I have a guilty secret: I think Arsenal's boss is great

And so wearily, reluctantly, to Arsenal, for my first of the season, knowing they would be bound to win - they always do since I started going to see them whenever Spurs are away - telling myself that it's football I like, a live game on a Saturday afternoon that I want to see, even if it is Arsenal. And once again, wearily, reluctantly, I dreaded the prospect of having to come away admiring the quality, feeling the width and breadth of Arsene Wenger's achievements.

As I sat down with my Arsenal chums, most of whom know my guilty secret, they were all saying: not long now, eh, how long do you reckon, eh, before Graham goes?

George Graham has been complaining about the Spurs crowd booing him because he is ex-Arsenal, poor deluded fool. There might not be knighthoods on offer, freedoms of White Hart Lane, into the hall of legends with Bill Nick, but there would certainly not be boos if Spurs were doing well, if they appeared to be a half-decent, half well-organised side, if they looked like they might reach a place in the top six - a prospect that dear Graham dangled in front of us when he arrived.

It is also foolish of him to go on about Spurs having done nothing for years. All true: no league title for 40 seasons. He doesn't need to tell us. We know it all too well. But he misses the point. During those 40 years, we have usually had one or two players to cheer us up, such as Hoddle or Waddle, Gazza or Ginola, and often a whole team, as under Ozzie Ardiles, which might have got stuffed, but at least they got stuffed in style. The Spurs crowd is willing to forgive a lot, as long as there is someone in the side who is entertaining.

The point about Ginola, which Graham has failed to grasp, is that he might not have pulled his weight, might have fannied around, but he did cheer us up, did give us hope, just by his presence. In a really good, top-class team, he would not have kept his place, but in a dreary, uninspired, journeyman team, which Spurs is at the moment, he reminded us of former glories. He alone promised the unexpected.

Graham's other self-justifying rationale, his other defence mechanism, has been to moan about the lack of money. This is also foolish. Anyone who has been able to spend £11m on one player, and a total of £33.2m since arriving two years ago, has not exactly been starved of resources.

The £11m went on Serhiy Rebrov, who seems good enough, skilled enough, but doesn't make the heart leap and, so far, doesn't quite fit into the team. I suspect that he's beginning to think: what have I done, who wants to fit into this crap team anyway, I wonder if I can go with Sol to Man Utd or back to Ukraine and count my zlotys? I like the word zlotys. Although, didn't Ukraine keep roubles when the Soviet Union packed up? Don't tell me. I've got a headache already, having just been to watch Arsenal - which I enjoyed early on when the crowd around me were getting at Bergkamp, moaning about him wanting more money yet doing so little. But when Man City collapsed, totally, he was one of those who scored. Immediately, it was "Only one Dennis Bergkamp".

What Arsenal have is Arsene Wenger. And what he has, which is the ultimate mark of any good manager, regardless of the league they are in, regardless of their financial resources, is the ability to create Added Value.

Added Value is always hard to gauge. In education and in hospitals, they are trying it, thinking up mad tables, mad tests. But you are rarely comparing like with like, and are never able to create a truly scientific or even fair way of measuring supposed improvements.

In football, it can be fairly subjective, a matter of opinion - ie, Graham didn't rate Ginola, while almost every Spurs fan did - but, in football, we also have true league-tables which, at the end of the season, do show a team's true worth.

Arsenal's league positions over the past four years have made it clear that they are miles better than Spurs. Most football fans would also agree that Wenger has a gift for adding value to individual players.

He has bought relatively unknown players relatively cheaply, and turned them into players desired by most other clubs: players such as Vieira, Petit, Kanu, Silvinho and Anelka. OK, so Anelka was trouble in the end. But think of how he appeared when he first arrived, and how much he was sold for.

I carefully watched Thierry Henry's first games and thought: he's going to be a lightweight, peripheral figure, why has Wenger bought him? So much for my judgement. At present, I am still doubtful about Oleg Luzhny. I think he is lumpen, should really be playing for Graham, but my Arsenal chums say he is in the team because he's better at passing the ball than Lee Dixon.

I am trying hard, but I can't think of one player acquired by Graham to whom he has added any value. Tim Sherwood, Chris Perry, Steffen Freund, Ben Thatcher? No chance. Their currency rate is falling faster than the euro.

That's what I was thinking, as I came away from Highbury. Then I thought: if Graham goes, who can come in and do better at Added Value? I was thinking these thoughts awfully hard, walking down the stairs from the West Stand, trying to drown out the noise of the Arsenal fans. They had watched their team win 5-0 and were all singing "Boring, Boring, Arsenal".

Sometimes, going to football can be almost unbearable . . .