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So just how long will it take Liverpool to catch up with Arsenal?

By Tony Attwood

Of course one can’t begrudge Liverpool fans from having their celebrations for  the last couple of nights.  True, they might have spread the virus somewhat, but it will only be between themselves, and those people all chose to gather in a group after the club celebrated their thirty year trip to win the League.  Their choice, and it won’t harm those of us not living in Liverpool.

The media equally has laid off the break of regulations, focusing instead on south coast beaches and gatherings in London which were not attended by Liverpool supporters.  Illegal gatherings in London, Bournemouth etc bad.  Liverpool good.  It was ever thus.

So now knowing for sure what we have known for some time, that Liverpool will win the league, I wonder about how far they can go, and indeed how long it can take them, to catch up with Arsenal’s achievements over the past 30 years.

And it seems to me to be worth contemplating for, as is self-evident from the continuing coverage on national radio in England, their victory for the first time in 30 years is very big news and will probably remain so until Christmas.

Since Liverpool last won the league in 1990, Arsenal have won the League four times, in 1991, 1998, 2002 and 2004.

Looking at the FA Cup since 1990 Arsenal have won it in 1993, 1998, 2002, 2003, 2005, 2014, 2015, 2017.  giving us 13 FA Cups all told.  Eight wins since Liverpool previously won the league.

Liverpool won the Cup in 1992, 2001 and 2006 giving them seven FA Cups all told – three since they previously won the league.

In terms of the League Cup Arsenal have won it once in the last 30 years, in 1993, and Liverpool have it four times.  They have outdone us in that competition.

In Europe Liverpool have won the Uefa cup once and the Champions League twice, while Arsenal have won the Cup Winners Cup once.  So there again they beat us.

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So yes, while Arsenal have significantly outperformed Liverpool in terms of  the League, and the FA Cup, Liverpool have outperformed Arsenal in the League Cup and in Europe.

Arsenal have also outperformed Liverpool in terms of their league position over the 30 years, with Liverpool coming 8th on three occasions.  We had a 10th and a 12th under George Graham, but otherwise the lowest is sixth once.   But more to the point we have the record number of seasons of continual appearance in the Champions League for England, and indeed the only club anywhere to exceed Arsenal’s Champions League run is Real Madrid.

But the biggest difference between Arsenal and Liverpool, and possibly the reason why we have won the League and FA Cup more than Liverpool ,is the management.

Since Dalglish won the league three times for Liverpool they have had (excluding temporary managers) Souness, Evans, Houlier, Benitez, Hodgson, Dalglish II, Rogers and then Klopp.   Seven managerial changes excluding temporary appointments to find a league winner.

Arsenal on the other hand, leaving aside the temporary management after Graham was sacked mid-season, had Rioch for one year and then Wenger.  Only in the last two seasons have we adopted the Liverpool model of change and change, and our league position shows the result of that tactic.

Finding the right manager and sticking with him is the key. Three managers between 2018 and 2020 is not a recipe for success now.  If it is to come we shall have to wait.

But of course it is not as easy as that.  When the media bothers with Arsenal at all these days, it is to tell of turmoil and discontent.  As reported in Is Arsenal a dysfunctional club as Mislintat suggests? once one person starts whinging and moaning, so it goes on as other people jump on the knocking Arsenal bandwagon.

This has a continuing effect until eventually players don’t want to come to a club so bound up in the mire.

So we have today the headline “Mikel Arteta ‘can’t trust’ three key Arsenal players as transfer warning issued.”

That headline makes it sound as it Arteta has made it clear that he can’t trust the players, but in fact that is not the case.   As they eventually get around to saying “That’s the opinion of ex-Arsenal player Stewart Robson, [BT Sport’s Italian football co-commentator]. who thinks Arteta has lost faith in Mesut Ozil, Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s ability to perform for him.”

These headlines of dissent that pour out from the media day by day discourage anyone from coming to Arsenal.  Players look at the recent Guendouzi headlines and think, well, if he is leaving after such a short period of time, there’s clearly something wrong.

But the point is that the headline “Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta drops Matteo Guendouzi hint amid rumours ace wants transfer exit” was also a piece in the Express which has a daily, indeed almost hourly agenda of knocking Arsenal.

Here’s another Express piece from today…

“Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta must build a team comprising of a mix of younger players and more experienced players in order to have long-term success at the Emirates. That’s the belief of club legend Sol Campbell.”

Well, yes, Southend United manager.  To be fair in Southend Sol took over a club that was struggling, and maybe he needs to show that he can lift them a little further than he has done before he gives Arteta advice.

Club P W D L F A GD Pts
20 AFC Wimbledon 35 8 11 16 39 52 -13 35
21 Tranmere Rovers 34 8 8 18 36 60 -24 32
22 Southend United 35 4 7 24 39 85 -46 19
23 Bolton Wanderers 34 5 11 18 27 66 -39 14
24 Bury 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 -12

Still, at least they are not Allerdyce’s old club Bolton.

Anyway, there is one other thing Liverpool have beaten Arsenal on.  The number of times they have been banned from signing youngsters because of misdemeanours by the club in an earlier transfer.

3 comments to So just how long will it take Liverpool to catch up with Arsenal?

  • Chris

    re Guendouzi,

    the player is french. So I went looking at french football sites, and read a different story. He is supposedly courted by Barcelona, Real, PSG, so technically he could mean a nice profit for Arsenal.

    But then it is stated that he had a meeting with the management and apart from discussing the event in Brighton, management reiterated their confidence in him.

    2 others say he is leaving, but their news is older then the first one. And basic search does not come up with any crap

    And I am happy to see that one ex player is able to state the obvious and be seen as an expert oracle… describing what he is seing unfold in front of his eye. At least he has not insulted Arteta’s intelligence not Arsenal. That is rare…

  • Laos Gooner

    I doubt if we will ever catch LiVARpool on getting all English clubs banned from Europe. I doubt we will ever catch them on match fixing either. Not seeing much of that “glorious” history being used against them in the media.

  • I’ve lost count of how many managers the spuds used, before they finally finished above us.
    Just think how much that will have cost them in compensation.

    We also have our own darker history to remember as well, although I agree it goes back over 100 years ago and on the managerial side, George Graham is not the pillar of virtue one should aspire to.

    How long until we catch up with Liverpool?
    That’s the question they were asking about us for quite a while,of course, and I believe we won’t know the answer until we have a owner who is willing to support the club in that respect.

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