When dirty linens are laundered in the public glare, we get a good idea of a family’s hygiene.
Such has become the situation of things within the Arsenal squad at the moment, with several revelations coming through, no thanks to the past week of debacle which has seen many opinions come through as to the reasons why things have never improved over the past couple of years and Ian Wright believes one major reason is Wenger’s continued snubbing of Steve Bould’s inputs, especially on potential defensive reinforcements.
The ex-Arsenal defender was raised to the front row of the Gunners bench to seat right next to Wenger himself as the replacement to the legendary Pat Rice. It was believed that Bould’s presence would spark a paradigm shift in Arsenal’s defensive set up in games, having been part of a famous stiff backline under George Graham.
With the passage of the Campbel/Toure/Gilberto eras, Wenger has yet to find a defensive stability which is required to complement his never ending attacking philosophy. Bould has reportedly made frequent suggestions to the manager on whom could have been recruited to enforce this but it appears his inputs have been sent to the spam mail box as things have obviously not got better ever since.
Wright, who was one Bould’s long term pre-Wenger Arsenal teammates, uses a believable degree of certainty to give weight to this claim, but does not go far to support it with any names. You won’t mean many bets trying to figure out who these players might have been – Smalling, Hummels, De Vrij, Reid – but what we know is that it’s either he’s been saying some things that have gone unheeded, or that he has done thing at all.
It is very credible to think that Bould would have made it clear to Wenger that 6 defenders wouldn’t run the task of taking through a whole season’s campaign which, if it is to be successful, will involve over 50 intense games. Having been a center half, he would be of the conviction that Monreal wouldn’t be good enough for big strong attackers, as we saw with Wilfried Bony and Bafetimbi Gomis. Bould probably didn’t support the exit of both Bacary Sagna and Thomas Vermaelen at the same time, especially without earmarked replacements of the same quality and experience. He surely must have been impressed with Calum Chambers since his arrival, but he surely must have said something to Wenger about bringing in Hector Bellerin on Sunday when it became obvious that he was being laid on a barbeque by Jefferson Montero.
Bould appears to be just one of other members of Wenger’s coaching crew who are not given an avenue to air their opinions about the team, as some other reports have suggested. It is bad enough that we are going through this period of misunderstanding on the pitch but any hopes of that becoming rectified soon will be torn to shreds if there exists any genuine disharmony in those rooms we don’t see every day.
Especially between the two who are supposed to be seat mates in the dugout.
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