by ARSENAL 13.
ARSENAL still sit top of the league equal with Leicester on points, still 3 clear of Manchester City (supposedly our main rival for the title) just as we were before last night’s games. And seven points clear of the little chickens (in the 4th place) who for no obvious reasons finish below us every season.
Further down we have Manchester United (in 6th – now nine behind us), Liverpool (in 9th after last night’s game, ) and Chelsea (still in 14th). Season’s not over yet, but if we can’t enjoy the moments then how alive are we??
|5||West Ham United||21||9||8||4||33||24||9||35|
|13||West Bromwich Albion||21||7||6||8||22||27||-5||27|
And we are here despite injuries to our key players. We missed Rambo and Theo to injury. Then Santi and Le Coq. Arteta, Rosicky and now Alexis. Rambo and Theo are back, to their best almost. Arteta had a brief outing this weekend and another last night. Rosicky is back in training. Soon we’ll have Alexis back. Looking strong are we.
And then consider the late arrival of Welbeck and Wilshere. And the imminent arrival of Elneny (confirmed as signed this morning) makes our squad look super strong and capable of big things this season. A football expert (oh dear!!) went on to say that we have the best squad in the league bar Man City. *coughs*
Do we? If we rewind……to the summer transfer window 2015, all we heard was ARSENAL need to sign a beast of a DM. A beast of a CD. And a CF*. Since we signed Cech, calls for beast of a GK has died down. But without signing 3 beasts we had no chance of competing, Ignoring the fact that the same (almost) squad had won FA Cup 2 years running. And there seems to be NO mantra of internal improvements/solutions.
We signed 3 players (2 youth) at around £12 million. Compare that to our supposed title rivals Manchester City. They have signed 9 players at £150 million, with Sterling, De Bruyne, Otamendi and Delph making it to the first team. ie at least 10 times that of ours! Yet injuries to key players like Kompany, Aguero and Silva derailed their season (somewhat if we believe the experts).
And what about the boring Manchester Utd. Well they have signed 7 players paying at least £100 million of which 6 players went into the first team. Yet no one seems to understand Van Gaals philosophy!! And every week we hear the ‘injuries to key players’ statement. Just can’t make out who their key players are.
Chelsea, the champions, the club who will win it again this season also did spend around £ 60 million on players and then signed a new manager. Now the self proclaimed ‘special one’ was not special anymore. Our neighbours have also emptied their pockets at around £ 50 million. And so have Liverpool at £ 80 million. Liverpool also have a new manager and new injuries.
What am I ranting about? Well, Mr Wenger has been accused of not spending money. Despite the overwhelming facts available that spending doesn’t guarantee on-field success. All the above mentioned big clubs (chicken!! big!!! seriously!!!) have spent more than Mr Wenger, but also have dropped out of the hallowed top 4. Which is important for a big club stature, as LVG rightly pointed out.
Mr Wenger was ridiculed for saying top 4 was ‘like’ a trophy. A man who built the modern ARSENAL was declared no good enough for the new age football. He was tactically inept. He wouldn’t let Bould do defensive coaching. He was laughed at for a slip inside the railway station. He was hounded by the very people who call themselves fans for not winning a football game. They even laugh at him for his inability to smoothly zip his jackets.
Sometimes I look at him and feel sad for him. A man who sacrificed his life and personal glories for us, what has he done wrong to deserve this?. But also am surprised by his enthusiasm, the will power and his vision for football, ARSENAL and life in general. Where does he get this strength from? And then I see this.
on David Bowie…
I am a fan of his music of course, but I am not a specialist enough to assess his musical quality. I must say the message he gave to my generation was very important because it was after the Second World War and it was basically – be strong enough to be yourself. That is a very strong message and very important for my generation.
Mr Wenger is asked all sorts of things in his pressers. And they get replies too. Sometimes they (journalists) don’t understand a word he says. Mr Wenger was asked about David Bowie, a great musician who was considered as an innovator, who died of cancer this Monday. And this is the best tribute the great singer could’ve ever got. And if there is anyone who has lived the message, it’s Mr Wenger. No amount of pressure, competition, mockery or ridicule could ever change his vision for ARSENAL and football. In the world where knee jerk reactions, over the top opinions and fantasy football managers reign supreme, he stayed true and strong.
Stay strong Mr Wenger. Stay strong.
* Olivier Giroud has scored 12 goals in 15 league starts and 6 appearances as a sub.
Insult of the day (for everyone who said we should sign a new centre forward)
He takes false shadows for true substances (Titus Andronicus)
Two recent anniversaries (more on the home page)
- 14 January 2006: Arsenal 7 Middlesbrough 0. Henry scored a hat-trick. This game equalled the highest Premier League win for the club, previously achieved on 11 March 2005. Senderos, Pires, Gilberto and Hleb got the others.
- 14 January 2015: Benik Afobe sold to Wolverhampton Wanderers for £2m. He never played for Arsenal but had multiple loans including 22 league games for MK Dons where he scored 19 goals in 30 league and cup games. He scored 8 in his first 14 matches for Wolverhampton and in January 2016 moved to Bournemouth for £12m.
New from the history society
Arsenal in the 70s: July to Dec 1975. Just when we thought it couldn’t get any worse…