” Rosicky

    Its called a hard on Thomas 🙂 ”

    You dirty dirty man 😉
    Swollen between the thighs – hard on
    Swollen between the knees – erect equine phallus

  4. Cesc Appeal


    Got a horrible feeling it’s only a matter of time before those tendons go for Kozz though.

    Then brace yourself for the GeoffArsenal’s of this world to say “well we’ve got Monreal to play CB and Hayden as well – not the end of the world. The players weren’t there in the summer.”

  5. MidwestGun

    Tunny –
    Naaa……….. I had to look myself. Internationals friendlies are usually boring so I didn’t pay much attention. Gonna watch Germany and Ireland tho in the qualifiers.

  6. Keyser

    “In both examples, all hypothetical now of course but had we spent what we had, had we made the additions we sorely needed to and for no logical reason refused to then others spending would have matter little.”

    This simply ignores how we built those sides to begin with and the problem we faced in keeping them from leaving.

    By the end of the year Nasri wanted a new contract, so you keep money aside for that, say enough to double it, Citeh offer 4 times what he was on.

    That year we blood Koscielny as first choice, Szczesny breaks through and Wilshere is almost ever present, we add Gervinho and Ox.

    Fabregas isn’t convinced by them, neither does he care that they’re simply getting the same oppurtunity we gave him, he wants what Barcelona can offer him.

    That’s the problem we had, we had whatever money we had to add to the team, but it was never enough to convince the players we had to stay, players who had offers from better placed teams.

    Those are the margins we’ve been stuck between for the past decade, and we’re still stuck between them because 2 million pound Fabregas was far more valuable to us at the club, then his transfer fee would be in replacing him.

  7. kwik fit


    Monreal is never a CB in a million years. It would have to be Hayden if chambers isn’t available . I agree that Kos lasting through to the Jan window is a long shot.

  8. R.S.P.C.Arsenal

    Would love to have a new manager….
    But we are lumbered with him.
    You know as well as I that he will pick his successor , an that will be a fella from Croatia ? I believe who he has gone on record to say he would like here.

  9. Cesc Appeal


    I can’t believe how shabbily put together this squad is. So, so obviously deficient in a lot of areas.

  10. Dissenter

    It’s just become public knowledge that Kevin Strootman has been on 25k weekly at Roma.
    It sure puts are wage structure into proper perspective.

  11. Cesc Appeal


    So many examples of that over Europe. Our wage structure is bonkers. Wenger’s ideologies are awful.


    Sadly yep. Why as I say every year we’ll face the same failings so best to just accept it.

  12. Ozy

    Although I agree that the wages in England are astronomical, the cost of living in England is much higher than in Italy.

    Let’s take Rome, since somebody mentioned Strootman. Compared to London, prices are 25% higher in London, rent is 67% higher, groceries 23.7% higher.. etc. Those are big numbers. The gap in wages is somewhat understandable then.

    BUT like I said, we pay players here astronomical wages.

  13. MidwestGun

    Al –
    Ya Ireland built a wall. Germany seriously lacking some creativity. Gotze as a number 10 is pretty stagnant. Still Germany almost scored that scorcher of a volley didn’t see who it was. The LB I think.

  14. babatunde

    Keyser, I believed that if we had offered nasri 110 a week that he allegedly asked for at first, we would have kept him for at least a year more. If city then tried to pry him away after that, they would have had to pay around 40million to get him because he won’t be on the last year of his contract.

  15. Hitman

    That was Pedros worst post ever.
    Don’t understand his love in with Gazidis.

    Ivan is a useless c…

    He is a hopeless CEO. He is taking to long to sort things out… if he understands what the problems are. If he knows that it is shit show behind the scenes, why on earth did he give AW a suicidal 3 year contract to extent the problems for so long?

    He is meant to be the boss but the guy is a wimp.

  16. Dissenter

    Andre Schurlle about Jose Mourhino:
    “To him, finishing second is a failure. He doesn’t know the word ‘losing’. That’s how he holds his talk before the matches. His thinking is impressive – as impressive as the way he gets his message across.

    ‘He challenges you to be robust on the pitch, to play like a man. To commit a foul. I feel much better since joining Chelsea and I have become much more confident.”

    How many of our players can say this about Wenger. They mainly complement him on being supportive, like a father blah, blah. No one ever talks about how he’s improved heir game and turned them into killers.

    ‘to commit a foul” ?
    wow that’s thorough organization and planning.

  17. WengerEagle


    True, complacency can kick in like it did for France in the 2002 World Cup.

    Then again Spain did do a clean sweep of the Euros/World Cup for 4 years so you’d think that the motivation would be there for Germany to try and emulate them.

    Losing Lahm, Klose and even Mertesacker hasn’t helped their cause. Ozil to injury too and he’s crucial for them.

  18. Dissenter

    Wenger Eagle,
    Sorry to be a wet blanket
    Its just that when this German team rediscovers their groove, they’ll smash you guys at the Aviva Stadium
    When is the return leg?

  19. northern gooner


    The saints player has been given a 1 match ban.
    The dirty wigan bastard has been given a 6 month ban. Think it works out at 12 or 13 games.
    Even the police are involved but dont think anything will come of it.
    Can u believe an idiot who i work with blamed the saints player for not staying on his feet after the 1st punch.

  20. R.S.P.C.Arsenal


    Fella was right to stay down two minutes into a game,,,,

    Who would off expected the twst to follow up ?

    His own club should come out an fine him,,,,

    Every one will remember the final for the wrong read main!

  21. R.S.P.C.Arsenal


    Hand on heart I don’t know much about rugby, but I remember Eddie warring comentary which was so passionate about the game…
    An chariots ofariah
    Who was good supporter of arsenal…

  22. northern gooner


    There will be a big love in now saying he needs help to calm his temper and its out of character for him to do something like hit a bloke who cant defend himself.

    Are you having trouble posting on here.
    Its taking ages to refresh even though my internet connection is spot on.

  23. Keef Petrovic

    Jesus Mary and Joseph, Onlinegooner is being knobbled now, sounds like Untold..

    When Wenger finally leaves either by sacking/resignation/snuffing it (my money on the last in 2023) what will the AKB’s do then?

    Their cult leader will be gone, their religion tells them Arsenal will be useless and beyond salvation without him, perhaps they will need to take drastic action to save their souls

  24. ofebs

    Mourinho trains his players to go out there and brutalize the opposition – in short to make war…

    Arsene trains his players to cuddle and embrace the opposition – in short to make love not war…

    We know the strategy that’s working in the context of the premier league.

  25. Godfather

    All of you clowns crowing over Klopp have failed to realize that he is struggling with only one monster team in the Bundesliga. What would he do in the EPL against the likes of financial powerhouses like United, City and Chelshyt. And not to talk do all the others teams who fight you like rabid animals for every point on any EPL weekend.

    Like Van Gaal is finding out, the EPL is a league like none other so be careful what you wish for …

  26. Dark Hei

    (classic senior management ‘we see what you see, don’t worry, it’s in hand’)

    Ok now we know why Pedro is so peeved with Wenger. “Wenger” is a persona of his boss at the work place.

  27. Rosicky@Arsenal

    People criticizing wenger dont see five star Heavy weight wc winner german team losing on all fronts in Euro 2016.

    Jogi Lowe humuliated by poor performance but no one ask his sacking.

    Germany also won the wc After 24 years and no European cup Either since 10 yeats or so and v are aaking for wengers head inspite of landing the FA cup last year.


  28. Wallace

    1994/95 George Graham’s last season – 12th (51 pts)

    1995/96 Bruce Rioch – 5th (63pts)

    1996/97 Arsene Wenger – 3rd (68pts)

    1997/98 Arsene Wenger – 1st (78pts)

    completely baffled by the suggestion Wenger got lucky and was only capitalising on the good work of George Graham and Rioch. Graham’s last season in charge was a f*ckin’ car crash.

  29. Wallace

    “I thought Jack Wilshere had two very good games for England during the last week. I would go one step further than that and say that, at the moment, Wilshere is England’s best player.

    The penny has dropped and he has added another dimension to his game. He has always been capable of that intricate passing game. Now he can play the ball long, too. The quality of some of those passes into Wayne Rooney in Estonia was very high.

    You cannot underestimate the importance of eye-contact between a midfielder and a striker in those situations. Wilshere mentioned it in one of the interviews that he gave and I would agree that it is critical.

    With the great forwards I played with, it was often the case that you did not need a call or a signal. Often, it was just a look and it was enough to know where they were going. Wilshere and Rooney seemed to have that.”

    – Paul Scholes

  30. Thorough

    Typical akb Wallace thinking thinking Wenger God for jumping four places (5th-1st) in two years, yet think Bruce Ricoh who jumped 7places in 1year (12th-5th) is a terrible manager.

  31. Dark Hei

    After some thought, I think Ivan is indeed preparing for life without Wenger, and Wenger himself is preparing the club for life without him.

    We have 3 star appointments to our staff so far; Jonker, Shad and now McDermott. It seems that a new infrastructure is being put in place and Wenger is adapting to this new structure so that when he goes, the manager position/coaching team will just be another cog in the machinery.

    The chance that Wenger will be sacked before his 3-year contract is up is now close to zero. While we all guess that Wenger wouldn’t win anything major, he is also the type that will not blow up spectacularly; so unless we fall out of the CL, you can expect him around. Especially when the club on a whole is going through transition; the board is never going to let him go while the club goes through it.

    As usual, you can say that Arsenal is conservative in its approach to change. It is basically 3 years of transition.

  32. Jeff


    If you want to cherry pick with statistics, two can play that game:

    Not counting community shield cups because there was no such thing in George’s time:

    George Graham: 7 trophies in 9 years = 0.77 trophies per year
    Arsene Wenger: 8 trophies in 18 years = 0.44 trophies per year

    You have to be telepathically capable to surmise that if George Graham continued instead of Wenger that he would not have been more successful than Wenger because just like you can find “excuses” for Wenger, I am allowed to go back and find “excuses” for Graham.

    In fact, I happen to think that in the years when the oil men took over and were throwing money at players, a less gung-ho approach (Graham) as opposed to Wenger’s one-dimensional attack, attack, attack may have served us better against the superior teams and we might have managed to nick a trophy or two. But Wenger never changed to suit the changing environment or the landscape. So he got clobbered and is still getting clobbered by the big sides.

    Your argument that the defensive force Wenger inherited had nothing to do with the success he had is just laughable.

  33. Thank you and goodnight


    I agree 1000% .Either he was very lucky in his early years with just needing a tweak or 2 to contribute to his success…..or he was a genius and the last 5-6 years is because in actual fact wenger has lost it and has been suffering from dementia

  34. Jeff

    *Correction, I think there was a thing called Charity Shield instead of Community Shield back then but I forget the rules for being in that. If you want to count those as well you might as well count the Emirates cups as well. 😆

  35. Wallace


    were you actually ‘lucky’ enough to watch George Graham’s last side? like Stoke on a bad day. f*ckin’ awful. fairly certain no Arsenal fan from that time was expecting any more success under Graham.

  36. Dark Hei


    You are putting words in Wallace’s post. He never said that Bruce Rioch is terrible. He is just putting the achievements in perspective.

    All charges of Wenger getting “lucky” in his early years is just a misguided attempt to rationalise the current lack of success.

    Perhaps the simple answer is that the league is more competitive than ever. Managers are getting smarter and clubs are getting richer. Wenger and Arsenal are not changing fast enough to meet these new challenges.

    Take for example. between the period of 1998 to 2000, Arsenal was in a rebuilding stage, winning nothing in those years. Would they have that luxury in today’s environment? We lost Petit, Overmars and Anelka in that period. I believed if that was today, we would have been hard pressed to maintain the no. 2 league position, and kept Viera and Bergkamp. We probably wouldn’t even been able to sign Campbell on a free. Henry and Pires might not have the platform to perform and excel without the teammates around them and will eventually pressed to get transferred.

    What worked in the past is not going to work in the current environment. But let’s not take away past achievements.

  37. Jeff


    I think his biggest shortcoming is the inability to change. He found a way to win in the early years by bringing his own brand of football (attack with everything you’ve got) and he brought in players that could do that. At the same time he had a good enough defence to see that we didn’t get caught out. That backbone of defence managed themselves whilst Wenger got the credit.

    But two things went against him – big time – in chronological order.

    1. Our defensive backbone began to age and retire but Wenger was never much interested in defence because he underestimated their value. So he didn’t bother to replenish the defensive side of things as well as he did with midfield and attack.

    2. Oil men came and brought in players that could exploit (1) above. That was the time to change his ways. He failed to do that. I think Graham would have been more suited to ride us through that era.

    Today, Wenger is still playing the same tired old game and for 10 years he tried and tried and tried to no avail. By hook or by crook we managed to win (albeit with utmost difficulty and strife) one measly FA cup against a mid-table team. Not good enough.

  38. Jeff


    One swallow doesn’t a summer make. Look at the big picture, the trophy count and what has ensued under Wenger. Look at the facts as they are in the last 10 or so years and you will see the pattern I’m talking about.

  39. Wallace


    i have nothing against Rioch. his teams played good football. but like Moyes at Utd, was a little bit out if his depth at a big club.

  40. R.S.P.C.Arsenal


    Yes was last night
    Like u checked ISP
    It was good,,,

    Began to lose paitence with it taking ages ,,,,


    Look at the 2-0 ..2-1 bet with arsenal, man city , an Man U or Liverpool this weekend

  41. Drey

    “Arsene Wenger’s preferred
    successor to his Arsenal throne,
    Dragan Stojkovic, has revealed that
    he wants a move to the Premier
    League after spending six years in
    the J-League with Nagoya
    The Yugoslavian, who played under
    Wenger when the Frenchman was
    part of the coaching unit for two
    years in Japan, is a huge fan of the
    64-year-old and wants to emulate
    his success by making a move to
    the Premier League. He is currently
    unemployed after refusing to
    extend his contract, having secured
    Grampus their first J-League in their
    Stojkovic is now looking for bigger
    challenges and with Wenger ready
    to retire in three years’ time, a
    move to Arsenal in a coaching
    capacity, grooming him for the big
    future is not a distant possibility.
    “I respect English football very
    much and the Premier League is an
    incredible league,” Stojkovic told
    “Of course [I would like to manage
    in the Premier League]. Why not? I
    believe I have enough knowledge
    about modern football to be part of
    the development of English
    “I have had a few meetings [with
    English clubs] but I am still waiting
    for a good offer,” he added.
    Wenger had previously earmarked
    him as a suitable candidate for
    Arsenal in an interview. However,
    with the level of competition as it is
    and the amount of money being
    put into the game, it will be difficult
    for a man to come in from a
    different continent and adjust to the
    rigours of Europe.
    “I would love Stojkovic to be my
    successor, there are a hundred
    reasons for that. Our ideas are the
    same and we both strive for perfect
    football. I knew he was going to
    have teams playing attacking
    football with many passes,” Wenger
    had said in 2011.”


  42. Wallace


    “At the same time he had a good enough defence to see that we didn’t get caught out. That backbone of defence managed themselves whilst Wenger got the credit.”

    but as i said yesterday, the first-choice defence in the second Double-winning side(probably Wenger’s best side) were all signed by Wenger.

    i think we see things so differently it’s probably best to agree to disagree.

  43. Jeff


    I think that even with that argument there is still no nothing to write home about because Wenger eventually (obviously) had all “his” own players in the side and he could mould them exactly as he wanted. And for a while it was fine – nobody is denying that. It’s later, when it started to go all wrong. To simply say it was down to other circumstances is just short sighted.

    Other teams were finding us out. They were deploying tactics to beat us – even the lower teams. As strong as we were (with the invincibles), we could and should have done better with that team. That is nothing but Wenger’s lacking in football tactics that we couldn’t do better. And now of course we are still struggling because that same philosophy is carrying on.

    Yes, I’ll agree to disagree.

  44. Dark Hei


    Well it is up to the individual. I like Arsenal football, up to 2008, Cesc and Nasri were playing beautiful football even though they got just 68 points. We were pretty bad in 2008 but even then our football is pretty.

    Post Cesc, we chalked points up by being efficient. The most glaring aspect missing is the fluidity in attack. It has gone.

    Can we have it back please? I don’t mind losing to Chelsea as long as we are beautiful and dynamic to watch.

  45. Jeff

    Dark Hei,

    For me, beautiful football with no glory at the end goes against the ethos of what the game is all about. I look at it as a sporting tournament first and foremost but if we play beautiful football as well that is only a bonus.

    Given the choice, I’d much rather play ugly football and win trophies than the other way round. But as you say, it’s up to the individual.

  46. Jeff

    Dark Hei,

    Unfortunately yes. We thrash about a lot, pass a lot with no end product against a well defended side. Against open sides, we can still turn it on but it’s becoming more and more rare these days.

  47. Le Prof


    You need help.

    You don’t know much about football fullstop. Didn’t know about the Charity Shield or what it took to play in it?

    Stick to IT would you love?

  48. Jeff

    Wallace, I’d take the beautiful game over the ugly one if it produces trophies (e.g. Barcelona) but we just don’t have the players for that. And even Barcelona with their dazzling array of personnel, the slightest drop in form in one or two players and the whole thing collapses. It’s very difficult to maintain that sort of play all the time but if you try it without the players that can pull it off, you will get clobbered.

  49. Kirk

    Interesting take on IG but you failed to mention he is getting paid £2m + a year and for that money he will happily sit and be Kronke’s puppet which is what he is. He has no guts to stand up to the regime and I guess you cant blame him getting paid what he does. He is not a football man and certainly not an Arsenal man so I wouldn’t get your hopes up that he is the answer o all our problems.