Well, that’s it then, we’ve ended the summer known as the ‘Catalyst for Change’ summer, with that usual of Arsenal things: an underwhelming feeling that comes when you know your club hasn’t done all it can to be competitive.
Here’s the thing: I will go to many home games, I will go to a small selection of away games, and I will of course cheer on Arsenal to win as many football matches as the possibly can. I will hope that the players can come together and form some kind of unity that can be for the benefit of Arsenal.
But I no longer have the slightest bit of faith in what representatives of the club say any more. Ivan Gazidis above all, has had his words hollowed out like a pre-Halloween pumpkin. He promised change. He played the ‘wait and see’ card again. But like the story of the boy who cried ‘wolf!’ he has had his last shred of belief taken from most of us fans.
We’ve heard it all before. You have undermined yourself with your words.
And Arsène, who will no doubt put a brave face on, too has seen his race run in afraid. Like the players he manages, I will hope that he can do something miraculous, but my belief in him over the last year has been shaken to an extent that I now firmly believe Arsenal can never compete for the top honours whilst he is in charge.
He is the man who everyone knows is the controller of all at Arsenal. Don’t let the comments about Alexis and the owner making a decision fool you at all; along with Gazidis and Kroenke he is a massive part of the problem. He is overseeing a decline in a once proud institutions and now – with his decisions becoming all the more baffling on the pitch as well as off it in the transfer market – he has shown himself to be a tired and old man who simply doesn’t have what it takes any more.
The saga that was Alexis’ on/off City move on deadline day was the biggest example of the mess that is at Arsenal right now. Arsène has been steadfast in his belief that Alexis would stay. Ultimately I guess he is right, but the fact that we blinked on deadline day, then went for an almighty and completely over-flated bid for Lemar at £92million just shows how negligent and poorly-planned our whole summer was.
If we’d have told City a price of £70million at the beginning of the summer, Lemar would have been in, perhaps we’d have been looking at another player coming in, in positions where we need to strengthen to compete. But as usually we were left fumbling around like a drunk teenager in a cupboard with a girl at a house party.
At best we come across as naive and not learning our lessons, at worst this club looks like it is hoarding cash for some unknown reason.
I said yesterday that you and I have been lied to by Arsenal. Nothing has changed from yesterday and nothing will change whilst the current infrastructure exists. And that, my friends, is the most draining thought of all. We have a minimum of two more years of the same negligence and there is nothing we can really do about it. Except protest about the way the club is run.
That protest has to be at the whole way the club is run, not by individuals I think, in order for it to gain momentum. For Arsenal to truly move ‘forward’ then a reboot is needed and the three chief protagonists need to be ousted somehow. Arsène, Ivan and Stan all need to be gone. If that holy trinity running Arsenal is out, the spineless duffers that sit in the Diamond club with their blankets will soon follow.
Arsenal’s new motto has never felt more ironic.
We now have an international break with which to at least cool off from Arsenal, which I hope everyone can do, then it’s Bournemouth at home, before the inevitable away defeat to Chelski.
Catch you tomorrow.