From Norrie : The Champions League
Happy New Year!
A genuine question: if the title charge is being led this season by Liverpool and Chelsea – neither in the Champions League – and was won last season by Leicester, and almost the season before by Liverpool (neither of whom were in the CL) are Arsenal automatically handicapped each season with the ‘guaranteed’ top four finishes under Wenger?
It seems ironic that the virtues of Wenger teams at their strongest – freshness, speed – are undermined by the thing for which he is most praised: continuous qualification for a competition which hinders his ability to compete.
Very good point, Norrie.
By being in the Round of 16 every year, Arsenal can never surprise opponents.
Because every team and every manager knows how they play. They know that Wenger uses overlapping full back to give him width and an extra man in key area of the front third, and that his squad practices rapid passing moves almost every day of every week.
Arsenal FC exists for 2 reasons: (1) as a vehicle for his ideas and (2) to keep him in his unique and lucrative job.
His aim has always been to stay where he is, to get another contract.