Tuesday, June 6, 2023

Shaun O’Connor returns to Arsenal

Brentford have announced that Shaun O’Connor, their Head of Academy Recruitment, has left the club to ‘take up a role’ at Arsenal.

O’Connor was previously employed by the club but left under a cloud some years ago. However, with the installation of new youth supremo, Andries Jonker, and the departure of David Court and Liam Brady, he’s been tempted back.

It is believed that he will head up the club’s academy set up at Hale End, which  develops youngsters aged from Under-9 to Under-16 levels.

Brentford’s Academy head, Ose Aibangee, said, “He has set up a recruitment network that is the envy of many clubs and we have a lot of talented youngsters at Brentford due to the work of Shaun and the scouts that worked under him.

“He leaves our recruitment department in very good shape and I hope the fruits of his labour will be seen in the next few years with the progression of Academy players to the First Team.”

O’Connor’s return is part of the redevelopment of Arsenal’s youth system under Dutchman Jonker, and as far back as 2012 the club announced plans to upgrade the facilities at Hale End – work which is, reportedly, underway.

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Hope we turn a corner with O’Connor


You forgot John Terry is a cunt.

Other than that, best of luck to O’Connor. Jonkers must be the shit.


this is getting tired


Okay, this is now about as funny as the “take my wife, please” line from the 80s.

Third Plebeian

Ay, caramba!

Merlin's Panini


Gutbukket Deffrolla

Can you hear me, mother?




Unlike Alex Freguson….Arsene Wenger is working on leaving a proper legacy and a club that will be in great shape when he (probably) retires in a few years.
Great foresight and planning is going into our youth development and long term signings.
Arsene knows.


Sorry you don’t ‘big’ Wenger up, by running Ferguson down. If Wenger wants to equal Ferguson in terms of EPL titles, he’s got to win 10 in a row starting this season. Unlikely. And he also need two CLs – also unlikely. As to the meat of your point – how many have come through the youth ranks in the last 17 years to claim regular first team places ? As opposed to getting to the fringe and moving on to Brentford or West Brom ? Only Cole and Wilshere have really made it. We have had plenty of others… Read more »

Siz C

There is no need to ‘big’ Wenger! His achievements do that for him!!!!!

And as much as you want to ‘big’ up Fergie, if he wasn’t so obsessed with his own legacy and actually cared about the club then they wouldn’t be a ‘broken’ or unbalanced’ team.

Van Persie was a poly filler hiding his awful squad of Smalling, Nani, Anderson, Valencia, Young, Cleverly.


We all have our opinions. The facts tend to be harder to argue away or refute. Particularly in a trophy and stats dominated business like football.

You might not like the opinions in the opening sentence and closing paragraph but I’d be keen to hear the factual arguments contradicting what is in between.


its a simple fact that united finished 7th last year. ferguson left the squad in terrible shape and forced through the appointment of a shite manager. its also looking like united are struggling to bring in their targets, which is what happens when you aren’t a champions league team. fergusons hatchet job departure lingering now for 2 years…..


Wenger's secret lovechild (disclaimer - I am not really Wenger's secret lovechild)

Rob67- respect to your opinion, but I disagree. The convenient thing about using facts is that they can’t be refuted, but the beauty of opinion is that it can be interpreted and reasoned. Fergie was a great manager, but the PL was just getting started when he built United into what you would probably call “a global brand” (a good football team). He took advantage and built a great youth system, invested through the club’s success, and thrived. When Wenger came to England, he had to beat a team that had more money, and the stature to bring in the… Read more »


For such a thumbed down post, this has attracted a lot of reasoned argument. Re WSLC – as you said, ‘respect your argument but disagree’ at least with this point. I can assure you that Football is first and foremost a competitive sport. It has to be ! Why have a League table ? Why have knockout Cup Competitions ? What is that if it’s not competitive ? You can put a subsequent interpretation on it if you want. You can call it art. But I wouldn’t. You say Wenger is your idol. Fair enough; neither he nor anyone else… Read more »

Giroud's Mistress

Alex, is that you?

Zorro in the box

Ok, here’s a contradiction for you: [Para 1] – The point being made was about the managerial handover legacy, in terms of the quality of the team and the options left to the next manager as well as the architecture of the club, rather than the trophy legacy. Doubtless, Fergusons awards do and probably will outstrip Arsene Wengers. I’d put this to you though – if it weren’t for the 10 year stadium project, given the winning trajectory Wenger was on previously, do we think he might not have equalled or certainly rivalled Ferguson? Would some of those titles in… Read more »


Thanks for writing out a lot of things we all agree with! Long post, thumbs deserved


Well you deserve a lot of credit for that length of a post – well reasoned and devoid of infantile abuse. And I agree with most of it because you’re agreeing with me, on most of the points. Where I disagree with you is your optimism on picking Wenger’s successor. Hill-Wood – who admittedly makes little sense sober, let alone otherwise – often said he wanted Wenger in the Boardroom. A la Ferguson. This is a recipe for disaster, as Utd have shown with Busby and MacGuiness in the 70s and now with Ferguson and Moyes. Hence my point that… Read more »

Zorro in the box

I suspect once Arsene goes, unless the incumbent is strong willed enough, the pattern of a “Director of Football” will be adopted. That would be a huge shame in my view, but perhaps that’s the structure we’re moving towards. The fundamental difference between Arsenal and Utd in this regard is that Moyes was Ferguson’s choice, rubber-stamped by the likes of Bobby Charlton. Ferguson picked who he felt would follow him and be most similar to him but he would never need to work with that person. Arsene’s successor will be selected by the Board, in consultation with and led by… Read more »


Just one thing though, David Dein picked Arsene…not that that means the question of the board picking the next manager should come up at all really. That’s something they haven’t had to do for 18 years & so you can’t really judge them on that aspect. Although I guess you can judge them on just how long it took to bring a CEO in to the club. Also this might be extremely unpopular but Fergie’s teams had a mental strength that Arsene’s arguably more talented teams over the last 8 years have well & truly failed to match, & the… Read more »


One thing Arsene’s given Arsenal that Fergie certainly doesn’t match though is the philosophy – Arsenal are known for being one of the best teams to watch in the world (even though I’d argue slightly less so in recent years) & I really hope that’s something that sticks long-term.


I agree to some extent but they worked under different parameters where Fergie had much few financial constraints. Also the class of 92′ came through in a different era where the proliferation of imported players wasn’t nearly as prevalent as it is now and you just have to look at United themselves to see how many have come through since then. I can only think of Wellbeck and Cleverly having come through recently everybody else has been bought in. Other than that Fergie left the club in good shape strong revenues and a title winning side but it only takes… Read more »

Springbank 1965

Ferguson will inevitably have a legacy role with the only people who matter to ManU – namely the fanbase.

He’ll have stands named after him, statues erected, car parks, pie shops, pizzas, hair-driers, and noses. Even well after past players’ memoirs tell the world what a cruel and spiteful person he really was and how all his tactics were rubbish he’ll still be promoted as a great manager.

All that matters is that we shouldn’t give a fuck. Better still, we shouldn’t give a ‘flying’ one.

Edu's Braces

I was talking to a non arsenal friend about football and he knew nothing about man utd’s youth coaches or fitness regimes. Cheers blogs, nothing like out nerding a football friend.


With this summer’s acquisitions, it’s clear we’ve not only negotiated a tricky bend and turned a corner but we are speeding off. Great times ahead. I think the greatest acquisition this summer was retaining Arsene Wenger, He sure knows how!!!


well, one of two scenarios is valid here.

O’Connor could be totally pants, in which we Must have JONKERS AAAHT!!!

or O’Connor is actually awsome, in which case JONKERS must be BACK IN!!!!

either way, gray areas are obviously forbidden.


come with me if you want to live


Absolute genius!

Dial square

What was the “dark cloud” that he left under??


It was raining pretty heavily that day

Hardcore Hleber

I think the invincibles is more than enough to define wenger’s legacy, and Fergy has how many golden PL trophies?


@hardcore hleber (great name), I was gonna make a comment about the Invincibles too, but you just summed it up nicely.

Tazmanian Jesus

Jallen, some say there were even thunders…

Gooner '75

FTS!! If tommys been verminated, as im hearing, reading then FFS buy an experienced centerhalf And FFFFS dont sell him to mancs.#excaptainsgraveyard!!

Gooner '75

@ZORRO like what your saying mostly but re para1 ARE YOU FORGETTING ABOUT ROMAN SONOVABITCH???

Zorro in the box

No not at all, but when Arsenal took their foot off the accelerator in favour of the stadium project, Abramovich’s Chelsea took our place. If Arsenal had wanted to compete, we would have although it would have been a 3 way battle, 4 way when City were financially lifted. And without that stadium project and the commercial deals that went alongside it, Arsenal would have slowly started to slip away.


my head is spinning with reading all these long posts.wonder why I took time to read everything.


To be an arsenal fan is better than winning a Trophy wit Maureen.

Black Hei

Well said.


So many long posts…..Stopped reading at some point, can’t understand why anyone, let alone a proper Arsenal fan would say anything negative about Le Boss. He can be very stubborn though *lol* but I wouldn’t want anyone else in his position presently. *OneArseneWenger*

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