Standing shooting the breeze at half-time on Thursday night, in a humiliatingly half-empty stadium, the like of which we’d not seen since the inauguration of the Gunners new home in 2006, it couldn’t have possibly been more glaringly obvious that Unai Emery’s number was up.
It’s easy to believe the FA Cup has lost a bit of its shine after Arsene Wenger lifted the famous trophy three times in four years but still lost his job because it was the ‘only’ thing he won; but that doesn’t mean there aren’t clubs going into this year’s third round desperate to reach Wembley.
The rise and fall of Arsène Wenger: An insider’s account of how the historic success of Arsenal’s greatest manager ultimately contained the seeds of his own downfall.
Sic Transit Gloria Mundi. So it would appear that swathes of empty seats and the prospect of the financial pain of a desolate prawn circle, after the installation of more Club Level seats this summer, has finally forced a response to the interminable outcry for change at the Arsenal, signalling the end of a glorious era.
The view from the Bridge, the Stamford Bridge press box, is the worst in the Premier League, especially if you are unlucky enough to be stuck at the back, where the low overhanging concrete beams give the impression of a Second World War bunker. It makes anything above head height on the pitch almost impossible to see.
There are occasions in football, special moments, when history changes before your very eyes; and Arsenal and Liverpool fans may well find themselves drifting back 26 years when the Premier League’s first and third-placed teams meet today, dreaming of recreating just such a turning point.