Gazidis backs pioneer Wenger’s long-term vision


Ivan Gazidis says Arsene Wenger retains the full backing of Arsenal’s hierarchy as he gears up for his 20th anniversary in charge of the club.

With only one year remaining on his current contract, it’s possible that Wenger, 66, could call time on his time at Arsenal next May; a departure that many, outside the boardroom, feel should have been forced a long time ago.

Batting off the criticism directed at Wenger, the Gunners CEO cited the Frenchman’s long-term vision for the club, pioneering attitude to analytics and fitness, as well as his influence in luring big name stars to the Emirates.


“I don’t have a nostalgia for [Wenger], and the board doesn’t have a nostalgia for Arsene,” Gazidis told ESPN.

“That’s not why we believe in him. This isn’t a football club that looks backwards. This is a club that looks forwards and is always, always pushing the boundaries of how we can progress.

“That’s why we built the new stadium. That’s why originally we hired Arsene Wenger and that’s why we’re keeping him engaged and involved in the project that we’ve embarked on.”

He continued: “Arsene is highly intelligent; very, very devoted to the club. He lives and breathes football. He’s massively respected by his players. He’s a big reason why players like Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez want to come to Arsenal Football Club.

“And he’s a manager who remains at the forefront of thinking in all kinds of areas around the game; his involvement with analytics, with psychology, with what we’re doing on fitness.

“I think one of the challenges we have as a club, is that because we have constant [presence] and have somebody who is resilient, consistent, disciplined, and clear in his thinking, perhaps sometimes people outside can get the impression that there is nothing changing.

“And nothing could be further from the truth. We’ve made dramatic changes in how we operate as a football club, in all of the areas I mentioned.

“We have to be world-leading in those areas, and Arsene has been not just deeply engaged in those areas, but driving many of those areas forward.”

Addressing the fact that Arsenal have consistently fallen short of winning the title since the ‘Invincibles’ era, Gazidis made clear that the frustration at a lack of silverware is shared up and down the club.

“Our fan base is frustrated that we didn’t win last season. We’re frustrated that we didn’t win last season,” said Gazidis. “I am. Stan Kroenke as our owner is. Arsene is. Nobody is more frustrated than he is; disappointed that we didn’t finish on top because that’s our goal.

“I am. Stan Kroenke as our owner is. Arsene is. Nobody is more frustrated than he is; disappointed that we didn’t finish on top because that’s our goal.

“What I see is a manager who is deeply committed to this football club, devoted to it, continues to think about the long term.”

Gazidis’ wide-ranging interview also touched on Arsenal’s summer transfer activity – we’ve detailed them in a separate article, here. Maybe grab a stiff whiskey first though.

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One Arsene Wenger


At first glance, I read the headline of the article as – “Gazidis backs Pensioner Wenger’s long-term vision”!!

A Gorilla

So fucking bored of this waffle


The more I read this cretinous rubbish as it is trotted out each season, the more angry I become. I am not by nature a hater but I am really starting to feel something more than just contempt for this Club’s hierarchy and that includes Wenger. We were promised – time without number – by Hill-Wood, Fiszman, Dein, Edleman, Friar et al – that the whole point of moving to the Emirates was to match not just the best here but the best elsewhere. Hill-Wood specifically sited Real Madrid, as an example. Then we had the decade of austerity, when… Read more »


More corporate bullshit tripe

Sir chips

“I totally back you arsene”

“Can i have some cash then?”

“Lol no”


I bet that Ozil and Alexis were waiting exactly for the “few superstars and young talents around them” argument to sign. Every pro hopes to play together one day with second league talent maybe gonna be Mahrezes.

Paddy Morgan

Talks about looking forward then cites moving into the Emirates 10 years ago and hiring Arsene 20 years ago.


Is there anyone actually left on the board who hired Arsene all those years ago? The main men responsible Fizman and Dein aren’t there, and if they were they would clearly have taken us in a different direction since.

Easy as JVC

Totally right. We always seem to be looking at the future, how about looking at right fucking now.

215 Arse

Robbing cunts


Really concerned about reading the blog today. I am prepared to give the club time until the end of the window. After that I seriously have to ponder whether it is worth supporting a club that has no ambition whatsoever? Whether it’s worth being so mentally and emotionally involved with a club that is only concerned with the finances. I can accept trying and failing but I can’t accept not trying inspite of all resources available. I know it’s not ideal behavior to change your allegiance when the going gets tough. But tbh the going isn’t tough, they just don’t… Read more »


Yes sick of this crap, it’s no fun is it.


I understand your frustrations but are you really going to stop supporting a club because of a lack of success? If everyone did that then 99% of clubs would have no support whatsoever. Arsenal in the 50s and 60s for example. I agree that the club needs to show more ambition but support for a club should, in my opinion at least, be independent of success.

215 Arse

Agreed. I stopped buying tickets and merchandise last year.

Just buy a striker. Easy and done.


I didn’t think so but there is a limit.

I know we’re better off than 95% of clubs but always coming second starts to get really frustrating after a while.

Failing to address the glaring deficiencies in the team starts to get boring after a while.

I honestly cannot see that Arsene is an imbecile so can only think that it is the owner dictating the terms here whatever anybody says.

If money is all that he understands there is only one way that we can speak to him …


You never stop supporting the club but you do stop going to games and buying merchandise etc.i gave up my season ticket 2 years ago.
This time around its such a cynical move from the club. I said on here ages ago that I thought the granit signing before season ticket renewals was a cynical ploy to entice people to renew. Had he said this month’s ago I would have more respect for the club but I feel I’m being proved right.
Sad day for all arsenal fans if this all comes to pass the way we feel it will.


xhaka was not signed before ticket renewal time, that is more of the sort of bullshit soundbite thrown out there by certain blogs and twitteratti and that somehow becomes a”fact”. Renewals were weeks earlier. Its akin to the soundbite that the Asano signing being for “all the profits in shirt sales” when either of these are actually looked at there is no substance of fact in either soundbite.


Support the club. Watch their games and root them on. Just be realistic. If you have issues with the way the club is run, protest by not spending a cent of your hard earned cash on any tickets or merchandise. That’s what I will do.


Trust me I want to. I’ve supported this club through all those years when we were losing one important player after another. We are investing more than the hard earned cash, the passion, the feelings, the emotions. Let me give you this example today something really important happened in terms of my career and I was in a really happy place. And then I read today’s blog and Gazidis’s comments which really dampened my spirits. This made me question why do we get so involved with a club that doesn’t give a hoot about its supporters. I don’t want to… Read more »


so what exactly did Gazidis say that upset you, was it “we want to win the league”, or was it “we are not happy to finish top 4”, is it that he said he and the club back the manager, cos they believe he can bring the club success. or was it that he sort of admitted that we are not able to spend £100M on a player. Is there something wrong with him saying the club needs to be smart in its transfer dealings, maybe you want the club to be stupid in its transfer dealings. so again I… Read more »


I share the same sentiments about finances etc. but no one should need to “convince” you to support Arsenal.

Are you more “convinced” to support Man Utd because of money they spend on players?

Ridiculous statement.


No. I love this club as much as as any other fan.

All I am saying is that we should at least try to achieve our goals. I can accept trying and failing but I can’t accept not trying at all. That is applicable to everyone in all walks of life.


Any fan that actually loves the club doesn’t need to be convinced to support them, and wouldn’t threaten to stop supporting them based on transfers.

We literally have no idea what is happening behind closed doors as well – the club did at least ‘try’ to sign Jamie Vardy (for good or bad) and they probably are ‘trying’ to sign other players as well, but we’ll never know unless it’s made public (which in most cases it isn’t).


ah, so you would be happy if arsenal spend loads of money on players, and fail. it seems the transfer window has become a dick swinging contest for some fans. very odd that.


No club needs a supporter like you. Good bye.


Actually, our club would be better off without people like you who are one of the reasons the club is acting like a corporate organisation. The club management continues to not give a fuck because of blind support. Yes, we should support the club but bad policies must be getting criticism.


ah but bad supporters should be beyond criticism

Jeremy O Dwyer

I honestly believe more people should ask themselves the same question. Lots of us pick a club, or are given a club to support when we’re very young. If, over time, the club you started supporting becomes less and less like the club you fell in love with then why not pick another team that more accurately represents your values. There should be no shame in that. If you value and admire a style of hard working, well drilled, tactically strict football why not support Athletico or a similar team? If you want to support a team that can get… Read more »


If you change teams because of a clubs transfer policy/lack of ambition then you’re not a real football fan and would be better placed with the plastics of city, Chelsea and United who support them only for success. If you genuinely support a football team then it’s through thick and thin.

If all football fans were like that then we wouldn’t have 4 professional divisions with fans supporting shit teams that never achieve anything/get relegated.

I hate the lack of money spent but my team is my team. That’s football.


Agree with you. As a football club Arsenal should be TRYING for footballing success rather than financial success. A striker signing should be a must if Arsenal has any chance to win something. So if they fail to do so, that definitely shows that club doesn’t have any interest in winning. Kroenke already said that fonancial success is more important to him 3-4 months ago. This was a club of Arsenal fans before Kroenke took over. It’s now operating like a corporate organisation. That ‘us’ feeling is losing because of Kroenke and his men. Hope this changes. Anyway, I don’t… Read more »

Dave M

So I guess its Yaya SaNoGoal as our backup striker then, ligue 2 talent…prefect!! can’t wait for the season!

sixteen swans over ainola

Most of us haven’t a problem with the club’s financial model of ‘self sufficiency’.

But that’s not what we’re doing is it? What we’re doing is hoarding truckloads of cash season-after-season with Wenger and the board lording over it like a bunch of modern-day Smaugs.

It’s starting to get both creepy and painful to watch.

Someone should tell them that the only prize out there for being the cash-wealthiest club in the world is derision and more vocal ire.


Carlos Bacca anyone?


More words and statements from the club but I want to see action. I want us to finally buy the required players and have a full strength squad in time for the Liverpool game. Has Arsene learned from the 2011 debacle? From two years ago when we didn’t buy a centre half and had to Monreal there and we were out of the title race by Christmas? Has Arsene learned from last year when after buying Cech he failed to buy an outfield player (the club in Europe not to do so?) despite us needing a midfielder & striker? Time… Read more »


Nobody doubts Winger’s qualities nor do we doubt his weaknesses. The problem is he is the only person at this club whose not a robot. List me the other leaders who have any conviction or personality? Gazidis the puppet? Silent Stan? The guy who got lost in Costa Rica? The old balls on the board? Nobody is challenging Wenger nor helping him. We need more real leaders at this club.


Gazidis wouldn’t know ‘vision’ if it crept up and bit him on the arse. And Wenger is a custodian, not a visionary. The real visionary was David Dein. it was Dein who understood how to sell Arsenal to the players we needed. Dein who understood we need to get bigger and move into a better stadium. Dein who understood the culture of the club needed to change. Wenger just facilitated it. Wenger and Gazidis are just company men who do a decent job of making sure the engine runs smoothly, but they’ll never customise that engine to turn us into… Read more »


Fuck off. Regurgitated horse shit.


Repeated sentence with missing close quotation marks:

“I am. Stan Kroenke as our owner is. Arsene is. Nobody is more frustrated than he is; disappointed that we didn’t finish on top because that’s our goal.

“I am. Stan Kroenke as our owner is. Arsene is. Nobody is more frustrated than he is; disappointed that we didn’t finish on top because that’s our goal.


Did he say that twice just for emphasis?


I’d be happy with Cameron Jerome at this stage. Just sign fucking someone


Is Fucking Someone any good? Can he play striker?


I think Ivan misses the point about all the off-field changes. It’s not that we don’t believe they’re happening, it’s that they seem to be having naff all effect. Presumably, he’s doing it more to defend against accusations that we have a manager who was at the top of his game 20-10 years ago but whose ideas are now outdated and being surpassed by a new generation (which, as you may haved guessed, is a theory I buy into). And we know players like playing under Arsene. But they also like to win things and if we don’t sign more… Read more »


Am sorry, saying something and doing something are different, it’s ok to alway speak but words without action is crazy, last season everybody in the world knew we needed a striker, if we had gotten a striker we would have won the league, some few seasons it was the goal keeper, put your money where your mouth is, its good and proper to tell us your not happy and tell us your hungry for success but when you do nothing about what you say it leaves us thinking maybe your just not hungry enough or maybe your just hungry about… Read more »

Daan van Lith

Iam already done with this season really. We are never gonna win the league like this let alone the champions league. This is the first time since i fell in love with the Arsenal that I am fed up, fed up with our transfer buisness and Arsene Wenger.


Really? You’re done with this season before we’ve even properly started pre-season? That’s embarrassing.

215 Arse

Actually, I feel the same way. What makes you think this year will be different?

Give me one solid reason other than blind hope.

Daan van Lith

We wont be better then last year. I mean c’mon man I love the Arsenal as much as everyone on this site and I would love for us to succeed but face the reality we won’t win the league this year if we don’t sign a proper striker to challenge Giroud.


That’s kind of my point though Darth, we’ve not even started our pre-season, nobody knows whether we’ll sign a striker or not. I happen to think we will, but I’ll reserve judgement until the season starts. It’s just plain daft to start writing it off so early.


Danny its clear that to many on here, despite all their claims that everything will be right in their arsenal world if we sign a striker, it would quickly change to, its the wrong striker, or not costly enough striker, and even if they were happy with a new striker, they would just pick another position to demand a “new one” for their support and loyalty.
its also clear that many of them can’t distinguish between not getting a signing done, with not trying to get a signing done.


If we don’t make at least 2 more decent signings Ozil and Alexis (and probably Koscielny) will leave in the next couple of windows.

The club has to show ambition as much as build a squad.


Hmm. Did they told you that. With fans like, the club will never win anything.


I see nothing wrong in what he says at all. It’s all logical. It all makes simple reading and it’s hard to disagree with. Not a popular view I know, but I can live with that. The problem is the impatience and ignorance of a large faction of our support. We’ve spent £35m already this season and there is nothing to suggest that we won’t spend more (ok maybe past experience, but other than that). Wenger knows we need a striker, he’s already tried to sign one, do people really believe he won’t try again? Does he really warrant the… Read more »


Yeah right. Wenger in the forefront of thinking in psychology and fitness?? Because we’re still in the late 90s/ early 00s?


Well, he’s at least in the top four…


Yep in other words, no more signings. Gazidis is talking about the wenger of the first 10 years, not the wenger of the last 10 years. The only time this team shows “mental strength” is when it’s in danger of missing the ucl. It always chokes when the pressure is on them the most. Where has this psychological strength of wenger been in 2008, 2011, 2013 and this year?? And fitness?? Please. Gazidis has lost his mind. All you need to do is look at our injury records. The club are being Nostalgic when it comes to Wenger. Fact is… Read more »


In our last three seasons we’ve finished 4th, 3rd and then 2nd. We haven’t sold a top player for a while now. We’ve been fucked over by injuries (again) at the worst possible time (again). We have a top goalie, a solid(ish) defence, a fucking humdinger of a midfield and a decent, if not world class forward. We need to sign a striker without a doubt, but to say we haven’t progressed is a load of nonsense. I don’t give a shit about people feeling a bit pissed off but I’m so wound up by our fans hampering our progress… Read more »

AKB(Not the one your thinking of

How is it that we seem to have an injury crisis every season and yet Chelsea didn’t have much injuries to their small squad when they won the league 2 seasons ago?? Or Leicester for that matter??

Or is it something within us that stops us from actually challenging for the title??

If we don’t address these issues, Ozil and Alexis will leave….and we will be back to 2011


Not to forget 2 fa cups n charity shield. Well said.


Please. So why are we facing the same issues every damn season?? Injuries, bottling at either the first or second half of the season.
Oh and WE DO NOT HAVE A WORLD CLASS STRIKER. We have not won the league for this sole reason. For all our shortcomings in defence, our problem for the last 3-4 seasons have been the strikers. People just aren’t being honest with themselves.

Goondalf de Gea

I guess some fans aren’t as happy to accept this lack of ambition as others. If it was 10 years ago with the stadium build hampering us financially, I’d say fair enough. But Forbes values us as the 5th wealthiest club in the world. Why should we not expect a bit more?


do you know the criteria forbes use to value a club, you know they take into account the stadium, and all other buildings belonging to the club, the players we have, as well as the bank balance. One thing not taken into account is the wealth of the shareholders or owners of a club, its why we can be on a list above man city and chelsea, but still not be able to spend like them.


anyone who says they want our best players to leave, is not a supporter at all. hysterical bullshit, is all it is.


Utter bullshit


Bosscielny pretty much summed up everything I think about the club right now. The lack of desire to TRY and win is making me care less and less each season. If they brought in new players in key positions and failed to win it, fair enough you made an attempt and failed I could live with that. But it looks like the same story again, stick with what we’ve got, don’t take any gambles and probably fall short again. I find it morally wrong I would never live my own life like this I can’t justify it in any way.… Read more »


you mean you’d be happy if arsenal signed a striker and a central defender, along with the already signed central midfielder xhaka. great news, arsenal have signed a striker (Asano), and a central defender (Holding), but despite this, and you saying you want the club to gamble(well is it not a gamble to bring in promising talents, as well as promote from within), I bet you are not happy, as they did not cost enough, isn’t that what you really mean when you say gamble, you mean gamble a large amount of money on players, even if you, me, loads… Read more »


Such a “long term vision” that it’s been more tha a DECADE since Arsenal last won the PL title. I wonder how long this “long-term” means for them, +20 years to be able to win again, Liverpool-like?

Well, most Arseblog fans were quite ok ,even happy when Asano was signed and gave thumbs down to whoever said that’s not good enough at all; are you guys still happy and hopeful? 😀 😀


Matt, did I miss something? Did the transfer window close? Am I wrong to suggest that you reserve judgement until it does?


“I am. Stan Kroenke as our owner is. Arsene is. Nobody is more frustrated than he is; disappointed that we didn’t finish on top because that’s our goal.”

Whoa. Huge dejavu after reading that sentence.


“Birds of a feather flock together.”
Say whatever you want…but the gaps in the squad must be filled.We can’t fight fully equipped opponents with our eyes closed and hands locked.

Immortal Arse

Just spent a small fortune on tickets to see The Arsenal next pre season in Sydney.. Can’t wait to see all the U21 & U18 players our first team will be made up of by then.. Sigh ?

Malaysian gunner

Last season was Wenger’s best chance to win the epl and he failed.This season wont be easy as last season.MU under Mourino will want to erase the last 3 seasons.Then there is Guardiola and Klopp. Of course big names don’t mean you have a divine right to the epl. As for Wenger,make it his last season if he cant deliver the epl.He has been given more added time than the likes of Mourino to get success and has failed regularly. Big Sam has signed a 2 year deal. Rest assured he will be fired if England cant win and win… Read more »


So did 17 clubs who finished below Arsenal.


What a bright spot. Well at least chelsea, liverpool, man united and city can claim to have won the league or ucl in the last 12 years. And us?? Oh yeah…2 FA cups. So much for being a big team. Might as well start thinking like spurs fans.


Chelsea an Man City are the enemy of football, made successful by a filthy cash injection by foreigners made rich by the corrupt oppression of others in their own countries. If that is something you aspire to, then you sir are not a traditional Arsenal fan and have no interest or knowledge about our principles and values. Man United are, so far, unsuccessfully trying to buy their way out of a hole and have the biggest level of debt in WORLD sport. And Liverpool….. every dog has its day. They freaked their way to a champions league, but I wouldn’t… Read more »


My comments are being moderated for challenging irrational negativity in a logical and structured manner? What a pile of arse.


Not sure why your comment was in moderation, but it happens. Chill out, it’s all good.


Thanks, I can relax now


What a lame excuse. And Kroenke is an angel and epitome of moral fiber? Stop with the excuses,these owners care about their clubs and spend whatever necessary to see them at the top.
Wonder what you’d say when God forbid everton and west ham move ahead of us.


It’s not an excuse. Success is earned. Abramovich could have chosen anyone and had the same success. Chelsea are HIS play thing. Their only success is that he chose them and not someone else. They flaunt it like skanky chavs they are but why do you think they hate us so much? They will never know how it feels to win a title without it being placed on their laps by some Russian oil fiend. I’ll say it again, if that’s what you aspire to, you’re not a proper Arsenal fan. And for the record, as far as I’m concerned… Read more »


He has no excuse anymore. Same mistakes every season. 4 times he has lost the title when we were in a position to win it.

Art Vandelay

Old Arsene really needs to sign a quality striker or there’ll be murders over there next season. Not really looking forward to it to be honest.


Blog you are a disgrace. Stop spreading shite and click baiting and instigating fans. Support the club.


Mr.Blogs doesn’t do the news section. Also we are here because we support our clubs. If you can’t appreciate others opinions then don’t expect yourself to be heard either. Well you’re annoying.


I do the news section along with the Arseblog News Hound.

That said, Jags comments are somewhat baffling as a) he doesn’t understand what clickbait is and b) if reporting the words of the Chief Executive of the football club is somehow ‘instigating’ fans then what does he propose we do?


How is reporting what was said by the club’s chief exec at a press conference “spreading shite” and “click baiting”?

Or were you being sarcastic? If so then please disregard my reply.

Derick McMerrick

What does Arsène tell players like Özil, Sanchez and Čech to convince them to sign? Does he give them a false vision, because it certainly appears they are fed a line. They won’t hang around forever with that mentality and the club will begin to decline whilst they hoard their profits and refuse to strengthen accordingly. Euro players are on holiday, some are injured, who do we begin the season with? Arsenal were very lucky to be gifted second and I don’t think they will be as fortunate this year. If they drop out of the top four and players… Read more »


Thinks it’s really sad that there are players like John Stones and Leroy Sane available and we’re not even linked with them!!

Art Vandelay

‘Arsenal rebuffed by Stones and Sane’. There you go.


Kroneke’s sporting clubs have a history of achieving nothing and fleecing fans for money, Arsenal has become the same.

Talk big and do the square root of fuck all, only doing deals (like Ozil) at the very last moment. It’s been the same shit for years and I am sick of it.


Thing is last season was the first under Arsene where we didn’t seem to have a plan and played a lot of nothing football.


I would argue that we have been doing that since 2010.

Bobby P's Bangs

Can it still be referred to as the ‘new’ stadium?

Martin Finley

At the forefront of Analytics, Fitness and psychology? Kind of funny when we have been probably the most unfit team in the league for the last decade and we are renowned for lacking the mental strenght to maintain a title challenge.

Analytics im sure Wenger is great at but Gazidis intelligently left out tactics from his praise 😛


The most unfit team in the league in the last decade? Come on man…


Have a feeling that our club management will still be looking at the future 15 years from now.

Andy Mack

I do hope so!
If they don’t it can only mean the world has ended or the club has closed down.


If the club decides not to buy a striker this transfer window then the obvious alternative will be to change formation. 3-5-2 Either Alexis, Theo or Campbell will have to play up front alongside Giroud. We’ve finally got strength in depth and quality in midfield which must be exploited to give a solid core and balance of this team.
Assuming there are no more signings this transfer window My starting 11 would be
Cech (GK), Defenders— Monreal, Koscielny & Bellerin. CM– Xhaka, Cazola & Elneny, Ozil (LM), Ramsey (RM).. Upfront Giroud & Alexis


I’ve never known a club to be more obcessed with money than trying to win like Arsenal.

The business side might be working but by Christ the footballing operations at the club are appalling.

It’s embarssing at how little ambition there is at this club. For those of you that say that the stadium shows ambition I would remind you that Danny Fiszman (RIP) was the main driver behind it.


fiszman was certainly the driving force behind the stadium move, and was a real arsenal man, but as he was not a media hound like dein, many arsenal fans have a totally false perception of the two men.


I do not, have not, and will never question Arsene’s commitment or loyalty to our club. That is not the issue. Gazidis says we are at the forefront of every facet of the game, yet the end of season result is consistently the same, we finish as loosers. This is because our frailties are the same. Our manager won’t change, he is what he is. Our most accomplished manager ever. But in my opinion It’s time for a change.


In an insane world where people hardly make it financially to the end of the month I find Arsenal policy reassuring. They live within their mean , they believe in youth and a sustainable future.
I love this club even more for that.
They are the only club that keeps me watching football.
Well other than that I’ve noticed it is the second time Gazidis mentions psychology. In the past they always mentioned stats, metrics , diet… But not psychology. Our current squad will be unstoppable with the right mentality ( And injury free).

Young Wheeland

When asked why he thinks Wenger is the man to lead the club forward, Gazidis went down a long list of the Frenchman’s qualities. “And he’s a manager who remains at the forefront of thinking in all kinds of areas around the game; his involvement with analytics, with psychology, with what we’re doing on fitness.