Arsenal fans cannot expect trophies says Fulham boss Martin Jol


Martin Jol today told Arsenal fans it was no longer realistic for them to expect a regular diet of trophies as he looked to add to their “frustration” ahead of Fulham's trip to the Emirates Stadium.

Cottagers boss Jol, who spent three years in charge of the Gunners' arch-rivals Tottenham, suggested Arsene Wenger's men were not competing on a level playing field with Manchester United, Manchester City and Chelsea.

The Dutchman admitted seven years without silverware was "a long time" for a club of Arsenal's stature but insisted their supporters would miss Wenger when he finally left the manager's hotseat.

The longer the Gunners' trophy drought has continued, the more the pressure on Wenger and the board from the fans has intensified, and Jol said: "If you look at the likes of Man City with almost half a billion spent, Man United, it's not easy nowadays.

"Can you expect a team like Arsenal to win things, with Chelsea, Man City, Man United, all these clubs?"

Asked if supporter anger was justified, Jol said: "I don't think you have to be angry. Frustrated is probably the better word.

"Angry with Wenger? Wenger created the new Arsenal, almost.

"Maybe in three years' time, they will hope and pray to get someone like Wenger."

Jol famously clashed with the Frenchman while in charge at White Hart Lane and added: "I'm not an Arsenal fan - as you well know - but I always admired Wenger for what he did.

"There is not one other team in the top four doing the same thing with the same philosophy.

"They always manage to find the players who are younger and create value on the pitch.

"Of course, it's probably not what an Arsenal fan wants.

"Seven years? That's a long time?"

Wenger was criticised in some quarters for suggesting 15 successive seasons inside the Barclays Premier League top four was the equivalent of a trophy.

Jol said: "He's one of the few managers who will never be under pressure because people realise what he has done, not only in the past but last year."

Arsenal recovered last season from their worst start in 58 years to finish third.

They are only seventh this season after 10 matches, nine points off top spot and level with Jol's Fulham, who they host on Saturday.

"I would always put my money on Arsenal to be in the top four," Jol added, who admitted the loss of Robin van Persie was a big blow to them.

"Of course, they miss him, but we miss a few people and we get other people in."

Jol insisted it was "ridiculous" to suggest Fulham had any chance of finishing above the Gunners this season, although he did not rule out leapfrogging them this weekend.

The Cottagers have never won at Arsenal but went as close as ever last season, leading 1-0 at the Emirates with eight minutes remaining.

"If we have a good day with our team, I think we could cause them a problem," said Jol, whose side have taken five points off the Gunners in their last three meetings.

"We did that last year. They scored in the 85th minute or so.

"At home, we scored the winner with Bobby Zamora in the last couple of minutes, so hopefully we can do the same."

Jol was today sweating on the fitness of midfielder Mahamadou Diarra, who he rated "50-50" with a knee injury.

Kieran Richardson should return to Fulham's squad, with Simon Davies the only long-term absentee.


FootballGerman sparks three goals in four minutes at favourite No 10 role
Rumer was diagnosed with bipolarity, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder: 'I was convinced it was a misdiagnosis'
peopleHer debut album caused her post-traumatic stress - how will she cope as she releases her third record?
A long jumper competes in the 80-to-84-year-old age division at the 2007 World Masters Championships
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Radamel Falcao was forced to withdraw from the World Cup after undergoing surgery
premier leagueExclusive: Reds have agreement with Monaco
Arts and Entertainment
'New Tricks' star Dennis Waterman is departing from the show after he completes filming on two more episodes
tvHe is only remaining member of original cast
Lewis Hamilton will start the Singapore Grand Prix from pole, with Nico Rosberg second and Daniel Ricciardo third
F1... for floodlit Singapore Grand Prix
Life and Style
Walking tall: unlike some, Donatella Versace showed a strong and vibrant collection
fashionAlexander Fury on the staid Italian clothing industry
Arts and Entertainment
Gregory Porter learnt about his father’s voice at his funeral
Arts and Entertainment
tvHighs and lows of the cast's careers since 2004
Life and Style
Children at the Leytonstone branch of the Homeless Children's Aid and Adoption Society tuck into their harvest festival gifts, in October 1936
food + drinkThe harvest festival is back, but forget cans of tuna and packets of instant mash
New Articles
i100... she's just started school
New Articles
Life and Style
Couples have been having sex less in 2014, according to a new survey
Arts and Entertainment
musicBiographer Hunter Davies has collected nearly a hundred original manuscripts
New Articles
i100... despite rising prices
Holly's review of Peterborough's Pizza Express quickly went viral on social media
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam