What exactly do these results against Liverpool tell us?

By Tony Attwood

Looking at the responses to Arsenal’s match at Liverpool I began to wonder if in making the key issue in the build up to this match last season’s result, we weren’t missing the real point.

For is being beaten by Liverpool, or indeed any other team, a sign of disaster and a sign that everything must change and the manager should go?  If we were to have changed managers after a poor result, would that have helped us?

We know of course that most of the time for most clubs changing managers is a disaster.  But what of the recent results?  Are they a pointer to future results, or are they an irrelevance?

Here’s a snippet from Arsenal/Liverpool history

Season Date Home  Result Away AFC’s lge pos
1999/0 13 Feb Arsenal 0 – 1 Liverpool 2
  28 Aug Liverpool 2 – 0 Arsenal
1998/9 9 Jan Arsenal 0 – 0 Liverpool 2
  22 Aug Liverpool 0 – 0 Arsenal
1997/8 6 May Liverpool 4 – 0 Arsenal 1 (Double)
  30 Nov Arsenal 0 – 1 Liverpool
1996/7 24 Mar Arsenal 1 – 2 Liverpool 3
  27 Nov Liverpool 4 – 2 Arsenal*
  19 Aug Liverpool 2 – 0 Arsenal
1995/6 1 May Arsenal 0 – 0 Liverpool 5
  23 Dec Liverpool 3 – 1 Arsenal
1994/5 12 Apr Arsenal 0 – 1 Liverpool 12
  11 Jan Liverpool 1 – 0 Arsenal*
  28 Aug Liverpool 3 – 0 Arsenal
1993/4 26 Mar Arsenal 1 – 0 Liverpool 4
  2 Oct Liverpool 0 – 0 Arsenal
1992/3 31 Jan Arsenal 0 – 1 Liverpool 10
  23 Aug Liverpool 0 – 2 Arsenal

* League cup result.  All others are Premier League.  League position is the position at the end of the season, not the time of the match.

It seems from this that Arsenal v Liverpool and Liverpool v Arsenal are not really very good indicators of what happens season by season, because the heaviest defeat came in the year we won the Double.

OK, maybe there was an excuse.  We had already won the League and put the reserves out for the game in May 1998.

So let’s try it another way.  Saturday 23 December 2000.  That’s interesting because we had by that stage a team including Vieira, Henry and Bergkamp plus other notables.  And it was in December, just like the 2-2 draw we’ve just seen.   What happened then – and next?

Well, what happened on 23 December 2000, was we lost 4-0.  Shock horror, scream, scream, sack the manager, sack the board, and the players… except that blogging wasn’t really established then, so it was left to the press to scream, horror, horror etc etc.

I’ve actually published a review of the game, and shown the full teams for that date.  It is on the Arsenal History site.

So we lost 4-0, with a team containing some of our best players of the last 50 years.

And what happened?   Well in 2000/1 we came second, one point ahead of Liverpool.  It was the third year running we had come second.  Were there calls for Wenger to go?  I don’t recall any.

And it is rather fortunate there were not, because the following season we won the League and FA Cup Double.  For the third time.

The following season, 2002/3 we came second again, the games at Highbury and Anfield were both drawn, but in 2003/4 we beat Liverpool 4-2 at home, and won the League.

Now that is rather an interesting moment, because in the build up to the match the press were utterly certain Arsenal were falling apart, crashing down, hitting the dust and all sorts of other rather feeble and simplistic sayings.  If you’d like to take a peek at what they were saying, and how it was that we won 4-2, that is also on the history site.

So what am I trying to say?

Basically, a result against Liverpool, or indeed all sorts of bad results don’t actually mean that we won’t win anything.  26 February 2001 – remember that?  We lost to Man U 6-1.    Our team was Seaman, Luzhny, Cole, Grimandi, Stepanovs, Pires, Vieira, Parlour, Silvinho, Wiltord, Henry.  And what did we do in 2001/2?  We won the league.

Past results don’t tell us much.

Untold Index


73 Replies to “What exactly do these results against Liverpool tell us?”

  1. @Gouresh,
    I think Tony is merely pointing out that individual results have no real bearing on how things will stand at the season’s end.
    And past stats seem to confirm this.
    As a rather old supporter of our great Clu8b, going back 80 years or so, I have always accepted the unacceptable with regard to Arsenal’s performances. Defeat clutched from the jaws of victory and vice versa.
    Since the late 1930’s, we have never retained a Championship, no matter how well we played in winning in the first place.
    All this means is that in return for 100% support, Arsenal FC will give us triumph and disaster in equal measure….not necessarily easy to accept by the fainthearted.
    But that’s the way it is. 😉

  2. Thanks Tony, I should check the history site more often, very informative.

    Gouresh, if you don’t get it that’s fine, those of us who usually get it got it, again, without a problem.

  3. It shows me we had a pretty dismal record against Liverpool in the 90s and early 00s! Think it has improved a bit subsequently? Any chance of extending the table of results to the present day (and, for old times sake, going back to May ’89! In fact, I have a vague recollection that we won there three times in a row in the 70s…).

  4. I think I got what Chief Tony is saying. He is saying Arsenal high rate of failure in the big games don’t count to the extent of calling for heads to roll at the Emirates Stadium by the Gooners. Right? Well, I am not one of those calling for any head to roll. However, I am calling for an end to the Gunners failure to win the big games. I know we beat Spurs 2wice last season, and drew with Man City, Chelsea, Man U and Liverpool at the Emirates. But lost at away to the quartet. If I may cry over split milk which is of no any use. Had the Gunners won 3 out of the 4 big away games last season, the Gunners would have been Champions. Okay, our missing the title was said to be down to some injuries which some top Gunners suffered. But the same senero is unfolding again before our own eyes this season. Even when we had are supposedly tops at Chelsea, we lost. I can see these loses the Gunners have been suffering in the big games are not totally down to the injuries of the top Gunners that couldn’t be fielded by the boss. The boss himself does cause these big game defeats to happen by fielding some incompetent players to play or omit players that are competent and best suited for a particular big game, and making the wrong substitutions. At the Anfield, it was only Flamini that initially played at CDM whereas the boss should have paired him with Coquelin right from the start of the game. As the boss did not favour Podolski to start the match, he should have subed Ox with the proven Podolski instead of the not sure Cambpell. Why should the boss subed Giroud for not the very fit and smaller Monreal when the big Liverpool players are still raiding the Gunners goal unrelentingly. In my opinion, Giroud can defend crossings and still attack. Can’t he? Sanchez should have been left-on to finish the game as he could still have scored or assist to score as game at 1-2 was not yet over. Mertesacker ducked rather than to attack the heading of Skrtle. Why? Is it the first time he is doing that this season? No, he has been doing those poor defendings that proved to be costly in the Emirates Anderlecht and the Liberty Swansea games to mentioned 2. The Zonal marking should become Zonal/Rugby marking? It should in my own view. Zonal marking alone can’t stand all the barrages. Can it? Should Jenkinson have been kept at the Emirates? Some Gooners have opined he should as Chambers has proved to lack proper pace. Jenko has improve West Hammers defending. Thank God he won’t be defending against Arsenal when the Gunners visit WH to beat them. Should the boss base his selection on competent Gunners and not longer his favourites Gunners?

  5. We were overrun in midfield yet the £8m man did nothing. Left Welbeck on, to do exactly what wasn’t entirely obvious. I feel sorry for big Per. Played on the ‘wrong’ side at CB and with a different, non CB partner each week and having to worry about Chambers, who’s been thrown in at the deep end and is sinking. After Swansea, any sensible manager wouldn’t have thrown him in at RB ever again, or at least not against a side with any pace. Remember we can’t plead injuries as an excuse for our terrible defence, as it’s only Koscielny who’s out. Take a bow, Mr “30 years in football”. 

  6. The current criticism of the Arsenal manager is not that he failed to buy between 2007 and 2009, but that at least two years after he was permitted to spend money, the same problems exist.
    Flamini is, never was nor never will be a good enough option for a side with supposed title aspirations. Crystal Palace (Mile Jedinak), Southampton (Morgan Schneiderlin), West Ham (Cheikhou Kouyate) and Sunderland (Lee Cattermole) all have better options in defensive midfield. That should be deeply embarrassing for Arsenal and Wenger.

  7. I’m genuinely so bored of this regime now my reaction to everything in the game makes Avram Grant look over-enthusiastic. The thing is, I wouldn’t mind 4th place being the extent of our ambition if that was all we were capable of, but I know that with the money spent and a quality manager we could dominate domestic football. The players’ motivation is always changing, there is no proper defensive structure, he refuses to engage in tactics or consideration of the opposition, he refuses to buy players to strengthen major weak points (hence Flamini run ragged AGAIN) and not only that, he actually has contempt for anyone who ‘dares’ to challenge his failed methods. It is so pointless going from game to game discussing the same repeated failure, self-imposed by this awful manager. Only falling out of the top 4 could make a difference. I think this year really might be the year our luck finally runs out, but even then, why is it that we’re accepting this objective? We spend more than Chelsea in wages (or certainly very close for those who want to rely on last year’s accounts) and yet their squad is light years ahead of ours.

  8. I don’t want to add to the already huge pile of comments about Wenger’s inability to build a winning team. But what else can one say?! His biggest impediment is his own super inflated ego! He simply doesn’t or won’t see the obvious. Never finishing the squad. Never taking responsibility for 10 years of failure. Never risking spending in the transfer market to complete the team. This man’s failures are his own making. We have not had a team in place at the beginning of the season to cope with the rigors of he PL. And he has to know it. Yet his arrogance spins everything. Our team yesterday was awful. We got lucky to get a tie. Debuchey s goal is the typeweusually concede. Just answer this. How was nobody covering Skirtel on a corner? At the end of the game in his injury time? Why was Chambers on the wing? Why was Sanchez again, knackered and in the red zone, left on till late? Why was our possession so low for a team that supposedly plays the Arsenal Way? He had no solutions, no answers to simple problems. Motivation is gone because he works in a climate of complete control with no consequences for failure in what matters. Profit is king at our club. Even the players no seem to accept mediocrity. They have developed egos like their leader. Weak, lacking in tactics, no grit, no mettle, content with status quo season to season. Remember what Wenger said about taking 2nd place for 20 years. What other manager would say that with the potential at a club like ours? He won the title undefeated and made a comment like that and many others that defy belief. The time had come for change, for sure.

  9. Its not just the 2 2 draw is it? It’s the pathetic performances time time again. Read my points above, properly, you will find what I am saying. So glad the crowd is turning on him, hopefully a few morerresults like this will cranky the pressure up

  10. Where are we at as a club where we miss so many of the basics? Who is training Gibbs? Who has told him that his mistakes are so frequent, he’ll be gone if he doesn’t buck up his ideas? Who is pulling Mertesacker to one side and lambasting his outrageously weak defensive organisational skills?Who is accountable on the pitch?35% posession, our lowest since opta started recording the statistic. We conceded 27 shots. We conceded another lead.What is this? We haven’t shown any promise and it’s December. We don’t look capable of pulling anything together. We’re an absolute shower and the manager doesn’t know what to do.

  11.  I don’t know.  But when you have a job spec loaded with as many attributes as we do, you have the best chance of unearthing that person. Full stadium, London location, brand new training facilities, consistent cashflow that allows us to buy big, a low baseline of success along with a board that afford a lot of power. It’s the dream job.Who could the new man be? Klopp is bombing big time right now, but he’s lost major players and the game has moved on a level, but he might get that spark back with new players. Simeone seems to be the man who has things right at the moment, but his success might be down to a fluke out with his batch of players. Tomas Tuchel was doing great things at Mainz but he might mess up his next role. There are no guarantees in what the next manager might do, but one thing is for sure, give me a new project, give me a new energy… give me something more inspiring than the constant vanilla rerun we suffer predictably every year.‘Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.’That’s all I want from my club…

  12. The problem is that it is not the Liverpool game in isolation. It’s the 2-2 game v Hull at home, the 2-1 defeat by man u even though we created more chances and missed them or losing at Swansea when we had taken the lead. We are not playing well and we are weak defensively.

    The injury blight is once again severely hampering us and has done for many seasons. We were without any of our first choice midfield yesterday and it showed. Flamini just isn’t good enough and Ox is not yet equipped to play CM against good sides away from home.

    I worry as we have West Ham and Southampton away in the next ten days and unless we get some midfielders back, and Kos then I think we will flounder again. We are capable of going on a good run when our
    absentees return, however, if we lose to both West Ham, Southampton the gap between these teams and man u will be too much for us to catch up even with most of our players back

  13. Arsène noted that, in part, the players were scarred by the savagery of last season’s defeat. It’s a staggering admission, this is something that should have been used a spur to an aggressive performance from the kick-off became a shackle, inducing timidity in performance.

    Even worse was the admission that Arsenal were out-thought tactically in the first half. There was nothing unfamiliar about the way Liverpool played; they used 3-4-3 at Old Trafford, at whatever Dean Court is called now. Brendan Rodgers even bragged in midweek that he should be hailed as a tactical genius for using it.

    Was nobody at Arsenal paying attention?

    But what I think gnaws away most in the manner in which Liverpool scored. Szczesny played well yesterday, making several telling interventions. It isn’t lauded like De Gea’s last weekend because his defence, midfield and attack let him down. Badly.

  14. Look, I know Arsenal are missing key players and that has an impact but let’s be honest, when they were fit, we weren’t seeing any vastly improved performances.

    Arsène reacted to Olivier Giroud’s injury by signing Danny Welbeck. Knowing of Laurent Koscielny’s injury and the likelihood of Vermaelen leaving (or being injured if he stayed) begs the question as to why a man who is not scared of spending money, chose not to.

    Every summer sees the demand for a defensive midfielder. There have probably been a full XI of them in the past few years but Arsène has resisted quite willingly so far. The problem with this position is tactical. The isolation of the first half highlighted how easily the midfield trio of Arsenal can be neutralised. Outnumbered and outmanoeuvred.

    The boost that winning the FA Cup was supposed to bring hasn’t been seen. Or if it has, how bad would this season have been? There wasn’t any expectation of a title win but a tangible sign of progressing towards that aim? A comfortable and assured third place would have felt like that. Even a ding-dong battle with a good side for that outcome would be an improvement of witnessing the sheer mediocrity above us in the table.

    It hasn’t happened and yesterday offered very little hope of that prospect. Rant over…

  15. Not sure about le grove but even the great arseblog noted the bare facts this in his morning article.

  16. Walter it’s not LG. I’m just really worried. We aren’t playing at a consistent level. We’ve played really poorly at times this season and defensively in certain games we’ve been all over the place. We yet again have a crippling injury list, our first choice midfield was absent yesterday along with Rosicky and Kos. We have two really tough games away in the next ten days. Unless we get some players back I can see us struggling and falling further behind. We are capable of going on a run but I worry it will be too late and teams like West Ham, Southampton and man u.

  17. Walter, the reality is that Arsenal are performing at a pace that should be of concern. It is fortunate that the league as a whole is under performing. The concern equally is that we are not capitalizing on such opportunities. If you continue to remain oblivious to this, you will do so on your own. For as good as you make Arsene and the lads to be, the numbers no longer are bearing you or them out. This is a struggle of a season and we are only half way home. Lots to play and signs are troubling.

  18. Kirmann & others who know how to project manage- I’ve found your new project & your searched for answer – go support Chelsea.

    You have no right to call Arsenal your club if you don’t appreciate the broader picture. Arsene brought the club to this level, superb infrastructure and cusp of consistent greatness. You think it is easy to take it to heaven because Wenger has given you glimpses of it. There is still money to be earned before heaven is attainable so please come up with some true support rather than ‘Wenger out’. It is time for many so called supporters to move on. Those of us who know how good these ‘bad’ times are will keep supporting our club.

  19. toooooo much attention to king of “adequate” troll gouresh
    you guys just don’t get it!!!
    if team do not win the league in december you all must shout at menager players and said “we finished why you can’t see it”

    some people just don’t understand the meaning of the word SUPPORT

  20. Thats top notch trolling there. The similarity of writing styles between all these “people” is very interesting but I have to say you “guys” lost me at Lee Cattermole. Seriously, Lee Cattermole?

  21. And one other thing. The whole “our wage bill is bigger than Chelsea” thing. So what? They have the luxury of buying a few extra TEAMS worth of players to see which ones worked (while also keeping them away from rivals) and loaning/selling the rest off. If Arsenal spent £167 million on Veron, Shevchenko, Adrian Mutu, Zhirkov, Torres, Wright-Phillips, and Bosingwa we would be sunk. Lee Fucking Cattermole. Nice try.

  22. In despite of what some idiots say here, I still think Arsenal will improve ten times this season eventually. Almost all the teams are playing with their best players while we are still without Ozil, Walcott, Diaby, Kos, Wilshere, Ramsey and Arteta. And these injuries are caused by inept and corrupt referees. And still fucking us up at Anfield. The rest of the team are either newly bought, just came back from injuries or tired of World Cup summer. I never thought of winning anything this season because the players need to adjust and teamwork needs time. Once the stability is achieved, the Arsenal will be at full force. Done is done, let’s look into the next game.

  23. From time to time articles like this one appear in Untold, and frankly speaking, I fail to see the point.

    Anyone who tries to draw conclusions from a single match is a fool, when a season is determined by 38 matches. It is mathematically absurd: each match is accountable for less than 2.7% of the season. So for sure we could find endless examples for seasons where we had an X result vs. team Y and won the league (or managed to finish above team Z).

  24. Hands up… I read Untold & LeGrove and enjoy the balance even if both sites demonstrate the extremes of the current debate.

    I have always defended Wenger, even in my limited posting on LG, however it is becoming more apparent (to me anyway) that the time for change is fast approaching.

    I will always respect AW’s achievements, commitment to the club and hope to remember what he delivered in the first half of his tenure.

    The problem I have is, I cant see particular improvement of late, the availability of extra fu ding seems to have brought regression rather than progress and both statistics and performances highlight this.

    I would love for Wenger to return to his golden era but with each passing poor performance or disappointing result my belief wains a little more.

    The question I have is, how long do we let this continue? If we finish 6th do we persevere? Will players such as Ozil & Sanchez be satisfied with ending their careers at protect Arsenal?

    I suppose it would be easier to take if we still played that freeflowing, buccaneering football of the eary years but even that seems to have dried up.

    All becoming very sad, for me anyway.

  25. Barton, I think the sadness you feel comes entirely through not seeing the difference between LG and Untold. We produce evidence and structured argument.

    Do you think that under a new manager, magically the injury run would stop? Do you think that top players, on seeing a manager revered throughout all of the football world except among English journalists and the AAA, forced out, would come to Arsenal?

    Do you think that the dubious decisions of refs that we highlight, and which across one season referees whose support is with other teams also found, will suddenly stop if Wenger leaves?

    And do you think all this without evidence? Or do you have evidence? If so, show us your evidence, or at least your theoretical basis, and we can debate the point.

  26. “We know of course that most of the time for most clubs changing managers is a disaster.”

    Are you sure Tony? I think Chelsea proved that to be a myth.

  27. Kirman/Hemm/Tunnygriff/Ernest Reed

    While I was asleep a veritable onslaught… So many points. Not sure why I bother, but to deconstruct them in approximately chronological orger…

    Chambers at Right Back: Struggled against Swansea and Liverpool but has played well there in other games. He is young, performances will vary. “Wouldn’t have thrown him in at RB ever again” is a really dumb comment.

    Centre backs: Actually, no. Both Hayden and Monreal (who I think has done well at centre back) were also unavailable to start. And it is 50 years in football, actually…

    Failure to buy in 2007-9. Actually, plenty of criticism for Wenger for this reason during this time!

    Flamini. He can do a job there. Decent cover for Arteta. Can’t really blame him for Sunday’s shortcomings. More, that we were missing Ramsey, Wilshere, Diaby who all would have been better than a half fit Ox in that role. Jedinak, Schneiderlin, Kouyate and Cattermole (?!?) would all struggle to start ahead of Arteta, which I think is the benchmark here actually.

    Dominate domestic football? Are you serious? With Man C and Chelsea both having invested half a BILLION pounds over the last 5 years, and Man U not far behind (not to mention Liverpool and the Totts significantly outspending us), how did you figure that out? It is not just wages, it is also transfer spend, and Chelsea have had very few injuries this season. If the situation had been reversed, Arsenal would be ahead of Chelsea without question.

    Huge pile of comments? Not really. Even the Sun’s poll had 78% in favour of Wenger remaining! You extrapolate from one poor performance to conclude that the sky has fallen in. Progress had been steady over the past few years with ever increasing points per season. No team can play well every game. We have been really hamstrung by injuries this season.

    Transfers. Wenger has, in general, spent the money available. How much more in ticket prices would you be prepared to pay to finance increased transfers?

    Only a small minority of the crowd (not supporters) is turning on Wenger. Apart from the poll above, he had plenty of support during the Newcastle game.

    Gibbs has recently broken into the England team in possibly the most competitive position and has been a fine servant for the club in recent years. Mertesacker is having an indifferent run of form. It happens.

    …Full stadium, brand new traning facilities, consistent cashflow…. How do you think we have got into this position?

    Finally, reference to the real problem, injuries. I don’t think there has been a single game this season when we weren’t missing at least four regular starters so your point is invalid.

    So the one valid criticism of Wenger – injury management – is about the only thing you don’t castigate him for.

    “That’s all I want from my club…” Perhaps you need to find a new club? The club would be better off without you.

  28. Sammy The Snake
    but chlencie managers has one thing in common ..

    everyone of them “geniuses” come to chlencie on one condition

    “give me a big pile of money to buy anyone i ever want” then they all geniuses of course

  29. Sammy The Snake
    and even after buying every peles and maradonnas of the world… chlencie didn’t win every competitions the played..

    and last year they didn’t win anything at all

  30. @Tony, personally I don’t believe im influenced by mass opinion more what I see with my own eyes, in truth I think I sit somewhere in the middle of the debate.

    The debate I think that needs to be had is not ‘will a new manager improve us’ as its not a question that can be answered without it actually happening, there are examples of it working and failing in various scenarios.

    The question I think that needs to be answered is can the current manager improve us and on current form i have to say its looking less and less likely, where is the line in the sand? At what point do we have to make the jump.

    It seems with each passing disappointment we get closer to that point.

    I would love to be proved wrong but im becoming more and more pessimistic about the prospects of that happening as I think are many others.

  31. Barton – This is madness. An indifferent start to the season, with an obvious cause, and you are prepared to throw away 18 proven years of achievement (and top 4 every year with little money is an achievement)? Get some perspective! And very many more others understand the bigger picture and want Wenger to stay.

  32. Alex: My not ‘getting the article’ was nothing to with being a good supporter or bad. Just that after such a shambolic performance we on about some history between the two clubs and stats and all that rubbish.

  33. And, to be clear, you do not “sit in the middle of the debate”. To be fair, I don’t think I do either. But then I think I have an extremely good understanding of football having been a fan for over 40 years, having played at a decent level and being a qualified coach. I also understand business and finance.

  34. gouresh
    i think that the only thing that bring peace to everyone is give to every supporter a team to manage… and a blog where that managers will talk to themselves about whats went wrong

    im still sure that wenger is the best men for the job.
    and till theres a people on the field not the robots there always will be situations when teams will perform bad or horrible

    and theres no statistics that proof that thing are getting worse at arsenal.

    we are still in CL
    we win our first trophy in 9 years
    and i am sure that things are going to be better

    that is my way to support team players and wenger

    i am not a manager and never will be.
    but i know how to be a good supporter

  35. I think there is an issue here with support.
    Supporters have the right to complain when they see something that is wrong, it is how one complains that causes the problems. Hurling abuse is not the way at all, but strong arguments will do.

    On the other side, to not have any complaints or issues when something is wrong, just because one does not have any power to change it is also silly. One learns by interacting in things, here a discussion about Arsenal management, there one about FFP, and so on.

    Leaning too far to either side is not productive, a healthy balance is usually the way to go.

  36. Para – debate, yes. Be critical, yes. But be evidence-based and constructive.

    But once it descends into mindless slagging of the manager, the club, the players on the back of one poor performance then that is not OK. It wastes peoples’ bandwidth and detracts from the sensible debate that we had been having previously. That is what I object to.

    I found it cathartic to have a sensible debate with constructive people after the Liverpool game. But the possibly-coordinated attack late yesterday evening, which was so out of tone with everything that had gone before, is, frankly, pathetic.

    The arguments have been done to death previously. if no one had ever questioned Wenger’s tenure previously then it would be a worthwhile debate. I am not hearing anything new (and I suspect netiher is anyone else) therefore it is a waste of my time.

    More importantly, it detracts from and obscures the genuine debate around matters from the Liverpool game like:

    – Were our tactics correct?
    – Was the Ox fit?
    – Why did some players look jaded despite a (relative) degree of rest?
    – What is the best form of marking at corners?
    – Why is Mertesacker struggling to some extent this season?
    – How should we best deploy our centre back options?
    – Were there any psychological reasons for the poor performance at Liverpool?
    – Would the performance have been better if everyone had been available – or even a subset of unavailable players?

    Instead we get the performance in one match extrapolated to denigrate everything and anything to do with the club. Not only that, but none of the points raised are original, most are erroneous and some are downright mendacious. And very little is evidence based – just sweeping assertions with little justification.

  37. para
    nobody will ever take away your supporters right to protest
    just check arsenal HATE tv
    that is all this channel is about
    everyone is smarter talented and more experienced than wenger

    but is there ANY supporter sane enough to tel wenger what to do?

    i am lucky that i am no chlencie fun
    cos that’ll be a real problem for me

    arsenal healthiest club in every direction compared to all this oilSpoiled kings for a day.

    and yeah. i want my club to win every game and every tournament.
    but i know that this is just impossible.

    and i know that i will never tell engineer how to build a rocket
    will never tell to doctor how to do his job.

    and i know that i will never know better then a wenger does how to manage a team

    and i year… i can flatter myself that my voice is counted
    and that wenger is really interested in what EVERYONE who support arsenal is thinking
    but he is NOT.
    and all this “balance” stuff is sound wise, but i just want my team to be managed by professionals not that claude-morans from arsenalSHITtv

  38. I will not talk about finances as no one here knows the actual figure, neither do we know how the transfers work. Even sometimes when we agents on radio etc, they do not give the insides of their works. I will also not comment on the players as AW knows them better. I will speak what we can see on the pitch and at the moment its not looking good. We were fantastic against NC because we were allowed time & space. Against pool? right from the go, we were under intense pressure. Pool were pressing us on the top of our box strangling us. We weathered the strom for the 1st 20 mins. Their intentions were clear, get that early goal. Then? They then fell back & pressed us in their half. Not giving us a second on the ball. So what do we do? Keep trying to run with the ball. My 7 yr son counted 9 passes before we lost the ball. 9!! In situations like this there is a very very simple basic thing we should have done. But what the hell do I know? I haven’t managed top clubs to understand football. Looks like they teach u all these basic things when u do the pro licence badges. Played for 20 yrs does not count.

  39. I see a lot if the Wenger lovies always look to blame someone else and not Wenger. Look who picks the players??? Who buys the players??? Oh yeah one man. Who has unprecedented amount of power at a club the size of arsenal oh yeah WENGER. The players looked scared in the tunnel it was embarrassing. Every big game watch the players faces in the tunnel. They look petrified. I have never seen such boards play for arsenal. This manager can’t motivate he’s players to be pumped up and ready for war. He’s a poor motivator and needs to go ASAP for me. We need Diego Simone!!! Do you think he would tolerate Metersacker a 6ft6 man cowering??? No way. . He would tell these lightweight what he expects from he’s men on the pitch and if they don’t like it they can go to another team where being a coward is approved off . I’m not saying go out there and be overly aggressive or violent no. I’m saying show some guts and steel. I’m sick and tired of writing the same stuff every year!!! Why would you look scared in a tunnel??? The man can’t motivate he’s players. He has to go. How anyone can defend this clown now is just ridiculous . The key is not getting top 4. He actually believes what he’s going is right looool. He in he’s deluded mind is right. As he says 18 years

  40. Hemm

    “Wenger lovies”
    boring ….
    go and find some friends on arsenalSTUPID tv
    im sure your the one that they need the most

  41. Hemm – that really is pathetic! They are not scared!! They are focused on the match ahead.

    Anyway, as you clearly can’t be bothered to read and understand all the overwhelming evidence against your position I can’t be bothered to repeat it.

  42. A bit off topic but somebody mentioned it in an early post but what difference does Wengers wages have to do with anything. Would it be okay for him to be on £3m a year then?

  43. I am on the extreme as I have wanted him out before he signed up for us! Only two things to happen now. People stop going to the Wok and we lose a shedload of games and that will see him off. **** the sentiment – this is one great yawn and Smudge could be talking for the last decade. I hoped they (the scousers) had won has they deserved it and I support Arsenal (born within walking distance) not shaggy Arsene FC. Enough of this excuse for a football club. Time for total change before it gets comatose which would be some feat in this turgid world of ‘top level’ football. Watching my local team 9th tier and we were 3 down to a team at the bottom of the league. Floodlights refused to turn up and match was abandoned leaving opposition demoralised. Moral of the story is my team is acting/playing like Arsene FC. That you could not make up.

  44. @ Tony, I can’t, I’m addicted…

    My point was that articles like this are in my opinion an “apology” to some people who contend that there is a connection between us getting X result against some club, and I just don’t think we should be apologetic about it. In the end of the day, what counts is where we stand in May.

    Sorry if I was misunderstood!

  45. Pete
    What overwhelming evidence is this you speak about??
    You posted -But once it descends into mindless slagging of the manager, the club, the players on the back of one poor performance then that is not OK.-One poor performance are you sure??
    Then you put – Schneiderlin, Kouyate and Cattermole (?!?) would all struggle to start ahead of Arteta, which I think is the benchmark here actually.- Do you really think arteta is a better player than schneiderlin??
    Now i know youve never played at any sort of level.
    You are blind and blindly unable to see what is bringing this once mighty club down..

  46. @Pete, I dint want to argue particularly but I find you dismissal of my views disappointing, as I said before, its not a view I formed overnight and to an extent last years early season form and the cup win did serve to answer ‘some’ of my criticisms. Coupled with the resent signings, They also served to raise expectations.

    I suppose it all comes back to results and expectations, get the results and achieve what your expected to and the questions evaporate.

    Personally I feel as a club were better than the 4th place scrap and the odd cup.

    I’m not gonna troll you guys, its not my intention, just wanted to put forward a balanced more moderate viewpoint

  47. Nick – Schneiderlin is a decent player. Would he be better than Arteta for Arsenal? I’m unconvinced. There was an article on here a few months ago (think it was Walter’s) where Arteta’s stats as a DM where dissected and he rated very highly alongside anyone in the PL. He also fits very well with our system. The issue is that Arteta is getting old and has had a run of injuries. If Schneiderlin comes in then I would be happy to be proved wrong. But would hope that when we do bring in a new DM that player is better than Schneiderlin. As for me being blind, you are entitled to your opinion…

    Barton – Perhaps I was being a bit harsh but was pretty unhappy at some of the other negative comments overnight so sorry if I tarred you with the same brush as the likes of Hemm and Kiram (see my comment at 7.44). I think your key comment is “expectations” – but are you being fair here? Of course I am disappointed with how this season has gone to date, but it is not a complete disaster and it is readily explainable by the injury situation. I think it is far too early to even think about your “line in the sand”. Fat Sam had serious injury issues last season, the players came back and West Ham finished last season well and are flying this time.

    Sadly, it seems that we will continue to be short in centre midfield for at least the QPR and West Ham games but then it seems that everyone will be coming back at once – Arteta, Ramsey and Ozil. With Koscielny back in the defence. By mid-January with all those players getting match sharp, and Theo, we should be looking very good. Assuming no more injuries of course…

  48. Agreed Pete, I still have reservations about change, I hope when the time does come the club are well prepared. I just think were at a point where we need to have the discussion.

    Re Expectations, I think I am being fair, the club has been promising jam tomorrow for some time, FFP, commercial deals etc and in reality we are a European Super Clubs, one of the biggest clubs on the planet, the expectations will always be different to those that West Ham fans have. Were also owned by 2 of the richest men on earth so were secure in that sense.

    I know many feel that because of the above, AW is owed time and I used to agree, the question is how much?

  49. It’s deflating to concede a goal that late in the game. The guys couldn’t just defend for a few more minutes. The keeper goal keeper was being exposed time and again, when that happens, it’s only a matter of time before the goal goes in. They couldn’t even protect the box-18.

  50. Some fans were questioning Wenger’s tactics after the match but against 10 men, with the lead, you don’t go for more goals. Jose Mourinho wouldn’t go for more goals. He’d bring on more defenders. This is exactly the tactical shift Arsenal fans have been crying out for Wenger to make. But it’s damned if you do and damned if you don’t with Arsenal. Like I said above, there’s just too much “Arsene should’ve”

    Arsène should’ve… had the team work on corners
    Arsène should’ve… drilled the team in set play defending
    Arsène should’ve… scrapped the zonal marking
    Arsène should’ve… put a man on the post
    Arsène should’ve… brought on Theo Walcott instead of shoring up the defense to try to win the game
    Arsène should’ve… bought some more defenders this Summer
    Arsène should’ve… bought a hulking midfield presence
    Arsène should’ve… bought back Cesc Fabregas
    Arsène should’ve… won the game at the end, despite the defensive substititions and lapse in concentration on the corner with Gibbs off the line and four players in the area where Skrtl scored and no one jumping to get the ball, because Nacho Monreal had one of the best chances of the game in the 100th minute.

  51. Barton – But, as noted on a previous thread, we had FOURTEEN first team squad players unavailable to start on Sunday. A draw at Anfield, even if a scraggy one, is a great achievement in the circumstances.

    To remind you: Ospina, Koscielny, Bellerin, Rosicky, Arteta, Wilshere, Ozil, Ramsey, Diaby, Sanogo, Gnabry unavailable.

    Monreal, Walcott only fit for the bench.

    Hayden not yet match fit (part of one game for U21s).

    You must make allowances for this! Even Chelsea would be delighted with a draw at Anfield with 14 first team squad players, including 5 first choice starters, unavailable.

    I have absolute confidence that, with “average” numbers of injuries we will be at a title-winning level. It will still be hard to nose in front of Chelsea and Man City but it is very much possible. Let’s hope you can judge me next season on this (and, touch wood, the second half of this season).

  52. I notice that a lot of the AAA make a lot of assumptions and then post them as if they are fact. The reason i like this website and the reason that it is a step-up above most (if not all) other Arsenal blogs is that it comes to conclusions based on evidence and repeated analysis. People like Hemm let their own agenda against Wenger get in the way of receiving any enjoyment out of supporting this wonderful team. They say they support the team and not the manger; well like it or not Arsene is a huge huge part of the team, so i suggest you stop moaning like a spoilt brat at every opportunity and get behind the club, the manager, the players and everything Arsenal stand for.

  53. Good lord, I believe in free speech, and having a balance, but the reason I read Untold is that I don’t have to wade throught the same old regurgitated nonsense that people like Gouresh, Kirman, Hemm etc. are spewing on here in great quantities.

    For Christ’s sake, at least make your comments vaguely about the actual article you are commenting on, rather than repeating the same old rubbish you read somewhere else, and have come here to repeat without bothering to think for yourself.

    At the very least read the article and try to understand it, unlike Gouresh who admits he didn’t understand, probably didn’t bother trying, and goes on to spew his usual crap.

    Just be thankful you wankers haven’t been banned yet.

  54. By the way, Untold, we keep seeing everywhere that Wenger earns £8m a year, and this supposedly makes him one of the best paid managers in the world. Please can you investigate where this figure comes from. As far as I know, the only public figures are the total wage bill, that is, for each club all we know is how much in total they pay in wages, not just to players, manager, coaches etc., but to cleaning staff, receptionists etc.

    As far as I can tell, this £8m was invented and just accepted, and there is no way to verify or refute it, and the same for the supposed wages of other managers. Please can you investigate this matter.

  55. @ Quincy: Thanks for your highly intellectual response. keep it up. the next time, try taking you head out of the sand, then maybe you can see the things that we all can.

  56. Again i say….. This is a pro wenger site! The motto here is support. Cos its gonna be better….one day…eventually. We have a lengthy injury list, once they are back, all will be well. But if it isnt? Well….. We still support. U get it now? Thanks’****phew****

  57. chibyki
    “But if it isnt?”………!!?!?!??!?!
    “that what balanced way of support means”
    “that what real supporters do”
    complain, show “wengerout” banners, shout at wenger in metro..
    count his money, count years without a trophy

    and many other clever wise things that REALLY can change things
    cos just support the team&manager….is STUPID!!!!

  58. You guys don’t get it do you? We are making the same mistakes again and again. Will u tolerate this @ your place? How bloody naive can you all be? We are accused of saying the same the ‘crap’, why? Because be are doing the same crap.

  59. Gouresh – You state “…see the things that we all can”… Please note that you don’t necessarily speak for me on that one…

  60. Pete
    If you cant see that we are making the same mistakes year after year and arent improving as a team so be it.You keep blaming the referees ,players and pundits if it makes you feel any better but there is one common denominator in all this ,someone who has been here for the last 10 years and it isnt the players,refs and pundits.All that you need to see is the league table and results.You can manipulate stats all day to try and prove a theory but look at results without trying to use refs or injuries.

  61. Nick Lee
    we can’t make the same mistakes “year after year”
    cos we in top 4 every year
    cos the only teams we loose is Oilspoil clencie ManOil and Red’nose’army “a have refs personal phone number” Alex’s Mu

    teams that didnt count money, don’t give a fuck about FFP, has two-three equivalent teams on a bench and use incompetence refs mistakes (or “MISTAKES”)

    and we win our first trophy
    and everybody was happy

    and we buy ozil, alexis, danny, Debuchy, Chambo…

    what are this magic “the same mistakes”?!?!?
    we didn’t win the league by december? or what?

    or wenger didnt buy CD or is it favorite AAA’s mistake … wenger as a manager?

  62. Exactly Alex. Its beggars belief the amount of shit that the AAA regurgitate regardless of what happens. They will never be happy as they let their blind hatred of Wenger get in the way of being a true supporter. Again, they make assumptions (not even their own, but ones they have read on another blog) and pass them of as absolute fact.

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