90min
Arsenal

Arsenal: Who Is to Blame?

By Sean Walsh
Photo credit: Matthew Burt
Photo credit: Matthew Burt
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It's a mystery to everyone at 90min that crisis club Arsenal have never previously featured in our 'Who Is to Blame?' series.

But we'd like to thank the Gunners for plunging to their lowest depths in over two decades and providing us with another opportune time to piece this together.

How thoughtful of them.


30. Ian Wright

Ian Wright
There's a special place in heaven reserved for Wrighty / Getty Images/Getty Images

Blame rating: 0.1/10

Poor Ian Wright, it really isn't fair what his club are doing to him.

Wrighty is one of the most wholesome men on this planet, and as such everyone wants him to be happy. So if there wasn't such massive pressure on Arsenal to succeed to keep him in good spirits, then maybe they wouldn't be such disappointments on the pitch.

29. Emirates

FBL-EUR-C1-ARSENAL-OLYMPIAKOS-STADIUM
How could you do this??? / GLYN KIRK/Getty Images

Blame rating: 0.5/10

Helping finance a new stadium that meant Arsenal fans would lose their club?

How could you be so cruel?

28. Neal Maupay

Matteo Guendouzi, Neal Maupay
Don't even think about it, Matteo / Mike Hewitt/Getty Images

Blame rating: 1/10

Brighton's Neal Maupay insisted that Arsenal's players needed to 'learn humility' after their post-lockdown encounter last year.

Instead, they learned how to humiliate themselves. Excellent team talk, Neal.

27. Wojciech Szczesny's cigarettes

Dusan Tadic, Wojciech Szczesny, Mathieu Debuchy
Images that precede unfortunate events / Michael Steele/Getty Images

Blame rating: 1.5/10

The nail in the goalkeeper's Arsenal coffin came following a horror show away at Southampton, where he was supposedly reprimanded for having a smoke in the shower (not a euphemism).

Szczesny was carted off to Roma soon after, and has since established himself as one of the world's finest stoppers at Juventus. How selfish of him.

26. The media

Arsenal v Wolverhampton Wanderers - Premier League
Look at that evil contraption, capturing every bad move Arsenal make / Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

Blame rating: 2/10

After every bad Arsenal result this season (and believe me, there's been a lot of them), the media lowdown on what's happening inside the club has been known to enrage supporters because the company line is always the same - everything is fine.

If the the best reporters in the country weren't giving inside scoops and analysis so frequently, then maybe fans wouldn't be reminded of how awful their football team actually is.

25. Olivier Giroud

Olivier Giroud
"Thank you, Arsenal!" / Etsuo Hara/Getty Images

Blame rating: 2.5/10

When Giroud retires, he's going to have a medal collection and highlight reel that paints him as one of the true modern greats.

Arsenal fans will remember the man who frustrated them so often in front of goal, and then piled misery on them after leaving.

24. Sir Alex Ferguson

Alex Ferguson - Soccer Coach
Arsenal's arch enemy / Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images

Blame rating: 3/10

While Arsenal are up to their eyeballs in incompetence, Sir Alex Ferguson is still swimming in a sea of glory, with a documentary about his glorious career (much of it at the expense of the Gunners) being released at the end of May.

Must be nice.

23. David Dein

David Dein
Dein left Arsenal over a decade ago, but I'm fairly sure he's behind this mess / Jan Kruger/Getty Images

Blame rating: 3.25/10

Mikel Arteta, looking round the Emirates Stadium at full-time following another disappointing result: And you! I don't know you, but I'm sure you're a jerk!

22. Emmanuel Adebayor

Ammanuel Adebayor
An iconic Premier League moment / Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

Blame rating: 3.5/10

Arsenal's slow decline became quite apparent from this moment onward.

21. Tony Pulis

Tony Pulis
Pulis and his bloody cap / Chris Brunskill/Getty Images

Blame rating: 3.75/10

Close your eyes and imagine Pulis' maniacal laughter. Try and tell me his horrible Stoke sides aren't partly responsible for this.

20. Jackson Martinez's age

Blame rating: 4/10

When Arsenal fans die, they'll be quizzed on how old Jackson Martinez was when he was linked with a move to north London. Their answer will determine where they spend the afterlife.

19. The little boy living inside of Robin van Persie

Robin van Persie, Mikel Arteta
Something poetic about this / Alex Livesey/Getty Images

Blame rating: 4.25/10

"I always listen to the little boy inside of me in these situations – when you have to make the harder decisions in life. What does he want? That boy was screaming for Man Utd."

You won, Robin. Enjoy the Premier League title, I hope it makes you happy.

Dear lord, what a sad little life, Robin.

18. Cesc Fabregas

Cesc Fabregas
He was the chosen one / Chris Brunskill/Getty Images

Blame rating: 4.5/10

Arsenal fans born between 1995 and 1999 will remember their first heartbreak well - when Fabregas decided he'd had enough and returned to Barcelona in 2011.

It shapes the sort of people they are today - ones of hopelessness.

17. Vince McMahon

Oh My God Reaction GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

Blame rating: 5/10

Since the return of football last June, Arsenal have made a habit of playing WWE entrance music before the start of second halves at the Emirates Stadium. And ever since, the Gunners have been woeful at home.

If Vince McMahon had simply disbanded the WWE anytime in the last 25 years, then maybe the stadium workers wouldn't be so quick to choose songs to play that they had only seen on Monday Night Raw.

16. Thomas Partey & Nicolas Pepe

FBL-ENG-PR-ARSENAL-MAN UTD
(Ignore Alexandre Lacazette) / ANDY RAIN/Getty Images

Blame rating: 5.25

This one's a bit harsh. They're both good players, both decent chaps.

But £120m combined for Arsenal to record their lowest league finishes in a generation? Not great transfer business, Bob.

15. The FA Cup

Mikel Arteta, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang
This feels a long time ago now / Marc Atkins/Getty Images

Blame rating: 5.5

So many false dawns have come off the back of winning this bleeding trophy, papering over the cracks and making things look rosy.

Maybe the Super League wasn't such a bad idea...

14. Thierry Henry

Thierry Henry
The greatest player Arsenal have ever had / Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

Blame rating: 5.75/10

Coming in at number 14 is the number 14.

Will come down a few spots if he can help get Daniel Ek's takeover across the line, but we're not banking on it.

13. Edu

Arsenal's Edu celebrates scoring his goa
Getty don't even have images of Edu since re-joining Arsenal as technical director, that's how much of a failure he's been / CARL DE SOUZA/Getty Images

Blame rating: 6/10

Edu the Arsenal player was decent - not amazing, but he did a job.

But unfortunately for the Gunners, he's not so good at his job as technical director. The bar was so low for Edu that fans hailed letting Mesut Özil leave on a free transfer as a masterclass - and they're still paying the German's hefty wages!

Speaking of which...

12. Mesut Özil

Blame rating: 6.25/10

One of the finest players the Premier League has ever seen on his day for sure, but aged like milk down the stretch and his eye-watering contract is still hurting the club.

Now sometimes seen playing left-back for Fenerbahce.

11. Sven Mislintat

FBL-GER-BUNDESLIGA-STUTTGART-BREMEN
Mislintat never really worked out at Arsenal / THOMAS KIENZLE/Getty Images

Blame rating: 6.5/10

This was the man who was supposed to revolutionise the way Arsenal went about their transfer business.

Thanks for Stephan Lichsteiner and Sokratis.

10. Raul Sanllehi

Blame rating: 6.75/10

Fans were enamoured with the Danny DeVito lookalike when he said that when Arsenal knock, 'it is a different knock than other clubs'.

A meaningless quote up there with Ed Woodward insisting he was trying to build a Manchester United team that would 'send shivers down spines'.

9. Shkodran Mustafi

Molde FK v Arsenal FC: Group B - UEFA Europa League
Yes, Shkodran, you / MB Media/Getty Images

Blame rating: 7/10

You'd be hard pressed to find a worse Arsenal signing than Shkodran Mustafi, to find a player so damaging to their club in the Premier League era.

The unlikely World Cup winner was brought in for £35m, made a hilarious string of errors whenever playing that would cost Arsenal a ludicrous number of points, and was shipped off to the worst Schalke team in history in January - where he was dropped for being so awful.

8. Piers Morgan

Piers Morgan
Keep scrolling, you don't have to look at him / Dave J Hogan/Getty Images

Blame rating: 7.25/10

World famous crybaby who tried to force Arsenal upon fellow world famous crybaby Donald Trump. His crimes cannot be forgiven.

7. Mikel Arteta

Mikel Arteta
Here he is, the Lego man / Pool/Getty Images

Blame rating: 7.5/10

Is it Arteta's fault that he took the Arsenal job while hideously under-qualified?

Yes. Yes it is.

6. Unai Emery

Unai Emery
A man who had a very good evening on Thursday / Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

Blame rating: 7.75/10

It was written in the stars that the last man who underperformed at Arsenal would upstage the current man underperforming at Arsenal.

Isn't football just awful?

5. Gunnersaurus

Gunnersaurus
Big G-Rex cares about the club / Pool/Getty Images

Blame rating: 8/10

This prehistoric monstrosity was bleeding the club dry so much that they had to release him back into the wild in the height of lockdown.

'We spend £350m a week on Gunnersaurus - let's fund our summer transfer window instead!' the club bus read.

4. AFTV

Blame rating: 8.5/10

You're not fooling anyone.

3. Stan & Josh Kroenke

Stan Kroenke
Colonel Sanders called, he wants his outfit back / Meg Oliphant/Getty Images

Blame rating: 9/10

While Josh has been more active with the recent running of the club, it feels like it's too little and too late.

Stan, on the other hand...do you think he even knows what's going on at Arsenal right now?

2. Ivan Gazidis

Ivan Gazidis
Gazidis made his fortune saving money on shampoo / Paolo Bruno/Getty Images

Blame rating: 9.5/10

Gazidis ripped up everything successful about Arsenal, forced the greatest manager in the history of the club out, and then just ran off to Milan.

And after the Super League debacle, they aren't particularly fond of him over in Italy, either. Well played, Ivan.

1. Arsène Wenger

Arsene Wenger
Why always him? / Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Blame rating: 10/10

Arsène Charles Ernest Wenger OBE made Arsenal what they are today.

The Premier League titles, the 'Invincibles', the consistent European appearances. He revolutionised the club from top to bottom and had the rest of English football playing catch up.

if he simply did not set such lofty standards for himself and his successors, then maybe fans would be happy competing for a top half finish.

The buck starts and stop with Le Professeur.

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