‘Weak-spirited’ Wenger must leave for the good of Arsenal

Date published: Thursday 17th March 2016 9:59

Arsene Wenger: Shocked by Brexit

Arsene Wenger: Shocked by Brexit

Arsene Wenger must step down as Arsenal manager after Wednesday night’s Champions League elimination at the hands of Barcelona put the club on the precipice of another damaging and trophyless season.

Barring a minor miracle in the title race, which would require not one, but two sides to slip up badly, the Gunners look set to end the season with nothing to show for their efforts.

Dumped out of the League Cup in inglorious fashion at Sheffield Wednesday; seeing their two-time defence of the FA Cup end with a whimper at home to Watford; and now out of the Champions League after a 3-1 defeat at the Nou Camp on Wednesday night.

Going into the second leg chasing a 2-0 deficit, Arsenal at least showed a little bit of the fight they have recently lacked by pulling the scorelines level at 1-1 early in the second half at the Nou Camp. But goals from Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi scored to put the tie out of sight and ensure Arsenal once again fell short. It’s not just the story of their season – but the story of the last 10 years of Wenger’s reign at Arsenal.

Let’s not forget the Gunners were fortunate to get this far after making ridiculously hard work of getting through a group that contained (what should have been, let’s face it, cannon fodder) Olympiacos and Dinamo Zagreb. Either way, Wednesday’s defeat to Barcelona now makes it six successive last-16 Champions League exits.

It’s a well-worn phrase to say a manager has ‘taken a club as far as he can’, but has this ever been better exemplified by Arsenal’s recent record in Europe’s premier competition?


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Home Forums ‘Weak-spirited’ Wenger must leave for the good of Arsenal

This topic contains 15 replies, has 13 voices, and was last updated by  Al The Gooner 10 months ago.

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    James Marshment

    Arsene Wenger must step down at Arsenal after the Champions League exit to Barcelona left them facing a damaging and trophyless season.

    [See the full post at: ‘Weak-spirited’ Wenger must leave for the good of Arsenal]



    May be wrong but I really do think we will regret trying to push Arsene out the door. The potential replacements being bandied around arent filling me with excitement. Pellegrini…cant see why he is so highly rated with what hes done at City. Simeone…has anyone watched Atletico? Ok they are winners but my god the football is awful. Low…Did well with an extremely gifted Germany team, before that hasnt managed a ‘Big’ club.



    In terms of big name managers, Laurent Blanc and Massimiliano Allegri easily come to mind. Don’t see those happening, though.

    At the same time, I doubt it would be a good idea to try and go with another “Wenger” – another relative unknown who turns out to be brilliant. The romantic option would be a certain club hero who recently got his coaching badge, but therein lies the problem: he recently got his coaching badge and has literally no experience.

    Here’s an interesting option I just thought of: what about Unai Emery? I’ve always liked the teams his been in charge of. They have the mental ingredients that this Arsenal team lack sometimes and given the extra resources at his disposal, he could prove to be another Pochettino.



    Wenger must leave for the good of Arsenal?
    Sorry but this is absolute garbage? He’s never had the financial resources to really compete for major trophies like other clubs have had but has always had Arsenal in the top four? Man City, Chelsea, Man Utd, Spurs and Liverpool have spent loads compared to him, If he had the money they had he would have won trophies, He’s done good with what he’s had in the last ten years on a limited budget, You mention other managers coming in but could they do the same with that amount of money? No? If he was given some of that TV money he has earned each season he would win trophies, That’s a fact.
    I have seen Steve McClaren spend more in one season than Wenger has and we are 2nd from bottom in the league???



    Mattant79 – I don’t think you are correct about spending. In the past 5 years Arsenal have spent more than Spurs and if you also consider player sales then they have outspent Spurs by £150m. They are also not a million miles off the net spend of Liverpool and Chelsea believe it or not.

    I don’t think you can allow a manager to hide behind not having cash to spend when he has bought Ozil for £42m, Sanchez for £35m, Callum Chambers(!) for £15m etc.

    I think the frustration of Arsenal fans (and also some neutrals) is that Arsenal appear to have blown the chance to win the PL when really they should have won it at a canter once Chelsea imploded.



    he has spent a lot but Arsenal could have spent even more as they have the financial back up but Wenger choose not to


    Al The Gooner

    Mattant, sorry mate but a lot of Wenger’s failures have had nothing to do with money.

    1) No club at our level has suffered as much with injuries and, after more than a decade, Wenger still hasn’t got to the bottom of it, yet it is often been a major factor in derailing our season. I’m no expert on these matters and I’ll happily admit that, but people with a lot more knowledge than me regularly point out that very few of our injuries are impact-related, suggesting that it’s more to do with how Wenger prepares his players.

    2) Wenger’s idea of defence is playing keep-ball. He reasons that if the opposition don’t have the ball, they can’t score. The problem is that no team is ever going to have 100% possession and our opposition generally need only a small amount of possession to create a chance and score from it.

    3) The worn out “no plan B”, yet it’s true – well, partially true. His plan B is to throw three forwards on, which involves subbing our man of the match to that point, far more often than it should do.

    4) Regularly buying the wrong players, for the wrong positions and then playing them out of position for their entire Arsenal career.

    5) His insistence that all his players are leaders when, in fact, few of them are and not one is strong enough to grab a game by the scruff of the neck and drag everyone else over the line.

    6) His favouritism towards certain players over the years, persisting with them when the under-perform, when he has had better options available.

    None of the above require massive amounts of money to deal with and most require no financial outlay at all, but Abramovic or Mansour’s money would have done us no good anyway, because Wenger doesn’t like spending.

    Leicester’s first choice eleven cost about half an Ozil, a player I’m convinced Wenger only purchased because of his price-tag. Had the circumstances been different, Madrid would have offered Ozil around to more teams and, as our manager considers bidding-wars beneath his dignity, Oz would have gone elsewhere.

    Same thing with Sanchez – we did seem to be the only club involved. Had anyone else been involved, he would have gone for a lot more than £35m and it wouldn’t have been to us, because Wenger would have refused to pay it, even though he has money now.



    Nicely summed up Al_the_Gooner. Have we made any progress in the last 10 years? I don’t think so! Okay we have won the cup but in terms of PL and CL we have gone backwards. The gulf between us and Barca and Bayern has increased. The reasons that teams find it easy to score against us even if they have 25% possession and a fraction of the shots we have is because our midfield just don’t know how to defend and our back four are all over the place. This is Wengers fault because he hasn’t bought the right type of players and we don’t have the right balance. AW has refused acknowledge this and his tactics and coaching skills are not good enough to try and emulate Barca. The frustrating thing is that he has won the PL before and needs to look back and see the strength we had in midfield, world class strikers in Henry and Bergkamp – solid defenders Sol Campbell, Keown etc. We had real leaders – who is the leader in our team now. I can’t think of anyone.



    I don’t think he is week spirited but his teams or players come across weak. Which you could say is his fault because he brought them. Wenger will go at the end of his contract and unless I see a better option that’s fine by me. Fans delude themselves that there is something better out there and we will then win the league. Man city Chelsea Man united will always have, bigger budgets than us bigger and more expensive squads. So in theory we should finish forth which we have done or more every year.



    Stev2bath – you sound like wenger. All the other clubs have more money it’s not fair, how can we compete when they can spend millions more. Well that argument got well and truly thrown out the moment everyone realised that Leicester or Spurs will win the league. 2 small teams fighting it out for the league, with less budgets and what many would call inferior squads to that of Chelsea, city and even Arsenal. money helps but it’s not the be all and end all of success for clubs.
    Fans delude themselves by thinking there is no life after winger, that things can’t be better, that things won’t move forward.
    I have said it a hundred times but if Jose, fergie, hiddink, pep etc had the teams and budgets that winger had over last 10 years all of them would have won more than him.




    I agree that we might be deluded that there is someone better outthere for us but that does not mean that we should not try…We may go backwards like Pool or Utd have but as you said we have been 4th best for much of the last 10 yrs and while it has been frustrating knowing that if we perhaps had just one more player or one player had stayed fit at certain times over those years then maybe just maybe it could have been different…

    This year however with the breakup of the monopoly of the Big 3 spenders the fact that we have stagnated or stuttered depending on your view point and been passed at the minute by Leicester and Spurs has only strengthened the resolve of the Wenger out camp and more importantly it must have left the Wenger in camp brigade with very little defensive option much like the Arsenal rearguard this season…

    I understand that as fans we want to win the League and although I would say I have supported Arsenal for around 35yrs, living in Scotland I have also supported Hearts so watching them and knowing that the Old Firm are so far in front in terms of resources has probably made the situation with Arsenal the last 10 years easier to understand and accept than others who may have Arsenal as the foremost thing for them…I know what I mean and I hope that everyone understands what I am trying to say on both counts…

    On Wenger, I think we have to accept that he will be here for 1 more year. I just do not see him walking out or the board sacking him. If he is arrogant as certain people seem to think there is no way he walks. I also believe that what certain people who shout that he must go should also consider is that despite your viewpoint being polar opposite, Wenger believes and is steeped in Arsenal as much as many supporters now and so he to must believe that what he does on a day to day week to week basis is well for the good of the long term stability and success both on and off the field. For me long term off looks safe just now but short term on is majorly lacking and forget investment in big buys what the problem is for us is the fact that our academy that certain people laud has not produced the quality or quantity of first team players that it should have over the last 10 yrs.


    Al The Gooner

    Stev2bath, another thing about Wenger, that is so often overlooked, is the amount of time he’s had.

    I doubt it was a coincidence that David Moyes did so well, for so long, at Everton, but has since struggled to find the same consistency anywhere else. At Everton, he had time to build his team and to pick every player to suit the system he wanted to play.

    It’s a complete fallacy to believe that there is no other manager on this planet who can do what Wenger has done and if you’re honest, you’ll realise what an absurd notion it is that out of however many thousands of managers there have been over the last 20 years, we lucked out by picking the one and only manager capable of getting us 4th place every season.

    Maybe what we really need is David Dein to find the man for us – after all, he also brought in George Graham.

    The other thing is that Wenger WILL leave at some point, whether he’s forced out or leaves of his own accord so, if you really believe no one can possibly do what he’s done, then what does it matter? If that’s true, we’re screwed anyway.



    Totally agree Al. I still think that the majority of fans that think its time for Wenger to move aside have come to the point where out patience has evaporated. Gilberto is the latest ex-player/pundit to say that Wenger deserves more respect. The thing is, no-one will ever forget or disrespect Wenger’s legacy. What he did for Arsenal and the English Game is outstanding. We had an amazing run of it, but the rest of the game caught up.

    Mattant79 – I hear you and you are right, being able to compete in the CL whilst under such financial pressure was another truly admirable facet of Wenger’s talent (in my opinion) and whilst that may seem to be the football equivalent of “1st world problems” to fans of smaller clubs, it is what it is.

    What is becoming unpalatable is the fact that their seems to be rot at every level of the club. All of Al’s points above hold true with regards to non- financial shortcomings that we have been experiencing for too long now. We held onto numerous players that we should not have in the past (Denilson, Bendtner to name a few) and our current stock of players simply are not good enough (Theo being the main culprit IMHO) yet are allowed to re-negotiate new contracts it seems under their own terms. On this point as well whilst I am delighted at the emergence of Campbell, Coqulin and some of our younger players (and yes, Wellbeck, now back is like a new signing!) I still feel that our recent buys are looking like panic buys and not what we needed (even Ozil and Sanchez to an extent).

    We now have a manager getting perilously close to tarnishing his image beyond all repair with his tirades against the press, and now fans, everytime his football management credentials are scrutinized. His recent outburst remind me of someone – Sepp Blatter. Seriously, it does.

    We have an owner who has gone on record stating that Arsenal is a business interest only.

    So, yes, Wenger should feel the strain and he should act accordingly. Either start getting the results and prove everyone wrong or leave. Ultimately retain the respect you have left, or understnad that the fanbase deserves a little more respect as well.


    Al The Gooner

    MMD, I think your Blatter reference is spot on mate.

    Obviously, whatever else we think of Wenger, he’s 1,000 times the man that Blatter is and in a lot of ways, it’s unfair to mention the two even in the same sentence, but where they share huge similarities is their denial that anything is their fault, their over-inflated belief of how important they are to Arsenal/FIFA respectively, their desperation to cling on to a job that few people want them doing anymore and their utter contempt for the fans who (ultimately) pay their wages.



    Will he or won’t he be sacked or leave at the end of the season? I think that if we do not make the ECL; he may walk. However the question that follows is what will our inept and unambitious board do? I do not for one moment think they have either the ability/the desire perhaps to bring in a top manager or the inclination to give a new manager the financial backing to improve the team. I may sound pessimistic but we have just begun our downward spiral toward mediocrity. Arsenal are weird. Back in the seventies we ended up selling several of our stars (Kennedy, Mc Lintock, George…); in the 90’s (selling Thomas and Rocastle and casting aside Limpars…). And now the current morass. Maybe we just do not want to be a top top team. Wenger is not the guy to shake up this mindset it appears.


    Al The Gooner

    Ahmad – just wanted to comment on Rocky being sold, because it’s something that still rankles with me to this day. That was GG and his dislike of having flair players in his team.

    I still remember Rocky’s account. GG called him over to his car after training and bluntly told him he’d been sold to Leeds – Rocky had no idea about any of it until that moment.

    I think Thomas was a good sale though. For Gooners of our generation, in one split second, Micky gave us our happiest football memory – still the best one to this day – but he didn’t do a lot else. When he turned up to a game, he could be brilliant, but more often than not, you barely knew he was on the pitch – and quite often wished he wasn’t!

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