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Senegal's Arsenal Thread 2015/16

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You're right to say it is wrong to consider onfield success and trophies the only measure of success' date=' but you've gone too far the other way. Bit silly to call us an elite club. We're a big club, but until we start winning the league again we're a big club in the same way Liverpool are a big club.[/quote']

We are bigger than Liverpool. Signing Ozil and Alexis showed that. That we were able to sign players of that calibre and reputation separates us from teams like Liverpool.

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Oh come on. Arsene Wenger has been a much better manager for Arsenal than George Graham.

He's failed massively over the past 2 years or so, but everything before that was either good or great from Wenger.

Wenger has been a much better manager for Arsenal than Graham. You'd have to be obtuse to only measure success in trophies and on the pitch success. It should be clear to everyone that he has transformed the club from a big name which has been quite successful into one of the elite clubs in this country and Europe (ish). Only two clubs have managed that without billionaire owners- Man U and us. It is revisionism of the extreme to not see that Wenger has been an incredible manager for this club even if at times his on the pitch successes have either been over stated or not immediately apparent to the eye.

Not sure how it can be the case that Arsenal as a club will be happy with this season. I mean if even the most ardent pro-Wenger people are annoyed by it then it is a big leap to suggest the club is so myopic it won't also be very disappointed with this season whether we finish second, fourth or fifth.

Arsenal's problems are pretty clear cut really. We are a bad team. We have a very good squad one of the best in the league if not the best. Wenger however isn't putting them into a position to succeed. Whether it be from the inexplicable approach to building play (Coquelin and Gabriel, really?), to missing our most obvious need (DM??), to not building a squad from which he can pick teams which can function together within his style of play, it is a real mess. There have always been flaws with Wenger's style of management much like there is with nearly every manager however now his judgement calls tend to be wrong in a quite obvious fashion.

He will in all likelihood still be manager next season as the club aren't going to push him though they perhaps should. There aren't any obvious candidates available any more and unless this season really falls apart he won't resign.

The last two seasons have been no better or worse than the preceding 8 seasons, flirting with title runs but ultimately found wanting in the league & as a rule also found wanting in Europe?

Unfortunately we're unable to compare European records because it was too different & there is of course the English club ban to consider.

Edit: Arsene has done great thinks for the club but to say the modernisation is all his doing is probably being a bit unfair on David Dein, could be a coincidence that ceased being consistently serious challengers for major honours after he stepped down from his active involvement.

We are bigger than Liverpool. Signing Ozil and Alexis showed that. That we were able to sign players of that calibre and reputation separates us from teams like Liverpool.
I think that dynamic might change next season, players like winning managers & Klopp probably has a higher standing in the game than Wenger, players will also talk to other players, would be interesting to know what Sanchez & Özil really say about Arsenal & Wenger to their friends in football.

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The last two seasons have been no better or worse than the preceding 8 seasons, flirting with title runs but ultimately found wanting in the league & as a rule also found wanting in Europe?

Unfortunately we're unable to compare European records because it was too different & there is of course the English club ban to consider.

Edit: Arsene has done great thinks for the club but to say the modernisation is all his doing is probably being a bit unfair on David Dein, could be a coincidence that ceased being consistently serious challengers for major honours after he stepped down from his active involvement.

The last two seasons have been worse because quite simply we have had a lot more money to spend.

Dein left during 06/07 which was a truly dreadful season. We hit a decline due to a lack of funds rather than due to Dein leaving.

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I thought he left the season after the last title, that'll teach me for not going to wiki first.

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Dein himself credits Wenger extensively with the modernisation. Our decline coincided with having to pay for the stadium with low value sponsorship deals. Graham never had to deal with those sort of financial restrictions. We weren't just deciding not to spend £30million each summer and be happy with 4th. There were serious financial restrictions, it is hardly a surprise that we received new sponsorship deals, or were close to them, and we spent big. Some of Wenger's best work came with that Fabregas team.

On Liverpool/Arsenal thing I am not overly convinced if Klopp will make that much difference as ultimately players will move for money and location as well. If they believe Arsenal will decline and fall off the cliff and Liverpool will rise to the top then that changes but not sure many players will be particularly confident in saying that, yet. By all accounts Ozil and Alexis are very happy, in particular the former. May change if we fall outside of the top 4 but the rumours suggest contract negotiations with Ozil are fine. They are just rumours though.

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Well yeah :D

Also made his squad substantially worse through ineptitude

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I don't think our squad is getting worse, which makes our failures all the more frustrating.

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Our squad has improved a lot over the last 4 seasons. Big part of the anger currently

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Yeah the big issue is that we have the players, the money, the resources that we never had during the poverty years - yet this season we've bottled the title which a poverty club are going to win :D

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Not sure we have even bottled it. We just weren't good enough despite having superior players and resources than the teams above us.

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We were top of the league on New Year's. I'd say we've massively bottled it since then to allow Leicester to gain the amount of points they have on us, despite gaining 3 points by beating them ourselves.

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Not sure we have even bottled it. We just weren't good enough despite having superior players and resources than the teams above us.

With Chelsea, Man City & Man Utd all having issues the title was there for the taking, in fact there was a guard of honour waiting to help you see out the second half of the season. Even by your usual standards the choke this season has been impressive.

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I think the flaws of the team (lack of viable CM pairings and lack of balance in the three behind the striker) have come together to hurt us. We entered the season with one line up which worked, those players became injured and funnily enough it all fell apart. That is not being good enough. This wasn't a mental weakness really, just us being a poor team.

It may look like a choke but it isn't. We weren't a good team which were then scared of getting across the line or performing. There hasn't been a mental collapse. We have just fallen to the level we are at.

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hmm i'm not so sure, everyone seemed far more confident on the ball during the first half of the season from the game i saw. it's a pity Arsene hasn't got one last Prem title, Leicester heroics aside, it would have been nice to see

also 2.05 pts per game in the first 19 down to 1.50 since is massive, regardless of how many injuries you have.

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I've not read the last page in length but any idea that George Graham matched Arsene Wenger is completely preposterous. My concern is that Wenger is going to hang on too long and potentially reduce his status as a legendary figure of the club's history.

I've said it many times already this season - we need a change even if it means a few years of relative struggle. The Invincibles were a group of self-motivators but this lot aren't and Wenger doesn't seem to be able to motivate them to achieve what they should be capable of.

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I don't think you can say Wenger has been improving the squad AND say that it wasn't a choke this season. The two are mutually exclusive.

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I've not read the last page in length but any idea that George Graham matched Arsene Wenger is completely preposterous. My concern is that Wenger is going to hang on too long and potentially reduce his status as a legendary figure of the club's history.

I've said it many times already this season - we need a change even if it means a few years of relative struggle. The Invincibles were a group of self-motivators but this lot aren't and Wenger doesn't seem to be able to motivate them to achieve what they should be capable of.

I was being liberal with that one but Wenger gets too much of a free pass for what is perceived as a great managerial career when in all honesty it very much front loaded when there was only one other show in town (Man Utd) & the last decade has been par, okay, adequate or any other middle of the road adjective & then his direct trophy comparison isn't much better & in 30 years the record books will only show the trophies because nobody will care that he kept finishing 3rd of 4th while nurturing talent that by & large went on to win nothing, in fact his ability to develop young players is starting to become a bit of a myth too.

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hmm i'm not so sure, everyone seemed far more confident on the ball during the first half of the season from the game i saw. it's a pity Arsene hasn't got one last Prem title, Leicester heroics aside, it would have been nice to see

also 2.05 pts per game in the first 19 down to 1.50 since is massive, regardless of how many injuries you have.

When Arsenal entered the season they had two CM partnerships which worked: Arteta and Ramsey; Cazorla and Coquelin. Problem with both of those is the first relies on Arteta who is permanently injured and declining, the second is flawed for reasons set out at length by some people here. We also had only one three behind the striker set up which worked: Ramsey-Ozil-Alexis. Obviously Alexis and Ozil always play but the third player has to be more of a CM, someone who plays quite centrally and helps out in possession. Wenger teams have always required that. Ramsey, Wilshere, Cazorla and possibly Chamberlain were the only players who fitted that brief. Wilshere is obviously always injured, Cazorla was at CM and Chamberlain is a project so that leaves Ramsey who is also prone to injuries. Get to the end of autumn, Coquelin and Cazorla become injured. Leaving Flamini who is one of the worst players in his position in the league starting. It also meant we had not one fit player who could take the ball from the back and without Ramsey on the wing the balance in the three behind the striker was hit and miss.

Whilst we started the season well the lack of appropriate options, within the Wenger system, in two key positions scuppered us. This was compounded by a lack of structure to ensure Flamini isn't too exposed or Joel Campbell knew where to stand to give the team optimal balance. Currently we are better balanced as Iwobi is that central player but the CM situation remains a mess. Coquelin is a distinctly average footballer and whilst Elneny can take the ball from the back to just have him doing it is ineffective, as his passing is limited. On top of this our passing from deep is worsened by having Gabriel who just isn't very confident on the ball. Our defence is also more vulnerable now because Gabriel is rash and inexperienced.

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I don't think you can say Wenger has been improving the squad AND say that it wasn't a choke this season. The two are mutually exclusive.

Really struggle to see how they are in anyway mutually exclusive. Not that it really matters

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I was being liberal with that one but Wenger gets too much of a free pass for what is perceived as a great managerial career when in all honesty it very much front loaded when there was only one other show in town (Man Utd) & the last decade has been par, okay, adequate or any other middle of the road adjective & then his direct trophy comparison isn't much better & in 30 years the record books will only show the trophies because nobody will care that he kept finishing 3rd of 4th while nurturing talent that by & large went on to win nothing, in fact his ability to develop young players is starting to become a bit of a myth too.

It wasn't front loaded. Your measures of success are simplistic. Wenger did very well up till 2011. He made errors with that team but he was doing a good job in reasonably difficult circumstances. He managed to keep Arsenal in the top 4 and competitive whilst making a profit on transfers, this enabled Arsenal to build the stadium and not fall apart. More trophies should have been won in that period but just because none were won doesn't mean it was a failure or average from him.

Willingness to give young players a chance? Definitely inaccurate these days. Ability to nurture? Not a myth really.

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Really struggle to see how they are in anyway mutually exclusive. Not that it really matters

Well if you only have a couple of line ups that work and they involve players that are often crocked, that's not exactly a good squad is it?

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Well if you only have a couple of line ups that work and they involve players that are often crocked, that's not exactly a good squad is it?

The squad is very good for player quality. The squad isn't good for how Wenger manages and plays his teams. If you gave it to say Martinez (another rightly maligned manager) he probably wouldn't have some of the same problems in relation to the CM pairing as he has more structure in that part of the game.

If you had Drinkwater and Kante instead would you win the league

Probably not. They work well in Leicester's system as a pair. Probably not as effective at Arsenal where possession is emphasised more amongst other differences.

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When Arsenal entered the season they had two CM partnerships which worked: Arteta and Ramsey; Cazorla and Coquelin. Problem with both of those is the first relies on Arteta who is permanently injured and declining, the second is flawed for reasons set out at length by some people here. We also had only one three behind the striker set up which worked: Ramsey-Ozil-Alexis. Obviously Alexis and Ozil always play but the third player has to be more of a CM, someone who plays quite centrally and helps out in possession. Wenger teams have always required that. Ramsey, Wilshere, Cazorla and possibly Chamberlain were the only players who fitted that brief. Wilshere is obviously always injured, Cazorla was at CM and Chamberlain is a project so that leaves Ramsey who is also prone to injuries. Get to the end of autumn, Coquelin and Cazorla become injured. Leaving Flamini who is one of the worst players in his position in the league starting. It also meant we had not one fit player who could take the ball from the back and without Ramsey on the wing the balance in the three behind the striker was hit and miss.

Whilst we started the season well the lack of appropriate options, within the Wenger system, in two key positions scuppered us. This was compounded by a lack of structure to ensure Flamini isn't too exposed or Joel Campbell knew where to stand to give the team optimal balance. Currently we are better balanced as Iwobi is that central player but the CM situation remains a mess. Coquelin is a distinctly average footballer and whilst Elneny can take the ball from the back to just have him doing it is ineffective, as his passing is limited. On top of this our passing from deep is worsened by having Gabriel who just isn't very confident on the ball. Our defence is also more vulnerable now because Gabriel is rash and inexperienced.

This is excellent

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Btw lads, if we let Arteta go to Spurs then I'm burning the stadium down

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It wasn't front loaded. Your measures of success are simplistic. Wenger did very well up till 2011. He made errors with that team but he was doing a good job in reasonably difficult circumstances. He managed to keep Arsenal in the top 4 and competitive whilst making a profit on transfers, this enabled Arsenal to build the stadium and not fall apart. More trophies should have been won in that period but just because none were won doesn't mean it was a failure or average from him.

Willingness to give young players a chance? Definitely inaccurate these days. Ability to nurture? Not a myth really.

Success has one measure;, winning trophies, anything else is not sporting success. What you've described is a successful businessman not a successful football coach or manager.

The players he had post Highbury were not also rans that he managed to overachieve with which you seem to be suggesting was the case & that he was dealt an unfair hand, a hand he dealt himself btw.

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Success has one measure;, winning trophies, anything else is not sporting success. What you've described is a successful businessman not a successful football coach or manager. The players he had post Highbury were not also rans that he managed to overachieve with.

By your measure nearly every football club fails and only a few can succeed. Seems rather unfair given how important money is to success

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Success has one measure;, winning trophies, anything else is not sporting success. What you've described is a successful businessman not a successful football coach or manager.

The players he had post Highbury were not also rans that he managed to overachieve with which you seem to be suggesting was the case & that he was dealt an unfair hand, a hand he dealt himself btw.

So have West Ham not been successful this season then? What about Spurs?

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Success has one measure;, winning trophies, anything else is not sporting success. What you've described is a successful businessman not a successful football coach or manager.

The players he had post Highbury were not also rans that he managed to overachieve with which you seem to be suggesting was the case & that he was dealt an unfair hand, a hand he dealt himself btw.

That's not particularly fair. Success is surely always put in context. If Leicester finishes 2nd this year, they'd still be considered a massive success wouldn't they?

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By your measure nearly every football club fails and only a few can succeed. Seems rather unfair given how important money is to success

It is unfair, but you don't make it fair by pretending otherwise. This is why what Leicester is doing is such an incredible achievement.

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So have West Ham not been successful this season then? What about Spurs?

Different context & you know that, I probably should have been clear on the context of success for a club like Arsenal.

tbh Wenger's biggest failing was falling head over heals in love with what Barcelona were doing in the late 2000's when given is style up to then he probably should have been looking more closely at what was going on in SW Germany & considering he's from Strasbourg his upbringing will likely mean his natural tendencies are more in line with Swabian's than Catalan's.

For me he tried to adopt a style that he was not capable of truly understanding & this has led to him being unable to communicate his vision to his players, I think he would have found it much easier to adapt to a gegenpressing style than tiki-taka, not that I like either label but they do describe subtly different approaches & one was much closer to how he used to set up his team than the other.

Edit: Not sure but I think I've got you to talk yourself into keeping Wenger. :D

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tbh Wenger's biggest failing was falling head over heals in love with what Barcelona were doing in the late 2000's when given is style up to then he probably should have been looking more closely at what was going on in SW Germany & considering he's from Strasbourg his upbringing will likely mean his natural tendencies are more in line with Swabian's than Catalan's.

For me he tried to adopt a style that he was not capable of truly understanding & this has led to him being unable to communicate his vision to his players, I think he would have found it much easier to adapt to a gegenpressing style than tiki-taka, not that I like either label but they do describe subtly different approaches & one was much closer to how he used to set up his team than the other.

I don't think it was just Wenger who moved that way (Ferguson at ManUtd did a similar switch of style around the same time) but I agree with your general point. Wenger's best Arsenal team for me was 01/02, that style of play was great and has if anything come back into fashion again now.

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Well why do you care?

Because he's clearly got something to offer hence why Pochettino and Guardiola both want him. I assume Wenger doesn't want him to stay because he doesn't seem to like big personalities on his coaching staff

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Because he's clearly got something to offer hence why Pochettino and Guardiola both want him. I assume Wenger doesn't want him to stay because he doesn't seem to like big personalities on his coaching staff

We have no idea if he's going to be a good coach or not.

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I don't think it was just Wenger who moved that way (Ferguson at ManUtd did a similar switch of style around the same time) but I agree with your general point. Wenger's best Arsenal team for me was 01/02' date=' that style of play was great and has if anything come back into fashion again now.[/quote']It never really went out of fashion, it was just adopted & improved upon to counter the more precise style of play that everyone was trying to emulate, had he stuck with his core principles of how football should be played I do believe that with a few tweaks he'd have a lot more trophies on display.

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We have no idea if he's going to be a good coach or not.

If good managers see his potential it says a lot. Plus how would you know if he's a good coach or not as their job is totally behind the scenes.

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For all the wheels coming off (again) and defence midfielders and ropey centre backs (any chance Chambers plays a first team game?) I think Arsenal need a proper striker, that would be priority number 1. Someone like Costa, no, not him but someone that is clearly a top club striker. The give him a chance in a tight game and put it away type game. Maybe Cavani if he's available, Higuain again (although morning papers "Mourinho to United and I'm taking Higuain with me!!1!, etc)

If Arsenal start the season with Giroud, Walcott, Welbeck again there will be tears. I don't have much of an issue with either of those players and I am sure stats show Giroud has scored x goals but there is always that run of 7 or 8 games where Arsenal just lose touch and it usually coincides with Giroud being out of form and not hitting a barn door and you just can't afford that

Welbeck's defending from the front is amazing though. In United's 'hard working team over glamour' I can't see how he wouldn't want him. He wins back the ball and closes down defenders so well and so often that it's not something that just happens this is an actual skill he possesses in abundance

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Nah not Higuain, apparently he's not good enough for Arsenal ;)

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Who says we even need another coach? It's all romantic and lovely thinking that we can offer coaching roles to every likeable player that retires here, but when you've got a team of skilled experienced coaches do you really need Arteta there as well backing up what they say as a token gesture? When does it end too? Every time someone retires in the club or a former player retires there's always shouts to give them coaching contracts, I'm sure Arsenal know what they're doing when it comes to coaching staff

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You're sure Arsenal know what they are doing? Why? Because Arsenal act like a club that knows what it's doing?

Spurs are currently playing how we used to play.

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Well I think they should wait until they've done it at least 10 years in a row.

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To think we celebrated a draw at Stoke like a victory, small mentality = small reward

Are you really comparing a draw in January to Spurs win today?

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Especially as we were playing Campbell and Walcott out wide iirc.

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