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Should Fans Be Making Decisions for Football Clubs?

Should Fans Be Making Decisions for Football Clubs?

By Bootoomee

Untold is my default and most frequented football blog. I have a tab on my browser permanently dedicated to this site. But I also like to visit TeamTalk.com because of the format of the site. It is a neutral site (in my opinion) that houses all the clubs in Britain. Perhaps the greatest draw of TT is their Your Say pages. Every team has a Your Say page and there is a general one for all teams. I don’t visit this site for new information; they never break any news. All they do is basically parrot the rumours being spread by the other media and report actual news as broken, again, by the other media.

You can, however, get a good feel of fans perspectives on stories because of the comments section. Their neutrality brings in assorted fans but sadly for Arsenal, they are mostly our negative brigade.

One of their top stories presently is on the rumoured £85 million Real Mad bid for Bale. Before those who have seen me moan against transfer speculation starts calling me a hypocrite, please this piece is not about the speculation on Bale’s future. It is based on a hypothetical question that I posted on the Tottenham Your Say page about what to do with the rumoured £85 million if the deal ever gets made. See my suggestion below:

bootoomee77 (Arsenal): Here is a silly thought: how about accepting the £85m and getting work started on your new stadium? Sorry, a deluded gooner here but I kind of care about long term welfare of clubs than instant gratification that buying new players brings. Keeping Bale guarantees nothing. You had him last season in the greatest form of his life and you still came short. Arsenal got our London Colney training ground from the Anelka deal. Selling Overmars and Petit set off the Emirates construction. You can look back at your new stadium in a few years and say: that is what Bale got us! BTW, this is not a ploy to weaken you guys; I genuinely mean what I wrote here.

Now, you might be wondering, what is Bootoomee’s business in how Tottenham spend their own money? My suggestion is actually genuine as regular readers of Untold comments section would know about me. But it was also raised to see the reaction from their fans. I have always wondered if it would be wise for clubs to be run based on the opinions and desires of fans. The reactions were indeed very interesting.

It appears that my suggestion is popular. It has 24 thumbs up and 0 thumbs down at the time of writing (Tony, any hope of having such feature on this great site? And may I suggest Disqus?). That is clearly very, very popular indeed considering that I am a Gooner on Spurs’ page!

But then the written replies say a totally different thing. I have renamed the 3 commenters: Spur1, Spur2 and Spur3 respectively. You can read the comments here with their actual usernames: http://www.teamtalk.com/yoursay/comment/5149302

[NB for clarity I’ve corrected some of the spellings and grammar -Tony]

The very first response is this:

Spur 1: Tottenham Hotspur): cant you see that the sale of all those wonderful players you once had have made you a weaker club then you were 10-15 years ago. you might have a paid for stadium, but you are not winning anything anymore. arsenal doesn’t have the same appeal to players anymore. the fact you have only finished above us with 1 point 2 seasons in a row is a statement of how far your club has fallen, and how much we have climbed. i want us to keep climbing, the stadium will be build when its build.

I give this commenter loads of credit for holding a contrary opinion respectfully. Of course he is fundamentally wrong about Arsenal becoming a weaker club due to selling our players over the last “10-15 years”.    Links such as this one and this show Arsenal not being in top 10 in 2001 to being in fourth place in 2013. (Note, that second link has now been fixed).

No club has made such progress in the 12 year period provided and none of the top teams have gone eight years without a trophy. I wonder what has been propelling us forward. Maybe because we have 20,000 more fans in every home game? Chelsea have fallen beneath us despite winning more than a trophy per season on average since we last won one including Abramovich’s Holy Grail; and they were above us in 2001. Tottenham have shuttled between 15th and 11th since 2005.

This comment has 1 thumb up and 1 down at the time of writing.

There is also:

(Spur2) (Tottenham Hotspur): I know this is well intended but what are you – a fan of construction projects? Who do you really support Skanska or Arup? Seriously mate I don’t get anything like as much satisfaction at looking at the infrastructure as I do at the team and I run infrastructure projects. Football is about players, goals, games and for some clubs (though not ours – trophies!). That is what gets the pulse racing not the stadium.

Another non-abusive poster who sees no reason for infrastructure development and how it can advance the fortunes of his/her club. If only this was the prevailing sentiment when their current stadium was built; if only!

This post currently have 3 thumbs up and 2 down.

Then of course, there is the rabid poster, naturally:

(Spur3) (Tottenham Hotspur): deluded arsenal Muppet What makes you think that anyone cares what your opinion is about our club. Your on the wrong page although I admit there is sweet fa to talk about with regard to arsenal

He currently has 27 thumbs down and zero thumb up. And this is on a Spurs page!

My first conclusion from the above is that the fans who believe in long term advancement of their club (or just good manners) are less vocal on the Internet even though they are in the majority. I have to say that I find this positively surprising. Currently, 24 readers agree with my suggestion but none of them wrote a reply. Three people have written contrary opinions with 30 and 4 silent people disagreeing and 4 agreeing with them respectively!

I have joked in my Untold comments about footy fans having a new disease that I christened buy-player tourettes. The solution that most Internet fans have for any issue affecting their club is always the same most of the time: buy players! And guess what is the most overwhelmingly common suggestion on how to spend the £85 million anticipated windfall? You guess right: “splash the cash on 3 to 4 world class players”! It’s like the comments were being written by a robot! But as the reactions to my suggestion show, these are the vocal fans. The silent majority seem to think differently.

Should fans be making decisions for football clubs? My answer is a definite NO. It is not in my nature to sit on the fence! Here is my rationalization of my answer:

  1. Most fans, especially the noisy ones, are ignorant in most aspect of running a football club or any business for that matter: The trophy junkies’ clique of Arsenal fans are forever whining about the club’s refusal to spend the money that they have in reserve. Dear me, I wonder how we got the reserve in the first place? We wouldn’t have the reserve if the board had been following their idea of splashing the cash. The club spending the money as the ‘buy-buy-buy’ brigade are suggesting now will be akin to depriving yourself of luxuries to save up for a secure future and then blowing the savings on luxuries because your future looks secured. I cannot think of a more stupid path for the club to take at this point. The club’s current path is the right one.
  1. All fans want their teams to win trophies but unfortunately, there are limited numbers of trophies that can be won: Man City ended last season empty handed while Wigan won a trophy! Real Madrid have now gone for 11 years without a champions’ league trophy. You may think this is not a big deal but they won it thrice in 4 years (between 1998 and 2002) and Lius Figo had to leave Barcelona then as captain for Madrid to win the trophy. While there is no denying that splashing the cash helps to acquire trophies, there is no guarantee that it does as the highest spenders don’t always win.
  1. Fans will bankrupt their clubs to win trophies: Portsmouth won the FA cup in 2008 and now they are in league 2 (that is division 4 BTW!). I wonder how their fans are feeling right now, five years after that euphoric day at Wembley!
  1. Fans’ record of player assessment and suggestion is not great: When Arsene Wenger refused to pay Bordeaux for Chamackh’s 6 month contract, online Gooners were up in arms. Chamackh became the biggest thing because he scored some goals for Bordeaux in the ECL. Although he did well at the beginning of his Arsenal career, I think AW/board’s prudence seems wise now that his form has gone through the floor. It is ironic that it is the same online fans that are now calling him ‘deadwood’ and demanding his ejection from the club. Alex Song was derided as AW developed him into a solid midfielder but upon his departure, it was the same detractors that cried the most. Actually, a complete article could be written on how wrong fans have been when it comes to players’ assessment.
  1. Trophies or Infrastructure Development & Long Term Financial security: You can see the quote of Spur2 above again. If the footy fans of the past had a similar attitude and the clubs’ management then listened to them, we would still be watching matches in poorly maintained open fields and football will not be the great game that it is today!

Football fans are just that: fans and nothing more. Football administrators may be great or mediocre but the running of football teams should be left to them as they usually have some training, experience and pedigree in the field.

There are times when I feel like I have better ideas than George Osborne on how to manage the British economy (and maybe I do) but I have neither the training, nor the experience or pedigree in macro-economics that is required to do his job.

Fans need to calm down and support their clubs because that is all they can really do. Bitching and moaning about the players that should be signed, which is the favourite pastime of most online fans, is ridiculous because all it does is cause aggravations to the proponents when their wishes fail to materialise; usually because those in charge have different ideas to begin with.

I am extremely grateful that Arsenal fans are not making decisions for my darling club or we might still be stuck at Highbury while still not winning a trophy for 8 years, even with different managers after sacking AW along the way. I know that this last bit never crossed the mind of the trophy junkies but it is a very, very possible scenario.

Isn’t it?

Finally, let’s all keep the faith, continue to fully support our team and hope for the best in the 2013/14 season.

Recent posts

 

The sites from the same team…

110 comments to Should Fans Be Making Decisions for Football Clubs?

  • franswer

    Fans don’t make any decisions for Clubs, be corrected bwana writer, results influence clubs’ decisions. Now, for clubs like Arsenal FC that don’t consider results to influence their decision but how much money they make from the sale of players, it is sad.

  • byron

    You are obviously a very balanced and articulate person and I appreciate the post.

    Spurs fans seem to be more logical than ours in that they see a need for some long term investment.

    Where I battle with the posters on this site is in there over the top support of financial stability over success on the field.

    I have no doubt that we are in a very strong financial position thanks to the forward thinking of Wenger and the board and they deserve major credit for that. We will be in an even better position if we don’t spend our budget on players. I imagine if there were awards for fans of the most succesful financially run club we would compete each and every year!

    So we conclude we are successful off the field and that is great but should that mean that there is no accountability if we don’t achieve on the filed? We can now compete financially with anyone apparently, so now we must start reaping what we sowed for these last 8 years or there must be accountability for failure to compete on the field.

    I dont care if we dont sign anybody but now that we have capacity to compete if we dont there must be accountability!

  • Greg

    Hi,

    As one of the spurs fans who doesnt spend most of my time hating Arsenal I’m always interested in peoples views.

    I think oddly Arsenal and Spurs both have one thing in common, they’re both pretty well run. Financially they both perform well as independant entities so I think this article could have been more easily targetted at clubs outside of north london.

    With regards to the stadium I agree that it’s needed to increase attandenace and enhance that fortnightly bank roll – some infrastructure investment to help supporters get there would be nice. But I believe that It’s about to commence construction anyway with a targetted opening date of 2016-2017. While the cost of capital certainly suggests that using some of the Bale proceeds to offset some of the cost of construction would make sense _ if there was a plan to finance it before I suspect alot of the cash may be used to either strngthen the team or go out as a dividend (it is a business after all).

    We have a “world class” training centre already so no need for investment there. My feeling is the long term finances are fairly secure at this point, but have to applaud Wenger for his financial control over recent years.

    However I think some of the other comments are correct. It does appear that Arsenal can buy a hidden gem for 5-10m but can’t attract a performer for 50m. Don’t get me wrong I think Spurs have the same issue.

    The only way to attract them is a)have champions league football b)have a reaosnable chance of a trophy c)pay them a fortune d)offer them significantly greater exposure for their brand.

    I’m not sure either part of North London can really offer that currently.

  • Matt

    A lot of your opinions maybe correct and yes at times the club will have to make a business descision that the fans will not agree with.

    It’s give and take though we have now reached a stage where we have been told the stadium has been built and significantly paid for. We have also been told now we have sponsorship deals that will allow us to compete in the transfer market.(By the CEO)Nothing has been spent to date.

    It seems like you and some over posters positively dont want us to sign new players to make the squad stronger which i find difficult to understand. Most fans are excited by the thought of a new world class player coming into the club but we are mocked for wanting this.

    At the end of the day football clubs wouldn’t excist without fans so they should definately look after teh fans interest aswell as the clubs.

  • Tsm

    Hi you posted couple of links in article about richest clubs in the world nad the 2nd link is broken, because there is and extra “)” character at the end of url.. can you please fix it ?

    apart from that its great

  • Zgooner

    Good article. The fans do lots of U-turn in short periods of time.

  • mohamed aziz

    ok fans dont make decisions but they make clubs or owners rich when they just keep on buying but get nothing in return?even a wooden trophy to cheer them up?be reasenable.i would urge the fans to return their season tickets in revenge,why is gasidis so quite after thumping his chest of how we are going to sign stars,i am sure next season they will never tell anything about spending to the fans to avoid THE SHAME

  • Brickfields Gunners

    Yes ! Most definitely yes ! But to do so they must fulfill the following criteria –
    1) Possession of a brain ( your own – you twit !)-which from the negative posters here I have very serious doubts .Most are like zombies – repeating gobbledegook ad nauseam from ‘those in the know’ like ex-players (with axes to grind), pundits , journos and ‘fans’ of other clubs !
    2) Be able to articulate fresh and new ideas in a calm and collected manner and able to back it up with research and/or
    experience .No crayon drawings or poorly made you tubes will be entertained .
    3)Able to show evidence of financial acumen ; of the numerous million dollar ( or franc /bhat /ruppee /rupiah) deals , but Zimbabwean dollars transactions are no-no !
    Spend some fucking money is not considered a brilliant idea!

    4)And… Nah ! I think I’ll stop here as everybody just dropped out!

  • tomstoned

    poor article written by an armchair supporter of a financial institution now called Arsenal,a money making machine for one happy american owner..a brand much like mcdonalds..
    still i have one question to you that should put your arguments in perspective…How do you feel about Arsenal being run like most German clubs..like Dortmund or Bayern f.ex ?

  • Bootoomee

    franswer,

    I have no idea what you are saying, so I don’t know how to respond.

    Sorry!

  • Giddy

    What next after u build the Stadium and have secured sponsors deals and even reserves are already growing into the bank account? While the idea of long term is wise and very commendable, it should not be a be all end all kind of a thing! Our players have been quoted severally yawning for serious signings yet someone still want fans to believe that the squad is ready to go honestly! Fans contribute a significantly and demand better from Wenger and the Management of AFC without still dueling on what has been going on in the past.

  • Bootoomee

    byron,

    Thanks for the compliment! Yours is an articulate and balanced comment too.

    I do think that the major grouse of Arsenal fans is the lack of trophies and not necessarily the quality of our signings. They just latch onto the latter because that is what the media and rival fans have been harping on. Solid teamwork by players who understand each other and are committed to the cause will achieve the same or better results.

    Last season, Wigan won a trophy and Man city didn’t.

    I have nothing to add.

  • Matt

    @Brickfield

    You are constantly whinging at the AAA’s and the ” Sign some players brigade” So much so you are probaly the biggest whinger on here but just whinge about different things.

  • Matt

    @ Bootoomee

    Look at it over a longer period of time in all the different leagues and your Wigan analogy will be torn to pieces.

    Typical of this site use one situation to prove fact rather than look at the bigger picture.

  • Bootoomee

    Matt,

    The fact that I don’t spend all my time whining about additions to the team does not mean that I don’t want such. I am only a fan, so my lamentations have no effect whatsoever, other than annoying others. I am just letting the men who are much more qualified than me and whose job it is to sign players, to do so as they see fit.

    Besides, the men who are running the club have my full confidence based on how far they have brought Arsenal Football Club.

  • Bootoomee

    tomstoned,

    Sorry, can’t respond to you. You’ve got to do better than that. Your comment is illogical.

  • tinalex

    This is the most measured article I have read in a while. It is based on facts and facts are stubborn. Having said this I would like to respond to Matt and byron.

    Having the money to spend does not mean you buy a loaf of bread for 100 pounds when you know its value is 1 pound. This transfer season has been awkward when it comes to valuation of players. This has been caused by the emergence of that other funded club in France. Their huge expenditures injected money in the transfer market which is being circulated around. You can think about this in terms of the Torres effect.

    When Abramovich threw 50 million pounds for the player the value of Caroll went up to 35 million pounds while that of Bent went up to 21 million pounds. After that the market died down, and VP went for 25 million pounds. In these situations clubs who do not rely on donations will be foolish to participate in the market.

    Giroud cost something like 12 million pounds and if you compare him to Higuain you will see very few differences. Higuain is by no means 4 times better than Giroud so why should Arsenal spend 35 million pounds on him? Napoli did spend that amount of money because they were a beneficiary of the injected funds in the market. By the way Napoli only won the Italia cup two years back after going for 25 years without a trophy!!!!!

    Benard is some unknown quantity playing in the Brazilian league where Santos and Denilson also play yet we are told he is worth 25 million pounds. Is he any better than Eisfield, Olson or Z? These prices quoted are not realistic so the club is better off not partaking in such markets for now until markets stabilize.

  • Bootoomee

    Giddy,

    What exactly is your point? And please kindly put it in context of the article.

    Thank you.

  • Bootoomee

    Matt (@3.24pm),

    You claim that the key to winning trophies is splashing the cash on players; I point out the fallacy in your argument with Wigan against Man city. Check and mate.

    You may not like the outcome but that is how logic works.

  • Matt

    I didn’t actually say that

    So you think spending money on good players doesn’t contribute significantly to winning trophies?

    You need medical help.

  • Bootoomee

    tinalex,

    Thank you so much!

    But isn’t fact a bitch?

    I cannot thank you enough for that line about Bernard in parallel with Santos and Denilson. Splendid!

    Please comment more. We need voices like yours to cancel out those of the outrage merchants around here.

  • Matt

    @ Tinalex

    Prices are what people are prepared to pay.

    Higuain was worth £30 million as that’s what Napoli were prepared to pay.

    If the price of the last loaf of bread is £100 you either pay it or go hungry.

  • Brickfields Gunners

    Halleluiah ! The gospel according the Brickfields Gunners.
    I’m not even going to try to top this !

    http://www.rottenecards.com/card/251281/your-life-is-proof-that-god-h

    I now lay me down to slee…zzzzzz

  • Bootoomee

    Matt (3.39pm),

    Maybe you should go back and read the article again because:

    “While there is no denying that splashing the cash helps to acquire trophies, there is no guarantee that it does as the highest spenders don’t always win.”

    is in there somewhere.

    Splashing the cash helps but it guarantees nothing.

  • Matt

    Thats’ why i said it contributes significantly rather than guarantees.

    There are no guarantees in life except for the fact you will be singing the same song on here no matter what happens.

  • henry Root

    I rather hope Wenger is a trophy junkie. that’s what we need him to be. His job is to win football matches and build a good side not become a finance director. Arsenal have other,better qualified people to do that.
    And as for the deal on Chamakh (please note the correct spellings of our players’ names,our finance director/manager has given him a ridiculous salary (like Bendtner and Park)which means we can’t unload him

  • Mandy Dodd

    off topic, but class is forever. Good luck Kenny

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/23531912

  • Bootoomee

    Greg,

    Thanks for your input. I appreciate the information about your stadium construction time schedule. My point in my suggestion and this article, however, is to see how fans are going to react to the suggestion of using the money to build instead of to buy players. The silent readers overwhlemingly agree (24 to 0) while the vocal readers disagree (3 to o).

    You wrote:

    “The only way to attract them is a)have champions league football b)have a reaosnable chance of a trophy c)pay them a fortune d)offer them significantly greater exposure for their brand.”

    I have to say that we (Arsenal) have (a) already, (b) cannot be guaranteed by anyone, although it if true we have won any in recent years. Point (d) is not necessary for teams in main European leagues, otherwise Bale will not be valued at £85m.

    The main point for attracting players is (c)! You can get any player if you are willing to pay anything!

  • Giddy

    I mean our board did well to think about long term plan of our Football club but now the priority should not be accumulating the reserves in the bank. We have lost many players including RVP, Nasri and even fabrigas simple because we cared so much on the balancesheet side of the business and ignored the trophy side. So while we keep a keen interest on the business side, our board MUST work hard now by ordering Wenger to bring in quality additions. Should we fail to improve on that, i won’t be surprised if the likes of Wilshire sign for other clubs.

  • Bootoomee

    Tony,

    Kindly help address Tsm’s point 2.28pm.

    Thanks.

  • Bootoomee

    Tsm,

    I just checked. The link works.

    Sorry Tony, never mind.

  • Tom

    There’s so much rubbish in your article , it would take an hour for a full rebuttal so lets just go ever the most glaring whoppers here. Firstly- it wasn’t the Portsmouth fans who bankrupted the club but the incompetent management . If Portsmouth fans were given a choice of winning the FA cup with even the slightest possibility of going into financial troubles and subsequent banckcruptcy, I’m pretty sure they all would’ve said no thank you. Secondly- for every anecdotal exeple of a mismanaged club like Portsmouth, there are dozens of well run clubs that strike a balance between spending and keeping themselves on firm financial footing. Thirdly- calling a large fraction of Arsenal fan base stupid for wanting to do ( spend)what Wenger and Gazidis themselves said they were going to do as soon as it became possible(it has) , is ludicrous . And finally advocating to blindly support any club (Arsenal or any other) without voicing their opinion , while paying the highest ticket prices in the land smacks of absolutism and goes against the very thing football fans ,or anybody else in a free society should be able to do.

  • Bootoomee

    mohamed aziz,

    I agree with your suggestion although I am a contented gooner. Those whose feelings are so hurt by the lack of trophies can always protest by withdrawing their support via non-attendance of matches or non-renewal of season tickets. Arsenal support is not forced on anyone, so enough of the whining from disgruntled fans on positive forums like Untold.

  • Bootoomee

    Brickfields Gunners (2.59pm),

    You sir, are mean!

    LOL

  • Bootoomee

    Henry Root,

    That was a nice burn about me writng Chamakh as “Chamackh”. You’ve shown me now.

    By the way, shouldn’t you write Henry instead of henry?

    Those who seek equity……..

  • Ben L

    Wasn’t there a club that had decisions made by the fans through an online poll or something ridiculous?

    the same club died a tragically because of the “fans” decisions.

  • Bootoomee

    Mandy Dodd,

    Thanks for the link. Wish Kenny all the best. That’s why I’m always a proud Gooner!

    Class is indeed permanent and Arsenal is pure class!

  • Dennis Brady

    No fans should not run clubs. Big successful clubs should be run by a proper executive structure with financial commercial marketing people, coaches , fitness people, DOFs and a number of others. They should all be accountable.They should NOT be run by one person who is supposed to manage the first team. There are many who love Arsenal just as much as you guys on here say you do, but have very different ideas on how this club should be run.does not make us love the club any less. I will always back the players, but I want this manager out. If you can hand on heart believe that wenger runs the club for the best, using best practice modern coaching and fitness methodology, if you think he prepares his players for each team and player the best he or his team can, if you think he gets the best out of his players, and builds teams of maximum ability for the resources he is given, go ahead and keep believing, despite the glaring evidence before you. But an increasing number believe no such thing, and that now includes much of the board, some of whom are horrified he is only after a highly controversial player he is not going to get. Old Etonians and corporate Americans will not always approve of the antics of Suarez, especially when they know he is being used as a smokescreen by a manager determined not to spend, in direct contravention of CEO orders.This has been brewing for a long time. Wenger screwed up terribly on losing cesc and nasri. The socialist wage policy does not wash with the board. I can also tell you he was taken into a room and told to agree to getting in Monreal, by people concerned about another spell in consecutive seasons with very few fit full backs. If Wenger does not strengthen this twenty strong squad, painful months await, but the club will emerge stronger, and the fans united. I look forward to much more friendly discussions when that day comes

  • Bootoomee

    Giddy,

    2006 – ECL finalists
    2007 – CC finalists
    2008 – Very close to winning EPL but for “that” unfortunate incident
    2009 – ECL Semi-finalists
    2011 – CC Finalists

    This does not look like a team that DOESN’T want to compete to me. An unlucky team that may do better with strengthening but definitely not a team that does not want to compete.

  • Bootoomee

    Matt,

    You think I need medical help for showing the illogicality of your position? Well, you need to grow up.

  • Bootoomee

    Tom,

    Provide evidence of Porthsmouth fans objecting to HR’s spending policy enroute to their FA cup victory please. As I recall, the cheered him on and loved him for it. While it is true that the fans were not in charge, the club was being run in line with the fans’ desires for top signings that were in reality out of Porthsmouth’s range. This is the point of that paragraph. Why do I feel like if Arsenal were to spend ourselves into administration for the sake of winning trophies that you will turn around and blame the management too?

    I follow Arsenal as much as anyone else and I cannot recall Gazidis or anyone else in the club management promising to spend any specific amount. Please provide verifiable quotes if I’m wrong. The position of AW, the person that decides where and how the club needs to strengthen, has always been: to pay the right price for the right players that will improve the team. The fact that he is not buying your choice of players for gazillion pounds does not make him, Gazidis or the board liars.

    If you have problem with supporting the team, please tell me what else you can do other than annoying other people with useless moans.

  • Matt

    Bootoomee

    Stuck with your head up you own arse and a very dark place it is.

  • Bootoomee

    Dennis Brady,

    Arsene Wenger is not going anywhere. And BTW, is it not a bit tyrannical on your part to want to get rid of the man just because you don’t like him despite the majority (whether you like it or not) still liking and supporting him? As I already stated in the article, I am grateful that it is not up to people like you how Arsenal is run!

    Your insinuation that “one person” (i.e. AW) runs the club is unfair and wrong. Arsene Wenger runs the football part of Arsenal FC (which unfortunately for you also include signing players) with solid support of the board. You may not like this, but you can’t making slanderous insinuations to fit your agenda.

  • John

    Arsenal had success in 1930’s, 1970-1, 1989 and 1991, with Cup wins in 1979, 1993 and 1994. In between these achievements were extended fallow periods in mid-table, with the occasional dip towards a relegation threat.

    Since 1998, we have never been lower than 4th, never out of ECL qualification, have won 2 doubles, had an invincible season as well as building a new stadium, whilst retaining financial stability, which augurs well for the long term future.

    Also, we consistently play attractive football.

    Many rational supporters of other teams, who would love to be in our place would be amazed that some of our “fans” can demand that Arsene Wenger be replaced.

  • Bootoomee

    Matt (@6.01pm)

    That is not a classy way to accept defeat, is it? Anyway, you are welcome!

  • Bootoomee

    John (@6.26pm),

    I still love you man!

  • soglorious

    Matt mate, U must be a clown! Can’t U use that 100 to buy the ingredients to make the bread yourself instead of paying such an inflated amount? Heaven knows how U manage your hard earned finances.

  • A. Stewart

    I don’t think anyone thinks fans CAN (in a general sense) or SHOULD be “making decisions” for football clubs. Fans can however have an opinion of what they think should be the best course, and are free to voice said opinion.

    However, for some, and in this case those who staunchly advocate the policies of the current manager and/or board of AFC…they seem to somehow confuse (how I don’t know) fans having an opinion with them thinking they are either able, or should definitely be making decisions for the club…And further they tend to take offense to fans that they disagree with, thinking they know better than those currently running the club.

    Is it really a big deal? If a fan thinks he knows better than Wenger or Gazidis or whatever, I just don’t get why this stuff bothers you guys so much. It’s nothing new, nothing unique to Arsenal, nothing unique to sport, and frnakly nothing unique beyond sports.

  • A. Stewart

    On more thing..it’s kind of silly to assume that the decisions of the club’s management ar automatically right, and the opposing ideas of fans are automatically wrong.

    Who here puts all their unquestionable faith in government and its decisions, regardless of not being privy to any myriad of information that government is privy to ?

    Exactly.

  • A. Stewart

    “I am only a fan, so my lamentations have no effect whatsoever, other than annoying others. I am just letting the men who are much more qualified than me and whose job it is to sign players, to do so as they see fit.”

    At Bootoomee, good for you, feel free to support in whatever way suits you individually. Others may feel the need to voice their opinions regardless of whatever effect, non-effect or inadvertent effect it may have. Others may not choose to accept everything “more qualified people” do without questioning it, as is their right.

    I just don’t understand people have a problem with fans supporting their club in whatever way suits them individually. No two people or fans are alike.

  • Bootoomee

    A. Stewart wrote:

    “If a fan thinks he knows better than Wenger or Gazidis or whatever, I just don’t get why this stuff bothers you guys so much.”

    Two reasons:

    1. They have no idea what they are talking about and are mostly just following the crowd – in the wrong direction! I suspect that you will be annoyed too if someone keeps screaming at you that 2 + 2 = 7 and wouldn’t shut up.

    2. And more importantly, they keep coming to our territory to harrass us. Tony Attwood set up Untold Arsenal to give positive Gooners an avenue to rub minds. The site’s position is clearly and boldly written on its welcome banner! I suspect that you will absolutely lose it if you move away from the innumerate noise makers (from point 1), only for them to chase you to your place of refuge with their scream of 2 + 2 = 7.

    That is why it bothers us so much!

  • Bootoomee

    A. Stewart (6.57pm),

    All well and good, except they are not sending letters of protest to the Arsenal board. They are just harrassing and irritating people on the Internet.

    Here is an idea: How about you guys come together and organise a protest to show the Arsenal board the errors of their ways BUT you leave those of us deluded folks at Untold in peace?

    What say you?

  • A. Stewart

    Also it’s kind of presumptious to say that fans opinions have no effect other than “annoying others”…

    Actually many fans like good debate even if they disagree, like to have exchanges on topics that affect the club,.
    or find comraderie in sometimes having similar thoughts, many fans don’t get annoyed simply by someone having a different “opinion” than theirs etc etc and beyond..

    The complete irony of what you are saying is you are here on an internet forum doing exactly what it is designed for, communicating and expressing thoughts, and yes those often include opinion.

  • A. Stewart

    “Two reasons:

    1. They have no idea what they are talking about and are mostly just following the crowd – in the wrong direction! I suspect that you will be annoyed too if someone keeps screaming at you that 2 + 2 = 7 and wouldn’t shut up.

    Again this is very presumptuous, maybe they do have a clue of what they are talking about maybe they don’t..and who are you to determine that someone’s opinion isn’t genuinely and solely theirs and not born out of following the crowd?..and even if it is..they can do what they want.

    “2. And more importantly, they keep coming to our territory to harrass us. Tony Attwood set up Untold Arsenal to give positive Gooners an avenue to rub minds. The site’s position is clearly and boldly written on its welcome banner! I suspect that you will absolutely lose it if you move away from the innumerate noise makers (from point 1), only for them to chase you to your place of refuge with their scream of 2 + 2 = 7. ”

    Well here you go, this is the crux of the issue..so instead of putting everything under the guise of what fans shouldn’t or should do, it simply ticks you off that there are others who don’t share your opinions about how the club is run. And you feel somewhat violated that some dare to post here (I’m pretty sure also that UA has stated they welcome differing views that are expressed respectfully).

    And no personally I wouldn’t lose it or get worked up about anything with regards to how other fans choose to support the club, I personally believe that I have no right to question how genuinely someone cares about the club, no matter what their position is on a particular issue and no matter how vociferously expressed. And to be fair, let’s not pretend that it’s only those who are uncouth with how they express things that get backlash around here, there is a sect of UA (not a majority from my observations) that labels anyone with a less than pure supporting view of how the club is being run and how the manager is doing things as AAA, no matter how respectfully their opinions are stated.

    People are people and we are all different, fellow gooners regardless of their take on the issues, are not my enemy.

    We all want the same thing, success for Arsenal, we just sometimes differ on how it should be achieved, and in some cases who should lead us there.

  • A. Stewart

    “All well and good, except they are not sending letters of protest to the Arsenal board. They are just harrassing and irritating people on the Internet.”

    Actually many gooners send letters of protest, disagreement or whatever to the club regularly. Again internet forums are specifcally designed for communication, its impossible to think that there will homogenuity of opinions especially where anonyminity comes into play, even if a specific forum has a specific slant in mind.

    “Here is an idea: How about you guys come together and organise a protest to show the Arsenal board the errors of their ways BUT you leave those of us deluded folks at Untold in peace?

    What say you?

    1) Who is “you guys”… I don’t feel a need to protest, so I’m neither interested in organizing or participating in one. I agree with many of the things the club does, and I disagree with many of the things the club does. I agree with many of the points of the so-called AAA and I agree with many of the points of the so-called AKB.

    2)I don’t know about the others who you wish to leave you in peace, I can only speak for myslef in that, Personally I love coming to Untold, just as much as I love coming to Le-Grove and all forums in between, I love feeling the pulse of the gooner world and learning things from gooners all over, I love the different and balancing opinions I get from gooners all over, and I am not threatened by those with which I disagree or who may disagree with me.

    As for the “guys” you are speaking about, well I can’t speak for them.

  • Georgaki-Pyrovolitis

    The same old trolls keep coming back and spouting the same out guff and get reminded of the same old stuff and yet they never seem to learn. They just don’t want to learn. They are just having a laugh….Giddy up and giddy go….

  • Bootoomee

    A. Stewart,

    I think you are being disingenuous and I’ll be cutting the conversation short. I am not against dissenting opinions. Actually I enjoy a good debate. But I refuse to engage in monotonous arguments about “splashing the cash on signing players” – which unfortunately, is what they are ALWAYS harping on about!

    Scroll to the beginning of the comments and see my responses to everyone who posted in clear and intelligible way. I particularly enjoy responding to those that I disagree with. I responded to you for instance.

    It is funny that you couldn’t see the irony of you complaining about me complaining about negative fans. Dude, that is my own way of supporting the team and in order for you to be consistent, you cannot complain about me. Otherwise you will be a hypocrite, who is only complaining because his side is getting their collective butts kicked.

  • Bootoomee

    A. Stewart,

    You sir, don’t “agree with many of the points of the so-called AKB”

    I call outright bullshit on you here. I know that you are trying to play the fake “only-adult-in-the-room” role here but you can’t fool me. I’ve see too much of your long winded thesis like posts to be hoodwinked.

    Try another trick.

  • Stuart

    @Tomstoned re your 3.01pm comment
    I would love to see that German model adopted, if not across the UK or Premier league, then at least at Arsenal. 50%+1 share in fan ownership and still sustainably run. This would bring no end of benefits.

  • Robl

    @Bootoomee, thank you for taking the time to write a decent and well written article and also to respond to the posters.

  • Henry Root

    The Chamakh point wasn’t the main one. The main point was that Wenger is not the Finance Director of Arsenal he runs the football side of our club and in some respects does a good job and in others an indifferent one. But it is not his job to decide on the financial limits the club has on transfers just cos he got an Economics degree about forty years ago. There are probably half of the crowd at the Emirates with educational qualifications as high as that.
    I sit on several Boards and the Finance Director tells us what the financial situation is on all of them. It is my job as a director to challenge the management where I see fit.
    There is also a presumption that people who have supported the club for over fifty years, played at a decent level, taken coaching courses and run large businesses are not competent to challenge the great Wenger or Gazidis even if they are also shareholders. They have every right to do so and a lot of the challenges would stretch both Wenger and Gazidis to answer. That is not AAA it is the action of a true supporter who sees the club being run in a way that he or she disagrees with.
    I know several old Arsenal players who love this club and Wenger frustrates the hell out of them. They are at least semi- competent to judge the omnipotent one

  • Mick

    @A.Stewart 7.15pm
    ‘We all want the same thing, success for Arsenal, we just sometimes differ on how it should be achieved, and in some cases who should lead us there.’
    Not true. There are many so called supporters who openly want us to fail, i will repeat that, want us to fail, in order to hasten the departure of its current owner, manager and BOD. They are vocal and clear on this. They will claim that it is for the longer term good of the club but they can offer no viable alternative that guarantees success other than a ‘spend some f*****g money’ type owner such as Abramovitch. What happens when all clubs have an Abramovitch, there are still only the same number of trophies to go round? The AAA, and I make no apologies for calling them that because that is what they are, are prepared to gamble the hard won stability of our great club to satisfy their misguided theories. Sorry, that is not my idea of a supporter.

  • Bootoomee

    Robl,

    Thanks! I am on holiday, so I’ve got time on my hands. Beside, I enjoy this very much:-)

  • Bootoomee

    Henry Root,

    In other words, Arsene Wenger should “spend the f**king money” or the board should sack him and bring in somebody else who wouldn’t be shy about “spending the f**king money”.

    Well, I respectfully disagree. I think AW has done a great job and continues to do such. I will not waste time repeating his achievements and how much he has moved Arsenal forward among the biggest teams in the world. I already did in the main article.

    I just find it funny that there is so much grouse against a management that has moved our team from out of top 10 to be the 4th biggest in the world over 12 years despite not winning a trophy in 8. I personally derive a huge amount of joy from this because I know that as long as we’re competing at the top, we’ll eventually win trophies and consistently too!

  • bjtgooner

    @Bootoomee

    Another well thought out article and also I like your responses to the comments. I particularly like the response you made to A Stewart: –

    ‘I know that you are trying to play the fake “only-adult-in-the-room” role here but you can’t fool me. I’ve see too much of your long winded thesis like posts to be hoodwinked.’

    I have noticed both A Stewart and rupert trying to change their image to exactly what you describe “only-adult-in-the room”. It is as they are playing a game of “good AAA & bad AAA” – where the obnoxious twits like joe and uk are playing the role of “bad AAA”.

    Anyway, good article, good responses to comments, keep them coming.

  • Peter Ag

    As a Spurs Season ticket holder for best part of 20 years I have sympathy for both the fans that want to spend to win and those that want caution. The right way is somewhere between the two. What has made the situation untenable are clubs like Real Madrid, Man City, Chelsea and the rest that have funded a bubble that will bankrupt football and drive decent supporters away. I am as frustrated as anyone that we can’t compete financially with these clubs and are therefore not going to win the league any time soon but Spurs are right to just maintain steady progress. As Arsenal fans are beginning to also experience, this also means that our better players are forever going to be poached by these clubs until we can match their spending power. The fault has to also be laid squarely at the feet of FIFA and UEFA in the corrupt money grabbing way that they are run they offer no moral leadership and trying to convince fans that they will champion fair play is laughable and hypocritical. Ask yourself how you award Qatar a Summer World Cup or have a bloated reward system like the Champions League which distorts every league if it is not based on corruption and greed. It was the Taylor report that forced on the clubs the necessity to build better stadia and treat fans like human beings and that didn’t come about because of Sky or the Champions League the change came about because of fans dying at Hillsboro, Heysel, Bradford, Birmingham etc. When the old Division 1 split to introduce the Premier League we were fed the line that this would be the only way that clubs could afford to rebuild stadia while keeping admission prices low – THAT SOUNDS LIKE A VERY SICK JOKE NOW ! Overall a thoughtful piece good luck for the season and COYS!

  • Adam

    Plus thumbs up on the article mate.

  • Dennis Brady

    Bootoomee, if as you say, we are 4th biggest in the world, maybe it is about time the manager behaved accordingly. A team at such a lofty level should surely show more ambition than we do, and not lose to the teams we do.

  • Tom

    @ Bootoomee.
    I don’t have a problem with supporting the club (trophies or not)just as I don’t care that my “useless moans”(I didn’t realize I was moaning) annoy you. I don’t equate supporting the club with blindly excepting all board decision like it were gospel, and I don’t worship at anyone’s altar, Wenger’s included. As for Portsmouth bankruptcy -make up your mind mate . On one hand you are suggesting that fans should have no say in how to run a club , as they have no professional training or grasp of complicated finances(fair enough), on the other hand you blame them for not intervening and stopping H R from spending . You can’t have it both ways. As for mine calling any one a liar for Arsenal not buying “my choice of players for gazillion pounds” that might put Arsenal into bankruptcy – I never have, perhaps you are projecting here. As for providing verifiable Wenger , Gazidis or other board members quotes on subject of spending- there’ve been so many of contradicting ones ,enough to give you a whiplash . I’m not anti Wenger or Gazidis and I don’t begrudge anyone for having different views from mine on all things Arsenal( yourself included). Why should it be acceptable to glorify Wenger for his earlier achievements and revolutionizing football in England( rightfully so) and not criticizing him for what one might perceive as obvious mistakes( selling RVP to a domestic rival or deeply flawed wage structure). If you are going to run Arsenal as a business venture first and foremost, than you have to be prepared to hear from unhappy customers if they happen not to like your product.

  • Pat

    Good article Bootoomee.

    I think you very likely could run the economy better than George Osborne, though.

  • Bootoomee

    bjtgooner,

    Thanks!

    Nothing annoys me more than intellectual midgets trying to play the site “philosophers” around here. What I have noticed is that every time A. Stewart, Rupert Cook and bob (he writes his 1st “b” as a small letter and I respect that) post comments they are mostly chiding duelling commenters BUT their positions ALWAYS magically gel with those of the AAA. I am vocal and proud AKB and I can always defend my position without resorting to silly false equivalency.

    I like your posts not just because I agree with you most of the time but because you are not shy about calling out bullshit!

  • Dennis Brady

    Tom, “gazillion” sounds like a number named after our CEO …maybe reflecting his bonus, or what he wants wenger to spend……sorry, very cheap shot!

  • Dennis Brady

    @bootoomee 6.21 ok, maybe a bit harsh, maybe he does not run every aspect of the club. But can you name me another football manager so caught up in finances, he will not spend a pot of seventy million on a squad that seriously needs strengthening in numbers and quality? Can you name me another manager so worried about the implications of FFP, or some catastrophic euro implosion, and uses such things as an excuse not to spend? Look around, such concepts are alien to football managers who only want success as a breed. The fact is, he uses FFP and world economic situations as an excuse not to buy star players, why he does so is open to debate.
    I respect wenger for what he is and more importantly, what he was, but the fact is, this league and this club have outgrown him. I am sure there is still a gifted man in there, but this was ruined when the previous board sacked dein and let wenger thrive in his own bubble, they are the true guilty party. Wenger could go and manage say Lille, nancy…but not PSG and do very well with the methods he employs, but no longer our club. By sthe end of September, the whole world will know this, even his most ardent supporters
    But for what it’s worth, hope you enjoy the games this weekend

  • Bootoomee

    Dennis Brady,

    It’s a bit of a conundrum isn’t it? A strategy got us from being a non-top10 to 4th biggest club in the world in 12 years but now that we have gotten to big, we need to jettision this strategy because we are too big for it. I understand your position, I just don’t agree with it.

    I am not against strengthening the team. I also agree that our chances to win trophies will be boosted by strengthening and I will be extremely happy for us to win trophies.

    I do have faith in Arsene Wenger and the current team and I believe that they will do well this season. So while additions will help, I trust AW to bring in the required personnel and I’ll patient till he does. Now, that’s me. Although, unless AW is blackmailing the entire board of Arsenal FC, the men on the board seem to agree with me too!

  • Bootoomee

    Dennis Brady,

    I respect you (I hope that I don’t come across as condescending) even though we disagree. You are not trying to be clever by half but just respectfully stating and defending the position that you believe in. I hope we can continue to debate our different ideas of how to move Arsenal forward.

    I can’t wait fro Sunday to come 🙂 I’ll post report of how the day goes.

  • Dennis Brady

    I am sure we can Bootoomee, hope you all have a great time, and I have a feeling you will see some good performances. Look forward to seeing how you get on!

  • Sean Spillane

    Tick…tock…tick…tock. WTF is happening at our once great club? Two weeks to the start of the season and still we haven’t bought no one. I fear an ugly atmosphere at the EC tournament and Wenger will be at the centre of the discontent and chants…for obvious reasons.

  • henry Root

    Bootoomee
    We are not going to agree. I suppose our love for the club is manifested in different ways and gives us different perspectives. You and the people on this site see the achievements of the club with the fourth highest wage bill as satisfactory when I see it as par. Wenger has been a wonderful manager but he is a shadow of that manager specially without Dein to advise and cajole him.
    The appalling parade of dross leaving the club this summer bears testimony to the waste that he has created and his dithering in the transfer market will lead to another season where we begin with limited hope even though Wenger pockets £7.5 million for overseeing very limited achievement.
    Still maybe he can find 60,000 lobotomised gooners to share in the fun.Personally I doubt it

  • Doofus

    Interesting blog.

  • Rupert Cook

    To address point one, fine but you could also argue that had we spent a bit more or even bought better players for the same money (was there really nobody out there as good as Gervinho or Santos?) we’d have won the odd trophy thereby raising our profile and earned more money and also possibly sold a lot more merchandise to young kids who decided to follow a successful team. As we can never know what the alternative would have been to the path we chose we can’t say we have made the best choice. Where we are now with supposedly heaps of cash though is a good place to be.

    Point two, yes that’s right, there are few trophies, and last year was something of an anomaly as trophies are usually shared between three clubs. But at least City won’t have to play in a CL qualifier. I hope there are more anomalous seasons, I like it when different teams win things.

    Point three, did the fans bankrupt Portsmouth? I thought that was the owners. Maybe I misunderstood your point.

    Point four, is it the exact same fans who clamour for players and then deride them when they fail? How do you know this? I can see your reasoning but it’s an assumption. I’d love you to write an article on how wrong fans are on players assessment.

    Point five, long term financial security is essential of course.

    Osborne is making a right mess of the economy so I wouldn’t be surprised if you could do a better job.

  • Dennis Brady

    The fact is, wenger could have safely spent far more money and got hold of far better players than you mention. Wenger thought cash would amount to more than it has, other clubs have found the money to blow him put of the water, including, unfortunately clubs trying to catch us who will not be selling their prize assets for twenty five million as we did , as with Suarez, wenger will find to a very heavy cost. Wenger made a calculation, the euro would implode, Spanish clubs would have to repay tax, and FFP would have an effect. How wrong can one man be, to the extent Gazidis will no longer discuss FFP. Wenger thought accumulating cash was the answer, he refused marquee signings to that end. Now , even the likes of Napoli and the Spuds, clubs with far less turnover than Arsenal are cash rich rich. Wengers caution is coming home to roost. Big players will not come near us. Answer….get on the phone to David Dein now, nobody else will wake wenger from his slumber.

  • Andrei

    @Bootoomee “A strategy got us from being a non-top10 to 4th biggest club in the world in 12 years but now that we have gotten to big, we need to jettision this strategy because we are too big for it”

    What is your from non-top 10 to 4th statement based on? If it is by revenue then according to Deloitte Arsenal were 10th in 2004/5, 6th in 2011/12 and never above 5th. If it is by market value then according to Forbes Arsenal were 3rd in 2007-11 and 4th in 2012-13. Where are you getting your numbers?

  • Bootoomee

    Andrei,

    You are just nit-picking here. The bottom line is that despite lack of trophies for 8 years, Arsenal have moved up to 5th or 4th whether by revenue or Market value respectively.

    How could a club that is headed in the wrong direction be the 5th in the world by revenue and 4th by market value when regular trophy winners are below us? Doesn’t the movement from 10th to 5th over 8 trophyless years defeat the “we are not winning trophies so we are doomed” argument? This is the crux of the matter.

    I’m giving credence to the strategy that made this possible because I believe that as long as we are competing at the top and with sound financial security, it’s only a matter of time before we start winning trophies again.

    If you have a more substantive objections please lay it out.

  • Bootoomee

    Dennis Brady,

    Thanks for the link. I have got to laugh at most of the comments though. I think “buy-player” tourettes may just be real 🙂 You will think that Arsene is a young manager fresh out of managerial school with the lectures he gets from those Internet ‘experts’. This is probably the major reason why I hope we win a trophy soon, so that the trophy junkies can quiet down about buying players.

  • Andrei

    @Boottoomee You probably need to ease down you combative spirit a bit 🙂 Nowhere in my post I stated that Arsenal were doomed or going in the wrong direction.

    However what I would like to state that the discussion should go beyond “splash the cash” cliche. The strategy may or may not have worked depending on your point of view. And even if it has the question is still valid if Arsenal should stay the course or adopt more growth oriented strategy. And if the answer is growth what is the best way for the transition.

  • Edda

    Great post Bootoomee! But I sadly have to agree With you on the fact that Our “Your Say” Page on teamtalk is flooded With negative comments. I really cannot believe it, we have had the best preseason for ages, no first 11 players have left, we have few major injuries (knock on Wood) and we are gonna host a pre-season tournament this weekend at the most beautiful and modern stadium in the country! Almost every football Club in the world look up to Arsenal, but still so many “fans” cannot do anything else than complain. Tomorrow I am gonna fly over to London (from Norway) to watch both all the matches in the Emirates Cup, something I have been looking forward to for almost 2 years now! My only concern now is that I hope i will not have to sit beside some boo-boys that are gonna ruin my trip! I wanna Cheer on Ramsey, welcome back Santi, hope to see Wilshere back to his best, and maybe get a glimpse of newboys Zelalem and Sanogo. There is more than enough talent in this Arsenal Squad to make me very exited indeed!

  • Brickfields Gunners

    Bootoomee @ 6:58 pm. Came across this ‘new math ‘you were mentioning ! It just sums up for me the posts of some people ! QED .

    Three elderly men are at the doctor’s office for a memory test.

    The doctor asks the first man, “What is three times three?”

    “274,” is his reply.

    The doctor rolls his eyes and looks up at the ceiling, and says to the second man, “It’s your turn. What is three times three?”
    “Tuesday,” replies the second man.

    The doctor shakes his head sadly, then asks the third man, “Okay, your turn. What’s three times three?”

    “Nine,” says the third man.

    “That’s great!” says the doctor. “How did you get that?”

    “Simple,” he says, “just subtract 274 from Tuesday.”

  • Brickfields Gunners

    CEOs – do they know everthing ? Just thinking aloud .

    A hypothetical situation where 20some CEOs board an airplane and are told that the flight that they are about to take is the first-ever to feature Pilotless technology:

    It is an uncrewed aircraft.

    Each one of the CEOs then told, privately, that their company’s software is running the aircraft’s automatic pilot system.

    Nineteen of the CEOs promptly leave the aircraft, each offering a different type of excuse….

    ‘One’ alone remains on board, seeming very calm indeed.

    Asked why he is so confident in this first uncrewed flight, he replies : “If it is the same software that runs my company’s IT systems, this plane won’t even take off.” !!!!!!

  • americangooner

    Hey I have a great Idea. Maybe I should nit-pick lines from the article above and serially refute the article line by line like A. Stewart does, and turn comments into a lengthy semi-article instead of risking to write an article myself and send it to untold or post a link to an article I have written elsewhere. This way no other person can refute my opinion since very few ever read a lengthy comment and I can say to myself “I am irrefutable”.

  • Jim

    Great article, You only have to spend five minutes on sites like ‘The online Gooner’ and it gets quite depressing how the vocal and not well informed mob rules.
    You wonder what sort of affiliation these people have for Arsenal as they only seem interested in bringing the club to it’s knees.
    I agree that the anti everything Arsenal are more vocal yet fewer in numbers than the real fans, though it’s frightening how negative subjects are so spun one way on these sites it makes you wonder who’s behind it all.

  • Dennis Brady

    Hearing rumours that a sulking wenger has gone into transfer lockdown mode in protest at some of the board encouraging him to spend, hence the lack of action. If this is true, we are not managed by a man with the best interests of the club at heart. This summer will prove everything about our manager. He hates having pressure put on him.

  • Bootoomee

    Andrei,

    Yes, I can be very “combative” when it comes to defending Arsenal and I am not even sorry 🙂 From your original comment, it sounded like you care more about mundane differences while ignoring the point of that particular reference. Someone else may read what you wrote and conclude that I am exaggerating or making stuff up. Beside, the question that you raised could have been answered by clicking on the links provided.

    On the 2nd paragraph of your second post: my position remains that Arsenal should continue to grow. I see no need for any transition – actally transition to what? Spending like a drunken sailor? I think we should stay the course by keeping the team that we have, strengthen at REASONABLE costs where necessary and let’s see how the season pans out.

  • Bootoomee

    americangooner,

    So you don’t like self-righteous, long-winded thesis length comments too? Me neither 🙂

  • Bootoomee

    Dennis Brady (@9.50am),

    Here is question that I keep asking and none of you guys have been able to answer: how come this man who is uncontrollable by his employers continues to get rewarded with new contracts?

    The fans don’t like Wenger because (1) he hasn’t won a trophy in 8 years and (2) he wouldn’t splash the cash to bring in world class players to win trophies.

    Gazidis doesn’t like him because he has refused to spend the money that Gazidis has made available.

    The people on the board don’t like him for the same reason.

    Yet, he is getting a new 3 year contract!

    Look it’s either you guys are wrong on all aforementioned points or AW is the master blackmailer or a great mind-altering sorcerer, you know, like Jaffar in Aladdin!

  • joe

    We need to see something I’ve not seen Arsenal do for many years and that is compete to sign players that Manchester United would want, that Manchester City would want and that Chelsea would want,” he said. “But they’re running out of time and I don’t think, at the moment, they’ve got the ability to attract those players because they haven’t won anything in such a long time. This is why Arsenal are in serious trouble right now. “I would like to see them go as far as they can to get Suarez, but they can’t just buy him and not replenish the rest of the team. I think they need a goalkeeper, two centre-halves, two full-backs – for both left-back and right-back positions – another midfielder and two strikers. “It doesn’t make sense buying Suarez for that money and not backing it up with other signings of the same stature.” Ian Wright hits the nail on the head!

  • Bootoomee

    Edda,

    Thanks! TT Arsenal your say page is just plain sad. But did you notice that buy-players is 95% of what they talk about? We have every reason to be optimistic this season with our team.

    I’ll be at the Emirates on Sunday with my people. Based on our tickets info, We’ll be going in through turnstile H East Stand. We are in upper tier, block 111. We’ll be at the turnstiles around 1 to 1.30 pm. If you want to, we can meet there for a handshake!

  • uk

    ABUS-O-METER
    1st strike from BG- @negative posters-they must posses a brain(serious doubts)/ …like zombies
    retort by tomstoned “…written by an armchair supporter…”
    response to bg by matt “…u are constantly whinging about AAA and SSPB, so much u are possibly the biggest whinger on here, u just whinge abt diff. things”…i say fairplay to u bro.
    others…
    outrage merchants(cool)/ intellectual midgets/ fake only adult in the room.. bt
    trolls…bg
    obnoxious twits…bjt
    ….all by the “positive/AKB” posters
    no reply by the “negative/AAA” big bad wolfs.

  • uk

    now for my thoughts:
    kudos to the spurs fans(esp 1&2)who replied your comments on team??? site. and to tom,rupert and A. stewart especially.
    just to make clear, i started the abuse survey, because i found out that those always complaining of abuse, seem to always start it, and definitely provide a greater volume of it. it would be nice if some of them just said “i get pissed off by contrary opinion, whether it is well put or not”. we would understand. but all the complaint seems at best hypocritical.
    l digress. the points in the article;
    trophies are limited;
    . well thats the point, isnt it? thats why teams have to compete for it, and why those who have more of it are more prestigious. of course you can buck the trend,create your own trophy and win it all you want *cough, emirates cup*cough.
    2. fans will bankrupt their clubs to win trophies eg portsmouth…
    they will also bankroll their clubs to win trophies e.g all trophy winning clubs everywhere
    3.. fans record of player assesment and suggestion not great eg chamakh..
    errrm, fans werent complaining about not getting chamakh. they were complaining about not getting a striker when we needed. most gooners didnt even rate chamakh, they accepted he was the target of the manager(supporting the managers choice), and urged him to do the deal.

  • uk

    but lets say i agreed with you, then i’d also say;
    ..leave journalism/media to the journalists/pressmen. they are trained for it
    ..leave refereeing to the refs, its their job
    ..leave football admin to FIFA/UEFA
    ..definitely leave governance to the politicians
    ..most definitely leave club admin to the administrators (like portsmouth fans)

  • uk

    now i will get those that would say “AAA, no constructive criticism” so lets construct something…
    . how to run a club/team in a financially prudent manner…
    1. make a budget… how much can you reasonably spend on squad investment?
    2. look at areas where the team needs investing, prioritize them
    3. what players can you get within that budget to meet those areas of need?
    4. prioritize them eg, so clichy needs competition, or will be. sold? dont spend 6.5 on santos, spend it on enrique @newcastle
    or you need a centre half, you want cahill,bolton want 10mil, you wanna pay 6, is 7-8 too much? if not, will you go bust if you went that high? if yes, do you have a worthy alternative, if not, is there a player you can let go of to free up enough funds for it?
    … its obviously not that simple, definitely not that hard either. thats the reason why we pay some people in the first place

  • Shakabula Gooner

    Bootoomee:
    Very great piece! Very much in the tradition of UA for intelligent and balanced views of being a football lover, club fan and looking out for the greater longterm interest of the club you heartily support. Kudos!!

    I have also read virtually all the comments until this piece is posted. Great and diverse and interesting comments they all are.

    I think the greatest short coming of being a fan is having little expertise, scant insider information and little patience but excessive passion in all of the three areas. That makes for an easily combustible situation especially when the club is not knocking down the trophies that it has as much potential as the next to do. Yet, the best advise is to calm down despite this being the very last thing a fan is inclined to do!

    This is what makes your piece great. It shows, with data and good comment, especially, in your replies to responders why calming down is best best response – more so, to Arsenal fans.

    At this time, it is quite clear that the transfer market is far from being closed. It is clear too that Wenger is astute both in rating footballers’ potential and value. Equally it is clear that Wenger had not been sitting on his hands all these years: as the Asian tour showed, there are quite a huge number of Arsenal youngsters knocking at the first team’s squad. Lastly, it is clear that financially, Arsenal is now at that position that they hadn’t been in 8years or so. So, this is the best time as any to encourage Arsenal fans to CALM DOWN!

    Somewhere there is the right mix of decisions over external and internal players to constitute the first team squad with. There is also the need to trust Wenger’s sure-footed handling of the transition into the new phase of building a much more competitive team and one that remains so over the next many years.

    However, for many fans, this is simply an anathema. I wish the fans would take a second time to read your piece and to realize that it is better to calm down to enjoy the ride, starting with this impending season…nevertheless, fans will be fans: they will prefer not to and to talk too much from a position of poor knowledge and poor information because being reactive, volatile, emotional and wrath is very much part of what being a fan is.

    Yet, a few fans may be saved the doctor’s bills from reading and heeding tour advise (smiles).

  • Bootoomee

    Shakabula Gooner,

    Another Yoruba Untolder and brother, right? I doubt any other language have “shakabula” in their vocabulary 🙂 Do you know about Soglorious?

    Thanks for your comment. It is very encouraging. We should stay the course, keep the faith, stay financially strong and robust and the trophies will come.

  • Shakabula Gooner

    Bootoomee:
    I have been masquerading as a South African gooner – a distant relative to the famed Zulu warrior until you came along. now, I’ll have to calculate the damage thing “outing” has done on this blog(smiles). The mask is necessary sometimes to avoid easy pigeonholing by those who would rather label than listen.
    I wish I know soglorious personally – I have read his comments a few times. Never guessed we would have a common source.
    You are a good read my man/woman(!).

  • Bootoomee

    Shakabula Gooner,

    It’s man! (Got to clear that up)

    Nationality and/or ethnicity shouldn’t be an issue but I understand your need for privacy. Probably as a shield against the xenophobic antagonists.

    I think as gooners though, where we come from, what we look like or how long we’ve been fans shouldn’t matter. It’s the reason why I don’t regard the length of time of people’s support in debates, except those trophy junkies from around 1998. And it is because they are irritating glory hunters.

    It’s nice to know you, my South African brother 🙂

  • Edda

    to bootoomee
    It seems that we are at the same turnstiles 🙂
    Dont know when I will be there (Depends on how the saturday night goes) 🙂 But I am seated at Block 16 Lower tier row 8 seat 511!