Arsene Pays For Negligent Squad Management

by .

Arsenal had the opportunity to show the soft underbelly they’re famous for had matured and grown some dragon skin. They predictably failed, losing their guts to a paper sword.

I have to put the excuses on the table right away. The refereeing decisions were unacceptable. Losing out to two offside decisions is pretty painful in a game of such importance, but until we start giving refs tech to work with we’re going to keep facing these issues in a game that pushes the boundaries of speed with players, but continues to hire old refs well into their late thirties and early forties. The solution is too simple and too available to work myself into a frenzy. I also believe we should rotate refs from Europe to remove the obvious localization bias that exists.

… but look, let’s not pretend we weren’t totally out maneuvered last night. Arsene Wenger, at the highest level, is dead. You know this, I know this, we all know this. Yesterday, we were out thought and fought by a team missing its core. Pep, and let’s be fair here, Arteta, saw us coming a million miles off. We offered nothing.

Firstly, the chickens came home to roost with our team selection. Arsene Wenger’s cut and paste team sheet ran out of steam hard. The manager firstly reverted to a Leicester City game plan, you sense not because of tactical reasons, but because the players didn’t have the energy to hit city with an aggressive press. We were embarrassingly dominated in the first half, but you sensed it might have been built that way with the hope of a fast counter. I mean, it looked good when Theo latched onto Sanchez’ reverse pass and slotted home after 4mins. However, as the City pass number racked up to absurd levels, you started to worry we were just not at the races.

We couldn’t pass our way out of their press, it looked planned, allow us to lose the ball in midfield, then release Sterling or Sane to beast our shapeless back line. The second half saw us pay the penalty, Sane picked up the remnants of a poor Petr Cech hoof, he ghosted through our defense and brushed his shot low into the corner. The second came from a KDB cross that Silva swiped at before Sterling rattled home near post. Completely interfering with play and very upsetting the officials missed it, but that’s football.

From there, we had nothing. The tank was empty. Our players were all dying. There was a visible lack of fight and leadership. We should have taken that early lead and pushed hard for a second and a third. Instead, we gave up and prayed we could hold on.

We have to admit that there’s a problem with Ozil, his level of interest in yesterday was low even for him. He is a half season player who at best has a fitness problem, at worse has an attitude problem. He’s been appalling two games in a row when we needed him to step up.

Coquelin once again showed that he’s totally not built for the highest level, he has no ability on the ball under pressure and he’s a real weakness in a midfield Wenger can’t leave him out of. Running about like a headless chicken doesn’t win you league titles these days. When the tactics of the opposition are geared around your players losing the ball under pressure, you have a serious issue.

Most of my irk goes the way of Wenger. For him to take a full side to Basel was negligent and stupid. For him not to rotate across Stoke or Everton was beyond the pale, but ever so predictable and we ran out of gas when it mattered. The Premier League requires a different level of fitness. Arsene Wenger can’t fathom it. The worst thing is he still doesn’t understand it when he has a squad to help. Why isn’t Perez playing games? Why isn’t Giroud being rotated in? Why is Rambo on the shitlist? These guys don’t get game time until Wenger destroys our star names or the team looks so heavy legged he has to. It’s not smart, and if I can call these problems, why can’t Wenger?

City were there for the taking. Wenger had a better squad of players. Pep out thought him and his team out fought Arsenal. We didn’t have a plan capable of taking down a weakened City. We lost major ground in the title race in the same way we always do. Underprepared and out strategized. It’s amazing to say that after berating Wenger for so many years for asking us to think big picture. But his biggest flaw is he doesn’t think strategically.

We don’t have a plan for fitness management. We don’t have a plan for managing players psychologically, and I don’t mean bringing in someone to talk about feelings, I mean managing player game time so they feel included. We also don’t have a plan for dealing with big teams. We don’t predict their style and counter it. We also don’t think about our squad. Ozil is good for half a season, we should have worked that out by now. Santi Cazorla was always going to get injured, we should have worked that out. Coquelin is no where near the level we need for that position in our system, why hasn’t Wenger solved for that? Why do Arsenal have a keeper who hoofs the ball? Only 20 out of his 43 passes found a man, that is unforgivable. How can a team built for style be out passed by over 200? The top 7 passers yesterday were City players! Coquelin only made 15 passes out 26 attempts. Absolute poverty.

No planning. This is the upshot. Bland on toast and a fight with Spurs for 4th. Very depressing. Pray to god Wenger hasn’t signed another deal because he needs to leave and let the club give a shot to a modern visionary who can reinvent the club, turf out the mercenary dross we’ve accumulated and bring back some pride.

297 Responses to “Arsene Pays For Negligent Squad Management”

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  1. Cesc Appeal

    Really physical game that, Barkley was lucky to stay on the field.

    Everton started the way they finished against Arsenal, but Liverpool took control half way through the first half and then absolutely dominated the second half.

    I still don’t consider Liverpool serious title contenders, but that was an impressive display in the second half.

    Mane always seems to get to balls, balls he has no business getting and looks second best to get, seems to nip in, great acceleration on him.

  2. raptora

    Mane is as good as Walcott at scoring goals but multiple times better with the ball in his feet. Could have been a great improvement on the right flank for us.

  3. Cesc Appeal


    Really impressed with Mane, when Liverpool shelled out what they did for him, must say, I thought it was a bit excessive, but in a Klopp system he works brilliantly, and in this market, price does not look too bad right now.

  4. Samesong


    No way that would kill Iwobi. Wenger apparently has watched him loads of times since his st etienne days he isn’t signing payet.

  5. Wenker-wanger

    The whole footballing world hardly raises an eyebrow when the announcement is made on Wenger’s next 2 year contract. Well he is a legend they say and he isn’t doing a bad job getting into champions league every season. The WOB S are seenas whingers or supporters that are never satisfied.
    The reality is that Wenger has vastlyunder-performed as a manager of a club with vast resources. The expectation of WOBs is to challenge for the premier league trophy and not finish 10 or more points behind the eventual winners.
    The title is beginning to slip out of our reach, the players are not quite good enough, the spirit is totally missing and the manager cannot motivate, create workable tactics and utilise the squad effectively.A good manager would make a decent challenge with this squad, this incompetent fraud will probably stumble to 4th place, pocketing 16 million for the next 2 seasons.

  6. Wenker-wanger

    Wenger will sign as he has nothing else in his life…. Quite ironic really in the fact that he needs arsenal more than arsenal need him and that we are indirectly paying his vast wages to screw up what we love.

  7. R.S.P.C.Arsenal

    He can do no more for the club .

    He can only destroy even further what we are.

    The stadium is soulless
    The team is gutless
    The board are spineless
    An Wenger is gormless

    An Arsenal FC is just less …..
    With him

  8. R.S.P.C.Arsenal

    Wallace an co must surely be thinking the reign is coming to an end ….
    Hand on heart do you really believe that Wenger should or can do a good job managing us for another 2 years ?

    He had wasted 100m this window ,

    In an effort to show he still has it …..

  9. ARgooner

    Frick..socks and underpants(white) for christmas again….could have been worse like 730 runs or the post as number one defender….

  10. reality check


    My bad. But yeah look at him. Does he look like a Legend about to finally say goodbye?When he leaves, AFC are going to throw the biggest song and dance about his Legacy. Fireworks, Interviews, lifetime achievement awards the works!

    Mini documentary about his life outside of football which will play on everybodys heart strings which will then make us all think hes such a respectful man. With class. Some may even shed a tear.

    This is Arsene Wenger we’re talking about not Tony Pulis.

  11. Redtruth

    Stringing the fans along is a very successful formula for both Wenger and the board.
    Nothing will appease me.
    I will continue to pour scorn on our hollow victorious until Wenger leaves.

  12. Wallace

    R S P C Arsenal

    “He had wasted 100m this window ,”

    no he hasn’t. we had an excellent summer window. two starters – Mustafi & Xhaka – and two excellent squad players – Holding & Lucas – and all for 5m less than Utd paid for Pogba.

  13. tunnygriffboy

    First post since Sunday. Thoroughly dejected, avoided anything football relatedand it spoils my Christmas.

    First half ok. Got the goal, kept a good shape, dangerous on the counter. Nearly got the second but offside (ridiculous officiating on offsides throughout match). Last 10 minutes though we sat back inviting them to score.

    Got to half time one nil up. Good. Thought second half, play alittle higher keep it tight. However lack of concentration and they get an offside goal. Very similar to our disallowed goal in first half.

    What really dis appointed me was that there was no reaction from anywhere. It became attack v defence for 30 minutes and it was inevitable they would score. He made reactive subs again when the team desperately needed fresh legs earlier. Too late then

    Some of our players are knackered, on their last legs. Alexis and Ozil and will Xhaka ever have played 6 games of this intensity over such a short space of time.
    Don’t understand why Iwobi started ahead of Ox (another injury)? Why isn’t Lucas getting game time when players are knackered.

    Anyway going forward. We can’t afford to lose more than one possibly two for the rest of the season. We have to go on a really good run again. Desperately need Mustafi back. Still goi g to be twists and turns but we’ve left ourselves hell of a lot to do.

    Totally fed up.

  14. OleGunner

    The most sickening thing about the City loss was it had shades of the Arsenal collapse at Old Trafford last season, wherein we meekly surrendered to a reserve Man Utd team.

    That still remains one of the worst Arsenal performances I’ve ever seen and the second half loss to City is nearly up there with that.

    I predict we’ll see a couple more abject performances like those at Anfield and Stamford Bridge later this season.

  15. Wallace

    “Already any serious Arsenal title challenge looks to have faded. In each of the past three seasons opponents energised by some spurting, sparking piece of managerial chemistry have sprinted away around this time of year while Arsenal have still been making plans. Wenger was genuinely upset at the end of Sunday’s defeat, an encouraging sign in itself. At the very least Arsenal’s season might benefit from a little more in the way of tension between a sympathetic manager and a star player who, in every sense, too often seems to leave no shadow.”

  16. tunnygriffboy


    Agree our summer was good.

    Mustafi got injured at exactly the wrong time

    Xhaka is being asked to play games of an intensity and expectation every 3 days something he will never have done before. I like him but he’s knackered.

    Why isn’t Lucas getting more game time.

    Iwobi hasn’t played well for a while. Why didn’t Ox start instead of him ? Any news on his injury.

    From being in a good position 2 games ago we are now 9 points behind the leaders and man u having been 10 points behind us are now only 4 behind us.

    We have to shape up. We need to freshen things up. We are capable of going on another run and there will be twists and turns. We desperately need Mustafi back. A leader.

    Any news on Welbeck and Ramsey ?

    I fell pretty fed up atm I need the team to up their game, show some gumption and get back to playing well. Pedro is right. We haven’t rotated, we’ve had a tough schedule and our players are heavy legged and exhausted.

  17. Batistuta

    You can bet your houses we’re about to proceed on another unbeaten run against poor teams while the teams above play each other and drop points and all of a sudden we’re 2maybe 3pts behind the leaders and all of a sudden it’s all about a title challenge until maybe February and we drop out of competitions like flies and then we’re in may and everyone says he’ll fix of in the transfer window and on and on and on the cycle continues, as predictable as the sun rising in the morning.

  18. Wallace


    yeah, it’s been a shit week. two very similar defeats. a lot of the optimism i was feeling has hoofed it. hoping Alexis can drag us back into the thick of it again in the way Henry used to, but questions to be asked elsewhere. Ospina, Holding, Gibbs, Lucas….wouldn’t be surprised to see at least a couple of them start vs WBA.

  19. Wenker-wanger

    Talk of players playing too many games? … Isnt it the same for city?…. Mustafi is a fair defender and perez maybe a real poacher in the box but we still dont know, and xhaka is not a dynamic midfielder. There are better players available at a higher cost but would give significantly more return. Wenger has budgeted not to win the league but to maintain 4th or above.
    However a good manager would make these new signings count. Instead he either drives them nonstop into the red zone or fails to give them a run in the team , eventually destroying their confidence. Nothing he does makes you think , wow that was a clever strategy or smart bit of judgement. Its just standard or below par management.

  20. Thanos

    Pedro this is your best post ever the truth has to be told the fans I sit next to alas are sheep of the highest order. They think we would be mad to get rid as “look what’s happened to utd ” I say look what’s happening the Chelsea an Liverpool WENGER OUT

  21. vicky

    Yes, agree with Red. 90M doesn’t look like money well spent. Wenger for some reason does not give Perez a chance. Whatever you may say about his overall game, the guy knows how to score goals. Against Everton and City Alexis was having to drop deep, with Perez playing up top you would think he would have an outlet. Xhaka has been immensely underwhelming. Holding was a good buy but clueless Wenger prefers Gabriel to him. Mustafi is the only signing who gets game time and is a quality player. Others either not good enough or underutilized.

  22. Cesc Appeal


    I do not want to lose Sanchez for anything, if Ozil is a Wenger sort of player, in that his entire approach to the game mirrors Wenger, Sanchez is the antithesis of that.

    Really could not give a fig if we lose Ozil.

    But, big but, we would need to change the structure of our team if we lost Ozil, I still believe in Xhaka, I just think the way we’re set up is not helping him, new league as well etc, but if Ozil was sold I would look to shift Ramsey and/or Wilshere as well and bring in a couple of CM’s, one who is an all energy type, one who is more attacking, driving/dribbling kind, then yeah, a player like Reus (Mkhitaryan was a huge miss) to bring the creativity from the flank.

    Only problem with Reus is he is Arsenal levels of injury prone.

    In all seriousness, at this point in time, Ozil is not worth £250 000 a week to us, locked in for five years. Would be nice if someone at the club, obviously not going to be Wenger, turned round and said, earn it then to him.

    Of course, all those decisions are best made by a new manager, fingers crossed. But then I saw a Mirror poll last night that had 66% of Arsenal fans wanting Wenger to extend, which either means Arsenal fans are gutless, and just want this continue, or Arsenal fans genuinely thing twelve years of identical failure are down to luck or conspiracy.

    So, are they gutless or stupid?

  23. Wallace

    “December 26th – West Brom (H)

    January 1st – Crystal Palace (H)

    January 3rd – Bournemouth (A)

    January 14th – Swansea (A)

    January 22nd – Burnley (H)

    January 31st – Watford (H)

    If one of the accusations levelled at us is that we’re flat track bullies, I don’t think you could ask for a flatter track in terms of a run of Premier League games. Of course each team provides its own test, and I’m not saying they’re going to be easy opposition or anything like that, but it’s definitely a chance to take 18 points, and as we’ve seen this week things can change quite quickly in this league.

    During that period, Chelsea have to face Sp*rs, Leicester and Liverpool (among others), so they have some difficult games ahead. If they keep on winning then there’s not much we can do about that, but hopefully they’ll drop some points along the way and things will tighten up at the top.”

    – arseblog

  24. gonsterous

    getting payet in is a no brainer. he would be cheap, he is in a team thats facing relegation and he can play the CAM or LM role. and he would cost half as much as draxler (i bring this up cause wenger loves saving the club’s money)
    I think we would really compete for the league unlike this half arsed attempt at the moment !!!

  25. Cesc Appeal

    I take exception to this whole official bashing after the weekend as well, you cannot call either of those goals bad calls, you might say they were wrong (do not think the second goal was offside) but they were not bad calls.

    Sane was a pubic hair offside, I mean, a millimetre or something, a toe nail clipping, hardly end times the official missed that we all picked up after the fourth replay.

    The second, still divides opinion amongst experts now, some say Silva’s wavy leg is interfering, some say not.

    They were not ‘bad calls,’ in the sense they were terrible decisions.

    Arsenal lost because Arsenal played in an important game the way we have so often over the past twelve years, just this season, Chelsea great, Liverpool s**t, Spurs s**t, United s**t, City s**t.

  26. Cesc Appeal


    But in all seriousness, if Chelsea do drop points, and City, whatever, and we get into a position where results suddenly count, do you count on Arsenal?

    Seriously, after twelve years, after numerous changes of personnel and the same failings being present, honestly now, would you count on Arsenal to deliver when it matters, not fourth place matters, highest level matters?

    Because that is the question, opening the door or having the door opened in one thing, entering is another.

  27. Wallace

    Cesc Appeal

    ” you cannot call either of those goals bad calls, you might say they were wrong (do not think the second goal was offside) but they were not bad calls.”

    firstly, I agree, take the rough with the smooth, evens itself out over a season blah blah…but surely a ‘wrong call’ can’t be anything other than a ‘bad call’?

  28. Wallace

    Cesc Appeal

    “But in all seriousness, if Chelsea do drop points, and City, whatever, and we get into a position where results suddenly count, do you count on Arsenal?”

    right now, probably not. but stranger things have happened. i’d like to think it would be seen as less of a surprise than Leicester winning the league.

  29. Cesc Appeal


    I suppose you could say that, but ‘bad’ for me has an element of stupidity, or glaring error or something like that, buying into a dive is a bad call when the contact was obviously minimal, missing a blatant handball is a bad call, bottling a penalty decision is a bad call.

    These may have been wrong, again, personally I only think one was wrong, but they were not bad. Providing an answer to a question that is well thought out by ultimate wrong is just that, wrong, providing an ill conceived attempt to answer without any effort is bad.

    I mean, its not a big deal really, but I just don’t like the referee conspiracy theory, Arsenal have benefited from some questionable decisions this year, I guess that is why I don’t like ‘bad,’ the connotations of it.

  30. OleGunner


    Of course Chelsea will drop points along with City and Liverpool.
    However, I can’t see this meek Arsenal side taking advantage of any other teams losses in the grand scheme of things.

    A game in February against Chelsea to go top for example, I wouldn’t bank on us to seize the initiative. This team is mentally inept.

  31. Cesc Appeal


    I mean, what is bizarre is, of course Leicester’s rise last year was out of nowhere and by January I was still saying they would fade, to be fair to Vicky, always said they would do it and questioned my questioning, but once they were still there by February, March time, you started to really believe they were, Kante, Mahrez, Vardy, Morgan etc, you just started to believe in them.

    In all honesty, I do not have that feeling about Arsenal, I think we’re fundamentally flawed from the training pitch, to the changing rooms to the field, no surprise to hear me say I think the manager just corrupts the team, not in a malicious way, but in his weak attitude and his laid back approach to football, or rather his playercentric, expressive style of football which seems a bit out of place in modern football now.

  32. Leedsgunner

    “Arsene pays for Negligent Squad management”.

    I disagree with this.

    How exactly?

    He still gets paid an obscene amount of money to make the same mistakes every year, recycle old excuses and pander to his yes men…

    “Be careful what you wish for.” We are constantly told.

    I can tell you this. When we agreed to move to the Emirates we were promised trophies and titles. Real trophies and real titles… not just pretend ones that Wenger and his supporters make up to make themselves feel better.

    I didn’t wish for this. To watch our bitterest rivals win the EPL and the Champion’s League while Wenger does nothing except to put out the same team, play the same tactic, and make the same subs.

    The only people that pay for Arsene’s mistakes is definitely not him.

    It’s us. The fans.

    Wenger and the club doesn’t care about us, that’s clear from this week — if nothing else.

  33. Leedsgunner

    Wenger can complain about all the referee decisions he want but the truth is he’s been beneficiary of some dubious decisions as well. Everything evens out in the course of the season.

    Don’t complain about referees — but play in such a way that the result is unquestionable and undeniable.

    To moan about referees after a bad loss is just looking for a way not to take responsibility. In this we come to the heart of the problem… no body at the club is willing to take responsibility. You know what?

    Real change is never going to happen at Arsenal Football Club if people at the top always look for excuses rather than look at what is truly going on.

    If you want to fix the problem you have to admit there’s a problem.

  34. Wallace

    Cesc Appeal

    “In all honesty, I do not have that feeling about Arsenal,”

    a few times this season I’ve felt it a little bit. the period around the Chelsea game, and the way we started December. not so much that everything was coming together, but we were looking pretty solid at the back, and had started scoring at a rate of knots again. our successful seasons there was usually a game you could pinpoint that was the catalyst for what followed. usually some time between now and February, a six-pointer where we really turned up. if that were to happen this season, Chelsea away for example, it could change the whole mood & dynamic within the squad. big if.

  35. tunnygriffboy


    I agree that the Sane off side was a difficult one to call. It was not to different for the one he flagged against us in the first half. Both could have gone either way. The frustration is both went against us (cue tin foil hatters and conspiracy theorists)

    What was more frustrating was the lack of response from us. It was obvious a good few of our boys were running on fumes but once again we had to wait for the substitutions. He had the option of Ox, Elneny, Lucas and Giroud to bring on as attacking options all of which were fresh not having been flogged. They could and should have been utilised far earlier than they were.

    I hope there are a few changes v West Brom.

  36. Majestic gooner

    If rumours are true that wenger has signed a new contract that will just confirm that he is as selfish as they come and he is only in it for the money, because surely he knows himself that he does not have what it takes to win a major trophy again. Compared to all other top clubs in the prem is like having a 68 year old dad attending your school parents meeting , whilst every other kid has younger , full of life parents. Deep down you don’t want them to even turn up.

  37. loyika


    Those decisions were bad (especially the Pen at Everton) Lets call a spade a spade. We have gained from some bad decisions as well; The Handball goal against Burnley, also the last goal by Sanchez against West Ham, At the end of the day, those things even themselves out.

    For example was Monreal off side for Iwobi’s disallowed goal at Citeh? Anyways like Wallace said, we take it on the chin as we will get lucky decisions go our way as the season progresses (i hope we won’t now come back and say Arsenal were lucky to win so and so game when that happens1!?)

    Like i said; there will still be twists and turns as i don’t believe any team (especially Chelscum) are that good and will run away with the league, but the point as you clearly alluded to is; WILL ARSENAL STEP UP WHEN THE CHANCE PRESENTS ITSELF AGAIN!? For now that answer is a “Big Fucking No!”

    This team clearly lacks a winning mentality, i thought things had changed and we were more matured in our approach to the game, guess not (a clear case is the Cech / Ozil fuck up of a free kick in ET? Clearly shws some players are not that passionate about things, as in it’s not as if we would have scored , but at least make an effort ffs)

    Looking at the fixtures, we now have a clear run of winnable games and despite folks bringing out the “Flat Track Bully” record, we have to remember the league is over 38 games and we play 19 other teams, so you can’t now slam us for winning every other game that comes our way?

    Arsene signing a 2 year deal is just typical and you can’t really blame the Arsenal Fan base for being neutral or passive over it;

    1. There is really nothing they can do if the board and SK want him to stay.
    2. Arsene has been here 20 years + (for some thats a life time and it’s not just let go, as people in countries that have leaders that have been in government for that long if it’s easy? You think if the system allowed Bill Clinton, GWB or Obama would have not won a 3rd term in office? Even if you ask the average Zimbabwean, they are shyte scared of how life would be when the old geezer that is Mugabe is gone. Even at that i believe his dead body might still be given 1 year to rule in a transitional government)

    I keep saying, when push comes to shove, the fan base will tilt towards maintaining the status quo, it’s easier to deal with throwing all your frustrations on Arsene as; The board and SK are happy that he is ready to be their “Teflon Don”, The so called WOBs have their “Pantomime Villain” each season to vent their frustrations on. The so called AKBs are scared of change and will always live in hope that AW might stumble on one last EPL title or UCL trophy before he goes and so on.

    Face it, Arsene Wenger has all the power and is holding Arsenal FC and the British Media and FA by the balls (You don’t get to stay 20 years plus on the job if your stupid) We like to paint him as some “Stupid Buffoon” but he is quite smarter than we give him credit for because he has played his poker face and won each time (in terms of staying on as long as he has)

    As they say; “The minority might have their say, but ultimately the majority will have their way” regardless about how the Minority or anyone else sees the whole scene.

    Boxing days fixtures couldn’t come fast enough>

  38. Wallace

    I genuinely believe our squad’s as good as anyone’s this season. put Guardiola, Klopp or Conte in charge of it and they’d be favourites to win it.

  39. loyika

    (for some thats a life time and it’s not just let go, as people in countries that have leaders that have been in government for that long if it’s easy?)

    Sorry that was meant to read;

    “for some thats a life time and it’s not that easy to just let go, ask people in countries that have leaders that have been in government for that long if it’s easy?”

  40. Leedsgunner


    “I genuinely believe our squad’s as good as anyone’s this season. put Guardiola, Klopp or Conte in charge of it and they’d be favourites to win it.”

    If you truly believe this — even by your logic what does that tell you about Wenger?

    Don’t misunderstand me, I’m not trying to call you out or pick a fight. That tells me Wenger is past it.

    I believe we have a good squad too, but it’s clear thar when it comes playing big teams Wenger doesn’t have the nous to win over them consistently and regularly.

    Wenger’s done.

  41. Wenker-wanger

    Let’s all face it, Wenger will retire just after he draws his last breath.
    Will he haunt us beyond that?
    It’s so easy to slip into morbid cynicism!

  42. OleGunner

    “I genuinely believe our squad’s as good as anyone’s this season. put Guardiola, Klopp or Conte in charge of it and they’d be favourites to win it.”

    The hell does that tell you about Wenger then?
    It’s literally staring you in the face.


    Your argument falls apart when you say those who are part of the “WOB” (God I hate that phrase) just want someone to vent at in Wenger.

    That’s absurd, they want the man gone, not to go through the insane repeat shenanigans year after year and have a pariah to vent at.
    Why would I be happy with a 13th year of no title win but all is good because Wenger is there to moan about?

    Crazy thought on your end, some of us just want to bloody win.

  43. Wallace

    Cesc Appeal

    “Do you want Wenger to sign an extension at the end of this season?”

    no, if we don’t win it this season I’d like to see someone else get a shot at it. although worried the uncertainty over it might cost us Alexis.

  44. Cesc Appeal


    I don’t think many of us who want Wenger gone paint him as a ‘buffoon,’ in fact many times I’ve called him conniving and things of that nature which is a type of smarts, I’ve stated he has successfully lowered the bar of expectations and managed to convince thousands and thousands of Arsenal fans that trophies etc are not the barometer of success , but rather balance sheets and doing things the ‘Arsenal way.’

    Wenger is a good manager, in the things he’s good at, but he is not a great manager, he is not well rounded enough and still lives in the late 90’s early 00’s in management style. I dislike that he’s used the sentimentality he has accrued as currency to stay, with numbers of those supporting him slowly ebbing away year on year like fuel in the tank being depleted.

    Both Wenger and Kroenke are the problem, but whilst one stays the other stays, Wenger is the closet to the edge, he’s in charge of everything football at Arsenal and is the face of the club, he is also six months away from leaving, that is why it is Wenger the fans must pressure.

    Kroenke likes Wenger because he provides stability and consistent revenue, which is all businessmen wants, Wenger likes Kroenke because he’s hands off and allows him to control everything at Arsenal to do with football with no targets or intervention, which is actually what an egotistical control freak wants.

    Each props the other one up, Kroenke solidifies Wenger’s position, and Wenger shields Kroenke from critique acting as both a lightning rod for critique and also as an emotional tool of blackmail to stop some from criticising the club at all.

    It is a horrible thing they have going on at Arsenal, why I was surprised Henry was not kept, or Bergkamp brought in, more emotional blackmail.

    Basically, fans have to decide, do you want what is in the interests of your club, or Wenger and Kroenke?

    You cannot talk about one without the other with those two.

  45. Cesc Appeal


    What do you think should be done then with Sanchez, do you think he needs to be told what is happening next year, I agree, no way a player of Sanchez’s calibre with Munich, PSG, Juventus, City etc all after him commits himself when he has no idea what next season at Arsenal looks like.

    I am of the mind though, if Wenger stays he goes, I don’t know why, I just have a feeling, he looked dejected crouched down at City and I think he feels this is as far as Arsenal go.

  46. loyika


    I feel you on that. Personally i love the guy for all he has done, but like Wallace i feel if we can’t win the league with this squad (which i also believe is as good as any in the league) then it’s time for him to go (even if we do win the league, i would still be on the side of him handing over to someone else)

    @ Ole G

    Was just making a relative point, not stating that that’s all the Wenger Outs want. I also believe the numbers are not even there among the “WOBs” to push something drastic as Arsenal never do too bad to tilt the whole thing in their favour. Many fans are fickle depending on results (i might include myself in hat group) They basically hope with all hope that the team and manager will eventually cme good

  47. tunnygriffboy


    Crikey your last post is probably the most frustrated post I’ve seen you make.

    Our squad is good enough to get close to the title. It may still do but we’ll have to go on a run similar to Chelsea current one to get there

    Another frustration for me is that he has under utilised players. Alexis and Ozil look knackered and Xhaka won’t have played the sort of run of games he’s had before in his career.

    Not only have players not been rotated but you can rest players on the hour mark by making substitutions in games. Also it was clear we needed fresh legs on Sunday. Why weren’t subs brought on earlier.

    Gibbs needs to come in for Monreal for a run of games. Elneny needs game timeand with Ox now injured Lucas should get a run even if it’s wide. Possibly a fresh Giroud could start a few games. Options are there.

    Wtf has Ramsey gone ? How serious is yet another Ox injury and when is Welbeck back ?

  48. WengerEagle


    ‘I am of the mind though, if Wenger stays he goes, I don’t know why, I just have a feeling, he looked dejected crouched down at City and I think he feels this is as far as Arsenal go.’

    You underestimate his stubbornness and obsession to prove the footballing world wrong, Cesc my lad.


  49. karim

    Philippe Auclair says he spoke with the man half an hour after the final whistle and, apparently, Wenger was still furious at the lack of agressivity of the players in the second half.

    For what’s it’s worth….

  50. Bamford10


    Alexis is fantastic, and I recognize his importance, but I’m at a point now where I think we need a complete rebuild (save the back four and goalkeepers).

    As good as Alexis is, he is neither a genuine CF nor a genuine wide player. And he is worth gobs of money. Unless I saw a way to play him as a second central striker, I’d be open to selling him.

    I’d sell Ozil in a heartbeat. That goes without saying.

    Players I’d be looking at for a rebuild (feasible or otherwise) include:

    Marco Verratti
    Daniel Sturridge
    Marco Reus
    Riyad Mahrez
    Cesc Fabregas
    Dmitri Payet
    Andre Silva
    Renato Sanches
    Julian Weigel
    Joshua Kimmich
    Edinson Cavani

    Give me a moment and I’ll propose a 4-4-2 diamond solution that allows us to keep Alexis. 😉

  51. Wenker-wanger

    Wenger is useless.,most of us know that. But he is somewhat untouchable and ex pro players only touch on slight criticisms. The majority of fans are still quite undecided about Wenger for various reasons of resistance to risky change or sentimentality. Whilst we win some lose some but make 4th and take the odd lucky fa cup trophy, the general fan base is content. Additionally the” beating spurs effect” also has a massive bearing on fans opinion of Wenger.
    Arsenal are a club satisfied with their own partial “success”… a bit like the wife that gets taken out once a month and neglected for the rest of the time. Boring predictable unexciting existence!

  52. Bamford10


    No, I’m with Cesc. I think he will go. Recall that he said that whether he would be at Arsenal next season depends on how this season goes. As long as this season is difficult or disappointing enough, I think he goes. He needs to be encouraged to head for the exit, of course.

  53. WengerEagle

    Some interesting names there Bamford, the most eye-catching being Cesc.

    Do you think that at 30 [age in summer 2017] he’s still a top level player? And what role would he play in the team?

    Cavani and Payet will both be 30 as well so they’re not exactly players for the future.

    Love Kimmich and Weigl, haven’t seen enough of Andre Silva but like what I hear about him.

    Disagree with people’s assertions on Renato Sanches, he hasn’t done enough for me as of now.

    I believe that Sturridge isn’t the same player physically, he hasn’t got that burst of acceleration and couple of yards that he had in 2013/14 which is likely down to injuries, world class finisher but doesn’t do enough outside of the box any more for me.

    Verratti, Reus both world class names that speak for themselves, injuries again a concern for Reus mind.

    Mahrez I would happily take, hasn’t hit the heights of last season but the quality remains.

  54. Wallace


    “Philippe Auclair says he spoke with the man half an hour after the final whistle and, apparently, Wenger was still furious at the lack of agressivity of the players in the second half.”

    apart from Ozil who else lacked spirit(have watched the highlights, but can’t bring myself to watch the whole of the 2nd half)? not surprised when attacking midfielders go missing a bit, but would consider all of our defense & central midfield fighters.

  55. karim

    Bakayoko and Silva from Monaco would be great too.

    But I do think Sanchez is to be kept at all cost for what he brings on the pitch and his warrior attitude.


    I will, and I’ll probably be stoned too.

  56. Samesong


    Someone said that Iwobi was better at defending than Walcott the other day. Neither can defend to be honest.

  57. Cesc Appeal

    ‘Cesc is still class. can still spray those through balls.’

    Thanks Samesong, I try to put a pair of boots on whenever I can.


    That comment was about Sanchez crouched over, not sure if you thought I meant Wenger?

    Sanchez wants to prove nature wrong, not football.


    With you on the rebuild, but for me it is the central midfield, as it has been for a few years now. I still like Xhaka, I still think he can bring something to us with the right manager in the right system, but I can admit he has struggled so far.

    But for me, the other midfield options are not good enough, Caz I sort of caveat that claim, technically he is better than Ozil in my opinion, a better pure footballer, but physically, I just do not like him in there with regards to strength, speed, presence, stamina and industry.

  58. Wallace

    Cesc Appeal

    I’d imagine Alexis & Ozil, maybe even all the players, will be kept in the loop re plans for next season.

  59. karim


    It was terrible, mate.
    I was sort of arguing with Ankit at half-time regarding the quality of our first half, which was decent imo while ” we were shit ” in his.

    But as soon as they scored ( one minute or so after k.o. ), the whole team vanished, it was an attack/defense training session and our defense was very shaky to say the least…

    Terribly disappointing Wallace.

  60. Bamford10

    OK, so if you want to keep Alexis, I think we should shift to a 4-4-2 diamond and play him up top with a partner. However the midfield must be improved massively, and we must bring in better players to partner with Alexis.

    One scenario: sell Ozil (& others), sign Verratti, Sanches or Weigl, Payet, Sturridge, and Andre Silva (as back-up).

    Set up as follows:


    Or some variation thereof.

    Those who love Ozil might even keep him and play him where I have Payet. Like so:


    I don’t know. But we need a rebuild, and Wenger absolutely must go.

  61. Cesc Appeal


    We saw what happened to City last year when it was announced Pellegrini was gone, City collapsed, that is why I have to say I think this whole situation is rather irresponsible, for me a manager should be replaced suddenly, one year before his contract expires, that way you do not get this situation.

    Fergie, again, perfect manager, bolt out of the blue with his retirement having won the league.

    This is now going to be messy, all eyes are on Wenger, a decision has to be made, uncertainty will build as the months tick by and you’ve a fan base so polarised half will sigh with relief is he signs and half will be ready to tear down the Emirates.

  62. Wallace


    “But as soon as they scored ( one minute or so after k.o. ), the whole team vanished, it was an attack/defense training session and our defense was very shaky to say the least…”

    yeah, I’ve learnt to dread the text alert that comes in the early moments of the 2nd half in big games.

  63. Dissenter

    Wenger eagle,
    “Iwobi has been poor for ages now after a bright start to the season”

    What else do you expect from a 20 year old.
    He’s still further ahead of Oxlade who’s four years older.
    No 20 year old is going to give you consistency.

  64. karim


    True, they’re very good too.

    Fabinho was part of the Madrid 2nd team, can’t fathom how they didn’t see what a player he is.
    As for Lemar, he’s young, has just been capped for the first time and his left foot is doing wonders.

    To be fair, there are a lot of good deals to be struck in that squad.

  65. Dissenter

    “Payet is a better player than Ozil.”

    Not on the evidence of this year’s form.
    Neither of them are leaders though.

  66. karim


    Agree, he’s a proper talent. Great dribbling, most of his goals are very spectacular AND he fights on the pitch.
    What’s not to be liked there ?

  67. Dissenter

    I’m going to bet on Monaco beating City over two legs.

    My choice of manager to replace Wenger is Leonardo Jardim.
    It would never happen because he’s another one who openly mock Wenger and he’s an acolyte of Mourhino.

  68. WengerEagle


    There’s consistency and then there’s playing badly more than playing well.

    His performances fell off a cliff only a handful of weeks into the season, I agree he needs time to mature and develop but that’s also the problem that we have, we’re supposed to be fighting for a title, we can’t afford to spend a couple of months trying to play people into form as we are doing now with Iwobi.

    Obviously the issue is who replaces him, Oxlade isn’t any better and Perez and Walcott are too alike to start together in terms of balance to the front 3.

  69. Cesc Appeal

    Should we amend the Ozil song, instead of the ‘who’ they shout after ‘we’ve got Ozil,’ should we change that to ‘sometimes.’

  70. WengerEagle


    West Ham are struggling in spite of Payet’s performances, were it not for him they would still be kicking it in the bottom 3.

    He’s creating more chances than anyone else in the league including Ozil, and it’s not even close.

  71. karim


    I think I will too.
    I know things can change in the space of 2 months, but today I’d have them as favourites and Guardiola agrees by the way, I think he’s quite impressed.

    Apart from their 4/0 loss at Nice ( after 5 games in 13 days ), and this week-end’s surprise home defeat v Lyon, they’ve been absolutely fantastic.

    Plus they showed in the recent past that they like English teams…

  72. Dissenter

    Iwobi should still be a peripheral player who’s scheduled for a midseason loan to get games.
    We should learn from the Victor Moses experience.

  73. WengerEagle

    ‘I’m going to bet on Monaco beating City over two legs.’

    As strong an underdog bet as you’re likely to get.

    Monaco are no joke, I’d rather face PSG this season.

  74. Dissenter

    It’s obvious to most that Ozil is irreplaceable.
    He came to Arsenal with a reputation and he has lived up to all the negative and positive aspects of that reputation.

    No other big club will let Ozil strut around like Wenger does.
    Really took many players have free-roles (free-of-responsibility) passes from Wenger.

  75. WengerEagle


    Absolutely, unfair for him to be launched in head first to the deep end.

    Sanchez has been unbelievable this season, best player in the league along with Hazard.

    But what should concern everyone is that, in both of his season’s since he has joined us, he’s hit a rough spell that lasts for a couple of months.

    With the way he’s been playing, we would be completely shagged were his form to desert him, as it stands we are 9 points behind with him playing out of his skin.

  76. Micheal

    All this talk about who we should sign is pointless. It is re-arranging the deckchairs on the Titanic.

    Look at all the players we have signed in say, the last 10 years. And then consider what progress what we have made. Then remind yourselves how we fell apart – again – last week at Everton and repeated the fiasco a few days later in Manchester. What have we learned ?

    It is not about the playing squad. It’s about the management.

  77. Batistuta

    All that wishful thinking of who we add to the team is absolutely pointless and stale as long as we’ve got the same manager in charge.

  78. Cesc Appeal

    ‘All this talk about who we should sign is pointless. It is re-arranging the deckchairs on the Titanic.’

    Nice ship though 😉

  79. DogsBollocks

    Why would the owners and board want to change managers when their investment is doing so well.
    It could turn out like United when SAF retired

  80. Bamford10


    Because their investment could and should be doing much better. And because it’s clear that Wenger is through at the highest level. And because anyone with any self-respect should not tolerate being a second-rate, also-ran this long.

  81. R.S.P.C.Arsenal

    At nigh on 20m Perez should not be a squad player …
    Mustafi , jury still ou .. ok player not that sort of sum player tho ,
    Granit x …. man of all the choice of midfielders in the world an he choose him for 35 plus wages makes it an 80m five year deal

    Pure waste…

    Spin that sir

  82. useroz

    I cut/pasted the following from ANR – with the supposed firepower how could Wenger let this happen??

    Keepers facing Arsenal have so little to do
    20th December 2016 – by Myles Palmer
    From Dom : 

    The stats so far

    Another day out in Manchester and another rubbish game of football.

    An all too familiar tale. Can someone tell me how you play 90 minutes against the worst goalkeeper in the Premier League, and let him have no saves or catches to make, and how he is not put under pressure even once??

    We know Wenger is a statistician, and focuses on possession, but the real stats that tell the story of the season so far are as follows:-

    In the following 6 games the number of saves the opposition goalkeeper has made are :-

    V Southampton 0 saves

    V Burnley 2 saves

    V Spurs 2 saves

    V Man Utd 0 saves

    V Everton 0 saves

    V Man City 0 saves

    In those 6 games we have scored 7 goals and won 8 points.

    Consider that the Southampton win was a penalty awarded in the last minute, and was a generous penalty. Consider that the Burnley win was a last-minute goal that was handball. Consider that we didn’t score against Boro. Consider that we didn’t score against Leicester.

    With stats like that it will be difficult coming anywhere close this season.

    A shame, given this is the best squad by a mile that we have had in 10 years.

    As always I hope I’m wrong, but the strength in depth we have this term offers no hiding place for poor managerial skills.

    Myles says:

    This manager does not do defensive organisation and can’t think on his feet.

    He just thinks: possession is the best defence.

    He’s far too timid with his substitutions and too soft with the players

  83. Cesc Appeal

    That’s the thing as well, how much longer are Arsenal going to be doing ‘about right,’ Liverpool have Klopp now, just expanded their stadium, not convinced by them as title contenders but they are growing as a club, Spurs are making strides under Pochettino, about to move into a new stadium with a much larger capacity, are starting to feel their way into the big-boy commercial world as well.

    How attractive are Arsenal in the world of commercials going forward, which is what Kroenke seems to care about? Their biggest asset seems to be their enormous fan base and social media footprint, so perhaps a bit more respect for the fan base that seems one of their most valuable assets is in order.

    Not sure if you’re a top level brand you would offer top level deals to Arsenal to be associated with fourth is a trophy and restrictive prudence.

    If we want those mega kit deals, and sponsorship deals we need to be doing mega things in football, or at least attempting to.

    I cannot even say Arsenal play nice looking or exciting football these days, in flashes sure, but mainly it is a lethargic looking sort of product.

  84. gambon


    Since Fergie retired, Man Utds revenues have gone through the roof.

    Their commercial revenue has gone from £100m to £270m, in the same period ours increased by £40m.

    Arsene is not a good investment at all.

    There are gaps in the stadium, the fanbase is so apathetic that we dont sell anywhere near enough merchanidse, and sponsors dont want to be involved with a team that is obsessed with mediocrity and bottling trophies.

  85. Jeff

    Is there not a trophy for number of consecutive top fours? If not, I think it should be created. Something like a lifetime achievement award. I think Wenger feels unappreciated and that’s why he won’t leave. If we given him something like that he might use it as an excuse and boast he’s the only one to get such an award.

    What about 50,000 substitutions award? That’s got to be worth something?

    Also, if he’s trying to catch up to Ferguson’s record number of years at Man U, the comparison isn’t the same. Ferguson actually won things, lots and lots of them – that’s why he was able to stay so long. Our Arsene just stays.

  86. gambon

    Totally agree with the above comments.

    There is no point us signing any players until we have a new manager.

    Wenger has shown time and time again, he doesnt have what it takes to win. The players change, and the flaws remain, year after year. There is only one common factor – Wenger and his antiquated set up.

    No new formations, no new tactics, no new rotation, no new coaches, nothing changes.

    You may as well swap Ozil, Iwobi, Walcott and Sanchez for Cesc, Nasri, Walcott and RVP – the only difference is we used to play the best football in the PL 5 years back.

  87. Bamford10


    “This manager does not do defensive organisation and can’t think on his feet. He just thinks: possession is the best defense.”

    Yes and no. One improvement in the last few years is the defensive organization of the back four and our defense of set pieces. These improvements could be down to Bould, but these things are definitely better.

    What Wenger does not do is team defensive organization, midfield defensive organization or organization of team pressing. This is obvious to anyone who has watched us for any period of time.

    I do think Wenger thinks possession is the best defense, and there is actually a little to this. After all, two defensive positives follow from possession and slow build-up play: one, when you have the ball, the other team does not; two, when you build slowly and keep the ball, the whole team moves up together and stays relatively compact.

    In itself, though, this is not enough.

    I have often asked myself, though, what accounts for Wenger’s consistency (top four, etc.) despite his obvious failings? I think it’s partly the above, namely, his insistence on possession and slow build-up play — swinging the ball side to side, side to side and back again — which allows his teams (despite all of their shortcomings) to keep the ball for long stretches, control possession, slow play down, stay compact and get results.

    The mistake he made, though, is that he has refused to add other elements to this approach and he refused to modernize in a handful of other ways.

    He has remained unwaveringly affixed to a particular approach, and that approach yields solid, predictable results. But it’s just not good enough when it comes to competing with the best teams today.

  88. Wallace


    “But it’s just not good enough when it comes to competing with the best teams today.”

    since Fergie retired the ‘best teams’ would be Chelsea & Man City. we dicked the former 3-0 about 8 weeks ago, and prior to Sunday our last 6 games against City featured 3 wins and 3 draws, so not entirely the case.

  89. gambon


    In 21 away games to the top 6 we havent won a single game. Drawn 7 and lost 14.

    No matter how much lying you do, no matter how much you try and talk around it, you cannot say we dont struggle against the best teams.

    Look at Wengers record in Europe.

  90. Wallace

    “I have often asked myself, though, what accounts for Wenger’s consistency (top four, etc.) despite his obvious failings?”

    bewildering, innit?

  91. Bamford10


    Jesus, that’s a pathetic response. Honestly. As I’ve said, the Chelsea team we beat 3-0 is not the Chelsea team currently lighting up the PL. Different formation, different spirit, different energy level, different everything. Anyone who watched that game and has watched Chelsea since knows this.

    Plus, just look at our results against the best teams in the PL and in Europe over the past ten years. Fucking pathetic.

    I can’t believe you’re still defending this moron. His failure is so obvious now; it simply boggles the mind he still has believers or defenders.

    Jesus Christ, mate; it’s over. It was over a long time ago.

  92. Bamford10


    “bewildering, innit?”

    No, I’ve partly explained it. That and the fact that he has always had a handful of quality players in his squad.

    More bewildering is his consistent record of FAILURE, his inability to correct or improve his approach — and the fact that people like you continue to defend him.

    For fuck’s sake, people: get a fucking clue.

  93. Wallace


    “In 21 away games to the top 6 we havent won a single game. Drawn 7 and lost 14. No matter how much lying you do, no matter how much you try and talk around it…”


    “Despite consistently finishing in the top four every season, the Gunners boast a miserable record away at the current top six sides in the Premier League.
    Sunday’s 2-1 loss at the Etihad means Arsene Wenger’s side have only won three of their last 22 away games – a record dating back to the beginning of the 2012-13 term.”

    – Daily M%*l

    still not great, but better than you’d have us believe.

  94. RJM

    Give Wenger Messi Suarez and Neymar he’d still fuck it up!
    Seemingly nothing that can be done. Fans aren’t prepared to oust Wenger so we have another 2 years of him wasting our money, continually failing to challenge for top honours while his puppet, our CEO, preaches progress.
    The only progress we see at Arsenal are the upward progressing salaries of the manager, board and players.
    Fucking con men. Fuck the lot of them!

  95. R.S.P.C.Arsenal


    Your support for him is commendable , your loyalty is blinding the bigger picture of how this man is single handily imploding the club.

    Sprinkle a few home wins against the big boys to turn it round that he ain’t that bad is confusing …

    Had it occurred to you that maybe Wenger wants to go ?
    He can see it’s shit the media is turning the screw on him…
    Maybe put him to sleep on the vets table with the board stroking his ego as he slips away ….
    It’s what he wants

  96. R.S.P.C.Arsenal

    Someone posted yesterday that it’s all old fellas at the stadium ,
    Had a point
    This last ten yeArs at the club must have cost us a core of youth support not winning the league , being a repeated laughing stock in Europe .
    Two worthless fa cup wins cuts no ice with the youth.

  97. Wallace


    “Jesus, that’s a pathetic response. Honestly. As I’ve said, the Chelsea team we beat 3-0 is not the Chelsea team currently lighting up the PL. Different formation, different spirit, different energy level, different everything. Anyone who watched that game and has watched Chelsea since knows this.”

    you think we should offer to play the game again now that they have themselves sorted out?

    maybe we could ask Liverpool if they wouldn’t mind replaying the opening game of the season now that all our players are back and up to speed…

  98. Rambo Ramsey

    Wallace, you are missing the point. The Chelsea result looks like an anomaly rather than the norm.

    Whenever Arsenal are up against top opposition, nobody-not the pundits, neutral fans, heck even our own fans-will ever back us to come out of the contest on top. Until this changes, we have absolutely no chance of winning the PL.

  99. Rambo Ramsey

    We have a pretty damn good squad, more than capable of consistently beating other top sides and competing for the PL.

    Let there be no doubt that all our struggles are down to the management team.

  100. karim

    Wallace has a point.

    We beat Chelsea who’s top, whether they were in good shape or not.
    We beat Leicester twice last season, who went on to win the league comfortably.
    We had a couple of wins v United or City the seasons before.
    Won the Cup twice as well.
    Stopped losing our best players also.

    Where has this led us to ?
    Not far I agree.

    But we beat big teams at a far better frequence than we used to.
    That’s a small improvement, not enough though because we’re all desperate for success and even when Wenger gets us closer, we’re still disappointing when it really matters.

  101. DogsBollocks

    After the Arsenal game Conte was favourite with the bookies to be sacked.
    Conte and Klopps movements on the touch line are part of their make up but it is not a sign of a good manager is their record that counts. Louis van Gall hardly moves does it make him a bad manager.