“The football club is going backwards” Former Gunner rips into Arsenal

Martin Keown has slammed Arsenal and claims that the team is going backwards after their exit from the Europa League.

Arsenal has been unable to return to the top four since 2017 and they have been struggling in the Premier League since they fired Arsene Wenger in 2018.

The Frenchman was at the helm for more than 20 years, but they have had two managers in the last three years, yet they will be without European football next season.

This never happened when Wenger was at the helm and Keown reckons that the club is hardly making any progress at the moment.

There is a remarkable amount of uncertainty around the future of some players in their squad, including Bernd Leno, Hector Bellerin and David Luiz.

Keown says Stan Kroenke has to show that he loves the club by opening up his cheque book to sign new players and he also urged Mikel Arteta to take some responsibility.

Keown said on BT Sport via Sun Sports: “The fans need to have their say. The club is becoming stagnated. There’s a lack of investment. 

“The Kroenkes – do they really love the club? They need to spend massively. Leno won’t sign a new contract. Luiz is leaving.

“Bellerin isn’t signing a new contract. There’s a remarkable amount of players that are uncertain of their futures.

“Arteta needs to take some responsibility. He’s outsmarted himself. He needs to keep it simple.

“I do believe he’s an outstanding coach, he needs to prove he’s an outstanding manager. It’s going to be difficult to back him if he loses again.

“It’s about results. He’s been here 18 months and he’s won an FA Cup, but when we look at league form it’s fallen away.

“The football club is going backwards and they have to arrest that slide.

“How much of the problem is about the manager and how much is about the squad?

“The manager is concerning me because he always blames the players. Massive expenditure is needed. New owners could be the catalyst.”

Tags Martin Keown


  1. Very much on point, only he did not stress the point enough – that Arteta has to take responsibility. Arsenal are 10th in the league not because of bad players but because of a bad bad coach.

  2. Hi, 👁️ agree with Martin Keown 100 percent! Only he is off slightly about 19-20 yrs! Arsenal have been going backwards! Just go and look, 👀 for your selves the stats are there 2 c! Since the champions league final against barcelona! Hello from Blazen Timothy Gunner Paul in Bermuda, Gunner’s 4 life!!!

  3. Arteta was/is a rookie, he has nothing to say he is a good manager and nothing to say he isnt a bad manager. The job is so obviously too big for him, its just about how long he is given to sink this club by kronk. Thats a scary thought if Arteta isn’t sacked and begins next season with the club. I do think we are close, if not past, turning this club around. We have neen constantly sinking for the last 10 years.

  4. Let’s just throw more money at the problem and pray to the heavens our rookie manager will get us back to top 4. This approach will get us nowhere.
    For years, this club has wasted money like a drunken sailor (70M on Pepe, 30M on William, 35M on Mustafi, 45M on Partey, 300plus pw on Ozil and Auba) without no accountability.
    First, I think we need to start by paying more attention to scouting, retention and overall management of players. Second, we need to hire an experienced manager to get the best out of our players.
    MK is right to point out we are now in a crisis. I would also like to see changes at the board level to reflect this fact.

    1. Apparently we’ve hired a headhunting company (Nolan Partners) to recruit scouts… even though we’ve not long ‘released’ all of ours!! 😳

      This club makes my head spin!!

      1. Maybe they’ll lend us scouts from the LA Rams? I honestly don’t think they know the difference!

        1. 😂😂 brilliant!!
          I saw your comment to Ozzie the other day, about giving up your silver membership and I just wondered do you miss going?

          1. Yes Sue. As much as the match, it was also about the craic with our fans in the usual watering holes! I was moaning about the Kronkes for years and I just thought I was a bit of a hypocrite paying my membership. The emirates is a poor substitute for Highbury, so all in all the arsenal experience has dimmed for me.

          2. Very commendable – I don’t think I’d be able to do it, although another 5 years of how I’m feeling right now might just do the trick 😄

            Such a shame…

  5. In fact Arsenal is really going backward forget the fact Arteta was Manchester city assistant manager he doesn’t have whatstakes to be Arsenal manager he is just trying. Arsenal for matter will don’t need mana
    ger that will come to Arsenal to and try no no no if kroenkes feel is not ready to Arsenal to next level he should get at of club

  6. That’s why the Kroenkes have to go, Sue. It’s a rotten business model which is based on economic rationalism. Everything streamlined towards minimising losses and as far removed from the grass roots of football as we knew it. And please take Vinai with you to Colorado.

  7. Let’s not forget Edu, the incompetent. He is in charge of players recruitment and has failed miserably. Edu must be replaced too, if Arsenal is to make progress. Edu must be sacked asap, along with Arteta, who, should be replaced with Allegri.

  8. there’s only two directions this club truly excels at, sideways and backwards

  9. Patient! Rome us not build in one season. Let the man build this team up. Change it you are back to zero again. No success are guaranteed success. There is only one Wenger. You guys chased him out too!

  10. rebuilding a club needs time….

    we do not even have a spine/backbone of the team

    there is no at least 7 or 8 consistent regular players in the team…..that has been playing together for at least 2 or 3 seasons…..

    The team is made up of young and inexperience players and the new players have not even adapt and settled

    Midfield and defence constantly rotating

    Fans expect the club to play well as a team??

    The fans and pundits do not even know about management and football

    1. @JI What rot…..do you even understand the game? Whose fault is it we have not have a proper leader since viera? Wenger was too nice, emery was too nice and the novice too arrogant. Which idiot rotates his captain instead if building them up. Who constantly chops and changes the starting 11? The novice has absolutely stuffed up this issue since wengers last 5 years.
      And you conveniently forego why we dont play as a team……..yes the novices tactics.
      Your support of the novice shows you are the actual recipient of your last comment.
      I dont put full blame on the novice, equal blame on the ceo and board

  11. MK is spot on.Arsenal have failed to mount a realistic epl title challenge since the new owner took over.The latter gives priority to his US sports clubs.
    Arsenal has to play 2 nd fiddle.
    Arsenal are just another London club.
    Its premium status is slowly eroded.If it fails to compete, it will drift to mediocre status and could be overtaken by West Ham


  12. The problems start at the very top, not so much in a lack of investment, but in a lack of genuine interest for the Club and it’s fanbase.The buck stops with the Owner who has made a series of appointments who have proved to be incompetent.The team Manager may also fall into that category as do a host of highly paid players.Despite the views of MK ,to my mind the acquisition of 3 quality players would repair a lot of the damage, but the problem is getting rid of a large group of mediocre performers , to balance the wage bill.

  13. Keown says it as it is – no waffle, no excuses, no “mañana, no insightful clever points to make ” straight to the heart of the issue.

    Where are all the “self sustaining” champions now ?

    With our ever decreasing asset* base (*players cash rich clubs (via owner investment) actually want to buy), that model became increasingly UNSUSTAINABLE to the point we’re at today.

    “Why should “Kroenke” spend his OWN money” came the cry from the naive, “it’s not a level playing field” carping and excuses – WAKE UP AND SMELL THE COFFEE!

    Have a word with the owner- without interjection from him in terms of squad investment we are trying to scale a very high brick wall.

    With “ownership” comes responsibly for your “business” (yuk) performance, and remember Arsenal Football Club is first a foremost a SPORTING organisation seeking excellence – not an ATM.

    Call Kroenke NERO, as he is simply fiddling (no pun intended) while Rome burns !

    Martin Keown speaks the truth. This mess cascades down from the very top, and I very much doubt apart from an initial 3 of so game “bounce” no manager could achieve anything of note with this current squad.

    Being crude probably sums it up best “You can’t polish a turd” !

    Well said Keown – a complete realist !

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