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Wenger Proves ‘You Can’t Win Anything With Kids’
Footytubeblog (Blog) 5 years ago
It’s been a testing start to the season for Arsene Wenger hasn’t it? Scratch that it’s been a gruelling six years for the Arsenal boss with the failure to go the whole hog and actually win a trophy seeing the Frenchman crumble under the pressure and totally disregard his policy on buying players.

Last week’s deadline day splurge saw Wenger splash out on a number of players that didn’t conform to his usual targets. He bought Mikel Arteta for £10 million despite the Spaniard being 29-years-old, Werder Bremen’s 26-year-old defender Per Mertesaker and loaned Yossi Benayoun from Chelsea despite the Israeli being the wrong side of 30.
Considering his penchant for plucking youngsters from youth teams around the world and endeavouring to turn them into world-beaters - has he finally admitted defeat and proved that you won’t win anything with kids?

Unfortunately for Gunners fans Wenger demonstrated that putting every last ounce of faith into a team of young players isn’t the way forward. Whilst I admire the Frenchman’s philosophy and the fact he has nurtured some of the best young players in the world at this current time building a team full of them is the wrong way to go about winning major competitions. Arsenal has suffered ever since the invincibles’ side disbanded and Wenger decided that spending money wasn’t viable at a time when transfer fees and wages were starting to rise into astronomical boundaries.

But his concern with building a team of his own making along with being unflinchingly prudent has been to the detriment of Arsenal’s challenge. It’s no secret that he’d refuse to hand out long-term contracts to players over 30 and signing those who were coming towards that age range was a rarity. At first the football and the team looked brilliant with Cesc Fabregas leading the charge with a side full of fresh faced youngsters who were oozing enthusiasm and desperate to make an impression.

The future looked bright but the heights Wenger’s young side were prophesized to meet were never actually reached. The team lacked experience and a leader, someone with a little bit of knowhow who could direct these kids and keep their chins up when things went south. The dressing room didn’t have that seasoned edge and when things turned sour there was no one there to provide inspiration. Wenger was too stubborn to change his ways and too proud to admit that his philosophy was flawed. On the field things went downhill and he’s now been forced to throw in the towel. The experiment failed and with his tail firmly between his legs Wenger has now been backed into the corner. Luckily for Arsenal fans he’s come out fighting with his chequebook firmly in hand. 

The 8-2 defeat to Manchester United in their last game surely must have been the kick up the backside that he needed to finally realise that his approach has failed. Somewhere in London Alan Hansen will be rubbing his hands gleefully and telling all around him ‘I told you so’.

This blog does not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of footytube or its partners.
Dtouch (Ajax) 5 years ago
Terrible writing use a comma the article is full of run-ons and ambigious structure I had to read passages twice and piece it together myself come on!
Peteko 5 years ago
Actually, you could use some fullstops yourself.    
Labelle (Arsenal) 5 years ago
Hahaha brilliant!
Jeroen (Barcelona) 5 years ago
Typical case of the pot blaming the kettle for looking black here
Araz (Queens Park Rangers) 5 years ago
Interesting article but a few things to point out here....

Firstly the average age of the Man United team that thrashed Arsenal was actually at 23 years, younger than the team that they hammered. And in that team were numerous players who had hardly ever stepped on a football pitch together so arsenal should have had an advantage in that department too. So I really don't think Arsenal's issue is with playing youngsters, Fergie has already proven many times over that Alan Hansen's "you can't win anything with kids" comment is total nonsense, you can and he has, and will again this season.

The difference seems to be in what kids you buy, how you develop them, and what you do when they're not kids any more.

For Wenger it just seems to be an endless conveyer belt of good looking young players who share one thing in common, they rarely seem to live up to the full potential and expectation that surrounds them.

Now Fergie has had his fair share of dodgy buys and sells, young and old, but he seems much more ready than Wenger to admit a mistake, and off load players who look ok, but aren't going to be title winners or "brand United" players.

In fact the Premier League teams outside the top 4 are stuffed with Fergie cast offs who are easily good enough to play in this league, but not good enough to deliver league titles and that's the distinction Fergie makes much more quickly and effectively than Arsene.

Wenger on the other hand clings on to the same type of player (eg. Bendtner) in the vain hope that he will eventually be able to satisfy his ego and tell the world "see I told you he'd be good", and it is that stubbornness that has driven his transfer policy and his failure over the last 7 years.

The problem with this mentality is that whilst Wenger is constantly waiting for 5 years down the line when he can do his I told you so dance for a brief moment, Fergie is ruthlessly cutting off people who don't make the grade much sooner than his counter part, and walking off with all the silver now by not being afraid yo pay good money, for exceptional players (eg. Young) and getting rid of OK ones.

And the last problem for Wenger is that when he does find the occasional gem that he polishes and turns in to a world beater, like Fabregas for example, the lack of trophies created by all that waiting around to find out if Arman Traore will really be any good means gems eventually depart for new homes and so the cycle of Arsenal disappointment and heart break begins again with more youngsters who may one day be world beaters but on whom a decision won't be made until it's way too late and another 5 years have gone by.

So all in all I think Wenger has done absolutely the right thing by bringing in mature, established players who have already proven they can cut it at the top level and by starting to bee more ruthless in getting rid of bad rubbish like Bendtner.

His main failing is that he didn't make this a part of his philosophy a long time ago.

Come Arsene leave your ego behind, there is no shame at all in signing a player who's already good, or that at least one of us have ever heard of before he joined your club.
Peteko 5 years ago
Excellent take
FootyRulz (Chelsea) 5 years ago
Great post, fully summarizes the problem with Wenger and his "I'm never wrong" attitude
BagiK (FC Seoul) 5 years ago
I think Wenger is smarter than you give him credit for. Also take into account United and the other big clubs would kill to be in Arsenal's financial position
Tanmay (Footytube Moderator) 5 years ago
Great post. Also I wonder if the "cunter part" slip up was on purpose
Araz (Queens Park Rangers) 5 years ago
LOL. I think it was what you call a Freudian Slip!
Zhudayong (Barcelona) 5 years ago
It's simple! There's NO way I could've said it any better than Araz. But I would love to have a go of my own.

It's a false idea that ''you can't win anything with kids''. Plus I strongly believe people are now saying it mainly because Wenger has failed. But Wenger's failure isn't really based on his desire to build his team around youngsters. In fact, as Araz said so well, his failure is based on his stubbornness to admit when he's wrong and correct his mistakes. And his mistakes are pure and simple: 1- Failing to sign a couple of experienced players that would add that gem youngsters lack at the bigger stages. 2- Failing to offload non-winners material because you can't/won't admit signing them was a mistake. 3- Failing to keep his best set of players from leaving.

When paying close attention to Wenger, one could easily realize the man's hope are way too over the top. Sometimes a man needs to be pragmatic and objective. And not hold on too tight on ideas you are so desperate to prove to everyone that criticized your approach that you were right all along.
And presenting the ideas that because other clubs had had long spells of trophy drought, therefore, we are allowed (or it shouldn't be a big deal) to go on our own run of trophy drought. True, what goes up comes down eventually. BUT, if there's a way to make sure one never comes down (or at least stay there longer than anyone has ever done) then why not go for it. And what I mean here is Wenger truly has the potential to make the right choices and balanced his team in a way that would certainly enable his team to reach its goals.

Regarding his change of heart to now sign older and more experienced players, I think it's a very wise decision. Plus, having a couple of experienced players won't necessarily affect the average age of the team. BUT as far as Arsenal's new signings are concerned, I personally have a hard time believing their collection of new players are the right ones for the job. Hopefully am wrong
Riajz (Manchester United) 5 years ago
This is a battle of who writes the best, give the lad a break and at least grasp his idea.    Let's construct and not destroy.
Irishgray (Arsenal) 5 years ago
Wow! Now this really had me chuckling! You must have been sat right beside Alan Hansen when you where writing this, as it smacks of his smugness. You say Arsenal have not won anything because they did not have players with experience. A hell of a statement. Arshavin is not experienced then? Captain of Russia counts for nothing? Sagna, one of the best right backs in the EPL, if not Europe? Rosicky? Hell even Cesc, though "young" had more experience than most a few years older then him! RVP, again you dismiss him I suppose. Until recently Gallas, Campbell who were both massively experienced. Vermaelen, again I suppose you would dismiss his contribution in his first year which was pretty impressive by anyones standards. (Fair enough on his second year ) We had other experienced players but the problem was they where, well, not quite up to standard? Bendtner, Almunia, Denilson and a few more besides. That was the real issue, not the "youngsters" as you and Hansen would claim. Almunia and co. Had moments of brilliance but could never do it week in, week out and on that I agree there is a huge difference between SAF and AW. But please do not try and make it as simple as what Hansen and his followers would like us all to believe.

We had experienced players mixed in with the youngsters, but the problem was they were not of a high enough standard and due to a new stadium we were never in a position to splash out on true quality. Nasri I feel let us down but then I must admit he was well within his rights. Cesc we all knew wanted to go home. Clichy served us well and I wish him nothing but the best. The new signings I hope can fill the gap left by those who departed but I fear we will be well short for anything other than one of the Cups. Pity
Dicicco8 (Liverpool) 5 years ago
And what about dortmund. A team of youngsters if there ever was one
Jeroen (Barcelona) 5 years ago
We do have an experienced goalkeeper and captain (Weidenfeller), striker (Barrios) and a coach who keeps all players in check.

But, you definitely have a point: most of our youngsters are mature and smart. Hummels and Subo not only have great defensive qualities and impressive physique, but they also radiate confidence in the team the way elder players usually do, despite being only 22
Jonahmulaw (Arsenal) 5 years ago
I remember about two years ago writing a letter to arsenal football club, hopping to get a respond. I must be joking or I just don't know how the system works. I sent a letter with my cv hoping to get a tryout for the reserve team so can work my way up to the main team. And somehow someway help the team. I'm lmao right now just thinking how dumb of an idia it was. Because there is no way that anyone would notice. Lol well arsenal hasn't been the same since 2006. But hey worse things happen in life than just not winning a cup, like losing the ones you love
Kimaway17 (Liverpool) 5 years ago
I agree with Alan Hansen. The reason why Arsenal were not doing that great is because in the whole squad they had no leader what so ever. They had no experiance head. It has nothing with what youngsters you buy but the team atmosphere. At United first you have a old wise manager in Sir Alex. Then you have some great experiance players in Ryan Giggs Rio Ferdinand and even Vidic to guid the younger players. Think about it. Chris Smalling Johnny Evans and Phil Jones have Rio Vidic to pass on great advice to the youngesters while Arsenal do not have that. Now with Arsenal getting some experiance players in maybe they might influence the younger players. So I think it has to do with guidance withing the team!
Vixstur (Arsenal) 5 years ago
What he has done for Arsenal Football Club is legendary. And true fans will always be grateful and never forget him.

In Arsene we Trust!
Kimaway17 (Liverpool) 5 years ago
I have to agree with that. But it's gonna' take a while b4 you can get back to those heights :/
BagiK (FC Seoul) 5 years ago
It reminds me of some clubs in the lower tier. The fans demand that they get promoted to a higher tier and the f*****g club falls into dept and dies because idiots forced something stupid. Stupid fans are deadly. Top 4 for a decade straight isn't bad at all. Also take into account Arsenal is probably in the best financial position in the Premier League. Let's prey to god the owners don't do something stupid
FootyRulz (Chelsea) 5 years ago
I don't actually think it was because there wasn't enough experience in the squad but more likely the lack of quality players, players that would be able to consistently put on match-wining performances. And looking at the squad now, I wouldn't say there are many in Arsenal's squad
[account-removed] 5 years ago
Arteta is simply the best signing arsene has done in the past two years people like nasri were good but left teh team when they wre needed most, i'd have arteta in my team any day overnasri and fabregas ul see his worth as the season goes on
LumpOfCelery (Chelsea) 5 years ago
Okay, Arteta will be loyal and he is underrated but I wouldnt choose him over Fabregas or Nasri, These are 2 of the best midfielders in the world
Goofy30koeln 5 years ago
Why are the articles of this blog always about Arsenal London?
[account-removed] 5 years ago
This site is ran by english people lol
Goofy30koeln 5 years ago
Yes maybe. I have learnt a lot about the EPL from this blog and the articles are well written. But I think they should write more articles about other premier league clubs, La Liga, Seria A and Bundesliga as well
Peteko 5 years ago
Goofy30koeln, I would love to know more about Bundesliga. I think the people who run this site would love it too.

Footy members should step up and offer contribution with their writings and knowledge. You can start a thread anytime at the Terrace or if you have something analytic and intelligent to say start it in the Stands. If it fits the requirements and it generates interest, it is very possible that it will be "upgraded" as a blog. I have seen it happen
JulioFC (Inter Milan) 5 years ago
I agree with all of you. I find this site very informative when it comes to the EPL but, most of the top teams come from outside of England. Everytime there's an article about the Bundesliga it's always about "Typical Germans. " If It's about La Liga, it's always Real Madrid or Barcelona. And if it's about the Serie A, it's always how Italian soccer is declining. The last time I checked, most of the "best" players in the world come from outside of England, let alone those who have won the Ballon D'Or or Fifa player of the year award. Just my 2 cents. Lol
Araz (Queens Park Rangers) 5 years ago
I've read a lot of good responses to this thread, just one objection. Yes Arsenal may be in a good financial situation, but what good as that to anyone?

Depends on how you take football, as far as I'm concerned owning a football club is about something that goes much deeper than business and money. But what good is a rich team that wins nothing? No good at all.

Yes Arsenal's finances are good, but football is about trophies and glory not spread sheets and bank managers!

Kimaway17 (Liverpool) 5 years ago
You have a good point right there. And Arsenal need to win trophy. These players are good but will not win major trophies but maybe league cup which just be a starts
FootyRulz (Chelsea) 5 years ago
They also have to make good use of the money available to them and spend it on quality players capable of winning championships
Kimaway17 (Liverpool) 5 years ago
Yes. Some1 really really amazing
TheBarcaShow (Footytube Staff) 5 years ago
I think the finances are important but they should have a balance between success and rewarding the fans.

Also a very overlooked point is that if he doesn't spend enough money on this team than once Champions League football slips out of their fingers they can very well lose a large chunk financially
HangTime (Chelsea) 5 years ago
Wrenger should become a scout or a youth developer whatever. If I own a club, I'll hire him as a scout or a manager to manage my youth team. Not a manager to manage the first team. If I want to make money only, I'll hire him as a manager. If I want trophies, I'll fire him as a manager already
Smiffy7 (Manchester United) 5 years ago
I'm not Wenger's biggest fan but I have to admit that he has had his arsenal teams playing some of the best football to watch over the years.
My biggest criticism is their final third play, They play great 1-2 touch football to get themselves in a great attacking positions and then the pace and cutting edge of the passing seems to disappear. After the 8-2 loss to united he finally did what every Arsenal fan wanted, and that was to go out and buy some players.
But I can't figure out why he didn't buy an out and out goal scorer.... Someone who isn't afraid to have a go from the edge of the area. Van Persie is class but he can't do it all by himself...

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