There are 3 trophies to play for each season, 4 if a team are in Europe; For the Arsenal, since our last trophy, we have had 28 opportunities to win a trophy. We have failed on each of those 28 occasions. This season we are currently in the running (theoretically) for another 4 trophies. The argument that Qualification for the Champions League is like a trophy is spurious. Even if it is thought of as ‘like a trophy’ the key word is ‘like. It is not a trophy.
The Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has achieved the ‘like a trophy’ trophy on seven occasions during this time period. Yes consistent Champions League Qualification is a splendid achievement, no one can deny that but for some this is an achievement that offsets the 28 failures.
If it is fair to praise Arsene Wenger for our ECL qualification record is it not fair to question Arsene Wenger regarding the 28 failures? I think it is and I think that respect is warranted but deference isn’t.
It is reasonable that accountability is part of a manager’s raison d’être, at any level of management and Arsene Wenger must be accountable for the team’s failures as much as he is praised for the teams achievements.
It seems these days that opinions are polarised about our manager and disagreement is frowned upon. The way in which Arsene Wenger responded to the press after the Aston Villa game, and indeed the way in which the gentleman of the press sensed blood was, in my view, the beginnings of something that we haven’t seen before during Arsene Wenger’s tenure.
I’ve not known such a fractured time during the last 16 years and just a cursory glance at social media will confirm that there are strong feelings about our manager on both sides and there’s the rub, the only side we should all be on is the Arsenal’s side. It’s almost as if, to some, the Arsenal itself as a club and as a team is almost secondary to debate about Mr Wenger. The stuff we don’t know about that takes place in the boardroom and in the accountancy department makes it impossible to draw any clear conclusions as to what restrictions, if any, are preventing our club winning things. What is clear is undisputable; 28 attempts 28 failures. No one can win everything that’s obvious but 28 is a massive number in the context of Arsenal Football Club.
If we get to May and that number has increased to 32 what will be the repercussions for our Manager and our club? Yet again I have to say “who knows”
away from the numbers