So...well...here we go again? It looks that way doesn’t it? Empty handed, once again, from a great position, once again.
The most galling aspect of the greatest of all recent anti-climaxes is the predictability of it in the eyes of our detractors. As draw following draw turned into defeat following draw, the heads were down and dumbstruck. Our chirpy little friends from down Seven Sisters Road were giving a knowing smile, accompanied with a mischievous giggle – Europa League Thursdays are good enough for some people.
It wasn’t just them though, it was everyone. Deep down it was you too, wasn’t it? Maybe this year it was deeper than usual but the final third of a Premier League season has become a familiar deterioration for Arsenal fans’ collective belief. When you have 13-12 games left and winning them all wins you the league you are most definitely close to winning it, but close just isn’t good enough anymore.
The calls for spending have grown steadily and Arsene has confirmed he will be more active this year than he has in recent history, but he also told us not to expect huge spending. Those words from the gaffer being welcome but also a little familiar to us, we won’t be surprised if he’s again quoted talking about value for money as the close of the transfer window approaches.
If any fans actually expect huge spending they are delusional to a severe degree – the Man City and Chelsea inspired inflated transfer climate will put paid to any moneybags behaviour.
Times of despair bring irrational thoughts and fans must try to swerve these; just remember that Arsenal were in a position where they had the destination of the title in their own hands at one point.
This means there is a lot more right than there is wrong and very few signings and changes are needed, maybe a couple of small tactical tweaks and two or three experienced new faces. The key to success is small – like a locker key, not one of those big rusty iron ones that open medieval doors.
The key here is patience. It may be wearing thin but that is the main reason Arsenal are in a relatively good position financially, always in the Champions’ League and have done so without spending hundreds of millions in transfer fees.
The foundations are being laid for a secure and successful future, while also continually putting us in positions where we feel like the team could win something and that is unheard of in football today.
Disclaimer: The views in this article are that of the writer and may not replicate those of the Professional Footballers' Association.