Arsenal FC supporters need to celebrate their team right now
At the start of the millennium, Arsenal were competing with Manchester United for the title although Matthew Glazier of FootballTips.com now thinks the fans should be happy to be challenging for a Premier League top four place.
Arsenal aren’t going to win the Premier League this season. They won’t be champions next season or the season after either. These aren’t defeatist statements but simply an honest analysis that the Gunners are no longer equipped to challenge for the title.
It hasn’t always been like this. As recently as the 2003-04 season, Arsenal went 38 games without a single defeat and laughed in the face of a Chelsea squad that had received a £100 million cash injection from Roman Abramovich. Manchester United were struggling post-Beckham and Manchester City were involved in a relegation struggle for most of the campaign.
Wind the clock forward nearly ten years and a lot has changed. Abramovich has barely relented when it has come to the annual strengthening of the Blues, while Manchester United also have major financial clout despite the Glazer regime having potentially catastrophic long-term consequences. Then there are the newly-crowned champions who have waved cash in the noses of Kolo Toure, Samir Nasri, Emmanuel Adebayor and Gael Clichy to lure them from the Emirates Stadium in the past few seasons.
And yet Arsene Wenger has still managed to steer Arsenal to a top-four finish ever since the ‘Unbeatables’ won the title in 2004. The Frenchman was ridiculed when claiming a Champions League qualification place at the end of the season was akin to winning a trophy although supporters will only realise the full extent of this statement when the Gunners finally miss out on a top-four Premier League spot.
Supporters should be celebrating the fact that they have one of the best teams in England who are successfully competing at Europe’s top table right now. It might only take a rich billionaire to invest in a club like Newcastle or Aston Villa and Arsenal might find themselves sinking towards mid-table every year.
Wenger once famously said that “if you eat caviar every day it’s difficult to return to sausages” after hearing Arsenal fans booing their team’s performance. That quote came in 1998 although it’s still relevant fifteen years later with supporters continuing to believe that the north London club has the potential to win the title every season, even though the bookmaker odds suggest they are no better than outsiders.