Arsenal reward backroom team with promotions – and Emery with transfer budget?

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Thanksgiving is nearly here and I am thankful that The Guardian has made its 1,000,000 subscribers and truly hope they keep telling me over and over and over and over again. Subscription by a thousand cuts. Just give me the Barney Ronay content and be done with it.

Jokes aside, the backend of the American year is great. I have 2.5 days off work to be thankful, and it perfectly coincides with the thankfulness I have that the bastard international break is coming to an end.

If you wanted something serious to sink your teeth into, the excellent Inside World Football talks up the horror show going on over at FIFA. The story documents how Infantino is gutting FIFA to consolidate power and sell out the World Cup.

All would be funnelled through the specially created ‘FIFA Digital Corporation’ of which FIFA would hold a nominal 51%. Infantino would be installed as chairman of the company, arguably a more influential and powerful position in world football than president of FIFA, and certainly more lucrative personally than the annual $2 million plus bonus he has been receiving.

By removing all of FIFA’s commercial rights from its own sales and marketing teams it would be a further emaciation of a world governing body whose president in just two years has removed the head of every major department, shredded the budgets and operational capability of everything from development to medical, and has removed any form of independence in its governance and ethics process, turning them into a blunt tool for his own political requirements.

The power struggle in football is grim. It’s like watching two of your favourite dictators slugging it out. Kind of interesting because of the vulgarity of it all, but ultimately, once all is said and done, something grim will emerge. Either a more corrupt and unaccountable FIFA, which is quite hard to imagine. Or a Super League, that seems to read less realistic by the day as clubs come to terms with the fan backlash and the sight of pound notes swimming down the river to another sport less tarnished… like drunk curling.

Personally, I find FIFA increasingly less and less relevant. I think clubs should take back control and restart the whole damn thing. That’s an aggressive viewpoint that negates all the good the organisation does around the world. But then again, El Chapo was loved by the people, so was Pablo Escobar. For me, FIFA doesn’t share footballing values. It’s in the pocket of horrible regimes and corrupt old men. It’s overseeing the building of a World Cup under slave labour conditions. It encourages opaqueness and backhanders. A nasty inaccountable group of people that always seems to dodge justice.

How can club football continue to be complicit in its existence? That’s a big question right there, and I expect you to answer it in the comments section.

There are some snippets doing the rounds about another Arsenal restructure. Huss Fahmy is taking over the old role of Raul Sanhelli, so he’ll be the Head of Football Operations. I’m not quite sure how that one works out, I mean, wasn’t he the contracts man over at Sky? Isn’t the role he’s taking on quite specialist? I mean, I guess we have to trust that Raul knows what the fuck he’s doing.

I’d imagine he’s still going to be deeply involved in moving the club forward. Football Operations can mean many things and if you’re a proper outfit, you hire the specialists below you and make sure you’re advancing whatever your agenda is. It’s probably quite an undertaking to make the financial side of the club work. How do you structure kids contracts? How do we set bands for the first team? How do we make the club work for the best and those trying to become the best? How do we remunerate staff so they’re not pinched? How do we build credibility with agents and CEOs at other clubs? How do we gain a powerful voice with Super League? How do we strong-arm the referee unions to stop being biased against us?

There’s also a promotion for Sven M. He’s taking in the role of technical director. Again, I don’t know what this is. Maybe they’re all dividing up Ivan’s monster salary between them and using the titles as justification for doing so. Who knows, but I like that we’re building out the backroom team. I hope that they aren’t entrenching power. I hope there’s still someone holding everyone accountable for success. Last thing we need is a new regime that becomes fat and blunted because it’s living in a world of comfort.

Arsenal are apparently chasing Pepe for the January transfer window. It’s hard to know what’s real and fake with these stories because papers just want to make the hits happen in international break. I’d normally brush aside the story, but The Times is running the story, and you feel the club might be willing to gamble on the signing because Emery has started far better than anyone had imagined.

Tell me if you see it… but he has that beautiful tight control of Kanu, but at pace.

FOOTBALL IS COMING PEOPLE, clear your Sunday… x

135 Responses to “Arsenal reward backroom team with promotions – and Emery with transfer budget?”

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  1. Marc

    Really didn’t think it was possible for FIFA to get worse after Slack Bladder got the bullet.

    Just goes to show you what being positive does for you!

  2. Moray

    I hope there’s some governance going on in the backrooms of Arsenal. It looks a bit like more money for the boys, as you mentioned, Pedro. With an absentee landlord as an owner, his gormless son kicking around and no defined CEO, I hope someone is accountable. Though to be fair it couldn’t be much worse back there than when Gazidis was swanning around.

  3. Marc


    Precisely what has the new management setup done that hasn’t been a positive move so far? You also need to remember that the absentee landlord and his gormless son are the guy’s who have brought them in.

    Some people just have to look for the negative in everything.

  4. jwl

    Drunk curling is the best – my partner and I go to her dad’s rink a few times a winter and play curling with old boys and get quite drunk. Curling is awesome sport because men and women, young and old, can compete against one another while drinking lots of beer.

  5. Pierre

    Pepe…you can’t beat a good drag back imo and he seems to have it down to a fine art….I like him.

    The question that needs to be asked though is


    We don’t want him wasting all his energy showing us his skills and artistry when he could be using most of it chasing back to his own by line or maybe even closing down the keeper or the full backs….

  6. Rich

    We need a right winger, Iwobi and Aubameyang are better cutting in on the left.
    Dembele would be a good investment even at £90mill, don’t see Stan authorising that type of outlay though, and if he did? It would definitely come at a cost of not strengthening at centre half and left back

  7. Bamford10


    While I agree that Emery’s 4-5-1 requires the wide players to drop too deep (and perhaps defend too much) when we don’t have the ball, you never answered my question re City, Chelsea or Liverpool: what do these teams ask of their attacking / creative players when they are not in possession of the ball? Do they not ask these players to press, harry and defend (where appropriate)? I think they do. Please explain how and why Emery’s approach is so different from Guardiola’s, Klopp’s or Sarri’s, in your opinion.

  8. Bamford10

    £90m on Dembele would be a terrible investment. We need 4-5 good new players in the XI to compete with the best teams, not one. £90m on a single wide player would likely exhaust our transfer budget and would only improve us marginally. Terrible idea.

  9. TR7

    I don’t understand this obsession of people with ‘tracking back’. Attacking players should have complete freedom to express themselves. I want my winger to beat opponents with dribble and score goals. For me 6 players – four defenders and two central midfielders should worry about defending , 4 attacking players should be given complete freedom.

  10. Bamford10


    I think you missed Pierre’s “point”. Pierre thinks Emery is holding our attacking / creative players back by asking them to do much work when we are out of possession. Pierre was being sarcastic; he was suggesting that Emery will waste a player like Pepe by asking him to expend his energy tracking back, defending.

  11. Ddkingz

    Hello grovers….

    The BIGGEST miss of the new era would be to bid for Pepe and still don’t get him or loose him to another club….

    I mean this guy is absolutely fantastic….

    Great with the ball…
    Can hold up play…
    Crazy dribbling abilities and very strong..
    Has great pace….
    The guy tracks back like mad….
    Very good on one on one dribbling, or even one vs two dribbling….

    My only issue, which is not really an issue is that he has to increase his goals output…..

    I’d pick him over zaha any day anytime….

  12. Bamford10


    One, Pierre is the only one here who is obsessed with this idea that attacking players need to “track back”. This is a straw-man of his. Everyone else simply thinks that, Messi or Ronaldo aside, players should work hard without the ball, should help to press, should help to win the ball back where necessary. Pierre, on the other hand, is trying to argue that the demands Emery (and others) are making on Ozil and others are reducing their productivity.

    Two, you’re certainly entitled to your view that four players should be free from defensive responsibilities, but I would simply point out that this is not the approach adopted by most of the best teams today. I’d say three players is the most a manager today will allow to be free of defensive responsibilities while in their own half, and I would point to Liverpool and PSG’s 4-3-3’s as examples of this.

    For better or worse, this isn’t Emery’s approach at the moment.

  13. Ddkingz

    Let’s just put it dis way…..

    Pepe is the total package to describe a player Emery would love to have in his books…
    Like I said….
    The guy has Emery to burn both offensively and defensively….

    I love the way he puts his body on the line and how he uses his body when dribbling…

    Someone wrote about how many of his goals were penalties….

    I just laughed, when I watched his highlights, and learnt how he managed to win those penalties himself….

    He knows how to commit players, even in the opponents box… Which would be a added bonus for us ( considering lacazette needs to be shot in the head with a pistol before we can be awarded a penalty)

  14. Graham62

    What a coup if we get Pepe.

    A beast of a player with genuine afterburners.

    If this goes through, top 4 may be possible.

    I suppose it’s a case of watch this space.

  15. Ddkingz

    Sorry to say….

    Stop mentioning ozil on le-fucking-grove….

    Ozil is good but not the best…. He’s not a complete footballer… Just one of the last generation of players who produce only moments of magic….

    I’d prefer a kdbruyne or a silva… These are players who dominate the the game, they boss the midfield in every match and they also have the moment of magic in them…. Complete players…

    Just hope ESR can learn a great deal from everyone around him and strive to be a better complete player….

    ESR also said de bruyne was his best player….

  16. TR7

    Well the so called best teams of current era are no match for the great teams in the past. Most of the players are robotic in their play and most of the managers are risk-averse and unimaginative.

    As for Pepe, I really have not seen much of him but something about him looks off to me in this video. Lack of balance and poise if this video is anything to go by.

  17. Pierre

    Pressing is good (as a team) …individually no.

    For me , it’s all of nothing…atm we are somewhere in between .

  18. Ddkingz

    @ receeding h..

    Also hope so… He might have his limitations, which is normal for everyone, but if he knows how to do his tricks reaally well, then we are in for a great buy….

    The guy is fucking 23yrs old… And has a lot of room to learn…

    Arsenal might be his first big club… And he will be willing to learn from the best players and staffs alike…

    Can’t imagine a good Pepe and a wonderful reiss nelson on both flanks… And a joyful ozil ( if he can just be the ozil we all want)…
    #great time to be a gooner…..

  19. Pierre

    “Pierre was being sarcastic; he was suggesting that Emery will waste a player like Pepe by asking him to expend his energy tracking back, defending.”

    The dig was more at le grove as many on here seem preoccupied with what our creative players do going back instead of going forward…

  20. Marko

    £90m on Dembele would be a terrible investment

    Significant lack of quality in our starting 11 and signing someone like him would at least address some of that lack of quality irrespective of how much he costs. We’re never going to bridge the gap between potential title challengers to legitimate title winners without quality players. I get it about the price but it shouldn’t dissuade us all the same

  21. Marko

    The dig was more at le grove as many on here seem preoccupied with what our creative players do going back instead of going forward…

    More about effort overall Pierre. It’s not just a case of Ozil not tracking back but more about his overall effort and does he really want to be a footballer anymore because he’s not playing like he does

  22. Pedro

    Ozil just doesn’t give a fuck, it’s pretty simple.

    He’s a dated #10. Incredibly talented, but I don’t think he has it in him to be consistent these days.

  23. TR7

    Ozil was a liabilty even under Wenger who allowed him to express himself. But it’s Mikhi who is struggling with defensive duties imposed on him by Emery. Play Mikhi through the middle in a free role and he can be absolutely amazing.

  24. Pierre

    Yes, ozil is struggling to influence games and adapt to what Emery is doing this season but ,I’m sure the stats will show sooner or later, his work rate will be closer to the top 20% than the bottom 20%.

    Anyway ,wasn’t talking just about ozil as Mhkitaryan and Aubamayang are also playing below their potential and Emery needs to find a system/formation that will get the best out of them.

  25. Pierre

    Spot on regarding playing Mhkitaryan through the middle .

    What I can’t understand is why the manager has failed to recognise that Aubamayang and Mhkitaryan have a fantastic chemistry on the pitch yet he plays one on the left and the other on the right ….surely it is time to bring them closer together on the pitch and see if they can rediscover their telepathic understanding.

  26. Bamford10


    I don’t really get your Dembele comment. Obviously, we need more quality in the XI, and obviously Dembele would be a good player to add to our XI. However, we need to add 4-5 quality players to the XI and Dembele would cost us £80m. If we had £320m – £400m to spend on transfers, yeah, I too would be down for spending £80m on Dembele. But we don’t. So I’m not really sure I see the logic in spending our entire transfer budget on a single wide player. Signing him on a loan? Yeah, that might make sense. Signing him for £80? No, I don’t see how that makes sense, unless we have a lot more money to spend than anyone thinks we do. I think it would be smarter to go for more Torreira-like signings, i.e., quality players who can be had for a bit less. Thus Nicolas Pepe seems a smarter signing to me than Dembele does.

  27. TR7


    Laca has always been my first choice striker and ideally he should continue playing as the lone striker but I agree with you that left wing is not quite the right position for PEA. As an experiment, I would like to see PEA playing a few games either on the right or even as a center forward for that matter. Laca is equipped enough to adjust to left wing position.

  28. Cesc Appeal

    The Fornals links are encouraging because I hope it means we’re dumping Ozil. There’s a limit to what this side can do if we persist with Ozil.

    He drops a great performance at a rate of about 1 in 10 games against he right opposition, he might have a couple of decent showings but then the rest he is just anonymous and means we’re playing with 10 men and a dysfunctional press.

    He is the Walcott of CAMs.

  29. Cesc Appeal


    No. It’s more hope than anything else.

    I said from the moment he signed that deal it was the worst thing the club had done since the Wenger deal.

    He’s such a pussy though and I honestly think he cares so little about competition and playing we could bench him. If the rumours about us getting some commercial benefit from him, there you go. League Cup and FA Cup games, as long as they aren’t away from home, and substitute roles.

    If Ozil is a long term starter we might as well jack it in now and settle for UCL qualification at best.

    There’s a reason no top team would touch him. Fossil in modern football and quite fitting to describe him as something long dead and decayed given the way he performs.

  30. Pedro

    Struggling to see how he brings £350k a week in commercial value. He’s offered next to nothing for 3 years, Germany has fallen out of love with him, his stunk out our team and we’re a EL team now.

    Hope the new boys can put some pressure on him to leave… and then we take some chances on precocious youth talent from around the globe. I’d love us to be Dortmund on steroids.

  31. Wenker-wanger

    @ Pedro… You seem to be of the brexit attitude in yr justified damnation of FIFA.
    Nothing wrong with that…IMO.
    For those failing to see the analogy… FIFA’s corrupt and controlling tentacles are well-known and despised…Pedro was advocating clubs take back control.

  32. Paulinho

    Pedro – Some posters think celebrities wishing him happy birthday on instagram is a sign of his immense marketing value to us. Yeah, I was left scratching my head on that one as well.

  33. Cesc Appeal


    I’m not saying break even but at least put a dent in those ridiculous wages.

    Even if it is minimal we’re still better off just absorbing those losses and getting someone better in. By the time have to renew Fornals’ or Havertz’s deal, for example, and put them on big money if they’ve performed he could be on his way out anyway.

    When you think he’s turned up for 1 game this year, the wasted wages on him. Millions and millions already.

  34. Cesc Appeal

    If we managed to get Pepe for £27 Million and Fornals for £18 Million in January that would be pretty great business, you have to say.

    Likely eating in our summer budget but well worth it. We could have Nelson returning from what will hopefully be a successful Hoffenheim campaign in the summer as well to add to that.

    Grab a CB and LB in the summer and we’re in business.

  35. Pierre

    Back to knocking ozil i see…

    As someone has to defend him and I am not saying he has played well this season ….YET, but if you look at the last 2 times he was substituted(v palace and wolves) , the team fell apart offensively and defensively.

    ozil goes off and we have no composure on the ball , no patience with the ball , panic football.

    Wolves ripped us to pieces in the last 20 minutes at the Emirates , we resigned ourselves to hitting aimless crosses into the box and consequently losing control of the game …the shape of the team was non existent and we could/should have conceded at least 3 goals ,probably more.

    Was it because the manager took off our one player with composure ,experience,
    patience and intelligence who understands the need for keeping possession of the football when you are chasing the game or, as in the palace game, protecting a one goal lead……who knows if ozil would have made a difference.

    As for him not giving a toss …why would be looked so pissed off when he is substituted if he wasn’t bothered.

  36. Ddkingz

    What’s with the fucking logic of Emery to try and find a way of playing mkhi and auba closer to each other or play them in the same starting XI….

    If they aren’t up to standard they should be binned off along with ramsey…. Or just bin of mkhi and find a way of getting the best out of auba…

  37. Ddkingz

    There’s a proverb saying…. Not all that glitters is GOLD….

    We have two world class strikers but we don’t play a formation that can accommodate two strikers up top…
    If we were to play a 433 formation, auba can’t still play the RWF/LWF of the attack…

    This is a really serious problem for any club, even for arsenal who have a lot of players who are not good enough and are played out of positions…
    If the coach deems it worthy to offload any of the strikers, along with the players who don’t have a role to play with his plan ( which is to make arsenal not just a title contender but a title winning club), he should sell them all off…. And bring quality player to elevate our beloved arsenal to the status it belongs….

  38. Pierre

    Dd Kingz
    “What’s with the fucking logic of Emery to try and find a way of playing mkhi and auba closer to each other or play them in the same starting XI….”

    Yeah ,that’s a difficult one to work out ….playing 2 players who previously had a brilliant understanding of eachothers game and created and scored goals for logic in that is there.

  39. Freddie Ljungberg

    No mention of Lord Bendtner getting a month in the slammer? What’s up with him and taxis anyway?

    Links to Julian Weigl today, not getting much playing time at BvB after they brought in Witsel. Would at least put an end to the endless Xhaka discussions.
    Can’t see us paying anywhere close to the mooted 68m though, maybe half that.

    Him and Pepe in January would be nice.

  40. Ddkingz

    For those of you gooners, who behave like helpless babies, crying and moaning over laca and auba.. who should start or who is better, or saying the coach should be held accountable for the lack of chemistry, or play two up top… Only the coach can decide that, and if having two top class forward, so many CM andCAM in the team, makes the team unbalanced, then he should offload those who are surplus to requirements and buy the needed players to take us to the next level…

    We might decide to continue trying all soughts of formation just to accommodate auba, laca, ramsey, mkhi, iwobi and co. and we might end up regretting it because we might have wasted a season or two doing so…. Without actually achieving what we really want…. Fantasy/sexy football, titles and our status among the elite of all elite clubs

  41. Marc


    “Likely eating in our summer budget but well worth it”

    Well that’s always the big question, if getting those players turned 5th into 4th then it wouldn’t be far off being revenue neutral and would make recruitment in the summer easier.

    It’s all about the calculated gamble not something you’d ever put too much faith in Wenger over but with the current recruitment team I’m happy to back their plays.

  42. Ddkingz

    Sorry Pierre… No offense
    But if Emery decides to keep trying out getting the best chemistry to suit all his players at the expense of getting good quality players and winning titles, in the next few seasons, then he would be the one at the wrong end of the sword…..

    As I’ve always said, 90% of players have no loyalty for the clubs/managers they play for… As far as there is a better package/pay elsewhere they know they can get they don’t really care…. Sack the current manager and replace him, they will take a dig at their former boss just to suck the new boss cock…

    I don’t really care about Emery, but I support him as long as he will deliver the major trophies to the empty Emirates cabinet…. I don’t really care how he does it, if he decides to stick with his current players and continues changing formations like how some guys change their girlfriends, that’s for him to decide…. If he decides to splash the all the cash available at his disposal, that’s also his decision to make…

    All I care about is arsenal playing good sexy football and deliver major trophies to the beloved fanbase because the that’s the only things they can offer to we the fans because they all get payed for their jobs, and we all pay good money and spend quality time to watch them all year long….

    My only problem to a successful arsenal is to not see mourinho in the dugout winning the trophies for us… Emery and every other manager should try to make arsenal great one more time……

  43. Cesc Appeal


    I agree.

    If you added in Fornals to take the CAM role and Pepe to play as a winger I would be much more confident of landing 4th.

    Not to mention the fact they would be combined fees of £45 Million which is pretty great in this market when you think we would have got Leno, Guendouzi, Torreira, Fornals and Pepe for less than the price of Fred and Mahrez.

    Especially when you hear Venkatesham saying the last 2 years have cost us ‘tens of millions’.

  44. Marc


    “All I care about is arsenal playing good sexy football and deliver major trophies to the beloved fanbase ”

    Does that include the London cunts you were slagging off the other day – you know the people (and the others who live a little further out) that actually go to matches?

  45. Marc


    I still maintain that the 3rd and 4th spots won’t be as clear cut as it seems. Chelsea are looking good at the moment but still lack a top striker, ManU have been better recently but no one would be surprised if they had another meltdown or 3 or 4 between now and the end of the season, the Spud’s stadium situation wouldn’t make it onto a comedy sketch and their finances are fucked (probably an under statement). Arsenal we’ve seen some good and some bad but I think we have a decent chance of doing it. A little bit of SAS magic in Jan could really set things in stone.

  46. Ddkingz

    Why do you always brain fart…
    Sorry to say, but you are a useless brain farting cunt…

    Like I asked you before…. With you really answering the question… But I hope you do answer it now, so all on le-grove will know how clueless a waste a sitting space in the upper tier both bank you are….

    As a brainless farting c**t, who goes to the Emirates to watch matches and occupy an empty seat on the upper tier of the north bank, do you consider yourself more of a gooner than every other arsenal fan worldwide????

    My answer::::
    No, you are just another brainless cunt, who is privileged to live in London and where you can afford to watch arsenal matches live at the Emirates…

    Why your answer to the question above….. You clueless irritating brain farting bruised old slagging cunt…

    Make sure you answer that question…

  47. Marko

    As for him not giving a toss …why would be looked so pissed off when he is substituted if he wasn’t bothered.

    Embarrassment? People are finally catching on to his act and his response to being substituted and criticized is what exactly? Not exactly playing like he cares anymore certainly couldn’t give two shits about Arsenal that’s for sure. Also don’t think it goes unnoticed the way you try to make it about how the manager is utilising him and how he’s playing poorly with what Emery is demanding from him. These questions about Ozil’s commitment and desire has been around for a couple years now at least.

  48. Ddkingz

    Does that include the London cunts you were slagging off the other day – you know the people (and the others who live a little further out) that actually go to matches?…..


    What’s the meaning of the term there…that actually go to matches….

    I never read that….
    You seem to have the thought that only the Londoner and those who go to matchdays that have a say about arsenal….

    For the record…. Arsenal as a football club is not owned by the Londoners, or those who goes to matches… Even the owner Stan kroenke doesn’t/hardly attend matches and he has the final say on what happens at arsenal and doesn’t know if you exist or go to matches or do you attend arsenal matches for free????

    No you pay to watch matches… You gutless cunt of a season ticket holder.

  49. Marko

    It’s all about the calculated gamble not something you’d ever put too much faith in Wenger over but with the current recruitment team I’m happy to back their plays

    Thought this was an interesting thing to say. Think I saw Raul say something recently about calculated gambles and risk assessment in the transfer market. Basically implying they’re always looking at the market and possibilities that arise. Which is refreshing to see after so many years under you know who

  50. Marko

    I would also imagine that they’re calculating the risk of bringing forward transfer targets and funds to this January and whether it will help us to get back into the champions league or not. I’d imagine if we were sitting mid table with half a dozen defeats instead of 5th on a 15 game undefeated streak it’d probably mean a different January. At least I’m hoping because we’ve got a chance at top 4 but we certainly need recruitments to help us get there

  51. Marc


    You are the worst type of ret*rd. Spend all your time mouthing off when you know nothing and mean nothing.

    The fans that attend matches are more important than other fans all over the world – without them there wouldn’t be a club. You fucking cunt.

    You still haven’t answered my question of the other day – where the fuck are you from?

  52. Marc


    Agree about looking at our performances and record so far. The next few matches could make a huge difference in what we decide to do in Jan.

  53. Marko

    Would like to point out that we’re not getting Dembele. For one he’s actually playing. Malcom is much more likely because there was interest before and he’s barely playing.

  54. Marc

    Just had a thought

    Is Ddkingz Peanuts? You’d hope there aren’t 2 such useless ignorant pieces of filth on the planet but you never know.

  55. Marc


    Strangely the biggest issue we could see is fan expectation – not of us doing well but expecting “name” signings. Sven’s best work is the “we’ve signed who” who then goes on to be a great player. Something Wenger was great at in the day.

  56. Ddkingz

    So you said, without your farty brain sitting on the upper tier of the north bank…. There won’t be a club…

    So what will it be???

    I think you and your brainless group of old slagging cunt should push for a revolution to change the name from AFC to arsenal football of only match going fans (afomgf) or maybe arsenal football for Londoners (affl)…

    I think you would love that…

  57. Marc


    No I welcome anyone who enjoys watching Arsenal or contributes to a conversation on here, what they don’t have the right to do is tell supporters who go to matches how to support the club.

    My objection is worthless, irrelevant cunts who slag off those who turn up week in week out and were doing it being you even knew what being a useless meant.

  58. Ddkingz

    I don’t really understand how you feel about yourself been able to attend matches at the Emirates… You think you own ARSENAL for been ever present at the north bank… No you don’t, you are just like everyone else on le-grove and the arsenal community worldwide….

    Like I said, you are just an opportunist who manages to live around london and attend matches. Nothing more and nothing less. Just a fan like everyone else WORLDWIDE…

    So stop bitching about supporters who go to matchdays week in week out, and contribute something meaningful on le-fucking-grove….
    You old brain farting, whinging season ticket holder…

  59. Marko

    Strangely the biggest issue we could see is fan expectation – not of us doing well but expecting “name” signings. Sven’s best work is the “we’ve signed who” who then goes on to be a great player. Something Wenger was great at in the day.

    To be fair only really Guendouzi and Mavropanos were totally out of the blue type signings Leno has been linked before and Torreira might not have been a household name but he was linked with Juve while at Sampdoria. The thing is there will come expectations now because his signings by and large have been quite good imo.

  60. Marko

    Weigl would be an excellent signing. Was linked to City two summers back could still end up there or possibly PSG to replace Rabiot. Would be a coup

  61. Emiratesstroller

    FIFA is an ongoing scandal, but sadly beyond the influence of either FA or EPL.

    However, of greater concern should be the shenanigans at the PFA. The Telegraph published yesterday a forensic about the way it is run and growing number of ex and current players seeking removal of Taylor who a la Wenger has been running organisation more than 30+ years and earns a staggering salary of £2.2 million pa [incl £770K bonus]

    Apparently the PFA has accumulated a pot of £55 Million. Yet it paid out just
    £100,000 on dementia research and around £500,000 on assistance for ex
    players with such problems.

    300 current and ex players have signed a letter seeking Taylor’s removal from job.

  62. Emiratesstroller


    A lot of speculation about transfers in press.

    Personally I would be surprised if Arsenal bring in more than one new player in January.

    Somehow I don’t see Arsenal bringing in now defence replacements. This will
    be probably left until June.

    Personally we do need more urgently replacements in midfield and up front.
    Ramsey is clearly on the way out and that is reflected in his current form.

    Also Elneny is a “nothing” player. He has not played a single minute in EPL and
    is no longer sitting even on bench. He needs to be offloaded as soon as possible. Effectively we are reliant on 3 players to play in “engine room”.

    The loss of Welbeck leaves us short up front. I think that Arsenal should replace him with goalscoring winger. Personally I would bring back Reiss Nelson and see how he performs in EPL.

  63. Dark Hei


    I would think that a new LB is more urgent than a new CM.

    It is easy to upgrade on a fat Kolasinac and an old-injured Monreal.

    But CM? I think not.

    You WILL struggle to get even someone better than Guendozi in January.

  64. Emiratesstroller

    Dark Hei

    LB would have been a priority some weeks ago.

    However, the injury to Welbeck has highlighted potential shortcomings in squad elsewhere.

    Emery has built his team around a midfield engine room of Torreira and Xhaka. Guendouzi comes in as a bench replacement. However, if one of these three were to get injured there is no other option.

    Elneny is a one paced DM who is completely unsuited to play in an Emery
    team. He has not played a single minute sofar in EPL.

    Ramsey is leaving the club and his performance level has also dropped. So my
    guess is that Arsenal will attempt to bring in someone in January hence the
    rumours about Weigl.

    Left back is one position in starting eleven which does need upgrade, but the fact is we have got Monreal [once fit], Kolasinac and Maitland-Niles who can
    play the position.

  65. Ray in LA

    Bone to pick with you Pedro. “Corrupt Old Men”: On behalf of old men may I say that old and corrupt are not synonymous — the average age of the 10 most corrupt world leaders was under-40 when they came to power. Hitler, Stalin, Idi Amin and Lay [Enron] were all mid-40’s when they came to power.

    If they were corrupt when old, they had been practicing since a much earlier age which is how they came to power 🙂

    Don’t have a good word to say about Infantino or Blatter or any of the other corrupt FIFA officials, but using old as a slur is beneath your usual sensibilities

  66. Ddkingz


    Please stop classifying AMN as a makeshift LB….

    If we want the guy to progress, and if he also wants himself to progress, then he should better learn his trade as CM or DM or a box to box midfielder..

  67. Graham62

    Marc and Ddkings

    Why so aggressive?

    My perceptions are slightly different.

    Just because you are a season ticket holder, which I was once, who attends on a regular basis, doesn’t make you a better supporter than those who support from afar.

    Infact, imo, it is slightly ignorant of those who have kept their ST’s these past ten years to assume they are some form of superior race when, during this period, Arsenal were ground into the dust by a regime who didn’t give a toss about you or anyone else with an allegiance to the club.

    Sitting and accepting the status quo may be seen as supporting the club by some, but the reality is you only succeeded in feeding an individual’s hunger for his own selfish gain. By feeding the beast you deprived the team of progress, which we now all see.

    ALL fans are important, even those who have never attended games, but those who arrogantly assume(Marc)that, without them, the club wouldn’t exist, are fudging deluded. Many thousands of supporters gave up on their ST’s long ago when they could take the “obvious” no longer, whilst millions of others only dream about attending games.

    Well done to those of you who sat through it all. Give yourself a pat on the back for supporting the “lads”,but please remember that those of us who walked away from this committment did so out of respect, that’s right, respect for the club and, most significantly, because we couldn’t tolerate the boredom any longer.

    New manager, new philosophies, new era. Now everything is positive, or at least it would be if those fans that twiddled their thumbs for so long, gloating in their so called allegiance to the team, understood what they were infact doing.

    Onwards and upwards.

  68. Emiratesstroller


    I am not classifying Maitland-Niles as a makeshift left back.

    At the moment he is in reality a “utility” player, but sofar as I am aware most of his games played for first team have been either at left or right back.

    As I wrote in previous posts there are probably three or four positions in starting eleven which need upgrade e.g. left back, centre back and wing, but not
    necessarily before the summer transfer window when you are more likely to
    recruit players you need and want and more importantly we have the necessary funds available in next financial year.

  69. Emiratesstroller

    Graham 62

    Maitland-Niles is a talented young player, but I don’t think that he is currently
    a shoe in starting eleven player.

    He is of course good and versatile enough to be included in the squad. More
    importantly his wage scale for that status is at the right level.

  70. HighburyLegend

    The link of Marko contains pretty much the same read than the link of Left T.

    “Old man smell perhaps?” lol

  71. Ray in LA

    I read Marco’s link but not Left T’s before expressing gratitude…and yes, in essence the same material

    methinks the smell comes from what was previously swept under the carpets?

  72. Marko

    I did not see up top that someone had already left a link to the same interview. In saying that my one’s better because it’s headline reads like Emery had to open the windows to get rid of the stench of Wenger. Metaphorically speaking of course. Can’t rule out realistically speaking either

  73. Jamie

    The walls were lined with the stench of mediocrity.

    So, Bournemouth on Sunday. Eddie Howe isn’t sexy, but he really seems to be a clued-up young manager. He always has them punching above their weight. He deserves a shot at a bigger club to see if he can motivate hyper-inflated egos.

    Our suggested line-up against them?

  74. useroz

    Would prefer Havantz to Fornals purely on youtube clips. Appears much more dynamic, agile/pacy, with better shooting, and well, taller. Probably more expensive too.

    Pepe looks ok on the clips though not the wow type (like havantz).

  75. Guns of Hackney

    Let me break this down for you, son…

    1. Does anyone honestly care about the football government? Seriously. No, seriously!

    2. What in the holy hell has anyone at arsenal done to get either a) payrise b) promotion? Sure, we’re doing okay in relation to the nuclear bomb that was Arsene’s last decade but sheesh…Emery and the boyzz have done fuck all yet.

    3. Youtube to scout a player.

  76. HighburyLegend

    @GoH : I get your point of view, but if you are expecting great achievements this season, you will probably be disappointed…

  77. S Asoa

    Le Grove posts became so interesting with Pedro dropping with his comments like the proletariat. The constant oneupmanship last few days was getting on my nerves .
    Wish you get hitched soon so will be seen consistently like this Pedro

  78. Guns of Hackney


    I wasn’t expecting anything from this season…I am mildly surprised were not bottom. However, I do not see exactly what anyone has done to justify a payrise and or, promotion.

    We’re in this absolute mess because Arsene was handing out multi season/multi million contracts like water…it would be total folly for Arsenal to start this bullshit again.

    I’m all for people getting rewards, but it should be earned and no one at arsenal has earned anything yet.

  79. Graham62

    Sky just been showing replay of 2012 Capital One Cup QF against Bradford City.

    Ah the memories.

    Onwards and upwards.

  80. gambon

    I quite like what Raul & Vinai Venkatesham had to say in their big interview. Its clear they are ambitious, and they said a lot more than Ivan ever did in 9 years.

    They also said the Kroenkes will be more engaged now they fully own the club, which was my guess.

    The only thing that worries me is that they said Emery, during the interview process, said he can improve this group of players.

    I personally dont believe that, and worry that Emery told the board what they wanted to hear, ie that they could get top 4 without changing too many players.

    I think that things have gotten so bad in recent years, that we clearly have the 6th best group of players in the PL. The biggest key to getting top 4 is a better group of players.

  81. gambon

    “Sky just been showing replay of 2012 Capital One Cup QF against Bradford City.”

    Wenger scouted Hazard but then decided £11m Gervinho was better value.

    Only Wenger could do that.

  82. raptora

    True but we can see that the directors/manager team is not afraid of adding quality players – Torreira, Guendouzi; or letting players go that don’t fit the manager’s ideas – Ramsey, probably Elneny. It leads me to believe that they are willing to change the players that they don’t like.

    On the other subject – I think that Emery is already helping a lot of the players to up their game – Bellerin, Mustafi, Iwobi, Laca, Cech to name a few.

    I bet that the people with power have eyes. Like they said, now the power is in the hands of 4-5 people. Not one. I bet that they are talking about the problems in the team just like we are, not being happy with this position or a player, seeing progress in this or that area, spotting the problems, thinking for a way of fixing them and discussing the possible solutions.

    There is communication now. Many pairs of eyes are busy making their best for Arsenal FC to succeed. I think that the club have set a great foundation for a good future. Now it’s up to them to make it work.

  83. Marko

    I get it gambon but I don’t think Emery is like previous manager and adverse to squad changes. For one thing there’s the subs then there’s not offering Ramsey and Welbeck and Wilshere new deals and there’s the perennial links to obvious Emery targets like Banega. I’ve got no doubt that he sees we have to get in better players and I’ve no doubt Sven sees the same thing. It’s about convincing the other guys to back them imo

  84. Graham62

    As far as progressive decision making is concerned, Emery has done more for Arsenal in six months than Wenger did in six years.

    Onwards and upwards.

  85. gambon


    You have to hope so. I think pulling the Ramsey offer is a great sign, shows that the club are making hard decisions, ones that Wenger used to hide from.

    From what they said, you can see that the first phase of the plan is to get back into the top 4.

  86. Graham62

    If only we had had someone at the helm who put the club first, ahead of his own selfish ego.

    Just imagine where we would have been.

  87. Leedsgunner

    Probably nothing in it, and just clickbait but multiple sources reporting that Arsenal is in for Dembele again from Barcelona.

    Had we sold Alexis for £60m to Man City summer before last and Ramsey for £40m to Liverpool in the summer just gone… it could have been possible. Not now.

    Wenger’s habitual dithering and indecisiveness literally cost this club hundreds of millions of pounds… not even taking into account the passing over of superb players like Van Dijk and Hazard. when we were heavily heavily link with them.

  88. Bamford10

    Barring injury or a number of dreadful performances, I don’t see Emery dropping Ozil or Xhaka from the XI. So let’s say we add Pepe, Fornals and a LB in January, does that new and improved squad finish fourth and above Spurs? Or are Spurs the better bet for fourth? How big of a set-back would not finishing fourth be, IYO?

  89. Marc


    I still think the Spud’s have some issues. They didn’t strengthen in the summer, if rumours are to be believed they are drastically short of money with the stadium debacle and I’m not sure that the Poch isn’t beginning to think about moving on.

    I have no idea if we’ll add 3 players but do expect at least one. The rest of it will come down to who keeps it together between now and the end of the season.

  90. MadeToLoveMagic

    The Guardian is a neo-con, war-mongering, centrist, neo-liberal propaganda rag
    with no interest in the working class (especially since Katherine Viner became editor). Stop giving them your money, Pedro. It’s like paying to have your brain rotted daily.

  91. Pierre

    “, I don’t see Emery dropping Ozil or Xhaka from the XI. ”

    Not if he has any sense after seeing the farcial way the team played v wolves in the last 20 minutes after he took ozil off and took xhaka out of central midfield and put him at left back.

    I’m sure Emery has looked back at that game and learnt his lesson and hopefully realises that when you are chasing the game in the latter stages ,possession of the ball which gives you control of the game is crucial .

    Another example recently where we lost control of the game in the latter stages was the palace game , ozil was taken off in the last 25 minutes and xhaka was not in central midfield and was playing at left back …… Coincidence ?

    Of course, many will hold a different opinion to me but keeping Possession of the football is a skill/art that is underrated by many..

  92. Marko

    Ozil gives us control now? Suppose the assists have dried up and so have the chances created. The question then becomes what’s after control of the game? What will Pierre come up with next?

  93. Graham62


    Re: “habitual dithering”.

    Don’t get me started on VVD.

    A ten year old could see he was a class act back in 2013 but no, not our wise leader.

  94. azed

    “Another example recently where we lost control of the game in the latter stages was the palace game , ozil was taken off in the last 25 minutes and xhaka was not in central midfield and was playing at left back …… Coincidence ?”

    We did beat Fulham without Ozil and played better than we did against Wolves and Palace. Coincidence?

  95. Globalgunner

    Wenger likes a challenge. Buying a talented young player with all the right attributes is for simpletons. Arsene prefers to buy unknown klutz, Bring them in, offer no instruction, and let them find their way or flounder. That is what a genius will do.

  96. Graham62

    Phrase of the day – “The habitual ditherer”.

    Another point, when Ozil was taken off after 75 mins against Wolves, we were 1-0 down…….. Coincidence?

    We all know that relying on Ozil to stand up and consistently control a game is equivalent to Southern Rail delivering a professional service. It will never happen.

  97. Cesc Appeal

    ‘Southern Rail’

    Two words that just ignite an absolute rage in me.

    One of the worst organisations I’ve ever seen. If anyone behaved the way they do in the delivery of most any other service they would have gone out of business.

  98. Goobergooner

    Hahaha Cesc, Graham.
    As an Aussie a bit ignorant to what southern rail is, but what has got you both so stirred up about them?

  99. Graham62


    Private rail company operating in the South East, providing main rail link services to London and surrounding areas, run by a bunch of incompetent fools who should have been taken to the gallows long ago.

    Anyone that has the pleasure(!!) of commuting on a daily basis between the south coast and London has my utmost sympathy. If this company were operating in Honduras, the CEO and board of directors would all be dead by now.

    The government are also to blame.

    We are too tolerant of crap in this country.

  100. Goobergooner

    And a genuine question to anyone willing to answer; what is the best way you guys get your full dose of European football, without having paid memberships to all the sports channels?
    As a uni student and also working I don’t have as much time as I used to at school to watch heaps of full matches.
    So many of you here are aware of up and coming talent and the underrated players throughout the continent, I’d like to get a bit more into football outside of just staying up late and watching the Arsenal and most EPL extended highlights.
    Highlights and or blogs/news would be extremely appreciated!!!