by Tony Attwood
Among the many comments made on this site after the Southampton game there was this one…
“Atmosphere at the Emirates is completely toxic now. Performances get worse and worse every week. It’s not going to get better under Emery and it’s absolutely not healthy. Sack him now before any more damage is done.”
I don’t agree about the atmosphere – it might be toxic in some parts of the ground but it wasn’t where I sit. But obviously in general commentaries about Arsenal are very negative and there is a point at the end of that particular comment that is very telling and needs debating: “Sack him now before any more damage is done.”
This is very similar to the type of opinion that was expressed over Mr Wenger and led to him leaving the club before the end of his contract.
But the fact that the removal of Mr Wenger, at the behest of many fans, has been followed by a statement from one fan “Sack him now before any more damage is done” within just 18 month surely needs pondering.
Mr Wenger was removed because in the eyes of some he was damaging the club, and that anyone else would do better. Now Mr Emery needs to be removed on the grounds because in the eyes of some he was damaging the club, and that anyone else would do better, according to some. And what then? Is the prescription that Arsenal should just go on doing this every 18 months until the club progresses?
The answer I guess would be “no, get the right man next time.” Which I suppose might be ok, were it not for the fact that 80% of the Premier League clubs that have done that of late, are now in a worse position than they were under the previous manager.
Of course it can be argued that we should just go on sacking managers on a regular basis until we do eventually get one who can take us back into the top four. But still there are two major problems.
Every match that passes the anger grows on blogs and radio stations, stoked up by the mainstream newspapers and TV channels, and this must surely be reducing the attractiveness of Arsenal as a destination for any top manager who happens to be looking for a job. So the likelihood of finding an out of work manager who actually wants to come to Arsenal declines.
Second there is the question of what happens when Arsenal do reach the top four once again. After all when Mr Wenger was delivering his final run of results before we slipped out of the top four there were no celebrations about 19 consecutive years in the champions league. Rather we had the endless repetition of the phrase “fourth is not a trophy”.
In short getting back into the top four won’t stop the negativity any more than replacing the manager will automatically get us back into the top four or stop the ceaseless whining and moaning, anymore than the ceaseless whining and moaning, will encourage really good managers to apply for a job at Arsenal.
Managers know how tenuous their jobs are and are always considering not just this job but also the next. “Failed at Arsenal” is not a good lined on a cv, and so increasingly as players consider Arsenal as not a good place to ply their trade because of the toxic atmosphere so really good up and coming managers do not want to risk their careers by putting out teams to play in front of what must be one of the most negative atmospheres in the country.
The simple fact is that the media has been knocking Arsenal since before Mr Wengerarrived and now they have got Arsenal fans doingbtheir dirty work for them. They must be laughing all the way to the pub.
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