Why I Don’t Want Arteta To Be Sacked by Dan
In my lifetime this is the most worried I have been about the club I love and if it will ever return to its former levels? So please understand that this is bigger than me saying ‘I told you so.’.
Last summer I was called negative for questioning peers who were predicting this squad were good enough to mount a title challenge.
When I pointed out that Stan Kroenke’s response to our worst start in decades was to slash the wage bill, I was accused of having an agenda.
When I factually pointed out we have gone backwards since Mr Wenger left, I got called names.
My loyalty was even questioned when I would challenge readers on arrogant statements that (before the Liverpool game) we were going to win every match in the run in.
I have read players be over-hyped, youngsters who haven’t achieved anything called great players, etc.
What you would have never heard me say or seen me write is that Mikel Arteta needs to be sacked.
I’ll challenge statements like ‘he’s tactically better then Arsene Wenger’. I’ll maintain he’s our manager because he was a cheap option, so happy to land such a high-profile vacancy he will accept limitations. Yet I have never called for the Spaniard to lose his job.
Just like I have never agreed that the greatest coach in our history should get pushed out.
I was harsher on Emery purely because I felt he had lost the dressing room.
Again this article is not about who is right or wrong. It’s about observing from afar.
About being so emotionally invested that you are able to read a person, not trust their motives and accept long term they will never change.
It’s like being introduced to your best friend’s partner who every few months seems to hurt your mate.
It’s not about your personal feelings towards that individual. You just want your buddy to be content and realising this person doesn’t not make him or her happy. You decide it won’t work, long before they split up.
The Kroenke Family first took proper power of Arsenal in 2008. Compare the squad then to now. Compare the brand of football.
Fabregas won a title with Chelsea (after we refused to trigger a buy-back clause from Barca), Van Persie went to Old Trafford to be a champion (after correctly disagreeing with the level of ambition in North London), Adebayor, Clichy, Touré, Nasri, Sagna all went to Man City who we became a feeder club for.
History will show that most of that money wasn’t reinvested, meaning we were no longer contenders for the bigger prizes.
At the time though, many (including myself) brought into the notion that once stadium debt was paid off, we could compete. To be fair that was a business model put in place long before the Kroenkes.
Arsenal wanting to be self-financed meant that once a year Mr Wenger had to raise funds while ensuring Champions League revenue.
The Frenchman’s love for the Gunners was manipulated. His employers played on his heart strings to keep him, but equally knew out of loyalty he take the bullets for them.
I predicted (and have been correct) that the day Mr Wenger left, we would realise how difficult it was to ‘only’ finish top 4 working for a man with zero ambition. Because even when we were so close and just needed to take that extra step, Stan Kroenke wouldn’t invest a single penny of his own money.
I remember being 5 points clear in January with Almunia in goal but our board refusing to spend 2 million on Schwarzer. It’s widely accepted that our stinginess cost us a Suarez and Higuaín.
We could have got Gary Cahill for 6 million but wouldn’t increase our bid from 3 million. That’s when we really needed a defender.
After we beat Villa in the Cup Final, and it felt like we had momentum but we only improved ourselves with Cech and no one else.
One of the biggest misconceptions within our fanbase was you either had to be passionately Wenger in or out. Like there couldn’t be a grey area.
When debating his qualities, I never insisted he was flawless or didn’t make mistakes. I just had zero faith in us getting anyone better so what was the point?
Were there younger coaches who could do better in 2018? Sure. Were we going to get them? No.
Luis Enrique and Allegri have stated they sat down for an interview and withdrew their application the moment they heard the transfer budget.
To me Wenger was the glue. Our worst-case scenario was at least we were looked after by someone who cared.
The likes of AFTV were so preoccupied by getting change, they didn’t ask ‘would that change be better.’ It wouldn’t make our owners any more ambitious. They will still prioritise value over quality (Ramsey). They will still let players run down contracts, slash the wage bill and only afford loans in January (Sanchez).
One of their best bit of business was this past New Year.
With us 10th, having zero creativity, they paid Ozil to leave and replaced him with a loan signing. Even worse they got the majority of fans thinking it was good!
So I sit here with deja vu.
For months, the Europe League was papering over the cracks. The moment we went out of Europe, the inquests would begin.
Should Arteta go?
It’s not even an issue to me because that would imply he’s responsible for our decline. He’s a rookie who’s been thrown in at the deep end. You get what you pay for. He’s a nice guy, his affection for the club is genuine. He certainly does not deserve the critics to be personal.
If I woke up and heard, he got sacked I couldn’t argue, with his record.
Yet here is all that would happen….
We get a new manager who would start well. The likes of AFTV would say how great he is.
Social media would get carried away over a new signing, even though they never heard of them.
He will play two good games and that will be enough to be labelled a great talent (he will be immune from criticism).
An academy graduate would play well in the League Cup forcing Gooners to claim we have the best youngsters in the world.
A fanbase would spend a year debating. One half saying how great our players are, the other pointing out our position in the table.
About December time, supporters will say get to January so we can get rid of ‘dead wood’.
When we get to January we will be told ‘we can only afford loans.’
In the background the wage bill will be slashed.
We will spend approx. net spend 50 -80 million. Manchester clubs and Chelsea will spend more.
Then, scared to admit we over-hyped average players, we will sack the manager and repeat the whole process.
It’s very rare that fans are wishing for a manager to leave and it not even close to being on the owners agenda. Maybe the Kroenke Family need Arteta to take some of the heat off them?
Unless the owners find a buyer ,or are serious about re-building the squad (and they haven’t in over a decade) then we may just as well keep Arteta.
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