Jonny Rosenblatt responds to Shreeve slur


I am compelled to respond to Neil Shreeve’s character assassination of December 16th.

For a start, I am a season ticket holder (to lie about this would be odd, at best!) Secondly, I do remember Hillier, Carter, McGoldrick et al. I was at Jimmy Carter’s only good game for Arsenal when he scored 2 versus Southampton.  I was there in 94 when Bolton’s John McGinlay destroyed Arsenal at Highbury in an FA Cup replay. I was at Wembley in 91 when Tottenham humiliated us in the FA Cup Semi. I’ve had to watch Ian Selley, Neil Heaney, Chris Kiwomya and Steve Morrow. But I’ve had the pleasure of watching Anders Limpar, Paul Merson, Tony Adams, and all the Wenger greats. I’ve travelled the country to watch games. I’ve travelled Europe too. I experienced the highs and the lows over the last 20 years. Just like Neil has, I’m sure.

The reason I’m telling you this is because I have every right to give my opinion on this. I like the fact Neil doesn’t agree. It makes football interesting. But I’ve jumped off the Wenger bandwagon, and I can pinpoint two fundamental reasons why. The first was in February 2008, when I (alongside 2000 other Gooners) travelled up to Manchester to watch United humiliate Arsenal 4-0 in an FA Cup tie. Wenger unashamedly threw that game, and it was the biggest insult to Arsenal fans I have ever witnessed. It was a disgrace. There wasn’t even an apology.

The second reason I’m fed up of Wenger’s little project is the following.

In May 2009, after another lacklustre season, I attended a Q&A with Wenger with around 50 other shareholders (famously Wenger lost his nerve that day when one shareholder referred to Silvestre as a geriatric). During the course of that session, Wenger said in no uncertain terms: judge me at the end of next season (i.e. 09/10). If we haven’t won a trophy, I will have to change my whole policy.

Well, Neil, please tell me what we won last season. And Neil, please tell me what has changed this year.

I could have written that open letter any stage this season. The flaws are there for everyone to see. Of the 9 responses my letter received, 8 agreed. I am no less or more of a fan than you, but I’m just fed up of being sold the same old story, whilst paying for the most expensive season tickets in Europe!

This team is so close to greatness, but it needs some serious additions in order to compete. Right now, we are not competing. At best, we are also-rans.

I’ll leave you with a statistic I read in The Evening Standard earlier this week. In the last 11 games against Manchester United and Chelsea, Arsenal have lost 10 and drawn 1. Scored 5, conceded 23. That’s not competing Neil – that’s bending over and taking a spanking.

All the best,