Why do Arsenal fans criticise Arsenal players so much?

by Tony Attwood

It’s been an Arsenal thing for almost a century: pick one of your own players and get at him.  Herbert Chapman railed against the “boo-boys” in the late 1920s and early 1930s, we had it again in the 1970s, it happened with players under George Graham (I remember Martin Hayes getting booed even in the season when he was our top scorer).  And there was Eboue,

This week it is Elneny, recently it has been Xhaka, it has gone on against Ozil, Ramsey, Ospina, Cech, Mertesacker, Giroud, Iwobi, Alexis…  We have also had it with the manager as well over a very long period of time.

And I wonder what the point is.

Does it influence the manager and make him more likely to kick out the player who is nominated as not worthy of the shirt?  I suspect not, because many of those players are all still at the club although it is true some left because they couldn’t take it any more.

Does it make the player improve?  Hard to imagine why it should.  Most people when getting blunt and/or abusive criticism respond by denying there is a problem or by criticising the person who is offering the criticism or by moving away from it.

So if it doesn’t get the player out, and doesn’t help the player improve his performance what does it do?

Well, the only three things left are the fact that it might have no effect or it might make the player perform worse than he was before, or it is done because supporters hear commentators on the media criticise, and they want to be like them.   Certainly for most players the natural instinct goes and he starts trying too hard or shying away from taking any risks for fear of more barracking.

I have seen some say that they criticised certain players and as a result these players did leave and that was good for the club.  But it is a bit of a tough one to prove since in the end everyone leaves the club.

But what one can say for sure is that criticising a player of the team you support most of the time doesn’t actually help the player or the team.  So again the question is, why do people who call themselves supporters do it?

It can be argued that most supporters who do this actually realise that it neither helps the player nor (most of the time) does it get the player removed.  But what it does do is make the supporter feel empowered and important, often when that supporter has nothing else in his life to make him feel empowered or important.

So how come some people in the ground give abuse when it rarely has much effect, while many don’t?  Here are some reasons

1:  Certainly for people whose early history consisted of receiving abuse themselves and/or seeing others abused can make abuse seem to be the normal condition of life for these people. They understand the terror of being the victim and so use that power now they have it.

2: Abusive behaviour can result from mental health issues or disorders. For example, someone with anger management issues, or a drinking or drug problem may easily get out of control.

3: Others find it impossible to have empathy with those they see.  Indeed given the riches footballers earn increasing numbers of people find it hard to empathise with those who earn more in three hours than they do all year.

4: Because those around them do it.  The herd and tribe instinct can be strong and if the group sees abuse as a sign of manliness others will join in.

5: Some people like to be in charge. In an effort to gain or remain in control of others, they utilize inefficient means of dominance such as bullying or intimidation.

6: They believe that there are no boundaries in football, and everything is acceptable and somehow it is manly to hand out abuse.

7: Some people are afraid of their own powerlessness and their own inability to influence the world.  Hence they use abuse as it is all they have left.

8: They hear the criticism on the radio, read it in the papers, see it on social media hear it on TV, so it becomes ok for them to do.

So there are many reasons, but none of them help the club or the players.  Indeed there appears to be two different types of Arsenal fans now.  Those who give lifelong support to the club and its players no matter what, and those who feel they have a right to support a successful team, and if the club is not successful (however they define success) they feel no obligation to support the team.

Certainly, from all the psychological studies of what happens to people who receive abuse,  we can say that if there was no abuse in the ground the players would play better.  Thus abusers are part of the failure of Arsenal to win more trophies.   They just won’t admit it.

Thus to answer the question, “what the point of abusing a member of the team one supports…” it is to make the abuser feel better just for a moment.  Trouble is, like alcohol, any boost you get quickly drains away and abusers seem to need more each time to get that same feeling of relief from their powerlessness.



56 Replies to “Why do Arsenal fans criticise Arsenal players so much?”

  1. I’ve been of the exact same opinion since I became an Arsenal supporter.
    The abuse is detrimental.. it’s cost Arsenal much over the years and many players spirits have been crushed by it.

  2. Never been able to understand it. After all there are 11 opposition and the pigmob officials to abuse, why pick on our own.

  3. I have been a supporter of arsenal for 75 years and bloody wingers on tv are a disgrace why don’t you go and support fulham then you can really injoy yourselfs sorry fullham but you know what I mean

  4. but where i grew up watching the local team the supporters always seemed to have it in for one player did not matter what he did was always critised someone else could make the same play and be applauded

  5. I was just about to post this on the previous article , when I spotted this new one , and it seems more apt here . And probably be helpful to those who want to be helped !

    How Complaining Rewires Your Brain for Negativity (And How to Break the Habit)
    By Annie Wood


    I quite like the way the complainers are classified , and most of the regulars here will spot the usual suspects immediately .

    – The Venter is a “dissatisfied person who doesn’t want to hear solutions,
    however brilliant.”

    – the Sympathy Seekers, the I got it worse than you do, and the habitual everything sucks folks.

    – The Chronic Complainers, those living in a state of complaint…

    To this list , I would add the following –

    – The good ole days delusional complainers – this includes the ‘George Graham was God brigade’ .

    – Arsenal are not the only club being f*cked over point outers @ the Whataboutismers .

    Am sure there will be more contributions from our regulars .

  6. Gervinho was another AFC player that packed his bags and took off to Italy due to all the abuse from the ‘Boo Boys’. I think that some of them have not really grown up into adults. Those of them who think they are adults may not have not had the ‘Express Train’ of life hit them at full speed without a buffer to soften the blow. Hence they can ‘give’ it to others not ever knowing how much it hurts.

  7. Jeez people, people criticise people (both positive and negative) when they have a strong emotional attachment to them as in this case, to football players.

    It’s just life and there is no other reason than letting them know they are doing well or that they need to buck up.

    People function on emotions and that’s the way it is. Suspect are those who bury their emotions to present a “positive” face at all times. This is indeed fake.

    The ups and downs of life is what makes it livable and being able to enjoy the good times when they come and moan about the bad times when they come.

    Remember balance makes a (well dammit,) balanced person for real.

  8. Para

    “Suspect are those who bury their emotions to present a “positive” face at all times.”

    There is a big difference between ‘feeling’ disappointed that a player has had a bad game, or evenhaving a bad period, and shouting/posting abuse at the guy.

    Surely that’s the point.

    It’s nothing to do with supressing emotion, it’s about how you express it.

    As an analogy, if your son was struggling at school do you really think constantly telling him he’s an idiot, or a failure will do him any good, or do you think that help and support would be a better option ?

  9. a) Emotional identification with the club.
    b) Observational hindsight, and instant historical revisionism all based on the idea “they are the one/and know what to do”,even though their observations are relative ( ie X is shit,when in fact they are on of the very very few that make it to the top) and they themselves dont have that level of physics or mental agility to play at that top level.
    c) Through emotional identification, when the team lose, this creates shame and depression. The next stage for the mind is to dig itself out of the pit of depressive/shaming thought,this leads to anger. Anger is of course based on fear, so we can see that fear is at the bottom of it all: “Im not good enough as my team lost, therefore its so and sos fault”.During the trophy drought, these people craved the FAC as a sign of virtue and ability, once this was firmly established as a level reached, then the next stage of jealousy and inadequacy kicks in: the league/Champions league. And so on and so on.
    No-one is ever fulfilled with a) identitifaction with the external, or ironically( in the end?) the internal.But we can accept the system of suffering?

    RIP Jimmy Armfield.

  10. Having said all of that, our home form this season has been pretty good, as it was last season. It’s our away form that has been problematic, and everyone knows that there are certain away grounds where the abuse the Arsenal players get is surely far worse than anything they’d hear at the Emirates, so maybe it isn’t fair to equate the problem completely to arsenal fans.

  11. It’ll be difficult to persuade the Boo boys who are mostly of the AAA trend Arsenal supporters to stop booing a Gunner or Gunners during matches when the reasons for their booing the Gunner or Gunners are there glaring to see in the Gunner or the Gunners.

    In my own case, I’ve never been to Highbury or the Emirates Stadium to watch Arsenal playing. Neither have I ever been to any of their away matches at any Stadium to watch them playing. I mostly rely on TV to watch Arsenal games. I am a global Arsenal supporter and my passion to see Arsenal win games and Titles is insatiable. I always want to see Arsenal win and be at the top. But I also know there was acute money shortage at the club until now as it appears to be easing which has hindered the signings of top class players by the club as against it rival club sides who seems to have unlimited transfer kitty to do players recruitment almost in every transfer window. Thus hindering Arsenal from dominating the Premier League. But save now when some money looks to becoming available at the club to do some top class recruitment to boost the winning capacity of the team to make the club compete favourably against tough opposition teams in the PL. So, even if I would have booed despite that I don’t belong to the AOBs Arsenal supporters and I don’t go to the stadia to watch Arsenal, I don’t know if I would have booed. But booing has never been part of me as I’ve never done it before when I locally watched matches in the stadium. I think booing and abusing has become a culture of a certain group of Arsenal supporters who delights in doing it when the chance to do it presented it’s self to them. But on my own part, I do criticize any Gunner that I noticed hasn’t played well but should have played better for Arsenal in games. More especially if the Gunner is comfortable staying in the comfort zone at the club instead of to come out from there to work very hard in training and games to improve on the quality of his game for Arsenal.

  12. Criticising your own is very daft to put it mildly. As somebody said you’ve 11 opposition players (And ref if it’s in the EPL) to pick on so why boo your own.

    Anyway on a diff note I am not happy with the way Alexis conducted his business. Publicly agitating for a move isn’t the way to do it. He could learn a thing or two from Ozil, has been very quiet and professional through it all. Even if Ozil leaves end of season I’ll have nothing but respect for the guy, just like I did for players such as Flamini, Rosicky, Podolski, Gilberto,etc. Afraid Alexis might have done an RvP and damaged the way he’ll be remembered, not very fondly. One should remain thoroughly professional right till the end.

    p/s oh and he went for the money, if it were CL and trophies then City offer better prospects. Guardiola also alluded to this (the money bit). Am I also the only one thinking utd paid us some money plus a player, rather than a straight swap? I don’t see much sense in us letting a player who was going for nothing in 6 months leave for nothing 6 months early. Yes we got Mkhitaryan but highly doubt we were even looking at him to begin with..

  13. Very wise article Tony. I’ve shared it on Facebook. Mind you, the way Facebook is organised I’ve no idea how many people will get to read it!

  14. “As an analogy, if your son was struggling at school do you really think constantly telling him he’s an idiot, or a failure will do him any good, or do you think that help and support would be a better option ?”

    Whilst I agree with best part of your analogy, I don’t think it can be totally applied at any footbal club in the world. Simply, a football fan is not a parent to the club he supports. There is literally no legal obligations between them outside the rights and obligations a fan has as a member, shareholder or a ticket owner. A parent and a child, however, have mutual obligations, usually from the moment of the child’s birth (or even before).

    When it comes to the part where this analogy stands, here are things we should take into account.

    If a child is struggling at school, there is a number of possible reasons for that:

    a) he might have been given unfair treatment by the ones who judge his knowledge,

    b) he might have been struggling to understand the material he was supposed to learn,

    c) he might have been struggling to focus on the material due to non-school things (i.e. love issues, family issues),

    d) he might have been told of his mistakes but he hasn’t either

    d1) put enough work to correct them or

    d2) found the way to correct them,

    e) all factors above (and others I haven’t mentioned) combined, with unknown ratio between them.

    If we focus on any of the factors above while neglecting the others, we won’t help a child.

    For instance, it’s one thing to say that our defending is awful without taking all evidences into account and without giving any contructive critics at all. For instance, I’ve noticed for the third time that ugly practice when three of our defenders go their left side to chase the player with the ball while leaving the middle of the defence unprotected. Photos of those formations can be found at the internet and our coaches should do extra work with our defenders in order to remove that from our game which might be a problem as we have a hectic schedule this season due to Europa League, League Cup and World Cup.

    I reckon that defensive overload of our left side happens because Mustafi and Holding (I think two of them are usually doing that) want to help inexperienced Ainsley Maitland-Niles to avoid him being one-on-one with a skillful winger.

    All players need support but also coaches have to work harder to fix that issues.

  15. I think Mhki was an AFC target during the 2015-16 summer window. So, AFC had wanted to sign him before this swap of him for Alexis took place between Arsenal and Man Utd. But whether a bid was submitted to sing him by Arsenal and didn’t go through during that summer window is what I can’t say. And let’s not forget that Le Boss was keen on having a replacement for Sanchez before he’ll allow him to go Man City last summer and the status quo appears to be in place at the onset of this winter window of which Man City is not prepared to honour. Hence their pulling out of the deal after their ridiculous £20m bidding for Alexis was rejected by Arsenal .Can you imagine that!

  16. When professionals perform below what is expected of them they hear it from the ones they work for. Most fans pay what they can sometimes barely afford to support a team (especially Arsenal FC)Therefore when a supporter spends his or her hard earned money only to see one or more players not putting in a shift, which is the basic minimum requirement at any team they should have a go at that player or players because at that point their investment is not profitable. No one expects a team to win every game but you do expect the players to play to their potential. You should take this silly question to top coaches like Alex Ferguson, but be careful he just might toss a boot at you.

  17. If Alexis needs work permit changing before completing his move to Man Utd, But will Mkhitaryan also needs same before completing his own move to Arsenal? Complicating players swapping transfer.

  18. Samuel, they are both non-EU players and do need their “new” work permits ratified.

  19. To the article, all I can say is QED – Quod earth demonstrandum; (Latin for: “thus it has been demonstrated.”. I refer to the conclusions of the psycho-analysis of what appears to play on the minds of those who think by abusing players of the club they support (and I agree such behaviour is prevalent with some Arsenal fans), they somehow, get closure or relief from their own frustrations.

    Trouble is once they latch onto a certain player, that player can never do anything right. As well as Xhaka and Elneny played on Saturday, there were still some who poo-pooed their showing, even booing. It was hard to believe.

  20. While I agree with you with the need to support the club, i disagree on the issue of critizing a player. A player that could not cope because he was criticized is not matured enough to play at professional level. There is two ways to see criticism. One is drop into your shell and throw in the towel and the other is to brace up like a man and confront the issue. There is nothing you can do to satisfy everybody but you must keep improving.

    Should i buy arsenal players a drink when they lose matches they should not or play like kids. Wenger may cuddle them, some will not. We have a proverb in my place that says that the friend that says i would have told you is not a good friend.

    Some Arsenal performance does not deserve any commendation and those criticism is needed to get the club to act. When the fans keep quiet, they think everything is alright. Even in politics, we take leaders to the stand and challenge their decision, it is left for him to defend it. Challenging him does not make me unpatriotic, in fact, it is patriotism to do that.

    When they tell you that Arsenal players are pampered, you may not believe it until such players leave the club, go somewhere else and they are not afforded the luxury of time for improvement that arsenal affords them.

  21. I remember watch Leeds last match before being relegated, there was this iconic image of a young boy with Leeds for life written on his bare skin. I said to myself that is a fan. Through thick and thin. Pointing out faults and praising people is good but to condemn even when there is no merit is a shame. No one seems to see refs and media lambast our team only when our players avoid silly tackles to safe their careers do we criticize them( they are weaklings). A shame when Spurs with no trophy and only been second one season are praised by same arsenal fans and media when we do not see our own achievements. FA Cup trophies, community shield and finishing 2nd 2 seasons ago

  22. I got half way through a response, identifying obvious flaws in the arguments of people who dispute the basis of Tony’s hypothesis. I gave up. Some people are just beyond help and will find a way of arguing black is white irrespective of the validity or available evidence to support their argument.

    Thank you Tony for maintaining a rational view in an irrational world.

  23. Why is it a silly question? I’ve asked why people do it, and tried to answer that question. You’ve written about something quite different.

  24. Obiora, again I feel you are dealing with a quite different issue. I am asking why people do it, when it is self-evident that it never helps the team. I am sorry that is not clear.

  25. I hope you do not mind if I change the subject for a moment.

    Does anyone know whether the player who recently scored a winning goal for his club with his hand, sorry I do not remember who he was or the club, been disciplined by the EPL?

  26. Tony as much as I agree that booing players probably doesn’t help, I can’t ignore the double standards. You write booing articles everyday about every thing other than arsenal, do you do this because it makes you feel very important and you have nothing else in your life that makes you feel important?

  27. And Obiora is telling you that your conclusion that it never helps is faulty. I should have thought that was self evident

  28. Paddy, I’m not sure there is a direct link there. I have written at some length, especially in the recent articles concerning 10 years of Untold as to why I set up Untold and why I write on the themes I select. To simplify (because I don’t want to repeat all that) the aim is to cover topics that are not covered generally, or to cover topics that are covered, but to approach them from a different angle.

    You might disagree of course, but my view is that Untold offers a different perspective and I have presented evidence over the years and in the recent series how some of the themes I have chosen have had an impact – or at least have been ahead of the game in terms of action being taken. The work on refereeing standards, the analysis of why England does poorly in many tournaments, the possibility of Type III match fixing being used, the change in the law in Switzerland ahead of the raid on Fifa, the child trafficking issues… and some other topics such as the fact that the FA has still seemingly not handed over the money given for those affected by the Grenfell Tower disaster via the Community Shield, which are yet to be resolved.

    If you see what I write as being articles that have no effect and change no one’s mind, then that is of course your perception. But for the moment I cling to the view that some of the ideas explored on Untold have indeed made a positive difference by helping to bring the issue further into focus.

  29. Well we just see it in different ways.
    Obiora said
    those criticism is needed to get the club to act. When the fans keep quiet, they think everything is alright

    I disagree. I think the manager knows perfectly well when things are not right, and so do the players. But I don’t think that booing the players helps them improve.
    But anyway, if you don’t see that point, fair enough. I know I’m often fairly convoluted in my explanations.

  30. An interesting article on which I have some professional experience. I suspect I may Be duplicating some of the insightful comments already made.
    There are loud mouthed and often hostile abusers who are best avoided at football and in life.
    At the other end of the spectrum are very nice, kind people who have a condition that is not generally apparent, but is relieved by negative critical complaining (shouting abuse) when highly emotionally
    stressed. Such as when their team is losing. It’s unfortunate, but it is a condition which is very difficult if not impossible to control, though it is something that seems to diminish with age.

  31. I would have thought every team has its proportion of doubters/knockers etc not just Arsenal supporters and probably just part of the old 80/20 rule. I have no problem with the points made in the article but the implication that it is an exclusively Arsenal issue is rather far fetched, at least that is how I interpreted it.

  32. Nitram
    Of course shouting abuse is not the way, but we all have to learn that during our upbringing, and some have not learnt that yet.

    Its all a part of their path in learning and i hope that they will in time learn it as most of us have done too.

    Some are just still in that type of mindset and most will emerge a better person we hope, but i have learnt that each has to follow their own path and where it takes them.

    As Luscious lisa says “it is something that seems to diminish with age”.

  33. Tony wonderful stuff, it’s interesting that even if you make a general comment and it touches a nerve because one is self aware of their own tendencies, they immediately go into denial, avoidance or straight up delusion!

    Tony I believe you are evolving my friend.

    So Alexis sold out, but somewhere between an Henry and RVP. This is a wonderful deal and Mikhi is over the moon and Instagram shows him trying to rip the badge off.

    Alexis posts everything true, except that he left for money and to save face.

    I think United collect 0 trophies this year. The Gooner affect, but he gets loads of love from fans of the AFC, wishing him luck is a step too far though.

    He says he left for same reasons as Henry, that was below the belt.

    He won’t win CL next season and every other competition entered, but he might play out of position and end up in the MLS in a seasons and a half.

    Now Aubameyang, Gazidis is doing it. The player Ian sorted and he’s the right man for the money side.

    Time to go supernova, Nacho is back and clearly rested. So Cohen can wait. Niles is improving by the game.

    Lets pick up a CB and DM at World Cup and GK during the group stages or season closes. Meyer in.

    I feel sorry for Alexis, not the club. Wenger out, we just did crazy good business.

    This time the Jan window pays us, Arsene finish what you started!

    IWIT – Mesut?!?!

    Giroud should make the switch, and we should do the deals separately. But he should have other offers as he said.

    Just in time for Chelsea, haha Conte, be worried. Debut goal, odds please.

    He won’t fit in at united, but he will guarantee she get payyyyd!

    I can’t fault him, it’s brilliant business by club and player.

  34. There are no mental health issues which become less prevalent with age, in fact they are more likely to become more apparent and bring about the early onset of Alzheimer’s, dementia, Parkinson’s or Huntingdon’s!

    If one considers become animated over one passion a coping mechanism, that isn’t also bizarrely inaccurate.

    What these all are; are in fact very unhealthy coping mechanisms, when the only route to mental imancipation is to tackle the route cause of the problem, directly. The only catalyst for this is someone’s reaching such a low that disparity drives survival or a trigger event such as a distinct change in circumstance or environment or influence that they are able to perceive the flawed nature of their behaviour and seek change.

    One may intrinsically be kind or well mannered, however, one is more so who the act as, than the previous state they were in, or who they could be. Trust me I have been incredibly patient.

    It’s like a handle that cries, attention, then vague comments which suggest understanding or experience which is not demonstrated in any manner.

    There is constructive criticism, but their is persona! You boo me, I improve if o was playing poorly as a result of some deficiency I can control. But if you play football, you know sometimes you hit a slump and you begin to think and try and nothing is natural and the only thing os to go back to basics and wait for a goal or a littleness flow to return. Sometimes you get the placebo and it seems like it’s over and it really isn’t. Conte on Morata, Jose on Lukaku. – Obiara

    On the other hand, some characters are delicate and need nurturing and support, but o cannot see how boooing ever helps.

    Not flowing – Olay – not moving – in chorus – move, being greedy – well instead of shoot, pass! And when 60,000 of you can orchestrate this level of assistance. Then we go ahead! But Obiara states “as they say”, lost me there!

    Tony, made this site to give away to truth against the tide, I am greatful, why do you come to raise poorly thought out opinion, write the guardian, mail, go away, basically. You are not fit to wear the shirt a shirt I said to a guy who only wore his shirt today because we won 4-1. The first two people who spoke to him both intimates that same opinion and o agreed and told him, to take it off as he wasn’t fit to wear it!

    Alexis delivered until this season, his standard so high, the drop seemed mangnificent! But I remember well, what he delivered. And even in his departure he delivered. I cannot say anything bad, bar the comment on Henry and giving away possession repeatedly from corners a few games back.

    I think Alexis came foul of his own mental weaknesses, the not passing, the poverty from youth. And I am hurt for him, RVP didn’t hurt more than this because we made 1,000+ profit and even I could see he was done. 6montha later and he’s grey.

    Henry comparison, Henry left his daughter after cheating on his wife and killed his career and almost stated he regretted it, were it. It for pride.

    In a work day full of nutters the same man is crazy. The king and the cursed well!

    Tony do not waste your time arguing with fools, I will do likewise. This was one of your best articles, looking at player fan relationship and psychology in sport and it relationship with the fan/fanatic and those separated from reality.

    Who chooses a team because they win, Juventus, because of the players, Arsenal because of my Stepfather, who forged a wonderful mind, yet I see how that process had in parts to be undone, I designed myself and find myself not few and far between.

    Now I love Arsenal, and almost not one reason I do, exists without Arsene, as if the two were fates Byblos namesake!

    I came for the football – now Arsenal have an Armenian, let’s get an Alegerian and a Gabonese.

    A Brit l, we don’t have an Italian do we, a notoriously racist culture, let’s get one. And then add a Brit in goal as is sensible.

    Lets go Supernova, £150,000 or £500,000, no brainier. Alexis one summer off unhappy, then Copa America, burnout! He had to not have a knee jerk reaction to that catastrophe.

    People often regress to the age of significant trauma, Alexis appears to have regressed some years and Wenger handled this well, if he couldn’t manage this one better, it couldn’t Bec done.

  35. khitaryan will be available to play in Arsenal’s Premier League game at Swansea on January 30 as he is cup-tied for the club’s Carabao Cup semi-final second leg against Chelsea on Wednesday.



    That’s a line up, interesting bench.

    Mikhitaryan will certainly debuts at Swansea, should score if he is on it, his footballing ability is not in question and I prefer the statements of intent. Moving to Arsenal a dream.

    As of 2011 Most of Armenians are Christians (94.8%) and members of Armenia’s own church, the Armenian Apostolic Church.

    If you swap Iwobi for Mikhi (we are literally taking the) what you have isn’t total footballing side,? With a 9 at the tip of its spear.

    We don’t even know how we will score goals, but we will.

    If we actually make sure Aubameyang gets over the line all o can say is, another wide attacker, preferably both feet (Meyer. Mahrez.

    Debouchy, jettison that shady Frenchman. We need to decide on Giroud and Welbeck. Personally it seems the possibility of a deal is only strengthened by any arrival of CF.

    Goals for sale, get your hot goals. All the players we are selling give you goals. Even Debouchy, lol.

    The new team will have to be on the ball now in working to assess offers. A bonus is that any new brokerages is affected by the change in backroom staff. New position.

    It is likely that we will continue to be active in the January window with further departures and acquisitions. We are changing the interpretation of the windows. If he does this now wffectively by offsetting with departures now. We will have a strong squad shortly.

    That bench without Welbeck, Giroud, Mikhi for now and without the inclusion of Mertersacher or Debouchy is ok provided your first IX do their job. Nelson is capable of hurting you and Ramsey would have to be the other and that is a good second option and cover, with both Elneny and Xhaka starting and Monreal included.

    And your third being either a defensive cover or forward.

    Whoever doesn’t make the 18 will be telling, I would like Akpom on the beach for the 4 cup game, a game and he comes into no matter what. Crashed a car, reward him. Focus!!

    It is however, likely Welbeck will make the bench, having been an adequate sub,

    I fully expect the team to win the cup tie with Chelsea. A footballing side has a much better chance of managing that game. I do believe the collective football intelligence of our team will outweigh the some of the physical attributes in that Chelsea side even without the Armenian.

    With the Gabonese in that bench strengthens exponentially, still light a WF playmaker with ability to beat his man and make quick progress in transition.

    Selling three players and acquiring two would be prefwreable in therms of Danny, Debouchy and Giroud.

    Campbel will relish the WC and doing his duties in the Int for nation at the coming World Cup.

    Will he mature enough, to make good value or maybe stay, I feel he invasages himself elsewhere and he may decide to showcase his credentials after a great show last time around. Either way Arsenal are surely likely to benefit.

    Brokering deals within the sphere of normailty this January; does make us unique of all the top clubs.

    If you apply only maths and consider the strength of our hand and positional cover even with those players, you have to say a CF would make them redundantly and with Gazidis on his way.

    We all wait on baited breath, around the World the news is Alexis Sanchez left with 6 months on his contract, but Arsenal signed that guy from Dortmund, with the name you can’t spell. They are after that black guy from Dortmund, let’s sign Reus with Pulusic joining Bayern. Stay fit.

    If you ask me you buy Mahrez next.£30 million. Chelsea aren’t spending and United willl have to sell. Spurs have to do their own thing again. City are considering the Market, with Pep having to chose very carefully. Liverpool lost something and can’t get their man early. Klopp is in a sticky one like Pep. Form has dipped, but rumbled City so, maybe stick? Burnout!!!! 🙂 what does he add? Everyone knows you hotness a hole burning in your pocket. 😀

    Well down below, we did a deal with the club to do business with, the Hammers and S’hampton are in the market for goals, Danny?

    On the other hand we are going to be so depleted that really the only option is to buy.

    A signing structure dictated by contracts and players variable age. Master stroke, surely partly by his design, with a little random thrown in.

  36. http://www.skysports.com/football/news/11667/11218802/alexis-sanchez-says-manchester-united-are-the-biggest-club-in-england

    Well this interview speaks volumes.

    Including link to where Higgingbottom assesses all of how he doesn’t fit in and plays out of position or takes out someone. Martial is performing, Lingaard draws him out of position, does he create more than Matta in behind, and really you drop Lukaku, the best he could do is go two up top and then who Martial?

  37. ‘ Confident walking is more successful than confused running . Follow no one but learn from everyone .’

  38. Art

    When it comes to penalties we are being screwed by referees left right and centre.

    To use that well worn phrase ‘I know what I see with my own eyes’, is evidence of that. Ah, but is it evidence? No it’s not. The stats are the evidence.

    And the stats clearly show that to be the case.

    But here’s the important thing, but something the this pathetic MIrror article completely ignores, it’s not just this season that this happens, but year on year. As has in fact been shown many times here on untold.

    If this season was a solitary anomaly then perhaps they would have a point. But as we know it’s not.

    If the Mirror really gave any thought at all to giving a fair and balanced article they would of at least tried to put this seasons penalty stats into some kind of context. This is not a one off. As I said, this goes on year in year out.

    Where is there balance in looking at the ‘soft’ nature of so many of those given against us versus the ‘stone wallers’ we haven’t been awarded?

    Stoke? WBA? United? Watford? Leicester?

    So what do the mirror do? They turn that ‘evidence’ on it’s head to conclude that it is not in fact the diabolical refereeing that’s the problem but our own fault because, wait for it, we haven’t got any ‘leaders’.

    You couldn’t make this shit up, but the sad thing is they do.

  39. Hello Tony,

    I have actually followed Untold for many years now, going to 11 s, from 2006 even though i don’t comment. I knew the reason which you said you set up untold which is to counter the negatives that ditched out to Arsenal everyday.

    Negativity is bad, a lot of Arsenal sites are full of that, some of them i don’t like visiting. However, there is a frame of mind i see here that says support the club, leave the Manager and the board to do what is right for the club. While this may sound nice, i don’t think it help. Supporting a club is to me is like democracy to me. The fact that I support Obama as US President does not mean i support all the actions he took as President, and if I disagree with him on some of them and i feel that it is not in the best interest of the country, i should be able to raise placard and draw the attention of the authorities to it, if after drawing their attention either by protesting to White House or to Congress, they still went ahead with that decision, i will back down, to me, the decision must have gone down well with majority.

    The beauty of democracy is that we can challenge decisions. It is only in autocracy that every decision of the King is right. The problem with the negative players is that they boo the players during the match, i will not do that, i will stand behind the team (not the player) but after the match, i voice my displeasure but i will not do that during the match. The reason is that our people say that you do not pursue a rat when your house is on fire. After the match, we can go back to our issues at hand.

    Why do arsenal fans criticize their players? It is frustration with the team, when your team is not doing well, you are not happy and an unhappy man complains. Watching how depleted the squad is and being more than 20 points below the league leaders does not give joy, it does not. It pains arsenal squad that we are not competing, yes we usually mention Chelsea, Mancity and ManUtd and the money they spent on transfer and conclude that we cannot compete with them. Sure enough, we cannot, but it is not down to money, i think it is down to the squad and the man in charge of the squad is usually the first to be hold responsible. Is he doing enough, to him yes but the evidence from the squad may suggest otherwise. The fact the Leicester City won the league in England, Athletic Madrid in Spain, Monaco and Giroud former club in France shows why money is needed to win the league, it not always down to that. I have a lot of Arsenal fans and they voice that opinion. They call me Wenger Till Death, whether it is a compliment or not i don’t know but Arsenal and the club needs to know the feeling of the fans, to say they don’t need that to act is not true. Before ManUTd trashed us 8:2 on Old Trafford some years ago, Wenger said we don’t need any new signing, after the trashing, we signed about 6 to 8 players.

    Sorry for the long write up, the essence of what i am saying is that democracy thrive when it is challenged. It is only autocracy that is not challenge. Support the team but voice your opinion, that is the way to perfect things.


  40. obiora echezona

    “Why do arsenal fans criticize their players? It is frustration with the team, when your team is not doing well, you are not happy and an unhappy man complains”

    That would be all well and good if they only complained at these ‘relatively’ bad moments, but they don’t.

    You may of noticed over the last 5 years we’ve won 3 Fa Cups, 3 Community shields and finished 2nd 3rd 4th 4th and 5th.

    Yet did the moaning stop?

    Like hell it did, and that’s the point.

    Yes we all want to go that one step further and win the PL or CL but THAT is very difficult given the finances available at our direct rivals and across Europe.

    But given the above successes can we honestly be judged to of been the failures we are made out to be by the media, ex players and fans alike? I don’t think so.

    On the other hand Liverpool and Spurs have won diddly squat and they do not have there fans, ex players and media on there backs to anything like the same extent do they?

    Why is that?

  41. Nitram

    I agree with you that Liverpool and Spurs are not criticize like Arsenal. Maybe because we don’t follow them or they don’t rate Arsenal the same level they rate them. The problem i think is that they started with trophless seasons, after we won FA cups, they moved to years without Premier League Cup.

    But they are still fans, they want the best for the club, their attitude may be wrong but their goal is same with ours.

  42. And I would like to add, does that supposition suggest one becomes depressed if they support Swansea m! Measure your expectations. I know we could have invested reasonably and earlier. But I suspect fate will bring me a team I would choose as no other shortly, with the success to match, having been integral to the fair future state of football.

    I change nothing on foresight!

  43. Criticism is good if it is said in a respectful way. Society would not advance without it.

    The problem in my view is that some of the Arsenal fan base are extremely disrespectful in their criticism of the team when they lose. However, you don’t hear them congratulate the team when they win. These people in my opinion should support another club that is up to their standards.

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