By Tony Ngare
Someone needs to bring me the head of Arsene Wenger on a silver platter. The Arsenal manager has successfully failed yet again to land a trophy for the seventh season running after the Gunners failed to cope with Sunderland at the Stadium of Light for a ticket into FA Cup quarter finals.
For seven years now, Wenger has sold us the youth product but trophies have remained a mirage. When people joke that when Arsenal last won a trophy Blackberry was still a fruit, and you analytically appraise this phrase and itâs true, youâve got to be worried.
As if that is not enough, Wenger has now âdiscoveredâ a new trophy â fourth and final Champions League slot in the English Premier League. Barring a miracle in the second leg at the Emirates against Milan, Arsenal is heading towards a seventh successive season without a trophy.
However, Wenger believes that simply attaining Champions League qualification should be viewed as a huge achievement.
"The first trophy is to finish in the top four," he told reporters after the defeat to Sunderland. "And thatâs still possible. I believe finishing fourth is vital for us, so letâs focus on that".
As a certain blogger put it, over and above whatever else you have to admit that Arsene has added to the Arsenal lexicon in a way that will never be forgotten. âFourth is a trophyâ is right up there with âLike a new signingâ when an injured player returns, but I do wish somebody at the club would tell him how badly this particular aphorism comes across. While I think everyone gets the jist of what heâs saying, fourth place is not, never has been and never will be, a trophy.
It is, at best, an achievement. In fact, this season, more than any other, itâll be an achievement and a half if we manage it, but when the club has just crashed out of two cup competitions in a week, competitions that provide a real and actual trophy at the end of them, to spout this again was as ill-timed
This man has systematically âdehumanisedâ Arsenal fans to the extent that becoming number four in the league with a difference of upto 20 â 25 points between the winners and fourth slot holders is worth celebrating and offering sacrifices to the gods of the leather ball.
There is a reason why when I became number four in Class Four first term, I missed out on the exercises books, rubbers and pencils and cried all day. Since then I swore that I would always feature in the medal bracket â and I did.
Speaking of medal brackets, why donât we have a brass or aluminium medal for the fourth athlete now that Wenger deems it worthy of recognition?