Arsene Wenger says Arsenal have shown potential this season but accepts that qualification for the Champions League – should they secure it on Sunday with a win over West Bromwich Albion – does not constitute a fulfilment of the club’s ambitions.
The Gunners beat Newcastle United on Monday night to move within touching distance of a top four finish for the 17th consecutive season, however, having topped the table for so long the boss couldn’t help but lament the injury problems that have blighted his squad’s title ambitions.
“One more win will be top four for sure,” he said last night after the 3-0 victory at the Emirates.
“It will show that the club has been consistent over the years, but we want more. Overall this season I think we have been 17 times top of the league, but at the crucial period of the season we have lost many players.
“We have got to the FA Cup final having played against Liverpool, Everton, Tottenham and in the Champions League we went out against Bayern with 10 men. We have shown we have potential, but we want more next season and hopefully we can do it. But first let’s finish this season.
“We have to live with reality. We have shown quality but at the moment we have 73 points, we can make 79. Let’s finish as high as we can and analyse after where we can improve, what was right and what was wrong.”
The Gunners have netted nine goals in three games since Aaron Ramsey and Mesut Ozil eased their way back into action and the boss was quick to point out their importance to his side’s attacking fluidity.
“I think they make a difference, but at the same period we had Walcott, Wilshere, Ozil, Ramsey and Koscielny all out. Of course you can sometimes miss one or two, but four or five? Every team feels that.”
7 points off top, its isnt a million miles away as a ginger northerner once said. If we had walcott, thats at least 5 points + over a season.
If we add genuine quality like ozil in the summer, add the winning mentality of lifting the fa cup (if we did win it), this squad will get even closer (or win it)
I absolutely love Arsene.
I think he is an amazing manager, one of the greatest to ever of managed in the game.
But he has to change his transfer policy, otherwise we are going to always fall short every season.
He had an opportunity at Christmas to get the reinforcements in, but he didn’t take it, which ultimately cost us.
Nah, the Summer was where we fucked it up.
You’re never going to get the class of striker we needed in January, maybe we should have pushed the boat out but then we might be left with a dud on pretty high wages.
I think spending £42.5m on one player signalled a change in transfer policy already. Hopefully we can bring in some more quality this summer, a pacy striker would be lovely.
7 points off top – add a fit Walcott, a fit Ramsey, a fit Özil, and a couple more top top top quality players and I reckon we’re right up there. Can’t wait to see how next season shapes up, might be even more competitive and harder to call than this year has been.
Think that was a rarity – we are looking at bringing in 4 to 6 players this summer and of those, at least 3 will need to be of a good quality. think we are more likely to see us reverting back to targeting players in the 10 – 15 million category.
What went wrong? A few decent signings in certain areas of our team. With them, we would have absorbed some of the impact felt when Ramsey, Ozil, Wilshere, Walcott and Kos were out injured. Those injuries shouldn’t have crippled us the way they did. So yeah, squad depth (and quality of squad depth) is key.
I call bullshit on that one, we had five or six key players out over the course of our season, any club would suffer from that. Also consider that key players were missing during our ‘death runs’ (sounds like a horrible case of diarrhoea) , the injuries them selves were bad the timing was unbelievably unlucky. You can account for the 7 points we are of the pace with those injuries, no doubt. It is a bitch that it happens so often but I think we do the team and Wenger an injustice when we say the injuries were not… Read more »
Ozil, Walcott, Podolski, Wilshire, Ramsey, Arteta, Flamini, Rosicky, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Kalstrom… This is the definition of depth. You cannot blame depth or quality of depth on our midfield injury crisis in my opinion. The chances that 5 of the best of them will be injured at the same time is so unlikely. It becomes A) hard to convince new recruits to come to such a crowded group, B) hard to keep current players happy when most are fit, and C) silly to invest further in this area with much better locations to invest in. If we are to complain at depth… Read more »
On a side note… how brilliant was that pin point cross from Ozil for Giroud’s goal. As good as our wingers and outside backs are, one thing they have never really been able to consistently provide is top quality crosses. I love Sagna, but his crosses seem to hit the defender right in front of him 70% of the time. Walcott’s are decent, but more just a pass to the area rather than deliberately aimed and accurate. Podolski probably is the best but hasn’t been getting the time. Ozil is magnificent. As soon as I saw him get the ball… Read more »
A win on Sunday could see Wenger play Diarby in the last game. Personally, I think it would be a nice touch to allow the fringe players to have a run. In fact I don’t care who he picks as long as it not the Inanimate Carbon Rod – that fuckers useless.
that’s not fair, i haven’t been given a chance yet 🙁
Yeh Simpsons type it on youtube..
In Rod we trust!! 😀
Inanimate Carbon Rod saved the entire flight crew of the space shuttle. Not to mention the ant queen and her subjects (if they were able to survive the gravitational force of re-entry). That’s hardly useless is it?
I think I will move on to Barca or Real Madrid. I hear the speed limit is higher in those cities too. I get no appreciation from Arsenal fans. Oh look, lollypop!
LMAO im sure thats a simpson quote xD
We all want more mr wenger more options going forward please pacey striker plus cabaye or bender to replace arteta
Do you just mouth off whatever the hit-whore transfer-rumour generators spew out without a moment’s thought? Yeah, sure. Cabaye’s going to feel really happy hopping to London after six months in Paris. He’ll come real cheap, too.
“We have shown we have potential, but we want more next season and hopefully we can do it. But first let me take a selfie!”
Chezney!!! Fabianski will be starting for the FA FINAL…dnt feel bad because he deserves it:)
Fabianski has to start, but with any luck we’ll be smashing Hull 5-0 by half-time and Wenger can make a cheeky goalkeeper substitution to get Szczezzers a medal!
He would get one anyway (in theory). They don’t just hand out 11 plus used subs…
I think the FA the club can distribute medals as they see fit
This season should be recorded in the Oxford dictionary as the explanation to the phrase ‘What could have been’
We are slowly(very slowly) getting there, Arsene if he stays, really needs to be bold this summer and strengthen the team adequately, we cant use injuries as an excuse anymore. Cos we all know we are going to get them so the best thing is to prepare for them. And that means at least 2 quality players for each position. I know most dont rate Monreal, but if we had a cover as good as him in every position, we would be fine. The aim for next season is to compete for the title and ensure that we beat at… Read more »
We already have 2 players for each position, cept for Striker and CB.
Yeah but with Sagna and Vermaelan both looking like they’re headed for the exit our defence could look a bit shaky again if/when the injuries come around.
Not to mention it’s a World Cup year, so transfer negotiations are going to be even more time-crunched given all the players and agents will be sunning themselves in Rio!
Lets keep the winning spirit up. And lets grab the F.A. Cup too.. Getting that trophy would overcome psychological barriers for the next season.
“We want more next season”
That’s more like the Arsene we know
Honestly, I’m looking forward to next season a lot more than I have for a while, since 2011 I never expected us to win the title.
This summer will be great for the club, I can feel it in my balls
I just bet my arsehole work colleague (Chelsea season ticket holder) 50 pounds that Arsenal will win the EPL in 2014-2015. 6-1 odds.
A year from now, I can’t wait to rub a wad of 50 pound notes in his face.
6-1 is quite short odds he gave you. We were around 20-1 with most bookies at the beginning of last season.
Incredibly, the bookies have utd at a shorter price than us to win the league next year! That is insulting!
some of Arsene’s decisions this season have baffled me and have seemed to cause us problems. I’d like him to stay but for him to have a squad that has enough depth and quality to still play well dispite the manager making the wrong decisions. I think we need more input on transfers from others not just Wenger. If kroenke or usmanov just gave us 40 mil bang to spend on a player, we ‘d have to spend it and even if Arsene shits the bed strategy-wise at least we’ll have a big player to soften the blow/ rectify the… Read more »
The problem with his statement is that he talks about bad luck with injuries and the potential of the team and no reference to the 4-5 new signings we need. He’s been rolling out the same line for the last few seasons and I get the worrying feeling that in his mind at least a season with fewer injuries and a further year of development this team could win the league when it’s quite clear we need more players. Comfortable end of season wins against Hull and Newcastle with a near full strength team should not be his reference point… Read more »
Totally agree, we have beaten the smaller teams with ease for the majority of the season, it is the big games where we have really been let down. Starting off with the City game, which we were at full strength for I believe? No excuses when Ramsey and Walcott and the rest were all available. I can deal with a pumping once in a blue moon, but I’d expect us to learn from it. We haven’t done that, Liverpool, Chelsea and Everton are all testament to that. I love Arsene, but he is so stubborn when it comes to playing… Read more »
Next year we will have no injuries. No need to spend.
Win both our games and the FA cup and we’ll be six points and one trophy better off compared to last season; with a disastrous injury list in comparison also.
That is tangible improvement and surely that’s what we wanted to see at the start of the season. Anyone who says we haven’t moved forward is living in cloud cuckoo land.
The fact that we all feel disappointed not being the league title race shows the improvement from last couple of years – while we were crapping in our pants to finish 4th! For a change from the last few years, we definitely were in with a shout (more than a shout even with the spankings, if we managed the Stoke, Swansea & Everton games) for the league title. Also (fingers crossed), we are in the finals for a significant trophy. Although, Chelsea will finish above us there is good chance that they wouldn’t have won anything this year. I think… Read more »
Yep, I’m happy that the squad is improving and we seem to be growing as a team but am I the only one with the nagging thought at the back of my mind ‘what if winning a trophy doesn’t actually enable us to kick on for more, what if we retain our tendency to get a collective nosebleed as soon as we’re near silverware?’.
Fix the bloody medical team and give players a rest every so often.
We always have long term injuries year in year out and it’s always at least four players which always wrecks our season. I think there should be a in depth investigation into it. It has to be more than just coincidence. We are the the only team in the PL that this happens to. It’s either training methods, dietary or recouperation methods. A simple investigation could be the difference between us winning it next year or not. I love wenger and will always defend to the hilt but I think he needs to open his eyes a little
13/14 79pts (if we win remaining games)
A consistent trend of improvement based on overall points haul, we are definitely heading in the right direction, and all this done without careless management of resources
But so has everyone else and we are still forth, in fact I’m pretty sure we were 3rd in 11/12, so we’ve gone backwards in league position terms
10/11 12 points behind the champions 11/12 19 points behind the champions 12/13 16 points behind the champions 13/14 1 to 9 points behind the champions depending on results A definite improvement but still disappointing all the same. Having those runs of hard games didn’t do us any favours and the injuries to Ramsey and Walcott were critical. Also some really disappointing performances from players in certain games. Looks like Wenger is staying and I suppose it’s for the best. I wouldn’t trust Gazidis and co to have a clue what to do if he walked. The most important thing… Read more »
But we’re still forth and we are not anything between 1-9 points from the new champions this season but 1-13. If it’s 13 does that represent an improvement? plus we might not even finish 4th which is also a possibility, we can’t count our chickens just yet.
As for having a transfer strategy, I have no confidence that will happen as we haven’t had one for years. Our strategy is not to identify the best possible players and negotiate their purchase but to wait and see who becomes available and opportunistically take advantage like we did with Flamini and Ozil.
You’re not very good at maths are you?
I am, Liverpool are 7 points clear with 6 to play for, they win their last 2 games and we lose ours that’s 13 points.
When we win ours? I’ve just stopped taking you seriously.
What, like we won all our games this season?
It could have been so different
swansea 2-2 late unlucky goal
stoke 1-0 peno
everton we just didnt turn up
if only we could have put these 3 away!
The big thing for me is don’t screw up so epicly in those away games against city, Liverpool and Chelsea and your not going to then play so nervously in the next one. Those games at the emirates against Chelsea, United and Swansea were entirely winable had our confidence not been so unnecessarily dented – were that the case we end up now on 79, Chelsea on 77. Throw into the mix that we wouldn’t have turned up at goodison expecting more of the same before the game had even started and it makes clear just how stupid those performances… Read more »
Yes we want more! I can’t get enough of Arsenal, I wish we were consistent and no injuries but hey that’s the game, but it could be down to supplements the players are using. It can sometimes make you perform way above their capabilities and this is where injuries come in.
“it could be down to supplements the players are using”
Drop 4 points at home against Swansea and Everton
Didn’t bother to wake up when we visit Everton and drop at least one point
Now we r 73 points. Add the 5 possible points from above. We should have been challenging for the league and FA cup double.
Don’t forget the two Man Ure games. We should at least have drawn in Manchester, and we should have spanked them at home. To put it another way – Man Ure managed only five out of a possible thirty-six points against teams above them in the standings, and four of those were against us.
Arsene sounds like a man who is going to continue at the club and he’s excited about it. the amount of confidence he put in Ramsey when fans were wiping the floor with him makes me think he is some sort of a see the future Jedi. he loves the club and 3 or 4 years is it? for the contract. heck just stay as long as you want and leave on your own terms i’m done fussing about a new manager. hes the man, he’s the fucking man.
That doesn’t sound like you…
We’re close. But let’s not forget that this was the year when both Man City, Man Utd and Chelsea had new managers.
Wouldn’t be surprised if Man Utd makes some huge signings this summer, and Chelsea and Man City will also probably be better next year. Perhaps Liverpool as well.
So if we are going to Challenge for the title, we will need some more özil-quality players. But I would rather leave that to Arsene than anyone else…
Hoperfully we will strengthen both the striker Department and the defense. And not wait untill deadline day….
We had Rambo & ozilwhen we were twatted away…. We need a strong quick DM… Arteta is fine against the minnows… Quality recruitment is neede… And we should be looking now…
Meow, I like milk.
Still not good enough. 87 pts would have won us the premiership title this season even allowing for the woeful performances at Chelsea, Everton, Liverpool, City and Man Utd.
We dropped 3 points at Stoke (where we left the Ox on the bench until we were behind) and 2 each from winning positions at Southampton and at home to Everton & Swansea.
We can’t blame our fate on injuries every season.
It’s definitely a case of lies, damned lies and statistics when it comes to assessing whether or not we have made progress. The AOB are vehemently classing everything as a failure and a f**k up…no matter what. It’s failure if we don’t win a trophy and 4th doesn’t matter, but no doubt winning the FA Cup (if we do) won’t satisfy the AOB’s because ‘we threw away the league’. According to the AOB’s we have a shit squad because of AW’s buying policy and yet will say at the same time that ‘if we’d only bought a striker we’d have… Read more »
No half-witted shitbox acronyms.
wtf? the irony is that you write a long ass paragraph while using bullshit acronyms in it. haahahaha
So do we Arsene, so do we. Well, last 3 or 4 years we’ve scraped it by a few points, can’t see any evidence to show next season will change. Expect another gloomy transfer window and then riiiiiight at the end for some tremors to occur that might not even culminate in anything. When Wenger wants players he buys immediately, i.e. Rosicky as Pires replacement; Podolski early in the summer, etc. And you wonder why our players get injured; with so many expected to rotate and play anywhere. Please boss, just splash some of that damn cash early, on some… Read more »
Arsenal would have overcome those injuries if wenger had strengthened sufficiently in the summer and January windows. He didn’t and we lost. The injuries are not the issue but the managers inability to plan for them is…
Top of league at xmas with one hardworking but slightly limited striker, you HAVE to go out and get (on loan, or buy) another striker.
This not happening is a FAILURE. not blaming wenger per se, but if the club cant get it done wenger and gazidis need people in who can get it done.
One striker, another 5 goals in some crucial games and we would be right up there. Its not ‘bad luck of injuries’ that happens every year.
This has been a self inflicted problem and we have to fix it
We want Gustavo next season.
“Overall this season I think we have been 17 times top of the league, but at the crucial period of the season we have lost many players”
Did Ramsey absolutely have to play all the games in December? If I saw that it was better to rest him against lesser opposition, why couldn’t the people who are paid to see it?
Also, do the injuries explain shipping 6 goals to Chelsea, 3 to Everton and 5 to Liverpool?
“Wenger: We want more next season.” But we could have had it this season. At the moment, we stand just seven points off the top of the table – and with two easy games to come. Wouldn’t it be fantastic if we had just eight more points? That’s just two wins and two draws. Of course we should have. Just imagine if we had signed Higuain for the asking price instead of fucking about haggling. Just imagine if we had also bought another back-up striker like Loic Remy. Just imagine if we had gone and bought a top-quality defensive midfielder… Read more »
Wenger talked about a fear of failure with other managers, his problem is not only an acceptance of failure but he has a fear of success. The minute we look like we have a chance he’ll find a way to balls it up
The squad IS better this year, and we will get in some more quality this summer, at least if we don’t then I’ll buy a pitchfork myself and light up the torches.
Very difficult FA cup early round games and a very difficult champions league group hasnt helped lets be honest.. lack of rotation i can understand we dont have the deph of city and chelsea yet.. i feel we need new signings and the media team looks at and then fingers crossed the same wont happen next season… ask Liverpool how they kept their very thin squad fit if they have 5 injuries to key players they would b 7th imo
We have had bad injuries but let’s be honest, we’ve hardly helped ourselves… We don’t really do squad rotation unless it is forced upon us and in some instances (giroud) failure to buy adequate replacements has prevented us from rotating as much as we need to… Just remember all the games before Xmas where we played lesser teams but didn’t make any changes (especially in def and up top), a bit of rotation there might have prevented injury and burn out that has fucked us in the long run… Just saying
The problem is this season SHOULD have been the season. Fergie gone, Moyes in, Morinho and Pelligrini in their first season in charge with players who are not theirs. Just look at who is top of the table and tell me we couldn’t have been there.
You can’t balem injuries every season, and you can’t blame them for MULTIPLE humiliating thrashings against your rivals.
Arsene, you have wasted a HUGE chance. Who knows when it will come back.
I would have liked another striker too. But none of the injuries from our crisis were to strikers. Having another striker to rotate with Giroud so to minimize fatigue is a fair point, having a better second option than Sanogo is fair too, but another striker on the bench is irrelevant to covering when Ozil, Ramsey, Wilshere, Walcott, and Kos are all down at once.
No excuse, Chelsea beat Liverpool without, Cech, Terry, Cahill, Luis, Ramires, Hazard, Oscar, Et’o
I’m not making an excuse. I’m saying that having depth at striker wouldn’t have helped meaningfully with our injury crisis because our starting striker wasn’t one of the injured ones. As to whether our injury crisis is a valid excuse for our capitulations in light of what Chelsea achieved without many of their stars, I think there’s something to be said for the big squad Chelsea carries as a result of their deficit spending (so there’s less drop-off from their first-choices to second-choices). But I definitely believe that our tactics in the big matches did not adequately address the talent… Read more »
it’s all if, but’s and maybe’s but I would argue having another fresher more mobile striker might have just eased the load from our midfielders and perhaps made them a little less fatigued and decreased the chances of getting injured. But that said we have so many midfielders (with the exception of defensive midfield) proper rotation should have kept them all fresh. Any combination in our attacking 3 midfielders of Podoski, Ozil, Cazorla, Walcott, Ox, Rosicky, and Wilshere should be able to beat at least the bottom 10 teams in the league if not 14.
That’s a one-off, and it’s disingenuous of you to try to use one single game to make your point that Chelski wouldn’t be as affected by multiple key injuries as we were. Let’s see Chelski play a third to half the season without Cech, Terry, Cahill, Luis, Ramires, Hazard, Oscar, Et’o. Where would they be then?
It’s not, we didn’t have multiple injuries when we played Liverpool, Chelsea or Man City, look at the line up’s, we’re missing 2 or 3 first choice players at the most from our starting 11’s, that shouldn’t lead to being hammered. This rewriting of history has to stop!! starting line up against Man city: Szczesny, Sagna, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Monreal, Flamini, Wilshere, Ramsey, Ozil, Walcott, Giroud Starting line up against Liverpool: Szczesny, Sagna, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Monreal, Wilshere, Arteta, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Cazorla, Ozil, Giroud Starting line up against Chelsea: Szczesny, Sagna, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Gibbs, Rosicky, Arteta, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Cazorla, Podolski, Giroud It’s complete bullshit… Read more »
Fatgunner I do not care for your ramblings very much. I read first 2/3 lines then zone out.
Dont know why, but couldnt resist reading that comment in the voice of Herr Flick from ‘Allo Allo’
I think Wenger should get one more year to see what this current team can do… With the addition of one or two more. It’s very easy for people to say go out and throw 60/70 million at a forward, but who? And I don’t mean that in a smart way, I’m genuinely curious because I don’t see who is available and worth it. People will jump on the Costa band wagon but you would have to be mad to pay 60 million on a player who has had 1 good season, and that’s all he has had. He has… Read more »
Arsene Wenger is paid millions of pounds a year to come up with these answers, he’s also had 17 years in the job and £120m+ in the bank to rectify the problem, I don’t see what the problem is?
Arsene has limited (ands not particularly a brilliant); history of buying in ready made World class for arsenal, its always been that his been able to develop on potential. The difference between the first half of his arsenal career and the second was that we had the ability to retain our world class players whilst others developed through the ranks. It does make me a bit more hopeful going forward. I don’t see Koschelny or Ramsey etc going anywhere else anytime soon, and our financial situation should mean we can afford to offer competitive wages to the less mercenary players.… Read more »
No one does it better than @fatgooner.
Arsene. Please ask yourself this one question and be honest with yourself. Can you put outwit Jose Mourinho in the games we play against his team next year? If the answer is yes then go forth and do what you’ve got to do. If the answer is not then please gracefully move aside.
That said, 2 years with all that resource and nothing to show for it. What a specialist in failure you are jose.
Translation: he won’t be signing any big names and won’t do much to improve squad depth regardless of the fact that we will continue to be decimated by injury while still sticking to his training methods and tactics
Key injuries at a crucial time and tactical naivety combined with a lack of confidence in the big games. Oh, and lack of a world class striker. Put a couple of those things right and, yep, we should be right up there. Put them all right and we would be very good indeed.