From The Outside, Something Doesn't Ring True
Firstly let me say I don't like Arsenal. It's not been a lifelong thing and I think it probably has more to do with the post Wenger era fans than some of the old stagers who are generally quite reasonable. Those fans who seem to think that Arsenal are some divine gift to wonderful football and should therefore not be judged like others.
The older fans remember 'Boring Boring Arsenal' and tend to be more reasoned about where you are now. (Indecently I remember watching Arsenal beat Chelsea 0-2 at Stamford Bridge about 10-15 years ago (Alan Smith was the player that stood out that day) and thinking men against boys then so last Sunday was especially sweet)
A big surprise on reading the programme on Sunday was your squad list. It seemed to go on for ages. Who are all these people? How many of them are genuinely good enough to start in the premiership for a top 4 team? At a guess, of the 30 plus names on that list only about half are genuine contenders for a starting place. You are rumoured not to pay the highest wages in the league but your total wage bill is still one of the largest, I presume therefore that this long line of people are all picking up a decent wage.
I know this is based on supposition but get rid of 15 of them, replace them with 6 or 7 experienced players and your squad is more balanced with probably not much more on the overheads.
Personally I think someone at your club is not playing fair with the supporters. Either there is a real cash crisis and Wenger has to balance the books and take profits where he can, in which case he is brilliant (but you are being lied to) or he has lost the plot and is being given an easy ride by the board, not having to win trophies. Either everyone at a high level has actually written this period off whilst the stadium is paid for (a valid strategy but you should at least be told in order to lessen expectations) thus setting up a base for the future or there really is money to spend which should not be lavished (no matter how good Arshavin is) on another identikit player when the actual requirements are glaringly obvious to all.
A couple of years ago we beat your kids 2-1 at Cardiff. Sitting on the bench or in the stands that day were half a dozen senior pros (Henry - Pires etc). Last year we beat you in the semi final. Your team was just as inexperienced but that was your first team, no better players sitting it out.
In my view you have not progressed but actually gone backwards which is a bit poor for a manager 10 years into his role with some kind of supposed grand plan. If this gets published I am sure some of you will resent it and slag me off for coming here giving my views but from the outside something just doesn't ring true