It’s been another year of ups and downs for Arsenal in 2013 so with the year in retrospect, here are some resolutions for 2014.
2013 saw the Arsenal fan base fracture somewhat in the difficult periods especially during the frustrating summer transfer window – the tabloid press were instantly painting the picture of ‘in-fighting’ between discontented sets of supporters as the direction the club was headed in looked unclear.
The ‘in-fighting’ at the top between the two majority stakeholders seemed to set the tone but after this summer’s transfer splash on record signing Mesut Ozil, the fans are now on the same page in support of the manager and, for the most part, the owner.
That period of turmoil and turbulence last season as the Gunners crashed out of the domestic cups had many questioning whether Arsene Wenger was still the man capable of bringing trophies back to the Emirates.
There seemed to be confusion about whether he was stubbornly not spending money that was available or whether that money was in fact not available.
The 10-game unbeaten run at the end of last term that saw the Gunners make fourth place restored some of the faith in the Frenchman. Then the signing of Ozil, in which the boss was revealed as the key component in convincing the German to join, had the fans right back behind the boss as they had been for since he arrived in 1996.
Don’t write players off
Another person who the fans lost faith in and patience with was young Aaron Ramsey who had been written off for some poor performances following his return from injury in the past couple of seasons.
This term, the Welshman proved all his doubters wrong to show he is a complete midfielder with all the attributes of a world-class footballer – all he needed was a bit of confidence and now he’s like a machine. He’s the current top scorer for Arsenal and he’s been one of the Premier League’s best players this term.
With that in mind, the fans should give the time and patience Wenger has shown in Ramsey to the likes of Jack Wilshere who is in a very similar position to Ramsey after returning from injury and extend that trust and faith to the likes of Wojceich Szczesny, Kieran Gibbs, Lukas Podolski, captain Thomas Vermaelen, young Yaya Sanogo, and even Nicklas Bendtner.
Show your class
Arsenal are a classy club and even rival fans and bosses know it – Sir Alex Ferguson said it last season when the Gunners gave the champions the guard of honour at the Emirates. ‘Form is temporary, class is permanent’ is the ever-present banner at the Emirates and the fans should remember that they represent the club they love.
Fans tempted to sing distasteful songs about former players like Robin van Persie should remember those songs were made and used by rival fans against Arsenal and they do not represent the club in the manner it deserves. Show your class and don’t stoop to a level beneath you, even if it’s fun for a bit, it’s not in line with the club’s traditions and ethos that make Arsenal a club that people all over the world admire.
image: © wonker