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September 2018
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“He’s won more than you.” Stadium Wenger gives its creator a wonderful goodbye.

by Tony Attwood

“Thank you for having me for such a long time. I know that’s not easy. But above all I am like you. I am an Arsenal fan. That means more than just watching football. It is a way of life. It is caring about the beautiful game, the values we cherish and something that goes through every cell of our body.”

As farewells go it was so very good, a pleasure to be there and to watch the goodbyes.  And indeed a pleasure to think back to the start of times with Mr Wenger, and remember those games and those moments too.

It was a classy show throughout, with some wonderful little touches, like Mr Wenger taking off his tie and giving it to a person in the crowd (I couldn’t see who) at the Clock End.  And Bob Wilson saying that Pat Rice insisted that he (Pat) should hold Mr Wenger’s leaving present rather than Bob, on the grounds that Bob would probably drop it.

And what a present.  The golden trophy given uniquely to Arsenal by the League for the Unbeaten Season.  Something rather fine to put on the mantle piece.

Plus there was the chant from the North Bank: “He’s won more than you, Tottenham Hotspur, he’s won more than you.”  Not quite accurate across all time, of course, since Mr Wenger never had a chance to win the 2nd Division (Tottenham have won it twice), and in the end he didn’t get the Uefa League or the League Cup.  And yes, let us not be churlish for Tottenham have won the FA Cup eight times to Mr Wenger’s seven, but some of those (like the 1901 triumph) were before Mr Wenger was born which seems to make the competition a little unfair.

But Mr Wenger did manage to win the League more times in his 22 years than Tottenham have done in their 110 years in the League, which is quite something, and if we compare his 22 years with their last 22 years the trophy count is not just 3-0 to Arsenal in the League, but 7-0 to Arsenal in the FA Cup, both of which are rather good.

And all the pre-match talk about the worries of having to cancel the pre-season tour because we’d be playing in Europa League qualifiers in July vanished too.   And a little look at our goalscoring record this season compared with the rest of the Premier League shows that the forward line is looking encouraging, in what has been the most challenging of campaigns.  Here’s the league in goals scored order.  We’re certainly not top, but we are going in the right direction…

Pos Team P W D L F A GD Pts
1 Manchester City 36 30 4 2 102 26 76 94
3 Liverpool 37 20 12 5 80 38 42 72
6 Arsenal 36 18 6 12 72 48 24 60
4 Tottenham Hotspur 36 21 8 7 68 32 36 71
2 Manchester United 36 24 5 7 67 28 39 77
5 Chelsea 36 21 6 9 61 34 27 69

Yes, at the moment with two to go we are outscoring Tottenham, Man U and Chelsea.  And although the defence needs work, we have suddenly found just why another unknown youngster,  Konstantinos Mavropanos, has grabbed so much attention.  Everyone seemed to be demanding a new centre back, and it looks like we have one.

And although the attacks on Arsenal and Arsenal players still continue – there was one particularly viscious piece on Ozil yesterday – by and large most pundits had the decency to lay off, at least  just for the day.

The take on Match of the Day from Ian Wright and co was that even if Arsenal don’t have a huge amount of money to spend on players they have an unusually high number of quality youngsters ready to come through, starting of course with Maitland-Niles who seems to be able to play everywhere on the pitch but who above all looks like the most astonishing defensive midfielder.   With his addition and that of Mavropanos that is two big steps forward for next season.

And there is every chance that at least one of the other youngsters will now make the breakthrough – Nelson, Willock, Eddie…

Yes it was a lovely day out in the sun, and it was a great pleasure to be there.  Not only were the negativists either in hiding or changing their colours for the day, it was wonderful to see that virtually everyone stayed there.  At the end of the game I left my seat and walked through the concourses to join my friends with whom I had travelled to the game… and those concourses were empty.  Really, virtually no one left – everyone wanted to stay and say goodbye.

It was a great moment to savour.  And truly wonderful to have the chance to reflect with friends on having been watching the club in the Wenger era from the start to the end.

All they need to do now is rename the ground, “Stadium Wenger”.

 

Arsenal – Burnley : the high five goodbye from the Emirates…

Arsenal v Burnley Sunday 6 May 2018 – The Match Officials

Arsenal v Burnley. “English football is losing a beautiful mind”. Jonathan Pearce

 

34 comments to “He’s won more than you.” Stadium Wenger gives its creator a wonderful goodbye.

  • WalterBroeckx

    No Wenger no stadium so it should be renamed to him.

  • bnsb

    The Emirates-Wenger Stadium?

  • Kenneth Widmerpool

    https://youtu.be/2Lo1m4_M2FI

    Worth a look if you havent seen it.

  • Josif

    “Good evening! We are live from ‘Arsene Wenger Stadium’ as Arsenal prepare to take on their European rivals Bayern Munich for umpteenth time in the last decade. Cold and warm balls, eh? Anyway, we have a special guest tonight as Arsene Wenger himself is on the North Bank!”

    (Co-commentator makes a joke: “So, Arsene Wenger is at Arsene Wenger tonight?” Commentator makes a pity laugh at that attempt of a joke. Co-commentator makes another joke: “Does he carry ‘In me we trust’-banner? Commentator knocks him out with the mic.)

    It won’t be too long before we hear a battle of two crocodiles about who cried more tears when Arsene left.

    Ian Wright: “I have always supported Arsene through thick and thin!”

    Thierry Henry: “Me too. I almost missed a Manchester City coronation in 2017-18 to watch Arsene’s last game at the Emirates. Well, almost.”

    Wright: “Thierry, like you almost scored a winner for Arsenal in the Champions League Final 2006?”

    Henry: “At least I didn’t abuse Arsenal fans.”

  • James

    The Emirates Wenger Park

  • wenger’s legacy to his successor:

    cech
    bellerin – mustafi – chambers – kolasinac
    ramsey – xhaka
    mkhitaryan – özil – aubameyang
    lacazette

    ospina
    holding – koscielny – mavropanos
    niles – elneny – cazorla – monreal
    iwobi – wilshere
    welbeck

    (the admirable old soldiers kos/santi/nacho would be more than happy to serve the club this way, they are “special”, as AW underlined several times)

    chambers/mavropanos; bellerin/niles; özil/ wilshere, a few more, maybe: the jury’s out, i know …

    in the wings: no less than ali baba’s treasure:
    amaechi – gilmour – nketiah – smith-rowe – willock – nelson – dasilva … plus a very personal thing: i always liked chuba akpom a lot, and the guy has done remarkably well in belgium, scoring the winner of his new team against anderlecht, for example … i’d certainly give him one more chance. well … that’s just me, i know that too

    i.e. not a penny to spend for the new man

    let this successor be eddie howe, and this’ll be as smooth a transition as we could expect

    henry’s absence was conspicuous. he was nothing before playing for the great man, he got back to being nothing after he left arsenal, but he chose to celebrate the saudi triumph with the very man who benched him at barcelona.
    henry’s a despicable, narcissistic piece of … crap (let’s be decent, this is untold, after all); in the french national team he went as far as Iago-ing his childhood “buddy” trézéguet out of the starting eleven
    i can’t wait for his statue to be debunked

    anyway, even in front of a computer screen, it was a great day, i envied you more than ever, you season ticket holders

  • blacksheep

    thanks Tony, I can fill in some information. He gave his tie to a young lad in the crowd who’d been waiving a placard that said ‘AW please can I have your tie?’ – classy. The spuds chant was for Alex Scott, “She’s won more than you…’ but you were a long way away 🙂

    I particularly loved the reception for Per Mertesacker and seeing him stride off – the last player to leave the pitch – wrapped in a German flag with BFG on it, was wonderful.

    It was a privilege being there and showed that this great club still does pomp and ceremony with real style. We even had the pantomime villains in the shape of the Kroenkes. Not a sign of Ivan on the big screens though.

    A word for Burnley too, who didn’t come to waste time and tried to play football. Their fans sang ‘one Arsene Wenger’ and about two dozen bothered to stay behind to watch the farewells and join in with the applause. It was a real FOOTBALL occasion and I hope it augers well for the future.

  • Kenneth Widmerpool

    A mate of mine who sits at the clock-end said the Burnley fans also sang : “You two-faced bastards you got him the sack” and “You’re Only here for the T-Shirts”.

  • WalterBroeckx

    Kenneth…. well they are partly right with those songs….

  • @Kenneth, the Burnley fans, bless their souls, had a point.

    Wenger has said his bye-byes,to the same people who were constantly on his back to get him the sack. He did that with a touch of class, proving once more that form is temporary, class is permanent.

    You can’t put a good man down, can you?

  • Thank you Tony, and your team at Untold. For this and the hundreds of articles written over the years, in support of the team during the Wenger era.

  • Kenneth Widmerpool

    From what Ive picked up, most non-Arsenal fans are well aware of the Wob and what theyve done-hence the Lancs having a sing song.
    The thing for me this year is the utterly baffling away form. Fortress Emirates has been great, but the curse of the blue kit (what a horrible weak design-imo anyway she doesnt wear a blue ribbon, its bloody yellow!).
    Get that away form sorted out a bit better and we are back. Not that the Spuds made a final this year.
    And perhaps St.Totteringham is working up a brew with St.Bottleit to put them in the EL?

    One thing thats already made mythos status is the ten year divide-AW’S first ten years are magic and the next not. The stats dont show that at all, and the stats dont show the stadium, and the money bags turning up either. Two of the three FA Cups were incredible games of high octane emotion.
    But the clouds of Wob misery are gone for the moment, floating off in double standards now theyve achieved their aim. And the rest to to see.

  • Marianne

    The chant about THFC was when Alex Scott received her trophy and was ‘She’s won more than you…..

  • AFC

    The squad needs a bit of an overhaul. The new manager have a job on his hands. New keeper, two new CBs, a RB and a DM at the least. Will be interesting to see what the new manager does.

  • knobby

    Your only here for the t-shirts maybe correct. There are 179 for sale on ebay with one at £250 allegedly signed by Arséne.

  • Jammy

    According to Andy Grey Arsene has left Arsenal in a much worse state than when Fergie left United. These parasites really don’t know when to call it a day..

  • Menace

    Spot on Marianne. The chant was ‘She’s (Alex Scott) won more than you. Tottenham Hotspurs she’s won more than you.’

    Truly what a fabulous record our Ladies team has. The team that drew only one game all season & won all the rest including the European Cup. The BBC gave the team of the year to the Ryder Cup team showing how shabby their treatment of our Ladies was. Every one of that team deserves an honour ‘Dame’.

  • Zam

    Lol, that’s a funny post. Henry was nothing before coming to arsenal? Really? A world cup winner in 98 top scoring along with zidane for the French team, making it into the team of the tournament?
    Nothing after he left arsenal? How about winning 6trophies in 09 including the champions league, la liga and world club cup as part of a deadly triumvirate of himself, etoo &messi, 2yrs after leaving arsenal. Because you love Wenger doesn’t mean you must try to denigrate others

  • Zam

    AKBs give it a rest. Wenger’s gone there’s nothing you can do about it. Whatever you say about the Wobs, they turned up and honoured the great man. Whether you enjoyed it or not. Even the great man acknowledged that he got to know how much they respected him and his work even though they weren’t always happy with it. The question you should ask yourselves since you’re so pissed off at the wobs is, since you claim to be an overwhelming majority over the wobs, where was your voice of support for the great man when he needed it? Apart from Ty, where were the rest of you? It’s not about hiding on untold and complaining non stop, when the wobs were crowd funding to fly Wenger out planes, you guys needed a Chinese group (or was it sir Chip’s initiative) to get a Wenger in banner flown. Either talk is cheap, or most of you were indifferent

  • AFC, I think you’ve been looking at a different team from me.

  • Marko

    Ferguson got a stand but you want Wenger to get a stadium named after him? Come on common sense please

  • Menace

    Zam, Wengers gone – true. What we can do about it is hate your likes forever. You may have some knowledge about the game but your two faced treatment of Wenger will be sung about for many years.

    Wenger was involved with the building of the stadium whereas Fergie only selected players to build great teams aided & abetted by the PGMOL.

  • Marko

    You need to grow up or be less stupid. Ferguson achieved great things in the game and is considered arguably the greatest manager of all time and duly and deservedly got a stand named after him. Wenger won three league titles and 7 FA Cups zero European trophies and you want a stadium named after him? Just no. You want him honoured named your house after him.

  • Marko

    34 points behind 1st nah he’s not blind

  • Zam

    Lol, common sense isn’t common bro

  • Xi_gunner

    There’s only one Arsene Wenger…

    Can’t wait for his return… yes i’m deluded..

    ?

  • Zam

    Lol @menace. He’s gone man. Loose that rope from the fan, you’ll be fine after a while

  • Zam

    Lol, I agree. Or name the blog after him. Untold Wenger

  • porter

    Billy The Dog :- Obviously there will need to change some of the personel. AFC ‘s list is a little over the top but if a younger keeper capable of pushing Cech became available would you turn your nose up ? Could that man be Macey or Martinez ? if so there’s no need to buy but the need to look past our present keepers for the future is there .
    We sent Martinez to Granada to get experience as they were short of a first teamer but they bought another and he has wasted a year playing only 3 games.
    Bellerin I have faith in but we certainly need someone pushing him too and the midfield needs an organisor , we have loads of talent but it does it’s own thing and does not work as a unit . The same can be said of the back 4 /3 . I remeber George Graham’s legnth of string .Perhaps we could ask Vic Akers if he knows where it is before he leaves , you never know it might be in a box somewhere in the boot room.Chambers , Holding and Mavropulos could use it and they could well develop into the unit we want.
    Just going for new is not always the answer as we do have a good crop of young ones on the horizon but they need a talker on the pitch someone to tell them to keep things simple and they will be fine. The lack of talking has cost us badly this year , had Ospina , who could see all in front of him , called Bellerin and told him about Costa that goal may well have been averted but he was obviously unaware until it was too late.
    The policy of telling players to express themselves is fine going forward but defensively sometimes you have to have someone else to do the thinking for them.

  • Zam

    Instead of singing about the wobs forever, maybe you should have Been singing about Wenger and his team during the low days of the 5-1,5-1,5-1 and others. Maybe it would have averted the sack

  • porter

    Should be Getafe not Granada for Martinez.

  • Josif

    @Zam

    Arsenal during Wenger’s era:

    positive record v Milan (2-1),

    positive record v Real Madrid (1-0),

    positive record v Juventus (1,5-0,5),

    positive record v Inter (1-0),

    no defeat in the league to Chelsea before third Abramovich’s season,

    20 years finishing above Spuds in a row.

    Italian clubs I’ve mentioned and Real Madrid are all bigger clubs than Arsenal, not just because four of them have won European Cup 24 times combined.

    One of the greatest managers ever Fabio Capello was beaten twice by Arsene. Another great manager Marcello Lippi lost to Arsenal 3-1 at Highbury and won 1-0 at home in the group stage. We’d have avoided that 1-0 defeat if someone had scored a penalty at 0-0.

    Even the last two seasons – worst of Arsene’s Arsenal career – have seen us finish 5th and 6th respectively, with an FA Cup and a Community Shield won. Some of us will see what next 22 years of Arsenal will bring but I don’t expect we will win 3 league titles (including the Invincible one) and 7 FA Cups.

  • Pat

    Nice one Josif. Lovely article Tony.

  • Fluff

    Had to turn MOD2 off lost count of how many times Jonathan Peirce mentioned Wenger.
    Lost count after a very short time.

    Good luck to Arsene you have been a credit.

    Chelsea fan