Arsenal have a HUGE problem – Fix it!


There is a little caveat to this piece: It is that I do not in any way claim that I know exactly what is the entire cause of Arsenal’s problem(s). Neither am I privy to the inner workings of the club. I am only an observer from the outside.

When Arsene Wenger closed business in the summer transfer window with only Petr Cech as his addition to the team, he sent out a clear message to the world: Arsenal football club is fully prepared and ready to perform to expectations this season. And It was obvious that we were self-aware of being one of the biggest favorites to win the EPL title this term. However, Fast forward to about 6 months later, and we would have been far out of the title race, had it not been for the fact that the other big clubs have been very inconsistent themselves. Whether this season is turning out to be a major failure, we will only know come season ending in May. But it is a statement of fact the team is terribly under-performing at the moment. And this is symptomatic of a big problem at the club.

However little an observer from the outside is able to know, he still can discern when the club is having persistent problems -when there are recurring issues with the level at which they should be playing and competing. It is called the “eye test” –what and how you see the team playing on the pitch on match day. Sometimes also, you get comments from insiders (i.e players and officials) explaining what they know to be the problem.


Arsenal has been under-performing for the past couple of months leading up to the woeful performance at Old Trafford. Amidst the inevitable global outrage that followed, I can remember some people who kept on repeating the mantra that it was only just “a game we lost to Manchester United”.

“It’s not like the season is over”, they said. And yes that is correct. Even the reaction that followed may have been unnecessary. However, what this class of “optimist” failed to see was that; it wasn’t so much about the loss as it was the manner in which we lost the game and the context in which that game was played.

From the Manchester United game, it was easy to see what the problem –or at least a part of it- is: Shortage of self-belief and fighting mentality.

And as if to further confirm this, after the subsequent immediate loss to Swansea at home, we heard Alexis Sanchez -an insider at the club- come out to explain to us what he knows the problem to be: Shortage of self-belief and fighting mentality.

It’s all good for us to try as much as possible to remain “positive” about the whole situation; to think that the problem isn’t such a big problem and that we shouldn’t over-exaggerate and worry too much after all. But I’ll tell you what – we will be burying our heads in the sand if we think like that. Why? Because the problem is real, and it is a huge monstrous lingering problem!

Players have come and gone. We’ve even made upgrades in the last three seasons. But this same problem has remained a characteristic of our teams for about 10 years now. The two FA cups we won recently gave some of us hope that this problem is gone for good. But almost unsurprisingly, the same problem has resurfaced in a familiar way.

It is a popular idea that the best approach to solving a problem is to admit first that the problem exists as a real problem, and identifying the root-cause of the problem itself. So rather than making excuses for under-performing, rationalizing or glossing over the issue and wearing rose-tinted glasses, I suggest we accept the fact that there is a problem and we need to completely solve it as quickly as possible. Once and for all!

But then, how is the club going to solve this problem? I do not know.


Tags Alexis Man United Swansea


  1. So Wenger almost signed Saul Niguez from Atletico Madrid instead of Elneny until Thiago broke his leg and Simeone called the deal off. Then he was suppose to follow that up with Isco but Zidane blocked that as well as both clubs were facing transfer bans so they didn’t want to let players go. If this is indeed true then why did we settle for Elneny and then not even play him?

    1. Because now Wenger has an excuse not to buy a high profile player like Isco in the summer

      1. Wenger must win us the game today..I have lost sleep after the Swansea lost.the only thing that can cheer me up and keep us in the damn race is a win at spurs today.nothing less. .not even a draw would be good enough. Wenger needs to save our season or he should leave come end of the season.. I pray that we win today and Leicester slip up at Watford… Fingers crossed. I still have a little hope left in me.just shocked by the way we have performed recently. We should be at the top with a 5 point gap

  2. usmanov : all those upgrades and despite the FA cups: we still have that mental frailty, the fear, the lack of self-belief. i’m 100% sure this is transmitted to the players by wenger. players have left and new ones have come in (with good attitudes & fight in them at the start like we saw w sanchez, gabriel etc). but i’m sure they get dispirited once they realise that the guy in charge is a mental case who is so deluded he thinks we can win PL w/o buying worldclass striker or CDM backup. who thinks subbing in flam for coq versus barca is a good idea. or taking campbell off vs swansea is a good idea. the doddering professor has lost it and must go. he is the one fixed invariant of the problem.

    1. “..he is the one fixed invariant of the problem.”

      No one can argue against that fact. @almostawinner

  3. Wenger is that Problem!he has lost confidense,he don’t know who to buy,who to sub!!!I said this before that we didn’t need to buy Elneny,Wenger bought him but he doesn’t trust him,why?look now we are stuck with Ramsey but instead we could go for Xhaka but as he was costly Wenger opted for cheap,Panic buy!!Elneny is a good player but not an upgrade!did u analyze Wenger reasons for subng off Campbell?not match fit,ooh tired…Walcot keeps playing is he Match Fit?

  4. I believe Elneny is at least an upgrade on Ramsey..
    After 8years Ramsey can’t do the most basic thing;PASS!!!.he is just so terrible and bang below average..infact, because of Ramsey alone I always wish Wenger is sacked bcos most reasonable coaches will never play Ramsey…He is the major problem in our midfield..Can’t Wenger just see that already?
    Can’t he ask himself “Can Elneny do worst”???
    Now Ramsey will play again today and I bet he can never handle Dele Alli and Eric Dier, once again he will leave Coq isolated and humiliated!Wenger is Arsenal’s kryptonite

    1. Passing seems to be a difficult skill for some reason. Even Sanchez struggles with it. Perhaps the only competent passers in our team are Cazorla, Ozil, Welbeck, Koscielny and Mertesacker.

      1. The simplest thing to do is often not the easiest thing to do.

        Passing is simple, but not easy. That is why I always laugh really hard when people belittle the ability of teams like Barcelona who use simple-short-ball-to-feet passing so well to do just about anything in the game.

        1. And then there those who disrespect Mesut Ozil because “he doesn’t do any another thing other than that to pass the ball“.

          So what he doesn’t dribble like Neymar or score like Aguero.. he isn’t Lionel Messi either. But he creates a gazillion amount of chances (our strikers aren’t even scoring) and comes up with 18 assists (so far) and 5 goals! He is our best player this season and arguably the most valuable player at the club.

          We cannot afford to lose him at all.

    2. Not just Ramsey, Wilshere as well
      Both were outclassed and outshone by a DM also known as Alex Song .
      In fact Alex song combined his job as DM with CM.
      Guess who Arsenal fans used to blame for cock-ups?
      Alex Song

  5. A well written article. Sums up pretty much everything i had in mind including the fact that solution lies within the club only and not amongst the fans: We are just outsiders afterall, in a way atleast.
    Anyways, we have been given chances one after anothet to be back in the race and todays match seems to be the last of it. Win and we are staright back in it, lose and we are barely in it.

    1. “..including the fact that solution lies within the club only and not amongst the fans..”

      The sooner some us understand this, the better for us and our health. Lol.

      1. Yeah mate! For starters, stop thinking about all the players we could have signed, should have signed and what players we will need to sign! Now if u r past this the next step for better mental health is dont think of past results , like manu 3-2, southampton 4-0, red cards against chelsea and so on! But its easier said than done!

  6. This doom and gloom has caused is to forget another reason we might be losing today.EARLY
    After Chelsea trashed us last two seasons(6-0)…Mert came out and said ” we don’t like early kickoffs”…in other words, “we lost bcos it was too early and sunny”lol..
    Everything points to another loss for us today but I just hope we get a win cos Leicester might drop points again today,,we need some luck

  7. Henry said it before the season started that we needed four players in four . We all know he believes we cant win the league with Giroud, and the other three?? well I think it included a player like Cazorla for our midfield (since Santi is aging??) .. A WC DM tp battle with Coq.. and a defener who is Koscienly 2.0 anyone?? Matt Hummels?? Jerome Boateng?? Varane?? so we can have two tough CB’s?? Wenger and the world slammed him, I could recall fans on here saying he should keep quiet that his job is diff..Well now he’s said what he thinks bout the fans being let down and very angry like never before. and still Wenger has the nerves to say Henry is in no position to say how the fans feel?? for pete’s sake this is a man coaching the U21 and working inside the club,the club he has his best years with a statue of him outside it and some of ya’ll still thinks he’s not indirectly being our mouth piece?? there must be something really wrong before Thierry Could’ve said all he said!! and Wenger is centered all around it. I rest my case

    1. Henry’s is a perfect example of an insider coming out to explain to us that there is indeed a huge problem in the club at the moment… And then Arsene Wenger chooses to bury his own head in the sand! The irony of that.

      Alexis Sanchez and Thiery Henry -that makes two insiders (player and staff). These guys are/were champions. They know what a champion team feels like e.g Barcelona, the Invincibles… the only person who seems not to remember anything about all that is Arsene Wenger.

    2. “I could recall fans on here saying he should keep quiet that his job is diff..”

      If the fans can delude themselves into thinking like this… you can only imagine what goes on at the club (management and administration)!

  8. 5 REASONS WHY TOTTENHAM VS ARSENAL IS THE GAME OF THE SEASON!1 A DEFEAT WILL END ARSENAL’S TITLE HOPE!Arsenal travel to White Hart Lane knowing that a defeat would virtually end their title chances, a conclusion many have already reached following embarrassing performances in back-to-back defeats by Manchester United and Swansea.2 IT WILL END WENGER’S EXCUSES IF SPURS WINS THE GAME AND THE TITLEWenger’s excuse for failing to win the title for the last 12 years has mainly revolved around the greater resources of the likes of Manchester City and Chelsea.What could the reason be this time if Tottenham or Leicester wins it? Arsenal’s£192 million wage bill is more than £80m greater than Tottenham’s and £130m more than Leicester’s. No excuses! !3 A TOTTENHAM WIN WILL OPEN A REAL TITLE CHANCE FORTHEM!A Spurs win on Saturday would leave Arsenal six points behind Tottenham andextend the club’s dismal run of form to four defeats in a row in all competitions. It will end their title hopes and open the title hopes for Tottenhamsince they look fitter, hungrier, better organised, more focussed, more togetherthan Arsenal this season. Arsenal will NEVER catch Spurs if Spurs open a 6 point gap.4 THE END OF WENGER AT ARSENAL!Wenger has spoken in the past about how he might have stepped down had Arsenal not beaten Hull in the FA Cup final in 2014 to end a nine-year trophydraught.Well the same must surely apply this season if he allows Spurs to win and for Spurs/Leicester to overtake his team and win the title. He must resign or be sacked!5 WENGER WILL NEVER WIN THE LEAGUE AGAIN IF HE LOOSES TODAY!In a season in which Manchester United, Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester City have all struggled enormously, Wenger has no excuses if his side fail to take this golden opportunity.The door has been opened for Arsenal and if they allow it to slam in their faces, then Wenger will NEVER win the league again.

  9. I don’t believe their is much wrong with the team apart from the complete lack of tactics. Our shape is non existent which is allowing teams to pick us off to easily. Ramsey is continuously moving out of central midfield leaving Coquelin on his own. Elneny or Flamini need to provide support, tactical discipline and work with Coquelin in a partnership. Especially as we need two midfielders to hold in order to allow the fullbacks to go higher up the pitch.

    The free role is Ozil’s he should not be too deep and look for space behind the striker. Ozil’s space is being squeezed because Giroud offers no pace in behind, defenders feel more able to step up. Wellbeck is the better option to hold and has the pace to run in behind.

    Lastly when teams defend the 18 yard box the only attacking options are crosses from the byline or working space for shots from the edge of the box. Arsenal don’t do either which is stupid given the aerial abilities of Wellbeck, Sanchez and Giroud. The full backs should get crosses into the box from the byline. Ozil, Sanchez, Campbell and El neny should let fly from outside the box.

    Bellerin Mertesacker Gabriel Monreal
    Coquelin El neny
    Campbell Ozil Sanchez

  10. Usmanov, Hi, I know how the problem can be fixed starting at the Lane today. But unfortunately, I am not the Arsenal manager otherwise, I would have begin fixing the problem that is with the Gunners in their current state of poor results in their recent last 5 games in all competitions. And halt the ugly trend of results on the field of play which is currently happening to Arsenal.

    However, I cannot openly reveal on the internet how the problem can be fixed. It’s not allowed for it’s confidential. My hopes are, the Boss would’ve by now know how to fix the problem happening with the Gunners from today and stop it from continuing further than it has reached in the bad Swansea result we had last Wednessday. But with a good win today over the Spuds to stall the problem.

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