So who remembers how I ended last week’s blog…
‘…Here’s hoping for more news next week.’
Well later that afternoon my ‘wish’ came true as RVP dropped a bombshell on his own website by announcing he would not be signing a new contract. (Apologies if you’ve read all this before and I’m covering old ground but I wanted to say my two cents.)
‘I’ve thought long and hard about it, but I have decided not to extend my contract.’
First thoughts? Oh Sh*t but I’m not surprised. No news isn’t typically good news in this situation and the longer this dragged on, the more unlikely it became that we would see a positive outcome. It was only after hearing the conclusion of the statement that I started to pick out parts of the full statement.
I’m not going to pick out words and phrases to analyse it a week on but the general tone of the email shocked me then and still puzzles me now. In essence, RVP was questioning the clubs policy and set up. Some will argue he has every right to question the off pitch activity (or lack of it) if this is a concern to him but there is a way to express your concerns.
Ok fine, you’ve made the decision not to renew and you want to move, guess what? you’re not the first and I can guarantee you won’t be the last. Once you’ve told the club your final decision, allow them to hold a press conference or issue a public statement informing all. Through this process the club are able to maintain a strong bargaining hand when negotiating the transfer but more importantly RVP is able to keep the bond with the club and fans he has told us all about over the last few seasons. We’re not stupid, we understand players move on and want to continue their careers elsewhere. We would love to see RVP see out his career at the Arsenal and go down as one of the all time greats, why? Because we’re selfish passionate fans who only think of our one love, The Arsenal. Like with Henry and others before, he could have walked off under bit of a cloud but eventually welcomed back as part of the family.
Too late now. The statement was designed to create a stir and to make his position as club captain, lest we forget, untenable. He/his advisors clearly acted without the clubs knowledge and wanted to ensure that they drew the first punch. That first punch floored the club who reacted with a statement shortly afterwards, but by then RVP’s camp had created the stir they wanted. Fans were furious at the lack of respect show by our captain toward the club and more importantly, his manager who had stuck by him for eight