Arsenal’s last trophy win in 2005 when they lifted the FA Cup, there has certainly been a turning point.

A man with his first name remarkably similar to his club’s name, an eloquent Frenchman who likes beautiful football; Arsene Wenger appeared to be the perfect fit for Arsenal, and it would have taken a brave man to suggest otherwise during ‘The Invincibles’ years.

But in my opinion, the Frenchman has been living off the past successes of a squad that are now all retired or firmly into their twilight years. It’s all well and good qualifying for the Champions League consecutively since the 1997/1998 season, but is that really an achievement? Surely, considering what The Invincibles accomplished around a decade ago, the knock-on effect should be a team that can consistently finish in the top four at the very least, not at best.

With Arsenal now tenth in the Premier League, rumours of dressing room bust-ups involving Steve Bould, and the Black Scarf Movement protesting against the commercialisation of the club, Wenger currently faces the most realistic chance to date of losing his job. Not that the Arsenal board would sack him – Wenger has been making the Arsenal politico and businessmen some serious money with his small-spending tendencies. Should Wenger resign, it would come through pressure from the fans, not because of the board.

The Arsenal first-team has become consistently worse ever since they last won the league, and furthermore, the Gunners are now a selling club – the Premier League’s answer to Ajax. Their best players have left after a couple of successful seasons at the Emirates, and often to sign for their league rivals. It doesn’t take a genius to work out that a team cannot progress or naturally better itself if their top players are continually leaving for clubs that Arsenal are meant to be competing with. Wenger tries to find the next young solution to the wavering quality in the squad, spending small or middle-ranging fees on potential stars, but the other side of the coin is that it leaves the team in permanent transition. Furthermore, those signings that prove successful subsequently leave.

The problems at Arsenal have been long-term, but something about this current season in particular seems to capture and symbolise them. In the summer, the two biggest stars left for teams Arsenal should be competing with. Robin van Persie jumped ship to Manchester United and Alex Song was a surprise signing for Barcelona. Wenger’s resolution to losing his only players that can truly be considered world class is the signing of Olivier Giroud – based on two good seasons in the French league – and the retraining of Mikel Arteta to play a deeper role in midfield.

Giroud’s price-tag should have been some indication of his abilities. Despite winning Ligue 1, with the French forward being the division’s top goal-scorer, Montpellier let their striker for leave for just £12million. I’m not one for all this big money spending that dominates the game nowadays but if Giroud was truly a world beater, he would have cost an arm and a leg. The same applies to Lukas Podolski and Santi Cazorla. It’s not that the new signings have been particularly poor, in fact Cazorla started the season in excellent form, but they have hardly reinvigorated the team. Arsene Wenger has already announced he will not be using the January transfer window as an opportunity to splash the cash and change his side’s fortunes – how unsurprising.

The fans are angry because it’s not as if the money hasn’t been there to invest in the team and replace the stars that have left the club. Arsenal charge the most for season ticket prices and match-day food out of any Premier League team. The club have collected sizeable fees for their exiting players, although they could have claimed even more had Arsenal won enough trophies to convince their players to sign new contracts. The move to the new Emirates stadium, leaving behind the Gunners’ historical home, has brought in huge revenues in sponsorship that the club should be benefiting from. Furthermore, no one seems to be taking responsibility for the club’s failings.

It feels like Arsene Wenger is steering a sinking ship down a tiny river, in the hope that he won’t submerge into the murky water or come unstuck in the muddy riverbeds. There is certainly a “damned if they do, damned if they don’t” feeling about Wenger potentially parting company with a club he has been with since 1996. But then again, he doesn’t look like a man capable of winning the league, or even capable of turning Arsenal back into title-contenders.

His transfer policy is out-dated. Not every player has to break the bank, but to maintain a level of quality in the modern game, large fees must be parted with to sign top-level talent. At the other end, too many good players have been allowed to leave to domestic and European rivals: Kolo Toure, Gael Clichy, Samir Nasri, Emmanuel Adebayor, Cesc Fabregas, Alex Song and Robin van Persie to name the most high-profile cases. Furthermore, Wenger has failed to win a trophy in nearly ten years. Since 2005, all of the top six apart from Everton have lifted silverware.

Now though, it appears that Wenger has finally lost the support of the fans. They are tired of the stalling progress, and with no real plan to turn the club’s fortunes around. With the board remaining muted by the large rolls of cash Wenger’s management style stuffs their mouths with, Wenger should listen to the fans and strongly consider his future before a peasants’ revolt has him and the board with their heads resting on the chopping block.

Why have a messy divorce when you can walk away and remember the good times?


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  • John
    2 years ago

    Oh boy oh boy, I have read ignorant drivel but this is taking the p!ss. I am absolutely for a discussion of should he stay or should he go and I’m thinking go myself but please please can we have some intelligent informed discussion? This piece of cr@p writing is just reeling off cliches, half truths and blatent nonsense. Do your F.cking research before you write something. Oh well, off to the pub to support the team.

    Reply
    • john
      2 years ago

      well said my man i totally agree with you

      Reply
    • James
      2 years ago

      Shut your trash!!!

      Reply
  • john
    2 years ago

    We love u wenger we do we love u wenger we do we love u wenger we do o arsen we love u

    Reply
  • Fickle
    2 years ago

    You sound like Piers Morgan, another uninformed alarmist!

    Reply
  • lorenzo
    2 years ago

    hi christy malyan, the only reason you have a life is because you sit down after doing nothing to spill drivel about a man who made English football what it is today, you and your co-hyenas sorry you like to be called journo’s these days sell acres of newspaper pages just because the name Wenger appears on it. in fact he’s the reason you have a job. why should he leave? one cogent reason? last season the likes of you wanted him out; he qualified for the CL league in spite of you. your media darling Arry the twitch perfected the art of brinkmanship but when he was tested at a fairly high level, he blew a 10 point gap to who else Wenger did i hear you call for arry’s head no he’s a chum. mancini has been kicked out of the champions league wihout a win did you call for his head no. please explain to me exactly why Wenger should leave? get a life write about birds or ants you could actually come off as erudite leave football matters to the prof at least he knows what he’s talking about and he’s proved it 14x.

    Reply
    • Christy Malyan
      2 years ago

      Well, as i said in my article, Arsenal haven’t won any silverwear since 2005. Because of this, the best players have left and team has been slowly declining in quality. I believe Wenger is a successful and talented manager but he has to take some responsibility for the fact the team is a shadow of what it used to be. Wenger’s transfer policy is verging on senile. Tottenham refused to sell Modric to Chelsea because they were in the same league, but Wenger lets Arsenal players leave to league rivals as long as they offer him a fair deal, and often its not even a good deal. £24 million for the best striker in the Premier League is an absolute steal in my opinion considering Fernando Torres cost £50million, and Falcao is rated at a similar price. Wenger should leave because he clearly has no solution to the club’s current problems, he has already said he won’t spend money in January despite an obvious gap in quality between Arsenal and the two Manchester Clubs and Chelsea. I can understand fan loyalty to a man who has won you many trophies in the first half of his Arsenal career, but he has now been in charge whilst the team has constantly declined and that is his responsibility. Do you really think he looks like a man that can turn Arsenal back into title contenders? Because to put it simply, i don’t. And considering the finances available at Arsenal, not to mention the club’s reputation, they still should be title contenders instead of finishing third and fourth. That is why Wenger should leave. Also I have no idea what Harry Redknapp has to do with any of this – you have in fact rubbished your own argument in my opinion by citing Redknapp as he was fired for not reaching his requirement of qualifying for the Champions League. Also, his failure to do so considering the 10 point gap only suggests that Arsenal’s achievement of finishing 3rd last year was down to Redknapp’s failures, along with the failures of Chelsea and Liverpool.

      Reply
      • lorenzo
        2 years ago

        one question how many years did torres have on his contract when he was sold? you journo’s will be saying diaby is no good the club is waiting on his fitness to offer a new deal, he get’s one good year and decides he wants a ton of money? how can wenger influence that? it would stupid of me to say wenger has made all the calls right, but to listen to journalists talk about losing our best players like we held an auction is just plain lazy, what about player loyalty? would Ferguson have stuck with van-persie like wenger did?would he work under the constraints that wenger had to? i’m yet to hear a single journalist complain about the absolute horror of player greed; nasri, adebayor, van-persie clichy,sinclair, these are extenuating circumstances, but instead of picking facts, you’d rather rehash the party line. i have nothing against you. but please come up something original, present a logical argument from both sides. give some balance to your report then it won’t come off as biased as it is. appreciate the difference in opinion but please stick to the issue not the man.

        Reply
        • lorenzo
          2 years ago

          listen to your self;
          with the French forward being the division’s top goal-scorer, Montpellier let their striker for leave for just £12million. I’m not one for all this big money spending that dominates the game nowadays but if Giroud was truly a world beater, he would have cost an arm and a leg.
          have you heard of; cazorla,michu,kompany,js park,gareth bale? which of them cost more than 12 million pounds?

          Reply
  • Christy Malyan
    2 years ago

    I’m not saying there aren’t deals to be had, of course there are, but if there is a limit a club is willing to spend on a player, such as Arsenal under Arsene Wenger, then every purchase becomes a punt as oppose to a certainty. If spending big didn’t work, Manchester City and Chelsea wouldn’t have become league champions. The fact is, in the modern game, top end players cost top end prices. When is the last time Wenger brought in a player who is at the peak of his game and is truly a world class player? Three of the players you have cited Kompany, Ji Sung Park and Gareth Bale, all play for teams that not only buy bargains but are also willing to spend large fees for top level talent.

    And I think I have discovered our core difference in opinion. You said “please stick to the issue not the man”, but Wenger is the issue in my opinion. I understand your argument also about player greed, but there is a flip-side to that which is quite simply players want to win trophies, it doesn’t matter what trophy but that is what they look back on once their career has finished. That is why players don’t want to stay at Arsenal (not in all cases of course) but on the whole it’s because their opportunity to win trophies is greater at other clubs. Robin Van Persie is now 29, but what has he actually achieved in his career at Arsenal despite being there for eight years? He was part of a team that won the FA Cup in 2005, and that’s it. At Man United he has the chance to win the Premier League, Champions League, League Cup and FA Cup. Wenger doesn’t even take the latter two competitions particularly seriously. You say Wenger is under constraints but what constraints is he actually under? How can it be that Arsenal have no money to spend when they let players leave for vast sums, charge extortionate season ticket prices and have a brand new stadium with vast sponsorship deals. I honestly believe my argument is logical. I will break it into single points. Arsene Wenger hasn’t won a trophy since 2005. In that time, the team has got worse. Wenger should have brought in a star player or two, who are currently at their peak to change that, instead of buying players that will play better and develop three or four years after they are bought. The club have had money, there is no reason Wenger and the board haven’t spent more in the transfer market. You also now have a team with some very useless second string players; Arshavin, Squillaci, Andre Santos, Chamackh. Arsene Wenger has no plan b, he will continue to buy cheaper players in the hope he will eventually uncover some gems. Because of this, it could easily be another eight years before Arsenal win another trophy. He appears to have no immediate solution and also does not seem to be held responsible for the team’s demise in quality, even though he should be at least to some extent. Therefore he should leave. Wenger is a man of principles, and they are good and admirable ones, but they are fast becoming outdated in the modern game.

    Reply
  • Whelts
    2 years ago

    Having been an Arsenal supporter for many years (and I mean MANY), I have become a realist when it comes to looking at the team that I love. And when I say realist that means saying what is really happening.

    There does come a time when even those who think Wenger is fantastic must say hang on …….. is he doing his best for the club? I am the first to admit that Wenger has been fantastic and dragged Arsenal up by the boot straps making them a formidable force in the footballing world. BUT that I’m afraid is a long time ago. Yes getting into the Champions League is fine but do we really think we can compete with the top teams in Europe?

    I ask all Arsenal fans before they fly off the handle and shout abuse at me to think about that. If we for example play Barca or Real tomorrow, how confident would you really be? And if Man Utd or Chelski were to play them would you be just as confident of the result? If you think Man Utd and Chelski stand a better chance, ask yourself, why?

    I’m not one of those who thinks that the problems we have will go away if we threw money at it. We have a problem with the wage structure for for a start, where we pay large sums to mediocre players. Well who’s responsible for that?

    We allow our best players to go to our direct competition. Who’s responsible for that?

    We have a team that includes some real quality players and they don’t perform on the day. Who’s responsible for that?

    We often have to play quality teams and we know exactly how they will play against us but Arsenal play the same way day in, day out. Who’s responsible for that?

    We play teams that are poor and on paper, we should crush them but when it comes to the game, they pressurise us, defend in numbers and score on a quick break. The fans expected it, the team somehow, didn’t. Who’s responsible for that?

    How often have you seen a player who we all know, is having a bad time of it, play game after game? And we know there are better players on the bench and have been for weeks. Who’s responsible for that?

    When the game isn’t going our way (and recently, that is quite often) in the 72 minute, we make the wrong substitutions. We bring on another player who is going through a bad time. Who’s responsible for that?

    We have a team on the pitch that is lacking in effort, slow to the ball, bringing new meaning to the word lethargic and all the manager can do is moan at the forth official about some spurious decision. Who’s responsible for that?

    I hate to say it but it’s sad for me to watch other teams with their managers running around shouting advice, moving players to different positions on the field, changing formations when it is necessary and generally motivating their players, why? Because they are the managers and THEY are responsible for that.

    Good article Christy. We need a few home truths and hopefully people will start to open their eyes and see what is really happening to our beloved team. Something needs to happen before it’s too late.

    Reply