Gooooooood morning! Arteta dropped some intel about some of the reasons we struggled early in the season.
DEADWOOD DEEPSTATE. Think I stole that from someone on the Arsenal Vision Podcast. Now it is mine.
The allusion was that certain players that aren’t here now were the problem.
I cannot imagine which part-time social media manager on £350k a week that could have been?
I cannot imagine which binned players might have been causing those issues?
I cannot imagine which players exiting might also have had a role?
The mess of the squad at the start of the last season led to dramatic decisions. Those decisions against big names were obviously going to hit the morale of the squad. You’ve all worked with a dickhead who hands their notice in and determines to burn the house down.
‘THIS PLACE IS A HELLISH VACUUM OF PUSS THAT IS GOING ALL THE WAY TO THE BOTTOM’
Actual quote from Sandra from accounts at my place.
The biggest issue, Mesut Ozil, was a problem because he was the king. Everyone knows that when the King is dethroned, you have to kill him, because their prior power will always be a threat to stability. The German was too big for Arsenal at that point, he was hurt by the rejection, so it was clear he’d be a problem internally and externally.
Form has picked up since we rid the squad of bad eggs. Things have been better since we discovered the power of creativity in our midfield. We controlled games far better with Thomas Partey in the side.
Everyone is whining on about how 23 games of form doesn’t count for anything. Well, let’s see how that pans out next season, but also dig a little deeper into some other elements.
Leicester beat us with their only run into our box. We smashed them at their place.
Fulham beat us without having a shot on target.
Wolves didn’t deserve to beat us chance. Self inflicted Wolves.
Spurs beat us off 5 attempts at our goal and 30% possession. It was palmed off as ‘genius’ at the time, but let’s be real, it was luck as shown by Jose exiting the building a few months later.
Burnley beat us off 2 shots on target.
Everton beat us twice.
Villa beat us twice.
Basically, a lot of very lucky stuff happened against some very average teams this season.
Turn 3 of the above games into more positive results and the last game of the season sees Arsenal in Champions League spots in our worst ever season.
Hardly a stretch, right?
Think how much better life will be if we have a settled squad come the summer. Creative players from the start. An Auba not dealing with family issues and malaria. Young players a season on.
Arsenal will sell a whole collection of players. I’m not sure reading the praise of the manager is indicative of who we are keeping, it’s a negotiation tactic. Do we really think Madrid believe their future hinges on Odegaard? Doubtful… but it’ll pump his price. Same for the players Mikel is saying are under contract. We are less desperate this summer, which will lead to bigger fees (or actual fees).
Arsenal will no doubt try and make Martin a centre piece of our rebuild this summer and I’d agree with that. I’d certainly prioritize him over the Norwich fella at £450m or whatever they are looking to charge for him.
Then we’ll go for a right back, which has basically been a dead position all season. A nightmare for many reasons, but mainly because we’re lopsided when we attack. If we can bring Tierney levels to the right, it opens a whole world of possibilities.
Ryan Bertrand is perfectly acceptable cover on the left (Leicester after him, so should be safe).
Then we need to address that midfield. I have no idea who we’ll look for in that role, but hopefully we have another press resistant player that can move in the role.
Shake out the deadwood this summer.
Have a 6 week preseason and bond the leaner group.
Make sure everyone is excited and knows their own personal plan.
There will be no excuses next season, but I don’t believe there will be a need for them.
The players are backing the manager. Look at the vibes in the training ground video for David Luiz’s send off.
The club is going to bat for the first team again this summer.
I think we’re on the up.
Final word for the Edu story doing the rounds. The gist is he was taking orders from someone banned from Brazilian football for corruption when he was over there. I don’t understand enough detail to give a running commentary, but the basics are pretty clear, he took orders, he knew who from.
- It shows real lack of leadership to keep quiet when things like that are going on. The guy giving orders was behaving like Pablo Escobar from jail. Shocking stuff.
- Subservience to shady characters is clearly part of his operating system.
Speaking up about tough things that don’t feel right is part of any big job. I’d say ‘imagine if that was Arsenal’ but let’s be honest, we’ve seen people fail to speak truth to power in our football braintrust to great cost. Shocking deals, cosy agent relationships, huge wastage that a layman could have predicted.
This story is a bad reflection on Edu, but an even worse one on our leadership. Did anyone check in with people that had worked with him to see if he was a determined leader, or a soft touch people pleaser?
I doubt anything will come of it, but at the very least, I hope Vinai V, Richard G, and Josh K are keeping an extra close eye on who we are talking to this summer. The number 1 interest should always be Arsenal FC, that clearly hasn’t been the case with a lot of the decisions we’ve made over the past 4 years. The weaknesses on show in this story aren’t hard to trace back to some if the things we’ve seen at Arsenal (subservience). It is also a worry that he can be so comfortable working with a man of corruption. It’s a canary in the coal mine. Let’s hope we’re not on the receiving end of one of these stings in the future.