By George! Against All Odds

George is missing Fans Forum, so he’s offered his thoughts on recent comments and posts

We are Arsenal, we should be winning trophies

It’s a variation of a statement that I hear time and time again. And time and time again, I wonder about the intelligence of the person making said statement. It’s the same as Phil Thompson and his ilk endlessly saying, “This is Liverpool football club we are talking about, we should be competing for the Premiership”.

Being Arsenal entitles us to nothing, any more than me being British entitles me to rule the world.

It seems to be that some of our fans are behaving like King Canute, expecting to turn back the tide that comes in the form of overwhelming financial expenditure by our rivals. I was talking to Muppet the other day and he gave me an analogy that I would like to expand on, and you to consider.

Imagine we are a racing car team. Competing and winning on an equal basis with another team. Now, two new teams come on the scene, they buy faster cars than us. That’s OK because our team has been together for years, we can still compete as we have the best driver. He gives us the edge.

The following year these two new teams buy an even faster car and our old rival, the biggest racing team in the world, joins in and buys a similarly expensive and faster car. On top of that our best mechanic goes to them on twice the wage we used to pay him. The mechanic we had lined up to replace him decides to go to one of the others as well.

Eventually, despite us still having the best driver, his car is just not fast enough to keep up. Of course we could go out and buy a faster car, we could mortgage the house but the other three would just go out and spend even more and we would be no better off.

In the end, when the financial gulf become too great, all the old values that allow you to compete are less relevant. When the gulf is small or even medium, then things like teamwork, hard work and fighting spirit can give you the chance to win. But the bigger the gulf, the less effect they have. It’s the same in every walk of life. To ignore the realities of finance is nothing more than stupidity. Of course people say that if you spent more, you would compete better. Well yes, that is correct but over-simplistic.

No team has won the Premiership without hugely outspending its direct rivals for a sustained period, prior to the win. Other than Arsenal. But at that time, the gulf was bridgeable. Now it is not and on top of that, there are three of them rather than one.

Sadly, us losing our best players year on year is having its effect. Every year a new team. Jack is back after seventeen months and hardly knows anyone (in football terms) that he is sharing the field with. People can say we don’t have to sell them or we should pay them more to stay. I say, “Get real”, we are so outgunned that it’s a joke.

The growing opinion seems to be that as we cannot compete financially, we should replace the best Manager we have ever had with a new one. Presumably one with the skills King Canute hoped he had.

Well best of luck with that logic.

And this much vaunted “middle way” is simply a variation on the way we are doing it. All that said, as long as we have Arsène, I think we have hope. Without him? I’m not so sure.

 ’til Tomorrow.

393 thoughts on “By George! Against All Odds

  1. George @ 4.24
    Compared to City/chelski, United haven’t spent that much. In fact according to muppets own calculations, they have overachieved more than us when u look at total spend(wages + transfers).

    Is that all you disagreed with in my 4.20 post? Can I take it that you agree with the rest of it?

  2. Apologies for comparing Pires to Arshavin. We all know who could wing it. And who wanted to play for us!

    An interesting exploration would be to see if we were paying Pires the market wage at that time? What about rest of the invincibles?

    And before you rush to inform us that we should count for the ‘doping money’ that has flooded into other clubs, let me remind you that, it’s exactly why we need to be more flexible with our approach. We need to be dynamic in response to our financials, rather than ‘oh we’ve committed for the long run’ so we can’t compete anymore. We can compete. I hear we are one of the clubs that’s made quite lot of profit through players exchange. And that huge wage bill? The quality of our title challenge doesn’t really reflect that we are competing for the title this season. We’re competing for the third or fourth. It’s an interesting ride, but I for one, would like our team to be doing much better.

  3. I agree with Bill. Things have to get reaaly bad for him not to continue. I don’t see that happening.

  4. While I am glad we have someone like Cazarola who can eventually lead us to a third or fourth position this season, I frankly, would have like to see him enjoy his time here as well. Play with world class strikers, who can help him ease into the game. With someone like Robin and Song around, we could have eased in our new players rather than throwing them into the wild like that. Not good enough. No wonder they are short on confidence when the big moment comes.

  5. If it would have taken £10m a year to keep Robin, I think that would have been ideal for us. That is the sort of wages he’s getting at United. I don’t see why we can’t take the wage structure on a ‘case by case’ basis rather than a ‘formula’ to be employed upon everyone.

    And no, I don’t think everyone will jump up demanding 200k. Neither the players are stupid, nor the board or manager. We do our best to keep our wages low. In fact, we sell to keep our wages low. I don’t think that’s the right approach.

  6. George;

    Well done mate. You are nothing if not consistent, unlike most on here (including me!) 🙂

    Henristic, I dont think the spending argumeny made by george has anything to do with blips and dips in form during the season, just that, ultimately, he feels we are well stimmied when it comes to trying to win titles. It is a valid point, but I still feel we have had chances to win things regardless of other teams, yet came up short due to our own failings.

    The squad has lacked depth for years and even this summer that was clear. Now the form has dipped again and we have the same old rehashed ‘debates’. The length of time the team was in a slump post the Carling Cup final was more than alarming. Now we have gotten ourselves into yet another slump and its worrying because of past occurrences. How long the team takes to get out of THIS slump is anyone’s guess.

    The lack of rotation is also a concern to me. How the likes of Arshavin and Chamakh have been allowed to simply drop off the radar in terms of the 1st team is baffling. I would have to question the manager’s man management of those and other players, whose confidence has sunk without trace and never looked like returning. Thankfully, both played their way into sorm form vs Reading and I would get them in the team and allow others to be rested, starting with the game this weekend.

    With that in mind, here’s my team for Saturday;

    Jenkinson – PerM – Koscielny – Miquel
    Theo – Coquelin – Ramsey – Arshavin
    Chamakh – Giroud

    Ive gone 4-4-2 only because I couldnt think of how to accomodate the 2 strikers otherwise.

  7. Lets be serious;

    Its a pointless argument man, the lying dutchman wanted out. The idea that giving him £200k a week and everything would be rosey, is an over simplification. I felt we should have just held him to his contract, but as we saw with Samir, that isnt something the board like to do.

    BUT anyways, I aint one to wax lyrical about paying our players £200k= wages. We shouldnt need to, to hang onto them. Cesc wouldnt have stayed for more cash, Nasri probably would have, but RvP was gone and remains GONE too! 🙂

  8. “but I still feel we have had chances to win things regardless of other teams,2
    I agree Dexter .The question is were we in the position to win because of Arsene or did we not win because of Arsene.The latter seems to be the “new” thinking on ACFL.

    Ateeb .Fuck off your are unremittingly tedious.

  9. PURPLE REIGN, PURPLE REIGN…The DOUBLE is still on..they can stuff the QUAD!

    make sure you come back soon Frank,
    tomorrow would be nice.


  10. Dexter,

    Exactly. And now since we don’t seem to be growing talent, which at one point we were-with the likes of Persie, Nasri or Robin in our youth rank-we would have to think how to guarantee having world class players from the market and paying them as well. Along with keeping the likes of Wilshere and Gibbs.

    We shouldn’t have a wage ceiling as such. Let them oscillate. We can win trophies to generate revenues as well. Even if we don’t, atleast we’re selling our image better at the European games when it comes to competing with the best (Sponsorships etc). We can’t even do it in our own league at the moment. Surely, if United took as much time as Yogi says (8 Years), we need to be more active in that department and learn from United i.e we would need to build the image of the club on winning trophies. I don’t think the’re mutually exclusive.

    Did Robin signed a contract that he won’t demand a certain wage, just as any other player of his talent can get demands and gets in top European clubs? In fact, paying the likes of Denilson and Bendtner is faulty, rather than not paying our best players.

    And I am surprised you’re continuing to complain about not paying the better players, but silent about the above mentioned issues.

    The rumour is Arsene acts like City, when it comes to buying in the market. The difference is that we pay over the odds for young players-in the hopes of seeing them develop. In a similar vein as City pays over the odds for developed world class players. I don’t see the difference. I might, if we kept our better players. But I don’t see it otherwise.

  11. I would like to keep Arsene as a talent spotter in our club-rather than a manager. But I suppose, given the high wages he could earn at other clubs he would surely leave.

    It would be interesting to see how well he would do elsewhere. He’s not won for a while. With one or two bad seasons, with some other team, his reputation could really be damaged-given that he’s not won here for a long time. Can he win? I don’t know. He would need to spend a bit more and flush his wage formula.

  12. “Best to do a post-mortem when a body is dead, otherwise it is likely to be painful, and unnecessary.” – Frank

    28 EPL games left…@ least 2 more CL….@ least 1 C1C
    …pls get off your chicken littles and keep believing.

    YW..AW retiring @ the end of this season pre-the FFP bite-back & 2014-smarter money-kick-in??

  13. George:

    “The question is were we in the position to win because of Arsene or did we not win because of Arsene.”

    I think both are true at the same time. Arsene’s ability to spot and bring in talent in the previous decade gave us squads that were strong enough to win up to and including the 10/11 team. (Things have changed since the summer of 2011). The bottom line is we could not win despite having a playing squad which was good enough. You might think the board was partly responsible for our transfer and wage strategy, however,no one would argue that Arsene was not in complete control of everything that happened on the pitch so he has to take responsibility for what happened on the pitch.

    If you are giving credit for everything that is good then he also deserves responsibility for what has gone wrong. No?

  14. George;

    There is no doubt we were in those positions due to the manager, but as with the accolades, he has to bare the brunt of criticism as well, something he can more than cope with.


    Erm, I dont get what you are saying? We were talking about the dutchman and you’ve gone right off on a completely different tangent. Almost j*bbering man! 🙂 What denilson and bendtner have to do with paying or not RvP £200k a week is beyond me? Footballers, even Reading’s 3rd choice GK will be on obscene wages compared with 99% of the planet’s population.

    To try and go along with you, I think we have spent far too much time, effort and money going after unproven kids for the over side of the world, I find it pretty tacky and distasteful, just as barca did with messi (they got effin lucky didnt they!)But there are 100s of others who get shipped across the world to new countries, cultures etc at ridiculously young ages and never make the grade.

    Watching Arsenal do the same doesnt sit too comfortably with me and when you see the likes of Wellington, Gallindo, Pedro Botehlo, Vela etc getting signed and never playing for us (apart from Vela, obvs!) doesnt help.

  15. great post today george, although like all analogies it doesn’t fit exactly thats no reason to rubbish it as some have tried.I have made the point many times on here that if you look at our position in the long term we are on the up.most people think football only started in 2004 and so we are on the slide when this clearly not the case.
    I also cant understand the perception that chelski have changed their style,it is clear they have bought more ball players but this does not hide the contain and counter style they have used since the roman arrived(last night home game an example of this when chelski once again had less possesion than their opponents).we have gone many years before without trophies and this will happen again to all the top teams as you cannot win everything all the time.

  16. wow, when Ox is back we will have four, maybe five England players. When is the last time that ever happend????

    Jack, Jenks, Ox, theo, Gibbs plus ramsey for Wales.

    thats just crazy!

    Does any other team supply that many England players? Maybe United?

  17. We’ve had our players replaced, our coaching and medical staff, and quite recently the manager’s assistant. And yet, we are far from putting a worthy title challenge for the third season in a row. Aresne though has been here for a long time. One could argue the board’s logic hasn’t changed too much either along with Arsene. Is this another year in transition? Every club goes through a transition, just as United and Chelsea are, I though can see which are doing much better than ours. If anything, we could learn from Chelsea, is that through winning a few trophies, one can quickly generate advertisement revenues. We also, don’t need to spend too much, given that we have already have some really good players. Maybe a couple of quality additions can change our fortunes.

    And what about Arsene? The chef can’t keep up with changing tastes. Old flawed ideas that have failed in the past and show no signs of succeeding even now. An excellent manager when it comes to spotting talent and to a certain extent grooming them. However, can’t rally the troops any more. Can’t keep them. Abandoned by a lot of players. Haven’t won for a long time to success. How can he when he continues to sell our performing players on the one hand on the other relegating others to the bench for not accepting the wage offer? We need to be critical of the people who have led us to this situation and bridge gap between the fans, rather than creating a divide-as Bob quite eloquently put today. Like I’ve said before, this name calling doesn’t really help AKB vs Doomers.

    I would have liked Arsene to succeed with the players we’ve sold in the last three seasons. I am sure all of us would like to see our players win here, rather than elsewhere. For that, we do need to change the way our club operates. And we need to be critical, especially because our approach hasn’t changed based upon the evidence of this summers.

  18. Dexter,

    Bendtner, Denilson and robin found themselves in the wage structures of Arsenal. Apparently, the first two have been extremely fortunate by securing over the market wages at Arsenal-given that we can’t seem to offload them. On the other hand, someone like Robin, has been sacrificed because our wage ceilings doesn’t allow wages that let’s say someone like Untied, City, Bayern, Barca pay to their players.

    I frankly, was not one of those who would be crying for high player purchases, but now, I do think we need to bring in perhaps another quality player. As for wages? We should pay them, maybe if we had a winning team, they might settle for a lower wage-you know team spirits and DNAs-but at the moment I don’t see either one of those. Haven’t for a long time. Always struggling. If not in November than in March.

  19. lol ” chelsea and utd doing better than us ” gold medal for stating the obvious, read the post again spend millions/billions and you will do better than us no rocket science needed there.
    The question you need to ask yourself again is has Arsene failed in recent seasons or has he achieved the best he could resonably achieve?

  20. Yes george! 🙂

    Looks like I wasted those few minutes replying thinking there was an actual salient point there, but nope, my bad. I

  21. JJ,

    442? At least our attackers might less to complain about. Perhaps play better as well. Gervinhio plays better as a striker than a winger. Podolski claimed today that he too would like to play as a striker. Theo same.. Giroud can only play as a striker (as it appears). I don’t see the harm in trying something like that. Could be interesting. Given that nothing else seems to be working for the last five games, why not?

  22. Seriously though I don’t think anything but 442 has won the league. Even Blackburn had Sutton and Shearer.

  23. Id welcome back 4 4 2 , never been a fan of one striker. Theo playing off Giroud, or Podolski ,Girud. Podolski – Walcot… Girud and Chamack for Stoke games…

  24. Well, it seems that the prevailing zeitgeist is a very negative one. Is this Arsene’s denouement? I think Yogi feels it might be. There is definitely a preponderance of anti-Wenger posters everywhere I surfed tonight. It’s very sad because I feel it too. This is the first time that I have felt despair at the quality of the team’s football. I’m beginning to wilt under this growing pessimism. All I want is to enjoy the fantastic football we have come to expect. Of course, Arsene is not the only coach that can deliver such a high standard of football. Besides, I was very impressed with Shakhtar Donetsk last night. But it will be very sad day when Arsenal and Arsene part company.

  25. Not only do I not eat fish and chips in a football ground, I have never eaten fish and chips in a football ground. Nor have I ever known anyone to eat fish and chips in a football ground. No not at Highbury either. Why would anyone do that when they can get stuff like that very cheaply from just outside the ground….and that goes for any top class ground in the country. AND I don’t want anyone eating fish and chips near me when I am watching a game.

    Thank you, YW, for the opportunity to get that off my chest. Feeling much better now. Better out than in as they say.

  26. Another striker. I like it.

    Podolski my choice for second striker. Not a huge fan of gervinho but he has been much better in his limited times when he played in the middle so he can rotate with OG and LP. Walcott much better suited for right wing rather then centrally and he is the only effective option in the squad at least to this point on he right so he needs to stay out wide.

  27. I don’t we are even close to AW leaving the club, thank goodness. I think some people need to go and have a cup of tea, go for a walk, and have a lie down. It works for me.

  28. Going to be tough for arsene to drop the 433. Big deal has been made how we play the exact same way from the lowest academy levels to the first team. Switching mid season also may cause some indigestion

  29. @Frank at 8:46 pm

    I’m sipping a hot cup of tea as read these posts. I appreciate your encouragement. I am a die-hard Wenger fan. But I am having my doubts now. I have my own speculative list of Wenger mistakes. However, I want the team and him to turn it around soon…

  30. According to the Physio Room, Tomas is a week away from fitness. No news on Abou but assuming it will take 6 weeks for his thigh strain to be healed add another 2-3 weeks to get fully fit that takes him into December.

  31. Frank.

    I have no doubt arsene will be the one to decide when the end is here no matter what else happens. Board will be happy forever as long as nothing changes.

  32. Frank

    As I said earlier I expect he will stay for several more seasons. Not hopeful but I wish he would shake up the assistant coaching staff and bring in some new ideas. Ideally there would be another David Dein like figure added to the front office who would have the cajones to share football idea’s with the boss. Sneaky suspicion that Steve Bould may not stay, but hopefully I am wrong.

  33. George, you are a defeatist. To say we can now only get top 4 is wrong I reckon. With the squad we have which everyone was raving about as better then utds Wenger should do better then 4 th . With a little investing we would do and would have done better then 4 th. / 3 rd.

  34. Duke, IF we can get our players now, we will be the side to watch. Never mind your darling leaving, we have some excellent players right now.

  35. Duke ,I know we can.What I am saying is that because of the fact there are now 3 clubs that hugely outspend us,steal our players and targets,the odds of us winning a major trophy PL or CL is diminishing year on year.
    As no one has done it since the Oil money arrived ,it kind of adds weight to my argument,don’t you think?

  36. I would like to ask Duke and people with his view a question.
    Which other clubs should be able to do better than third ? Or is it just us that should be able to bridge the gap.?

  37. I have a natural dislike for Young Mr Grace and Chips Keswick. I have a respect for Ken Friar as a Project Manager. Ivan Gazidis bores me witless and I have never trusted anyone called Stanley especially with a moustache and toupee. They are inherently conservative and risk averse, and have no connection with supporters. Apart from that I have no problem with the Board.

  38. George;

    I think when I go to games like the recent Norwich one and see us under perform, or not even turn up, any questions over competing with the chavs, Oily mancs and red uns goes out the window.

    I just want to se the team/players etc playing their hearts out. If after all that, we end up with a pot, brilliant, if not, well at least they tried their utmost.

    I know players lose form, but ours do it increasingly easily and take forever to get their mojos back. The constant need/want to sell the best players may well have caught up with Wenger and the Red Adare job he’s been doing for years might just be a step too far this season.

    I hope Im well off here as there is plenty of games and time for things to change.

    As I said earlier, freshening things up a bit and utlising players who have barely had a look in could be one way to get the team playing a bit better, although Tuesday’s showing was much improved.

  39. Bill @6.11,

    Sorry, had to go out and play tennis for my club at doubles. We got stuffed 8-0 !. Not got any excuses such as lack of resources and transfer funds 🙂 More – too much alcohol and chocolate.

    Overall, I would agree with your points if we knew that to be the truth. That is, the premise that Wenger is calling the shots. I am not defending Wenger, but I think the situation is not as black and white as you paint. Wenger may not be asking for funds because he is committed or even understands the constraints of the clubs budget. It could be a case that he would not ask for money to sign a player like Falcao, because he knows intrinsically that he is way out of price range. Falcao would cost £80m to £100m once the transfer fee, wages and agents fees are taken into account. You may argue that he should ask for players cheaper than this, but how do we know that he doesn’t ? The club doesn’t broadcast it’s internal memoranda.

    I supposed your comeback, and it’s the view of YW that Wenger could throw his toys out of the cot and force the issue with the board. My view on that is how do we know that hasn’t already happened ? The problem is that again, it may be down to the sheer sums of money involved. How much would we need to be really competitive ? Let’s say – £300m. Who on the board would be willing to lose this amount of money ? Or on the flip side, any investment of that kind of magnitude would warrant a serious return. They would want to double their money, even triple it. I think that no money has been forthcoming because those on the board can see our share price rocketing anyway, even if we continue to finish just in the top 4.

  40. we only needed a decent defender and a keeper a few years back to win the league…truth is we don’t need alot, nowhere near £300m more like £30m. or an rvp 5 year wage bill.

  41. Yes Duke so you keep saying .It is of course 100% speculation.
    But my speculation is at least backed up by ALL the outcomes and who has won.
    Now will you answer my 10.00pm question ?

  42. now all we needed to win the league this year was rvp and song to add to this squad.

    hands up who after the end of last season thought if we just kept this team together we have a real chance at the league…with a couple of signings…….yep i see george’s hand up already.

  43. no its not speculation george as our poor defending and gk errors cost us that year, can you not remember??

  44. Muppet

    Sorry you got stuffed in your game.

    I suspect the arsene is in control and could have had a lot more from the board if he wanted. The financial constraint we have lived with may have started as a necessary evil but it morphed into something completely different over time. It’s become our identity to try to succeed while still making transfer profits and a huge reserve fund even if we don’t need them The lack of investment and the transfer profits of the last 2 seasons now that the debt is under control makes it difficult to come to any other conclusion for me. The debate is interesting but the end point that we always fall back on is that we don’t know for sure.

  45. dont forget george, how many times has wenger said he has money to spend but has the squad to win the league?? what was all that about then?? he wasnt lying was he too keep us beleiving/spending. or did he really believe we had the squad but then underachieved by not winning it.

  46. Muppet

    I think that arsene was the best field manager in the world in the first 1/2 of his era, even better then fergie. Something changed because there is no way anyone would believe that now. I wish he had kept his focus and his priorities on the field. If we would have maintained a more traditional relationship with the manager focusing on the field and doing everything he could to make the team better then the last 7 years might have been different. We wouldn’t have paid off the stadium debt at an accelerated rate and the reserve fund would not be so fat but I suspect the board would have kept the club from financial implosion and we probably would have several trophies in our cabinet.

  47. Duke ,Speculation is exactly what it is .What is not speculation is that the oil funded clubs have won things and ALL clubs that have not spent north of £800 million have not.

  48. Yogi, a very good show!

    PG, has brought Frank back to the fold. This site needs people who can THINK and debate, without becoming embroiled in trench warfare!

    Bill! An October salary cheque (damn the U.S. wordcheck!), has to cover the November bills yet to be paid. The Arsenal cash pile as at 31st May 2011, has to cover 12 months expenditure, beginning 1st June 2012 to 31st May 2013. Fortunately there are further revenue streams to cover the shortfall, on past performances.

    Nice to see you, Frank!

  49. No Duke ,he was wright ,we could have won,What he does not say is what chance he believes we have relative to the big spenders.
    Last year ,in theory,Spurs had a chance to win.But it was a slim chance.Just like we have a chance ,not quite as slim ,but slim all the same.

  50. so you dont think if we bought a keeper and a per mertersacker a few years ago when we were making mistakes left right and center in defense we would not have won the league?? are you saying there was nothing we could have done to change the course of time and outcome?? c’mon george dont be a silly billy.

  51. We should have won the league in 03 but we didn’t. What does that matter ?Its as gone as the season you are talking about .What I have been saying all day is year on year ,circumstances are making it more difficult .And those circumstances are brought about because of the injection of Oil money.
    Do you disagree?

  52. Bill,

    Thanks. I’ve got over it now 🙂

    To me, the issue of transfers (not signing players) and being in profit is quite simple. I don’t think it’s some sanctimonious crusade to be self sustainable.

    We are not spending money on transfers, partly I believe, because Wenger is looking for value in the market, whilst ensuring the player is Arsenal quality. And partly because, if the player is a known quantity, we are being beaten to the player by Chelsea, Manchester United, City or other continental opposition. Such players are rare in my view, in either case, which explains a lack of signings in certain positions. Of course, people will scoff at this, but I think it’s true. You telling me that we wouldn’t have signed Falcao if he was available at a snip and not sought after by all the other major clubs in europe ? The alternative is to sign a mediocre player who would just weaken the squad.

    We are in profit because Wenger is able to develop players and sell them on. Of course, some, like Van Persie and Cesc, are sold, arguably to the detriment of the club’s results, even if we are in financial profit. Anelka, Song, Toure are good examples where we have made very good profits. This may seem a bit prosaic, but I think it’s true.

  53. No of course it is harder since the oil money has come in. the majority of fans are not calling for us to just win the league as we know its a tall order, but the club behave as if they have accepted that they cant compete and will settle for top 4 and instead making profits.

  54. Song , good profit…fukin useless now, id rather have Song in the team thanks muppet wouldnt you! oh i forgot, due to a leaked bit of propaganda he is a bad egg.

  55. So all you want is for the people who put up the money to buy the club ,is to put that investment a little more at risk?
    Its not like they have taken any of this profit away and bought a yacht.It is still in the club .It is there to be used for the benefit of the club .Your gripe is that they don’t spend it the way you want them to.
    Is that about the size of it Duke?

  56. Duke ,have you considered that he may have been a bad egg?
    RVP certainly turned out to one.Or would you have forgiven him also?

  57. no my gripe is they dont spend any of it in any way anyone wants to.

    like i say if only they spent a little bit we would be in a much better position and all us gooners would be getting on like a house on fire!

  58. Duke,

    I am not saying that the profit is good or bad. I’m just commenting why we are able to make profits. Yes, Song would be useful now – we are light in midfield with the absence of Diaby and I am confused as to why Coquelin hasn’t played more.

    That said, I am not disillusioned about it. We’ve been unlucky with the injuries to both Rosicky and Diaby, and the return of Wilshere, whilst factored in, has been a long time in coming. It looks like we will go for another midfielder in the January transfer window now.

  59. anyway george i might have been a tad harsh earlier, the post was not complete tosh. you do have a point about the oil money as it is inveariably the richest teams that win leagues but its not always the case, like i have said before wenger has or did have the upper hand with his coaching skills that gave us an advantage.

    by the way george, dont be so scared about when wenger goes. we will be alright i have followed the arse since 89 and have seen us have good times before 96 aswell.

  60. have we been unlucky with the injuries to rosicky and diaby though?? this is the point, even my wife knew diaby and rosicky would get injured and therefore we would be down to the bare bones. it was a high risk cost cutting strategy and wenger should have brought someone in to prepare fo it. or kept song.

  61. yes george our players have all forgiven him, oh i forgot he got them all pay rises before he went!

  62. Nah Duke. Can agree that there was some risk, but not cost cutting. Rosicky and Diaby are players who would give us a big edge – we need them. I think it’s unlucky to have both players out at the same time. After all, Rosicky played for us last season. I don’t know the details of this latest injury. Is it the same one from before ?

  63. Duke ,don’t think for a moment I don’t understand each and every one of your concerns.
    And don’t think I have not considered them myself.I have and I am of a mind that Arsene is the best man for the job .
    I just accept that he is doing his best ,and that will do for me.
    Call it blind faith if you like .but believe in him I do.

  64. Stupid analogy. I blame Muppet. Obviously brainwashed George.
    “Imagine we are a racing car team” – Why? We are a fucking football club, always have been and always will be. Is the situation really so convoluted that we need to resort to analogies? Or are people on this blog, so unable to grasp why we are where we are, that they need it explained to them in “racing car team terms”? I did not know we had so many experts on how to run a Racing Car Team!! Pfft!! What a load of MEH!

    Come back James, all is forgiven mate. Let’s face it, at least he was entertaining!

  65. PG,

    Sorry, I don’t have as much time as usual to read the blog but belated apologies for misdirected praise.

    Well done and thanks

  66. PG

    The only aspect of the post yesterday that I disagreed with, was you saying that AW at the helm is the only imaginable scenario that could be good for Arsenal FC; whereas this is exactly contrary to what AW himself is looking to achieve, which as he has stated many times – to leave things in a state where any manager can come in and pick up where it was left off by AW with as little turmoil as possible..

    I am not for one moment saying we need to even think of replacing Arsene, just that its his aim that Arsenal are not dependent on Arsene or any future manager for continuation of the high level/standards of performance..

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