Do Arsenal need to focus on entertainment or results in manager hunt?

Paul Merson has claimed that the Arsenal role craves an entertaining manager in charge, pouring water on recent speculation linking Rafael Benitez with the job.

The Newcastle boss has been in fine form recently, all-but securing his side’s place in the Premier League for next season with a win over our side at the weekend, and the Spanish coach is now being linked with a return to a bigger side, having previously managed the likes of Liverpool, Chelsea, Valencia and Real Madrid.

Paul Merson doesn’t see him as the person to take over from Arsene Wenger however, despite rating him highly.

‘I like Benitez – he is one of the top managers,’ Merson said.

‘I just think Arsenal [fans] want to see entertaining football, and I know this might sound a bit silly, but they want to see teams who go out to win football matches.

‘Benitez sort of sets his teams up – even at Liverpool – not to get beaten, and you go from there.

‘Arsenal fans are staying away at the moment because it’s not entertaining enough, and I think they will need someone with a little bit more flair.

‘They need someone with longevity – someone who will get a four or five year contract and stay there – because you don’t want a Manchester United situation, where they change the manager many times quickly after Sir Alex Ferguson.’

Is Rafa the wrong sort of manager for our side? Do we need to concentrate on a results boss or an entertainer also?

Pat J

Tags Arsenal Newcastle Rafa Benitez


  1. #Yo Iwobi - you wanna go away from here? says:

    Pure utter nonsense

    Some of us have supported our team through George Graham’s era and we were just as happy then as we were in Wenger’s golden era.

    This whole entertaining football stuff is just drivel. Fans stay away because they see idiots like Mustafi who just can’t be bothered. I mean he has the ability to not do the dumb stuff he keeps on doing but he just can’t be bothered anymore

    1. Hayzed says:

      Merson sometimes talks nonsense maybe because he talks too much(as a pundit)

    2. Nayr says:

      I would take results.

      allegri and jardim have both style and get results.

      ancelotti too.

      simeone is pure results but he gets the best out of bad players.especially the defensive players.people like chambers,holding,niles,mo elneny would shine under simeone.

      1. Malcolm Townsend says:

        I would take Allegri any day

  2. RSH says:

    I dont think you need to compromise one for the other. The players we currently have will never be good at parking the bus though, so if someone like Simeone were to come, the club would have to understand he’d need funds to totally change the personnel currently there. Not a single player in our XI is a Simeone type of player.

    There isn’t a shortage of managers that can play attractive football and get results though so I don’t see why this needs to really be brought up. We’re not going after Benitez in any fashion so he’s also kind of irrelevant to our managerial search. Allegri, Jardim, Nagelsmann, Loew (harder to get though) all have a chance of moving this summer and I think they would all suit Arsenal.

    What Arsenal need to decide though is the type of club they want to be. Our former identity is dead. We’re no longer a team that plays attractive football anyways, so its up to club to decide the next direction.

    1. gotanidea says:

      I think our hardworkers like Mustafi, Elneny, Monreal, Kolasinac, Lacazette and Mkhitaryan are Simeone’s type of players

      Apart from those managers you mentioned, Luis Enrique, Zidane, Pellegrini, Julen Lopetegui and Sarri also have attacking preference. But sometimes they can be erratic as well

      1. RSH says:

        Kolasinac, yes. Elneny would be squad player, and I suppose Laca is since Simeone wanted him last summer. I don’t think Mustafi is near good enough. Simeone doesnt have defenders who switch off completely whenever they feel like it. Monreal is also very error prone and I don’t think he’d cut it. Still, majority of our XI would have to be gone or dropped for Simeone to make a squad in his style.

        1. Ozziegunner says:

          Mustafi (“the ball watcher”) hardworking?

  3. Hayzed says:

    Lack of entertaining football is not the reason Arsenal fans are staying away from the emirates. Every reasonable Arsenal fan have more than 20 evidence to prove that Wenger is clueless for the past 13 years.The MAIN reason why Arsenal fans are staying away is the total lack of ambition shown by the corrupt board and the inept manager and we must do everything possible to kick wenger out of this club.
    Continue protesting with your feet and let’s see what the board think of this at the end of the season.

    I also don’t want Rafa though.

  4. gotanidea says:

    Football is an entertainment, because it’s useless to cheer for someone else’s glory without seeing a beautiful football show in return. I don’t mind if the next Arsenal lose and concede many goals like Liverpool, but they must score madly like Klopp’s Liverpool as well

    If you care so much about the result, might as well hire the pragmatic managers like Mourinho, Ancelotti or Benitez. I personally do not like if my team focuses on set-pieces goals, penalties and controversies to win the games

    If you realize, we have been giving other people (that do not even know us) a lot of money to win their trophies and we are obliged to cheer for their glory too. If those people cannot even show decent open play goals, then there is no point watching them

  5. Counsel says:

    The Wenger out cry has reached the board,but when it comes to getting a manager better than Wenger everyone one seems to hesitate. The fact is Wenger still has something to offer he will not be allowed to leave the club unless he gets the club back to the winning ways .Kreonke has no passion for the game and maybe see our manager as a rocket scientist based on what his other sports are doing

    1. Counsel says:


    2. RSH says:

      is this a joke? People name better managers than Wenger every time we discuss replacements. There is not a shortage of managers superior to Wenger at all.

    3. jon fox says:

      You are totally blind to the clear signs. Why do you – since you are NOT stupid – ACTUALLY CHOOSE to ignore the clear signs of his very imminent sacking? I have spelt them out on this site often enough and as you are a regular you will know what they are. So why do you PERSIST in this “Wenger will stay” rubbish? I would like a proper explanation if you will please , as it makes NO SENSE to believe he will stay for next season. Apart from which, you seem to think that a manager who cannot return us to winning ways will stay. Talk about bizarre thinking’! If you can call it “thinking”!

    4. jon fox says:

      Yes. My cat for instance! And every other cat and dog in the land. Then we start on humans. There are almost 8 billion worldwide. How many billion would be better than Wenger as manager? 4? 5? 6 perhaps!

  6. Counsel says:

    We should give king Henry a chance to manage arsenal, with all his achievement with the club at least he is allowed to mess up Thierry can bring the so called fresh ideas by the aobs

    1. Malcolm Townsend says:

      Young Kroenke loves Henry so who knows the young man will have his say and maybe he has already spoken to his dad for all we know

  7. Roachie says:

    Is anyone finding it entertaining at the moment? Also out of interest how many of you plan to spend your hard earnt cash this weekend watching a second string Arsenal go through the motions against West Ham ??

  8. Nayr says:

    There is also a coach at shahktar called paulo fonseca.
    young and plays great football.
    problem is that he is unproven outside ukraine.

    but i honestly think wenger will not step down.unless we dont win europa league and many season tickets are not renewed by fans for 2018/2019 season.

  9. AndersS says:

    That doesn’t have to either or. City and Liverpool both play entertaining football and get results. Even Spurs are just as entertaining as we are, but they got much better results.
    Bayern, Barcelona and Real Madrid have played entertaining football for years and have great results.
    Chelsea had a great mix last year.
    It is simply an artificial dilemma.

  10. Ks-gunner says:

    Idiots a lots of them. Playing attractive is a luxury we can not affort. Bec we are complete garbage.

  11. Ozziegunner says:

    I would have a George Graham clone back to manage the Arsenal tomorrow.
    You play competitive sport to win; if you look good doing it it is a bonus.
    There are plenty of good managers out there, who would jump at the chance to manage Arsenal due to prestige, financial status, ground, training facilities, potential longtivity of tenure and annual salary.

  12. Leonaed Kawuki says:

    We can achieve both, Frank Rikaad is idle, Get Lucien Favre from Nice, Get Patric Viera from New York City .We need complete new ideas . We need a new displinarian.

  13. Malaysian gunner says:

    Football is not entertainment.Even in the past results were all that matter.
    Clubs earned their income through the turnstiles. Nowadays sponsorships are just as if
    not important than gate receipts.
    Arsenal can at the moment attract sponsors. The thing is sponsors want to be associated with
    successful clubs. If Arsenal continue to be uncompetitive in the fw,you can bet sponsors
    will look elsewhere.
    That means results or a winning team. Its no use playing attractive soccer and having
    more shots at goal only to lose.

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