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Wenger and the One Commandment


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Did you catch it? You know, that Tablet of Stone dropped from Mount Emirates by Arsene Wenger earlier this week? Admittedly it was a bit heavy and hard to take (anywhere, anytime), but at least it was only one and the Media were quick to get themselves under it and cart it back to deliver to the waiting masses. In short (and it was) the words chiselled out a simply, but profound message - “Thou Shalt Be English†- it read, and, with that pronouncement on who should be the next manager of the England team, he was gone from the FA’s midst. Many followers stayed on at the Emirates base camp waiting in vain for further tablets, none daring to ask the fount of all football knowledge if there were indeed further words of wisdom to come, such as a committal - “He Shalt Be Big Sam†- or merely just a move in mysterious ways with “He Shalt Be Big†- might have given us all a sign. God knows Brian Barwick needs one.

But lo, it wasn’t to be and further news came there none, unless, of course, the great Arsene is asked to expand on his previous commandment at today’s pre-match press conference, which wont happen because his omnipotence somehow transcends all awkward questions at such gatherings. It is why next week he will never be asked to explain his appalling record against that particular opposing team and its manager or why his only quote on who should be the next England manager sounds less like “He Shalt Be English†and more like “He Shalt Not Be Jose Mourinhoâ€. There, blasphemous or not, I’ve said it and will just have to hope retribution, if it comes from On High, is swift.

Lord knows, even if the FA doesn’t, that seeking advice from the Great Entertainer, together with assorted reasonably Good losers and Fergie, always leads to a multitude of opinions expressed, only in this instance it didn’t and nearly everybody asked came down heavily in favour of the Special One. Except for the Omnipotent One of course who, even though speaking in tongues, made it clear that others are more suitable because of their nationality. It would appear that he believes, where football in this country is concerned, nationality counts when it comes to your manager, although a marked lack of English talent within the ranks of its leading football team is not only acceptable, but preferable. After all, why pursue a policy of encouraging players with inferior technique when you not only don’t have to, but also get asked to pontificate on the current state of affairs AND get a say in who has to sort out the mess!

Acting as Devil’s Advocate, it is clear to me that the worst case scenario for those believing in the Word of Wenger would be for Jose to make a triumphant return to English football and make that much needed root and branch assault on the FA set-up, exposing as it will the prejudice that has allowed some clubs to simply walk away from their responsibilities to the National team without reproach. In the past David Dein has been the buffer within the FA against which all criticism of Arsenal has floundered whilst at the same time allowing all praise of Wenger’s foreign legion to flourish. However, the prospect of Mourinho going through Soho Square like a dose of salts, cleansing the place of its pomposity and ultimately lauding those other clubs who have nurtured English talent over the last decade, would not be a pleasant one for the leading club not mentioned in dispatches.

Imagine also the concern of the Gunner’s major media admirers, the BBC, should Jose get his feet under an FA table - denied Premiership interviews with Fergie for years, they would then go to the other extreme, being faced with truth ’Mourinho style’ in response to the platitudes churned out by the likes of Garry Richardson and his crew. Small wonder the Corporation are still clinging to the hope that Martin O’Neill has a change of heart. They needn’t worry too much, though, because Auntie Beeb will almost certainly be saved embarrassment by sweet Uncle FA, who will ultimately do just that, thereby leaving the rest of us poor suckers to do what all governing bodies and the Media think we do best - keep taking the tablets.

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Someone seriously considering a limit on the amount of foreign players a club can field would no doubt damage Arsenal's set-up from top to bottom.

I wonder who'd have the balls to suggest and implement it? our FA - no way.

But with Jose calling the shots.....???

Nah - I still reckon they'll Copp-out!

Another quality post from Dorset happy0034.gif

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Great post as per usual, my one point of difference though is that if selected Jose will do anything other than manage the player he selects to represent our country at the highest level. He really really will not ride rough-shod over the FA, he's not going to change the shape of the national set-up, he not going to force arsenal to play English players and he's not going to rid us of Brian effin Barwick.

Much as I'd like him to do all those things he will be employed to manage the players he selects that are of English origin, and nothing else.

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The idea that JM would be appointed and then go on to wash away all the rot and incompetence in the FA is a lovely thought, but it aint gonna happen. The FA will always appoint someone they can handle and can keep at a unhealthy distance from its self preserving machinations, there is no way they are gonna risk not being able to keep their snouts deeply in the trough or be challenged by someone with real management ability.

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Well, this is awkward!

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