Arsenal could lose three stars and Arteta to the vultures; Spurs fans should not be so entitled

Arsenal's Bukayo Saka and Mikel Arteta Credit: Alamy
Arsenal's Bukayo Saka and Mikel Arteta Credit: Alamy

The realisation that Arsenal are more Porto or Ajax than Real Madrid or Barcelona is sinking in. And Spurs fans should be far less entitled.

Get your mails in to theeditor@football365.com

 

Spursy
I very nearly wrote in at half time in a rage after that first half.

Would have been a schoolboy error that one, that game wasn’t my first Spurs rodeo.

That first half was f**king terrible all the same. The ends can’t keep justifying the f**king means when it’s as dire as that. Ugh, I should be excited about going on Sunday after that but I’m just, well, I’m not.

God, I sound proper entitled don’t I.

COYS?
Jon (sweary and ranty today), Lincoln

 

Entitled Spurs fans should lighten up
Oh boy, if there’s one thing for certain, that 2-1 win last night was going to boil a lot of piss. And judging by social media, it’s literally all football. From the obvious Arsenal and Marseille fans, to Utd and Liverpool fans claiming ‘warra trophy’. There was even a Rangers fan having a pop. Rangers.

But even more laughably – Spurs fans weren’t happy with the brilliant result. And I find that incredible.

F365 summed it up quite beautifully last night with the reaction piece about the New Spursy. It might not be pretty but it’s bloody effective. It’s very Conte. And as a fairly long in the tooth Spurs fan that suits me fine. I’m old enough to remember Gerry Francis’ lovely hair bestriding the touch line, sending on Jason Dozzell as our impact sub. It’s a little unbelievable how entitled our fan base has become in a relatively short period of time.

And whilst chief moron Jason Cundy was doing his best to rile Jamie O Hara and anyone else who happened to be listening (me) on Talk Sport last night, he made a good point. We haven’t won anything for ages. We are fairly lucky to have Conte at the club (I’m sure the money helps), but actually aside from one major final, we’ve achieved nothing and so we really should be checking our privilege. There seems to be a noisy section of fans calling for Conte to go because *checks notes* we’re sitting 3rd in the league and are in the last 16 of the Champions League as group winners. All whilst not having a fully firing Son, and injuries to Kulusevski and Richarlison. We basically have one fit, if somewhat knackered Harry Kane to score goals. And we didn’t even need him last night!!!

I guess the point I’m making is this. Be grateful for what we have now, and be very careful for what you wish for. Yes, we currently only seem to want play for 45 minutes. Yes we have Emerson Royal playing for our club, and yes we seem to be kings of the last minute winner at the moment which is torture on the nerves. But it could be worse. A lot, lot worse. We could have Christian Gross managing us. And I’ve been through that already.

So enjoy it, laugh at it. Don’t take it so seriously. We’re going to be fine. It’s the destination not the journey that counts with Spurs.
Andrew, Spurs fan. 

 

One thing we learned
The game was in many ways meaningless, but that was a lot of fun.
Aidan, Lfc (just enjoying the journey)

 

The best-laid plans of mice and men (and FSG)
Given they’re the crisis club du jour, there’s a lot of chatter about Liverpool at the moment, and who or what is to blame. Obviously, as a United fan, it’s hilarious, but there is one point I haven’t seen raised anywhere; the impact of Covid on FSG’s transfer plans.

You see, I’m convinced that Liverpool were planning to cash in on one of Salah or Mane in the summer of 2020; given their age and contract status at the time, their value would’ve been at its absolute peak. Either one would’ve been bringing in circa £100m from a PSG, Barca or Real. Just as with Coutinho, that money would’ve been pumped back in to the team in the form of 2 or 3 astute signings.

But then Covid happened, and no one outside of England had any money. Then, by the time it was over, these premier assets were 30 and on short contracts, and thus worth a fraction of what they previously were. What’s left is an ageing team that’s run out of gas.

I should have sympathy, because the timing of Covid caused United the same problem with Pogba, but nah… it’s Liverpool. You love to see it.
Lewis, Busby Way

 

Arsenal fan fearing the hyenas
Right now, Arsenal are experiencing a little purple patch, something that reflects really well on our players, our manager and our club. Patience, a word little used in football, is seemingly being rewarded. However, it also opens us up to a reality of football, something that has always been true, but is even more true now. That football is hierarchical, and there are layers to it.

Arsenal, once on the bottom rung of the top table, are now probably a few rungs down, and as such, regardless of our historical prestige, or current performance, we are not at the top table with the petro-clubs or the European elite (this is probably why they were eager to be part of the Super League). As a result, we are like carrion, ripe for picking apart by vultures.

Already our young stars like Saka, Saliba, Martinelli et al are probably receiving offers and whispers from those larger clubs about how they will be the crown jewel in their rebuilds, and now our manager, who we backed and believed in, is being touted to fix the sh*t show that is Barcelona. Real apparently want Jesus now, as if football is pokemon and you just collect the best ones and win.  As an Arsenal fan, this worries me, because I fear we won’t be able to even see the potential of this team as it is devoured by hyenas. I guess this is what it must feel like to be either a fan of Porto, or Ajax, or one of those other clubs that invest in their youth and try to achieve things within their own means.

I know this is the reality, doesn’t mean it doesn’t suck.
John Matrix AFC

 

Jesus is clear of Auba
Hi there,

Some belated thoughts on Arsenal strikers, new and old.

Despite completely polar opposite results, I enjoyed watching Jesus against Southampton as much as I did against Nottingham Forest. Why? Because he creates his own magic. He’s a genuine grafter. He chases everything down, and when he gets the ball, you feel as if anything can happen. It’s a big part of the reason that the Arsenal fanbase have found their voice again.

Before I compare him to Auba, let me caveat by saying he will go down as one of greatest ever Arsenal strikers, and played a critical role as we tried to keep pace with the big 6 in the post-Wenger era. But he relied on those around him to create magic. As he entered his thirties, I expected almost nothing from him every time the ball was played to his feet. From a tactical point of view, this significantly stifles our ability to play through the defence. Football is played in triangles. With Auba involved in the build up, it’s less of a triangle and more of a blunt line. The only thing left is his ability to put the ball in the net, and if his game against RB Leipzig last week was anything to go by, that’s slowly deteriorating as well.

Auba will always have a fond place in the hearts of Arsenal fans, but I feel Jesus is such a significant upgrade. I know many felt we should’ve got a replacement in January, but Jesus was worth the wait.
Pany Koizi (just a small town boy with a man crush on Jesus)

 

Sticking up for Solskjaer
I know people like rewriting history to win an argument, but those calling Ole the worst manager of all time, and terrible in the transfer market, should maybe have a little think. But before we dive in, let’s first be clear: he wasn’t a good coach. He did have a lot to do when he came in though, and successfully fixed a lot of things that he inherited in a bad way.

The big transfer spending for which he is beaten of are mostly for Sancho (who he barely got to work with and remains an excellent purchase), Maguire (yep, that was a mistake, although maybe the scouts who were since sacked off have their hands more dirty on that), AWB (who isn’t nearly as bad as people suggest), James (who the club made profit on and was only a fill in for Sancho), Bruno (who isn’t anything but a successful signing), Cavani (another success), Varane (ditto), Amad and Pellestri (signings for the future, nothing wrong there), Telles (who did his job as a backup and in pushing Shaw to step it up), VdB (bought because Pogba was expected to leave and we couldn’t get De Jong) and Ronaldo (who Ole had nothing to do with signing).

Seem to remember him also finishing his second full season ahead of Liverpool. Hmm, worst manager of all time? In his 2 full years, he got to second in the league (3rd the year before) and the final of the Europa. It took Klopp 3 full years and buying an entirely new team to win his first trophy and reach the same heights in the league after two previous 4th places. One might also suggest that taking a team of misfits you inherit to decent finishes is a tougher challenge than buying a new one.

Not to say that he’d have reached the same levels as Klopp (although that benchmark is not exactly super high), but he was at least on the same trajectory. All we need to complete the comparison is for Liverpool to end the season outside the top 5. Nah, that would never happen (again) under Klopp…
Badwolf

 

Window shopping
Why don’t they have Manager windows in the same way there’s transfer windows? It’d stop all this ridiculous knee jerk reactions to a few bad results (talk of Klopp being replaced?!?), would make owners a bit more accountable for the people they hire and stop clubs having their manager poached at any point during the season.

Can anyone really perform to their best when you’re on death row, with a manager window at least you know you’ve got a finite time to get things on track.
Martin Milkbread

 

Crooks of the matter
Dear Football365,

Far be it from me to suggest that simply picking players who scored for his team of the week means Garth Crooks doesn’t do much research, but there is a bit more to his comments on Australia.

I don’t know much beyond what I have briefly researched and heard during finals day of the Indoor Cricket World Cup (it’s best if you don’t ask). Since Reconciliation Week 2019, sporting events have been preceded by the Acknowledgement of Country, or Welcome to Country, the text of which is broadly this:

“I wish to acknowledge the Traditional Owners of the land on which we meet today and to pay my respects to their Elders past, present and emerging. I wish to also recognise the outstanding contribution that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people make to sport in Australia and to celebrate the power of sport to promote reconciliation and reduce inequality”.

This isn’t to say that it makes up completely for everything that came before, but it’s a fair observation that paying respects to someone is better than saying nothing.
Ed Quoththeraven

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