So a pretty damn fine day of football for Arsenal fans yesterday (or today if you’re reading it on a Sunday).
United stumbled at Leicester as they shipped a one-goal lead within about 9 minutes of taking it. Interesting watching United at the moment, they have a lot of pace in their set up, Lindegaard and Martial are quite the pairing. Shame they still play ‘lob it to the tall one who’s a bit average’ tactics, but whatever. Good news is it looks like LVG will be staying there next season. Hilarious for poor old Mourinho.
City took a major spanking away at Southampton, very Arsenal like. They rested 8 players in preparation for their Madrid semi (unArsenal) and paid the price. Always great to Samir hacking it out with the second stringers (LOLOLOLOL). Can’t wait to see what Pep thinks of him.
That leaves Arsenal with the job of taking out one of City or Villa to win a pass into ELITE EURO FOOTBALL. Another chance to show Europe we’re good for qualifiers and that’s about it! Jokes aside, 3rd really is important. If we lose that, and City win the Champions League, there won’t be a 4th place trophy this year (if City finish 5th).
We take on City after they play an away game at Madrid. So that’s good news for us. More time to prepare. More time to rest. Higher chance of us turning in a result next week.
The dust has settled on the protest. Everyone clawing for a narrative. I think my view yesterday that plenty in the ground want change, they just don’t want to protest, is pretty near the truth. I think that was kind of summed up by the shoddy atmosphere, the jeering of the players and subs and the lack of a turnout we’ve seen as another season judders to a bland on toast finish.
… but, you know what. If fans want Wenger to stay, that’s great. I mean, I struggle to see how anyone who spends their hard-earned on Arsenal can stomach what they’re seeing season after season, but maybe it’s just a nice day out? Maybe watching a once great man in decline because it feels nice is what football is all about these days. Perhaps I’m missing the bigger picture here. Maybe winning isn’t as important as ensuring Arsene has a lovely send off on his own never-ending timeline?
Or maybe that’s nonsense. Who knows. I find it interesting that the same fans complaining there’s no atmosphere have no interest in fighting for the things that help get you one. Namely, a winning team, full of players we can connect with, exciting the f*ck out of us every week, playing incredible football at a breath-taking tempo.
It was funny to hear Wenger go at a reporter when asked how it made him feel to see empty seats and white A4 pieces of paper with the politest ‘Do One’ message ever witnessed in sport.
“I will come to your newspaper and do it as well, and ask you after how you feel,”
Someone should tell Arsene that this sort of thing, in a working environment, is called having a boss / a client / … or being truly accountable for performances. Not accountable to your own rules.
What must be interesting are the conversations Arsenal have with the sponsors. People talk about Arsene being a business man, well, he’ll know full well that sponsorship deals for teams that don’t win will generally be less. I wonder what Puma say to Ivan? It can’t be pretty. Empty seats, fans booing in open revolt (middle-class open revolt, like the sort you see at the Duchess of Kent on a Sunday when they run out of lamb at 2pm) against the manager… the team are not exactly delivering on the high-performance partnership they must have been expecting from their premier partner.
Still, I’m sure the corporate team understands. As shrewd business people, you can’t imagine they’re enjoying this. It’s not like Wenger’s behaviour is setting us for mega financial success… and that’s my one hope about this weekend’s shenanigans. At worst, it’s one more season before he packs his bags. Because a new three-year deal feels like it could be real… and that would be a disaster for the fans and for him… because he doesn’t have the tools to take this on for 3 more years.
It’d also be a disaster for Arsenal fans. It makes me feel sick to the pit of my stomach. It truly does. I just don’t know how I’d deal with Wenger until 2020.
And that’s my thing… Wenger is killing the joy of Arsenal for me. Yesterday’s game had no fun about it, nothing wowed me… the biggest talking point after the game being that Arsene Wenger made a sub earlier than the usual 70minute mark. Don’t get me wrong, it’s progress… but look at where we’re taking progress signs from? Our manager, who has suffered because he’s been predictable for 12 years, made an early sub and secretly, we’re all saying…
‘maybe that’s the moment it clicked for him? MAYBE HE’S GONNA DO A MAGIC THIS SUMMER’
… because we’re Arsenal fans. Battered partner syndrome over here. We never learn.
We get mad… then it all gets a bit too real and aggressive, we feel guilty about bagging on crazy relative who bought some lovely Christmas presents in the nineties, then we find an isolated incident and point to that being the reason supporting Wenger leaving is in bad taste…
‘People sang about Wenger dying!’
‘Same people who shouted at him at Stoke I reckon?’
‘They enjoyed him falling down at the airport’
‘WHAT HAVE WE BECOME’
Now anyone who questions the manager is an AFC militant. NOT that I’m saying singing about Wenger dying is in any way tolerable. But using that stick to beat fans with is like saying all away support is shite because I heard four make hissing noises at a game once. There are fans that behave like drunk idiots (because that’s what they are), there always will be… but this pattern of going down the ‘Wenger may have whoopsied this season, but I can’t tolerate the abuse’… because we all know it’s just another way of shifting the story from the real problem at hand.
Arsene and his over-stayed welcome.
I promise you we’ll look back at this embarrassing pussy footing in years to come and not believe we tolerated it. Far too much of our malaise is wrapped up in this misappropriation of the term ‘class’… which for me, is basically losing in style and then celebrating all the reasons losing was actually fine, because, you know, socialism and brexit and then taking aim at clubs that win with no style, showcasing how that’s bad for the world and kids who have no role models.
I need to stop writing this. I’m losing my mind. It’s just football. It’s just one or three more years… or more, depending on how he’s feeling?
How long does it go on for, seriously? Someone wake me up when it’s over.
THIS GUY MADE ME HAPPY. Watch and enjoy. No bullshit, straight to the point. Well said son. Good on you for calling out the absolute hypocrisy in the ground!
Right, gonna jump out a window. Have a great day my dears! And remember, it’s just football… honest… no big deal… THIS IS RUINING MY LIFE.
KILL ME. xxx