Surely, even in modern football, it can be about tradition, history, previous glory and a desire to return to those times. Can’t it? Please tell me it can, or the game truly has gone to hell in a hand cart, as the old saying goes.
Now is such a time for the new dynamic duo at Arsenal Football Club.
When your team is at the peak of the domestic game and knocking on the door in Europe, the sell is straightforward, the allure obvious. To be part of and improve on something already impressive. It is easy to add one of two to an already successful model and of course, copious amounts of cash make it easier still.
This is not Arsenal today, as it was Arsenal 20 years ago.
Yet what enticed Dennis Bergkamp to a struggling Arsenal and made him instantly fall in love with our club? It was the tradition and history of our institution and the way we have always done things. On arrival it was the likes to Geordie Armstrong, Bob Wilson and Pat Rice, the custodians of the ‘Arsenal Way’ that imbued this into Dennis as they had so many before and after.
So here we are in 2020, similarly placed to The Arsenal, Dennis joined in 1995. A Cup team with aspirations to claw their way back to the pinnacle of the domestic game initially, but with little money and competing on a severely unlevel playing field.
The custodians are different, but the belief and vision the same. There is no David Dein but there are now two gentlemen who are well equipped to sell Arsenal FC to top footballers, whether from abroad or from at home.
Our coach came to this club as a player because he understood what it meant to play for ‘The Arsenal’ and took a pay cut to do so. He captained the side to their first trophy in nine years and he knew just how much that meant to us all. Now he is a young coach, who is believed in my board, players, staff and fans alike, He is known over the globe, thanks to Pep, as a man who simply makes good players better. In short, the sort of coach, player who are serious about being the best they can be, want to play for. I trust this man to sell himself, his vision, the club’s aspirations and what it means to wear the cannon on the shirt to players he wants.
For his sounding board Arteta has Edu Gaspar as his Technical Director. Some suggest he is unproven for this role at club level and they may be right. However, similarly to Arteta, this is a man who had to jump through hoops to cross the world to play for this club. A man who whilst never the first name on Wenger’s team sheet was absolutely integral to a squad that won FA Cups, 2 Premier Leagues and went a season undefeated in the league. A man who knows what it felt be part of greatness at Arsenal Football club and yearns to help us get back to knowing feeling once more, knowing he war part of that transition. Another individual that hand on heart, I have no doubt, sat alongside Arteta, I would trust to do a fabulous job of convincing a mutually identified target to join us.
Don’t ask me for evidence to back up what my heart tells me but if you feel inclined join me on my happy train, head around Europe, stopping at transfer stations with Mikel and Edu as driver and guard, you are most welcome!
WE ARE THE ARSENAL!
Passionate fifty-something Arsenal supporter who has been making the journey to N5 regularly since the early 1980s – although his first game was in 1976. Always passionate when talking about The Arsenal, Dave decided to send a guest blog to Gunnersphere in the summer of 2011 and has not stopped writing about the Gunners since.
He set up his own site – 1 Nil Down 2 One Up – in February 2012, which he moved on in 2016 to concentrate on freelance writing and building Gunners Town, which he launched with Paul in 2014.
The objective of GT was to be new and fresh and to give a platform for likeminded passionate Arsenal fans wishing to write about their team. Dave still of course, writes for the site himself and advises the ever-changing writing crew.