Wenger Is Bringing Arsenal Back To Prominence

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    Updated: July 11, 2014
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    What a difference a year makes in sports. 12 months can mean a lot for any team in any sport. In a year, a team can go from kings of the castle, to just also-rans in the blink of an eye. Players come, players go, chemistry changes and life moves on. But at Arsenal FC, for nearly a decade nothing seemed to change at the club. The once European power from North London seemed to be trapped in some strange time-warp/Ground Hog’s Day that they endured every single season. 4th place finishes, selling off captains and key-players, not competing for trophies, and balancing books for the good of the club. But in the summer of 2013 there was a glitch in the matrix. Something drastic happened that was un-Arsenal like during the trophy drought. Hope. And since then it’s been a steady climb back towards prominence for Arsenal FC. And it’s been a long time coming.


    Arsenal FC: Back For The First Time…


    At this point last summer, Arsenal FC fans were losing their minds over who would be coming to the club in the summer transfer window. Like every year during the trophy drought, fans were worried Arsene Wenger would bring in fringe players and sell off more of our top class players for a bargain. Gooners had witnessed as summer after summer Arsenal sold Cesc Fabregas, Alex Song, Samir Nasri and Robin Van Persie. Wenger went after prized players like Gonzalo Higuain and Luis Gustavo and whiffed on both. It was not the start the Gooners were looking for in the transfer window. Meanwhile hated Rivals Tottenham Spuds were buying players left and right. At the time us Gooners were shocked that little brother Tottenham was actually being ambitious and purchasing “class” players while Arsenal were missing out on our big targets.

    Had Arsenal really fallen from grace that much that the rivals were more appealing than us? Impossible right? We’re the might Arsenal!…damn. The trophy drought had hit 8 successive seasons and Arsenal’s new trophy was 4th place and just making it into the Champions League qualification round. First game of the season comes about, Arsenal play Aston Villa at the Emirates. After taking the lead, Arsenal loses hold of the game and the Villans go on to win 3-1. Mayhem ensued among Arsenal fans World Wide. No transfers, already losing in trophy drought fashion, and back to fighting for nothing but 4th. Not a fun time. The backlash against Arsene Wenger was at a fever pitch and “WengerOut!” could be heard from London to New York.

    The next league came against Tottenham. A loss to Tottenham and no transfers would have been unimaginable. Looking back at it now I don’t know how terrible it would have been if everything had went south for Arsenal that day. The Gooners beat Tottenham, and as if that wasn’t a weight lifted off our shoulders a bit already, Wenger pulled off the transfer of the summer and purchased Mesut Ozil from Spanish giants Real Madrid. To make it better, the transfer was made possible by Spuds selling away their best player Gareth Bale. The elation around Arsenal fandom worldwide was a spectacle like nothing I had seen from Arsenal in years. We had signed the man Jose Mourinho called “The best number 10 on the planet.” And he belonged to Arsenal.

    Finally, the transfer power Ivan Gadzidis had told everyone was on the horizon was coming to fruition. Finally, Arsenal shut up their critics for a short period and allowed the club to focus on what they did best, playing beautiful football. The Gooners made it to the top of the Premier League and entered the New Year at the top of the table. But again, in typical Arsenal fashion, the second half of the season was a nightmare. All of our top players were injured, Wenger didn’t bring in reinforcements, and the slide to fourth place began. Fun.

    Arsenal was throttled at the hands of Chelsea and Liverpool, the Premier League was a three-horse race, and any hopes of the EPL and Champions League were dashed. The only hope was the FA Cup. Arsenal made it to the FA Cup Final and played against Hull City. After going down 2-0 early in the match, Arsenal dreams seemed dashed once again and the trophy drought seemed to continue. That’s until the team buckled down and got two clutch goals from Santi Cazorla and Laurent Koscielny, and the eventual game winner from Aaron Ramsey:


    And the reaction by Wenger, Bacary Sagna and Per Mertesacker here told the story:


    It was a weight lifted off of all the shoulders of Gooners World Wide. No more trophy drought jokes, no more annoying rival fans throwing an empty Emirates trophy cabinet in our face. No more disappointment and ire and anger. Wenger signed Ozil, and led the Gooners an FA Cup trophy. Now, it’s was time to build.


    Arsene Wenger, The World Cup, And…Beach Transfers??? Hell, Yes…


    Arsenal’s first trophy in 9 years was officially in the bag. With the FA Cup win it was time for Arsenal to do what was necessary to get to the next step and that is winning multiple trophies regularly. One problem, the biggest tournament in sports was being held in Brazil and the World Cup was surely going to delay signings. In that time though, Chelsea managed to sign former Arsenal star Cesc Fabregas and former Atletico Madrid striker Diego Costa. Some Arsenal fans were furious Wenger told Cesc he didn’t need him at the club, but for the sensible Gooners, we knew Wenger was right.

    Where exactly would Cesc play? We had Mesut and Ramsey. I can understand some Gooners were worried that there would be no signings and we let Cesc go to a bitter rival. But with the Ozil transfer the summer before and the FA Cup win, Gooners had to refrain from the WengerOut Mentality and just be calm. There were rumors of Mario Balotelli, Serge Aurier, Alexis Sanchez, Mathieu Debuchy and others signing with Arsenal. Still nothing was done. Then Chile was eliminated from the World Cup and rumors were building that the Chilean International Sanchez was leaving Barcelona for the Emirates. No way.

    While people were criticizing Wenger for hanging out on the beach and doing World Cup broadcasting, there was no way he was signing class player…right? RIGHT??? Wrong, so wrong. It was announced yesterday that Arsenal had signed Sanchez from Barca, and that Matthew Debuchy would not be far behind in the transfer window. Keep in mind we are still in early July. That’s Mesut Ozil, and Alexi Sanchez in back to back summers without Arsenal shipping off any of our current World Class talent. And the one master swoop people never discuss is how Wenger also locked up Arsenal’s young British core of Theo Walcott, Aaron Ramsey, Jack Wilshere, Kieran Gibbs, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Carl Jenkinson.

    The man has been setting the foundation for the Club for years and now he’s simply building on it. Again, the transfer window is still in full swing. There are still about 6 weeks left to bring the likes of French International Loic Remy and German International Sami Khedira amongst others. All this while the man himself Arsene Wenger is having the time of his life in Rio De Janeiro. And every player that signs with Arsenal always says the same thing, they came to Arsenal for one reason, to play for Arsene Wenger. Wenger’s pulling power is not a myth; it’s a staple of his legend. Players want to play for him and with the addition of top players regularly, that Wenger pulling power is on it’s way back to pre-trophy drought era. These are fun times again at Arsenal, and with the possibility of Lukas Podolski, Per Mertesacker and Ozil returning with a World Cup medal, the squad will be full of winners who are hungry for more.

    The mighty Arsenal is back on the rise ladies and gentlemen. It was a tough time during what I like to call “The Dark Ages” during the trophy drought. But things have changed and will continue to get better. No More WengerOut, now it should only be UpTheArsenal. And that’s the way it should always be.

    And as always, “In Arsene We Trust.” Wenger you amazingly cheeky basterd.

    Follow @LSN_Frantz on Twitter


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