Wenger is here to stay: Top-Four finish or not

I have started to notice a growing number of fans – although still a minority – hoping that Arsenal fail miserably this season, so the BoD will have to change their policy and Wenger will get the sack.

Now, how any self-confessed supporter of our club could want it to fail is beyond me. The theory that failing to qualify in the top-four would get the BoD to invest heavily and also sack Arsene, is a short-sighted one.

I have no doubt that the BoD have been expecting a non top-four finish, and therefore no CL qualification, for the last few years at least. I have also no doubt that whatever you think of Kroenke – and let me state categorically I am not his biggest fan – he is in it for the long-term, and plans accordingly.

Some fellow supporters are still reading the final chapter of the last book of the Wenger-era and have failed to notice that the club and Arsene have moved on. This new book was started about a month ago when Arsenal signed up the Brit-pack; and with Theo’s subsequent signing of a new contract, Arsenal have well and truly started the Wenger-Brit-Ball era.

It is great news that we signed up six British talents and the club wanting to build a new team on and with them. It shows a long-term vision of how to combat the oil-money and build something truly special. It is absolute key to keep them together and let them grow and develop together, and they also need the best possible education and support.

Who else than Arsene himself is going to oversee this new project? This is probably going to be his last project and it should take between three and seven years to make it come to full fruition. Don’t be surprised if Arsene is to remain at Arsenal till 2020 or longer.

You might be disillusioned about Arsenal’s failure of not winning anything in the last seven years; and you might feel the club/Arsene should have done better with the available resources. And you might have a point, but I have no doubt that the BoD look at it differently and that they see Arsene Wenger as one of their major strengths in terms of moving things forward.

Arsene has been given the go ahead for Wenger-Brit-Ball and the club have invested in it by signing up our British talents and by paying Walcott a reported £100k per week.

There is very little doubt in my mind that part of their long-term plans is keeping hold of Arsene and giving him the time to develop a super-team again, whether Arsenal finish in the top-four or not (which they will btw).

Written by: Total Arsenal.

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79 Responses to Wenger is here to stay: Top-Four finish or not

  1. Red Arse says:

    Good Moaning again, TA, 🙂

    Very well said about the unbelievable ‘fans’ calling down gotterdammerung on us just to get ‘rid’ of Arsene.

  2. Stonroy says:

    Yeah but how are they going to do it when there are 20000 empty seats and a revolt by the fans at the prices we pay vs the quality of football on the pitch? Can you honestly say that Ramsey is the answer? Theo is our striker? We sold our last world class player last year (JW is not world class just yet) and finally the support home and away are getting extremely restless and it’s only going to get worse. Away support @ Chelsea were singing “spend some fucking money”… And there is no more hard core gooner than away support. You can feel something coming, this IS going to blow up and how will Wenger react when it does? Will he want to leave? Trust me there will have to be some major changes as too many of us have had enough and we don’t see a trophy anywhere in sight.

  3. Red Arse says:

    Hi Stonroy,

    It is difficult at the moment. The away supporters are fantastic and have my admiration.

    What you are saying does resonate with many fans, and there is no easy answer.

    When you say this is going to blow — what did you mean exactly?
    What can fans do except stay away – which is very hard for supporters to do, or complain, and that has little impact?

  4. Stonroy says:

    R.A it’s going to blow up in the same way it happened with Eboue except towards AW. There’s already fights breaking out between supporters and tensions are running high. I think the board need to come clean, where are we going as a club? What happened since 06, did we have to sell players in order to stay afloat? We’ll except that if that is the case however the way the board has treated us as cash cows with no respect has been absolutely disgusting. Now Wenger said the money is in so it’s time to spend with no more excuses.
    One last thing. I have been thinking back to the last manager that gradually got worse and worse and eventually came back and won the league… I can’t think of any. I honestly think it’s gone too far downhill for Wenger. He’ll have to leave for his own sanity and for ours.

  5. Davido says:

    The problem at the moment is the hollow promises and continual ‘politician-like’ spin that comes form Wenger. I can catergorically state that at the end of August, in an interview, he claimed that any signings they could not be done then would be done in January. This, of course, contradicted anything that he had said before on January signings: “difficult to find right players, not a good time to make signings, etc, etc..” So, why say we will sign players in January. One day we need players, the next day we don’t. The team has NOT evolved tactically or technically over the last three years. What really irks the supporters, as I said before, is his spin. “Only want special players at the club”…..Fair enough, so you’re telling me that Fellaini is just plain average, right? The fans are frustrated and it shows, but we have every right to be. As a team, we have gone backwards; the expectation to win matches is minimal; the defending is downright shocking and the players’ commitment questionable in many matches. It didn’t have to be like this but I feel he has lost the ‘faith’ of many fans – it’s a real shame, a real shamw.

  6. oz gunner says:

    Well said TA. I cannot fathom supporters who want Arsenal to lose so Arsene can be fired. It’s becoming a regular thing to say by some and quite frankly i think it’s a joke!

    Nothing would make me happier than to see Arsene turn it around, win a few trophies and stay on until 2020.

    I’m a stubborn sod you Never wants this team to lose, I’m not going anywhere! Arsene is the same. Do people honestly think he doesn’t spend countless hours thinking about how to fix the team? My bet is he’s trying his darnedest to bottle our second half performances of late and turn it into a game long showing. Do that and we can turn it all around!

  7. Red Arse says:

    Of course you are right, Oz.

    On the other hand it is understandable that fans want to come on and vent their frustrations, but those who want us to lose to prove a point have gone too far.

    For myself, what I regret is that we no longer play the beautiful football we were famous for. I suppose that too is an indication of the lower quality players we now have on our books.

    Play lovely football, allow us to enjoy that again, and the rest will fall into place naturally.

    My other regret is that AW keeps saying things that get fans riled up, like: ‘It is difficult to find players better than those we already have’, or ‘it is not ideal to try and buy players in January’, having said he was going to be active in the market.

    “Say nothing, Arsene”, would be my advice!

  8. TotalArsenal says:

    Stonroy, thanks for your passionate and well-expressed opinions. 🙂

    I doubt there will ever be a sustained period of supporters not turning up the Emirates, let alone 20,000 or more. There might be the odd game, but as soon as Arsenal start winning again the fans will return.

    I agree that the BoD/Wenger should get their wallet out, but the TW is not over yet. I am also hoping they are not going to buy just anyone in the end just to appease the fans. We need quality, because the squad is big enough.

    All agreed that the BoD should communicate their strategy going forward better. The club need an Arsenal legend/football man to liaise between the BoD and the fans, and maybe it is time for Gazidis to make way or move into a different role.

  9. TotalArsenal says:

    Morning RA, OZ and other fine fellow Gooners. 🙂

  10. sleepinggiant says:

    I am sorry but I don’t see the sense of what you are saying.

    All of the British players you mentioned were already on the books. They are no more so now, nor are they more central to the first team just because they have signed new contracts.

    I take your point that the team/squad now has an English core. It has had….for 18 months and look where that has taken us so far! This is not new, not a new master plan, not an alternative way to reach the summit (simple point – British Players are not generally better than the alternatives (and that is a euphism for the truth), and dont let any deusional fool tell you otherwise, loyaly will depend entirely on whether the club arrives in teh 21st century and pays its players the going rate, not on their passports). If Arsenes idea of a new plan is to sign otherwise average players on big contracts just because of their nationality, it is just as insane as his lamentable ‘they should all get roughly the same wage’ delusion. And again, look where that has landed us.

    The only possible ‘new direction’ we can see form the past few weeks is the fact that they have decided to break the laughable pay structure for Walcott. Continuing in this vein should allow the likes of Cavani to arrive, without the fans of other clubs (and completely treacherously, some of our own fans) either laughing at us or thinking it is somehow a bad idea that the money the fans pay into the club should be paid to world class stars (not a clique of complacent never-wases and never will be like the majority of the current squad).

    We are Arsenal. Top club in London. Time we stopped behaving like the likes of Charlton, Chelsea and Fulham. The way to achieve that is not to spin the fans into thinking their is something either fresh, revolutionary or, of itself, laudable in signing British playres. The way to do it is to start buying top players, and end this self imposed nightmare of equal pay for the equally mediocre.

  11. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi Davido 🙂

    I don’t like any of the spin either. But then we all listen to every word he says and try to interpret what it could mean and so does the press. Negotiating about players, especially in a highly competitive market, is not easy and the club can easily get it wrong.

    I agree with Red Arse comment earlier that he should just not say anything until the TW is over.

    We are currently paying the price for letting our key players leave in quick succession over the last three years. Hopefully this has come to an end now and Arsene is able to build a new team that will stay together for many years to come. Once the fans can see that there is future in the team and the BoD communicate its short, mid and long-term vision properly to the fans, we can all get behind the team again.

  12. oz gunner says:

    @ RA

    of course, they are my biggest concerns also. I believe him everytime.
    Most of all I want pressing, desire, and the passing game in all it’s glory!

  13. Red Arse says:

    Ooops, TA, I still sometimes think of you on AA, and I posted my comment to you on there, so I have re-posted it here, as well!! 😀

    TA,

    You say we have enough depth in the squad and on the face of it, I would have to agree with you.

    However, when you see we still have many youngsters such as Anneke, Afobe, Campbell, Myaichi, out on loan, and myriads of other senior players like Bendtner, Park, Denilson, Chamakh and Djourou also out on loan, and all of the senior players unwanted, it is quite sobering.

    In addition, we have other unwanted players on our books like Fabianski, Arshavin, Santos and Squillaci, all of them bought to ‘improve’ the squad, it is amazing how poor our recruitment policy was and perhaps still is.

    That is 9 players unwanted and there may be others!!

    No more buys like that, please, Arsene.

  14. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi sleepinggiant 🙂

    I might not disagree with all you say, but I always appreciate the passion and refreshing thought that goes into your comments.

    Arsene will never just go for Brits for the sake of it; in fact, he has been accused of the opposite many a time in the past. He is going for stability and a number of players who can and will identify themselves with the club. That is important and of course if and when they become successful they could still be tempted away by big(ger) money. Let’s hope the club will have revised their pay-structure in such a way that we can keep our top-quality players in the future.

    The team did not have a British core for the last 18 months at all. There might have been Brits on the books, but many of them are only now coming through. It is right to build the team around Jenkinson, Gibbs, Ox, Wilshere and Theo – I wish I could add Aaron, but it now looks like he is not going to make it. But of course that is not all: Szczesny, Vermaelen, Koz, Santi, Pod, Giroud, Coquelin, Arteta and one or two others are just as important for building a super-team again. We also need to add more quality, and I would be as disappointed as you if we were not to add two quality players in the next seven months.

  15. provincial gooner says:

    one man will be responsible for the price ot tickets which excludes many arsenal fans from even considering trying to go to a match, having worked for him at carpetright, i know pricing policy will come from harris,made a lord by the tories for acqusition of wealth he knows how to ream every last penny from your pockets. sack the board who run this club for their own financial benefit, who is that twat krankie?arsenal need dein back asap, and they should have sacked wenger and hired pep when the oppertunity was there (bit like the buying policy for players) they always miss the boat and when players prefer to go to qpr you know you are in big trouble

  16. TotalArsenal says:

    RA, that is exactly my point: no more squad players; unless it is an experienced goalkeeper.

  17. sleepinggiant says:

    Total Arsenal,

    I was making the point that these players have been in the squad for 18mths, so, it this is a purpose ploy, it seems certain it is one which has been hatched quite some tome ago.

    My fear is that this will somehow be exaggerated out of all proportion and spun as a great new plan, allowing the club once again to bleat ‘wait and see while our great plan reaches fruition’ while we continue to underachieve. Don’t get me wrong, I am all for retaining the services of these players (whisper it softly, even Ramsey,though I am increasingly in the camp that he should be loaded for 6mths).

    To me this is ont a plan, just a very minor part of a sensible housekeeping exercise. Keep the players you think are good (something we havent been great at!!). Just as long as the club don’t point to this and say “see what we are doing? We might be garbage on the field, but we are doing the right thing by signing up English players”. We have heard this kind of smokescreen before. To refresh the memory, it used to be ‘but we have a lovely ground’ or ‘but we play good football’, or ‘we give youth a chance’ or ‘we balance books’.

    The club is an excuse factory and refuses to take accountability and admit that they have let on-pitch standards slip far below what our great club should expect. They excuse this with a snake oil salesman smile, and pointing out ‘achievements’ which are, in the final analysis, less than meaningless. All we want is a team worthy of the glories of Arsenals past. By all means we can fail to do that, but this regime tries to tell us that their failures are somehow praiseworthy/

    Your blog has become essential reading for any of the more optimistic Arsenal fans (it is not patronising insulting rubbish like one pro-regime blog I could mention). I have developed a reputation for being pessimistic about the club, but I really want to be cheerful about the clubs prospects (honest guv!!) and your blog does help because it is always sensible and balanced. I always enjoy what your write, whether I agree with all of it or not. Keep it up, makes a working day go a bit quicker!!

  18. TotalArsenal says:

    SleepingG,

    Thanks for the compliment! 🙂

    There is definitely a marketing-ploy element with regards to the announcement of singing all five Brits (six now): fully agreed. And yes it could be used as an excuse for further underachievements.

    I have great respect for Arsene as a manager and a human being and I am inclined to support and defend him. But I am not blind to his failings and I am not in the camp of keep Arsene at all cost. A change could potentially be good for us; but it could also mean a slip into never-never land, where we would keep the Spuds and Dippers company, among others. Sometimes, it is worth taking the risk though, but there are no guarantees of success with any of the names thrown around. How many managers have been signed, tried and vomitted out by the likes of Spuds, Chavs, and Dippers over the last five years alone?

    Today’s post aims to highlight what I think is likely to happen if Arsenal were to finish outside the top-four, and what the signing of all those Brits is likely to mean. I looked at it from a BoD perspective and can only come to the conclusion that their strategy is based on the following views:
    1) We are not too unhappy about the past given the circumstances;
    2) But we need to move on now and build on our strength;
    3) We want to make an annual profit and secure our interests going forward;
    4) Self-sustainability remains a must but more money will become available now;
    5) Let’s build something that will increase the value of the club and hopefully bring in silverware (which of course further increases the value of the club);
    6) Arsene wants to stay, and is our best bet given the above, and should be allowed to build a team again (he stayed loyal to us and we need to stay loyal to him now);
    7) Let’s give him the freedom, some money for buying players, and some guarantees of keeping our key players from now on, if he so wishes.
    8) We can take a non-top four hit for one year, but are pretty sure he will get us back into the CL again the year afer.
    9) If not, we will go for another manager in 2014/15.

    Of course, I don’t know what exactly they are thinking or saying but the above would make sense to me.

    A lot of fans are unhappy though, and that is where the BoD need to do a lot more work: with honesty and transperancy, and a with a positive vision and some guarantees to the fans.

  19. richie59er says:

    @TA talk talk = cheap; cheap isn’t always good unfortunately 🙂 Arsene please take note 😀 especially with the window closing.

  20. richie59er says:

    @TA In regards to you article I don’t think the problem is AW or his spin. I think it’s the over expectation of our fans especially those young fans who’ve only ever known success. I don’t think enough thought goes into their speach period! They spin without even realising their spining, because they carry on as if we, with our meagre resources compared to Manu’er, Chav’s, and Oily Citeh we have a right to win. Since the prem started the team with the most resources won the most, then Mr Walker bought the league for Blackburn Rovers. Then Aromovich bought it for the Chav’s and now the Eastland Shiek has bought it for Citeh. Please can we have some realism, money talks, we don’t have a sugar daddy, and our owner won’t invest his millions in the club, those are the facts! Under those circumstances faced with the financial dopping stacked against us Arsene Wenger has achieved miracles in keeping us top 4 year after year. Of course the BoD can see that (as sure as eggs is eggs) so should everyone else be able to see it. If we fail one year in 16 I’m sorry but that is a pretty high rate of success. It’s at a level that those of us who been around since the 60’s and before have never expirenced. Check the history books it’s the longest period of success we’ve ever had. Wenger can’t win with the glory chasers; he only buys ever foreigners, is he only buying Brits to pull the wool over our eye’s? It’s ridiculous!
    They accuse him of spining if he gives it to them straight and over spining if he doesn’t.
    One think is sure the BoD won’t out Arsene if this is his first year on non CL qualification.

  21. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi Richie, fine comment and mostly agreed with the content.

    For me the main reason we are not now winning silverware is the successive departures of too many good players. Having said that, there is fair criticism out there about Arsene’s player purchases in recent years.

  22. Yeah TA I also agree that although Arsene has bought some absolute unknown pigs ears and turned them into silk purses, we have had some panic buys that stayed pigs ears, often going rancid on us. The example of Squilla springs to mind, however I think that some people are forgetting the circumstances of why Arsenal and Arsene panic bought the French capped defender. Gallas kept us waiting letting everyone think he was holding out (probably at the Spuds request) for a pay rise, he refused to sign a new contract extension (coz the Spuds had offered him a 3 year as aposed to our one year) and Sol who’d returned and been fantastic was also offered another extension and was expected to continue playing for us cried off at the 11th hour because he was marrying a Geordie Lass and was moving to the North East. All this happened in the pen ultimate day of the TW. So Arsene grabbed the first available International. Yes with hindsight it was a mistake but we were desparate for cover.

  23. The Gooner says:

    Hi TA,

    The positivity in your articles always brings a smile to me in the mornings! I agree with everything you say, and I also can’t quite understand how fans could ever want Arsenal to lose. It’s one thing to have the expectation that we’ll likely lose against teams like the Mancs, but I could never wish for my team to lose no matter how hard I try.

    In regards to the several comments about “spending big”, I’d prefer AW to stay course and not overspend like Chel$ea and Man $hitty. Their philosophy to the TW is unsustainable and I have zero respect in anything they do or accomplish. The combination of buying to overcome the deficiency in growing your talents and spending more to conceal your past mistakes in the TW humours me. It’s true that I want to see Arsenal recruit more players, but I don’t want AW to just splash out absurd amounts of cash to just please disgruntled fans. Despite having funds available, there’s also a responsibility to wisely spend the money and not be left with under performing/unused players like Arshavin, Chamakh, Bendtner, Squillaci, Santos etc.

    Tactics have never been a strength of AW. In the past, I think he just had the right mix of players and his philosophy and approach were more thoroughly understood. Basically, I see AW as the complete opposite of Mourinho – he’s not a twat to his players or a tactician who completely dissects the opposition before a game; I believe AW’s talents have always been in developing players, showing them his unwavering faith and motivating them, scouting and (generally) frugal spending of the club’s resources. He allows players to express themselves on the field and I think this has not worked thus far because we lack an unequivocal physical leader to focus and inspire the team when we aren’t playing up to par. Jack represents such a player, but we need more than one man leading us all the time. The Invincibles had motivators and players who led by example in Henry, Vieira, Bergkamp, Campbell etc. Aside from the world-class quality in those players, we lack the necessary spine that helps get a team going. This is one area that I hope AW addresses before the TW closes and I’m holding out hope since there’s 9 days left and plenty of time to turn the season around.

  24. TotalArsenal says:

    All agreed Richie, but there are also Park, Santos, Arshavin, the chap we got of MU Silvestre, Chamakh, and a few others. When things don’t go well these are the sort of players that will be picked on, and with good reason.

  25. TotalArsenal says:

    A very fine and well-balanced comment, TG! 🙂

    Your comparison between Mourinho and Wenger is spot on. That is why it is so important for Arsense to be able to keep his players, and especially those who are the embodiment of his philosophy on the pitch. Losing Fabregas was a big blow for him in that respect, and he put a lot of fate into Cazorla, but I reckon he will now build his team around Jack and the Ox and Theo (and hopefully still Ramsey). Cazorla will remain important and I hope that if and when we buy that DM we all want,we’ll see a change in formation: either 4-4-2 or Barcelona like 4-1-2-3 with Jack and Santi in the two together.

    Mourinho prepairs tactically very well, but in all this analysis and preperation something gets lost I feel, and that is why he will never be able to play beautiful, total-football for a sustained period.The same goes for Ferguson who is very much like Mourinho, although less extreme than the Portugueese waiter. Wenger is not the most extreme either: he wants to play systemic, total football but allows a lot of freedom to the players to make their own mind up what to do in their roles. The most extreme manager in regards to TF is Louis van Gaal, who demands role-discipline and the ability to play in more than one position within the team. Everybody gets drilled to play in a certain way and he does not need brilliant footballers to win things. Guardiola and Klopp are pretty similar and so is Rodgers, and as long as the Oilers do not go for one of the top TF managers we still have a chance of reaching the top again.

  26. The Gooner says:

    Great response TA!

    You actually covered an aspect of my response that I accidentally left out. I wanted to mention that it shouldn’t be as high of a priority to spend big in the transfer market, as it should be to spend big on retaining our key players. I think this philosophy has begun to switch and we’re now seeing AW commit more funds to keeping continuity in the squad.

    A 4-1-2-3 is the ideal formation for me, as it focuses on an attacking focus with the front 5, better ball retention up and relentless pressure when not in possession of the ball. Santi and Jack are ideal midfielders to play behind the front 3 and we all know Santi would be more effective from a central position. However, the DM has to be incredibly efficient in the air and in covering for the defence since the formation can often leave a team exposed at the back. We already have a penchant for conceding goals, and I’m convinced that we should play to our strengths and plan to outscore our opponents (the Barca philosophy), opposed to completely reinventing the wheel and changing our personnel and style of play.

    I have always admired Klopp and believe he is the ideal successor to AW one day. Many have proclaimed that the immediate future of football talents lies in Germany and having a manager like Klopp would only further confirm my belief that he is eventually the right man for the job. His work at BD is admirable and I too hope that he’ll turn away offers from the oil rich clubs.

  27. Red Arse says:

    Some serious debating going on today! really good stuff, richie, TG and Tazzer! 🙂

    I see the naughty boys are not here yet!

  28. Red Arse says:

    I want to share this as many of you guys are doggy people – like me!
    AA cannot have all my jokes! 😀

    Sixteen Logical Reasons Why Some Men Have Dogs And Not Wives:

    1. The later you are, the more excited your dog is to see you.

    2. Dogs don’t notice if you call them by another dog’s name.

    3. Dogs like it if you leave lots of things on the floor.

    4. Dogs’ parents never visit.

    5. Dogs agree that you have to raise your voice to get your point across.

    6. You never have to wait for a dog; they’re ready to go, instantly, 24 hours a day.

    7. Dogs find you amusing when you’re pissed.

    8. Dogs like to go hunting and fishing.

    9. Dogs won’t wake you up at night to ask: “If I died, would you get another dog?”

    10. If a dog has babies, you can put an ad in the paper and sell ‘em.

    11. When you drop a silent one, dogs don’t run around frantically with room spray.

    13. Dogs never tell you to stop scratching your balls. Instead, they sit pondering why you don’t lick ‘em.

    14. Dogs will let you put a studded collar on, without calling you a pervert.

    15. If a dog smells another dog on you, it won’t kick you in the crotch; it just finds it interesting.

    And last, but not least:
    .
    .

    .
    .

    16. If a dog runs off and leaves you, it won’t take half your stuff.

    .
    .
    .
    To verify these statements: Lock your wife and your dog in the garage for an hour.
    When you open the door, observe who’s happy to see you!

    Beat that, cat people!! 🙂

  29. TotalArsenal says:

    Klopp could be the man, TG, agreed. He would be strong candidate if Arsene were to leave one day. Let’s see how he does in Europe this season.

  30. TotalArsenal says:

    hahaha Redders 🙂

  31. richie59er says:

    Sorry Delayed reply
    Yes TA I agree but it must be remembered that Chamakh was free as was the unmentionable, (SAF’s lucky silver French piece) Park? who knows? I wonder if Arsene did a favour for someone at Monaco remember we did buy Ade Buy Bye from them for £3mil. Arsharvin had bundles of potential I think anyone watching perform for Zenit back in those days would’ve fancied him, and I don’t think anyone would’ve been able to predict that mentally he would be deficient. I still think Santos would make a great wing back if we played 3 4 3 or preferably 3 5 2. and again it should be remembered how we had so many full backs out injured and again the fans were screaming out for cover. I do believe the Spend Some F’ing Money was being thrown around like confetti.

  32. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Excellent post TA. I am so happy that you act as my spokesman on these matters. This post is a damn fine piece of litreture, and is spot on in its content.

    The “new” project is to develop an English core, in the hope that they will reach there potential and guide us to victory. Of course, they are also more likely to stay.

    Why would you embark on such a venture if you had notions of dismissing the man at the helm. If i was Kronke or Gazidis, and ime glad ime not because they are both ugly gits, i would be trying to persuade Arsene to extend his contract now.

    The clubs two biggest assets at this time are its manager, and its young British talent.

    Great times ahead.

  33. The Gooner says:

    Newcastle have just confirmed that they have signed Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa and Yoan Gouffran to deals. Hopefully seeing other teams strengthening will give AW more urgency in his own transfer dealings. Not exactly sure what his plan is, but at least he’s aware that we’re in dire need of another DM.

  34. provicial gooner says:

    arsene is deluded the sooner he fucks off to psg and arsenal recruit someone with real ambiton the better and anyone who thinks that because of his achievements which with the exception of finishing fourth for the past seven seasons stopped with scrapping the fa crap from the mancs is good enough for arsenal? well you should fuck to psg with him. but with the board at ashburton arsenal are going down hill faster than swansea are taking their place as the team who plays proper football . get your heads out of the sand before we are a thursday night joke or even worse!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  35. TotalArsenal says:

    TG – the Arsenal TW might not open till 31st of January. Frustrating times! 😦

  36. TotalArsenal says:

    Cheers Terry 🙂

    How is life treating you? And will you be at tomorrow’s match?

  37. The Gooner says:

    TA, I’m not as concerned about when it opens, so long as it does open! It would have been nice to have signed a new midfielder before our clash with West Ham tomorrow since we’re currently dealing with injuries to both our DMs and we’re currently relying on a man who just returned and has an extensive injury history, to play 4 games in 2 weeks.

  38. TotalArsenal says:

    He guys see attached for a link to the chelsea site ‘bluechampions’ where Oz Gunner answered a number of questions:

    http://bluechampions.com/2013/01/19/chelsea-vs-arsenal-views-from-an-arsenal-fan/

  39. TotalArsenal says:

    hi TG, I reckon we’ll play Frimpong and Wilshere, with Cazorla in the hole. I cannot see us playing Diaby again from the start.

  40. provincial gooner says:

    stop press twat kranke spendsmore on shooping centre than arsenal have on players since he arrived, how mch longer are these fools going to be allowed to ruin arsenal deluded manager delude board deluded fans even swansea have better players and play better football ffs wake up before we are supporting a championship side

  41. TotalArsenal says:

    What are you going to do about it Provincial G?

    And using words like ‘fuck off’ and ‘twat’ does not make you look any cleverer.

  42. The Gooner says:

    Interesting TA, I only just realized Frimpong was back from loan. Hopefully he’s made significant progress since his last appearance in the Capital One Cup, or else we’re doomed. Podolski and Chamberlain look to be back for tomorrow’s contest, so you’re likely right to think Jack will drop deeper back with Santi playing in the hole.

  43. TotalArsenal says:

    Yep, he was on the bench on Sunday. Jack and Frimmers have played together a lot and I reckon it would be our best option. Shame Jack would not be in the hole, but this is a sacrifice worth making.

  44. oz gunner says:

    Some great comments today, very good to read.

    Spewing about mbiwa!!!!

    @ TG

    Unfortunately Frimpong had quite a dismal loan period at Charlton by all accounts. Arsenal is where he is going to play his best football though; now it’s his turn to step up. I think he can!

  45. TotalArsenal says:

    VCC, if you are reading: when will be the UMF league prediction round (coming weekend is FA cup)?

  46. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi Oz, what did your miss Oz make of the game?

  47. oz gunner says:

    Hi TA. She went to bed at half time haha, she was knackered though

    The good news came on Monday when she messaged me at work.

    ‘Although it was a terrible half, Arsenal are not a chore to watch anymore! I promise! The last couple have been really exciting and even last night was good – I think I’m becoming a convert’

    Slowly but surely I’ve done it! I figured out from watching the UFC that if I can get it to appeal to her emotion side then she’s in!!!

  48. TotalArsenal says:

    Fantastic stuff Ozzer. I have known my wife for 20 years, and have never been able to instill any desire whatsoever for football/Arsenal. You have the gift, but given the quality of your pre-match reports, it does not come as a surprise.

  49. TotalArsenal says:

    Night all -> Match day tomorrow 🙂

  50. oz gunner says:

    cheers TA. That must be heart breaking…20 years.

    My approach is:

    – get her hooked on songs like ‘lu lu lu’ and ‘sign da ting’ (what girl doesn’t love a catchy tune?)
    – tell her saga’s like nasri, a.cole and rvp so she too hates them
    – only watch the big matches because then we are more than likely to front up.
    – find a ‘good guy’ in the team who appears nice, that way she thinks of Arsenal as a team full of nice guys!

    I’ll get there TA

  51. oz gunner says:

    Nite TA, I’m looking forward to it. Here’s to a FULL game of competitiveness from the Arsenal. Do that an a win is on the cards for sure

  52. richie59er says:

    @OzG Great exchange on the Chav’s blog shame our boys didn’t do the biz for 1-2 prediction. We were pancake flat for the 1st half, better 2nd but not enough urgency. Your jib about us not being consistant, was unfortunately spot on. With every match 4th is becoming harder, Desparate for a good win tomorrow!

  53. oz gunner says:

    cheers Richie. It is unfortunate. It sort of dispels the ‘youth are inconsistent’ myth because we have probably our most experienced squad for some time and we are up and down like a yo-yo.
    Our run in is easier than most of our rivals so hopefully we can string a few together this time. We have seen it a few times this season though with us stringing a few together ‘building momentum’ only for us to drop our bundle again. You are right, a good win against the hammers and then we can go from there!

  54. henrychan says:

    Morning all.. Any good news from TW..??
    are Diame and Guorcuff in yet..?? How about Stekelenberg or Lopez..??

    If Podolski and Ox return.. Then it mean we will back with our normal formation..
    I think Wenger will play 4-3-3- or 4-2-3-1:
    Scezney
    Sagna – Mertesacker – Vermaelen – Gibbs
    Diaby – Wilshere
    Walcott – Cazorla – Podolski
    Giroud
    or maybe Ox for Walcott and Walcott for Giroud..

    Eventhough I agreed with TA and OZ with 4-1-2-3 formula.. As I said like a trophy formation.. A winning formation.. hehehe..
    But I doubt Diaby will play alone as a DM and let Wilshere and Cazorla both do an AM jobs.. but whonows maybe wenger just need some other formation.. hehehe..

  55. TotalArsenal says:

    Oz @23.43 good tips, but I am afraid only a footie DNA injection would work with my missus, and my daughter is going the same way… 😦

    Hi Henry,

    I doubt Diaby will start again; 4 games in quick succession might be too much, and I thought he did not have a good game against the Chavskies. For Abou to be effective he needs to be fit and rested at this stage. I definitely agree with you that he should/will not play as a lone DM tonight.

  56. VCC says:

    Good Morning All. Below are the FA Cup fixtures this week end including Friday night;s game.

    If every one wants to submit an entry, then it can be included in the UMF 1 League .

    Thank you guys. Much love from the Yellow Jersey wearer. It’s keeping me warm during this stinking weather. lol. 😉

    25 Jan 19:45 UK Millwall v Aston Villa
    26 Jan 12:45 UK Stoke v Man City
    26 Jan 15:00 UK Brighton v Arsenal
    26 Jan 15:00 UK Middlesbrough v Aldershot
    26 Jan 15:00 UK Derby v Blackburn
    26 Jan 15:00 UK QPR v MK Dons
    26 Jan 15:00 UK Norwich v Luton
    26 Jan 15:00 UK Macclesfield v Wigan
    26 Jan 15:00 UK Reading v Sheff Utd
    26 Jan 15:00 UK Bolton v Everton
    26 Jan 15:00 UK Huddersfield v Leicester
    26 Jan 15:00 UK Hull v Barnsley
    26 Jan 17:30 UK Man Utd v Fulham
    27 Jan 12:00 UK Brentford v Chelsea
    27 Jan 14:00 UK Leeds v Tottenham
    27 Jan 16:00 UK Oldham v Liverpool

  57. TotalArsenal says:

    You are the man Vickers! UMF this weekend, yippee! 🙂

    My predictions:
    Huddersfield draw
    Leeds draw
    Oldham draw
    Stoke draw
    Bolton draw

  58. VCC says:

    cheers Total. taken a rest from blogging this week. A bit pissed to say the least.

  59. VCC says:

    Below is a quote on the Arsenal web site by Arsene Wenger……….I must say, he is very sharp. ????

    Diaby is one of the guys I will have to check. You could see he was not completely physically fresh from the start on Sunday and he did dig deep to do what he did. He has played four games on the trot after being out for three months, so I will have to check him.

    Say no more.

  60. TotalArsenal says:

    A wise decision, Vickers 🙂

    I felt like that a bit, but blog duty called.

  61. oz gunner says:

    I thought the blog had gotten better, I couldn’t quite put my finger on it but VCC’s 8.23 has solved it 🙂

    God Diaby needs a rest, Coquelin and Arteta out. May have to be a Jack/Frimpong anchor with Santi as AM

  62. VCC says:

    Your odds Total = 990-1 😉

  63. VCC says:

    Good Morning to you too Oz 🙂 cheeky, no beers for you if/when you visit the Emirates. 😉

  64. oz gunner says:

    Morning VCC. Bugger, looks like I’m back to drinking beers provided by Terry, although I’m not sure I can trust him, I’ve heard stories about his special drink known as a Ruffie Colada. One minute I’d be at the Emirates watching Arsenal next thing you know I’m in his loft wearing a ‘tug toner’

  65. henrychan says:

    TA and VCC.. Are you serious for UMF league.. this week..??
    If yes.. than I choose for City, Arsenal, Everton, Chelsea and Liverpool away win.. hehehe..
    And hoping Spurs lose and MU draw.. hahaha..

    Bradford go to COC Final..?? hehehehe… Magic..
    Who will they face in Final match..??

  66. glic says:

    Morning Great Divide`s 😆

    My pedictions for the weekend :

    Oldham
    Brentford
    Fulham
    Luton
    MK Dons

    All to win.

    I`ve got the plumber ( Chav ) outside connecting water ready for the love shack and will lay electric cable and ducting today and cover up. No rest for the wicked !. 🙂
    Spuds lost £4m due to no CL last year, I`m sure we can cover that amount if we dont qualify !. Even without the sale of RVP and Song, we had rumoured Millions to spend, thats also without taking into account our new sponsorships. One season wont bankrupt us !. 🙂

  67. glic says:

    Well done Oz !.
    I`ve been trying to Brainwash my wife for 36 years, I`ve taken her to 3 matches and even tattooed ” I hate Spuds ” on her forehead, you should see the look she get from the green grocer !, so now the bitch has a fringe !. hahaha

  68. TotalArsenal says:

    I have a pound on Chavs winning 4-2 after 90 minutes tonight. Swansea will get there though after extra-time.

    Henry, you only get two points for away wins, but three for draws 😛

  69. Red Arse says:

    Good Morning peoples of the Ether!! 🙂

    Good start to the morning — Glic’s put upon Mrs convicing him the “I hate Spuds” message had to be written in Mirror English, “sdupD etah I” now everyone thinks she is a cool Alien Princess!! 😀

  70. henrychan says:

    hahaha.. TA.. 10 points is enough.. I’m not a greedy guy.. hehehe..

    I hope we sign Diame before tonight game.. Or Diambe will not want to play because he protest the club that cheating on him for Arsenal..
    And if that happen.. we will beat them easier.. hahahaha..

    Chelsea win..?? No way.. They just lucky for Ramires cheating again us..
    and tonight they must to pay their karma.. and will lose 2-1 by Swansea..

  71. VCC says:

    Can I have a volunteer to predict on behalf of Red Arse this week. If I get no takers before KO Friday I will ask that lovely chap Vickers to choose 5 .

  72. VCC says:

    Henry’s odds = 7-1
    GLiC’s odds = 39599-1

    Oz, if your around tonight and watching the game can you send a link for streams please. Cheers 😉

  73. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    Morning all, Just like VCC this has been a very trying week for me when it comes to football and Arsenal. At times i have found my belief to be wavering.

    @VCC, go to ‘wiziwig.com’. You will find the game there for sure! i wish i knew how to paste a link, but i struggle to set the time on my microwave so i hope you understand

  74. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    @VCC, my predictions for FA cup and UMF league:-

    Shitty
    the Arsenal
    Leicester
    Chelski
    Pool
    Toffees

    all away wins

    Thanks again for the work you put in and to Total for making it possible 🙂

  75. oz gunner says:

    @ VCC

    I’ll be up at the wee hours of 320 and I can definitely send you a few streams to try.

    @ PPP

    Old people and technology don’t mix 🙂 It’s hard enough for them to click a link 🙂

  76. Arse Red says:

    VCC the Gymnast, I can fill in for my multi-verse brother known as Red Arse
    As we are bound by the space time continuum I should be able to tap into his brain and fish out some predictions. I shall work out the calculations and get back to you…farewell thee!

  77. Prince-Purrfect-Poldi says:

    @Oz,

    ” I like the bed im sleeping in,
    just like me..its broken in…
    It’s not OLD………JUST OLDER ” 🙂

  78. TotalArsenal says:

    Morning fine fellow Gooners!! 🙂

    NEW POST – NEW POST!!

    COME ON YOU RIP ROARING GUNNERS!!!!

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