Liverpool and Spurs shame our owners ambition (Long Read)

by & filed under News Review.

To make a bad weekend even worse, tragic news just dropped the Jose Antonio Reyes passed away after a car accident. A tragic loss of a young life. He was one of the most exciting ‘out of the blue’ signing from way back when and certainly an unsung hero of our invincibles era. Thoughts are prayers of everyone at Le Grove are with his family right now.

Onto football.

I took a pretty big swipe at our ailing manager yesterday, and many people felt I should focus more of my energy at the family running the show.

So let’s talk about what running a club with vision and purpose looks like. What better place to look than Spurs and Liverpool? (I know, it hurts so bad)

5 years ago, Arsenal had just finished the season in 3rd place. Spurs and Liverpool had finished 5th and 6th respectively. Neither team had broken 60 goals.

Arsenal were ahead of the game. We had built our stadium, we had better players, and we were still enjoying our superb run of Champions League football.

So what happened? As we wrote extensively at the time. The Kroenke family were happy to watch their fortune grow because they are real estate people. Sadly, they didn’t pay attention to the reality of what was going on pitch side. They couldn’t recognise the decline in the football, they didn’t understand what the influx of money was going to do to the competition in the league, and they only paid attention to the standard health metrics of the business… namely, that all financials were ticking upwards.

That said, here’s where so many fans get things brutally wrong. They’re not bloodsuckers. They have invested ample funds in Arsenal. We have had exactly the same chance at greatness as the rest of the teams around us. The single biggest failure of Arsenal was to keep Wenger on way beyond his sell-by date, the second biggest failure was on Ivan Gazidis for his cuck like behavior in not at the very least building an elite team around him. The third was the missed opportunities. Sign Sven Mislintat and Jurgen Klopp 5 years ago when we could have, we’re talking about a different Arsenal. We could have had Pep Guardiola. The list goes on.

Ivan didn’t have a real football vision for the club. He had some really nice platitudes that he’d parrot at the AGMs, but there was zero know-how for delivering his substanceless proclamations that we’d become like Bayern Munich (‘be like them’ isn’t really a vision).

No vision, no philosophy, no structure, and a bad manager was a recipe for criminal wastage… not just that, we had a placid fanbase that didn’t understand the damage their father like manager was doing (even now, people still talk about him like he’s an absent dad and it’s f*cking creepy).

Spurs and Liverpool didn’t have the same issues. They both embarked on a similar plan of attack. They hired in two managers that boasted vision, coaching skills, outrageous charisma, and absolute belief in the project they were taking on. A manager is step one, it’s always the simplest way to impact a club. Know what you want to do, then find people with the energy to deliver it.

Spurs wanted to bring through young players and coach them to elite levels. They wanted a core of British players that loved playing with each other and felt deep affinity to the manager and club (Arsene > Project Youth). They had a good crop of kids that blended in with very smart buys from around the globe. The football might not always be that technical, but the work ethic is a sight to behold. Their players are more than the sum of their parts, they are an uncompromising beast of a team.

Liverpool, it was simple, they wanted to play heavy metal football. Klopp made great strides in season one and slowly built players around his exciting vision. Power, pace, flair, aggression and warlike mentality from everyone was the absolute standard. No one has more fire than the manager, he’s someone they all love, and he loves them back.

Also, the fans knew what was coming, they bought into the energy and they saw actual progress on the pitch.

Both managers galvanised the fanbase.

‘But, but, but…’

The money, right? Stan K doesn’t invest, he’s a leech, he’s going to bring us down…

Not quite my friends. The Kroenke’s biggest weakness now is the one that’s going to sting them very badly moving forward. They didn’t take the time to understand what was going on at shop level. My guess is they haven’t wanted to be bothered because they’re making magic with The Rams. They don’t really get football, they’d like to succeed, but they’ve entrusted average people with the fortunes of the club, which was fine when elite average could get your top 4 every year, now the bar has shifted.

Arsenal has a net spend of €288m over the past 5 seasons. We’ve dropped almost €500m on players.

Liverpool, a team everyone calls cheque book these days, has a net spend over 5 years of… €204m! €84m less than Arsenal! Their outlay over 5 years is €710m, but 50% of that has come in the last two seasons because… the vision they implemented started reaping financial rewards!

Spurs success, as much as it pains me, is even more staggering. Their net spend sits at €42m over 5 years. Think about that, we’re out here crying that poor old Emery only had €83m to spend last summer! Spurs total player expenditure over a 5 year period has been €328m. (Numbers sources from Transfermarkt)

Wages paints an even starker picture. Liverpool has spent £990m on player wages (Swiss Ramble sourced) over 5 years, with Arsenal right up behind them having dropped a STAGGERING £975m. Spurs, a team in the Champions League final, having just built a new stadium, have spent £576m!

Let me put this into a harsher light… Spurs wage bill is actually £18m lower than ours was FIVE YEARS AGO.

Our weak leadership has consistently thrown their hands up and said we can’t compete because of money. As you all know, we’ve been saying that’s a loser mindset. The best thinkers always find a way to at least get themselves into the mixer. Atleti, Dortmund, Ajax to name but a few.

Luckily for Arsenal, all is not lost.

I have very little faith that current leadership is going to fix this mess. The vision for the club is meek at best, I don’t understand the action plan, and there’s no timeline against it. The shift we made this year is at least there’s now a loose idea of how a football club should be run, the problem is I’m not sure we have the expertise to deliver, even to the ‘proud’ part of it.

We’re going to feel the brute force of how a well-intentioned structure will always fail when average people are attached to its success. Arsenal is littered with people that don’t know what they’re doing, don’t understand the values of the club, and will ultimately fail. Also, please don’t think I mean that about everyone, the club is also full of a lot of absolute heroes who love the club and want to make it better.

There is hope. We are an institution, we are London based, we generate tremendous revenue streams, we have class, values and integrity… and we are a beautiful sleeping giant. When the Kroenke’s finally wake up, pull the wool from their eyes and take positive action by making people truly accountable for something exciting, we’ll be able to make the climb back up to the top.

… but what we can’t keep doing as fans is continue to celebrate average. We can’t keep groaning that it’s impossible to attain greatness. We can’t have such embarrassingly low standards.

Strong leadership shouldn’t be hard to find with the resources we have available. An exciting vision isn’t that hard to formulate if you are talented and ambitious. Moving Arsenal up a level in every department should be low hanging fruit.

… I just don’t think the reality has kicked in with those that own Arsenal.

Today is a dark day for Arsenal. Two teams that five years ago were in much worse positions commercially, financially and on the pitch are in the final of a trophy we’re not even good enough to qualify for.

The exec leadership can either lie down and accept it, or they can pull their finger out and get a little more serious about implementing an exciting vision for the future of our great club.

Let’s see where this summer goes, but for now, let’s all hide in a box and pray the worst doesn’t happen this evening.

x

797 Responses to “Liverpool and Spurs shame our owners ambition (Long Read)”

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  1. Marc

    Pedro

    You need to be more specific on the “average” people who have been put in charge of the club. I know you don’t rate Emery but are you including Sanllehi and Venkatesham?

  2. Moray

    Even decent people without accountability and without any tangible targets will typically underperform.

  3. Moray

    Surely the Kroenkes have an idea how a proper business should be run? Or are we just so far out of mind that as long as the stadium’s not on fire they are happy just jetting over to watch the occasional humiliation?

  4. Pedro

    Marc, our team psychologist is a guy called Dave Priestly, when he left Saracens, they stopped choking, and we’ve been getting progressively worse since he joined.

  5. Pedro

    Moray, they know how to run a biz, but I think they entrust Arsenal with the wrong people over and over.

    But we’ll see on Raul.

  6. Marc

    Pedro

    Fine bin the guy, one comment I would make is if you’re Emery and you’re seeing this guy not perform surely you go to Sanllehi and complain?

  7. Micheal

    Sorry Pedro, but this is more PR guff. Leadership in business or institution comes from the top. Yopu claim “there is hope” but where is the taingible evidence to support the comment ?

    Kroenke owns the club 100%. But what is the vision and ambition ?

    What message does it send if the owner cannot be bothered to attend a European cup final ? If he doesn’t care and if there is no grand plan or vision, why should anyone else bother ?

    Any football supporter can see the basic weaknesses at Arsenal, including the critical need to invest to prevent the club going backwards. Trouble is that Kroenke is not a football man and does not care.

  8. Pedro

    Micheal, I’m afraid I totally disagree. Stan doesn’t run the day to day, nor should he. Put the right leadership in at Arsenal and it doesn’t matter where the owner is.

    It’s precious sentimentality that Arsenal fans get upset Stan doesn’t attend games.

  9. azed

    Pedro

    You should ask Pam the lady what the hierarchy thinks of Unai.

    As I said yesterday, the summer should be us doing a hard reset and building a base for the future. It would have helped if we had a DOF but we don’t so Raul and to a lesser extent are going to do that.

  10. Guns of Hackney

    Peter, you are wasting your time trying to defend your (correct) position regarding Emery to this lot of dead eyed zombies , masquerading as Arsenal supporters. They gave up long ago being an independent entity and are now just a puppet on a string for Arsenal FC to parade about.

    We were bigger and better than Spurs and Liverpool. Chelsea and City were footnote. Only united were our better. And here we are.

    Nice touch re Reyes. If it wasn’t for Neville, I’m pretty sure he could have been a pretty decent player for us. Oh well. May he rest.

  11. Guns of SF

    I still remember Jose solo goal at middlesborough on a rain soaked night. He was something special and always had a soft spot for him. Terrible news for Gooners

  12. Marko

    We should bin the physiologist now? Fine I feel for the guy he’s got a helluva job trying to make idiots not be idiots and how to turn losers into winners. We keep hearing about this person and that person at the club (mostly it’s on the manager it seems) at some point we’ll come to the reason being a poor squad of players. I don’t think Sigmund Freud himself coupled with a management team of Pep and a young Alex Ferguson could turn these wank players into non wank players. 3 days since the final and not one mention of abject performances from players like Özil, Auba, Laca, Torreira, Koscielny, Monreal, Kolasinac and the utterly abysmal AMN. I personally would sack everyone and overhaul the whole squad start from scratch. Rename the club too while we’re at it. Something with sauce

  13. Goldinho

    A lot of good points Pedro
    But I still think your letting kroenke of a bit easy.
    At the end of the day he’s the guvnor ,and the buck stops with him.but unfortunately for us he doesn’t give a monkeys about Arsenal,as long as his investment grows.and as you say he’s in real estate,so he’s happy to sit on his fucking arsehole all day and watch his investment grow without having to do anything.
    You take Liverpool and that lot as an example,which your right to do,but Liverpool are owned by Fenway ,their business is sport,so they understand the value of winning teams,that’s how they make their doe.
    And at the end of the day,the club being filled with a bunch of fucking divs without a vision or a clue is down to kroenke.as long as he has anything to do with us we’re fucked

  14. Mr Serge

    I agree with Pedro we are a rudderless ship. The draw of London and our club is massively underestimated if klopp would go and live in shit liverpool then a top manager will come to us. I would go all in for alegri and tell him you have 50 million and whatever you generate in sales.
    If he has anything about him he would come and challenge himself against Klopp. Pep and Poch let’s see what you have got Alegri
    I would want to show I was the man. This league is the most competitive in the world and we are one of the top 3 clubs,
    I think Alegri would jump at the chance. Let’s give it to him
    Emery is a busted flush

  15. TheLegendaryDB10

    Absolutely spot on post Pedro!!

    It really is a sad state that we’re in. This is why I am absolutely furious at the BoD who just stood by and did nothing when AW was slowly rotting the club and did nothing to push things on (Remember Chips’s comment who said verbatim: “If he has a plan we back it, if he doesn’t have a plan we keep quiet.”)

    We are now where we deserve to be. And unfortunately I share Pedders view about our current leadership ability to fix this mess.

    Time will tell and this is why I class this TW as very crucial to our next steps in making visible improvements to the team.

  16. Moray

    Allegri rejected us last year when we had a bigger transfer Budget available. I’m not sure what he will have seen this season that would make him change his mind? Unless he feels his stock has fallen.

  17. Moray

    “ they know how to run a biz, but I think they entrust Arsenal with the wrong people over and over.”

    Pedro, that’s evidence that they DON’T know how to run a business. If you are a billion or so down you should really take some time to look t the industry you’re buying into and benchmark yourself against competitors. Problem is they could take us to the championship and still sell us at a huge profit.

    We passed over Klopp and Guardiola for legacy Wenger. That was folly at the time. Now it seems like complete idiocy. I hope Keown and Freddie can come in and bring some of the old sauce back to the club.

  18. Bob N16

    Great post Pedro. Sanhelli needs to show us what he’s about. Sort of agree about Kroenke and ownership in general. If top executives in place, we wouldn’t have a problem with our ownership but Kroenke screwed up with Wenger/ Gazidis. Hopefully Sanhelli’s a good appointment.

    Marko, do you have to repeat on a daily basis that you don’t rate AMN?

  19. Micheal

    Pedro: Nothing wrong with disagreeing.

    However I feel you are completely missing the point about ownership and responsibililty. Stan owns us 100% and Emery, Bould, Raul, the catering staff, groundstaff, etc are all employees.

    What other businessman-owner employees 400-odd people and washes his hands of the key responsibilities which drive any business – the overall business plan, ambition, targets, etc. No one is saying that Stan should be picking players or making the tea, FFS.

  20. Marko

    Bob do you have to on a daily basis comment on what other people are commenting on? You’re weird as fuck. Would you prefer if I only exclusively commented on Emery or Stan?

  21. HillWood

    As I said earlier
    Arsenal only have themselves to blame for this shit
    It’s like we went into ostrich mode after David Dein left and couldn’t see the bigger picture

  22. Bob N16

    Marko, I would argue the amount of posts you do on a football blog makes you pretty strange. I still feel that AMN has potential, I appreciate many disagree. Sometimes I rise to someone when I feel they are overdoing the bitchiness against a player. Not a problem if you disagree, just think there’s an irony about calling me weird when it does feel that your life appears to be predominantly based on this website and being taken as some sort of an ‘expert’. It’s very noticeable that when you’re challenged you tend to have a hissy fit. Get some life balance.

  23. Kwame

    We need a coach who can make the adrenalin flow in the boys. The will to die for the club is missing in our play. With these same crop of players Poch, Klopp and Pep would get them to play with passion. Everybody around this club has been made so comfortable that there is virtually no accountability to anyone. Spoilt brats!

  24. Receding Hairline

    George Graham thinks all things considered arsenal had a good season, would have been a very good season if we won the Europa and an excellent season if we finished top four.

    Emery is watching the champions league final live, so is Arsene ( wonder how he feels about the two teams who were below us and overtook us under his watch).

    I still don’t see a need for panic, Spurs and Liverpool are both at four to five year stage of their projects, this was just year one for us. Most of all this talk is simply because some happen to dislike the man in charge(no charisma,language etc).

  25. Moray

    HillWood, it’s been a long slide but most fans only cottoned on a couple of years ago. From marketing to legal we have underperformed in most departments: We’ve bought the wrong players and coached them badly, managed our contracts like amateurs, over trained and injured our players, alienated and dispirited our stars through lack of ambition and a fucked up pay structure. That we now sit with ageing dross on huge compensation should not be a surprise as it’s happened over years: how Long has Corporal Jenkinson been at the club, for example? We knew he wasn’t good enough many years ago but there he is.

    We are frogs in the pan of boiling water here. There is no easy way out. Whatever Kroenke brings or doesn’t bring we are stuck with the prick. It’s up to the club to get itself out of this shit, but more likely
    we will just enter a dark decade until things turn round.

  26. Marko

    They’re not overdoing shit. Since one of the worst performances by a player in a European final people have decided to direct their ire elsewhere. 8 of the 11 that started were awful and that’s nothing new and it’s been glossed over. Bob it’s also weird how you notice how much I’m on here and comment on how much I’m on here. It’s almost like you have to be on here to notice it.

  27. Receding Hairline

    Kwame passion doesn’t cover your flaws, which is why Pochettino bought 23 players at Spurs, Pep spent 200m on defence and Klopp spent a pretty penny too.

    We don’t need most of these players playing with passion, we need them to be playing elsewhere.

  28. Leedsgunner

    BBC reporting that Jose Antonio Reyes has passed away in a car accident… age 35. Wonderful feet, fantastic shot… condolences his his friends and family.

  29. Marko

    Also you haven’t challenged me once Bob. For that to happen you’d actually have to get involved in a discussion instead of your usual commenting on what people are commenting on mentioning moving on from Wenger and then disappearing. At least we now know that you rate AMN.

  30. Bob N16

    Agreed Moray, ‘until things turn around’….that’s what we’re all waiting for. If not Emery then who? If not Ranehli, then who? Will it take a DoF to start the turn? Are we turning now but it’s an enormous container ship type turn?

  31. HillWood

    Mr Serge
    I doubt if any of the players or directors actually live in London. Probably Hertfordshire easier access to London Colney
    Does Klopp live in Liverpool or somewhere like Chester

  32. Moe

    Hallelujah, Pedro.

    Kroenke is in it for the bottom line. He doesn’t care about trophies which is kinda counterintuitive because winning trophies will eventually increase the bottom line. However, with Arsenal the cash trough is so massive that even with minimal success, the Kroenkes come out ahead financially. Hence the insistence on status quo all these years.

    Agree with you 100%, we still dont have a winning team in place, but do the Kroenkes know that? I doubt it.

  33. Leedsgunner

    “Arsenal were ahead of the game. We had built our stadium, we had better players, and we were still enjoying our superb run of Champions League football. So what happened?”

    Answer? Complacency. We should have said goodbye to Arsene in 2006 because that was the absolute limit of Arsene’s genius. He could have retired as an universal legend of Arsenal then, but he overstayed his welcome by 12 years and completely tarnished his legacy.

    He believed in his own hype rather than striving to justify it, and the sad thing is most of us went with it because it was comfortable.

    Personally the final straw was when RvP was sold to United for peanuts… and it was justified on the basis of “footballing reasons.” I knew then Wenger was utterly done as an elite manager.

  34. Bob N16

    Marko, I comment fairly regularly, I read most streams. Just because I don’t feel the need to post relentlessly, doesn’t mean I don’t notice the back and forth on here. CC really gets you for example because you feel undermined. Your desire to come across as a footballing expert is apparent and when someone queries you, you overreact.

    Don’t think that just because you post more than anyone else, your views are any more important than anybody else.

    Spend more time with your mates and less time on here, might make you more amenable.

  35. Moray

    Bob, either we hire someone with some vision, like Spuds did with Poch or it will be an external change such as financial regulation, recession or a European Super league. Unfortunately I can’t see us coming up with much to change things but I hope I’m wrong. Arsenal has always been run with a safe pair of hands And an old school approach and this stability is no doubt what Kroenke is after.

  36. Moe

    Getting ready to cheer Lpool to smash the pretenders. You heard it here first, it’s gonna be ugly for the scum today.

  37. Receding Hairline

    Meuneir has elected to move to united who he supported since he was a boy apparently. Good luck to him.

    So the month spent speaking to him was wasted as I’m sure all united did was offer more in terms of salary

  38. Pedro

    Moe, I don’t think it’s bottom line… I think it’s like property, it’s the percentage increase in asset value over time.

  39. Pierre

    If a club hasn’t got untold billions to throw at a project like Chelsea and City have done recently then there is only one person who can bring a club back to competing for the title …….the manager.

    You can have the best owner, scouting system , facilities , stadium , backroom staff in the world , but if your manager is sub standard then the rest means nothing.

    Bertie Mee, shankly ,Revie, George Graham, Ferguson, klopp ,pochettino and wenger each transformed their respective clubs…

  40. Gonsterous

    Totally shocked by the news of Reyes. Funny how life can change in a second. Gone but never forgotten 🙁

  41. Receding Hairline

    Kroenke entrusted the football club to Gazidis and Wenger whom he liked. Annoying thing is Gazidis wasn’t sacked but left of his own accord. I hear now he wants Shad and Sven with him at Milan. I hope he takes Arteta too. Let’s see what Ivan’s vision is all about.

  42. Nelson

    It all sounds good by delegating the job to the right person. But they should be held accountable . There should be a performance review after each season.
    What have Raul and Vinai acheived up to now. Are sponsorship deals increased? Why Manure has so much more sponsorship deals than us? All Raul did was signing Suarez in January. They promised the fans Champions League football and failed. They have caused a lot of sadness to the fans. A stronger leader should come out and acts accordingly. He should set a performance target for everybody, including Vinai and Raul. This would change the culture of the club.

  43. Moe

    Marc,

    I am 100% confident that they will be humiliated. Of all the teams ahead of Arsenal, Spurs are the one team that doesn’t impress me. Take away Poch, and they are ordinary. As poorly as our season ended, we hmstill had ample chances to finish above them. Plus, we bossed them in both of our league games with an Arsenal team with no fight in them.

  44. Redtruth

    “Bertie Mee, shankly ,Revie, George Graham, Ferguson, klopp ,pochettino and wenger each transformed their respective clubs…”

    You forgot Clough the best of the lot.

    All those past managers would have been swept away by the tidal wave of money which consumes the game today.

  45. HillWood

    Moe
    Hope I’m very very wrong but I think The Scum have their name on the Cup
    Anyway my mobile will be switched off from 6pm tonight !

  46. Marc

    Nelson

    Well the new shirt deal is a considerable increase on the previous one and no one promised CL football. They also took over their current roles in September so weren’t in charge last summer.

    We need a change in culture at the club but if you’re going to criticise at least get the basic facts right.

  47. Un na naai

    Pedro

    You’re still too light on the kroenke’s
    When the pull the wool from their eyes?? What shall we do just wait then? Hope? How long will this will be in place?

    Nah, fuck all that noise. We need to vote with our feet
    We were quick enough to protest wenger well this is as bad as anything wenger served and it’s not going to get any better.
    We need emoty stadiums and angry protests

    Hit them in their pockets

    Also. For fucking years you lambasted wenger for sitting on a pile of cash because it devalues in the bank.
    Weeeeeell……. what the fuck are we doing now? Over £200m sat doing nothing with a £40m budget??? What the fuck!!!
    Talk about easy ride Pedro.
    They give zero shits about arsenal, the history, the fans. Zero shits. Yeah success would be nice.

    That’s what my wife says about winning the lottery. It would be nice. As in it’s not realistic/likely. Well success is realistic for arsenal if we had the right men at the top of our pyramid. The Deins for example. We are letting these cunts off the hook by not holding them to the same standards we held wenger to. A man who gave us two doubles and the invincibles. A man who gave us most of the best 20 players in arsenal history. Hold them to the same standards Pedro. They couldn’t give two shits.

  48. Bob N16

    ‘Studying you’ Marko, again over-egging your importance again.

    Moray, we need an inspirational hire at coach, as well as good acquisitions/ sales. Some level of patience will be required! Am beginning to feel that identifying a DoF that is going to lead the changes that we obviously need, will be crucial. If it’s Edu fine, hope he has a clear vision and if Emery can work with him, fine. If not Edu, if it’s him, needs to identify a coach who will share the vision.

  49. Nelson

    Marc

    I thought the deal was signed by Ivan. Also, in the recent interview, Vinai and Raul mentioned that they signed Emery based on his record in EL. They are giving the fans false hope.

  50. Marc

    “We need emoty stadiums and angry protests ”

    Another poster who doesn’t attend matches telling others what they should do.

  51. Bucko

    The rot set in when David Dein was pushed out. AW lost his direction, perhaps distracted by the absolute power, there was no clear plan and the club has suffered as a result. Throwing money at the job won’t do; we have to bring through the young players, including AMN (remember he’s a midfielder, not a right-back) and get rid of the deadwood. Thee is no quick-fix solution, so we need to give Emery a chance – Klopp’s Liverpool finished seventh not so long ago, but they had purpose, a vision and the desire to win, which sees them in their second successive UCL Final.

  52. Marc

    Nelson

    The new shirt deal was over seen by Gazidis. My point is the commercials have increased but if it was so easy to match ManU’s commercial deals wouldn’t everyone do it?

    The problems we have at Arsenal are not a 5 minute fix. Anyone thinking they are is just opening themselves up to further disappointment.

  53. Redtruth

    Imagine today’s game set in 1980.
    Nottingham Forest win the European Cup in 1979.
    Forest iose their best players to super rich clubs the following season.

  54. Moe

    Hillwood,

    I understand the unease and nervousness given our rivalry, but it ain’t happening. Zero doubt in my mind. Lpool are a much better team.

  55. Guns of Brixton

    “Marc, our team psychologist is a guy called Dave Priestly, when he left Saracens, they stopped choking, and we’ve been getting progressively worse since he joined.”

    MY WORD

    HAVE WE HIRED ANYONE , EFFIN ANYONE WHO IS REMOTELY COMPETENT???

  56. Champagne charlie

    Terrible news about Jose Antonio, that double against Chelsea in the FA cup will live long in the memory. Proper way to announce yourself, R.I.P

    Pedro,

    Nail on the head stuff, I cannot really disagree with what you’ve written there. I despise Kroenke, but we should be better placed for the ‘outlay’ we’ve made in recent seasons – though I personally struggle to see our ultimate objectives being achieved under him. Think he’s more just dandy as an also-ran in the CL places.

    BUT… This summer it’s imperative Raul and Co. get their shit right and flex whatever acumen they have.

    Personally I’d start with a new head arch, but appreciate the likelihood of a sudden shift to total ambition is a long shot. I’ll settle for a prepare summer’s squad management/overhaul to send a shockwave through the place. That will no doubt make us more competitive next season, but can they deliver such a thing? We shall see.

    I was asked an interesting question yesterday among sooner friends from another fellow in favour of a new coach to someone backing him:

    He said: If Emery delivers the same performance levels next season, but we make 4th, and win the EL final. Would that warrant him getting his optional third year?

  57. Pedro

    Very sad about Reyes, just a year older than me… hits home.

    In a car crash as well, horrible stuff.

  58. Pedro

    Guns, there are lots of great people at Arsenal.

    Shad F, Gary O’D, I think they have some very good scouts, the loans guy is very good, Freddie doing good things.

  59. MGooner

    Property price appreciation is minimal and is for boring investors.

    I prefer leveraged equities 🙂

    Meanwhile seems Newcastle might be sold to some rich people who would probably get their net spend to way over 288M over 5 years.

    288m compared to Pools and Totts could be perceived as cherry picking.
    Why not benchmark against the top 10 and analyse percentiles, it might be better data analysis.

  60. Un na naai

    Marc

    I run a business dopey. If I got weekends off I’d play football rather than give my money to a bunch of pricks who treat you like the mug you are.

    So yes, I’m an arsenal fan who attended at Highbury regularly giving my opinion.

    Such a bitchy comment. Very Mark with a C thing to say.

  61. Leedsgunner

    If Emery was sacked because of his record in the Europa League, all the more reason for his dismissal after our humiliation last Wednesday. Emery, before Wednesday, has already stated on record how he doesn’t feel the pressure as much as he did at his other clubs… why is that? Is he that comfortable already?

    We need a manager who understands Arsenal through and through… who has led Arsenal, won with Arsenal and can unify Arsenal.

    What about PV4 as our head coach? He has been slowly building his experience without fanfare at Man City, New York and Nice.

    He would be inspirational and charismatic and bring together our badly divided fanbase… plus he wouldn’t be a total novice like some.

  62. GoonGoonerGone

    My take on Kroenke is that even if Arsenal finishes in 17th position every season and the club is still generating profits, he will be fine with it.
    Why would a family with no idea of football buy a renowned club like Arsenal if it is not for the profits the club can generate?
    Beyond his teams in the US, has Kroenke had the balls to purchase another team anywhere else in the world?
    He is sitting on a mountain of pounds at Arsenal and he knows it. He is a businessman, a corporate whore, and the only thing he knows is profits. He saw his chance and took it. He has no sentimental ties to Arsenal. His very absence at Baku validates this point. He probably knows more about his cows on his ranch than about the Arsenal players and the club’s history.
    If anyone of you think Kroenke cares about Arsenal FC, you need serious medication.
    Unfortunately, Emery in comparison to Wenger is much of a muchness.
    If you want the youth to come through, then Emery is not your man. A younger, energetic manager with vision, a specific style of play and a willingness to sort out the defence will suffice.
    Essentially, Emery is a poor man’s surrogate and I am afraid that a manager who can’t do defence when he had a whole season to rectify the fecal mess of a defence Wenger left us with is not a manager that can be relied upon to get it right. Irrespective if these were Wenger’s defenders or not, or if they can’t defend. These are international defenders and it is the job of the Head Coach to sort defence out. In my opinion, they defended worse than Wenger’s defence and I waited ten years for Wenger to sod off.
    Take it from me, this is Emery’s last season at Arsenal unless Kroenke is happy finishing outside Europa League places and Emery takes a pay cut.
    Under Kroenke, Sanhelli and Emery, Arsenal will continue going slowly nowhere and all you posters will continue venting your spleen ad infinitum while the likes of City, Pool, Tottenham, Chelsea and Spurs blow smoke up Arsenal’s arse .

  63. Nelson

    Marc

    You didn’t get my point. Pedro said that KSE is perfectly fine. They don’t need to show any interest in the club as long as they allow the club to spend the money. My point is that this behavior has a bad influence on the culture of the club. I am citing the example of Vinai and Raul. What Manure did is served just as a reference to Vinai. I want KSE to hold everybody accountable.

  64. Ishola70

    It’s not just about money in regards owners unless you are Man City and funded by a country.

    We can see that the owners and those involved with Spurs and Liverpool are far more sports orientated than Kroenke. Kroenke pretends to be sports orientated. He isn’t really. And look at his other sport franchises. They pale into insignificance in comparison to Henry’s Boston Red Sox who are a sports institution. And there is no need to compare Spurs front man Levy with Kroenke. There is no contest there. Arsenal got the dud owner in comparison.

    I think Arsenal would benefit from a more sports orientated hands on owner which would suggest that Kroenke is a hindrance.

    Regarding Bennacer. He’s a good player in his own right but he’s as small if not smaller than Torreira. A midget. He’s a terrier but having a tiny tots midfield may not be the best idea. Maybe bought as a squad player if the price is not high but Arsenal need first team players brought in.

    And finally so, so sorry regarding Reyes.

  65. Marc

    Un

    That’s fine you have commitments at weekends etc that mean you can’t attend matches – I don’t criticise you for that I criticise you for telling me that I shouldn’t go and should be out protesting on your behalf.

    My point is don’t ask or expect others to do on your behalf what you either can’t or won’t do yourself.

  66. Nelson

    Marc

    It is known that everybody in the club is too relax. It is the responsibility of the owner to change that.

  67. Ishola70

    If Kroenke had any sort of worth to this club other than selling up he would put in a sports orientated hands on front man like Spurs do.

    And no not Josh Kroenke.

  68. WengerEagle

    Wow, shocking news about Reyes.

    A little thing but he was the first name that I ever got on an Arsenal jersey, the 04/05 blue away strip. I was 9, remember absolutely buzzing about signing Reyes and he didn’t disappoint with some beautiful hits, the double against the Chavs in the Cup in particular sticks out. Was the player along with Arshavin that I was most saddened by how it didn’t pan out for here after an electric season and a half from both of them.

    RIP mate.

  69. MGooner

    Marc is protesting to Un about Un wanting Marc to protest about something else.

    @ Nelson – Why can’t the owner be relaxed when everybody at the club is relaxed. Why are you prejudiced against the owner 😉

  70. WengerEagle

    Dreading this tonight, I lose either way given there are 10 Bin Dipper fans to every Gooner over here.

    We’ll all be getting sleepless nights if the monstrously ugly Spuddies beat us to the CL punch though so reluctantly fangirling the Kloppites tonight.

    Mane and Firmino to score, 2-0 Pool.

  71. Nelson

    MGooner

    I don’t want everybody at the club be relaxed. They should care about winning or losing. Everybody should be under pressure. Cech also talked about the difference between Chelsea and Arsenal.

  72. MGooner

    @Nelson

    A better way would be that everybody does what they must do, nothing more, nothing less.

    There is no need to be under pressure 😉

  73. Pedro

    Red, you don’t even go to games, for you to be lecturing people about being active is a touch on the rich side.

  74. Cesc Appeal

    Where does the £17 Million we had to pay Wenger and his staff figure into our accounts?

    A one off payment or would that have been on our wage bill?

  75. Emiratesstroller

    Pedro

    First of all it is a sad day that Reyes has passed away at such a young age.

    Personally I enjoyed watching very much this talented player whose career at
    Arsenal was probably cut short by the terrible tackle of Neville.

    He was never the same player after that game.

    Following onto your post about the club. I think that it is far more ‘measured’
    than yesterday’s post.

    I agree with a lot of the points you make. We have an owner who probably has the best interest of the club at heart, but somehow is not the right investor
    for Arsenal. He needs to show passion for the team and silent Dan does not sadly exhibit that characteristic.

    Football may be a business but there is more to the game and I think that both
    Arsenal and Man Utd are now struggling with the same problem.

    Arsenal’s decline started with the departures of Henry and Vieira, but more
    recently with the mishandling of the potential transfer of Suarez from Liverpool. The performance of the management of Liverpool and ours was
    very clear on that occasion.

    It demonstrated clearly to me that Arsenal had become an “unambitious club”.
    Okay we bought Ozil and Sanchez, but both these players were rejected realistically by Real Madrid and Barcelona.

    The route since then has been in my assessment on a downward curve. My view as I have expressed on the last thread is that a club which indicates early
    in the season just how limited our transfer budget is lacks ambition.

    We made a profit last season and more importantly our transfers exceeded in
    value our recruitment.

    Sending out the message when our commercial revenues have grown is a worrying development. I wonder what Adidas thinks. They are reputedly investing £60 million pa in the club and are being told that their sponsorship is
    not being spent on new players.

    From my point of view we need to be buying at least one quality offensive midfielder plus two to three defensive recruits. The maths tells you that if
    we are going to recruit quality that will cost more than £100 million.

    In answer to your question as to why the board accepted Kroenke the answer
    is as I have suggested many times before. Usmanov was considered unsuitable
    and the only other possibility was Kroenke.

    The sacking of Dein was a consequence of his mishandling of the situation. He
    had been a lifelong friend of Fiszman who never forgave him for what he did.

    That is the real tragedy of our current situation.

  76. Words on a Blog

    Pedro,

    As real estate investors, the Kroenke’s primary concern has been, and will always club’s asset value, rather than profitability or sporting success.

    In the last, they managed this through a combination of delegating pretty much everything football (ie. ebpverything bar the sposnorship deals and real estate sales, to Wenger. as long as: a) Arsen kept to the (1-year) self-sustaining rule and spend within his means, and b) attain top 4 and therefore a Champions League place, everything was hunky dory, because the asset (i.e. Arsenal FC) would appreciate in the context of higher TV and sponsorship revenues.

    Once competition heated up from a revitalised Liverpool and Spurs, and the Top4 effectively became a Top6, Wenger (with approval from KSE) tried to spend his way out of the problem. But his football magic and judgement was on an accelerating path of decline,and he failed in his goal.

    We are now in the third season outside the ECL. Effectively, the absence of ECL revenues means that the self-sustaining is ALREADY DEAD. Our ridiculously high wages (relative to football talent and league table position) and Europa revenues means that we will make a loss in the financial loss in the the year to May 2019; and we will most likely make another loss in the year ending May 2020, even with the extra Adidas revenues.

    So the pressure on Raoul will be massive to shift higher earning players (Ozil, auba, Laca, Mikki, Kola, Kos) and/or high transfer fee potential players (Laca, Auba, Xhaka, Guendouzi?) before getting in any of the big name, high transfer fee;wages we all discuss and covet. Otherwise, the bulk of any new signings will be the Under 23s and loaners so derided by Le Grovers and a few Johnny Whosehes?

    This really will be The Summer of Raoul.

    If We go young and cheap, we’re likely to drift out of the top4 race, and enter a Europa League race with the likes of Wolves, West Ham and Everton.

    Unless of course Stan and Josh wake up and realise that even a glamorous building needs a cash injection to renovate and upgrade it……

    Because there’s only really two ways in which you can manage a business, real estate or otherwise. you can radically cut costs, and become leaner and smaller (Almost inevitably entailing lower league position). or you can invest and uograde (a risk because the investment may be in vain as a higher league position is of course not inevitable.)

    And if they finally wake up, it might be the summer of Stan and Josh.

  77. Marko

    Wenger could have forgone that last year like Gattuso did when he got sacked. That would have been classy

  78. Un na naai

    Pedro

    What’s attending games got to do with having an opinion? You think this club deserves the money being ploughed into by gullible fans week in week out?

    This wool you mention. Do you really want to wait around to see if kroenke removes it or would you rather it happens quick sharp like ripping off a plaster
    It’s all bollocks anyway
    There is no wool. He knows full well emery is not an elite coach.

  79. Cesc Appeal

    Marko

    Agree with that.

    Especially as someone who ‘loves’ the club.

    He knew what financial situation we were in and that he had a massive hand in it.

    You think a £50 Million budget, £10 Million is no joke.

  80. Words on a Blog

    From the Kroenkes’ perspective, the situation now is that Arsenal’s asset value has declined because of lower Europa and PL revenues, in both relative and absolute terms, in a market in which the majority of PL clubs have seen their revenues and asset values appreciate.

    The question is what should they do about this state of affairs: accept the situation as inevitable and just confine themselves to cutting costs?

    Or take a risk by injecting funds in order to obtain better players to attain Top 4 revenues, which will see their asset (Arsenal FC) appreciate again?

  81. Un na naai

    Marc

    I’m not asking you to do anything. I’m saying dont expect change while you line their pockets and attend as often as you can.

    For the record. If I were not tied up I still would not attend. The place has no soul. We sold it when we left Highbury. Same as new Wembley. Just a glass door, corporate office block masquerading as a football stadium. These places sicken me.

  82. Cesc Appeal

    WOAB

    Right now I think with Chelsea banned from the transfer market and United having Ole as manager the owner should think about putting some cash into the club. Putting in £100 Million so that we can spend £150 Million.

    That doesn’t mean go out and offer £80 Million for Zaha, but to be able to still try and get targets like Upamecano etc who can help us get UCL football and also have a longterm future as valuable players and assets.

    He won’t though. Obviously.

    I’ve never really wanted an owner’s money or thought we needed it, but the financial decisions over the last 4 years have been so appalling, the top of the league is getting better, the chasing pack (Everton, West Ham, Wolves etc) are getting better that I think we need to expedite this process.

    Realistically if this Newcastle takeover happens and they spend massively, with Wolves looking good etc we might not even be a Europa League team for much longer unless our scouting is A1.

  83. Words on a Blog

    As an aside, I would think, that if the Kroenkes (and therefore Raoul) decided to go the low cost/youth route, then two things follow:

    1) Edu is not really the ideal candidate for Technical Director. We’d need someone like Over,ars, who is used to working in a youth-dominated club

    2) Emery is probably the Head Coach they need. You would need more of a developmental manager used to working with young and inexperienced players.

  84. Gentlebris

    Someone was saying here today that if the guys down the street win today, Arsenal might sit up.
    People here said no……no big reactions are to be expected. But I have been thinking ever since.

    What else could make the season ticket holders bitter than the constant thought that CL trophy is down there with our beautiful cousins?

    Those sissies would make enough noise about it and such noises could be good for the health of those regular guys at the ground who make this decline possible through their inactions.

    So may the best thing happen to us tonight!

    That being said, how could we hire a guy just being fired for failing and hope for success?
    Europa league specialist?
    Well, he just delivered his speciality in great fashion.

    First time on a big stage he failed, and bang…..we wrapped him up and brought him home.

    He has failed again!

    Oh no, this’s just his first year, let’s give him more years. Of course Pep and Klopp needed more years.

    Yes, cos Pep arrived a sacked failure and so was Klopp.

  85. Pedro

    Marko, Gattuso was doing that to stick it to Ivan… and he has 30 years in management left.

    Wenger needed that retirement cash

  86. Words on a Blog

    Cesc,

    You won’t be surprised to hear that I agree with you.

    Perpetual,dependence on a sugar-daddy owner is bad.

    But sometimes an owner needs to invest to accumulate.

    This is such a time.

  87. Marko

    Stan’s not going to put in 100 million of his own money that’s not going to happen. But Raul should do is go look we didn’t get champions league but we need you to compensate for that. We’ll continue to go for the targets we had in mind for champions league football and we’ll sell the players that we planned on selling anyway but we need something from them this summer otherwise we’ll slip away even further. No one’s asking for a warchest but rather that Stan actually gets involved in some way this summer

  88. Cesc Appeal

    ‘Wenger needed that retirement cash’

    Sarcasm doesn’t always come across on here.

    I presume this was you being sarcastic?

  89. Alexanderhenry

    Words on a blog

    Good posts.

    Football is a speculative sport.
    Stan doesn’t seem to accept this.

  90. Cesc Appeal

    WOAB

    Completely agree.

    Speculate to accumulate.

    That’s what he has to do now.

    Right now Arsenal are losing money in terms of turnover going down each year with the loss of UCL football.

    Our squad has the lowest value of the top 6.

    Putting £100 Million in the club, allowing £150 Million to be smartly used could reverse both those things in 2 years.

    He can’t just sit back and watch his asset appreciate anymore. English fans are not like American fans. I thought last year would have taught him that.

  91. Zfree

    Great post Pedro.

    What a depressing perspective. To your points, this isn’t really on the distant owners, but we seemed to have missed the boat on what player valuations would do in the past few years. So much more money to be had with investing in the right players. £40-40M on the right players is a lot, and maybe would’ve forced the owners to dip into their pockets now and again a few years back. But spent on younger up and comers, that could later be flipped for £60-80M. Speculating on the right players in the £5-25M bracket a few years back, some could be missed but a few could pan out to be the dembeles, coutinhos, and eriksens of the world. We have none of that.

  92. Words on a Blog

    Redtruth,

    You did say it 5 years ago; I know.

    Used to read the comments, without ever commenting myself.

  93. Cesc Appeal

    WOAB

    The only good thing is there seems to be plenty of interest from billionaires to buy football clubs.

    If we have another bad yer and finish 6th/7th you might get someone come along who wants a massive football team and thinks Kroenke might sell up while he can still make £700 Million – £1 Billion on his asset.

    That it is too much like hard work and with the LA Rams flying anyway…

    But then again he is renowned for not selling.

    Basically over the last 10 years Arsenal have continually turned left when they should have gone right.

    Kroenke and Usmanov, Wenger’s new contracts, no DoF, socialist wage policy over higher transfer spend, letting Wenger keep his coaches etc.

    Funny to think back on the title of that book a few years ago ‘The Making of a Modern Superclub’.

    Got to say right now that sounds more like Liverpool or Spurs.

  94. Samir

    If Stan doesn’t do something we’ll be a mid table team.

    Losing to the likes of Wolves, Leicester and Everton will be the norm as they have better players than us at the moment.

    Bar Leno, Bellerin, Auba and Lacazette our squad is very very poor quality wise.

  95. Words on a Blog

    One (small) factor to consider is in the past, whilemhe was only a majority owner, and locked in dispute for control with Usmanov, he had no incentive to inject funds in the business, as Usmanov would have effectively had a free ride in reaping any benefits of a Kroenke investment. At the time, an agreement between Kroenke and Usmanov on anything Arsenal, let alone a proportionate cash injection, would have been unthinkable.

    Now Kroenke owns the whole shebang, he just might feel a little differently about Arsenal’s absolute and relative decline. I don’t know much about his American sports franchises, but from what I understand, he has been known to invest……albeit I think primarily in stadia and physical infrastructure….

  96. Words on a Blog

    Cesc,

    Yeah, he could just think the whole thing is too expensive, and too much trouble, remote, ultra-competitive unlike his US assets and just sell up for a profit to a Qatari (shudder to think of a PSG mark 2) or an Emirati (don’t mind, tend to be methodical as well as generous) sheik, or alternatively an ambitious US based sports group like Fenway….

  97. Pedro

    Marko, he’s principled and smart. He’s made the fans love him even more, and hate Ivan a little bit extra.

    Proper power move.

  98. Marko

    Speculate to accumulate.

    Someone needs to tell the people owning and running Arsenal that good players and good football brings in sponsorship. Competing and actually being successful makes more money than middling along doing nothing. Even as I write this I realize that they can’t necessarily throw money at the problem because of that overblown wage bill. Stan could pump in 50 million or 100 million but we still need to rid the club of overpaid wank players anyway. Not just cause they need to fuck off from the club but because the wage structure is needs to be lowered we need value for money

  99. Champagne charlie

    Big Weng strutting about a hotel full of Spud fans in Arsenal trackies is levels of banter. Go full-kit wanker Arsene, for old times sake

  100. Marko

    Pedro you say some things sometimes that really confound. Gattuso is gone that “power” move is about as powerful as a slap from a midget with a nub for a dick. He’s gone Ivan is still there. If Ivan signs more players like Piatek they won’t hate as much

  101. Marko

    Someone should tell Arsene it’s pretty embarrassing to be seen as an Arsenal fan these days. Really the last few years. Especially today especially in Madrid.

  102. MidwestGun

    Hey Y’all.. Good Post Pedro. Can’t argue against any of that..

    Really tragic and sad new regarding Reyes.

    Think one thing many need to consider on here..is Stan is 71 yrs old.. He is moving into that phase of his life where he is setting up his son for succession. So can’t see him selling and effectively Josh is running the bulk of his businesses. Stan more interested in LA obviously because he lives there and it involves a massive infrastructure improvement which is kind of his thing. so most of his time will be spent there. So Josh is the important Kroenke.

    Also, there is a saying the squeaky wheel gets the grease. Raul needs to be in the Kroenke’s ears daily. I think that was also a huge failing of AW. Basically a yes man for the owner. . His ego and economics degree made him think he could succeed no matter what circumstance he was given.

    Anyhow.. dreading the CL match… but like a trainwreck… have to watch.

  103. Emiratesstroller

    Words on a Blog

    The club did invest 15 years ago but it was in the stadium and not in team.

    I have no objection when that decision was taken because at that time we needed a new stadium fit for 21st Century. Highbury was too small for the number of supporters who wanted to watch Arsenal.

    However, three very poor decisions were made afterwards.

    1. Dein advised Kroenke about the possibility of buying Arsenal
    2.Dein then sold his shareholding to Usmanov
    3.Wenger was retained for 10 years beyond his sell by date.

    The reality is that the Board were opposed to the shares acquisition by Kroenke who was misled by Dein about the Board’s intentions. He was sacked
    because of this.

    What followed was that Fiszman became terminally ill and in 2011 made the decision to sell his shareholding to Kroenke as did Nina Bracewell-Smith.
    That gave Kroenke control of club and we have seen consequences of those
    fateful decisions.

    The reality is that the Board were always opposed to the sale of the club to Usmanov. He was not considered fit to own the club. There is precedent elsewhere for that decision. He is persona non grata at IOC and he was banned
    from entering USA long before Trump arrived.

  104. Cesc Appeal

    That’s all we can hold out for, Kroenke Jr sees Arsenal as his now. Daddy has the Rams now I can make a name for myself here.

    Here’s hoping.

  105. Zfree

    With American sports you can’t just pump ownership money into the squad. There are salary caps except really in baseball but I don’t think Kroenke owns a baseball team. Maybe the idea of pumping money into a squad to have those player assets appreciate and garner value is too foreign for Stan. Hopefully Josh gets it

  106. Cesc Appeal

    You would think someone like Sanllehi will be trying to get his hands on as much money as possible.

    He’s not adverse to spending big and making the most of finances.

  107. Valentin

    Quote from Pedro
    Marc, our team psychologist is a guy called Dave Priestly, when he left Saracens, they stopped choking, and we’ve been getting progressively worse since he joined.

    Quote from Marko
    We should bin the physiologist now?

    @Marko
    Do you know that a psychologist and a physiologist are two separate jobs and titles?
    One treat the mental aspect, the other is in charge of the body.

  108. MidwestGun

    Yep Cesc… People keep saying Stan wasn’t at the final in Baku.. But Josh was .. that should pretty much tell you who is going to make things happen if it’s going to happen.

  109. Champagne charlie

    “People keep saying Stan wasn’t at the final in Baku.. But Josh was .. ”

    Hope he felt like a fucking idiot

  110. Nelson

    Pool: Allison, Alexander-Arnold, Van Dijk, Matip, Robertson, Fabinho, Henderson, Wijnaldum, Salah, Mane, Firmino.

    Spuds: Lloris, Trippier, Alderweireld, Vertonghen, Rose, Winks, Sissoko, Eriksen, Son, Alli, Kane

  111. Valentin

    When Randy Lerner bought Aston Villa, he thought that he was buying a big club that could easily reach the top and reap the reward of Champion’s League football.

    Unless there is a hard reset at Arsenal, Josh Kroenke could be in for the same nasty surprise with Arsenal. All the newcomers will make the league more and more competitive. Some of the newcomers will be able to flex more financial muscle that he could ever muster. Others seem to have a clear strategy and people to execute.
    In a few years, Arsenal could be cut adrift and left without a chance of recovering.
    An historical giant that has been left behind.

  112. Marko

    How must you feel if you’re Lucas Moura and you’re benched for the final after what he did against Ajax

  113. Valentin

    @Pedro,

    It is a good political move by Gattuso to leave on his term. That leaves the door open for him to make a triumphant return.

    However his tenure has not been a great success neither on or off the pitch. He is a prickly character whom a lot of Italian football supporters don’t seem to really appreciate.

    However right now Gazidis is the guy in charge. Until his demise all Gattuso can do is media-snipe from the side.

  114. Marko

    I of course meant the psychologist Valentin. Thanks for the correction. I also meant Kenny Lala too earlier when I mistakenly said Kenny Sala. And of course when you said Eboue had aids you meant he doesn’t have aids. And Steve Rowley wasn’t back at Arsenal when you said that he was. Phew now that all that’s cleared up

  115. David Smith

    Hopefully, a desire to be part of the European league, if/when it happens, might make the Kroenkes reassess things.
    As it stands they will be left behind this lucrative venture
    The longer the Kroenkes have been at the club, and the greater the control they assumed, the worse things have got on the pitch.

  116. Bueleydave

    As far as I can see BBC website has not yet announced the teams. Le Grove well ahead even in a game we have no direct interest in. BBC probably have 50+ out there. What the fuck are they doing to earn their publicly funded salaries?