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Is it time for Arsenal fans to praise Stan Kroenke for a change?

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A Silence of Convenience by Neil Watson

I am fairly confident this article will meet with a record number of aggrieved reactions and disparaging comments because the truth is often the most uncomfortable thing to admit. One of the best lessons you can teach the young is ‘learn from your mistakes’ and ‘be honest when you are wrong’. In that way you can learn and as a consequence you will grow mentally. By not admitting when you are wrong means you choose not to learn.

And so let’s get down to it. Stan Kroenke and the senior management of our club. The management that have spent in excess of 150 million pounds in players in the last 2 years.

When things were very bad within our club we, as fans, blamed the manager and the owners. In truth the inner issues of a club can be speculated on by fans but we never ever know. None of us know why Ozil has such a bad run of form, why Sanchez was so keen to go anywhere… loads of things involving Ramsay, Jack, Bellerin…..

So now we find ourselves on a run of form that was last achieved 7 seasons back. The same owner yet a different manager and a few new players.

In reality should fans not be congratulating the owner and senior management for securing the services of a manager that, if form is any guide, was unjustly ignored as manager of the month? Let’s be honest was he on top of anyone’s lists when the club were looking for a replacement for Wenger? Some might say he’s had easy fixtures to accommodate and they’d be right but even the easy ones need to be won. You can do no more than win them regardless of how many goals you score.

I’m part of the majority of Arsenal fans who think poorly of Kroenke. We see him turn up at the occasional home game and have zero connection with the fans. I think most of us assume, probably quite rightly, that his ownership of our club is purely for personal gain. But isn’t that the point?

The undeniable point here is that if you’re going to blame someone individually for our team playing terribly you have to praise that same person when things turn around and the results go in your favour. We were terrible and so the manager was changed, a few new players were bought and we then went on a run. We look sharp on the pitch, the team play with smiles on their faces and we can look across London at our noisy neighbours and feel for the first time in a few years our ship is once again sailing in the right direction whereas they maybe about to embark on something less pleasant.

At the end of this season we will be able to judge Kroenke for the first time without there being an existing structure in place since the day he arrived. The Wenger regime is well and truly over and we are seeing how well the senior management and ownership can run our club and what will transpire as a consequence of their new found freedom.

To précis, and stay focused on this point when commenting, if you’re like me and most, who vehemently criticised Kroenke for causing the crisis within our club over the past couple of years then surely you have to accept that the current success we are enjoying is at the very least partially due to the new structure within the club that his money created.


Neil Watson

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[Image] No Lacazette or Ozil – How Arsenal should line-up vs Everton

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dani ceballos arsenal

Arsenal take on Everton at the Emirates on Sunday afternoon. Here’s the line-up I’d like Mikel Arteta to select…

We’ve kept three consecutive clean sheets so we shouldn’t tinker too much with the back four. David Luiz has been very good recently and fair play to Shkodran Mustafi too as he’s put-in some solid performances.

I’m a big Rob Holding fan and would like to see him playing more but right now it’s hard to argue that Luiz and Mustafi shouldn’t start, especially as Sokratis picked up a knee injury on Thursday and is a major doubt for the Everton game while Pablo Mari is lacking match fitness.

Bukayo Saka continues to be a revelation at left-back after grabbing another assist in the Europa League so he deserves to keep his place while Hector Bellerin should return at right-back after being rested in midweek.

Torreira returns

Lucas Torreira missed Arsenal’s win over Olympiacos due to illness but he’s expected to be back in contention to face Everton and I think he should come straight back in to partner Granit Xhaka.

Matteo Guendouzi didn’t really grasp his opportunity after being recalled against Olympiacos following his bust-up with Arteta so the Frenchman should drop to the bench.

nicolas pepe arsenal

Mesut Ozil missed the trip to Greece to be with his wife for the birth of their baby and it’s unknown whether he’ll be available on Sunday. With the inevitable sleepless night’s that come with newborns, Ozil probably won’t be in any state to start! Therefore, I’d go with Dani Ceballos in the advanced midfield position as Joe Willock was disappointing against Olympiacos.

Lacazette out

Alexandre Lacazette grabbed the all-important away goal in Athens but I still don’t think we can justify playing Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang out wide any longer. He’s our best goalscorer so let’s start him through the middle.

That would allow Gabriel Martinelli to play from the left wing where he’s been far more productive as I think he’s struggled on the right in recent matches.

In addition, Martinelli switching flanks will pave the way for Nicolas Pepe to be recalled and I actually think Martinelli/Auba/Pepe is our best and most balanced front three right now.

Arsenal will have the likes of Reiss Nelson and Eddie Nketiah on the bench along with Lacazette if needed.

Here is how I hope Arsenal line-up:

football formations



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Premier League fixtures: Man Utd, Liverpool, Arsenal and Chelsea find out April TV changes

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Sky Sports have announced their latest batch of Premier League fixtures to be broadcast in April. The key match of next month is undoubtedly the clash between defending title holders Manchester City and champions-elect Liverpool.

City will welcome Jurgen Klopp’s side to the Etihad Stadium on April 5, with their match kicking off at 4:30pm.

The game is a pivotal one for the Reds – who top the league by 22 points – as it could see them crowned champions of England for the first time in 30 years.

The second north London of the season will also be broadcast by Sky on April 26, with Arsenal travelling to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on April 26.

The full list of fixtures to be broadcast by Sky in April can be seen below.

Fri April 10: Newcastle vs West Ham (8pm)

Sat April 11: Tottenham vs Everton (5.30pm)*

Sun April 12: Chelsea vs Watford (2pm)*

Sun April 12: Liverpool vs Aston Villa (4.30pm)*

Mon April 13: Wolves vs Arsenal (8pm)

Sat April 18: Crystal Palace vs Chelsea (12.30pm)*

Sat April 18: Arsenal vs Leicester (5.30pm)*

Sun April 19: Sheff Utd vs Wolves (2pm)*

Sun April 19: Aston Villa vs Man Utd (4.30pm)*

Mon April 20: Brighton vs Liverpool (8pm)*

Sat April 25: Brighton vs Man City (5.30pm)*

Sun April 26: Sheff Utd vs Chelsea (2pm)*

Sun April 26: Tottenham vs Arsenal (4.30pm)*

Mon April 27: Aston Villa vs Crystal Palace (8pm)

*subject to progression in the Champions League

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Man City vs Liverpool moved as Sky and BT reveal April's TV fixtures

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Liverpool’s Premier League title showdown with Manchester City among games moved in April as Sky and BT reveal latest TV picks while first north London derby at Tottenham’s new stadium is also switched 

  • The Premier League has confirmed which games in April will be shown on TV
  • Manchester City will host Liverpool on April 5 as the Reds look to secure the title 

The Premier League has confirmed the games to be shown on live TV in April, with Manchester City hosting Liverpool at 4:30pm on Sunday April 5 on Sky Sports. 

Towards the end of the month, the north London derby will be shown at 4:30 on Sky Sports on April 26, as Tottenham host Arsenal

Sheffield United vs Wolves will also be shown on Sky Sports on the afternoon of April 19 as the two teams try and chase down a European spot for next season. 

More to follow 

Liverpool versus Manchester City is one of the games to be moved for live TV in April 2020

Liverpool versus Manchester City is one of the games to be moved for live TV in April 2020



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