Everything feels a little flat in Arsenal world. A little lacking in energy.
Probably a mixture of our poor form, no mid-week football and the impending easter weekend. Anyway.
Last night we saw Unai Emery’s Villarreal knock out Bayern Munich.
Emery was never a poor manager. He was in fact my number one choice to replace Arsene Wenger. He ended up just being the wrong man for Arsenal.
In the game we love, it is important to not lose the dressing room – and that goes for any job as well; lose the office and your time as manager is over. Emery lost the dressing room at Arsenal.
Whereas Mikel Arteta stood up to the troublesome players and eventually shipped them out, Emery was unable to do so. Whether this was because he did not have it in his character or had no backing from the senior leadership team above him.
When he was let go on 29th November, Arsenal had just lost at home to Eintracht Frankfurt and won just 4 of our opening 13 games. We were playing without a plan and were sinking fast.
Emery will go on to achieve fantastic things in football. He already has a medal cabinet that rivals most managers across Europe. But it just did not work out for him at Arsenal.
I will never understand why fans spend so much energy on former players and a managers.
Every time one of them does something remotely good, they are on social media pushing their depressing agenda. It must be so tiring for them having that mind set 24/7.
Concentrate on supporting the players and management at Arsenal. Put your energy into being positive and happy. Focusing on others will only get your down.
Talking about backing our players, there is a really good interview with Granit Xhaka set to come out.
I have always been a Xhaka fan and feel he gets an unfair deal from Arsenal fans.
He talks about wanting to stay at Arsenal “until he wins something special”.
He has shown this season his commitment to the team and ability on the pitch.
Playing in an advanced position, he has not let us down this season.
Were Xhaka to stay, I would not be upset.
I would still like us to sign someone additional as we need to replace Mohamed Elneny and with European football in our grasp we will need a deeper squad.
Youri Tielemans will still be my choice as that would give us the option of playing someone more attacking in midfield to Xhaka in some games.
Tielemans would also be the cover and competition for Martin Odergaard.
Final thought on Emery, it would not be a surprise to see him get another chance at a top club soon. Probably Barcelona or Real Madrid.
Anyway, enjoy your Wednesday!