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Gazidis goes from buffer to lightning conductor


I WAS on an aeroplane for this one so have only seen the highlights. No bad thing from the sound of it.

It is all very disappointing, through frankly not greatly surprising and from the sounds of it many of the issues and arguments I’ve rehearsed here in recent weeks were present again.

What I think interesting is the Gazidis issue. A fortnight ago after the defeat at Norwich I said:

“Arguing about quality of player is one thing, arguing about the fact a player doesn’t even exist is something else and frankly quite galling when you see our Chief Executive on £2 million a year. If that seems like a cheap shot, well it is the kind of cheap shot that comes with a 24% pay rise.”

Yesterday the away fans put it a little more succinctly, asking: “Ivan Gazidis – what the **** do you do?”

His appointment three years ago was one that was welcomed by many, not least those unhappy with the regime as was. He was the outsider who talked a good game, who appeared unwilling to settle for mediocrity and who would not accept things carrying on as they were.

The problem now is that our ticket prices are still increasing, we’re still selling our best players, we’re still not replacing them and we still don’t appear particularly bothered about how we’re doing. The Chairman insists that despite seven barren years the manager remains under no pressure to deliver trophies and the manager still talks of the only two trophies we have a hope of winning with complete contempt.

And in among this the man who was meant to kick some butt is now best known for his enormous increase in salary on the back of we don’t know quite what exactly.

In the battle to keep the fans onside, he’s gone from being an asset to a burden.

23 Responses to “Gazidis goes from buffer to lightning conductor”

  1. James says:

    Gazidis has been a grave disappointment, but has little choice than to publicly support the man who appointed him – Wenger! Wenger must take 90% of the blame as he has all the power, buys all the players, sells all the players, sets the salaries, does tactics/motivating etc. in all of which he has failed dismally.

  2. Elvis says:

    Yeah, I remember those days when an Arsenal v Man United game was filled with nervous tension and it was genuinely hard to pick a winner before the game. Now, there is no feeling in the pit of the stomach, I don’t even watch the stream and it’s just a question of how many we will lose by.

    As for Ivan Gazidis, he’s a slick PR man but it’s always ‘jam tomorrow’ from the board and he has delivered precisely nothing that the fans care about.

    From the boardroom, to the management to the training ground to competitive action on the pitch, Arsenal Football Cub looks like an organisation that has forgotten that its mission is to fight win trophies. The executives, the manager, the support staff and the squad need to be saying loud and clear that nothing else -nothing- is acceptable. Second-best is as good as last. End of.

  3. stan says:

    The buck stops with AW. i am not one to criticize, but this is getting to the point of shame on an illustrous and prestigous club like Arsenal. The man is too freaking rigid and it’s almost as if he abhors change. AW is still doing the same things that helped him win the league ten years ago though the landscape has changed tremendously. How do you explain selling your best players every year and continously replacing them with inferior players. How do you explain playing the same style when everyone in the league have figured out how to stop you. why sign rubbish players and put them on huge salaries while refusing to reward your performing players. This is just the defintion of insanity; doing the same things and expecting a different outcome. the complacency at Arsenal is unreal!!!

  4. Bob says:

    Arsenal are suffering from Clough syndrome. 100% Wenger is responsible.

  5. Larry says:

    Congragultions Mr wenger you have just accomplished what nobody else has done to me in 55 years of watching Arsenal and that is NOT TO CARE

  6. david nigeria says:

    Gazidis told fans that he’s first job is to keep fabregas,rvp and walcot.then now all have gone even walcot.shame to my great club wen some year back i watch with joy that will are going to win great player like viera,pires,henry,bergkamp,cole,adams,keown,lauren,wiltord,even anelka.

  7. Giles says:

    The biggest mistake arsenal have made in the last 10 years was to sack David Dean from the board and all the problems since have stemed from that. David Dein was an Arsenal man through and through and he could see how football was going with the spending power of other clubs becoming more omportant, that is why he back Usmanov to take over the club. Since then arsene has to much power, the board don’t mind that we have not won silverwear as the club is making a profit through high ticket prices and player transfers. Gazidis will tell the fans anything that will placate them as he thinks we are stupid. Wenger has bought a lot of flops in the past few years and not sold a number of fringe players that he should have due to high wages but sold are best players. Would this have happened if Daved Dein was at the club. I don’t think so, the flops would have been sold and we would have kept are best player and added to them. Would Dein have let are best players contracts go into their last year, it didn’t happen on his watch. the board must grovel and bring back David Dein.

  8. mian fahim says:

    Abraham Lincoln once said “you can fool some people all the time but you cannot fool all the people all the time.” that is what Ivan Gizidis has done to us fans. he has been fooling us for the past few years about a better future and things are going worse every season. i live in Asia and desperately wait all day long to watch Arsenal play, and the form they show up is pathetic- a complete waste of my time. either they should accept that we are now a mid-table club or start rubbing shoulders with the best in a good way. to them our feelings are just business and money. now i think RVP was right to leave the club caz he knew he was going no where with this club. even if he’s unable to win a trophy with United at least he will die trying. not like us sucking the blood of the fans. i think the fans should boycott by not going to the matches so the management can be taught a lesson (but it’s not gonna happen caz we are still the bunch of people who could be fooled all the time).

  9. Breezy says:

    @ Giles I agree 100%with your comment. I know many gooners don’t have the time of day for Dein after he sold his shares to Usmanov and I would either except that I’ve seen this all before with rugby team down here in SA where they got rid of the brains of the operation which coincided with the decline in what was once the best run rugby union in the world at the time. That same union is facing backrupcy today. Now I’m not saying that we will go te same way, but the similarities are uncanny it’s not even funny.

    To me Dein was the one person on the Arsenal board that actually had any foresight. If I remember correctly it was Dein who introduced Kroenke to the board, who rejected the idea and kicked him out, it took that same board another 5+ years to finally understand that they needed Kroenke and allow him on the board.

    And that is the problem for us at moment this board and Arsene are not proactive but rather wait for things to happen before action is taken and as a result we’re went from champions and contenders to also rans.

  10. JP says:

    The Dein family have the main benficiaries of the player exodus … huge fees as agents !!

  11. PD says:

    I for one don’t have a huge problem with Wenger’s comments about what our priorities are. i.e. 1 – winning the league, 2 – winning the CL, 3 – CL qualification, 4 – FA Cup & 5- League Cup. It makes sense in theory.
    What I have do have a problem with however is that season after season, he says this while yet starting each season with a squad that has no hope whatsoever of acheiving 1 or 2, and yet at the same time treating 4 & 5 with contempt. So basically CL qualification is our only target each season.
    It’s completely unacceptable.

    It’s only a matter of time til the first ‘Wenger out’ banners at the Emirates. It will be sad but even more sadly, it’s long overdue. I’ll repeat what I’ve said many times on here : the end of the 2010-2011 season was his last chance to walk away & get the amicable parting his past achievements deserved. We’re on (& have been for a while) a downward spiral marking the sad & inevitably acrimonius end of a great managerial career. There’s only one way this is going to end. The question is does Gazidis or anyone else on the Board have the balls to end it quickly ? Arsenal’s fans are more polarised at this moment more than I’ve ever known them to be. I’ve never seen such arguments between Gooners before. It’s not just online strangers any more either. It’s so desperately sad. This needs to end soon for everyone’s sake. The fans are miserable, the players look like they’ve given up. The manager himself looks a beaten man. (has anyone ever heard him before even acknowledging that the possession stats are basically bullshit ? he normally blatantly uses them to hide the team’s deficiencies)
    For the love of God Arsene, please, please just go.

  12. slc gunner says:

    PD – interesting to read Arsene’s comments alright. I feel that sums us up recently: lots of huff and puff, and mostly sidewards and backwards possession. Nobody seems to be able to beat a man, or create something through a one-touch pass. Very frustrating to watch. Our front 3 can’t score. We’ve scored 2 goals in 4 games since the intl break (league cup doesn’t count for 1st 11)- and those have come from Arteta and Cazorla. I’m not Theo’s greatest fan, but he should have started based on recent form. He was crap when he came on, but it’s hard to play yourself into a game like that.
    The bright side: we have a great draw in the league cup, and the “trophy” of 4th is still on!!

  13. gixf says:

    There r so many fickle fans around these days!

  14. West Upper says:

    I think the real power at the Club is Wenger – he has complete control over everything that happens. Gazidis is a distraction – the real responsibility for the decline is squarely with Wenger.

    I’m now at the stage when I find that watching Arsenal is just bloody boring – there are probably a dozen sides in the Prem now who are far more entertaining to watch.

  15. West Upper says:

    Just 1 thing to add to my previous comment – silent Stan obviously has the power to put Wenger out of his (and our) misery and is failing to do so. So I guess ultimate responsibility lies there.

  16. Ivor says:

    We fans should act fast and let these business men see that we aren’t a fool and we know what’s going on we shouldn’t just be talking and making plans here without acting… If we want a real change we should all stand up against them ASAP for we can see changes in January … We should act on match day at the emirate …or is our love for the club makes us give those idiots so much respect that we can’t say our wish for the club?

  17. marto says:

    Are we supporting a football club or a business entity for crying out loud

  18. GoonerSteve says:

    Sadly the only way forward is protest.

    When is the next Televised Arsenal home game? Is it Spurs?
    The fans should stay in the pubs and watch it there.
    If a practically empty stadium against our biggest rivals doesn’t hammer home how Arsenal fans really feel then nothing will.

  19. Elvis says:

    Good point marto:

    Arsenal is a well run, risk-averse, business (that’s a good thing) and a badly run unambitious football club (that’s a bad thing).

    It’s one thing to safeguard the business through sound financial management; it’s quite another to kill the soul of the club by accepting mediocrity.

    You don’t have to do what Leeds or Rangers did (spend tomorrow’s best-case-scenario money to fund today’s success) to compete at the highest level with revenue streams like Arsenal’s. But we consistently under-spend and therefore consistently under-achieve.

  20. PD says:

    My opinions (which people can argue with)
    - a squad with only one goalkeeper, no defensive midfielder at all & only one striker (& he still finding his feet in England) is just not good enough
    - a squad with far too few real leaders
    - a squad with abysmal ‘mental strength’
    - five awful performances in a row
    - a team completely outclassed (embarrassingly so) in two of those 5 games (we could have had no complaints if the score against both Schalke & MU was 4-0 or 5-0)
    - only three performances of real substance in 10 leagues games : Liverpool, Man City, West Ham

    Actual stats (which no-one can argue with)
    - only 4 wins in 10 league games
    - only in 3 of those 10 games have we scored more than 1 goal
    - only 1 clean sheet in our last 7 league games
    - only 1 clean sheet in our last 12 games in all competitions
    - 1 point less than we had in our first 10 league games last season. You all remember last season I assume? The one where the manager has admitted we were in a ‘huge crisis’, one that he blamed on circumstances outside his control & promised would never happen again.

    It’s grim reading. Made worse by the fact that we all knew it was going to happen……

  21. ramshit says:

    arsenal has only one problem… and his name is shit, ramshit… the mother of all shits

    as i’ve predicted for years, this piece of shit is useless… a championship player

    only wonker will flew private jet to sign him…. now fergie laughing all the the way to bank

  22. West Upper says:

    Elvis – I usually agree with your posts – however I will take issue on one thing and that is that I don’t think we under spend – we spend badly.

    In particular the lucrative contracts that have been awarded to the numerous journeymen in the squad (we all know who they are) that we can’t now off load.

    There is a corrosive acceptance of mediocrity running right through the club and this needs to be addressed starting at the top with Wenger. He is clearly several years past his sell by date.

  23. PD says:

    If there is anyone out there who has watched the MU & Schalke games the last few days & still thinks Wenger was right not to buy a big, aggressive defensive midfielder this summer then you are frankly bonkers. It’s not a criticism of Arteta. What he does is fine. It’s what he doesn’t do, that he’s simply not capable of doing, that kills us. He just shouldn’t be in that position.

    One half an hour only (between Theo’s goal & half time) when we were the better team in 180 minutes against Schalke ? They’re a good side but serious challengers to the best sides in Europe ? Not a hope. And yet over two games, they were much, much better than us. Fairly frightening.

    Hopefully ourselves & Schalke both win the next day cos if we go to Greece needing a result, you just know we won’t get it.

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