Happy Friday! We have made it through the boredom to the end of the week. Less than 16 hours to go till we will be kicking off against Newcastle. Well done to everyone.
Yesterday we actually had some real Arsenal news. Some bonafide properheadline grabbing news.
It came out of Mikel Arteta’s press conference where asked about Arsene Wenger, he replied:
“We would be delighted to have him much closer”
“I think he would have a great time just seeing the environment that he can create around him when he’s around this place because of the respect, admiration and the love that everybody at the club has for what he’s done, as well as for what he represents as a person.”
“What I can say is that I would like him to be much closer, personally, to me because I think it would be a great help, I think it would be a great help for the club.”
It perhaps shows how little Arsenal news there has been in the last week that during the the pre-match press conference, journalists have asked a question in an attempt to create a story.
Firstly, I actually feel for Arteta a bit.
Getting asked “would you like to see Arsene Wenger return to Arsenal?” is a tough question for him to answer. And any answer he gives will create headline news.
If he says “no” the headline will be “Arteta snubs Wenger return”.
If he says “yes” the headline will be “Arteta calls for Wenger return”.
As it is, I think Arteta gave the most diplomatic answer he could.
Listening to Arteta, he seems to be talking more about Wenger visiting the training ground, the ground on a game day. Not returning in a more official capacity.
It is common knowledge that Wenger has not stepped foot in the Emirates since he left us. And that is sad. When Arteta talks about bringing “him close” I feel that is what he is more aluding too.
Rebuilding whatever bridge has been burned, having him sit in the ground on match day like David O’Leary and others do. Have him vist London Colney and Hale End on occassion to chat with staff and players – yhoung and old. This would be a positive influence.
Where I do not think he wants Wenger back is in a more hands on role. And I also think us fans should be against this.
Yes, Wenger is a great man, a grat footballing man, a great Arsenal man. But he should not be looking to have a strong influence on the club has we attempt to move forward from his era.
Have a look at Manchester United.
Sir Alex Ferguson is a board member and is still heavily involved. It is reported that it was his support for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer that led to the Norwegian out staying his welcome.
You also have to wonder if it was his influence that led to the club resigning Cristiano Ronaldo.
Whilst Ronaldo has scored some important goals, his transfer seems to have distabalised the club further and was not in line with what Ole was trying to do – sign younger players and those that will press from the front.
Ferguson is interfering with the day to day running of the club and this is not a positive influence.
There is talk this morning that Ferguson was against the appointment of Ralf Rangnick and has previously blocked the club from appointing a Director of Football.
This shows that Ferguson is worried about his influence at the club diminishing. That he is more interested in maintaining his own involvement rather than handign the club over to a fresh pair of hands. It is selfish.
Compare Ferguson to Dalglish at Liverpool.
Since 2013 Dalglish has been a non-executive director.
Dalglish does not get involved in day to day issues at the club. He does not make any decesions.
In the board room, he ensures the decision makers are acting in the best interest of the fans and shareholders and is a Liverpool voice within those meetings. He has an influence but he does not interfere.
You see Dalglish at games, in the directors box, watching on.
Wenger returning in a non-executive role, sitting quietly and ensuring the board make decisions in the best interest of the club would be something I could get onboard with.
My worry would be that if Wenger returned to Arsenal in an official capacity, there would be too much interference.
It would also leave to his fanboys calling for hm to return as manager everytime we went on a poor run. None of this is good for the future of Arsenal.
Finally we have the World Cup every 2 years.
Wenger is the loudest vocie in pushing this. It shows he is out of touch with fans. With football.
And for me this is the deal breaker.
He is clearly out of touch – or in the pockets of FIFA.
Welcome Wenger back to the club. Let him watch games from the directors box. Organise for him to visit the training grounds to talk to staff and players. And that is it.
Wenger – Thanks for the memories but we do not want you back.
Do you agree?