Hindsight is a wonderful thing. We’ve all lived perfect lives in a perfect world with its’ benefit; becoming as boring as hell in the process. And never learned a damned thing either; knowing you can correct mistakes makes you lazy and uncaring.
Still, the number of Premier League titles Arsenal in the club’s ‘Roll of Honours’ increased and that’s all that matters. We weren’t robbed of Tomas Rosicky in his prime and Jack Wilshere is making his 600th appearance against Oestersunds FK on Thursday.
Celebrate good times, come on.
Arsène wishes he had hindsight before acting. He most certainly wouldn’t have sold Olivier Giroud had he known the situation with Alexandre Lacazette’s knee would occur. Wenger hinted that it must be why his compatriot hasn’t hit a cow’s arsenal with a banjo.
Which is just flim-flam from Sam the Sham. That’s a manager looking to protect a player, offering up excuses having, in my view, hung him out to dry previously. If he’s suffered a knee problem and not told anyone, it’s negligent on his part. While players want to play all the time, I’m pretty sure he’d want to have a problem sorted quickly in a World Cup season.
“Four to six weeks” before he returns, according to dot com. So, immediately that’s been extended to eight by everyone looking at the situation and Knackazette is now out until mid-April, instead of the end of next month as it should be. Oh, yea of little faith.
The door opens in Europe for Eddie! Eddie! Eddie! Danny Welbeck is the only player at the club who can lead the line in these games with PEA’s cup-tiedness getting in the way. But for this Round of 32, it’s a small irritation for Wenger. And a blessing; no selection problems in the EPL…
Think for a Minute
And for Wenger a welcome distraction. The main sporting heroes of the back pages, the fearless keyboard warriors of the truth, all came up with the same story yesterday. By pure coincidence, they wrote that the manager’s future is once more up for grabs this summer. Not beforehand, but this summer.
Sometimes it amazes me how they manage to pull together and in the same direction at the same time. It’s almost like they have a hive mind and were just awaiting the return of the Crystal Skull before putting fingers to keyboard.
Or they all got the same phone call from an Arsenal gopher. “Arsène’s toast…blah, blah, blah…winning trophies won’t save him…blah, blah, blah…Ivan is our leader and we all bow down before him…all hail the mighty Ivan!”; that kind of thing.
Ultimately, the decision over the manager’s future must be made this summer. As we’re still picking through the wreckage of the players’ contracts from previous mismanagement, it is a decision which can’t be kept secret either. The squad will want to know what is going on, so too new signings if they give a rat’s arsenal about which manager they are playing for. We’re frequently told he’s the reason everyone signs for the club, so it must be true.
Wenger said previously that he doesn’t want a trophy season. There’s no appeal for him in a valedictory parade around English grounds. Then again, he also claimed he didn’t want to be like Sir Bobby Robson – at the time 71 – and still managing, so what he says…
Does it serve Arsenal’s purpose in having the manager see out the final year? Not for footballing reasons, that’s for sure. He’d be a ‘lame duck’ but having got rid of troublemaker(s), is that an issue anymore?
If You Let Me Stay
If the manager stays beyond this summer, there can only be two reasons: Stan and Kroenke. There’s no secret that Ivan and Junior wanted the manager out last time around. The conflict for the manager to resolve is what benefit he has from seeing out the final year of his deal. Yes, he can say he never walked away from a contract – not through lack of trying in the past though – but in all honesty, does he need that final £12m in the bank, particularly with the grief it comes with.
The aphrodisiac of football management keeps him going and it’s why I can see him going to another club in an active role. There will also – most likely – be an international job or two going for him to choose from. That would be an equitable solution all round; there’s no ‘stigma’ on his part in moving to another club; international football is the testing ground most managers aspire to.
It works well for all and who knows, third time lucky, he might take the option of leaving on the back of a trophy-winning season.
There’s a long way to go between now and then though. And the one thing you can’t rule out is a new deal so under his spell is Stan. It just seems unlikely.