Is Arsene Wenger a superstitious man?

Superstitious about supernatural things or Feng Shui of football are common thing which happens at football world. You believe to something that makes you comfortable before the match and hope it would helps you to win that game. I am not talking about witchcraft here, but the unorthodox habits that weird for some people and reasons but for some not. Arsenal players had some of footballer who believes on this kind of thing, and some of managers even do the same, they even make it so seriously.

Some of Arsenal players do prepared what is their food before the game, what gear they must take, what kind of training before the game and even before going to pitch, they do weird movements to boost their superstitious morale hoping to score some goals that night. But it was the common thing you heard from the player, even we do that whenever we play a little bit 5-a-side or even any game. But how about the manager? The man behind the scene of game, the mind games before game, the one who burns your spirit and who gives you rational or logical thing to win something, we’ll it’s kinda weird for someone who put the charge on everything based on logic to had that. But, Some of you, maybe even heard those manager who did that. They even famously pick the player based on their weird factor, and its debatable which it was selfishness or it was really based on form.

Arsene Wenger came to Arsenal in 1997 with impression of a teacher not even a manager. So basically you would tell that the guy must be rationally and logical thinking not based on speculation. After 20 years reigns at Arsenal, is he still the same guy? Was his experiences could be the factor that makes him change? Let’s discuss about how his behavior since he step the foot at England.

In his first 10 years, his choice of selection is famously connected with French player. He inherited the squad from Graham and Rioch, which focused on defensive area as Tony Adams as a leader and Dennis Bergkamp upfront. But he brings back player who has been worked with him before, Thierry Henry from Juventus, when Wenger still at AS Monaco. He bought another foreign player which fill the squad more than English player, such as Petit, Vieira, Pires and many more. Is it superstitious for him to buy foreign player than locals? It seems no, he said to media about it,

“My dream was always to produce 60 per cent English and 40 per cent foreign young players, We are still only focused on quality but for the first time England produces so much quality. It’s not that I have changed.” Arsene Wenger.

Seems like it’s not superstitious things to buy foreign players, it was his vision after all and it’s all math in Arsene’s mind,Lol.

He changed a diet of Arsenal players to ban a Mars bar in players diet. Makes them eat a plenty of healthy food since he came. If you ask if it’s weird then you’re wrong, it’s healthier but you can’t ban Mars bar, it’s tasty. And how about the tactics he played?  He always love to play with beautiful attacking attractive football and he must playing fine football. He said to media about it too,

“Is the ugly way the best way? The most efficient way is to play good football and not to kick the ball into the stand, because there is no goal there, the goal is on the pitch.” Arsene Wenger.

He said whenever to tackle you have committed with it and it’s belong to referee to judge, that’s why he prefer to stay away with ugly play. But he told also if he need to change then he will, he is no stubborn man. What does he mean is if you must play defensively then he will, what’s matter is the result. He will put winger when he need it, he put Giroud if he wants to, and play 4 playmaker if it’s possible. Not superstitious thing. Well. Another passed by, that this man doesn’t have any superstitious thing whenever he choose tactics. How about his dress code? Arsene loves to put his suit and tie from Arsenal sponsors when the weather is cool, but when is not, the coat is coming. The coat was very long, almost touch his feet and very thick. Whenever and whoever he plays in cold weather he always choose that coat and it’s not superstitious enough. It’s just cold and even he mocked his own funny jokes, the zipper on Puma adverts. Amazing isn’t it?

I almost run out of ideas about Arsene Wenger a superstitious man, how can I thought about that? When I, as a fans and analyze the game from the stand and the flat, I always do a superstitious thing. Whatever it comes for a goal, an injury, or even the player who will get a red card. Wenger is not that man, he complain when it’s not at the right place, he analyze the game from the records and statistics on and on. He is logical person, a sober, always being the coolest person ( if he pushed Mourinho last year, it just because Mou deserve it). It was contradiction with us fans, when he is the most logical person, we hope for something that so weird. I thought we just left the superstitious thing for fans and put Arsene Wenger alone. He doesn’t need it, he just wants to prove that success is process.

By the way, talking about Arsene Wenger shaking hands in official match, sometimes he didn’t shaking another manager. But it was there is no reason, it just a tense things happen and conditions. He said it was Wenger family tradition to shake hands it seems. I only find one weird thing that comes up in my mind..


Still.. He comes with some logical reason.

Anzala Ryanto as Author of this post, big Gooner and right now focused as freelance  sports journalist in Indonesia, USA and UK.


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