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Fan rant: Rafa's not cool, he's rude!

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Arsenal are a model club
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Fan rant allows CNN Football iReporters to have their say on issues affecting their clubs
  • MickeyGooner thinks Arsenal are the blueprint for a well-run club
  • Do you agree with his views on English Premier League rivals Liverpool?

(CNN) -- Arsenal iReporter MickeyGooner thinks his side are the blueprint for a well-run football club in Europe. Do you agree? Have your say at the bottom of the page.

Fan's view: "Over the past few seasons, it has been Liverpool and Arsenal trading third and fourth place in the English Premier League, and with a Champions League trophy in Rafa Benitez's cabinet, it's easy to think that Liverpool's recent silverware success shades Arsenal as the more successful of the two clubs.

You read it in football columns and on sports talk shows: "It's all about silverware, Arsenal are under pressure having not won anything for 5 years."

But the fact is, it's wrong, plain and simple. Rafa Benitez's early success has papered over his gross negligence in the transfer market, and has blinded fans and pundits to his lack of long-term vision for Liverpool.

What puts clubs under real pressure isn't the lack of silverware, so much as the lack of financial discipline, ballooning debts and poor transfer market decisions.

In the same timeframe as Liverpool won two trophies, Arsenal have ramped-up their academy, moved into one of the finest stadiums in Europe, maintained their financial independence and packaged their debt into a sustainable model.

Rafa's transfer market mistakes and financial recklessness have been to blame
--MickeyGooner
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While Rafa bought the likes of [Fernando] Morientes, [Ryan] Babel, [Andriy] Voronin and Lucas, manager Arsene Wenger developed the likes of Cesc Fabregas, Aaron Ramsey, Kieran Gibbs, and Jack Wilshire at a fraction of the cost.

While Liverpool's poor signings hurt them on the pitch, they also levied a destructive financial toll. These players were often sold or released at a financial loss.

Rafa's transfer market mistakes and financial recklessness have been to blame. When [Xabi] Alonso left for Real Madrid, Liverpool had to spend $30m on his replacement in Alberto Aquilani. This is because their academy hasn't produced a first-team quality player in years.

In contrast, when Adebayor was sold to Manchester City in the same transfer window, Arsene Wenger did so knowing he had replacements already in the wing in [Carlos] Vela, [Theo] Walcott and Niklas Bendtner.

Yes trophies are important, but what good are trophies if you cannot defend them? It is the Arsenal model that clubs need to follow: Sustainable growth, nurturing young talent, an academy that produces players and a manager with a long-term vision .For Liverpool, I fear it's too little, too late. "