Arsenal fans need to accept they will not make top six claims former Wenger player

Victor Ikpeba has urged Arsenal to forget about the top six this season and return to the basics.

The former African Footballer of the Year was signed by Arsene Wenger for AS Monaco during his playing career, and he has remained a fan of the Frenchman.

He also follows Arsenal closely, having been attracted when Wenger was at the helm at the club.

The Gunners have struggled for stability since Wenger left in 2018.

They are now in their second permanent managerial tenure under Mikel Arteta after Unai Emery failed to deliver what was expected of him.

The Gunners won the FA Cup last season, but they have already been eliminated from that competition and the Carabao Cup in this campaign.

Their best chance of European football now is winning the Europa League, as their Premier League form isn’t one that can help them get a top-six position.

Ikpeba says the club has been on a decline in the last three or four years:

Speaking on Super Sport’s Monday Night Football as cited by, Ikpeba said :”They have not been able to manage this team since Arsene Wenger left the club, they brought in two managers and allowed some great players to leave the club, so it’s all about rebuilding now for Arsenal to get back to their old ways of playing football.

“Deep mentality we know about the Gunners of the past but what I’m seeing in the past three, four seasons.

“I am a big fan of Arsenal, the former manager Arsene Wenger was like an idol to me, he was a manager who brought me to AS Monaco.

“I know his philosophy and from what has happened in recent years, the fans should accept that they have a squad that is not good enough now to end the season in the top six”.

Tags Arsene Wenger Victor Ikpeba


  1. ASK FANS TO BE REALISTIC ABOUT THEIR TEAM? What a vain hope! Realism on fan sites such as JA is as rare as hens teeth, sadly. So many seem to believe that hope equals expectation.

  2. We simply did not plan well enough for life after Wegner and here I would fault the owner, Kroenke. It is now crystal clear there are gaping holes in the organization that are still to be plugged. Scouting, player recruitment, strategic planning, contract management, risk management and development planning for players are just some of the areas we need to get right before getting back to top 4.
    Victor is absolutely correct. We need to forget about the shiny objects, the expensive and exotic players and focus on players with strong, basic, fundamental skills. We have missed so many so many scoring chances this year because players were simply unable to head the ball with conviction, beat an opponent at the dribble or deliver a crucial pass at the right time.

  3. I disagree that the squad is not good enough for top six. Arsenal have quality players and depth at every position (except left back – due to short-sighted move to send Kolasinac packing). What they lack is a philosophy and style of play that is consistent, from match to match.

    While Arsene Wenger was often criticized for his refusal to be flexible or pragmatic in his approach, the Frenchman took far less talented sides to the Champions League 20 years in a row.

    While he was in charge, you knew (barring huge numbers of injuries) you would get the 4-2-3-1 formation and attacking football with lots of flair and plenty of goals. Wenger believed if the tem played to its potential, they could win any match. for the most part he was right.

    Often described by critics as flat track bullies (that’s you, Paul Merson) Wenger’s Arsenal teams did, in fact, struggle to beat the other to five sides away from home in later years for one simple reason – the players on the field for Arsenal were not as good as the players on the field for the other top five teams.

    Wenger knew it. He never whined about not getting enough money to spend, he was a club man to the end; he did what he could with what he had. For a decade, Arsenal punched well above their weight with him at the helm.

    Eventually, the one thing that kept the Wenger Out Mob, both inside and outside the club, from claiming his scalp, was lost. He finished fifth and then sixth. Pundits howled that the club was in decline and had been for ten years. The following summer he was pushed out.

    Four seasons later, neither of his successors have come close to creating either a similar record or a definitive identity for the team. This is not an article to point fingers. Mikel Arteta is a good manager and he is learning the trade, but he has far more quality players than he former boss ever had and can’t come close to matching Wenger’s success with them.

    Unai Emery came, signed a whole first XI of new players for more money than Wenger ever got, and failed. Arteta probably saved his job wit hthe FA Cup win, but after finishing eighth in his first half-season, can Arsenal really say they are improving if they finish in the same spot, or lower this season?

    Thomas Partey, Dani Ceballos, Kieran Tierney, Gabriel, Saliba, Mari, Pepe, Willian, Luiz, Martinelli, Leno, Runnarson, Soares, Ryan and Odegaard. That’s fourteen new players – all supposedly better than what Arsenal had before. And the proof is… they are four places lower than Arsene Wenger’s worst-ever finish.

    The brilliant thing about the Premier League, in fact football as a whole, is the tyrrany of the table. You are as good as the table says you are. Claims that a team is better than its record, used in other sports where schedules are not balanced and top teams can duck tough opponents – that doesn’t happen in football. Every team plays every other team; home and away.

    When did Arsene Wenger ever lose two Aston Villa twice in a season? Wait for it… NEVER! His teams might have been flat track bullies, but they weren’t flat track failures.

    Arsene Wenger is gone – that, for me is sad because the performances of his successors show that the people claiming to have all the answers didn’t. They seized power and forced him out, but failed to match, never mind outperform him. It would have been so much better for Arsneal’s most successful coach, the club, the owner, and the fans, to let him leave on his own terms after playing out his contract. That didn’t happen, and it plainly was not because he was being replaced by someone better.

    Arteta is the manager and suporting him is crucial if the team is going to succeed, but the same mentality that drove Wenger out is still lurking, still pushing the same silly ideas – get rid of this player and the team will magically improve. The problem is Mesut Ozil! The problem is Kolasinac! The problem is… Lacazette! Now the the problem is Hector Bellerin!

    The problem is; the people making decisions at Arsena lack the courage to own those decisions. They lurk in the shadows, cynically leaking lies to pundits about this player or that; watching the fans gobble up the garbage they spew and keep making the same mistakes, over and over and over; never getting called on it.

    Until those idiots either stop or are held accountable – until the fans realize that the club is more than the men in uniform and on the sidelines, Arsenal has no chance of ever approaching former glories.

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