Third For Grabs, Transfers And Mental Anguish

As the Premier League focus shifts to Eastlands this evening and the possibility that third place might be sealed without even playing, Arsenal’s ‘woes‘ are having the Alka Seltzer of transfer talk this morning  which focusses on the goalkeepers. Joe Hart is the subject of a ‘bid being prepared‘ story despite the fact that he may well be the Manchester City Number One next season, to begin with at least, making it very unlikely that his current employers would agree to any deal, no matter what the player may desire.

If Wenger does not have a Hart then he may like to cast his gaze to the East where the heavily-lacquered eyes of Gianluigi Buffon are fluttering seductively, hiding the nervousness at the prospect of being given the elbow by his Old Lady. And at the start the next Premier League campaign, the odds must be fairly short, in a decimal kinda way, that neither will be wearing the Arsenal goalkeeper’s jersey, looking like a Yeoman out of Star Trek.

Amid the criticism that is raining in on the squad comes, for the most part, the admission that scapegoating Fabiański is the wrong course to follow, even if the critics are so blinded by their desire to blame someone. He is currently the first choice goalkeeper through Almunia’s injury, real or otherwise, and as such is there to be shot at. However, the common theme is that the Pole is not a Number 1, he is a back-up at best. Which is exactly what he is; the first choice back-up, there to cover when the first choice goalkeeper is not in the team.

He has made mistakes, there is no denying that. Yet he is playing behind a back four which is clinging to its form by the tips of their fingernails. He is playing behind a midfield where form is an absent partner, mournfully missed. Holding one individual as the root cause is a dangerous path to tread, especially when the collective are equally to blame. That Sol Campbell has been voted Player of the Month is an indicator of the problems which have been encountered recently.

I have nothing against Campbell and would give him enormous credit for his form. However, in the absence of Fàbregas, I would have expected Nasri or Rosicky to step up to the plate, driving the team forward. Too many of the squad are immersed in a run of indifferent form, lacking the mental strength as high profile defeats ended domestic and european trophy challenges.

How Wenger resolves this problem is difficult to decide; most of the resolution must come from the players themselves. A lot of talk is about ‘winning’ mentality, the strength that previous squads have had in lifting trophies. Whilst my memory is far from perfect, I do not recall concurrent injuries occurring to key personnel in those eras. The squad system is designed to rotate and cover injuries but not to the extent which are being suffered at the moment.

That is not an excuse however for some of the performances. A number of the players are internationals and have been underperforming, the disappointment of a failed campaign tangible in their form. In itself, that indicates that the players had the desire and belief that they could win trophies this season. The part that is missing is handling that disappointment and recovering which is taking too long. 2007/08 showed similar traits as the title slipped from their grasp, arguably that was a harsher lesson than this season. Could that be a fundamental reason for the disheartened state of some of the support this time around, a feeling that those experiences have not been entirely drawn upon?

Win A Stadium Tour

Gooner Gifts has kindly donated An Adult Legends Emirates Stadium Tour For Two as a prize for answering the following question:

Who am I? I scored 49 goals in 179 appearances for Arsenal including a famous 111th minute strike.

Email your answer, name, age and contact email here. Competition closes at midnight, Sunday May 9th 2010. Any entries received after this date will be consigned to the electronic waste basket and totally ignored.

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’til Tomorrow.

Posted on May 5, 2010, in Arsenal, Football, Premier League, Premiership, Soccer, Transfer Gossip and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 458 Comments.

  1. Second

  2. Morning Yogi. Another nice post though not much to say today. Terrible weather here in Nairobi, raining hard and a lot of rain in a third world city means gridlock. About Joe Hart remember that Mancity with their petrol dollars don’t really need to balance their books – or do I sound like Harry Redknapp? Hoping for a draw or city win so that Wenger may give the youngguns a chance to show us what they’ve learnt in the last year. Terrible weather though!

  3. arsenehollis

    Yogi – I think the key point you make is in regard to Campbell getting player of the month.

    Form deserted our best available players when it was needed most. We played a good enough 11 to beat the Scum, we still aren’t sure how we lost to Wigan.

    As Arsene Wenger siad:

    “Talent is not the question, many players have talent. It is being able to master your talent when you need it most that is greatness.”

    We have a lot of silky skillful players, but it seems too few with enough balls right now to win a title. That is probably part of youth.

    In the absence of Cesc, TV, and RVP we lack leaders, only Campbell is up with them. (Forget Gallas, he has never done it for us as a character)

    Song, Denilson, Nasri, Walcott, Ramsey will all get there, but they need some help right now.

    Chamakh is a good start, but we still need a couple more with some fire in them – we have all the technique, youth and speed you could want.

  4. If you look at the reasons for this season’s ‘failings’ in a rational manner, regarding concurrent injuries etc, then the recent criticisms do seem over the top.

    However, being a fan doesn’t necessarily equate with rational thinking. Football is tribal and Arsenal are our passion.

    The feelings I’ve had for this season are of repetitive embarrassment at being outplayed in the big games and ending with an inability to close out the season in a professional manner.

    Unlike tactical voting, football is with the heart more than with the head

  5. Great post Yogi

    Too many of our so called good players threw the towel in after the Barca game.The lack of fight except for Sol has been a disgrace in recent matches.They should be trying till the final kick of the season

    As for Fabianski not good enough and never will be

  6. Nice post as usual YW. There is one thing all Arsenal fans both the Doomers and optimist alike seem to agree on and it is that we need reinforcement and freshening up of our team. No one is infallible and Arsene too would look at this season in retrospect and see a lot of things he could have done better and differently.

    Calls for the managers head is not only stupid, but its also an undermining of our collective intelligence. Like all great men, Arsene would learn from his mistakes. I haven’t seen an improvement in the team from the previous season, just a massive improvement from certain members of the team has been witnessed. There cannot be any meaningful development unless the team as a whole improves especially defensively.

    Manure are not a better team than us personnel wise, but they function better as a team.
    We are the Arsenal


  7. I think Hart is a bit of a red herring, Given is out for a while, B’ham seem to accept he is going back.

    Yogi – fabianski recently (ie last couple of games) I can accept he isnt playing in a first 11 as such which doesnt help.

    However these arent his first couple of games for the club, he has played a reasonable amount this season and I think I’m correct in saying we have won one game where he’s played and he has consistantly made costly mistakes. He might be a nice chap and a decent keeper in training but he doesnt seem to have a) the presence of a buffon (for eg) or the mentality to play for a top team.

    presence isnt something you can work on – you’ve got it or you havent. He hasnt (neither does Almunia btw)

  8. I’ve always thought that how one perceives a game is all about the last 30 minutes.

    The same goes for the season, how we look back on it, depends on the last 2 months.

    In 97/98, we had a shocking first half of the season, but we remember it fondly for the 10 wins in a row at the back end of the season, to claim the double.

  9. arsenehollis I couldn’t agree more!

  10. To be honest the lack of fight in the team has nothing to do with Fab….We have too much flair and not enough grit. We dont have a team that can roll the sleeves up and rally the troops. English football demands that teams have players owning the mental strength to not be fazed in times of adversity and being able to transfer that strength to others in the team. Experience doesn’t bring it, it is the natural leader that needs to shine and I don’t feel Arsenal have enough of these natural leaders. I hate them but Fergie’s teams have always had a core group of natural leaders and they are needed for success in this league. Until Wenger realizes this will will continue to be ‘just’ off the pace!

  11. Manure are not a better team than us personnel wise, but they function better as a team.

    Spot on.

    It always amazes me how Manu win game after game whilst playing shit. Yesterday a united fan said on the radio that they’ve played 3 good games all season.

    You cannot doubt their ability to fight in every single game, something we’ve lost in the last few weeks.

    My feeling is that the players have given up since that tie in Birmingham, and that shouldn’t happen.

    It is not the first time that this has happened, nor is it the second. To be honest it is worrying to see how easily one bad result can send this team into such a downward spiral.

  12. Very mature perspective for the team.

    Your points about goalkeeper support, from the back 4 and midfield are spot on. Then add the limited number of 1st team matches and you have a recipe that delivers disappointment.

    Goalkeepers need the playing time against quality competition to hone their skills and confidence.

    As far as our midfield, Nasri is not ready to fill in for Cesc. As talented as he is, he does not combine the maturity and wisdom to lead the attack.

    The role should be assigned to Rosicky. His play in the 2nd half of this season has been consistent and industrious. He has the experience that is missing and because of his age and that he’s captain of his national team – he has respect of his teammates, even RvP and Arshavin.

  13. Some fair points made about him but i don’t think Sol won player of the month through default alone. He has been immense in some games since returning and there were an awful lot of doubters. You could say he has been the best of a bad bunch but he deserves credit, what would things been like if we didn’t re-sign him! Well done Sol and Arsene for believing in him.

  14. YW

    You are top notch mate! I’ve never once read a post of yours where you move away from your opinions. Your attitude and reporting on Arsenal FC are a credit to the club and all us fans!

  15. Malaysiangunner

    Hi YW, balanced and insightful as usual.

    That said , I believe the clamour for a new goal keeper is real. Both our keepers while decent are still not good enough. The whole defence which will include the supposedly tracking back mid fielders has leaked in far too many goals this season. Injuries aside(this has been a constant thorn) we have not cope well. We either do not have the tactical nous to cope with injuries and play too single dimensionally whe our defence is decimated by injuries.
    All teams has injuries our second line is not good enough to cope and we lack the tactical flexibility to cope hence our poor end of season despite having supposedly easier run in that is suppose to win us the title. Now third place is in danger.

    I donot have the solution but we can not blame it on the referees, the injuries and the opposition tactics or even luck.

    This things will always be there, it is part of the game, you organize yourself to win it. There is no fight is some. If they do not want to wear the Arsenal shirt, get people who will fight for the club.

    I rather lose fighting and see how we suffer from complacency and lack of fight.
    You might say Shawcross was a jerk in the way he put himself about but in him we see desire and grit and 110% for every ball. I need to see the same desire and fight in our players.

    If not shipm them out.

    No Fear! We are the Arsenal

  16. Arsesession

    I have to agree, Rosicky looks far better through the middle, and usually takes control of the flow of our game.

    Nasri with his pace and trickery needs to be out on the wing for now.

  17. Malaysiangunner

    Id rather watch our players play skillfully and intelligently than watch one of them snap the bones of an opposition by charging into challenges at 110% like u say

  18. The stand-in for Cesc is Aaron Ramsey and there-in lies the problem for the latter half of the season. Take out Alex Song and Denilson too…and not surprisingly the midfield is no longer dominant. Samir, Abou and Tomas, in his current state, are better playing off other players.

  19. LimparAssist

    Malaysiangunner, you must be on some wind-up trying to push people’s buttons with that Shawcross remark. I don’t really care if you’re for real or not, you can fuck off.

  20. Limpar

    Malaysia is always trying it

  21. “The part that is missing is handling that disappointment and recovering which is taking too long. 2007/08 showed similar traits as the title slipped from their grasp, arguably that was a harsher lesson than this season. Could that be a fundamental reason for the disheartened state of some of the support this time around, a feeling that those experiences have not been entirely drawn upon?”

    Well upto a point, Yogi. However, when fans talk about being ’embarrassed’ by their team then it would seem that it’s about bragging rights for an awful lot of people.

    I hate losing, really hate it but suffering defeat, even painful ones is part and parcel of being a football fan. Until that is learnt then we will always have ridiculous reactions to failing to win. Every time.

    Mind you, the last few weeks have been awful. There are one or two players whose standing, in my eyes at least, is not what it was.

  22. That was a disgraceful comment Malaysian.

  23. Alex Ice Cream

    Blaming Fabianski completely ignores the deeper malaise that exists within the squad.

    Defensively this team is hopeless and once again AW has said that this is where we lost the Title – he has said the same thing for the last 2 years and yet seems unable to improve the defence.

    The lack of fight and mental strength of some of these players makes me question whether they will ever make it as top class players. Even AW admitted that the belief had gone.

    This raises 2 very important issues: why have the players just given up when the season is not yet over and they are still being overpaid by the club and why is the manager unable to instill confidence in his team?

  24. Shawcross as an example!!!!

    While we are at it let us “throw in” Rory Delap into the mix as well.

  25. I agree with malaysan gooner. This is english football its been hard for countless years. The game in this countery won’t change because arsen wants it to. The more we all moan about it the more it will happen. If you don’t like it go and watch and support la liga. Ps shawcross is just the kind of player we lack a young keowen

  26. Alex Ice Cream


    How dare you use Shawcross as a good example? Why not go for Dan Smith and Martin Taylor and advocate that Allardyce is a good man while you are at it.

    That is the stupidest comment I have ever read on here and I am including Howard’s racist posts as well.

    You f***ing piece of c***ing filthy sh1t.

  27. Consolsbob – i think this point you make is very interesting and key to the reaction of many fans, particularly those in the UK.

    ‘Well up to a point, Yogi. However, when fans talk about being ‘embarrassed’ by their team then it would seem that it’s about bragging rights for an awful lot of people’.

    I love the banter which goes on between my Sp*rs supporting ‘friends’ and have enjoyed many a year winding them up. I can take as good as i give as recent results have proved but i won’t allow a bad result or two to change the view I have of the great progress our club is making and has made over recent times. If a supporter is embarrassed to support Arsenal then they should be looking at themselves not the club.

  28. Oh dear they are all out today, i’m off.

  29. AIC,

    Don’t forget that the defence that showed up at Blackburn was missing 3 central defenders that probably would have started ahead of Silvestre and Campbell i.e. Gallas, Vermalen and Gallas, 2 left backs who would start in place of Traore (Clichy and Gibbs) and Almunia.

    I know Djourou and Gibbs were on the bench, but they were not ready.

    Plus from our midfield, we were missing spinal players Song and Denilson. Song if fit, would maybe have shored up the central defence as well.

    To talk of a general malaise is a bit over the top. We were down to the bare bones and you know it. The same weaknesses are shown by the chavs and mancs when they have multiple players out. Look at when the chavs got stuffed by City at home when Cech was out.

  30. Sorry that should be Gallas, Vermaelen and Djourou.

  31. Alex Ice Cream


    Is it just down to players being out though? We have failed to win big matches consistently over the last 2 years or so with more or less a full strength team. Its not just about personnel either the 4-3-3 leaves huge gaps between the wide players and the fullbacks which has been exposed.

    It wasn’t the defence’s fault that we didn’t create anything in the second half v Blackburn.

    Any defenders we put out should be good enough to keep a 2-1 lead at Wigan in injury time but they couldn’t. We are talking about a team that was almost relegated!

    Sh1tvestre is Hackney Marshes standard on a good day and it unacceptable that we are paying sh1t like him to play for Arsenal.

  32. The fact is that even with TV added to the back four we have shipped in more goals than last season.Is it down to the back four and keeper(s) or the failure of the midfield to provide a shield as PV/Petit and PV/Gilberto used to?

  33. AIC

    Sorry but you are as wrong as shi* once again.. When we have had our full squad available, or anything like our starting 11 we have been amazing.

    When the injuries hit, u cun* fans seem to come out to play

  34. Nice 1 One Man

    Lets take a direct comparison with the double winning and invincible teams of the past. Pretty fair comparison to do

  35. Alex Ice Cream


    When injuries hit, you mean from pre-season onwards.

    Is one of the reasons that we have so many injuries due to the fact that we have so many small, players and a lot of injury-prone ones?

    How long can we use injuries as an excuse. Its been the same for the last 5 years and seems to be getting worse.

    We have been decimated by injuries every season so mabe get rid of a few crocks and replace them. Maybe getting more quality players (no kids) would be a good insurance policy.

  36. AIC,

    I think it’s just peaks and troughs. At the moment it’s not good because the balance of the team is wrong and we are playing some of the weakest defenders, and an inpexperienced Fabianski.

    Campbell and Silvestre cannot play the ball out of defence. They do not attack the play like Gallas and Vermaelen which means we did not create pressure in the 2nd half. We did not have a holding player yesterday, and our creative options were limited in midfield. Nasri failed to conduct any kind of tempo in the same way that we would expect from Fabregas. VP has come back from a long injury. And Arshavin from a recent injury.

    Earlier in the season, with the balance right, we would be doing better. Even with a championship winning side, you cannot come to places like Blackburn and expect 3 points. Look at the mancs and chavs. They both got a point. We have to build up some confidence again with players returning from injury.

  37. There’s been a lot of talk after poor results against Wigan and Blackburn but we have had a hell of a lot of players out. Our season ended with the sloppy draw at Birmingham and home leg to barce when Cesc and Gallas got injured. We had 4th spot in the bag so I’m not surprised to see us struggle in the last few games after the dissapointing end to the season. I think we’ll beat Fulham and get 3rd although a draw tonight would do it too.

    3 Signings needed – striker, centre back and GK – get rid of Silvestre, send Fabianski out on loan and we’ll do fine next season.

  38. I agree with Moopay

  39. Alex Ice Cream


    The bare bones did not look like they were up for the fight which is disappointing. Players lacked drive and focus

    I didn’t expect 3 points on Monday – I said that we would be lucky to get a draw.

    Why is there not more cover at the back? TV got injured due to playing too many games, Djourou is injury-prone and Sh1tvestre simply sh1t. Billy gets a long-injury every season and yet when we got rid of Kolo we only bought TV.

    Its nightclub Arsenal – 1 in, 1 out. We needed another defender and if this meant that Djourou didn’t play then tough although this was not likely due to his injury record.

    Some of this is self-inflicted we have Bartley, Nordveit, Djourou all young and unproven and yet only Old Billy, even older Sol and TV who are proven. I won’t mention the other one and Phil is on his way out.

    Signings have been needed for at least 2 years now (I would say longer) yet we didn’t make enough in the summer.

  40. AIC,

    I don’t understand the comment that players lacked drive and focus. We had 70% possession, chances to go 2-0 up in the first half, and I thought we just lacked the nous without Fabregas to make inroads in the Blackburn defence in the 2nd half.

    With respect to injury prone players, what do you want to do ? Out of all the defenders, Djourou and Gallas have been suspect. Do we get rid of Gallas and Djourou ? Is that the answer ? As it stands, Gallas may be going and Djourou may not be first choice.

    Bartley – too young and inexperienced at this level – surely.

    Nordtveit – could be ready next season.

    To say that signings have been needed for 2 seasons is only true if you want a cast iron guarantee of parity with the chavs and mancs. But that costs money. And don’t say we’ve got money – you will sound like somebody on Le Grove.

  41. Alex Ice Cream

    Having 70% possession does not mean we had the necessary drive and fight. Too many players were inend of season mode.

    Billy will go I think and we did have money 130m was used for debt reduction.

    Now that we have reduced the debt we need to invest finally in proven quality even if it costs money!

  42. Most teams would do without big players, for a game or two. For the duration we’ve lost our big players it has eventually caught up with the team.

    Like in most teams sport, there is no like for like replacement. You loose Cesc, the team has to re-learn how to play without him. Loose Gallas (and his goals) the team has to re-learn to play without him. We have unfortunately lost too many for too long.
    That my friends cannot be legislated for. We’ve been unlucky.

  43. Apparently Tony Cascarino has called Wenger the “Whinger of the Year”. Well, it’s an improvement on the award given to Cascarino although the letters “w, “n”, “e” and “r” appear in that order in his.

    Which is quite an achievement when you consider some of the trolls that have been out in force recently.


  44. I wouldn’t listen (or read) anything Tony Cascarino has to offer. The false Irishman is just a 1st class idiot.

  45. The issue with missing defenders should have been addressed in January. Djourou was always out for the season and wenger even admits that he didn’t expect campbell to play so much. so what were we left with gallas and TV and silvestre. overall we did well to get so many games out of TV in his first year and we all know that gallas is older and injury prone.

    we should have got another defender in or kept senderos as he is a far better option than silvestre.

    bottom line is campbell has been fantastic but can’t be relied on as he can’t play two games in a week. you need 4 quality centre backs who can come in when needed and play week in week out.

    we left ouselves open to having to play silvestre and campbell and we all have seen the results.

    hopefully wenger will learn and have campbell as a number 5 not 4 next year.

  46. Tony Cascarino is just an ignoramus. At his prime he would never have played for Arsene. His opinions don’t count for much. Why anyone with a modicum of inteligence would read anything he writes is beyond me.

  47. cascarino is an idiot, equally wenger does himself or us no favors about blaming everyone and everything for our failures rather than himself and his players.

  48. The first team playing staff will have to be increased sufficiently, hence I doubt Arsene current assertions he would add one or two.
    My guess is, he will certainly keep campbell,
    Gallas will go so, I foresee another defender plus another defensive midfielder. Cesc will play more in his current position upfront, so will Diaby.

  49. Why do we have so many injuries? Gary Lewin said it might have something to do with the number of games. But I saw a stat recently showing John terry an some other chelsea players have played more games than any of our players have managed (no suprise as our players are so frequently injured).

  50. Alex Ice Cream


    I agree with you on both centrebacks and Arsene’s persistent moaning. CB should have been bought in the summer whether djourou was injured or not. Who is Djourou anyway, what has he achieved and yet we are waiting for him as if he was a young Nesta.

    After Shawcross’s assault AW’s outburst was more than justified but when we lose its always someone else’s fault.

    People says that he does this to protect his players but then says that they have great mental strength. If they can’t take the truth it doesn’t say much for their mental strength which has been exposed as an illusion in the last few weeks.

    Maybe AW can’t admit to himself that he got things badly wrong.

  51. Another good post Yogi:

    I have not met too many transfer rumors that involve big name players and spending lots of Arsene’s money that I don’t like. Unfortunately Like you I do not think Buffon or Hart are realistic. Fabianski may be a good GK someday, but we can not start another season with major GK? no matter how much potential he has. Lets hope the boss finds something.

  52. we need to get rid of injury prone players like diaby,eduardo, rosicky and gallas. Djourou is another one who has spent most of his career injured. we have been unlucky with the bad injuries this year, ramsey, rvp and gibbs in particular. the rest have been standard stuff which is due to our style of play and lack of rotation due to the weakness of the squad

  53. hey all

    YW let me once again thank you for your relative level-headedness and rational take on this tragic 5 weeks. I am far from calling for AW’s head, but this squad has come up short in areas i thought we had moved past struggling through.

    this is when we need need solidarity, more than ever. and not just for us. the team NEEDS us for the fulham game and the off season. send the players letters, send the manager letters, board members, sky, whoever. we need to let it be know that these are our gunners and we wont let them go through this tough period alone


  54. dan weakness of the squad? those weaknesses have played out only in the past couple of weeks after more or less a season long struggle with a side missing some key players. i think the point to take from this is that no team in the EPL or CL could expect to sufficiently cope and succeed with the injuries we have sustained. no team can afford to have the depth in quality that our injury list wouldve required this season

  55. Johann Djourou is a 22 year old Arsenal academy graduate, who’s been to the World Cup, gone and proven himself at a lower level, and who has all the attributes to be a top class defender.

    He has to figure in the manager’s plans.

  56. @Dan

    Is it lack of rotation due to the weakness of the squad, or due to bad luck with injuries?

  57. NJ wenger admiited that both gallas and TV played many games through pain and to quote him were “on the edge” why do you think that was? because he had no one else he trusted. why did gallas and cesc play against barca when they were so patently unfit? because there was no back up. he recently said how song played when he shouldn’t have but again no back up.

    NJ there is a lack of quality cover for the 1st team.

  58. I was reading in a dated issue of the CL magazine an interview with Casillas discussing his personal list of the best keepers of all time. one thing he said is that the best keepers are intimidating to the strikers and anyone else who would dare enter their penalty area. Reading the quote, it really hit home. I am not here to blame everything on Fabianski or Almunia. but i think we can all agree that at a certain point, we must cut our losses and say its time to move on. now im not even suggesting that that time has come, especially for Fabianski, but Casillas become #1 at 19, I really think Wenger needs to consider Tech 9 (Wojech Sczezny for the unitiated). regardless of other comparisons, he appears more intimidating than almunia or fab.

  59. You can only sanely call a squad weak and lacking in depth if it can’t cope with every player fit. Saying so when the squad is decimated and missing very key players, at the end of a hard season when all the players have had lengthy spells on the sidelines, makes no sense AT ALL.

  60. as i wrote below i think both.

    clearly for example vela and eduardo, especially the latter had terrible years and were completely not trusted by wenger. but at the beginning of the season wenger said i am not replacing ade because i have vela and eduardo. so you tell me, why didn’t either get any playing time, while rvp and bentdner were out other than they are not good enough?

    they then became over reliant on AA and then bendtner when he came back.

  61. a lack of quality in certain positions Dan? yes.. In a perfect world, Mikel Silvestre should NEVER start a game for a club like Arsenal (he’s our one player i really dont rate). so what, we should have 6 first team ready center halves on the depth chart at the start of a season?

    when i think of who slots into barca when xavi or iniesta is out, they cant hold a candle to nasri who has slotted in for Cesc. has he performed up to his lvl in that role? probably not, but to say that we lack quality to cover the first team is misdirected and misleading

    same thing with LB position.. we have 3 quality players with Traore needing the most work.. compare that to who Utd bring in when Evra is out. Barca with Alves out.

    Imagine barca playing a team like blackburn with Yaya, Keita, and Busquets missing, which is like the absence of song & denilson.

    injuries are not an excuse. they’re just the most logical explanation to our troubles

    Just because players havent played up to their ability 100% of the time doesnt mean there is a lack of quality

  62. NJGooner,

    ‘Presence’ is a red herring. Petr Cech, Pepe Reina & EVDS don’t intimidate anybody. They’re just good keepers period.

  63. ole, no team has everyone fit, it is enough already with blaming injuries year in year out. the club have to do something about it. even wenger freely admits the players that come in should be good enough. they may lose at utd or chelsea but these players should not be losing to teams like wigan and blackburn so meekly.

  64. a club needs 4 top center backs we have 2 and half (campbell being the half).

    in centre midfield outside of song we have no quality defensive player, which is so crucial if you are playing 4 3 3. denilson can’t play that role and has been awful there.

    if you are missing key players to your system ie song, then change the system to 4 4 2 to accommodate the players you have available.

  65. CoolSteve @ 12:03:

    Best comment of the day especially coming from an optimist. Hopefully optimistists and doomers alike can agree on that one. I wish I could say that much in such a short post.

  66. dan,

    Our squad was amply good enough to win the title this season.

    We have not. But then so wouldn’t one of Chelski & Man poo and 17 other teams in the league.

    We have suffered an unmatched level of injuries. Unmatched. And it’s not realistic to pretend that’s not a problem.

    I do agree though that we were dreadful against Blackburn & Wigan and actually had teams out in those two games, good enough to beat Blackburn or Wigan.

    Afterall our Carling Cup teams have beaten those teams recently.

  67. dan,

    Are you real?

    On what planet do we have 2 centre backs? What’s the matter with you?

  68. bill, if you take that comment at face value that they are not better than us and i think squad wise they have problems as well. then the question is why are we so weak in comparison to utd, why are utd still playing for the league (which they won’t win) why have they won another trophy this year. is it possible that their manager gets the BEST out of his squad of players and ours doesn’t?

    you can’t have it both ways. either the squad is better than ours or their manager is doing more with theirs?

  69. gallas and TV, silvestre is a walking disaster and djourou has been injured all year and campbell can’t play two games in a week. so there is your 2 1/2 centre backs.

  70. ok dan, we have just 1/2 a striker, 1 midfielder, and no goalkeeper. And no fans too.

    Let’s play the cloud-cuckoo reality game where we just have to pretend things are true and then base our judgements on our own inventions.

  71. Alex Ice Cream

    To say we have no squad depth is a joke – we would not have been in the Title race as long as we were with all the injuries that we have had.

    The problem is that the squad was not good enough to win the Prem even though we wrote off the 2 Cups.

    If we managed to keep everyone fit then maybe but this was never realistic. Its not necessarily number but quality or readiness for such a challenge. In 2008 when Eddy then Flamini and Sagna got injured it was season over. The squad was also running out of steam as too many players had played too many games.

    Whether we would have coped with the mental side, the pressure, even with a full squad available this year is also questionable.

  72. obviously not amply good enough to win the league when you are 11 points behind the current leaders. we are only that close to them as they have both gone backwards.

    it is easy at the end of the season to say what happened but let’s be serious at the beginning of the season the general consensus was our squad wasn’t big enough and that is how it played out. we did well to stick in there for as long as we did, but as i said there is no doubt that the main reason for that is the average form of both chelsea and utd as well.

  73. Alex Ice Cream


    “Let’s play the cloud-cuckoo reality game where we just have to pretend things are true and then base our judgements on our own inventions.”

    Some would argue that this is what AW has done for a while now.

  74. I think the only thing we lack that we need to win the league is luck and the ‘rub of the green’.

  75. the fact that wenger feels we have to write of two cups already shows that even he doesn’t see a squad big enough to compete for everything.

    ole, the point i was making about the defenders was that there was a lack of cover in that position as he had to play YV and Gallas eeven when they were injured until got to the point where they had full breakdowns that wrote off their seasons at the key time. do you think it is a coincidence that all our best and most used players are injured at the same time at the end of the year.

    if there were better replacements they could have been rested more earlier in the year. but they couldn’t as djourou was injured all year, silvestre is dreadful and campbell can’t play more than a game a week.

    make sense?

  76. And they’d be complete idiots who’d argue that.

  77. The problem is that our injuries caused us to have three strikers out for a considerable time…having to play AA up front on his own against the other top sides, several key midfild players out for a considerable time inclusing Cesc and his backup, Aaron Ransey in the playmaking depaprtment and Alex Song and Denilson in the defensive midfield department, several key defenders in crucila matches including William gallas and TV. Many of the above overlapped. In other words key players and their backups were injured.

    Far more injuries than any other team before people start claiming that others had injuries too. Empirical numbers are important.

    Ultimately that just drains the lifeblood out of a team.

    Of course AW will bring in new players and some will leave. Happens every close season. This one is no different.

    Next season we can do it…injuries allowing.

  78. Sorry about the typos, I trod on my monocle.

  79. we have seen a net loss of players ever year in the past few years hopefully more will come than leave this time.

  80. dan,

    We started the season with 6 centre halves & 1 player who can play in the position.

    The corresponding figure for Chelski is 3 centre halves and 1 player who can play there.

    Man yoo have 3 centre halves & 2 players who can fill in there.

    If either had injury situations as extreme as ours they won’t be able to line up a team without dipping into their reserves.

    How you can spin this into ‘a lack of cover’ shows how far from having any grip on reality you are.

  81. Alex Ice Cream


    After Ade went we had the following striker options: Eddy still recovering from a horrific injury and more surgery, RvP who has not ever played a full season injury-free and Nik who is still raw.

    It was obvious that Ade needed replacing but AW gambled on the fitness of RvP and lost. That’s why we had a striker crisis.

  82. who were the 6 centre backs? djourou was injured for the 100th time and we knew the season was a write off, he didn’t trust senderos anywhere near the team so you can forget him. silvestre, as we all know is appalling and that leaves TV and Gallas as the only decent centre backs that started the season, campbell joined half way through the season.

    are you denying that wenger admitted that both Gallas and TV played when they weren’t fit? are you denying gallas was thrown in against barca out of pure desperation not to play silvestre with the result being his season was written off?

    what are you watching?

  83. Alex Ice Cream


    6 CBs? Really? TV and Billy, with Djourou (usually injured) and Sh1tvestre who does not count. Phil was as good as gone.

    Who is the “other?”

  84. Well AIC, what he couldn’t have imagined is that going into a run of 5 successive key games, he’d have none of them fit. Even one of them being fit would have made a big difference.

  85. To all those who said that Wenger has not planned for injuries properly consider this:

    Almunia, Fabianski, Mannone, Szczesny

    Vermaelen, Gallas, Djourou, Senderos/Campbell, Silvestre

    Clichy, Gibbs, Traore
    Sagna, Eboue, Eastmond

    Song, Denilson, Eastmond

    Diaby, Ramsey, Merida

    Fabregas, Nasri, Wilshere

    Arshavin, Rosicky, Vela

    Eduardo, Walcott

    Van Persie, Bendtner

    That’s 3 players for nearly each position, and I haven’t even taken into account the fact that half the players on the attacking side can play 3 different positions themselves. Even if you read the second name from each category (4th and 5th for centre backs), it still makes great reading as a team, perhaps Silvestre aside. However, even our immediate replacement players have been screwed over by “English-type” football (Ramsey, Eduardo, Rosicky, Gibbs), leaving us with players out of position, and those meant to play 5 games a season suddenly expected to play 15.

    On the other hand, Barcelona, whom many Wenger-haters love citing as an example for us to follow, have 23 players in the whole squad. If they lose six players to injury (which is a given for us more than half the season), they can’t even name a full squad.

    Wenger is clearly not the one at fault.

  86. and to use song there when again wenger said he isn’t a centre back also weakens the CM as there is no decent cover for there either. so i don’t see that as a great option.

    as for ade wenger said he didn’t replace ade because of vela, who played his 1st league game of the season in the 37th game of the year, we can see how well that turned out.

  87. AIC,

    You keep trying to argue fact away.

    1. Gallas
    2. TV
    3. Senderos
    4. Silvestre
    5. Djourou
    Plus Song who can play in the position.

    If I played the same game, I can argue that Drogba is not actually a Chelsea player or Essien.

    Essien has been ignored often so he’s not a Chelsea player. I could say the same about Torres. He apparently doesn’t play for Liverpool.

  88. Alex Ice Cream


    I have to agree with you again. Aw even admitted that he pushed TV and Billy too hard with disasterous consequences. Its a disgrace that AW forces players to play injured as he is too stubborn, stingy, or whatever to spend a few million on a decent back up and not that piece of sh1t sh1tvestre.

    Is it a coincidence that Thierry Henry has been plagued by injures in the last 2 years or so when he had to play injured for us on many occasions as we had no decent back up?

    Even in his last game v PSV he was wheeled on and anyone could see that he wasn’t fit. He was then out for the season as a result and never played for us again.

  89. ole, no idea what you are on about with essien.

    your list proves our point about what was realistically available to us.

    one could argue that we were actually very lucky that both TV and Gallas played every league game till around mid feb without being injured.

  90. Alex Ice Cream


    That’s 5, not 6!

    Why include Sh1tvstre? Big Phil was clearly on his way out, Billy gets a serious injury every season and Djourou hasn’t played at all.

    Anyone coud see tht we were short here. Give AW credit for bringing back Sol – it would have been much worse if not for the Big Man.

    Torres does more in one game than Vela or Theo have done in their careers.

    Even injured Essien is better than Sh1tvestre as a CB.

  91. dan,

    Your arguments have no merit whatsoever. Frankly it’s stupid to claim we had no cover in the centre back position.

    That’s what I’m on about.

  92. Alex Ice Cream


    3 players per position? How many are of the requisite quality howver?

    How many do not have a history of being crocked the whole time?

  93. AIC,

    The players to include are not at your whim but based on the club’s actual squad list.

    I have no taste for Silvestre, but he’s a centre back and plays for Arsenal, and is better than having nobody who could fill the position in an extreme situation where we have 4 centre backs out.

    By the way, we actually do still have 6 since Senderos is out on loan. But I’ll concede 5. STILL 2 MORE THAN CHELSKI HAVE!

  94. ole, we will obviously have to disagree, but i think your list proves it all, there was no quality cover for TV and Gallas and wengers admission of playing them when injured or almost injured again proves my point. there is no coincidence that they are both out at the key part of the season.

  95. Alex Ice Cream


    That’s rubbish Phil was never going to play for us again in the Prem or CL – AW has been trying to get rid of him since his meltdown at Anfield that cost us a CL semibut noone wanted him. Djourou was out leaving us with TV, Billy (1 big injury a season) and Sh1t as the only back up until Sol came.

  96. Alex Ice Cream


    Its never better to have Sh1t. Better to play 3 defenders and an extra midfielder or striker!

  97. ole, not sure how you are still not grasping djourou out for the season and senderos never being trusted and thus left with silvestre who even you agree is a disaster, so where is the quality cover for TV and Gallas?

    what am i missing?

  98. Dan:

    The point you made at 2:44 is difficult to argue against. I have said the same thing myself. I wish I knew why that happens. Like you I think that some of the blame has to fall on AW. However, he has done an incredible job of building this squad on a shoestring budget. I doubt any other manager in the world could have paid down the stadium debt. Controlled himself enough to not spend huge amounts of money yet still keep us in the CL every year. That is an amazing achievement and deserves incredible respect.

    However, I agree completely that this squad that we have built has not played up to its potential and AW has to take some the blame. There have been tactical and squad management mistakes made. The mental fragility is a huge concern. Idealism seems to trump pragmatism at times. I hope we will learn from our mistakes. We have to stay the course. We do not have any other reasonable options. The boss has proven he can win trophies and lets hope that he and this team finds the “nous” that has been missing.

  99. Alex Ice Cream

    Ok more than Chelsea but Alex, Ivanovich, T**** don’t seem to get as injured. Carvalho has been injured though.

  100. Ole, You can say we had the numbers but were they of sufficient quality to sustain a title challenge?

    Silvestre, is not enoough, as you’ve said yourself many times on this blog. Djourou i remember sometimes couldn’t get in the first team last season. Wenger preferring on a few ocassions to playing silvestre (!) instead. Besides he was injured in preseason, so there was ample time for replacing him. I guess that’s why Sol was signed in January, but he couldn’t play more than a game per week we’re told (hmm.. does that mean he should be condered a half replacement?).

  101. Henristic,

    Of course. Gallas, Vermaelen, Campbell, Djourou is a pretty good line up of centre backs. Is there ANY doubt about that?

  102. Alex Ice Cream


    Staying more or less competitive with a budget and the stadium is indeed a great achievement but we were told that team building would be unaffected. We have been told every season that the sqaud is good enough to win the league.

    The argument is that we couldn’t tell people that we were not going to spend any money and may have to sell players which does have merit.

    Instead the club chose to lie to supporters and foster fake, unrealistic hopes.

  103. bill, from your mouth to gods ears. i have my concerns when this week only wenger has said the goakeeper wasn’t a position he wanted to change and that he will prove everyone wrong about fabianksi, and that he doesn’t need anymore midfielders and only one defender if gallas goes only.

    that to me is worrying and not facing the realities of the past 12 months.

    but we can live in hope.

  104. Putting on one side your usual Wenger bashing AIC, how do you justify this comment?

    “Whether we would have coped with the mental side, the pressure, even with a full squad available this year is also questionable.”

  105. AIC refuses to comment on posts made regarding injuries, analysis etc. yet continues in posts not just today to call AFC players crocked.


  106. > continues in his comments, not just today

  107. ole, it isn’t a good line when you consider campbell can’t play two games a week, gallas is old and injury prone and djourou hasn’t played in a year and is potential only at this point. equally campbell aside none of them are the strong commanding centre back we need to aggressively take charge in the box.

  108. AIC & dan,

    Sorry for wasting time with you both. You’re talking complete rubbish.

    By your measure, Chelski have no centre back, because I decided we can’t count Carvalho because he’s ugly, Terry because he’s a c-u–t and Alex because he’s Brazilian.

    What utter rubbish.

  109. Currently, we have 3 centre backs out injured plus 1 who can play there.

    If Chelski had the same problem, they’d have nobody to field.

    Somehow some people can’t see the most obvious thing in the world.

    Because you’re so invested in your ridiculous ideas about the actual strength of the squad.

  110. Alex Ice Cream


    Its simple. I doubt the mental strength of the team even at full-strength. I am 50-50 in my belief of whether the team even at full strength would not have found ways to lose when the pressure was really on or have gone on to win. We make so many basic errors, especially defensively and even in lower pressure games.

    I am unsure whether this team has the winning mentality. After all what have they won? RvP, Cesc, TV, Campbell, maybe Song and Clichy I have no doubts about. The rest are questionable mentally and at worse are weak mentally.

    Until they win something there will always be a doubt.

  111. Alex Ice Cream


    What are you on about?

  112. ole, what are you talking about terry, alex, carvalho and ivanovic are all experienced international players who have all won boat loads of trophies.

    the proof is in the results, chelsea are about to do the double and we are ending the year with naff all again.

    i truly don’t understand what you are talking about.

  113. it isn’t about the numbers of players it is the quality of those players that is the issue. we have the numerical amount of players, but the back up is not good enough to compete at the highest level, or even the level of wigan and balckburn to be precise.

  114. Alex Ice Cream


    RvP – yet to complete 1 season in 5 years.
    Crocksicky – 4 years mainly on the treatment table.
    Theo – how many injuries?
    Gallas, misses a large part of every season.
    Denilson -missed a lot of the season.
    Arshavin – niggles all through the season.

    The ones I feel sorry for are Diaby and Eddy who injuries are as a result of being assaulted. This has still meant that they have been unavailable many times.

  115. “How many do not have a history of being crocked the whole time?”

    To begin, let’s start with two:

    Cesc Fabregas
    Aaron Ramsey

  116. Alex Ice Cream

    I forgot Djourou as well.

  117. Oh,
    you’ve already made a nice edited list for yourself.




  118. Alex Ice Cream

    2 out of isn’t bad!

  119. Why are you calling TR7 Crocksicky?


  120. Alex Ice Cream

    What’s your point Finsbury?

  121. Why are you calling TR7 Crocksicky?

  122. cesc also missed three months last year by the way.
    and was missing games for persistent hamstring problems this year before the barca game.

  123. Well, evrything is ‘doubtful’ until it happens, AIC.

    It just seems that you want to attack this team and this manager.

    I seem to recall that you saida few weeks ago, in response to being challenged on your support for the team, that you had put your doubts aside and thought that this team could have won the title.

    Now you are saying that they probably never would. What do you want to happen?

  124. Alex Ice Cream


    We have paid his wages for 4 years for virtually nothing yet he is given a new contract. His medical bills alone would be too much.

    I hope that he is only getting a new contract so that we can offload him for a decent price. Failing that give him 1 more season and then sell him for anything you can get.

    When Fernando Redondo was injured for a year at Lazio, he paid his wages back to the club.

    I suggest Rosicky does the same.

  125. LimparAssist

    Fucking hell, AIC. You do talk some complete bollocks.

    This time last month we were bang in the running for the title. We fell away due to a massive and unusual injury pile-up. It’s plain for all to see.

    For evidence of our winning mentality look at all the little ‘Ws’ we chalked up in the win column. Wins that got us into that very strong position for the, sadly injury ravaged final push. Or you could watch some of the games if you like, you might enjoy them – we played some of the best football on the planet this year.

  126. What Idiot would compare AFC to SS Lazio?

  127. Wasn’t Rvp also “assaulted”, his injury this season has nothing to do with his previous injury record.

  128. Personally I ignore people who make up silly names for our players. They just remind me of school children.

  129. Alex Ice Cream


    I did think that this team with its run-in could have won it. Alas this was just an illusionand now I have doubts. No matter who we put out we should have had enought to beat Wigan with a lead in injury time but no.

    Until they actually win something there will always be doubts.

    I had belief that we wouldn’t win the CL though. This team has too many defensive weaknesses not to be undone by one of the big teams in Europe.

  130. YW made an interesting post the other week about injuries.

    It’s been mentioned a few times in the threads.

  131. Alex Ice Cream

    I was comparing Redondo to Rosicky, not AFC to Nazio.

  132. Alex Ice Cream


    Fair comment on RvP.

  133. Alex Ice Cream


    How do you know that we would not have bottled the Title race even with a full team?

    Nobody does.

    I am 50-50 on whether we would have or not.

  134. Dan and AIC:

    I understand your concerns. No one can realistically deny that we have made mistakes. I also share your concern since recent history does not really give us alot of confidence that we will fix those mistakes. However, for the first time we are actually saying that we are in better financial position. I have been obsessed with our absent defense all year and still am angry that no more effort was made to fix that. I am willing to give the boss a “do over” on his promise to fix that. I believe that much of the financial stubborness attributed to Wenger was forced on him by our situation.

    We have a much better chance to win sooner by intelligent additions to the squad and some tactical changes vs. radical change. For now we have to stay the course.

  135. The people who keep writing off the team are generally people with no grasp of reality. The kind of bollocks I’ve heard in this exchange, makes Myles Palmer & Stan Collymore look like Confucius and Socrates.

    What complete zero.

  136. Kudos to Yogi for coming up with new perspectives everyday in his posts.

    Wish one could say the same about the comments as well.

  137. Alex Ice Cream


    Don’t quote from people that you are not capable of understanding.

  138. Alex Ice Cream


    I agree. I don’t want massive changes – 4 quality players through the spine.

    We have suffered due to financial constraints; now its time to invest in the sqaud.

    I will be happy if we got those players.

  139. Keysersoze on May 5, 2010
    at 4:00 pm


    Beam me up Scotty.

  140. I don’t think it is a major coincidence that we have struggled in nearly all the big games in the past few years, big cup games and big league games. part of that is maturity and lack of experience of really winning. when you listen to pundits like winterburn who i personally think talks a lot of sense and we all love him anyway, he always goes on about the importance of winning the first trophy and the belief that brings. the current wenger policy of ignoring the domestic cups is seriously floored as going from nothing to the CL or PL is a major ask for any team.

    you need a winning mentality and they don’t have it, would we really have been able to pull out these big results now if we were still in it? who knows but the past couple of years have seen a consistent lack of believe when it mattered at the business end of the season

  141. Bill,

    You, dan & AIC live in cloud cuckoo if you’re unable to see that 6 centre backs is adequate cover and only a very extreme injury situation leaves us with only 2 of them fit.

  142. it is true that our injury record is not is also true that we are targets for the rough tactics and it doesnt help

    but what is also true is that we have a team of softies who allow themselves to be targetted…

    wenger is an innovator and has tried to change the image of football in the PL by introducing a quick free flowing style with no physical edge but it isnt working..

    the PL is the toughest league in europe so trying a one man crusade to change it just leaves yourself open to the vultures..which is just whats happening..

    wenger had it bang on with his teams of the past..quick free flowing football combined with nutcases…if teams tried to play us we outplayed them if they tried to kick us we out kicked was simple

    too much flair and not enough fight..and the physio table and league table reflect that

  143. after observing dan and AIC’s posts, one thing can be said of their opinons, because regardless of the high standard we carry around for opinons (they must be backed with factual evidence to be taken seriously), they are of the belief that their solution to the lack of squad depth (ie signing new players) wouldve have solved the situation. Not might have solved the situation, or couldve helped the situation, NO, these 2 believe without a doubt that had their thoughts and concerns been acted on, we would be hoisiting some significant silverware. I’m sorry Dan and AIC, but logically, your argument has no basis. so when you use logic to support the points around your central argument (which is that more signings = trophies) it becomes very confusing and your opinion becomes all the more invalid, at least to the perceptive eye.

    that is all

  144. AIC,

    I’m incapable of understanding how you can spout so much shite.

    Complete worthless rubbish.

  145. Alex Ice Cream


    You could learn something from Collymore, as dumb as he is.

  146. NJ,

    there is not a single arsenal fan in the world that doesn’t believe we need some new players to take us to that next level, so your paragraph makes no senses what so ever. are you saying we don’t need new players.

    obviously new players doesn’t guarantee success but they make the chance of success that much more likely.

  147. To want to continually ‘blame’ demonstrates a degree of immaturity….and that is your problem, AIC.

  148. and to the people arguing that RvP has never played an injury free season.. i dont know if you’ve ever looked at a full schedule from beginning to the end of the year, (you should try it! i think our clubs website is its under a tab called fixtures and reports) but they play bascially week in week out for 10 months of the year, sometimes, 2 games a week. NO player who is the first choice of a side that competes not only domestically but on the grand stages of the CL can expect to go an entire season injury free.

    so, take it simple, look at the schedule. think to yourself, if i was a professional athlete competing in the toughest footballing competitions in the world, could i play week in, week out, for 10 months without picking up a sore msucle? a tweaked ligament? let alone a serious pull or tear? i bet you cant even kick it around with your mates without being sore the next day. THINK BEFORE YOU SPEAK

  149. LimparAssist

    Well, seeing as we put 13 past Wigan, Blackburn and Spurs in the reverse fixtures when we had an almost fully fit squad – no I don’t think we would have ‘bottled’ it.

    You are a curious sort indeed, AIC.

  150. Collymore? You use Collymore? Fucking hell….worse than I thought.

  151. Alex Ice Cream


    No, new players do not guarantee anything, nothing does.

    They just give you a better chance if they are of the right quality. They cam improve the team and give more options when injuries strike.

  152. You really have to be a piece of shit to use Collymore.

  153. Alex Ice Cream


    That was not at the end of the season when the pressure is greater.

  154. we can all argue until we are blue is the face but the bottom line are the facts are the facts, we have come up short yet again and made minimal progress since last year.

  155. You have an underdevelped intellect, AIC. You seem to be emotionally retarded.

  156. never said this before but completely agree with frank, collymore is the lowest form of life!!!

  157. Alex Ice Cream


    Your problem is that you are incapable of seeing the obvious, which make you a bit silly.

    You are also a bully and a tyrant which makes you a cnut

  158. Alex Ice Cream

    You are retarded Frank, no seeming about it.

  159. As usual, I have to give up on you AIC. You have doubts that this team has the mental strength but no doubts that new players presumably would have and that alone would win the Title.

    Is it true that you wanted a boycott of the team this weekend, JonJon?

  160. limpar your comment is absurd all those three games were at home!!!!

  161. Alex Ice Cream

    Who uses Collymore other than Ole?

  162. oh dan believe me. I want new players. I never want to see Tweety bird in the starting 11 of our beloved arsenal ever again. But im talking about the future. things that have YET to happen. you are speaking of things that have already happened as if you know that your proposed and refined course of action would guarantee the result we all so desperately longed for.

    also, i disagree that my paragraph makes no sense. here is the equation for the season

    continued development of younger players + vets coming into leadership roles + Thomas Vermaelen (best signing of the season btw) = trophies. that was the equation as AW had it for the season.

    you are saying that had he modified the equation with a number of other signings that we would hositing a trophy. AW was wrong, mostly down to injuries. How are you so sure your equation is right? if you have figured out how to predict undeterministic functions within a constantly evolving equation i suggest you contact the math dept at the closest university and apply for a grant

  163. Your points have been comprehensively dismantled AIC.

    Anything else?

  164. He used him as an example of crap.

  165. “I think we have been in the race this year with the team we had. We will be stronger next year just with the internal improvement and with the experience these players will have now. The additions will be minimal but if there are some they have to be really top class.”

    directly from

    not overly encouraged by these words!!!

  166. Arsenal, It hurts

    I am a Arsenal fan from India. Well, every Arsenal loss hurts the same where ever you are.But it hurts even more that when I cannot show my protest and displeasure in anyway to the players and board. I only ask this from all fellow gunners in London, show them some kind of protest and displeasure.

  167. Ole:

    There is a legitimate argument that prospectively we did not need more CB. We have argued that ad nauseum and neither of us have changed our minds. However, in retrospect there can be no argument that we should have strengthened last year.

    All that I ask at this point is that we learn from our mistakes and proactively add 2 CB this summer so we do not have to have this argument again next year. We can afford it now so why even take the chance of coming up short again?

  168. Even the fucking opposition get it….

    Alex ferguson ‘Arsenal will not be able to compete with the injuries they have had’, John Terry ‘I am amazed that Arsenal are still in it at the end of the season with their injuries’, Joe Royle ‘Arsenal do not make a big issue of it but their injuries this season have been horrendous’.

  169. Alex Ice Cream


    Keep deluding yourself and keep reading Collymore.

    Until changes are made that result in us winning trophies, I am afraid that my points will stand.

  170. Alex Ice Cream


    Now you are quoting Terry!?

  171. NJ,

    that process works if the so called “young players” e.g diaby and denilson are good enough to take us to that next level.

    it works if you can the best out of eduardo and rosicky.

    it works if young players like vela and walcott step up to the next level.

    unfortunately this season, none of the above has happened and that is a good chunk of the squad.

    obviously how long does wait? some are more patient than others.

  172. Bill,

    You’re living in cloud cuckoo. Take Terry, Carvalho and Alex out of Chelsea, along with Ivanovic who can play centre back. Who will line up for them?

    Answer that question straightly.

  173. Yes but what are these changes AIC?

  174. You don’t need to quote anybody, you just have to use your damn brain.

    It takes more credulity to believe Arsenal haven’t suffered from an extreme injury situation than to believe virtually anything else.

    I can’t think of anything clearer to see.

  175. Consols

    Yes..Why bother to turn up..The players dont bother so why should the fans?

    Its not a protest. Its not a march against AW..No banners,no chants no songs,no insults.

    Silence and empty seats tells the club all they need to know..

  176. Arsenal, it hurts, well its a good thing you’re in india isnt it, one less cunt among us then. Stay there. Never come here. neverrrr

  177. LimparAssist

    Oh, you’re absolutely right, dan. So they were. How absurd of me to take into account home games.

    Oh no wait, my point was about personnel involved, not where the game was played. But to take your point; we dismantled Celtic at Parkhead, Everton at Goodison, we beat Liverpool at Anfield – all before the injuries started doubling up. We were flying then, remember? It was glorious.

    How could you have so little respect and belief in your own team as to say that the group of players that played so brilliantly together when fully fit then, would have ‘bottled it’ in the run-in? To write them off just like that! The cynicism involved in doing that, is completely beyond me. You’d have to be a real twat to do that.

  178. Arsenal, It hurts

    Zap. I guess it hurts even more here. There is no way that I could watch the Fulham game live here. The Blackburn game is the last game that i’ll remember for 3 months now. Imagine that.

  179. NJ,

    the TV signing shows how buying experienced players not at outrageously expensive prices can take you that much closer to success. as did the AA buy last year. (although he has been the biggest disappointment of the season!!!)

  180. You take yourself too seriously JonJon. You and your 3 friends won’t come. Who cares?

  181. LimparAssist

    ‘Arsenal, It hurts’, you rummy sod. I think you might best serve the protest by continuing to not go to games.

    And you can put a sock in it while you’re at it – you’re silence and empty seat will tell the club all they need to know.

    Tell you what, why not start boycotting all things Arsenal… as of right now.

    Right behind you, brother.

  182. limpar,

    i am not writing them off, all i was saying our home record is fantastic and away record is crap the complete reverse with the three teams involved. therefore to compare results against them and say how well we did in the past is ridiculous. even with our best team we wouldn’t have outscored them 13 to whatever.

  183. LimparAssist

    Maybe not, dan. But we would have beaten them.

  184. Ole:

    We have had this discussion so many times before. Your point is well taken. Chelsea would have no one if they lost those players. I have given up arguing wthat we should have prospectively added a CB last summer. That is over and done. Even you can not argue that in retrospect the way the season has worked out we would have been better served if we had actually added another CB.

    Next year we need to add a first choice to play with TV and add a 3rd or 4th choice to go along with JD as cover. Sol can be a 5th choice. That gives us a reasonable number of CB and hopefully gives us quality backups that we lacked this year.

  185. wigan probably, spurs and blackburn who knows. we don’t win at spurs very often and a draw is always a decent result there and blackburn have a great home record and didn’t lose to any of the big teams this year.

  186. bill spot on for what we need at the back.

  187. LimparAssist

    Oh… that’s embarrassing. Hello J*mes.

  188. Signing three CBs would be crazy. Remember, these guys would need to get to know each other’s games, bed in at the club and learn to communicate with each other etc. One injury and we’d be all over the place from the start.

  189. LimparAssist

    I can’t wait for the game on Sunday. JonJon, there are thousands of Arsenal fans who would climb over each other to get that ticket. Some of them are probably on this blog. Why don’t you give it to a kid who’s never been?

    I think we’re in for a fantastic feast of football at TNHoF. Going out with a bang.

  190. I hope the fixture list for next year throws up our away trip to Brum fairly early next season. Can we get Hleb back please? He’s exactly the sort of player we’ve missed these last few games. Keeps the tempo high in the middle of the park and slips passes through the eye of a needle. Aside from that stick Tech9 in goal and we’re ready to go.

  191. I’ve been absent from the ACLF world for a while because of the stream of nonsense from whiners, who sound as if they know nothing of our club, its strategy, its history – especially recent.

    As a matter of fact, where I am, when you are Arsenal you are Arsenal, and you live and die with your team, good and bad or quite simpy you are not Arsenal, and never were, not really, no matter what you think.

    Over the past few weeks I have seen many, many people wearing their Arsenal shirts out and about, just to say “GFY” or words to that effect.

    Jon Jon I feel ashamed for you. Look around you. Do you know any real ManU diehards, bitterly angry and upset at the selling out of their club and debt that needs servicing; Chelsea and ManC who have become the playthings of billionaires; Liverpool fans who have seen their team collapse and no real respite in sight. I could go on, but I need to ask – do you know how lucky we are?

  192. Arsenal, It hurts

    Limpar, i just can’t let go all things Arsenal. I love it too much. Like every girlfriend, we know the devil inside but we still want it. I just want his protest to be something like a uncomfortable silence between the couple.

  193. Sometimes I think I am the only person who thinks the Arsenal is steady, apart from a few squalls we are on strong foundations. Thankfully we have a manager who cares foremost about the club, not his own ego. But I know I am not.

  194. yes Zimpaul

    ‘we’ must be really lucky spending all our hard earned cash from a million miles away in a country where arsenal only exsit on the internet on a team thats not fit enough to wear the shirt and a board full of liars…

    but you probably know more than me..

  195. zimPaul, “not his own ego” please!!!!!!!!

    he does love the club agreed but he has one hell of an ego.

  196. Bill,

    I am not sure that one additional centre back would have added anything.

    As you say, looking back on hindsight, given how extreme our injury situation, the additional centre back might have been injured too.

    I don’t accept this premise of more is better since we have enough numbers already and it’s guaranteed us nothing, and we can’t have a squad of only centre halves.

  197. even Arsenal It Hurts understands…

    Arsenal FC treat the fans like crap…same lies every year, same spiel just to sell tickets at top rates, canceling the AGM..

    topped of with half a team on a massive wage bill (that the fans pay) not fit to wear the shirt and throwing two trophies every year…

    really lucky

  198. ole,

    one more centre back would have meant no silvestre, need one say more?

    not a numbers issue a good centre back instead of silvestre and everyone’s a winner!!!!

  199. Jon Jon, there is no doubt whatsoever that I care more than you, that’s my point. I make no special claims about knowledge … you’re a disgrace and your snide and cynical comments say more than you realise.

    Think on it.

  200. LimparAssist

    Don’t renew then, JonJon. Give someone else a chance.

  201. Jonjon @5.01pm

    That has to be the most patronising pile of bilge I’ve read today and believe me, there was some strong competition.


  202. Oh fuck off dan.

    I’ve never hidden my distaste for Silvestre. But even without Silvestre we had 4 centre backs and 1 who could play that. Which is more than adequate cover.

    As much cover as any team anywhere in the world.

  203. I Think our team can do it against the big teams… they hv done it b4 in previous seasons. Beating Mu Liverpool n AC Milan r no jokes. But last season we were undone by very very small teams… Now were brushing aside small teams fairly well. Now mixing lessons frm last season n this will make next one to my senses the best one. But something surely needs 2 change 1st, losing now when we r under no pressure is simply unacceptable! I think some players need the boot n it surely starts with almunia ( I think he gv his all but its simply not star quality ) then pls oh pls wenger i dont wanna see silvestre in an arsenal shirt anymore. Hes the mu reject that could only manage to warm thier bench!!!

    Even at the start of the season , the vermaelen gallas partnership was phenomenal, but i was sad coz no partnership lasts 4eva. But wenger seemed 2 play them till they unavoidably got injured – It was bound 2 happen. Back ups need 2 be brought in now someone big n strong to partner gallas or vermaelen. Midfield replacement 4 song is needed.

  204. ole,

    one of us is really dumb, not sure who.

    Djourou was injured all year and we knew that before the season and senderos was never going to be played so where the F–k do you get 4 centre backs from?

  205. YW

    i spend most of my time here being patronised…dont dish it if cant take it…

    but its only natural you defend your regulars so i have no quarel.

  206. Dan, you’re wrong you know. How enticing it would have been for our Mr. Wenger to do a ‘Mourinho’ and keep repeating the Invincibles; it’s not as if he doesn’t know how that’s achieved after all. He had bigger things on his mind, and the its easy to understand his strategy because the results, cumulative, are in the public eye – staring us in the face actually – but we choose not to see them, which is a travesty.

    He, I am certain, convinced the Board to break the cycle of incurring debt to buy players to produce results in order to repay debt. An almost insane strategy. He must have known the risks to his personal standing might be compromised.

  207. AIC have you read the texts and mails being sent to club section ticket holders? its the same old BS we are going to sign 3 or 4 good players, then once all tickets are renewed its reduced to one new player. This is the only one of 20 or more AFC blogs that doesnt think we have a goalkeeping problem.

  208. Ashton,

    I think that’s another obvious point that catastrophists choose to ignore.

    We’ve beaten Man poo & chavs with weaker teams than we have now.

    I don’t bother with that one at all. The only thing that matters is how many points we get. We have not gotten enough, and quite sadly, we’ve had 9 defeats this season which is just not good enough at all.

  209. zim paul, we will obviously never know the real amount he has had to spend. we will see what happens this summer. he did have some money as he is uped almost the entire squads contracts so he has been spending money, just not on new players

  210. dan,

    The dumb one is you. Clearly so. Djourou was injured three days to the start of the season & in any case remains an Arsenal player.

    An injured Arsenal player is still an Arsenal player. Again, there were 3 other players to cover him, as many as ANY TOPFLIGHT CLUB ANWHERE IN THE WORLD

  211. This is England

    Zim you sound like a very loyal fan,i may have a spare ticket for Fulham if you are interested.

  212. for a club thats had no money weve certainly spent alot of it on youth players

    nasri 12
    theo 12
    rambo 5

    when we have the best academy already in place…and we need experienced winners it seems abit pointless to me

    and for a club with no money weve extended alot of contracts..17 if im correct..amounting to a wage bill of 120mil

    yeah we are really skint arent we..

  213. Sorry Dan, there’s a great big stadium staring you in the face. I think we have some idea of where certain resources have been placed, and why.

  214. ole, the transfer window closed august 30th and he knew at that time djourou was out all season and that he wasn’t going to play senderos. result silvestre has to play when gallas and TV are injured.

    if you can’t see that sequence of events you are totally blind because that is exactly what happened.

    i can’t believe you are even arguing it, it happened!!!!!!!!

    that was the story of what happened this season. he had only two quality centre backs he trusted, he played them until they were too injured to play and we ended up with silvestre playing at the key time in the season including against barca in the champions league.

  215. Such idiocy…

    We’ve extended 17 contracts totalling 120M.

  216. clearly the stadium is the big reason, i was talking about the past year and a half. he has invested al ot of money in renewing contracts for about 17 players rather than brought in new players. i am not arguing if that is right or wrong just stating a fact.

  217. There is no doubt the injuries have hampered our ability to win a trophy this season. It’s silly to question that.

    I do still think that our back up (in central defence) were not good enough to start the season with. This probably explains why Wenger played gallas and vermalaen in so many games (in the league), instead of resting them once in a while.

  218. Thank you This is England. Where can I collect?

  219. You fucking moron, dan. The transfer market is NOT a supermarket.

    If it were Man City would have bought themselves a squad to win the league.

  220. That said, i don’t think our first choice CBs played that many games anyways. Aren’t CB’s supposed to be able to play much more because they don’t exert themselves as much as other outfield players?

  221. LimparAssist

    Wasn’t going to play Senderos? He did play Senderos. I watched him play against West Brom and against Liverpool in the Carling Cup. He played well and we won both games.

    If Gallas or TV had have been injured at that time, Senderos would have played.

    As it was, they were not, he didn’t get enough game time to suit his WC ambitions, so he requested a move and went to Everton; at which point Sol Campbell was brought in.

  222. Henristic,

    That’s your opinion & I think you’re wrong. For me; TV, Gallas, Djourou, Senderos, Song & Silvestre is a very strong lineup.

  223. ole let me clear it last was a bit murky

    we have a wage bill of 120mil

    and weve extented 17 contracts

    so the point that we are skint and wise with money and dont waste any is such idiocy

  224. Ole, Bill and Dan’s and whoever else’s argument always gets back to the same thing. they truly believe in their minds that extra signings at whatever position is the popular scapegoat at the time would have GUARANTEEDLY provided us with trophies at the grove. Dan did it just 5 posts after I called him out for it. “Another CB definitely wouldve changed things”

    it demonstrates a fundamental lack of intelligence and understanding of cause and affect relationship, let alone a profound delusion about how a successful football club is run

  225. An interesting post for on a break and bored of skimming past Arsenal Holes:

    It seems a fair thing to say that Eboue and Sol needed to double back on Samba & Dunn.

    But I’m not sure how you can stop someone falling over, backwards, after they’ve taken a little run up, like Dunn did, without knocking them out, or inducing them to fall asleep.

    How to deal with this technique of grabbing an AFC and hurling them to the ground is a more important question for me? Have more AFC players sent off?

    Like many have observed, hard when your ‘hotheads’, Cesc ‘Pizzagate’ Fabregas & Alex ‘Run Craig, Run” Song etc. are off the field.

    This tactic a new, recent variant, maybe. Looks that way to me.
    Definatley excessive in the first half against Hull, After AFC scored against Brum, Blackburn etc.

    They scored too early against Blackburn.

    The Troll will not mention the new rules for next season. Which have influenced the clubs course.




  226. This is England

    Zim i will let you know later in the week.Its club level if you are really interested £50. I would meet you outside.

  227. ole are you bipolar???

    you hate havent wanted him playing for us for over a year..

    you always scapegoat him and now your saying hes part of a strong lineup

    sometimes you say things that make alot of sense but then you lose all credibility by going back on your own principles…

  228. Oh n our tacics this season has been nothing but too attack minded. In my mind only teams like barcelona and athletico madrid can do this… theyve got flair that works teams off in the opposition half. I dont think we r that kind of team! were better than that! We r more of an mu like team, able to hv free flow football when were on our game n capable of counter attacking 2 kill teams off when needed. The players lined up currently can do that n shud do that! Flooding the opposition post is not the way 2 go- leaves cb’s exposed.

  229. JonJon, if you think arsenal doesnt care about fans why the fuck do they bother doing extensive community work throughout north london, working with youngsters and setting up academies for kids in deprived areas. Whats that then, being careless?

    Once again you have proved yu know nothing, i mean NOTHING, about arsenal.

    Baffled dog

  230. NJGooner

    yeah AFC is run on lies and false promises..

  231. We just seem to get more injuries even if we don’t play that many games.

    Again why do we suffer injuries to our players so much? Is it luck? Is it our training methods? Is it because we get kicked so much? Or is it like Gary Lewin said, because we play too many games, and exert ourselves more than other teams do?

    If this injury trend continues without being addressed, then we can pretty much assume a worse record next season especially when the aftereffects of the world cup are factored in .

  232. >An interesting post for those

    Awful typing skills…they are improving, I think!

  233. ZAP

    if Arsenal cared about the fans then why do we throw 2 trophies every year and then say this club is full of ambition and winners..

    quite a contradiction dont you think

    but then again i know nothing…

  234. Jonjon

    On a roll eh? The AGM is a legal obligation and failure to hold one renders the directors open to prosecution under the Company’s Act.

    I presume you have registered your complaint with the club and the relevant authorities. Please let us know the outcome.


  235. JonJon,

    As the 6th player to provide backup, when most teams don’t have that luxury, I don’t mind it.

    If you want, leave him out of the count. My point remains the same. We had ENOUGH cover in the position.

  236. JonJon, you said it yourself, you know nothing. Now go away

  237. That’s not true,

    NojNoj’s amazing football mind told him that Chavski’s players would not flog thier bodies for one last effort before they are dismantled and be AFC’s main rivals to the title this season.

    He obviously knows what he is talking about.

  238. JonJon,

    About money…..

    Extending all those contracts was the right thing to do. Hard to come to any other conclusion.

    About how much money we have….I don’t know how much we have. What I do know is that we can not come close to spending as much as Man poo, Chavski; Man City and 3 other clubs.

    It doesn’t take too much to work that out.

  239. JonJon

    If you read my infrequent comments, I will take anyone to task who is patronising but normally I am a couple of hours behind so the moment has passed.

    You have missed the concept of Arsenal and football in general in the modern age. It is a global sport. Supporters come from all over this lump of rock that drifts in Space and as such are entitled to an opinion on the club.

    The whole ‘plastic’ argument about the fanbase is an ill-conceived and egotistical venture in any argument.


  240. You really don’t like this manager and squad at all do you, JonJon. That given I think you are wise not to turn up at the weekend. Why not make it permanent? You won’t have to suffer then. Whereabouts do you sit? I have three takers for your ticket in my own family.

  241. That’s your opinion & I think you’re wrong. For me; TV, Gallas, Djourou, Senderos, Song & Silvestre is a very strong lineup

    Ole, Djourou had a long term injury a few days before the season began like you said, so while it may be too much to expect him to have been replaced in that short period, you can’t possibly count him as back-up anymore (even if he is still a member of the squad as you keep pointing out). His injury was diagnosed to last all season.

    I find it hard to believe Senderos was in AW’s plan for this season. He would have given Senderos more games if that was the case. He certainly wouldn’t have let him go to everton either, as we still needed a CB at the time.

  242. But seriously, does anyone think our injury situation will get better next season?

  243. NJGooner,

    If we’d bought 5 players this season and won nothing, their criticism would have been; “we spent money and still won nothing”. How do I know? In 07/08, JonJOn & AIC told us exactly that.

    They believe that if we win no trophy then any criticism they level is valid because they’re disappointed.

    It’s a cry-baby approach.

    We’ve won nothing. Deal with it. You’re not hurting more than anyone else. Not less than Wenger who has to stick idiots like Cascarino or Collymore lecturing him when they don’t have 1/100th of his character, intelligence or success in life.

  244. Ole:

    Chelsea would have had our injury issues at CB they would have easily survived. Carvalho has missed as many games as Gallas and they had Alex. TV has been healthy the whole year until the last 2 games. Ivanovic could have covered if Terry missed a few games. The difference is that they had reasonable quality cover to start with. We do not need 6 CB like we started with last year. We need 2 reasonable quality backups and maybe Sol in reserve.

    NJgooner: Cool your jets. No one is saying having another CB would have guaranteed a trophy. Signings do not guarantee anything. I am saying we need to get enough quality cover at CB for next year and we will have a better chance to win.

    btw OLE I am not saying we did not have a terrible year with injuries. Much worse then Chelsea. Just saying Chelsea would have survived the injury situation that we did suffer at the one position (CB)

  245. Ole, if this season is anything to go by, Manu may well be out of that list

  246. Henristic,

    I left Djourou out of my last response to you. However I really shouldn’t have. An injured player is still an Arsenal player.

    Your squad is your squad, injured players or not.

    If Gallas, Vermaelen, Djourou & Song had been fit all season we’d not have seen Silvestre in an Arsenal shirt this season.

  247. the AGM has been postponed for a later date so the requirement will still be met..i think its august they will now hold the conference…what a coincidence dont you think

    there are loopholes in everything legal..

    i will not be going myself but my uncle and cousins will be..i will pass on your advice to them and see if we can force the club back to the orignial date…

  248. Also, Henristic, you fail to note that Vermaelen /& Gallas had not played together and AW wanted them to play as many games together as possible.

    Also, most managers don’t rotate their centre back pairing.

    The lack of rotation was not necessarily a lack of confidence in Senderos.

    I am pretty sure the theory of not wanting Senderos is baseless because, Senderos was going to be sold and AW called the deal off because Djourou got injured.

  249. YW,

    I was saving my ‘kit’ for the some light hearted ‘banter’ during the Great Summer Interlull, but as I was so upset after Monday’s game, the lack of Cesc or Ramsey in that midfield, the thought just came out.

    I’ll have to make a better effort over the summer, when there’s a lull at work!

    Note to myself: Never ever show even a sample to a fan that doesn’t have white sleeves…doh!

    I do hope that kit that came up on A.Blogger a little while back is the new kit.

  250. YW

    i have no problem with the ‘global fan’

    in order for arsenal to survive the global fan is needed therefore i welcome it with open arms

    but without the more ‘traditional fan’ the modern arsenal would not exist so i find it rather pathetic when i hear comments such as troll doomer or whatever other obsenitys this site advocates..

  251. I wonder how JonJon and his ilk can square their belief that Arsenal lie to their fans and don’t invest in the team with their other complaint that we have a massive wage bill?

    How do you do that? If you don’t want a great side, as JonJon obviously believes Arsenal doesn’t and that the Club is too mean to but players, why pay ‘inflated’ wages to crap players that we have?

    Another ‘supporter’, like Malaysian earlier and his desire for Cattermole, that has put himself beyond the Pale with his cynical wish to demonstrate against our Team and our manager at a time like this.


  252. frank

    i love the manager..the worst insult ive attributed to him is liar and lack of respect to the fans…never have i called him a c and i have been known on other sites to defend him against such tirades…and its also the reason why i dont blog on other sites

    but i do have lack of respect for the baord and the lies the spin and i do have no bond with some of the current squad due to their poor effort..not just this season but in seasons passed..

  253. Bill,
    I’m getting concerned now because your comments are soo erratic. Going into the last 4 games of the season we were missing, Gallas, Vermaelen (for all but 20 mins at Spurs), Song & Djourou. That’s 4 centre backs.

    So that’s the equivalent of them missing Terry, Carvalho, Ivanovic & Alex in their games against Bolton, Spuds, Stoke & then Liverpool.

    So l really really want to know who would have been the 2 players they’d field with the experience and quality of Campbell and Silvestre (despite Silvestre’s distinct lack of quality).

    What’s wrong with you people?

    You say we don’t need 6 centre backs we only need 2 quality back ups. Djourou & Senderos! Hello!!!!!!!!!!!

  254. consols that comment was neither here nor there in relevance to anything ive said…

    if you think all is well behind the scenes at the club then you are more short sighted than i first believed you was..

    i rated you on here as well as frank as the wise old heads but the more and more i read your comments the more and more i just think your a follower and not a leader..

    at least franks consistent and knows the baord are full of shit…

  255. Finsbury the new kit will be officialy released in July, and by the way the one thats was circulating is definitley fake, there is no new kits. I hope the white sleeves are brought back, please bring them back.

    JonJon you have been known on other blogs? Are you sure you are remembered and acknowledged by people if you go on other blogs, after you have left your legacy on them? You wise soul, all the best to yu.

  256. Paulie Walnuts

    I believe Arsene left us a little short at CB (excuse the pun) this season.

    With Johan unlikely to play at all we were left with Gallas who needs looking after a little these days, new the the club TV, Big Phil, Silvestre & Song to fill in if needed. It`s patently obvious that Silvestre isn`t premiership quality any more so we`ve actually been incredibly lucky that Vermaelen played 30 odd consecutive games before his injury.

  257. Thanks Zap.

    I saw the effort somone went through to show the pixel ‘joinery’ on those kits. A shame!

    I may attempt to write to the team responsible for the new cladding up around the stadium over the Summer.

    I think they did a good job.
    Maybe they can induce some of the ‘kit’ people from those big companies to come up with a decent kit. Probably not.
    Not many good kits around these days. I’d have thought that the PR hirelings would’ve worked out the importance of having a ‘cool’ kit.

  258. Frankly JonJon your opinion means nothing. As for being a followere, well, I can read opinions like yours almost anywhere that fools gather.

    Who the hell wants to be a leader? A leader of what?

  259. JonJon

    Neither fan is more important to the club.

    The traditional reliance upon gate money has diminished considerably to the point where commercial and broadcast revenues enable clubs to survive with falling gates. They are global revenue sources.

    That said, a drop in gate revenues adversely affects finances and the ability to sign players or develop them via the Academy.

    Hence, the club relies on both types of fan rather heavily.

    You may think that you are of little relevance to them but this has been the case since the late 1980s. Remember the furore about the bond in the North Bank.

    Re-reading a piece I wrote in one of the fanzines back then, I observed that the ‘fan’ they identified in programme insert was well paid, likely to be on a freebie and by removing the terracing, football was moving away from its core supporter base.

    Sound familiar?


  260. Yawn! Could someone give the record play a nudge, it looks like the needle got stuck.

  261. player not play!

  262. Ole:

    If you look at the back 5 outfield players. Chelsea lost Carvalho for as much of the year as Gallas. They lost Boswinga for most of the year. Cole missed a lot more games then Clichy and maybe most important Essien missed much much more time then Song. Vermaelen probably missed a couple more games then Terry. Chelseas 1st choice back 5 outfield players missed a lot more time then our 1st choice players. If you want to count JD in our column then the total games missed is probably close.

  263. HAHAHA ^^

  264. im pretty sure ole has typed the names of our first team center halves 8759 times in posts today.

    JonJon i find it interesting hearing you talk abotu the “lies” and “deceit” that occur in our boardroom. For those not involved in the process, its very easy and appealing to imagine a dimly lit room, big leather arm chairs, each man with a fluffy white cat on his lap scheming on how to get the most $ from fans will depriving them of trophies. You hear this kind of criticism about corportations from globalization conspiracy theorists. Do you really think board members arent 10X more freaked out by the lack of trophies this yeaR? dont you think AW knows the shit might be starting to hit the fan? you talk about our club like they have an agenda that promotes above all else watching us suffer. please explain yourself.

  265. chelsea have only a few recognised CB’s as ole rightly points out…but the difference is they are not crocks and the chelsea team dont spend 90mins week in week out getting kicked about the pitch…

    we could have a squad of a 100 players and we still wouldnt have enough..such is the treatment we get…

    it needs to change we need to get tough…teams need to realise they will get kicked back and when that happens the injuries will start to ease up

    theres also the fact that our defenders risk more burnout than other clubs because they do more running and covering compared to other teams who have a natural defensive plan..

    we have none..our midfield bomb forward as well as our FBs and our CBs get left covering 3 positions…its too much..gallas never lasts as season and breaks down and the same happened to TV this season..

  266. Ole, for the umpteeth time, Djourou was injured long time from the start of the season. Senderous was loaned out when it was clear we still needed backup as evidenced by Cambell’s signing in that same window.

    How can you count them either of them as back-ups then?

    I know you don’t rate silvestre, but AW rates him enough to have played him in games where djourou was available last season.

  267. Consolsbob @6.23pm

    A lot people want to lead; a lot of people want to follow them. The edge of the abyss beckons…


  268. yeah well finsbury, i agree.

    Plus, why can’t the home kit be sponsorless, its not as if EMIRATES AIRLINE isnt all over the stadium anyway, including the name of it!

  269. yw

    i hated it when they took the terraces away..(which i blame liverpool for)
    footballs become a theatre now..especially the emirates..

    prefer the away games…

  270. Bill,

    Anyway you dice it, we’ve still suffered more injuries. We’ve had Gibbs & Clichy miss most of the season. Almunia miss a lot of games.

    But that’s a way to obscure the issue.

    If they had the same injury situation we had today, with 4 centre backs out they’d have to dip into their Reserves for players, and I am quite sure there’d have been very adverse consequences.

    I find it absurd that you’re twisting yourself out of shape to try to make absurd claims that fit your desire for more players.

    You say Chelsea’s first choice back 5 have missed more games. Only true if you count Bosingwa’s long-term injury which of course you should count.

    The other 4 players have missed a comparable number of games.

    Gallas has been out as long as Carvalho. Clichy as long as Cashley, Almunia longer than Cech.

    If you factored in the backups, there’s no comparison given how long Gibbs, Fabianski, Djourou, were out for.

    Bottom line is that they haven’t suffered worse injuries. They’ve suffered fewer.

  271. Consols i have no intention to talk morals or principles with you..i have my view you have yours which we are both entitled to..

    NJ i dont have to explain’ll find that the board however do..i have my reasons for not trusting them as far as i can throw them..

    if you think everythings rosey then thats upto you..

  272. ole,

    i don’t call names but you really are a fool in this CB discussion.

    you are so wrong it is unbelievable, johan and senderos can’t be included as back up due to injury and the manager not being interetsed in him and song NEEDs to play centre midfield. even wenger saying only last week that he is no centre back.

    overall as a whole on the season gallas played 35 games and Tv 45, not that bad. the problem was silvestre had to replace them when they weren’t available.

  273. you keep on including those two and they simply aren’t relevant to the discussion as wenger knew last august he couldn’t or wouldn’t use them.

  274. Ole:

    No doubt that we have suffered much worse long term injuries to our front 5 players and that has been a terrible blow to our season. How you slice up the stats in the back 5 is obviously a matter of interpretation. (did you really want to count what happened to Almunia as injuries?)

    I am hoping for a draw in the game this afternoon. It would be nice to not have to worry about 3rd place this weekend. I hate spuds but I would rather have them in the CL then Citeh next year.

  275. I wonder how many followers the ‘Great Leader’ will attract to his demo?

  276. I imagine it will be all over the TV, what with the traffic being halted and everything.

    Arsene Wenger wringing his hands on the news, begging forgiveness for failing him. The Board prostrate at his feet. Players rending their shirts and tearing up their contracts.

    It’s going to be quite a sight.

  277. consols i have no doubt whatsoever that ppl will attend the game..

    but trust me there will be a protest of some sort at some stage..which i dont really agree with as it could turn ugly..

    protests dont really achieve anything but provacation..a total boycott would avoid confrontation and achieve the point thats wanted to be made..

  278. This is England

    Zim if you are still reading my son now wants the ticket. But i will bear you in mind next time.

  279. Anyone who protests because his injury ravaged team is currently 3rd in the PL deserves the kicking he will get from the real Arsenal supporters at the game.

  280. consols i think you are confusing the word boycott with something else entirely..

  281. Turn ugly? Why?

    Anybody’s livelihood being threatened by those megalomaniacs at Arsenal? Personal liberties being taken away? Being sent to some pointless foreign war?

    Oh no! Worse. Our football team finished third in the League!

    Just pop down to Mothercare and hire a few prams to thow your toys out of.

    Grow up.

  282. violence only achieves violence passenal

    i thought a lady would have known better

  283. I’m a little young, but my old boss gave me the impression that one aspect of the Punk ethic was sef-sufficiency. Not to be a slave. To avoid the concept of ‘debt without honour’ in all it’s forms.

    From Johhny Alpha to Sid Vicious, it was a pretty obvious mantra.

    “Black shadow of the Vincent
    Falls on a Triumph line
    I got my motorcycle jacket
    But I’m walking all the time”

    What other club have built their own stadium and not been relegated?

    One other club was given a stadium via government. I hope the Wet Ham don’t get totally Spammed by the Chuckle Brothers and end up on the Olympic site. It might happen.

  284. i think the crowd are going to be barely awake let alone it all going off!!!!

  285. LimparAssist

    Bollocks. If any protest is made it’ll be one or two fat ingrates shouting at a player for misplacing a pass. If they get too loud they’ll be told to sit down and shut up by the rest of us.

    Turn ugly!

  286. Well done, Passenal…you are a star

  287. LimparAssist

    Interesting, Finsbury. This is only very loosely related but do you know of FC St Pauli? They are a Hamburg based club with links to punk and other counter-culture movements in Germany. I’m thinking of adopting them as ‘my German club’. They just won promotion to the Bundesliga this year, and I’ve wanted to go to Hamburg for some time. Check ’em out – it’s a cool club.

    Right, off to watch the game.

    Happy St Totteringham’s Day everybody!

  288. You’ve obviously never watched Kill Bill, JonJon. Watch your eyes on Saturday, son.

  289. Bill,

    Something you overlook is when we suffer an overload of injuries in any one area.

    That never happens to other teams. Going into that season-defining run of games starting at Villa Park we had 4 strikers out injured.

    Now we have 3 centre backs out injured.

    Look, Yohi posted the stats. Chelski haven’t come close to having the same number of injury enforced absences.

    Take out any team’s 3 centre backs and they will be weaker for it.

    I’d have thought that’d be obvious, but it doesn’t fit into your pre-conclusion that it only affects Arsenal.

  290. Limpar, I’m a bit long in the tooth for that sort of thing, but I remember reading about that team and they sounded intriguing. Just what football should be about. You wouldn’t find their supporters whinging on line because they didn’t sell their souls to the devil in order to win shiny tin cups!

  291. I wont be going frank..

  292. I’m still waiting for a response on what you guys think about the chances of our injury situation improving next season

  293. FC St Pauli?

    Sounds interesting.

    All these precious ‘season ticket’ holders really should look at Germany, if they dare, where they still have variable seating etc…and realise that AFC is the closest thing to what they have out there.

    Obviously, the prices haven’t dropped yet, but they have to be relative to the PL.

    They even had a proper riots. Not fake riots, outside the stadium etc. Proper riots!

    But, they don’t have people with with big drums geeing the crowd on. I’d love to see the reaction of some at TNHOF to such a sight.

  294. God, St Pauli’s a blast from the past! I spent my year abroad in Hamburg. You see that skull & crossbones all over town, but they were down in the third tier when I was there.

  295. ole,

    what you are missing is that sometimes you can get hit by a rash of injuries and there is nothing you can do about it, ie Rvp and bendtner out at the same time for a long period of time. the issue at centre back is that the problems could have and should have been foreseen last august, there is no need for hindsight here. you are right we have been so hard by injuries, but we KNEW about djourou in august and wenger clearly knew in august that he wasn’t going to trust senderos anymore. therefore the legitimate question is knowing BOTH those things in August let alone January when he did let senderos go was it prudent to be left with silvestre as the back up to TV and Gallas?

    as i said we were lucky TV and Gallas were fine through mid February when at least campbell was there as cover even though he couldn’t play two games in a week and we got lumbered with silvestre at the nou camp!!!.

  296. Coward

  297. Ole:

    No doubt we have had a terrible year injury wise. Doubt AFC or any team will win anything if they have the same number of injuries as we have had. Our team cohesion has been destroyed. We probably all have our theories but I wish we really understood why it happens.

  298. I don’t know. Football is in crisis, some clubs are financially doped, the FA are corrupt and inept, referees even more so, UEFA are trying to kill the EPL, rule changes are essential but no chance, supporters are even more disenfranchised than ever, the press and media are superficial beyond belief, football viewing is virtually controlled by a megalomaniac Australian etc etc…and Arsenal ‘supporters’ want to have a go at the one guy who stands up to it all on his own, their own manager. You are mentally ill, JonJon….AIC and dan not very far behind. Utterly misguided.

  299. No Frank. He’s taking positive action. Taking a lead.

    Something that most of us are too cowed or foolish to do.

    The man’s a hero. Or a prat. I have trouble with words sometimes.

  300. I think Murdoch is a citizen of ‘The Land of the Free’ these days.

  301. Frank

    It’s on Sunday which is why he isn’t going Saturday.


  302. Thank you for the link about Arshavin, Passenal. I hope he has many more great games with Arsenal.

  303. so anyone questioning what is going on at their football club is misguided?

    you must have had a very strict up bringing!!

  304. Not much else to give thanks for today.

  305. Very much so Dan.

    In between beatings and the Kirk, my father would make me say over and over agin, ‘Never suffer fools gladly’.

    I’ll never forget it.

  306. YW, I think he’s not going regardless of what day it’s on, since he is making a protest by boycotting the game. Weak support like his is hardly worth having anyway.

  307. Jon Jon,
    no point trying to have a debate with someone that thinks the words chavs and man poo are funny but then again I doubt their supporters are to bothered as every time they rock up to us these days we roll over for them 😉 onwards and upwards !

  308. Well there you go, Consolsbob! It’s character-building, isn’t it?

  309. It helps you grow a backbone. I’ve always been a big fan of backbones.

  310. Thanks, YW, important bit of information that.

  311. as apposed to what kind of support passenel??

    the kind of ‘rea’l fan that sits on their hands the entire game and leaves 15mins towards the end??

    the kind of ‘support’ that sits and just wants to take photos all game

    the emirates is full of heavy walletted tourists and the board love them because they have more money than the hardcore fan..then they have the nerve to complain about the atmosphere???

    it makes me sick…but you carry on living in your dream world where everythings fine and dandy..

  312. Time for The Leaky Slashers to gird their loins.

  313. I don’t suppose you’ve ever had much use for a backbone, have you JonJon?

  314. chippy

    anyone who has an opinion is misguided..anyone who has a question needs to f@ck off

    for some reason AFC has become a totalitarian state and anyone who raises so much of an eyebrow is sent to the chamber..

  315. I think we should all go on mass protest at the last game, with Frank, no, I know.. JonJon, at the helm, with a huge banner that reads as follows !!!:


    – World class training ground

    – World class stadium

    – World class academy

    – 2 doubles

    – 1 unbeaten season

    – 3 league titles

    – 4 FA Cups

    – 13 consecutive seasons in champions league

    – 3 1st places, 6 2nd places, 2 3rd places, 2 4th places

    – Champions league runner up, 1 semi, 2 quarter finals

    – Net spend £32 million

    – Fantastic football

  316. ive got more backbone than the entire arsenal squad has put together poli

    that wouldnt be hard though..seeing as though the majority of them have the backbone of an insect..

  317. Well, Muppet, when you put it like that, it does seem Wenger has rather a lot to answer for.

  318. Yep that board really give a shit about the Supporters or should I say consumers????

    How many of them have already sold up to the highest bidder? Isn’t Mrs Arsenal now prostertuting hers out trying to get the best price? And how long before Fisman joins in the cash grab?

    But your right we should just sit there quietly and warmly clap our wonderful board, they’ve taken our badge our ground and now they are slowly eroding our identity good on em I say

  319. can somebody please explain to me why this so called ‘protest’ at the ground is being linked with my name???

    for an extremely clever blog its filled with some extremely thick individuals..

    a boycott of something is where you dont turn up…

    so whats all this crap about mass protests and marches and banners at the ground ???

    or have i missed something??

  320. chippy

    thats just what we are we are customers. and its wrong

  321. are we already relegated?

  322. CBob don’t demean yourself by getting entangled in their demonic bilge – you are much, much better than that and, contrary to what was said earlier, a model of consistency and a voice of reason.

    Jon Jon just go to fucking bed.

    You must be very tired anyway what with having to type all those big words out painstakingly with the big stick on your forehead.

  323. are we on the brink of administration?

  324. Brilliant by Muppet. Can I copy it?

    I’m getting bored of the arguments with these guys. I’d like to just copy that comment and paste it anywhere they start their toxic shit.

  325. Next Sunday, thousands of Arsenal fans are planning to protest against the way the club is run by returning to their seats late after half time and leaving before the final whistle.

  326. The protest is gathering pace. Arsenal supporters from all over the world with placards, all led by JonJon, who has prepared the placards and billboards and megaphones. United in condemnation of Wenger’s crimes. United in purpose. A call for backbone, a call for traditional support, a call for change.

  327. This is England

    Pol thats funny

  328. jonny is that you in the picture?? you look like a girl

    well done on mantaining the boy george look..

    we can trade insults all you want but id rather talk football…

  329. That has to be Muppet, surely. Otherwise there is a new star in the firmament.

    Thanks Jonny. Very kind. But it’s no trouble really lowering myself to ‘ debate’ with him.

    Wait a minute, JonJon, Jonny. He stops posting and you start…

    Anybody else having trouble with this ‘Battle for Fourth’? My head tells me that it’s better for the spuds to win as they’ll cock it up anyway but every time that the mancs attack, i want them to score.

  330. So is anyone going to answer my questions regarding the board and the cash grab or just maybe has it left you wondering?

  331. Wasn’t that Nick Clegg, Muppet? Shurely shome mistake…

  332. No, Poliziano, that’d be JonJon and his 3 pals. Socking a blow into the gut of an Arsenal that hates its fans.

  333. No wondering required Chippy. It’s clear that you are out of your depth.

  334. I’m not that handsome consolsbob.

    Must be cleggy.

  335. Some insects have exo-skeletons.

    A bit like Ramsey’s leg in that healing contraption.

  336. Some of these damn insects can lift several hundred times their body weight.

  337. Ha! CBob how DARE you infer that!

    *spits in disgust and claws at own skin*


    The battle for 4th is okay for me – basically I want Spurs to get fucking trampled, but I’ll settle for a draw. I’m hoping they ‘think’ they have scored several more times just to increase their agony.

  338. its pointless chippy

    nobody has an opinion on it…unless it involves F@ck You or your a C@nt you pretty much wont get a decent response..

  339. jon jon.. hilarious comment about the backbone! how true! maybe thats where our injury problems stem from, lack of a spinal column!! and being an internet tough “ive got more backbone than the whole squad” makes you sound like a 6 yr old

    to your belligerent point about fat walleted tourists. im not sure you’ve ever been to a game at the Emirates. I have had the spectacular fortune of completing my pilgrimage this April. Not only is REALLY REALLY hard to get tickets for non red-members, if you dont know someone its literally impossible. so saying that the stands are packed full of thick walleted tourists is just belligerent. i was able to secure them through a friend of my father’s. and i made sure that i contributed everything i could to the atmosphere.

    again this goes back to my post earlier @ 6:28, which btw you NEVER responded too, as i assumed you wouldnt. your talking about our club, the manager, even the players as all being involved in this scheme to keep $$ pouring into the club without producing results. maybe thats why AW insists on pre-season training in low key areas. Thats obviously when the board, the coaching staff, and the players all get together to scheme us out of $

  340. Jon Jon – why would you want to talk football?

    You clearly know nothing about it.

  341. Haha, Muppet. That cracked me up. No trial, just hang the french man, eh?

  342. NJ

    you dont have a clue what your talking about…which is why i didnt respond to you…

    Ok jonny we can talk lipstick if you want..although i dont know much about that i guess you win on both counts..

  343. No one has called you a name for some time now JonJon. Nor your mate Chippy for that matter.

    God knows why not.

  344. Scousers do you know what REAL pain is? What we we have to go through?

  345. Jon Jon, no whats clear is that the point i was making is one that rings true. you are paranoid. earlier you said “they took our badge” do you mean when they updated it? “they took our ground” do you mean when they built a new stadium and got rid of terraces?

    im sure you’re a younger guy who has realized he has missed the “glory” days of football support and hooliganism when clubs survived solely on the locals who came to the ground and the pies they bought at half time and you are bitter.

  346. So that’s a no then,It Cracks me up it’s like the lemming society on here tonight if the ownership of our club seriously does not worry you there really is no point

    Haha JonJon I always prefer consolbobs approach, If you cannot answer it pretend your more clever than the guy who asked the question brilliant

  347. NJ

    read back through the comments and ive said all thats needed to be said…i answered your question about 4 hours ago before you even asked it..

    and now your just talking rubbish..

  348. Lipstick? Erm not sure what you are on about JonJon? Care to elucidate?

    You must get a kick out of the antagonism – why else come back and wind people up (with no real aim or skill) over and over?

    One form of madness is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.

  349. Another form of madness is talking to yourself.

  350. where’s the money? why do you ignore this important issue? why don’t you just speculate, ffs!

  351. i love the fact that people go to so much effort to copy an avatar and a name and then tell me im on a wind up…

  352. schlaker

    read back through the comments…

    again your question was anwered hours ago..

  353. jonjon my martyr.

  354. 1 loose cannon

    Shit.. the spuds have scored

  355. The bloody grinch keeps stealing St Totteringham’s Day.

  356. Bollocks, fecking Crouch.

    No denying the Spudshave looked worth it.

    Shows what a difference having your first team available can make.

  357. NJ,
    I asked them questions not jonjon, We are a traditional English Football Club not a brand not a franchise and yes when they took our badge it meant something as it did when they took are ground now these things don’t mean much to the money men or overseas fans but they did to us,

    Thaks for answering the question in the way you did as your answer has shown exactly why id never want an American owner of The Arsenal oh and for your info yes I was there through the 80s

  358. 1 loose cannon

    It looks like the C.league will start to smell a little bad now the Spuds are coming. No rest for our players we simply have to sort out Fulham.No choice

  359. Arrivederci Mancini.

  360. Who is that tall fella who keeps getting flagged off-side for Citeh?

  361. 1 loose cannon

    in a fit of anger the city owners will start throwing money left right and centre come the summer. they did not look happy at all.

  362. I don’t think Citeh had a shot on target in the 2nd half.

  363. 1 loose cannon

    what a digustin scene watching the spud players celebrating like they won the C.league. We have to put up with their shit now.

  364. Fulham lost at home to Stoke.

  365. Fook me….the tinies in the Champions League spot. Who’d ahev thunk it possible?

  366. It’s funny to see just how much fresher Spu*ds were compared to our injury ravaged squad.

    Still, it will be great to see how they f*ck it up next season when they get a few injuries.

    Look forward to stuffing spu*ds home and away next season.

  367. That’s a good result for us. Really. If the mancs had qualified this yeat they would have bought anybody they wanted. Now? No.

    Tha spuds will cock it up.

  368. Yep and the scum will be able to attract better quality now so unless we invest in the key positions we will have a proper fight on for the top four, that’s why I wanted city to be 4th as they will spend either way, it’s going to be tight at the top next year! It will be funny if they get knocked out in qualifying tho 😉

  369. Well Toure and Ade did say they went to Citeh to win trophies. Maybe money cant buy titles.Citeh are looking rather silly after all their bold statements. I dont know who I detest more Spurs or City? Now to beating Full Ham.

  370. 1 loose cannon

    finishing 4th is one thing competing on 4 fronts at the highest level is another. I could easily see the spuds struggling for a midtable place next season. We all remember what happend to Everton the year they qualified. City will spend the cash regardless.

  371. Spurs like Ciy and Aston Villa didn’t have to play extra games in Europe to ravage their squad. Therefore all their improved league positions compared to last season.

    Remember Leeds. That’s the beginning of the end.

  372. So on SUNDAY, SUNDAY, SUNDAY…we need all the support we can get to ensure that we secure third place.

    ….and JonJon reckons he is organising it so that people don’t turn up….

    …and that ladies and gentlemen is the real problem with many Arsenal ‘supporters’ today.

  373. I agree with CB…

  374. 1 loose cannon

    the Spuds will not be seeded so they will meet a top european side in their 2 legged play off to qualfy for the C.league propper. Of course I’m assuming we will get the result we need against Fulham to secure 3rd. I’m a bit disapointed that that we wre title contenders and now we have to fight it out with spuds for 3rd. I’m confident we will get the result a point will do for us.

  375. that’s *City*

  376. We will win emphatically on SUNDAY…..RvP gets his hattrick at last. Looking forward to it. Fancy JonJon missing a game like that….or at least his cousin and his uncle…one of whom might be his mum or his dad.

  377. City will spend anyway but many players will not go there with no CL. It’lle be more of the same misfits and mercenaries.

  378. I’ll be there on Sunday supporting our team to get the points we need. I will not be protesting or wishing for the spuds to finish above us so that Arsene either gets the sack or is forced to ‘splash the cash’.

    I’m not surprised to hear that Fulham lost tonight as they were very fortunate to get 3 points off west ham at the weekend. I hope they are still looking as jaded on Sunday with half a mind on their Europa league final.

  379. 1 loose cannon

    the fact that the Spuds are in it it might just push our players to do better. Imagine winning the C.league the year the Spuds have qualified.It will be their one and only time and they will have to remember we won it on that year. I would love that.

  380. Oh, ‘Arry will be kept busy in the Summer.
    It’s his job!
    Nothing strange about that.

  381. So will I, Passenal, so will I.

  382. Roy hodgson will set his side up to frustrate Arsenal. He’ll come aiming to make a point.

    Listen up you Arsenal boys, if you’re reading this (and I know you’re not), the worst thing of all that you could do is let the tinies finish above us. If you do, there’ll be trouble….

  383. Ah well. let’s see what the Spuds have got. I am quite happy to have only one Northern team in the top 4. Maybe next year…none.

  384. 1 loose cannon

    Passenal- we had a gap of 10 points at one stage it just hard to accept what has happened to us no luck at all but that what happens when you play at the highest level. injuries tirdness creeps up at the end of the season. Lets see how the Spuds deal with that.

  385. See if we can get Fulham into the top four too next season.


  386. Maybe we’ll have a real rivalry with the spuds again. More liekly is that they completely collapse next season

  387. Don’t worry, OG. The challenge is good.

  388. 1 loose cannon

    Ole -This might be the kick in the back side we need. We always do better than them so if the Spuds finish 2nd we will win the title and know they qualified we might win the C. league.

  389. Next seasons EPL standings…

    1. Arsenal
    2. Fulham
    3. Spuds
    4. Chelski
    5. Mancs II
    6. Mancs I………

    …. London…..

  390. I see Ronaldo (another hat trick) is keeping Madrid in the title race in Spain.

  391. Frank, I’m also quite glad to see 3 London teams in the Top 4.

    Sadly, I’m nevertheless wishing the mancs win the league.

    it’d be too much for one season, to see Chavs win double & scum in Champions League, after our own collapse & trophiless season.

    Somehow I can rationalise Feggerson winning it, much as they don’t deserve it, and twisted as my desires are.

  392. Frank, that would be better if West Ham replaced the Spuds due to Harry doing his usual overspending.

  393. It’s up to the players now to find the mental and physical resources for one last push before the end of the season. The crowd needs to get behind them, no moaning and groaning or recriminations. We are where we are now and we need to stick together to get us over the line. Come on you Gunners!

  394. Interesting how when Real Mallorca play Real Madrid only Real Madrid get called Real. Whilst Real Mallorca do not get to be called Real…..unreal.

  395. But which of the two Reals is really Real?

  396. Chippy

    8.47pm questions:

    >How many of them have already sold up to the highest bidder

    Pretty much all of them at some point.

    >Isn’t Mrs Arsenal now prostertuting hers out trying to get the best price

    Presumably that is NBS. If so, given her treatment, I’m not surprised. However, she is not a board member:

    Oh and it’s prostituting.

    >And how long before Fisman joins in the cash grab

    Having sold some of his shares already, I’d say he’s in the queue already.

    >But your right we should just sit there quietly and warmly clap our wonderful board, they’ve taken our badge our ground and now they are slowly eroding our identity good on em I say

    Nope, if you’d care to come on here and read through the comments on other posts, you’d find that the board receive the credit for their financial stewardship in getting the stadium built but very few trust them.

    They are better at their jobs than most boards and remain true to the plurality of ownership (for the moment) that most want to remain in place. However, they are far from perfect, have made mistakes and will make more also.

    Presumably you believe that Usmanov is a better bet. But no, you cannot believe that because then you would be prostituting your club…


  397. Oh I agree that the Mancs should win the league, OG, if only to shove one up the potential, but probably not after recent events, in-laws.

  398. “I see Ronaldo (another hat trick) is keeping Madrid in the title race in Spain.”

    It’s bizarre watching him; he’s got no vision, he’s a terrible passer and an average dribbler (IMO), but few teams in England or Spain can handle his pace and strength. I’ve never known a player like Cronaldo because he’s more valuable to a team if he just plays for himself like he’s done tonight.

  399. Sorry, dupsffokcuf…I reckon that West Ham will supplant Spuds in the EPL the following season.

    The it will be..

    1. Arsenal
    2. Fulham
    3. West Ham
    4. Chelski
    5. Everton
    6. Wrest Brom………


    18. Mancs II
    19. MancsI
    20. Liverpool

    Bolton, Wigan and Blackburn having been relegated next season…

    We will keep Stoke in the EPL to play with for a little while longer…bit of fun

  400. He never really showed against us did he?

  401. I think he did towards the end, when he developed into the freakish physical specimen he is now, but I remember Eboue keeping him subdued on a few occasions.

  402. Only once Frank, that CL match, otherwise no.

    YW to be fair to Fiszman, he does have serious health problems, which may account for why he needed to take a step back with a strategic sale of some shares. He hasn’t sold all his shares either, so he still retains an interest. if it was just about profit, why not cash in all his shares?

  403. Chippy

    unfortunately for you and fortunately for me, Arsenal are not just a traditional English football club. and they are indeed a “brand”, it would be hard to argue against that when discussing the 3rd biggest club in the world. and im sorry you feel that they took your ground, i hope that hasnt spoiled your assessment of the Emirates because i find it absolutely breathtaking. and maybe thats your point. the Emirates or Ashburton Grove as im sure you’d prefer, is one of the best sporting facilities in the world and by far the nicest I’ve ever been too. Maybe you dont like that Arsenal have one of the 5 nicest stadiums in Europe. maybe thats not the Arsenal you want. Maybe it pisses you off that, as an American, I can follow the team just as closely as you can save being at the ground week in week out. If thats the case then I feel bad for you. I wish I couldve seen the things you saw at Highbury, with the terraces, and the hooliganism, and the solidarity in suffering through the decades of trophyless season after trophyless season. But i also have the knowledge now, as a 23 yr old, to know that things change. and things certainly have changed dramatically over the past 25-30 yrs in football. And the bulk of those changes have come in the arena of making football into a large scale business operation, where a club’s performance is necessary on 2 fronts, on the pitch and in the boardroom. If these changes are unsettling to you i feel bad for you, but im not sorry. These changes have brought me in contact with something that brings out a response that I have never felt before from any other type of sporting pursuit. I love the club, and i always will, and i will support them to the best of my abilities.

  404. 1 loose cannon

    Frank- There is only one team in London. I lived north, east, west and south of London and the Arsenal Jersey still outnumber the lot of them. the Chavs have recently caught up with us in the south west which is their territory. The Spuds are a rarity . Lets hope it remains that way.

    Thats my list
    West Ham
    Queens park rangers
    Crystal palace
    Is there any other London Teams?

  405. Nice post as usual YW. But by God they were all out today weren’t they? Enough shitty comments in 1 day to last a month!! Anyways, the Spuds will still have to win next week and need us to lose. A draw and we are safe in 3rd. I just cannot wait to see them playing the likes of Barca, Real Madrid, Inter, Bayern….Hell even Lyon would beat them!! Just more games for me to sit down and watch the Spuds lose, sooooo looking forward to next season.

    Would like to point something out though. In regards to the team losing that fighting spirit that they, despite what a few idiots claim, had earlier in the season, we should remember that it is a World Cup year and inevitably when you have nothing left to play for and are already convinced that you will tie up 3rd spot, you do tend to hold something back. I am not defending it but I am realistic. We were also missing some of our most influential players so please people(we all know who you are) if you want to bitch and complain and insult our players and manager, there is a blog dedicated to just that, it is called Le Grove. I fully appreciate criticism but thrashing our team is not cool and should stop.

  406. You missed out Leyton Orient…and my second favourite because of their circumstances, AFC Wimbledon, 1ic. a real supporters club.

  407. Yogi,
    Thank You for taking the time to actually respond and for your info no I certainly wouldn’t want a gangster running my club in fact I’d rather Silent Stanley than him, My point was more to do with the fact everyone jumps on you if you in anyway speak out against the club Even if you have genuine concerns and beleive me I do with this board it’s seen as an attack on Wenger when in this case I personally would love to flush out exactly what the board are up to I And if that means empty seats I’m all for it,

    sorry about the spelling I don’t have much use for looking up the word prostituting 🙂 I’m on my phone and that don’t help!

  408. Anyway this is football and it is good that the traditional top 4 have been…er…changed.

  409. unfortunately the south is full of chelski fans, but i agree with 1lc, we are dominant in east, north and most of west london. Definitly west london. We are the pride of london….

    Arsenal 4 eva, dont you forget it!!!!

    Umm, werent we supposed to finish 5th behind man city and liverpool? Yeah…..

    Let’s beat fulham, we wouldnt want our situation to get even worse and be overtaken by spurs- it can’t happen.

  410. Dagenham and orient if you count them, 1lc

  411. Oh Carmon. They are all gangsters in one way or another. Except Lady Nina. If we have to have some cut-throat business man own the club outright…then let it be a real cut-throat. Not one whose great grandad was a cut-throat.

    Lets shock the world by being the first fucking pirate football club.

    The first club to be owned by a man who is apparently connected with…boiling people alive.

  412. NJGooner – I have been living in NY for the best part of 13 years but have been lucky enough to make the trip to Highbury/Emirates at least 5/6 times a year. It used to be a lot more when I lived in Dublin. But you are right in saying that just because you are not able to go every week that you are not an Arsenal fan. The stadium holds 60,000, we have millions of fans around the world. If the only fans we had were the ones who went to the games, how much do you think we would get in terms of endorsements/sponsorship deals/tv rights? I live in Manhattan and trust me it feels great when I see another fan sporting an Arsenal jersey, actually it usually leads to a bit of drinking session but I am not complaining!!

    As to the poster who said he is sick of seeing the fans who show up to games but just sit there and take photos, so fucking what? They bought the ticket and can do want they want. I was there in the 80’s, I much prefer the people who come and sit then the idiots who scream racist crap and throw shit every time the opposition scores. Its also great seeing so many young fans at the games, for they are the next generation of fans.

  413. oops that should have read “that does not mean you are not an Arsenal fan” sorry NJGooner 🙂

  414. lolo i agree irishgray, having tottenham in the champions league can only be good for us.

    On an only slightly related but on the whole unrelated note, i was shocked to find out will farell, my favourite actor is a chavski fan. It became obvious it’s just a part of his comedic personality, however, so its arright.

  415. Zap – of course it is as it means there is 1 less team in the mix that can pose a threat to us 🙂

  416. Would cesc even make the barca first team? I dont even think he would, they play 4-3-3, with a player similar to song, busquets, toure yaya or keita, alongside xavi and iniesta so it would make no sense for him to leave right now,

  417. It would be even more hilarious if they get knocked out in the qualifying round

  418. Zap – no he would not and that is why all this conjecture year in and year out of him leaving is ridiculous. But he is in a very lucky spot as Barcas first choice midfield is also Spains first choice. So if and when he can force his way ahead of them on the Spain team then and only then would he move to Barca. So lets hope Iniesta and Xavi have a few more years in them, sorry Cesc!!!

  419. But who will they play? Ajax maybe or PSV? Or just for fun some crazy Russian team thats based 8,000 miles away, -20 degrees weather, and then we play them in the league 3 days later!!!

  420. Chippy

    Everyone has a right to complain about matters in the club, especially the owners who are essentially unaccountable for their actions unless the business goes belly up.

    The problem is no-one has a solution. The alternatives are not particularly endearing, one for his past actions, the other because we know little or nothing about him.

    Neither has stated their intentions for reasons to do with legalities (or at least that is the screen behind which they hide) and until someone proves that they are going to improve the situation without encumbering more debt on the club, how can they expect to be supported or trusted.


  421. I know this is off topic, but did anyone watch the Motherwell – Hibs game? It finished 6-6!! Thats got to be on the net somewhere right?

  422. YW

    I get the point that the board is not exactly loved, but the same can be said about any team. Yet the fact is we did build a fantastic new stadium, along with a new training ground, put a lot of money into our academy, have retained an incredible squad, and have managed our debt exceptionally well.

    Now we find ourselves in the almost unique position of having a club that pretty soon will be as close to debt free as a EPL club can be, with out being bought out by a billionaire who will fire his manager every 6 months, sell players at the drop of a hat, and really does not give a shit about the fans or the club.

    Yes Sheik Akmad Bin Akmbaboo or whatever his name is at Shiteh has spent 200 million and will spend even more, but the fans are still stuck going to a shitty stadium and are still not in the CL!! In short, well done Board and well done Arsene!

  423. 1 loose cannon

    Shit Frank you making me feel bad now I can’t believe I left out Leyton orient I lived in Leyton for a year. Yes and AFC wimbeldon supporters deserve a lot of credit for what they have achieved so far. Their club was taken away from them in a flash.

  424. What the fuck has happened tonight? Were only two points ahead of spuds and they beat us, what the fuck is happening?

  425. Morse – the end is nigh my friend, the end is nigh!! Repent all ye sinners!!

  426. irish gray

    i was the idiot the posted the comment about taking photos at the stadium..

    you answer so fucking what

    but the point of it all is that the emirates is absolutely crap for atmosphere…the club moan about the lack of atmosphere but it is a problem they have created for them selves by selling tickets to every man and his dog…they sellout to the highest bidder as its all about the money to them and you’ll find alot of fans who regularly attended highbury no longer go to the emirates..

    one of the biggest problems that ppl,especially on here, critisise the emirates for is its lack of authentic support..the ppl who go home early etc etc…

    well look no further than the board for that issue

    everybody has there reasons but generally there too many tourists and not enough hardcore fans…the heart and soul has been ripped out of the club and it runs through the club like a virus..even the players dont give a shit anymore..

    since we moved to the emirates we needed 22000 more fans to fill it…but to keep filling it the baord spout aload of shite every year about buying top quality players and it never happens…

    to keep filling it we must win trophies but thats not happening either so the baord continue to spout the same shite…as time goes on the lies become unbearable and if the situation continues we will struggle to reach 45ooo in the stadium in a few years…i dont care what figures the club throws about as properganda, ppl, especially the ones who leave early and spend all game taking photos will not keep forking out high prices on a team that dont win anything….and a baord that keeps lying…when we first moved there the stadium was packed to the rafters and nobody left early..5 years on and the announcer is forced to lie about the attendance theres 100s of seats empty the entire its already happening..

    the biggest example of shite is that the baord said the highbury flats were ringfenced from the football side of things…but this is bollox..they have been using the profits from the club to finance the laon on the flats….not back into the team as originally promised…

    we maybe in 3rd and we may have moved to a new stadium without getting relegated and we may be self sufficient…

    but we are moving away from the word arsenal more and more every year and its all about money…the board treat the fans like customers and have done from the start and its gone too first they were just trying their luck and testing the waters but they realised they could get away with it and have kept doing it

    we may be called arsenal but we no longer have an ‘arsenal’ soul…if you understand what i mean..

    alot of the traditional fans can see it…which is why we are not happy…but alot of the global fans cannot..which isnt their fault its just the way it when we voice our concerns we expect not to be critisised on something that the global fans know nothing about…

  427. JonJon

    Seriously, you have some anger management issues to deal with.

    By losing your temper and making crass, unfounded and ill-judged statements, any lucid points you make are lost entirely.

    You have a problem with the globalisation of Arsenal support yet know that without it, the club cannot survive.

    You hate The Emirates but that is the stadium so frankly, get over it. You hate the board but do not have the financial backing to buy the club nor do you have any viable alternatives to the manner in which they have acted.

    You shoot off your rage in a machine gun effect hoping that you will hit your target yet end up missing every time.

    You berate Arsenal for losing its soul without acknowledging that the football society has changed. But the change is not recent, it started twenty five years ago. Football clubs lost their souls at the same time that society changed irreversibly in the 1980s. No-one said football is the better for it; society is certainly a lot worse.

    You say you are a traditional fan. Fine but you are stuck in a timewarp. Forget the fight for the club’s soul, the supporters are its soul. Do not presume you are ‘soul’ guardian.

    Do not come on here, provoke arguments and then bleat about a lack of respect. Respect is earned; the manner in which you treat others is the manner in which you will be treated.


  428. yogi,

    “Do not come on here, provoke arguments and then bleat about a lack of respect. Respect is earned; the manner in which you treat others is the manner in which you will be treated”

    some people on here will tell a person to fuck off if they don’t agree with them.


    opinions vary but the subject remains the same


    fuck spurs they’re shit and I would like united to win the league ( that hurts) because I especially hate them tramps chelsea, they above all teams make me sick to the stomach.

  429. John

    And invariably those who tell people to “Fuck Off” get told to do so themselves but they don’t bleat about it.


  430. Oh and BTW, do you really want United to be the first team to win 4 in a row? I don’t. Much as I dislike Chelsea, I hate United even more.


  431. yogi, I hate chelsea enough to stomach a 4th title in a row for utd.

    “And invariably those who tell people to “Fuck Off” get told to do so themselves but they don’t bleat about it”

    I think those are usually the one’s to start the fuck off’s.

  432. JonJon – in answer to your somewhat longwinded statement, here goes….yes the atmosphere in almost every ground has changed over the last 20 years or so(even Newcastle is not what it once was though it is still the standard by which to judge) but you are missing out on why. It is indeed the loss of the terraces that goes a long way towards the loss of atmosphere but that is not Arsenal’s board or managers fault. The big difference these days are safety regulations that came into effect after the tragedy of Hillsborough and other like tragedies. There is also the fact that with the clamp down on hooliganism(finally!!) stadiums are much more family friendly and that is why there are much more kids/family/ladies at the games than ever before. As Yogi rightly pointed out you are stuck in a timewarp. But it is a timewarp with blinkers as you also fail to realize that tickets are priced the way they are because the prices of players has gone through the roof!! Joleon Lescott for what? 18 million? 20 years ago you could have bought a PL team for that. Not a great 1 admittedly but you get my drift.

    Fact is we make approx.3million from gate receipts on match day and that alone (even though you claim its a rip off) is not enough to even pay our full years wages to both players and staff. But you still bitch about the global fans or tourists as you call them. Next time you are at the Emirates, take a good look around, and if you cannot appreciate it for what it is and for what the team/manager/board/global fans/London fans are trying to accomplish then leave and go to Tottenham or Chelsea were they are not afraid to spend like there is no tomorrow. 2 teams, one who’s manager ran a very decent EPL club into the ground and walked away with a smile on his face, the other who’s Captain screwed around with his Country’s teammates missus.

    Jesus man, what the hell are you complaining about?

  433. Have to say it will hurt regardless which ones win it, so I really do not care either way. Just please do not lose to Fulham!!!!!

    Actually it would in a really childish way be very funny if we did lose to Fulham and the Spuds failed to take advantage, Burnley scoring in the 93 minute!!! That would keep me smiling for the entire summer 🙂

  434. YW

    im sorry but your last was a load of crap..

    may i ask where my anger has come into play not one point have i lost my that statement is unfounded and ridiculous

    i have no problem with the global fan…my problem is when the global fan insults the older traditional fan and dismisses their opinion as misguided or foolish like they know better..i thought we had established that…’troll and doomer spring to mind…f@ck off and f@ck you spring to mind..

    yes football has changed but is that an excuse for the players that play for us to not give a toss they have shown..if thats your excuse then your head is in the sand mate…

    my problem with the emirates is that the atmosphere is crap, but then the board( and some of your regulars) moan about it..well that is globalisation as you say…so what are you all moaning about when you know what the problem is…your basically complaining about yourselves

    i know ive never been respected on here and i dont care one jott…its the blog world anyone can hide behind their keyboard and chat shit…which happens regular on here…but i never bleat i always come back and i dont lose any sleep…the only time ive raised issue is when i spend all day getting patronised and insulted and when i give it back im reprimanded by you..

    its a one way street on here..debate is unaccepted…the lemming culture is the norm but like i say earlier its only natural you defend your regulars

  435. and for the record i come on here as me..i dont switch emails i dont use aliases i dont try to be 4 or 5 ppl at once in a desperate attempt to ’cause trouble’..

    i dont run i dont hide i dont care…

    and also for the record one of your ‘regulars’ insulted my mother not so long ago just because he didnt agree with me but if thats the kind of attitude this blog advocates then its little wonder you attract so many arseholes on here…

    you all slag LG off to high heaven but believe me ive blogged on both sites and this is alot worse..

    fantastic articles..shit bloggers..

  436. We really need a cup final performance against Fulham this weekend to bring the curtains down on this season. We can then look forward to transfers during the summer break which will then shape the team for 2010/11 campaign.

    The last few performances have been weak and disappointing.

  437. JonJon

    Re-read your 11.59pm post and see if you think it is rational.

    Your posts are full of anatagonism from the off, looking to pick fights. And you are still bleating.


  438. John, when people come on here posting racist crap about our players and manager they are deservedly told to ‘fuck off’. That sort of behaviour is not tolerated or encouraged here as it is elsewhere.

    If you read all the comments you would have seen a few people engaging JJ and the like in ‘debate’, but you can’t debate with people who try to refute indisputable facts because it does not fit with their opinion. Opinion and conjecture even through constant repetition is not going to ‘win’ any debates. We are just Arsenal supporters of varying degrees shooting the breeze about something in which we share a common interest. It is arrogant in the extreme to think anything else is going on here.

  439. P.S. There are also a lot of non Arsenal fans who get their kicks from posting inflamatory comments on blogs to wind people up. Anyone who thinks people coming on here claiming to be season ticket holders for 60 years blah, blah, blah, and then start laying into the team, are always really what they seem is naive in the extreme. Real Arsenal supporters are easy to spot and are the only ones worth interacting with.

  440. Fuck off, John

  441. ^^^^^

  442. samui gooner

    can you please stop sending a.c.l.f blogs have had the same one for the last2 days about 10 times, as much as i like a.c.l.f I do not want to read the same story 10 times aaaaaaaaaaaaaaagggggggggghhhhhhhhhhhh

  443. Sorry, JonJon, I was not insulting your mother, though mine has been insulted several times on here.

    I was alluding to your parochial attitude by suggesting an extreme form of parochial behaviour…inbreeding. It was a half-hearted attempt to be sardonic. Half-hearted because I was getting bored to tears. There are so many important aspects to football to be fixed. Don’t pick on your own club!

    I have been disappointed with the support in the stadium on matchdays. But this season i think we have turned a corner. Perhaps becuase some of the poor behaviour has had an airing. Certainly not as many people are leaving early and more people are actually turning up. Singing is a bit patchy…but the wags of old seem to have disappeared from many clubs, perhaps with the demise of the terraces.

    Supporters have become disenfranchised from all aspects of football except coughing up and always were. But that is because we eat our own mothers….our clubs, rather than get out there and do battle with the cunts in charge.

    Pick on the Board all you want though. Possessing that sort of wealth makes them natural targets and why not?

  444. 10 times? I’m jealous, I’ve only had it 6 times!

    Looking into it.


  445. You speeding, YW? Great comments in the middle of the night…and then first thing in the morning.

    You have created a very entertaining blogsite. Thank you.

  446. 1 loose cannon

    Here we go the Spuds coming out of the wood work. Harry is manager of the Century and the the all the english team should go to the world cup. They are also buying Gerard. We’ll have to put up with this shit for a while now. Its a huge myth that Spuds deserve to finish 4th, Their spending is not far behind Man city, anything than finishing 4th is a failure considering the amonut of money they spent.
    We have to beat Fulham with style and shut them up about 3rd spot.

  447. I don’t have a problem with the Spuds being around. If we are good enough we will beat them, come higher than them, whatever. If not we won’t. But we are.

  448. It is far easier to mount a challenge over decades than it is to sustain the success. But they have taken that first step at last. Let’s see what they can do with it. I look forward to them singing ‘Ingerland’ when they play us. That will make them as parochial as JonJon.

  449. Oh Fuck off John.

  450. An article from The Gooner just popped up in my google news thing. The title was “Glad All Over”. Published in an Arsenal FANZINE, it’s by a guy who’s lost interest in Arsenal because of the way the club’s run and will now be a regular at Selhurst Park next season.

    Seriously, if people can’t derive any joy from Arsenal being one of Europe’s top clubs and would rather support other teams, then they should just stop claiming to be Gooners.

    So will they keep this writer on next season as their Selhurst Park correspondent? Because every Arsenal fan needs to know what’s going on down in Norwood.

  451. Been to Selhurst Park loads of times. Always half full…easy to get a ticket. No atmosphere. Simon Jordan was the guy who tried to get DD fired from the FA. Nobody wants the club now.

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