Arsenal are battling a long absence from the Premier League elite, Liam Brady has said. He recently revealed that this is very sad and he fears they could be treading water for years.
According to him, former chief executive, Ivan Gazidis and ex-head of football, Raul Sanllehi are to blame for wasting hundreds of millions on a squad of misfits.
He added that there is no one player in the Arsenal team who is worth more than the club paid for him, except Gabriel Martinelli.
His words, “There was a constant battle for control on spending on transfers and contracts with Wenger,”
“In the end, the manager left and Gazidis got control. The people he put in place since have been total failures.
“If you look at Gazidis’s track record on buying players and that of Raul Sanllehi – who has recently left the club – the money that’s been spent in the last five or six years, you’re talking £300 to 350 million.
“Just look at the players we have signed under Sanllehi alone. Pepe for £72m. Lille have never sold a player for £72m. Gazidis had this idea he wanted to take the power of signing players away from the manager.
“After Arsene, Unai Emery came in. He was very poor, he couldn’t even speak English, running up and down the sidelines waving his arms around. No-one knew what he wanted to do or what he was doing.
“Look at the team we’ve got now. There’s not one player we have bought apart from Gabriel Martinelli – a relatively cheap signing – who is worth any more than we paid for them.
“Look at all the rest, none of them are worth what we paid for them. You’d be lucky to get half of the cash back now in an open market.
“We didn’t challenge the Champions League positions and we got into Europe because we won the FA Cup. Arsenal fans aren’t stupid. They are looking at the team thinking: ‘This isn’t going to challenge the top four’.
“Unless things change with the owners and board we will be treading water for the next few years. I feel sorry for Mikel Arteta, having to unravel all this.
“It’s going to take time. I can’t see them getting back to the top unless you’ve got a brilliant manager. Arteta might be that – there’s been pluses and minuses so far – but he’s got to be given time to make sense of this.”
“Sanllehi did buy the players. Arteta has much more say now,”
“It needs a major change. It’s going to take at least a couple of years to do it. I just hope Arteta can show he has the ability to turn it around.”
“I think the kids are up to it. With the likes of Bukayo Saka and Martinelli, they have the ability and character to pull us clear. My worries lie with the seniors.
“Six or eight need to go. Granit Xhaka, Dani Ceballos, Sokratis, Shkodran Mustafi, Pepe, Willian, David Luiz – I could probably name another three if I had the squad to hand.
“We have to stick with the coach – even though he’s not experienced anything like this before – and see what happens.”