Chelsea’s technical director goes but Arsenal remain the masters of football chaos.

By Tony Attwood

Arsenal, as we well know, is left in disarray, tatters or chaos (sometime all three) when a player who was “on the radar”, “according to reports” says (allegedly) that he has no intention of going to London, not even for a shopping trip.

The club is also in chaos when thousands of supporters of Cologne turn up uninvited.

And even when a transfer that has been made up by a bunch of journalists down the pub doesn’t happen.  This summer we had headlines such as “Arsenal ‘chaos’ to have impact on transfer, just over €40m, ‘fans on the warpath’,” (and that was about just one event – the “transfer” of Bellerin to Barcelona which, well, somehow, didn’t actually happen and apparently never was going to happen).

Indeed do you remember from just last summer, not rumours that Bellerin might leave, but rather that the deal was done.

And all those and tens of thousands of others followed from “Arsene Wenger Carries on Regardless as Arsenal Stars Cause Chaos in Background,” That was the Bleacher Report in March.  That was about “reports of training ground bust-ups and rising complaints in the background of the Emirates Stadium.”

And that is against the general background of chaos, such as this just two months ago, “Arsenal’s chaos behind closed doors leaves the fans confused and looking for answers.”

So if a member of the senior management team at the club were to leave, despite being asked to stay then a new set of words and phrases would have to be created.  Disorder, confusion, muddle, and jumble would be just the start.  Comparisons to the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party, and notions of a stuck record (from the days when records got stuck), would be just the starting points.

So I went a searching for any comparable attitude in the media, but found little.  “Chelsea’s pendulum of chaos” was there, but it was a story from last season.  Otherwise the waters were fairly calm.  “Michael Emenalo has shocked Chelsea by stepping down from his position as technical director, despite a plea from Roman Abramovich to stay,” also came up.   Even when we had some chaos  it was mentioned alongside a win as with “Chaos as Chelsea signal intent with win at Man City”  – a story which came via Reuters.

And there were some rumours of discontent as in,  “The Nigerian worked behind the scenes at Stamford Bridge in a transfer-policy position that was often mystifying to the club’s fans.”

Plus the obligatory “exclusive” even though everyone had the story which further played down any suggestion of something being not quite right in the club.  “It is understood Emenalo made his decision during the summer, but delayed his departure to suit Chelsea and cause the minimum amount of upheaval.”  So not really a story then.  All peace and quiet.  Just one man moving on.

There is the occasional hint that Emenalo was at odds with Conte, but even this is pretty much played down, with statements to the effect that Emenalo worked with Conte identifying transfer targets, providing the necessary data to help the process along.   “He also oversaw the hugely successful academy at Cobham Training Centre.”

Emenalo has however apparently “often been blamed for transfer failures” such as the refusal of Ross Barkley and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain to join the club, the fact that Chelsea didn’t get Lukaku while Fernando Llorente picked Tottenham, and Juventus wing-back Alex Sandro never made the transfer.

Another issue that has led to criticism, is that Chelsea have sold too many players, including talented young players.   Nathan Ake and Nathaniel Chalobah are mentioned as going even though Emenalo wanted both to stay.

Strangely (and this I think is the interesting point) Emenalo was blamed for the removal of Ray Wilkins when he worked under Carlo Ancelotti in 2010, and yet this was something where Emenalo was undoubtedly working for the good of the club, and most certainly should not have suffered any recriminations or abuse.

Wilkins was a one man disaster zone due to excessive drinking and Emenalo moving Wilkins on when he did, saved Chelsea from a huge level of embarrassment.  After a series of “incidents” Wilkins was caught on a very serious drink driving offence in 2012 and disqualified for two years when the case came to court in March 2103 and fined £2,000.

But then later in the same year he was found drunk in charge of a car again, but this time without a licence (the two years not having passed since the previous offence) and so this time he has lost his licence for another three years, had to pay £4000 and was given a 12-month community order, which in effect meant a criminal record.

So getting Mr Wilkins out of Chelsea was a service to the club, as revealed by the fact that even the criminal record and community service didn’t calm the Chelsea man down and he was caught drink driving again in July last year.  His third offence, and second of driving while banned.  This time he was given a suspended prison sentence, ordered him to do another 140 hours’ unpaid work and banned him from driving for yet another two years.

Perhaps the abuse that Emenalo got over the Wilkins affair made him think that it really wasn’t worth it.  He has three young sons, and maybe he feels that being with them a little more is a better deal than being in the hot house, an waiting for the next Wilkins situation to come along.

But somehow I still wonder.  If Emenalo had been at Arsenal, surely we’d have more chaos chaos chaos than Chelsea are getting.  Why is that?


42 Replies to “Chelsea’s technical director goes but Arsenal remain the masters of football chaos.”

  1. All is perfect at Arsenal. I don’t know how we can be criticised . Mr. Wenger will be recommended for sainthood on his retirement . Mr. Kroenke is a kind American benefactor and Sir Chips is a paragon of virtue and good governance . How dare we be criticised by lesser clubs ?

  2. Even Alan Smith has joined in sticking the boot in. ( evening standard )
    Seems everyone is having a go its turning into a national sport Arsenal hating . Never mind soon be Xmas

  3. Arsenal getting a free hearing in the MSM is as likely as Cory Evans’ wife being invited to Bucharest on a freebie by the Romanian government

  4. What about Ian Wright? He says Wenger is making excuses for talking about a soft penalty and an offside goal. Legends ??

  5. Henry Rootless…..the only thing that is perfect is your idiotic and witless humour and your feeble attempt at sarcasm, which like you, flopped completely. Your pointless attempt at blogging on UA is a lesson why you should put your brain in gear before opening, in your case, your computer to write on UA..

  6. Omgarsenal
    Lovely to hear from you and to know that on this blog there are serious minded people like yourself who are guardians of the integrity of the club.
    Sadly this blog isn’t helping Arsenal in the broadest terms. It is so orientated towards approving everything that the management of the club do and to imagining conspiracy theories among referees, the Premier League and the world of football at large, that the real decline of the club and the likelihood of the decay not being halted is being ignored.
    I wrote facetiously wondering if anyone would mistake it for serious comment. It wouldn’t have surprised me if they had .
    UA will be taken seriously by serious, committed Arsenal fans if it allies it’s superb historical research and clear love for the club with a willingness to accept that the club can be criticised constructively by those who love it when the situation requires it.

  7. I wonder why “conspiracy theories” are so disliked, after all, everything is just a theory until proven, and many conspiracies have been proven over and over and over again.

  8. OT: FIFA and costs has an article about Autralia versus Peru World Cup playoff which is interesting.

    Apparently, FIFA expects to pay about $150,000 to Australia (or Peru) to fly in either direction. Australia went full custom, and payed $900,000 to get the team back early. Maybe FIFA only covers some of the cost, but you would expect that FIFA’s expected payout for “poorer” nations is most of the bill.

    Australia is paying (about) $750,000 extra, for a plane 25% full or less, that has been arranged a long time ago. That is all profit to Quantus.

    But Australia is expecing a HUGE difference in the ability of Peru to play in the return leg, because they can’t afford the extra $750,000 to do something similar.

  9. Henry Root
    I know where you’re coming from.?
    Unfortunately one or two others don’t see the irony of the situation.

  10. Henry Root
    I also know where your coming from..but this is a site where there cant be any criticism of the club, team and manager no matter how much of a shambles the club is becoming.The true fans like the grammar king omgarsenal and walter menace will use conspiracy theorys and referees to deflect the downward spiral our club is making.

  11. Lewis it is always good to read the comments of someone like yourself who knows more about football than Arsene Wenger.

  12. Think our thoughts and attention should turn to the biggest game of the season so far the NLD sure is going to be a tough one to call .

    If ever a game was needed to unite the fans and spur the team on for better things . This surely is the one

  13. Col
    I dont have to know as much as Wenger about football to see what a mess our club has become from top to bottom.I can see it,the majority of fans can see it, ,shareholders can see it ,the press can see it,the pundits can see it, most blogs and message boards can see it and ex players and legends of the club can see it.Im sure Arsene Wenger ,stan kronke and Ivan Gazidis can see it .The only difference is that they are making millions out of it!!!!

  14. It is all the fault of those who called for : we want our Arsenal back. They got it back. A big giant sleeping as has been for many periods in its history till it wakes up and dominates again for a few years and then falls asleep again. This is our Arsenal. Always has been en probably always will be. This is our Arsenal.
    Mind you winning 3 FA cups in 4 years is not really sleeping…. 😉

  15. lewis,
    you poor man, you must be suffering! Take my advice…when you’ve arrived at a point where you feel you can no longer support anyone or anything at Arsenal, take a big swallow, pick up your courage and go support something else. You’ll feel all the better for it 🙂

  16. The NLD will be another referee induced loss

    I’m on the way to watch Arsenal v Sunderland in WSL2 ko 14:00 at Borehamwood


  17. Such negativity even before a ball has been kicked hope we haven’t got 50,000 + supporters in the stadium with the same attitude or fear the worst
    Why is Untold becoming so negative I thought this was the domain of LG

  18. Walter raises a very good point which is at the centre of the debate about progress. Wenger transformed the consistency of the team in terms of league position but there is a huge discrepancy between the first ten years and the last ten years. The great man has lost his mojo but is still to be respected but the rest of the people who run the club don’t deserve that honour.

  19. Surely no entity in the history of mankind has faced these many conspiracies from all quarters, like Arsenal under Wenger and Stan are facing.

    The entire world wants to take down Arsenal 🙁

  20. Arsenal_62
    …and that’s just the people on this planet. Or do they just come out on Sundays??

  21. surely others must have noticed the flies gathering around this new Jax shitty. The new shape of Leon the apologist.

  22. Lewis,

    well visibly, you don’t get it.
    The owner owns the club. He does as he wants.
    Like you do with your car, your dog, your house. It is yours.
    And the club is earning money and getting more valuable by the year.
    Worse, the Emirates has a waiting list and people are just queueing up to take over the seats abandonned by the gazillions of fans who have had enough and do not wish to come anymore.

    All this because the team, the coach, the organisation are just crap and useless,know less about football, game strategy, player psychology, and all things related football then the average fan.

    Wonder what you would be saing it AFC was making losses and going bankrupt. Maybe just happy to say good riddance to the owner, the staff and the coach. A true real supporter you are. Let me remind you : supporter comes from support.

    And if you can honestly say the refereeing at City was fair and square, well, as you say : you see it with your own expert eyes. Happy for you

  23. When opportunity knocks –

    A man with a gun goes to the bank and demands money . Once he is given the money, he turns to a customer and asks , ” Did you see me rob this bank ?”

    The man says , “Yes , I did .”

    The robber shoots him in the head.

    He then turns to a couple and asks the man , “Did you see me rob this bank ?”

    The man replies , “No sir , but my wife did ….!”

  24. Chris i wondered how long you could rant for before the mention about referees??
    I understand you have to find excuses for our demise and you will find anything to put the blame on apart from the glaringly obvious.For years the excuse was the stadium build,then injuries,then the excuse there are no players who would improve us,and now its referees who are conspiring to stop us winning.I understand we cannot compete financially with City and Utd but the reality is that we dont want to .All we want to do is hoard the cash and make our manager ,ceo and owner even richer.Have you asked yourself why our only 2 world class players want to leave??The same reason Van persie left ,they can see the lack of ambition at the club.
    You may be happy that the true fans are stopping going to games. And that they are being replaced by the rich tourist fans who are only there for a day out and havent got a scooby do about football.A bit like you,Walter menace and omgarsenal..

  25. lewis
    I’d say that most of the true (match going supporters) are sticking with it. It’s the distance ‘fans’ who’ve never been to a game and never will (like your mate omgarsenal) and the other guy (KomicKid) from Malaysia, and who tell real cash payers how to support the club who don’t see the irony of their actions.
    I take your point about rich tourists etc., but at least they have some match day knowledge.
    And yes, the owners don’t give a shit.
    And before anyone makes accusations, I’m an ex match goer, which qualifies me to give an opinion on this ‘supporter’ subject.

  26. Lewis,

    leaving beacuse of lack of ambition ? You are living in a far gone time (and I sometimes do regret that time). Just looking at examples of last summer’s Mercato, do you truly believe Neymar left barcelona, the all winning team to go to PSG because he wanted a more ambitious team ? That the Ox left Arsenal to be a bit-piece player at Pool! because they have more ambitions ? That Sanchez would go to City to win whatever they can purchase ?

    No, the one element there again is money and financial ambitions – those of the players and of the agents. At least this is how I see it. Sure ambitions play a role, but in face of tens of millions what worth are they ? Only the super rich clubs can build a team from the marketplace.

    As for the refs, I’d say you are on par with them and see what you want. Funny that the british press was all over the romanian ref who gave the swiss a non-existent penalty worth a World Cup qualification yet stay put about outrageous ref decisions in the PL. Ask the Northern Irish if it all evens out in the end.

  27. Refereeing might have cost Arsenal a point against Manchester City, but I refuse to believe that year after year Arsene will win the league with 114 points unless the big bad PGMOL is out there to take down Arsenal. This excuse cannot run for 12 – 13 years at a stretch. The management has no ambition; Stan is content in treating Arsenal as the North London Bank while our economist professor acts like a wall street banker.

  28. Chris if we are an ambitious club why did we post a profit in the transfer window when we have over £100 million to spend??Fleetwood town spent more than us.The only 2 explanations i can think of is either the club dont want to spend it or the manager thought his squad is good enough to win the league with what hes got.If its the latter then why is the club under achieving and why arent we doing whats needed to compete with the best..


    1. Innovative
    2. Preliminary
    3. Proliferation
    4. Cinnamon


    1. Specificity
    2. Anti-constitutionalistically
    3. Passive-aggressive disorder
    4. Transubstantiate


    1. No thanks, I’m married.
    2. Nope, no more booze for me!
    3. Sorry, but you’re not really my type.
    4. No thanks, I’m not hungry.
    5. I’m not interested in fighting you.
    6. Thank you, but I won’t make any attempt to dance. I have no coordination and would hate to look like a real Fool!
    7. Oh no, I must be going home now as I have to work in the morning.

    *Words damn easy to say when drunk*
    1. I love you.
    2. Will you marry me.

  30. A wife comes home late one night and quietly opens the door to her bedroom.
    From under the blanket, she sees four legs instead of just her husband’s two.
    She reaches for a baseball bat and starts hitting the blanket as hard as she can.
    Once she’s done, she goes to the kitchen to have a drink. As she enters, she sees her husband there, reading a magazine.
    He says, “Hi darling, your parents have come to visit us, so I let them stay in our bedroom. Did you say hello?”

  31. Lewis,

    well, maybe we ought to have proposed Schalke 50 million for Kolasinac even as he was for free. Or maybe pay Lyon 100 million for Lacazette when he was to be had cheaper ?
    And offered all outgoing players to anyone.
    The funny thing is that most outgoing players were players that the blogosphere was describing as worthless and Arsenal was able to sell them.
    Not to mention the Ox.

    Maybe we ought to pay parents of young players coming into the first team a few millions as well. So all in all, we’d be a club spending and not earning ? And you’d feel better ?

    So what is the issue at hand here ? That we have managed this one ok and because the club did not throw money at any player the management is stupid ?

    And do you really believe that because fans want player A or B, the club can just pick up the phone, say a number and the guy gets there ?!?

    Then, it’s true, on fantasy Football, it probably goes like this.

    And while we are at it, it is interesting to see that Tottenham who are not outspending us are now considered a smart club doing what Arsenal has done for years and getting lauded for it, manager and owner all together.

    Bias is bias is bias. No way to change that.

  32. Chris we offered quite a few of our players but nobody wanted giroud,mustafi,walcott,wilshire ,chambers and debuchy.And spurs at the moment have a far better team and manager so they dont need to spend as much as of those managers is excelling the other is going backwards.

  33. Well we agree to disagree. If AFC had done their job right they’d have had material on every coach and owner of the people and could have blackmailed whoever they wanted to purchase one of their player. And the players you name really are useless. As well as their manager.

    You can still get seats at WHL. Visibly they are this PL’s next wonder team and will break all records.
    As for Arsenal, they were stupid enough to hire a french coach more then 20 years ago and what has it brought them ? Being a second class, no steel, losing and whining team unable to win a trophy.

    You are so right. No way to argue against your logic.

  34. I think I started this off. For record I’ve supported Arsenal for 59years and have had a season ticket or tickets fir over 25 years and am a Bondhokder so I claim the right to make the odd comment about the club I llove

  35. Henry Root – you say the club is in decline for the last 15 years. Just look at the share price & tell us when the price last dropped.

    Your support is not in question. Your logic of football quality is. Prior to Wenger, even in Wenger’s poorest years, there was nothing to compare in quality of football. The Bertie Mee success (69 – 71) though great could not hold a candle to Wengers football. Surprising that nobody ever complains about the sale of Kennedy, Brady & later Stapleton who were all amongst the best of our team when sold. Wengers players were sold because of financial constraints but very few realise that.

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