What question should I ask Mr Wenger on saturday?

I think, before I run the risk of getting lynched when the truth comes out, I ought to explain.

Arsenal FC will put out a DVD for members at the start of next season.  I am not sure who it goes to, but I know Gold Members get it – maybe silver and red too, I am not sure.

On the DVD there is a plan to have some fans talking, and putting questions, some of which might just be  put to Arsène Wenger at a later date in a studio.   I have been invited along to the recording of a fans discussion and question time which is going to happen this saturday, before the Man City game.

In fact even the notion that I was specifically invited because of my stunning and overwhelming work on Untold is a little wide of the mark.  Red Action asked its regular supporters if they wanted to be part of the action, and I offered, so they said yes ok.  (Oh and I had to know The Lord Wenger’s birthday, just to prove it was me.  I must have got it right, too).

Now I know from things like this in the past that all does not necessarily work as one might imagine and in my enthusiasm I might have got it all wrong.  But some filming of some sort is going to happen at the Ems on saturday, and I really ought to be hyped up with questions as well as my opinions.

So what should I ask, on the basis that maybe someone will want me to ask a question?

I would like to know if Arsène (I feel that I am to question him even at a distance I can use his first name, rather than calling him His Lordship) is aware of the fact that there is a very large solid core of support for him and his approach.  That while there are some malcontents there is this huge movement that recognises what he has done for our club, and wants him to stay for as long as possible.

That’s one – its a bit rhetorical, but it would be good to know if he is aware of the debate going on beyond the club.

What else?

Going on from that, does he read or listen to other people’s opinions or does he find them unhelpful?

And there is one rather quirky one: the year before the Unbeaten Season he announced we could go through a whole season unbeaten.  Then, quite famously, we lost the next game – but went through the whole of the next season unbeaten.

This season he said we could win a trophy – and sadly that is not happening.  But does he now feel it was just one season early.

And my last suggestion: does he have any explanation for the incredible run of injuries over three years.  And is he now planning on the basis that it will continue?

So there’s my starters.  Any ideas?  Let me just add that there’s no point is suggesting that I say something like, “why on earth don’t you buy a better goalkeeper?” because it is not going to get through – this is a club production after all.   So there’s no point in putting forward negative points about certain players.  But anything on the positive side (I am representing Untold Arsenal after all) would be welcome and I’ll do my best.

I’ll write up a piece to let you know what happens.



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66 Replies to “What question should I ask Mr Wenger on saturday?”

  1. Arsene Wenger’s contribution to English football should not be under estimated. I believe Arsene Wenger played a huge role in making the English League the best in the world, but sadly he doesn’t get enough recognition for this. I remember English football before Wenger, the diet, the drinking and the gambling culture, and look at it now. Arsene Wenger’s work should never be forgotten.

    Arsene Wenger is a winner, a legend, a truly great manager and we need to support him together. If Arsene Wenger finishes his career with us then the Emirates Stadium should be called The Arsene Wenger Stadium.

    In Arsene We Trust!!!

  2. Interesting, RVP. Very interesting.

    Tony, you could ask him: ‘How close to completion he thinks the Club’s Youth Development Project is? Is there any particular area he intends to focus on next season?’

  3. Ask him what he thinks is the gap between us and Barcelona….why are they better as it would seem they are.

  4. You could ask him if there are more plans for the emirates, i heard there is another development for building on the way…are they planning any other huge things like this for the club

  5. or..what was the hardest (or most worrying) point he has had in his career at arsenal

  6. The last in December it was made public that Arsenal had dramatically reduced its debts. i would like to know when Mr Wenger’s target is for the club to be debt free as i am sure this is the reason for him being a little shy in the transfer market.

  7. I’ve been reading your articles for a while (very good stuff by the way) and I believe you are more than capable of finding the right questions to ask him. But please just remind him that there are more of us who support him than not and that his work is appreciated. I’m sure he knows it but he is still human and everyone needs a pat on the back every now and then, even his lordship

  8. Or you can ask, will the wage structure ever be restructered once the debt is paid off in order to buy (if we wanted to buy of course) a player that would probably demand a high wage, the likes of David Villa, Torres, Messi etc, and if the debt was cleared would Arsenal ever consider bidding on such players or do they view big spends like £30-40m+ no matter our financial power as a waste of resources to be spent on one player

  9. What about: Are there Fabianski twins, Lucas and Lucasz? One is gifted, performs heroicss in training, and is rated as a great keeper. The other performs regularly at the circus. Have the Arsenal staff got them mixed up?

  10. My take here is, you should ask him every necessary questions. We fans deserve to know what are his plans for the next season. the area is going to strengthen. We need a better goal keeper not Joe Hart. We need a well experienced and hard tackler in the midfield. A better striker. Well, of all, players that go all the seasons with injuries and you should ask him why there’s so much of long time injuries to our players in the last 3yrs? Does he think the medical crew are doing it all? We need answers…

  11. I have no idea if this is a good enough question or whether it will fit in with a club dvd or whatever but here is the one thing I would ask Wenger, so bear with me-

    If you look at our very good first team, you’ll see many players under 25, especially in midfield (Theo 21, Deni 22, Nasri 22, Cesc 22, Song 22, Diaby 24 iirc, not to mention the likes of Eastmond, Merida, Vela and Ramsey on the edge) and with added revenue, we are starting to see more experienced signings like Arshavin. This can only be of the benefit to the club in the short term but how do the astounding youths of the future fit in? Again taking the midfield for example, we have Lansbury, Wilshere, JET, Eastmond, Ramsey, Aneke, Barazite and others all talked about as special u20 talents and some are proving so this season that they have limitless potential. But when our first team is the same, but with added experience, and almost full, where does that leave them? What chances do they have? Cesc was famously able to get his foot in the door as Vieira’s replacement, and the same goes for say Denilson for Gilberto, and Bendtner for Adebayor. But the current first team players are exceptional internationals with limitless potential and nowhere near their peak, and all on long term contracts, they aren’t in a position to leave like Gilberto was. So is there a long term strategy for the talented London boys?

  12. I would ask the boss about his inspiration for the Emirates stadium. What inspired him to come to Arsenal, play the game as it should at Highbury and then take Arsenal to the next level (the Emirates). What was his inspiration and apart from the financial, any other challenges he faces in migrating the mighty Arsenal from our spiritual home to a brand spanking new home.

  13. I have seen a clip of the boss spectating a darts match between RVP and Clichy. I would ask the boss if there are any other extra curricular activities the boss participates with the team in. Like, maybe a foot race between Theo and Clichy or an arm wrestle between Song and Vermaelen or may be a Sol v Gallas stare down comp (who can give the meanest stare down).

  14. you could ask him when are we gonna have the team he is waiting for, so we can actually start watching our club play again.
    and the unbeaten season, I know what you all would say< great job le boss ohoooooooooooooooohhh. balls, any manger could see it happening, if you've got thierry, pires, reyes…………. you woul easily rape the all the teams.
    i remember watching us loosing at the beginning of the game while people around me taking the piss, but i looked back at them with a smile thinking ohhh you guys just wait and see, you will be raped.

    but now we are know to score in the last 20 mins. and believe me it not cause it took us that much time to get our game together or this and that, its simply cause our players are faster, and with better stamina. however the unbeaten played the best football ever, even 2007/08 was one amazing football season, cause they had the blessing from those players who left, and year after year more and more go and we end up with a complete idiot team full of denilson. that my friend is the proof its not wenger, it was the untouchables.
    so you could ask him when are you leaving this club
    p.s. fuck off

  15. If I had to ask just one question what would it be?

    I would ask this… Prior to the invincibles you were chastized for predicting a team could go undefeated for a whole season in the EPL..
    As you know this was done…

    What is your next big prediction in regards to Arsenal?

  16. If I could ask him one question, I would ask him about how next season’s formation will be compared to this year’s 4-3-3. The fact that we are inevitably getting a centre forward might convince Wenger to go back to the old 4-4-2, but with the 4-3-3 Fabregas has been a revelation.

  17. Haha! You`re quite right c1gooner it`s the worst place in the world to hide. Anyway I`m sure he`ll resolve our problems and stay with us for quite some time to come. I`d hate to see him finish up on Christmas Island.

  18. i dont think wenger is capable of coaching Arsenal anymore
    He should retire if not they will loose a lot of fance.

  19. The boss wouldn`t have much choice on Christmas Island, he`d eat what he`s given.

  20. Most of us talk about players being strong physically which obviously comes through various drills, gym, practice games and so on…but many a times we forget that body and mind perform in sync…players should also have cool, calm and composed mindset so that they can counter stress effectively under tough situations….

    so the question is; do arsenal players practice “Yoga” which might help them sharpen their concentration, focus and discipline?

  21. I think the one thing that divides the supporters is not the run of results or years without a trophy.
    I think the question is we do NOT understand whats driving Arsenal currently.
    Is it the debt from the stadium or Mr Wengers youth project.
    I would never expect an answer to that question it wouldnt make sense for the club to be honest.
    It is probably what splits supporters and confuses everyone.
    If its the board no cash from the stadium we will all feel thats reasonable you can’t have your cake and eat it.
    If its a stuborn refusual to push on with a youth project that appears flawed to many supporters and a refusal to spend a little more to strengthen the squad to show Mr Wengers right that would annoy people.
    I dont think things are that bad in general but most supporters today are intelligent and can read between lines the club sometimes do not recognise that and sell us any old story.

  22. I would like to ask him what his biggest regrete is, in a footballing sence; for example letting a player go too early, or passing up on a player. or it could be a coaching decission like not playing certain players in a really important game or choosing the wrong game plan.

    I find you can learn a lot about someone from their regrets in life.

  23. Hey Tony..

    I have been thinking this for all the time and you have also pointed it out. As we are fastly reducing our debt and we might be able to pay back the whole loan in few years and start making huge profits too. So after a certain time we would have regular flow of cash and regular flow of players too.

    Is there a chance that we build another stadium (probably smaller) or club where all our players can compete as a team and play competitive football (not like reserve league). This way we do not need to loan our players to various clubs and the team bonding would be even stronger.

    And instead of changing our stadium’s name to Arsene Wenger stadium we can name the new club as The Arsene club.

  24. Ask him how much of that ascribed to AA in the english media is actually true??!! In particular, are his wife’s skills at the wheel contradictory to the opinions expressed by his Russian maestro?

    Is it just statistical oddity, or do Arsenal now need a 15 minute warm-up in each half to score goals??!! [They score far, far more goals between minutes 31 – 45 and 76-90 than at other times…]

    Will he be bringing out a model of Arsene holding his arms up in the air for sale to all opposing fans – it might generate enough income for a new player in summer 2011??

    Is the Emirates stadium designed in a way that could, if at some time desired, expand capacity to, say, 75,000?

    Has he decided where his daughter’s secondary education will be completed?

  25. Tony,
    can you please ask him the plan for next season as this season we were so close of winning the title (i know it’s not over yet and we still have hope)and is he going to put jack wilshere into the first team after a good spell to bolton?

    @c1gooner, i think tassie have better seafood than xmas island..=)

  26. Ask Arsene Wenger why He does not balance the team in terms of quality when buying players, He prefers buying attacking minded midfielders and not proven defensive midfielders like Essien, world class goalkeeper playing for their national team e.g Vandersa,chech, shay etc, natural wingers like malouda with solid and combative defenders.I believe if he can balance the team Arsenal will win trophies by playing the same entertaining football like Bacerlona.

  27. Ask him why we have not been defensively solid for about 3 years and what he intends to do to address it?

  28. Why is EDUARDO always preferred more than VELA, who is actually better than him in this season? why is Vela always given very less minutes in which he can do very less instead of giving him a start? why vela did not even start a single match?
    Given the fact that Carlos Vela has been shining very well in the MEXICAN national side.
    Does MR.WENGER give more priority to senior players? I dont feel that way in the case of MERIDA being preffered better than VELA.
    it is also the same case with VITO MANNONE. Instead of searching for a new doalkeeper in the market, or giving chances to almunia and fabianski, vito mannone should be considered for his performance in the fullham away match.
    why doesnt wenger rotate his squad so that the amount of injuries shall be less?

    * WHY ROTATING PLAYERS IS NOT DONE? (it can reduce the amount of injuries)

    pls lay these questions down to Mr.Wenger!!

  29. Ask him if he knows about the Arsenal effect in East Africa and probably the whole world…its quite evident coz when walcott tore thro liverpools defence during the CL to cut the ball across for adebawhore to score…kampala city(uganda) erupted making the president think a coup was takin place…..so when the fans feel like they are being cheated does he and the players really understand what this team means to us????

  30. When will he buy Messi ? 😉 Just kidding. er… why not? 😉

    Maybe I would ask him that in the worst case that he would leave The Arsenal after his current contract if he can see anyone in the football world coming behind him and filling his footsteps.
    And does he think that he knows someone who could do his job better ? Does he know any manager who could take the club to a new next level and stay within the budget ?

  31. As soon as I saw the headline the first thing that immediately came to mind was the question about injuries. During the 80s teams used only 13 or 14 players all season, can you imagine that being possible now? Go with the injuries question mate

  32. My tuppence worth, I’d ask whether AW thinks that Arsenal will ever be in a financial position to compete to buy £80 million players such as Ronaldo or Messi like the big big clubs.
    It would at least lower the expectations of some of the new breed of supporters we have.
    (I’m obviously expecting the answer to be No, of course not, stupid boy lol 🙂 )
    Failing that, a generic question about what AW deems to be the optimum team average age of players to be successful, ie the right mix of experience and youth.

  33. What hurts most…unfair criticism from the press or unfair criticism from the “fans” ? Does he ever read any blogs?

  34. Can you pls ask Wenger when he and Pat Rice intend on going on a training course that may teach them any form of tactics rather than just telling the kids to go out and play? Its pathetic, its like saying to your son playing for his under 8’s team ‘go out and have fun’.

    Pls also remind him that he is lucky enough to be managing one of the best clubs in Europe(which i happily accept is largely down to him) and that there millions of fans around the world that have been let down for the past 5yrs whilst he continuously flogs a dead horse by insisting on playing below average kids – kids that didnt even come through the ‘academy’, but were instead bought.

    Can you also ask him to lower the season ticket prices and ask him to tell the stewards to stop telling people to sit down.

  35. ask him if we will get a defensive coach. preferably one that knows how that cluster shizzle works. few more sensible signings, less injuries and we’re there.

  36. Hey Red Gun..

    I really think that you have asked the 2nd best question (obviously I am the first). I think that the youth system is the result of stadium debt. When he saw that we would not have so much money as others he started the youth project very prominently. Probably he would not have gone so fast with youth if we did not had to pay the stadium debt.
    But to see his youth programme as his arrogance is definitely not right. We can see it as giving more opportunity to some player like Denilson but definitely not as arrogance.

  37. Well I can personally answer a bunch of these questions-

    nowenger and tekena – i think maybe you should stop with the crazy pills.

    RedGun- I don’t think it is either. It is a desire to become the best. The best couldn’t regularly compete at Emirates, so we had to put up with severe debt for under 10 years and then a small manageable debt from now on as we can now compete with some of the best wages and reasonably transfer fees, incl. breaking our record signing recently for Arshavin. The youth set-up was initially an idea of necessity but why wouldn’t you believe in players that could get you Champions League football at such a young age, players that have captained Brazil at youth stages, Cesc!, the great british hopes! and so on. And now they are being supplemented with the likes of Vermaelan and Chamakh, so it only being a youth set-up is a myth. The desire to have the best, most-suitable and level headed players we can afford and if we had to go a cheaper option between 05-08 then that’s just the happening.

    Canadian Gooner- I recommend reading Arsénal: Making of a Modern Superclub

    Abhishek- Rafa especially was making noises about reserves being able to compete in competetive leagues like in Spain but in reality, it’ll never happen and so such an idea would be a waste of money?

    Rhys- The way we play, that possession football, has the opposition chase us until they are out of position and tired, leaving spaces for us to exploit. Naturally they are going to be more likely to tire and forget their tactics later as play goes on. Asking about his daughter is p. weird. I’m sure he can afford terrific education but I don’t see what his family has to do with us supporting le arse.

    Hadley- There is a lot of talk about this wherever you read. Increase speeds and sprints are important. Also proper recognition of illnesses and injuries that had been neglected in the past. The recent FourFourTwo has a good article on ProZone which cites Wenger not acknowledging proper injuries as recent as Pires in ’02 and dealing with them properly.

    Mark- of course we will. This year we knocked 90+m off the debt, there is no reason to say that figures like that couldn’t be collected in the future to buy superstars.

  38. I’d ask if he feels that, after achieving a CL spot for the past ten years while making a profit in the transfer market and promoting so many young, mental tough players, he feels like he’s achieved all that can be achieved in football. And whether he’s actively thinking about stepping aside to focus on other challenges, and if so, whether he’s going to have a hand in selecting his successor.

    The other question would be whether he wears Arsenal boxer shorts. But that might be a bit personal.

  39. What is happening with Vela
    Why are his substitutions always reactionary to going down and ineffectual
    Why did we miss out on Smalling
    Why does there always seem to be a different area of the team that is not up to scratch every year
    What assurances can he provide that he will strengthen the GK CB (need 2) midfield Diaby and Denilson are crap. Decent backups for Arshavin Theo
    Why don’t are players run with the ball and beat FBs
    Why don’t we press the ball as at the start of the season
    Why do we always fall apart when faced with any decent team
    Why do we have no plan B. Our formations designed to get the best out of Fab so when he’s not available, or when it’s not working, why don’t we change the emphasis. All the managers of “rivals” have released a comment to the effect of we know how to play arsenal. And have backed up their claims. Humped by Utd Chles Spurs Hammers City (Barca). what are we going to do to stop this

  40. I’d also ask whether his lack of spending this season is due entirely to him, or whether there is pressure from the board to keep cash reserves high. I’d ask him to blink once if it’s due to the board, and blink twice if Gazidis is standing next to him with a gun at his side.

    So many questions, so little time…

  41. “While it would be fair to say there are many different kinds of team captain it would also be fair to say that some of Arsenal’s greatest achievements in the Wenger era have come when there’s been strong leadership on the pitch – Patrick and Tony being obvious examples. While individual responsibility may well be a laudable ambition do you agree that a strong and dominating on-field team captain is essentially a twelfth man capable of changing the course of any match. And if you do agree (that a strong-minded captain is crucial) then ideally how many team captains should there be in a squad since obviously one would not be sufficient.”

    That’s what I’d ask since nobody else would.

    The danger being Wenger answering “what was the question again?” at which point just say “Duh? I thought you might say that” and hand him a printed copy.

    The bit at the end stops him from simply saying “yes”.

  42. I would ask:
    Now that we have our new stadium and we are a little bit more buoyant financially, would he consider taking in more up-and-coming stars to compete more strenuously for shirts with his proteges from the Youth program?
    Does he think he needs a little more help in buying, training and organizing our defense?

  43. Ask him what costs more – a new goalkeeper or Almunia and Flappyhandski’s continous f**k ups!?

  44. Samuel

    I know that its possible in Spain and not allowed in England. But what I propose is that we create a new club altogethar near Arsenal if possible. It can have less seats and then it can compete as an independent club. So we can transfer player seamlessly between the two clubs in each transfer window.

    We can obviously share our training groundds. That ways our reserve players can have competitive matches to play and we dont need to loan so many players.

  45. I have enjoyed reading this for the last few months, keep up the good work.

    I have two questions,
    who does AW think is gonna win the world cup?
    His economics degree is wasted in futebol, is there any chance of going political? He could get any country out of debt in a few years.

  46. Tony! Ask him would he consider putting in a £75,000,000 bid for Messi just to piss off Barcelona. No way they would accept it but it would cause all sorts of bother. Everytime they make a reference to Cesc make another formal bid for one of their established stars. Then they would keep turning us down so when they mention or make an approach for one of ours we can point out that we have no intention of doing business with them as they refuse to ever sell to us.
    Henry, Hleb,Overmars, Petit, Van Bronkhorst with nobody coming the other way(open to correction there cesc signed as a youth)

    They bid for Clichy we ask for£15 mil plus iniesta, the ask for Cesc we ask for Messi. They say “We cant give you our best players” We say “Now you know how we feel Sod off!”

    Better still everytime we get asked about one of our players we should have a £40,000,000 price tag on them with £120,000,000 on Cesc all payable up front. If they ask to pay over several years we completely ridicule them in the press saying that they are broke and want to get top players on a layaway plan and they must be in crisis etc. We then publicly offer to help stage a charity event to raise money for them.

    See how often they would make public comments about buying our players after that eh.

    While you are at it ask him would he consider suing the relevant National FA the for wages and expences of the next player that they send back injured from a pointless friendly. Take them all the way to the European court and once victory is secured there see how many of our players are called up mid season for non-qualifiers.

  47. Abishek I like your idea and I think it would help the players. I don’t know how the system in the lower leagues is working but it could well be that in a few years that “youth” club could be in the professional football league and so the players would have plenty of time and expierence gained.
    You could also lend out players, you don’t even need to use transfers.
    They even could use the Emirates stadium as there is no law against sharing a football stadium with another team. They could just open up the lower tier of the stadium for their games and who knows they maybe could attract some crowds in to the stadium and get big revenue ?
    They even could call them selves Arsenal Youth. After all in Manchester the two teams have the same name it is just United and City that is different in their names.
    We could come every week to the Emirates …

  48. Terrence I very much like your ideas. LOL. Maybe at some moment in time it would be wise to step being to much gentleman and do the same as they do.
    We could even after an offer is turned down make a new offer next week and offer 1 £ more. 😉

    But it will never happen I think. Our board will never let us lower the standards….. sack the board. 😉

  49. Two questions.
    1. Which you players does he see breaking through next year?
    2. He has highlighted defensive vulnerability this year-what is the principle cause of that and how will he address that for next season.

  50. 1 question :

    “Sir, considering his great dribbling skill, tendency to attack all the time, and laziness to do the dirty work when losing the ball, how about the possibility of using Diaby as Striker next season ?

  51. I would love to know what the answer is to the last question. I believe that solving INJURY mystery might be key to unlocking a cupboard full of trophies. OH… and for once I’d like a real honest answer and what steps are being taken to address this problem. I’d just like to know 🙂

    Abhishek…. I’d love it if it were to happen.. But i don’t see it happening to be honest. Although i dont see why Arsenal cannot have a tie-up or MOU with a couple of lower league teams for loaning out of youth players on a regular basis… What do y think Walter? Would that still be “in” with the authorities?

  52. As far as I know it would. As long as they don’t have to play each other.
    BTW did anyone see the goals we scored yesterday in the reserves. That was shooting from outside the box.

  53. Terence Mcovern – I would LOVE Arsenal to do this! While we’re talking of tit-for-tat in football, I think we should charge away fans exorbitant ticket prices if their team does likewise (Chelsea & Barcelona spring instantly to mind – paying 70 quid to sit in the heavens at the Camp Nou was severely taking the piss).

  54. i would like to know what life is like being a professional manager:
    lord wenger/sir arsene/mr wenger/so mate do you tend to spend you whole life planning tactics for the next run of games/training/transfers/next season?

  55. the two questions you need to ask him are

    1. in the last few seasons have you spent all your transfer budget, or is it accumalating so that you this summer have a large budget to buy the players needed.

    2. why do you not rotate the squad more, change one player every week so that each get rested on a regualar basis and so we can lessen the chances of injuries and also stop what happens now and we see three and four changes for a game and the whole chemsistry of the side falls apart, one change at a time each and every week no matter who we are playing would be a better policy

  56. Do you think our current youthfull team added with some players could do an invincible season in the near future ?

  57. Ummm, I believe it is against the rules to have another team? If it was legal, I’m sure Sheikh ManCityFella would have bought them all just to make them lose to his team. We can have feeder clubs but only outside our division but we cannot own them because it would be too easy to question their loyalties if they played each other.

    I personally love the idea of trying to buy Messi every week and pissing them off but I think Wenger has bit too much class to fuck with others teams like his have to. Do onto others as you would like done onto you etc.

  58. Perry we should also close all the catering and half the toilets on their section and if we could come up with a way of lowering the front of their seats by a few inches so the backs are higher.

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