Why can’t Bernd Leno admit his time at Arsenal was not a success at all?

Bernd Leno has been talking in preparation for his reunion with Arsenal this week.

This is what he shared with the Evening Standard: “I don’t have toxic feelings or bad energy for Arsenal. It didn’t end the perfect way but my reception at the Emirates was very good. I get fans coming up to me saying ‘thank you for your four years …. you were very good’.

It’s great that the 31-year-old is professional enough to not be bitter about his time in North London and that Gooners are respectful when meeting him in person. There’s certainly zero reason to question the German’s work ethic and desire when he was a Gunner. It’s simply a case of his statement …. well it isn’t true is it?

He wasn’t very good. If he was very good he wouldn’t have been dropped in the first place, and with all respects to Fulham, a bigger queue would have formed with his asking price only 8 million.

It took a section of our fanbase way too long to realise he made too many errors to be trusted at the level we aspire to be. The same people who called 8th and 5th progress and a ‘fine season’?

There was a period where supporters debated he was the third best keeper in the division, despite being in goal for factually our worst League finish in 25 years!

His mistakes contributed to there being zero European Football at Arsenal for the first time in quarter of a century.
The Everton winner that slipped through his hands?
The red card at Wolves?
Running out to claim corners and leaving an open goal for Chelsea and Brentford to score?
Charging out of goal so Benfica could walk the ball in?
Literally passing the ball so Vienna could score?
Just to name a few ……

Wasn’t he partly responsible for our winner on his return to his former club?

His lack of awareness is incredible, almost bordering on arrogance how he takes zero accountability for why he is no longer our number one.

This statement tells you why he’s not our number One anymore: “I was happy with my performance. Even when they dropped me, I did nothing wrong.’

There’s a difference between believing in yourself and having faith in your ability compared to not taking any accountability when something goes wrong.

After his original transfer he blamed politics for the reason of his exit. On international duty he would inform his national media that his manager had never bothered to tell him what he had done that warranted being dropped.

There have been too much talent Arteta has given up on if he feels they don’t match his ethos. In his first job he’s been allowed by his employers to wash hands of assets, paying them to sit at home, ripping up contracts, etc, instead of training and teaching, getting the best out of the resources he has. There are too many names for there not to to be something about that.

Top sports people though are able to assess their own performance, they don’t need to informed what they do well or not well.

In Amazon’s All Or Nothing Series Ramsdale sat in the dressing room downbeat after letting a Liverpool goal beat him at his near post. Long after his peers had left, he remained sat with his head down.

There were other parts of the documentar, where we won but he was frustrated at not keeping a clean sheet. That’s a difference in the mentality between the two goalies.

Once a Gooner always a Gooner.

No one can fault Leno’s effort, but for anyone to say his 4 years were a success are wrong.


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  1. Very harsh article Dan. He said he” felt his time with us was very good”, not that he was very good…
    At least he can say, he didn’t concede the second fastest goal in EPL history. Just sayin 😁

  2. What a spitefully wrong and shameful article against a fine player and fine man. DAN SMITH does NOT speak for me and I doubt very much indeed that he speaks for many other Gooners either.

    Altogether a nasty article. Nasty and mean minded in the extreme.

    I disassociate completely myself from ALL that “negative DAN” writes.

    1. Jon is you think he was a fine player I would question your knowledge and also point out if he were a fine player why was he dropped ?

      Can I also ask why over the years its okay for you to be negative towards say a Xakha ?

      but i cant about Leno
      Fair question ?

      1. Dan I would no more write a whole detailed article slaughtering a mans character, than I would fly to the moon. I held little respect fo your negativity anyway and any that DID remain, has now left, along with reading this deliberately spiteful and unnecessary piece.

        I did NOT say he was the best keeper we could have ever had and consider Ramsdale a good upgrade. But that is besides the point!

    2. again Jon what you called Xakha was fine worse …and Giroud , Mustafi , Bellerin , Mr wneger , people on this site

    1. a nasty piece of work because my opinion is he wasn’t very good ?
      Think some of you take things a tad bit serious ?

      1. No, it’s the mean way in which you express your opinions. You may be right about Leno but the tone you use means no one will listen.

  3. Agree with you. Decent shot stopper on his day, prone to making mistakes, and not fit for purpose with the ball at his feet. And we let Martinez go through blind loyalty to Leno…

  4. As someone who has said that moving from 8th to 5th and with everything else that was going on off the pitch was progress, I didn’t even want us to sign Leno !! The fella always had mistakes in him, be it with Leverkusen or the German national team.

    Thankfully we have a much better goalie these days.

  5. I can only second what has been written above in reply.
    I’d be ashamed to put my name to that. Rude about Leno – who albeit wasn’t the best, but did his best, before managing to sling a Molotov cocktail at Arteta

      1. Dan I wasn’t his greatest fan but would not have gone to the lengths you have done to make an article out of a man who moved on to pastures new.
        Your tone surprised me.

          1. I can’t help it if you don’t think your article was nasty/rude. I did. It was unnecessary. He’s a moderately good keeper who, like Ramsdale has an ego to massage My understanding is that they have by the very nature of their role in the team we’d to have one to take the flack that a mistake can bring

              1. which bit was rude though ?
                Are we now not allowed to say when a player was poor or made mistakes ?
                Have we reached a point where we have to write every player who played for us was brilliant ?
                The irony is im writing a piece on Bellerin , a player who fans were nasty too , including on this site

                1. Oh Lord!
                  Not interested in pursuing this
                  I wouldn’t be interested in having a go at Bellerin as he is past history just like Pepe who although still on the books is past history
                  My last comment on the subject Dan
                  Hopefully someone else will attract your attention

                2. Author, that’s why you are a writer and they are (Probably) not. Your articles would not always resonate with everyone and you’d be criticized sometimes, many times maybe. But You don’t have to be seriously fazed. Get your facts right, but be courageous to make your opinion known. Then, be at peace. Keep writing, make corrections where you can, but do not be scared of criticism in stating your (informed) opinions.

            1. Well said Sue!

              DAN,in his usual “won’t face up to reality” manner,simply refuses to see he was being nasty and hitting a fine man below the belt.

              Why he thought this spiteful piece would help us ot himself, I cannot imagine.

              It has certainly made many Gooners lose what respect they had for DAN and it is a massive own goal IMO. Silly pig headed man.

              1. Not really ,
                I’m asking which bit was nasty and your failing to give one example
                ‘ won’t face up to reality ‘ or won’t agree with you Jon ?

              2. What you called Xakha Jon …..

                How true and how depressingly true. Why, oh why, do we keep XHAKA !?



                Is that not nasty and rude ?
                What a massive own goal you have made

              3. You slate him for his post for being rude and then, you do much worse by being flat vulgar toward him. Quite human of you.
                I read the piece and it was not particularly vulgar, only pointing out that the Goalkeepper’s time at the Emirates was not as flawless as he made it sound. While I might not choose to slate Bernd Leno (He did give his bit to the Arsenal Cause), I do think the criticism on the Author (Dan) is unwarranted. Also, calling him “silly pig-headed man” is so so so ridiculously wrong. I think Justarsenal.com should take note of such unsopposed remarks.

                1. They are definitely being noted. Giving reasons why you don’t agree with his opinions is one thing but these personal attacks are uncalled for and reflects badly on the characters who make them…

  6. I agree with every sentence written by Dan, it’s plain and simple the man was/is too arrogant to own responsibility and improve. I’m happy he’s gone, I don’t know his personal life off the pitch as it doesn’t bother me. I’m concerned what happens on the pitch. Good article Dan, keep writing many more. This article is about facts and truth, and sometimes the truth hurts.

  7. Not sure why there’s been such a strong reaction here. I didn’t find it to be a nasty or spiteful article, it’s an opinion expressed in a straightforward, but, to me, inoffensive manner.
    I do get the impression Leno thinks a bit more highly of himself than his performances warrant, I don’t think he really owned up to his mistakes, and I don’t think he was a success in his time here. Don’t hate the guy, don’t miss him either.

    1. because mate we live in a world where unless you agree with someone 100 percent its nasty lol

  8. Think you forgot his first 2 seasons here Dan ,probably our best player and was brilliant in that time ,injuries and change of manager changed his fortunes .

  9. Am not one that takes pleasure in being critical of present and pass players, but a think somewhere between Dan post and the firm reactions lfrom fans lays the truth.

    I want to wish him well though in his future endeavors.

  10. Very harsh article tbh he wasn’t as good as Rammy, however I remember many games over his time with us in which he kept us in the game, & earnt us points with some excellent saves

    1. wonder why our manager dropped him then and sold him if he were so good?
      Wonder why he didn’t go to a top 6 rival or one of the big clubs in Europe ?
      Mystery ?

  11. Even in his first 2 season’s here he made mistakes that cost us goals, and in some cases, points !

  12. Still can’t see the point of poking dirty fingers in the eyes of an ex-player who served us well. We are better than that. We are in a better place now. We are top of the league. Time to be humble and show some class!

    1. Rfrancis, What you write is PRECISELY the point!
      Whatever made DAN decide to dig up a player who left a year or more ago and write a character assassination piece on him is not only a huge mistake, which will harm DANS reputation , but also shows how desperate DAN IS TO FIND SOMETHING , ANYTHING , EVEN THIS AWFUL PIECE, to keep Dans name prominent on JA.
      I actually feel sorry for Dan, as til now, I NEVER CONSIDERED HIM A FOOL TO HIMSELF. But I do now!

      1. And yet Jon is allowed to write this

        How true and how depressingly true. Why, oh why, do we keep XHAKA !?



        Explain the difference

  13. While i don’t agree with Dans article ,some of the posters above seem to have forgotten what they have written over the years ,it doesn’t matter if it is in a Article format or just a post .
    What I have noticed once again is the same 4-5 posters that have a problem with Dan not the article itself ,and again that old adage comes up “jumping on the bandwagon “
    It’s verging on bullying because of past articles that you don’t agree with ,Herd mentality at its finest ,I knew straight away who would be gobbling off as soon as one started .

    1. Thanks Dan it is noticed
      The irony that people say I’m being rude and then call me names
      Zero debate about Leno just all about me
      I’m okay though mate I know what it is
      I get the most commented articles most of the time so people feel need to put me down
      Its same few people who dont even debate the topic

      Like you said it’s okay for same readers to critique Giroud , Mustafi, Xakha , etc

      1. Yea don’t get me wrong Dan I’m just as bad as everyone else ,I have my favourites and I have players over the years I don’t like ,human nature.
        But like you said ,it’s about you not the Article which is sad ,I’m sure I’ll get a few negative comments towards me now ,but to be honest I couldn’t give 2 fcks as they know I’ll give it back .
        It is what what it is .

        1. Yeah think people use this as some sort of social thing rather then a football opinion site

          This is a platform to debate Arsenal
          I seriously think some people don’t have family or friends and treat this like it’s everything to them

    2. It seems that way. I find it hypocritical that they couldn’t answer the questions asked. SueP and Jon above. If you attack the writer nastiness at least you should have the decency of answering what he is asking you. The fact that you couldn’t (and not for the first time) shows that Dan is the problem and not the article. You can’t write something without defending it hoping the others will come to your defense. Only Anders was missing today.

      PS I don’t agree with the article. It was uncalled for.

  14. One suggestion @Pat
    24 hour clock on each post ,would it not look better ?or is it just me that it bothers?
    So much prefer 18.30 to 6.30 pm .
    Weird suggestion but my numbers OCD kicked in 😂

    1. Serious question DAN, what good would it do andhow would it benefit anyone?

      Give me a good reason and maybe I could agree with you. Not against it, IF if benefits anyone, other than your OCD.

      1. I asked if it would look better Jon ,nothing more nothing less ,would it benefit anyone at all? OFC not .

  15. For Dan Smith
    Fair – average article. Certainly not rude but maybe a bit Harsh.
    I do not agree with your conclusions.
    There are many occasions he saved us and helped in the momentum (which I keep going on about) and dynamics of the game.
    I would say Martinez was better as is Ramsdale presently. But we have had many extremely poor goalies previously. He was a decent enough goalie brought in UE.

  16. Unfair and harsh article by Dan on a player who always gave his best. In his first season Leno was one of the best performing players at Arsenal (polling well in the best and fairest); his shot stopping earning Arsenal many points. To my knowledge he has never disrespected Arsenal following his departure.

  17. The article is unnecessarily insulting of Leno who is a good goalkeeper and a great professional.
    Even if there are better goalkeepers this does not mandate the casual dismissal of someone who gave their best and was a great shot stopper. He was very good at times although he did make certain mistakes and there are limitations in his game.
    Part of the issue with the piece is a narrow focus on negatives to justify the viewpoints. It is also difficult to understand why the author takes such exception to the comments made by Leno which were by no means disrespectful.
    The author has also managed to shoehorn insults to other Arsenal fans and the manager into an article about Leno.
    I have to agree with those that say this is a dishonorable and malicious article.

  18. Seriously Dan, your articles appear to be deliberately controversial, and as such justifiably attracts a good deal of criticism, and you must surely expect some unpleasant feedback, so you could win back some support here with an apology for the outrageous slanders you made against Liverpool supporters following last season’s Champions League final in Paris now that EUFA has admitted to most of the blame and exonerated all supporters from both teams completely.

    1. I dont mind unpleasant feedback ….
      It’s just no one is giving feedback
      So whats mean ?
      Me saying he made errors ?
      Me saying he wasn’t good enough which his manager agreed with ?
      No one is making an argument
      Say which bit you disagree with

  19. I’ve not said anything in your article is mean Dan, but pointed out that as they’re so regularly controversial you will get some unpleasant feedback, which you have from the above comments (unless you yourself find them pleasant), and I myself prefer them to some of the wimp stuff on JU which seems to me to more interested in quantity rather than quality, but you’ve ignored my apology appeal unless you hopefully plan a separate article on the subject.

  20. why can’t we take a look at the defense that Leno stands behind at time? if Leno takes the goal pole for now, I do believe we going to get the best of him again…

    1. Yet that defence was in front of Martinez when he came into the team and we got better results. It seemed that Martinez gave the defence more confidence.

  21. Well, a reasonable enough article by Dan and why am I not surprised to find the usual suspects disagreeing vehemently with him, lol. And when one of those usual suspects says that they are a proponent of free speech and against woke culture but behave exactly like a woke person when Dan has written some honest, upfront words about what he thinks Leno did or did not, is the best irony. Again, people getting offended when asked which bit was offensive and just condemning the writer, lol. Isnt that what you call Snow Flake mentality?

    Back to the article, I feel it was a fair piece. Gave due props to the man for his professionalism, at the same time was a critical commentary on his displays with us. For me Leno was a decent enough keeper for a upper mid table side (better than agent Cech atleast lol) with very good shot-stopping (top 3 levels which was alluded in the article) but overall had too many mistakes in him. Also agreed about the bit of him helping in our win against Fulham, one of his trademark corner errors but once a gooner always a gooner I guess lol. Cheers Dan. Nice piece albeit a little too straightforward for some I guess, but definitely within the site guidelines and not warranting the overreaction you got above.

    1. Although agreed with Jax above. A reflective piece on the Liverpool supporters would be welcome from your side Dan, considering you did write extensively on the subject.

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