Merry Christmas Everybody?

By Kevin Whitcher

Gunners Gift Guardiola all three points at Etihad

So, a week in which we’d hoped for four points out of six to maintain Arsenal’s genuine hopes of challenging for the title has ended pointless. All the fault of the officials according to Le Boss, who has made a speciality of shifting the blame when there is any chance. And at £8.3 million a year (plus bonuses, I have it on good authority), why wouldn’t he? It ignores the fact his team mustered one attempt on target in 90 minutes. Arsenal have enjoyed a bit of good fortune over the course of the campaign to achieve the unbeaten sequence they enjoyed, but that ran out over the last six days. Swings and roundabouts.

Yes, Manchester City’s first goal was offside, but it was a very tight call and the officials are not supposed to give decisions if they are uncertain. The second goal really depends on interpretation of the law, but there is no arguing that Arsenal's defence failed to put in a challenge worthy of the name and Petr Cech was beaten at his near post. Fundamentally though, Pep Guardiola’s side’s win was deserved due to the comparison in the performance levels of the two sides.

Arsenal had a decent enough first half. One-nil up at the interval, although they didn’t dominate the 45 minutes. The second half, they were abject. Players such as Mesut Ozil – seemingly already on his winter break – were lacklustre and uncommitted. It was a shocker. Last season, having beaten Leicester at home with a late winner to move within two points of top spot, Wenger’s team went to Old Trafford to face a struggling Manchester United team and stunk the place out, somehow conspiring to lose by only one goal. But the display that day was so poor that some long-term advocates of the manager had seen enough. The title there for the taking, the players couldn’t be motivated to put in a shift.

Responses to the defeat at Manchester City – due more to the nature of the performance than the defeat – have been similar in their anger. Arsenal are nine points behind Chelsea but only the most deluded supporter could see that gap being closed after what they witnessed yesterday. West Brom and Palace should be beaten at home to calm the waters, but currently in fourth place, hanging on to that top four spot will become the realistic ambition of the season once 2017 gets going with trips awaited to Chelsea, Liverpool, Spurs, Southampton and Stoke. Visits to Old Trafford, Goodison and the Eithad have garnered a point – and that was another game that witnessed a solitary Arsenal shot on target.

Fortunately, it should put all questions about the manager staying on as meaningless conjecture. My understanding is that the decision was made last season that it was time for change, but given the manager’s contribution to the club and loyalty when he was in demand, it will be dressed up as Arsene making the decision to call it a day. The stories that there is a contract on the table waiting to be signed are just that. Wenger himself knows the game is up. He had one last throw of the dice this season, but his body language tells us enough. He has spent much of the campaign sitting on his behind.

So a little detail on the match. The Ox was dropped in favour of Iwobi, the only change from Everton. After four minutes, it all looked so good, with Bellerin allowed to advance, City on the back foot, and a goal being fathomed when Sanchez took a pass and played Walcott in. Theo did nada for the rest of the match, but was on the scoresheet. It actually summarizes a decent chunk of his better contributions in an Arsenal shirt.

Sterling should have equalized from a header not too long after, but put it wide. City were awoken and started to play with some genuine purpose, and the first half was pretty even by the time the referee blew for the interval.

Soon after the restart, City were level. The ball broke for them in midfield from a Cech goal-kick and the defence were caught cold. Sane was inches offside, but it tight enough for the linesman to give him the benefit of the doubt. It was another lead given away. Doesn’t seem to happen with Antonio Conte’s teams quite so much. He’s like a modern day George Graham in that respect, only more consistent. The Cup Winners’ Cup side had Paul Merson, Chelsea have Eden Hazard. George could win cups with defensive resilience, the odds on Chelsea taking the title aren’t too generous after 11 wins in a row.

Arsenal dropped deep allowing City time to play it around. It was the kind of tactic lesser teams use when they come to the E******s, but Arsenal proved so poor in keeping the ball when they had it, they gave their hosts plenty of opportunities to convert. Where was the resilience? The famed mental strength? Spirit? The Dr Ceri Evans effect? When the going gets tough, Arsenal wilt. Alexis was tearing his hair out whilst his colleagues construed to give the ball back to City at the earliest possible opportunity. It felt as it we were just waiting for the goal to come and eventually it did, as De Bruyne converted without too much in the way of obstruction from Monreal.

The goals, and their sequence, echoed events at Goodison Park. One-nil up, two-one down. Sounds like the potential title of a new fanzine. At least Mikel Arteta, in the City dugout, had the good grace not to celebrate either of his team’s goals.

The Ox had came on for Iwobi, and was withdrawn less than 20 minutes later with another hamstring. Echoes of Sheffield Wednesday in the League Cup last season.

After the goal, it was kitchen sink time with Giroud coming on for Coquelin but there wasn’t much in the way of service. There was a ray of hope as Ozil found Sanchez who put Walcott clear from the angle, but the nothingy lob into touch that followed was rank. A rare chance completely spurned with a lack of quality from the number 14.

There was no sense of in-game management either amongst the players or from the technical area. Arsenal’s performance probably made Guardiola’s side (without Aguero, Fernandinho, Gudogan and Kompany) look better than they are.

The conclusion of the game just about summed it up. A free kick awared on the halfway line with seconds left. Cech should have stormed into the City penalty area to offer another body, but elected to take a short kick to Ozil. The referee blew. Shambles. We can only cling onto the hope that there is only another five months of this spiritless Arsenal to endure. At least then, there will be the chance of something different.

The board should go all out to secure Diego Simeone, because that is the type of manager this group of players need. A motivator, an organizer, a tactician. The game has moved on and Arsene has gone backwards. His winning teams had character and resilience to add to technique. Compare Dennis Bergkamp with Mesut Ozil. Nigel Winterburn to Nacho Monreal. Martin Keown to Gabriel. Simeone as Arsenal boss is not going to happen, but it’s what should happen. This isn’t the Gunners those who have been following the club before the stadium move recognize.

Arsene must honour his contract, as the board don’t have the teeth to throw him out on his ear and start the rebuilding process now, so we have to wait until the summer. Mathematically the title race is far from over, but you won’t find many AKBs willing to put their money on Arsenal winning it. You can get 12-1 on that from some bookies this morning.

Bernard Azulay summed it up beautifully on his A Gooner’s Diary blog on the game as a “lifetime sentence of cyclical non-fulfilment”.

I wonder if, should Tony Pulis’ side prove resistant on Boxing Day, the home crowd might finally turn on the manager. At least the end of this seemingly perpetual purgatory is in sight, and that kind of toxicity would certainly make any thoughts of an extension inconceivable. Merry Christmas everybody?

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19th December 2016 09:00:00


Comments and Reaction

User comments on this article are now closed. If you want to continue the debate, why not do so on the Gooner Forum.

Jumpers for goalposts  9:04am 19th Dec 2016

I'm genuinely interested to hear from anyone that thought this season would be any different from the last twelve. This was always going to happen - as soon as Wenger's pampered little darlings are put under pressure they crumble. And it won't change til he's gone. - Post No. 101542

TiTi2  9:11am 19th Dec 2016

Clueless. Spineless. Uninspired. Inept. One shot on target in the match. Again. Giving away a winning position. Again. Inability to control a game. Again. Fighting for champions league place. No hope. Merry Christmas everyone. - Post No. 101543

Arseneknewbest  9:14am 19th Dec 2016

Thanks Kev - I couldn't write something as restrained as that to describe yesterday in a miserable month of pre-christmas sundays. As you rightly say, wengo debating the legality of the two goals is meaningless when there was such a gap in quality and effort between the two teams. He's made us look thoroughly lacking in class and good grace over the years hasn't he. At least this annual collapse didn't affect christmas in the way last year's did. One nil up, two-one down, that's how wengo lost his crown...we can hope. Sayonara chihuahua-san. - Post No. 101544

John A  9:16am 19th Dec 2016

I echo Jumpers for goalposts. It's like a boil and the cure is to lance it. Ozil would have been substituted under managers like Simeone and Mourinhio. Another failed season. - Post No. 101545

CB  9:17am 19th Dec 2016

I do hope you`re correct Kevin re him going at the end of this season, but with all due respect, you have been wrong in the past on some of your insider knowledge. Could you give us a little more info on this to help us believe that there is a light at the end of the tunnel? - Post No. 101546

Website Editor  9:29am 19th Dec 2016

CB - Sadly I can't reveal the source of this info. It is different and more reliable than the one that tipped me off about Cahill and Jagielka, which I no longer give any credence to. So best view it as pie in the sky and don't raise your hopes. After all, football is bullsh*t central, right? - Post No. 101547

JDG  9:32am 19th Dec 2016

Kev, I note that Myles Palmer mentions that there is a new 2 Year deal on the table, however, AW wont sign it on the back of successive defeats but might wait until a period of say 2 to 3 successive wins!! - I agree with you 100% regarding Simeone however, me thinks he wouldent be seen as the right fit for Arsenal as he might be seen as too similar a character to someone like Mourinho in terms of temperament for the Arsenal board & Kroenke etc, shame cause he's a proven winner. - Post No. 101548

Stuart  9:35am 19th Dec 2016

A decade ago there was something to say. Eight years ago there was something to get angry about. These days, there is nothing left to be said which hasn't been said a thousand times before. Wenger Out - Post No. 101549

Danny  9:37am 19th Dec 2016

The biggest party will be outside the stadium on the day he goes. It's just awful to watch season in season out. Wenger out now. - Post No. 101550

King Jeremy  9:42am 19th Dec 2016

No adjectives remain to suitably define the display put on yesterday. I felt absolutely nothing at the end of the game, which concerns me greatly. I'm past getting emotional over these typical displays. All I do now is simply look forward to the day when Wenger packs it in. The Wenger apologists are out in force - biased refereeing seems to be today's excuse of choice. "But who would replace him - nobody is available!" the cry. Quite frankly, I'd take anyone, literally anyone, if it means that Wenger is gone. Thanks for the memories Arsene, but it's time to say goodbye. - Post No. 101551

Bard  9:42am 19th Dec 2016

A second half shocker. We were completely steamrollered. We made City look world beaters. Surely none of this should surprise any of us. The legality or otherwise of their goals is a red herring. Wenger sounded like he's been reading Untold with his beef against the refs. Moreover we have given all our rivals a wonderful Xmas gift, We are now officially easily bullied. - Post No. 101552

Seven Kings Gooner  9:47am 19th Dec 2016

Kev : "challenging for the title" should we really be using words like this after 10 repetitive years? There are a lot of angry Arsenal fans but there are also many like me who obviously cannot get Arsenal out of their system but now watch their football lower down the leagues. I urge those who are still pulling their hair out each season to make the break and watch "lesser" teams and players who do make genuine efforts to win football matches, it is great therapy. Stick with it because after a while you start to watch both teams play, you notice those old pros still determined to win and you will love the fact that the players can give and take a tackle without slapping each other afterwards. You will also see poor performances but that is because the players, in general are not as skilful. What you will not see is players like Ozil who clearly thinks he is too good for us and should be playing for Barca or Real Madrid. The truth is Ozil's attitude has been nurtured by weak managers and obscene amounts of money - he would not survive in division two! Make the change guys you won't regret it. - Post No. 101554

Ron  9:53am 19th Dec 2016

The very suggestion of Arsenal as title challengers is ridiculous. An utterly rotten show. we re used to surrenders of course and that one is up there with the worst of them. Anybody who still thinks those players are giving their all for Wenger and the Club are barmy. Contract for Ozil? A taxi is more like and quite a few of the others should pile into it with him, AW included. The lot of them are now into the territory of being seen to bring the Club into disrepute and staining the Clubs history. Theres little to nothing left to say after that lot yesterday really. - Post No. 101555

Augustus Flair  9:54am 19th Dec 2016

Lucky old Arsene gets the "bad officiating" excuse to fall back on again. But the real issue here was bad tactics, bad spirit, bad technique and stinkingly bad management. When the Sky cameras covered the pitch at the end I was staggered to see Walcott was still on, such had been his anonymity. Terrible stuff and very disheartening. Happy Christmas. Oh, and I like the One-Nil-Up, Two-One-Down fanzine idea. It could catch on. - Post No. 101556

GS  9:58am 19th Dec 2016

Very disappointing week, and with Wenger blaming refs it ands a message to the players that it's not his/ their fault. What did he say at HT Tuesday & Sunday , why do the players drop off, why does he not patrol the tec area barking orders , why does he not make timely subs, why is he clueless...we all know the answer . If and when he goes he needs to take the regime with him, as it's a problem deep routed in the club, getting shot of Wenger is only half of the problem. .....Lover Arsenal - Hate regime. - Post No. 101557

71guns  10:01am 19th Dec 2016

Copy and pasted from last Wednesday: Blah blah blah... There's nothing to dissect here, we started well, they sat back we huffed and puffed with tricks and flicks, got a goal and once again the 'ruthlessness' that we now have er... wasn't there. The home fans finally woke up after a couple of Everton chances and then suddenly it was a cup tie and we once again didn't have the b*llocks for it. NOTHING IS GOING TO CHANGE WHILE WENGER IS STILL IN CHARGE! I know it's not his fault when Ozil misses one or two chances or Granit headbutts someone but tactically he's always too late, why can we see whats going on so much sooner? Why is Wally left on the pitch for an hour plus doing nothing before he's taken off? Last night was a low for me - that's exactly the sort of game you win when your a serious title contender... Meh - I've got my sulking head on today. - Post No. 101280 - Post No. 101558

Red Member  10:02am 19th Dec 2016

we challenge for the top 4 and no more. in Kroenke's defence he admits as much and I am sure once Wenger finally departs then the fans anger will turn to him. We are a money making machine which uses effective PR to brainwash the masses. - Post No. 101559

Cyril  10:05am 19th Dec 2016

The camera shot of Sanchez on his knees just sums it up. The sight of those Arsenal players in the second half walking about on the job just about broke my heart. This is Arsenal we are talking about. it's hard to find anything to say. We have some easy run of games and maybe this will trigger a buy in January. What else can be said at the moment... - Post No. 101560

Smithy  10:11am 19th Dec 2016

Ozil is a fair weather Charlie. Get rid of him - there is a reason Madrid got rid of him - too lazy. Keep Sanchez ,boot out ozil ,get in a harder working playmaker . And do the obvious pension for arsene. - Post No. 101561

Bob  10:13am 19th Dec 2016

December is the new November, evidently. The biggest indictment of Wenger is Conte's impact at Chelsea. Whatever excuses may have been used in the past about financial doping, Conte has not turned Chelsea's fortunes round by throwing heaps of cash at a crumbling team. He has done it by motivation, coaching and tactical acumen. On paper, there is nothing between Chelsea's squad and Arsenal's. Each has one world class player (Hazard/Sanchez), one just below that bracket (Costa/Ozil) and a host of internationals. If anything, Arsenal have the deeper squad. But the one player Chelsea did buy in the summer has proved key - Kante. He is the type of player we have desperately lacked for a decade, and the type which Wenger has no interest in. Decent enough players though they are, neither Xhaka nor Coquelin are top-drawer defensive midfielders. The only crumb of solace is Kevin's inside tip that the end is at long last in sight. I do hope there won't be any sycophantic tributes to the old fraud when he announces that he is choosing to step down. Unlike Len Goodman on Strictly who deserved the fond farewell he received, our Head Judge has long overstayed his welcome. Good riddance. - Post No. 101562

Rob  10:19am 19th Dec 2016

I really don't think the squad is the core of the problem. We could always lose a couple and bring two in. But fundamentally that is a pretty decent squad. The problem is they don't believe in each other or themselves, when the screw turns. It's about motivation and belief. Ferguson had it in spades. So did Cloughie and Shanks. In as far as he had it, Wenger has allowed the thing to dissipate over the last twelve years and there's no way he can get it back. Doubtless this idea will be laughed down but I would consider either Howe or Dyche for next season. It won't be Simone, although he certainly has the Cloughie factor about him. But he also doesn't speak English. He could learn quickly of course. But it doesn't have to be a big name. Dychie strikes me as having a touch of the GG's about him and won't carry passengers. Pretty much what's required. - Post No. 101563

Paul Ward  10:27am 19th Dec 2016

Kevin, couldn't have put it any better myself, and in truth it's what most of us feared would happen this week , particularly once Mustafi got injured.The crazy amount of injuries we get( the Ox yesterday WTF?) seems another symptom of a failing regime, and it's impossible not to conclude that we need a fresh start. Even an unlikely FA cup success will not change that because we've been there before, this time Arsene knows. - Post No. 101564

Redshirtswhitesleeves  10:27am 19th Dec 2016

Pathetic, abject, spineless surrender. Bar Sanchez there isn't a single heart in that wretched team of overpaid, pampered underachievers. Go Wenger and take Ozil and the other lazy buggers with you, you are not wanted at our club. Your dead right kev, oh for players with real character and 'mental strength' such as winterburn, keown and so many others like them on which gooners my age and older were bought up on. I used to be proud that Arsenal were respected and renowned for their fighting spirit and never say die attitude, the whole club ethos was built on it. Now I'm embarrassed to tell anyone I support Arsenal, I hate being associated with such lilly-livered cowards that Wenger has given us over the last decade. And these people extolling the virtues of the 'wonderful' football his teams play...it's an absolute myth...endless sideways passing and we are lucky to have more than one attempt on goal per match away from home. If that was Tony Pulis or Fat San they would get slaughtered! Enough is enough, Wenger, gazidis, kroenke OUT - Post No. 101565

Roy  10:44am 19th Dec 2016

This is bloody ridiculous. Surely the end game is in sight. - Post No. 101566

Dartford gooner  10:44am 19th Dec 2016

Funny a few weeks ago some mugs on here were saying Ozil was better than DB10. My arse if you kicked Dennis you got one back and more. Ozil like Hleb and Reyes great skill but no bottle.Its all right looking great against some Swiss mob but how many times has Ozil taken a game against a top club by the scruff of the neck and turned it our way.Never mind a couple of home wins coming up and the AKBs will all be happy again. - Post No. 101567

Torbay Gooner  10:44am 19th Dec 2016

Another disgraceful 2nd half capitulation. When Wenger goes can he please take Ozil and Walcott with him. The thought of either of them still playing for the club next season is stomach churning. - Post No. 101568

GoonerGoal!  10:45am 19th Dec 2016

Dear Santa, I just can't stand it anymore. it's been 10 years of uselessness (of no use; not serving the purpose or any purpose; unavailing or futile; without useful qualities; of no practical good. Now, can I please have my Arsenal back? WENGER OUT! GAZIDIS OUT! KROENKE OUT! VIVE LA REVOLUTION! - Post No. 101569

Nick  10:53am 19th Dec 2016

Ok BOTH citys goals SHOULD have been disallowed for offside or our effort from Monreals cross and Iwobi finish allowed to stand BUT theirs wernt and nor was ours ! Our performance was ABJECT the sight of Sanchez imploring his team mates to push up summed up what is wrong with this side they are LEADERLESS both on the pitch and off it ! My friend and I both remarked before half time that with us playing so deep we needed someone to hold the ball up ie Giroud our "manager" paid a fortune to make such decisions did NOTHING we went to sleep at the start of the second half and when we woke up as though startled by a nightmare it was too late well too late for this lot , Wenger should have changed it for the second half or at the very least after they levelled but no he waited then put on the Ox for Iwobi which is no real change at all finally as my friend and I had suspected he put on Giroud when we were losing and chasing the game ! Wengers indecisiveness was reflected in our players who completely forgot how to play even the basic side of the game ,fouled continually doing City's job of running down the clock for them! ! In short a DISGRACEFUL showing from all concerned bar Sanchez who at least looked bothered! Never mind Wenger going at seasons end he should bloody well go NOW! - Post No. 101570

Highbury Boy  10:57am 19th Dec 2016

It breaks my heart to say this but Alexis if you want money go to China. If you want a chance of medals go to one of the other clubs. Here at Arsenal you will get neither. You are the lone star who shows up the others for what they are. - Post No. 101571

Snowbiggee  11:06am 19th Dec 2016

We'll win the next few because they are average teams but start losing the harder games, which start again in February. We'll get 76/77 points and finish top four. So predictable, so monotonous. So Wenger. - Post No. 101572

6OONER PETE  11:17am 19th Dec 2016

Since 1968 Arsenal have been a huge part of my life with many ups and downs. SKY has changed the face of football to the detriment of my enjoyment but although I find it far less appetizing than it used to be I still have a deep down love of the club. Over the last 12 years Wenger and the regime have gradually made it more and more difficult to actually enjoy watching them. It's not the losing that matters (there have been many times over the years when we have been awful) but the lack of a a decent philosophy running through the team. We have some decent players but with no proper tactics coached and the same tippy tappy nonsense every match/year/century we all know we are going nowhere. We have enough quality players to get decent results now and again even without proper coaching. Any other manager in the premiership would be getting better results from this group of players. I have already stopped going to matches due to cost/lack of entertaining football/lack of atmosphere but I still stream every game (Arsenal are in my blood). I have got to the point where watching them at all is a complete waste of time. I hope you are correct Kevin, when you say it is Wenger's last season because at the moment this Grounhog Day is absolute torture. - Post No. 101573

Mark  11:20am 19th Dec 2016

When it comes to a battle this team with the exception of Sanchez are cowards.Just a month earlier at OT we turned in another abject performance no lessons were learned as usual.3 years ago around about the same time we lost 6-3 yesterday was an even worst performance.The slightest bit of pressure and we fold.Wenger still thinks he is the same manager he was in 2004.When he goes his legacy will be 13 years without a league title and 20 years of failure in the CL.If he had gone in 2009 he's record would still have been intact but the last 8 years have been a tale of decline.Ozil should give his wages for the big away games to Sanchez.As for Sanchez anyone who thinks he is going to hang around at this club with its lack of ambition needs their head examined.He is much to good to be playing alongside Ozil Wally Coquelin Iwobi and the Ox and to have a coach who is clueless like Wenger - Post No. 101574

anthony walters  11:38am 19th Dec 2016

this group of players is a good one they lack leadership and direction that comes from arsene .i cannot see wenger going beyond this season a more ruthless and focused manager is needed to get the best from this squad not one who overindulges ozil or picks the so called best players unbalancing the team and leaving us at unbalanced in big games. - Post No. 101575

Know Man  12:00pm 19th Dec 2016

Ive been on this site for the last 2 years saying Ozil is a fraud, finally the penny has dropped amongst most of you. Soon, he'll be the best paid player at the club, for what? Never dominates a match, weak, cannot beat a defender, no pace, not even 2 footed, and his shooting is poor! As for Xhaka, a pedestrIan paced midfielder not suited to the EPL. This team will be lucky to achieve top 4, bigger tests are yet to come. - Post No. 101576

Peter  12:01pm 19th Dec 2016

I know why we are losing. It is because Arsene has looked at the table and realised that The Gooners have not finished third so before he leaves he wants to put that right on his CV and then he has lead us to 1st,2nd,3rd and 4th places and still got us in the champion's league for 18/19 years. Also he could not believe that 2 weeks ago (in November are boggy month) we were first so that was wrong so better to get our bad month out of the way and lose in December to Everton and Man City. Can't wait for next season (hopefully new manager). - Post No. 101577

Jumpers for Goalposts  12:05pm 19th Dec 2016

I've been smiling as I've been reading the comments on here. Why do so many people think that Wenger can't go beyond the end of this season???? He survived the 8-2, the 6-0, the 6-3, the Birmingham League Cup Final defeat, the regular Champions League thrashings, the regular end of season collapses, the regular cup defeats to lower league opposition so what makes this season any different?? The ONLY thing that will remove the old git is protests before, during and after matches. Until the crowd turn on him, we're stuck in this never ending cycle of sh*te ! - Post No. 101578

Alsace  12:05pm 19th Dec 2016

We don't have the guts and we don't have the brains. We have had some fun this season but here it ends. Champions go to Everton and win 1-0. They go to Man City and win 1-0. This manager doesn't understand how to defend and he never has done. He ended up in the wrong part of north London. - Post No. 101579

Joe S.  12:19pm 19th Dec 2016

I normally stand by Ozil because he gives the mid field an element of class they would not normally have. I mean ,Coqulin was garbage, Xhaka was nowhere and the Eygptian when he came on was only good for a sideways pass or two. Lets face it without him Arsenal have only the mediocrity of Aaron Ramsey to look forward to. Who would want to pay money to see that waster in action. However it is time to consider Ozil leaving the club. If he won't have a go, then he is not worth the money he is asking for to extend his contract.Seriously, it is time to rebuild and that should have started with a new manager, and the departure of the likes of Walcott, Giroud, Ramsey non tackling fullbacks, Mertsacker and Yes Ozil. - Post No. 101580

Tony Evans  12:26pm 19th Dec 2016

Everyone saying the same (bar Jamerson, who is to be ignored anyway) and I can almost feel the pain radiating out from the screen! Hope Kevin is right about this being Wenger's swan song season, but I have that awful feeling he'll still be stinking the place out in 17/18. What is going to save him this time? The FA Cup again, or a fluky run to the CL quarters or semis? Or has his luck finally run out - I damn well hope so! - Post No. 101581

Ron  12:28pm 19th Dec 2016

Joe S - We used to call such as Ozil a luxury player, back in the day. Football hasnt changed much despite what TV and pundits tell us. He s a good player in a team full of other good players and players who will do the legwork and donkey work for him. He ll give you yr little cameos here and there, but in English football hes not a lot of use. Hes the epitome of a Wenger buy because Wenger has always arrogantly thought he can buck the trend of whats needed in a top team in the EPL. Ozil is the evidence (for those who still need it) that he cant buck the trend. He was never a sensible buy in the first place. The luxury players of the past were such as Hoddle and Tony Currie and Rod Marsh and Stan Bowles, Willie Morgan etc etc. The biggest difference betweeen that and Ozil is that none were cowards. - Post No. 101582

jeff wright  12:31pm 19th Dec 2016

Jumpers for Goalposts ,I agree 100% with your views only mass protest at home and away games or Wengo(yawn) failing to win a top 4 trophy place to fund his huge 8+m wages. I'm convinced that his wages are linked to winning a top 4 place and that is why he is paid that huge amount of money.It can't be for winning real tropies ! Personally I think that mass demo's are unlikely because the club,with its policy of pricing out the old or even new local working class type supporter, in favour of theatre crowd types will ensure that. There will most likely be some booing if results in home games go pear-shaped but I can't see the middle class luvvies who populate the Emirates Stadium ripping seats up and storming onto the pitch or even demonstrating outside the AFC holdings offices where the old Etonian merchant banker Chipo sits sipping his Gin and Tonics while around him Ivan,Hank ,Chuck and Josh beaver away at their nefarious financial activities on behalf of Syrupy Stan back on the ranch in the good ol' U.S of A. - Post No. 101583

Paul Ward  12:40pm 19th Dec 2016

Not much too add, can't disagree with any of the above. Would like to re emphasise one point though, there is something we as fans can do. Once we get stuffed by Bayern, or before if possible, let's make it noisily known at matches that we want the manager gone, will definitely make an impact. - Post No. 101584

Ron  12:51pm 19th Dec 2016

Hi Jeff - there ll never be much protest there as you say. Ive said many times that the last 12 yrs of what we ve had at AFC could only happen at a London Club. The fans are passive and football isnt as fundamental to fans in the SE plus the social types who go there now as you say, wont kick up a fuss. I speak to many in the regions who support non top 4 Clubs who cant understand why AFC fans moan. They think it really is great football and that top 4 every yr is what they d give an arm and a leg for etc etc. My view is that any Clubs fans from the Midlands or especially in the NW given the same would eventually see things as we do but wouldn't have taken anything like 12 years to see it. Its also because there isnt widespread antipathy commented upon by football fans elsewhere as well as in London towards AW and the Club that insulates the regime we ve got. The media and press have never been honest in their appraisal of AFC and Wenger this last 8 years or so either. Im sure many think as we do, but wont ever print or say it. AW is a very media favoured man because the media like to play with and torment him. That odious short arsed little p---k Mourinho is on the money when he says that the media look at AW through a different prism to everybody else. - Post No. 101585

David  12:51pm 19th Dec 2016

"Arsene must honour his contract.. ...so we have to wait until the summer." Does anyone really believe Wenger won't be Arsenal manager next season? I suspect Arsenal will make the top 4 again and Wenger will sign a new contract again because the board are happy with the current situation of being a top club qualifying for The Champions League year in year out. Maybe if Wenger doesn't qualiy for the Champions League they may change their opinion, but even then I suspect that they would give him another chance. Not since Terry Neill have Arsenal sacked a manager because of supporter discontent, and then the team were seriously underachieving in mid table. Expect at least two more groundhog seasons. - Post No. 101586

DJ  12:58pm 19th Dec 2016

Sorry Ed, Sterling scored the winner from De Bruyne's crossfield pass despite Monreal's valiant efforts! Sorry to be pedantic but don't wish to talk about the game. - Post No. 101587

Goodmayes Gooner  13:01pm 19th Dec 2016

I saw more effort, commitment and desire from my son's under 10 team Sunday morning, than the second half yesterday. We have have had a number of fortunate refereeing decisions go our way this season, so cant complain about yesterday's. If Carroll was brought on at half time for West Ham the other week we would probably have capitulated to them as well as well. If the team is supposedly different to last year's as we keep reading, it is that they would appear even more lightweight. - Post No. 101588

Peter Wain  13:03pm 19th Dec 2016

this season is like all of the other seasons since we last won the pl We learn nothing from the last decade and the certainty of our defeat to Bayern Munich is only matched by the realisation that both Ozil and Sanchez will be sold this summer ad we will buy no one in this transfer window. Quite what the owner the DEO and the manager expect to achieve over the next two years is beyond me. Why we do not put our strongest team in the league cup which is a competition we can win whilst putting out our strongest side in the CL which is a competition we cannot win defies belief. Still until the owner sells this is the reality we face. Highest ticket prices in the world and lowest level of transfer activity. Top four behave we have no chance of it this year. - Post No. 101589

jeff wright  13:05pm 19th Dec 2016

I guess that supporters of clubs like Villa for example Ron would be happy to change their lot for ours but other ones, such as United and Chelsea, would not be ! We really should have done a lot better on the trophy front over the past decade and despite the various excuses that have been drummed up for us not doing so, the fact is that Wengo's(yawn) appalling record at top level in Europe, going back 20 years, shows that he is not really a top manager he has always lacked the tactical nous side of football management he is just a training ground coach using outdated training methods time has passed him by .He does a passable job though as an accountant ! Syrupy loves that. - Post No. 101590

Ron  13:15pm 19th Dec 2016

Yes Jeff, though at Chelsea its RA who wont put up with it, not their fans. He seems to review where Chelsea are every day. I think the fans there would cope with 12 yrs of Wengerism just the same as we have. Villa s fans would weep with joy at a mere one Season in the CL im sure just as you say, but im also sure they would kick up a stink if they were accustomed to our diet of sterility for very long, if it was the case that they had the same resources as AFC have and were being asked to pay the same prices for each yrs groundhog day, thats my point. - Post No. 101591

Mad Monk  13:19pm 19th Dec 2016

Will Ozil be dropped? Doubt it will happen maybe a token gesture of being benched for one game just to appease the easily fooled (all the Untold contributors). Talking of Untold they are all turning on Henry and calling him a traitor for blasphemy against Lord Wenger and stating how happy us fan's, who pay our dues and attend games , (not reading a live commentary from Canada) who want Wenger gone will be very happy about that result. Well OMG Arsenal (I know you read this ) as Untold will not air my views here's my response to you, I and all of my Arsenal friends, of whom there are many and have known for between 30-40 years have never ever wanted Arsenal to lose no matter how much it affected another teams standing, unlike Spuds going all the way to Manchester and wanting their team to lose, so why don't you come on here and give your opinion as to why Wenger should stay you mug and I really would like a reasonable argument from anyone else as to why he should remain. - Post No. 101592

mbg  13:19pm 19th Dec 2016

Yes yet another Christmas present to another manager and his team from TOF (I bet westbrom, palace, and their managers can't wait)now give us the best Xmas present ever you arrogant egoistic past it old fraud and piss of to Lapland and never come back. We want wenger out, we want wenger out. - Post No. 101593

Paul Ward  13:24pm 19th Dec 2016

David, I believe Wenger will go, and so does Kevin in the editorial, and I don't think it'll make any difference if we finish 2nd 3rd 4th or 5th to be honest. The point is we are not going to finish first, which Wenger knows only too well now, he looks like he' s had enough to me, and the feeling is completely mutual from our perspective mon ami. - Post No. 101594

Leek the Squeak  13:28pm 19th Dec 2016

It's not true, squeak , squeak, Wengie will be here forever, squeak, squeak. Only me and Jamee are true fans, squeak, squeak, Colesey used to be but he got locked up, squeak, squeak, Jeff can sniff my cheese, squeak. - Post No. 101595

Ron  13:38pm 19th Dec 2016

Well, its looking right now like its the 2 Mancs, Liverpool and Chelsea who are the top 4 this time, so we ll see if AW can hack that soon enough i guess. - Post No. 101596

mbg  13:39pm 19th Dec 2016

Danny, your dead right there there'll be more party's and party poppers popping all over the country and champagne drunk and fans pissed than there was at the millennium, and all the AKB wengerites will be snivelling and drowning their sorrows on room temperature water. wenger out today. - Post No. 101597

Tony Evans  13:47pm 19th Dec 2016

As ever its the manner of the defeat that leaves us all feeling so distanced from our club; a club that was once famed for its resilience and defensive solidity. At times we may not have had the player quality in the squad compared to what we have now, in times gone by but, my God, we more than made up for it with sheer bloody mindedness and a fierce will to win. It sounds daft I know but I was proud of what Arsenal stood for and, rightly or wrongly, you had the feeling that the players were to. Wenger has gone from hero to zero for the way he has turned us in to the club that can always be bullied, and that are the soft touches of the Premier League. - Post No. 101598

Mark from Aylesbury  13:48pm 19th Dec 2016

Mad Monk - you'll never get a reasoned view from a committed AKB they tend to support the manager more than the institution. A lot of people who like Arsenal but without the emotional commitment will say "good old Arsene" you should see the response when I give my reply. I think he will be off and I do actually think if he doesn't go it will begin to kick off. I've got the champagne on ice waiting. - Post No. 101599

jjetplane  13:56pm 19th Dec 2016

What is really funny is that I predict a decent season for Jose from now in and he is clever enough to play the Santa to Utd supporters by giving shirts out. Say what you like about him - he is more a football man than Weng Ho ever was. The PL is moving on and now it is about the Klopp and Conte sideline antics that are getting the crowds going. i for one am enjoying that facet though like SKG I watch my football elsewhere now and after a decade of simply going from the PL down to 9th tier I could not be happier. There are days at my local club that are a better watch than Arsenal going through the corporate motions and feeding their bemused fan base a oh so predictable product. Looking forward to our crunching local derby on Boxing Day and I can remember Arse v Totts from the naughty 70s and before home and away. Last one I went to may have been with that Henry goal who Untold refer to as Judas. Wrighty almost said Weng Ho is over yesterday so I feel this could be the last season unless he wants to stink it up before the Chinese move which I bet is all that interests him. It will do even less there and for more money. Thank **** for County Football. Big ups for Balo, Liam, Deano and the lads .... - Post No. 101600

mbg  14:01pm 19th Dec 2016

King Jeremy, yes the usual cry from the AKB cronies, but who do you get to replace him, blah blah, always vocal when nobody is seen to be available, but they were, and always are strangely quiet when there is (they'd sicken you as much as wenger) but there is, as you say it doesn't matter who as anyone will be better than the embarrassment we have. wenger out. - Post No. 101601

GoonerRon  14:16pm 19th Dec 2016

Well, that was a load of bollocks. I hate the fact we went there with such a small club mentality - they have been fragile at the back for a while and without 2 or 3 key players so why not stand toe-to-toe with them and beat them on the front foot? Also, it drives me nuts when Wenger pulls out the 'jaded' card - why not make more changes to freshen up the starting XI or make your subs earlier? AAARRRRGGGHHHHH. - Post No. 101602

mbg  14:29pm 19th Dec 2016

Cyril, see there you go again, completely missing the point, intentionally no doubt such is your love for wenger, it doesn't matter who we buy, l'll repeat that for you just in case, it doesn't matter who we buy that's not going to solve the problem, have you and others not realised that by now, even after all this time ? wenger is he problem, it's a new manager we need and that is plain to be seen, I've no doubt even for wengerites. wenger out. - Post No. 101604

jeff wright  14:45pm 19th Dec 2016

I guess Ron that Rom at Chelsea, who is in it for glory and Syrupy who admits that he is in it for the cash is the main difference between us and them. It's been said many times before though that Wengo(yawn) would never have survived for donkeys years without winning anything at any top club .Mourinho is right Wengo(yawn) is in a unique position in World Football his position is like a bullet-proof monk one unless things have changed .However, I will wait and see on that because I believe it's all about a top 4 place and the cash cow Champions League places regarding whether or not Wengo(yawn) goes or stays. Syrupy doesn't worry about winning trophies football or soccer is just a money making scam to him so I will be surprised if he risks derailing the gravy train that Wengo(yawn) drives if the old fraudster manages to get it to its intended destination .platform 2,3 or 4 is for Syrupy job done. - Post No. 101605

Norsgeneral  14:59pm 19th Dec 2016

I am actually quite pleased with our demise over the last week. At least we will not be lulled onto a false sense of believing we have a chance of winning the PL, only to suffer the disappointment of opportunities missed in a few months time. I would even be ok with a couple more reverses, to see us drop to 6th and stay there, perhaps even dropping further. No CL, no EL next year. Just look what it is doing for Chelsea. And of course definitely no Wenger. There is always a positive in a negative. You just have to have to look for it. Plus I can look forward to the FA cup game excitement, rather than the stale fair that is the premier league. - Post No. 101607

Ron  15:03pm 19th Dec 2016

Agree Jeff. Ending up 5th or lower is an essential for AW to resign or be sacked. Without that, he stays put unless the vibes of discontentment do actually reach him and offends his pride to the point that he feels he cant carry on. Arsene is very uncomfortable with criticism as is any Emperor with unchecked power. Beats me why he does it anyway at his age with his bank balance. Must be bloody barmy! Its all of that power i suppose. - Post No. 101608

jeff wright  15:41pm 19th Dec 2016

Ron, Wengo(yawn) is the epitome of a control freak I would even rate him as being worse than Sir Ferguson was .At the old Iron Gaffer was not too proud to ask others to help him out with the coaching and tactics.Apparently all that any assistants to Wengo(yawn) do is to put out the plastic cones on the training ground pitch for the garden gnomes to run around when practising one of Wengo's(yawn) 25 pass walk the ball into the net pass the parcel moves that usually end up nowhere.One problem for Syrupy's crew that will not concern them is the Glum and Glummer situation it's not by chance that these pair of flopped in Spain's la liga play-boys have been allowed to run down their contracts to the point where Wengo can do his playing 'hard -ball' act .In reality this is just balls there is no way that Syrupy will lose millions to just panderr to Wengo's(yawn) enormous ego .In fact it looks to me like Syrupy wants to sellthe want the going rate pair of cretins. How that useless **** Ozil thinks that he is worth 250k a week is anyone's guess .Will anyone though want to buy these pair given their ages and wage demands .The nightmare scenario is that they accept what's on offer from Syrupy and stay another 3 years ! Despite all the bullshine about Sancho the fact is that he has never looked happy at AFC and looks to me to have problems regarding his relationship with other players. As I have said before most of his legendary alleged Herculean efforts are just wasted energy and no way is he a proper number 9 - like Costa or Ibra at United. Sancho's biggest problem is that he is neither .like Wally as well,one thing or another and I reckon that is why Barcelona sold him to us and replaced him with Suarez who actually does know how to play the striker role properly. We have been crying out for years for a proper top number 9 type but hey Wengo(yawn) is a genius and he of course knows best. Or so it's claimed. - Post No. 101609

RW  15:44pm 19th Dec 2016

Hey All Wobs if you keep highlighting corruption in football your messiah might get all offended again and up sticks! Be careful what you wish for! - Post No. 101610

Wardy  16:26pm 19th Dec 2016

I can't even be bothered to dissect yesterday's no show ,,,,, predictable and embarrassing and the team should be ashamed - Post No. 101611

CORNISH GOONER  16:41pm 19th Dec 2016

Good & honest reporting as always Kevin. I have a sinking feeling that for once Myles Palmer has called it correctly & the new contract will be revealed at a more appropriate time!! The only positive for me who enjoys the history of the game is that the reality of our recent seasns puts the final nail in the coffin of the "greatest Arsenal manager ever" claim by the Faithful. Damned sure Herbert Chapman, had he lived long enough, would have kept on winning things OR would have been honest to know his time was up. The truth is that AFC have always been The, or one of, THE MONEY BAGS CLUBS. All that rubbish about steering us through the period of austerity is like everything else that emanates from the club in this Premiership era - just pure spin. What Bank/Billionaire would not offer funds to a huge club in a huge city to finance a "necessary" ground move? Also there is a sadness to things inasmuch as we actually do owe Arsene a hell of a lot for his early years but, boy, how he has taken advantage for the last stage of his career & in so doing wrecked his Legacy. Absolutely no self awareness - just a large dollop of hubris. - Post No. 101612

Ron  16:56pm 19th Dec 2016

Agree Jeff - Arsenal are only guided by the sell on values of players. AW has sais so often enough himself. At their respective ages, they ll have no sell on worth if the contracts are extended and they choose to see them out and decline while they choose to do so. Both are as good as sold in my view. In Ozils case, selling will be good for the Club. Sancho is quite a good player but as you say, hes not a CF. He can only succeed consistently in that role v the weaker teams. His hype is greater than the real thing in my view of him. I personally cant stand the Ozil type players. A few flowery cameos every 4 weeks v yr Bmouths and Hulls etc or so cuts no ice with me and his shirking the cut in the heavy going matches makes me sick. Hes a prima donna who seems to think hes above the spade work. Not all made of the same stuff as most German players, though hes more Turkish than Germanic it seems. Wenger wasted Podolski. He could have made a fist of the CF role in the absence of anybody else to step up. - Post No. 101613

CT Gooner  17:00pm 19th Dec 2016

Not sure I agree with all the off side claims. The first to me was level, and the last I looked, benefit should always be given to the attacking player. The second argues that Silva interfered, that may be a little more compeling, but he wasn't that close to the ball. The fact we sat back looking dazed for the whole second half is why we lost. - Post No. 101614

mbg  17:07pm 19th Dec 2016

Have you heard the latest excuse from our resident embarrassment ? (hopefully not for to much longer) the Arsenal Everton game should have been played on Wednesday instead of Tuesday, you couldn't make it up, what a fooking waste of space, go now you embarrassment. - Post No. 101615

Nick  17:10pm 19th Dec 2016

Im on the same page as the Wenger out brigade have been since he showed his ineptitude as a motivator when we lost our unbeaten record at Old Trafford to Rooneys cheating and a homer ref ! A REAL manager would have used that injustice to fire the team up to go on another long unbeaten run and retain the title but the team SULKED and Wenger sulked right along with them and we've never seriously looked like winning a title since ! He compounded my view of him after the debacle at St Andrews when Gallas brought this club into disrepute! Another game where injustice cost us but the team and manager wernt men enough to USE it to fuel a final charge to win it for Edurado instead once more they sulked and Wenger sulked with them and an eight point lead was squandered ! Wenger is likely a very nice man but we all know nice guys never finish first ! He IS a sulker it's in his make up and it transmits to the players and without a leader like an Adams on the pitch there is no one to fire the team up! So yes I agree with all the WOBs but please can some of you "yawn" stop taking a word you like and flogging it to death "yawn" it's repetitive and boring much like Wengers " tactics " "YAWN" 😉 - Post No. 101616

OBG  17:13pm 19th Dec 2016

As someone recently said "Arsenal the team that just keeps giving", if there is one team any opposition wants to play when they are on a bad run it is Arsenal. Wenger has been mugging us off and stealing a very , VERY Handsome living for over 10 seasons time he was GONE. Until he is gone Arsenal will never again win the Prem, nor the CL - WE may qualify and ensure the Wig Wearer gets the CL qualifying money, but that is it. #WENGER OUT. - Post No. 101617

Roy  17:21pm 19th Dec 2016

And another thing - among AW's plethora of excuses where he blamed everything and everyone but himself, was a reference to the CL game. Taking a full side to Basel was a crass and stupid decision in itself. Make a decent and proactive decision for once Arsene - and just go. - Post No. 101618

GS  17:22pm 19th Dec 2016

Nick : good post, the sulking mentality of Wenger transmits to the players and that is why we have the same old season after season , players come and go, the common denominator in all this is Wenger . The current philosophy of the club is that deep that only a clean sweep of the whole regime will repair it, if Wenger moves upstairs and SK IG stay put we are in for lots more pain. Love Arsenal - hate regime . - Post No. 101619

Mark  17:27pm 19th Dec 2016

Dear Arsene, not all AFC fans get it (older ones do) but we know that george graham (1986-1995) & david dein left you a hardcore Backbone for you to carry on with once you arrived. you sprinkled some Flair and new Fitness Regimes onto someone else's Backbone because you were intelligent and you saw AFC's DNA. Now and Since 2006 we have None of the old Arsenal DNA left anywhere in the club and we are the worse for it. No grit muscle backbone or determination or fight. A Llser mentality that make excuses rather than calls it as it is. We see your formula which not everyone noticed. Your teams do very well against the bottom teams and continue to fail to compete against the other top 6 teams. Now we are on merrygoaround that we cannot get off of and it is frankly very boring. The owners simply dont compare with Ambramovic who always wants what is best for the fans because he is the biggest one ! failure or boredom is not an Option at chelsea and I for one respect that but I have lost my respect for you and the current Regime. - Post No. 101620

Augustus Flair  17:27pm 19th Dec 2016

Can I just take advantage of this sentimental Christmas season to say just how much I enjoyed strolling down Elwood St to Highbury Stadium after a beer or two in The Gunners pub to watch a side ennobled by the presence of DB10, T Hnery and P Viera, to name but three? No? Oh, sorry about that then. Wenger out. - Post No. 101621

jeff wright  17:35pm 19th Dec 2016

Okay best give the yawning a rest although I'm sure that most folk find the thought of Wengo inducing that feeling in them if not then well.... . mbg I had smile on reading Wengo's comments about the Everton should have been played on a Wednesday but surely this would have meant a day less rest before the weekend game>? You couldn't make it up. - Post No. 101622

Mark from Aylesbury  17:43pm 19th Dec 2016

Gooner Ron - you do call it out when it isn't right fair play to you. Personally I don't see how you can hold onto a support the manager view when he appears hapless and so often out smarted by managers across the Premiership and Europe. The Arsenal team that is made up of very good players will often dip below a level of what we expect. It is all too easy knowing that Wenger will say bugger all to them. Recently I highlighted Eddie Jones who keeps the England team on tender hooks for a place. I suspect he is very respectful to the players in that he won't do the Maureen shun treatment but each and every game he probably quite matter of factly says , you're either in or out. The results speak for themselves. The crèche is the entire opposite of this, but without the big voices in the team they can always have that fail ready in the locker. If I were an Arsenal player Id feel an odd mixture of being overly comfortable and occasionally depressed at my performance. In industry this is classic redundancy fodder. I wouldn't blame you if at some point you called for his head. I did about 5 years back. - Post No. 101623

mbg  18:08pm 19th Dec 2016

CT Gooner, spot on, read Mark Halsey (ref watch column in the Sun today) and his view/verdict blows TOF's excuses along with his AKB apologists right out of the water. wenger out and his apologists with him. - Post No. 101624

anthony walters  18:28pm 19th Dec 2016

i'll be very surprised if wenger is our manager next season.some say what is different from previous years ?i'd say his contract is up so it avoids sacking him it allows him to go in a mutually respectful manner . he hasn't had to sell his best players he has had money to spend and yet the same old arsenal turn up on the pitch good enough on their day to beat anyone ,good enough to beat lesser teams but when in pressure games too often lack balance ,ideas ,resilience and game management and a ruthless desire to win.there have been fan protests and arsene is surely aware his past achievements and overall goodwill amongst most older fans in particular can only stretch so far.we need fresh impetus ideas even if it is a risk getting rid of arsene i'd rather take it than see the same failings year by year.people say look at man utd after fergie but even in that after fergie period we are only 2 fa cups to their one. - Post No. 101625

Radfordkennedy  18:38pm 19th Dec 2016

Some great comments Jeff,Ron, and all the usual suspects as well we cant all be wrong can we?....like many on here ive watched our team for a bloody long time,and cant help but feel that that certain something we had about us is being ebbed away as each game passes,weve all seen teams far worse than the current one,if you judge it on pure talent alone,but those teams of yesteryear would at least have the attitude of "ok,if you are going to beat us we're at the very least going to make your bloody eyes water",but this lot wet themselves when the opposition get in the penalty area,full backs who cant defend,center halves who jump under the ball and who turn their backs rather than take one for the team,i think if Bouldy mutinied and got up and shouted at Ozil or the God awful Xhaka they would burst into tears.The trouble here is that this team are winging it every week,and when the plan which appears to be just give it to Sanchez and hope for the best doesn't work,they wait to get beat in fact id say they expect to get beat,watching so called world class players walking around the pitch with not an ounce of fight in any of them is a disgrace to our club...I honestly dont think AW will walk away he holds everyone in such disdain,with that typical Franco/German air of aloofness he'll stay for another 8 mil,he'll never walk away from that sort of dough just because of a few dissenting voices at the final whistle,he'll wait until he's sacked and take 16 mil with him,he might be the man that football strategy forgot,but he knows a pound note when he sees it.... - Post No. 101626

mbg  18:38pm 19th Dec 2016

jw, yes talk about being confused, LOL, but that's what old men get and become when their past it, a perfect example. Go now old man. - Post No. 101627

HowardL  18:38pm 19th Dec 2016

I think yesterday we may have lost Alexis. I hope not, but he looked to me at the end like a man who had given his all but it had not worked and he had decided to leave. Merry Christmas everyone indeed! An excellent report Kev, although I thought that we could have finished them off by half-time with just a little more effort and tactical nous - it was there for the taking. For me yesterday was every bit as depressing as United 8-2, Liverpool 5-1 and Chelsea 6-0. Maybe even more so, as yesterday there were no excuses of injuries, stadium debt etc. Quite the reverse in fact, as we now have a much larger squad. Therefore the only other reason remaining is poor management. What guidance did he give to the players at half time, if anything? How could they have defended so spinelessly in the second half? Why was Ozil not subbed for lack of effort? I did think the first goal was offside and the second should have been disallowed for Silva's position, even though I don't think Cech would have saved it. However, the only person who could have changed things yesterday was Wenger, but he did nothing and then hid behind flimsy refereeing excuses. Nothing will change until he goes. - Post No. 101628

mbg  19:18pm 19th Dec 2016

anthony walters, fair post, although I don't think it's a risk getting rid of him, and don't forget their community shield won by Moyes inside nine months, more than wenger won in nine years or more. - Post No. 101629

anthony walters  19:32pm 19th Dec 2016

mbg cheers .i support the team whilst at the game and do believe most top managers would love to have this squad .i had an open mind about this season but deep down had reservations wengers decisions and picking who players he favours instead of balance and form would cost us as it did in the past decade .all excuses used up.i felt that middle of last season this year would be the end of wengers reign.despite his flaws i accepted and supported him for the bigger picture in the past. if no title or champions league and i believe it will be his last season. - Post No. 101631

Bonzo  19:46pm 19th Dec 2016

Jamee - you stink the place out with your whining. Be a man for once, grow a pair and accept a defeat in a sporting way which so far is sadly lacking and a major character fault in both you and your side kick Leek. It's people like you who give Arsenal a bad name. I remember a season ago you were crowing you were a super supporter, barely 6 months later you informed everyone you were leaving your family and deserting Arsenal. You've fallen away as a man, a shadow lurking with your whines. Either Buck up or back out. Arsenal won't miss you neither will the new Manager after Wengo finally clears off. - Post No. 101632

jjetplane  19:56pm 19th Dec 2016

Walter Jamerson Leekie Atwood-Brickfields reckon it was the ref wot robbed Arsene of 12 titles ..... Wot is RON (Trump) on about with he is more Turkish than Germanic hence the errr 'effeminate nature as bequeathed by the great white logocentricity on the eastern hordes....' Bloody Orientalists hey! Yer getting lazy lad .... - Post No. 101633

mbg  20:25pm 19th Dec 2016

A great quip today from journo Dave Kidd, they (Arsenal) were out tackled in midfield by a team whose manager says he doesn't do tackling, lol, that says it all, what a fooking joke wenger has become. wenger out tonight. - Post No. 101634

GoonerRon  20:26pm 19th Dec 2016

@ Mark from Aylesbury - to be honest if we made a change of manager at the end of the season I really would be up for that. I still have a bit of hope we can do something in the league (hey, I'm an optimist) and choose to focus my comments and energy constructively on the team rather than getting completely bent out of shape about Wenger. He does frustrate me massively at times (as per my comments above) but I still really respect the man. - Post No. 101635

GS  20:37pm 19th Dec 2016

GoonerRon: agree with you're post , don't dislike Wenger as a fellow human being, it's his football acumen that most of us question . The whole place is flat, the fans are divided , the smell of fear has been hanging over us for 10yrs , a massive overhaul is needed , manager & regime, we live in hope that one day a new vitality will lift the gloom . Love Arsenal - hate regime . - Post No. 101636

Charles Charlie Charles  20:44pm 19th Dec 2016

Oh how I long for the day to finally witness how a proper manager could turn this squad of (mostly)talented players into a team. My gut feeling is that the club is waiting for a 'good vibe' winning run again (once the title talk pressure is off of course!)to announce 2 more years. - Post No. 101637

Mark  22:06pm 19th Dec 2016

hell leave us in the crapper end this season. 6th place with Ozil and Alexi wanting out. it will be a tough man to come in and put a spine back in this club - Post No. 101638

KC  22:20pm 19th Dec 2016

There is an air of cowardice about the manager with his refusal to take Ozil off. An air of cowardice with his reluctance to avoid confrontation with the players. A Walters is correct this is a talented squad but sadly Wenger cannot manage lead motivate or Instill discipline to his players. It's almost unintelligent to not realise we are to easy to score against, and not change, the same weaknesses season after season, arrogance beyond belief not to adapt or admit your wrong. Granit sums Wenger up, we should have bought a mobile defensive midfielder called Kante! Instead he spends 35 million on Granit another luxury footballer when we have to many, no pace, and a suspect temperament, Kante was a must but Wenger just does not understand football without the ball. I sit at the Emirates and we appear so fragile at the back, open to counter attacking football. It's time for a new younger manager, a manager that demands attacking football where you don't stop playing when you go 1 up. - Post No. 101639

Paul Ward  23:02pm 19th Dec 2016

Amazing how completely ordinary Everton looked tonight in their biggest game of the season, how clueless Koeman looked when pitted against a superior team with a clued up manager. Compare and contrast with the events of last Tuesday , says it all really.Have already sold my West Brom ticket, don't fancy watching Pulis stick another nail in the coffin, merry Christmas everyone . - Post No. 101640

Fast hare  23:13pm 19th Dec 2016

Myles Palmer says that Wenger gets a new 2 year contract. Arsenal fans must vote with their feet if the want their club back there is no other way as Kroenke only understands money(he even married it). To me the greatest disservice the former owners did was to sell out the club to soccer's Greed Is Good Kroenke. - Post No. 101641

jjetplane  0:02am 20th Dec 2016

.... Ohhhh/Jingle bells Jingle bells Jingle all the way/oh wot fun it is to see/Weng Ho lose away! Happy Xmas you pagan lovlies! & bollox to the Southwold Saddo ..... Liverpool under Klopp are another side leaving Weng Ho behind. - Post No. 101643

mbg  0:16am 20th Dec 2016

Just watched the collapse from 4-0 up from Arsenal at Newcastle in 2011 joey barton and all, on Sky sports 1 football gold with that useless walking advert for a casualty ward diaby remember him ? and the useless waste of space himself wenger doing the penguin rap at referees back then too, what has changed even in those five years ? sweet f**k all, we're just the same now even f*****g worse this useless waste of space should have went after then, and here he still is still stinking the place out with the same old same old, no progress whatsoever, in fact nothing but regression and he's still here it wouldn't have happened or be happening at any other club on this planet, a fooking disgrace. Go now wenger your a nobody. - Post No. 101644

Jamerson  0:17am 20th Dec 2016

Stop being a mong jjetplane you should know by now all I speak is the truth.This is what the bible has to say about Christmas written some 4,000 years ago.Jeremiah 10/Thus says the LORD: Do not learn the way of the Gentiles; do not be dismayed at the signs of heaven, for the Gentiles are dismayed at them. 3 For the customs of the peoples are futile; for one cuts a tree from the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the ax. 4 They decorate it with silver and gold; they fasten it with nails and hammers so that it will not topple. - Post No. 101645

Nick  0:21am 20th Dec 2016

Merry Christmas to you too Jamerson you can spend it learning about the game of football it's quirks and foibles and nuances oh yeah and the rules of the game and perhaps a basic understanding of tactics then when you next post perhaps it will have a modicum of intelligence about it ! You have no idea about the game you profess to follow or indeed this team ! I have not read ONE sensible comment from you in analysis of a match just a diatribe of abuse against posters who DO understand the game and ridiculous assertions that officials actually decide all footballing issues ! We all know that mistakes made by refs etc can be costly and I do not subscribe to the view these things even themselves up over a season but to win titles and cups a good team must OVERCOME and render IRRELEVANT such slings and arrows and go on to triumph in SPITE of them! To do that however you need a team with CHARACTER and a manager to MATCH we have NEITHER! - Post No. 101646

DW Thomas  0:32am 20th Dec 2016

Piss poor second half. For all of Ozils gifts, his laziness and lack of effort should drop him to the bench. Sanchez gives his all and should be given a good contract. I like Ozil, few have his vision, but last night makes me second guess his character. Bring Jack back and give him a shot instead. He never hides and works both sides. He could be even better than Ozil if given the chance and if he isn't overplayed. We miss Mustafi and Santi. Wenger is too old and out of ideas to continue. His subs alone are reason to sack him. How did Ox get injured? Why was Wally on at the end? We sat back and let them possess and create for most of the second half. Why? They missed their best attacker and defender, yet we gifted them both goals. Sane was their only threat and we couldn't cope. No leadership on or off the field. A bunch of overpaid pampered princes with little desire to win the title. So f...ing tired of it each season. This club title contenders? You must be having a laugh!!! - Post No. 101647

Pete Van Hoeven  7:32am 20th Dec 2016

Jamee - hello theesh ish Pete from the Netherlands. We know good football, we smokes good cigar, drink coffee and genever. Jaa we live a good life. We have many good footballer, Denis, Marc, Gianni also good. We play good football. You understand? I look at your team Arsenal, I look at Liverpool. They both play Everton. What difference? Ish it manager? Now Klopp he good, but Wenger? Now Wenger he 1 nil up then he 2-1 down. Then he cry like big girl. Then you cry like big girl why? Wenger, now Wenger he really sheete, yeah really sheete You stop crying Jamee, become like proper Dutchman and start finking. Finking better than your crying. - Post No. 101649

John F  8:11am 20th Dec 2016

Mbg that Newcastle game was my worst ever Arsenal game.I was at York ,Walsall games. Utd 8-2 ,Chavs 6-0 come close but to be 4-0 to Newcastle with half an hour to go and nearly lose it 5-4 unbelievable.That was the final straw concerning Wenger for me.It didn't help that I had a Geordie brother in law who rang me afterwards just to rub it in. - Post No. 101650

Bonzo  8:25am 20th Dec 2016

Jamee - very few of us are interested in your Christmas beliefs however a good few us wonder about how you try to strut about as a hardman but whine and bitch even more than Wengo when we lose. This feeble crumbling bravado of yours shows the real truth. A big girls blouse who must of been a bundle of joy with no TV or Christmas decorations. Go bore someone else. I know start writing to Untold! ****fields will love you. - Post No. 101651

Wobby Wotten  8:50am 20th Dec 2016

Did we just get relegated? Has somebody died? Ok... I'd better send a wreath to the O.G. office. It appears that Arsenal FC are no longer. Shame, cos I quite liked that French guy in charge. - Post No. 101652

Tony Evans  8:55am 20th Dec 2016

The fact that Wenger quite literally turned his back on the winning combination of pace, guile, tough tackling and defensive nous that epitomised 1998-2006 still amazes me. I don't buy into the stadium move forcing his hand; for me it was all about his cherished vanity youth project that was doomed to fail before it even started. Wenger has virtually single-handedly changed the DNA of the club I grew up with, so we now resemble a Spuds / Westham outfit in disguise! Unforgiveable in my book - in fact it must be the first time in living memory for me that the Spuds look better defensively than we do! - Post No. 101654

GS  9:09am 20th Dec 2016

The last 2 Everton games have shown 2 managers styles . Wengers Arsenal, slack and ill disciplined, with no game sense even after taking a 1 goal lead. Klopps Liverpool, no 1 goal lead, but able to shut out Everton and barely give them a sniff and winning the game when it mattered. Liverpool may not win the PL but they are likely to finish top 4 in Klopps 1st full season. We are expected to win the PL, but after 12 bare seasons likely to finish top 4 at a push....Wenger has just run out of ideas, lets hope this is his last season. Love Arsenal - Hate Regime. - Post No. 101655

Ron  10:15am 20th Dec 2016

JJ - I was talking footie styles re Ozil not race, you idiot. You used the word 'effeminate', not me. Grow up! - Post No. 101657

1971 Gooner  10:37am 20th Dec 2016

OK - I appreciate there is a little more to football management than running and shouting at people, but why did AW simply sink into his coat when there was still at least a chance of getting a point at 1-1? Pep on the other hand appeared to be relaying tactical instructions regularly, as well as giving Freddie Mercury at Live Aid a run for his money down the touchline. Did I actually hear "We dropped little bit physically second half" in Sky's post-match interview? Merry Christmas to Kev and all at the website and in the magazine; keep it up boys. - Post No. 101661

Nick  11:07am 20th Dec 2016

Jamerson is almost correct with his history lesson on Christmas in Britain it was the Roman church whose priests used the CHRIST MASS to encourage converts among the pagans who still worshipiped the old gods like Woden they did the same with Easter taken from the fertility celebration of Eostre a Saxon goddess of fertility and many other pagan festivals too , as for his mark of the beast comment surely that's reserved for that lot down the Seven Sisters road ? He doesn't aknowledge any of the points about actual FOOTBALL and the ARSENALthat I made earlier but i shouldn't be surprised it's not his area of expertise given that he knows NOTHING of the game we are all here to discuss ! - Post No. 101663

Moscow Gooner  13:50pm 20th Dec 2016

Culture of mediocrity firmly established now from top to bottom of the club, settling for fourth best. Chapman and Mee must be spinning in their graves.... I don't envy the guy coming in to replace AW: could take years to put this right - but let's start ASAP. - Post No. 101669

David  15:43pm 20th Dec 2016

@Moscow Gooner - To be fair Bertie Me was pretty mediocre on the whole. But for Dave Sexton and Don Howe he would have sunk without a trace as was shown when Bobby Campbell became coach and almost helped Arsenal into Division 2. Even Terry Neill recognised Howe was a great coach for Arsenal and brought him back as soon as he could. - Post No. 101671

Mark  16:46pm 20th Dec 2016

sums it up properly to a man who likes stats. Wenger's Arsenal has taken 7 Points out of a possible 63 in the last 21 away matches against the top 6 sides ! total proof that the Club has NO Intention to try to win a trophy. their model is keep cash coming in. absolute disgrace - Post No. 101674

Street kid  17:31pm 20th Dec 2016

Like Jamee my Homes,you dissing Christmas vibe, like its well hard, man you not eatin turkey with your brethren? Sheet blud, Southwold got sum bad endz! - Post No. 101679

mbg  20:06pm 20th Dec 2016

John F, it was then or shortly that done it for me to, I have a good mate who is a Newcastle fan (yes we have them over here too no diss to the Geordies) he never let me live it down for months, and still doesn't would you believe, even though he has no right to after all they've went through themselves since, relegations and all that, but they still remember and throw it up at every opportunity and what do I have in return ? a couple of lucky FA Cups, then he sites all our other beatings humiliations and embarrassments such is his disrespect for Arsenal now, and he's not the only one, a lot of other fans of clubs now feel the same way, i'm sure a lot of other Arsenal supporters have seen and witnessed this also not the same respect we used to have, (like when we used to have the opposition beat in the tunnel) like has been mentioned on the thread over the page a joke now, a laughing stock, and it's all because we're losers now, and it's all thanks to the king loser himself wenger. - Post No. 101691

Issue #269 - Out Now!

Gooner Editorial

16th February 2018

Frozen North Provides Relief For Arsenal

Rare comfortable away win for Gunners v Ostersunds