As an Arsenal supporter for the past 67 years I want to thank Arsène for his dedication to the Arsenal Football Club and his devotion to playing a calibre of football that is envied the world over. His 18 seasons in charge of Arsenal have been a revelation to many of us older fans who have witnessed many, many dark years where our support of the club was tested to the fullest.
Football fans are among the most fickle in sport and many of them only seem to care about winning trophies in order to give then the upper hand in bragging rights over the opposition. Thankfully there are also supporters who can see beyond a piece of silverware and fully appreciate the transformation of Arsenal into a truly world class club with world class facilities and one of the world’s top teams.
I’ve tried to understand the mentality of the anti Arsène Wenger segment of Arsenal supporters – but I just don’t get it! It’s also beyond my comprehension how Arsène stands tall and proud in face of the inane nonsense that is levelled at him regardless of his actual list of successes and achievements. A lesser individual would have accepted one of the many offers he has received from the world’s top clubs.
If we put aside the lack of silverware, for a mere eight year period, we are among the top four clubs in the UK and the top ten clubs in the world of football. So why are so many of our supporters against the manager with the longest tenure in our history and the most successful from every statistical standpoint. They choose to ignore the fact that Arsène has won more silverware than any previous Arsenal manager and his haul has only been exceeded by one other PL manager in football league history.
In the ninety two years before Arsène became our manager we managed to get into the top four on only twenty eight occasions or less than 29% of the time – during Arsène Wenger’s 18 year tenure we have been in the top four 100% of the time. However instead of applauding this incredible feat his detractors theorize that he and the Board of Directors are complacent and are satisfied to only finish in the top four – because it brings us a modicum of financial security.
I wonder how many of our current detractors have experienced being out of the running of everything before the end of October? Or winning just one league title and 2 FA Cups in a thirty four year period under the stewardship of six different managers?
There is always a lot of chit chat about our “glorious history” when in fact many, many years were nothing more than hum drum under the management of thirteen rather ordinary managers – twelve of them never even won a coin toss let alone a trophy!.
Of course I have to agree that we have had a few glorious spells – under Chapman, Allison, Whittaker, Mee and Graham – but none as glorious as the Wenger years.
I won’t bother to list his record as that is well known and the envy of all other PL managers.
I am personally fed up to the teeth with the negative, unjustified, views that are expressed against both our club and our manager. Wading through the negative comments is a laborious chore and has turned blogging into an unpleasant experience, so as a consequence I choose to blog far less than before.
I also feel that the issue is not really about the quality of our football or the calibre of our players but all to do with the lack of trophies – which in the writer’s opinion is very shallow indeed.