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We Need To Take It On The Chin & Be United

13 League Championships, 11 Charity Shields, 10 FA Cups, 2 League Cups, 1 Fairs Cup and 1 European Cup Winners Cup, it`s safe to say that as a football club our history is illustrious, rich and abundant.

Indeed, in the history of English football there are only 2 other teams more decorated than we, that makes more than 92 teams past and present who would kill to experience the kind of success that makes us one of the best teams to have played the English game.

In my life time alone I`ve witnessed the mighty Gunners lift 5 League tiles, 7 FA Cups, 2 League Cups, 1 European Cup Winners cup, 2 League and Cup doubles and an historical 49 game unbeaten run that incorporated an entire season without losing.

As a football fan, I have indeed been blessed, and by extension as do all the reading Gooners (unless of course you`re 7 years old).

So it`s at times like this that we need to remember just how good we`ve had it.

It`s safe to say that at this time in our history things are looking pretty bleak, it seems almost impossible for us to lose a game of go out of a competition without getting utterly embarrassed, we`re getting ragged from pillar to post by the media and other fans, it`s not that pleasant, truth be told.

But are we really at rock bottom? Does our position warrant such bitterness and anger towards our manager, players and indeed each other?

Never in my time as a football fan have I seen Gooners so divided, I`ve rarely witnessed such a split in opinion (though as the games go on that split becomes a lot more one-sided), however it`s not the split that`s concerning, it`s how we Arsenal fans are conducting ourselves that`s the problem.

It appears to me that each football fan has a different level of tolerance, a barometer of how much "failure" they`re willing to accept before enough is enough, and in general Arsenal fans levels have always been quite high. An understanding if you will.

However it seems as though as that high level of acceptance and understanding has caused something to break within the Arsenal fraternity. Gone have the levels of acceptance, replaced instead by bile and resentment, a sense of entitlement, perhaps instilled into some fans after years of success.

There has been a phrase that has been around as long as I`ve been an Arsenal fan it seems, "The Arsenal way". It goes along the lines that as a club we do things the right way, with class and tradition, and with respect wherever possible.

Our fans, despite our perceived lack of vocal support at home (which only ever seems to be picked up on when we play West Brom or someone, whilst other teams are lauded for their fantastic support when they play Real Madrid, funny that eh?) we have always had great fans, our away support is second to none, we carry ourselves great wit and banter, we do things the Arsenal way.

However the longer our trophy drought continues the more Arsenal fans seem to be turning to bile and hatred.

Arsene Wenger is clearly having a tough time right now, and it could possibly be that he has taken us as far as he can, it might be time for a change, but has he not earned the right to a bit of dignity and respect? Wenger has given Arsenal fans the greatest period in the clubs history, and no, that shouldn`t be enough to entitle him to unwavering support, he should be held accountable, but surely it`s enough for him to be treated in … well … "The Arsenal way".

Players who have been great for Arsenal football club, or have acted in a way that made them a fan's favourite have always spoken about what it meant to them to be an Arsenal player, many players regretting their decision to leave The Gunners, but almost all of them falling in love with the way we do things.

However the club is in danger now, not only of not qualifying for the Champions League, but of becoming a place where no player will want to play.

So yes, we need a shake up right now, and I couldn`t argue against a change in management, we should always be looking to improve, but let`s make ourselves heard with a bit of class, style and respect.

We`ve had banter with so many people for the lengthy time that we've spent at the top, that it`s time to take it on the chin and swallow that bitter pill. If we`re united as a fan base and do things The Arsenal way, show respect to each other, then the path back to the top will be a lot less rocky than it is now.

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The Journalist

Writer: Rocky7 Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Thursday February 16 2012

Time: 7:41PM

Your Comments

Note to Spurs fans: You've had more than your say on the Team News article and are free to continute dishing it out (within reason), god knows all those years in our shadow, you've earned it, but a continuation of that here will be treated as spam and deleted. Please don't waste your, and more importantly, my, time.
Up the Arse!
As a side note I've just noticed Joe Pesci from Home Alone in this article photo.
Bad result yesterday we are now looking forward to saturday's game v sunderland! We will do everything we can to bring the FA Cup home! Thanks for all your support especially the ones who travelled to milan to support us u were great we all appreciate it! Robin van Persie -- Thanks for that skip! Lets move on.
whatever, I'm a spurs fan (So what? I'm bored), but I like this article and it makes some interesting points, namely about the Arsenal Way. Up until the Americans took over on Merseyside it can be argued that 'the Liverpool Way' existed too, but dropping out of English football's elite was a bitter pill for the fans and the club to swallow, and they seem somewhat tarnished these days. As you grow older, you realise that while you don't have to like somebody, to not show them the respect they deserve is just plain stupid, and this is how I feel about your club. I believe you are at the end of an era, but the 'Arsenal way' will live on and ensure you retain your dignity as fans, and importantly make sure you don't do a Leeds. Bring on the 26th!!
Nice article Rocky and I mostly agree, but the club has had an awful dialogue with the fans, a deliberate lack of communication and a childish pretence about our situation, treating fans like fools. There is a feeling that our club has been taken hostage and forced into a direction which we don't like but nevertheless is funded by us. Is the club willing to be the better man, take the lead and make the first move into grown up, honest discussions? Nope. That's where I think a lot of the anger comes from. In all areas, this club has shown zero leadership, meandering along into some vague self sustained, contradicting, self inflicted decline.
Professor Calculus
The club needs to do many steps. Starting with reducing the ******** ticket prices. Fact is that Wenger works on a shoestring budget. Despite what idiots like Gazidis says. Kroenke is known to run a sustainable business - not making winning teams. Look at his franchises in the US. Heres here for the money. Look at the way, we are rushing to make the club debt free despite the fact that we can afford to be in debt longer but spend more cash now. For me the real question is, why does Wenger carry on when he clearly doesnt have the funds the board says he has. Remember what he said last month.. He needs to make a profit of 15-20 mi every season..
WTF did i just type there.. Never mind. Note to self. ******** proof read.
Reasoned article, in the ebb and flow of football it appears your tibe is well on the way to being out. However one shining like at the end of the tunnel is the FFP rules. We over on vital Spurs have been kidding ourselves that this will level the playing field versus the big cheque books of the league. And ye would appear to be in an even better position - financially (of course). The main concern I would have for Arsenal is the lack of youth talent coming through the ranks. This is shocking considering that in Wengers hay-day he could field cup winning teams from your reserve squad. What has gone wrong? Surely this can't be blamed on a lack on big money spending? Where have your youth scouts gone? Or has Wenger lost interest in another long term project. As a spurs fan I admit to a enjoying arsenal stumble but the prospect of it becoming a long term slide just at the moment in time when our club is on the rise would dilute the enjoyment for me. Equally matched rivals squaring off is always more enjoyable then all or nothing battles with underdogs (as I'm sure you'll all agree). Has Wengers time passed, will a new manager solve all your woes or is it a deeper crisis?
Slurms McKenzie
Currently yes Asherthemasher the table would certainly indicate that.
Slurms McKenzie
"Us players, we need to look at ourselves and start doing it on the pitch, to be honest” Theo Walcott 23 Sept 2011 "We want to win the trophy and we need to show the fan’s that we’re ready. It just shows what great character we have in the dressing room." Walcott Jan 2012. Please Theo, instead of telling us all about it in the press how about you just discuss it before each match with your colleagues first? There's a good chap.
wyn mills
rocky I agree with the comment we shuld all stand united. Like wise this is a blog where different points of view can be expressed. I love this club always will and no amount of silly little children from now the lane would ever deter me from that. I think its wrong to stop Scum coming on this site, hey if you get extra points for hits all power to you. I would much prefer a separate forum where arsenal fans if they so wish can have a go at the silly children. Scum will always be scum and comments such as the silly SCUM boySlurms McKenzie comment 'The main concern I would have for Arsenal is the lack of youth talent coming through the ranks. ' beggars belief. I could reply but what a waste of time that would be, except to say what a wonderful talent is being produced at Scum land. So please think about it Rocky, it would make a great forum of Scum replies and attempts mock us. They are will always be Scum and I really look forward to next year when all the wonderful players thay have leave the ship starting with their manager, Bale ,Modric money boy Adeboyor (will they pay his salary) Van der due to brake down. I really hope they take it for granted that they will win at our patch; because that will be the begining of the slid if they do. i
rocky i agree with you but how long we as fans have to remain our "classy silence"?. what is going on with the club? look at our team. song looks to be on a rapid decline. ramsey is just an over hyped 'potential'. arteta doesn't pass the ball forward. rosicky peak years were those years he laid on the sickbed, not too bad now but rarely makes an assist. walcott, let's not talk about him. arshavin is waiting for his uk passport and then go back to run for presidency. mert is too slow & too clumsy for pl. remember we still have djourou whom we have to be patient with until his new contract runs out in 2015, chamakh, bendtner, vela, denilson, squilaci, almunia, mannone, fabianski, park & diaby still on our payroll. young players coming through: jenkinson & miquel, i maybe wrong but i have seen enough that i dont think they have what it takes. the positioning of both players is so bad i bet they took djourou as their role model in training. we are left gibbs, coquelin, yennaris and maybe frimpong & campbell as brighter future prospects. of course szczesny, ox & wilshere will be the back bone provided they are not sold to maintain the "15-20 mil profit' annually
"...then the path back to the top will be a lot less rocky than it is now". Rocky, did you make that up as an intended pun? Just curious.
Joe, we don't have to maintain a "classy silence" far from it, if we think thinks are amiss then as the long term future of the club we would be wrong not to say anything, but it's the way we say it that's important. The atmosphere amongst the fans is becoming increasingly poisonous. The increase and availability of people able to have their say via the medium of the internet seems to be growing daily, and with the players taking to social networking sites in their droves in an attempt to connect with the fans it's much easier these days for fans to get their opinions across. Where as in days gone by the only voices that the club could hear would be the 30,000 or so atendees on match days, now they can hear the many millions around the world instantly, and 24 hours a day. Whilst PC is right that the club has not connected with the fans as they should, we in turn haven't behaved, as a collective, in The Arsenal way over recent seasons.
*think things
Coming on the site and perusing some of the posts here and mind games by the Spuds, it is almost like a Dirge for the club. This is a club that is in the top 4 bracket of the English league; a club with a history laden with silverware; with a solid future both in financial terms and players coming through the ranks; a club with a great Manager (even if a change can do us good). We can only have pride in this club despite the wishes of the spuds fans that this connotes a slide. I feel the club only needs a little tweaking here and there and we will be right back up there; we have always been a player or two and a correct ref decision or two away from title and cup winning seasons in the recent past. What is required is for the management to make those additions we need and take the hard decisions to take out some deadwoods (not all, mind you as these exist in every club).
Agree with Rocky. It is the fans that make the club and if we lose our decorum, that could have a spiral effect on everything else. We have to keep the faith. It isn't impossible for the team to bounce right back to something good this season. The fans can help the cause by remaining united and not fall for the mind games in the press.
Ok, we gave you some serious doo doo yesterday, but I'm on here to offer an outsider's view on your woes.

You can correct me if I'm wrong, but it seems to me that your current problems began with the departure of David Dein who was probably, & still is IMO, the best man to get the best out of Wenger. That partnership worked wonders for you. Now, obviously, I don't know how your current set up works, but if the Club could find a way of rediscovering that winning formula, then you should come out of it. Despite what we Spuds think publicly, Wenger IS one of the best coaches to have ever graced the greatest league in the world, our Premiership.

If your owners could find a way of getting Dein back, thern I for one would be very afraid.

Sometimes we have to be prepared to lose, and lose with grace and no small amount of good humour. We’re getting pelted at the moment but that’s what happens in football. The boot will be on the other foot next week. Many fans react aggressively as part of that and to the pain of losing. In most cases its just part of the healing process analysing where and how the team have cocked up. The answer is not to accuse them of disloyalty. We need to be more tolerant of that. The success or failure of the club is something that affects us all acutely as fans, but it should never affect the camaraderie between us. And we should never forget the importance of open debate. Some of us prefer to talk about things openly; others would rather discuss opinions privately. That’s why we have an open board and a separate FORUM. Different strokes.
Wyn Mills
@Spuds-U-Like. Some fans have had a strange attitude towards David Dein leaving, really trying to play down the significance. Personally I think the "Pish,Posh, David Dein is only one man" attitude is overcompensating to try and hide a real fear they have about a partnership that worked being split. Perhaps there is a detailed analysis of the David Dein effect out there but I haven't seen it, all I know is that since he left we haven't been focused or ambitious in the transfer market and our team is absolutely not built to beat the the top teams in Europe. Post David Dein no one can claim that AFC has done all it can to create the best first team possible. Obviously things weren't perfect when Dein was here but I knew my club was working hard to create the best first team in Europe. There are not enough football people in key positions at the club, just a bunch of corporate suits who could be copied and pasted into any organisation.
Professor Calculus
In my opinion Dein played as much of a part in elevating AFC to its current day status as Wenger. And it started when he brought Dennis Bergkamp to the club in 95.
Wyn Mills
Prof C & Wyn, where do you find another David Dein? Maybe your owners should go out & find a proper football man with the Club running through his veins if they can't or won't swallow their pride & bring Dein back. I'm sure that if they approached him, he wouldn't turn them down, he IS Arsenal to his very core.

Just a thought & some names to throw into that particular ring, how about someone like Tony Adams, George Graham or Bob Wilson as Director of Football? OK, I know Wilson works for the club already, but I think Wenger needs to have some of the workload taken off him so he can concentrate on what he does best.

"But the more important thing about our model is that it's sustainable. Our business model means we can continue to do what we're doing forever." - a little snippet, at an ever decreasing rate. "city are jealous of us" - yeah okay mate, just chuck the ST prices up again will you? That decision will be being made soonish, unless they've learnt something from last year. The club is in absolute limbo at the moment, no one's set out any effin direction for it, they just rely on us lemmings to continue to fill their coffers, well that's starting to slow down, and it will slow down massively next season if we're in wafer cup, what will happen to our ST prices? They can't include all qualifying games as cup credits surely? Then after that they won't be able to tell us they're all sold out as they won't be able to do carling cup prices cos the ST holders would've forked out! Gazidis is Kroenke's man on the ground, Wenger needs to take a stance on this, stop keeping your feet in their camp, stop being their lightening rod, tell us what's really going on - is it you being tight & treating money as it's your own? Or are you under strict instructions to keep the club at a pumped up value?
Spuds u like appreciate those names but I wouldn't fancy of them leading negotations for a star player for all entirely differing reasons, wouldn't fancy Rodders turning up, wouldn't fancy Graham turning up (things are done SLIGHTLY differently these days, George) or Bob Wilson who's grafting for some brilliant causes at the moment.
Obviously, shewore, you'll know their faults & strengths better than me, I just chucked them in there to kick off your own thought processes as to whether a DOF is the route you think you should take & if so, who that person could be. I definately think that something at your club has got to change, but I'm not convinced that chucking Wenger out would do it, your problems are more fundamental & the real problem lies within your owners & board, not the guy on the touchline.

Spuds, Dein has (had?) unimaginable contacts in the football world. He'd be a hard man to replicate. As you've also noticed, he has Arsenal running through his veins. He's not a collector, like Kronke, Wenger and half the board. He's an achiever. He goes and gets what he wants and discards what he doesn't need. We haven't had someone like that at our club for a while now.
Wyn Mills
“OK, you can say we have just lost 4-0 in Milan but you have to believe. If you don't believe then you might as well go home. You have got to believe and always think you can turn things around. The belief is all you need to have. Not my words but an Arsenal great; inmy humble opinion the best.
Very well written and thought out article, a lot of the comments could well apply to most fans of most teams
I'm sure there is someone else like Dein out there in the football world who can be found and recruited by Arsenal. That such a position does not exist in Arsenal is down to the mismanagement of the current set up (Kroenke and Gazidis). Rocky - there are lots of Arsenal who criticise, but the manner of their criticism is over the top, and thats the issue. Even on this site, when we won against Sunderland and Blackburn, LDs match report hardly got any comments, but after a defeats, there are so many more comments. And I've seen this over the past year, so its not a one-off. More people voice their opinion when things are not going well, just the way it is. There are several fundamental aspects that are not right with this club, and its only going to get worse. No CL football in 2013 (unless Chelsea continue to implode), no sponsors coming forward in 2014 since we don't have CL football, the quality of signings going down - all these are realistic possibilities. The club had a great strategy 8 years back, I still believe that building the stadium was the right move, but they've not been able to adapt to the changes in the past 4 years. That, to me, is the biggest (current) failing.
You know, & I'm dreading saying this, but I see some slight similarities between you current situation & the situation Spurs were in just before Sugar sold out to ENIC. By that I mean Spurs needed financial stability when Sugar came in & he gave that to us, as your board has done for you but without the preceding basket case scenario. Spurs towards the end of Sugar's time underperformed despite the finances being on a sound footing, much like you are now relatively speaking. Mind you, having said that, we would have loved to have had your level of "underperformance" at the time! Our fortunes began to turn when Levy took over & had cleared out the last of the Sugar regime, so that we are now on the verge of actually achieving something.

I think your club is at a slightly similar crossroads & by that I mean the board/owner has to take some action to bring to a halt the slide thats in grave danger of going out of control. The next big decision on this is so crucial that if they get it wrong, it could take a long time to get back to where you were & for you, that would be unthinkable.

The thing is there is no real de facto "owner" - more of a power struggle, until this thing gets sorted between the yank and the uzbek nothing will go in the right direction.
I think you've got it spot on there shewore.

Just heard on TS that Usmanov is close to Dein, so do you think its possible for Usmanov to buy out Kroenke & bring back Dein? Would be good for you if he could.

"Dein's not a collector." He sold his shareholding for £75m. You can say Dein hasn't been replaced, but why the clamour to bring him back? Why not A.N.Other? It's not the partnership of Dein and AW that was wonderful, afterall, they fundamentally differed on so many things that are irreconcilable. For me it's the partnership of Dein and Fiszman that's missed more. It bothers me greatly that, less than a year after his death, Fiszman's role is so overlooked. He looked after the club's finances on his deathbed and nobody pays him any dues, Dein sold up for £75m and he's the messiah. It shows you what good PR gets you.
Little Dutch
Not a very good collectory if he's selling shares, and why wouldn't you sell up? I'd be surprised if anyone else in the same situation would keep their shares, don't matter how Arsenal you are.
u lot have THE WORST home support in the entire country. Doesn't matter who u play u never sing.
We could get somebody good from outside to take over the role that Dein played at the Club, but don't forget that Dein was a fan of Arsenal, has the Club in his blood, and you can't buy that. Things are never that simple, and I acknowledge the point about Fiszman, but the current board do not inspire confidence. I find it bordering on arrogant when Gazidis says we have a sustainable model that will continue. Only if the fans keep showing up. What happens when they stop?
Another Spurs fan here... our rivalry almost dictates that you're going to see a few of us over here poking some fun at you whilst you're down. Let's face it, we've had enough poked at us over the years. I love it every time you loose or suffer a humiliating defeat like the 4-0 to Milan, especially after your goalies pricesless comments about if Spurs can be them so can we! Yeah right. Anyhow, on a more heartfelt front, one of my best mates (now passed on God bless) was a Gunner through & through, what a pair we made! Anyhow, as much joy as I get out of your current slump in form and belief I'm always left thinking about my dead mate, about how flipping furious he'd be. Good luck you horrible lot, just as long as we beat you next game that is!
Cape Town Spurs
That's the point LD, he SOLD his shares, arguably in a misguided attempt to gain power. If he'd held on to them he'd be considerably richer than he is today. Dein has always bought and sold. At one point he owned over 40% of the club, then sold a heap to Fiszman. He doesn't collect and sit on shares. This isn't to belittle what Fiszman did for the club, but Dein was a showman, and there are times when you need a showman at the helm and not a recluse. Look at what Dein is involved in today and tell me he isn't a man of action. Nothing wrong with good PR either.
Wyn Mills
the problem is more with kroenke than anyone else. dein sold his share with the intention of bringing a deep pocket owner who is willing to spend. i bet kroenke could not even name the first 11 who started in the milan game
My take on why Dein was kicked out? He was the only director who was keen to bring sport success to the club. The one who preferred sport success to profits. You think Kronke cares about success on the field beyond it affecting the coffers? Take a look across the pond at his other franchises. Wenger is the perfect manager for Silent Stan.
Wyn Mills
i would like to disclaim of calling for the head of wenger. my opinion is, if we want instant guaranteed success, it would be usmanov + mourinho
I don't want Wenger to go. I want him to get help. And the noises coming out of the club about a shakeup of players and coaching staff suggest that may be happening.
Wyn Mills
Can a manager just go stale? Does Wenger need to move on more for his sake then Arsenals? Or prehaps a defensive scout could solve all your problems. A big ignorant animal of a centre back that can't play the ball on the ground but won't let ball or man pass him would probably do wonders for your struggling back line. A Richard Dunne or Chris Samba type just to steady the ship and let the younger guys learn from.
Slurms McKenzie
Fabulous article that probably says it all:
Wyn Mills
Wyn, this is one of those articles that are quite crap and quite annoying. All discussions about the Arsenal veer to the extremes - either everything is good, Wenger knows etc, or its doom and gloom, this club is *****ed. This site is the only one that has a decent cross-section of reasonable views which doesn't veer to either extreme (by and large, though there are some extreme posts). This has been happening for the last 3 years. There are simple questions - can the club be doing something different to improve its situation? Does the club have the financial resources to do so? The answer to my mind is yes. And that's worthy of criticism. I don't think fans would be upset with a loss, but the nature of a loss rankles. That performance against Milan had so much wrong with it, the basics went so wrong and that to me, is not acceptable. And if I criticise that, I feel I am fully justified in doing so.
Thought I'd provide some SPAM to be wiped out by the censor here. That's Spurs Punk Arsenal Massively. Now that's the SPAM out of the way. Here's hoping that the Arse find a way to right your ship. If the ship be sinking, in the words of American basketballer Michael Richardson, then the fun will go out of the rivalry. We Spurs supporters need a decent Arse team if we are to enjoy the rivalry. So please don't go down the drain completely. We'd lose the current joy of mocking you, as mocking the feeble isn't very nice. My Mum taught me many decades ago to be nice to those who are down and out, so here's giving you a leg up in your time of acute distress. Bad show at San Siro this week. Come on now, get your act together! We need you to do so.
Total knobhead
Hey, how come there's no MOTM poll for the match at San Siro? lol.
Total knobhead
Sorry to be sticking around, but a serious inquiry: It looks to me that something important went out of the home-match experience for Arsenal went you moved out of Highbury into Emirates. Not the same spirit there as there used to be. Different set of supporters seem to be in the stand eating their prawn sandwiches (the new symbol of a Gooner supporter) and no singing, no spontaneous supporter enthusiasm. Am I wrong when I perceive a more corporate posh crowd than there used to be at Highbury? Less of a North London crowd. More yuppified crowd? Hope this doesn't happen to the Yid Army when we move into a new N17 stadium and out of our beloved WHL. It's discouraging to see a less buoyant crowd for home Gooner matches than there used to be. Am I right? Convince me I'm wrong if you think I am.
Total knobhead
I think you're wrong regarding mocking the feeble ... we've had a blast doing it for years and years and years and years and years and year and ........
@Rocky7 And it was tasteless when you did it. I'd rather have a real rivalry with you fellows. I don't find it fun to mock you when you're down and out, and down and out you seem to becoming. Don't tempt me into become tasteless. Don't become pathetic, even though there are terrible bits and pieces of evidence that that is where you're heading.
Total knobhead
Seems like England's worst ref, Howard Webb, doesn't see a handball with Arsenal holds the hand.
Total knobhead

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