It’s not ‘honk your horn for Jesus’ but this morning’s media want us to ‘give Wenger a fanfare’. If only we had seven ram’s horns to bring the walls of his empire crashing down. Yeah, I’m getting biblical on your arsenal’s today.
Wenger previously claimed he wants to walk away without a fuss. That’s the likely outcome with the Heil claiming Joachim Löw is favourite to succeed. He’ll bring a Teutonic air to Arsenal where once the French were feted and all those talented German youngsters we are linked with, will immediately sign for us. Yah!
We’ll have plenty of space in the squad. We’re flogging Aaron Ramsey this summer and then selling him. Contracts are the issue once again. We’re playing hardball now our quota of huge salaries is filled leaving the Great British core, reduced to Ramsey and Wilshere, in danger of extinction.
Unless they reach agreement on new deals, the pair will leave the club this summer is the message. While both rejected the initial offerings, talks are ongoing with Wilshere’s agent while Ramsey’s will resume at the end of the season.
Wilshere will leave on a free transfer, leaving the new man in a pickle if Ramsey goes in the same window. Losing one homegrown player is bad enough but if that would mean five categorised as ‘homegrown’ have left the club in twelve months. Arsenal will be the byword for ‘home shopping’ in English football.
I say the ‘new man’ as if it is a done deal which we know isn’t the case. The value at which Stan considers his investment hurt when Wenger leaves. My guess is we aren’t there yet although penalty clauses in the new commercial deals will be painful to suffer. Then Stan will take notice of the club’s predicament.
I Did Not Put You Here to Suffer
Normally, football is the antidote to off-the-pitch distractions. When the manager is involved, that isn’t the case. A win will provide some relief from the gloom and with professional pride stung through the media portrayal of their team meeting, today must surely see a reaction?
You can’t be sure with 2018 Arsenal. Usually, when our form is this miserable, we’re crowned Calendar Year Champions. Not this time; we’re just crap. No away wins in the Premier League and three defeats in matches we expect to win. Great stuff.
The flaw in it all is that the football is joyless. Where there were verve and delight, there is now panic and self-inflicted discombobulation. Fearless became fearful; the spritely and impish spirit found bags of wet cement tied around their ankles.
It’s been so long that you forget we go into this match with just two wins in eight Premier League games and one win in seven on our travels. We are hopelessly out of form with no sign of it returning.
One-nil to the Arsenal, anyone?
After the decimation of the first half against City, I don’t know where Wenger goes. For the first time in around five years, he didn’t make a single substitution. The bench offered no escape route from the misery on the pitch or was he just protecting individuals from a wretched reception? The truth, my dear Mulder, is out there.
I don’t think we’ll see Danny Welbeck in the starting line-up although he needs to sharpen up for Milan. But Wenger’s options are limited. The back four will remain; Wenger’s dismissal of the five after Wembley was such that is cast to the mists of time. In its’ place, Elneny and Xhaka in front of the four with Wilshere’s ankle knack saving the Swiss’ bacon.
Get Out and Have a Good Time
After the second 3 – 0 defeat, Wenger spoke about how quickly confidence is lost. ‘Stairs and lifts’ are more intelligible than ‘seagulls and trawlers’ but it is a footballer’s “precious”. We’re bereft of any belief in ourselves and while we need a win, we equally need a performance which brings some self-belief back.
Whether we’ll get both today, I don’t know. We’re looking down the table rather than up at present, knowing a defeat today wreaks havoc on what little is left of our aspirations.
The XI to avoid that isn’t at the club so this one will take the field instead I should think:
Cech; Bellerin, Mustafi, Koscielny, Kolasinac; Elneny, Xhaka; Mkhitaryan, Ramsey, Özil; Aubameyang
Enjoy the match wherever you are watching it.