Football Friends Online – When 90 Mins Is Not EnoughWhy Arsenal’s humiliation at Old Trafford might be a good thing for the Gunners - Football Friends Online - When 90 Mins Is Not Enough Why Arsenal’s humiliation at Old Trafford might be a good thing for the Gunners - Football Friends Online - When 90 Mins Is Not Enough

Why Arsenal’s humiliation at Old Trafford might be a good thing for the Gunners

Wow. What a week it’s been for Arsenal. I think it’s fair to say that business is starting to pick up at the Emirates.

After being beaten in their own back yard by Liverpool, the Gunners were taunted all last week by the media and fans all over the country including their own.

And Sundays drubbing at the hands of the Champions really epitomised the mood of what things have been like for Arsenal in 2011.

Arsene Wenger’s men came into the calendar year on a wave of momentum, Samir Nasri was running rings around the opposition, Arsenal were looking strong in all four competitions and convincing victories such as the one at home to Chelsea were sparking talk of a potential quadruple.

To say things have gone downhill since then would be a massive understatement and if it wasn’t for the awesome return of the new captain Robin Van Persie then the Gunners probably wouldn’t have even made the top four at the end of the season.

However despite all the doom and gloom surrounding the club, Wenger’s side were able to beat Udinese at home before jetting off to Italy and pulling their finger out to put themselves into Pot One for the draw of the Group Stages of the Champions League. A massive victory worth £25 million.

But injuries and suspensions picked up from that game meant that an under strength were absolutely torn apart in Manchester.

Sir Alex Ferguson’s side didn’t even need to move into top gear, and credit to United whose finishing on the day was superb, but the away side was a disgrace.

Yes not many will score twice at the Old Trafford this campaign but I don’t think anyone will concede EIGHT YES EIGHT goals either.

The attitude was shocking, players having a go at one another a la Theo Walcott and Carl Jenkinson, many not seeming at all bothered such as Andrey Arshavin, Tomas Rosicky etc and general all-round  incompetent defending that the Gooner faithful have become all so used to.

After the game I thought Paul Merson made a great point which really highlighted the gulf between the once-fierce title rivals. Merse went on to say that out of the players on the pitch that day, only Robin Van Persie would be good enough to get into the Manchester United team, with Walcott having a chance of a good day.


Yes Sunday was a hugely embarrassing day, the worst result of Arsene Wenger’s reign. But I think there are major positives to come from the week that has passed.

Let’s face it, the most important game was won during the week, yes Arsenal are already miles behind in the Premier League both physically and mentally but securing a spot in the Champions League was the priority of the week.

And the fact that Wenger watched his side get slaughtered right before his own stubborn eyes may be the wake-up call that people have been praying for Le Boss to experience.

I welcome readers of this to disagree but I believe that Arsene Wenger is the man to take Arsenal forward. In my eyes the club doesn’t need a new manager but they do need a big change in the way the current gaffer runs the show.

Coupled with the ability to attract players with top European football, the weekends defeat means that Wenger has now finally realised that he needs to splash the cash on bringing in some new, quality, experienced players to the Emirates.

At the time of writing there is one day to go in the transfer window and Arsenal are hosting Andre Santos, Per Mertesacker and Park Chu Young for medicals at the Emirates. The left-back, centre-back and striker’s arrival would all address problem areas for the Gunners and significantly strengthen the Arsenal side.

Wenger’s sudden love for the market doesn’t stop there, as Chelsea trio Yossi Benayoun, Alex and Florent Malouda are all being strongly linked with the North Londoners, with Arsenal reportedly enquiring about the availability of Benayoun and Alex.

Whilst I’m a big admirer of the big Brazilian defender ever since he was as PSV, I can’t help but think that this enquiry is being used as a smokescreen to force another move for Gary Cahill. Seeing that Alex is on Arsenal’s radar could lead to Owen Coyle being more open to selling the England centre-back, especially considering he could lose his star man for nothing next year, something Wenger did wisely when it came to Samir Nasri.

Talking of smokescreens, Lille have apparently approached Liverpool regarding a possible loan deal for Joe Cole. Could this possibly be their way of conceding that the Ligue 1 player of the year for last season Eden Hazard could be on his way out? It is rumoured that they are willing to listen to offers for Hazard and that the player would be open to move to a club that can match his desire of European football. It’s that sort of power that European football can give clubs in the transfer market, hence why the Udinese game was more important than the United match.

The enquiry to Chelsea about Benayoun might well be another way of Wenger trying to lure Lille out of their cave and let Hazard go, but personally I can’t see him leaving the French Champions.

And finally I think if Wenger was pessimistic about adding players with big money to the club then he should take a look at what Kenny Dalglish is doing at Liverpool. Yes it’s not led to immediate success but the Reds sure look like they’re heading that way, as discussed in my last article.

So just over a day to go and deals are happening left, right and centre. Get buckled up because this summer’s transfer window is really taking off.

Matt Cotton @FindingCotton

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