Is Mikel Arteta just another victim of the Arsenal Players Mafia?

Who is pulling the strings? by Lloyd Schatz

“Freddie Ljungberg was right when he benched the senior players and started 9 young boys at Everton in his last game.” was a quote used in a report in the Star yesterday, which was saying that our interim coach previously warned club chiefs about the attitudes of some of the Arsenal squad.

According to The Independent a year ago this week, Ljungberg and his fellow coaches were taken aback from the ‘slack attitude’ of some of the players, and warned that the appointment of Arteta would not change things.

The report said: Ljungberg told the hierarchy that too many of the players didn’t care, and that was unlikely to change until a permanent appointment was made. Both the interim manager and key officials are said to have been taken aback by just how much the players have dropped off, and how slack some attitudes were. It has fired the mood for a clear-out.

The Swede’s prediction appears to be right, with Arsenal’s season lurching to a new low after the Burnley defeat. The Gunners are now on their worst ever start to a Premier League season.

It appears that there is a bunch of players holding this club to ransom. Which makes me wonder if Aubamayeng was playing for a contract just so they can continue their politics. Is this
a matter of players manipulating the club just so that we can keep under performing players like Ozil? Is this the reason why Ljungberg was unsuccessful? Is it the reason why Emery was unsuccessful?

Who then will be successful as long as the Arsenal Mafia is running the club?

Lloyd Schatz

Tags Aubameyang Ljungberg Ozil


  1. One thing for sure is that Emery was unsuccessful because of the players not because of his ability. Had it not been for the players he was the one to take us to the very top of English and more than likely European football.

    Some of the decisions made by the club have not helped the cause. The mistreatment of Mesut for example. Just board is the problem just as much as the players are the problem and guys like Unay Emery and Mikel Arteta are there to take the fall.

    The only people remained who care about this club is us the fans. Everyone else is there for their own benefit.

    1. Like your first line HH.

      I actually rated Emery, and feel to this day certain players hung him out to dry downing tools on him.

      Come on – how do you account for 8 games needing 1 win for top four ?

      How do you account for Baku going down without a fight, managed by a guy that had won the thing 3 times on the spin (a quite brilliant achievement).

      Sevilla believed in, and played for, their manager – and the rewards are evident.

      Is Arteta now getting the same “treatment” ?

      Plus the guy is being left to make a silk purse out of a sows ear.

      Only time will tell – but it could be too late !

      1. One of the reasons widely accepted as the cause of Emery downfall was his lack of language yet the language barrier was not a problem when we went on that 22 unbeaten run.

        As you have pointed out the same players who went on that unbeaten run suddenly started to not understand the manager?

        The same theme is happening now, from winning the FA Cup and CS to beating the likes of Liverpool and Manchester City comfortably now we cannot win against Burnley at home?

        And people criticize the manager?

        Our team is capable of winning the league and this is not a theory or a mere belief but they have proven that they are capable of beating anyone when they want to play.

        The incompetence of the board and their dirty politics is the root of all these problems.

        1. We were winning matches where oposition try to win so we get them on the counter or we made space by playing from the back AND getting off the press…but de have never play good against teams that sit ay the back AND that has been our problem for years….other teams figure it out…Since Leicester game at least, when we fall to the trap and they get the win playing vardy in the last minutes….we need Tactics that allow us to beat those teams that wait for us and hurt us un the counter…why do u think we have allways suffer mou teams??

      2. “Come on – how do you account for 8 games needing 1 win for top four”

        I have a conversation with a huge cricket fan who indicated to me that this was match fixing..But I am l with you on that one

    2. No sympathy for Arteta for the following reasons
      1. he hired useless Luiz and Willian unwanted by our neighbors
      2. he retained Xhaka when he wanted out, no excuse for that
      3. he let Martinez go and retained Leno
      4. benched Ozil with no replacement lined up(not that Ozil was great but a CAM was required)
      5. Benched Martinellibefore the lock down
      6 limited the gametime for AMN, Nelson
      7 tied Aubameyang to a bumper contract rather than investing in a young striker
      8 keeps the same rubbish line up despite successive losses
      9 Plays from the back even when we are trailing and in need of a goal.
      10 brought back the useless Cabellos
      Well he invested and retained horrible players and he has reached the point of no return. The players he trusted are the ones who are dragging him down. He had the chance to bin them, he didn’t. Now the club is going into relegation, accept that. He needs to go now so that the interim manager can get his targets in Jan. Sorry Arteta, it’s your fault, now your career is going to be a disgrace.

      1. Well said gunner 22 .

        The give him time mafia will disagree. But the wrong doings have been and are there. Its his own fault. Yes the clubs higher ups are crap but we all know amd knew that. Arteta is not doing the things right that are in his control.

      2. 1. He is a yes man even though I support him fully. He had no say in Willian deal, the ones who sanctioned that deal are those holding our pot of gold.

        2. No comment

        3. Martinez was the one requested to go and he is not that better than Leno. Let’s not forget the ones who saved our last season from complete disaster was Leno and Pierre. But selective memory is the way to go.

        4. Agreed

        5. Let’s see what he will do after Martinelli return. He didn’t bench him all games.

        6. Agreed. He has been proven to have favourites.

        7. See Leno point above.

        8. Does he have a better alternative?

        9. No comment. I don’t know much about technicalities.

        10. Agreed 100% I don’t drink myself but if you were near I would’ve bought you a beer. Not only is he useless but he has decided to show everyone his boxing skills and suffer zero consequences while the likes of Guendouzi are banished from the team.

      3. Player Mafia. Conspiracy theories, aka Donald Trump eh? The players are waiting for a coach who knows what he is doing. I have never seen a manager hold grudges like Arteta. Through his grudges we don’t have Guendouzi, Ozil, and Saliba, plus others. Bizarre football too. We have been useless since the first game and could easily have had less points. It’ s like Arteta is talking his ability up, but in real life, in factual games, we are so poor. Words do not win matches. He does not have the football nous, or managerial experience to change. He has not got what our great club needs. He talks the talk, but can’t walk the walk. He is not the right manager/coach for our historic club.

        1. “The players are waiting for a coach who knows what he is doing”

          Hence our current predicament.

          Don’t rate this one either lads – tools down !

          Point proven perhaps ?

        2. Are the players doing charity? They are paid millions, to do their job. Dont hold the manager responsible for their failures. Except Partey or Gabs NONE would start for any of the top 10 clubs. Fact! AM do not want Torrera either.Coincidence?

          1. Loose Cannon, Arteta is on a reported £5,000,000 a year, totalling £20,000,000 if he sees his four year contract out – Hardly chicken feed is it?
            Not sure about where you get your FACTS from, but just to even up the theme of your post, it seems Saint Etienne want Saliba back. Coincidence?

          2. Ken, with all respect for AFC, so let Arteta “honor his contract” for the remainder of his term, why selective brick bats for him alone?

      4. God bless you , you spoke like an oracle or an angel. You hit the nail right on the head. You know your stuff very well.

  2. I said before that this club needs to get rid of the deadwood and nothing as happened a big clear out is needed and then we can judge the manager but most of these players are Wengers lot. We are not a retirement club but I do think we should buy from EPL that then saves the settling in process as with Pepe and Saliba Just get shot of them

  3. Copied across to a more appropriate thread (from an older article).

    My view for what’s it’s worth ;

    Yes, the rumour mill is in full swing right now – as you’d expect given our current position with everyone trying to pin down why.

    I have long subscribed to the view we have damaging cliques within our squad.

    Cliques which have largely remained in place from the latter Wenger years, through Unai Emery’s reign, Freddie’s and now Artetas’.

    I firmly believe we have some “bad apples” in our barrel, and would be shocked to actually discover who they were.

    U E walked through the door with total commitment, and discipline high on his management style.

    Mikel arrived with his “non negotiables” .

    Leaving the “cheap options” argument aside for one moment, where these appointments made in part to bring said discipline to the squad, grounding these over inflated ego’s ?

    You play for this club – not the other way around.

    I believe this style of management did not sit well at the London Colney health spa, and has rattled a few cages.

    Half this squad know in an ideal world they would be gone, but we are having trouble unloading them.

    Another couple or so are simply happy to let their contracts expire and pick up a “nice little earner” on their next deal.

    All very, very, very unhealthy.

    If I recall correctly during Freddie’s short tenure he played a fair amount of “kids” at Everton away (his last game ?)” – benching the likes of Laca & Pepe.

    At the time, I took this at face value.

    Now I’m thinking “was Freddie making a stand”, and would not be dictated to whilst sending a message above ?

    All rumours, all guesswork ……… all rubbish ?

    Maybe – but just my opinion.

    I leave you with this thought.

    The vast majority of photo’s from Colney training show the lads largely hanging with their own compatriots.

    Let’s look at one group.

    Auba, Lacca, Pepe, Matty G (as was) & Saliba.

    Look at the last 2 names on that list.

    Luiz now rumoured not to be even talking to Arteta – watch out for the two Gabby’s & Willian.

    Then there’s the “floaters” – drifting from group to group stirring the pot.

    I would say we have “one or two” of them !

    No different to the shop floor, the office etc – it only takes a few to start the rot.

    You get my drift – whether agreeing or not.

    Millionaires who do not like being told ?

    “Who are you to tell me” attitude.

    Forget that- you are players employed by Arsenal Football Club to play to the best of your ability, and give 100% in everything you do for this club.

    A bigger load of fiction than an Agatha Christie novel – maybe.

    I expect unmerciful stick for this post, and have to accept all comments as my theory is based on rumours. leaks and has no actual evidence.

    But I am simply airing a view I have held for some time now.

    I do believe Emery was got rid of from the dressing room, and are we seeing this unfold with Arteta – or his is simply not up to the job ?

    No single player is bigger than Arsenal football Club – past, present or future – and we’ve had some greats.

    Legends of the club who put this current bunch of overpaid, over opinionated, under-achievers to shame.

    1. AJ my view is that for many years past and still right now, there are a sizeable number of those who think they are doing the club and fans a favour by turning up to train and play.

      Ozil has been the most prominent of all but many others Guendouzi, Auba , Laca, Willian, Xhaka, Pepe, and many otherd who are not chosen, mostly in defence, need slapping down and sold if that laissez faire culture is ever to change. Auba is no more captaincy material than I am fit to be Pope, as a non CATHOLIC TOO.

      Tierney would be my outstanding choice as club captain. His relative youth is no handicap and his will to win and fight philosophy makes him the right choice.

      1. I wouldnt put Xhaka in this category.. I just dont think that Xhaka is suited for AFC and to be fair he did want to leave.. As for the rest of your comment I couldn’t agree more.

        1. MARK fighting innocent opponents is NOT playing for our team. It is childish, loutish, useless and harmful to our team He needs to go and very soon. You know that’s true, I believe. Players need brains and discipline, not an excess of testosterone. THAT IS REALITY AS I BELIEVE YOU FULLY AGREE.

      2. Jon I don’t think you can put Matteo in that group sure he had “discipline” problems but one thing you cannot question was his commitment every time he played he always gave his all even if it wasn’t always good enough the boy used to run himself to the ground and some fans used to call him a headless chicken well right now these same fans are complaining that this team is lacking hunger work rate by the way his red card against Brighton unlike Xhaka’s really showed how committed he was to his teammates especially Leno who was intentionally injured by Maupay!

    2. AJ, I make you a million per cent right and thank you for taking the time and making the effort, to voice this stuff. Nice one mate.

    3. Thanks AJ for this analysis. I agree with u 100% and thanks for the time you got to share this info to some fans who just argue for the sake of arguing

  4. Player power… I’m not saying it’s right, but it’s not only at our club. Maureen at Chelsea springs to mind, only turning up for the occasional game, losing the rest. They soon had him out the door!
    Look at UE now…..
    Have our players downed tools for MA? Hmm, not entirely sure…

    1. Lucien Favre also seemed to get it from Dortmund players. As what Fabio Capello said, it’s not easy to manage a bunch of young millionaires

      Maybe this is why Wenger didn’t like to buy expensive players. We now have French-speaking and Spanish-speaking gangs at the club

    2. Man U over the last few years??
      It could be we have a problem, but I am also in doubt. Against Villa it looked to me like a case of players not wanting to give 100%. But, then against Spurs and Burnley, it looked like we at least turned up.

      1. I dont think AFC players have a choice but to turn up against that dont count. As for Burnley they turned up at the beginning of the second half..who know what was said a half time..

      2. Yes, AndersS, United also.
        Against Villa they didn’t even give 30%, horrible performance…
        I beg to differ against the spuds.. and as for Burnley, after a poor first half, we started well in the 2nd, for 10 minutes anyway!!
        Another massive game tomorrow, but which Arsenal will turn up?!!

  5. This squad of players is certainly not good enough there’s no question about that and I wasn’t foolish enough to believe we would be challenging for the title! But are they 15th in the league material, no definitely not! Emery did well in his first season guiding the team to within one point of the champions League and Europa League final although I do believe we would have got champions League football had he not decided to experiment in the crystal palace game at home! Of course the players are to blame just as much as the manager but I firmly believe under the right manager the team could do a lot better than what we’re seeing right now! also, I don’t believe Emery was the right man or Arteta to take us forward.. the club have got to show a lot more ambition or we are only going to get worse.

      1. Enough said Armoury, we’ve got a fantastic team, not the best but good enough.

        Arteta should just walk, he has lost the dressing room.

        I’m sick and tired of people saying the players ain’t good. Did you see the bunch of players Ferguson had at his disposal when he was winning the league 3 times in a role when Wenger couldn’t even defend his title with the quality players he had?

        Ferguson will Always be the greatest because he could get the very best out of ordinary players.

        We’re making great players look ordinary.

  6. I would say how many on the team truly love the Club, Badge, and history of the club?

    There is no Tony Adams to crack people for getting out of line, no Henry that shows pride to wear the badge. Too many are here for the love of money rather than the love of club.

    At this point I would rather have a decent player who believes in teamwork and gives 100% for the badge over a primadonna who came for the paycheck.

    IF Arteta has the board’s support, then integrate the youth; bench the ones stirring things up.

    1. @durand.

      Spot on.

      Tony Adams would have pinned half this lot to the dressing room wall long ago !

      Not good for team morale – it seemed to work !

    2. Highly marketable players usually come with attitude baggage. Arsenal should’ve followed Liverpool’s recruitment policy

      Klopp’s decisions when he recruited Wijnaldum from Newcastle, Robertson from Hull, Mane from Soton, Salah from Roma and Jota from Wolves were frowned upon. But those underrated players perform much better than our fancy stars

      Had we recruited those players before they make it at Liverpool, I’m sure Arsenal would’ve gotten a backlash from their fans. We shouldn’t chase hyped players, but get the ones who are good in duels instead

  7. Every single club in the world have different groups/player mafia that is for the coach or against the coach ask any player past or present that played competitive football that’s just a given, it’s how the club control these different groups. Arteta was initially appointed as head coach which means he was only responsible for everything team related like coaching training tactics ect this also explains his early success, then lately he was made manager which now means he is also responsible for transfers, player contracts, playing staff, coaching staff ect ect and for a young rookie coach it’s way too much to handle, remember not even Emery was manager he was the head coach, the last manager we had was Wenger and looking back now he was a miracle worker so to answer the question I don’t think Arteta is the victim of a player mafia he might have bitten off way more than he can chew.

  8. No manager in the world can take this group of players to play consistently over an entire EPL calendar.

    3 managers have tried and failed, only way forward is to show this group the door!

    1. The time has come for people to start saying things like ( No manager can something great with our players, they are not bad players. It’s down to attitude and commitment, which stems from the manager.

      It’s Artetas fault he can’t offer the team what they need. Wenger, Emery and now Arteta means they haven’t got what it takes, simple as that.

  9. I think the thought of Auba signing his contract to carry on the politics is a bit far fetched but I do agree that there is probably some truth in what Freddie may have said, and the playing of those kids in his final game in charge would underline that in my opinion. I still think we can get ourselves out of this and start to climb the table but Mikel needs to change his tactics ,these players are not good enough to carry them out.

  10. That Aaron, is the solution , but unfortunately , very few Clubs will be interested in mediocre players , particularly when they are all suffering economically as a result of the Pandemic.I am afraid we will be obliged to soldier on with what we have for some time.

  11. I haven’t read so much nonsense in quite a while, I’m quoting word for word.

    “Auba playing for a contract so they can continue their politics”

    “Players manipulating the club so that we can keep underperforming players like Ozil”

    “The Arsenal Mafia running the club”

    This takes conspiracy theories to another level, I wonder who the ‘godfather’ is. Could it not be the simple fact that the players are just not good enough? Arteta must be playing along because he repeatedly says the team spirit is high and the players have bought into his philosophy. Also the underperforming player (Ozil) hasn’t played for over 9 months and the team has been underperforming even more since. So I go back to my previous point, the simple FACT is they are not good enough, no conspiracy theories please!!

  12. The thing is this; we are beginning to see that only a Mourinho-like coach can handle this team and bring out the best due to his no-nonsense approach to issues. We don’t need soft bellies at the moment because it is a critical one for us. But we have Arteta which in my opinion is a good coach and has shown a glimpse of what he can do if he has the time but does he? We always follow the cliche’ of “you are as good as your last result” and if that’s the basis for judgement, then… the players should look themselves in the mirror and resolve to either dig themselves out or sink alone.

  13. AJ: You may well be right. But I hope as a fan of AFC since 1979 (when a certain Alan Sunderland scored the winner in the FA cup) you are not.
    I don’t know if it sour grapes by Freddie or the truth. If it is the truth, the manager has no choice but to axe the senior players and field the youth even if we finish 17th in the table this season.
    Nobody has a God given right to win a PL game. But the effort and basic nouse shown recently is just unacceptable.

  14. Hogwash, conspiracy, non sense, lies.
    There is one common fact. The coach is not delivering and looking for ways to prove otherwise is nothing more than fiction.
    Blame it on the players, luck, weather or anything you want. It is MA’s fault and his fault alone.

    1. They’ve got Wenger, Emery and Freddie out but it’s all Arteta’s fault. If you’re incapable of seeing that certain team-members have downed tools of late, either you need stronger glasses or you simply don’t have a clue. I strongly suspect the latter.

      1. I was addressing people who use their brain and not their emotions.

        I forgot more about football than you will ever learn.

        MA himself repeatedly praised the players and applauded their efforts. so for you to
        Blame the players without a proof is just lying and dishonest.

        1. Icw

          “I forgot more about football than you will ever learn.”

          With pretty much certainty I can say …. I doubt it.

        2. Jimmy B is correct. Between the great Arsene, Unay, Freddie and now Mikel the “common fact” is the players.

          1. “the “common fact” is the players.”

            Nope. The common fact is bad ownership.
            Like they say the fish rots from the top.

            People who blame the players are jealous of their salary and want the players to submit to management and work like slaves.

      2. You need to look a the team Jimmy and tell me how many regular team members have survived from Wenger time? Our playing first team is almost new or post Wenger era. Only Laca, Xhaka who’s Arsenal career was saved by Arteta himself, Bellerin survived from Wenger era who still in some capacity play for Arsenal first team. Auba does not count bec he joined in Jan, after 3 months Wenger left. Elneny was mostly an outsider before and then went on loans and he has been brought back into first team by Arteta. What are you on about? Wenger left because of board and fans, Freddie was there for a little period an interim till we find permanent manager and UE well he just could not cut it in EPL. It does not mean UE is a bad manager but it has happened to so many managers where they are highly successful in one league but struggle in another. AVB was a prime example as well as Scholari.

  15. Andrew, I agree with most of your points, but the last sentence is up for debate my friend.

    I would suggest that if we put Leno, Gabriel, Tierney, Saliba, AMN, ESR, Martinelli, Saka, Bellerin, Partey, Torreria, Guendouzi, Lacs, Aubameyang, Balogun, to name just fifteen players, there would be many clubs in the top flight football around Europe who would be interested., as we already know.
    These players are not second class, but need a manager who can gel them TOGETHER and I honestly think /thought that MA would be the man.
    His start as a coach was fantastic and he confronted the issues hinted at in this article head on and sorted them out.

    His problem has been since the lockdown and, in my opinion, the decision by the club to make him the manager, with the workload that saw AW struggle with and he had twenty odd years of managing under his belt.

    He needs assistance from someone the players would respect and who had the DNA of our club in them.

    Vieria, Henry, Bergkamp, Campbell come to mind – already with experience.
    If MA doesn’t get some help, I can only see him floundering on his own inexperience.

    1. Good points.
      Our problem is not the player’s individual skills.
      The problem is, they don’t appear to be applying their skills 100%, and nor is the team working as a strong unit. We lose games to teams with “inferior ” players (with all respect), because we are not getting the best out of our own.

    2. Ken, I should have said ‘as a team’. You are right there are some talented players but, for some years now, there has been a lack of consistency and disconnect between the team and manager(s). One of the reasons could be the lack of a proper captain – Patrick was the last decent skipper we have had. Recent events have highlighted this, when Xhaka was up to his stupidity where was Auba? You make some good points though!!

    3. kEN it seems you have not noticed my article today . A shame, as I would love to know your thoughts on what it said.

      1. Sorry Jon, I have been writing an article myself and got involved with Andrew and AJ/ Mohsan…great debates going on tonight and all being conducted (mostly) in a well disciplined manner.

        I will chase up your article now Jon and my apologies for not reading it before…especially as I have asked you to produce it!!!

  16. Hmmmnn.

    Saw this in the Telegraph AFTER posting my original comment above (in fact just seen it);

    “Arsenal have produced their worst start to a ­top-flight season since 1974 and Arteta must unite a squad divided and fractured into cliques”

    What do the Telegraph know, perhaps no more than you and I.

    But I have been around many , many dressing rooms, training grounds and met a good few professional people (up to and including the very top level), and anyone with a basic knowledge of the game can see we have a real problem above and beyond ability with this current set of players.

    To use very simplistic language, they need sorting out ASAP – easier said than done, just ask Mikel.

    1. What squad …most of the regular players in this team have been acquired in current and last 2 seasons. Leno, Gabriel M, Luiz, Tierney, Pepe, Partey, Cebollos, Willian, Saka. On top of that Eleney has been brought back by Arteta, he convinced Auba to sign new contract, he convinced Xhaka to stay and played him in regular basis to save his Arsenal career. So where are the old trouble making players everyone is talking about. What sorting out? You are hiding Arteta’s poor tactics and team selection behind some sort of player mafia conspiracy theory. Most of our players are new, the ones which are not have been brought back into the team my Arteta now you can not allmof sudden turn around and put blame on players. When Xhaka was playing fine was it not everyone here saying look how much Arteta has improved Xhaka and Eleney. It’s his choice to play Laca as well…what are you guys on about?

      1. ” Most of our players are new,”

        “most of the regular players in this team have been acquired in current and last 2 seasons”

        Sorry ?

        Seven of the starters against Burnley remain from the Wenger era.

        And a further four were on the bench.

        1. 6 started who were there in Wenger era let’s anaylise the 6 shall we. Auba he can not be labelled as Wenger old player as he signed in January then Wenger left end of the season, Laca yes a Wenger signing but someone who was not even favoured by Wenger he preferred Giroud, Elneny another one of Wenger’s castaways but Arteta brought him back from loan and made him regular in his team, Xhaka is from Wenger era but again another player who is preferred by Arteta himself when he has options on bench like Cebollos or any of the youngsters, Bellerin same as Xhaka he is played by Arteta infront of Cedric and AMN so again he has choices but he stuck with Bellerin. Last Holding not a regular in Wenger era and can not be called as Wenger regular player but same argument again he has Luiz, Mari, Saliba as options but he choose to keep him in squad and in starting line up. So if I accept for argument sake that all of them are regular Wenger regime players then who’s fault is it to play them in team regularly when he has new or other options in the squad some of them he bought in last transfer window. If he is being pull down by players do you think you and others know it but Arteta himself is blind or does not have a brain. He keeps playing same players week after week when he knows they are conspiring against him while leaving other his own signed or newish players on the bench???? Please explain the logic

          1. 1st let’s get PEA sorted.

            “The Gabonese striker was Wenger’s final signing and also his most expensive – coming at an eye-watering £56m from Borussia Dortmund”

            The above is a mater of record.

            As for the rest of your response, I repeat .. …7 of the starting 11 in our last game remain from the Wenger era.

            Try to rewrite history all you like, you remain factually incorrect.

            Perhaps a little thought before coming on, or I can send you a copy of “Arsenal Past and Present”

          2. If this is how you understand fact then it is actually 6 players and you are worng because Saka was not in Arsenal first team squad. By your logic getting rid of Wenger era personal will empty the club….even the poor guys who never had anything to do with a team manager …cleaners, repair men, cheifs … Because now I have realise you are counting the youngsters as well Willock, Nelson, Nkeitiah, ESR. What sort of logic is this bro???

          3. Stop shifting the goal posts, you said and I quote ;

            “ 6 started who were there in Wenger ERA”

            7 were there in the Wenger ERA.

            But now it’s first team, so Saka cannot be included ?

            Neither can the””youngsters on the bench I listed – but hold on, they were there in the Wenger ERA ?

            You yourself cited the “WENGER ERA”

            Boring now, cannot keep justifying provable facts to someone who simply got it all wrong.

            You are entitled to your opinion, just helps when quoting facts they are at least correct.

          4. AJ/ Mohsan, interesting discussion, but I believe it is wrong to count Auba as a AW signing.
            If you want to include him as a AW signing, then I’m sure he would take it as a compliment, but gazidis would decry such a claim.

            In actual fact, it was gazidis who took over the role of contracts, signings and selling of players from AW in the 2017-18 season, at the start of the New Year (remember we got our Arsenal back and the three musketeers that remained after he left?).
            The official Arsenal 2018/19 handbook announced the following players were signed under said gazidis regime.

            Mavropanos – Mykhitaryan – Leno – Sokratis – Aubameyang –
            Lichsteiner – Torreiria – Guendouzi

            That is why I have never given credit (or otherwise!!) for any of the above to AW.

            So, in the team that played against Burnley, the comparision is this:

            Leno- gazidis signing
            Bellerin – wenger signing
            Holding (*Luiz) – wenger signing – (*arteta signing)
            Gabriel – arteta signing
            tierney – gazidis involved signing
            Xhaka – wenger signing – arteta talks him out of leaving!!!!
            Elneny (*Partey) – wenger signing (*arteta signing)
            Willian – arteta signing
            Auba – gazidis signing
            Lacs – wenger signing
            Saka – wenger Hales End signing

            *I think you will agree that both Partey and Luiz would have been selected, if fit, before Holding and Elneny, so that means four of the players are from the AW era, including Saka who got his b/through via UE – three gazidis related signings and four arteta signings.

            Injured or substitutes
            Partey (Elneny) – arteta/wenger signing
            Luiz (Holding) – arteta/wenger signing
            Mari – arteta signing
            Ceballos – arteta signing
            AMN – wenger Hales End signing
            Nkettiah – wenger Hales End signing
            Runarsson – arteta signing
            Mustafi – wenger signing
            Willock – wenger Hales End signing
            ESR – wenger Hales End signing
            Martinelli – gazidis/UE signing

            I happen to think that the crop of Hales End signing mentioned above are of good to excellent quality and so does Arteta it seems.

            The question still remains for me though AJ, if the AW/gazidis players are the ones dragging the team down, why does MA play them?
            He’s already saying that he wants Xhaka to come back and he obviously sees something in the guy, if he turned down a reported £35,000,000 for him.
            Playing Bellerin when he bought Soures?
            Holding when he has Mari/Saliba?
            Xhaka when he has AMN?
            For me, the only players I can see justification for being called AW deadwood are Xhaka and Mustafi from the above.

            Good debate from you two though, both compelling but different viewpoints.

  17. A big club needs an already proven big manager. This hasn’t happened at Arsenal. The owners and management didn’t want to invest or pay for a big manager. Klopp at Liverpool still needed a few years as a tried and proven manager. How many years are we prepared to give our current manager who has no managerial track record. This is a massive gamble.

  18. This is what we do at the end , we blame everything on the players. What player mafia?? Didn’t Arteta hit rid of most players from squad who he deemed surplus or trouble makers?. Players should be blamed for our performances and results but 50% or more of responsibility is on manager and his coaching staff. We don’t hear from the national managers of these players saying they are trouble makers. Also Arteta has been portrayed as someone who is not a board yes sir and who speaks the truth with fearing the consequences then why does he not come in open and say anything about player mafia? Why does he keep playing same players in team if they are conspiring against him? As usual another creative excuse to blame someone else for Arteta’s failures.

    1. Mohsen: You got it right. The players are blamed not because of their performance or lack of but because of their income.
      The manager selects the players and the manager creates a game plan. It’s all about the manager and ours is a control freak who lacks flexibility and knowledge.

      1. 👍…I don’t understand the logic. When players perform then pro Arteta give all the credit to Arteta, look how much Eleney and Xhaka have improved, look at our defenders but when we start to loose it’s all of a sudden players fault??? Players are a mafia they are not listening to Areta. They need to be gotten rid of. What logic is this. So when I do something good my Boss takes the credit and when I do something wrong I get blamed for about justice Haan.

        1. Mohsan,great point on the mafia link – never saw it at the two Wembley visits did we?

          However, look at what Tierney is now saying and the situation becomes even more confusing… the players are blaming the players… the manager is blaming the manager…the fans decide who they think is responsible…meanwhile relegation seems to be looming!!!

          1. Hi Ken, yes very worrying times. I never thought it would be possible that one day we will be fighting for survival. Also these statements from Edu does not seem in sync with the situation we are in. The statements from Edu just shows how disconnected some ppl at club are from reality. My point is if you don’t realise there is a problem and things are broken then how are you going to fix it.

          2. Mohsan, I don’t think for one minute that anyone at the club doesn’t realise there is a problem, just as every single supporter knows it as well.

            The problem is, what to do about it – not who is to blame or why, when and how it is/has happened.

            We could go back and blame just about anybody in authority from when we moved away from Highbury up and until those in the hot seats today – that really doesn’t get us anywhere though.

            I am clinging to the hope that Mikel’s first few months in the job wasn’t just a fluke, or that the players movement to get UE out (only my personal opinions I hasten to add) are a prelude to what is coming next…time will tell.

  19. Any excuse to justify Arteta s effect on the team. If he is being sabotaged why is he as determined to back those who are
    at the heart of this great big set up

  20. There’s nothing wrong at Arsenal that a good shake up couldn’t fix starting with Edu, his Brazilian connection and other non performing driftwood. Trouble is this can only be achieved by a new owner who is also a fan, passionate about winning and demanding full commitment from his staff, especially the players.

  21. According to Arteta,the Arsenal project is a long term one. The problem is most if not all clubs dont have the patience.If Arsenal keep losing they could be in a fight for epl survival.
    If Arsenal lose to to Saints the axe may not fall but lose against MC and Everton I cant see him surviving.
    If Arsenal do want a new guy,better get someone who has won trophies not a rookie full of potential unless they are prepared to wait for success. Even then there is no guarantee

  22. Agree with Joe.S.
    We need a owner who is passionate about the club and who will spend big to get top class players like the big boys. Arsenal are falling further and further behind to bridge the gap.
    Unless the owner is willing to compete at the highest level,Arsenal will be just like West Ham ,Everton.They have been overtaken by Chelsea and Spurs the last 5 to 8 years.
    Soon they will be replaced by another team in the Big 6.

  23. I dont agree completely. Let’s look at what has happened this season. We have seen bland performances from the team since the ManU game. Now injuries may have played a role but then rumours of leaks about the club started. We heard of a clear the air talk. Now in such cases, it is mostly juniors(players) not understanding or not subscribing to the seniors (manager’s) methods. We have also heard some snippets about MA’s tactics from Willian and how he has trouble adjusting with it. This makes me think that MA tactics are too hard for the players to execute, and only recently have they come to somewhat grasp it.
    Now ofcourse the players are at fault in most games. MA cant make you miss one on ones, do a foul throw, grab people’s throats, butt heads etc. But we can’t pin all the blame on the players shoulders and equal blame should be apportioned to MA and the board too.

  24. If those rumours are true it is even more baffling as to why MA hasn’t rang the changes and benched the players in question!

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