Sunday, January 23, 2022

Arsenal AGM 2014 – Arsene Wenger’s speech in full

Arsenal’s AGM took place at the Emirates this morning with the highlight, as usual, Arsene Wenger’s lengthy address to assembled supporters.

Arseblog News, in attendance as a member of Fanshare, was there to witness the boss in full flow and now provides the following transcipt. Enjoy…


“Good afternoon. Thank you for allowing me to be here again. It’s always an important part of my season to come here and meet you. Why? I know that you are ambitious. Why? I know as well that you can be sceptical and critical as well. I think it’s very important. I know we have something in common, we are loyal to this club and we love this club. I’m very grateful to see the same faces for so many years now, we share together a love for the club and its values. I know I don’t always please you, but I would love to.

“In front of every season there’s an apprehension that we don’t do well, that we don’t fulfil your expectations. One thing for sure is that we give it all every season to make you happy. We come out of a season [2013/14] where we started with some problems. Let’s remind you that we started last season with a home defeat [against Aston Villa] and more than ever I felt after this game there was a little revolution…a little Tsunami on the club. Why? Because of course we start with a first defeat at home, on top of that against Aston Villa. Why as well? Because we were under huge pressure to buy players at that time and we had not done it. There was a lot of scepticism around the way we’d prepared our season.

“I think if we showed one thing last season it’s that we were united, [had] strong togetherness and were ready to work hard. These are important qualities around the world, especially in a very competitive world today. What has changed compared to a few years ago is that many clubs have resources, many clubs are in the [transfer] market and there’s more finances and choice for top players when we try to strengthen our squad. In the end we managed to buy [Mesut] Ozil, which gave us of course some comfort and some hope as well.

“We finished the season with ups and downs, but finished with 79 points. In 1998 we won the championship with 78 [points]. 79 points means you need to be remarkably consistent. We had 17 clean sheets last season and it was a bit paradoxical. We were remarkably consistent in the Premier League, but when we lost, we lost. We we got beaten in the Premier League last season, it was battered. We came out of the season with many questions, how can you have 17 clean sheets and still concede five or six [goals in a game]?

“I believe a lot, as well, in perspective. Today if you concede the first goal in a big game there’s an 85% chance you lose the game. That’s a statistic. It doesn’t mean that you have to lose the game when you concede the first goal but overall when you are one down you have to come out and you make it easier for the opponent to hit you on the counterattack.

“Overall as well I think we have developed some good young players and in the Champions League we were in a very difficult group with Dortmund and Napoli and I felt we came out well. Bayern Munich was one of the failures, again in the Champions League it was at home that we lost it. In the cup, we won the FA Cup. It was a very difficult run. We played against Tottenham, Liverpool and Everton and when it looked like it became a little bit easier, in fact it was more difficult. We played our semi-final against Wigan at Wembley and the final against Hull City where we had a very difficult time. In the end this team did what teams before did not do. I think we are stronger, I think it makes us more confident and I believe we’ll have a great season.

“We worked on different aspects to strengthen our side. We bought four players, we lost two defenders in [Thomas] Vermaelen and [Bacary] Sagna and bought two defenders in [Mathieu] Debuchy and [Calum] Chambers. We were able to buy as well [Alexis] Sanchez and [Danny] Welbeck, on the last day of the transfer market. There was a lot of talk about that. I believe we have done remarkably well on the transfers. I agree we could have bought one more player, we didn’t find him. We will try in December to rectify that because we are a bit short with the injuries we have. We will rectify that in the transfer market in January.

“What happened as well, today we have developed and bought English players because we want to develop a major core of our team, if possible [with] more local [players]. You can see from England’s last game with Estonia that there were five players from our club in the English national team and as well Walcott was not there. We have a good core of young players who can be the basis of the English national team. I think overall the team is heading in the right direction.

“We’ve tried as well, because there have been some concerns about the injuries, to strengthen our prevention work for injuries. I am a big fan as well, and we do a lot of work on this, developing the mental side, what I call the love for the club. Inside the club we do this with our youth team and with our top players as well. Modern life has become more and more [about the] individual. The players focus on their career but I think it’s important today in the modern world for the clubs to take responsibility to develop the game and [to ensure] the players are attached to the club, attached to the values of the club and we teach them very early in their life. I believe that the future of our modern sport is to turn the game more in favour of the clubs. A player can be happy to make his career but happy as well to be part of something bigger, something stronger, to give something back to the club. We have a responsibility to develop that and personally I’m determined to do a lot of work to develop that with our youth team, as well as our senior players. The modern game has slowly lost that a little bit.

“We have in front a very important season. We have already lost some ground against the top teams but we think we can come back. I am here to tell you that I believe we can do well and that I’m willing to fight harder than ever to come out of this season, and hopefully face you next season, being right. We are united. We are determined. And we are ready for the fight. Of course, that’s easy to say. It’s down there [on the pitch] that we show that and we start on Saturday [against Hull]. The team is united. They still lack a little bit confidence because we’ve been hit hard by injuries again. But this year they’ve been post-World Cup injuries. Ozil got injured on his own. We had Debuchy get injured on his own. We had Giroud who got injured at Everton from basically nothing. These aren’t soft tissue injuries these are accidental injuries. The good news is that we have Theo Walcott coming back now, we have Aaron Ramsey back Monday, Arteta back. Slowly we’ll have a more balanced team again ready for competition.

“So here we are, in front of another big season where we need, of course, your support again. I’m sure we’ll get it. I must say I’m very grateful, we’ve had some home games this season when it’s made a big difference when the crowd have been really behind us. I encourage you to keep doing that because we’ll have some good days at home. Away the supporters are always magnificent. I’m sure we’ll come out of this season stronger, more united and we’ll all feel happy.”


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Good god, I love listen to Wenger. I agree with Stan Kroenke on this one : Wenger should hold seminar.

Andy Mack

Good speech.
Glad to hear that he was looking for another transfer (assume CB) and will look again in the mid-season window!


Very reassuring. Pretty much said he will go and get. I hate how everyone doubts this man. He knows what he is doing, he just wants only the best for Arsenal – that is what has haunted us in terms of player acquisition. The funds are now there and you can see with the latest signings he has what it takes still to get the right players in.


why do i feel hypnotized?


Was thinking the exact same thing!


Wenger has done a good job on me with the hypnosis years ago.


Good speech. Now on to the pitch. Let’s build momentum from the Hull game!!


Did Stan talk about taking that £3mill out of the club?


11.37 Sir Chips Keswick on that fee paid from Arsenal to Stan Kroenke’s sports company in the US: “The £3m fee to was proposed by myself and Lord Harris in respect of wide range of services offered by Kroenke Sports Enterprises. They have an extensive experience and it is of upmost important that we use it to best advantage, There was no competitive tender – they were available to us, so competitive tender was not needed. We are entirely satisfied. In terms of future fees, it will depend on the services provided.”
That clears that up then…


What a fucking guy


“We will rectify that in the January transfer market ” We will see Arsene , we will see.

Andy Mack

They’ll try.
You can’t always be successful if the players (players at the level you want) aren’t available, or you could end up with a squid again.

Gutbukket Deffrolla

Then again, just for once I’d like him to target a CB who is better than Bellerin (no disrespect intended) rather than only looking for a CB who is better than Per. We tried top, top, toppety top in the summer and there weren’t any. I don’t want to see the same again. Good and / or solid CB will do me.

And a second one just to be sure.


I believe!


What happend to the reply button?


Look under the post 🙂 there it is……


Nothing…. but what happened to Rambling Pete?


he posted a couple days ago and it was glorious. #findramblingpete

John Gruffiths

You can’t argue with what he says…. In retrospect perhaps we shouldn’t have loaned out Jenks. Buying a fourth centre back is always going to be difficult as most players want to play regularly. So do you go for an older player near the end of their career or a youngster. We’ve tried the former before and it’s not worked. Buying a youngster seems daft when we already have Hayden and Ajayi. I’d take a punt on Hayden. He looks OK to me and he would hopefully improve the more he plays. Save the transfer kitty for that elusive big… Read more »


The only similarity Diaby has with Vieira is ….(can I say this?). Footballistically, none.

Andy Mack

Driving forward they’re very similar.
We may find out if there’s any similarity defensively.

Saffa Gooner

Mental strength and scary aggression.


Vieira never kicked Terry on the chin, Diaby never sold out and joined the Merc City bandits
Its like there two whole different guys.

however diaby is more attacking and potentially better than vieira but dan smith kinda fucked that up for him.


Can we not recall Jenks?

Rohith J

It would be unfair to West Ham that planned their season based on the availability of Jenks. Besides, he’s already impressed when Demel’s injured. He’ll get more starts there. Hopefully will become our first choice in a few years time while Bellerin hones his skills and Debuchy kicks ass.


Completely agree. He has numbers at DM and anyone he would have bought would have had to be an upgrade. I think he was content to give Flamini and Arteta the task again, while maybe Diaby could come back, or give Chambers a chance… At CB he failed to bring in the numbers. He didn’t want to disturb the Kos-BFG partnership so whoever came in would have had to be willing to settle for the bench initially. Maybe he needs to be a bit more ruthless, but he has always looked out for his players and for what is best… Read more »




Little bit tsunami lol

Glory Hunter

It must be the french accent!!!!


Enough with the football chit chat, I want to know if he sang. He looks like he’s singing in that photo.

Why are we not being told?

Policeman's Bangers 'N' Mash

Everyone hates him then loves him again. Football is like having bipolar.


It’s honestly what makes me love this club so much. The ups and the downs and all the emotional experiences that come with them.

Andy Mack

No. There’s a very vocal few that are like that. But the majority are very much pro AW.

Chambers Pot

Why does he keep saying ‘We are United’? Is it just because we bought Welbeck?! He clearly doesn’t have a clue #WengerOut

H. P. Arsecraft

If you keep doing the same mistakes over and over it won’t matter how hard you work mr Wenger. And that you believe we are only one player short shows how far of you are.


I tend to agree that we’re only one player away, as long as he can cover both CB and DM. Another Chambers would work nicely.


He did not tell us why we’ve always lost away to the big teams. Does he not realize that the team urgently needs a strong and powerful defensive midfielder? No mention of that in this sweet speech!

Andy Mack

He discussed the change in system (see the other thread) which was brought in because of the results in the ‘Big Games’.


Because one guy will force our players to concentrate on set pieces and not give the ball away?

Az Ahmed

Not just the DM but also a CB who would be the spine of the team. Yes the DM is the one who rallies the troops who had a big character, who is demanding on the pitch and off it, same as Vieira and same as, dare I say, Roy Keane.


I know what you did there, Frimmy!


I think we will be stronger when all our injured players return


Very insightful, that. I like the way you hedged your bets a bit, too.


captain obvious


You can come and please me Wenger, if you really want to.


we will do well a long as we play as a team…..when is walcott returning to full fitness?


He’s playing for the U21s Friday night. There’s a tiny chance he may do 30-45 minutes for them and then be on the bench for Saturday, but mostly likely he’ll rejoin the squad for the Anderlecht match.

Abdulsalam Omeiza

This man did not talk of buying defensive midfielder, does this mean he don’t need one.


Arsene Out!!!

Emmanuel Eboue

Well thank god we aren’t buying an ocelot. I really think a fully grown one would make for an excellent right back. I have also been told they especially like Dutch and Portuguese meat.

Tazmanian Jesus

Arsene in!!!


It’s a little bit the bullshit.


Can’t help but feel its a case of day the right things and you’ll placate them for now. Say how you love the club and we’re United blah blah blah Everyone quickly forgets the failures of the transfer market. No cb no cm. Continuing to profess that arteta is good enough Playing ozil out of position. Never taking ozil off when he’s shit! Any other top manager would as a kick up the arse. They would drop him but no play him out of position and play him 90 mins. Smash his confidence and create massive media criticism Why not… Read more »


Given the way the media lay on into Ozil even when he plays well, I don’t think that’s an issue. Taking a ridiculous gamble on his fitness when he was patently injured, THAT’S an issue.

Al Gilmore

What is your evidence that it was a ‘ridiculous gamble’ to play Ozil? Where is the evidence that what ozil said about his knee wasn’t something that he’s heard time-without-number in the dressing room at half time over his 1000 game career? In fact, you wouldn’t even know if at half time in that match there weren’t more than just Ozil complaining about some form of injury? He left it to the physio to assess and monitor and for the player himself to keep updating him on. if you think there’s never been a player who’s played with a slight… Read more »


cazorla was there for the killer ball.
I think you make some good points, but the overall picture of what is being done with Ozil makes me say don’t be so blind and defend everything.

Al Gilmore

I wasn’t defending him playing on, I said I understood. I also understand why he is played from the flank, and it saddens and annoys me when people wrongly misrepresent it as playing him as a winger. Check his heatmap….and compare it to a winger. It also annoys me when people say Wenger is tactically inept for playing 4-1-4-1 while at the same time talking about Flamini/Arteta’s failing. when it is the best formation to protect those legs…and indeed did a great job of doing so against CFC who in now way overran us and Flamini played well in the… Read more »


Ok, I’m not a doctor so maybe ‘patently’ was an overstatement. It seems to me that if something goes crack during a match, and it doesn’t seem right, and the player has a history of playing through the pain to ultimately cause more damage, it would be best not to risk things. Usually, I back a Wenger gamble for exactly the reasons you’re saying but this was too much imo. I can’t really explain it beyond that, I don’t think Ozil was even playing that badly, just Chelsea were Mourinhoing pretty hard, and with the options we had from the… Read more »

Andy Mack

I’d be surprised if all 10 outfield players hadn’t mentioned having a ‘knock’ to the medical staff at half time bearing in mind that the Chavs had been kicking seven shades of shit out of us for 45 minutes plus (with the refs blessing!).

Az Ahmed

You have contradicted yourself. First you say we should not second guess the manager, then you ask why he kept Özil on the pitch. If as you say, and quite rightly so, that Wenger knows better than anyone of us fans, he may have seen something in his performance we did not see or there may have been other factors which only managers know. As fans we have no idea what goes on behind the scenes, why players are played in certain positions, why they are played at all. The point is, we don’t have the information to hand that… Read more »


Our def this weekend is likely to be
Bellerin per monreal gibbs

Jelavic against monreal in the air! Great

Extremely predictable! Luckily not against a top team but no doubt that will happen


I would have thought this was perfect for Hayden, more of a physical game without too many tricksy players.


Aw has said with a straight face that Monreal is a competent cb. He rarely looks a competent lb

Follow the money

Zzzzzzzzz talk talk talk. Should have retired him and got Bielsa who was available. He’s got Marseille in first place in a league with two big money teams Monaco and PSG


Bielsa will run that Marseilles team in to the ground by April


Monreal and hayden are class players. Hayden captain of the youth teams and monreal part of spainish squads that won international trophies so he has brilliant pedigree.


Even if you disagree with some of the man’s decisions (or maybe we don’t understand some of them as we are not privy to all the facts from within the club)…

…You can’t deny this man’s love for Arsenal.


As mentioned. There has been a lot of prattling on about Arsenal’s war chest and faciful thoughts on how we could have got the likes of Costa or Fabregas for 30m mark. The fact is CHelsea can a) Spend more and push prices higher if we so decided to go into a bidding war with them for their preferred targets b) Pay more in salary. Choose to believe fabregas about Arsenal being his first choice if you like but if we have not already learnt about the mercenary nature of loyalty from RVP or indeed Barca DNA (and it cuts… Read more »


Whew that’s some serious Wenger love fest you got going on there, get a room please!


Not again….
1. Giroud scored 22 goals(16 of which were in the league). Not too shabby, but also not good enough for a team challenging for the title considering he was a guareented starter and the likes of dzeko, bony, sturridge, aguero all scored more than he did despite playing less games.
2. WE NEED A DM…END OF STORY. every top team in europe has got one. Flamini and arteta won’t win you the league. they wouldn’t even get into Southampton first 11.


Flamini was our best player against Chelsea and please dont tell me that waynama is better than either arteta or flamini


But Schinderlin is….


so you don’t think Wenger should be sacked!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I think the board should take their B***s out of the freezer and sack Wenger for not buying 2 world class CB and 1 DM. we lost out on the Cb who went to Roma because Wenger told him he was 3rd choice which on the recent showing neither the 2 on show should be first chioce.

Wenger should be sacked and bring a manager who will address the issue with the squad that need addressed.

Az Ahmed

I tended to agree with you until you said we don’t need a DM. Talk about losing credibility. It is by consensus in the footballing world that Arsenal absolutely need a strong DM in the mould of Vieira to compete against the top teams. Some even said two DMs to gave up against stronger opposition.

Focus on your team

Asene Wenger, judge me at the end of the season.”

How many years now??? 8-9?????

Andy Mack

And he’s done amazingly well every season for the position the club has been financially.
Now we’re in a better way money-wise, he’s building.
It took the Chavs and $ity a few years of spending big to be successful.



Bendtner's ego

4th choice centerback? I hear Rio might be avail in January.

/ducks head and runs to the tunnel faster than an Albanian international player on Serbian soil.


I swear Wenger must have this sheet of paper rolled up in his pocket, because this is the same old “Rah Rah” bull hockey he has spouted for like ever!


Read the whole thing in Wenger’s voice! xD
Love this man! COYG!

Sam Kabuthu

Behind the Club let’s Rectify in January

Al Gilmore

PR spin some of it is. He talks up achievement and downplays (rather than glosses over) defeats and many will not accept this, because. Well, for some it is because we play the highest prices in the land to watch our team. For some it is because they have been brainwashed (yes, brainwashed) by certain sections of the media to believing that only winning the league or the champions league is success and that everything else is failure for Arsenal. This is why we get the Dunham’s and Collymore’s of this world (huge successes professionally of course, cough) whipping people… Read more »

Andy Mack

There’s also politics involved in transfers. I don’t know this as fact but I’ve been told that Costa and MaureenO have the same agent. May not be true in this case but these things do have an effect.

Fool of a Took

Unbelievably well spoken man, imagine Brendan Rodgers trying to speak like that.

But in the end he basically says “all the right things”, give us some results on the pitch and we all will be happy 🙂


He is great at speech when anybody tries to has more details on Wenger’s facts. 2 defenders lost /2 bought : good but could we focused on a CB instead of 2 full backs and keep Jencko onboard (even if Chambers is better, just a question on what you invest on) 2 forwards : well for my part I was looking for a top striker better than Giroud. As the french guy could be a great sub or other option (but too much waste in front of goal). I think his plan was to put Alexis there before putting him… Read more »


There’s only one Arséne Wenger!


Everyone bangs on about this elusive DM and while I agree that’s probably the weakest part of our team right now, does anyone seriously know a world class player in that position that is available and we could afford (transfer fee and salary). And don’t throw out names of players in Portugal or wherever that are unproven at this level and who you have never seen play 😀 My point is that wenger is not a dummy, he knows what we need and he has gone about getting what we need now we have the money to do that. You… Read more »

Az Ahmed

You probably believed the weapons of mass destruction speech by Tony Blair didn’t you. Don’t give us the nobody was available speech. Even a semi decent player would be an improvement on Arteta and Flamini. Anybody can be available if you pay the price. Bender brothers, Schneiderlin, Mascherano, Busquets, Khedira, deRossi the list goes on. We can afford to pay £30-£40m required for a world class dm. We didn’t do it and that is simply put, failure on the part of Wenger, plain and simple

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