This is something I wrote a couple of months ago while the season was still going on, but unless I’m going mad and can’t find it, I never posted it here. I just found it again, and with a few tweaks it’s still pertinent, given that no money has yet been spent this summer.
There’s been a dilemma for Arsenal fans for several years: would we rather have a trophy or a Champions League spot? Many would now choose a humble League Cup if it meant hoisting something shiny and silver, but as soon as all chances for that are gone for another season, we’ll take fourth place, thanks very much.
But the problems don’t end there. Dilemma number two: even if we end up in the top four, should we stick with a manager who consistently delivers a top four place but nothing else for eight long years, or do we jump into the unknown? (I know; we Arsenal fans are very, very spoilt. About 89 other clubs would happily swap positions. That’s a discussion for another time.) Do we keep Arsène, hoping that he might splash out some of the vast cash pile Arsenal have accumulated and restore our former glories, while still having the safety net that he seems to always get us into the top four anyway? Or do we give a new manager the cash pile to spend on the basis that someone should? These end of season parades with the bank statement are getting dull.
So keep Arsène and be relatively successful but probably without an actual trophy, or ditch him, spend a load of money and possibly be very successful – or quite possibly less successful. If you don’t spend big money in football these days you won’t win things. The problem is that spending big money doesn’t guarantee success, it just improves the chances.
The plain fact is that the current Arsenal team is not good enough to win the League. What it needs is a stronger spine: more solid keeper and at least one central defender, and top class centre forward. The team needs money spending on it, but it doesn’t need someone to come in and throw everything away and start again, it just needs the current manager to be a bit bolder in the transfer market. The money is there. We all know the money is there, it’s plainly visible in the accounts. This is the frustration for Arsenal fans: we’re never so far away from success that we give up hope and say let’s start again from scratch, we’re always a couple of very good players away from a great side.
We used to have great players. You forget how good they were unless you watch something to remind yourself now and again, so here’s a link to ten minutes of Arsenal from 2003-2005. It’s breathtaking football, and you can forget any notion of the current Arsenal squad being the best ever.
Being a football manager is easy. Being a good football manager is much harder. You can’t easily define the ideal manager because really at best there’s only an ideal manager with a particular set of players. As Arsenal fans we’d be foolish to throw everything away by getting rid of Arsène Wenger too soon, when with a little boldness and relatively minor changes we could be genuine challengers again. By that I mean just spending the money in the bank. Not worrying if the asking price is £2m higher than your own valuation, and dithering until another club steps in and makes the decision for you.
Alex Ferguson spent £24m on a 29 year old striker last summer. That was not a long-term investment, but it was enough to provide a season of goals and the momentum to win back the title. The financial benefit of being champions of the most widely watched league in the world is easily worth £24m. This summer Fergie will probably do something similar, and next season his team will still be challenging. They won’t win the title every year, but they will be challenging.
If Arsenal and Arsène had followed the same policy of speculating (just a little) to accumulate, we could still be fighting for first rather than fourth. We’re not even talking about spending money that isn’t there, JUST MONEY THE CLUB ALREADY HAS IN THE BANK! That’s the frustration of being an Arsenal fan.
One thing’s for sure: Arsène Wenger is not getting sacked anytime soon. The only person who could make that decision is Stan Kroenke, and he has no interest in getting rid of a man who keeps the pounds rolling in. Even if Arsenal hadn’t finished in the top four, the only person who would make Arsène Wenger leave Arsenal is Arsène Wenger. So this summer I’m resigned to ‘only’ having another season of Champions League football to look forward to. But if the money is spent this summer, maybe it’s a different story next year. Go on Arsène, amaze us. You’ve done it before.
25 thoughts on “Why Arsenal MUST Spend Money This Summer”
Spend on quality or leave it all for your successor next summer.
Arsenal must spend money because they have been bragging about it all summer and nothing short of big name signings will prevent a riot. Fans are fuming and BIG trouble is brewing
The object should be to spend well, and within our recourses
We do have money, but you also need to convince the selling club to sell and convince the player to join you.
By the looks of it we’re trying Cesc+Suarez would take us up a notch, and signing both wouldn’t surprise me
Quality players and agents hold out for the best payday, so no matter what we have in the bank Man Oilers or Chelski will be able to bankroll and beat any deal we have as they spend beyond the riches of football, so it’s waiting time and we rely on the greatest manager of the modern era,
Why do we have to spend? Which one have on our website told you that we are going to spend? Do we need Suarez,-NO! Higuain? -maybe…Bernard? -maybe…
Suarez NO, Bernard YES as he is better than Walcott, he actually looks before he crosses the ball to see what options he has, unlike Theo and as regards Higuain DEFINITELY need him more than we have ever needed any player. To not buy him is biggest error AW ever made, it is in fact a sackable offence
Another problem you seem to have is harping back to the invincibles, Did you really know any thing about those players before Arsene signed them and I would be interested if you could work out the cost of those players..
Also we sold other players to fund the invincibles,players like Overmars Petit, Anelka,Edu, it just goes to show what a genius Arsene is,
This Fabregas deal is a fantastic piece of buisness for Arsenal.
We get half of Barcelona’s sale price plus the £35 million Barca already paid.. Wow
“If you don’t spend big money in football these days you won’t win things”
1word reply to that statement…….Wigan
Good point, though I don’t fancy the relegation so much. (I did write the piece before the FA Cup final.)
Another One-word reply 2 dat statement- and this one doesnt involve relegation- SWANSEA
I don have an issue about the 8 years wihout a trophy. The competition for the top trophies has never been more fierce. Other teams have spent fortunes on individual players to achieve their goals, and as a rule have succeeded. My problem is with the quality of fare we are being offered. Arsenal are boring. They have none of the verve, elan, panache, even in the years we won nothing. They are now workmanlike, semi-efficient plodders. I can’t remember us going into a top game expecting to win it, when it has mattered, for ages. The champions league semifinal against man u was such an embarrassment, home and away. We are being so outplayed in all the big games. We are now back to square 1. None of the top players want to join us. We’re broken!
Totally agree. When I think of the power and elegance of the invincibles, I realise this team is boring in comparison. The fluency, power and speed of the invisibles was a joy to behold.
Personally I think Wenger battles with himself. On the one hand I think wants to buy big, but when it comes to it he CAN’T. I truly believe he has a mental health problem. OCD over money. All our clubs recent troubles are related to this. The answer is for him to get therapy or leave. I truly believe he has OCD and he just cannot buy the big players.
I actually agree with you that he has some sort of mental problem not being able to spend decent money for decent players. I have thought this of him for the last 2 seasons
Nice one in fact what you wrote it s was true but we arsenal fans don’t know whether arsen wenger and his borad will hear your comment but i will like to see lius suarez in our squard the team need more player and more expirenc but the fans we only be commenting and noting will be done
Nowadays spending money is in the order of two to three hundred millions..
So when you ask Arsene to spend money how much you mean ?
The educated guess that everyone is talking about is in the bracket of 70 to 80 million
Big names they don’t move for less than 30 million.And that is only the transfer fee ,Their Wages start 100K /WEEK X 52 X 4.Years =50 milion. gone on one player.
Stan Kronke he did not come from America to do charity for arsenal.Surely he need some treat that requires a delicate attention ala 20 millimetre,Ehhhhh ?
So lets just dream lightly please.
The swords should be brought out at the close of the TW.. Isnt it just too early for cutting off heads ?… Yes we arent happy cos we’ve not won nada in yrs but these dudes came out to put the ropes around their necks by sayin we can afford Ronaldo, Messi, Neymar Jr, Ibra all put together cos the money is now available.. Now we sit holding the other end of the ropes to do watsoever come August 31st.. Till then We wait
Totally agree. When I think of the power and elegance of the invincibles, I realise this team is boring in comparison. The fluency, power and speed of the invincibles was a joy to behold. This present team are so slow in comparison.
Wow…. what happened phil?
I can’t belive your actually trying to back
Mr wenger up…. is this a new leaf?
you must have hit your head on the way in ……surely?
Reblogged this on Maxwel Omondi's Blog and commented:
If wenger dosen’t spend…he is definitely seating on a time bomb which is already ticking…when it explodes his reputation at arsenal will be questioned..
I don’t know whether to thank you or curse you, but clicking your link on to the Invincibles highlights just brought back to me how great we really were then and how far we have deteriorated since. Just as an aside, how good Reyes looked at one time. He was never the same after the Nevilles were giving free reign to assassinate him at Old Trafford – shame!
The move to the Emirates was supposed to generate more money to keep improving the team. Well the first bit has worked, but for reasons that mystify most Arsenal fans is why they have not fulfilled the second part and spent some of the huge reserves that have built up in AFC bank accounts.
If you added up all the money that has been wasted on the likes of Squillaci, Santos etc, then Wenger could actually have bought several top players, but he seems afraid to commit a large sum on an individual. Therefore we have ended up with a huge squad of sub-standard players that are never going to win any trophies for you.
Well where do we go from here. I only renewed my membership for next season (£50 just for the honour of buying a ticket) on the promise of Wenger spending at least £70m – it has not happened yet. As usual we are linked with so many good players that would make the difference; Higuain, Williams, Fellaini but don’t rush to the bookies to put money on them arriving will you.
I have supported Arsenal through thick and thin for over 50 years now so do want any traitor allegations levelled at me, it is just that instead of feeling part of the happy family that was Arsenal FC, I now feel like a digit to have money extracted from.
I can’t imagine a more accurate assessment of the situation and of what needs to be done. As a matter of fact both the Great Gatz and Wenger have said much the same, in so many words – Arsene with his ‘need to bring in exceptional players’ and Ivan with his comments about ‘matching Bayern’s financial firepower’. They know that Big Clubs cannot win Major Trophies without spending Big Money, and no doubt the pair are doing their utmost. But while AFC have adopted austerity (in squad quality), other Big Clubs have gone for growth. Time has moved on, even a year makes a difference. Last summer £70m seemed to be big money, this summer it seems more like pocket money. Last season the £39m Robin/Alex fees might have paid for two ‘exceptionals’ – this year it may stretch to Suarez. The new boys on the block – Chelsea, now Man C, soon to be PSG) have grown big and strong. Along with the regular Big Beasts (Man U, Barca, Real M, Juve, Bayern, etc) they aren’t going to allow Arsenal to muscle their way back into a seat at the top table – not if they can help it. Rooney? Higuain? Fabregas? No way, not unless they are crippled. Suarez? Maybe.
@Sid are you Wengers lovechild or something? “Do we need Suarez?No” – Really? SO we don’t need the best player in the league last year? Right ok. This is the problem with Arsenal these days. The fans are all too happy to accept averageness.
I really cannot disagree with the sentiments, if maybe not the details. We need a striker. Thats not about Giroud, I think he will come good this year, but he isn’t enough.
We have the money to pay the fees, and the wages are not a problem as we have freed up enough from the deadwood to pay for 2-3 top end players. The fact is everyone knows this, so there are no excuses this year.
It just looks like the other clubs know this as well, so its going to be a long summer prising the players we want free from their current locations.
The Invincibles were something unique, and sadly I don’t expect to see their like again, although I’d love to be proved wrong. It isn’t just having a good squad, everything came right that year.
By the way, Invincibles first 11 assembled for around £44 mil (helps that 2 were free and we got Kolo for 27p and a packet of Quavers).