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Style over substance: what matters more to fans, entertainment or winning? | Ed Aarons


Supporters of many different clubs talk about the ‘way’ their teams must play, yet it seems in the age of high finance such scruples are fading away and success by any means will suffice

The Arsenal way. The Manchester United way. The Tottenham way. The West Ham way. Every supporter wants their team to be successful but also play with a certain style that is supposedly unique to their club. Yet in the multimillion-pound industry that football in the 21st century has become, are we all expecting a little too much?

Petr Cech’s acknowledgement this week that the former manager Arsenal Arsène Wenger cared more about the aesthetic beauty of his teams than their effectiveness was the kind of candid admission professional footballers only make once a former regime has been consigned to history. However, it was still revealing to hear the true thoughts of a player who has won four Premier League titles, five FA Cups, the Champions League and Europa League since he arrived in England more than 14 years ago.

Related: Petr Cech: Arsène Wenger was more worried about playing style than winning

Related: Kevin Keegan: 'No, I'm not going to take a compliment from Mike Ashley'

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