Test failed, what next?

by .

Well, we dreamed for a few weeks, didn’t we?

Our hopeful bid for top three came crashing down like the career of an MJ wedding singer… deep down, just like with the man in the mirror, we all knew something wasn’t right.

We’ve picked up 2 away wins in 12 games. Huddersfield and Blackpool. We haven’t kept an away clean sheet all season, and we’re the only team carrying that record. This is a giant hangover from the Wenger era and it’s very difficult to work out what to do about it.

Emery certainly didn’t help himself with his team selection. When you’re struggling on the road, starting Mo Elneny and Matteo G at the base of midfield isn’t inspiring or confidence building. He also opted to play Mikhi and Ozil together, something that’s rarely a sure thing. Hard to critique rotation when we’ve seen the impact of doing it badly, but that starting 11 was saw dust on toast levels of tasty.

Nothing really clicked. There was no intensity to our play, we looked very short on ideas and we really struggled with their aggressive pressing which held up all game. One of my pals mentioned that we lacked athleticism, hard to disagree. We simply didn’t look like a force out there, and more worrying, Everton knew we’d be like that.

The only goal of the game was a hodgepodge of calamities. Mustafi let Jagielka take a run on him from a long throw, the exSheffield United defender nodded the ball into the box, it bounced off Sokratis, Mustafi forgot Jagielka was behind him and the loose tap-in was never in doubt.

Emery changed things up in the second half immediately, bringing on Rambo and Auba… losing Kola and Elneny. At kickoff the Welshman mouthed, ‘play it forward, play it forward’, clearly noting the lack of a shot on target in the opening 45.

The second half did see an improvement moving forward, but we fell to pieces in midfield and at the back, allowing Everton to box us in, with no real answers. Thankfully it was just Everton, on another day, they’d have made more out of their 23 attempts on goal.

As for us… it’s hard to know where to look. We go from some truly encouraging performances, and big game wins… to abject, listless poverty football.

Is it the preparation?

Is it a motivation issue?

Is the away form like a festering fungal infection that can only truly be addressed when we have a massive clear out? Those players shouldn’t be struggling with the intensity of Everton. This problem is not technical, it’s all in the mind. It’s obviously disappointing that Emery has managed to make such huge strides for the big games, but can’t suss out a plan for middling teams away from home. Both are essentially problems borne of the same factors, seems odd that as we solve one, we drop off somewhere else.

Part of that might come down to pure experience. Matteo is a talented young player, but to expect him to boss a game next to Elneny is ambitious. Next year though… well, it could be different.

I think we saw again what we’ll miss with Aaron. He might be ill-disciplined at times, but he is an engine of football zest. He’s always pushing the game forward and he seemed to be the only player with any spark yesterday. Replacing him goes far beyond his running stats, we need to find a heartbeat and a big footballing personality.

The manager gambled on resting big players,  clearly in the name of preservation. I’m not sure I buy that it was about prioritizing the Europa League (though we might have to now). Laurent, Ramsey and Xhaka were all concerns and the manager rightly erred on the side of caution. However, I do think everyone looked at the lineup and knew we were in trouble.

Now we have a real uphill battle. Everton are the easiest of our away games, we have a rejuvenated Leicester, plus giant killers Wolves and Watford to deal with.

We also have to play a tough quarter-final against Napoli this week. No doubt the game with be high intensity and we’ll need to keep a clean sheet. That won’t happen with Mustafi in the side. The walking mistake seems to have ramped up his desire to give Arsenal fans heart palpitations at least 4 times a gameg. Sokratis also didn’t help himself picking up a two-gamet ban right at the wrong time.

It’s quite incredible how rollercoaster this season has been. It could still be absolutely epic… but it could also end up looking just as miserable as the year before.

… but at least it’ll be interesting.

Onwards and upwards!

376 Responses to “Test failed, what next?”

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  1. Dissenter

    Our set-up is a disgrace right now
    Our only meaningful box-to-box central midfielder is on his way out and there is no one in the squad currently that can deputize for him.
    How did we get to this point?

  2. MidwestGun

    How did we get to this point?
    My opinion is bad upper management which used to be Gazidis and Wenger and now the current crew… which is hard to tell who is in charge of what… and we still searching for DOF . And a chaotic transition which resulted in us increasing our payroll but not our talent level .. and a lack of spending in the proper areas for many years.

  3. Guns of SF

    We offered Rambo a contact and he stalled on it. We pulled it. Guess it was not enough $$ for his liking

    Anyhow, hopefully we can make top 4, used the $ and get a quality b2b

  4. Samesong


    As your in the states what the current mood over the Nipsey Hustle shooting? If you know about it?

  5. Charlie George

    We agree Dissenter on something.
    We are in a total mess.

    The club should be imploring Ramsey to stay
    By Whatever means necessary

    How do you replace the goals he scored?
    The energy he exhibits?
    The Midas Touch he possesses ?

    We have so many areas where we need to upgrade the team …
    Why are we doing this self-harm- with regards to Ramsey…

    What with more Emery next year/more potential Europa and the introduction of that abomination VAR..

    What youngsters are going to be attending Arsenal matches in the future ?

  6. Dissenter

    It was gang related it seems
    Someone in his crew took him out over a personal issue that wasn’t sanctioned by the hierarchy.
    TRhey caught the bugger quickly because of CCTV and the gand ratted him out.
    The killing led to a truce among all them douchebag gang members in LA

  7. Dissenter

    That ship has sailed, the horses have left the stable and wont be coming back home.
    Ramsey is gone.
    I am glad he’s been a professional until the very end. I do hope we make the final of the Europa league and Ramsey gets to lift that trophy in Baku 🙂

  8. Charlie George

    Guns of sf.

    “”””We offered Rambo a contact and he stalled on it. We pulled it. Guess it was not enough $$ for his liking””””

    That is called a negotiation.
    And we negotiated negligently.

    We lose a top player for nothing
    How much to fund his replacement?

    Why do fans – defend the indefensible…
    It was shocking from Arsenal to pull his contract. The worst decision- Arsenal have ever made in their illustrious history.

    Is this Arsenals new negotiation strategy.?
    How are we ever going to sell a player for profit- if we act so ineptly.

  9. Graham62

    Omg, there is something that I will agree with both GoH and CG on.

    Who the fudge, in their right mind, would make Mesut Ozil captain of a professional football team? (Any football team for that matter).

    Does he inspire? Does he lead by example? Does he motivate and encourage? Does he show true leadership qualities? Does he think of others before himself? Does he wear the badge with honour and pride? Does he truly give a shite?

    Of course the answer to each and everyone of these questions is a clear and definite NO. So why then would you even consider making him captain of your team?

    This in itself concerns me, because what Emery is showing, by doing this, is a total disregard to us as fans. Putting Ozil as Captain is like saying ” ok I cocked things up but let’s get everyone on board, especially Mesut, and show the world I can be nice”

    Getting Ozil playing consistently is all well and good, but making him captain was the wrong decision Mr Emery. It makes me squirm sitting, as I am, on the fence and significantly makes me question your credentials when it comes to leading the club forward.

    A mindblowingly( yeh, I know, one of my favourite words) decision.

  10. bennydevito


    VAR will be great and is a very long time coming.

    It will eradicate the abysmal officiating and can’t come quick enough in my opinion.

  11. MidwestGun

    The worst decision- Arsenal have ever made in their illustrious history.
    Nope worst decision is to not buy any outfield players other then Elneny in an entire summer transfer window. Or to bring in Kimmy K in a January window when we needed a striker and we had a real chance to win the League in second place.. And there are countless others much worse.

  12. Un battle angel

    Jamie you bell end

    I get 12 days and free long haul flights if I spend £120k per year on it.
    I’ll eat that up. I’ll at least double that. And when I do I’ll be posting from my free beach holdiay at whatever destination I decide on directly to you. Every single day. I can’t wait; counting the days….

  13. Charlie George

    Mid west
    We got 29 mill for him.

    We are getting £0 for Ramsey.

    It is the worst decision in the history of the club. ( Ramsey contract withdrawal).

    Get used to more Elnenys ..

  14. Emiratesstroller

    I have refrained from commenting on yesterday’s result until now.

    However, when I saw the team selection I was not frankly surprised with the

    The idea of playing Guendouzi, Elneny, Ozil and Mkhitaryan hardly inspired me with confidence. Elneny is a one paced backward and square passing player. Guendouzi for all his energy makes a lot of mistakes, Mkhitaryan was a makeweight player who has had a couple of decent games, but is not top class
    and Ozil does not enjoy this type of game.

    We know also the limitations of our defence. I repeat what I have said for several months Arsenal need to prioritise replacements of at least two players
    for next season in this department. The backline is just not good enough.

    However, my main concern is that the Manager continues to make poor team
    selections for away games.

    We need to play a diamond formation in midfield with both Aubameyang and Lacazette playing not just in home games but away as well.

    Effectively Everton had only Lacazette to worry about in first half of game and
    that is plain daft.

    Unless Arsenal improve their away form we are going to miss out on Top 4 finish.

  15. Dissenter

    “We got 29 mill for him….We are getting £0 for Ramsey.’

    Charlie George has a point there
    However the mistake was committed by letting him go beyond the Summer transfer deadline without selling him off.
    Not extending his deal was a lesser error- it all depends on what he was asking for. No one knows for sure whether Ramsey was just leading them on all along.

  16. Dissenter

    Not selling Sanchez for 50-60 million to city was a bigger error than the Ramsey one.

    City has the deal ready, player had accepted it and had gone as far as flying a medical team to Santiago Chile to do the medicals

    …until Wenger changes his mind and put up a silly stipulation that he wouldn’t be sold until a replacement was found.
    Then we made the fantastical 92 million offer to sign Lemar from Monaco knowing fully well that there was no time for such a big deal to come to fruition.

  17. Guns of Hackney

    Arsenal’s worst decision was probably to move from Highbury. In the context of what has happened since, one can draw a straight line from when we stopped being a football club and became a ‘business’.

    Leaving Highbury was more symbolic than I think we realised. A beautiful old stadia with decades of history to a soulless glass pit.

    Forget players. They come and go…but to leave a stadium is massive and even worse when one doesn’t build from the increased millions that it brings in.

    Arsenal are pathetic and quite frankly are getting their just deserts.

  18. MidwestGun

    Anytime anyone uses hyperbole … this is the greatest whatever in the history … you pretty much know it’s not true… especially when that person uses hyperbole on the regular.. It’s like when Trump said he has gotten more done in his first term in the history of any president or when Charlie George said Wenger was the greatest talent finder in the history of the world. I pretty much immediately discount anything after that even if their point has a small amount of truth it ruins the point.

  19. Jamie


    Just keep telling yourself that reading Daily Mail articles about another country is basically as good as going there and seeing it for yourself.

    You can keep your cardboard cutout Amex card and its make-believe points to fool your dimwitted pals down the pub. They’ll probably wonder why you’re still cruising around in your shitty white van though. Have fun in Blackpool this summer, mate.

  20. Dissenter

    “Arsenal’s worst decision was probably to move from Highbury. In the context of what has happened since, one can draw a straight line from when we stopped being a football club and became a ‘business’.

    That’s like saying mankind would be better off had the wheel not being invented.
    It’s not everyday you say something to rival Charlie George

  21. Un battle angel


    We have credit accounts but if we pay for goods and materials with Amex then pay it off on receipt of payment from clients within 51 days then what’s the difference? Except I get great rewards with American Express. Is there a downside to this I’m not getting?

  22. MidwestGun


    I don’t know… maybe he got tired of all the combative stuff.. although he does enjoy it. Always good to take a break now and again. Otherwise you just start getting stuck in a vicious cycle. I had to do the same with Keyser back in the day… it got to be silly and I kind of liked the old crazy geezer.

  23. Un battle angel

    Jamie you bellend.

    Wipe the pink hair dye out of your eyes and read my comment. I’m going to be terrorising you from my free holdiay next year boy. Every day. Like clockwork. Belee DAT!!!

    We haven’t decided on what spa and which destination. But when we do I’ll be sure to post a link to the resort.

  24. Dissenter

    Graham 62

    The mistake was mine

    It had to be Guns of Hackney, I guess his brain is on a hackney license

  25. Graham62

    “Moving from Highbury is essential if we want to compete with the big boys”

    A quote from you know who.

    In 2006 we were competing consistently. Infact, we were #2 in Europe.

    Unfortunately, it all went tits up and we all know why.

  26. Guns of SF


    We pulled the deal because Rambo was stalling on it. my guess is that we gave him a deadline and they kept waffling, as his agent shopped him around.
    Certainly not the best way to stay at Arsenal- and surely a lack of good faith

    Well, it is that it is.

    I for one, think that he has been a stellar pro, knowing he is out the door very soon. Perhaps the love and support is what is driving him? He broke his leg for us- didnt jump out of that tackle with the neanderthal and became a fan favorite for a little bit. He was lucky to stay on, past the entire British core thingy

    Maybe he just wants new pastures

    If he can help us get CL, he will have my blessings always

  27. Samesong

    I fear that Koz and Mustafi will not take us over the line. They both need leaders playing next to them and Koz is not a leader.

    Can we afford anymore slips ups??

  28. TheBayingMob

    To be entirely honest, if we are shitting ourselves about Leicester, Wolves and Watford away, what good is the Top4/CL anyway? We will get it handed to us; I mean I get the Spurs/United/Chelsea banter, and I get the money, but in a sporting context, it’s a joke …

  29. Charlie George

    Guns of Sf

    Emery pulled the contract for the sole reason- he wanted different players.
    ( Spanish journeyman) .

    It was nothing to do with finance. Or wages

    We sanctioned:

    Elneny/Lichstiener/Monreal contracts. ( so it cant be money)

    Emery In his job interview with Gazidas – stated that Ramsey and Ozil were going to be pivotal in his team building plans.

    He lied.

    And rightly – it will cost him his job.
    It certainly cost him the goodwill of some of the fanbase ( me)

  30. Dissenter

    “Elneny/Lichstiener/Monreal contracts. ( so it cant be money)Emery In his job interview with Gazidas – stated that Ramsey and Ozil were going to be pivotal in his team building plans.He lied.”

    You’re lurching again
    Have you considered that maybe that decision was taken above the manager’s head, like it ought to be.

  31. bennydevito

    Charlie GeorgeApril 8, 2019    18:48:24

    Guns of Sf

    Emery pulled the contract for the sole reason- he wanted different players.
    ( Spanish journeyman) .

    It was nothing to do with finance. Or wages

    We sanctioned:

    Elneny/Lichstiener/Monreal contracts. ( so it cant be money)

    Emery In his job interview with Gazidas – stated that Ramsey and Ozil were going to be pivotal in his team building plans.

    He lied.

    And rightly – it will cost him his job.
    It certainly cost him the goodwill of some of the fanbase ( me)


    Total bollocks.

    It wasn’t Emery who pulled the contract, it was the management above him – contracts are above his paygrade. We’ve gone over this time and time and time again.

    And again.

    And again.

    He didn’t lie about Ozil and Ramsey; Ozil became unreliable, not training very well, not pulling his weight, pulling sickies and getting backache from too much Fortnite. When he did play he was anonymous and didn’t want to put a shift in.

    Ramsey had a spell out injured, once he recovered he was back in the team as is evidenced now.

    What Spanish journeyman did Emery sign? None. Suarez doesn’t count as he’s too young and was only a loan and has barely played contrary to your predictions, and don’t forget it was Sven and Raul in charge of signings, not Emery.

    We’ve been over this again and again.

    And again.

    And again.

    And again.

    But you seem to deliberately ignore this again and again.

    And again.

    And again.

    The only one lying here is you.


    And again.

    Get banned.

    Come back.

    And more of the same lies.


    And again.

    You’re bringing Wenger’s groundhog days back to LeGrove with bells on.


    And again.

  32. Guns of SF


    Our financials this year are piss poor. Look at the last transfer window.
    We have been doomed by mega contracts for shit players.
    Ozil realization I think really hit home after the new team began to realize how hampered we are.
    If Rambo didnt find his proposed raise adequate, then I think the team did what was best for Arsenal FC

    Perhaps Rambo wants a new challenge… ever considered that?

    Its his last big payday and his agent milked Juve for $$

    more power to him. Now its a matter of ridding Ozil and his 3-4 good player p/w contract…

  33. Pierre

    “You’re lurching again
    Have you considered that maybe that decision was taken above the manager’s head, like it ought to be.”

    Dissenter, you have already been correctly outed earlier as a complete hypocrite and now you are going into the realms of jackanory to defend your” Lord “Emery.

  34. rollen

    Un r u recording ‘Idiot abroad’?

    U r right about credit card. We pay for all with CC and always pay the balance on time and get 1-4% cash back on everything, its also good for credit score.

  35. HillWood

    Not so long ago there was endless debate on here about how shit Ramsey is. Day after day
    Now he is deemed irreplaceable
    It’s a funny old game

  36. Un battle angel


    I’m funny but I’m no Karl pilkington. The only reason I’m bothered is the rewards. They called me and we went through turnover and bla bla and they’ve worked out what I get. So even if it’s just a 12 day at any Hilton and free flights then great. I don’t see the down side to it.

    Jamie is just bitter cos Dubai got blasted last night.

  37. Un battle angel

    They say any marriot as well, not just Hilton and loads of other spas and hotels.

    I don’t see a downside providing we pay off our materials and goods within 51 days

  38. Charlie George

    Gentleman and ladies.

    I am correct.
    You make not like it.

    Emery and Emery alone – pulled the Ramsey contract to facilitate the purchase of lesser players ( ex Seville players in particular)

    He also told fibs- at the job Arsenal interview – not the worst crime …
    But that is another truth.

    The only reason he got the Arsenal job- after all – was to improve the incumbent players- with his alleged coaching prowess.

    Not turn us into Seville lite – with too much emphasis on the Europa Cup

    Anyway up to The Kroenkes now- to upgrade us -in all areas.

    (Including the coaching department as well as playing dept.)

  39. rollen

    We don’t deserve neither CL participation or European trophy. Crap owner and management for about 10 year. Looser mentality rooted deep. Pedro and others claim our team is good. Why then there is absolutely no demand for any of our players? And if they go its for small fees? Decent players come here and quickly became worse. Young players go elsewhere and improve. Total shit show. Blame Emery lol

  40. rollen

    There is many great Hiltons worldwide. My wife works for Hilton part time mostly for travel benefits. While in London we visited most of Europe.

  41. Dissenter

    “Dissenter, you have already been correctly outed earlier”

    What are you talking about?
    I tolerated a declining Wenger before turning my back on him when his arrogance made him think he was bigger than the club.
    Emery is on a 2 year contract. No one is deifying him unlike how you and your ilk turned Wenger into a god.
    I mean your so called criticism of Wenger was limited to blaming Ramsey for Wenger’s f*ckery.

  42. Pierre

    Let me get this right

    Are you saying that Emery had nothing to do with Arsenal withdrawing Ramsey’s contract offer .

    And you believe he was being honest in saying that he wanted Ramsey to be an integral part of the team .

    you obviously seem pretty certain of these events , what I will say is that it is a very strange way to run a club if the manager wants to build a team around a certain player and the people above the manager do not support him and goes against his wishes .
    I would have thought it would be of the utmost importance to back the new manager and trust his judgement , wouldn’t you .

    Personally , I look at it differently , I believe the club did back Emery regarding Ramsey but Emery decided that after watching Ramsey struggle to conform to the his style of play he made the decision along with the people upstairs that he is not worth keeping for the salary that Ramsey wanted.

    I would put Ozil in exactly this same position ( except Ozil had already signed the contract) …
    Emery wanted both Ramsey and Ozil out of the club as he wrongly thought they would be of no use to him , he thought Saurez was a better option back in January otherwise there would have been no point in bringing him in.

    Obviously he has since changed his mind.

  43. Dissenter

    Ericksen runs down his contract and some of the biggest clubs on the planet are lining up to bid for him.
    Ozil runs down his contract and the demand is as quiet as a Crimean war graveyard.

  44. bennydevito


    Lol! He really is something else isn’t he? The utter fantasy and outright lies are astounding.

  45. Charlie George


    Did you want Emery to replace Wenger?

    And If you did not- why on earth are you backing him?
    Why of all a sudden -Have you got faith in the judgement of Gazidas and Raul?

    If they foistered upon us any manager -basically you are backing him.

    Staggering- that I seem to be the odd one out.

  46. Dissenter

    Of course Emery was damn honest about building a team around Ramsey, same as he was honest about the clubs resources in the January window.

    He came into a new club in June 2019. Surely he wouldn’t have acquired that much power without a ball being kicked to start dictating how the club manages player contracts.

    This was above Emery’s pay grade. He wasn’t Arsene Wenger who had banked two decades of goodwill and could undercut or over-rule the BoD and CEO.

    Pierre and CG, You know what you’re full of and it’s not Helium gas.

  47. rollen

    Wenger great economist cost arsenal $100s of millions in players deprecation and lost transfer fees. Remember star players in last year of their contracts is ideal situation. Blame new guy …oh wait.

  48. bennydevito


    Yes I am.

    Emery started Ramsey and Ozil at the start of the season but both picked up injuries and Ozil wasn’t performing on the pitch or in training, it’s well documented and doesn’t need going over again.

    And again

    And again.

    Once Ramsey recovered he was back in the side just like he is now and once Ozil started bucking his ideas up he too was back in the side.

    It’s indisputable.

  49. salparadisenyc

    “It was an opportunity to start Aubameyang, start Lacazette, get Ozil on the pitch, start with Ramsey – get your best players on the pitch and really have a go at Everton. I thought we missed a trick in that respect. In the end, Everton had the impetus…”

    – Ian Wright

    Think Wrighty summed it up nicely, as did E Stroller earlier. Said similar yesterday post match and some had a real crack at me before this place went full biblical.

    I find it hilarious those that ripped Wenger to shreds, give Emery the rub of the green when he pulls a shocker.

  50. Charlie George

    Well said Pierre,

    the only reason for the leftfield appointment of emery- was he stated that he was going to improve the incumbent players we have mentioned,

    If we were going down the total rebuild and spend route he would never have got near the Arsenal Job.

  51. bennydevito

    Charlie George,

    I’ve said this umpteen times but I’ll say it again anyway;

    I didn’t want Emery or Arteta and was very disappointed as I wanted Ancelotti.

    But with a new Director of Football model and not much money to spend Emery made sense, especially as he had a much better CV than Wenger had when he first joined.

    Thing is, without a massive clear out of the Wenger leftovers and serious investment in top quality talent in the mould of VVD, I don’t believe even Jesus Guardiola would be doing much better than Emery is doing right now.

    The Everton selection was due to injuries not rotation.

    Ramsey, Xhaka and Kos recovering from injuries, Torreira suspended and Aubameyang had a bug.

    But with Emery saying we need to spend big in the summer on players like Van Dyke, and being linked with quality youngsters like Wan Bissaka, Ryan Fraser, that young Bristol City player, the Leeds winger and a defender from Norwich, and with Emery saying we WILL be developing and utilizing our own academy players despite your lies of Spanish journeymen, O for one am very confident and excited about our summer transfer plans.

    Let’s see how the season ends and the summer pans out shall we?

  52. Charlie George


    emery would not have been in my first 50 picks as the replacement for Wenger.

    he was the most underwhelming choice imaginable- we were all so enthused about who was going to be our new coach/manager- and we then we landed:

    Unai Emery!

    but he is here now,
    And we need The Kroenkes to make amends at the end of the season- regardless- of how the season unravels- and give us the figurehead this club deserves.
    If we are happy with Emery- gawd help us!

  53. MidwestGun

    Btw what happened to Cesc ? Is he banned or just given up?
    I remember having a convo with him where he said he would be back this summer to discuss transfer stuff.. Real life most likely got in the way of commenting is my guess.

  54. Jamie

    Yeah yeah, Don. Gone from 4 weeks 1st class holiday every year to 12 days in a Hilton somewhere [if you load 200k debt on a credit card] in just a few hrs of scrutiny.

    Perhaps if you weren’t such a clown who has been banned from this site more than once, someone would believe you when you crow about how successful your plumbing business is. Stick to blasting immigrants, it’s all you know.

  55. Samesong

    Samesongemery would not have been in my first 50 picks as the replacement for Wenger.

    If Steve Mclaren in that 50 you’ve lost any credibility you may of had.

    I wanted Allegri but we couldn’t get him.

  56. Dissenter

    I thing Cesc Appeal quit in a huff after a heated conversation with Pedro.
    There was a mini insurrection here a while ago because Pedro came out of the closet with his Emery [-phobic] opinion.
    Pedro has a right to his opinions of course- it’s his blog but it didn’t go well some posters like Cesc [ and I ]

  57. MidwestGun

    Emery might have been underwhelming but he was basically the only one interested in the job who was even remotely qualified.. all the others said thanks but no thanks .. Look how hard it has been to signup a Dof. The extent to which the club had been run down by the previous administration continues to be underestimated even by Pedro. Pedro basically argues we should have went with a complete unknown quantity who might have been motivated to go for it.. maybe he is right but that would have been a huge gamble. He also argues we did not conduct a proper search .. probably also correct but Gazidis left us in a lurch. So best case scenario is Emery can steady the ship until we get to a better option. So far he hasn’t done terrible in that regard to be honest.. given what resources he has been given.

    Pretty much everyone but a few on here wanted Klopp or Pep when they became available .. and both had expressed some interest in Arsenal to the media.. both times the Club chose to renew Wenger’s contract instead. So here we sit.

  58. Dissenter

    I think Ramsey profited from the uncertainties in the summer as to whether Gazidis wanted to stay or leave.
    There would have been a leadership vacuum in some ways when the board were trying to work out an organized exit for Gazidis. I’m assuming that Ramsey was just leading them on and always wanted to leave to new pastures.
    I would be tempted to do something different after 10 years too, moreover when my mentor of 10 years was departing the club.

  59. Guns of SF

    Midwest nice post… some of us were happy about Emery, as the alternative was Arteta which is totally disdainful to me.

  60. Pierre

    “Once Ramsey recovered he was back in the side just like he is now and once Ozil started bucking his ideas up he too was back in the side.It’s indisputable.”

    My take on it is more logical ….he wanted both Ramsey an Ozil out of the club in January but they didn’t want to leave and that is why he marginalised them up until the Bate defeat which happened to be the 7th defeat in 14 games.

  61. bennydevito


    You call it logic, I call it Emery out agenda driven spin.

    Tomaytoes tomartoes.

    None of us have a hidden camera in the boardroom or can read Emery’s mind so you’ve got your view and I’ve got mine.

  62. Guns of SF

    Small $
    Sven leaving
    Ivan leaving
    Injuries galore
    Loan deal only in winter window- no on interested except Suarez

    fighting for 4th place still- still in EL

    Uphill all season long. Not bad if you ask me.. just take out the injuries and thats a major boost.Bell, Rob and Danny still fit? I dare say thats some additional points right there.

    As Midwest said, named coaches came and went after the Arsenal project turned them off. It was down to Arteta and Emery and im glad we have him.

  63. bennydevito


    A bit dramatic there no? We’ve got a game in hand on Chelsea and are only a point behind Spurs.

    Chelsea’s next match is away to Liverpool, Spurs have to go away to City next week after Huddersfield. Chelsea also have to go to Man utd and Man utd still have to play City.

    I think we will bounce back and beat Watford who have nothing to play for in the league and will have one eye on the FA Cup final.

    Delefeu will more than likely miss the game with an ankle injury. It won’t be easy but we have to win it and I think we will.

    I think we can still get 4th above Chelsea and Utd with Spurs having the easier fixtures finishing 3rd.

  64. bennydevito


    How is it? Allegri didn’t want the job and walked away. Who else? Vieira? Not qualified.

    Maybe we could have gone for Ancelotti who was interested but I don’t see anyone else.

    Who else was there? By all accounts it boiled down to Emery and Arteta and Emery was the best choice out of those two.

    Not sure why he was chosen over Ancelotti though, maybe it came down to the fact Emery was the only idiot willing to work with the pittance that was available.

    More fool him.

  65. WengerEagle

    It’s hard to fancy us given we’ve won 5 out of 15 away matches in the PL this season and 4 of our last 6 matches are away from home, tough trips too to Watford, Wolves and Leicester in there all well capable of upsets as we’ve seen this season.

    Still plenty of matches to play but yesterday could prove very costly as it’s going down to the wire given there’s 4 good teams scrapping for 2 spots.

  66. Charlie George

    The irony of all of this

    Its Aaron Ramsey who will decide Emery’s fate -and if he keeps his job.

    Ramsey will be pivotal in the games ahead .
    His goals and assists are the only hope for us.

    We witnessed our potency yesterday- in the first half without our Welsh maestro.

    His wonder goal against spurs- got our season back on track. Followed by a man of the match performance against Man Utd.
    Not forgetting his goal against Newcastle.

    There is no way – Emery can keep his job if we fail to reach Champions League next season.

    More Emery, Elneny and more Europa next season- would be the deathknell of Arsenal . Totally finished as a serious force in football.

  67. HighburyLegend

    “delusional to think Arteta and Emery were the only two coaches we could have hired.”

    But maybe not so delusional to think that the others are not interested by the job.

  68. WengerEagle

    Eh I think that Ancelotti has had his day as a top gaffer, I’m a believer that like a player eventually you lose certain qualities even as a non-playing professional, look at Wenger, Mourinho, Capello, Hiddink, list goes on.

    The lone exception to the rule really was Ferguson and that’s because he adapted to the environmental changes in the game and had really good people and players around him and even he went through a wobbly few years in those mid-noughties before Ronaldo and Rooney hit their stride.

    Not at all intimidated by Napoli this week, I’ll be disappointed if we fail to beat them as they’ve been there for the taking many times this season and teams have gladly obliged.

  69. Charlie George

    High leg

    You do not seem to have a constructive thought in your head.

    You seem rather gormless..
    Are you like that – when you are not posting on here?

  70. Guns of SF

    Dont forget to add to the list, Enrique as well. He was turned off by the lack of transfer funds

    Ditto Ancelloti

    Hard to see Arteta coming in and shaking anything around but the branches at the training ground

    If Emery gets us CL, many of you on here will be eating crow

    We are still in it, I get the feeling also we beat Watford

  71. MidwestGun

    I believe the short list as reported by many was Vieira, Arteta, Emery, Allegri, Low and Jardim.

    Allegri checked out pretty early though. So it wasn’t just 2 options by any means. But it wasn’t the greatest list either. The timing was pretty bad since as it turned out the person who was in charge of transition Gazidis checked out as well.

    Kind of a Cluster F of a transition, pretty much, especially since Mislintat checks out too. Plenty of blame to go around everywhere including the Kroenke’s.

  72. Words on a Blog


    Yeah, we considered lots of managers.

    But like the Technical Directors we also “considered”, most of them -barring Arteta and Emery- when they saw what we were offering them, in terms of targets and “war chests” the managers said thanks but no thanks.

  73. Words on a Blog

    The fact is, notwithstanding the attractions of London, the Premier League, and our venerable history as a club, it’s fair to say that premier managers and special sauce technical directors are not exactly beating down the door to join our club

  74. Valentin

    I would say every Arsenal bad performances without Aaron Ramsey just reinforce Juventus view that they got an elite player on their book for zero transfer fee.

  75. Luteo Guenreira

    In my opinion it should be possible to believe that Emery overall has still done well over the course of his first season, and simultaneously believe he got his selection wrong on Sunday. I don’t see why the two have to be mutually exclusive. Maybe too complicated a concept.

    Emery won’t win us a title during his tenure, probably won’t be around long enough. But to say that will be only because he wasn’t a good enough coach would probably be inaccurate. Too many factors to consider.

  76. Valentin

    If good renown people are interested in Arsenal DoF, but they keep rejecting it, then maybe there is something wrong in the job or the people who do the interview.

    If you hire Mislintat it is clearly not to go after expensive well known target. I doubt that Sevilla, or Ajax transfer budget will be greater than Arsenal. So any talk of the budget is too small being a reason why candidates rejected us can’t be true.

    Most people still consider Arsenal a dream job otherwise they would not be interested in the first place. The problem is that when we present them with the real working condition, “Do the donkey work, Have no real authority on transfers, get paid peanuts while the Spanish honcho takes all the credit for the success and blame you for the failure” makes every candidates run a mile away.

  77. Charlie George

    Red truth

    “”The reason so called top managers ducked out of a move to Arsenal was the fear of being found out working with a stringent budget.””””

    So by that rational and as a pro Emery fan -you are accepting he is not a top manager…..and he was not fussed about budgetary concerns

    He was just grateful – that we were stupid enough to offer him the job.

  78. Guns of SF

    it can also be that these top coaches want top players and know what they cost. Not some cheap ass team, trying to win the EPL and CL with finding gems.
    that is what you call a project- ala Dortmund or Ajax.

    So indeed, we can get a DOF from a club like that but not a top coach. Doesnt jibe.

  79. bennydevito


    So were we stupid at the time to hire Wenger who at the time had a vastly inferior CV to that of Emery?

  80. Valentin


    I disagree. Do you honestly believe that he had done well in view of the resources he was given?

    The main questions when judging a manager are:

    1) were the result and the quality of football the best that could be hope with this squad?
    2) did he manage his resources properly in term of team selection, rotation? Introduce youth team, Make use of loan players?
    3) did he improve players?
    4) did he had a good relationship with the most prized assets?
    5) is he respected by his players?
    6) did he had a good relationship with the other football department? Does he listen to them or does he constantly overrule them and then backtrack when he realised that he made a mess?
    7) were his proposed targets good, realistics and fit into the club philosophy/strategy?

    If you answer no to the majority of the questions, then you know that the coach is not good enough or does not fit the club. There is no shame in admitting early that the relationship is not working.

  81. Luteo Guenreira

    Honestly what is a top coach though?

    Take our same exact squad this year. Same injuries, same inconsistent players. How many “top” coaches in the world has us any closer to the title than where we are? Zidane gets this squad the championship? Pep gets this squad to a CL final? Please!

    I think fans lose sight of things, and that’s okay because it’s only because fans love the club so much. But this debate about the manager really has nothing to do with the club at this point, it’s simply agenda. What that agenda is depends on who you are.

  82. MidwestGun

    1.) Yes
    2.) Yes and No… overall yes.
    3.) Yes
    4.)If you consider Ozil are most prized asset.. very debatable then no.

    5.)Yes as far as I know.

    6.)No idea.. what Emery does behind the scenes.

    &.) No idea what his targets are for the summer. Torr and Matty G , Leno Sok.. better then what we had.. Lich nope. But also don’t know what the budget is.. makes a huge difference.

  83. bennydevito


    1 – Yes
    2 – No
    3 – Yes
    4 – Yes
    5 – Yes
    6 – Yes
    7 – no way of knowing going by the press who know nothing.

  84. Nelson

    I just watched the reply. I don’t like the tactic when we are playing away. When they have the ball in their half, our three attackers were pressing high up in their half. Our two midfielders were standing on the midfield line and our two wing backs were standing on the sideline (close to the midfield line). There was a big Gap between the midfielders and the CBs. What Everton did is that they either long ball to one of their strikers or a long pass to an attacker inside that Gap. With one pass they bypassed 5 players.
    We need to play a much more compact setup. When we lose the ball, the attackers should move back to our side and the two midfielders should stay closer to the CBs. I remember that we played like that against Chelsea. Why we suddenly play so open?

  85. Valentin


    You seem to mix confirmed successful coach with a good coach. Most coaches suffer burn out and need to reinvent themselves after a few years. Very few resists the test of time. So instead of hiring the coach who has the best CV, let’s hire the coach with the best chance of improving the club.
    If you want the coach with best CV, you would hire Mourinho, but most big clubs will not touch him with a barge pole.
    You need to define a strategy and hire a coach who can work within those parameters.

    Clearly Emery pretended during the interview process that he could work within those parameters. And oh shock horror, it is now revealed that Emery lied or at the very least did not know the team and the league as well as he let it be known. Gazidis the snake oil salesman got sold snake oil!

  86. Luteo Guenreira


    It would be very, very disappointing…but not outside the realm of expectation at the start of the season. You get caught up in the season, we get to 3rd with 7 games remaining after an empty January window and some bad luck with injuries, same inconsistent players, Spuds collapsing and you get to hoping. But objectively speaking I think most saw a CL berth as a climb considering where we’ve been the last couple years.

  87. Luteo Guenreira

    Oh Valentin addressed me. I didn’t read it. I skimmed back and looks like he put up a list of arbitrary characteristics and questions he decided determines what makes a good manager, without any context or consideration beyond what he offers in his questions. Yeah I don’t play games of stupid with stupid people. Predictable though.

  88. MidwestGun

    If you answer your questions without a preconceived opinion. then the yes outweigh the no’s sorry to tell you.. Also… I don’t think this is how you decide a manager is good to be honest. You have to determine if we are progressing.. and those questions don’t really answer that. If you aren’t progressing then you need to go a different direction.. come May.

  89. WengerEagle


    Objectively we have had a better season than last season, proof is in the hard data unless we were inexplicably to lose all 6 of our last 6 PL matches.

    It’s worth pointing out though that last season was by far AW’s worst and the club’s worst domestic season in a very long time. So the bar wasn’t exactly set sky-high to start with.

    Chronic ailments of the club in recent seasons have been domestically our lack of ability to go toe to toe in the H2H with the better sides, our away record, failure to blood any new up and coming talent or scout out any from home or abroad and our appalling defensive record, not to mention our lack of playing identity with an all too often scatter-gun approach to get by game by game on individual forward talent alone.

    Out of all of these issues with the club Emery hasn’t addressed most of them for me, we’re winning games away from home at a slightly better clip and our H2H record vs the top 6 is marginally better but we haven’t made great strides or even significant strides in any of the above really.

    He’s also had the benefit of spending 75 million and having a bedded in and settled Aubameyang and Lacazette, both which have contributed tremendously to our improved season albeit slight improvement.

    Ultimately, is Emery going to take us beyond a perennial top 4 thereabouts club is the question you have to ask? It wasn’t enough for the supporters under AW and nothing I’ve seen this season makes me too hopeful that we’re heading in an upward trajectory under this man.

  90. Luteo Guenreira

    That’s the problem with engaging with people like Valentin. He offers up a question based on his conditions, you humour him and answer, then all of a sudden before you know it you’re caught in a debate wrought with unmerited liberties and backwards logic. And since you humoured him in the first place he actually thinks he made a legitimate point. Let the Valentins and Pierres of the world talk it out amongst themselves, I say.

  91. MidwestGun

    Iwobi… better imo.
    Lacazzette better imo.
    Xhaka better imo.
    Bellerin was until injury..
    Holding was until injury.

    Off the top. And maybe the bar was low.. on all of them Idk.

  92. Luteo Guenreira


    I never thought Emery was going to be the one to take us to the next level. Emery was ultimately taking a job where he wasn’t going to “succeed” in the eyes of most fans, that is the state of Arsenal not only on their own but also in relation to other clubs in Europe.

    I honestly believe Arteta was going to be the choice, but the top brass smartened up. There is no fucking way Arteta was succeeding if he was hired. It would have ruined his prospects as a manager. I actually think they did him a favour not hiring him now, having someone like Emery come in as basically a caretaker for a few years while the club sorts itself out from top to bottom, and still allowing the man to keep his “potential” while learning from Pep. Would not be surprised for a second if he ends up the next manager in a year or two.

  93. MidwestGun

    However I don’t really disagree with anything in your last comment. My initial opinion of Emery was he is transitional manager who will last about 2 years and not get the 3rd year extension… so far my opinion on that hasn’t really changed.. Still an improvement on Wenger and basically the only real option I heard when we were hiring unless we wanted to go full on roll the dice. For awhile I thought we were gonna hire Loew.. and That was frightening.

  94. WengerEagle


    We’ve seen it so often when a marquee foreign player comes to the PL in their debut season that they can struggle, Laca in the second half of 2017/18 was excellent as well and I put it more down to an adjustment period for him than the influence of Emery.

    I’ll give you Holding and Bellerin even though they were both apart of the defence that couldn’t keep a clean sheet for no love or money, but the part of this argument I don’t like is that it doesn’t acknowledge why we were shipping so many goals at a record pace even given most supporters were praising Sokratis as being an improvement at the back, how can you laud a trio of a terrible defensive four? Was it all Leno’s fault?

    Or was Xhaka’s improvement grossly exaggerated? Or has LT been a defensive liablity?

    It can’t be none of the above.

    Iwobi is still as poor as ever, wish I could celebrate even a smidgen of improvement but I haven’t seen it.

  95. bennydevito


    All improved, some limited because of injury.

    Not bad.

  96. WengerEagle


    Yeah and look, I give Emery credit for improving our points total and having us at least well in the hunt for CL football with just 6 games to go.

    It’s hard to reconcile the feeling that this is a train that is chugging along to no real destination in kind or with a real purpose, let’s pretend that Emery gets us back in the CL this season, are we really going to part ways with him? Of course not.

    So he isn’t a caretaker gaffer by that definition.

    He’s managed at plenty of clubs in his career and never really exceeded expectations which is exactly what we need if we are to hope to compete in the future.

    Klopp has overachieved. He won back to back titles with Dortmund in the Bundesliga and took them to a CL Final. There was a precedent for overachieving before he signed on at Liverpool and overachieving he has done in Anfield. CL Final last season and has Liverpool duking it out with a freakishly overstacked superteam in Citeh that literally have two top class players for every position pushing them all the way for the league, not to mention a CL QF which will soon be a CL SF as nobody is seriously taking Porto to beat them.

    Emery has overachieved in the EL, but we have never been an EL club until very recently. And if we are to be taken seriously as an elite club ever again, we’re hell-bent on getting back to the CL.

  97. Luteo Guenreira

    Still too soon to tell. If you are judging Emery then I think he has improved the play of the team as a whole. I don’t think you can credit Emery for a bump in one player’s play, maybe the player just took it upon himself to get better. Away matches is still a large issue but maybe that will change over the next few matches, collectively team has shown more fight in my eyes, more grit. Making high quality chances and converting at a historic rate. Defense was getting better until Holding went down, which in my opinion was a huge loss.

    Any upwards trajectory isn’t solely contingent on Emery. It’s all been a set up for a chance to use this summer as a launching pad. We’ll see what kind of gas we got to cook with when the time comes, I suppose.

  98. WengerEagle

    Kola has definitely not improved, he’s been horrific defensively,

    Welbeck has just 14 apps this season, not nearly a large enough sample size.

    There’s been little to no improvement with the rest benny, come on now.

  99. WengerEagle


    I’m not sure I buy the transitory period narrative, are we simply going to say cheers Unai for weathering the storm and getting us back in the CL and kick him into touch for a better gaffer who’s available?

    We’ve never been a ruthless club and it doesn’t get much more cut-throat than that.

  100. bennydevito

    Well, well, well…

    Read it and weep Emery haters… from Twitter:

    “Unai Emery’s win percentage after 47 games stands at 61.7%

    This is higher than any of Mauricio Pochettino’s, Pep Guardiola or Jurgen Klopp’s 1st season in England

    Unai Emery: 61.7%
    Pep Guardiola: 58.9%
    Mauricio Pochettino: 50.9%
    Jurgen Klopp: 44.2%”

    How’s that for special sauce?

    Charlie George thinks Emery is awful. If he were a supporter of City, Spurs or Liverpool in their first season he would have said their managers were awful too. Just goes to show Emery should be given more time.

  101. Luteo Guenreira


    I actually think that is exactly what is going to happen. That is the main thing I’m banking on in the post-Wenger era: we will not tolerate unnecessary mediocrity for longer than needed. If Emery becomes stagnant and someone better is there, there is no reason he shouldn’t be shown the door. Emery won’t have the clueless fan base to hide behind like Wenger did.

  102. bennydevito

    And just for Charlie George, from the same source (or sauce?)

    “And finally…

    I know it is early in Unai Emery’s career but:

    Unai Emery: 61.7%
    Arsene Wenger: 57.2%

    Of course, a good win ratio is nothing if it does not lead to winning trophies”

  103. MidwestGun

    I think it depends.. on results and what we do with transfers obviously.. I f we make CL and spend cash and crash out early.. Could see us making a change. Josh Kroenke I believe is more ruthless then Daddy toupee based on what I have seen with the Rams and Nuggets. Obviously it depends on what we do rest of this season too.. we could end up 5th no CL and obviously then that changes things too.

  104. bennydevito


    Absolutely; if Emery doesn’t start seriously challenging for the title within 3 – 4 seasons or get CL qualification within 2 then he should be shown the door no question.

  105. WengerEagle

    Kind of a disingenuous stat there considering that Poch was at Southampton when he came to the PL who are a far inferior side to us.

    And Pep was playing in the CL that season as opposed to the EL.

  106. WengerEagle

    Longer than necessary- how do you define that LG? Everyone holds that to a different standard.

    I don’t rate Emery’s past recruitment too highly and we all know that we’re not really going anywhere with this group of players minus one of our best/better ones in Ramsey.

    We can’t affords to piss many more years away while our rivals capitalise, I mean even Spurs have narrowed the gap to the point that in recent seasons they’ve overtaken us, even have a bigger stadium than we do now.

    We haven’t the luxury to give it 2-3 seasons under Emery only to turn around and conclude that he is indeed a manager with a lower ceiling.

  107. WengerEagle


    If we do make the CL, how many players do you see Emery going out and getting? Let’s be honest, more often than not you get what you pay for and UE hasn’t pulled off too many transfer coups in his time as a gaffer.

    Not that I don’t like Leno or Sokratis butt hese are not guys that are going to take us to the next level or even have the potential to.

    At least LT and possibly Guendouzi have the potential too although I think that the latter is definitely overrated by our supporters.

    And more worryingly, what happens if we don’t make the top 4 and the coffers are bare? Has to be chalked up as a mostly wasted season then really considering we haven’t blooded any young talent like Dortmund did last season for example.

  108. MidwestGun

    Well it also depends on what the 5 – 10 year plan is.. is it trying to break into that top 2 EPL barrier or maintaining 3-6th place. This is why Pedro has been harping on a DOF with a vision along with a backroom staff that works well. It’s not easy to find a young fresh manager that can come in and be successful without any support. Future is pretty muddled right now.. but making CL is part of the puzzle. So if we fail on that .. pretty sure Emery will be gone quickly and I’m pretty sure we could not afford a season we were gonna finish midtable.. the AKB’s would have freaked the Fuck out. So that’s why they weren’t gonna gamble on an Arteta or Vieira because the fans weren’t gonna allow a season where we finish 8th or 9th no matter what they say… complete rebuilding isn’t really an option.

  109. Pedro

    Benny, to add to WE, Klopp took over a much worse team as well and didn’t get a summer or any money to fix the team.

  110. Luteo Guenreira


    I agree with everything you said regarding our not having the luxury. I don’t really have an exact measurement but if we miss out on CL this year and suffer through a mediocre first half season in the fall, it’s either time to make a change around winter or to start making plans to find the next manager the following summer.

    Again, I don’t like hard deadlines like that and it’ll be a constant reassessment considering contemporaneous factors but that’s the kind of trajectory that I don’t think is too unreasonable.

  111. Sid

    We are shitting ourselves appointing a DOF but apparent the line was a mile long when we were looking for a coach…..yes that makes perfect sense, afterall we are in fooking London and have a trippy stadium.


    And rightly – it will cost him his job.
    It certainly cost him the goodwill of some of the fanbase ( me)

    Good thing no one gives a shit about you, so we are all good.



    But they had a philosophy, no?

  112. bennydevito


    No way did Klopp take over a much worse team, a team that nearly won the league the season before bar a Slippy G comedy gold moment, a team that had Milner, Gomez, Lovren, Lalana, Coutinho, Firmino & Sturridge in it.

    Emery has come in and taken over the worst Arsenal team since George Graham was sacked with no premier league or English football experience and can barely speak the language.

    Emery deserves credit in my opinion.

  113. The Royal Arsehole

    Average to above above average players at best. I am impressed with what Emery has done with the very very little he has to work with. You would have told me this squad would be in third with seven to play, everyone would have laughed you out the pub. We are just wasting our breath until the club matures enough for Kronke to get the return on his initial investment. No care for the sport, club, or trophies in this man what so ever.