Wenger has earned the right to be untouchable at Arsenal

Yesterday, one of our readers, Adam Kemp, wrote a long and detailed article about why Arsene Wenger is holding back Arsenal chances of success. This generated a lot of responses, and The Analyzer wrote a comment that was even more detailed than Adam Kemp’s article. He has asked me to post it as an article in its own right for discussion. So here it is……

To Mr. Adam Kemp: A Response by The Analyzer

First I would like to welcome you back from where ever you were hiding. I guess you were praying and fasting for all these years for this moment so that you would come out and say “I told you so five years ago”. Having said that I feel your post is palpably out of context and seriously lacking in perspective.

You mention how big Arsenal is based on its cash flows and brand valuation, without stating how that was achieved by making sacrifices on the field of play. Between 2006 and 2012 the club had to deal with losing its best players as it could not match the financial power of teams such as Real Madrid, Barcelona, Bayern, Man United, Chelsea, and Man City. Instead the club made such sacrifices to bring Arsenal closer to the big clubs in Europe so that you could claim in your article that Arsenal is as big as clubs it could not compete with between 2006 and 2012.

Without the astute management of the club by its executive team and Wenger’s capabilities on the field, Arsenal could easily have degenerated into another Leeds following the decision to build a new stadium. Give the Arsenal squads for the period 2006 to 2012 to any so called great manager and see if he would have achieved the following in the Champions League: 10 straight qualifications to group stages, 2 quarter finals finish, 1 semi final finish, and 1 runners-up finish.

You tried to draw parallels between the current team and the teams that Arsenal had between 1998 and 2005 by arguing that those teams would have dismantled Dinamo Zagreb and Olympiacos. How you are certain about this is beyond imagination. Incidentally the so called great teams of the period 1998-2005 achieved the following in the Champions League: 2 quarter finals finish, 1 round of 16 finish, 4 group stage eliminations, and 1 round one elimination. During the invincibles season, Arsenal achieved the following results in its first three games: Arsenal 0- 3 Inter Milan; Lokomotiv Moskva 0- 0 Arsenal; and Dynamo Kiev 2-1 Arsenal. Thus the team had 1 point after 3 games in a group where only Inter Milan could have been regarded as a force to reckon with. Yet this was Arsenal’s best group of players for ages.

You made the point that when Arsenal turn up we win games and when we do not we lose. I do not understand what point you are making here because this is pretty obvious. That is why we always caution against underestimating any team. Last night cannot be blamed on underestimating the opposition but on some players having awkward performances. These players include Ospina, Koscielny, Gabriel, and Bellerin. I have included the three defenders on this list because the corners that culminated into goals were down to poor communication between the defenders. First Koscielny and Gabriel went for the same ball thereby creating a dangerous situation which they only rescued by conceding a corner. That corner led to the first goal. Second Koscielny and Bellerin did not communicate well in clearing a harmless ball leading to Koscielny conceding a corner. That corner resulted in the second goal. Third, Ospina, a player who kept 14 clean sheets in 19 appearances last season made a schoolboy blunder in claiming a harmless ball leading to the second goal. Those were the moments Arsenal lost the game. I reiterate here that 2 goals are more than sufficient to win any game, particularly at home.

You try to bring in the lack of transfers into this argument, and how you think it has a bearing on the outcome last night is beyond me. The quality of Ospina as a keeper cannot be doubted. In fact fans here were calling for him to start when Petr Cech had an underwhelming start to his Arsenal career. Of our six defensive players on the field last night, only Gibbs could be regarded as a backup player. The other five were the dream starters of most Arsenal fans. By blaming lack of transfers are you saying Koscielny, Gabriel, Bellerin, Coquelin, and Ospina are not good enough to be first teamers at Arsenal?

Lastly, you decided to propagate Mourinho’s rubbish about Arsene’s supposed untouchable status at the club. First, neither you nor Mourinho have an idea about Arsene’s performance targets from the year he joined Arsenal to date. Your one dimensional perspective that a manager’s performance target must be to win things on the field and nothing more does not get support from realities of football management. When Alex Ferguson was appointed manager of Manchester United he went for six good seasons without winning the league (finishing: 11th, 2nd, 11th, 13th, 6th, and 2nd in those six seasons). On the cups front he was not doing better either, only winning the FA Cup in his 4th season in charge, European Cups Winners Cup (ECWC) in the 5th season, and League Cup and ECWC in the 6th season.

During those six seasons when he was an also-ran manager, Ferguson invested heavily in player acquisitions with no results to show for it. For instance in the 1987/88 season he made high profile signings that included: Steve Bruce, Viv Anderson, Brian McClair, and Jim Leighton. A season later he brought back Mark Hughes from Barcelona. He followed that with further high profile acquisitions that included: Neil Webb, Mike Phelan, Paul Ince, Garry Pallister, and Danny Wallace.

Why Ferguson kept his job with such poor on-field performances against the backdrop of huge investments in players must have beat the imagination of Adam Kemps, Mourinhos, and likeminded football followers of that time. As a matter of fact some Kempesque Manchester United fans wanted Ferguson fired in the 1989-90 season, when banners with the following message were commonplace at Manchester United games “Three years of excuses and it’s still crap … ta-ra Fergie”. Had the club management thought like you Adam Kemp and Mourinho, Ferguson would never have achieved what he went on to achieve. He would have been sacked when he was two seasons away from starting to produce on-field results that would transform Manchester United from being an average English club, into the second most successful club in English football.

The Ferguson case demonstrates that club administrators do not always have the same performance targets for their managers as fans and other outsiders have in their dreams. Club administrators have intimate knowledge about what the club can and cannot achieve in a particular period. As long as the manager’s performance is within the stated short term and long term performance targets then club administrators will not sack the manager whatever the outside world says. If Mourinho’s performance targets require him to win the league every season that does not mean the performance targets for Wenger must be similar to his. Chelsea and Arsenal are two different clubs in terms of resources, philosophies, and history.

Turning to Arsene’s case in retrospect, it is apparent that the club administrators wanted a manager that would transform Arsenal into a big club without upsetting the self sustaining business model. Prior to the arrival of Wenger, Arsenal was a club that always had limited spells of success followed by long spells of average performances. The longest spell of success was 11 years between 1929 and 1940. This was followed by another of seven years between 1947 and 1954, and another of seven years between 1986 and 1993. Such erratic flirting with success rarely made Arsenal a global brand.

The Wenger period saw a nine year period of success, which transformed Arsenal into a global brand, based on pitch performances. This was then followed by a period of austerity caused by building a new stadium to improve the club’s revenue streams. This period if not well managed could have easily transformed Arsenal into another Leeds United, however this did not happen, courtesy of Wenger’s capabilities as a manager on the field, and profound understanding of the club’s vision for the future. The period 2006-2013 saw Arsenal remain within top four in England, while in Europe it always went beyond the group stages. Everyone during that period predicted that Arsenal would implode. That the club consistently finished within the top four and went beyond the group stages of the Champions League, when no one expected them to was clear testament of how the team overachieved during that period. Rather than slate and belittle Arsene’s management during that period, one would expect you to give him credit for what he achieved with very little resources.

As from 2013 to date the club has been steadily adding big name players while retaining key players, something that could not happen during the period of austerity. Over the same period the club won back to back FA Cups and Community Shields. Only a pessimist or a person who is bitter about Arsenal and Arsene cannot see progress between 2013 and now. The same way such a person(s) could not have seen progress in Manchester United winning the FA Cup in the 1989/90 season, while finishing 13th in the league; winning ECWC, while finishing 6th in the 1990/91 season; and winning ECWC and League Cup, while finishing second in the 1991/92 season. If you insist on your claim that Arsene is untouchable, then I will say he earned the right to be untouchable.

(Tinashe Shamuyashe, The Analyzer)

Tags Ferguson Mourinho Wenger


    1. have to say the analyzer does come across as very arrogant to me at times but…
      i read this post…an well damn i agree.
      hard to argue with the parallels he made here

      part of me also wishes there was more clarity regarding our transfer policy, i still find it hard to believe wenger would not reinforce after getting rid of so many players in the summer. someone on here made a point about kroenke follow the glazers model…an that inhibiting wenger.
      interesting thought

      1. @muffdiver
        I guess thats because the brother is confident in his knowledge. Especially when he has to put up with regurgitated talking points of the ignorant…

        1. I’ve heard it all now , The main excuse in this article is that “we don’t know what arsenals club targets are !” ….

          It’s simple , either wengers target was to win the league and he had failed to do so for god knows how long !

          …. Or he was asked to remain in the top 4 during our period of “austerity ” !

          Not bad plan at such a time and he would of reached that target with everyone against him , I agree !

          But if that was our real target and still is , why are we paying the highest for ticket prices in the league when we are generally the 4th best performer ? … Not only that but we have to watch them penny pinch in the market , having the audacity to want “value for money” !!!

          Where’s our f@%king value for money ???

          I was once wengers biggest fan , I defended him the same as a lot of us are now , but really … Enough is enough , the reakistic supporters know that the 2 trophies they really want in the league and Europe are far beyond our reach , leaving us with a few cups that not everybody takes seriously and a battle for 4th place !

          Why are people happy with this ?

          If we paid the 4th highest fees in the league then fair enough , but we don’t , we pay top dollar , why shouldn’t we expect more ?

          Thank you for everything you’ve done arsene , it won’t be forgotten by the intelligent fans , but kindly move aside , so somebody with a bit more ambition can have a go !

    2. Amazing is that it 2 days for AKB’ s to recover from the shock of loosing to a tier 3 ECL at Emirate to start once again justify Wenger inept and outdated management.
      NY_Gonner is one of them coming out the cave and blindly defending Wenger no matter what!,
      Back to the Article, at least we anti Wenger give credit to Wenger good old days, and what he accomplished ,but you idiot Non Analyzer even go below that by saying we lost here and there back then and we were not a great team anyway.
      How low you guys want Arsenal to sink before realizing that we are I. The wrong direction on Football. This is a plan by Kroenke and Wenger to turn Arsenal in to business machine without givin the fans a football satisfaction. Charging the highest ticket price in the world to come and watch the humiliation of loosing to Olympiakos!!!
      But wenger’s time and you all is passed and soon you will be kicked out of this great Football team before you destroyed it to the point of no return.

      1. @esap
        Last I checked Olympiakos was considered a ECL squad manned by professional footballers, led by a professional football manager. Just because you don’t rate them doesn’t mean they don’t earn the right to be taken serious on the pitch…
        Seems you’re going to be angry for a few more years there dude. Deal with it…

      2. The create of the site has gone beyond this season to ask all fans to stop the unnecessary denigration of other AFC fans. You do jot need to slag ofnither fans with different views to state your points. The idea of supporting a club is that we all respect each other. This does not mean we need to agree.

      3. For the last 5 years I have read article after article stating that AFC and AW was not going to finish in the top 10 or was not going to win anything. There were little in the way of facts just regurgitated comments from the usual short sighted TV commentators or MoanerAO ( who has made it his mission to unsettle AW and AFC). This article is full of facts and well written. Thanks admin for posting

    3. Or not..

      Nobody can attain a level whereby they’re untouchable. Nobody. The idea Arsene can is fundamentally backwards and resignation to fantasy rather than reality. This analyzer kid paints a picture that managers objectives differ – yes in a general sense – however not at arsenal since George Grahams days.

      Since then Arsenal have established themselves as one of the top teams in the league who fights for titles. We haven’t since 2004, and that is why Wenger has run out of time. Emirates is the excuse many peddle but, while that limited our resources, we still had a team capable of winning trophies which has been the mandate since Graham established a successful era that Arsene took further forward.

      So saying each manager has a different mandate from the board is fine, but arsenal have always been judged by competitiveness in major trophies since GG. The resources in which to achieve that has naturally fluctuated with the Emirates project, but fans aren’t stupid and many understood our hands were tied. Yet poor management meant we didn’t even compete for domestic trophies like the FA cup or carling cup.

      There’s been no excuse since the Ozil purchase to be as poor with management as has been the case. Ozil himself was a terrible buy from Wenger, and the subsequent “improvement” from 2013 that was referenced is measure by what? FA cup success? Buying players of note? We’re not hamstrung financially now so the FA cup is not ‘success’ as is being made out. Buying players of name is irrelevant if they don’t improve the team in the biggest way possible (ozil). So I don’t agree at all there’s been evidence of improvement, not of the magnitude expected given the resources we now command. Man City went from mid table to wealthiest in Europe, they didn’t deem the carling cup success because it doesn’t equate to their resources and potential.

      Arsenal have the resources and potential to be among Europe’s biggest clubs, as is we’re an also ran in England and a joke in europe. But go ahead and preach the man responsible has earned his “right to be untouchable”.

  1. Haven’t bothered to read the article,the heading itself was enough to make me throw up.You my friend are certainly not an Arsenal fan,you are an Arsene fan and when he finally departs the club make sure to tag along. The likes of ancelotti, guardiola,mourinho have won it all and even they are not untouchable, so what makes a specialist in failure(yes I said it) untouchable??

    1. Oh FFS… ‘Not an Arsenal fan.’ Really??
      It’s always the AOB trying to discredit the other’s sides fan’s status. Wonder why that is??
      Your first sentence means you ignored his response to your final question… If you’re not even going to read his argument due to disagreeing with the premise, why would he respond to your drivel??

      1. the akb is no different to the aob, they both discredit each other an question there validity as a real fan.

        an both tend to be very choice with there stats, usually picking the best moment to drop these stats.

        us fence sitters are happy getting splints on our butts watching it all go down

        1. I don’t call myself an AKB or an AOB.
          I’m under no delusion there’s things he couldn’t do better, but I’m not going to call for his head after every loss either… You didn’t see United fans screaming for LVG’s head after they lost to PSV…
          But I disagree.. The ‘you’re not a real fan’ and questioning usually only comes from one side.. ‘If you support Wenger, you support 4th which isn’t a real fan’ is thrown around whenever there’s a positive comment.

          1. i diasgree josh..how many akbs use the phrases.
            ‘if you dont like it , support someone else’
            ‘tired of plastic fans like you’
            ‘why do you support arsenal if your not happy with our team’
            list goes on, the difference…the sheer volume .

            you got more aobs throwing those at akbs on here because simply put theres more aobs then akbs on here lol

      2. haven’t bothered reading because I have read enough of his comments to know that he will never blame wenger for anything but will always try to justify his failings with past achievements. To him the current state of the club doesn’t matter as long as wenger is in charge.

        1. @antiwenger.

          I even wonder if this is Arsenal FC or Arsene FC?

          It seems Wenger has his stubborn stance:

          “My way or the Highway”.

    2. Comment on an article you havnt read with out facts. Looking at the thumbs ton his site is getting worst rather than better. Fed up with so much disrespect for AFC fans. Yes some fans support AW and feel that hebisnthe beat optuon.; some thingbhe needs to go; some want to give him a chance and review again in the summer. All are AFC fans and probably nearly all have been for all their lives. They probably want to be fans for the rest of their lives. Is blogger and commentators on this site incapable of respect people supporting the beloved AFC with differing views. Sad if we can’t.

      1. i honestly believe wenger should go in the summer, he obviously wont.
        but every year more an more ppl are getting on his back, which lets be honest makes no difference to the outcome.

        just hope somewhere in the future he shows abit more of a ruthless streak, regarding transfers our current players and tactics

  2. if wenger leaves then so should ox ramsey debuchy giroud wilshere arteta flamini mertz ozil cazorla chambers rosicky gibbs.
    The new manager should buy
    new lb
    new cb
    new rb
    new dm
    new cm
    new rw
    new striker
    new am

  3. Using other coaches failures to justify your argument is nonsensical. Bayern Munchen let go of their treble winning coach Jupp Heynckes to bring Pep Guardiola. That says it all really.

  4. No one, and I mean no one should be allowed to be untouchable at a place of work, be it a president, king, freedom fighter, e.t.c especially when they are been paid to do that work!!! Not even people who have turned deserts into mini paradise have been left to do what they want.

    Arsene did not achieve all that while working for free, he might have made some personal sacrifices which we all recognize and we will forever be thankful. We sing songs about the man and have shown our respect to him since day one, some of us became fans during his time and fell in love with the team that he built. However everything that has a beginning has an end and in order for us to pick up from the strong foundation he has laid he needs to step aside. He is a football lover no doubt and he loves the club but he can still stick around the club in a different capacity and still enjoy the game.

    Arsene is an Arsenal legend and no one can take that away from him. Its just time for fresh blood who can cope with the requirements of the modern game, when Arsene was appointed he was a big gamble too and look what he turned out to be so lets not fear so much into gambling on another and even Arsene should appreciate and accept this as his the master gambler.

    1. Who said AW is untouchable. The only one I know of is MoanerAO. Who would love to see AW removed as manager of AFC. I wonder why if he is such a weak link? At this point in the time AW hasbthe confidence of the board; confidence of the non- board members but if results do match expectation dobyou really think AW will not be replaced. Stop letting MoanerAO push. The agenda. I have seen it happening when he returned.

  5. Great article analyser!!
    Informative comparison to both our period of success and other teams, even a squad and season as perfect as the invincible’s had it’s blunders. I do agree, and the work done since 2013 has been great from a squad perspective. Only Koscielny and Theo remain from that RVP reliant first-team.

    But if you’re expecting any form of constructive response from the opposing argument I would not hold your breath… Brace yourself for ‘4th place mentality’ and ‘accepting mediocrity’ comments galore!! I’m betting there will be a much bigger focus on the CL performances and losses than the fact we’re 3pts from the top…
    While neglecting the fact that the financial muscle they all want flexed so badly is only now a possibility due to the careful planning and years of competing with the big spenders of the league while laying the foundations for a better future.

  6. haven’t bothered reading because I have read enough of his comments to know that he will never blame wenger for anything but will always try to justify his failings with past achievements. To him the current state of the club doesn’t matter as long as wenger is in charge.

    1. @antiwanger
      Yet you managed to make sure we knew this, twice…Dude your logic is too sound…Lmfao

    2. Children always have an unrealistic expectations and are not grateful of what they have. They also have deluded expectation. You’re not a child, so you just must be psychotic. Facts are facts. Only an ignoramus would argue……

  7. Not saying I agree with everything in the article but do most of it and it’s a good atyicle imho. At least I read it unlike others! There should be a way of not letting people comment without reading to stop morons posting!

  8. I really thought Adam Kemp was passed away. Last time I hear about him was before we won FA Cup two years ago, when he predicted our dooms day which wasn’t happen.
    Like it or not, Arsene has BIG contribution to build Arsenal these days in many aspect beside football. Very rare managers have done such job. We should honor him for that nonetheless.
    However, I think this season is gonna be his last gamble after not optimized 200 M in hand (Lord Harris you better not lie!) at summer window. AW could be wrong and so do I. We’ll found out.
    For Arsenal, I’ll always hope for the best WITH or WITHOUT Arsene. I’ll stand up behind my team not the other end only because I hate the manager. Lets AW finish his job. COYG!!!

  9. The big problem here is that this issue is just confined to the CL – a comp we weren’t going to win anyway.

    League start has been relatively good in the context of how other teams are doing.

    1. # Robin’
      You mean that ECL is finished for us and we have a good chance for EPL ! How delusional are you. The best could happen this year is 4th place not because we deserve it simply because Liverpool and Spuds are not good enough to take it away from us. Arsene Trophy is all you can hope for, oh at the end of summer yes Emirate Cup.
      I say it loudly WENGER OUT ASAP

  10. I don’t care what U say @Analyzer, U can go marry Arsene Wenger. Did U hear he’s divorced now? We at Arsenal want a change, and Wenger isn’t that!
    Wenger Out, Wenger Out, Wenger Giroud Out!!!!!!!!!!!!

  11. I want a new manager too but sadly the cold hard truth is that we are stuck with him until he resigns. The board won’t sack him.

    Even if they did, there are only a few managers I would like to see sign up (Guardiola, Klopp, Martinez, Benitez and Ancelotti). I’d prefer to keep Wenger if the alternative was someone like Moyes or McLaren or someone like that.

  12. 007 I agree with 100%. You have talked like 12 wise men put together mate !. I think you have another Arsenal fan who has the exact same reflections as yours sir.This club is too big for anyone to be untouchable.For once can’t the so-called owners empathize with the hard-working and faithful fans who spend a fortune in sustaining this beloved club,thereby making their (owners’) life what it is?

  13. No one is questioning Wenger’s past achievements, but he has had three seasons and 5 transfer windows to get the necessary players i.e a top sttiker and a dm which are glaring deficiencies in our squad and yet he ignores it and this summer was an example of how delusional he has become, by making statements like there no players available which could improve our squad, while treble winner barca even with their transfer ban get couple in, same with Bayern, Madrid and all other big clubs because they know you have constantly improve their squads to compete, and by making that statement he implied that he has one of the best sqauds in Europe, so can you please tell me whether you are optimistic about our chances against Bayern? Let alone the shot at CL and am extended shot at the title, he keeps making same mistakes again and again, he keeps saying how we have learned from the Monaco debacle and yet commit same mistake again on Tuesday and the era between 1998-2005 just shows how poor Wenger is in Europe, when he had arguably the most potent team in Europe and yet he couldn’t win the CL even once, especially the invincible season when we undoubtedly had the best team in Europe and yet were knocked out in quarters by Chelsea which again just goes to show how poor and inept the guy is in Europe

  14. Nonsense!……….i hate the way our beloved club is run………… Cocky ,arrogant, selfish bottlenecks at the helm

  15. This article just shows that majority of the Arsenal fans are content and deserve the situation compiling at the club right now… If Wenger was willing to mention that “we are lucky and privileged to just be in the league” you will find morons in this club who will agree and “he knows best”…!!

    The fact and the matters is, this is a man who is not rated in his own country… I know we are from the same country and have the chance to watch all the football programs during the weekend (in France)…
    The last he was on a panel they were asking him why and how come he was still Arsenal manager…!! Wenger could not answer… I reckon if you ask him the question here he will have a all statement explaining why he still the man for the job.

    Anyway, he has one year left and may be more, if he wants to. The fans have no say on the matter because, to be fair, they have no weight on anything happening at the club (rarely seen as a matter of fact).
    Like or not, he is the “man” and he does what he wants (clear for years).

    A pundit here, was talking about Arsenal being a top club… May be in the UK because on the European scene, we are nobody and it is proven years after years.

    A guy on Arsenal tv said that Chelski had no history and only money… Well who gives a f*ck, I mean seriously!! Liverpool have a major history and are a bigger club than Arsenal (history wise, we never won the CL), but look at them now…!!

    Champions Leagues?
    We will never, never, never win it… It is too late. We do not have the foundations and despite the money in the bank, the players we need will be too much of a budget.

    Let’s not forget that I can see Ozil (who wants to play in Turkey and back in Germany) and Sanchez (who wants to go back to Italy) leaving in the next 2 years, easily…!

  16. The reality is that both AOB and AKB have valid points…at the end we won’t fully know what’s going on inside the club 100% unless your a board member but most likely won’t be allowed to expand yourself…that being said singling out Wenger the way it’s done is simply not right…the board, the manager & the players all should share the blame for what’s happening that is all and YES winning trophies when that hasn’t been the case for a LT is progress…not as much as you and myself would like but it is what it is!!Tell me you don’t want them and it’s a different conversation that we’re having as far as I’m concerned it’s better than nothing!

  17. Just because A was agreed manager 10 years ago doesn’t give him the right to untouchable now. It’s Arsenal Fc not Arsene Fc and it’s a shame more fans don’t remember that.

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