The first in our Fan Contributor series aimed at providing a voice to the everyday supporter. Today KICK fan Collin Smith on Arsene Wenger and his need to step away from Arsenal. Do you want to contribute? Shoot us a note here.
By Collin Smith
Over the past two months Arsenal’s form has dwindled as it always seems to do at this time in the season. Their lack of world-class attack has seen a decline in the number of goals and therefore number of points taken. They have been knocked out of the FA Cup, the only competition they seem to ever win, by a newly promoted Watford team after dominating the majority of the game and are out of the Champions League after getting dismantled over two legs by Barcelona.
As an Arsenal fan it has become increasingly frustrating to watch the same thing every year. Arsene Wenger’s men keep performing worse and worse and Wenger himself seems almost invincible in his managerial position despite him not winning the league title in 12 years. This may be due to the fact that he always manages to qualify for the Champions League which Stan Kroenke, the majority shareholder in Arsenal, seems to be satisfied with because it generates the cash he wants.
The fans have become more impatient and most seem to want the Frenchman to leave but it won’t happen unless Wenger decides to leave himself. He is regarded too highly amongst the board at Arsenal to be fired. A manager of almost 20 years is hard to just sack, despite his record in recent years Wenger is a club legend and should be remembered and treated as such. Yet if he really cares for Arsenal he would walk away in realization that his style of football and skills with managing are not suited for the modern game.
Arsenal should not be playing counter attacking football. This style used to be effective in the 03-04 season where with the quality players we had it seemed like every chance generated was a goal scored.
It’s not like that anymore.
Arsenal lacks that quality from its strikers and usually need multiple chances to score. Counter-Attacking football only generates a small amount of opportunities, and good ones they may be, Olivier Giroud and Theo Walcott do not have the ability to finish these chances at the rate needed.
Yet this is the only style of football Arsene Wenger seems to know. He cannot recreate/regenerate a new philosophy after all these years, it is simply too late for that. But it is not only the style of football, it is the entire mentality of Arsenal that angers the fans. It seems as if they have no fight in them, as if they don’t even want to win. Nobody tracks back on defense, nobody turns and runs up field, everybody seems to look at someone else when something goes wrong.
This is something that comes from the manager who seems to have just given up completely. After the pathetic performance against Manchester United, Wenger said in his press conference after being criticized, “Do you know anybody who has qualified for Champions League more than me in my years of managing”.
Right there you are admitting that you think getting in fourth or any other Champions League spot is an achievement. That is when you know this manager has lost the plot. Once he recognizes or thinks that coming in a measly Champions League spot is an achievement you know he doesn’t have any desire to win the Premier League or any other competition.
Wenger, you are the manager of one of the biggest clubs in the world, how is this an achievement? Coming in fourth may be good enough for the owners Wenger, but not the fans. The owners don’t feel the passion and love that we fans do. They don’t spend their hard earned money to watch these gutless and heartless performances.
Who wants to spend one hundred dollars on a ticket to watch their beloved Arsenal lose to Swansea in a game that is necessary for the title race? Nobody.
Another point that should be brought up is Wenger’s lack of spending. This summer Arsenal did not buy one outfield player after Wenger insisted they had all that they needed. Yet now, when all of Arsenal’s players seem worn out or injured Wenger wants to use injuries as an excuse for why they can’t make a title push. This happens EVERY YEAR. You have to spend money if you want to win the title.
Arsenal has bought two players valued over forty million Euros in the years since he has last won the title. Clubs like Chelsea, Manchester United and Manchester City have all bought more than ten players each that were purchased for over thirty million Euros.
All of these teams have won at least one title as well. Is there a pattern here? Is it possible that spending money gives you a shot at the title? It seems like it. Arsene Wenger understands this but still doesn’t bother to buy expensive players. He stated after losing to Man United that the Red Devils have spent a lot of money and tried to use this as an excuse to losing to the worst Manchester United side in years.
All the fans know he has money at his disposal despite the greed from the club owners. The simple fact of the matter is that Arsene Wenger’s time at Arsenal is up. His team lacks the desire to win and his playing style lacks the ability to work in the modern game.
If Arsene Wenger respects this club as much as we as fans respect Arsene Wenger, he would step down from his position.