“Why her?”. There’s a song about that, hell – even a movie. A sentiment that captures the thoughts in the Gooniverse about Alexis Sanchez moving to United. The thoughts of a jilted lover who has lost out to that playground bully who keeps taking our talent and giving Arsenal their hand-me-downs. Not that the alternative of Manchester City was an option that was palatable. It’s an indicator of our station in life, a clear message for Arsenal to “accept and move on”.
The thing is, we already knew that. At times it feels like Arsenal’s transfer policy is being handled by Frank Spencer, you know him, right? He from the TV show “Some Mothers Do Have Them”. Indeed, some clubs do have them. Officials who have displayed a level of breath-taking and spectacular incompetence, it’s amazing that their actions are not considered criminal. To their credit, they didn’t lie to Arsenal fans. We were told there will be transfer activity. Gabriel, Le Coq, Theo and Alexis leaving in the same season is a hell of a lot of activity. Hey, not all is a loss, we did get Alexandre Lacazette, right?
£450,000 a week in salary and image rights, a £30 million signing on fee, a chance to play for a manager who wins trophies. If Man City can baulk at Sanchez’s additional demands once Mourinho thrust his ugly snout into the mix, Arsenal never had a chance to keep the Chilean. Football mercenaries don’t get a better payday than that at 29. But then again, who here would raise their hand and pretend they wouldn’t sprint to the Arsenal exit door if such a deal was on offer? Hell, if it was me, I’d be asking who I have to bite the pillow for to get that deal.
It’s just a reminder how far away Arsenal is from the top table. Financially, we’re not even in the same league. We think we are, but both in financial muscle and footballistically as Wenger likes to say, we’re in the comfort zone provided by the long grass of mid-table mediocrity. Alexis’s agent, Fernando Felicevich knows this; all other clubs know this; as well as all Arsenal fans and rival fans around the world. Only, the corridors at Highbury House seem to be a setting somewhere in a parallel universe, club officials incapable of waking up and smelling the coffee.
Developing A New Resolve Is Insanity We Can’t Afford
You know what the Chinese sages say about insanity? Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. Yup, we’re stuck on a special kind of stupid. “I won’t resign, I have a new resolve and commitment” is absolutely what you don’t want Arséne to say when asked if he will resign in response to the turmoil in the club. Yet there he is saying it. There is a dark irony if you consider the boiling frog syndrome. Throw one in boiling water and it jumps right out. Place it in cold water and slow burn your way to boiling point and the frog won’t have a chance because it can’t get out of its comfort zone.
Perhaps it’s time to send in the men in grey suits. Ivan and Arséne aren’t the only ones who need a sit down. Wiggy also needs a serious sit down with the grey suits. It’s surprising that for someone with an Economics degree, Arséne doesn’t recognize that he’s way past the point of diminishing returns. Like an addict living in denial, an “intervention” may be the only way to save Arsenal from itself. The problem is that no one seems to want to bell this cat. Well laid plans, Eh!
Is The Light At The End Of The Tunnel An Oncoming Train?
At Highbury House, they don’t think it is. Only they won’t get to know until the sound of the engine eclipses the dumbfounded “Oh bugger…” deer-in-the-headlights look just before impact. Perhaps it’s time to accept that the management and board structure at Arsenal is beyond salvage. Yet, we still have the rest of the season to play, a small matter of a semi-final return leg and the Europa league.
I’m trying to recall the last time Arsenal authoritatively won a game and I’m struggling. Certainly not in January. There’s little to be excited about, even if Wenger claims that we’re getting new shiny “big name” players before the circus leaves town in 12 days. Of course, Arsenal will argue they’re big names if you consider our mid-table station in life. A station nowhere near the top table of European football. Mourinho can’t even wait to drop kick Hennrikh Mkhitaryan out of the back door at Carrington for Arsenal to grab their scraps.
There is that irony of course, that for all of the madness of selling Alexis to a bigger club, Arsenal is doing the same to Dortmund with the pursuit of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. The jury’s still out on whether Arsenal in its current reincarnation is even bigger than the German club. As far as Dortmund’s Sporting Director is concerned, Wenger is disrespectful and should focus on getting his players to perform instead of throwing a fox amongst the Dortmund hens.
Chin Up Folks, It Could Be Worse
A raised chin is very attractive to another fist swinging your way. You’d hope that the Eagle’s visit to the Emirates tomorrow isn’t another sucker punch and is a chance to enjoy football again. It really is difficult to know what to expect from Arsenal following the performances in the last few weeks.
With the return of Koscielny and Monreal, you’d hope that the madness in defence would be tempered. A chance for the two to reorient themselves with Mustafi before the return leg of the League Cup semi-final. But you already know Wenger will dumfound all of us with his team selection tomorrow, right?
Have an encouraging weekend good people.