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 Post subject: Has Wenger's tenure run it's course ?
PostPosted: Tue Apr 06, 2010 10:36 pm 
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As much as it pains me to say it, I feel that Arsene Wenger's tenure as manager of Arsenal Football Club has run it's course.

This is not a knee jerk reaction but is something that I have considered and watched over the last 2 years, and had hoped to have seen something to convince me that it was not at an end.

When you look at the big clubs that we have played in the big games over the last 2 seasons, we have failed to even provide a dent.

Man United (Champions League) Away - (Battered)
Man United (Champions League) Home - (Battered)
Man United League - Away - (Played Well - Deficiencies cost us)
Man United League - Home - (Battered)

Chelsea - FA Cup Semi Final - (Battered)
Chelsea League - Home - (Battered)
Chelsea League - Away - (Battered)

Barcelona - (Champions League) Home (Annihilated and Absolutely Battered even though we drew)
Barcelona - (Champions League) Away - (Battered)

Arsene Wenger now either seems incapable or unwilling to see and address our deficiencies.
We are not Strong enough up front as a squad.
We are not Strong enough in midfield either out wide or in the middle as a squad.
We are not strong enough in defence as a squad. Our 2 second choice centre-halfs are veterens.
We are not strong enough in the position of goalkeeper.

So many people can see this and if Wenger is unwilling to address this or does not realise this then, I am sorry but his tenure is at an end. It does pain me to say it because he has revolutionised the club, he has brought it to levels which I did not think possible (and maybe he is a victim of his own success).


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 Post subject: Re: Has Wengers's tenure run it's course ?
PostPosted: Tue Apr 06, 2010 10:44 pm 
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Its going to be the old chestnut again I think of do we want trophies or do we want a nice football team who "does things right". If its the former then Wenger has to answer for this, if its the latter then the accusations of anyone who supports the former is not a real supporter and should join the plastics will start. I look forward to this debate of which I shall join tomorrow... :twisted:


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 Post subject: Re: Has Wengers's tenure run it's course ?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 12:19 am 
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I'm sorry but Wenger is incredible and to suggest his tenure has run its course is ludicrous. NO, and I repeat, NO other manager on this other could have put this team in the position they're in now, with a brand new, beautiful stadium, stable finances and a team that is capable of challenging for both the league title and the Champions League.

This team had to be built from nothing, and Wenger has managed to incredible perfection. We are now in a situation where we have a very young, but very mature team, with a good balance of strength, techincaly ability and determination to do well for this team.

The club is oozes class, and although we may not be tasting success at this very moment, there are plenty of trophies to come over the next 20 years, and its because of one man, Arsene Wenger.


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 Post subject: Re: Has Wengers's tenure run it's course ?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 1:44 am 
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I feel immensly frustrated (I been using that word a lot) by Wenger with a lot of things. Fortunately, things like the emergence of Flamini, Song and other youth products, the status of the club now compared to before he came and the state of the clubs finances along with other positives has curbed my want for a new manager. I along with a lot of other fans can still see the "potential" of the club and what can be achieved.

I don't think we will win anything this season and haven't believed so all season. I do however think we can win something next year with a bit of spending (and if Sagna and Clichy...or any Arsenal player can deliver a decent cross). The crucial thing will be to keep the players together and go into next season with probably a new striker and, I hope and pray, a new center back. The key to that will be keeping Wenger.

How long can we keep going year on year with "nearly there" and "what if's" under Wenger? Personally, I'll give him until Arsenal begin to decline. We have improved from last year and if fringe players produce their potential, we can achieve great things.

I would love for Wenger to spend over the odds on a quality player, doesn't have to be a name, but if we picked up, for example another Vermaelan for twice the price we got Mark 1 for, I would still be over the moon. Will that happen? :roll: .....let's hope so.

Don't mean to go off topic but at the beginning of the season I think I heard Wenger say he would "go back to the drawing board" if we didn't win a trophy this season.....Has Wenger's squad run it's course?


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 Post subject: Re: Has Wengers's tenure run it's course ?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 6:10 am 
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I pretty much agree with Jay. It's getting into a very awkward position now. The reason why half these fans expect success is directly because of Wenger. However, year after year the same thing keeps happening, we don't compete and we keep getting outclassed by better teams. On top of that, we see were our problems are, but nothing happens. Every year i tell myself "don't worry, it's Arsene fucking Wenger, he's just building the squad." But i don't feel like that anymore. Honestly, I just want to see him build a squad that can compete, I don't want him to get sacked, but they are nowhere near as good as he thinks they are. 2-3 years ago was knee-jerk, now it's just frustration.


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 Post subject: Re: Has Wengers's tenure run it's course ?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 8:03 am 
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I shall mostly obstain from this discussion, given that I'm sure many others will hit upon the prescient points.

But, are those asking for Wenger's departure in actuality really asking for an Oligarch to buy the team? I think you are. I think you look at Chelsea, Man City, and Man United spend all this money and 30 Million Pound strikers on a whim, and I think you're envious.

We play the best brand of football in the league. We have done so at fraction of the cost compared to the $500 Million+ investments at other clubs. Our debt is coming down (which included Real Estate).

Our young players have truly developed: Song, Diaby, Bendtner, Nasri, and our Captain, of course.

Who would you replace him with? An Italian specialist? Mourinho?

Sigh... Anyway, I'm sure this will meander into a predictable discussion about our trophy drout, et al. Meanwhile Liverpool and Man United supporters stage protests every week; Chelsea and Man City exist purely on the whims of a Billionaire.


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 Post subject: Re: Has Wengers's tenure run it's course ?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 8:04 am 
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I get frustrated at Arsene too at times, but as JK said, Wenger has done a superb job to bring us into a new stadium whie keeping the finances healthy and the squad in the Champions League and challenging for honours. That is a great achievement, and suggesting he should go just because we haven't won a trophy is dismissing it out of hand.

I also think it is unfair to compare last night's defeat to previous losses to United and Chelsea - we were missing arguably our five best players last night, and the entire spine of our team.

Jay, I disagree with about some of your views on the squad - I think we are mostly strong enough in the midfield and attack. In the centore of midfield Song is blossoming in to a top class defensive midfielder and then we've got Cesc, Nasri, Ramsey and an improving albeit inconsistent Diaby to choose from. Out wide: Rosicky, Nasri, Arshavin, Walcott, Vela. Spearhead: Van Persie and Bendtner. That's wealth of attacking talent. I'd like to see us add one striker, but that's it really.

Admittedly we need to bolster the central of defence, and need a new goalkeeper. The squad has taken big steps forward this season. I think the most IMPORTANT thing is that Song, Diaby and Eboue - three players that were slagged off by fans and looked like they were going nowhere - have all, to different extents, shown signs of improvement and becoming quality players. I think this, to an extent, vindicates Wenger. The team is improving and has made big steps forward this season - to kill the project now would be reckless.


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 Post subject: Re: Has Wengers's tenure run it's course ?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 8:06 am 
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-Jk- wrote:
I'm sorry but Wenger is incredible and to suggest his tenure has run its course is ludicrous. NO, and I repeat, NO other manager on this other could have put this team in the position they're in now, with a brand new, beautiful stadium, stable finances and a team that is capable of challenging for both the league title and the Champions League.

This team had to be built from nothing, and Wenger has managed to incredible perfection. We are now in a situation where we have a very young, but very mature team, with a good balance of strength, techincaly ability and determination to do well for this team.

The club is oozes class, and although we may not be tasting success at this very moment, there are plenty of trophies to come over the next 20 years, and its because of one man, Arsene Wenger.


I agree with everything -Jk- says here. We are a class club with a brand-new stadium, a squad with many excellent players and even more very promising ones (there are some that need to replaced as well, let's be clear about that) and, I would put a lot of weight on this, financially we are in a very good position as well.

Is there any other manager out there that would do better at Arsenal? Look at the two clubs better than us in the Premier League, Man Utd and Chelsea. Ferguson is a brilliant manager as well, but guys like him and Wenger are absolute rarities, they don't knock on your door and ask for a job. Besides that, financially Man Utd are in absolute shambles. Yes, they have hammered us most of the times we met them, but I would never, ever want to be in their position. Some of the guys of the Green and Gold-movement may actually agree that it's us being in an enviable position and not them. The other team that seems to be clearly better than us is Chelsea. Ancelotti is a very good manager as well. He is not in the Ferguson/Wenger class for me, but still. However, if he doesn't please the owner of the club, he gets the sack, simple as that. The club is owned by one man, who has come onto the scene a couple of years ago and is now deciding the fate of Chelsea FC. Again, I don't want to trade their success with the situation they are in, not for one second. There are two clubs in England better than us, both have very good managers as well, but I don't envy one of them.

Across Europe there are a couple of more teams I wouldn't fancy us against. I don't know them good enough to know whether I really envy them for their success. Barcelona, yes, but they are one of a kind, they make every other team in the world look pale. Real Madrid? No thanks, I prefer my club to live within it's means and pursuit a relatively conservative financial policy.

It is indeed time to win something for Wenger, he has said it himself at the beginning of the season. "No excuses, the team should be ready and deliver now." But I can wait five more years without trophies without questioning the model/policy Wenger has employed. Tubzinho has mentioned the dichotomy of trophies vs. nice football and doing things right, and should this dichotomy really exist I'll take the latter any time of the day. It doesn't exist though, I believe you can win things with nice football and doing things right. Maybe we have to be more patient than others, then so be it. Give me Wenger (or, to be more clear, the sustainable policy he pursuits) over trophies anytime.

It's a blessing to have a manager like him, five trophyless years or not.


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 Post subject: Re: Has Wengers's tenure run it's course ?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 8:07 am 
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Of course every fan has a right to be frustrated... but what makes you think that Wengers successor would do any better? Arsenal can't compete for the players with huge clubs, the biggest and most expensive stars are always going to Real, Barca, Chelsea, ManU, Man City (now that they're suddenly rich) AC Milan etc. Hell, even Bayern Munich is wealthier a club than Arsenal and pays 20-30 million pound transfer fees. Just face the facts, guys: Arsenal is where it's supposed to be at the moment: 3rd or 4th in EPL. Anything above that is over-achieving considering the amount of money Wenger has had to spend. I would love to see the manager who leads Arsenal to EPL or UCL title with the current financial state of the club. We're on par with the likes of Spurs and Villa when it comes to transfer funds, and where are they? Not in the title race I can tell you.


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 Post subject: Re: Has Wengers's tenure run it's course ?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 8:09 am 
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AdmiringArsene wrote:
Sigh... Anyway, I'm sure this will meander into a predictable discussion about our trophy drout, et al. Meanwhile Liverpool and Man United supporters stage protests every week; Chelsea and Man City exist purely on the whims of a Billionaire.


Exactly.

And another point I want to touch on:

Jeff Justice wrote:
I would love for Wenger to spend over the odds on a quality player, doesn't have to be a name, but if we picked up, for example another Vermaelan for twice the price we got Mark 1 for, I would still be over the moon. Will that happen? :roll: .....let's hope so.


Why is this so unlikely? Basically Vermaelen was already Mark 2 because he was just another Sagna. I don't see why Wenger shouldn't be able to find another player for the right price to slot in right from the start and do well. Add to that another player doing a Song and seriously stepping up - no idea who - maybe Diaby performing more consistent and Chamakh coming in and we have at least three more quality players in our squad. I don't want to start another discussion about squad policy and squad depth, but it's not unlikely for Wenger to pull off another Vermaelen. If that's what your verdict depends on.


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 Post subject: Re: Has Wengers's tenure run it's course ?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 8:24 am 
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-Jk- wrote:
This team had to be built from nothing, and Wenger has managed to incredible perfection. We are now in a situation where we have a very young, but very mature team, with a good balance of strength, techincaly ability and determination to do well for this team.


When you say incredible perfection jk, do you mean by definition of what you have said afterwards or are there other factors as well that come into that statement. I ask because I disagree with the latter statement as the balance is not right in the squad and hasn't been for a while.


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 Post subject: Re: Has Wengers's tenure run it's course ?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 9:05 am 
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I would love Wenger to prioritise a centre back and a decent keeper in the summer. He is obviously slightly blinded with his choice of transfers and his insistence that we have 3 world class keepers is farcical.

But nobody on this planet would be able to keep the club in the top 4 without spending a fortune and jepordising he club. If we want instant success we should sell our souls, however we haven't got a sugar daddy and I don't want one either.

We also have to consider these demorilisiung defeats in perspective:

barcelona - obviously worlds greatest team at the moment and hot favourites to be the first team to retain the champions league. We are talking once in a generation quality team here.

Man Utd/Chelsea: Financed by incredible debt, allowing an overinflated and ridiculously assembled squad that both teams need freshening up if not replacing in large parts next season.


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 Post subject: Re: Has Wengers's tenure run it's course ?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 9:28 am 
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Of course we need success. Of course we need to win trophies. The past has nothing to do with this. Arsenal is not a one-year wonder club. Arsenal is not a club that somehow did the unbeaten season, but then settled down to its natural place. Arsenal's identity now is a trophy-winning club and everything, from the discourse, to the management, to the economic decisions, is driven by this definition. The argument that Wenger has 'spoiled' the fans simply has zero relevance here.

Everyone can see that unbelievable injury crises year after year after year have robbed us - without that we would have the 07-08 Premier League title in the bag, no question, and we could well have got away with the 05-06 Champions League title. Robin Van Persie fit and we'd also have this year's title. Wouldn't be a terribly bad spell, the last 6 years, with that in mind. At the same time, though, I think we have on numerous occasions overperformed, done better than perhaps we should have with such a thin squad full of mediocre players given too many chances by Wenger. Diaby seems to have come good, Almunia got a bit better (sort of), Song has proven himself, etc., but could we afford to give so many players such long periods of practice at the same time? Probably not. Wenger *is* to blame for pulling us just short of the right stuff year after year.

At the same time, is it time for Wenger to go? A resounding no for me. Forget history or gratitude or anything - I simply believe were Wenger to leave, we'd be in for at least 3 or 4 years of recovery where results will at best be similar, and at worst be worse. Instability. Players like Cesc leaving for Barca. Doubt. I think it's best to wait until Wenger can leave on a high - maybe in a couple years' time. We were very close in 07-08, we are very close now. I genuinely believe that the team have been getting better, and we can get that successful, major trophy winning season if not now, then within the next two years. If we can do that, then it'll be a good way to do transition.


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 Post subject: Re: Has Wengers's tenure run it's course ?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 10:59 am 
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Jules wrote:
AdmiringArsene wrote:
Sigh... Anyway, I'm sure this will meander into a predictable discussion about our trophy drout, et al. Meanwhile Liverpool and Man United supporters stage protests every week; Chelsea and Man City exist purely on the whims of a Billionaire.


Exactly.

And another point I want to touch on:

Jeff Justice wrote:
I would love for Wenger to spend over the odds on a quality player, doesn't have to be a name, but if we picked up, for example another Vermaelan for twice the price we got Mark 1 for, I would still be over the moon. Will that happen? :roll: .....let's hope so.


Why is this so unlikely? Basically Vermaelen was already Mark 2 because he was just another Sagna. I don't see why Wenger shouldn't be able to find another player for the right price to slot in right from the start and do well...........I don't want to start another discussion about squad policy and squad depth, but it's not unlikely for Wenger to pull off another Vermaelen. If that's what your verdict depends on.


I think this right here is the crux of any discussion about Wenger leaving. I think Arsenal could be top of the pile if we were to change philosophy and really spend the kind of money that is necessary these days to have a world class team (and squad). There's no two ways about it, to be able to be toe to toe with teams like Chelsea, Man U, the Milan sides, Madrid, Barca, et al., there simply have to be financial resources in relative abundance. That said, Arsenal cannot afford this - literally. There simply isn't any money there for us to play these other clubs at their game, unless we were to finance this renaissance with even more borrowed funds. This latter suggestion is untenable in my view. Getting in players like Vermaelen when we did, at the price we paid is what sees Wenger being regarded as among the world's top managers.

So, where does that leave us? With the kinds of money that we are able to spend presently (and been able to spend for a while), we are operating near the top of our potential. The upside is that there IS more upside to the players that Wenger brought in. Even seemingly experienced pros like Sagna and Vermaelen have some room (and time) for further improvement. Others like Song, Diaby, Cesc (if we can keep him), Bendtner, Clichy and others still have, arguably, their best years ahead of them.

Us keeping hold of Wenger has nothing to do with nostalgia, in my view. It is just plain common sense, and a business necessity. I don't think any other top manager in the world could have brought us through the wilderness in much the same way as Arsene Wenger has in the last 5 years. If anything, they'd be like Benitez and continuously moan about how little money had been made available to spend on the squad. I quite honestly believe that there has been a hell of a lot more going on behind closed doors than we have been made aware. I would love Wenger to release a tell-all memoir when he's done and maybe then we could get an appreciation for what he has actually done.

I think the club can be debt-free in a few years. I'd love to know the exact numbers based on their financial plan. At that point, I think any manager worth his salt could take over and have a more straightforward job - manage the footballing resources. Wenger is one of the few managers who have realized the intricate balancing act between doing what is best for the football and doing what is best for the survival of the football club. Managers like Benitez and Redknapp sit way on the other side.

Conclusion: We cannot afford to be rid of Arsène Wenger just yet. Whilst another manager would bring a change of philosophy that might net us some trophies and short-term successes, there's no guarantee that the long-term stability of Arsenal Football Club will be maintained. Moreover, if one takes a wider view, even though the current incarnation of the Premier League is only 17/18 years, there has been top flight football in England for over a century. Arsenal has been involved, in one way or another, for the vast majority of this period of time. I don't think we can take for granted our place in this elite for another 20 or 50 years. When I remember being younger and only getting bits and pieces of reports of English football, some names stuck with me: Queen's Park Rangers, Leicester City, Sheffield Wednesday, Nottingham Forest, Ipswich. These are clubs who are now stuck in the lower tiers of club football and, with the level of income that the top teams now command, look set to stay there. That is, unless some billionaire come and gives them a boost. Arsenal have been there, or thereabouts, throughout its history.

I don't want or need Wenger to stay here forever but, if he can bring us through this period (which I maintain is probably a lot more challenging than meets the eye), then he won't have to. We'll be fine.


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 Post subject: Re: Has Wengers's tenure run it's course ?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 11:33 am 
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Tubzinho wrote:
-Jk- wrote:
This team had to be built from nothing, and Wenger has managed to incredible perfection. We are now in a situation where we have a very young, but very mature team, with a good balance of strength, techincaly ability and determination to do well for this team.


When you say incredible perfection jk, do you mean by definition of what you have said afterwards or are there other factors as well that come into that statement. I ask because I disagree with the latter statement as the balance is not right in the squad and hasn't been for a while.


Not really sure, I'd had a few bevs by the time I'd written it.

What I think I meant is just the way he conducts himself in the media, the way he keeps up squad confidence in such a young team, I think these mental attributes are underestimated sometimes. Ok there are small tweaks that need to be made to the current squad, but that is inevitable in any team, and for a different topic really.


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