Arsene pushes player/fan apathy to new lows in entertaining sh*t show

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Everything good and bad about Danny W was on display yesterday as Arsenal bumbled their way past the worst Southampton side we’ve seen in 5 years. He missed an open goal so wide you could have squeezed Samir Nasri’s arse through it, he assisted with a delightful deft touch, and he banged in two goals, one with a scruffy deflection, the other with an opportunistic header at the back post.

It was Danny’s day, but it wasn’t one you’d look back on with a great deal of fondness. It was Arsenal at their most banterful. The ground was half empty, the players were preserving their legs on the off chance they could land a starting place in Russia this Thursday, and the output of the day was a touch bizarre.

We went one goal down early. Tadic and Cedric made mincemeat of Chambers and Kolasinac down the left, a speculative ball was fired at our front post with the curve moving away from the keeper, Mustafi just zoned out like he’d had a clean energy production epiphany, Shane Long nipped in and put it past Cech. A defensive error so very symptomatic of any Wenger side you could remember over the past fifteen years.

The German would likely be a machine under a proper manager who cared about defence, but he’s not with us. He’s clumsy, he’s a finger-wagger like Flamini, and he’s ever so average.

We clawed a goal back in a sumptuous move. Elneney found Auba from deep midfield, he laid off Iwobes who returned the pass, a quick one-two with WELBZ set the man from Gabon free to poke his shot inside the keepers post.

9 minutes later Danny W picked up a great ball from Iwobi, he cut inside right and rifled a deflected shot into the top corner from 20 yards. Has the man ever had a clean shot? Can we call this a strategy now? A great goal regardless.

Their second goal was a collection of very Arsenal fuck-ups. We weren’t alert to their quick freekick, we managed to get away with the first ball fizzed across our box, Jack Wilshere was pottering around and didn’t get close to Hojberg on the edge of the box. The Dane played a one-two with Tadic, crossed across a now packed box and found Charlie Austin for a near instant goal after he came on as a sub. Utterly embarrassing. I mean, I’m not even touching on Chambers shocking clearance, another player who looked off the pace all day. That £23m we rejected for him looking crazier by the day.

I thought we’d see out a point, but Danny Welbeck had other ideas, popping up to nod home a looping Iwobi cross in the 80th minute.

The game wasn’t finished from a drama perspective, Jack Wilshere had to make an impact the only way he knows how to these days. He had a tussle with Stephens just outside the Stoke box and didn’t like the outcome. He decided to track him down as he powered through the middle of the pitch, Jack ripped his shirt because he couldn’t keep pace with the centre back, and was instantly thrown to the floor in retaliation. Jack got up, protested, landed Stephens a red card, he managed to get away with a yellow. Then Elneney got involved in the mess and landed a red. A real joke of a situation that was completely unnecessary.

An entertaining afternoon, no doubt. But entertaining like a comical WWE bout. We shouldn’t be conceding 2 goals to relegation fodder under any circumstances, let alone at home. We shouldn’t be picking up late red cards in nothing matches. We shouldn’t be so flat. But we are. Arsenal is a weird old place at the moment.

Aubameayang is an interesting striker. He’s starting to settle into the rhythm of the first team, he’s offering up the runs our playmaker’s dream of, and he’s starting to connect better with the build-up play. His MO is goals, and pretty much just goals. I don’t think he wants to be involved in the play like a Thierry, Robin or Alexis would be. His end product outside of goals isn’t great, and I don’t expect we’ll be seeing much in the way of link-up play like a Giroud would offer. But, look, he scores goals. He’s now our most prolific striker over the first 7 games, beating out Davor Suker (Opta inventing stats to new levels). It would be a real shame not to give him a run with a proper manager, in a proper team. Next year is going to be him at his peak, we need to max out his value and that won’t be with Wenger.

Jack Wilshere was disappointing again. The apologists will say his head isn’t in the game at the moment as he’s thinking about his contract. Well, that never stopped Theo and it certainly isn’t stopping Ramsey pulling up trees (nor Ozil earlier in the season). I think it’s mostly because he doesn’t have the extra level we’d hoped would be there. He’s 26 now, and he’s no more interesting than he was when he was 18. At least when he was a kid, you felt he cared about the game, I look at him now and wonder if he’s just in it for the wages and the good life at home? He’s certainly not playing like he wants a new deal or a move to a better club. I’m not sure I’d be whacking £100k p/w on him based on what we’ve seen this year.

Arsene is clearly blowing all on zero at the roulette table. It’s the only way he saves this season. We’ll win on Thursday, and he’ll have a chance at a new deal because Stan and Josh don’t understand the context of failure. If he makes the final, he’ll have to avoid Atleti, who have so many levels to their game. I watched them respond to going 1 down at Madrid. They have many great players and a coach who can change the game from the touchline. We have no chance against them over two legs, and it’ll be a Chelsea like miracle over one game.

But we’ll see… this season is the Europa mission. A shame for the home fans, because the Premier League season is like watching paint dry. The apathy in the ground is met in the living rooms. Pray we don’t mess up Thursday.

See you in the comments, and watch our podcast where Matt and I discuss:

  • Aubameyeng: Hit or miss?
  • The case for our defence: Who stays or goes?
  • Iwobi: Hero in waiting, or another Nik B?
  • Jack Wilshere: What do you do with him?

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537 Responses to “Arsene pushes player/fan apathy to new lows in entertaining sh*t show”

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  1. Frankie Coffeecakes

    Yesterdays display justified the empty seats on display. Makes one seriously wonder, why bother with such a shit team? Saw many things unfold as scenarios of keeping Wenger on beyond his past expiry date and what we are seeing now, as a regular event now, is pretty much what one could and should expect. Its only going to far worse from here on out and only Wenger and the board can change it. You arent fooling anyone any longer.

  2. Peter12

    It is great, isn’t it? We have no central defenders (Chambers and Mustafi aren’t good enough for Premier League). In fact I can’t think of ANY central defender in the league as poor as those two. We don’t have any fullbacks because Kola isn’t a fullback and nor is Bellerin really – Bellerin being far more interested in fashion than improving his technique (though he wasn’t as bad yesterday). Mustafa was shocking, absolutely shocking as he has been most of the season. This is what you get when when you buy players on the last day of the window – trolley dash. Chambers was not even first choice at Southampton. Wenger paid an eye-watering £18m few years ago for a second choice at Southampton for God’s sake. iOS has unfortunately has passed it. Sooooo, we desperately need at least TWO central defender good enough to play in PL as well as TWO fullbacks, sell Bellerin. And, and, and, we of course desperately need a defensive midfielder. A proper defense coach is a must. As for Wenger, the Board must declare NOW that he will be replaced at the end of this season and they must make sure that he is marched out of the Emirates FOR GOOD! Any other manager will do, ANY. This is my view.

  3. HighburyLegend

    “the Board must declare NOW that he will be replaced at the end of this season ”

    I don’t get you comment, he will stay, period.
    You have obviously missed an episode…

  4. PhD07

    PhD07April 9, 2018 09:36:30
    EmiratesstrollerApril 9, 2018 08:55:09
    After the Moscow game I suggested that Arsenal are heavily dependent on scoring a lot of goals in all our games in order to win. We will need our three
    goals advantage in Moscow because you cannot rely on us not conceding two
    or three goals there.

    So far we have conceded 60 goals this season in all competitions and that tells
    you just how poor we are in defence.
    ————————————
    With all due respect,I think you are stating the bleeding obvious.

    Roll back,almost a decade-it’s never been any different under his tenure.

    Arsene’s dubious defensive record since 2010 is questionable at best, amongst other inherent flaws.

    .See the list /track record below.

    The following stats probably proves this(in all competitions):-

    Goals conceded:
    2010/2011-58 goals

    2011/2012-62 goals

    2012/2013-58 goals

    2013/2014-51 goals

    2014/2015-52 goals

    2015/2016-59 goals

    2016/2017-65 goals

    2017/2018-61 goals

    It’s the norm,not the exception.

    Cheers 🙂

  5. Carts

    Haven’t seen anything from yesterday’s game.

    We got the 3 points, just, against a poor Soton team that look like relegation beckons. They simply don’t look like they have anything left.

    Disappointing really, considering their squad is actually better than many teams above them, a la Burnley.

  6. Emiratesstroller

    Pedro

    Arsenal need to plan their transfer window now and not leave it as they usually do until last minute.

    My view is that offensively Arsenal have got good enough resources with three new players recruited this season in Aubameyang, Lacazette and Mkhitaryan. When you add in Ozil and Ramsey the quality is good enough to play
    against opposition in EPL.

    Messrs Welbeck and Iwobi are not good enough to play in starting lineup, but
    are perhaps okay for bench.

    However, there is still an opening in our team for a top quality winger, but not
    at the expense of recruiting in midfield, defence and goalkeeping positions.

    My view is that Wilshire should be allowed to leave even if he does so on a Bosman. He is not good enough to play for Arsenal as he proved once again yesterday.

    The defence is a shambles. Yet I could visualise easily that under better manager and coaching some of the players could improve. Ideally we need to recruit a CB who is a team leader and shows some intelligence, but that alone will not solve our problems.

    I am sure that players like Bellerin, Chambers and Holding would improve
    under different managers and coaches as many of their predecessors who
    have left the club in past have managed to do.

    We need as a priority to replace Cech. There is only one direction that this player will go and that is downwards.

  7. JAMES WOOD

    EMIRATES
    That’s just not possible to do our business now with Wenger still in control
    He’s judgement on player’s quality’s is at best less than average.

  8. HighburyLegend

    “There is only one direction that this player will go and that is downwards.”

    Just like his manager… which does not prevent him from staying lol

  9. Ishola70

    “it is time for French intellectuals to “act as the modest and efficient servants of the public, bowing to the principles of an empirical and pragmatic policy.”

  10. Frankie Coffeecakes

    Its a difficult situation. On one hand the backroom has improved with Sven and Raul and they are doing their part in identifying talent and bringing it in, but on the other hand there is that skinny wrinkly elephant in the room, that guy who wont leave the party no matter how many hints you give him. Until Wenger goes and a right proper manager is brought in, progress continues on a one step forward two steps back routine – and nothing good ever comes of that.

  11. Frankie Coffeecakes

    Many have said it and i agree entirely, yesterday showed exactly why Arsenal should nor re-sign Jack Wilshere. The monies paid to him would be better invested elsewhere.

  12. PhD07

    Frankie CoffeecakesApril 9, 2018 10:36:38

    “but on the other hand there is that skinny wrinkly elephant in the room, that guy who wont leave the party no matter how many hints you give him. ”

    ————-
    Sounds familiar,with a particular poster on here.
    Lives in a makeshift delusional world.Opinions are facts.A lie is the truth,and the truth is a lie.

    Speechless.

  13. englandsbest

    The best thing about yesterday was the empty seats. Spurs fans turn up no matter what, they’re a masochistic bunch who enjoy a good moan. Whereas Arsenal supporters historically show displeasure by staying away. It’s taken a while longer than in the past, but loyalty is a two-way street, and the people who run the Club do not give a stuff for the fans.

    We get an occasional bone to keep us quiet. Perhaps Wenger will be sacrificed by them this summer. Don’t be fooled. They will look for another scapegoat willing to take the flak just like him.

  14. Carts

    Nice pod, Pedro.

    Just to focus on Wilshere for a second – he’s finished. Such a nothing player. Haven’t see his performance from yesterday’s game but it’s gotten to a point whereby Wilshere is shite to watch.

    He’s angling for improved terms on a new deal – which I get. All professional sportmen do and will.

    But If we lose him in the summer, I can assure you we wouldn’t miss his presence.

  15. Bamford10

    Pedro

    All we need from Auba is the ability to stretch defenses and goals. We don’t need a total footballer a la Henry, & I don’t think anyone here thought that that’s what we were getting.

    As for Mustafi, while I agree he would be better under a better manager, his mistake yesterday was one that no good defender should ever make under ANY circumstances. His decision there — waiting for Cech to come to a ball that was clearly his —was shockingly bad and suggests his mentality and instincts are wrong.

  16. Samesong

    As for Mustafi, while I agree he would be better under a better manager

    Bamford I am not convinced by this whatsoever he makes mistakes regularly and his tackling sometimes is ridiculous. He will still do the same under another manager. He’s a defender that needs a leader next to him to instruct him on the pitch.

  17. Samesong

    It’s going to Mustafigate here today because he still isn’t forgiven for that lame ass attempt at claming a foul when the ball bounced over his head. Not a good defender in my opinion.

  18. Bamford10

    Samesong

    I partly agree. That’s why I highlighted a mistake of his that is probably beyond the reach of coaching.

    I mean, re-watch their first goal: what good defender would ever do what he did there?

    I do think his positioning could be better if he had better instruction, but I agree that he has other issues that may be uncorrectable.

  19. Bamford10

    Carts

    If you’re rebuilding this summer, whom do you keep / re-sign? Whom do you sell or let go? Who should be in the XI next season?

  20. Michael24

    Emiratesstroller

    No offense intended, but sometimes your posts also leave me shaking my head in disbelief.

    You do open yourself up to criticism by basically highlighting what is THE BLEDDIN OBVIOUS. For example, Arsenal’s defensive frailties have been evident since 1866!!

    @RT often reacts out of frustration and anger, mainly because many fans, not just yourself, feel the need to inform those of us who, you assume, know no better, what is happening at AFC.

    I personally find it hilarious that fans who highlight so many facets of the club that are blindingly obvious and have been for years, don’t seem to grasp why people, like RT, react the way they do.

    @RT, for the most part, is direct and to the point and says it as it is. Although he can sometimes be a little ott, I wouldn’t take it too personally. There’s far worse on here.

    Maybe in future you should consider your options when posting on the blog, or merely accept the consequences.

    Remember, the vast majority of posters hate what has happened to their beloved club and are insensitive to anyone who continues to promote things that have been evident for over a decade.

    Cheers.

  21. Park Chu-young's left testicle

    Sorry Pedro, I can’t take anybody who wears a girls blouse seriously – except a girl or a transgender.

  22. Champagne Charlie

    This notion that “no good defender” would’ve done what Mustafi did is utter bollocks, some of he very best defenders ever have made similar brain dead decisions (or lack of decisions).

    Good to see some ‘students of the game’ are continuing their reactionary drivel.

    Maybe Mustafi just needs to be played at RB for us to see his best? 🙂

  23. S Asoa

    Frankie CoffeecakesApril 9, 2018 10:36:38“
    but on the other hand there is that skinny wrinkly elephant in the room, that guy who wont leave the party no matter how many hints you give him. ”

    Apt, describes the situation decently, even without the pile os shit the wrinkled elephant deposits. Might be caviar to some, but reeks definitely.
    Well put Cupcakes

  24. Bamford10

    I feel like someone is a little obsessed with everything I say.

    I encourage everyone here to re-watch Mustafi’s blunder on the first goal and decide for themselves how bad a blunder it was. P

  25. Carts

    Bamford

    Man, where do you start.

    I remember several seasons ago, we’d all be in here talking about rebuilding. Fast forward several seasons and we’re still discussing it.

    The level of neglect by Wenger has pushed us back, massively. But to answer your question, I’d start by getting rid of the following players based on a varied reasons:

    Cech – he finished as a top level goalkeeper. Tbh, Chelsea knew this and got rid.

    Bellerin – his head is gone. Going through the motions; seems uninterested.

    Chambers – just an all round rubbish defender. As with a lot of players, I do wonder what would’ve been if coached by a different manager/coach.

    Welbeck – irrespective of his little goal scoring splurge, he, too, is pathetic at the art of football. Just an all round shit player. Even more funny that Wenger wants to “ties him down”.

    Wilshere – proved to me that he’s overrated, and probably always has been. Incredibly limited for someone who was billed as our best English midfielder.

    I haven’t a clue how Wenger fits in Auba, Lacazette, Ozil, Mkh, Ramsey and Xhaka. I say that cos based on age, position and salary, the aforementioned, must be shoe-horned in. Or at least that’s what Wenger will do.

    We need a manager, GK, RB, CB, DM. Anything more than that means we’d just be over saturated with quantity over quality. You’re looking at a net spend of close to £150m, I think.

  26. Emiratesstroller

    Michael 24

    If you read Le Grove and in particular people like RT they will find fault with
    virtually anything and anyone.

    Arsenal’s failings are well known particularly this season, but it does not mean
    that all our players are shit.

    We have seen time and time again players who had indifferent seasons at Arsenal but have then moved on elsewhere and won trophies.

    It is interesting to note that 3 defenders who achieved nothing at Arsenal
    went on to win major trophies at Man City i.e. Toure, Sagna and Clichy.

    We offloaded this season Gabriel and Debuchy both of whom played indifferently for us. Yet Gabriel has had an outstanding season at Valencia and Debuchy is by all accounts challenging for a place in French National Team.

    There has to come a time when the Major Shareholder and Senior Management recognise that holding onto Wenger is counterproductive.

  27. Guns of Brixton

    “We offloaded this season Gabriel and Debuchy both of whom played indifferently for us. Yet Gabriel has had an outstanding season at Valencia and Debuchy is by all accounts challenging for a place in French National Team.”

    This.

    Exactly what I am saying.

  28. Michael24

    ES

    Exactly!!!

    It’s just a pity that our gutless fanbase don’t “recognise that holding onto Wenger is counterproductive”.

    There I go again, stating the bleeding obvious yet again.

  29. Michael24

    The reason players like Gabriel and Debauchery have improved is because………..wait for it……………………..Wenger is crap!!!

    Have you got it now?!?

  30. HighburyLegend

    It’s a bit hilarious… Debuchy is a complete different player.

    Fortunatelly for him he left before being totally wengerized lol

  31. Carts

    If we win the EL Wenger needs to step-the-fuck-down. For the love of the club and fan base.I just don’t see the rationale, outside of arrogance, as to why he want to stay on. We need to apply as much pressure on the board as possible.

  32. JAMES WOOD

    Yes Bandyford it was a bad error Mustafi made
    that was blatantly obvious but did you read what
    Champers actually wrote.
    Some of the very best defenders have made similar mistakes.
    There’s no argument there but it seems you just need to be more right
    than other posters on every post.
    Perhaps you just have that type of personality disorder i don’t know.?
    But your becoming weirder & WEIRDER.

    And one other comment i will pass on to you.
    “If your going to continue to lie—-you must improve your memory.”

  33. HighburyLegend

    The Invincibles.

    Seems to be a sweet dream coming from a galaxy far away.
    Not sure it really happened…

  34. Champagne Charlie

    Wenger has lost his way managerially, I mean as much as his philosophy is flawed where before it was balanced and delivered success.

    Imo he was totally in awe of that Barca side and tried to conjure his own version of it. The trouble being he didn’t have players at that technical level, albeit they were quality, and his version didn’t account for what the team needed to do without the ball nearly as much as when they had it.

    Today you see the evidence of the mans confusion because our team is terrible without the ball, but also lacks fluidity and diversity in attack.

    I personally don’t think we’ve been very good in terms of attacking for a good five or so years. That’s always going to be an issue when it’s what you hang your hat on, you can’t be suspect defensively and tepid up top and expect consistent results.

    That defensive ‘flaw’ (being kind) is the precise reason good/great sides tear us to shreds more frequently than any other big side. Idk about the majority on here but top 6 league I always expect us bottom, and glamour ties in Europe I can never even kid myself that we’ll advance. Be part of an entertaining game maybe, but win? Nope, never think it’s a likely outcome.

  35. Bob N16

    Michael 24, accusing Stroller of stating the bleeding obvious and then for the umpteenth time writing Wenger must go! Amazing.

  36. useroz

    No point asking these Qs if Wenger doesn’t fuck off.

    *Aubameyeng: Hit or miss? More likely than not…

    The case for our defence: Who stays or goes?
    Mert reiring
    Keep – Kos, Holding, Monreal, Kola
    Sell/ dump – Jenk, Chambers, Mustafi, Bellerin (if gets 40m+)

    Iwobi: Hero in waiting, or another Nik B?
    Sell

    Jack Wilshere: What do you do with him?
    Sell…too late

  37. Bob N16

    CC – I can’t recall a successful side that doesn’t have a good defence. I know City are better attacking than defending (as I suppose are Liverpool). However, bottom line, there are times in a season when you will only score one goal in a game – those games are the one’s you want to keep a clean sheet, great defending, goal keeping masterclass.

    Wenger clearly does not worry about defensive issues, in the same way he’s concerned by our passing game. Repeat, repeat, repeat. Watching Mustafi’s schoolboy defending 30 yards away from me on Sunday made me so angry.

    Please can Minslat identify some quality in defence…GK, CB, DM and whether Wenger has one more season or not, the defence is improved in spite of his continued mismanagement. I’m hopeful.

  38. OleGunner

    God, I am so over everything to do with this current Arsenal squad, I feel absolutely nothing win/lose/draw.
    Even more disheartening but not unexpected to hear Wenger talking today about summer signings.

    The sea urchin is not going anywhere. I’m seriously not up for another year of his tripe.

  39. UTarse

    “There has to come a time when the Major Shareholder and Senior Management recognise that holding onto Wenger is counterproductive.”

    ES,
    Don’t you think as season ticket holders we can at least try to influence this notion ?

  40. Champagne Charlie

    Bob N16

    I agree, Wenger abandoned defensive responsibility when he sought his Barca style system. Massive oversight not to acknowledge how good they were defensively in terms of positional discipline and accountability.

    I love the fact Arsenal are a team that embraces the responsibility to entertain and produce attacking football. But there has to be a balance, it’s irritating that it was once there and has been lost in some ridiculous search for idealistic football. We’re a ways away from superiority in either discipline.

  41. Micheal

    Our defence is a total shambles. The lack of organisation and discipline is shocking.
    TGhe point which intrigues me is how some so-called quality players seem to go downhill as soon s they pull on our shirt.
    Mustafi – has 20+ caps for the best national side in the world, icnluding a World Cup Medal
    Debuchey

  42. HighburyLegend

    “how some so-called quality players seem to go downhill as soon s they pull on our shirt.”

    That’s what we call the “wenger effect”.

  43. Micheal

    Our defence is a total shambles. The lack of organisation and discipline is shocking.
    TGhe point which intrigues me is how some so-called quality players seem to go downhill as soon s they pull on our shirt.
    For example:

    Mustafi – has 20+ caps for the best national side in the world, including a World Cup Medal
    Debuchey – a regular for France with over 25 aps, now having a great season by all accounts
    Kolasinac – best left back in German league before signing for us

  44. Paulinho

    “Wenger has lost his way managerially, I mean as much as his philosophy is flawed where before it was balanced and delivered success.”

    He hasn’t lost his way. This is just pure Wenger we are seeing now, and it would’ve been seen a lot earlier if the George Graham players weren’t there to compliment/completely hold up his ‘idealistic’ philosophy of nicey niceyness. Also had the advantage of being only foreigner in the league and so reaped the benefits of the continental preparation and the knowledge of the best french generation ever seen.

    This is the real Wenger we are seeing. The mid-nineties to 2004 was a freak convergence of factors coming together. What we are seeing now are Wenger’s capabilities in a more neutral, level playing field. Style doesn’t have much to with it; 2005-2008 was the only time we played genuine top level combination football. After that it was just Wenger’s spin and lazy minds that kept that perception going, when in reality we were just talented rag-tag group of individuals that could pull out the odd good home performance,and it’s been that way for ten years.

  45. Michael24

    Bob and Charlie

    True, but there is a massive difference between @ES monologue of interpretations and my own simple and repetitive Wenger out strategy.

    ES is highlighting facts and figures that are evident to anyone who knows anything about the game, whereas my own Wenger out fixation is based on the clear fact that he is destroying everything the club stands for.

    It’s called NOT BEATING ABOUT THE BUSH, something that you lot have absolutely no concept of.

    “Yeh, we want Wenger out but we’ll keep cheering the lads on”.

    Hypocrites but still hilarious.

  46. jasongms

    Win the Europa and it’s an almost certainty that Wenger signs for another 2 years. It’ll leave a real sour residue if we win our first European trophy in over 20 years with the knowledge that it’ll secure the man another contract.

    He’s already got that gleam back in his eyes.

  47. Bob N16

    Difficult to understand, Michael.
    Mustafi can appear excellent, then he makes a schoolboy error. On Sunday, his lack of awareness was schocking. Southampton were playing 4-5-1, as one of the two CBs, your main focus has to be the CF. Cech or another defender could have given him a shout but he was ball watching.

    Can Wenger be blamed for this? I know it’s become popular to blame Wenger for the state of the economy, the amount of rain we’re having etc but I think Mustafi is simply not that good. So he can be blamed for his acquisition I suppose. How he’s played so many times for Germany is mystifying.

  48. Bob N16

    I know you’re on a mission Michael 24 but it’s still stating the bleeding obvious, however you want to dress it up.

    The fact that you’re rude when you’re being hypocritical just makes some people respond negatively to you. Not sure what the rudeness achieves but go for it, if you have to.

  49. Micheal

    “Difficult to understand, Michael.
    Mustafi can appear excellent, then he makes a schoolboy error. On Sunday, his lack of awareness was schocking. ”

    I agree 100%. But there is a definite link between these rated players and their subsequent performance in red and white. As someone who has played and watched football for many years, my belief is that the basic fault is the defensive coaching – or the lack of it.

    Otherwise I am at a total loss to explain why good, international standard players like Mustafi, Debuchey, etc decline so fast at Arsenal. Were they bad players before they came ? There is no definitive answer but did the best left back in German league become a poor player overnight or a World Cup winner become a laughing stock so fast ?

  50. UTarse

    BobN16, and anyone else who cares to have an opinion,
    Do you believe if we won the Europa that wenger would :
    A) Gracefully leave on this “high” ?
    OR
    B) See out his contract and then leave in 2019 ?
    OR
    C) Run to Stan for a further 2 year mandate till 2021 at the least ?

  51. Micheal

    “BobN16, and anyone else who cares to have an opinion,
    Do you believe if we won the Europa that wenger would :
    A) Gracefully leave on this “high” ?
    OR
    B) See out his contract and then leave in 2019 ?
    OR
    C) Run to Stan for a further 2 year mandate till 2021 at the least ?”

    C

  52. Frankie Coffeecakes

    “ I encourage everyone here to re-watch Mustafi’s blunder on the first goal and decide for themselves how bad a blunder it was. “

    Well Bamford, it most certainly was a brain fart, the kind that sadly and frustratingly we have become accustomed to with Mustafi. To be honest, if he’d spend less time pointing fingers and complaining he might actually pass for a marginal footballer. In his totality, weve not seen the worst that he has to offer. And i believe i am being fair with my assessment.

  53. Frankie Coffeecakes

    This much IS true, should Arsenal win the EL you absolutely know that Wenger will not only not leave, but he will actively campaign for an extension, using this accomplishment as a platform of his own perceived success and greatness.

    Wenger has absolutely no shame, never has and never will.

  54. Pedro

    Michael24, to call fans who go to games and cheer the team hypocrites totally misundertands what it is to be part of a football tribe.

    You support your team no matter what, if you can turn off when you don’t like something, you’re not really in the game for the right reasons.

  55. Michael24

    BobN16

    “Mission?”

    No, just putting my club first.

    For the most part I feel I am not rude, more sarcastic.

    The fact that I use the word hypocrite in describing many on here has no bearing on my own perspectives.

    Why am I hypocritical? I want Wenger out and blame him for all our on pitch frailties. You don’t. Then again, you do ( see how confused you all are)and yet you continue to convince yourselves that there are others to blame.

    You blame the players for their on field mistakes, mistakes that have become so predictable and repetitive over the years that anyone with the slightest knowledge of the game, could fathom out. Ever heard of a positive mindset? Create this and you minimise mistakes.

    Maybe I am on a mission after all, but it’s only because I want my club back.

    Wenger is the common denominator in all our failings, not the owner, not the board.

    If you’re going to blame anyone else, blame yourselves.

  56. Bob N16

    UTarse,
    No way A is happening unless he has health issues.
    If next season shows an improvement C.
    Might be B.

    Still hoping Josh shows some balls and Wenger is encouraged to leave. Best solution by a mile… 1 in 20 shot I’d guess!

  57. steve

    Michael24, to call fans who go to games and cheer the team hypocrites totally misundertands what it is to be part of a football tribe.You support your team no matter what, if you can turn off when you don’t like something, you’re not really in the game for the right reasons.

    ___

    You’re missing the point completely. Normally you wouldn’t do that but this ain’t a normal situation either that we’re in.

  58. Frankie Coffeecakes

    Apathy being what it is, it really wont be too long before anyone and everyone who supports the team will become disinterested and head elsewhere to occupy their time.

    To Pedro, you consistently keep forgetting something – football is just a game. In the end, who gives two you-know-whats. To say that its about being part of a football tribe? Thats the most magnificent pile of cow flop ever! Its a game…get it yet?

  59. Bob N16

    Calling you hypocritical Michael 24 about stating the bleeding obvious.
    Almost everybody wants Wenger gone.

    Heard of a fixed mindset, look in the mirror.

    Criticising Arsenal supporters for supporting the team is also a certain mindset, I’ll leave you to fill in the adjective!

  60. Michael24

    A NINE YEAR OLD PUTS EVERYTHING INTO PERSPECTIVE.

    Every Saturday morning I help out coaching a local U10 team.

    Last weekend I placed a few marker cones out to work on some drills. Unbeknowingly I put a cone out with the Arsenal crest on.

    A nine year old lad looked at the cone and shouted out “Yuk!!, Arsenal. They’re rubbish!!”

    “Why’s that?” I replied.

    “Because Arsene Wenger is no good and they make lots of mistakes”

    I had to agree with him.

    The cone survived!

  61. Michael24

    BobN16

    Your hitting your head against a brick wall on this one and you know it!

    “Almost everyone wants Wenger gone” Some, though, want him out more than others

    Keep cheering him on then, because that’s what you’re doing.

    Cheering for something that is fundamentally flawed, is not in my Psyche.

  62. Bob N16

    Frankie, I don’t think following a blog most days demonstrates that much apathy. Everybody on here cares, otherwise we wouldn’t bother.
    To use a cliche, my own DNA doesn’t allow me to be apathetic about Arsenal…ever since I was seven. Anybody who has ever known me associates me with a consistent passion for Arsenal. For me It’s not a switch to turn on or off. It’s not a choice. So when someone suggests I shouldn’t go to games, for me that’s almost not possible.
    I do understand other people have a different take on it. Fair enough, go for it.
    Wenger out!

  63. Bob N16

    Michael 24, you have come completely fixated. I don’t accept the premise that Wenger and Arsenal are one and the same. Are you old enough to remember Arsenal pre Wenger? It’s almost as though your world and perspective has shrunk to Arsenal = Wenger.
    He’ll be gone, whether it’s this summer or me

  64. Bob N16

    this summer or next. Sometimes I feel people have convinced themselves that he’s staying for another ten years….

  65. Bob N16

    Great cross Iwobi, Danny showing some character. Who’s that guy beginning with W you’re talking about Michael….never heard of him?

  66. Michael24

    BobN16

    “Passion” for something that you love, which is being destroyed proves that your own DNA is flawed.

    Now that may be construed as being rude, but please don’t talk to me about your committment to the club. Weak and feeble imo.

    I love Arsenal but will not stand by and tolerate(support) a regime that has become poisonous to the extreme.

    As usual, when the going gets tough, the all too familiar excuse syndrome sets in.

  67. Michael24

    Ever worked or played in a team environment Bob?

    Yes, was attached to the club well in advance of Monsieur Wenger.

    Bertie Meet ring a bell?

  68. Leftsidesanch

    Of course Wengers staying next year, but in a way this is the only way you’ll keep the fans away. They’re too “respectful” to make their feelings known but an increasing number are so bored of it all that they just can’t be bothered to show up. That will only get worse the longer this goes on for.

    I saw Arsene’s interview citing mental strength/resources and could have been forgiven for thinking it was a rehash for any of his interviews over the last 8 years.

  69. Kay

    Supporting football is one thing.
    Supporting Arsenal turning into garbage year after year is totally different.

    We all know who is to blame. If we keep supporting the agenda of ‘let him resign when he wants’, when it happens, you would have chosen a different interest already.

  70. Bob N16

    Michael 24, in the mid 70s we were completely average, in Graham’s final years the cups masked mid table mediocrity. I’m not happy about being 6th but we will compete again.

    Don’t be so dramatic. I’m mildly obsessed by Arsenal but I can see there’s a lot more serious shit in the world than a favourite football team ‘languishing’in 6th place, get a grip.

  71. Bob N16

    Michael 24 17.31, ‘try explaining that…’

    Good luck with explaining Kay 17.22 last paragraph Michael. Have read it three times and you’re a better man than me if you can work out what he’s saying.

  72. Victorious

    Bob
    I feel you’re wasting time and energy on Micheal24,anybody that blames the fanbase or especially match going fans for the charade going on at Arsenal shouldn’t be taken serious,it simply means their take on Arsenal soundly revolves only on Wenger and thereby can’t be arsed to see a bigger picture when things could very much return to normalcy

  73. Victorious

    Michael24, to call fans who go to games and cheer the team hypocrites totally misundertands what it is to be part of a football tribe.
    You support your team no matter what, if you can turn off when you don’t like something, you’re not really in the game for the right reasons.

    concisely put

  74. Bob N16

    Victorious, you’re right, the Wenger = AFC position is too entrenched.

    I just got worked up when he had a go at Stroller who was simply posting his views on the team.

    Leaving it now, apologies for clogging up the thread.

  75. Michael24

    Welcome to the show @ Victorious.

    Your valued and constructive input is always worth waiting for.

    Not that I really absorb any of it.

    @Bob

    Of course there’s more serious shit going on in the world.

    Thanks for the insight.

  76. Emiratesstroller

    Michael 24

    You are beginning to sound like RT Mark 2.

    You like slagging other posters.

    The fact is that Arsenal’s performance level this season is the worst that it has been during Wenger era. That is reflected in our position in league, the number of defeats [10] and the goals conceded which stands now at over 60.

    In the past we have conceded silly goals primarily due to zonal marking at corners and set pieces. This season most are conceded from poor marking and schoolboy errors. There is absolutely no communication level as we saw
    on Sunday.

    My point that Arsenal need now to score heavily in our games even against weak opposition such as Moscow, Stoke and Southampton is fairly recent.

    We might have conceded 3-4 goals in past against Real Madrid, Barcelona and
    Bayern Munich. Even perhaps an in form Liverpool, Spurs, Man City or Man Utd.

    However, I would not expect us to do so against relegation teams or someone
    like Nottingham Forest in FA Cup.

    That is a material difference this season compared with past.

    Arsenal’s current low attendances are down to the poor standard of football being played and not because of Wenger, although he is the major problem.

  77. Champagne Charlie

    “It’s called NOT BEATING ABOUT THE BUSH, something that you lot have absolutely no concept of.“Yeh, we want Wenger out but we’ll keep cheering the lads on”.Hypocrites but still hilarious.“

    You’re so edgy and cool mate.

    I pay to watch Arsenal, it’s the team I support. I want change because the club needs new life, but irrespective of that the baseline requirement and desire I have as a fan is seeing my team do well.

    That applies in a micro and macro level. When I watch them play, I want good football and a result. When they have a trophy to play for, I want them to win. When the future of players/managers is up for debate then I want certain action.

    Your ‘Wenger out, fuck Arsenal’ approach is modern fandom in a nutshell.

  78. champagne charlie

    “This is the real Wenger we are seeing. The mid-nineties to 2004 was a freak convergence of factors coming together.”

    Arguably the most ridiculous comment I’ve ever read on here, which is quite the thing.

    Attributing a decade of relative success to”factors coming together” is an amazing show of ignorance/dishonesty. It’s people with views like you that I find the hardest to stomach, you’re a small man if you can’t recognise the good someone has done and instead belittle them out of hatred. Says a good many things about you.

  79. JAMES WOOD

    SE COUNTIES-METROPOLITAIN -COMBINATION & FIRST TEAM.
    I have supported every team.
    I saw Kelsey play his last game.
    I am Arsenal .
    But my total enjoyment will never be as it was till he leaves.
    Wenger has put this club back 10 years and destroyed the fan base.

    I can only look forward.

  80. Pierre

    The sky commentator at the start of last weekends game couldn’t resist taking the piss out of the poor ,hard done by Arsenal supporters .

    ” it’s terrible isn’t it, being in the top 6 and being on the brink of a European semi final and winning 3 FA cups in 4 seasons , you have got to feel real sympathy for them haven’t you”

  81. Emiratesstroller

    Pierre

    Cech is not Jim Furnell or even Almunia, but his performance level has declined dramatically this season.

    He has made a lot of errors and his reflexes and positional play is much worse than previously.

    Some goalkeepers are able to maintain form at 35. Sadly Cech appears not to be one. For me Goalkeeper is a priority, because none of the options are either
    good enough or have the experience to replace him.

    Arsenal are not going to spend mega bucks in transfer window. There will be
    a limit dependent also on sales.

    Goalkeeper and Centre Back should be the priority and dependent on how much budget is available beyond these two a new Central Midfielder.

  82. Pierre

    James wood

    You must have started supporting Arsenal probably around the same time as me ,during the George Eastham ,J. Baker era in the 60’s.

    Have you forgotten how average we were in those days , mid table , never competing for the league or FA cup until the early 70’s.
    Winning the fairs cup( which is equivalent to the Europa cup) at Highbury was considered a great achievement as was winning the FA cup ….

    Maybe history will say that this period (if we win the Europa cup) will be one of the most successful periods in the clubs history….

    The fan base was different in those days , more working class..nowadays it is more middle class and more cosmopolitan with a much higher percentage of female fans but let’s not forget that Highbury was never a noisy intimidating ground ,it had its occasional good days but generally the crowd were pretty docile other than the north bank Highbury .

  83. Pierre

    Stroller
    “Goalkeeper and Centre Back should be the priority and dependent on how much budget is available beyond these two a new Central Midfielder.”

    I would go along with that though I don’t think cech is quite so bad as you think.

    He started the season quite well then had a dodgy period just after Christmas but lately he has upped his game plus it doesn’t help when you have the unpredictable mustafi in front of you .

  84. Michael24

    Day off today, so been able to fight my corner far more than I had intended.

    Have been accused of “slagging off” other posters on here, just by highlighting things that even a “nine year old” has more concept of.

    Emiratesstroller/ BobN16/Victorious/champagne charlie have all hit back at my own forthright opinions. Good for you.

    @CC “Wenger out, fuck Arsenal approach” …………..really?!?!

    Yes, I want Wenger out with a passion, that goes without saying. However, irrespective of this, my love and loyalty to Arsenal FC will never die. That’s in my blood.

    “Loyalty” is not all about going to games, cheering for the lads, going for a piss up with your mates and accepting that change will eventually happen. It goes far deeper than that.

    I’ve done my fair share of terrace support over the years, but no longer have the desire or inclination to prove my loyalty by attending predictable and meaningless games and listening to the same old pathetic and boring rhetoric. All this could have been prevented long ago if our lily-livered fanbase had pulled their fingers out.

    Why should I congratulate those that support something and someone that is not only flawed, but doesn’t give a damn.

    You can abuse and ridicule me as much as you like, to be honest, I don’t care.

    Accepting the status quo is not showing loyalty. As we all know the situation at AFC is unique and cannot be compared to any other club both here in England or in Europe, so don’t give me that crap about being greatful for what we have.

    We have allowed this shit to manifest, but if you want to sit and accept it hoping that it will eventually end, so be it.

    Zero respect though.

    My honest and forthright opinion.

    The end.

  85. champagne charlie

    “Why should I congratulate those that support something and someone that is not only flawed, but doesn’t give a damn. You can abuse and ridicule me as much as you like, to be honest, I don’t care. Accepting the status quo is not showing loyalty”

    Nobody is asking for your congratulations, so thats an odd comment.

    Also, nobody is ridiculing you, it was pointed out that you chastised Emirates for “stating the obvious” yet proceeded in stating arguably THE most obvious of Arsenal topics for the millionth time. That is it.

    Finally, nobody is accepting of the status quo as everyone here wishes for change at the club. You find some people take exception to what you say because it doesn’t fall within their ideas of ‘supporting’ a team, yet you speak of your point of view as the correct way to behave. Supported with your “zero respect” nonsense you’ve just ended that comment with.

    Plenty of posters here can support the team and not the leadership. Because you can’t separate the two and refuse to support Arsenal for the time being doesn’t mean others should too, or that you’re correct in doing so. Maybe spend a touch less time preaching exactly how to be a fan. Just a thought.

  86. James wood

    Yes Pierre exactly around that time.
    Armstrong -Skirton and two Irish International
    full backs Mgill and Mculloch both useless.
    Liverpool was the noisiest game Baker and the
    Ron Yeats knockout come to mind.
    Most frightening night Glasgow Rangers playing
    Red Star Belgrade a confetti of beer bottles I was glad
    to get home.
    Most memorable as you mentioned The fairs cup final
    great days.

  87. englandsbest

    People say: football is only a game , why get uptight? Well, I could argue that football – or rather, the team you support – is much more than just about a game, And iosing one is not the reason I get so angry. It’s because we supporters have been taken for a ride, and nobody enjoys being treated as a fool. A catalogue of contempt, broken promises, outright lies. Does anyone in the hierarchy give a damn? Not that you’d notice. They send Josh over, Well, hooray! As for Wenger, he plays his ‘hard-done-by’ act to perfection. His values, how hard he works. his self-sacrifice – never mind the outrageous amount of money he gets paid.

  88. TonyD

    englandsbest
    Totally agree with you. The last AGM portrays your post perfectly as does Ivan’s suck-up-to-Wenger comments.

    Football isn’t what it was in the post eras of the 50s,60s, 70s etc ; it’s also no longer cloth cap supporter driven, although it was those supporters of past who helped keep the club alive financially.

    To be honest the real soul and blood and guts of the game is lost now because of the corporate money invested and revenues expected.

    The game has lost its edge in many ways as it becomes more of a non contact sport. The whole approach from the media has changed, as has the clubs’ priorities, such as playing second string players in the early FA cup rounds. That alone has very much devalued the FA cup and deflated whatever was once magical about FA cup final day.

    However, at the end of the day it’s about winning trophies and seriously challenging for them at the very least.

    These trophies are now the UCL and EPL mostly due by the financials they offer for being the best that run into the next season due to qualification and seeding.

    Money has in a way ruined the game for the working class.

    Today’s game is all about corporate money and the need to line the coffers of the owners and share holders. It’s nothing about the fans, which is so apparent with Kroenke, Gazidis, the BoD and Wenger.

    Fans are now expendable in their eyes because of the TV & sponsorship money et al.

    Elite cubs are worth billions now and that is all they really care about is increasing their billions.

    Will our club get back to really challenging for the real trophies? Probably, but not in the foreseeable future.

    Will the broken promises, lies, BS press statements and spin from the club continue?

    You bet it will after all it’s the corporate money driven mantra!

  89. TonyD

    Speaking of money……

    “Arsenal’s existing deal with Puma is worth £30m a season but adidas have indicated they are willing to invest significantly more.

    However, Puma, it is understood, have the option to match any offer made by a competitor while other sportswear firms have also shown an interest.

    Any deal north of £40m a year would represent a sizeable upgrade from the Gunners’ current deal.

    Also, the value of an agreement with adidas could increase further if the club regain their Champions League status by winning the Europa League this season.

    But despite the huge cash on offer, the deal on the table from adidas is still significantly short of those enjoyed by some of Arsenal’s domestic rivals. Manchester United’s adidas deal is worth £75m a year, while Chelsea’s deal with Nike is worth £60m per season.”

    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-5596541/Arsenal-talks-Adidas-40m-kit-deal.html#ixzz5CEk5sjoG

  90. Pierre

    There is nothing in that article to say that the deal being discussed is for £40 million…its just a figure plucked out of the air .
    If adidas are interested as well as other sportswear firms then the figure will be considerably higher.
    I don’t see why we would expect less than Chelsea as Arsenal have a larger world wide fan base with a greater history and tradition .

  91. Wallace

    Liverpool fans talking about how their rock solid defence means they’ll see this one out no problem 🙂 were we this smug back when we were good?

    think City will frighten the life out of them tonight if they get a goal in the first 20mins.

  92. TonyD

    “I don’t see why we would expect less than Chelsea as Arsenal have a larger world wide fan base with a greater history and tradition .”

    And you know this how, Pierre?

    You see Chelsea, Liverpool and United shirts all over Thailand being worn and sold but no Arsenal shirts. Ditto Malaysia and Singapore. I’ll be in Hong Kong Thursday, so I’ll check there for you.

    The Arsenal shop in Bangkok closed a couple of years ago.

    Next time you go abroad take some pictures of Arsenal shirts and post them.

    Just so you know the Isle of Wight, Jersey and Guernsey don’t quality for being abroad.

    Maybe this is why Chelsea get a better deal:

    In total, the club has won 27 major trophies;
    six titles, (3 in the last 8 years)
    Seven FA Cups,
    five League Cups
    four FA Community Shields,
    one UEFA Champions League,
    two UEFA Cup Winners’ Cups,
    one UEFA Europa League
    one UEFA Super Cup.

  93. Michael24

    The Arsenal brand image is not what it was.

    Fans of Football worldwide know where Arsenal stand in the pecking order.

    Well done Arsene!

  94. TonyD

    Frank Mc
    Generally teachers never leave school.

    They go to school – college/university-back to school to teach.

    Says it all really.

  95. Pierre

    I see tonyd now considers community shield, league cup, fa cup, Europa cup as major trophies.

    “Chelsea 27 major trophies”

    Arsenal 45 major trophies (6 in the last 4 years)

  96. Pierre

    Tonyd
    “You see Chelsea, Liverpool and United shirts all over Thailand being worn and sold but no Arsenal shirts. Ditto Malaysia and Singapore. I’ll be in Hong Kong Thursday, so I’ll check there for you.”

    Replicas….

  97. Pierre

    Tonyd
    “Next time you go abroad take some pictures of Arsenal shirts and post them.”

    What a cracking idea… Will go on holiday and waste my time looking for people with Arsenal shirts on…

  98. Wallace

    I’d back City to score at least 3 goals tonight 7, maybe 8 times out of 10. surprised at how confident the Liverpool fans seem about advancing fairly comfortably.

  99. Victorious

    TinyD talking outta his arse per usual,using just the Asia market to draw conclusion on how far down arsenal’s global image has fallen..aw!poor old clueless Tony… how about other continents?Arsenal’s jerseys and mechandize are mostly sort after in Africa and has the highest sales compared to other top clubs

    and this gem:
    In total, the club has won 27 major trophies;
    six titles, (3 in the last 8 years)
    Seven FA Cups,
    five League Cups
    four FA Community Shields,
    one UEFA Champions League,
    two UEFA Cup Winners’ Cups,
    one UEFA Europa League
    one UEFA Super Cup.

    go back and also include those “major” trophies some posters label as ‘rubber spoons’ in Arsenal’s trophy haul and see how much impressive we’ve been,cheers

  100. Victorious

    I’d back City to score at least 3 goals tonight 7, maybe 8 times out of 10. surprised at how confident the Liverpool fans seem about advancing fairly comfortably.

    You think dippers won’t pull at least a goal or two back?they are as much an attacking threat and would take a MASSIVE bottle job that dwarfs anything spuds has ever pulled for the dippers not to progress,imo

  101. Pierre

    I’ve just read that Chelsea had to pay Adidas £40 million compensation to break their contract to secure the Nike deal.

  102. TonyD

    Victoria
    Think you need to change your panty pad.

    By the way how many league titles and UCL titles have we won in the last 10 years.

    Deluded AKB at best.

  103. Wallace

    Victorious

    “You think dippers won’t pull at least a goal or two back?they are as much an attacking threat and would take a MASSIVE bottle job that dwarfs anything spuds has ever pulled for the dippers not to progress,imo”

    I think they’re forgetting just how crazy European nights can be. Liverpool fans should be more aware of that than anyone. recall our 2nd leg tie against Milan in 2012? RvP should have tied it up at 4-4 with what, an hour gone? this City side at their best can dominate a game entirely. personally I think it’s far from over.

  104. TonyD

    Pierre
    “Replicas”

    From their official shops in the main malls, right?

    Funny thing is you can’t even find replica Arsenal shirts on the foot path stalls. Obviously no money to be made. They sell plenty of other elite clubs’ merchandise, though.

  105. Carts

    I see this going two ways – everything Citeh touch turns to gold; or Larius is going to summon the Gods of De Gea and claw everything of the line.

    Either way, I’d be surprised if City keep a clean sheet..

  106. Guns of Brixton

    Going for a 2 – 1 for City.

    No way they won’t score, but Liverpool won’t bottle it that hard.

  107. TR7

    Mane -Salah -Firmino against a gung-ho City… well you have to back them to score at least one if not more and if that happens Liverpool go through to the semi-finals.