Man Utd 3-2 Arsenal. Bottled it. So Wenger, right?

by .

Hello darkness my old friend

Hello darkness my old friend, its Alex here after a looooooong hiatus to report on the abomination that was Arsenal’s performance at Old Trafford.

I wish we were meeting under more felicitous circumstances, I really do. However this is a season where mediocrity has been the benchmark and Arsenal are struggling to even be consistently mediocre. The only thing that does appear to be consistent is our unnerving ability to blunder our way to fourth.

Why does this keep happening? The players are different, the tactics are different, the backroom team is different, the transfer budget is different, the opponents are different, their managers, kits, medical teams, all different. However the results remain the same. The one constant is Arsene Wenger. A good manager, perhaps. A true servant to Arsenal Football Club, undoubtedly yes. The man to put Arsenal where they belong, at the pinnacle of English and world football, NO.

In isolation this match would be an embarrassment but it’s symptomatic of a failure to perform on the big occasions which has meant Arsenal has not really been dining with the big boys since 2004. This result was in many ways worse than the 8-2. That day we fielded a team of youngsters and ne’er-do-wells in what was essentially a damage limitation exercise (brought about nonetheless by Arsene’s lack of planning).

Yesterday was different. United were the ones fielding a squad of assistant burger flippers and chimney sweeps. I swear by the end they were bringing on kids who’d just resat their 11 plus. Throw into the mix fraudulent show ponies like Memphis Depay, an ageing Carrick being played out of position, two fullbacks who hadn’t played for months and a complete fruit loop of a manager, this team deserved a spanking.

It’s almost impossible that a team of professionals; World Cup, Champions League and league winners could contrive to lose to that Motley crew. Almost but not quite. Not when you’re Arsenal.

The first five minutes were alright. United looked like they were due a hiding, we had most of the ball and created a nice chance through Monreal who should have been more clinical.

But then it became apparent that something was wrong. United were pressing us high and our midfield, Coquelin and the absolutely woeful Aaron Ramsey, went missing. More often than not our back four were bringing the ball out and struggling to find an outlet. Usually having Giroud up front would give us an alternative, however Walcott was having one of those days (you know the ones where he is in a state of quantum superposition and you’re not really sure if he exists).

We started to get jittery, LIKE WE ALWAYS DO WHEN OUR OPPONENTS REFUSE TO ROLL OVER FOR US, and that’s when the bullshit started.

I questioned the decision to drop Mertesacker for Gabriel. Sure Merts had a mare against Barca and was at fault for both goals, but Gabriel still looks a little green and plays like he is wearing rollerskates. Sure enough after about 12 minutes he got skinned by Roy of the Rovers and was lucky not to concede a penalty. It was shocking play from him, his body positioning was all wrong and he got turned inside out by a child with zero Premier League minutes. He should have been subbed for that alone.

Walcott briefly appeared to try and dribble the ball out of the danger area. Unfortunately he was only able to run in a straight line and was quickly dispossessed. United broke forward before Arsenal could reset themselves (that’s why you shouldn’t get dispossessed in danger areas Theo). Their fullback whipped in an excellent cross which Koscielny missed and Gabriel jabbed at like it was a dead beagle. The ball fell for Captain Marvel who smashed it home. Awful anticipation from Gabriel.

Their second came a few minutes later. Lingard moseyed inside and Herarra’s ball over the top was too much for Alexis (another player guilty of breath-taking shittiness) to track. The floated cross landed bang in the middle of the six yard box, in between our two centrebacks and onto the head of the Boy Wonder. I’m blaming Gabriel for this one to. He could see Rashford in front of him, and his anticipation was way, way too slow.

Their third was another example of shambolic defending. We had six players back versus their three and still got taken apart. Here’s a tip, rather than standing in a straight line in the penalty area, Coquelin (or even Ramsey if you feel like it): TRACK THE RUNNER.

I’m not going to focus on our goals as they don’t warrant analysis, other than to say there was a noticeable lack of response from the players following both. The players reacted as if Ozil’s goal was a consolation after a 10-1 shellacking, not a crucial turning point in the game. Can you imagine any team other than one managed by Arsene Wenger chasing their first league title in 12 years reacting so nonchalantly to this goal? I’ve played in pub darts teams with more desire to win.

The game ended with United showboating. Actual 18 year old debutants doing step-overs and flicks to piss away the last five minutes. That is how little threat we posed, that is how little respect they had for our team. Champions? Not fucking likely.

So what are the talking points? Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmm

Koscielny
Wore the captain’s armband but needs to start acting like a captain. That doesn’t mean just playing ace, it means sorting out your team mates when they have taken leave of their senses, organising the defence and showing some #pashun when the rest of the team are losing their heads.

Gabriel
There is a good player in there somewhere but this has been a season to forget for him. He should be starting behind Mertesacker and even Big Cal at the moment. He needs extra coaching on his positioning because it’s usually wrong and he is relying on his pace to bail him out. Have you noticed that he’s almost always falling over at the critical time? He is the very definition of “last-ditch”.

Ramsey
What is going on with this guy? Does he even know what his role is in the team, does he get instructions from Wenger? I’m pretty sure Ozil is the guy with the free role, Aaron, so stop dicking around in the penalty area and sort out your positioning. United pressed high today and both he and Coquelin were unable to play around it. Dare I say it but did we miss Santi Cazorla?

Walcott
Possibly his worst ever Arsenal performance. Theo seriously needs to think about what he wants from his career, does he want to coast for the next 8 years like he has the last 10? His best season for us was 10/11 when he played out wide feeding Van Persie. That season he would hang off the full back’s shoulder, carry the ball to the byline and whip in crosses for RVP to finish. I’d suggest he reverts back to that role as its not working for him at number 9.

Alexis
Another one in the category of WTAF. This guy has been playing like a bucket of cold sick for months. I know he’s one of our superstars but he needs to be dropped. Like Ramsey, he is desperate to score and holds onto the ball for too long. He needs to drop this Roy of the Rovers nonsense and focus on the basics. In the meantime, why can’t Campbell fill in?

Arsenal
I’d love us to win the league and there is still a possibility from this position. But if it is to happen it would require a complete reversal of the form we have shown over the last two months. Let’s be honest, Leicester are playing like Champions. Tottenham are playing like Champions. We got lucky in the Leicester game and haven’t looked confident or clinical for a long time. I would put that down to the mentality of the players but we know these guys are winners. Alexis, Ozil, Welbeck, Mertesacker, Giroud have all won major honours. Why are they looking lost now?

There is something psychological going on, “bottling it” is actually a thing and it is what Arsenal are doing right now. We either start games complacently or we panic when the game plan doesn’t work. We’ve been finishing seasons like this for 12 years now and it’s not getting any better.

However, more concerning than even this, we are not playing like a team. We are not playing well as a defensive unit or as an offensive unit. There is no link up between our defence and midfield or our midfield and attack. There are no successful partnerships on the pitch and there is no one to take the game by the scruff of the neck when needed. Ozil is the closest thing we have to this but even Mozart is going to struggle to make beautiful music with a cow bell.

Arsene Wenger
Which brings me on to the manager and his consistent inability to resolve these issues. I alluded to this at the start of the post and it is a drum I have been banging for so long my arm has fallen off. He is the cause of (and unfortunately for now) the solution to all of Arsenal’s problems. That performance was so bad in every respect, coming at such a decisive time in the season, how can it be tolerated by a club with serious aspirations of winning the title? Will the necessary pressure be put on him to re-evaluate his methods?

His substitutions against Barca were insane and I’m not sure of the value of bringing on Iwobi over Campbell in this game. However it’s the lack of motivation for the team and ability to change things when the chips are down that are his real Achilles heel. His post-match comments were petulant but reveal what is at the heart of the problem with Arsene Wenger.

“They spent a lot of money” the long standing refrain that has been his emotional and professional security blanket for ten years looks threadbare now he has two players in his team who cost upwards of £70 million combined. This is not a time for excuses, it’s time for him to reflect on his own performance and consider if it has been good enough.

The bar has been set considerably lower this year and yet, somehow, Arsene Wenger’s team still look set to hang their caps several pegs below it. That in itself should be enough for him to reflect on.

You can follow me on twitter @aldo_doel

 

 

801 Responses to “Man Utd 3-2 Arsenal. Bottled it. So Wenger, right?”

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  1. fabregas bald head

    m.goal.com/s/en-gb/news/2896/premier-league/2016/03/01/20863972/arsenal-are-silent-on-the-pitch-no-one-speaks-to-each-other?utm_source=facebook.com&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=engbfb&utm_referrer=http%3A%2F%2Flm.facebook.com%2Flsr.php%3Fu%3Dhttp%253A%252F%252Fwww.goal.com%252Fen-gb%252Fnews%252F2896%252Fpremier-league%252F2016%252F03%252F01%252F20863972%252Farsenal-are-silent-on-the-pitch-no-one-speaks-to-each-other%253Futm_source%253Dfacebook.com%2526utm_medium%253Dreferral%2526utm_campaign%253Dengbfb%26ext%3D1456825020%26hash%3DAcldSIIeAy4kN9saSSQRWfLeoLMTxXhA8oWs5P75B1qBDg%26_rdr

    honestly I think this is d major problem

  2. fabregas bald head

    Even if
    Wenger does manage to get his players
    playing good football for the rest of the season,
    and let’s be honest and say none of us think
    that will happen, I don’t know if Wenger can
    rebuild the relationship with the fans. There’s
    just too much, we are up to our necks in bad
    memories.
    – 7amkickoff

    it seems everyone is now tired of Wenger

  3. Dream10

    Thought we underestimated Man Utd by starting four forwards (Mesut Ozil in most games spends more time closer to Giroud than the central midfield pairing).
    I don’t think you can be an elite side if you don’t have at least three midfielders on the pitch can handle the defensive side of the game. One/both of Alexis Sanchez, Walcott should have started on the bench.

    AW choice of personnel cost us the Man Utd match.

  4. champagne charlie

    Dream

    Agree in part. But biggest flaw we have in our system, and lineup from that game was the CM who have NO ability to possess and circulate the ball. Coquelin and Ramsey are runners/grafters which meant our CM was absolutely useless at anchoring the play.

    Schneiderlin > Coquelin/Ramsey

    So obvious he should’ve been an Arsenal player in the summer, yet many people on here dragged arbitrary facts and stats that distort truth. He’s a better baller than any of our central options bar cazorla, and he.s physically an equal to anyone we have in CM. We’re so bad in CM, it’s pathetic.

  5. Wallace

    Dream10

    “AW choice of personnel cost us the Man Utd match.”

    no, our approach to the game cost us the game. if we’d played like we really wanted it we’d have stuffed them. they were playing two midfielders at centre back(one of whom is 38 or something) and we never once got after them.

  6. gambon

    Massive anti-Wenger sentiment brewing out there.

    He is finished at this club, its just a matter of time.

    I hope he spends the rest of his life alone, watching videos of Diaby and wondering why no-one loves him any more.

  7. Carts

    Going back to a couple posts last night, I’d say realistically we’re looking at around 6-8 player exiting the building.

    As much as I’d like to include players like Ox and Walcott, I can’t see that happening for one reason. Wages! Maybe a loan for Ox woulod make sense, but at this stage in his career I sense this is something that should’ve happened 4 seasons ago. Who knows.

    So, notwithstanding any blackmail or further manipulation, we’re looking at:

    *Arteta – free
    *Flamini – free
    *Rosicky – free
    *Debauchy – £5m
    *Gibbs – £5m
    *Gabriel – Loan
    *Chamber – Loan
    *Ox – loan
    **Hayden – nominal fee
    **Toral – nominal fee
    **Akpom – Nominal fee
    **Gnabry – nominal fee

    In:

    Telles – £10m (replacment for Gibbs)
    Juan Jesus – £10m (Left sided CB)
    Koulibally – £15m (Eventual Mertesacker replacement)
    Xhaka – £20m (An upgrade on Coquelin and more stability)

    Attackers, my mind has gone blank. Upgrades on Giroud, Aubameyang and Griezzman comes to mind.

    Wide attackers could range from the likes of Ljajic and Reus

  8. Live by the River

    So checked in to see what the score is these days here and delighted to see some of the muppets like N3 the post code boy no longer seem to be around (what an irritating waste of blog space he was)

    Have to echo Gambon’s assertion that AW is all but finished now however we do need to afford the guy some dignity

    AFC still does not feel like my old club anymore, godspeed the demise of that Stan fellow and his corporate hoods (take post code boy’s lead and jog on you carpetbagging tossers)

    And….Souness was bang on in saying that this group of players has no “bollocks” (first rule of management is the team MIRRORS the (washed out) manager

    Laters….

  9. Dream10

    Champagne Charlie

    Agree with you. Schneiderlin took responsibility in the first phase of play. Our defenders were bypassing midfield.
    Ramsey was poor and Coquelin was shocking yesterday. I have a lot time for Aaron as well. Some players look fearful out there, which was a worry.
    I don’t think Gabriel should be a first choice CB next year. I know Walcott had a stinker, but Gabriel’s performance threw the whole back line off.
    He’s the player who will suffer the most.

  10. Leedsgunner

    “AW choice of personnel cost us the Man Utd match.”

    Even if that was true, it’s a bed that Wenger has made. He continually refuses to sign depth to his squad — choosing rather to rely on injury prone players who only flatter to deceive.

    We have no depth in the squad because transfer window after transfer window Wenger turns his nose up at it saying its financial doping to buy players to success. Remember who is the only manager in the Europe’s top 5 leagues NOT to sign a single outfield player?

    Wenger chose the players he had to play because it was the strongest squad he had available. This same squad then crumbled like a pack of cards in front of a makeshift United team spearheaded by a raw 18 year old who schooled our forwards with his clinical finishing. Am I saying Rashford is the next best thing? No, but he took his chance and showed desire and passion.

    Do you know who our equivalent of Rashford is in the past 4 years? A young raw striker, unproven in the EPL?

    Yaya Sanogo, a player who is 4 years older.

    A player of whom one Mr. R. De Boer described this way…“However, when I see Sanogo I still have my doubts. I have still found no qualities with which you can do something.”

    This is the same player whom Wenger described as our future £50m striker. How has he done with his Arsenal career so far? What does that tell you about Wenger’s legendary eye for spotting player potential.

    The lack of player depth is all of Wenger’s making, over 5 or 6 years of constant transfer confusion and inactivity.

    Before anyone mentions Özil, Sanchez and Cech, three players don’t make a team and it doesn’t bandage up 10 years or poor player recruitment.

  11. Confidentgoner

    We find ourselves saying the same thing year after year. Take a look at Le-grove posts 6 seasons ago. It’s still same old shit.

    Clearly AW is no big match day tactician. His attitude to a match is what gets filtered down to his team. He came with a lazzer faire attitude to the game on Sunday and guess what, it filtered down to the playing staff.. By the time they knew it two good goals had riffled past Cech – from an unknown teenager.

    Will this happen next time? You can bet top dollar there will always be an encore. Fellow managers beat AW side by contesting the midfield and hard pressing. AW does not seem to have a solution to that. His players also pass inaccurately and tamely. If we are being honest, his time as a manager is up. Can he be honest to himself at 8m GBP per annum? So far seems not.

    Ramsey has been very poor. Sanchez same. Does anyone show them match videos to see and learn from their bad passes, positioning and shooting? What’s the analytics company doing? O, they are also yes men to the boss.

    On Theo, the less said the better. 140,000 per week? You joking.

  12. Leedsgunner

    I don’t want Wenger to sign anyone — he has had his go at rebuilding a title winning side or a side capable of winning the UCL. The fact that Roberto Di Matteo was able to win the UCL tells you all you need to know about how Wenger doesn’t know what he is doing in the competition. The only thing he knows what to do is to qualify… if he does that he thinks his job with respect to that competition is done.

  13. Red&White4life

    Ozil, Sanchez, Cech, Mert, Kos (lol)…

    Where the fuck are our leaders on the pitch ??
    Wenger destroys the confidence of his best players, as their mental strenght.

    I want the spuds to be champs, because I want to see – at last – the “WENGER OUT” banners at the Emirates.

  14. champagne charlie

    Carts

    That’s a Fifa/Football manager list if ever I saw one. Be lucky if we see a CB, CM, and ST all join in the summer. Xhaka seems too good a fit a’la Schneiderlin last time round, so expect him to join City. We’ll look more towards kante which will follow our ‘aim mid range but expect more output’ approach.

    LB – Chilwell or whatever of Leicester is being touted hard.
    CB – Anyones guess as Wenger is awful with defenders typically. Laporte would be a coup, but expect more like an N’kolou
    CM – Xhaka tailor made. Expect a Kante, then that will be followed by a stat attack from our own fans claiming he’s world class. He’s not.
    ST – Aubameyang will get linked all summer, but expect someone more like Michy of Marseille. I’d go get Higuain day one personally.

  15. Thank you and goodnight

    @gambon

    “I hope he spends the rest of his life alone, watching videos of Diaby and wondering why no-one loves him any more.”

    Ha ha ha did make me chuckle. I’ll just add “mopping up the semen with an old diaby arsenal top never worn”

  16. OleGunner

    Wow Wenger says criticism from Man Utd loss was too emotional and over the top.

    Jesus does he not understand the pure toxic atmosphere he’s brewing at the club?
    How can this man be oblivious to fan’s anger for such a collapse with a 12 year league wait at stake.

  17. Dream10

    Wallace

    We struggled to establish play, not for the first time this year. The ball was not sticking in the final third
    You can we didn’t get at Blind and Carrick properly, but Walcott was definitely the wrong choice. Giroud would be have been more effective.
    Sanchez is in poor form and Welbeck gave his best.

    Our defending as a collective made the task even more difficult.

  18. Leedsgunner

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-3470131/Arsenal-135m-bank-manager-Arsene-Wenger-half-strengthen-squad.html

    “Likewise, Jack Wilshere and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain are also in line for new contracts. However, it remains to be seen whether Arsenal are willing to offer the England duo significant pay increases given their recent injury problems.

    Arsenal will use increased TV revenue to pay for lucrative player deals so not to impact on the summer transfer budget.”

    Why do these players Wilshere and the Oxeven in consideration for new improved contracts? What have they done to deserve them?

  19. Voice of terror

    Unfortunately wenger is far from finished at arsenal, regardless of fans feelings as long as kroenke is the owner wenger will be involved ,if not as manager then as chairman. If wenger moved upstairs he would appoint a manager he could control, probably remi Garde.
    We are a club heading for crisis and it’s getting out of control,we already need a huge overhaul of the playing staff and who would want to play for a club with no ambition , except for more Walcotts taking their 6 million a year and contributing nothing.
    I live for the day wenger goes but it just ain’t going to happen.
    Older fans like myself will remember what happened to European champions Nottingham forest when they stayed with Brian clough to long, can you imagine our chocolate soldiers in a relegation fight.

  20. Pendrey

    Right ‘over the top’ huh. toxic huh.
    Shows how disconnected from reality he is.
    So you see its everyone else fault. How about accepting some responsibility, and explaining what the fuck was Walcott doing! and why is he still at the club?

  21. Leedsgunner

    Wow Wenger says criticism from Man Utd loss was too emotional and over the top.

    Nah I will tell you what was over the top. A celebratory lap of honour and taking selfies around the stadium after beating a 10 man Leicester… that was arrogant unprofessional and full of unadulterated s***. What did they win? In any case the three points gained there have been nullified by our loss to Man United anyways… Plus Leicester gained the full three points versus teams like Liverpool, Stoke and Tottenham, teams we could only manage limp draws.

    Just out of curiosity — does anybody know whether Tottenham did a lap of honour on Sunday when they came from behind to beat Swansea? Or took selfies?

  22. Red&White4life

    Look what wenger did after all those years of failure : he’s about to transform us into spuds fans lololol

  23. Goonah

    My team for tomorrow

    ————-Welbeck————-
    Sanchez–Ramsey–Campbell
    ——-Coquelin–Özil———
    Monreal-Kozz-Mert-Bellerin
    ————–Cech—————-

    Ramsey will improve with less pressure as a CAM
    Özil is the only one with quick feet, vision and an eye for a pass that can play our way out of any kind of press. It’s not optimal cos he gets mugged of the ball quite easy at times but I think it’s the only way to get us ticking as a team. And we have to play the useless Mert to calm the defence it seems

  24. Cesc Appeal

    Parlour saying what I did months ago, Spurs are a far more complete ‘team’ than us.

    The last two seasons, Arsenal have relied on individuals, Sanchez’s first half of last season was huge for us, Ozil’s ditto for this year…we rely on little patches of form where the quality of some of our players can take over, but we haven’t actually got a team.

    Its all makeshift and reactionary.

    Again, this is one of the biggest problems, Wenger doesn’t know what he wants his team to be, he knows he wants to play Ozil and Caz and Wilshere and Ramsey all at once, he knows who he wants to play, not what he wants to play.

    That, is a FIFA manager.

    Big week this, if Spurs can win a tricky game at West Ham, I don’t see anything less than a win for them against us meaning they will be 6 points ahead and with their game in hand City leapfrog us if they win it.

    Swansea is must win, anything less and I think we get sucked into worrying about 4th.

  25. Carts

    Charlie

    I’m well aware of the unlikelihood of us signing anyone who will genuinely improve us.

    No way do I see us signing all those player, I should’ve said sign 3 from that crop.

    We need LB cover, badly. As you said Chilwel look like the chaps to play understudy to Monreal.

    CB situation is dire. We spent all window trying to snare Gabriel, when it should’ve been Mussachio (though I think he was injured). I don’t see us getting rid of Gabriel, but he hasn’t been given a run and cos of that I’d take Koulibaly or Juan.

    Xhaka has been coveted around these streets as someone who’ll do Coquelin’s job more effectively. Kante is more like Ramsey hence why I don’t think we’ll go for a B2B.

    Now I can honestly say premium strikers are at a minimum. I highly doubt we’ll move for Higuain or Aubameyang, tbh.

  26. Micheal

    Those expecting a massive clear-out this summer are living in cloud cuckoo land. It ain’t gonna happen.

    Sure, a few like Arteta, Roskick and Flamini will depart. But in 20 years when did Wenger ever launch a massive clear-out ? Never.

    One or two signings and a couple of kids stepping. But no more.

    Deep down, I suspect most rational supporters would agree.

  27. Cesc Appeal

    Wenger won’t buy anyone, don’t do it to yourselves.

    Look how bitchy he got this morning, if we end up 3rd behind Leicester and Spurs and all the world are marvelling at them and laughing at Wenger calling for him to be sacked or for him to show more ambition in the market he will just become more obstinate.

    All these theories and transfer plans are based on the assumption Wenger cares more about Arsenal FC’s success and the fans than he does his principles, ego and ‘his’ players…he does not.

  28. gazzap

    I’d bring chambers back into the team for the next game. I’d play Welbeck, Giroud and Sanchez up top. I’d keep Ramsey in but if he looks poor, then sub off for Elneny, who is not really looking great himself but he needs a chance. I’d also look at using some of the younger players as subs – Iwobi or Adelaide.

  29. Goonah

    I really fear for us if he doesn’t step down after the season

    I know he wont ….sacked?….not a chance

    The frustration has turned into apathy

  30. Carts

    LOL @ “over the top” and “too emotional”.

    Clearly Wenger wasn’t kicking teapots and throwing prawn sandwich’s around the dressing room then.

    Disingenuous prat probably hasn’t even analysed that shit show either.

    What the point though, it’s not like he looked at Utd’s team and said

    “right, Sanchez, I want you to run Varela fucken raged out there. Make him your bitch!!!”.

    **Considering the chap was booked after 8 fucken minutes, too.

    “Kos, let Rashford know you’re up his ass like a butt plug, all game.”

    “let’s try and isolate that stiff cunt Carrick”

    “Theo, Rojo was just about passed fit, drag that tranny all over the gaff”

    Like these are the thing teams would do to us, ffs.

  31. Wallace

    Goonah

    was also just thinking about playing Ozil deeper. not ideal, but we need somebody with good intelligence and technique in there until either Cazorla or Wilshere return.

  32. Cesc Appeal

    I think we may need to rest Welbeck tomorrow, he’s been out for 10 months and he’s played some high intensity stuff since coming back, if we’ve got any chance, any at all at WHL then we’re going to need him full of running.

    You have to go with Giroud I think.

    Cech
    Chambers, Mert, Kozz, Gibbs
    Coq, Elneny
    Walcott, Ramsey, Campbell
    Giroud

    That is what I would go with, give Mert and especially Campbell a game to get their eye back in because right now, sadly, Campbell is probably best choice to complete our front three at WHL, give Ozil, Bellerin and Monreal a rest and…I don’t know…try to do something with Ramsey, try to get him into some sort of form.

  33. Carts

    Michael

    5-7 first team players leaving is conceivable, now, more than ever.

    When you consider that Flamini, Rosicky and Arteta – who,lets face it, are non-entities – are leaving, you can easily see Gibbs and Debauchy following suit. That’s 5 already, ffs.

    two out of Gabriel, Ox and Chambers leaving (on loan) in some capacity is 50/50, I reckon

  34. Biggles

    I know money talks. Recent transfers to China prove that. Robinho to Manchester City back in the day proves that. David Murray and the “for every five pounds Celtic spend, we will spend ten” proves that.

    However, there are a bunch of players who are ambitious, for whom money is not the most important thing. Take Ivan Rakitic for instance. First team player for Barcelona and on £75k a week. That means he makes £10k a week LESS than Rosicky and £5k a week LESS than Arteta. He could make a chunk more elsewhere. But he wants to win things, so the fact that Stoke could afford to pay him £100k a week if they wanted probably isn’t enough to tempt him to move there. Okay, so maybe Stoke weren’t interested, but I think you get my point.

    As a team, Arsenal have few players with great ambition. RvP had it, it’s one of the reasons why he left. But the problem is that not only are we incredibly generous to players who contribute little-to-nothing, our utter stagnation means that truly ambitious players will not come and sign for us even if we offer them the money. We are one of the richest clubs in the world. We can afford anybody. But a lot of players who have ambition and want to win simply wouldn’t go near Arsenal, because it’s unlikely that they will ever win anything.

    Look at Jamie Vardy compared to Walcott. I know which one I would rather have in my team right now. Walcott has more pedigree as he’s been at Arsenal for a decade and Vardy was playing in the Conference only three years ago, but one is top of the table and breaking goal-scoring records and the other is Theo.

    When you combine desire with talent, then you get worldies. I might not like Ronaldo, but there’s no denying he’s an awesome player. And he’s driven as hell. There’s pretty much nobody in the Arsenal team who is that driven any more. Some arrived like that, but it was beaten out of them.

    And the guy who decides how much to pay the mediocrity?

    Wenger.

    The guy who decides whether or not to find the final pieces of the puzzle?

    Wenger.

    The guy who earns the most a year at Arsenal?

    Wenger.

    The guy who seems to be a reason players DON’T want to join us?

    Wenger.

    GAH I CAN’T TAKE IT ANY MORE!

  35. Wallace

    Leeds

    ” A celebratory lap of honour and taking selfies around the stadium after beating a 10 man Leicester…”

    did that actually happen? I saw the dressing room pic that Alexis posted, but nothing out on the pitch…you sure it wasn’t just the photographers covering the game?

  36. Carts

    We’ll beat Swansea, I’m sure of that. We’re so inconsistent that you know we’re due a win to show zi mental stregz. Then Utd loss will look like a distant memory. I can not fathom a loss….unless Chamber’s is playing RB and Montero LW O_O

  37. Dissenter

    Michael,

    “Those expecting a massive clear-out this summer are living in cloud cuckoo land. It ain’t gonna happen.Sure, a few like Arteta, Roskick and Flamini will depart. But in 20 years when did Wenger ever launch a massive clear-out ? Never.One or two signings and a couple of kids stepping. But no more. Deep down, I suspect most rational supporters would agree.”

    Excellent post.
    I’m in 100% agreement.
    It’s like asking a leopard to change its spots. Wenge can’t help himself.
    He has to create conditions to mitigate his expected failure at the end of the season.

  38. Cesc Appeal

    Carts

    It all doesn’t matter, we don’t have the balls under this manager to do anything, really I’m just hoping this doesn’t turn super embarrassing.

  39. Relieable Sauce

    lol @ Wenger incredulity.
    Wobs had you sussed years ago pal, youve now lost the backing of the mainstream media and a lot of akbs.
    I’m sure Ty still thinks you are top, top quality.

  40. Carts

    Cesc

    I know what you mean, and the Midwest gambler in me would say this game will be a draw.

    But I think we’ll win. As for who’ll start, that’s anyones guess. I can see 3 changes happening easily. For starters Ramsey and Theo can get the fuck out of my face, right now

  41. champagne charlie

    Could you imagine Ronaldo at Arsenal slating his teammates? He’s getting dogs abuse for doing it at Madrid but I’ve no issue with a top class player who performs so consistently having a go at others who aren’t.

    Why should he be condemned for saying exactly what any fan would? Fuck your sanctity of keeping all things inside the dressing room. PC culture at its worst.

    Who do you imagine is slating Theo/Ramsey/Coquelin/Flamini when they’re all being garbage? NOBODY except us who have to endure such nonsense.

  42. Thank you and goodnight

    “Over the top” and “too emotional”…..fuck me what planet does he live on. Jesus if that doesn’t prove he’s nuts nothing will. If we’d lost by bad luck or a dodgy decision to their 1st eleven you could say “fair enough, shit happens”…..but we were outplayed by a team that would struggle to beat most pub teams FFS

  43. Carts

    Dissenter

    Ayy, where have I said 5-7 players coming in?

    The list I made at 10:03am was just a few players who I think could improve us; no way would we sign them all, let alone 2 on a good day.

  44. gambon

    As has been said, theres very little point in dreaming about signings if Wenger stays for next season.

    The man neither cares about winning, nor knows how to win any more.

    He is stuck in his own deluded world, caught between misguided loyalty and a complete lack of understanding of the modern game.

  45. Cesc Appeal

    Carts

    Sadly I think we have to think about a bit of rest for the weekend, as slim a chance as we have at WHL, that is going to be a high intensity game, might mean people like Walcott having to play tomorrow.

    Unfortunately, to have a chance at Spurs you need your central midfield to have a really solid game, Coq has been awful since his return, Ramsey is just playing like a t**t and Elneny isn’t anything to get excited about and hasn’t been broken into the EPL.

    Spurs’ greatest strength is their centre, the amount of space United got and the amount of breaks, Spurs will destroy us if we allow that, you’re not talking Rashford, Lindegaard, Mata and Depay, two of them youngsters, two of them very hit and miss, you’re talking Kane, Eriksen, Alli and Lamela, all on fire.

  46. Wallace

    Champagne

    “Why should he be condemned for saying exactly what any fan would? Fuck your sanctity of keeping all things inside the dressing room. PC culture at its worst.”

    I’d imagine most dressing rooms get pretty feisty during a bad run. Keane punching Schmeichel etc. but don’t see how taking that into the public sphere helps.

  47. gambon

    You want one line that really encapsulates the problems at Arsenal.

    Arsene Wenger, Mar 1st 2016:

    ““Let’s not go overboard, we do not play to be relegated.”

    Doesnt that say it all really?

    To Wenger coming 3rd isnt an underachievement, it means we finished about 17 other teams.

    That is the ambition of the man.

  48. Thank you and goodnight

    It’s alright every body, according to le genius criticism fires up the team…..which must mean we’ve won the EPL and CL for the last 5 years as most of us WOBS have been criticising for last 6 years plus. Fucking bell end

  49. gambon

    Wallace

    I think public criticism of a bunch of underachieving players that keep letting the club down would be quite appropriate sometimes.

    Like Ian Wright said on Saturday, you keep protecting them and they will keep on letting you down.

  50. Carts

    Cesc

    Well Wenger has got a conundrum on his hands, hasn’t he. No sympathy for the fool. A MUST win game, followed by another MUST win game. What a tool the man is. If by miracle we come out of this with 6 points I’ll be gobsmacked and happy.

    My guess is:

    Cech
    _______
    Bellerin
    Mertesacker
    Kos
    Gibbs
    ________
    Elneny
    Coq
    ________
    Ramsey
    Ozil
    Ranchez
    _________
    Giroud

  51. Relieable Sauce

    Swansea have an Italian coach and we have Wenger…They have a decent chance to get a result I’d say. Tight game either way I think.

    Next 2 games I’m being positive with my predictions – Arsenal 4pts, Leicester 4pts, Spurs 2pts, Man City 6pts

  52. Cesc Appeal

    Dissenter

    I agree.

    This type of s**t has been happening for years and years and this place has been slated endlessly, singing our tune now a bit, aren’t they?

    Carts

    Is that for Swansea of Spurs…or both?

    Agreed, no sympathy with him.

    This is what happens though, the amount of people saying ‘a draw isn’t the end of world’ with results like Liverpool, Stoke, Saints, one loss isn’t that bad, against Chelsea…when you continually put off a title push, you end just not pushing.

    It was said on here, when we were ‘grinding’ results at home to Bournemouth and Newcastle, we weren’t grinding at all, we were playing like s**t and getting lucky and bailed out by Cech.

  53. Paulinho

    I’m still laughing at Wenger going on about 2010 and how the players were looking for the next contract and not really united. Yet if you look at this statements at the time he used go on about how great their mental strength was about twice as much as he does now.

    Just shows you much shit the man talks. He literally has no idea or control of the squad at all when it comes to crunch moment.

    In four years time I supposed he will tell us some ‘revelatory’ information about this squad and why it bottled this league campaign, and the AKB’s will be again lapping it up; again looking at it as rare insight the genius mind of their leader.

  54. Wallace

    gambon

    “I think public criticism of a bunch of underachieving players that keep letting the club down would be quite appropriate sometimes.”

    yes, no doubt. but there’s a world of difference between, ‘we were very poor, some players need to take a long hard look at themselves’ and, ‘if everyone was at my level…’. I’d never pass to the shiny c*nt agin if i was playing on the same team.

  55. Carts

    Dissenter

    Stroller should take a listen to that podcast. As where ever Stroller got the impression that it’s the board that we should be blaming for Sunday’s league performances is bollocks of the highest order. Let’s blame Kroenke for starting Walcott and bringing on Iwobi, for a start.

  56. champagne charlie

    wallace

    exactly as gambon said, a public flogging is necessary when the circumstance calls for it. I’d have no issue with someone calling out our duds after the latest farce. Sad part is we barely have a starter who could say anything without their own input being questioned.. Kos at a stretch? Monreal probably. None the sort to have a face on them and say Theo should know better or our CM needs to do the basics.

    Whats the concern with outing people in the eye of the public? That there’s discontent? I fucking hope there is given the state of things.

  57. Carts

    Cesc

    That’s my line up for Swansea. I thought the inclusion of Gibbs was a give away lol.

    I think it hinges on our Swansea performance, with regards to how we shape up against Spurs.

    If we win convincingly then I reckon we’ll swap in Monreal for Gibbs, and maybe Welbeck for Giroud.

  58. champagne charlie

    Wallace

    “i’d never pass to the shiny cunt again if i was in the same team”

    Uhmm that’s the most pathetic thing I’ve heard in a while mate. Cos you get called out for playing shit you have a strop on at the one guy not playing shit? makes sense. Heaven forbid you’d just train harder and get to a level that doesn’t invite such remarks. You sound awfully like one of these people that needs safe spaces because words are hurtful etc.

  59. OleGunner

    “Those expecting a massive clear-out this summer are living in cloud cuckoo land. It ain’t gonna happen.Sure, a few like Arteta, Roskick and Flamini will depart. But in 20 years when did Wenger ever launch a massive clear-out ? Never.One or two signings and a couple of kids stepping. But no more. Deep down, I suspect most rational supporters would agree.”

    Lol I read this on Le Grove so much.
    People saying we’ll sell Ox, Wally, Ramsey, Gabriel, Gibbs in addition to the inevitable exits of Arteta et all. It’s pure banter and just as deluded a way of thinking as Wenger because that shit ain’t happening.

  60. Paulinho

    Wenger probably has banned words up on the wall at Colney, listed under ‘micro-aggressions’.

    Sol Campbell said the environment when he went back in 2010 was completely different to when he left. Players weren’t allowed to dig each other out. It was all peace, love and harmony.

  61. gambon

    To be fair, I would he happy with just upgrading the CM and CF options.

    With Arteta, Flamini, Rosicky leaving its a great chance to buy 2 top quality central midfielders.

    Then sell all our strikers and replace with better.

    4 top class players in, but it will “kill” Ramsey, Coquelin, Walcott, Campbell etc.

  62. Leedsgunner

    “did that actually happen? I saw the dressing room pic that Alexis posted, but nothing out on the pitch…you sure it wasn’t just the photographers covering the game?”

    Wallace

    Let me make my point clearer. In a way it’s immaterial whether this lap of honour happened or not… it’s a pointer to their misplaced and unprofessional attitudes. It’s in the middle of a season where the title race is being fought. Why take a celebratory selfie anyway, it’s just three points… what have they actually won, achieved? They won a game, woo hoo!!!

    If I took a selfie after every negotiation I closed, presentation given or case I won, I would be labelled an arrogant self promoting prat, and rightly so. I take pride in a good job done, and get on with the next job at hand — why can’t they? Why do they need to make such a song and dance about it? You wouldn’t get away with it in any other professional environment.

    Three points is a good day in the office, nothing more or less. Winning games on the salaries they are on should be the minimum expectation and not the exception that needs to be “celebrated” every time. Call me old school but it’s vain unprofessional and incredibly tedious.

    If it is the last game of the season or a cup final fair enough but in the middle of the season where everything is still up in the air — it seems very full of hubris to me.

    Then again why should we expect anything different from these show ponies?

  63. Danny

    Tomorrow night – Swansea takes an early lead thanks to some classic Arsenal defending and then Flapianski plays the game of his life.
    Will we scrap an equalizer in injury?
    Tune in tomorrow night, I for one can’t wait…….

  64. Bamford10

    Win, lose or draw, the other thing that will be clear this weekend is that Tottenham play more stylish football than Arsenal at the moment.

    Arsenal supporters cannot even console themselves with the beauty of our play, which has been little more than a myth the last few years anyways.

  65. Leedsgunner

    If becoming resigned to the fact that we have thrown our chance at the title away… after the weekend. Our rivals are more clinical and disciplined than us to lose or draw games we should have won.

    It’s 2008, 2011, 2014 all over again. Wenger never learns from his mistakes, that’s why he repeats them, again and again.

  66. gambon

    Bamford

    Yep. Spurs are not only a better team than us, but they play better football. That is obvious.

    luckily it cant last long due to the financial differential.

    However, all of the other big clubs are unhappy with where they are.

    We seem to be perfectly content finishing behind teams like Leicester and Spurs.

  67. alexanderhenry

    It’s all about money at arsenal as it is everywhere in football. This list from arseblog neatly illustrates our financial position:

    The current cash balance of £159m should increase to £225-250m by the time the annual accounts are presented in May.

    Arsenal have more cash than any other club in world football.

    At the end of the 2013/14 season, they actually held 40% of the entire Premier League cash balances.

    Not all of the cash balance represents a transfer fund.

    However … we can say with some conviction that Arsenal should have around £100 million to spend in the summer on improving the squad.

    Arsenal have been spending more in the transfer market in the past few seasons … they have the third highest net spend in the Premier League over the past three seasons.

    Arsenal have the seventh highest revenue in the world, based on 2014/15 annual accounts, having overtaken Chelsea last season … but still lie some £100m behind Real Madrid and Barcelona.

    Arsenal are left behind on commercial revenue, but this is being addressed.

    Arsenal enjoy the highest match day income in the world.

    Arsenal’s debt has come down significantly from the £411 million peak in 2008, it is still a heavy burden, requiring an annual payment of around £19 million, covering interest and repayment of the principal.

    The last point- arsenal’s ‘heavy burden’- is no such thing. Considering how much money the club makes and has in the bank , the payment of ‘around £19million” is easily manageable and trashes the idea that we haven’t spent over the last ten years because of the stadium debt. Also, that debt repayment will continue until 2013. So, does it mean the club will continue its penny pinching ways until 2031?

    Spurs and liverpool are about to build new stadia for themselves which will be similar in size to ours.. This is worrying, as it means their match day gate receipts will more or less match arsenal’s, so we will lose that financial advantage.
    In Spurs’ case, their stadium will probably be more expensive than ours. It will be interesting to see whether they embark on an austerity period like arsenal did, or whether they’ll invest further in their squad.

  68. Dissenter

    Bamford,
    “Win, lose or draw, the other thing that will be clear this weekend is that Tottenham play more stylish football than Arsenal at the moment”

    I’m really concerned about Saturday’s NLD.
    Spuds will outrun, out-dribble, physically beat us up and press us when they don’t have the ball.

    Saturday could be the day when the baton is publicly snatched.
    We need players with character on Saturday or it could be the day of the long daggers for fans.

  69. Bamford10

    I’d start Giroud up top and Welbeck wide left. Shift Alexis wide right just to see if changing things up helps his game a little. He’s in a rut of some kind and his play is too predictable.

    __________Cech
    Bell__Mert__Kosc__Monr
    _____Coqu____Rams
    __________Ozil
    Alxs____Giroud____Wlbck

  70. Relieable Sauce

    Far too sensitive some people.
    Criticising Wenger didnt always equate to wanting him sacked or stricken from the history books.Fans wanted him to address the problems first and foremost but he hasnt been willing or able to over many many years. With zero accountability.

    That is not acceptable, yet wobs are/were accused of being unreasonable by the Wenger defenders.

  71. Dissenter

    If current form holds then Saturday will be the day the tide turns against Wenger.
    I won’t go into details to avoid a distinctive spat but if the BETTER team wins as expected then all hell will let loose in gooner land.

    Short term pain for long term relief.
    It’s like lancing a painful boil.

  72. Leedsgunner

    What would happen if Wenger left? The players would up their game for their next manager because they knew their contracts would be on the line. Have a look at Chelsea and how their squad seems to have been rejuvenated.

    As for our ability to sign players, Wenger makes no difference, it’s not like he was incredibly active anyway as demonstrated by last summer.

    The last thing I want Wenger to do is to panic buy. The last time we did that we ended up with Arteta, Park, Santos, Mertesacker and Yossi B (on loan). Apart from BFG, what do we have to show for that idiotic spending?

    Nothing.

    I don’t want Wenger to spend any money… because it makes no difference. Spend £70m + on Özil Sanchez and Cech we’ll probably end up fighting for 3rd or 4th anyways.

    That’s Wenger’s ceiling.

    Wenger is so yesterday, even yesterday don’t want him.

  73. gambon

    In terms of our spending power.

    I worked out that even leaving aside our cash in the bank, we will likely have about £240m to spend in the next 3 seasons.

    The club always plans their expenditure in 3 year periods.

    So we have a new TV deal worth £50m extra over the next 3 years.

    Assuming a wage bill of roughly 55% of revenue (£220m-£230m over the next 3 years) – we will likely have free cash of about £240m,

    So we could spend £80m 3 years running, £120m 2 years running then nothing in year 3.

    My choice would be to spend £200m this summer, then less in the following years.

  74. Danny

    I reckon the only way Wenger will leave at the end of this season is if we loose to Hull and end up 5th.
    If the players decide to do to him what Chelsea players did to Jose then this could happen.
    Actually it might happen anyway.

  75. Leedsgunner

    In terms of our spending power.I worked out that even leaving aside our cash in the bank, we will likely have about £240m to spend in the next 3 seasons.

    Th amount is immaterial, I just don’t want Wenger in control of it. He’ll inevitably buy the same type of players or if he is doesn’t , and they are initial direct and full of power he’ll become neutered and training under Wenger’s tutelage.

    I just want him to go. Today.

    He’s out of ideas. Even his excuses are dull and boring.

  76. gambon

    Leeds

    I agree. Whatever our budget is, it will never get spent with Wenger in charge.

    We are talking about a guy that thought it was fine to go into the season with Flamini and Arteta.

    The mere fact that fans in the street know more than Wenger about football is astonishing.

  77. Dissenter

    I don’t think Wenger leaves at the end of this season, NO MATTER WHAT.
    If we come 5th, be will want to “fulfill” his last year on contract their fix things. He’s always insisted that he will honor his contract.
    I can’t see Wenger missing out on next season’s press conferences not when Guardiola, Mourhino, Conte and Klopp are all out there having fun.

    Wenger LOVES the limelight. He loves feeling professorial at those press conferences.

  78. gambon

    My point was to demonstrate the huge spending power we have available in the coming seasons.

    £240m
    Plus whatever we make from sales
    Plus any new commercial money that comes in

    We could realistically be looking at £300m net investment in the next 3 years.

  79. Leedsgunner

    gambon

    The mere fact that fans in the street know more than Wenger about football is astonishing.

    … and embarrassing… and definitely not worth £8.5m pa — laughable and pitiful really.

  80. Confidentgoner

    Gonah

    My team for tomorrow————-Welbeck————-
    Sanchez–Ramsey–Campbell
    ——-Coquelin–Özil———
    Monreal-Kozz-Mert-Bellerin
    ————–Cech—————

    I agree somewhat with this. I have been stressing that Ramsey will score goals if he is close to a striker. Problem is if you put he deep as CM, he is not very good at holding the ball up. But I would prefer to bench him, bring him in second half and have a more mobile Elneny or Chambers playing deep to allow Ozil freedom to create.

    We need a solid base, Coq is not that guy, but you also need a support CM who defends well and does not go forward too much. A Mikel Obi with pace, or an Arteta on steroids

  81. Bamford10

    Players we might look at to rebuild:

    Ikay Gundogan
    Neven Subotić
    Alvaro Morata

    Just thinking about quality players who could be available at reasonable prices.

    For me we need something like a complete re-build in midfield and attack, and we need a quality CB as well.

    Please add names. 🙂

  82. OleGunner

    Dissenter
    “I don’t think Wenger leaves at the end of this season, NO MATTER WHAT.
    If we come 5th, be will want to “fulfill” his last year on contract their fix things. He’s always insisted that he will honor his contract.”

    This is 100% spot on.
    Wenger is a man of principle when it comes to contracts and even a calamitous collapse at the tail end of this season will mean he honours his contract for “one more go”.

    Of course, that’s in conjunction with an inept and spineless board who wouldn’t have the balls to sack him if everything went tits up.

  83. Danny

    I don’t think Wenger leaves at the end of this season, NO MATTER WHAT
    ——————————————
    Maybe but he did say recently that if we’d lost to Hull in the FA Cup Final he would’ve resigned. Of course he’s an awful liar but maybe there’s hope……

  84. Relieable Sauce

    Wenger has already said much of the new TV money will be used to improve the contracts of the players we already have. He will of course get a salary rise and a contract extension as a result, a golden handshake if the train does leave the tracks.

    Dont think for a second these greasy money grabbing bastards will relinquish their hold without a fight. They have no shame – that much should be evident. Being questioned or even mocked by some parts of the media wont trouble them directly, its down to the fans to force change, as it has always been.

    Chuchills – This is not the end – speech seems apt at this time.

  85. Bamford10

    Dissenter & OleGunner

    Yours is the conventional wisdom, but I think it is misplaced. Wenger has already mentioned that he might’ve left if we hadn’t beaten Hull, and I think the situation could be very ugly if we were to finish fifth. I think there’s a chance that Wenger would actually see that his time is up, that he doesn’t have the energy for another season, more criticism or more disappointment.

    But much criticism and pressure must be brought to bear — beginning now.

    No question he doesn’t leave if we finish top four though.

  86. gambon

    Our front 6 next season (as long as Wenger goes) should be:

    ————Xhaka———Gundogan

    James/Isco——–Ozil————–Sanchez

    ——————–Dybala

  87. Nigel's Left

    Gambon is right. Spend big money in the summer and initiate a change.

    Problem is Wenger will still be there so it will never happen. The club needs a change from top to bottom. Two billionaires who own over 97% of the club with obviously different opinions on what success is and how to achieve it , a manager who is untouchable and a group of average players who are massively overpaid for their abilities.

    I want the big spend but the prudent part of me does not want Wenger to sign anymore players because they won’t all be world beaters or leaders but instead “good value” .You will end up with a situation where a new incoming manager will have to deal with a budget where a large part is taken up in wages for sub standard /injury prone players restricting his ability to strengthen the side.

    How many millions of pounds of wages have sat on the bench or physio’s room. Walcott £140 k ( not even a regular starter), Jack 90-100k (unbelievably bad stats for PL) , Diaby, Flamini, Arteta etc…,

    I want the big spend but the one man i don’t want in charge of it is Wenger . Doesn’t matter anyway because most of that money will go on “player pensions” to under preforming , injury prone players with a soft centre.

    Wenger and Kroenke are massive problems at Arsenal.

  88. Leedsgunner

    Gunners hero Paul Merson said on Sky Sports: ‘If Leicester or Tottenham win the league after (Wenger) said they didn’t need any players, I don’t see how he can keep his job.’”

    Hit the nail on the head.

  89. Bamford10

    To that end, one thing supporters should do is create a new song — a really nice one — which thanks Wenger for his time but says that it is time for him to go. Should be sung at every single match from here on forward regardless result. Should be warm, complimentary and respectful —- but clear.

  90. WengerEagle

    Charlie

    ‘but I’ve no issue with a top class player who performs so consistently having a go at others who aren’t.’

    I think that you’re missing the point a bit here mate, the reason that Ronaldo has gotten so much hassle about throwing his team mates under the bus is because he himself is NOT performing consistently this season.

    Take a look at who he is scoring his goals against, sure he has scored a sackful against the Espanyol’s, Shakhtar’s and Malmo’s of this world but he has drawn blanks against Barcelona, Atletico Madrid twice, Villarreal, Malaga twice, Real Betis, Sevilla, Valencia, PSG twice, Athletic Bilbao away and Sporting Gijon.

    What’s significant about all these matches is that Real Madrid failed to win a single one of these matches besides PSG at home in the UCL. He simply hasn’t stepped up to the plate in one match where Real needed him to outside of Roma away with a deflected goal.

    He’s goal-hanging much more than he used to as well, his dribbles per match and touches outside of the opposition third have plummeted.

    Real Madrid have become much more reliant on Benzema and Bale who are both out-performing Ronaldo this season.

  91. WengerEagle

    ‘Alvaro Morata’

    I never boarded the Morata hype train tbh.

    The lad has only scored 8 goals in all comps this season (35 apps) you are aware?

    That’s 10 less than Giroud.

    And before you say it, I’m aware that he does more than Giroud all round but the simple fact is that the lad doesn’t score enough goals.

  92. WengerEagle

    ‘we need a quality CB as well.’

    Carts put forward a very good shout in Koulibaly. Right age at 24.

    He’s had a great season at Napoli, practically holds that backline together. Ghoulam at LB is a baller too.

  93. Leedsgunner

    “And before you say it, I’m aware that he does more than Giroud all round but the simple fact is that the lad doesn’t score enough goals.”

    What about to replace Walcott then? Younger hungrier and more clinical. Moot point though Juventus won’t let him go and he won’t want to go to play under Wenger.

    For those of you think Wenger’s greatest asset is his ability to bring in players, think about this, the longer he stays and presides over this car crash of a season, the more he inhibits world class players from coming to play under him. He needs to go… and if it was up to me Simeone would be on the next flight to London.

  94. gambon

    WengerEagle

    I would prefer to get rid of Ozil and play 4-3-3 but its not gonna happen.

    Ozil has a lot of weaknesses, but if you put a rock solid midfield behind him, and goalscorers in front of him, we can be successful.

  95. gambon

    What about Dybala and Batshuayi ?

    I would keep one of Giroud and Welbeck and sell the rest of our attack.

  96. WengerEagle

    Leeds

    For what Juventus are quoting we’d be better off looking elsewhere, take away penalties and he hasn’t even outscored Walcott this season.

    Dybala is more than twice the player that Morata is.

  97. WengerEagle

    ‘What about Dybala and Batshuayi ?’

    Dybala IMO has a much higher ceiling, he alone could transform our attack.

    He’s Real Madrid/Barcelona good though so wouldn’t be surprised to see him end up as Suarez’s replacement in 3-4 years (Suarez is 29) or Ronaldo’s replacement at Real Madrid much sooner.

  98. WengerEagle

    gambon

    I’m the same tbh, would rather another player in there instead of Ozil for Champions League matches especially but he’s the least of our problems and if we can sort out the midfield behind him and get in a Giroud upgrade we’d compete. (Not for the UCL mind)

    Gundogan and Xhaka is what I fear City’s CM partnership will look like next season though.

  99. Red&White4life

    “…but if you put a rock solid midfield behind him, and goalscorers in front of him, we can be successful.”

    Please add “and if you get rid of wenger”, thanks.

  100. champagne charlie

    WengerEagle

    Nah not missing any point, Ronaldo by HIS standards is being relatively average but that still means his contribution is top tier at the very least. Certainly not why Real are so pony at present, and he’s spot on to say if others were at his ‘poor’ level they would be doing much much better. Context.

    So once again, no issue with chewing out the duds in the spotlight. Would love some of that over here.

  101. azed

    “If the players decide to do to him what Chelsea players did to Jose then this could happen.
    Actually it might happen anyway.”

    Would you want your boss who pays you 50% more than you would earn elsewhere for less the pressure to be fired?

  102. Leedsgunner

    ‘We have won big games this season, many big games with exactly the same players. I don’t feel that I lack leaders.’

    Translation: I don’t have a problem, why are you criticising me?

  103. Carts

    It’s interesting cos people will quickly say “we shouldn’t go out and spend all that money as it won’t guarantee us success”, and this is true.

    But the fact of the matter is that we’ve under invested quite considerably and in order to stay relevant and maintain our “big club” status, we must spend. Unfortunately, Wenger isn’t the guy to do it.

    Gundogan would render Ramsey obsolete. Xhaka downgrades Coquelin to a domestic cup player.

    I watched Weigl over the weekend again and he’s a nice player. I think right now we need players who will substantially improve us.

  104. tenerife gooner

    Come back Kevin Richardson all is forgiven.Come back Perry Groves,you used to drive me crazy,but you played with passion.If Theo played with your heart ,he could be worth his 140.

  105. champagne charlie

    “Gundogan would render Ramsey obsolete. Xhaka downgrades Coquelin to a domestic cup player.”

    Nobody is obsolete with the acquisition of another player, just down the pecking order which is exactly where both Ramsey and Coquelin (and theo, Bellerin, Giroud, Per/Gab) should be.

  106. Leedsgunner

    But the fact of the matter is that we’ve under invested quite considerably and in order to stay relevant and maintain our “big club” status, we must spend. Unfortunately, Wenger isn’t the guy to do it.

    100% agree.

  107. OleGunner

    Bamford,

    I see what you mean that the tides are essentially turning on AW, but I just feel that the FA cup wins bought the man enough extra time for him and the board to agree that no matter what, he lives until 2017 at the least.

    Hopefully Wenger can have the dignity to resign after failing (or winning lol) the league.

  108. WengerEagle

    Charlie

    Not really, he’s been far below Benzema and Bale this season, which is why the timing of his comments is strange. Why do you think that Real Madrid are struggling to win so many matches this season? Surely Ronaldo not scoring goals in tight matches has a big part to play with it?

    If it were 2013/14 he would have every right to have a bit of a whinge at his team mates.

    Out of all those matches only 2 were really down to the defence being appalling, the 4-0 massacre at the Bernabeu where Kroos and Modric were left to fend for themdselves as the front 4 (including Ronaldo) simply were not interested. And the match where Sevilla put 3 goals past them.

  109. Carts

    Eagle

    I’ve got a soft spot for a couple Napoli players and while watching Napoli x Fiorentina last night, Koulibaly was on form again!

    I like Ghoulam as well; but Telles has been unsung in that shit performing Inter team, and unlike Ghoulam he’ll cost about £10m tops.

    “What about Dybala and Batshuayi ?”

    Batshuayi would be the cheaper options, obviously. But Dybala, at present, is your more polished player. We can afford both but will get neither!

  110. Leedsgunner

    Gundogan would render Ramsey obsolete. Xhaka downgrades Coquelin to a domestic cup player.

    THe problem is Wenger, he’s been playing for the past 4-5 years with squad players, convincing them that they were of starter quality. But ask yourself this, would players like Ramsey Gibbs, Wilshere, Walcott and Oxlade be given such exalted statuses in any of our rivals?

    Because our starters of squad quality, no wonder our 2nd XI can’t hack it even versus Championship sides. There is a lack quality all the way through the club, including much of the scouting, rehab and coaching staff.

    Had Wenger spent the past five years buying a top GK, a top DM, a couple of top STs and a commanding CB, actually in depth we would we well set up if we add Giroud, Ramsey etc. to that lot… they would be good squad players who would have added consistency and stability for us compete on all four fronts.

  111. Danny

    Would you want your boss who pays you 50% more than you would earn elsewhere for less the pressure to be fired?
    ———————————-
    Good point plus he doesn’t treat them like shit as say Pep or Jose but something was definitely wrong with them against Man U.
    A lot talk about the fact we have no leaders or that no one player will shout at another etc.
    Well our great manager has for the last few seasons appointed (and payed well) club captains that haven’t played – Vermaelen and Arteta.
    It’s all so fucked up.

  112. champagne charlie

    WengerEagle

    Except Ronaldo wasn’t aiming criticism at those who have been playing well at Real obviously… he was talking about the Jese’s and Kovacic’s that are basically not good enough for Real period. If anyone’s earned the right to express that level of annoyance at the quality of his team-mates I’d wager it was him. Regardless of him performing ‘poorly’ as you claim, he’s still scored 34 in 33 and his presence alone is a factor in these tight games your’e going on about.

    Why goals are the only measure of a player in big games is anyones guess -occupying space and creating space is such an overlooked aspect of football…. Ronaldo still does this better than most in the world just by virtue of standing on the pitch.

  113. Cesc Appeal

    ‘We have won big games this season, many big games with exactly the same players. I don’t feel that I lack leaders.’

    But when asked who he felt his leaders in the team were, Wenger declined to mention any names.

    He added: ‘The team, in every position. The players lead and we try to develop that with our work. Our job is to have a leader in every position.’

    Daily Mail

    F**k me, how much more evidence is needed, Wenger just doesn’t have a clue.

  114. WengerEagle

    Carts

    Telles is quality, he was at Galatasaray before Inter wasn’t he?

    Murillo has also been impressive, young Colombia CB.

    Their lack of creativity in midfield and potency up front has cost them big time, Icardi hasn’t come close to matching his form last season and Kondogbia hasn’t been great since he’s signed.

    Same, my favourites off Napoli are Allan and Insigne who I think is quality.

    Algeria NT have some serious talent with Ghoulam, Brahimi, Mahrez, Islam Slimani who can’t stop scoring for Sporting Lisbon, Feghouli and Boudebouz.

    Fancy them to win the next ACON.

  115. N5

    So it’s FA cup or bust again this year then?

    Wenger yet again insisted we didn’t need any new players and yet again we bottled against a top 4 team. When is it enough?

    Leicester or Tottenham winning the league this year (painful as it is) would be the best thing to happen. Where would Wenger hide then? can’t we compete with the spending power of the Spuds or the sugardaddies of Leicester?

  116. Danny

    he lives until 2017 at the least.
    ————————–
    Sorry but had to laugh at this typing error.

  117. kingHenry

    Charlie,

    Players like Ronaldo actually do more harm than good. He actually plays to the detriment of the team, much like Ramsey with more talent.
    He was a great player two years ago, but like Wenger, he’s regressed, and he’s remained as arrogant as ever.

    The main problem with us is that our longest serving players (like Theo, Wilshere) are actually still immature, and are loved by Wenger. Thus no one can challenge him. Great teams always have that experienced player who has spent his best years at the club e.g Pep’s Barca with Xavi, present day Barca with Messi, Iniesta, Pique; Bayern with Lahm, Ribery; Mou’s Inter with Zanetti; and a bunch of other examples.

  118. N5

    “The team, in every position. The players lead and we try to develop that with our work. Our job is to have a leader in every position.”

    Clueless.

  119. Leedsgunner

    Leicester all the way if AFC is going to f*** it up. I can’t stomach a Spurs triumph no matter how well deserved. We would never ever hear the end of it. Sorry.

  120. N5

    Fully agree Leeds, Leicester would be the choice of every Gooner, but I have this horrible feeling that the Spuds are going to win it. Tottenham winning it might anger even the most placid of supporter though, so every cloud and all that!

  121. Red&White4life

    “Leicester or Tottenham winning the league this year (painful as it is) would be the best thing to happen.”

    Tottenham would be the best “solution” lol

  122. WengerEagle

    Charlie

    I hope that’s not what he meant, what digging out two youngsters? Jese hasn’t even played badly and Kovacic while not playing that well hasn’t been that bad either. I didn’t see Neymar or Suarez bitching about Munir and Sandro who are both worse players than Jese and Kovacic while Messi was out injured. They got on with it and played out of their skin and actually raised their game, winning Barcelona basically every match in that timeframe.

    ‘Why goals are the only measure of a player in big games is anyones guess -occupying space and creating space is such an overlooked aspect of football…. Ronaldo still does this better than most in the world just by virtue of standing on the pitch.’

    I get your point but it’s a bit silly, surely the same could be said about Wayne Rooney then given how brilliant a player he had been for a decade?

    It’s not just about goals it’s his general involvement or lack of it. He has played very poorly in a lot of matches which has ultimately contributed to costing Real Madrid La Liga once again.

    I also said that he’s been playing poorly in those matches that I listed, NOT in the other matches which explains why he is averaging a goal a game overall. But what good is padding your stats with a hat-rick vs Espanyol if you play like shit the next week against a Malaga and your side drop 2 points?

    La Liga isn’t like the BPL as the presence of Barca means that you really can’t afford to drop many points.

  123. Red&White4life

    “Arsene Wenger says Arsenal will use criticism of their performance against Manchester United to fuel their bid for the Premier League title.”

    Not even funny (lol)

  124. Relieable Sauce

    With Wengers tactical limitations he cant compete in this enviroment without a set of WC players comparable to The Invincables or his 1st double winning team.

    We need around 4/5 specific WC players to get back to that level. If you dont believe thats what what is needed, or Wenger and the transfer team are capable of doing what is necessary, you are setting yourself up for yet another disappointment.

    CM is an issue – he signs Arteta-Flamini-Elneny
    CB is an issue – he signs Mert-Gabriel-Chambers
    CF is an issue – he signs Chamahk-Park-Sanogo
    GK is an issue – he signs Almunia-Szczesney-Ospina

    Makes me laugh when people say, “Wenger needs to do this and that”.
    Fuck right off is what he needs to do.

  125. Carts

    Leeds

    I agree with you there, mate. And this is something that is apparent, and has been for just as long as you’ve mentioned. In other words, for as long as “constraint” have been lifted, imho.

    Wenger, contrary to AKB beliefs, deliberately buys/fields players that are far too inferior to one another. I lie to use quality disparity. Why he does this is anyone’s guess. I mean, Flamini and Sanchez on the same pitch? really??

    This is the man who stuck with Almunia and wouldn’t pay Fulham a couple mob bob for Scwarzher.

  126. Jim lahey

    Walter from Untold –

    “There are plenty of better managers out there. You can find them even on Untold. And on any other Wenger out blog. :)”

    The guy has become a parody of himself at this point.

    “Remember, getting rid of a manager is easy. Finding a better manager is harder.”

    I wonder if people like him will actually support the club once Wenger is gone? Or will they follow Wenger to what ever poor unsuspecting club pays him 7 million a year next.

  127. Carts

    Eagle

    Telles : I read that there is an agreement in place for Inter to sign him for e8m. Unlikely now that they won’t be making top 3 – same allegedly goes for Jovetic and Ljacic.

    Murillo is a beast as well. Very good signing, tbh. I read he was owned by Udinese and came via Granada. I like Juan too.

    Mancini, imo, has tinkered way too much. Kondogbia hasn’t set the word alight but he and others are over-rotated.

    For example, he had Ljajic, Eder Perisic and Jovetic on the bench vs Juventus. Icardi – who you rightfully pointed out has been shit – was partnered with Palacio.; with zero creativity in their midfield. Thoir must be fuming after the money he’s spent.

    Napoli definitely have solid players. Laurentiis called Higuain chubby now he won’t sign a new deal O_O