Brittania Revisited

A third trip to the Britannia in three seasons brought with it some mixed emotions. The 2009/10 game was played in February, a month after being beaten by the Stokies in the 4th round of the FA Cup. Ramsey’s leg snapped like a twig but the team responded magnificently to record a fine 3-1 victory.

2010/11 at the Britannia saw Arsenal in end of season free-fall and another defeat ensued. What would 2012 bring? Stoke always raise their game against us, refusing to lie down to superior footballing ability. The touchlines are narrowed, local aircraft given warnings of possible collisions with footballs and Corporal Jones from Dad’s Army gives the pre-match, rabble-rousing speech. Could Arsenal resist the bite of the cold steel? Anxious and expectant, the Arsenal away fans gathered in the Potteries.

(photo courtesy of Stuart MacFarlane)

After an easy drive along the A50 we arrived in plenty of time to find a parking spot at a local bowls club which would enable a smooth getaway at the end of the game. A brief chat with a couple of Stokies in the pub before the game elicited the information that they were pleased not to be in Europe again as it had ruined their season. Mid-table mediocrity seemed to be the height of their ambition…..oh, and beating Wenger’s Arsenal, of course. Arsenal are lacking a player who puts his foot in was their considered opinion whereas none of their players minded being kicked!

We had a fairly good view but were much too close to the inbred hoards and soon realised the aggression between the two sets of supporters was going to colour how we would remember the game.

The first half began and it soon became obvious that only one team had any desire to play any real football. The first booking came in the first couple of minutes as Whitehead fouled Song. The Gunners began the game at a canter and Benayoun should have done better, scuffing a left foot shot after clever interplay with Robin. Then it was the Dutchman himself who drew a fine save from Begovic with a glanced header at the near post.

Stoke scored from their first effort on goal with a pinpoint cross from Etherington which found the head of the Human Pylon. Even with Vermaelen and Koscielny leaping front and back of Crouch, they still stood little chance of stopping the goal. “One Nil to the Rugby team” sang the Stoke crowd. If I was a Rugby player, I would have been offended.

Arsenal quickly responded with another straightforward goal in its simplicity, van Persie slotting home after good work from Rosicky. “He scores when he want” and “By far the greatest team” followed.

The first half petered out from that point onwards. Gervinho had a chance to shoot after a lovely through ball from Sagna but put his effort way over the bar. Another chance nearly came to Gervinho who just failed to get his immense forehead onto a whipped-in cross.

My brother went for a half-time pie and heard the following conversation in the queue in front him. Arsenal supporter, ‘What flavour pies have you got?’ Girl behind the counter, ‘Chicken Balti, Steak and Ale…. Arsenal Supporter, ‘Have you got any Meat and Potato? ‘Yes’ came the reply. Arsenal fan, ‘I had one of those last year and it was farkin horrible’. Cue the laughter from the serving assistants behind the counter. The news that Newcastle were getting thumped certainly improved the atmosphere behind the goal during the half-time break.

The second half began with the boys kicking towards us. Surely things would improve and we would earn the crucial three points. As far as the football is concerned, I thought the second forty five was pretty poor. Arsenal probed and prodded. Shots were blocked. Robin slipped on a couple of occasions when he might have sneaked a shot on goal. There were a few decent looking free-kick opportunities for the good guys but none really troubled the Stoke keeper.

At the other end Szczesny made a fine blocking save from a vicious drive and a long throw header was cleared close to the Arsenal goal line. There was a brief rendition of ‘We can’t spell his name, we can’t spell his name, Wojciech Szczęsny, we can’t spell his name’.

The other dominant impression from standing behind the goal in the second half was how hideous the Stoke fans were. They finally found their voice after Shawcross lunged in on Benayoun. They sang ‘He breaks things when he wants, he breaks things when he wants, Ryan Shawcross, he breaks things when he wants’. (It could have been ‘legs’ rather than ‘things’, it was difficult to understand the accent). Looking across at their fans there were gestures of breaking a stick in two hands which I found quite sickening. Hideous miscreants.

Yossi had a good shout for a penalty ignored by Foy who looked across at his linesman to see a totally blank expression and so he waved play on. The last twenty minutes were a pantomime starring Arsene Wenger. He began waving his arms in the air at the injustice of the penalty decision and other decisions which followed. The Stoke crowd began to imitate him by waving their arms in the air at every opportunity while singing, ‘ Let’s all do the Wenger’ and if an Arsenal player committed a foul singing, ‘He didn’t see a thing, he didn’t see a thing , Arsene Wenger, he didn’t see a thing.’

Arsène needed someone to tell him to sit down as he may as well have been the Stoke cheerleader, such was his influence in stirring the Stoke crowd to generate more noise.

At the final whistle, I felt disappointed that we hadn’t been able to rise above the overall poor quality of the game and produce a few moments of real class to win us the three points. A hard-fought point would have to suffice, a point which looks better in the light of Newcastle’s zero points. Whether it’ll look so good after Sunday’s fixtures, only time will tell.

Ratings

I don’t really do ratings but I’d say that Benayoun and Rosicky seemed to have decent first halves. The defence were resolute throughout, Sagna looking dangerous assisting the attack in the first half, too. Szczesny couldn’t do much about the goal. Sometimes I wish he would catch instead of punch, especially in the second half when the aerial bombardment was in full force. I’d probably give them all a 7, with Tomas, Yossi and Bacary 7.5.

P.S. The Man of the Match was announced over the tannoy as Dean Whitehead. Sums it all up really!

Written by chas

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230 Responses to Brittania Revisited

  1. Gooner In Exile says:

    Thanks for the first hand reports Chas.

    The fans of Stoke were using the same snapping gestures last year at the Ems just before the carling cup final. I would really like one year for one of their players to get done….maybe it would shut them up.

    As for the game I can’t argue with your assessment.

  2. Thanks for the post chas, I can cope with the lack of sparkling football if we drag ourselves over the line but will be very upset if the scum suddenly find some form and overtake us. We were the team in form until QPR and now we’ve lost our edge a bit and the next two games are crucial wins.

    As you say, the Newcastle result lifted the spirits and if the results go our way today we can say we won yesterday anyway :)

  3. Gooner In Exile says:

    Gooner In Exile says:
    April 29, 2012 at 9:49 am  (Edit)
    Morning all.

    Come on Blackburn!

    Chavs, Spuds and Toon will all be equal games played by the time we take on Norwich next Saturday so we will see where we need to be.

    Spuds have kindest run in altho all teams chasing only have to drop
    2 points to leave us needing 3 to secure 3rd. It’s good we will know where the catch up games have left everyone by Saturday next week.

    Spuds
    Blackburn (h)
    Bolton (a)
    Villa (a)
    Fulham (h)

    Chavs
    QPR (h)
    Toon (h)
    Liverpool (a)
    Blackburn (h)

    Toon
    Chavs (a)
    ManC (h)
    Everton (a)

    Should be said only one of Chavs or Toon can get maximum points.

  4. goonermichael says:

    Thanks for the great post chas. we’re a point better off against our nearest rivals. No top 6 team apart from newcastle have won there so it’s no big deal. Foy was a (expletive) lineker was a total expletive expletive on motd last night. That programme has gone so far downhill it’s below sea level.

  5. dandan says:

    Nice post Chas, hostile mob up their when “soft southerners” are around.

    The rest was written for adding to this mornings conversation.

    Morning all, Peaches if Rasp. is cricketing today I hope his Solo is up to scratch or it could cost him a few bob. :-) The wicket will be like your garden. Mickey just had scrambled egg and Marmite toast. How sad are we. The Water outside my house is up over a 3″ kerb and it is still raining.

    Funny how the run in is always so fraught, has anyone thought that its because we are always in reach of something important, last year it was the league, this year third place with Chelski stirring the pot because of their involvement in the CL and maybe nullifying fourth place. Shows just how successful we are as a club or else this time of the year would be plain dull and all done, nothing like that for the Arse, two games to go and both cup finals. How lucky are we.

  6. Gooner In Exile says:

    Both Chavs and Spuds will probably win today but I fancy neither to take all three at toon and Villa away respectively.

    Then Toon have City who off still in it after Monday night will be unstoppable.

  7. Big Raddy says:

    chas. Thank you. Much respect to you and the away fans who out sung the Orcs throughout the game. Their football is so poor there is nothing to cheer, so in a way I understand their need to get enjoyment where they can – in this case mimicking AW.

    After all, you have the advantage of going home to a pleasant place – they live in Stoke

  8. Big Raddy says:

    GIE. Toon are gone, yesterday was the end of their challenge. They have done well to get so close.

    The Chavs will undoubtedly concentrate all their efforts on the 2 Finals. So we can discount them.

    It is the Spuds who are our competition. but if we get 4 points from the 2 games, they must win all theirs. Should be exciting.

  9. dandan – Rasp is playing cricket next Saturday so he’ll be missing the Norwich game.

    Raddy – exciting it might be but I’d much rather have the points already in the bag and be watching the others scrambling for their targets. Bit of a wimp me :)

  10. evonne says:

    Chas – thank you for the fine report.It is not exactly how I remember the game, but you are the eye witness, so I believe you!

    Fair play to you and Ant for going there and cheering for our boys. The support was pretty loud, considering that Britannia’s capacity is about 36k and yet they are the loudest supporters in EPL. Yet Arsenal away fans were not silenced yesterday, well done mate!

    The picture of the gnom above is gross, totally gross. Give me Meireles any day :)

  11. evonne says:

    First Bale and now Modric said they want to leave in the summer

  12. mickydidit89 says:

    Chas,
    Love the pie story as it adds a really personal flavour of the away day experience. That chanting is on such a sub-normal intelligence level, its as incredible as it is disgusting.
    Any points dropped by Spuds and Chavs before next weekend, and it could be a great end of term party at home to Norwich.

  13. Just seen on twitter that Diaby is out for the rest of the season and the Euros with a hamstring injury :( Poor Diaby

  14. Haven’t seen MOTD, what did Lineker do?

  15. mickydidit89 says:

    Peaches,
    Good news. The 10 day forecast says rain next saturday. Cricket off. Rasp is coming to the party.

  16. mickydidit89 says:

    Evonne,
    Hope the knee has unsiezed itself. As for your Bale and Modric news, it would be funny if it weren’t so tragic.
    Actually, correction, it is very funny :-)

  17. mickydidit89 says:

    I say all over to Micky’s for the day.
    You lot get the logs in and light the fires. I’ll go to Waitrose and get some chickens to roast. We’ll have a re-run of ’89 before lunch, followed by Cockleshell Heroes this afternoon.

  18. mickydidit89 says:

    dandan,
    Boiled eggs and soldiers. Scrambled indeed :-(

  19. Big Raddy says:

    Sad for Diaby. He needs to be sold.

    It must be so frustrating for him and the medical team

  20. Big Raddy says:

    Micky. Book me a chair by the fire . May not make it for lunch though.

  21. dandan says:

    Mickey dont knock it till you have tried it :-)

  22. mickydidit89 says:

    Raddy,
    Leg or breast? I’ll save you some.
    dandan,
    Oh alright :-)

  23. evonne says:

    Re Diaby – both he and Eduardo, and Alan Smith and many others have never fully recovered from broken legs injuries. That’s one of the reason I adore Ramsey and his fight to get back ; says a lot about his character. Top man.

    Micky – sounds like a perfect day, enjoy! Are you not going to watch spuds?

  24. dandan says:

    BR cant understand this wish to sell Diaby because of his injuries he is a talent. RVP was equally injury prone and look at him now. A complete pre season will hopefully see him up and running. Could be next year is his year.

  25. mickydidit89 says:

    True story about the Cockleshell Heroes.
    A mate of mine around here is a Colonel in The Royal Marines and last year went to Bordeaux to unveil a commemorative statue for the raid. He was introduced to a woman in her late 90’s. Her and her sister had put up two marine survivors in a barn. Caught by the Germans, she escaped, while her sister and family were sent to a concentration camp where they died. My chum was totally overcome with emotion just telling me about her story and their meeting.

  26. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Thanks Chas, great to read a report from someone who was there.

    Ive just seen the Lineker clip and my loathing of the man has gone up a level. Ive always disliked the wanker, and anyone who has had the misfortune to ever meet the tosser, as i have will understand what i mean. Been a computer numpty ime not capable of placing a link of it here, but there is a direct complain to the bbc link on another site were i have vented my spleen.

    If i ever meet Lineker in the street i fear i might end up as a guest in one of her majestys fine penal instutions. Take it from me, forget about Pullis and stoke fans, if any one deserves a good old fashioned east end beating its that twat Lineker.

  27. mickydidit89 says:

    TMHT,
    I think you speak on behalf of the Nation.

  28. evonne says:

    Terry – what did he do?

  29. mickydidit89 says:

    Ok, you’ve all gone out to buy chickens and videos haven’t you?
    Later.

  30. Rasp says:

    Morning all, thanks for the excellent match report chas – I’m not sure I envy you going to that particular away game :?

    I didn’t actually watch all the game – I had played it out in my mind beforehand and then the team acted it out in familiar style on the pitch.

    There are some interesting observations regarding expectations of Arsenal. I would have put my house on a draw or loss. Many Arsenal supporters profess to be happy with a draw from the game. The bookies don’t give money away and they all had Arsenal as favourites – which is what we should be.

    Some would say we have been very unlucky this season. I would say that in some ways we have been very lucky. If RvP had been out for his usual 15 games we’d be mid table. For a club of our size to have Chamakh as second striker is an absolute joke.

    Some believe Chamakh did OK when he came on – and he did for a midfielder whose job is to link play….. but as a striker he failed dismally. How many chances on goal did he create? How many shots did he have?

    Podolski (or similar) is essential for next season, but if we lose RvP in the process we will have taken a step backwards.

    What is also patently obvious is that we need an attacking midfield playmaker and those don’t come cheap, and not within Arsenal’s budget so it means that one of the existing midfielders will have to step it up a notch or two or we will continue to struggle to unlock 10 man defences.

  31. Rasp says:

    Cue the Barcelona quote about unlocking obdurate defences.

  32. VCC says:

    Micky…. I can bring my box set of Band of Brothers for evening viewing.

    I’m hoping to watch it in peace next week while i’m off work.

    I went to the Normandy beaches last year and thoroughly enjoyed it.

    We stayed in a cheet and the guy who owned it had lots of memorabilia, including the model bust of the guy who is lying dead at the foot of a tree in one of the Band of Brothers scene’s. It was so life like.

    He even had a working cannon (just like the one on our badge) in his grounds.

    I don’t mind what part of the chicken I have as long as there is plenty of Spitfire to drink.

  33. Quite a good debate going on on twitter about Diaby. His contract is until 2015 so unless someone wants to buy him we’d have to buy him out of his contract to release him – I think I got that right.

  34. I like the dark bits micky – being a mummy it’s usually what’s left ;) Shall I bring desert – Ben and Jerry’s ok?

  35. chas says:

    Thanks everyone.

    Here’s Lineker. I missed it last night as I turned off before the 0-0.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?&v=c8HuZUnItQw

  36. Rasp says:

    Thanks chas, it’s such a shame Lineker chose to play the fool because he had portrayed himself as a serious journalist in the Walker’s adverts :roll: …. substitute the ‘l’ for an ‘n’ in Walkers

  37. Red Arse says:

    Hi Chas,

    Thoroughly enjoyed your report!
    Yet another string to your bow;
    “Ace AA reporter Chas reporting from the hell hole of the Black Country!” :-)

    I can’t really disagree with anything you said re the game.

    I thought that Diaby had received a kick on the ankle, by the touchline, when he pulled up towards the end of the game.
    Surprised it turned out to be a hammy! :-(

  38. Red Arse says:

    DanDan,

    I had a very nice Chinese meal last night, and was surprised when I saw Dan Dan Noodles on the menu. Very nice, thank you. :-)

    Then in the Sunday Times Magazine (I know you subscribe) there, in the “recipe” section, was, — guess what? — yes, a recipe for DD Noodles.

    Just like the proverbial bus — none for ages and suddenly two turn up………

  39. goonermichael says:

    Diaby isn’t like RVP or Rosicky. RVP has had a lot of injuries due to being kicked (with longish spells in between) Rosicky had a vary rare type of injury that involved removing and re-attaching a muscle Diaby can’t string 2 games together. I don’t think we should give him a squd number next season to free it for a new signing.

  40. goonermichael says:

    lineker is a big eared spud expletive expletive

  41. Nice of you to pop in gm – I’ve seen ya chatting away on twitter wiv ya new mates :)

    Good idea not to give Diaby a squad number and see what happens in the first part of the season.

  42. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi Chas,

    Thanks for a very fine match report :)

    Whilst reading it I could smell, taste and hear the match, which made it very enjoyable. You are excellent in witnessing and describing the pure footie experiences, which brings a nice, new dimension to match reporting. You should do it more regularly, top stuff! :)

  43. LB says:

    Respect to you Chas

    It’s the details like the pie story at half time that makes your match reports so special.

  44. VCC says:

    Lineker is a KNOB.

    Just the same as Sherringham.

  45. goonermichael says:

    I really dislike sturridge what was that celebration? wanker

  46. goonermichael says:

    Hi Peaches I’ve always liked DDM. He’s negative sometimes but funny and doesn’t get nasty.

  47. goonermichael says:

    Is it really bad to wish death on another human being? is terry a human being?

  48. He is funny gm and always includes me in his ff’s

  49. goonermichael says:

    chav fans singing (anton anton what’s the score?) classy

  50. dandan says:

    Red Arse.
    Unfortunately that DD is an abbreviation of Digestively Disconackerating a condition that causes a constant pain in the butt that refuses to go away. Sound Familiar :-)

  51. dandan says:

    Why the hell cant I make my mind up I want Sparky in the second division, but I dont want Chelski on a high, bloody football. 4 0 up after 24 minutes I ask yer,

  52. dandan – was just thinking exactly the same thing :lol:

  53. Looking at twitter, it seems the humbling of Hughes and the equally disgusting Joey Barton is the plan for today

  54. dandan says:

    Sounds good to me Peaches

  55. dandan says:

    Peaches 1:57 Oh so you do think I am a pain in the butt. OK I dont need tell ing twice :-(

  56. goonermichael says:

    That is actually the plan b now that plan a has gone peaches

  57. goonermichael says:

    It’s a plan though :)

  58. evonne says:

    Dandan and Peaches – how many times did I do a Balottelli – Why me??! Why can’t I be like other women my age, look forward to weekends and shopping on a high street, see Barry Manilow at Wembley and cry watching Gone with the Wind,. Maybe even make some Dandan noodles for sunday lunch?

    Instead I subject myself to constant agony, waiting, nerve wrecking finales, getting over yet another disappointment. We are doomed my friends.

    GM – perfectly ok to wish JT dead

    From now on I hate Linekar the big front bottom

  59. dandan says:

    Only one cure for that Evonne run off with a gooner and show him yer noodles.

  60. evonne says:

    no Dandan, I’ve been there, I’ve done that, I am ok on my own :)

    Is your wife fully recovered now?

  61. dandan says:

    Unfortunately she is having a very bad weekend Evonne, it is most frustrating for her, severe chest pains keep coming back, she will see the DR again tomorrow but it is hard on her as they can only say that it is the Pneumonia. !!!!

  62. evonne says:

    sorry to hear that Dandan. I truly sympathise with both sufferers and carers, heartbreaking. At least she has you :)

    A long time ago a very wise old jewish gentleman told me ‘Only old people deserve to be young’. He was so right, I never valued my health and only now that I am falling apart I realised what a precious gift that is. Please wish Pani Ania all the very best

  63. dandan – you know perfectly well I was referring to your 1.56 :)

  64. ‘Run off with a gooner and show him your noodles’ now why didn’t I think of that :P

  65. evonne says:

    Peaches – you did think of it, actually, despite me telling you it’s a bad idea :)

  66. evonne says:

    Torres thinks he found his shooting boots, pssshhh…

  67. VCC says:

    I hope Abramovich wins F— All.

  68. We’re such a kindly lot aren’t we :lol:

    We haven’t even started on those other scummers yet …….bring it on

  69. Rasp says:

    The chav GD is improving all the time. Its now 23 (only 1 behind us), we will know by thursday how important the Norwich game is as the tots and chavs have their games in hand this week

  70. goonermichael says:

    If the chavs get third 4th will be ok so GD for them isn’t that big an issue

  71. Rasp says:

    I agree GM. We’ll know the various scenarios after wednesday, but us and the chavs getting 3rd and 4th in any order is now the best possible case scenario unless the toon manage to beat the chavs

  72. goonermichael says:

    Best scenario is us getting third Fthe others spuds wouldn’t get through a qualifier

  73. spanishgooner says:

    Ray Wilkins has just said , when talking about Torres “he has this amazing ability to run behind defenders”. Did I hear that right ? Amazing ability !! Not only does he look like a knob head – – !

  74. goonermichael says:

    If blackburn win 4 nil QPR will be in the dropzone

  75. goonermichael says:

    Wearing an Arsenal shirt at home/hotel. If he leaves it will be becuse the board want to cash in

  76. jnyc says:

    Chas, i thought your summary very accurate, and thanks for bringing the flavour of the stadium too.
    to me rosicky looked especially great, motm. Or koz. I still think to get the best out of him next season, he needs to not be overplayed, so i want a creative am who can take most or half the time there, maybe someone who can score a bit too? And, gervinho was being criticized alot but- as usual i thought he was active, helped on defense, but. VERY poor finishing again. He must work on
    that.
    i think we actually played better yesterday than most
    of the past few weeks, just a little unfortunate.
    i know stoke away is tough, but in the context of the past few results, still disappointing. This is not a good way to crawl towards the finish line. And it doesnt help the cause of convincing rvp to stay. He really is focused on winning in general.

  77. kelsey says:

    Afternoon al.

    Great write up and pictures chas.
    There is obviously a shortage of dentists in Stoke.

    Everything has been said about the game with some diverse opinions, which isn’t a bad thing.

    I watched the game again and it shows how reliant we are on RVP who played his part.
    Chamakh has hardly played this season and it was obvious that he was brought on for his height, but he just held the ball well, but like with many others has no penetration.

    I have lost count this season how many times we have dominated the majority of the first half and then not basically put the game to bed or against the run of play concede and then play catch up.
    I thought Rosicky and Benyahoun did a good job but both of them and Ramsey and Gervinho all lack shooting boots, well at least shots to make the keeper work, on a regular basis.
    The more i see of Santos the more i think he could play in old terms as a left half, as though he is brazilian, his natural game and more positive play is going forward.
    We may finish thirf,fourth or fifth as one of the joys of supporting Arsenal is that one never knows which team will turn up on the day.
    Chelsea have just disproved the theory that a team can’t have three hard games in a week, something AW often uses as an excuse.

    I don’t like the fact that it may depend two weeks after our season ends if we qualify for next year’s CL and even if we have by winning our last two games, things don’t change much if the club want to mount a real tite challenge next season with or without CL. I thought we needed 2 quality players now I think 3 at least and when one hears from AW that Jack may miss the start of next season, he needs to get everything in place before the Euros.IF RVP stays or goes AW will never really change his game plan then he has to bring in quality.
    it’s shame to make up so much ground and then to catch Wigan when they unexpectedly hit magnificant form. QPR was a game we gifted them, and Chelsea was never going to be easy as was yesterday.
    GM if the chavs get third and win the thing then we are out.

    PS; Rasp you worry too much :)

  78. kelsey – I think if the chavs finish third and win the champs lge then fourth place still gets to qualify. Its only a problem for fourth if the chavs finish outside the top four and win it.

  79. So if we finish third and the chavs win it then whoever finished fourth loses out.

  80. VCC says:

    Come on Blackburn, at least get a draw.

  81. Rasp says:

    :lol: kelsey, I am just highly analytical of possible outcomes and the need to give yourself (the Arsenal) the best chance of a positive outcome.

    The chavs are on a real high and would have comfortably beaten Stoke if they’d played them yesterday.

    We are far from in form, and without Arteta and Theo, and with RvP not firing on all cylinders, we will need the other players to step up to give us a chance of 6 points from the next 2 games.

    Unfortunately players like Chamakh and Gervinho do not have the required ‘attack’ so it will be up to whoever is left.

  82. goonermichael says:

    Kelsey you are wrong. If the Chavs win the CL they only take the 4th place if they don’t qualify by thier league position. If they win it and come third 4th will qualify for the play off place

  83. goonermichael says:

    Rasp
    How do you know the chavs would have comfortably won yesterday against stoke? QPR were absolute pony today.

  84. Rasp says:

    Its my opinion gm, the chavs are playing with real spirit and they have 4 very good strikers – we’ve got one!

  85. Rasp says:

    How good would it be if we could bring on a player like Sturridge from the bench to give RvP a rest or play alongside him. Not to mention Drogba or Kalou.

  86. goonermichael says:

    We need to to address that in the Summer Rasp. If we don’t then I’m all for sacking the manager after that. Podolski is coming though.

  87. kelsey says:

    I stand corrected GM.

  88. evonne says:

    Rasp – who are Chelsea’s 4 strikers? Torres? He scored less goals this season than Vermalean

  89. goonermichael says:

    Hope that didn’t sound bossy Kelsey. It wasn’t intended :)

  90. kelsey says:

    Not at all GM, I get that 24/7 at home :)

  91. Rasp says:

    That’s not the point evonne, he, Kalou and Sturridge have all scored more than Chamakh and Park put together and Torres is class – or would you rather have Chamakh than Torres at the Arsenal? Sturridge is a really good, quick, goal hungry striker – the sort of player we need – perhaps Joel Campbel will fill that spot, who knows.

  92. Rasp says:

    Chelsea’s 4 strikers are Drogba, Torres, Sturridge and Kalou evonne – and with Lampard they have a midfielder who has averaged more than 15 goals a season from midfield

  93. goonermichael says:

    Rasp. You’re point is a valid one but Park has played 6 minutes of PL football so I wouldn’t expect him to be prolific. Lampard takes penalties so F that Fng fat you know what.

  94. Rasp says:

    gm, yes, Park has hardly played at all. Why? – we must assume because he’s not good enough. He must be pretty poor if Chamakh gets on before him. For whatever reason, AW doesn’t play him therefore he is not a striker who has added a single thing to our Premiership campaign, all of the chav strikers have chipped in with goals and given an outlet to rest other players.

  95. herbsarmy says:

    Afternoon everyone.
    Fascinating debate about whether it was a good or bad result yesterday. I set my mind-frame in believing we would win yesterday, so was disappointed. Stoke are one of those sides that even if they were in League Two, would give us a hard time. But they aren’t brilliant. Pulis has spent on a few high-profile rejects from bigger clubs and players who were decent, but who are now in decline/winding their careers down.
    It’s been a very strange season results-wise for every club, and our ‘amazing’ recovery is as much down to a genuine lack of quality across the EPL, as anything we’ve done ourselves. Our football is either intrinsically mesmeric or painfully one-dimensional and toothless, depending on the day’s opponents.
    I don’t think we’re that far away, but surely, if we’re so desperate to tie RvP to a new contract, we have to show genuine intent and bring in some ready-made real quality.
    Aiden McGeady and Adam Johnson would be so much more exciting than Gervinho or Walcott.
    We have the resources to win the title and the CL, so what exactly is holding us back?

  96. evonne says:

    Rasp – with their 4 strikers we still scored more goals this season.

  97. goonermichael says:

    Possibly Rasp but at international level Park has quality. The fact that Wenger never has him in the squad tells me Wenger didn’t buy him. If he did then he’d have to be a mug.

  98. herbsarmy says:

    Hi Rasp,

    Is it true that when Drogba was in France at Lorient, AW was offered him for £100,000?

  99. Rasp says:

    You’re missing the poiint evonne – we have one main option, if that option fails, so does the team in many cases.

    If we had other more effective strikers, we’d score more goals, win more games and be able to rest RvP. He’s looking very tired and is not the player he was 2 months ago.

  100. Rasp says:

    Hi herb, there are many players we could have bought – but I think that applies to every team/manager. We did try to sign Mata but failed and that was a great shame.

  101. Rasp says:

    So do you think AW doesn’t play Park because he’s being petulant as he didn’t sign him?

  102. herbsarmy says:

    Question is, is that a club showing financial prudence, or a club lacking in hunger and any real ambition?

  103. goonermichael says:

    No Rasp I think he doesn’t think he’s good enough which begs the question why he would sign a player not good enough. Which leads me to believe he was signed to sell shirts and promote us in Korea. Which, incedently has backfired as we’ve had to cancel a proposed match in Korea as they hate us now.

  104. herbsarmy says:

    Thanks for braving the elements and bringing us a flavour of the Brittania, Chas. Our away fans are immense and always do the club proud.

  105. mickydidit89 says:

    Afternoon all.
    I would hate Chavs to be first London Club to win the CL, so have a real problem with this scenario. We finish 3rd, Spuds 4th and Chavs 5th. Do I then want Chavs to lift the cup to deny Spuds a place?

  106. goonermichael says:

    micky
    I don’t think spuds would get past a team like Udinese tbh

  107. mickydidit89 says:

    GM,
    I’ll just take the silver lining from either outcome. Just don’t see Spuds taking all three points at Bolton on weds, or Toon at Chavs, so a home win on saturday will see the party begin.

  108. goonermichael says:

    considering how bad blackburn are spuds aren’t doing that well.

  109. goonermichael says:

    I’m going to Vietnam on Wednesday so I’m not sure if I’ll see the games

  110. evonne says:

    Micky – i was just wondering when you going to finish eating that chicken! An emu wouldn’t last that long

    Rasp – you missed the point – i am trying to cheer you up :) it is not all doom and gloom because we drew with Stoke

  111. evonne says:

    brilliant goal from Walker :(

  112. dandan says:

    GM Vietnam is beautiful, I am jealous, loved it there. Watch out for the odd moped :-)

  113. goonermichael says:

    I went last year dandan. I close my eyes crossing the road :)

  114. Big Raddy says:

    GM. Not your first trip I recall.

    I spent a month there a few years back and loved the place, especially the inland mountain regions. The food was outstanding.

    Spurs playing better than in recent weeks. Should they play like this Bolton are in trouble, but 3rd place is within our hands. Win just 2 games and we are there

  115. RockyLives says:

    Great report Chas

    Watched a bit of the Spuds game. Blackburn played like a team already relegated. Spuds weren’t particularly good, but Rovers were terrible. Hopefully Bolton will give them a better game midweek.

  116. dandan says:

    Just booked a couple of flights to Toronto, have told the good lady, get better and we will spend a month touring around Canada and the states. Lets hope it works.

  117. RockyLives says:

    dandan
    if you and Mrs DD would like to meet up in Totonto that would be great.
    Fully understand if you just want to do your own thing – you have obviously been through a lot lately.
    Happy to suggest good places etc…

  118. gunnern5 says:

    Blackburn were desperate for points and yet they did did not have a single shot on or off goal. Very bizarre tactics, even with 30 minutes left and down 1-0 they still didn’t change their formation.

  119. Big Raddy says:

    DD. Sounds great. Need a servant?

  120. goonermichael says:

    Hope you and your wife can go and have a fantastic time dandan.

  121. dandan says:

    Thanks Rocky will be a while yet but I needed to put an incentive her way, she is not good and getting very down. will talk nearer the time.

  122. evonne says:

    Dandan – Canada! i say! Take your lovely wife to Krakow, it’s 28 degrees there today
    One way or another, plan the trip carefully so that you don’t miss the start of the next season, because we all know it is going to be a tremendous season for us, I can feel it in my bones

  123. Big Raddy says:

    DD. Please wish your wife good health and a speedy recovery. She must be totally fed up with being ill.

  124. dandan says:

    Arsenal will take second place for a while Evonne, One of the reasons I dont get down with the football is my priorities start with the family. Arsenal is plan B so to speak. Much as I love them.

  125. dandan says:

    BR it is hard seeing her in pain, we seem to take two steps forward and one and a half back each time. But thank you all for your kind words and good wishes

  126. goonermichael says:

    dandan your priorities are totally in the correct order

  127. herbsarmy says:

    Hi dandan,
    all the best for you and your wife, hope she makes a speedy recovery, and that you both enjoy a nice relaxing break in Canada.

  128. Gooner In Exile says:

    Evening all, as others said Chelsea finishing 3rd isn’t a major worry as long as the board don’t stall on transfers until we have qualified, for that reason I’d still prefer 3rd.

    According to BBC stats Blackburn didn’t manage an effort on goal in the first 70 minutes….but as others have said the games midweek for both Toon and Spuds are key. Losses for both will mean 3 points guarantees us finishing above them.

  129. GIE,
    Blackburn didn’t have one single shot in the whole game,first time that has happened since 2004 (WBA).
    They have a clueless manager and the venkeys know nothing about football. They paid 23 million now want 30 million to get out and of course there is the parachute payment.

  130. VCC says:

    Weird tactics taking Yukubu off, he did not appear injured. Surely he was their best bet for a goal?

  131. Gooner In Exile says:

    Kelsey & the sunshine band :D

    You’re right they have got a clueless manager, although he has managed to keep the team playing for him amazingly.

  132. evonne says:

    nice dog and a beautiful shirt

  133. herbsarmy says:

    As a club, we are at a major crossroads.

  134. VCC says:

    Evonne 7:27. Is that my hound you are talking about?

  135. LB says:

    Paid 23 million and now want 30 to get out. I hope they end up having to pay someone to take it off their hands.

  136. evonne says:

    VCC – yes! is he a boxer, looks huge

    LB – ey?

  137. Rasp says:

    LB’s talking about the Venkys evonne. Poor old Jack Walker must be turning in his grave

  138. evonne says:

    rasp – right! i still have no idea what Venkys are :) off to google

  139. VCC says:

    Evonne…Yes he is a big Boxer, and a Gooner, as you can see. My Son dresses him up in Arsenal gear all the time, he is a big softy called George.

  140. evonne says:

    oh yeah, chicken owners of Blackburn, I didn’t know their name

  141. evonne says:

    George :) lovely beast :)

  142. kelsey says:

    Jack Walker gave everything to blackburn and when he knew he had not long to live he set up the Jack Walker Trust. he would turn in his grave to know that they sold the club to the chicken farmers.

  143. herbsarmy says:

    It’s endemic throughout football LB, and disgusting that the whim of an individual, or individuals, can poison the fabric of our football and destroy football clubs and their communities. Blackburn are one of the original twelve that competed in the very first football league in 1888/89.
    Whether or not you have any love for Luton Town, back in 1988 they beat us to win their first major trophy, now they’ve just scraped into the play-offs in the Blue Square Conference.
    Leeds, Nott’m Forest and Ipswich all have European trophies as well as major domestic honours, but you would never believe that of them today.
    Football has become a nasty cut-throat business that is threatening to cut-off the life-support of many communities across Britain, and if you haven’t got the money, you can’t play.

  144. kelsey says:

    I agree with that herb,but what do you mean earlier that we are at a major crossroads

  145. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Very true Herb. And if you havent got the money, you cant go and watch either.

  146. Irishgunner says:

    Evening all – sorry I did a post a ran the other day, could see comments but my phone wouldn’t let me log into WordPress and post. Went to see Limerick play in the First Division – we’re hoping for promotion, got beat by bloody Waterford 1-0 – biggest pile of shite of a game I’ve ever seen.

    As for Arsenal, a point yesterday wasn’t bad all things considered. If we win our last 2 games we’re all good for 3rd aren’t we?

  147. Irishgunner says:

    Roy Hodgson for England – :lol: @ ‘Arry

  148. Rasp says:

    A quote from AW after yesterday’s game…..

    “At the end of the season I think you will have big surprises because there will not be a lot of movement in football.”

  149. VCC says:

    Evonne…..Thank you.

  150. dandan says:

    Hi Irish, thats handy that will certainly take Roys mind of the Arsenal game if he has to name a squad the week after.

  151. herbsarmy says:

    Hi Kelsey,

    we’re at a crossroads because we have to decide whether to stick or twist. Does Theo Walcott having one good game in ten make him good enough for Arsenal? Abou Diaby played 10 games in two years at Auxerre because of injuries. Does it make economic sense to lavish good money on injury-prone players? Gervinho really isn’t good enough. Arteta, good as he has been this season, should have been bought seven years ago. The only thing I can think of to say about Chamakh, is why?
    We’re a huge club, Kelsey. When AW won the ‘Double’ in 1997/98, it was our 11th title, putting us level with MU. They could possibly win their 20th tomorrow. We are not competing. We should have at least one European Cup in our cabinet, many smaller clubs than us have won it.
    If we’re going to compete at the top-table serious measures have to be implemented, if we’re not willing to do that, it makes a mockery of the need to move to The Emirates.
    We are a big friendly over-bearing green dinosaur instead of being a savage lion that wants to rip its opponents to shreds.

  152. kelsey says:

    Good Night all. Give mrs.dandan a hug from me. off to watch Homeland. 8 episodes through and still can’t grasp it.

  153. Irishgunner says:

    Dandan – Its on the BBC website that the FA have confirmed he is the only man they have approached. Maybe WBA will want to give them a good send off, he’ll be a loss for them unless he’s just doing the Euros and England get a new manager after that? Not sure.

  154. SharkeySure says:

    Very good report Chas…..rather you than me though. Is there an away game that you’ve been to where you’ve thought….never again…??

    Its almost a silly question as if you’re 3 for 3 at that shithole you’ll clearly watch The Arsenal anywhere.

    Top man

  155. SharkeySure says:

    GM. Say howdy to DDM for me.

    In the old days he and I had a misunderstanding around the time i was moving away from blogging ‘at a certain place’. Anyway, about six months later I popped in and he made a point of saying he’d been looking out for me to clear the air. Top man

    Like you say…bit of a nutter at times, but his hearts in the right place

  156. goonermichael says:

    Hodgeson is better than twitchy

  157. goonermichael says:

    Hi Sharkey I will do that for you.

  158. SharkeySure says:

    Someone get round to Rasps and take the salt out of his sugar pots. Salt on his cornflakes each morning is making him a bit miserable of late.

    Lets hope that he never finds out that it was Chamakh’s idea of an April fools…..oops…

    Cue jokes about Cham’s reluctance to actually put the salt in the wide open and empty sugar pot. Oh dear.

  159. SharkeySure says:

    Cheers GM

    Poor Harry…lol.

    You gotta love the English FA, the UK media, and Harry’s 8 yr old maths and English tutor.

  160. chas says:

    Thanks to everyone else since I was last on for the kind words. :)

    Sharkey,
    Stoke is probably the only away ground where I’ve thought, ‘do I really want to come back here?’ Thing is, it’s really convenient from Nottingham, only just over an hour, making it closer than any other game. The tickets, while over-priced for rugby, are still not too bad compared to some.

  161. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    So once again the FA makes a pigs ear from a pigs swill and the bacon tastes like beef. I hate to think what goes on behind closed doors down there, probably some geriatric form of i claudias.

    Sharkey, your right about Chas. To go up to stoke 3 seasons in a row is highly comendable. Strange mob up there. If you put 3 stoke fans in a row, one will look like a guest on the Jeremy Kyle show, the second a butlins holiday maker, and the third a contestent on that delightful eighties show Bullseye. Cries of thats “not my effing baby” or “thats my bloody chalet pal”, followed by “one hundred and eighteeeeee” after sex is no doubt common place.

  162. SharkeySure says:

    TMHT….you’re in fine form there. Bacon tastes like beef..lol

    Its also commendable to be an Ems regular whilst living in Notts. I really salute those on here who seemingly travel for hours on end to get to games.

    Oz and RurP…I’m looking at you two feckless shysters when I say some fans just don’t make a proper effort…says me with only two games this season !! ;-)

  163. SharkeySure says:

    TMHT if its any kid that him pictured above has supposed to have fathered I don’t think a DNA test will be required.

    Slap the baby hard…if it cries, its not his. If it howls, oinks or barks……

  164. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    hehehe, know what you mean Sharkey. Sort of bloke i would keep my kids away from. Bet he throws a mean dart though.

  165. Big Raddy says:

    THMT. Great stuff

    Herb. Your crossroads comment deserves better than I can write at this late hour (here). Will come back to it tomorrow,

  166. Rasp says:

    Haha, they were never going to offer ‘arry the England job. He’s tainted and they’re a bunch of old farts. The funny thing is, most spud fans I know want him to get the England job because the’ve suddenly decided he’s crap.

  167. Rasp says:

    sharkey – does reality tast salty then? ;)

  168. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Rasp, the whole thing is farcical. Its been raining so heavy down here the last week i thought they would turn to Steve Mclaren again so they could nick one of his umbrelas. To be honest ime glad Arry wont get the job. He cant handle pressure and with his recent heart scare i think its for the best. I wouldnt be surpried if that slimey, slippery, snake like Daniel Levy isnt involved somehow. He makes people like Blair and Cameron look like father christmas.

  169. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Oh, i see. Now match of the day compound last nights crime against Arsene by inviting the hero Tony Pullis on tonights show.
    Dublin and Lawrenson are on it to. My finger, like mary whithouse, is on that complain button to the BBC again. Ime half expecting them to switch from the action were the 3 idiots will be seen donning Arsene masks, flapping there hands in the air, and shouting in a silly french accent, but with Mark Lawrenson it will be hard to tell

    If Pullis takes all his clothes off and starts trying to flick Dublin with a towel i will let you all know.

  170. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Good news, Pullis has kept his clothes on and Rorys towel is no were to be seen. Lawrenson looks realy dissapointed, no idea why? hehehe

  171. Rasp says:

    Hi TMHT, I know its been said before, but when are the FA going to do something about the time it takes Delap & Co. to dry the ball with a towel. If a player just stood there for as long as that ritual takes, they’d be booked for time wasting. And what about the fact that the towel is not available to the opposition. Others know FA rules better than I, but if a towel is a legitimate part of football kit on the pitch, maybe our players could whip the asses of the Stoke players with a rolled up towel everytime they slice one of our players to the ground :roll:

  172. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    There taking the piss out of Arsene again. Hoards of ugly darts players who are unsure of who is there father been ulogised by the BBC. They are also idolising Pullis despite the fact he was on the Kyle show last week for beating his brother with a wet towel…..Lawrenson still looks disappointed.

  173. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Are you watching match of the day Rasp? The way they are riddiculing arsene is nothing short of disgraceful. Man utd or spurs fans on the production team for sure. know what you mean about the towels. Its a joke the FA allow Pullis to indulge his sick towel fetish during the game

  174. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Lawrenson looks realy dissulisoned now. He wont even look at Pulis. He is sitting at an angle which displays obvious body language dissapoinment. Mug Pullis looks happy as Larry after his idolising…………….i would like to strangle him with a towel.

  175. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    What goes around comes around. Next season we will thrash Stoke five nil with Ramsey scoring a hatrick, and it will be Chas doing the Wenger.

  176. gunnern5 says:

    From Teamtalk.com

    ………………………………………………………………………………………

    FA make Hodgson approach

    Sunday 29th April 2012 19:36

    West Brom have given Roy Hodgson permission to talk to the Football Association about the England manager’s job.

    Hodgson has already had a conversation with FA chairman David Bernstein after West Brom chairman Jeremy Peace gave the go-ahead for talks with Albion’s 64-year-old manager.

    No approach has been made to Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp, who had been viewed as the favourite to succeed Fabio Capello.

    Bernstein said: “I’m grateful to Jeremy and all at West Bromwich Albion for their co-operation in allowing us to approach Roy, who I have since spoken with.

    “Roy is the only manager we have approached and we remain on course to make an appointment within the timescale we set-out soon after Fabio Capello’s departure.

    “Further conversations will now take place with Roy and my Club England colleagues before any further announcements can be made.”

    Hodgson is out of contract in the summer – meaning the FA would not have to pay any costly compensation or become involved in any wrangling with the club.

    That is in contrast to the situation at Spurs who would expect hefty compensation were the FA to approach them about Redknapp.

    Hodgson has coached the Switzerland and Finland national teams with considerable success in the past. He has also been extraordinarily successful on limited resources at West Brom, for whom he signed an 18-month contract last February after a disappointing spell at Liverpool.

    West Brom said in a statement: “The club are currently in negotiations with Roy about a new contract – his current deal ends on June 30 – and remain very keen to bring these talks to a successful conclusion.

    “However, Roy has expressed a desire to explore this opportunity and, accordingly, the club have granted him permission to speak to the FA.”

    Peace added: “Roy has done a fantastic job over the past 15 months and the fact the FA want to discuss the England role with him is testament to that.

    “Roy is a proud Englishman and we can understand why he wants to speak to the FA about this highly-prestigious managerial position.

    “However, we have emphasised to Roy how much we would like him to remain as our head coach and continue his major contribution to our project at the Hawthorns as we look to establish ourselves as a Premier League club.

    “Everyone here has an excellent working relationship with him and he is immensely popular with our supporters.”

  177. Gooner In Exile says:

    I remember the MotD team at the last World Cup tearing strips out of Holland because of the anti football played against Spain.

    I said then to anyone that would listening that come a solid defensive/time wasting or hardman game against us they would change their tune back to normal…and they have.

    As 26 said last night Stokes return for money spent in the summer is poor yet Pulisis eulogised as some hero of our game.

    They don’t like Arsene because he is too clever for a football manager.

    Herb your question about our cross roads is interesting. Diabys injury record with us have all stemmed from the broken ankle from a Sunderland player now plying his trade in a call centre. A career ruined by a no mark with the game won and no reason to tackle like he did. I have read recently that the people working with Diaby to get fit have had to try and remodel his whole running style, to some extent Ramseys break was easier to overcome (due to the wonders of modern medical science). It was a break (albeit bad) of the shin only. Diaby was ankle with 360 degree movement and it’s never been right since. I feel for the lad but it’s time to retire probably for him.

    As for not putting the European Cup on the table in our history there are a few factors to be considered. As you say “smaller” clubs have won it, but as you say in your earlier comment football has become a ruthless game since most of those won it, when they won it clubs were rewarded for long term planning by management and board alike (Robson, Clough and Saunders (altho Saunders resigned before they actually won it)). Football was more cyclical then, at the start of every season the team with the manager who put together the strongest squad could win the league. And then Jack Walker bought the PL title with Blackburn, Sky money came into the game and players demanded bigger wages or they were off to the next club who paid more. And into this vicious spiral we went.

    United manage to trade on their brand to get bigger, and benefited from stadium development that few of the other top clubs could match.

    Is CL a small clubs competition now, with the exception of Porto who dived their way to the title in 2003-04 albeit with a side carefully constructed by Mourinho, since then every winner has been a big spender and going back before that for the last non big money winner it would probably be Dortmund in 1997 but that was also the last time the competition only involved the Champions of their domestic league.

    Other than those two winners I’m not sure you could argue that we are a bigger club than the other winners, we might like to think we are, but we’re not.

  178. oz gunner says:

    great read chas, cheers for the game day insight. Loved the half time pie story.

    If there are worries about wilshere and starting next season we should be focusing our strengths on signing shinji Kagawa. He won’t sign a new contract at BD because he wants to play in the premier league. Let manure and city fight for hazard, and we can grab kagawa for a cheaper fee. His ability to create and score is a joy to watch.

    @ GiE

    i agree in regards to diaby. He is worried about this affecting his euros spot, when he should be more focused on turning his career around and working on having a strong pre-season. Surely Arsene is at the end of his tether on this one. It’s a sad story but enough is enough. His return against liverpool said it all. On for the injured arteta at 53mins, subbed at 80 injured for ox

  179. oz gunner says:

    @ Sharkespeare

    haha, you’re right my lack of match day attendances is appalling! My hope of finding a genie at the end of a packet of tim tams (so i can wish for ownership of arsenal) is also fading!

    @ dandan

    Wish you and your wife all the best. I hope she improves greatly so you can both enjoy your trip to canada ey.

  180. VCC says:

    City or United? AA’ers.

    City all the way for me.

  181. evonne says:

    I like Hodgson a lot and so does Wenger. Come on FA, get Roy

  182. mickydidit89 says:

    City for me, and a good morning all.

  183. mickydidit89 says:

    VCC,
    Spookey. I wrote my opening line before seeing your question.

  184. evonne says:

    Micky – finally ate that chicken! Morning sir

    ManU for me, cannot stand Oilers

    I am so excited about Hodgson, does that mean it is a done deal??

  185. evonne says:

    No, I changed my mind. I like Mancini and hate plastic ManUers kebab shop owners in Oakwood. I hate na$ri (but he was good for us for 5 months), but Evra is even worse ( has done nothing for us, ever).
    No, have to go for Shitty

  186. mickydidit89 says:

    Chicken done Evonne :-)
    City for me tonight. I want them fully charged up before playing Toon. I’m really not bothered who wins the title.

  187. Gooner In Exile says:
  188. mickydidit89 says:

    GiE,
    That’s a good noise from AW.

  189. mickydidit89 says:

    Someone (sorry whoever) mentioned importance of finishing third, so that there can be no “let’s wait and see if we qualify for tournament proper” nonsense this summer.

  190. Gooner In Exile says:

    I think if I was Roy I’d take the job for the Euros then go back to West Brom.

    He is a nice guy and I’m sure his experience at Liverpool will be in his mind. Someone said on Twitter that he has a habit of getting good jobs at bad times. I think he is a good manager.

    On the whole MotD thing Saturday and Sunday a line voice speaks, Rob Shepard

  191. evonne says:

    GiE – from twit above ‘Lots of reaction of disgust about some #Stoke fans.Tony Pulis had the chance to condemn but diverted attention: Therein lies part o problem’ = Pulis is THE problem

  192. evonne says:

    Hodgson got bad treatment at Pool because he wasn’t Kenny
    He will get bad treatment in England because he is not Harry

    He will take the job, because he is a proud Englishman and could not turn it down, but it is not going to be plain sailing

  193. Big Raddy says:

    GIE. Excellent riposte to Herb’s crossroads comment. It is a discussion which will run for sometime I fear.

    As I wrote earlier, there can be no surprise when Stoke fans behave like Orcs. Does one blame a jellyfish for being a jellyfish? Wenger is the Anti-Christ to these morons – he is all they are not. He is intelligent, suave, rich, successful and has a job.

    As to MOTD. The BBC has lost it’s way with sport coverage, and football in particular. It panders to the lowest common denominator.

  194. Gooner In Exile says:

    Micky as well as the transfers being able to be done early it also gives us the prospect of not having two big games to divert attention from a good league start.

  195. Gooner In Exile says:

    :D Evonne …… You have learned well my child.

  196. evonne says:

    Sharkey at 9:30 – slap the baby hard, that’s so funny :)

  197. Big Raddy says:

    evonne. Hodgson is 64 . In all likelihood this will be his final job and he will go out at the very top.

    He isn’t a fool and knows the inherent problems he has taken on but I believe he is the only possible manager. Who else could stop the ego driven culture within the team? Harry? ….. He is part of the problem.

  198. Gooner In Exile says:

    Raddy cheers.

  199. evonne says:

    Morning Raddy, yes Roy is nobody’s fool and he knows the English job is a poisoned chalis. I didn’t realise he was 64; he had some heart problems, didn’t he?

  200. Gooner In Exile says:

    Just a thought, do you think Roy is just first to be interviewed? Have a feeling they may contact ‘Arry when Spuds fate is known so as not to be seen to upset the team.

    Altho ‘Arry would cost some compensation so maybe FA will keep back some money.

  201. VCC says:

    As to MOTD. The BBC has lost it’s way with sport coverage, and football in particular. It panders to the lowest common denominator.

    Big Raddy. The very reason I don’t watch it any more, hopeless coverage with dim wit reporters.

    As for Lineker, I don’t eat his crisps any more. F—ing Twat.

  202. Gooner In Exile says:

    Can this be true? GN5 I’m looking to you for stats:

    “Since Oct 1st we have had 3rd best defense in EPL after MUFC and MCFC by goals conceded”

  203. Big Raddy says:

    Back to yesterday’s Spurs game. It defies any logic why Blackburn would play such a defensive game, particularly after going a goal down.

    How do the management team justify their wages?

  204. Rasp says:

    A comment I put up last night………

    A quote from AW after Saturday’s game…..

    “At the end of the season I think you will have big surprises because there will not be a lot of movement in football.”

    Translation: we’re gonna get Bendtner, Denilson and Vela back because no-one wants to buy them :roll:

  205. Big Raddy says:

    As to tonight. I want there to be a huge fight which results in a pitch invasion which leads to some ugly scenes which are beamed into the homes of the righteous viewers who will make a huge song and dance which will result in the FA docking 25 points from both teams which will result in …..

    Arsenal being crowned PL Champions.

    Not asking for much ……

  206. chas says:

    As a club, we’re not at a major crossroads in the slightest. We’re on a carefully chosen path and will continue along that path for the foreseeable future. Some sections of the fanbase would like to see us at a crossroads, that’s a different matter entirely.

  207. Big Raddy says:

    Rasp. Good to see you have returned to your normal positive self :-)

  208. chas says:

    Salt on your cornflakes again, Rasp. :)

  209. My turn to have my say on the England job ……

    I was told by my cousin – a spud – 2 years ago that Harry would never be given the England job. My cousin is a solicitor and has a cousin who was working at the FA at the time. They knew that once Harry was charged for tax evasion the FA would never be able to offer him the job. He may have been found not guilty by a jury but the inference was there that he was guilty otherwise the CPS would never have brought the case against him.

    Murderers get aquitted by juries sadly …… it’s no surprise that Harry was aquittted.

    The FA should be disgusted with themselves that they didn’t come out and say that Harry was not in the running for the job as soon as Capello resigned. They have allowed this to run and run in the press and now a good man like Roy Hodgeson is caught in the middle.

  210. Gooner In Exile says:

    Would people object to NikB being in the squad right now? Would he have been more useful than Cham or Park.

    Why is he not in the squad? His ego or his skill or the fans reaction?

  211. evonne says:

    Rasp – fantastic, I hope you are right, NickB is getting better and better all the time :)

  212. Rasp says:

    Raddy, I make no bones about it, I have serious reservations about our potential transfer activity this coming summer. I don’t need to spell it out for people except to say … more of the same.

  213. Rasp says:

    GiE, Bendtner’s position in the squad is nothing to do with the fans – its all to do with his ability to put chances away.

  214. Big Raddy says:

    RAsp. 8.59. Sad but true

  215. chas says:

    peaches,
    If you think the spuds’ form suffered because of the Crooknap for England talk, then surely we should be thanking the FA for making such a dog’s breakfast of the whole situation, not castigating them?

  216. chas says:

    Excellent article, GIE.

  217. chas says:

    “I think with Hodgson in charge, England will find it easy against Sweden but they might struggle with Ukwaine and Fwance!”

  218. evonne says:

    Chas @9:05 – I thought the same. For once we benefited from inadequate FA :)

  219. dandan says:

    Big Raddy Quote of the “printed” weekend for me well done, top man, needed that laugh. I lived next door to Stoke in Congleton for years, their support is typical and what you should expectof a populace that greets all and sundry as “Duck”

    “As I wrote earlier, there can be no surprise when Stoke fans behave like Orcs. Does one blame a jellyfish for being a jellyfish? Wenger is the Anti-Christ to these morons – he is all they are not. He is intelligent, suave, rich, successful and has a job.”

  220. Gooner In Exile says:

    Rasp i assume you’ve seen his finish on Saturday, it was very tasty. I also think he has the right demeanour/style of play that can help us at times.

    However I think it’s his ego that has left him out of the squad. Let’s be honest if it’s his inability to finish why is Cham still in the squad as our go to back up?

  221. mickydidit89 says:

    Chas,
    Stwuggle surely :-)

  222. Oh, I definately agree that the inadequacies of the FA did us a HUGE favour :lol:

  223. Rasp says:

    Thanks GiE,

    If Bendy’s not good enough for Sunderland, he’s not good enough for us. My fear is that because we won’t be able to move players on (except those out of contract) we won’t be able to bring in the players we need. The worst case scenario is that we lose a couple of big players (RvP Song) right at the end of the transfer window.

  224. New Post …………….

  225. Rasp says:

    To respond to your point though GiE, yes, I’d far rather have Bendtner than Chamakh – there’s no comparison, Bendy tries/wants to score goals.

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