Posted on October 27, 2014 by ADMIN

Market Forces – And why Arsenal SHOULD NOT sack Wenger

Should Arsene Wenger be sacked? by TB

I guess it is a sign of the times that ‘football’ is likened to ‘trading’ as a fellow ‘results business’. The Casino Economy meets The Premier League – even at the Arsenal!

It’s all about winners and losers after the Market paradigm, Murdoch’s Sky TV and Global Capital marched into town. Whilst there are clear benefits generated by all this – after all, how else would we have Arsene Wenger and his unique contribution to football with Thierry Henri, Pires, Vieira et al right up to today with stars in waiting Alexis, Ozil, Ramsey and all our talented youngsters – I believe there is also something very unsavoury about it. Something fundamental to the soul of football is lost in this ugly process.

Football in England in the Premier League is now very big business. It is unrecognisable to the game I watched as a boy. The Football Club was once a beacon of local identity and community; the peoples game now its all about big money, global markets and foreign ownership as club names and colours are changed to satisfy markets other than traditional supporters and ordinary supporters are marginalised and priced out of watching their local club. The national team declines rapidly as fewer English players are in the game and previous national treasures like the FA Cup lose their popular appeal. It’s all about the EPL and the Champions League. Fans are totally unrepresented in the running and decision making of their Clubs (unlike in Germany and Spain)*. Managers are hired and sacked with obscene regularity as the financial stakes and kudos of Premier League are hiked higher and ever higher with the owners of Chelsea and Tottenham behaving like spoilt children wanting a new toy every season in this ‘results business’. There are no black or female managers in the EPL. Racism, sexism and homophobia are still part of footballs culture. The Market rules and there is no regulation. *Read this article by the excellent David Conn – another good reason to vote Labour next year

All this is accepted blindly as being the norms of football for no other reason than it is what the Market wants and does (sic “…like ‘trading’, football is a results business”) – indeed these values are lauded and held up on high so that we now reach the point here when even a truly great manager is being subjected to a witch-hunt by sections of the media and so-called fans who question his tenure of his post and ask what has he got to do to be sacked. And I say what has he done to deserve to be treated with such disrespect? Lose 1 game out of the first 9 League games, qualify for the European Cup and now in second place in their group with strong chance of making the play-offs! A matter of a few months ago we won the FA Cup and the Charity Shield!

The performance of a great manager is viewed through the short-sighted prism of the Market Trader and in this ‘results business’ it is deemed that he should be sacked after the poor start to the season and, if he is not to be sacked now, only a top 4 place can keep him in his job for next season!

It is ironic that someone who created the ‘top 4’ as a measure of success (a trophy) and astonishingly – under, at times, extreme financial handicaps against the likes of City and Chelsea and building a fantastic stadium – has achieved this for 18 consecutive years (more than any other manager) should according to you boys be now subjected to this achievement as a minimum requirement for him to keep his job next season! Indeed Mourinho, the odious and grossly disrespectful one, brands this amazing achievement as a specialism in failure! There is a strange sleight of hand here as a great achievement is now redefined as a minimum requirement for Arsene to keep his job.

The quality and spirit of his teams play, his philosophy, his past and recent achievements, and his unique contribution to English football – all goes out the window. All that matters is the performance over the first 9 League games (W3D5L1) – suddenly the world is in crisis – hysteria and mob rule breaks out – the man is too old (only 65) and has lost it – he is a failure and should be sacked… some fall over themselves to proffer the criteria that should be put up to decide whether he keeps his job or not this season?

Why is this happening? How have we got to here? Why are these people and sections of the media banging on about this now and baying for his head on a platter after only 8 League games? Here’s some possible pointers as to why he has become a target:

*The first of the Johhny Foreigners to invade these shores and enjoy success.

* His age – how can anyone carry on working at 65 – he has lost it!?!

* The poor start – only 3/9 wins in the league after the bar set high by the FA Cup win

* The so-called ‘failure’ of the last 8 years before the Cup Final win.

* Its his 65th birthday – the media jump on a story line

* Not resigning Cesc (Oh the pain of it!)

* Not signing another defender and a DM

* The British trait of wanting to knock successful people down.

* As the rewards grow so too does the infusion of the ‘results business’ mind-set to football and the life span of a Premier League manager increasingly shrinks.

* The last man standing amid the carnage of managerial sackings – the last icon – ripe to be brought down by sections of the media and so-called fans – as a man to be got rid of. How can anyone be resistant to Market forces – you can’t have someone leaving the job of their own accord – his very existence threatens the man-hood of the Market paradigm as it tightens its grip on our beautiful game!

Of course – not all people in the Football Industry say this:

Kenny Dalglish says he can’t understand the criticism at Arsene Wenger

Or Steve Bruce of Hull

Or Alex Ferguson

Or Harry Rednapp

And how about Lord Sugar too

Even the new MBA Football Industries gurus with their sophisticated mathematical models designed to measure managerial success in the EPL cannot criticise his record as a Manager…

Have a read of Tim Stillman’s excellent piece in yesterdays Arseblog in which he observes disturbingly how the fully U.S Corporate, Market driven, results business mind-set has already arrived in town at the Ems and this week gave its full backing to Arsene to bring more success to the Club…

…and as an aside it is interesting to note that they have invested in the latest cutting edge ‘Moneyball’ thinking to aid the Clubs scouting and game preparation (Billy Bean is a big Arsene fan)…

I put it too you – do you really want to jump on the ‘results business’ manager merry go round of a Chelsea, Spurs, Fulham or Cardiff – or do you prefer the Arsene model? Is one defeat and a disappointing start to the season enough reason to set off all this talk of sacking him or do we cut him a bit of slack and give him his 3 years to finish the job?

I know where I stand.

I think he should be given the opportunity to complete his 3 year contract without all the baying for blood whenever things don’t go smoothly. After all he has done and achieved – I believe he deserves and has earned that level of respect and dignity. I believe good human values should survive in the Market place – indeed I argue that the Market would function even more effectively with an enhanced culture of good, decent values and respect for those who contribute so much to make it work.

Stan Kroenke and his gang may lose patience with Arsene but surely they can’t be that stupid. Sacking Arsene would hit them where they would feel it the most! This thinking reveals the one single factor that sets Arsene out as being unique in English (European) Football and partly explains why I believe he is almost un-sackable right now – it’s because Arsene IS Arsenal. He is a massive part of the ‘brand’ that the club sells into new markets around the world. In Arsene and Arsenal’s case, a football manager is – in the world of a global business something more than just a football manager – and for that reason I believe that he will not be sacked but will serve out his contract and the retire gracefully and hopefully with a few more trophies in our pockets.

Enjoy him whilst you can…you wont see the like of him again in many a lifetime.

Terry Barry

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82 thoughts on “Market Forces – And why Arsenal SHOULD NOT sack Wenger

  1. windrider007

    You need therapy son. Calm down and drink a couple of beers.

    Opinions divided. What do you think? Thumb up 34 Thumb down 37

      1. goldfish27

        In everything in life there must be a balance but for now its Profit(shareholders happy) over trophy(fans happyness) and in accounting where one side is less the other side then there will be problem at the long run…..shareholders make their money from fans and when this fans are not pleased and gets angry….please put the mathematics together

        Rate this comment: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 5

        1. almostawinner

          I used to like Wenger & will never for a moment forget his achievements with Henri, Invincibles, migration to stadium etc.
          Yes, he was a truly great manager once.
          And yes, we are not experts.
          But I cannot believe that what I have seen over
          the last 5-6 years (insufficient buying in transfer windows, selling players to other big teams in the same league! etc etc) is in totality forgivable.
          In totality, selling RVP, not buying Fabregas, these are incomprehensible to me.
          And statements such as we could not find anyone good enough to buy : those are just not credible.
          They lead me to believe I cannot trust what he is saying anymore (professed not to have heard of Cazorla etc ). And once you cannot trust what
          he is saying, it’s all downhill from there.

          The article claims “short sighted prism” : well we’ve had several years: it is ingenuous to say its only because of the 8 games this season.

          The writer suggests we should be happy with top 4 and CL for many years: but I want us to improve: stagnation is not a cause for celebration. Is that wrong? Should we not be more ambitious? Are you saying we should stay happy with top 4 and not dream or expect more?

          “The quality and spirit of his teams play.. all goes out of the window”: No! I miss the quality of true Arsenal. I want that beautiful game back and I do not believe Wenger is the way to get it back. That is a sad conclusion I have been forced to accept after years of hoping it would not be true!

          The writer again mischaracterises our criticism as being based only on the last 8 games: simply not true! Year after year we’ve watched him botch up chances to strengthen the team, to rotate so players wont get injured (and others lose their skills waiting on the bench).

          He should not stay beyond the end of this year:
          we gave him many many chances. He is no longer the great manager he once was.
          No person is unreplaceable.

          Yes, we will not see another Arsene: but we will have glory again & I am sorry but it will not be with Arsene.

          Rate this comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  2. Budd

    The best post this year. If I would read one post like this every year here then this site is not totally doomed. Kudos for you, sir! You have won me.

    Top Gooner!. Agree or not?: Thumb up 70 Thumb down 24

      1. 61 never again

        Agree great read but it still won’t stop these little spoilt brats who haven’t never seen their team finish outside the top 4 thinking they know what’s best for our club and criticising us akb for realising the stability out club is in and staying positive and keeping the faith COYG once again great read

        Top Gooner!. Agree or not?: Thumb up 38 Thumb down 22

    1. muffdiver

      He has won u ?
      Hmm, I question your validity as a prize.

      Opinions divided. What do you think? Thumb up 15 Thumb down 17

    2. Disturbance

      I agree that football has been turned into a business and that Arsene, has done a fantastic job there. There is no denying he is probably the best servant this football club has ever had, but the business model has been a bit to easily served to Wengers credit.

      Ivan Gazidis and the board gave Wenger all the time in the world and all the support a manager can get. Wenger never feels the pressure of being sacked, because even if he gets demolished 8-2, 6-0, 5-1 and so on he would keep his job.

      It’s a blind statement to say, give him more time because of past success. We’ve given him almost 10 years to deliver a scrappy FA cup. And at the moment Arsenal is as capable as Chelsea in the transfer marker, but we are yet 9 points behind in just 9 rounds.

      Football is about the results today, and it’s a real shame we cannot use the fact that Englishs 2 most successful clubs Man U and Liverpool are shadows of themselves to cruise through the top 3 in the PL. Bad Fitness, preventable injuries, bad tactics, bad performances are all down to the manager and in this business environment managers get payed 8 million a year to deliver and when they don’t they get sacked. It’s the nature of the business.

      Opinions divided. What do you think? Thumb up 16 Thumb down 30

    3. Pythagoras( but you can call me pi)

      Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

      Out of tune?. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 32

    4. terry barry

      Thank you for those kind words.

      I think a further point is that people tend to expect too much in life. It is near impossibly to compete against the likes of Chelsea and Man City which is never appreciated by critics of Wenger. For this reason people will condemn themselves to always being disappointed/angry/over critical/unhappy with their lot. People need to get real and enjoy what they have rather than complain about what they can’t have. Terry Barry

      Rate this comment: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

    5. terry barry

      Thank you for those kind words.

      I think a further point is that people tend to expect too much in life. It is near impossible to compete against the likes of Chelsea and Man City which is never appreciated by critics of Wenger. For this reason people will condemn themselves to always being disappointed/angry/over critical/unhappy with their lot. People need to get real and enjoy what they have rather than complain about what they can’t have. Terry Barry

      Rate this comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  3. NY_Gunner

    @TB
    Brilliant article. Deadly break down and a damn good read. Thank You.
    Now get ready for the ad hominem attacks in 5,4,3,2…

    Top Gooner!. Agree or not?: Thumb up 31 Thumb down 13

    1. terry barry

      Thank you for those kind words.

      I think a further point is that people tend to expect too much in life. It is near impossible to compete against the likes of Chelsea and Man City which is never appreciated by critics of Wenger. For this reason people will condemn themselves to always being disappointed/angry/over critical/unhappy with their lot. People need to get real and enjoy what they have rather than complain about what they can’t have. Terry Barry

      Rate this comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  4. Thando

    The only thing we will miss about wenger is that he is the best financial accountant for arsenal but on the feild he sucks

    Top Gooner!. Agree or not?: Thumb up 40 Thumb down 20

      1. muffdiver

        I speak for all the minions of mordor: we have had enough, really cant take it anymore: if I pay to arrive at london euston at 8am an arrive at 9 – I deserve a refund- curse u london transport!

        Opinions divided. What do you think? Thumb up 15 Thumb down 10

      2. Thando

        @ny gunner wenger is no longer a winner, the only thing we should do is to offer him something else at arsenal

        Opinions divided. What do you think? Thumb up 11 Thumb down 15

        1. NY_Gunner

          @Thando
          Sure, when his time is up. Until then, let him complete his contract…

          Opinions divided. What do you think? Thumb up 15 Thumb down 14

          1. th14

            As if anyone here has a say in the matter.
            He will complete his contract regardless doesnt mean we wont question his decisions, were not sheep.

            Opinions divided. What do you think? Thumb up 16 Thumb down 5

            1. Pythagoras( but you can call me pi)

              You mean there is no hope of Wenger leaving earlier than the end of his contract 😯 😯 😯 you just broke my heart 🙁 😥 😥 😥

              Opinions divided. What do you think? Thumb up 10 Thumb down 13

            2. NY_Gunner

              @th14
              No one said you couldn’t or shouldn’t question his decisions dude.

              Rate this comment: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 2

        1. NY_Gunner

          @joho
          The term”Young Brutha” was used for Senzo Meyiwa, the deceased, who was a dude…

          Rate this comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    1. Big Gun

      does 49 undefeated league games mean anything to you…

      Opinions divided. What do you think? Thumb up 16 Thumb down 12

      1. rd_gunner

        Yes it does and that is why he should be replaced by sosmeone who can bring those days back for us. Point is simple. Wenger’s sacking has as much chance of leading to further failure as reversing the trend and being successful. I would still try because sooner or later he has to go..so why endure the pain longer?

        He should be sacked after this season !

        Rate this comment: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 8

    2. Ljungberg's Cool Red Hair

      Author:

      Arsene is Arsenal…

      This has to be a f*ing joke

      Rate this comment: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 10

  5. illiterate

    Reinforce where needed. Play players in their preferred position. Have squad dept to rotate players and all which seems gloomy will not be that gloomy after all. That being said , is it a little too late now?

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 2

  6. rkw

    like arsenal`s football under wenger a piece with some excellent insights and a lot of tired argument.. “The quality and spirit of his teams play, his philosophy, his past and recent achievements, and his unique contribution to English football – all goes out the window.” in this list the only thing that makes any sense is his past achievement…thats 10 years ago…its like saying you shouldnt be too critical of the state of detroit because back in 1975 it was one of the most prosperous cities in the world to live in…suggest you take a stroll down 8 mile and check out what a few years of market driven decay actually feels like

    Opinions divided. What do you think? Thumb up 15 Thumb down 8

    1. Budd

      Your argument is totally flawed. Detroit is on its knees financially while Arsenal is financially prospering. By your logic, Toyotas and Kia’s are the trend today as they win a lot in pure marketshare hence financially wise. And that is true. But no one would argue to the fact that compared with a Corvette or a Shelby these market winners hold no candle. Give me any day a Vette even if I know that this would ruin me financial is something I would have said when I was a bit younger. Because back then it didn’t matter. These days I would have a Prius saving me money every month which is doing basically the same thing : from A to B.
      Wenger will leave, there’s no way around it. But before he leaves, I want us to have a board which understands this game, so that they can plan and simply provide to Wenger what he needs. So that he can focus on the football alone and leave the profit making to the board.
      Unfortunately as you all heard, board has no clue, has no plan. If Wenger has a plan then board is having a plan, if not they wait for Wenger to have a plan. AFC waits a lot in terms of business from Wenger but he is a football manager and judged by these results alone while all the greatness around Arsenal which he has built goes unnoticed. This is not fair.
      Arsenal is a world brand now, a thing missing 5 years ago let alone 10 years ago. It is an enterprise which happen to be profitable enough for investors to keep their money in it. Bayern had a stroll 10 yrs ago when they had to rebuild financially the club and look at them now.

      Opinions divided. What do you think? Thumb up 13 Thumb down 7

      1. Mick The Gooner

        What I don’t understand about Bayern is how they make so much money… Their ticket prices are some of the cheapest in Europe – their matchday revenue is nothing compared to ours. Bundesliga TV money is no where near the level of PL TV money. A PL team like Arsenal should be much more marketable no? But Bayern’s commercial income is huge. Way bigger than ours. How do they get so much? We need to take a leaf out of their book. More than one in fact..

        Rate this comment: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

        1. goldfish27

          Its simple wine more n make more money from revenue n sponsorship….Arsenal would have been richer if they have been winning trophies…in our modern world nobody or company does business with a looser…ask yourself why man-u remains the richest club in england….Arsenal learn from Dortmund and sack Wenger real success if far from wenger…. One always thinks what he has is the best till he goes to the market and finds out his been using scrap…Wenger out still goes on

          Rate this comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 3

          1. Budd

            Not really significant. They lost two UCL finals in a row and every other team would have called it a day. Not at Bayern. They buy locally and they buy only at the moment the player is primed and renowned. Look at Lahm. They loaned him to Stuttgart and the second Fergusson took an interest in him they brought it back. Bayern loans players mostly in Bundesliga while we do that mostly in the inferior leagues. They just add one marquee signing at a time (see Robben, Ribery,Alonso) and keep the core team intact. I am not sure they pay king like salary although I am sure they pay better than us for their top players.

            Rate this comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

      2. rkw

        not really..for most of the period in which detroit was declining the big 3 were making big profits (of course they had to be bailed out in 09 but that was because they had become banks as much as car producers but thazts a detail)…so content “board” declining “club” seems to describe detroit pretty well to me

        Rate this comment: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 2

        1. NY_Gunner

          @rkw
          No comparison whatsoever. Detroit was a victim of corruption run rampant on every political level.

          Rate this comment: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 2

          1. rkw

            A really stupid comment …. Having actually lived in the place and looked at its demise

            Rate this comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  7. Big Gun

    The problem with the fans wanting Wenger out including the ones on this forum, is that most of them do not even live in England. Where I live, the only teams people support are either Man United, Liverpool, Arsenal, Chelsea and perhaps City and Spurs. For us, it is a completely different scenario because not only are we confronted with opposition fans when watching the games at bars, stadium screens etc, we are confronted with opposition fans at work and everyday of our lives and a lot of these other fans will align themselves with whatever team is currently on the glory train. Chelsea is a prime example. Before they were taken over by Abromovich, I cannot think of meeting one Chelsea fan. When he bought them and started bringing in top players and winning trophies, all of a sudden these plastic glory hunter fans began popping up all over the place. On top of it, most of them are arrogant about it and cannot fathom that if it were not for their bottomless pits of money, they would not even be supporting them.

    The reason why we get so irritated and upset with fans like these, is because these clubs they are supporting, offer money driven, immediate success and satisfaction, the latter being what life in general has evolved into – we want things and we want them now. City, Chelsea, PSG, Real Madrid, Barca and now Man United are all offering this type of model and yes it has a lot to do with global branding. Arsenal definitely is one of a kind because we had to wait 8 long years with the same manager before we won another trophy, but I agree 100% with the article because during that time, we had built a massive new stadium and also lost a lot of our best players, a major stumbling block in this transitional phase – YET Wenger was able to keep us in the top 4 and keep things afloat – a great achievement not many managers would be able to pull off and I really think he deserves our support until his contract expires because let’s be honest, things are better than they were 5 years ago.

    Top Gooner!. Agree or not?: Thumb up 24 Thumb down 10

    1. Jim A

      @big gun I haven’t posted in over a month but I guess after seeing your post I have to get on and say that was a great post and TB outstanding original post.

      Rate this comment: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 4

      1. terry barry

        Thank you for those kind words.

        I think a further point is that people tend to expect too much in life. It is near impossible to compete against the likes of Chelsea and Man City which is never appreciated by critics of Wenger. For this reason people will condemn themselves to always being disappointed/angry/over critical/unhappy with their lot. People need to get real and enjoy what they have rather than complain about what they can’t have. Terry Barry

        Rate this comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

    2. rd_gunner

      @ Big gun: Wenger is not doing charity..he earns 9 million a year, and for that kind of money he needs to do more than just ensuring 4th position. In fact 4th position is also not a problem for me. The problem for me is that the team has stagnated or rather regressed over the last 7-8 years.

      Do we play attractive football- No

      Are we fighters who grind out results? No

      Have we shown the spirit and stood toe to toe with the big teams ( at least once in a while)?- No

      Are we improving in terms of the results?- No

      In successive years, have we shown signs of improvement in CL ? – No

      Every fan (who is not deluded) will only have “No” as an answer to all the above points

      Then what the hell is your point?

      I don’t get the whole point of people saying “Wenger is doing his best”..doing one’s best definitely includes plugging the obvious gaps- which we see remain unattended year after year- which come back to haunt us repeatedly. Tell me how many years has wenger said at the end of every season that we suffered because of injuries at crucial times in the season. I mean how long can u say that..every season???? Does not make sense to me at all. I will not throw insults at the guy to make my point. the guy has done us a huge favor by keeping us up, but he is too old, outdated and most importantly stubborn to lead us back to the glory days. Let’s build a statue and be done with. the world is a ruthless place, and as a club success in the football field has to be our aim. And I am pretty sure, this is the same reason, wenger used when he shipped out viera, kept dennis as an unused substitute in the CL finals and subbed Pires- you have to make sacrifices to do what sis right for the club and the right thing for the club now is to let Wenger GO !

      @NY_gunner: don’t waana pick on u but responding to each and every post doesn’t make ur case any stronger 🙂

      Rate this comment: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 9

  8. Brada b

    I dont care what anybody say #FACK AW! ! & I didn’t even read that long arse article! !!!

    Opinions divided. What do you think? Thumb up 18 Thumb down 17

    1. NY_Gunner

      @brada b
      Kind of figured common sense was beyond your comprehension…

      Opinions divided. What do you think? Thumb up 18 Thumb down 9

  9. SaveArsenal

    WTF are you smoking???
    Alexis and Ozil are ‘stars in waiting’

    An obvious AKB who thinks that every good player on the planet was ‘made’ by Wenger.
    Like Henri, Pires, Vieira ‘et al’ wouldn’t have been great players at any club.
    Stupid reasoning they all had talent and would have been a great success wherever they went.

    Never read a bigger pile of $hit on this site, article or comment and that is saying something!

    Opinions divided. What do you think? Thumb up 17 Thumb down 15

  10. Gigi2

    very well written, congrats, keep it up,
    but i would seriously if i were aw, would keep a list under my sleeve, he needs to pass the torch and that person will have a HUGE weight on his shoulders

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 4

    1. terry barry

      Thank you for those kind words.

      I think a further point is that people tend to expect too much in life. It is near impossible to compete against the likes of Chelsea and Man City which is never appreciated by critics of Wenger. For this reason people will condemn themselves to always being disappointed/angry/over critical/unhappy with their lot. People need to get real and enjoy what they have rather than complain about what they can’t have. Terry Barry

      Rate this comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  11. Mick The Gooner

    To be honest, with Chelsea, City, United and Liverpool all challenging us for 1st-4th place, with Everton and even Tottenham not too far behind, the challenge of staying in fourth place looks even more difficult in the long term.

    Chelsea, City and United have plenty of money, and Liverpool’s owners, unlike ours, are actually paying for their stadium expansion, so they won’t be too far behind us soon.

    Our hard work in giving ourselves a new platform to compete on isn’t certain to bring success, but it’s certain of one thing – we’re much better off having made the move to the Emirates than if we hadn’t done so…

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  12. Gigi2

    OT (regarding the reason why Santi or others night be rusty from arseblog)
    I do wonder if the manager might be tempted to mix things up a bit this weekend for the game against Burnley. I know it’s early to be speculating about a team for Saturday, but with no Capital One Cup we do have to think about the whole of the squad rather than just the first 11-13 he seems to always use. If you want the likes of Campbell, Podolski and Rosicky to make an impact in games against better opposition, you have to play them at some stage.

    You can’t expect them to come off the bench having had a minimal amount of minutes and find the rhythm of a game. There’s a balancing act needed and part of the manager’s job is to to ensure that when these players are required they’re a) match sharp enough to do a job and b) in the right frame of mind when their time comes.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 0

  13. mark

    A great article, that makes some great positive points about AW. What it doesn’t answer is why the majority of football fans and pundits, who analyse the game to varying degrees of anality every week say we need a robust DM and a couple of defenders.

    It doesn’t answer why our manager has a habit of putting on late substitutes (too late).

    It doesn’t answer why our manager doesn’t rotate the squad properly.

    Or why we have so many serious injuries.

    Or why we seem unable to defend from corners.

    Or why we sell our best players.

    Or why we didn’t buy Fabregas.

    There’s probably more. For me though, the managers failing is what appears to be stubbornness and occasional arrogance (which showed itself in that awful BBC interview).

    Many can see the obvious simplistic failings of our team, but we seem to have a manager who refuses to carry out the obvious (like having enough defenders) year in year out.

    So by all means it is great to celebrate his positives of which there are many, but there is a reason fans are getting frustrated, and it’s not simply about results, it’s about how we should be seen as a club no-one wants to play, we should strike fear in other teams, but we often lack character and confidence.

    Teams have ‘worked us out’ and know how to frustrate and beat us, but we don’t adapt, we carry on doggedly as if we know no other way. That’s not the mark of a great team, that’s the mark of delusion / arrogance, and I for one don’t like it. In fact not many people do, hence why we aren’t perhaps given the plaudits we think we deserve!

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 3

    1. rd_gunner

      @Mark: You said everything I wanted to say. It’s time to bestow the highest possible honor on wenger, build a statue, and look forward. This isn’t the Arsenal which pulled me into football!

      Rate this comment: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 3

  14. Bobshinery1

    Viera, Henry, Pires might not be a great player if not for Arsenal. Which coach would have turn Henry to a striker, even if he does, he wouldnt have be patient enough when Henry doesnt find the net earlier. Do you think if REYES has enough patient and stay at Arsenal, he wont be a great striker? Many people say that Arsene cant develop a young talent anymore,
    The fact is that, he has too many talent at is disposal to develop which wont be easy. Had it been 3-4 players, you will see the difference. Take Walcott, Wilshere and Ramsey as an example of the only player he was developing, all this player would have been a world beater today. But because of financial restrain, he doesnt have much to buy worldclass and mix it with young talent, but now that he has, i think he deserves to be given a chance and let him finish his 3yrz.
    My only problem with him now is his Tactics #winks#.
    Pardon my English, not my first language.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 5

    1. Pythagoras( but you can call me pi)

      Are you talking of the same coach that is making the best no.10 mediocre?? The one that can’t adress his teams needs?? the one that hasn’t defeated a certain coach we all hate in 12 meetings??? Is that the coach who deserves more chance?? after 18 years at the club?? 🙁
      You are lost pal, very very lost 🙁

      Opinions divided. What do you think? Thumb up 14 Thumb down 8

  15. Sango

    You are either a football manager or financial manager. You can’t be both and execute them all well. Though I am grateful for Wenger’s financial management which gave us the Emirates I am very critical of his approach to football management. He looks clueless on this front as he has put all his wits on financial management. Of which I second Moreen on this one, ‘specialist in failure’ yet I hold him on high regard (as I said) on the way he has kept financial stability of this club. For that I have no qualms in him being handed these last three years (extended contract) as a bonus to do as he wishes. He has done both, great & Poor.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 4

    1. Budd

      Unfortunately our board got lazy because they have seen Wenger is also good at math. They simply wait for his input (and mostly because he has to track record to show it) and then make a statement of intention.
      We need a competent staff at the AFC not some bunch of people resting on Wenger’s financial competency and get the profit in the end of the day.

      Rate this comment: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 2

  16. Thando

    OT: guy have you noticed that ox is a big game player?ac milan,bayern,liverpool and manu but is sh*t when we play so called small teams

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

  17. davidnz

    I did read the article
    but did not find anything new.
    It is a classic AKB point of view.
    Justifying failure to win any thing
    of any real value in ten years despite
    being the 5th richest club in the world.
    And if that is your view..respect.
    The WOB brigade can easily produce
    articles which “prove” that for 7 years
    Wenger has given up all hope of winning the EPL
    and who knows the ECL is light years away.
    The Owner, the CEO, the Manager and the board regard
    4th place as the most economically sound paradigm.
    Winning is not essential.
    38 league games minimum 8 ECL games is enough to
    run a club. Trophies are a bonus.
    It is all very logical I am sure.
    I just have to practise celebrating 4th place.

    Top Gooner!. Agree or not?: Thumb up 23 Thumb down 5

    1. Adienl

      5 years back when I became a fan we used to play some really great football, even when we didn’t win, and it always was a learning experience to watch Arsenal. I never cared about trophies, just the style and philosophy of our football, as I’d just started to integrate the game into my life.
      Now when I compare the last two years with those intital years when I started supporting, I find that we have regressed even though we won those cups. I still can’t pinpoint the reason for these changes..

      Rate this comment: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 3

  18. samuel@justarsenal.com

    Terry Barry, I want “The British trait of wanting to nock successful people down” reframe as, The world trait of delighting to see successful people fall down. This mentality of being delighted to see an icon collapsed, is a world wide attitude. Is the icon that will make sure he or she doesn’t fall by remaining standing on his feet. In this wise, Mr Wenger is not the falling kind. If he were, he would have fell a long time ago. Besides, the Arsenal board trust him and I will not be surprised to hear them offer him another contract extension after the expiration of his current one. Let all the critical Gooners please try to calm down, and remain calmed down. Arsenal will beat Burnley, Anderlecht and Swansea City convincingly before the international break.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 5

  19. NIKK

    Agree with the writer, sacking Mr Wenger is not the best option. Just imagine if a new manager comes in and spends millions on a top defender, defensive midfielder and a striker…our season tickets and club merchandises and beer prices at the stadium etc etc will all shoot up!

    No thanks! I m happy as long as we finish fourth!

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 14

    1. mark

      Season tickets are already the highest in the league, so there ain’t much justification for making them higher.

      It’s not even about spending massive amounts of money, because the money is there, no Wenger seems obsessed with proving you can run a club on X amount of money, and sod the consequences.

      That is what I think Mourinho meant by ‘specialist in failure’. There is no hunger to win of the type shown by Chelsea or other teams, it’s all about looking good and again, sod the consequences.

      I’d rather we gave another manager the chance to do something, but that wouldn’t fit with the ‘4th is success’ philosophy.

      It comes to something when you are resigned to your club not winning the league, when they have the finances and foundations to do so, but seem hell bent on NOT winning.

      Crazy times..

      Rate this comment: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 3

  20. fred cowardly

    Too much for me to read. I dropped out of school when I was 14. Not keen on reading, that much anyway

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 3

  21. goldfish27

    One of the most foolish post @ Big gun……a winner is a winner and a looser is a looser…who have asked Old wenger to spend over the odds to buy players…his sick and have problems……with the current squad he can do better…simple
    1) Buy needed player at the right price to cover needed position..
    2) Play player at their right position
    3) Play player base on performance and not favouritism
    4) Rotate the squad
    5) Promote good young player to fill up the debt
    6) Play the right formation and not a formation just to accommodate some players
    7) Accept and make correction
    8) Make the right substitute at the right time…
    When all this are done pls tell me arsenal won’t do well….

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 6

    1. Budd

      I bet you have no proof of any of the points you come with. Other than that it is loser because looser is something different.

      Rate this comment: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

      1. DaveJay

        That easy huh?

        So we haven’t been playing well. Yet we are 3 points behind title challenging champions Manchester City.

        Get some fukking perspective.

        Rate this comment: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

        1. DaveJay

          Sorry Budd – replied to the wrong comment, should’ve been the fool above you.

          Rate this comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    2. Big Gun

      SO I’m guessing you are at every training session and management meeting with a telekinetic link to Wenger’s brain? You have no idea what is going on behind the scenes, what happens at training etc etc and why Wenger makes the selections and formations he does. If my comment was foolish then yours in borderline retarded. I am looking at the bigger picture here and as far as I’m concerned Arsenal is doing much better than we were 5 years ago, in terms of finances and pitch performance. We have two recent trophies as testament to this. If we had dropped out of top 4 and still no trophies, then I’d say you might be onto something, but the FACT is that Arsenal are improving, not declining.

      Rate this comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  22. Ljungberg's Cool Red Hair

    @Big Gun.

    I don’t live in england, true, but i think that it’s even harder to be an away arsenal fan because people alway’s ask me why i’m supporting ( this are my friends words ) such a crap team that never win’s anything like arsenal (notice how damaged our international reputation is, that at least in muy country).

    My only answer is that i love the club. Not Wenger, not a particular player. The club.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 4

    1. Budd

      So why do you give a fu ck about what other friends ask you why you support Arsenal? If is a crap team then props to you for staying with them in the bad and good times.

      Rate this comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  23. DaveJay

    The reason there are no female managers is because of sexism? You should be reporting for the BBC.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

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