Puppet Master Behind Mesut Ozil Strategy

by & filed under News Review.

courtesy @allthatchas

I thought I’d wait to see what the BIG DOG DAVE ORNSTEIN penned on The Athletic this morning before dropping a post on the aftermath of Xhaka-gate yesterday.

Predictably, the piece points towards a familiar story… a lack of leadership at Arsenal.

I’m not calling time on anyone yet, but my deep fear is fancy players aside, the direction of Arsenal is somewhat off-track again, or, more to the point, has never been on track. Rumblings I hear from the club around leadership have been far from positive, and the fact that there was a motion to offer Unai Emery a new deal last summer tells you that the expertise levels in some parts of the boardroom are well off.

The big talking point today was the list of managers that were under consideration in 2018. The shortlist was pretty much where we expected it to be. I was surprised Enrique / Jardim weren’t on the list. I was surprised Lopetigui was on there. Outside that, the shortlist had all the obvious candidates.

Arteta was the frontrunner, the point that is missing for me is that Unai Emery most certainly wasn’t on the original shortlist. From what I understand, he was a last-minute sub when Ivan lost his nerve on Mikael Arteta. I don’t think it’s hard to piece that together from the timeline of events, and I think even the staunchest Emery fan would be hard pushed to convince anyone that Unai was a better candidate than most of the names on the list. I know that his English was raised as a concern by people at interview stage, namely, that he couldn’t speak a word of it. I know from doing my own personal numbers and research he was a bad candidate, so I can’t imagine our number crunchers gave him a thumbs-up, most likely because no analysis was done due to the time crunch. Even a cursory look at Google would tell you he couldn’t organise a defence, he had trouble with egos and the football was overly negative.

So unless every single person on that list rejected the club, it really must have just been Arteta at the death before we switched attention to someone that had been freshly fired.

Arteta’s lack of a backroom team was apparently a problem. Again, it’s another contradiction for me. The club has gone out of its way to talk about the new modern infrastructure, then the first thing we do is let Unai Emery bring in 5 of his own coaching staff, completely unvetted after being fired by PSG? How is that due diligence? We literally bought in a strength and conditioning coach when we already had one that had won a World Cup with Germany and transformed our pitiful operation back in the day. We had an assistant. We had a keeping coach. We had video analysts. We could have just copied what PSG did for Thomas Tuchel, namely, gone out and purchased whoever the best assistant in world football was at the time. If the only problem you have with a candidate is they don’t have 2 additional coaching staff, that’s kind of ideal. It reduces the candidate’s power, gives leadership more control of the direction of the club, and gives everyone the assurance that quality control measures were in place.

Major point here: The club fired Wenger in April. They had time to work out all of these kinks. They had the opportunity to rebuild Arsenal around a vision. Fuck whether that was Arteta or not. The idea was correct. Bring in a young coach with big ideas. Set the bar low with the fans, tell them we’re building an exciting future around kids, and we’re going to build from the ground up, and we’re going to make The Emirates the most exciting place to watch football in the world. Exactly the approach Chelsea took this season.

How could last season have been any worse than what it was? We’d have had a style in place now, a City light. The players would have known what they’re doing. We’d be in year two now and we’d all know exactly where we were heading as a club.

Again, I have to return us to the original point. Some of our leadership team wanted to give Emery a new deal last summer, despite the mountain of evidence he was tanking the squad. This season, seeing that we’re in deep decline again, with fires literally everywhere, we’re being assured the manager will be given time.

Based on what? A lack of a replacement could be a fair point. Not surprisingly, there’s no contingency plan outside Freddie Ljungberg, which is a huge problem and a major red flag. How can no thought have gone into contingency after watching the insipid Europa League final? How can they not have a list of 5 candidates after travelling down to the training and seeing what’s going on? We should have someone waiting by the phone, studying our squad, making plans.

You know what happens when you don’t have a plan? Jose Mourinho. The lack of direction we have is similar to that of United. Because you don’t know where you’re going, you outsource your decisions to super agents. Make no mistake, Mourinho would feel good in the moment, but he’s an arsonist. He’d bury us in 2 seasons. OGS is taking a lot of stick at the moment, no one is out here pointing the finger at Jose for the wreckage he left him to fix.

Interestingly I was told that Edu has been the black hand behind the Mesut Ozil issue that’s going on. Questionable strategy against a player that has public sentiment on his side, not to mention the fact he’s consistently communicated to the media that he’s going nowhere. Again, is this what you’d call leadership? Creating a huge media fuss for what is essentially a losing battle that has in part, contributed to the break-neck speed in which public sentiment has turned against the manager. I would also bet that this inconsistent behaviour has led to some of the dressing room split that lots of papers are reporting on this morning.

Remember this: Arsenal pulled forward transfer budget from this upcoming summer to make last year happen. It wasn’t a gift from Josh. It wasn’t anything clever. It was a major gamble. The missing part of the commendable effort was considering the manager. He’s not very good, we could all see that last season, but Raul has been so invested in the decision, maybe he can’t see beyond his nose here?

Let’s see where it goes, but it’s worth noting we’re in October, two of our captains are in disgrace, the football is terrible, there’s a dressing room split, the fans have turned against a manager so petrified at the moment he has ‘good ebening’ Tourettes syndrome and it’s affecting him in interviews.

Not a good look. We need strong leadership and we need it now. Showing faith in something that’s clearly broken is not that.

What’s the plan, Arsenal?

345 Responses to “Puppet Master Behind Mesut Ozil Strategy”

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  1. Valentin

    This version of all three Raul, Vinay and Ivan wrote each a name in an envelop and it was the same rings as true as Rodgers “I have written a name in my envelope”.
    This may make for great story telling, but I sincerely doubt that it is how things really happened.

    If true, then I would seriously question their football knowledge and real behind the scene research on the candidates. All the flaws that Emery is currently showing had been in evidence in every single one of his previous job especially the ones outside of Spain.

    * Poor away record
    * Poor man management skills
    * Poor communication skills
    * Slow descent of the quality of football after an initial spark
    * Boring and ineffective style of football saved by the individual quality of players
    * Mismanagement of youth players
    * Fallout with big stars

  2. Guns of Hackney


    I think we have fond memories of a wonderful player in a really shitty side but…I don’t think cesc would get into our best side. I really don’t.

    Cesc was made captain when everyone Arsene thought wanted to leave was made captain, hence why the terrible Henry (as captain) was made, captain.

    Cesc was great but definitely not a leader in the majority of situations. He also may not even get into the very best Arsenal sides. Just an opinion and I am a big Cesc fan.

  3. R.S.P.C.Arsenal

    Good reading peter,

    However I find it slightly disturbing, w3 are in Groundhog Day again,
    Fans hating manage4 fans loving him, fans hating one playe4 fans loving him.

    To me the club is fucked.

    Only solution would be a cut throat boss wee£ out the shit, or if we can’t afgord that, Freddie and let him do what he wants..

    Clubs in crisis , in fact we have been since 2011..

  4. Graham62


    What do you mean exactly?

    Do you think any coach would have allowed Xhaka to be captain and also get our defence to look even more vulnerable than it did under AW?

  5. Guns of SF

    I disagree GOH

    Cesc was cut from a different cloth from these primadonnas.
    He was trained and bled with the invincibles.

    Not a yeller I disagree, Ive seen him yell plenty. Not just that, but he also had a fighting spirit in him, not seen much since. 17 yr old Cesc, mixing it up with any player who took him on. Throwing pizza on the red nose in pizza gate.

    I always felt comfortable with him on the ball, as with TR7. Steady and stable hands…

    Now, its nothing like those days. When teams park the bus we struggle. Bar Laca fighting off 2 defenders to shoot, we have not practiced plays, to break teams down in the final third. Even Auba does not know what to do aside from cross.

    Again, down to Emery. Our DNA is to attack. Yet, we seem to not do very well with it. With our firepower- that is criminal.

    Anyhow, back to Cesc-

    who would you have? Cesc or Ozil??? Which current midfielder is better than Cesc?

  6. Graham62


    Most teams in Europe would die for our attack and although our midfield is lacking a wee bit, it is our transition from defence to attack that is nullifying us.

    Look how quickly Brentford get the ball forward and they don’t have the likes of Auba, Lacazette and Pepe at their disposal.


  7. Guns of Hackney


    Lolz. I loved Cesc but I do stand by and say he would t be in our very best sides. But of course I’m joking. He is a 10 in a world of 4’s at the moment.

  8. Guns of Hackney


    The day I watch Brentford as a measure against us is the day I absolutely stop watching football forever. And I’m already 99% there!

  9. Guns of Hackney

    Cesc failed at Barca.

    Let’s hold it down a bit.

    Good. Not great. Better but not the best.

    Too many misty eyes on here.

  10. Guns of SF

    I did shed tears when he left… well almost.

    Point is…. cesc in his prime would walk over any mid we have currently.

    When he is done playing, its the official end of the Invincibles. No one left on the pitch.

    Back then, those were men… not the boys we have now. Not the great captain Xhaka. lol

  11. Graham62


    I know but that’s the problem these days, every other team seem to make it look so simple.

    Why can’t we?

  12. London gunner

    Anyone else feel cesc peaked young and never really hit the top levels we expected of him. Not to say he was bad for barca but he was no ballon dor level player.

  13. Guns of Hackney


    Football is actually really simple. Really really simple. There’s a myth that it’s really complicated but it isn’t. Not at all. Football is about patterns and there are only a certain amount of patterns that one can play. However, if you can play those patterns really well and better than the other team, or have one or two genuine game changers, you have a very good chance of winning that game.

    When Arsenal were brilliant and we had that fearsome left: Cole, pires and Henry, it was so simple…Cole ran and gave it to pires who gave it to Henry. We could transition from back to front in seconds. Very easy when you think about it.

  14. Guns of SF

    Cesc peaked at Arsenal. Barca was good but not like he did for us.
    Ditto all our players we sold them. None stayed that long and did anything remarkable for them.

  15. Mr Serge

    I am with Graham balls to Gstzidis he is a slime ball he did nothing for ten years then hired emery and left
    He screwed us at every turn

  16. bennydevito

    Rafa Benitez, lol! Never ceases to get a giggle that one, I’d rather Mourinho and that’s saying something.

    Not a bad shout Un Nai regarding Brendan Rodgers. I’ve always found him a bit of a buffoon in the David Brent mold but he certainly knows how to build a stylish competitive football team that’s for sure. Trouble is he’s not even been at Leicester for a year yet so I see next to no chance of him coming to us anytime soon.

  17. R.S.P.C.Arsenal

    Good reading peter,

    However I find it slightly disturbing, w3 are in Groundhog Day again,
    Fans hating manage4 fans loving him, fans hating one playe4 fans loving him.

    To me the club is fucked.

    Only solution would be a cut throat boss wee£ out the shit, or if we can’t afgord that, Freddie and let him do what he wants..

    Clubs in crisis , in fact we have been since 2011..

    Can5 see it changing soon

  18. Champagne charlie


    I think Cesc went ‘home’, realised it wasn’t what he dreamed, wanted to come back, and when that never happened he mailed it in from there.

    If he stayed with us I think he’d have went up a level still and been much more of what he promised. Still some career. Idiotic decision not to bring him back to us.

  19. Nelson

    Ever since Torr scored one or two goals, he suddenly had more appetizer to play as a box to box midfielder. That is the beginning of our midfield problem. During our 22 unbeaten run, we had Torr as DM and Xhaka played ahead of him to distribute the ball. It ended when Torr got injured. Emery should order Torr to station at the DM position. Either Guen or Xhaka can play ahead of him. Ceballos could then play the #8/#10 role. Torr should never advance past the midfield line.

  20. Champagne charlie

    “Rafa Benitez, lol! Never ceases to get a giggle that one, I’d rather Mourinho and that’s saying something.“

    Don’t think it’s the mentioning of Rafa that does it mate, you seem much more the giggly spastic type.

  21. Guns of SF


    I agree with you… was pissed when we didnt bring him back.
    I thought we had the first right of refusal in his contract with Barca
    Stupid Wenger of course.

  22. Graham62

    Gazidis was a douchebag from day one at the Emirates.

    Could read him like a book.

    Gift of the drab, not gab.

    Was culpable, along with AW, for our regression.

  23. Champagne charlie

    Guns of SF

    We did the right thing to put that in the terms of his sale only to pass on it when it came time to collect. Unforgivable move for me, loved Cesc, was gutted to see him in blue.

    Wasn’t it because we had Ozil? Rubbish reason. I loved peak Ozil too, but Cesc could’ve easily played as a CM for us. Stupid handling of that situation, bet Arsene regrets that one.

  24. Guns of SF

    Our attack has always ticked with our creative mids…
    TR7 Cesc Hleb Nasri Reye (winger) Pires etc etc

    Ozil did well his first season but downhill since.

    We are still missing that one midfielder maestro. Not sure DC can fill this role regardless or not his natural position.

  25. Distant legrover

    Cesc would still be a great player today if the game hasn’t changed into a pressing game. It’s why he didn’t reach the heights at Barca because he had to do things his body and style just isn’t suited for. Ditto Ozil with the same problem.

    It isn’t that Cesc never reached his peak, football changed while he was developing and growing from what it was, which fitted him well to something that doesn’t suit his style.

  26. Guns of SF

    Distant legrove

    Good analysis on that… the game has evolved… now mids need to have an engine to press and press. The number 10 is dead… all mids need to create.

    We just need OURS to do a better job of it

  27. Distant legrover

    It’s why Xhaka is suffering so much grief right now because he’s playing in the wrong era (or league ?). This era requires you to run a lot, move a lot, think fast, be always aware of your surroundings. All things Xhaka suck at. 10, 20 years ago he woulda been a perfect premier league player.

  28. bennydevito

    Champagne charlieOctober 28, 2019    20:38:38

    “Rafa Benitez, lol! Never ceases to get a giggle that one, I’d rather Mourinho and that’s saying something.“

    Don’t think it’s the mentioning of Rafa that does it mate, you seem much more the giggly spastic type.



    Ooooh Rafa Benitez, you’re so peng.

    Fact. 🤤🤤🤤

  29. Distant legrover

    Guns of SF

    I think our mids have the ability to perform better than they are right now as long as Xhaka isn’t part of them. And if he is, then the right partners must be selected for him. So that means no Xhaka- Guendozi.

  30. Guns of SF

    Xhaka needs to be a sub, and cup player.

    His lack of athletic ability is the reason why we get overrun in midfield with him tugging and fouling all the time.

    OTOH, he cannot develop to be quicker. He can read the game better maybe but NOTHING can fix a lack of mobility and quickness.

    So, he needs to sit and come on when tired legs happen as a sub

  31. Guns of SF

    IF this is true, Freddie needs to take over now.
    Enough of this wish washy BS. What exactly does Emery do?? Cannot make a decision anymore?

  32. Bamford10


    “Leicester vs. Arsenal. There will be blood – and probably not theirs.”

    Well, it’s in twelve days, so hopefully Bellerin and Holding will be fully fit by then and in the XI. And hopefully Emery will have replaced Xhaka in the XI as well.

    Even then, we’ll still be weak in midfield, but I don’t see it getting “bloody,” as you (giddily?) suggest.

    “The worst is yet to come.”

    I love this idea that a 2-2 draw to Palace is beyond-the-pale, horrible-terrible.

    “The sky is falling! The sky is falling! Palace came back from two goals down!!!!”

    Anyone remember a shitty Newcastle team coming back from FOUR GOALS DOWN when Professor Dipshit was still in charge? I do.

    Yesterday, Rambo Ramsey was so disgusted by a 2-2 draw with Palace that he wrote the following: ““It was never this bad under Wenger. In 22 years. That’s the simple truth.”

    No offense, but this is some of the purest nonsense that has ever been written here. As I pointed out, Arsene Wenger gave the club all of the below, all of which were far, far, far, far worse than a 2-2 draw with a tricky Palace team.

    6-0 loss to Chelsea
    4-0 loss to Southampton
    5-1 loss to Liverpool
    6-3 loss to Man City
    8-2 loss to United
    5-1 loss to Bayern
    5-1 loss to Bayern
    5-1 loss to Tottenham
    3-1 loss to Stoke
    2-1 loss to Birmingham City (2011 CC)
    4-0 loss to Milan
    2-0 loss to Sunderland (2012 FAC)

    People really need to get a grip. It wasn’t a desirable result, but what happened was down to weaknesses in our midfield and defensive personnel, not to the manager’s tactics or organization. And there is literally no chance Sanllehi or Edu are considering replacing Emery at the moment. NONE.

  33. Cesc Appeal

    Distant Legrover

    That’s what I read.

    He’s fearful of a backlash apparently.

    ‘Fearful’ basically characterises Emery as a manager now.

    If Xhaka and the players cannot understand why his behaviour was unacceptable and that he would be lucky to play for Arsenal again let alone be the captain then the whole lot who don’t get it need turfing out.

  34. Distant legrover

    Guns of SF

    We can only hope bro. I know i m tired of seeing those Hollywood passes that takes a decade to reach their targets. Also it’s no coincidence that our midfield lost it’s attacking and assists ability when he joined.

  35. Guns of SF

    Take Lucas T with you Xhaka… and Emery.
    A sissy who cries on the bench- I thought he had more toughness in him.
    Uruguay kid- where is that steel???

    This is the problem with our team…. choir boys always

  36. Un na naai

    Champagne charlieOctober 28, 2019 19:32:34
    UnaaiIt’s not hard to cherry pick the good of managers at their respective roles, but you’re refusing to digest the whole picture and extrapolating that one Liverpool season to be reflective of Rodgers as a manager, period. It’s a nonsense.


    No. I’m not. I’ve already said I actively used to tune into his Swansea team for the sheer joy of watching them play. His Liverpool team for me was the only thing comparable to the invincibles for sheer, breathtaking attacking football and world class goals every single weekend. And now he’s at it again with Leicester

    Every single manager will come with negatives in their approach but for me he has enough positives to turn us into a force again. Maybe not title winners in this day and age but he’d have us up there.

    He took Swansea into the prem
    Took Liverpool to second
    Did an invincibles season in Scotland (I know) and has Leicester in 3rd

    Not a bad record considering he’s only really had one top team during his entire career.

    Yet men like emery, Enrique and the like get the top jobs.

  37. Ishola70

    This is such weak management from Emery regarding Xhaka.

    The players were incorrect in the first place in their judgement if the reports are true that they voted for him as captain.

    This could also be of course that Emery himself wants him as captain still and is using the players as safety blanket.

    Either way as others have said Xhaka is going to be a major downfall for him.

    Weak, weak management.

  38. Guns of SF

    If none of our players got into Xhaka’s ear, then it says it all.
    They are weak. Hell, i think if we had Licht, he would have probably said something not so nice in the locker room to Xhaka.

    This group? Who is going to get into the face of Xhaka? Ozil? Auba?

    Maybe Laca???

    Sokratis? Not sure… maybe


  39. Ishola70


    “Well, it’s in twelve days, so hopefully Bellerin and Holding will be fully fit by then and in the XI”

    Did you see Holding get turned inside out against Vitoria in the Europa League by one of their forwards?

    Always had time for the guy but he is being massively over-rated now.

    He is talked about like the second coming of Alessandro Nesta.

  40. Un na naai

    Goooo compare


    2-0 loss to city
    3-2 loss to Chelsea
    3-1 loss to Leicester
    3-0 loss to wolves
    3-2 loss to place
    5-1 loss to Liverpool
    3-1 loss to Liverpool
    4-1 loss to Chelsea (euro cup final)
    1-0 loss to Sheffield United
    1-0 loss to BATE borisov
    3-1 loss to Man U
    3-2 loss to Chelsea
    1-0 loss to West Ham
    3-1 loss to Rennes

    He’s only had 15 months in the job 😂 😂

  41. Ishola70


    If the reports are true about Emery in relation to Xhaka best give up on him real soon no? Like now.

    He is ducking out in making his own managerial decisions or just as worse is continuing to rate Granit Xhaka.

  42. Distant legrover

    Bamford 10

    Most of the teams you listed were bigger and better teams than us at the time. And bigger and better often has the upper hand. Yes Wenger suffered against better teams but more often than not he whooped the small teams. Emery has won 6 in his last 17 PL games ??? Can you imagine Wenger with a record like that, even at his worst ?

  43. Champagne charlie

    Brendan Rodgers sets the bar low for Arsenal, he’s not a caretaker manager and he’s not in the same realm as an Allegri.


    We’ve lost 2 two-goal leads in 10 PL matches this season.

    More than we have done in the last 6 years combined. There’s your improvement you spatula.

  44. Cesc Appeal

    Jeez, picture on the internet of Gallas stropping, Van Persie celebrating scoring against us for United, Kozz stripping off his shirt for the Bordeaux reveal and now Xhaka telling the fans to fuck off.

    Brief history of Arsenal captains.


  45. Un na naai


    When you consider some of our wins and draws have been by the skin of our teeth. We’re it not for Aubameyang and Lacazette that list would surely double

  46. Champagne charlie


    Oi give it a couple of days, solid chance another Liverpool drubbing is incoming.

    Add it to the list Emery.

  47. Bamford10


    I agree that Holding is not the second coming of this or that, but he has more pace than Luiz or Sokratis, so he can probably help us at the moment. Further, your saying that Holding isn’t all that great (despite so many pining for him) only further underscores my point that Emery isn’t working with great options.

    As for Emery asking the players what they think about Xhaka, I might agree that he should simply make the decision himself, but it’s not like asking the players what they think is some horrible, terrible, unforgivable approach to a team problem. What’s wrong, ultimately, with him asking the players for their input? Very little.

    In truth, the mob is out for blood and they will find reason to see any and every decision Emery makes as unacceptable.

  48. Un na naai


    You’re not going to change my mind and I won’t change yours. I’m convinced he’s going to win something big one day. Until then he will over achieve at clubs like Leicester and neither of us can prove how good he will be until he gets the nod at a club with money and status again.

  49. Un na naai

    Champagne charlieOctober 28, 2019 21:43:53
    UnaaiOi give it a couple of days, solid chance another Liverpool drubbing is incoming. Add it to the list Emery.

    What?? With our improved defensive organisation and tactical frame work? No question

  50. Guns of SF

    If they dont make an example of our Xhaka things are going to go haywire.
    The Ozil situation will keep festering even more…

    He needs to be stripped of the captaincy. The fans are the ones who pay all these millionaires – we are the blood of the team.

    How dare he pull some of that shit on us? We can cheer or boo if we like… we are the ones shelling out $ to support the team

    Xhaka needs to be made an example of. End of… if he remains captain this shows just how out of control we really are….

    PS, he also needs to apologize. then get stripped of the captaincy.

  51. Ishola70


    Both you and I know that Xhaka is an unsuitable captain for Arsenal.

    The majority of fans know he is an unsuitable captain for Arsenal.

    Most of the pundits give out that he is not captain material.

    Many regardless of captaincy think he shouldn’t be in the Arsenal XI at all.

    It matters not what his footballing team mates think because their judgement is obviously clouded on the matter.

    So what is Emery about here? Why does he fail to make such an obvious decision off his own back?

    You can only infer from this that he is weak. A weak sitting dog.

  52. Cesc Appeal

    Lot of anger and mockery online about this whole vote thing

    With an international break coming up if the results don’t improve Emery could be gone

  53. Pedro

    Per Mertesacker was also a great captain, even in his final season when he was fucked. Immense behind the scenes apparently.

  54. Ishola70

    He must be a bit of a thick Spaniard to keep allying himself with the most error prone weakest player he has in his first XI.

    Comical and tragic for him really.

  55. Guns of SF

    Telling the fans who are booing your performance- and telling them to fuck off is unacceptable. Its an insult to all fans in my book. The disdain, even if the booing was not right, is beyond the pale.

    Xhaka will never be able to gather the trust of the fans again. Couple that with his abilities and he is done… toasted. His days should be numbered.

    The players have to ask, why is it the fans boo? Xhaka needs to ask, why does he get so much flak???

    For him to ignore the obvious, or he must be plain delusional. It baffles the mind.

    Edu and Co, need to tell Emery, strip the captaincy ASAP.

    Send a strong message to the fans- no more insults, no more lack of leadership

  56. Redtruth

    Arsensl allowing a 4-2 lead against Spurs to slip away.
    Arsenal leading 2-0 at halftime against Spurs before losing 3-2.
    Who can forget Arsenal scoring in the 8th minute of injury time against Liverpool then conceding a penalty in the 9th minute of injury time lol

  57. Bamford10

    “He’s representing Arsenal as a captain and it is unacceptable to think you’re as big as anything at the club. [Xhaka’s] behaviour was atrocious, and I don’t see him having a future at the club” – Charlie Nicholas

  58. Ishola70

    Thanks for the quote Bamford.

    So this is in reality the end for Emery yes?

    The players are running the show here not Emery.

  59. Ishola70

    We will know soon enough.

    If Xhaka walks out as Arsenal captain again any time soon we will know that Emery is not carrying out his duties as Arsenal manager/coach. Failing to do so.

  60. Graham62


    This has nothing to do with Wenger any longer.

    Emery is culpable for some atrocious decision making.

    Yes, I totally blame Wenger for where we were when Emery took over.

    What has materialised since then though has shown us all that we took on the wrong man.

  61. Bamford10


    “So this is in reality the end for Emery yes?”

    No, it’s not. Sanllehi and Edu will decide when Emery’s time is up, and I seriously doubt their thinking at the moment is anything akin to the hysterical ravings one is seeing from the mob. As I said this morning, Emery will likely be here through May barring a massive turn for the worse in results.

  62. Ishola70

    It can be difficult for a manager/coach if there is a more than sizeable clique in the dressing room and a problem player is at the centre of that clique.

    But Emery has to man up and break up the clique.

    If he doesn’t it’s to the detriment of Arsenal FC.

  63. Bamford10


    “The players are running the show here, not Emery.”

    No, that’s not right either. Asking players for their input ≠ the players running the show.

  64. Ishola70


    You haven’t really answered your thoughts on the Emery/Xhaka situation.

    If we continue to see Xhaka as captain or for others even in the first XI then Emery must be failing in his job no?

    It would mean he is continually failing to resolve a major problem in his football team.

  65. Ishola70

    Distant legrover
    ” seems like the type to kiss ass”

    Yes he does seem to look to have that creep element to him.

    Maybe he appeals and bolsters Emery’s vanity.

    Silly man Emery. Very silly.

    Although these recent subbings off with Xhaka from Emery may indicate that their relationship is straining.

    The bigger problem may be now as others are implying is player power over manager/coach.

  66. Redtruth

    Before Wenger’s arrival, based on trophies won, Arsenal were the second biggest club in England behind Liverpool.

    Therefore, it’s a statistical fact that the club went backwards following Wenger’s 22-year reign, not forwards.

  67. Bamford10


    No, I mean “speaking”. And I don’t know what you mean by Emery being “an inconvenience”. He will likely be here through May. Whether he stays beyond that — I am generally of the view that he shouldn’t — will depend a little on how the team does from this point on. I have spoken on Emery many times here at this point. See my many previous comments if you are wondering what my view of him is. Cheers.

  68. Distant legrover


    I think managers sometimes can underestimate how much a fan knows about his team. The fans have known for a long time that Xhaka is a bad fit yet the manager continue to shove him down our throat, until this debacle happened. Eboue too with Wenger.

  69. Bamford10


    I have said many times that Emery was wrong and is wrong to select Xhaka for anything — the XI, the captaincy, etc. I have even gone so far as to say that continuing to start Xhaka is a fireable offense, an opinion I more or less stand by. I personally am in the hopes that Emery is going to see the light re Xhaka. If he continues to select Xhaka, he very well could be out of a job before May.

  70. Bamford10


    He wasn’t “shoving” Xhaka down the fans’ throats. That’s nonsense. The players themselves voted Xhaka captain, and what would Emery know (or care, for that matter) about fan sentiment re Xhaka prior to the first boos ringing out a few weeks ago? Nothing. He literally would know nothing about the fact that many fans don’t like Xhaka.

    So, no offense, but that narrative is bunk.

  71. Ishola70

    Distant legrover
    “I think managers sometimes can underestimate how much a fan knows about his team. The fans have known for a long time that Xhaka is a bad fit yet the manager continue to shove him down our throat, until this debacle happened. Eboue too with Wenger.”


    There is definitely an element of fans being viewed as know nothings by players and managers. They give out to the media all this fans are the salt of the earth stuff and many players do indeed realise and respect the importance of fans but many don’t like it when fans are seen to be having an affect on the actual playing side. Who would I suppose. It’s a gentlemans club all said and done these team squads and they don’t like it when it is seen to be being disrupted from the outside.

    Wenger was quite dismissive of fans views himself.

  72. Graham62


    Your perceptions of what is serious and what is not are very confusing.

    Do……you…..see….the …..present ……situation ……as……being……nothing……more……than ……a……storm……in……a……..teacup?

    You know, the Xhaka/ Emery debacle.

  73. into the red

    What an alright clusterfuck. Good summary of the chain of terrible decisions which have led to this. The fact that the hierarchy even thought about giving him a new contract after he blew the simple task of picking up a few points at the tail end of the season to qualify for the CL speaks volumes. And the inept preparation and performance in Baku should have buried Emery forever, figuratively speaking.
    It only confirms that feeling you get that this is Arsenal no more. Yes, they have the name, the stadium, the kitsch accessories and hoarding, but really they are a US corporate outfit who have no idea of their market or their core function. There is no discernible centre to the club, one which embodies what the club stand for, or the values they expect. The whole edifice feels like a takeover and replacement of an identity by people who never understood what that identity was, or how it was obtained. The evidence is in that utterly cringe-inducing statement they issued after the pathetic Baku performance, where they tried desperately to sound like fans, proclaiming how ‘we are the Arsenal’, as if they had the faintest idea of what it meant. But the PR team had written it for them, in a desperate attempt to sound as if they had something in common with the fans. They have nothing of the kind. The distance between the club boardroom, heirarchy and management, and the fans is enormous, a canyon, and has been that way for years now, at least since the Kroenke debacle that Dein initiated for his own personal ambitions. That is went sour for him is nothing compared to how it soured the club. There is no understanding between fans and club, they are miles apart, the current dissatisfaction won’t be easily healed when you have such distant, clueless people banking huge salaries and wondering what the fuss is all about. And a PR chat with Josh won’t suffice either.
    Arsenal aren’t the only English by any means to have suffered this kind of takeover, the tragedy is that they never needed it, they were solid, bankable and in control of their own affairs, unlike the desperate clubs who needed a ‘saviour’. They could have built on that, kept their identity and been an exception to the oligarch craze. But that was when they were a football club, not the foreign arm of a US corporate cash cow whose core business is business, not football.

  74. PhD2020

    Cesc AppealOctober 28, 2019 21:04:05
    Now Emery is apparently asking the Arsenal to vote on whether they want Xhaka to remain as captain.
    If true,that’s leadership right there in yer face!! 🙂


    Comedy hour at Arsenal..Some things never change…Sigh..

  75. Nelson

    “Now Emery is apparently asking the Arsenal to vote on whether they want Xhaka to remain as captain.”

    That would disqualify Emery as the coach. He doesn’t even know what is best for the team. He doesn’t know how to set up the midfield, with or without Xhaka.

    Imagine if Xhaka remains the captain, the fans boo him every time he touches the ball. If Xhaka wants to gain some respect, he should apologize to the fans and resign as the captain. Maybe then the team could convince him to be the vice captain.

  76. Bunga Party

    “It was never going to end well with Xhaka, which then begs the question why did Emery select him.”

    Cuz emery is a clueless cunt?

  77. Bunga Party

    Honor the vote, Emery!

    There are no redos in Democracy just because you don’t like the result.

    Honor the vote!

  78. China1

    I don’t agree that opposition pressing would have any impact on a peak cesc

    If you got close to him he’d turn you on your ass and break in behind you. Like all elite ballers, he could not be pressed

    Post Barca cesc is another story as it looked like his flame for football was starting to fade

    Cesc was a great leader. He was a battler on the pitch and he put the team on his back with incredible consistency and performances on a weekly basis.

    Glorious player in his prime

  79. PhD2020

    And to ram home the point-Unai having spent £100m on Leno,Tierney,Sokratis,Luis and Torreira-the defence has become far worse under Unai,as Gambon has alluded to in his tweet.

    A visual inspection of the xGA kind of upholds the fact.


    So much for being better organised and more defensively disciplined!!

    And the pearler from Mr Guy 🙂

    Mid-game during the Arsenal vs C.Palace game…

    Bamford10October 27, 2019 17:46:27
    “Excellent. 2-0. We are playing with intensity, energy and urgency, and this on both sides of the ball.Fuck off to all who have said that Emery has brought nothing to the club or that he has moved us backwards. Fucking nonsense.Dominating possession too. Sharp passing. Good stuff.”

    Comedy classics..Just awesome play…Keep dropping those pearlers-guy!! 🙂

  80. salpardisenyc


    You seem to be struggling with fact most frustrations aren’t the 2-2 draw vs Palace, its a culmination of results that have dropped since early April with no end in sight.

    Its habitually getting the starting XI wrong. Inability to cut into the final third with his MF tactics and selection leaving a potentially nuclear attack wasted. Miraculously defensively on par with Wenger’s ultimate banter side with a rolling XG that illustrates a man bereft of idea. Spineless decisions that stink of insecurity where man management is concerned, a death nail in football management and definitely Emery’s undoing w/ PSG.

    Were on an even exchange at this point from Wenger’s ultimate low in footballing terms to Emery’s Arsenal, seems to be getting worse. Really struggling with how anyone can term this modern or disciplined when we feel steeped in a brand of football played before jet engines existed.

  81. Champagne charlie

    Yea that mid-game comment aged wonderfully didn’t it, obliterated a sock ten minutes into a home game vs Palace and has since went back to selective ignorance.

  82. China1

    Bamford emery will last until May only if the results improve a fair bit and if the fans decide to allow that

    If the fans turn on emery properly he’ll be gone in a matter of weeks. Raul and edu can’t fight the mob and win. It’s just a question of if and when

  83. Champagne charlie


    Duly noted there Sal but have you considered our first 45 mins against Bournemouth where we were excellent? Or our improved pressing, organisation, and defending?

    Because if not, then maybe football isn’t for you.

  84. Distant legrover


    Making a guy the captain of a team he shouldn’t even be near of, starting him in every PL games despite his limitations and general negative effect on the team etc. I think that’s the coach shoving him down our throats.

  85. PhD2020

    Champagne charlieOctober 29, 2019 00:05:18
    Yea that mid-game comment aged wonderfully didn’t it, obliterated a sock ten minutes into a home game vs Palace and has since went back to selective ignorance.
    I don’t know..What was it last season-“Poverty of players….?”

    This season.”selection,injuries and return to fitness of players”-despite having improved the squad somewhat over the recent summer..

    In between his arguments are,to paraphrase him -‘Get rid of Xhaka,we should come good with the return of players and the right team selection.’

    But what we are now witnessing according to him,is a better organised and more disciplined team.Despite the statistics, contradicting his statements overwhelmingly over an 18 month period.

    Added to that ,no settled first XI or formation over the period in charge,a disjointed team selection process,no footballing philosophy..The stupid play from the back unnecessarily, conceding goals at a rate of knots,marginalisation of key players,playing players out of position,nominating five captains(unheard of in top-flight football) and then throwing it to a democratic vote…Improved squad in the second season,and yet the team is regressing on both fronts..

    Team captain throws a strop,lazily walks off,tells the fans to fornicate off,cups his ears,tears of the armband and shirt and walks down the tunnel.

    Laca &Auba liken a tweet telling Emery & Laca to f* off..Meanwhile,Ozil(one of our 5 captains) ostracised-saying he is going no where,but sends out a tweet along the lines of “You are having a laugh.”

    Yep,we are a more organised and disclipined team for sure,not only on the pitch but off it too….


    Whatever Mr Guy 🙂 is smoking,he can keep it to himself.

    Just different levels of being dense..It’s getting progressively worse.
    But still,worth the entrance fee for comedic value

  86. Valentin

    Just seen a stat that showed that even during the first half that we were winning, Arsenal had less possession that Crystal Palace.

    Seems that the equaliser and the raucous caused by the removal of Xhaka were the jolt that kicked us into higher gear.

    Proof if one more was needed that this team like its manager is reactive and not pro-active. So much for being protagonist.


  87. Dissenter

    The club didn’t handle the fall-out of the Xhaka meltdown properly.
    They should have made him apologize immediately and drawn a line under the whole issue…then dealt with the rest internally.
    Now it’s morphed to an inferno of some sorts.

  88. PhD2020

    Maybe,it’s a question of killing several birds with one stone?

    No,public comment from the club defending him outrightly,or forcing him to make a grovelling apology.

    That sets the player up,to think f”k it -I’m out of here.Literally gets his agent to find him another club,AFC are like..aarghh.Ok,cool..He forces the move,they save money in not paying him off and also winning the PR war..

    Remember,they are also dealing with Ozil..So,trying to see how they can get rid of certain players,that are of no benefit to them in the long run,without having to take a heavy hit(financially) and also lose out on the PR war….But,certainly,there is a degree of political machinations about this.

  89. Spanishdave

    So much for our great attack, they haven’t scored for three Prem games against mid table and lower teams.
    Emery is so poor.

  90. PhD2020

    Toxic environment and toxic management on all levels to be honest..

    Does not bode well for the future..
    Arsenal seems to be that type of organisation now(well once Dein left),where it is all about the power play.Key players,trying to assert their authority and protect their vested interests.

    The footballing side of things,is a mere distraction.Do enough to keep up with the racing pack…Pure and simple.

  91. Champagne charlie

    “Champagne charlie would be devastated were is favourite player Xhaka to leave the club“

    Heartbroken mate

  92. Redtruth

    “So much for our great attack, they haven’t scored for three Prem games against mid table and lower teams.
    Emery is so poor.”

    It’s fuck all to do with Emery, it was fans who were hyping them up…

  93. PhD2020

    RedtruthOctober 29, 2019 00:54:31
    PhDChampagne charlie would be devastated were is favourite player Xhaka to leave the club
    Nah,I don’t think so..He’d be more devastated if the owners in charge were to remain ad infinitum.With no clear direction of what the ambitions are of the club.

    In terms of recruiting a manager of repute,that could elevate us to the next level of trying to compete with the likes of the Man City’s,RM’s,Barca’s of this world.Even,though that might not be a realistic ambition straight away,but surely a plan and a vision must be in place to achieve that goal over a realistic time frame. Dissecting the roadmap into phases.I’ll spare you the phase 1/2/3 philosophy at this point.But,I’m sure you get the overall gist.

    And I’m inclined to agree with him,if he shares the same school of thought.
    Something,I’ve wished for since 2012-in terms of -change of ownership.

    All,we’ve done,is played catch up-with how the game and industry has rapidly progressed over the years,in trying to modernise the club structure from the bottom up,or via a top down approach. More a delayed reactive approach than a proactive one.Always,behind the bell curve on all fronts.

    Always wondered why Gazidis-hot-tailed it to Milan,once Arsene was ceremoniously dumped.Quite telling that!!Anyway,I digress..

    Nothing revolutionary..We’ve just reacted albeit 5 years or more after clubs were ahead of the curve.(even mid-table clubs)..Granted Arsene,held us back..But the leadership comes from the very top…I stand by this.

    Will be very interesting,going forward-how Unai is dealt with by top tier management.

    Clearly the environment is toxic,he’s not taking us anywhere in an upward trajectory anytime soon.The stats have shown us this,the visual inspection has paid witness to that,and now the overall fan sentiment and the media whirlwind is all coming together to reinforce what the general consensus is regarding Unai.More so, as a starting point-with regards to his competency levels and leadership skills.

    It’s whether the spotlight (long overdue)is now turned brighter and more fiercer on the men behind the scenes.

    I’m more curious to see,how the powers that be,handle this situation at the most elementary level.
    That would be,all the more telling in my honest opinion,not just for now but for the long term.

  94. Bamford10


    “{Xhaka is] not actually much worse than any other midfielder we have right now (which is another story), but it’s only now fans have reached their breaking point with him.”

    Good point. While Guendouzi, Torreira and Ceballos are all better options than Xhaka in midfield, the first two are only marginally better. Further, I’m glad you agree that our midfield is incredibly weak. Some people here seem to think we have a top four midfield; we definitely don’t.

  95. Bamford10


    “I’m not shy [Champagne,] you’re just irrelevant. You also have a tendency to lie. Remember when you claimed to have a season ticket and then spent most of the next match posting on here?”

    Good point. Do you still claim to have a season ticket, Champagne?

  96. Bamford10

    “Another manager with this same team will be challenging for the title.”

    One of the funnier things written here in some time.

    A back four yesterday of Chambers, Sokratis, Luiz and Tierney.

    Only Tierney is good enough to start for a title-contending team.

    A midfield of Xhaka, Guendouzi and Ceballos.

    Only Ceballos is capable of starting for a title-contending team.

    A front three of Pepe, Lacazette and Aubameyang.

    Only Aubameyang is capable of starting for a title-contending team, and even at that, he has fairly significant limitations.

    We are a long, long ways from having the personnel to contend for the title.

  97. Nelson

    Ceballos has appealed to the fans to be united. He should also tell Emery not to freeze out a teammate.The fans are following his example.

  98. Bamford10


    “If United finish ahead of us, I’ll never post on here again.”

    As I said earlier, I’d like to take you up on this wager now. Except we’ll reduce the exile to three months.

    Just a week ago you were so confident in your opinions and so dismissive of mine, and yet I can’t help but feel that you are running away from this pronouncement of yours now.

    What do you say, WE? Are you willing to put your money where your mouth is? I’m giving you three points, after all, and you regard the idea that United are as good as we are or better as laughable. This wager really should be a no-brainer for you.