A summer of speculation

Bang F5 key… no response.. F5.. no response… agghhhh.. F5…Defoe ?!??? …. F5… WHO… WHO  ?!… F5…NO SIGNINGS YET !!!!!! F5… WTF IS WENGER DOING ??! F5.. WHERE IS WENGER ?!?!? I won’t be renewing my season ticket !!!!!

Familiar summer ? Well, this year is promised to be different. This year, Wenger is throwing caution to the wind. Whinging fans, internal pressure from the board perhaps, is going to see the arsenal cheque book in action. The fans from the dark side are pleased. Their least favourite players are set for the high jump, and a new generation of supposed “winners” will be arriving. Panaceas for all our ills over the last few years.

One of the “winners” under speculation is Gary Cahill. For him, high jump is apt. He won the most number of headers according to the OPTA stats last season. Another “winner” – Samba is mooted to be joining us. The armageddons are salivating with the knowledge that two of their chosen players, their annointed ones will be patrolling the back line. These won’t be Wenger signings as according to them, he’s been reading their favourite blog. The mere mention of Cahill and Samba rockets our chances from also rans to easy winners of next years premiership.

Now, casting my wary eye over the premiership goals conceded by Bolton and Blackburn last season, the table says 56 and 59 respectively. I couldn’t find out the statistics for set pieces. Of course, we assume these teams have conceded less than us from set pieces, as we’re the worse in the known universe, right ? And of course, Cahill and Samba can be excused as they play for weaker teams. Right ? Hmmmm

What then for Vermaelen, Djourou and Koscienly ? Some are already suggesting Djourou for DM. Call me pedantic.. but we don’t play DM, do we ? We play 4-3-3, or 4-2-1-3, 4-4-2 or 4-1-2-3. Or when it gets desperate – 0-1-9 ! The DM call is for an Incredible Hulk type figure who patrols in front of the back line. Vermaelen should switch to left back as the accusation is that Clichy is unreliable under pressure and is a bad crosser of the ball. Pardon me ? Is Clichy that bad ?! In the doomer dreamboat defensive line up, Samba and Cahill would be the meatheads at the back, Vermaelen at left back and Djourou at DM. All our problems solved. Next !

The protagonists for change are also happy that Denilson, their favourite scapegoat pin up boy, along with Squillachi, Eboue and Bendtner, are probably hailing taxis. Of course, the fact that Denilson only made 6 premiership starts last season is not mentioned. Eboue made of course, the high profile mistake in the Liverpool game. Bendtner criticism is that his assessment of himself being world class appears to be all mouth and no trousers. Or in the case of being caught outside a nightclub a couple of years ago, no trousers. I am personally really disappointed by his proclamations to leave. I thought we would have a player nearing his peak able to provide a good alternative when plan B was required,  using his height and power.

Who else for the chop ? Whispers are getting louder about Clichy being off to Roma. I am not convinced Rosicky is safe, as I don’t know if he provided enough potency last year. The hate mob also want Almunia out. Let’s see what Wenger decides.

The other arrivals ? Gervinho – looks a definite, Willian – the brazilian who plays for Shakhter Donesk – looks like offer has been received and declined. Oxlaide Chamberlain (great prospect, but won’t tip the balance next season) – reportedly coming on 1st July but then there is still competition from other suitors, Milosevic (swedish left back), Defoe (but not according to Redknapp) and possibly Eto – pie in the sky (150k+ a week in wages). Gordon Sorenson has also been once linked. According to one comment from our favourite blog, somebody to take Szczesny under his wing, and show him the ropes. Yeah.. right.

This is all very interesting stuff, but surely the core of our squad last year will and must not be discarded. Ivan Gazidis, at the AST meeting said, “We are not going to throw the baby out of the bathwater”. It seems to me that Szczesny, Fabianski, Sagna, Jenkinson, Djourou, Koscienly, Vermaelen, Gibbs, Song, Diaby, Nasri, Ramsey, Rosicky, Wilshere, Cesc, Nasri, Walcott, Arshavin, Chamakh and RVP will all be either starters or vital squad players next season, come rain or shine. Right now, Vela, Bendtner, Denilson, Squillachi, Clichy and Eboue are uncertainties to be at the club next season, although there has been nothing in the press about Squillachi  and Eboue, and no bids for Vela.

New players and competition is not unwelcome of course, as our cover in one or two areas last season was short, particularly in goal and in defence, and there is always the old chestnut of providing assists and goals in the absence of Cesc and VP. We may also have one or two youth players breaking into the squad next season as well – perhaps one of JET, Henderson, Lansbury, Bartley or Ignasi Miquel.

’til Tomorrow.


Posted on June 22, 2011, in Arsenal, Football, Premier League, Premiership, Soccer, Transfer Gossip and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 229 Comments.

  1. Bloody hell, I think I may be FIRST….. but then again as I’m typing this someone else has posted so I’m SECOND…….. but if another has posted as I type this then I’m THIRD………. shit sounds a bit like my Arsenal

  2. all these news about transfer are confusing, been off from the blogsphere for a while now… btw, fabregas is in my town today for a sponsor event, let me ask him if he moves to barca 🙂

    jakarta indonesia

  3. its a typical post on arsenal, i said the solution is not signing players its sacking AW, he has lost it, every one knows we won’t win nothing next year, so its not that important if we sign many players, wenger has lost his quality. Wenger out!

  4. mumbai gooner

    Bang on about F5 YW….I sincerely hope that at least 2 youth players prove themselves this year

  5. Can you imagine a best xi with Sorensen, Cahill, Samba, Defoe! £40m spent and a team competing with the likes of Spurs, Villa pool and everton….no thanks.
    I’d rather have Szczesny, TV, Kos and Chamak start!

  6. Here we go again….moaners on the prowl. Look out!

  7. @Robel
    You know nothing!


    Good post, and what I think you are trying to say is that we already have the basics to win trophies? I agree, but buying now, perhaps someone like Gervinho or Samba would add a psychological edge to the team. I think the current team would like this as well

    We were so close last season…. despite the CC and final league position. But (and it’s a big BUT) Wenger failed the team in January….. should have strengthened the side to enable a better way of rotating rather than relying on players who were knackered.

    Arsene has probably learned from this and is in the process of improving that element, also he is much more aware of the failings in defence on set pieces and the need to strengthen the attack.

    New GK……. not needed
    New CB…….. probably needed
    New DM…….. probably not needed but welcome
    New F/W…….needed to replace Bendtner and assist RVP and Chamakh

    That’s all, and Wenger will do this… absolutely sure!

  8. Looking at the “goals against” column for Bolton and Blackburn could be a red herring because one of them is a relegation contender while the other is mid table at best. They are bound to concede more goals than the top clubs, but they could still have a couple of good defenders in their team. Which brings us nicely to the point that defending is a team effort, good defenders will improve with better defenders around them, which is likely to happen with either of the two joining us and playing with Sagna, Vermaelen, Koscielny and probably Clichy. While there is room for doubting whether Samba and Cahill are the answers, the goals conceded column is probably a false trail to find the evidence.

  9. c’mon AW!…m tired of gossiping…..huhhh..

  10. Good post muppet and I agree on the likes of denilson and bendtner, how can you blame them, however I would like to see the left back position strengthend even though I have great respect for the way Clichy has handled himself and I know it was debated yesterday. I think we have the players and a bit of a tweak in the system to take the pressure off RVP would yeild dividends but that player has yet to arrive. Maybe Arshavins mate from Zenit (F5 again). Anyho keep up interesting guest posts….takes the pressure off Yogi presumably..

  11. Flint McCullough

    Good one Muppet, what will be will be !!!

    I believe I saw a stat informing us that while we had the worst record for defending set pieces, Bolton were next in line, which makes Cahill’s Opta heading performance somewhat surprising.

    We also apparently conceded the fewest goals from open play. The key is to improve on set pieces at both ends. Why for example don’t we operate some of Stoke’s goalkeeper burying tactics? They get away with it.

  12. bllllllllllllllllllllleh

    not much is needed i believe for a top arsenal team all we need is:
    1 CB- cahill 17m
    1 LB- baines (doubtful) 20m+
    1 DM- fellaini 15m
    1 ST-preferrably falcao although doubtful 26m
    gervinho will be coming which is good for the team’s depth but yeah i believe these imports although would cost a fair bit would win us some well overdue silverware and apart from the already 60m reported transfer funds im sure there will be some extra cash added from offloading the deadwood. and i also believe that fabregas and nasri will still be in the team.

  13. Who would of thought Wenger would of pulled this out the hat back in 1997. Theres still hope. http://arsenal.theoffside.com/files/2011/06/Overmars-Petit.jpg

  14. Sanity, blessed sanity.

    thanks muppet for bringing me upto date in the Arsenaless void that is crete.

  15. ths is a gud write up. Good display of what is on my mind.

  16. Good post but you have got to calm down,no one has signed anyone yet !!!! Have you not noticed the window is closed untill July 1st !!!!
    The under 21’s were announced presumably to quell speculation,some free transfers are announced but the players involved want paying for June.
    Man U have not announced the Ashley Young deal is completed,Chelsea and Spurs have announced nothing !!!!!
    Thats because the transfer window is officially closed,management and staff deserve holidays you know,just like the rest of society.

  17. Le Grave on tour

    This post sounds like the bitter rant of someone who doesnt want us to improve. Oh sorry, improve but only if we do not sign anyone and do so “the Arsene way”.

    Does the OP want Denilson to stay? The 150 times weve been blessed by his presence isnt enough for some or maybe its just the fact that he represents a lost argument to many.

    From telling everyone how good Senderos was to then praising Clichy as the next Carlos and reeling out the stats on Denilson, it must get tiring being so wrong so often.

    Wheres Yogi, lets hope tomorrows post is better than today.

  18. good post YW , but djourou should be a backup cb and vermalaen can play either dm or lb he plays think as lb for belgium either samba or cahill should come in and if clichy leaves baines , enrique or schmelzer of dortmund would be a great buy……

  19. What a load of tosh. Who wrote this – a seven year old?

  20. Aussie Gooner Dave

    Muppet you’re a star but you’re having a moist dream. For a start, we’ll be lucky to get one of either Samba and Cahill but I prey you’re right. I fancy TV5 at left back and whose going to rule out JD becoming a good DM. There’s no doubt he has genuine talent. All the other names mentioned would be most welcome but I believe our main hope is that our current players play to the level we know they’re capable of and 1 or 2 of the loan players step up. I’m dying to see if JET has the ability to become the next big thing. If this happens I know we’ll be contenders and take the title we should have won this year.

  21. So we should stick we with what we have, pray they don’t collapse again, and add a few of our reserves?

    Yup, that should do it 😉

  22. What about Frimpong, that lad was looking like a real prospect at DM until his bad injury. He is young English and very talented so lets hope he can do a Jack next season and push into the position he looked like he was going to do last year.

    Blimey, Arsenal with 3 Englishmen in the starting line-up? How will the press cope? If we bought Baines and Cahill as well the hacks would all have heart-attacks!

  23. Bloody hell! Can’t these clowns read?

  24. isnt that what you all said. you all want denilson, eboue, bentdner etc to leave. and you want to replace the subs with first teamers? Or are we changing our first 13 now. haters are confused.

    Good stuff Muppet. like you read my mind

  25. Think it’s going to be a slow day on ACLF so I’m off to the bar. Discuss with Frenchmen who they think will leave France for Angleterre this summer………..

  26. rily disappointed wit arsenal transfers 4 a while. Truth is most of these playas being linked wit us r nt beta than wat we hav. What we rily need is better defensive work as a team, any new signins should be quality players lyk shweinsteiger, thiago silva or benzema. At least one of them nd maybe anoda one of the normal links will do

  27. I mostly agree muppet. There is a reason Wenger constantly says that keeping this team together is the most important thing. We have the tools and a team now approaching it’s peak performance age, with an average age of 23. We were close last year and I feel the ups and downs will only stengthen the lads for the next campaign.

    As for transfers I don’t see anyone leaving, although there are a few I wouldn’t be surprised about if they did – such as Almunia and Denilson. I would be surprised if Bendtner went. Don’t see us bringing in anyone unless it’s a replacement, and I’d be fine with that.

    Interesting to think Almunia may stick around. If he does he certainly has balls.

  28. Markus – “we were close last year”? How? I’ve just looked at the table and it says we finished fourth. Is the table lying? Should I send an official complaint in to get the table amended?

    A 2:1 home defeat to villa or 4:4 against newcastle when we were 4:0 up – is that how you define “close to peak performance”?

  29. Markus – Bentdner has been quoted as saying he “100% wants to leave”, so it is a fair bet he will go.

    I expect him, Denilson, Almunia, Vela (maybe) will leave. Some new faces to freshen the squad up and we will be ready to go.

  30. GA, before any decision is made on how to progress one must first fully understand the problem (or at least understand it as much as possible) and why it happened. Whether we buy or internally promoted , if we haven’t grasped the problem, any action will be folly.

  31. We dont play a DM and thats why we will win f*** all.Song is a Headless chicken.Our back four gets no protection from the midfield.


    We were NOT close.3 teams finished above us.Did we finish 1 or 2 pts behind Man U?You are more deluded than Wenger

    Why do people like you ignore the only stat that counts.We finish fourth.No amount of excuses can cover that fact.My horse finished 4th in the Derby but my bookie wont pay me.Even though i said to him my horse came close!!!!

  32. Gadget – I agree 100% with that. You would hope that Arsene and the rest of the coaching staff have identified this by now though. Arsene himself has already stated that we are not good enough defensively, and the stats about set pieces speak from themselves.

  33. They groaners and whingers seeking to spend an outrageous fortune were correct when they wrote before the first Liverpool game that having little Jack in the team was a worry. I confess found myself gr*tting mine teeth at the prospect of a few rookie errors in those first weeks of the season. Against Liverpool he gives the ball away in a manner that would have made Fabregas blush. A crazy policy for any club, obviously D**Med to failure.

    Oh, how I wish le Gaffer had given his old mate up in Sunderland 20M BIG ONES(!!!!). And made a real statement of intent instead. Did I forget to mention Joe Cole? Hang on, was that last summer?
    I’m getting confused.

    Frimpong? Bring him on.

  34. Thomas – All very true.

  35. Finsbury – To be fair, not many people are asking for the club to spend stupid amounts of cash. People like Wilshere and Cesc are few and far between, not that many break through and make the grade at this level.

  36. Henry sending off for NY Red Bulls. I thought we had some dodgy refs.


    andy, where did that quote come from? If it is accurate then was it taken from a larger quote along the lines of “If I don’t get more playing time I’ll want a move”?

    Elliot, yes we were close. This young team is on a learning curve which I believe is not far from paying off.

  37. Great post, Muppet.

    “Thomas – All very true.”

    Do you even agree with the part about Song, GA? Song’s not to blame for the collapse; it was a team problem.

  38. Thomas, you’re “Song is a Headless chicken” statement means I’m not likely to read anything else you have to say, but just assume that I disagree with it anyway.

  39. Markus – I saw it the other day mate. It was on a few websites, and didn’t appear to be part of a longer statement.

  40. OOU – No, not the Song part. Although I do think he would be of more value to the team if he had a slightly more restricted role. I would not say he was a headless chicken though.

  41. Sadly you probably will read what that person says again, Markus; he uses a different username every time he comes on here.

    i think there were a few masterclass performances from Song, even amidst the dismal run of results, GA. I haven’t really made up my mind about what’s best for him – truth is we were far more potent earlier in the season when Song did make forward runs. Later on he stayed back a bit more, a move that did coincide with the team’s poor form, but he still put in some excellent shifts, especially the one against ManU when he completely shackled Rooney. Have to say I do like the idea of Song staying deep and freeing up Wilshere and Cesc to attack more, but he does add power to attacks when he does get forward. Tough one.

    Anyone seen Ebecilio play? Can’t wait to see how he develops – he anchors the Dutch midfield, but seems to be able to choose the perfect moment to stride forward. It makes him their best midfielder, both in attack and defence.

  42. OOU – Like you, I rate Song and think he is an excellent player. He scored a few important goals for us during a tough patch if I remember rightly. I just think that the way this team functions, we would be better off with sombody holding back a bit (not as much as the often praised Makalele I might add). Song currently is the most suited to carry out this role.

    Markus – The quotes are from his old man, but it does sound pretty definate.


  43. Indeed GA, but it would not surprise me in the least if Wenger’s musing upon the defence are tempered by the circumstance of season past, i.e. injury to Vermaelen. It would be quite interesting to say the least if there is actually some truth to these tranfer rumours of Cahill and Samba

    To my uncultured eye, the more pressing issue is the lack of goals from midfield. If this issue is not rectified and we continued to singularly rely upon RVP, another collapse may be happen. In truth it appeared to my mind’s eye that we sort of abandoned our possession game but as this is a proposition from memory I have no evidence to support such a claim. To put at ease an inquisitive mind, does anyone know our possession count for games post-Barca?

  44. I’m sure the arsenal board are now just bidding their time.

  45. Jabba's delights

    Not the best of posts but to be expected from you Muppet, you hate anyone who differs from what you think. You should probably go back and read Miami yesterday who gave a lesson in how to portray his own differing oppinion without annoying everyone who felt otherwise.

    Your comparisons of respective defences is completely schoolboy. We lack an organizer who can dominate physical tussles at the back. I couldnt care less where he came from, if he is that player he will in all probability improve us. We have some very good players at the back who lack a leader and someone who doesnt get bullied.

    1994-5 seria a Inter scored 39 goals and yet when we signed DB10 i didnt here people screaming how would he help our attack??? We have a desperate need and have done for years it needs to be filled. The only CB with prem experience who fit that need that we can afford who potentially have the required quality to play for us are Samba and Cahill it appears. We have 3 good cb’s but they have done nothing to alleviate our defesive woes. Its f^cking obvious to everyone bar you, george and a couple of others that we need something else.

    Fans are restless as we finished with 68 points last season which in nearlly every year wouldnt be good enough for cl football. Our rivals are strengthening we need to and this time it appears our board and manager have lsitened to the spectrum of pundits, fans rival managers who have said for years that arsenal cant defend set peices lack compsure when usder pressure and dont have much penertration against deep lying defensive teams.

    No more f^cking around, we have money, obvious needs and the one of the best paid managers in the world. Its criminal if we dont improve

  46. Muppet – many thanks for ‘very appropriate’ remarks.

    Speaking of transfer fee’s
    For $17 m pounds,
    You can reward 5-6 key players an extra $20,000 a week for 3 years.

    If were looking to bolster our midfield for an impact player that can do it all – Everton’s Fellaine.
    ( Height, speed, a work horse in attack/defense, in winning the 50/50 balls, Arsenal skill )

  47. And why are we not in for Hangaland? he is alot better then Samba n Cahil and if were going on the goals conceeded by their respetive clubs Fulham only conceeded… not alot(have not got thee sats and cant be arsed to look emn up). compared to Bolton n Blackburn.

  48. jabba, the post yesterday was the most poorly received I’ve seen on here in recent times. Does the post today annoy you because it casts doubt on potential signings? Cos if that’s the case then I feel you’ll be very annoyed come July.

    andy, his father talks shite, like all agents. Although he only says Bendtner would be open to a move. Think he has a year left so I suppose it’s up to Wenger to decide whether he will use him enough next year to lose out on a potential fee this summer.

    What about Wenger saying our defence isn’t good enough? You’ve stated that as fact a few times but I don’t remember him saying this recently (as in after the season kicked off).

  49. ‘To be fair, not many people are asking for the club to spend stupid amounts of cash. People like Wilshere and Cesc are few and far between’

    Yet both play for Arsenal Football Club,.
    Arsenal may not be spending stupid money, but they have some stupidly good players.
    Occasionly they go crazy and sign someone like Sagna or Nasri or whoever. Vermaelan. Koscielny.

  50. Gadget – Yeah, maybe. But if our main defender being injured derails our defence so badly that itself is a problem. For me, the most frsutrating thing is the manner of many of the goals we conceed. So many are down to indivdual errors, or are problems of our own making.

    You a right about goals from midfield though.

  51. Gadget – A valiant attempt to beat back the fickle, emotional, infantile (dare I say) majority whose response to the disappointments of last season is to literally throw away the baby with the bath-water. Ranging from the wild extremes of AIC, the snake, to the relentless pleadings by Bill to adopt to change our philosophy and be more Chelsea-like, there is one common theme; the self-sustaining youth-based policy has failed. Can we really conclude that the current squad has reached its full potential? After our melt-down post- March from challenging in all four competitions and falling to a 4th in the EPL , it is easy for some, to distort history, ignoring key differences between each year’s failure (injuries to key players, post- Eduardo setbacks etc) and not recognize that this squad, with some, enhancements is on the brink of greatness.
    Take the fact that in 2010-11 we were the youngest team in the EPL at an average of 25.9 years. All the teams above us were older (ManU – 27.3, Chelsea – 26.8, Man City – 26.7) Thanks to http://www.transfermarkt.co.uk/en/premier-league/startseite/wettbewerb_GB1.html. The absolute differences may seem minor but this is a league where, at the end of the day, small margins make significant differences. It should be noted that with the exception of ManU, all teams with an average age of 27 and over, languished in mid-table mediocrity and the oldest at 29, Birmingham City, was relegated at the death, as their legs gave away in the final two months after their Carling Cup triumph. Sweet irony.
    Is it that hard in this internet-age of fickle, emotional supporters and of scoundrels who need to drive traffic to their blogs to enhance their ego and their ad-based revenue, for the serious Arsenal fan to be patient and to ignore the ranting and raving to break-up this team for the likes of Samba and Cahill?

  52. Jabba – Yup.

  53. Jabba's delights


    Yesterday post actually sparked some really good debate. Some on here are worse than the le grove lot for their tollerance of others. Muppet whole post is their to spite people who dont agree with him, he has used his platform in a stupid way. He is always accused of never actually portraying a decent analysis of why he thinks what he thinks and the one time he has been given the chance to show why he isnt worried about anything he doesnt and just trys to make other people look stupid.

    If we are well into July and nothing has been done to alleviate our problems we are in real trouble. It f^cking obvious the earlier you get players to gel/sort out contracts-futures the tighter your squad will be. We have cl qualifiers and then the toughest start to a year in a decade, if we fail to hit the ground running the ill feeling at theemirates will be umbearable. We must act and act quickly

  54. We need to buy an English player, be it Cahill, Baines or even Barton because a section of the support want another “proven” Englishman in the club. Even though Arsenal is an international brand I do think we’ve got to placate the tribal gooners. It’s all rubbish really but when was life always reasonable?

  55. Jabba’s delights, aren’t you being a bit tough on Muppet ?

  56. Markus – I saw him say it in an interview. I don’t know why this suprises you, it is plain for everybody to see.

    He has said this type of thing a few times this season. Another example:


  57. Jabba's delights


    Maybe so, but his whole post is taking the piss out of a large section of arsenal supporters make no mistake about it. The amount of times he has been asked to portray why he thinks what he thinks and doesnt is not funny.

    Yogi gave him the perfect platform to describe why he isnt worried about next year and what he wants to happen this summer and how that would help make up the gap that we have to catch the Utd, Chels and Citeeh of this world let alone Barcelona.

    Have you noticed that all of those teams just mentioned are already making changes to try and improve significantly…………….why arent we when we have more catching up to do than any of them. None of our contract situations have been resolved and the further it goes on the less bargaining position we have. Our captain still wants to leave and is still looking for us to prove we arent a ”development team” and we still havent signed the cb or coach who can sort out our mid table defence nor the attackers who can help us improve on our attack that has fininshed in the top 2 for scoring once in 6 years. 3 weeks from pre season, the clock is most definetly ticking

  58. Jabba's delights


    Wenger has said for 2 seasons running that our defence hasnt been good enough

  59. Alex Ice Cream


    People aren’t disappointed just because of last season; it because of the last 6. Not only that, the non-deluded amongst us realised long ago that we are on the path to perpetual mediocrity. The star pupil – Cesc- realises this which is why he wants to move. Nasri has been stupid in what he has said but I don’t think its just greed with him – he doesn’t want to commit to a sinking ship.

    Let’s see if the club can actually sign some quality players who are old enough to get served in a pub and change the way we play so that its not so easy to defend against. Oh and some ability to defend will be good as well.

    I am not holding my breath.

  60. Intersting link to the former Uzbeki ambassadors blog yesterday.
    I couldn’t be Arsenalled to post it myself. We all know the background of the filthy manc supporting scum.
    That list of Jabba’s delights needs no addition.

  61. Jabba's delights


    Alex is right although i would suggest alot of gooners frustrations arent as long as 6 years. Last years collapse, followed on from the year before’s collapse which followed on from the year before’s collapse. At every stage we conceded to many goals from set pieces and general individual errors, we also have struggled to break teams down who defend deep and cluster the middle, these have been weakneses for 3 years and i havent even got started on mental strength which i thought would get better with experience but its got worse. Most of these players aged 23-24 have 150 games under their belts and 3-4 cl campaigns done with, they arent young they have the experience of players 2-3-4 years older than them.

    Our manager has money, he is onen of the best paid coaches in world football and yet our points totals show us getting worse not better.

    The league is going tobe incredibly hard next year, we can either look to tred water or we can show ambition and a real desire to win the league next year.

    This summer isnt the summer for inaction and yet the 2 players most heavily linked to us will both be on ANC duty…………….what the f^ck is going on?

    Every year we heer the same chat about looking for top quality players or taking my cheque book to the world cup and yet every year we watch as other teams do all they can to try and improve.

    The race for 4th this year is goign to be huge at this rate, i would suggest its cheaper to spend some money now than face the consequices of not making it……thats if we get there this year

  62. No jabba/andy, in that link he was talking about one week. And a poor week for the entire team it was. He has never said our defence is not good enough to win the title, just that in those three games we were frail.

    “We have conceded six goals this week and you can’t afford to concede six goals in three games in April and win the championship. Defensively we have been too frail.”

    If he thought the defence weren’t good enough he’d buy, but my feeling is that come the new season we will be going ahead with the defence we now have.

  63. Alex Ice Cream

    Unfortunately you are right. We are getting worse, not better – our pathetic performances in the run-in are proof of this as is our points total. This is despite the Prem was weak last season and there for the taking. A team that wins 2 out of 11 and loses a final to a team that was then relegated is not “close” and is not getting closer. In fact the opposite is happening. Those who think that we were close last season are either completely deluded or utterly brainless or both.

    As you say, the same old problems, the same spin from the manager and the same results.

  64. All – thanks for comments.

    Hi Jabba,

    I am not getting into trolling argument with you, so this is my last and only post to you.

    I did not write the post to wind up a vast section of arsenal fans. Doubt is cast on Cahill and Samba as being a combined defensive pair with Vermaelen for a few reasons. Firstly, I see no evidence that Cahill and Samba will cut it at the very highest level in the champions league, against the likes of Villa and Eto. If we sign one, then I can see the logic that we need a physical player suited for the rigours of the premiership. Secondly I see no evidence either that these two players will provide leadership. Thirdly, as for Vermaelen playing at left back – two things – he was the PFA player of the year the season before last playing at centre back, and will be the ONE who provides leadership. He was missed last season, if it didn’t escape your notice.

    As for YW – he didn’t give me any platform to write anything specific. He just asked me to write a post. So I did. You want me to explain what I really think. Well – it was there in the post. I think it’s a good thing that 19 or 20 players will be retained, and we are looking for cover in certain areas. I think it’s fair to say, from the rumours so far, that we are looking for a centre back, a left back, a defensive midfielder, a striker/winger. It looks like Gervinho is the winger, and the others are players like Samba/Cahill/Willian/Milosevic/Enrique/Willian. I welcome these changes and hope if they come in they will strengthen the squad.

    I don’t know what you are so upset about.

  65. Markus – I said I saw him say it in an interview. I am sure it will be out there somewhere, but I really can not be bothered to look for it. I am not childish enough to make it up to back up my argument (not that I am making one anyway). That fact that he said that is no great shakes really, everybody can see what our problem is, it is no secret. I don’t know why you seem so upset by it.

  66. Not upset, just mildly annoyed how quotes are taken out of context and false conclusions drawn.

    Or worse, like your made-up quote from Bendtner earlier.

  67. Sheesh, believe what ever makes you feel better mate. Carry on with your fingers in your ears.

  68. I believe if Arsenal signed Dennis Bergkamp to be part of the coaching staff……..most of the mental problems would be rectified.

    We already have the talent at the club, there only needs to be an injection of mentoriing from DB or similar stature player.

  69. Nice to see you back, Muppet. Love the humour, but I’m afriad you were outdone in the comedy department by this comment from Jabba’s delights | June 22, 2011 at 11:41 am.

    “So we should stick we with what we have, pray they don’t collapse again, and add a few of our reserves?
    Yup, that should do it”

    That is not what Muppet said. Unless Gervinho is one of our reserves? At least read the post properly before lapsing into sneering.

    @ Northbank
    Saying Arsene “should have” strengthened in January, but a player has to be available.

    @ gadget
    “before any decision is made on how to progress one must first fully understand the problem (or at least understand it as much as possible) and why it happened. Whether we buy or internally promoted , if we haven’t grasped the problem, any action will be folly.”

    Absolutely right. This is what Nasri thinks:
    “At some point, we so want to win our desire is so big that we rush things and make mistakes,” Nasri said. “But it is not because we are scared, but because we want to win so badly and we don’t think enough.

    “As a team, we all realise now what we need to do to win a trophy. We had everything to be champions, but if you look at it, every time we played to go top of the league, we never did.

    “In terms of talent, I feel we had the best squad of the whole league. We played the best football. We were the best team, even if Manchester United had a good season too.

    “We have improved so much. If the boss adds some good players, I really believe a trophy will be won.”

    His belief that they wanted it too much makes sense to me of what happened – it would explain both the cock-ups and the triumphs in big games. It would also explain why they did better away than at home, because they would put more pressure on themselves to put on a show at home. I was reminded of 400m legend Michael Johnson’s advice about the last third of a race – don’t try and run any faster; you’re already running as fast as you can.
    General point – “Our defendING” does not mean the same thing as “our defendERS”. Different problems, hence different solutions.

  70. How successful do you have to be, to be a great club.
    Obviously not top 4 for the last 20 years.
    Anyway it is a trick question, To be a great club you have to have silverware – except the emirates cup – proper silverware. Or you have to do whatever it is that you have not done last season.
    You also need some overpaid English players in your squad. Indeed, you need to have spent so much on your players generally that you are now in hock to the megalomaniac that owns you to the tune of at least 300 million. (or in ManUs case the bank and the chancer that owns them) Or you are obviously just plain shit and deserve all the crap any know nothing can chuck at you. I would love to watch that team, it would make it all so much more meaningful.

    So lets see those cheques fly. We are better than fourth and we deserve every vanity. Think about it, if we spent 300 or 400 million we could be owned by such a great man as Usmanov, we could get rid of a manager as bad Wenger every season (twice a season if we liked) and if players had a crap match or stint, or if we just did not like the cut of their jib, we would not have to sell them to Tottenham, we could let them sit on the bench, or loan them to Real Madrid. And then after we did all that I am sure we could challenge for the title in a meaningful way that would stink of a great club.

  71. Fun – My comment was not aimed at Muppet. See the comment above mine.

  72. Miami Arsenal

    Morning all, thanks for the post Muppet.

    I think it is fair to say everyone felt let down by last season. It is easy to conduct an immediate post mortum just to conclusions based on the season just had, but as mentioned this failure come the finish line is not new. It is a testament to Arsene that he has seen fit to give the players the benefit of the doubt, he has tried to coax them to be better with his support and encouragement. The issue is not that Arsenal are not talented enough to cope with winning a title, it is that Arsenal have a disturbing lack of fortitude in tricky situations. I personally get more nervous with us having a 1-0 or 2-1 lead at anytime during a game, but the last 5 minutes is dire. I have no perfect conclusion for the fragile nature of the Arsenal team last year, whether it spurns from a lack of leadership, team nerves or whatever. I do know that Arsenal’s soft under belly has become the running joke of the premier league.

    I do want to see 3-4 signings, not all of course are perhaps going to household names, but competition is good. The likes of Denilson and Bendter are surplus to requirements at the moment, neither good enough for regular starts. I think the jury is still out on Vela, he shows incredible promise at times but has never made the step up to 1st team regular.

    I really prefer Cahill over Samba, but I also like Sahko so I am not going to speculate on the comings and goings but I know there will be changes.

  73. Nice one Muppet, thanks mate. Whats even better about your post is that loads of doomers completely misunderstood it!

    And as for the twats on here slating Song, or “informing” us that we werent close coz we finished 4th, then, fuck off geniuses, or is it geniui?

  74. Miami Arsenal

    @ Fungunner, thanks for the quoted ‘sound bite’. I don’t think it was the only problem, it is to easy to label it as one problem, like Nasri did there. I have no doubt however, that Arsenal’s issues last term and those of the past are largely mental rather than physcial.

  75. See Bob. We’re all still here. Just letting the children play for now. Yesterday’s post was an anomaly. What people failed to recognize was that Usmanov, hardly ever came out to support Arsene or our youth project, or our financially stable model. The things we as a club stand up for. He is of the splash the cash kin. Obviously we do need to spend, but not the sort of spending I guess he will support. Anyone who doesn’t see the beauty of what Arsene is trying to achieve, and doesn’t support him, can go fuck himself. There lies his folly. As for hating him for who he is, well that is another issue, a petty one though to me, given how in this capitalist system, many of the people ‘with this much money’ have a tainted past to some extent.

  76. Better late than never:

    Does anyone DJ? The art of blending two dance tunes together isn’t simply about start two records at the same time, or starting tune B at the right moment. There are finer intricacies such as finding the beat, getting the bar, adjusting the pitch so the two songs are playing at the same speed.

    Sometimes you think you’ve got it right: the beats are matching, the snares aren’t clashing it sounds perfect, but then all of a sudden the tunes start to come out of synch. You go to adjust the pitches, and that just makes it worst leaving a cacophonous mess.

    Even if “the only stat that counts” shows you messed up that mix, you know you were close.

  77. Are there any Lyon players we want? I only ask as our good old ami Remi Garde is the new coach there.

  78. Gadget, I like that analogy! I DJ and know exactly what they feeling is like! 😀

  79. gadget – know exactly what you mean. keep trying to do an hour-hour and a half mix and get it all spot on and then make one wrong choice, or get a loop wrong and it sounds awful (or as you’ve stated, when one track comes out of sync). usually comes at the end when hard to concentrate to hard, and everything you do to rectify it makes it worse. ruins the whole thing in my opinion.

    but yes, great analogy

  80. Miami Arsenal

    lol, got no idea what you mean… but I’m old 🙂

  81. All this media and other speculation is getting on my nerves, and I am sure most of yours as well.

    We all know from the last 15 years that AW conducts his transfers in complete secrecy, for good reason.

    The chances are that none of the signings that we will see in the next few weeks were the ones that the media said were certs, or even speculated about.

    I think that AW has now got the message. 2009/10 ended in a collapse, because we had so many players injured. 2010/11 ended the same way, but with a full squad and it is there that the need to analyse and investigate lies.

    Is it psychological, or physical? We must surely know enough about AW that he can see what is right in front of his nose and that he will seek the solution, whether it is a matter of coaching or personel or, as is more likely, a combination of both. I doubt if he is one to duck a challneg, when what we have now represents the ultimate challenge that he, as a manager, can face.

    What is clear, however, is that it will be done behind closed doors and not in the public eye, because that is how he does things and how we should prefer things are done.

    We are all driving ourselves mad about this or that player to come, to go, to stay, yet we really do not know enough about any of them to really know what we are saying. What we may see, week in and week out on the pitch, will not be the full story.

    Let us have patience.

  82. Jabba's delights


    Wenger stated after the 2009-10 season that 41 goals was to many if you wanted to win the championship, most people took this to mean that he would need to sort out the defence and gk situations. We ended up conceding more goals this season with 2 of his 3 summer decisons being absolute complete disasters.

    1) keeping almunia in goal………….dreadful decision from le boss.
    2) Squilaci. was a squad player at Sevilla…..totally unsuited to the prem, awful signing
    3) Kosicellny. Cost 8-10m with 1 years experience in top flight football. Wasnt ready to start as was to small. Has shown immense quality at times but also awful dreadful weakneses as well maybe this is due to lack of experience……………..not a great signing if one considers we needed a cb who could contribute straight away, hence why he is looking for one with prem experience.

  83. Jabba

    I agree (look, I havent taken my medication yet!) about Almunia. That was a massive gamble to keep him as number 1. But I was at Blackburn away last season and he was immense, yet a few games later he had his gamus horiblis vs West Brom and all that good work was undone and the fans never forgave him. I was really surprised that we started the season with him in goal and I think that maybe IF fabianski hadnt have had a shocker in pre-season, then the older Pole might have been our top keeper and not Manuel. However, I do think we sould have tried to sign another older keeper when the Schwarzer deal went tits up. Someone like Friedel or Jussi Jaskelinen. But that never transpired nd its pointless rehashing hat old sit now, as we have quaity in that position now.

    As for Squillaci. Wha I think has happened here, (and this can apply to Koscienly too) is that he was overplayed and had to come in too soon. No way was he expected o play so mny games. That was due to the extent of TV’s injury, we were completely hamstrung on that one, nothing we could do there. And, although some have done their best to ignore it, Squillaci dod really well when he first came in. But I maintain, him and Koscielny were not expected to play so much last season nd their short comings were exposed due to hat fact.

    From a personal point of view, I would have rathered we didnt sign Koscielny and instead signed a premier league experienced CB. Thats not a sight on Kozzer as I feel he did really well an got better as the season went on and he will be excellent his season. I just felt it was a risk buying 2 CBs with no prem experience.

  84. Muppet:

    Interesting post. In your comment to Jabba you said you would welcome changes but we can’t add new players without some subtractions and as soon as we talk about subtracting anyone specific the whole tone changes and none of our current players is expendable. We say that we have the best squad in the league and the best defenders yet we are not nearly good enough defensively and despite our attacking ethos we are consistently outscored by teams the teams above us whom we say have less talent. Difficult to understand. Perhaps most important is the squad morale is at an all time low. Nasri’s quote in FunGunners comment said the same thing that every player has said “IF THE BOSS ADDS SOME GOOD PLAYERS, I really believe a trophy will be won.” RVP’s quote was even more dogmatic about the need for new players. Much as we love our current squad the implication is crystal clear that we will have to sacrifice some of them and make some significant additions this summer.

    Talent is both physical and mental. One is useless without the other. This core group of players has had mental issues for several years now. Come next Feb. what will stop the same voices in their heads that caused this years debacle? Some believe that last years collapse will make the players stronger. However, the evidence of the last several years is that each mental breakdown leads to more self doubt and makes things worse. How many times have we heard of teams or players that never live up to their potential. If we stand relatively pat this summer the probability is that the mental issues are only going to get worse.

    We can argue endlessly about how hard it will be to improve the technical quality of the squad by signing new players. I disagree, but will certainly admit that the point is debatable. What is not debatable is the fact that the squad needs a significant mental pick me up. They have all been begging for the addition of several new “good players”. I think the squad has got to see some significant changes this summer or they will come back with the attitude that “here we go again.” and that is a self fullfilling prophecy. On the other hand if we move several players and bring in 3 -4 good players that the squad and the fans can get excited then that can completely change the mentality of everyone involved. We have lots of money in the bank. It seems like such a no-brainer.

  85. Jabba's delights


    But the issue is our manager decisions impeded our challenge for a title. It wasnt the main reason by any stretch but his work in a crucial summer transfer window was poor at best teriible at worst.

    GK is about consistency, Almunia is alawys capable of having a great game his performance against Barca away this year was brilliant and i would suggest he is by far the best 3rd choice keeper in world football. He isnt good enough though to be first choice and wenger lack of ability at spotting this cost us.

    The cb situation was awful. Wenger has been in english football for 15 years he should know if a player can play right away or not. Injuries happen in sport and we must stop using them as an excuse. Wenger made a mistake to sign players who he didnt expect could handle the rigours of the toughest domestic league in world football.

    The fact that he was willing to part with 8-10m on kosicellny who was the ultimate gamble who as yet hasnt paid off yet seems unwilling to pay 12m for samba for 17m for cahill i find bizarre and worrying.

    Cheap options wont do this summer. Whether some bloggers on here choose to ignore it or not i dont care, there is a massive division in our great club at the moment and neither side of the fanbase is wrong. What is wrong is the board and manager and they are the ones who can sort this out as its not going to resolve itself. We must show ambition this summer to not only correct our weakneses but prove to some of our star players that we are club going in the right direction.

  86. Miami Arsenal

    Samba will be more than 12 mill. It is not about what his worth is it is about the fact that Blackburn don’t need to sell and Samba just signed a 5 year contract.

  87. I’m never really able to tell the difference in quality between most keepers. It seems to me all keepers are capable of a game saving performance from time to time, even those known to ‘regularly’ commit costly blunders e.g Paul Robinson, Green, Gomez, and to a lesser extent our on Almunia. (hopefully Fabianski is reformed).
    But is there really that much of a difference between Reina, Cech, VDS, Hart, Schezny, Freidel, Schwarzer, etc (apologies for spelling)?

  88. I mean, apart from their propensity to make mistakes, aren’t all keepers essentially good stoppers, especially at this level of football?

    I’m sure there are other factors such as calmness and quick thinking under pressure, but how to measure that? Is there any GK known to exhibit that quality more than others?

  89. Miami Arsenal

    Experience makes for the best keepers, the calm assurance they exude is the rudder that guides the ship. I have also found that if a team feels the last line of defense is weak they tend to try and compensate for it. I like Szczesny because if nothing else he is confident, even brash but most importantly he is actively talking during the game. The latter is essential, the keeper should be marshalling the defense.

    I never achieved the heights of EPL or full professional but I was paid a little for training expenses etc in England when I was there by a Non-League outfit. I also happen to have been a keeper.

    I really believe that Szczesny will be a top notch stopper in time.

  90. Jabba's delights


    I concur about Scezesny, but let us remember this guy was deemed 4th choice by wenger up until xmas and was incredibly close to leaving the club. I am now happy with the situation but that still doesnt make wenger decision to stick with Almunia last aug any better.

    He is young and will make errors and we must be patient with him but cant be tolerated is if his alleged arrogence doesnt let him improve his weakneses. His kicking was awful whilst at Brentford and hasnt impoved once ounce since then, it needs to be addressed, especially for a team who wants to play it up from the back

  91. Miami Arsenal

    ‘In April, Brentford manager Andy Scott said: “His performances suggest that he would not be out of place in the Championship or even the Premier League. It has reached the stage where when he lets in a goal we wonder why he hasn’t saved it”.’

    Jabba, I know he is not the finished article but he is extremely young for a keeper. I watch De Gea this year make a number of errors at times, but again he is young. Everyone is human, errors are going to happen, what you want is the best consistency you can get. He is brash and full of confidence, but lets not label him arrogant.

  92. Eh, how does that work, Jabba? If you want to play it out from the back then kicking is less important for a ‘keeper. Szczesny says his kicking improved while he was out at Brentford, but got worse again at Arsenal because he wan’t expected to boot it long as often – so he took it on himself to practice. That he even brought it up shows a heartening amount of self-awareness, wouldn’t you say.

    Experience is overrated somewhat, especially when you look at the careers of the very best, Most were internationals etc by their early-20s.

    They have a machine to test reflexes that I’ve seen, Henristic – it’s similar to one used for racquet sports. I’m sure they take into account things like reflexes, reach, acceleration and leap, but all that information is kept under wraps, and can only be known once a player is at the club.

  93. Miami Arsenal


    I believe he made 22 appearances last term, conceding 18 goals with 10 clean sheets in all competitions. It isn’t great but consider the agreed shambles our defense was last year when reviewing the stats.

  94. I would say one of the most important attributes for a keeper would be decision making. As has already been mentioned, most keepers at the top level should be good shot stoppers. It is the choices they make which will lead to consistancy, and therefore being a good keeper.

  95. Hi all. Muppet thanks for the post. Another day another dollar eh Donnigan?

  96. The defence was good enough last season. It was a whole team malaise that ended our hopes. That is the major issue for me. I was at games where the opposition just waltzed through our midfield as if ours had gone for a cup of tea. Blaming the defence (sure, set pieces, but again the whole team needs to work on that too) is too simplistic and an easy cop out. Djourou and Koscielny formed an amazing pairing, with Fabianski, then Szczesny behind them. IF we had Vermealen available, or Wenger knew he wouldnt come back, then another CB would have been signed (Samba said he ws close to signing. Again, in hindsight that should have come to fruition) and that would have eased the burden on Johan and Kos.

    And I m sorry, but Vermealen being out for the whole season is not an excuse mate.

  97. Having played in goal and at centre back, admittedly only at sunday league level, there is a mentality needed that keeps you on edge all the time during a game. Chezzers has this, he winds himself up and stays on that level throughout a game. Almunia didn’t have it, he loses concentration often during a game, Fabianski has it but not to the extent of chezzers. Tony Adams had it, Martin Keown had it, others, like Clichy, Squillaci, Eboue, don’t have it. It’s about psyching yourself up throughout a game and maintaining that mentality for 90 minutes.

    Just watch chezzers during a match, when the ball is in the opponents half and we are close to getting a goal, his concentration and pshychi is with the team at all times. This determines a great GK or CB from a mediocre player.

  98. What about positional sense GA?

    Hey William!

  99. Jabba's delights

    Miami / Oneofus

    I was on the Brentford blogs asking them about him and they all said he was brilliant but that his kicking was poor. I was one of the few who thought we had an internal solution last summer as i appreciate signing a quality keeper is hugely expensive. His distribution is his weakest attribute and most easily correctable, i want to see improvement on it. In the same way i want to see young Jack improving hsi right foot this year. If they are expected to be starters for a team playing for in the major comps and hoping to win them then they must play like that, age isnt a factor anymore.

    We cant make allowances for his age. He is either a supreme talent who is capable of stepping up to the plate of a major club or he is a youngster who isnt ready yet. Tough i know but it goes with what our cpatain says, are we a young talented team or a team that wants to challenge for honors. He must play at a level of our competitors.

  100. Sorry Miami but shambles? I think too many people have just bought int this idea that our defence was all over te place all season, when it wasnt. We had a long uneaten run where we hardly conceded a single goal. That aint a shambles. But as I said blaing the defence is the go to thing right now. I hope we sign another CB and I also hope the defence can be better, the whole team should defend nd be aware of their individual roles within that defensive setup. If that requires us to have a specific coach to drill that shit, then so be it.

    I aint saying the defence is awesme, but calling it shite or a shambles is bollocks. End of discussion.

  101. I’d be more than happy for Szczesny to be number one next season. And I am pretty sure thats what will happen.

  102. I’ve always liked that big lump Mahamadou Diarra. He is out of contract having finished a hort term eal at Monaco. He has had injury problems and he might not be mobile enough or us (really selling him here ant I?!) But what do others think about him as a potential signing?

    Look, I just dont want to be dragged into another bitch fight about the fucking defence again, thanks! 😀

  103. Miami Arsenal

    lol, Dex.

    I use shambles loosely because being up 4-0 and finishing 4-4 is a shambles. I understand that the Newcastle result is an extreme example but it does prove some what of a point. I use ‘Defense’, as a team term because it starts at the front, moves in to the midfield then challengers the defensive third. A team wins on the balance of the team, no one segment of the team was responsbile for the failings of last term.

  104. Miami Arsenal

    Did we win the “shots off the post” award last term?

  105. I hope we start the season with Woocash in goal although either one is a risk. We give Chezzer a free pass for mistakes because we all like him but in truth several of our regulars not named Bill have pointed out that he had some problems. Woocash was really good during the time he played and has a significant edge in experience. Next year is much to critical to the club and although debatable I think we will be in better hands with Fabianski as long as he has really exorcised the demons of his past. Chezzer is always there in case Fabianski falls apart.

  106. The Squillaci, Djourou partnership was more effective than the Djourou, Koscielny partnership last season. The stats are out there. Koscielny, however, improved as the season went along and he played very well against all the top teams including Barcelona. Anyone who says that either of those signings were bad is not very observant. Besides, both players would’ve had one season under their belt which could see them improve dramatically next season.

    Cahill and Samba are just not good enough. To buy them in order to add height for games against the likes of Bolton and Stoke is a waste of money in my opinion. They would add absolutely nothing to our CL campaign as we play short, continental teams. Imagining the likes of Samba or Cahill playing against Messi gives me cold sweats. By the way, we beat Stoke last season with one Sebastien Squillaci playing in defense in what was a very neat and somber defensive display. He scored the only goal as well. From a set piece, no less.

  107. Dexter i’m with you on our defense not being shite. Did our defense perform to the level we expected? No, not really.

    It is hard to say if a signing is the solution to our problems. I believe the problem is in the player’s heads. A squad doesn’t go from beating Manure to drawing against Blackburn without some serious mental issues.

  108. Jabba's delights


    Injuries happen in sport, some sports clubs use it to push them on others wallow in the misery of it. If Vermalan goes down 1st game this year, do we write off the season??

    No we should expect someone else to step up to the plate or the team to collectively share the burden of the loss. Let us remember we conceded 41 goals with him playing for a whole seaosn at the back.

    My NFL team the patriots are the complete opposite to Arsenal in everything that they do, they have a ”whose next man up”attitude to injuries and would never use them as an excuse. in 2008 they lost their star player Tom Brady in the 1st quarter in the 1st game of the seaosn to a sickening cruciate snap. Eceryone ouside the organization predicted a dismal season, they did nothignof the sort. A lad called Matt Cassel who haddnt started a game since high school 6 years before stepped up and led the team to a 11-5 season which is very very good in nfl terms.

    Injuries happen, winning teams move on losers cry about it

  109. Calling that 4-4 a shambles while ignoring the reasons why Newcastle were even in that game to begin with is, well, a shambles.

  110. Jabba's delights


    No offence mate but i coulfnt care less whether Cahill or Samba looks rubbish aginst Messi in the cl, play the others in that game. I care that we conceded 43 goals this year in the prem which is our bread and butter which we must do better in. I also care that we didnt win a cup this year due to 2 mistakes from cb for both goals and keeper for the last. I think Cahill would be a fantastic signing for us and would give our cb the depth and variety needed to sustain a proper challenge not a timid one like last year

  111. Miami Arsenal

    Gains, you blame don’t blame Arsenal for the result? I must have watched the wrong game, I’m sure it was th Arsenal team conceding the 4 goals? Did, we the butt end of some crap decisions that day? of course we did, but being 4-0 up we should have won the game at a canter.

    This idea that Arsenal are always the team persecuted needs to stop, all teams get crap decisions against them. There is no conspiracy, just excuses.

  112. Gainsbourg c’mon Squillachi doesn’t score goals you fool! He is a typical Wenger signing, remember?

    Also I agree with what you say at 4:44. Calling the 4-4 a shambles is a joke. Ever heard of deceiving the referee? Damn I don’t want to start arguing about who is a cheater and who isn’t because frankly, Arsenal is perfect. =)

  113. Jabba's delights


    Excuses excuses. Winners forget about adversity, losers wallow in it. Should one bad tackle lead to conceding 4 goals in 19 mins and dont forget their perfectly good disallowed goal as well. If your answer is yes you need to go and revise for some man the fuck up exams as thats pathetic. Utd would never allow that to happen as there manager would shoot himself rather than put out a team who would use an excuse after such a performance

  114. Miami Arsenal

    lol, William… get those Rose Tinted Glasses from Visionworks 🙂

  115. Miami Arsenal

    I still remember the Pires dive in the undefeated season 🙂

  116. @William at 4.41pm

    I agree totally, the problem is in their heads, not the way they play. Mentally this team is not ready to win a championshio or a carling cup.
    My biggest problem isn’t the team, but the backroom staff and I still can’t understand why Wenger has kept Pat Rice as his number two!
    For example, when The team are losing (when they shoudn’t be) Wenger has his head in his hands, behind him is Pat Rice, in his dark glasses, doing fuck all, just staring into space; bring in Keown or Viera to be on the sidelines to shout, encourage, be the 12th man to keep the morale high and to go for a win……….. I could fucking do that, I’d crucify any one who didn’t give 100% ort more, Pat Rice, just fucking accepts it;

  117. G69:

    Its easy to criticize others ideas but you never really add your own thoughts about what we should do.

    I know you think all of our individual players are superb. There can be no debate that if they are that good they have clearly underperformed as a team. Should we just stand pat or do you have any ideas about what we should do this summer?

  118. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yeiq0r9D3po go to the 1 minute mark. From then on I count 3 dives (including the one Barton did at the end to win that freekick) and a wonderstrike that is eerily similar to danny rose’s.

  119. Northbank:

    Even if the problem is in their heads it is just as much if not more of a problem then if it was in their legs. You don’t fix mental problems by doing the same thing again, you fix them by giving the players a solid reason to believe that the next time will be different.

  120. Jabba you would be praising Manure on an Arsenal blog.

    Northbank I agree with what you are saying. I am not claiming that I know everything that P Rice brings to the squad. I have seen times where Arsene is sitting there talking to P Rice while Patrice just nods in agreement. I probably wouldn’t hurt to have a big voice on the sidelines yelling “Go on lads!” or something of that nature.

  121. Bill they have all the reason to believe next time will be different. Does beating both of the CL finalists provide any support? How about the fact that we lead the Premier League for some period of time? Or the fact that we were only a game or two behind the leaders coming into the closing weeks of the season? Seems like some inspirational stuff to me.

  122. Jabba's delights


    Kosciellny was f^cking stupid for the pen what was he doing tackling a guy who had his back to goal. Players dive many teams think Chamack got away with murder this year but obvioulsy you wont take note of that. What about there perfectly good disallowed goal when Rosicky played on best. Swings and roundabouts. Teams with a wining mentality move on we dont and that comes from our manager giving excuses constantly and works its way through our team

  123. Jabba's delights


    Yes i was prasing man utd on an arsenal blog. It might make your judgements a little better if you were to look outside the world of arsenal at times and look how other clubs handle situations. Utd are a wonderful club with the greatest manager ever at the helm, i dont like them but i respect them. In an ‘awful’ year they won the league and lost in the cl final. Dont forget there net spend over the last 6-7 years isnt that much worse than us. They are also completely self sustained. Its ok to praise other teams mate even the spuds at times

  124. Jabba i’m not your mate, guy.

  125. william @ 5:08:

    Yeah right! The confidence those wins gave us certainly propelled us to great heights at the end of last season.

    Do you think we should just stand pat?

  126. Nope. I think that the foundation for our success has been laid, we need to build upon it and become champions.

  127. Jabba

    Of course injuries haqppen to teams, we have seen enough at Arsenal and usually i wouldsay that we should just gt on and cope with those injuries. Yet, with the vermealen injury it was a double blow as not only were wemissing our number 1 CB, we had Djouroul fresj from being a year out and having to play week in week out, so he was on a massive learning curve. We also had Koscielny, a raw relatively young player with no xperince of the top flight and in a new league/co8untry etc, again he was on a steep learning curve and the sam applies to SQuillaci, who came in as 4t choice, not expecting to feature much.

    Now, hat is one major factor in our defensive issus. End of discussion, move along dude! 😀

  128. No Bill, Szczesny does not get a free ride because we like him, he gets the benefit of the doubt because anyone with a semblance of football nous can see he is a fucking good keeper and will only get better.

  129. Very funny and very true about the F5 crowd YW. Maybe some of the Football Manager 2012 developers can give us some “insider” information about who we will sign?

  130. William @ 5:30:

    “Bill nice argument evasion there.” That was one of yours comments to me yesterday. Seems like you use the technique also.

    Like you said yesterday we enjoy talking about Arsenal. In the grand scheme of things its completely useless and none of us know the right answers, unfortunately at least up to this point neither do those who are supposed to know. Perhaps next year the team will figure it all out. Until then all this makes for interesting debate.

  131. Miami, I don’t remember too many defensive errors in the Newcastle game. Two non-penalties and a long range thumper did the damage that day.

    At the risk of sparking the ref bias debate again, that game wasn’t an anomaly. Just refereeing cock-up.

  132. I had this strange impression that being an Arsenal fan meant wearing rose tinted specs. I must have be misguided in that approach judging by some comments on here.

    Surely being a fan of a football club means you must be biased, if not then you are not really a fan are you.

  133. Man utd are a wonderful club….. that is the single most stupid thing anyone has ever said on this blog( and there has been some shite spoken over the years)but that tops everything..fukin unbeleivable jabba..you been on the drink.

  134. Whats up folks?

  135. I think Cesc must have had his head outside the plane window on the flight over. 🙂

  136. Bradys right foot

    Anybody got Kozzers and Cahils stats for last year, would be interesting to compare them.

  137. Nasir Jones-Nasri

    Fuck me this Jabbas Delights has got issues. Do you work? Or do you just post doom out about Arsenal all day? Seriously get a life you post way too much man. You really should get out more, you sound like a very boring individual. Go try new shit go eat new food go look at some different stuff get some fresh air. The level of sheer ignorance on display is alarming.

  138. Dupps:

    Your definition of “real fan” is certainly debatable.

    Our discussions on the blog has no real bearing on what actually happens so there is certainly no harm to you wearing rose colored glasses. The concern is wheather or not those who actually make the decisions for the club may be using the same ophthalmologist.

  139. Nasir Jones-Nasri

    The most sensible thing I’ve read from DukeG in a while. What a cunt. You’d never say that in public in front of some proper Arsenal heads. That type of stuff will get you stabbed in some parts.

    I hate the Internet sometimes.

  140. cant stand the ManU lovers on here. I say go forth and be fickle.

  141. Hey Paul. As you can see we are having another delightful discussion about the merits of Arsenal. Are they a top level club? Why is Manure so great? Who is Arsene accountable to?

    Jabba isn’t a fan he is an objective analyzer. He has great respect for Slur Alex, the manager who publically defends his players, even when said players cheat on their wives.

  142. @william at 5.505pm

    I really believe this is the problem, not the team. For fuck sake, if ypu were the manager….. team comes in at half time, down 1-0 or drawiing 1-1, you fucking shout at the players, you motivate, you say, “right you fucking wankers, get out there for the second half and you take these cunts apart” RVP does this, theo does that, djourou and Kos stop the attacks, blah blah blah, fucking simple.
    We need Keown or Viera or Bould to do that, not Pat Rice…. this is the most@important change Wenger could make…… not in the team as every fantasy arsenal manager thinks.

  143. Before anyone asks the question, YES I am a real Arsenal supporter……. just want a decent debate about how we can improve things and win silverware and stay solvent at the same time. Don’t want to be a Chelsea, Man City, Man U or Spuds……… win titles without spending millions!

  144. Nasir Jones-Nasri


  145. jjgsol | June 22, 2011 at 2:27 pm – Word.

    Nasir Jones-Nasri – the best name on here, and he’s got some sense.

    Jabba’s delight – pretty clearly not an arsenal fan, just here to talk trash and troll. but I still can’t resist refuting some of the stupidest of his statements:

    Re: Jabba’s delights | June 22, 2011 at 4:42 pm – if you had half a brain and understood either kind of football, you’d know that the Patriots and Arsenal are in fact similar, because both don’t follow the herd in buying expensive players (hyped free agents in the NFL, 26-30 year-olds under contract with “premier league experience” in the EPL) to satisfy media agendas.

    Jabba’s delights | June 22, 2011 at 3:01 pm “there is a massive division in our great club at the moment and neither side of the fanbase is wrong. What is wrong is the board and manager”

    What total BS. You’re entitled to your uninformed, knee-jerk opinion, but the fact of the matter is that Arsenal’s management (like that of Lyon, Udinese, and Lille) are highly regarded by their peers because they have a sustainable model that secures good results on the pitch while also keeping the club in the black for accounting purposes.

    On the off chance that he (plus Thomas, Elliot, stakks, bllllllllllllllllllllleh, robel and the rest of the whiners) actually likes Arsenal and is just misguided on how fans should behave, I’ll refer them to Nas and Jr. Gong’s “Friends” (http://ohhla.com/anonymous/nas/distant/friends.nas.txt)

    “Your real friend won’t run in war/
    Nah care what the cost is/
    You real friends are in for all the wins and the losses…”

  146. One of the greatest motivators of all time in English rugby was Will Carling. But his speeches didn’t include rantng and raving, they were quiet and to the point. Not everybody responds to the same type of motivation. Personally if anybody shouts or swears at me, the last thing it does is motivate me, rather I think why the **** should I do anything for this ********

  147. @John N

    Then you are not a team person….. perhaps you should play golf!

  148. Can people stop comparing us to small clubs just to try and make a point that we are overachieving? We really can’t be classed on the same level as Lyon, Udinese, Aston Villa, or Tottenham fucking Hotspurs.
    We are in the top 5 of almost every measure of judging ‘bigness’, except in terms of actual trophy count.We’ve got a big stadium that’s a cash cow, we’ve got a global fan base Bayern Munich can only dream of. We’ve got one of the most iconic managers of the modern game. We are a big club!!

  149. dupsffokcuf | June 22, 2011 at 6:19 pm

    LMAO……….Good one, you made me laugh dupsffokcuf. Thanks

  150. I agree with Frank

  151. @josef and @Nasri Jones_nasri

    Are you really Arsenal supporters, tell me, the Northbank backed on to what road? answer my question?

  152. To address Bill (who keeps asking “do you want to just stand pat?”) and Northbank1969 | June 22, 2011 at 7:39 pm,

    It is clear that some action(s) ought to be taken to move up from 3rd/4th towards 1st. In terms of transfers, I would not overly mourn the departures of Almunia or Bendtner; I like Denilson but Arsenal has tons of central midfielders. Another CB would not hurt, but I would not buy into this absurd “premier league experience” meme. Chicarito. David Silva. Kolo fucking Toure. Bacary Sagna. These are only a few of the many people who killed it in their first year in the EPL. Despite his blasphemy re: Spain, I like Rodwell (and Fellaini, as some have suggested, though him only if Nasri or Cesc leaves since we already have too many midfielders). But I think unless Arsene could get Subotic or Rodwell, the defense should remain as is. Promote Miquel (who is going to be phenomenal) above Squillaci, keep Clichy, bring TV back in paired with Djourou.

    The real problem, in my mind, is not the defensive part of the team, but rather the team defense. What would suit our team is to step up the pressing regime. In many games I watched, our pressing was half-hearted at best. I know RVP always plays his heart out, but people above quoting Nasri and Cesc talking about “we need to bring in new players” made me scoff; if those two pressed like Pedro and Iniesta do instead of making eyes at Arsenal’s rivals…

    Not that I’m upset with them, really. They are excellent players. But to be effective with a possession-based game a team needs to be in possession as much as possible. Guardiola pointed out that his team is far better with the ball than without, and thus they work abnormally hard to win it back. Arsenal need to adopt a similar policy – press hard, all the time. This fits because Arsenal is deep – they can rotate in their massive squad of kids a couple at a time to keep everyone fresh, and demand that everyone always play defense at full speed.

    This has the bonus effect of resulting in turnovers/steals/interceptions high up the field, which can help to make those packed defenses Arsenal always face an irrelevancy.

    So, Arsenal should not “stand pat”. They should call everyone in from vacation early and say, “here’s the plan, fellas: RVP closes down the CBs, the wingers press the fullbacks, the CAM closes down the deepest midfielder, and so on. We’re going to press all game, every game. To do this, we need to (1) practice and (2) get in better shape than ever. If anyone doesn’t want to work to win, tell us now and we’ll see about selling your lazy ass.”

  153. @Nasri jones Nasri at 6.49pm

    and what parts would you stab…………………

  154. Bill, you can fuck right off. You are the one that wants to buy, buy, buy but never provides any options. My options for next season at the back are Vermaelen, Koscielny, Djourou and Squillaci. And if the team wants to concede less from set pieces it is a matter of not giving away silly fouls in our half.

    Jabba, good for the New England patriots, but they didn’t win shit last year, did they? As I recall, from what very little of that shitty sport I watch, it was the Packers who won the NFL championship last season. Therefore your point is ridiculous.

    Miami, we were lucky to walk away from Newcastle with a 4-4 draw as the referee was doing his damndest to help them win the game. Diaby’s sending off was inconsistent as well. Barton should’ve gotten a red card also and later on Nolan wrestled down Szczesny and didn’t get red carded either. It’s easy to argue from the sidelines that the team should’ve done better but the truth is that you would’ve probably shit yourself in that situation and only dismiss the poor refereeing because you are far, far away from ever being put in the spot to produce at such a high level.

  155. Go for his face!

  156. Good post Josef,
    Now, kindly go let Arsene know of these great plan of yours!

  157. @josef at 8.45pm

    are you for real? ffs

  158. “Miami, we were lucky to walk away from Newcastle with a 4-4 draw as the referee was doing his damndest to help them win the game. ”

    The main flaw in this argument is that they had a perfectly good goal disallowed.

  159. No William, if you go for anything, you go for the neck and the jugular or the windpipe!

  160. Jabba: “Excuses excuses. Winners forget about adversity, losers wallow in it. Should one bad tackle lead to conceding 4 goals in 19 mins and dont forget their perfectly good disallowed goal as well. If your answer is yes you need to go and revise for some man the fuck up exams as thats pathetic. Utd would never allow that to happen as there manager would shoot himself rather than put out a team who would use an excuse after such a performance”

    Really? You’re coming at me with this man up shit? Who cries a little girl when someone reminds him that he can’t spell? Oh, I’m dyslexic, the excuses flow.

    No one is wallowing in excuses, but to sweep that poor display of refereeing is opportunistic at best and completely disloyal at worst.

    UTD wouldn’t have had to wallow in anything as our game at Newcastle would’ve never happened to them. In fact, Rooney got away with a blatant elbow to the face against Wigan and nothing happened to him. So man the fuck up or go watch NFL or Manure, you fucking idiot.

  161. Jabba is a different breed of Arsenal supporter william, he actually supports United. How he does it is quite an enigma.

  162. @Henristic | June 22, 2011 at 8:36 pm – This is the modern era, yo. teams that run on unsustainable debt will suffer long term, and teams with sensible business models with prosper long term. Lyon is just coming off 7 league championships in a row, so why a comparison to them would insult you is beyond me. And if you don’t like Udinese, I suggest you take a long walk off a short pier. The whole sense of “historically we’ve been big, so we should win now” is sooooooo abysmally stupid. What would you do it you were a Torino fan? They’ve got plenty of history, eh? This mentality reminds me of how english people think about their national team: “we invented football! surely we’ll win the next world cup!” is the cry, but in reality england already overachieves given its population and affluence, as I believe Kuper explains in detail. Similarly, given its financial resources, Arsenal does well. Sure, I’d love them to win every year, but if they don’t I’m not going to cry, scream, and demand that we fire/sell everyone.

    @Northbank1969 | June 22, 2011 at 8:43 pm – You found me out. I have no fucking clue. I’m from New York. Never seen Arsenal play in person.

    Always liked football, or soccer as we call it here, played since I was 5. Didn’t know much about the professional game (though I always watched the world cup) until I studied abroad in Prague in 2004. Got into the Champion’s league, liked Arsenal’s performance against Celta Vigo, rooted for them and was pissed about the Chelsea loss, but started following the EPL at the tail end of the season – was more taken by the CL then, and remain so.

    You can say I’m not a proper fan if you like. But I wasn’t born into Arsenal fandom; I chose it, because I liked the team then (as I like the team now), I like Wenger’s style, and I like their model. Teams like Chelsea, Madrid, Man U etc. with their NY-Yankees-style “we’ll just go out and buy our championships” attitude make me sick. And in general, I dislike people who think that booing or complaining is part of being a fan. Fans cheer. Cheers lift the players. Booing never helps performance; if you want your team to win, booing is never rational, and makes things all about you and your feelings rather than being about helping the team you claim to like.

    and anyone could have googled up the answer to your question, but I didn’t because that would be disingenuous.

  163. I forgot to add, if you assholes want to see the same type of poor refereeing next season keep up making excuses for referees like Mike Dean by giving shit to our players when they’ve clearly been wronged, you basket of wankers.

  164. Henristic – didn’t mean to come off upset with the take a long walk off a short pier bit, I just get riled over the “big” vs “small” team idea. And I posted a letter with this plan to Arsene the day of the season’s final match.

    Northbank, you don’t like my plan? what’s your alternative? go buy some big strapping english dudes to hoof the ball out of play?

  165. Josef:

    “If anyone doesn’t want to work to win, tell us now and we’ll see about selling your lazy ass.”

    Awesome. Virtual standing ovation for a little bit of fire and brimstone from our coaching staff.

    I would agree completely with your plan if we could somehow do it. I suspect that Arsene has done everything in his power to motivate the players before now. Fire breathing has not been part of his personality at least in public and I doubt he will suddenly change who he is. He has already indicated that he will not be adding anyone new to the coaching staff so I am not sure how or what he can do to suddenly light that sort of fire in these players, although I agree that if it could be done it would certainly solve a many of the current problems. In the meantime I still don’t understand reluctance to bring in new players since we have money available and there is no real financial risks in reasonable spending. No guarantee but it could help and it certainly can’t hurt.

  166. You are making some good arguments here Josef, especially about what a supporter is supposed to do.
    I think this is a primary element of a team, especially when dealing with younger players but many dont see that and dismiss it. The 12th man should be just that and it can and does make a difference in many matches.

  167. Henristic: The main flaw in this argument is that they had a perfectly good goal disallowed.

    Yes, but he let Barton and Nolan stay in the game while committing graver offenses than the man who got red craded. Further, that disallowed goal was more than made up for with soft penalties and free kicks galore, you obtuse moron.

  168. Nah Josef. I’m pretty sure Mr. Northbank has already stated what he wants the Arsenal to do. Twice today to be exact.

  169. Bill, who is reluctant to see players come in.

    The reluctance from what i have been reading is this idea that we have to match what the likes of United, Chelsea, Barca, RM and City do without regard to how our team is run.

    These teams dont impress me, not even Barcalona because they spend crap loads of money that the team did not make for the most part. I want to see them produce off of what the earn and lets see who comes out tops.

  170. Thanks Paul. You’re right about the heightened effect of this matter with respect to younger players.

  171. Josef, I agree with everything you said.

  172. @Josef at 9.18pm

    What plan was that? did you have a plan……. I don’t believe , strong, strapping english players will do the trick……………. where did I say that?

    I just don’t believe you are a Arsenal supporter, just on the wind up!

    prove me wrong or shut the fuck up!

  173. @ william | June 22, 2011 at 9:27 pm

    You’re right, he has, my bad. But he said it’s all about mentality and the backroom staff (which Rinaldi and Vialli would say is sooo typically english); if that’s the case, why doesn’t he like my plan? when you press and create turnovers and never let the other team breathe, it actually boosts confidence immensely.

    @ Paul N | June 22, 2011 at 9:27 pm Barca do spend tons of $ on players, it’s true. But you have to admire their talent conveyer belt, or at least I find it impressive.

  174. Josef, I dont deny the obvious talent that have come through but it comes off as if the whole Barca team came through their youth system.
    I have no issue with spening money if you have it and made it but when the government and banks are backing you and you get an unfair majority of the TV revenue, any credit you get should be with all of that in mind. Plain and simple, the Spanish system is corrupt in order to keep Barcelona and RM on top.

  175. Jabba: “He is young and will make errors and we must be patient with him but cant be tolerated is if his alleged arrogence doesnt let him improve his weakneses. His kicking was awful whilst at Brentford and hasnt impoved once ounce since then, it needs to be addressed, especially for a team who wants to play it up from the back”

    Do you blame your dyslexia for this bit of stupidity as well? Why would Szczesny need to imrove his kicking in order to play out from the back? I’m thinking you meant distribution, right? So while we’re on the topic of distribution and whether Szczesny’s has improved at it, I will point you to the game against Barcelona. In that game he did better than Van der Sar both distribution and kicking wise. Now go and fuck off with your manure mates and their best manager, you parasite.

  176. Nortbank, I cannot see where Josef is on a wind up. He has made some very good suggestions in my view and seems a proper supporter as far as I see supporters that is.

  177. Thank you William, you are a true gentleman………….. despite being American and not English LOL

  178. Josef: “Barca do spend tons of $ on players, it’s true. But you have to admire their talent conveyer belt, or at least I find it impressive.”

    Their talent conveyor belt must’ve hit a snag ever since Messi and Cesc came off it. They haven’t produced a starter from their academy ever since. Otherwise Bojan would be playing upfront instead of Villa and Giovani Dos Santos wouldn’t be wasting away at Spuds. Pedro is the only player to have stepped up but he’s not really a product of La Masia as he came to them when he was seventeen. He doesn’t have Barca DNA.

  179. See bob. We caught a Manchester united lover today. ha ha. Priceless.

  180. G69, isnt it funny how perception is totally different from reality.

  181. Gb69,

    There good cycle is coming to an end. Now time to spend more. Not giving time to Bojan, Jeffern, or others. Cant compete with messi and Villa. or Xavi and Iniesta. Probably they’ll have to sell good talent and take the risk, juast as they did with cesc. We caught two more of their players,

  182. @Josef at 9.27pm

    How do you “create turnovers”, would that be a “apple turnover” ?

    My idea about backroom staff being the 12th man isn’t english at all, it’s about motivating your team, it’s about having someone on the sidelines to give instruction and who can see how the game has developed from an objective view and who can then give guidance to the team. Wenger doesn’t do this, so he needs someone next to him who can………….. unfortunately, Pat Rice doesn’t do this. He needs to retire, he has been with Arsenal for practically all his life, great man, super defender in his day but now, just needs to go.

    For me, this would be the most significant change Wenger could make, not the Sambas, Cahills, Baines etc…………….. the team is basically ok…. just get someone in to motivate

  183. Northbank, your ideas about backroom staff are English. You know how I can tell? It’s because it’s an outdated idea like every other idea the English have had about football for the past two decades. For some reason the English believe that football should be played like it was played in the eighties and they can’t look any further beyond that. Look at the argument about tackling as an example.

    The shouty, aggressive manager is not suited for such a proffesional environment. Mourinho doesn’t shout at his players, Guardiola doesn’t shout at his players and Wenger doesn’t shout at his players. Even that drunk, red nosed bastard that Jabba wants to be BFF’s with learned his lesson when his two best players left (Ronaldo, Beckham) because of the shouting. You can shout at your players all you want but you can be just as effective by being quiet. In fact being quiet commands more respect than the loose cannon who shouts in order to make his point. You know who was really quiet? Rinus Michels was a quiet man and look at the impact he made at Barcelona. You know who wasn’t quiet? Van Gaal wasn’t a quiet man. He believes in shouting and although a good manager he is always getting fired.

  184. There are unconfirmed reports that Clichy has signed for PSG for £10 million.

  185. And get off Pat Rice’s back. He was part of the backroom staff when we went a whole season undefeated. So unless you’re at the trainning ground every day to assess his shoutiness I suggest you shut the fuck up.

  186. @Josef

    go on then, google up the answer and tell me what road………………………..

  187. @Gainsbourg69 at 10.30pm

    I don’t need to see Pat Rice behind the scenes on the training ground, I see him every week on the touchline……………… no passion, no motivation, no life, no will to win.

    I was watching him when he was a player, great, but now, he hasn’t got the passion. He needs to go, just tell me next game the Gunners play and you observe him on the touchline if he has passion or not….. thats all I ask G69

  188. Muppet,
    that would be good, but ‘unconfirmed’ says nothing, sorry mate.

  189. What people often forget in the 4-4 game against Newcastle. We scored the 5-4, and it was called off. A bit like with Spurs, where VP scored and it was called off for offside, even though it wasn’t.

  190. Northbank1969,

    Sorry about what ?

  191. See bob, we caught another Pyscho, all this time disguised as one of us. We should have caught him way back, when his jokes alphabetic manipulation of player names and diseases, became a drag. Something was wrong with the guy, had to be.

    “I don’t need to see Pat Rice behind the scenes on the training ground, I see him every week on the touchline……………… no passion, no motivation, no life, no will to win”

    Priceless fucking quote. Go fuck yourself. Take a bow before you leave.

  192. Muppet,

    Meaning he wouldn’t celebrate yet, till reports are confirmed. Any unconfirmed reports about Pat Rice leaving? That will be highly appreciated. We all know Arsene is a fool, and so is Pat Rice, they just don’t care about winning. What a twat?

    You got this one? I don’t wanna even engage him right now.

  193. Muppet:

    If true then Clichy deserves a huge debt of gratitude for all he has done and how he has conducted himself during this transfer saga. Class Act. He is certainly someone who gave his all running down the left flank. $10M would be a good return givent he other figures we have heard. Certainly go some way towards a replacement if the boss decides not to use TV5 on the left.

  194. Yes, I agree with you Bill.

    Ateeb – I get the drift. I think we need a doomer detox programme.

  195. Muppet
    sorry that the reports that Clichy has signed for PSG are unconfirmed! When it’s confirmed then perhaps it’s news. Where did you see it, in the Sun or the Daily Star?


    Actually YES, I do want to see some sort of English passion from the sidelines from Wenger and his staff…… imagine if you were a player for Arsenal, you are 4-0 up and the team you are playing start to come back, 4-1 then 4-2, ref makes a couple of dodgy decisions and before you know it, it’s 4-3.

    You look to the trainers and their heads are in their hands, heads down, not looking at you and you want to know what to do……………. where is the motivating trainer then?

    Actually, Mourinho and the others you’ve mentioned would be fucking screaming…………. Wenger is perhaps a quiet good motivater away from the match, but during the match he does nothing. He needs someone next to him, someone to look the players in the eye and say…………..; get on with it, you can do it , you can still win this!

    If this is a English way of playing football then I say, BRING IT ON, ITS WHAT THE ARSENAL NEED

  196. At 4-2 next time, how about not observing Pat Rice, and supporting the team from the stands? Ever thought of that?

  197. Northbank1969,

    The rumours are going around on Twitter. There are so many (about clichy), that it is bound to happen. He has been linked with interest from Liverpool, Roma and now PSG. It’s clear that he is definitely going, as there are also rumours that we have bid for Enrique (left back) and Varane (left back) – now going to Real Madrid. No smoke without a fire.

  198. Muppet,

    Clichy is 25 years old, almost near his peak. And he’s a brilliant player. Why would he decide to go join a small club like PSG, when he could be playing for a big club like Arsenal. It would be a stupid decision, if it came out to be true. But I doubt it. I think he will sign.

  199. @Ateeb

    Who asked for your fucking opinion………… if you were in the stands, I doubt it?

  200. Ateeb,

    I don’t know what to make of it to be honest. It could still all be BS. So many wind up merchants on Twitter. Untold Arsenal did a piece the other day where it revealed that his tackling/interceptions is peerless in the premiership. He has fantastic pace, and as you say, is near his peak. Is he agitating for a move ? It’s either that or Wenger has decided to move him on.

  201. Ateeb, Clichy is off, he would have signed by now. something has happened and he wants out. Rumours of Nasri intending to run down his contract or should i say try to are floating about aswell.

  202. @Ateeb

    I’ll take a bow, but will not be leaving, so learn to live with me…………………

  203. Clichy has been a loyal player for six years now, he has not won any silverware and perhaps, at his age, realises he needs to change teams to get something from his career, PSG wouldn4t be a bad move, they will be challenging for CL place and the French Championship next season…………….. no more of a risk than the Gunners.

  204. Come on Ateeb, you tell me what road was behind the Northbank? if you’re such a fucking supporter?

  205. Northbank,

    Cheap shots. But for argument’s sakes. Do you support the road behind the northbank or the club? If the latter, respect the manager and the people he has chosen to manage the players. I think rice is doing a brilliant job, as judged from the title challenge we put on. Go support your roads.

    Clichy isn’t going anywhere. I’d be surprised if he does. Just like Cesc has been going for 4 years? Nah. I doubt it.

  206. Ateeb

    Fucking says it all mate………… and before you say it, I am not your mate!

    Supporting the club also means knowing the club. and knowing the club means knowing the geography, because that is the history! so tell me; come on Cunt

    I do support the manager but personally I think he has got it wrong by keeping Pat Rice as his No2………..

    Its not a cheap shot, if you had ever been to Highbury you would know the road………… you are the psycho, and I am not one of us, I’m a Arsenal supporter, and Muppet, I’ve lost respect for any of your future posts because you take sides with some of your Muppet posters, unlike Yogi who stays fairly neutral!

  207. Northbank1969,

    I don’t take sides with my “Muppet” posters. I don’t know who they are. I do know Ateeb, and have done for a long time. He’s a class act.

    You on the other hand, I have never seen before. With respect to you losing respect over my future posts, I say this – I couldn’t give a shit. The point is that there are things to be debated. You want to debate them, you said so in your earlier post. I like your stance on where we are. It’s the same as mine and Ateebs. That is, we are not a million miles a way from winning trophies, and we need to push that little bit further to do so. Either a few players, a bit more leadership, a change in emphasis.

    I don’t see that getting into a rolling argument about whether Pat Rice and/or Wenger don’t display leadership on the touchline is helpful. You can be as convinced as you want that we lack leadership, but unless it can be substantiated with hard evidence, you are going to have criticism, just like I get. Then, there is no point in throwing your toys out of the pram just because there are objectors – you need to try to expand on your arguments and points. Ateeb is a f*cking intelligent guy, and if your arguments are shite he’s going to give you a good kicking. If the ball was on the other foot, you would do the same. Living in proximity of the Northbank isn’t going to make any difference. Ateeb is from Pakistan, but I can tell you this – he knows which way is up.

  208. @Muppet

    I don’t care how ‘intellegent’ you think Ateeb is, but he’s a prick! here is his quote:

    “See bob, we caught another psycho, all this time disguised as one opf us, we should have caught him way back, when his jokes alphabetic manipulation of player names and deseases became a drag, “Something was wrong with the guy, had to be”

    “priceless fucking quote, go fuck yourself”

    Muppet, you call that intellegent, he may live in Pakistan, he may know which way is up, but I’ve never said anything to him to warrent abuse like that, and it shows that he has held something against me since my very first posts on the blog, posts that were humourous and not meant to offend. Keep him as someone you think may be able to criticise, but for me, I can accept an objector, but really, how much does he know about the team……….. probably fuck all, so stop protecting him.

    I don’t need hard evidence about Pat Rice, as I’ve said, see him every week, in his dark glasses, sitting there behind Wenger, doing absolutely FA to motivate the team.
    So fuck your pakistani friend, for me he is not an Arsenal supporter, so hope I won’t have to deal with him again on here, Ateeb, never tell me to “go fuck myself again”, because I’m just as intellegent, if not probably more, so leave it out;

  209. I can see Gillespi Rd right now. Well, it’s a little dark tbh, but the old West Stand is looking rather lovely on this night. Had a great view of the the New Arsenal Stadium towards sunset driving down through Highgate earlier. Very nice.

    Oh. I agree with Ateeb.

  210. Nasir Jones-Nasri

    Hahah no one gives a fuck about your trivial nonsense, Northbank. Pat Rice’s duties at Arsenal are none of your fucking business. And the sooner you come to terms with the fact that Arsenal are worldwide the better. Stop being so petty.

  211. Northbank1969,

    Two things.

    Firstly, Ateeb doesn’t need my protection.

    Secondly, you may not need hard evidence, but we do. Making a claim that Pat Rice is worthless on an arsenal blog where by and large, people respect the club and who is running it, is going to be questioned. Did you ever hear the stories that Pat Rice had to be held back in the dressing room by Wenger from having a go at players. Do you know what Pat Rice says in the dressing room, on the training ground ? Why is it that Wenger went to great lengths to ensure he stayed on this year ?

    Shouting at players from the touchline ? I am sure Alex McCleish and Ian Holloway did a lot of that this season.

  212. Firstly, Finsbury, I hate to be pedantic, but it’s Gillespie Road.

    Secondly, Nasir Jones Nasri, what Pat Rice does IS my fucking business, the same as anyone who wants to see the likes of Denilson, Almunia, Eboue, Rosicky leave the club.

    Thirdly, Muppet, as an Arsenal supporter on a Arsenal blog, I think I have the right to put forward an opinion about the manager, his No 2, and anything else about the team. Without being told to “go fuck myself”

    Finally, yes, perhaps we do need the mentality of Mcleish/Holloway/Coyle/Pulis/Dalglish etc etc on the fucking touchline. Some of those teams fucking took the piss out of the Arsenal, Newcastle away, manager shouting at his players to get four goals in 15 minutes, Birmingham, fighting to get a win at wembley, Liverpool, getting a 1-1 draw in the last minute, Blackburn, Stoke, Spuds, 2-0 down, and winning 3-2…………… come on, the fucking evidence is there.

    We need something like that in the dressing room and on the touchline, and to be honest, I didn’t see anything like that last season………. so fucking wake up, no matter whether you are in Gillespie fucking road, fucking pakistan or fucking Milton Keynes.

  213. @finsbury

    Actually, unless you are quite rich, which I doubt, you live in Otley House Council accomodation in Gillespie Road, to be able to see what you are seeing? Do you live in Otley House?

  214. my testosterone senses are tingling, batman

  215. Hello Bill Turner (william) you’re not up late are you, cos in the states, about 8 hours behind us….

  216. hello. im sittin in class real high. what is keeping you
    up mr northbank?

  217. I remember you saying once that you were in Miami, I’m in France, it’s 03.30 on thursday, so you must be about 21.30 on Wednesday? Whats keeping me up is alcohol………….

    two questions, William, first, whats, sitting in class real high?
    Second, the debate about Pat Rice, genuine question, because others on here are looking at him through rose tinted glasses………… IMHO

  218. close enough im only 6 hrs back. i took some rips out of a pipe guardiola, now im sittin in class at the university. my laptop is going to run out of power soon, so goodnight mr northbank. (do you have another name or is mr northbank okay?)

  219. Ha Ha. I wasn’t in the mood to engage you. ANd wasn’t around.Taking my time off from ACLF. But that was a ridiculous comment directed at Rice. And sure your earlier posts were funny, so you should stick to them. I was adding humour to my earlier post. I usually agree with what you have to say, but that was just utter nonsense from your part. This whole ‘show’ of English passion to motivate the players. I think enough posters have already commented that isn’t a necessity nor can it be blamed for our failures. So frankly, without constructive criticism, you’re not going anywhere.

    As for this whole north bank crap, Arsenal is a global brand, I don’t even feel the need to explain that, to you. Common sense should help you out, if you had one. Google, globalization if you’re really out of touch with reality. Going to the stadium doesn’t make you a better fan, supporting the team and management on and off the pitch does, wherever you are does.

    You do appear to be a bit simple though.

    ‘Finally, yes, perhaps we do need the mentality of Mcleish/Holloway/Coyle/Pulis/Dalglish etc etc on the fucking touchline. Some of those teams fucking took the piss out of the Arsenal, Newcastle away, manager shouting at his players to get four goals in 15 minutes, Birmingham, fighting to get a win at wembley, Liverpool, getting a 1-1 draw in the last minute, Blackburn, Stoke, Spuds, 2-0 down, and winning 3-2…………… come on, the fucking evidence is there.”

    That’s to me nonsense, irrationality at it’s best. I doubt there is any correlation between a manager screaming and winning. If anything, all those teams that you used in your comment, weren’t the league leaders. Not in the top 4 either. So telling to fuck yourself wasn’t that unreasonable. It was for your own good. Might knock some sense into you, because clearly this post you are reading, wont.

    “how much does he know about the team……….. probably fuck all, so stop protecting him.”

    You do realize this applies to you as well? As for your observation skills at the stadium, I doubt you will give any intelligent insight to whats going on on the sidelines. So I recommend next season, pay attention to RVP as he will rip league apart, and leave the management to the people qualified.

  220. @william, actually mr northbank ain’t bad, I quite like it, but I think you’ve seen my website, so Chris is good.


    I’m glad you have agreed with what I’ve said in the past, hopefully, that will mean you can listen to reasoned arguement.
    Northbank for me is where I grew up, it was an important element in my development…………. just watch the film “Rise of a Footsoldier” and you will understand me. The Northbank in the late sixties , early seventies was the place to be!

    As for Pat Rice, I genuinely believe that he should go, no different to thinking that Rosicky or Denilson should go.

    The thing about a passionate element on the touchline isn’t so much to do about “englishness” but more to do with, well, PASSION……………. doesn’t have to be english passion, could be french passion, spanish passion, whatever, I’m not getting into a nationality debate with you Ateeb, just something I believe Arsenal players have lacked over the last couple of seasons.

    anyway, it is now late for me, and if you are in Pakistan, then it’s probably time for you to get up and go to work. It’s now 4am here so nearly time for bed for me.

    at the end of the day, we are arsenal supporters, but with different viewpoints………..

  221. I pursue my passions without screaming and shouting. And every place was a place to be in the late 60s and 70s. Anyways. Forget it. Time to sleep.

  222. Jabba @ 5:12pm

    “Utd are a wonderful club with the greatest manager ever at the helm…”

    Being a fan means loving your team. A fan might show a rival grudging respect, or reculatantly acknowledge a job well done, but this comment goes too far for me to ever consider you a gooner.

    I hope you understand this.


  223. Ateeb

    I didn’t scream and shout, and at the moment I am probably talking to myself but what the fuck.
    You really don’t understand about football in the sixties and seventies.

    I will tell you what I used to do, when Arsenal played at home, I would be on the Northbank, if they played away and I could afford to go, then I would have been on the KOP, the Stretford End, etc. If I couldn’t afford to go to away games then Millwall were my second team and generally, when Arsenal were away, Millwall were playing at the Den. Me and my mates went to the Den just for fights, nothing to do with football…….. although occasionally Millwall won LOL.

    So my passion is for the Arsenal, all my life, I talk abouit Arsenal with my heart and occasionally that influences how I respond to people. This is how football has affected me and how Arsenal has been my life.
    When I talk about changes at the club I do so from my deep love for the team, the club, the manager and the supporters.

    Do you understand this, I sincerely hope so! So, from now on, when I post a comment on ACLF you will understand where I am comming from.
    Finsbury, hope you are reading this as well, from your council flat in Gillespie Road;

    Need to stop talking to myself now LOL

  224. Southbank9691

    Northbank, I find it hard to take your claim of supporting the club since the 1970s seriously, if only for the fact that a man in his 40s-50s would be expected to have more maturity than a fool such as yourself.

    You are either lying or a horribly overgrown child. I hope for your sake that you are lying.

  225. lol, Muppet. have some respect, will you!

  226. Ateeb | June 23, 2011 at 3:05 am

    “I pursue my passions without screaming and shouting.”

    Its a good thing you don’t go to games eh? Its not as if we don’t have enough ‘quiet-passion’ fans already at the emirates. 🙂

  227. “Former Arsenal midfielder Rémi Garde appointed coach of Lyon.”

    I know he wasn’t a prominent member of that double winning team but he was one of Wenger’s first buys so I wish him all the best and hope he succeeds!

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