Spending Big Is Not The Right Answer. Spending Wisely Is.

The media has found a new Arsenal niche in recent weeks. They are the voice of the Arsenal fans. Or so the various red top scribes have proclaimed. For once, we are told, they are in touch with the views of the majority of Arsenal supporters. That being the case, you know what they have written today – and every day – so there is no need to buy the newspapers they are employed by.

Sorry what? Nobody asked you for your opinion. Oh? Perhaps that is because you do not shout loudly enough? Maybe it is because your opinions are not simple enough to be put into a soundbite that looks hysterical on the page.

And hysteria is certainly today’s byword. My goodness me, when football reporters go overboard, they do so in style. Tony, from The Sun, jumped in feet first and found that he does not come up smelling of roses. His headline writers had jumped in afterwards and landed, pushing him further down. He was in good company as Bri, his Daily Mirror peer, joined him.

The mass deliberate misinterpretation of words continued unabated this morning as, having failed to get Arsène to admit he is cracking under the strain, they decided to get supporters to do so instead.

I’m not going to spend” screams your SupersoarawaySun. Which actually leaves out a crucial word, “big“, from Wenger’s actual words. That substantially changes the meaning of the sentence. 

And do you know what, I do not want Wenger to spend big. I have never subscribed to the theory that you have to have a spine of the team born within these shores. Or that the side which costs the most, will deliver a title every season. Neither of those is true in it’s entirity, the former is actually unproven. The latter contributes but looking at Chelsea, well, there are no guarantees.

The squad is the crucial issue. Players leave and join but every summer it should be improved. You do not have to spend big, simply spend to get the right players for the right positions. Arsenal have suffered this season from injuries to crucial players, the sort that you can never really have a deputy for, the sort where the team needs others to step up to the plate in their absence.

In those moments, you appreciate the roles and performances of the absentees more but also, surely, there must be a dawning realisation that a player of the calibre of the one missing is not going to be happy with a ‘stand in’ role. You could have a World Class replacement sitting on the bench every week, waiting for Cesc to be injured or suspended. That would be like offering Laurence Olivier the stand-in for a leading West End play in case Richard Burton called in sick.

Wenger though is sure to have riled some with his mindset,

The team average is 23 years old, why should we expect to have a huge turnover at the end of the season? There is always a need to improve the team but if you look at our season you cannot come to the conclusion we need big changes.

That would be completely stupid because if we had beaten Liverpool and Tottenham this week we would be just two points behind Man United and we have to play them at home.

And that’s without speaking about being 4-0 up at Newcastle and then only drawing.

In highlighting the team’s strengths, he puts their weaknesses into centre stage, the spotlight firmly on the mental frailties. Little wonder Petr Cech and Sir Alex Ferguson have sought to exploit them.

Wenger is aware of them also, believing that the conceding of leads is a mental flaw to be overcome,

…it is a vicious circle problem and you can only deal with that with calm and by dominating your nerves. There are a lot of things you need [to keep leads], first of all experience and calm. Our defenders are under pressure because they are criticised for not holding on for results. That makes the problem a little bit worse. I feel what is important is to continue to play whatever the score is. I feel we need to keep our nerves more and communicate better.

Some might say that – myself included – that continuing to play is the problem, five minutes of defensive tightness would have seen at least two more points on the Arsenal tally, possibly four, in the past week.

That flexibility in style is the much vaunted ‘Plan B’ that is sometimes missing, the difference between champions and challengers. That is the next part of the journey this squad – or a significant part of it – must undertake. They are questioning each other openly which is good sign, growing maturity in their professional lives. Rather than waiting to be told the problem, they are identifying it. Providing the solution themselves is the next stage.

It would be nice if some recognition amongst all of this rancour, were given to the progress made this season. Only one other season since The Invincibles has seen a genuine title challenge mounted. Given the clamour for this sort of progress before last August, it is necessary to acknowledge this campaign’s huge positives.

Arsène noted exactly why the squad will not be undertaking the massive surgery being demanded,

I would say we are on a 16-game unbeaten run in the Premier League so at least we don’t have a losing mentality. It’s down to us to transform the draws in a winning habit. When you are on a 16-game unbeaten run, with the quality of the Premier League, the situation is not as black as you paint it.

That is the first thing not to be forgotten. The second?

I understand that your job [in the media] is to create crisis after crisis but I have distance [from that].

’til Tomorrow.

Posted on April 23, 2011, in Arsenal, Football, Premier League, Premiership, Soccer, Transfer Gossip and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 169 Comments.

  1. 1st?

  2. first. Not too many injuries this year either…

  3. This is the best we have had at the end of the season with injuries. im a little surprised that we are unable to take advantage. and in almost heartbroken that Chelsea now have a mouth to talk shit.

  4. La Grave on tour

    This site is alright, the people posting always have well thought out arguments like Joshua etc.

    The only thing that annoys me is that there is never any critical view of Arsene whatsoever.

    Todays post talks about progress, last year we finished on 75 pts, does anyone here expect us to beat that total? Oh wait a minute maybe the old “the league is a lot harder this year” rubbish will be the rebutal.

    Its funny that fans always latch onto the media spin when it suits their own agenda, in this instance deflecting any critical view of Arsene.

    Have a good day people.

  5. Happy Easter Yogi,
    Interesting post as always. I also have never thought spending ‘big’was the answer. However, i don’t think we should replace any of our current 1st teamers unless the player coming in is significantly better than whoever is leaving, which may well imply spending big, unless we get a deal like Sagna again.
    But really, I feel it is more important to keep the squad playing together for longer rather than chopping and changing every season. For instance while I like Kos, I’m not so sure that he is so much better than gallas, to justify his not insignificant transfer fee.

    The only squad member I wouldn’t mind leaving is Denilson and we can easily replace him internally. Also, if we are gonna keep playing Bendtner on the wings, might be better for him to go find 1st team football elswhere where he can play as a proper striker. A player like JET might be better suited to playing as a wide forward.

  6. ironchemistryman

    At last, a calm voice of reason.

    What is the purpose, the raison d’etre, of Arsenal Football Club? The answer ‘to win trophies’ is, I am afraid, simplistic. Against the background of the financial resources deployed by at least three other Premiership clubs, it follows that not everyone else can win a trophy (with due respect to the Championship, Johnson’s paints etc). The purpose of any other club then has to be to provide entertaining, quality football and, if at all possible, to be competitive. In that context, I would suggest that the last few seasons, this one in particular, have been a success achieved against a very challenging and competitive background.

  7. la grave – i think there are enough people insulting wenger for us not too join them. The press have been insulting him non stop. This is probably one of 3 places where we do not see the need to insult (my bad, criticize) our manager. Check out the web in general and you will get your fill of Wenger insults ( sorry, criticism).

  8. A voice of reason in a sea of hysteria… at last!
    If the average Arsenal blogger was told that he or she was being led around by the nose, by the British media, there would be screams of outrage… and yet this is exactly the reaction of some previously highly regarded sites.

    I read of Arsene Wenger on the verge of a breakdown; and hysterical articles and comments, written by some of the very people I always thought sane and rational (I even wrote a post or two for them in the past).

    And on what basis have they formed these considered opinions…?

    Frantic headlines from The Sun and The Mirror and the biased ramblings of Sky United…

    Shame on them for bing so fickle; and thank you for a little common sense at long last.

    I doubt we’ll win this year, and I’m as disappointed as everyone else, but we’re making progress, and we’ll get there… with or without the hysteria.

  9. La Grave on tour


    Its not about insults. Even today in the OP blog he talks about injuries, LOL. Our competitors have had injuries too however I dont want to go down that route.

    Every year we have injuries, every year this is rolled out as an excuse. RVP is not going to play a full season. Diaby is not going to play a full season. If you fail to learn from the past you will be doomed to fail in the future. The team that is failing to take advantage of Uniteds stutters is not injury ravaged, it is mentaly fraught.

    Saying that world class players will not sit on the bench is also spin, if one player is coming back from injury and there is a world class player in his position playing well and you cant accomadate them both then they have to fight for the position. Having 9 players in a team knowing they start when fit is unhealthy, it is more unhealthy than having a couple of players thinking they should get more playing time.

    Accountability is important, at present there are some fans that have unrealistic expectations and some fans that are are unwilling to blame the manager for anything. Two opposing polarised views with very few able to sit in the middle where the truth resides.

  10. I would take Laurence Oliver over Denilson any day of the week and he’s been dead 20 years.

  11. Lagrave on tour! if you really want critisism of Arsene there are plenty of blogs out there doing that, and the media take any opportunity to tear him apart , everyone is entitled to an opinion but I for one am sick of hearing arsenal fans ripping in to our players, what I want from a blog is a reasoned arguement for change not the hysterical drivel being touted in the last few weeks, our team is on the verge of greatness, this does not come overnight, and as long as I see the commitment from the team including Arsene that was on display at the tiny totts on wednesday, I will be screaming for them to the end, and again at the start of the new season and every season after that gooner for life, coyr

  12. La Grave on tour

    Goonergal –

    As I said the opinions on this blog I like, all based in sound reason. However people find any excuse not to blame Arsene for anything on here. There are times when you can become so entrenched in a view because of the bollocks being spouted by other people with an opposing opinion (wrong even) that your views start to sound just as mad as theirs.

  13. Well you have to spend big to bring in quality players, unless your lucky to find a gem of course. It time for rebuild and if Wenger dosn’t sort then it should’ve bye bye. I want him to change his stubborn and ways, a little project youth with older proven players with experience to guid the younger ones. Is that too much to ask? I think not GET IT SORTED WENGER.

  14. LGOT

    World class players will not sit on the bench waiting for their opportunity if the incumbent is a world class player which was the point I was making. Stop putting a spin on it…

    You should have a squad which can accommodate seemlessly but the point I made, is that some require a different approach rather than spending considerable sums on a rarely used replacement.

    One thing about the views here are that the manager is accountable, not above criticism. The solution for Arsenal is not a constant wham, bam, thank you mam world of spending which must be continued until the kitty is exhausted but an evolution which continues and allows success to begat success.

    Most are willing to enjoy the football and believe that the steady progress being made is worth waiting for. All of us will be disappointed if the title is not won, especially from the position we were in. But most believe that this season proves that the distance to go to the final destination is not as far as some continually tell us.


  15. Yogi,

    More patience with some than deserved, I think. Well and clearly voiced.

  16. For those criticising our squad quality please note that Gibson is starting for ManU today. I don’t think we lack quality it’s a mental thing. Darren Fletcher is a average mediocre player but having developed with players like Giggs, Keane, Neville etc he has taken on that winning mentality and now expects to win whomever he is up against. Add a little of that to Arsenal and we have a title winning team.

  17. LGOT

    LG condones twats who do nothing but slate and disrespect the manager all fucking day and night.No constructive criticisms of the teams short comings, or heaven forbid praise for the manager and team for good results. Just pure hatefilled bile. (not all the posters, there are some decent ones for sure) AND you have issues because there isnt enough criticism of AW on here? Thats bollocks anyway. I have posted and read criticisms of the manager here, yet because it doesnt come with flourishes such as “Wengers a cunt” you probably didnt recognise them as critiques mate!

    Have a top day

  18. Nice post. Thanks for the calm analysis. I am trying not to become paranoid but I do think we get more than our fair share of media spite and vitriol. I hope AW has broad shoulders, mine are feeling crushed.

  19. There is not one single team in the world that have world class players on the bench.None .So why would we be different?
    Diaby,Arshavin and Ramsey areas close as it gets.

  20. I see it’s business as usual in the Gooniverse!

    Thanks for being so consistent Yogi – great post once again and I particularly identified with this comment

    “Most are willing to enjoy the football and believe that the steady progress being made is worth waiting for. All of us will be disappointed if the title is not won, especially from the position we were in. But most believe that this season proves that the distance to go to the final destination is not as far as some continually tell us.”

  21. Bradys right foot

    I am old enough to remember when we were hated by everyone when George was in charge,especially the media who despised us. You know what it didn’t do us any harm and done wonders to galvanise the group, the difference was the support was firmly behind the team.

  22. Yogi W…

    Wonderful dissection of the idiotic hysteria. Great post today Sir.

    There’s a really funny article by Barney Ronay in today’s Guardian that I really enjoyed, I’ll quote some of it here….

    “This is the thing with Arsenal now. They arouse a deeply personal fury. Gutless, spineless, headless – not to mention lacking in heart, balls and biceps – it is a miracle there is anything left of them at all beyond a single slightly fey pair of yellow ballet pumps. It is a gloating, righteous kind of outrage; and no doubt entirely unrelated to the fact Arsène Wenger and his team are still seen as the most prancingly Euro-fied in the Premier League. This isn’t anti-Frenchie-ism. We’re past all that now. So what is it then?

    There is a kind of intolerance at play here. Specifically, Wenger is being denied the opportunity to fall short in the way everyone else falls short – bad signings, muddled tactics, players not good enough. Instead, Wenger’s Arsenal lose for one reason: because they lack “heart” and “leadership”. They lack “that little bit of spirit”, some vital gurning imprint of what a man on the radio described this week with tearful solemnity as “the Tony Adamses, the John Terrys”.”

    The whole Arsenal media thing is just the most bizarre and unhinged display of mass psychosis imaginable. As someone (forgive me but I can’t remember who exactly said it but it struck me at the time as a very apt metaphor) said yesterday, what we are witnessing here is equivalent of a person having a mental breakdown over the paint job on a Rolls Royce he had done nothing to earn. For me the entire anti_Arsenal/ anti_Wenger thing has just gone plain loopy. The “in Arsene we rust” headlines are just the latest manifestation of the utter superficiality of our press, both tabloid and broadsheet. The narcissism and celebrity obsessed nature of modern life means that Wenger is being pilloried for not doing what City, Chelsea and Liverrpool have done… We all saw Carrol and Suarez at the Grove… were they really worth the money Liverpool paid? Really? Remember all the predictions of how our defence was going to be run ragged by those 2… what actually happened on match day? But it’s our players that got lambasted! We’ve all seen Dzeko and we’ve all seen Torres… if these guys are not doing it for their teams why on earth should Wenger be hung, drawn and quartered in the media for not following a path that has led to indifferent results elsewhere? Crazy

    There is really no real crisis at this club of ours and I hope that the powers within the club have the will and courage to keep steady and continue with the work they are doing. Is there cause for disappointment and even anger at wasted opportunities? Hell yes! Is it in any way a crisis? Get out of here….

    Remember when you hear all this talk of gutlessness and lack of backbone that this team of ours have the best away record in the league. The very best. You don’t accumulate the best away record if you are gutless because as everyone knows playing away is much tougher and testing than playing at home but you won’t find that anywhere in the press coverage and analysis of Arsenal. The Press is, to be blunt, full of SH*T.

  23. Joshua

    The media thing with Arsenal is just bizarre, truely crackers. There was a piece the other day from The Telegraph entitled; Arsenal’s 6 Trophyless Years in Pictures. I shit you not! WTF is that all about? Where’s the constant references to toehr teams title less years?


    The support is there still mate, its just the fact we have radio phoneines that cater for dicks. I mean, what rational person wants to go to the bother of ringing up a radio phone in and talk about their team to a complete cunt like Richard Keys, Alan Green or Adrian Durham???

  24. Bradys right foot

    What Joshua said lol

  25. Cheers for that (decent) link Joshua. I’ve largely stopped reading the press altogether so it’s good to know there are still articles actually worth reading. Interesting, although this wonderfully succinct comment from suitone sums it all up for me:

    “It’s like Paul Merson – ex-alcoholic, ex-fruit machine addict, one wasted football career behind him – only capable of functioning in society because of an army of medical professionals supporting him, offering judgment on Wenger.

    Or Allen Hansen. An ex-Liverpool captain who uses that status, that resonance of being a real sporting hero, to advertise cheap booze at William Morrisons.

    There is not a single talking head on the British media who has done more for football than Wenger. Every single one of them is a loser compared with the Frenchman, so they have to destroy him.

    If it is not that – the foul mouthed invective of useless failures – then it is the fact that the media is more interested in the media than it is in the football”

    Nail hit squarely on the head. Fucking brilliant.

  26. Good post YW.

    As for whoever commented that injuries will be used as an excuse. I don’t think any of us here, believes it is because of the injuries we’ve not won the title this season. I believed we had a strong enough squad to cope with most injuries. Vermalean was a big loss, but in his absence we found Djorou as a worthy replacement. It was our inability to hold on to the leads that led us to shed more points than we should have. But it’s a been a good season over all. Better than the last 2 for sure. And one does see that we are progressing very well.

  27. Thanks for that article Joshua. I dont read the media anymore so i would never have found it. Its a brilliant article that was dead on point.

  28. Limestonegunner

    For Joshua (thanks for the link!) and all those lauding the Ronay article in the Guardian, which was certainly entertainingly written and perceptive, I wonder what you make of the final paragraph:

    “So Wenger should be allowed to lose in his own way: neatly, profitably, perhaps a little airlessly, polishing in private his own fiscally calibrated triumphs, parading his balance sheet around the deserted streets on his one‑man open top bus.”

    He is lampooning the manager rather than being annoyed by him the way others in the media are. It isn’t a defense of Arsenal, though it identifies a sort of culturally based bias that is driving its portrayal in the press. Ronay is essentially saying Arsene Wenger is a madcap figure of folly who creates his own world of success and “financial trophies.” What do you think of that?

  29. i think he was being sarcastic.

  30. Great post Yogi. Arsenal in crisis? If this is a crisis then I’ve got no bloody idea what the Manchesters, Chelsea, Spurs and ‘pool are experiencing!

  31. Great post Yogi, and some brilliant comments.

    It is good to know amidst the the obvious rubbish written about us by our so called supporters that you can still find the intelligent and articulate gooner.

    One thing that always made me proud to be an arsenal fan was the class and intelligence of our supporters, alas, something that the ease of which you can publish on the web has allowed the vocal minority to distort.

    They know who they are…

    Keep the faith all true gooners!

  32. Leyton Orient’s Chairman – or is it President – estimates that at this rate Arsenal will be the richest club in the world within two years! Is that a crisis? Let’s make the many first before developing ideas of splashing it.

  33. I guess on the subject of lampooning.

    Since the entire British Media, all 14 grey cells of it, is obsessed with winning at all costs……and that is, literally, winning at ALL COSTS….which of course becomes an oxymoron in moronic hands, since you can’t win the next game if your Team has gone bankrupt, I start to see them as another parody, a very British parody…

    I am thinking of the Knight in the Monty Python sketch – fighting without limbs

  34. YW great post. I feel and I’m sure others here do as well, that you’re really rising to the occasion in terms of doing your best to fight the tide of ridiculousness that is sweeping the gooner world.

  35. also united everton 0-0 55 mins fingers crossed

  36. Sorry money not many. And don’t ask how I made that mistake. Hope Everton holds out, still 0:0.

  37. great post yogi..one of your best for a while..
    whenever you need perspective, this site is where its at…

    the thing with the media is that when you have a team whos manager tells them they can win the league with a youth policy, and the media says ‘oh no you cant’ and the manager keeps replying ‘oh yes i can’ and then goes almost 6 years without winning a sausage, the media are going to sit and laugh and gloat and write headlines that might as well say ‘your paid 6million a year, i was right you was wrong i told you so hahahahahaha’…

    its all a game…its a huge game of cat and mouse…the only way to stop it is to win the thing…

    and yes i agree we dont need to go out and spend 50mil here and 60mil there…we need to find the right balance, judge what we feel is the weak spots in the team are and go out and find the right player to re inforce that weak spot..
    if wenger feels that we need a solid midfielder, then theres no point going out and spending 35mil on sniejder if he becomes available is there..
    and if wenger feels we need a hotshot striker to compliment van persie, then theres no point in going out and spending 35mil on danny alvez if he becomes available…
    its all about perspective
    alot of ppl would cream their knickers if we signed theses two players for that type of money and would start to beleive that we will now win the treble…..but weve not fixed the problem of solid midfielder or hotshot striker..weve just spunked 70mil up the wall for two players, two good players, but the same problems are still going to be there next year…

  38. Limestone,
    My interpretation of Ronay’s article was the same as yours. Yes he’s taking a pop at the British media’s criticism of Wenger, but he wasn’t particularly painting AW is a positive light either.
    I agree it was an entertaining read though, and offers a different perspective to what we normally get on the Brit media.

  39. Good post JJ

  40. kenyan
    thats alot of ppls problem,..
    weve already got the money, we are in the top 5 of richest clubs on the planet…
    so they want some of that money to go into strengthening the team and not keep persisting with a youth policy
    if weve got a problem position, then why wait another 5 years to watch and see if a young player can make it his own, when we have the money to get the ready made article right now..??
    the fans have already waited 5 years and we are still making life hard for ourselves..nobody wants to wait another 5 years..epsecially when there almost 100mil sitting in the clubs cash reserves…

  41. Where does this 100 mil figure come from that is circulated around? And if we really have 100 million just waiting to be spent, why are we still 200 million pounds in debt? (At least as of 2010, anybody got more recent figures?)

  42. goonergal

    glad to see you praising the arsenal performance on wednesday. even though the liverpool game was similar in that we desperately needed a win and got a draw, the games were drastically different.

    Come on Everton!

  43. evil
    read the clubs financial report mate
    the clubs official financail report that they gave to the shareholders and the public at the start of the season
    arsenal are a plc..they are required to publish there finances ..

  44. Limestone…

    I look at the article as a whole and see the final paragraph as more an attempt to be even handed than any real lampooning. Besides I’d hope that Arsenal, Arsene and the reasonable fans haven’t lost the ability to laugh at ourselves. I think that your reading of that last paragraph is a tad too literal. My reading of the paragraph you quote is that Ronay is saying that Arsene Wenger should be allowed to fall short just as everyone else is allowed to fall short without the media having a huge meltdown over nothing that he does whilst gently ribbing Wenger is no big deal for me.

    The other thing to remember here is that the writer is more of a humorist than a football specialist so my guess is that he knows very little about what Wenger has achieved with the resources available to him or how badly he likes to win…all-in-all it was a very good article pointing out the preposterous over reaction that follows Wenger and Arsenal in the media.

    That’s what I think.

  45. Come on Everton 11 more minutes only!

  46. Evil,
    I believe the 100mil is shown on our balance sheets as cash in the bank, or something like that. Not sure if that means its all avaliable for transfers though.

    But as to your second question; the high interest part of our debt has already been paid off. What is outstanding its a relatively low interest debt with ‘only’ 20-30 mil required to service it annually. It would make little financial sense to pay it off early.

  47. curse! 1-0 utd 86th

  48. ‘Cash and bank balances in hand of £127.6 million ‘

    ‘Debt service reserve deposits of £31.5 million are also included in the total cash position although, being part of the security for the Group’s listed bonds, the use of these deposits is restricted. In addition, there is a balance of £6.6 million included which is held in connection with the site works at Queensland Road and which can be used only for that purpose.’

    so of the 127.6mil we have sitting in the bank doing nothing…we cant spend 38.1mil of it due to the bonds and QR…

    but that leaves 89.5 mil sat in the bank of arsenal that can be used for wage hikes and transfers..
    obviously we wont spend all of it and we wont need to…
    but the point is that it is there…

    wenger even said yesterday the club was in a very healthy financial position and if he wanted to make a big transfer he could…

  49. According to the AST, the more realistic figure we have available to spend is actually somewhere around 40mil (ie.e money from Adebayor and Toure sales).
    However, I don’t believe for a second that we can’t spend more than that if we really need to, seeing as Wenger and the board have been saying that we have funds for the last few years. I
    ts just that Arsene it seems would prefer that we stay within budget in the short term as well as the long term. You could say he’s not prepared to take any financial risks whatsoever, and rather relishes the possibility that his low-spending/depend-on-youth approach could work.

  50. Fucking United

  51. ‘Group turnover increased to £379.9 million’
    ‘Group profit before tax was £56.0 million and profit after tax was £61.0 million’ (due to a 5mil rebate from HM customs and revenue)

  52. And fuck Everton. Why couldn’t they just hang in there for a few more minutes…

  53. As much as I hate United they know how to defend a lead!

  54. Why cant they give a trophy for best financialy run club. And then we can parade that round highbury on an open top bus.

  55. UnbiasedTobias

    So I think that’s it over…
    A penalty that should have bin given, a wild clearance… A goal that was offside and united get 3 points. You can’t compete with this.
    United play with 13 men, the players, the fans, the ref

  56. Borges Spinelli

    Greetings, gooner-troopers. From Nasimi beach with love.

    My not so concise take on events…

    Wenger’s recent statement is a rather interesting one. At first glance, appears a shrewd, public endorsement of our current crop of under-performing players. A move designed to motivate the squad to raise their game. Which is fine, by me. On the other hand, it can also be construed by some key players, whose commitment to the cause might be faltering, as a SIGNAL for them to jump ship in the summer. Why you may ask?

    Humor me for a second, while i attempt to expatiate. Put yourself in the position of a top Arsenal player, eager for silverware(s) to show for their years spent at the club. Imagine you were the likes of Fàbregas, Clichy, Sagna, Nasri and Arshavin; whom, on hearing Wenger’s soundbite, might say to themselves: ‘if the coach/manager isn’t intending to bring in the desired quality that will help us, comfortably challenge and win the league and other major trophies. I shall go elsewhere, with greater ambitions aligned with mine’. Good riddance, some fans might retort!

    This counter-productive scenario isn’t what want to envisage unfolding at my beloved Arsenal Football Club, next season. AW being the facile mind that he is, must be fully aware of this, too, privately. I trust/expect he has plans, if need be to address any potential, key personnel flight. And hoping for his statement’s impact to result in the former, rather than the latter. As for tales tabloids invent, i show them due courtesy by NEVER reading ’em.

    The real question, for me, is – what do we consider to be ‘big’ spending: 10m, £15-25million; £26-40m or £41million+ on a quality player?

  57. Tobias

    It was over before today mate. The 5 draws have killed us off. Shame, but that’s it. Typically United get away with murdr, not as balatant as they have done in the past, but still a clear pen for Everton? You bet away teams dont get thosekinda decisions at Old Toilet!

  58. nobody is asking wenger to spend filthy money like liverpool did on carrol, but we want him to buy quality players at important parts of the pitch, like gk, defenders, def mfs a striker, but he refuses to add quality in the squad and goes on playing stupid players ad also players out of position like walcott bendtner nasri et al……

  59. Evil

    What’s worse? A well intentioned lie or a truth designed specifically to hurt?

    You can decide which has been perpetrated over this much fabled money doing bugger all in the Arsenal bank accounts.
    Firstly, the figure is based largely upon cash received from season ticket renewals. Second, football is perceived as a ‘cash’ business therefore any significant bank balances look good, especially in publicly available figures.

    Indeed, you can guarantee that within a month the Arsenal bank balances are not so healthy by comparison to those published in the interim and full year accounts – financial shenanigans, I’m afraid.

    Secondly, is the myth that profits equate to capital spend, which is what purchasing players is. They don’t – the wages are the running cost, the drain on profits.

    £40m is easy to equate to Toure and Adebayor but that is not right either, since players have been bought and sold since so that money no longer exists.


  60. The Utd team today included O’Shea Evans Gibson and Anderson.Average players at best.Its tells you they have a better manager than us
    But dont worry we have Vela they only have Hernandes

  61. Old Toilet. Nice one.

  62. ‘Over recent years we have pursued a policy of investment in exceptional youth. Arsène is confident that each year this current group of players is progressing and getting closer to achieving their potential. We share his confidence and start the new season with a great sense of excitement and ambition.’

    that was back in 2010..

    so…that pretty much clears it up…theres a very apperant youth project and theres lots and lots of pennies in the coffers…

    lets see if theres as much emphasis on a ‘youth policy trophy’ and a ‘lots and lots of profit trophy’ after another season without a proper trophy in 2011…

  63. La Grave on tour

    Yogi –

    Thanks for your reply, your position is clearer than before. I will post tomorrow.

    Dexter –

    Dont judge me by the actions of others, its not fair. I only want to have a conversation like everyone else and I am not being rude.

    See you guys later

  64. I really admire United. They play the kind of ugly football I hate but win. I’m waiting for the day their bloody ship sinks!

  65. Vela starts against the spuds! Go on, Son!

  66. UnbiasedTobias

    yea dexter,
    U could argue that it was over, b4 today but atleast there was a glimmer of hope…
    And we all know that if kos or eboue had pushed anichebe like that it would have been a penalty… I’m just so angry wen united get shit like that happening for them
    Wen are we gonna have fair accurate reffing in football. Its killing the game, and the small clubs, and arsenal!
    I wouldn’t mind seeing TMO being introduced into footy, just like rugby.
    Its the most effective way of doing this shit. Unless SAF finds a way to bribe cameras 😉
    So many other sports use technology and I don’t know why we can’t bring it into football.

  67. Utd are dull as fuck. North London derbys over Manc snorefests any day of the week. Arsenal!

  68. @unbaisedtobias
    as much as i respected this rival site & YW, ur comments are i muz say totally biased.
    (1) the goal was offside? last time i check, advantage to the attacker when they are level.
    (2) penalty from ferdinand i suppose u referring to? it was a heavy touch from the forward, the ball was running away which probably help in the decision. also, it was shoulder to shoulder, not a clear penalty by any means.
    (3) the fans as the 12th man? is no fault of ours when we get behind our team isnt it?
    (4) did u not see we dominated most part of the games? did u not recognise our resilent to press for a goal esp. in the last 20min? we always BELIEVE we’r going to score rathet then worried we going to concede. that’s the little different between our team in my humble opinion.
    pls kindly change ur nick, for god’s sake. it’s kind of self-insulting, dun u think so.
    till emirates, cheers lads!

  69. Bradys right foot

    Stonewall penalty denied again at OT, when I think of some of the descisions against us this year ifs ufb. Wigan 90th minute handball a bit of Jordan hang time in the wall and no pen, the 2nd Newcastle pen. If that was us I’d bet the house Walton would have give it.

  70. deephenry

    Now this is just an outright lie:

    nobody is asking wenger to spend filthy money like liverpool did on carrol,

    As you well know, some are expecting that and nothing less than that is going to lead to calls for his head next season. That’s where this current vein of vituperation is headed.


  71. No one really knows the budget and targets Wenger has in mind. However to go out and say I going to spend and I has substantial funds will just drive prices up.

  72. Bradys,
    We did benefit from a clear pen not given against Blackpoool, but yeah, United get way more of those kind of ‘helpful’ calls, or non-calls rather.

  73. Eboue-lucas-emirates-penalty

    Rio-Anichebe-OT-nothing doing

    Maybe its some of the arsenal “fans” appealing for the pen so that they can have a go at wenger, eboue, denilson etc that contributes to this..not beyond the realms of possiblity u know…Its pathetic that a manager has to ask for fans support in the middle of a title race

  74. Blackpool had a stonewall penalty denied them vs. Utd at Blackpool which would’ve put them out of reach. The trend is too rich to ignore I’m afraid.
    Oo-er! Conspiracies… excuses… lies!

  75. KG, there is nothing ‘admirable’ about manure, they certainly work hard and probably fear the wrath of their manager. But mostly they get a massive helping hand from spineless referees on a consistent basis. It’s hard not to do well when you have the most important people on the pitch on your side. As much as we have needlessly thrown points away this season, we certainly do not get the helping hand that SAF enjoys from officials, the press and other ‘friendly’ managers. Things that happen on the pitch are influenced by the cultural context in which we live. SAF is part of the establishment, Arsene is not.

  76. LA

    Utd may be dull but take a look at their trophy cabinet.The Double team of 71 and GG’s 93 and 94 were dull but they were winner.Give me a 1-0 win over a 3-3 any day.Utd unlike us do have Mental Strength
    This is the worst Utd team in living memory yet we have gift wrapped them the title
    And Wenger has to carry the can

  77. LA

    Didn’t that penalty get awarded & Blackpool miss it? Think it meant they would have been 3-0 up before half time.


  78. They would have been 3-0 up at half time, YW, yeah – but it wasn’t given. Varney blatantly poleaxed on the edge of the box 2-0 up just before half time… penalty against every other team in the land.

  79. Why don’t you fuck off and support them then, Ted?

  80. LA

    He can’t, he doesn’t live in the Home Counties.


  81. Ha! Have a good day, Yogi…

    BBQ time!

  82. Actually Gooner Ted provides the Graham Paradox (commonly known as The Mourinho Paradox nowadays).

    Is it better to be dull and winning or entertaining without a trophy. Mourinho’s teams were winners but he was sacked as soon as results took a turn for the worse. Can a manager whose sides are functional ever remain in a job at the top 4 clubs unless he wins constantly. The comparison of Mourinho and Wenger suggests the answer is unpalatable to the likes of Gooner Ted.

    Graham was in line to be sacked irrespective of his ill-begotten gains simply because it would have been two seasons without a trophy come the end of 1995/96 and football clubs do not tolerate boring football without a trophy. Even back then.


  83. UnbiasedTobias

    Ok devil is red. Shut up please. Ferdinand used his arms to push him. Anichebe was infront of ferdinand not so.
    That whole heavy touch thing is bullshit, remember old trafford united vs arsenal rooney’s touch was way too heavy the foul was made by the keeper but even if there was no foul rooney could not have got the ball.
    Advantage to the attacking team ey? Yeah well in that case RVP’s goal against spurs should have stood no?
    I agree our support has been dreadfuland your supposed to have your fans a the 12th men. But the point I was making, and don’t try to deny it, is that u guys are sooo lucky with the refs calls.
    I’m just stating the obvious. Season after season after season. If u deny it obviously you don’t know what u talking about.
    And its very easy to believe u will score late wen bullshit like that happens to you every game.

    My name is abit of a misnomer, its just a ncikname I got for being terribly biassed towards the arsenal, but there was no bias in the above statement. Just writing down what happens game after game.

  84. Gooner Ted. I was alive when Manure were relegated to the then second division. I’m sure that was a worse Manure team than the present one. You need to grow some balls and, probably, shut up.

  85. very sensible things being said on here today and i would have to agree with the majority of what has been posted. only one more day yall, then we get to watch our team play again!!

  86. I agree totally with this YW! well said.

    Its obvious that people want big money singings, if that wasnt the case what would be the complaint? Didnt Arsene buy in areas that we most needed help? GK was not one of those and neither defensive mid. It was defense and up front.

    I disagree with Henristic that Kos is not an improvement on Gallas, he is a better play right now and stats bear that out. Kos will be an Arsenal great for me.

    Watching the United goal, you can see how one mistake can cost you. Anicehe instead of making the simple pass to his goalkeeper tried to clear the ball though he knew he was under pressure, United get the ball and its done. This is what has been our undoing this season along with some questionable refs.

  87. Bradys right foot

    Spuds draw with West Brom I think Liverpool could catch them for 5th never mind them getting 4th.

  88. for all the myth that TV is our best defender, it was gallas who was our best defender last year..
    TV became best defender by default seeing as though gallas left..and nobody had seen much of JD (injury)and koz (newcomer)
    but JD and koz have been just as inpressive in their first season as what TV was in his…
    so IMO.. its a three way shoot out for who arsenals best CB is..at the minute i would say its JD…Tv will have to fight for his place but thats a good thing..
    but none of them have been as good as what gallas was…but with age on their side they will get better..and hopefully they will eclipse gallas and be on a par with the likes of sol and tony..

  89. baisedtobias, u know…i need not need to justify to u if we are deserving leader, or hopefully, as winner in a few weeks time. end of the day, the league table dont lie. u can blame the world, blame the refs all u want & feeling bitters about u lot missing out on another year. utd lost the title by a point last year, guess u didnt watch the 6 pointers home & away with chelsea, it’s not in ur interest anyway. any utd fans could give u a full rundown of how we were rob blar blar blar. but so what? so in ur opinion, becos RVP might have got a ‘legitimate’ goal disallow last week, our goal today should also be disallowed to even things up a little, make it easier for ansenal? we are football fans, obviously we are going to see things with our tinted glasses. this is an ansenal blog, with all due respect, i will not come here to voice my opinion on ur team. but today’s game at old trafford isnt what u guys are experiencing with great frustration at emirates? everton came here to park their bus. we have total 21 shots vs 3, 61% of procession & 13 corners vs 1 for everton. u call this win unfair? boy, looks like u dunno ur football very much har. or perhaps this great sense of bitterness boils from
    ur own frustration asenal are finding it hard to break down teams who line up defencesively & time & again u got caught up on the counter? perhaps FA should derive a new rule to prevent not more than 4 defenders in the squad when visiting emirates? that probably will be consider fair to u…eveything have to be on a plate for u to be consider fair i guess.
    wake up little boy. welcome to the real world. u need to snap out of this ‘it’s everybody fault except me’ mentality…it’s a small clubs’ fans mentality. arsenal deserve better support esp. during this crucial last few games. i have not rule arsenal out of the running, seems like i have
    more respect for ur own team huh?

  90. UnbiasedTobias

    Jonjon… Agree wit u there mate
    I have know doubt that in a few years kos, Jd, and verminator will be world class. I mean even with all the bullshit that’s happened to us, our defense has been one of the best in the prem, and with such young defenders the future is bright. However we still need to sign a squillaci type player who will cover for our first cb’s if and when they get injured. 1 who has experience winning things and is a good mentor for them. Hopefully he won’t be as calamitious as sebastien…

  91. UnbiasedTobias

    Jonjon… Agree wit u there mate
    I have no doubt that in a few years kos, Jd, and verminator will be world class. I mean even with all the bullshit that’s happened to us, our defense has been one of the best in the prem, and with such young defenders the future is bright. However we still need to sign a squillaci type player who will cover for our first cb’s if and when they get injured. 1 who has experience winning things and is a good mentor for them. Hopefully he won’t be as calamitious as sebastien…

  92. Paulie Walnuts

    Jon Jon,

    I completely agree on JD & Coke , I mean Kos. They`ve been consistently excellent. They`ve both come a long way in a short space of time following a serious injury & a transfer to a foreign country / high profile club.

    Infact it wouldn`t surprise me if Barca came sniffing around either, particularly after their performances in the CL ties.

    One things for sure – injury permitting (this IS Arsenal) they`ll be even better next season.

    If we do buy a defender in the summer I`d prefer a utilty player who can cover across the back four if required – rather than a big name , big money signing who`ll be pressurised from day one by the very arseholes who clamoured for their signing.

  93. Bradys right foot

    JJ the TV JD and Kozzer centres all have their best years infront of them. Kozzer in his first season has been very good, he’s not rated by some. Our defenders are exposed more than most given the formation we play, the problem with it is that when you loose possession the transition period often leaves the centre halves exposed. I would contest that our centre halves have to do more defending than those of other teams and don’t forget we play a high line. Imagine JD or Kozzer playing behind a deep lying 5 like Birmingham they’d look World class. To play for Arsenal in this formation requires speed, strength skill and bravery. I think the JD and Kozzer have done a great job for us.

    A clogger would be cruelly exposed at Arsenal, people have said Samba could do a job for us nonsense. Gary Cahill is touted as a defensive saviour really? Better than TV, Kozzer or JD and if not we can justify the £20 million so he can sit on the bench.

    Have we conceded too many goals? Yes. Have we let leads slip? Yes. These issues are imo largely to do with the micro management of the game on the pitch, the choices that players have made and the collective defensive work when in transition.

  94. 0-0 after 75 minutes

    Head- they are dropping too deep, allowing too many dangerous balls across the box, hernandez will probably score one from 2-3 yards out

    Heart- Anichebe on the break to set up cahill for a winner in the 89th minute of the game

    Damn head!!

  95. But watching the game you did realize the value of bodies in the box, which is probably bendtners role on the right when he comes on. Put dangerous balls from the left for him to attack. Maybe makes sense now. But bendtner seems to drop off to receive instead. Overloading the attack from the left flank makes sense because of wilshere being naturally left footed in the middle. Maybe next season this will emerge as a viable Plan ‘B’ which we are supposed to lack. However the most precious quantity in football management “time” is needed for it too evolve. before ppl say it has had 6 years..it has not..im talking about this particular aspect only..

  96. Manu always have & always will get those decisions, especially at home but not exclusively. Refs are intimidated by Sir Alex and his clubs power, I wouldn’t say they deliberately help Manu, just that they are afraid to give them anything less than the benefit of doubt. Won’t change till the Scott retires.

    Against WBA Neville should’ve been sent off for a 1st half lunge in the area, he was the last man and the foul was blatant yet somehow wasn’t given. United would’ve been down to 10 men for about 60mins. WBA then went on to miss a penalty that was miraculously given later in the game. Neville got away with similar the week before, again no pen and no red so that’s 2 games with no sending off and no pen given.

    Eboue was a cock for last weeks mistake but to suggest, as some have, that he’s the only player to do it is not correct. The difference is that Neville, Rio, Brown, O’shea & Vidic play for Manu, they’re allowed the odd mistimed intervention. After all Paul Scholes “just can’t tackle apparently. Fuckers!

  97. True Anirudh, all United did for the most part is cross the ball in the box until it worked

  98. Graham was sacked in 94-95 when we were on course to retain the Cup Winner’s Cup, so it wouldn’t have been two seasons without a trophy. Rioch had the 95-96 season. Just saying…

  99. UnbiasedTobias

    What dyo guys reckon bout moving walcott to the left flank. I remember the way henry used to blitz down the flank to the end of the field, draw the keeper and either shoot or lay it across for som1 to bang into an open net.
    Seing as walcott is right footed, it would naturally be easier for him to knock them in from their.
    Maybe its just my nostalgia but I think that we could utilse theo’s pace more effectively.

  100. Terry even in the CL it was clear that Chelsea shouldve gotten a pen. Must be nice being United.

  101. Seeing the lightweight Hernandez playing centre makes me believe its time for Theo to move centre. Hernandez has 12 league goals. Theo would have 24!

  102. Yep, must be lovely Paul. Yet if the mere suggestion of this favourable record is made to a Manc then it’s greeted with fierce defence, talk about blinkered. They have won a good few close run leagues off the back of such refereeing, a couple of points salvaged here and there are all the difference needed. These have then helped promote a winning teams global merchandising income, record books only ever give final points tally’s and trophys won. Fuckers!

  103. In terms of personnel what we need is just a player who can be back up or rotation option for Song. Currently we don’t have any player who can play the same role. Also next season Song will be unavailable for the ACN. If Frimpong makes the step up next season it is ok, otherwise we need a cover in that position.

    Other than that as always if any player who can be an improvement on our current personnel and is available at the right price is welcome, but that is not a necessity.

  104. yeah most definately…
    in jd, tv and koz we have 3 top pl cbs…and with abit more drilling and abit more experience under their belts we are absolutley set in that department for the next few years, although i would like to see another CB brought in over the summer in the JD mould, (maybe bartley who was once touted by steve bould as the next sol campbell) not only for numbers but id love to give TV a shot at either midfield or LB…
    we just need them all to have better luck with injurys..having one of them out for two months is one thing but having one of them out all season just takes the piss..
    and koz isnt rated by some because he cost naff all and he fluffed his lines in the CC final but if anyone says that tony adams never fluffed his lines they are lying..
    if wenger decides to get cahill then so be it..cahills quick, strong, vocal and hes a defender first and foremost..what i wouldnt give for a clogger against liverpool in the last seconds…or against spurs before huddlestone scored..those type of balls just need clearing cos if not the pressures on..
    if we dont sign a cb its not a huge problem and if we dont sign a gk i dont think its a problem with the emergence of the confident and improving ches..
    my personal belief is that we need a proper trickey pacy winger who can beat his man and get a decent ball in..we need a strong leader in the midfield and a lethal goal poaching hitman to complement robin, before we start thinking about dfenders or gks as everyone tells us we need…
    we don t need a massive over haul all it needs is a few tweaks and a few more options in case we want to change the formation (instead of playing bendtner on the wing for example) but it is going to cost money, not chelsea or city money, but it needs to be more than westbrom or birmingham money…

  105. the only player I would really like to see amongst those constantly linked to us in Jan vertonghen..Hes versatile and part of an Ajax setup so we can be sure hes technically really good.

  106. keyzer
    i think frimpong has made himself elligable for ghana…
    so we could have a situation where they both go to ACN..(when are they moving that to summer by the way?)
    i think we should go after scotty parker…and if west ham go down he’ll be cheap as chips…

  107. Torres finally scores! 50 mil, 1 goal thus far.

  108. You’d think Chelsea won the league with that goal. They are delirious!

  109. tobias
    to be honest id rather move theo up front with robin and go 442 than put him on the left

  110. @ YW
    Thanks. Sensible as usual. I particularly agree about not ignoring the progress that has been made.

    @ Henristic
    “We did benefit from a clear pen not given against Blackpoool, ”
    And in the same game, RvP should have got a penalty when he was pushed in the back.

    @ Passenal | April 23, 2011 at 3:36 pm |
    Agree 100% with that comment. Also I read that five penalties have been awarded at OT in the history of the Pl. So apparently, attacking players have only been fouled in their box five times in all that time.

    @ Paul N
    “Its obvious that people want big money singings, if that wasnt the case what would be the complaint? Didnt Arsene buy in areas that we most needed help? GK was not one of those and neither defensive mid. It was defense and up front.”
    Exactly Paul N – they keep saying they don’t mean “big-money” signings, but that is in fact what they want. They simply equate “good” with “expensive” and can’t judge a player’s worth without looking at his price tag.

    @ Bradys right foot | April 23, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
    great comment

  111. West Ham played well, on play you could say a draw wouldve been fair but as we know you have to stick your chances in the net.

  112. UnbiasedTobias

    Yea, I wasn’t exactly accurate jonjon. What I meant was a 442 with walcott left and VanTheMan right. Then walcott can attempt those dangerous runs that henry made 😀
    man, am I drooling, imagine how effective that would be. Then his pace could cause more problems and may win us a few penalties…

  113. @ Paul N
    Even £50 mil signings have got to start at 1

    @Fun Gunner
    Defensive mid did not need a signing…………er according to me no.
    There is no need for big money signings if you can look in the right places, I questioned the signing of Chamakh earlier in the season cos I had seen him play and looked at his stats and came to the conclusion he was a hold up man and I felt we needed a more potent striker. But credit to him he has come and done a job, well done.

    For me the number 1 priority is not signings but sortign our mentality out. This fear of failure – or is it fear of success – where we get within touching distance of our goal and then the nerves kick in only for us to fall apart. That has got to be addressed maybe it will only work itself out after so many encounters with defeat I don’t know but the manager will I am sure be looking to address it.

    2. We have a large squad I would like to determine which players should stay and who should go. I have my ideas but I do not wish to divulge always thought it a bit disrespectful to players. They read online too.

    3. No we come to the signings, there are good signings to be made for reasonable prices just look at Odemwinge @ West Brom. Is he right for us, personally don’t think so but this does not take away from the impact he has had there.

    This notion that we can’t bring in quality players at reasonable prices is just false. Yes as soon as the other club hear Arsenal, prices move upwards but there are still good players available at reasonable prices. How much did van De Vaart cost, Krancjar? Come on now sell me something else that does not wash.

  114. Well it’s clear we need a few big players. as Cesc rightly said he is who they look up to and he is only 23. Sczesney is a top keeper but he will make mistakes whilst studying his apprenticeship so having him as a number 1 is foolish, Neuer should be the type of keeper we should bring in.

    Upfront we should bring in Huntelaar, he would gaurantee us a bucket of goals i would bet my mortgage on it.

    just one mid to replace denilson and we would be in for a serious shout at getting over that line next year without the now common loss of breath and stich and slight case of vomiting.

  115. Yw

    No one can argue the logic of the title of your post. Clearly we all want the money spent wisely Just hope we spend the money we have wisely. Sitting on transfer kitties and not using what we have probably does make sense given whats happened again this year Sometime big money signings are wise if they can really improve your chances of winning. We make fun of Torres but no one doubts that that he is capable of scoring 30 goals. With drogba slowing down if Torres regains his form next season and for 5 -6 more seasons and if Luiz plays as well as he is capable the chavs will be right back on top. In that case their 73 mill would be well spent. The wisdom of the money spent is not related to how much the player costs as much as the effect it has on team performance. I just want to see us do whatever we can to get this team over the top. Using the money we have might not guarantee success but certainly can’t hurt.

  116. There was another incident in the manusa game that should have seen Everton awarded a penalty.

    I don’t recall who it was, but the Everton player was taken out by the young manusa defender basically executing a judo throw using his thigh.

    If an Arsenal player had pulled that stint it would have been given.

    manusa? Apparently it was an “honest mistake” according to the commentators, so that’s alright then………………

    I notice that the refs abide by the rules like when an Everton player was looking to find his CF during one attack and the ref chested it down for manusa to regain possession and start a counter-attack.

    That is within the rules (the ref is part of the field of play), except I recall a ref blowing and giving a dropped ball when it happened with us and we were about to score……………………….one set of rules for everyone else, another for Arsenal?

    Also no mention by the commentators of “the ref can’t allow that to happen” as they did when we got blown for the same thing – against the rules one might note.

    Any doubts about the outright hostility shown by the media and commentators still?

    Interesting in the spuds game, I see a penalty was given against WBA for the ball deflecting off the WBA player’s thigh onto his chest/arm, but when dawson did pretty much the same thing no penalty was given?

    Honestly, the refs and commentators in the EPL are a disgrace.

    Watching Vela I thought he had a very good game. Excellent vision and passing.

    Anyone have any clue as to why he just hasn’t had much of a run with us?

    I can’t understand why he hasn’t had more chances even on the wing, he looks very good.

    I’m sure if he had more chances he’d be playing a lot better, but there must be something we’re unaware of?

  117. Not sure why the boss says things like the ones that have caused the latest press feeding frenzy. He knows full well how his words will be represented/ misrepresented. Same with the cesc interview. The boss is smart enoughto know what will happen. he seems to enjoy creating controversy. Why not just say that we will evaluate all of our options after the season is over. He can express confidence in the squad without creating media firestorms.

  118. JamesM

    Just saying, we didn’t retain the ECWC. Graham might not have even got us there. Just saying.


  119. UnbiasedTobias

    just one mid to replace denilson and we would be in for a serious shout at getting over that line next year without the now common loss of breath and stich and slight case of vomiting.

    Hahaha! Priceless.
    He makes it sound like denilsons the reason were not champions lol 🙂

  120. Tobias if that is how you want to percieve that comment then fine but the comment was more about bringing in 1 quality midfeilder which we need and erm well Denilson has gone backwards and you can’t say he hasnt so i’m not being harsh, the man utd game was the nail in the coffin, he couldnt even impose him self on that lot so a midfielder will have to make way. who else would get pushed off the plank before him?

  121. Nasir Jones-Nasri

    Heh. Bill sure does love himself some Chelski. There are certainly doubts as to whether Torres has 30 goals per season in him. If you’ve actually watched him play lately, you’d know he’s looked well off the pace and has been a shadow of his former self. There is no guarantee that he regains his form from a few years ago, and should he not that is a colossal bust of a signing that may rank up there with the biggest busts of all time. But let’s not let facts get in the way of your baseless opinion and splash the cash agenda right, Bill? Let’s face it we don’t have a sugar daddy that can absorb losses like Chelski, so comparisons with them are off base, imo.

  122. and why have you just taken the last part of my comment and try to make it look like that i was just pointing out the getting rid of denilson and then try to mug me off. hhhmm you a hack? if not maybe you should get into that industry coz you show some nifty little hack tricks.

  123. Nasir Jones-Nasri

    MikeSA pointing the out the obvious there. At this point, is there any doubt whatsoever ManU get preferential treatment from the refs? Anyone doubting they’ve been gifted the position they are in should be locked up and put in front of a firing squad, imo.

  124. If you have a great young ‘keeper in the squad you don’t stick him on the bench; you send him out on loan. Of course, neither are going to happen because Szczesny will be number one next season.

  125. UnbiasedTobias

    Naa.. man chill out.. It made me laugh is all! I know perfectly what u mean. And I agree fully with you.

    Anyway who dyo rekon should take his place?

    Bt seriously, sorry if I offended… I’ll issue a public apology if u want

  126. fair enough Tobias, you know what this site is like, get attacked left right and center for anything not 100% complimentry to the team.

  127. Nasir Jones-Nasri

    I find it truly hilarious that some here have nothing better to do than moan about replacing a 5th choice midfielder and a 4th choice CB. Some of you crack me up. Arsenal surely have the most spoiled fans in the league.

  128. what are you on about nas, its about fukin getting some more quality to help us win things.

  129. What are you talking about NJN?

    Le Grave just sold 10 of our players today, yes, 10. An excellent analysis using statistics, factual figures, accounts e.t.c. Made sense to me. Sell half the team, buy another half. Simple.

  130. “How much did van De Vaart cost, Krancjar? Come on now sell me something else that does not wash.”

    Klon. it’s not just the price of the player. Were either of them right for the game that Arsene wants the team to play? Will they fit in with the rest of the players? What personal or physical issues do they have that we are not aware of? There are a number of factors involved in buying players. It’s not as simple as it seems on a computer game.

  131. Duke, its seems I really upset you the other day, my apologies sir.

    Whether Torres performs is quite a big if.

    I dont believe we need big signings, if we do at all. This team depends on how some of our buys will perform, what will we get from the likes of Chamakh and Ramsey, etc. These are players who have proven themselves but havent played regularly in while.

    I really cannot remember our young goalie making many mistakes apart from the Spurs and the CC thing, if he was at fault. He has been great and less mistake prone that most goalies I have see. Wenger was obviously right to give him a chance.

    Our issues are more mental as far as remaining calm, focused and controlled. It may not be the age that is the issue but the pressure of not having won in x amount of years.

    Anyway, lets have a win tomorrow!

  132. Passenal, also I can see where Arsene would believe we didnt need those players.

  133. yeah Paul N , i did go off the other day i do apologise.

    Nas, the only reason im going on about bringing in players is because yogi’s headline. So im suggesting a couple o players that i feel would turn us from the nearly men to the er….winning men.

  134. Kool Duke!!!

  135. Nasir Jones-Nasri

    We’ve got more quality than anyone in the league, DG. I reckon we need to splash the cash on a few refs this off season. That’s what is really separating the Mancs and us, imo. We need that 12th man game changer like the Mancs have got. You know a Howard Webb type.

  136. We would be a lock for the PL, NJN!

    Me mentioning Ramsey has just caused me to think of how much we really dont need. Question: If he can get back on form (he has looked pretty good) do we really need someone for Denilson? (hope he can regain his confidence).

  137. so now weve established why the mancs are ahead of us…weve gotta establish who separates us from chelsea…??

  138. Limestonegunner

    Maybe that is what Arsene meant when he said we have a squad of 23 so not much needs to change here but he has the cash for a big transfer. We are getting Howard Webb in the summer transfer window! What would be bigger than that?

  139. we definately need a few signings..
    3 at least..
    that fact we have to use nikki on the wing gives a little clue to one position
    the fact we struggle to keep a fine balance in midfield when songs injured or off form gives another
    and the fact we havent had a consistent 25goal a season man for 5 years is another,
    if we wouldnt have had ches id of said gk position has been shit as well for ages but thats looking sorted..

  140. Does that striker then take over from RVP? or do we go back to playing 2 up front? If not RVP goes to the bench, no?

  141. I dont see the need, maybe a back up for Song and a speedy winger but can Vela come back and get it done?

  142. RIP John Sullivan.

    Another great post YW.

  143. “We are getting Howard Webb in the summer transfer window! What would be bigger than that?”

    The referee chief Riley perhaps?

  144. paul if we are relying on rvp to get the golden boot then we are in for a long wait…he’ll always score goals but his injury record speaks for itself we rely on him too much..
    we need another and yeah its better if they play together and if that means going to 442 then so be it..
    we need options for both squad rotation and formation rotation..
    cant go thru the whole season 451 all the time its one of the reasons we are so predictible…
    oh look arsenal are playing the same way again but theyve got no wingers and only one clinical finisher as the lone man so lets park the bus and double mark him and we’ll spend all game watching them tippy tappy and go for the draw..and if we are lucky enough they will all plough forward and we’ll hit a long ball over the top and maybe we’ll grab a win..

  145. Really, we’ve only become a little too predictable since those body blows back in March. The system’s fine for me – I’d just like to know how to diminish that handbrake effect when the pressure’s on. It’s going to be exciting to see how AW addresses this. A lot of people won’t like it, but it might just be a matter of letting the team mature naturally and letting guys like Nasri Theo and Jack build on the progress they’ve made this season.

    The formation is sure as hell not a 4-5-1 though. Even if you ignore how we set up you just need to look at the goal tallies of Nasri, Walcott and Cesc (last season). They might start wide and deep, but they get into positions that midfielders in a flat five-man midfield wouldn’t. It’s a very fluid 4-3-3; even RvP can’t be described as a striker.

  146. If I know my tactics jargon – RvP’s a false nine, Nasri’s an inverted winger with a free role and Walcott (as Finsbury established the other day) is an inside right forward. Cesc should also probably have a 10 instead of a 4 on his back as well!

  147. Nasir Jones-Nasri

    The tactics teams employ against us are born strictly out of fear of embarrassment and respect for the game we play, JonJon. Last I checked we’re 16 or so games unbeaten.

  148. Nasir Jones-Nasri

    Bendtner is an inside right forward as well, OOU. Calling him a winger is a real stretch.

  149. OOU
    its supposed to be a 433
    but its not and never has been a 433..
    its a 4231..which basically leads to a 451..and when robin drops back its a 460..which is why we never have anyone in the box when its crossed in..

    yeah it works fine soemtimes, but as soon as we pick up a few injurys, thats it, and instead of adapting the formation to the personel we have available we stick to the formation and put square pegs in round holes…like nikki on the wing…and then once we lose momentum it doesnt matter who plays cos we cant handle the pressure…

    and its ok letting the team mature naturtally but if we dont win something soon nasri jack a theo wont be here much longer…not when they are good enough to go play for someone who does win…

    look at cesc..hes been here years…hes been brought up the arsenal way with arsenal philosopys and values…and now he’s kicking up a fuss

    those silver things can be one hell of a stumbling block when it comes to letting players mature…

    theres gotta be a balance cos i dont think many of the fans can go through another few years of letting the team mature either..

  150. NJN
    16 games unbeaten my arse.Thats why we have slipped back to 3rd place.Out of those 16 games was a draw against relegation candidates Wigan which we were leading.The historic 4-4 at Newcastle need i say more.two 0-0 draws against two teams who couldnt buy a point Sunderland and Blackburn.a 1-1 v Liverpool when we scored with 1 minute of injury time left and a draw at Spurs having led 3-1.8 draws out of 16 games.5 of those draws we threw away leads.
    Shut up about unbeaten runs and take a look at the league table.Thats the only stat that counts.The unbeaten run is this seasons Wenger sound bite like a top 4 finish is as good as winning a trophy was last years one

  151. yup we are 16 games unbeaten but that only papers over the cracks that weve drawn 7 out our last 8 and you could go the whole season unbeaten if you wanted and still get relegated

    so although on the whole it looks impressive form, its also been relegation form..
    not champion form..which is why we are dropping down the table and not climbing it…

  152. bendtners an inside right??? why is he glued to the touchline then…
    doesnt look too inside to me
    whats he gonna do..cross it to himself..

  153. in the time weve gone 16 unbeaten manu have been beaten three times…
    and are still 9 points clear when at one point it was 3…

    fat lot of good its done us aint it….

    i have rather have had their form and they have ours..

    then they could say theyve got the ‘weve gone 16 games unbeaten trophy’ to go with their ‘mental strength trophy’ while we are sitting 6 points clear at the top…

  154. Nasir Jones-Nasri

    Fair point, Red Devil Ted. You’re entitled to your opinion, and so am I. My opinion? I think you’re a Manc posting on a Arsenal blog. I do find it funny you claim to be Gooner yet I see not one mention of that farce of a penalty against Eboue or the dodgy pens against Newcastle as well as no penalty on a stonewaller against Bramble for a ridiculous shove on AA23 or even RvP’s legit goal ruled offside against the Spuds.
    t’s also been relegation form. Bwahahahahaha! You’re a real dunce sometimes, JonJon.

  155. Nasir Jones-Nasri

    Yikes. Excuse the iPhone post.

  156. God I am glad I’m not a miserable wanker like ted. What a sad fuckin life he must have.

    Perhaps I should really feel sorry for people so sadly afflicted with pessimism, but I do not. They just piss me off bringing their sad shit into other peoples lives. Go away and rot in your own miserable world FFS.

  157. JJ, I hope RVP is over the injury thing. I wouldnt have anotther striker, he is class.

  158. I dont agree with everything but this article is good, ithink.


  159. paul, that article in the express is a little dodgy. That guy uses the designation of “international class” players. lol we are a team of fucking internationals. i can’t even really think of any players we have who do not have international caps. maybe denilson. i’m pretty sure we have 3 or 4 international captains as well. Andrey, Rosicky, TV5, and even Nasri has been the captain once or twice.

  160. Paul N and duke make up! Just in time for the Royal Wedding.

  161. We don’t need an external replacement for Denilson, should he leave. We’ve got enough cover for that position, between Frimpong, Ramsey, and Coquelin.

    We may need another goal scoring, pacy, wide forward, preferably left footed. Vela would have been nice but he hasn’t exactly shown he’s got what it takes. Players like Hazard come to mind, but his cost might be a problem. Can’t think of other similar options at the moment..

  162. Why can’t our wise customers see what is plain to see?

    A quote from the manager of today’s opponents, Coyle:

    “If I wasn’t a football manager and someone said who would you go and watch, I would watch Arsenal every week because I love the way they play and the quality of the players they have,” said Coyle.

    “Arsene Wenger is, always has been and always will be a truly outstanding manager, one of the best in world football.

    “We’ve had arguments along the way but you can never doubt the quality of Arsene Wenger as a manager and the teams he’s built after he’s lost some of his big players.”

    And Owen Coyle has to point this out, ffs

  163. I don’t mind Owen Coyle much. Seems to be a decent enough person, not like Twitchy, who just has to the piss out of our manager every opportunity he gets. Classless fool.

  164. this over attack on Wenger has shown me the evil face of the english press. French people take notice. some people need to look in the mirror. Whats with this lust of loosers to bring people down and ruin their lives. they will not succeed.

    In the next 2 years we will win at leats 2 trophies and then it will get better from there. I just know it. i am patient ansd I will wait. And when it happens I will celebrate like no mans business.

    I love this team and still believe in them. No matter what. i hate the last few weeks. its been gut wrenching. But As long as we keep our guys we will be okay. Frankly, Nasri, cesc etc have no damn right leaving right now. They have unfinished business. And lets be fair barca dont really need cesc. They have been doing fine without him.

    rant over.

  165. Although, I can’t say that I’ve enjoyed many of our games this season from a purely footballing perspective. Our normally fluid passing game have not been anywhere close to its best this season. Too many times, in too many games we simply haven’t clicked, in the way we are ‘normally’ able.

  166. Who’s the press? F**k them. I don’t need the press to tell me my team &coach have messed up season after season. I don’t even need the likes of viera,parlour,merson,petit,wright, graham,fabregas etc to tell me that, but if they do i’d bloody well salute them. &if somebody tells me this is the best bunch of arsenal players in 15years, i’m gonna tell him to go eat shite, but if he’s the coach? I’d say it was time for him to go

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