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The only thing we should blame Wenger for…

By Walter Broeckx

I know the title is a bit mystifying for Untold Arsenal. Has Walter lost the plot and will he start the blame game. Rest assured dear regular readers. You will understand what I mean at the end of this article. And for those who really want to blame Wenger for all what goes wrong on this planet including the crash of a plane from in the sea till the heating up of the earth you could go elsewhere. Or you could try to understand the reason why you hate Wenger that much. But if you want to comment on this article be sure it is reasoned and articulated. And I promise the least swear word or insult or abuse will be followed by a ban.

So now that is out of the way I must confess that for the first time this season I couldn’t see the match. Many months ago I had seen that one of my old favourites band hit my town this evening. As part of the Frantic Four – with the original people  Francis Rossi – Alan Lancaster – Rick Parfitt – John Coghlan they gave a concert based on the good old days. So when I booked the tickets Arsenal didn’t play a game and there was no CL football. So what could go wrong? Well Arsenal qualifying for the semi final of the FA cup. Not that this is wrong but as a result the PL put the match against Swansea to the same date. Leaving me in trouble. But as the boys from Status Quo are not getting any younger and as I was going with my brother and one of my sons I decided to go to the concert. 

So I still will have to see the match. From what I read an unlucky own goal cost us the win. A result that will lead to the usual and unusual suspects to go in to complete histery and ask the sacking of the manager and the whole team. No kidding I just blocked such a comment by the way. Really did.

Now going back to the Status Quo concert. This was an original concert from the 70ties or there about. So lots of old songs that I had almost forgotten. But it was nice to see them back alive and kicking. Be it a bit rusty for some of the old bodies. What on earth has this got to do with Arsenal and Wenger you might ask?

Well tonight I got back in a kind of time machine to the 70ties. And this brought me back to the Arsenal of the 70ties and made me think. How would the fans who were alive in the 70ties react to the season so far?

Let us take Europe. Would they have been happy to have survived against teams like Borussia Dortmund, Napoli and Marseille? I think they would have gone lyrical about it. Apart from a win in 1970 we didn’t were that impressive in Europe. Hell we even lost against Winterslag!

Let us go to the league. Would our fans be happy with the position we have now? Being then 4 points (6 points today) behind the league leaders with 7 games to go? Remember we won a title in 1971 and then we won no title till 1989. So would the fans be delighted or would they have screamed that the end of the world was near. I remember a few of the moaners lately telling how long they have been fans. Surely they must admit that being 4th in those years at this time of the season was more a delight than a complete drama.

I just checked it and between the 1971 title and the 1989 title we only have been in the top 3 in 2 other seasons.

Take the FA cup. We are in the semi finals. Is this good or is this disaster? I think this is rather good. How many times did we did this in the 70ties? I seem to remember us losing a few finals and winning 2 finals. But surely to win it or to lose the final you have to be in the final. So again this is not  bad at all.

And yet the world is falling on our heads, the end is near, sack the manager, throw the players out (including the injured ones?), sack all and everyone and tell how deluded we are at Untold.

But some of you (not the regular Untolders of course) will blame it all on Wenger.  And in a way you are right. That you feel disappointed right now is all Wenger his fault. He is to blame. Because if it wouldn’t have been for him you would have been delighted with the season.

If it wouldn’t have been for him being 4th now in the league and in the semi final of the Fa cup would be seen as one of the better seasons. Wenger has spoilt you. And us. Wenger has given us a feeling of being a big club that win things. So without Wenger we wouldn’t have had the expectations we have now. Expectations that we didn’t have in the seventies or eighties. We then would be delighted with the season so far.

So if you really want to blame Wenger then blame him for making this club in to a big club. Maybe he should have left when we started building the Emirates. We then maybe would have gone the way other clubs have that build a stadium. Maybe we would be back in the PL by now. Maybe we would be fighting against relegation.

But Wenger kept us near the top. Kept us in the top 4 each year. With no funds. No money. Fighting against teams that got financial doping unseen before. Are we grateful for that? We at Untold Arsenal are. The regulars are.

And you others? Why don’t you think back about the days that this season would have been classified as a great season. And then think at the person who is responsible for raising your expectations. So do you want to blame Wenger for making us a stable club that has managed to stay in the top 4 in each year he was here? I never will do this.

So the only thing you really can blame him for is that he brought us maybe too much success in a short period. And as a result you took if for granted. And you wanted more of the same. Despite the conditions changing completely because of the oil money.

And be grateful that we aren’t like Manchester United. For the moment even the Europa League seems very very far away and out of reach.

So want Wenger out? Want Moyes in? He might be available in a few weeks. Do you really want to take the risk?  Maybe United fans could start blaming Sir Alex Ferguson for their bad season now… after all he made them also forget that winning periods end someday and you have to accept defeat for a while. This is the circle of life. The ups and downs of a football club. How much would Manchester United fans give today for the 4th place trophy? Hell they even would maybe give an arm for the 6th place trophy….

So the only thing I blame Wenger for is that he made the short of memory people forget that winning is not as simple as it looks at times.

By the way as my sports channel didn’t give the match live I couldn’t record it. So I will have to wait on arsenal player to see it and give my judgement. I hope I can give that later today. Now off to bed with my ears still buzzing from The Quo. Back from the seventies to the year 2014…

146 comments to The only thing we should blame Wenger for…

  • Danish Gooner

    They sideways passed for 70 minutes got lucky and then arsed it up,end of story.

  • Mandy Dodd

    The aaa smell blood, so do the media. They think we might reach their holy grail, fifth place. Twitter alive with wenger out rumours.
    Fancy names to replace wenger mentioned, trouble is, these names are under contract at Dortmund, Bayern, Everton, Liverpool and athletico. Yes, managers sometimes leave mid contract, but no guarantees. If wenger were to go this summer! it is most likely Steve bould or possibly someone who they could get easily like Remi garde would step in. I think a lot of bould, but not sure he is ready for the job, is able to deal too well with the fools in the media , or would even want the job.
    The next couple of seasons are vital to stay in the top four, the money will increase hugely for those involved, and will give us at least a chance of competing with the oilers on FFP terms, should it ever be enforced. Fail to reach the CL, and the club could go into a risk averse shell. The stakes are high, if you really believe we will get pep or klopp, live out your fantasy. Yes, there may be aging mercenaries like Capello, Sven or Van Gaal available, but do we really want them? Wenger is the best man to take us into the next vital couple of years, even better than bould or garde. Not saying there are not things to put right, there clearly are, but let’s do that in the summer as FA cup winners and playing in the CL next season

  • Henry Root

    I did see the game and am also a huge fan if what Wenger has done for the club but tonight we were very flat, we didn’t press strongly enough, we played two holding midfielders against Swansea at home and one against Chelsea away. I could go on with a number if criticisms but the point is Wenger himself wouldn’t want this sort of analysis. He is a proud and ambitious man and he has taken us to another level. The problem is it isn’t as high as we might be able to go and we seem to flatline every season despite enormously strong finances.
    The what did the Romans ever do for us argument won’t wash anymore. Every good club needs to move upwards and we look unlikely to do this. I sense Wenger may feel he has taken us far as he feels he can

  • Mandy Dodd

    Apparently Kos out for a while, Ramsey has had another setback, a couple of weeks possibly…..will believe when I see… Ozil two or three weeks, Jack nowhere near. Unfortunately, Wenger can be deliberately a bit over optimistic on injury return projections, have had a nasty feeling,for a while that Ramsey out for the season.and what a loss!
    Looks like we need the squad out there tonight to see us through, going to be tough, missing a hell of a lot of creativity. Just hope OG, and BFG stay fit, we are getting down to bare bones. Very hard to legislate for this number of injuries, the club need to combat this issue by whatever means. No other rivals, including one or two with smaller squads have anything like the injuries we are experiencing

  • OMGArsenal

    There will always be blamers as the world revolves around finger pointing and whining about how bad things are, especially among AFC fanboys who are few in number but very vocal, especially on UA. Blaming others is a sign of a profound mental weakness and ineptitude because the person feels that pointing a finger is constructive and will lead to change when it is patently false. The reverse is true, in actual fact, the blamer lives in constant frustration because nobody is listening to him or her and nobody pays much attention, after awhile, to their opinions.
    Mandy’s attitude is far more constructive and progressive. Gooners like her realize that finger-pointing is fruitless, spurious and ultimately counter-productive as it leads to constant recriminations and an attitude of ¨I told you so¨ , neither of which takes us elsewhere but down.
    Wenger is a gentleman, very erudite, humble and elegant and very responsible. He knows when to assume the responsibility for success or failure and is accountable to his immediate superiors (the Board and Kroenke) and to nobody else. That said, he does care about the supporters but cannot ever accept any abuse from them, since HE is Le Boss, not them.

  • Wenger is totally to blame for arsenal’s position at the moment. He chose all the players in the squad,he is responsible for the tatics or lack of? He is the person who is supposed to motivate the players. He has to take the blame for the small unbalanced squad and also for pushing our best players to the edge so that they are out for long periods before they recover from injuries! Wenger time is up but the board are too scared to make the correct decisions.

  • Pat

    Six points behind the leaders with seven games to go. Come on Arsenal!

    I didn’t see the match either, but from what Arsene Wenger says, there was at least one dodgy refereeing decision – again. But he insists we could have still won if it were not for a mistake.

    He also points out our injury problems. We know why we have them – Walter’s detailed analysis of our injuries over the years exposes the culprits as the kick em brigade and the referees that let them off with it.

    Once again Arsenal will have to fight through these problems as we have season after season.

    The important thing is to ignore – preferably not read – the purveyors of negativity and stick by the manager and the players.

  • Mick

    Danish Gooner, your comment is just rubbish. I saw the whole game, we were in charge throughout apart from the odd Swansea flurry. How many saves did Szczesny have to make, he only touched the ball twice in the first half and not much more in the second. We were not at our best by any means, but everyone gave 100% and no proper supporter cannot ask more than that. Had we had a full squad to pick from as opposed to the depleted one currently available we may have done better these last few games. To describe our goals as ‘got lucky’ is ludicrous, whilst not mentioning the Swansea equaliser which really was lucky is just plain stupid. Both our goals were the result of well worked classic Arsenal moves, just reward for sustained Arsenal pressure. Go and moan somewhere else, Le Grove would be a good place to start.

  • bjtgooner

    Pat, good points. Lets hope some of the walking wounded get back more quickly than anticipated.

  • M.Valerio

    It’s good to come on to get a reasoned perspective – It’s a shame that the comment section is filled up of negativity after a game like this. It’s absurd! We don’t need to hear it (the negativity). From what I saw Arsenal dominated the game. It’s an almost impossible climate when every single mistake gets highlighted, where as every good thing gets overlooked. I am staying positive – I don’t care where we end up. I just want to enjoy watching Arsenal when the play – and I will enjoy the next game, and I will be supporting the team!

  • Franck

    I admire ur likeness for wenger,but to say he made Arsenal into a big club is not correct.domesticall b4 he came we had won ten league titles,2nd only to liverpool,and 6 f.a cup titles,b4 he came we had won our only continental title b4 he came.if u dont see reason to blame wenger,let me gv u a few.first of all we r nt d only team playing in d epl,how do u explain wen all of ur outfield players except jenkinson have been injured at sum point this season.johan djourou has been an arsenal player for over 9 years,he is injured most of the time.but since moving to germany no injuries.miyaich wen he first signed 4 us went on loan to feynoord playd d half season witout injuries,came home and jst cant stay fit even wen nt playing.luk a gervinho,coquelin no injuries and stil fit.alliadiare,no injuries,fabregas,d list goes on nd on.our players are not fit enof to last the entire season and its due to the kind of fitness training they undergo.against swansea today we looked flat,same as against spurs nd chelsea.its a shame.how do u explain the reason why all your outfield players have been injured this season.dont tel me its bad luck,cos its not

  • Sod Gunner

    So dissapointed for Arsene and the team tonight, a win would have done so much for confidence after Saturday. However what is worrying is that we only took 1 point against too very average teams in stoke and Swansea.
    I know we were unlucky with the og tonight but Swansea did have strong appeals for a penalty and if a ref blew up for fulltime as an Arsenal player was bearing down on goals like he did for swansea tonight I would be furious. In general the performance wasn’t good enough tonight to beat a team in relegation trouble. We have gone from fighting for the title to fighting for 4th within 4 days.

    The limistations of the squad have been really highlighted in the last few weeks and we have had more than our fair share of injuries which have added to it. It hard to fathom what is behind it. Are the club/players just over cautious with minor injuries. Remember Seaman played in the C.W.C. final in 1994 with cracked ribs and Adams heading a goal against Ipswich in the FA cup with his head all stitched up after a fall down a niteclub stairs a few days before

  • rob25

    I fail to see the connection with the arsenal of the 70s. We are one of the richest clubs in the world now (that is a credit to Wenger) but coupled with the ticket prices how can you justify the unspent transfer funds, lack of tactics, poor signings recently, selling our best players. Searching day and night but unable to find a striker better than Sanago. Too many people are frightened of change and now trot the moyes appointment as an example. But look at Liverpool they got it wrong with Daglish and Hodgeson but started again with Rogers and look far better than Arsenal at the moment. And lets be honest Everton and spurs are far closer too us in reality than we are to Chelsea or City. Its not just about trophies but seeing the team improve. I cannot think of one player at the moment that would make it into any of Wengers previous title winning teams. I suppose at least this year we no longer have to fear our best players leaving as they are no longer coveted as in the past. I know people will bring up the injuries we have had but Wenger knew this in January but still failed to act. You have to ask is he too stubborn, unable to see the problems we have or just rates the players higher than they actually are ; Giroud, Arteta etc. I really think it is time for him to go, we are at best stagnating.

  • ARSENAL 13

    Minor injuries…..tell that to Ramsey, Eduardo, Sagna, Diaby.

    Career threatening injuries. Not minor. People will find it hard to walk after what happened to Ramsey. Let alone play football. And he is one of the top tacklers in the game. So much for your stitched head….

  • Ryan Hill

    as someone else said the what the Romans did for us argument only holds up for so long. overall weve had a good season this year so it’s been very far from a disaster and only recently has it started to go south, but the problem is that we make the same mistakes now on and off the field that we’ve been making for so long and theres little sign of change.

    we aren’t entitled to win anything but we are with many thanks to arsene a huge club, with a great stadium fan base loads of money and a lot of very good players. lets not act like a club in such circumstances should be grateful to continually bottle it every year in every tournament with so many repeated mmistakes.

    what i think is a shame is that im not convinced wenger has a plan himself any more for how to reach the next level.were getting absolutely pummeled by the best teams in our league and im not sure wenger is sure why as it just happens again and again now. the same way every year we throw away top spot in our cl group complacently then have to face a harder draw and we never learn a lesson from it

    theres no need or value in hating wenger, but i really feel hes got no idea how to make us truly competitive with the top tteams. imo wengers incredible transfers were the main reasonfor jhis earlier success. players always told of how he just told them to express themselves and with such incredible squads he madethat was enough. we simply arent close to our level of even around 2007 times least of all earlier. we play worse football, we are not as controlling of games and vs top teams we usually seem to look like major underdogs. go out and express yourself isn’t enough with this team. despite the fact our team is still very good, Wilshire is not fabregas, podolski is not pires, giroud is not a bergkamp, henry or van persie etc. dont get me wrong, they dont need to be, but ultimately theyre a way short of that level. the utd team of last year was also pretty substandard by utd standards… compare back to when they had tevez, rooney, ronaldo, younger scholes etc. the difference is Ferguson is a master of getting more out of his players and knowing how and when to change things to make the best of it.

    i just am not convinced wenger could sit down now, look back over the last few years and suggest real tangible ways to get more out of this club than keep believing, have strong team spirit, express yourself etc whichare fine qqualities but evidently just not enough at the moment for us to look like an elite club again

    you dont have to be a plastic fan to want to see the club make real changes and take its foot off cruise control whencruise control isnt fulfilling the very real and massive potential this club has

  • Jamie

    Wenger has done a brilliant job in getting us through the lean years after our stadium move, but he is sadly unable to take us to the next level and make effective use of the vast cash resources he built up. This excellent article articulates it much better than I could:
    [[link cut by editors]]

  • Gord

    Thanks Walter.

    Arsenal, ignore the “news” and most of your “supporters” on the web. Keep trying, and we’ll continue to do our best to support you. I think better days are close, but even if they don’t show up, you are still my team to support.

  • Ryan Hill

    arsenal are like that super smart kid in the class who never does his homework , ends up getting respectablegrades anyway but not good enough to get to oxford uni, then wonders why he didn’t make it
    stop cruising arsenal i beg you

  • Antique Gunmen

    After nil six trashed against Chelsea, I’ve made my conclusion on our Arsenal this season. We did able to land in the title zone but didn’t yet hit requirements (balance, consistency, squad depth, and determination) to be champion. Those three humiliations harshly emphasized it. So, folks forget the title. Defend that 4th spot, and win the FA Cup. That’s the best we can do.
    Mathematically we still have a chance, but even Arsene realize that it won’t be our most concern right now. Our form are looking to reach turning point. I even felt this after defeated Spuds at WHL.

  • happymover

    A well written article, I couldn’t agree with you more. Wenger has done wonders with club considering financial restrictions. I personally hope he signs for at least the 2 years hopefully more. The war chest we are touted to have this summer, my mouth is watering at the possibilities.

    In Wenger i trust

  • RooM28

    In a morbid way, I think we needed this loss (of 2 points) to realize that there are some major problems that won’t just go away. The Saturday of infamy was not just a fluke. Now in the last 2 games, we have played the worst football I can remember in a decade (I know, I’m a noob).

    I don’t mean offensively, defensively, or technically. What really happened was that we played like we were not the Arsenal. No pride, no spark, no leadership (Scholes for all his faults is right, and I blame the Vermaelen/Captaincy/Injury debacle).

    Since Saturday, I have been a broken man. Swansea has shown me why. No light shines at the end of this tunnel. The current team (sans injuries) is a solid mid-table team incapable of any positive surprises. The injury list (containing our future Viera’s, Adams’s, and Pires’s) is breathtakingly more consistent than our form. Our future leaders (Ramsey, Wilshere) spend most of their time on a stainless steel table.

    At the risk of sounding AAAish, I feel we need some activity this summer. Clearly Arteta cannot last a full season, Flamini is too volatile, and Vermaelen I have no clue. What I want more than anything is a leader. Arsene is the most brilliant manager alive, but he needs a lieutenant. A force on the pitch so that whenever we go down, our only option isn’t to pray for halftime.

    If you ask me now what cost us our title challenge this season, it is the decision to keep an injured and displaced player as captain. We need consistency and leadership, and to be perfectly candid, I cannot find it on our roster at the moment. (If I had to choose it would be Per, except that he is both too tall and too German)

  • Arvind

    Thanks Walter. Keep going AFC. We’ll try and support you as much as we can.

  • chibyke-nija

    Its simple really…defend d 4th place trophy(back2back2back now…. A record!) Try to win the FA which will be tough based on present evidence.roll on next season replete with the transfer shennanigans. Smh

  • Persian Gunner

    This week was just like a nightmare to our season
    Unfortunately, we are now under huge pressure we can’t handle
    That is the real problem now, mental preparation
    By this 2 results, even a draw with City means 2 more points to loose ant let the Evertons close the gap and put more pressure on us for the 4th place

  • Persian Gunner

    I’m sorry, I’m just full of negativity and frustration
    Maybe my judgment is impaired now

  • So comparing to the 70’s ,

    I am assuming you would be taking down your articles on controversial awarding of WC 2022 hosting rights , because cosidering in the 70s there was not voting, there is atleast voting today.
    Because by your logic, we are spoilt by having a vote deciding where the biggest tournament in the world is held as opposed to a few bureacrats deciding.

    Before someone says , without voting it was better, pls read this ,

    After World War II, to avoid any future boycotts or controversy, FIFA began a pattern of alternation between the Americas and Europe, which continued until the 2002 FIFA World Cup. The system evolved so that the host country is now chosen in a vote by FIFA’s Executive Committee.

    A WC held in only 3 continents and

    In an odd set of circumstances, three hosts were chosen in London, England on July 6, 1966 by the FIFA Congress. Spain and West Germany, both facing each other in the running for hosting duties for the 1974 and 1982 World Cups, agreed to give one another a hosting job. Germany withdrew from the 1982 bidding process while Spain withdrew from the 1974 bidding process, essentially guaranteeing each a hosting spot. Mexico, who had won the 1970 hosting bid over Argentina just two years prior, agreed to withdraw and let Argentina take the hosting position.

    I wonder if business dealings from that period could be tracked/traced to find why such decisions were made.

    – – – –

    Not trying to belittle what Arsene has done, just trying to state this blog cannot take “time” as and when it suits its need.

  • Rupert Cook

    Or how about going back to the thirties? Is anyone alive to recall that era? Or how about the 90’s? Remember when we had a brilliant young French manager who inspired our club, played pacy strong players, had a solid back four and a commanding DM? Whatever happened to him? If anyone can locate him send him over to Arsenal.

  • Editorial note

    We have had a lot of comments of late linking to another site, saying “this can say it far more eloquently than me”. It is a variant on the old thing of just cutting and pasting someone else’s work.

    It’s not something that is done on Untold, so the comments are either cut totally, or the link is cut.

    Tony

  • AL

    Well said Walter. And I fully agree with banning anyone insulting the club, way overdue I think. These past few days I’ve been avoiding coming on here because of the amount of negativity, insults, and bile being spewed around here. There are plenty of places where they can go and do that, not here. As to the game, these things happen in football. We were unlucky, simple. I didn’t watch the game too, but from the live text Swansea probably had 3 or 4 attacks all match, and a good save from our keeper ricocheted back into our net off our player. That’s unlucky, don’t see how any level headed human being can blame anyone for that. The amount of injuries we have had couldn’t have come at a worse time, and we know why we got those, after a season of kicking. I don’t give up on this club, never. COYG!!

  • Kenneth Widmerpool

    Thanks Walter,interesting that you brought up the inter-tiles period-71-89 being much more fallow than people remember( league wise) I was only thinking about that yesterday.

    I felt that Källström looked pretty good—strong, intelligent and making a few decent tackles and wanting to go forward and speeding back when need be.I think he was what we could have done with since January, to strengthen things.I would like to see a bit more of him, and wondered if he might start again MC?

    Poldi brought another dimension to things once he came on, but was bloody stupid to start pushing people over in the box.

    But I feel sorry for the Flam, poor bastard!- a horrible accident like that and the extra shame he has to pick up now. COYF!

    Many thanks to all the thoughtful Untolders who go that extra bit further with their thoughts and observances…rather than just stating the obvious with the polemical position of an 11 year old.

    Mandy you always write such excellent posts, can we have a in-depth article one day?
    COYG!Aha and Amen

  • Gen10

    It’s always been about top four finish. we are on track. COYG.

  • Rupert Cook

    @Walter, so you’re a Status Quo fan? That explains everything, why you hate change. They haven’t changed their chord sequences in forty years.

    How about getting Uwe Rosler in? There are several Germans at the club for him to bond with and he knows how to beat City at the Etihad. Great credentials.

  • Blacksheep63

    we have 7 league games and (potentially) 2 cup games. I think it is very possible that we can win 7 of the league games and at least draw one (Everton) and that should be enough for 4th. This means beating West Ham, Newcastle, West Brom at home and Hull & Norwich away. Beat Wigan and we have a great chance of silverware. I doubt we’ll see much of Rambo but Wilshere & Özil should return and hopefully Kos.

    I was there last night and thought we looked poor and lacking in ideas. The goals we scored were excellent though. The one we conceded was a farce but it was avoidable (which is what annoyed me) it was a last season goal, conceded when we should have been shutting up the game not attacking. I also expected us to draw after Saturday as that has been the pattern after our two other heavy defeats.

    The title is gone but there’s still much to play for, keep the faith Goöners!

  • Persian Gunner

    Ok I gave myself a break and feel much better now!
    No negative comments any more!
    Common gunners, let’s win City game! 🙂

  • Florian

    I saw the highlights on TV, that ricochet was real f***ing bad luck. You see this kind of thing once in 10 years, and when the players are so tired they cannot think straight. One good night of sleep will work wonders for the tired minds and bodies. Not talking about me, whose night is just beginning, but the players that gave all they had 3 days after the debacle at the Bridge. The next match is Saturday, they know what they have to do until then. The finish is near, not a PL title, but a Top 4 and an FA Cup are within reach. Come on Gunners, you can get over this result, learn from the mistakes, and prepare for the next match. We’ll be here for you.

    On another hand, I don’t want to supply ammunition to the sewer rats, but it would be nice to see them banned, f***ing tw**s good at nothing.

  • WalterBroeckx

    I just seen the own goal. This really was very unlucky..
    When things go against you… oh well. shit happens

  • para

    One thing the team seems to do now is to play in a kind of “programmed” way. I, (and others too as seen by the teams that play us) can see exactly how to stop us.
    The players that provide that extra to change the game when it’s going wrong, by doing or trying something out, having a go, are all or mostly injured, we lack that spark now and are so predictable. Ergo we are a super team one day, and a league 2 team the next week.
    One thing i know,(at least i think so) there will be changes in summer, for they are areas that need to be fortified and the squad needs to be a little bigger.
    It is obvious that we cannot cope with the players that ManC and Chelsea have when all fit, even though we can beat them or draw, there is a wide gap, and seriously, watch how they both play, exactly like (we used to) us. So either they are better at it than us, or they have better players.

    But when we struggle against other teams, who by the way, are also trying to play like us, we also seem to struggle too. So where does the problem lie?
    Many of the problems have been highlighted on this website, “refs”, “rugby teams” ect. but now we have to step up and make another move towards being the top team, i for one cannot trust this Fair Play Ruling, until i actually see it in place and working properly.

    I just know that there is an Arsenal plan, and even if i cannot see the plan myself in it’s entirety, i know it’s there, so this means that Arsenal are aware of the problems and are working to fix them as soon as it can be done, for Arsenal want to move back to being (one of)the top clubs
    and not just hovering around them.
    With this, i end.

    The road is long, but it has got a little shorter for us, so enjoy the rest of the journey.

  • Robl

    It’s a man’s game, full of highs and lows. Without the lows the highs have no real meaning, and without the euphoria of the highs the depths of despair in loss wouldn’t feel so raw.
    If you can’t handle the emotional roller coaster go support Bayern, you should be safe for a while there.

  • Jax

    Status Quo get preference over Arsenal. Says it all really!

  • Rupert Cook

    http://ladyarse.co.uk/2014/03/video-paul-scholes-on-arsenal-and-its-not-pretty/?

    Spot on Scholes.

    And then we have Wenger talking about a game I never saw.

  • WalterBroeckx

    Jax,
    I can’t help it that the PL didn’t want to listen to me when I wrote them to put the Swansea match on a Wednesday. They completely ignored me…

    Rupert,
    I’m just a loyal guy you know. For those/that I have given a place in my heart I will remain loyal to them.
    John Lennon/Roxy Music might have been singing: I’m just a jealous guy. I sing it : I’m just a loyal guy.

  • WalterBroeckx

    And what did Scholes had to say about United?

  • @Rupert,

    Exactly the kind of thing the editorial note asked not to do, u cant blame em if u r banned now can u.

  • John Smith

    The only dodgy ref decision was Probert blowing for full time when Swansea were through on goal

    If in the impossible event of that happening to Arsenal you would all be rightly outraged

  • Jim Harbaugh

    A. Wenger Esq, is to blame for being loyal to us.

    Now that he has the money and spent some of it ever so wisely on Mesut Ozil he has a problem. The problem is that his players are lousily inconsistent. And we have no fighters…..we have many prancing ponies.

    There are no Viera’s, Adams or Keowns etc to fight fire with fire.

    Sherwood was so right about “papering over the cracks”. It was refreshing to hear the boss talk with such diginty about the dropped 2 points and that we should focus on the next game and not worry about whats in front of us in the league as the teams behind us is what should be our concern.

    I hope we scrape 4th. I hope A. Wenger Esq stays…..to win the title and ride into his Alsacian sunset.

  • Kos

    Wenger reckons we unlucky because swansea only had 2 shots on target. How many shots did we have on target? I can’t believe the dribble coming out of this mans mouth. Oh well we’ll probably scrape 4th he’ll sign his new contract and much of the same for next season. I feel I’ve been reliving this moment for the last 11 years. Groundhog Day!!!!!!

  • WalterBroeckx

    Rupert,
    so today it is Rosler who we should bring in as he can beat City.
    Why don’t we get whoever was manager of Sunderland at the time as he managed to beat Chelsea.
    And whoever has beaten them also this season…

    Lucky you are far away from the board room at Arsenal. We would change managers 6 times a season…

  • WalterBroeckx

    John Smith,
    With 4 minutes added time already passed by more than half a minute when he blew the whistle.

    But didn’t we told you he was a home referee…

  • Mick

    Kos
    I suppose you mean drivel rather than dribble, both of which you are expert on.

  • Wellington

    Losing is losing but what I noticed is that our team doesn’t have plan B if plan A isn’t working.. so unless Wenger have a plan B or C we’ll get bk to winning trophies, am not saying we’ll not lose a game if he does that but our team will be solid & we’ll be happy

  • Rupert Cook

    @Walter, Rosler was a bit of a joke but having said that he does watch the opposition and goes out to play accordingly. I only hope he doesn’t do against us what he did to City. As for Manu, I couldn’t care less what happens to them, I only know that we couldn’t even score one goal against them.

    @blacksheep63 cheers for the honest assessment of last night’s game. I’m not sure what game Wenger was at, possibly the City one. I hope so because he needs to study them closely to make sure we don’t suffer another humiliation. I think you got your maths wrong though as you seem to think there are eight league games left. You said” I think it is very possible that we can win 7 of the league games and at least draw one (Everton) and that should be enough for 4th.” We have seven and I can’t believe you think we’ll win all seven after last night’s performance. I expect we’ll lose to City but let’s not get thumped by them, please! And I can’t see us winning at Everton either. I think we need to win the other five games to ensure fourth.

  • Asif

    I think it has been a chastening experience to all die hard supporters of the club. Yes, we dared to dream that the league could be ours, but with about half of our first choice starting Xl missing, this current set of results are not totally implausible. Some may agree with Scholes but I don’t…this team is still work in progress and I am sure that things will turn for the better. The only fear that I have is Wenger not signing…if that happens then the transition from a maybe to a definitely team will take longer…but I live in hope of a better day!

    @Rupert – the last time I heard you recommending someone was Wilfred Bony as a striker but Giroud has twice as many goals and in the past you have touted about 10 different names to replace Wenger…and then you claim to be an Arsenal fan…and only appear on this site when we are not doing well? You have issues with Walter’s choice of music and his favourite band. When was the last time you were happy?

  • Rupert Cook

    Everton’s remaining fixtures:

    Fulham v Everton

    Everton v Arsenal

    Sunderland v Everton Everton v Crystal Palace

    Everton v Man Utd
    Southampton v Everton

    Everton v Man City

    Hull v Everton

    I reckon Everton will get 16 pts maximum.

    If so we’d need 11 pts from our games. We should get four wins but even if we only win three and draw three that would probably be enough. Not that hard when you see it written down.

  • Rupert Cook

    @Asif, I have never suggested ten different names to replace Arsene Wenger. Think you may have got mixed up. I don’t think I could even come up with ten and the Rosler comment was more of a joke because he knew how to beat City at home.

    Yes I wondered about Bony and thought he’d be a decent signing seeing as we weren’t going to spend a fortune on a striker. I still think he’d do a better job than Giroud especially at a club like ours. Considering he plays for a very average team he hasn’t done badly.

  • Pete

    I went last night. Swansea had one goal attempt in the first half which was a great finish although think Vermaelen should have done better. Szcz hardly touched the ball all half! We were completely in control throughout which is something positive. Clearly, we missed the likes of Ozil and Walcott. Arteta played in the box-to-box role of Ramsey/Wilshere and is not at their level in that position.

    Our weaknesses were a lack of invention, a lack of width and a lack of pace (see above re missing players). I remarked to one of my neighbours at the game that this was what the Totts must have felt like a week ago! Also a lack of confidence which is not really surprising. It was no surprise that both goals came from wide positions.

    Credit also to Swansea who defended deep and well and didn’t try to kick us (much). Thought Probert was pretty decent actually.

    The own goal was really unfortunate – but it happens. We did also get away with one a little in terms of the timing of the final whistle. But it’s nice to be on the positive end of a controversial decision for a change!

    I see it as a point gained – it was critical that we didn’t lose.

    Looking ahead it seems like we are in a fight with Everton for 4th.

    Everton’s remaining fixtures are:

    Fulham(A)
    Arsenal(H)
    Sunderland(A)
    Crystal Palace(H)
    Man Utd(H)
    Southampton(A)
    Man City(H)
    Hull(A)

    We have:

    Man City(H)
    Everton(A)
    West Ham(H)
    Hull(A)
    Newcastle(H)
    WBA(H)
    Norwich(A)

    We have a 3 goal better goal difference – which gives Everton a slight advantage if it came to it (for us to be level they would need to win 2 and us lose 1 – which implies at least a 3 goal swing).

    Nevertheless, I think we have a slightly easier run in – and just hope we get some of those missing players back PDQ.

  • WalterBroeckx

    Now come on everyone.
    Swansea is a much better team than Arsenal. They must be. After all they won something in the last 10 years or so. And isn’t that the mark of a great team compared to a poor team like Arsenal with a clueless manager.

    So they must be better and we should be happy with the point that we managed to take off them.

  • Pete

    Another point. There were a significant number of empty seats. I know it was a rearranged fixture but it is at times like this that the team really need our vocal support. On the other hand, apart from a few whistles at half time, it wasn’t too negative. Perhaps it is the lightweights who aren’t showing up?

  • WalterBroeckx

    😉

  • Mike T

    Rupert

    Everton will get more than 16 points from their remaining games. They quite simply are a very good team managed by someone who has surprised me, and indeed many others, just how well he has set up his players. They are without doubt the best team I have seen live at SB this season. And that was without agent Lukaka!(AW does have a point about loan players)

    At this stage of the season there are all sorts of factors that distort results and impact on both performances and ultimately results meaning any sort of meaningful predictions are near enough impossible to make

    The Swansea game was your opportunity to have a little to fall back on. Could it be that cruel deflection could be the defining moment in your season? Based on what I saw you should have won the game but there was something , and I don’t mean Swansea, I mean more about your players state of mind, that wasn’t quite on the money.

    Now the pressure really starts to impact and the irony is your desire/need to focus on the FA cup is one of those dammed if you do and dammed if you don’t situations

    Both yours at Everton’s games this weekend and then the week after will make or break both clubs PL season. If Everton win their game against Fulham and you don’t get something out of your game against Man City then you go to Goodison knowing that should they win they will go into 4th and with the momentum and in truth with their focus being 100% on the league.
    What did SA say about squeaky bum time?

  • andy1886

    Normally a draw in this game wouldn’t have been a terrible result – not a great one either obviously. It’s the context that makes it feel worse. Regards the ref there was one dubious decision – when he blew the final whistle with Swansea one on one with the keeper, so maybe that’s one in our favour. I think it’s a bit strong to say that AW made us a ‘big club’ – we have been for the best part of a hundred years. If you wanted to pick an era when we were in the doldrums for much of it then the 60’s would have been a better choice rather than the decade when we won our first double and first European trophy.

    Third or fourth and the FA Cup would be a decent season, it would get the trophy ‘monkey’ off our backs and perhaps lead to bigger things. This summer however is going to be crucial. Can we plug the gaps in the squad and close the gap between us and the likes of Chelsea and City? Come the start of season 14-15 we should have a pretty good idea.

  • Pete

    I have just seen the transcript of Wenger’s post match comments – which seem to have come in for some criticism. What exactly did he say that people took issue with? Seem sensible enough to me!

  • SurferX

    “Wenger has given us a feeling of being a big club that win things. So without Wenger we wouldn’t have had the expectations we have now. Expectations that we didn’t have in the seventies or eighties. We then would be delighted with the season so far.”

    Revisionist nonsense.

    Bertie Mee 66-76
    Ended a 17 year drought of major honours in 1970 with fairs Cup win.
    League & Cup double in 1971
    1972 FA Cup final (lost) against Leeds.
    1973 League runners up.
    3 barren years followed, after which he went

    Terry Neil 76-83
    Reached 3 fa cup finals
    Won FA Cup in 1979.
    Lost in final of UEFA Cup in 1980
    Sacked after failing to mount a challenge in the league during that period (highest position 3rd)

    Don Howe 83-86
    Did nothing after 2 years in the job- resigned.

    George Graham 86-95
    Won League Cup in 1987
    Lost League Cup in 1988.
    Won League in 1989.
    Won league in 1991.
    Won Cup Winners in 1994.

    Arsenal were already a successful club when Wenger came in. All the above managers went BECAUSE they could not bring the success the club was used to. Sadly, you can add AW to that list. His biggest legacy will not be the the trophies- it will be placing the club in a position that it is far stronger both financially and competitively than when he arrived. But the club has to move forward: he is a manager still locked in a 1998 football methodology when the game has changed. In football, if you stand still your going backwards- a big flaw in his managerial make-up (which is key in the reason why he has never retained the trophy).

    He has had money and resources to compete for 5 years. He has misappropriated them on poor signings, long, overpaid-contracts for players unproven, injury prone. Yet his teams show no signs of being able to fix the flaws that have consistently recurred throughout that time. Even this summer where the departure of RVP was the glaring shortage in the squad- he bought another trequartista player and repeats the mistakes of the past by playing them out wide. Time and time ago he proves an ability to solve the most basic problems- be it tactical, squad-makeup, leadership, recurring injuries, etc.

    The club was big when he got here. You can judge him however you like in the future, but, like those who came before him- evaluate him as any other manager on the competitiveness of his team. He has simply under-performed for too long.

  • HOME AND AWAY

    I am amazed at the amount of people on here who go on to give their detailed veiws of what went on in the last 2 games but start their message with -” I didnt see the match ” .
    It seems if we lose its the fault of , the refs,the fans ,the fouls,the premier league,the stats,the time , or the man in the moon and if we win it’s ” In Arsene we trust” – Its apt that Walter writes so nostalgically about the past it seems like you lot ,him,and the manager are all based there .

    God Bless Arsene he’s a decent man and has given me some of my best days in football but I hate to see him struggling and failing to adapt to the modern game.
    I hope that we get top four , win the cup and then he walks under his own steam on a positive note .
    Both the club and Arsene need something new .

  • Pete

    Walter – reminds me that the very first record I ever bought was “Just Supposin'”! Saw them in the 80s, almost saw them a year or so back (had tickets – but then realised they were for the same date as my daughter’s birthday! Schoolboy error).

    Is the new old line up a permanent thing or just for one tour? Were the old new bassist and drummer unceremoniously fired or are just sitting this one out?

  • Kenneth Widmerpool

    Surfer X, any chance of putting up the final stats of the Wenger years to so that I can compare them to the other managers, cheers!

  • Tom

    Walter
    I couldn’t agree with you more!
    Wenger is the victim of his own success and having delivered a double, the invincibles, league and FA titles ,the CL final appearance and last but not least the new stadium ,expectations have been raised ,so bringing up Arsenal’s position from some thirty years ago or more misses the point.
    The credit has been given to him by all reasonable people and even by some less reasonable as well.
    Wenger has almost single-handedly made Arsenal the fifth richest club in the world and one with the most cash in the bank and this is where the problem lies because Arsenal don’t act the part. We can all argue the exact amount available for transfers but what’s beyond any debate is that more is available to Wenger than he chooses to spend.

    Name another manager in the world you can say that about.

    So why is that exactly? Does he believe so strongly in his squad and if so , why doesn’t he rotate his squad enough to keep his key players fresh?

    Four new players were brought in for this season in the Summer TW and January TW combined and three of those came without a transfer fee. Now that may be great business if the bottom line is your only objective but if winning is your goal , then it’s another matter entirely.

    You could argue that Injuries to Walcott and Ramsey couldn’t have been anticipated so Arsen didn’t feel the need to bring any additional offensive firepower in the Summer but both those players were out before January TW and Kallstrom was the best he could do? And I’m sorry to disagree with some posters but he didn’t look very good in his debut . Kallstrom is a quality journeyman but not Arsenal level quality. He strikes a decent dead ball and is an accurate passer but is way to slow for PL standards .

    Which brings me to Swansea game. We didn’t draw because of bad luck but rather for the same reasons we usually fail to get a desired result, which is either lack of attention to important scouting details or bad execution. Wilfried Bony was always going to be a handful for our two CD because he is strong in the air and a great header of the ball so you need to limit Swansea crosses into the area . Neil Taylor had all the time in the world to deliver the perfect ball for Bony to head past Szczesny and Arteta was Arsenal’s closest player to him , some ten yards away.

    On Swansea’s second goal it was an unlucky deflection off Flamini’s leg but there was very little luck involved in Leon Britton’s surge into the box.
    Something that perhaps should’ve been dealt with before he had a chance to get goal side.

  • Menace

    It is a sad sight when Arsenal lose. I feel for Flamini. I love Wenger and I love Arsenal. I sincerely hope Wenger signs the extension contract because he has so much more to give to the Arsenal fans.

    I don’t care for all those who have more brains than Wenger after the match. They can be found in every stagnant pond. The injuries that Arsenal players sustain in the EPL are directly because the ‘police’ that officiate are turning a blind eye to the consistent kicking our players get. Last night was no exception. Cazorla was fouled (not as many times as by Chelsea) several times. He was pushed to the floor in the penalty area.

    PGMOL send a mariner followed by a probe to ensure Arsenal and their French manager are suppressed. Is it good for the English game (as it ensures no more trophies for England)?

    Wenger is in my mind way above all the idiots that have tried to undermine his success. He has and will ensure Arsenals future success as it is a project that is from his heart.

  • WalterBroeckx

    Surfer X,
    I think you missed a few points there. What was the league position in between those wins?

  • Lishman

    I would really love to see how well Chelsea would be doing if we took out Hazard, Oscar, Willian, Terry, Lampard or how about Liverpool without Suarez, Sturridge, Sterling, Gerrard and Mingolet or even Man City without Toure, Silva, Nasri, Aguero and Kompany.

    The simple truth is our injuries have started to catch up with us and don’t jump on the thin squad bandwagon after all those are the people who complained when we signed Ozil and Kallstrom because we don’t need midfielders, where of course the majority of our key injuries play.

    At the end of the season we have a good chance of getting some silverware and we should be top four comfortably what with Liverpool still to play City and Chelsea lets just get behind the team, a win against City would swing the momentum.

    P.S. We really should be enjoying Uniteds appalling season a lot more rather than moaning about our oen rather successful one.

  • Rupert Cook

    @Mike T. football’s unpredictable though which sort of makes my predictions moot but you know what I mean.

    I can’t see Everton winning every game though they could certainly win seven of them. It really goes down to what we do at Goodison and judging from our recent performances I can’t see us winning there. If we draw there we might hold them off but I’m hoping they lose to City at home and maybe lose one of their away games. I’m hoping for a miracle in Manu beating them but I can’t see that happening.

    There are other things you can’t legislate for like injuries and red cards/suspensions but we’re more likely to suffer those than Everton.

  • Menace

    @Surferx could you also add the stat that shows club value before and after each manager. It will then perhaps choke your opinion.

  • Rupert Cook

    @Tom, agree. I suspect that if we’d been languishing in 6th or 7th some of our millions would have been spent in January. It’s astounding that one average, as well as injured, player is all we could muster up.

    Where’s Diaby when you need him?

  • Menace

    The term ‘can’t legislate’ is incorrect when it comes to a game that has Laws that are clearly ignored by competent cheats.

  • WalterBroeckx

    Pete,
    It should be a one off I think. That is one of the reasons I didn’t want to miss it this time. And to be honest…they do look old 🙂 Not really a surprise of course. Bassist Alan Lancaster in particular looked old and you could see that he has been seriously sick.
    John Coghlan the oldest of them all battered his drums like he always did but I noticed no solo from him. Age catching up maybe?
    Rossi and Parfitt were energetic as usual. Singing was split up between Rossi, Parfitt and Lancaster so that all of them could take a rest at times.

    My guess is that this will be the end of Status Quo from now on after this tour. just a personal feeling. Maybe the feeling of the circle is round now. The old problems have been sold and they have enjoyed a last tour together and now can look back at 40+ years of rocking all over the world.

    Rossi has hinted at the end a while ago.

    Somehow I have the feeling that this will have been the last time that the Quo visited Antwerp…

  • andy1886

    Asif, to be fair to Rupert I have to take issue with:

    “@Rupert – the last time I heard you recommending someone was Wilfred Bony as a striker but Giroud has twice as many goals ”

    FactualLy incorrect I’m afraid. As of this morning Bony has 20 goals in all competitions and Giroud has 19 in all competitions this season. Bony also has fewer appearences to his name than OG.

    Best to check your ‘facts’ before posting I find 😉

  • SurferX

    Im sure you can look them up Walter. The key point is all the managers went when they ceased being competitive. The gap between the rich and poor is so vast that the measurement of competitiveness changes with the times. Man United were relegated in 1974- does that mean Moyes hasn’t had a bad season because he kept them up? Of course it doesn’t- this season has been a disaster for them because they have been completely uncompetitive.

    Listen, AW revolutionised the club. He changed the club from top-to-bottom, and English football with it. The style of football, the training, diets, player recruitment- all revolutionary and he reaped the benefit of being ahead of the rest for 7 wonderful years. I repeat, his legacy is that he ensured we were sitting at the big table when the money came in as football evolved, and not drifting into obscurity as so easily could of happened. I cant think of any other manager that would of repeatedly produced a transfer-surplus as we squirrelled away the money for the Emirates. He is without doubt our greatest manager.

    But the mistake you make (imho)- is judging him today on that legacy, rather than as his current performance as a manager. Whereas once he was a visionary, today a dinosaur in management terms. The same glaring flaws are obvious to all, with no resolution to them in sight. You can no longer paper over the cracks be staring misty-eyed into his past. Answer me this- what makes you optimistic think things will get better? Or do you fall into the category of believing that things will only get worse when he departs?

    Arsenal have to move forward. Out next manager could be a Don Howe or a Bruce Rioch. But equally, it could be a Herbert Chapman, a George Graham or an AW. He has stamped his name on our history- but sadly that’s where his tenure now belongs.

  • andy1886

    Lishman “P.S. We really should be enjoying Uniteds appalling season a lot more rather than moaning about our oen rather successful one.”

    I couldn’t agree more – apparantly it’s not nice to enjoy the misfortune of others, if that’s true then maybe I’m just not a very nice person!

  • Jim Harbaugh

    Dear fella Arsenalians,

    A. Wenger Esq, is to blame for being loyal to us.

    Now that he has the money and spent some of it ever so wisely on Mesut Ozil he has a problem. The problem is that his players are lousily inconsistent. And we have no fighters…..we have many prancing ponies.

    There are no Viera’s, Adams or Keowns etc to fight fire with fire.

    Sherwood was so right about “papering over the cracks”. It was refreshing to hear the boss talk with such diginty about the dropped 2 points and that we should focus on the next game and not worry about whats in front of us in the league as the teams behind us is what should be our concern.

    I hope we scrape 4th. I hope A. Wenger Esq stays…..to win the title and ride into his Alsacian sunset.

  • Rupert Cook

    @Walter, sounds a bit depressing about Status Quo. I thought they were rather dull musically but they seemed like they were always up for a laugh. I quite liked the early stuff like Ice In The Sun and Sunny Cellophane Skies.

  • Brickfields Gunners

    @ Jim Harbaugh – Hear , Hear ! I’ll drink to that !

  • MoW

    Wenger is a genius. There’s a growing section of the media who are actually blaming him for air disasters. These people must be demented. Where is their evidence!? It’s important we call these people out!

    Wenger is a genius. There’s a growing section of fans who blame him for recent bad results, and a lack of silverware. These people must be demented. How can they blame the manager? How can what happens on the pitch be his responsibility? For starters the club is skint. They don’t have any money in the bank. And Wenger simply hasn’t had enough time to instil his genius into the team. I find it pathetic that anyone can possibly blame Wenger for anything. It’s not his fault.

    Also, the last 9 years haven’t been the worst ever in the club’s history. So people shouldn’t complain. They should be grateful. If the finger should be pointed at anyone it should be pointed at refs, media and sections of the fan base. These people are responsible for all the problems. Not Wenger. He’s a genius.

  • Macduff

    Didn’t Staus Quo have to cancel their last gig as the guitarist was suffering from repetitive chord syndrome?

  • WalterBroeckx

    Nice to see that both Rupert Cook and Macduff seem to look down on Status Quo 😉

    You should come together and start your own band. I’m sure it will be even a bigger success than Status Quo….

    Well at least Status Quo brings joy to the people…as for Macduff and Rupert…. 🙂 🙂 🙂

  • mark

    Just to deal with the game itself, really it was nothing new. The game after a tonking we always play within ourselves. Vermilion being beaten in the air and us conceding with the opponent’s first shot on target is par for the course. The last minute goal was a tad unlucky, but these things happen and we’ve been pretty good at seeing these games out over the past year. Law of averages dictates you’re bound to let one in injury time at some point.

    – As a friend said yesterday in less friendly terms – genuinely cannot wait to see what these bottle jobs have in store for us at Wembley.

    – It’s genuinely painful to see a man as brilliant as Arsène like this. He’s done his moral piece for football, he’s stood up to the big bad oil men and, honestly, performed better than we could have hoped in the lean years. There were fleeting moments of brilliance, a few what-if’s. And I’m certain in years to come we’ll look back and wonder just how he did it.

    – This doesn’t mean, however, that I think he should stay. I’m starting to think it’s time. He appears to be so entrenched in the club that decisions such as spending money have become so laborious it cannot be healthy for either parties. Nothing will ever convince me that Özil was anything but a happy accident, and it’s clear we’re not learning from past mistakes (squad depth, injuries, “mental strength”, yadda yadda my God I’m boring myself just repeating this).

    – A very brief word on the Chelsea game. It’s easy to play amateur psychologist after the fact, but the whole 1,000 thing clearly got to AW’s head. Setting out the team in that fashion is tantamount to utter negligence. Let’s be clear, I utterly detest Moreno. But keep the squads the same, and flip the managers on Saturday, do you think the result would be the same? It’s a very uncomfortable conversation. Chelsea, above all, set out to do one thing and one thing only – win. Somewhere along the line we’ve lost our way between becoming the moral compass of football and a finishing school for nearly-men.

    – A final word. I would genuinely love to know if there is any other club in one of the top leagues across the world that could have led the title race for 2/3’s of the season, and then genuinely have a danger of finishing 5th.

  • Kos

    Whether Walter and band of sheep like it or not your beloved Wenger’s time is up…Finito – I for one can’t; wait till this dictator is booted out to Mars. You may say he might win the FA cup, but don’t let people tell you that’s a kick start to him building a new team. It’s not. The kick start to a better team was last summer (and I’m being so generous here because all the hazy excuses were lifted). He failed. His second wind was the January window when he was somehow at the top of the league with no striker and all he could muster with a dead squad was Kim Ahlstrom (who looked heavy footed and clunky last night). He failed. Arsene has spent the last 5 years indulging his own fantasy of usurping the big guns of the Premier League on a self-imposed budget more akin to a Championship side. What about thinking about the fans Arsene?

  • Kenneth Widmerpool

    baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

  • Macduff

    No need for the personal insults Walter. My family and friends get my joy daily. Just because I do not agree with your views on AFC does not make me any more or less of a person than you.

  • Macduff

    Or share your music taste

  • Kos

    If the club did finish outside the Champions League places, surely Arsene Wenger would go. It was suggested by one caller on the post-match phone-ins that this would be the biggest trophy of all. Certainly, a large number of Arsenal fans just want to see something different than a team who are incapable of remaining in the title race beyond spring.   I said it on Sunday and I will say it again. An FA Cup win and a top four finish would allow the manager to go out on a high. But before that, if the paucity of recent performances continues, things could turn ugly in the stadium, in spite of cup progress. If Manchester City establish a two or three goal lead on Saturday, who can predict how the fans might react? The fear is that it is going to get worse before it gets better, as the players are looking distinctly average now that the business end of the season has arrived. We’ve seen that a few times before in recent years, and it’s difficult to see it changing until there is someone different in the dugout.

  • niice article Walter, BUT you ignore one massively salient point, this isnt the 70s its a different time. A time when arsenal are a power house cash rich club but spending the money of a championship club..

    Let me start by saying I APPLAUD wengers thriftiness, I really do and so do MOST arsenal fans…. To.A.point.

    YOu say winning isnt as easy as it looks and i agree, but can you answer me this? why wenger decided to try and win the title with only one recognised striker?
    That is DELIBERATELY tying one hand behind the back of the team, everyone including you im sure walter can conceed, that not getting in a walcott stop gap and another striker in jan effectively killed our title chances then. Ozil and giroud were burning out visibly but that point, we knew rambo was out, walcott too.

    So we can blame wenger, for overplaying a small amount of players, for not trusting his squad members earlier in the season. If he had, we may still have ramsey and ozil.

    We CAN blame wenger for attempting to win the premiership with one good but not WC striker, that was his choice, he KNEW that only luck would win us the league.

    YOu simply cant refute these points walter, you can’t

    Wengers lack of preparation is what has cost us the title, and the irony is that EVErYONE predicted it, fans media bloggers, we all said we wont win the league with just giroud, its insulting or insane that wenger thought we could. .

    the only conclusion is that wenger doesnt really care about winning, i dont care about winning if it means we have to go out everyseason like city and chAVS DO AND spend gazillions, but we DIDNT NEED TO

    We needed small changes, numbers in the squad, another striker for the love of god.

    THese are simple little things that could have won us the league,

    How many more times can this collapse happen, before wenger loses the squad for good,

    He has to change now, or go

    He never even explains why he makes these decisions,

    If he said” look we have sanogo who i think is the best young striker on the planet, and park who is dynamite and i am willing to put my faith in these two” I would atleast accept that, but he doesnt, he just mentions ” we have sanogo” but still he will only play him when giroud is shot away.

    Giroud has turned from the best link up striker in the league, to the worst, all because he hasnt been afforded proper rest, because wenger has put together a squad that he doesnt trust ,,, oh and now Kozzer is injured, how many times did he rotate the back four? even in easier games, never, never never, now he is forced to play a player who hasnt played all season, basically because he hasnt played him all season.

    How many more fatigue injuries before they wise up

    THis whole season collapse was so painfully predictable

    i would like to hear arsene speaking honestly

    if he said, i dont want to compete for the league, i am happy with top 4 , and if you dont like how i run the cub im sorry thats just the way i am” I would respect that a lot more than him saying we are fighting for the league, but going with half an army

    Wengers problem , and the reason people are so angry is people feel , and see how close we are to being a world unstoppable force, and we could be that again under wenger, WITHOUT compromising wengers beliefs,

    It sjust seems the older he gets the more and more scared he is becoming of money, to the point where he is becoming negligent

    pains me to say it arsene, in a way growing up with out a father , you were like my adopted father figure, growing up supporting arsenal with you there i couldnt imagine anyone else, but you are starting to choke yourself with your own stubborness, and your team too……… Ill definatly miss you

  • mark

    Kos, agreed to a extent. The fans don’t pay to watch the books get balanced. We go to see out club try their absolute hardest to achieve something amazing. The stadium move was wondrous. But you can’t dine out on that ten years after its opening. A simple glance at the numbers over the last 5 years shows that Wenger hasn’t spent all that’s been available to him. This summer, he panic purchased a £43m player… and failed to land a striker. We’re a top flight European Champions League side and we have one striker.
    That’s should sackable offence in itself.
    How can Ivan Gazidis look at the shambles that’s going on and sanction another deal? The very fact it’s down to Wenger decide is embarrassing in itself. He said he’d decide on his future based on performance. We’re now in a situation where Everton, if they win their game in hand, will be 3 points behind us. Then we’ll likely lose to City. Then we have to play Everton. Then it’s game on. Everton are fresh, they have a game plan, they have a manager who has explosive players built into his starting 11. Barkley is an absolute monster, Lukaku is a green Drogba and Delofoeu is a dream of a winger. Not to mention players like Seamus Coleman diving in with the goals as well.
    … and on the goals. As my work pal just said to me, ‘Arsenal simply aren’t capable of scoring goals like that’. And he’s right. The explosion of power Barkley showed for his goal was Thierry like. Incredible.
    Our FA Cup chances feel in danger now. We’ve been rumbled. Teams know how to play against an Arsenal with no pace or power. Our top four chances are under threat. Because we have two very hard games coming up that are against form teams. Why isn’t Wenger blooding Gnabry? Why has he stopped blooding Sanogo?
    ‘When you go through a difficult period like that, you need a bit of experience. To put young players under massive pressure at the moment like we are… It is easier said than done.’
    As someone said on Twitter, ‘says the man who debuted Sanogo in the Champions League against the best team in Europe’…
    If we don’t make top 4 and win the FA Cup, can the manager stay on? I’d like to think not, because that’s an utter shambles. Harry Redknapp was sacked for a far lesser offence, because his Spurs side were never contending the league. If Wenger goes, it’ll be because of inaction. Failure to address his squad deficiencies over two windows, failure to address his old fashioned approach to fitness, failure to manage his starting 11 and total failure to address his embarrassingly weak approach to tactics.
    Lay it all on the table, outside of sentimentality, why would you keep him?

  • Macduff

    Kos

    I can tell you things will never get ugly inside the Emirates. While there has been an noticeable increase in people turning on each other and bickering it don’t think it will ever go too far, that’s not who we are.

    What we are feeling now is like a country in a long term recession with severe austerity measures put upon us. The country (nation) continues to grow richer, the dinosaur decision makers (board and management) get fatter and richer while we (the tax payer) get screwed (little back for increased ticket prices except to suffer humiliation).

  • Macduff

    But in the end you just start accepting it because you are powerless to do anything about it

  • WalterBroeckx

    Now I might be wrong but if I remember right Arsenal did try to land a striker last summer. But his club refused to sell him to us.

  • Kos

    The most annoying thing is just the manner in which the team are playing at the moment which is unforgivable. Where’s the passion, where’s the pride? I know they are professional footballers and mostly only play for the pay cheque, but surely they must also play for each other and the team? Something is rotten at our club at the moment and we desperately need someone on the inside to come out and spill the beans. Some of the senior players need to stand up. What would Tony Adams or Ian Wright have done? –

  • true walter, but they always said they wouldn’t sell, even despite the ( TABLOID MEDIA WORD WARNING)”derisory” 40 mil and a pound bid….

    Its irrelevant that we couldnt land suarez, in the whole world of football we could have found a solution to our striker shortage, of course we could have,, but we didnt

    now some of the blame for that needs to fall on wengers head, he knew we could never ever win with just giroud and yaya, he knew, yet was inactive , which suggests A) winning the league isnt that important to him, or B) he cant see the wood for the trees anymore

  • mark

    If you analyse the state of the club then Arsene has become a specialist in surrendering winning situations. No break us down if you can, no collective defence, no hard running, no tackling, no leadership, no true gladiators, no mental strength, not up for the fight. Players being indulged and allowed to play as they see fit. And remember once again what Fabregas said when he went to Barca. ‘At Arsenal we were allowed to do what we wanted on the field but at Barca I have had to learn about strict defensive organisation when we don’t have the ball’ And that’s the most attacking team on the planet with some of the best players in the world. Absolutely floored by our lack of organisation and character overseen by an experienced and previously successful manager. This is way Arsene’s reign ends ,not with a bang but a whimper.

  • Georgaki-Pyrovolitis

    Macduff @ 1:32 pm

    The issue of when ‘loads of money’ became available to Wenger is quite important. I gather that the new sponsorship deals kick in this coming summer. Wenger has for the first time only recently, that I know of, made reference to greater resources when he said we had to ‘make a profit of £30m per year when other teams could lose £150m’. Now, is he a liar?

  • philo

    i love Arsenal with or without Arsene Wenger.people must be careful of what they wish,very careful.
    Wenger can still go anytime will that signals the end of Arsenals so called problems.i would love to see that
    Liverpool is not better than Arsenal.they havent won anything yet and they will not win anything except qualifying for Champions League,which we have been doing anyway for the past i dont know years.People can say what they want but that will remain empty talks without facts.
    Thank God we have Untold Arsenal.we cant listen to footballers or ex footballers because despite being talented most of them, and am sorry to say that,are plain ignorant with little or no basic education.why should we worry about what Scholes or Owen says.perennial failures with the England squads
    surely Wenger will have to leave one day-pretty obvious but this sack nonsense is nausating
    With the level of injuries we have Arsene and the boys are doing a fair job.
    To the Media “please leave this great team alone”

  • Kos

    Some of us have seen the writing on the wall since 2008. I gave up my season ticket then and have rarely been to a match since, as I do not want to contribute money to the club whilst it is under the current regime. I still watch most matches either on satellite tv or live streaming because Arsenal have been in my blood since my first visit to Highbury in 1968.. It gives no joy that what myself and others predicted 6 seasons ago still continues to this day. In fact I have always wanted Wenger to prove us wrong and this year at times he almost had me fooled. Unfortunately things have predictably fallen apart and it is now a battle with Everton for 4th place. Everton away is a game which we must not lose. If we get a draw there I think we will just sneak 4th. If we finish 4th this gives us just enough clout to attract players that will help us finish 4th again…..and so it continues every f*%#ing year. As for the cup, I make Wigan favourites to go through as they have a manager who knows what tactics are. Our song for Wembley shouldn’t be “Here we go, here we go, here we go” but “Deja vu, deja vu, deja vu!!!!”

  • WalterBroeckx

    I cannot understand some of you.
    You knew it all from last august what would happen.
    I don’t remember many of you coming over here to say it at the time, but that aside.

    So you knew we wouldn’t get in the CL places this season. We would win nothing. No trophy. Nothing. So you had no hope, no expectations? Then why are you so in a state of complete meltdown?

    If I expect nothing then I cannot get disappointed. Yet you say you expected nothing and yet you are acting the opposite?

    I play on the Euromillions each week. I expect nothing. So I’m not disappointed when I win nothing. After all someone has to pay for the other lucky person that wins it….

  • Menace

    So easy to comment on Wenger but so difficult to find quality like him. It is because he is unique. There are very few who dedicate their lives to a game with such integrity. He has to win in a competition that is biased against him. The FA cup is not going to be an easy competition with PGMOL providing Gods to decide results.

    Corruption seems to be winning in every walk of life. I will go on enjoying Arsenals football, win or lose but I will stop financial involvement if Wenger departs.

    The game will have lost its beauty.

  • mark

    I think a fifth-placed finish is what the club needs, to shake the complacency out of the senior management. Understandably there is fear of the unknown when it comes to replacing the manager. Like two generations of Arsenal supporters, Arsène is all they have known and I question whether they are brave enough to challenge him over decisions. And if luck does run out, it is of Wenger’s own making. The lack of strengthening to the squad is not just the past two transfer windows, it goes back further. We are left with a decent centre-forward but one who, when he has been needed, has not made the difference in the way a Wright or Henry could. It feels odd criticising a player who has scored 19 times and he has dug us out of holes this season which is appreciated. It’s just now, when he is needed, he has not delivered consistently enough. The scuffed chance at Stamford Bridge might have changed the outcome, we’ll never know but he scuffed it. An outsider looking in might take the view that his personal indiscretions have impacted on his work. It happens but it has happened at the wrong time for Arsenal. And therein is Wenger’s problem of his own making; his choices are a youngster who has yet to score for the club or a player who he has unsuccessfully tried to sell since 2010.
     

  • Moray

    Walter, that is a terrible feat of sophistry you have just given. So, with the most expensive season tickets in Europe, and with our club one of the top 10 richest in the world, the best we can expect is our usual forced fourth place and a handful of traditionally embarrassing games where we get hammered by our supposed top 4 rivals? Our team plays with no tactical awareness, no leadership on the pitch, and no width or pace. And what is more, half of our team is injured during the second half of the season due to being overplayed. We also keep players like Diaby, Djourou, Park etc on our books for no apparent reason whatsoever. If we were a proper business, Wenger would have been out on his ear years ago.

    It is simply not good enough. Wenger may have built us into what we are 15 years ago, but does that mean we have to support him now that he is clueless and has lost the dressing room?

    Time for a change

  • Moray

    “I will go on enjoying Arsenals football, win or lose but I will stop financial involvement if Wenger departs.” You really just wrote this???

  • Daniel L

    Wenger has achieved the miraculous in ensuring the Club entered the 21st Century as a massive club, at a time of critical importance in economic terms – clearly teams that have fallen away in the past 10 years are going to find it takes decades to have a chance of competing at the very top again. I would like to mention this here before I continue. I am not a deluded anti-Wenger fan. I am a 30 year old, with a keen knowledge of the history of Arsenal and a season ticket holder since 1991

    I would like to understand if there is a point that this doesn’t count any longer? If we finish tenth? If we get relegated? I think we can all agree that there is a point that his contributions in the past are no longer taken into consideration when questioning his future. It appears that most of the frustration some readers have with this website, which I confess to have only been reading for about two years now, lies with where this point is.

    I am not advocating sacking Wenger. But I do feel that he should have some criticism directed towards him. If you do feel that he shouldn’t, I would be fascinated to know your rationale. Looking at last night in isolation, and taking into account all the obvious and completely understandable human elements involved (nervous players, low on confidence, tired after unfortunate/?? injury situations etc)

    1 Why did we appear to lose all of our concentration when we went 2-1 up, changing our approach to the game completely, from high intensity to distant

    2 Why do Arsenal players (some more than others, but as far as I can tell uniquely Arsenal players) make prima donna gestures when they lose the ball, or something doesn’t come off, often at the expense of an immediate chance to win the ball back

    3 Why do we lack any of the organisation and shape that the bigger teams we face seem to have in abundance (I am thinking particularly of Bayern Munich). When their ‘keeper has the ball, the defence run into position, as do the rest of the team, and immediately appear as a dangerous attacking unit. Two or three Arsenal defenders are often behind the keeper when he is looking to roll it out

    4 Why do we continue to attempt to score the goal that we have managed twice this season, that of a hundred intricate passes (this one is probably more understandable – just a personal frustration)

    I do not expect nothing. I expect us to challenge proportional to our strong squad of players and healthy financial footing (regardless where they came from!)

  • finsbury

    We know the malcontents want the team to come fifth and lose matches. We have seen this ‘support’. And we have not been impressed. Who would?

  • Tom

    Mark
    In your posts are those your own thoughts or are quoting someone else 🙂

  • If I expect nothing then I cannot get disappointed………………..

    Fair enough, unless you support the most expensive team in the world , why should we expect nothing?,

    when so little action could have changed so much outcome

    Oh bTW walter, most people said they could see what was going to happen after Jan, not august, it was the failure to act in jan that led most of us to “predict” the march collapse

    Wenger is a reactionary, “well our team had the best record in the last half of last season” yes it did arsene, but note the word HALF

    you need a squad you can trust to rotate to win anything other than a cup which can happen to anyone. to win the prem you need a squad you trust, so you can rotate, so you can avoid fatigue which will ruin our season. For that , you need to part with your hard earned cash, and yes arsenals cash is hard earned, so seeing it not invested properly is incredibly frustrating to see.

  • andy1886

    Walter: “Now I might be wrong but if I remember right Arsenal did try to land a striker last summer. But his club refused to sell him to us.”

    At least two that we know of. We declined to meet RM’s valuation of Higuain, he went elsewhere. It’s certainly not hindsight to suggest that if we had completed that deal we would have least had a better chance of improving on fourth as a minimum. It’s certainly one we could have afforded.

  • this again…

    if u want value for money go to a super market, this is team sport, expect them to win – yes, don’t expect them to give VFM.

  • Rupert Cook

    @Walter, I was in a band Walter and brought a bit of joy to a few and probably misery to others.

    As for Status Quo they’re not really my cup of tea but as I said I do like some of their sixties stuff.

  • Moray, sadly you have fallen at the first. We dont have the most expensive season tickets in Europe.

  • “Too many people are frightened of change”… You’re damn right, we are! As Moyes has proven at Old Trashdump, it’s NOT just any old manager who can keep it going.

    The argument is made that Arsenal WERE a big club before Wenger. Not big enough. The last 5 pre-Wenger seasons, Arsenal finished 4th, 10th, 4th, 12th, 5th. Two of those seasons, behind Tottenham. Ah but trophies! Yeah, two of those trophies came in the 10th place season.

    Ah but Graham got us a European trophy, which Wenger’s never done! Yeah, about that Cup Winners’ Cup: It meant less than the UEFA Cup/Europa League did, to the point where it doesn’t even exist anymore. Did Graham ever beat Bayern away, Milan away, Inter away, Madrid away, Dortmund away? His one time in the European Cup (there should have been another, but Heysel happened), he lost at home by 2 goals to Benfica — just like Tottenham in this season’s Europa League. Also, later on, for Leeds and Tottenham, Graham always got outmanaged by Wenger.

    Some of you want to know about unspent transfer funds. News flash: A player has to be AVAILABLE. He also has to be GOOD ENOUGH. We are The Arsenal: We do not spend 50 million on players worth 15 million, tops. The example of Liverpool was given. Liverpool spent 35 million on Andy Carroll, who proved to not be worth a plugged nickel. Liverpool recovered from this stupidity. We have NOT been that stupid.

    If you think the answer to a trophyless season is to fire the manager, bring in somebody else, and spend a boatload of money, there is a club for you. It is not Arsenal. It is Chelsea. Get lost.

  • Gunz

    @mark
    Continuous Cut-n-pasting doesn’t make you clever!

    You wrote
    “I think a fifth-placed finish is what the club needs, to shake the complacency out of the senior management. Understandably there is fear of the unknown when it comes to replacing the manager. Like two generations of Arsenal supporters…..”

    Original text from (www.aclfarsenal.co.uk/2014/03/26/swansea-a-comedy-of-errors/)
    “Perhaps a fifth-placed finish is what the club needs, to shake the complacency out of the senior management. Understandably there is fear of the unknown when it comes to replacing the manager. Like two generations of Arsenal supporters…..”

    @Walter
    Does Cut-n-pasting warrant a Red card?

  • Gunz

    @Walter, Tony,
    Does Cut-n-pasting warrant a Red card?

  • pete

    UncleMike – I like your style!

    As noted a few days ago we are at least 7 points ahead of where we were at this stage last season. There has been definite progress. And last night was only the 4th time this season we failed to secure a win from a leading position (to whoever came up with the old canard that we can’t hold on to a lead). We have still (touch wood before Saturday) only conceded 1 goal at home against the 5 of the top 7 we have played so far this season.

    As I said, definite progress. The reason we are struggling now is primarily due to injuries. The heart has been ripped out of the team. But that does not undermine the magnificent first half of the season we had.

    Again, the biggest problem we have at Arsenal is the medical department. The only thing I really hold against Wenger is his failure to sort this out – it continues to cost us big time. Of course he makes mistakes both tactically and in the transfer market – but fewer than most. And that does not offset to any significant extent his ability as a developmental coach which is as good as I have seen anywhere, ever.

    I am very, very scared as to what might happen should Wenger not renew/retire. He is, and remains, the best Arsenal manager we have had in the entire time I have been supporting the club – and I go back to Bertie Mee. None of his predecessors had to compete against the financial doping at Chelsea and Manchester City we see today.

    Finally, I am on here supporting Wenger after a disappointing result, as I was after Saturday after a disastrous result. I hardly see any of the slaggers on here after a good result.

    We need to front up and support the team for the remainder of the season.

  • I’ve been arguing these points for years. We’ve been spoilt by what AW has down for this club. We went from a dire threat of mediocrity to revolution with a man who not only completely changed the face of Arsenal FC but the Premier League itself. We suddenly became a powerhouse of pure football overnight and were the envy of all other clubs including ManU. Then…….OIL Ownership was born just as we prudently shimmy our way through the years battling with ManU for dominance whilst emigrating to a futuristic, amazing stadium….again launching a wave of envy from our rivals. The OIL distorts the league, warping it into an ugly monster, leaving us in it’s wake…..yet, this man who changed the perception of Arsenal around the world keeps us fighting amongst the top 4 every single year. No other club and no other manager could have achieved that, i’d even confidently state that Slur Alex himself wouldn’t have achieved that if he’d had the same resources.
    Alas, the Gooner fandom has been infiltrated with mindless fools with short memories and fickle attitudes, many of whom should remember that 18 year period of mediocrity quite well. In-fighting is rife, precisely for these reasons and the only positive is that the ‘Gooners’ in the ‘Fickle, Glory hunting Neanderthal’ corner, though loud, are still only a minority. We WILL win through.

  • AL

    I do think cutting and pasting from other sites without acknowledging the source warranted a ban, not sure if the rules have changed. Well spotted Gunz.

    On a different note, has anyone else noticed how the media are talking up Liverpool’s chances of winning their first title, ‘in the premiership era’s, and not in 25 years. Just find it funny that with Arsenal we’re reminded of the actual number of years, whereas with Liverpool it’s since this or that episode. Wonder why they don’t just say Arsenal haven’t won since moving to the Emirates? Or is it because that doesn’t sound bad enough?

  • Kos

    Al, I am watching the Liverpool game at present… Watch the game then you will know why the media are talking up their title chances. It reminds me of how Arsenal usedtto play

  • Pat

    Just caught up with the debate. Really enjoyed the wide variety of positive, supportive comments – it boosted me!

    Didn’t waste my time reading the negative ones. It only takes a couple of words to know which is which.

  • M.Valerio

    Arsenal have been competitive and consistent – that is all one can ask for and Arsene has given us that and fotball that is enjoyable to watch. You gotta love him! I love Arsene!

  • bjtgooner

    Walter/Tony

    I agree with Gunz – the cut & paste trolls should be Red carded – we have too many trolls attacking the site & it is time some of them were terminated (metaphorically speaking).

  • AL

    Kos,
    You missed my point, all I’m saying is you never hear the number of years they’ve gone without winning the title.25 yrs to be exact. Yet every man and his dog will tell you how many years Arsenal have gone without winning a trophy.
    Going back to your assessment of their game today, didn’t bother to watch (watching la liga action) but just saw an article on the telegraph saying there was a collective sigh of huge at the final whistle from pool fans. Hardly the way Arsenal used to despatch their opponents.

  • AL

    Collective sigh of relief…

  • Florian

    And apparently there was another sigh of relief today at the end of the match, as judging by the Eurosport commentary Sunderland gave them a run for their money. A noticeably different tone to end a match compared to the last few.

  • Persian Gunner

    We can manage this season, it is not an impossible task for us
    Even with this squad, we just need to work harder as a team, pressing in the middle and not hiding away from the game
    We have to be more brave and less heroic
    .
    We can’t kill the games like Liverpool or city with goal difference, but we can keep on fighting till the last moment for 3 points like what we did at white hart lane
    Our job is to win games with patience and hard job
    We should acknowledge that we are a new team, named as Arsenal, but not the same, not with those players, we should change the expectations, not in title hope, but in game results and tactics

  • Mandy Dodd

    Just hope soon, some result somewhere goes our way!!!!!

  • Mandy Dodd

    Liverpool were show boating when two up, got caught and then I think it was O Shea really should have scored an equaliser. Liverpool have had everything going their way, that does not always last

  • Mandy Dodd

    Pete, any thoughts on why wenger has not got to grips with injuries ….and all things medical? Could he be forced to look at and maybe change a few things as part of a new deal I wonder….ref his remarks about an injury review. Still think Walter is right to a significant degree ….some,of this is due to the kickings we take…..and the lack of protection, but I also worry that similar problems afflict the kids who have not always been near the first team, and the refs they experience. It also looks as if some players are overplayed

  • Mandy Dodd

    Walter 1.45, wenger tried to get more than one striker in the summer…some of them quite good. Also tried to get morata, then, when that failed, Kalou on loan in jan. …ok…I know….Kalou!
    I expect big changes in bringing in quality players, and behind the scenes changes this summer. Faith and patience are needed, as many have said, it could get worse before it gets better, but come May, things will look a hell of a lot better than they do now, though it may be a close run thing.
    The team have lost confidence….as well as players, may take a game or two to build that up again.
    The injury situation is as bad as I can remember, really needs to be confronted by whatever means

  • Thanks, Pete. I’d also like to address what Rob ArsenalRanter Fuller said. He’s right, we weren’t exactly playing like “a big club” from 1991-92 to 1995-96 — this is, apparently, the “our Arsenal” that the Wenger Outers want back.

    But his point about us being spoiled (or “spoilt,” if I should use the British form) is extendable to suggest that the Wenger Outers are acting as though the trophies that Arsene DID win were won by somebody else. Look, from the last trophy of 2005 onward, here’s a list of top 4 finishes:

    Manchester United 8
    Arsenal 8
    Chelsea 7
    Liverpool 4
    Manchester City 3
    Tottenham 2

    See? Even Chelsea, with all their money, couldn’t do it all 8 years. But for one more Bayern goal, they would have been up the creek in 2012-13.

    Now, if the current standings hold, the above chart will look like this:

    Arsenal 9
    Chelsea 8
    Manchester United 8
    Liverpool 5
    Manchester City 4
    Tottenham 2

    The people who say it’s all about trophies are bad enough. The ones who say we aren’t even “competing” aren’t even trying to get it. It’s like George Carlin said: “Some people are really f***in’ stupid. Then, there’s some people, they’re not stupid, they’re full of s***.”

  • Mike T

    @ Uncle Mike

    Is a stat that shows how many top 4 finishes over a period chosen at random a measure of success on the pitch?
    I am not doubting AW has done a very good job in the past . In reality I doubt that anyone, who is objective, really believes another manager would have done better.

    The situation Arsenal finds itself in isn’t unique in that a very long serving managers ability to take their club forward is being questioned and the directors faced with the decision as to do they stick with the manager that has delivered or do thy take a different course.

    I am not suggesting your situation compares that much with Man Utd as their manager made the decision and in truth no one was ever going to match SAFs achievements. I am referring to Forest and Clough who ironically managed Forest for 18 years!

  • kartik

    So many stats and analysis A) Wenger is not going anywhere because he knows exactly what ails us,how I know that he knows? Simple, its because I know what our problems are and if I know thwm then I a sure someone who spends his whole day thinking abt afc football club would know it. B) Our problems are very simple Arteta has become old,we dont have any players with speed on the flanks, our fullbacks have a horrible weak foot,sagna cant do shit with his left foot and gibbs cant do anything with his right. Giroud is a hold up kind of striker who is effective in and around the box yet he ends up picking the ball around the halfway line because we dont hoof it up to him and with him picking the ball at half line none of our players are fast enough to run ahead for him to pass to and hence the sideways passing commences we have no player who can beat a player 1v1 consistently our striker is not clinical even though I am a fan of giroud, we have great no 10s but not viera type player.Our only real strength this year has been our 2 CBs who are mature and strong as opposed to our fullbacks who aren’t great and our CDMs who are crap replace arteta, convert sagna to a reserve CB buy a quality RB and 1 player with good speed on the left flank and play podolski more often as 2nd striker from the bench or at the start. Thats enough we wi win trophies with that guaraneed

  • Pete

    Mandy,

    To repeat various of my rantings on this subject – over several years now(!) – reasons could include:

    – Lack of protection from referees
    – Smaller, less strong, players than previous
    – Style of play inviting late tackles
    – Departure of previous doctor and physio around 2006/7 ish.
    – Possibly poorer medical care, possibly related? E.g. players breaking down while attempting to come back.
    – Move to new stadium in 2006 with artificial fibres in grass so less give (you never see divots at the Ems)
    – Poor conditioning in terms of injury prevention (i.e. build up muscles around joints, core fitness etc).
    – Overtraining – Arsenal players are fitter than most (ref goals for/against in last 15 minutes of games) but fine line between fitness/over-fitness/breakdown.
    – Smaller squad size leading to increased burden on players, more injuries and thus a vicious circle. This may relate to clusters of injuries in certain positions (e.g. midfielders now, full backs previously).

    Hard for a layman like me to know the significance, if any, of each of these factors but they should all be investigated.

  • Menace

    @Mandy the injury stats will show that UK based loanees from Arsenal suffer more injuries than those loaned abroad.

    I do not like the loan system that allows clubs to loan players in the same division. It means they have more than 11 players on the field of play each week. Loans must be outside the division. EPL & FA must be made aware of the use of loans to enhance team presence in others colours.

  • bob

    Walter,
    Yes, as you say, some few (not most) of us did say from August that injuries would become a worry if we did not ensure with quality enough for rotation for 3/4 competitions. I told you so brings me no joy. But being overstretched in the business end has as much to do with too small a squad and not enough quality at striker as it does with being kicked. Both are true; and, hopefully with AW at the helm and money to spend (both) we will prevail starting with the August window.

  • Pat

    Injuries… Walter has presented us with a whole series of articles based on detailed research by this site and others that point the finger at the kick em brigade and the referees that let them get off with it.

    Nothing should be allowed to deflect from that fundamental fact.

    A small unaccountable clique of referees led by a man who has a proven record of being anti-Arsenal ensures that the table of referee bias against Arsenal is wholly red.

    We had an overstocked midfield and now we don’t – all down to injuries.

    All the other speculation on what causes Arsenal’s injuries is nothing more than that – speculation.

    And about the striker – we made a bid for the best striker in England last summer – a bid that now turns out to have been legitimate and that was turned down by the owner and manager of his club based on a lie about his contract. I refer to Suarez.

    Come on, people, let’s remember all this.

  • Sharpehunter

    This really isn’t about AKB’s or WOB’s or anything remotely as silly as both of those things. But it is about facing harsh facts, it is about understanding and appreciating things from a truly objective perspective and the main thing that all of these fan factions in and around Arsenal and the pro and anti media machines is that they are utterly unable to take an objective stance.

    Well I have. I have had an epiphany this week. Finally the penny dropped. I wrote about here – it is just an opinion and well formed opinion that is about the club as a whole, the team including the coaching staff and the players as a collective and there are positives and negatives – http://wp.me/2sRsI Read it if you dare face the truth and acknowledge reality!

  • Rupert Cook

    @Uncle Mike, that’s right mate, have a go at George Graham for winning a European trophy that got scrapped! I suppose you’ll blame him for that.

    I don’t know what you did when we won that final but if you were an Arsenal fan I suspect you were jumping up and down with pleasure. That would make you a hypocrite.

    Christ let’s write off every other manager’s achievements for our club. We all acknowledge how amazing Wenger has been for most of his time at Arsenal, have the good grace to acknowledge previous managers achievements.

    Who shall we attack next? Oh that Herbert Chapman was rubbish, he didn’t win the CL because he didn’t have the nous to invent it.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Agree Pete, just wonder why it has taken so long to look into this.

  • Sharpehunter

    I must admit that I had no idea about Hybrid Grass Pitches in Stadiums – wow! However this cannot be in anyway associated with our injury record because research indicates that Liverpool, Man City, Everton, Newcastle and many more have the same grass technology provided by the same supplier.

    My thoughts on injuries is really simple. We have less true depth in our squad in terms of real quality and we tend to play more games than most other teams. The first point for example – just look at the benches that Chelsea and City put out for most games. Even when Aguero, Kompany and Zabaleta are all injured at the same time they have a bench of international talent with over £120m in real value. The same applies to Chelsea. This means that we do push our quality players harder, they do play more games and very possibly are required to try and rehabilitate sooner.

    In the second example, we had to play a tough CL qualification round this year whilst our closest rivals didn’t and Liverpool for example haven’t even played a game in Europe this season (unless you class Wales as Europe). So in the case of Liverpool in particular they have had far less travel, far more recuperation and training time than any of the other top 4 clubs. A huge advantage and one I think they planned for.

  • Gooner S

    @Walter

    I am seeing the Frantic Four tomorrow evening in London at The Hammersmith Odeon. Your taste in music is as good as your taste in Football teams.
    🙂

  • Gooner S

    @Walter

    Read the whole post now I completely agree.

    But as my dialogue, in this comments section, a few days ago with @Andy1886 shows, even those that attended their first game in 1970 are disgruntled. “Finishing in the top 4 is not worth anything” was the comment addressed back at me.

    Expectations management is an important factor. Personally, when the stadium was announced, I wrote us off for 10 years of really being able to compete. I thought we’d drop out of the top 5. Just my view based upon the size of the investment, business experience and the changing football environment (Oil money etc). Well my personal expectations have been exceeded so far.I think, on the whole, Arsene Wenger has done a great job when there was little money to spend. So on the whole I’m happy. But I would say the club did not do a job of managing expectations and still dont. So whilst my own expectations were exceeded others (rightly or wrongly) thought we’d be winning sooner. Now during this time it is true to say that we have missed opportunities: Birmingham, we should have had at least one league title and arguably you could say this year is a missed opportunity with regards to the league but we have the cup still to play for 🙂 This does not stop me being dissapointed at performances like Tuesdays versus Swansea but it is a fleeting emotion these days. In our last two games the players really do have to look at themselves and their own performances.

    The club needs to handle things better. There is a lot of misinformation going around about what funds we have to spend on transfers. I dont expect Arsenal to name exact sums but they could do more at informing their following in what some of the published figure about ARsenal actually mean and therby addressing the miss information.

  • Sorry Walter but Arsenal were successful, very successful, before Wenger. George Graham won 6 trophies. We had a very poor spell between 71 and 89 for sure but you can’t take that period alone and compare it to Wengers reign. Arsene Wenger has not made Arsenal a big club, we have been that for generations. Only two other clubs in the country have won more league titles than us. Wenger has been at the helm for just 25% of our league title successes, so please don’t claim that we’re a big club due to Wenger – that is insulting to Arsenal FC. In our entire history I believe there have only been two periods that are worse than the current run without a trophy – might be wrong on that. The point being that we were were a big and successful club used to winning trophies BEFORE Wenger and we will be when he has gone.

  • Asif

    @ andy1886
    March 26, 2014 at 11:02 am – my regrets for the actual oversight…but Giroud has more than him in the league and that is the only competition in which they can be equated…