Can Arsenal Tolerate the Obstinate Manager Arsene Wenger Anymore?

Robin SAnalyst IMarch 23, 2011

LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 30:  Arsene Wenger the Arsenal manager looks on during the FA Cup sponsored by E.ON fourth round match between Arsenal and Huddersfield Town at The Emirates Stadium on January 30, 2011 in London, England.  (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)
Clive Mason/Getty Images

How long can Arsenal fans be patient and show faith in their beleaguered manager Arsene Wenger?

The Frenchman is a great believer in his ideology. A man of the stature of Wenger should never have come under so much pressure considering the way he has revolutionised Arsenal.

From diet to football to stadium, Wenger has managed to stamp his unique mark on Arsenal FC. Long gone are the days of boring Arsenal, now Arsenal fans are treated to free-flowing, splendid football all in the comfort of a state-of-the-art stadium courtesy of the great man Wenger.

That development also saw a tremendous escalation in revenue earned from match-days. No one hardly complained as long as Arsenal played top-notch football, but the lack of trophies gradually heaped pressure on Wenger and now a section of fans seemingly want to pull the curtains on the Wenger era.

In this age and day of competition and impatience, Arsenal patiently allotted Wenger his own time which is a commendable thing in itself. However, is Wenger living on borrowed time?

As long as the business side is concerned, the Frenchman is the best one could get but football is not all about business. The very existence of a club is based on the number of fans. A club can't survive without a loyal bunch of supporters.

Arsenal being one of the most successful clubs in the history of the English top-tier, commands a large fanbase worldwide. It automatically becomes the responsibility of the club to appease the faithful followers and attract even more.

Winning silverware and paying heed to the needs and views of the fans is imperative for the harmonious functioning of the club. It's only natural to feel let down and betrayed when one is neglected unceremoniously for a considerable duration of time.

That's what exactly has happened with Wenger. He has been turning a deaf ear to the fans. To be more precise, his conceited nature never allowed him to welcome the demands, rather requests, of the rooters.

Wenger has done a lot for the betterment of Arsenal but his failings and obstinacy shouldn't fall behind the veneer of his youth development, shrewdness and business acumen.

When it concerns Wenger, it's absolutely an arduous task to draw the fine line between being thrifty and plain cheap; one may wonder if at all there exists one. It's also an open secret that Wenger is dearly known as the modern-day Scrooge amongst the rival fans. That title is something that Wenger has earned through diligent effort; so it's hard to contradict.

Wenger in the past has unearthed quite a few top talents for paltry sums and turned them into world beaters under his peerless tutelage. However, it's not always possible to scout a Nicolas Anelka or Cesc Fabregas at a young age and build a self-sustaining Youth Academy to meet all the needs of the club.

That's where the transfer window comes handy which offers the manager a chance to complement his squad with the missing pieces. At times that would mean spending a bit more than you would have otherwise, but it's worth the money in the long run.

A manager mustn't be content with a sub-standard team insisting that he's waiting for the right players to graduate from the academy rather than integrating proven players from elsewhere. Wenger hasn't done it and that's one of the main reasons why he has been struggling.

Wenger's baffling 'accomplishment' of going trophy-less for five years and counting underlines his tenacious unwillingness to stray even one bit from his ideology.

The successive failures has also forced him to value the Carling Cup which had never even existed in the lexicon of Wenger at one point. He took a U-turn this season and gave due respect to the 'Mickey Mouse Cup'; however, his team tantalizingly faltered on the final step.

Thereafter, Arsenal were also knocked out of the FA Cup and the Champions League. Arsenal were actually good enough to win neither of them. The only ray of hope left is in the Premier League, but a rather dim one at that. That's partly down to Wenger's negligence and easy-going attitude. In recent years, Arsenal's soft spot at the heart of the defence and in between the posts had been exposed quite pitiably.

As a result, it was widely expected that Wenger would make the requisite signings in the summer to plug the pothole, yet Wenger could only manage two mediocre defensive reinforcements when he really should have done what the situation demanded.

His typical obstinacy and thrift took the front seat thereby diminishing Arsenal's chances of success. Arsenal, for yet another season, showcased their defensive frailties by conceding goofy goals which they could have avoided with a sturdier defence.

Arsenal's goalkeeping situation certainly improved with the resurgence of Lukasz Fabianski and with the emergence of Wojceih Szczesny. However, Manuel Almunia also made full use of his limited opportunities to dent Arsenal's title ambitions with his calamitous glove work.

Nevertheless, Arsenal still have a great chance of winning the League only if they could string together consistency and solidity in the final nine games, although with Almunia in goal the subject of reliability never exists.

It isn't impossible but certainly looks unlikely given the shambolic nature of Wenger's defence. The gaffer is clearly under pressure and rightly so. He hasn't done enough in recent seasons to remain invulnerable anymore.

It's also noteworthy that his past glories have aided him in convincing the fans that he's on the path to success, which has eluded him since the transition from the Highbury to the Emirates. If Wenger fails once again, then he would sweat hard to rest on his past laurels.


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