Yes, you heard that right. There were some empty seats at the Emirates. And there are widespread protests and banners as well. It’s all happening at Arsenal football club these days. Arsenal are one of those clubs that are always boasted of having a huge fan base. They had fans who always made the opponents team realize their presence in the ground. Be it home or away, the Arsenal fan base would always be seen shouting and creating tremendous support for their team. But all that is on the change. The Arsenal fan base is showing their dissent towards the Arsenal team for a few seasons now.
It’s almost 12 years that Arsenal last won the EPL title. 12 long years is what one of the best clubs in England is waiting to lift the EPL title again. It was in 2003-04 season that Arsenal won the league. And what a season they had back then. They won the league without losing a single match that season. The name “The Invincibles” was quite apt for the champions. They were absolutely brilliant to watch those days. And what blood rush in excitement their fans used to have those days. It all seems to be gone now. The fans seem more dazed and faded out these days. Well, someone has to take the blame? They had to wait 8 long years to win any piece of silverware. After winning the FA cup last in 2005-06, they next won it in the 2013-2014 season. After 8 frustrating seasons, the fans finally got to celebrate something with the FA Cup.
Accordingly the fans have taken to show their disappointment. The huge banners, the empty seats at the stadium, the protests, and the “Wenger out” banners are all things that Arsenal fans have taken up to make the club realize that they want change at the club. The fans are tired of waiting for something magical to happen at the club. And it’s about time Arsenal get things changed at the club. I personally feel that all these actions from the supporters is actually good for the club. It has made the club realize what they are lacking. Their fans have made the club realize that even though they have huge respect for Wenger, he is no longer the right man for the club. The fans have started to lose faith in Wenger’s philosophy and is trying to show it to the club as well. They are making the club management realize that Wenger’s methods are outdated now and it needs to be changed.
Selling all their star players, not buying star players, spending money on the a new ground whereas the money could have been used to bring new talents to the club etc. are some of the things that the fans are still worried about. However, in the past couple of seasons, they have bought the likes of Ozil and Sanchez and the fans were delighted at that. But still they felt it was a little too late and wasn’t enough as well. Not winning the EPL makes their case all the more strong. However, the club still overlooks all these factors and still believes in Wenger. When things like these happen, it’s the duty of the supporters to make the club and the manager realize that they are wrong. The protests and all other actions are the things that makes the club realize that there has to be a change for good. One recent example would be Dortmund of last season. When they were having a very bad run of form and were at the extreme bottom of the league, the fans did a huge amount of protest to make the club realize that something needs to change. Klopp and the management realized that and they started more rotations in the club. They also changed the playing style a bit and made sure that the opponents doesn’t find Dortmund all too predictable. And it all worked. Dortmund rose from the bottom and eventually qualified for the Europa League. Klopp too realized he was no longer then man for the job and he left. Along came a new manager and along came good performances this season. That’s exactly what needs to happen at Arsenal. They need fresh air at the Emirates and that’s what the fans are trying to make the club realize.
Many would argue that fans protesting like these is not the correct way. But when the management of a club is just not willing to realize what’s wrong with their club, it is the fans that have to make them realize. So the actions of the fans are completely justified and it might be them that will lead to change at the club and therefore bring in success. It is going to be a blessing in disguise for Arsenal.