Disaster draw spells the end of the road OR an extension of hell

by & filed under News Review.

Screen Shot 2018-04-09 at 00.07.37

FEEEEEEEED ME EUROPA!

That was the call, and the footballing gods delivered.

Look, I’m not going to lie here, I see the weaknesses in what’s going on. I see the average output. I see players wearing the red and white that shouldn’t be. But damn, I’m not going to let that get in the way of my love for the competition and SUCCESS.

We’re in a semi-final. By hook or crook, we’ve managed to surpass expectations and continue the back door dream!

I put my foot in it massively yesterday when I doubted King Wele. No sooner had I lambasted his worth, than he was bearing down on goal curling a delicious through ball from the Egyptian Zidane. It was quite the goal. Spectacular. A little insight into what he could be if he focused his talent and got on with the job of being an incredible player.

Aaron Ramsey capped off the evening when the Egyptian King of Assists released him on a long breaking run. His engine powered him past the CSKA defence, his cool finish elevated the ball over the keeper, his passion for being a Europa King took us to the semi-final in non-humiliating fashion.

Sure, we can talk about how utterly average we were for the first 70minutes, but I’d only be doubling down on a reality you’re all too familiar with. Arsene Wenger doesn’t know what he’s doing and he’s being majorly flattered by a sub-standard European competition. We have floated into the semi’s without a real test, yet made a hash of Ostersunds at home, CSKA away, and Cologne in the group stages. Winning it will of course feel glorious, but I still think the trophy would need context when they review Wenger at the end of the season.

I mean, talking about winning things is ultimately futile now we know we have Atleti over two legs.

I’ve seen crazier things happen in football, but I’m not sure a team that ships two goals against a bunch of cloggers is going to be able to deal with the intensity of Atleti. Diego Costa, Griezmann, Saul, Oblak, Koke… it’s a wet dream of a squad, managed by one of the most tactically astute coaches in the world.

We can’t match them for quality, fitness, desire or smarts… I really can’t see this working out over two games.

Still, it’ll be a spectacle. There’s no better way for Wenger to show he’s up to it. We spend more than them, we have a richer squad, so there’s no excuse. If we win, then Wenger should carry on for another year, if we lose badly, it’s curtains (should be). There will be no glorious failure, there will be no story of progress because it’ll mean the first proper team we met we were spanked.

Also, for more perspective, be honest with the season. We’re firmly rooted in 6th place, and the team has been playing 1 game a week. Champions League football with this squad and manager next year will be absolutely horrible unless we have a new coach.

We should be going all in on Allegri, arguably the best coach on the planet at the moment.

Right, I uploaded the wrong podcast yesterday, sorry about that. Get on this real one. We were a bit pissed, so I’m not sure about quality. I also did a piece on radio drunk as well.

Things I learnt that do not sober you up:

  • Pizza
  • Loud music
  • Intense docu-dramas
  • Showers
  • Phone calls with an irate girlfriend

But what is a man to do? We just made the semi!

SEE YOU IN THE COMMENTS

DROPBOX | SPOTIFY | STITCHER | ITUNES | GOOGLE | POCKET CASTS

89 Responses to “Disaster draw spells the end of the road OR an extension of hell”

Jump to comment form ↓

  1. Bankz

    2 consecutive tr4phies in the same day.
    where is the fucking competition?
    I’m literally walking the legrove hall of fame

  2. Confidentgoner

    The problem with this team is its imbalance. It reared it’s head again in Moscow. Also certain players need to be dropped, Jack being one.
    Must say Elneny impressed as did Wellbeck too.
    The issue starts with our midfield. Ozil is a 10, not a winger. Ramsey is a 10 as well, but a different type of 10. We loose something by not having proper wingers in the team.
    Jack, Ramsey, Ozil all play a similar role. We use Bellerin and Nancho for width. No successful team does that. You create gaps to be exploited.
    We need structural adjustments. Sell Jack, sell Ramsey, Sell Xhaka since we have given Ozil a contract.
    Get a DM , a goal scoring CM, a CB and two wingers.
    Why sell Ramsey with all his goals? He bombs forward and sometimes gets goals, but his defensive awareness is limited.
    He is also at a stage contractually where he would want mega bucks, seeing we foolishly gave 200k to Mikki.

  3. Leedsgunner

    “We’re in a semi-final. By hook or crook, we’ve managed to surpass expectations and continue the back door dream!”

    Exceed expectations?

    My expectations for Arsenal, in this competition, was to win it, and I could not have been the only one. If we go out at the semi final stage — Wenger and Arsenal will have still underachieved… especially when Man Utd won it last year.

  4. Frankie Coffeecakes

    “Winning it will of course feel glorious, but I still think the trophy would need context when they review Wenger at the end of the season.”

    Wishful thinking at best, Pedro. A trophy is all that matters and should it be delivered they will all be heroes in the eyes of ownership and the board. Afterall, there is a financial windfall to be had with it. History will show that Wenger will be rewarded despite his increasing ineptitude and flat out abysmal abilities.

  5. TheBlaster

    While Atletico will probably be too good, I have to hope that we’ll beat them over two legs and go through to win, principally because getting the fourth CL place, however undeserved on League performance, would be the most monumental piss over Spurs chips in recent years!

  6. Frankie Coffeecakes

    Bottom line, fail to win Europa and this season goes down as an absolute failure on all fronts. Anyone that tries to qualify what has been on display this season as success of at any level, is certifiably insane.

  7. Frankie Coffeecakes

    Dont know what to honestly make of what you stated, TheBlaster? In the scope of a rather large picture I think you have hit upon likely the most insignificant portion of it.

  8. Elmo

    TheBlaster

    The 4th place trophy winners only lose the CL place if BOTH Liverpool win the CL and Arsenal win the EL.

    Possible, but unlikely. It would be a monumental mugging of Spuds if they finished 4th and that happened going into the first season in their new stadium.

  9. champagne charlie

    Not sure I buy into the idea Wenger would leave/get sacked should we lose the semi. I think there’s more of a chance he’s ushered out following European glory.

    The board and Stan are gutless, this we know, so I think it’d be a lot easier for them to stomach changing manager off the back of a trophy. Not confident either way that there’s leadership in place to navigate change, but fans live on hope.

  10. alexanderhenry

    CC

    ‘The board and Stan are gutless’.

    I reckon they’re quietly crapping themselves.

    People wonder why Stan re appointed wenger. Well, it’s called kicking the can down the road. Wenger has been the buffer for stan down the years, the man that took all the flak and has been willing to do so. It’s been so easy for Stan, sitting back and watching his investment grow while contributing nothing himself.

    The problem is this; wenger is now well and truly past it. He used to be able to cobble to together a fairly decent team despite everything ,but now – especially in the past two seasons- he’s made a mess of everything; transfers, tactics, the sanchez disaster, his relationship with fans, press and pundits etc.

    Stan may know nothing about football but I’m sure he knows this:

    Arsenal fc need a massive overhaul, a new manager and huge investment.
    He won’t put extra money into the club, won’t get a top coach IMO and everyone can forget extra money coming in.
    Add to that no CL next season a much more competitive league with spurs and liverpool in the mix and finally, the lack of safeguards enjoyed by franchise owners in the US, and arsenal fc doesn’t look like such a rosy investment anymore.

    He is clearly concentrating on the LA Rams and their new stadium is hugely expensive.
    Let’s all hope he sells arsenal and finally fucks off.

  11. Akilan

    Both Liverpool and Arsenal have to finish outside the top 4 and win their respective competitions AND spurs have to finish 4th to eliminate spurs from the UCL. Stop talking about this because Chelsea aint finishing above spurs.

  12. Michael24

    Three games from glory!

    Will Wenger’s and Arsenal’s luck finally come to end against AM?

    Of course, the vast majority, myself included, can’t see anything but a Atletico win.

    However, irrespective of Arsenal’s obvious frailties, I’m sure the Spaniards would have preferred either Marseille or Salzburg.

    Whatever happens, it will be a spectacle.

  13. Bamford10

    Alexanderhenry

    “He won’t put extra money into the club, won’t get a top coach IMO and everyone can forget extra money coming in.”

    One, he sent his son Josh to London for two months in order to study Arsenal and all of its processes, so he clearly cares about what is going on at Arsenal and is looking for Josh’s input on how things can be changed and improved.

    Two, he allowed Gazidis to hire Sanllehi (a DoF) and Mislintat, so he is clearly interested in a better and brighter (post-Wenger) future.

    Three, as has been pointed out COUNTLESS times now, the self-sustaining model was adopted by the board PRIOR to Kroenke, and Kroenke was required to promise to adhere to this model when he took majority control. Criticizing him for adhering to the model that Arsenal adopted prior to his taking control is ridiculous.

    Four, many of the better managers in the world make far less money than Arsene Wenger. Ownership could dismiss Wenger and hire a great manager — AND SAVE MONEY. So the notion that they would forego hiring a good manager on account of frugality is fucking bogus, like nearly everything you say.

    Five, you and others have still never explained why Stan Kroenke would want Arsenal to remain mediocre if it would cost no more money to be much, much better. Because this is very much the case: Arsenal could be much, much better — with a better manager — without spending any more money than we already do.

    The reason you and your lot have never explained the latter is because there is no explanation for it, and there is no explanation for it because that’s not what they want. No rational person would.

    They want Arsenal to be great again, but they have long wrongly believed that Wenger could make Arsenal great again. Just like you, Charlie and others, they were wrong about this.

  14. Bamford10

    Pedro

    Even winning the Europa shouldn’t grant Wenger another season at the helm. Despite spending plenty of money, we’re going to finish 6th in the PL and play out the season to half-empty stadiums. It’s over. He really, really needs to go this summer. And if by some miracle Arsenal manage to get past Atletico and win the Europa, this should be his moment to retire while “on top,” not an excuse to prolong the malaise.

  15. steve

    “If we win, then Wenger should carry on for another year”

    Lol what? Why should he carry on another year?

    “While Atletico will probably be too good, I have to hope that we’ll beat them over two legs and go through to win, principally because getting the fourth CL place, however undeserved on League performance, would be the most monumental piss over Spurs chips in recent years!”

    That’s not how the rules work. England would get five places in the CL just like this year.

  16. Guns of SF

    Wenger will either get replaced if not winning the EL or should retire should he win it. Either way, I pray that he leaves.
    damned if he does and doesnt.

  17. Guns of SF

    I do think we can take atleti at home. We need Laca to be sharp… he looked like shit yesterday and his body language when being subbed makes me a little worried. Atleti do not blow teams away but wear them down slowly. Almost a copy of us this season… looking to score late…. I think a quick goal to us in the game however can lead to more

  18. Akilan

    Wenger doesn’t have any mental problems. When he wins(back when he was still relevant) he usually comes across as a measured, decent chap.

    He’s narcissistic, selfish and a cunt(a different type to Mou). Nowadays he talks shite because he simply isn’t good enough. Nobody takes his comments seriously which leads him to say more and more outlandish statements. The concept of him being mentally ill absolves him from some of his fuckups(as someone already pointed out) and we shouldn’t do it.

  19. Akilan

    Victorious,
    Wenger isn’t the greatest ever manager mate. Not by any scale. That’s outright disrespectful to the greatest manager ever lived, Herbert Chapman.

  20. David Smith

    Wenger isn’t getting past the semis, he hasn’t beaten a decent team over two legs in, what, a decade?
    If he stays, as many have said, they will have to give him a two year deal this summer, or the circus starts again.
    Surely that is a step too far even for Stan? If it isn’t, we might as well all give up on the club and do something more interesting instead.
    If Wenger is still here in Aug after this season, if confirms for good Stan is happy with mediocrity, we could easily lose the semi and finish seventh.
    Call me an optimist, but I think even Stan has his limits, even with Wenger.
    Just weeks now.

  21. TR7

    Wenger will be our manager next season no matter what happens in Europa or in the league. And yes he won’t leave if he wins Europa,,rather he will use it to sign another contract. Some people never learn.

  22. Guns of SF

    TR7
    Alas, we are all used to his games by now. I think that the new management will not allow him to resign. Too much water now under the bridge. I think London would have a complete riot if that were to happen

  23. englandsbest

    Is Elnenny the man Arsenal have needed ever since Vieira and Gilberto departed? Last night he showed energy, commitment, endeavour, plus a few flashes of brilliance. His display suggests that he is the sort of player who thrives when given responsibility. A team player, not one who goes for the limelight.

    The pairing with Ramsay seems ideal, He fills in, covers Aaron’s forays. And to hold the Welshman back would be counter-productive in this purple patch of his. Another thing: Elnenny knows how to tackle., which is more than can be said for Xhaka or Jack.

    Nobody is suggesting that the Egyptian is as good as Patrick or Gilberto at their peak. But given a decent run, he may come close.

  24. champagne charlie

    Banford

    You don’t process counter arguments, you stick to a narrative and just rehash it. Throw in the fact Kroenkes “only mistake was giving Wenger a new deal, the rest is Wenger’s fault”… haven’t see you write that for a few days.

  25. Elmo

    To clarify on the 4th place thing, for Spuds to finish 4th and not qualify for the CL:
    – Liverpool have to finish outside the top 4
    – Liverpool have to win the CL
    – Arsenal have to win the EL

    In other words it’s essentially an impossibility, as Liverpool aren’t going to finish outside the top 4, let alone both the other events also happening.

  26. HillWood

    This may sound a tad weird but I actually want Arsenal to win every competition they’re in
    But as always
    Wenger Out

  27. Victorious

    “This may sound a tad weird but I actually want Arsenal to win every competition they’re in
    But as always
    Wenger Out”

    I can assure you mate there is nothing ‘weird’ in there,actually it’s what any ‘proper’ Arsenal fan would want

  28. Leedsgunner

    This may sound a tad weird but I actually want Arsenal to win every competition they’re in
    But as always
    Wenger Out

    This sums up how I feel.

  29. steve

    You can’t want Arsenal to win every competition and also want Wenger out. That idea is flawed. A manager who wins games will not get sacked or resign.

  30. Victorious

    wouldn’t get my hopes up if anything fruitful will come out from Josh supposed visit to London,he gave a quite vaguely and disappointing interview that made it more abundantly clear he was in London for ‘sight seeing’

  31. Guns of SF

    Steve I get your point but some on here want us to lose thinking that it will force Wenger out. We have seen that idea not work…. however- being a fan of Arsenal not Arsene is still valid. I also feel pissed or hurt when we lose. I know we can do better and also wish Wenger would leave or get fired. The lads on the pitch try their best the majority of the time so hard to fault them … some are just not good enough though. All in all comes down to Arsenal rebuilding from the inside out and hopefully that will happen sooner than later. Pieces in place already

  32. Dissenter

    Diego Costa appears to have taken a knock on his hamstring and may not be fit enough to face us.

    Never mind that we have to still content with Greizmann/Correa/Gramiero and Fernando Torres
    Then you have to factor in some of their excellent midfield players like Saul, Koke, Saul, Carrasco and Gaitan.

    It’s a long shot.

  33. HillWood

    Steve
    I have supported Arsenal FC all my life
    That pre dates
    The internet
    Sky Sports
    The Premier League
    The Champions League
    Arsène Wenger
    So please don’t tell me what I can and cannot want

  34. Marc

    Victorious

    What do you expect him to say? I’m here to sack the manager? I’m here to over see the short list for Wenger’s replacement? The piss poor performances and empty seats are scaring the shit out of me and Dad and we’re worries we’ll see a 30% drop out on season ticket renewals?

    Get a fucking grip, do you have the faintest on how people running large organisations operate?

  35. David Smith

    Amazing how often players supposedly not fit enough to,face,us rock up,and cause damage.
    Laccazette saying winning the Europa league may help Wenger keep his job, I would take him as a true insider on this matter

  36. Dissenter

    Josh Kroenke said exactly what the chief confidant of the major shareholder ought to say; nothing.

    Marc,
    Ignore “victorious”
    He thinks he’s the last standing goner, everyone else is not a pure fan like he is. He’s regarded as a pre-pubescent child who’s drifts in and out of attention trying to whip the blog in line behind Wenger.

  37. mysticleaves

    Reporter: “Arsene, thoughts on Liverpool’s success..”

    Wenger : “Well, errrr, they didn’t win the Premier league so they are not the best. Manchester City is the best, no?”

    Reporter: “Liverpool comfortably beat City across two legs, though. So technically they are?”

    Wenger: “When Leicester won the league we beat them twice. We did our job. The other teams didn’t do their job. We technically won the premier league. You people forget this. Respect me, please”.
    Reporter: “Wait, what?”
    Wenger: “Liverpool spent £75m on VVD. We have Chamber and Holding. People forget how young they both are. You must not forget this. me, respect me!”.

    Report: “Say what, now?”

    LMAO. this interview was so hilarious. Thanks to whomever put this together. Even more hilarious is the fact that Wenger could actually say these things lol

  38. PhD07

    JAMES WOODApril 13, 2018 17:33:53
    POST 17 23 48.
    “YOU AND YOUR LOT”
    TEDIOUS
    BORING
    REETITIVE.
    FROM MR SUBBUTEO.
    BANFORD GET A LIFE.

    BANFORD GET A LIFE.
    ———
    I’ll think you will find it’s pretty non-existent for him.

    It’s pretty much confined to this blog,on here everyday-24/7.Picking nonsensical fights,remonstrating,running to the official(s)-(Pedro) for some action to be taken,if any arguments run counter to his..i.e.banning,or waging bets to be off the blog for a year.
    Stating opinions as facts and just being a general A1 douchebag.

    Quite bizarre behaviour,if you ask me.Putting it politely.

    On another note-would be quite interesting to see how Pepe/Man City bounce back against Spurs.Possibly four consecutive defeats ?

  39. steve

    @HillWood

    I’m sorry but your logic is flawed. It is what it is. You’re just gonna have to make up your mind on this one. Either you want Wenger to stay or you don’t and that means sacrificing results.

  40. Thanos

    HillWoodApril 13, 2018 20:46:55
    Steve
    I have supported Arsenal FC all my life
    That pre dates
    The internet
    Sky Sports
    The Premier League
    The Champions League
    Arsène Wenger
    So please don’t tell me what I can and cannot want

    Have to agree and put in I also predate all of those and George graham I remember Liam bradys first season.God I am getting old

  41. Thanos

    Steve even if we lost every game until the end of the season I still think he would stay the ego on him is amazing

  42. PhD07

    Not sure why Zizou,is not getting the credit he deserves.

    It’s rare for a player that has won all the majors as a player-EC,WC,League Trophies,etc,etc..To translate that into one’s managerial career and win 2CL Back-2-Back’s,with a possible third in the pipeline.Plus a La Liga amongst other accolades,all within a 2.5 year period.

    I just think that’s an incredible feat.
    I mentioned a few years back,this is one guy-I’d love at Arsenal.
    He commands respect and he seems to be able to galvanise a team full of egos to perform for him over a period of time.

    How did Mourinho do,at RM in his time there?

    PS
    I’m biased a bit.Always loved Zizou as a player.Used to make me cry a bit.Poetry in motion,with the way,he played.Big game player-no doubt.And I reckon,CR7,has enhanced his mental and direct approach partly because of him.

    Surrounded and mentored by the best-you become the best.

  43. champagne charlie

    “I’m sorry but your logic is flawed. It is what it is. You’re just gonna have to make up your mind on this one. Either you want Wenger to stay or you don’t and that means sacrificing results”

    There’s no flawed logic, you’re the one operating on a made up premise.

    Absolutely no evidence that sacrificing results leads to change at Arsenal, we finished outside the top 4 last season (worst in 20 years) and Wenger was offered a two-year deal.

    How about you evolve enough to understand it’s entirely possible for people to support the teams success, and want a change of management. The two aren’t mutually exclusive.

  44. HillWood

    Charlie
    I know Patrick Reed ain’t popular but after 4 rounds at Augusta he totally deserved his win
    Hope you enjoyed it as much as I did

  45. HighburyLegend

    “Never mind that we have to still content with Greizmann/Correa/Gramiero and Fernando Torres”
    @Dissenter: why worry ?? Our goalkeeper is world class !!
    (lol)

  46. alexanderhenry

    Yes, arsenal are in crisis and yes our illustrious owner is aware of it.

    What does he do?

    He sends his son over to sort things out- obviously it’s not a big enough crisis for him to appear personally.

    This is what we got from young Josh:

    ‘We have a saying over at Arsenal, victory through harmony.

    ‘I think that victory through harmony can take a lot of different meanings, but for me victory through harmony comes from communication.

    ‘You got to have open and honest dialogue about the reality that we are on because if we are sugar coating anything about ourselves, about our team, about our direction, we’re only kidding ourselves and we’re only going to be worse off for it in the long run.’

    ‘It’s all different, but it’s all fruit to fruit Whether you are sitting in on transfer deadline day at the Arsenal training facility like I did a few weeks ago or you’re sitting in the trade deadline room of the NBA.

    ‘It’s similar conversations and it can all be compared and contrasted. The wants and need are all very similar.’

    This is an example of classic, 100%, five star, organic, michelin starred, Arsenal bullshit.

    ‘fruit to fruit’- ? what the fuck is he on about?

  47. Champagne charlie

    Hillwood

    I think Patrick’s cockiness gets overstated personally, he’s a pretty decent guy it seems to me. Deserved the jacket without question, superb stuff.

    Very entertaining Sunday I thought, poor from Rory, good from Rick, almost great from Jordan. Thoroughly enjoyed it!

  48. ArseneisaFraud

    Taken from SSN Paper Talk quoting the DT:

    Arsene Wenger is expected to remain as Arsenal manager beyond this season if the Gunners manage to make it to the Europa League final.

    http://www.skysports.com/football/transfer-paper-talk

    If that’s how high the bar is set at The Arsenal, well fuck me for falling off my chair at being dismayed at how “high” the bar is being set at the club.

    Now it would be hilarious if this was said before the draw. That being said, will they actually uphold their own KPI?

  49. Akilan

    Dissenter,
    Carrasco and Gaitan are playing in China mate. Atletico sold them in January I think.

    Diego Costa is out with a hammy last Thursday. My guess is they won’t risk him for the first leg. Juan Fran I think is out. Lucas Hernandez, their best defender is unfit right now. He may not be fully fit when he comes back/may be a bit ring rusty.

    Importantly as of now, they’ve got only 13 fit first teamers. We just may face them at the best time ever in the last five years.

  50. Akilan

    Guillem Ballague said atletico have problems facing set pieces at both ends. He also said their squad is super tired and injuries aren’t making it any easier.

    Considering we’ve been good at set pieces recently, could Monreal have a say?

  51. Akilan

    It’s Felipe Luis not Juanfran, their other full back is out injured. Lucas Hernandez, who filled in for him got substituted at half time at Lisbon.

  52. Michael24

    You know what they say –

    “Like father, like son”

    What a load of jackass bullshit.

    “Victory through harmony” what the fuck is he on about?

    Victory through committment.
    Victory through effort.
    Victory through desire.
    Victory through belief.
    Victory through trust.
    Victory through intelligence.
    Victory through leadership.

    Now that’s far more relevant.

    Ah well, who cares what Josh says, at least we have a manager in place who can deliver all of these essential components.

    Over to you Arsene!!!!!

  53. alexanderhenry

    I think that’s it for arsenal in the Europa.
    In a final we would have had a chance against athletico, but over two legs I just don’t see it.

    As soon as we get knocked out, everyone in the press and punditry will switch to wenger in, wenger out mode.

    The club will respond with silence or standard gazidis style, non committal gobbledegook.

    This will drag on until the end of season boring everyone to tears and driving arsenal fans insane with frustration.

    What a great time to be an arsenal fan

  54. Dissenter

    Akilan
    Thanks for the correction
    I have to admit that I haven’t seen Atletico play that mush this season
    They aren’t the team they used to be though since they are playing in the Europa like us. They would have qualified out of that CL group 2-3 seasons ago.

  55. Dissenter

    I don’t think it’s a foregone conclusion that Atletico will beat us.
    We have the capacity to go on a run that can “rescue the season”.
    It’s just THREE massive performances that’s required but the manager has to decide to forget about 6th place and start to fully rest key players for the Europa league.

    That means he has to start playing peripheral players. I doubt Wenger will do this because he’s just 1-2 losses away from talk of another crises.
    He’s a walking carcass at the moment. The vultures aren’t just circling, they are already snipping away at his flesh.
    Wenger looks like a tired and clueless old man, which really is what the club stands for now; stale, devoid of new ideas and impervious to sentiments of the fans.

  56. Dissenter

    Danny Welbeck has won two consecutive games so it’s right to start to wrap him in some cotton wool.
    Is he the player in the form of his life?

  57. Pierre

    No premier-league title race
    No fight for the top 4

    Sky sports have turned to relegation issues and the race for the championship (2nd division) to stimulate interest.

    BT still have great interest in Europe to promote.. Liverpool and Arsenal may go all the way.

    The title race must be more competitive next season. The past few games have shown that city are vulnerable and can be beaten so hopefully we will see a real fight for the title.
    Can’t see Arsenal being a serious contender unless we sort the midfield out.. Our attacking options are looking pretty good… Aubameyang, mkhitarayan, özil and lacazette seem to have a good chemistry together plus Welbeck and if iwobi and Nelson can push on and realise their potential then we are looking good going forward… I would probably add Ramsey to the attacking options (if he stays) as he obviously isn’t a CM (sorry but he’s not) so play him where he is most effective, supporting the strikers.

    We need to buy 2 quality CM.. Jack (unless he is carrying an injury) looks a liability and will probably leave and that leaves xhaka and Elneny so 2 CM is a must plus at least one quality defender.

    Wenger will probably stay so what will actually happen is
    Jack will sign the contract and stay.

    He will persist with Ramsey in centre midfield.(sorry he’s not a CM)

    Central defence will remain an issue as we will have no midfield protection.

    The supporters will remain apathetic due to lack of change.

  58. loyika

    Bamford will always go with his “its all on Wenger” narrative whenever Stan’s name is mentioned in the mix. Don’t expect him to change now.

    With AM its a 40/60% chance. They are not as great as we are making them look. (if they were they would not have dropped out of the UCL)

    The main issues we have is our shoddy defence, but attack wise we can match them. (and with Costa probably out, better them)

    Eitherways, bring it on. To paraphrase Dolph in Rocky – “If he (the team) dies he dies!!”

  59. James wood

    phD07
    Re Spurs – Man City.
    Strange the game has not been re scheduled
    Fans on the juice all day and the problem of away fans getting home.?
    Especially after the Man City coach incident.
    I would imagine City would like to get this done but I am going for a
    Spurs 2-1win.
    Really surprised Auguero did not play midweek he must be crocked.
    And he might have been more potent.

  60. Hi Berry

    Michael 24:

    Victoria Concordia Crescit……..it’s on the badge, or used to be anyway when tradition counted for something.

    Apologies if you already knew this.

  61. Michael24

    Was listening to Perry Groves yesterday morning on the radio harping on about Arsenal and the fans disrespectful attitudes towards Arsene Wenger.

    Now we all know that the red haired ‘Ginga’ is a cult hero, not a great footballer, but a genuine cult hero.

    His book – We all live in a Perry Groves world – made excellent reading. We all got a copy when we renewed our memberships several years back. Do you all remember?

    The thing is, we all know that PG, like so many others, has had the luxury of being entwined in the social and financial perks package that has become a key part of AFC over the years.

    His allegiance, rightly or wrongly, is based on never over stepping the mark with his opinions and feelings towards the club and Arsene Wenger in particular, fighting off those who feel the need to criticize Wenger and his methods.

    Just like the vast majority of the media bigwigs who have been wined and dined over the years, he feels a loyalty to Wenger because of all his considerable fringe benefits.

    Wenger will always have the luxury of having this support team around him but, at the end of the day, it shows that there are many out there who put their own selfish needs and financial gain above all else, or should I be saying, above that of the clubs.

    Good luck to Perry, if that’s the way he wants to lead his life, who am I to argue.

    No doubt he has a clear conscience, just as the many other so called Gooners have in respect to their so called allegiance and commitment to the club.

    Kudos to Perry and the gang.

  62. alexanderhenry

    Hi Berry

    ‘victory grows through harmony ‘.

    Yes, it is in fact the arsenal motto and not one of the most inspiring.

  63. Dissenter

    Wenger needs to save the club by walking away. His presence is exactly is dividing our fan base now.
    Take for example, Jack Wilshere. We need someone to make an unimpassioned decision about him. We all know that person not be Wenger.
    At the last minute, Arsenal will fold at Wenger’s strident insistence, We will up the offer on the table and Jack will stay…only to break down next season again.

    He’s not the player that was promised when he was 17 years old. He’s been reduced by the repeated injuries to a clumsy and un-athletic midfielder.

    We can’t go into ne t season with our midfield in the same shape, somethjng has to give.

    Let Wilshere go and bring in a Cazorla like player like Jean Michel Seri.

  64. alexanderhenry

    Dissenter

    I’d be pretty shocked if we got through.
    It’s the way we’ve been playing lately. There appears to be no shape to the side at all.

    We do pose a threat going forward, albeit it in a shambolic, panicky sort of way.
    But the midfield has no steel in it all. None of are midfielders seem willing or capable of defending. Also there’s no genuine width apart from bellerin who I’d rather didn’t play.

    Finally the defence is weak. A combination of old age and inexperience.

    Athletico I assume are still very solid at the back. They are definitely very experienced. I just don’t see them messing it up… You never know though.