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Gooners: Are We Surprised?

Chelsea’s 2-0 defeat of Arsenal was a perfect display in efficient, composed football by the hosts. This was a seemingly deja vu contest of watching the Arsenal Reds held at bay by the Chelsea Blues. The fact that many Arsenal supporters seem to lack too much surprise at the result is a testament to what we’ve been conditioned to accept by Arsene Wenger and the Club as a whole.

This opinion piece will no doubt be seen as a knee-jerk reaction to another Chelsea loss, but the facts are clear for all to see, and they are that this Arsenal team perennially fail to beat the so-called big boys. When was the last top four team in the Premier League to have been convincingly taken to the sword, and beaten, by the Arsenal in the past 5 years? Our expectations have seemingly gone from an outrage at a loss, to simple acceptance of a hard-fought game. Is this the ambition of a team that used to dominate England with pace, power, and confidence. Gone are the days where a rearguard action saved the day, when truly world-class players at the top of their respective games terrorised defenses. Instead, we’ve been left to witness up-and-coming ‘starlets’ stumble season upon season without a trophy yield. This game was a masterclass of experience over a blind passing game with no end-product. Of course, Arsenal were not without their chances, but that is a recurring theme. Chelsea never looked bothered or uncertain, the goals were a matter of time in the minds of both the home and away support. Is this what we’ve come to be happy with?

There most definitely is more than one problem with this Arsenal team, but lack of a true winning mentality is perhaps the most glaring. Pundits proclaim that this Arsenal team can no longer be accused to lacking experience, but what have they experienced? Van Persie and Cesc aside, no one in this team has ever won a trophy with Arsenal. Every player is well-versed in the art of underachieving and leaving supporters feeling short-changed. But where is the blame to lie?

It is easiest and perhaps most convenient to primarily blame Arsene Wenger, but this approach has its merit. The systematic clearing out conducted post-Invicibles has left the Club as a whole without players from whom to pass a winning tradition. One only has to look at how a weakened Manchester United team can nevertheless compete due to the absolute demand put upon winning by veteran players such as Giggs, Scholes, Ferdinand, et cetera. Where are those players for the Arsenal? Cesc had his Vieira, but only for awhile. Now, at 23, he’s expected to be some sort of all-knowing on-and-off-the-field messiah, but where else in the upper echelon of world football is this kind of expectation found? A player of similar age and talent, Lionel Messi, has no such responsibility and can thus focus more on playing. Yet when Cesc was making noises about leaving this summer, some supporters were labeling him a traitor and questioning his loyalty, but he’s seen first-hand the effects caused by the departure of so many experienced players. When he leaves, who will be Ramsey’s and Wilshere’s Vieira? Who is there to keep Bendtner in line and tell him how much work it takes to achieve his lofty ambitions? We, as a Club, have a 20 year-old keeper demanding he march straight into the first-team. Can the same thing be seen at clubs like Milan, Real Madrid, or Bayern Munich? Surely, Wenger has done well to raise the profile of the Club, yet he has made many mistakes he simply will not atone for. One needs only to look at the failure to re-sign Sol Campbell this summer as testament to the fact that Wenger has a perverted totalist approach to his youth policy, and simply will not budge from it. Is this what we are happy with as supporters? Does anyone have a true expectation that the current set-up of players will ever make it?

This is not a “Wenger Out Now” type of article, merely a retort for Arsenal fans to ask themselves: exactly when will we, as a whole, agree that a major change in club strategy be the only way out of this cycle of failure?

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arsenal4ever
arsenal4ever
10 years ago

but you are right, wenger out!!!

Danish Gooner
Danish Gooner
10 years ago

Wenger should have gone last season but the board will never fire him,he makes them incredible sums of money.

Harry Barracuda
Harry Barracuda
10 years ago

We created good chances and didn’t take them. So Chelsea defended better than we did. Not the end of the world, is it?

But no, there are dicks that want the manager out.

Fuck off and support ‘Arry the twitcher you brain dead moron.

anon
anon
10 years ago

no: groundhog day; groundhog season. i keep saying it hoping something will change but it never will with wenger.

danny
danny
10 years ago

there will be no change , until wenger leaves

surely chris samba can do better then the clowns we have

BigL
BigL
10 years ago

I think it’s fair to say that Wenger has lost his way somewhat over the last few years. 10 years ago this conversation would have been impossible but look how far he has fallen.

I don’t blame the board, but I do blame Wenger. I’ll be a happy man when he goes and a new manager with some ambition is hired as his replacement.

arsenal4ever
arsenal4ever
10 years ago

@ Danish Gooner so “we” the fans have to show the board this enough!! Wenger and board needs to go. At least Mr. fukking PHW!!!

Dan
Dan
10 years ago

“Fuck off and support ‘Arry the twitcher you brain dead moron”

More intelligent debate from the AKB brigade.

Arsenal fan not Arsene fan.

ole
ole
10 years ago

“Pundits proclaim that this Arsenal team can no longer be accused to lacking experience, but what have they experienced? Van Persie and Cesc aside, no one in this team has ever won a trophy with Arsenal”.

That is true, but they should be the first out the door. They never play for afc, yet they make 90 k a week. Sell them and buy some experince from elswere, cesc is already gone and that is just as well, we do not need him, we lose to chelsea with or without him anyway. buy some big strong bone crusher intead.

arsenal4ever
arsenal4ever
10 years ago

you are the biggest kunt Harry Barracuda. Admit it, Wenger lost it. A GK and DM was badly needed and Song costed us today. So you should go and support the spuds AKB idiot!!

ewan
ewan
10 years ago

This article sums up clearly the state of Arsenal FC. Low expectation to winning. 4th place good enough. After all, we are making money -for the Board. What continue to surprise me is how contented the fans have become. The team is unrecognisable compared to 6 years ago.

wankerwenger
wankerwenger
10 years ago

Lets face it – Arsenal are just not good enough! They won’t even qualify for the Champions League this season – let alone ,make any sort of impression in the BPL. What excuse does Wenger have for a draw against Sunderland and a loss to WBA?? We lost 4 points in those games because of goalkeeping errors and a lack of effort. Wenger could have afforded to buy some real quality before the season – but was too stubborn to listen to the cries of fans all over the world. The question arises if we fans could be better managers… Read more »

spitfire
spitfire
10 years ago

Imo the main reason we’re not doing that good against the “big boys” is the fact that our injury department is always filled with our best players… imagine if we could have all of them available, I for one consider it as a big loss for us not to have players like RVP, Vermaelen, Fabregas in these big games…

Angry fan
Angry fan
10 years ago

Agree with this 100%. We will never win anything while we have some of those players playing today. I’ve been banging on for ages change is need. Maybe now our season is over…. Again that some more fans will start to realise we ain’t as good as we think we are

BigL
BigL
10 years ago

@Harry Barracuda: Yeah, I’m a brain dead moron that that wants Wenger out. But not based just on today’s performance but several years worth. I would say that you are the brain dead moron, why don’t you open your eyes and take a good hard look a the team? We are not good enough to win anything and won’t win jack as long as Wenger is more concerned with money than trophies. As for fucking off to support ‘arry’, well at least they have some ambition. So instead of telling REAL Arsenal fans who care a great deal about the… Read more »

Ed
Ed
10 years ago

Marouane Chamakh is a flop he doesnt show up when it count’s yet he’ll get to start all season yet the number’s dont look good for him..

Rakesh
Rakesh
10 years ago

I’m really really frustrated to see an under-strength Arsenal play a full strength top-4 team almost all the time for the last 3-4 seasons. Its kind of becoming a habit to see some of our most important first team players picking up injuries just before big games like this and completely handicapping us. I’m so frustrated now that i’m not even thinking straight, at this point of time I can’t help but consider the fact that our more-influential players sort of chicken out during big games like this. Deep down i know this is wrong, but i just have to… Read more »

WillyG
WillyG
10 years ago

AW should go to manchester city and make money for them. With their collossal losses, they need him more. Let somebody else get the trophies for us.

stevus
stevus
10 years ago

Nothing unexpected at all about today’s performance or the result. Groundhog Season – Year 6. All aboard the yawnathon for the procession towards 4th place, or maybe 3rd if Man U can’t pick themselves up. We are now just like the self-delusional “attractive” Spurs sides of the 80s and early 90s – that we so enjoyed mocking. It’s becoming so boring now that I don’t know if I care any more…and it’s taken me nearly 40 years to feel that way. Wholesale changes at this club are necessary, but won’t happen as long as the elderly bank manager on the… Read more »

farizizwan
farizizwan
10 years ago

Our player is too soft.

ArsenalTheWengerWay
ArsenalTheWengerWay
10 years ago

This is not sour grapes but if van persie was here….. Lethal. Van persie is a very aggresive forward and thats whats missing in arsnal, arshavin was key today, i really liked he’s play and he’s not afraid to shoot. Cech brilliantly saved most of the shots. Without fabregas Arsenal overplay, too many fancy touches, it irritates me that only arshavin seems to have that killer edge. I’m slowly getting fed up of supporting arsenal, i will always support them but in my heart i know that we won’t win anything without a consistently healthy lethal striker. WE need a… Read more »

Nesta
Nesta
10 years ago

There are 31 games left if we minus 12 points from those games since we will have another loss to chelsea 2 to manU and 1 away at mancity we will be working to achieve 81 points n we shud try to achieve maximum pts and by the way we had early injuries so when the goin gets tough we will have a full squad the problem with that is that Wegner wont sign anyone. Lets get real and know dat next week is another loss to mancity then life would be what we expected.

indo-gooner
indo-gooner
10 years ago

As predicted, but the game was really surprising me cause arsenal were playing so well actually. Draw should be fair result but quite happy with that performance though as long as we can get the consistency in the next next next games. Chamakh should improve his killing ability and should try to be more drogba who use his chances no matter how small that chance is. All arsenal players today deserve an applause from the gooners. Hope arsenal can win all the next games in a row and chelsea will get lose from any teams (who cares whose going to… Read more »

arsenal4ever
arsenal4ever
10 years ago

BIG L spot on!!

BigL
BigL
10 years ago

@stevus:

Mate I know exactly how you feel. I have gone from a huge Arsenal fan that lapped up everything Wenger said, I lived and breathed Arsenal even while I was asleep. Now, watching Arsenal makes me more angry than it does bring me joy. I can’t even watch an interview with Wenger any more because he makes my blood boil listening to his lame repetitive excuses.

brigi99jam
brigi99jam
10 years ago

Well written article by the author, and certainly not lacking in emotion after watching the match..it certainly felt like deja vu to me watching this match, versus the same fixture last year…What I will not agree with , is that we have the wrong strategy, we certainly do have the right strategy, and what I still feel is the only sustainable strategy…What I would ask of Arsene though, is to get it up the arses of persons playing on the field, who are not doing the dirty work, football needs some other things apart from the pretty football…Foul some people… Read more »

Rock
Rock
10 years ago

you lot really don’t get how fucked we’d be if wenger left.

arsenal4ever
arsenal4ever
10 years ago

Wengker already sees the positives and is happy with the players. FFS Song and some others arent good enough, fact!!! Song– 1 season wonder thats it!!!

DMF
DMF
10 years ago

*sound of babies crying* The players lack confidence, it’s as simple as that. They clearly don’t trust Fabianski, RVP and Cesc are the true team leaders and they’re missing. Wenger can only do so much – he can’t buy confidence. Drogba wasn’t always the machine he is today, he had to build his confidence. Same story with Henry. I agree the invincibles selloff probably robbed the youngsters of role models who understand how to win – but we’re better than we were last season. We can grind out wins and we can finesse wins. Chelsea is in their ROARING PRIME… Read more »

arsenal4ever
arsenal4ever
10 years ago

Wengker is just a fukking big lier!!! He would be better suited to politics!!!

wankerwenger
wankerwenger
10 years ago

Yes Wenger must go – somehow we have to get that message across to the Board. But the Board love this guy – he is making pots of money for them. He has lost it – the man has ZERO ambition. He knows that his managing career is in its twilight years. He is going to retire soon. So its no longer about winning for him. Its all about money – the more money he makes for the owners of the club – the more money he will make. The question is can we – the fans – make enough… Read more »

goonerbegood
10 years ago

THIS ARSENAL TEAM IS NOT GOOD ENOUGH TO WIN THE LEAGUE AND CHAMPIONS LEAGUE. THE QUESTIONS IS WHY: wenger has lost his way.he will never change,instead next week ,we will hear they have signed a 17 yr old from ….. :injury to our best players always seems to work …then they come back and go and play for their countries,then come back to arsenal injured ,until the end of season. :another issue is our best players with no’s 4..compare cesc to veira 8..compare ljungberg to nasri 7..compare pires to rosicky 10..compare v.persie(since he has been at arsenal he has never… Read more »

arsenal4ever
arsenal4ever
10 years ago

the AKB`s will say the same shit again. Like they waited already for more then 10 years for trophies and then Wenger came in. Wenger needed to go few years ago, but wait he got a payrise from the board. No ambition in this club!! Just developing young talent to sell to high prices. We are the Ajax with massive profits!! Time for a revolte!!!

WC
WC
10 years ago

While I don’t always agree with Arsene’s approach I’d love to know who would replace him. Have you seen Liveprool lately since everyone called for Rafa’s head? Woy is setting the EPL on fire isn’t he? Simply put there’s no good managers out there to be gotten – if there was Liverpool wouldn’t be sitting somewhere around the bottom of the table. I have no problems saying that Wenger needs to ask himself some questions but at this point in time he’s the best that we can get because any manager available now will either be extremely mediocre or unable… Read more »

Ooosh
Ooosh
10 years ago

If Van P has another injury hit season then I think he should be sold and replaced, spends more time on the table than on the pitch.

Does anyone agree ? I know hes top class but he never stays fit for any period of time.

arsenal4ever
arsenal4ever
10 years ago

@ wankerwenger. But they only making money cause we supporting them and buying merchandise!! I dont say we should stop supporting arsenal which I will never do but we need to show them ( the board ) we arent satisfied with just top 4 each year and I can see us getting out of the top 4 if we dont invest heavy in jan.

f4phantomphreak
f4phantomphreak
10 years ago

Look I know we are all pissed about todays results, but each and everyone of you are missing the point that we are ALL Arsenal fans and we ALL love this club!! Now that thats been said I agree that this team will not win dickall, and injured players cost us points… I know this sounds over done and all but all we can really do is support what we have until things change..

arsenal4ever
arsenal4ever
10 years ago

@ WC Moyes or Blanc for example. Someone with real hunger to win something!! Guardiola tough would be awesome imo.

BigL
BigL
10 years ago

@Rock:

you lot really don’t get how fucked we’d be if wenger left.

WHY? What is going to happen when Wenger leaves us?

Impossible
Impossible
10 years ago

We are probably the only club to do so well without key players. I think if we had van persie, fabregas and vermaelan we may have won it today. I think we’ll win the carling cup because we have enough to topple man utd imo.

arsenal4ever
arsenal4ever
10 years ago

@ Ooosh I would have sold him in last year already. He cant finish 30 games a season. Aguero or Dzeko for me!!! I would even love Forlan in my team!! 15-20 mill for the world cup best player is a bargain!!

arsenal4ever
arsenal4ever
10 years ago

yeah Rock defend the wanker!!!

Okey Onwuagha
Okey Onwuagha
10 years ago

The big question is when can Arsene Wenger raise a team that can beat the likes of Chelsea, ManU, Real, Barca and the list goes on. Watching them against Chelsea left me so pieced off. They ran like Mules but turned like Elephants. I seriously have my doubts that Arsene still has what it takes to win big games.

SG
SG
10 years ago

Did you see Song moved his body away from Alex’s freekick for the 2nd goal? Why was he so high up with the attack in the 1st half? Arsenal players too light weight compared to Chelsea’s.

Sam
Sam
10 years ago

It’s ok though. Cos come the end of the season when we have no trophys we can get all the team together on an open top bus and parade a large charity style cheque with £56 million emblazoned on it. Wenger pisses me off at the moment. I have tickets for the Birmingham game and it’s a good 5 hours from where I live. I hope it’s not a wasted journey. I have little or no faith in this team at the moment. Too many passengers. Only Nasri and wilshere and showing any fight. Same old problems not addressed by… Read more »

wankerwenger
wankerwenger
10 years ago

We need Jose Murhinio – someone who has pride in his work – hunger to win. Not a Board of Directors balls carrier.

SG
SG
10 years ago

Rock, if wenger leaves, the club will not close down. Just get another coach. There are some very good ones out there. Well, since you love wenger, we can still keep him as accounts manager.

arsenal4ever
arsenal4ever
10 years ago

no bad choice wankerwenger. But our fluid game will be gone, too. But playing nice and winning nothing is more shit so get him in and give RM WEnkger!!

maltese gooner
maltese gooner
10 years ago

we simply cannot go on like this. my god man utd have got debts of around 700 million and still compete year after year. We have got debts of around 250 million and we don,t invest in experienced players. we are arsenal, the real pride of london, with 13 leagues (chelsea are not even near us in this stat)won. WENGER NEEDS TO INVEST IN A COUPLE OF EXPERIENCED PLAYERS, otherwise i am seriously doubting if we are going to make it to the champion’s league neext season. despite a better performance today we are now 7 points behind chelsea and… Read more »

Ooosh
Ooosh
10 years ago

@arsenal4ever Totally agree, its not good enough. Big decisions need to be made about him and Walcott, hopefully Ill be proved wrong. Money needs to be spent just so we can stay at the same level or we’ll fall behind. I dont think this team is good enough, 2 defeats on the bounce, City next and though im sure Arsenal would be in a much better position if everyone one was fit; is that ever going to happen ? Dont think so.

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