Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has been criticised for the Gunners recent displays.
The Gunners campaign is virtually finished. They are 11 points behind in the Premier League title race, out of the FA Cup and on the brink of a Champions League exit.
The Gunners face an almost impossible task in the Champions League last-16 second leg in recovering a 2-0 deficit at reigning champions Barcelona.
The Gunners are odds of 11/1 to win at the Nou Camp, which illustrates the magnitude of the task in hand.
The truth is most of the players at the Emirates are just not good enough to challenge for the major trophies this season. They are unlikely to come home from Barcelona with anything other than disappointment on Wednesday night.
Too many mediocre players
Arsenal have had world-class players in the Premier League era. The likes of Dennis Bergkamp, Thierry Henry and Patrick Vieira could have got into most teams in Europe in their pomp. How many outfield Arsenal players would get into Europe’s top teams at the moment?
Arguably only one in Mesut Ozil, who has already played for Real Madrid and was allowed to leave because he simply was not ‘Galactico-enough’.
Some would argue that Alexis Sanchez would maybe be considered good enough to play for Europe’s top teams, but for me the Chilean blows hot and cold. He was at Barcelona, where he produced decent performances.
He is a streaky player though. When he is hot he can be fantastic, but out-of-form, he struggles to make any impact no matter how hard he tries.
The likes of Aaron Ramsey, Olivier Giroud and Francis Coquelin are good players, but they are not players who would be signed by the likes of Barcelona or Bayern Munich, who have to be considered the two best teams in European football at the moment.
Wenger is a legend but is highly-stubborn
The man responsible for signing the players is Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger, who is no doubt a club legend. His work in north London for the first decade with the club will be regarded as revolutionary. However, the proceeding decade has produced nothing but near misses and underachievement.
The French boss should be praised for keeping Arsenal on an even keel during the construction of the Emirates Stadium. However, it could be argued that Leicester and Tottenham have not spent hundreds of millions in recent transfer windows and they are maintaining a title challenge.
The truth is Wenger thinks of every penny of Arsenal’s money as his own. He is too stubborn to spend on big players, despite the fact that numerous members of the Arsenal hierarchy have spoken of big transfer kitties available to the Frenchman.
He could have brought in a better quality of player, but he decided not to and Arsenal’s standing in English football has fallen because of his stubbornness.
The whole Luis Suarez saga summed-up Wenger’s stubbornness nicely. Arsenal failed to stump up the cash for the Uruguayan and he ended up at Barcelona. The 29-year-old has scored 42 goals in all competitions this season for the Catalan giants. He would have made a massive difference to Arsenal’s attack over the past few seasons.
Some may argue that Suarez has scored those goals with the help of world-class teammates like Lionel Messi and Neymar. That argument would fall flat on the basis he was prolific for Liverpool and was not surrounded by world-class striking-partners. He was also prolific at Ajax prior to his move to Merseyside.
Simply put Arsenal have not signed good enough players to be competitive with the big boys, or the little boys for that matter in the English game.
Arsene Wenger has to be questioned
Arsene Wenger’s future has to be questioned. People talking about Arsenal becoming the next Manchester United need to understand that United had won the title the year Sir Alex Ferguson left, Arsenal have not won a title in a decade.
Would it be so bad to let another person have a try at winning the Premier League title? How far could the Gunners really slip with good financial support?
The truth is Wenger is now coming to the end of his career. Managers cannot go on forever and at some stage their ideals become outdated and old-fashioned. At that point the said manager needs to accept it and step down with grace.
However, Wenger is not the sort of guy to slip into the night quietly at Arsenal. He will not quit his role as Arsenal boss, but maybe next summer when his contract expires he will be allowed to leave the club, as it looks very unlikely that the north London club will sack one of the clubs greatest ever bosses.
Should Arsene Wenger be Arsenal’s boss next season?