Are Arsenal a selling club ? The true crack(s) of the great Arsenal way !

Are Arsenal a selling club ? The true crack(s) of the great Arsenal way !

Ibrahima Fode NDIAYE

For the last couple weeks or months or even years, Arsenal FC its board and manager are under immense critics from all corners. The general consensus is that Arsenal are an unambitious selling club only interested in making financial profits.

In this article I would like to come back to the Arsenal way into becoming a giant club and the truth about the « selling club tag ».

Living the history side of Arsenal to Tony with his great book and blog (, we all know how we have been earning and winning way less than Manchester United.. Arsene and the board having realised that there’s no way we can compete with Manchester without coming on par with them with our financial means.

Encouraged by the Wembley attendances during champions league home games, they decided it was possible to build a new stadium, develop further the Arsenal brand and make Arsenal a true English and European giant.

Of course that needed sacrifice, forward looking and a present standing in order to achieve. So the Emirates Stadium project was born. A lot of risks financially and sportively were taken but the project took off. By having having got great sponsorship deals at the time front loaded with the debt to build the stadium and to redevelop Highbury Arsenal took a huge financial gamble and an even bigger sportive risk.

The sportive risk became bigger with the genius that Wenger is, got some great results that helped the Arsenal brand reach very high levels very very soon. That made the expectations even bigger. From qualifying to the champions league at least once every four years as the initial plan was, we’ve gone to expecting to win every title at every start of a season, which in itself shows we did very very well in the football front. As for the way the financial risks came along there are so many reports and analysis thrown every where I believe every knows we did very well there too.

What I would love to bring here is the way we’ve been developing the football side along the financial involvement which I believe has become the Arsenal way.

What Wenger did during 2002 and 2004, was to build a very strong squad with over 36 million pounds net lost on transfer fees and with a the biggest wage bill in the country. That’s what gave him the best and most successful squad in England with two PL titles, two FA cups and an entire season unbeaten in the league to show for it.

So the Arsenal plan to keep the footballing result good enough to support the finances which are destined to make the football reach even greater highs was : THE YOUTH PROJECT ! It was very logical that Arsenal would not be able to pay the biggest wage bill and pay top fees for transfers but at the same time we clearly needed to stay strong. What the youth project gave us was relatively efficient replacements.

So the invincibles were leaving while youngsters were getting promotions. From the Vieira-Gilberto midfield we went to Flamini-Cesc, from Ljundberg-Pires we went to Rosicky-Hleb, from Bergkamp-Henry-Wiltord-Kanu we went to Van persie-Adebayor-Eduardo-Bendtner between to 2005 to 2008.

The 2008 team replaced the invincibles very well albeit without the titles to show for it – but I think Arsenal supporters were very excited. These younger, cheaper teams performed well beyond their talent but yet not at their true potential.

The cracks of the Arsenal appeared right at the end of the 2008 season.  I believe the communication and the PR were the very first problems. Hleb and Flamini were gone, Adebayor lost his reputation, fans and mojo, Rosicky had a long term injury,  Eduardo was broken to pieces.

We had the possibilities to come out and defend our ideals, to see check back our objectives and show our ambition and philosophy to specially the fans and probably the media. Wenger did his bit with « we don’t buy stars we make them » stance but I felt we were very week in the way defended ourselves.

Flamini ran out his contract and left. Flamini was having problems meeting his potential and only had limited opportunities in midfield prior to the 2008 season. He did not warrant a new deal and was about to get the boot before the start of the season. He begged for a last chance which Wenger gave him and asked him to prove he can warrant a new deal at Arsenal. After getting his last chance and rightly deserving a new contract he gave Arsenal the boot and flew to Milan only to fail to perform at the same level again never performed to his true potential.

Hleb’s case was different as he had a pretty solid contract. He did want to leave England according to reports right after the Birmingham game in which Eduardo got slaughtered; what an irony as he ultimately went to the Brimmies.

Where were the Arsenal communications surrounding these moves ? Reports were coming from everywhere but no one thought it useful to give real inside to fans about the way these guys left. A good PR could have united the fans with the players around and with the club a lot better than the way most of us depressed and cursed the summer and everything arsenal.

Something good was that we didn’t let the Flamini situation happen again at Arsenal at least not with his compatriot Samir.

Wenger has shown he can get the best of a group of players after around two years. Lately his biggest problem has been retaining a squad for over two years and keeping players fit.

I believe it’s very unfair to tag us a selling club as we only lose players that clearly don’t want to stay despite all we can offer. Without his Barcelona connections we would not sell Fabregas and without the intention of running out his contract Nari would still be an Arsenal player compared that to a big club like AC Milan selling KAKA to Real Madrid despite the player stating he would love to stay with the rossoneris or Drogba joining Chelsea despite his love for Marseille. You are a selling club when you’re ready to listen to any big offer to any player without the players willingness to stay or not. We haven’t been selling players for the good of the money but for circumstances where the player clearly wants to go or is not required at the club hardly a selling club then.

Now the way forward to regroup more players that will feel a strong bond with Arsenal. The likes of Scheszny, Gibbs, Frimpong, Wilshere, Afobe and other upcoming youngsters from the true YOUTH SYSTEM will feel more attached to the crest while long time supporters like Van Persie, Gervinho are brought in.  With us not being a « selling club » we will maintain our good players.

As for the injuries, Wenger is building larger squad to face them but the amount we’re getting is just ridiculous and needs a real look-in.

But let’s first get going in the communication stuff as despite having the coolest official website, the Arsenal PR is not at the level of the brand. We need to manage better our reputation and our brand and not let the media manage them for us !

The Sun goes bananas even by its own sub-basement standard – but please note this article may cause distress to sensitive readers

Major explosion at Arsenal’s ground*

44 Replies to “Are Arsenal a selling club ? The true crack(s) of the great Arsenal way !”

  1. I’m struggling to find any argumentative connection with anything you’ve said.

  2. So Cahill is worth more than the derisory £6000000.00!!! Oh dear what a surprise no offers have been made yet!!

    Sky get two real quality football people Curbishly and Adonis (the brainbox who left Cristal Palace for the north and stopped in Charlton) to discuss Wengers pricing.

    Wenger in his usual way makes it simple – we do not make our business public till it is complete, but it was more than the number mentioned by Gartside. Cahill will choose long ball English football or tippy tappy Champions League.

    All I can say is everyone will watch the tippy tappy Arsenal and wonder why Wenger is such a genius. It starts at Old Trafford when we will probably beat this 13 man team in style and the FA will have to wonder why their ‘Busacca moments’ were not successful.

    As for Arsenal selling players, why not? They are bringing in some good returns and our squad is still awesome.

  3. The modern professional players are greatly influence by bigger pay package and worse by the scum agent. It is now difficult to retain players of high calibre and loyatly is no more the name of the game. Gone are the “Pat Rice” and “Tony Adams” era.

    Arsenal lucky to have Wenger which shows a distinct business acumen in managing football club unlike our foes in Manchester that gladly trade 100,000 barrels of precious oil for a player.All this in the name of gaining trophies and glory which in my view will not surpass Arsenal rich tradition and history. The destiny and faith of Manc City is yet to be seen and the fall from grace can be horrendous in football historyand will have domino effect alike across the country. They might as well tailor-made some gold trophies of their own and stud it with rubies and diamonds and save te Sheikh 100 millions of pounds.

    Our greatest rival, Manc Utd announce their intend to list in Singapore Stock Exchange all this because they need more fund to buy players andincrease the wages of greedy players like Wayne Rooney.

    Surely, there will be a time when they can take it no more. Just hope that FIFA Financial Fair Play will take a toll on them.


  4. This is it really:

    “You are a selling club when you’re ready to listen to any big offer to any player without the players willingness to stay or not. We haven’t been selling players for the good of the money but for circumstances where the player clearly wants to go or is not required at the club hardly a selling club then.”

    Excellent work Ibrahima. Keep them coming 🙂

  5. Ibrahima Fode NDIAYE… are obviously not a native English language speaker or writer but nice try anyway. I had trouble following your reasoning since the idiom (sounded like Nigerian patois to me) diminished the content a bit. However, if I understood correctly, the basis of your argument is that we sell only those we don’t value,don’t need or who want away for their own personal reasons (cultural, financial, greed, success-trophies,playing time, etc.)and try and keep those we value but, sometimes, without success. That is exactly the case.
    Your second point about AFC being poor at communicating with their fanbase is a valid point and needs further investigation by the Board,Gazidis and the AFC webmasters.
    It seems to be the nature of the Arsenal that we keep everything close to the vest, almost like a strange sort of modesty mixed with a strong dislike for the limelight and a bit of paranoia about the media. Now I wonder why we are like that???
    Afterall, our fans have treated AW, our players and the Board with such great tolerance, respect and patience….NOT! Wenger is a gentleman and very continental, sophisticated and calculating in his introspective approach to all things Arsenal. He NEVER washes our dirty linen in public and NEVER criticizes a player regardless of the fans,media and punditry’s incessant speculations and demands to do so. Our Club paranoia is justified since the British press target ¨Les Frogs¨ in their xenophobic, biased reporting and harassment of anything Arsenal, leaving us to defend our honour in solitude and silence. Their preferred bylines are the ubiquitous references to ¨6 years without a trophy¨ and ¨Arsene Wenger the scrooge¨….

  6. My only issue would be to wonder about, “From qualifying to the champions league at least once every four years as the initial plan was”.

    It would seem that if we are making much more money than we originally planned for, 3 seasons of unplanned CL money is a load of cash, that we would be much more financially capable of competing in the transfer market.

  7. Ok, we’re not a mere selling club. Now to say the obvious: With Cesc, Nasri, CL/win, Clichy sold; Vela and others on loan; and in – only Ox, Jenkinson and Gervinho, we are objectively a buying club. Let’s let that sink in. A potentially unlimited buying club. Now without being called a splash the cash dimwit, we can actually afford to make a few like-for-like “trades” for Cesc, for Nasri for Clichy, IF we wanted to. There’s anywhere between 55 million (minimum) and say 90 or so million to be able to spend (considering Bendtner being on the way and whoever else going on loans, etc.) Would anyone care to venture a wish or two upon this star? I mean it’s like suddenly being free and we’re still locked in a mental box. Anyone wish to dream out loud?

  8. This is a really good article – I always welcome long term, strategic analysis rather than the knee-jerk reactions that infect the web every time Arsenal fail to win.

  9. Another couple of thoughts.

    All those who shout to just pay the extra few million for player X are probably the same people who complain vociferously about the extra few million raised through the ticket price increases. There IS a connection there guys. Surely we should want Wenger and the Board to drive a hard bargain?!

    The other point about how much money there is in the transfer pot is that there is no pot as such. We can spend as much as the banks will lend us. Otherwise, there is a real gain in paying down the stadium debt quickly – the more money we save today, the more we will have to spend tomorrow. What is the point in blowing vast sums to finish a few points better off? Surely we are better off hanging in there in the top 4 while keeping our powder dry until after FFP comes in? If it doesn’t work as we hope then we really have little chance against the financial might of Man C and Chelsea. In fact the only thing that does give us a chance is Wenger’s unparalled ability to spot talent and then develop it to its full potential. Very rarely does a player leave Arsenal and continue to perform at the same level.

    I think it is known as “deferred gratification” – a popular psychological experiment with children.

  10. Bob, I believe you have been reading too much in The Sun?

    First in Anne’s remarkable reprise of The Sun, there is a comment about £60 millions available for Mr Wenger’s transfer budget! This simpleton added the £35 millions for Cesc and £25 millions for Nasri. Complete tripe! Balderdash! Fiddlesticks!

    I believe it was Phil of this parish in article earlier in the year got the profits from the property side “all awry”. The Swiss Ramble picked up Phil’s figure to bolster his transfer budget of £50 millions! In ALL the Financial Reports the profits from the Property side go to the Group ( Arsenal Holdings) and NOT to the transfer budget.

    My personal view is that if the Newton Property sale came to £11 millions, then the Barratt sale will be £13 millions, when it is paid. This money went to clear the bank loan for Ashburton and most likely to pay the interest on the Bonds later in the year!

    Barcelona will I am sure be a slow payer, so no Cesc cash at this moment in time. Clichy £7 millions, JET, Eboué et al, at best £10 millions which will cover Gervinho. quotes Nasri at £24 millions, £3 millions will be for the agents (I am sure this covers Darren Dein too), so I would suggest that £21 millions in The Arsenal bank account by 31st August 2011? With these figure I am ignoring the Value Added Tax, which is due perhaps December 2011?

    My very rough guessestimate (until I see the Financial Report 2010/2011), is £20 millions with £13 millions (€14.5 millions estimated exchange rate, unless the Euros go to the Jersey account of course. So Mr Wenger has around £30 millions to spend on specific targets. Northbanklegend does go into orbit with his calculations £100+ millions and counting!!!!

  11. I say so what if we are selling club? Players come and go this is football. It is in a way to Arsenal’s credit that we have players that top clubs desire desparately, even when they don’t need them. In order for the youth policy to keep flourishing, we will always need to sell players to give others a chance. So long may we continue to be a selling club. Over the years we have lost players because they didn’t think they would get a chance and didn’t want to wait(Aliadiere and Diarra spring to mind).I do agree that we should have better PR and not let media idiots like John Cross form the narrative for the club. Our brand needs better ambassadors than the likes of Paul’incoherent’ Merson or Ian ‘give it a rest’ Wright. I would much rather have the likes of Bob Wilson and Martin Keown be the unofficial mouth pieces for the club, giving interviews and providing the press with exclusive insights to the club.
    I like the fact that today there is a statement about Cahill on I personally don’t rate the player that much compared to the likes of Kyle Bartley for example. If Cahill was amazing he would been snapped up by now. I would’nt be suprised if the truth was that Bolton offered him to us as they need the money. I would hope that we do not offer more than £8m for him as he isn’t worth it. Everton tried to be funny like Bolton is now last year and it is a risky game when the odds are stacked against you. Everton wanted about £10m for Steven Pienaar, but eventually had to sell him for £2.5m when the player had 6 months left on his contract.
    I am genuinely suprised that the Spuds haven’t put in a bid with the likes of injury prone Ledley King and Willam Gallas on their books. It sounds like Bolton are begging via the media for a bidding war to break out. Though this isn’t impossible, I do think that there won’t be many willing to get involved, considering their negotiations might be conducted in public. So when Bolton return to the negotiating table, we should offer them a lot less and Lansbury on loan.
    If I were Cahill’s agent I would be gearing up for a big payday (if Bolton don’t sell him this transfer window), because next year when the player walk’s away from Bolton, he now has the Arsenal seal of approval and can ask for a big signing on fee. I wouldn’t be suprised if Cahill gets an England call up off the back of this publicity too. The only one that is damaged from the fall out is Bolton really. Arsenal aren’t the most media savvy in some aspects, but Bolton are complete media and business novice’s or just truly desparate.

  12. Good point there about not being a selling club. Never thought that way.

    PR/communication needs to be improved as you stated.

    A different point of view well written. Well done.

  13. Arsenal may not be a selling club if you define a selling club as one which has to sell their top players in order to balance the books. However, there is a food chain in club football and Arsenal, while sitting fairly high up that food chain, definitely do not top it. Forgetting the continent and just looking at England, Man Shitty, Chelski and ManUre are willing to significantly outbid and offer much higher wages than us for players of similar calibre. Say what you will about Na$ri but by all accounts he got double what we were willing to offer in salary.

    Look at last years list of the top 100 highest paid footballers and you’ll find 11 players (13 if you count loan players Adebayor and Bellamy) from City, 8 from Chelski, and 9 from ManUre. Arsenal had three–Cesc, Arshavin, and RvP. What this means for the club is that unless Arsenal significantly readjusts its wage outlay, we will always be vulnerable to these clubs tapping up and, if said player’s head is turned, acuiring our players. It’s happened before and it will happen again. I’d be surprised if those clubs aren’t already whispering sweet nothings to Wilshere.

  14. Two good points and how important is it to sign the right sort of players.
    ManU players want to play for them, Sad but true! AW is right to try to get players who love Arsenal. It isn’t always possible, of course, but he has a good nucleus now. The Media are helping to build a a big siege mentality amongst players, staff and fans- and this is good- very good. It should bind us all together and keep us focussed. And remember- you don’t need to tread in dog shit to know it is nasty stuff. Keep clear of it. Don’t buy the papers. Laugh at the gargoyles on Sky Comedy Sports instead (sorry not you Charlie).

  15. Honestly, 6M for Cahill is not exactly a derisory offer since he has only one year left on his contract.

    But when you have just pocketed 25M for Nasri, who was also into the last year of his contract, no wonder the offer will be derided upon!

  16. The Arguement made in this article is very vague….jus bcoz Cesc left bcoz of his barca connections or Nasri left bcoz of bein in his last year, are all inclusive of reasons why we’re a selling club.

    You jus need to see clubs in other countries…they too lose their best players to big european clubs. It might be for several reasons which are all inclusive for being tagged as a selling club.

  17. There is no excuse to beat around the bush. Here is the conclusive proof of why Arsenal are a selling club:

    Compare the sheer number and quality of players who went out against those who came in. You will have your answer. Everything else is just excuses, an art in which our manager excels!

  18. @DarkPrince: Inter just lost Eto’o to that Russian club. They might sell Sneijder too. Does that make them a selling club too then? I think that definition which I commented on above is as close as it gets IMO.

    “You are a selling club when you’re ready to listen to any big offer to any player without the players willingness to stay or not. We haven’t been selling players for the good of the money but for circumstances where the player clearly wants to go or is not required at the club hardly a selling club then.”

  19. I do think there is some misconception in England about how transfers work. Perhaps we’ve been trying to spend money and failing? £6 million for a CB with less than a year on his contract whom no-one else wants is a fair offer. Unless Bolton think he’s the diffetence between staying up and getting relegated, we’ve probably overbid.
    Likewise we could bid £30 million for Torres but we’d nevet have gone to £50 million, he’s just not worth it.

  20. @Woolwich – perhaps there are agents fees, selling-on fees from his former club (Aston Villa).
    This is just speculation on my part, but Arsenal’s offer could be something like 10M rising to 15M based on performance, appearances, etc. So perhaps Villa get 2.5 of that 10, an agent takes another 1M and Bolton only gets 6.5 Million up front.
    What is not nice is Bolton airing this in public. Now what are the odds that Man Utd, Man City, Chelsea, or Tottenham try to hijack our pursuit of the player?

  21. @gooner,

    The link that you have mentioned states that Michael Ballack was bought by arsenal. Calling yourself gooner and then bashing Arsene with these kind of half baked links could backfire, especially in UA.

    Leaving that glaring error, The list of players moving out is big in that list because we are sending many young players on loan every season. Just because there are too many players in “OUT” column does not mean they are sold.

  22. If Cahill wasn’t available on a free next year, his value in the current market would be approximately £15 million depending on who wanted him.
    But he’s running down his contract so any offer they get is worth considering, especially if no other clubs are bidding.

  23. Notoverthehill,
    You can figure what you figure and, in truth, by cherry-picking without open books (unless you have access to the books, as you like to appear to have) really not know any more than The Sun. So really, your excuse for a bad pun to the side, the real figure is equally up thine vault somewhere. If all we can look at from Nasri and x-Cesc and Clichy so far to put back on the pitch is 30M, and that, given the representations made earlier this year about how money is to be put back on the pitch, then something is rotten in the state of Denmark, dear boy. Whatever your snide, all-knowing, accountant’s hubris states to be truth. And, if you knew this were true from reading Anne’s “brilliant” re-posting (love you Anne, but this man’s definition of brilliance is a keystroke too far:), then why didn’t you, in the interests of accountant’s truth, write anything in the comments on your own. If you want to play gotcha with me, I can be just as snide. Does it advance ethics or real understanding? Not that I can see.

  24. Nipuna,
    I fully agree with your sentiment; but if you read notoverthehill’s posting, you will find an all-purpose “authoritative” accountant’s excuse for pleading poverty. You see accountant’s like lawyers are there to defeat the common sense that asks the questions that lead to deeper understandings. Kudos to you for raising your point.

  25. Tee Song,
    Nasri’s head was turned by Patrice Veira – he said so yesterday and it’s in a lot of the so-called newspapers. Not the brightest bulb, our greedy (and in bed with an agent with an old score to settle with Arsense/Boris P.) lad, because it offers Arsenal the proof of player tapping that anyone could ever wish for. But, as you know, 22M will cause anyone not to scream tapping after the fact. (Why we didn’t scream tapping before the fact with x-Cesc requiresanother to-be-fathomed deeper explanation than anything that’s surfaced to date.)

  26. @ Bob
    Nasri’s head was turned by a ton of cash. ManShitty could’ve sent Greedo and Jabba the Hut to coo in his ear and Nasri would’ve said his transfer was about a new galactic order as long as he got the cash.

  27. An incoherent article talking about the ability to fill up Wembley , the PR Dept and Arsenal having the coolest website – all of which are irrelevant to Arsenal being a selling club or not.
    Your entire article could have been condensed into one line – You are a selling club when you’re ready to listen to any big offer to any player without the players willingness to stay or not. As Arsenal do not do that, Arsenal are not a selling Club. Everything else was beating about the bush…
    That reasoning too is not very accurate as a transfer almost always benefits everyone involved…I would like to know any instance wherein the transfer was carried out against the wishes of the player, just because his Club was a ‘selling Club’.
    A disappointing article.
    PS- The Flamini situation did not happen with Nasri because Nasri forced his way out before that could happen…Arsene repeatedly spoke of his desire to keep Nasri at the Club even at the huge loss that would have been incurred due to that.

  28. Sometimes you have to wonder when Arsenal sign a player like Nasri. I believe he was down to his last year on his contract with Marseille when he signed for us. Is it any wonder he did to us what he did to Marseille?
    At least we got a of of cash for him.

  29. Johnny Deigh,
    Good point about thinking that a player won’t do to you what he’s just done to come to your side. We were a bit blinded there by Samir’s boyish innocence.
    Tee Song,
    Yes it’s about the money, but I’d like you to know, as we’re on the topic of betrayals for money, that Patrick Veira – our former icon and now director of player development at ManShitty – was in his ear for months. And Samir said this much yesterday. So deal with those layers as well as it’s all down to money. This makes the character issue that Johnny Deigh brings up very important, to say the least, as a factor in any signing. Also, since there’s no way no know in advance what is truly in our heart of hearts, there’s no real way to guarantee that a young player is not using Arsenal as a stepping stone, as Samir clearly has done. And thanks to Veira for being such a Judas.

  30. From the other side of the coin, here’s what a buying club does: behold Sami reporting to work as our x-Patrick Veira does his cameo turn, slipping out of deep texting, just as his boy passes by, says a few very familiar “c’est va”‘s and immediately jumps back into texting; as Sami then saunters humbly along the golden carpet to greet the club’s Petrol-Fueled Prez who calls him “mate” or some such vernacular sound-byte and offers a manly pat on the back as the door closes behind them, and the to-die-for-executive-secretary beams radiant at the camera as she contemplates the arrival of their spanking new “catch”: (Direct from the coffer$ of Sheik-yer-Booty.)

  31. well Le Prof said he would be clearing out this summer and he has done that, cesc was always gunna leave and samir was in his last year and i dont rate clichy that highly- as whenever he got the ball i always felt he would lose it and the other team would score- therefore you cant say we are a selling club.

  32. I think we should now just offer Bolton some magic beans or mushrooms. Bolton are on something if they think Cahill is worth more than the estimated £6m.

    If we do get Cahill then the other defenders should get a pay rise, as they will have to work a lot harder.

  33. To Narren,
    First the article is all about the arsenal way lacking recognition and defense from the outside because of a bad PR. Arsenal being wrongly called a “selling club” illustrating perfectly that view. I have given you examples where players prefered to stay but went away with KAKA and Drogba. After the transfer decision’s been made off course everyone will look at its interest. To me there are so many great things we should be proud of at Arsenal but got hardly a word for it instead all we hear is about how we are trophyless for six years and are a selling club. Here at untold we demonstrated that Barcelona, Inter Milan have gone through the same trophy very ecently without getting the publicity whereas Liverpool only got an FA cup at 2006 so they are one year behind us and still don’t have this trophyless tag!

  34. @Bob
    I know that PV4 apparently was the point man of ManShitty’s campaign to tap up Nasri. Frankly, who tapped him is far less concerning to me than the fact that Nasri openly admits he was tapped up and there will apparently be no repercussions of that to City.

    My opinion of PV4 really hasn’t changed. Vieira, unlike Na$ri, is an Arsenal legend, one of the true greats who’ve played for the club. But fans tend to forget that in his last three seasons for the club he was linked to other clubs every summer. He eventually forced a move to Juventus and the summer prior to that, a transfer to Real Madrid was supposedly hours from being completed. That the club were prepared to let him go due to the emergence of one Cesc Fabregas made all parties somewhat satisfied at that transfer. Not a lot of fans called Patrick a Judas for that move.

    And now PV4 earns his wages with ManShitty. Whatever he does for them doesn’t tarnish my memories of what he did in an Arsenal jersey. My memories of Patrick Vieira will always be a great player who I had the privilege to watch play for some of the best teams in the history of English football.

  35. Ibrahim,
    I sympathize with you completely but I re-iterate the article was quite incoherent. I understand perfectly well how unique and great a Club this is but then the article should have done more to illustrate all that, if that is what you wanted to do.
    The article started with something, continued about something else and ended on a totally different subject.
    Please understand that I am not saying that the article was bad or the content poor. I am just saying that you have mixed it up too much to pull off in one single article, adding some irrelevant notes – which is very disappointing.
    Better editing should do the job next time.

  36. The spin is all good. But let’s have some facts.

    Below is the list of Arsenal results since March 2011.

    Venue Opposition Score Result Points Dropped
    Home Sunderland 0-0 Draw 2
    Away WBA 2-2 Draw 2
    Home Blackburn Rovers 0-0 Draw 2
    Away Blackpool 3-0 Win 0
    Home Liverpool 1-0 Draw 2
    Away Tottenham Hotspurs 3-3 Draw 2
    Away Bolton Wanderers 1-2 Loss 3
    Home Manchester United 1-0 Win 0
    Away Stoke City 1-3 Loss 3
    Home Aston Villa 1-2 Loss 3
    Away Fulham 2-2 Draw 2
    Away Newcastle 0-0 Draw 2
    Home Liverpool 0-2 Loss 3

    So we have just 2 wins, 4 losses and 7 draws from 13 games since March 2011. We took only 13 points out of available 39 points ie only 33.33%. We’re averaging exactly 1 point per game since last 13 games, which is equivalent to 1/3rd of a season.

    If you look at last season’s premiere league table, only one team finished below 33.33% in terms of point taken – West Ham at 28.95% (33 points in 38 games). Even the two other teams, Birmingham and Blackpool took 34.21% of the available points (39 points out of 38 games).

    Make no mistake. ARSENAL IS SUFFERING RELEGATION FORM since the duration of 13 games or one-third of a season. And what does our great manager does? The defence hasn’t been fixed yet. We have lost the two best players in the team (Cesc and Nasri) who haven’t been replaced (unless you count Alex Oxlade and Miyachi as their adequate replacement). And come January, RvP will be in the annual crocked list while Chamakh, Gervinho (and Song) will be away playing African Nations Cup, so we will once again end up playing the tiny Arshavin as the lone striker in the most physical league in the world. So much for great forward planning.

    Wenger has done some great things in the past, but right now he fiddles like Nero while Rome burns. And why wouldn’t he? There is no dearth of sycophants around him saying everything is hunky dory.

    Any counter-arguments to what I’ve stated above?

  37. Tee Song,
    I respect OUR memories; but life goes on, doesn’t it, and damage in the present is damage in the present.

  38. Naren,
    You probably could elaborate more on your expectations. The article clearly starts with the way Arsenal are protrayed in the media : “unambitious selling club” you can add trophyless too. Then it talked about the way we trie to fight manU (having spent over 35millions pounds b4 2004 and having the biggest wage in the country) prior to the substantiable way with the youth project! Then I talked about some major departs to show that it’s wrong to us a selling club and bemoaned the fact we let the media give the protrait of the club instead of a well organized PR/communication department! I hardly re-read the article I confess that did let to some issues in the linguo but the coherence behind the article is for all to see even if you can legitimately say you couldn’t find it.

  39. @ Naren: I think you’re a bit harsh on Ibrahim. It’s his first article and not all of us are professional writers. You offer some good criticism about how to improve, but saying some parts are disappointing is not very uncouraging for Ibrahim to write more. But please do, Ibrahim, as you made a very valid point that only clubs that are willing to sell their players, regardless of the players wishes, are selling clubs.

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