Everything is borrowed: success is temporary


Being in a rather philosophical mood after the Monaco game, I felt the urge to consider and ruminate on Arsenal’s rather repetitive and even predictable performance year after year in the CL, the EPL and other competitions, with the exception of the FA Cup.

One thing that stands out for me is the rollercoaster aspect of our team on an almost predictable basis since the Invincibles. We have had serious ups and downs in almost everything we have done or tried to do. The stadium was a major up but it cost us dearly team-wise as we couldn’t counter the oilers and sugar daddy teams whose spending far outstripped us, and subsequently our results were less than we had become used to.

My father was always a pragmatic man and would remind me constantly that ‘everything was borrowed.’ He really meant that success or failure was temporary and that anything we thought we had was ultimately mortgaged and didn’t belong to us in any permanent way. He often reminded me that possessions were illusory and that good health, a wonderful job, a loving wife or partner, a close friend or confidant etc. could disappear in a single ‘Coup de Destin’  or as he called it a flip of life.

I am repeating this because it seems very a propos to the media excrement being liberally spread over the fertile aaa fields about the Arsenal ‘falling out or failing’ at the CL round of 16.

Of course, according to the aaa and the media we are only as good as our last failure and as everyone knows, including a French rag, the Arsenal are chokers and losers who are experts in failure and led by our master of disappointment, Arsene Wenger. This encompasses pretty well everything the aaa and Brit media hold dear and postulate with unbridled enthusiasm over the blogosphere or in print.

Here is my point;

  • We are NOT entitled to win anything, nor is any other EPL or CL team,
  • There is NO team who is vastly superior to any other team in the EPL or CL, and therefore unbeatable,
  • Upsets and disappointments are a fundamental and unavoidable part of life, including Football,
  • We, like other great teams, can struggle against poor referee decisions, serious rotational injuries, bad days at the office (off days),
  • Our psychological strength and self-confidence moves like a tide, in and out, depending on many of the above elements,
  • Our fans can make or break us and especially our away fans who consistently are our 12th man,
  • We are a well-run Club and have been cited by UEFA as an example of how clubs should be run financially and administratively,
  • Success comes in cycles and the cycle seems to be swinging our way, despite setbacks like our CL exit,
  • Everything depends on achieving team balance, harmony and chemistry and if Arsene is a master of anything, he is a master of that combination,
  • We have the right mix of players, youth, experience and confidence to achieve success and glory, the stronger we are in support of our Club, the stronger that success will be.

Wenger, our players, our trophies, the Emirates, the aaa, our supporters, our lives and possessions are simply loaned to us for a very short time in the scheme of things and we NEED to appreciate what we have before it is taken back or the cycle swings again. For my part, I am here for the rollercoaster ride that is the Arsenal, and as they say it is the journey, not the destination that is important.


The books

52 Replies to “Everything is borrowed: success is temporary”

  1. Arsenal will be our dream team come next season! But we have to add more creative defenders and strikers who are non-pushoverd

  2. What is this a football web-site or poetry corner?

    I bet the author sits in the corporate seats down at the Emirates next to his mate Rupert. They enjoy nothing more than discussing the offside rule whilst eating a foie gras salad.

  3. Zoon, what team do you support? Or do you bash everybody equally?

    Happy Birthday Hector!

  4. Just out of curiosity, I have heard so many people (aaa) talk about having a new (World Class) GK, CB, DM, CF and whatever they feel Arsenal need to become a complete team. I wonder who these players are that;

    1. Are no more needed by their clubs hence can easily be bought
    2. Are not overpriced ie, a GK for £50m or DM for £80m or CF for £100m
    3. Are not one season wonders who has track records in their performances
    4. Are not in such an age that they have reached their peek and can’t produced for more than a year or 2.

    Please don’t mention the likes of Cavani, Falcao or Jackson Martinez cos they are all over 28yrs and can not produce for over a season or 2 if you remove their bedding period

    Or Paul Pogba priced over £80m or his likes

    I am not saying there are not good players out there with the quality to improve Arsenal. They are there but we need to know that if we show desperation, competition starts and prices go up. Our best players this season (Ozil, Sanchez and Cazorla) were not purchased that way. Moreover, we may need to look inwards cos for some of our problems we already have solutions in our books (Coquelin and Bellerin). Also buy already made stars make bringing youth players into the 1st team more difficult.

  5. @ ZOON It might be worthwhile to learn a little bit about our contributors before you slag them off.

    Good article.

    I might add: Even a well run business/club can have disasters so let us enjoy The Arsenal while it lasts.

  6. @ ZOON It might be worthwhile to learn a little bit about our contributors before you slag them off.

    Good article.

    I might add: Even a well run business/club can have disasters so let us enjoy The Arsenal while it lasts.

  7. IMHO, it’s not what Arsenal need to succeed tomorrow or whenever, it’s the moments of enjoyment we get out of the club TODAY, right now. Right now I am enjoying the replay of the Monaco second leg, and my strongest memory is of the dressing room after the FA cup win last year. Rosicky and Ozil celebrating their silverware. Call me crazy but it’s those moments that matter to me, not what might happen tomorrow. Tomorrow hasn’t gotten here yet, and we can’t change the past, so all we have is The Arsenal and right now. Hmmm….back to lurking…

  8. Given the shit we’ve been getting for being knocked out of the CL at the Round of 16 stage for the last 5 years with tag lines such as, ‘It’s not good enough for a Club like Arsenal’ and the ‘now they’ve been spending all this money there’s no excuse’ Bollocks, I thought I’d see just how we compare to there little Darlings Liverpool, who seem to be exempt from any criticism no matter what.

    Here’s how our performances compare in the PL, CL, FA Cup and League Cup over the last 6 seasons:









    * Denotes occasions Liverpool exceeded Arsenal in that particular competition in that particular season.

    With this seasons final PL and FA Cup positions still to be decided, you will note that out of the other 22 possible opportunities Liverpool out performed Arsenal on just FOUR occasions.

    Also you may note with interest the following Net spend over these seasons:

    Liverpool…£120 Million

    Arsenal….. £70 Million

    The only teams to out perform us over that duration are Chelsea and City, whom we all know have been operating on unlimited budgets, and Manchester United who have a Net spend of around £230 Million over the last 3 years alone.

    So why is it that Arsenal Get all this abuse, year after year, whilst Liverpool (and Spurs), despite massively inferior achievements to us, are still hailed and admired as much as ever?

    The way the media abuse Arsenal, Wenger, the players, and us the fans, day after day, week after week, year after year, whilst others are left alone completely, is nothing short of a fucking disgrace.

  9. I don’t feel that disappointed we are out of the Champions League although I am sure Wenger would love to win it before he retires. The most encouraging thing was the quality of performance in Monaco. We looked the real deal and the team must have confidence from that going forward. Let us hope they repeat the quality in the next few games.

  10. When I saw comment no 3 I chose to look through the comments from the previous three articles, to see writers’ pattern. I smiled.

    The best thing about my undertakings was discovering a comment from BFM!
    It seems to me he wrote that for you, ZaaaN. It even mentions your natural habitat. Enjoy:


    So, exactly what is ZaaaN bringing to UA’s table? Nowt. Ban it!

  11. @rantetta
    Well spotted and this idiot Zaan says he supports Arsenal!!!!
    After watching Chelseas disgusting exit last week, followed by Citys defeat last night we must concentrate on our performance.
    We were fantastic and it was so reassuring to see every player up for it. If we play like that for the rest of the season, I cannot see what team will beat us.
    By the way, saw a headline stating “Pears” Morgan wants Wenger out and a second rate Giroud out as well. This comment from a man who couldn’t tell fake photographs from the real thing (By not being able to do this he brought our troops into disrespect). I refuse to listen to that moron Adrian Durham, but I just know he agreed with him. If only these two so called “experts” did their homework like jambug has done. But that would mean using your brain and using true facts and figures. I doubt these two muppets can even read and write properly.

  12. Ken lock

    Thanks for your appreciation.

    The thing is my friend, you have to WANT to know the facts, before you will make the effort to research the facts.

    These muppets have absolutely no interest what so ever in facts.

  13. Everton, our last remaining team in Europe ‘Crash’ out 5-2(6-4) to Dynamo Kiev.

    1st time in 20 years there will be no English Club in the QF’s Cups. of the European

    Arguably it was Arsenal that at least put up the best fight before exiting, and got the closest to progression.

    Scant consolation I know, but just making the point because is strange that it’s us that, as usual that get by far the most shit.

    Ok Chelsea got some serious flak, but that was more to do with there odious behaviour rather than there ‘footballing’ failures.

  14. Oh, I forgot to mention, we built a rather impressive new £400 Million Stadium over that period as well !!!

  15. Ken Lock
    Thank you. Piss Morgan summed up.

    That’s a telling chart and article to go with it. It’s amazing, this Liverlove, except, maybe not. Hardly new, is it? Yet another team who can kick Arsenal 5 times before a foul is noted.

    Have a look across the sea to hear a couple of thoughts about the PSG CL tie:


    I read somewhere that Arsenal are the only British team to have won a match in the CL round of 16?
    Credit where it’s due? Nah, we’re not having any of that!

    What a fantastic match that was in Monaco. Such mirrors of our home game against AC a couple of years ago, inc. the bussa inspired ref allowing all kinds of things in front of the king. I can’t wait to watch it again.

  16. Jambug, cracking stuff

    Barney Ronay (who I’m not prepared to hail as a saviour just yet, but have to give credit to for his most recent piece) shocked us all with a pretty good article yesterday, and what you put together there is a demonstration of what we’d see if there was a single journalist actually attacking the mountains of Arsenal-crap which spew daily’s from Mount Bullshit/our media.

    If that journalist existed, however, they wouldn’t be able to take such liberties in the first place. Durham ,for instance, could be KO’D for good if anyone with a proper media profile decided to call him on his gibberish.

    finally, gotta say it’s a text-book example of how much statistics can add to, or even are vital to, a good argument. Bravo.

  17. Temporary. How many female managers have Arsenal had? Possibly not enough. At the moment they don’t, but they do have a player/coach. It seems that the only WSL club with a female manager is Chelsea. So, we get a BBC article about the lack of female managers in WSL (or top flight in general). This smells like something Moaninho set up. The article does point to an earlier BBC article, which is about Shelley Kerr, who was a manager at Arsenal.


    In the article, Emma Hayes (manager at Chelsea) also comes out and says that the women’s game is better for watching, because it is more technical. She also mentions diving, but I don’t think that is a worthy comment. There are people here with better English than me, is the term non sequitor?

    Not far (30 miles) from where I went to high school, was a community largely made of German’s from the Sudeten. I played football with the children/grandchildren of the immigrants. One of the girls in my grade, was on the Canadian National team for at least 7 years, and later went on to manage women’s team at the university level. At one point, I lived with 3 of her brothers. Everyone played football. Go watch the ladies play, you’ll learn something.

    And if you see a British Army guy there chanting sexist comments, take a picture of the idiot to send to the newspaper, and slap him in the head.

  18. @jambug

    Wonder what would happen if you sent your stats into “dunkin doughnut durham” at talksport? Do you think he would have the balls to discuss it?
    Nah, he would rather crawl up Mourinho’s or Brendan’s backside.
    This cretin does not desrve to be called a sports journalist, so anyone who contributes to Untold got an idea how we can turn the tables on this muppet and his crony “kodak Pears morgan”?

  19. Jambug, You’re the fucking man, What you wrote at 5:59 P.M. was the motherfucking bomb. Your words should be etched in stone and then cracked over the sick twisted AAA and the cowardly media’s empty skulls. Leave them dazed and bloodied in the gutter like the fucking scumbags they are. The media whores love them some Brendan Rodgers and Liverpool, The last couple of years they have been practically sucking his cock. What have Rodgers ever won or accomplished in the last couple of years. The only thing he and Liverpool managed to do is blow the league last year. The same with that eye-gouging little Portuguese douche bag from Chelsea, The media has been blowing his tiny little dick for a decade. Now they’re all saying it would be so grand of an achievement if Van Gaal can get Man. Utd in the top four. How many times the media whores derided us about there is no trophy for fourth place. FUCKING UNBELIEVABLE, That is why I have said the media are nothing but a bunch of MOTHERFUCKING COCKSUCKERS.

  20. ‘Arsenal are only as good as their last failure’.

    An amusing summing up of the views of the doom merchants in the media and their followers on the blogs, Don!

  21. Good man Bill, tell it like you mean it!
    I’m sure dear old Herbert probably couldn’t have said it better himself. Well, come to think of it, perhaps he might!

  22. Zoon…..’What is this a football web-site or poetry corner?’ Football IS poetry expressed on a 110×80 metre pitch when played by AFC. I know you failed that subject in elementary school (almost certainly your apex of educational achievement) but take my word for it, writing for UA is poetic AND rewarding, unlike your pitiful existence in doom and gloom land.

    ‘I bet the author sits in the corporate seats down at the Emirates next to his mate Rupert. They enjoy nothing more than discussing the offside rule whilst eating a foie gras salad.’ By the way the correct term is paté de foie gras salad!

    Do you actually KNOW the offside rule? I know it perfectly and have, unlike you actually applied it at the highest level. I only wish I could do as you so ignorantly described….but I am in North America and unable to afford the weekly trip to the Emirates or wherever, just like you!
    I do know where you sit during the games. On your mom’s couch, eating chips,drinking cheap beer and bemoaning how useless anyone unfit to wear the shirt is (everyone including Wenger), while talking to your pecker, which refuses to acknowledge you and remains as limp as your prose and comments on UA.

  23. Bill from Manhattan…….so eloquently put but do remember that this is a family website and Zoon will have to go to his mommy and have his ears and eyes washed out for reading and listening to ‘bad words’! Why his ears? Because he has to read the comments aloud and repeat them a few times so he can actually understand 50% of them on the 4th try.

  24. Well done Bill. It is proper to use the only language that the media & aaa deserve.

    Up the Arsenal!

  25. for all the things that Ian Wright says, I liked what he had to say about Ozil.

    “I like him very much. Everything he does has a purpose to it. I dont understand why he is underfire all the time.”

    Maybe not the exact words, but the summary of it.

  26. @ Nonny regarding world class players, if i may add.

    We sign world class players provided. Provided they are at the right age. Right pricetag. And the right fit for the team.

    Have we not signed Ozil. Alexis. They are at the right age, price and are perfect fit for this ARSENAL team.

    Is it worth paying above 50 million for Cavani or Falcao. I think no.

  27. Arsenal 13. I like the away goal rule. Brings a bit of excitement and the away team tends to play attacking. I feel that that if its taken away, the teams will just play for draws and try to get to penalties. Just because of the stakes involved.

  28. On a different note, manures best player has been given the the job to select EPL refs!!!! Did that have anything to do with their FA cup exit?

  29. @Gouresh.

    Not scraped. Mr Wenger says, as in case of Monaco result, we scored 2 away goals and had a cleansheet too. Hence the result over 180 mins was a 3-3 draw. Mr Wenger says away goals should be considered after extratime.

    This rule doesnt encourage attacking display, remember Chelsea this season??

  30. gouresh
    March 20, 2015 at 5:58 am

    It takes talent to cheat, It takes stupidity to ignore cheats. Selective vision is no excuse for a set of officials with radio communication. The radio is not openly broadcast for a reason (it allows freedom for cheats).

    Managers/coaches are not allowed freedom of expression by the FA – it ensures freedom for the FA to cheat. Appointment of a monopoly PGMOL (note Limited liability) is cheating the game that the FA are supposed to protect.

  31. Rules are not an issue for me. Cheating Referees are. Do you think Alexis dived or was it a penalty? Should the referee apologise for getting the incident wrong and should the yellow card be rescinded?

  32. @ Don – A very big LIKE from me . It also reminded me of this oft told tale –

    Once upon a time there was a rich King who had four wives.
    He loved the 4th wife the most and adorned her with rich robes and treated her to the finest of delicacies. He gave her nothing but the best.
    He also loved the 3rd wife very much and was always showing her off to neighboring kingdoms. However, he feared that one day she would leave him for another.
    He also loved his 2nd wife. She was his confidant, and was always kind, considerate and patient with him. Whenever the King faced a problem, he could confide in her, and she would help him get through the difficult times.

    The King’s 1st wife was a very loyal partner and had made great contributions in maintaining his wealth and kingdom. However, he did not love the first wife. Although she loved him deeply, he hardly took notice of her! One day, the King fell ill and he knew his time was short. He thought of his luxurious life and wondered, “I ! now have four wives with me, but when I die, I’ll be all alone.

    “Thus, he asked the 4th wife, “I have loved you the most, endowed you with the finest clothing and showered great care over you. Now that I’m dying, will you follow me and keep me company?”

    “No way!”, replied the 4th wife, and she walked away without another word. Her answer cut like a sharp knife right into his heart.

    The sad King then asked the 3rd wife, “I have loved you all my life. Now that I’m dying, will you follow me and keep me company?” “No!”, replied the 3rd wife. “Life is too good! When you die, I’m going to remarry!” His heart sank and turned cold.

    He then asked the 2nd wife, “I have always turned to you for help and you’ve always been there for me. When I die, will you follow me and keep me company?” “I’m sorry, I can’t help you out this time!”, replied the 2nd wife. “At the very most, I can only send you to your grave.” Her answer came like a bolt of lightning, and the King was devastated.

    Then a voice called out: “I’ll leave with you and follow you no matter where you go.” The King looked up, and there was his first wife. She was so skinny as she suffered from malnutrition and neglect. Greatly grieved, the King said, “I should have taken much better care of you when I had the chance!”

    In truth, we all have 4 wives in our lives: Our 4th wife is our… body.No matter how much time and effort we lavish in making it look good, it will leave us when we die.

    Our 3rd wife is our… possessions, status and wealth. When we die, it will all go to others.

    Our 2nd wife is our… family and friends. No matter how much they have been there for us, the furthest they can stay by us is up to the grave.

    And our 1st wife is our…Soul. Often neglected in pursuit of wealth, power and pleasures of the world.
    However, our Soul is the only thing that will follow us wherever we go.

  33. OH , THE IRISH !

    • Reilly went ON trial for armed robbery. The jury foreman came out and announced, “Not guilty.”
    “That’s grand!” shouted Reilly. “Does that mean I can keep the money?”

    • Finnegin: ​”​My wife has a terrible habit of staying up ’til two o’clock in the morning. I can’t break her of it.
    ​”​Keenan: ​”​What on earth is she doin’ at that time?​”
    ​Finnegin: ​”Waitin’ for me to come home.​”​

    • Murphy told Quinn that his wife was driving him to drink.
    Quinn thinks he’s very lucky because his own wife makes him walk.

    • The late Bishop Sheen stated that the reason the Irish fight so often among themselves is that they’re always assured of having a worthy opponent.

    • An American lawyer asked, “Paddy, why is it that whenever you ask an Irishman a question, he answers with another question?”
    “Who told you that?” asked Paddy.

    • Question – Why are Irish jokes so simple?
    Answer – So the English can understand them.

    • Irish lass customer: “Could I be trying on that dress in the window?”
    Shopkeeper: “I’d prefer that you use the dressing room.”

    • Mrs. Feeney shouted from the kitchen, “Is that you I hear spittin’ in the vase on the mantle piece?”
    “No,” said himself, “but I’m gettin’ closer all the time.”

    • Q. What do you call an Irishman who knows how to control a wife?
    A. A bachelor.

    • “O’Ryan,” asked the druggist, “did that mudpack I gave you improve your wife’s appearance?”
    “It did surely,” replied O’Ryan, “but it keeps fallin’ off!”

    • Slaney phoned the maternity ward at the hospital. “Quick!” he said. “Send an ambulance, my wife is goin’ to have a baby!”
    “Tell me, is this her first baby?” the intern asked.
    “No, this is her husband, Kevin, speakin’.”

    • Did you hear about the Irish newlyweds who sat up all night on their honeymoon waiting for their sexual relations to arrive?

    • My mother wanted me to be a priest. Can you imagine giving up your sex life and then once a week people come in to tell you the details and highlights of theirs?

  34. Menace.
    The referee in the European Cup Final 0f 2006 sent off Lehmann and in doing so denied Giuly a perfectly good goal for Barcelona. That decision meant Barcelona were only 16 minutes from a 1-0 defeat. It meant that Pires had to be sacrificed to bring on Almunia, and Bergkamp never got onto the pitch even for a cameo role. The two best teams in Europe at the time actually got to the Final and the referee ruined it. After the game he apologised; he said he had made a mistake. So that’s all right then?
    I don’t want apologies from referees; I want video technology used from next season so that the fourth official can notify the referee exactly what happened at the time.
    If the referee had been informed that Alexis had simulated he would have restarted the game with a free kick to Monaco. If he had been informed that it was a foul it would be a penalty to Arsenal. Simple!!
    2006: still leaves a bad taste.


    Thanks. Eloquently put as usual.

    You know what? When I decided to look into those statistics I thought it would show a distinct contrast in Arsenals favour, but even I couldn’t believe to what extent that contrast was.

    When you add to Liverpool’s CV there failure to win a title for over TWENTY FIVE YEARS, it really does highlight just how far Liverpool have fallen.

    If Liverpool and Spurs fail to win a trophy this season that will mean at best(assuming they win something next season) it will be:


    Since last trophy = 4 Years (League Cup.)

    Since last title = 26 Years.

    They will have won just ONE trophy (LC) in the last 10 years.


    Since last trophy = 8 Years (League Cup).

    Since Last title = 54 Years.

    They will have won just ONE trophy (LC) in the last 25years.

    Respectively these statistics are bad at best, utterly humiliating at worst.

    And the media have the liberty to have a go at us.

    Shameful, premeditated, anti Arsenal agenda shown up for the sham it is.

    Our Media are a fucking disgrace.

  36. Yes, we’re getting closer to the center of the scales, finding our balance.

    The pendulum swing is approaching it’s center position and as it nears it’s center we rise as before to enjoy our time until the swing takes us to the other side again.

    and all those who deem to use the language of expletives when talking to others who speak another language, as here on Untold, wonder why they get such a response.

  38. And to those who say we should be measuring our success against Manchester United, Chelsea and Manchester City, I ask Why?

    There is un undeniable correlation between money spent on Players and Trophies won.

    The correlation is clear and undeniable.

    This is not only born out by the expenditures/Trophy correlation at the aforementioned Clubs, but with anomalies such as Blackburn, who enjoyed a period of respectively massive investment, and Leeds, who although as far as I recall didn’t win anything, massively over achieved in Europe and the PL, during a period of massive financial investment, which by the way, ultimately bankrupted them.( A lesson for all, no?).

    So, as sad as some may think it is, money is at the root of success. Not only at the root, but it is arguable that it is in fact ‘the be and end all’ to success

    If anyone has evidence to disprove this I would be interested to see it.

    The fact is, once you have established this correlation between money and success, and you then look at the amount of money that has been spent by Manchester United, Chelsea and Manchester City, compared to everyone else over the last 9 years, you simply have to put those 3 Clubs in an ‘elite’ group of there own.

    Over the last 10 years City and Chelsea have spent between 5 and 10 times as much on players than those outside the ‘elite’ group. Manchester United, though not as much, have still been spending 4 to 5 times as much.

    Then we have those chasing the ‘elite’ group. I put in this group, Arsenal, Liverpool and Spurs. Out of these, Liverpool are quite easily the 4th biggest spenders, then, following Arsenals last 2 years spending, we and Spurs are equal(ish) 5th, be it a fair way behind.

    But this chasing group are financially so far behind the ‘Elite’ that it is utterly un realistic to expect them to match them, performance wise, in any way, shape, or form.

    This is what is called ‘The bigger Picture’

    Despite accusations to the contrary, all us AKB’s do know Wenger isn’t perfect.

    We know he’s made some poor signings, but so did Fergie as does Mourhino, Pelligini, Rodgers etc etc.

    The massive thing you have to take in to account with all this though is that Wenger was under a remit whereby he had to work on a virtually ‘break even’ budget.

    To achieve this Wenger had to take gambles.

    He took gambles on youngsters with potential. It’s not an exact science. Some work out, some don’t. He had to take gambles on ‘rough diamonds’. Not the ready made article but a potential gem. Again, not an exact science. Some shine, some don’t. He wanted to develop and introduce academy players. A long process requiring extreme patience and expert judgement. Very tricky and a bit hit and miss.

    By and large Wenger did all the above brilliantly. No NOT perfectly, but I contest better than anyone else could of come near to doing.

    The truth is Wenger couldn’t afford the ‘ready made’ article. They where always beyond his remit.

    Then you have the impact all this had on the players he did attain, produce and develop.

    He struggled to keep the diamonds that shone. Firstly these guys are not blind. They could see the restrictions that Wenger was working under and realised just how difficult it could be to win things at Arsenal during this period of Austerity. Align that to the financial lures put there way and an exodus was inevitable.

    There was also the problem of when to cash in on your assets. Even if players wanted to stay, could Wenger afford to allow there ‘sell on’ value to diminish? He needed a return. This meant he had to sell some experienced players that he perhaps would of liked to of kept in order to mentor the youngsters. To keep experience amongst the inexperienced, but he was between a rock and a hard place. At the end of the day balancing the books was the deciding factor. It must of been driving Wenger made.

    But even with all this Wenger did what he had to do. He kept us in the ‘honey pot’ that is the CL.

    Despite claims to the contrary, Wenger did keep us ‘competitive’, but alas, for many reasons, of which some are highlighted above, we just kept coming up short. A story of oh so near, yet so far.

    All I know is, and going back to my original point, we got a lot closer, a lot more times than the likes of Liverpool and Spurs, who ARE the 2 teams we should realistically be judged against over these last 9 years.

  39. @Jambug, you may have noticed that Liverpool won the CL ten years ago. Not bad considering I thought that team back then inferior to ours at the time. They also won the FA Cup in 2006 so perhaps you should get your facts straight as it’s plainly untrue that Liverpool have only won one trophy in ten years.

    I don’t think that Pool or Spurs are the darlings of the press and even if they are so what? Who actually gives a shit what journalists write?

    Considering that neither Pool or Spurs have had a manager equal to Wenger in the last ten years they haven’t done too badly.

  40. jambug, fine form the last couple of days.

    What you say about correlation to money is of course spot on. Wish I had the stats handy to back it up but I have read them in a few places in the past, and it might be as much as 9/10 ths of a position is determined by money. The figure is certainly very high.

    Most interesting is that, though transfer fees very strongly determine where you will place, higher by a significant margin is wages. This becomes extremely interesting when you consider Wenger appears to have made the choice to sacrifice some of what could be spent on transfer fees in order to get as close as possible to the others on wages.

    It could be that there wasn’t even a choice- i.e that it was abundantly clear that if the wages were any lower than they were, the task of trying to retain players would be hopeless. In which case he would still deserve credit for…not caving in basically, and making purchases which would ensure a shortfall in the budget and no manoeuvre to increase any wages/ retain players, without exceeding the budget.

    All of it this is of course meaningless, and maybe even cause for anger, for people who either refuse to even contemplate such a thing as an actual budget, or who do, but then instantly forget that they agree with the principle, and make demands irreconcilable with one. The entire media fall into one of the two groups.

    Unfortunately, whether by design or not, our not being as far behind in wages during that period as we did in net transfer expenditure, is a phenomenally handy thing for the ignorant and the devious.

    We weren’t that far behind ,for instance, and dortmund, and Athletico Madrid, and Liverpool nearly won…blah…blah. Even better, as far as wages are concerned, is that it is very easy to use the wrong figures, overestimating ours, underestimating rivals, or even to just plain invent false ones (as that chump did earlier in the season in a very deliberate fashion).

    Not something you can really get away with when it comes to transfer fees, though I’m sure there’s also a fair bit of fiddling which goes on there.

    Of course, the wage policy left plenty of room for idiots to jump in and obsess about how much we paid Bendtner and others, while showing- and these supposed Arsenal fans- zero interest in any comparison between our rivals. ‘Oh, don’t tell me how much Torres cost them! I’m an Arsenal fan and I’m ambitious and besides Chelsea are winning things! There’s no such things as bad mistakes if you win things! Nor good work if you don’t! Are you happy with fourth? don’t you want to win!! What about paying Ryo Miyachi 20 grand a week? How can you justify that’

    But there’s not a lot you can do about someone who doesn’t even try putting themselves into the shoes of decision-makers as they made those decisions, i.e living forward and without access to the future; and, instead, analyses everything safely from their desk at hindsight towers, never troubling themselves to find out that expert predictors in all fields, especially finance, have surprisingly low levels of success, as they themselves no doubt would also if they were ever to show the gumption and curiosity to try keep track of how successful their own predictions are.

  41. Laughing lizard

    Ok 9 years. Sorry.

    Hardly affects the point I was making does it?

    Which is that we have been slaughtered in the media relentlessly since we went just a COUPLE of years without a trophy, and it has continued relentlessly ever since. 3 years, 4 years, 5 years. Every single time we played.

    Even now we have won a cup we get it.

    What I’m asking is why us? Why not Liverpool and Spurs. These Clubs have had equally baron years and yet it never gets mentioned.

    You say:

    “Considering that neither Pool or Spurs have had a manager equal to Wenger in the last ten years they haven’t done too badly.”

    What? Are you serious?

    25 years without a title and one LC in 9 years is clearly a terrible failure on Liverpool’s part and yet you think it’s ok. Perhaps that’s why it hardly ever gets a mention. Perhaps the Media feel the same.

    Spurs is even worse and you think they’ve done ok as well. Perhaps that’s why they get nothing like our abuse. Perhaps the media feel the same about them too.

    But Why. They hardly cut us the same slack do they?

    Do you cut Arsenal the same slack you and the media do those 2?

    Because it is those 2 Clubs that in reality are our direct competitors these last 9 years.

    Not the ‘elite’ that have been operating on £50 £50 and £30 Million annual net spends respectively.

    You also say:”

    “I don’t think that Pool or Spurs are the darlings of the press and even if they are so what?”

    Really? What planet have you been on.

    “Who actually gives a shit what journalists write?”

    I do, and I’ll tell you why. Like it or not what the press says affects people. The media do not reflect opinion, they influence opinion. They have dislodged Governments.

    I have said on here many times that it is the media that run our referees. They are there Judge, Jury and executioner. If the media say the ref was good, he was good. If the media say the ref was bad he was bad.

    It was the media whom helped Fergie to manage the Referees to his will. It was they that allowed him to use there pages to tell the referee how to referee there next game.

    The media have, over the years, created an environment where it is accepted that Arsenal are a bunch of wimps who don’t like it up ’em. They have enabled teams to kick us off the park without fear of being held to account. They have enabled the Shawcross’s and Taylor’s of this World to break legs with impunity.

    If you truly don’t believe the Media has had a massive influence over PL Referees and how they have been able to stitch us up relentlessly these last few years that’s up to you, but I think that makes you very naïve.

    By the way, you seem very keen to big up Liverpool. Are you a Liverpool fan?

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