“My feelings were simple. Completely fed up with the situation at the club. I went to the game in full expectation of losing and they didn’t let me down.”
Those were the words of Arsenal supporter Kane Hopps who was publicly blasted as “an idiot” by former Man United right back, Gary Neville as Arsenal’s slim title hopes were all but ended by Chelsea as they slumped to a 3-1 defeat at Stamford Bridge.
But Hopps stands by his decision to raise the banner at the game as he feels that after years of disappointment with a lack of trophies won, that it is time for the manager to step down so a fresh face with new ideas can take the reigns at The Emirates.
“We spend fortunes and for what? Constant disappointment. We have been lied to, and Wenger himself mugs us fans off week in week out. I’ve had enough of it and want my feelings to been known, and in a respectful manner hence the lack of abuse, just a simple enough is enough time to go.”
Hopps, admitted he wasn’t offended by the comment from Neville but was surprised that the Sky Sports pundit couldn’t see his point from a fans perspective.
“I wasn’t personally offended by Gary but I was surprised at the lack of respect he had for me as a paying fan to respectfully voice my opinion. Especially as he has slated Wenger numerous times before.”
He’s also voiced his pleasure at his protest being the start for further protests against Wenger which have been a regular occurrence ever since Hopps was seen protesting with his banner.
“I’m glad my protest has moved to allow others to come out the woodwork and make themselves heard now. I hope it continues because it’s the only way we can get our voices heard and for the board and Wenger to take notice. We never wanted it to come to this, we don’t take pleasure in doing this, but it has to be done.”
Kane also confirmed that he was taking part in the well publicised protests outside The Emirates but is hopeful that the numbers joining in with the protests will grow as the season progresses.
“I have been joining in the protests with others since then yes. It’s not been massive numbers but it’s a start, few hundred. There needs to be more to make a true difference though but it’s certainly a good start.”
Hopps doesn’t just hold the manager responsible for the decline, but he is also highly critical of the club’s board who he says “haven’t got ambition”.
“The board are a huge problem at Arsenal for sure. There is no pressure on Wenger at all to perform, only to get top 4 which for a club like Arsenal just simply isn’t good enough.
The main problem is ambition. And they are not football people they are businessmen, who don’t seem to care about the fans despite numerous claims about loving Arsenal and moving them to the next level.”
But Hopps believes that Wenger has lost the dressing room as players aren’t giving 100% on the pitch for the team.
“I think Wenger has had way too much faith in certain players who have never been good enough to play for Arsenal. He goes on about how he could of signed so many players but didn’t due to who we currently had, well they’ve not shown to be worth that sacrifice.”
He claims that there are many options available to the club to bring in as the new manager with Massimiliano Allegri or Diego Simeone among his preference for the job.
“Allegri would be great, he’s doing a wonderful job at Juventus and would install a winning mentality into the side for sure. He’s tactically a genius too, and often wins games with his subs. Simeone would add the steel we are winning and also change the mentality of the side.”
Hopps stated that he just wants what is best for Arsenal Football Club, and would have preferred if Wenger announced his departure now, so that the fans could give him the send off he deserves at the end of the season after a fantastic legacy he has brought to the club.
“Surely you’d announce it now, take the pressure off, prevent the toxic atmosphere and try to get everyone together and send him off on the high that he ultimately would deserve!”
The Arsenal season ticket holder branded it a “shambles” as no decision has been made about his future at the club so late in the season.
“He should of announced weeks ago what he’s doing, he’s holding the board to ransom and they are allowing him to. It’s a shambles all round. How can we prepare for the summer and next season if he waits until may/June to make a decision? Madness. And if he doesn’t announce he’s off, he will get hounded out even more and won’t get any kind of send off the longer this continues.”
It remains to be seen as to what will happen with the managerial situation at Arsenal but the longer it goes on with no change, seemingly it is evident more fans will start to turn on the manager.