Despite a tumultuous beginning to the Premier League season, Arsenal has no plans to part ways with manager Arsene Wenger.
Former MLS deputy commissioner and current Arsenal chief executive Ivan Gazidis spoke out on behalf of Wenger, who is under even more scrutiny after the club's 4-3 loss to Blackburn over the weekend dropped the team's league record to 1-3-1.
"Arsene Wenger is not broken," Gazidis told the BBC. "To see him portrayed as an idiot is damaging – not to him or the club but to the game. [Sacking him] is a route we are not going to go down.
"He didn't suddenly become a bad manager or out of touch. That's nonsense."
Here are a few more stories from around the soccer world:
FABREGAS GETS MAGAZINE APOLOGY
After publishing alleged derogatory comments made by Cesc Fabregas about Arsenal, Sport magazine has confessed that no interview with Fabregas ever took place, and the quotes were all fabricated.
The magazine issued a statement, saying: "We published an article described as an interview with Cesc Fabregas. In fact, there was no actual interview (the player was speaking at two press events) and Fabregas did not say the words attributed to him, including and in particular about Arsenal. We were unaware of these matters when we published the article which was written by a freelance journalist. We apologise profusely to Mr. Fabregas for any damage caused."
Fabregas had openly defended himself via his Twitter account, claiming that the quotes were all lies and that he never said anything to defame Arsenal. He said that he will donate the financial compensation that Sport is paying him for the damages to charity.
DROBGA SET FOR WEDNESDAY RETURN
Didier Drogba's spell on the sidelines after suffering a concussion will come to an end on Wednedsay, as he has been named to Chelsea's squad for the club's Carling Cup match against Fulham.
Andre Villas-Boas has named a reserve-laden team, but he will give the Ivory Coast striker a chance to work his way back into the rotation after spending the last three weeks out of action.
MATTHAUS OUT AS BULGARIA COACH
Former German international and New York/New Jersey MetroStars player Lothar Matthaus was fired as coach of the Bulgarian national team after failing to get Bulgaria to qualify for Euro 2012.
Bulgaria only won once in seven qualifying matches against England, Montenegro, Switzerland and Wales, scoring just three goals in that time.
What do you make of Gazidis' comments? Do you think Wenger deserves to be fired? What do you make of the fabricated Fabregas situation? How much of an impact do you think a healthy Drogba can make for Chelsea? Disappointed in Matthaus' Bulgaria stint?
Share your thoughts below.
Sounds like Barca.
SAF is putting a bizarre line-up out there today. Only two natural defenders in the starting line-up…one of which is Fabio.
And if you’re comparing Wenger and SAF based on antics as the basis for not being fired, you may remember that SAF has won 12 league titles, two Champions League, and I think four FA cups. I think they can deal with his “antics”…
except we can’t buy finishers :
And the point of mentioning SAF was? How is that relevant to anything about Wenger?
Or develop a couple tough holding mids and center backs instead of French finesse players and hold onto players once they are worth money.
Arsenal don’t want to spend millions on over-priced players and are paying (pun intended!) for this mistake. They are essentially a youth team competing with grown men, that’s why they suck. I’m not a supporter, but a fan of their system, however they need to spend some more money.
lol sounds like our setup under Klinsmann.
Except for the last sentence, you hit the nail on the head.
Wenger has hardly shown the antics of Ferguson who famously kicked a boot into Beckham’s face after a loss to Arsenal. It was after that incident that Beckham left ManU.
So far when I’ve watched Arsenal this year, except against ManU, they have been able to hold the ball and create chances. It is finishing those chances (and creating a few more) that has been poor. And yes, the defensive lapses are truly awful. Until Arsenal pay to bring in better goal-scorers and a few defenders who can pay attention they will likely do no better with any manager.
While it does pain me a bit as an Arsenal fan, I find no fault with this.
“He didn’t suddenly become a bad manager or out of touch. That’s nonsense.-Gazidis”
No, in fact it’s been a steady decline of poor decisions in the transfer market or lack thereof.
Wenger is a brilliant tactician but in the transfer windows he relies far too often on excuses for avoiding the purchasing of players with greater stature and stronger voices in the lockerroom. They’ve had money to spend for several years now and that has been reflected in interviews and statements by the board.
There’s a reason he’s known as the professor and there’s a reason he primarily goes for kids. The man isn’t a good leader of *men* and this is reflected every time in his post game interviews and his long list of child excuses for his team getting beat. There’s simply not accountability. It’s always “Well, Stoke City simply didn’t want to play football. It’s shameful” Meanwhile, Stoke City took 3 points from you….Wenger. (previous year reference)
No one follows him and it’s obvious why. The man wilts like a typical Frenchman.
Kiss of death for Wenger. I think Gazidis is putting him on notice.