Comparing Arsenal with Newcastle, Everton and Dortmund!


What happened at Swansea was so depressing that it brought pealing fit of laughter from me. Interestingly though we have three parallel propositions of varying circumstances and positions for an observer to finally take a subjective as well as objective call on the quality and competence of our Mr. Arsene Wenger.

Normally, it is not easy to compare for more often than not you end up comparing Apples with Oranges. In real life as opposed to easy theoretical textbook problems the variables are nigh improbable to quantify. An easy argument for someone seeking to escape the damning judgment that such a comparison may cough up. However, a fortunate turn of events has landed one such opportunity (not ideal but still one that can be argued as optimum) in our laps to take a verifiable judgment call on the efficacy and effectiveness of Arsenal’s manager.

So, we have Mr. Pardew of Newcastle United, Mr. Martinez of Everton and Mr. Klopp of Borussia Dortmund (I have deliberately not included Liverpool for they are battling an anomaly in the loss of the best forward PL has known in sometime in Suarez. Yes I believe Suarez is better than Aguero). All of three managers listed hereinabove presently have to face in their respective clubs (together with one staring at Mr. Wenger now) a steep trough, and in it presents a unique opportunity for informative comparison that shall play out live in short term future.

Of course, the compulsively argumentatives amongst us would certainly present a cogent point on difference in resources, competition, quality of players available et al. But to my mind these variable can be adjusted through subjective concessions and as for the rest certainly a competent manager (or a great one as I am certain our Mr. Wenger believes himself to be) can account for such factors in the larger scheme without letting it affect his goals for the season too adversely. And the aforesaid managers have been selected primarily upon the expectations they have to manage. Newcastle have the kind of pride that makes their present situation truly unpalatable, Everton is suffering from cautious optimism (owing to Lukaku buy as statement of intent and talk of new stadium a.k.a greater financial power), while Dortmund have always had huge expectations from themselves.

Newcastle is on an upswing at the moment but their inherent weaknesses make this recovery interesting to say the least. A united team where a player plays for his teammates as much as for himself can mask many shortcomings but only for a period of time. It is the team with least appealing players (of the four), but is currently punching above its weight category. But the question is how much and for how long? This is where the quality of manager is tested. It will be interesting to see how Mr. Pardew manages his team. They say nothing brings a team together like adversity but what keeps it motivated to stay together needs to be found by a manager. Found and supplied. Will Mr. Pardew find it? Only time will tell.

Everton this season has been confusing. I believe their sins of last season are catching up to them. You cannot play fast, attacking football that relies on possession and quick passing without a strong back four (ask Barcelona or more importantly us gooners). Possession needs numbers committed forward as most of the attacks build from the CBs (which need to be good passers and interceptors) that means you are always liable to be game for quick counter attacks. This is where the strength and understanding of the back four is always tested. Barcelona found a smart way to cover up their deficiencies on this count by full pitch pressing. Thus, allowing their back four space and time to realign after an attack. Heck, even Messi was then seen doing slide tackles with disturbing regularity.

Everton is paying for updating their game flow over and above anything seen during Moyes’ era. Unfortunately they forgot to update their defence. And so they will be always susceptible and leaky in defence. After a transformation the second year is always tougher as your opponents have analyzed you dry. What Mr. Martinez does now shall be very interesting and shall in all probability make him as a manager to reckon with. Exceptional managers always find a way.

The worst of the lot is Dortmund. It’s a team I absolutely enjoy watching, but love to hate. There is so much good about them – the fluidity, the pace, the sheer work – rate et al. But it is not the beautiful game. For us lovers of classical football a Barcelona or Bayern (under Guardiola) present a greater allure than sheer effectiveness of Dortmund (or for that matter Real). Of course, even beautiful game remains attractive so only as long as it is effective (not the Arsenal way that cause more frustration and misery than oohs and aahs of appreciation that Barca got out of so many). That Mr. Klopp has got a problem is an understatement of some merit. Dortmund has the most appealing talent than any of the teams listed above including Arsenal. Reus, Gundogan, Hoffman (oh Mr. Klopp how could you do something so asinine as send him on loan), Bender, Hummels, Sokratis, Aubmeyang etc Yet it faces the same injury crisis as Arsenal, and the players bought have not assimilated the way Dortmund would have wanted particularly Jojic, who has been the greatest disappointment. Watch for him guys, if he comes even 80% as good as he is believed to be capable of he would put Gundogan under shadow. So Mr. Klopp is facing similar problems to us Gooners in assimilation and injuries. He has the squad to not only challenge Bayern but even beat them. Unfortunately, his squad is underperforming spectacularly in a way enough to cause him to pull out his hair plugs. A the moment it seems Dortmund would need 50 chances per game to get a goal, and for a team that believes that attack is best form of defence it is a big problem. It would again be hugely interesting to see how Mr. Klopp gets his team out of this hole.

Then there’s Arsenal. Wouldn’t say much on this subject as every aspect has already been debated to death. Suffice to say Mr. Wenger is well and truly under the cosh. Would he again do a Houdini (as to be fair he has done on more occasions than I would care to remember), or finally he has no more rabbits to pull out of his proverbial hat. Since we as gooners can do no more than write on forums such as here, might as well settle down, raise legs and buckle up for an interesting ride.

The Chinese would like to say something about interesting times at this juncture but practicality dictates it would take something truly extreme to climb out of this one considering our dwindling resources in defence. May the force be with us….


Tags Klopp Martinez Pardew Wenger


  1. ALL other teams have evoLved in many aspects and are playing 90mins of fantastic footbaLL (worth the ticket price), but nah!…… ArsenaL haven’t!.. we are stucked with a boring dictator from the Jurassic era

  2. Wenger is fascinating to me.
    On the one hand you can clearly see he’s intelligent.
    He is convivial in press conferences And has enjoyable sense of humor.
    I don’t want to dislike him.
    but i have come to quite dislike him.
    It is hard for me to articulate exactly what it is about him that makes me so upset.
    Over the years and months I have articulated a number of strategic and tactical mistakes that he has made.

    But I think the most upsetting thing is the ease with which he is now able to accept defeat.

    The number of excuses that he makes, the failure to learn lessons .
    His tendency to fail to do what is enough – to do just 90% of what needs to be done, it is beyond exasperating.
    In my 50 years I have never witnessed such a significant decline of someone so closely, of someone so famous and competent : by their own hubris and the cowardice of the those around them (the board) in fulfilling their responsibilities.
    What did they say about absolute power corrupting absolutely? i never understood that so fully.

    1. Very good analysis. That’s my exact take on Wenger. You can see that he is so intelligent but he is stuck in his own deluded bubble where he has learnt to believe his own hype….You can just about feel how close he could be to winning big, but I think winning what he did with us in his first few seasons surprised himself, this philosophy of buying cheap and turning them into trophy winners has taken over his judgement, the praise that he has had from everyone throughout the years for buying no bodies and turning them into stars has taken over his conscious. He is believing his own hype and it’s hurting his reputation as well as the club…

      I said all summer that if we did not buy a decent striker, DM and 2 CBs then we will be in the same position. And when we did not sign those players I told my Gooner friends that this was wengers ultimate season, he had no excuses as funds were made available to him. I knew it was going to be a frustrating season where I will criticise him but i gave him a while season to prove me wrong. He has no excuses anymore, money is available to him.

  3. We still have a chance of winning the title
    Chelsea draw a match here or there and we are straight back into the title race

    Debuchy Ozil giroud all will be back by end of December
    We gotta stay strong till then

    But the other side is we still have wenger
    A man who never uses his squad properly
    Plays player based on his love for them

    God knows what lies in the future

    1. We all know what is in the future, a wild race for the 4th place which by the winds blowing will be hard to get this time around….
      Referring to the players, Giroud the only reason we are looking for him to get back, is because Welbeck’s honeymoon is over so now we are stuck with 2 second class strikers (no disrespect to both of them) Ozil it can’t be more evident that he is not working for us, not even remotely as Sanchez does, the hype with Ozil was because the money we spent and his first games in the league, since Man City loss 6-3 he was never the same; Debuchy well to early to tell…..

  4. at the end…klopp is the best dortmunt squad is full or world class players…

    and they are leading the table….

    1. @Hafiz Rahman.
      Why do you love trolling? You don’t agree with many things (maybe everything) on here. We get it! But the trolling is just too much to handle. You think talking about getting Klopp as our next manager is a dumb idea. Guess what?! Some of us think the same too! No need for the trolling.
      Sorry for the rant. #justHadToLetItOut.

  5. off topic just a thought the board,gazidis keep hailing AW as a irreplacable because after he retires i doubt they’ll ever get a proven winning manager who cares so much about finances and prioritizes it above anything else even over trophies and one who treats the club finances like his own personal money that comes from his pocket,thanks for the memories AW but change is inevitable cant wait for those two years to run down,Gooner for life and the next

  6. @Alex.
    This is one of the best articles I have read on here in recent times. You really analyzed the situation well, albeit with a few words. A lot of our woes this season (and their causes) are similar to Dortmund’s. Like Barcelona and Everton, we have been guilty of overlooking the obvious importance of a strong defensive system in our style of play. We intentionally miss the fact that a strong defensive system (solid back 4, high-intensity pressing) gives us the freedom to TRULY play the way we want to play.

    1. @ usmanov..That’s the problem with Wenger, once he has made his mind up about something he will not badge… I remember a few seasons ago when we bought Vermaelen, they asked him why he loves small defenders, he said football is not about how big or strong a player is. Then last season away at Southampton that rainy day, my goodness we were absolutely bullied by a physically stronger Southampton side, Flamini was struggling and made some bad tackles that would all have resulted into red cards on another day.. So we drew 2-2, after the match he was why he refuses to buy a big, strong and quick DM, Wenger told the reporter that football has moved on, DMs are just supposed to be smart and intelligent, so size does not matter etc…

      That showed me that he has a completely different take of modern day football.

  7. Just take a look at Southampton. Lost they’re manager and quite a few top top top players in the summer and everyone expected them to struggle big time. In comes Koeman and bingo! The club is lying second in the prem and playing some lovely football. Have no fear fellow gooners, change can be positive. Wenger out

    1. Give Koeman at least 2-3 full seasons in the BPL, then judge him. Not even half a season and people are kissing his butt.

  8. I do not understand people who rate a manager based on half a season. I’m talking about Koeman and Southampton. Half a season and people are begging for him to be our manager. The same thing was said about Klopp, Laudrup,Martinez when their respective club were doing well. Klopp I can understand as he did well for a much longer period of time, but these other managers were flashes in the pan. Who wants Laudrup now as a manager? Realistically speaking, primarily at the folk who want Wenger out RIGHT NOW, who will replace him? Every other decent manager I can think of is tied up with other clubs and cannot just leave as they please. This is why we will have to make due with Wenger at least until the end of the season, maybe longer. I certainly don’t want us to rush out and grab anyone! Whoever replaces Wenger needs to be someone well decorated with a good record and vast experience. Asking for anything less would be doing a United.

  9. Check ur new oxford dictionary and see the meaning of Arsena Wenger…Arsena means total while Wenger means failure

  10. Transfers should have been made in the summer! Simple. How can you get to November with half your defence out injured then start talking about who we should be buying in January to save our fourth place trophy.

    In my eyes the January window is there to make the odd reinforcement or make a purchase to cover a player that may be out long term injured. On that basis we need a lot of players and then some.

    The summer window allows you to buy early, settle the new players in then push on in the league. Since David Dein went this club hasn’t had the ability to do transfer deals properly. I honestly think you could deliver a world class player to the Arsenal board with all the paperwork and agreements on the fee and salary etc in place and tell them all they need to do is sign the contract and they’d somehow cock it up. (Ok a bit extreme I know for those out there that will think i’m being literal) but we are a laughing stock.

    We were told that building The Emirates would allow us to compete with the biggest and best in Europe. But we are nowhere near. I don’t just blame Wenger. He is failing as a manager because he can’t or won’t change, i’m not sure which. But that greedy American and the rest of the board don’t seem to care about the fans and success of the club. We pay some of the highest ticket prices in the world let alone the league. We have negotiated some huge sponsorship deals and I firmly believe the funds are there for players. So why don’t they come? I think it’s partly Arsene’s/The boards reluctance to spend, and I also believe players look at the club currently and think there is no real drive to be more than a fourth place club.

    We need a board that says to the manager, look, our fans pay huge ticket prices so we need to get in big game (not necessarily big name) players than can perform. We need to give these fans the trophies they richly deserve to see this team win. We need to put players on that pitch that want to PLAY for this club and FIGHT for this club. We need to get rid of the dead wood that clog up the injury room taking big salaries (Abou Diaby).

    So I say to all you AKB’s. To all you Arsenal fans that say oh it could be worse and we should stop moaning. Are you happy? Do you happily hand over thousands of pounds a year just for tickets, then more for travel etc? Do you honestly look at the likes of Man City and Chelsea and think oh good for them, they can win the league but who cares we got fourth? Do you leave a match thinking oh well we threw a lead away again but never mind there is always next week? Because if you do then Stan, the rest of the board and Mr Wenger will keep delighting you with their lack of direction, inability to sign and manage quality players and lack of fight.

    We have a magnificent stadium and on the whole magnificent and dedicated fans. So is it so bad that a growing number of us want a board, a manager and a team that can return something to us?

  11. OT: Damn a contract extension for Arteta again!!! With due respect to his service for the club but players like him have to move on and create space for players who will improve the club. I feel like as long as we have him, Flamini and Diaby at the club Wenger will not see the need to get as a proper DM we have all been crying for.

  12. to be fair to arteta he has been made a scapegoat cos he is not a dm but been forced to play that role due to wengers failure to bring in a top quality dm he would offer us a lot more in his natural position that he played for everton he has good vision and passing ability and could chip in with some goals he has been wasted at arsenal and never got to see the real qualities he possesses and only one person to blame the manger! Cannot stop laughing at latest transfer rumour hummels for 31.3 mill with 200g a week wages really HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA!!!!!!

  13. Guessing the OP has never heard of paragraphs…

    At the end of the day I don’t care what other clubs are doing, we can debate the why and how all day long but don’t forget the clubs you are referring to lost some of their best players going into this season, pointless article.

Comments are closed

Top Blog Sponsors
JustArsenal Top Ten UK Blogs