April 24, 2015

Wenger's Passion Is Real

By Michael Clements

There are few things more enjoyable, more satisfying, more karmic that John Terry getting kicked in the face by Abou Diaby. Glorious.

We knew playing Chelsea at the Emirates this season would be an event in one way or another. Of course, we all hoped it would be the match that helped to decide the Premier League title, but it looks as if that's a forgone conclusion at this point. It no longer looks as if this is going to be the saccharine return for Cesc either, as the Spaniard looks so distant in blue. So the only thing left to make this match more interesting and provocative, apparently, is for the Wenger vs Mourinho rivalry to be recycled once again. 

The majority of the footballing world, not being blind, moronic simpletons in blue, know that the Frenchman is generally a classy dude. Of course, if you're a fan of whoever Arsenal happen to play on the day then you might lose sight of the love the man has for his club and mistake his passion for arrogance. You'd be ever so wrong and unfortunate that you haven't someone in charge of your club that loves your club as a fan.

The thing about Arsene Wenger, and the reason he has momentary lapses in judgement on the sidelines (and sometimes in post-match interviews) is that he IS a fan. Wenger has been manager of Arsenal Football Club longer than some have been supporters of this club and at this point he's not just here to collect a paycheck. There was a nice article written here about Arsene's change in mood depending on whether Arsenal win or lose. Sure, it's normal for a manager to get a little snippy when he's just lost a match, but Wenger takes it to another level. A fanatical level. 

There have been stories written about how he gets physically sick after a big loss, and his reluctance to comply fully during post match interviews has become almost legendary. Demanding professionalism from a manager is all well and good, but when that manager invests so much in his club it's hard not to back the man when he's clearly trying to hold in the emotion that we're manifesting on our own couches at home. 

Clearly Mourinho is the more successful manager over the last decade. While I know it's hard for Chelsea fans to really step back and look at the big picture, as it's hard enough for them to eat without feed bags, you've got to ask; if Wenger had the amount of cash available to him that Jose did at Porto, Inter, Real Madrid and Chelski would he have been as successful? Put Mourinho in a position where he has to build a team from youth with little money to spend on outside players, and see if he can compete with teams ran by foreign billionaires and finish in the top four year after year after year.

Manager ability aside, this is a bigger game for Arsenal than it is for Chelsea. Chelsea have all but won the title with a ten point lead at the top. Arsenal have won eight on the trot but haven't been able to beat Chelsea since October 29th, 2011. I'd rather continue the current run of form than put the Chelsea losing streak to bed, but the race for second trumps all achievements at this point. We're a better team than Man United and Citeh so it's our spot to lose. To me, that's got to be our motivation heading into Sunday's match.

Of course, to watch several thousand Chelski fans (most of whom couldn't name the starting line up for you at the pub before the match) have their chauffeurs drive them home miserable after losing to a Alexis Sanchez hatrick would be enjoyable. If, for some reason we don't manage to pull off a win it'll be worth the 90 minutes of our time to watch those same clowns flap about in the Clock End pretending they're real football fans. It's almost cute. 

Let's get stuck in on Sunday and show these Russian wankers what a real football club looks like! 

Come On You Lovely Gunners!!