I’d like to start my letter to you by saying Merry Christmas and if I don’t speak to you before-hand Happy New Year. I’d also like to thank you for your efforts over the last 12 years. Under your guidance, we have won league titles, FA cups and reached the UEFA cup and Champions League finals. We have played some amazing football under your reign and at times been mesmeric, at times been magical and at times been unbeatable. We’ve moved into our new stadium. A 60,000+ start of the art all seater stadium in the heart of London.
I’m a big fan of Arsenal and you as manager and like many other fans, have Arsenal in my blood, in my veins and above all in my heart. I, like many other fans, pay the highest prices in the league. I, like many other fans, buy silly little mugs and slippers, heavily over-priced but in knowledge that money is going to the club. I’ve travelled around Europe following our team, I’ve spent hours upon hours on the motorway, in traffic, missed trains, spent money on hotels, petrol… and all for you and our team.
I was born in North London and to me, Arsenal are my local club, my community, my football club. I’ve supported us when we’ve been mid-table, when we’ve just finished fourth, when we’ve been knocked out of the cup by Burnley, when we lost 6-1 to our main rivals, and of course when we’ve won those lovely titles. I will always support the team, I will always spend my earnings on Arsenal, I will always come down to the ground and I will always buy a programme every single game.
So, as we sit here with our families and friends, remembering those without, I ask you Arsene, please give me the Christmas present that me and all other fans deserve. We have a team packed with youth and potential. We have some players who aren’t young any more. A Togo International at the age of 24 / 25 isn’t young. Wilshere at 16 is young. Our team has a youth policy and we like it. We’re proud to see our kids beat Wigan. Believe me, we are proud. But we also have experience and knowledge. Most of us fans have got decades of watching the team behind them, many of us watch other games, sky sports news and play pro evolution soccer and football manager. Yes, not many of us are managers, but we know football and we know our team.
We’ve been very close to winning the Champions League. Last season we all said buy one more player, but we didn’t and we missed out on the league by 4 points. We have the basis for a great team.
Arsene, the present we want is the player we were missing from last season and a replacement for some of the departing players. If you can buy one defensive midfielder and one wide player, then the players we have will not be pushed away, they will embrace and learn and become better players. Denilson will be a better player if playing alongside a Barry or Alonso rather than a Diaby and a Song. Song will become a better player when fighting for his place in the team rather than walking into a “top four” team. Wilshere, I’m sure, could learn a few things from a Ribery.
We seem to have an injury jinx, and with Rosicky, Cesc and Walcott out of the team for a while, and Nasri and Eduardo patchy for the next 4-6 weeks, we really have to dip into the transfer market if we want to finish in the top four. But if the players we buy are right and the aforementioned players come back from injury, then we may still have a shout at the title. Maybe. But it’s going to take a lot of hard work to do so. It’s amazing that we’re only 8 points behind the leaders. And maybe it says a lot about our form when Liverpool are leading the table.
I’m not criticising you or telling you how to do your job, but some things are blindingly obvious in football and buying at least 2 players is the minimum requirement this January. We can see it on the pitch. We have such a good set of players, but we’re just short in a few areas. You’ve said several times that we need “an extra body” or “another midfielder” but you’ve been reluctant to spend. The board say there is money and that you can spend it.
So, this Christmas, please think about the club, where we are, and think about the fans. Please buy the two players you need and then maybe buy the other two players we all want.
Give us all a Christmas present that we deserve.