I shared the feelings of optimism tempered by pessimistic thoughts described in Mike McDonald`s excellent article and unfortunately, the pessimism has come to the fore. We need to beat Chelsea now (provided we beat Valencia ) to get into the Championship League and in present form Chelsea must be favourites because while Arsenal have stagnated, Chelsea are accustomed to winning trophies.
I don`t go as far as to say that 6 players from either of Everton, Leicester or Watford would get into our squad, because they are relying on sheer endeavour to obtain results. Guardiola says there are no easy games in the Premiership even players who are in the bottom of the league can run, they can fight and they can defend so I would argue that those sort of teams above are slightly better than the rest of the mid-fielders at doing those things, but they need more than that to be in the top 4. We have slightly more skills than them but we are out – fought and we are bettered for effort and for method because they all have an easily identified plan of battle which they stick to. That has proved to be our undoing time after time and I think that the constant changes in tactics and players is counter-productive.
Ozil is a luxury player who fitted well into a team with Sanchez, Cazorla, Ramsey, Wilshire, and Giroud, because they were runners, dribblers, passers or scorers and he knew where they would be to receive his passes. They have not been replaced by better or equal players and we don`t have anyone other than Lacazette who has the same impact. Aubameyang is a luxury player who is a scorer rather than a provider like Ozil but they both rely on hard workers with skill to bring the best out of them. That is why Aubameyang looks as if he cant be bothered at times and Ozil can`t get into the game because he has no one in the team who plays at his level and understands his game. He has no one to form a pair with. Ramsey is the last of that caliber of player.
Like you, I believe that Emery has to have this season to get used to the club and the players at his disposal. I have no doubt that he has his own short list of new acquisitions, but we are not Man Utd, Chelsea or Man City. We don`t have an owner who will invest big money to produce results. We no longer shop in Harrods. At best we stretch to Waitrose, so we are not regarded as a top line club. With Kroenke at the helm, AFC will soon be a Tesco Shopper while Leicester will pass us and possibly Everton. If we are not careful ,we are destined for Lidl.
Emery would have to be a magician to produce players like our past heroes Henry, Adams, Berkamp, Pires, Viera etc. on the budget Kronke allows him. I ask you, what would £40m by you now?
I would urge those fans who are already wishing Emery out, to think for a minute; With the squad we have now which is grossly unbalanced, and with our monetary restrictions, what top class manager would want to come here? The fact is that unless a new Billionaire buyer emerges AFC is descending into the group of mid – table clubs which those mentioned above belong to.
I hope the fans don`t desert the club, but I`m afraid that we shall all have to re-align our expectations of what we expect to achieve and where we fit in the top Level of Clubs. Mr. Kroenke needs to consider that if the `Super League` ever emerges, Arsenal will not be considered to be good enough or big enough to fature in it. That would be a disaster for his investment.
A sophisticated, articulate Arsenal Man of Mystery. Aged 70 and a bit.