Archive for December, 2012

AFC are on the brink, but in my honest opinion, not of failure, but of success. I know it’s hard to see it now, but please bear with me.

I have turned slightly negative lately, to be fair there is no reason why most shouldn’t, but in the darkest hour, I had an epiphany. Things are not as bad as they seem and they can only get better from here.

Let’s look at why Gooners have a reason to rejoice this holiday season.

Fixture Schedule

Although Arsenal blew their chance with a last-minute implosion versus Swansea, we don’t have a tough match until January 13th versus Citeh. If the Gunners take care of business in the next two matches as they should, they’ll hit the midway point with 33 points. After the poor displays of late, that’s only 2 points off the 70 pt pace AFC had last year. Given the widespread notion that reinforcements will come and the fact that every week the talented players that ARE at AFC will gel, the results are likely to get better, not worse; the fixture schedule sets up nicely for us to prove that out.

Recent Results

Although us as Gooners have been disappointed by the squad, the recent bad results highlighted the fact that AFC need reinforcements in two clear areas. Defensive midfielder and Striker. The issue is this. Does AFC sign Theo to the contract he wants and promise his time in the middle of the pitch or does AFC resign to let him go and bring in creators like Adrian that are used to playing for a central striker. That is a question that will be answered in January. Does Giroud get a fox in the box to play off his good hold up play, or is that fox in the box Theo? These are all things that have been asked and likely answered due to the outrage of the recent results. Last year it was the Utd result and early, this year it may have been the Bradford result and closer to mid-year. A clear lack of steel in the middle is also one that no one can deny, and look for that to be a talking point inside and out of the club as well. There are many candidates, the question will continue to be asked as it’s obvious there aren’t enough healthy bodies at the club to fill that role, and poor Arteta is being sacrificed there. The recent results will help that discussion be the first topic of interest once the window opens in my opinion.

Consistency

Arsene isn’t going anywhere. He is too good at what he does for the board to go with anyone else. He continues to find talent for cheap and sell for high whilst maintaining AFC in the top four and always taking the blame. Don’t get me wrong, he has plenty of blame that deserves to come his way, but he also has a lot of credit. Arsene won’t want to leave when AFC is in this condition and the recent results may well give him the transfer funds and mandate to do what is needed and fill the holes at AFC. The truth is this, although his ideas have gotten stale and there have been issues with his choices lately, when Arsene has been given a chance to spend, he has done so. The Invincibles are the proof of that. He is a consistent figurehead for the club, players coming to AFC know there won’t be a carousel of managers in and out of the club.

Aside from the manager position, the players will gel at some point, and this squad is much too talented not to start pulling of a string of results as they should. A look at position by position at the actual best starting XI will prove out that statement. There is a long way to go and many things to figure out yet, but as the weeks go by, the likelihood of that happening becomes greater, not worse. There are many things to look forward to from this club and any additions as likely to enhance the enthusiasm and camaraderie not deter from it.

Conclusion

Arsenal have a long way to go yet. The fact of the matter is, what is written here has a lot of moving parts, but I believe they will line up when it matters most. The recent results, coupled with the fixture schedule and consistency taken into account will lead AFC to the brink, of succeeding when most have given up already. Look for the Gunners to come out of this holiday season in the top four and with the cash in hand to make a run that will propel AFC for some years to come. The team is a good mix of youth and experience, and hopefully the steel and reinforcements will be added to shore up the holes. It won’t be an easy task, but one that can take this team from an also-ran, to a definitive competitor for years to come. All that’s needed is a little luck, a little consistency and a lot of action.

We as Gooners will do our part, support. I think from what we’ve seen and heard in the last few weeks AFC from top to bottom is ready to do theirs.

COYG.

Edit

This entry was originally published on arsenalvision.co.uk . Since then, the Gunners extended the contracts of the “famous 5” and have had the look of a club on the hunt of a true fox in the box. All of this just further reinforces my view that the club is on the brink of turning the tide. Time will tell, but I see a bright future for AFC even after some dark patches that even the most staunch supporter found hard to digest.

On to Wigan and 3 points today! COYG!

Arsenal are at that point everyone loves to talk about in the future. You know the one!

“I remember back in 2012 when we were sitting 5 points off 4th and everyone was so negative, the team was under-performing, everyone wanted Wenger out and it looked like there was no way forward, then…”

How does this end? I don’t know, you don’t know. People that are so-called experts have been calling for AFC’s demise year after year since 07, so they surely don’t know.

The one thing that is glaringly obvious is that what happens in the next 3 weeks in the league and in the month of January will send Arsenal teetering over the edge into an abyss that we’ve not seen in 16+ years since Wenger’s arrival or it’ll be a comeback that by now everyone should be used to as it’s happened on various occasions.

I would love to sit here and say that Arsenal will gel in time and get reinforcements in January and everything will be perfect, but I just don’t know anymore. I don’t know if it’s Wenger that’s gotten senile. I don’t know if it’s the board that’s kept funds from him all these years. We don’t know if the players all of us think are great just aren’t so great. Arsenal are at a crossroads where big teams do one thing; FIX the problems! But alas this is Arsenal and we’ve not shown that the glaring problems will be addressed at any point.

This lackadaisical attitude of just believing in AW being enough to get through these times has eroded into resentment. There is a segment of the fan-base that HATES the boss. The lot of us all seem to be in agreement over one thing though, at the very least, and that’s the opinion that Kroenke needs to sell his shares as he’s doing nothing for the club at present time.

Arsenal have a beautiful stadium, a wonderful youth set-up, up and coming talent with experience and top-notch talent sprinkled in, but it isn’t enough! Arsenal simply need more…desire, urgency, motivation, bodies, talent, etc. take your pick, it’s all needed. Nothing less than a swift kick in the arse, a sharp up-turn in performances, and solid investments in January will do. If those things don’t happen, buckle up, because between the tarnished supporters, the media and the usually docile supporters that will eventually turn, it’s going to be a bumpy ride down into the abyss…no true Gooner wants that.

So here’s to hoping the club act as they should and the players react as they CAN…next up Brom. Get it going lads!

COYG! ATID.

 

Let’s play a game…

Perception – We stink because of Wenger. Wenger did this to us.

Reality – We are here because of greedy individuals using our team to fill their pockets, in effect selling their shares to those that care less about the club and more about what it adds to their portfolio. Wenger has done what he can with what he’s been given and taking the lion’s share of the blame unjustly.

Perception – Wenger is a greedy, cheap bastard. We are in this situation because of his unwillingness to spend.

Reality – Look at 96-05 when given a proper budget. Wenger spent and he won. Look at 06-till now. He’s been handcuffed and lucky to have pulled many rabbits out of many hats.

Perception – Firing Wenger is the only way to go forward.

Reality – Firing Wenger won’t solve shit if the board don’t change their philosophy.

Perception – Spending is the only way to go forward.

Reality – Spending money won’t solve anything if Wenger doesn’t start motivating the players he’s got.

Perception – The players are not performing, they are not up to AFC standards.

Reality – The players are not performing, they are talented but unmotivated.

Perception – Change will propel us forward.

Reality – Change WILL propel us forward, but there are many moving parts and will they get on the same page at the same time?

Only time will tell. But I do know this. Absolute power corrupts absolutely…do we know the full story? Nope. Has AW lost his way in these seven years he’s been asked to settle? Absolutely.

EOM.

COYG – ATID