Do You Want To Cry? Then Watch This Arsene Wenger Video

As everyone pays tribute to what a great person and manager Arsene Wenger was and still is, I thought I’d share my all time favourite Arsene Wenger video, made by Vladislav Zimagulov.

For me, it perfectly sums up the great man, and how he brought some of the greatest experiences I’ve witnessed with the club I love so much.

And for that, I will always be grateful.

Thank you, Arsene.

The Arsenal Players Have Let Down Arsene Wenger Big Time!

I have started writing a post about Arsene Wenger’s departure from the club but that is still in progress and might take another day or two as I want to make sure it is fitting enough for a man who dedicated his life to the club and represents how I truly feel.

What I will say is that I can’t actually believe it has happened. Not finally happened, but happened. I fully expected him to fulfil his contract and be here next season – and then I thought he would possibly leave. But todays news is massive.

I’ll repeat what I put on Facebook and Twitter earlier today:

I can’t believe this has happened. I’ve supported Arsenal since 1988 so have only ever known two (great) Arsenal managers. It is a massive surprise this has happened now and I’m not going to say anything negative as he has done so much for the club. And I sincerely hope that’s how he will be remembered from now until the end of the season. All the best, boss.

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But The Guardian has posted an article on their website revealing that Arsene Wenger’s main motivation for announcing his departure today is because he thought there was a real threat that he might be sacked at the end of the season, so he ultimately decided that it was better to leave of his own accord rather than be pushed out the door.

And whose fault is that?

The players.

As Arsenal fans pay tribute to Arsene Wenger Day, celebrated with the hashtag #MerciArsene, it’s great to see fans, managers, former players and current players give loving messages to a man who wholly deserves them.

However, in all of this, the thing which is niggling me is the messages from current players.

Most of the current playing squad are paying tribute to a man they either don’t respect or don’t like, and are posting messages just for the likes.

It’s a disgrace and quite frankly all a big joke.

You profess your respect, admiration and love for a man who you couldn’t be arsed even trying for over the last 7 months? And you could say much longer for certain other players.

It just speaks of hypocrisy especially when you consider these messages are from people who have effectively got Arsene Wenger sacked.

Personally, it is an extremely sad day for me and I am really upset. Yes I knew this day would come but I’ve supported Arsenal since 1988 and only ever known two (great) managers. Arsene Wenger is a constant in an ever changing football world and he has dedicated his life to Arsenal.

It would always be a sad day when Arsene Wenger left the club and even though most of us thought it was about the right time, I don’t think any of us thought it would happen quite as soon as this.

All the best, boss.

#MerciArsene

Arsenal’s Inconsistencies Highlighted

In one way, this campaign appears typical of Arsenal’s seasons under Arsène Wenger over the last ten years – a slow start, leaving them with ground to make up, followed by an upturn in the New Year that sees them stabilise their position.

However, this time around, it feels different. For a start, the gap to the leading clubs is now too big to bridge, and for another, the recovery has started later, which means that there is little chance of cracking the top four. In order to snatch a Champions League qualifying place, the Gunners would need to win all their remaining games, and hope that two teams out of Chelsea, Liverpool and Tottenham go on a very bad run. That’s a combination of events that seems very unlikely.

According to the betting markets, things are unlikely to improve next sesaon. Arsenal are currently sixth favourites to win the Premier League and can generally be backed at around the 26.0 mark; a sad decline for a manager and a club that once challenged regularly for top-flight honours.

Inconsistency appears to be Arsenal’s problem. Whereas other top teams go on long unbeaten runs while losing the occasional game, Arsenal this season have blown hot and cold. Their longest run of what could be described as good form came between 3rd December and 3rd January when they went seven games without defeat, but that run included five draws, including dropped points against West Ham, Southampton and West Brom.

If their only defeats had come against top-five clubs, it would at least be a consistent picture of the level that this team has been at. However, while they have lost twice to Manchester City and once each to Tottenham, Liverpool and Manchester United, they have also suffered defeats against Watford, Stoke, Bournemouth, Swansea and Brighton.

The only hint of consistency from the Gunners this season has been their terrible away form. It took them until 22nd October to win an away game, and they’ve only won four out of 15 on the road so far. That’s a terrible record, but it’s also a symptom of one of their main causes of inconsistency – an inability to dig deep and battle. Away games at the “lower” clubs can be a physical and psychological test, and while Arsenal have always played good football under Wenger, they regularly fold when games turn into a physical contest.

That particular failing is partly down to Wenger. He could, after all, drill them to be as organised and resilient as Burnley, and he could have brought in one or two tougher players, but he hasn’t. Not only that, but Wenger has also been criticised for not being more demanding of his players. Watching them, you do not get the impression that they are frightened of the consequences of putting in a poor performance. When top players coast through games, they will sometimes be able to win on sheer talent alone, but often they will be outbattled by opponents who are giving their all.

Another way in which Wenger has contributed to their inconsistency is in his continual rotation of the squad and unusual selections, many of which have baffled fans and must be unsettling for players who don’t know where or whether they will be playing from one week to the next.

While their late surge may ease some of the pressure on Wenger, there is no reason to assume that next season will progress in a significantly different manner. If Arsenal are to leave their inconsistency behind next year, a new manager must be the summer priority.

Can Arsenal Finish In The Top 4 This Season?

After the emphatic 5-1 win against Everton, the immediate future anyway looks bright. We’ve got new signings Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang off to flying starts, with the Armenian notching up a hattrick of assists and the new forward scoring a debut goal.

Supported by the mercurial Mesut Özil and in form Aaron Ramsey, things are looking good for Arsenal.

But at the moment we sit 5 points behind 4th placed Chelsea although they have a game in hand. So as it stands it’s not impossible for Arsenal to nick that last Champions League spot – but it’ll be tough.

We of course have another route into the Champions League, via the Europa League – with a first round knockout game against Ostersunds FK from, erm… Sweden apparently.

It’s hard to decide which route Arsenal should focus all of their energies on, either 4th spot in the Premier League or lifting the Europa League trophy.

With the Premier League, we would be competing with Liverpool, Chelsea and Tottenham meaning that there’s only 2 spots available for 4 heavyweight teams. And with the Europa League, we would have to overcome European big hitters such as Borussia Dortmund, Athletico Madrid, Napoli, Lyon, Lazio, AC Milan, Marseille and CSKA Moscow.

So neither route is easy!

If you had to put money on Arsenal reaching the Champions League then your best bet would be via the Premier League. We’re only 5 points behind 4th spot at the moment and there are enough games to claw back that lead. But with the Europa League, there are too many variables and we’re without new signings Mkhitaryan and Aubameyang who are cup tied.

Thus said, Arsenal could cause a headache to those who would like to place a bet on them in future matches. But that’s the situation in online sports betting at this time, so if you need the best odds on betting, there are many sites such as BettingTop10 that give all the information you need plus the current special deals and free bonuses currently on offer.

If you ask me I have faith in Arsenal finishing 4th this season, only just though by the skin of their teeth! I can see some final day drama going on with that final Champions League spot!