Arsenal stink out Beijing with familiar performance

by .

via @arsenal

via @arsenal

You can’t read too much into preseason friendly results. However, you can’t brush off the purpose of them. To build fitness, to test new systems, to hone your style. It’s a preparation test bed. So when you watch Arsenal disappoint in the same way they did the whole season before, it’s hard not to worry that there’s a significance to what you’re seeing.

Cheslea playing their first preseason friendly looked stronger, fitter and far more interested than Arsenal. They pretty much dominated proceedings from start to finish. They dealt with us in the same clinical fashion that saw them dominate the league with such ease last season.

Arsenal looked weak. We looked tired. Worst of all, we looked distinctly uninterested in the game. The players were mailing it in. Now, you could cite the stomach bug of midweek being a problem. You could cite the issues we’re having getting our best players back into the squad. Or you could just look at the reality of the situation > we haven’t really moved the needle this summer.

We were very shaky at the back, letting Chelsea blitz us through the middle with ease. We were slow at transitioning in attack, hardly causing Chelsea a problem all game. Alarmingly, Lacazette looked distinctively average, struggling to free up any space in the first half at all. We had to resort to bringing on Giroud to shake things up. My big fear with our new Frenchman is he’s not as fast as Ligue 1 would have you believe, couple that with his lack of physical presence… and, well, you’ve got the case for a converting a £56m striker to a winger.

My big fear at the back of last season was the success of our ‘new’ formation was in fact, a bit of a red herring. We mostly played a collection of teams who had nothing to play for and we beat them. We had a superb cup final, but it’s always hard to read too much into a one off on such a grand stage. Do we really think stealing a formation is going to make us world beaters?

Today, our setup looked unorganised and lacking in purpose. The players really didn’t understand what they were doing in the same way Chelsea players did. That’s to be expected, because Conte is a different type of coach (a good one), but if we take a tanking in the Community Shield, it’ll set a poor tone for the start of the season.

Wenger hasn’t invested properly this summer. Chelsea is bulking up in areas they were already strong in. We’re sprinkling in a back up left back – who really is struggling – with an expensive striker who at best, will take a number of months to get up to speed.

There really has been very little change. It’s just same old Wenger, over and over again.

We’ll see though. It is preseason. There is still time to make additions to the squad. There’s still time to address system problems. We can still purchase players.

I just don’t see it happening.

Over to you…

 

 

695 Responses to “Arsenal stink out Beijing with familiar performance”

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  1. reality check

    sanmiJuly 22, 2017 14:27:00

    the early preseason games are where you test out various experiments (we found out monreal can play CB in it). The last 2 preseason games are where you work on gelling! (that is your emirates cup)What is the noise about? He could try cech in CF, who cares. as long as they get a run out and are not injured.
    /
    I disagree and will continue to make noise. I’m sure, many on leGrove will also continue to make noise.

    Thank you for your interest in our affairs.

  2. Boomslang

    We should be going for players like Lex Steele and Manuel Ferrara.

    They’d certainly give us more penetration.

  3. Bamford10

    As much as I long ago recognized Wenger’s hopelessness, I think I still thought that he’d be a bit more motivated, serious and goal-oriented this summer. Nope. He’s still a fucking joke.

    In many ways the mistake over Giroud is emblematic: Arsenal just aren’t a well-run team.

    Wenger out.

  4. Moray

    If anyone ever doubted the importance of a coach to a team then they just need to look at Arsenal under Wenger. He even failed to win the CL with the Invincibles. Poor preparation, poor motivation and absolutely nothing in the bag to change things around mid game. More of the same next season.

  5. reality check

    “You could cite the issues we’re having getting our best players back into the squad”

    What “best players” are these. Don’t give people excuses Pedro. Sanchez and Bellerin, Mustaphi is all i can think of that hasn’t featured so far on this ridiculous tour.

    Most of our MAIN PLAYERS have played and they’ve all looked average. Which is what they are at best.
    Wally, Xhaka, Ramsey, Laca, Giroud, Coq, Kos, Cech (best player so far on this tour), Welbeck, Monreal, Mert, Ox, Iwobi….Ozil.

    Are these not our “best players”?

    “Alarmingly, Lacazette looked distinctively average, struggling to free up any space in the first half at all. We had to resort to bringing on Giroud to shake things up. My big fear with our new Frenchman is he’s not as fast as Ligue 1 would have you believe, couple that with his lack of physical presence… and, well, you’ve got the case for a converting a £56m striker to a winger.”

    CC had a big old moan at me for saying exactly this.

    Good post.

  6. Moray

    Unless the Augean stables are cleaned out this summer, and there’s 10-15 names there that need no listing, then this season will be a rinse and repeat. Why put Wiltshire on loan? It’s a pointless exercise and just reduces his sell in value. Alexia is off and Ozil will stay on almost 300k per week for nothing. It’s a mismatched squad put together based in value over need by a manager that looks at transfer fee and forgets wages. Awful.

  7. Moray

    Gibbs is too expensive to sell for a fair fee. Most of them are. Look at what we sell for these days. That will give an indication of the quality of our players and the stupid salaries Wenger has them on.

  8. Moray

    Only Wenger in the whole of world
    Football pays the striker premium to bring in a guy only good enough to go on the wing.

    Lacazette would probably be a decent buy but only if the team play around him, which they won’t as they aren’t coached properly and have no accountability for what they do on the pitch. He will be Poldi mark two.

  9. reality check

    Knowing wenger. His lies and complete falling arse backwards into decisions.

    I can definitely see Laca playing LWF with Giroud up top. Why. Because Laca may not hold up the ball and will probably go missing, like walcott at CF.

    I hope not though. As none of this will be his fault. This mess was created years before Lacazette.

  10. Moray

    “Most of our MAIN PLAYERS have played and they’ve all looked average. Which is what they are at best.”

    Except It’s not about the players. It never has been. Leicester were hardly
    Galacticos when the won the league. Atletic Madrid while having good players rely on clever coaching and tactical
    Awareness. Buying and selling talent with Wenger remaining at the helm is pointless: like taking the Wehrmacht of 1939 and giving them French generals…

  11. Confidentgoner

    Moray, totally agree. Again, the club cries out for a DOF, and Wenger doesn’t want to. He gets in a physical trainer and a contract person! If he stinks out the club this season, he may need to leave before the second year. He may leave in disgrace- a la Monaco.

    History always finds a way to repeat itself.

  12. China

    The birds nest is a wonderful arena

    A guy tried to start a fight with me and my wife because I bellowed Wenger out after the second goal

    He then came back later and tried to ask my wife to fight him outside

    He got dragged off by his friends who realized neither me nor my wife can be fucked to take shit from some wannabe Arsenal fan who probably couldn’t name 3 first team players

    But therein lies something utterly disturbing. That the cult of arsene wenger runs so far wide and deep that Chinese people 7000km away would be willing to attack my wife if given the chance to defend their saviour

    I laughed at the loser as he got dragged away. Our tickets cost £100 per person and he’s defending the perpetrator of this shite we’re watching

    Truly a loser

  13. reality check

    MorayJuly 22, 2017 15:46:58

    “Most of our MAIN PLAYERS have played and they’ve all looked average. Which is what they are at best.
    \
    ”Except It’s not about the players. It never has been. Leicester were hardly
    Galacticos when the won the league.
    \
    Agreed

  14. daveg

    I mentioned it last year and the year before. We need an old fasioned midfield general who can hold the ball up and dictate the pace of the game. We have not had this since Paul Davis and then Patrick Veira. This gives our defenders time to re-position. We also need a left sided attacker who can cross the ball “early”, instead of the make shift rubish we use who after attacking down the left, they do nothing but wait for the opposition defence to re-group and end up passing the ball backwards and across in front of the oppositions back line, so predictable! Wenger must be blind if he can’t see this!

  15. Redtruth

    Moray
    “Except It’s not about the players. It never has been.”

    Bergkamp, Vieira, Henry, Adams, Overmars, Petit, Ljungberg, Pires, Kanu, Anelka

    You were saying….lol lol lol

  16. Confidentgoner

    If we had Conte as manager, he will clear out a lot of players. I see these four teams making top 4. Chelsea, Liverpool, ManU, and Man city.

    You know what they have in common? Wide players, great spine.

  17. Ben Olui

    Well said men, we arsenal fans should be ready for another disappointing season. To me, it doesn’t matter whom Wenger bring into arsenal, Messi, Lamar, even Ronaldo, nothing good thing will comes out of it. Infact, right now, nothing for Arsenal unless this guy is out of this club. Now, take a look at Chelsea’s team, compare to ours, playing Elney in the centre back, is a joke. Go out, buy the players you need but he wouldn’t, so for Arsenal to have any hope this season, what Wenger has to do is to buy a one centre back, the holding midfielder strong and more creative and and another striker that will help Alexander Laca, he is a good player though. A guy like Dambele of Celtic, what a player he is. Well, some fans might be saying its just pre-season games, remember, it’s how you laid your bed that you will sleep on it. At least to fight a war and win, you need good equipments, and good soldiers that are well trained. These arsenal teams are not ready. Welbeck is useless to depend on. Now, Alex Sanchez is leaving, uuuh! Tough time is ahead and we should prepare for another worst season. We have some fine teenages good players, but Wenger is not good enough to bring the best out of these kids, fine players, but the manager can’t motivate them , they will end up being wenger’ s players as usual. I am very concern again.

  18. Confidentgoner

    Moray is right. It’s about lousy coaching, poor team set up and preparations. During the drink break, he said nothing to his key players. He only had a word for the rookie left wing back. The guy is incompetent.

  19. Elmo

    “As much as I long ago recognized Wenger’s hopelessness, I think I still thought that he’d be a bit more motivated, serious and goal-oriented this summer. Nope. He’s still a fucking joke.”

    That’s the point, though. Most fans thought the events of last season meant, even for Wenger, it would be unthinkable just to plough on as before. Of course the reality is that he regards himself as having authoritatively and conclusively put down a rebellion at the end of last season, and sees himself as having re-exerted total dominion over the club. No catalyst for change, no wholesale sales of dross, no radical shake-up of his stale group of backroom henchmen; just business as usual for Wenger (make a couple of signings, sell a star or two, make no net improvement and then blame that on the state of the world and modern society).

  20. Cesc Appeal

    Not sure what positives you take out of today, often in preseason results can be off but there are some good performers. I suppose no injuries and perhaps some incentive to pull our finger out in the market. That was embarrassingly bad.

  21. BacaryisGod

    This Pedro post should have been the first sentence only.

    Not only is the pre-season but it’s also 3 weeks away from our first Premier League match. The Guardian put in perspective by joking that ‘Arsenal were rusty, and Arsene Wenger is a lucky man if he survives this defeat’.

    Let’s also remember that we’re not actually that good a team. We finished 5th last season and were 18 points behind Chelsea. Sadly, we’re not an elite team and we’ve had an unsettled pre-season due to Wenger’s contract situation and the strategy we’ve taken on player’s contracts running down. It’s not all down to us as we’ve tried to lock Alexis and Ozil down for a while but the pressure is more on the club than the player these days.

    Still, it’s not a coincidence that we’re in a bigger mess regarding contracts than anyone else. The only consolation is that it’s going to be hard to have much lower expectations heading into this season.

  22. HillWood

    Bringing on Giroud was akin to playing the second half against City with no Captain.
    Hey ho in Arsene we trust

  23. BacaryisGod

    Moray

    I have to call you out on your idiotic comment that Wenger even failed to win with the Invincibles. How about starting with the fact that he almost entirely created that Invincibles team.

    You just can’t have one comment without the other.

  24. Rambo Ramsey

    You just get this sense don’t you that Arsenal are gonna turn in a profit at the end of this window.

    Lacazette: 45-50 million is all we’ve spent. Sanchez sale alone would cover that most likely. Then you got Szczesny and the mooted sales of Chambers, Gibbs and Perez who will fetch a combined 40-50 million.

    Can see one more attacking player brought in, probably Mahrez for less than the sum above.

    So, all in all, a profit. Considering the disaster that was last season, it just beggars belief.

  25. Relieable Sauce

    Cross reckons Lemar is lined up ready for when Sanchez is sold.
    Hmmm, very accommodating of them.

    Looks a solid if not spectacular player to me on 1st impressions and I don’t really see what position he is desperately going to fill.
    LW in a back 4, LCM/LWB in a back 5… ??

    We have Welbinho, Iwobi and possibly Lacazette for the LW position with a front 3.

    Perhaps wenger is planning to switch to 442 counter attack game.
    : /

  26. Bamford10

    Bacary

    “Let’s also remember that we’re not actually that good a team.”

    Right, which is the reason we needed to use the summer window to improve massively. But Wenger hasn’t done that.

    Are you suggesting he has legitimate excuses for not having done that? I hope not.

  27. JAMES WOOD

    Yes lean all over me Giroud has gone the same way as where’s the ball Walcott.?
    why do so many players at Arsenal deteriorate so quickly over a few seasons.

    My theory is their all to comfortable playing under WENGER.
    Although Walcott was passed help yonks ago.
    LEHMAN may be the answer?Perhaps.
    I really don’t think he will take to much shit and we have it in bucket loads.?

  28. TR7

    Lemar is not a goal scoring player. I don’t understand this constant refrain about him being a replacement for Alexis. He looks more like a player who can help in build up play rather than take the attack to the opposition a la Alexis Sanchez. And then there is the issue of a young 21 years old player coming over and playing in a new league in a disjointed team. We were bad even with Alexis and without him I see us get worse.

  29. Moray

    Bac, if you’re going to quote me please quote me accurately. I said he failed to win the CL.

    Regardless of whether he put the team together or not, my point is that you need tactics and good coaching for a team to go out and win the big trophies on the biggest stages.

    I don’t see what two things you are referring to that are incompatible in what I said.
    Even our best team of the recent era shat itself when it came to the crunch.

    Tactics and coaching.

  30. Moray

    Red, put that team in the hands of a manager who has a clue and you win a lot more.

    Wenger now has a team less individually able, many of whom have been at the club for some time. You can see who’s swimming naked when the tide goes out and Wenger’s tide went out when he started replacing quality with shit over a decade ago.

    The constant is him, poor coaching and a loser “second place” mentality that Wenger was known for long before he joined us.

  31. karim

    2nd time in 3 days Lacazette has played with inoffensive players around him for 45 minutes and then got subbed.
    Ideal set-up for your record transfer, you couldn’t make it up !

    Had he played the second half with Ox, Giroud, Koscielny and others, pretty sure he would have had 3/4 opportunities to shine.

    Wenger really is infuriating sometimes.

  32. Ishola70

    So Wenger is denying all the Sanchez speculation with PSG.

    Called it media imagination.

    Let’s hope he is talking in reality because this team as it stands without Alexis Sanchez is hugely troubling.

  33. HighburyLegend

    Dont worry guys, like our dear charlie would say, “stop moaning you idiots, it was only a friendly”…

  34. karim

    Ishola

    It isn’t. The source said the player was there, its been confirmed by many others afterwards.
    They also said there was no agreement with Arsenal.

    Nothing Wenger has just said goes against yesterday’s story at first sight.

  35. Redtruth

    Moray
    “Red, put that team in the hands of a manager who has a clue and you win a lot more.”

    A decent coach would not have signed the majority of players at Arsenal..

  36. Ishola70

    karim:
    “It isn’t. The source said the player was there, its been confirmed by many others afterwards.
    They also said there was no agreement with Arsenal.Nothing Wenger has just said goes against yesterday’s story at first sight.”

    So Wenger is in denial again?

    He said it is all media imagination but yet his player is in a hotel that is owned by the Qataris.

    Not knocking the source btw. I mentioned the Paris Sanchez thing yesterday as well. Just before you 😉

  37. Moray

    nobody in their right mind would hire half of the bag of shit stinking up the Arsenal dressing room, but to make it worse many of them seem to be on rolling contracts of increasing magnitude.

  38. karim

    Ishola

    Yeah, noticed that ha ha !

    As for Wenger, he never denied Alexis was in Paris to negotiate his own potential deal, he just insisted he wouldn’t be sold, 2 different things.

  39. Rambo Ramsey

    Didn’t we finish above PSG in the CL group-stages last season and got Bayern while they got Barca?

  40. BacaryisGod

    Moray-let me try again.

    I have to call you out on your idiotic comment that Wenger even failed to win The Champions League with the Invincibles. How about starting with the fact that he almost entirely created that Invincibles team.You just can’t have one comment without the other.

    As for your broader point, there’s no doubt in general he hasn’t succeeded in Europe even with his best teams. He’s reached the final once, but that’s not really enough. However, Roberto Di Matteo and other far less accomplished managers have won the Champions League so I would hate to use that as the sole criteria for judging Wenger.

    The truth is that he’s a mixed bag. We all know it but most people like to take polar opposites. Not sure why. Just look at his record in F.A Cup finals. It’s fantastic. Then look at his consistency in finishing in the top 4. Great. Then look at his inability to build a title challenging side for over 10 years. Pathetic. Also look at his capitulation against top European sides in the knockout stages of the Champions League. Awful.

    Look at his great signings from bargains like Anelka, Toure, Koscielny and hopefully Holding to his bargain busts like Sanogo, Bischoff, Park and Kallstrom.

    It’s so obviously a mixed bag but people can’t see the bigger picture. Right now we should be in Europe’s Top Ten teams. It’s clear that we’re in the Top 20 but currently not realistically near the Top Ten. He is clearly underperforming. That’s why I was hoping we would change manager last season.

  41. Ishola70

    TR7:
    “We all know Wenger’s deliberate denial is merely a negotiation tactic. Sanchez is as good as gone.”

    What is he going to negotiate? Again I think too many people build up Arsene too much in these situations. I don’t think he has this great influence when it comes to this point with a player as people think.

    What’s the purpose of keep saying that the player is not leaving other than making the club look silly when and if he does?

    To make PSG pay a bigger price? Don’t think so. Player power is in force here.

    To attract bigger bids from other interested parties? Only Man City are interested other than PSG and people don’t want him going there.

    Wenger has always been obstinate and delusional. These utterances he makes about players not leaving now and in the past cover these traits and characteristics perfectly.

  42. Joe

    Rambo

    And PSG should have gone through. What happened was a freak of a nature once in a lifetime thing

    Whereas what happened to us has happened for 7 years in a row and more
    Often than not in the last 20

  43. BacaryisGod

    100% agree that Wenger’s position on Alexis is a negotiating tactic. Wenger has said countless times that if a player is absolutely determined to leave there’s not much a player can do.

    If we end up selling him to PSG instead of Man City, I can live with that. We all clearly want him to stay but if he wants out, then that’s the best option provided the money gets reinvested.

  44. Ishola70

    karim:
    “I tend to believe Wenger for once, hope he remains firm, we need Alexis way too much.”

    Again I don’t think it’s a good idea to keep a player who seems to want out so badly.

    I mean arranging and agreeing a deal with his hoped for new club.

    That is too much for me to think keeping him is realistic.

    And this is acknowledging that he is going to leave a massive hole in the team if he does go.

  45. karim

    Valverde wants Neymar to wear the armband tonight, will be interesting to see if the latter accepts.
    Did RVP play with it in that famous friendly game just before he left, just cannot remember it ?

  46. BacaryisGod

    Bamford

    There is a legitimate excuse for us not being an elite team. We don’t have an elite manager, an elite CEO or an elite manager (not any more, unfortunately).

  47. Joe

    Wenger holds no power if Sanchez truly wants to leave. He will sign in jan on a free for even a bigger per week salary with probably city PSG and Bayern fighting for his signature

    He’s not signing on with Arsenal

  48. Ishola70

    BacaryisGod:
    “100% agree that Wenger’s position on Alexis is a negotiating tactic.”

    What is he negotiating actually?

  49. karim

    Ishola

    Alexis can also tell psg to wait for January to make that deal effective while playing for us one last season.

    Can’t see him play like a ghost if he knows he’s joining a bigger team the season after.

    Don’t forget there’s a WC to prepare too.

  50. Ishola70

    Joe:
    “Wenger holds no power if Sanchez truly wants to leave.”

    Thank you.

    This is a predominately anti-Wenger blog as far as I know but there are plenty on here that like to big up Wenger’s influence and importance in such situations and matters.

    Strange.

  51. TR7

    Ishola, it’s not about building Wenger up. Saying a player is not for sale is a standard tactic employed by most if not all managers in the world to ramp up the bidding price. Arsene didn’t invent it himself, it’s not about him at all. What do you expect him to say ? That we have no other option but to sell Alexis ?

  52. BacaryisGod

    I think it was a great team, Red. It wasn’t a great squad and with tougher competition today I think they would struggle more now than before. We were also unusually lucky with injuries.

    However, I think that when you have 6 players who were in the Top 5 in the world in their positions and they show it through the course of an entire season, then that is clearly the core of a great team.

  53. Confidentgoner

    Ishola,

    Wenger is positioning for bigger money. Arsenal will sell north of £70. But Lemar is $80m. To completely replace Sanchez, you need a winger and a striker. Perhaps Lemar + Dembele of Celtic or Mahrez + Dembele.

    We buy at Primary!

  54. Ishola70

    karim:
    “Alexis can also tell psg to wait for January to make that deal effective while playing for us one last season.”

    If he was in Paris yesterday he obviously wants to get out this summer. Looks like he is in a hurry no?

    If he thought to play one more season and get picked up in January why the hurry now with PSG?

  55. Confidentgoner

    Ishola,

    Wenger is positioning for bigger money. Arsenal will sell north of £70. But Lemar is $80m. To completely replace Sanchez, you need a winger and a striker. Perhaps Lemar + Dembele of Celtic or Mahrez + Dembele.

    We buy at Primark!

  56. Ishola70

    TR7:
    “it’s not about building Wenger up. Saying a player is not for sale is a standard tactic employed by most if not all managers in the world to ramp up the bidding price. Arsene didn’t invent it himself, it’s not about him at all. What do you expect him to say ? That we have no other option but to sell Alexis ?”

    He could say no comment on the subject if asked.

    If the press take that as indicating that he is going to be sold so be it.

    I really don’t think Wenger and him keeping on saying that Sanchez is not going to be sold is going to make a huge diffeence in the end to the bidding price.

    Everyone knows it’s bluff from Wenger no? So why play along with it from the bidders point of view?

    Player power. That’s what this move will all be about.

  57. Leedsgunner

    The same people dismissing this game as irrelevant will be the same people who were crowing about us winning versus Australian teams.

    Lol.

    We will play Chelsea in actual games that matter in the season ahead. The Australian games were just money spinners.

    We have plenty of reasons to be worried in the season ahead.

    Not that Wenger will be concerned, mind you. In his mind the EPL season doesn’t begin until about 5 games in anyways. He will trot the same excuses when we come out of the traps unprepared.

  58. BacaryisGod

    One reason for Alexis going now is that his mind is no longer with the club. Another reason is that if he stays another year and gets a bad injury that could bring his value down.

  59. WestLondonGoon

    Cohen Bramall is obviously the new project for Wenger. Sorry, he shouldn’t be near this touring squad, shouldn’t be anywhere near Arsenal really. Looks a perfect fit for someone like Colchester or Southend. We should sell him on now for a million and make a quick profit on the massive £34k we paid for him 6 months ago.

  60. jwl

    Arsenal have much better chance of finishing top four, and getting back into Champs League, if we keep Sanchez this season and let him leave on free next summer. What money club gets for Sanchez this summer would be similar to money club receive for getting back into CL next summer and it would be easier to attract world class talent to club.

    I have been reading about Conte and his coaching methods, he does something called shadow play which helps players learn where they should be at all times. Anyways, with ambitious and talented managers like Conte, Klopp …. in league, Arsenal don’t have a chance with their reactionary manager.

  61. Ishola70

    Confidentgoner:
    “Wenger is positioning for bigger money”

    As said to TR7 it’s all bluff though isn’t it?

    If you know that and I know that the bidding club is sure going to know that as well.

    Everyone is forgetting player power here.

    We have seen this play out this player power time and time again in past situations such as these.

  62. Confidentgoner

    Arsenal can keep Sanchez till after next season. That is the contract. He cannot walkaway in January if we do not agree. We still have a say, and I think if we play hardball, Sanchez has no alternative than to sign up with us.

    Think about it. With Arsenal he can make £350k per week. He is currently on £140k per week. His agent will murder him if he decides not to sign. They have too much to loose.

    Normally in January, buying teams will buyout a player’s contract, but that is still subject to the owner club accepting.

    Holding on to Sanchez is the right strategy. Hopefully, before August, he will sign. ManU did it with De gea last season when Real turned his head.

  63. Confidentgoner

    Jwl,

    Any links on shadow play.. Interesting what these younger managers come up with!

    I don’t see Man city winning if they don’t address defense

  64. Adam A. Carbarundum

    I see that you are still drinking from the cup of optimism, Bamford. Can’t say that I can fault you for still having some hope left – you know certainly better but are a supporter in the end.

    This summer has been pretty much what I expected from someone who not only is looking older, but clearly losing wiseness as part of getting older. Buckle yourselves up, it’s going to be a very bumpy ride this season and if Wenger’s dealings to date are any indicator, it’s going to be a very long ride.

  65. Moray

    Bac, of course Wenger had his purple patch with us.

    That was a great team and that rivalry with Man Utd was exciting. But we fell short.

    However, with the funding and the stability he has had over the years, he should have achieved more. Some very bizarre decisions over the last decade or so really illustrate the decline.

    I don’t see the FA Cup as much of an achievement in recent years. Just look at the finalists…

    Constant 4th place is an achievement of sorts but we are perennial also rans at the top level. It all points to us not being good enough.. we have not really been in the running for much of note for years. It’s comfortable failure. I’m surprised people pay to see that shit any more as we don’t even play attractive football.

    Even Liverpool have won the Champions Leage, FFS.

  66. jwl

    Confidentgoner –

    “Conte is determined the shape should be right, and that means long hours on the training pitch, often playing against no opposition. So central is shadow play to Conte’s method that when Italy practised it at the Euro 2016, all but the smallest core of coaching staff were sent away so details of precisely what he was doing would not leak out.”

    https://www.theguardian.com/football/blog/2017/may/27/how-good-old-fashioned-shadow-play-has-helped-antonio-conte-light-up-chelsea

  67. Joe

    Even in his prime wenger went 3 seasons in a row without a trophy. And it was a 2 team league then.

    Elite manager haha

    JWL

    We won’t make top 4 with or without Sanchez. All other teams are improving themselves and have much better managers.

    Besides who cares about top 4. Unless we have a team competing for the league and CL/Europa , we are short , Sanchez or not

  68. Ishola70

    Do people here really want to pay 80m for Lemar?

    Wenger won’t for starters.

    I like the player but 80m?

  69. N5

    “I like the player but 80m?”

    In this market you pay what you have to pay now. He’s not worth that, but we’ll not get him otherwise.

    Clubs can set their prices….well anyone but us can.

  70. Ishola70

    N5:
    “I like the player but 80m?”In this market you pay what you have to pay now. He’s not worth that, but we’ll not get him otherwise.Clubs can set their prices….well anyone but us can.”

    You think Wenger will go down that road do you?

    Can’t see it.

  71. Joe

    City have agreed mendy deal.

    Lemar looking less likely by the day.

    Barca sell Neymar and mbappe could be heading there

  72. jwl

    Joe – I didn’t care about finishing top four while we did it for decade but I care now because it is going to be much harder to attract players to club than it already is. Having Champs League to offer to potential signings is helpful, Arsenal have to pay premium to attract talent when outside top four. Selling Sanchez is short sighted but that what I expect with Wenger.

  73. TR7

    JWL fascinating stuff , loved the following part –

    ‘They played a game with a full 11 on a full-sized pitch against nobody and without the ball!’ We would line up in our formation, I would tell players where the imaginary ball was and the players had to move accordingly, passing the imaginary ball and moving like clockwork around the pitch, based upon the players’ reactions.”

    With shadow play, he said, players “become more imaginative on the ball… they become more selective in their passing certainly, and keener in perception and the reading of their colleagues’ movements.”

    “The points was not for them to become robotic but to have a level of automatisation, to use Hazard’s term, that permitted improvisation without being disruptive to the overall shape.”

  74. TR7

    I don’t find Lemar as impressive as some of the other people here. Sure he is a good player but 80M would be daylight robbery.

  75. Joe

    JWL

    How many top players did we attract the last decade? Sanchez and Ozil. It’s because of wenger we don’t. Not CL. Jose was able to attract Ibra and pogba.

    We don’t get the players we need because of wenger. Not because of CL Particiaption. Sanago chamack kallstrom to name
    A few with CL

  76. N5

    TR7 it would be a fuck joke mate. £80m for any player bar Messi is a joke!!

    The whole transfer market is an absolute joke now. To the point that if someone pays £50m for a player, we’re now all…..what is he crap then?

    Something needs to happen before you’ve got players like Walcott being overpaid for average skillse…….oh forget that sentence 😀

  77. TR7

    N5, all that’s needed to prick the price bubble in football is to sell Theo for 50M to a club and the whole footballing world will come to its senses.

  78. Relieable Sauce

    Chelsea seemed to use their play well to get their players in 1v1’s and create openings with ease, you could see the whole team working as a unit. The play were Kolasinac got booked was really smart I thought.

  79. TR7

    “Daylight robbery is Lacazette”

    Yes true that but then I am wondering what would be an apt phrase to describe 90M odd for Romelu fucking Lukaku.

  80. Berg

    I might be wrong but I don’t think Lemar is as good as the other monoco players whenever Iv seen him play. The likes of Bernardo silva always seem to stand out more. And Lacazette is the French Darren Ben t so don’t expect too much

  81. Josip Skoblar

    The Neymar story to PSG realy has legs. They’re on the verge of signing the bloke for £196m…

  82. Berg

    TR7. £100m won’t buy you much in current. Great management banking the cash when it bought you a lot more. Weakensss of pound coupled with inflated transfer fees with Kornoke and wenger in charge we got no hope

  83. IvoryGoonz

    Evening peeps!
    Here’s my 3.5 cents for Wenger.
    It’s a real change of philosophy that needs to happen.
    Wenger needs to understand that when you want to compete for league titles and European glory, you need a real 25-Man squad. Not just a 12 man squad with youngsters or ok-players. He needs to read again some baseball genius anthology (Billy anyone?) to actually get back on top.
    And many available players would make drastic improvements on our team. Everywhere on the flicking pitch. So here’s my number and my email Arsène. I expect your call in the next few days. I’m available straight away. +33652988696 – dag.quer@googlemail.com. And yes, i know my shit. waiting your call, pussy!

  84. Alexanderhenry

    Even though that was a preseason, the performance was unacceptable.

    The defending was abysmal, the midfield just wanted to attack and I hope Lacazette is a lot better than that performance suggests.

    There is a lot of work to do for Arsenal in the transfer window. Forget the bullshit on Alexis, he’s leaving.
    If there was any genuine ambition at arsenal, he wouldn’t want to leave and even if he did, we’d have our replacements already secured.

    Instead arsenal are typically holding out for the highest bidder, while misleading the fans over the outcome and then wenger will pick up a couple of mid priced buys. Forget any really big signings.

    I think next season will be the year the wheels come off.

  85. Marko

    Not good is it really. Haven’t seen old Charlie for a couple days. No heel nipping just noticing you know. On today you could tell by the team selection alone Chelsea wanted it. Good thing really cause another win would give our manager another excuse for thinking we were any good

  86. Marko

    If there was any genuine ambition at arsenal, he wouldn’t want to leave and even if he did, we’d have our replacements already secured.

    Alex you’re starting to sound like me 3/4 years ago when the penny finally dropped for me. Good. Common sense should tell a person this is not acceptable for one of the most expensive football clubs in world football. Zero ambition and still losing our best players. Simply not good enough.

  87. Paulinho

    “If there was any genuine ambition at arsenal, he wouldn’t want to leave and even if he did, we’d have our replacements already secured.”

    Ambition is not really the issue. The issue is Wenger has had three years of Sanchez and made a complete balls up of competing for anything with him. If Sanchez stayed for another three years, he would still wouldn’t be able compete for anything. If Wenger and Arsenal are genuinely trying to keep him against his will then that is morally reprehensible. Wasting the career of someone desperate to be in a demanding, winning environment; and forcing him to stay in a commune of calamity.

    I strongly suspect Wenger is digging his heels in as long as possible because he knows what a fool he will look once again selling a star, only a few years after he said those days were thing of the past.

  88. loyika

    Not seeing what the fuss is all about on the game against Chelsea? If we had won it would have been seen as not important (and so it should be) we can’t have it both ways. We have had preseasons in the past where we bossed things and still messed up the season as a whole.

    Real footie starts with the Friday game against Leicester, every other thing before that is foreplay (including the Shield)

    @ Moray

    Yes Pool have won the UCL, so why haven’t they won the league since John Major was PM?

    @ Joe

    You keep mentioning Ibra and Pogba? One was free (and United were the only ones that wanted him or else he would have gone to the USA or China) and Pogba was not wanted by Madrid and since he had let Juve know he wanted to leave only United were ready to stump the cash for him. Jose didn’t have that much of an influence. Unless you are saying Pogba would have snubbed Zidane and Madrid to go to United? Now if you had said Lukaku….

    Anyways, Arsenal need to sort out the squad (ins and outs) asap. We are shyte as things stand right now. And not prepared for the start of the EPL with the squad as it is at the moment.

  89. Redtruth

    Loyika
    “Not seeing what the fuss is all about on the game against Chelsea? If we had won it would have been seen as not important (and so it should be) we can’t have it both ways. We have had preseasons in the past where we bossed things and still messed up the season as a whole.
    Real footie starts with the Friday game against Leicester, every other thing before that is foreplay (including the Shield)””

  90. Redtruth

    Loyika
    “Anyways, Arsenal need to sort out the squad (ins and outs) asap. We are shyte as things stand right now. And not prepared for the start of the EPL with the squad as it is at the moment.”

    Make your f****** mind up..

  91. china

    chelsea almost scored after about 6 seconds today

    it would’ve been one of the fastest goals in history

    realistically they could’ve scored 4 or 5 if they hadn’t kept holding back on pulling the trigger when they had sighters in dangerous positions

  92. Sky

    Draxler and Lucas Moura playing time will be significantly reduced if Sanchez and Neymar joins PSG. Arsenal should be pushing hard for both players. They may not be world beaters but they are much better than Walcott, Welbeck or any other player that will be left for the wing positions after the departure of Sanchez.

  93. Pierre

    China
    “I laughed at the loser as he got dragged away. Our tickets cost £100 per person and he’s defending the perpetrator of this shite we’re watching
    Truly a loser”

    The only loser is you for paying £200 to see a meaningless pre season friendly and subjecting your wife to receive threats because you just couldn’t resist shouting “Wenger out”….. Not the brightest thing to do is it…..
    And, by the way, I am not condoning the threats made at your wife… They are just as brainless as you…

  94. Alexanderhenry

    Marko

    I’ve known something’s been rotten at the heart of arsenal for years.

    Definitely from the point we sold cesc and nasri at least.
    Wenger is part of it- especially recently- and should go, but I’m afraid he’s not the main cause.

    I get slated on here for mentioning ‘you know who’, but under a certain silent
    american, arsenal are going nowhere.

    The club has become the footballing equivalent of a beached whale.

  95. loyika

    @ Red

    The squad is not prepared regardless of how we get on in preeason is my point.

    We bossed majority of preseason last term and yet fvuked up the opener against Pool.

    I don’t need a loss to Chelsea or Pen shoot out win against Bayern to tell me this. Just looking at the business done so far, while ok in itself still leaves quite bit to be desired.

    Preseason games or not should not be an excuse to not get in the players required or let go of those not required.

  96. loyika

    @ China

    Pierre does have a point though…. why waste 200 quid to go watch a game just so you could scream “Wenger Out!?” What were you hoping to achieve?

    You knew emotions get high over such antics and yet subjected your Wife to that? so blaming the other Punter is a bit rich don’t you say.

    You had an opportunity of a day out in with the Wife at a beautiful stadia to watch 2 good teams engage in a preseason game, instead of enjoying the quality time out with the Missus (despite Arsenal playing crappy) you chose to make your day out about Arsene!?

    Waste of time and money if you ask me. But its your money so guess its your cake to eat. Glad you guys (in the end) were safe though and hope the Missus wasn’t too shaken by the threats. Footie ultimately is just a game/entertainment and should not be something we expose ourselves to violence over.

  97. HillWood

    Did Mr Kroenke field an illegible player whilst throwing a hissy fit at the officials or was it our highly professional “coach”

  98. N5

    “Is this blog still narrating it’s own narration?”

    It’s narrating the notion of nation tasting testing, whilst motion from potion got spilt in the ocean.

  99. N5

    “Resigning exposes Kroenke to more scrutiny while remaining exposes Wenger as a parasite…”

    Red you’re on fire today man. Keep up the good work.

  100. Guns of Hackney

    Red truth

    I said yesterday, and I will reiterate…you my boy, should guest post this shit.

    N5. That reminded me of the terrible, M People. She was a terrible rhymer…ghost, toast, most, boast, coast. That kind of ting.

  101. N5

    GoH, I resent that remark! I’m a silent member of the Wu Tang, the call me Old smelly twatbag!!

    So stick that in your pipe, until it’s ripe……..Psyche.

    *drops the mic, like a boooooooosss.

  102. graham62

    loyika

    The thing is, it is always about Arsene. Best not to go and waste your money until this clown’s out the door. Why was he at Grampus 8 again? MYTH! MYTH! MYTH! Adam’s, Bergkamp, Henry etc They know the real Wenger. It’ll all come out in the wash one day. Crap manager, crap coach………crap everything! Total and utter embarrasment!

  103. Guns of Hackney

    N5

    Baby I got your money, I said hey, dirty, baby I got your money…

    This forum would do better if it turned into a musical or filmic blog. It would ride the cream to the top…reading semi illiterate, Wenger morons makes me sad.

    But then why do I read? Paradox city. You’re in the jungle baby…you gonna die!

  104. N5

    “But then why do I read? Paradox city. You’re in the jungle baby…you gonna die!”

    I blame you, about 7 years ago I used to read and you and gambon used to make me laugh so much that I stuck around.

    I assume you’re the original GoH?

  105. Guns of Hackney

    I am the original. Peter banned me once around 2012 (I think) for what i imagine was ‘extremist views’ about Wenger. Ironic really considering the shit people write now. I came back about 8 months ago to see what was going down and lots of good people were gone. Gambon has retired. Made love to magic is gone…etc etc.

    To be honest, I’m just winding people up. I refuse to support Arsenal until the poison is gone.

  106. Sanmi

    I stopped reading when he said lacazette isn’t as fast as ligue 1….. Bullshit!
    He’s fast end of!
    Too early to judge him.
    Chelsea played 10 of their regulars at the onset. Wenger opted for Niles and a youngster at LWB. it will have effect. I’ll judge readiness at emirate cup 1st halfs.