The original piece that had them sneering so much noted (as much of the rest of the media did at the time Mr Wenger made his well-publicised comment that Arsenal would do all right), Arsenal were “20th in the table with zero points and zero goals from their opening three Premier League matches, seeing manager Mikel Arteta come under intense pressure for his job.”
We might also note that ever since then the sprout has abjectly failed to mention any of the form guides, showing Arsenal operating at a level close to that of Liverpool and Manchester City.
So the piece says of Arteta, “The first-time coach secured an FA Cup soon after taking over in 2019, but has since seen his reputation plummet with a poor 2020/21 campaign, and a disastrous start to the current season.”
The fact is it is the reputation of Talk Sport that has plummeted to depths previously not explored by any of the sports media (except perhaps the Daily Mirror and the rest of the Reach plc media) sneeringly saying “Yet despite things looking bad this campaign, Wenger puts The Gunner’s poor form down to the quality of the opposition,” quoting Mr Wenger as saying, “Today the club is in good shape. They had two tough games, the team has potential and I hope they can come back.”
The Sprout then went on to say talk about “under-pressure Arteta, with former Inter Milan, Chelsea and Juventus boss Antonio Conte leading the way at 3/1” to replace him.
The fact is of course that there never was any move to replace Mr Arteta, especially after the last two-thirds of the previous season (which Talk Sport utterly ignored) in which Arsenal were the second-best performing team in the league.
Arsenal then built a completely new defence and suffered an outbreak of illness in the squad which TalkSport failed to take into account instead taking it as a given that Arteta would be ousted, thus giving the station more chance to talk its gibberish.
Fortunately for all of us, Arsenal is not run by Talk Sport, which remains a pathetically stupid radio station.
Talking of which it is also fortunate that the club no longer has Alisha Usmanov involved, In January 2017, Usmanov’s holding company, USM, did a deal with Everton for the naming rights of the club’s training ground, now known as USM Finch Farm. It is a rather curious naming deal for it is a little difficult to see what possible financial benefit is there to any Usmanov company in that arrangement. But I am sure there must be one and I am not looking in the right place.
Other clubs with Russian ownership include Chelsea, of course, which is 100% Russian owned, and Bournemouth, owned by Maxim Denim likewise 100% Russian. Interestingly there is no Russian ownership of clubs in Spain, Germany and Italy, where they seem to be a little more careful about who owns a club.
If the UK really is serious about striking back at Russian interests in the UK, Chelsea and Everton will face a difficult time. But of course, Talk Sport aren’t mentioning that.