By Walter Broeckx
The life behind the scenes of Untold is sometimes very funny. After my article that I had written about Wenger I read a comment that said that it was a “Very AKB written article”. I think I will take this as a compliment then.
He was first time poster so he can be excused for maybe not knowing that this is what one could call an AKB website. That does mean that we do write a few AKB-articles. That the writer then continues by saying “but any other top club would have fired him by now” means that he didn’t get the meaning of the article as I think in the article one could see why Wenger has not been fired by the board.
First and for all…. we are not ANY other top club. We are a different kind of top club. As Tony has pointed out on many occasions Arsenal is different in that in most cases it always has given time to their managers to work for the club. We never have been a club that has changed their manager as we change from underwear. So what other top clubs do is of no interest to Arsenal.
I wonder if the person who wrote this comment has ever entered the Arsenal museum that is in the building outside the Emirates stadium on the North Bank. Because if he would have done this and I have done it 2 times already, then he surely would have seen the letters that hang out there. The words saying: We do it the Arsenal way. Come to think of it, as he claimed that his family supports Arsenal since the 1920’s I sure hope that he has visited the museum because if not it would be a bloody shame.
But these words ‘We do it the Arsenal way’ are very important and is something that every fan should remember. We don’t do like that other former Middlesex club that now is situated in North London. They do it like a top club. They fire and hire managers like ‘top clubs’ do. But it is not because you do that that you are a top club. Compare the hiring and firing of managers with what ‘non top club’ (according to our writer) Arsenal has done. And who has been the most successful since 2007. A year he liked to use as a turning point for an unknown reason for me.
It brought the ‘acting like a top club’ rivals 1 league cup trophy in 2008. Arsenal won 2 trophies since 2007. Tottenham has been in the CL once. Arsenal all these years. So Arsenal not acting like a top club according to this writer won more and was more successful than the club who pretends to be a top club by firing a manager without giving him time to build.
But what the writer completely misses is the fact that the board knew the difficulty of the task that Wenger was facing. I really don’t know how people can just dismiss the problems Arsenal had in those years. If they don’t get it by now I really wonder when ever they will be able to get it. But hey, I am a patient man and I will try to give the problems again and list them.
All the money going to the building of the new stadium even before 2007. No money available to buy top class players until the season 2013-2014. Two teams coming from nowhere sponsored by bags of money from outside football and still having to fight a team that was declared the flag ship of the PL and had to end near the top by all means and who has an enormous financial advantage because of their worldwide sponsorship deals and visibility.
Now if one would say that we average fans didn’t know that then I think it is because those who don’t know or knew it were not really looking for it. Or closed their eyes for it. Because it was out in the open. Not in the words we use now. No, it was a bit hidden but anyone who could read between the lines had seen it. I think most Untolders have known about the problems for years. And that is the reason why they kept calm and waited for the tide to turn.
But what we supporters think is in a way not important. What the board thinks is more important for what happens. It is they who hold the key to fire a manager. And it is they who have more expertise and knowledge than the average fan even when his family supports Arsenal since the 1920ies. And it is the board who knows the real situation when it comes to how much money can be spend.
So it is clear that the board knew all along and I think that they have been very happy with the way Wenger has done his job. And as the name Dein was mentioned in his comment I just want to say that it was Dein who brought Kroenke to the club. It was Dein who wanted to move us out of North London and take us to Wembley and not build the Emirates.
This doesn’t mean that I want to take too much away from Dein. As he clearly has done great things for Arsenal (like bringing in Wenger) but he also had a few things that I am happy that didn’t work out. Just as Wenger has admitted to having made mistakes, Dein also had his moments of mistakes.
Not firing Wenger “as any other top club would have done” is for me a reason to love my club even more than if they would have “acted as those other top clubs”. I want Arsenal to do it as they proclaim to do it in the museum: We do it the Arsenal way. No need to compare us with those other clubs. We are different.
- Arsenal v Newcastle: the team and league positons AFTER the game.
- Arsenal v Newcastle: injuries, yellow cards and recent form
- Arsenal v Newcastle: the referee who just doesn’t oversee home wins
- Newcastle United’s weakness revealed and what they could do. Arsenal v Newcastle United.
- Arsenal v Newcastle: the tackles, fouls and yellow cards compared