Stone Cold Friday: 8 Reasons Why Arsenal Can Win The Title

It’s Friday, it’s five to five, it’s…oh, no that was Crackerjack. You’ve got the short straw; here’s Darius

Arsene Wenger was laughed out of TV and radio studios and ridiculed in news columns when he suggested at the end of November that Arsenal were still in the title race and Chelsea would drop points. The contempt and disdain shown toward Wenger for even thinking that the presumed Juggernaut from the Kings Road would falter, was matched with the arrogance of Chelsea’s premature coronation as champions.

A month is a long time in football; humble pie is an effective leveller. Here’s my 8 reasons why I believe Arsenal can win the title this season:

1. The strength and depth of our Squad

There is a perception that Arsenal’s squad injury-riven cannot cope with the demands of challenging for any trophies. An objective look at their achievements despite the injury crisis totally discredits this misguided view. Even with the current 9 players frequenting our medical facility, the squad has coped admirably with an unforgiving league.

Often, excuses are rolled out to explain how injuries have affected the performances of other top sides, but very little mention that Arsenal has had its fair share of medium and long term injuries, but we’re still defiantly sitting at the high table. Traore, Our 3rd choice left back for example is challenging anyone to call him a 3rd choice anything and is absolutely holding his own, it’s hardly noticeable that we’re missing Clichy or Gibbs.

For most, it’s easier to complain about how injuries are affecting us and how we need to buy reinforcements, but few rarely stop to consider that it is indeed our strength and depth that is sustaining us well thus far.

2. We’re the most lethal striking force in Europe

69 goals in 29 games in all competitions from 18 different players. That’s an average of 2.38 goals a game and still maintaining that lethal edge without our preferred talisman. Enough said.

3. Solid foundation and Financial stability

Manchester United – £699m in debt and rising with an operating loss of £45m; Chelsea – £700m debt (half masked as equity and Abramovich flushing the rest down the drain as a loss), and still with operating losses of £69m; Liverpool – £300m and counting while the gloss fades away on the pitch; Manchester City – £90m operating losses even with their filthy rich owners making the £400m investment so far disappear from the liability column into the equity column on the balance sheet. Need I go on?

In the era of brazen ‘cheque book’ management where profligacy is a fashion statement and prudency is seen as a virus, Arsenal stands head and shoulders above all elite clubs. Our financial stability and management model is the envy of most clubs who are now scrambling to emulate us.

We have a solid platform to build and maintain success for the new decade and beyond. And as Colombo would characteristically say – ‘Oh, one more thing’, we actually make a tidy profit.

4. We’re a much better team than we were last year

This time last season, we had clocked 30 points from 19 games with a goal difference of +4. This season at the midpoint, we have 41 points after 19 games with a goal difference of +30. Do the math.

5. Our players are a year older and more experienced

In an era where experience is misguidedly measured by a transfer value, name or reputation, little regard is given to the growth and personal development of individual players. Much less attention is paid to the collective growth made by a team that has been playing together and learning through the difficult experiences of each campaign. One of Arsenal’s biggest strengths this far has been the fact that people haven’t seen this team coming.

The ’youth’ label so often associated with Arsenal has provided a false sense of security to many of our competitors and non-admirers in the establishment. The folly of thinking that youth equals inexperience is catching up with them.

6. We have arguably the most effective midfield unit

Whether it’s the dynamism or creativity of our midfield, or whether it’s the fact that 43% of our goals in the league have come from the midfield, you’d have a job on your hands arguing against the effectiveness of Arsenal’s midfield unit.

This isn’t just about the individual brilliance of Fabregas, or the industry of Denilson, or the solidity and reliability of Alex Song or the presence and power of Diaby. As a unit both in defence and offence, our midfield works together as a well oiled and efficient machine, and they will only get better.

Apart from the plethora of chances the Arsenal midfield weave out, their mastery of transition play from defence to offence is improving with every game, and is the key to our regular dose of Wengerball.

Did I mention that our midfield scores a shed load of goals too?

7. Weakening of Other contenders

One of the chaps from the ’It’s all up for grabs now’ podcast described Wenger as probably the best used car salesman in the land. Wenger has this knack of making sure his player’s legs give way on another manager’s pitch, and very few understood the method in his madness when he let Toure and Adebayor go.

This supposedly weakened Arsenal, despite the acquisition of Arshavin and Vermaelen in 2009. It is plain to see now that Arsenal is a much stronger proposition with the change in personnel.

As for our other 2 title challengers – Manchester United are being found out time and time again as the reality dawns on how they’ve lived on the adrenaline of their previous success and the lesser Ronaldo isn’t around to get them out of jail. The quality of their squad is not as good as it has been in the last 3 years.

As for our neighbours out west, It’s only a matter of time before the legs of the footballing ‘senior citizens’ go at Stamford Bridge. Let’s face it, they aren’t getting any younger, and if you lift the lid off their first team, there is a valid question about the quality beneath. Even the Ivory Coast manager has lambasted Chelsea for treating Drogba like a machine and running him into the ground. What choice do they have?

8. The Home Straight

In a 4 week period at the end of January, we play our nearest adversaries in consecutive games. The momentum we are building towards those games will stand us in good stead. The important thing though, is that once we’ve negotiated those matches, the home straight through the business end of the season favours Arsenal.

With the positive mindset and mental strength, the last 12 games are an opportunity for consistency and points collection. With a bit of luck, we might even do the job at the Lane or when Abu Dhabi City comes into town.

All that remains is the belief within the team and amongst supporters, and the mental strength and determination to carry all of us through to the finishing line.

The players are up for a fight – Are you?

‘til Tomorrow when we may have a football match to look forward to.

Posted on January 8, 2010, in Arsenal, Football, Premier League, Premiership, Soccer and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 258 Comments.

  1. I certainly am up for the fight. I have believed since the beginning of the season that we have the ability to win this league.

    Many of our players are yet to hit their stride so far this season and if half of them do (Walcott, Bendtner, Clichy, Rosicky, Eduardo and so on) then the other teams will not be able to stop us.

    All the ingredients are there and even the doomers have piped down somewhat in recent weeks.

  2. We have 38 from 18. I think someone’s assuming a bit too much with that game in hand just yet ;).

    Besides that, good read.

  3. well written article…..top post mate hope we celebrate at da lane or when ade comes to town

  4. nice one mate..i for one have never doubt our gunners’ endurance & quality to withstand the toughest league in the world..in fact i’m happy to stand by your point against those who feel otherwise..

    i’ve been admiring our style of play since 1997..have been noticing the growth of our young gunners..despite one or two exits..but overall, those who left in the squad are capable of winning the league..just a matter of time..& the time is 2009/2010..cheers

  5. darius fantastic read, your friday posts are always top quality and if it werent for the announcement by YW, you could slide right into his slot without issue. thats a compliment to the both of you as you continually produce the most well reasoned, thoughtful, and well phrased analysis of the team we all love so so dearly. so thanks!

    i think we should post your 8 things over at “Le Grove” and ask for a response haha

    using the word “industry” to describe denilson is spot on, very diverse set of skills on that one. will be interesting to see him act in the full blown holding role, not as a partner for cesc or diaby/ramsey

  6. Gibbs is nowhere near as good as Traore.Denilson is shit.

  7. Very good shouts. I said as soon as I saw the fixture list, that as long as we’re there or there abouts come the final 10 games, it’s ours to screw up. We should be looking at 27 out of 30 points if we go into those games in good form.

  8. I like the armands traore he is a good player but why oh graceful and forgiving lord jesus does this adebayor pig still try and provoke my arsenal. He does not realize he is like a diseased swine with some cut off aids in his head. I will spit him when he come to highbury next time. I will kiss Toure though. He is my friendlyness.

  9. very wel said mate am with u all the way com on arsenal

  10. Also big gangsta man Alex Song Bilong. Him prove all the doubters dem wrong. I still think he can grow up and be like a monster makelele or maybe cyril makenaki he has potential and jesus truly does bless him. I like denilson too but he has a sqashed up face and why he always do a silly smile when he lose the ball. I dont know but one thing i have seen in my visions is big Abou knocking out that yellow dog robbie keane in derby day. I like colin pates too.

  11. Jammathon we have 41 from 19, we’ll have 43 from 20 if we win our game in hand.

  12. Brilliant piece! I have been telling friends that we should be the favorites for all the reasons above. That they provide the excuse of manu’s injuries for bad form and we have more key injuries and longer term injuries than them. Who gives a fuck if garry neville and johnny evans get injured? Rosicky, van persie, eduardo,clichy,nasri all bettr players that have been out for long periods and we are still fucking here!

  13. TheGreatGunnerB

    A
    No, we’ll have 44 from 20

  14. Chelsea’s aging squad will eventually be crippled with arthritis. Chelsea has fucking key pllayers missing for the CAN. Essien, mikel, Drogba and kalou. Who will hold the midfield? Since mikel and essien will be gone, ballack? Who will partner Anelka upfront providing the much needed tap ins kakouta?? Malouda?? With the deficiencies in their squad and lack of real replacements and a side already faultering, why shouldn’t Arsenal be seen as favourites???

  15. Oh how I’d love to win it again at White Flag Lane!! Three times!! How would the spuds hate that on their CV?!!!!

  16. Amazing write up thats also come at the perfect time. Sums up Arsenal at the moment and the question remains. Are you up for the fight??

  17. the period coming up will tell us all we need to know about this current crop of players

  18. @ young gunnerz. No we shouldn’t be labelled as favourites. That just isn’t our style. We thrive on being underdogs.

  19. Good post as usual…Stone cold….

    The only thing that can beat this Arsenal team is the players themselves imploding but despite the combined efforts of journos, pundits, hacks, trolls and doomers we are still here…proving the critics wrong every time and making them have to come up with new excuses.

    The other 3 reasons we will win are

    *The journos are dumb asses but know we are a credible threat and so will continue to extole the virtues of debt ridden ManUSA, Cheski and Oil City in comparison Wengerball. The greater the negativity the greater the fear.

    *Arsenal are the best team in the premier league…simplez

    * Ive put 100 quid down on us winning the League!!

  20. Hey NJ we gotta hit up that site for the game.

  21. Those lads are becoming more stronger and in their eyes the desires to win the league this season is there. Gooners 4 life

  22. P'TangYangKipperBang

    Excellent article! I don’t think I disagreed with anything. From what I am seeing in the blogs etc the feinthearts are more and more shamed into silence.

  23. Tunday:

    May I be the first to proclaim you as a genius?

    Great stuff!

  24. Which league table is Jammathon looking at? We do as stated in the article have “41 points after 19 games with a goal difference of +30”

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/football/eng_prem/table/default.stm

    BTW – Great article!

  25. i’m not a doomer or a naysayer, i backed us to win the title with cold hard cash. but i would not be so down on the opposition either. chelsea have a couple of fabulous young players in kakuta and sturridge and the rest of the team knows how to win the league. they will not fold up easily even without drogba et al. remember in the last ACN, they didn’t even drop a point. man utd seem to be coping fine without ronaldo – they beat us. i still think we’ll win it – but it will be a fight all the way to the end.

  26. Hello… i’m new here…

    this is great article.

  27. Kudos on the write up. Don’t for get Ramsey and spots of Wilshere…

  28. Great article. Very nice to see a blog that focuses on the positives of our team, are there many, instead of bashing wenger for not buying who ever the papers say we should. Our midfield has coped very well in the absence of cesc and diaby has somehow transformed into a powerful, confident attacking threat…never thought I would see that and lets hope his brilliant form continues.

  29. our team have more experience compared to last season… that is most important thing. now they knew how to attack and defense.
    they have more confident this season.

  30. clichydoubledeuce

    zarate for 36 million?! what the f*ck is his agent smoking?

  31. I wasn’t so eloquent or so brilliantly analytical, but i pretty much said the same thing some time back. 🙂 Good Piece

    http://bigfourza.wordpress.com/2009/11/13/why-i-think-were-gonna-win/

  32. There’s another reason: we have more gamechangers than any other top team in the league. Sometimes the team can’t break through no matter how many chances it creates, but, as in Aston Villa game, Fabregas came in and changed all that. This kind of performances we’ve see from Arshavin, Diaby and lately Ramsey. There are rumors that tv-series “Heroes” was inspired by Arsenal. Let ManUre depend on inconsistent Rooney, Chelski on Drogba, but with the Great Arse you’ll never know what’s gonna hit you.
    Great post!

  33. Great article i have a bet with a chav we will win the league with a game to go

  34. Great piece, with all of the points being bang on! Although there is one glaringly obvious point that I have noticed in our play over the last few months, that being our youthful exhuberance and quality of passing has enabed us to play to such a high tempo that we are always able to wear teams down regardless of their gameplan against us.

  35. Shayne at 12:27 a.m. Denilson’s goal against Hull was real shit. God I love that shit!
    Good article. Nice to see that in the age of unfettered capitalism some clubs kept their feet on the ground.

  36. PIRES absolutely thats my plan.. do you know if it will for sure be featured on the site??

    would love to have some running live chat with you and any other ACLFers looking to join in while actually watching the match.. we really need to take this place over

    Gooner4Life @1:13 -The greater the negativity the greater the fear.

    spot on… its so pathetically obvious to. but as someone from the US how do they get away with being so blatantly anti-Arsenal? is it bc we generate the least “paper” worthy news?

  37. Hey guys, if you are interested to write football related articles, you can now do so for free @

    http://thepenaltyspot.dreamhosters.com

    Check it out…first 5 persons to join become moderators!!!

  38. Someone’s had their prozac today.

  39. SomeRandomGunner

    Nice one Darius.
    I have one more reason, all Doomers and media will try to find some fault with whatever we do this will stop any complacency creeping in.

  40. The league is ours for the takimg as long as we dont drop points against the so called lesser teams, sunderland, burnley and man city should not be repeated. We can draw against man utd and liverpool but we must beat chelsea, for revenge atleast. Lets do this gunnerz lets bring the title home.

  41. Unarguably, Arsene wenger is the most unpredictable gambler in the league. Though arsenal is still in contension for the league, we ought not to loose focus cos every point matters at this stage. I see magic fabregas lifting the trophy if Arsene wenger can quit gambling,experiments and grooming for now and focus on points.
    Great article. PRINCE ELVIS.

  42. California Gooner

    Good to see the confidence. I have confidence too. We can win the league. But one game at a time.

    I remember thinking right before RVP got hurt that we would win as long as Cesc, RVP, Gallas or Vermaelen didn’t go down. RVP went down, our form suffered a bit, and now we are right back in it. Fingers crossed that the rest stay healthy. An acquisition like Arshivin was last year — a player who can come in and win a couple of close games– would put this beyond doubt in my mind.

  43. what is so “unpredictable” about him elvis? is he really that big of a gambler? gambling sounds like putting your club at tremendous financial risk for the possibility of short term gain… the complete opposite of what he’s done.

  44. @ tunday….right on!

  45. With the Arsenal all the way not matter what. I must admit that some performances in the past have left me feeling a little bit negative, but I am all for Wengerball.

    In Arsene we trust.

  46. GoonerinOz @ 1:06

    Lol…White Flag Lane. That’s brilliant mate.

  47. Great article and here are a couple more reasons.

    1. For 4 of the last 6 seasons Arsenal has picked up more points in the second half of the season than any premiership club, proving how strongly we usually finish.
    2. No club has picked up more points or scored as many goals as Arsenal in 2009! This has been a great year for us and proves we have finally found consistantcy.
    3. Eduardo is fit and getting better and better with each game. 3 goals in 4 games and starting to click with the midfield. Watch out Everton, I smell a brace and maybe even 3 crackers. That header against West Ham was pure class!

  48. Tunday!!! (Jan 8th 12.42am and 12.47am)

    You comments are some of the most entertaining I have read for years. Thank you so much for making my day.

    I also like Colin Pates!! Hilarious.

  49. Good points Boris godonov and Ricky rick. We certainly can call upon the strongest bench and group of players who could change a game. The biggest change from last season is self belief. This is why we have been undefeated since Chelsea.

    The other reason is we are playing better as a team…we have always had great players but never seemed to be able tobring them all into on homogenous wave of attack, midfield and defence and overcome the mentalbarrier in games we clearly could win.

    Oh and Tomas Vermaelen…the beast from belgium…aka the verminator…what a rock in defence and a great partnership with gallas.

  50. @NJ Gooner 12.27 am.

    I wrote an article yesterday about the change of guard in the Arsenal midfield that talks about Denilson and Song’s roles in part.

    Also, I agree with those who say that more negativity about Arsenal’s chances this season is a sign of fear, both from opponents and the anti-Arsenal establishment. It’s so much easier to criticize anything you can find, rather than acknowledge the reality that Arsenal is actually a threat.

    It’s not going to be easy though, but I’m confident the team will fight like mad.

  51. The Times talking about players of the half-season: “Song is better than we thought and Diaby is almost as good as AW has promised.”

  52. fantastic analysis, u know what you are talking about.being an arsenal supporter in kenya u cannot imagyn how happy i am becoz alexander song is in town.i will go and see him this weekend.

    arsenal til death

  53. Bout time something sensible was written bout our great club.

  54. There is only one reason that we will win the EPL and European thingy this year…..

    We have a better squad than any other team. In fact the best Arsenal squad I have ever seen. It has been that way since before the season began. We just have to watch it play out over 38 games and some European thingy fixtures.

  55. Whilst any man would feel a pang of bitterness at being supplanted in the affections of the Marias and the Fungunners of this electronic world, I question whether I could ever feel jealous of Ryan Babel, whom I have always considered the ugliest player in the premier league. It is interesting that his tolerable appearance when smiling should be thought to outweigh his manifest ugliness the rest of the time. Do women place more importance on a man’s smiling face than on his normal countenance? If so, why? For the first question, I will say that I am always suspicious of generalisations about the behaviour of men and women, which are usually ridiculous. In any case, the question could only be answered by extensive empirical research, which I am unable to perform at this time. Instead, I shall imitate the climatologists’ method, and just assume it is true. Why then is it so? I would suggest the man’s smile is imagined as being a response to the individual woman. Perhaps she sees the smile as revealing that the man is well-intentioned towards her. That would explain why she likes the man to smile. Do we not all prefer a smile to a scowl? And is it not because the smile promises friendliness? Why, though, should the attractiveness of the smile be important? Maybe it is simply that we prefer beauty to ugliness. Maybe. Another explanation is that the woman sees the man’s beauty as a reflection of her own. She sees herself as having a transformative effect on the man, like moving into the plain of an empty mirror. The greater the change, the greater the self-flattery.

  56. Good lord

  57. Would you like me to introduce you to Veronique, my friend in Pigalle, PZ? She can fix you up whichever way you swing, and she has mirrors, lots of em.

  58. When anyone is feeling as introspective as you seem to be, PZ, my advice is to shag your way through it.

  59. I think we’re coped admirably with the absence of RvP and the Bendybus. However I dont think we have a deep squad all over, we’ve just been lucky that Song, Gallas and Verminator have been fit almost all season. With Song gone for a month we’ll be tested in the middle and may the Lord have mercy on our souls if we’re put in a position where Silvestre needs to play as a CB for an extended amount of time

  60. campbell is coming styles.dont be scared.

  61. This is a very well written post.

    I was never going to be a victim of the media pepper spray aimed at blinding/confusing gooners across the globe and suggesting to us that we were not good enough to win the title, that Wenger’s ways were past it, we have no squad depth, we need to spend big to win and the list goes on.

    Any true gooner or football fan with an objective state of mind could have seen a majority of the points you have stated above from a distance but refused to do so to avoid being labelled naive (in still believing in Wenger’s ways) by other fans, the media and the so called experts.

    Im am glad Wenger’s way is starting to show signs of yielding dividends and that the so called football experts/ analysts on Sky, BBC, ESPN, blogs etc that had previously written us off are finally starting to keep their words to themselves in regards to Arsenal’s title hunt (eat your hearts out).

    As you clearly stated above, the squads of rivals are by far inferior to ours. They might have solid starting 11s (when all their players are fit – so do we) but when they have a few injuries, a glance at their benches tell you an interesting story of their squad depths.

    I have had a gut feeling from the pre season that our trophy drought was going to end in 2010, and I still stand firmly by this.

    Go Gooners

  62. Some pretty strange comments this morning…

    Spot on article Darius, can’t wait to see how it all pans out

  63. goonzilla – my sentiments exactly

  64. Damn right i’m up for the fight.

    Come on gunners!!!!

    Good post Darius.

  65. I think what most pundits dont realized that the Wenger system is different from then the” normal thrown the ball from the corner flag and get the lads to be physical and win battles and somehow score goals.” And then they cant understand why English cant win international tournaments.

    Arsene’s system depends on understaning the movements of players in the region. So he wants talented, young and intelligent players to do the needful. Out of these two talent and intelligence is the real mix he is searching for right now.

    I guess most of the pundits and hacks are too lazy to understand this.

  66. I think if Senderos leaves Wenger will get another defender. Which age thats a tough one. We have one youngster playing in bundesliga who I believe is playing and great football with nurenberg.

  67. Oh well never mind

  68. Harvard Nordtvet.

    Brilliant, Darius! Number 5 on your list is particularly important, I think. The best thing is that we continue to fly under the radar of many.

    Armand Traore has manned up brilliantly. He’s done what some of us were worried about and curbed a little of his attacking instinct, and made sure to be rarely, if ever, caught out down his flank in recent games. While concentrating more on being in the right place at the back (or rather, the left place), he still pushes on and offers an outlet.

    Having said that, he is 3rd choice leftback for a reason, and that is because he has two better leftbacks ahead of him.

  69. Pearls before swine or, as my father would have put it, “Like feeding a donkey strawberries, Bert”.

  70. Of the 3 left backs, I like Gibbs most. He has goals in him. All three are good going forward. Clichy is first on experience and speed. Traore is the least experienced although older than Gibbs. Traore has done well so far, and keeps improving.

  71. Good one mate.
    Gooner4Ever……

  72. Traore is in fact younger than Gibbs, and has made 15 more Premier League appearances.

  73. Excellent article Darius. My best points being number 2,3,4, 5.

  74. Very well said Darius.

    and so it goes….looks like after reflecting on 2009, the general feeling is one of optimism. HELL YEAH!

    I am definitely up for the fight. Time to welcome the EPL trophy to the Emirates for what I hope will be an extended stay (3 yrs at least).

    But first, tomorrow we must help young Landon Donovan understand what coming to the Emirates for the very first time feels like.
    (snow willing)

    RASERS!

  75. Will it be his first visit to Landon?

  76. By the way, Frank, thank you for your thoughtful advice.

    Alas, I’ve never been much of a shagger.

  77. Well there you go then, PZ. Who is to say who is and who isn’t. It is not a sport. No competition. No medals.

  78. Henry XIII was a great shagger. He would have been a great blogger.

  79. Signing Sol will be a masterstroke by Wenger.We cannot go into the run in fearing an injury to Gallas and TV.Silvestre is hopeless and Senderos is on his way.And putting Song back at CH will hurt our midfield.Sol can do a job for 6 mths till we sign a CH in the summer

  80. Didn’t that Annabel Chong get some kind of award for being a great shagger?

  81. I am not sure that he was really, Moopay. I wonder whether his hunting accident damaged more than his leg.

  82. Anybody hear what Gazidis had to say this morning on SSN ? Not a hint of deviation from Wenger. Ha ha ha. I expect this is a missed opportunity for Pyles to write some dirge about Gazidis now at the helm. Geoff on Le Groan is already up in arms.

    What a shocker – the chief executive of a football club agreeing with the manager.

  83. Oh really Frank… put him out of commission with the maids and mistresses did it ?

  84. I’ve always thought of Henry VIII as a c***, which should have made him perfect for shagging.

  85. Good writeup. But i feel we need a backup for billy or verminator. Am nt dat worried abt a striker

  86. Great article.

    I believe we can end on the top. When we finally will have Bendtner or an other real striker, adding Walcott’s quality to it, (actually we haven’t seen from him this season yet) there won’t be any squad to stop our attacking potential.
    However I am afraid because of Arsenal defence sometimes. Every time Arsenal plays I pray for 3 things;
    1. Arsenal win
    2. Nobody injuries
    3. Cleen sheet.
    I succeded only 4 times in every aspect, when I counted well, did I?

  87. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/teams/a/arsenal/8447304.stm

    He talks a lot of sense. Even if he does sound like Lloyd Grosman.

  88. Great article and I’m glad to see somebody pointing out the positives in this emerging team, I find it funny how some other sites have been abusive of Wenger and the side for so long and now are all jumping on board…These tend to be the racist bigoted sites filled with knuckle dragging idiots. Its sad because it gives Arsenal supporters a bad name.
    Sorry just really got to me.
    So acknowledging that Traore cant come this transfer window any ideas of likely targets?

  89. I don’t know if anyone has noticed the class act that Arsenal is.

    At a time where rumour mongering is rife and there’s the potential for misguided speculation to amplify anxiety within the ranks and to create restlessness – the Chief Executive of Arsenal hits the media on his own terms with Arsenal controlling their own news cycle.

    Takes pressure off Wenger and the team, and as it’s coming from the head honcho himself, far reduces the poisonous speculation. Message is clear:

    We’re not going to be reckless with our money because there’s pressure around; we’ve kept our squad together and signed them on long term contracts; Wenger and Fabregas ain’t going anywhere; and of course, we’re in the mix.

    Oh yeah – and Kroenke is not going to take over so y’all should just hold fire on your sensational headlines.

  90. I like dem play dat futbal so much I hold on to the best parts of the thing. But I cant sleep at night because I think the big team dat Staanford Bridge going to hurt our little playeers. But if we go and buy dat player near seven feet i won’t be afraid anymore and I can sleep at night. He’s got such long ledges it is only two steps and he is down the field already.

  91. You should try sleeping pills Wilston.

  92. Another brilliant thing is the emergence of players like Diaby (knock on wood) on a more consistent basis. Even if we dont buy anybody, I can still see us doing ok, as we have blooded so many players over the last few years and that policy is coming good.

  93. Great article Darius! As usual reading your or Yogi’s posts is great.

    I strongly believe Arsenal can win the title and even a double (champions league)!

    In response to all the post about the pundits thrashing Arsenal. I say we should let go so that when Arsenal wins it it will be even more painful for these so called experts as well as for Man U and Chelsea

    GO GUNNERS!!

  94. Gazidis believes the we’ve got a young squad capable of winning trophies this year. But, as importantly, we’ve got a young squad capable of doing it for a sustained period of time over the next four or five years.

    I believe, do you?

  95. Wengerball – Is the Pope Catholic?

  96. 2. We’re the most lethal striking force in Europe

    69 goals in 29 games in all competitions from 18 different players. That’s an average of 2.38 goals a game and still maintaining that lethal edge without our preferred talisman. Enough said.

    — Thats not true

    If you can come up with the stats for Before RVP and Bendtner injured and a stat after their injury, you will see the difference.

    The average is showing a false image.

  97. It will be interesting to see what Wenger does with Traore and Gibbs once Clichy comes back. My guess is the former 2 players will be deployed elsewhere if required. Either as orthodox left wingers or possibly as right back cover.

  98. Fulham/portsmouth has already been cancelled. Is this gonna happen to us?

  99. Sam @ 12:28 is right, we’ve only scored 19 goals in the last 12 games.

  100. Wenger is walking a tightrope this january window.If we dont buy and fail to win the title from the position we are in there will only be one man to blame.
    The title is in our grasp dont let it slip away for the sake of saving £10m.

  101. I wouldn’t have expected such a tall man to enjoy tightrope-walking.

  102. Wenger still has fears the game might be cancelled, he just said it on arsenal tv online

  103. ”Rosicky is back and completely fit”

    i wonder how long for. i also wonder when bendtner’s results will appear in the news today

  104. I am liking the majority positivity here today, but there are a few who still will not learn.

    Muppet if at all possible and either gibbs or traore have it in them to play at right back that would be fantastic. Traore has already featured left wing and he wasn’t bad if I remember.

  105. Hey Zap, 2 avatars??

  106. Red Army… do you honestly believe that spending that 10 million your looking for will guarantee a difference? Dont you think if the Prof finds someone who would legitimately improve the squad (a la AA23) he would make a move? Is spending money for the sake of spending money really what you want our manager doing?

    EVEN IF HE DID SPEND, and god forbid we lost the title, you would find something else to blame him for.. so please be honest with yourself

  107. hey els.

    accidentally tampered with my e-mail adress..

    We will have to watch out for Donovan he will be dangerous, gallas and vermaelen will need to keep an extra eye on him….

  108. Zap you donut, forget Donovan

  109. Sam. Are you suggesting that since Bendy and RVP are injured it invalidates the work already done?

    Stop scraping the bottom of the barrel.

  110. Since Sam lives at the bottom of the barrel, he’s well placed to scrape it.

  111. CharlieG you are William

  112. darius is sam wrong in saying that before the sunderland match we were averaging well above 3 goals per match and now its 2.38. there has to be some effect of rvps absence and also does this not shows that arsene should buy a striker…

  113. we have worked even harder since rvp’s loss- well, since the chelsea game anyway,

    Come On Hull on Saturday!! I have a feeling they could rob chelsea of some points, let’s hope so- Then it will be Come On The Arsenal!!

  114. Excellent post Darius.

    Interestingly, I noticed that some of the most virulent doomers over the past two years have piped in, expressing support for your piece. Not a word of apology to Wenger for their virulently and racially bashing Eboue, Song Diaby et al in the past. (Exhibit A: Boris Godunov.)

    One really wonders if they are up for the homestretch especially if we have the inevitable setbacks.

  115. same havent we conceded less since then as well?

    Its al very well and good to spend the extra 10m to apease the fans. what happens if whoever we bring becomes a flop la Berbatov, Will you be happy then?

  116. same=Sam

  117. Top post Darius. Stone Cold Fridays are becoming a treat.

  118. sam, .abc if you want to be overly critical then you could take a reading from after RvP’s injury, however the initial reaction of the team was worry, as it turns out now there was a genuine concern of his career being over. This caused a slight slump, think we could maybe let that slide. But if you look more recently we are right back up there, and with Eddy coming into his own once again, I think the 100 goals for the season is very realistic.

    Zap I’m not going to get to concerned with donovan, I think he’ll have a culture shock.

    I have a feeling Vermo is going to bag a brace.

  119. What is this thing about knowing how to win trophies? You win trophies by winning games, and if there’s one thing this squad knows how to do it’s win games.

  120. hey nj you can watch the match in” FADO” 15th and locust st city center philly its becoming a good old arsenal bar. i enjoyed this blog am looking for a double
    goooooooooooners

  121. Got to say that I do love Darius’s friday post, it’s great having variety of a same great standard that YW provides.

    So a little nod to the constant Arsenal info and opinion that Yogi provides.

    *nod*

  122. Good read Darius – nice one. I was starting to get all giddy with excitement towards the end of point 8. Imagine winning the title against either of those teams… imagine Ade’s face… but I must stop myself getting carried away!

  123. All good points. If house is to with stand the elements it must be built upon a good foundation. The Gunners have down this. The house is solid. A good team is a mixture of young and old. The older players are there to guide the younger players. Buying big name players is a two edged sword. It can work in the short run however in the long run it will kill a team. Developing younger players is the key. Wenger is doing this. This is why the Gunners house is solid. Thanks
    http://bobbygee.wordpress.com/

  124. The was a definite slump after the RVP injury, we lost 4 out of the next six matches.

    The scoring drought was not only because RVP was out of the team but also his replacement ie Arshavin and Eduardo had to get used to the change is position.

    Van Persie himself had not scored in the beginning of the season for that same reason, remember when the hacks were writing that for all the goals we scored the front 3 had not contributed.

    Infact Van Persie did not score until Man City in September, and Eduardo and Arshavin had 3 between them.

    Average goals per game before and after Sunderland is neither here nor there.

    Anyway here are the stats.

    All competitions Before Sunderland:

    Scored 55 avg 2.89 conceded 19 avg 1.05

    All competitions after:

    Scored 19 avg 1.58 conceded 12 avg 1

    Premier league only

    Scored 15 avg 1.875 conceded 7 avg 0.875

  125. Sorry

    Before sunderland we scored 55in all competitions averaging 2.89 per game while letting in 1.05 per game. Counting only the PL before Sunderland it was 36 goals at an average of 3.27 per game, conceding 20 @1.05 a game

    After RVP injury we’ve scored 19 in all competitions 1.58 a game conceding an average of exactly 1per game. In the Premier league We’ve managed to score 15 in 8 games 1.88 a game conceded 7 goals in 8 games.

  126. averages averages averages….

    all that matters is that we have more fight against everton and beat them

  127. Does anybody know when lord Wenger is addressing the press rabble later ?

  128. Before the injury to RvP, we had scored at least once in every match, and more than once on 16 out of 19 occasions. Following the injury to RvP, we failed to score in 3 of the next 4 matches. As wengerball says, that was a period of adjustment. In subsequent matches, we have scored just over 2 goals per game on average (compared to just under 3 before the injury). We have failed to score only once, and that was when we fielded our youth team in the Champions League. One might conclude, then, that the loss of RvP has caused the efficiency of our attack to fall by about one third. Other injuries must also be taken into account. The difference between our best attack with RvP and our best attack without him would be somewhere between the two. Let’s say our best attack without RvP would score 2.5 goals per game on average. Only one team has scored at that rate in the premier league this season. Can anyone guess who?

  129. @ Sam and Wengerball

    Why the artificial distinction of pre- and post-RVP and Bendter injuries, or pre- and post-Sunderland? Perhaps DS should not have used the phrase “strike force” because many of the goals were not from the strikers. But that in itself renders your fixation with when they sustained their injuries even less meaningful. DS said that we had scored 69 goals in 29 games, giving an average of 2.38 goals per game. Sam couldn’t query his arithmetic, but was trying to find another way to make a good statistic into a less good statistic. Well, tough luck. 69 goals from 18 different scorers at the halfway point is ALL good news.

  130. As deceiving as my name is, im currently in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. But even if i was in NJ i wouldnt head down to Philly, im a north jersey man so when i use the phrase “lets go to the city” im talking about the best city in the world, not sketchy philadelphia 😉

    Any Gooners/ACLFers watching streams should head to this site PIRESAHOLIC and I watched the FA Cup last weekend. got a running chat and a quality stream. he and i enjoyed it, and you all should join

  131. 10 mins muppet

  132. ALSO

    I’m really curious about this whole snow business

    **********SOMEONE please tell me, does it rarely snow in the southern half of england? is that why its so “crippling” to your transport networks/roadways? or is the concern over pitch conditions?

    As I am a US Gooner, I need to be enlightened on these types of things.. so thanks in advance!!!!!

  133. Ivan Gazidis interview with sky (http://www.skysports.com/story/0,19528,11670_5841381,00.html)

    ‘Spending money by giving it to other clubs for the talent that they have is not the answer to all solutions’

    ‘We won’t be making moves to respond to short term pressure and we won’t spend irrational amounts of money’

    Two of my favourite quotes from an interesting interview with Ivan Gazidis, that demonstrate why financially Arsenal are the envy of the football world…

  134. Viera signs for Citeh.

  135. Tell us somehting we dont know Zap, donut

  136. Limpar Assist thank for the memory jog, new I recognised the voice!!

  137. @FunGunner

    As I said pre- and -post Rvp is neither here nor there, it’s only brought up in response to .abc’s post about the averages showing the need to buy a striker.

    As far as I am concerned as long as we score 1 more than the opposition I’m fine whether it’s 1-0 or 5-4. Even less of a concern is where those goals come from, so far everyone has chipped.

    It’s great that we have goals coming from everywhere, imagine the problems for the opposition not knowing who is our main threat.

  138. shhhhhhh William press conference starting, it actually is

  139. @Nj

    Contrary to popular belief snow is not a regular occurence in most of England, especially the south.

    Most Cities/councils are ill prepared for anything more that a smattering of snow. so yes the transport system take a beating. Most people don’t even know what snow tryres are.

    While most pitches can deal with the weather, the games are called off mostly for “health and safety reasons” clubs do not want to be on the wrong side of a lawsuit due to injury in or around their stadiums.

  140. We Are Not Guided By Fear

  141. Just one worry mate. We didnt have an injury to either Gallas or Varmaelan yet. Thats where we will have a problem in case we have an injury. I think we can cope with injury on all positions of the pitch apart from these two. Sylvetre is not good enough. If touchwood both G & V stay fit all through the season till the end, i really dont see any reason why we are not champions at the end of the season.

  142. @ wengerball
    Then I should have added .abc’s name to the reply. Nevertheless….

    Sam said: “The average is showing a false image.”

    You said: “Sam @ 12:28 is right, we’ve only scored 19 goals in the last 12 games.”

    So I ask again, why the artificial distinction between the last 12 games and the previous 17? The figure of 2.38 is the average number of goals scored by Arsenal so far this season. We have scored more than anyone else. That is just the truth.

  143. Fascinating history of British winters:
    http://www.netweather.tv/index.cgi?action=other;type=winthist;sess=

    Winter weather in Great Britain is extremely variable, and only an incompetent council would fail to prepare for cold weather.

  144. Bentdner back for the crucial period!

    maybe even stoke….

  145. this is the most confident i’ve been in the last few years of winning something – particularly the Premiership. But as a lot of people have been saying, an injury to V or G could be fatal to our chances. I’m not sure that Sol is the man to cover either of those 2. As much as i dislike Silvestre (i can’t believe i’m saying this) i think he’s a better option than a 35 year old Campbell.

    I’m not worried about averages before & after certain injuries, i’m just happy that the likes of Diaby, Edu, Ramsey etc are stepping up to show that they are as good as AW has been saying.

    We have always been at our worst when we’re relying on one player to get the goals/assists or whatever (TH14’s last season?) and the fact that we’ve had 18 different goalscorers is astounding. So as bad as RVP’s absence is, it has prompted the 2nd tier of the Arsenal players to step up and show they are capable of winning things – together.

    Please dont let tomorrow’s game be snowed off…

  146. That was rather fascinating, thanks Pz.

  147. It rarely snows in the southern counties of England. Kent and the Brighton are exceptions. When it does snow most areas are ill-prepared principally becuase specialised equipment and materials for roads and railways do not cost in, it would almost never be used. Most importantly though there are few appropriately skilled staff. They would be redundant most of the time. In countries or areas where heavy snowfall is normal it clearly makes sense to make all the right provisions in terms of equipment, materials and skills etc.

    Curiously though this year when it snowed in London it had little effect on hospitals, public services, private businesses, daytime rail services, primary schools or Italian, Greek, Turkish or French bakeries. It did however completely wipe out secondary schools, English bakeries, evening trains and an Arsenal match.

  148. Hey Limpar, Pz, els, Frank, Firstlady, muppet…to the whole gang…[don’t know how you can listen to this drivel.]

    Lovely work as usual Darius.

    Up the Arsenal! Here’s to hoping the game is on tomorrow.

    Cheers.

  149. Looking at the training pics in the snow and you can almost touch the unity in the squad LOL. Great to see Rosicky back, I have a feeling his return is underplayed. He is truly like a new signing and his introduction will do wonders to our play. You read it here first Biatches.

    @ NJGooner – Yeah man i’ll meet u there hopefully it doesnt get cancelled. And I also got to know a member on the site and he told me that the main channel is even better but its only for members. I’m going to convince him to make me a member and then I can probably do the same for you. We’ll see how it goes.

  150. I agree everyone looks like they get along, and Darius i thnk you should’ve included that. aswell

    last season gallas and toure didn’t talk to eachother, bentdner and adebayor hated eachother-

    it’s different now coz they’re all fighting for eachother and that’s more important for me

  151. Well said george, let’s hope we can bring our goal per game average up by chewing up the toffees

  152. I have a question. I want to sign up to ATVO but i’m running Mac OSX and was wondering if it would work without Windows Media player. Is there a solution to this? Any Mac users??

  153. I watch it on the mac, but it is pretty flakey. and no fullscreen 😦

  154. I think they are changing it cos the media player plugin thingy they use for the thursday night games night is able to fullscreen, but the one they use for the highlights (which i think is the quicktime plugin on mac) doesn’t. So hopefully they will put all of it over to the new plugin in the future, although they haven’t said they will.

  155. From ATVO FAQ:

    “I have an Apple Mac, can I access?
    As Microsoft Digital Rights Management (DRM) licence system is not fully supported on Mac OS, some limitations apply to MAC users, most specifically the ability to download clips is not available. This means that MAC users of this service should ensure they have sufficent bandwidth to stream the clips used ”

    According to the website, you’ll also need Windows Media Components for Quicktime .

  156. yeah you need a plugin called flip4mac i think it is. but like i said they use a new plugin for certain things, like the games night.

  157. Bloody Microsoft!!

  158. no, bloody amateur night ATVO for using a crap plugin.

  159. You could set up a virtual pc on your mac.

  160. I have Windows Media Player. But not 9. I downloaded the .sitx file but needed to download stuffit expander to open it. We’ll c how this goes.

  161. I have a similar problem with my linux machine. What you gonna do? Wine I guess. Or whine.

  162. Ok i’m completely lost now I downloaded 9 but still having the same issues. Do I have to download the codecs or sumthin?

  163. Absolutely well put.

    I am up for the fight and believe in this team more than ever.

    COME ON ARSENAL.

  164. the togo national team coach has come under gunfire in angola

  165. f*cking stupid idea to have it in angola anyway

  166. Video codecs

    Microsoft Windows Media Video codec versions 7, 8, and 9
    Note that Windows Media Player for Mac OS X does not support the Windows Media Video 9 Screen codec.

    Is there noway around this bollocks?

  167. nasirjonesnasri

    Tunday,

    Please stop posting here. You’re far from funny, and the fake jamaican accent thing is getting pretty old. Why do you think they stopped making Ali G? That shit stopped being funny a long time ago. Thank you in advance for your attention to this matter.

  168. It works on mine, I’ve said how it works, if you can’t work it out you must be retarded or take advice from people who don’t use a mac but can look up faqs

  169. Joe B thanks 4 the help but if I knew you were going to be such a prick I wouldn’t have afforded you the pleasure. Now fuck off.

  170. The key is the confidence of the TEAM that matters most not the cofidence of Wenger, his wengerball or the fans ! They on the field. I won’t say much.

  171. moody. i only offered help but you ignore it in place of someone who does not understand the problem. sorry for being a prick but it’s hardly surprising that i get frustrated when getting ignored for being helpful. peace out

  172. england should host the acn

  173. Champions In May

    God willing, we’ll be champions in May. Chavski players are oldies and Abramovich will need to spend another 400+ to retool the team. Manu are just Manu, burnt out. Rafalution has also failed.

    All Hail the master thinker Arsene Wenger.

  174. I didn’t ignore it I downloaded flip4mac and still can’t manage to run this URL: http://tv.arsenal.com/

    oh well fuck it

  175. How do we know Poliziano cant use a mac???

  176. I can’t, Duke. I don’t like Apple. F*cking iPods. F*cking iPhones. F*cking iTunes. F*cking iMacs. F*cking MacBooks.

  177. Set up a virtual pc. You’ll probably need to find a copy of windows.

  178. I bet Ashley Cole has an iPhone.

  179. Brilliant post. Loving the optimism.

    I have linked to this post as part of my new blog http://afcninetyeight.blogspot.com/

    How do I contact you to ask for you to link from this website?

  180. I had parallels at some point Poli. Felt like cheating LOL

  181. PIRES thats excellent news.. i was kind of glad handing with one of them before you and i started chatting.. but im most nervous the match will be cancelled!!

    im starting to worry about all you “across the pond” i just find it hilarious how little snow it takes to throw everyone over there into a complete panic

    cmon weather and COYG!!!!!!!!!!!!

  182. oh and PIRES let me know if you resolve those issues… im a MAC person and have been hesitant to sign up for ATVO bc of those issues

  183. PIRESAHOLIC have you tried restarting your computer. I know it’s really pedantic but sometimes people forget that you have to restart your browser or even your computer for new components and plugins to work properly.

    Downloading flip4mac should do the trick but if you’re still experiencing problems it might be an idea to use a different browser to see if that makes a difference (I use Firefox). I don’t know a great deal about computers but I’d try those things before I gave up entirely.

  184. The driver of Togo’s bus was killed

  185. football’s insignificant when you hear this kind of news

  186. I dont have an iphone but i do have a phone.

    How did that iphone win that gadget of the decade, surely that should have been the sat nav. I mean how good is that invention, no longer do we have to rely on the other half to give us wrong directions whilst struggling to read an upside down fukin map.

  187. Just to clarify I’m a MAC user and although I can’t download off ATVO, I can stream no problems at all. But as the FAQ states I do have sufficient bandwidth to compensate I guess.

  188. Yeah DukeGoonem now we have a machine that can gives us wrong directions and lead us up some random, god forsaken road while the map on the screen swivels 360 degrees. Is technology grand.

  189. *

  190. You must still be a young man, Duke. For older married couples, the only time they have a conversation is when the wife is trying to give the husband directions in the car. Satnav has ruined that, and brought many marriages to perpetual silence.

  191. LOL @ Serk

    Yeah i’ll try the things you mentioned Serk and i’ll make sure to inform you if it works out NJ. I just find it kind of shortsighted by the club not to have instant support for mac users. Mac users are definitely on the increase in recent times but compatibility issues have always dogged us. I know i’m probably being an idiot for not figuring this out but it really shouldnt be difficult at all.

    With regards to the cancellations of the games across the pond.

    Suck it up n grow some balls ;-P

  192. Yeah and about that Togo thing. Its just horrible and highlights that even though were all leading fairly safe and comfortable lives there are places in the world where violence and chaos reign supreme. Its quite sobering to tell you the truth. I don’t blame the gunmen I blame the society of today that has allowed things to deteriorate to such a state in the continent of Africa. We have to be aware that our lifestyles come at a hefty costs to people we may never see or meet.

  193. I hate the very idea of ‘satnav’. A whole generation growing up who will never be able to read a map.

    Someone on the radio the other day drove to Cornwall using it and when asked, ‘What did you think of Devon’, answered, ‘I didn’t go there’.

    Perfect invention for capitalists. Money and ignorance in one device.

  194. Sorry Serk, always blame gunmen.

    Things get bad. Don’t shoot people – unless they are trying to shoot you, obviously.

  195. Making a purchase in the current market will need to be a very thoughtful process for Wenger if indeed he chooses to move in that direction. Wenger has presided over an unprecedented period of player development and he could easily decide to avoid spending money. The player development has been extraordinary.

    Young Ramsey is such a dynamic player. He is growing with each start on the pitch. When injured players start coming back from the treatment table, it is going to be hard for Wenger to drop Ramsey from the starting eleven.

    So, as things have been developing from this cycle of injuries we now see not only Ramsey making himself indespensible but also Diaby. The problem for Wenger are two players who have made themselves certain starters and who are both scoring the most exciting goals.

    The feeling that exists within me is that Ramsey and Diaby are going to dominate the midfield in much the same way as Fabregas. Potentially, the three of them will be one of the most awesome midfields in Europe.

    This current team, even though some of the strikers have been in limbo due to injuries, have established the most horrendous goal scoring machine in Europe. Why are we looking to purchase a striker?

    The most obvious fragility in terms of depth exists in the defensive centre back position should either Vermalen or Gallas go down with an injury. But, what player could we purchase who is worth his salt would be willing to sit on the bench? From this perspective I can understand Campbell coming back into the fold. Someone who can step in on the occasion if required. Yet we still have Djouru who will wish to have playing time once he recovers. An embarassment of riches. I agree with ‘Stone Cold’. Arsenal are on the verge of a period of unprecedented success both in the premiership and in Europe.

  196. Whenever I do something wrong, I always curse society for making me the way I am. Thus have I enjoyed the sleep of the innocent every night of my life.

    I wonder, PIRESAHOLIC, have you ever considered writing a self-help book? Opinions like yours are in great demand. Some people, of course, are not content with blaming an airy concept like society for their behaviour. They need a particular person to blame. In those cases, recovered memories are often very effective.

  197. c-bob – I’ve never ever once come close to disagreeing with the nth part of anything you have to say.
    However.
    I love maps. I read maps like other people read books. I collect maps like others collect train numbers. I wander along shelves of maps with a dry mouth and sweating palms like other men peruse shelves of pornography. In short I bow to no one in my appreciation of maps.
    But.
    The sat nav and the map are not incompatible, they are brothers, cousins at least. They work together seamlessly and should never be divided. The gprs and the map got me from Plymouth to Minehead off road on my mountain bike and while I could have used a compass (which of course I had as well) the magic compass is much more fun.
    People are stupid not their tools.

  198. Hmmm. I’m in moderation. Must be for disagreeing with someone.

  199. So your telling me first world governments and the people that vote those governments in aren’t in the slightest responsible for what happens in third world countries? How the fuck did they get the guns in the first place?

    I’m just saying that in today’s society your conditioned to ignore whats going outside your bubble. I didn’t mean that you can blame society if you decided you wanted to shoot up a bus load of players. Hell the guy probably enjoyed letting off a few rounds. I was just saying what are the factors that enabled the shooter to be in that position? Sometimes things are best viewed from a macro perspective.

  200. This seems like a good time to promote my new book. It’s called, You’re innocent (but everyone else is guilty).

  201. How old are you Poliziano?

  202. To Serk & NJ

    I restarted my computer and i’m happy to say that its now working. Download that Flip4Mac thingy and it should work. Make sure you uninstall Windows Media player though as its outdated. Use Quicktime and Flip4mac as Joe B recommended.

    Cheers

  203. Oh, sorry Serk, I meant Piresaholic.

    Before you ask me, I am old enough to view things from a macro perspective.

  204. When it comes to guns, I blame the Chinese, who invented gunpowder. After them, I blame the arabs, who made the first guns. I agree that one must view things from a macro perspective.

  205. @ Piresaholic

    consolsbob and Poliziano are choosing to mock, but I understand your point – individuals are of course morally responsible for their own actions, but society and the wider world creates the environment in which those decisions are taken, and which influences those choices.

  206. Thank you FG.

    ATVO is great btw

  207. Of course, Fun, you are correct.

    Society is to blame.

  208. Perpetual silence in a marriage can be a blessing.

  209. @consolsbob

    It’s always easier to set up an Aunt Sally argument and knock that down than to address a genuine, rational argument. So if you can’t be bothered to debate the issue, hey, mock away.

  210. It’s not that simple, though, is it Bob? When it comes to exonerating ourselves, we are satisfied with whatever scapegoat our sophistry can make plausible; but when it comes to the macro perspective, we don’t want to blame just any society, but the specific society we dislike, or that the newspapers tell us we should dislike. We then trace causes back until we achieve our aim, and no further.

  211. Exactly PZ. You must have read Andorra.

  212. That’s fine consolsbob, I kind of guessed as much. It’s just a little mistake, which is why I didn’t mention anything.

    PIRESAHOLIC I’m glad you’ve sorted out your computer issues. Enjoy ATVO.

    I think that ultimately it’s an undeniable fact that the social, economic and political landscape of the less economically developed countries are heavily shaped by the motivations (especially the economic motivations) of the more economically developed countries. But having said that one can not say that an individual is exempt from blame for his or her actions on this basis (holding a machine gun to a bus full of innocent individuals for no less than 15 minutes is no small feat and cannot be accepted on any moral grounds).

    I know the point that you were trying to make PIRESAHOLIC. I think that so does everyone else. But you will find that ACLF attracts a very intelligent collection of readers. When you make a flawed argument or comment it will be picked up very quickly. And some of the regulars being of a slightly mischievous nature might choose to educate and correct you by means of busting your balls. Take this in the good natured (if slightly sarcastic) way that I’m sure it’s intended and you will find reading the comments section here not only good fun but also a good learning experience as well. That at least has been my experience.

  213. Rat Race….It’s a digrace

  214. Yes Yes Surk Da Turk, you make some interesting points rude boy, when you be coming at me like dat I feel what your saying, brother.

    It was a disgrace surk da turk, dis cant be continuing in the massees and upetting the ambience, you feeling me Surk Da Turk? Dis has to stop, brother, it has to stop surk da turk. Dis be true and dat be true, brother

  215. I don’t know where to turn.

    Fun has gone all serious on me. I should be upset because she is a favourite of mine, yet Pz is just so sharp.

    What to do?

    What to think?

  216. tink wat you like brother, do wat you like, tis de only way to be rude boy, just ask surk da turk or zap da donut

  217. I’m afraid we’re last year’s models, Consolsbob. FunGunner has discarded us in favour of Ryan Babel and Piresaholic.

  218. Football is not immune from these acts of terrorism and it could just as easily have happened anywhere in the world. Very sad for Angola and football fans around the world. It puts it all into perspective and tells us not to take anything for granted.One world under one banner of football.

  219. So sad, So obviously true Pz.

    He is still ugly but my love for Fun is forever.

  220. My Aunt Sally had a horrible temper. I will never my cousin Colin’s sixth birthday. Three of us ended up in hospital, six childrens’ parents removed them from our school and Aunt Sally spent the night in the cells.

  221. I forgot forget

  222. My grandfather tried to reason with her and she got him in a headlock, follwed by a double nelson. We never saw him again.

  223. I have just been listening to Armand on Arsenal TV and I must say he sounds like a very level headed good guy.

    I hope he can continue to improve and put Clichy under pressure when he comes back.

  224. Apparently she sat on his face until he could no longer breathe.

  225. Plucky woman though. Knew her own mind, and you have to admire that.

  226. This is Wenger’s response to “Operation bullshit” from Madrid
    “‘We wrote them a letter. We do not say that Messi and Kaka will sign next week here. If one day we want to sell a player and they are interested, they can call us. They don’t have to go through the newspapers.’

    ‘We have no intention of selling him (Fabregas). Contrary to what people have been saying, he has a longer contract than you think (2016).’

    I really loathe Madrid and Barcelona. Arrogant suckers, full of themselves and full of shit, they disrespect everyone.

  227. I didn’t know that about Cesc’s contract 1 loose cannon.

  228. If we didn’t have so much class about our club then I would be all for Wenger talking up the potential move for Messi.

    The Barca and Real crap is just so ridiculously boring now.

  229. I still love the Spaniards. You can all say ten hail Marys and twelve acts of contrition.

  230. PZ @11.23
    Muppet said Henry X111 not the V111th, must be a c*** from another country.

    Stew, I share and understand your appreciation of maps. My wife makes fun of me by buying them for me, including a book of world transit maps and huge motherf***er atlas for Christmas that we use as a spare front door in cold weather.

  231. ……………………..BABEL………………………………..

  232. ……………………………BABEL…………………………

  233. ……………………………BABEL…………………………

  234. ……………………………..BABEL………….……………………

  235. …………………………………BABEL……………………..…………

  236. Am loving it. A superstar amonst us. That’s what we need.

    LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOL

  237. Ahhhhhhhhh.If only it was in French. Can see Sagna pitched against spitting a couple of words too.Or maybe RVP has a hidden talent there.

  238. I miss Song already.

  239. Quiet out there Maria…Poor Ryan Babel, At one time on his way to Arsenal hailed as the new Thierry Henry..isnt everbody? But had his career ruined by Benitez now scraping the barrel …sad. Lost respect for the guy when he dived against us in the Champions league decider against Liverpool.

    Is the Arsenal v Everton game still going on or not people the suspense is killing me?

  240. game is still going ahead now, they are bunson burning the steps around the ground. the scousers are obviously making their way down but it could still get called off at the last knockings. there is still some icey snow just outside the complex which could cause a hazard to some. which then could turn into a lawsuit against highbury and islington council. or Arsenal fc.

  241. Cesc is off to Barcelona in the summer. La porta asked for some signed Arsenal merchandise and our generous captain will oblige.

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