The Wenger era could be set to draw to a catastrophic end, after last night’s demoralising 5-1 thrashing from Bayern Munich intensified the pressure on Arsenal.
Arsenal conceded four goals in the second half, after ending the first half level at the home of the German champions. The performance was dismal and several top players failed to deliver in arguably the most important game of their season.
Wenger looked disenchanted and mentally drained in the dug-out as he watched his team fall to yet another heavy defeat to the Bavarians. His achievements with Arsenal will remain engraved in the club’s history but a lack of progression has led to frustration from the club’s supporters.
The gunners have been unable to add to their three Premier League titles since the season of the “invincibles” in the 2003/04 season. They also endured a 10-year wait for a major trophy, which was ended by back-to-back FA Cups in 2014 and 2015.
This relieved Arsenal supporters and inspired them to believe this was the perfect platform to progress and achieve future success. Unfortunately, they’ve failed to capitalize on their two FA Cup triumphs and find themselves falling behind in yet another title race. Their evident frustration seen on their own Arsenal Fan Channel.
Arsenal’s failure to clinch the league title over Leicester City last provoked another debate on whether Wenger is capable of leading Arsenal. The latest dilemma with the gunners falling 10 points behind Premier League table toppers Chelsea, and an increasing likelihood of them being eliminated from the Champions League has increased the pressure on the Frenchman.
The gunners are only one point clear of fifth place Liverpool and two points clear of sixth place Manchester United. They also still have to face Liverpool, Manchester City, Tottenham Hotspur, Manchester United and Everton in their remaining 13 league fixtures.
Although there are several big fixtures still to play for Arsenal, facing teams struggling for relegation is also going to prove to be a challenge. Manchester United are unbeaten in their last 16 Premier League games, whereas Arsenal have lost four of their last ten in the league. This is extremely concerning for Arsene Wenger and they will need to improve their form towards the end of the season to guarantee Champions League football for next season.
Time for Wenger to step down?
It’s a question which is being asked worldwide but it’s been on the cards for the past few seasons. Wenger has guaranteed consistency but his recent lack of silverware and success has frustrated supporters, who feel the club are seriously lacking quality and ambition.
Season after season since winning the Premier League in 2004, they’ve seen top players leave such as Robin Van Persie, Cesc Fabregas, Ashley Cole and Samir Nasri leave the club. However, they’ve regularly been unable to find adequate replacements and have suffered as a consequence.
Wenger has previously been heavily criticised for his failure to secure various big-money signings. Despite bringing in Shkodran Mustafi, Mezut Ozil, Alexis Sanchez and Olivier Giroud in recent years.
The style of play is also outdated and their approach to the game is seriously predictable and definitely beatable. They’ve failed to capitalize on momentum and have suffered poor runs of form during the past 13 seasons, which have let them down in the title race.
Wenger has failed to adapt to the changes of the English game, whereas Sir Alex Ferguson continuously made changes to his style, approach and team over the years. This is the difference between the two managers, Ferguson continuously looked towards future success, whereas Wenger is still living in the past.
Despite this, the rapid downfall that Manchester United suffered following the retirement of Ferguson could repeat itself at Arsenal. Wenger joined Arsenal in 1996 and has placed them in such a position, which you could say is now taken for granted. He’s provided success in the past but now consistently finishes in a European spot.
It could be possible that Arsenal may suffer ramifications when Wenger leaves the club. They have been linked with the likes of Eddie Howe and Diego Simeone and looking to the future is important due to Wenger’s age. Regardless of this, the next managerial appointment must be planned to suit the club’s future ambitions and aims.
Lack of match winners in the team
Arsenal seriously lack match winning players, what I mean by this is… If the team are one-goal behind, how many players have the capability to grab the game by the scruff of the neck and turn it around? Not many!
Alexis Sanchez was head and shoulder above any other player on that pitch yesterday evening. Mezut Ozil was lethargic, lazy and static throughout, Shkodran Mustafi was clueless and Kieran Gibbs was truly out of his depth.
Laurent Koscielny’s premature departure due to injury proved to be the turning point. The score was level when the Frenchman was forced off and Arsenal slumped to an embarrassing 5-1 defeat.
Hector Bellerin, Mezut Ozil, Theo Walcott and Olivier Giroud are all praised when Arsenal are playing well. However, when the team are struggling, they may as well pack their bags and leave because they are almost invisible.
It was incredibly difficult to watch the game yesterday, due to the lack of quality and effort. The Arsenal supporters travelled to Munich, in hope of a result, however, they weren’t even granted a hearted performance, instead it was heartless.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has failed to reach his potential and there’s only so long that his youth can be a reasonable excuse for his lack of quality. Instead now, it’s a lack of development, he’s 23-years-old and is no longer a promising young talent.