Guess Who? The Old And The New Bring A Force That’s Good Together

Reports this morning attribute quotes to Peter Hill-Wood regarding Arsène’s future at the club. Showing a lack of ego and imagination, he said

For him to stay longer than that would be perfect. I can’t think of ­anybody better to run the team.

Surely you can, Mr Chairman? There are millions who think that they can carry out the managerial duties far better than the incumbent. And let’s be honest, what sort of football fan are you, Mr Chairman, if you don’t believe YOU should be running the team. Come to think of it, this merely highlights how out of touch with your peer group you really are since a high proportion of them are quite happy to sack managers who fail to acquiesce to their tactical solutions.
There is no surprise in the board’s support for the manager, it is typified by the thrust of his observations,

And he has shown how much rubbish people were talking earlier this season. We had a terrible run of ­injuries and that obviously had an effect. But a few mindless ­people were saying that he had to go, that Arsene was past his sell-by date. He has shown that is nonsense.

The media have been backtracking in recent weeks over this point. Two months ago, those journalists who stuck their heads over the parapet were brazenly reflecting that the criticism of the manager which manifested at the Manchester United defeat in January, reflected the views of Arsenal supporters. Taken to task over such observations, this representation is now the manifestation of “some” Arsenal fans. As Arsène himself noted, “The dynamic is completely different“.

They fail to grasp the concept that online views are more vehement that those expressed face-to-face. Had they noted that the vast majority supported the manager but viewed last summer’s transfer activity – or the timing of it at the least – was, we’ll be polite, a bit of a balls-up, then threre could be little argument that this was the truth. Even then it is to degrees. Panic buying is a common theme; that suggests the players were ill-conceived in their purchase but third place is hardly a failure given the start to the season and if that is confirmed, represents a better achievement than 2010-11. There is, of course,  Chu-young Park to contend with…

Those lessons seem to have been taken on-board with the (unconfirmed) signing of Lukasz Podolski a step in the right direction in timing at least. The playing bit? History will be the judge of that. The approaching summer activity is being guided by tournament Hell, Euro2012 at the beginning followed by the Olympics at the end. Fortunately in 2016, there is scant chance of TeamGB to (potentially) wreak havoc with pre-season preparations with this year’s debacle unlikely to be repeated.

Even the manager has his attention drawn to the matter of summer recruitment. Sol Campbell’s ill-judged comments – which in the former player’s defence – echo comments he made not so long ago; he is consistent in his output but they brought an unusually ascerbic response from the manager; a nerve has clearly been touched. Too often in summer months, a player’s potential value to the team is judged by the size of his transfer fee rather than his actual ability.

What has not changed at all is our policy that we will be as ambitious as ever and spend the money we have available, if possible in an intelligent and wise way.

A quiet and unannounced change was made with experience taken ahead of youth last time around. Rather than being a wholesale shift in policy and one presumed to be continuing, it should be viewed as being the assessment of the squad requirements. This summer I would see little surprise in the balance being redressed with experience and youth acquired in equal measure. The two are not mutually exclusive despite being disparaged either side of the argument.

The key to this is to make the ‘transition’ stage of the group a continuing and seamless cycle; one that perpetuates through the balance of signings and youth development. To me that is the balance that the current squad has – and to a very large extent, I exclude those who are out on loan since for the most part, I do not expect them to play for Arsenal again. It is the process that will underpin his desire for a trophy that recognises the ‘depth‘ of the squad as the manager liked to call it.

It is the balance the manager has been trying to work toward and is reaching. No ‘project’ of this nature is ever completed but there should not a requirement for wholesale changes again. That’s the utopian ideal at least.

Final thoughts this morning turn to the family of Livorno player, Piermario Morosini, who tragically passed away, having suffered cardiac arrest in the 31st minute of  his club’s match at Pescara, and to Trevor Francis in his recovery from a heart attack recently. Such things put life into perspective for differing reasons.

’til Tomorrow.

Posted on April 15, 2012, in Arsenal, Football, Premier League, Soccer, Transfer Gossip and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 207 Comments.

  1. “Recently the atmosphere at our home games has been absolutely amazing – the team can feel it and it is a big help for us,” he told the Official Arsenal Magazine.

    “It is a great feeling to have the supporters so passionately behind you for the whole 90 minutes.

    “The supporters really do make a difference at Emirates Stadium and we’re hoping that we can keep that connection by winning more games.”

  2. bananas,as Frank reminds us.
    On twitter last night i reached the conclusion that(in my infinite wisdom of course)I would be ecstatic with Vertonghen. Christian and Podolski But Christian and Podolski would be superb.

    Now if Arsene would just match my ambitions for once………………………….

  3. you speak pretty confideantly of the Podolski everyitme Yogi. Good post, by the way!

    And yes, FIRST 😀

  4. mj_gunner,
    You forgot to say “first”

  5. garrett callanan

    great post yoggi

  6. Sorry, a repost from the end of yesterday’s post/topic. – I haven’t read many comments but I don’t know why bias has to be a consideration.
    There’ be been many thoughts expressed here on video. And as discussed before retrospective actions with a bit of goal line stuff would be great for the reasons given by AA above.
    Put it this way- the speed of the game has increased by 20% in the past five years (whatever that means) at the top level (source was ‘the news’- prozone?) So if you were to be teleported into the middle of a game being watched by millions and you found yourself wearing the refs shirt would you want to guess which player the ball touched last (impossible to see, they were both facing the goal line covering the ball) or would it be nice to simply get a right call? No harm done, no distortion of the ‘game’. What would make you geel better as the ref? At the end of the day I agree with AFC who’ve been offering to trial stuff out in pre-season. Give it a go. See what happens.
    When I first mentioned video tech/assistance here not many were keen. ( please remember, apparently you’re not allowed to disagree on YW’s forum on aclf!) It was nice to hear such articulate explanations as to why and how it could work this past week, the arseblog arsecast was very good.

  7. I agree with Finsbury,but I refuse to listen to the Arsecast .So can you paraphrase?

  8. The Real Stew Black

    I refuse to read paraphrased accounts of Arsecast – come on George you’re weakening.
    Thanks YW for another offering, how you keep it up day after day is a mystery to me. To paraphrase my wife.

  9. Good post Yogi, especially the last paragraph-very human-summat we forget, sometimes in our love of the beautiful game,

  10. George-
    They expressed the thought that up and down the land the FA didn’t seem to have much respect for their competency.
    And that idiot proof assistance for the refs has to be a good thing. Even if it’s just retrospective action, dealing with excessive violence and cheating only.
    It is hard to disagree.

  11. *sobs* I only mentioned the arsecast as a couple of years ago it seemed like there were not many takers for the idea of assisting the refs!

  12. Finsbury

    What the fuck does that mean:

    >please remember, apparently you’re not allowed to disagree on YW’s forum on aclf

  13. YW.
    Sorry I get confused.
    I read a lot of stuff this winter about how people are not allowed to disagree with each other on your forum because other posters heckle them. But then I remember old discussions that have been held here. That old thread on video I refer to was an example of one person asking a question and then getting some responses. Which was nice.

  14. Great post YW

  15. Limestonegunner

    Excellent and balanced post, YW.

    I don’t think there is much backtracking at all on Arsrnal in the media, comparatively. Hardly amy attention to us despite a remarkable season coming back from a terrible start.

  16. I’m sorry could someone explain to me how Sol’s comments were ill-judged?

  17. I love Yogi: “What the fuck does that mean:

    >please remember, apparently you’re not allowed to disagree on YW’s forum on aclf”

    Best blog by a country mile to paraphrae Frank

    YW is right, very right. FIFA, the various FAs, including the corrupt cunts in my home country, only want technology they can control. The best example of technology being hijacked by those in power is the internet. What was supposed to be that great nirvana of perfect democracy and freedom is slowly and quietly being taken over by corporations seeking to monetize our personal with the acquiescence of the government who slowly but surely is collecting every bloody bit of personal information about almost every citizen.

    YW is right; the media and the blogs were the vilest critics of Arsene Wenger. (One more reason I don’t listen to Arsecast.) He was old and out of touch and had to go. Thank heavens for ACLF where despite the Sugas and that other idiots, we stood behind the greatest football manager in the world.

  18. im not suprised PHW is making those comments..
    wenger seemed to have ran out of ideas the summer was hard to take..i was even considering naming the stadium after him and letting him step down becuase last summer seemed to affect him..

    but what we witnessed is a ruthless wenger who finally told players it was over and he rebuilt the squad..the first few months was squeeky bum as went thru the transition but we have to admit that the new squad is fucking good..

    we are 3rd..and we are showing excellent end of season form under pressure..

    and if we would have had a settled team at the start of last season we wouldnt have given UTD a 15point start ..

    wengers got the backing of everyone for next season and if we can finish off third and get those players in nice and early we can start next year off with a bang..

    if they offered him an extention right now and he signed it i would be ok with that..
    hes the man for the job..

  19. if we get third people cant even say its by default..
    we’d have beaten all the teams around us and gone on 5 game win streaks at various stages of the season..

    the reason why wenger got manager of the month is becuase that NLD was a PL classic.
    nobody can say we dont deserve to be where we are when we have beaten practically everyone bar UTD and we have spanked chelsea and spuds for 5 goals..

    we got beat up UTD this year but we recovered and took it out on both chelsea and spurs and its hampered them massively.. man city got a pasting off us as well..

    we are close now, doesnt everyone agree??

    they all need to stay together now, rvp, theo, wenger, rice?
    all of them..apart from the ones who dont play.. 😉
    replace them, which we seem to be doing..??

    excellent..trophies before the sponserships are renewed..
    you’ll get you money back soon stan, just keep this lot together for now.. 😉

  20. i echo your comments on morosini and francis espicially francis who whenever is commentating on or talking about arsenal very rarely or never has anything bad to say.

  21. “CP | April 15, 2012 at 11:33 am
    I’m sorry could someone explain to me how Sol’s comments were ill-judged?”

    No we cant,because you are to stupid.

    YW, you are a little touchy if disagreed with.
    Shotta.A country mile plus a distance if you ask me.

  22. The Real Stew Black

    “espicially francis who whenever is commentating on or talking about arsenal very rarely or never has anything bad to say.”
    Looks like not everyone will be in agreement today! I find this statement contradicts my personal experience.

  23. pedantic george

    Me too Stew.Still I still wish him the very best.

  24. Although I dont necessarily wish him ill fortnue, but Trevor Francis has always been contemptuous and spite filled when ever he has commented on Arsenal games.

  25. “Recently, one of the journalists asked me whether I have bigger ambitions than playing for the third place in the Premier League with Arsenal. God, sure I have! I look at the table and realise that is our maximum this year.

    “It is seven years since Arsenal won something and it won’t change this season. But the next one? Who knows?

    “I stand in front of a mirror and say to myself: ‘Damn, I’m interested in winning trophies only with Arsenal.’

    “I want to be part of the team that show fans the bad times are over. I won’t leave until we achieve this.”

  26. Limestonegunner

    And who said that, Dex?

  27. pedantic george

    Yes fucking hell Dex.Cough up a name

  28. Just thought I’d leave that hanging there for a bit…. Now who was it again? Hmmmm

  29. It was the one and only of course.


  30. pedantic george

    Well I hope RVP and Song were in earshot when he said it.

  31. @george rodger (@Blackburngeorge) | April 15, 2012 at 10:14 am
    “I would be ecstatic with Vertonghen. Christian and Podolski But Christian and Podolski would be superb.”
    Christian Who? Or should that be, Which Christian? Someone to be thrown to the lions?

  32. Yes george, which fucking christian???

  33. Trevor Francis – I’ve never had a problem with his comments about Arsenal. Has given credit where it’s due, I think. Similarly, much to my astonishment, with G Neville.

    *** steps back to avoid the bullets ***

  34. JJ

    To continue from yesterday. GG got caught taking a bung, when it was pretty much common practice by alot of the managers. Taking a slice of transfer fees was seen as one of the fringe benefits, especially when the wages weren’t as astronomical as they are now in the top flight.

    But, I don’t get what that has to do with what the original point was? And your contention that there can’t be corruption in our game, yet admit that the very top of the game is bent as fuck! I read a book about Blatter and his mates dodgy deals. Old Twitchy McBung could only dream of getting his snout in that golden trough.

  35. Kaka – “I belong to Jesus” ?

  36. Thats who I thought he meant duke.


    He has been disparaging on numerous occasions, he also came across very bitter. It was almost personal the vehemence man. You should be grateful for not having suffered it.

    Gary neville’s a bleedin intellectual collosus in comparison.

  37. One of these guys?

  38. pedantic george

    Dexter did you mean”Thats who I thought he meant dups?”

    It was btw.

    Francis is a useless commentator.Dexter is right,even a broken clock and all that.

  39. Fuck off you pendant! Course I meant dupsff!

  40. Dexter – did you mean, “Fuck off you pedant!”?

  41. pedantic george


  42. PG

    Touchy? Only on topics that I think are bandwagon jumping or I am entirely frustrated by people avoiding answering a question. TBH on this technology issue, I have no problems per se with using videos but everyone is too wishy-washy about it. Even AW said this is kneejerk and a proper assessment needs to be made.

    Fundamentally, what I want is someone to stand up and say these are the parameters. At least then we have a starting point of discussion which is where I really want to get to. Might have to do that soon.

  43. dk

    No mate, it was a joke. Thanks though.

  44. pedantic george


    (as you so well put it 😉 )

  45. Cologne are getting stuffed 3 nil, they have sacked their manager and Podolski has been pretty anonymous. Is there a clause in his contract that he can leave for a smaller fee is Koln get relegated?

  46. Arsenal ladies 0-0 at half time vs Frankfurt in the semi’s of the CL.

  47. OMFG! Another triple lutz from Ashley Young and its another dodgy pen for manu

  48. Unreal, ashley young is a fucking disgrace, yet the refs know he dives and cant give them penalties quick enough. Young runs into the player and flicks out both legs like a frog and dives.

  49. Another theatrical fall by Young. It was a foul, but he actually gets some airtime despite the foul being little more than a nick.

  50. No it wasnt a foul andy, do me a favour man.

  51. Un-fucking-believable! When is this diving cunt going to get banned for his repeated cheating and conning of the officials. This is a fuckin disgrace to football everywhere.

  52. Limestonegunner

    AW should take over UEFA in five years after he has rebuilt Arsenal into a championship winning team routinely again in the PL (3 titles starting next season) and wins at least one CL. I think he could oversee a major reform and modernization of football competition in a term. Not only does he think deeply about issues, he has clear, practical and balanced ideas for solutions while acknowledging that global assessments with all the major parties are needed before taking precipitous changes.

  53. Disgraceful dive. Contact does not equal a foul.

  54. Limestonegunner

    Young has always been a diving cheat but playing for Watford and Villa he got fewer calls his way and more yellows for simulation.

  55. Limestonegunner

    And against his former team makes it especially cynical. Former teammates probably not surprised so should have been more careful. Probably all the attention to last weekend’s antics would inhibit Young or embolden the refs to call the dive but all the focus on the offside took some focus away from Young’s behavior. No reason you can’t still give him a yellow for exaggerating it to try to con the ref while still giving a penalty if you think it’s a foul in the box, is there?

  56. Limestonegunner

    Probably thought all…

  57. I’m always worried when Peter HW starts summing up the unfinished season. Collapse in the last 5 games anyone? Hope not.

  58. Dex – He stood on his foot. So it was a foul. Just.

    If you think about it, the fact somebody had stood on his foot only makes it all the more unbelievable that he jumped in the air.

    Limestone – “No reason you can’t still give him a yellow for exaggerating it to try to con the ref while still giving a penalty if you think it’s a foul in the box, is there?

    Really interesting point. It would be hard for refs to implement I would imagine, but would also be the fairest outcome in many cases.

  59. pedantic george

    It was a stonewall Penalty.He almost touched him you know.

  60. I can’t stand Manure, but Scholes really a quality footballer.

  61. Andy

    The way he went into the player and then jumps up and flicks both legs out like he is atrwmtping the breast stroke, fucking twat probably practices that in training.

    Utter disgrace, he needs to get at least a retrospective booking for that.

  62. At no other club would a striker dive into a penalty after his high profile dive in the previous game. He would be slaughtered by the press, and the ref would not dare give a questionable decision again.

    Sorry, I forgot, there is no conspiracy in EPL, and everything evens out.

  63. I hate it when people post random negative bollocks

    Cup of tea anyone?

  64. goonerandy – there is absolutely no way the defender stood on his foot – looked more like the other way round.

  65. stood on his foot?

  66. Problem is Dex, the ref saw it and dealt with it. Didn’t he…?

  67. Daily Telegraph football correspondent Henry Winter has tweeted: “I wonder if Sir Alex Ferguson or PFA chief Gordon Taylor might have a quiet word with Ashley Young about the
    reputation he’s acquiring.”
    “Acquiring” Jeez as usual the hacks are right on the ball as per. The fucker’s been doing it for years.

  68. Of course Yogi, thats it all done and conveniently dusted and brushed under the carpet!


    Yeah thats how I saw it too. He ran into the Villa player and then did his dying swan act. Well, if Natalie Portman can win an oscar for her performance…

  69. Dexter – Yeah, I do agree with that. I bet he stays behind for extra training.

    dk – You may be right. I just watched it about 10 times and it is hard to tell even then. The defender waves his leg out and there is “contact”. But it is hard to tell who’s fault it is. The fact the defender hung a leg out sealed the deal either way.

  70. If the FA had rescinded Derry’s red card (QPR game) and given Young the ban he deserved, this would not have happened again so soon.

  71. There is no way Villa will get anything from this. Manure are looking in the mood and Villa really are looking shite.

  72. Dupsff

    They bottled it didnt they? Hid behind this bulshit of not undermining refs, when all it does is make things even more difficult for them. You have to wonder though about the mentality of the refs, they simply could not wait to blow for both pens. I thought they have to be 100% convinced its a foul.


    Villa will be lucky to lose only 2 nil.

  73. Just curious, does anyone know Ashley Young’s penalty record during his 4 years at Villa? It would be an interesting experiment of ‘nature vs nuture.’ I suspect that his recent acculturation in Manure has augmented his ability to ‘win’ them!

  74. Dups – Yeah, that angle is quite damning for the cheating little runt. It is similar to the Pires one against Portsmouth. He makes sure there is contact so there is always the doubt if there was an actual “dive”.

  75. Jesus, what fucking awful defending. The ball went across the 6 yard box and 2 defenders and the keeper all just let it. Amazing.

  76. That camera angle says it all doesnt it? Cheat, lets all hold our breaths and wait for the media shit storm that is so bound to be unleashed on Young…. Ahem.

  77. Ray Wilkins just called him out on it. Yorke said it was a pen (unsurprisingly)

  78. In the game Villa palyed following Arsenal v Celtic (Dudu incident) Young dived twice.

    He has a record of diving going back years but the media are only now saying he will get a bad reputation.

  79. The only way this type of thing will get sorted is by retrospective action. You can’t expect a ref to get things like that right on the day every time. In real time you can see why it was given. The FA should (but won’t) give him a game ban.

  80. This made me chuckle

    “Ashley Young makes a strong claim to the 2012 Fallon D’Floor.”

  81. Alan Smith the manu apologist. Pity he can’t show that much support for his old team. Wanker.

  82. Thats a good one Dupsff!

  83. It would be interesting to hear what the Neviller makes of it tomorrow (as they will no doubt review it). He normally says things as they are. His first test of being a neutral?

  84. Andy

    Yoprke’s comment are fine by me, he is an ex-united player. Thats how I’d expect former Arsenal players to behave.

  85. I imagine the incodent will have been brushed under the carpet by tomorrow night mate.

  86. Dex – Very true.

    Heh, somebody just slammed into Young.

  87. Dups: “Fallon D’Floor” quite apt. Don’t you see he is now playing for a big club.

  88. Yorke’s just made himself look like a prize pillock regardless of what position or club he used to play for.

    But I think you are all being way to hard on the Flying Young; no way should a player achieving so much vertical thrust from so little upward momentum get punished.

    It’s a little pink tutu and a season ticket to the ballet he deserves.

    Looks like his glass coach has arrived …

  89. The ref could not see the foul but what about the theatrics? couldnt he or the linesman see how Young kicked his feet out?

    Anyway, I agree that there is a need for retrospective punishment. Take away goals that arrive from false situations such as these and suspend people. Suspend, fine, card.

  90. Off wiv dere ‘eads, I say.

  91. There is always going to be a problem when there is contact, no matter how small. Where they should start are the situations where there is no contact at all yet the player still appeals for a penalty.

  92. GA, if the player that dived intiated the contact, I see no difference.

  93. dk, as a last resort.

  94. Paul – I do agree, it is just that bit harder to prove. If there is no contact (as is often the case) it is case closed.

  95. pedantic george

    “goonerandy | April 15, 2012 at 5:30 pm
    There is always going to be a problem when there is contact, no matter how small. Where they should start are the situations where there is no contact at all yet the player still appeals for a penalty.”

    Good idea Andy.Were did you get it from?

  96. Todays was obvious though. If it is obvious, deal with it.

  97. George – Get it from? I have thought that for a long while.

  98. City have scored more goals than United and conceded less but they are still 5 points back.

  99. Warmest congratulations to United; another master class from the diving Mancs.

    They must be very proud.

  100. I think the refs are too quick to blow the whilstle when a player dives though. All you have to do is kick out and you almost always win a pen.

  101. Paul – Again. I do agree. All young would have to say is that the contact unbalanced him. I know it is ridiculous, but that is what would happen. If there was no contact at all he could have no comeback.

    They could do it your way (and I wish they would), but they would have to have some balls to do that. And they don’t.

    And as you pointed out, this one was quite obvious but many are not that cut and dry.

  102. GA, Young falling is not a problem for me, he could well have lost his balance. He kicked his legs out, that is where he was trying to con the ref. That is obvious.

  103. And Dwight Yorke thought it was a penalty in any case; apparently “you can’t do that in this day and age”. Whatever “that” was.

    What I find most galling is how the Pires and Eduardo incidents are still referenced on a periodic basis, Manure cheat their way to two penalties in a week and that’s somehow okay.

    Mind you Bob and Eddie were foolish enough to be foreigners, don’t know if that has anything to do with it? Any takers …?

  104. This contact argument is baloney man. Its a contact sport (isnt it?) shoulder barges sliding tackles n all that. Yet every time cheats like Young, Suarez and Bale go down ‘easily’ the tired old excuse of there was contact, or the player was being ‘clever’ gets trotted out. Pires was pilloried for years after his fall vs Pompey, yet that was nothing like the ones we have witnessed recently. I didnt even think Pires dived! 🙂

  105. andrew

    Yorke is being partisan, nothing wrong with that. I don’t agree with him, but he is just sticking up for his old club.

    Its the pundits and commentators who are worse IMO. Making excuse after excuse, Alan Smith, hold your head in shame!

  106. In as much as Ashley Young’s dive won Utd a penalty, Villa were awful going forward as usual. Utd are top of the table yet play the most boring, drab football in the whole league. I have watched about 7 or 8 of their games this year and have not been impressed. their organisation is excellent, great in and around the opponents box but outside of that I really do not think they are that good. Living on reputation I believe yet look at the table. That is a big gap between The Arsenal and Manure, they nust be doing something right.

    On the subject of Stewart Robson. He was commentating on the Utd game and guess what? He was pretty decent, not great but good enough. No stupid negative comments, good knowledge of various players, good grasp on the history of both teams and shared a few insights about both managers. In other words, every thing we expect from a commentator so why the fuck can he not do that for The Arsenal games!?

  107. Dexter – Yeah, you are right of course. But in all reality that is not going to change much now, so if something is available to put in that will stop blatant outright diving it can only be a good thing no?

    Le Bob didn’t dive? Heh, no he was just “clever” 😉

  108. Commentators simply don’t want to say anything resembling being confrontational or controversial. The very definition of a fence sitter.

    That is why Neville has been a breath of fresh air; he has just called things as he saw them. like I say, it will be interesting to hear his thoughts on Young tomorrow.

  109. GA – i agree with you on Neville being a breath of fresh air. He really does call it as he sees it and 99% of the time he is right. He also pulls no punches in what he says. He has very quickly become a must read any time he puts a piece out.

  110. Dexter

    I think the likes of Young (for repeatedly cheating) and Yorke (for endorsing the dishonesty without qualification) are equally reprehensible and set an appalling example to youngsters watching.

    And make me feel sick.

    Its two sides of the same coin that is destroying the moral fabric of the game and largely responsible for the whole technology debate …

    GoonerA – if only there was something, anything, available that would stop the blatant outright diving, let me see, oh, what could it be?

    No doubt we’d use it in a heartbeat …

  111. Spuds only victory away from home this year was against Watford. And they are the best Spuds team in 40 years? It’s funny cos it’s true! 🙂

  112. Andy

    Do you remember Pederson’s dive vs Arsenal 2 years back? He was about 2 yards away from Sagna but from the ref’s viewpoint, it looked like there could have been contact. Now, if there was a chance to retrospectively book a player, then that was it. Didn’t happen of course.

    I dont think commentatoros are fence sitters, they just pick and choose what incidents to make into issues. Lack of consistency, they throw that at the refs, yet they are the very epitome of it. Bias perhaps? 😉

  113. Agree re: G Neville; interesting that he feels he can afford to be so honest but I guess he doesn’t ‘need’ a career in the media and is beholden to no-one …

  114. Irishg

    No doubt when they end the season 6th and lose today, they will be the worst spud team in a generation and Arry will be hounded out.

  115. pedantic george

    I hate the fact that I now like Neville

  116. Alex Ferguson; On the Ashley Young penalty incident, he said: “I think he played for the penalty. He has definitely taken a fall, it was a dramatic fall and he overdid it but it’s a penalty definitely, no doubt about it.”
    Andrew; you see? Yorke is in tune with his old boss man.

  117. George

    It shows what a well rounded person you are, that you can now like someone who as a play was sooooo reprehensibly despicable.

  118. Don’t really care who wins out of the Chavs and Spuds; ideally a long hard close fought game that goes to extra time (is that correct?) so that following their inevitable defeat to Barca midweek, Chel$ki are utterly exhausted by the time they visit the Home of Football at the weekend …

  119. Yeah, you’re right Dex – but guess who, out of Yorke and Neville (shall we start calling him Gary – no, that would be a rehabilitation too far!) will still be broadcasting in 5 years time?

  120. “Fallon D’Floor”

    ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!
    Thanks for that.

    Watching the Scum v Scum FA Cup semifinal. Never mind the video technology for the refs, there has to be a change to our ridiculously inflexible scoring system. Surely there has to be a way to ensure that both teams can lose such a match? Come on Septic Bladder and Flatulentini – sort it out!

  121. Have decided to watch the 2nd half down the pub to see if the game improves.

    Purely as an experiment, mind.

  122. @ limestonegunner
    no question that AW is one of the figures in football who are capable of original, long-term strategic thinking and who would have the drive and energy to see through a football reformation, but he would hate a job like that. He is a deep thinker about the game but working with his players is what gets him up of a morning and all the other bits of his job are just marking time in between coaching – that’s my impression, anyway.

    Is there a more moronic-sounding chant than Come On You Sp*rs”?
    Hint, the answer is no.

  123. I have decided I want Liverpool to win the FA Cup. For the only reason that I do not want either Spud or Chavs to win it. If Kenny can win both domestic cups, he will keep his job and that will be to The Arsenal’s benefit in the long run.

  124. Chavs 1-0 Spuds. Drogba.

  125. That’s the best goal I’VE ever seen Dogba score.

    Just the mention of a beer has improved the game no end!

  126. Excellent goal by Drogba. Such a strong player. It’s amazing what you can do when you refuse to throw yourself to the ground, are you watching Ashley Young?

  127. And not even offside, for once.

  128. Andrew – A beer does sound good mate 🙂 Think I may head down to my local too, just as an experiment mind!

  129. Whats this? A goal was scored and it wasnt as a result of a dive, offside, or hand of Bod??? Wow!

  130. @ arsenalandrew | April 15, 2012 at 6:39 pm

    Your devotion to the cause of scientific research is humbling. We all salute you.

  131. Shall report back later.

    May need to replicate the experiment over several games, of course.

  132. Today’s semi is quite an unprecedented gathering of unpleasant players and fans, this amount of dodgy persons at the same time in the same place is just mind blowing.

    I suppose a Chelsea win would be better for us. I do not care who wins FA anyway, but a Tots defeat would be welcome.

    How many red cards would we prefer? 3 or may be 4? Drogba with a second yellow is a decent chance.

  133. The ball was nowhere near the line and there was a foul beforehand. Of course, it’s always enjoyable when Sp*rs get shafted but neither the ref nor the assistant could’ve seen if it’s a goal or not, so why did they give it? Is that some sort of rule: “If in doubt, give a goal.”?

  134. Ferguson has been quick to flatter McLeish and praise him for playing so many young players, in other words, throwing the game. He also has twisted the Young dive saying the Villa defender caught him and should have got out the way. Typical, but I wouldnt expect him to say Young dived. Thats their best offensive weapon at the moment. They are struggling and have needed Young’s theatrics to get the all important 1st goal. Without that help, they may have dropped points vs QPR and Villa today. They are in a slump, but are getting the help they need from officials.

  135. a Non-goal awarded to Chelsea…what a crazy mess

  136. SV

    Yep, I dont think there have been this many c*nts in one place since the 1936 Munich rally.

  137. Some interesting early results in my ‘lab’ …

  138. David Luiz did his hammy. Is that good or bad for us?

  139. What did the linesman see to award the goal. video replay should start with goals first.

  140. Oh my god I just saw Atkinson overtake Scottie P. What a Denilson that Parker fella is. And some people really wanted us to bring him in?

  141. So my friend and neighbor, Mark the Spud, is trying to decide if he will take my bet. Odds of 5-1 that the Spuds come back to beat the Chavs. $40 bet.

  142. If anyone is wondering how Atkinson saw the Chelsea goal.That’s the same guy who “saw” the challenge between Song and Balotelli and decided that there is no foul.

  143. That was a proper Arteta from Lampard there.

  144. I almost feel sorry for the super soaraway best in fiddy years spuds…. Almost! 🙂

  145. Cech should have been sent off, which would have been good for us. Adebayor dived mind.

  146. @Dexter
    Especially because Bale was offside. The goal shouldn’t have stood, pen and a red card should’ve been the order of the day.

  147. True Evil. No surprises the officials have been dodgy today.

  148. How embarrassing… That announcer at the stadium is a proper dick!

  149. I hate it when officials decide that they want to go and bend the rules a bit. That Chelsea player kicked out, so how come that’s not violent conduct and a red card? I mean I can understand he doesn#t want to send a player off that late into a game who hasn’t really done much but rules are the rules and that every referee in this country thinks they need to have their own standards and interpretation of them is just infuriating at times.

  150. Something almost Henryesque about Joel Campbell. Long may it continue.

  151. Nice watching the spudz getting stuffed, Shame the other team had to win though.

  152. pedantic george

    Evil | April 15, 2012 at 7:48 pm
    Especially because Bale was offside. The goal shouldn’t have stood, pen and a red card should’ve been the order of the day.

    Yes he should have been flagged off side and it brought back to the first offence,Red and Pen.

    Will the kick out be reviewed?

  153. Tiny Tots getting hammered 😀 it’s a good day

  154. Oh its all Fabio capello’s fault! Thats the reason why the sorry spuds have fucked it all up innit guv.

  155. FinnGun, I know what you mean. The way how he controlled that pass, his first touch is similar to Henry. A really talented young man.

  156. Gallas & King. hahahahaha what a pair

  157. It should be George, but given that the piss poor (not biased or corrupt) Atkinson booked him for something else, the FA will say its hands are tied and they can’t retrospectively spank Mikel’s bottom.

  158. Maybe when Joel comes back, we might see him on the wing for a bit?

  159. Jack, a disillusioned Tottenham fan: “Ridiculous refereeing decision at a crucial time but I’m so sick of Harry’s limited tactics. Defoe for Rafa is the only sub he ever makes. I’m seeing our season capitulate again.”


  160. That’s the thing. Harry isn’t a particularly good manager. He isn’t tactically astute, he is not a good motivator. He might be a decent chap in the dressing room and he certainly knows how to spend money, but those two attributes don’t turn you into a top class manager.

  161. Evil;

    You know that, I know that, most of us on here and in the rest of the universe do, EXCEPT the fucking lazy jongoistic hacks and media and for a couple of years, the majority of spud fans.

  162. pedantic george

    Jabba, a disillusioned Tottenham fan: “Ridiculous refereeing decision at a crucial time but I’m so sick of Harry’s limited tactics. Defoe for Rafa is the only sub he ever makes. I’m seeing our season capitulate again.”


  163. Well, no complaints from me about the beer experiment; a thoroughly entertaining game ensued from the point the pint was poured.

    A shit decision is still a shit decision mind, regardless of the victim …

    The big problem 5pud2 have is the Chavs just aren’t that good!

    And neither, it would now appear, is ‘Arry.

  164. Apart from the fact that I’m happy the Spuds lost, I think the referees are making these howlers of mistakes on purpose because they want the technology? It just doesn’t make sense because “no” technology gives them absolute power on the game….I don’t understand?

  165. Dexter – “Andy

    Do you remember Pederson’s dive vs Arsenal 2 years back? He was about 2 yards away from Sagna but from the ref’s viewpoint, it looked like there could have been contact. Now, if there was a chance to retrospectively book a player, then that was it. Didn’t happen of course.

    I remember it well mate. It was disgusting and nothing was really made of it. If I recall correctly a few even chuckled at him “trying his luck”.

  166. Wenger is right. Referees are faced with an impossibly difficult job. Millions of television watchers see and know things that they may not. I would simply allow one official on the sidelines to see what the cameras see. And one of those radio-thingies they already wear. Does it need to be more complicated than that?

  167. pedantic george

    Have we stopped laughing at Spurs already?

  168. I paused but only for an extra deep breath.

  169. Only just seen the goals. How on earth did the ref give that goal?

  170. Let me see – which goal …?

  171. Heh, very true. The one that didn’t even nearly go over the line. Mental.

  172. No, it didn’t even nearly go over the line. Spuds chasing the game after that …

    Luckily, these things all even themselves out so no need for technology.

    Or discussions about it.


    Anyone hear the sonic boom of the Flying Young, earlier?

    Another incident not in need of video review; the game’s chock full of ’em …

  173. pedantic george

    It seems Young was hit by a gust of wind from the Stretford end.So he is blameless.

  174. I think it’s about time someone told Ashley Young that spreading his legs like that every week could have serious consquences.

  175. consequences even (before pg gets in)

  176. Totally off-topic, but at the bottom of my browser it says, “Waiting for”
    Anyone know what that means?

  177. “Young has always been a diving cheat but playing for Watford and Villa he got fewer calls his way and more yellows for simulation.”

    I strongly suspect this was the main skill that attracted SAF to him. He has got to be the biggest cheat in the PL and he has the perfect manager as old red nose is known for encouraging his players to go down if they even sense contact.

  178. pedantic george

    Passenal,I am not sure he is a bigger cheat than Bale.

  179. dkgooner

    It’s just one of the images on the side panel, above right.

  180. Flint McCullough

    Bale is certainly bigger than Young but they cheat about the same!

  181. pedantic george

    Yo Flint,where have you been?

  182. Flint McCullough

    Been a bit poorly pg but still observing the fun on here.

  183. Ha haha ha ha ha …ha ha. them poor yids….ha ha ha…and now for them to fall out of the top 4…they have nowt left….arry has not been able to get them out of their coma from which they were put by us after their spanking at the mruts….pfft arry for england..

  184. pedantic george

    How you get better soon Flint.You have been missed.

  185. pedantic george

    hope not how.

  186. pedantic george

    Duke,you love a gloat more than most.

  187. well george they bring it all upon themselves dont they the poor gits. it is nice that they have all disapperad back up their…shells though isn’t it.. i have not erd a peep from my spud u dont like mates….

  188. george i miss you as well matey when your not around!

  189. pedantic george

    I don’t like?

  190. oi dont pick holes in my gags.

  191. pedantic george

    soz Dukey

  192. Limestonegunner

    FG, AW is also a person with a great sense of responsibility and public mission. He’s also said he has a big interest in politics and might have been a public figure in a different life. Leading European football forward might be the sort of challenge that would appeal to him. I don’t think what you said about his love of working with players is untrue, but this isn’t so far from his talents or interest, I think.

  193. Limestonegunner

    You might be right about that, Passenal. It seemed a bit if a strange signing with Nani and Valencia already starting on the wings and no real quality replacement centrally for Scholes. But having an England international throwing himself down is even better, as he knows having had Rooney doing the same for years.

  194. Limestonegunner

    Atkinson hasn’t said he feels bad for having missed the Balotelli assault on Song but apparently he has already done so to Redknapp for allowing Mara’s goal despite the ball failing to cross the line.

  195. woot the throot

    “Mario Balotelli has spoken of his shock at the sudden death of Italian midfielder Piermario Morosini and insists the tragedy will teach him to ‘appreciate and respect life’.

    you keep thinking that Super Mareio.

    someone should start singing the super mario theme song next time man city plays against arsenal.

    also, read/watch this ( please. Then realize it is a global news publication printing this sh*T.

  196. Very interesting philosophical debate raised there as to who is the biggest cheating diving cunt in the division as simple stats can be misleading.

    If one refers to the Cheating Diving Cunt Register – known as ‘The Maradona Scale’ (named after the patron saint of Cheating Cunts) we can immediately see the answer, at the end of this season at least, is likely to be the Flying Young.

    Whilst to many, the Diving Bale has put in the strongest of claims throughout a long season of diving and all round cuntiness, come May, when the medals are awarded, it’s most likely that the Flying Young’s ‘talents’ will have proved most valuable to his teammates at the aptly named Theatre of Cheating Diving Cunts.

    For this reason I think Young will have shaded it – but probably only on Cunt Difference as it really is that close.

    * Apologies for the use of foul language; one would only seek to use the ‘D’ (for diving) word in the most exceptional of circumstances. Unfortunate to see it has crept into the game thanks largely to the exploits of those like Bale and Young but also due to the failure of observers and commentators alike at the BBC and beyond, to condemn the practise.

    Shame on them all.

  197. pedantic george

    Andrew I think Suarez has eclipsed Maradona in the greatest cheats stakes.

  198. I think you are probably right George; credit where credit’s due – Maradona got there first.

  199. Well there is neither bias nor corruption in the game. Just modern-day referees having it hard doing a good job. Right Bill?

  200. Shotta

    The problem is so endemic that corruption does not explain it; alas incompetence is the most likely answer with more than a touch of individual bias.

  201. Suarez is definitely the cheatiest of the cheats and the cuntiest cunt in the league to boot.

    He repulses me.

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