Well, as if they wasn’t beforehand, Arsenal were finally put out of their (mathematical) title-chasing misery last weekend. A 0-0 draw with relegation-threatened Sunderland followed an uninspiring 2-0 win against the beach dwellers of West Bromwich Albion and a drab 1-1 draw against one of the worst Premier League sides of this calendar year, Crystal Palace.
Despite them being one of the most entertaining sides in the world when at their best, the majority of Arsenal fans haven't been looking forward to any of their last few matches, such is the tediousness of this team. This was made clear by the number of empty seats at the Emirates Stadium during their 2-0 win over the Baggies.
Wenger has come out more than once and said that Arsenal have ‘done their job’ having done the double over league leaders Leicester City. Well, not really, Arsene.
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Leicester and Tottenham Hotspur haven’t lost more than six (the most number of games a team can feasibly lose in a 38 game season should they want to win the league) or lose to Swansea City and West Brom like you have.
West Ham United did the double over his side and eventual champions Manchester United in the 2006-07 season, but only survived relegation on the last day of the campaign, so it doesn’t matter that Arsenal have the best record against the top six this season – it didn’t do West Ham much good did it?
Wenger’s side have lost more games and dropped more points than Leicester and Tottenham – simple. It’s not as if they’ve even pushed whoever wins it to the wire having lost seven. Someone should remind Wenger that it is not a two-game season. The Frenchman went on to say ‘‘people should look at other teams.’’
How can he say that when, with three games left of the season to play, his team lie 12 points behind a club that very nearly got relegated last season? His entire philosophy and reasoning for clubs like Chelsea and Manchester City overtaking his side from the mid-noughties have been shot to bits now that a team made up of free transfers, journeymen and rejects are on the verge of a league title without spending the hundreds of millions of pounds that The Blues and City did.
Obviously, The Gunners’ scouting system isn’t good enough. Either that or Wenger is lying or deluded. To not have players join you for personal reasons is one thing, but to say that the players they need are not out there is quite another. They are out there; as proved by the discoveries of the likes of Dele Alli and N’Golo Kante.
Last summer Arsenal’s scouts and/or Wenger were not astute enough to pick out any players out of thousands worldwide, so have tried to rectify these issues by poaching Leicester’s scout Ben Wrigglesworth back in February.
We will see not the fruits of this relationship for another season or two yet, but whether it was bringing in the players needed to push Arsenal that little bit further in order to win a championship this season or having the current bunch do so, the club have not done their job, whichever way Wenger chooses to view it.
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