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Monday
May152017

Spurs' dominance, and the consequences of Arsenal missing out on top four

As Spurs attempt to finish the season in style, they said goodbye to White Hart Lane on Sunday afternoon with a 2-1 win over Man Utd. Amidst finishing above Arsenal for the first time in decades, the question some have been asking is, has there been a North London power shift? I suppose that depends on how you would define a power shift.

Some people will say that Arsenal have ruled over Spurs for 20 years, therefore their neighbours would have to achieve something similar to claim a genuine ‘power shift’. However, to me, a power shift can be signified by a sudden event or short-term change, like a dictator being strung up by his neck, but not replaced by another dictator.

Long-term dominance is not a power shift, it’s a trend.

So yes, the power in North London has shifted. It started last season when Spurs challenged for the title but Arsenal didn’t and Pochettino has cemented his short-term dominance over Wenger this season.

To make matters worse for Wenger, Liverpool now only need a home win at Middlesbrough, and Man City a healthy win from one of their two remaining fixtures against West Brom or Watford, to relegate Arsenal to Europa League football next season.

Apart from the obvious decline in footballing fortunes that Arsenal are suffering, a bigger worry for the club is the financial shift that will occur should, by this time next week, Liverpool and City damn Arsenal to Thursday night football in 2017/18.

It seems that Spurs’ rise to becoming one of the Premier League’s elite has come at the perfect time for the club. With a frighteningly expensive new stadium to build, not only are they generating substantially more income from their participation in the Champions League and new-found Premier League status, but they’re also poised to rebrand their soon-to-be-completed 61,000-capacity stadium.

‘Experts’ agree that Spurs could generate up to £400m in naming rights for the new stadium. There would also be a timely (for them) redefinition of the club’s status when it comes to negotiating new sponsorship deals. Such sums would remove some of the impact of the reported vast increase in borrowing Tottenham have had to shoulder (from an initial £500m to £800m) in finishing the project.

One foreseeable problem for Tottenham, however, will be how the players adapt to playing matches at Wembley Stadium next season. On the plus side, if Spurs can regularly come close to filling Wembley’s 91,000 seat capacity, the club would more than double its match day income, earning them an extra £45m-£70m.

As for Arsenal, relegation from the Champions League to the Europa League could not come at a worse time. Arsenal’s kit deal with Puma expires next season, and apart from the £50m income Arsenal would lose - of which they’d be lucky to claw back half even if they won the Europa league - the club will inevitably suffer the commercial fallout of non-Champions League participation in renegotiating that deal. It would likewise be disastrous if Arsenal failed to get into the top four next season too, as the Emirates deal expires in 2019.

At present, commercial deals are vitally important for European clubs looking to compete at the top financial table. As mentioned on this blog last October, Arsenal’s commercial revenues already trail badly behind their rival European elites, while the Premier League’s Short Term Cost Controls, i.e. ‘salary cap’ programme prevents clubs with wage bills in excess of £67m from increasing their wage bill by more than £7m for each of the next two seasons unless profits are driven by commercial income. If Arsenal cannot increase wages by way of higher commercial income – and there’s little evidence of that as commerical income only rose by £4m last season, they will have to sell to buy more players.

Arsenal’s recent £70m increase in turnover has been almost entirely driven by the Premier League’s new TV deal. This has helped to deliver a £40m profit this season despite the club’s dismal failure to compete for major trophies. Meanwhile, Arsenal’s wage bill is touching £200m pa, while stadium debt stands at around £200m with fixed-term repayments standing at £20m pa. The club has enough cash reserves to cover this amount - theoretically meaning that Arsenal are debt-free, but paying the debt early would forfeit Arsenal approx. £25m.

Arsenal should have a £100m war chest available for the purchase of new players this summer + whatever they can get for players they have to sell for fear of their contracts expiring in 2018. The situation is perilous with Sanchez, Ozil, Oxlade Chamberlain, Gibbs, Wilshere, Szczesny and Cazorla perfectly positioned to demand either a big wage hike (which the club can’t afford due to aforementioned PL short-term wage control costs) or leave the club this summer.

Basically, as things stand at this moment, assuming his demands are legitimate, Arsenal could barely afford to pay Ozil £300k a week, as the £160k increase alone would raise the wage bill by £8m. The wage bill might have to drop just to give Ozil the money he wants, so you can see how it’s impossible for Arsenal to hand new contracts to all those players listed above (assuming they want to stay) without having to offload others.

This further demonstrates the mess that Arsenal are actually in. The team is nowhere near competing for the Premier League or Champions League, and will be lucky to even qualify for the latter, yet in order just to keep the current failed status quo, Arsenal would have to dump a heap of players in order to finance new deals for Ozil and Sanchez and there would be little wriggle room to bring anybody else in.

Just as well Sanchez will be leaving then.

Of course, as we well know it’s not all about money – for most. A host of clubs throughout Europe are seriously outperforming Arsenal with far inferior wage budgets and spending power. However, they’re not managed by tactical cretins. Wenger’s only way to succeed at Arsenal is if another three of four players of Sanchez or Ozil’s ilk land in his lap. Unfortunately, the chances of that are remote, he can’t pay the wages anyway and would probably fight for fourth every season even if he had a £400m wage bill and double the transfer funds.

Basically, it’s blatantly obvious to any cretin that Arsenal need a manager that can punch above his weight or at least perform like one that has a £200m wage bill and blown £306m in players over the past three seasons. That’s why 100% of clubs in Europe would ensure Wenger leaves in the summer, and why the Arsenal board are mentally deranged if they don’t, from both a footballing and financial perspective.

Arsenal have made a predictable end of season return to form in recent weeks as Wenger desperately begs for boardroom clemency by claiming that Arsenal’s “fighting spirit has returned”, Ozil has “blossomed in his new position” and “Chelsea won’t be as strong next season”. Of course it’s complete rubbish, Arsenal are still the same old shit show – the only difference being they have had to go full throttle while their opponents are downing tools in preparation for their summer holidays.

Arsenal sunk Stoke 4-1 at the weekend because Stoke gave up, just like Liverpool battered West Ham 4-0 because The Hammers’ end of season party started the minute after Daniel Sturridge put Liverpool 1-0 up in the 35th minute.

Note: Arsenal Truth is now on Twitter @TruthArsenal.

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Comments should be intelligible and relevant. All others will be binned.

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Reader Comments (24)

Firstly a really thoughtful, factual piece that was very well written. As a Spurs fan I agree for you guys, to progress Wenger has to go. The financials in this article are very well articulated. Good show.

May 15, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterBrisbane POME

I find it very unrealistic that Spurs can claim £400m for naming rights to the new stadium. No matter what anyone says, Spurs is still in the shadow of Arsenal and will only get out of it if they start winning trophies season after season.

I think we could actually benefit from this summer if we get rid of Wenger, but let's say he stays beyond his welcome it will surely be the end of Per on 100 grand a week, Theo surely must be gone after his "We downed tools at CP comment" - no manager with respect for himself can take that kind of crap from a pivotal player.

Kieran Gibbs and Carl Jenkinson surely must be gone to almost playing no part at Arsenal and Joel Campbell is ripe for selling, those three will probably be on 200 grand combined a week then the sad thing will probably be bye bye to Alexis and Ozil but those two are on serious dosh. Lucas too is leaving and those three will probably be on more then 350 grand a week combined - that leaves a serious load of dosh to raise players wages and sign some new ones.

But first and foremost we must get rid of Wenger it is essential.

May 16, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterDanish Gooner

AT,

For crying out loud, how many more times does the Dear Leader have to tell you... judge him in May!

May 16, 2017 | Unregistered Commentermarinersmullet

As a Chelsea fan that follows this awesome blog. First off, your pieces are generally refreshing, ingenious and insightful, this one though is crap. You going on about the Spud scum when you said months ago that this was turning into an EPL analysis blog. Chelsea just equalled the EPL record in wins total in a single campaign at 29, also previously held by the only real team in London with European winners pedigree.

Shockingly the so called Arsenal demise has taken place during an era of Chelsea dominance that equals that of any club in the past whether it be pool of the 70s, 80s the Manure of 90s. Chelsea has undoubtedly ruled English football for a larger part of the 2000s and now the 2010s all the records of any significance are Chelsea.

Managers that won the EPL in their first season? There are four, with the exception of Pellegrini the rest are Chelsea managers. Highest points total in a single campaign 95 points. Now on the verge of setting a new record of 30 wins in the EPL. Add to that, Chelsea are only one of four clubs in England that has won every European trophy. Also the only club in Europe that has held both the Champions League and Europa league trophy at the same time, the only one the European double. Sure Manure may have won more titles in the 2000s, but the manner in which Chelsea won ours and the dominance displayed has set records that have displaced the so called rich histories of these neandethalic era clubs like Pool and Arsenal.

What's most remarkable about this season's success is the transfer activity or lack thereof by Chelsea after an abysmal 10th place last year. Everyone of the big clubs outspent us by a mile even some of the smaller clubs outspent us. Yet Chelsea have set the EPL alight once again in an era where that type of dominance is almost unfathomable with the level of profit sharing and transfer kitty's almost all clubs now have due to the worldwide acclaim the EPL has garnered lately. Case in point is Leicester's title and quarter final Champions League showing. 30 wins in this era is nothing short of remarkable and yet you speak on Spuds?

That's also an escape route for next year when the Spud scum finish 8th and Arsenal finish 6th - hey the power has shifted again meanwhile you're both insignificant. Spuds have to be perhaps the most classless club in the country that gloat and make videos after a single derby win. The only thing that your guy Arsene can legitimately gloat about is dominating those bottlers, but it's not big feat they are the epitome of choking.

Look at their Champions League showing, they do nothing different than what Arsenal have done in the last decade except occupy the valuable position that a team with heart like Leicester or even Everton could get in the UEFA Champions League and ruin it o put it to complete waste.

Teams like Arsenal and Tottenham would lose the EPL Champions League places and the top four would turn to the top two because you've got two overrated crappy clubs with arrogant deluded fans that think they've achieved something when stringing together a few wins when it doesn't matter. When the heat is on and you need to get it done, you're nowhere to be seen and that's the case with both crappy clubs in North London the battle of the chokers.

Only difference is thanks to David Dein and GG Arsene can claim his past Arsenal sides won something 15 years ago, whereas Tottenham have been extinct when it comes to major honors for 50 years now. Yet everyone wants to talk about the Spud scum!

So you're dead wrong on saying there's a power shift. First of all there's no footballing power in London except SW6 at the bridge and especially North London where those clubs would shame the game with their choking tactics (see 10-2 Bayern and Spuds West Ham) the same West Ham that had their asses handed to them by defensively abysmal Pool. If you need any further Spud choking reference, see last years debacle vs Newcastle when all they had to play for was north London Pride and then their shambolic Champions League group stage performance. Even if we were to assume you speak on a power shift amongst the biggest chokers in the epl. I'd have to disagree.

Arsene has won trophies 15 years ago what have the Spud scum done? Even the FA Cup has been in the last 5 years won by Arsenal, what have Spuds won? Coming in second is better than winning a trophy? I don't think so. The only things Spuds did was qualify for Champs Lge which they were expected to do anyway. In fact they were expected to maybe win the EPL, which they've failed to do with the best squad they've had in ages. Where they could've turned heads like the Champs Lge they didn't, nor did they make the FA Cup or win the League Cup.

At the end of the day, even if Manure lose the Europa League final they had a more successful season than the Spuds who won nothing. Top four is not a trophy despite what your imbecilic manager has tried convincing you all these years, so why are you now pretending that it is some sort of achievement?

Challenging for the league is something if you do it once, but after the first time it's not success it's a failure. You may challenge once but the second time around come correct and win it. No one remembers challengers, they remember winners. As hard as it might be for you to admit, Arsenal have been winners of an FA Cup in the past decade, which Tottenham can't say they won.

All these years you presented a compelling case for the demise of Arsenal and indeed back to back FA Cups is a pitiful showing for a club of that stature and for the promises they've made about competing with the likes of Bayern Munich.

However, you've tried way too hard with this piece and have actually presented a case whereby you actually make Arsene look more successful than the truly abysmal specialist in failure that he is. Let's get shit straight when you put Spuds on par with Arsenal, essentially what you are doing is presenting a case for Arsene to stay. I don't know what kind of curse has afflicted that pitiful excuse of a franchise called the Spuds but seeing how their fans behave and the general classless behavior of their club in general it's just karma that they come up failures again. Next year in Wembley they're mid-table and half their stars will leave just like Bale and Modric left.

99.9% of the time you're bang on and 100% on point but this for the first time ever you are 99.9% completely wrong and have presented an extremely weak argument. You've contradicted all your arguments of years past that top 4 isn't a trophy that mediocrity has crippled Arsenal etc etc by praising Tottenham's mediocrity. They've done nothing this year absolutely nothing! Even Mourinhos Manure with their league cup are more successful. Compound the fact that you are praising the penultimate losers in a year that records were broken (30 wins never been achieved before) you offend the sport and league and this otherwise flawless and highly entertaining blog!!!

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AT

First of all, this blog is about Arsenal, therefore I'm far less likely to be interested in writing a blog piece about Chelsea, or any other club and their achievements, unless it directly relates to Arsenal. Congratulations to Chelsea and all that, but Spurs and Arsenal are massive rivals and their histories are inextricably linked.

You seem to completely miss the point of this article, which is to compare Arsenal and Tottenham - for the above-mentioned reasons, the power shift that has occurred, and analyse how both clubs will be affected financially by their current European and EPL standings.

As a reasonably mature adult, I'm not interested in referring to Tottenham as "Spud Scum" etc. I have friends and close family who support Spurs and I don't have any intention of degrading them by using such crass and classless terminology. You may not have moved beyond the playground, and I don't know what circles you socialise in, but in my world the football fans I discuss things with adopt a far more enlightened position.

The fact that success for Spurs has been particularly barren for the past 50 years only highlights the achievements of Pochettino, who has walked into the club and within two seasons turned them into genuine title contenders, mostly based on young and emerging players, with a budget and wage bill that is half that of its competitors. I'd be interested to know how you can define that as me putting a case for Wenger to stay?

If you can't see the value in Pochettino's performance, perhaps you can stretch your mind back to before Abramovic legged it to London and started throwing his corrupt money around. At that point, Chelsea were just like Spurs used to be up until a couple of years ago, a small fry London club forever in Arsenal's shadow.

May 16, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJohn terry

Good to get confirmation that John Terry is a classless twat from the man himself though. I also have Spurs-supporting relatives and I'm pleased for them and a bit of gloating at my expense is no problem.

The only blot on the horizon is Spurs playing at Wembley; they don't like it and they haven't done any better there than Arsenal did when we used it for CL games. I would not be surprised if the Spurs resurgence was halted until they return to the Lane.

Like many North London fans in the '60s, although I always supported Arsenal, I went to WHL often when the fixture list always alternated home games for Arsenal and Spurs. So watching Greaves, Blanchflower, Dave Mckay etc. was a regular treat, alongside watching Arsenal gradually overtake them, culminating in the Fairs Cup win in 1969. It was great in the '60s to see us gradually become a virtually unbeatable side and then win the double.

But Spurs are definitely on the up, and we are in for another two years of the slow, agonising death that is Anus Wonga. But, 5th place is like a trophy.

May 16, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterBill Robertson

Let's put everything into perspective here. Chelsea, before Mr Abramovic came along with his dirty money, were a sinking ship. Irrespective of the success of the past fourteen years, Chelsea will always be considered a team not only bankrolled by an individual who manipulated a system (and individuals) for the benefit of his own thirsty greed, but also a team built around a belief that money is the be all and end all of modern-day football. Yep, Chelsea remain as classless and clueless today as they were before RA came knocking at the door!!

May 16, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterZaheerAbbas

"Mostly based on young and emerging players, with a budget and wage bill that is half that of its competitors."

That's the AKB's mantra. We don't have oil money, dirty mob money etc. etc. and then you wonder why no one feels sorry for your lot when your owner sucks you dry with the highest season ticket prices.

Such a weak and defeatist attitude about Abramovich's money, weren't you all screaming spend some money to Wenger! Hypocrisy of the highest order!! In Abramovich you have a rich owner that generously spends on his club and gives the fans 14 years of joy and history. I can understand the jealousy as now Chelsea has overtaken United as the most hated club. We all know that has nothing to do with money but with our success.

Manchester City has highly outspent Chelsea I don't hear you complaining about that. Not to mention United, Real, Barcelona and any other European power. I didn't know they all used their academy players of which Chelsea has the biggest and richest academy nowadays.

It's OK for Real to buy success but when Chelsea does it uh oh everyone loses their shit. Maybe we should also be praising Sevilla and Zaragosa too, they spend a fraction of what Real and Barca do but we don't praise them do we? For you to throw unjustified and completely unfounded praise to Pochettino or the Spurs is no different than what AKBs have been doing for the past 10 years. Only difference is the duration and the fact that Arsenal won a few trophies while Spurs have won nothing!


"I'd be interested to know how you can define that as me putting a case for Wenger to ?"
stay"

Title contenders can be a relatively subjective phrase. Pochetino has won nothing that's the bottom line - title contenders, no one cares and no one remembers, either you win or you don't. You can go back 10 years and the same was said about Arsenal, stadium debt not simply splashing money - you're literally using the same drab excuses AKBs make to defend Wenger except in your case you somehow present the Spurs as something praise worthy when they've won absolutely nothing!

As far as the classless insults towards Spurs I'll take that on chin. You and the others that have commented are absolutely right! Of course I meant no insult to your Spurs-supporting family members but the culture at the club is something we can agree is nothing short of embarrassing and disgraceful. Their ground is dangerous to walk through you can get mugged and beat up they're extremely violent and abusive and that runs through the entire organization for the most part.

Watch one of your own Robbie for AFTV getting racially abused and chased down on the street escorted by cops. Before you jump to racism amongst fans and the Paris incident there's a huge difference it wasn't happening on Stamford Bridge ground whereas the racial abuse and intimidation was happening on the Spurs ground so that's the difference. Racist fans everywhere as well as racist captain that apologized and paid for his actions does that make him non racist today certainly not but on the clubs watch nor on their ground so incidents happened with LFC and CFC but there's a big difference between fans being publicly abused on club's grounds, which Tottenham as a club provided no security for etc.

Probably not every Spud Scum working at White Shite Lane is an ignorant moron that aids and abets racist abuse of opposition fans on their ground but there were none that stopped it. The club has since apologized only after Robbie made this public so good on them so perhaps once they actually address and rectify the physical abuse, intimidation and physical assaults of opposing fans on racial or any other grounds the club shall remain the Spud Scum that they are however their supporters some of them are decent human beings.

So apologies if it came off as though I was insulting.

Spud Scum fans. The fans aren't the problem the club is. And just cause some of the decent fans support a crappy organization that can't get their shit together doesn't mean the fans are scum not at all! Maybe they just enjoy the football and I'll admit they do play an exciting brand of football that has brought them 0 trophies but it is fun to watch.

There's another North London club that also used to play an exciting brand of football for a few years after they moved into their new stadium but again almost the same dismal results for them as well!

Be well guys!

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AT

I don't care where Chelsea's money comes from - just stating facts. Abramovic is (allegedly) a grubby criminal that fled Russia for spurious reasons and pumped a ton of cash into Chelsea. It's up to you whether you want to accept that as fact or otherwise, but you clearly feel insecure about it, hence your overstated defence.

Personally, I don't think Abramovic's wealth takes anything away from the job that, for example, Mourinho or Conte did there, how the players performed to win those trophies and whether they should be given due credit for it. Those managers worked with what they were given and beat off the competition, that's all that matters.

HOWEVER, only an idiot would ignore the fact that to attain success in the PL/CL, money is certainly a critical factor. Obviously it's going to be easier to attain success if you have the funds to buy/attract the best players and managers - that's just common sense.

I don't moan about funds as an Arsenal supporter as I feel Wenger has more than adequate funds to challenge for the PL and CL. Apart from the fact he's an egotistical fraud, unable to consistently motivate his players and a tactical imbecile - and that's why he fails, if it was purely down to money then if you have £100m to spend every year on players and a £200m wage bill like he does, you should be able to beat the majority of clubs with less resources and mount a title challenge. At that level, failure due to lack of funds is nothing but a tawdry excuse because it then becomes about consistency, not money.

However, Tottenham does not quite fit that financial category yet. That's why I believe Pochettino deserves credit for the job he is doing there - irrespective of whether he has won trophies or not. It is possible to do a very good job and earn respect and NOT win trophies. Some managers do a brilliant job saving teams from relegation - it's a very different skill set. From their point of view, that success is as much earned as winning a trophy and it probably makes the supporters just as happy, so how can you put a price on that?

If you have the intelligence to analyse a club's history, location, ambition and finances, without looking through the lens of bias and superficial fandom, you should be able to come to a common sense conclusion.

May 16, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJohn Terry

Fair enough and well said for the most part. Bang on, on the bias I do hate Spurs not all their fans but the entire club and organization which to me doesn't include some of their classy fans. I feel so dirty using classy and Spurs in the same sentence but I'm met a few classy Spurs fans.

Nevertheless it is a big stretch to compare a team fighting off relegation with a regular top 10 team like Everton or Spurs. I'd agree full-heartedly that Spurs and Pochetino did well last year and a few years back with Redknapp, Modric and Bale when they made the Champions League then as well. But as usual it amounted to nothing. They did sweet f%#* all in the league and Europe and if you look at their recent history and ownership the general consensus would be they'll be headed down the same path as some their stars will leave for greener pastures.

As for Mr Abramovich, all the speculation and slime thrown his way is truly pitiful. There is no conviction or any crime charged against him just cause one is rich doesn't make them a criminal. Additionally, even if he were a formerly convicted criminal which he isn't it still has nothing to do with football. It is a pathetic falsehood to inject in his fantastic management and ownership of this now great and dominant club. 10 managers in 14 years and now 14 trophies because of it.

There's a ruthlessly winning mentality that comes down from the top at Chelsea that I will agree with. Success trumps everything including loyalty at Chelsea, everything has a cost and sentimentality does bode well with success long-term. The type of ruthlessness he's displayed at Chelsea is the way I'm sure he's made his money, unless you have concrete evidence to prove otherwise then where I come from we call these scandalous accusations jealous hating.

You're a brilliant blogger and unlike me you use your words carefully and said 'allegedly' but then you ask me to accept allegations as facts?! And clearly you and many other jealous haters do care where Roman's money comes from because if you didn't you wouldn't mention since it has nothing to do with football and B) since it is all allegations. My defense is based on a universal principle of innocent until proven guilty whatever warm blooded human deserves regardless of his personal riches and success.

Again, as rival fans your banter is refreshing and natural, you must seek excuses for the unprecedented success and history your near rivals are building, but if you believe your own delusions and slight a man and owner that arguably is the most generous and successful in sports today you not only deny the obvious change that needs to take place at your clubs but you also deny the evolution of the sport. I guess that's why some of you wish for the Good Samaritan angel Usmanov to be your owner.

To achieve and sustain the type of success Mr Abramovich has, you must be ruthless, cunning, and calculating in all aspects of life. Moral high grounds, charity, loyalty, and other people's opinions including pundits take a back seat. The same pundits that used to cry foul at Roman's ruthless firing of managers are now praising him.

The success at Chelsea is by in large part caused by one man which is the owner and not in just injecting money but more so in his ruthless management of the club and his 0 tolerance for failure. Failure that has been embraced by some of our rivals all Tottenham is and has been is a mediocre top 10 club breaking into the top four for the third time in 10 years would only mean something if they did something with it their abysmal exit and showing in this years champions league simply shows they are penultimate bottlers, the collapse of last season is the norm for them not the exception I don't rate this team or manager so far as better than the one with Redknapp and Bale and you can compare their performances in Europe to understand why.

This team and manager have more potential but there's absolutely 0 progress from them this year in comparison to last year that's simply fact. They should've at least sown the seeds of a winning mentality and either won the league cup or gone into at least the quarter finals of the champions league add to that their shambolic display against West Ham go watch the highlights please that was nothing short of embarrassing. I couldn't disagree with you more AT and I think if you disagree the 3 undisputed facts of this year for Spurs collapse I state above make a compelling case for my argument whether you agree with it or not.

Here are a few links for you:

Incase it doesn't open on YouTube it's entitled:

Jamie Carragher on the Abramovich model

Pause on the club by club comparison and look at Arsenal with Tottenham, Tottenham have spent more than half what Arsenal have in net transfer spend and have signed more quality players and yet they only have one league to show for while Arsenal have had 5 trophies during the same period and if you don't want to go as far back as 2003 even since 2010 Arsenal have won more trophies on comparable spending so again I disagree completely. Arsenal is a shambolic club being run into the ground by an arrogant and tactical buffoon. There's no denying that but comparing them to the penultimate bottlers you actually make them look good. Go check the video.

https://youtu.be/lORV3OoxzbU

And here's another very telling and accurate analysis of Tottenham by ESPN they don't get everything right those guys but here they're right on. In case the link doesn't open here's the name of the video it's about 6mins long in YouTube. Keep in mind that even though West Ham hate Tottenham their results have been abysmal this month including an embarrassing drubbing handed to them by Liverpool right after the Tottenham game. This was Tottenham's first chance to bring the point gap to one point. And please after listening to the analysis go watch the highlight on footytube.

West Ham United vs Tottenham Hotspur 1-0 Full Post Match Analysis 06/05/2017

https://youtu.be/uijeHNCnIus

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AT

The chances of hoarding the sort of cash that Abramovic did in a country like Russia without being corrupt is about as likely as winning the lottery back to back. If you think a fraudulent oil billionaire with close to ties to Putin is going to get criminally convicted for anything then you're laughably naive. I understand why you would want to be an Abramovic denier, just like AKBs are Wenger deniers, and I'm not saying Abramovic is not a great owner of CFC.

I don't like Usmanov for exactly the same reasons and wouldn't want him running Arsenal. I even had reservations about previous Arsenal owner Danny Fiszman who worked in the equally contemptible diamond trade.

Spurs have made clear and obvious progress from last season. The club finished with 70 points and this season they already have 80. If they win their two remaining games, 86 is an excellent points total that a lot of clubs in the past have won the PL with, so the fans should be delighted with the progress the club is making.

Please don't include winning the FA Cup as an achievement. The last time Arsenal won it they faced Reading in the SF and relegation-bound Aston Villa in the final. The previous year it was Wigan in the SF and Hull in the final. If Wenger DIDN'T win it he should be fucking shot. Even this season he's only had to face Preston, Southampton (reserves), Sutton Utd and Lincoln to get to the SL lol

With lucky draws you can probably get away with only having to beat one half-decent team to get to the final, and most teams are putting out shadow sides these days, even championship and league one sides don't always take it seriously. So while the trophy is a great day out for fans, it means jack shit in terms of progress, consistency or quality and is not a barometer of anything.

All these idiot Arsenal fans crowing that the players suddenly had a winning mentality because they beat Hull and Aston Villa in the finals - although they even needed extra time to beat Hull lol. I, of course, knew it didn't mean shit and Wenger wouldn't challenge for anything of importance in subsequent seasons.

May 17, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJohn terry

If Liverpool fuck it up against Middlesbrough, can we assume God is a Gooner? Did anyone else notice Sanchez blanking Giroud after scoring last nigh? Wenger, of course, is clueless to all these things. For the greater good of AFC, Liverpool must take 4th place!

May 17, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterZaheerAbbas

I just really hope Liverpool bottle it! That way Arsene can sign on for 2 more years!! There's only one Arsene Wenger and even Crystal Palace fans sang his name in joy!!! I will be at the FA Cup final singing it loud as well.

I don't have any retort to all the points you've made cause they're all factual and you're absolutely right on the probable suspicions on Abramovich. If I were a betting man, I'd place my money on the seemingly obvious conclusion you've made. It's also true about the 86 points most teams would win the league with that total which makes it that much sweeter that the Spurs lost hahaha. God I hate them!

My personal disdain and hatred aside I really think that they'll get 86 points but that's only cause now the pressure is off. The only point I still argue and the point the ESPN video succinctly makes is that Tottenham with respects to winning actual trophies, getting over the line, and playing with pressure they've shown no progress at all. Should a team that talented be out at the group stage in the Champs Lge and then after in Europa too? In the cup competitions, shouldn't they have lifted one trophy at least?

Talent and hunger can only get you so far if you don't have that ruthless winning mentality that can get your over the line or you don't have the experienced leader or leaders that have been there before, then it's utterly hopeless. My personal bias aside, that's honestly what I see from Tottenham - a supremely talented team with lots of hunger and desire but 0 experience getting over the line, and when you lack the balls to close all your talent and efforts are in vain.

They're penultimate losers and I can see that coming from the top Daniel Levy, his ugly mug screams ultimate loser. What'd they do with the money they got for Modric and Bale? They went right back to Thursday night football and I assure you they'll be back there soon.

Unless they buy that experienced and proven winner and not someone like Cech who's passed his prime but a proven winner in his prime like a Fabregas, if I were Tottenham I'd take Vardy. Kane is an overrated pile of crap, go back and watch the euros he showed his true colours playing for England.

Tottenham lack the composed experienced winning mentality. That's why Drogba coming back was so important during the title run in 2 years ago and Terry being in for this one was so vital to Cahill's development. You got the John Obi Mikels that have schooled the Matics, Willians, and Hazards. Cech also did this for Courtois and now you've got a new core still with proven winners like Champions Lge winners like David Luiz and Cahill and Europa lge winners like Moses and Azpilucueta they've instilled this winning mentality throughout the team to the Alonso's to the new blood, winning a league is very different from winning a cup competition.

The semi-final ruthless mauling of Tottenham in the business end of the season showed this clearly, that was the most below average showing I've seen from a team that's scored 4 goals in a semi final, we were poor and I mean piss poor and still won 4-2 because when it mattered most we were ruthlessly efficient. The Spurs are the exact opposite. they probed and prodded pointlessly and fell asleep at the back 4 times that's all it took for our 2nd string to put them away. That was their statement game and they've never bossed in the midfield the way they did in that game and yet they were still miles away. In this respect they're same as Arsenal, except Arsenal additionally lacks both the talent and hunger.

Best sports blog bar none AT. So I'll do you a big favour since I'll be first row at Wembley if I get close enough to Wenger I'll sing to him "He wants you to stay, he wants you to stayyyyyy, Arsenal Truth he wants you to stay!"

You refused my offer to be a true and warm blooded Blue, I guess you're allergic to trophies so clearly you must love Arsene and want him to stay!

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AT

It's boring enough writing about Arsenal without going any deeper than I have done into the travails of Tottenham or Chelsea. Enjoy Wembley, hope you win.

May 18, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJohn terry

If Wenger does leave, I wonder if AKBs will be as patient with the new manager?

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AT

Depends if Wenger had any influence in their role at the club.

May 18, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterChris J

AT, what do you think would happen if in his next press conference, one of the reporters points out to Twatene that Tony Adams is quoted as saying "Arsene couldn't coach his way out of a paper bag." ?

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AT

"Well errrrr, I believe that he is little bit unhappy that I did not take him on. Pffffffffff, you have to give absolutely everything. Why you look at me?"

May 19, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterWrinkly Voyeur

As vital as it is that Wenger MUST go, our problems will not be at an end unless there are wholesale changes in the mind set, attitudes (or even personnel) at Owner and Board of Director level.

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AT

Not entirely sure that's true. If Guardiola, Klopp, Conte, Allegri or a dozen other top managers had been given £300m to spend over three years do you think Arsenal would be where they are now? Had the club put in a PL or CL challenge, nobody would be saying diddly squat about the board.

The attacks on Kroenke are justified because he refuses to sack Wenger, other than that I don't see what he's doing wrong. He has supported the manager's every financial and logistical request.

If the club was winning big trophies, people would say Kroenke is fantastic; he doesn't interfere like other owners, supports the manager fully and lets him get on with his job. When it's the opposite, Kroenke is a clueless jerk that doesn't care about the club. A lot of that criticism is coming from Wenger lovers trying to take the heat off him and shift the blame.

Does Kroenke give a shit? Probably not as much as you'd want from an owner, and that's far from ideal, but he is investing and supporting the manager - if he wasn't, that would be a much bigger concern. Kroenke has also continued to support Wenger financially despite him making a net loss of £215m in the transfer market over the past three seasons.

That does not indicate an owner looking to screw every penny he possibly can out of the club. Of course, that's not to say he isn't in it for profit, but then most of them are.

May 19, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterDB10

AT, let's play a fantasy role playing game where Wenger does leave this summer, Trump has a heart attack and John Terry finds a pastime that doesn't involve misreading the title of a post on Arsenal Truth leading him to post a (largely irrelevant) volume of full-length novels in response.

Who is available as a replacement? Assuming we're in the Europa League, what high profile manager would want the job? And what players do you think it would be realistic to target to improve our laughably overpaid squad?

And, in response to your article, Spurs have a better manager and better team so there has been a power shift as those are the two things that count. I don't see them losing the manager or any players this summer either so Arsenal will need a new manager to rebuild to get near them.

Another well-articulated post AT.

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AT

I prefer not to speculate on managerial replacements. There are some obvious ones of course (Allegri/Simeone/Ancelotti/Jardim/Koeman) but I don't know every manager in world football, how they're performing or their contract status/circumstances.

The same goes for players really. We can all pick out names, but so much depends on whether they would fit into a particular tactical system and I don't have a global scouting network to tell me who is available and at what price, so naming names is all rather superficial.

What I do know is that Arsenal are in some trouble due to the Premier League's short-term control costs. It appears the club have already purchased Sead Kolasinac from Schalke, and if they're forced to give £250-300k contracts to Ozil and Sanchez to secure their last big contracts, this is going to have a massive impact on who else Arsenal can realistically bring in without breaking the current salary cap rules. Those rules disallow PL clubs from raising salaries above £7m pa, even taking into account profit from commercial revenues, which in Arsenal's case would only be an additional £4m.

Why nobody in the blogosphere or media has latched on to these circumstances is bemusing to say the least. But then most of them don't know fuck all about anything.

I would imagine a lot, and I mean a lot of players would have to leave in order to accommodate Ozil and Sanchez' salary demands. A lot will leave anyway (Debuchy, Gibbs, Ospina, Perez, Jenkinson, Sanogo and Campbell), which will help, but I suspect Wilshere and Oxlade Chamberlain will have to be let go of as well if the club is going to keep Ozil and Sanchez and have room for the addition of a couple of genuine top-class players this summer.

On the other hand, if Ozil and Sanchez decide to leave, Arsenal are in deep trouble as all the above players could conceivably exit as well, leaving the club with tons of cash and plenty of wage bill maneuverability, but it would be a very unattractive prospect for incoming players - a situation compounded by the possibility of non-CL football.

So as you see, if Ozil and Sanchez stay, the situation is relative stasis - especially under Wenger. If they leave, Arsenal look like a mid-table club to me. And no incoming manager is going to turn the detritus that's left around very quickly.

Interesting times, but with no CL football - desperate times. And I think there's a very real chance that if Arsenal don't make CL and Sanchez and Ozil go, Wenger will jump ship, because trying to turn things around will be a nightmare for anyone, but especially a certain individual that is already witnessing protests and a split fan base.

@ AT don't forget the squad rules on home grown players (minimum of 8). We could have to replace Wilshere, Gibbs, Ox and Jenkinson, that's four players, and we know how expensive English players are. Personally, I think we MUST keep Alexis even if we have to sacrifice Özil to do it.

Sanogo, Debuchy, Mertesacker and Campbell should be sold - those 4 should free up at least 175k/week (not sure how much Campbell or Sanogo are on) don't know if we're paying Szczesny's wages while he is on loan. If not, that's down to £110k plus whatever Kolasinac will be on (if he has signed) will also have to be taken off.

Then there is the possible increase in Wenger's wages and the increase wages of all the players who's contracts run out in 2017 or 2018.

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AT

Wenger's wages won't count. Only the player wage bill has to meet salary cap rules, nothing outside of that.

May 21, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterChris J

John Terry, you're typical of all modern day Chelsea fans. Arrogant, ignorant, deluded and consumed with thinking that you're a popular lot. I'm a Goone, but I hate Chelsea more than any other team.

Tottenham have been a breath of fresh air these past two years and that's coming from an Arsenal fan!! Ok, they didn't win anything, but in footballing terms, they played you off the park in all three games this season!

Chelsea win trophies because of money. Take RM away from the equation and you would have been left with nothing!!!!!!!!!

May 21, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterZaheerAbbas

AT

Beyond any doubt you have shown perspicaciousness over the years on this blog.

But on this occasion, you may have underestimated DB10's point that the problems begin with the owner. I agree with DB that the owner's complacency and the appalling corporate governance structure at the club are profound - perhaps insurmountable - barriers to success.

Personally I think Stan should sack Wenger, and then promptly sack himself.

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AT

In what way is the current corporate governance structure an impediment to success if the manager is provided with the finances and infrastructure to succeed?

May 21, 2017 | Unregistered Commentermarinersmullet

Wenger's appaling behaviour over these past weeks has only added to his failing reputation. Holding back on communicating HIS decision shows us all that he does not have the good of the club at heart. Sanchez will go (don't give a toss about Ozil!) unless a dynamic manager can come in and convince him otherwise. As the season comes to an end, I hope and prey that Wenger's reign is finally over.

May 21, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterZaheerAbbas

AT, in the sense that there are no other characterful football men at the club, leaving the Dear Leader to attempt to do everything himself. Badly.

I accept your point that he's had the finances to succeed but I'm not sure the infrastructure is in place. A decent corp gov structure (to include a division of powers) might mitigate the owner's complacency, but the fundamental problem is the latter imo, which perhaps I should have made clearer in my earlier post.

I fully accept Wenger has helped engineer this sub-optimal situation, in pursuit of his own narrow interests. But it should never have come to this.

For me, in life and in football, the buck stops at the very top.

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AT

What's wrong with the infrastructure? You tell me. It's easy to say the infrastructure is not in place, but it doesn't mean anything unless you can tell me what's wrong with it. Like I said, if Wenger was performing how he should with the funds available, nobody would complain about Kroenke or the infrastructure of the club.

May 21, 2017 | Unregistered Commentermarinersmullet

Well that's it, 5th place no CL and unless a miracle happens no FACup. Naturally, AKB's will say give him until after the summer transfer window.

May 21, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterChris J

I would say Wenger's tactical nouse has been well and truly exposed by now, so a deeper coaching structure is one element where the infrastructure appears to be lacking.

Moreover, if not a full-on scouting network refresh, he surely needs assistance in negotiating contracts. As you have pointed out, he massively overpays in respect of wages, which is hindering progress.

Finally, he might benefit from a strong chief executive (in the absence of the owner) who he respects and who has a real interest in on-pitch success.

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AT

Like most owners, I doubt Kroenke has a clue about tactical systems or scouting networks. He delegates that to the board. You can change the scouting network, but if Wenger is dithering over players what does it matter?

Gazidis is probably trying to implement change, but Wenger is resistant to it. We will no doubt learn more over the coming months regarding the power structure and who is pushing for change, if anyone. But, ultimately, if Wenger stays then they're all incompetent.

May 21, 2017 | Unregistered Commentermarinersmullet

I guess for me it's the owner's failure to establish a competent board to patch up the aforementioned glaring deficiencies that makes him a profound barrier to success, which was DB10's original point. Further, Wenger should not be allowed to dither, which is the owner's/board's responsibility to enforce.

Anyway, I certainly agree with your last point, and have enjoyed the debate. I'm off to secure my Emirates Cup tickets.

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AT

They'll be half-price this year.

May 21, 2017 | Unregistered Commentermarinersmullet

So Wenger is now blaming a bad environment and uncertainty over his own future for our failures; both of these are his fault. He also claims he's turned down every club in the world.

May 22, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterChris J

"In what way is the current corporate governance structure an impediment to success if the manager is provided with the finances and infrastructure to succeed?"

In their eyes he is succeeding, football success is secondary for them. As long as the money rolls in they're happy.

This is the issue I have with the board, they supply him with everything he needs apart from the one thing he needs the most and that's a massive kick up the arse. He has n oone above him telling him they expect better. Instead we have a manager in charge who can decide his own fate, someone who never has to fear losing his job no matter how poor we are - this is the root of the problems at this club and that has been enabled by the board.

This wouldn't happen at any other club. Can imagine Abramovic handing a manager 300m over three seasons and keeping him on if they played like we have? Or at Utd? No chance.

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AT

Precisely, that's where my criticism of Kroenke lies. But Wenger has been failing 10 out of the 10 years Kroenke has been there, so why are supporters only complaining about him now? Especially as he has provided more investment to Wenger in the last three years than ever before.

It's a proxy protest. They want Wenger out but can't bring themselves to say it, so lay the blame at Kroenke's door instead.

May 23, 2017 | Unregistered Commenterhenry8

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