Not only has the pressure on Arsene Wenger reached new levels of toxicity and bitterness from Gooners, but it’s now a larger – and more vocal – section of fans that are, to put it lightly, disgruntled with the man at the helm.
The irony should not be lost that the fans calling for Le Professeur to step aside at the Emirates Stadium have developed this sense of entitlement thanks to the very man they’d like to be rid of. Wenger took Arsenal to heights that were previously inconceivable to the red half of north London. FA Cups, Premier League titles, a Champions League Final, the then-called-UEFA Cup Final and an unbeaten season were almost the stuff of fantasy for Gooners prior to the then unknown Grampus Eight manager’s arrival.
Now, after a decade of dining at the top table but failing to fill their plates to fans’ expectations, the calls for change are greater than they’ve ever been. And the truth is if emotion were to be removed from the situation, even the most loyal of #WengerIn supporters wouldn’t argue against a freshening up in the dugout, even if they just aren’t emotionally ready for it.
Everyone knows that Wenger’s job security is in the green and as close to 100% safe as anyone will ever be. The board will, rightly or wrongly, allow the former Monaco gaffer to leave Arsenal on his own terms.
The common theme of post-Wenger chat seems to be that Arsene will have a huge say (read: hand pick) on who his successor will be. This means, the Gunners will be appointing someone who believes it is his duty to play attractive football, have (blind) loyalty to the Arsenal players and someone who has a say in everything that goes on at the club.
If the Wenger 2.0, whoever he or she may be, is hired, Arsenal will stagnate further. They will face the same obstacles and disappointments each season and the unrest will reach levels of toxicity that make the current atmosphere at the Emirates seem like a kid’s tea party.
Arsenal need a shake up, a shock to the system; they need to see things differently and approach things from an alternative angle. Who that person is, I can’t tell you – if I could, I’d be on the Arsenal board instead of writing to you now – but the club needs to let off a grenade within its own foundations, rustle a few feathers and upset a few apple carts.
But in order to do that, we’re assuming that Stan Kroenke is a owner who cares about medals, trophies and all the cherries on top that those successes come with. I’m not so sure.