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They Didn't Come to Bury Wenger

By Boris Mellor
April 22 2018

The happy crowd had not come to bury Wenger, the intention was to praise him, it was a sunny day at The Arsene Wenger Stadium, recently renamed by Paul Merson. There was a holiday atmosphere, and it was the first time in ages that I had to queue to get in via the bag check line.

I only managed to get in with a minute to spare, so I don’t know if Arsene got a special cheer before the game started. Everyone I met felt it was important to give him a good send off, but no one was sure what that would be. After all this was the man Who Came, Didn’t See It, and Conquered (Apologies to the Guardian), or The Emperor as some of the directors affectionately call him behind his back. A little bit like Hadrian, he was possibly undermined by a massive building project and, finally, against his wishes forced to retreat.

Like Hadrian he completely changed English leisure activities, Hadrian banned mixed bathing and introduced Pasta, Wenger banned drinking and introduced Brocoli, but I digress.


As I was saying the crowd had come to praise him, but not quite as many as I had first thought. Tickets had finally sold out on the news of Wenger’s resignation, but the news came too late for many season ticket holders to cancel the activities they now enjoy on the these free weekends.

There was a rumour of a standing ovation of 22 minutes at the start of the game, or was it on 22 minutes? Either way it didn’t happen.

So the ground was about a quarter empty, or three quarters full (depending on whether you are a WOB or an AKB) with a very well packed Hammers section, after all they still have something to play for. They sang some malodorous ditty about Wenger, I didn’t catch it, but the Arsenal crowd responded with “He’s won more than you, he’s won more than you” the praise had begun. However the team decided to spoil it all by playing boring dire crab football so it was 0-0 at half time, but the attempt to bury Arsene failed and the crowd remained onside, and there was no booing at half time.

At half time I noticed my neighbours had a programme with Merci Arsene on the front page. I was somewhat surprised that the memorial edition was out so early, seems that some folks couldn’t wait for the burial. I tried to buy one but they it had sold out completely. Apparently fans were seen buying them in bulk.

It just goes to show that resigning is just as good for reviving sales as retiring, which was what Frank Sinatra did every time his sales dropped. So perhaps this resignation is just a good sales ploy.

It only took six minutes for Monreal to put his foot through the boredom and put Arsenal ahead, and only 13 minutes for the Hammers to equalise. Arsenal then lived dangerously for the next 18 minutes, with a combination of wasting chances and giving away others. A young fan in front of me was brilliant, urging the team on whilst cursing every missed chance. Meanwhile the Hammer fans began to gloat, always a mistake, beware of Hubris. They did the usual clichés about the quietness of Arsenal fans, then suddenly in only 7 minutes the Gunners in machine gun rapidity put way three glorious goals, well two glorious goals and a strange one by Ramsey. The crowd roared and cheered.

Now some of the crowd actually sang One Arsene Wenger, possibly half of them, if you are an AKB, but half didn’t if you are a WOB, but it was such a long time since it had been sang that not all could remember the words. Wenger remained unmoved.


I looked across to the away enclosure and it was three quarters empty, and even an optimist wouldn’t argue with that. The remaining Arsenal fans celebrated joyfully.

After the game, in the Bank, after a cursory discussion of where we were when we heard he had resigned, and what a wonderful job he had done, except when he didn’t, we got around to the real business, discussing who the next manager should be. The weirdest suggestion was Maradonna, the mover felt that things might go better with Coke. Conte was another favourite as it was felt he dresses well, is passionate and has a great line in Bon Mots; especially calling Mourinho small was felt to be up to the standard needed at a prestigious club.

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They Didn't Come to Bury Wenger
Arsenal Times (IP Logged)
22/04/2018 20:04
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Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 2018:04:26:09:17:06 by Padre Pio.

 
Re: They Didn't Come to Bury Wenger
Padre Pio (IP Logged)
22/04/2018 20:14
Sorry for this appearing twice, and for errors and possibly lost posts. I have contacted admin



- until Wenger moves on, they'll always be the also-rans in the major competitions. A club in elite purgatory. Always good enough to make it to the big race, never fast or smart enough to push over the finish line in first place. That's all about the manager. Until he changes, Arsenal fans will continue to celebrate glorious failure.

 
Re: They Didn't Come to Bury Wenger
MattySadler (IP Logged)
22/04/2018 22:07
Very good.

I had to work today but I listened to the game on talksport and it sounded like a bit of a strange atmosphere.

I'm not sure why I was expecting the players to suddenly play with the handbrakes off and tear West Ham apart, clearly I'd forgot that we're rubbish. Most unconvincing 4-1 ever.

I've spent much of the last few years hopeful that Wenger will do what is needed in the transfer market, and found himself let down time and time again. At least with Wenger going I can be hopeful that the new guy's priority will be a new first choice goalkeeper, at least three first choice defenders (sick of Monreal and Koscielny as well. Bellerin is on his final warning) and a couple of midfielders.

 
Re: They Didn't Come to Bury Wenger
Padre Pio (IP Logged)
22/04/2018 23:27
There are some typos, but the technical issues wore me out and I could see no point in correcting them until the problem is resolved.
The point about the crowd not booing at half time proves a point, with Wenger going there was no need to boo. It was always him they had been booing not the team. The crowd also failed to provide as much praise as was expected, maybe they will warm up by Burnley Game but his latest attack on the fans might put that on hold



- until Wenger moves on, they'll always be the also-rans in the major competitions. A club in elite purgatory. Always good enough to make it to the big race, never fast or smart enough to push over the finish line in first place. That's all about the manager. Until he changes, Arsenal fans will continue to celebrate glorious failure.

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