Does Granit Xhaka have too much power at the club? Is he the ‘John Terry’ of Arsenal?

 
We know Granit Xhaka is hugely popular amongst the other players…

Since the start of the season, things have started to unravel at Arsenal.

Things weren’t great in the closing chapters of last season, when our Premier League form was disastrous and we somehow missed out on 4th place, after dropping points against teams we should have easily beaten – and then we collapsed in the Europa League final.

It all started when Laurent Koscielny went on strike.

When has a player ever gone on strike at Arsenal? We’ve had issues with players like Ashley Cole, Robin van Persie and Emmanuel Adebayor, but they’ve never refused to play or follow club orders. After 22 years under Arsene Wenger, this was a first and it was under Unai Emery.

With Koscielny’s departure, went our captain. And if losing our best defender wasn’t enough, it spawned another problem. Who would be the next Arsenal captain?

The fans seemed to have a good idea. We watch our team week in, week out, and some obvious candidates appeared. Rob Holding and Hector Bellerin would have been popular choices, and there were even shouts for players such as Lacazette and Aubameyang, who had a lot of fight and desire, and would lead by example.

But what started was one of the strangest things we’ve ever seen – Emery would conduct a players vote.

What now?!

Unai Emery couldn’t make a decision that a manager should be making, showing his lack of authority and lack of decisiveness in the process.

And the million dollar question, why is this?

We know Granit Xhaka was annoyed that Emery didn’t just name him captain as soon as Koscielny left, with the process taking a couple of months. It has been rumoured that Emery asked at least one other player if they would be interested in being captain but they refused, resulting in the captaincy eventually going to Xhaka.

The players vote resulted in Granit Xhaka getting the most votes, and it’s clear that he is hugely popular in the dressing room.

Who does that sound like?

John Terry.

Is it that Granit Xhaka has too much power at Arsenal? Here are the facts:

  • He is loved and respected by his fellow players
  • He refuses to apologise for his unacceptable actions, despite the club telling him he should do so
  • He won’t relinquish the captaincy
  • He has constantly undermined the manager
  • He always gets picked, despite being out of form

The last few weeks have been revealing. Emery has stated several times that Xhaka should apologise – Xhaka refuses to apologise. Emery hasn’t stripped Xhaka of the captaincy – because Xhaka wants to remain Arsenal captain. Xhaka has made mistakes and played poorly this season – Emery is too scared to drop him.

People have been quick to judge Emery and say that he lacks authority, but it appears to me that Granit Xhaka has too much power and has gone power mad. He is like a John Terry figure who for whatever reason, is loved by his teammates, apparently, and we know that some of the senior players went to his house after his outburst at the Crystal Palace game.

What will happen next between player and manager? Well if things continue as they are then it won’t be Granit Xhaka leaving, that’s for sure.

Do Arsenal have the worst supporters in the world? Do we need to change?

 
This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 26279512865_f22b42b6eb_k-1024x683.jpg
Sometimes players feel the strain…

The last few weeks have given Arsenal fans an opportunity to reflect on what is happening at the club.

We had a positive summer, brought in Pepe, Ceballos, Luiz and Tierney, and expectations were high. But we’re 10 games into the new season and even well before this point, the vultures (myself included) have called for Unai Emery to be sacked.

I have been vocal in saying that Emery should leave Arsenal. But that’s because I believe that he is struggling at the club and isn’t the right man to take Arsenal forward.

And in saying that, I haven’t been involved in broadcasting any personal abuse or attacks, or left any disgusting comments on the social media profiles of our players or manager.

There is a distinct difference between criticising a manager and player for under performing and not being at the required level, and that is what I have always done. But it’s another thing sending horrible, personal and disgusting abuse to them online – and there is a section of our fanbase who do just that.

But even though I’m not involved in any of the horrendous abuse both Emery and Xhaka have received, I still need to look at myself.

This is what I posted on Twitter last summer, when Arsene Wenger left the club and we brought in Unai Emery:

If Arsenal fans don’t give Unai Emery at least 2 seasons before criticising him, then they aren’t true Arsenal supporters:https://t.co/Qg467noNDC pic.twitter.com/X3pkZLv8sG— Mike (@afc4life_uk) June 6, 2018

What has happened to me?

When I wrote that status, my mind was clear. Arsene Wenger had left Arsenal and it was simple common sense that a new manager, whoever that was going to be, would need time to put his own stamp on the club and implement change. So why, barely after one season have I changed my opinion?

Should I get my act together and stand by my previous convictions?

In Emery’s latest press conference, it was difficult to watch. Here was a person talking about the Wolves match, who also talked about trying his best to get the team to play well and win back the support of the stadium.

And I think the big lesson Arsenal fans need to take away from the last month or so is that the manager, players and staff at the club are all human beings. There is no excuse to leave abuse online to anyone, whether they’re in football or not. We have become so used to social media that some people think it’s okay to send disgusting or vile comments online.

I’ve looked through the comments on Unai Emery’s Twitter and Instagram accounts, and the comments left on there are shameful. The same goes for the comments left on Granit Xhaka’s Instagram page. We all know Mustafi switched off comments on his Instagram page because all he was receiving was constant abuse.Paragraph

I think Arsenal fans have forgotten that we should support our team through thick and thin. The instant nature of Arsenal news and opinion has skewed the whole landscape.

Do you think fan favourites such as David Seaman, Lee Dixon, Nigel Winterburn, Tony Adams, Steve Bould, Martin Keown, Dennis Bergkamp, Ian Wright, Thierry Henry, Patrick Vieira, etc. never had a bad game?

People will remember that Tony Adams had all kinds of issues in the early nineties – imagine what his situation would have been like if there had been social media around? I would hazard a guess that he wouldn’t have come back like he did and win a further 2 Premier League titles and 2 FA Cups. In today’s society, he would have been abused, there’s no doubt about it.

And what about David Seaman? How would have fans reacted online to his mistake in the Cup Winners Cup final in 1995? He would have been vilified like Loris Karius was after his mistakes in a European final. And look where he is now, he was quickly shipped out of Liverpool and that mistake has defined his career.

We all need to think about social media in a more considered light and take a look at ourselves when using it. For Arsenal, there is a bigger picture and we should all be coming together to support the team and the club.

Who do you want as Arsenal’s next manager? Here’s the Top 10 contenders!

 

It’s clear to see that Unai Emery and Arsenal is a relationship that isn’t working.

When Unai Emery first came in, he talked a good game. Actually, scratch that, he talked a great game.

I remember when Ivan Gazidis revealed that Emery would be the next Arsenal manager, I was impressed with what the Spaniard had to say. He talked about having a detailed dossier on every Arsenal player, he talked about how he can improve each player and also discussed how Arsenal can improve overall as a team.

But since that faithful day 18 months ago, things have actually got worse. Much worse.

Under Arsene Wenger we were a free flowing attacking team, that couldn’t defend. Now, we’re a team that still can’t defend but now are sterile in attack. We have a player in Aubameyang who is a world class striker but he can’t score goals because he doesn’t get any service. If he was at Liverpool, Chelsea, Manchester United, Manchester City or even Leicester City, he’d be scoring at least a goal a game. Against Sheffield United and Crystal Palace, he’s been starved of any service.

It’s obvious things aren’t working out, and I would be stunned if Edu, Raul and the rest of the executive team weren’t sounding out possible replacements. They have to be surely?

And looking at the recent reports, there seems to be 10 names in the frame at the moment.

So below, I have listed the 10 managers who are rumoured to be on our radar:

  • Jose Mourinho
  • Massimiliano Allegri
  • Mikel Arteta
  • Thierry Henry
  • Patrick Vieira
  • Brendan Rodgers
  • Freddie Ljungberg
  • Rafael Benitez
  • Eddie Howe
  • Espirito Santo

But who would you like to see as Arsenal’s next manager? Leave your thoughts in the comments section below!

Arsenal collapse once again in Unai Emery’s last game as Arsenal manager

 
Yeah, I’m confused as well…

An entertaining game, ruined by Emeryball.

Arsenal went a goal down after Mustafi’s own goal, and to be fair to him it was unfortunate. The ball was fizzed in and there’s not much he could of done with it, well if it was anyone other than Mustafi.

Then Arsenal responded, and how. We equalised through Torreira and then Martinelli scored his usual brace to put us 3-1 up.

But the problem with 3-1 is that it means we have a 2 goal lead. And Emery’s speciality is giving away 2 goal leads.

Watford, Crystal Palace… and then Liverpool.

We went 4-2 up and then predictably, the score went to 4-4. And then we managed to go ahead with a Joe Willock stunner.

So in the 94th minute we were going into the quarter finals. But you know what’s next? This is Emeryball!

So obviously we concede right?

And then Liverpool scored all 5 penalties to win the shoot out 5-4, with Ceballos taking a truly awful penalty. And I mean awful.

So what do we take away from this?

Well first of all we took the lead at 3-1, 4-2 and 5-4 and couldn’t keep those leads.

And second of all… actually, I don’t care any more.

Unai Emery is ruining football for me. Tonight was the first time I enjoyed watching an Arsenal game in a long time but even then, having taken the lead 3 times we couldn’t hold on.

This is just becoming a joke, a nightmare which never ends. It’s like Unai Emery is trying to get sacked. It’s like he’s intentionally making the wrong decisions in every aspect of managing Arsenal for a laugh.

The worst thing about tonight for me was when he took off Mesut Özil after 60 minutes.

Are you kidding me!!?

He was by far our best player, our creative hub and made us tick.

Yet he’s taken off.

I am lost for words now and I’m praying that come the morning, common sense has prevailed and Unai Emery is no longer at our football club.

Why Jose Mourinho is the man to save our season and the perfect fit for Arsenal

 
The Special One…

I wrote a couple of days ago that the man to turn Arsenal’s fortunes around is Jose Mourinho. If you read the comments section, you will see the vast majority of replies (I think all of them actually) were negative.

Now, he’s emerging as the favourite to replace Unai Emery.

Should you just call me Mystic Mike from now on?

In a nutshell, here are the reasons why Jose Mourinho would thrive at Arsenal and bring us success (and a guaranteed Top 4 finish):

  • Proven winner
  • Excellent man-manager
  • Is tactically astute
  • Gets the best out of players
  • Will get the best out of Mesut Özil
  • Can coach defence

He’s available, has roots in London and can start straight away.

So what are Arsenal waiting for?

Fans who have concerns about his temperament have been watching Arsene Wenger far too long to realise there is more than one approach. Yes, Mourinho can be confrontational but he has also been proven to rally the troops, get the team together and give them that siege mentality, and most importantly believe that winning is actually important.

The last point is something that has been lost over the last 10 years, and it wouldn’t do us any harm at all to have a squad that actually values winning. How often have we been called mentally weak? How many times have we been told we don’t have any leaders?

Jose Mourinho, whatever you think of him, is a born winner.

Look at his first stint at Chelsea. That team was immense. Look at Porto – he won the UEFA Cup and Champions League with them against the odds. Look at Inter Milan – most of their squad cried when he left.

When he gets it right, Jose Mourinho is the best out there, and for me he is better than Pep Guardiola.

Mourinho has won the Champions League twice, both times with teams who were nowhere near being favourites in that competition. He’s won countless titles and has a more impressive trophy haul than Guardiola.

Guardiola has been at Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Manchester City – all of whom have had the most money and the most talented players. There’s no doubt he’s a talented coach, but he’s had far more resources and help along the way.

Mourinho has a track record of winning with any team, with any budget and with any personnel.

If the Arsenal board have any real ambition, they will seize the moment and bring in Jose Mourinho before the chance is gone.