Monday, August 29, 2011

Arsenal Through and Through

There are times when a club finishes the season on fire, when something wonderful happens and the entire squad jells to the point where team mates communicate with each other using telepathy, they know exactly where to pass the ball, they are in perfect harmony, then the season ends, summer break begins after that the new season starts, the same squad hits the field and they play like total and utter shit. Something happened over the summer and the squad and club have lost its dynamics. Sometimes the total opposite happen, the club finishes the season playing their worst football and starts the new season on fire with everyone fitter, fresher in sync and plays one step ahead of their opponents, something wonderful happened, I am not sure what, they matured, they grew stronger with determination and vision.  It is also possible for a squad to start the season well and by the time December comes around starts to lose ground and other times they start the season bad but end up in a fight for the title.

If you ask me who I would like to take over from Wenger, I cannot tell you, I do not know of another manager I would like to manage Arsenal FC but Arsene Wenger, I am use to the old Geezer and his crazy ways but the reaction of our supporters to the lack of progress is expected and understandable, we are being asked  to be patient once again, it’s been 6 years and still we are no closer to a squad we can depend on, a squad we have full confidence in.  In years gone pass we had no such worry, suporters and players alike was filled with confidence, bask in our own superiority as we roll over anything and anyone they throw in front of us, we were the media darling, our style was the best in all the lands, our passing games produced results, scoring some of the most beautiful goals in all of England and the world, “We Are The Arsenal..”.

These days we get excited if we can come away with a win or a draw against lesser clubs, clubs we never worry about in the pass, we are now so very nervous that it adds to our anxiety and frustration and I can totally understand the frustration, fear and disappointment of the fans. Once upon a time we were the club everyone wanted to play for, we could get any top of the line players our heart desire, they all wanted to be at the club, they all wanted to share in the Arsenal experience, now we are publicly dismissed by some of the world’s best players as not good enough, so I can understand the frustration of the fans. 

We watch each match hoping that we are witnessing history in the making, that this is the match when the club, team and squad will achieve enlightenment, the point where they start to believe as a team, they begin to understand each other more than they understand themselves, communicate using telepathy and outplay everyone, anywhere and anytime, a super team, warriors on the pitch and we want this for Arsene Wenger, we want to secure his legacy of being the greatest Manager the club have ever seen, but deep down we know that this set of player have not developed to that level. But I can understand the frustration of the fan, the confusion as they lose faith in the Wenger philosophy, some of us have trouble understand why it was necessary to transform the club over night, to get rid of all its seasoned, mature players who have led this club winning trophies after trophies, back to back titles, why was it necessary to trust the future of the club on players so young, skillful but void of experience, guts and determination. If the experiment had worked then transfer fees would not be the high over the top price it is today as everyone would use the Wenger experiment as a bench mark. 

 The perceived failure of the Wenger experiment proved to others that the way forward is to spend, spend and spend big, get the best of the best forget the concept of building from the ground up, everyone wants an instant squad, mercenaries for higher.  The problem with some of our young players is that they are not Arsenal enough, no guts, not commitment, they surrender too easy and cry about how they miss home and mummy, they do not understanding what it means to be an Arsenal player, Bergkamp, Henry, Pirès, Vieira and the English Back line did not just play for Arsenal, they went to war for Arsenal and we went to war with them week in week out, they made us proud. I hope our current squad will develop into true Arsenal players, warriors who dictate events on the pitch and see us back to winning ways but that will not happen until the powers that be make some fundamental changes to the squad and club, Arsenal FC in its current form lack vision and leadership, there is a disconnect between Players, managers, the board and the supporters and nothing will change until that is resolved.

Wenger promised us a very active transfer market but the only real transfer activity we had was transfer-out, as we lost Samir Nasri, Cesc Fabregas, Gaël Clichy among others. For the past couple seasons the fans have demanded tactical signings, we had identified where the squad was weakest and wanted specific signings to buffer those areas but it seems Wenger was more interested in signing yet another young cheap striker, who do not know what to do when he is one on one with a goal keeper much less a hot blond.  Our defense is horrible, I mean nonexistent, we have very poor cover for most areas, the squad is very shallow, no depth what so ever, unlike our main rivals Manchester United, City and Chelsea who can play almost anyone on the bench and still come away with a win, we struggle even when we are playing our first team against championship sides.  Arsenal bought Carl Jenkinson for around £1 million and he is totally and utterly worthless, we got exactly what we paid for, where did this penny pinching mentality come from, who decided to sacrifice winning titles and championship to save a million here and a million there. The club reported time and time again that Mr. Wenger does have money to enter the transfer market, not to mention our recent sales must have added to our war chest but still nothing.

 I cannot say I was surprise at the result of the match against United, I suspected like most Arsenal fans that this encounter would open the eyes of everyone to the fact that we are heading in the wrong direction. Some part of me wanted this trashing, I saw it as the only way for us to change the direction of the club, this policy that is clearly not working for us and have not worked for us for 5 years now. Why is it that we can see and identify the problem but the managers are blind to it? Wenger declared that the result was the way it is because we had players out thus indirectly saying that we have not invested enough into the club, Arsenal FC should not be suffering from this problem, we are an old experience club and should know better, should know that adequate cover is a must. Every club should invest in young talent but every club also need mature, experience players with guts and determination to lead the charge. I am also not confident about the players who are out, the dynamics of the squad is all wrong and unless Wenger realize and fix it, then be prepared to expect more of the same.

 A response against Shrewsbury in it self means nothing, we are looking for consistency and I am forced to live in the past because none of these current players with the exception of Wojciech Szczesny seems capable of creating a future deserving of our history or achievements.

This squad can win a match here and a match there but that is not what makes true Champions, Arsenal needs to be more consistent and until something changes with this squad I do not see consistency coming from them. Just look how they walk around the pitch after being scored against. For me the match against United was not so much about winning but a measure of character, to better understand who they are and how they deal with being 2 or 3 goals down, that is where maturity comes in. I wanted to see fight back, determination, guts true Arsenal spirit but instead I saw a team that gave up and wanted the Ref to blow the whistle before time. They looked like they wished football had mercy rules, like boxing, that Wenger would get up and throw in the white towel thus saving them from further punishment and humiliation. The supporters are frustrated and I can surly understand why because I am just as frustrated as they are, that does not mean that we do not love this club, it is because we love this club of ours, we are Arsenal supporters through and through.

We will continue to do what we have always done, support this club, cheer them along, those of us on this side of the world will continue to wake up at the most ungodly hours to support our club though thick and thin, win lose or draw, unlike some players we do not have a transfer market nor need one, we do not want to turn our backs on this club. We are Arsenal Supporters, Gooners through and through and nothing can change that, cause we all follow the Arsenal.

Link->> keep It Arsenal

Link->>Arsenal Till I Die!

**Update** August 31st 20011

The Transfer window is now close which saw Arsenal signing several players after their 8-2 defeat to United.  I cannot help feeling that this was a panic (but welcome) buy, a rush by the board to save face and prevent wrought of the fans. We should not have been in this position where we have make last minute desperate buys. Wenger had the entire summer to analyze players and make a proper decision but for some reason this was not done. We made some good signings, not great signings however much better than what we had… we finally have some experience players in the squad, now to see how they jell with our current players and how dangerous they are on the pitch.  I am particular worried about Vermaelen he seems to be injury prone and may make limited contribution if it continues so hopefully Per Mertesacker will fill in nicely coupled with the Brazilian Andre Santos. In any case this is an improvement with what we started the season with.

Carl Jenkinson
Joel Campbell
Andre Santos
Chu Young-Park
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain
Yossi Benayoun (Loan)
Mikel Arteta
Per Mertesacker


  1. Oh gosh yes, I of course agree with every word as a "die-hearted" Gooner myself...The Arsenal forever! I agree, we need that warrior spirit. And I agree about Jenkinson - he is like a square peg in a round hole, or at least he was yesterday. Maybe the thrashing will be worth it in the end - a severe wakeup call - but I don't think I can go through that pain and misery again. I was longing for the final whistle to blow! Having said all that... I will gladly get up at 4 am to watch an Arsenal game. The team is in my heart, nothing can change that. Up the Arsenal!!

  2. Thanks petchary, Lets hope the new signings see us back to winnings ways...