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July 2021

Unrest at Tottenham: at least it doesn’t just happen at Arsenal

By Tony Attwood

In the week that he might have thought could end with him taking England to the Euros, H. Redknapp Esq. might be forgiven if he is looking over his shoulder.   With one year left on his contract he is said to want three more after that.  Daniel Levy is reluctant, according to press stories.

A while ago I wrote bemoaning the fact that while on Arsenal sites we have a number of people who are very much against the manager (see for background The AAA), at Tottenham everyone is generally quite happy with Mr Redknapp.

The post I wrote produced a fair number of replies from Tottenham supporters, and while many were full of the usual banter (no problem with that of course) there were some who seriously addressed the issue and suggested that there were many fans who were far from happy with their current managers.

This is interesting, because before 2009/10 Tottenham did not often appear in the top four – and yet they have done so twice in the last three seasons.  Indeed as recently as 2004 Tottenham finished 14th in the EPL.  (There is an analysis of the recent comparative positions between Arsenal, Tottenham and Chelsea on the Arsenal History Society blog in case this kind of thing interests you.)

So it is interesting that now there are a few reports hither and yon suggesting that there are concerns not only from supporters of the club but also from within the boardroom.  Of course I haven’t got a clue if this is true or not – I find it hard enough to work out exactly what’s what in terms of Arsenal and what the AAA are thinking, without trying to do the same with Tottenham, but the press are starting to make the point that all is not well near the WHL railway station.   And that is interesting because I always thought that Mr Redknapp was the darling of the press and TV in the way that Mr Wenger never has been.

The fact is that while, as is the nature of football support, Arsenal fans celebrated the disappointment that Tottenham had with Chelsea winning the Champs League, this was hardly Tottenham’s fault, and a move up to 4th, 5th and 4th for the last three years is way above 8th, 11th, 5th for the three years before.

But it seems that, just as many of the AAA want success now at any price, so the Tottenham board might be turning in that direction.  It is indeed the problem of success; any improvement demands another improvement, any win demands another win, until eventually there are just too many teams trying for too few places at the top.

The fact is that Tottenham may have been planning for the Champions’ League – and if that is so it was rather silly, because no one is guaranteed a top four finish – not even Chelsea who have more money to spend than Tottenham.

The point is that Tottenham might have got a lot more money had they got into the Champs League – £30million is quoted in some quarters – and if they were banking on that, then they have a problem.  (It is also incidentally why Arsenal don’t spend everything they have and then some.  Clubs have failed through that arrangement, and Arsenal don’t intend to do that.)

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Plus, at the Tottenham end of 7 Sisters, there is the story that players demand Champs League appearances to enhance their career.  So Luka Modric and Gareth Bale might decide to fly the coop, and others might be less keen on coming (although Mr Adebayor says he wants to make the move permanent and I guess after his stamp on the face of Robin van Persie, most Arsenal fans would suggest that Tottenham are welcome to him.)

Perhaps Tottenham’s problem is the fact that they were almost there – right until March, by which time Mr Redknapp was the favourite to take over England.   He even survived revealing himself to be dyscalculic in his court case – something which fascinated me since my company owns The Dyscalculia Centre.  We were hoping he might come along for an on-line test, but I don’t think he did.  More to the point, he survived losing a 2-0 lead and turning it into a 5-2 defeat, although to be fair he clearly saw it coming, the way he changed the team at half time.

But maybe it was the comments he made after the season was over.   “Top four, I couldn’t be more pleased.  It’s been a great season. We’ve played some fantastic football. We’d love to have finished third, but over the season I don’t think you could ask for a lot more than finishing fourth.”

But in saying that he forgot about his suggestion that the club could come top – although to be fair all managers make claims.  Mr Wenger famously claimed that his team could go the whole season unbeaten, and we then lost the next match, encouraging Man U supporters to bring out an anti-Wenger t-shirt.  I still have mine – it came in handy the following season.

Also there was the problem with Mr Redknapp’s subsequent claims (not so long after say they could win the league) that he didn’t have a deep enough squad to challenge for the league – a comment he made after their defeat to QPR.  That didn’t go down well, because of the fact that he had been manager since 2008 and so should have got that sorted.

What’s more although all managers make bad signings, some of them (such as Bentley) looked really rather silly from the advantage of a historic perspective especially when the club making the profit were Arsenal (who got a lot of dosh from the sell-on clause).

My point here is that Arsenal too have players on their books at all times who have ultimately proved not to be suitable for the first team – every club has loads of them.  The issue is whether they cost a lot of money in the first place.  Pavlyuchenko, Hutton, Kranjcar, Corluka, Palacios… I don’t think there is an equivalent scenario at Arsenal.

Managers have to talk big, but also have to manage expectations, and that is also a problem at all clubs.  And fans of Arsenal and Tottenham are both, it seems, demanding more success.  Tottenham have had 14 managers and 8 caretaker managers since 1984 (and that is counting the dual management they had on four occasions in that period as one each, not two).  So maybe that is the core problem.

If that churn of management is the problem, then it is strange that some people want both Arsenal and Tottenham to change managers now – although Arsenal can hardly be accused of churn since in the same period Arsenal have had four managers and three caretakers.

Perhaps the deepest problem is that only four teams can get into the Champions League which is where all the money is.  And if we look at those lining up, it is clear how tough this is…

  • Man C
  • Man U
  • Arsenal
  • Chelsea


  • Tottenham
  • Liverpool
  • Newcastle

In one sense it doesn’t look tough – there are only three serious contenders who could spend the money and make it up to the next level, and I remain unsure about how much spare money Man U has.  But, it is more than that, because one of the top four has to slip backwards rather than make progress to allow one of the others to step up.

Now Tottenham fans ought to be resting easy because the AAA are certain that Arsenal are in terminal decline.  They cite our “terrible” defensive record and the “gap” between us and the top two.  But then curiously some Tottenham fans cite crises in their club and see decline ahead.  Maybe that should make Liverpool fans happy – except that they ended up closer to relegation than the top of the league last season.

Mr Redknapp has always seemed to me to be a wheeler dealer who can make good deals – although with an unfortunate history in clubs he has left behind going into administration (Bournemouth, West Ham, Portsmouth, Southampton, Portsmouth).  But surely that must all be a coincidence).

So where next?  More Mr Redknapp, or someone new?  And if someone new – is there a lot of money around to buy all the players that are wanted?   That surely is the question, because as Liverpool found out in their negotiations, every new manager wants a big budget.  And the bigger the manager the bigger the budget required.



88 comments to Unrest at Tottenham: at least it doesn’t just happen at Arsenal

  • davspurs

    I like Harry but the notion he can put his arm round players and get respect is way of the mark. The ones he plays every week are okay but reserves and fringe players is where he falls down in my book. We where drawing 1-1 at Villa on the bench was Defoe and Saha he ignored them and settled for a draw and expected the departing Roy to do us a favour he did by playing Clanger Fulop. I dont want Harry to leave but one thing must happen and Harry needs tp rotate our squad more to compete against energy drug cheats the big reason i no why we lost a 10 point lead.

  • SpursMan


    Personally speaking, this is by far the most hair-tearingly difficult question to answer.

    On the one hand, I look at 4th, 5th, 4th and Redknapp’s win percentage (the highest since the war) and think that he deserves more time.

    On the other hand, I consider the inconsistent media messages, his age (which doesn’t bother me in and of itself, but raises the question of how long before he chooses to retire), the slumps we’ve suffered in the last two seasons around February time.

    And so once again, we return to AAAAAAAAAGH!

    I honestly don’t know. Part of me would love to bring in a manager who will be with us long term and who can build a dynasty. But with so many factors to consider, who can any manager build a dynasty unless they keep on winning?

    The only real anomaly to that is, ironically, Monsieur Wenger, who has remained at the helm even though the Arsenal trophy cabinet has been empty for the last seven years.

    I just don’t know.

  • Andy

    A lot of us have various problems with redknapp, but the main one is we just don’t think he can take us any further than 4th at best. That’s why we all wanted him gone for ancelloti or someone a few months ago. He’s just got a lot of important limitations

  • Spurs have the players to compete they proved that for most of last season.
    The difference was a lack of tactical courage at crucial moments particularly at QPR and Aston Villa in the run in.
    Thats why Redknapp finds himself being critised

  • delusion?

    A strange fixation with Tottenham smacks of the little boy whistling in the dark to show he’s not afraid. This obsession with Tottenham suggests a lack of interesting matters at the Emirates. Perhaps some inward reflection on matters arsenal might be a little pinful. It’s man City and they’re off. Whoops only RVP!!!

  • Dave Dufell

    As a Spurs fan i found this a well balanced article and interesting to read!!

  • Rhyle

    It’s human nature to either be pessimistic or optimistic – you’re always going to have different folks exhibiting tendencies to each of those coins. Sometimes the same person will show tendencies to both. In the same sentence….them’s the craaazy folks…

    Spurs fans pessimism comes from throwing away a 13 point lead over their arch-enemies (as they were when they were 2-0 up v us at the Emirates) and then see their 4th place finish rendered meaningless by Chelsea’s CL win. You can’t blame them. Many of those angry at Redknapp blame him for being non-committal during the protracted process of deciding the next England manager and the not too inconspicuous absence of form during it…only for the form to recover when it became clear he wasn’t getting the job. Again…you can kinda see where they’re coming from. Lastly, another reason for their “terminal” decline pessimism may stem from the fact that they came so close only to have it snatched away from them at the death…no wonder they’re questioning whether they’ll ever fulfil their ambition of finishing above us…

    Lastly – and I hesitate to say this AGAIN…being anti-Wenger is not being anti-Arsenal if you believe that’s what’s best for the club. Wishing defeat on Arsenal, or non qualification on Arsenal is anti-Arsenal and I get why you’d label them AAA. Wishing death on Wenger, as some of the more extreme anti-Wenger peeps elsewhere…well, that’s not even human. Even LG recognise that! But I digress…

  • spurs guvnor

    The way you finished off W Brom was imperial, from your tight defence to the silky finishing i bet you lot cant wait to see more of the same next season.

  • tim

    Right, heres why i think redknapp is not wanted by spurs fans and board anymore, we were flying last season, the best football team in the league, due to great players, and good manager, but then redknapp gets a court hearing, and this ordeal tears him apart inside, mentally and physically, he says stupid revealing statements, in the hearing, and then he breaks down, from mental exhaustion, and when hes cleared of all charges, who comes banging on his door, the f.a clowns, and they start all this harry for england crap, and he says nothing to us, to let us know whats going on, he just covered up, except his match interviews stating, he is concentrating on the spurs job, and not even thinking of the england job, but look at the performances since that day, our players were not performing, our manager looked inept, and we lost so many games in this period, and as for you beating us when we were 0-2 up, im surprised it took you so long to beat us, we had a walking central defender king, and by the side of him, assou ekotto, who wanders off up front, leaving his position, and who is on the wing on that side for you, speedy walcott, he had a field day, he attacked king constantly, and ripped him apart, and then you scored goal after goal, thats a management error, he played poor ledley, from the start, who was not fit enough, (he doesnt train) he did not make assou stay back, we were 0-2 up , yet we still went at you, leaving ourselves exposed, with our weak defence, now this was all the managers doing, muddle headed, inept, no tactical sense, you name it, but he messed up big, with the spurs fans, and the board are not happy either.

  • Spurspañol

    As a Spurs fan, I don’t think the majority of us want a change in management. Harry can cause you to pull your head out with some of his comments but overall, he’s brought the good times back to our club, and more importantly, given us belief.

    The minority, and it is a minority, are mainly based on internet blogs (Harry Hotspur is a prime example) and they, of course, have experience and can run a football club, train a team and play through an entire season of FM unbeaten. They are idiots. The same idiots that, if, get their wish and Harry moves on will get crying as we reach the final of the League Cup (only to lose) and manage 9th in the table, citing injuries as the reason.

    Then Bale, Modric and VdV would leave.

    Keep things as they are. The Premier League generally shows that consistancy produces the best results and with Harry (4th, 5th, 4th) we’re in the right part of the table, fighting with the “bigger” (financially) clubs. If we keep the same group together, clear some of the deadwood, and add one or two quality players then we should be there or thereabouts again.

  • Dubspur

    Look at Pienaar play for Everton, Dos Santos for Mexico, Boateng for Milan. That’s why Harry has to go.

  • joelio

    I’m not a spurs fan, but I think its interesting that they are growing tired of Redknapp too. Had the Qataris not bought Man City, Spurs would surely have supplanted Liverpool in England’s perennial “Big 4.” As you point out, they were nowhere near that level before Redknapp took over. Tim makes some good points about Redknapp’s poor decisions in the spring, but you have to think few years will be as mentally exhausting as this one, he most likely wont have to face another court case or the prospect of the England job just months before a major tournament. There’s good reason to think next year will be better for him and Spurs, and that they can fulfill their ambitions next season.

    By contrast, is there really a good reason to think Wenger can deliver a trophy in the future? Wenger’s Arsenal has the same problems every year, and we were unbelievably lucky to finish where we did. I agree that wishing defeat for Arsenal in order to remove Wenger is a step too far, but I don’t think it does any good to ignore our problems and “get behind the team.” We aren’t paid by the club to be cheerleaders. In fact its the opposite. We pay them. The highest ticket prices in the league I might add.

    Wenger hasn’t done enough to solve our problems for years. So its completely logical to support Arsenal but not Wenger, all you need to do is reach the conclusion that Wenger is the problem holding the team back. Kind of like Almunia was for years. We improved when we stopped playing Almunia. We will improve if we find a new manager.

  • Dutchie

    I think the Spursfans who want Harry to leave, are right. He is better manager then Jol and Ramos, but who isn’t? Under Ramos and Jol the teams full potential wasn’t used, and now under Redknapp it happens again.

    They have the 3th, 4th or 5th best midfield in the world, with Real Madrid and Barcelona ahead of them while you could argue about Juventus and Manchester City. But with the injury of Van der Vaart, Redknapp changed his formation to a flat 4-4-2 despite having Krancjar on the bench (who is, believe me on that, better then all our midfielder a part from Wilshere). So then Parker and Modric where outnumbererd against all the oponents. In stead of changing the formation back to a 4-3-3 Redknapp started to put Modric wide on the left, and even when Van der Vaart came back, he hold on to his flat 4-4-2. He played Van der Vaart, known of his lack of stamina(brilliant player though) on the right wing.

    These are mistakes a random dutch coach would not make. Remember when Spurs trashed Newcastle 5-0… that was because Pardew played 2 man in the middle while spurs had 3. But after that he didn’t make the same mistake anymore.

    Redknapp also plays his best 11 all the time. He never rotates so at the end of the season Modric was completely exhausted (lost his form after Redknapp played him wide on the left for one game). He cries about the lack of depth in his squad but that’s absolute rubbish. He is the one who let Pienaar and Pavluchenko go in the middle of the season. When you have players like Pienaar, Defoe, Pavluchenko and Krancjar on the bench you can easily rotate. But in stead he sold Pavluchenko, let Pienaar go to Everton and refused to play Krancjar despite his solid performances in the games he played.

    And why do you think all his former clubs are in administration? He always uses the same tactics. Buys old players with expensive longterm contracts, then leaves, while the club is stuck with an enourmous wage budget without having quality on the pitch. He let Bassong go, and got some grandpa from Blackburn in stead.

    So he is tacticly very very bad and also has a bad transfer policy. Maybe he is a nice guy, but that’s not enough to challenge for the title.

    Now Tottenham surely is in a decline. This season was their only chance for the upcomming period. A do or die season. They had a very good squad with a relatively low wagebudget. Something that won’t last forever. The best players want CL football and with the money they receive for them, they won’t get the same quallity. They probably will get less skilled players with higher salaries, or talented but very young players. One way or another, they will get into a decline… especially when your competors can buy a new team every year.

  • The term AAA makes no sense to me, why would any arsenal supporter be anti arsenal, and why should anyone who wants a change in management be anti arsenal??

  • Joshua

    So there are short-sighted, glory hunting and ever so dim fans at every club? Welcome to the real world Tony. If you ask me, which you haven’t but nevertheless… Arsenal, Liverpool and Spurs have the largest cohort of deluded fans in the league. In my humble opinion Wenger’s problem is that he brought Arsenal success, and loads of it, on a shoe-string budget earlier on when all he had to worry about was the financial might of Manchester United… so now some of our fans imagine that such success is theirs by right irrespective of how much the club has to spend in contrast to rivals like city and ignoring the 400m outlay that went into building our stadium. Yet these people trot out the 7 years no trophy garbage as if it is some deep truth. No context no thought, no analysis just silly slogans.

    The people who make laugh the loudest are those who purport to be financial experts who tell us that Arsenal can afford to spend another 100m on players… quite how they know this I have no idea but that’s the GLORY of the internet for you… Every Tom, Dick and Harry (no offence Spurs fans) can now pretend to be Alex Ferguson’s superior on the internet. They all know who the club should buy and for how much… they also know who we should sell and how much we ought to get for them and they know all this from playing Championship manager and watching highlights of players on You-tube.

    It’s the new world, I guess, where idiotic opinions can gain salience by virtue of their volume not the sense they contain. Some Spurs fans want Capello? How daft is that… you get Capello and you give him what budget?? Be grateful for Harry and what he’s given you. For all his faults Harry has revived Spurs as a force in the EPL. Spurs play some good football and have bought well and have some very good players. Support your team and manager… or you can whinge, moan and bleat and end up with the same poisonous nonsense that Arsenal are having to deal with…

  • tim

    Sorry dutchie, but you are wrong, we are not in decline, as you hope, we are growing, and getting better all the time, yes we have had a bad end to last season, due to them idiots in the f.a, and redknapp dithering around, like a confused man, not able to sort out his thinking, but we hope redknapp does stay, but only if his sorts himself out, of his fundemental mistakes, we loved redknapp, and we could love him again, but he must show more than what he did.

  • tim

    his is wrong meant he, just typed too fast.

  • Shard

    Wow.. Good to see some Spurs fans come on here and actually not a single troll or idiot among them, and even a ‘conspiracy theorist’ (that’s a compliment by the way). Was there some cosmic disturbance that meant we’ve entered the twilight zone? 🙂

    Harry Redknapp. If I’m perfectly honest, I can’t stand the guy. But as Spurs are competitors, I also hope he stays at Spurs. He isn’t really much good, despite how often he and his media pals say so, and his record in bankrupting every club he’s been at says a lot. He always seems to buy a lot and sell a lot doesn’t he? Not only does that exhibit a lack of understanding of how to go about building a team, since it’s all hit and miss.. It also, in my opinion, is entirely consistent with someone who’s shouting “cowaBUNGa Dude”, all the way to the Bank in Monaco that he forgot about.

  • Shard

    Dutchie..I disagree with you too, but not on the same account as tim here.. I think Martin Jol was good for Spurs. Two 5th place finishes at that time, I think he probably deserved more time, and I think he could have delivered them CL. I was very surprised when they sacked him. He’s done well for himself since then, and I think he’s doing a fair job at Fulham too.

  • Scott

    Spurs problem right now is will Bale and Modric want to hang around for another season,without CL football.
    I don’t pretend to know anything of Spurs financial situation,and am only getting info on the net,but they need a centre back,have one of seemingly very,very good quality crying out to come to them,yet for some reason won’t cough up the extra for him.
    Is there more to it??

  • GoingGoingGooner

    My impression is that Mr. Redknapp is a good motivator. Tactically, he seems to be average but that is a critique that has been levelled at Mr. Wenger, too. Spurs is a good side and I expect them to be in the mix next year as long as they keep there main players and avoid a lot of injuries. This is the same as any team. I do not know if their fans are as split as the Arsenal fans are. The difference was that we bottomed out in the first month or so and then in January whilst Spurs waited until the last two months. We are feeling OK about our season though still not satisfied and Spurs are feeling deflated though they only finished a point behind us. Of course they got screwed over by that silly UEFA rule that Liverpool got instituted. Over 38 games they were superior to Chelsea. They should have got the 4th England spot.

  • Scott

    Ggg,no fans in the history of sport have been divided like those of Arsenal.

  • Mahdain

    @Joshua very nice comment..wish there was a like button

  • Scott

    And Joshua,I agree with Mahdain!
    It defies logic that some Arsenal supporters spend all their time actually criticising the club……I still want someone to explain exactly how that works.
    You’re either a supporter or you aren’t,and true supporters will always be supportive……

  • Mahdain

    @Scott agree our fanbase is the most divided of the lot..i can testify to that cos being on twitter i have witnessed/been part of those many arguments and really saddens me what our fanbase has become thanks to idiotic wannabe fm/fifa manager and the vile misinformation spread by the likes of le grove and Tim Payton and his AST

  • kols

    i think we should get in a new manager. every harry lover says we (harry bashers) are idiots. but look at what redknapp does. he DONT distance himself from the england job(“no, i dont want that, i am happy at spurs”,easy i could say it, why not redknapp), and the team falls apart. this is the same manager that spurs and levy supported through his trial, in papers,and online. redknapp did not show spurs and the fans the same during that england farce. and now i hear that he has threthened? to leave for dubai if the board dont back him up!!!??? we could and i think should have sacked him, during his trial. but then all the media whores(redknapp loving jurnos) would have cryed for levys blood. but it is just the natural order of things if redknapp is unloyal in the media, telling he understands the modric will play for chelsea?? “they always compete, and win stuff, so yeahh i understand him. he is just a teriffic lad”. now tell me why do i want that jackass as manager???

  • kols

    oh i did forgott, great read. from a spurs fan.

  • Rhyle

    “true supporters” want what’s best for the club…regardless of what they believe that to be, they still want what they believe to be the best for Arsenal. Rarely will 60,000 people agree what that looks like. I’ll always support the team on the pitch. You won’t have heard me booing Eboue, for example. However, if I don’t agree with the way that the team I love and supported for my entire life, I’m going to speak up. You don’t have to agree with me, just don’t call me anything other than a “true supporter”. I’ve been a season ticket holder for most of my life (bar 7 years in the RAF) and put my money where my mouth is…and would do so if we did decline and fall to relegation or embarrassment. I’m an Arsenal fan, an Arsenal supporter. Don’t confuse my lack of faith in Wenger as anything but that – and the same can go for Spurs fans who’ve fallen out of love with Twitchy Harry…if they think the club is best served by him going it doesn’t make them disloyal to the club…just Harry Redknapp…

  • Adam

    Spurs could possibly benefit from taking Arsenals approach and allow Bale & Modric to leave, Cash in while they still hold long term contracts. Arsenal survived Cesc’s & Nasri’s departure, we never mention Clichy? No reason why Spurs could not benefit from the financial boost.

  • Domhuaille MacMathghamhna

    Personally I like the football Spuds play but find that ‘ Arry is NOT anywhere near Wenger’s ability or overall Football mastery nor is he a class act and a gentleman like Arsene. As one blogger wrote, he showed his true character(or lack of it) at his trial for tax evasion. At the same time he also showed disloyalty to the Totts and an indifference to their form and ambitions, while promoting his own ambitious and selfish agenda. This is the same he did at every other club he sunk. Now that he couldn’t get the plum as England manager, he says he always wanted to remain at Spurs but he may have burnt one too many bridges with his on again/off again behaviour and treatment of WHL.

  • Rhyle

    I just want to draw a line in the sand as to what I perceive is a misunderstanding of what a “true supporter” is…

    Someone who cares deeply for the club and wants what’s best for it. You could be on completely opposite sides of the fence to each other, as we are, but you feel your perspective is WHAT WILL BENEFIT THE CLUB is what matters – both are pro-Arsenal.

    A reactionary, on either side of the fence who accepts bad management (8-2 at OT before spending money? Complacency, as an example…and an opinion – I appreciate there are many here who won’t drink my particular brand of Kool-Aid…) (your side, Scott) or wishes defeat, non-qualification or other bad things to befall the team (the true AAA side) are both as bad as each other.

    And, with that, never let us discuss this matter again…lol…

  • tim

    bale loves it at spurs, modric, who knows, and this is the one that wrankles the spurs fans, harry redknapp says we dont like the 442 system, and what does he do, he plays 442, how do you explain that, cant be thinking right surely.

  • Dutchie

    @ GoingGoingGooner

    Anyone who thinks Arsene Wenger is average tactically, is stupid. He got the most out of every team he managed. Believe me, tactically he is superior to Mourinho and Ferguson.

    All managers make wrong choices, but the difference is, Wenger doesn’t have the players to save him. You can do everything wrong but if you have Özil, Ronaldo, Benzema, Di Maria and Xabi Alonso… while having Higuain, Kaka and Marcelo on the bench, you will still win most of the games. Mourinho made many mistakes with Real Madrid, believe me, but the quality of his players save him.

    How many games did Arsenal loss when Van Persie and Cesc played together? 3? 2? I remember Man City, but they had 4 shots and 4 goals we had 20 chances or so. We even beat Barcelona, while playing an attacking game.

    It’s no coincidence that almost all players who leave Arsenal seem average at their new club.

  • hoopspur

    Thanks for the opportunity to write something without being slagged off.

    Problem is we are in a position where as some of the threads above have said, we are not sure whether our current manager can take us further.

    Problem is with Arsenal is we (collective – you an us) are not sure whether he can take you further.

    Do we stick or twist? Stick with what we have, knowing we’ve not been the great, and waiting for you to fail, or, push, get rid of HR in the hope we can take you.

    Decisions, dilemmas, d-days!

  • hoopspur

    Sorry, just read that back and I sound pissed. The sentiment is right – the language, not.

  • tim

    arsene wenger,is a very good manager, and harry redknapp was a great motivator.
    we will still play attacking stylish football no matter who manages us, because thats our style, i have heard from rumours, that spurs are thinking of guardiola, in a years time, thats why they have only offered redknapp a one year deal, and going by what pep is looking for in his next team, we fit the bill, and you would also, peps friend said that he would only go to a club, that is right for his image, and pep is known for being a gentleman, and well liked all over europe, thats why i dont think he would go to a sugardaddy club, that buys glory, because his image worldwide would change to a lot of people, and he would not like that.
    we would both fit the bill, being very big clubs, and running our clubs from our own finances, within our means.
    he wants to go to well run club, not a monopoly money team.

  • tim

    If arsene wenger took over as spurs manager, he would get us to the next higher level, i have no doubt, and thats what spurs fans want, a manager of similar ability.

  • Sammy The Snake

    Harry is like a sugar rush, great immediate effect and then nothing after that! He’s had good short term result followed by a crash in every club, and in most seasons. I can see why Spurs fans would want him out, he’s just about to press cruise control on his latest crash landing…

    Nice to see a cordial and constructive discussion between fans of the seven sisters road clubs! Another great result by Tony!

  • Although it is inevitable that on the odd occasion when Untold does publish an article about Tottenham there are always a few people who come out with the line about how any article here on Arsenal’s oldest rivals shows a “fixation”, I am delighted that we can, on occasion, have an interaction that moves above the “you’re shit” debate level.

    Thanks to everyone who is taking part.

  • Joshua wins the ‘best reply’ award.

    Great post Mr Attwood.

  • Spurspañol

    I speak on behalf on most sensible (am I?) Spurs fans and say that if the article is well written with arguments on both sides instead of “lol spurs are shit!!!111!!”/”mind the gap spuds loool!” you will attract a better reaction. Unfortunately most – on both sides – are the later.

    I repeat that I don’t want Harry out, but I think next season is very, very important for him and for Spurs. A poor start and he’ll be out the door (I can see it now, sadly) and our first choices to replace him are now at other clubs, so who do we go for? Pleat as caretaker? Like anyone in World football I’d jump at the chance of getting Pep, but do you really think, when he can choose anyone he’d like, that he’d choose Spurs?

    We are doing things the right way (much like Arsenal have/are) but we still need a new stadium (on the way) and that severly effects the budget once the wheels are truly in motion. So whoever comes in basically has to make do with what we have, spend very little, and make sure we get back and stay in the CL places. No easy task with the resources available at other teams in the PL.

    So, yeah, I don’t think Harry will go in the summer but I think he needs to be backed this summer (one year extension and healthy budget) and let’s see how things go next season. If it doesn’t work out, then call Pep.. (haha) .. or Jose! 😉

  • Scott

    Rhyle,how about this…don’t discuss anything with me again,smart arse.
    The last two days have been a total waste of everyone’s time,and it coincides with you “enlightening us” with exactly what’s wrong with everything Arsenal.
    You’re as much a true supporter as you are staunch……youre a fraud.
    Say what you like,but keep me and my name out of it,and I shall do the same.
    I hope you don’t drag this site down to the lows of our normal shithole,Le Grove.
    Tony,Walter,Dogface,this is my last post on this prick,let him have his come back,I’ll leave it alone,and then tell him to keep his distance…the stench is overpowering.
    Oh,and save this site,don’t let the pricks win!!!
    Enough,and I’m serious.

  • Scott

    Spurspanol,do you think there is a danger of Modric and Bale leaving??
    Is there any word about??

  • Paxton

    Good debate on here ! As a Spurs fan of over 40 years I can honestly say that some people have very short memories. The last 3 seasons have been the best in years in terms of finishing place and also style of football. have to agree that tactically HR gets it wrong sometimes but also even the opposing fans of North London would probably agree that when playing us nowadays it is not quite the forgone conclusion of a few seasons ago as to the outcome…. Biggest if is ok HR goes who replaces him and at what cost ? I here lots of calls for a replacement but not many names in the frame to take over .. AVB ? Martinez ? for those of you in those camps think one Juande Ramos …

  • Spurspañol

    @Scott I’m 100% sure that Bale will stay. He knows he wasn’t as effective last season and is still developing, his time at the top (either with Spurs or elsewhere) will come. As for Modric, he splits opinions.. I think he is an important part of our team but he doesn’t get enough goals and our poor run of form coincided with his. If we could get 35M for him, I’d sell him. His heart isn’t at Spurs.

    Sandro and Parker can do the job in the centre, Lennon and Bale on the wings with VdV supporting (hopefully) Ade.

  • Scott

    Fair enough.
    Do you think Utd are in for him again??

  • Rhyle

    Typical Scott…having a go at me without backing anything up. For some reason you seem to be taking every opportunity to have a pop, yet when I have a go back you absolutely lose it…back up why I’m wrong about what I say about a true supporter…YOU CAN’T…you just make weird comments about being a fraud and expect no comeback? You’re the one who’s kept the argument going at every opportunity…your digs on the Kroenke thread, for example, whereas I’ve at least tried to move and add to discussions you seem to have NOTHING OF INTEREST OR VALUE TO ADD…you’re a strange little mind / man and no mistake…

  • Rhyle

    I’ve not tried to enlighten anyone on what’s wrong with Arsenal, by the by, I’ve only challenged the use of AAA and anyone who uses as a catch all to try and argue why my anti-Wenger stance is ill founded with solid reasoning. I’ve not expected anyone to agree with me at all, just at least point out why anti-Wenger = anti-Arsenal sensibly.

    That is all, but it would take reading what I’ve written, which does seem beyond you.

  • Matt Clarke

    I wonder, sometimes, if the manager reflects the personality of the supporters? LFC and NUFC fans certainly seem to be blinded by their love of former players.

    Do Spurs fans like Harry the Man (rather than just the Manager)?

    And, with so many other uncertainties for them this summer (stadium, LK, GB) do they really want more upset?

  • shannon

    An interesting article.

  • Rhyle

    Matt…father in law is a Spurs fan. Really rates Harry the manager, but not Harry the man, funnily enough! His point being that he’s not afraid of making a tactical change early in the game if needed and has built on the work delivered by Jol before him. Until Jol / Redknapp I don’t think Spurs had finished in the top 7 or bottom 7 of the PL? No denying he’s moved them on…CL for the first time was a fantastic result for them, particularly in light of who they were competing for that spot with…

    As for LFC and NUFC, think they’re very nostalgic for the good ole’ days…not just blinded by former players (they are) but by former glories…how else could you condone the appointment of Kenny Dalglish – a manager who’d failed at every club since the mid-90’s?

  • Rhyle

    As you’re entertaining visitors…I’d keen to see how many of them want Spurs to sign Adebayor? Seems a pretty divisive issue with a 50:50 split yes and no…

  • The issue of the stadium has been brought up – it is one we have covered on this site once or twice – and it is a major issue in the future of Tottenham I think.

    Arsenal had good and back luck with their stadium – the old site could be sold for housing at a premium, so that helped, but house prices collapsed at the wrong moment, so that didn’t.

    But I do believe the income from the apartments and other developments now continuing around the stadium are of great benefit to Arsenal – although there is no doubt that money was in short supply at the start, and Arsenal did indeed run the club for a while on a shoestring.

    But Arsenal now do have the things that top players look for when considering where to move to – great stadium, great training ground, manager of renown, Champions League football for 15 years.

    Tottenham have the training facilities, and a manager of a considerable profile, but don’t yet have the ground, and unless (and obviously just my opinion) they are very lucky with the finance they might expect to see the building of the ground restrict their ability to take risks in the transfer market.

    As a season ticket holder at Arsenal I have come to accept the stadium – but away trips constantly remind me how lucky we are to have this as a place to watch football, and how lucky we are to be emerging from the financial restrictions it has imposed on the club. At Tottenham, thoughts about the financing of the stadium must be affecting the willingness of the directors and banks to enter into huge borrowing for players.

    And, to return to the issue of Mr Redknapp, that can’t be impressing him. Indeed maybe we were already seeing a spot of this when he spoke about the lack of depth in the squad.

  • Ugandan Goon

    Interesting take on spur’s problems from some of their fans, most of the ones i know, after the inevitable climb down are at least clear sighted enough to recognize that although harry may be responsible for the teams efforts on the pitch, they must look at the wholesale transfer out of players last season, and also look at the ‘harry for England’ headlines as positive PR for a man looking to pervert the course of justice, i dont think ‘arry was seriously, was there a juror in that trial who didn’t imbibe the guff that was printed in the Murdoch press about how this man was the best for the job. but i’ll leave that to lord levenson.
    To a gooners mind, the end of season capitulation is something we take an almost scientific detachment from, we know the signs all too well,to many injuries, too many games, the players just hit a wall, £80,000 a week doesn’t make them machines, the tank is empty, all is kaput.
    The toad harry, got away with murder (or money laundering aided and abetted by dear old rosie), his employers may or may not take the view that fourth wasn’t bad considering the budget he did it on ( i.e minus pavlyuchenko, bassong and a few other’s wages)and he is capable of managing the squad through what i suspect will be shifting down of the transfer budget gears. he doesn’t buy the players after all, a useful idiot to do a job,just as long as he doesn’t go all dalgleish on their asses and drag the club to levels of disrepute previously the environs of the great offices of state and the MET.

  • Spurspañol

    @Scott I am sure that United are sniffing, as they like to poach our better players (much like City are doing to your lot) but I can’t see it happening. I think Levy would prefer, if Modric was to leave, that it would be to a team outside the PL – even if we lost a bit of money in the deal.

    @Tony I think, as I brought the issue up, the stadium is a big problem. We need to borrow money at a time when no one is lending. We can’t base it off constant CL appearances (or at least regular ones) as we have no proof that it’ll happen, or is likely. Once in recent history! We have the base of a very good, solid, young team. But we need to match their ambition and every year they will want (and expect) the team to improve with bigger names.

    I think the situation with RVP is similar. He likes Arsenal, believes he can achieve most things with the team, but doesn’t see the commitment of bringing in recognised, world-class performers – always “ones for the future” and unfortunately modern football doesn’t give a fuck about the future, only the present.

    Levy is a very smart guy however and he wouldn’t start building a stadium if it wasn’t possible. So if the work starts and everything gets the go ahead then I trust him completely. But when that building work starts the manager in charge, whoever that is, needs to breed that confidence and belief into the squad we have and maintain the egos without spending 15M+ for 5-6 years. We’ll see.

  • Ugandan Goon

    The man man be dyscalculic, but even he must know that if the champions league mugs that were retailing for a fiver, until Chelsea spoiled the party, were going for a paaaaand until a couple of days ago and are now probably part of a big ceramic mound in an industrial estate in china.
    No more triffic little players, no more gifts from liverpool, the best defender in the league (king) has been released. the real work starts now or not as the case may be.

  • Scott

    Good comments again.
    Unfortunately,most or at least plenty of football fans don’t care about the future either.
    Everyone wants trophies now.

  • tim

    I would get glenn hoddle back at spurs, he is a great manager, and the reason it did not work first time around, our players were not good enough for what he was trying to show them, in other words, the players were being shown up with what glenn was trying to show them, he was doing things and outplaying them, in training, and they could not play like that, and it frustrated the players, and annoyed the manager, but glenn was special, he was in the zidane class.
    Now if he came back with our current squad, he could do a great job, and i dont think the players would be intimidated as the players before, so i say, get glenn back.

  • Notoverthehill

    Mr Attwood, very well done. A good response from even those on the wrong side of Tottenham.

    As for Mr Redknapp, the court case proved beyond any doubt that he is unfit to be an EPL manager. Every newspaper printed the Redknapp evidence given under oath, verbatim.

    Redknapp was cleared of conspiring with Mandaric, to avoid tax on the deposits to the Redknapp “secret” bank account. Redknapp admitted that he did not reveal the bank account, until he was forced to.

    It is very understandable, that Mr Levy and Mr Joe Lewis, are not best pleased.

  • Shard


    I never saw Glenn Hoddle play, but I can believe he was good because Arsene Wenger took him to Monaco 🙂

  • Scott

    Tim,I’d just say that a top manager will work to get the best out of the players he has.
    It’s exactly the reason AVB failed at Chelsea.
    Everyone makes out Di Matteo is a great manager,but everyone knew what needed to be done,he just did it….let the players play to their strengths.

  • Scott

    He was very,very good Shard.

  • Scott

    He was very,very good Shard.

  • Scott

    The second post was to emphasis it lol….

  • Shard


    regarding AVB..I think he had a different mandate. I’m pretty sure his job was to freshen them up and get them playing some decent football. His goal was oriented more to the longer term than the short term. And it would most likely not have been as bad as it was even in the short term(although AVB I think had more points per game in the EPL than Di Matteo did) if the players there weren’t such prima donnas and were forced to have some professional pride rather than throw a tantrum when something was not to their liking. Chelsea’s problems had very little to do with AVB, and Chelsea’s success had very little to do with Di Matteo.. (All my opinion of course)

  • Shard


    If you repeat yourself so… I believe you 🙂

  • Scott

    Shard,I don’t blame AVB for one second.
    I have no doubt he was brought in to rejuvenate the squad and style.
    I probably didn’t clarify myself,but no,he’s not to blame.
    Their idiot owner is the biggest fool on the planet.
    Unfortunately,he’s one of the wealthiest.
    I watched Hulk play today for Brazil v Mexico,and they can have him.
    He will not be able to bully PL defenders,and he certainly won’t turn past them……slow to me,and ALL left footed.
    The Mexicans showed him his right foot and just as off him…very predictable indeed.
    Whoever their manager is,he may not have the easiest of times.
    How are Terry and the likes going to handle Hazard….love to be a fly on the wall.

  • Shard

    Yeah..I’ve never been overly impressed by Hulk when he played against us for Porto.

    Lol.. Probably Terry will try to give the new signings a wedgie or something, and throw spitwads at them. They’ll probably have to accept that and hire private detectives to keep 24 hour surveillance on their girlfriends. Nothing that 200,000 pounds a week can’t buy of course so it’s all good.

  • Scott

    Him and Torres up front….on paper,and reputation,a bloody scary thought.
    In reality….not so much.

  • insideright

    In the short term Arsenal and Spurs share the same problem – there are three clubs who have a great deal more money to spend than they do. One has it because they have had a much bigger stadium for a very long time and the other two because they are subsidised. If and when those subsidies become ‘illegal’ then we shall see the wood for the trees.
    In the meantime forget the managers and look at the relative successes of the two North London clubs under very different board level strategies.
    Arsenal have always thought long term both in terms of youth and stadium development. Spurs have done the opposite. Their stadium remains virtually the same since they worked with Arsenal (and Man Utd., Liverpool and Everton) to form the EPL. Their youth development programme has produced no more than a handful of really successful players in the last 40 years. Hoddle, Campbell…help me here.
    Arsenal, right from the start understood the implications of running a football business in the new era and were brave enough to build their current stadium – having upgraded their training facilities many years previously. The youth policy has produced many more players than Spurs – many have had long careers at the top, either with Arsenal or somewhere else and produced significant transfer income to the Club when they moved elsewhere.
    Revenue? Trophies? The facts speak for themselves if you want to compare the outcomes of the two contrasting policies over the decades.
    In the end it cannot be denied that Spurs have gone much more down the route of trying to buy success on the market without having enough income to maintain it year in and year out and often not being able to hold on to their best players when other (richer) clubs, especially Man Utd. came knocking.
    Arsenal recently have had the same problem with Man City but have, on balance, stayed on an even keel or indeed improved thanks to astonishingly good management.
    You pays your money and you takes your choice between two clubs run on surprisingly different lines with surprisingly different (long term) outcomes.

  • mike collins

    Great post and some very thoughtful replies
    I do smile when people talk about being deluded, Even supporting a team through thick and mainly thin is an exercise in delusion.

  • Scott

    Exactly right Mike.

  • Spurspañol

    I don’t think anyone is arguing who is the more successful of the two teams or who has been better managed. Unfortunately Spurs have had to deal with a lot of bad owners and if it wasn’t for Sir Alan, we’d probably be in League One now called Hotspur FC. Since Levy and Lewis came in, we’ve managed to steady the ship with finances and relative success (improvement on league positions, reaching the CL for the first time; baby steps).

    The problem for Spurs are the like, much as is happening at Arsenal, a lot of fans don’t care about a young player who in five years could be a superstar. Apart from the Ox, there isn’t anyone who came through your youth set-up (really) who is exciting to watch.

    Spurs needed to raise 5-6 places from their usual 10-11th place finishes. We bought “rough diamonds” who maybe the elite teams weren’t convinced of, but we gave them the stage to showcase their talents. They improved the entertainment level of Spurs but more often than not didn’t get us to where we wanted (Champions League) so were sold on for big profits while we searched for a better option.

    Spurs and every other team apart from Arsenal, Liverpool and at times United are based on the here and now. If Spurs had a few injuries and the young signings weren’t ready and say we finished 9th – heads would roll. Football, now, is based on securing CL money first and foremost and after that building towards challenging for the title. And the benefits to budding your own stars are worthless – they usually want to play before their time, leave when their contract is up, and you receive about 2M in compensation for 4-5 years training.

    Souleymane Coulibaly will be a superstar though and Caulker isn’t shaping up bad either (you forgot King in your list too).

    And if Spurs want a new stadium, we need CL, so our focus of signings won’t be for two years time, it’ll be for right now. Arsenal’s policy, although admiral, doesn’t work in the current climate. Only Barca have such a well-developed youth academy and coaching. And Barca are no ordinary team. When you are secure in your position in the Prem, you can ease the spending – but with City and Chelsea with endless amounts of money and United being United: it’s between ourselves, your lot, Newscastle and (maybe) Liverpool for that last spot (and by last I don’t mean 4th, but you expect the other 3 to be in the Top Four). Can anyone be sure it’s theirs next season?

  • insideright

    There are many players in the current Arsenal first team squad who have been developed through the youth set-up (some coming from abroad in the first place) and these include Wilshere who was last season rated by many observers as the most exciting prospect in England. Keiron Gibbs may well be one place away from being in the England squad at the Euros. An Arsenal produced left back will, of course, play.
    In the past England have had many Arsenal produced players to call on including Adams, Rix, Rocastle, Thomas, Davis, Merson, Bentley (remember him?)Radford,Kennedy,Storey…the list goes on.
    The point I’m making is that, even going back decades, Spurs have nothing like such a long list and have pinned the vast majority of their hopes on dealing in the transfer market which has proved expensive, hit and miss and, in the end, not in their power to maintain at a sufficient level.
    As FFP kicks in you don’t hear anyone say that the way forward is to ‘adopt the Spurs model’. On and off the pitch Arsenal have set the standards in long term planning and development and you can only draw the conclusion that Spurs have suffered from mismanagement decade in and decade out.
    Maybe it’s because they don’t want to be seen to be copying Arsenal that has taken them down a route which is far less sustainable given their income.
    The Arsenal model has kept us at or near the top for many many years and it’s long term consistency that wins the race in the end not short term. panic buying – a policy which anyone can utilise and, against real wealth, can only deliver second best.

  • Spurspañol

    So you have Jack Wilshire and that’s it. Gibbs isn’t good enough and will never be an England regular.

    Arsenal are famous for poaching youngsters that have learnt from a better academy and then passed them off after two years as their own. Is it wrong? Technically, no. In recent history, which is what we are talking, Arsenal have only produced Jack Wilshire. What an example of a youth academy working!

    Spurs have never invested in youth, previously due to bad management (as the plans are in place for huge investment into our own academy) and now due to the demand of football and its fans.

    Arsenal are profitable and have managed to maintain their top four place even in the face of big investors but I will be amazed if they qualify for the next seven years without major investment. If you are a big name in world football it’s possible as you can attract people by name alone, but Arsenal, albeit well known, are not a Barcelona or Manchester United.

    And the last time Arsenal had success it wasn’t with “kids” so to speak. Youth is the way forward but to put nearly all your eggs in that basket is dangerous. If you are a Fulham or a West Ham, well, yeah, invest in youth and you can either get lucky and your team improves, or, you can sell and make a tidy profit. The problem for Arsenal and even Tottenham is that if you produce a world-beater, a star, and he maintains that form for two or three years: he’ll be gone as we don’t have the money to pay the wages these guys want.

    Admire the concept, but in modern football, for the elite teams (or those that wish to get there), invest in youth doesn’t work without greater security to what/who you produce.

  • Stuart


    Are you saying we shouldn’t have the youth system? Because if so, I am not sure we would ever have a decent player if what you say (“we don’t have the money to pay the wages these guys want.”) is correct.

  • Domhuaille MacMathghamhna

    Stuart and Spudspanol….Can’t see where you think our Academy is not doing much. It has produced some really skilled players who are sought after as loanees everywhere in the EPL or who make the first team. Wilshere is one example but there are many more. We do bring in foreign players or recruit locals (the Ox) BUT what smart Club doesn’t? Oh wait….I know one …the Spuds!

    Here are few recent graduates: Szcesny, Gibbs, Wilshere, Frimpong, Cashley Cole, Fabregas, Bendtner to name a few. Here are some facts from the official Arsenal website:

    ¨In total, the Academy products have played 1,306 times for the Arsenal first team since November 1999, scoring 139 goals between them.

    In fact, in every season since the academy opened, Arsenal have blooded graduates – the most in one season was 2009/10 when seven youngsters made their senior debuts, in three different competition.Of the 48 graduates, 15 (31 per cent) are still at Arsenal, while seven (Ashley Cole, Jermaine Pennant, David Bentley, Sebastian Larsson, Fabrice Muamba, Jerome Thomas and Matthew Connolly) play for other Premier League teams.Fifteen (31 per cent) of the players are full internationals, while four are full England internationals (Cole, Bentley, Gibbs and Wilshere).The overwhelming majority of the graduates (38) made their Gunners debut in the League Cup (79 per cent), which has proved to be a successful breeding ground. Of those, 22 went on to play for the first team in other competitions too, meaning that 32 graduates have played in games other than just the League Cup for the first team.

    Not bad….but will get better with the current crop coming up!

  • Stuart

    @ Domhuaille

    Just for the record, I am all for the Youth Academy set up we operate

  • @Tonny that was just cool yo’keep it up yo.

  • Spurspañol

    I am for having a youth academy I just think that the Real Madrid model is more popular than the Barcelona one (buy for the here and now versus build within for the future).

    Arsenal started their academy (really) when they were at the top and they were smart to do so. They had experienced heads in the team but the brand, the name, was number one in England at the time and they attracted decent young players while their first team squad was strong enough.

    Szczesny didn’t come through your youth academy, he was poached from Legia Warsaw at a young age. Helped? Sure, but “made”.. no. Gibbs I don’t think is good enough. Far too naive at the back, bound for mid-table Premier League football at best. Wilshire I mentioned before as one of the success stories. Ashley Cole, too. Okay. Frimpong? Played a couple of games for Wolves before being injured. A star, a first team player who you have saved money on by bringing through? Hardly. He’s more Joey Barton than Alex Song. Fabregas?! Really. He was brought up in the Barcelona way and you stole him. He got you a decent transfer fee but how many trophies? And don’t give me the fucking Ox. You bought him from Southampton less than a year ago! You provided nothing but a squad place in his development. I’d be amazed to see Bendtner next season in the Prem, largly disappointing.

    So in reality, your academy has produced Wilshire and Cole while aiding a few others to relegation fighting teams in the Premier League. Hardly time to pat ourselves on the back now, is it?

    How many, in the last three years say, academy players have come through and you see as main stays in your first team? Okay, we know, Wilshire. The Ox doesn’t count for the reasons I mentioned before. Frimpong in the League Cup? Maybe Gibbs until you dig out a bit of money for a replacement. So.. two. Fantastic.

    And yes, I know Spurs can’t brag about having anything more, I’m not saying our Youth Academy is better, as it’s fucking shit at the moment (bar one or two possible stars). But to give me your spiel about how great yours has been, come on. It has given you two (first-team) players at best in the last five years. One isn’t good enough for a top six team and the other is largely overrated after a good year and then a whole one out injured.

    We produced King who has played (with one knee) and given us years of commitment. A true legend, an English international when fit, and captain until the end. Wilshire hasn’t give you five years yet. Let’s see if he does when the youth players don’t make the grade.

  • WalterBroeckx

    Isn’t it amazing that a Tottenham supporter tells the same thing about the youth academy as the AAA do?????? And I don’t mean that as an attack against Spurspanol at all.

    Just a remarkable coincidence one could say 😉

  • Shard


    I think you are being a little disingenious by saying players coming from other clubs don’t count. An academy gets together the best talent in the age group that it can. If the point of the academy is only to get players from the 50mile radius and get them into the first team, then ok..we’ve only got Wilshere and Gibbs along with Frimpong..(though Wilshere was with Luton Town earlier I think)

    But no succesful academy can work that way. If it’s so easy to identify young talent and get them in from other academies, i wonder why other clubs dont do it more. As I see it, the academy is meant to provide players for the first team, saving money in the process. Where those players come from is a secondary issue. Seen in those terms, the academy has given us plenty of players. Song, Djourou, Cesc, Bendtner, Coquelin, Szczesny.. Also.. Arsenal’s standards are very high. It’s easier for say, an Everton to get more first team players from their academy than it is for us. We do have a fair number of our academy graduates playing for some other clubs..which too makes us money.. So all in all..I would say the Arsenal academy does a good job and produces a lot of players..

  • Spurspañol

    It’s not a question of “not counting”, I merely based it on the players mentioned by the previous poster. Szczesny like Cesc was trained by another team. So I don’t class it is as academy success such as Wilshire, for example. A good, cheap signing yes. A “product” of the Arsenal youth academy.. no.

    Song and Szcezesny are the only two from that list that you would say are first teamers. Djourou I constantly see being criticised, Bendtner won’t net you much when he finally goes and only maybe Coquelin has a chance of getting into the first eleven (from the little games I have seen him play).

    Your point about Everton is exactly my point. A top class academy is likely to produce, at most, two quality first teamers every five or six years. So of course it does save some money. But only if they are not poached away before they reach their true value – as will happen if greater empathise is placed on youth set-ups.

  • Adam

    Wilshere turned out for Luton town before Arsenal.
    Frimpong is Ghanian but lived in Tottenham.
    Walcott is Southampton educated but born in Stanmore.
    Gibbs is ex-dons.
    Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain. Born in Portsmouth but Southampton trained.
    Henri Lansbury. Enfield born, We got him from Norwich in 1999.
    My point is, These kids do have history before Arsenal. We don’t have a maturnity ward at Highbury or the Emirates so they can be forgiven for not being born on our half way line.
    Are these local lads, No, Are they dedicated to Arsenal? I don’t know. But they all chose Arsenal over Tottenham. Even the lad Frimpong who lived in Tottenham.

  • Scott

    Barcas biggest success story is Messi……isn’t he Argentinian????

  • Spurspañol

    Again, try to read what I actually said. I didn’t say they needed to be Arsenal born and bred (the example of King is just coincidence that he was born in London) just that their main development came at other teams.

    Frimpong I didn’t question as a product of the youth academy, only that I don’t see him as a first team regular. Walcott was a huge talent at Southampton and developed his skills there before you signed him – so I don’t class it as an academy “success”. The same goes with the Ox. Just because you sign him and he plays well, doesn’t mean that the academy PRODUCED him. Henri Lansbury .. well, the jury is still out but I don’t view him as a first team player either.

    So please, read between the lines of what I said. I didn’t say you haven’t produced decent players only that the majority won’t benefit your first team. And again, I don’t mean to say players can’t have history or a team before they go to Arsenal, but if their main development was produced elsewhere then you can’t take credit for it – Cesc, Ox, Szcez and Walcott as examples. There were great signings without doubt, but “products” of the academy they were not.

    I’m sure I speak on behalf of all Spurs fans at how distraught we are that Frimpong chose you over us.

  • Stuart


    It is also worth keeping in mind that the academy was set up around 15 years ago so would only just be starting to turn out first team players who have learnt the trade at Arsenal so realistically speaking, allowing for some time for the club to learn from their own mistakes at first, I would say that 1 player produced is a good sign as it proves it works.

    With some fine tuning all along the way it can be made more lean and effective.

    I think it is too early to say it has not been a success.

  • Spurspañol

    Look, I’m not slamming the academy system in general. It is the future, Arsenal have a good head start on most and will, I’m sure, produce a few good players every now and again. What I am saying is, that up until now, it hasn’t produced many “money-saving” players, you know, like Wilshire (and there is no proof that it will produce another either).

    Youth investment is the future as with the likes of Chelsea, United, City and even Liverpool spending millions on players and wages you will need to attract players by your methods, your style of football, your vision for the future. Spurs can’t say to Eden Hazard; “Hey, we’re building a good, young team aiming to challenge for the title in a couple of years and you could help be a part of that,” as he’d just laugh. The big, big names in World football want a team that is challenging for trophies year in year out.

    When our facilities are up and running I’m sure there will be a huge investment in our scouting networks to get the next superstars on our books before they reach the first team. Are most of these potential “superstars” flops? Probably, for various reasons. But for the reason like you said if it can gain a good reputation, blood in promising youngsters into the first team squad, it does a job. And like I said, the Arsenal academy DOES a job. Just, at the moment, it cannot be hailed as a success .. yet!

    My fear with the youth set-up is what I mentioned before. If you produce a really good, young player that is destined to be a first team regular, who is to say at 16 a Chelsea, Real Madrid or City won’t come in and offer him silly money and you get 3M como and performance based payments? There needs to be much greater protection.