On Dynasty, Winning Mentalities & The League Cup

It’s Sunday, it’s the EFL Cup final and we don’t have a game because of it. Liverpool next weekend, followed by Bayern Munich and apparently, both are “crunch” games. No, me neither.

Bayern is over, done and dusted. We aren’t even playing for pride, that was stripped bare in Munich, along with all dignity. The Premier League likewise; it’s long been over, the top four is all which is left. That’s a financial prize, nothing more, nothing less. Playing in the Champions League isn’t about football; it’s about money. That is all it can be for clubs who can’t win and show no sign of improving their performance in the competition.

The question which I’m wrestling with is whether Arsenal would benefit from a season out of the Champions League in a footballing sense, or would Arsène – and I’m assuming he renews for the sake of this piece – treat it as nothing more than an inconvenience as he puts all of his eggs into a top four basket.

Hold on, the doom-mongers cry, fail to make the Champions League and we’ll lose our best players! No-one will sign for us! I thought they signed because Arsène is the manager, or at least that’s what you always tell me. As for losing our best players, there’s no evidence to suggest we’ll keep them, even with Champions League football.

Neither claim stands up to scrutiny.

Dynasty? Who’s His Joan Collins

According to reports this morning, Mourinho wants to build his “Manchester United dynasty” on the back of the League Cup, following it up with the Europa League. Never have I wanted Southampton to win more. And FC Rostov, for that matter.

But as a philosophy, it’s nothing new. He used it as Chelsea, winning habits were maintained with the EFL Cup even though I suspect he genuinely views it with the same contempt as Arsène.

Arsenal don’t take it that seriously. Whether Arsène should is debatable. The club has a chequered history with the League Cup. In 1968 and 1969, we lost to Leeds and Swindon but Bertie Mee found he had a side hungry for success out of it. Eighteen years – 18, it’s a very Arsenal number – later Charlie Nicholas scored, you know the rest.

A year later, Luton provided what we thought would be our nadir. Self-inflicted, the defeat chafed with Nigel Winterburn’s awful penalty miss and Gus Caesar’s Bambi on Ice routine. It couldn’t get worse. It did.

Living On Morrowed Time

1993 is remembered more for Merson’s goal celebration and Steve Morrow’s broken arm. The first English team to win the Cup double, this was the first leg. It was the best of three finals against Sheffield Wednesday which shows what a low bar in entertainment the neutral got that year. George Graham remains the only Arsenal manager to win the trophy.

in Arsène’s reign, 2006 saw his first final. We lost although how you can consider any match where John Terry gets a full-on volley to the head, as a defeat is beyond me. But 2011 eased the Luton memories, sinking to a new low as Koscielny and Szczesny contrived to throw away the game in the last minute.

Try telling people who went to the Luton and/or Birmingham games that the League Cup means nothing; it’s as painful as any other final defeat, especially when you’re heading in the opposite direction to the victorious fans, only to end in a carriage full of the gloating….

But no, the League Cup shouldn’t be our highest priority, but should we treat it more seriously? A way of keeping the winning habit alive, building experience for big occasions as a team, as a squad, so that all are prepared when their moment arrives?

Money, That’s What I Want

Too much stock is placed in a top four finish, blinded by the glittering stars of the Champions League. Then reality bites in humiliating defeats – same ground, same opponent, it really was Groundhog Day – and last sixteen exits. Would a ‘winning mentality’ have stopped the collapse in Munich? It might have made us more aware of the cat-and-mouse nature of these matches.

Obsession with playing attractive football is undermining success. When the club publishes strong financial results, more scrutiny falls onto the playing side. Is the club providing value for money? The current era of football genuinely doesn’t care. It’s about wealth management, from the owners down through the executives, manager and players. Arsenal are no different in that respect, nor are they a shining example either.

And money distracts from the approach. We need to regain a winning mentality, to have the players prepared to fight for the club. Whatever Alexis’ faults may be, lacking the hunger to win isn’t one of them. A few more could do with focusing that intently on the outcome. Who knows what might happen then.

Finally, 1993 landed on Dad’s Jukebox. Laze away your Sunday afternoon by listening here.

’til Tomorrow.

77 thoughts on “On Dynasty, Winning Mentalities & The League Cup

  1. Andy Kelly says:

    “The question which I’m wrestling with is whether Arsenal would benefit from a season out of the Champions League in a footballing sense”

    Probably not as it would likely mean a season in the Europa League which has all sorts of issues.

  2. YW says:


    Why’s that? Obviously more games but to have a chance of winning the trophy rather than knowing we’re out in the last 16 is surely better?

  3. Orson Kaert says:

    Good morning, I was at Wembley for that Swindon final, played on a mud heap thanks to the previous event at the stadium The Horse of the Year show, it mattered to me that we couldn’t beat little Swindon and if I never hear the name Don Rodgers again it will be too soon.

  4. C says:

    I know I shouldn’t care but and I mean this from the bottom of my heart and love for futbol but: FUCK ALL THE LEICESTER PLAYERS! Now that reports started naming names and saying the players played a major role in Ranieri’s firing all of them are coming out with bullshit social media posts and having just watched Schmechel’s interview that he gave, all of it seems scripted and so disingenuous.

    I don’t even know why I care so much.

  5. YW says:

    That’s modern football for you, C. And old football for that matter. Nothing so selfish as players!

  6. C says:


    I know so many of them are and itsa shame especially when a manager has literally given you everything you could dream of and more and not only do you let him down but then you give bullshit comments only after the media starts reporting and naming names. The only player from that squad I would have is Ndidi and that’s because he just came in January, the rest can all be relegated and fuck off.

  7. HenryB says:


    An individual fan’s perception is what drives their assessment of valid football logic, and yours is different from mine, it seems.

    On that premise, I totally disagree with your observation, in the Post — “….. the top four is all which [sic] is left. That’s a financial prize, nothing more, nothing less.”

    I do not disagree with you that finishing in the top four is all that is left for us this season, at best, and further that finishing first is probably unachievable – however much the fat lady might warble away.

    However a top 4 position, in the opinion of this fan, has sod all to do with a financial prize, however much that would exercise the minds of the management and owners.

    I care naught for the financial aspect of where Arsenal finish, and consequentially it does not keep me awake at night worrying about it. I would prefer to finish top, in fact, I long for it.
    I would be bitterly disappointed to finish second, like last season, but I would not carp at it, albeit 2nd is contiguous with losing, but it is losing with just just one club above us.

    I would not be sniffy at finishing 3rd, or 4th, with just 2 or 3 clubs finishing above us, but iteratively the lower we finish the more other clubs finish above us, and the horrible thought that at (say) finishing in 15th position there would be 14 other clubs finishing ahead of us? – Yeuk – that I would find unacceptable – especially if shitty Spurs were to win the League, or grab 2nd, or simply finish ahead of us. Ditto for West Brom, Stoke, Crystal Palace or any other of the makeweights in the Premiership showing us a clean pair of heels.

    No, sir. Unlike the financial aspect to wherever we finish, I do care about the above footballing matters – as does playing in the CL – not for me endless barren CL days watching other Premiership clubs cavorting about on TV, while Arsenal inhabit ‘Spursdays’, at best, or nothing, at worst.

    I am just an all in fan – and I want to watch the Arsenal whenever they play, including friendly pre-season games, as well as every tournament we qualify for, and I want the Gunners to win every single one – while realistically accepting that is hardly likely.

    Frankly, to repeat myself, I do not give a stuff, how much money the club owners have made – or not – that was not part of the deal when I became a lifelong Arsenal supporter, and neither do I see any benefit for the Arsenal fans in the club dropping out of the top 4.


  8. C says:

    Excellent post Yogi!

    It is interesting that Mourinho does seem to use the EFL Cup as a building block since his return to the PL. When you realize that they have lost, what only 1 match in their last 25; he seems to be getting it right but losing Mhkitaryan (sp?) will be a test for them. I hope Southampton either smashes them or scores the winner with the last kick of the game, really demoralize them.

    As for Arsenal.

  9. Mason Bison says:

    Personally, I would have enjoyed a day out at Wembley today supporting my team.

    It didn’t happen though because they didn’t take the competition seriously, under the auspices of challenging for more important honours which they are not good enough to win.

    The memory of the occasion, the big day out, is an important element in solidifying the bond between club and fan. The club seem to have forgotten this or just don’t attach enough importance to it.

  10. andy1886 says:

    I always find it amazing that intelligent people can think that it’s okay to put out a weakened side in cup competitions, lose, and then wonder why their form nose dives. Winning becomes a habit – losing (even if you change half the side) breaks that habit. Maybe if your first team has real ‘mental strength’ it’s less of an issue but FFS Arsenal under Wenger in the last decade are the last side that you’d want to even hear the word ‘defeat’ let alone be part of one.

    If we’re not aiming to win every single competition we enter then that’s simply not good enough. Who else can pick and choose which parts of their job they are going to actually make an effort in and which they are going to do half-arsed? Of course the odds of winning every competition are minuscule, doesn’t mean that you should try. And putting out a weakened side because you ‘believe’ (and sometime I doubt that it’s even true) that they can win the game is not an excuse.

    As for the CL I think that everyone knows my feelings about that, they match pretty closely YW’s view above. It’s all about the money, baby. So would I care if we didn’t make it? Nope. Would I care if Spurs were in it and we weren’t? Not really they have about as much chance of winning it as we do, which is almost zero. And it would stretch their resources and weaken them in the league (so the apologist claim when they explain Chelsea’s success this season).

    So bollocks to it, either do all you can to win or don’t bother.

  11. Bill says:

    Yogi. Awesome post.Really loving the pictures you are using. Somehow the Looney Tunes seem very appropriate. Foghorn Leghorn is easily the most under rated of the Looney Tunes characters and my favorite.

    Regarding the league cup, its certainly a question which divides opinions. Some think we should try to win while others enjoy the chance to see players like Jeff and Maitland-Niles or Perez or Joel Campbell get minutes. Unfortunately, using line ups with a mixture of academy and second string senior players and winning the cup has proven to be mutually exclusive. I guess to each fan his own.

    Whether or not winning the league cup would help to build a trophy winning mentality is highly debatable. We won the FA cup 2 seasons in a row and it has done nothing to change the culture that Arsene has built. We broke the trophy drought in May of 2014 when we won the FA cup and you would have thought that we could use that as a spring board. However, the start of the 14/15 season was World Cup hangover mode and perhaps the most frustrating display of player and manager apathy and the worst 1/2 season in the Wenger era.

  12. consolsbob says:

    Well, I agree with Andy.

    Picking and choosing which games to prioritise is just a daft idea.

  13. Orson Kaert says:

    A Kane hat-trick puts the unmentionables 3 – 0 up against Stoke after 37 mins.

  14. Orson Kaert says:


    I’d agree with that if we had a stronger squad, at present we have two right backs that we’ve been trying to sell for a couple of seasons, a crocked midfielder who won’t play this season, a newly signer striker who for some reason never gets a look in, another midfielder who when he isn’t injured slows the whole game down, and three lads who look as if they might make the bench in future seasons.

    Add to that other injuries and suspensions and we have a pretty threadbare squad, so a bit of prioritising becomes essential.

    Doolally Alli makes it 4 – 0 at half-time.

  15. C says:

    Orson Kaert,

    Yup, Stoke have defended scared and Hughes got it wrong again. I’m not sure why he came out so defensive, they have the players to play against Spuds.

  16. Bill says:

    Spurs certainly looking like a top 4 team based on the first half of today’s game. ManU has been playing well in the last couple months and they also look like a top 4 team. Man City is also going to be tough to over take and who knows what will happen with Liverpool. Last summer we were all predicting that this would be the toughest fight for a top 4 spot in the Emirates era and that prediction will almost certainly come true. We often accuse Arsene of being stubborn for good reason but he spent more then $100M for player acquisition in fiscal 2016 so obviously he saw the same thing coming. Whether it was money well spent is another question and that will only be answered at the end of the season when we see where we finish. I guess Arsene deserves some credit for his ambition to keep us in the top 4.

  17. Orson Kaert says:


    It’s all very well spending the money but what’s the point of buying a player, Perez, and not using him?

  18. consolsbob says:

    I get that Orson, but we have always done it in Arsene’s time, whatever the state of our squad which, on consideration, might tell us something!

  19. Orson Kaert says:

    Spurs are playing well but Stoke are clueless, their only tactic is to pump long balls up to Crouch whose touch is way off.

  20. HenryB says:


    The key point I made @ 1:03 pm was that we should always try to win every game.

    “I am just an all in fan – and I want to watch the Arsenal whenever they play, including friendly pre-season games, as well as every tournament we qualify for, and I want the Gunners to win every single one – while realistically accepting that is hardly likely.”

    I am really pleased that you have agreed with me in your comment @ 1:38 just in different words, when you said;

    “If we’re not aiming to win every single competition we enter then that’s simply not good enough.”

    I suppose most fans would agree with us on that. 🙂

  21. Bill says:


    Fresh snow on the slopes so I will get back to you later. In short, not all players are purchased with the intent of using them in the first 11 in the high leverage games

  22. Orson Kaert says:


    There have been plenty of not high leverage games that Perez could have been played.

    Enjoy the snow, is it skiing or sliding around on a big tea tray?

  23. C says:

    Ibra just scored an absolutely BRILLIANT free kick!

  24. C says:

    Is it fair to say that if we would have signed Ibra we would have won the PL? The problem is, Arsene doesn’t do personalities like Ibra’s anymore.

  25. C says:

    Here’s another question in regards to fighting for teh EFL and other cups, don’t you want players that perform no matter the magitude of the match? How would Perez be classified as a player that wouldn’t be up for any match no matter the pressure? He led the line against the likes of Barca, Real Madrid, Athletico, Valencia, Sevilla and Atheltic for a side that was below average and here are the results:

    Barca: 1 goal in 2 matches (they drew 2-2 away in one match and got slaughtered in the other)
    Madrid: 0
    Athletico: 1 goal in 1 mmatch (they drew 1-1)
    Atheltic: 1 goal in 2 matches
    Sevilla: 1 goal
    Valencia: 2 goals in 2 matches

    Thats 6 goals in 11 matches against the best sides in La Liga that beat PL sides.

  26. C says:

    Southampton are bossing this match and are unlucky to be down and should be up 2-1. Southampton need a goal and to be honest, if they get one I could see them really going on to win this.

  27. C says:

    Lingard grabs the 2nd goal with Southampton midfield switching off for just a moment. really is a shame because Southampton is playing them off the pitch but without the goals.

  28. C says:

    Lingard trips Stephens cynically and gets the yellow and in the “play on” Stephens chases the ball and clears out a Manure player and gets a yellow.

    One of those plays where the “play on” is dangerous.

  29. C says:

    I really like the cut of Gabbiadini, you see why he is so highly rated by all in Italy and Napoli were so desperate to keep him.

  30. C says:

    As I say that Gabbiadini scores and brings Southampton back 2-1, match and Final on!

    His movement is pure quality and he now has 4 goals in 3 matches and his influence has most certainly been a huge factor in Southampton’s attack since his arrival.

  31. YW says:

    Why didn’t De Gea lead with his hands for that? Bob Wilson would’ve.

  32. C says:

    Gabbiadini should now have 2 goals because his first goal was CLEARLY not offside but that has in no way shape or form deterred Southampton.

  33. C says:


    Who would have thought that De Gea makes mistakes…..

    Its a shame that the first goal was disallowed because it was CLEARLY onside

  34. C says:

    I mean Redmond was offside but he was at the backpost and in NO WAY was apart of the play as De Gea was at the front post and Gabbiadini was actually behind Smalling when the pass was made and simply reacted better.

  35. C says:

    Is it just me or does Keown seem to really be hurting for Arsenal and his comments are spoken like a supporter not a pundit:

    “I’m not sure they have got the ability.
    “You are where you are now with Arsenal and it’s been quite hollow for the last seven seasons in the Champions League.

    “That’s what hurts because it’s all about getting into the top four, that almost secures the manager’s future, but to then not do anything year on year in the Champions League, pay all that money as fans to go abroad, I was out there in Germany meeting people at the airport, it really leaves a bad taste in the mouth.

    “This is the most difficult period for Arsene Wenger at the club
    “Huge decisions need to be made and he’s defiantly said he’s going to manage next year. Will it be at Arsenal or not? And that is the major question.

    “The frustrating thing is Wenger knows how to do it, we’ve seen him do it many times.

    “But why can’t he crack it again? What is wrong? Why can’t he get the formula right?

    “That’s been the huge disappointment now for far too many years.”

  36. C says:

    Gabbiadini does it again!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 2-2 match on and what a strike that was!

    I really would love to see him in an Arsenal shirt leading our line, what a fucking striker: big, strong, quick, pace, clinical and works his socks off with a good futboling brain.

  37. C says:

    Lingard should be sent off for a 2nd cynical foul that should have been showna 2nd yellow and off he goes. Redmond is to honest of a player to have fallen over but if he falls down Lingard is off and Manure are down to 10 men.

    Go Southampton, go and win this!!!!!!!!!!

  38. C says:

    Mourinho is being tactically undressed by Puel so far in this match.

  39. C says:

    Manure players flopping about trying to get Southampton players to pick up yellow cards.

  40. C says:

    Southampton are ripping the Manure defense to pieces, they have to go and get a 3rd!

    Romeu almost does and De Gea is saved by the post!

  41. C says:

    Fro as brilliant as a player Pogba is, he really does switch off defensively especially on set pieces.

  42. C says:

    Mourinho is calling on Rooney to save the day…..

  43. C says:

    Ward-Prowess is certainly one that England should be building around for the future in midfield.

  44. C says:

    Yoshida really is a solid CB, not spectacular but knows his role and does it consistently time and time again.

  45. C says:

    Nope, Mourinho bringing on Rashford not Rooney.

  46. C says:

    No surprise but Southampton’s back 4 have been superb.

  47. C says:

    Gabbiadini coming off and Shane Long coming on; if there was a striker in the 80’+ when it comes to pure work rate coming on, Long is certainly not one as a CB you would want to see.

  48. Pistol Fish says:

    Honestly C
    I’ve never seen a reason for the Pogba hype.
    Not before, nor after he went to Man U

  49. C says:

    Inch perfect cross, nothing Southampton could have done there.

    There is still time, go Southampton, go get the equalizer..

  50. Pistol Fish says:

    So Jose wins a trophy on his Man U debut season.

  51. C says:

    Pistol Fish,

    I think more than anything with Pogba is that he really is a talented player but doesn’t always put in the effort you would think of a player of that talent. He really does have it all in his locker but the fees paid for him are a huge part of it.

  52. C says:

    Say what you want about Ibra but he has literally run his socks off for the team and scores goals and really is a match winning striker. He literally was on his knees gasping for air.

    Futbol is cruel and Southampton were unlucky with that goal that was wrongly called offside. Southampton and Puel were brilliant today and they deserve to hold their heads high, they were simply undone by Ibra.

  53. Pistol Fish says:

    Unfortunately putting in the effort and mentality are equally as important as having it all in your locker. The locker is not good if you can’t open it. Or if you can’t open it when it really counts.
    I may yet be wrong but I think Pogba is just a midfield version of Ballottelli.

  54. C says:

    Pistol Fish,

    Naw I wouldn’t go that far, I do think that part of his problem is that he simply doesn’t know what he is, is he that box-to-box player or is he an ACM. At Juve, he was nothing short of brilliant in that kind of semi-everything midfield role in that 352. When you watch him he has superb feet, a calm on the ball, athleticism and a brilliant range of passing but you always feel like he can do more in a Manure shirt (thank god he doesn’t). I would say he is more like the midfield version of Berbatov; the good thing for Pogba is that he is still so young being only 23.

  55. nicky says:

    I dare to disagree both with HenryB and C.
    Ever since the top echelon of football became Big Business, rather than sporting icons, the lure of money and how it can be obtained has surely become a universal be all and end all. Clubs attract class players by transfer fees and largesse which can only be obtained in two ways. Success on the field and a “sugar daddy ” owner. Both spell Money.
    The days of the Corinthians are unfortunately over.
    Insofar as Arsenal is concerned IF we are to really succeed in the CL, EPL, FA Cup and any other piece of silver, the availability of money (these days) is the vital precursor.
    We simply have to attract the right type of class player who will assist our success. And that means money as well as reputation.
    In my view Arsenal must, at the very least, qualify annually for the lucrative CL.

  56. Orson Kaert says:


    Not all top players are attracted solely by money, once they’ve had a few seasons in a top club in a top league they are financially secure. They then look for a team with which they can win the top prizes.

    Money is not lacking at Arsenal, what is lacking is the ability or will to compete for those top prizes.

  57. Pistol Fish says:

    I’m sure you’ve seen him in action more than I have so most likely you are correct.
    The times I’ve seen him play I’ve not been very impressed.
    That kind of transfer fee could have landed them a Reus, or a Lewandolski. Or a Zlatan. O wait, they got him for free?

  58. C says:

    Pistol Fish,

    I thino the biggest difference between him at Juve and him at Manure for me is his focus, at Juve it was demanded at all times by most importantly players like Buffon, Chellini, Bonucci, Pirlo and the rest; outside of Ibra he has nobody that can demand that of him including Mourinho.
    That fee they could have landed Reus(Bayern continue to say they offered that amount for Muller). Still can’t believe they got Ibra on a free, add him to our team and we walk the league but no way in hell would Arsene allow that big of a personality in hus lockerroom.

  59. nicky says:

    @O K,
    You miss the point. If you read Henry B’s 1.03, he said, to which I replied…. “I care naught for the financial aspect of where Arsenal finish”.
    In my pragmatic view (and sadly), in the operating bible of Big Business that is professional football, money and its usage now pervades all.
    Currently, we cannot compete with the Manchesters or Chelsea in transfer offers OR wages and it shows. 😉

  60. Bill says:

    I did not see the game but ManU winning was not surprising. Mourinho really does value the league cup. I think he won at least twice during his first run with Chelsea. The manager generally determines the teams culture and the players will follow his lead.

  61. Bill says:

    Orson @ 3:55

    I think Perez has started every league cup and FA cup game and he even started one of the CL games. He has started every low leverage game on the schedule so far. I think he clearly deserves a chance to move ahead of Iwobe in the pecking order for LW

  62. Dukey says:

    Is it only an Arsenal thing where the longer our players are out the better they become?

    Latest goon for the honour . Cazorla, who has been getting better by the week. he is now the holy lord knight in shining armour that if we would have had this season we would have won the world cup.

  63. Bill says:

    Perez is in his late 20″s and has only one season in his career where he scored in double figures. That is not the type of resume that you expect for a player to come into a big team and compete for one of the starting spots. I think his role was to play in the cup games and be ready in case of an injury emergency. In the past we have had enough injuries that we have needed to use a players in the bottom 1/5 of the squad and it shows how concerned Arsene was about this season that he would spend money and buy an experienced player to fill that squad spot. In years past he would have filled in the squad with someone like Akpom

  64. Bill says:


    Same sort of thing happened with Joel Campbell and Podolsky before them. The more we talked about them the better they got.

    Big team managers do not use the players lower in the squad pecking order if they are not forced by injury. Conte goes no deeper then 14 – 15 deep in his squad in the league games. Raineri did not even use that many players last year. Mourinho used the same team game after game when Chelsea won the league in 14/15 and during his first run with Chelsea. Fergie was the same way.

  65. The Arse in Namib (AITG) says:

    Can’t help feeling that our arms are tied. Too much incistence on one style of play.

  66. Bill says:

    IMO it was a mistake for Arsene to hand the LW job to Iwobe last summer. How many teams win league titles with a U20 player as one of their regular starting forwards, especially when that player has never been a scorer? It didn’t matter early in the season when Walcott and Alexis started out so well and the team was playing well. However, iwobe has not really had much positive influence in the last 3 months so it was long ago time to give someone else those minutes.

  67. andy1886 says:


    Two out of three maybe Nicky, but fact is that Chelsea’s net spend over the last five years is less than ours and our wage bill is within 10% of theirs too. And they are looking good for a second title in three years.

    Where we go wrong is paying middling players more than they are worth. Pay the stars the going rate by all means, I’m afraid the supporting cast will have to earn the right to join the top earners

  68. andy1886 says:

    For those who dismiss the League Cup at the expense of CL qualification. Like it or not if you look at United’s list of honours in a few years you’ll see an FA Cup win last year and a LC win this year. Look at our honours list and what you will not see is a ‘Top Four Trophy’ for either year or for the previous eighteen come to that.

    The money earned is only worth anything if it contributes to our long history of success. If not, in sporting terms it’s pointless. Nobody remembers who came second, or third and fourth either.

  69. nicky says:

    @ Andy 1886,
    You say that “no-one remembers who came second, third or fourth”.
    When it means qualifying for the lucrative CL, any of the four top positions means a lot in my book.
    In the last paragraph of your 10.48 yesterday, you make an important
    point about Arsenal paying middling players more than they are worth.
    No-one can argue with that. It’s one of the penalties for raging inflation in transfer fees and players wages.
    To make things worse, legends like Bergkamp, Vieira, Henry, Adams, Pires and Ljunberg are as rare as hens’ teeth. 😉

  70. andy1886 says:


    I understand, but unless the revenue is invested and leads to titles then what was the point? Sure we had more money but if the result is the same (no titles) then it’s just meaningless.

    Great players there, the difference is that we no longer have the scouting advantage that we used to have. Bergkamp was a no-brainer, Pires and Henry were known quantities but not stars, Freddie and Paddy were more or less unknowns and TA came through the youth system obviously. Where we are lacking is identifying those up and coming players and then developing them into superstars. We rarely buy them.

  71. nicky says:

    @Andy 1886,
    A couple of articles in today’s Gooner News sites will interest you.
    1. Arsenal’s highest paid player (Ozil) is on less than half the pay of Rooney.
    2. Arsenal still want to sign Griezemann but cannot match the current wages of the Argentinian.
    3. Players from abroad who come to the EPL don’t worry about the team they will play for, they worry about the wages.
    4. Aguero will join Arsenal from Man City this Summer although it is unlikely his present wages will be matched.
    See the pattern? 😉

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