Best manager ever – Herbert Chapman

Written by Herb’sArmy

For most of us on AA, it is impossible to separate our emotions from our club, the two are intrinsically linked. It’s probably fair to say that whilst both games caused a lot of pain, the Blackburn game probably wounded us deeper than the one at OT, if only because of the expectation. And apart from one or two predictable ‘Wenger Out’ bloggers, most of us kept a lid on our seething rage.

One comment that stood out for me was RA’s, categorically proclaiming AW is the greatest manager the club has ever had.

Sorry RA, I don’t agree, and here’s why.

Collectively I think we can all acknowledge and celebrate in the wonderful things Arsene Wenger has brought to our club, and there is no doubt that he has raised our profile across the globe. Beautiful football, titles, the Invincibles, Champions League every year without fail (thus far), and a world-class all-seated stadium are the obvious stand-out achievements, along with the plethora of gifted footballers he has given us. Enough certainly to satisfy any Arsenal fan anywhere, me included. But it’s a big call to call him the greatest.

For me it is Herbert Chapman.

He truly revolutionised Arsenal, and laid all the foundations for what we are today.

We had been in existence for 44 years before Chapman won us our first trophy in 1930 (which puts this current ‘drought’ into real perspective!). He built the Huddersfield side that won three successive titles (they’ve never won it since), and then made Arsenal the most famous club in the world. He built a side that achieved something no Arsenal side has done since, dominating our domestic league with five titles and three FA Cups between 1930-39. Tragically he died January 6th 1934 with Arsenal on the way to the second of their three successive titles, and of course George Allison took over, but it was Chapman’s team, formation and tactics.

And though he only had nine years at the club, he died with his team top of the table, and with trophies still waiting to be won.

He didn’t change the club crest or over-see a massive stadium move (he didn’t have to, Highbury was a world-class stadium in it’s hey-day), but what he did do was re-define who and what Arsenal Football Club stood for. He revolutionised the whole football culture with his visionary W-M tactics, and showed the world how football should be played, with stand-out legends such as Eddie Hapgood, Wilf Copping, Alex James, Cliff Bastin, David Jack and Ted Drake.

He was the first manager to advocate floodlights, the use of shirt-numbers, and quite literally put Arsenal on the map by getting Islington Borough Council to change Gillespie Road tube station to Arsenal tube station.

Chapman’s vision all those years ago is exactly why we are in a position to appoint the likes of Arsene Wenger today.

Arsene Wenger has undoubtedly earned his legendary status at our club, but the accolade as the club’s greatest manager, for me personally, has to go to Herbert Chapman..

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194 Responses to Best manager ever – Herbert Chapman

  1. Morning all

    Well done Herb, nice to add you to the list of authors.

    I will definitely be at the Tavern by 2 o’clock. Chary and GiE will be there before me and chas will be around too. Harry and his boys will pitch up at some time.

    Brigham – care to give us a description of yourself again so that we can keep a look out as we missed you last time.

  2. Good morning all you happy Gooners,

    Herbert Chapman the greatest, yes without doubt!.

    Much is attributed to Arsene Wenger,although how much could have been achieved without the solid backing of people like Danny Fizsman, David Dein and the rest of the board is open to debate.

  3. kelsey says:

    He truly revolutionised Arsenal, and laid all the foundations for what we are today.

    —————————————————————————-

    .

    A few months ago i read an article about the history of Arsenal and in a poll of twenty year olds and under , 22% had never heard of Chapman.

    new age fans and all that, which to an extent proves what we discussed a few days ago that some kids just latch on to the team of the moment or at least a top vlub even if they have no real inbred allegiance..Commomly known as floaters.

  4. Brigham says:

    Peaches – I am 5ft 10, bald, overweight! I will be wearing my 71 cup final yellow shirt with a black jacket which sports a ECL Arsenal v Barcelona badge and Glasgow Rangers/Arsenal one also.

    I plan on getting there between 12 and 1pm.

    Peaches, I know you have my email, perhaps you could email me your mobile number or I can let you have mine for ease of meeting.

    I may have a mate with me who is about 6 foor 2!

  5. MickyDidIt89 says:

    GiE,
    Brilliant: “I’ll put up a description of what I’m wearing”. The home top. That should make identification fairly straight forward then :-)
    Post reading now.

  6. Big Raddy says:

    Herb. Thank you for a fine post reminding us that Arsenal have a glorious past. And a further thank you for your fine comment last night about football and supporting The Arsenal.

    I grew up with tales of the genius of Alex James and even had him in my subbuteo team :-)

  7. Fantastic post Herb. It’s difficult to compare as they both live(d) in such different eras. I think Wenger has enhanced what Chapman started. I imagine Chapman would approve of Wenger. Chapman shades it for me although Wenger had to do it against a backdrop of manc dominance. Chapman was up against the Huddersfield team he created.

  8. Rasp says:

    Great post Herb = HCAA. Chapman must go down as the greater of the two in terms of innovation. He was also not beyond a bit of underhand dealing and so he had a single minded determination to win. AW has been more resposible than anyone for changing modern English football but he was bringing ideas from abroad whereas Chapman was the first in many areas.

    I think AW could only be considered in the same bracket if he manages to turn round our fortunes and get us to the top again when all the cards stacked against him.

  9. Fatgingergooner says:

    I started supporting Arsenal aged 9 because they were the first team that I had seen on the tv. I had no real knowledge of club history and it’s fair to say that I haven’t really improved my knowledge of the club since then.

    For me, due to the era in which I started watching Arsenal, Arsene Wenger is the greatest manager this club has had and Bergkamp and Henry are the greatest ever players we have had. But that’s from my own Arsenal adventure and based upon my own experience.

  10. old time gunner says:

    Good to see Herbert Chapman being recognised for what he did. During his era I believe we also supplied 7 of the 11 England team, were the first club to have radio coverage of a game and the first to have a game televised. We played glamorous floodlit friendlies against Racing Club of Paris long before the European Cup (forerunner of the present Champions League)and were regarded as unofficial world champions. It should also be remembered that Bertie Mee and George Graham won European trophies, something that Arsene has never done and will never do because of his tactical ineptitude and his failure to buy/build a strong defence. I await the abuse from the “Arsene Knows” brigade.

  11. Red Arse says:

    Morning Herb, :-)

    What can I say? Well, I can say without fear of contradiction is that I said some weeks ago, that you had AA quality Post writing in you. I was not wrong. Excellent!! :-)

    I must say that you argue a persuasive case for Herbert C, and it is difficult to deny anything you have written about him.

    He was, indeed, a luminary of his generation, and certainly put Arsenal up there for the first time as a seriously important club, and it is all credit to him.

    My position on Arsene is, of course, influenced by the fact that he is in the here and now, and with all the unjustified criticism of him, it is my natural inclination to rally around and show respect and loyalty to him. I will not and could not change that.

    Herb C on the other hand is a famous and familiar Arsenal hero, but only known to me through the history of his wonderful achievements.

    It is notoriously difficult to compare footballers, athletes or managers from different eras, but, that said, I think you have made a very good case, and I am prepared to elevate Herb C up there with Arsene. :-) :-)

    Once again, well done sir, that was a really good read and I enjoyed it!! :-)

  12. kelsey says:

    Herb,

    Apologies, a great post about a great man.

    by the way is it obligatory to be bald and overweight to post on here (men only) ;)

  13. dev says:

    Yes Herbert Chapman is the greatest without a doubt

  14. Red Arse says:

    Ermm, Kelsey as I am rather hirsute, and look like a hairy fairy — well not the latter exactly.

    Does that mean I am not a man? Well kiss me quick and call me Sally!! :-)

    Got to go – hope to be back later!

  15. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Good post Herb,

    Chapman and Wenger are both legends. The greatest man for me is ‘Sir Henry Norris’, Tottenham fans love him.

  16. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Herb,
    You are biased :-) and now I know why. Excellent post. Tough call this one. Arsene has won more trophies and both are renaissance men in different ways. So I’m siding with RA and going for an honourable draw.

  17. Big Raddy says:

    Old TG. I have yet to meet an AKB on this site, nor is it a term I can accept because all it does is cause division amongst the supporters of our great club.

    Where I will take issue with you is over the defence. I accept that AW was fortunate to inherit the TA back 5 but he created the excellent defence of Lehmann, Lauren, Campbell, Toure and Cole. However, that we have struggled over recent seasons is indisputable.

    AW has done something HC couldn’t and that is create The Invincibles. Furthermore, AW has fielded sides with 11 Internationals, and this current squad has 5 International Captains.

    And – under the stewardship of AW, Arsenal have a team which holds the World record unbeaten run – our Ladies team went 6 years unbeaten – 108 games!!

  18. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Good shout Terry Transplant.

  19. Big Raddy says:

    TMHT. We mustn’t forget Terry Neill. An Arsenal man through and through. who over 2 seasons as THFC manager took them from top 3 to barely escaping relegation.

    He went to Arsenal and took us to 3 FAC Finals running, the UEFA Final and a Top 3 finish – the first for 10 years.

    They still hate him at WHL :-D

  20. Big Raddy says:

    And then there is George Graham, who had a gardener create an AFC crest on his terrace and had/has a massive collection of Arsenal memorabilia. ….. brilliant idea to make him THFC manager!

    Best League position during GG’s tenure – 10th :-D

  21. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Big Raddy,

    Oh yes the great Terry Neil. I will always remember what he said after we got beat 5-0 at Boro during his tenure ” We played like eleven Dustbins out there”.

  22. MickyDidIt89 says:

    BR,
    Stab in the dark here. You don’t like Spurs very much do you?

  23. kelsey says:

    and VCC who has a cannon on his arse.A real supporter.

  24. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Big Raddy,

    What i loved about George’s time at Tottenham was that it finaly ended there constant whines that though we were better, they played good football.

  25. kelsey says:

    On a side note shame about Sid Wardell, a great commentator on darts the Stuart Hall of his sport

  26. Big Raddy says:

    Micky. What makes you say that?

  27. Big Raddy says:

    TMHT. Been a long time since they could say that – which is a huge plus for AW.

  28. Fatgingergooner says:

    Kelsey,

    Has Sid died?

  29. chas says:

    Nice post, Herb.
    Let’s hope AW can rise like a pheasant from the flames and add to his record so far.

    Norris wasn’t a manager, was he? But certainly for getting up the noses of those luvverley spuds, he has to win hands down.

    Had a quick look for Herbert Chapman quotes….

    ‘A team can attack for too long. The most opportune time for scoring is immediately after repelling an attack, because opponents are then strung out in the wrong half of the field. All the men are expected to play to plan, but not so as to stifle individuality.’
    The legendary Herbert Chapman invents counter attacking football.

    ‘We arrived at the hotel half-an-hour early. Chapman immediately went into the lounge bar. He called the waiter, placed two pound notes in his hand and said: ‘George, this is Mr Wall, my assistant. He will drink whisky and dry ginger. I will drink gin and tonic. We shall be joined by guests. They will drink whatever they like. See that our guests are given double of everything, but Mr Wall’s whisky and dry ginger will contain no whisky, and my gin and tonic will contain no gin.’
    Chapman’s assistant Bob Wall reveals how the legendary Arsenal manager negotiated the transfer of Bolton’s David Jack for a curious knockdown price.

    (both form vital arsenal)

  30. chas says:

    ..from not form (I always type that incorrectly)

  31. Danny says:

    Memories of walking up those white steps towards the big black entrance of Highbury, entering the white marbled hall with the big red cannon in the middle and there at the back the bronze bust of Herbert Chapman. Even in the dark days of 1975-76,1982-86 or 1996-97, you’d be in awe of standing there like you were in a hallowed hall. Yes Chapman was the best and even decades after his passing, he left a feeling that Arsenal were the greatest team in the world.

  32. Red Arse says:

    Chas, :-)

    I had trouble with a couple of pheasants when cooking them. Would not stay in the bloody oven!! :-)

    Did you mean phoenix from the flames? They taste really good too! :-)

  33. chas says:

    RA,

    Phoenix with red wine and shallots, yum.

    The pheasant reference is from a Derek Randall (the cricketer) story. He apparently said that his team needed to rise like a pheasant from the flames. When corrected, he said, I knew it was some bird beginning with an ‘F’. :)

    Is baldness caused by too much testosterone or simply genetic?

  34. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Chas,

    There is a component in Testosterone called DHT which is proven to attack the hair folicule, but only us baldies are prone to it, thats were the genetic element comes in.

  35. chas says:

    Thanks TMHT,

    Had a quick google of DHT and testosterone and one link was talking about penis enlargement using topical application of DHT gel.
    Also good for ‘bitch tits’.
    Well I never.

  36. Gunnerigors says:

    Of course Herbert Chapman wouldn’t have survived some of our current fanbase as he went six seasons from his arrival in 1925 before he won the league, despite Arsenal being one of the two richest clubs in the land, able to break transfer records to get the best players.

  37. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Chas,

    Incredible, never heard of that before. if there is a link between having a larger member and hair loss it seems that i have lost out twice, typical.

  38. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi Herb, thanks for a great, and very well written post. You are writing about a period that was 75-80 years ago, so the question is can we really compare those periods? I mean football has become such an enormous sport in the last 40-50 years, that I am not sure whether you are comparing like with like. However, you make a very compelling case and I have learned a bit more about Arsenal’s past, thanks to you, Sir!

  39. I think Danny sums it up @ 11.12 – ‘Herbert Chapman left a feeling that Arsenal were the greatest team in the world’. Anyone want to argue with that :)

    What upsets me is that Arsene Wenger was carrying on that great tradition and now he seems to be temporarly failing – she chooses her words carefully there. I still think he’s the best man for the job but I’d really like it if he was the AW that still had a magic hat.

  40. gunnern5 says:

    Herb,

    It’s a most difficult task comparing the 1930′s to the present period,
    So much has changed but one fact that seems to have un-written is the type of opposition that the two managers have faced.

    In 1930/31 when we won our 1st league title Man U finished last and were relegated not to re-appear until1933/37 when they were again relegated. HC never had to face up to teams like Chelsea, Man U. Man C, Liverpool, which made his task somewhat easier.

    Anyway just for the heck of it here are the two managers stats. (League only)

    ………………HC……..AW
    Years…….. 8………..14.8
    Played…….336……..567
    Won……….157……..327
    Tied………..84……….145
    Lost………..95………..95
    Goals F…..736……..1066
    Goals A…..541……..515
    Avg Pos….6.25……..3.72
    Leagues…..2…………3
    FA cups……1…………4

    Notice how much better AW’s defensive record is compared to HC’s

    AW.s goals against per game is .91 and HC’s was 1.61

    I also feel it’s incorrect to fatten up HC’s stats by including trophies won by George Allison.

    Suffice to say AW’s my man,,,,,,He has achieved against the odds whereas in HCs days we were the big fish in the pond…very different set of circumstances.

  41. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Peaches,
    A Magic Hat, or put another way, Terry Henry.
    One great player bloody well does a great team maketh!
    .
    Chas,
    Your pic. The bloke sitting extreme right. Someone’s granddad come along for the day? On the other hand, if he really was a player, then it does beg the question “how hard can it have been in those days?”.

  42. oz gunner says:

    Great post Herb, congrats on getting your name up on the hall of fame, in a couple of weeks during the mid semester break i might try my hand at it peaches.

    Afternoon AA’ers.

    TMHT, it is interesting stuff, in high school we had science topics to choose and i got lumbered with Male pattern baldness. Stupid topic but good to know for the future i guess. Learnt that it actually comes from your mums side which was interesting as most think it comes from your dad

    Having only grown up watching Arsene and a small part of GG, i’d call it a draw, just the fact that Arsene hasn’t won a european trophy means he doesn’t get the nod for me.

  43. kelsey says:

    Do not despair 1912/13 was not a great season to follow the arsenal..

    Fewest League wins in a season – 3 in 38 matches, First Division, 1912-13
    Most League defeats in a season – 23 in 38 matches, First Division, 1912-13

    Fewest League goals scored in a season – 26 in 38 matches, First Division, 1912-13
    Fewest points in a League season (2 for a win) – 18 in 38 matches, First Division, 1912-13

  44. kelsey says:

    Ah, I see the eagle has landed :)

  45. oz gunner says:

    G5 you do make a good point, Arsene definently has tougher competition. I hope he brings this team to glory again because when he goes he deserves to leave at the top. Bring back the colourful pullovers aswel i say

  46. kelsey says:

    if you look at pictures of before and after the Chapman era up to the mid fifties nearly every man wore a hat, and some believe that is also a consideration to baldness but the schmuck Red Arse would know :)

  47. TotalArsenal says:

    Oz, I for one, would be looking forward to seeing your maiden post :)

  48. chas says:

    Micky,
    I hadn’t noticed him. :)
    I reckon it must have been really hard playing in those steel toe cap boots, massive shorts and with a ball that became like lead when wet. And having to smoke 40 Capstan Full Strength every day.

  49. chas says:

    Has everyone seen this/these ( there are a few) before? From 1955 so over 20 years after Chapman. Best viewed in full screen, of course.
    Kelsey, you’re playing!

    http://www.britishpathe.com/record.php?id=38992

  50. oz gunner says:

    cheers TA, i hope i don’t disappoint. Does peaches give it a quick edit because english never was my stong point haha.

    @ Chas

    i agree i don’t know how they smoked and drank non-stop yet run up and down pitches. I’ve seen early footage of aussie rules players and they smoked, drank beer non-stop (especially straight after a match), beat the snot out of one another on the field and do it all again a week later. These days players miss weeks with hang nails and roll on the floor like they’ve been hit by a car

  51. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Thanks Oz, lets hope you never have to put your knowlede to any form of practice.

    Founders of Dynasties are always revered, Chapman at Arsenal. Shankly at Liverpool, Busby at Utd, Ramos at Tottenham, etc.

  52. chas says:

    Oz,
    Apart from the smoking bit, your description sounds very much like our very own Tony Adams.

  53. chas says:

    Haha, Ramos at Tottenham.

  54. oz gunner says:

    @ TMHT

    yeah lets hope so, judging by my family history though my feathers are in trouble.

    True it does, definently my favourite player growing up! love the passionate tough players. Oh how i wish flamini had of stayed

  55. gunnern5 says:

    Oz,

    I played in the days of leather boots up to the ankle with the studs nailed into the soles – my feet used to bleed like hell if the nails were too long. The studs were also a weapon – Alex Forbes was an expert at running the bottom of his boot down the opposition’s legs. Not at all pretty,
    That’s why they still check the studs today – although with the new technology, in boot manufacture, it’s a tad redundant.

    Smokes of the day were Will’s Whiff’s and Turf.
    Beer was – Brown and Mild, Bitter or Stout.

  56. oz gunner says:

    We have come along way, football boots i wore last year were the nike ones AA wears, good for those with a bit of leg speed as they were light as a feather. But as i learnt the hard way those boots are designed for english pitches where they tend to be softer due to the weather. Our ground is tough and unforgiving over here. So after a few weeks of pre-season (predominently running) i ended up with stress fractures in my shins, which isn’t too comfy when you try to play through it for a month or so. Prob should of borrowed yours G5

  57. 26may1989 says:

    Afternoon all (and good morning GN5).

    Top post Herb, well done. I’m always one for a bit of perspective, and you’ve definitely supplied that. But not being 101 years old ( :) ), and there being virtually no film of the great Arsenal side of the 1930s (which I assume would have won even more if it weren’t for that Hitler fella), I don’t feel able to say who is better out of the Frenchman and the Yorkshireman. All I can say is that I feel mighty lucky to support a club that can boast having had two of English football’s greatest managers, something that only United and Liverpool could really match.

    Chapman’s achievement at Huddersfield, combined with the era-dominating team he built at Arsenal (inherited by Joe Shaw and George Allison), makes him a god amongst managers. It’s interesting to wonder why other Englishman and Scots weren’t making their mark at coaching in English football then – when you look at the early records of virtually all the great sides of Italy, Spain, Holland, and other countries, they are peppered with the names of Brit coaches, showing that there were many who could cut the mustard. (Pepper and mustard? I must be hungry.) And yet Chapman appears to have been almost alone in making his mark in England. Perhaps few of the football club owners trusted the coaching mularkey.

    As GN5 so astutely shows with his excellent stats, it would be a mistake to use Chapman as a stick to beat Wenger with. Chapman no doubt had his weaknesses. Eg, he managed the Arsenal side that lost the FA Cup Final to Cardiff in 1927 – sounds like we did a Birmingham that day and threw away a cup we were strong favourites to win.

    Personally, I think Wenger and Chapman would have had enormous respect for each other, and probably would have enjoyed many debates about detailed points on how to create winning and entertaining football.

    By the way, just a question, but can we really call Chapman our best manager ever when he played a few years for Spurs??!

    While on the subject of history, here’s an amusing piece from our friends in N17, complete with Norris reference: http://www.topspurs.com/thfc-arsepaste.htm. They don’t let it go do they???

  58. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    26may,

    Yes, they love Sir Henry Norris, they think he changed the history of football, and there right.

  59. 26may1989 says:

    Hi Terry

    I’m not too sure: Norris’s evil doings all date to the years around WW1 and into the early 1920s. If I remember rightly, he was a failed sugar daddy, in that Arsenal, who splurged huge quantities of cash on big name players, were expected to win trophies galore throughout the 1920s but failed miserably. And it was then only after Norris’s nefarious acts finally caught up with him (there was a scandal about using a company car and driver for personal use, I think), and he was banned from football for life, that Arsenal began to develop into a successful side.

    It should be remembered he also wanted to merge Arsenal, first with Chelsea and then Fulham.

    But the inescapable contribution Norris made was to move the club from Woolwich to North London, and house it in a beautiful new stadium in a much better bit of North London than the Spuds occupied. Thanks for that Henry!

  60. oz gunner says:

    @ 26

    great read. poor jealous scum. Wasn’t aware of that meeting, thats hilarious that they were relegated and we were promoted even though we were in 6th position

  61. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Greetings 26,

    No doubt Norris was a right dodgy geezer, gawd bless im. Tottenham fans love him you know, ha ha ha.

  62. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Chas,
    Great clips, thanks. About three weeks ago I was locked in an epic bidding war on ebay for some 1953 Boots and same era Size 5 ball. I lost, but ensured the seller got a very good price.
    .
    26,
    Love your link as well. While I know all about Sir Henry, it never fails to amaze me how tragic that lot down the road really are. Imagine wasting so much of a short life writing that drivel :-)

  63. kelsey says:

    I found this post on another site.very amusing.

    SK: Ivan how’s it going- great news last night IG:Fantastic game, we could win the CC now.SK; How’s Arsey, you did a fab job in your interview. IG: He’s OK- told all those idiots that want him out that he could stay another 14 years. SK: This Oxlade- Chamberlain guy must be good, he’s got a double barrel name, is he related to Neville Chamberlain? IG: No, he’s half- black.SK: Anyway, get me another aristocrat, how about Ebanks- Blake? IG; No, think he’s Jamaican.SK: Oh Ok, how’s’ Van Pee feeling about things these days? IG: Well, he’s not very happy after we sold Cesc and Samir, don’t think he’ll sign a contract extension at the end of the season. SK: Disgrace! Make him captain, give him £90k a week,he’ll want trophies next, get rid, he’ll fetch £20m surely? IG: Ok, I’ll see what Laws and I can do. Stan, these bloody fans are getting restless, they haven’t seen you this season or heard from you: SK: Well I can’t be everywhere can I- I’m coming over in December to do some Christmas shopping, I’ll take in the Everton game and maybe some dinner with Denis.IG Denis? SK: Hill- Wood. IG: No Denis died some years ago, Peter you mean.SK: Yes, keep doing my cramming on the club’s history when I can, but got some way to go eh?! Anyway, Ivan you and Arsene are doing a grand job making me, I mean the club, all this money with player sales and Champions League money let’s discuss an extension of yours and Arsey’s contract in December. IG; Stan, you’re the man, glad you appreciate our efforts. SK: no probs, see you in December and keep up the schmoozing on those interviews!

  64. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Its friday…

  65. kelsey says:

    nice one Mickey.

    I am sure that was dandan in our goal, and theo could try that glue on his own boots :)

  66. Red Arse says:

    You might like to know a tiny bit about Sir Henry Norris, bane of the Spuds! :-)

    Henry Norris was born into a working-class family in London on 23rd July, 1865. He left school at 14 to work at a solicitor’s firm. (typical!!)

    In the 1912-13 season Arsenal finished bottom of the First Division and were relegated. Henry Norris believed that the club had to move to an area which was highly populated and had a good transport network. Eventually he paid £20,000 for a 21 year lease on land owned by the Church of England at Highbury.

    One of the great advantages of the site was its proximity to Gillespie Road underground station. Tottenham Hotspur, Leyton Orient and Chelsea all complained to the League Management Committee about the proposed new stadium as they feared it would reduce the number of people attending their games. However, after a meeting in March 1913, the Football League announced “that under the rules and practice of the League we have no right to interfere.”

    At the end of the war it was decided to increase the First Division from 20 to 22 clubs. One solution to the problem was to allow the relegated clubs in the 1914-15 season, Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur, to remain in the First Division.

    However, Henry Norris disputed this idea. He argued that a great deal of match-fixing had gone on in the 1914-15 season and that league positions should be disregarded.

    The reasoning behind this was that Arsenal had finished in 5th place in the Second Division in the 1914-15 season and Norris realised that Arsenal would have had no grounds for being elected to the First Division.

    The FA decided to give Chelsea one of the vacant places in the First Division. However, Norris persuaded the league chairman to vote on the other club to join them.

    Arsenal then won the ballot with 18 votes. Spurs only got 8 whereas Barnsley, who finished 3rd in the Second Division in the 1914-15 season, received 5 votes.
    Many people (well Spurs) were of the opinion that Norris had bribed his fellow chairmen in order to win the election.

    Norris years later advertised the job of Arsenal Manager in the Athletic News on 11th May 1925. It read:
    “Arsenal Football Club is open to receive applications for the position of Team Manager. He must be experienced and possess the highest qualifications for the post, both as to the ability and personal character.
    Gentlemen whose sole ability to build up a good side depends on the payment of heavy and exorbitant transfer fees need not apply.
    {Perhaps Arsenal’s transfer policy was fixed forever by Sir Henry?}

    He had the foresight to appoint Herbert Chapman.

    Sir Henry died of a massive heart attack on 30th July 1934. He had previously been found guilty of profiting to the tune of £150 on the sale of the team bus and banned from football for life.

    Seemed a good guy to me — except for the solicitor bit!! :-)

  67. RockyLives says:

    Herb
    Excellent debut post – well played Sir.

    I think we have been blessed with three great managers: Chapman, Graham and now AW.

    Chapman was cut off in his prime. Graham worked miracles but eventually lost his way on the pitch (Selley, Morrow, Hillier, Carter, McGoldrick, Kiwomya, Helder etc) and off it (brown envelopes). Wenger has been glorious but has also since lost his way (partly because of the many external reasons that AA-ers are familiar with).

    On balance Herb, and taking into account the impracticality of comparing managers from different eras, you’re probably right that HC takes the title as king of Arsenal managers. But if AW brings us back to glory again, the crown will surely be his.

    PS: An honourable mention for Tom Whittaker, who doesn’t get mentioned much but brought us two league titles and an FA Cup between 1948 and 1953.

  68. RockyLives says:

    Micky
    Picked up on this line from earlier this morning, in which you were describing yourself: “Understated, discreet with a just a touch of Ooo helloo. Kind of tweeds with pink silk lining.”

    You are, as others have pointed out, a comedy genius.

  69. 26may1989 says:

    Micky: Same old Arsenal, always cheating!

    RA: :)

  70. kelsey says:

    Johnny MacLeod a right winger played for us from 1961 to 1964 and the record books show he was sold by Billy Wright i think to Villa because of the emergence of George Armstrong.

    That is not entirely true.Though never publically exposed he was alledgedly caught taking a bung on more than one occasion and was highlightd in an FA Cup game at Home Quite a few people at thc club were aware of that.He was sold but for that reason alone.he stayed at villa briefly,then went to belgium and back to Scotland and retired in 1972.

  71. kelsey says:

    I also have some sad news.It actually rained here this afternoon for about twenty minutes.

  72. 26may1989 says:

    No rain in London kelsey, just lovely bright sunshine – want to come home yet??

  73. RockyLives says:

    kelsey
    not funny :(

  74. RockyLives says:

    P*ssing down here in Toronto :(

  75. Red Arse says:

    Kelsey,

    That was my doing. A little psychic persuasion to get the clouds to pee on you for calling me a schmuck!! :-)

    Still, at least you did not refer to me as a schmackle, or a yok!

    To have done so would have forced me to experience a gratifying sense of schadenfreude as I released gotterdammerung on your Spanish paradise!

  76. kelsey says:

    26th did you get my comment a few days ago that I lived in your neck of the woods in Flood street off the Kings Road.That was 30 years ago.is Arsehole the shoe shop still there someone told me that they had moved to the other side of the Kings Road. must have been there since the mid sixties.

  77. Red Arse says:

    Kelsey,

    I’m just about to turn over and baste my back in this incredible Indian Summer!! :-)

    Malaga, Psshaww!!!

  78. 26may1989 says:

    Hi Kelsey

    I did see that one. In fact, I was a little loose in referring to my neck of the woods as Chelsea and QPR territory – really it’s the latter (a couple of QPR’s many pre-Loftus Rd grounds were round the corner from my house). But the blue shirts have infested this area, having moved north relentlessly from where they should be (below Hammersmith).

    I know Flood St, but I don’t know the King’s Rd area well enough to say where the shoe shops are am afraid. Round the corner from Flood St, Kylie Minogue did once witness the signing of one of my client’s wills though. I always felt Kylie and I have had a special bond ever since………

  79. 26may1989 says:

    Oh and I will be at The Tavern tomorrow, looking forward to seeing a good number of the AA crew.

  80. RockyLives says:

    Bolton have suffered a major injury blow ahead of tomorrow’s game…

    …Djourou is out.

    (Sorry, someone just sent me that and it made me laugh)

  81. RockyLives says:

    Kelsey, 26
    West London… :(
    Horrible place.
    I’ve always hated Hammersmith and Shepherds Bush.
    N5 is, for obvious reasons, the best place in London.
    But I grew up in the SE, so feel fondly towards the Woolwich, Charlton, Greenwich, Blackheath areas.

  82. Red Arse says:

    Rocky, :-)

    We were having an intellectual exchange with Stix, and I had to go before I could answer your deeply philosophical question regarding whether a horse could be religious. So this might answer you.

    – A wealthy racehorse owner got very attached to his champion horse.

    It had a very successful racing career and was then retired to stud duties, where it was again very successful, earning a fortune in stud duties.

    Sadly one day the champion died and the owner decided to give it a proper burial.

    He approached the local Anglican minister who told him that he is only interested in saving human souls. So, he then approached the Catholic priest who told him the same thing.

    As a last resort he knocked on the door of the local Rabbi who gave him the same spiel.
    As he was about to leave he said that it was a pity, because he would have donated $100,000 for the burial service.

    ” Hold the ‘phone” said the Rabbi chasing after him, “you never told me it was a Jewish horse!”

    So there is your answer! :-)

  83. RockyLives says:

    Redders :)

    I thought Stix did very well to adapt to the general strangeness of AA, after arriving with a typical one-line critical post.

    Do you live in London Redders?

  84. Red Arse says:

    Rocky,

    As you are a man of taste and an interest in horses, this is for you.

    – A young jockey and his stable lass girlfriend make the decision to get married.

    Everything is planned and the couple intended to honeymoon in Italy for a week. The marriage goes without a hitch and the couple set off on their honeymoon and soon arrived at a wonderful hotel.

    While checking in; the receptionist said:

    “We have two suites available for you, would you like the bridal?”

    “No thanks said the jockey, I’ll just hold onto her ears ’till she gets the hang of it!”

    HeeHeeHee! :-)

  85. RockyLives says:

    You are so naughty Redders :)

    By the way, whenever I try to write “Redders” on my iPhone or iPad, the predictive text always tries to turn it into “Redress”.

    Is this something I should consult my learned friend Mr 26 about?

  86. kelsey says:

    RL,
    we sold our flat to Vanessa Redgrave but only lived in Chelsea for about 5 years.Shepherds Bush Green used to be full of meth drinking tramps literally 24/7.

    RA,

    I was suprised at your knowlege of yiddish, well actually not surprised knowing you ;) but i deliberately left out the word yok yesterday as I personally find it just as a derogatary as the word yid.I remember Spurs as the lillywhites,but anywy we will leave it there.

  87. Red Arse says:

    Kelsey,

    I spent three years with some great guys in the rag trade. They were forever pulling my leg, and I never found them at all offensive!

    I loved the tall, leggy models too — but that is another story. :-)

  88. VCC says:

    Rocky. I was born in latimer road. A stones throw from shepherds bush.

  89. RockyLives says:

    VCC
    And were their stones being thrown when you came into the world?
    In my experience of that part of town that would be quite likely…

  90. RockyLives says:

    Redress
    Did the leggy models pull your leg too? I do hope so…

  91. Red Arse says:

    Rocky,

    Redders – Redress? I think I will be consulting me learned friend 26. You will be hearing from my numerical counselor. :-)

    Now — one minute you are dragging me into discussions on a horses religion, the next you are inviting me into discourse on astro-physical matters such as “do you live in London?”

    Of course, I should question you very closely, to see whether you mean London, England; London, Ontarion; London, Ohio or even London, Kentucky.

    But I won’t, because we both know that Sharkey and his sharklets will come breezing on to tell everyone that I live in La La Land with my friend Frothing Inarticulate Loon!

    The answer to all is – no! :-)

  92. kelsey says:

    “I loved the tall, leggy models too — but that is another story. :-)”

    I didn’t know that jewish guys were into modelling.

  93. Big Raddy says:

    Best thing about Hammersmith was the Odeon. Many a happy spent there and then the Palais.

    Very interesting stats earlier.

  94. gunnern5 says:

    One horse to another.

    Any friend of your’s is a palamino.

  95. RockyLives says:

    Gn5 :)

  96. gunnern5 says:

    I know how to make a small fortune out of horse’s

    Start with a large one.

  97. gunnern5 says:

    My horse has been all round the world.

    A real globe trotter…………..

  98. Red Arse says:

    Kelsey,

    I am not a “people of the book” person, and so I was more into the models and not so much the modelling! :-)

    GN5, Excellent! :-)

  99. gunnern5 says:

    My horse was also in films.

    But he only got bit parts……..

  100. gunnern5 says:

    I first got interested in horses after reading a book by

    Major Bumsore……………

  101. Red Arse says:

    Herb,

    I am disappointed that you have not been around to chat to.

    Got to go and not sure I can make it back. Oh well.

    Rasper, I hope you and your family feel better soon. I had that awful projectile vomiting last December/January. Hope it is not that!

    Sayonara peeps.

  102. kelsey says:

    RA,
    you completely misread my post.I wasn’t assuming that you were jewish.I believe you live west of london is that correct ?

    Shepherds Bush brings back memories.The old White city athletics and dog track which i believe is now the BBC as Brent Cross used to be part of the area used by Hendon dog track.
    Only 2 dog tracks left in london and one of them, walthamstowe thay are trying to save from a housing development.

  103. VCC says:

    Rocky
    My Parents moved away when I was 3, so I wasn’t raised there.
    Went back frequently to visit family though.
    It was ok then, as far as I can remember.
    My Uncle used to look after the away teams dressing room at Loftus Road.

  104. gunnern5 says:

    My dad only bet on strong horses.

    They had to be because they took him, and thousands of others for a ride every time he bet on them…………

  105. gunnern5 says:

    When I was first taught horse riding the hardest part was the ground…………..

  106. Red Arse says:

    I meant to balance up my religious horses …… so before I go;

    A Preacher wanted to raise money for his church and, being told there were fortunes to be made in race horses, he decided to purchase one and enter it in the races.

    However, at the local auction, the going price for horses was so steep he ended up buying a donkey instead. He figured that since he had it, he might as well go ahead and enter it in the races, and to his surprise the donkey came in third.

    The next day the racing sheets carried the headlines,
    “Preacher’s Ass shows”.
    The Preacher was so pleased with the donkey that he entered it in the races again and this time he won! The papers headlines said,
    “Preacher’s Ass out in Front”

    The Bishop was so upset with his vicar and this kind of publicity that he ordered the Preacher not to enter the donkey in another race.

    The next day the newspaper printed this headline,
    “Bishop Scratches Preacher’s Ass”
    This was just too much for the Bishop and he ordered the Preacher to get rid of the animal.

    The Preacher decided to give it to a Nun in a nearby convent. The headline the next day read,
    “Nun has the Best Ass in Town.”
    The Bishop fainted.

    He informed the Nun that she would have to dispose of the donkey and she finally found a farmer who was willing to buy it for $10.00. The paper then ran the headline,
    “Nun Peddles Ass for Ten Bucks”
    They buried the Bishop the next day.

    G’nite :-)

  107. gunnern5 says:

    Why did the horse go behind a tree?

    To change his jockey’s

  108. gunnern5 says:

    Why did the horse miss the jousting contest?

    He took the knight off…………

  109. gunnern5 says:

    I’m going to stop now.

    I’m getting a little hoarse……….

  110. Herb'sArmy says:

    Hi everybody, sorry for the delay, been out all day.
    Thank you all for your generous responses.
    It’s merely self-indulgent nostalga.
    I wasn’t around during Herbert Chapman’s reign, I just remember as a kid, when I became alligned to The Arsenal I wanted to know everything about our great institution.
    The 1930′s was the ‘Great Depression’ – Jarrow marchers etc.), and as football back then was community-based, it had a major social impact.
    Gunner5 – Of course you’re right, George Allison did win those trophies and deserves the credit, but it was Chapman who put it all together to make it possible. As you rightly point out, Man Utd were relegated in 1931, but you can only beat whoever is put in front of you.
    26 – Would never use Chapman to bash Wenger, as I said Wenger has earned his legendary status at Arsenal. It is only opinion, and I’m old-fashioned.
    Regarding the 1927 Cup Final, Cardiff were a decent side back then, and weren’t relegated the same season. Plus Chapman was relatively new in the job and still in the process of building his team, so he deserves to be cut some slack for that.
    You could have made a reference to our FA Cup defeat in 1932, when we lost 2-0 at Walsall. You did uncover something I wasn’t aware of in that he played for Tottenham, but look how he made them suffer as our manager.
    BR – Thanks, I’ve read many fine blood-stirring from yourself, and you do so consistently.
    RA – As I said to 26, it’s only opinion, and given the different time-frames and economic dynamics to compare them like for like is impossible.
    TMHT – We do indeed have a lot to thank Sir Henry Norris for.
    Rasp/Peaches – a big thank-you to you both for editing and making it all happen.
    I agree with everyone who says Chapman and Wenger would have had enormous respect for each other and their football philosophies, and would have spent hours discussing the pro’s and cons of different tactics.
    Good shout Rocky for giving Tom Whittaker an honourable mention.
    Thanks to all of you who have given me an audience and taken the time to respond, it is greatly appreciated.

  111. Big Raddy says:

    Herb. It is us the reader who should give thanks.

    I have a dilemna. I try to be polite about the teams we play and yet there have been occasions when I have let my feelings get the better of me and unfortunately, almost without exception we have lost points.

    Last week I was less than kind to Blackburn and we lost in a bizarre fashion. I took the pee out of the miscreants from OT – we got beat. I pointed out the appalling run by THFC – we got beat,. I stated that WBA have not won in London since Gandhi was in pampers – we got beat.

    Tomorrow we play another of the lteams I have no time for (though Coyle is a breath of fresh air). Do I give it both barrels or write a nice, polite stat filled pre-match?

    Are my pre-matches the Jonah?

  112. kelsey says:

    Go for it Raddy.

  113. Herb'sArmy says:

    BR’
    Your pre-match is a must-read!
    I sets the tone and prepares us for battle. We may get bruised and blooded during the coarse of that battle, but we stand up as one to prepare anf fight the next one.

  114. Herb'sArmy says:

    I* = It

  115. VCC says:

    Go Raddy, Go Raddy. Go Raddy.
    Give it all barrels.
    3-1 to the Arsenal
    Tomorrow is where we start turning our season around.
    No Djourou at the back to cock things up.

  116. Jamie says:

    Do we need a match report for tomorrows game?

    I would be happy to oblige if we are short.

  117. Jamie says:

    Herb- really liked your article. Though I think they are equally blessed.

  118. Hello Jamie – that would be lovely of you to write the match report, thank you. Are you going to the game, come to The Tavern in Blackstock rd to put some faces to names if you’re around xx

  119. kelsey says:

    I will be missing the game tomorrow nowhere near a radio or tv or computer so would like a truthful explicit report,thank you.

  120. Hi friend – where are you going to be then? Where’s Mr Kelsey gone you old rocker you :)

  121. Jamie says:

    What time are you in the tavern. Have to pick ticket up on the way to the ground and meet family inside for two o’clock. Are you guys around before that?

  122. SharkeySure says:

    Well written and nicely balanced read Herb.

    Good education for the younger readers as well !

    I think Arsene wins it by a nose for me, although thats prob based on familiarity

  123. Jamie – I won’t be around before that but Gooner in Exile will be there about 1 he said. chas might be there early too. If you check on the site in the morning someone might have left you a message to meet up ……… otherwise, enjoy the game and thanks for doing the match report.

  124. SharkeySure says:

    Cracking catch up at 6.36 Herb !!

  125. VCC says:

    September 24th, 2011 = Is going to be a Gooner Day.

  126. Herb'sArmy says:

    Cheers Jamie, as I said earlier to compare them like for like is impossible, they’ve both contributed enormously to the great tapestry that is our club.

  127. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Cinders here,
    Boy am I cave aged extra mature cheesed off I’m not coming. Talk of The Morning Big Raddy, The Tavern and a civilised 3pm KO is all a bit much.
    Very jealous of you all.
    BR,
    Both barrels please.

  128. Hello Mr SS – are you going to the game tomorrow?

  129. Poor Cinders, it won’t be the same without you :( Have you chosen your next game yet?

  130. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Sharkey,
    We overlap at last. Hope all good with you. Sadly I’m off. Family stuff calls.

  131. VCC says:

    Hi Cinders, sorry to hear you cannot make the game.
    I have a Saturday off so i will be watching down my local.
    COYR

  132. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Peaches,
    No not yet, but an evening CL game really appeals, which means Olympiakos but that gives me little time to arrange things, so most likely Sunderland.
    Nite all.

  133. Herb'sArmy says:

    Thanks Sharkey, we can’t please all the people all the time, but we all share a common love for The Arsenal, and it’s nice to be able to express it in a way that we can all relate to.

  134. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Liveonlinefootie connected to Telly for me VCC,
    Really off.

  135. RockyLives says:

    One of the benefits of living in Canada is you don’t have to wait so long for the kick-off.

    So for me it’s wake up, breakfast, the essential read of the day (BR’s pre-match), then settle down in front of the screen for a 10am kick-off. :)

    On the down side, not being at the game in person :(

    And not having the chance to join the AA throng at the Tavern :( :(

  136. You can be in my pocket Rocky :)

  137. Seems like I missed a weighty historic post today – my daytime blogging ban sucks !

    Anyhoo – just to say I’m looking forward to the Tavern tomorrow, aim to be there about 1.45ish and settle my PMT(Pre Match Tension) with peronis.

    I see MDi89 is an absentee – who do we have, Peachy, Raspers, Harry and ??

  138. Herb'sArmy says:

    Hi Peaches,
    thanks for today and the opportunity to share space with such esteemed company. It is an honour to represent such a prestigious
    Blog.

  139. VCC says:

    …A little boy gets £10 for his birthday and rushes down to the Sport Shop to
    buy the New Football he has been desperate for. He gets the ball down from
    the rack and gives the shop-keeper his £10.
    “Sorry Son !!” Explains the shopkeeper. “This ball cost £20, but you’ve
    only got £10″.
    Thinking quickly, the boy looks up at the club balls and says “Ok. If you
    blindfold me and I guess the club on the ball will you let me have the ball
    for £10″? The shopkeeper curiously agrees, and blindfolds the boy.
    First up he gives the boy an Arsenal ball.
    “OK” says the boy placing his ear to the ball. “I can hear the blasting
    sound of 2 canons. This must be an Arsenal ball”
    “That was a lucky guess” exclaimed the shopkeeper.
    “Lets try another one” And he hands him a Millwall ball.
    “OK” Says the boy placing his ear to the ball again. “I can hear a pack of
    rampant Lions. It must be a Millwall ball”.
    “Christ” Says the shopkeeper.
    “If you get the next one right I’ll let you have the ball for nothing” and
    he passes him another ball.

    Again the boy puts the ball to his ear and after a few moments he exclaims
    “That’s a Tottenham ball”.

    “Holly Mary Mother Of God” Shouts the shopkeeper.”How on earth did you get
    that one. I suppose you heard a Cockerell crowing??”

    “No” Said the boy. “It’s going down”!!!

  140. RockyLives says:

    Ooh Peaches
    You’ve made me go all of a shiver…

  141. Big Raddy says:

    VCC. Top work :-)

  142. RockyLives says:

    Excellent joke VCC :)

  143. VCC says:

    A Primary Teacher explains to her class that she is a Liverpool fan.
    > She asks her students to raise their hands if they too are Liverpool fans.
    > Everyone in the class raises their hand except one little girl.
    > The teacher Looks at the girl with surprise and says, ‘Mary, why didn’t you
    > raise your Hand?’
    > ‘Because I’m not a Liverpool fan,’ she replied.
    > The teacher, still shocked, asked, ‘Well, if you are not a Liverpool fan,
    > then who are you a fan of?’
    > ‘I am a Man Utd fan, and proud of it,’ Mary replied.
    > The teacher could not believe her ears. ‘Mary, why, pray tell, are you a
    > Man Utd fan?’
    > ‘Because my mum is a Man Utd fan, and my dad is a Man Utd fan, so I’m a Man Utd fan too!’
    > ‘Well,’ said the teacher in an obviously annoyed tone, ‘that is no reason
    > for you to be a Man Utd fan.
    > You don’t have to be just like your parents all of the time.
    > What if your mum was a prostitute and your dad was a drug addict, what
    > would you be then?’
    > ‘Then,’ Mary smiled, ‘I’d be a Liverpool fan.

  144. SharkeySure says:

    I like you Vic (it always looks like Vic to me)

    Alas MIDI, our paths do not cross this evening. I’ll be here pre match tomorrow…hopefully

    Double alas PeachySue/RavenHairedWarrior/She who must be feared and obeyed – I’m not at the game tomorrow.

    Just google a pic of Sylvain Wiltord, print it and and take that along. That ‘ll have to do you I’m afraid.

  145. VCC says:

    nite nite all.
    Off to bed, early start 2moz.
    Full English breakky, followed by the Saturday red tops, then Raddys pre match report, then down the local to watch my beloved Arsenal beat Bolton 3-1. Woop Woop.
    Come on you Arsenal.

  146. SharkeySure says:

    I was trying find a classic gorilla joke but found this instead:

    A guy decides that maybe he’d like to have a pet and goes to a pet shop.

    After looking around he spots a parrot sitting on a little perch; it doesn’t have any feet or legs. The guy says out loud, “Geez, I wonder what happened to this parrot?”

    “I was born this way,” says the parrot. “I’m a defective parrot.”

    “Ha, ha,” the guy laughs. “It sounded like this parrot actually understood what I said and answered me.”

    “I understand every word,” says the parrot. “I am a highly intelligent and thoroughly educated bird.”

    “Yeah?” the guy asks. “Then answer this: how do you hang onto your perch without any feet?”

    “Well,” the parrot says, “this is a little embarrassing, but since you asked, I will tell you. I wrap my little parrot penis around this wooden bar, kind of like a little hook. You can’t see it because of my feathers.”

    “Wow,” says the guy, “you really can understand and answer; can’t you?”

    “Of course. I speak both Spanish and English. I can converse with reasonable competence on almost any subject: politics, religion, sports, physics, philosophy. And I am especially good at ornithology. You should buy me; I am a great companion.”

    The guy looks at the $200.00 price tag. He says. “I can’t afford that.”

    “Pssst,” the parrot hisses, motioning the guy over with one wing. “Nobody wants me because I don’t have any feet. You can get me for $20.00; just make an offer.”

    The guy offers twenty dollars and walks out with the parrot. Weeks go by and the parrot is sensational. He’s funny; he’s interesting; he’s a great pal, he understands everything, sympathizes, and gives good advice. The guy is delighted.

    One day the guy comes home from work and the parrot says, “Pssst,” and motions him over with one wing. The guy goes up close to the cage. “I don’t know if I should tell you this or not,” says the parrot, “but it’s about your girlfriend and the mailman.”

    “What?” asks the guy.

    “Well,” the parrot says, “when the mailman came to the door today, your gf greeted him in underwear that showed everything and kissed him on the mouth.”

    “What happened then?” asks the guy.

    “Then the mailman came into the house and put his hand on her crotch and began petting her all over,” reports the parrot.

    “My God!” the guy says. “Then what?”

    “Then he pulled down her panties and got down on his knees and began to lick her, starting on her chest, slowly going down and down.” The parrot pauses for a long time…

    “What happened? What happened?” says the frantic guy.
    “That’s what pisses me off. I don’t know.” said the parrot. “I got a hard-on, and fell off my fucking perch.”

  147. SharkeySure says:

    One of my all time fave gags…

    Two gay gentlemen are walking through a zoo. They come across the gorillas and after a while they notice that the male gorilla has a massive erection.

    The gay men are fascinated by this. One of the men just can’t bear it any longer and he reaches into the cage to touch it. The gorilla grabs him, drags him into the cage and mates with him for six hours nonstop. When he’s done, the gorilla throws the man back out of the cage.

    An ambulance is called and the man is taken away to the hospital. Next day his friend visits him in the hospital and asks, “Are you hurt?”

    “AM I HURT?”, he shouts, “Wouldn’t you be? He hasn’t called, he hasn’t sent a card…

    Nite all

  148. oz gunner says:

    @ RA

    What about?

    London, Ontario, a city in Canada
    London, Belize, a village
    London, Equatorial Guinea, a village
    London, Finland, a section of Jakobstad
    London, Kiribati, a small city on Kiritimati
    London, Nigeria, a village
    London, Limpopo, a village in South Africa
    London, Mpumalanga (Noordprovincie) in South Africa
    London, Mpumalanga (Graskop) in South Africa
    London, Conecuh County, Alabama, an unincorporated community
    London, Montgomery County, Alabama, an unincorporated community
    London, Arizona, an unincorporated community
    London, Arkansas, a city
    London, California, a census-designated place
    London, Indiana, an unincorporated community
    London, Kentucky, a city
    London, Michigan, an unincorporated community
    London, Minnesota, an unincorporated community
    London, Missouri, an unincorporated community
    London, Ohio, a city
    London, Richland County, Ohio, an unincorporated community
    London, Oregon, an unincorporated community
    London, Pennsylvania, an unincorporated community
    London, Tennessee, an unincorporated community
    London, Texas, an unincorporated community
    London, West Virginia, an unincorporated community
    London, Wisconsin, an unincorporated community

  149. oz gunner says:

    @ Sharkey

    cracking joke that one…you really are the Sharkspeare of this blog!

    I’ll get my anorak

  150. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Herb,

    Its very late but ive managed to sneak away from the wife and the kids. Your question about 2 great managers fills me with pride and i know with pepole like you following the club were in safe hands.

  151. goonermichael says:

    When I manage to get on a pc in Japan you`re all asleep. Gutted about Jack. Just read he`s out til at least January.

  152. pat says:

    FAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARK!

    This injury stuff is doing my head in.

  153. goonermichael says:

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/football/15031918.stm

    Imagine if this was an Arsenal player. The stick we`d get would be unbelieveable If Wenger said what fergiescum said he`d be burnt at the stake.

  154. goonermichael says:

    While I`m here (talking to myself) the daily mirror are fast replacing the scum as the most anti Arsenal paper. The shit they write about us is getting pathetic. Hope they all go to prison for phone tapping.

  155. goonermichael says:

    It`s pretty warm here too Kelsey :)

  156. oz gunner says:

    GM your kidding, we are clearly the best at predicting return dates!

  157. oz gunner says:

    if he had surgery from the start (after the international match he would be back by now), its looking alot familar to verms recovery. Do we really have one of the best medical facilities in the world or do we have a bunch of witch doctors who chant and blow smoke on it.

  158. Big Raddy says:

    Oz. Good point. The club know the fans will be very unhappy about JW’s treatment so far, and not just the fans, AW and Capello as well. That is why the press statement is more about the “world re-nowned” doctors treating him than about JW.

    Following JW’s tweet that he hoped to be back for Marseilles at home it is a blow coming when at a time we really do not need one.

  159. oz gunner says:

    Exactly BR,
    Yes i know people don’t like surgery but with technology the way it is these days it really isn’t as risky as its made to be believed. How many athletes in pre-seasons go for knee and shoulder clear outs and come back fighting fit for pre-season?! Yet we stall and it never works out good for us in the end. Jack was going to be the one who drove us through this mess, but now its just more bad news.See you next season jack the lad

  160. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Morning all,
    January!!!!! Oh bollocks.

  161. MickyDidIt89 says:

    In many ways its Verm we need back in his boots faster, and last I read, AW expects him after the Internationals which means Sunderland. With Spurs looming and only two games to gel, we cannot afford an injury/suspension to Mert or Kos. I still can’t believe Arsene did not play them in the CC to get that essential understanding.

  162. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Is Ramsey injured?

  163. London says:

    Morning all

    On my way to the Ems on Tuesday I was just coming out of a café not too far from the Che Guevara pub, holding an espresso when no other than Vermaelen was right there in front of me, I mean face to face at a distance of one yard. It was quite odd, having seen him so many times there was an accidental feeling of knowing him personally, to the point where I was just about to say: hey Tom how’s the leg, when can we expect you back, fortunately I came to my senses and let him get on with his business without being hassled by yet another fan. Anyway I can report that he was walking perfectly normally and that he is about 5′ 11″………..goodness knows how he can jump so high.

  164. London says:

    No Ramsey isn’t injured, Wilshere is out until Christmas, Benayoun is out today, Rosicky is back.

  165. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Hi London,
    Nice story. The Che is somewhere I go post matches if I’m going with my West Stand chums. Stop off point for an hour until Holloway Road opens.
    Thanks for injury update. That confuses my team selection. Ramsey, Song, Arteta I guess.

  166. Fatgingergooner says:

    Micky, u say that we can’t afford another defensive injury but then wonder why we didn’t play Koz n Merts in CC! I know they need to gel, but that can be done on the training ground. Keeping them fit for the league and CL games has to be priority right now.

    Gutted about Jack. He is key for us and really needed right now. Another case of Arsenal bad luck or just shit medical team? I would like to think it’s just bad luck but this is becoming too regular to blame it on the gods. There must be a reason why this keeps happening

  167. MickyDidIt89 says:

    FGG,
    I did think that little catch 22 through, but decided, as I’ve always felt, that understanding between the back three (GK, CB’s) is everything and we plainly will continue to concede until that is established. It would have been a risk, but we have Verm back in a couple of weeks and right now we cannot play it safe. In my humblish opinion.

  168. oz gunner says:

    i agree micky, we need that gelling process to speed up, at times i think we rotate too much and we never get that set starting lineup. I know we have had injury problems for an eternity now but sometimes its odd things like diaby playing two games, then he gets rested! rested or not diaby is going to get injured so best off to get the most out of him while we can.

    Does anyone think if coq and frimpocontinue to improve itd be a good idea to swing song to CB. Hes been very good in that position before and wegner has said in the past thats where he sees him lining up

  169. Fatgingergooner says:

    Micky,

    Is he back in a couple of weeks? Or is it Christmas, or march, or pre season!!???

    Knowing our medical staff as we all do, we will probably end up with some kind of human centipede formed from our injured players!!!!

  170. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Oz,
    Interesting thought, but my feelings are twofold. Firstly, our three first choice CB’s are Mert, Verm and Kos so I would crack on playing them whenever possible. Secondly, Song gets better and better on the attacking side of his play so in line with your thoughts on Coq and Frimpong (which I entirely agree with) then I would leave Song in midfield.

  171. MickyDidIt89 says:

    FGG,
    Fair points :-)

  172. oz gunner says:

    I agree for the time being, but say in two years time i think frimpong and coq could surpass song as a DM and they won’t stick around as 2nd and 3rd choice DM. If coqs game was anything to go by during the week then his attacking game could be far superior to that of songs. Loved that bit of skill he used to get to the by-line and then cut back to MC

  173. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Looking forward to seeing the BR line up. Will he go with two of Song, Frimpong or Coquelin and if not then which two. Ramsey, Arteta and Rosicky being the options. I hope we go with a very attacking line up and really take the game to them right from the off.

  174. Fatgingergooner says:

    Oz,

    Interesting idea, and if Songs positional sense is good enough then I’ve no doubt he could be a good CB. Problem is, it would send an awful message to an already fragile back 4. They need confidence which can only come from clean sheets and playing together. For me, once TV is fit, our defensive problems disappear. He’s that good.

  175. chas says:

    Morning all,

    FGG,
    I think you just summed up the season so far. :)

  176. oz gunner says:

    well said micky, i hope its song/art/ram and we blow them out of the water like we should of done to rovers last week. then bring on coq and close it down about and fizz around the ground with his high energy. Mert vs Davies will be interesting, i bet he will move over to koz and swing elbows and dive in recklessly and get away with it as usual

  177. oz gunner says:

    No doubt FGG hes is a rock and lifts players when hes around. I don’t mean at presence because ideally we need to get those three playing together as much as possible and playing on the same terms. Then again its so hard pleasing everyone when we don’t pay wages through the nose like man city. Miquel and bartley coming through, coq and frim things are looking up

  178. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Peeeachess, we are waaaiting

  179. oz gunner says:

    yeah peaches come on now, time is of the essence haha

  180. Morning, sorry I was waiting for Rasp to put the pitch layout in but you know what ………….. I’m gonna publish without it :) hang on a min

  181. New Post …………………………

  182. Gooner in Exile says:

    Morning all, haven’t had a chance to read comments, but have read post, an interesting debate starter Herb,

    Just a quick check in to say top marks to 26 on recommendation of Indigo, lovely meal.

    Just on way out to brekkie, see everyone at Tavern

  183. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Peaches,
    We shall naturally assume that Raddy meant 4-4-2 :-)

  184. old time gunner says:

    Big Raddy

    I take your point about Toure and Campbell in central defence but you conveniently forget about the other centre backs AW has signed, Luhzny ( who was also a poor right back) Stepanovs, Senderos, Djourou, Upson (good but not good enough for us) Squillaci, Koscielny, Silvestre and Gallas (who had a reputation for causing trouble at Chelsea so AW not only signed him but made him captain which, I believe was the reason Toure and Nasri became disenchanted before the money enticed them north. Personally I will never forgive AW for the 6-1 thrashing at Old Trafford with Stepanovs in charge of the defence, let alone the 8-2 debacle.

    You also mention Lehmann and forget his frequent rushes of blood to the head which caused us problems, not least in the Champions League final against Barcelona. Before him we had Manninger and Richard Wright when we ought to have signed Van De Sar from Juventus but instead he went to Fulham. We then got Almunia from the Spanish 2nd division!!

    Under AW we have reached incredible highs and incredible lows. Note that Fergie wins the double or treble and then signs a couple of players to strengthen the team. Under him the Invincibles would have gone from strength to strenth.

    I am also presuming that the Franny Jeffers debacle is preventing AW from signing English players and this is the reason we have never bought anyone from West Ham who have one of the best youth systems. In the period that Ashley Cole necame the only top class player to come throught our system (I don’t include youngsters we poached at 16/17/18 years of age such as Fabregas, Pennant, Walcott etc)they produced Rio Ferdinand who went to Leeds, Lampard and Joe Cole to Chelsea, Carrick to Spurs who have all performed well for club and country.

    Having said all that AW is probably on a par with HC but possibly only because HC died. Ancelotti, De Boer/Bergkamp, Guardiola and Paul Lambert (a Champions League winner) could be better than either one of them

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