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“It’s been 12 hours since we last attacked Arsène Wenger. What’s keeping you???”

By Tony Attwood

That headline, or something akin to it, must have been the instruction given out this morning to by the sports editor of the Telegraph to their Football News Correspondent Matt Law.

For while other papers dealt reasonably with the issue of the clash of loyalty when a coach at a club is also employed as a pundit, the Telegraph certainly couldn’t get the point.  Indeed couldn’t get it so much at having scampered in at 9.59am yesterday with “Arsene Wenger’s decision to reject Thierry Henry’s offer is another sign of Arsenal manager preferring his voice to be the only one heard” they then had a quick whisk round to follow that up with “Henry aims to prove Wenger wrong by combining TV alongside coaching career.”

The essence of the two articles was this.  The said correspondent, being a little out of touch with the way of the world, was “surprised” how much Mr Wenger was on TV.   That really doesn’t show him up in a good light.  Mr W is a superb person to have on TV, with his encyclopedic knowledge of players, football, stats… his easy wit and charm.  He is a very popular person on the TV and over the years he has moved from channel to channel.

So having found out rather late in the day (perhaps because the Telegraph either doesn’t have access to French TV or doesn’t have anyone who speaks French) that the Arsenal manager does TV beyond the nonsense interviews with Sky and BT, they then decided that this was a good thing to hit him with, when there was a problem with Thierry Henry doing Sky and Arsenal coaching.

This time they were telling us that Henry could go to Watford or West Ham or even a “national association.”

To show how odd all this is, consider this bit that was then thrown in.  “Henry had been willing to work alongside Kwame Ampadu with Arsenal’s Under-18s for free and assured Wenger that his Sky commitments would not become an issue, but the 66-year-old would not budge.”  What does the working for free have to do with anything?   Sky pay Henry around £4m a year for his work, and he clearly is a good pundit.  So what difference would it make if Arsenal didn’t have to pay him?

It was up to the Guardian to quote Thierry’s comment, “I would like to  thank Andries Jonker for offering me the chance to coach the U18s  @arsenal, which I was honoured to accept. However I respect Arsène  Wenger’s decision and I want to wish their manager Kwame Ampadu, the  boys and everyone at the club all the best for the forthcoming  season.”  I think the Telegraph have now added that to their piece.

Meanwhile Tony Adams has taken on the work with the Under-18s on a trial basis and both sides are seeing how that works out.   Freddie Ljungberg is working with the under 15s and under 16s.

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49 comments to “It’s been 12 hours since we last attacked Arsène Wenger. What’s keeping you???”

  • Al

    Good riddance, anyone willing to slate his former club (particularly one that made him world class) unfairly over money is a Judas. It gets worse when said former player knows exactly how unfairly his former club is treated, but chooses to stick the knife in.

  • nicky

    If, as reported, Henry wished to combine coaching at Arsenal while continuing as a pundit on Sky TV, there is no way, in my view, that Arsene could accept such a situation.
    Henry could not serve two masters and Arsene could not allow a servant of Arsenal FC freedom to possibly broadcast criticism of the Club.

  • colario

    It is sad that Henry has chosen £4 million in preference to loyalty to Arsenal and in particular Arsene.

    As for doing the coaching without payment. I don’t know if Henry was being paid to do the coaching work. I do know the club was given him the chance to do his courses and establish himself on the coaching staff of the club.

    He chose £4 Million and loyalty to Sky and indirectly if not directly to Rupert Murdock.

    How sad.

    Does anyone really believe that another club will allow him to do his coaching badges with them and at the same time criticise them on Sky TV?

  • Mick

    From the Telegraph article….
    ‘So they go on by saying, “Sources around the Gunners suspect… that Wenger does not want the 38-year-old around the training ground during the final year of his contract…. The theory goes that Wenger does not want anybody around him who may be perceived to challenge his authority if things are going wrong.”
    What an utterly stupid thing to say, Matt Law is a total idiot. If it were the case then Wenger would not have offered him the job. But he was offered a job on condition he gave up the punditry. The main issue which anyone can surely see is that the punditry would impinge on the coaching job, a full time appointment which would require 100% commitment.

  • Usama Zaka

    The state of this newspaper “The Telegraph” Why do they even bother considering themselves as a newspaper and contributing to journalism, given their agenda driven articles every day against Arsenal.

    The major local newspaper for our city is the ‘Gulf News’ Its quite decent overall to be honest . But whenever I go through the Sports Section, there always is an editorial from “The Telegraph” in the second or third page. And whenever it is from the “The Telegraph” 7 out of ten times its about Arsenal. I just skip reading it and ignore it and later use that page for table cleaning 🙂

    If you read or have heard Arsene Wenger’s interviews over the last 5 years or so, he has mentioned that when he joined AFC it was him and Pat Rice who were part of managerial staff. And now his team of mangerial staff is huge and ever growing. There is a coach and assistant for each part of age group below 21, there are scouts in each major nation, there are scouts in different continents, there is statistical analysis group part of Arsenal STATDNA, there is chief transfer negotiator, etc… (soo much more now).

    Boro Primorac, Steve Gatting, Andries Jonker, Steve Bould, Freddie Ljunberg, and now potentially Tony Adams, these are the names that come straight to mind without looking at Arsenal.com These people are working and lots of others are working full time as a part of Arsenal’s Managerial and Coaching staff (and that Arsene Wenger also).

    So if Henry wanted to part of the coaching staff, it was always going to be full time and would have demanded full commitment towards AFC. Now it was right of Arsenal to ask to him to quit SKY if wanted this job at AFC. Of course you can’t coach one day and go the next two days on TV joining the agenda driven rotten potatoes at SKY and bashing and trashing our club.

    I just cant how believe the media and the “fans” can consider Arsenal Football Club to be the wrong ones here.

  • Usama Zaka

    *** (that includes* Arsene Wenger also)

  • Usama Zaka

    **little word I forgot in the 4th paragraph.

  • You see – (why do some football supporters of a certain football club get so angry) – THIS IS WHY! More cheap shot journalism by supposed creditable sources. Any tiny opportunity to twist the knife in a little more…

  • Pete

    Control-freak Wenger is to blame. So what if Henry works for Sky while coaching Arsenal – as long as his media work does not infringe on his coaching duties. And it obviously didn’t otherwise he never would have been offered the job in the first place.

    As usual, selfish Wenger is only concerned about himself and will always put himself first above the needs and requirements of the club. Henry has never criticised the club on Sky, he just made some truthful observations. The problem is Wenger, he wants the facts to be manipulated in his favour so he can control the fan base.

  • Polo

    This article is also laughable, so it’s AW fault that Arsenal is not buying Higuain because of the agents comment. Seriously, if a club wants a player they will do the deal no matter what anyone says. The AW bashing continues.

    http://metro.co.uk/2016/07/13/arsenal-boss-arsene-wenger-pulls-plug-on-olivier-giroud-gonzalo-higuain-swap-deal-6004413/

  • Samuel Akinsola Adebosin

    Hmm, this is interesting. From all indications, Thiery O’herry is enjoying his punditry job with Sky Sports and also loved to continue coaching the Arsenal Under 18 squad but for free.

    Are Arsenal overzealous for errecting O’herry’s statue outside the Emirates Stadium? Would this episode of the alleged disloyalty by O’herry to the Boss make Arsenal to in future wait until a former star of theirs becomes late, before deciding if he’s worthy to have his statue errectted at the Emirates?

    Was Thirrey O’herry overzealous too to have criticized the Boss’transfer policy last season of not signing 4 top quality players to include a marquee striker which according to O’herry, would have seen Arsenal lift the Barclays Premier League title last season?

    Honestly, I don’t know the answers for these 2 questions I’ve asked. I am just pondering.

  • Akeem Adetayo Oyalowo

    same telegraph newspaper published a report of the Arsenal-Liverpool game last season at the emirates and conveniently omits Aaron Ramsey’s legitimate goal that was canceled but criticized Arsenal’s performance all round and concluded the team should have lost when it was the one that scored a goal.

  • Pete could you provide some evidence to back up the claim that “As usual, selfish Wenger is only concerned about himself and will always put himself first above the needs and requirements of the club”

  • Justin Chinedu

    I don’t expect anything good from the papers on Arsenal, well, you can only give what you have; and they(most newspapers and bloggers) are shit…and it’s all they have. The way Arsenal is being dragged into any story to portray the club in a bad light. To true fans, this is your club, support them.About the papers, oh they are trash by dawn…

  • Leon

    “It is sad that Henry has chosen £4 million in preference to loyalty to Arsenal and in particular Arsene”

    Are you being serious?.
    There was an obvious conflict (in Wengers eyes) with the two roles being virtually incompatible, and there was no loyalty involved at all as Henry was offering generously to continue to coach for free, so he chose the more lucrative option.
    I would, wouldn’t you?

  • RK

    One aspect Tony that I think has been overlooked as everyone says “But Wenger appears on TV…” Is that he never appears during the season and, to the best of my knowledge, has never criticized current or former Arsenal players in these roles. Perhaps the condition was simply that he not appear on Sky when the season was in progress – not even choose us or them!

  • Andrew Crawshaw

    As I understand it, the work Thiery did with the U18s and U17s last season was on a part-time basis. The post he was offered for this season was a full-time one as assistant for the U18s. It is very difficult to see how anyone can perform properly in two full time jobs for different organisations with different but overlapping priorities. It is rumoured that Tomy Adams has stepped in to the role (on a trial basis maybe). Welcome back Tony.

  • colario

    Usama Zaka
    July 13, 2016 at 2:23 pm
    You wrote:

    I just cant how believe the media and the “fans” can consider Arsenal Football Club to be the wrong ones here.

    I can.

  • colario

    Leon
    July 13, 2016 at 3:11 pm

    You wrote
    ‘There was an obvious conflict (in Wengers eyes) with the two roles being virtually incompatible, and there was no loyalty involved at all as Henry was offering generously to continue to coach for free, so he chose the more lucrative option.
    I would, wouldn’t you?’

    Arsene and thereby the club ask of all their employees loyalty to their employer.

    While working at club in order to get his training badges Henry has taken it on himself to publicly criticise the club.

    Compare this situation to that of Lee Dixon.

    Lee has publicly acknowledged that Arsene lengthened his playing career by three years.

    I have heard Lee criticise Arsene on Radio 5.

    This saddens me. However this isn’t a breach of contract of loyalty by Lee.

    Let’s put it another way. I work as a shelf filler in a supermarket. I spend my spare time attacking the supermarket as being useless.

    Who cares what I say I am just a shelf filler?

    However I am the manager of a large supermarket owned by one of the big supermarket chains. I take on myself to publicly criticise the company.

    Do you think I will still be manager the next day?

    Henry isn’t a kid who didn’t make the grade at Arsenal.

    Henry is an Arsenal giant. How did he arrive at this status at the club solely because of management inspiration, knowledge and loyalty.

    Last season he was offered the chance to do his badges at the club and what does he do by way of thank you?

  • Pete

    “Pete could you provide some evidence to back up the claim that “As usual, selfish Wenger is only concerned about himself and will always put himself first above the needs and requirements of the club” – Tony Attwood

    I could provide 100 Tony, but don’t have the time or the energy. What I would say is that it’s universally accepted that the board has granted permission for Wenger to be the manager of Arsenal for as long as he wants to be. With that in mind, considering his consistent underperformance based on the salary he is paid, the resources at his disposal and the current underperformance of almost all of his competitiors, the right thing for him to do would be to admit he is no longer up to the job and hand the reigns over to another manager rather than selfishly continuing.

  • Atid

    Pete, also Henry was only coaching 1 day a week last season. However with Frank de Kat leaving he was offered a full-time roll
    At the same time with Sky now needing pundits for more matches Henry was offered more work. He had to choose between the new salary on offer from arsenal or the new much bigger salary from sky. Quite simply he could not do both jobs.

    On another note, Arsenal were supporting Henry last season whilst he is doing his coaching badges. Very similarly, when I did my coaching badges I too worked for free as a Coach for the club’s concerned. If I hadn’t I wouldn’t have been able to complete my badges. That too is pretty normal. An exception was Mike Arteta, who Arsenal paid as a player and allowed him your do his coaching badges, because they were certain he was going to stay as a Coach with the club. However, Guardiola offered him far more money and a higher coaching role, so he has chosen City. For me that is a far worse scenario than this Henry situation.

  • RedNorth

    Is he going to buy a striker and defender now that he’s got the most important top priority matter of Henry’s punditry and coaching out of the way ?

  • Leon

    colario

    I take your point about “loyalty” while in an employment, but Arsenal knew he was working for Sky before they took him on as a coach in the first place (Sky are his employers not Arsenal) so what did they expect?
    I might be wrong, but I don’t think Henry was actually employed by Arsenal, but had an offer of a coaching role, but he wasn’t getting any favours done by being allowed to take his coaching badges at the club, he can get them anywhere.
    You’re suggesting that Henry owes Arsenal some kind of debt of gratitude and is obligated to them: he’s not: He left the club nine years ago, and this was after he showed his loyalty by turning down an earlier transfer to Barca opportunity.
    HENRY IS NOT DISLOYAL.

  • Tom

    In a game of very small margins ,which is the PL , how long does anyone think it would take Mourinho or any other top manager with a full control over all football maters at his club , to get rid of a distraction or just a nuisance Henry’s punditry clearly was last season.

    If anything, Wenger had shown a remarkable restrain.

  • Des

    This is THe perfect example of a story deliberately propogTed to inflame and antoganise and give those with an agenda, an excuse to bash Wenger.

    It’s pure bollocks!

  • Des

    Leon

    Red some of the other posts for some actual insight and more information.

  • nicky

    @Leon,
    Those of us with long memories will recall Henry’s last season before departing to Barca, as one where his mind was clearly elsewhere (like Fabregas’s was in similar circs). His performance that season suffered as a result.
    Many of us were not sorry to see him go as his time was clearly up.

  • Leon

    nicky

    Agreed.
    But he had lots of injuries that season and still scored ten goals in seventeen matches.
    I think we made the right choice to let him go at that point.

  • Ken1945

    Lads don’t get your knickers in a twist…just stop buying this rag.
    As for T.H. a bit dissapointed in his decision, but Tony taking over is a real fillip.

  • Tom

    Hello Al
    I have noticed you have only four dislikes( none from me, again) yet I’m around.
    Maybe you getting 10 dislikes on previous occasions has more to do with you posting like a lunatic and less with any particular poster being involved in a debate.

    Also, you seem to be overly preoccupied with the likes and dislikes .
    Are you by any chance a prepubescent teen?
    🙂

  • Andy Mack

    I’ll be very surprised if Henry gets a coaching role at any PL club whilst he’s a TV pundit. I expect he’ll have to go to a championship club (or lower division, assuming he doesn’t work on championship or lower televised games) to complete his coaching badges.

  • Brickfields Gunners

    Detecting a cheating man-

    A woman asks Swami Anonymous ,” I think my husband is cheating on me .I suspect one particular woman .”

    The Swami replies , ” Take your husband to that woman’s doorstep …and see if his wi-fi connects automatically !”

    Beware -technology can be dangerous !

  • Andy Mack

    I wonder how the Telegraph would react if Matt Law got a side job working for a TV show that reviewed the newspapers and their articles. I’m pretty certain they wouldn’t be keen and I’m 100% certain he’d be out on his ear the first time he was derogatory about the Telegraph.

  • Pete: I have posted your reply because it is informative in the on-going debate here about evidence, but I would ask that from here on you abide by the rules of the site, at least out of courtesy to the many who do, and provide evidence for your claims in the comments section

  • Notoverthehill

    Tony, no need to waste time on Pete!

    IF, Mr Wenger is so, so, so mediocre, why are the FA so interested?

    Of course, the FA are inept.

    Why is it, that people who have no knowledge of how a football club operates, condemn someone who is looked upto, by his peers?

    I admired the ManCity supporters, for supporting their club, regardless. Even though, Tony did not cut and paste.

  • Al

    Tom
    You will not believe this but I actually clicked like on your post at 4:28pm, I was like wow is this Tom saying this?

    Then as I scrawled down reading each comment I come across your second post in which, unfortunately, you revert to type. And I clicked dislike on that one 🙂

    Moral of the story; I don’t look at the name, rather I look at the content of the post, unlike some who just click dislike when they see a post by someone they don’t like, regardless of the content.

    No, I’m not a teen, nope, I just find it creepy for anyone to click on like/dislike button on a post in rapid succession. I find it a little disconcerting to be around such individuals, don’t know about you, just like someone posting under multiple identities (we had one who was talking to himself once on here, by using two names of rolf and tailgunner). Another one liked their own post, which was in moderation meaning noone else could have seen it other than themselves. Doesn’t something like that bother you? Such behaviour is definitely creepy in my book.

  • Pete

    If you read my second post again Tony, you will see how I’ve given a perfect example of why I think Mr Wenger is only concerned about himself and will always put himself first above the needs and requirements of the club.

  • WalterBroeckx

    Pete,
    a phrase like “it’s universally accepted that the board has granted permission for Wenger to be the manager of Arsenal for as long as he wants to be” is no evidence at all.

    Universally accepted is gravity even when you can’t see it. I think 8-10billion people or whatever the number is these days will accept it.

    But I think only in your small university your sentence is accepted.

    So you base your claim on an empty box.

    The only way you could be telling the truth is by giving evidence of this. Not just assuming something is like you say it is because you say so.

  • Chris

    Pete,

    thank you for your answer which is a perfect demonstration of what this site, mostly through Tony, has been addressing.
    I hope other readers will have seen the brilliant effort.

    Sure, you have 100 evidence elements, but ” Your Honour, why should I have to even tell you one ? Is not the fact that I pretend to have 100 evidence elements enough to rule the defendant guilty as charged and condemn him to death row ?”

    Zapping generation. Just throw sh… at anyone, some of it will stick, then move on. Which is basically the strategy of any army incapable of sustaining a longer battle, of any person incapable of holding a longer discussion : just harrass and retreat.

    Just surprised you did not use SMS language, it’s quicker, shorter and you can move on faster after having not added anything to the debate but having not had the courage to stand up to your opinions.

    If you think the AFC board is wrong, why don’t you just inform yourself and read the financial statements and compare them of thos of Spurs, City, United or Liverpool. Hope your pension fund is managed as well and not investing in PL league clubs.

    As for the TH story, I just do not understand how people can come screaming about conflict of interest when Baroso goes to Goldman Sachs and just not see the one with TH being a AFC employee (even if for zilch) and having to give opinion(s) on his boss.

    Or do you wish to seriously want us to believe you could have accepted that your daughther’s ex boyfriend’s father would be judge at her exams….. or your spouse’s ex on the performance evaluation board of your company ?!?! Or any combination thereof.

    So show some courage and respect and tell us at least 10 evidence elements of the 100 you are talking about. Then we can have a discussion. Not a pissing contest. Quite a few people here would welcome it.

    And by the way, as far as I know AW comments for french TV, and I never saw/heard him on other than international games. which is a far cry from being on the telly talking negative one week-end after another.

  • I think Pete that other correspondents have shown you that we have a totally different vision – one could say more of a dictionary definition – of words like “evidence” which is not the same as example. I think it is clear that you just use words in a different way from most of us, when considering issues like evidence and phrases like “logical deduction”. There are many Arsenal sites around where you won’t be challenged on your use of language, and it seems rather pointless to get into a semantic debate on a football site, when you have your own definitions of words, and we tend to use dictionary definitions.

    Good luck with your re-working of the language – but I don’t think this is the right forum for it.

  • lee

    Tony there wasnt much evidence used in your blog about Man City and anti child trafficking just a lot of copy and pasting ,something i didnt think you allowed on this site.But i suppose your the boss and just like at arsenal you con do what you like and are not held accountable to anyone.

  • ARSENAL 13

    I dont understand all the fuss about. Its only the media making noise as it lost an insider….

    1. If Mr Wenger has asked Henry to decide, its a good thing. Henry has to decide whats good for him too. Media or the coaching job. Of course Mr Wenger does the punditry. But thats only for internationals. And that is the difference.
    2. Henry does it for free?? Are you sure?? Lets see what he get in return….An academy full of potential future stars. His coaching badge progress gets easier. Ask anyone who has ambitions to be a coach, how easy it is without any facilities that Henry gets for free.

  • finsbury

    I blame Vengarrrrrrrghhhhhhhhhhhhhh

  • Tom

    Hello Al
    I’ll skip the likes / dislikes issue since I don’t give a rat’s ass about those, but I’ll gladly address the part of your comment that deals with you being surprised by mine sticking up for Arsene Wenger.

    I have done planty of that in the past, which gets easily forgotten on this site by posters with zero tolerance for any Wenger criticism whatsoever.

    Also, about me “reverting to type” in my second comment.
    If anyone has a “type” it’s posters like yourself, who are highly predictable with their opinions.

    You only liked my first post because it was pro Wenger and not because it was insightful.
    If I posted something factual about Arsenal or Wenger that was less than complementary, most likely than not , you would’ve disliked it no matter how truthful it was.

    You may accept “positive” comments from posters you dislike, like myself.
    I go one step further and accept negative comments from posters who aren’t necessarily my cup of tea, as longest I can’t find anything wrong with their logic or facts.
    That’s the difference between you and I as far as posting on this site goes.

  • Jeremy O Dwyer

    After reading comments on a few of the saner websites, I’m glad to see that, by and large, Arsenal fans are siding with Arsene on this one.

  • Jambug

    Pete

    “As usual, selfish Wenger is only concerned about himself and will always put himself first above the needs and requirements of the club”

    -Like when he used the money from the Anelka sale to help finance the building of the new state of the art training facilities instead of players that would of helped him achieve more personal glory?

    -Like when he decided to put his own personal glory on hold by committing to the building of the Emirates Stadium, that will benefit Arsenal FC for many many years after his departure, instead of jumping ship to one of his many suitors he had courting him, and still has by the sound of it?

    you say;

    “I could provide 100 (pieces of evidence) Tony, but don’t have the time or the energy.”

    and go on to suggest that this:

    “With that in mind, considering his consistent underperformance based on the salary he is paid, the resources at his disposal and the current underperformance of almost all of his competitors, the right thing for him to do would be to admit he is no longer up to the job and hand the reigns over to another manager rather than selfishly continuing.”

    is 1 of them.

    How, under any interpretation is that ‘evidence’? If that’s your best bit of evidence out of your 100 examples then you really are desperate.

    That is ‘opinion’, no more no less. Yes, it might be your ‘opinion’ that Wenger has constantly underperformed, but that’s all it is, your ‘opinion’. My ‘opinion’ is that Wenger has ‘over’ performed. So that’s that out of the way.

    On the other hand I have provided 2 pieces of evidence that seriously contradict your accusation.

    Wenger made 2 career defining decisions and he made them BOTH in favour of Arsenal FC ahead of himself.

    Selfish you call him?

    You really are having a laugh.

  • Jambug

    ARSENAL 13

    “I dont understand all the fuss about. Its only the media making noise as it lost an insider….”

    I think you are missing the point.

    This is not really so much about what Henry has done, what Wenger has done, or why either of them has done it, but more about how, yet again the media has blown the slightest thing up out of all proportion, simply in an effort to insight and agitate the anti Wenger factions.

    Put simply, they’re just creating yet another stick with which to bash Wenger.

    I think that’s more what this is about, rather than the actual departure of Henry, for whatever reason.

    I mean, lets be honest, will we even notice he’s gone? Did we even notice he was there??

  • Al

    Tom,
    I can see you’re simply taking what I told you I did and using that as a stick to beat me with, while claiming all the credit for yourself. It’s ok, Tom, whatever makes you feel better 🙂

  • Leon

    I think the outcome was both predictable and actions sensible from both Wenger and Henry. His Sky work was far too much in conflict with any Arsenal role so TH quietly stepped down.