Today I would like to welcome back to 1ND2OU my good friend Gary Lawrence, better known to many as @garythegooner56. Last time he was on here he was writing about his memorable night at White Hart Lane when we won the league there the first time in 1971. I hope you will know therefore that as a match goer for over 50 years his views are considered and worth reading……
Last night emotions were running high after another demoralising defeat & I wanted to sleep on it before talking further.
Sunday night twitter was in meltdown a madhouse with a lot of irate Gooners calling for Wenger’s head. I even saw a petition calling for his dismissal.
More & more fans are losing faith in our manager. With people abusing & calling him all sorts. If you want him gone fair enough but he doesn’t deserve such a lack of respect.
Watching his post match interview it was sad to see how deflated & dejected he looked. While I don’t think for one minute Stan & co will sack him he may well decide enough is enough & walk away at the end of the season
I for one will be deeply saddened as this is the man that won 2 doubles 3 titles 4 FA Cups & was a Thierry one on one away from winning the Champions League with 10 men. All that time playing unforgettable breathtaking football.
The call to bring Wenger down is snowballing & the media would love to have a nice juicy story of Wenger leaving The Arsenal. They build them up then knock them down.
Arsene Wenger reminds me of a once great fighter who’s taken too many punches or a brilliant songwriter whose talent to write smash hit records has run dry. But if he is to leave us I want him to land one more knockout punch or write one more hit single & go out in style by winning the FA Cup in May.
Of course Wenger has made a lot of mistakes both on & off the field that cannot be denied. But I believe the problems at The Arsenal go far deeper than Wenger losing his Midas touch.
The root of our problems started a long time ago & was a caused by the board of directors making some calamitous errors. The decision to build the new stadium was necessary & Danny Fiszman & Ken Friar deserve great credit for delivering a fantastic state of the art stadium on time & at the budgeted price.
David Dein knew the move would impact on the money we’d have to spend on the squad & made a fatal error by courting Silent Stan behind the rest of the Board’s back. He paid the price by being banished from the club
Whatever you may think of Dein he was a brilliant double act with Arsene Wenger was superb at his job & the board made another terrible error by letting personal feelings get in the way of what was best for the club.
David Dein then got into bed with Alisher Usmanov by selling him his shares in the club. This led to another damaging move by the club when Fiszman out of spite in my opinion got Peter Hillwood & co to follow his lead & sell all their shares to Silent Stan at a massive profit thanks in no small part to Wenger’s success.
I feel they sold the club down the river by selling out to the wrong man. Instead of Kroenke putting money in to strengthen the squad or failing that having a Rights Issue to raise the money he did neither & allowed the club to be run on a shoestring budget & in the process we lost several star players & struggled to compete with Chelsea, Man Utd & Man City.
To this day Stan hasn’t spent a penny of his vast wealth to help the club through a difficult phase of its history. He & his son Josh have zero interest in Arsenal & football other than how much the club is worth.
Usmanov on the contrary is genuinely a football fan who comes to the Emirates most of the time & would never have left Wenger strapped for cash & shorn of his star players & significantly would have reinstated Wenger’s right hand man David Dein.
There was still hope that Usmanov would win his battle for control with Kroenke until PHW & the Board convinced Lady Nina Bracewell-Smith to sell her shares to Stan (despite her being dumped from the board) & hand him the controlling interest.
She has admitted on twitter she made a mistake selling to Kroenke & now we have to suffer the consequences of her actions.
By removing Dein the Directors have handed far too much power to Wenger allowing him to not only identify transfer targets which is how it should be but also to say how much the player’s transfer fee should be & what the players wages are set at.
The club & Wenger made a complete mess of the last four transfer windows & there is a strong possibility if Wenger does go they’ll appoint the wrong replacement going by their previous mistakes.
If Arsene Wenger at the end of the season decides enough is enough & calls time on his marathon reign I for one would like to thank him from the bottom of my heart not only for the wonderful players & great sides but also for the monumental task of keeping the club in the Champions League for years with no real money in order to service the stadium debt despite Stan Kroenke standing by & giving him no support whatsoever when he needed it most.
Thanks Gary. Enough said as I know that was hard for you to write but I am sure you reflect the views of many.