The four dangers that could stop Arsenal’s rise next season. 2: The journalists

by Tony Attwood


In my last article Arsenal face four huge dangers as they stand again on the edge of greatness 

I pointed out the problem and challenge the newly regenerated Arsenal face from the Arsenal Supporters Trust with their ceaseless demands for involvement in the club, coming after their endless attacks on the board and management of the club. 

I see their involvement in the club as a potential for utter disaster.

My view is that this should be resisted at all costs, noting the progress that has just been made without them being engaged with the club.

Indeed I think it is worth repeating the league table that I produced before…

Pos Club / era P W D L F A GD Pts
1 Man C post Xmas 24 20 0 4 59 20 39 60
2 Man U post Xmas 24 12 9 3 43 22 21 45
3 Arsenal post Xmas 23 13 5 5 41 21 20 44
4 Chelsea post Xmas 23 12 6 5 28 20 8 42
5 Leicester post Xmas 23 11 6 6 40 29 11 39
6 Liverpool post Xmas 23 10 5 8 30 23 7 35
7 Tottenham post Xmas 23 10 4 3 39 29 10 34

But now I move on to a second problem that the club face.   The ceaseless desire of journalists to promote changes to the team as the only way of progressing.

Mr Arteta has transformed pre-Christmas Arsenal into a new team, and the thanks he has got is a total ignoring of his achievement by journalists who have instead continued to promote their one and only agenda: change the team.

They do this because it is simple (blame a few players) and so the lazy journalists can complete the column inches without leaving the pub just by making stuff up.

You might recall their success rate in the last five years has been 3%.

Arsenal has had a stunning run of 23 games since Christmas and delivered everything any sane supporter could ask for, apart from winning the FA Cup – which not even Mr Wenger or Herbert Chapman managed to do each year.   (Chapman, you may recall, won the FA Cup just once with Arsenal in eight attempts.  Wenger did it seven times in 22 years – one every three years.  Arteta’s one in two is not bad).

But criticism is pouring in.   We must keep Willock at the club we are told.   We need to shake up the defence we are told almost daily, when in fact even with that desperate start to the season we still have the third best defence in the league ACROSS THE WHOLE SEASON

Lge Pos Team P W D L F A GD Pts
1 Manchester City 37 26 5 6 78 32 46 83
3 Chelsea 37 19 10 8 57 34 23 67
9 Arsenal 37 17 7 13 53 39 14 58
4 Liverpool 37 19 9 9 66 42 24 66

So point one: don’t disrupt the defence.  To take us up to the level of defence Chelsea has would require us to let in five goals fewer in 37 games.   But here is the thing – if we measure the defence since Christmas we have conceded just one more goal than Manchester City.  Man City who can spend billions on each player if they wish, now they have seen off all the FFP challenges.

Are these people seriously saying Man City has a bad defence?  No, so the answer in the real world of sensible people is


Of course there are going to be changes to the team that can’t be avoided – contracts coming to an end and players simply wanting to leave (mostly to get away from the ravings of the journalists and their allies in the ground).   But as far as possible, I would say, bring in youngsters who can help keep the defence together and provide support if needed, but that’s it.

As for the attack…

Post Christmas we were the third highest scorers – and that was with Aubameyang out of the team and out of form for much of the time.  But across the whole season our results in attack were less good – we were the ninth most prolific team.

But we have improved, since Christmas out-scoring Chelsea, Liverpool, Leicester and Tottenham.  So we’re not that bad are we?   Maybe we do need another attacker… but if so only one, I suspect.

However in the last 90 minutes on 25 May as I write this, these stories have come up.

At 1003 HITC had “Report: Arsenal aim to sell Willock & use money to buy 22-year-old called ‘top quality’ by Emery

And then at 10.51 the BBC had: Willock’s staying at Arsenal – Arteta

So it continues minute by minute, hour by hour.   As I write this we are buying Emerson from Barcelona, (Sports Mole), Emiliano Buendia from Norwich (Arsenal’s number one target according to “the 72”), Nikola Milenković (Sport Witness), Dusan Vlahovic (Sport Witness), Kaio Jorge (which might not be on since the headline is Report: Arsenal aim to sell Willock & use money to buy 22-year-old called ‘top quality’ by Emery

And all of that is just in the last hour!!!!!  

Yes of course Arsenal might have to let some players go because of their contractual issues or because they are not getting enough games, or because the manager sees them as now past their best, but the ceaseless howling from the media their lapdogs is insane.

I don’t mean that Arsenal are so stupid they will take any notice of all this mindless tripe, but some weak minded fans do, and they are the ones who endless waving the placards demanding the manager be sacked because we could have had some player who now does well elsewhere.

Someone needs to be fighting this tsunami of gibberish, and for the moment it is mostly Untold.


3 Replies to “The four dangers that could stop Arsenal’s rise next season. 2: The journalists”

  1. Please keep fighting the tsunami of gibberish. You save me so much time by helping me avoid it all. My thoughts to our defence are that more praise should be directed Callum Chambers way. He has done a fantastic job at right back when called upon. I also think Granit Xhaka’s appearances at left back quite notable. I can not help but think how much better we could have been if we were allowed to tackle like Villa or the spuds and this should be a factor in any assessment. There is also the factor of both Mavrapanos and Saliba having very good loan spells who we would expect to return. Oh the hopelessness of it all! I wonder if supporter trusts are thinking the same.

  2. fabulous (provided it’s not just PR, or some twisted way to raise joe’s price tag) piece of news today:
    willock/saka/smithrowe should be the cornerstone upon which 2021-2022 arsenal will be built!! – not to mention that, given a proper opportunity (i.e. a decent run of games, preferably in the same position), reiss will shine as bright as his hale end mates already have

  3. But this is where stats become misleading as clearly there are many areas the team hasn’t improved in, even after Christmas.

    They’re still lacking a clear playing style. Seemingly Mikel tasks the defensive line to play out from the back but during this phase there was barely ​movement or patterns to progress possession. Our final third-play has lacked cohesion and understanding all season,we often rely on individual skill to create chances. With the calibre of attackers in our squad we should have scored much more at home.

    I agree with lots that is shown on this site and do prefer the stability approach towards managers. However, not only is Arteta I’ll equipped due to limited managerial experience; he doesn’t appear to espouse Arsenal’s values through his coaching philosophy and man management

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