Arsenal Supporters Have Only One Hope Left

The Power and the Glory
“The great fallacy is that the game is first and last about winning,”  “It is nothing of the kind. The game is about glory, it is about doing things in style and with a flourish.”
Written by the great Spurs Double Captain, and all round top bloke, Danny Blanchflower in the ’60’s when Spurs were amongst the best clubs in the world.
But his words do not translate into modern football. It is no longer a Glory game – it is a business, pure and simple. We are no longer fans, we have become Clients.
When did this start? In my opinion with the Bosman agreement. Players were no longer “owned” by clubs, now they could negotiate their own contracts and leave at the end of them, this led to the development of the Player Agent. And it all went t*ts-up.
So we get player power. A disaster for the clubs. An example … Gareth Bale (another ex-Spur) earns €600k a week and is totally disrespectful toward his employers!!
My point?
Well, I have insider information from Tottenham’s dressing room and was told two weeks ago that there was a rebellious atmosphere with the players determined to remove Poch. And they have.
I very much doubt they expected to have the disciplinarian Me-rinho as his successor (but that’s another story).
What has this to do with AFC?
Do you think the players enjoy Emery’s work ethic and tactics? Does a lethal striker like PEA want to spend much of his time in front of his own back 4? Will Pepe be satisfied with a bench position and playing 15 minutes a game?  You know the problems – we have discussed them extensively.
If the BoD are so financially driven that they don’t want to pay off Emery and his staff perhaps the players will be the catalyst to effect change.
We can only hope.
By Erik the Red.

18 thoughts on “Arsenal Supporters Have Only One Hope Left

  • Cheers EtR, I like your succinct, slightly mysterious post a lot. Player power is a nightmare for club owners but even more so by the (temporary) managers. I have no doubt that the players, other than some youngsters, have big reservations regarding Emery’s style and managerial/tactical abilities. Language appears to be a big issue in all of this but there is also a hint of simply not understanding how Millennials work and need to be motivated. Klopp, Guardiola, Wenger etc have the ability to both be dominant and persuasive and I just don’t think Emery has got the balance right.

    I am not sure whether the cost involved in letting Emery go is holding the BoD back; I guess the biggest challenge is to get the next manager right, as another mistake will mean management heads will role. That’s why my (ridiculed by some) suggestion that Arsene comes in to do an interim job for us makes such sense to me. Of course I don’t know whether Arsene would want to do this and his new role may make that impossible now, but there you go.

  • Good point, Erik.
    What I can think of is Arsenal (and maybe later other clubs) boycotting those agents that are ‘known’ of putting their financial gain over the interest of the player’s long term career. I would be idolizing a club executive that shares at a press conference that “while we consider Marcus Thuram a promising starlet, we didn’t and wouldn’t make a move signing him, as we don’t deal with anyone who is represented by Mino Raiola – on general principle”.
    Still breaks my heart that Alexis Sanchez could have become a club legend at Arsenal, but ended up a pariah. Yes, a rich pariah indeed, earning over 500k a week, but making ‘only’ 300k in Arsenal wouldn’t have made him penniless either. Now he has limited playing time, enemies all over the dressing room, and losing the opportunity to challenge the best players of his position like Neymar, Hazard, Sterling, Mane and Sane. I honestly don’t think that the salary difference was worth it.
    Similarly I hold no sympathies over Ramsey, and wish that he regrets his decision as well as Rabiot.

  • Firstly to Erik. Good post regarding players being the game changer and getting contracted like clients, and not going to a club that he loves.

    Our players have openly stated that they want to play better, and are behind Emery and the club, and have no desire for that to change. This is the reason our board decided that they will stick to Emery.

    If more players had enough of him like Torreira, we will then see him out pronto. I am not dying for that to happen, but i know that Pb and Admir will like it to happen. PE is also close to that stand.

    Coming to Pb, i chuckled when you used the word Pariah. We use that often in local colloquial terms when we dislike someone so badly, sometimes when undermining a certain race too. But i will keep that between our shores.

  • I had a session of Vertigo, hit the wrong button and lost a long post – true.
    So here is a short one.


    Least wins in our EPL hostory
    Least points in our EPL history
    Least goals for since 1998/99
    Most goals against in our EPL history
    Worst goals against in our EPL history

    I guess that Silent Stan needs to open his mouth and bark out some orders.

    Great post Erik, one point – Emery only has 6/7 months left on his contract so moner should not be the reason to keep him – so what evidence is there?

  • Arsenal fans want ‘urgent action’ from ‘rudderless’ club

    Arsenal were held to a 2-2 draw at home by strugglers Southampton on Saturday

    A number of prominent Arsenal supporters’ groups say “urgent action” is needed to halt the “alarming and desperate state of things” at the club.

    In July, they called for owner Stan Kroenke to “reinvigorate” the Gunners.

    Arsenal are eighth in the Premier League, eight points adrift of a top-four Champions League qualifying spot.

    “It feels like the club is rudderless and floating aimlessly, unsure of its destination,” said a statement from the fan groups.

    The collective of fans say they are backed by a petition with 120,000 signatures.

    Kroenke first invested in Arsenal in 2007 and became majority shareholder in 2011.

    The Gunners have not won the league since 2004 and their most recent successes came with FA Cup wins in 2014, 2015 and 2017.

    The supporters’ groups said that, while issues raised in the July letter “have not gone away, it is the overall alarming and desperate state of things, on and off the pitch, that need urgent action and take precedent amongst our concerns”.

    They added: “Until the club, especially the senior management structure, is running efficiently, effectively and ambitiously then few other issues can, or will, be satisfactorily resolved.

    “The last decade, notwithstanding the FA Cup wins, can legitimately be seen as lost years, both on and off the field, when the team has not only stagnated but actually regressed.

    “To date, that is the legacy of the ‘Kroenke years’.”

    BBC Sport has contacted Arsenal for comment about the letter.

  • Erik, clearly you wouldn’t mind the players leveraging it for us. Hmmmmm. A bit of an unknown territory for my liking.

    Player power is a reality. These days it’s critical that coaches be super as man managers. This is an area where I suspect Emery is very poor.

  • Thanks for this ETR!
    ‘Over here’, been similar to the Bosman ruling in US pro sports since 1975 (free agency for players; baseball first)– the bases of it starting with a 1972 US Supreme Court ruling. My view is– don’t blame the players. It’s the obscene amounts of money that changes anything and everything. Back when owners made a living– and players had second jobs– a more innocent time? There were no thoughts of ‘I want mine.’ Then came TV rights. And cable. Then internet. A Pandora’s Box progression– of tech (and cash) that could not be ignored nor stanched.

    Progress. Isn’t always. 😏

    + + +

    Your comment Erik: “Do you think the players enjoy Emery’s work ethic and tactics?”
    Honestly? I think they think like we think: “How the hell is he still here?”
    This is torture. For everyone except the blessedly ignorant– in charge of the dungeon.


  • At ‘The Athletic’ Amy Lawrence wrote an article revolving around Sir Chips Cheswick’s pronouncement that he may step down. The discussion there varied. The majority of comments on why this manager still has his job.

    Found this one comment that had a succinct bit of information on just how bad it’s been over the last half-season– based on the lack-of-strength of the schedule Arsenal faced in that time.

    I don’t know ‘Daniel D.’. But I liked how much information he offered in as few words as this:
    * * *
    “Daniel D. Nov 23, 10:17pm 49 likes

    No opinion here, just the record:
    Arsenal’s last 19 Premier League matches have been one of the easiest half-season runs of fixtures any team will ever get.
    Watford, Palace, at Wolves, at Leicester, Brighton, Burnley, at Newcastle, Burnley, at Liverpool, Spurs, at Watford, Villa, at United, Bournemouth, at Sheffield United, Palace, Wolves, at Leicester, Southampton.
    That’s Liverpool once, Spurs once, and Man U once– no Chelsea, no Man City.
    11 home, 8 away.
    Arsenal have won a total of 22 points from those last 19 matches, a pace of 44 points over a full season.
    Outscored 27-31, a pace of 54 goals scored, 62 allowed over a full season.

    All against the softest half-season schedule you’ll ever see.”
    * * *

    Characterizing last season– the two-halves of it?
    The first-half with the 22-match unbeaten run? Was akin to a novice gambler going on the hottest streak of his entire gambling life. Hitting everything. Everything turning to gold.
    The second-half? Trying the same techniques? Results were mixed– then at the end broke badly. Very badly. Culminating mercilessly in Baku.

    This year? Emery tried, like most gambling addicts– to recapture once-upon-a-time lightning-in-a-bottle. But Fortuna refuses to smile in Unai Emery’s direction.

    Luck abandoned Arsenal nearly a year ago.
    Emery remains. Doubling down on losing-hands.
    And why not? He’s playing with house money.


  • I’m glad that Erik touched the most important thing in his piece: the player power.

    I’m short with time so I’ll say it one sentence: today, it would be David Beckham who would kick the boot in Alex Ferguson’s head and not the other way around.

  • @njk84sg

    Because there can’t be one. You can no longer stay at the same club long enough to establish your dictatorship (yes, I used the D word) because of various reasons and players can kick your bottom whenever they feel it’s time to do so. Hazard and Pogba did it to Mourinho and I feel our players may be on the same track with Emery. Long gone are days when George Graham could come to Rocky and tell him he was sold to Leeds or when Graham’s compatriot Ferguson could tell the same thing to Jaap Stam. Big football teams have millionaires on the pitch, millionaires that have put their own faith into the hands of football agents. Agents do the dirty work for their clients – just take a look how strongly Mesut’s Mr 15% replied to derogatory comments aimed at his client.

    I fear the whole talk about Espirito Santo is based on the relationship our suits have established with Jorge Mendes and that we might become his playground after he gets bored from the dancing with Wolves.

  • Admir. Agree but you have caused me some concern … who mentioned Santo?? Not that he could be any worse than UE.

    JW1. 17.11. That is dreadful. The chaps who run our club (not the BoD anymore) must know these stats. How can they allow it to continue? We will surely beat Frankfurt and then they will give UE more time to ruin our club.

    Some good games tonight.

  • @Erik

    I believe Santo is another Mendes’ puppet who would struggle to cope with our midfield situation. At Wolves, he has Neves and Moutinho that would walk straight into our first eleven.

    Did you know he was sacked by Valencia after a defeat to Enemy’s Sevilla?

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