Winning the Europa League would just be papering over the cracks at Arsenal

All our eggs are in one basket now that the top-four is basically out of reach, but even if Arsenal win the Europa League it is just papering over the cracks.

Let’s start right at the very top with the owner Stan Kroenke, he is not backing the club financially when all our competitors are set to spend significant amounts in the summer transfer window, and that is not sustainable long term.

Then there is the manager Unai Emery, his away record this season in the Premier League was woeful, his tactics questionable, team selection confusing and his rotation policy is nonsensical.

Then there is the team – and where does one start there?

There is no world class player, all our closest rivals have at least one world class player (Man Utd apart) and in some cases two or three, we have none.

Put it this way, how many of our defenders would get into the Man City, Liverpool or even Tottenham teams?

Would any of our midfielders get into those same teams? Nope.

Our so-called best player Mesut Ozil is a disgrace to the label best player and that is being polite.

Our frontline is decent but they have come up short too many times. Far too many misses at critical times have cost us dearly and we cannot hide from that fact.

I would estimate that we need to replace at least seven first-team players, we have some youngsters that should be bloodied and used more often, Liverpool does it, Tottenham do it, so why not us?

Yup, winning the Europa League would be great for sure but unless there is a massive clearout of average players, the manager getting his strategy right and the owner investing some serious money into the team, all we will be doing is papering over the cracks and kidding ourselves we are a big club.

Updated: May 6, 2019 — 10:39 am

53 Comments

  1. winning a European trophy is papering over the cracks? that’s a first

  2. If we were to go on and win the EL.. yes I’d be very happy, but…… the thought of more heartbreak & humiliation in the CL …….😩

    1. Sue this is what we wanted ,finish fifth with spurs in forth and then win the EL kick spurs out out of the Champs league.That would be sweet wont it,Especially if we invest heavily in the summer

      1. I know, Goona… it’s just frustrating how we’ve played in the last month or so – doesn’t fill me with hope haha! I think it has proved that we do need to spend (big time!) 🙏 and get rid of some!!

        1. Lets sign the whole ajax team hahaha,solved

          1. Hahaha yeah, that’ll do 😄

          2. The English FA is allocated a maximum of 5 places in the Champions League, so if a team outside the top four wins the Europa League they do not replace one of the top four.

          3. shaat,i can imagine getting knocked out of the UCL first before them

          4. Sign the entire Ajax team including their manager. lol

      2. Five epl teams will qualify for champions league if we win the europa league…… we can’t kick spurs out….. we should be more worried about Chelsea denying us entry into the champions league via the europa, after beating us to a top four finish, now that is going to be cruel, because unlike us they’ve won it before, and they’ve already qualified for UCL next season………. and to think we had it all in our grasp about a month ago….. just annoying

  3. We won’t win it Chelsea will we or so bad thank God the season is nearly over so I can not think about arsenal how s..t we or

  4. We aren’t winning Europa League. These players don’t have the bottle. Weak mentality, they have to much pressure in them now. I wouldn’t be surprised if we lose to Valencia

  5. Don’t be silly. It’s not papering over any cracks. No reasonable fan is under any illusion that winning Europa is going to solve anything on its own. The cracks will still be as clear as the nose on your face.

    But it’s part of the equation. It increases the transfer kitty. It tempts players who want to play CL. It helps erode the team’s spineless mentality. And most importantly brings a smile to our collective miserable faces.

    I’m all in for Eurepa.

    1. Spot on, Trudeau. Most fans and pundits didn’t expect Arsenal to be this close in Emery’s first season.

  6. As much as the players have been so gutless and incompetent, I still cannot for the love of god understand UE and his tactical awareness. Why does he have to chop and change formation with every game? Even the most gifted of players would struggle to adjust, talkless of our joke of a team. Shameless bottlers.

    1. Under Wenger it was the same tactics, lineup, and formation for about a decade, and we the fans were begging Wenger to be more tactically aware, switch things up, and drop players. It was only for about the last year when Wenger FINALLY used a different formation, but even then, it was still the same tactics, and he quickly got exposed.

      Emery is doing what the fans asked for, and yet people are still complaining! I’ll admit that he tinkers too much, but I’d rather have what he’s doing compared to our previous manager who would never change anything, and was so predictable. As of about 6 weeks ago when I last saw this stat, Emery’s substitutions were more effective than any other manager’s in the league. I am not saying he hasn’t got it wrong here and there, and that’s what I am hearing about his subs against Brighton, but over the course of the season he’s been outstanding with the subs.

      It’s time to blame the players and not the manager. That team Emery picked should have won the game easily, yet everyone is focusing on his tactics and subs? Look at the lineup people!

      1. The fact that most of these players have now failed both Arsene Wenger and Unai Emery, two well respected managers, says a lot.
        It’s about time the players took a good long look at themselves, their professional pride, mentality and failure to recognize the opportunities they have missed (4 points from 18) and their ability to perform under pressure.

      2. Emery is confused. I deliberately did not comment, read lots of comments since yesterday because of people like you who makes silly excuses for the manger. Arsene Wenger gave us so much. When the game started the pundits said “when we are in a mood like this Brighton should be carful” that was when Wenger was the manager. No team fear us nowadays, no respect for what we can do because we are SHIT under Emery. Wenger made us think we could win something, gave us hope, entertainments, fancy football, skill full football, tiki take, made the stadium full to capacity. This manger is taking us down. He doesn’t know what he is downing. No one can tell me the players are bad because they are the same team that started the season (22 games unbeaten) until Emery lost his head, and now we are a proper shamble. Let just tinnily hope for Europa.

        1. PAT, YOU ARE SO WIDE OF THE MARK AS TO THE REAL PROBLEM THAT IT IS LAUGHABLE BUT SAD TOO. I will need to spell it out for you. Kroenke and also so many players who are not bothered . Simple as that we need Kroenkes financial aid to help the blameless Emery to shift out the spongers and replace then with others with backbone. Incredible that you fail to perceive where the REAL problem lies! You would rather fool yourself. Sigh!

          1. Jon Fox, please respect yourself and never you call me names, I will be so disrespectful to you if you can not talk to me without calling me names. I am not a fool. You and I have had disagreements over issues and I have come on top. You rubbish Ozil I supported him, told you if his football skills and contributions. You ended up agreeing with me, Eddie and sue (2) you and I argued about Emery doing a fantastic job, I totally disagree with you and now you have seen results your, then you simply have another excuse KORENKE. Tell me who is a FOOL between you and I. Your intelligence fail you so don’t put that blame on me foolllll

          2. Jon Fox, if you want to get an employment, you have to fit the job specifications, you will back yourself with experience, your inner strength, mental capabilities, trust in the employer and yourself. Emery knew what job he applied for, how much was available, what the players are like, their individual abilities. Emery was not blindfolded into the job. So I believe he thought he could do the job with the available resources. By the way what happened to the Emery that guided these players at the beginning of the season, where his that Emery, becomes the football we play now was not the same we were playing then? Emery is lost, he changes players, method, tactics everytime because he isn’t sure anymore. All good teams are very consistent in the way they play.

          3. South african Gunner

            We all know emery is not an elite manager. Wenger was elite for about 15 years. His last 7 to 10 years he was stubborn but he never lost to wolves or even dropped points against brighton. He was bad against the big teams but he hammered the small teams. Emery has no football philosophy that is why PSG got rid of him. He comes with an dismal away record from sevilla days. Still i back him as he is the manager but like the players he is equally to be blamed

  7. We NEED a new coach. This Emery guy is simply confused.

  8. The good part is every one agrees Leichsteiner, Mustafi, Socrates, Monreal, Carl Jenkinson, Xhaka, Elneny, Ozil, Henrikh Mkitaryan, Iwobi are utter rubbish and no one defends them like before. Ozil has been exposed, before the excuse was Giroud, now we have Lacazette and PEA, so the excuse is Iwobi. The sad part is that all the above will want to stay and there is some gossip about Lacazette. So there goes our hard working Lacazette to make way for some basement bargain buy from League 2 to fill the void. Another point to note is that Torrera started off well, now he too is slowing down.This goes to show that something is wrong with Emery and his coaching team. Was not the same team on a 22 game winning streak? What will be the purpose of competing in the UCL if we cannot dispatch teams like Brighton, Southampton, Palace, Wolves, Everton? I have observed fans talk trash about Stan, but he is not involving himself in the club administration. Did he oppose PEA, Lacazette, Sanchez, Ozil, Mustafi, Xhaka, Perez, etc. The scouts, manager and contracts team are to be blamed. The fact is that the club is not properly managed, coach is not EPL/Arsenal material and players have slowed down or are in a comfort zone. The coach has to take the responsibility and step down. His tactics are too defensive. We moved on from Wenger’s tiki-taka to play from the back, the boring side/back passes and concede on the counter attack. Only hope is in Raul to get us some good ball carrying play makers of the Carzola / Rocisky type.

  9. Did Ajax spend big?
    Did tottenham spend big?
    Did
    Crystal palace spend big?
    Did Brighton spend big?
    It was obvious Unai Emery is getting his tactics wrong always repeating mistakes…….God save my Arsenal….locomotive xhaka our defensive midfielder Lucas our attacking midfielder….we shouldn’t waste money Emery can’t get good players eg (Denis Suarez)

  10. Did Ajax spend big?
    Did tottenham spend big?
    Did
    Crystal palace spend big?
    Did Brighton spend big?
    It was obvious Unai Emery is getting his tactics wrong always repeating mistakes…….God save my Arsenal….locomotive xhaka our defensive midfielder Lucas our attacking midfielder….we shouldn’t waste money Emery can’t get good players eg (Denis Suarez) he was busy looking for old players he worked with,aging players.

  11. We will especially be papering over our poor manager. we made a mistake appointing UE. Up to now his style of play and vision of play is unclear.

    1. henry, who should Arsenal have appointed, who was available and would have come to the Emirates given the then current squad, the available transfer budget , the self sustaining financial model and Kroenke’s ownership?
      I can’t see Emery staying if he is not supported in the transfer market, which will please people such as yourself.

      1. I believe your long standing question was answered by someone in a previous post. Some of the names I remember touted were Jardim, Nuno and Marco Silva.

        1. Arteta was also available, though untested. What am saying is that no matter how poor our squad is, no one can tell exactly what Emery’s footballing philosophy is. He seems to gamble all the time. And where is our beautiful football. At least even if we dont wint, why is our football so boring?

          1. Jardim was sacked by Monaco, replaced with Thierry Henri, who in turn was sacked and Jardim reinstated. None of Jardim, Nuno or Marco Silva applied for the job at the time Emery was appointed and there is nothing to say they could be attracted to the Emirates from their current positions, given the conditions at Arsenal FC.

          2. Emery was appointed. Because he was the cheap option ,he’s a manger who is not going to rock the boat .do you think he will leave if he’s not backed in the transfer market ?i don’t think so .
            The arsenal board are some of the most rotten to the core people that could run a club ,snakes ,do you think they appointed emery because they thought he was going to win ya the premiership ,no he was bought in to carry on as usual and to just keep us competing without spending what is required.

  12. Crispen your seeing what am seeing,what kind of football are playing I don’t know 😞

  13. Hademe Precious

    No need dreaming of winning the EL,these bunch of lifeless players are too unreliable. Holy shit….Mkhititaryan must go,then,Xhaka,Mustafi,Mesut is shit,Elnany must go and perhaps,Jenkinson.

  14. @Crispen ….Emery’s not that bad it’s the players and Kroenke, for a new manager to finish 5th in the EPL the most competitive lg in the world with those players and their attitude is a miracle. Emery was handed a very poor team and did wat he could only do,do you blame him for DAT stupid,poor penalty we conceded yesterday nd for Mkhiyterian (excuse da spelling) Xhaka,Mustafi,ozil for being poor did season I don’t think so.let’s face it guys Kroenke dsnt want to splash da cash so dat we can be competitive dats why we find ourselves where we are

  15. Hademe Precious

    Xhaka and. Mustafi is the reason arsenal did not make top four ….

  16. things are changing

    We need to win the EL because we need CL football. We need it for the prestige, for attracting players and for financial reward. This is independent of the need to upgrade our squad and clear out some old and some poor players.

    Hopefully Chelsea will be less keen to win the EL it now that they have qualified for CL next season.

  17. Tactically Emery, has felt obliged to resort to a defensive three centre back system due to our lack of quality in this area and the fact that we do not have adequate traditional full backs who can attack and defend.Until these inadequate players are replaced we will not improve regardless of signings further up the field.All the top quality sides in Europe play with a flat back four who maintain a high line because they have the speed and quality on the ball to do so.Until we acquire better defenders we are likely to slip down the PL as the likes of Wolves, Leicester and perhaps Everton strengthen in the close season.Bellerin,Holding and Mavroponas are the only outfield defenders I would retain as a major clear out is essential if we are to progress.Emery has a very challenging season ahead of him, but I wish him well.

    1. Spot on Grandad. I think Emery wants to play a back four but the injuries to Bellerin and Holding along with the lack of LB options scuppered that. Next year Holding and Bellerin are back. Whatever the transfer kitty is, I hope we spend 90% of it on a quality left back and a quality CB to pair with Holding. Those are our two biggest needs.

    2. 👍Agreed Granddad; as well as the clubs you mention, Watford and others, such as the promoted teams will invest in their squads because of the money in the EPL, the ramifications of demotion and the difficulty of regaining promotion from the Championship.

  18. If is our only realistic target, we do not have a Top 4 in UK past years nor anymore l Lucky EL now offers CL for winner… In term of team, we behind every tesm above us today, Man U messed up but better team indivuality. When look at Everton, Cristal palace or lecesiter and Brighton,wich are our last games, shows where we are and heading next season… We will for EL football next year with teams as Everton progress, we may have to fight for 7 th,. Spurs keep their team and spending 120 millions in transfer window.

  19. Let’s face it, we knew this team would struggle and Emery was always going to need a settling in period. We shouldn’t be too harsh on him because he has had to find out what works and who it works with? I said I would give him a season and a good transfer window. I want to see what happens this summer and next year..

    As for the result yesterday? I never expected this team to win but, I did expect a good performance. Well, we all know where this leads again. I’m not going to into a rant again. It’s pointless. But I will say it’s the same players who have let the club and supporters down. Brainless decision making has cost us dear this season and it has to change!

    The cracks are far too many and too deep that the wall just needs to be rebuilt!

  20. Welbeck is leaving! I have waited a long time for this. Heart of a lion but football ability of Bambi on ice IMO.

    We should beat Valencia to reach the final but the 2nd leg will no doubt be a very nervy night.

    Worried if we meet Chelsea which we probably will they will be more relaxed as they would have secured 4th spot and therefore may play with more freedom.

    Still, hopefully we will be in it to win it.

    Lots of work to do for next season and without proper investment (which will no doubt be the case) we will struggle again next year.

  21. Fine. Paper it over, put some gum on it to keep it in place and then throw some paint on it for some good measure to disguise it. Anything to let us end the season on a high and look forward to cl football next season

  22. ken1945, I answered your post on a previous item asking for comment from me. I also commented on the actual Brighton game, but due to the time difference you had obviously moved on. Regards.

  23. on the evidence available for arsenal’s campaign 2018/19 we got what we deserved – imo

    are we going to beat chelski – when they seal their spot in the europa league? who knows…

    ..but with the jekyl and hyde approach we have to the game of footbal it would be amazing

    if we have anything “new” left in the locker to make up for all the disappointment we all are

    feeling right now. Whether we deserve a trophy for all our displays in europa is one for debate.

  24. Four of the team were brought in by Emery (Leno, Sokratis, Lichtsteiner and Torriera), another two have been with Emery longer than Wenger (Aubameyang and Mkhitaryan). The team look like they don’t know what they are doing at times. We had 40 crosses yesterday and 16 corners, playing into the hands ( or heads) of Brighton’s giant defenders. Their forwards got in behind us from the flanks so many times it was embarrassing. If not for Leno and a dive to win a penalty we could easily have lost by 5 goals. Xhaka was total pants as usual and gave away a stupid penalty. We are a complete shambles and Emery is a fraud. Win Europa League! Are you having a laugh?

  25. OT:

    EFC and AFC do need to talk ..they could really do with danny and we could do with idrissa gueye.

    Regardless of the europa finals we need to show the door to a lot of squad and first team players.

  26. Do you realize that you’re contradicting yourself,the questionable tactics are due to the fact he hasn,t got the players he needs to play his different formations,are you telling me his sevilla teams were shit?they were a mix of physicality and technique,only a few days ago he said he would bring physical players,be fair and give him time,support him then we will be able to judge on his team,even with no resources we have improved thst you can,t deny it!

  27. Our foremost problem is coaching and management not the owner. How were Chelsea able to get above 50m for hot head Diego Coaster, 40m for Matic, 30m for Lukaku (to Everton), Coutoirs (1 year left in his contract), keep Hazard till today?
    How were Liverpool able to get 70m for Suarez (after we bid 40m +1), get 140m from Coutinho and invest in Van Dyke and Allison?
    How were Spurs able to nurture some academy player + cheap buys (Ericksen, Son, Alli, Wayama, etc), not sign anyone last summer and still make CL semis plus top 4?
    Now to Arsenal, how did we not sell Sanchez and Ozil for huge sums and replace them with same fun when they were refusing to extend their contracts? How did we loose Wilshere, Welbeck, Ramsey, Sanchez, Debuchy for nothing while Elneny, Jenkinson remained? How did we get pee nuts for Couqulin, Gabriel, Perez, Campbell etc? How did we sign Xhaka, Mustafi for 35m each? How did we sign Perez and Sokratis for 17/18m?
    The answer is entirely coach/management! Ivan Gazidis/Wenger/Emery/Raul are responsible!

  28. Whatever in life you own, if is classed as an asset, property, a vehicle or anything of real value, you need to look after it financially. Let a house cruimble for want of attention, leaking windows or roof or let your car run out of oil and refuse to change the tyres and you are heading for disaster. So it is with Arsenal. Ultimately everything comes down to does the owner care for the asset or does he not. He cares for the value to him presumably, as an asset, even though only as collateral or eventual sale value(WE WISH!!!). So then, as he is clearly spending no real money to maintain, let alone increase its value , he is either stupid – and multi billionaires though almost always corrupt, are not financially stupid – so then, sooner or later, the reality of the vastly increasing gap between our club and our top rivals will enter even Kroenkes sinister brain. What can WE all do to hasten this process though? Deep down we know the answer, which is to boycott as far as humanly possible anything that puts money in the creatures pocket. That means staying away, not buying merchandise and calling LOUDLY AND LONGLY for him to go. On all public platforms. ALSO LETTERS TO SKY AND BT SPORTS BY THE TENS OF THOUSANDS. DEMOS AND BANNERS BUT ABOVE ALL, STAYING AWAY IN DROVES. As an older fan who has lived a long life , I well know the power of concerted action, but first there has to be the determination and will to see it through . It would be supreme irony if we failed to show any more effort in our task than many of the players and the owner who have so damningly failed to turn up when the chips were down. Nothing I say here is remotely new or revolutionary, but sometimes in life it helps enormously to spell out in large letters, both actually and figuratively speaking, what the task in front actually entails. More letters in this vein will help to stir us all into the necessary action to rid our club of the dreadful creature damaging it! Remember, we ARE the club and also its ultimate guardians! Any big club without fans , long term, is effectively dead already. And any owner refusing to maintain it is actively killing it! Stop the murder by attacking the would be murderer first.

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