Wenger: will he win the league ever again?

Do you ever expect to win the league again while Wenger is manager at Arsenal?

I was listening to Talk Sport the other evening (I know, I know) when suddenly they posed that question and it struck me like a bolt of lightning. I don’t usually take too much notice of the anti-Arsenal rhetoric that Adrian Durham spews out. I realised recently that they only ever allow phone calls on their show from the kind of Arsenal supporter whose sole aim is to slag off the club and Wenger in particular; some may say what has taken you so long to work that out, to which I would say, fair comment.

The answer to the question came to me after a flash of the deepest soul searching I have been forced to make in the recent past and I realise that, in fact, I don’t expect to win the league again while Wenger is at the helm. And yet, even after questioning how and why I ever became a fully paid up, card carrying Wengerite in the first place I remain just that. Why, are you mad, I hear 99% of those Arsenal supporters who are likely to frequent Le Grove say?

Man City have made this question far easier to answer recently. It is much clearer for Arsenal supporters to see that their spending power restricts our ability to buy the best players who come onto the market, it is now generally understood that Arsenal cannot compete with their financial muscle.

The frustrating thing is that people like me have been trying to point out that we have been handcuffed in the transfer market for years, ever since Abramovich arrived in fact and things are not getting better. We are no longer just being financially dwarfed by Man City and Chelsea,  we are now about to have the free run we have previously enjoyed in the French transfer market squeezed by the arrival of more Middle Eastern financial heavy weights to Paris St Germain. For years we have had first choice of pretty much all the top talent that appeared in the French league — that is about to change.

So if it is finally realised that no matter who is at the helm of Arsenal that they would still be financially restricted by the lack of ability to work in the transfer market then why would you want to change what we already have?

Go through all the managers in the EPL and ask who you would prefer, there is no one, that being the case we would have to take a chance on a young up and coming European, in the same way as Chelsea have been forced to and even with a vast transfer chest available to AVB look how that is working out.

We have a manager who wants to be with us, is proud of the club, is determined to do the best he can and has the kind of experience that most other managers only dream of achieving in their life times.

Coming back to PSG, it was never reported in the papers but is there anyone who really thinks that the new owners didn’t offer that job with twice the wage (yes, twice the wage Herb) to Wenger, of course they did and yet where is he?

As Arsenal supporters we are slowly and painfully coming to terms with where we fit in the new financial football world order, realising that gone are the days when Wenger could attract and pay the best players on the world stage, gone are the days when we shared financial dominance in the EPL and the cold realisation that we have no divine right to win the league stares us in the face and yet even though, as I have said above, I do not expect to win the league again while Wenger is manager, it is financialy impossible for him to do so, I still believe that he is the best man for the job.

In Wenger I still trust

Do you?

Written by LB

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231 Responses to Wenger: will he win the league ever again?

  1. Big Raddy says:

    LB. Super post.

    Prior to reading your first para I had not asked myself that question. Like you I believe the answer is that winning the PL is unlikely – not impossible but unlikely, for all the reasons in the post.

    Are there other managers in the PL who could successfully replace AW? How could we know? Martinez could do well, Coyle could do well, Brendan Rogers? Sadly, I cannot see them being given time to try by the “I want it Now” boo-boys at the Emirates.

    We are most likely to replace AW with a rising star in European football, someone similar to Villa-Boas. Remi Garde?

  2. Big Raddy says:

    Just seen that the bastards have screwed me again!

    I was coming to London for the Newcastle game on March 10 – now they have put it back to the 12 and I fly home on the 11th!!

    Perhaps the Powers that Be have heard I am a Jonah.

  3. chas says:

    Excellent, LB.

    My answer would probably be ‘no’, too.

    Wenger haters would say he wouldn’t ever manage at a sugar daddy (PSG-type) club as he’d be sacked if he didn’t win anything.

    After the game on Sunday, the thought even crossed my mind as to how I’d feel if I woke up the next day to discover that AW had resigned. I was surprised by my own answer. Perhaps I’m just becoming tired of the same old story unfolding for the past few seasons.

    That’s not to say that I don’t support the club, manager and players 100% though.

  4. chas says:

    BR,
    Perhaps you ought to plan your Gooner schedule after they choose the TV games?

  5. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi LB, thank you for a well-written and thought-provoking post. Top stuff :)

    In general, I agree with your points. You might remember I did a ‘job advert for Arsene’s position’ post a while ago, and yes it would be hard to come up with a realistic alternative that fits into the Arsenal model. However, there are decent enough alternatives: the likes of Van Marwijk (Dutch national team manager), Rijkaard or Van Gaal (as long as he takes Bergkamp with him to do all the press contacts) would all be able to work with a limited budget and build further on our excellent youth development programme. Their visions of football would fit well with Arsenal too.

    But that is not the point. Arsene can do it too and there is no guarantee that anybody can do it better than him.

    The next four months will be crucial, at least for me. I want to see harmony and fight, a clear direction for the club and a team formation that works for us. More than that, I want to see an Arsene Wenger in control of things, with real belief and enthusiasm. If that wont be there we will need to make a change.

  6. Big Raddy says:

    chas. Not possible if I want to take advantage of cheaper flights.

    But thanks for the advice – the extra €75+ is worth spending if I am guaranteed a game :-)

  7. Park Royal Gooner says:

    I agree with you regarding talkshite they accomodate the funs who trade negative comments towards Wenger and Arsenal.At times i think its Spurs supporters who call pretending to be Arsenal funs.
    With the financial powers of Chelski and Man City we have been limited to figting for scraps with other clubs.I think without the injuries we have suffered in the last few seasons i strongly believe we would have won the title atleast twice.I trust once the club find the a solution to our never ending injury list coupled by the acquisition of a top striker,another defensive midfielder and a creative midfielder to compliment the current team i strongly believe Arsene can deliver a the Premier League but that all depends on the boards ambition.

  8. MickyDidIt89 says:

    LB,
    I’ve just had to quickly grow a beard so that I could stroke it in a sagely way while the old grey stuff kicks into gear. That’s what a good post makes me do. Thanks.
    I disagree.
    We beat the Chavs away, and gave City a proper scare, and I still believe that with two world class additions, a little luck on the injury front, yes we could win the league. I also don’t believe we need a sugar daddy to achieve this, simply a re-jigging of resources and some more lucrative sponsorship deals and away we could go.

  9. Big Raddy says:

    Micky. You don’t answer the question. Do you honestly believe we will win the PL with AW (given his age) in charge?

  10. MickyDidIt89 says:

    TA,
    There is so much to admire about Dutch football, but not Van Marwijk, the man who engineered the most dire and thuggish team to ever contend a WC Final. Not The Arsenal type surely.

  11. WiganGooner says:

    Well done, an awesome post, well thought out and written.

    I really enjoyed reading it and digesting it. Great job.

    Totally agree with the post, Arsene or any other manager will struggle at Arsenal while Arsenal has the financial constraints it has vs the likes of Citeh and Chelski(to an extent).

    I think soon there will have to be a super league for all the clubs that have such wealthy benefactors, or otherwise clubs like Arsenal will struggle to compete. You can’t buy the league, but you can buy enough good players to make an individual difference in every game. Citeh aren’t necessarily a good team, but the likes of Silva, Aguero are super-individuals who can (at any given moment) kill the game.

    WG

  12. Rasp says:

    Thanks for a challenging post as ever LB. I too have been stroking Micky’s beard.

    As usual, I think the truth lies somewhere in the middle. All your points about the financial muscle of our competitors and the effect that has on our transfer activity is true.

    It is also true that no manager can get it right every time they make a transfer – Koscielny and Chamakh are two polar opposites on the scale of success.

    What puzzles me is why, at a time when we were having to be incredibly frugal with our finances, did we hand out contract extensions and ridiculously high wages to players who had not proved their worth to the squad?

    The result of that 2-3 year period when we seemed desparate to hold onto mediocre players is that we cannot afford to buy in better quality now because we are still wasting money on players we can’t sell.

    Now I don’t know whether AW was entirely responsible for those decisions or whether it was out of his hands, but it was wrong and should not be repeated.

    As far ar replacement managers for AW is concerned, there are many names out there that could do the job. I can’t think of any in the EPL, but there are a lot to chose from abroad. Whoever came in would need to be given time as they would inevitably have a different style.

    In the same way as we couldn’t replace Cesc with Cesc2, we couldn’t replace Arsene with Arsene2

  13. I always believe we can win the league until it’s mathematically not possible. I would love us to win the league again under Arsene not to shut up the boo boys because they are going to moan anyway but to stick it up Fab and Na$ ……. especially Na$.

    My ex-husband had an announcement put out at the Emirates to me in April 2008 reminding me that the Fat Lady hadn’t sung yet because that’s what I was always telling him …….

    Last season we only had to win our final 10 games to win the title, although we ended up fourth it had been a great season. 16 games left, 48 points to play for ……… I’m still in.

  14. Rasp says:

    I’ve just realised I hadn’t answered the main question of LB’s post …. got cariued away ranting :oops:

    Yes we could win the EPL again under Wenger but it is extremely unlikely because I can’t see anything changing and I think he will only stay to the end of his current contract.

  15. chas says:

    Sorry, BR, it wasn’t meant to be advice.

    Whenever I book train tickets for a game, I always have to book in advance on a non-cancellation basis to get the cheapest deal, so I’d be right up sh*t creek if there were last minute rearrangements.

  16. LB says:

    Thanks for the kind words.

    That question:

    “Do you ever expect to win the league again while Wenger is manager at Arsenal?”

    Really does provoke a horrible moment’s thought doesn’t it? But if you come to the same answer as I did “no” then you also realise the next choice is slightly easier: so, what are we going to do: moan or support?

    I could have added half a dozen caveats up there but they would have diluted the impact I was trying to make.

    The most obvious one being if the fair financial rules actually bite, they could change everything.

  17. VCC says:

    I,m with Micky here. I don,t think we will win the league with Wenger in charge because he still remains a stubborn Frenchman and will not listen to anyone.
    Micky’s points are valid imo. If we clear the dross away, that will leave enough coppers in the bank to purchase the 2-3 players we need to start winning things again.
    Just look at the recent games we have thrown away, if we had some fresher faces with quality we would be right up there with the City,s and Mancs.
    On paper this ManUre team does not frighten me, if we had not replaced Ox with Arshavin who knows what might have happened?
    I,ve given my honest opinion and now waiting for the backlash. Come on AA’ers give me the stick now, I’m expecting it.

  18. MickyDidIt89 says:

    BR,
    I think its more down to the board than the manager. For me AW is capable, yes. The present Owner? Don’t know. The present negotiator? No chance, but these are gut feelings rather than based any concrete knowledge.

  19. Double98 says:

    Excellent post – I am a frustrated wengerite at the moment but i still have faith.

    Wenger can win the League again. If given time he will win it in 3 years.
    He has never bought top quality players and the titles he has won have been based on his ability to make players play above themselves.

    His teams are organic system built around a single philosophy – he has to change that philosophy every 3-4 years as the opposition counter it and his players start to believe the hype and they mistakenly attribute their performance as being above the system.
    He came close to winning a title with the 433 Fabregas philosophy but Fabregas had his head turned half way through it and the system never gelled.
    Now we still have a Fabregas System with slight mods. But we don’t have the right players.
    Wenger needs a preseason with his full squad. He needs time to take stock and build a team and fill the philosophy.

    This year he should say that all departures must happen before July 1st or the price automatically goes up to £100m or the player can see out their contract in the reserves until January.
    he should then use the next 2 months to develop his new system and buy the players he needs.

    Maybe he needs to go all in on the youth and build a team and system around Ox –
    Barcelona put that kind of importance on Messi at the same age.

  20. MickyDidIt89 says:

    BR,
    For example, if we go back to the summer and consider this outcome. AW has retained the services of either a fully motivated Cesc or Nasri and added a Mata, do you think we would now be challenging? I do, and I don’t believe these are scenarios he thought improbable.

  21. flintstone says:

    Fallacy to only spend big money to play the title game,but judicial and wise spending,which if Wenger is allowed,should be good enough to compete with any club. The root of all troubles must be the flawed wage structure,with inflated wage-level for youngsters to kill off their hunger as they do not need to compete or progress and become a financial nightmare except for the special few and no near-parity or significant reward for brilliance and hard work to stop talents exiting. Injury problem,like defensive could be ironed out with new or extra help. But this pure business model is a self imposed shackle if the Fair Play Rule has no bite,and with the greasy Blatter sits on top,nothing will happen. And if Wenger who might have made the financial package to convince the board to move to a new stadium,there will be no title in his reign for a long,long time except by some miracle.

  22. MickyDidIt89 says:

    VCC,
    Here’s some stick. I still don’t believe that pic of your tattoo is on your knee or wherever else you claim it to be.

  23. joel says:

    In a time when Manchester United have their weakest team for a decade,Chelsea are “in transition”, Citeh are still restricted by the inabilities of Mancini/Platt/Kidd,Liverpool flatter to deceiver-this Arsenal team are incapable of winning any trophy whatsoever.The squad is paper thin as far as real talent is concerned.There are far too many passengers and “dead wood” abounds.Who on earth could do a better job as a manager of a team who are outclassed by Swansea and outplayed by Fulham,cant beat Wolves when almost every other team can!I don’t know but sooner rather than later i believe we will find out!But one thing is certain he won’t get 7 years of excuses before receiving his marching orders.

  24. TotalArsenal says:

    Micky, Micky :)

    Don’t blame Van Marwijk approaching the final with the only philosophy that could have worked on the day. If you are in a final you want to win it, and the only way to beat the Spanish was the way Van Marwijk approached it on the day, given the sort of players he had available. It almost worked. Van Marwijk has a lot more in his locker though, don’t just judge him on that WC final.

  25. Angelic Beardy says:

    While I agree that there are now 3 clubs in the Premier League with massive financial clout to compete for the EPL title and winning the league seems out of our reach while this remains. It doesn’t excuse the fact that Wenger is tactically useless. He cannot change a game if it is not going our way and there doesn’t ever seem to be any tactics before a game i.e change in formation we play the same way it seems to me against anyone. If we cannot compete financially then we must at least compete tactically and motivate the players we have and also train them the basic rules of defending. Arsene cannot do this in my humble opinion and this is why he should go.

  26. TotalArsenal says:

    LB, forgot to answer your main question: Yes, Arsene can win the league again – no doubt about it.

  27. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Great post LB,
    Agree with Micky, If we would have kept Cesc and Nasri and still added some of the Summer additions, we would be challenging !, but thats a If only. Can we win the EPL again under Wenger ?, absoluteley, but he/board has to speculate to accumalate !, If we are a business like every one seems to think, then lets act like one and invest, Dont tell me we haven`t got the money and all these oil rich clubs cant buy everyone. We will have a great chance next year with some quality additions.

  28. Rasp says:

    Hi glic,

    “We will have a great chance next year with some quality additions.” …. where have I heard that before? :?

    If you accept as I do that the owner and the Board insist that the books balance and we don’t take on any further debt, then we cannot afford the quality additions you crave.

  29. VCC says:

    Micky 10:55. It,s on my right shoulder blade. True story.

  30. chas says:

    LB,
    In answer to the question you pose at the end of the post, the answer is no.

    I find it almost impossible to trust anyone involved in football; FIFA, UEFA, the FA, referees, boards, managers, players, players’ agents, SKY, Talksport, Harry Redknapp and Rosie47. :)

    There’s too much money involved. Carlos Tevez might miss out to the tune of £9.3 million! It’s obscene.

  31. eddie says:

    We have a lot of dead wood on our books and I have supported AW all along but I just dont understand what potential he still sees in players like Diaby, Arshavin, Denilson, Almunia and even Rosicky. Surely the millions from swelling Cesc and Nasri could have been used to get Gotze or Hazard and Podolski.
    It therefore removes the question of affordability from the equation. After all, Cahill went for only 7 million!!

  32. John says:

    We’ll only have the possibility to win the league under Wenger if he has more staying power than Abramowich or Mansour or if the FFP has a real bite. I don’t count on the latter though. Another thought/worry occurred to me: suppose we don’t make the top 4/Champions League this season; will any other Manager than Wenger get us back into it in the foreseeable future on a regular basis?

  33. evonne says:

    LB – absolutely, completely and totally. He is the only manager in EPL that I trust.

    Thanks for great post.

    Only this morning I was talking to some guys ~(at the bookies), 2 Gunners and 1 Spud who suggested that Arsenal need a new manager. I asked them who do they propose for the post. The answer was….wait for it…just wait… David Moyes!

    I left, no point to talk to people who think that Moyes is a better manager than Wenger.

  34. dandan says:

    Smashing thought provoking post LB .
    Yes of course we can win the league again, the dreadful injury run we have had would neuter the ambition of any team, particularly with so many in the one position at full back
    Will AW stay? that is another question, will he get the respect he deserves? The answer to the second question will in my opinion answer the first one.
    (To the regular AA’ers). Sorry for my recent absence, ( if indeed you missed me LOL :-)) but my wife is very poorly at present, I will join in full time when I can, Although I do read the blog most days.

  35. VCC says:

    ev va va va vonne.
    They were having a laugh with you.

  36. evonne says:

    Chas and Micky, and Raddy, and Kelsey – dogs are true friends, cats are lovely, especially my Lilly La La, but dogs are real companions.

    Cats don’t watch footy, whereas my Mio Mio and Hamza love matchdays, they are glued to the screen and jump with me with every goal for us! Honestly, ask Peaches

  37. VCC says:

    dandan. sorry to hear your wife is poorly. Speedy recovery .

  38. chas says:

    Evonne,
    Any tips for us for the 4.40 at Kempton?

  39. gunnerpete says:

    As I and many others said when the fab 6 retired ‘ we will now see just how good Arsene is at creating a new defence’. God its been that long since we had a real defence. Yes I thought when we were invincible that we had a defence but now I think it was because we had a real MF and forward line who could also defend!

    Now Arsene makes do with second rate, second hand players who when they fail, no one wants .Hence the long list of average players on large wages who are loaned out or feign injury for months.

    With ALL are injured fit again I ecpect us to make a fight for fourth and we will all say how great AW is and we will win the lot next year! We wont!

  40. chas says:

    Hope she improves soon, dandan.

  41. Shahr says:

    Arsenal will never win another title as long as Wenger is in charge. There are many reasons.The chief one is tactically he is not astute.It’s very easy to counter him.Another is the defence. He has no eye for the defence. Lastly he buys players for the future when the present is more important.e

  42. TotalArsenal says:

    Hey DanDan, good to see you back here! :) Hope your wife recovers soon. We need your wisdom and confidence in the future here DD!

  43. TotalArsenal says:

    GunnerP, who are you calling second rate of: Sagna, TV, BFG, Koz, Santos? Maybe Gibbs, JD, Miquel and Jenkinson are not to be rated first class at the moment, fair enough, but there is time and room for improvement. Wenger has acted this summer to make changes in defence, so let’s give him time to get his injured defenders back before we make a judgement.

    Of course there are no guarantees we will win the lot next season, but we can have a crack at it. In fact, we can even win something this season!

  44. VCC says:

    chas = Jellicle.

  45. Double98 says:

    Goetse, Hazard – are y’all mad – Wenger never buys players that are on everyones radar… Samir Nasri and Arshavin maybe slight exceptions.

    He will continue to buy Jaques Whodahell from Caen and Phillipe Thewhatnow from St Etienne. and he will convert them from strikers to left backs and right sided midfielders to goalkeepers and 4 years later they will be sought by Barcelona for £20million.

    Thats what he is – he is an artisan – magician and all the guys who demand we buy Eden Hazard etc mean they want him to be a mechanic.
    Well newsflash guys – if Arsenal install a Mechanic as head coach we will always be 6th or worse because right now Chelsea, Mancity, Manutd, Spurs and Liverpool all have more star attraction and they all will pay more than the can afford in wages and transfer fees. We will be left buying Robbie Keanes instead of Oxlade Chamberlains and Christopher Sambas instead of Laurent Koscielnys.

    Wenger is still the best there is… and all the money in Abu Dhabi won’t change that.

  46. Double98 says:

    Shahr – he masterminded an unbeaten season – he has won 2 doubles.
    He has an eye for defence – his philosophy has a weakness that relies on Defenders being intuitive rather than drilled because he needs them doing things other than walking around in a line throwing their arms in the air every 3 minutes.

    Koscielny and Vermaelan are perfect defenders for him, natural and intuitive they can operate as he wants – problem is the fullback crisis which robbed us of vermaelan in the centre.

  47. TotalArsenal says:

    I agree we could do with a couple of quality additions to further improve the squad. Would I opt though for a whole season with just a few short injuries instead of two more additions. You bet I would. The squad itself is pretty complete when not hampered by injury issues. Upfront we are a bit thin, with both Chamakh and Arshavin failing badly at the moment, and Theo not scoring enough currently. So that will need to be addressed, altough this does not necessarily mean buying new players. Are Ryo, the Ox and Campbell ready to step up soon? Maybe even Park will get a proper chance?!

    There is one question I like to ask fellow AAers: what do you call a quality addition? A big name, an Arsene gem-find, an experienced PL player, a supertalent?

  48. Arsedave says:

    LB A fantastic post, well composed to kick the day off.

    The answer is a FAT yes.

    Reasons, because we weren’t far off last season and as stated in a previous post we are only 3 players and £52 million of spending away from having player for player the best 1st XI in the EPL.

    The only slight doubt is that if Man$ity do carry on with their outrageous spending and snap up players like Ronaldo, Robben and Ribery, then we most probably and neither will anyone compete again.

  49. thought provoking would be an understatement…great topic of choice LB and nicely played..
    with your question come many ifs on both sides of the arguement..
    as the team is now id say NO..but the line that seperates us from merely competing in a European spot or winning the actual Premier league is so fine that even wenger has confused himself by overcomplicating things..it could be as simple as a change or fresh face in coaching staff with new ideas and the guts to tinker a bit with our engine..
    too many ifs that we dont know about in terms of finance, the boards policies, politics, power struggles, stubborness what have you…the board have created the rift between fans with their silence, too many factors come into play and the fact that nobody has a clear view of where we are heading and whos in charge..
    the anti wenger brigade who are out for blood make valid points, but only in moments but never seem to back things up with fact, their arguements become shallow..
    and the -in arsene we trust mob (who i proudly am a fan of) can only sit and stare dumb faced wen things go wrong with all fingers pointing at our exhausted manager ..maybe its that ignorance that keeps this club from progressing as i blame the board for most part yet turn a blind eye to a few costly mistakes that wenger may have made (not strengthening the squad wen injuries are way too deep to manage) in favour of blaming anyone else…
    i wish stan would just GROW SOME already and lead us all into some sort of light, but does he really have to?? are they happy with him?? this silence from above is killing us as a club more than anything and we just wont know until 20 yrs later we all decide to buy a copy of wengers autobiography only to say AhhhHH, ahaa i get it now! or friggin hell! how could ya!!!
    so in terms of wenger we as supporters should not judge boo or create any negative vibes at crucial moments and do as he asks in supporting the team and his decisions..come the end of the season we can then make our decisions on where we stand based on how the season played out..(just ridiculous to judge now)
    without any change he wont win the EPL, i believe that the CL is the apple of his eye, but his loyalty shows he only wants to win it with arsenal..
    with minor changes, such as, a new assistant manager(S)..(SAF swaps them around like whoo-haas), or a different approach in our transfer approach (getting in early) and most importantly, a willingness to tinker with the formation to get the best out of players..if any or all these things happen then YES he will win the EPL again and not just 1 or 2..he’ll sign on on get that apple he wants badly, the CL. but things need to change even with wenger (hand on my heart) being in charge and the best man for the jon regardless… sorry for the rant, frustrating times without facts!!!

  50. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Great post LB.

    I will keep it short.

    Arsenal and Arsene will win the league next season, i am convinced of this. It will also be the beggining of a new era which will match the clubs 1930,s domination.

  51. D98 @11.56am,

    Comment of the day so far..Love it!!

  52. TotalArsenal says:

    rURp you made a fine comment yourself @12.14 :)

  53. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Hi Rasp,
    We are good at balancing the books, I agree, But from what I read , we have plenty of cash for some investment. I cant say whether thats correct or not, but I`m going go with the positive side and think It Is, simply because we were told the move to the Emirates was the way to help and make us compete with Man Utd etc.
    Arsedave seems to think the same, some spending to do.
    As does Micky, he expects/wants some quality in.
    TMHT, he thinks were going to challenge even without the investment, but he is, as we know, Mad. :)
    Whatever happens I will still be behind the Manager and the team , as abuse does not help in the slightest, If were playing crap, we need to lift them until we lose our voices.

  54. hey Total, @12.11pm,

    in answer to your question, can we choose ‘any or all as long as they fit the system’.. i dont think weve had a true balance at arsenal for yrs.. it seems as though our first team and bench players hav an A and B system rather than a complete squad, maybe that is arsenes way of ticking over the machine till the economics and politics of it all kick in..but we dont have a kanu to come from the bench and save a game with a hat trick and since fabregas left we never replaced that sort of creative flair, regardless of price and injuries..ramsey should never be flying solo this season, a player in that position and mould will only get better with the people he plays with ie fabregas had viera for a long time, jack had fabregas, ramsey has nobody, with arteta holding more than id like..
    so in that regard experience!! for the right positon of course..but you know that an arsene-gem find is quality any day of the week, unfortunately they dont all come to the fore at the same time to challenge..make any sense? ;-)

  55. Double98 says:

    Thanks RURP – i would echo TA on your own comment…

    Arsene will pull one out of his hat soon enough…

    Maybe i am delusional but i’d rather be wrong about having wenger than wrong about getting rid of him.
    Without him is a road into the wilderness – and we’d be entrusting not david dein but two americans – Kroenke and Gazidaz with the task of naming his successor. Who? Bruce Arena?

    Wenger may need to think about succession planning and i would love to see him bring back the Iceman as his number two…

  56. Red Arse says:

    I was a bit late in reading the Post this morning/afternoon, and the best compliment I can pay you LB is that it could have been Rocky who wrote it. Excellent! :-)

    We can and will win the EPL again with AW, it is all a matter of timing.
    The older guys on here may well relate to the fact that after years of paying off their mortgages, there comes a point when they can/could afford bigger, better holidays etc, as the demands of repayments reduced.

    The same will happen to Arsenal in the relatively near future.

    Rasper, you have mentioned your doubts over AW, but then say later:
    – “If you accept as I do that the owner and the Board insist that the books balance and we don’t take on any further debt, then we cannot afford the quality additions you crave.”

    That implies AW is not to blame for the lack of player investments, and it seems odd to blame him for the present circumstances.

    Welcome back, Dandan, :-) I hope your circumstances soon improve, and wish your wife well, of course!

  57. 200% with you on that D98…

  58. Big Raddy says:

    GunnerPete seems to have forgotten the Invincibles defence.

    Still anything to beat AW with……

    D98. I like your comment re: Artisan. Perhaps AW could get a mechanic to assist him when Pat Rice retires.

  59. Rasp says:

    glic @12:43

    Thanks for the reply. The accountants on here regularly prove that the pot to buy players and pay their wages is much smaller than many assume – maybe £30m ish. This will improve when we can renegotiate some of the commercial deals in a couple of years time.

  60. Afternoon all, challenging headline post there LB (BTW why the change from London and what does LB stand for?) and my answer would be “possible but unlikely”.

    Now I’m going to make myself unpopular here (for a change :) ) and say that I am neither a Wengerite or a member of the “Arsene out” brigade.

    I am an Arsenal fan first and last so the above distinction has no resonance for me.

    Also, if we are saying that only money will win you the league then it is indeed sad and it reminds me of what I said a while back where if FFP is not effective, we may as well dispense with playing the 38 matches in a season and just get the club treasurers of each of the 20 clubs to turn up at the beginning of the season with a copy of the clubs latest bank statement.

    That way we can cut out “the middle man” and leave the year free to watch highlights of pre-premiership seasons where it WAS more about strength/skill on the pitch.

  61. Red Arse says:

    In the press today it is widely reported that Real Madrid want AW to replace Moanhino.

    What does one of the world’s top clubs know about choosing the best managers — like AW? (rhetorical question – to avoid doubt).

    How many times in the last few months have we heard ‘AW should buy *Hazard/Goetze/Mezul/Mata* ” (choose your own).

    Then they fail to explain how AW can do that when often either the players’ own clubs do not want to sell them, or the players concerned want to play for Barca/Real/Milan instead. [See also:- Nasri, Cesc, Ronaldo, Tevez etc who will leave a club as and when they want].

    Boring details I know, but that is the reality I am afraid.

  62. TotalArsenal says:

    RurP, good point about getting the balance right. You see, I think Arsene/Gazidis are now trying to achieve that with the arrivals of Mertesacker, Santos and Arteta (experience/maturity), Jenkinson/The OX/Campbell (top talent), the promotion of Miquel and Coquelin (youth development) and Gervinho (gem). Add one more experienced player and one more Arsene-gem to bolster our attack in the next six months, and we will be cooking with gas.

    Ramsey is benefiting from Song and Arteta’s support a lot, so I am not too worried about him. As soon as Jack is back it will all fall into place in midfield. I am mainly worried about Chamakh and Arshavin, but I have no doubt that we can resolve this in the next 6 months. We need to find your ‘Kanu-type’ and another gem ala Gervinho. £25-30m at the most and we are done :)

  63. Nick says:

    I can honestly see us winning the league given 2 things that need to happen.

    1: Stay relatively injury free for @ least 3/4 of the season. The important thing is to have a squad in place over the summer, train together and go on preseason together and start the season together injury free. No more signings 2 weeks into the season like we did this year.

    2: Bring in 3-4 players at key positions we are currently lacking at in the time-frame I listed above. Offload those who are just no cutting it anymore. Buying in 19 year olds from lower leagues isn’t gonna cut it. If it’s a young player that we bring in they need to be highly regarded and experienced in a top league. Neymar, Reus, Gotze, etc. come to mind. RVP needs a strike partner, not a back-up. We need a rock solid defense and we need a great creative CM to run the ball through the midfield.

  64. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Fair enough rasp,
    So I`d like one “Super Quality” £30M or three £10M rough diamonds!. :)
    To tell the truth, When we moved stadiums I thought It would be over Ten years before we would reach the heights of our glory years, but have got caught up in the unrealistic expectations of the “we want it now ” brigade, so to keep us in the CL for 14 years against what others have spent is amazing, so maybe a “fallow” period next year will help in the long run. I hope FPP works and If It doesn`t, well , whether we like It or not, we can always sell our soul`s to the devil like others.
    But be wary of them Accountants, trusting them would be like trusting John Terry with your Wife, especially the one`s with telescope`s, they`ll want your money and your wife. That Adam Ant was a Highwayman Accountant, “stand and deliver, your money and your wife ” :lol:

  65. Ash says:

    Good article.

    I consider myself a fan of AW. I don’t think he is bigger than the club, in fact, right now, I consider him Arsenal. The Arsenal I support, and admire, is Wenger’s Arsenal. He has more passion for the club than the people who own it, I don’t think there is anyone else employed by Arsenal, that has as much passion, and works as hard as him for the club, and this is the person people want to get rid of?

    I would love to see Wenger at arsenal until he decides to retire, and when that day comes, it will be a sad day.

    I cant for the life of me see how anyone else can come in, and just magically compete with teams like the cash strapped Man City, i mean seriously, the fact that we are where we are, given the money and team we have is down to AW. How many teams have spent more than us, and done less?

    After AW we will have mercenary managers, they will come, fail to compete, fail to buy they’re way out of trouble, and lift a cup, and move on. Is this what you want?

    Had Chelsea, Man City, Tottenham, Man United, Real Madrid and the like not spent ridiculous amounts of money they never had, do you truly believe they would be as good as they are?

    (Take into consideration, how the cash injections these teams have, affect our power to sign players too)

    Let them spend, we will still compete at the highest level with what we have.
    To the impatient, to the greedy, we are weak, we are not contenders, but to those, the many who are similar to us, we are heroes, we are a spectacle, we are ARSENAL!

  66. LB says:

    I feel really uplifted by how many people have come on and emphatically said: yes, Arsene can still win the league and by that I assume they mean that he can still win it even being as financially handicapped as he is, good for all of you I say.

    Chary, I changed it from London to the initials of my name which is Lee Barrett hence LB, I was also a huge Liam Brady fan.

  67. Nick says:

    Xherdan Shaqiri is being offered up by FC Basel to Galatasaray and the deal’s falling through. He’s very talented, young and he ran United ragged in the CL. So of course Man U. are interested and gonna go after him. Arsenal need to step in and make a signing like Shaqiri this Jan. Build on it the rest of this season and add in a few more while offloading a few in the summer.

    A midfield of Shaqiri, Arteta, Song and Wilshire would do us very well till the end of the season and IMO help us into 4th place.

  68. Herb'sArmy says:

    Was that “twice the wage”, LB? ‘Double your money, no questions asked’ sort of deal? How much does one man need for doing something most of us would do for nothing?
    After over 30 years in the game and 50,000 substitutions, he’s obviously worth every sheckle.

  69. Rasp says:

    Hi Nick,

    Shaqiri is a fantastic player (although who knows whether he can reproduce his forn in the premiership) and would be a brilliant signing for us. Big, fast strong, excvellent shot, can head the ball – he’s just what we need up front. Arshavin out and Shaqiri in would be excellent business.

  70. TotalArsenal says:

    Bring it on Ash! :)

  71. Zack says:

    I don’t think wenger can stil do anything in the Epl.this is because he bluntly frowns at spending cash that doesn’t belong to him.he has the capability of recognising good players bt the ability to pay is lacking.

  72. Ah right LB, thanks for clearing that up.

  73. Red Arse says:

    Well said, Ash! :-)

  74. total,
    hmm..still not satisfied with the ramsey/midfield dept.. i cant really define their positions and purpose anymore! lets take jack out of the equation for a second..is song our defensive midfielder, how far does he push up, does arteta hold or release, and should ramsey push as far forward as he does at the risk of losing the ball and exposing song to cheap fouls nd costly yellows..
    we as fans seem to know and pick where certain players seem to fit nd play best but our midfielders are all similar and no one stands out, apart from ramseys lungs and age..all three (ARS) can play deep, go forward and inconsistently create magic but they dont have a fixed role and maybe that lack of faith in “whos covering me, or should i push up?” is causing an imbalance and confusion..
    ramsey should not be learning from song, song must sit deep almost ala de jong style until our youth develop a season longer..
    ramsey is considered to be an answer to the void left by cesc but we dont hav that experienced player to guide ramsey..arteta can do it, in fact i thought that would be key to goals with ramsey as an understudy but he sits way too deep..in fact hes had to as a reaction to injuries..
    by the way? wot role will jack play wen he gets back, can he play in the hole..do we build a team around him, whilst tinkering with the ox??
    and as much as i admire and trust wenger, why does he not cover injuries..just for loan even? couple seasons back we were short on CD with only Squillacci available..the cost for not covering wen song had to play as centre half cost us the EPL that yr, after the doubt creeped in nd we imploded..ok forgiven..this season a tragedy hit our LB, RB..was it hard to get a loan to cover, even as insurance in case we got the recovery time lines all wrong again? this time around, that little mistake could be even more costly??
    so is it the board?? i mean, surely there is a danijel Pranjic sitting on a bayern bench waiting on a free somewhere?? that position(s) will cost us big this year..we need answers to be able to unify again, such is the abuse without knowledge!!

  75. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Ash, Great Great Great post.

    We will win the league next season for many reasons, but the main one is because we have Arsene Wenger as manager.

  76. Double98 @12.01 Excellent comment :)

  77. TotalArsenal says:

    rURp, a small tip: try to use paragraphs when you write a comment. It would be a lot easier on the eye (we are both not champions of brevity :) )

    You hit on an important point though. Where should Ramsey play and who is doing what. At the moment, ARS functions best when all are fit and free to organise things between them. For me, the games against Dortmund and Marseille were the highlights of the season and the ARS was the driving, dominant force.

    I personally prefer 4-4-2 with RvP infront of the Ox (idea stolen from Micky) and Gervinho – Ramsey/Wilshere – Song/Arteta – Theo in the ’4′. But that is not Wenger’s style anymore. So in a 4(5)3-3 it needs to be different. We either continue with the current multi-disciplined/multi-functional wall of three, and Wilshire will fit into that well, or we go back to last season’s 4-2-3-1, with Song and Arteta in the ’2′ and either Ramsey or Wilshere properly in the middle of the ’3′. I think they can both play there, but Wilshere is my preference. However, I think they are both not ready for that position yet, as we do not only need assists and vision from that position but also goals. I believe Wenger is struggling at the moment with his formation and it will be interesting to see what he will do in the next four months, especially if and when Jack returns.

  78. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Ash, gem. :)
    Anyway , have we bought anyone yet ? :)
    I`m getting so excited about Sunday I`m climbing the ceiling`s.
    spidergooner, spidergooner, does what ever a spidergooner does………… :shock:

  79. LB says:

    Herb

    Top answer and by the way I apologise for my outburst that day, you have been far more dignified than I am sure I would have.

  80. Big Raddy says:

    Ash. Top comment. How about writing an Arsenal Arsenal post?

    Be Our Guest – top of the page.

  81. Herb'sArmy says:

    LB

    I don’t bear you any grudge or ill-will, supporting Arsenal as we do, invokes much passion and debate, and we all know there are many questions that remain unanswered, mostly from the BoD.
    More and more ex-players are questioning the club’s direction, so it is imperitive that either Ivan Gazidis or Stan Kroenke speak, so we know where the club is heading.
    If we look at how Tottenham are doing, (it’s been a while since we beat them in the league), then naturally we look to be in decline. Does Arsene Wenger still have the ability, or the energy to arrest this slide? Only time will tell. He is an honourable, principled man, but he’ll need more than that if he is to turn our fortunes around.

  82. Big Raddy says:

    Some good football this evening. Pt 2 of the Diving contest in Spain, Pt 2 of the Diving contest in Liverpool and the Diving Contest in Africa.

    Does anyone know if TH is fit for Sunday? Or Arteta?

  83. RedandDread says:

    In all honesty as much as I would like Arsene to win another League title, I can’t see it happening for the following reasons.

    1. The competition is much more fierce now (City & Spurs now make it a genuine top 6).

    2. Arsene has adopted a philosophy (the youth project) that has failed to produce a team capable of winning the league for the last 4 years. How he rectifies this in the short term, only Divine one knows.

    3. Arsene has banked the clubs future and his own legacy on a group of players simply not good enough (nor loyal) enough to win the title.

    4. Arsene’s tactics and negligence of certain key areas of the team have cost the club dear in recent times and what we are seeing now is a culmination of the errors he has made in the last few years.

    5. His total control of the club means that there is only ONE voice-(sometimes two heads are better than one) and he is allowed to rule his kingdom without fear of losing his job. He is a benevolent dictator and it’s HIS way or the highway. Unfortunately HIS way has not worked for a long time now.

    6. Facts speak louder than words and Arsenal despite their flirtations with the top of the table in recent seasons have folded spectacularly when it really mattered-a trend that has been evident since his last (near) great side in 2007-2008. A trend that sickeningly continues to this day.

    7. His ability to motivate his team and get them to perform consistently to their (supposed) abilities has been found wanting in recent years.

    The recent anti-Wenger rhetoric is just a culmination of fans seeing our team take continued backward steps each year despite Arsene telling us each year that “this” would be the year. Unfortunately people are just are fed up with his “spin”.

    He has done a marvelous job at the club but when you see your team further from the pinnacle than at any team in recent history one has to “wake up and smell the coffee”.

    Arsene ain’t bringing home the title anytime soon.

    Now make me eat my words Arsene……if only

  84. total,
    thank you for clarifying that nd realise with your educated views that we are on the same wave length wen delving into football knowledge..

    next paragraph ;-) the statement on ramsey/wilshere not being ready for that position echoes my thoughts..

    why havnt we considered an experienced player signing or possibly given aa23 a start there in a 4-2-3-1 in the absence of jack/lack of funds needed to sign a player/lack of defensive qualities of aa23 out wide?

    this transition phase is not gelling well with a fear of either losing out in europe or even worse top players..

    will RVP leave if we concede CL and if we survive ( i believe wengers touch and class will prevail) will he have enough faith in jack n the likes to sign on in the hopes of legendary status?

    i fear with jack and aaron still a bit raw and maybe losing RVP we will be 2 steps back!!

    i realise you may not have all the answers, but these things iritate me in our decision making process wether it be team management or board?

    hope that was easy on the eye mate :-)

  85. Herb'sArmy says:

    Raddy,

    In respect of the gravity that Friday holds for you, I hope all goes as well as it can, given the circumstances.

  86. Nick says:

    Thanks Rasp!

    Shaqiri is a very strong bulldog type of build and has an incredible first touch, his vision is superb and I really love the way he moves off the wings for shots on goal (reminds me a lot of Arjen Robben!).
    I think a player of his pace and skill, much like what we see with Ox could only do us good and I have no doubts he could prove his quality in the EPL.

  87. chas says:

    Wow, some top quality comments in response to a top quality post.

    The positivity of some has almost convinced me we’re going to win the league THIS season. :)

    D98,
    Loving the Arsene as artisan as opposed to Arry the grease monkey analogy.

  88. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Terry Transplant,
    Your optimism is so infectious.
    We’re gunner win the CL this season. Obviously. I’ve already booked the hotel. Then we will win the League next season. Obviously. After that, there will be a period of domination (not your sort glic) 1930′s style where we win everything. Obviously.

  89. LB says:

    Herb

    If you want to know the way I feel, read Ash’s comment at 1.39, it is a mini master piece.

  90. kelsey says:

    LB,

    I wouldn’t expect anything else from you and you raise some very interesting points. i didn’t know your post was going up today and left (as usual) a fairly long post as i see the present situation earlier today.

    Will we ever win the League again under Wenger ? Well yes or No is my answer.
    reading LG today the headline post makes some unbelievable statements, one including that AW controls the purse strings on transfer fees and wages, and I believe that is not correct.

    I think some of the buys since we last won the trophies haven’t worked out as the character and greed by some players was not forseen and they used Arsenal as a stepping stone to better things. 4 of them went to City purely for the money for a the time City had won nothing.

    Chelsea have had 8 managers since Abramovich took over and I think there is a good arguement that though they have won a few trophies they could and should have done better.

    A great team regardless of cost needs little management and what i see now is a team with not much motivation and often very lethargic in their approach. is that down to Wenger, I really don’t know.

    my main objective would to see Wenger buy from within the PL a lot more than he has done, and change his game plan as results this season show that on many weekends there is very little between all the PL teams.

    Just two signings of quality would do the trick but I doubt we will be a real force again before AW either resigns or the media actually foce him out. Those scenes last Sunday must have made him feel sick and maybe that will give him a jolt one way or another.

  91. TotalArsenal says:

    Robin, as easy as Shakira in the She Wolf vid! ;)

    A while ago, I wrote a post on AA in the hole. Arsene has never considered it and the only reason I can think of is that the pocket Russian has not enough stamina for the role. As GiE would call it: you cannot have a passenger in such a role.

    It is very hard to buy a player for that role. There are very few quality hole-players about and with Jack and Ramsey in the waiting room, can we afford to spend a lot of money on somebody like Gotze or Hazard who might just as easy need a few years to really claim it. There just is not an easy answer, but if there is one thing that Arsene will want to sort out and is capable to sort out, it is this. It will just need a bit of time.

    Re RvP, who knows what will keep him here. We might win the CL and the FA-cup this year and he might still decide to spend the rest of his career in Spain.

    Whether we like it or not, it is a transitional year for Arsenal and with that we will experience further lows and hopefully a few highs. The future remains bright though!

  92. gunnern5 says:

    Ash says:

    January 25, 2012 at 1:39 pm

    Good article.

    I consider myself a fan of AW. I don’t think he is bigger than the club, in fact, right now, I consider him Arsenal. The Arsenal I support, and admire, is Wenger’s Arsenal. He has more passion for the club than the people who own it, I don’t think there is anyone else employed by Arsenal, that has as much passion, and works as hard as him for the club, and this is the person people want to get rid of ?

    …………………………………………………………………………………………..

    Ash,

    I am in sync with you on the majority of your post, with the exception of the above comment.

    I give you Pat Rice – in 14 years he appeared in 397 games as an Arsenal player and was Captain from 1977. He played in 5 FA Cup finals, a Cup winners cup final and the 1970/71 double season.

    He has since been in a managerial role for the past 28 years.

    42 years with the Arsenal and still going strong, I don’t know of any other team in the PL where anybody has that amount of tenure – now that’s what I call passion.

  93. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Bloody hell Ash,
    That last line of your 1:39 is the greatest line I have read on here.
    Brilliant.

  94. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Ash 1:39 “To the impatient, to the greedy, we are weak, we are not contenders, but to those, the many who are similar to us, we are heroes, we are a spectacle, we are ARSENAL!”

    Fabulous line

  95. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Micky,

    I agree we will win the Champions League this season. You are a very wise man for booking that hotel.

    On a side note, i do very much enjoy infecting people. hahahaha.

  96. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Right. Empowered to this level by Transplant and Ash, I’m off to invade somewhere.

  97. LB says:

    Kelsey

    I appreciate your reply but I am slightly crest fallen that my headline post isn’t persuasive enough to conclusively make the point to you that Wenger is no longer able to buy one quality player from the EPL let alone two of them as you would like. The other thing I seemed to have failed to do is make clear that I cannot see him being able to do so for…….well, ever.

  98. Herb'sArmy says:

    LB

    I could counter that and say read ‘RedandDreads’ 2.43. That’s where we’re at right now, and there are as many ‘RedandDreads’ as there are people like Ash. As many people want Wenger gone as want him to stay. Both make equally compelling arguments, and all we have to go on is what is presented to us, and where we currently sit in the PL.
    Who can put their hand on their heart and say we weren’t expecting to lose on Sunday? Yes the full-back situation has de-railed us, but in all honesty we should have better back-ups than Jenkinson (too young) and Gibbs (forever injured).
    Culpability has to start somewhere, and if our players aren’t strong enough to withstand the demands of PL football, something must be wrong with our set-up. Our injuries always seem to affect us more than other club’s injuries affect theirs, and it’s been going on too long for it to be sheer coincidence.

  99. RockyLives says:

    LB
    What a clever, clever question.
    My first reaction was “of course we can win the EPL again under AW…if… and if… and if…”
    In the end I realised there were two many ifs.
    My heart wants to scream “yes” but my head is whispering “no”.
    Deep down I have a nagging fear that our wonderful French manager has lost something along the way, something that will prevent him ever lifting a title again.

    But, as you say, having reached that conclusion what’s a chap to do?

    Just support the team and the boss 100%, same as it ever was.

  100. Double98 says:

    AAAAASSSSSHHHHHH
    1.39

    i wanna hit a spurs fan…..

    Get in the dressing room this week and give that Al Pacino speech

  101. RockyLives says:

    RedandDread
    I’d like to compliment you on your 2.43
    You make many of the points that the “Arsene Haters” make, but you have done it without bile, and with plenty of respect for the man and what he has done.
    That is how criticism should be delivered.

  102. Double98 says:

    RockyLives

    My Head said no when Ian Rush Scored in the Littlewoods cup final.
    My Head said no when we had to go to anfield in1989 and win by 2 clear goals
    My Head said no when we were 11 points behind Man United in 1998
    My head said no when Wenger said we can go though an entire season unbeaten.

    My heart said “yes, yes, yes and HELL YES”

    Arsenal FC – Shutting heads up since 1886

  103. RockyLives says:

    Double :)
    Although my heart and head both said “yes” in ’87 and ’89 in particular.
    Possibly something to do with the amount of alcohol involved (I was at Wembley for the ’87 final but in a state of enlightened happiness thanks to a boozing session that had started with a champagne breakfast at 9am).

  104. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    My Head, Heart and considerable Gonads says yeeessssss.

  105. Arsenal FC – Shutting heads up since 1886

    D98, On fire 2day!!

  106. ONE says:

    Micky,
    I think some of that “domination” would “go down” well in the Arsenal boardroom. :)
    Now, Terry MADcini, in yourMADcap MADe MADhouse eating MADeira cake after a MADras. You talk MADdening MADness, your MADDer than the MADdest MADman this side of MADrid.
    You need to give some detailed backup for your claims of Arsenal domination !

    Kind regards, your brother, Elizabeth 2nd

  107. Nick says:

    D98, well said! Hoping my head shuts up soon, It’s been hurting for 3 weeks straight.

  108. RockyLives says:

    Terry
    Don’t think you can get away that easily.
    Head shmead. Heart shmeart. Gonads sh… er…nadgers.

    Crucially, what does the TRANSPLANT say?

  109. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    chas, what are you saying ?, Terry is now, Gonad Man…cini ! :)

  110. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Cornwall, ime in the middle of doing some rather nasty mans Tax Return in which mistakes will be punnished by a concrete slab and the River Thames.

    Any way , if i escape the concrete, i will write an article explaining my crazy views.

  111. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Thanks for the Vid Chas.hahaha.

    Rocky, the Transplant always says yes, if he ever says no i threaten him with return of the Wig.

  112. Red Arse says:

    D98, @ 3:32,

    Excellent! :-)

    That’s the heads taken care of – now for GLIC’s tails and TerryM’s toupe! :-)

  113. evonne says:

    ASH – oh dear me, you are my hero!
    Come back, I want to read more of your comments!
    This is like a new chapter in the Bible:

    “To the impatient, to the greedy, we are weak, we are not contenders, but to those, the many who are similar to us, we are heroes, we are a spectacle, we are ARSENAL!”

  114. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Possibly two of the best comments I`ve read since coming on here @ Ash and D98.
    For all our differances, be they Pro or Anti Arsene or anything else, Whenever they play we should all be as one in our support for the team, whether they are playing good or bad, the good vibes they feel from us is vital in lifting them.

    Apart from if Jeff Blockley plays, well, I have to draw the line somewhere !

  115. Red Arse says:

    GN5,

    Have just opened your spreadsheet for the end of season run in and I am really impressed with your neat and easy to read layout.

    Thanks, again. :-)

  116. Big Raddy says:

    Herb. Thanks for your good wishes

  117. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Wish I could write some of that Churchillian sort of stuff !
    Oh Yes !

  118. Red Arse says:

    Ash,

    Could I slightly dicker with your masterpiece?

    Unfortunately, you have missed out an integral portion of the fanbase (who are mainly, if not exclusively, to be found on here).

    Therefore could you slightly amend the wording of the last sentence in your rallying call to include that rabelaisian tho’ noble group.

    “To the impatient and the greedy, we are weak; we are not contenders; but to the many who are similar to us, we are heroes; we are a spectacle; we are cuckoo; we are the ARSENAL!”

    Thank you, sir! :-)

  119. Big Raddy says:

    Some fantastic stuff on the site today, and good to see many new faces (gravatars)

    I suggested yesterday that if Harry were AFC manager and is found guilty then he would be sacked. Do you think I am right?

    Do you think AW would be sacked had he committed the same crime? (allegedly)

  120. RockyLives says:

    GLIC
    What’s Na$ri’s favourite line from Churchill?

    Answer: “We shall fight them on the benches…”

  121. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Talking of fighting, what’s going on with Balotelli?
    Used to love him as I like a rebel with talent, but his head stamp has changed all that. Now he is a coward and a thug.

  122. evonne says:

    Dandan – buziaki i usciski dla Pani Ani xx

  123. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Given that City would no longer see us as a threat, could we find a home for Tevez for a few months?

  124. evonne says:

    Micky – if you only listened to me, you would know Balotteli is a thug. His agent threatens to take him out of UK if ‘bullying of his client continues’

  125. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Evonne,
    Bullying of his client?

  126. evonne says:

    Yes Micky. The agent recons that Balotteli is being bullied in England

  127. evonne says:

    4 match ban starting tonight
    and persecution interview, just for you Micky
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/16707566.stm

  128. Big Raddy says:

    I am a big fan of Balotelli but am happy he is not an Arsenal player.

    He is great fun in an era completely lacking in characters,

  129. evonne says:

    Raddy – honestly, Balotteli is a dickhead, not a character :) I said it long ago – there is something wrong with any man that can have such elaborate hair cut and I was proven right, of course

  130. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Hi Super,
    I know Tevez spells trouble, but he doesn’t half give his all once the whistle blasts, and he is very very good. Just a short term idea.
    Evonne/BR,
    Until sunday, I was 100% in the Raddy camp regarding Balotelli, but Evonne has been proven right. That head stamp was cowardly. Why I ever question her Ladyship’s opinion I don’t know.

  131. RockyLives says:

    evonne
    so right about Balotelli.
    I’ve never forgiven him for being so ungracious towards our Jack when Balo won that Euro young player award with Jack as runner-up.

  132. RockyLives says:

    I would take Tevez in a heartbeat if we could get him for any affordable kind of loan deal.

    He’s a brilliant player and he has a lot to prove.

  133. chas says:

    BR,
    I think the answers to your questions are yes and yes.
    I’m not sure the spuds will sack him even if he goes down for a few weeks (not that that would happen). They can’t believe their luck the position they find themselves in and would not want to undermine it from within.

  134. VCC says:

    chas…. did you back the winner in the 1:40 at Kempton?

  135. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    If he goes in the nick then getting sacked is the last of Harrys problems. I suspect the delights of shower time and the slipage of the soap will prey more heavily on his mind.

  136. chas says:

    I didn’t mate, though I did check the odds after your red-hot tip. At 11-10 I couldn’t put enough on to make a trip to the bookies worthwhile!

  137. chas says:

    I did check the result though. I would have put money on Blue Barbarella. I always had a thing for Jane Fonda way back.

  138. evonne says:

    Rocky – yes, I remember that incident too. Tevez is a bit simple, but all right and great player, bring him on

    Micky – now that we have established I am always right, please don’t emigrate. I would hate the thought of not ever watching corners being taken at the Ems

  139. chas says:

    Evonne, what were you doing in the bookies?

  140. VCC says:

    chas.. you could get 11-8 first thing this morning.

  141. chas says:

    Barry’s started diving already or playacting at least.

  142. evonne says:

    Chas – I like to have a bet or two. If a horse has the same name as one of my animals then I usually have a fiver. And I always bet Arsenal to win the league. And always will.

  143. chas says:

    Did you win?
    100% handball.

  144. evonne says:

    Ahhhhh the wisdom of the ages.

    .
    A female CNN journalist heard about a very old Jewish man who had been going to the Wailing Wall in Jerusalem to pray, twice a day, every day, for a long, long time.

    To check it out, she went to the Wall, and there he was, walking slowly up to the holy site.

    She watched him pray, and after about 45 minutes, when he turned to leave, using a cane and moving very slowly, she approached him for an interview.

    “Pardon me Sir, I’m Rebecca Smith from CNN. What’s your name?

    “Morris Feinberg,” he replied

    “Sir, how long have you been coming to the Wailing Wall to pray?”

    “For about 60 years.”

    “60 years! That’s amazing! What do you pray for?”

    “I pray for peace between the Christians, Jews and the Muslims.”

    “I pray for all the wars and all the hatred to stop.”

    “I pray for all our children to grow up safely as responsible adults, and to love their fellow man.”

    “And how do you feel Sir, after doing this for 60 years?”

    “It’s like talking to a fucking brick wall.”

  145. evonne says:

    Chas – yep, handball all right. Did you see the ref celebrating after Strevie scored???!!!!

    Sometimes I win, mostly I lose. Raddy gave me a great tip once, I won then

  146. chas says:

    Really, Phil Dowdy?

    Richards was trying to block the ball by raising his arms.
    What difference does it make if it hit his foot first and then his arm blocks it?
    God I hate Citeh and the FFBW so much!

  147. evonne says:

    Chas – I hate FFT :) Micah made himself as big as a goalkeeper.

    I am jesting, the ref raised his both arms which only looked as if he ws celebrating :)

  148. chas says:

    Haha, I believed you.
    I’m sure he celebrated a couple of Newcastle’s goals against us last season. Must have had a bet on!

  149. evonne says:

    Got you for that ‘slad’ jibe :)

  150. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Just back from my Grand Daughter`s 4th Birthday party, cake was lovely, Didn`t understand why It had Fork Handle`s ?.
    Loaned Tevez !, I want to buy him !.

  151. chas says:

    I’d forgotten about that.
    I think ‘jibe’ is a bit strong.
    Tiny, wickle leg pull, maybe.

    What’s wrong with me, cheering Liverpool and a Bellamy goal. :)

  152. chas says:

    Have you got any ‘O’ s ?

  153. VCC says:

    chas wash your mouth out with soap and water.

  154. evonne says:

    Chas – is jibe a strong word? I didn’t know that.
    I am pleased Pool are winning
    Bellamy is a great player and always gives 100%

  155. evonne says:

    Who said famously:
    ‘Mancini – great hair, nice scarf, avarage manager’ ?

  156. chas says:

    Micky?

  157. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Chas :)
    I cant believe thats as long ago as 1976.
    There`s a shop in Launceston called Bickles and It Is just like that !.

  158. chas says:

    glic,
    We had one up the road until about 6 months ago.
    It’s now a coffee shop/deli.

    evonne,
    I was just teasing, I think jibe can mean
    “scoff – taunt – sneer – ridicule – mockery – jeer”
    none of which I was doing.

    Harry’s problem is his accent. Hahahahahaha.

    http://www.sportinglife.com/football/news/story_get.cgi?STORY_NAME=soccer/12/01/25/SOCCER_Redknapp.html&TEAMHD=soccer&BID=165

  159. chas says:

    What a goal from the Catalan Diving Champions!

  160. TotalArsenal says:

    Evonne @9.37 I think it was BR who said that :)

    MC –> £800m investment – out of CL, out of FA Cup, out of CC- cup and it is not eve February :lol:

  161. Gooner In Exile says:

    Ok read tho post this morning, and haven’t been around to comment all day. Terrific post LB, and yes in Wenger I still trust.

    Glutton for punishment, blinded by past glories call it what you will I will always have an immense respect for what he turned Arsenal Football Club into.

    Ok I haven’t got time to catch up on the comments right now, be back later. Shite day at work!

  162. chas says:

    My brothers have a Man Citeh bet.
    If Citeh win one comp, no money changes hands.
    Younger bro wins bet if they win two comps.
    Older bro wins bet if they win nowt.

    I’d be so pleased if Na$ri won nothing.
    But when all’s said and done he won’t give a f*ck, cos he only went for the money anyway.

  163. Big Raddy says:

    What a finish from Alves.

    Pepe cheating again. If Moaninho was a man manager and not a media star he would drop him

  164. TotalArsenal says:

    has, I also hope your older, and obviously wisest, bro will win that bet :)

    Why did you not join the bet?

  165. chas says:

    TA,
    I was enjoying the chat too much to intervene. :)
    I can’t remember when the bet was made. I think it was in December before the FA cup 3rd round draw and with them already in the CC semis.

  166. TotalArsenal says:

    I reckon Liverpool will kick MU out of the FA cup and QPR will do the same to Chelsea, maybe even Watford will kick the Spuds into cheesy mash! Good opportunity for Arsenal to go all the way this year.

  167. Gooner In Exile says:

    What a top days blogging I’ve missed.

    Well done LB for bringing some lurkers out of the woodwork to comment.

    Thanks Ash for a fantastic comment, and as others have said last paragraph that should now be inscribed on the outside of the Emirates or maybe it can replace the Wonder of You, short sweet and rebel rousing.

    A small comment that i find had to get over is that Wenger needs finances to get us over the finishing line again, and that the has put too much faith in some of our players over the years.

    Well i am in the camp that firmly believes that when Wenger hands over the reigns the new manager will have very little spending to do. He will have a group of players probably half or more schooled at Arsenal for many years complimented by some of the most exciting talent. If we can bring the current group of youngsters to fruition we will dominate for a while. But we fans may have o be patient and may have to spend a couple of seasons out of the CL.

    Why do Madrid want Wenger, well maybe they have realised they need to create their own, FFP round the corner and a string of managers only interested in what happens when they are in charge. I don’t think Wenger could do what he has done at Arsenal in Madrid for one main reason, time. Wenger has given us a youth academy with the help of Brady, Bould and Banfield that is starting to develop real homegrown talent.

    Wilshere, Frimpong, Yennaris, Bartley, Afobe, Lansbury (hopefully), Coquelin, Gibbs, Szczesny, and the list goes on. Put them alongside Koz, TV5, Mert, RvP and Arteta for a few years then watch them fly. A team that when listening to Ash’s comments would fly out of a changing room and devour everything before them.

  168. goonermichael says:

    Henry Winter @henrywinter
    Reply RetweetedRetweet
    Delete
    FavoritedFavorite · Close Open Details That was the fourth penalty Phil Dowd has given to #lfc in the last six games he has officiated of theirs.

    I don’t think we’ll win the league under Wenger but in the post there was no mention af the red mancs. They have managed to beat the chavs (3 years in a row). They don’t have the financial muscle that the chavs and shitty have.

    If I was a city fan I’d feel really hard done by. The kampany and balotelli bans plus a ridiculous penalty tonight (awarded by pidgeon chested phil “I love fergie” dowd)

  169. goonermichael says:

    I think I just saw a tweet that Senegal are out of the acn. Good news for the barcodes if that’s true

  170. chas says:

    Fabregas – what a cheating wanker!

  171. goonermichael says:

    I’m not watching the el cheatico. makes me feel a bit dirty

  172. chas says:

    Cmon Madrid

  173. goonermichael says:

    Goonerholic @TheGoonerholic
    Reply RetweetedRetweet
    Delete
    FavoritedFavorite · Close Open Details Oh Cesc. What have the cheating scum taught you?

    It’s on his dna. the boundah.

  174. goonermichael says:

    in his dna

  175. chas says:

    GM,
    I was supporting the dippers earlier – yeuch!

  176. TotalArsenal says:

    GiE, I am in your camp :)

  177. goonermichael says:

    VIVA FRANCO

  178. chas says:

    BRIGADO ROSSO

  179. goonermichael says:

    Cheating scum

  180. goonermichael says:

    I don’t really like franco (just for the record)

  181. goonermichael says:

    I’m watching it now

  182. chas says:

    I’m going camping at the place below in the summer with the lads from Nottingham and their male offspring.

    I know it’s only in Somerset, but it’s got “award-winning washrooms”!

    http://www.warren-farm.co.uk/

  183. TotalArsenal says:

    GM, you must dive a bit when you do those underwater haircuts?! :)

  184. goonermichael says:

    that messi is so overrated

  185. TotalArsenal says:

    GM, how can you say messi is ‘so overrated’? Seriously, have you ever seen a better footballer in your life?

  186. goonermichael says:

    It’s got a chinese takeaway chas :)

  187. TotalArsenal says:

    Chas, looks like a nice campsite. I wonder how the washrooms became award-winning: maybe GLiC has got something to do with it?

  188. chas says:

    Chinese, fish and chips, award-winning washrooms, great beach, dancing girls…….I think I might move down there permanently!

  189. goonermichael says:

    joke sending off. they must be as corrupt as the fa

  190. chas says:

    I’d rather have my gonads chewed off by maggots than have to watch this cheating shit every week.

  191. goonermichael says:

    cesc belongs there :)

  192. goonermichael says:

    ref blew for full time even though they had a free kick to take

  193. goonermichael says:

    That was shit.

  194. goonermichael says:

    Night everyone

  195. Gooner in Exile says:

    I’d rather my campsite served award winning ales like this one:

    http://www.tunnelhouse.com/7.html

  196. chas says:

    Doesn’t look very child-friendly though, GIE.
    Besides, I’m sure the club house sells Peroni for the connoisseurs.

  197. Gooner In Exile says:

    Child friendly?

    There is a little petting zoo, a canal to swim in, and a field to run around in.

    What more do they need :D

  198. chas says:

    A canal to swim in. :)

  199. Big Raddy says:

    Mrs Raddy and I camped here a coupe of years ago.

    Went because it was award winning. No Peroni though.

    http://www.adventurewhitsunday.com.au/

  200. evonne says:

    Morning monster
    I like the look of that site, it has pets corner. When you are there could you get some details for me, it – can I keep my 2 dogs with me?

    What did my Cesc do last night?

    GM didn’t use the c word once, blimey, pigs might fly after all

  201. Big Raddy says:

    I used to live in Slad which is a about 10 miles from The Tunnel.

    Very good pub, I recall they were Wadhams specialists but with the growth of micro-breweries they are sure to have more.

  202. Big Raddy says:

    evonne. Cesc did nothing terrible, just rolled around a bit when kicked.

    I thought both games were exciting and Alves’s goal was Carlos-esque.

    Ref was crap and I understand why RM are unhappy but Diara should have been sent off in the 1st half and Pepe was once again a disgrace

  203. Gooner in Exile says:

    Raddy they do a Beer Festival every year now. Free camping, not that the campsite is that expensive anyway.

    Was supposed to go last year but family events meant we had to cancel.

  204. chas says:

    Evonne,
    The map below says field 6 is no dogs, implying that dogs are allowed on the rest.

    http://www.warren-farm.co.uk/parkmap.html

  205. chas says:

    Evonne, Cesc pretended to have been caught in the face when he wasn’t, that’s all.

  206. MickyDidIt89 says:

    They allow dogs in the other five fields? Yuk!
    My cats would use the “award winning toilets”.

  207. chas says:

    We were dressed and ready to go out for the New Year’s Eve Party.
    We turned on a night light, turned the answering machine
    on, covered our pet parakeet and put the cat in the backyard.

    We phoned the local cab company and requested a taxi.
    The taxi arrived and we opened the front door to leave the house.

    As we walked out the door, the cat we had put out in the yard,
    scoots back into the house. We didn’t want the cat shut in the
    house because she always tries to eat the bird.

    My wife goes on out to the taxi, while I went back inside to get
    the cat.
    The cat runs upstairs, with me in hot pursuit.
    Waiting in the cab, my wife doesn’t want the driver to know that the
    house will be empty for the night.
    So, she explains to the taxi driver that I will be out soon, ‘He’s just going upstairs to say
    Goodbye to my mother.’

    A few minutes later, I get into the cab. ‘Sorry I took so long,’
    I said, as we drove away.

    ‘That stupid bitch was hiding under the bed.
    I had to poke her ass with a coat hanger to get her to come out! She tried to take off, so I grabbed her by the neck.
    Then, I had to wrap her in a blanket to keep her from scratching me.
    But it worked! I hauled her fat ass downstairs and threw her out into the back yard!
    She better not shit in the vegetable garden again!’

    The silence in the cab was deafening!!

  208. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Chas :-)

  209. evonne says:

    Raddy – yeah, the boy can do no wrong, rolling around a bit is hardly a sin :)

  210. Morning all, intreresting points in this article relevant to LB’s post: http://www.onlinegooner.com/article.php?section=exclusive&id=2596

    Not that I like Elton John’s music…

  211. Big Raddy says:

    Micky. Just a few more days. Wrap up that cream.

  212. evonne says:

    Thank you Chas
    No thanks to Micky

  213. Big Raddy says:

    Evonne. It’s de rigeur in Spain

  214. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Raddy,
    Its beginning to look like you can keep that smelly fish after all :-(

  215. Morning all

    There’s a New Post from our lovely Irishgunner …………………

  216. Big Raddy says:

    Chary. The only thing I agree with in the article is that everyone is entitled to their opinion :-)

  217. Ok Radders, but I do sense that last Sunday was a turning point in the relationship between the Arsenal fans and the manager.

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