The Wally with the Brolly who talks to Dutch interviewers as if they were stone deaf comes to the Emirates tonight hoping to spoil the party. I am hoping that the FC Twente away kit of black will mean that Steve Maclaren will not just be mourning his exit from the competition, but also his last shred of his credibility as a club coach. Arsenal have a point to prove and the sign of a quality side, is to give a good spanking to the next side that we meet, to erase the Fulham demons. Arsene Wenger looked stressed and irritated with the reminders of that game in his pre match press conference. He has been badly let down by his players, and he has promised a return to the values that we hold dear in footballing terms.
I expect Arsene to be his usual stubborn self and put Denilson back in centre of midfield, his logic? he sees quality in Denilson and does not want to damage his confidence after one bad game. Here we have the problem with The Arsenal at the moment. Almost everyone bar the manager acknowledges that Arsenal first team do not look anything like ready to mount an assault on all three fronts. The Premiership is not decided after two games so my advice is to calm down and get a grip. As for the Champions League, well that is more straight forward until the knock out stages. The acid test tonight will come from the players, who following Arsene’s stiff defence of their quality and potential, must deliver in order to repay his faith in them.
But there in lies the problem, Arsene Wenger is I believe too trusting of some players, and not of others. If Denilson had been a goalkeeper, he would now be on the next boat to Korea, sentenced to five seasons of hard labour in a perfumed lap dancing bar for elderly ex patriots! ok seriously… Arsene Wenger is now coming under close scrutiny, and for the first time we will see whether the likes of Adebayor,Eboue, Denilson and Gallas will rally to his defence. Nothing short of big performances from these players will remove the cloud hovering over Arsene’s head at the moment. At any other club in the Premiership bar Man United and Liverpool, the tabloids would now be talking about the next two games deciding the future of the manager. However Arsene Wenger is untouchable, and for the first time, we have to accept that it is not a question of him being bigger than the club, but in fact that the Board’s strategic plans and survival are dependent solely on his performance.
Failure is not an option, or the big fat russian will come calling. The embattled board would be unable to ride the storm that would break financially and vocally if Arsenal fail to deliver this season. For the first time at our great club, there is an enormous sense of bewilderment, and a tidal wave of frustration way beyond anything that I can remember. Previously loyal Gooners are turning on Wenger’s legacy, and heresy is not so much being whispered but being shouted from the roof tops. However happily, Arsene Wenger thrives on adversity. He loves being written off, so that he can work another miracle and prove his detractors wrong. That is why I am predicting that Arsenal will win by three to five goals. We can create chances from the possession and if Adebayor plays as he did against Real Madrid, the FC Twente Keeper will be annihilated.
The transfer window closes at midnight on September 1st. Arsene Wenger is making a late flurry of sales in order to make way for the new purchase (or purchases?) No one knows who the new arrival will be and when he will arrive, and that is the beauty of it. Arsene Wenger has a plan, and no one other than Arsene Wenger is privvy to the intricacies of this plan. Whilst Arsenal fans are in disarray as they read about the departure of Senderos to AC Milan, Arsene is planning the return of the beautiful game. But hold on… for even if big Phil only departs for a season loan, to have Silvestre play in his place, is that so bad? C’mon get a grip here. if Senderos was the main solution to our problems, then we would seriously be f**ked!
So I believe that as the other clubs who make up the big four confirm their final purchases of this transfer window, it will only be Arsenal FC that will have spent their money wisely. It has amazed me how the other clubs decide to spend tens of millions of pounds during the last few days of the transfer window. What is that all about? Is it “who blinks first” played with the agents? ManU it seems are about to buy Berbatov for £30 million in order to prevent further tapping up charges to be pursued, The Scum tarts from the Lane are used to selling their morals, as they did with Chelsea in the Arnesen affair. They are going to buy Pavulochenko apparently who I rated very highly in an earlier blog. If you really want to believe the rubbish being served up as tabloid news, then Chelsea are about to part with £45 million for Robinho of Real Madrid and another £60 million for Kaka of AC Milan. Compared to all of that heavy artillery and on the back of our defeat to Fulham, our lack of transfer activity looks singularly inept at best and down right reckless at worst.
Arsene Wenger must be judged, but do it after September 1st when the window closes, not before… or you will be in danger of joining the ranks of the plastics, glory hunters and just plain weaklings as far as supporters are concerned. We may not have a powerful squad in the eyes of the media, but Arsene Wenger believes in these players, and he is the only one able to motivate them to the heights of performance similar to that seen in the San Siro last season. Have we already forgotten that marvellous evening? So my advice is to take the rough with the smooth, don your colours and stick two fingers up at those Chavs and Mancs who are laughing at us right now. If you keep the faith and cheer this team on, they will deliver. Remember it could be worse, you could be supporting a sh*t team like the scum down the Lane…
Arsenal ’til I die..!
Fabregas the King.