Arsenal fans all over the world are currently wishing for a state of concussion, as the memories of Arsenal’s glory fade into the rapidly diminishing sunset tonight.
Memories of better times are all that Gunners fans have this season as the hopes of glory all but sink without a trace. The title is no longer a viable trophy, the FA Cup was a forlorn hope of any major silverware that would at least paper over the cracks now showing in the Wenger regime. The Champions League just happens to other teams as far as Arsenal are concerned, as once again, the Gunners give up at the first sign of any decent competition. Oh well, there’s always next year – when they’ll do it all over again.
Any consistent, positive league form is non-existent unless you call losing a fair bit, consistent. Abject displays, lack of guts, lack of flair and a decidedly shaky defence, epitomise the latest Arsenal debacle and is a million miles away from the Arsenal that we all despised anyway.
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However, in the land of red and white, it wasn’t always like that.
Gunners fans will recall the years of league titles, the last ditch win at Liverpool when they snatched the title from the Reds Anfield, the FA Cup wins, the comeback that year against Hull City, the superb, one-off side known simply as the Invincibles, the journeys in Europe and a club run on principles, values and beliefs of their most successful ever manager, now the longest serving boss in Europe.
As Arsenal fans read this, tears will well up in their eyes as they remember those moments when being a Gooner meant the world and more. When other teams looked at you and begrudgingly envied the success, the trophies, the continual top four finishes and the fact that relegation was never something to even be considered.
Now, even the fans at The Emirates are starting to turn against their manager. To turn against his team and to turn against another season like those in recent times.
This year in the Emirates trophy cabinet, there will be a gap and even third or fourth place in the Premier League is not guaranteed. Manchester City are a place behind and a point behind, whilst behind City come West Ham and Manchester United and Arsenal must play the Hammers at Upton Park next month.
It would seem unlikely that Arsenal will finish outside of their usual comfort zone because boringly, mundanely and consistently – they always do. But Arsenal fans want more and banners are being unfurled now with a message of thanks Arsene, but please go.
Even Arsenal legend Emmanuel Petit thinks that the time for change is now: “But I think Arsene needs to understand one important thing that if you want to win trophies then you need great leaders. Mentally, I think they are not strong enough.
“Arsene needs to bring players with a big potential to play with the Arsenal team but as well with a great mind, great spirit and great heart. This was the perfect year for Arsenal to win the Premier League. They missed it. That’s it.”
This month will be a season defining one for the Gunners and as a mounting criticism grows, it is either time for the manager to go or for a change of playing personnel.
This team of French rejects and Championship players are now eleven points behind Leicester City in the title race. The Foxes are managed by a man who led Greece to defeat against the Faroe Islands, which is really only a fishing village with football boots. To make matters worse, Spurs are above them in the league.
Fans congregate at The Emirates after having paid the highest amount for a season ticket anywhere in Europe to see gutless, uninspired, insipid displays in a league where if Arsenal were going to win it, then this would have been the season to do so.
Memories are fantastic, but it is all Arsenal fans have now – it’s time for the blessed relief concussion and oblivion brings.