Arsenal will always be soft as long as Arsene Wenger is manager

by Charlie Coffey

Tuesday, October 26th, 2010

Cesc Fabregas’s claim that “Even if they had 15 (players) and we had 11 we would still go and win” regarding Arsenal’s 3-0 win at Manchester City is highly unlikely. Instead the number 14 is more relevant. This was only Arsenal’s first win in 14 matches over the other teams that make up the remodelled big four, and the early sending off of Dedryck Boyata means that as a statement of intent it was somewhat hollow. The talk of Arsenal taking on a more ruthless streak will only be vindicated if they can win regularly against top sides with eleven men, and until that time they will still be also-rans capable of demolishing lesser teams but unable to impose themselves on the title race.

Next year will be the same story. Cesc Fabregas will leave, and Arsene Wenger will say his young replacement needs time to mature. As plausible as it is not to sign proven players so that young talent can develop, Arsenal fans must ask themselves if they are content to be a side that always seems to be improving without ever quite making it. They are becoming everybody’s favourite second team in that they are great to watch but never really a serious threat. While Wenger remains at Arsenal the club will be forever stuck in the same Groundhog Day scenario without ever getting the girl.

Did anyone take Arsenal’s title challenge seriously last season? Did anyone think they could beat Barcelona? No, we all knew they would fizzle out and that some outside factor would be to blame, that Arsenal would point to next season again, as they always do. For this reason the very top players will feel unfulfilled at the club, and it is likely that if Jack Wilshire does mature to be the player everyone thinks he can be he will have to move if his is to be remembered as a winner, and not just a decent footballer that stayed at Arsenal to repay the loyalty Wenger showed in him as Henry did for so long.

The fact is that Wenger’s signings reflect himself: intelligent but spineless; good at talking themselves up but ungracious in inevitable defeat. The admittedly awesome untouchables side were built on a defensive backbone that was in place when Wenger arrived, that was artificially strengthened by the petulant arrogance of Patrick Vieira and Emmanuel Petit, and that has now crumbled. Thomas Vermaelen may be called the ‘Verminator’ and Sebastien Squillaci may have a reputation as a hard man, but whether their partnership toughens up Arsenal’s soft centre remains to be seen.

The success of new signing Marouane Chamakh and the recent improvement of Lucasz Fabianski, Samir Nasri and Alex Song are encouraging, but whatever progress made on an individual basis, Arsenal as a team do not seem capable of attaining the mental fibre to match the very best, and while the team Is run by Arsene Wenger, a man whose named William Gallas as club captain there is every chance that this trait will continue to undermine Arsenal’s pursuit of major honours.

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  • okayplayer

    lol! cry baby article with the usual drivel.

    Arsenal the Champions!!!

  • RedandDread

    You plonker! Get yur facts right mate-what Cesc said was that even if Citeh had 15 men and Arsenal 11, Arsenal would still be going for a win. This was obviously pertaining to the fact that Citeh were down to 10 men. And that is true-Sunderland this season for example and many other situations (Bolton away a few years ago-down to 10 men and 2-0 down and we won 3-2).

    The haters’ argument is either, we can beat the top clubs but cannot beat the dross , now it’s we can beat the dross but cannot beat the tops clubs. Stop writing shite for the sake of writing something.

  • GoonerC

    “If Jack Wilshire does mature to be the player everyone thinks he can be he will have to move if his is to be remembered as a winner, and not just a decent footballer that stayed at Arsenal to repay the loyalty Wenger showed in him as Henry did for so long” – are you suggesting that Henry wont be remembered as a winner? He won the league twice and FA cup three times at Arsenal.

  • Hey you

    Shut your pie hole you noob of a blogger.

  • Tim

    I think Chelsea and United took our title challenge serious last season for sure, how many points did we make up?

    In the words of a famous permhead, I would love it if we beat ’em, love it! They’ve still gotta come to us!

    I’d also lay £500 that City won’t lose 3-0 at home again for a while, 11 men or not, it was a great performance all-round.

    Title contenders? As cesc says, judge us in may

  • easty

    untouchables were a complete wenger side sorry to burst your bubble but nothing to do with the adams era apart from bergkamp


    arguably wengers best side at the time not much from the side you have stated the backbone in place when he arrived, if you do correct research that would of been the 98 double winning side

  • Chief Gooner

    what a load of crap! arsenal have shown this year they’re not afriad to mixt it physically. did de jong or kompany manage to bully any of the arsenal players. no!. they tried on a few but arsenal gave it right back

  • Jordan Gooner

    I believe your article is complete garbage, have you ever been to a football match. The Arsenal manager is by far the best manager in the UK and possibly the world. Not only has established of a very exciting and attractive team he has also built the best stadium the best training facilities and for fans enjoyment Arsenal are a joy to watch.Henry won loads of trophies with the Arsenal. And it is only a matter of time whether it’s this year or next year will win many more trophies, you failed to mention that in many of the matches against the other top four sides we have been decimated by injuries, also most supporters accepted that the team was developing this was being undertaken without going to large debt as is now the problem with Manchester United and Liverpool. In the long-term picture will be very rosy for Arsenal and is only a matter of time before lots of trophies come our way. It appears everyone is happy with Arsenal who is connected to to the club and is a supporter and it’s only people like yourself, who do not seem to understand football that criticise for criticism sake.

  • Don

    Fucking moron.

  • Tan singapore

    The worst thing that has happened to me today is to stumble upon your blog. What a load of rubbish you have jsut written there!! Quick go find a hole and stuff you dick in it will ya?? duhhhhh!

  • Lettraggad

    If i had a blog I figure Id try to contribute with something different to what the retard (sky) media and the xenophobic british tabloids come up with. Guess we are different in that way. weve had a poor start by our accounts but we are second in the league and have more or less progressed from our Chamipons league group. We are (yes here comes the excuse) we are hit with massive injurys .. this time to our spine so weve arguably been playing the best bart of our games with 5 starters missing. Now THAT is were things have changed the quality off the stand ins and the competition in the squad has vastly improved. we may not be there yet i personally think Chelseas squad is the strongest by far .. but I place ours ahead of United. But hey you got the hits you wanted .. so keep up the good wo.. I mean keep on repeating what other media does , makes things easier for you I guess.

  • Ola

    You are a muppet, not a well thought out article, you are one of them, Arsenal haters, go and support either spuds or chelski and go to blases. Arsenal will win the league and you may have to emigrate to Afganistan or Iran.

  • lol.

    hahahaa wow wat a dumbass vieira petit lehmann soft what a dumb idiot

  • James

    Seems like a rotten Spud to me……either that or a hapless and unhappy Liverpool fan. Arsenal are getting stronger you only have to compare our performances against ‘tough’ teams like Blackburn and arguably Chelsea (despite the loss).

    Im not as blinkered as some fans and I can see through the miasma of silly comments sometimes made by our players, but this has to be the least positive article I have read for some time.

    ‘you havent got anything nice to say? Dont say it.’

    Quite sad really!

  • jake

    Hey look. It’s another one of those hit whoring bloggers who think people actually care about his retarded opinions. Why do you have your ugly face plastered all over this site? I bet you’re the type who thinks about yourself while wanking. Go fuck yourself while you are at it.

  • none retarded person

    As you can see from my name i’m the opposite of you.

    First of all, Fabregas said If city had 15 men and we had 11 we would still go out AND TRY FOR THE WIN as usual. not we WOULD win.

    “The talk of Arsenal taking on a more ruthless streak will only be vindicated if they can win regularly against top sides with eleven men” — Is it’s arsenals fault if the rest of the english game can’t play football properly to the same or similar standard to Arsenal that they need to foul and get sent off?
    More of a statement on the poor ability and discipline of the other teams/english players.

    “For this reason the very top players will feel unfulfilled at the club, and it is likely that if Jack Wilshire does mature to be the player everyone thinks he can be he will have to move if his is to be remembered as a winner, and not just a decent footballer that stayed at Arsenal to repay the loyalty Wenger showed in him as Henry did for so long.”

    the same Theirry Henry that is remembered as a winner and one of the premierships all time greats? one of the top 5 or 10 goal scorers
    two league titles and three FA Cups ; he was nominated for the FIFA World Player of the Year twice, was named the PFA Players’ Player of the Year twice, and the Football Writers’ Association Footballer of the Year three times.

    And you claim he wasn’t a winner?!

    Add into that the amount of injuries arsenal get, i implore ANY team to do as good as arsenal without the same amount of players!
    imagine chelsea without Cech, Terry, Cole, Essien, Lampard, Drogba, malouda. for long periods of the season, generally at the same time and then you’ll realise how good Arsenal have been!

    Arsenals soft centre?! as you said, Vermealen and Squallaci are both hard men!, Alex Song is big strong and not afraid!, Abou Diaby isn’t exactly small or weak, Jack wilshere can get stuck in and take just as much as almost any player in the league, Arsharvin although small is tough, Chamakh, Bendtner both big strong and can bully any defence!

    Sort yourself out and actually watch, learn and make your own opinions instead of just re-spouting the useless incorrect dribble you read!

  • Roger the lodger

    As long as Arseman Wenger is at the helm, you will have a club worth watching. A club who are challenging for everything. A club who play Champions League football every season. A club who play a brand of beautiful football that everyone wants to see. A club who are financially stable and now the role model for everyone seeking self sustainability. When the next trophy comes you are not going to say, that’s it we are a good team now! You are going to realise that we are just the same as we’ve always been under Wenger, a great team! Trophies or no trophies. Anyone can win a cup, ask Portsmouth. Up the Arsenal.

  • Asmo

    Not sure what’s more embarassing, the picture or the article. Embarassing error-strewn dross.

  • Adam

    Give a moron access to a keyboard, connect him to the Internet and this is what you get. An article so mind- numbingly dumb that it gives morons a bad name.

  • j

    Luckily for Charlie Coffee, or whatever his name is, ignorance, idiocy, a lack of clarity and foresight and an internet connection are all you need these days to write a bad football blog!

    Where to begin.., you poor and ill informed nobody?

    How about the most obvious and glaring mistake from your ‘article’, though some might call it garbage…, you talk of how the ‘defensive backbone’ of the invincible team was a remnant from before Arsene Wenger arrived.
    The defence from that side read as such…


    Lauren Toure Campbell Cole

    Notice something that each of that back five has in common, einstein???.., yes, thats right, every single one of them was either bought or brought into the team by Arsene Wenger.., oh, thats Mr Wenger to you.

    This article is either the lowest grade of tabloid imitation or just flat out trolling. Either way it has no place masquerading as anything other than the blatant ignorant rambling garbage that it is.

    Get yourself another hobby, writing obviously isn’t your strong point junior!

  • Goonerism

    Jesus you lot. Talk about taking the bait!!

  • Shyster


    I know its a ridiculous post, but why go to so much effort? I mean, its not even funny, satirical or witty!

    Complete waste of space mate!

  • Shashi

    More proof that in today’s world it’s easy to publish your ill-informed and sophomorish thoughts under the guise of ‘journalism’ completely without any quality-checks in place.

  • teddyonthemove

    i’m with Goonerism here, chill the FCK out man! Roll a fat one.

    If the author would have wrote an article praising Wenger and the Arsenal team you lot wouldn’t of commented. Its called having an opinion, he has one, so deal with it.

    There’s no doubt Arsenal have improved, but so has everyone else, that’s the difference! Whether you like it or not, Spurs are a force, and so are City.

    If I was an Arsenal fan I’d settle for the Carling up and 3rd place

  • Dave

    You deserve all the slagging you are getting, what a waste of an article, though I think you already knew that when you wrote it. You slate Wenger, but the bottom line is he has steered us through a very difficult period, rebuilding an aging team whilst our new stadium was being built and we have always remained competitive. It is because of Wenger that we are judged so highly in the first place so I find it ignorant you cite him as the reason we are soft. W*nker

  • mena

    How foolish can you be by falling into the trap of the media? Cesc’s statement was twisted, because the media stir shit, and u belong to the shit that got stir lol

  • Stroller

    ‘Read Charlie Coffey’s brilliant blog….’

    You certainly have a high opinion of yourself, don’t you ? Well there’s certainly nothing brilliant about this effort of rehashed old cliches. Going by your picture I suggest you pack yourself off to rehab to get off the stuff you’re smoking, and then get yourself a ‘load of this’ down at the Job Centre.

  • mangetout

    cesc said basically no matter how many players they had to face 11, 10 or even 15, arsenal always play the same way. he was totally misquoted. i will take a bet that cesc is still at arsenal long after blog is a forgotten folly.

  • shagx

    What a load of crap!
    Name one team that have stayed at the top of the league and qualify for CP EVERY SEASON for the past 11? 12? 13? years! I’ve lost count!
    Name one team that plays better football, day in day out!
    Name one team that can balance the book in doing so!
    Name one team that have built a state of the art stadium while doing all that!
    Name one team that has a better youth policy, in devloping players for the future!

    You don’t know what you’re talking about! We’re building a team from the bed rock to win titles, not buying the title with money!
    That’s the beauty of SPORT! Not glory hunters like you, writing a load of crap!

    Also, may I suggest, if ever you want to take the piss at someone or some organization, GET YOU FACTS RIGHT! Moran!

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