Ivan heaps a teaspoon of pressure on Wenger, via the papers


Arsene Wenger’s future at Arsenal could be decided by the club’s form in the Europa League, according to stories published simultaneously in the Mirror, Daily Telegraph and Daily Mail.

Out of the FA Cup and languishing in sixth place in the Premier League table, the Gunners are now hoping to rescue their season with success in the Europa League and League Cup. The former would represent a back-door route to the riches of the Champions League, while the latter a timely boost on the domestic front given it requires a win over Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City.

Failure to secure silverware, coupled with a consecutive season finishing outside the top four, would be likely to point a spotlight on Wenger’s struggles, especially as he’d again be entering the final year of a contract this summer.

The articles all hint that the manager’s status will be reviewed at the end of the season but also stress that no decision will be made until then. The underlying vibe is ‘Ivan’s in charge now bitches’ and a reassurance that all the high-profile backroom changes form part of a succession plan. At the same time, we’re obviously a long, long way from Brutus sticking the knife in Caesar’s back just.

There’s nothing particularly unusual about this conference call journalism, Ivan’s ‘not so under the radar’ briefings are becoming something of a tradition when the going gets tough and the fans get grouchy.

It’s over to Arsene now. If he bites back with a couple of trophies and Champions League qualification, it’ll no doubt return Ivan to the box that Kroenke keeps him in. Albeit temporarily. That said, the dynamic at the club certainly appears to be changing after so many years.

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79 Comments on "Ivan heaps a teaspoon of pressure on Wenger, via the papers"

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Mein Bergkampf

Thanks for that Ivan. Please don’t doubt that we have as little, if not less, faith in you than Mr Wenger who you continuously try to dethrone. God I bet Arsene hates him.

Too Drunk To Be Offside
Too Drunk To Be Offside

Why the hate overflow for good old Gaz. All these years people had a go at him for doing nothing, now finally when he tries to loosen Wenger’s authority at the club so we could finally see the end of Wenger’s once glorious but now very very mediocre reign, people hate him.

Just what do you want Gaz to do. Sit by and do nothing or get rid of Wenger.

In fact now that the control has been taken from Wenger, this was the 1st good transfer window in a long while that the club had. Wenger having less and less control seems like a good plan.


Not sure doing this in the public eye is beneficial for the club or the team performance. It kinda seems he is bigging up his own ability.

If gazidis leaves for a large European club in next couple of years then that would royally wind me up.


He tried to do it away from the public eye and Wenger went straight to Stan. If this is what it takes, this is what it takes. The club will get over it.


Sure. And “what is a director of football” was a very subtle, behind-closed-doors power move. I’m sure if the Aubameyang move had gone through, there would’ve been a cultured reserve from the manager, just like his not-at-all public comments regarding wanting a defender this Jan. Nobody is a naif in this.


… if the Aubameyang move had *not* gone through…

Too Drunk To Be Offside
Too Drunk To Be Offside

Abumeyang in all likelihood wouldn’t have gone through had it not been for Mislinat (or whatever his name is). Arsenal tried without him in the summer and failed, but after he was brought in in Nov., in yet another power move, Abumeyang was bought.

Northern Gooner

Agree with you except I think it’s too soon to declare this transfer window as a good one in a long time.

Wholesale changes mid season reek of desperation and lack of planning and looking at the players we lost against the ones we gained, i’m genuinely not sure we are better off, time will tell i guess.


Sanchez was going anyway.
If you think Coquelin, Walcott, Giroud Out and Aubameyang, Mkhitariyan In is not an objectively good window then I dont know what is.


This, exactly.
Blogs really really hates Gazidis. And so do many of the fans no matter what he does.
As far as I remember, Wenger himself stated some time back that Gazidis has nothing to do with any footballing decisions at the time. And the club has done pretty good commercially since he came in. So he has been doing the job he was given.
If now the guy is trying to step out of that limited role to set right a club in decline then what is the problem?


The best outcome would be us winning the Europa League but Arsene still leaving. He can end his reign on a high, and we’ll have CL football so it’ll be easier for the new manager to attract new players.

Unfortunately the more realistic outcome is us not winning anything this year, and Arsene still staying on.

Dave M

For his sake and his legacy Arsene needs to move on, For Arsenal’s sake he, Gazidis and DEFINITELY Kroenke need to move on. Love Wenger and what he achieved, but we’re going no-where with him at the helm. How long can it go on before people actually realize that?!

But like you say we’ll see all three back next year and the same blahzae squad mentality, same unchallenged players, same unambitious owner


We have been living that realism for a decade.

Twisted cuntloks

Sorry can’t totally agree with what you say. We have been going somewhere with AW at the helm… It is backwards.


Backwards from the height he achieved? Don’t be ridiculous. He’s not performing up to his own par, and that is a fair reason to demand more from the club, but don’t discredit the fact that he has firmly kept this club at least within the realms of possibly competing. As this standard is slowly not being met now, many fans are entitled to be unhappy. But don’t paint a ridiculous picture about how this club is going to the dogs. We can recover from this either through Wenger or not, and a secure financial platform goes a long way in this kind of consistency.

Losing our shit and throwing the warchest at every season’s top talent would completely destabilize our club.

Twisted cuntloks

Over the past 10+ years (perhaps bar one year) we have not been competing for the title. Our league title challenge has been finished pretty much by around Christmas but it seems to be getting earlier with every passing season.

“the fact that he has firmly kept this club at least within the realms of possibly competing”

I am sure there are many managers out there that could do the bare minimum if you think that’s acceptable for a club like ours.

“Losing our shit and throwing the warchest at every season’s top talent would completely destabilize our club.”

We never lose our shit and we never seem to outlay much on players when you consider we generally make a player trading profit most seasons. If we actually went a little in to defecit in player trading terms, I don’t think we would see a distabilized club.

Dave M

We’ve spent money on players and but we’re actually going backwards. Problem was the one season we needed to invest and move forward we bought a GK and no outfield players and Leicester won that season. IMO that was when we lost Alexis.

Thus right now it doesn’t seem to matter who we have Arsene is not getting the best out of his players. We have a really talented team, but the biggest problems IMO stem from:

1) Playing the wrong tactics with the wrong personnel: This was so apparent again against Tots. We basically played 4-5-1 and tried to play high tempo with Auba as the ONLY outlet. I’m all about higher tempo, but we need some pace on the wings to help with that and not drawing the wide players in to crowd the midfield, which didn’t even work to control the ball anyway. Before that all season we had that pace around and we played tippy tappy with Laca making runs and clearly being ignored on instructions all game

2) Squad mentality: There are no leaders. The pundits are right. Where is the leaders in this squad? Who is the guy yelling at his teammates and demanding more, especially on those cold tough away nights?

3) Wenger doesn’t call his players out and fosters this complacent squad mentality. There is no incentive to challenge this bunch. Giroud and Alexis clearly had the drive and determination to get that internally, but that is not the same for all players, many need a leader to pull them forward and get that extra bit out or a manager to scare them into better performances through a bit of public criticism and public challenging…Arsenal has neither…Sure they may be happy because they like each other and the boss, but thats the problem, they should be pissed at how pathetic the league standings are and our pathetic the form is, just doesn’t seem like it.

As such we just simply aren’t getting better under Wenger. Love to be proven wrong but these ground hog seasons of the last 5+ years are a lot of evidence to the contrary


Gazidis is doing his job in sending this latest in a series of messages following the hiring of Mislintat and Sanlkehi. The job that Kroenke has told him to do. About time.


About a year ago it came out that the US Soccer Federation wanted Gazidis to leave Arsenal and help run the MLS and work on the US-Mexico World Cup 2026 bid. I think turning down that offer might have given Gazidis a bit of leverage with Kroenke.

Kroenke wouldn’t touch a hair on Wenger’s head otherwise.


Funny how Ivan has suddenly got all confident and bitchy now he’s finished work on his Robo-Gazidis exosuit. Knows he can just stomp on Wenger if needs be, I guess. Pneumatic knees give him a lot o’stomp.


So the article practally confirms the fans current beliefs;
League results aren’t good enough(duh)
Wengers time is up(within the next 18 months)
Change from the dictatorship to a hierarchy structure is a forethought to wenger going.

Nothing NEW here really, and just placating fans?

Though it’s good to hear ‘change is coming’ it has no bearing on current dilemmas.
Having a faithful manager means a classy club has to have faith in him in return even if it means we’re hurt in the process.


Though if we fluke a milk & egg cup win v City, Wenger will go to his mate Kroenke & bobs your uncle a new contract please! ‘Well err I have nothing else to do with my life & my millions in the bank’

Always Arsenal

What do you mean fluke ? It’s not like we haven’t beaten them before. You’ve already made your mind up. Whatever we win won’t be good enough for you or the scummy press BAAAAAA !


I don’t think so, I think that only flies once and he did it with the fa Cup wins. Since then Ivan had to take a step back and look at the clubs situation, saw areas where he could improve our reliance on wenger and this time I think he will be in a much stronger position against wenger staying.


what do you mean “change” has no bearing on current dilemmas . what would you rather have keep the the current situation until we are relegated!!

faith has to be both ways , in return for the club showing faith to long serving manager(which they have been doing for a decade) the manager in return has to do what he should do best improve the teams performance particularly that leaky defence which have been leaky for a decade but still has not fixed. even if the team is not improving we have to atleast see the effort from the manager , but constant baffling team selections , using the same tactics that he used decades ago , basically chaging nothing apart from the formation means he is not even trying hard.

wenger has become a tyrant in the club wielding too much power in the club and without anyone questioning him he lost his sight of one thing that matters , winning . what should have been classy was wenger admitting some of his faults in team related matters and relinquishing some powers and lower his salarys due to disastrous couple of seasons and leave if he feels like he is not taking this club forward. after all this is his club, would he rather destroy it himself or see is thrive


Misquoted me mate, missed the keyword ‘coming’.
which is why it doesn’t affect things currently (which means now)….


Good. We need to show that we are ruthless. If you don’t step up your game, you’re out the door.


About time. Same with the players.

Ozil needs to perform and earn his contract now or sell him. Pitiful against spuds in contrast to Ericsson

Tas Gunner

Ozil is not a center back.

Daft Aider

Ospina is not a winger.


My mother is not my auntie’s brother.


ozil isn’t anything


pitiful most of the time

Don Cazorleone

like the support

David Hillier\'s luggage
David Hillier\'s luggage

Ivan does love throwing a Arsene under the bus, doesn’t he?!? Say what you want about Wenger at least he shows a bit of integrity when talking about his staff.

Dave M

God forbid someone being held accountable in public at Arsenal…what a disgrace eh?!


How about that someone be this bald f*ck instead?

Dave M

How about all of them and the players…They all need and deserve it. Name one player or manager or coach or CEO or owner or board member you can honestly say has done a great job at Arsenal over the last 5+ years?

Yellow Ribbon

Enough of this already. Arsene being put under so much constant pressure by the media and the fans over and over again is just painstaking to see. I think it has become impossible to defend him too. Please Arsene save us from all this pain and a deep down bad feeling about ourselves and leave.

Twisted cuntloks

I don’t think the media put wenger under much pressure compared to other managers. He got off lightly while we slept walked through 10 years without a single trophy…


True. Unlike other managers he isn’t asked after every game if he worries about his job


that’s because we all know the answer

Kwame Ampadu Down

Hilarious. Instead of arguing that Arsene is doing a great job, now the move is to try to make this into ‘Arsene should leave cos it’s terrible to see people putting him under pressure’.
Arsene should go because he’s no longer doing a good job & it’s in the club’s best interest for him to go. He deserves huge respect, absolutely, but not this bullshit. i.e. making him a victim & blaming the fans/the media.

Twisted cuntloks

Spot on


I know this is fluff but honestly it’s crazy if whether or not Wenger is allowed to stay depends on the Europa league. The past 2 years should have provided all the evidence needed to make a decision on this.


It’s madness honestly. After the Bayern games last season we could have replaced him with someone to steady the ship, in the end we lost out on 4th to Liverpool by a point.

Even this season it was obvious early on that things weren’t improving and we could have done something then.


I don’t mind waiting until the end of the season given there will be a lot more candidates available and I feel like Wenger has earned the right to at least have the pretense of him stepping away rather than being sacked. But there is simply no valid argument from a sporting sense to allowing him to continue past the end of the season.

Dave M

But that has been the same thing for about the last 4 years…”he should get until the end of the season win a cup then leave, he deserves that”…he deservED that the last three FA cups wins and then guess who is back next year…last year was it. That was the time to go end of contract, FA Cup win, GO, just please go enjoy what you got Arsene…now its just gone WAY too far…we’ll get to the end of the season, world cup distractions, no free managers, oh well lets just give him this next season too…
I’m done. I’d be happy if he was gone tomorrow (hopefully he would get asked to do the honourable thing and step aside), but this team doesn’t get better until he (and then it will still probably take Gazidis and Kroenke f*cking off too) to turn things around…We are like that forgotten biscuit sitting under your couch for the last 6 months…Stale AF!

Dave M

It says everything that you need to know about the club’s real ambition. It’s not even the top 4, its just making profits…that has been obvious for a long time, just chalk this up as a little more evidence. At least with the top 4 we could stomach it because the champions league is pretty cool to be a part of…there is nothing cool or interesting about the Europa league. I tried to like it at the start of the season, but its like watching lower division football when you know much better footballers are playing from the top league on another channel.


Not sure why people are lashing out at Gazidis on this.

He doesn’t pick the team or decide on the (lack of) tactics.

You wanted players? His new operations team nabbed Aubameyang and Mkhitaryan in a winter window.

This whole shitshow came about when Wenger won the FA cup and backdoored Gazidis / Kroenke Jr. to set up a direct meeting with the old man, himself. From there, it was a case of old, white men looking after old, white men and thus, Wenger received a new contract ahead of the board meeting.

Most supporters would prefer that Wenger to move on

Gazidis would prefer that Wenger move on

Kroenke Jr. would prefer that Wenger move on
(but he doesn’t want to upset Dad)

Stan Kroenke probably has trouble remembering
what he ate for breakfast, let alone
who manages the football club.

Dave M

“let alone which football club he manages”


Stan doesn’t manage anything.

He probably just sits on his ranch, shooting animals as he earns more $ on the slave wages of the Walmart empire.

Dave M

Sorry I meant owns…”Let alone which football club he owns”


Yep, they’re Gazidis bought and sold players until laca gets injured and then it’s all “why did Wenger buy Auba and wreck Laca’s confidence?” “Why did Wenger sell Giroud to finance Auba transfer?”
I can’t honestly say who was responsible for all the ins and outs in January, but I do know that you can’t have it both ways…… I hope one day that all will be revealed but until then who knows what is actually going on at our club? It’s all guess work and as much as I think Wenger needs to move on, for his own sake as much as anything else, we can’t just credit Gazidis with everything that goes well with club and rip Wenger to pieces with everything that goes wrong. Same goes for Alexis contract situation, if we’re to assume that Wenger wanted to keep him and the board wanted to sell him then why did they wait until deadline day in the summer to try to move him on? I think there might be a bit more to Wenger’s “this has been the most disruptive January transfer window” comment than I first thought….. Needless to say, there is a lot wrong with our beloved club at the moment and I think it goes beyond just Wenger and his management of the team….

Danger Mouse

Arsene looked a broken man after the Spuds game. He’s a smart guy and surely knows he’s just not got the winning formula anymore. Once he was cutting edge, now his teams are cut open. He looked like a man who knew his time was up. I’d say he knows this is his last season. I hope we are respectful of him till the end.


Let’s just hope, for his sake as well as our own, he manages to add a European trophy to our cabinet before bowing out respectfully.


I totally agree…the picture of him with his hands in his head when Laca missed that shot will be etched on my mind for a long time. Sometimes Wenger gets a bit angry and terse when things aren’t going well, but that was someone who knew that the reigns of control are being prised from his hands and it showed real anguish.

Kwame Ampadu Down

Arsene should be anguished because his team are going nowhere. If he’s anguished because control is being wrestled away from him then no-one should have any sympathy for him.

I have a cunning plan
I have a cunning plan

I remember people saying the same thing even last season when we had that losing run in Jan-Feb(before he switched to a 3 man defense) and yet here we are


Frankly I think the gaffer is already checked out.

He’s been strangely muted with regards January transfers and seemingly deferring to the new arrangement. This would not have been with the old Arsene Wenger.

As I have mentioned for many seasons now all these voices wanting him gone need not worry their little heads.

He was always going to go.

And as I mentioned way back, most likely the departure is set for 2018 post Wcup when there will be a major reshuffling of management.

In which case he would be shoed in for the French National job.

I don’t see Wenger continuing club management at 68yrs.

He will never get the same lattitude he has had at Arsenal nor will he ever feel the same in terms of rapport (even with recent tough times)

More likely the National job will appeal since in many ways, there isn’t the same amount of pressure and it will be a 4 year deal which takes him to 72yrs.


The more worrying thing is the arrangement in place with Gazidis and the new “director of Football Mslintat.

We have NOT bought well in January.

It looks seemingly glittery with Aubameyang a decent capture but it has in no ways taken into full account our squad balance needs let alone strategic implications.

Instead we have been forced to take on Mhkitaryan, an aging assets whom I feel Jose was willing to let go for more than anything-else consistency. He has always been capable of brilliance (scorpion kick) but how he sustains effort is key to Mourinho.

At 28yrs, there is a fundamental difference as well to the other Mourinho discards that have gone on to do well for themselves. He is at his peak and looks frankly shy of full physical peak.

Rather than accept a slightly lower deal from City, Mslintat and company went to do a swap deal. I would have taken 25m from City or sold Alexis at higher to United with no obligations to taking Mhkitaryan (whilst we still had City on hold)

The bargaining it would seem in this case was heavily waited to accommodating Mslintat’s old contacts.

And of course this had implications to whether we could say have taken on a disaffected Mahrez still only 26yrs, with plenty of pace and a better balance IMO between creation out wide and good strike rate. At 50m release clause, we had plenty of other options to ensure we could bring him in at advertised price rather than the hiked figure thrown at City late on when Leicester had less recourse to replace (we could have offered Nelson on loan) and with City themselves having no other options in hand.

With us committed (forced) to take Mhkitaryan, we then went on to rather unnecessarily reconfigure our attack.

Again, purchase was expedient to the buying team in another ex-Dortmund player but one that was cup tied for europa which had fundamental implications to our strategic picture. Worse we had to trade out Giroud to make the deal happen.

All this without even an attempt to address one of the most glaring deficiencies, our cover in midfield ahead of the defense.

One has to question the level of communication between the coaching staff and the buying team through this proceedings.

When Wenger goes, this may have impact to the next manager coming into frame.

It may appear as if the solution to our woes is to rid ourselves of a manager long in the tooth but we may be deluding ourselves if the machinery put in place to replace him offers such poorly thought out strategies in market.

In which case, prepare for more disappointment. It could get worse.

Kwame Ampadu Down

Start your own blog santori. You just post the same things over & over (regardless of whether it has relevance to what’s being debated) and when someone tries to debate with you, you never bother to engage. You either don’t understand how comments sections work or you have zero manners.



– 25m doesn’t even buy you Danny drinkwater. we got a player who was bordering on world class at Dortmund in exchange. given how badly Wenger had managed the Sanchez situation that was a huge win.

– even prior to us buying Aubameyang Giroud was talking about leaving as Deschamps publically told him to go somewhere else. Aubameyang is a better player than Giroud – practically no one disputes that. Giroud was useful but not if we want to play fast paced attacking football

-city had a 60m bid turned down for Mahrez. If his choice was city or Arsenal he’s not coming here. Add in all the papers were quoting 90m as his price (before everyone complains about the papers being wrong they were correct on the price for Aubameyang, Ox, giroud etc). Mahrez is not worth 90m pounds.

-The new team got Ozil to sign up. That’s a really big deal

It seems there’s a nontrivial chance that squad building has been handed over to Minseltat and Sanhelli. That’s not a bad thing as Wenger’s buying record since 2014 has been beyond spotty.


You don’t understand Santori negotiations? Since we have options we can force a club who doesn’t want to sell for lower price. Its really simple.

Thats how PSG got Neymar.

Wenger\'s Medulla Oblongata
Wenger\'s Medulla Oblongata

Santori, I preferred you when your cliches were “Flamini” last year and “nuances’ earlier this season. You couldn’t have gotten the transfer window negotiations any more wrong than you already have…

Sanchez had a handshake deal with Shitty at an agreed wage. ManUre put in a cheeky offer which far exceeded Shitty’s wages, including massive kickbacks for his manager. At that stage we were going to pocket about £25mil. Then Raiola cottoned on that, 2 years ago, his player Mhki had preferred an Arsenal move but, was offered better terms and signed for ManUre. He then poked his head into the negotiations with Mhki marginalised by Moaninho (the cunt) and suggested a swap deal. At this point we were going to swap Sanchez for Mhki and pocket £10mil. Raiola and Sanchez’s manager weren’t quite satisfied and wanted higher commissions. At the end of the day we got a quality player in exchange for our prized asset who was going to leave on a free at the end of the season anyway. Sanchez is also a prize prick; amazing footballer but, unsettled the changing room.

This had a ripple effect in closing the Auba deal- I don’t know how this cannot excite you?! And, with that, we re-signed Ozil- the best assister in world footballer and probably (if we reflect on history) a parallel talent to Bergkamp (though he has some way to achieving his Godly status)- our marquee signing of yesteryear.

This was our biggest transfer window (in terms of quality) since we moved to the Emirates. Sven did some phenomenal maneuverimg to pull that off.

Yes, we need to address the midfield and defensive issues but, we normally don’t do much business in the January window. And, Sven has only been in the job a few months. He’ll bring in quality. He’ll work on those other frailties but, my god, if that’s what he can put together in a few months, imagine what he’ll do in a few years?!


Ain’t nobody got time for that……

Daft Aider

“You’re sacked Arsene”
“We’ve already hired..”


You do know he can speak English, right?

Donald\'s Trump

Eeez a leeetle beet non


Hey Blogs, I’m wondering what do you think about Ivan? It’s a question I’m posting here, because I’d also like that the other fans could answer. Thanks in advance guys, COYG!!


Not overly fond of Ivan, or this public campaign againat wenger.

Very fond of this feeling that *something* is shifting.

Relief at the thought this might be wengers final season, and only europa league glory might puah that back. Win/win.


The way this situation portrayed sound more like a Mexican standoff where every body dies at the end, Ivan, AW, the backroom staff ..etc…however, I believe they both Ivan and AW understand there is more common ground to work together for interest of the club than otherwise.
Ultimately they both work for the same man and should there be standoff he can step in and side with one party and you cannot predict with whom he would side..
They both too smart to let that happen.

Jean Ralphio

Is there any conclusive evidence that Ivan is feeding the papers with this? Or is that Arseblog making an inferrence?

G S Onyango

I think there is no evidence to that effect. The blogger is fond of always alluding that there is war between the two. And if there is then I would throw my weight and support for Ivan. Ivan stands for a new image club that wins trophies and Wenger is for retaintion of the old habits that benefits the status quo.

Charles Charlie Charles
Charles Charlie Charles

“There is irritation at the perception that such faith has been invested in Wenger for those reasons given that he has delivered some tangible success in all 21 completed seasons.“

Suggests he ain’t leaving any time soon.


Careful what you wish for. Jose. Klopp. Conte and the spurs manager are all considered geniuses. One of them won’t finish in the top four but will still be considered a genius by pundits and the media. All of them were out of the title race by Jan and all now talk about the importance of finishing in the top 4, something that when wenger talked about brought him derision and mockery.

I’m not saying mr Wenger hasn’t made some bonehead moves, or mistakes like refusing to fill Vieiras spot, or get another decent cb.



Power plays and political manoevering. In any corporation there is always layers of management before you can blame anyone higher up.

Shouldn’t we be working together?


Ivan is young and hungry for success that would reflect well on him and his ego.
As Kroenke is and will remain silent, Gazi could be the engine demanding and paving success for the club. He is on a leash at the moment and whilst I love Wenger the man and I crave for trophies it is time for change. I would personally love to see the Monaco coach (Leo Jardim) at the helm of our team. He’s been taken his best players for the past 3 years and still maintain a high level of competitiveness, with attractive football and unbelievable fighting spirit.


Only London Gooners can save the club. The board is never going to move a finger against AW as long as he returns a profit on the books. London Gooners need to make it difficult for him at the stadium, match day after match day, win or lose.


Can’t link up with to the majority of the comments on this particular story. What does it mean? 😉