Bob Wilson Said, FA Cup Final and More

The only cost for the Europa League which Stan will take notice of is the refunds given to season ticket holders yesterday. I say given to them but mentioned in an email is more accurate; the club is refunding the money by cheque. Delivered by post…you’re way ahead of me.

it wasn’t the real story of the day although addressing the issue of ticket prices for next season’s Europa League this early is commendable. I didn’t see any prices mentioned yet but estimates were in the £20-30 range which seems fair enough.

No, the story wasn’t even KSE denying their shares were for sale. And so the dance begins. There is a price at which Stan will sell but the fly in the ointment is whether he can sell and enjoy the funds?

If, as is suspected, he has used Arsenal’s value to obtain borrowing for his LA Rams move,  is he tied into keeping his shares until their new stadium is built, which then becomes a more convenient asset for the banks to use as security?

If it is and he then sells his Arsenal shares, does he have to pay down the loans? That’s something he may not feel inclined to do. Too much exposure of his own funds and out of line with self-sufficiency he desires from his franchises.

The question is not as simple as our black and white painting of it. Murky grey fits better. It’s going to be an interesting few months on this issue and more intriguingly, to find who else is in the running to purchase the club.

It’s hard to think of anyone more repugnant than Usmanov but you know these billionaires and their egos; someone, somewhere, will have a damn good go at it.

Bob Wilson Told Me So

As per usual it’s Arsenal Football Club as a business rather than the business of Arsenal Football Club taking the headlines. Whatever the outcome of Stan and Ali’s situation, Ivan is sorted.

According to the Heil, he has a £5.5m fortune amassed from his time at the club. No-one tells us how they worked that out and I’m inclined to think it’s guesswork. Unless of course, Ivan wandered into Darth Dacre’s office shouting, “Look at my wad”.

At which point the Heil’s inimical Editor counters with a vision of all his wealth amassed through EU subsidies for his Scottish estate. The hand that feeds has been well and truly bitten off.

Bob Wilson waded into the discord surrounding the club yesterday and it’s hard to think it wasn’t ‘signed off’ by some of the board, at the very least. I like Bob and he was many people’s favourite for a ‘footballing man’ on the board for a while.

A lot of us grew up with him in the background, on the pitch and then on the telly with his measured tone suiting the BBC perfectly. The training as a PE teacher is put to good use in this playground spat; Wilson told them to talk through their issues:

“[Monday’s board meeting] should include the involvement of the major shareholder. That abuse was awful to hear. And [discuss] the possibilities offered by Alisher Usmanov, who like Abramovich loves his football team and is prepared to invest hugely in Arsenal Football Club.”

Let’s see if the implied threat of an after-school detention has the desired effect.

Yesterday’s Zeitgeist

 

There is an FA Cup final this weekend,  flying under the radar somewhat. In days of old, this was a big thing. Now, it isn’t. The word ‘league’ doesn’t appear in the competition name so the money men aren’t interested.

They’ve successfully wrecked its’ reputation in the process, a move the FA was utterly complicit in. Michel Platini had the idea of cup winners winning a place in the Champions League. A move, which if successful, made the Champions League all-powerful; the prize beyond prizes.

There was more of a sense of occasion for the day when I was younger. The coverage began mid-morning and a welter of personalities passed through Tarby’s lounge or joined in with ‘FA Cup Final It’s A Knockout’ or ‘FA Cup Final Mastermind’. Even the athletics, racing and wrestling, for one day only, had ‘FA Cup Final’ in the title.

The air of innocence of those times has been lost. Most of the guests are dead or serving time at Her Majesty’s Pleasure.

And you could buy the FA Cup Final programme in WH Smith’s in the week before the game. It was expensive then but nowhere near the rip-off it is now. If you see a pristine copy of a 1970s FA Cup final nowadays, it probably came from a provincial town newsagents rather than the game itself.

By now, all the papers would be issuing ‘FA Cup Final Specials’ and the back pages mingled the final in with the cricket coverage. The butterflies fluttered in your stomach as the weekend couldn’t come fast enough.

Now, we’re talking about which billionaire is morally acceptable as an owner. The time of innocence has died.

’til Tomorrow.

61 thoughts on “Bob Wilson Said, FA Cup Final and More

  1. Mo says:

    You took me back, its a knockout on the Saturday morning. Its a shame things move on in life, not me though, i cant wait, i love it, too much politics now, i never cared who owned the club or who managed it. In those days i was all about the players and the next game.

  2. lari03 says:

    I prefer to look forward to a time when we can confidently know what squad we will have going into the next season. Griezman going to United; Oxlade Chamberlain rumored to be off to Liverpool, Alexis torn between City and Munich, What are we getting? A board meeting….

  3. Wailesy says:

    I for one am getting pretty pumped up for the final. I don’t give us much hope and while I don’t like what the ramifications of winning may mean for Wenger and co Its a cup final and I want a trophy!

  4. Wavey says:

    I still love the FA Cup, even though its significance as a competition appears to be greatly diminished. Loving that its on during a bank holiday weekend, as I’ll get less hassle from the wife about spending all day watching football. I don’t think we have much of a chance, but its a one-off game so we could do it.

  5. Freddo says:

    Watching sport is becoming more like watching the stock market every day

  6. C says:

    Hearts, minds and prayers go out to the city of Manchester as well as all the families affected by the horrific bombing at the concert yesterday and the explosion at the shopping plaza this morning. Killing mostly children out to enjoy their lives at a concert, what a heartless gutless act of terror.

  7. C says:

    Glad the shopping plaza was re-opened.

  8. C says:

    Good stuff Yogi!

    Personally I still get up for the FA Cup Final and I can’t wait until Saturday at noon time here in the States to make final preparations to watch. The biggest problem is that we not only have two billionaires having a go but we have a manager who we all assume is coming back but have little if no true idea other than our thoughts.

  9. Finnish Hit says:

    I embarrassed myself by going to read the Heil article. (Tabloids have a huge role to play in people’s and culture’s degeneration. They are poison for the mind and heart.) Pretty normal golden parachute settlement for a position like his, so no complaints from me.

    This from the same article could give some food for thought: “Kroenke would have made an estimated profit of £576m had he accepted Usmanov’s bid”.

  10. C says:

    @Bill

    About the youth, there have been plenty of youth that I said wouldn’t make it, including most recently most of our defenders sans Maitland-NIles (who has played RB at the youth level). The problem with youth isn’t that they aren’t talented enough but their is a clear mental bridge between U21’s and first team futbol and we have seen some of the most talented youth not be able to make that mental jump. Its also what we see in the first team as well, a gap between being a raw but uber talented player like Ox and him becoming the player that his talent suggests. Probably the most excellent example of this is the difference between Ox and Sanchez. Sanchez at Udinese was so raw but quality and talent oozed from every single pour of his body (I went on quite a rant about us chasing him before he went to Barca) but the question was, “Can he make the mental jump and be the team player that would allow him to become the player many thought he could be?” Well he was able to do that in his final season at Udinese and his seasons at Barca. Ox hasn’t been able to bridge that gap and many a many talented youth haven’t been able to bridge that gap while others it took longer to do. There are players like Bellerin who has been able to make that leap (his poor run coincided with him being rushed back from injury) while we have seen others like Akpom struggle to take that next leap.

  11. Finnish Hit says:

    C,

    Like Wenger once said, South America still breeds mentally tough strikers. The English boys we have at Arsenal may be a bit too soft. Yes, they are. So where and why did Harry Kane pop up?

  12. Wavey says:

    C,

    I think some of the problem with bridging the gap is the level of specific coaching the young players get. Maybe at Udinese Sanchez was being given the degree of training required to take him from raw talent to top player, or maybe he was just that good that it was inevitable he would step up. For me, Ox is one of those players brimming with potential who needs someone to work with him to take him on a step. I don’t know if he is getting that coaching at Arsenal, but from the comments made by ex-Arsenal players it seems doubtful.

  13. C says:

    Finnish Hit,

    South Americans are rarely coddled and generally have to fight for everything. Harry Kane, well even a broken clock is right twice a day.

  14. HenryB says:

    Life experience can make people realise they must put their heads down and work hard, and that is what Kane has done.

    He was always ‘not quite good enough’ as a kid. From 1999 he was bandied about from Ridgeway Rovers to Arsenal, and then Ridgeway again, and then Watford, before the Spuds took a chance on him.

    The Spuds then sent him out on loan from 2009 to about 4 or 5 different lower league clubs, and again was not to brilliant, but on his return to the Spuds in 2014 he started to impress with his goals and the rest as they sat was the making of they.

    He had chance after chance and eventually made the best of it — others get paid a lot of money and think they have ‘made it’ — until they are shown the door, when they do not try hard enough.

    There’re a lot of really good South American kids, and when they get a chance, the best ones are ruthless in clinging on to it – the law of the fittest and the best still rules.

  15. HenryB says:

    Hmm, seems like I was having finger problems in my earlier comment — but I am sure the gist of it was clear. 🙂

  16. C says:

    HenryB,

    Don’t blame it on ‘fat-fingering” the keyboard for your poor typing 😉

  17. C says:

    If there is two players that I do want us to have a run at it would be Douglas Costa and Lucas Moura who both have somehow fallen down the pecking order at their respective clubs but both would be a major upgrade over any “winger” we have including Ox not named Sanchez.

  18. C says:

    One player I don’t want us to even be rumored to be in for is Ross Barkley who has posted a cryptic good-bye to Everton.

  19. Pete The Thirst says:

    Here’s a strange thing: I logged on the Arsenal website yesterday and it gave me access to the FA Cup final ticket site. It allowed me to look at available seats for the game. There are hundreds, possibly thousands, of seats that haven’t been sold yet, which I find amazing.

    Has the apathy spread so far that Arsenal won’t sell out their FA Cup ticket allocation?

  20. C says:

    Pete The Thirst,

    Yea I had seen a couple of reports that Arsenal are struggling to sell the tickets for the Final. I wonder if Gooners are either doing so in protest or either they simply don’t want to go because they don’t think we have a chance at beating Chelsea.

  21. C says:

    I see the Arsenal Ladies have made a brilliant striker signing in 20 year old Vivianne Miedema from Bayern were she scored 21 goals in 39 matches for club and another 34 in 42 matches for country.

  22. Bill says:

    Great post Yogi

    Usmanov is an unsavory character but Stan Kronke is not exactly a Boy Scout. I know the grass is always greener but I am confident that Usmanov would put more emphasis on the importance of the club winning big trophies on the pitch compared to the current status quo

  23. HenryB says:

    C:
    HenryB,

    Don’t blame it on ‘fat-fingering” the keyboard for your poor typing 😉

    C, Baby,

    How very dare you??? I never used the word ‘fat’ in my assumption of typing finger problems!!

    I am a very slim person in a 20 stone kinda way.

    Oh. OK, then – I might have slightly over-sized digits. 😀

    [And don’t think I have not noticed that you snuck in the Ox and Sanchez as wingers to be replaced by Douglas Costa and Lucas Moura — and not a mention of the invisible Theo.] 🙂

  24. Bill says:

    The first thing that needs to happen irregardless of the whomever owns the club is we need a new manager. The current manager has become so entrenched and his influence has become so overwhelming and the culture and mentality that he has developed would make it very difficult for any owner to rebuild the winning mentality that every big club needs to succeed.

  25. HenryB says:

    Bill,

    You know the saying, “give a dog a bad name, and hang him” – well I have no interest in Usmanov, but neither do I understand why he has gotten such a bad reputation, as a result of political shenanigans in Russia.

    Frankly no billionaire becomes ….. well ….. a billionaire by being choirboys, but I think the Arsenal board have been hiding behind Wenger and letting him take all the flak while they keep their heads down.

    I am not convinced that AW will sign a new contract — but if it was me I would put two fingers up and tell Kroenke and the board to go stuff themselves. And if Usmanov had, hypothetically, behaved in that way, I would say the same to hm too.

    Someone said recently that pre-Abramovich and the oil barons most fans could not care less who owned the club, or who was the current manager [they all come and go eventually] — attention was focused on the team, and supporting them in the hope of winning trophies, or at least beating Man Utd and the Spuds, at the very least.

    A time long gone, for most.

  26. Bill says:

    C

    I have no clue why the younger players have such a difficult time moving to the first team. Myself I think we greatly over rate their talent but the real reason is probably combination of both mental and physical However as long as they are not making as much of a positive impact as we need then the reasons why are irrelevant.

    IMO, the one thing we should have learned by now is that using them in our first team set up has not been helping them and IMO we have given far to many first team minutes and asked to much of U21 players over the years and we should be sending them on loan rather then using them in critical squad positions until we have a better idea of which ones might be able to help us. Harry Kane and Le Coq are perfect examples.

  27. C says:

    HenryB,

    Haha I guess over-sized digit could replace fat fingered!

    I wasn’t saying Lucas Moura or Douglas Costa as a replacement for Sanchez and Ox but having either of the aforementioned to add to Sanchez and Ox(should he remain as a winger) would give us quality depth. Theo, I have absolutely no idea what to do. He is our 2nd leading scorer and outside of when he was out during our shit period, he was scoring early in the season and having scored recently before being dropped. the funny thing is, Theo is actually our 2nd leading goal scorer this season with 19 goals on the season. I actually think he will be sold this summer but who the hell really knows

  28. Bill says:

    No matter how you slice it one of the reasons we have not bought another goal scoring forward for the last 5 years is we want to believe that this is the year Ox will finally come good and Arsene wanted to make sure there were minutes for Ox.

    A lot of us were complaining about Giroud this season and how he impacted the minutes Perez got but Giroud gave us 12 league goals in very limited minutes and was our second leading scorer. It’s unlikely anyone else could have come close to 12 league goals in somewhere around 1000 minutes. We would have not come close to 75 points without those goals. The more important reason why Perez did not play is we handed a forward spot to Alex Iwobe last summer and gave him 2000 league minutes this season. The way the season played out for Iwobe was predictable and he should have been sent on loan and we should have bought another scorer last summer or given Perez more chances.

  29. C says:

    Bill,

    I don’t think its an overrating as much as it is lack of ability to take that next step for various reasons: mentally, physically, or lack of coaching.

    I don’t think you can say that we have used to many in key positions especially if you look at some of the best clubs in the world who have brought through talented youth or have used them but I think the combination of good not great players that can elevate the younger players plays a part. For instance, Madrid have used a number of talented young players like Lucas Vazquez (32 appearances), Kovacic, Asensio but have them equally as important but elevated by top players. For instance, Iwobi was really good for us early and when he struggled, instead of say playing Perez because we know what he brings and then helping Iwobi through his first full season, ARsene let him try and push through. There is a delicate balance and Arsene really since Cesc, Mozart and that lot has been really shit at doing it.

  30. Bill says:

    C

    I have to admit that I cringe when I hear people talk about using the Europa league as a way to develop youth and give them more minutes. We have been the pioneers in using cup competitions to blood youth and done it more then any team in the world and it has not helped the young players and its been a big part of the reason that the importance of those cup competitions has been devalued.

  31. Bill says:

    C

    No matter how you slice it giving all of those minutes to iwobe instead of buying someone better was a mistake. Letting him play until he runs out of steam is a poor thought process and poor use of those minutes.

  32. HenryB says:

    C,

    I am not sure that Theo will be sold, because you are right he is our next best goal scorer — imagine what he could be if he tried just a little harder.

    In many important games he goes missing — and yet — he could be so much better with more application. As a young player before his injuries he was fantastic.

  33. Limestonegunner says:

    On the Arsenal dot com the FA cup final is listed as sold out. Perhaps this was updated today and they have filled the full allocation. But a week before and tickets available is an indication of pretty low enthusiasm.

    It’s the 3rd final in 4 years and of course we aren’t favoured. If we play as we have been despite the good results and continue to give up the massive number of good chances we have been even with the new formation and during this good run against pretty poor and unmotivated sides, we will be in big trouble against Chelsea and their more clinical attackers. Add our defensive injuries and suspensions and we have a major challenge ahead. But in a one off game, perhaps we can somehow manage a cohesive and defensively strong performance. Ramsey likes Wembley finals and hopefully Alexis can create some magic on his gammy hamstring. But it is clear that excitement for this is not what it was in 2014 and 2015.

  34. C says:

    Bill,

    There is a difference between using young players and rotation in the early parts of the Europa League and using them in the later stages. There is nothing wrong with using players like Adelaide and Maitland-Niles in the early rounds and group stages because generally they would be playing in a weaker side on loan to those clubs in those countries. I have nothing wrong with playing them and mixing them with senior players.

    I agree, using Iwobi through his bad run instead of giving mins to to say Perez and helping Iwobi through his bad run of form was a terrible thought process.

  35. C says:

    HenryB,

    I’m honestly not sure what will happen because we have no clue about the managerial situation or the transfer sagas that are set to come. I think Theo if pushed could certainly offer us more and yes he does goes missing in big matches but we have also seen him do absolutely nothing and then once chance he scores.

    I guess that’s the thing, a manager that will push him to apply himself more and even if he only whips in a cross or takes his chance he could help because his skillset consists of: pace, movement, finishing and has the ability to whip in a cross. His problem is and has always been application more than anything.

  36. Bill says:

    The results started to go downhill in early November but we kept iwobe in the starting line up until Jan/feb

  37. Limestonegunner says:

    We need to win the Europa league. And in group games especially against weaker opponents, I think we can get to the knockout rounds using some younger players and under-utilized squad players in around 3 of those matches, especially at home. That shouldn’t be controversial or be considered devaluing the competition. A line up like the following should be a reasonably strong team against some of the weak group teams:

    WS
    Chambers, Mertesacker, Holding
    Ox/Bellerin/new young WB, 2 of Coquelin/Wilshere/Elneny, Gibbs/Kolanisac
    Iwobi, Perez, Welbeck

    On the bench: Rene-Adelaide, Maitland-Niles, Gabriel, etc… Though these guys could also start. We have plenty of fringe squad players and young players who could use games to be ready for injuries and so on and keep starting 11-14 fresh. If you look at the Europa League groups there are one or 2 teams who are at a very low standard.

  38. Wavey says:

    C,

    Not sure if Theo has already missed his chance, or not. I don’t think he’ll improve much more under Wenger, but with a decent coach on his case he could add that little bit more to his game.

    Bill,

    I’m of the opinion that a better striker than Giroud would have scored at least to his rate, as on many occasions he is static. He has been intelligent enough to be in the right place for a few of his goals and I will credit him with that, but you expect a striker to make those runs to get on the end of the ball and Giroud should be making a lot more of them. Defoe would have scored at least to Giroud’s level given the same chances in an Arsenal team.

  39. Ras says:

    C,

    Good evening all. You are absolutely spot on there with your observation of AW and his use of Iwobi.

    The Manager failed to protect him during his run of bad form. He disappeared without a trace.

    The Perez situation don’t ask cest un mystere.

    I noted the other day how AW looked absolutely broken at The Press conference on Sunday after the match.

    He knew along that his own situation was affecting the Team . His admission of this to the Press was in my opinion to the Board.

    Why did he earlier in the year say he would give a decision on his future in March, only then to deflect questions after no announcement had been made.

    I of course have no personal knowledge of the machinations of AFC but there is obvious discord between AW and the Club

  40. Bill says:

    Wavey

    The problem is that we don’t have a better striker or goal scorer then Giroud (not named Alexis) on our roster. That is what I ha be been complaining about for 4 years. No one on our squad could have scored 12 goals in the limited minutes that Giroud had.
    Iwobe had an adrenaline fueled good start but predictably his influence startedto to fade by ealy to mid October. hOwever was plugged into a high leverage squad spot at the start of the season and was a starter until February

  41. andy1886 says:

    So Big Sam has left Palace. Normally they get sacked if they fail to keep a club up, you’d think that they would want to keep him. Looks like a disagreement about funds for signings. Fancy that, a manager walking if he doesn’t get financial backing. Parish would love Wenger, he’d hand the money back.

  42. C says:

    Wavey,

    Thats exactly what we’re talking about. Arsene has taken him like Arsenal as far as he can take them. You see glimpses from Theo of the ability to dribble its just WILDLY INCONSISTENT and like so many the application isn’t always there. I could see a number of managers pushing him that bit extra and adding to what he already has.

  43. Bill says:

    Limestone

    Over the years we have kept all of our most promising youth players in the squad instead of on loan. How much has that helped wilshere ox diaby denilson wojo gibbs etc etc etc. We don’t have a single impact player since fabregs and like iwobe those players have filled valuable squad spots while we waited for them to develop

  44. C says:

    Ras,

    His failure to protect Iwobi and not use Perez or Elneny for that matter is nothing short of baffling and borderline neglect especially when others weren’t giving fuck all but continued to get trotted out.

    I agree but I think the disconnect between the Board and Arsene is self inflicted and on top of that I think its the dictatorship style that they have allowed that is the root of it all.

    O well, the aftermath of the FA Final will be quite telling.

  45. Bill says:

    Ras

    How can you expect to compete for big trophies if you have a player that you have to protect in a high leverage squad spot? That makes no sense

  46. Bill says:

    It’s lunacy to use one of your starting 11 squad spots as a player development slot with the idea that you will protect him if he starts to lose form

  47. Limestonegunner says:

    Bill,

    I think it will be difficult to offload a lot of these players and turnover would be huge to replace so many even if we could. Why not play Iwobi and his ilk in early group stages of Europa? If they need more game time they can go on loan in January.

  48. Bill says:

    I am not saying any of what happened this year was Iwobe’s fault. All the blame falls on Arsene for his overly optimistic expectations of what Iwobe was capable of giving the squad. Any player who is pencilled into the starting 11 at the beginning of the season has to be part of group that gives you the best chance to win a big trophy. If they are going to be in a high leverage position then you can’t use the excuse that they are still young when it does not work out.

  49. Bill says:

    Limestone

    Send Iwobe and Jeff on loan and let them play everyday. May be one willl turn out to be the next Harry Kane but it does not help them sitting at the back end of the squad

    Predicting which players will make it is almost impossible. In 2010 no one in their right mind would have predicted that Harry Kane would be the best striker in England and Benik Adobe and JET and Nic Bendtner would be no where. Letting Kane and Le Coq bump around on loan for all those years allowed them to develop at their own pace and it gives them the best chance to make it someday. Keeping players like Jeff around the first team just so we can use them in low leverage games has not helped those players to develop into the impact players we need.

  50. Bill says:

    Fill the back end of the squad with Yossi Benayoun types and let the youth have a chance to play everyday on loan.

  51. Wavey says:

    Bill,

    Sorry, just re-read what you typed. You meant that no other player within the squad (barring Alexis) would have scored that many goals over that period of time. Thought you were suggesting that Giroud had done a good job given his limited minutes. Agreed that he has been the most productive of what is available even though he is static and slow to react most of the time. Welbeck gives us more energy up front and tends to cause more problems for defenders, but he has never reliably turned that into goals.

  52. Bill says:

    Joel Campbell can come back to be a cup team player. If Cazorla can’t play regularly he can fill the Rosicky role

  53. Wavey says:

    C,

    And that’s why it won’t change for Theo at Arsenal. Wenger isn’t going anywhere, so Walcott will not develop further and, for the player, is probably better off moving on.

    Could do with finding a striker or winger of around 30 who would have been able to hit the ground running because he was already comfortable in his game. Maybe the one thing Wenger tried to do right was to sign Vardy. The options now are to break the bank in the summer and try to get a world class player in who has the quality to be able to adapt, or to bring in an experienced player who knows his job. Any development players will stall at Arsenal because of the lack of coaching. I agree with Bill that players like Iwobi and Jeff need to go out on loan to finish their education. I don’t see them learning too much at Arsenal and throwing them in at the deep end with the hope that they will swim rather than sink has proved to be an abject failure.

  54. Limestonegunner says:

    Bill,

    Many times loans haven’t worked out so well either and don’t always get games. A player like Iwobi next Fall could get quite a few games for us in an appropriate environment to develop because of the league cup and Europa league group games as well as playing some in the league. I supported a loan for him this season and have never counseled relying on a young player in his first or second season in the first team as a starter or member of the first 14-15. However, next season we cannot buy 10 players to replace all the departures your envision going out on loan and those who may force a transfer or need to be pared. If we keep our best players and are in a position only to add, the new I would be happy to send Iwobi on loan. We are faced with a unique situation with an extra number of games against weaker opposition in the fall and potentially huge turnover in the team.

    Alexis and Ozil could easily force a move or the club could want to cash in. Plus, I believe that the following players are either in their last season 2017-18 or are out of contract this summer: Santi, Ramsey, Mertesacker, Wilshere, Debuchy, Jenkinson, Gibbs, Monreal, Walcott–there might be some others. Giroud may agitate for a move as well. So all things considered, Iwobi did pretty well and it might not be the best thing to send him on loan depending on what happens.

  55. Bill says:

    Limestone.

    Fair enough. I don’t have a big problem with keeping players around for cup games although I think history argues that it’s not the best way to develop players. There are risks to loans but I think it’s a better option then keeping someone around at the back end of the squad. I do have a real problem with giving a high leverage first team squad spot to someone like iwobe.

  56. Bill says:

    If Alexis leaves then Giroud and Walcott are the only current players on the squad who would be legitimate threats to score in double figures in league goals.

  57. Arsetralian says:

    Mo,

    Exactly Mo

    Why are we getting so wound up about which oligarch owns the club

    Just support the team, argue the toss about players and performances instead of pretending we have any influence on PLC matters

  58. andy1886 says:

    Arsetralian,

    That’s a bit defeatist – not what I’d expect from an Aussie!

    Of course we can do something. Stop attending matches, stop buying merchandise, make visible and audible protests, write on blogs, to newspapers, vote in polls. All of these things impact the only thing that Stan is interested in – the bottom line, either directly or by making ‘the brand’ toxic to sponsors.

    Meekly accepting the status quo has never changed anything so unless you are happy with mediocrity why wouldn’t you protest?

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