An Open letter to the statement from the “Arsenal blogosphere clique”

Responsive image

Stan - Why weren't there more protests when Arsene was in charge?

(Ed’s note – open church here at The Gooner – we print views from across the Arsenal spectrum – please remember that doesn’t mean we agree with all of them!)

Dear bloggers,

I write this as someone who has been an Arsenal fan for over 40 years, held a season ticket for over 20 years and has watched the club fall into a steady decline, something that was obvious to everyone with a brain and impartial analysis, as far back as 2010. I need to ask what the point of your “open letter” to Kroenke was? Do you even know what you want? That letter reads like Santa’s wishlist and does not contain any concrete or firm proposals, just a bunch of aspirational questions/wishes! What is “Arsenal DNA”? Is it losing matches 8-2? Or capitulations? Or celebrating 4th place? What is it? It certainly isn’t winning.

I don’t know if any of you have noticed but Arsenal has been in rapid decline since 2010. Arsenal has not once finished within 3 points of the Premier League title winners since the club last won the league in 2004! That is a joke. Arsenal managed to finish 10 points behind Leicester City in a season where Man United, Chelsea, Liverpool and City ALL took the season off! And still then, Arsene Wenger could not complete the job. Arsenal have suffered some of the biggest capitulations and humiliations that have been witnessed in our lifetimes: there was an 8-2 at Old Trafford, a 6-0 in Wenger’s 1,000th game at Chelsea, a 6-3 at City; 5-1 at Anfield happening within weeks of each other etc. The Champions League football that Arsenal fans seem to so be desperate for, was even more of an embarrassment. Everyone remembers that 10-2 Bayern thumping in Wenger’s last ever CL tie. Oh it was Wenger that left Arsenal in the Europa doldrums FYI, we all recall that. Right?

So you see, Arsenal have been having serious issues for a decade. For a decade the club has not come close to competing for the PL, has not competed for the CL (8 consecutive last 16 defeats) and has continually sold its best players to domestic rivals, and below market value. Stan Kroenke is not an ideal owner – far from it – however, I need to ask what it is Arsenal fans are moaning about? They spent years under Wenger pretending Arsenal was some moral arbiter club that didn’t do “sugar daddy ownership” and was “self-sustaining”. All of a sudden, they are whining because they want to be like Chelsea or City? Funny that because those of us who asked this exact same thing back in 2010 were accused of being “entitled” and told to “f*** off and go support City”. In Arsene Wenger’s final five years at Arsenal, he spent over £350 million on players! Check the numbers. Arsenal are currently hampered in the transfer market because the club is packed with overpaid dross that cannot be given away: Wenger/Gazidis gave Ozil £350k per week. Wenger again paid £35m for Mustafi. Wenger brought in Koscielny who has a dead Achilles and displays a shocking attitude. Wenger again, paid Mkhitaryan £180k a week. Wenger allowed Aaron Ramsey’s contract to run down to its final year hence allowing him to hold all the cards, just as he allowed Sanchez’ deal to run down. Etc. These scandalous financial decisions are what are hurting AFC today. If Stan Kroenke is guilty of something, it is of allowing Arsene Wenger to spend crazy money on rubbish. The reason Arsenal’s budget is restricted is simply down to the reckless financial mismanagement of Arsene Wenger and Ivan Gazidis. Simple as that. It’s a problem years in the making, not one season in the making, as this laughable letter pretends. (Ed’s note – interesting interpretation of the statement, as I wasn’t aware it only referred to last season)

Yet what is instructive, is that for that decade when Wenger and Gazidis conspired to blow hundreds of millions of pounds on garbage and harmed the club’s future prospects? There was not a single demonstration, a single protest or a single concerted effort from this list of “influencers” (whatever the hell that fake job title means). Not a peep, because every single one of these Twitter warriors was a Wenger apologist and acolyte. Much like the mainstream media, they would write for clicks and worship or excuse all Wenger’s recklessness. They were perfectly happy to preach “patience” year after year, despite all the evidence pointing to Wenger misusing Arsenal funds. These same bloggers who now want credit for “doing something” (errr what’s that then? Writing a letter Kroenke will never read, to get more PR, and more clicks for your blogs?), are the same bloggers who mocked other Arsenal fans who at least tried to hold protests to get rid of Wenger. The blogs in question know who they are. They ridiculed those trying to effect change in the stadium, something I respect more than writing letters nobody of import at the club will ever read. Some of these blogs were even accepting freebies from the Kroenke regime, promoting AFC club tat on their blogs – and yet, now that their beloved Wenger is gone, they are pretending that there is suddenly “an emergency”? Where have they been the past decade! Sorry but this letter smacks of the cowardice we see running through the playing team. Spineless fans, spineless players.

Please note how these “influencers” clique of AKBs have waited until the first post-Wenger season to finally pipe up. Not a word before then. Also note, that these “influencers” appear to be complaining about Kroenke “not investing” while conveniently overlooking that Tottenham Hotspur, in their first season after moving to an expensive new stadium in London, smashed their (and Arsenal’s!) transfer record and outbid Arsenal for a player in the market! They did this without being owned by oil money, with a much lower wage bill than Arsenal, and did not sign a player in 18 months prior. Kroenke has spent far more money over the past decade than Tottenham have. Or, you could look at Diego Simeone, who spent far less net money than Wenger ever did at Arsenal, and in a comparative period won a League title against not one, but two superclubs, made two CL finals, and won two European trophies. All while being paid far less in salary than Wenger. These “influencers” also need to recall that their beloved Arsene Wenger strongly defended Stan Kroenke and called him “a dream owner”. They weren’t so willing to attack Kroenke when Arsene was endorsing him though eh? So you see, Kroenke actually gave Wenger far more resources than the likes Pochettino, Simeone and Klopp have been provided on a net basis. Check the numbers. The main difference, is that Simeone, Pochettino and Klopp etc have been far more competent at selling and buying players. They have not paid crazy salaries to garbage like Jenkinson, Elneny, Diaby, Gervinho, Song, Chamakh etc. All the cash they got for selling was reinvested in upgrading players – while Wenger and Gazidis trousered it. Kroenke is guilty of not reining in Wenger’s spending and of not sacking him sooner.

Perhaps if these “influencers” cared so much about AFC, we would have heard something from them back in 2012 after Arsenal were destroyed 8-2 at Old Trafford, an entirely avoidable humiliation that happened simply because Kroenke provided Wenger with funds, but Wenger thought he was so smart he could risk going into a season and scraping 4th without spending. It took an 8-2 thrashing and then, mysteriously, Wenger went out and spent over £75 million on new players within the space of a week! Magic eh?

So, while we must all acknowledge Kroenke is a dispassionate, disinterested owner, we must also acknowledge that this has always been the case – but it’s odd because these bloggers have only just now realized this. Hmmm ok. Kroenke delegated everything to Wenger, and gave him huge funds to make the club a success. Wenger blew the lot, talked about his “sense of financial responsibility” but of course, he made sure he collected his £17m payoff for being sacked; he loaded the wage bill with horrific players on crazy money, allowed the only sellable asset (Ramsey) to run down his deal to the final season, he pulled the plug on the Sanchez-City deal, hence denying the club an extra £60m in transfer funds, he then awarded the clown Ozil a £350k a week wage when literally nobody wanted to sign him. THIS is the legacy that has meant the club has had to rein in spending until it can extinguish the dumpster fire Wenger/Gazidis started.

So, seriously. This “open letter” is an embarrassment and Kroenke will rightly throw it in the trash can or wipe his behind with it. Why would Kroenke suddenly listen now when these same fans basically gave him a free pass for a decade? What has changed now? They won’t boycott, they are not demanding, and we have seen 4th place is the height of these “influencers” ambitions. While I would usually commend someone making an effort to force change, this is a transparent media exercise designed to heighten and get more clicks and “social media awareness” PR for these laughable bloggers, and, more to the point, it is a mode of action that is only a decade overdue. Bravo!

Article Rating

Leave a comment

Sign-in with your Online Gooner forum login to add your comment. If you do not have a login register here.


  1. markymark

    Jul 25, 2019, 18:39 #114460

    At AISA - listening to Edu , he says first chats about his role started in December. A question has been asked about the squad ( much laughter in audience ) Edu is being very diplomatic and said I’ve just arrived and it’s very exiciting period . So he didn’t answer that one. Ps Camden Brewery beer on tap - massive improvement !

  2. markymark

    Jul 25, 2019, 07:34 #114459

    Exiled in PT - I’ve always wondered about Danny as in many ways he was the perfect owner. A real fan etc. Apparently when he received his bad prognosis he tried to get his sons to take over but they weren’t interested so Kroenke became the main man in town. The fall out between Danny and Dein is one of those great untold stories , might even be worthy of a one off docudrama style episode. I suspect both had their flaws but both at their best gave Arsenal presence. Dein wanted to loosen the reigns on spending and pissed off Fergie with his FA connections. Under Dein we did wield power even if his Wembley and invitation to Kroenke was iffy. Danny’s ultimate demise ultimately put us here . I’m sure he wouldn’t have wanted that ? That’s the tragedy

  3. itsRonagain2

    Jul 25, 2019, 06:10 #114458

    Clubs like Liverpool have learned from Arsenal’s folly. What they’ve done is build Anfield slowly but impressively and continue to do so as and when they can afford it. Get proper coaches in , working up to getting a top calibrre man in , Klopp and building a squad with proper players so to give the team and the business model a solid foundation that’s really sustainable. Arsenal’s notion of sustainability is a joke. Their version of it is that they’ve overstrched and are now skint and have no money. Typical London venture. All hype, bells and whistles and very little substance yet the punters flock to it believing the spin and drivel that flows out the club like shit from a sewer pipe

  4. itsRonagain2

    Jul 25, 2019, 05:54 #114457

    True Cyril. The share sales as Dein and co scarpered and others etc made them a lot of money but share prices are based on perceptions of the value of a business not the reality of it. The perception of Arsenal at the time with its glitzy stadium was flawed but the reality is the club was holed below its waterline for the reasons I mentioned earlier. The salaries of Wenger and Gazadis and Co was just sheer indulgence. The club couldn’t afford to pay the salaries but like any business that’s deluded itself that it’s big and successful, that’s what they do, they pay out big money to people who they can’t afford and more so, to people they don’t actually need ie Wenger and Ozil types. Small business owners often behave like Arsenal did. They pay themselves too much, buy BMWs instead of cheaper cars, buy flash premises etc etc. That rabble who took Arsenal down this route acted like a bunch of hairy arsed dreamers starting up a car showroom in a back street. As for that orange c—t Dein, we saw his colours years back with his Bond. Makes me smile when I see these posters say they need him back. He fooled them with his big I m a fan act. He’s a fu——g spi v and always was. In my view the ground shift hasn’t been a success. A footie club success is based on what it does on the pitch and AFC since 2004 have done little and don’t look like changing that for many years. Hindsight’s wonderful but it’s correct that they had chance to develop Highbury and shd have done so as the first step to becoming a bigger club in reality as opposed to a big club in their imagination.

  5. Cyril

    Jul 24, 2019, 22:43 #114456

    Exiled- very true. The truth is that Dein sold us out amongst others. Yet , he has been given an easy ride. Oddly enough. Ron, not entirely in agreement about the move. It’s been an unmitigated success for the owners and management team (Wenger) as they have either sold on or hoovered up salaries in the hype. Fitting that Wenger et al left us with Özil on x a week. Can’t type it as would melt at my keyboard. At what point - do we look back and realise that with all our good intent as fans, we have been totally had. If I saw Wenger in the street now in Totteridge, I would walk past him with my head down or cross the road. What a sad end !

  6. Exiled in Pt

    Jul 24, 2019, 21:30 #114455

    Agree with you both Cyril and Ron. In my opinion Fiszman and Dein are the ones that sold us down the river. Between the two of them both so called Arsenal men sold there shares to the highest bidder, none other than the wank yank. Through their own silly power struggle in the board room!! Highbury could and should of been redeveloped to 50 odd thousand instead of like you say Ron thinking they were as big as Man Ure and Barcelona. The worst thing now is when you watch the Rocky and Wrighty documentary and you see the old tango kid Dein giving it large like Arsenal and the club means anything to him. Complete scum in my eyes filling there own pockets first....

  7. itsRonagain2

    Jul 24, 2019, 19:28 #114454

    Cyril. Ha ha. There’s truth in all that. Seriously though, change is ok as long though as it’s managed change. Put aside Boards. Wenger. SK etc. I think Arsenal’s biggest flaw was the clubs naivety from 1999 and after when the stadium change plan was hatched. The old. Board went and did it alone. They thought they had the business nous internally to leave the old AFC behind. They got all the deals wrong as we ve learned later. Sponsorship deals left sponsors sniggering at them as they got it so cheap. The planning authority for Islington rinsed and took the piss out of them and forced so many expensive planning conditions on them. They acted as their own developer re stadium and the Highbury flats and were fleeced by the construction industry. It goes on and on. By time they moved ground the whole situ was a mess created of their own arrogance and ineptitude. They were straightened money wise from day 1. They’ve not recovered yet 14 yrs on. The club were silly enough to think that building a dome 200 yards down the road would make them a Munich or a Utd over night. Reality was that they were not a particularly big club before they left Hughbury. The trophies undercearky Wenger years was a mirage though. They duped the fans and worse still, themselves into thinking it was easy to become a football juggernaut from a starting point so far back. This is why the Club has declined. AFC was a mini market who thought they could be Tesco over night. A bunch of clowns pretending to hard nosed businessman thinking it could be done on the cheap and without proper expertise to steer it. We argue about coaches mainly Wenger and the latter day owner but the rot we have now originated well before those 2 fell In love and got married.

  8. Pauljames

    Jul 24, 2019, 19:20 #114453

    Looks like we’ll get Ceballos for the season which is potentially good news. The guy looks class by all accounts and if it means we see less of Özil and Mikhi Mouse than I’m all for it.

  9. Cyril

    Jul 24, 2019, 17:43 #114452

    Those ?? were supposed to be smiles by the way. Take me back to telephone boxes, no mobiles, 3 tv channels, tv repair men, vhs, binatone, pick and mix, 99p records, brown studios with browner kipper ties, robin day, wrestling at 4 o clock and snow at Christmas . I could go on....

  10. Cyril

    Jul 24, 2019, 17:35 #114451

    ‘All the gear and no idea’. Oh dear (sorry am trying to get away from the rhyming now) Ron- what are we to do to fix this problem. Sod it, the sun’s out , I’m down by Sandown and Madness will be playing later. It’s an Embarrassment is the only song I’m thinking of. Enjoy the sun Ron??

  11. itsRonagain2

    Jul 24, 2019, 14:59 #114450

    H Cyril. Yes, its a social thing isnt it. I used to like to doing 3 or 4 away matches per season after 2013 when i stopped home games. Good days out. The results meant very little to be honest. It used to be a good chance to catch up with old pals from the South East, but once we were 7 of us and then 5 and then ...........You know how it is. Yes, the kits looks good. Shame about half the players wearing it!!

  12. Colonel Blimp

    Jul 24, 2019, 13:09 #114449

    Same old story then......2-0 up against 10 men and then get a red card and bottle it. Looks like a long long long long long long (did I say long?) season ahead.

  13. markymark

    Jul 24, 2019, 08:29 #114448

    We have to make allowances that , newer , younger Arsenal supporters will make it theirs long after we are gone. The American tour was actually pretty impressive ! Now on other news Cabellos appears to be a Falangist Francoist who’s twittered in the past about bombing Catalans . Let’s hope this folly of youth is well behind him. I’d imagine an IRA supporting footballer would not go down well so same for Falangists. Putting my old man hat on. If one invention could be unmade . Twitter would be high on the list

  14. Cyril

    Jul 24, 2019, 07:44 #114447

    Ron, I go purely as there are a bank of ysdotted around the stadium and we have a beer and a curry at times. If I was flying solo, I would be long gone. It’s only a matter of time before I give it up. And I think I was subconsciously hoping Arsenal would have told me its gone 7 weeks later. Would have been a convenient excuse. I will keep going but it’s decline all the way by the looks of it. Nice kit though.

  15. itsRonagain2

    Jul 23, 2019, 22:51 #114446

    Not a sucker at all Cyril. It’s each to their own choices my friend. To be truthful, I don’t blame AFC totally. I was tiring about the direction of football generally well before I ended the home game pilgrimages. For me, it deteriorated more as each season passes. As a spectacle it lost its sheen years ago and it rarely compares to many other sports now. It’s a game played by and ran by largely quite dim and scowling cup half full types all pre possessed by dredging yet more cash from it in return for offering very little to it as a sporting concept. It’s rotten to its core. I hope yr faith in sticking with it rewards you and others though. I truly do.

  16. Cyril

    Jul 23, 2019, 20:30 #114445

    Ron, I have got to give it to you. Do you remember the last game at Highbury when Hill wood came out nearly and pi**ed. I thought pi***ed as he was happy but NO, pi**ed cos we was sad. He knew it was over it seems. I can’t emphasise the word pi**ed enough. The thing is Ron- I just renewed 7 weeks after the end date. Ron , please classify me as SMI- severerely mentally impaired- at least I will get my Council Tax paid. What a sucker I am !

  17. itsRonagain2

    Jul 23, 2019, 20:02 #114444

    Ps. Cyril. For those of us who saw the thrashing’s away at Utd and Anfield a part of all of us as Gunners fans died off quite a bit I think.

  18. itsRonagain2

    Jul 23, 2019, 19:53 #114443

    Hi Cyril. It was simple for me. 2010 was when yr feeling set in for me. At OT for the 8-2 in 2011 was when it really sunk home about the direction of the club. No comments about the loss. No statements from the old fraud. Nothing. It just carried on like a little blip. A minor loss like in a pre season game. Staggering. Blind faith kept me going until the Derby game in Sept 2013. There was more atmosphere in my sock drawer in the bedroom here than st that awful stadium that day. One day then away at some game I can’t recall and a putrid gutless loss of sorts it was my day to drive and a mate idly asked how many really good games hadcwe seen in 5 years. We worked it out and it was agreed roughly it was between 5 and 7. I’ve never been back to the bowl since that Derby game that Arse won 1-0. The crappest Derby I d seen in 40 years. Add the non investment and watching yr diab us senders s and Denilsins er al and jacked it in. No regrets at all. 44 yrs after going to my first home game at Highbury I decided enough was enough of the conning lying club and it’s abdication. I’ve been once since that game I can’t recall. Away at Leics the season after Leics had won the title. Another crap featureless game. 0-0. Mate. I never liked that new stadium from the day I went for Bergys testimonial. Arsenal as we knew it died the season before. I’m quite surprised anybody who experienced football before 1992 still goes to be honest.


    Jul 23, 2019, 18:47 #114442

    I see Stanley's investment, AFC, is now only 42 on the Forbes rich list - that's a significant fall isn't it? Plenty of USA "sports" at the top though - which asks the obvious question, why on earth did he bother to buy us? He isn't interested & he doesn't care & so AFC, whatever management structure is in place, will never be a top club again unless he has a complete metamorphosis & becomes an active business owner. Not holding my breath.

  20. Cyril

    Jul 23, 2019, 18:36 #114441

    Ron- they don’t seem to give a flying... I asked them about take up and it was ‘really good renewals, considering”. They come across as one of those middling companies who can take or leave your business. How can I describe it - like a Clarkes shoes. They have their share of the market with the regular customers after soft shoes. No life in them Ron. Mr Kroenke’s soft shoe company - established 2006/7 or whenever. Never felt so demotivated ever in my life!

  21. Don Howe

    Jul 23, 2019, 17:13 #114440

    Well you may be right Arsenal Magna or Optimus Prime, as I didn't see why we needed to buy Ian Wright but I'm going to stick to my guns here. Zaha is a PIA. I agree with you about system. We must defend and abandon the headless chicken nonsense. Last season we could only do this when fitness levels allowed and we crashed and burned at the end. I would say bring back George Graham but he retreated too far into a defensive shell. MM dislikes cooking lager. Who can blame him. We should drown Ozil in it to improve the taste.

  22. markymark

    Jul 23, 2019, 15:56 #114439

    I understand that the cooking lager available at food units is going to be replaced by the Camden Brewery so proper craft beer. Best news so far!!!

  23. ArsenalMagna

    Jul 23, 2019, 09:55 #114438

    @Don Howe, I can't post links here but there's a Sky article entitled 'Wilfried Zaha offers chaos factor Arsenal lack but Crystal Palace will fight to keep him', which I recommend you read. Zaha's key winger stats for the last 5 years put him second in the EPL only to Hazard, and this whilst playing for a team battling relegation each year. It also shows that Arsenal's stats for dribbles and shots taken was at mid-table level last year, so Zaha would remedy those deficiencies perfectly. As for defenders, it's not defenders Arsenal need but a DEFENCE. Emery has continued Wenger's gung ho doctrine and that is why our back line looks so bad. Worth bearing in mind that top CBs cost as much as a top forward nowadays too - i.e. beyond our budget really.

  24. itsRonagain2

    Jul 23, 2019, 09:09 #114437

    Don - the mentality is clearly to sate the Arbuthnot - Smythes who frequent the glass bowl so theyre getting them a 'trophy buy'. Zaha is yr man. Hes an Arse 'fan' dont forget!! He ll sell some merchandise i bet. Thats the main thing. The fact of him being an over rated, delusional, diving poser who can manage 25 games a Season is irrelevant.

  25. Don Howe

    Jul 23, 2019, 08:51 #114436

    I've come to an epiphany. The people who run our club really do not have a clue what they are doing. Proof - they wish to spend £60 million on a player, Zaha, who is not as good as our current two strikers and would prove no substantial addition to the team. WE HAVE NO DEFENDERS. What medication are they on? It needs to be changed.

  26. markymark

    Jul 23, 2019, 05:31 #114435

    A good experiment in nature vs nurture will be Trippier going to Athletico. The coaching is fearsome I gather , very old school in its way. Will Trippier be turned into UK’s best defender albeit in Spain? My bet is if he avoids injury it will be a yes.

  27. itsRonagain2

    Jul 22, 2019, 22:37 #114434

    Cyril - they’ve lied their balls off for years about Season tickets. In my last Season going I indulged myself - 2012- 13. I had a club level seat down there right above the red action area. A corner seat. A couple of old friends way back from Woodford had seats so I went up with them. Best seats in that stadium are the CL seats by far. My Silver was used by an official supp club so it worked well for me. The CL seat was easy to farm out cheaply to people I know when I cdt be bothered to go and use it which was quite often in truth. No kid now, for 4 yrs after I had calls from the season ticket office asking if I wanted one on the basis that I d held that club level. Yet, all the yrs of the Silver barely shifted me up the list but hey ho, get a CL and they want you back! They think everybody up in them seats are minted. The ST they wd offer would be one of them shit seats high up admittedly where you need yr telescope to see the pitch never mind the players but it serves to show this waiting list bull crap is just that.

  28. Cyril

    Jul 22, 2019, 22:01 #114433

    Heads up: I decided to give my ST up after 20 years. Was supposed to pay be 1st June , I think. Called up today 7 weeks later and they have still held my ticket open. Um. What is the real truth behind closed doors?


    Jul 22, 2019, 18:36 #114432

    Don, I see Stanley more as Buster Keaton - silent but minus the laughs.

  30. Don Howe

    Jul 22, 2019, 16:32 #114431

    You want Stan played by Jon Pertwee? I see him more as Burt Lancaster. What a Doctor he would have made.

  31. Colonel Blimp

    Jul 22, 2019, 11:15 #114430

    The comments about the art of defending being a lost art ring true. In the USA too, for TV audiences, gridiron has gone so far in favour of the attacking side it's becoming meaningless; QB's passing 400+ yards a game, team A beating team B 41-38 every other week and so on. Over here, pundits come in their pants over a 3-3 draw; to me a 3-3 draw is two sides who can't defend. Maybe it's just a phase. As for the "open letter"; as the writer quite correctly states, who do these people think they are? Do they really think anyone is taking any notice? Or is it simply to "raise their profile" before snagging a nice cushy job in PR?


    Jul 21, 2019, 19:13 #114429

    I understand that our dynamic owner, The Silent Stanster, is going to have a meeting with the Numero Uno at Real Madrid in which he is going to use his cutting edge negotiating skills to bully the poor guy into letting us have one of their cast-offs for a season. I would pay good money to eavesdrop on that meeting!! Is this the moment that the Stanley changes habits of a lifetime & becomes a force for good at AFC - a footballing superhero complete with cape and maybe a sonic screwdriver?

  33. Don Howe

    Jul 21, 2019, 11:10 #114428

    Itsronagain2. Bless you for that. Whilst I quite understand all of that, Mancity have an excellent defence and Liverpudlians have transformed their fortunes by hiring Van Dirk. So the top attackers are keeping the whole 3 points by defending solidly. It does still matter. I agree with you that the suits have done their best to destroy football. Some things can’t be screwed up. A good putter is a match for anyone. A poor putter is a match for no one. The woods are full of long drivers. Orthodoxy will win games and titles and that’s what players and punters really want . To win.

  34. Don Howe

    Jul 21, 2019, 11:10 #114427

    Itsronagain2. Bless you for that. Whilst I quite understand all of that, Mancity have an excellent defence and Liverpudlians have transformed their fortunes by hiring Van Dirk. So the top attackers are keeping the whole 3 points by defending solidly. It does still matter. I agree with you that the suits have done their best to destroy football. Some things can’t be screwed up. A good putter is a match for anyone. A poor putter is a match for no one. The woods are full of long drivers. Orthodoxy will win games and titles and that’s what players and punters really want . To win.

  35. markymark

    Jul 21, 2019, 09:23 #114426

    Ron2 - not so sure about the “no team has been successful without a committed board? I think things come about a little by accident . George Graham truly over performed with little help from the board ( refusal to finance Roy Keene move ) Derby’s board were constantly at war with Clough . Man UTD with Gill emerged into a good board but appeared in disarray at times with the Irish horse owner syndicate and prior to that the almost sale to a fraudster who they let kick a ball about on their pitch. Often the best boards leave things alone ( like Kroenke ?!? ) I almost joke. His mistake was falling in love with Arsene . He should have shown teeth and sacked him 3 years prior .

  36. itsRonagain2

    Jul 20, 2019, 23:08 #114425

    Hi GR. fair enough and sound logic. However. This owner appointed all these people apart from Wenger and those people he appointed inc probably his Son advised him to stick with the set up all those years and not to change it. His financial people no doubt USA based would also sanction the wage spending and underpin the spending on rubbish players that his Coach recommended. He delegates as you say while he spent years hoovering up shares to own the Club outright. An owner who desires seeks and then obtains sole control like that doesn’t just sit back passively and remain detached from what he s created. He may be absent but he’s got his finger on the pulse. Arsenal are as putrid and anaemic as the rest of his franchises as a result. With all due respect you’re vision is very rose tinted. No Club has ever been successful without a committed and efficient owner/board nor has any other type of business. AFC have become what they are after him having 12 years at the helm not 12 days. The Toon fans would be happy with Micky mouse running their gig after a few good results such is their hunger for a decent team plus they did express the same view of Ashley back then. It’s wrong to say they didn’t. My Sister and Bro in Law are Toon fans and live nearby and go to games there. Arsenal’s make up and it’s present culture is made and sustained in Kroenkeville.

  37. GoonerRon

    Jul 20, 2019, 20:16 #114424

    I think we attach too much emphasis on the owner and how he impacts the club day to day. People bleat on about ‘silent Stan’ all the time - who has ever heard Joe Lewis or Daniel Levy or Roman Abramovich or Sheik Mansour speak or give loads of interviews in the press? I literally couldn’t give two shits if Kroenke has a season ticket in the North Bank or doesn’t go to one game a season if I’m honest. These are the facts: he doesn’t invest his own money into the club, and there is no absolute requirement saying he has to. He devolves the various aspects of running the immediate, short, medium and long term strategies of the club to his son, Sanllehi, Vinai, Edu, Unai Emery and Per Mertesacker - again there is no hard and fast rule that the owner should micromanage the club’s executives. The fact is I believe the club when they say every penny we make is reinvested back into the club, the problem is we’re in the midst of a perfect storm where poor spending by Gazidis and Wenger has meant a bloated CL wage bill at a time when we’re on EL income, wage and transfer fee inflation is off the scale and the players we want to sell seem to be tarnished by being at Arsenal. Not ideal. Thing is we’re coming out of an unprecedented period of change at the club that we will never have to go through again. Kroenke was far from perfect before and during this process - he clearly gave too much power to Gazidis without check and balance and he seemed in awe of Wenger which meant his tenure went on for too long. Sanllehi has a lot to prove but given his experience in Spain with Barca he is likely to be cut from a different cloth to Gazidis. Our new executive structure is 1 week old, we’ve got two invincibles directly involved in the running of the club/team and have what is potentially the most talented crop of young players that have come through the academy in the last 30 years. Something still needs to click with Emery and the team (and there’s still plenty to do in the window) but personally I think performances, progress, something to buy into on the pitch largely dictate the mood of us supporters (even Newcastle fans didn’t complain about Ashley when they were pushing for top 4 under Pardew). Let’s hope we can get something going this season.

  38. itsRonagain2

    Jul 20, 2019, 18:39 #114423

    Don. You are absolutely correct about our traditions and success having been built on a sound defensive platform. All our best teams ( even Wengers) had good defensive stalwart type players. Tough. Robust and well drilled. The problem nowadays though is that defending has become superfluous. Great defending doesn’t sit with today’s TV oriented game. Tackling has been forced out to make life easier for forwards to score. The rules of the game. Offside rule. Handball etc have all been skewed against the defender. TV is the paymaster. It wants goals goals and more goals. Football has been bastardised. Teams have become evacuated. A whole aspect of the game ie defending has been made unfashionable and unpopular. Result - few great defenders emerge now. Full backs are now wingers. Goalies have to play football with feet. The position of centre half has become a position forgotten about, that’s why so many shit players play there attempting to stem the tide of forwards who can push and pull them all over the shop. Because of this new football climate and the rule changes many of the attackers are crap but still wreak havoc with defences because they’re favoured. They don’t need to be much good. Donkeys like Kane. He’s rigid. Doesn’t move too well. Can’t control a football very well but he can make and has made a name for himself by playing in this era when defending is so bloody crap. It’s not just Arsenal mate , it’s all of them. That PL has 17 or 18 shit defences. Football is a circus now. An razzanataz American influenced theatre type sport. It’s garbage and yr points are all factors that’s made it garbage. It’s not going to change Don. The new type fan wouldn’t have it either. They want gratification NOW. All this is why I’ve given up going and have certainly switched off from the PL now. They can keep it for me matey.

  39. Don Howe

    Jul 20, 2019, 10:02 #114422

    This article can be summed up as follows. Wenger did the damage, Kroenke allowed him to, ergo critics of Kroenke are AKB's. Here's my take. Wenger should have been assassinated 10 years ago. He is the worst manager in Arsenal's history bar none, leaving us stark naked in a critical time. He was given the best team in London and made it the third best. Kroenke should have pulled the plug seasons ago. Here's the thing. He knows nothing about the history of the club and he does not understand that Arsenal is first and foremost about the DEFENCE. From Herbert Chapman to Don Howe and George Graham ITS THE DEFENCE STUPID. I hate the AKB's more than I hate Wenger, BUT any steps which are taken to acquaint the present management with the central facts of Arsenal life are welcome. Josh Kroenke reacted to this initiative. Getting a reaction is a huge achievement. It is our way back. WE have to embrace the ownership and try and steer it towards the fundamentals. Koscielny is on a Disciplinary. Now lets get them to put New Blonde Ozil on one and clear him out so that we can play with 11 men again.

  40. Cyril

    Jul 20, 2019, 00:20 #114421

    Ron, accepted analysis of the now. I’m merely pointing to our glorious past of which you and I understand is untouchable and astounding. It’s what I hold onto in times of ‘ration’; If I may use such a term loosely with respect to those who went before us in those very times. It’s all I hold onto these days. It may have been 90 years ago or so but as you know - it must be relevant or do we just dismiss ? Can looking back be a catalyst for change ? I hope so!

  41. itsRonagain2

    Jul 19, 2019, 22:29 #114420

    Hi Cyril. The point I’m getting at is that 15 yrs with no title isn’t as catastrophic as is made out esp as the club has at least been thereabouts in the same period and wonCups. We have a wonderful record as you say but ours spans many decades. We ve not dictated a 20 or 25 yr period as Utd and Liv have done. It’s not demeaning to the club to accept we have barren spells as do the other bigger clubs. We cd even argue our decline is nothing like Utd and Liv have had. Liv were a ramshacle 2nd div team for yrs. manure went down in the 70s. Arguably Liv were sweet f—k all as a club till early 60s Shankly period started. Arsenal’s present state is one of acute anaemia though. It’s like a footie club with gout!! 12 yrs of shit management and money driven pigs sucking the bottom out of the trough. We look like we’re yrs behind the other clubs now having an owner who doesn’t want a new broom approach. Left to him Wengo would still be there philosophising and boring the pants off everybody daft enough to hear his drivel. While I think many fans have rather deluded notions that we shd be vying for titles every yr, they are totally right to be fearful that this malaise is so deep rooted that it cd take many yrs to climb out of. In line with the original poster here quite a few of us said that it was the owner who needed targeting as much as Wengo did but I and them were blown away by even suggesting that anything but Wengo out was losing focus. Any business rots from the top. Not just footie clubs which are all small beer comparatively to other corporations. Many of our fans fell for the delusions of grandeur that the club encouraged and spun for them when we moved into that bloody awful stadium. We developed a certain fan snobbery for quite some yrs. I used to hear it all the time as fans sneered and smirked at other clubs. The present insipid rubbish we re mired in now might give us back our humility at least and from there we can emerge again.

  42. Exiled in Pt

    Jul 19, 2019, 22:17 #114419

    I tend to agree with most of what is said in this piece and also with everything said in the posts below. Now not wanting to repeat myself but I will just say once again if the bloggers etc who backed the letter really mean it, let's see a walk out in the first home game of the season against Burnley. Give it 15 minutes or actually how about 11 minutes to match the years the wank yank has been owner. Then we might see some interest from the media and it might make him have a look. Or instead let's all buy a shirt because it looks a bit like what we wore when the team and the fans had sone bottle...EIE... . As already pointed out most of us on here having been saying Wenger out since 2008 either on this forum or at actual games, we are not all keyboard warriors, I think a lot of us stopped attending because of the direction the club has been heading...


    Jul 19, 2019, 18:21 #114418

    Not only are London fans "pussies" in not being radical enough, we all agree that the modern EPL footballer is, by & large, a grossly overpaid pussy. But back to The Arsenal - this article misses the whole point about Stanley & his ownership. Before this uninspiring American nonentity came into our lives, I always felt there was a Board ( ok, a lot of Old Etonians etc. on there) who despite their failings had the Club's interests at heart. Today's world is vastly different & the new breed of owner is generally a billionaire type & there is no point in complaining about this brave new world. Yes, Stanley has made funds available for the likes of Arthur Webster to piss away but that is all he has done - write a few cheques without bothering to ask "what is this money going to do for my investment". In business terms I suppose, barring a recession, the asset value of AFC has grown but that's just the market & not his "brilliance". In operational terms his custodianship has been a complete failure. If footie is a results business then you would award Stanley no more than, say, 2 out of 10 - "could do much better". He has not fulfilled the prime requirement of any owner - to monitor & grow his business. he has been completely reactive & that in a very slow, reluctant way. He looks pathetic compared to the ruthlessness of The Russian, the Arab Sheiks &, dare I say it, that Joe Lewis guy. The worst possible owner - even worse than Mike Ashley, at least you know where he is coming from.

  44. markymark

    Jul 19, 2019, 18:08 #114417

    I do get the feeling sometimes that the blogosphere is full of chaps slating off when they don’t attend and I mean in years. I actually think fan action has been fairly fertile over the last two seasons. Poor old Wengo when he blamed Mother’s Day for a piss poor attendance. There was plenty of social media about not attending and so it worked out. If memory serves well he was gone within a few months of that. If the fanbase is pissed off enough you may well find a stay away game. The issue will be if Emery gets the team playing vibrant football with youths breaking into the side. What’s not to like? I think I’d have difficulty boycotting that

  45. Cyril

    Jul 19, 2019, 17:18 #114416

    Ron. What. Apart from the 30’s etc.... ! The same therefore can be said of Liverpool and Man U. We are 13 plays 18 plays 20. There are no other comparisons. We were the original Liverpool. They followed us and then Man U for owning a decade if you like. OK Man U went into the naughties as well. I’m damn proud of that team in the 30’s and so are you. No one else apart from the big 3 have done it so I don’t get your point. Every other team has spread out victories and no prolific periods. Man City may join that club . However, it seems a perjorative statement which points to being a one off when only 2 other teams who came after owned the period. I know you mean well Ron and love your stuff.

  46. itsRonagain2

    Jul 19, 2019, 16:29 #114415

    There is much merit in this article. Lets face it, London clubs fans are pussies when it comes to effecting change. Its true as well that SK will laugh at this letter writing and blogging. It is a bit pathetic. Empty seats and non renewals are the only factors to bring this owner to book. Those fans who have had enough shouldn't hesitate to draw a line under it.The article is fatally flawed though. Arsenal have been in serious decline since 2004, not since 2010 - from the the day Utd won game 50 and Wengo and his fellow sulkers in the team threw their toys from the pram. All downhill since. To be honest, the lask of a title challenge since 04 isnt really relevant. AF C Apart from those 5 or 6 years back in the 30s have never been serial title winners. Our titles are all spread out across the clubs history.

  47. Herd

    Jul 19, 2019, 15:40 #114414

    Harsh but fair although the online gooner mob have been questioning Wenger since 2008 and got louder by the year. The other groups deserve your ire far more

  48. TonyEvans

    Jul 19, 2019, 14:01 #114413

    Re my previous post - just to point out it wasn't intended as a Wenger rant, more a comment on us as Arsenal fans when it comes to issues of club manager or club ownership where direct supporter action is required to make the powers that be realise we ain't happy!

  49. TonyEvans

    Jul 19, 2019, 12:22 #114412

    Whilst not wishing to denigrate anyone associated with the Kronke 'open letter' I have to agree with this article - it's too little, too late for me. How Wenger was tolerated for so long by match day fans was, and still is, a complete mystery to me. Direct action in the form of mass boycotts was required at least 10 years ago, certainly after the 8-2 humiliation, but it never happened. There is no real precedent for this type of fan action at Arsenal - even under Billy Wright the empty seats were more about the standard of football being served up then any real concerted effort to force a change of manager / direction. Unfortunately it's not in our 'dna' unlike at Man U or 'Pool where Wenger would have been forced out years ago. The fact that Arsenal fans don't do more to demonstrate their feelings should not be seen as a source of pride (which seems to be the case for many) but more of shame that we allow our club to be shafted left right and centre by the likes of Wenger, Gazedis and Kronke and do f all to do anything about it.

  50. markymark

    Jul 19, 2019, 11:02 #114411

    I’m presuming this rage of yours has been building for a while , 10 years maybe? TBF the Gooner’s posters were pretty instrumental in arranging protests. Profuse apology to the chap ( perhaps someone can remind me ) but I know a contributor to this site kicked off the marches. If you look at the countdown , still 2 years ago Martin Keown was openly calling people stupid for daring to have anti Wenger placards. To sport them at the Emirates could result in physical violence , the Wenger boys were also lying to the media that WOB’s were attacking them . Go back 3 years and any anti Wenger opinion on the radio was attacked as being imbecilic. Wenger certainly had mates in the media. In fact a WOB’s best mate was the mouthpiece Sutton on radio 5 , who was one of the first to openly criticise Wenger. Now of course everyone can as its pundit safe to do so . So we’ve moved on . Most people on the Gooner get the issue with Wenger and Gazidis so perhaps try this article on Untold . Though they will ban you lol. The spotlight now needs to fall on the Kroenke’s. Can they actually deliver? Do they want to deliver ? The next 18 months is key I feel. Not being funny but I don’t remember you on this site previously? Up to May last year the Wenger Boy / WOB face off was legendary. It of course ended with total defeat of the Wenger Boys!