Can Ivan afford to keep Wenger this summer?

by .

courtesy @allthatchas

courtesy @allthatchas

Lots of strong opinion and conversation still flooding the Arsenal web space. I think it’s interesting because the tone isn’t vitriolic, it’s measured and accepting that Wenger has hit his limit. It took the cautious and loyal majority way longer than it should of to get there, but hey, we’re there now. I don’t want to bang on this for too long, but we called this 8 years ago, were labelled crazies that lacked credibility, and look where we are? And not just us… so many fans hammered for calling it correctly. Anyway, who cares, feels like something might break, especially if something unspeakable happens this weekend.

Key for me is that Arsenal fans don’t let an inevitable victory against Spurs shift perception. Wenger is done. Beating Spurs would be great, but not enough to lift the shame of our terrible planning and our lack of progress under absolute optimal circumstances. If you can’t make hay now, and serious hay that impacts our growth in the league and Europe, then you’re never going to traverse what’s coming to the league from next season.

So this is what is on my mind now. What is Ivan thinking?

He’s a smart businessman. He’ll see many things. He’ll see his customers are not happy and he’ll feel that. He’s an emotional guy despite the public facade. He’ll see what’s going on at the club, he’s already chopped in new everything over the past few seasons because he knows what a shit show Wenger is. He’ll also see what’s coming. Ivan is a strategist to most things bar the bits he can’t control… the manager and his choices.

… but, he’s been able to coast up until now. Top 4 was always protected. Rich clubs allowed us to focus on money being the Arsenal issue when it was clear brains could and should be the focus of our betterment. Other clubs couldn’t compete with us. Wenger out was just for the fringe. Now though, it’s clear Wenger is being out manoeuvred by smaller smaller clubs, with weaker players by managers who have achieved this in record time. He’ll know that Klopp is a force, Pep is a force and Mourinho with money will make United better again. Don’t even mention the fact Leicester and Spurs are as good if not better than us already.

So he has a decision. Be the CEO who let a Clough moment happen under his watch, or be the man who cut it short before it got bad. History will already look back on this phase of Wenger as a massive mistake, the longest most self indulgent golden fuck off of all time. Question is, does Ivan want to go down in the history books as the guy who facilitated the malaise because he was weak? Does he want to be the guy who people refer to as a Wenger hire? Does he think his inaction will be written about in Arsenal books of the future as a positive?

We have an opportunity this summer to move a failing manager on. We have the chance to kick start summer with a man who has a short term plan to fix the squad balance, a long term strategy for dominance equipped with a vision that is of this era. The stars are aligned here, we need someone to pull the trigger and set the next chapter alight.

We can’t let Wenger loose with the cheque book. We need someone who knows what they’re doing and we need someone to protect the great players we already have. Because look, the squad is 80% there. It just needs some thought. Better balance. Better plan b options. Some fight injected in there. Someone to instil the belief Sanchez says is missing.

The decision to move Wenger on has been the right one for 5+. Ivan must know this, but does he have the nerve to fight Stan on it? Or does Stan have to see complete failure before he’ll do something good for the club? Or alternatively, it’d be great if Wenger could see this coming… and move himself on before the milk turns from sour to rancid.

A big summer for Ivan. Powerful rich men care about the narrative history writes them. Sporting history never dies. Great men hailed, the weak mocked. How does he want to be remembered?

I know how I would… hopefully he feels the same.

Two good reads, one on the history of Wenger planning and one on new managers. Top reads!



1,231 Responses to “Can Ivan afford to keep Wenger this summer?”

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  1. S Asoa

    So the Consensus Now is

    GO AWAY WENGER YOU CUNT …walk away and don’t look back.
    This kitchen floor rag should have left at least 2 years back.
    Shameless leach max deserves £8.2 salary

  2. alexanderhenry

    I noticed several rumours that might have some truth in them.

    First, wenger might be ‘invited to leave’ this season. Depending on how things go, I think there’s some truth in that. It really wouldn’t surprise me if he walked. If he stays, I’m convinced he won’t renew his contract after next season.

    Second, Patrick viera is apparently a candidate for the job. Now, I don’t know if there’s any truth in that at all, but I think he is the type of manager the club would look to bring in. Notice how no top manager, (guardiola, klopp, simeone, ancelotti, mourihno), is ever linked with arsenal. This is because the board will look for someone who can essentially emulate wenger- run the club on the cheap and qualify top four with maybe the odd cup win.

    Third, Klopp will be given a large war chest this summer- around £100 million. This makes perfect sense to me. Why would a top manager like klopp join liverpool? Despite their glorious past and the slightly fortunate CL win under benitez, Liverpool are a club who haven’t been seriously in the running for 20 years and have a mess of a squad. Make no mistake Klopp will have to build that team from scratch. It won’t be easy, so why would he take that job? The answer is that he has been guaranteed a large amount of money to spend and full and consistent financial support by the owners.

    Will arsenal appoint a big name manager to replace wenger and will they guarantee a similar level of financial investment in players?

    I have my doubts.

  3. alexanderhenry


    That’s a fair assessment. We would have won it if coquelin hadn’t messed up. Great goal by ramsey as well.

  4. Cesc Appeal

    There’s not a chance Wenger gets sacked or ‘invited to leave,’ they’ve seen it all before at Arsenal, this is an annual thing, they will just wait for a decent run of meaningless results at the end of the season and the fans will be placated again, well the majority of them.

    Pump out some stories about ‘war chests’ and big spending, some quotes from players in the squad about ‘hunger’ and ‘togetherness,’ complete speculative assumptions about Walcott scoring 25 goals and Wilshere having new legs grafted onto his body…and then round we go again next season.

  5. Jeff


    Express are also saying it but I still say it’s just click whoring. The fact is that the target is top four. It always has been. So there is no basis for sacking or him leaving. If we drop beneath top four things might get a bit sticky but it’s unlikely.

  6. Jeff

    There are other reports that say Ozil will only sign a new contract if we win the league. Well that won’t happen but maybe a prize just as good (if not better) is that a new manager might persuade him to stay. We have gone so stale, so out of touch that even players are beginning to see it.

  7. alexanderhenry

    Cesc appeal

    Wenger may walk. I wouldn’t bet against it.


    To quote you: ‘The fact is that the target is top four. It always has been’

    That’s quite right, but who’s fault is that? Who sets the bar at arsenal fc?

  8. Cesc Appeal


    I doubt it hugely.

    His principles are what holds him back from success, the fact he won’t depart from them and the fact he won’t cede some power to modern, top rate coaches.

    It is those same principles that will mean he thinks he’s doing the ‘honourable’ thing in fighting through criticism to see out the last year of his deal. In fact, quitting would be the honourable thing to do.

    As much as I would still be livid at Wenger for wasting a golden chance this year at the title and leaving our squad in a bad state, he would regain a lot of respect if he just said ‘I made a mistake, I can’t take this team any further so I’m stepping aside.’

    He will do the total opposite to that though.

  9. Dissenter

    Westham are three points behind us and are in an ebullient form.
    We have to still play them away and it’ s likely that they will beat us.

    Wenger will still walk at the end of the season.

  10. Jeff


    The top four target is a consensus between the owner, Gazidis, Wenger and the board. When Chips made that crazy statement about “When Arsene has a plan we listen and when he doesn’t we keep quiet”, it meant that most likely it is Wenger that sets that goal. He has been given the power to do most things, including set player salaries, so it is no surprise that he sets his own goals.

    This year is different because the old excuse about competing with big money clubs has gone down the drain. It is a nightmare situation for Wenger and his AKBs because that sacred excuse can no longer be used and most of us on here knew anyway that it was irrelevant given the small difference in total wage bill between us and them. But if the other three implode and we still cannot win the league, it is completely and totally on the manager and there is no getting away from it.

  11. R.S.P.C.Arsenal

    These rumours are all bollocks bout him being invited if we lose against hull blah blah

    The only positive is that the media are beginning to turn on an aggressive way against him

    That is what I find encouraging

  12. Cesc Appeal


    The media narrative seems to have shifted sightly, its gone from should he go, to will he and it not being likely that he will actually relinquish control.

  13. wenker-wanger

    Wenger’s stats are only impressive in his first 6 years. Its absolutely certain that the success in this period was in a large part down to the graham magnificent back 5 plus romford Pele (underrated in the extreme). Weighty and of course DB10. The other factor was the French superstars that knocked on Wenger’s door to play for him. All in all it fell in his lap. What Wenger did was to provide top quality diet,training and at the time cutting edge fitness regimes. So give Wenger a small amount of credit, but a complete manager he most certainly wasnt and isn’t. Now he has lost any attributes he did have anywayanyway. I really hope George graham continues to be connected to the trophies we won with the great tony Adams, and Wenger’s outright influenced trophy wins IMO are the 2 recent fa cups where those teams were built by him, nothing fell in his lap.

  14. Joe

    So I must of been on to something if the press are talking about wenger’s job in jeopardy if we lose to hull.

    Spuddies fucked it for us. Needed them to beat us.

    Oh well. Let’s hope hull do what spurs couldn’t and get rid of the old cunt ruining our club.

    And on current form, I wouldn’t say bron is a gimme 3 points.

    The crowd is on edge. Early goal by brom and they will turn. Or if it starts 0-0 for a bit

    Whatever it takes to get Wenger out of our club

  15. wenker-wanger

    @ Joe, couldn’t agree more. Fans knock us for wanting arsenal to lose, but how else is the tosser going to leave?. Its like surgery, you don’t like it and it hurts, but when the white gets removed from the body, regeneration begins.

  16. Jeff

    Coq hasn’t been the same since his injury. I don’t know what it is about injuries and what happens to players when they come back but the only one that hasn’t suffered in form after an injury appears to be Welbeck.

  17. Joe

    It would be like you’ve been separated from your true love girl for a decade. She’s been dating some old cunt of a loser who hasn’t been able to please her for a decade.
    The old cunt fucks off and you run into her again in August and she looks better than she ever did. And you fall in love with her more than ever before.

    Ahhhhhh. Arsenal without wenger will me the most beautiful thing.

    A thing of glory.

  18. Redtruth

    Taken from ArsenalTruth

    On Monday, the website Swiss Ramble published details of Arsenal’s latest set of accounts.
    Here are some highlights:

    – Arsenal’s cash balance stands at £159m, but will rise to approx. £250m by September

    – £45m of the cash balance needs to be kept aside for player amortisation

    – Arsenal have more cash in the bank than any other club in world football

    – Stadium debt remains at £14m pa – equivalent to Theo Walcott’s annual salary x 2

    – Arsenal have the third highest net spend in the Premier League over the past three seasons

    – Arsenal have the seventh highest revenue in the world, having overtaken Chelsea last season

    – Arsenal enjoy the highest match day income in the world

    – Bar Juventus, Arsenal’s commercial income trails every team in the Deloitte Money League Top 10. Considering Wenger keeps reminding us how Arsenal are in the CL every year, it makes you wonder what Ivan Gazidis is doing to earn his £2.2m salary (and bonuses) if he can’t take advantage of the club’s profile

    – The wage bill gap of the top 4 giants is closing: Arsenal £192m (current amount not published in latest accounts but probably higher due to spate of new contracts), Chelsea £216m, Man United £203m, Man City £194m.

    The difference between Arsenal and Chelsea is probably three very well-paid players, of which Arsenal can easily afford.

  19. Relieable Sauce

    If the decision for Wenger to step down comes, it will be because their pride and false credibility wont stand up to the scrutiny thats coming their way. The fans wont act to enforce change and will be appeased enough by any appointment they make and even wenger moving upstairs.

    Stadium boycotts/walkouts must happen if fans want to see change at Arsenal.

    Lets not deny the facts either that this cant be done at the Emirates or it has no effect either. Thats utter bs.

  20. Goona


    “– Stadium debt remains at £14m pa – equivalent to Theo Walcott’s annual salary x 2″….

    In that case sell twinkle toes theo….utter waste of money…

    The clubs a bloody joke from top to bottom. Wenger out

  21. 30

    Interesting that Pete posted this on March 4. I read it on March 6, and realize the result of the Spurs game does not affect Pete’s narrative message nor the timeliness of it. Results of our games are now secondary to the blooming realization across planet Arsenal that the old order is done and a change must be dispatched while we have a window to keep Ozil this summer. “Will Mesut stay or go”, I think is the question that in a functional organization may be a big factor in driving managements big decisions.

  22. Wallace

    George Graham’s ‘famous back 5’ conceded 49 goals in Graham’s last season in charge(finished 12th but spent most of the season in 15/16th until Graham’s sacking saw an upturn in results). 3yrs later under Wenger, when most of them no doubt were fancying themselves as false 9s, they conceded 16 goals on their way to the title.