Josh Kroenke Is Definitely Excited

Reflections on the interview between the son of Silent Stan and the BBC’s David Ornstein

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It’s all in the timing. Granted Josh Kroenke was in London for the match against Burnley, but I doubt he would have done the interview he did with David Ornstein (significantly at very short notice) either after the visit to Liverpool the following weekend, or if Arsenal had failed to beat Burnley. Currently we are on a high. Six points out of six, second in the table on goal difference and with the memory of signing some players fresh in the air.

Josh has decided that he is going to engage with the Arsenal fans in a way that his father never did. Stan spoke, poorly it must be said, at a couple of shareholder AGMs but aside from that, Arsenal fans have only ‘heard’ from him via the written word, more often than not in interviews arranged with the Telegraph’s Jeremy Wilson.

Josh however, is prepared to appear on camera. The cynic in me suspects there was copy approval required for his Saturday evening chat with the ‘Ornacle’ before it was transmitted, but I doubt Josh needed anything edited out. He is a far more eloquent speaker than his old man and knows the right things to say.

And Josh, yes, we want to be as excited as you, but that’s going to take a bit of time. Yes we are enjoying Ceballos and Pepe. We’ve not seen enough of Martinelli to pass judgement. Tierney of course is injured, but the strategy of buying a left back went down well. David Luiz is David Luiz, but hey, we bought a centre back! Mind you we did also do that in January 2018 and summer 2018 as well. The main problem does not seem to be a lack of centre backs but the quality of those we have (combined with the tactics that can leave them exposed). Although Luiz is a proven winner, so was Petr Cech.

The other thing that wasn’t mentioned is that although Josh was keen to state how much had changed since Arsene was booted out back in May 2018, the club was allowed to decline and reach the stage where a revolution was required under the watch of himself (a board member since 2013) and his father (add six more years to that). So yes, the changes are welcomed, but it was you guys who f***ed it up in the first place by being complacent and content with a top four place instead of a title challenging team. Hence the piles of unspent cash in the bank for a number of years. Anyone recall the summer of 2015? The one before Leicester went on to win the title. How many players did the club buy to improve their chances again? Josh: “I’ve been a part of meetings that were with Arsene Wenger and I’ve been a part of meetings now that include our head of football, our managing director, our head coach, our new technical director. It’s a different approach.” And that Josh (or anyone) didn’t pull rank in those meetings says so much about why Arsenal have ended up where they are now, overtaken by Spurs and Liverpool.

Josh mentioned he wanted those in charge of the transfers to “be aggressive” but there is no way round the fact that the net (actual) spend this summer was less than the mooted £44 million analysts estimated the club had at their disposal. Kroenke would have been better just praising his staff for performing miracles with what they had. At least he was savvy enough to admit it will take a few years for the fans to trust him.

Still, all things considered it was a good summer under the new regime. And it is surely better to hear from the owner’s son than hear nothing at all, not least because, presumably, Josh will inherit his father’s interest in the club. And we all hope he is right, and there is good reason to get excited, and that when push comes to shove the Kroenkes may actually put some money into the club. Okay, that last one’s a long shot. Exactly what does this mean to you… “We had instruments in place behind the scenes heading into the window where we knew we were going to be aggressive and we weren’t going to be reactive to anything, we were going to be proactive.” Instruments? What the hell does that mean?

Anyway, the less we have to talk about the Kroenkes, the more successful the season will be. Here’s hoping.

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7
comments

  1. itsRonagain2

    Aug 24, 2019, 05:09 #114652

    Given the exclusion from the CL cash for 3 years only a fool would say that AFC aren’t trying to make a good fist of it with what resources they have. I m far from convinced this squad can get 4th though. It’s not an imposing squad, physically or mentally it seems to me. It’s a nice squad with some skill and technical expertise of course, but is it a durable, rigorous squad able to tough out matches and refuse to submit? I don’t think so. It’s still looks lightweight to me. A dozen years of stagnancy and an inherent club culture more of a social / gentlemen’s club mentality isn’t going to be expunged in a season or 2. It ll take 3 to 5 years in my view and Emery won’t be there to see it through. He s stop gap, charged with getting CL football back. He may do that , he may not. It’s helpful Chelsea are where they are and Lampard doesn’t wholly convince either. I’ve met Derby fans who queried his methods and tactics. It’s a job too early for him I think. Can we compete with Utd? A big question that is. Not much between the squads but I think Utd are stronger to be honest despite the clear internal frictions there. I don’t think that shower of shite at N17 are far afront of AFC though despite the Poch loving media promoting Tottenham’s ‘ success’. They’re are likely to remain a few steps ahead of us though for this season at least , until they go flaky again and start to fall away at Tottenham always do. The signs are there now that the spud edifice is cracking. The description bridesmaid club was invented for them. Some things just ‘ are’ and Tottenham being an enigma and the 2nd North London Club is one of them. I think 5 th this Season. Possible top 4 next time.

  2. markymark

    Aug 23, 2019, 19:13 #114651

    Paul James - think your right mate and it’s far more balanced now. With Wengo we had one group the fanatical Wenger boys in complete denial , a middle rump who were saying “you know I still think he’s a great manager even if he is past his best and the WOB’s . If we think back even during the sad demise of GG nobody was really tearing into the club it was sadness but let’s move on. I think the balance is far more back in equilibrium now . The vast majority wish Unai every oppprtunity but if we don’t get 4th I’m not sure many will be wringing their hands. It will be disappointment but let’s move on with a new coach.

  3. Pauljames

    Aug 23, 2019, 16:59 #114650

    The squad looks stronger this season, and I’m not sure we’ll be able to blame the owners if Dick can’t get fourth with this group of players. Chelsea will invest heavily next season and there have to be major question marks over how good a manager Solskjaer is, so in that respect I think it’s this season or never for Emery’s Arsenal.

  4. markymark

    Aug 23, 2019, 05:36 #114649

    Wenger* - Freudian slip. Meant Ivan Gazidis

  5. markymark

    Aug 23, 2019, 05:33 #114648

    CG - I think suspicion with the regime is perfectly reasonable . Though I blather on it enough I’d still say that Raul and Vinai (spelling?!?) appeared 10 x better than Ivan and his tear jerker Arsenal charity videos. That in itself will help us move forward . Looks like Raul , Huss and likely Edu did more in one month than Wenger in 10 years. I also reckon they can impose a player on Emery and get it done. I’ve picked up 1 or 2 vibes that Dick has been kindly spoken to and maybe had a reminder of where he fits in the jigsaw . I suspect he’d have to win titles to seriously expand his boundaries of control. If I were Josh , probably not even 40 and handed Arsenal I’d want to prove myself. No doubt daddy has to have the run by , but I think we are seeing a more personable , has more grasp of social media presence and maybe just maybe more ambitious son. In an imperfect situation I am way more happier with the goings on.

  6. CORNISH GOONER

    Aug 22, 2019, 18:37 #114647

    Positive about the new regime but highly suspicious about this new improved version of the Kroenke Klan. I really Josh will be an improvement on his monster of a dad but no way can the pair of them be excused the years of neglect of their duties in the latter decade of Arthur. Does make one wonder if Stanley is really any good at running businesses - his smartest move was clearly marrying into the Walmart family. Most hilarious nugget of media information today was the news that Dick is teaching Pepe to speak english!! Those of a certain age would probably think it's a bit like hiring "Professor" Stanley Unwin to do the job.

  7. ArsenalMagna

    Aug 22, 2019, 09:55 #114646

    Did you see Josh also said we'll be 'proactive' in the Jan transfer window too? He also hinted that he's putting his own money in, though that is likely just tactical lying. This is ultimately to avoid bad publicity, to help our case with getting into the European Super League, or just to help our asset value for when he eventually sells up. In any case, thank the heavens we have a manager who, based on the last two games, is committed to having us play balanced football and get the best out of every player. With that in play, it means we can actually scrutinise the owners properly. I really believe we can get fourth place this year and build from there, but in fairness, the EPL top 6 should all get CL football. Teams like AEK Athens, Spartak Moscow etc. are head and shoulders below even the 5th/6th best EPL teams.