Why Arsenal supporters have no sympathy for Barcelona’s recent struggles – Tom Canton


Barcelona are suffering one of the worst periods in their history sitting in 9th place in the table after 7 matches having dropped points in 4 games already this season.

The loss of Lionel Messi coupled with the inability to strengthen significantly due to financial restrictions has led to a focus on free transfers and cheap deals where possible to reinforce the squad last summer.

Ronald Koeman saw his side battered by Bayern Munich at the Camp Nou in the opening round of the Champions League and remains under intense pressure to arrest the slump.

Amongst the footballing community, there has been discussion regarding the sadness associated with seeing such a giant of the game fall so far from the heights they were achieving.

Arsenal fans, however, have a good reason not to share in these sentiments and in turn, hold no sympathy for the fall from grace the Blaugrana are experiencing at present.

Barcelona’s ludicrous spending on the likes of Philippe Coutinho, Antoine Griezmann and Ousmane Dembele to name a few would always be frowned upon by the Gunners whose self-sustaining model has seen them fall under their KSE ownership.

Therefore, seeing the club pay the price and lose the likes of Messi due to their overextension in the market is seen as comeuppance.

With such a historic academy in La Masia, the similarities Arsenal and Barcelona used to draw not only for their style of play but also their youth production has since been separated.

Whilst Arsenal continues to bring through talents such as Emile Smith-Rowe and Bukayo Saka, Barca’s spending blocked the path and only recently has the route reopened for the likes of Ansu Fati and Riqui Puig.

The controversies between the clubs in the past also contribute to a lack of feeling from the Arsenal side. The famous Robin van Persie red card at the Camp Nou in the Champions League after having allegedly kicked the ball away despite not hearing the referees whistle being one of them. Stealing away an excellent opportunity to finally knock out the tournament favourites for the first time.



Cesc Fabregas' move to Barcelona left Arsenal fans feeling extremely disappointed and bitter.
Cesc Fabregas’ move to Barcelona left Arsenal fans feeling extremely disappointed and bitter.

Cesc Fabregas’ rumoured move to Catalunya was a regular highlight throughout his latter career in north London. After the Spanish World Cup victory, Carlos Puyol and Gerard Pique cheekily adorned Fabregas with a Barcelona shirt.

This did not go down well with the Arsenal faithful as expected and the dislike of the Blaugrana festered.

Honestly, however, one final reason likely lies in the similarity the two clubs do share. Arsenal themselves have fallen out of Europe and are out of contention for league titles. There is no time for sympathy when all the energy is directed towards the club in frustration at how this demise has come to pass.

Arsenal will want to return to the top as soon as possible. Yet even if they do, the likelihood of any consideration for Barca’s wellbeing is likely to remain at an all-time low.

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