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A Wenger Ponderland
Arsene Must Deal With Another Failure
Posted Apr 28, 2011 by Shaun Edwards
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Having spent most of the season criticising Arsenal and Arsene Wenger and observing how their lack of real bite would inevitably end up affecting the amount of trophies that they’d end up with, you’d expect me to be laughing away following the loss at Bolton that effectively ends their title hopes.
Well, you’d pretty much be right.
The fact that Wenger came out and apologised for the decline of a season that promised so much, and said that he was ultimately responsible should not detract from the boss having to actually face the consequences. Wenger reminds me of a school kid who comes out and confesses to a crime only once everyone already knows it was him.
It will be tempting for Arsenal fans to rally round the man – after all, he brought the Gunners their first Premier League trophy, and also supervised the ‘unbeatables’ season. However, this will now be the sixth year in succession that he has failed in his bid to bring trophies home, and this is his own fault.
Whatever Wenger’s reputation as a manager who can spot young talent may be (and there is little doubt that the likes of Viera and Anelka displayed his ability in this area) he continues to glaringly overlook the fact that in those great Arsenal sides of seven or so years ago, he had made solid (and substantial) investments in the transfer market. Two men widely considered to be the two best players in Arsenal history – Dennis Bergkamp and Thierry Henry – cost £7 million and £11 million respectively. Bear in mind that both men were bought before the new millennium – the equivalent modern investment would be around £20 million each. And yet in pre-season, Wenger was apparently unwilling to spend an additional £1 million to land Mark Schwarzer – a far more reliable goalkeeper than any of the ones he currently possesses.
The fact that Arsenal will end this season with no trophies is solely down to the stubbornness of their manager, who remains prepared to let Arsenal’s best players go, without spending any money to replace them. When Cesc Fabregas departs in the summer, you can expect Wenger to replace him with a young player who costs virtually nothing. And you can expect Arsenal to end up potless by the end of next season, too.