Who wants to work for Chelsea, who would want to come to Arsenal?

By Tony Attwood

Pep Guardiola as we all know, fooled most people by choosing Germany for his next job.  But even with Pep out of the way I suspect Rafael Benítez still doesn’t anticipate staying at Chelsea beyond the end of the season.  So Mr Abramovich perhaps is looking for another manager.  I wonder who he might get.

Apparently (at least according to a couple of mates in the journalist world who I tend to trust a little more than most) there are quite a few managers around who have replied “no” when invited to come to Chelsea.   But I am not quoting my sources here, so you can take this with a pinch of whatnot if you wish.

The problem is of course that the Chelsea owner has now got a reputation for not supporting his managers as much as the managers would like, and although the managers tend to get a nice pay off at the end, the feeling is, such a pay off never does much for one’s career.  Almost 10 years on and he is not satisfied with his manager.   Overall what he doesn’t seem to get is the fact that change takes time.  He acts like an owner for whom there is never any time.

Several papers have commented on the fact that there is increasing consultation between top managers about clubs and what they are like to manage, and the feeling is that managers with styles and approaches as varied as Messers Ferguson and Wenger made their feelings known when asked by Germany bound Pep.  And it seems they didn’t have much good to say.

Ray Wilkins who actually worked at Chelsea weighed in with a few words, saying, “There is a big salary that comes with the job but also the understanding that you could be relieved of the post at any time.  In my case, it was ‘crash, bang, wallop and off you go’. That’s the way he works. Guardiola may well have decided that he didn’t want to be in a situation like that.”

At Chelsea there has been stability, and there has been the success that many Arsenal fans would love to see again – especially the success (if not the style) of the Mourinho era.

And it can be argued that with trophies pouring in, maybe endless managerial changes don’t matter at all.   But of course the thought is always of the future, and it can also be argued that other clubs on the European stage seem to be progressing at a faster rate than Chelsea.

Part of the success is of course down to the players, and some of those have been there a long time.  John Terry let us not forget came up through the youth team – although I can’t think of many who have done so since then – especially in the last ten years.  And if FFP ever does come to pass, a good youth system is surely going to be essential.
But what really fascinates me, is the way the crowd at Chelsea has reflected the attitude of the AAA at Arsenal.  The difference to me (and of course I may well have got this wrong) is that the AAA are in a tiny minority of those attending matches at the Ems, but the equivalent group is in a much larger minority for matches at Stamford Bridge.

Part of this is of course due to Benitez and his time at Liverpool, plus the dismay at the dismissal of Di Matteo.  Unity is now often asked for but not always got because of the sheer dislike of that dismissal and that appointment.

What doesn’t happen though is any booing of Abramovich.  Maybe the Chelsea crowd don’t blame him – after all he has delivered an era of unprecedented trophies.  I don’t have my reference book with me but from memory I think Chelsea won just one championship before Abramovich took over.  Sorry if I have remembered that wrong – but Chelsea don’t have a history akin to Arsenal in the 1930s, and its subsequent brilliance and trophies in the earlier years of Mr Wenger’s reign.

My pals in the know (assuming they are not kidding me) tell me that Abramovich actually liked the Arsenal style of play with Henry and Pires in the side and tried to buy Henry for some incredible sum of money.   But it takes time to put the sort of  revolution that Mr Wenger brought, in place – and those of us who were there each fortnight at the time, remember that we did indeed have to wait a little for both of those players truly to show their worth.  Fortunately we also got one player who fitted in from the moment he gained fitness and started playing: Vieira.

But Arsenal have shown that they can await developments.  On the other hand, as Villas-Boas once said, “At Chelsea, I think another sacking is just like any other day at the office.”

So goodness knows who Chelsea get next.   Or come to that Arsenal.  If Mr Wenger decides he has had enough of the AAA who would we get.

Michael Laudrup, Jürgen Klopp, Diego Simeone, and Joachim Löw are all names bandied around.  If style is no longer an issue then the name Mourinho turns up quite a lot too.  It could be any of those guys.  But would they want to come and face a club with the AAA doing its stuff all day long?  I begin to wonder.

Footnote:  During the course of 21st/22nd Jan the site has been bombarded with comments, many of which are from false email addresses, many of which are repeats of other comments.   Our general rules of discussion state that both of these actions are liable to get the post removed, as will posts which are simply abuse.  It is of course fine to argue against anything written here, but abuse, or indeed simply saying this is wrong, without putting up evidence, isn’t really helpful.   I am sorry that I have not been able to edit out all the offending commentaries – time has simply overtaken me.  But at least all the extra hits will have helped keep us at the top of the rankings, and kept our audience figures up, which in turn helps the advertising revenue.   So pain though it might be to fight through some of these commentaries, they do at least serve a purpose (although I must admit I would by and larger sooner not have them here.)


The books…

The sites…

58 Replies to “Who wants to work for Chelsea, who would want to come to Arsenal?”

  1. Arsenal Fans – take a look at your own problems rather than ours. Your club is in a mess due to Wenger and lets face it – will you ever win the Champions League….doubt it not with that defence. Regards London’s First London’s Finest

  2. Money always talks. They will be paid well at Chelsea. They will be paid well when they leave Chelsea. History tells us that they will make good money at their next job as well. There were reports that had Mou, Ancelotti, Guus, and AVB as the #1, #2, #6, and #13 highest paid managers in the world at the start of this season. I don’t think I’d put too much in your journo friends…Chelsea will still get a decent manager next season.

  3. Just like your manager you can’t stop talking about chelsea — incidentally make mine a double — as for you guys well wenger’s job is not to manage the team its to manage the fans so they don’t start to wonder where the money goes( into the directors and managers pocket) or why the season tickets are so high or the food prices so expensive and why the team still has the same problems it had 5 years ago ( no plan B soft underbelly) — wise up fellas you’re being played for suckers. Roman might make mistakes but he doesn’t steal from us — as for the new manager every time chelsea sack someone some donkey says who’ll work for Roman and surprise surprise the best managers continue to want to, perhaps because they know roman will spend some money on the team!

  4. I find it strange that you are refering to tropies from as far back as 1930’s in your article when I doubt you were around then to see them?
    In more recent times your trophy cabinet has been a bit sparce its true enough (and perhaps like Liverpool you relish in our history at every chance) & that’s the real reason why you hark back to the golden days.
    Much is said about the Mourinio era and the so called boring style – well I am sure you will recall the highest goal tally of the premier league era when Mourinio gave us his first premier league crown. When we used Robben (later sold from Mourinio against his wishes) and Duff were key players we scored goals for fun whilst not conceeding.
    Not many teams can say that truely they have found great quality from the youth ranks either – most of us go and steal them from other clubs at a young age The Ox, Fab, Wallcott for you Bale etc and we too are just as guilty in that respect. We do have some great prospects in our youth team how many came even from the UK or started with us as boys is another issue and one that is pandemic across all youth teams and goes to show why our national team is so poor.
    I have it on the best authority that Mourinio had lined up Mica Richards in the early days and ultimately being over ruled on him Sheva & Ballack not to mention Robben caused his demise not the style of play. Add to that we were paying top dollar for Champions League qualifying games shown on TV against minor oposition – hence the low attendances. To blame those on Mourinio is way off the mark even as a season ticket holder of some 20 years (yes when we were crap)I was reluctant to go to all of those group games.
    Pep spoke to Fergie about managing Chelsea oh please!!! Anyone both in and out of the game would know the story lately at Chelsea nice pay while it lasts and the managerial policy lately has been embarasing I have to admit but honestly I could see the reason for all of those sackings – remember I watched every game we won the double or were we gifted it that year by Manure and yourselves we limped over that line and watched some poor games.
    Mourinio – Yes he is arrogant attention seeking etc etc but any premiership club let alone many other clubs in Europe will greet him with open arms as well you would I am certain.

  5. What are you going and who are you going to write for, after holy grail Wenger will be out and busy spending the fortune he made out of nothing.
    Are you still going to write for his past holy grail success that he never made.

  6. Tony writes:

    ‘Apparently (at least according to a couple of mates in the journalist world who I tend to trust a little more than most) there are quite a few managers around who have replied “no” when invited to come to Chelsea. But I am not quoting my sources here, so you can take this with a pinch of whatnot if you wish’

    BJT will !!

  7. I believed Abramovich has learnt his lesson. But something gets me worried. The last time Torres was subtituted, I saw Abramovich himself clapping for him despite his poor performance and I begin to wonder what is it about this Torres with Abramovich.

  8. I dread to think who we will get the when wenger calls it a day. Philippe auclair said on the recent arseblog podcast …Ithink it was that anyway….that the board lacked the skillset to appoint a successor. So he thinks wenger and his coaches are the only people managing the club with a clue about football. Auclair said he had no inside knowledge on this but thought they might go for Martinez or lucien favre. If true, very different to those on the list of those who would have wenger out.

  9. I thought it was common knowledge that in 2003 or 2004, Chelsea called up Arsenal to offer 50m pounds for Henry. Maybe I’m wrong about that, but that seems to be what I recall was well known.

    There is no doubt Chelsea want to be like Arsenal, and replicate all the things that Wenger revolutionised here. Chelsea have invested heavily in their youth set-up as well. Of course, for players to break through there is going to be tougher because they just go out and spend vast sums of money on getting someone in, and no manager gets the time and freedom to nurture players through their development.

    It’s also not surprising at all that some managers would decline the chance to manage there. As regards Guardiola, I’ve always felt he’s going to go to ManU. He’s going to have legitimate history behind him and not be accused of simply buying the title, and also have the freedom that he won’t get at Chelsea or City. Arsenal could offer him both those things, but probably not as much money as ManU. So he’ll pick them. City will get Mourinho. Just wait and watch. 🙂

  10. Mandy,

    There was a discussion about this on some other blog and there were some interesting names there. Martinez is actually a fair shout. Klopp is also often mentioned. Remi Garde too.(Could it be he becomes Wenger’s first AND last signing at Arsenal?)

    But while thinking about this, I just felt that maybe the best route to take after Arsene Wenger’s reign, would be to appoint some experienced coach for the slightly shorter term. Maybe someone like Bielsa, Ancellotti or Pellegrini? Because whoever comes in, Arsene Wenger’s legacy will be a huge burden on them. His shadow will loom over every aspect of the club. Maybe it’s best to let someone already experienced and with his own name (but obviously aligned with Arsenal’s philosophy) take charge for say 5 years, to allow the club to move on from the Wenger era. After which, we can appoint the real long term successor. Just a thought.

  11. Youth development is what leads to a team’s philosophy. Barcalona leads all other teams in this and that is why they are always a good team. Arsenal is next on the line both operate in a different environment. It is difficult to see a barca player cross over to real madrid or vice versa no matter how much is offered. In the EPL, city and chelsea have successfully killed youth development as they are prepard to pay very absurd amounts for any player. So they want finished products since they have the money but not the time and patience to develop. So teams like Arsenal that have no father christmas runs into trouble. They develop players and rich entice them away. At the end, the EPL has not influenced positively the Englan national team the way la liga has influenced the spanish national team. There must be some sort of restrictions otherwise the mega rich russian and arab will kill the English national team completely through the importation of foeigners at huge amounts. Most palyers come to city and chelsea today for the money, not minding sitting in the crowds. How is that helping the English national team?

  12. Agree Shard, think we will need an experienced coach. He will have a very very tough job. Cannot see klopp leaving Germany. Maybe those names you mention , or J Lowe? Or would the board go nearer to home with bould assisted by an attacking legend like Dennis who would at least start with the fans onside? I like Martinez, but he would not be my choice to manage this club at this stage, nor would Garde.

  13. Have I missed something, is wenger stepping down? I’m pretty positive Wenger already has someone in his eyes, and I’m sure the club knows who.

    But in the mean time Wenger isn’t going any where!

  14. Shard,
    Yes, I seem to remember £50 Million for Henry and at the same time, £50 Million for Vieira being offered by RA, at least that’s what the papers said and they are always to be trusted.

  15. Well the AAA is a tiny minority but according to you will be the reason for wengers resignation and probably the reason why a good coach won’t come to the ems? So the mega majority that is the AKBs cannot make any difference whatsoever? Well I thought so too.

  16. Interesting how many have have conflicting views with Untold have recently started feeling the need to come out of the woodwork.

  17. Pretty sure Wenger will see out his contract whatever opposing groups of fans think barring something unforeseen. Wenger surely deserves to enjoy us moving into a much healtier more stable situation after the stadium, board changes, the Global recession, property crashes, sugar daddies, well resourced predators, disloyal players,wage inflation, press…..and other agendas. After the contract runs out, all is in the lap probably firstly of Wenger, secondly of the board and none of us know what will happen then, just speculating on possible replacements and on how hard their job will be.Personally, think it will be Wenger alone who decides when he goes, as it should be.

  18. Well those sacked managers haven’t exactly harmed their careers have they? Mourinho – Real Madrid (he’s done a bit more in between!!), Scolari – Brazil, Hiddink – Russia, AVB – well you north London boys will know about that other team above you…as for Chelsea’s youth set up, another comment hits the nail when you’re signing top stars (including major flops) its harder to break through despite which they’ve won the FA Youth Cup twice in the last three years & had (at one time) 23 youngsters on loan. So be happy being a succesful accountancy firm, watch whilst FFP stops anyone else breaking into the ‘elite’ because you’ll never see the likes of Blackburn’s success again. The usual subjects have closed that trap door…oh and will your next manager have a financial stake in the club too? Funny how he’s reluctant to spend that transfer pot.

  19. @Mandy

    You make a good point – Wenger has nurtured Arsenal through a very difficult financial period, I don’t think any other manager could have achieved the same success with the same restriction. I believe it would be appropriate for Wenger to take the club forward into the next phase when more money will be available.

    The AAA scum would disagree with this viewpoint, one of the points they make concerns Wenger’s age – but he he is younger than ‘Arry and much younger than Red Nose – so I don’t accept age is a problem. Ideally, Wenger should be offered at least one more contract extension during which the future management of the club can be reviewed.

  20. Stevep, the conventional wisdom of many is that failure to spend the transfer pot now will cost the club money, so if he really has a financial stake, he would be out there buying anything that moves like some sort of arry redknapp if you will?

  21. Think he will be offered an extension bjt, but whether he will accept is anyone’s guess, will probably depend how he competes against clubs that would end up insolvent without their owners. Will also depend on whether he thinks he can run the club as a developmental manager in the current climate….and ffp climate, whatever that actually delivers. Still think wenger has a trick or two up his sleeve this season.

  22. One who clearly did not want to come to work for Arsenal. Critics will have a go that we lost out to Newcatle showing more ambition and decisiveness, a bit like they did with Holtby…But


    Looks like a bullet dodged, bet that is the case with a lot of players we get linked with, or look at….whatever that means…..

  23. @Shard,

    Do you think Wengers era will end when Wenger steps down. I donth think so. I personally think, Chapmans era came to an end only when Wenger stepped in. The rest, even Graham had to live in Chapmans shadow. I think it will take another century when Gooners will see a revolutionary stage in ARSENALs history. Wengers legacy will live on.

    @ Mandy,

    My gut feeling is that he will be offered and extention and he will accept it to go on till 2020. ONE thing is for sure. ARSENAL is in his blood, and this will be the last club he will work for.

  24. Interesting link Mandy Dodd.

    Reading that he sure didn’t seem to have Arsenal-DNA. We have had enough of those…

  25. I hope there are no plans by the board to give Wenger another contract extension. Just let him see out his contract in 2014.

  26. Do I sense a change in tact from Untold?! You’ve dropped the “lord wenger” nonsense from your headline, now choosing to support the manager (implying whoever it may be). You also talk about the post-Wenger era. I congratulate you for realizing that despite AW’s immense services to the club, he is after all only human and should not be treated God-like. Thank you, I feel like I can once again enjoy reading Untold.

    It tells a story when even Tony has run out of ways to cover the cracks in Arsenal’s deficiencies. Sad but true.

  27. Arsenal 13

    I said Wenger’s legacy will be felt in every aspect of the club once he leaves. It is simply unbelievable the way he has transformed the club. I find it strange that you pose that question to me, since I’ve always said the same. If you mean what I said about moving on from the Wenger era, I just meant following Wenger will be very tough on any manager (though Wenger will leave the club in great shape for him)and thus perhaps it would be best to give the job to someone who already has made a name in management rather than a young successor for the long term.

    But as has been pointed out, Wenger’s reign is not over. He still has till the end of next season on his contract, and I genuinely hope he gets to stay another 3-5 years after that, at least. My guess is, he’s working on the principle that 2014 is the year that Arsenal get to throw off the financial shackles, and once he determines what the club’s intentions are at that point, he will decide whether to stay or not. But that’s just a guess.

  28. Mandy

    Speaking of Harry Redknapp. Can we put a bet somewhere on QPR going belly-up within the next 5-6 years?

  29. So a tiny minority of this mythical group are going to drive Wenger out? Seriously, are you crazy?

    Manu have their own “scarf movement” but I don’t see Fergie going anywhere. Of course that’s due to the fact that Manu actually deliver on the field of play.

    Most clubs who are under performing have a section of fans who are disgruntled. I suspect some Pool fans have doubts about Rogers. Do managers leave clubs due to a minority of fans? Even the Blackburn manager stayed despite what seemed to be a majority wanting him out.

    There’ll be plenty of candidates for the Arsenal job when Wenger leaves. A nice financial package with no pressure other than to deliver a handsome profit every year should be enough to entice many a manager.

    What seems more obvious every day, especially with what seems to be our complete lack of activity in the transfer market, is the fact that our owner, Gazidis, the board etc. seem quite content with stagnation on the pitch as long as it doesn’t affect the improving bank balance. Wenger it seems is the perfect antidote for the baying screams of frustrated fans. He’s still revered by many for his early brilliance so it’s difficult to blame him for the current malaise. Most would like him to change just a little bit but would hate to see him sacked. In other words most fans appear to be sitting on the fence regards Wenger.

    What should worry most, and Mandy pointed this out, is that once Wenger is gone just how much faith has anyone in the powers that be at Arsenal finding a suitable replacement. I don’t think Gazidis or Kronke would have a clue who to appoint as the next manager. I also think that both of them are highly dubious characters. I maybe being unfair but my gut feeling is that both of them want minimum investment and the return they want from their niggardly approach is finishing fourth and no more. I don’t think either of them could care less whether Arsenal win the league. They even have contingency plans if we don’t finish fourth. These types are tainting our club with their false love.

    They think Wenger is the perfect man for their sly plans. He delivers just the minimum with a limited budget. Even when he’s promised money to spend he’s reluctant to use it. He’s the perfect foil for them because whilst they get on raking in the profits they’ve got what nearly every Arsenal fan sees as an honourable man taking all the flak from the fans and able to do so for his fabulous first seven years and what appears to be his love of the club.

    It looks like things may go awry as Wenger is no longer the genius in the transfer market he once was. His abilities are looking worn and wasted. If he fails to improve the club in this transfer window his contract should certainly not be extended. It’ll be interesting to see what’ll happen if we finish fifth or lower. I don’t think Wenger will be sacked because that wouldn’t serve the purpose of those above him but I think Wenger should leave of his own accord because I feel he must be tired of being used, which I suspect he probably thinks he is. If he does know he’s being used then I have no idea what he’s hanging around at Arsenal for. Maybe out of sincerity to his own beliefs, the love of AFC or simply because he picks up 7 million a year.

  30. Apparently having contingency plans for the club is a bad thing, as is the club making profits.

  31. @Shard, you think the financial restraints will be off? With Kronke and Gazidis pulling the strings? I don’t think so. Arsenal won’t be outspending Chelsea, City or even Manu. They’ve never done before and I seriously doubt they will in the future, FFP or no.

    As I said above those in charge at AFC don’t care about us winning anything as long as we’re making money.

  32. @Shard, of course not but tell me which successful club makes profits? Our model at this time is about buying cheap, hoping these cheap players come good and then selling them. You don’t build a successful team like that.

    Sometimes you have to take a financial hit short term to benefit long term. Prime example is if we had kept RVP we’d be more assured of finishing fourth but we made some quick money but stand to lose more by not making the CL.

  33. When did I say we will outspend ManCity. That is simply impossible if their current level of spending continues. And if it does, and Chelsea’s stays the same way, Arsenal fans better get used to fighting for 3rd and 4th along with ManU. We should be able to reach ManU’s level of spending, or being just short of it. Especially, because the Glazers will keep leeching off ManU. Of course, at some point Kroenke (and Usmanov) might decide to do the same to us.

    And yes. I think financial restrictions will ease. Arsenal have traditionally been big spenders. Bergkamp was a British record buy. Campbell (due to his free transfer) was on the highest wages in the league. Wiltord and Reyes were big money buys, as was Henry. The years we haven’t spent big (with the exception of Arshavin) have been the years of the stadium move.

    As for not caring if we win as long as we make money. Tell me what they’re doing with the money. You know, Arsenal’s money. Are they just boosting the share price for an eventual sale? Is Arsenal collateral in any other business venture of Kroneke’s? Yeah, possible. But so is them waiting for a time when more money is assured (commercial/tv deals), wage structure’s been realigned, FFP comes in, allowing them to have a significant advantage over other clubs to make a real push for it, instead of buying players who will simply add to the squad without significantly boosting our chances of a title victory.

  34. Sometimes you have to take a hit in the position in the table to secure a better future at the top.

  35. It amuses me how the people talking about spending money think they talk about the long term.

  36. @Shard, but when we bought those expensive players neither Kronke or Gazidis were involved.

    Of course you think about the long term when spending money. You buy better players, you win more trophies and finish higher therefore making more profits through success on the pitch. Your club makes money by being successful on the world stage. Arsenal are rapidly losing that identity.

    I laughed when Gazidis said that the Arsenal way is what the fans want. The arrogance of the man. How long has this City fan supported Arsenal. He hasn’t a clue. Fans aren’t interested in Arsenal stashing money away and refusing to spend it. They want to see their team win trophies. Now if we were Stoke or Reading we wouldn’t expect that but we’re a rich club with some history of actually winning things.

    That doesn’t mean fans expect trophies every year but they like to believe they could win something. Nearly all Arsenal fans I know and nearly all the blogs I visit have absolutely no belief in us winning anything. As for being league contenders, well we’re a million miles away.

    And tell me, what do you think these contingency plans are if we don’t make the CL? Because they would involve spending money, would they not? A hefty amount I imagine. Well wouldn’t it be better to spend big now to ensure we get fourth rather than miss out which seems a distinct possibility? Because that investment now would cost us less in the long term.

  37. tony sir,
    if anybody was to come to arsenal i think they’d state that arsenal is a big club and in keeping with that they’d want funds they deem necessary to purchase players of a better pedigree than the ones currently available..question is would the almighty BOARD agree to this??
    the situation at chelsea has been deemed untenable by an owner playing ‘house’ with a football club hence no one whose credible wants that job..

  38. Arshvin’s purchase demonstrated that Arsenal are well aware of the need to spend when required rather than wait and then have to spend more.

    True, Gazidis and Kroenke weren’t involved in those days. But it is also true that when they have been involved has been when the stadium move has been felt. So although it is guesswork to say they will allow the club to spend, it is also guesswork to say that they won’t. Especially in the absence of a convincing hypothesis of why they wouldn’t.

    And yes, I agree we should buy two players right now. But regardless of whether we do or not, I still don’t doubt the overall vision of the club (at least as of now) 2014 will be a cutoff of sorts because there will be a total of around 65m extra coming in (including tv deals), although we might even start spending more by summer, since tv deals kick in, and some of the Emirates money has been brought forward.

    And not just Gazidis, but Tom Fox has mentioned it too that fans respect the Arsenal way. And although the shoutings would make you think otherwise, (as well as most fans would want signings/trophies), it is true that most Arsenal fans appreciate Arsenal not being run in a manner like Chelsea or ManCity. The discontent is more ‘tactical’ than ‘strategic’.

  39. @ shard..working with a new crop of players (of course not across the board) would aid in changing of tactics and strategy…
    arsenal way may be admired but the truth is the sport is continuously being awash with cash and this s also happening in other sports.. as long as teams are expanding their brands money will continue flowing in and players knowing that their star status is the basis of the growth of these brands will continue asking for bigger salaries,image rights etc etc
    so spending is and will continue growing..
    spending more money gets you better players i.e van persie to manU= being on top of the league and perhaps the better the players at your disposal th better the tactics at your disposal

  40. Edu

    And that is why spending has to increase. But not just on purchases. Also on retention (that has been our major problem, not buying) which has already happened with the likes of Gibbs, Wilshere, Ramsey, Walcott etc. Add in Szczesny, Vermaelen, Koscielny, and the newer purchases of Arteta, Mertesacker, Cazorla, Podolski and Giroud, and we have the basis of a very good side there, which we must keep, and yes build on.

    I’m not arguing against spending money. I just think that though we might see it happen before 2014, till then, I can be patient and understand why we might not be spending as much.

    The signs of increased spending are already there though. Both the age of the players we’ve bought the last two years (which means lesser resale value) and the players being tied down to longer term contracts are signs of increased outlay by the club. Can we go further and add increased spending on buying and wages of certain players. I think we will, in the next 2 years.

  41. @Shard, I think the discontent is multi-varied. Some think Wenger’s lost it, a view I hold these days, others think that Kronke has absolutely no interest in the club, quite possible, at least with regard to on field success, and some despise the bean counter mentality of Gazidis and his ilk.

    As for not being run like City or Chelsea, well the latter I can understand. City, well I don’t think there’s anything wrong with their way. Most fans are just jealous that they have owners who want City to win things. Would we be worried if Kronke suddenly gave Wenger 100 million to spend? I don’t think so. I’m sure there’s a moral argument to the way those two are run but this is the real world and business is quite averse to scruples.

    Why wouldn’t they spend? Well why should they? They’ve seen Wenger get the minimum required on a low budget and they assume he can do that again and again. Only it’s not looking so certain anymore.

    Where we differ is I am entirely suspicious of the motives of Kronke and Gazidis. An ambitious club doesn’t sell its star player to its rivals and gives the reason as footballing reasons, whatever that means. I mean that’s why you sell any player because the club buying him thinks he’s a good footballer so that’s a daft statement. Now if those reasons for selling RVP were down to the fact that he was unsettling the team because he was demanding more ambition from all around him, then that’s a good reason for selling him. I expect no footballer at a big club wants to hear his manager trot out “fourth is like winning a trophy”.

    As I said before do you think Kronke or Gazidis is going to do cartwheels if Arsenal win the league? And these people think they know what Arsenal fans want?

    Anyway time will tell. I hope you’re right and I’m wrong. Really I have no stronger wish to be wrong about this than anything else. I just hope that two years from now Wilshire won’t be sold for a nice hefty profit and Arsenal fans will be shouting traitor at him when the real culprits will be those sitting in the executive seats quaffing champagne.

  42. @ shard.,it would also help if we got..diaby-crock,arshavin-past his best for arsenal in the position his played,santos-liability in defense always caught out,fabianski-aka flapianski,squillaci-do i need a reason and sadly rosicky is always in the sick room even before he comes to the field..of our wage bill and others who we are just not honest enough to admit to ourselves..
    who we retain and their value on and off the field is also critical.no need retaining players who cant win you anything.

  43. SO while worrying about 2 years from now lets already be up in arms against the club we’re supposed to support. Yeah, those running the club might ruin it. Those running our country or the world might ruin those too. Why don’t we all just becomes rebels fighting against everyone who controls something we ‘care’ about?

    And willfully misrepresenting or misunderstanding what Wenger means when he says fourth is like a trophy is highly obtuse. If you had to draw a list of objectives for the club in a season, how would you do it? Me..I would do it the same as Wenger. 1)win PL, 2)win Cl 3)qualify for CL 4)win FA cup 5) win league cup There’s nothing wrong in saying that is a higher priority than winning the latter two.

    Heh. Jealous of City? And actually wanting to be like them? Maybe in moments of weakness, but City’s ‘wealth’ is disruptive for all of football, including for fans. Arsenal’s way is not. Yet, Arsenal are supposedly in the wrong here.

    Why should they spend? Apparently winning is for the long term benefit of the club (you’ve yourself said this) and that this will increase the money coming in (something which you ascribe as their motive). So again, why not?

    Just because you mistrust them, doesn’t mean you are right in ascribing any motives to them. It’s all conjecture there, and as I said, the signs of increased spending are there in any case. And yes, one factor in all this is Wenger. I believe he cares about the club enough to not let it decline. He may just be an employee (although he’s also supposedly too powerful) but he seems to believe in the club’s model, and seems to be willing to see it through. That counters the mistrust and leads to trust, because Wenger has earned it. Is that naive? Maybe. But it is better than not trusting in any aspect of something you claim to support.

  44. Edu

    Exactly why I said 2 years. A lot of the ‘deadwood’ would be gone by then too, helping us in realigning our payment policies.

  45. @Shard, I don’t see why distrusting the motives of those running our club is seen as non-support. Arsenal is more than just Kronke, Wenger and co. It’s about a whole history and I’m not sure types like Kronke and co are aware of this.

    I support a certain political party but it doesn’t mean I agree with all its policies. Who would?

    I understand exactly what Wenger meant but I’m afraid it’s all a bit hollow when the team is not sufficiently strong enough to win the CL anyway. Whilst it could probably win the FA Cup as long we avoid Bradford.

    Why is City’s way disruptive of football? Because it means Arsenal are now priced out of the market? I don’t see it being disruptive for City fans. Barca, Real Madrid, they’re all disruptive of football going by that logic.

    But I’d love to see a level playing field where everyone could afford the best players, but that has never happened and probably never will.

    On principle I agree with most of what you say. But I also believe what I believe and yes it’s a lot of conjecture but most things are unless one has a complete insider’s knowledge.

  46. Ok..I’m done debating. But just as a final recap.. There are 2 ways to look at this

    1) Arsenal are doing the best they can within their chosen philosophy

    Within this what all has happened and what I think could happen
    a) Arsenal have had their players enticed away for higher wages/trophies/homesickness, indicating we have to improve our player retention.
    b)Arsenal have reinvested a lot of the money received from said player sales into buying players of a higher age and higher profile) and their salaries over the last 2 years. This indicates a willingness to spend money without much chance of recouping it.
    c)Having bought the more readymade players (which means they’ll be on relatively long contracts), Arsenal have given new contracts to players they expect to build their team around. Wilshere, Vermaelen, Walcott etc. Thus an attempt to improve the problem of retention
    d) The legacy of the stadium move needing us to pay players on potential rather than ability means we have certain players in our squad we don’t want, on relatively high wages. Their contracts will run out soon or they’ll be sold.
    e) More money will come into the club soon
    f) All of this could equal a push for the title in future years since having a stable team is actually the first step towards it (something we haven’t had for some time, and have improved whenever we have had)

    2. The other way of looking at it is that Arsenal’s leadership don’t care about Arsenal and are looking to bleed us dry.

    I’ll let those that believe in this specify what they think has been happening and will happen at Arsenal. In my view though, this view is founded not on caution (which is necessary) but on fear. A fear nurtured and advanced over the years by the mainstream media telling us how useless we are.

    There is also a Third way in which you can argue that Arsenal’s philosophy itself is wrong, but I won’t get into that for now.

  47. Last word from me

    Prioritising Cup competitions would be risky in the extreme since there is a lot more luck involved than the league (at least if you discount the ref effect) What if the FA Cup is prioritised and in a semi final or final, you come up against a team that’s simply in the form of its life, or you have too many injuries just on that day, or you get a player wrongly sent off, or the opposition gets awarded two penalties for no reason. Your entire season becomes worthless.

    Prioritising the league thus has to be higher, and the CL is higher because of the prestige and the money (both are linked anyway) associated with it.

  48. ok..now the last word (I promise)

    If you can’t figure out how City’s activities are disruptive to football rupert, then you are not as smart as you seem to think you are.

  49. shard, i can tell what will happen at arsenal,unless and until UEFA enforces the FFP,clubs will continue spending and arsenal will continue to be left behind (in terms of “quality players|” -wengers quality nowadays leaves alot to be desired bar santi) except for the beautiful stadium..the ‘top 4 trophy’ will be a thing of the past and the club after 10yrs without a trophy the club will mutually agree to go separate ways with wenger..most fans will be happy at untold several will cry but atleast the trophyless years will come to an end.}END

  50. @Shard, I was just wondering what your take was on City’s disruption to football. I’ve seen many City fans claim that because of the investment in their club there has been a regeneration in the area. But what do you think is disruptive about City in comparison to say someone like Barca?

  51. Also why on earth do we need to prioritize cup competitions? Aren’t we good enough to fight on all fronts?

  52. Ruoert Cook
    Ironically, I’m sure I recall you having posted previously that we should prioritise one of the cup competitions

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