- How the media’s hypocrisy over VAR is both astonishing and shameful.
- After the Everton case what happens to Chelsea and Manchester City?
When it comes to the possible transgressions of both Chelsea and Manchester City, there is a lot of talk about the possible sanctions that could be imposed upon them. Now that Everton have been given a 10 point deduction for what seem to be much less serious breaches of Fair Play rules, the sanctions could be enormous.
Given the precedent set in Scotland with Rangers, for example, demotion to the lowest tier of English football wouldn’t seem beyond the realms of possibility, depending on the level of guilt of course. Although as that level of sanction may seem reasonable in the worst-case scenario I simply couldn’t see that happening, but you never know. Only time will tell.
Now if, and I repeat if, Chelsea and Manchester City are found guilty, I believe their punishment should be at least demotion to The Championship, possibly lower. But whatever happens to them, nothing will give back to the other clubs what their shenanigans potentially took from them, and THAT may turn out to be an even bigger issue than the punishment Chelsea and Man City may or may not receive.
How do you even begin to calculate the effect those two clubs had on everybody else? And make no mistake, they affected every club they played, and every club that ever played in the Premier League.
It’s not simply about the loss of one or two positions in the table that may or may not have resulted in the loss of a title, a Champions league place or contributed to a relegation. It’s about more than that. These are actually quite tangible, visible, equitable losses, but there are other, less obvious, much more subtle, but arguably even more damaging issues to be considered.
Take our own club for example. The effect the rise of those two clubs had on us was much more than just the loss of ‘a couple of places’ in the table. As I will show, it was/is incalculable.
The first thing that happened was to our players. It didn’t take them long to realise winning the PL was now going to be almost impossible. That led to them getting unsettled which eventually led to many of them leaving. Not only leaving, but very often moving aborad or to those two teams directly, so not only weakening us, but strengthening them.
The second thing was the problem of attracting elite players that may have otherwise come to us. Not only were we under the financial restraints incurred by the building of the Emirates, but potential signings could see the limitless funds available elsewhere. They could see what we were up against.
If it hadn’t been for Wenger’s genius in maintaining Champions League football season after season, we really would have been in serious trouble attracting anyone.
The third, was how the above two scenarios turned the entire media against us. Not only the Club in general, but our players only had to appear a tad below ‘invincible’ and they were slaughtered. And then of course, as we all know, Wenger was on the end of endless abuse, despite the aforementioned miraculous achievement of maintaining top four finishes on a zero net spend.
And last but not least was the effect all this endless abuse and criticism had on our fan base.
It turned way too many hitherto loyal fans completely against their own Club, manager, and players. It has taken an absolutely Herculean effort from the club in general, and Arteta and the players in particular, finally to win back those fans.
And to be clear, this re-engagement of the fans has nothing to do with ‘success’ per se. In Wenger’s last five years he won 3 FA cups and on the back of that three Community Shields. Finishing second once, but that didn’t stop the abuse for more than an afternoon.
Arteta has won one FA Cup, with Wenger’s team I may add, and come second once.
Now of course I’m not knocking Arteta, I think he’s doing a fantastic job. But you have to take into account he has spent more in the last 2 seasons than Wenger in his entire tenure. It is to compare chalk and cheese. And yes I accept that in Wenger’s last 18 months, things had taken a turn for the worse.
But my point is, the anti-Wenger bandwagon, and anti-everything Arsenal bandwagon in fact, had been at full throttle for over 10 years, and it all started with the arrival of the oil money and the massive detrimental effect that had on our football club.
I don’t believe any other club was affected to the level that Arsenal Football Club was. Not only in the overt loss of two places in the League table simply due to the arrival of those two teams in the top four, but in the even bigger, but more subtle losses such as:
- Loss of value of our club
- Ability to keep players
- Ability to sign players
- Tthe enormous detrimental effect on our fan base
- And last but not least on the back of all those, the loss of Arsene Wenger
The enormous loss to Arsenal football club due to the massive, possibly illegal spending of those two clubs is incalculable.
I suspect many other clubs and their supporters will feel similarly disadvantaged.
- Arsenal v Wolverhampton Wanderers: where will each team finish?
- Arsenal v Lens: what we found, what we felt, what they did
- Arsenal v Lens: the team, the home/away form and the strange coincidences
- Arsenal v Lens: they had a poor start but are now flying
- Where there is power, money and greed there is corruption