Maybe Arsenal need a new manager every few years to evolve and adapt

Is it at all possible that changing key personnel on a regular basis is not only part of the modern game but also a necessity, regardless of the results?

Is it possible there isn’t one premiership manager who doesn’t know how to set our their team against Arsenal? …I doubt it. Everyone knows how Arsenal play, they know we want a huge percentage of possession and that we will try to engineer opportunities in a very indirect way. Its not only the top clubs that know it, teams like Watford know exactly how to set up against the Gunners. There’s obviously a very good reason for that….A lack of change…

Before you jump to the assumption this is yet another Wenger battering I would like to say its not only levelled at him but to any club that fails to adapt, evolve and re invent. Given that we have played the same way for many years means we are far from an unfathomable force.

Maybe having a manager at one club for more than five years is simply a worn out theory that simply doesn’t work anymore. Football is no longer a game of 11 V 11 over 90 minutes, its far more intricate and scientific and the degrees which can effect the end result are incredibly small.

Perhaps the movement of managers and players helps to invigorate a club, change the style and consequently create an unpredictability about how they will play.

We have all known for years that Arsenal rarely are able to offer a plan B which, as a consequence, means our plan A is well established. On its day it can be incredibly effective but as Saturday’s performance at the Hawthorns demonstrated, it can also be atrocious.

Maybe the future for our club, given that we are financially very solid, is an ever evolving squad of players and managerial change far more frequently than we’ve experienced at Arsenal.

I imagine those of us that want Wenger out would be thrilled to have Simeone in but, if we were brutally honest, is he really likely so stay for 20 years?…Of course not. However, if we want to take a seat at footballs top table, perhaps having a hungry achieving manager for three to four seasons followed by the next new kid on the block is the way forward in order to sustain that seat.

If we think of that in terms of players as well, maybe its time for Ozil and Sanchez to move on for considerable money and replaced by two new elite players a couple of years younger but who have hunger and ambition and are keen to give us three seasons before following the path that Ozil and Sanchez might take this summer.

I think the days of players like Thierry Henry of Stephen Gerrard staying at a club for huge sways of their career are over. It is something our board will no doubt hate, given the continual need to buy and sell but maybe thats the only way for any to regain and remain fresh and hungry.

To summarise maybe complacently is deep rooted within our club right from the board , through to the management and to the fan base that are happy to settle for the stability of a reliable underachieving management regime rather than run the gauntlet of change and with that change bringing new blood which poses an element of risk.

We all reflect on the time David Dein spent at Arsenal and the ‘get up and go’ mentality he had, how he made things happen. He has never really been replaced which may have a significant baring on where we find ourselves today, yet having him back is not the solution.

Is it possible our club needs an injection of balls at every level, people that make things happen, as oppose to watch things happen. On and off the park maybe we need people that will be part of our club for 3 or 4 years, make a significant contribution to energizing the club before moving on to be replaced by the next group of individuals wanting to achieve the same.

I think the days of planning any further than three to four seasons ahead are gone. In order for Arsenal to become a challenging force we need to employ hunger and aggression in every area on and off the field…

Without continual evolution extinction becomes a real possibility…

Neil Watson


  1. Juhi McLovin says:

    Not necessarily. Just make sure the new manager is not beyond reasoning or delusional. This way he can just adapt to the ever changing game of football.

    It’s quite clear Wenger is not like that. He is beyond help at this point.

    1. arsenalfan1 says:

      Yes, this is a special place we are in right now with Wenger………he just needs to go as a matter of urgency…..before he does anymore damage….to the club, to the players, to the supporters.

  2. Tas says:

    American business model is to change management as often as possible for many reasons and one of them being that the in coming management bring in fresh and up to date ideas from his or her frequent movement, but it seams Stan prefers loyalties above success which i respect but all do sometimes having consistency works well but but not in high competition sports business like football,

    1. Kostafi says:

      I have seen many fantasy football managers stay high up the table (without winning) by choosing a team and sticking with it for most of the season with little or no transfers. I have also seen fantasy winning managers who react to every event- injury, suspensions, double game week, etc to maximise points. With Wenger, we have the former- consistency (so far). The way forward is not frequent manager merry-go-round as has been at Chelsea/City/recent United, but a master-stroke appointment like Poch (ashamed to say) that can build a capable side with the financial muscle Arsenal have.

  3. lord wafflebury says:

    Mute point..can you honestly believe the board would alter things when they are only in it for the money and wenger has been delivering that in spades to them ?
    The Sheikh and the Oligarch are in it for the glory of winning trophies at all cost.
    Until we adopt their mentality we are stuck with our boards mentality of $$$ over success on the pitch !
    I have been supporting Arsenal since the early seventies and can honestly say now, particularly since the turn of the year, i have never ever felt so low, embarassed and ashamed to be a gooner as i am now !!

  4. Fatboy Gooney says:

    Keep dreaming lads, old mother Hubbard is signing the ting! ?
    And it’s a roll on contract ??? According to Sky Sports he told Pulis that he is staying.
    Wenger claims that he fix the problem ??? and apparently not qualifying for champions league football isn’t an issue either. In other words his staying no matter what. ??

  5. Ozymandias says:

    Interesting article makes a deal of sense. The top European teams seem to change managers/coaches frequently and this does not dent their success – however it does help if you have the best players. Arsenal are drifting and have been for many years. It has been said on this site many times before – there is no direction from the top (owner and board) or AW so it’s no surprise that this translates to the players in terms of motivation and tactics. Let’s refresh and regenerate – will that guarantee success – no but it will be better than this. Just like the late great Brian Clough AW has had his day and his magic has long gone.

  6. Fatboy Gooney says:

    ? Wenger’s fuming:
    ?Zil pulls out of training 24 hours before the WBA game with a Hamstring problem, yet he has told Wenger that he plans to join up with the German squad for their international friendly against England.
    ?? what’s that tell you?

    #Gunner Go Ya ?✈️

  7. mark says:

    Maybe Arsenal need a NEW manager PER SE..!! 😀

  8. frank says:

    This really has gone too far and now Arsenal are the joke of world football.

  9. Franko says:

    Is there any other manager older than Wenger in league football around the world? He seems to be the oldest manager around. Someone do some research.

    1. ArseOverTit says:

      You not have google and net access?;)

      Your not a AFC scout are you?

  10. ger burke says:

    couldnt agree more with this article .

  11. Jansen says:

    Big clubs change managers frequently and it seems to work for them more often than not. Barca, Real, Bayern, Juve, Chelsea, now even Man U and City all change their managers often. I think it keeps things fresh and keeps the players on their toes.

    I think, however, that world class players still change their clubs less often. Where else would they go when in their prime? Would Messi have gone to Real? Of course not but when they are settled and their families are settled it is hard to get them to move to another big club. If you live in Barcelona or Madrid do you want to move you family to Manchester?

    I think one of the mistakes Wenger made was not to rotate and refresh his squad often enough. Two summers ago he famously bought no one. Of course, a squad that doesn’t change and a manager who doesn’t change are going to cause staleness and boredom. I think Wenger’s reluctance to buy players who would compete with his core players (Ramsey, Wilshire, Walcot. Ox etc) backfired. He said he didn’t want to stifle their growth, instead, I think he made them complacent.

    When there was no talent around to speak of, Walcott insisted he be promised a chance to become central striker as part of him signing a new contract. When there was more competition in the form of Sanchez, Giroud, and Welbeck, Walcott was only too happy to run back to the wing and is now having one his best seasons over the last 3 years or so. You can’t pamper players in this day and age, competition breeds effort and progress. Too many players over the last few seasons knew they would be automatic starters. Last season Giroud started game after game when we were in a title race without scoring a single goal. Once Sanchez was put in his central position Giroud became a super sub and tried to fight his way back into the starting line-up. Competition leads to performance.

    If Wenger plans on staying he better be prepared to change his average players for other average players (we won’t be able to afford many great players) to whom his message is new (Ramsey, Giroud, Coq, Walcott). Sadly he also better be prepared to find two gems to replace Ozil and Sanchez. We can not sell them for what it will cost to replace them because they only have one year left on their contracts but it is time Wenger travels back in time and spots a talent for “just” 30 or 40 million a piece, because the big name players will not want to come to Arsenal, we should be realistic and forget about that. But we will need some special players to try and fight our way back into the top 4 next season. The likes of Liverpool, Man U, City, Chelsea and even Spurs are not going to stand still.

  12. Vlad says:

    Greg Popovich in the NBA, Bill Belichik in the NFL… oh, you want a football manager? How about Fergie? Point is, you CAN have the same coach/manager for many years, and it can be successful. You just have to be able to evolve with times, and, of course, surround yourself with winners, NOT whiners.

    1. Jansen says:

      More often than not, the top clubs change managers quite often. Take SAF out of the equation and tell me which big clubs have had managers who even served 10 years? Since 2007?

      1. Vlad says:

        Why would I want to take Fergie out of the equation? He’s a perfect example of a manager who ran a club successfully for many years. Difference is that he had surrounded himself with fighters, and not some bums who are just happy to collect a paycheck. I admire Wenger’s loyalty to his players, but his favoritism is what’s also killing this team. Guys like Ramsey, Walcott, Ox, Coq, Xhaka, Ospina would never get a start under SAF. But they play week in and week out under Arsene.

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