A WengerOut supporter admits the Arsenal boss got it right at last!

Congratulations from a “Wenger Out” supporter by AndersS

Yes, I admit it. I thought we were going to lose to Chelsea by a few goals, and I still think we will not come back to anywhere near winning the Premier League before we get a new manager. But I also think the performance against Chelsea was the most promising for years. For me it was the most promising since we won away at Man City 4-5 seasons ago.

Those of us who remember it will recall that back then we were already firmly established as “the eternal top 4 club”, which lost out in the direct matches against other top clubs, mainly because of tactical naivety and mental frailty. But suddenly, out of nowhere, against Man City we played completely different. We sat back, soaked up pressure, we fought for every ball and we hit them on the counterattack and won the game. I couldn’t believe my eyes. Unfortunately, after the match Cazorla came out and said that the players had got together and decided they couldn’t continue playing these kind of matches the usual way. So they had actually agreed amongst themselves to try the “new approach”.

This was of course a bad omen, because it showed the newfound success formula wasn’t a managerial decision, and soon it became apparent that in spite of the formula’s apparent success, it was not to be used again. Instead we continued with the same old tactics and all that changed was the losses gradually became bigger and bigger and more frequent. Eventually, many of us had had enough of Wenger.

For me the performance against Chelsea was a lot like that match against Man City 4-5 seasons ago. It was a revelation to see the whole team being well organized, when Chelsea had the ball and seeing all players fighting and showing they really wanted a result. I haven’t felt so good watching a game in a long time.

But I also think… It was so different from anything we have seen against top teams in the PL for many years, that you have to ask; “Why the sudden change and how can we continue doing it?”.

If this time it is a product of Arsene Wenger actually changing and adopting a new philosophy in these games, we will see it again against Everton and Man City, and I would actually believe we could get some useful results. If this happens, I will gladly admit, I have been too negative about AW, and I will also believe, we may be able to contend for the PL title.

But having the Man City experience 4-5 seasons ago in mind, I also admit, I still have some serious doubts. Will the Chelsea game prove to be another “one off”, which really just happened because a series “accidental” circumstances made it possible, like:

-Ôzil not being able to play, so we didn’t have Ramsey and Ôzil playing at the same time
– The Ox gone, as he is a player with no defensive clue
– Sanchez on the bench, which probably gave the players selected a timely showing, that they needed a team performance and not individuals to save the day

I am happy to give Wenger the benefit of the doubt, and hope it really is a change. I will keep quiet about wanting Wenger out, and if it proves to be a change, I will be really excited.

But if we come out against Everton and/or Man City with the same old team selections, tactics and mentality, I also hope we can get rid of Wenger, as he really shouldn’t be given more chances.




  1. ThirdManJW says:

    If you’re referring to the 0-2 win at City, that was around 2.5 years ago, although it does feel like 4/5 seasons ago! Haha

    Credit where it’s due, Wenger got it spot on with his tactics, but why don’t we see this more often from him? It’s means that the shocking performance against Liverpool recently, and many more against top teams, become even more frustrating, because Wenger clearly has it in his locker to get his team to play with discipline, to fight, to be organised…but we never see it!

    I’m sure people will think we’re back in the title race because of that, but we know Wenger NEVER learns from his mistakes. Brilliant, disciplined win at City nearly three years ago, and people thought that Wenger had finally figured out how to approach these big games, but we actually got worse after that. Thrashing, after thrashing, shocking performance, after shocking performance, which we saw as recently as the Liverpool game.

    I really hope Wenger FINALLY learns from the performance against Chelsea, but history tells us that he will not.

    1. chris says:

      Before that wining match match at City senior players went to Wenger to say we had to change tactics at least for that match I know that for a fact. Where Wenger will ruthlessly eliminate anyone in – house undermining his power … he will not take on the dressing room. It was also a fact when we eventually went back to a real dmf – where Coq played well for a while. It was also a fact years back when he had a great defence … captain Tony Adams spoke at a meeting of players call on them to defend as a team … not just leave it to the back 4. I suspect it was also true when we moved to 3 at the back late last season – though that I do not know for a fact. Read quotes from ex player after ex player … the man is a great person but has never (never) been a tactician.

  2. Vlad says:

    At least some Wenger haters have common sense, and most importantly BALLZ to admit it when they’re wrong. I salute you, Anders, even though I don’t agree with some of the things you say. Kostantin, where are you at, little weasel?! Come out, come out wherever you are… Daily posts after our back to back defeats against Stoke and Pool, but not a peep since we beat Bournemouth. Coward.

    1. sebastian says:


    2. chris says:

      The problem is we have been right for years and years while he has clung to his obstinate principles and made obvious mistake after obvious mistake (eg at Liverpool). Yes it was a pleasant relief to see sane tactics, a disciplined formation and disciplined attitude. Two immediate questions : a) will he revert to his obsession with winning (only) via beautiful attacking football – thinking we can play every top team off their own park ?
      b) was it the senior players who told Wenger we had to change tactics (?) because I know for a fact that they have had to do so in the past. Read the quotes from ex players – or do you know too little about football ? He has not asked players to work too hard when out of possession (eg. Ozil ?) because he wants then to have energy going forward. It simply cannot be done. Look at the last decade of stagnation and decline.

    3. bran99 says:

      May be the Wenger lovers should accept sometimes when people are spitting truth about Wenger incompetence and cluelessness. One game and the lovers are all over the place hugging and kissing, wait till the master goes back to his normal self, you all gonna disappear and come back after 3 days with a lot of pointless none sense opposing anyone who talks real sense

    4. Lance says:

      That fans disagree with Wenger’s tactics, team selections and playing style does not make them Wenger haters. They just not share his views of Arsenal’s playing style even if he is the manager. Come to think of it, they have been right in many cases, especially in the disgraceful 6-0 loss to Chelsea, 6-3 defeat to Man City, 5-1 hammering by Liverpool, 8-2 thrashing by Man Utd and the 10-2 aggregate loss to Bayern Munich.

  3. Sandeep says:

    We almost have all ingredients in our team only need to put the in right place with right tactics and Wenger gets it right sometimes. Unfortunately he does not do it on consistent base.

  4. McLovin says:

    Yes, finally we did look like a side challenging for the title.

    However, we are NOT in the title race, but we did look like one. Can’t forget we are now 6 POINTS behind leaders, still on negative GD and yet to win away this season.

    And let us not forget that we haven’t won away against a top 6 side in almost 3 years. That is a disgusting stat to look at.

    I still have no high hopes for this season, I haven’t watched a full match since the first 5-1 beating by Bayern back in February. But it’s nice to see we can match Chelsea away even without the contract rebels. Where has this backbone been?

    1. Break-on-through says:

      We need to get a nice streak going, some good fixtures. This was a good point, Mourinho would’ve taken that along the way. We lost against Liv, you’d expect others to do so too. So the Stoke game was a kick in the teeth, but teams will drop points, even the Manchester clubs. If we slowly do our business, things could become closer before we know it. For now we should be concentrating on bringing that workman like attitude into more games, and I think we’d have a good shout at reclaiming our CL place. We went away to two of the biggest, or most difficult grounds. Manu dropped two at Stoke remember, so we’ll know more when they go away to the places we’ve just gone. COYG!!!!

  5. Break-on-through says:

    Wenger’s fingerprints were all over this one. The substitutions were telling, and when Chelsea tried to overpower us with Bakayoko added, after Danny went he neutralized it with Elneny. Also when they went down to ten men, I feared we might get a Hazard sucker punch after going gung-ho all of a sudden, but we didn’t drop our shape.

    I liked Mustafi’s words after the game. Said, if we put put that performance in each week that the points will come flooding in.

    People need to go a bit easy on Mesut, he didn’t play yet there are many of questions on him. When we’re finding it difficult to break a ten man defence, we will need Mesut at that time. It’s just up to Arsene to realize when we can afford to have one less workaholic, he didn’t sign yet so lets use Mesut however we want to use him.

  6. Chuks says:

    great performance but hey!! don’t get carried away because we have seen this drama so many times before.
    I completely agreed with Anders.
    let’s watch and see what happens next.
    Remember Wenger is still in charge.

    1. Spectrum says:

      We KNOW what happens next. We put on a good unbeaten run, have anomalous games like this one on the rare occasion, and then the hapless Wenger reverts to type, starts making irrational decisions, doesn’t listen to advice when things start going wrong, and then things get progressively worse, as other teams put their foot on the accelerator, and our wheels come off.

      We have had thirteen years of knowing what comes next. This season will be as predictable as the others. What gets me is that despite all the fiascos of the past, there are still super optimists who disregard the previous failures and still have unlimited faith that he will “get it right this time”.

      I have been consistent in my view that Wenger is finished, and that will never change. I am not influenced one iota with results like this. We’ve seen it all before. But how easily fans are swayed. Last time I was on here I said we need to keep the protests up and increase them, to ensure a better future for our club. Now the mood alters. Well we’ll see at the end of the season who has been right ( again ). Am I a clairvoyant ? No, but when you’re an Arsenal supporter you don’t need to be.

  7. Mogunna says:

    Only thing that changed is our defense system. Attacking play is not on point, just shuffle like, guessing using what we have, average PL, no top class beside Sanchez who doesnt work for the team as he used to. Let’s be honest and also accept his frustration but he knew the team he joined, he can be the star and sign for another team with top players. He was able to play, progress, get that confidence, all he couldnt get benched by guardiola at barca. So, cant expect having such a team if you sign here nor get excited too fast, we can defend , have this new.warrior on.left flank.and team but no top players, sanchez and a.good.defense aint enough. Look at MU and MC or even.Liverpool. Oxalde went up but.benched. he cant take salah nor mané spot. Couthino is back… We.need seri box.to.box and lewandosky then add draxler and a beast in middle, and we should be fine but indeed a dembele would have been perfect to add to.this 3 players. But years ago, even their we not getting players fast nor right ones past.years.

    1. Spectrum says:

      Talking of higher standards…..Frank de Boer fails for four matches at Crystal Palace and is sacked. Wenger fails for thirteen years at Arsenal and still keeps his job. Who has higher expectations of reaching those standards ?

      1. Admin says:

        3 FA Cups in 4 years not to mention the “Super Cups”.
        How many other Premier League teams have won 3 trophies in last 4 years?

        1. Spectrum says:

          “…How many other Premier League teams have won 3 trophies in last 4 years?…”.

          Your standards are different to mine then.

          Are we now to focus our ambitions on merely winning F.A. Cups and Charity Shields ? Why are we in the Premier League and ( WERE ) in the Champions League, if we aren’t aspiring to seriously win them ? Going by our performances in those competitions, and the board’s priority of revenue raising above on field success – as evidenced by keeping Wenger on – do you think we’re being serious ? Are we any nearer to doing so, or are we stagnating, and even going backwards ?

          Do you think that any MAJOR club would settle for winning cups over league titles and Champions League titles ? Would they tolerate such a long period of underachievement ? You know they wouldn’t. They would have shown their managers the door long ago. What then, makes Arsenal’s situation so unique ? The bizarre cult of Arsene Wenger, that’s what. And therein lies the problem. He and the board have lowered your expectations and lulled you into accepting mediocrity as a substitute for REAL success. Except that even mediocrity is a harder target for Wenger to achieve lately.

      2. Spectrum says:

        A clarification ; I should have said which CLUB has higher standards of ambition ? The one that sacked de Boer after four matches, or the one that keeps its manager on after thirteen years of underachievement ?

  8. RSH says:

    it was a great performance but a season is longer than one game, and this is a game we drew honestly. It was just nice to finally not get battered at Stamford Bridge. Arsenal need to have higher standards than not dropping 3 points away to Chelsea every 5 years.

  9. summerbreez says:

    We were only a couple of millimeters away from winning the game Chelsea lost composure and should have lost a man early on and eventually he did get the red We/Arsenal need to assert ourselves/themselves on the pitch in every match we will rule the league cause a couple of millimeters is not hard to adjust We need to remain focused united and push with torque as a unit to the end of the line of every match I am confident if we maintain the fundamentals and core of our win /nearly win at Chelsea’s we would rule the league

  10. colonel says:

    Even in this seemingly positive write up, the negatives still shout out.
    Some how, even if it was a good performance, credit should go to the players for deciding to play differently, not to the coach.
    What about the FA cup, charity shield. It was the same manager, not magic.
    We can’t celebrate the cup, then be surprised at this performance.
    Instead of blaming Wenger all the time, what about asking the players to put in a shift like this every game day. At the end of the day, no matter how good a manager is, he does not play on the field.
    Please, just celebrate. Just take a moment to savour this.

    1. Spectrum says:

      Anyone would think we had won. We didn’t. And two more points dropped. That is the perspective we should be concerning ourselves with. Also, our record against the top teams is appalling. This Chelsea result, although our attitude and play was better, merely continues that.

    2. Lexynal says:

      @colonel. THANK YOU very much. I am glad people like you can still read a lot between-the-lines. It is negativity shrouded in some positivism. Whether we like it or not…Arsenal have amassed more trophies in the last 3-4 seasons that any team. It is NOT by coincidence. Credits to the players – but certainly MORE to the coach. We all definitely want to see bigger and better trophies (EPL, UCL). However, it only shows it has NOT been only gloom and doom situations. I am sure many clubs secretly covet such achievements that we have made in the last 4 seasons. Given the recent spendings at Everton, Liverpool – and (wait) Spurs….what do they have to show for all that?. For those Arsenal fans that will want to continue the negativity, they are more than welcome go support Spurs (more investments – zero trophies).

      1. Spectrum says:

        “More investments, zero trophies.”

        Chelsea, United and Manchester City supporters are laughing at you ( and our club ). Of course investment wins trophies. However it also helps considerably when you employ highly competent, technically minded coaches who can motivate their players consistently and have a good understanding of tactics and man management. It’s why AMBITIOUS boards at their clubs hire these top managers. Is it a coincidence that those clubs mentioned are run by Conte, Mourinho and Guardiola ? Any of which Arsenal had and HAVE, the financial capacity to afford and employ. And look at the table now. Whose teams are on top AGAIN ? Chelsea, City and United !

        Klopp and Mourinho were available for us to target at one time, before we stood back twiddling our thumbs singing Wenger’s praises at reaching the top four. We have the funds but we haven’t the WILL to go after the big names, because footballing success is secondary to profits at our club. And Wenger makes the profits. He sure doesn’t bring the success that truly reputable managers do.

  11. jonfox says:

    A correct and well written article Anders and some great points. However , I cannot share your hope that Wenger will ever change. Based on his entire last decade , he simply cannot and will not. Despite the glory years when we had a physically powerful defence and defensive midfield; the likes of Viera, Petit, Gilberto, Adams, Bould, Keown and also smaller but warrior types like Dixon, Winterburn, Parlour,Lauren etc, he chose to abandon this winning formula to start importing 9 stone dripping wet dwarfs in midfield, mostly injury prone and a list as long as your arm of deadbeat so called CB’s, from Senderos, Cygan, Djourou through to Schillaci, Gabriel and many more. Since Viera and Gilberto left we have not had a physically mobile AND powerful CDM and since Sol Campbell left, we have had just ONE QUALITY OUTFIELD DEFENDER AT THE CLUB in Koscielny. Hopefully, Kolasinac, though early days, may be just the second. IN A WHOLE DECADE! Stupidly rigid 70th minute subs, rather than as the game warrants; ludicrous playing of players in wrong positions, for which he is notorious; catastrophic ingnorance of the vital need for attack/ defence BALANCE, with never two fullbacks up at same time; inability to motivate players to fight, inability to keep them fit, stupid loyalty to long term hospital cases like Diaby and much more besides, too long to list on here. NO Anders , he will never change and I AT LEAST AM JUST MARKING TIME TIL HE IS GONE, when we get a professional, up to date man in charge and stop driftig further and further away from our top rivals. I admire your partial optimism but being a REALIST I cannot share it!

    1. Chi chi says:

      Has changed to 3 at the back

  12. Liam says:

    Burnley got a result against Liverpool does that make them title contenders. Sick of Wenger in supporters because we can win ten games on the trot then cock it up like every season, everyones happy at the moment but lets see with the christmas and february crumbles.

    1. Chi chi says:

      Wenger hasn’t spend 400 millions like Mourinho & Guardiola in the last 2 years

  13. Jeremy says:

    It’s a loss (thrashing) and draw against two top teams. We have three others ( Man U, Man C and Scum) coming up.

    Without taking credit away from the team, well done.

    But seeing how AW is…. Let’s see what happen next.

    1. Spectrum says:

      Seeing what happens next isn’t measured over a handful of matches. It’s assessed after a whole season. And that is where we invariably fall far short. Time and time again.

  14. ENIAS TOM says:

    The game at Chelsea gave me alot of hope and i feel vindicated coz i was very positive about the match. the boys played so well and deserve our support.

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