Thank goodness the Anti-Arsenal Arsenal were not so active in 1991

By Tony Attwood

You might remember 1991.   But just in case not, here’s what happened.   We got drawn away to Wrexham in the FA Cup.  4 January 1991.

We had quite a decent team.  Seaman, Dixon, Winterburn, O’Leary, Rocastle, Adams, Smith, Merson.

You might remember some of those guys.   We still chant Rocastle’s name as a sacred memory.  There’s a statue up to Tony Adams.  You may have noticed it as you come over the bridge.

So a fairly solid side.

And we lost 1-2.

To Wrexham.

Fortunately no one ordered a mass clear out of the club’s players.  Seaman, Dixon, Winterburn, O’Leary, Rocastle, Adams, Smith, Merson – it was thought that some of them at least might have something more to give to Arsenal.

And of course that was not the only Cup disaster that Arsenal has suffered.  Here are some others, just in case you think that yesterday’s poor performance has never happened before.

4 January 1958.  FA Cup.  Lost to Northampton Town 1-3  (Northampton is my nearest league club.  There are still people around who talk about being there on that day).

3 January 1965.  FA Cup.  Lost to Peterborough 1-2

18 January 1960.  Lost to Rotherham 0-2

October 2 1973.  League Cup.  Lost to Tranmere.  This one is particularly interesting because it included a number of players who had won the Double in 1971.  Bob Wilson in goal, plus Rice, McNab, Simpson, Armstrong, Ball, Radford, Kennedy, Storey.  Just consider those last three names and the goalkeeper.  And we lost to Tranmere.

29 August 1978.  League Cup.  Lost to Rotherham 1-3

11 December 1980.  League Cup.  Lost to Swindon 3-4

4 January 1985.  FA Cup Lost to York 0-1  (that team include Lukic, Samson, Talbot, O’Leary, Marriner, Woodcock, Charlie Nicholas, Steve Williams.

22 November 1989.  League Cup.  Lost to Oldham 1-3

My point is that upsets against lower league clubs happen.  The difference is that until now it has never happened to Mr Wenger.  But it happened under Bertie Mee, George Graham and the rest.  It hurt just as much – I can remember the Wrexham and York defeats particularly well – not only how I felt that day but also the next day.  And the next.

In a while I am going to put a piece on the Arsenal History Society site about one such match – significant because it was the last Cup match under Herbert Chapman.   It was the last not because some proto-AAA group forced Chapman out but because sadly he died.  But it shows how everyone can have this type of upset.

But for now I want to consider 3 January 1948.  Long before most of today’s supporters at the Emirates were born.   We lost 0-1 to…..  Bradford.  Tom Whittaker, one of the greatest servants the club has ever known, was the manager that day.   It is worth recalling because we went on to win the league that season.

My point is not that we will win the league this season, but rather that these upsets happen.  They happen not just to Arsenal but to all top clubs.  Man U, Liverpool… clubs that have had long runs at the top, have all suffered ignominious defeats.

Judgements should be made over time, not day by day.  You can say, Arsenal has not won a trophy for 7 years, and make a case for wholesale regime change.  Or you can look at the fact that we have been in the knock out stages of the Champions League for 13 consecutive years and say, that is incredible, and could never have been imagined in previous eras.

I favour the latter interpretation, but I can appreciate the former.  But any sort of reaction based on one game, or indeed even one season, is in essence the Tottenhamisation of Arsenal.  It’s what clubs that have recently celebrated 50 years since they last won the league do.   I don’t think it is what Arsenal should do.


The books…

The sites…

145 Replies to “Thank goodness the Anti-Arsenal Arsenal were not so active in 1991”

  1. It feels like things are getting out of control. I have never seen such anger between fans. I find calling for Wenger’s head ridiculous and stupid, but the media are pumping it up again as usual and fans are becoming more and more reckless. I think I heard “sacked in the morning chants” yesterday. Are we gonna get low like Blackburn fans? I blamed them for Blackburn relegation last year. Players tend to play bad when they are getting booed from the stands.
    I honestly feel ashamed of the attitude fans are showing. Is there a way back? What do you think?

  2. Tony,

    The Wrexham game was in 1992, and the main reason that game was such a big loss was that we were the reigning league champions.

  3. The Arsenal side that lost to Wrexham was not worth £140m in wages and Arsenal were unlucky that night as there was some definitely some dodgy refereeing decisions. However, they weren’t unlucky last night, they DESERVED to lose. When you compare the financial disparity, this has to be the worst result in Arsenal’s history.

    I’m afraid Mr Attwood you’re starting to seem like a rather peculiar individual. Even a pro-Wenger blog like Arseblog was heavily critical of last night and asked big questions about the future of the manager. You on the other hand? Well, it’s hard to expect reasoned logic from a website whose remit is “Lord Wenger Coach of The Decade”.

    I suggest you put things in perspective, show some balance and get a grip of yourself before you become a laughing stock.

  4. Here we go again, as soon as another hideous defeat is upon us we have the wenger worshippers going back in time or quickly trying to find someone to blame…but hey your time is running out…people have seen through this folly….the dictator will be removed and the apolgists will be crying…

  5. Reading this post made me realize why Wenger is still in charge, even though it’s obvious for thousands of people how many mistakes he has done for years and continues doing. As if being beaten by an unknown club wasn’t bad enough, but then Wenger comes and defends the absolutely horrible performance and players and says they did well. Seriously?

    People need to wake up. Yes, we are making it to the knockout stages of the champions league, but then what? You know you’;; never win it. We are always out of the competition for the league 4 or 5 months before it even ends. We have shitty players that are overpaid and produce absolutely nothing in return. We have no spirit, no desire to win, no passion, and more importantly, no love for the game anymore. You can see the players out their on the pitch not even caring about the result or trying their best, except maybe for a few (poor wilshere won’t be staying at Arsenal for long if this keeps going on).

    Wake up Arsene followers, and remember who you really support. You support a big club that used to be the best one of the best in Engalnd, europe and the world … now we are just a joke. Stop spending your hard earned money (well, for most it is) to watch this hopeless manager ruin the one thing you love. Make a stand already. It has gone for long enough.

  6. Derek you can write so fast that you contradict yourself without noticing it. Look for it yourself. 😉

  7. I am firm believer that Wenger should leave and have been saying that for the past 4 seasons. However, last night was not his fault. The players are entirely to blame. The majority do not give a toss about Arsenal and do not know what it means to play for the club. They should be totally ashamed of themselves. If Wenger would have put out a reserve and youth team, then we could blame him for not taking it seriously etc, but this was basically the best players in our squad that are currently fit (except for Arteta). The players are not good enough and that is Wenger’s fault. He has bought terribly and sold our best players to our rivals. You could not even make this stuff up.

  8. Firstly I remember that day very well, I have got to comment that we were mugged that day by some poor refereeing decicions. Leading 1-0 with 4 mins to go if remember corectly they got awarded a freekick on edge of area & scored, it was never a freekick. Then they scored winner in last minute. But in injury time we scored what we thought was the equaliser only to have it ruled for offside which TV replays proved to be wrong decision. Sorry had to state that as I always feel annoyed about that game & the incompetence of the ref.
    We had a better team than we have now though & they were winning things so I don’t really think you can compare as when you are winning you can except the odd mees up but when you have been useless & getting worse each year its more annoying as there was a chance for a trophy, even if it is a crap one.
    Gervinho, Chamakh & Ramsey are 3 names to start the clear out with 😉

  9. I suspect the “sacked in the morning” chants came from slightly mischievous Bradford fans.
    But anyway, press or no press, we are in a slump and the issue at stake here is whether or not AW is the man capable of leading us out if it. The trouble is the slump has been going on for a number of years (not, repeat not, trotting out the lack of trophies but point to Eduardo’s leg break as the seminal moment)and has been overseen by AW and everything he tries seems to make the hole bigger. It’s not helped by lack of accountability, an absent and largely uncaring majority shareholder “owner” and a board that is ineffective. We can’t do much about that, but I do feel as though a change of manager is something that is now beyond doubt to freshen up something which has gone very stale.

  10. Great points, this game shouldn’t be looked at in isolation.

    Anyone who cannot see that performances over the last 7 years are getting worse over time are kidding themselves.

    I don’t think Arsenal fans are reckless. I think they are the most patient fans out there. Who else would stick with Wenger well past his sell-by date. The players aren’t as good as we’ve had in the past perhaps, but I’d argue Arsene can no longer get the best out of them. These days, they seem to get worse under his tutelage.

    And qualification for CL is a great achievement, but ask yourself this question…do you think we are remotely competitive outside the group stage?

  11. Am a WHU fan – going Emirates Boxing Day away end obviously.
    If the tube strike is on will the game definitely get called off? Thanks.

  12. I read something funny last night from Mario Balotelli on twitter last night: He said the fa has brought out a new rule, anyone passing to gervinho will be booked for time wasting. And yet STILL there are about two people who defend this useless waste of space. Ramsey is just as bad along with Poldoski. The one point you can give Ramsey is he’s being played out of position, but in the middle he’s looked sloppy as well. As one poster said, Gervinho is ugly aesthetically as what does with the ball. CLUELESS

  13. Ok, enough is enough.

    Yes we know that you want Arsene to remain at Arsenal. Yes we know that you cannot hear a word of criticism against him (and I am with you that much of it is way OTT). But you simply cannot go unchecked if you detract from the wonderful teams of our past just to build your agenda and defend the indefensible. Face facts.

    When taken in context, you simply cannot compare the outrage and aftermath to last nights debacle to its Wrexham counterpart. This is for two reasons

    1. The 1992 side was one of THE great Arsenal sides of all time. They were champions for two of the previous 3 seasons. Yes it was awful and yes it was unexpected. But of course the reaction will not be as severe at such times, because as we could all see, that was a great team. A team that had given us some of our best ever memories in the previous season or so. Last nights result was ‘accomplished’ by a team that, at the very very very best, has been dreadfully, consistently mediocre year after year after year. In short, the anger at least nights result is natural and obvious as the result was the inevitable culimnation of a failing team. TO compare to 1991 is apples and oranges.

    The second reason is that more people have a voice now, so of course there will be more dissenting voices. That is just inevitable. It is not desirable, but it is the way of the world. And indeed, it is the only reason that you are able to publicise your own view.

    The bottom line is that Arsenal, Arsene and the team absolutely deserve both barrels for last night. And I’m sure you know it as well as I do. Man up, take the criticism and move on.

    One final point – Tottenhamisation of Arsenal? Are you serious? Arsenal has been Totttenhamised by fans who take the view that the past few years have been anyting other than dire! We know that you are a fan long enough to have joined the rest of us as we looked down on sad pathetic little Spurs as they played lovely fluid football but won nothing, while we won trophy after trophy playing more effective pragmatic game. And yet their hilarious bleating excuse was that they would rather not compromise their so-called philosophy just to win a trophy!!!! Tony, you must remember that! It pains me, just as it pains other Arsenal fans of our generation that we are using the exact same humiliating excuses when people talk about Chelseas success. I could never be so utterly hypocritical as to take this line, because it simply turns us into the Tottenham we always had contempt for.

  14. Lacking what to say but the PLAYERS LET US DOWN DOWN. We had the opportunities to finish the match but. Penalty shoot out was on a wrong note by starting with Caz. It looks like we are LOOSING FOCUS but i know this is not the worst.

  15. Part 1 – I’ve always tried to take a balanced view on the last 7 years at AFC. I fully supported the building of a team of youngsters – I thought that we could have our very own golden generation just like Red Nose did with Beckham, Giggs et al. How sweet that would have been. I fully supported the idea that we shouldn’t run ourselves into the ground financially after the Emirates was built. I was prepared to lower my expectations and accept that we wouldn’t challenge on all fronts (we now don’t challenge on any). Originally, I accepted that the FFP was important and that we should prepare for them. However, what I could not accept is the refusal to tie down any of our players to longer than a 1 year contract after the age of 30. This would have made the Golden Generation project work in my opinion – experienced players alongside youth. I can’t accept the mismanagement of players contracts, the wage bill based on keeping harmony in the squad (all it did is make average players think they were worth more). I can’t accept the selling of keys players to key rivals. Buying players that should not be playing in the EPL let alone in an Arsenal shirt (and players over 30). All these things are all based on the running of the club. I could live with this if I could watch Arsenal put other teams to the sword, to see them play consistently better against the teams they SHOULD be beating, to see us grind out results when needed. To see some fight and fire. What I am seeing is a group of players (not a team of players) who don’t even want to be there. A manager who does not know what to do.

    Part 2- Last season we grabbed 4th place because of everyone else – not us. We didn’t deserve it and I for one did not feel the sense of relief that I should have. We won’t get 4th place this season and on the basis of the squad, the tactics, and the commitment, we don’t deserve to. I’m one of the growing number of people who hope that we finish in mid table mediocrity as it might serve to kick the backsides of the board. And before everyone jumps on my back – I’ve supported Arsenal since 1979 – I’ve been through some dark times but never as bad as this. Every facet of the club is failing the fans. I’m loyal to Arsenal and always will be but I am not loyal to this collection of players, or indeed our great manager. I’m certainly not loyal to the board. I always dreamt of taking my son to the Arsenal. I’m taking him to his first football match this Saturday. Woking vs Welling United in the FA Trophy. Can’t wait.

  16. You left out the 1-3 defeat at the hands of 3rd Division Swindon Town in the 1969 League Cup Final. I was there and it wasn’t pretty.

    Nobody called for Bertie Mee’s head then because we had just gone 16 years without a trophy and Mee had no reputation to defend plus he seemed to be building a team.

  17. Fourth richest club in the world, no trophey for almoat 8 years? Things are going swimmingly for the board. 40 odd k on emirates waiting list? money rolling in like water on a match day, selling players at a mark-up. Its not going to end….The only way as some of my mates have suggested is if their club missed out on champ league for a season or two to ram the message home to the board, that policy isnt always the BEST policy. Everyone knows Walcott is gone, Rvp went. It is sooooo blatant what they are doing that its not even a secret. I can understand why that march took place now……….its a mick take.

  18. Out of the PL, Out of the CC, soon out the CL and very soon out the FA, soon wenger out come MAY!!!

  19. The thing is, it was not just match against Bradford. Norwich, Schalke, Aston Villa, Swansea, gutless performance against FAnchester United… We won 10 out of 25 matches so far with 6 defeats, Vermaelen has lost his form since he was promoted to captain which is the main reason we act like we don’t have any leader on the pitch, our midfield lacks steel, Gervinho has been played in the middle and Podolski on the wing though vice versa would produce better result, Ramsey has been played on the wing ever since that match against Shitty, reliance on eternaly injured Diaby, it seems like there is no order when it comes to set-pieces (in both ends of the pitch), poor pre-season and match preparation which causes players start playing after 30 minutes…

    And everything I mentioned above is Wenger’s fault.

  20. Tony,

    Until this season, I was a strong supporter of AW. But you have to understand that the anger isn’t about one loss to Bradford. If things were going well, and the club was in good shape and moving in the right direction, we, as fans, would have been gutted by the loss, but we would not have connected it to a larger campaign against AW, the board, SK, IG, etc.

    In that way, your piece is tone deaf.

    It’s not that they lost one game. It’s that the club is in a shambolic state. It’s that we lost a game with players playing out of position (Gervinho, Ramsey) and who aren’t good enough to wear the Arsenal shirt (Gervinho, Ramsey, Chamakh). We lost a game with a team that gave no effort, on the heels of games upon games with no effort. We lost with a team that has one legitimate striker on the roster (Giroud), and he isn’t really good enough to be more than a solid squad player for Arsenal (playing in the League Cup and giving an occasional rest to the real striker(s)). We lost with a team that has no backup left back to a starting left back that can’t stay healthy, that went months last season with no fullbacks (and yet none were purchased or borrowed in the January window). We lost with a team that consistently, year after year, sells its best players and replaces them with inferior, inexpensive buys or far inferior internal options.

    I mean, you can’t honestly make a comparison between Seaman, Dixon, Adams, etc. and Gervinho, Ramsey and Chamakh, can you?

    I admire all AW has done for Arsenal. He was one of the greatest managers ever to walk the sidelines for any team in any league. And I don’t think he is the whole problem. While he won’t admit it, he is clearly handcuffed by a board an principal owner with no interest in winning. But AW has to take his share of the shambles that is Arsenal. He not only signed (and gave massive wages) to Chamakh, Gervinho, Squillaci, Denilson, Bendtner, Djouru, Santos, Ramsey, Arshavin and others who are so awful nobody will even take them on a free now at the wages they are earning. And he is the one that keeps putting Ramsey and Gernvinho out there to fail, as they both are playing out of position and are useless in any position (bad combo).

    To sum up: The club is in crisis, and your piece makes it sound like Arsenal supporters are upset because we lost to Bradford. No, we could have beaten Bradford 10-0, and the problems at Arsenal would still be there. But watching an uninspired team (outside of Jack) not give a crap and go out to a League 2 team, and then to have AW defend them, is going to make people angry in light of the bigger picture.

  21. Despite these obvious flaws the team should have won. The defence looked leaky, as it always does. This defence should be solid when you look at it. Sagna is arguably the finest RB in the premier league and Mertesacker and Vermaelen are two solid centre-halves. Gibbs is also a very proficient LB who could some day be a regular for England. However they do not perform like they should. Ferguson his heralded rightly as a legendary manager, in no small way down to his ability to get the most from his players. Wenger has players who palpably under achieve lately. Years ago when players like Hleb and Flamini left and failed to hold their standards on other teams Wenger was praised for his foresight. Someone tell me how this is true in the last few years? Nasri, Fabregas, van Persie…and more than liekly Walcott????

    This is not some rash outburst and even if we qualify for the Europe like last year (probably due to some other team’s failings rather than out success) I will maintain my opinion. Wenger is a legend no doubt who I will always admire. His philosophy and the ways he changed the club for the better will surely grant him adoration from all Arsenal fans forever. The longer however this mediocrity remains the more his image will be tainted. I would love to be proved wrong and for Wenger to guide us to another period of success but I can’t see it happening. The fact remains though that he seems immovable with a board more concerned with the bottom line than any success.

  22. the difference between then and now is, even though we were called “1-0 to the arsenal” we in the league still scored 74 goals, but we only conceded 18 goals. thats a rate of .47 conceded goals per game, we are presently conceding 1 goal per game. Tony you keep saying ” forget the past and lets look to the future” ok here’s a preposition for you, forget AW’s past achievements, clean slate from today onwards for the rest of the season, lets see how he does and then honestly tell us all at the end of the season if you think he still compares to the man he use to be.

  23. Please do not misplace your respect and admiration for Thierry as a player as having an ability to manage an elite club. Yes, Thierry is a club great and he would definitely be given time from both the fans and the board but when has he ever shown any sort of nous as a manager? It takes a very smart and intelligent man to be a great manager and there are many factors that need to be considered.

    Many ex-players have gone on to manage their clubs, but these individuals have been leaders and legends of their respective club, and whilst Thierry is indeed a legend I did not think he was an incredible captain.

    Yes, he was a big personality and had a mentality for the big games but never in his history at Arsenal or any other football club did I see any sort of managerial qualities.

    Whilst I know using Wenger as an example as a great manager may irk certain people, I still believe he is a great and will overcome this spell to reaffirm his status within the club; and one of Wenger’s greatest traits is the belief and support he shows to his players. Wenger has stood by all his players, even the ones who have left him prematurely for money or other reasons. I don’t believe Thierry has this particular quality. I remember numerous occasions when Henry would frown or shrug or lambast one of his colleagues for not picking the right pass or not simply giving the ball to him sooner. This may be an example of a lack of patience, something that is essential for all modern-day managers.

    Secondly, the man has no experience. Do you think United would give the manager’s position to an ex-player just because he was great. Ferguson goes through a bad spell, retires, Guardiola and Mourinho are unavailable so United decide to opt for Paul Scholes or Ryan Giggs to take the reins because they are ‘constantly around the players’ and already know and have a ‘relationship with the current squad’.

    I don’t think so.

    If Wenger does decide to step down, I would imagine a club like Arsenal and a man like Wenger would already have someone lined up. Wenger has turned down some of the biggest jobs in Europe because he has a strong affinity with Arsenal. He would never leave them without offering some advice or opinion on who he thinks would best serve the Arsenal philosophy.

    We must also take into consideration that we offer a very exciting position for any aspiring manager. We have the foundation of an excellent team with exciting young prospects such as Wilshere, Chamberlain, Szczesny, Gibbs alongside established internationals Carzola, Podolski, Vermaelen, Sagna. We have a healthy budget that I’m sure would become available for a new manager to dip into in order to stamp their mark upon the team. And lastly we are an established, elite football club widely respected around the world.

    We do not need to panic and do a Newcastle and elevate a former player with no managerial experience into a position that could well damage his status within the club. Let’s be smart, take our time, weather the storm and see what happens.

  24. Connor, you’ve absolutely hit the nail on the head. The way the club is run on a footballing level is a complete mess from top to bottom. We are raped every season of our top players who cannot wait to leave because this club now totally lacks ambition.We have slowly got worse and worse. To try and suggest that fans anger is a knee jerk reaction is a joke….it’s not, I’ve also have shown in faith in Wengers methods because of what he has achieved for us in the past ….but he has just let us all down. Enough is enough, no managers job should be guaranteed, unless he’s doing what he’s paid a lot of money to do……win football matches, and make the club successful……we need a football manager , not an accountant !!

  25. @siman, are you on drugs? you twonk. WEather the storm is it? for how many more years do you suggest einstien? How a team with the fifth-highest wage bill in the Premier League can have only one passable striker is laughable. Gervinho’s decision-making and finishing should prevent Wenger from picking him, and Chamakh is walking, talking proof that Wenger and Arsenal’s penny pinching can backfire spectacularly. Arsenal waited a full year in order to get Chamakh on a free instead of forking out £7million. This resulted in the Gelled One getting a much higher salary than he deserved. One decent half a season in four years later and he’s done nothing and is happy to turn up and collect his bloated salary till his deal runs out while no-one will take him off our hands because no-one is stupid enough to pay him what we’ve been paying him for the past four years!

    And you have to ask yourself what exactly it is that Wenger does. It’s well know his style of management is to, well, not manage. He likes his players to go out and express themselves freely on the pitch. This lack of management and leadership perhaps explains some of the baffling statistics Arsenal are responsible for. Like the stat by this fine site about the staggering number of goals conceded due to individual errors. It can also be the reason why nights like tonight are so possible. Wenger seems to have grown a serious disdain for tactics.

    Whenever asked about how he will approach a game his answer is always the same – “er, well, we will go out and try to play our game” – this game of ours is to hog the ball, pass it around a lot and maybe if we’re lucky score a goal or two. The problem with this is that for it to work, many many things need to be going our way. For a start Confidence needs to be high, passes need to be quick and accurate, technique needs to be flawless and if the oppo is defending well, players need imagination, audacity and all need to be on the same wavelength.

    This is a lot to ask and it’s even more to ask if you are lowering the quality of the players every season. Arsenal’s obsession with doing it on the cheap means Wenger cannot ‘build a team’ capable of success. You simply cannot build a team if your prize players, the ones you build your team around, leave in the middle of your team building project. We went to 4-3-3 to accommodate Cesc, to give him more attacking freedom and less defensive responsibility. That was fine but then Cesc left. He left because he looked at our team and then he looked at Man U, Chelsea & City and thought “I’m never going to win anything here, whats the point in staying and torturing myself with failure year on year”. Okay so Cesc is gone, do we tweak the formation to get the best out of the players we have? No, we instead ask a young Welshman to be as good as Cesc. That didn’t go so well last year did it? Luckily Rosicky can do a better impersonation of Cesc and we managed to scrape third – oh yeah but not without the genius and goals from our Dutch captain who emerged as the best striker in the Premier League. What did we do with him? We sold him to the team who came second in the league on goal difference and finished 19 points ahead of us. Talk about bridging the gap!

    Basically Arsenal are not a winning team anymore. We are a selling club who care only about qualifying for the Champions Lge. Our manager has lost the drive to win – he is rewarded handsomely for not winning anything, as his larger than Fergie salary proves. Our Chief Executive is more politician than football man and is also generously rewarded for a season that was a failure in every way but financially. Our players try but lack the leadership and direction from the manager and have tasted defeat under Wenger and have realised it doesn’t taste too bitter at all! And the ones who still don’t like the taste, the ones who are better than the rest? They bugger off for more money, less responsibility and more success.

    It’s only a matter of time before the fans do the same.

  26. Mr. Attwood,
    When a team, our team, uproots (or allow uprooting) its best sprouts, it paves the way for a dust bowl. Imo, an end to the current cascading madness would start with a show of pragmatic loyalty and decent wage policy by renewing and extending Walcott and Sagna. Will you openly advocate for (or against) this in advance? Or will you continue to do as you did with Song: namely wait until you see what happens and then explain AFC/AW’s genius in fattening the bottom line and (as you then wrote!) continue to getting Barca to spend itself into bankruptcy. Do you recall that dire prediction? That ideologue’s rationalization for tearing the spine out of and liquidating our midfield? Are you unwilling to advocate, here and now, for their inclusion or exclusion from the team? (Or is it always, well, only management knows all the reasons, and one must be a tribalist badge-kisser to be a gooner gunner? Always to go along with what management has decided to get along? And, today, it’s anyone who differs automatically gets smeared with your preferred AAA label?

    Mr. Attwood, when the preferred discussion becomes who is and who isn’t AAA, over and over and over again, it’s to the detriment of the quality of discussion and debate that this site has previously nourished; and the site becomes a non-stop loyalty test, full of its own moralistic self-righteousness. You are abetting that sad direction and in your one-sidedness. One can well support AW, even now, without worshipping Lord Wenger. It is no favor to his longevity to fail to advocate changes of course and to plead for fuller disclosure. Please take to heart that yes men are only to the detriment of good people in powerful positions. What we need is actual assessment; real analysis; honest advocacy, whichever ways it takes us. Instead, it’s all now who’s the real fan; who’s the fake fan; not the actual pursuit of as accurate an analysis as possible, and finding the guts to advocate for a position before management makes its decision, and then scrambling to rationalize it either before or after the fact.

  27. Arsenal are depending on a 30-year-old uncapped Spanish midfielder who accepted a lower salary to play Champions League football, to lead them to glory.

    Pretty much sums it up for me.

  28. “I cannot fault the effort we gave for 120 minutes” haha really if that´s the effort you want then no wonder we can´t win anything. It´s time for a coach that actually demands something from the players and if they dont do it ship them out

    The most shameless person on earth!!! Wenger still has the cheek to stay as manager after so many years of embarrassement? He was so lucky to have those star players won everything for him and when it comes to building his own team, this is what we saw last night – a league one quality first team. I’ve kept saying for many years, Wenger is just a financial specialist and a good scout maybe, and I am curious how a person who has never played competitive football can have any clue about the thing called “TACTICS”!!! WENGER OUT!!!

  29. @Sean, many of the Arsenal team had been ill just previous to the game. And Swindon were in division three, not the equivalent of division 4 where Bradford play.

    This comparison by Tony is specious and that’s being generous. All comparisons of this ilk are odious in my view.

  30. This feels like the beginning of the end of an era. Arsenal cannot get much lower, but in the wake of this defeat, an upwardly mobile club is hard to picture without a more fundamental change. There are more deep-rooted problems to deal with; ‘Silent’ Stan Kroenke hardly seems ideal as a leadership personality at this moment.

    No longer, though, can the manager escape an element of responsibility for this decline

  31. @ Derek
    You’re on the wrong blog. Why not jog off to Le Grove and be amongst your own type of “supporter” moan moan moan moan moan.
    Ever heard the saying ” If you’ve nothing good to say about someone, don’t say anything”
    You’re typical of someone who knows all the answers but in reality you kow nothing at all apart from what’s in your mind.
    I’ll guess that if we were top of the league and through in the CC you’d be happy today.
    You’re just a very unhappy disgruntles miserable person.
    Be happy.
    “wenger out” How about “Derek out”.
    Gooner for life.

  32. It would appear that a lot is being lost in hyperbole and context from both sides of the debate.

    For example, whilst 1991 was a complete bolt from the blue, can anyone really say that last night wasn’t at least slightly expected?

    Our form has not been great 3w/5d/3l from last 11 in all games according to the beeb, so a loss to a perceived ‘lesser team’ is not that much out of context.

    Or perhaps is is the perennial excuses which coincide with the losses which is more galling and leads to what appears on the surface to be knee-jerking?

    Well for me, it is the sheer lack of accountability by all those involved that pains the most. The sloping shoulders and lack of fight in the team, the increasing acceptance of mediocrity by many (including fans). Especially when that acceptance of a string (not one off) of paltry performances is purely on the basis that any desire for accountability would ultimately lead to direct conflict of supporting the current manager.

    Arsene is not bigger than the club, it existed long before (as the above article inadvertently highlights) and will be there long after.

    The fact that the beeb, historically so ready to belittle anyone who suggests anything other than the fact that Wenger can rest on the laurels of his early success, are now chief protagonists says a lot.

    Considering our fans pay more than any other in Europe, why should they not wish for accountability. There is no divine right to win everything, but it would be nice to at least think we could try once in a while.

    Even George Grahams teams fought, even if they weren’t the most fluid and breathtaking to watch at times, they knew damned well that some times you have to travel up north where it is indeed grim, and grind it out.

    I wish that things were different, but they are not, so now I urge people to deal with the present, not the past, or the future, but the present.

    because presently things are not all rosy, and it’s not just down to one game. And in your heart of hearts every gunner knows that to be true.

  33. @derek

    “and I am curious how a person who has never played competitive football can have any clue about the thing called “TACTICS”!!! WENGER OUT!!!”

    The name José Mário dos Santos Mourinho Félix springs to mind.

  34. You are right but it’s getting to the point where all those legacies would be wiped off if care is not taken. Winger could have prevented this from happening in my opinion. TH14 will always recall the fact that for his entire stay in Arsenal, he never lost to a Tottenham side. That’s pride to me.

    As it is, if the situation is not urgently addressed, the record of continuous qualification for UEFA’s Champions League for 16 straight years will go at the end of this season at this rate.

    Time to call a spade A SPADE!

  35. There’s no doubt wenger is a excellent manager ! But the guy can’t admit when his team play bad! At least fergi can ! Arsenal would never sack him because they no he’s the only manager that would put up with lack or money and his love for the club

  36. For all of you defending Wenger as a good manager, read this, please. In last two seasons he has been doing the same every game regardles who we played and what was the score. Same substitutes at the same time, usually very late in the game 75 min, then 80 min, and always the same straight change. I was able to tell who and when he is going to bring on at most of the games that my kids started to laugh how often I was right. Not to mention that he never changes the tactic at half time or during the game to address the score line or to match the tactical changes from the opposition. When did you see him react immidiately after conceding a goal like Ferguson or Murihno does for example. When did you see him change formation half way through the game, or God forbiden doing a sub or two at half time if some players are not performing. Not to mention his poor ability to motivate players for so called easy games to play and win them. And these so called easy games are the ones that cost us dearly and have left us with the huge point gaps with the top of the table. Add to all of this his transfer policy and ther you have it…

  37. Derek,
    I finally found the time to look at your postings behind the scene and found 3 different names and mail addresses that you use + the copy past you do.
    I think we have been very patient about you but this has come to an end.
    Unless you try another nick name and mail address of course…

    For the regulars, sorry it took so long to check him out

  38. @ Walter

    Thank you.
    I’m all for everyone having their say but….
    The guy is just depressing.

  39. To those who wish for Wenger’s head and wholesale changes in our Club NOW….I say this:
    A post mortem is only carried out AFTER the death of the subject. Wait until May before the inquest considers the outcome of our season

  40. Time for everyone to calm down and overreacting after every loss/draw and then at the same time diminishing the wins. Wins and losses are part of the game and it is a very long season. Let’s just see how the season plays out. Arsenal clearly has talent (just look at the number of international players on the squad). The team is competitive and I feel capable of going on a good run. In the long run this loss can be a benefit, by giving the team less games to worry about so they can get some rest throughout the season as well. City got knocked out of the Champions League early, and that helped them win the Premier League last year. Support the team when you go to the home games, or just give your tickets to someone who will! just my 2 cents

  41. I used to find Bradford depressing, it was only the curries that made it at all palatable.

    Last night didn’t do any favours in making me want to go back there any time soon.

  42. To those who wish for Wenger’s head and wholesale changes in our Club NOW….I say this:
    A post mortem is only carried out AFTER the death of the subject. Wait until sunny and warm May 2013 before an inquest can consider the outcome of our season, NOT now in bleak mid-winter.
    We are not dead, only suffering a bit…. from which we will recover as we always do. We may need a transfusion in January of course but Doc Arsene will decide about that.
    Those who are still of little faith….remember last season?

  43. Nicky, the death occurs less than a few weeks after Wenger said ‘you cannot be considered a big club if you sell your biggest players’ back in July 2011.

    It was a slow lingering death and though the corpse is still twitching, I don’t expect anything different come may to last year, or the year before, except there is an increased chance of losing out on top 4 this time round.

    The change should have already happened, if it was a PLC then these days the CEO would have already gone, not leveraged a £650K bonus and renewed his contract for another year.

  44. Tt seems to me that these days that everything comes back to Wenger and positions are so deeply entrenched with the pro and anti sides basically repeating the same arguments over and over again at each other. Personally I don’t consider myself an AKA, AAA or anything else, but just a regular supporter who wants the club to do well, and feels disappointed and sometimes angry when it doesn’t.

    Wenger isn’t going to get fired or walk away this week, and in all likelihood will still be there at the end of the season. So to keep arguing about him or screaming for him to go is imo a waste of time. There may be a time for this come next May depending on what happens.

    Arsenal (the club) is made of stronger stuff than the likes of QPR or Blackburn and won’t be rushed into decisions, no matter how much the media tries to force them.

    For what it’s worth I am having some doubts about AW for the first time. But right now the issues are around the manager, staff and players currently at the club and how they turn things around now. My support isn’t going to vary because vociferous negativity has never got us anywhere, and never will.

  45. With all due respect to Wenger and all he has achieved for Arsenal in the past, I’ll like to ask if he feels so convinced of the path he’s treading he is courageous enough to tie his emoluments to achievements in the form of huge bonuses if the club wins a trophy – any trophy? As he always asks to be judged at the end of the season, will he be willing to take a pay cut until the end of the season when his achievement would dictate how much he should be paid?

    He deliberately refrained from having any share in Arsenal for supposedly personal reasons as such not much his at stake for him beside his contract not been extended. Since he believes this is the best squad he’s had in a long time, then he should be willing to take risk with his salary otherwise, he should allow the club to make progress. To me, he used to be good but nowadays his ideas of how football ought to be played has become outdated.

  46. @YKY & Stroller,
    All this doom and gloom directed at Arsene Wenger and the alleged mess we are in HALFWAY IN THE SEASON is a waste of time and print. There is nothing Gooners can do to alter things for the better, so support for team, Club and Manager is the proper course of action.
    I repeat “Remember last season”.

  47. Sorry but I cannot tolerate this anymore. For several years, I have to take a break from following Arsenal FC during the season and such a period has become longer and longer. Sooner or later, there will be a time when I stop following for good.

    Looking at their profile and their fomermer/individual performance. This should be a team of great promise, yet the performance on the pitch is as poor as it can. I accept that there are upsets and I accept that teams can go up and down but suffering from a prolong period of rubbish performance cannot be excused, especially when the injury problem isn’t that big and there are still some descent players on the bench.

    Before this season, we always talk about missing a few good players. Now the team looks fairly good on paper and getting second in EPL should be a reasonable step up from last year.

    The fact is this team has make us without a clue. As a result, we blame the leader: AW. Who else if not AW to bear the responsibility to making the group of players work?

  48. You are of course correct Nicky. Nothing much can be done now except to back them. Jan is now slightly important.
    We do not know what happens behind the scenes, IF Wenger is now as harmful to the team as some suggest, there is no way we would have finished third last season. IF he really has lost the plot, or the dressing room, things will stay as they are…or get even worse. IF he is stubborn with the cash, or the board will not finance him, we will see no new signings in Jan. IF he and Bould get on as badly as some suggest, the latter being allowed no influence, I would expect such a man to resign and fairly soon.
    Many are hurting and want definitive answers. Maybe there are no answers, or maybe they are not for the public domain for a very good reason. All I do know is that Wenger, whatever his faults real or perceived will be working night and day to put things right….it shows on him these days.
    I have a feeling that if things are so wrong in May, Wenger will fall on his sword anyway. And then, maybe write his book

  49. Everyone CALM DOWN, calling the haters and the AKB’s, please keep your head on.

    Yes we lost to Bradford and yes they sit four divisions below. Wenger has done good and bad, however, the bad keeps surfacing it ugly head for the most part of this season. Fingers are being pointed, people screaming and spewing shit and the blame game has started. All I say keep calm, Wenger is hurting, the man has spilt blood for the club and anyone doubting this must be a fool.

    We took a strong team and it didn’t workout, right now the media is milking it for it’s worth. The media ridicule us even if we fielded our youngsters, always the same bullshit “Wenger had a chance for some silverware”, “he fielded kids”. So either way we’re damned.

    Wenger is trying to change things, there isn’t any other reason he doesn’t feel comfortable fielding Chamack and same can be said for the Squid and Arshavin. Wenger was guilty for his undoubted belief in his players, look at Bendtner/Denilson/Vela have all been loaned out Wenger realised they weren’t good enough. Right now people feel the same about Gervinho and believe me he will ship out the dross.

    Our rebuilding period never ends, ever season something crops up, patience is required as well as health warning following the Arsenal. This season will end and only then can we make our judgement. Too many people feel too emotional and the moment, JUST THINK ABOUT IT.

  50. @Walter

    I am pleased that you have sorted out derek, his only interest was to devalue this site; I hope you have time to review rupert and the double talking Doublegooner.

    What is happening is that the AAA scum have developed an orchestrated propaganda campaign as part of the effort to oust AW. We need to see some of these bloggers as they really are and not aid and abet them by providing them with the means to widen their readership. I do not mind a debate about each article – not a problem – but I do resent the constant back stabbing of the team and manager by anti Arsenal interests.

  51. The day has come,these are his players,no tactical ideas,very little passion and the same tripe coming out as the after match interview.This is my 50th year of going man and boy to my beloved Highbury and now the Emirates and have seen all of these desperate cup games attending,Peterborough,Wrexham,Luton and Swindon but honestly feel that last night was the biggest worry,no real forwards and apart from Jack and Santi would happily never see the others again.Sad day and Monsieur Wenger time to fall on your sword.

  52. Well Nicky, that is a depressing thought. That the fans have no influence on the club. That we are all merely minions of the corporate beast.

    But also probably true.

    Interesting use of the word ‘alleged’ as well. Slightly disingenuous for my palate, but interesting nonetheless.

  53. @Mandy Dodd,
    You make an extremely valid point about the continuing valiant efforts by Arsene Wenger to put things right.
    Anyone who thinks that being a football manager is an easy way to earn a living, only has to compare a photo of the person (say) 5 or 10 years ago, with the present day.
    And Arsene is no exception, believe me.

  54. (I am reposting this from another thread)

    Wenger is a great manager; you don’t become a bad manager overnight.

    The problems in football lie much deeper than one man…lol

    (Just as the problems in the world go much deeper than George Bush or Barack Obama. So yes, that person might be part of the problem, but they are not necessarily the whole of the problem)

    Sadly most people like Derek are brainwashed to scapegoat the nearest available target.

    Arsenal’s problems stem from being not allowed to win the league; a clear policy in place for several years, as we know from the bizarre and appalling refereeing.

    Now the players are demoralized, and Wenger doesn’t have the resources to get the players he needs. E.G. SAF got Smalling, we got Vermaelen. This discrepancy in class, between A class players and AB class players is part of the problem. Sure, AW’s attempts to get bargain jewels sometimes backfires, (e.g. Gervinho), but you cannot blame a guy for building a generally top 4 team on a midtable budget…unless of course you brainwashed..

    I guess if you hate paying money for what is on offer, you

    A) stop buying tickets
    B) seek to resolve the deeper problems in football…
    C) rotate managers endlessly a la Chelsea

    B) is actually a reasonable course of action. But it requires a bit of mental effort….

    At some point History will to some extent vindicate Arsene. But for now Arsenal are a club mired in problems. Walcott wants to join the gravy train, and generally Arsenal are in limbo.

    No such doubts beset Man U. They win in all weathers. On the good days, and not so good days. If the ball won’t do the work, some external agency generally massages the desired outcome.

    Football is a very very big industry, and people would be better off looking after their own impoverished resources rather than buying into the bullshit…

  55. its not the one game..its the direction the team has been going in…some fans are blind

  56. Was a season ticket a minimum of £1000 in 1991, I remember going as a kid and the ticket being about £12! Was there £70 million to spend on players in account and instead decided to save it and spend money on utter shit !!!! At £10 million maximum! But equally more than happy to gave players sold for 25/30 million ! Nothing makes sense at the club anymore all that comes out are lies and bullshit statements like last night ” we gave it our all ” or whatever bollocks he said!! The board must go and Wenger must follow their time Is up !! Dein usmanov are arsenal supporters and pep wants a go ! No brainer!!!

  57. Tony! Welcome back. It looks like you’ve been on another planet for the past few months… Let me fill you in:

    The loss to Bradford was NOT an upset. It was little shock to most observers. You see, while you’ve been away, Arsenal’s got used to losing to all sorts of teams…

    Sorry to break the news to you.

  58. Exactly….I was not surprised. The real worry is that the team did put a lot of effort into the game. The quality required is no longer there and we missed three out of five penalties. Many of the so called anti-arsenal arsenal brigade are not basing it upon one game but an obvious gradual decline over the years.

  59. Just when I thought we were back to a decent discussion, Andy pipes up.
    It was great reading the discussion after our win over West Brom. Because when we win all the moaners with a secret agenda don’t bother to comment. Then suddenly we lose (on penalties) and everybody crawls out of the woodwork again.
    I come on this site because I agree with its motto.
    Those who don’t, why don’t you stay away? I skip your comments anyway, but it means it takes me a lot longer to get to the sense.
    I want to see a reasoned analysis of our games from a pro-Arsene Wenger point of view.
    This is because I agree with his philosophy and the way he wants to play football.

  60. bjtgooner, who do you think you are? You’re not living in a fascist state. If people have opinions that differ from yours you should accept that and stop behaving like a spoiled brat.

    You’re like a whinging footballer who tries to get a player sent off by brandishing imaginary cards at the ref.

    Perhaps getting rid of Wenger wouldn’t be a bad idea or are you so brainwashed you can’t even consider that?

  61. Just in case you think I mean you, Andy Bishop, I don’t.
    When I wrote the comment it was just after reading a comment by a different bloke called Andy.
    Who seems to have now disappeared, I don’t know how.

  62. @Marcus, ” Arsenal are not allowed to win the league”. I thought I’d read some bizarre comments on here but that ties for first place with the rather bizarre suggestion that the goalposts were the reason we didn’t score last night.

    Talk about swerving the issue.

  63. Fascist state, spoiled brat, whingeing, brainwashed.
    Emotive words from Rupert Cook.
    A substitute for any kind of argument.

  64. @ DeeDee re: “I find calling for Wenger’s head ridiculous and stupid, but the media are pumping it up again as usual and fans are becoming more and more reckless.”

    Did someone make you think that calling for Wenger’s head is ridiculous, or are you capable of making up your own mind and forming your own opinions?

    Why then (as is inferred here from my view) do you not think that those who are calling for Wenger’s dismissal are not similarly smart enough to make up their own minds and form their own opinions.

    I know it’s nice having a boogey man like the nefarious “media”…but the discontent amongst sects of gooners is genuine, and if anything the media is picking up on that genuine discontent that already exists and running with it, as opposed to forming it to cause trouble and to destabilize AFC….The Media didn’t make up that is is Wenger’s worst start to a prem season, that we have lost our best players every season for the last several, that we are selling to rivals (and making a tidy profit doing so), that the beautiful football product has dramatically diminished (regardless of results), that we rely on injury-prone players far too often, that we haven’t won a piece of silverware in 7-8 seasons while lesser clubs have, that we far too often play players out of position, that we have many players who get paid above their market value and seem content with not playing, etc etc…

    Isn’t possible that some fans can be genuinely upset by these things without it being some dark evil destabilization plot by outside forces?

    I give gooners more credit that they can and do have the smarts to form their own opinions (regardless of what those opinions are, pro, neautral or anti Wenger) more than being manipulated by this mythical nefarious force called the..MEDIA.

  65. Marcus was referring to a long-running analysis and discussion on this web site from the time before you suddenly started to take an interest in it, Rupert Cook.
    Read the back articles if you want to find out what it’s all about.
    But I don’t suppose you do.

  66. So much vitriol against one man…to all those who think that changing the manager is the sole solution to the problem are fools…i do not think that any manager in the world would have willingly sold some of his best talent for no reason.

    Arsene Wenger is a man of principles and is graceful; values that most of us do not possess and at the same time fail to notice it in others…quote me one instance when he has openly criticised his players or anyone else. He has till date not openly made any disparaging remark against some of these talents he nurtured and I can only imagine the hurt he must have felt at these betryals…He could have very easily done a la Mancini and openly spotted the culprits but that his not his style. He is far above all of this…he is protecting his players and I respect him for that.

    Why have our best resources left? Should he not have tweaked our salary structure way back when it became openly evident that it is difficult to retain our talents? Should the manager have not been given more resources even if it was unplanned? Why do players have CL qualification related salary clauses in their wages? You can’t be faulting Wenger for all of this.

    The only telling difference between last season and this is that we had RvP who turned around things for us…did Wenger ask him to leave – No!

    Come on…the issue is about the overall structure and set up of the Club…where the owner and the faceless board too are to be blamed. Leave alone the man…who has been a faithful servant of the club…and maybe it is his genius that inspite of all this we somehow still manage to achieve what ever ‘little’ we have achieved!

  67. So maybe you don’t think people can be manipulated by the media, A. Stewart?
    How naive.
    People are manipulated by the media constantly, and about a lot more important things than football.

  68. @Pat, what argument? bjtgooner thinks he’s god almighty, can call people scum and insult people regularly. What’s to argue?

  69. @ Nicky you keep repeating this..:”I repeat “Remember last season”.

    Yeah I do, we finished 3rd and trophyless once again. That, maintaining the status quo, is actually what most people who are not happy with how things have been going in recent years, have a problem with.

    So like this season our meltdown was at the start of the season as opposed to the Spring when it has more typically occurred in recent years..the net result is the same, qualify for CL places and finish trophyless (unless you consider 4th a trophy like our manager), while the club makes unambiguous statements about money being there to spend if Wenger wants it, and publishes strong revenues and profits.

    So personally, yeah I think that we will qualify once again for the CL, but I see it as no more of an achievement than if we did so with up and down results and no real strong or weak trend, or with a strong start and poor finish..the net result is the same.

    And that stagnation is actually what most who are fed up have and have had a problem with for quite some seasons now. That is, maintaining the status quo.

  70. @Asif, the owner and Gazidis have a lot of responsibility for the current malaise but I don’t think Wenger is blameless.

    Someone else said he had faith in Wenger shipping the dross out. Did he forget that Wenger bought the dross in the first place?

    This team needs a trophy to have any belief in itself. The longer we go without one the harder it’ll be to make the team believe it can win anything.

  71. @ Asif regarding this ode:

    “Arsene Wenger is a man of principles and is graceful; values that most of us do not possess and at the same time fail to notice it in others…quote me one instance when he has openly criticised his players or anyone else. He has till date not openly made any disparaging remark against some of these talents he nurtured and I can only imagine the hurt he must have felt at these betryals…He could have very easily done a la Mancini and openly spotted the culprits but that his not his style. He is far above all of this…he is protecting his players and I respect him for that.”

    Erm you don’t know that Wenger is a more virtuous or principled man than “most of us” heck the guy reportedly had an affair and is probably just as imperfect as the next please spare me.

    Also couldn’t disagree with you more about protecting the players etc …Why is that a good thing? This isn’t parenting, this is the competitive world of modern high level, high paying, high expectation professional football..

    Yesterday Evra was quoted as saying something to the effect of Ferguson will sack them if they FAIL like last year (note fail to them means losing the TITLE on GD after having a few points lead) and that has MOTIVATED them to make sure it doesn’t happen this year (regardless of whether they are ultimately successful or not). This notion that you need to protect and imo baby and mollycoddle highly paid professional men, is being more virtuous, is nonsense imo.

    Further still, I’ve never seen this notion of Wenger being a father figure as a good thing, it has little place for me in what is an ultra competitive professional environment.

    There’s a train of thought that actually being so emotionally invested in players and forgiving and protecting like a parent removes the necessary objectivity and ruthlessness to operate as a top level manager. Sometimes being too close to the situation removes what others (which include former pros btw) may be able see from the outside.

    You may think that’s some kind of good trait or principle I don’t necessarily agree.

    You may think sticking to ones principles no matter what (like Wenger seemingly does) is a good thing, while others may think a person who is able to adjust, change as needed and not be held to rigid ideals in the face of them not working might be a better character trait as a manager and MAN.

    Wenger is a man, as imperfect as the rest of us, and is not bigger than Arsenal Football Club.

  72. To day was one of my worst days ever
    Actually I am not sad or angry about the game any more, you win you lose and you pass
    But I was so sad deep in my heart for mr Wenger’s suffering
    Who knows what us going on in his heart, bad notes every where, complaining and criticism,
    I wonder how he can manage all these pressures

    I wish there was a single communicating way that I could tell him how much I respect him and love him, every body now talking about Pep coming to Arsenal!
    It’s kind of funny cause he could not bear one season being unsuccessful
    But Wenger, this man is made of some hard material, he will never break!

    No matter how hard every body tries to show he is!

  73. @ Persian Gunner…:

    “I wonder how he can manage all these pressures”

    A reported 7.5 million a year salary, a chairman who publicly guarantees him a job for life or as long as he wants it, and being the only manager at an elite club who doesn’t have to deliver trophies to retain his job all go a long way to helping him cope with his “suffering” I’m sure.

  74. @ Andy
    Sounds good.
    Get Dein Back. Promote Usmanov as Chairman. get pep. Replace all the back room staff.Spend £300m on new players. Pay £200,00 a week each.
    Plunge the club into debt then sit back and wait to see what happens next. Maybe it’ll work?
    Seriously. What happens if we don’t suddenly start winning every game?
    What happens to the youth players?
    Do we just become like every other EPL top club? Buy our way out of trouble?
    I support Arsenal because since I started following them I’ve always just thought they were different. Happy about last night? Absolutely not but when I get Home rorm work tonight I’m still going to watch the whole game. It’s why I love supporting Arsenal. To see them play. Good bad or even ugly.
    What else can I do?
    Whine? Complian?
    There’s enough of that around even on UA
    Gooner for life.

  75. @stewart

    You are joking, right?
    I mean PSG is ready to pay him even more than that right now!
    And they can afford buying every one, even neymar!!
    So if you think there is anything, anything more than loyalty, and principles, is holding Wenger in this f..ked up situation, you should really think more my friend!

  76. @ Rupert

    It’s all about winning trophies for you.
    Arsenal draw a game (Villa) and you say “I’m glad I missed watching that crap”
    Or the teams a bunch of clodhoppers.
    You’re no more a supporter of Arsenal than what your average Spud is.
    Everytime you come on here and comment.
    You never even have the decency of talking about the article’s topic. You just spout off you anger and frustration. As if you know better than Arsene. Lat time I checked he was stil the Manger. Hopefully for a long time to come.
    You act like you’re hurt by other peoples comments but in truth you don’t care about Arsenal. You just like moaning.
    Worst type of “supporter” their is.

  77. Beware – Robsons revenge! Stewart Robson is wasting no time – on Sky and Talkshite this eve upping the anti against Wenger. Such a surprise. The big stories, Wenger should have been sacked 5 years ago, feud with him and Bould – SR says Bould a board appointment that Wenger was unhappy with – and a feud with one other (have heard seperatly it is one of the scouts, not Grimandi).
    Whatever the truth or merits, guess we will see it on some back pages

  78. @A Stewert ,
    Yes, I have to keep repeating “Remember last season” because this time last season all the doom and gloom merchants were out in strength, some even predicting relegation. To then finish 3rd and qualifying for the CL after our poor start was indeed an achievement, which 16 other EPL clubs and those in all the lower divisions would have given much to emulate.
    In my humble opinion far too much importance is being attached to this winning of silverware, where the luck of the draw rather than performance is often a deciding factor.
    Many fans are becoming quite paranoid about the need for a trophy, so much so that the Club’s vital entry into the CL year after year is being overlooked as purely routine. This is far from the case.

  79. @Woody, I have an opinion that happens to differ from yours. I’ve seen some absolutely dire performances in the last five years and am not afraid to say so. You seem to think Wenger is some sort of living god. I disagree. All I see from our manager is excuses and nonsensical comments. And an obsession with playing players out of position, a complete disregard for any defensive nous, trusting in lightweight players and injury prone ones and the inability to address the obvious problems in the team.

    Most managers in most leagues would be able to sort some, if not all, of these problems. When people keep reminding me of the genius of Wenger I can’t for the life of me see why he can’t fix these problems.

  80. @Woody, I have an opinion that happens to differ from yours. I’ve seen some absolutely dire performances in the last five years and am not afraid to say so. You seem to think Wenger is some sort of living god. I disagree. All I see from our manager is excuses and nonsensical comments. And an obsession with playing players out of position, a complete disregard for any defensive nous, trusting in lightweight players and injury prone ones and the inability to address the obvious problems in the team.

    Most managers in most leagues would be able to sort some, if not all, of these problems. When people keep reminding me of the genius of Wenger I can’t for the life of me see why he can’t fix these problems.

  81. @Woody, and yes winning trophies is important for a club the size of Arsenal. If you can’t see a correlation between the mental fragility of this team and it’s lack of success I have to doubt your intelligence.

  82. Strange that since the derek has been banned the rupert has been foaming at the mouth – both from the same nest? Strange that they deliberately chose a pro Wenger site on which to unload their anti Wenger bile.

    I don’t think it is worth engaging directly with the rupert, his comments are designed to annoy or frustrate and to undermine this website, I don’t think he is capable of thinking through a serious debate – hopefully Walter’s patience with him will wear out very soon.

  83. Get it right mate it was 1992, if you remember in 1991 we lost to `gazzas’ spurs in the semi, so Wrexham couldn’t have beaten us in Jan 1991. Sorry but I’m in a pedantic mood !!!

  84. @ Rupert
    You’re very quick to call other people names and still look for sympathy when others call you them.
    Whether you doubt my intelligence or not is neither here or there. Definately not for you to decide how intelligent I or Arsene is.
    He’s the manager. Until that changes he decides who plays for Arsenal not you.
    The difference is you know who he is whether you like or agree with him or not.
    Whereas he doesn’t even know you exist.
    I love it when you misquote me. “Arsene. Living God” not in any of my comments I’m afraid. Just because I personally believe he is the right manager for the job. My opinion.
    If he left tomorrow I’d still be as big an Arsenal supporter as I’ve always been.
    Not just when their winning trophies or games.

    Unlike which you have said here:

    The teams full of Clohoppers.
    Glad I missed the Villa match as it was crap.
    Watched a movie which was far more entertaining than watching Arsenal. Etc Etc.
    Doom and gloom moan after moan.
    As far as I’m concerned watching Arsenal play every single game is what being a supporter is all about.
    You Arsenal supporter? I think you’re the type of supporter Arsenal could do without.

  85. I’m not a regular poster on here although I am a regular reader. Some of you will know me, most won’t and the ones that do probably think I’m in the AAA camp although I personally sit somewhere in the middle.

    I think what is clear at the moment is that something is seriously wrong with our beloved Arsenal and it hasn’t happened overnight – it’s been a gradual sleepwalking process for the last 7 years. It is no coincidence that on here, Le-grove, ACLF and others, fans of Arsenal and stalwarts of these respective blogs are all arguing amongst themselves all blaming different factors and defending the view of each blog’s ethos – is it Wenger? Is it the board? Is it the players? Is it the press? I think the truth is none of us really know and that is why the fan-base is so divided at the moment. I like to come here to get away from the arguing and name calling but even on here nowadays it seems the norm. People like bjtgooner constantly abusing others that come on here with a different opinion then calling Tony and Walter to ban people like Rupert who tries his hardest to get his point across but becomes frustrated with the response he gets – I too have got frustrated in the past but it happens on all the blogs and I guess what I’m trying to say is that none of us know what’s really going on and that we all have to be mindful of what environment we’re posting in. This site is very pro-Wenger so the people who believe him to be the problem need to post on here with a bit of respect and thought of what they’re saying, equally as pro-Wengers need to respect when posting on Wenger out sites the general consensus on those blogs. I read a lot of the blogs but this and Le-grove are my favourites because they are poles apart and I love and respect both sides of the Arsenal coin. So why don’t we all try to bring a modicum of decorum when posting, be respectful of others’ opinions and mindful of the general consensus of whatever blog we are posting on. This site used to be a safe house from the playground culture but not anymore it would seem.

    Anyway, that’s me for the night. Let’s hope we can bounce back and get 3 points at the weekend.

  86. yes we lost to bradford – 65 places below us. but its not a surprise. there just does not seem to be any consistency whatsoever. we have the best midfield in the epl yet we can’t convert. someone pointed out that the midfield had more shots on target yesterday than the front three or five. when it takes almost 70 minutes to get a shot on target against the minnows, there is a deep problem.

    we have now lost to norwich, swansea and bradford. the losses are part of football. however we also have squandered 2-0 advantages….twice. the performance is simply not there. we come to a point where we simply cannot say “oh! that’s an easy game”.
    there was effort in that game but notably from only two players- wilshere and cazorla. what were strikers doing there? maybe we should play without a striker like spain did during the euros.

  87. @ Tony /Walter
    Earlier I had the misfortune to watch an interview with (sky sport) Stewart Robson as usual he was full of bile, resentment ,anger toward Arsene Wenger & the Arsenal Board I found his stature toward his former employer appalling and the comments regarding Arsene Wenger were despicable, However today on your site I’ve read similar comments from Derek now is it just by co instance that these appeared on this site early today ( starting Approx 3pm,) and surprise Anti Arsenal Robson spouts out the vomit sometime around 7pm of course I’m not implying conspiracy but it sure does smell fishy

  88. Earlier I had the misfortune to watch an interview with (sky sport) Stewart Robson as usual he was full of bile, resentment ,anger toward Arsene Wenger & the Arsenal Board I found his stature toward his former employer appalling and the comments regarding Arsene Wenger were despicable, However today on your site I’ve read similar comments from Derek now is it just by co incidence that these appeared on this site early today ( starting Approx 3pm,) and surprise Anti Arsenal Robson spouts out the vomit sometime around 7pm of course I’m not implying conspiracy but it sure does smell fishy

  89. @Pat: Spot on, pal. Every time we lose a game, every time we “lose” a player, they crawl out of their miserable holes and sh*t everywhere. Poor environment!

    But do you see that they also would crawl out (very quickly) every time we mention a certain Russian billionair/mafia boss? Not that I say they are all CLONES of a few members of his propaganda team or something. They can be pure idiots or pure sc*mbags. Yes, they can.

  90. @ Gooner Murphy
    Not sure if Derek is Robson but for one thing I’m sure he is just a very unhappy person. Likes to comment and put Arsenal’s problems to right. I always love the “supporters” who have all the answers and like to have their moan and digs at the same time. They almost seem to think that Arsene sends the team out to play every game with a ” go do your worst boys. That’ll irritate the fans”
    I just finished watching the whole match on Arsenal Player as the game wasn’t shown in canada. I honestly believe that as much as we were playing lower opposition. They were out to progress at all costs. After they took the lead they did defend with ten men behind the ball which is always hard to break down no matter who you’re playing. We did have all the best chances and we could have won the game with the last kick of the ball in normal time. In the shoot out. We hit two posts? Unbelievable I know. I don’t think the negative end of the world comments reflect the game. We can’t expect just to turn up and win.No matter which league the team’s in Every team suffers defeats like these even Man. U, City and Chelsea. It happens.
    If we had gone there and been played of the park and beaten 5-0 then yes. Please slate the whole team and the manager but that wasn’t the case. It was just one of those games.
    Whithout being a moaner too. Dean did us no favours at all. Booking gervinho for going up for the ball? it wasn’t like he tried to knock the ball in the net. It just came off his hand. Boooking TV for what looked like a decent header? No he was definately not ever going to give us a fair game. Shock horror.
    Roll on the Reading game next Monday and let’s see how we are in that game.
    Let’s hope we have our shooting boots on in that game as that was all we were really missing. At least Jack looks like he’s getting back to his best.
    Always the optimist.
    Gooner for life.

  91. I watched a program yesterday on the moon landings, which questioned whether they had indeed ever happened. I am a bit agnostic on this one to be honest. As always the dissenters are called “conspiracy theorists” . In the same way people who regard the controlled demolition of tower 7 (which housed a lot of FBI files relating to goverment and corporate fraud) as a fix up are also labelled conspiracy theorists. In fact anyone these days who deviates from state controlled “truth” is labelled a crackpot and conspiracy theorist. Anyhow, seeing Dean’s name somehow reminded me of the the fact I am a conspiracy theorist when it comes to the EPL…..

  92. @Marcus, people went to the moon. If you believe they didn’t then you need to research the facts.

    @Woody, why do you get so het up about the fact I went to see a film and said it was more entertaining than watching Arsenal? It was, so what? You can consider me anything you like, I don’t give a flying fish what you think. This is a public site where now and then debate breaks out between the name calling and rancour, you don’t seem to indulge in much of the former.

    I happen to think Gervinho and Chamakh are clodhoppers and have absolutely no idea why either are in Arsenal colours. I suspect I’m not alone in that judgement.

    I didn’t misquote you, I said you “seem” which is not the same as saying you “believe” Wenger is a living god. It’s what I infer from your blind support.

    Yes sunshine, I get abuse all the time and then I get self-righteous responses from people who started it in the first place claiming I’m abusing them! It’s actually quite amusing.

    Let me ask you this: if Arsenal finish below 8th and win nothing, are you still going to believe in Wenger?

  93. @Woody, and please tell me when Manu, Chelsea or City lost to a League 2 side when they have played a full strength team?

  94. Bill Shankley once said “If you can’t support us when we loose or draw, don’t support us when we win”

  95. @ Tasos @ 9.30am – I’d like to second that.
    So much bile over the last few days .So much to read and sift through and so much to ignore !
    So many posters have appeared like the pox and infested this site .Instead of trying to be symbiotic ,they choose to be parasitic and dare I even say it , cancerous !
    Just a suggestion ,as some of you have a lot to say ,why don’t you start your own site and spew to your heart’s content !
    Maybe we may even drop over for a visit – yeah right !

  96. @bennydevito, a good calm reflective comment. I have no idea why people get so silly and start calling others scum and then others come out and support them. You’d think they’d have the decency to respond with an intelligent argument but what I feel is that when people get abusive they’ve got no argument.

    If we were having a debate at a university and points were met with abuse the abuser would be expelled. Whereas I don’t hold with the view that people should be banned for being abusive it seems others are quite happy to get people banned for having a different opinion. I do wonder if some of these people despise democracy.

    You make some salient points. I think some of our problems are definitely of Wenger’s doing. I don’t see how any objective person can say otherwise. But we also have a completely indifferent owner and Gazidis who seems to delight in selling all our best players, some to the team he supports, so I’m surprised some of the resident conspiracy theorists don’t jump on that.

    It’s true we have no idea what goes on at Arsenal behind the scenes, we can only speculate, but we can see what goes on on the pitch and the team ain’t working. Someone on another blog made the point that Wenger and Gazidis are too cosy with each other and perhaps a bit of friction between the two might yield better results. A little bit of antagonism, as long as it isn’t too strong in which case it can become disabling, can be healthy in working relationships.

  97. Tasos,
    When was Bill Shankley Arsenal’s manager?

    I thought Tony started this site, and thankfully he has a broad mind.

  98. @Tasos, most people on here support Arsenal, otherwise why bother posting here? It’s just that some support Arsenal in a way that others don’t approve of.

    I think many, whether pro-Wenger or not, are just frustrated and want answers. Those that support Wenger can’t understand why he seems to be less of a manager than he used to be, some believe he still is the best for the job and others are just fed up with the tedious routine that every season has become. Other factions exist too but it would take hours to list them all.

    I think it’s hard for some to accept that maybe Wenger is not what he was. I’m sure many Forest fans stuck by Clough even though he was a busted flush. It’s difficult to dismiss Wenger when he has brought so much success to the club. That’s why we get so many defensive and downright abusive responses to those that question Wenger. And why there are daft theories about goalposts being too wide and Arsenal not allowed to win the league.

    I really don’t like this cult of Wenger. I think it’s non productive and rather plastic. Arsenal is not about Arsene Wenger, it’s about Herbert Chapman, Billy Wright, George Graham and every other manager and player etc.

  99. @Andrew

    The reference to the Bill Shankley was a general point.

    Not aimed at anyone in particular.

    Strange then that you should feel a need to question it?

  100. @rupert

    As I’m sure you’re well aware, Brain Clough fought illness through his later life. Drink had gotten the better of the once great manager.

    Not a good comparison.

  101. Tasos,

    The comparison is a very good one, Clough was an incredible manager at the start and then fell away. While he may have had drink issues the real reason he stopped winning was his split with Peter Taylor.

    Wenger’s period in charge has been a dichotomy. Excellent to start and then tailing off.

  102. @Tasos, maybe something has got the better of Wenger. Maybe egomania. But anyway I take your point. Having said that wasn’t it a bit crazy to keep as manager for so long when he was an alcoholic?

  103. lately UA has been featuring in Arsenal Media Watch section. keep on with the positivity

  104. Tasos,

    Clough won major trophies in his career in a partnership with Taylor. After their split in 1982 Clough only managed to win the League Cup twice on his own until he retired in 1994. As a duo they were brilliant, back to back European Cups, with Clough taking the centre stage and Taylor the assistant in the shadows.

  105. Derek, you are full of crap I have to be honest. All I have got from you is that the boards policy of making money is not working so let’s sack Wenger as that will make them change their ways.

  106. Our problem in the match was that we lack the point man up-front. The squad should be judged based on past performances so far this season and not on this particular match against Bradford City because losing to a League Two side is not a big deal, after all, it was 11 against 11 on the pitch and more so penalty shoot-out and they (Bradford) were lucky to come out victorious.

    Why should Arsenal FC should be so criticised for losing to Bradford, have we forgotten so soon that we started the competition alongside Man U, Man City, Liverpool, Tottenham, etc, where are all of them? Or is it because we have not been able to win trophy for the past 7 years? Or is it because everybody has given up on us to win any trophy this season except the League Cup?

    I think the answer to all these questions, is because we are a big club and whenever a big club lose to a lower league club like that, it is always a criticism everywhere.

    It is never the end of the road, we can still get back to winning ways and trophies as well, as soon as we put our scoring problem right.

  107. Bra,bra,bra oh lets bring harry the dick for he has done wonders in each team he as been?? Oh no lets bring Adams for he is the best and then buy Messi,Iniesta,fabgregas oh no lets bring RedNose he is the best in ref tricks no lets bring your mother for she has tactics in cooking oh no lets bring Pele he won the world cup oh no Mara-dona is the guy in all ,Arsene is gona stay ‘like it or not and he will do what he does best 3rd place. Probably next year we will buy the whole of Realmadrid h aha ha ha ha IN ARESENE WE TRUST.Those who feel he that he no-longer the man join MANURE OR SHUT THE FUCK UP.

  108. @ Pat re: “So maybe you don’t think people can be manipulated by the media, A. Stewart?
    How naive.
    People are manipulated by the media constantly, and about a lot more important things than football.

    Perhaps you didn’t read my opinion clearly as it was acutely and deliberately applicable to the situation at Arsenal and those goners having an issue with the Club’s management and direction. I believe their feelings are organic, grassroots and genuine…and have not been created by the evil media in the dark conspiracy to destabilize Wenger. The media is picking up on organic, grassroots and genuine discontent, not forming it. I give gooners more credit that you do obviously, as being able to make up their own minds regardless of what side of the issue they are on. Perhaps you are being manipulated by propaganda from the club’s management and its surrogates pushing a specific agenda..see how silly that sounds now? But best believe they are people who think that those who fully back Wenger’s policies are being manipulated and brainwashed..Luckily, I’m not one of them, and afford you the benefit of the doubt that even if I disagree with your position, your position/opinion is genuine and of your own volition.

    Pretty simple what my point was really. If you want to have a larger discussion on partisan media demagoguery designed at influencing political outcomes on a national, global geopolitical scale, then fine..and yes I’m not that naive to believe that doesn’t occur..


  109. I think there is a general duplicity that people like Rupert are in thrall to.

    If you ask them “Should we kick racism out of football?” they would say
    “Yes, of course”

    If you ask them “Should we kick corruption out of football?” they would say
    “Yes, of course”

    If you ask them “Should we kick slander and lies out of football?” they would say
    “Yes, of course”

    Ok, so we establish a common ground of principles. But then if you point out that AW is simply standing by his principles, and yet is treated very shabbily by the British press and football establishment, (e.g. some managers call him ‘Wenger’ as opposed to Arsene or at least ‘Mr Wenger’, as well as being called a paedophile on the terraces with impunity – whilst anyone shouting racist abuse is picked up) and that in fact you almost wonder if he himself is the victim of a kind of racism, then the principles go out of the window.

    What do you want, principles or no principles?

    If you want no principles, then fine, you can have slander, racism, nobbling, backhanders and general scumminess percolating through the EPL at every level, if not you should realize that Wenger is in many ways simply standing up for what is right and proper.

    For this I have to agree with him. Unfortunately his principled stance brings a lot of flack and detractors in high places.

    Doing the right thing isn’t always convenient, but I get the impression AW has slightly higher principles than certain other factions of the EPL.

  110. @Tasos and @Rupert…. I have been a loyal supporter of Wenger all the years… but wait are you sure Wenger is not Drinking now??? his thinking and tactics have been very strange of recent… wait are you sure Wenger is not Drinking ???

  111. @ Persian re:” @stewart

    You are joking, right?
    I mean PSG is ready to pay him even more than that right now!
    And they can afford buying every one, even neymar!!
    So if you think there is anything, anything more than loyalty, and principles, is holding Wenger in this f..ked up situation, you should really think more my friend!

    Well actually I did think more, and said more and didn’t limit my argument as to what makes it easier for him to deal with his “hurt” down to only his sizeable pay. Not sure how you missed that friend.

    IMO there is no other elite club that will allow for such a sustained period without silverware, what Wenger has at Arsenal is completely unique in that his remit doesn’t seemingly require trophies. Furthermore, at PSG (who has a clearly stated project to buy high and win soon and likely wouldn’t guarantee him publicly a job for life) and Madrid who he was linked to (who have sacked managers who have won things since our last trophy) there is interference in first team matters from other areas of the club hierarchies, such as with Directors of Football, presidents etc. Doubt Wenger would thrive under such an environment. At other elite clubs fans demand success, and wouldn’t tolerate such a drought with the general consistent support Wenger has received from Gooners over the last few years. Moreover you were talking so glowingly of Wenger’s principles and one thing he has always touted (long before the Emirates Stadium etc, the global economic meltdown, and oil money in football) was for his preference to develop teams, youth, and internally over a policy that focuses heavily on spending big for top stars, thus PSG would be the anti-thesis to his stated principles, and would make him look like a hypocrite if he bolted for them….

    So erm hopefully that cleared it up for you that there are a myriad of reason why Wenger has a unique set up at Arsenal that is not only limited to his high pay, and thus makes it easier to deal with the “hurt” you think he is going through…

    Hopefully that meets your standards of really thinking more, my friend.

  112. Furthermore Persian…Wenger has a unique situation that he wouldn’t get at any other elite club, I believe he knows how good he has it, and he would be stupid to leave such a comfortable situation for the other elite clubs that would not afford him the time, patience, interference-free environment, and involvement/control in matters well beyond first team management as he has at AFC. Sure he’s loyal, but he isn’t stupid either. He’d be insane to leave such a cushy situation.

  113. “IMO there is no other elite club that will allow for such a sustained period without silverware”

    A.S , you are labouring under a delusion. Arsenal are not an elite club. Thye briefly became an elite club for a few dizzying years, and then retracted to their present status; they are mid-table mediocrity who have vastly over-achieved for many years.

    When you grasp this, you will my son attain enlightenment.

  114. Marcus,

    Historically speaking Arsenal are an elite English club, having the third most English trophies behind Manchester United and Liverpool.

    The area we don’t show so well on are European trophies.

  115. If Van Persie was available in January would we pay 24 million for him and pay 200K per week. If Fabregas was available in January would we pay 30 million and pay 150K per week. If Nasri was available in January would we pay 22 million for him and pay 200K per week. Would we want these players in our side..Yes. Would we pay No. That is why we no longer have them and gradually lose any world class we have. In January when Walcott goes for 10 million to earn 100K per week and probably win something and Sagna goes for whatever where will we be in the league? In two years time when Wilshire/Oxlade are at their prime and someone offers 40 million for them and 200k per week will we keep them No..Why? From being a winning club who many wanted to play for and not necessarily the most money we are a development and feeder club. Wenger cannot go on forever finding these little gems…players go elsewhere…judging some of his recent signings he is now struggling why? anyone half decent can get more money elsewhere. We missed out on Mata and Hazard we got Cazorla which is a plus but we have a lightweight Gervinho, Chamakh and a struggling Giroud. I am not anti Wenger and a genuine fan but I will not be blind to what is happening. I cannot for the life of me see why so many feel the referees are anti arsenal…they are not the reason for the loss of quality in the squad. The referee was not responsible for three penalty misses in the shoot out or the numerous poor crosses or miskicks in front of goal.

  116. “Historically speaking Arsenal are an elite English club, having the third most English trophies behind Manchester United and Liverpool”.

    Hi Andrew. Historically banks took your money and looked after it. However the world has changed. Banks have become casinos.
    Perhaps Football clubs are like brothels.

    Madame Chi Chi pays her girls $2000 per hour whilst French Lil pays her girls $500 per hour. All the girls now work for Madame Chi Chi, except the ugly ones. Historically French Lil had a spectacularly successful and famous brothel, just off the Moulin Rouge, but the heady days are over. These days the carpets are stained, the curtains faded, and the chandeliers have lost their glory. Many of the girls have the clap and are not regularly checked. But yes, historically, French Lil’s was an elite brothel.

    (All brothels mentioned are figurative and not real)

  117. I’m not cheapening anything. All footballers seem like prostitutes these days, wed to the geyzer with the fattest wallet.

  118. Supporting clubs is very bittersweet these days, I would say 90% bitter 10% sweet.

    The football can still be enjoyable, but your favourite player is kissing the badge in front of you when you are in the terraces, but in the changing room he wipes his arse with that badge, as he plans his move to Fiscal Levitation United.

    Meanwhile you pay a few grand each year so that the young pups can enjoy a life of luxury, in the case of some players, a life in a penthouse in Southampton with regular trips to the knocking shop….

    You’ve gotta laugh as you bust your balls 6 days a week licking the sweat of austerity system, just so a few lucky geysers get the life of O’Riley.

  119. Liverpool have won many many trophies but can they still be considered elite?

    Yet Man City and Chelsea have become members of the elite.

    marcus has a point.

  120. Tasos,
    Yes, Liverpool can just about due to their past, just as we can.

    That is a 100% accurate description of football as it is today. I don’t know when the disconnect occurred but think it’s here to stay.

  121. Marcus feel free to split hairs on a secondary point as to whether one thinks AFC is, was or is longer and elite club. The crux of the argument is for those who say Wenger stays squarely out of loyalty when alleged lucrative offers are available to him elsewhere such as at PSG and at Madrid, the point is at neither of those clubs, or any of Europe’s current elite club’s would he have a the patience afforded to him at AFC, the interferrence free environment into player matters afforded to him, a remit that doesn’t include winning trophies as a real and present priority such as seemingly at AFC, the ability to not spend money available to him on top elite players in preference for developing within and finding lesser known talents, wouldn’t be publicly guaranteed a job for life such as at AFC, involvement in club affairs far beyond his portfolio as a first team manager as seemingly at AFC etc etc, and all the while being paid as one of the highest paid managers in the world.

    So sure he’s loyal, but he isn’t stupid either and knows how UNIQUELY good he has it here, and how he wouldn’t have such a set up at any elite club or any “other” (depending on what suits ones’s preference in the discussion of whether AFC is still elite…pretty immaterial to the overall point).

    Hope that helps.

  122. Again Marcus the point discussed was that Wenger stays squarely out of loyalty when he has had (supposedly) other lucrative offers from elite clubs in Europe such as Madrid (long-time historically elite) and PSG a new member of Europe’s elite due to their enormous wealth, and calibre of player they can get and compete for now, and new project which prioritizes big success in Europe. Regardless of whether Arsenal was, is, or will be part of that elite the point is of the current elite clubs in Europe (the only clubs that can match or exceed Wenger’s salary) none of them will allow him the vast unique comforts he enjoys at Arsenal. So sure while he is loyal to the club, he’s also a smart man and knows that he has a unique situation that he couldn’t get at any elite club, or any other elite club depending on how you see us.

  123. A.Stewart,
    Wenger doesn’t have an interference free time at Arsenal. The board tell him they are selling his best players all the time, he would surely get better elsewhere. Wenger has ambition and it’s too late for him to leave and start over again.

  124. Oh and on the talk of patience, I actually doubt that the board, when committing to the long term plan of the stadium project (which is not yet complete), had expected to win titles until it was all completed. I reckon they had hoped for champions league at best (which is something we hear quite regularly) and maybe the odd cup. There is still time.

  125. @ Andrew Ryan – 13Dec @10.45am – Thanks for that reminder -like many I was under the inpression that this site was paid by ArsenalFC and/or Lord Wenger (Salutations and Prostations unto thee !).
    What ,with all that positivity about Arsenal when there are so many ‘gloom and doom merchants of Robsoneque Stewartship ‘ (copyright pending -my gift to Untold in particular and to the Queen’s English in general !)
    Screaming all over the place ,much rending of clothes ,much pulling of hairs (Robson started early !), many disillusioned
    ‘fans’ leaving our fold (Is that cheering I’m hearing ?),
    and more black scarved waving dissenters !
    But wait ! We still in the FA cup ,CL’sstill last 16 , and away from those dreaded relegation spots – could it be that we may yet be saved ? Praise the Lord !
    As for Tony being broaded minded ,I couldn’t say ,not having met him, but I’ve seen him use a large hat on an earlier photoon this website ! And you know what they say about gents with big/large /broad heads – or was that big noses or big hands ?!

  126. Oh dear ! With all that giggling ,my typing is all haywire !Sorry , should be…. impression that.. ; CL ‘s last 16, and on .. .
    I carry a broad bat and anything short of length will be hooked or pulled to the fence ! And I ‘m not talking only about cricket !
    I also follow that famous American president’s old adage (albeit modified ) ” Walk softly(difficult with my arthritic knees !) , and carry a big schtick !” Sorry Teddy !

  127. @Brickfields, I’m laughing at your mad posts. I’m still waiting for all these supporters who delight in calling me a traitor, or words to that effect, to pledge any money to our Arsenal project. They don’t half talk a good battle but they’re incredibly silent when it calls for a little financial commitment.

    Mind you judging on your recent posts I’m not sure you’re of sane mind. Should I be entrusting any money to you?

  128. @ Rupert -Don’t send money now .Stop.Letter follows .Stop .
    (Just for the information of the younger generation ,that was how we messaged in those days – it was called a telegram)
    I’d wanted to send it by Morse code ( yes , kids its an even earlier form of encrypted messaging – God, I suddenly feel so old!), but couldn’t remember if it was 2 dashes or 2 dittos or 2 hics or 2 burps after all that wine !
    I ‘ll again kick start the ‘fans of Arsenal who want to put their money where their mouth are’ fund when the transfer window opens . As it stands we have the princely sum of 1,500 Pounds in our kitty .
    As for being sane I’m not too sure but I do admit that when I’m posting at work ,my staff and patients do look at me strangely ! Just can’t help myself ,as I think I’m too funny for my own good !

  129. “Marcus feel free to split hairs on a secondary point as to whether one thinks AFC is, was or is longer and elite club.”

    A.Stewart , I dont think its splitting hairs.What do you mean by an elite club? Elite Means the very best, the top strata. so to call AFC an elite club when they aren’t Winning trophies is A contradiction In terms

  130. arsenal are a very big club…wenger hasnt helped by saying winning nothing and coming 4th is some sort of success ,well it isnt finishing 4th is failure, maybe not so much failure if you have a hope of winning the cl which arsenal havnt.I prefer the graham days when arsenal were tough to beat in all games,and in every competition in every season we had chances to win things, this isnt the case under wenger.

  131. dan…sorry i dont wear it, its not a question of patience.Wenger clearly is not the coach he once was,our defence has been poor for the past 5 years at least,he doesnt know how to solve it.he has spent an awful lot a money on ordinary players this cant go on indefinatly.

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