last eight years have been tough. We’ve seen our beloved captains leave us,
performances slide and we haven’t won a trophy and every single team in the
Football League has changed managers, yet one.
Whether you are AKB, or WOB (if you are
unsure what these acronyms mean, check out @attwood10 ‘s column for
it doesn’t matter to me. If you respect my views, I respect yours and I have
had several debates on Twitter with fans in both camps and the conversation is
one that is always worth having.
There have been times, mainly in the last
two seasons when I have questioned some decisions Arsene Wenger has made and
even pondered if it was time for Le Prof to call an end to his 16-year tenure
with us, but the conclusion I always come to is that Wenger is the man for the
job. After all, without the man above, we wouldn’t have had our expectations
raised as high as they are today.
An important factor in Arséne staying on
with us, is his appeal to players. This is the man who got the best years out of
Thierry Henry, Dennis Bergkamp, Robert Pires and Patrick Vieira to name a few. He
also bought obscure players, often that English fans have never heard of and
turned them into world beaters – Freddie Ljungberg, Cesc Fabregas and more
recently Laurent Koscielny. Even players who have left us for (not so) greener
pastures are always extremely complimentary of our gaffer. Samir Nasri called Wenger “the greatest coach I have worked with. I only regret
not having more discussions with Wenger when I left [for Manchester City]” with
Cesc Fabregas stating “I would be nothing without him [Wenger], no world
champion, nothing. I talked with him a lot, his words will last me a lifetime.”
This year, Arsene looks set to make some big name signings, with Gonzalo
Higuaîn, Marouane Fellaini and Wayne Rooney top of his supposed list, while
remaining adamant that he will not be selling any of our top talent, as well as
trying to offload some of his flop signings such as Andre Santos, Park
Chu-Young, Sebastian Squillaci, Andrey Arshavin and Nicklas Bendtner.
If we can complete these signings, our squad will be in incredibly good
shape before the start of the upcoming season. I say this nearly every year but
this really could be our year. As I’ve already mentioned, every single team in
Professional English Football has changed their manager. I believe stability is
important in a football team, especially one as big as ours. People may argue
they’d rather have trophies and swap managers every couple of years than one
manager for 16 odd years and go through a dry spell. This would be fine and I
could accept this argument if the same people didn’t mock Roman Abramovich’s
reign as Chelsea owner and their management policies.
I believe that our club is being run the right way. Yes, in the short
term it is a hard pill to swallow and yes, I’d love to win something soon; but
in the long run this is the most effective way of ensuring that the club will
not be in any financial trouble in the future. Gary Neville summed it up
perfectly for me after the 1-1 draw with Newcastle United on the last day of
the season for Sky Sports in the clip below.
I am of the opinion that Arsene Wenger will go down as the best manager
of our club of all time – certainly of my generation. I admire the way he
conducts his business, amused as his cult classic coat and most of all respect
everything he has done for the club. Thierry Henry insisted he was “saddened” by
the criticism of Wenger and Freddie Ljungberg stated “He’s done remarkably well for a very long period of time and I think
with some certain economical restraints at times when they were building the
stadium. To still achieve what he’s done is actually quite remarkable”.
In Arséne I Trust.