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In Defence Of Wenger

We love to compare in England., compare the market, gocompare, The French can take their food, the Danish their health care, high average wage, overall contentment with life. Can they compare?

Just look at TV - channel 4 run whole nights devoted to comparison. 100 best magicians, 100 best flavours of crisps, 100 best 100 best shows. The whole nation loves to look at other people. I came home once to find my house mate, pants round his ankles, watching naked girls on his laptop and grunting "oh yeah, compare those coffee filters you dirty b*tch, tell me which makes the best espresso, mmmmm, you love it."

Henry Winter wrote a whole column of comparison in The Telegraph last week. He stated Alex Ferguson "takes action in private," without making a single reference to masturbation, yet claimed that Wenger "loses friends and credibility by defending the indefensible." The Man United, Liverpool loss when players were ordered by "the arch realist" (Henry`s quote, not mine) not to speak to the media must have passed Mr Winter by. Likewise I missed the interview when Wenger claimed child pornography is 'nothing major in France, the kids love it, we give them bananas,` but I`m assured by The Telegraph that Wenger lost 200 facebook chums overnight.

The BBC is great isn`t it? They love to compare, compare two sides of an argument. Present everybody`s views? After the Spurs game they had 6 callers, 4 tweets and 4 texts. Each of the senders expressed disappointment with Wenger. I rang 606, tweeted them twice and sent a text. Each time it was to defend Wenger. Each time I was ignored. When I rang I was told verbatim "Hmmm, We`ll ring you back if that fits with our message." They didn`t ring me back.

It`s OK though, Robbie Savage has the answer; Chris Samba. Wonder why the double winning, Invincible creating manager didn`t think of him before? (Author`s note: some writers may have chosen to have added a punch line here, but I realise you`re smart enough to know that the centre half and captain of a defence with a worse defensive record than Wigan is clearly not good enough for a top side.)

It makes it difficult for the BBC to speak of Wenger being "stubborn" and "bias" when they refuse to entertain anybody who might suggest Wenger`s record isn`t too shabby really.

One of the texts that was printed by the impartial, all representing BBC was sent by 'Jack`. He said "Is it too much for Arsene to hold his hands up and say both teams gave everything? Just a thought." Arsene spoke, to the impartial, never judgemental, always taking our money, BBC, after the game: "We both played and attacked... No complaints ." Maybe listen to the interviews before judging post match quotes eh tw*t? ... sorry Jack. See, easy done this misquoting lark.

According to the BBC "Arsenal fans are getting impatient with Wenger." Just a thought, just a comparison, but in 2004 Newcastle fired Bobby Robson. The awful seasons under Robson saw United finish 4th (having been bottom of the league), 3rd and 5th. That dreadful performance saw him fired due to Freddie Shepherd getting "impatient." Turned out to be a shrewd move, they would have never won the Championship title without it.

At the start of this season Arsenal were predicted to finish, by various all knowing, all impartial BBC pundits, 5th, 4th, 5th, 4th. Strange that a side that will finish 1st to 3rd would be described by the same all knowing, all impartial BBC pundits as 'chokers,` and 'not mentally strong enough.`

Club captain Fabregas even weighed into this debate saying (although badly translated, so he may well have been ordering take out) "If you went to Spain and said to ... Unai Emery they would have 3 years without a trophy, it would be obvious they would not continue." Emery has been at Valencia since August, since then he`s won ... zero trophies. 2011 - 2008 is 3. 3 years without a trophy. P45 on its way to Mr Emery; it would be obvious.

In late 1989 fans at Old Trafford hung a banner that read "3 years without a trophy a still crap, Ta ra Fergie." Later that season United won the FA cup to win Ferguson a cup after 4 years. It took until 1993 for them to win the league. Just a thought, just a 7 year comparison.

When the BBC open their shows with supporting fans and the headlines 'Wenger is past it,` 'Wenger is too stubborn,` 'Wenger didn`t tip well in a restaurant` they may do well to remember what the point of professional football is. The doubles were good, the Invincibles were better, but it`s about being entertained. Arsenal have entertained, and continue to entertain, and no matter what ignorant pundits may say, people do remember being wowed.

I`d love to hear Alan Shearer recite any of the starting XI of the Germany and Argentina World Cup winning teams of 1974 and 1978, yet everybody knows total football, the Cruyff turn, Bergkamp trapping a 5km long pass to scored against Argentina. Beautiful football sticks in the memory like Dennis taking 1st, 2nd and 3rd place in goal of the month from 1 hat trick against Leicester.

A last comparison: Imagine the country, financially speaking, being run in the same vein as United, Chelsea or City; a debt equal to total value, a single man propping everything up. Now imagine a country run for the last 15 years like Arsenal. Not spending money that doesn`t exist, saving for major investments, letting young people show what they can do before replacing them instantly.

Yes Birmingham, Tottenham and Portsmouth have won more trophies over the last 5 years, but have they sat on the edge of their seats, mouths wide and hands clapping involuntarily at the majesty of the art before them? Do they have a structure that is the financial envy of all those around them? Can they all honestly expect to be challenging for more trophies over the next 10 years?

Only when the answer is yes; only then should we compare Wenger to other managers.

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The Journalist

Writer: Lewis Wright Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Wednesday April 27 2011

Time: 12:04PM

Your Comments

Financially, we're incredibly successful, we generate massive income. We were just unfortunate enough to have to business men buy the club with money they never had. A debt free United is a cash cow, the Glazers know this. I see the point you're getting at but unfortunately there is no defence for Wenger. He has failed, yet again, to fix the issues presented to the club season after season. Fancy football is great on the eyes but seeing your team pick up a trophy is even better. I also feel there's massive flaws with your arguments. Cesc wasn't wrong, if a Barca or Madrid manager went 3 years without a trophy would they still be there? It took Fergie 7 years to win his first title the difference is, Fergie had no foundations laid down in the way Wenger currently has. As for Samba, he's a marvelous defender and Blackburns defensive record can't be blamed on one man, there's so many variables to take into consideration that it's naive to suggest that he's not a good defender based on goals conceded. As for the pundits saying you 'choke' and don't have enough 'mental strength', has the Arsenal squad done anything to prove them wrong?
Comparisons are part and parcel of any process of judgement but in football management rarely valid. What's the point of comparing Fergie and Wenger? They've both done different jobs with different resources! Would Wenger have achieved as much as Fergie over the same period of time with the same resources? There has to be a good chance that he would. Could Fergie have generated the revenues while using the more limited resources available to Wenger over the last 15 years? There has to be at least some doubt about that. Robbie Savage says we need Chris Samba and Lee Dixon says Clarence Seedorf we should be peeing ourselves with laughter not seeing comments like those as serious criticism or advice for Wenger.
Sorry Lewis, what is this article about! Every man and his dog know that we lack the ability to kill a game off, is this due to "a young squad" or "inexperience" or have we just got too many average players. Wenger is a fantastic manager, and personally I would not want him to go, but he is very stubborn and needs to swallow some self pride, admit that certain players are not good enough and replace them!
Agree with your point about entertaining football. What annoys me is the fact that Sky et al have succeeded in making so many Arsenal fans believe otherwise. I'm frustrated we haven't lifted a trophy, but its not the be all and end all.
Ultimately, I want Arsenal to play beautiful football AND win trophies. Iím sure Wengerís vision is the same but we are falling short for a number of reasons and he needs to fix that. There is no shame in reaching for the stars but a little restraint and contemplation is needed when deciding the best way to get there.
Sir Henry
Am i the only one that actually thinks this is actually quite a good thought provoking article? There are a lot of points i agree with you on this and a lot that will raise much debate. I like your analogy to fergie waiting 7 yrs for a trophy etc... but as thefamousnumber7 says wenger inherited the best back 5 ever to play as a unit in this country...without those foundations would we have won what we won under him.....Amos makes a great point about samba you cannot judge one man on a teamís performance...ukgooner is also right that there is a lot of dead wood happy to collect 50k a week or more then bugger off and not care....Meetthegunners is right as well, sky drum it in to us day in day out, its propaganda and i do not care what anyone says the majority fall for it to a certain degree, look what can be achieved by it, how did Hitler get away with what he did PROPOGANDER. And every arsenal fan will agree with Sir Henry, we ALL want to be playing the football we play but we all also want to have a trophy at the end of the season so we can give some stick to guys at the office and know it was all done with the right brand of football. England in my opinion has now become a breeding ground for people that want it all so quickly and for very little effort, the Jade goodys of this world prove that. What do girls want to grow up to be nowadays, not vets or doctors but Jordan and page 3 girls, Its easy money and a fast buck. this is transcending into football fans across the country!! This country has the media to thank ( and Gordon Brown ) for the ***** we are now in!
"people do remember being wowed." - "but have they sat on the edge of their seats, mouths wide and hands clapping involuntarily at the majesty of the art before them?" - Arsenal haven't "wowed" or made anyone sit on the edge of their seats with mouths wide and hands clapping at any magisterial art for most of 2011 - certainly not in the last several games. To the contrary. Most of what we see is lots of boring, slow, ponderous possession and failure to take chances. What we see is that Arsenal need more than 3 SOG to score one goal while our opponents need much less. I used to go on and on about how the media trashes our club, our players & Arsene but I'm pretty bored with that now - this article is just one among a ZILLION Arsenal blog posts and comments that go on about how bad the media punditry about our club is. Big whoop, what else is new. Boring. It's a convenient diversion from focusing on real issues confronting Wenger and this team. Like the fact that--unlike AW's earlier teams--this team is totally CONSISTENT now in every end-of-season run-in -- consistent in drawing & losing games, dropping points. Wenger's teams used to finish strong--now every season they finish like consistent losers, scraping to finish 3rd or 4th, looking over our shoulders, worried about finishing out of the top 4. Maybe we should compare real issues facing this team & not the convenient, boring and stereotypical trashing of the media. Arsene always talks about CONSISTENCY as the defining factor of any team and he's absolutely right. So let's focus on things we're consistent in over the last 4-6 yrs -- good and bad. That's an article of comparisons I'd like to see.
I understand the affection we have for the 'famous five' but they 'only' helped win us the first double - even then only Winterburn and Seaman were almost ever present - Adams, Bould and Dixon missed up to a third of the season. They didn't play any meaningful role in the second double, or any role at all in the invincible season or subsequent FA Cup win - so I think it's fair to nail the myth that Wenger achieved what he did because of the veteran back line. It would be much closer to the truth to say that they only achieved what they did under Wenger because of Wenger.
Fair point Amos....i was not saying they were my opinions just those that have been thrown out there by many arsenal fans on blogs like this. I think the signing of Sol was HUGE at a time we needed a defender like that. It is very much the same situation now, we need someone now as we did when we signed him. these are my opinions; We as fans in general are so frustrated as we always get so close and bomb out at the very end, it has been that way for the past 6 yrs. We always get more injuries than any other team in the EPL and usually for a longer period of time at more important periods in the season to our most important players. This makes it vital to have a very strong and deep squad, this is def lacking. Denilson has given his development up and settled for 50k+ a week as a backup for song rather than fighting for his position, diaby is exceptionally talented but way to inconsistent and sometimes appears not to actually have a brain, eboue for back up at right back is a joke as all he wants to do is go forward. Bendtner gets a hard time in my opinion as he ALWAYS gives 100% but he donít help his own cause by stating he should be playing, but he may have a point as the 451 formation clearly does not work. AW is only sticking with 451 as he donít know who to play in midfield as we canít leave out song or fabregas and then he wants to play wilshere nasri as well and that unbalances the side, so the only way to have them all playing is 451 with Walcott thrown in to that formation as well or arshavin. But it is leaving RVP isolated upfront. It is a headache most managers would welcome wilshere or fabregas humm.... which to play today but Wenger insists on playing them both and it does not work!! What is going to happen when Ramsey is totally back and fit??? Where is he going to fit in??For these reasons i am convinced that fabregas will be on his way this summer and we will have ramsey and wilshere as the creative midfield duo. We need to have more pace in the side, Walcott is the only one attacking wise that has pace that scares players, if we could pick someone up like neymer who is quick, skill full and can shoot that would be great. But as I already stated we have an abundance of midfielders to choice from and some of those would have to go. I like arshavin but I think his age has already caught up with him, he has bulked up too much for the EPL costing him extra pace, and the self confessed bad trainer needs to start training harder to keep at this level, ie Ryan Gigs. So maybe i would welcome arshavin out and neymer in. I also think we need a viera style player in our side coz diaby certainly is not him. Felani of everton will sound like a controversial call but if you can have a look at the way he played against us at home this year, the man was everywhere. After this I paid particular attention to actually focusing my attentions on him in the next games everton played and in my opinion he was man of the match in the everyone! He is strong, tall, skilful and would be great against teams like stoke. Song and Felani could share that role keeping it fresh and change it to suit the teams we are playing. We also need a striker that is tall, quick, skilful and strong. An even more controversial comment.....Adebayor woulda been perfect for us this year!! Who can we get that is like him? 12M is being splashed around as the price that real would have to pay City for him....could arsenal fans and RVP welcome him back for the greater good of the team??? Or would a return for him be a disturbance in the dressing room? let me know what you think. This is not criticism of Wenger, but these are my thoughts on how Arsenal could be strengthened. I love Wenger and what he has done for this club but I do think he needs to look at a few issues.
"What we see is that Arsenal need more than 3 SOG to score one goal while our opponents need much less." Not according to the opta stats they don't. Arsenal currently have the highest shots on target of any club in the PL (209) and the second highest overall (428). Only Chelsea have more overall (472) but Arsenal have the highest accuracy 49%. Most of the top teams have a similar conversion rate of goals to SOG - just not true to claim there is any great defect there. "Most of what we see is lots of boring, slow, ponderous possession" Again just not true - nobody in the PL passes the ball as accurately or as quickly as Arsenal. Whether you find the possession boring or not is subjective but slow and ponderous it most certainly isn't.
Agree with you again amos, it is just lazy comments by certain fans that are frustrated. It may sometimes be ineffective passing as we just cant break down a 10 man defence but it is not slow or inacurate on the whole. But this is where i think we need to have a plan B against sides that do just come and park the bus! and right now we dont.
I completely agree with jalle. The debate is always taken to extremes by both sides whether Wenger should stay or go, rather than focus on what Wenger needs to do to fix the mistakes (and no, I'm not talking about signing world class players). There is an issue with certain aspects of Wenger's management and those are the issues that need attention. This side has faltered in the last 3 seasons during Feb-Apr, the critical run in. What is the reason behind that, and how can Wenger fix that? If someone can articulate that (and LD has tried doing that), then thats a debate worth having.
I agree that we have faltered during feb to april. Take this year for example, we had to play without the ENTIRE SPINE of our team. No Goalkeeper, no 1st 2nd or 3rd choice Centre back, no Fabregas, Song, Walcott and no RVP. That is going to hurt ANY side not just arsenal. Thats basically ther entire 1st team. I do think it is harder for us as our squad needs a lot of strengthening in my opinion but you have to admit thats hard going. Hence in my previous comments about giving the manager a headache with selctions.
Amos - boring, slow, ponderous possession is not the same thing as inaccurate passing. I know what I see with my own eyes. Unless you have a stat that shows the mph of each pass of all the PL clubs?
It isn't really possible to compare seasons entirely satisfactorily because we don't play the same teams in the same periods each season but it isn't true that we've always flopped in the last 3 seasons between feb-apr. The biggest drop in points per game in that period was in 07-08. In the following season we increased the average points per game between feb-apr. In the last two seasons including this (so far) we've shown only a very modest drop in points per game. Look at the same periods even during Wengers trophy winning seasons and you'll see similar patterns in groups of games. There really isn't anything 'consistent' about these so called 'capitulations' at all.
You only know what you think you see with your own eyes vin. Arsenal makes 4.64 succesful passes per minute. Chelsea 2nd with 4.4, ManU 3rd with 4.2 and Man City 4th with 4.0. Nobody passes more frequently, more accurately or quicker than we do.
A lot of those passes can be 5 yards, sideways, and sometimes for the sake of passing, Amos. For me, there's no doubt that we over-pass the ball and are ponderous in possession. It can also be boring to watch as a long ball game. We used to be a very efficient passing side under Wenger's more successful sides.
I'm not trying to tell you what you should or shouldn't find boring. As I said that's subjective. Like all data the passing stats might not say too much on their own but they do belie the proposition that our passing is slow and ponderous. But as you say they could all be unproductive negative passes so they will have more meaning if you join them up with other data. If you were to join them up with the data provided earlier that only Chelsea have more shots overall and nobody has more shots on target than we have plus the data for goals scored then it would be hard for anyone, no matter how entrenched their views, to argue that our passing stats can be attributed to negative passing to any serious degree.
Quality stats Amos. To ********ise a chant 'Are you Opta in disguise?' The biggest point I was trying to make with this article is about short termism and how damaging it can be. People on the Football focus sofa all say how short termism is terrible, but then go along with the idea that Wenger's time is at end. Is it wrong to expect better from the BBC?
The quality stats comment was sincere. I love a good stat. Just read it back and it appeared sarcastic, but I can assure you it wasn't
Stats can often say anything you want them to. Results are what matter. This team doesn't lack talent or arguably even application. It does lack belief. You really cannot quantify that in a stat. I agree with Wenger that the problem we have is down to the fact that few of our players have the experience of winning trophies. If there is one area of criticism that could be levelled at the manager its that he has taken the importance of this too lightly over the past few years, playing very young teams without a good balance of more experienced heads.
Wyn Mills
Having just watched R.R. play Barca, comments made by people with an understanding of football show how AW knows without doubt how to beat Barca. My faith in the man has never faulted,The I kept wondering if the EPL finished at Easter because he is forever being crucified. I've read articles from jlh4e and jaelle who normally write insight and interesting comments but boy have you two jumped on the bandwagon in condemning both the manager and the team. Sensible comment and debate from the leading lights on this blog such as LD and Amos are treated with utter disdain; why they bother to write in defense of the team to what I consider IMHO ill informed anti Arsenal nutters really escapes me. When this is combined with members fans of our great club well and truly escapes me. Its useless in trying to explain What is was like before BM GG, because everyone who rubbishes AW knows it all. I hope AW stays with this club a long time to come at least the next seven to eight years, but I really fear the media and the plastic fans may win and as they say off with his head. I too hate to see my team lose, hoped like mad we would win a trophy this year but it will come and when it does it will be with AW in charge.
Sorry should have been R.M not RR
A good article. I agree with many of the points. However, Wenger has been making errors of judgement for too long and someone needs to sit above him and override him when he errs or Wenger needs to change his way of thinking. Squillaci and Kosc to supplement TV5 and JD is lacking in proven leadership. Keeping Almunia because you wouldn't spend the extra 2 million on a Schwarzer or a Reina the year before. Not buying Alonso because you have faith in Denilson and Diaby. Not buying a centre back in January of this year. Not buying a centre forward in January of last year. Paying Vela X$ when he has done nothing. Paying Bendtner X$ when he has done nothing. Paying Denilson and Diaby X$ when they have done nothing. Paying Adebeyor and Almunia top tier wages when they are not top tier players. Losing all of our experienced players since the Invincibles Years - Pires, Campbell, Lauren would have provided invaluable experience. Not resigning Vieira in 2008/09. Not teaching team defence adequately. Not having a tough tackling midfielder who makes other teams wary of staying on the ball. All are obvious errors of judgement, all have been costly.
Playing style is important, but not when it comes at the expense of performance. If we keep playing this football but lose every clutch game, we are no better than Keegan's Newcastle - an attractive but flawed side.
I for one would love to have Samba at Arsenal, I've coveted him since his first season in England. Blackburn actually have 2 cracking central defenders in him and Nelsen; their defensive problem is mostly that the rest of their team is complete pants, and thus they are constantly being bombarded. I think Samba would be ideal alongside a quicker, ball-playing CB like Vermaelen/Djourou/Koscielny. Plus he's a leader and has the kind of fight that most of our players don't, for all their talent.
alwaysgunner, most managers know how to beat Barca it's hardly rocket science, it's just a whole new challenge getting on the pitch and actually doing it.
TFN7, would you not agree if your opinion is as simple as you say then we were in a position to exploit that game plan we had the ability and the player still for some unknown reason the ref suddenly sends RVP off (kicking the ball 1 second after the whistle had been blown) ? Notice the game against Barca by R.M player sent off ditto. Once yes but twice when in other games it would have been a yellow for the offense.
Our problem is, as JLOWEP said, we don't have a plan B when our quick passing game and through balls don't work. I think we need a powerful Drogba type striker to get on the end of crosses so teams don't try and defend so deep against us.
Point being alwaysgunner? Sounds like you're agreeing that getting on the pitch to beat Barca is harder than developing a plan to beat them, which is pretty much what I said. I'm simply pointing out that knowing how beat Barca is no remarkable feat.
TheFamousNo7, i have always known you to be a very reasonable person to debate with. Take a look at what Wenger is doing, i.e makes profit off the team sales and still contend every year for the title. I know he has not won it, but we are no Villa or Everton. Can you imagine if the board has the money to spend and we spend it? Wenger knows his team and he knows the good, average and the bad ones, but the constraint has been FINANCES. Why did he Chamack for free and never competed for Dzeko? When VDV was available, he could not sign him because of his salary that will be added to what is he has presently. He went for Squillaci for 3Million instead of an 15million Cahill as the 3rd or 4th CB, these are all about money not that he can't coach anymore
JLOWEP - Your arguement is like 1+1=2. What happened to the unknowns. Like would we get Neymar for the say price we will sell Arshavin and would he collect same wage as Arshavin? The better players not only collect huge weekly wages but also cost me in transfer. Can arsenal fans think about this before they open their mouth? Do they know what we call B U D G E T ING? Do they know if Diaby is sold for less than 5million, we can get a better for same wage and transfer fee? Do they even think of Nasri asking for more money, how that will affect the budget and how it will affect signing better players that cost more money in transfer and Wages . All these are done on the same budget. Do they know if we've even reduced our budget on players? I hate it when people complain on why we are not signing. These are the constrains. Wenger used to buy the expensive players until we embarked on the stadium project and that changed the plan and focus of the board. WE DON'T HAVE THE MONEY TO SIGN STARS.
We are the #1 advocate for Eufa fair play. Can someone ask themselves, why are we doing that? We don't have the resources to compete with others. Szczesny was promoted and his wages increased based on the fact that we will get Almunia off the books. Squillaci came in to collect same salary wage as Micheal, We couldn't cope with RVP, Cesc, Arshavin, Adebayor on top wages when Arshavin was forced in Jan '09, hence Adebayor had to be forced out to balanced the books. Thomas Vermaelen came in to replace Toure. We need to think deeper when we talk of plateyers leaving and stars coming in. Who do we have to sacrifice in wages that matches who is coming-in for the same wage? What is the difference in Transfer Money? If we sold for 4 or 5M, are we buying for 4-8 or we want to buy 20Million. These are the critical area to look at ARSENAL dealings.
Ok, i'm beginning to struggle to keep up with what i'm debating about now. Arseniger, I wasn't insinuating that Wenger can't coach, in fact, I think he has performed miracles when you take into consideration the price of your squad and the ability and strength of them, I was stating that Wenger shouldn't inpsire confidence based on the fact that he knows how to beat Barca, as most managers know how to as well. Even with the finances it can't be denied that the issues surrounding the squad still haven't been addressed, he has proven before that you don't need to spend big money so surely, there wasn't a need to spend big money to tackle whatever it is that causes your team to flop at this time of year. Due to his inability to fix this issue (sorry to keep calling it this, I can't identify why you goes can't go strong throught a season) he has failed and therefore, based on that, there is no defence for Wenger (i'm not saying he should get fired or anything of the sort btw). The year you guys end the season as strongly as you start it will be the year you lift the Premier League trophy.
If seasons having a beginning, middle and end then it's a bogus claim that if we finish a season better than we start it we'll win the title. The season before last we finished the season strongly having started weakly and got poorer in the middle. Had we won the three winnable games we lost at the start of this season we'd be in with serious shout at the title irrespective of what went has happened over the last month. This talk about end of season capitulations, choking and bottling is complete and utter crap. It doesn't matter where or when you pick up the points in the season just as long as over the whole season you pick up more than anyone else.
Amos i'm not saying, when you start crap and finish well you will win it, i'm saying that when you're consistent throughout the season rather than just the beginning, you will win it. As for it being utter crap that you guys don't finish well, I guess pretty much 99% of the world is imagining you dropping points come the business end of the season every year.
Imagination is a wonderful thing but the reality can be quite different. I imagine you are talking about the media when you refer to the world in which case it shouldn't be any great surprise that 99% of football media talk the same predictable language. As I've pointed out before each season is different. You don't play the same teams at the same time and they (and you) aren't in the same form. It's usually a good idea to finish a season strongly anyway and pretty well essential if you've started it poorly but it doesn't really matter when you pick the points up as long as you have enough of them at the end of the season.
"but have they sat on the edge of their seats, mouths wide and hands clapping involuntarily at the majesty of the art before them?" Sorry, have i missed something here? Haha i nearly choked on my cornflakes reading that!
2007/08 run-in 4 consecutive draws, 2008/09 5 consecutive draws, 2010/11 5 draws + 1 loss in 7 games. Is it "utter crap" that there's a poor pattern at the end of seasons?
HY - gotta say, that's is a bit embarrassing, hardly something to write home about is it. Tottenham games always have goals, that's entertaining, and I think our football isn't as great as the writer makes out. Completely flaftters to decieve a lot of the time, tip tap tip tap tip tap.
shewore, while not always exhilarating, you forget the games this season when our football was breathtaking. The games against Chelsea at home, City away, Villa and Barca at home were brilliant footballing performances and there were many others. Your cynicism knows no bounds.
They were top performances (well, the past ten min v Barce) and I was at every one of those games. The point is that the point of playing at this level is to win, that in itself is a lot more entertaining than one or two fantastic performances but ultimately finishing with nothing, again, because of the same level of performances, again.
I share your dissapointment but not your cynicism which is causing a lack of perspective. We are dissapointed because we are not far from being winners. If we were miles away, we would be more cheerful as we would then have accepted mediocrity as our lot.
Even the invincibles had a spell at the end of the season in which they drew 4 out of 5 games. The 2002 double winning side had a run of 4 PL games in which they drew 3 and lost 1 in the early part of the season. It is utter crap that there is a particular pattern to these things at all. What matters is the average points per game and the average in the final third of last season was no worse than the first third. The season before we finished with the 4th highest average PPG in the final third of the season in Wengers time here. So far the lowest PPG average has tended to come in the middle third of a season. But we play the teams at different times each season so it is crap that there is any real pattern here.
You're dividing it into thirds - why? It's hard to turn a blind eye to us not getting to the finish lines, with a string of poor results during the crunch times of the season, ignoring it is a bit of an ostrich situation IMO. Obviously it doesn't matter what you or I think ultimately, I just feel that we do struggle towards the end of the season when a potential trophy is in our sites.
Arseniger: i am not complaining about not signing players, i am complaining about the back up we have for our first 11 in the main. And to be honest it is not even a complaint as i know how much the stadium is having an effect on us. I also agree with the policy of not paying the stupidly stupid wages some of the EPL players are on. I was trying to say that the formation of 451 is not working an if he wants it to work he needs to have other players to make it work. If the BUDGET does not allow that then play a formation that these players can fit into without sacrificing their abilities rather than playing a formation that mr Wenger thinks is the best way to play football. I understand your comments about the budget but these players like diaby and denilson are on seriously big wages and not justifying them as far as i am believe. Mr Wenger picked out some amazing players from know where for little money on not huge wages anelka, henry, overmars, viera, petite, helb, pires the list continues...... these names may have gone on to demand great wages but they earned them by winning things and proving themselves. My point being that Mr Wenger picked these players out from know where now we have to make do with squilachi...?? where have all the bargains gone?
It's a useful group of games but if you follow the earlier parts of the thread you see that the original proposition referred to us dropping points from feb onwards which is roughly a third of the season. It doesn't matter greatly as you can divide it whichever way you like but whether you drop points at the beginning of the season or the end it still doesn't really show any pattern at all which was my point. Over time we've dropped and picked up points in irregular patterns throughout the season. Being aware and open to this understanding is exactly the opposite to sticking your head in the sand - that's a trait you find among those wedded to simplistic conclusions that don't really stand any proper scrutiny.

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