I tweeted this in the heat of the moment.
‘Any other manager would be gone after this’
I deleted it. Weird thing is about 15 people messaged me the same thing. Every single one of them was right.
Mikel Arteta’s fall from grace has been stunning. Only at Arsenal. I can forgive another loss, but not the way he delivered it. The mix of arrogance, stubborn behaviour, and poor delivery was something else.
Xhaka. Willian. Auba. Lacazette. Hector. All in the starting 11. A show of defiance from a manager that ignores history, performance, merit, and behaviour to play his favourites with the biggest contracts… getting punished deservedly by the bums the fans KNEW would fail him? It is NOT unbelievable. It was the easiest script to write. Too obvious to be a plot worth exploring.
I don’t want to bag on Granit, he’s a good guy in the grand scheme of the total bums we have at Arsenal… but he ended Wenger, he ended Emery, and now he’s close to ending Mikel Arteta. Well, at least under normal circumstances he would.
Arsenal weren’t totally shite, let’s be straight on this one. We came out for the second half strong. Granit then moved on the game like deviant that gets off on negative attention, the way he always does, and landed a red card for violent conduct. It wasn’t even retaliation to an attack, it was a reaction to one of his classic slow late tackles.
We went on to lose from there.
It wasn’t a downed tools game, though you might remember it that way. We had 18 shots, 6 on target. That’s a powerful 90 for us in the Premier League (lol). But once again, it was ruined by a senior player that’s been ruining managers for what feels like a decade.
Arteta had choices. He chose not to take them. He wants to die on the same hill as Emery and Wenger. It is clown-like behaviour. It lacks maturity. It is bereft of managerial EQ. It is the move of a suicidal deer actively moving towards the headlights.
He’s not going anywhere though.
I kind of get it as well. How many managers can this group of players down before you start taking action? Problem with this line of defence is Arteta picked the bums despite having better options. He’s trying the same thing we’ve seen 100 times before. An innovator, a man of ideas, principles, and energy… slotting Granit back into his starting 11.
I don’t really read too much into the gossip, but Chris Wheatley reckons Mikel has fallen out with David Luiz. I mean, colour me fucking shocked. I wrote when he signed that he was a player that has downed big managers in the past and as soon as things aren’t going his way, he strops out. You saw it for the City game, he was dropped, then he played like a sulky child. Arteta approved that move. Inexcusable.
Willian, he’s just gassed man. No pace, no hunger… I cannot understand how a whole team of coaches thought £250k a week made sense. It was a sackable decision. What makes it worse is that Arteta can’t admit defeat, it’s December and he’s still flogging an old horse like it has something to give. Couldn’t he just call Petr Cech and ask what he thought of the two Chelsea rejects?
Here’s the thing, bag on Mikel all you want, but any technical director worth his salt would not have allowed those moves. They were traps. Set by a dirty super-agent. Arteta is a capable coach who should not be allowed near transfers. But we let him anyway because we are addicted to making bad decisions.
If the manager isn’t going anywhere, which he’s not, then we need to make changes elsewhere. Ralph Rangnick is without a job at the moment. Is there anyone better in Europe at setting a vision, building infrastructure, and looking after young managers than him? No. There’s not. Arteta should have his power taken. He’s not a rockstar, he’s a talented kid in the garage learning the guitar, someone at Arsenal needs to find him the support he needs and stop shirking the big decision… Edu is not it. Own it.
We’re now at the stage where an incredibly opinionated blogger is looking at another Arsenal wreckage without much of an idea where we go. I don’t even have a bad opinion to give. We are relegation fodder. The fans are out of belief. The squad is a wreck. The manager is out of his depth. No one at Arsenal has the guts or know-how on how to make the project better.
My suggestion? Back to basics. Prioritise hunger, effort, and suitability to the system.
Fans will forgive young kids faster than they’ll forgive the bums. We’ll happily wait 3 years for a better Arsenal if the plan is exciting. We just need to see a proper plan and some action fast.
My worry? No one has the ability to control this mess. It’s really sad and incredibly disappointing to watch on a personal level. This hurts, deeply. 10 years of weak leadership came at us pretty fucking fast, right?