Is the change at Arsenal real?

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Happy good Monday to you!

I had a great post lined up. Then work got in the way. I can’t sneak off yet and write posts. Don’t worry though, I’ll learn the tricks soon enough. They won’t hold me back…

All I wanted to say today is…


Which is excellent. It puts us in the driving seat for second place. Like it or lump it, that’s pretty major progress considering how terrible our start was. I think that’d be the first time in 10 years we’ve hit those dizzy heights.

You really need to enjoy that. It’s runners up. It’s not a win, but it’s getting closer.

Again, the trouble is that it absconds Wenger from a full inquiry into how bad the start of the year was… and it kind of upsets, because if he’d paid attention and done thing properly from the start, it wouldn’t have been such a cake walk for Chelsea.

He really needed a Schneiderlin and a Gabriel. Hopefully, this summer, he’ll learn and address what he needs early.

We need a keeper. Cech would be perfect.

We need a Schneiderlin. People are saying we don’t because of Coquelin. Please. If Coquelin had been discovered at the start of the year, he’d have been broken by now. We need two players who can play that role. Those two would be perfect.

We also need someone to replace Theo, who, let’s be honest, is on the way out. Hopefully that’s Dybala.

The rest seems to be sorting itself out, slowly. We seem to have more of a game plan about us… even though it’s landed in spurts. I’d like to be convinced we’ve turned the corner, but we still have a Monaco in the locker. We still have a Spurs there too. Still, we’ll find out against an in form United and Chelsea in a few weeks.

The fitness has improved. Part of me hopes Shad has got more say and he’s working magic. The cynic worries our players get injured in 3 month cycles… and so many of our players only landed back in the team at Christmas. Still, the players look strong and fit at the moment. Be interesting to see what happens when we come back next year.

There are loads of big questions. I do remember feeling buoyant like this the last 3 years running though. I do remember predicting in early December this would happen and we’d all feel like this.

So, positives everywhere… but the cynic is still there. Lurking. Is this really change? Or is it just a disappointing season wrapped in a great finish. As per usual…

We’ll wait and see.

More from me, tomorrow, in the morning.

Have a grand evening.


242 Responses to “Is the change at Arsenal real?”

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  1. daz

    The grass is always greener for some people I guarantee had giroud gone to a rival instead people would be saying why didn’t we sign him he’s a level above what we have

  2. Joe

    Would I be upset? Not at all.

    But if we beat Chelsea and they still win the league, do you want a trophy for beating them?

    Big picture mate. Big picture.

  3. tunnygriffboy


    If you go on youtube and have a look at all the goals he’s scored for us he’s scored some quality goals, all sorts with a different array of skills. That’s without all his assists. I think we underrate him, i think a lot of it is because he lacks pace. He always works hard and is looking to make himself better. I think he’s much maligned.

  4. Joe

    If we beat Chelsea and it guarantees we win the league then it’s a huge win. If we beat them and they win the league does that win gain us more than 3 points or is it the same as beating qpr or villa?

    It’s the context.

  5. Joe

    Moral victories are for small clubs like Tottenham. We shouldn’t be celebrating wins over Chelsea like we have beaten some giant. Arsenal are giants. Just need wenger to leave to get back to being proper giants

  6. Dan Ahern

    Giroud is in great form and has definitely improved his game. For one he effectively uses his body/strength much more, and he also gave up the histrionics whenever he’s fouled. And of course his finishing is much better of late.

  7. Wallace


    you think Cavani at 28 comes to the Premiership and improves on what Giroud is doing this season?

  8. Joe

    Maybe cavani being as talented as he is scores v Monaco? Scores v Tottenham? Scores v man united? Play him and giroud instead of wellbeck who works hard but never scores

  9. Cesc Appeal

    We definitely have the makings a great squad here, but what we have to remember is no one else is going to stand still, United will invest heavily again, City will have a new manager and will invest heavily, Mourinho has a pretty complete squad but I think he might add a big buy this summer, a Pogba or Bale type, Liverpool will spend…it really is important we don’t blow how well we’re doing right now out of proportion and let it damage us going forward.

    Other teams improving, injuries, form, tactics, multiple competitions all of these mean we still need to add quality and also take a good look at our squad and ask who actually contributes and who just appears to on paper.

    We’ve been saying ‘so close’ for years and years now, would be nice if now, having serious financial clout and no players in perilous contract situations, we could actually take the next step.

    Think just a Cech, Schneiderlin and then a great buy like Reus or Dybala and we will be set to challenge.

    Then it’s a case of the onus being on Wenger and the fitness plan then.

  10. MidwestGun

    Moral victories are for small clubs like Tottenham. We shouldn’t be celebrating wins over Chelsea 
    Say what? We’ve never beaten Mourinho, Fabregas is on their team, they won’t want to lose on their run in most likely trying to pull off a draw, they humiliated us as early as last season, Mourinho is a big talking jackass.
    Excuse me if I celebrate the shit out of beating them and their racist fans if we beat them.
    They will he competing to sign some of our same targets and will be our biggest competition next season most likely. There’s my “context”. So no its not the same as beating Villa.

    You make some good points regarding big picture, Joe , but that one is b.s.

  11. Joe

    Why has wenger never won back to backs?

    Because he gets on his high horse and thinks it’s good enough as teams around adapt and change constantly. Jose get rid of mata sung cesc. Get rid of Torres sign costa. Needed a CF signed Remy

    Sorry for using Chelsea as an example but they currently are top so are the best example to use.

    Could use every Man U team that won the title the year after we did.

  12. Cesc Appeal


    Yeah, whoever in that sort of mould, wasn’t saying specifically those two but I do feel we need someone to take that wide slot and make it their own.

    Was more the point of I’m seeing so many Arsenal fans talking about it being no big deal if we don’t sign anybody because of how we’re playing now…worrying.

  13. Joe

    Do you think Chelsea care if we beat them and they win the title?

    Do you think cesc will care if we beat them if he lifts his first pl title?

    It”ll be victory over a Chelsea team that has had our number for years with Jose in charge and their favs are chav scum.

    But sorry if I’m not going to be celebrating like we won a trophy by beating Chelsea. I’ll be proud and stoked but in the bigger picture it means nothing unless it leads us to winning the league this season because next season is next season and wig knows what it holds.

  14. MidwestGun

    Ummm if we can’t celebrate victories over top teams, when do we celebrate
    exactly? We have to start showing we can beat them on a regular basis. We have eliminated the tennis scores this year. So that’s an improvement.

    I’m as cynical as the next person at times but if you can’t enjoy the ride….. good luck waiting for another invincible season. A victory over Chelsea would be sign of improvement, imo.

  15. Joe


    I’ll say it again. We are The Arsenal.

    We don’t need moral victories.

    It’s like Tottenham who bang on about beating us yet finish below us every season.

    We should just beat Chelsea because we are the arsenal, not because they are Chelsea,have Jose and cesc.

    We are better than them and if we had any one bar wenger we could beat them.

  16. MidwestGun

    I’s not a moral victory, it’s a victory over the top team at the end of the season when it matters. By your logic… So if we lose its meaningless?… because we are the Arsenal?

  17. Joe

    You’re taking my “not celebrating” wrong Mid west.
    If this was in October and we had a sniff of the title it would mean slot more and the celebrating could be more fitting. Beating them now when the lift the title 4 weeks later loses it’s shine.

    Sorry Midwest if you want to celebrate it like we just won a trophy while Chelsea celebrate winning the league. All the power to you.

  18. Joe

    So now you take pride in beating the top team on their way to the title?

    Like it’s some sort of badge it honour?

    I’ll take real trophies thanks

    This is the mentality wenger has installed.

    4th is a trophy.

    It’s a sign of how low we have fallen in stature in the last 10 seasons that beating a top team on their way to the trophy is the new thing to brag about

  19. Joe

    Enjoy the ride? Beating Chelsea as they win the league and we come 2-4th is a reason to celebrate.

    If you accept mediocrity yes. It’s wenger’s fault we haven’t beaten a Jose led team.

  20. Joe

    Let me put it in a way you’ll understand.

    If we beat Chelsea and lose the next 2 games would you still be as happy as if we draw Chelsea and win the next 2 games???

  21. MidwestGun

    No i want to celebrate it like we just beat Chelsea. Nothing to do with trophies. Has to do with recent history and where we are headed in the future. You were trying to say it’s akin to beating Villa, only 3 points. It’s not because of all the reasons I mentioned.
    We should just beat Chelsea because we are the Arsenal? Come on dude, that’s a bit much.

  22. MidwestGun

    Marble –
    I’m 50 years old. Ive experienced plenty including sex with women, perhaps something you should check into. Or you could just stick to your familiarity with rogering.

  23. Cr0 Gunner

    Joe I get what you mentioned perhaps we have become a little inclined to accept 2nd or 4th best… but perhaps a win this time around acts more as a catalyst … yes I agree next season is next season but there is definitely a change going on through the club, I don’t for a second releive Wenger of his mistakes in the past 8 seasons … but after this season whether we like it or not his around for another 2, any improvement or win over the likes of Chelsea however insignificant could be a huge factor in the grand scheme of things including the mentality of our current squad and player attraction and retention.

    But as midwest mentioned sometimes you just got to enjoy the moment and there has been more this season then others considering how badly things were going on earlier in the season. But respect your perspective

  24. Joe

    No beating then shouldn’t mean fuck all because we are The Arsenal and they are chav scum. That’s it.

    But they are going to win the league so beating them now had it’s shine taken off it

    Let it rest. You celebrate and be happy with another failure of a season because a team of Arsenal stature, any season without winning the league is a failure. Why?

    Because we are the Arsenal and not the likes of Tottenham.

    Get it yet?

  25. Joe

    We are on the same points as last season after 31 games

    Got knocked out by Monaco at the same stage as last seasons CL

    Still lost to Man U. Beat man city but did C palace yesterday.

    We beat and lost to Liverpool last season this season we beat and drew them.

    We still have not won the FA Cup

    So why is this season so much better? Looks exactly the same as last season but our good run is coming at a different part of the season

    How did Liverpools run to 2nd place act as a catalyst to this season.

    Every season is different. Beating Chelsea in a couple weeks has no bearing on next season.

    I’ll be happy if we beat Chelsea but it’ll be just another 3 points in a failed seasons

    Although I will get to take the piss out of my bro in law for a few minutes until he reminds me that they are going to win the league /cup double.

  26. MidwestGun

    I’ll be celebrating beating Chelsea…. and its definitely not a given.
    But i think it’s a bit OTT to suggest it’s meaningless. My fanhood doesn’t solely revolve around the last day of the season. I want to win tye Premier League as much as anyone, and I’m definately not a Wenger apologist. But to suggest we should win the Premier every year is a bit delusional.

  27. Joe

    Last day of your season? If we were 5 points back and beat Chelsea and then yes I would be celebrating until Tuesday. But 10 points back and the league all but won by Chelsea I’ll celebrate it as just another win.

  28. Joe

    You go celebrate your beating Chelsea trophy mate.

    Getting in the top 4 trophy

    You were probably banging on about how we were top of the league for so long last season as some sort or progress/achievement

  29. Ozy

    LOL @ Joe. “We are The Arsenal”

    Can you be delusional enough to think we’re still a top European team? That’s a laugh.

    I’ll celebrate us beating Chelsea so loud, the little old lady who lives under me will call the cops.

  30. Cr0 Gunner

    Liverpool lost that ‘catalyst’ the day Suarez left. We have no fear of that moving forward, yes we have the same manager but the personal moving the club forward is a lot better and we adding to that, for some it’s too little too late, but for some who live in hope realise every win over the likes of Chelsea is a step in the right direction.

  31. Joe


    It is.

    Teams like barca, bayern, real all feel every season without winning the league is a failure. Should be same for us

    You really are a simpleton.

  32. MidwestGun

    Nope Joe I wasn’t. You can check my comments if you want. …….. you and your celebrating Chelsea trophy…’t think I’ve ever said anything about trophies. . I’m celebrating a victory over Chelsea should it happen, you said we shouldn’t. I’m disagreeing. It’s as simple as that.

    It’s your right to be miserable about it, but to suggestI can’t celebrate is a bit much Not everything is about AW. . As for calling me a simpleton, I’ll let it slide.

  33. Ozy

    You guys think we’re entitled to the league like we’re a European elite. You don’t see Atletico Madrid fans going “eh, Real Madrid will win it anyway so I’m not too bothered that we beat them.”

    Support your team. Every team we beat an elite team, I celebrate like mad. Especially one with a cunt for a manager who has made it his mission to badmouth us every chance he gets.

  34. kassim

    You are right. We need a gk and a wc one. as for Theo,sell him. He has been at Arsenal for ten years and and hasn’t been the product we had high hopes. Each time he threatened to take the fw by storm ,he gets injured.
    We also need a cd and a mobile and monster creature.The bg is ponderous and
    is liable to give away a penalty in a one on one.
    Bellerin could have been sent off after bring down Sterling.Another ref might might not be so forgiving.You just look at the CP/MC game. The cp goals could have been off side.Then the ball hit a CP player in the hand and yet the ref did not give a spot kick.This is a game changer if not title changer decision.
    That is why I want the FA to discipline/reprimand such errone prone mo with immediate effect.If not the outcome of games will be decided by such guys.
    This wont happen in a million years.

  35. Cr0 Gunner

    Ozy good point A Madrid give hell to Real regardless of where they are in the league … We have too many fans always looking at the other persons wife and kid’s and wishing he had that

  36. Joe

    We are the 5th richest club in the world. Highest ticket prices in the world. Sponsorhsip money rolling in. Pl and CL tv money coming in.

    The only reason we are not elite is because of wenger.

    So yes we should be challenging for the title every season. Not not challenging for 10 seasons.

    The only reason we don’t challenge is because of wenger’s mistakes in tactics and in the transfer window.

    As for not celebrating. I’m just saying the win won’t mean as much as Chelsea will be lifting the pl title a few weeks later so it’s a bit much to be screaming so loud you’ll be scaring the lady downstairs.

    Each their own though. I Love when arsenal win but sorry if a win vs Chelsea in the 34th game of the season when Chelsea will win the league 4 weeks later doesn’t excite me as much as it does you

    Go on and scream!

    I’ll be screaming when we beat Chelsea and it has a bearing on the title race and not as a moral victory because of recent history and we haven’t beat Jose etc etc

  37. Joe

    So now Athletico Madrid are the same stature as arsenal?

    You lot are grasping at straws.

    They are more like Tottenham and arsenal but Athletico have come good and won the league and made it to the CL final. But they are not close to same stature as arsenal in history of football or in the world of football.

    So yes they are ecstatic when they beat Madrid becauSe they are a much much much smaller club than Madrid.

    We are not smaller than Chelsea. We are a bigger club than Chelsea

    Jesus. Wenger has ruined some arsenal supporters and made them forget who the fuck arsenal is

  38. Emiratesstroller

    I thought at the start of this season when I watched the Charity Shield that Man City looked to be a very ordinary team. That view was reinforced on Monday when they lost to Crystal Palace.

    Part of the problem is the average age of their squad, which is now north of 29.
    It is 2-3 years older than most other top teams in major leagues.

    Manchester City have gone out to BUY success and that has presented them with 2 problems. The first is that many of their players come to the club for
    the wrong reasons. They pretend that it is to win trophies, but noone is kidding
    me that Sagna left us to win trophies. He went for the money and to be honest
    I doubt that he would have been first choice had he remained at Arsenal.

    The second problem is that they need now to rebuild their squad which will
    be a massive expensive and will be difficult if they have also to satisfy Fair Play
    Rules. There are already serious questions about their sponsorship deals. In
    addition they need to buy Home Grown Talent. Tonight the suggestion is that
    they will try and buy Wilshire,Henderson and possibly Sterling.

    The question is will Arsenal be willing to sell yet another player to Man City
    or indeed will Wilshire want to go there? Wenger suggested at end of last season that Arsenal were no longer a selling club and certainly not when it comes
    to their best talent.

    The only English player who might leave this summer would be Walcott, but
    that is only likely to happen if he refuses to sign a new contract and Sterling
    is recruited.

    Arsenal are now in the same boat as every other club in EPL. We need to build
    a strong nucleus of home grown players to satisfy the new regulations coming
    in in 2016. Arsenal are not going to do any other club any favours in that department.

    At the moment I think that Arsenal’s prospects look a lot rosier than Man City.
    It will be interesting to see how successful they are in the transfer market this
    summer. Personally I think that they will land up spending unrealistic transfer fees on average players. Most clubs are well aware that Man City are no
    longer in great shape and need to carry out a massive rebuild job, which will
    take at least 3-4 years to complete.

  39. MidwestGun

    Ok Joe. … you and i have both been on here a long time. So I’m not sure why you took it personal with the simpleton shots. .. I’ve just come to the realization if we can only celebrate Premier League victories and Champions League titles its gonna be a long time especially under AW.
    He has 2 more years, hopefully it ends then. And we can progress on.
    So give me my bit of happiness….. I hate Chelsea.

  40. Joe

    You’re missing the point mid west
    Anyway. I’ve banged on about the point for hours and you’re still not getting it

    Next topic please

  41. Joe

    I hate Chelsea as well and I wanted city to catch them when they were the only ones who could catch them

    But I won’t be calling my Chelsea mates and and screaming in their faces when they can throw the league title back in my face

    So yes I’ll be happy we won but not as happy if we had been in the title race

    Trust me if Chelsea lose 3 games before playing us and we win all our games until then and we win i will celebrate 10 x harder than you ever can or would want to. But if we are still 10 points back it’s a good victory.

  42. MidwestGun

    Premier League Title victories…. i meant. Also given our record against top 4 teams… i think it does show improvement if we beat them and stop getting beaten by embarassing scores. I still contend it’s not a moral victory…. but a chance to change our mental makeup. But i take your point it starts with the Manager.

  43. Ozy

    If Bayern were pit against Atletico, he wouldn’t have laughed and high fived his teammates like he did when we were drawn against them.

    So yeah. Sure, we have a lot of history but Atletico have surpassed us in Europe. Unfortunately, it’s the truth.

  44. MidwestGun

    So if we beat Chelsea with a new manager, then can I celebrate? Hahaha…..

    Just kidding. …. but there is such a thing as levels of improvement. As Pedro said we will see if it’s real or if we push on in the summer tw.
    I think I’m clear where you stand on that Joe. Lol.
    So i got your point.

  45. Dark Hei


    I guess you are right. But then the whole point of football is for the enjoyment of paying customers. That’s us and honestly, I want us to wipe that smug shitty smile off Jose’s face since it makes me happy for some illogical reason.

  46. Troy McClure

    If we don’t win the FA cup, it is a step backwards. 2nd place is nice, better than 3rd and still good, but the club should have higher ambition than finishing behind that uber twat Mourinho. Granted he has an unlimited budget and is an unwashed vagrant’s asshole after a humid summer day, but credit to him for storming out of the gates, signing a few high impact players, and adjusting tactics to fit the situation during the season. I guarantee he parks 10 buses against Arsenal at the Emirates because if Chelsea gets a draw, they win the league. Wenger seems to finally, after 10 years, realize that his team isn’t superior enough on talent anymore to just go out and blitz the opponent; playing tactics is needed, and when done right, gets results.

  47. kassim

    Every game is/will be different. In the CP/MC game,the blues engaged in endless passing in the final third of the pitch. By then it was difficult if not impossible to score let alone shoot.Arsenal used to play in this style and were repeatedly beaten by Chelsea and MU.The thing is you need a guy like Ronaldo clone to run at defenders.
    That will scare the shit out of the defences.In the Pool game ,I noticed Wenger has cut down the no of passess. Hopefully against Mu and Chelsea it will be more of the same as in the Pool game.That’s why Pool committed more fouls than Arsenal.
    You can rest assured in the games against these two side,Sanchez will be repeated fouled.However if the ref is 100% impartial,Arsenal will win.

  48. Bamford10

    Wilshere played a full 90 minutes with the U-21’s tonight. Is anyone looking forward to his return to the squad? Wenger has warned him he’ll have to fight for a spot. Perhaps this will be good for him.

  49. Bamford10

    Bielik apparently played CB in the U-21 game in order to make room for Wilshere, Diaby and Arteta in midfield.

  50. Emiratesstroller

    I am sure that there are a lot of posters including myself who would like to see Wenger retire sooner rather than later.

    However, we are performing quite well at the tail end of this season. On paper at least we have an improving team, which looks far more balanced than it has done for a very long time.

    The arrival of Coquelin in midfield has made a considerable difference to our
    performance level and offensively we are playing as well as anyone in league
    averaging 2 goals + per game.

    Our aim should be to finish season in second place in league and win FA Cup.
    If we do that it is an IMPROVEMENT.

    In the two remaining seasons that Wenger is Manager I hope that he continues to improve our squad rather than dismantle it. One thing is for sure I don’t
    want to see us sell our best players to Chelsea, Man City or Man Utd.

  51. qna

    Yeah agree with your post ES. In any case, Wenger cannot manage forever. He is already 65. Our gut feeling is that we can do better than Wenger, but the reality is the number of Managers that can actually come in and do a better job than AW with the money that the board makes available to them is actually very few. In fact, even if you get a great manager on paper – like say LVG. He might not come in and do any better. I would also hate for us to spend the next 5 years with trial and error managers like Roberto Martinez, or pretty much any British manager that you could name. My problem is not the quality of Wenger as a manger. I think he is fine there. He is in the top category and although he might not be as good in some areas as say Mourinho. I would much prefer to watch a Wenger side than a Mourinho side. But I think the quality of players at Arsenal means that no matter who the manager is, he can’t ultimately compete with sides that have higher quality players that are fit and in form. Bias aside, Chelsea for example have a higher quality side than Arsenal. If it is Arsenal that is refusing to sign better players, then I will jump on the calls to sack Wenger. Its not acceptable to choose to be mediocre. But if its the board who is holding the purse strings back, then a change in manager will make things worse not better. There may be a couple of other managers that might do better, like Simone or Klopp. But there is not guarantee of that and who is to say they wont get a better offer from a more ambitious club anyway.

  52. qna

    I think the situation with Wenger is the same as a number of our players. Giroud for example. I know we can do better, but there are actually few available players that we can get who fit this description.
    Giroud could actually look at ease playing in any team in the world. Put him in a Madrid shirt, Barca shirt or a Bayern shirt and he would probably be part of some killer moves and bang in a few goals as well. But they would probably deem that his is not quite good enough. Compare him to Lewendowski, Suarez or Benzema. But how many players are actually better than Giroud. There are very few. Bamford often talks about Benteke and lately he has been copping grief for this. But it doesnt make sense to compare their stats. I know a lot of people here think this is a ridiculous statement, but its not. Aston Villa do not play anything like Arsenal. So his service, the amount of possession, everything that lead to those stats are different. I would bet if Benteke was in an Arsenal shirt and Giroud was playing for Villa, that most posters (possibly including Bamford) would completely reverse there arguments about the two players. In that case, I would also be arguing who could come in and significantly improve on Benteke. I think there a number of players at Benteke’s level. These include Michu (before), Bony, Remy, Balotelli, Sturriage, Welbeck. And Giroud is around that level as well. I don’t think its worth our time to buy players at this level anymore. We have Giroud. If we want to take it to the next level, which includes winning the CL, we need to look to get a Lewi, Suarez or Benzema. If we can’t buy players at that level lets go for someone like Dybala if the trusted scouts think he can reach that top level one day.

  53. Dark Hei


    Wenger is leaving end of next season. My gut feel tells me that.

    Other predications will be that Arteta will leave next season to join Moyes in La Liga. He hasn’t signed a deal yet, which means he will end up leaving.

    Another prediction is that Sterling will end up at Chelsea, either next season or there after. I also have this feeling that Chelsea will buy Schneiderlin; because they know we want him and they desperately need cover for Matic.

    Which leaves us with Cabaye as Arteta’s replacement (not shabby IMO).

    Finally there is the Walcott. He will sign dat thing simply because he is not going to get a better deal elsewhere. Just like before he will go shopping around and finally stick with us.

    Oh, and Wilshire is going no-where.

  54. Thank you and goodnight

    I have to say I agree 100% with joe. What he says is bang on, and I agree about this season not being as big an achievement as some are making out. That said I’d still celebrate beating chelsea like a nutter, but I can’t see this season as us progressing like some can. I garuantee this time next year we’ll be saying the same things at this stage of the season as we have done last 2 seasons….”if only”

  55. Dark Hei


    Agree with you on Giroud. Not the best, but his willingness and ability to do team work simply means that he will always be valued at certain sides over others. Teams like Barcelona and Real Madrid will find him very useful. Teams like Athletico and Chelsea, will not have use for him. He will also be very average on a City or United team.

  56. qna

    Joe: We are the 5th richest club in the world. Highest ticket prices in the world. Sponsorhsip money rolling in. Pl and CL tv money coming in.

    We are the 8th richest in terms of our annual revenue, with liverpool 9th. We are 4th richest in the PL. But I see your point and agree that we should be at least 4th. Its no achievement, it is par. And for the 4th best side to win an FA cup once in 10 years is probably also par.

    Joe: The only reason we are not elite is because of wenger. So yes we should be challenging for the title every season.

    Joe: Not not challenging for 10 seasons. The only reason we don’t challenge is because of wenger’s mistakes in tactics and in the transfer window.

    I can see the argument here. We are led to believe he is given significantly more money than he spends and that he has chosen how to spend it. But I find that hard to believe. When I look at how SK runs his other sports teams, it seems to me it is the same as he does here. I suspect that he has been using, more or less, the available funds to the fullest. In which case, I can’t see how any other manager would have done better. BUT, if it is the case that he is holding back money, then I agree with you fully and he is responsible.

    It is really hard to know, if he was forced to buy players like Gervinho, Arteta, Santos, etc because he was not supported financially to buy players costing 10 to 15m more for each, or if this was his arrogance. If it was arrogance, then your point is valid and I think a better squad than we have had over the last 5 or so years (before Ozil) would have done better with pretty much any 5m a year manager. Hopefully, he has learnt his lesson going forward. But for the life of me I still cant explain why he sold Vermaelen and did not replace him before that window shut.

    I would also add that Wenger has tried an experiment by building an British core. This has failed miserably. He overpays this British core (with respect to equivalent talent in other major leagues in Europe) and they have weakened the team with respect to the top sides a bridge too far. This is definately Wenger’s responsibility and it is a failure. It’s ironic that he actually made his name at Arsenal with overseas talent, and after so much media pressure seems to have decided that he will build the an English national team. I think his arrogance has caused this problem and it has been a major reason why we have been stuck in 4th. Again, I agree with you Joe that another non-british manger would have been unlikely to make this commitment and would have at least.

    Counter argument to all of the good points by Joe is that his mistake with trying to build a British core is understandable. Hopefully, he has learnt from this and his recent talk when the new homegrown rules were proposed suggest he is back on to the right path. Quality doesn’t depend on nationality. Also, it is well known that we had to make sacrifices during the stadium move. I can give him the benefit of the doubt about his transfer moves in the past 10 years, and the frustrations we have had buying from the $2 shop. We have now bought Ozil and Sanchez in consecutive seasons, so it is possible that he has changed. Again, we will see this summer. We need to bring in some genuine quality (which naturally costs big money) and we need to move out some below par players. I am going with a glass half full view that we will do it this year. The fact that Arteta has been rumored to be offered a new contract gives me some cause to worry, but lets see.

  57. Emiratesstroller

    Football is a team game and you don’t need ‘galaticos’ in every position on the field. In my view quite the opposite, because ‘galaticos’ tend to be very self centred as you often see with the likes of Ronaldo and Messi.

    Giroud is despite the negative perennial comments on ‘Le Grove’ a consistently reliable striker. He may not be a 30 goal+ a season player but he is certainly a 20+ goal season player and when you factor in that Sanchez delivers also that
    number it is a very good foundation.

    We could do with another forward in the squad who is capable of scoring consistently 10-15 goals per season. At the moment neither Walcott nor Welbeck who should be that player manage it.

    However, overall Arsenal manage to score consistently goals from all outfield
    positions on field. Bellerin has scored two spectacular goals this season, which is just as important as relying on a couple of players to deliver all your goals.

    Realistically I do not see Arsenal picking up an established 30 goal a season player, because there are only two such players in World football and they are
    at Real Madrid and Barcelona. Their transfer fees and wages are out of reach.

  58. qna

    ES: Football is a team game and you don’t need ‘galaticos’ in every position on the field. In my view quite the opposite, because ‘galaticos’ tend to be very self centred as you often see with the likes of Ronaldo and Messi.

    I think every football club has to do whatever it can possibly do, within its own financial constraints, to achieve on field success. In the case of the biggest clubs, that naturally leads them to buying the best one or two players every year, which leads them to a team of Galacticos. Every year, this happens and the cream (of available players) gets taken from the top, all the way down to the bottom where the lower league clubs do their business. This is natural. It follows basic economics of any commodity. United, Chelsea and City do most of their business right near the top. We have not been because we have been following a self-imposed salary structure system which gives everyone a medium salary, but no player a high salary. So we have been restricting ourselves from the possibility of having top quality players (such as ‘galacticos’) in our squad. And we had to sell our own players when they became good enough to brake the structure (Adebayor, Nasri, RVP), or make an exception with a gun to our head (Fabregas, Walcott). Note we still had to pay the ones that didnt get better to the life of their contract.

    The last couple of seasons we had the same wage bill as Chelsea and not so different from City and United. The effect is that when these big teams have their best players on the pitch, they are playing with 11 players with a much larger wage vs our best 11. But when injuries come in, the wage bill of our fit 11 players might only drop a little bit, whereas the other teams play with 11 fit players whose wage bill might even be lower than ours. It makes sense to do this, since on average with injuries we keep quality on the field at all times and we are not so affected by injury due to squad depth. But in reality this has not worked for us – unless you consider 4th place a trophy. It was a great experiment. But the results are in and the thesis failed.

  59. daz

    Why does Wenger get so much stick for selling verm and not replacing in the summer would gab have that much difference to the start we had, if you look mourinho let luiz, Cole and Bertrand go and only brought in Luis who has been used very little he has played the same back four practically all season and IMO has been very fortunate not to have picked up some injuries yet where’s the outrage for him to go into a season with just zouma and Luis as cover then to buy another winger in January and no defender, so if Wenger is a Muppet for doing what he did what does that make mourinho

  60. Wallace


    “The last couple of seasons we had the same wage bill as Chelsea and not so different from City and United.”

    nope, we haven’t –

    Man Utd – 215m
    Man City – 205m
    Chelsea – 190m
    Arsenal – 166m

  61. Wallace


    “Once wenger goes we will be back at the top where we belong!
    It’s sad the level he has brought us down to.”

    you pining for the days of Bruce Rioch and the mad dash for 6th?

  62. SomeRandomGunner

    People really under estimate Giroud’s growth rate. All this “higher ceiling” should actually be applied for Giroud.

    His career growth has been phenomenal ,

    In his first season in ligue 1 from ligue 2 he scored 14 goals from 42 games and Montpellier finished 14 th that season.

    In the next season in Montpellier he scored 25 goals from 42 games winning the ligue 1 as top scorer of the league.

    With Arsenal he has scored
    17 goals from 47 games
    22 goals from 51 games
    18 goals from 27 games.
    Also Giroud is not our penalty taker it usually accounts for 4-6 goals a season.

    His improvement through out his career has been extremely good , much much better than many of these “high ceiling” players ever will be.

  63. Dark Hei

    “Goals per 90 minutes is the most important number for scoring efficiency, as it shows how well strikers take advantage of their opportunities. Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud leads this category with 0.9 goals scored per 90 minutes, and this efficiency, along with his improved ability to create chances for his teammates, make him my most improved forward in the Prem.” – Andy Melville, ESPN

    Holy smokes!

  64. SomeRandomGunner

    There is a very very interesting correlation between the goals scored and the league points . From 2007-2008 season each of our goal was worth at least 0.90 points to 1.16 points

    Here is the season wise breakup

    Season Points per goal
    ——— ——————-
    2007-2008 –> 1.05
    2009-2010 –> 0.909
    2010-2011 –> 0.95
    2011-2012 –> 0.95
    2012-2013 –> 1.02
    2013-2014 –> 1.162
    2014-2015 –> 1.01

    Except for 2 seasons our points per goal is with in a range of 0.95 to 1.05 .
    Last season was kind of an exception , each of our goal was worth 1.162 points.

    This tells about our excellent defence last season , even though we remember the last season for 6-0 , 6-3, 5-1 our defence was very good in other games hence putting less pressure on attack to score more goals.