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Where next for Arsenal?

By Tony Attwood

There is a new theme in the papers today – Wenger has taken Arsenal as far as he can – it is time for Arsenal to move up to another level with another man.

It was exactly the theme we used to hear about Charlton Athletic, who in n 1995,  appointed Alan Curbishley.  Within nine years he had the eternal little team of south London who had been without a ground for so long, on the edge of getting a Champions League place.

The club didn’t get there and slipped a little and the fans started their mantra of needing a new man to take the club to the next level.   He went and by 2008 they were in the third division.

My point is not that Arsenal are like Charlton or that Arsene Wenger is like Alan Curbishley, but rather that the whole thing about “take to another level” is a piece of nonsensical whimsy spouted by people who carry no responsibility and whose entire raison d’etre is to whip up the mob.

“To the next level” is the same as saying Cesc has Barcelona in his DNA.   No, you have genetic material in your DNA not a city with some nice architecture every now and then.

If you do want to use the silly “next level” phrase, you could say that every season Arsene Wenger takes Arsenal to the next level by improving on our win percentage.  The problem, the thing that stops us having another half dozen doubles and three more unbeaten seasons, is that certain clubs are spending insane amounts of money while Arsenal is not.

And the interesting thing is that it doesn’t guarantee them the chance to win every match.

Meanwhile, Man City, Liverpool and Chelsea are confident that they can beat the FFP system either because the Daily Mirror says Liverpool don’t have to meet the criteria for next season, or because their lawyers are sharper than Uefa’s, or because creative accounting will always win the day.   If that is the route you want for a club, of course go and support one of those three – they seem to welcome everyone.

If you want a model for a club that is going to break through to the very top without that sort of financial doping, but by changing the manager every season or two, then Tottenham is there waiting for your support.

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But if you want to focus not on the overall context but instead on an individual result and the simplistic change that supposedly would improve everything then the AAA and the sunday press are there waiting for you with open arms.

However a change of manager for Arsenal would not make a slightest bit of difference because whoever we got in would still have to face the fact that three clubs are ignoring FFP and hoping for the best, and we are being kicked to death by other teams without those teams suffering the normal penalties.   The figures, now available for the first time, prove that Arsenal suffer far more contact injuries than anyone else, and the players who deliver those injuries are not being dealt with.

In fact I think we are following the right procedure, but it is taking a little time.  However in the next year or two we will see it come to fruition.

The simplest answer is to buy new players and discard what we have.   One wonders what might have happened in the past if we had done that.   Giroud is operating at the same level as Thierry Henry did after two years, so I guess the AAAs who want Giroud out would have kicked out Henry after two years too and quite probably Bergkamp half way through his first season.

If we talk about upcoming players such as Gnabry, Zelalem, and Sanogo the AAA talk about them not being ready – but that is the point of having a youth policy – you bring the kids through and make them ready.   If we’d never done that we would never have had Ray Parlour and the rest.  People who really insist on using the hackneyed phrases should try “Bringing the kids through is in Arsenal’s blood.”

As it is we have players within the team who are improving and improving all the time – players like Giroud, Ramsey, Wilshere, Theo, Ozil…

We could also have some interesting squad members returning from loan – such as  Campbell, Aneke, Coquelin, Akpom, as well as one or two stepping up from the youth sides like Hayden.

Now of course I am not saying return loanees and youth players are going to make a big difference next season – no, they will add to the mix, but if history continues in the way that it has during the Wenger period then at least one of these will emerge, while another player who has been dismissed will come good.

So we have a decent squad, and a growing squad.   But is that enough in the face of the onslaught of unpunished contact injuries?

No it isn’t, and I think we are doing something else.  Herbert Chapman famously only went after one trophy a season, almost taking us to relegation in order to win the FA Cup on one occasion.    Arsenal during its financially stretched years has used the same approach, playing the younger and fringe players in the FA Cup, League Cup and dead matches in the Champions League.

There is however another way which is to have a larger squad made up of players who are serious contenders for the top games.    We know that injuries will not go away, not because of the training methods Arsenal have, as the Guardian suggested in its smirking article, but as Walter’s on-going series on injury statistics show, Arsenal are targeted and not protected.

And this is a real factor.  There were people writing in yesterday saying words to the effect of, “you always blame the refs and the media when we lose”.   But the point is, even with another manager we are going to continue to fail to get protection from the debilitating tackles that put us at the top of the contact injury list – something that the Guardian article chose to ignore.

There are only two solutions.  One is to turn Arsenal into a team of kickers and cloggers and adopt a Stoke City style of play in order to win trophies – the trophy at any price approach – or one ups the size of the squad in terms of the very best.

And this I think is what will happen this season.  We will use up the 25 allocated places that we can have in the squad by bringing in a few more quality players, and then we rotate them through the four competitions.

If Uefa lets Arsenal down by not implementing FFP or if the lawyers at Man City and the accountants at Liverpool win, then as the clogging and the kicking go on, and year on year our squad is decimated by contact injuries we have players who can come into the position, and will know that they will get games in some of the competitions.

My only worry is that the really top players will look at those statistics and think, hell, I don’t want to get kicked to bits.  I’d sooner player for a club that isn’t targeted.  That’s a worry, but I can’t think what we can do about that.

259 comments to Where next for Arsenal?

  • Brickfields Gunners

    Thanks Tony .Couldn’t agree with you more.
    Shit happens but Arsenal get dumped by the bucket load !
    Its takes men of great character and fortitude to forge ahead against the odds, and I do hope those gentlemen in charge of Arsenal continue the good fight .
    We’ve still a long way to go this season and I believe our players will deliver.
    Up the Gunners !

  • ole

    your arguments are ok..evry one is right but the other does not know! the one thing am tired of hearing is “in a season or two we will b fine” since 2006!!..n that is becouse ‘those teams’ will steal our players.(which is becoming a reality..n painful one)

  • Wolfgang

    Wenger at one time used to blame the ref when he had a loss. Yesterday’s humiliating defeat is his 100%.I don’t know why the gunners always self destruct when playing the top teams.He has lost to the top 3 away and was lucky to edge out Pool in the cup.
    We all know he has been tactically outsmarted by the top teams but he still perseveres with his one dimensional attack with passing frenzy.Why the hell didn’t he play like in the Bayern 2nd leg?
    BM are not cl favourites for nothing. Of course nothing is carved in stone.If Moyes were to beat BM over 2 legs and the gunners finsh 4th,it will be I told you so.
    Don’t take 4th place for granted with Everton some 5 points behind with a game in hand.
    Arsenal so long the epl leaders have choked when the finishing line is in sight. Wenger must go

  • Brickfields Gunners

    In the House of Suddhoo

    A stone’s throw out on either hand
    From that well-ordered road we tread,
    And all the world is wild and strange;
    Churel and ghoul and Djinn and sprite
    Shall bear us company to-night,
    For we have reached the Oldest Land
    Wherein the powers of Darkness range.
    Rudyard Kipling

  • andy1886

    Sorry Tony but I cannot agree with much of this. Fair play to you for your unswerving support of Arsene, but how about putting the club first, not a single employee? Arsene hasn’t moved with the times, merely sending out the team to play their game without taking account of the opposition just does not work any more. Why send out the team in exactly the same way yesterday as we did at Liverpool? Same slow start, same high line, same attacking line up, same lack of solidity, no surprise that we got exactly the same result then.

    As for “a change of manager for Arsenal would not make a slightest bit of difference” how on earth can you say that? A little more tactical awareness would have least given us a better shot, a different approach in January would have give us better squad options. Can you honestly say that no-one would have done anything differently? Really?

    “Giroud is operating at the same level as Thierry Henry did after two years” No, he isn’t. That’s bonkers quite honestly, I cannot believe that you actually wrote that.

    “There are only two solutions. One is to turn Arsenal into a team of kickers and cloggers and adopt a Stoke City style of play in order to win trophies – the trophy at any price approach – or one ups the size of the squad in terms of the very best.” More nonsense I’m afraid. How about we actually go into a game with a realistic game plan in future? How about we actually utilise the resources we have and invest effectively on top players when the need is so clearly evident? Arsene has had the funds to buy better players but has chosen not too. Instead we have to watch Giroud jog around while our only other options are an old wastrel or a young wannabe. Poor poor planning, poor poor decision making, all unfortunately made by yesterday’s man.

  • Ryan L

    Please don’t be offended and take this as a criticism, as it isn’t, but I am really intrigued by the comments you make about comparison’s between Thierry Henry and Olivier Giroud’s first 2 seasons at the club, and really interested to know where you are coming from on that one?

    Especially as you’re trying to compare quite different circumstances one being the comparison of a 22/23yo at the time versus a 26/27yo. One being a striker who had skill and raw, scary pace, versus one who is more of a hold up player in a time which is currently criticised for its teaming being bereft of pace. Then there is the stats side, now Henry didn’t start scoring until October in his first season and then went on to rack up 26 goals in his first season and 22 in his second. Giroud has scored less but played less games, but comparative strike rates are 0.48 for Henry and 0.41 for Giroud.

    Like I say – just really interested in where you’re coming from on this point, especially in relation to then suggesting certain sections of fans would have wanted Henry kicked out a la Giroud, because that comes across as a bit flipent and knee jerk, but I might be wrong and it might be that the internet and blogging werent so pertinent in 1999.

  • Andy L

    I think its laughable how the media choose to ignore FFP when both Chelsea and Man City have 20 or so players on loan , that is 40 odd players unavailable to any other team. They buy players and leave them with that team which is financial doping , whereas we are trying to build a side. The Totts spend £100M on a variety of players , none of which have made the grade so far , so spending money on 5 or 6 players is risky so building a side slowly seems to be the answer. Arteta has done a job for us in midfield and has been rewarded but he lacks the athleticism and physicality to be the fulcrum of our team. Matic is resigned by Chelsea after going to a Russian side ( Abramovitch influence , financial doping again? ) so he was unavailable but we need the equivalent to compete with these teams. The question is can we find that person before the FFP teams buy him and don’t play him .

  • Kenneth Widmerpool

    I also agree with you Tony. Also many many thanks for all the effort you’ve put into the anniversaries section reminds me of the old Arsenal handbook-does it still exist?.
    Strange that a “yesterdays man” is manager of a team that were top of the league for most of this season, is in the semis of the FA Cup and for the second year running couldnt be defeated at the Alliance Arena. Better get Martinez in.
    Wenger out!
    COYG! Aha and Amen!

  • tj

    @Wolfgang FUCK YOU and your wenger must go bullshit. I am so sick and tired of all you so called fans that talk crap about the club every fucking opportunity they get.

    I have been an arsenal fan for about 16 years now(might not seem much to some people on here, and been a reader on this site for about 2 and quite honestly shits like you and the press are just driving me insane.

    We lost, I watched every minute of the match it sucks but arsenal is my club and I will support them even if we end up in league 2. Which should be true for any real supporter.

    You say “wenger out” “wenger out” what the fuck do you think will happen when he leaves? the refs will suddenly stop cheating? idiots like you will suddenly stop bashing the team? NOPE.. what i think would happen is we’d bring in a new guy who would try to change the team to suit his coaching style, then the team goes through a transition period of another couple of seasons maybe more! then fucking idiots like you will come out and start saying “new coach out! at least wenger kept us in champions league” see:man u

    GOD I JUST WANNA RIP YOUR FLIPPING HEAD OFF!!! It irritates me to hear people like you say “I am an arsenal fan” when you don’t even deserve to say the name.

    I come to this site, because it is the one place on the internet where I can read positive things about my club even when we have terrible days. Real fans support their club through everything plain and simple.

    if this comment gets approved, sorry everybody for all the swearing, I think I have been quite for just a little too long

  • Mike T

    Andy L

    I know Putin is looking to expand Russia but when did Portugal, where Matic played his football, become part of Russia?

  • As it is we have players within the team who are improving and improving all the time – players like Giroud, Ramsey, Wilshere, Theo, Ozil…

    with the execption of walcott, all those players are injured to due fatigue muscle injuries due to the fact our squad is to small,

    one striker ? to win the prem? Arsene just needs to trust his whole squad and rest the good ones for the smaller games,

    he over uses certain players, and doesnt have replacements,,, that he trusts

    wengers a great manager, a doctor of football, we dont need 5 superstars in our team , we need another 2, to life the club and provide bodies in a squad that always always runs out of them

  • its not about ffp

    over the last 2 to 3 years we could have strengthened where needed and still shown a profit,

    we lost walcott on 4 th jan, why didnt we atleat get a like for like on loan? We knew we had no strikers , we lose walcott, i mean come on arsene!! WTF? I wanted draxler but there were many many cheaper options out there we could have had, but we kbnow wenger is thinking we have ox, and gnabry though, yes we do, but ox has been out all season and gnabry is 18, they are not replacements for walcott.

    FFP is nothing to do with why we couldnt win the league this year, i hate to say it but the same perrenial mistakes from arsene have cost us again, the league was ours

    wenger brings us so close to something special each year, but each year of late he seems to be putting the handbrake on all by himself, he knows what the team needs to win the league, he knows you cant do it with just giroud and sanogo, whats he playing at?

    I really hope we win the cup this year, but as far as wenger even pretending he was fighting for the league , he wasnt,

  • andy bishop

    @wolfgang and andy 1886 .to be fair to Arsene he clearly stated he took the responsibility for his team “not turning up”. I agree with most of what you say but it was Wenger and his staff that created this team and sacking him is not the answer. We have an FA cup to win. I hope he realises that Wigan will throw everything at us in the early stages like they did at Man City. He needs to set the team up accordingly. It was clear yesterday lessons were not learnt by our humiliations at Man City and Liverpool. TT is probably having a chuckle at being compared with Giroud.

  • Marchand

    This article is pure bullshit!! Arsene Wenger is to blame for the injuries apart from jacks!! he overused ramsey, özil and walcott after his lenghty layoff!! and ffp got nothing to do with wrong tactics and not beeing able to get a team ready. we didnt lose 2:1 we lost 6 bloody nil. 3 times this season we got humiliated!! and you come up with that crap. i was praying the whole week that arteta will not play!! i dont understand wenger anymore and i think he is to old now to change!! It hurts me to see a great man suffer like that!!

  • Kos

    . Away from home against City, Liverpool and now Chelsea, we’ve conceded 17 goals. Explain that please… Stop diverting the subject to ffp. Arse blog this morning nails it.

  • dan

    Great Article

    Tony, protection is there on a purchase basis. Prayers will be answered (as harsh as it is), only after one of the so called big boys lose an England international to a horrific injury, then sit back and watch the media out lash.

  • DevilDriver

    Yes we are mostly all die hard, hardcore PRO Wengerians…
    BUT TONY, how can anyone try to rationalise the performance by the players on Wengers massive day, arsenal’s massive day…

    HOW can it happen? And regularly now…city, liverpool and now chelski. Soft under belly? But – for the players to give it large pre match and then pull out a performance like this means only one aspect of reality – Wenger has lost the changing room. Or that he does not have the capacity to coach and win big games… that titles are up for grabs.

    I hope not.

    COYG –

    fa cup? forget it unless the players have any mettle or moral fibre. I have had my rant now – i will be supporting the team like a man possessed. they need our support.

  • Marchand

    if u want to read something that makes actually sense!!!

  • Mandy Dodd

    Tony, some valid points as ever. Agree with your option two, have to get more quality signings into the squad and rotate more to counter the injuries. Would not say no to greater use of a MF enforcer either.
    Wenger going is not the answer to anything, although I do I do wonder if an Inferior British manager would get an easier ride than the Monsieur wenger does….maybe for some, good old fashioned xenophobia is the acceptable face of racism?
    You say we won’t stop the injuries, but if you and Walter are correct for the root cause of them, as opposed to the view of the Manchester Guardian, I hope the club and it’s lawyers are doing all they can to take this on with the powers that be, just get a gut feeling they are not. The club should also expose what happened between the ref and Anthony Taylor yesterday for the good of the game, again, not holding my breath….think the club do so many things right, but in some ways are a conservative bunch maybe a bit too accepting of the status quo, other clubs I could think of might take a different approach.
    Yesterday, was strange and worrying. Why do we keep our shape in Munich or Dortmund but go to pieces away to EPL big boys. These players do not lack ability, yet if you could spend a week preparing a team to do everything possible wrong, you could do no better than yesterday. To me, that means they are stressed, feeling the pressure and it is making them perform extremely badly in these games. Is it possible that the tremendous pressure built up on wenger over the years is showing and transmitting to them in certain situations? Pat rice said in a Talkshite interview last Friday that wenger is a terrible loser, losses can affect him for days…It is not as they are not trying, maybe even trying too hard to please their boss, and ensure he stays. One of many reasons I wish he would just sign da ting.There are many factors in poor performance, although yesterday, tactical nativity has to at least be examined as part of it, stress , pressure other factors
    As for FFP, I am sure the big English clubs will get away with what they want, they will make an example of some Greek team or something to save face.
    Giroud….a decent player in bad form, with unfortunately no replacement to rest or challenge him. This has to be addressed as a number one priority this summer, and in June, not Aug 31 if at all possible. Unfortunately, no lack of effort from OG, but his current form is making it hard for the like of Poldi and Santi to supply him, his form is also making it easy for opposing defenses and MFs to concentrate on other ways to damage us, in a way that would not be the case if we had a forward on fire in the team keeping them busy.
    We need to consolidate a top four place, at worst, and make sure we do not under perform and let pressure get to the team again in the FA Cup, win that and a lot of this pressure and negativity will go. And that in itself adds to the pressure these boys are under….
    Then , get to work in the summer

  • nicky

    Can’t see what all the fuss is about.
    We are lightweight for the EPL and the CL, yet again.
    A prolonged sick list hasn’t helped, just when we needed a full squad.
    We will qualify for next season’s CL and
    we may well win this
    season’s FA Cup.
    The time to moan is if we fail to buy in the summer sales.
    To support Arsenal is not for the fainthearted.

  • Singapore Gunner

    To maintain status quo ie fourth, CL qualifiacation, Wenger is the man. To have a real chance of title, another manager is required. Any way Wenger has only another 3,4 years as Arsenal manager considering his age. Arsenal has to start planning life without Wenger.

  • andy1886

    Andy: “Wenger and his staff that created this team and sacking him is not the answer” – I’m not advocating sacking him now, there’s nothing to be gained from that and you’re right, we do have an FA Cup to win. What I do say is that it’s time that Arsene considered a different role, maybe at Arsenal, maybe not. Either way signing him to a new contract would be a mistake IMO as there is no sign that we will not just continue making the same old mistakes over and over.

    Mandy: “I do wonder if an Inferior British manager would get an easier ride than the Monsieur wenger does” maybe, although Brendan Rodgers did get a lot of flack last season (and be fair, we spent a lot of time laughing at him and his team), but you would have to say now that he has learnt a lot, done a pretty good job, and if you’re honest would you refer to him as ‘inferior’ to Arsene this season?

    Kenneth: – top of the league is all well and good, but only worth anything when the season ends in May. As for the Bayern games that might actually mean something if we hadn’t convincingly lost the two home games and our German friends weren’t confident that the tie was already over.

  • GoonerGuy

    Agree with Tony. The concept that Arsenal are fair game because they are a team comprised mainly of physically small touch players has pervaded the premiership for the last 10 years. It’s not helped by smirks from pundits when Wenger complains. The defeat yesterday wasn’t because of rough house tactics on the day but when you have three top class players out through injury it’s not really surprising.
    So what to do ? Play Flamini in these games and get at least one physically imposing player who can dominate in the Viera mode.
    As regards Wenger I don’t subscribe to the idea it’s all about winning. That’s the objective but the enjoyment and passion is the journey. One of the joys of supporting Arsenal is seeing young players come in and develop and sharing the highs and lows. I would not swap that for thinking I was being conned by a bunch of mercenaries who ply their trade for the highest payroll. Even less a manager in the Mourinho mould who is more interested in his cv and public persona than in developing a club. Where will the fans be when they stop winning which they inevitably will at some point.
    If you get addicted to the buy to win mentality it soon loses its gloss the winning becomes irrelevant, the loss insufferable and you feel cheated.
    I don’t feel cheated being a Gooner. I enjoy the journey and the uncertainty which is the essence of football

  • bjtgooner

    @Mandy @ nicky

    Really good posts in contrast to some of the hysteria coming from the long term trolls and some johnny come lately types.

    I agree Wenger has some work to do this summer but for now we need to back the team; putting them under yet more pressure by rabid criticism will be destructive.

  • Mandy Dodd

    andy1886, was not referring to any specific managers, just making the point that media onslaughts are not always based on ability, or even reality
    Would use the example of someone like Martin oneill…ok would not call him technically British, and believe me he would be quite upset back in the day if you did…but he got a very easy ride. Would put Arry, and countless others in the same bracket.
    As for Rogers, he has undoubtedly learned a lot. But he has also had the sort of season whereby everything has gone his way. Wenger has not Will be interesting to see how BR copes next year. He may cope very well, but he has a very long way to go to match wenger.

  • option 1 turn into stoke?? option two, have enough players to make a squad, yeah i prefer option 2,

    What some people forget here is that everytime wenger takes us so close only to let us down, is that it is spreading an incurable disease throughout the team, one of doubt, fear, and malaise.

    THink how damn good we were against napoli, if we had rotated better and had 1 or 2 more worldies on our team to cover injuries, not kids, worldies, then the league was so far ours we would have won it at a canter,

    we still would have been in FFP boundries even if we had spent another 60 mil, why didnt we? the team obviously needs it, wenger has said many times BEFORE jan that we needed a striker, surly in the whole world of football we could have found someone who is a better option than sanogo, all our scouts could find noone? arsene decides we have enough, though clearly we dont, all our best players are injured because we “have enough”, wenger hates rotating, he only uses podolski whn he has to, jokes really.

    The most sad thing is that anyone could see we had to use arteta and flamini yesterday with ox on the wing and rosocky or caz in the middle! Ox barely knows that central position, let alone playing alongside caz and arteta,

    why wouldnt wenger have used flamini and arteta yesterday agaonst one of the worlds most powerful teams? WHY!? because arsene wants to play his way and no other, even after the early goal we carried on, no shape , no discipline ,

  • i have always defended wenger, ive almost got smacked inb the face numerous times in drunk pub arguments, defending wenger, ive been doing it for years,

    im not a troll, im a concerned fan, who wants to taste the victory that is within our grasp and whp wants to see our great manager not put ridiculous restrictions on himself every single year when with a little reliquishment of power could win the league every single year, without spending madly, just on what we actually need

  • Abdul

    The managers input is deficient of a winning mentality. We’ve got some good players in there except a few like Giroud whom this article doesn’t seem to have a problems with. Something needs to change and it’s wenger. People are too afraid of change cos they fear it may bring the worse but that’s no point at all. It’s a risk the club must take now. If Wenger can’t change the he should be replaced. These sets of players need a new direction. They new a new psychology! The most experienced and perhaps the oldest manager in the league such things don’t befit him. He better bows out now and honorably too

  • could somneone who wont critisise wenger please just answer me one thing?

    Do you think winning the premier league is possible with one recognised striker?

  • andy1886

    Mandy, time will tell. He certainly has a long way to go to match AW’s historical achievements but if we concentrate on the here and now I cannot see any evidence that he’ll suddenly lose the plot and become a poorer manager. Maybe if Suarez leaves he’ll struggle, but all things being equal and with a ManU side that cannot be as bad next season as they are now, can you realistically see any reason why next season with AW would be any better than this one?

  • Tactics: He has no interest in the opposition. He’s on record as saying so and you can see it in our approach, which bar the odd personnel change, is always the same. There is never a surprise when Arsenal play.

    Players: We’ve had one striker for two years. One very average striker. Olivier Giroud is the worst first team striker in the top ten. It’s an absolute joke he’s our only option. I mean, he’s not even a well looked after average striker, we knacker him out so he’s even more inept.

    Depth: Look, we have 4 players out and we’re down to bare bones. That’s not right. Not with £140m sitting in the bank. It’s totally unacceptable planning and it’s so predictable. In the whole world, this January, all we could manage was Kim Kallstrom with a broken back. And look, 2 of our first team injuries in Aaron and Theo we knew about by January 5th. The lack of a striker has been an issue since last summer. It’s terrible, terrible management.

    Power: For a manager who has a 1000 Premier League games under his belt, it’s a pretty stark weakness that he seems not to understand that to win the league you need power and pace. This squad lacks it big time. Liverpool (6 goals yesterday) are power and pace and it’s incredible to watch. Chelsea (6 goals) today, power and pace. Manchester City (5 goals), power and pace. Why are we not recruiting players that can bring that to our set up? Where is our lightening striker? Where is our powerhouse midfield? Why do we only have one pace setter in the side? Why has Wenger forgotten the type of players that made his name?

    Top 4 fails: We consistently come up short against the big teams. We have a manager who sits on £7.5m a year and he has NEVER beaten Jose. That’s not bad luck, that’s because he’s no where near the manager Jose is. It pains me to say that, but it’s the truth. He is consistently outsmarted by the better manager.

    Funds: We have £140m available to spend on players, yet we have a squad that is desperately under resourced. There is no glory in a cash surplus that has no purpose. Your job, as a manager, is to ensure the best possible squad lines up every season. We have ONE striker. We’ve been through two transfer windows and that wasn’t addressed. It’s negligence in the extreme. As someone said yesterday, misusing funds at least demonstrates that you’ve tried. To have obvious squad deficiencies and fail to address them… well, it’s quite unbelievable.

  • nicky

    What is beginning to irritate me is the fickle nature of some so-called Arsenal supporters who have no patience with the manager, the players and even the Board. Immediately something goes wrong heads must roll, no matter what time of the season….as though such action will cure all our problems.
    Let me remind those who support our great Club and who are faint of heart, that we veterans can well recall the late 1930’s when Arsenal really were the top club of our land.
    Although we cannot claim to be in that position now, our support has never faltered and never will.
    Remember that 99.9% of clubs throughout Britain and Europe envy our achievements each and every season.


    I love the comparison of TH14 and The very honest and ordinary Mr Giroud – If you gave them the choice which do you think most prem centre backs would prefer to play against ? But really you missed your calling as a comedy writer there Tony .
    As for all the excuses regarding the stupid ref decision on the penalty yesterday – sure the ref was wrong but it’s just a red herring – I was there and incase you didn’t Notice we were at the time getting our arse’s handed to us .
    But hey never let he facts spoil a good delusion !!!!

  • andy1886

    Nicky ” the fickle nature of some so-called Arsenal supporters who have no patience with the manager” so how long is enough patience? Ten years (nearly there)? Twenty? Fifty? I think that I read somewhere that this was the second longest barren run for the club since the war. If it becomes the longest will that be enough? At his best Arsene was second only to Fergie, that was the first 500 games. Sure since then we’ve made a nice big bundle of CL cash, but surely another 500 games and nothing to show for it is long enough?

  • Sod Gunner

    Made to love magic,
    So right on many counts. All Arsenal supporters want Arsene Wenger to succeed and win trophies but there comes a stage in anyone’s career when certain failings and issues keep reoccurring that people rightly question their suitability for the job. We all recognise the outstanding work Wenger has done for the club and the trophies he won but you are judge on present events. As highlighted having only one recognised striker in Giroud and trying to maintain a title challenge is unbelievable, our only other options are a player that we loaned out in two consecutive years and couldn’t even get into arelegation threatened team let alone keep his pants up

  • highamsparkgunner

    @MADETOLOVEMAGIC If you are going to come on with your anti wenger rant at least have the decency to write your own thoughts rather than blatantly paste and copy an article from Legrove. Surprised you didn’t mention that when you made your comments.

  • yeah nicky actually most people are reacting to 4 years of the same groundhog day season over and over when simple reinforcments could and should have been made,

    we are not being reactionary, it is only this jans window when i finally started to think wengers actions are not those of someone who wants to win

    i cant see it any other way

    people say he loves to win, but maybe just maybe he loves to lose a little to? us against the world and all that

  • bob

    “We will use up the 25 allocated places that we can have in the squad by bringing in a few more quality players, and then we rotate them through the four competitions.”
    Agreed, Tony. But we could well have done so – affordably – over the last over the last 4 windows. The spurning of the January windows has been one part of the current problem; and not fixing the one-striker problem at the start of this last summer (but pretending that a list of names was the same as having another quality striker, as UA consistently did) was another start of the current problem. These are correctable, and for the first time in ages I find myself agreeing with your sentiment on an actual quality 25 as the goal.

  • higham


    why would i try and pass something off as my own when i know the chances of people realising it are like 100 percent? lol,, apols to le grove though, should have credited it

    certainly wasnt trying to pass it off as mine mate

    maybe you should try trying to counter what is being said in here today ionstead of picking on stupid things..

    i have been the biggest wenger defenders for years , as i said ive almost got knocked out over a few times, i absolutely support wenger

    its just i would rather him admit he is not trying to win the league than pretend he is,

    he knows you cant win it with one striker, he is a clever man, he knows surly you need to rotate to avoid injuries,

    please tell, do you think wenger really thought we could win the league after jan, with no replacement for walcott, long termers to aaron, ozil flagging , girouds shot

    do you think wenger though he could win, siging NOBODY in an already injury ravaged team?

    he doesnt care anymore, he would rather lose the league than spend money on a player that he doesnt think represents financial sense

    it makes financial success to win, arsena , and you are killing all your hard work , by spreading uncertainty all through the heart of your team

    before jan all our players were saying we need more players, then we lose walcott and he signs nobody, i think he will start to lose the plkayers if he doesnt change quick in the summer

    unfortunately i think wenger would rather leave than to spend money AT ARSENA;

  • Gooner S


    Interesting response at 11.50

    “Barren years”…. Really? 17 years consequtive in the top 4. Name me one other Arsenal Manager that has done that? Yes, we haven’t won a cup during the last 8 years but we have been in finals and as I’ve said been in the top 4. We could and shouldve won the league at least once during this time.

    So we build The Emirates. Did you expect us to just trundle a couple of miles down the road and start winning again? To answer your question,even though it wasn’t at me, I thought for 10 years we would be ‘out of sorts’. I genuinely thought we would drop out of the top 5. That hasn’t happened. I credit Arsene Wenger with that. I don’t think we can continue to use the Emirates as an excuse longer than 10 years but we have no divine right to win anything and financially we cant compete with City or Chelsea.

    The sense of entitlement and outrage coming from some AFC suporters is both surprising in the first sense and shocking in the later.

    Yesterday was abysmal in terms of performance and result but what I find strange is that the players concerned are largely dodging the flak from our own support. These are not talentless players but for some reason yesterday they did not follow the game plan and tactics that they were given. Not for the first time this season either. Why? The solution to that question is the more worrying thing from a squad perspective.

  • bob

    “Would not say no to greater use of a MF enforcer either.”
    Yes, as has been noted since the start of the summer, this and a striker remain specific needs to fill: the oilers have sides with rather large men with skill, and we’ve needed at least a Song-like answer to start to derail their heads of steam.

  • nicky

    @Andy1886 & MTLM,
    I take your points but a true supporter will always back the manager and the team against all odds, season after season.
    In full flow we still play the most attractive football in the land and we should be appreciative of that. We are approaching a close season when the full extent of our prudent business dealings over the last decade will come to light and new signings

  • nicky

    will not have quite the same monetary restrictions as in the past. Have faith and a bit more patience.

  • bob

    “both Chelsea and Man City have 20 or so players on loan , that is 40 odd players unavailable to any other team.”
    Andy L,
    This is a very good point. It is probably an important part of the problem we/others face, especially when they withhold players, by design, from their direct competitors (ex: Chelski withholding Demba Ba from us at the very end of this past summer as I recall?). I am still hard-pressed to believe that it exhausted the realm of global possibility in the last few windows. But since it’s all hush-hush, it’s difficult to know exactly its specific and current impact.

  • Sod Gunner

    Sorry , posted unfinished piece)

    And an unknown and untried French youngster that we gave his first start against the best team in Europe.

    Looking at the manner in which the club and manager have conducted business in the transfer windows and the amount of last minute purchases strikes of desperation. The whole Kallstrom saga really highlighted this and has shown the inefficiencies that have existed in this field since David Dein left the club.

    Yes moving to the Emirates has put financial constraints on Wenger that other clubs and managers didn’t have to worry about, but this is Arsenal and we are not some tin pot outfit living on scraps, money is available but bar Ozil we are afraid to loosen the purse strings. If anyone really thinks that adding a player like Kallstrom when you are pushing for the title is good enough, well it just shows how much standards have slipped.

    We used to have strong, skillful and fast teams but now most of our players are so similiar in size and style. Could you really see the likes of Adams, Keown, Vieira, Parlour, Dixon, Lauren etc getting bullied by the likes of stoke season in and out. Take yesterday’s game did anyone bar Rosicky let any Chelsea player know he was there and put in a hard tackle. It is Wenger’s job to identify players capable of premiership football, try and sign them or promoted them from within the club and them select his team from his squad to get maximum results taking opponents, style of play, conditions etc into account.

    We went up to stoke only a few weeks ago and left Flamini our most combative player on the bench for most of the game when we knew they would and did kick the proverbial out of us. Yes the ref failed to do his job that day, but we failed to be prepared and select players to counter that, putting it simply tactics!!!!

    There always will be poor decisions by refs in games until video technology is fully adopted but if you don’t have the right players and tactics you cause alot of your own problems.

    Hopefully we will get back to winning ways Tuesday after all that!!!!!

  • andy1886

    ‘S’ “Barren years”…. Really? 17 years consequtive in the top 4. Name me one other Arsenal Manager that has done that?”

    But what is that actually worth? There really isn’t a ‘top 4 trophy’ as much as some might like there to be. Would I rather win the odd trophy every few years or finish fourth and gain entry to a competition that we never win? Yes I would. You could tell me that Graham didn’t achieve that and it’s true. I could point you towards a very interesting article that on Angry of Islington a couple of days back that shows that GG won 0.69 trophies per season of his tenure whereas AW has won 0.4. I’d take that ratio and the odd lower league placing every day of the week thanks. You’re welcome to prefer those ‘top4’s’, it’s your choice.

    As for the Ems, anyone who can read a financial report knows that we’ve had money for some time, several years in fact. The stadium is financed like any other mortgage, the increase in revenue more than compensates for the repayments, and that £140m in the bank didn’t just magically appear last summer, its been building for some time. Don’t make out that we’re poor by any stretch, how long have we been in the top 10 football rich list?

    As for “for some reason yesterday they did not follow the game plan and tactics that they were given” I’d like to hear how you became aware of Arsene’s instructions? Is it just a coincidence that every time we play a top 4 side away the players (regardless of who is selected) suddenly ignore Arsene and play their own flawed game plan resulting in a humiliating defeat? Could it possibly be that these ARE Arsene’s tactics and that they just don’t work?

    Either Arsene hasn’t learnt from tactical failures or he is unable to get players he bought and coached to follow a basic game plan. It’s one or the other and neither reflects well on the manager.

  • bob

    “In full flow we still play the most attractive football in the land and we should be appreciative of that.”
    I have long admired your views and experience, but, while respecting the need as you say to support to the hilt while still in full flow, there’s something unhelpful about unconditional love in this moment. Love, yes. But love that works to develop and forearm the beloved is also love.

  • andy1886

    Nicky, a true supporter backs the club and wants what is best for it. If that means they want a certain employee to be replaced there is nothing wrong with that. The only reason to keep AW in charge is if you genuinely believe that he is the best man for the job. I don’t believe that is the case anymore, you of course are welcome to disagree.

  • bob

    ” Don’t make out that we’re poor by any stretch, how long have we been in the top 10 football rich list?”
    Further on to this point:
    I find two reasons, both conscious and unconscious, that pleading poverty is a common resort: (1) speaking objectively: our relative (and not absolute) “poverty” is in comparison to oilers who are adept and Dedicated to withholding top talent from direct competitors (ex: Chelsea doesn’t play Ba, but withholds him from a desperate AFC at the tail end of the summer window); (2) speaking subjectively: people are used to and, at times, resort to pleading poverty to escape from the self- assessment and the acknowledgment of actual problems that need to be addressed (and, in which case, those not doing the necessaries will be held accountable).

  • nicky the fact that we still play the best football almost makes it more frustrating, with a slightky stronger and much deeper squad we would see performances ala napoli very often andwe would win stuff, and wenger would get the recognition for being soo damn good at getting people playing good footy together

    wenger the way he does it is harming his own reputation for good football

  • bob

    “We went up to stoke only a few weeks ago and left Flamini our most combative player on the bench for most of the game when we knew they would and did kick the proverbial out of us.”
    Sod Gunner,
    On this point, I think there’s another (imo, stronger) possibility: that flamini would certainly have picked up a red card or two yellows for retaliation. Agreed, he is our most combative player (and there should be another at least, like him). But Storc being stoked and abetted by complicit refshite, I could see that AW was right not to risk another stretch (after a stretch of suspension, if I rightly recall) where we almost certainly would lose Flamini. I love him for his combativeness; but, as it is his nature, sending him out to do battle with Stoke would have been to beg for a red card. So I part company with you on this point.

  • bob

    p.s. wanting to credit Mandy for first having pointed this out (about Flamini purposefully being kept out of it)

  • Chris N

    Watching the match felt like an act of self harm. We have watched Barca and to an extent Bayern show us how to play our passing game optimally, but have never managed to play it that way ourselves for more than half a match. What is missing from us on a consistent level is the hard hard work and tenacity in team defending. We don’t run, we stroll. We jog. We lack discipline. The teams of Patrick and Thierry ran at oppositions all day, but for the last five years we’ve mostly stopped running. Times change, and Wenger has become far far too comfortable and unchallenged. It’s not good for any person. I cannot see how it can change without him making way for someone else.

  • bob

    “we are not being reactionary, it is only this jans window when i finally started to think wengers actions are not those of someone who wants to win.”
    I fully agree that, on the face of it, the Jan window was spurned and should have been utilized. But when you take that poing to AW does not want to win, you are a slave to Le Grovel. AW lives and dies with our team. And it is slanderous to abandon ship for Le Grovel’s insidious hatred for this great man with the relentless accusation that he does not want to win. That is slander. AW may have flawed judgments or decisions (and by his own admission, as does your/ Pedro’s Don Fungusson, by his own admission), but to argue that he does not want to win is misguided at best, and well beyond the moral pale.

  • bob

    Chris N,
    You cannot run all day and all night like energizer bunnies whilst being kicked at – relentlessly, uncardedly, ref-shite abettedly, 90×38). No one can do that. You may not have read, or cared to read Walter’s injury analysis (still posted on this website), but I defy you to make the point the way you just made it with the full knowledge of how disproportionately AFC players are seriously injured relative to the rest of this bent league. Fair is fair. There is criticism to be leveled. But this point of yours is piling on and ignorant of the facts. Read Walter’s analyses here and, I challenge you to come back with these same views and with your reasons.

  • Singapore Gunner

    At the rate Wenger is going we will always be 4th Full Stop

  • bob, i didnt say he didnt want to win, i said his actions were of someone who doesnt want to win,

    ps i don’t stand for legrove, i have spent a long time arguing against them , a .long.time,

    but the point is that pedro is right about wenger this time, he sets us up to fail, ALL the problems we are having now were avoidable.

    If wenger truly wanted to win the league why would he do it with one striker?, maybe he just prefers the idea of winning under constraint self imposed or not, More than the idea of just straight up winning?

    If so thats an ego thing and not fair on the fans, Problem is that i dont believe wenger has flawed judgement, i dont, i believe he sees it all, he knows you cant use young players who are coming back from injury in every game, surly he knows that right?

  • wengers life is arsenal , he lives it and breaths it and when he dies im sure he’ll haunt it too, but the point is i just dont think winning can mean that much to arsene anymore, well winning the normal way anyway.

    the problem is, that it has ben going on and on, if we had won the league in 08, wenger would have done what he set out to do, but youy cant carry on losing and expect there to be a winning mental strenght at the club, losing is becoming the culture at arsenal now and that needs to reversed

  • arsenal get injured a lot because of the way they play, but this has been obvious for years, again more reason we need a bigger squad to cope with it

  • flamini should have been risked, as we NEEEDED him for this game, others we would have coped in, should he have got a yellow in the chelsea match

  • A “winning mentality” indeed Abdul. And what is that? Is that the same as having winning in your DNA?

  • Ole, I don’t think it has been “in a season or two…” Rather it has been a recognition that we had a big stadium problem – as Chelsea, Liverpool and Tottenham still have. We could have done nothing, gone to Wembley, gone to the site on the M25 or stayed in Islington. We chose the latter, and have had to pay for it. Now we have – the situation is quite different from the Highbury and earlier post-Highbury days.

  • OMGArsenal

    Why,after every defeat or poor performance, do the invisibles show up on UA and post their criticisms and complaints, but when we win, either beautifully or more marginally, they are no where to be seen? That is the key question.
    It is one loss in an otherwise remarkable season filled with injuries, officiating gaffs and incompetence (once again shown yesterday) and there are still 8 games to go, with 24 points up for grabs, plus an FA cup available.
    Wenger is our BEST option for the forseeable future and the moaners and whiners had better get used to the idea. We may need, as Tony says, to bolster our squad in the summer but again, the Club will decide that as well….not some fly by night occasional fanboys coming on UA and trying to convince the supporters that they know better than Wenger or other management at AFC.
    Yesterday, the players NOT Wenger, let us all down and they know it….Tuesday will be different….and with 24 points to play for, our season is far from over. Stop cherry-picking games and start cheering our lads on, regardless of the last game…that’s being a true supporter. Those who say they cannot ignore our losses and have to complain are forgetting that what they write or say ….nobody is listening to.

  • Gooner S


    Well I would rather the consitency than the up and down nature you subscribe to. Each to their own. I would add that a top 4 finish is literally worth quite a lot in modern football becuase it brings Champions League football and the filthy lucre that goes with it! Especially important when one is financing a new stadium.

    Angry of Islington. Yep I read him from time to time, Le Grove too. I’m a sucker for punishment 🙂 Angry is funny. Arseblog is better. Has a better sense of perspective. Positively Arsenal is good too.

    Interesting you mention George Graham. Pre Graham was barren. That’s what a barren spell is. Mid 70s Arsenal…1973/74 to 1976/77. The 80’s werent much fun either until 1987! I’m not old enough to have experienced the 50’s and 60’s but that was barren.

    As for finances where does it say we have £140m to spend on transfers? I dont think it does. Will gladly stand corrected if you can point me to it. I believe it states we have £140m in cash reserves. You need cash reserves when financing a heavy debt (e.g if you dont qualify for the Champions league and miss that revenue stream). We still have a heavy debt and will have for some time. I don’t doubt we have more to spend now but that has seemingly been in place the last year or two.

    Do I know of Arsene’s instructions in yesterday’s game? No! But much as you can comment on the financial policies/balance sheet of the Club and form assumptions/opinions from things you see, read and hear I can do the same too in terms of how the team play. Nothing wrong with that.

    So I will counter with that it seems ok for you to critique me in posing the question that in some way the players are lacking in applying the tactics given to them in these big games but it seems ok for you to state that the tactics were wrong. How does that work?

    That said, do you seriously think AW sent them out without any instructions? And assuming he did supply instructions do you think they followed them? It wasn’t so much Chelseas’s tactics that undid Arsenal it was all of our own doing – that was more my point. We have a talented group of players but in 3 of our biggest games this season we have shot ourselves spectacularly in the foot and failed in a great way. So, is it that we lack in mental capabilities and crack? Lack of leadership on the field? I was trying to look at it from another perspective rather than just blaming the manager and calling for his head. The players have to take some responsibility for these results as well.

  • dan

    Our away record is woeful against the big boys, this has been going on for too long. As a team we don’t even setup for a draw or to frustrate the opposition, I feel Wenger is only too accommodating.

  • TommieGun

    Well, to me, it’s not about Wenger. I mean, it is, but not really.

    It was his 1,000 match as manager.

    Against one of his biggest rivals. A person he would have loved to shut up. In a very important match, that could have potentially influence the title race. The KGB were without 2 important players, and generally fail to look like a convincing team this season. They never looked as good as City in their few months of putting 5s (at least) against every opponent, or Liverpool of the last 5 weeks.

    They look, well, rather ordinary. A team that has to use very negative tactics, to squeeze out marginal results. Even at home.

    So what I’m trying to say, is, that there is no way in hell, AW would have not let his players know that it’s an important match. And if the unfathomable happened, they should have known it themselves. It’s a team of fighters, who fought and fought and fought – especially this season.

    I don’t post a lot here, but I know that I’m keeping the same line – I don’t care about trophies, I don’t care about winning, I don’t care about the refs, too. I care about the guys giving 100%, for 90+ minutes, every time they put on an Arsenal shirt. Very simple. Sometimes we can even win, and I’ll be upset, because it will be a shitty win that was not deserved. Someties we can lose, and I’ll still be happy, because I know we lost due to a mistake by the ref or some individual mistake or whatever. I loved how we won against Spurs – all heart and guts, no glitter.

    But a game like yesterday is something I cannot accept. The guys just did not give a fuck. Not about the club, not about Wenger, not about us. Maybe they stopped giving a fuck after 5 minutes, maybe after 10, but this kind of performance, this kind of absent minded lack of focus – is not giving a fuck.

    And now I’m coming back to Wenger. Yeah, we could have had more players, and the injuries, and what not. Taking all into consideration, we could have lost this one 2-1 or 2-0 or 1-0 or drawn 1-1 or whatever. All of which would have been reasonable results. But this is not what happened. Like I said, the team, as a whole, did not give a fuck. If you have a few players that seem disinterested, some other team mates need to help them pick themselves up. It did not happen.

    So if Wenger after all these years, in his 1,000 match, against a big hated rival, cannot prevent this embarassment – and I’m not talking about the scoreline, I’m talking about the way we played and held ourselves – if after 1,000 matches, the guys dare not to give a fuck like this – then I don’t know, for HIM, not for us, what’s the use in staying any longer.

    If I was him, I would have left.

  • Blacksheep63

    I agree with everything in Tony’s (article except the bit about Giroud/Henry). We have to be patient if we are succeed doing things the right way (the Arsenal way. Careful shopping in the summer with the new income streams we’ve been promised (and we saw used with Ozil) means we can bring in a handful of quality players and integrate some returning loanees. We don’t want wholesale changes because it doesn’t work. We don’t need a change of manager we need Bould to assert himself more (as I think he will in his second season). Wenger needs to be challenged, I’ve said this for a long time now.

    Giroud is a top striker but he is not a ruthless assassin in the way that Henry (or indeed RVP when he is fit) was. Ollie brings a lot to the game that is not just scoring but he won’t convert that many half chances. So I want to see us buy someone who will. But I also want them to bring in a psychologist. This seems to be what Liverpool has done (in fact they are going to lend him to England for the WC) because those players need help in overcoming what seems to be a mental block.

    Sacking the manager will bring chaos not trophies, we need a considered move towards Arsene’s replacement in about two years. In the meantime we all need to stop fighting each other and get behind the team COYG

  • andy1886

    “fly by night occasional fanboys” Wow, saw my first game in 1970, stood in crowds of less than 20,000 in the early eighties, been through the good times and bad and I can’t have an opinion that you don’t agree with? Someone has issues…

    One loss? Come on, your memory can’t be that bad. Remarkable? Fourth again? How exactly is that remarkable?

    The buck stops at the top, you can’t absolve Arsene, even he didn’t try to do that yesterday. He bought, trained and dictated the game plan to those player, and you saw the results (just like you did at Anfield and Etihad). I’ll gladly celebrate good results and credit AW and perhaps you can also bring yourself to be objective when the team including the manager do not perform.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Well remembered on that point Bob!
    Think many are getting a little hung up on tactics. Ultimately Chelsea have had a lot more money, a better squad this season and a better team on the day, that and the fact their manager clearly raised them above their normal level, probably to spite wenger
    It is the quality of players that usually win out in such games, are tactics really of such importance? Wenger conditions chosen players encouraging free will, a team responsibility, football intelligence, the ability to make their own decisions in a game, and learn from things. Jose takes exteremely expensive , experienced players, moulds them into a machine, pre planning and dictating easy second each of them play. Jose always takes the safer options, yet wenger is the one whose ambition is questioned. Wengers approach is risky, when it goes wrong, it really goes wrong, in a way Jose’s methods probably never will or even could. Wengers way takes time and patience, with the risk players may run out of patience. It also takes confidence , of the players and in the players. Out fist choice, when everyone if fit and challenging for places are a match for anybody, yesterday’s team did not all look fresh , fit, nor were they all first choice players. If a manager like Jose came in in place of wenger, he would have to replace the whole squad, as they are just not conditioned in Jose’s more robotic approach. No doubting which is working best at the moment, and there is no doubting arsenal are far from the finished product. Wenger is staying, he certainly would not let the likes of Jose force him to leave. This will fire him up, he will right a few wrongs.
    As for injuries, have read a few reports on this, he seemed especially perturbed over the delay in Ramsey’s return, he gives me at least the impression they are going to do something about this situation. Whether it involves lawyers visiting the FA EPL PGMOL, whether it involved looking at training , or even changing back room staff, we may never even know, but wenger will carry on the good work , and put right a few other issues.

  • bob

    “We may need, as Tony says, to bolster our squad in the summer but again, the Club will decide that as well….not some fly by night occasional fanboys coming on UA and trying to convince the supporters that they know better than Wenger or other management at AFC.”
    With respect, when the point that Tony makes today – and you applaud him for – was being made this very summer past, our Tony was silent. We have needed a full quality 25-man squad from (at least) then on, and several of us here – yes, here for years – have said as much. Not drive-by types, not fly-by-nights. Yes, we do need unity, and I’m shoulder to shoulder on the next 8 games, like it or not. But we needn’t have had a smaller than needed squad and, in truth, one good but not clinical striker; plus a spurned January window. One can point this out, with accuracy, and still love AW and this team. I do and you do. With respect, please consider Tribalism and blind love may not actually help; whereas eyes- wide-open love can, and in the longer run. If you reject that sentiment as treasonous, then c’est la guerre. But one brand of loyalty is only one brand of it. And AFC/AW, right now, can use all the love, in all forms. If you can see the difference that wants the same outcome.

  • AL

    This is what one former referee had to say about yesterday’s incident;

    “Former top-level British and World Cup referee Clive Thomas, who said in 2012 he had lost faith in modern officials, believes the four in charge of Saturday’s game should be banned for the rest of the season.
    Marriner was handling the Stamford Bridge clash alongside assistant referees Scott Ledger and Marc Perry, with Anthony Taylor as fourth official.
    “It’s the most disgusting, shocking decision I’ve seen. In my opinion these four wouldn’t officiate another Premier League game this season,” the 77-year-old Welshman told BBC Radio 5 live.”
    And yet you hear some clowns say accuse us of trying to clutch at straws by blaming the ref.
    At least it’s not us alone that think there’s something terribly wrong with the way the game is reffed.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Agree with you on the psychologist Blacksheep, though word has it, wenger is not so big on accepting help. Sports psychologists have worked wonders in many arenas.

  • Marchand

    15 away games to title rivals 13 losses, one draw and one win. really tough to do worse than Wenger!!


    I think that you are missing something, when you support a club that has money that it chooses not to spend on a regular basis (and this has been the case since at least 2011), that is an entirely different thing from being a “true supporter” of 99.9% of other teams. When you support a wigan or a bolton, you cope , you accept defeat, you live off the small mercies, the giant killings , the cup runs etc. But when you support a team that charges the highest prices in the land and has 150 mil in the bank, and they still choose to keep the money back that the team clearly needs then you have a right to complain, or question who is making these decisions, especially after 4 years of our seasons collapsing, due to lack of squad depth

    people have the right to complain, it doesnt make them not true supporters

    I agree that wenger is the best option going forward , and i would love him to stay another 5 years, but the problem is that the things , the roadblocks he puts in his way every year now are starting to tell, they are getting more bizarre by the year, truly.

    this year the league was ours, a WC striker, along with ozil , and it was ours,it was ours, but no, we go in with only giroud, then when TW gets injured on 4th jan, we .sign. NObody.

    he is an intelligent man, we dominated the league in the first half of the season.. he knows we have a small squad SURLY he cant have expected everyone to stay fit all season long, wengers a rationalist, whats he doing?!! Why didnt we get anyone in January?, Ramsey was out early december, ozils form had already stared to drop as had girouds.
    Was wenger really expecting sanogo to come in and start killing it straight away? ofcourse not, players , even great ones rarely do that, wenger.knows.that.

    So whats he doing?

    The reason people are soo pissed with wenger is because everyone wants to see him do well, but he atleast for the last 4 years has put self inflicted restrictions on himself, he sets us up to win, gives us flashes of utter brilliance, but disarms his own teams, by simply not giving them enough soldiers,

    Look at the napoli game, THAT WAS WENGERBALL!, with a deeper better squad, imagine the football wed get under wenger, that is for me whats most frustrating

    only having giroud as a striker and even saying we are after the league is possibly the most maddening thing wenger has ever done,

    i truly want him to sort it and stay, but if he doesnt change he’ll unwittingly force himself out,

  • Kos

    Arsene – No tactical change. We lost basically the same fashion against Man City, Chelsea, and Liverpool. They carved up our defense and we had no answer. Not sure why we constantly play the high line. Against such teams, it may be beneficial to team up Koscielny and Verminator because Mert lacks the pace in the back. But I don’t know. Sometimes, i am not sure if Arsene is just being stubborn, out of ideas, or his players are not executing whatever the tactic that is being employed.Our players – you are playing for a manager who has blind faith in you. If you get injured, he doesn’t go out and buy new players to replace you. If you underperform, your manager takes the blame. Yet, for a game that was supposed to celebrate your beloved manager’s 1,000th game in charge, you all played like sh*t. i am not sure if some of our players from the Invincible years would have played the same way.

  • Barry

    If we finnish 5th and no trophy wenger will be gone and the only thing they will say is he never won nothing for 10 years not that he has cast in stone the future of Arsenal football.i hope he stays he deserves to reap the benefits of the years we had no money this club is only going to get bigger and bigger but lets not kid ourselves
    well never compete financially with shitty or chelski open cheques will always nick players we are interested in hey ho thru thick and thin always follow the ARSENAL

  • dan

    Maureen love him or hate him, he has the measure of Wenger. Wenger has had many chances to get one over Maureen, but, always fails. Wenger will never setup to frustrate, he has seen the likes of Stoke kick the shit out of our players and to Maureen it’s all game.

    This is not about Wenger against Maureen, however, Wenger has allowed these minds games get to him.

  • Spectrum

    Well I’m sure this site welcomes all viewpoints, as it seems to be very impartial. So here is an article that does give an alternative, if very candid, analysis.

    In the interests of stimulating discussion further, here it is ….

    (the link was edited out. Untold’s readership is very large – up to 750,000 visits a month, and increasingly other sites are trying to use us as a way to get their own numbers up with links. I really don’t think that is our job here – so I’ve been cutting these pieces).

  • Kos

    we have 4 players out and we’re down to bare bones. That’s not right. Not with £140m sitting in the bank. It’s totally unacceptable planning and it’s so predictable. In the whole world, this January, all we could manage was Kim Kallstrom with a broken back. And look, 2 of our first team injuries in Aaron and Theo we knew about by January 5th. The lack of a striker has been an issue since last summer. It’s terrible, terrible management.

  • Chris N

    I’m not subscribing to this ‘bent league’ with an Anti Arsenal agenda. It’s a dreadful perpetual victim mentality that has infested both sides of North London. Did you see the amount of times Suarez was kicked and tripped against United? What did he do? He stayed on his feet. Football Intelligence – knowing that the ref’s all think you are a diver so even if you are tripped, get back on your feet and play. Wilshire gets kicked, Chamberlain gets kicked, and while they’re lying there on their bellies waiting for a whistle that does not blow, the person who knocked them over is charging toward their goal. Football intelligence. Get off the ground (which you didn’t need to go to) and get the ball back off the person who dispossessed you.

  • andy1886

    ‘S’ – Thanks for the response Yes, the 70’s barring ’79 of course were pretty average to say the least, those were my school days when every glory hunter was a ‘Pool fan rubbing it in. The early eighties were the days of John Hawley, Brian McDermott and Raphael Meade, perhaps a trio that were actually worse than what we have now, but it didn’t seem so poor as it does now. Back then we knew that if a manager didn’t perform they would go sooner or later. Now the biggest problem is that there doesn’t seem to be that accountability anymore. I have said already that I’m not calling for Arsene to be sacked, rather that he retire gracefully at the end of the season.

    As for tactics the reason I think that the players were following Arsene’s instructions is that the start mirrored remarkably what happened at Anfield – could that be a coincidence? I don’t believe it is, it looked like a plan and a very bad one that showed we had not learnt a thing from our previous thumping. Of course players have to take responsibility, but if they are following the manager’s instructions then a large part of the responsibility belongs to him. We’ll probably never know though.

  • great post Tommie,

    I honestly dont think it was a motivational thing, wenger doesnt “motivate” his players, he expects motivation to come from within,

    this is fine when you are dealing with winners like he was in his first 500 games, but now the ethos in the club is not a winning one, far from it. These young players need a leader now more than the silent proff type, because arsenal doubt themselves and that culture will only change if a) we win something or b) we get a new manager

    I want wenger to stay, but i believe he could lose the team this year if we win nothing,

    But yesterday was about a team who are mentally shot, we had 7 days to get ready for this game, we looked lost, scard, chaotic,

    every player on that team would have been motivated, it comes down to the fact that we played with ox arteta and caz in the middle, it had disaster all over it….

    The reason we lost was just our small squad size and lack of rotation coming home to roost, like it does every year recently

  • dan

    Two big game and 2 nil down within 8 minutes, not good!

  • bob

    “this year the league was ours, a WC striker, along with ozil , and it was ours,it was ours, but no, we go in with only giroud, then when TW gets injured on 4th jan, we .sign. NObody.”
    I’ve said as much, and agree on these points. Spurning January as a “distraction” may or may not be AW’s call. But when we only wind up with players (Kallstrom and Monreal) because someone is injured, we then are forced to use January. Imagine if there weren’t a January to bring in even those few reinforcements. Three January’s back, when we were in competition in three cups, it was clear that we needed more than that on defense. But no, it was the wounded will return, full stop. That was an act of faith (or refusal to spend, choose your chalice). We seem to assess the business end through rose colored glasses: that the wounded will return in enough time, that no one else (overused, to boot) will be injured before they return, and that none of the overused (in their absence) will then go down once they return. This wishful thinking is part of the injury problem. It seems that, in principle, January windows are bad. As AW has just this year put it, they are unwanted distractions. They hold us to ransom. It’s all about silly money being demanded and spent. However, when we are being kicked to bits, chronically, and can only expect the orcshite/refshite to continue (if not increase) well into the business end, then we must (and could afford, it seems) do the necessary to continue to compete for top honors. This season could have been ours; I agree. But when January came and went with nothing but an injured purchase (who may yet help, I pray), I’d given up hope that we could outlast such odds to produce an EPL or CL result. It’s not the only reason, January spurnings, but I dare say it is one that bears serious re-thinking.

  • mark

    ts all so predecitable. Scrape into 4th place. Board absolutely desparate to hand the man who as manager of one of europes big clubs has not won a trophy for 503 games 8 million pounds a year. I agree with Kev’s point re the collapse of 2008. That seasons demise should have been the end of Wenger. The regular mobilisation of David Dein, Bob Wilson and the rest of the Arsene is god squad is embarrassing. Can someone tell them 2004 was 10 years ago?

  • hooshimine

    Giroud is the worst striker i’ve ever seen in arsenal, he is not going to make any differences he is kind of striker that needs to spoil 4 to score 1 , and wenger 4231 style needs really talented players that we haven’t had for nine bloody years to win the EPL, even Pep Guardiola couldn’t win any trophies without top players in this attacking style based on possession and box to box players, so if you are insist on your 4231 attacking style without considering your opponents please prepare some ingredients, if you are going to concede 6 goals regularly so be prepare to score 7.
    And please someone answer me What is the point of participating in the competitive football league without the intention to win it ?

  • Kos

    It’s one day on and i’m still fuming. I had to leave work early last night (suggested I go home) as my face looked a combination of a bird who’s about to cry and that drunk loon who’s looking for a punch up at closing time.We got gang banged yesterday and it was the third separate occasion this season it’s happened. You can’t be challenging for the title, set up as we did and make the same excuses when we get pummelled. It’s embarrassing the excuses some people are coming out with.I’m firmly of the belief now the Fa Cup does nothing for us going forward under wenger. Our attacking players have no defensive discipline, we don’t press as a unit, the players have a feel sorry for themselves loser mentality when games get away from them and the manager keeps making the same errors in tactis, set up and judgement.Even wenger’s transfers have been shocking. In the last 5 years the amount of shit we’ve accumulated is ridiculous.You know what, i’ll just fucking bang on all day but for me Wenger’s got to go. Thanks and all that Arsene, we’ll give you a statue but youth development or punditry is calling…One last thing; Our best striker (Bendtner) wasn’t given a chance this season and then he lost the plot (again). We’ve played a fucking no mark bambi on ice wannabe postman when our main striker (who isn’t burnt out, just shit) the worst in years, disrespects the club on match days then has the cheek to play like a cunt who’s been sleeping on the sofa at his mates house whilst his marriage sorts itself out.We haven’t improved we’ve hovvered sideways and got lucky all home draws in the cup.There’s still a massive building job on and wenger’s activity in the market hinders our progress.If he stays and we fanny about trying to penny pinch targets after the world cup’s done, I am not watching us next season repeat the same old shit.Oh and some of these players need a fucking slap. Szczesney, wilshere and all these little horrible gobby over paid cunts need to get off twitter, stop fucking about, knuckle down and start grafting.I’m done, pub time!

  • mark

    we were never in the title race only the deluded and the stupid believed we were.We are in a race for 4th as we always are.We are a million miles behind the top 3.Wenger is tactically clueless.He goes to Anfield and the Bridge and has Flamini on the bench.The lessons of the Liverpool game were not learned.Where as Jose who is a great tactical coach who knows teams weaknesses attacked us down the left side our weak side.The time has come for the excuses to end.Stop burying you heads in the sand Gooners Wenger has to go.It wasnt a coincidence thet the 1,000th game tributes have very little about the last 500.Today was worse than the 8-2.Just remember this our board are offering our Specialist in Failure a £24m contract.Maybe Gazdis and Kroenke believe losing by 5 and 6 twice is what makes a title winning team

  • bob

    “we were never in the title race only the deluded and the stupid believed we were.”
    I resemble that remark, mark. Deluded and Stupid. Imo cretinous opinion, then: We were in it by the start of January. Fact. Top of the league. The Theo goes down. Then we do spurnings of the window, instead of signings. Whether in the summer or at the top of January or both, serious (if overpaid, but affordable) money for another (plan B) capable to near-clinical striker (and post-Song hard man) would have made a huge difference. If not a win, then at least a fight to the finish.

  • dan


    I do think many of the issues you mention will be addressed, but the problem is our setup for the big games.

  • never in the title race?? hmmm are you sure?

  • bob

    to your point, having a second quality complementary striker would have provided us with a Plan B two-striker (cf. Liverpool) option to at least try. A tactical variation, when one mode doesn’t work for all times. To that extent, if I read you correctly, I’d have to agree.

  • pete

    Haven’t had a chance to read all the comments, but since everyone is going on about 17 goals conceded away to MC/Chelsea/Liverpool, why is no one talking about only 1 goal conceded at home to Chelsea, Liverpool, Everton, Spurs, MU?

    It is just knee-jerk, knee-jerk, knee-jerk: only focused on the last result, no depth whatsoever.

    Yes, yesterday was appalling. But I thought the 5-1 at Liverpool was worse. And would also rank the 8-2 and 6-1 at MU in years gone by as worse. And the countless times we went away to a mediocre clogging team from the north and scarcely managed a shot in a 1-0 defeat. In some ways, they were worse as well.

    In 1,000 games, the worst 1% of performances amount to 10 games. Yesterday was probably 1 of those 10. Liverpool was definitely one.

    Bottom line, as I wrote yesterday, this season is (so far) statistically superior to last season. Therefore Arsenal are progressing in the right direction. Approx 50% of clubs must be going backwards (as football is a zero sum game). We have no divine right to be anywhere.

  • its not knee jerk when everyone in the land could predict in january that this would happen,if we didnt strengthen

  • its not knee jerk when everyone in the land could predict in january that this would happen,if we didnt strengthen

  • Brickfields Gunners

    WOW !Some of you have a lot to say . Ever think of starting your own blogs , pressure groups or even chip in and start a ‘Smart Aleck Fund ‘ to save Arsenal FC.
    Should not to a problem as everyone ( millions I say !) knew , predicted and of course now know how to rectify the situation .
    You have my sincerest best wishes in your very noble endeavours. Good luck and godspeed .Astalavista ,babe !
    Really !
    Why is there laughter in here ,Tony ?

  • Kos

    Sadly we are just good enough for top 4 and nothing else. Extremely lucky SAF retired or we’d be out of the top 4 for sure I think. We are owned by not one but 2 billionaires, yet can’t compete for title? We come close to a complete team each year but then depend on the likes of Arteta, Giroud, Sanogo, Kallstrom et. al to save us because we fail in the transfer market each year. We don’t buy superstars, we build them? Not anymore. Failure is boring and depressing. My springs as an Arsenal fan have been littered with too many disappointments and too few joys these last 9 years. What bothers me the most is people involved with club keep acting like we are trying to win things! I too don’t care too much for Mo, but his failure comment seems spot on, sadly. Yesterday Wenger received a golden cannon. Surely that was for the profits and sustainability and not any success? The man once led a great team but is now a wannabe who just doesn’t get the job done. I even find writing now a waste of my time as I don’t necessarily see things changing even if he goes. But, it’s dams sure worth a try, isn’t it? This is AFC we are talking about FFS! 

  • mark

    Would hate to hear the apologists shoot you down for not writing a balanced article. The whole thing has just got tedious now. We’ve had the same shortcomings and faults for the last 5 years. We’re just going round in ever decreasing circles, and it looks like we’ve got another 3 years of the same. At Liverpool and Chelsea this season, we looked more like a non league team going there for a day out in the Cup. That’s probably a disservice to the Skrill Premier League, because I think most of its representatives would have gone to these games with some sort of game plan expecting the initial onslaught. Whereas we were dead and buried after 10 minutes in both these games, the likes of Luton and Cambridge would still be in the game at this point. And herein lies the problem. Non league teams out of their depth, would recognise this and adapt. Our team of overpaid primadonnas and the clown in charge think they are above this. The fact that we can stuff Norwich at home and the plaudits we get for playing Sunderland off the park makes us think we are impregnable. After all, when average players are picking up £60k/week, you’d expect them to think they’re the bees knees, and this justifies them sauntering around. As for we can still register 86 points etc, leave that to Arseblog. He may have the no 1 following, but his ‘sitting on the fence’ to appease everyone is bland. I feel you have been holding back on your true feelings of this farce to achieve a ‘balanced’ view. I’ve seen the criticisms against you when we’ve beaten Fulham and the fact you’re not jumping up and down like you’ve won the lottery attracts criticism. Leave that to the apologists. Their excuse making is an art form to be admired. They’ll be back in force on Tuesday night after a resounding win over Swansea to put all the doubters back in their place.

  • Kos

    Bravo, Great post. Look the problem with wenger is that he just does not know how to win the BIG games anymore. This is not something knew. Last season we did not beat any of the teams that finished ahead of us and the same will happen this season as I do not see us beating man city even at home. We will be lucky to get a draw smh. Also alot of akb’s defend wenger based on sentimental past glories, it has nothing do with footballing reasons. Its all about what he did in hes first 9 years as the second 9 years have been a abject failure. He has not won a trophy since hes 497 game when we won the FA CUP in 2005. So hes other 500 games have been years of failing. What mournhio said about him was true, yes it was a bit crass and nasty, but it was true. As they say the truth hurt. Wenger just does not learn from hes defeats he is so deluded and stubborn. The blueprint to beat arsenal convincingly has been established this season. Man city exhibited it with their 6-3 mauling of us then so did liverpool with their 5-1 drumming of us, now chelsea have done it as well with their 6-0 thrashing of us. TO beat arsenal you have to press them high with high intensity and they will make errors in the middle of the park and then you have to expose the space they will leave as you will have alot of space to run it and just hit them with fast pace and passes. That is the blueprint but one man seems oblivious to it smh. Is it downright arrogance or stubbornness folks??? I think its a mixture of both. Also where do I start with some of the folks that play for us. Well I will start with Arteta as he was the worst guy on the pitch. HE IS NOT A DEFENSIVE MID and never was. Why in the hell does wenger keep playing him?? He has no pace what so ever, he could not out run a old age pensioner. For Gods sake the guy is slow. He has not athletic ability that I can see to play that role and he has no power. All three important ingredients needed to play that position. Yet one man persists in playing him there. HMMM who is that then folks??? Also lets not forget arteta was a panic buy after the 8-2 mauling with took at manure smh. Another decision of the SPECIALIST IN FAILURE. Now Giroud. Where on earth to I start with thsi donkey lamp post?? Well when you pay 10 million for a striker this what you get a a very,very average player. A striker who can not hit a barn door with a banjo. He has made Ozil look bad this season as they are on completely different wave lengths. Ozil needs a striker with pace to playing with him. With giroud there is no point even playing through balls lool or any balls over the top, the guy is so slow its unreal lool. Yes he is are top goal scorer as the akbs will protest and shout about, well that should tell you all you need to know about arsenal under wenger for the last 8 years. A club full of mediocre egotistical players with no fight and no steel all on some type of socialist wage bill as wenger said last season. So we pay quite a few average fools 60k a week lool. Anyway back to giroud he needs to go back to France to save hes marriage. He is not good enough to main striker for any team thinking about challenging for the title. He would not even start for any of the top 7 teams let alone 4. That is how low arsenal have fallen under wenger folks. Are midfield today was non existent. Time and time again both Mertasacker and Koschinely had chelsea players running at them one on one over and over again. WHY IN GODS EARTH WAS FLAMINI not playing?? yes I know he played when city mulled us with their 6-3 but he would have done a better job than the old age pensioner arteta. Also I believe we will not win the FA cup I really dont think we will. Even with the pathetically easy draw we now have. This team is full of bottlers. Why will Wigan fear Arsenal when they beat city at the Etihad with only two other teams having done that. Them being one of those teams two teams. Wenger is now becoming a caricature of himself. The man looks lost out there he looks like he knows the games up. If you can not motivate your players to play for you on your 1000th game then the times up for you I’m afraid. Where was the fight?? The spirit?? All looked like losers not economically of course lool but footballing wise.Again wenger can not beat Mournhio and that record does not look like changing. Wenger looks a tactically naive. Im sorry but he does for a man with 1000 games under hes belt he looks like a novice when it comes to tactics. He has to GO ASAP. I have been consistent with that view since 2009 so the akbs can not call me FICKLE.

  • Micheal Ram

    Come on, you fellas. If you just dropped your balls somewhere like your wife’s purse, dont release it here. This is a pro Wenger site and please don’t repeat the same complains that you fellas release in other sites. You fellas keep saying the same thing when Arsenal loses and silent when they win. What are you? If you want turn to the dark side, please do it at your own peril. Nobody especially Arsenal FC gives a shit what you think, who you critize and what you want. Arsenal FC are run by proper people who thinks about the next generation. All legal and ethical. If you think that you can screw other women because your wife not up to it anymore, please dont do it as Arsenal fan. It is a disgrace for people like me. We are as loyal to our manager and players as they have been loyal to us in bad times. If you think a person can just splash RM140M as how he wants, stop for a second and think about the amount of people in this world who needs money for more noble purpose. Or maybe your wife insults you because you cant earn enough to please her. The RM140M is not yours and the person responsible for it is Arsene. I tell this because if we did a totty why of spending and outcome, you will blame the French guy. So the problem is you fellas who are not content with your personal life. Get it sorted out, get rid of the hatred, get out of the pathetic bubble and live your life. Then you can see and feel the real beauty of Arsenal FC.

  • Brickfields Gunners

    Just think that this may help many .
    Goodnight guys .


    There is only one way to write properly (Yes, you spotted it!). It is to write in such a way that your meaning is clear to the reader. It’s as easy as that!

  • bob

    “WOW !Some of you have a lot to say . Ever think of starting your own blogs , pressure groups or even chip in and start a ‘Smart Aleck Fund ‘ to save Arsenal FC.”
    So where’s your customary 6-7 straight clusters of your jokes? I think always playing the court jester doesn’t work wonders on some occasions, like this one. Everyone here, no matter which way they argue, isn’t simply a dolt, or bloviator, or a drive-by insult-machine. Rather than take the time to take on any content, pro or con, you resort today to dull if snarky insults. How about trying to do an actual analysis sometime, instead of clowning. Like for like. Some people are trying – because they care to figure out what is going wrong. For you, everyone who tries to do so is just a self-promoting asshole. Or is it only those you don’t agree with, but won’t take on point by point?

  • mark

    @michaelram…wtf? What is the battle cry before the game? Surely you learn the lessons of the previous maulings? Keep it tight first 20. Don’t give anything away. Instead we are cut apart, playing a high line and the game is over before it’s begun. Even at 2-0 down its not’s irretreivable if we can stay in it until the last 15. Still we play the same way. Fans short changed again and Bully must be doing his nut on Fans tv. How many more false dawns. Thanks for the memories but please go. I used to look forward to Spring. Fellow Gooners, I feel your pain

  • Kos

    The special one had not lost a game at home for ages. By the law of averages ,he was due a loss..Sadly Wenger failed and was humiliated yet again. The defeats to MC and Pool shd have made him aware of the need for a more focussed defence.Instead he opted more or less the same approach. He wants Arsenal to play like in the Norwich game when Wilshire slotted the ball. Chelsea are miles apart from Norwich. His tactical naivety has been exposed time and again by the big teams. Yet he show s no wish to change his one dimensional style.Sadly he has no one to blame but himself. He is too arrogant for the ARSENAL brand. I say thanks for the memory.Failure to win against Wigan will be catastrophic. It will lead to earthquake among the fans.Win the FA cup and leave .On paper it looks easy but Wigan won’t let Arsenal play the passing football.They will harass every gunner.After getting the better of MC,the Lactics will be fired up. Wenger,you have been warned

  • bob

    “Arsenal FC are run by proper people who thinks about the next generation.”
    Michael Ram,
    You’re thoughtful and respectful. In this posting, you are knee-jerk in your passionate defense. With all respect for past entries, for this one I must guffaw out loud: Tell this sanctimony to the owner’s wife whose fortune derives from a top-top company that doesn’t pay minimum wage, the wrecks all small town enterprises, that doesn’t hire full time work, and that uproots landscapes with city-size stores and carbonic parking lots. Perhaps that’s just fine with you, but for some with open eyes, it doesn’t perfume the sad reality.

  • Sod Gunner

    For those who say we were never in the title race this season, what do call playing the leaders with 9 games to go with a game in hand and only 4 points in it?? However I think that the biggest obstacle to our chances have been our application and tactics to important away games. Teams without half the ability and quanlity of Arsenal have gone to city, Liverpool and chelsea and put in more professional and organised performances, while we have been a shambles. In important games you really see what progress you are making. While I am not mad about the transfer window in January, we failed to utilise it when we were aware of the injuries to Walcott and Ramsey and the signing of Kallstrom and his injury was a joke. I think most supporters are just so frustrated as like in 2008 and 2011 there was a real chance to win the league but we fell short and it looks like happening again. If we had a top class striker, which we didn’t last season and still don’t our chances would have been so much better for the title.

  • Kos

    I know some of Arsenal fans don’t appreciate my comments but it’s OK. But listen to this ; if Martino fail to win any trophy this season, Barca will show him the exit door. The same goes to Ancelotti, he will be long gone if Madrid fail to win any trophy this season. Jose Mourinho will resign if Chelsea fail to win a trophy in less than three seasons. David Moyes will not be at Man United after next season without a trophy. In fact he may not be there next season unless United won the Champions League. Manuel Pellegrini was given five years to win at least five trophies or face the music and he accepted. He’s got one down and four to go. The same goes to Inter Milan, AC Milan, Bayern, Dortmund, Juventus and all the big guns alike. They don’t have room to entertain failure as we have seen in Arsenal in the last nine years. This season alone we have endured the greatest loses ever to the big teams since the Premier league. Three in a row by 17 goals margin. Arsenal fans deserve better

  • TommieGun

    What a load of bullshit. There is such a huge differnce between looking at what happened yesterday, and talking shit.

    I am not going to quote people, but shitheads, when I’m talking about you, you know it’s true.

    “We do not press as a unit” – dumbass, did you watch the game played @ Dortmund? It was THIS season. It was the definition of pressure. So please.

    “Giroud is the worst striker in the world” – Come on. 12 goals. 7 assists. 7.38 total score in whoscored, which is better than … Higuain! with 7.16.

    “No tactical change” – another stupid comment. THIS team beat dortumund, Napoli, Liverpool, was robbed against City (in their best form). The problem for us is not tactics. It’s losing possession in midfield, and having both your center backs look at Andre Schurle stroll to the box. Its not giving a fuck.

    And it goes on and on. The board, the beer @ the Ems, the sandwiches.

    The only thing I can remotely agree to, is that we could have had better luck with injuries and as a result maybe could have done with some signings. But people like to write “SURELY there would have been someone better than Sanogo”. And I’m just saying – accept your own challenge, douchebag – WHO? Who should have been bought in January? Moratta? We tried. Ancellotti didn’t want to release him. Who else?

    Last sentence from me –

    On a day like this we should stick together, and remain honest. It was a painful display by players who, for me, had let me down big time. They didn’t want it enough and for me that’s the malaise in this team. Out of nowhere, they just start losing the killer mentality. And this thing is unacceptable. But the rest of you taking it out on Wenger and the board, etc – get a life, losers.

  • Kos

    17 goals in just 3 games v Liverpool City Chelsea is a disgrace.Not even Fulham do that.The reason is Wenger doesnt do tactics.You can get away with it against the lower teams but against the big teams you will get killed like we have its bleeding obvious.It makes you wonder what the team actually do in training other than playing one touch 5 a side.Yesterday was a Flamini game yet he was left on the bench while the snail like Arteta was crushed by the Chelsea midfield.You cant go toe to toe with the big teams.But Wenger wont learn what did he learn from the Liverpool game a month a ago?.Yesterday like the Liverpool game the game was over in 10 mins.Whatever you say about Jose he is a master coach he had a game plan.Its no surprise Wenger hasnt beaten him in 11 games.Watching Arsenal in the big games is now verging on cruelty.So once again we will creep into 4th and reward our tactically clueless manager a new 4 year contract.How mad is that?The really sad thing is Wenger still has his followers and defenders.Dont they hurt when we get spanked by 6,5 and 6 goals.I just wonder how many more of these spankings(which will continue to happen)do we have to put up with till these deluded fans finally realise Wenger has to go

  • Kos

    17 goals in just 3 games v Liverpool City Chelsea is a disgrace.Not even Fulham do that.The reason is Wenger doesnt do tactics.You can get away with it against the lower teams but against the big teams you will get killed like we have its bleeding obvious.It makes you wonder what the team actually do in trnaining other than playing one touch 5 a side.Yesterday was a Flamini game yet he was left on the bench while the snail like Arteta was crushed by the Chelsea midfield.You cant go toe to toe with the big teams.But Wenger wont learn what did he learn from the Liverpool game a month a ago?.Yesterday like the Liverpool game the game was over in 10 mins.Whatever you say about Jose he is a master coach he had a game plan.Its no surprise Wenger hasnt beaten him in 11 games.Watching Arsenal in the big games is now verging on cruelty.So once again we will creep into 4th and reward our tactically clueless manager a new 4 year contract.How mad is that?The really sad thing is Wenger still has his followers and defenders.Dont they hurt when we get spanked by 6,5 and 6 goals.I just wonder how many more of these spankings(which will continue to happen)do we have to put up with till these deluded fans finally realise Wenger has to go

  • Mandy Dodd

    starting their own blogs, unfortunately many today would not have the imagination to….quite a few cut and paste merchants, half of them Spuds as well I would wager.
    Kos at 2.50, you said you were done ….and off down the pub….why were you back less than an hour later? Just couldn’t stay away eh?
    Still….up to you I guess

  • bob,

    On your retort to Brickfields Gunners (who, surprise surprise, I agree with), I never knew that his “cluster of jokes” upset you so much. I think it would have been classier to complain about the jokes when they were posted rather than have a pop when the jokes are not the issue.

    I also think that you and the numerous new posters here giving lectures on what is wrong with Arsenal and Arsene Wenger are wasting your time here and are only adding insult to injury by not allowing the Untold regulars to mourn the poor performance and get on with the task of supporting the club as we consider to be our role. Myself and other Untold regulars who get to read your repetitive verdicts can do none of the REPEATEDLY suggested nuggets of wisdom. The people who can put your excellently thought out ideas into actions have no idea that you are making any suggestions, so they are NEVER going to do anything about it.

    In other word, while your analyses (one which you advised BG to also engage in) might make you feel good, it is a waste of time for the formentioned reasons. Why not just send these great theses to the decision makes of Arsenal FC rather than continue to repeat yourself on a blog whose mission is the antithesis of what you are doing?

    No offence intended but I think you could do something more constructive with your time than preach to the hard-hearted heathens here on Untold Arsenal. We are beyond redemption.

  • Macduff

    “To the next level” is the same as saying Cesc has Barcelona in his DNA.”

    An absolutely ridiculous statement, total garbage. How the author can compare the wishes of a player to go play for his hometown club that was a huge part of his childhood to the phrase ‘To the next level’ is insane. ‘To the next level’ obviously means improvement, a very common and often inherent ambition for any individual or institution. ‘To the next level’ for a Championship club means getting to the PL. Then to the next level would be PL consolidation. The next level might be Europe, then to the CL, then challenge for the PL, then maybe win the PL.

    The problem is we have been stuck at the same level for the last decade and I guess that is why there is a lot of conflict on these pages. The UA Arsene apologists are happy to plod along in 4th, safety first, no risks. The rest of us are striving for improvement.

    Further, to even suggest that top players even see Arsenal as a club that is ‘targeted’ is laughable, and its preposterous to think a top player would take that into account before joining us.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Just been reading the club have gone into lockdown, the pre Swansea press conference cancelled, none of the usual player tweets doing the rounds.
    Good news, wenger knows what happened yesterday was very wrong, and will be working on this for all he is worth.

  • TommieGun (@4.33pm),

    Great points. Especially the bit about Giroud. That guy is the favourite scapegoat of the moaners and doomers. When we lost 5-1 at Liverpool, it was his fault, he was also responsible for us losing 6-0 yesterday because he missed a good chance. I can understand blaming s striker for a narrow loss or drawn games but why would any sane and honest person single out a striker for blame when a team loses by 2 or more goal margins?

    Thank for providing his stats for the whiners to see. None of them remembers it now but Tony is right about the Henry/Giroud comparison and there was criticism of the TT back then too.

  • Strus

    The last match was real misery, worst of all other 999 of Wenger reign. Hopefully no one get mental wounds after that. It was always 3 points, the goal difference was bad before that match.
    Arsenal then had to finish stronger than in the last years and finally get a FA Cup as first trophy, finally ending the drought.

    Last 5 seasons points of 30 similar matches in this season:
    62 13/14
    60 12/13
    53 11/12
    52 10/11
    58 09/10

    62 or more p;oints gained:
    12/13 64 after 34 matches
    11/12 63 after 36 matches
    10/11 62 after 34 matches
    09/10 62 after 32 matches

  • sperez

    ‘This defeat is my fault, I take full responsibility for it.’ Really ? How long has the word ‘accountability’ been part of Wenger’s volabulary ?
    ‘I don’ t think there’s too much need to talk about the mistakes we made.’
    Sure, there’s no need…Words of a clown. If you had paid attention to the mistakes you’ve made, you could have learned one thing or two about tactics, avoiding the humiliation horror shows.

    ‘I am so sick and tired of all you so called fans that talk crap about the club every fucking opportunity they get. ‘
    You really should be sick and tired of the humiliation Arsenal constantly suffers because of Wenger.

  • AL

    Well said. Some people just have to find a scapegoat for anything and everything. Giroud is being targeted again, but his stats are better than any striker at Chelsea(yes, the same Chelsea that is ‘out of our league’), United,Spurs,etc. In fact, of the teams in the top 10 (no need to look at the bottom half,waste of time) you’ve to go to City and Liverpool only to find players with better stats. But he’s supposed to be the worst striker ever???

    I think we’re wasting our time though trying to debate this with 90% of people we had never seen on here till yesterday. They have their own agenda, period.

  • Macduff

    sperez, it is very easy to take responsibility for something where there are NO consequences. Taking responsibility would be facing the press but Le Coward has gone into hiding

  • dan

    For those calling Giroud a waste, get real. Giroud is class, a great target man – we lack a striker to feed off him.

    He is exactly the kind of monster we need.

  • Mahdain

    The media lockdown is very worrying. I really hope Arsene is not thinking about giving in to the idiots and fulfill their wishes but truth be told, im afraid thats what happening when the season ends and it really makes me sad. Oh God please dont let it be true 🙁

  • TommieGun

    @ Mahdain – exactly, I am thinking he will leave. But not because of the media – because he would feel let down and that if he cannot motivate the team on a day like yesterday, 1000th match, against the KGB, a title decider – than maybe he shouldn’t stay.

  • sperez

    ‘Just been reading the club have gone into lockdown, the pre Swansea press conference cancelled, none of the usual player tweets doing the rounds.
    Good news, wenger knows what happened yesterday was very wrong, and will be working on this for all he is worth.’

    He’s worried about himself. His nice new contract. That’s all.

    You know there’s not many big clubs left to offer inflated wages/ no accountability to a manager so behind others in modern football.
    I wonder why some people still expect Wenger to change/addapt to modern football…
    He has proven time and time again he’s past it.
    This season against top teams the embarrassment shows were there for all to see.
    He simply can’t keep with modern tactics and to make things worse, he’s not a motivator. It’s more the other way around. His complacency and loser mentallity reflects on his players.
    when will the penny drop? How many more humiliating defeats at the hads of top teams are necessary for you all to see what it has been clear for years?
    Don’t think Wenger is worried about the club. Remember what he said regarding AC Milan and Bradford games? Just to give the impression he cares…
    Nothing has changed. He wants to fool the fans once again while collecting his exorbitant wages.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Dont think he will be leaving just yet Mahdain, do wonder if Ivan and co maybe trying to end speculation and get him to sign though, the players seem to want him to stay and him signing could lift them at a vital stage of the season

  • Mandy Dodd

    Arch anti Wengerite Myles Palmer coined the phrase “Gooner Angst” Think we are seeing some classic examples on here today

  • bjtgooner


    Didn’t Wenger miss the post match press conference too, something about catching the team bus? I don’t like the sound of it all.

    Where did you read about the lockdown?

  • Macduff

    hahaha, the players want him to stay! In other news, turkeys have voted to ban Christmas….

  • andy1886

    “Oh God please dont let it be true”

    Terminal disease? Wife run away with your teenage nephew? Are we about to see WW3 start in Ukraine? What is it man??!!

    Oh, a football manager might be retiring. Get a grip.

  • andy1886

    Nice one Mac 😉

    It’s a shame that they didn’t demonstrate that on the pitch yesterday.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Here it is Bjtgooner

    Quite a rare event by all accounts, still gettings sorted is more important than talking to the gentlemen of the press. I expect they will put something on the official site nearer the time.
    As I say, would not rule out a bit of pressure on wenger to clear things up though

  • bjtgooner

    Thanks Mandy; lets hope it is nothing more serious than trying to sort everything out pre Swansea – that should always have a higher priority than the pandering to the backstabbing guttersnipes of the press – they are nearly as bad as some of the AAA trolls that have crawled out from the underworld since yesterday.

  • andy1886

    “I believe the target of anything in life should be to do it so well that it becomes an art.” A Wenger

    Nice tagline. But which piece of art would this be?

    Might I suggest: ‘Some Comfort Gained from the Acceptance of the Inherent Lies in Everything’ by Damian Hirst (multiple cows in a line head-to-tail, divided cross-sectionally into equal rectangular tanks of formaldehyde, equally-spaced, each containing about 3 feet (0.91 m) of the animals).

    An appropriate title if nothing else and happily coincides with Arsene’s arrival in 1996.

  • Macduff

    andy1996- may I suggest ‘The Emperors New Clothes’

  • marcus

    Giroud is a good player. He would be perfectly at home in any club from Tottenham down.

    But if AFC have pretensions of glory, then you have to have a striker or two of the calibre of Aguero, Negredo, Suarez, Sturridge, Hazard, Schurrle …not to mention goal hungry midfielders. That’s the nature of the EPL these days.

  • andy1886

    Sorry Mac, the thought of witnessing that turns my stomach!

  • nicky

    Looking into my crystal ball, I can see
    1.Arsenal achieving 4th place or better and qualifying for next season’s CL.
    2.Arsenal winning this year’s FA Cup, never having to have left London.
    Then, out of the woodwork will emerge all the platitudes and praise from those of little faith, who will then claim that they never doubted Wenger’s ability to achieve success.
    It’s about time the “Jonny-come-lately” supporters of Arsenal were educated in a bit of the Club’s history.
    From time immemorial Arsenal have clutched defeat from the jaws of victory and vice versa. Have won against all odds. Have been beaten by minnows.
    Since the late 1930’s and including the year of the Invincibles, WE HAVE NEVER RETAINED A CHAMPIONSHIP.
    THAT is the sort of Club we support and what we must expect from it. It’s not for the fainthearted, who must go elsewhere to expect frequent success, forged from unsavoury foreign investment and interference.
    Those who value loyalty will stay in sure and certain knowledge that Arsenal will survive and prosper, never failing to test its world-wide support because that’s simply the way it is.

  • sperez

    As I told you when we approached the final months of the season the AKBs in Le Grove would be nowhere to be found. They’re hiding in shame.
    Reasonable people have been warning that Arsenal wouldn’t win the title and Wenger would be exposed once again. Arsenal were top because they had an easy start but they would fail when they faced the big boys.
    In January more worrying signs with Wenger’s usual dithering but the AKBs again proclaimed ‘we’re top!’Like Wenger they’ve just ignored the glaring problems in the team.
    Anyone who tried to reason with this lot was labelled haters, Spud and chelski fans, trolls…
    Now, like the past seasons they’re hiding and Wenger once more has given credibility to his doubters making himself looks like an idiot in the process…

  • nicky

    You would do well to read my 7.47 and learn a bit of history.

  • andy1886

    Nicky – what has history got to do with it? Most of us are well versed and don’t need any lessons from you thanks very much. History is what AW’s achievements are I’m afraid, it’s the future that you whould be interested in.

  • Kenneth Widmerpool

    poor old Andy, thinks he knows about Art and football.Guardian reader? Still thinks Ybas important do you? Missing the Bertie Mee years are you?
    kiss kiss isnt it time you went off to bed and read some Adorno?

  • andy1886

    No pertinent points to make then Kenneth old boy? Newspapers are sooo old hat chum, so no, I’m not. Having actually watched Arsenal for many years before Wenger then yes, I do think I know a bit. Art? not really, anyway football isn’t art unless you’re a middle class johnny come lately twonk in the prawn sandwich section. Unlike some I wont throw myself off a bridge if Arsene jacks it in, there was life before him and there will be again afterwards. Employees come and go, Arsenal will remain.

  • sperez

    History… Mr. Wenger is the longest serving manager in Arsenal’s history not to have won a trophy.

  • bjtgooner


    Your post was fine. Unfortunately some of the johnny-come-lately trolls (or previous trolls renamed) only want to rub salt into the wounds. They are impervious to any sensible debate & are a total waste of time & space.

  • andy1886

    Isn’t the suggestion that anyone who disagrees with you is a ‘Johnny-Come-Lately a little bit ignorant? Nice debating technique, name calling. I happen to disagree with you, equally you can disagree with me. Time will tell who is right, I don’t have any divine foresight and let’s face it neither do you. Feel free to explain why you think anything will change next season if Wenger stays, I’d like to hear the evidence and listen to your logical arguments. Over to you.

  • bob

    No offense taken. I think BG can speak for himself. And you’re surely not one to chastise anyone for lectures and repetition. I like free speech zones. This is a free speech zone. And we’d all do well to respect free speech, for which I thank Tony Atwood.

  • John

    Stuff the trolls. They love a defeat, so they can crawl out of the woodwork. No doubt hoping for Wigan to win the semi-final so they can rejoice in their shite criticism.

    Take away oligarch money, media fawning, referee compliance and Mourinho can be seen for what he is; a little man with an over inflated ego, who has never built a team, never mind a stadium. He hates AW because he knows that he will never be respected in the same way by the members of the world football community who actually know something about the game.

  • Notoverthehill

    Tony, the AST Financial Review on Surplus Cash is plain and simple “hogwash”

    -• Firstly, Arsenal received settlement of the property sales at Queensland Road reported in last year’s accounts. This generated over £20m in cash and leaves in excess of £60m sitting in the club’s property development subsidiary which we believe is all available to the football part of the business.-

    On the 31st May 2010, we were informed that the cumulative cash surplus amounted to some £5 millions.

    From the Financial Reviews for 31st May to 31st May was £31.4 millions before tax. Tax will probably be about £8 millions, leave some £28.5 millions including the -some £5 millions!

    IF, the AST had bothered to read the Financial Review for 31st May 2013, the Barratt payment was for some £27 millions, the final £20 millions has now been paid. The solicitor’s and estate agent’s fees have to be deducted, and eventually the tax due.

    According to the Chairman’s Report on the 30th November 2013, Half Yearly Report – NO Puma advance in the 2013/2014 Financial Report.

    Need I go any further? I have already had 2 power cuts!

  • andy1886

    So, no arguments put forward then, just more insults. Sad. Maureen’s job is to win football matches, a job he does very well. I wasn’t aware that building a stadium was in the remit of a manager, and I’m pretty sure that it will never appear anywhere on the club’s list of honours. It certainly will not eclipse winning the CL, something Maureen, the man who will ‘never be respected’ seems able to do where Arsene repeatedly fails. This isn’t about ‘liking’ the man, just plain facts. It’s a shame that those who apparantly ‘know something about the game’ cannot put that knowledge to use and actually equal the record of a man who is apparently so inferior.

  • Mandy Dodd

    My post are going missing, that’s why I put in two near identical posts!

  • Pat

    Hi Tony. Just read your article. Haven’t got time to read the 140 plus comments.

    Great article. I agree with you 100 per cent. In yesterday’s Telegraph they had quotes from Arsene Wenger’s press conference before the Chelsea match. Among them he said just what you said – that we will be adding a few players in summer. Clearly our squad doesn’t go from good to crap even after losing 6 – 0 to Chelsea.

    We bounced back from our other big losses and we will do from this one too.

  • sperez

    I’m failing to see what lack of tactics, poor motivation/selection, inability to adapt to the modern game and outdated methods have to do with history here…Oh the excuses!!!

  • WalterBroeckx

    OMG Where have you andy1886, Madcuff, and others been hiding when we have been top of he league for 18 matchdays?
    Did it hurt that much at the time that you now have to come over ‘to rub it in’?
    You knew it would happen? You HOPED it would happen. You hoped it would happen so you could come out of your gutter where you have been hiding all those weeks. So now you got it your way for the moment. And you are not hurt by the defeat. You are full of joy. Finally you can rub it in to the AKB. You did have to wait an awful long period didn’t you?

    A few weeks ago I wrote an article about your type of plastic fan. The type that denied to be trophy hunters. I only want us to compete. But from the moment we compete and being top of the league for 18 match days IS COMPETING, you are only satisfied when we win it.

    So the question that was asked by Dennis Bergkamp is asked at you: do you love Arsenal for the trophies or do you love Arsenal because they are The Arsenal? I know what I support. You support them for the trophies. that is made clear by your comments.

    And the big difference between you and us AKB is that we want Arsenal to do well. And when Wenger is gone we will still support Arsenal and want them to do well. I deliberately not say we want them to win something. I would love them to win something. But those things are not just in our hands alone.

    But you lot don’t want Arsenal to do well at all for now. No you want us to lose as much as possible so we can get rid of that French (you do love to bring up his nationality a bit too much) whatever you call him.
    In your hate against Wenger you want Arsenal to do bad. In fact I think you would hate it if we would win the FA cup and as a result he would sign a new contract. You would be absolutely gutted.

    The only thing you really want is Wenger out. Maybe we should hire Moyes after he has been sacked at MU in recent future?

  • nicky

    @Andy 1886,
    You miss the point and cannot see the wood for the trees.
    I was trying to draw attention to the fact that so many immature supporters of our great Club do not realise our history and how it has an indelible effect on the way in which the Club proceeds to this day.
    For you to question Arsene Wenger’s achievements since his appointment, merely reveals your total ignorance of even recent history.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Good points well made Walter. See some the trophy boys on certain sites are now saying the FA Cup, should we win it now will not be enough, these same people who said wenger would never again win a trophy. Bizarre, you have to worry about the mental health of some. Of course a few are spuds, many of the rest, the talk radio generation, people who can only process opinions if spoon fed them

  • Mike T


    Its taken the best part of 150 comments before someone hits the nail on the head

    AW quite simply is or has been allowed to step way outside areas where a football manager should focus his attention.
    AW isn’t the moral guardian of Arsenal, he isn’t the accountant or even a director his focus should be on matters football, of course he should be cash aware but if the claims from the Arsenal hierarchy are right and he has significant funds available and has failed to spend then either they are content with what the team has achieved or possibly even more of a concern is that AW has become bigger than the club.

  • sperez

    ‘The only thing you really want is Wenger out. Maybe we should hire Moyes after he has been sacked at MU in recent future?’
    I fear Wenger also has a saying on his successor…
    Tht’s why the club needs football people upstairs so they can make the best decision regardless of the sentimental attachment to the manager leaving…
    Anyway, Moyes should be judge correctly in his next season. I don’t think he’ll succeed, but…
    Under Wenger, everyone knows what to expect ‘the battle for 4th place trophy’. People are getting tired of the same thing over and over again.

    ‘And the big difference between you and us AKB is that we want Arsenal to do well.’
    Wishful thinking here.
    What does the club have to waste more time with someone who has proven time and time again he simply doesn’t have the skills to compete at the highest level anymore? This sentimentalism towards Wenger is holding the club back.

  • bob,

    Please research the “free speech” before invoking it. Unless there are cops at your door to arrest you for your posts here, then quoting free speech is irrelevant in this context.

    An appeal for calm is not too much to ask from supporters of our club at times like this but if you have some great analyses, send them over to those who can use them rather than people who are either uninterested in or incapable of putting your ideas to any use. It is a sensible suggestion.

    Brickfields Gunners’s comment for which you had a go at him was not directed to you personally so it is odd for you to complain about me responding to you too. Besides, BG has stood up for me a few times in the past too.

    It is not my intention to antagonise you. Emotions always run high after losses like yesterday’s but it is important that we don’t go over the top in our critiques of the manager and players.

  • bjtgooner

    @Mike T

    It’s not a good time for you to comment on Arsenal affairs – I enjoyed the last debate I had with you – but this is not the time for you to feed a troll.

  • Mike T


    Nope you are probably right so apologies

  • Mandy Dodd

    Mike T, your posts reflect the views held by many but there are one or two ifs in there. We do not know the full extent of funding, we know there is money, but we do not know how much wenger has had available, or if it is Stan borrowing collateral, if there has been a serious wage cap, or any other multitude of complications in acquiring players unless you go right over the odds from the start. All we know is that all things transfer wise, and wages wise are improving, and that wenger has worked with constraints not faced by other top four managers, or indeed some outside the top four.I agree wenger has more influence, and perhaps more duties than most managers, maybe since Dein was removed, but if he really has all that power and is performing all those roles, it is nothing short of amazing he has kept us in Europe. IF he really is doing all that, I would expect his new deal to ensure more focus on the day job, for the sake of his health and longevity if nothing else

  • Mike T,

    I love it when Chelsea fans come over here to ‘advise’ Arsenal fans on how to run a club. I don’t know why you keep doing this but since that inept AW has been with Arsenal, he has given us something that will endure more than the trinkets that Abrahmovic has purchased for you guys. We have a stadium that basically cements our status in the comity of top clubs in the world. It is a big fucking deal.

    Your team won yesterday and it was a well deserved victory but that does not give you any foresight on how Arsenal should be run or what SUPPOSED powers the club’s manager should be limited to.

    On another note, I congratulate you on finding Arsenal ‘fans’ who validate your opinion on how fucked up the club is.

  • Kenneth Widmerpool

    Mike T, your points are pure conjecture,(evidence please?)I dont think anyone here considers Wenger somekind of moral guardian but they do respect a man that transformed a club( and without oligarchs backing) that is totally admired outside of the insel.Im sure the management would at Chelsea would love to see him gone as much as a large section of our own supporters.
    Good points Walter, as always mate!

  • sperez

    ‘See some the trophy boys on certain sites are now saying the FA Cup, should we win it now will not be enough, these same people who said wenger would never again win a trophy.’
    Well, remember when Wenger didn’t care about these cups? Now, he is desperate to win it again. Let’s see if this will be another Birmingham.
    It will be good to win the FA Cup but you know deep down it’s just papering over the cracks.

  • andy1886

    Hmmm, it seems free speech isn’t appreciated here. My lengthy response to Walter has somehow vanished. Nice. If that actually gets through I’ll try again.

  • dan

    El classico what a fantastic game,

    Still see some bollox brewing comments spewing the same song, give it rest now

  • Shard

    Let’s see what happens at the end of the season. Some people’s biggest fear must be that Arsenal actually win a trophy this year. Because actually IF Arsenal do win the FA Cup, and trophies are the ONLY barometer of success, as we’ve been told time and time again, then surely they can’t and won’t demand the manager be replaced. Right?? Right??

    Or are we seeing an acknowledgment that trophies aren’t the be all and end all? I’m confused..

    These were the same people telling us to forget even the top 4, deriding the achievement while using a potential scenario where we don’t achieve that as a way to castigate the club. Then these were the same people asking for the league position to be sacrificed for a chance at a more ‘gettable’ trophy. Now these people think not winning the title is failure. Do they even think about what they say or are they too busy playing darts with Wenger’s face as the bullseye?

  • andy1886

    Okay, maybe there is a word limit or something so this time I’ll make it briefer.

    First of all, why the need for the insults? Is a different opinion really that scary that you have to stoop that low? Emotion aside let’s address you comments then Walter:

    Where have I been? Nowhere any different actually, I wanted to see what the general mood was on the blog and decided to offer an opinion. Simple. Being top of the league was fantastic but I didn’t feel that it would last and sadly that’s the way it turned out. Hardly a shock but does it make me happy? No, I wanted us to win it and if we had done all that we could but had still failed then fair enough. But we didn’t, we made the same mistakes all over again. Is it any wonder I’m disappointed? The ‘gutter’ comment really isn’t worthy of a blog like this, it really isn’t.

    As for ‘plastic’ fan, you really don’t know that at all. Another baseless assumption and crude insult. In over 40 years supporting the club through thick and thin, standing in a foot of water in the pouring rain at the Vetch Field, freezing to death amongst 17,000 midweek against Wimbledon and other assorted horrors when football fans were ‘scum’ in the 70’s and 80’s I have never been ‘plastic’. The club has had plenty of support both vocal and financial from me.

    The fact is I would love us to win the FA Cup and then see Arsene retire gracefully because I believe that would be best for the club in the long term Walter. Feel free to review my comments and remind me of any insult to club or manager, because you your indignation is way off beam. We both want the best for Arsenal, we differ on the way forward, but that’s no reason to castigate someone is it?

    As for the idea that I have anything against anyone because of their nationality, colour, religion or gender that I’m afraid is deeply offensive and unbecoming of a blog like this. An apology would be nice but I wont hold my breath. Let’s stick to reasoned and logical arguments and maybe we can have a bit more respect for each other. I will continue to argue my viewpoint regardless of any insults you care to offer, and if I’m proved wrong I’ll have the decency to show my face and admit it. Let’s hope that you will have the guts to do the same.

  • Mandy Dodd

    You are confused….not as confused as they are Shard. Some in a post Chelsea meltdown, others in a potential trophy anxiety meltdown, a fear that they might not get to vent their fury if we actually win the thing, having said wenger would never win a trophy. Of course we have won nothing for now, there are no guarantees, but Must be giving a few sleepless nights, those who have invested so much time and energy in arsenal failing. They are preparing their excuses already just in case….a recent post suggested an FA cup win would be papering over cracks and all that sort of thing. It is actually possible for some genuine arsenal fans to want wenger to leave, but want the club to succeed, as for those who want us to fail, assuming they are actually Arsenal fans, which in many cases is doubtful in their little bubble world , they have created an FA cup exit strategy whereby they win if we win , they win if they lose, in anyone else’s world, they are just losers ….end of.

  • bjtgooner

    There seems to be a standard troll format – make sarcastic comments, insult etc – then pretend to have been reasonable all along but insulted by responses – this is used to make a song and dance about the imagined insult – followed by the plea for reasonable debate on the troll’s terms.

    I have noted this performance previously. In general the response should be – don’t feed the troll.

  • Mandy Dodd

    And before the trolls get there first, Per is showing he has a sense of humour, despite the way this was reported, he was just messing!

  • andy1886

    Feel free to cut and paste my insult(s)bjt. The only ones that I can recall were directed at me in particular by someone who should know better. ‘Gutter’, ‘Plastic’, and suggested Xenophobia – what exactly are these if not insults? Of course anyone with a different view is a troll, and all rights to freedom of speech can therefore be immediately dispensed with. Blinkered.

  • andy1886

    Of course it was said in jest. Anyone who has heard Per speak knows that he’s a really intelligent guy, he’s not daft enough to actually think something like that for real. BTW the Arsene to quit rumours are spreading, but for those of a delicate disposition I wouldn’t worry, it wont happen, it’s just journo’s selling newspapers.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Don’t know if you are a troll or not Andy, don’t really care either. Nothing wrong with freedom of speech and nothing wrong with debate, but you stand as much chance of changing minds on here as some of us would do on Le Grove… a waste of time. Feel free to try though…in the spirit of freedom of speech and all that.
    Just seen your comment to Nicky, you may know your history, but though you may not have any reason to know it , Nicky, like I guess all of us has lived Arsenals history,, but just a bit longer than most, he has been a fan since the 1930s, he has lived a bit of other history as well,

  • Mandy Dodd

    Agree with you on that Andy, wenger will not quit. He will go one day, but in his own time on his own terms

  • andy1886

    Thanks Mandy, I’m not here to wind anyone up, just to argue my viewpoint. And I don’t object to anyone disagreeing with me as long as it doesn’t descend into insults. Fair play to Nicky and the rest, it can be tough being a Gooner sometimes and tempers will flare, but there is room for all of us after all. Nobody can really say what will happen over the next two or three years, it’s merely opinions. Like I said, I could be totally wrong about everything, and you and anyone else can call me up on that if that’s the case. I guess we will see in due course.

  • para

    Quote: “I’d sooner player for a club that isn’t targeted. ”
    This rather worries me if it continues that players do not want to come to Arsenal for that reason.
    That said, still think we will be getting some new players to build up the squad in areas needed, as the team is growing and changing all the time.

  • para

    @ bob says:
    “In full flow we still play the most attractive football in the land and we should be appreciative of that.”

    I really do not think this is true anymore, Arsenal style is played more by other teams now, and i sometimes do not know what we are playing. We seem to have lost that style of playing that was ours, and now we are playing much differently than before. Although this is mainly due to players missing and the structure of the team changed through injuries, i do think it has given other players time playing, who probably would not have got much chance without all the injuries we have.

  • sukebe

    hey where have you guys haters been? bob and others?

    is this the way you guys define the word “supporting”? by giving bad mouth every time a huge defeat and silence on the victories?

    ah well, “Free speech”? LOL kid’s speech more likely…

  • sukebe

    something i agree is, we played horribly, probably the worst in account of the quality of the players fielded…

    btw, i just heard the pre-swansea conference being canceled… that bad, huh?

  • Colin Kaepernick

    I have to admit it now………..I am beginning to hate Arsene Wenger.

    The 6 nil drubbing to Mourinho’s Chelsea was the knife that has twisted my faith, not for AFC but AW.

    My love affair with Arsene W is over. I care not if we win the FA CUP (which I really doubt as I think the players will bottle it). I just want to be Arsene’less and if that means we are out of the Chmaps league then so be it. A fallow season or two will refresh the club.

    Ahhhhh…of all the managers to get embarrassed by, please no, not Jose. Grrrrrr.

  • John

    “Sack Wenger and appoint Martinez”….

    Apart from everything else wrong with this notion is the fact that part of Martinez’ appeal is that he seems to be an honourable man. He had many offers to leave Wigan over the years and is one year into his Everton contract.

    A few years ago some people were calling for Martin O’Neill to manager every time a club had a difficult spell. Last year, some of our “fans” were calling for David Moyes! (enough said)

  • Shard

    I figure that Per was being tongue-in-cheek, but maybe it is worth seeing if early Kick offs, particularly away from home, have some sort of a correlation with drop in form. I thought of this before Per, or anyone else said this, because I do not easily buy into conjecture about ‘lack of big-game mentality’ since it seems to me that we’ve performed well in more than a few big games, and under pressure, but that it is subsequently forgotten or deemed a non-big game, if you will.

    I also thought of it because I heard Ray Parlour say earlier how they would eat at 11.45am for a 3pm kickoff and would just start to feel slightly hungry just before the game. (He didn’t say it but apparently when you are feeling hungry you get a boost of adrenalin) Maybe it isn’t possible to attain the ideal preparedness when you need to switch timings to accomodate an early game and extra travel (Chelsea is in London though)

    I say this not to excuse the 6-0 result. No matter if there is a slight effect of an early away game, nothing excuses the way we just gave up the game after an early setback. Against both Liverpool and Chelsea.

    I haven’t looked at previous seasons, and this is no way suggests a pattern, but we’ve played 5 12.45 away games so far this season, lost the 3 (and lost spectacularly), and won at Fulham and Crystal Palace (Palace is in London too, and the team stayed in a hotel the previous night – that’s where Giroud apparently had his fling)

    Chelsea won at Hull, lost to Newcastle and drew at Spurs.

    Liverpool drew to both Newcastle and Everton.

  • JoeOng

    A manager play a very major role in a club. He is the tactician, the boss who chooses who to play and how to play. So if the manager is not good enough, it will shows through the players playing the games. Hence the question should be that is Arsene Wenger good enough to continue to lead Arsenal? Is he still current in the ever changing modern game of soccer? Take a lesson from the club Bayern Munich. We thought that with last season treble championships…yet they replaced the manager with Pep. And we thought that Pep is going to face a huge challenge to bring the club even higher. But within a season, he has transformed BM and brought his brand of playing philosophy and built up BM even better and become one of the most fear team, if not the most fear.

  • ARSENAL 13

    IDIOTS all IDIOTS….If you cant stick by your team when they are really down, you dont deserve the glow of the silverware.

    The very people crying foul now were the ones who were betting on ARSENAL finishing outside top four at the beginning of this season. They said they wanted to see ARSENAL compete and nothing else.

    We lost the game, and we missed an opportunity to close the gap. Its still only 7 points and therz 27 to play for. And we are still in contention for FA cup.


  • Shard


    Don’t forget Owen Coyle 🙂

  • Brickfields Gunners

    @ Bootoomee – Thanks for speaking for me – couldn’t have said it better ! Apparently all men are equal but some are MORE equal than others .I do understand that humour is not the forte of many ,but there IS a method to my madness !

    Being someone who goes out his way not to engage most posters here ,I somehow seem to irritate many with my humour . Not that I’m complaining !

    @ bob – If you see my avatar ,just scroll on . This is what I have been doing when I see yours ! Just thought I’d mention this since the gloves are off .

    I enjoy coming to this site to read what like minded people post .Knowing that this is a pro-Arsene Wenger site ,I just don’t see why some people even bother to come and abuse us ,when there are so many sites that would welcome you as messiahs or the chosen one !
    Trying to convert us AKBs is a waste of time. Many of us are very comfortable in our delusions !Do you really think that the those who are in charge of Arsenal read the shit you lot put on here ? Do you even think that what you think ,post is of any significance to the betterment of the club ?
    If you say yes , then its you that are delusional .

    “Lord grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”

  • Farewell then Colin, I hope you find another club to support.

  • Kenneth Widmerpool

    “a fallow season or two would refresh the club”. Shurley one the the dumbest statements every written on UA? I cant quite believe Ive even read that!
    But then BjtGooner summed up yesterday with the post at 11.18pm!
    Hey Bricks me old mate any good jokes today?
    COYG! Aha and Amen.
    Thanks to all the great people at Untold.

  • Rupert Cook

    @Tony, I can’t imagine any player who wants to come to Arsenal has any idea about us being kicked off the park. It happens of course but usually against Stoke and a few other thuggish teams but to be fair to Stoke their football has improved since Pulis went, witness their wins over Manu and Chelsea, both teams that know how to take the odd kick or two. But it seems we have players with glass ankles. Nobody doubts the technical ability of many of our players but I do think there’s something wrong with our training methods or treatment of our more injury prone players.

    Anyway the idea that players won’t come to Arsenal because they may get a kick or seven seems utterly ridiculous.

    Also you can present as many statistics as you like but anyone who has got eyes in their head can see that Giroud isn’t half the player Henry was. I think it would have been better to prize Suarez away from Liverpool than buy Ozil. We needed goals as it is plainly madness to go through a whole season with one CF, especially one as limited as Giroud.

    That’s not to say Ozil has been bad, he’s had some great performances but he’s not a fighter and we need more players that have the ability to influence matches more.

    Ozil seems to be more of a luxury player, someone who functions better when he’s surrounded by stars, he’s not a player who appears to be capable of lifting a team on his own, talented though he is.

    Still maybe next season he’ll fit that role and as we may buy two or three super quality players, Wenger’s words I believe, we may see a much more influential Ozil.

  • Mandy Dodd

    A couple of fallow seasons, a suggestion probably from someone who moans about the club not spending enough. So missing out on thirty mil the coming season, and sixty mil the next is really going to encourage wenger to go out and splash money on some quality players we need? Sounds like a view from the Lane to me

  • Kenneth Widmerpool

    Too right Mandy!Perhaps a case of the chicken fever!

  • Rupert Cook

    Even Sav from Australia is fed up!

  • Brickfields Gunners

    @ Kenneth – will try to post later on .Have to go on an errand .See you !

  • WalterBroeckx

    surely you must have known worse moments then…

  • Pete

    I find the hostility, negativity and knee-jerk comments almost (not quite!) as depressing as the Chelsea result. On this and the other thread I have come out with a long list of arguments, backed by solid numbers, as to why Wenger remains the right man for the job – while acknowledging Saturday was an unmitigated disaster. Mostly ignored.

    So that’s it from me for now. I will read Walter’s continuing injury series and look forward to tomorrow.

  • dan

    I think most if not all supporters at the start of the season would of been happy knowing we would finish in the top 4 with a chance of lifting the FA cup and have Ozil on our books.

    definitely progress in my eyes.

  • dan

    A perfect example, valid points by both groups.

  • If we could pause and reflect a while on this article in the New York Times on Pro-Soccer Players we would be less strident about Arsene Wenger’s approach to managing the team thus far. What you read in the article is today’s reality. Let us be careful what we wish for.

  • bob mac

    I have felt absolutely awful since Saturday.

    What do you think Arsene has been feeling….ecstatic!!!!!

    In the cold light of day, it is only 3pts lost, goal difference was never in the equation anyway so that does not matter.

    Why has belief and confidence disappeared, Arsenal are still in with a good chance of the double.

    What the hell is wrong with some so called fans.

  • andy1886

    Walter, I certainly have. Nice man Don Howe, terrible team though. As for the end of the 1980 season the less said the better. These certainly aren’t the worst times I’ve seen by a long way but the feeling is that having got into a great position where we have the potential to go all the way again, we don’t seem to want to make the step that would give us a real chance of making it happen. We flirt with success rather than pulling out all the stops. That’s what is frustrating.

  • andy1886

    Bob, we have a great chance to win the FA Cup – a trophy that I believe is criminally indervalued by some of the younger fans btw – but the league is an outside bet at best. Even hardened professionals suffer when they get hammered, and if it happens again it cannot do any good to their confidence, so a 1-0 loss is disappointing whereas shipping five or six really isn’t acceptable (as Arsene acknowledges).

  • Sharpehunter

    This isn’t just about one game. This is about a whole bunch of games. This season we have capitulated to Liverpool, City and Chelsea in ways which can only be referred to as total disaster. We struggled to secure points and a result against a weakened Man United, a Man United who virtually everyone else has taken points off. Imagine for one moment if we had actually got a win against this Man United team?

    But the issue here isn’t about sacking Wenger or Wenger leaving at the end of the season. For me it constantly comes back to the same thing. This team has a blasé attitude. They behave as though they are on some kind of jolly. The impression they give from the larking about and horse play on the training ground, to their social media posts to cringeworthy appearances on TV shows (I’ve seen The Ox, Walcott and Jack Wilshere on various shows having a laugh playing FIFA and doing parody sketches in the last 3 months) is one of a bunch of lads having a fucking good laugh. I think the whole Szcezny selfie thing at White Hart Lane said much more than the photo. He made some serious errors in that game and the only reason we got the result was because of other peoples ability to mop up his mistakes.

    This team needs to get serious. They need to stop fucking about. They need to get their heads down and get some work done. They need to stop brushing off failures and talking to the press and making banal fucking comments about what they think.

    The results 5-1 against Liverpool, 6-3 against City and 6-0 by Chelsea are not laughing matters, they are not to be brushed under the carpet. If Arsene is the man to take us forward he needs to address the issues, he has to identify his own tactical errors and they as a squad and the coaching staff need to prepare better and collectively acknowledge that they are not performing to the level expected.

    Talking about Wenger Outs and Arsene Knows Best and all that bollocks is pointless and misses the point.

  • Reading reactions after the painful defeat, one would be for forgiven for thinking that Arsenal were the favourites to win the league this season but we are bottling it big time. Losing 6-0 to any team at any level and on any occasion is painful. VERY PAINFUL. Losing by that margin to a team led by Mourhino is unbearable for me personally. But in the context of a league campaign, it is the same as losing 1-0 or 5-4. We need to get less emotional about results like this and remember that whatever humiliation we might be feeling as supporters, the manager and players are feeling much worse.

    How can Arsene get that result from his team on his 1000th game and we think that we need to beat him up further? What can you possibly say to the man that can be more painful than that result? Please just give it a rest already.

    We are facing Swansea tomorrow for another 3 pointer. I am looking forward to that game as well as 7 others in the league and possibly 2 more in the FA cup this season. This season, by the way, is Arsenal’s best in 109 years by win ratio. FACT. I am not going to let the margin of our results away to Man City, Liverpool and Chelsea turn a good season to a disaster. Those who want to base their evaluation of the season on these are free to do so but can they please leave the rest of us (at Untold Arsenal especially) in peace?

  • andy1886

    Boo – current win ratio is 63.33% (19 out of 30). Win ratio in 01/02 was 68.42% (26 out of 38). So not even the best of Arsene’s reign. Sorry, but when someone types ‘FACT’ in caps I feel obliged to check it out. It is worrying though that on such a big day for Arsene his team can let him and us down so badly.

  • andy bishop

    The big game is not tuesday night but against Wigan who will fly at us just as they did at Man City. Are we (Arsene) prepared for this??

  • andy1886,

    Reading comprehension is not your forte but this is from in conjunction with Opta:

    “The Gunners have won 30 of the 45 games so far in 2013/14 – for a 66.7 per cent win rate – better than each of the previous 109 seasons since Arsenal became a league side in 1893.”

    If you assumed (in your rush to post rash comments as you have been doing for the past 48 hours) that I was only talking about the league, that is your problem but my statement followed my list of all the games we have to play this season.

    I know you’ve been having a orgy of negative post. Go and ahead and knock yourself out, your Christmas has come early but read well before querying other people’s facts.

  • andy1886

    Boo, thanks for the explanation – no need to be rude I’m sure that you can make your point without that. Rash comment? Have you actually read them? I want, as many do, the best for the club, not a particular individual however well he has served us in the past. I believe that a change at the top could be a positive thing, you might view it differently, that’s your opinion not a cast iron fact. I’m all for a rational debate, if you don’t agree I wont call you names or question your intelligence, I’m sure that we are both old enough to be above that. Instead of insults why not explain why you think next season will be different (i.e. better) than the last five or six? I cannot see where the change is going to come from, perhaps you have seen something that I have not, if so please explain it to me.

  • andy1886,

    Please scroll up and read what this site is all about. Sorry pal but I’m not interested in ANY debate on replacing Arsene Wenger because his team has lost another game in the season when he has already won more games on average than any other time in our history since we became a league side.

    Shit happens in football. In our most glorious season – the Unbeaten Season – we still failed to win the League cup, the FA cup and the Champions league. The losses resulting in being knocked out of those competitions weren’t glorious but none asked for AW to be replaced then. So why now when we are on the verge of breaking our ill luck in the trophy department.

    It was a painful loss on Saturday but I am more pained by folks like you who wouldn’t shut up about it. I have never seen you comment here this much when we produce good results so why the frenetic postings now? My advice: leave your computer for a while, watch a nice movie or read a book you love and enjoy, you’ll come back feeling much better 🙂

  • andy1886

    Well, if you’ve a closed mind so be it. This is an Arsenal site I believe, not an Arsene site. If you want him to stay forever that’s your entitlement. If you read my posts you’ll see they hardly mention Saturday’s game at all, so it’s hardly that I ‘wont shut up about it’ is it? My opinions are based on several years where I see the same old mistakes being repeated, and the concept that change is sometimes necessary however uncomfortable that might be. Trust me, when we win the cup semi or beat City I will be on here celebrating with the best of them. Unfortunately leaving the computer isn’t an option – it’s called ‘working (cough)from home’.

  • andy1886,


    So I’ll be looking forward to similar number of comments from you after our next victory then.

    BTW, this is not an Arsenal site as it is not affiliated to Arsenal in any official capacity. It is a strongly pro-Wenger Arsenal fans’ site. If by some bizarre occurrence Tony Attwood becomes a Spurs fan tomorrow (forgive me Tony, I am only making a point), then the site might become Untold Tottenham.

  • Kos

    Mandy the problem with this season is that it should have represented progress. To some extent, falling away in the title race in March satisfies that yet an uneasy feeling about next season surfaces. Moyes managerial ability without money matched his sallow complexion; Moyes with money and having survived the first post-Fergie season might well be a different proposition. It is supposition of course but not without foundation. 

  • Mahdain

    To lighten things up a bit, why dont you find out if you are a better ref than Andre Marriner at

  • andy1886

    I think even the suggestion is enough to get a ban…. 😉

  • mark

    What is the battle cry before the game? Surely you learn the lessons of the previous maulings? Keep it tight first 20. Don’t give anything away. Instead we are cut apart, playing a high line and the game is over before it’s begun. Even at 2-0 down its not’s irretreivable if we can stay in it until the last 15. Still we play the same way. Fans short changed again and Bully must be doing his nut on Fans tv. How many more false dawns. Thanks for the memories but please go. I used to look forward to Spring. Fellow Gooners, I feel your pain

  • MoW

    4th place, the FA Cup and a timely and graceful exit by Wenger afterwards. That would be a beautiful season.

  • Macduff

    Mark- the people on Arsenal fan TV, the majority of whom have grown up in NL, have an actual genuine connection to the club, and spend their time and money going to matches, have no right to complain the way they do about feeling humiliated. No right to complain about the same predictable mistakes over and over again. No right to debate or have an opinion whether the right man is in charge. No right to be critical of anything at the club. That is not supporting Arsenal the way Untold likes us to support.

  • Kos

    Losing 6-3 at City could have been a one-off. Getting destroyed 5-1 at Anfield could have been a rare bad day but to follow both those games up with this abomination at Chelsea indicates an inherent problem when it comes to motivation against the so-called top tier teams. A league one side going to Stamford would be disappointed losing like this so how we continue to find ourselves in this position is beyond baffling. Of course, every team gets a tonking now and again. However, to suffer so many in such a short space of time simply isn’t good enough for anybody with aspirations of achieving something tangible. It certainly isn’t about ability. The team wouldn’t be where they are if they weren’t “good” at what they do, but a failure to even put up a fight suggests weakness, both tactically and mentally. When we go up agains these sides, all too often we have no idea how to approach them nor is there seemingly any belief among the players to deal with the challenge of facing anyone remotely decent. This leads to the kind of spectacular collapse that is starting to become their trademark. 

  • andy bishop

    It would be great to win the FA Cup. I hope Arsene is ready for the predictable Wigan early onslaught. It seems we are a little vulnerable to that approach early on in a game. There is no justification in being rude to a reasoned argument not all are AAA or trolls.

  • Kos

    Whatever your stance on the manager, it’s impossible not to question him and how he prepares the team. In this particular game, it almost felt as though they were sent out to play in a way that simply encouraged the opposition to do with them as they pleased. Much has been made all week of the fact this was the manager’s 1000th game in charge and if nothing else, you might have expected him to rouse his players to do him proud. Instead, it felt more like with all the back-slapping and congratulations, he forgot there was actually a football match to play.The adulation directed to towards the manager this week has been wonderful. The memories of previous success and a reminder of his impact in the club since taking over have allowed people to realise how important Arsene Wenger has been for Arsenal football club. However, all this seems to have blinded people to the problems of the present. Arsene Wenger is in no way the same manager he was a decade and a half ago. The success he brought the club is appreciated but that doesn’t at all mean he is still capable of the things he achieved years ago. The proof is very much in the pudding and when you get turned over 6-0 by a team who you are supposed to be challenging at the top, the manager’s obvious limitations are laid bare for all to see. As new challenges have presented themselves, he has shown himself barely capable of taking them on. Instead, there is excuse making and a clear misguided hanging on to the past, wrongly longing for it to impact the present. Going into this game, the manager had never beaten Jose Mourinho and afterwards, never looked further away from doing so. Of course, the usual talk of not being able to compete with their spending/squad/whatever will be levied but when you think that they are coming off the back of a defeat at Villa & the likes of West Brom have given them more of a scare at their place this season, Arsenal’s pathetic surrender becomes even more inexcusable. Painting Chelsea as some sort of unbeatable, unstoppable force falls foul in the face some of their results against teams far further down the pecking order than Arsenal. This was the first time they had scored 6 goals against anybody this year and also the first time in two spells under Mourinho – statistic that unfortunately says more about us than it does about them. Results like this should be a real eye-opener where everyone involved, including the man himself, ought to question whether or not he is the right person to take the club forward at this point. If nothing else, the possibility of replacements should at least be considered because results like this, as frequently as they are starting to occur, are unacceptable. We cannot pretend that everything is rosey in the Wenger garden forever lest we allow ourselves to sleepwalk into mediocrity. The manager is getting older which means he is closer and closer to one day retiring or at the risk of sounding morbid, dying. One way or another, he will eventually need to be replaced and it would be extremely naive to not even start preparing for that.In any other line of work, no matter what have achieved, you are replaced if you no longer look up to the job. You will also be rightly reprimanded for acts of gross incompetence. Repeated acts will lead to your dismissal. How many more times must Arsenal be humiliated before the manager is accountable?

  • Brickfields Gunners

    Kenneth ,I think you’d like this !

    The Barking Dog

    A blonde and her husband are lying in bed listening to the next door neighbor’s dog. It has been in the backyard barking for hours and hours. The blonde jumps up out of bed and says, “I’ve had enough of this”. She goes downstairs.

    The blonde finally comes back up to bed And her husband says “The dog is still barking, What have you been doing?”

    The blonde says, “I put the dog in our backyard, let’s see how THEY like it!

  • Brickfields Gunners

    Are these metaphors for the AAAA ?

    If your dog is barking at the back door and your wife is yelling at the front door, who do you let in first?
    The Dog of course … at least he’ll shut up after you let him in!

    Why do men chase women they have no intention of marrying?
    For the same reason dogs chase cars they have no intention of driving.

    How do you tell the difference between a violinist and a dog?
    The dog knows when to stop scratching.

  • bjtgooner


    Well spotted.


    Can we have “kos” banned – one less AAA stirrer would be welcome.

  • labanoob

    this web site is unbelievable haha
    you guys keep fooling yourselves every time we loss to a big team
    that it was something else false but not = Wenger’s

    let see ok? from now on we might beat some shit team again
    but in the end if he cannot win FA cup again this year….we can agree that
    the man need to go? ok boy?

    i mean how on earth cant we win it with only us among lower team in competition now?

    and epl this year with man utd became a laughing stock now we cant even take opportunities by buying more established stars to push like other teams
    it is so shame on that and btw we cannot even beat man utd??????

    thinks about it guys open your eyes please

  • Brickfields Gunners

    The hard core AKBs ignoring the hopelessly lost AAAA pussy’s goading. Well done guys .Just get him later when no one is looking !

  • bjtgooner

    @Brickfields @ 3.25pm

    I really really like that one! The AKBs are a well disciplined lot!

  • Pete


    Don’t let the facts get in the way of a good argument, eh?

  • Brickfields Gunners

    This’ll Make You Laugh

    A dog goes into a grocer’s with a basket in its mouth. In the basket is a shopping list and a purse. The grocer reads the list, puts the goods requested into the basket, takes some money from the purse and puts back the change. The dog then runs off home.
    This happens every week for months and the grocer becomes extremely impressed by the animal’s intelligence and its dedication to its task.
    One day he decides to follow the animal home and see if its owner would be willing to sell it. The dog eventually leads the grocer to a run-down house where it puts the basket on the doorstep and rings the door-bell with its nose.
    After a few seconds an old woman opens the door and starts hitting the dog with a stick.
    ‘Stop!’ shouts the grocer. ‘What are you doing? That’s the most intelligent dog I’ve ever seen in my life.’ ‘Intelligent, my arse!’ shouts the old woman. ‘That’s the third time this week he’s forgotten his keys.’

  • Brickfields Gunners

    The dog was sitting next to his owner at the movies. He was barking excitedly and wagging his tail every time the hero was on screen, and growling ferociously every time the villain appeared.
    The man sitting behind them, totally fascinated by what he sees, taps the owner on the shoulder and says, “Excuse me, that dog is extraordinary. I’ve never seen anything like it before.”
    “I’m surprised too,” says the dog’s owner. “He hated the book.”

  • Brickfields Gunners

    Help Wanted

    A local business was looking for office help. They put a sign in the window, that read:

    “HELP WANTED. Must be able to type, must be good with a computer and must be bilingual. We are an Equal Opportunity Employer.”

    A short time afterwards, a dog trotted up to the window, saw the sign and went inside. He looked at the receptionist and wagged his tail, then walked over to the sign, looked at it and whined.

    Getting the idea, the receptionist got the office manager. The office manager looked at the dog and was surprised, to say the least. However, the dog looked determined, so he lead him into the office. Inside, the dog jumped up on the chair and stared at the manager.

    The manager said, “I can’t hire you. The sign says you have to be able to type.” The dog jumped down, went to the typewriter and proceeded to type out a perfect letter. He took out the page and trotted over to the manager and gave it to him, then jumped back on the chair. The manager was stunned, but then told the dog, “The sign says you have to be good with a computer.”

    The dog jumped down again and went to the computer. The dog proceeded to demonstrate his expertise with various programs and produced a sample spreadsheet and database and presented them to the manager. By this time the manager was totally dumb-founded! He looked at the dog and said, “I realize that you are a very intelligent dog and have some interesting abilities. However, I still can’t give you the job.”

    The dog jumped down and went to a copy of the sign and put his paw on the sentences that told about being an Equal Opportunity Employer. The manager said, “Yes, but the sign also says that you have to be bilingual.”

    The dog looked at him straight in the face and said, “Meow.”

  • Kenneth Widmerpool

    Good stuff Bricks!You always have me cracking up with laughter!
    Thanks mate!
    COYG! Aha and Amen.

  • Brickfields Gunners

    Goodnight ,guys !

    How did the football pitch end up as triangle?
    Somebody took a corner!

    Q: What’s the difference between an AAAA and an airplane model kit?
    A: One’s a glueless kit and the other’s a clueless git!

    An AAAA is so stupid that he thinks twice before saying nothing.( If only !)

  • Mandy Dodd

    Bentalob @3.23 or whatever your name is…yes we should win the FA cup, but remember who our semi final opponents have beaten in the competition recently, twice. There are no guarantees in football…even with vast spending beyond a clubs means like Wigans recent victims. When Wenger goes, it will be of his choosing and his alone

  • highamsparkgunner

    Mike Dean on Sunday. Fucking there not a rule to how many times you have the same ref in one season. Also nice to see Andre mariner getting a game and not being dropped for his calamitous error against Gibbs

  • Mahdain

    I can answer whats next.. Probert for Swansea and Mike effin Dean for City. Didnt we just have Dean vs spuds? Then how come we get him again after two matches? Has any other team experienced this? and they expect us to believe these appointments are random? Yeah right. Bravo to you Riley you have outdone yourself once again

  • Mahdain

    To any of our own resident refs here, isnt there any rule about when a ref can referee a team`s match after just refereeing them? Seems to me like a first time a team gets the same referee after two games

  • bjtgooner

    I thought there was supposed to be a 30 day interval between refereeing the same team – but lets see what Walter states.

  • sperez

    I lost faith in Wenger as a manager four years ago. However, a part of me really feels sorry for the man now. Because Wenger illustrates what power, money, and delusion can do to someone.
    For most here, it’ll be hard to see Wenger goes. It’s understandable after all these years. However, you must admit if he stays, things will be more complicated. There’s a high probability Wenger can cause further damage to his legacy. Does he really need this? The embarrassment, the mockery? Mourinho???
    Won’t it be ironic if Mourinho is the guy to end Wenger’s reign at the club?
    Change is necessary and Wenger and the board (also responsible for this mess) should realise this.
    Wenger still has the chance to restore some pride at Arsenal with the FA Cup and leave. But if he uses the trophy as a reason to stay…Well, I really think he won’t last the new three-year contract.
    More humiliating/embarrassing games will happen for sure.

  • Tom

    Having made the trip to London to watch the game in person and having just got back Stateside , I have some thoughts some of you might find interesting.

    First of all , I don’t think Wenger had no plan or players were unprepared as it was suggested by many. If anything , from where I was sitting( or standing rather, especially after Chelsea scored) which was some fifteen rows above Arsenal bench( thx Gold Coast Tickets), it looked like Wenger wanted to catch Chelsea with an early goal and he would’ve , had Giroud taken his chance and hit the ball with venom.

    What was really interesting to see on that play was our left back who started the play by sidestepping Schurrle on the left flank , drive up the pitch , pass the ball to Rosicky who played Giroud on goal while Gibbs continued on pressing until he found himself almost all the way by Chelsea’s left corner flag. This uncharacteristic agression was to be proven costly soon after , when first Ox and minutes later Cazorla lost the ball in the middle of the park because of lack of passing options . Especially in Cazorla’s case when after Gibbs’s lay off , Cazorla found himself surrounded by three Chelsea players and with Gibbs already up the field , no one to pass the ball to .

    Why was Wenger’s plan against Chelsea away so Gung-Ho when at the Ems he was so conservative? Who knows , but he did have a plan.

    So why didn’t his plan work? Simply put Arsenal don’t have the players to execute this type of a plan. Without a strong and pacey holding midfielder to protect the back four and in most cases it’s the back two because our fullbacks are so far up the pitch they aren’t even in the frame when the ball hits the back of our net, Arsenal can’t compete head to head with the best PL clubs. Arteta is too slow and not strong enough on the ball to play that role and he struggles against players like Matic and even Oscar. He goes to ground too often when under pressure hoping for the whistle. That strategy is always risky and it proved so against Chelsea. He went to ground after Oscar’s challenge and he got the foul but minutes later he didn’t get it against Matic who took the ball off him and passed to Shurrle for Chelsea’s second.
    So why not start Flamini? Well because he’s not much faster than Arteta and he lack’s Arteta’s ability to read the game and he tries to compensate his lack of physical presence with over the top agression which is why Wenger doesn’t trust him.

    So what else went wrong? Other than another shambolic refereeing performance by the PGMOL ‘s ‘finest ‘ who wrongfully awarded a red card to a wrong player , not much really.
    Perhaps only another sub par performance by our social media happy goal keeper who didn’t exactly cover himself in glory and should’ve done better with all six goals.
    On both Eto’s and Schurrle’s goal Szczesny shifted his body ever so slightly to his left before diving right and just missing the ball by a finger tip on Eto’s shot and not even diving at all at Shurrle’s.
    His penalty saving style with the shoulder shimmy and always diving the opposite way , is ineffectual and amateur like and makes one wander why Arsenal goal keeping coaches don’t make him stop doing it.
    His attempt at saving Oscar’s goal was weak to say the least.

    So what next for Arsenal?
    Well , the league was lost with Walcott , Wilshere , Ramsey and Ozil ‘s injuries so no great drama there. Anyone who thought we could do it without those four was kidding himself. The fourth place and the FA cup are a must and without both Wenger might decide not to resign . Failing to win the FA cup might prove impossible for him to continue on.

    If he does stay , he needs to decide what type of football Arsenal need to play and go about getting the players who can help get it done.
    The two Chelsea players who took us apart on Saturday were Matic and Shurrle with a combined price tag of about £ 40 M , so well within our means , which proves that you don’t have to spend £100M to improve the squad.
    A side note – Chelsea supporters were very gracious and kind and didn’t rub it in too much during the the game but perhaps that was only the case because they were hitting on my wife 🙂

  • Macduff

    Wow Tom. Although I wouldn’t necessarily agree with you regarding Szczesny and the first two goals, your assessment is so balanced and based in reality I thought that I had logged on to the wrong site

  • Tom

    @ Macduff
    Maybe that’s why I was told many times by some on here to go away and not come back 🙂

  • Macduff,

    Shorter version: somebody finally posted what you’ve been desperate to read.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Thanks Tom, always look to view the sober analysis of the likes or yourself, Pete as well as the authors and a few others on this site. Can see what you are saying, a plan was there but badly executed and went a bit wrong. I just cannot see wenger going, nor should he, unless he makes that choice, an FA cup win and top four would be progress of sorts and get a monkey off his back. May could look a lot different than today But with him staying, he certainly has work to do this summer, there are still issues that need addressing, squad depth and another striker for starters. Agree with you on the missing players, catastrophic for a title challenge. With a World Cup, the injuries might not abate next season either, we must be prepared , unless wenger finds and deals with a root cause of the injuries, or the pgmol stamp down on rotational fouling against us, which ain’t going to happen. The nuclear scenario is losing top four and the FA cup, but I trust wenger and the team to avoid that one

  • Macduff

    Bootoomee- . I agree with you fully, I have been desperate to read something balanced and different than the garbage that you and pontificate over. Your alpha male bullshit does not work online pal

  • andy1886

    Mandy, I think you misread Tom’s assessment, it wasn’t a plan that was badly executed, we didn’t have the players that were actually able to execute it (quote below);

    “So why didn’t his plan work? Simply put Arsenal don’t have the players to execute this type of a plan.”

    Which makes it a badly conceived plan.

    The puzzling thing is that we tried it before at Liverpool and look what happened, so it shouldn’t have been a surprise. Let’s hope that this is the last time we see such an approach with the current personnel.

  • TommieGun

    @ Tom – great post mate. Cheers.

  • pete

    Just read this superb article on the BBC website on fan psychology. It was not about Arsenal but fascinating all the same. Love the comment: “Better to be stoical little Charlie Bucket than spoilt little Veruca Salt” [from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory].

  • Mandy Dodd

    Took the point about the players Andy, was referring more to the gung-ho bit. Yes, it did not work at Liverpool either, if indeed the plan was identical. Not helped at Liverpool by the fact that the first goal was offside, and Bac was held at the second, but yes, it was sham loci nonetheless. An early goal of it could have happened would not be the worst plan in the world….but it did not , life goes on. We are down to the bare bones a bit with the squad, in some ways, the Chelsea game was a bit of a perfect storm. But yes, next year, I would hope for better squad depth, at least in players wenger will use, less injuries and as Pete was saying, a more cautious approach against the big boys away. I would just tell them to imagine they are playing in Germany next time.

  • WalterBroeckx

    Indeed a very interesting link Pete.
    An article some who came here since a few days should read.

  • bob

    The “full flow” remarks you reject were my quoting nicky’s comments (3/23 at 12:37). So your comments are best re-directed at his point of view, not mine.

  • andy1886

    Maybe we could actually play like Germany next time! Disciplined, well drilled, robust, efficient, you know, all the stereotypes. We definitely need more strength and pace though, Vieira and Petit would be my model.

  • bob

    Brickfields Gunners,
    Not that we’ve ever before replied to each other, so nothing gained or lost. Our styles just exhaust one another. Good luck to our Arsenal.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Not easy to get Andy, think we tried to get Lars Bender, but nothing was happening for whatever reason. Not sure he is exactly like those two, but perhaps something approaching that type of player

  • Tom

    Mandy Dodd
    Thanks and likewise . There are many on here who’s posts are always very interesting even if holding an opposing view. Your’s and Pete’s definitely do stand out.

  • Tom

    Thank you my friend

  • Persian Gunner

    Despite all these comments, critising Arsene for bad tactics, I believe Wenger tried his best squad at Stamford bridge
    He used Lukas to support Giroud up front as a second striker, used Rosicky, who was outstanding against Tottenham in both attack and defence, and at last he chose Ox as a box to box battler beside the game organizer and deciplined Arteta, who is of course not physical
    So we had some other problems which is noticed several times here by the fellow gunners, for sure mental preparation for this battle was really poor
    It was not a big surprise, as I look back now, to be destroyed by 2 early goals after all those selfies and celebrations at white hart lane, our players was so proud of themselves which made them really ignorant to the fact that are playing against Chelsea

  • Persian Gunner

    I have to agree with bob
    On his comments about transfer opportunities we threw away
    I always support Arsene Wenger for his approach to the market, but watching Giroud, completely out of form and with no pace and as usual showing that early frustratied face in big games, I may say we needed to address this much sooner this season

  • Rupert Cook

    @Tom, very good analysis. I think that seemed to be the plan, punish Chelsea early and then play a little more cautiously. It’s a little bit worrying though if you think Wenger doesn’t trust Flamini in these sort of games because I thought that’s why he took him back.

    I also feel Wenger had a point to prove to Mourinho about how to play football and what better time than your 1000th game. Unfortunately you need the calibre of players we had ten years ago to do that. Whether we like it or not Mourinho is very good at outwitting Wenger because AW adopts pretty much the same approach to every game. But Wenger can play the master tactician if he wants, witness the win over Dortmund; he just doesn’t like to do it in the EPL.

    @Bootoome, your win ratio maybe correct but so what? It’s like saying we were top of the league for 18 weeks; unless you’re top at the end of May, so what? A good analogy is a tennis game, let’s say Wenger vs Mourinho, with Wenger’s score first, 6-0, 6-0, 4-6, 4-6, 4-6.
    Wenger has won more games 24 to Mourinho’s 18 but Mourinho has won the match. (Yes it would be more appropriate that Mourinho had the first set 6-0 but I thought that might be a sore point).

    Anyway let’s hope we sinks the Swans tonight.

  • Tom

    Rupert Cook
    Thanks. It was really interesting to see Wenger talk before the game about how this was the most important game of the season and his players needed to step up ,instead of downplaying it and trying to take the pressure off them and put it on Chelsea.

    We can all laugh at and ridicule Mourinho for his “little horses” and “Chelsea are not title contenders” comments but they certainly don’t make it more difficult for his players to perform,do they?

    Also , playing Ox who’s more of a winger , in a holding mid role next to Arteta proved too much an ask for the occasion .
    Arteta and Ox together have all the attributes of a perfect holding midfielder but not individually .
    Almost every aspect of Chamberlain’s game that makes him so dangerous and exciting going forward is less desirable in a holding midfielder ,especially being enterprising and taking chances.