15 Dec 2012

'Give him a break' - LFC legend blasts 'deluded' TV hack over Wenger jibes...

After a period of indifferent over the last month, Arsenal have dropped to 7th place in the Premier League table, and suffered the ignominy of elimination from the Crapital One Cup at the hands of League two club Bradford City. This has inevitably led to speculation that the Frenchman's job is on the line, but Liverpool legend Dietmar Hamann is having none of it, and argues that Wenger's critics are 'deluded'.

Yesterday, Hamann was moved to defend the Arsenal boss against criticism from TV Presenter Piers Morgan, who scathed:

"Time to take the rose tint out of your Wenger glasses, Gooners. He's lost it, and we all know it. Last night was final, humiliating straw.

Wenger's sold our 4 best players in last 2 years, replaced with mediocrity, and encouraged '4th is a trophy' mentality. He has to go."

In response, Hamann labelled Morgan's views on Wenger 'deluded', and added:

"Can't believe how people vilify Arsene Wenger including Piers Morgan. The man reached last 16 in CL 13 years running. Wenger is probably the most successful manager if you weigh their finishing position against the profit/debt against any other club. Give the man a break.

I totally agree with Hamann on this. Wenger is a superb manager , and English football is an immeasurably better place with him in it. Qualifying for the Champions League thirteen years in a row is a formidable achievement, but even that pales in comparison to the Frenchman's genius in the transfer market. To underline Wenger's importance to Arsenal over the years, consider the following factual statistics:

LFC vs. AFC: Transfer Spending 1990-2011 - Main Table

Liverpool vs. Arsenal - Transfer Spending Comparison 1990-2011

LFC vs. AFC: Transfer Spending 1990-2011 - Grand Totals

Liverpool vs. Arsenal - Transfer Spending comparison - 1990-2011 - Grand Totals


* Since 1990, Arsenal's net spend on transfers is 68% less than LFC.

* In the 2000s, LFC spent 44% more than Arsenal on transfers (Gross)

* Only 4 times in the last 21 years, have Arsenal had a higher net spend than Liverpool.

* In the 2000s, Arsenal averaged 2.5m net spend per year, yet still won the PL twice.

* Arsenal's total net spend over the last 21 years is 68% less than Liverpool's.

* Conversely, LFC's net spend in the 2000s was 85% higher than Arsenal's, yet the club failed to win the league. This result alone makes a mockery of the (false) contention that high net spend = more chance of winning trophies.

* Under Arsene Wenger, Arsenal have had a negative net-spend six times, yet they've still qualified for the Champions League every year during the Frenchman's reign.

These figures emphatically underline the difference a brilliant manager can make at a football club, and given the financial constraints under which he's operated, Wenger is clearly an excellent manager.

There would've been blood on the streets if a Liverpool manager had to operate with negative net spend of -£9.9m over 6 years, but Wenger managed it (without complaint or constant boardroom battles), and Arsenal still qualified for the CL every single year.

If, for example, Rafa Benitez had to run the team with that kind of net spend figure (and also bear the financial brunt of building a new stadium), would Liverpool have got anywhere near the top 4 during his reign? I sincerely doubt it.

Indeed, using the logic of those who perpetuate the net spend myth, all the players Arsenal bought between 2004 and 2010 cost a grand total of -£9.9m! Jeez, even I can afford that! Guess I'll head down to the transfer market tomorrow and see if I can snap up a Samir Nasri or an Andrei Arshavin for -£2m apiece (!)

Wenger has made ridiculous amounts of money for Arsenal over the years, and that fact will not be lost on the club's senior hierarchy, who will - I'm sure - give 'The Professor' all the time he needs to get the Gunners back on track.

Jaimie Kanwar


  1. you forgot to mention Liverpool won The champions League in that era from 2000 , Arsenal 0

  2. Wow excellent research ! This should appear on ALL Arsenal blogs. That would soon shut a few people up.

  3. Wow, what an assessment. Amazing and right on spot

  4. How will they react when we finish 4th and they don't qualify for the cl?
    That aside he is very good manager and a brilliant businessman that lacked little bit of luck- since Henry left his main players abandoned him too early- RVP only contributed highly for a short period of time, Adebayor was stupid enough to leave(can I say stupid?), other players wanted to stay only if other would (Fabregas case) African Cup of Nations and too many different nations might have been the problem and now English players are a problem...
    Maybe it is time for him to change the club- Fulham has money for instance and with him spending it wisely in couple of years they could challenge for cl spot...

  5. excellent article , thanks i'm an arsenal fan, most clubs fans appreciate what he has done except for arsenal fans.

    They just to dumb. This should be provided to every arsenal fan on our next home game.

    Please post this on daily mail site, those twats like to chat crap about arsenal and liverpool all the time

  6. Since Chelsea got money they ain't won a thing that's the same time as when rafa came

  7. lol champions league last year for 1

  8. jaimie high net spend is not a myth,but its got to be spent wisely

  9. AW in my personal opinion should still manage Arsenal.
    Taking blame to an extent is fair. The players at the end of the day are guility and must be accountable for all the goings on on the pitch [Period]
    Even during the days of Cesc, RVP, Nasri and the others who left due to whatever reasons they only know best. BUT don't forget the draw of the MONEY the chief pull factor in modern football for that matter in any employment!

  10. The DM are manc lovers bud!!!

  11. Wenger has done a good job but i see him slipping behind a resurgent Liverpool this season, as for him wanting Sterling i hope he has £25m to spend?, as Sterling has 18 months on his current deal. The worry for Wenger is his best players leaving or wanting to leave, greedy players are part of the dance it seems!!!!

  12. And Liverpool deserve credit for that...but would you swop Arsenals post 2000 success for Liverpools? I continue to be amazed at the objectivity of this Liverpool blog, I don't read non-Arsenal blogs, but maybe now's the time to start. I always contend that if there was no AW at Arsenal, we'd be about where Aston Villa are... Take a step back Gooners and just think what that would be like!

  13. think what he meant is since Abramovic came to Chelsea, and Rafa to Liverpool Arsenal won nothing.

  14. This is the best blog in football, Jaimie gives us the facts mate. It's upto us to argue if he is right or wrong, as long as idiots don't start getting mouthy about Liverpool anyone is welcome. Since 2000 Liverpool have won 9 or 10 trophies in total which isn't too bad!!!

  15. Actually, looking at his analysis, it's 8 trophies to Arsenals 5...but I guess Jaimie forgot to count the '4th place' trophy AW is always banging on about :-)

  16. Excellent article. Wenger is a top manager, the facts don't lie.
    i've been going to the Arsenal for well over 30 years, The club is now being run by money minded business men and greedy politicians, there's not a football man in sight. People like David Dein & Ken Friar are Arsenal fans and have the best interests of the club at heart, they just want the Arsenal back on track as the club is their passion. As long as Silent Stan and Ivan the Terrible are at the club Wenger will take all the flack and the Arsenal will only go down hill... Bring back David Dein ffs

    gutted from north london

  17. Champions League (1) 2005
    Uefa Cup (1) 2001
    FA Cup (2) 2001-2006
    League Cup (3) 2001-2003-2012
    Community Shield (2) 2001-2006

    Second Champions League final 2007
    FA Cup final 2012
    League Cup final 2005
    Ranked no1 by UEFA

    Considering it's a fallow period that is very good???

  18. Right Pool fans. How about swapping our last eight top four finishes for your CL trophy and a couple of domestic cups?

    Deal or no deal?

  19. Gano1
    Exactly my point mate. Players/fans would want to win trophies. Wonder if Hamann would rather have a fourth place finish in his CV than the 2005 CL win.

    Arsene has done a wonderful job over the years.But he is no longer the same manager who was once, when he created the best ever team in the Premier league.Notwithstanding the fact that Piers Morgan is a twat, Hamann should shut up and mind his own business.

  20. On the picture of their promo for the 2009/10 season ticket membership, they had Van Persie, Cesc, Walcott, Nasri and Adebayor. Throw in the likes of Song, etc How times have changed. Some of these players haven't gone to be consistent successes since leaving but whilst at Arsenal, they were doing really well and part of Arsene's young project. Slowly but surely, that has eroded away as its a hard task juggling development of young players and success. Young players are generally inconsistent as well as wishy washy mentality and add in the ambition for success by the club, the manager (he has repeatedly said in the past that those young lads were ready to challenge for the title) and the players themselves, you got yourself a hard task. It would have been some feat had Wenger pulled it off but unsurprisingly, he hasn't as its not easy putting that much faith in young players to help you be successful. In the last 2/3 seasons he has brought in older players, which has suggested a change in tact towards his transfer policy, with the likes of Cazorla, Arshavin, etc. But some of these players have been very questionable to say the least. They got some cash reserves, the club, next summer me thinks will see Wenger splash it. Some of the lack of progression by the club on the pitch can be partially excused for the planning for FFP, stadium, etc, but in hindsight, especially with the high wage bill they have, the way they have gone about juggling preparing the club for the future, the ambition for success in the short term and the transfer policy hasn't worked out all that well.

    I was reading the transcript of his Friday newspaper conference, the cheek of some of the journos to pester him in the way they did and how he tolerated it is somewhat sad. Some of the answers he said were disagreeable as he was defending himself & club, which is not surprising but it is somewhat off-key seeing him getting fired upon like that, although it shows how bad it is now for Arsene's Arsenal.

    I second the shout by the Arsenal fan about David Dein, they need him back.

    He has already given in to changing his transfer policy once since the start of youth project, with the signings of Santos, Vermaelen, Cazorla, etc, in recent seasons but he has to change again, maybe go for someone special above the £20m+ maybe.

    If the board allow Wenger to splash big cash next summer, I think he should stay.

    I watched the second half of the Bradford game onwards and despite the dominating possession, they were so soul-less in their attacking play, which is not what you expect to see from Arsenal, considering some of their attacking play when they had RVP & Cesc (Yes, they weren't successful but they were good to watch as a attacking team). Chamakh & Gervinho are a joke, absolute joke. Not the kind of players who turn up when the going gets tough.

  21. Whilst I agree that Wenger is a good manager, pretty football and 4th place in the EPL can only satisfy fans to an extent. This isn't just about money either. Which fan cares about net spend and club profitability above winning trophies? As a Liverpool supporter, I was grateful to KD last season for showing us that Liverpool could still win something.

    Despite all the good financial work that Wenger has done, how comes arsenal supporters have the most expensive season tickets in the land - £1954 according to the Telegraph? Apparently, LFC's most expensive ticket is £802. Fans are paying through the teeth to not see silverware, and of late, completely abject performances. Surely, that's why they're so angry.

    Nevertheless, I've always said about Liverpool players and staff, when others have been calling for their heads, get rid of them by all means, but only if you can find someone better to replace them with. Is there anyone better for Arsenal right now than Wenger?

  22. Maybe if they sack Wenger they can finally give Moyes the chance at a big club that he deserves and you can become an Arsenal supporter arguing that Henry was a cheat for his handball goal against Ireland...