It has often been said that the most inspired blog posts come from pain or anger. Well, this one is truly inspired and it comes from blinding rage. Now, my anger is in two parts; the first is directed at Arsené Wenger and Arsenal FC and the second part is directed at myself for clinging back to Arsenal after glimpsing a trophy, the first in 9 painful years. It is a pity it had to take me a defeat at the hands of our, sorry, their eternal foes to see the picture clearly but thankfully, the scales have finally dropped from my eyes and can see clearly. The constant humiliation against Manchester United has seemed everlasting for many years past and this one was proving to be no different.
Earlier this year, I renounced this bloody club after a 6-0 thumping, excuse me, whiplashing against Chelsea but then again, after they managed to scrap up a 3-2 win against Hull City in the FA cup final, I saw a bit of hope and started to journey back. Again, a 2-0 win over Manchester City in the Community Shield match made me believe Arsenal was ready to take on anybody this season. Looking back on that period, I realised I had once again spurned God’s grace and gone back to the path of folly. The woes of Arsenal kept lurking in the shadows laughing and during the transfer window, they finally showed their true colours and I realised it was nobody but the man Arsené Wenger himself. Instead of fortifying his team with players that could make a difference, he only got a handful of average players and Alexis Sanchez. The rumours of Arsenal being linked to quality players were only rumours and on transfer deadline day when his fellow managers were making important transfers, he was wiling away time at a charity match and Arsenal ended up with Welbeck. In 1996, a man was hired and he proved to be a maestro. 9 years later, as the last black hair on his head started dying, that maestro was lost and all that was left was a shadow of a man a calamity set to happen.
Arsenal’s problem has never been the lack of good players. Great and awesome players have played for and passed through the team. An unending list of good standard players can be given if a list is required. Then, if players be not the problem, it is then true that the manager is the problem, although at this point in the Premiership history, I am just playing Captain Obvious here. Every single player that has showed promise in the team, Wenger has sold. The list is unending here. I would have given anything for Fabregas, Van Persie, Nasri or even, Alex Song not to have left. At a point, it looked it was a conspiracy to sell any player that showed promise over an extended period of time and ultimately, bring the club to ruin with Wenger and Ivan Gazidis smiling happily to the bank. And when Wenger does not sell the promising players, he finds another way to break hearts with his questionable tactics. Decisions which would make you question the sanity of this man and when his tactics fail, he still does the same thing over and over again. Insanity has now been described as doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. Wenger is a stubborn, headstrong French man with a stupid pride and if that’s what it means to be French, then fuck the French, pardon my French.
Now, for countless seasons past, Arsenal has always fallen to Manchester United, regardless of how well they play. There has only been one instance where they managed to draw blood and win. At first, I attributed it to the wiliness and coy of Sir Alex Ferguson but when even David Moyes could do it, I realised the problem was with Arsenal, not taking away the brilliance of Manchester United. The worst defeat still remains the 8-2 one. I could not even bear to look at my screen when the sixth goal went in. At some point, I came to the conclusion that Arsenal could never beat Manchester United, no matter what happened. It was as sure as the sky is blue.
After Arsenal’s last 3 matches, it was clear there was a defensive problem. A clearly slow Callum Chambers was moved to the position of a right fullback while Nacho Monreal who was never good at his natural position as a left fullback was now playing the role of a central back, a role which he was not familiar with. After the Swansea match, Arsenal fans cried out in clear voices that these players were not suited for those positions and they were costing us terribly in the defence. A fast and pacy Hector Bellerin, a natural right fullback could be played to counter the speed of the opposing team’s wingers while Callum Chambers could return to the center back position, a role he seemed quite adept in playing. But cries like this only fall on deaf ears; Arsené Wenger, with the blessing of the Arsenal board, decides to position his players as it seems pleasurable to him. Earlier this season, the underperformances of Ozil on the wing and Wenger’s staunch refusal to change his position were clear signs the manager was a mad man. Not even when Ozil’s most brilliant performance this season came from his natural position as a central attacking midfielder was that enough to persuade Wenger.
As I saw the line-up against Manchester United and saw Wenger has still remained stubborn, I went to sleep. It was clear this match was done and dusted even before the kick-off. It was no surprise when I woke up to a 1-2 Arsenal defeat. An own-goal from Kieran Gibbs and captain, Wayne Rooney had sealed the deal with only a consolation from a Olivier Giroud goal. Earlier on within the past 2 weeks, there was news that important Manchester United players were injured and would not play in the match. One Arsenal fan said it was a sign, that the god of soccer was finally ready to gift the Arsenal fans a victory they had so craved for. As I hear the cries of Manchester fans shouting, “Who is Wenger?! Who is Sanchez?!”, I said “Oh Arsenal, where is your god now?!”, asking no one in particular.