Football is cyclical. Arsene Wenger’s arrival at Arsenal in 1996 marked the beginning of the end for English football’s Proper Football Men. The Frenchman modernised the sport in the country, moving it away from the out-dated punt and pint culture. So it was fitting that a man steeped in this culture should provide Wenger with the nadir of his Arsenal career to date.
Sam Allardryce is the anti-Wenger. He’s a manager for the Brexit age, with his tactics just as crude as those used by the ‘Leave’ campaign. Despite their crudeness, Wenger, just like the ‘Remain’ camp, couldn’t handle them, with Crystal Palace not so much parking a bus with a gigantic false campaign promise on it, but ploughing it through the Arsenal defence.
If Allardyce is now the embodiment of the zeitgeist perhaps Arsenal should look for their own variation to replace Wenger. What’s Tony Adams up to these days?
The gaffer tapes
"No." That was Wenger’s one word, one syllable response to Geoff Shreeve’s prod for more detail on the Arsenal manager’s future. If only he’d followed up that “no” with “new contract” and he might have appeased the Gooners who had just seen their team dispatched by relegation-threatened Crystal Palace.
Instead, speculation continues to swirl around Wenger, dragging down Arsenal as a club in the process. Whatever happens, whether Wenger stays or goes, you can count on an Arsenal Fan TV live broadcast outside the Emirates for the announcement. They’ve already started scripting their rants.
Mind games corner
Jose Mourinho’s playground bully act has been difficult to watch at times. First it was Henrikh Mkhitaryan, squeezing the Armenian’s juice box until it burst. Then it was Luke Shaw, shaking all the lunch money from the full-back’s pockets. On the basis of the weekend win over Sunderland though, Mourinho’s bully-boy tactics have worked.
Both Mkhitaryan and Shaw turned in their best displays of the season at the Stadium of Light, with Manchester United running out 3-0 winners to keep alive their slim hopes of finishing in the top four. Mourinho has always been one for mind games, but at this rate his next move will see him give a member of his squad a wedgie.
Feud of the week
Read the full article on eurosport.co.uk: Battle of the Bosses: Tony Adams to replace Arsene Wenger?