Barcelona won nothing for 6 years!

April 7, 2010

Between 1999 and 2005, they won zip, sod all, not a sausage, not a tin pot in sight.

They had a wonderful youth set-up, the fabled La Masia, producing some potentially great young kids.

Real Madrid, during those lean years for the club from Catalonia, were well under way with the Galacticos project.

Florentino Perez, the President of Real at the time, planned on spending whatever it took to prise away the best players on the planet, with one new Galactico landing in Madrid every summer.

The master plan was to buy titles at any cost.

Luis Figo, Zinedine Zidane, Ronaldo the Original, and David Beckam were duly signed between 2000 and 2003.

The policy worked to some extent, they won a couple of league titles and even scraped a Champions League.

Barcelona, in contrast, and in the background, were planning for the longer term.

I’m sure during those years without any trophies many of their fans lost faith in the project… ring any bells?

The Arsenal world has seen to full effect the culmination in the Barca youth project in recent weeks.

Youngsters such as Xavi Hernandez, Andreas Iniesta, and Lionel Messi were coming through the ranks and beginning to make first team appearances, but some of the Barca faithful did not believe in them.

They wanted the Directors of the club to spend big money like Real were.

I think you all know where I am going with this one.

Chill out, stop reading the trash goon blogs that brainwash you into believing we need 2 goalies, 4 centre backs, 3 wingers and a budgie.

Patience is an extreme virtue when supporting The Arsenal, we knew that building the stadium would limit our spending for a few years, this is something that many now pretend was somehow hidden from them.

Yes the long-term ideology was that extra revenue from bigger gates would help finance big money transfers, but it’s not even been 4 years since we moved into our new home.

We are getting there though.

Huge reductions in the debt, constant Champions League participation, challenges for the League title, semi-finals galore… ok no silverware, yet, but we have not fallen by the wayside.

Just stop and think about what the club has achieved in such a small space of time.

We are now a genuine Super Club, with Super Club resources.

Wenger will never be a manager to go and spend 100M on 3 players in one summer… but I think the time is now here for him to go whack 25 large on one player if he knows he is right for the team.

Following the crushing 2nd leg defeat in Spain to Barcelona, Wenger made the following comments..

“We are at a stage where we develop the players. Today in midfield we had Walcott who is 21, Bendtner up front who is 22, Nasri, Diaby and Denilson are 23, 22.” he said.

“I think they have shown some great qualities and will be stronger every year. We have to add something that is for sure but we have some time to think about that.”

He may surprise many this coming summer.

Keep the faith.


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51 Responses to “Barcelona won nothing for 6 years!”

  1. 7masters said

    True so far I liked what I saw last night. But we do need class players both defensive, forward, midfielders and Goalie, Alumina is simply a good back up that’s all. I never go for buying big but to make these kid world beaters they need experienced players in their ranks. Sol Campbell has been big help on these regard and you can see yourself.

  2. Can’t argue about needing a bit more experience in there.

    We certainly don’t need as many players as some think though.

    Last night, we could have had Gallas, Fabregras, Song, Arshavin and RVP in the side.

    That’s five world class players missing through injury.

  3. ed said

    Thank you…

    Sincerely thank you, that is just what ive needed to hear all day! you have made my week!

    In Arsene we Trust

  4. Mike Marten said

    Thanks for a really good blog. I intend to quote that info for quite some time – Barcelona won nothing for 6 years.

    I love the way our club is being run and look forward to good years ahead.

  5. Grover said

    interesting, nice to learn something new.

    gives up hope hawkey man.

  6. John Brandon said

    Wenger has two primary rules in buying players – 1/ Is the new player an improvement on what I already have 2/ Will he play the team game. All the doom and gloom predictions of last summer have failed to materialise – Wenger saw the need to fix the dressing room mess (offload) and he tried to bring in fresh blood that met his criteria but failed – he is very fussy about who he buys and rightly so. Unfortunately he has missed some obvious gems for reasons we are not privy to (price, wages, perceived ego’s….) and for me the biggest shame was not going after Shay Given – a superior keeper who would have added points to our tally without doubt.

  7. arsenal4ever said

    but Barca is spending know every year for top draw players!! Did Wenger it in the past?? Simple answer, no!! Now he realizes he has to do something but I think his time is up. We need new fresh blood so a new manager, too.

  8. dilshan said

    I agree totally, and in fact made this very point on fans forum last friday ..also Barca already had the massive stadium and had lods and lods of money …our starting postion was much worse than that of Barca..add to that the restriction on signing south american players till they turn 18…Barca were able to bring Messi and nature him just as they want and for some reason FIFA and UEFA have given them all the support they need…In the so called 5-6 year period we have achieved far more than what Barca did in the 5-6 it took them to rebuild …In Arsen I trust

  9. Richard said

    Now! This is a real article with backups!
    I love it!
    I think we have been improviong in the last 5 years and are so close!

  10. am said

    Love it. great article.

    maybe we might get a star name, but we got the basis for a great team.

  11. Az said

    Between 1999 and 2004 Barcelona were badly run. Finances were all over the place. Spending large amount on money on players they didn’t trust (such as Riquelme). Numerous managers coming and going. Each wanted their own players, none of which made the grade. Only in the Laporta era has the club become stable. Signed great players, trusted the youth set up (which has always been there, nothings changed). Rijkaard’s continuity for numerous seasons (one of the longest serving managers) and now Guardiola (who of course knows Barcelona inside out). Wenger gave Arsenal Success with a great mix of experience and youth and now solely relies on youth which will never happen. 5 years is too long for a club like Arsenal to come close to a title. Unlike Barcelona, Arsenal have kept faith with the same manager through the 5 years! Wenger has always had the money, he just chose not to spend it, or when he did, he hasn’t made the best of signings (e.g. Reyes who in my opinion was played out of position)

  12. ArtfulGooner said

    Brilliant blog, it us true great teams take time. People forget we’ve moved to a completely new stadium And this year has been the best though 0708 wasn’t too bad

  13. Johnny said

    fantastic post, there are so many similarities in the set ups of both clubs. Unfortunately we are 3/4 years behind them at this time. They are in a position where they can pay 30 million for a right back and 50/60 million for a striker who only slightly improves their team. We can`t do that whilst we are still paying off the debt of the new ground, so you are right, we are going to need to be very patient for another year or two. We may never reach the same level that Barcelona have but it will be fun watching them try. As for new signings this summer, I think big Sol has shown what we need, a good organiser at the back. It won`t be easy to find a 25 year old Sol Campbell though.

  14. xtreme said

    arsenal will buy higuain,hazard,chamakh,gourcuff,joe cole,melo,cahill,boateng,van der weil n neuer=10 siginnings
    outs-fabianski,silvestre,senderos,denilson,
    roiscky n eduardo=6 out
    in all 4 signinnings which will strengthen arsenal!
    these players can turn it around n atleast buy hazard,gourcuff n higuain!!then rely on da youth setup as if we dont win we can loose players like fabregas,rvp,etc eventually even the youth players may do the same thing so 2 aviod these happenings we ned couple of trophies 2 do dat n as wenger also said dat the amount of trophies arsenal win will keep him at the emirates!!
    so winning shud be the 1st priority den the youth setup!!so buy sum of these players if not evr1!!!
    a gooner4lyf

  15. dickson oge said

    yes you r right.all we have to keep faith.am really believe in than.it’s a matter of time.gunner till i die.

  16. dickson oge said

    yes you r rigth,all we have to do,is to start believin and keep faith.i really blieve in them.gunner till i die

  17. drarsenal said

    we r not improving,we r on the same level since this project started witch is a good level.we r in the C\L final stages,WE GO 3RD 4TH every year.for manur and chel$ki the didnt change thire hole team for the last 10 years like we did and that was a mistake from wenger .the players dat wenger talking about,walcot for example worth nothing eobue is better than him in making dicisions,every body saw his pass to b52 dat he scoure from our only goal.i like b52 becouse he keep fighting till the westle blow.he ls the last man standing.we solde flamini we’ve got song ,we solde help to get arshavin(who is nothing like help)
    the bottom line is that team needs good pack ups for our line ups.for sure a new goulkeeper and a cover for TV5 and his future partner.wat i want to say is dat we can win somthing with dis team + some firepowers this seasone or da next one.
    keep ur heads up we R the gunners.

  18. drarsenal said

    i mean hlep

  19. bigsnoop said

    Agree with AZ 100% there is no comparsison because during that 6 year spell they would sack anybody who didn’t finish 1st. Basically finishing second or getting close was (and still is) unacceptable for Barca.

  20. yes forever gunners…….till i die……….

  21. swarve said

    1st of all every season wen we lose drastically wenger cums out gettin all our dicks hard wiv talk of new signing-remember d ‘Two world class players’ talk??- so I’m nt gettin sucked in again! However I agree wid dis article 100%. Under our circumstances we av dun wonders!!!wiv all our injuries we still der n der abouts!wat pisses me off is we always weaken ourselves in d summer-shudda replaced shittybayour cos we all knew van perse wud get injured4half a season-we need2sign gallas up AND den buy a centreback who wil fight2break thru. We nt far off lads squad jus needs tweakin,n yestadays match may av taught us a lot bout hw an attackin team can defend! Cnt wait4 pre-season hope wengers irons a few tings out! RED ARMY!!

  22. pre-season?

    we got a title to win pal

    starting with the yids at shite hart lane a week today.

    😉

  23. arsenal4ever said

    Gazidis needs to show eggs and either sack Wenger or make him such preasure to buy real world class players to compete at the highest level. I am sick of this talk again and again!! He had a lot of time to build but nothing really happened. Yes we are hammered with big injuries but everyone has injuries to key-players!!! He needed to replace RVP but never happened!!!

  24. gunner17 said

    Our central midfielders have been the strength of our season. Fabregas and Song have been amazing, but Diaby, Denilson, Nasri and Ramsey have all stepped up at important times. When other areas of our team have been weakened by injury, our central midfielders have done the job. We now need to make sure that other areas of our team have as much strength in depth. We definitely need more physical power in attack and central defence. Chamakh is a start. Rodallega would do nicely. But replacing Sol, Gallas, SIlvestre and Senderos is a must. Djorou and Vermaelen will not be enough.

  25. Armourist said

    Today after that last nights beating, its good to get some perspective. Good article.

  26. gunner17 said

    RVP’s body clearly is not up to the rigours of a full season. He should be wrapped in cotton for most of the season and brought out for the prestige games at the end of the year. Buy Rodallega and Chamakh and let them and Bendtner do the heavy lifting for the first half of the season.

  27. gunner17 said

    Wenger needs to decide what he’s doing with Vela. The boy’s rotting on the sidelines. I would love to see him find his confidence and start tearing up our left side, like Walcott does on our right side.

  28. 7masters said

    Sorry for not thanking for your article , I still think we are 4 players short or even 5 cause Rvp, Gallas and some first team never finish a season without injury. Midfielders still a holding playing Song has improved but he playing to many games already. Denilson has improved and is good squad member, it would take Ramsey two seasons to reach the class. Wenger should spend to reinforce his squad,.Silvester, Senderos and other dead weight have to go or it simply waste of noneyvcand time.when wenger looked at list of injured before last night game he must have regretted nit buying it was simply very thin squad.

  29. Vavavoom14 said

    Where Barca charging the ticket prices that Arsenal are charging us? No!!
    I paid £1395 each for me and my sons season ticket last season. And Wenger said….Judge me in may. Well dont worry, I will!!

  30. don’t go, simple.

    if you don’t think you are getting your money’s worth.

    but dont fucking complain about spending money when nobody put a gun to your head and made you.

    have you not been entertained? and got CL footy EVERY season?

  31. The truth will set you free said

    No… sorry, just no. I know Arsenal fans want hope, but this parallel just isn’t accurate at all.

    You’re quite clearly guessing at what was going on at Barcelona during their dry spell, because you have no clue. No one was ‘building’ anything. They were very active in the transfer market, their deals just weren’t coming off. Different managers, different presidents… not the same.

    La Masia has been around for years, and the hallmark philosophy has been there since Johann Cruyff. Safe to say it outdates Arsene Wenger.

    The dry run was not a ‘building period’… and no one ever lacked faith in this batch of Barcelona youngsters, ever. Xavi has been a regular for 10 years and not doubted even once, because he’s world class. Same for Puyol (if anything, he’s worse now.) That’s two of their key players who have been regulars since their early 20s, for an ENTIRE DECADE, and never doubted. Arsenal players are doubted because they are not as good. Not now, not then, not…well…ever. No one doubted Iniesta, Messi, Bojan, Pedro, Busquets (the latter two who weren’t rushed into the first XI too young)… Gio dos Santos was doubted and that’s why he was cast out to where he belongs. You’ve got it completely wrong. Pique and Fabregas were both taken against FCB’s will — one is back, the other will be and it’s only a matter of time.

    All the new La Masia kids (i.e. all listed above bar Xavi and Puyol) came through under Frank Rijkaard. And if you recall… he had half a season of shitness, and his job was on the line. EDGAR DAVIDS was signed in January, and saved his season. Rijkaard didn’t win the title, but certainly put up one hell of a fight and kept himself in the job. The VERY NEXT season they stormed to La Liga, then the CL/Liga double after that. As soon as he lost his way, they were on his back. They gave him some time as goodwill, but when it quite clearly wasn’t happening, they booted him as well. Two seasons without silverware.

    The philosophies in management and coaching are different… and the calibre of youngsters we’re talking about is SO clearly different. What you have are two clubs who are renowned for playing the best football in their respective countries and you’ve messily attempted to tie them together. What you need to understand is that most teams in Spain play exactly like Arsenal, which is why most of them lose 4-1 at Camp Nou. They get called shit, cannon-fodder for Madrid and Barcelona. They’re not. They’re actually outstanding on a technical level — just when they don’t have the tactical and physical abilities, as well as coaching, they fall flat and can get steamrolled.

    Under Barcelona’s philosophy, Wenger would’ve been out of a job on 2007, 2008 at the latest. Rightly or wrongly, that’s what would have happened. Also, the youth team wouldn’t be full of foreigners… maybe 25 per cent, at most. The rest would be natives (but then again the Barcelona philosophy perhaps just wouldn’t exist in England, because England’s climate and culture is just so hindering to the coaching of a more technical game…so all the English youngsters just aren’t capable of playing highly technical football.)

    Also worth adding the whole money-spending issue. Obviously Arsenal are in something of a tight spot, but the money has always been there and has just not been spent. Not bucket-loads, but enough. And Barcelona, historically, have always spent just as heavily if not more than Real Madrid. Santiago Bernabeu and Florentino Perez are basically the two presidents who have proven exceptions to that rule. Two presidents over a goddamn century, with a quarter-century gap between reigns. Please get your mind right.

    Does any of this change the fact Arsenal are still on the cusp of greatness? No. They could still win the quadruple next season. But don’t equate it to any Barcelona-like philosophy. They are not following the same guideline, timeline, philosophy or anything.

    You need to brush up on your knowledge of La Liga really… I know this is only a blog and it’s not your job (while it is mine), but false knowledge is an ugly thing. This is reckless and inaccurate and will only perpetuate these kinds of myths that people will then circulate and circulate despite having no basis in reality. Just like people who describe Barcelona as a team who play ‘the Arsenal way’. Honestly one of the stupidest things I’ve ever heard.

    Not a Barcelona fan, by the way.

  32. Ahh, so Barca did win something in that 6 year period?

    No they did not, I admire the time taken to post ^ such negative vitriol.. but I fear you have totally missed the point.

    We all know La Masia has been around for years, nowhere has it been mentioned that it was a new set up.. oh and yes, i think i have heard of the croff fella… did he play for Belgium?

    If you are actually paid to do that… maybe you are lucky you have not been caught out yet, or maybe you need a change of vocation before the inevitable catch up.

  33. 7masters said

    A bit harsh their you could say wenger mismanagment is equal to Barca 6 years of problems. Barca have reached their prime it a pity the game against Arsenal was not the final as I doubt Inter would even give them a sniff like we did. Yes we played like la liga team why only wenger can answer that, what wrong with hitting the ball over a packed midfield?

    Wenger would never coach Arsenal to Barca level it impossible , the best he can do is to play Arsenal way with pace backed by strong defence a d midfield. Who cares what bacra do ? They spend just like real and it shows on football pitch no doubt but they are nothing special it just they prepared for Arsenal while we did not full stop.

  34. The great Arsenal team from the early noughties was up there with the barca team from last night.

    We had henry, pires, vieira, red fred, et al

    The players we have now are nowhere near there peak.

    They can only get better.

    Wenger has not become a poor manager overnight… patience, patience and patience.

  35. We could be champions of england within a month…

  36. Samuel said

    Some of the comments here need to be addressed:

    Wenger was seen as a big spending manager before the stadium. He outbid Real for Pires (both in price and wages) and spent 11m on a failing winger from Juve! A ridiculous amount spent on Reyes, Wiltord and Jeffers also spring to mind. It is a myth that he won’t spend money. It is missing an essential part of the sentence – he won’t spend money ‘his club doesn’t have’.

    Glazidis won’t pressure Wenger into spending ridiculous amounts we don’t have. They have a responsibility not only to the club and the fans but the tax man, to not overspend.

    Such an idea wouldn’t guarantee success anyway.

    We are fine as we are. But ‘fine’ isn’t enough. Luckily we reduced the debt by 90+ million this year and are starting to see big signings (arshavin, nasri, vermaelan all 10m+ signings in 2 years). As someone said, it is the player not the price that really matters though. If we end up buying someone from the greek third division, it is because the people who found ljungberg, song, vieira and cesc think he is good enough. As good as we all may be on football manager, maybe we should just learn to trust the most successful manager in Arsenal history and be patient.

  37. Jullsan said

    Don’t compare Arsenals situation as off now to Barcas 1999-2005. And btw they went 5 years without titles not 6.

  38. erm, if you get your calculator out, and do some really difficult long equations, you will find 2005 – 1999 = 6

  39. 7masters said

    Let hope Inter knock them out and they to lose to. French team Lyon in final then it would be fair, English,Italians,Spanish,Germans domination of Champion league is unfair.

    Let smaller team win at least but Arsenal have not won it yet, it stil a cup at the end of day. No big deal unlike the league which is far better.

  40. lordgunner said

    if you look at Wenger history before arsenal,he sign quiet few big player at Monaco,some of the best in Europe like Scifo,Klisnman,Hoddle,and few other but during his time there he set up one of the best academy in France.
    Today Monaco are skin and don’t have the power anymore to bring big player.Last time against Bordeaux they ve line up 6 player from the academy and they are on the up again after few years battling staying up.
    Wenger will maybe not send us for glory (still i hope so) but he will make life so much more easy for next manager of Arsenal Football club thanks to a world class training ground,a world class stadium,a fantastic young set up and a healthy club.

    Now were we can find supporter who sing for 90 mn instead of seatting and moaning about our player,manager .never understood people going to match and moaning all time.I though going to football match is to have a fun day out with friend and making new one because you love the same think.If watching arsenal make you miserable,may as well stop living

  41. here, here, Lordgunner 😉

  42. Jullsan said

    Stringfellow Hawke, Barca won the league 98/99 and again 04/05 thus ending the drought. They won nothing from 2000-2004, that’s five years. Learn to count!

  43. you idiot

    they won the league in 1999

    and then in 2005

    how many years in between you fucking clown?

  44. […] Barcelona won nothing for 6 years! Between 1999 and 2005, they won zip, sod all, not a sausage, not a tin pot in sight. They had a wonderful youth […] […]

  45. Social comments and analytics for this post…

    This post was mentioned on Twitter by GoonerCarlito: Some excellent points made here – https://legendaire.wordpress.com/2010/04/07/barcelona-won-nothing-for-6-years/?…

  46. Thanks for the feedback and happy blogging.

  47. I'mAwakeAndSmelling TheCoffee said

    Rubbish ! Barcelona had the guts to ask the hard questions , they sacked Van Gaal (twice) and Frank Rijkard as well, they spent heavily on proven talent , RING ANY BELLS !!

    Arsenal stumble on from year to year with rose tinted glasses, tomorrow will be better.

    Barcelona,Man U and chelsea all BRUSHED us aside, unthinkable 5 years ago but we’ve got used to 5 years of mediocrity and we make excuses for Wenger’s failed experiment.

    He is our greatest manager but thats no reason to fool ourselves.

  48. Nobody said it was going to be plain sailing once we moved into the emirates.. did they?

    It was a long-term objective that was in mind.

  49. sammy said

    nice article.we can match barca from every angle.for camp nou, we’ve emirates.for guardiolla,we’ve wenger.for pique,we’ve vermaelen.gallas for puyol,song for sergio,fab for xavi,diaby for iniesta,arshavin for henry,rvp for zlatan etc.only a messi,valdes,alves and an abidal missing in our team.four worldclass players to match barca and they include:sorenson,chamack,hazard and hangeland.go gooners go!

  50. sammy said

    nice article.we can match Barcelona from every angle.for camp nou, we’ve emirates.for guardiola,we’ve wenger.for pique,we’ve vermaelen.gallas for puyol,song for sergio,fab for xavi,diaby for iniesta,arshavin for henry,rvp for zlatan etc.only a messi,valdes,alves and an abidal missing in our team.four worldclass players to match barca and they include:sorenson,chamack,hazard and hangeland.go gooners go!

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