By far the greatest team the world has ever seen

At every ground in England you will hear the same song “we’re by far the greatest team, the world has ever seen.” I’ve always wanted UEFA, FIFA, or the FA to require that clubs whose supporters sing this song provide evidence in support of this claim.

By a similar token I think that Arsenal should launch a full scale investigation into statements made by Granit Xhaka,

Bellerin

Monreal

Ozil

and Mustafi

Yes, back on top guys.

Qq

43 Comments on By far the greatest team the world has ever seen

  1. “We should be able to compete at a level like a club such as Bayern Munich. I’m not saying we are there by any means but this whole journey over the past 10 years really has been with that goal in mind. It really is time now for us to turn that into sporting success. We have a certain amount of money which we’ve held in reserve. We also have new revenue streams coming on board and all of these things mean we can do some things which would excite you. We are moving into a new phase where, if we make our decisions well, we can compete with any club in the world.”

    While they’re at that, maybe investigate this statement by Gazidis from the summer of 2013.

    • It’s not as if he was lying. Compare our net spending since then to before then, it’s not recognizable. That was the summer we bought Ozil.

  2. I don’t know man.

    That Arsenal stated that they wanted to compete at the level of a team like Bayern is surely the kind of ‘statement of intent’ we want from the club. If they had mentioned any other club bar Real, Barcelona or Bayern on the international stage people would have been accusing the club of a lack of ambition. The fact that we’re not there yet is clearly disappointing but if wanting to be as good as a team like Bayern while not being at that level is some sort of crime then fair enough, but it seems like 99% of every club in the world are in the same boat whether they’ve made a public statement to that effect or not.

    What would be worse, Arsenal saying they can never and should never hope to compete at Bayerns level, or Arsenal saying that’s the level they want to reach but so far failing to be as good as arguably the best team in the world?

    • They didn’t say they ” wanted” but rather that they “should” be able to compete with the likes of Bayern- a big difference.

      It’s obvious why the haven’t too.
      They haven’t made their decisions well.

      • You can argue there have been poor decisions, and that sort of critique is never wrong. But the default position for any club in the world is not that they should be a super club on par with any of those three. Especially when you aren’t even the richest club in your country. Try 4th. (And don’t tell me about cash reserves or Forbes’ lists)

        • Arsenal under current set up and ownership will never be like Bayern but that’s not the point of this argument, and we all know the differences between the clubs which are too many to go through.

          The point , however, should be whether Arsenal have closed the gap on clubs like Bayern since Gazidis’ statement and the simple answer is no.
          In fact , the gap has gotten bigger.

          And btw, Arsenal’s unprecedented in world football cash reserves are one of the reasons the club has been mismanaged.

          • Gazidis was talking about financial investment, which usually closely approximates performance on the pitch but doesn’t guarantee success. The fact is, the financial investment has been there since he made those comments. The squad has improved. So have our positions in the table (until this year) and our cupboard has two extra pots since then too. It hasn’t all been sodom and gomorrah.

          • I don’t think we can declare mismanagement until we know why those cash reserves are kept so high. If they are there because the majority shareholder uses them as leverage, in some way benefiting him or his other assets then that isn’t so much mismanagement as it is malfeasance, since it almost defeats the purpose of Arsenal being self sufficient and building the stadium for it.

            To break into the elite is probably the toughest step for a club to take. Many go bust trying (and competing for a while) Others just rely on their owners to fund them (and sometimes they go bust because of it)

            In terms of financial potential, no club has grown organically more than Arsenal has over the past two decades. If the frustration is in not matching or hauling in those elite clubs, while for the most part staying in the bracket that we are in, we must be doing something right.

            There was a tweet a few weeks back by Johann Djourou. He said something like ‘The concept of Arsenal is different to every other PL club’. Whether we can understand, and then appreciate that is what divides our fans I think.

          • Do you honestly believe Gazidis would’ve made that statement if Arsenal were forced by Kroenke to keep over £100m cash untouched as a collateral?

            I can just imagine Wenger’s reaction the very next morning storming into Gazidis’ office asking “wtf are you trying to do to me?”

          • Am I the only one who finds it ironic that people proclaiming Arsenal are a classy club doing it ( whatever it means) the right way, are the same people accusing the club’s board members and the manager of willfully lying to the fans?

      • That, plus £100 million less in revenue annually, plus being located in England as opposed to Germany (one of thos two countries regularly produces world class player (and therefore cheap) and one rarely does). To compete with Bayern, an English team would have to earn at least £100 million more than Bayern in annual revenue just to make up for the gap in domestically trained players. Which is why no English team can compete with Bayern. Even the one that does have £100 million more in annual revenue.

  3. Exhibit A: The Monreal tweet is from April 29th; the others are all from May 6th, so that’s the one that’s not like the others.

    Exhibit B: I don’t get it. What’s the point of this post? Are you suggesting the players aren’t tweeting their own tweets by exhibiting 4 eerily similar tweets from 4 different players posted about the same time on the same day? Should we be shocked and scandalized by that? I could give two hairy rats arses.

  4. Oh and by the way. Spurs pretty much blew it in the title race. Do they lack ‘mental strength’?

    Someone came up with an intriguing observation about them. That they tend to not do as well when they play on bigger grounds (in terms of pitch size) I haven’t looked it up, but it is certainly, as I said, intriguing. Makes sense too seeing as it is harder to press and close space if there is more of it.

    Also some reports that they are looking to reduce the size of the pitch at Wembley.

    • They did blow it in the title race ,as they did a year ago, as they did in the in the FA cup semis when Conte spotted them a sixty plus minutes Costa/Hazard free pass. Both Chelsea goals ( the pen and the free kick) were typical goals conceded by chokers, not to mention losing 7 semis on the trot.

  5. At least Spurs have been in the title race the past two seasons. That they have broken their fans’ hearts so close to the goal is preferable to the growing sense of ennui AFC has dished out over the past 10 years even though financial investment has been made and players of the ilk of Sanchez and Ozil added to the mix. That we have failed to be make deep runs in the league and show and show more competitiveness in the CL is an indictment of the man in charge.

  6. You misunderstand me Tom. I wasn’t accusing anyone of anything. The fact is we don’t know what is happening inside the club. Uncertainty doesn’t scare me nor make me rush to judgments. I also don’t think Arsenal are in as bad a shape as has been made out for years, or as our current position would suggest. (Nor do I think it’s all hunky dory)

  7. I don’t think I misunderstood you actually.
    Wenger, Gazidis and Keswick have all stated that Wenger hasn’t been constrained to spend as much as he deemed necessary within the clubs own resources. Since he hasn’t, people like yourself have put forth this idea that somehow these statements might not have been true because Kroenke might be withholding funds to help finance his other ventures. Even though he’s one of the richest land owners in the US and property collaterals are just as effective as cash collaterals when applying for a loan.

    So if this were true than someone is surely lying to the fans are they not.

    • I was actually challenging that statement when I brought it up. As you may recall I had asked how exactly Kroenke might be making money from Arsenal (apart from asset appreciation) I also wasn’t thinking of Wenger when you mentioned mismanagement, but rather about the club as a whole.

      So, your argument is that Wenger doesn’t want to spend?

      • My argument has been that Arsenal haven’t maximized their spending power for reasons of loyalty to their players. Unwillingness to outbid lesser clubs for top talent at still reasonable fees e.g. Higuain to Napoli. Overcompensating players on promise of achievement instead on actual performance ( too many to list) ,thus making it impossible to move them on even though they haven’t contributed much or at all.

        • Ok I think that’s fair (even though I disagree on Higuain’s specific case)

          But I suspect that our conclusions are different in that regard. All the same I’d be very disappointed if we continued exactly the same way now after the season we’ve had.

  8. i don’t fancy arsenal’s chances today. when mourinho has had injuries like he has now, he tends to pretend to play for a while before dropping in and playing to not concede; he’s very good at that. today may be that kind of day.

  9. With the weakened squad and their lack of real commitment today, it would be a real shame if we didn’t beat them. Ramsey is doing well to keep finding space behind united’s midfield and is probably our best route to goal, and Sanchez’s passes to find him were immaculate. Their left also looks vulnerable with Mata not tracking anyone. Too many Arsenal players not sure what to do when they get into dangerous areas and we haven’t maximized the great positions in which we’ve found ourselves at times.

    • Welbeck can’t make much of passes zipped into him in tight areas; bodes ill for his prospects a starting CF for a top club.

      • I think he can develop if he can stay healthy, but yeah, he shouldn’t be first choice CF.

      • Fair play to Danny, reading my comment at halftime and upping his game.

        Also, not sure why Wenger doesn’t bring Walcott on to play CF at 2-0 up. To me that seems like his most dangerous role and yet so seldom used that way.

    • …right now, the game is very reminiscent of the game last week against tottenham except we’re the home team.

    • Its still unlikely. Liverpool have to drop points against West Ham or a probable already relegated Middlesbrough. We have to win four matches including away fixtures against Stoke and Southampton. I can’t remember the last time Arsenal won in neither of those places. Still, today it was good to beat Mourinho for a change.

      • The best part about it was how well both Mourinho and Duncan Castles both took it. Pure class, both of those chaps, and birds of a feather at that.

        Anyone want to make jokes about Wenger finally being able to retire now that he’s beaten Mourinho once? Anyone? Mourinho does!

        PS:
        We are BY FAR the greatest team the world has ever seen!

  10. Peter Schmeichel: Ramsey was the best player on the field today.

    I’m just going to leave that there… 🙂

    The player who caught my eye was Gibbs. He was terrific today, both on offence and defence. The left side looks very solid with him and Monreal working together as one of the left sided back three and wingback. I guess that the death of the creative left winger in the 442? Iwobi (and Theo) are really going to struggle to get into a team with that formation.

    His goal aside, Xhaka was good today. He looks liberated in the formation.

    Overall, though, these are two ordinary sides and first half football reflected that.

    • I think the position that Alexis was playing today is perfect for Iwobi. So if Wenger plays Alexis up top again, or if he leaves in the summer, there’s no reason Iwobi can’t flourish in this system. Theo on the other hand…

      Pleased to have this hard working Ramsey back. He was good today. Reminded me of spring 2013 Rambo: not everything’s quite coming off, but his boundless energy means he’s always involved and makes up for a lot. Still wish his use of the ball was quicker, tidier, and more progressive, but oh well, I guess you can’t have everything in a CM, right? Maybe that will come as his confidence keeps increasing.

    • Yes, Ramsey played well, the system suits him. With three defenders and a more conservatively positioned midfield partner who can also pass, he’s freed to do what he does best which is to cover every blade of grass and make runs, into the box. Playing in Wenger’s version of 4-2-3-1 which demanded both fullbacks to play in the final third with a central attacking midfielder who is next to useless in assisting with defending counterattacks, his greatest strength, runts into the box, was a very risky, often reckless gamble.

  11. If Man Ure win the Europa league, does the PL still get only 4 teams in the Champions League? I remember what happened the year Chelsea won the CL. I think Chelsea ended up 6th in the league that year

  12. I have been very critical of Ramsey’s play this season and today he put in a shift to behold. He was MOTM today.
    I hope Xhaka will be ready to go on Wednesday.
    Southampton and Stoke are now key matches if we are to get a sniff of top 4 with.

    • Yeah, as much as Ramsey deserves plaudits, I don’t think it can be overstated how much we need Xhaka in there next to him. I can’t see the Coquelin/Ramsey partnership working, ever, unless we adopt a hyper intense high press, which Wenger has never really done and is unlikely to do now. They just can’t take care of the ball well enough to pass it out of the back. Xhaka and Ramsey balance each other out (provided the latter works as hard to track back defensively as he did today), which we were all hoping/suspecting would be the case when Xhaka was signed. I’m not 100% convinced it’s “the long-term answer” to our central midfield conundrum–still would prefer us investing in someone top class this summer–but it’s the best we’ve got now, and to have to go to Southampton starting Coquelin instead (or Elneny, which he almost certainly won’t do), would really worry me.

  13. good win today. considering the players available, this formation suits this team. is it the way forward?

    i’ve always believed gibbs would flourish as a wing back and every week his performances seem to get stronger. i really appreciate the timing of his runs. alex with two assists today was also very solid. this formation absolutely suits aaron ramsey. arsenal still need a center forward. lacazette might look good leading this line. we’ll see.

    pfo, completely agree that iwobi could flourish in the role that alexis plays. coquelin is being dismissed but i don’t think it’s fair. his long ball and shot are awful but he can link play as well as anyone and is good enough on the ball to go by defenders; i think he’d do fine. while ramsey looked good in that central role today, could chamberlain perhaps do better? ramsey’s runs probably give him a slight nod. could hector have a future in that wingback role while alex moves central? chamberlain seems to be the better wing back. we’ll see.

    an option that could be legitimately considered is theo walcott in the position that ozil is playing. i truly believe arsenal could see theo at his best here but, like wenger has done before, he plays favorites (ozil) to the detriment of the team. ditto for joel campbell. if arsenal could secure £50 million for ozil, i’d take it. come on, juventus. i also believe calum chambers would shine in this back three. without getting overly excited over a result against an understrength manchester united, this formation looks like the way forward. we’ll see.

    • …also, make alexis sanchez the highest paid player in the premier league. the guy is a winner and deserves to get paid.

    • also, i feel so bad for anthony martial. watching his demise, it’s eerie how much he reminds me of henry at juventus. you know what this kid is capable of and he’s punching so far below his weight, playing with zero confidence. could arsenal acquire him for £25-30 million to help man united buy griezmann? i think they’d take the money. it would be foolish because griezmann probably won’t flourish in that system but arsenal need a center forward and welbeck has never proven he can do it at an elite level. martial has. i’d prefer lukaku but he’s so expensive. we’ll see how the summer goes.

      • Mourinho would never agree to sell Martial to us. He didn’t even want to sell Cech to us even though he was rotting on the bench – but finally caved because of Cech’s tenure. There is no way he will agree to sell a young, upcoming striker to us. The hierarchy at United usually doesn’t bypass the manager when it comes to transfer dealings.

        I do agree we may be able to get more out of Martial that United has so far – and it probably isn’t going to get better for him with Jose in charge.

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