Wouldn’t you prefer to watch the Arsenal?

Written by dandan

Having watched just about all the world cup so far, I find myself reduced almost to a state of depression at the dreadful garbage being consistently served up in the name of football, although to be fair last tuesday’s North Korea V Brazil was an improvement. That game aside, match after match have been timid affairs devoid of any risk taking. Unless, as in the case of poor Rob Green a mistake gets made.

Where is the skill, the excitement, and the ambition even to make a telling pass? All the things we were led to expect from supposedly the cream of world football are missing.  Unfortunately dross is dross no matter what banner it is played under.

It then occurred to me that there are clubs in our own premier league who serve up fare like that every week. Long balls, constantly soaring over the heads of an almost redundant midfield, aimed for the big guys in the penalty area in the hope that a knockdown will fall kindly and be bundled into the net. On the rare occasion an attacker does get a ball to feet he immediately goes to ground feigning a foul, seeking a free kick in the hope that their match winner the dead ball specialist can carve something out of nothing.

At the other end busses are parked across the goal as Chelsea’s special one famously put it. Negativity rules it seems, we shall not lose, winning is all.

Well not from where I am it isn’t, football is supposed to be an entertainment, the fare we are being served from South Africa is most definitely not that and deserves the continual giant raspberry being blown by the never-ending cacophony of the vuvuzelas.

Why do I feel like this? Because I have been spoilt in the past decade watching the wonderful Wengerball. Real entertainment this, risks included. Breathtaking movement, sublime goals, annoying mistakes and skilful individuals, whose artistry leaves the watcher mesmerised and amazed at the sheer magnificent’s of this the truly beautiful game. So stark a contrast is this, to that we have watched over the past week as to be almost unrecognisable as the same game.

Our detractors tell me we have won nothing for five years.

Really? I believe we have won over thousands of new fans around the world who would much rather watch us than this daily dose of a non-event that is the world cup. Call me what you will, stick to your negative safety-first style if you must, be bored witless in the cause of not losing.

But we are the Arsenal and win or lose. I cannot wait for the new season and some real entertainment at the home of football.

109 Responses to Wouldn’t you prefer to watch the Arsenal?

  1. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    I’m with dandan.

    Evening all

  2. Liam says:

    If the team I’m watching does not include Manuel Almunia in goal then it’s an improvement on watching Arsenal for me right now. Watching the current Arsenal team has become a bit like self imposed torture knowing that eventually, no matter how well we play, the team will implode. So in answer to your question no I wouldn’t, it’s a welcome break in fact. Don’t mean to be negative, that’s just my opinion.

  3. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    This is the worst WC since USA94.

  4. Rasp says:

    Welcome Liam,

    Your opinion is valid, hopefully we are addressing the weak areas of the squad and next season won’t be tainted by that ‘imploding feeling’

    A new keeper and CB would be a good start.

  5. gnarleygeorge9 says:


    Looks like your country of residence & mine may be the 2 worst teams @ the WC

  6. Rasp says:

    Morning/evening gg,

    True about USA1994 – I think Australia could be improved by having Diana Ross up fron though 😉

  7. London says:

    Morning all

    You have put into words what I am sure many were thinking Dandan. The idea that vuvuzuelas blowing a giant raspbury at the dross being served up made me laugh. Bring on the real stuff.

  8. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    Won’t happen Ras, Diana Ross plays for your test cricket team, & we all know that she is going to get spanked this comming Summer 😆

  9. charybdis1966 says:

    Morning all, yes you’re right Raspers, Diana Ross did have a lot of front.
    So our first game of next season is away to the ‘dippers on Aug 14, then we are home to the seaside boys (Blackpool) the following week.
    Agree with the post – it has been pretty tedious fare at the World Cup so far, but at least I’ll get to see my team at Underhill in a months time.

  10. Rasp says:

    Morning London,

    Pool away is the first game of the season and Blackpool is the first home game.

  11. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    Those vuvuzelas put me off watching the WC games 👿

  12. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    Good Evening London, razamataz, chary & kelsey & Liam. Liam another blog gave you a big rap today, that is if your name ends with Brady.

  13. Livers says:

    Morning all, the only thing this world cup makes more interesting than 1994 USA is England are actually in it….

    Still, my Mrs is a Saffa and extremely proud that they are hosting although she only really supports the Rugby and cricket element… still very disappointed after last night

  14. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    It would be an interesting thing if peache’s husband/partner, whatever was named Herbert

  15. charybdis1966 says:

    Ha, beat you to it Raspers !

  16. Rasp says:

    As ever chary – I’ve given up competing with you and irish 😆

  17. gnarleygeorge9 says:


    Rugga! Tell your mrs to forget next years WC in the Land of the Long White Snot 😳 I mean Cloud, Robbie Deanes has gone under the radar, we are going to shove those vuvuzelas up Yarpies blurter 😆 next year

  18. Big Raddy says:

    Great stuff DD.

    And as you know I agree with you.

    Yesterday was better though, the Spain game was good in an AFC v Stoke sort of way.

    With the sudden death coming I fear the standard will drop even further and the play will become about an individual stroke of brilliance. But maybe it has awlays been like that

  19. Livers says:

    Gnarley…. they aren’t the team of 3 years back for sure..

    I was over there for the cricket over Christmas… loved it

  20. Rasp says:

    Morning again all,

    Good post dandan. I don’t know what language gg was speaking in his last comment – some sort of aboriginal dialect? 😛

    We haven’t seen any amazing goals – long range screamers. Either the ball is more dificult to control or the players just don’t have confidence in playing with it.

  21. Morning/Evening Gnarley – my ex was a right herbert does that count 😉

  22. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    Yep peaches, I guess so 😛

  23. gnarleygeorge9 says:


    I’m bigging us up. After the Germany game, all our egos down here are about as flat as a lizard drinking. But Deanes has been doing some great work 🙂

  24. craig says:

    As an arsenal fan and South African i am totally excited about the world cup.Arsenal might offer more intense entertainment for arsenal and English premiership fans all over, but the world cup is a football event for the whole world.Do you people even know that the majority of Arsenal players are French…

  25. Livers says:

    Gnarley.. you say “us” as we.

    Nothing gives me more pleasure than the yanks and Aussies doing badly 😉

  26. Livers says:

    Craig, majority suggests more than 50% which is far far out

  27. Sorry how rude of me – Morning all – dandan you’ve said what a lot of us have been thinking I’m sure ….. but tonight we have France v Mexico and several of my very favourite pairs of legs will be competing against each other. How to choose…….how to choose……..?

    France were so poor in their first game and Domenech is such an idiot so I reckon they’ll struggle to beat The Yummy One and his mates.

  28. Actually they’re all rather yummy 😳

  29. Rasp says:

    Hi Craig,

    I don’t see the relevance of the fact that we have a lot of French players in relation to the post.

    The general feeling in the UK is one of great admiration and happiness for SA, but disappointment with the football being played. I’m sure it was a corporate decision, but I think the choice of ball was a mistake.

  30. I know its only against NZ but tonight he can skin Sagna and Gallas – oh no – you see the problem 😉

  31. I’m pretty certain the poor football has nothing to do with where its being played – maybe England will set the tournament alight tomorrow night 😛

    The weather certainly looks like its been imported especially for us – cold driving rain, supporters in hats and scarves…….our lot should feel right at home.

  32. goonermichael says:

    Hi Peaches
    It was nice to meet you at the Fulham game. I do remember your brother he was there when I joined and still there when I left. The WC is boring. I’ve been playing monster hunter on the wii. Much more exciting.

  33. Big Raddy says:


    The poor standard of the football is no reflection upon the standard of the South African presentation of it.

    The organising committee must be as disappointed as the rest of the world.

    Rasp. It is the same ball that hit the bar for Alonso and the post for Ronaldo. If you don’t shoot ……. you know the story……

  34. Big Raddy says:

    GM. Get a grip. You are too old for Wii

  35. Hi GM – was nice to meet you too, a few of us are going to go to the Barnet game in July if you fancy meeting up then.

    Surely they must be getting to grips with the ball now?

    No-one else looking forward to The Yummy One then ……

    Have to do some work guys, catch you later

  36. charybdis1966 says:

    Who is “The Yummy one” Peachy?
    Or more importantly should I not be asking this?

  37. The One and Only Yummy One is Carlos Vela – hes just too yummy for his own good though, watch how less yummy players who think they’re yummy always give him a hard time 😀

    Lights up a football pitch for me 😆

  38. charybdis1966 says:

    Oh really? I couldn’t see it for Vela myself, with TR07 I can.
    As a player I think Vela may well be in the last chance saloon with us though. He had his chances, although not that many to be fair, and he sadly let us, and himself, down.

  39. Rasp says:

    This is a fascinating insight into how Arsene prepares (or doesn’t prepare!) our team for matches as opposed to the Spanish national side. I’m not sure if what Cesc says here is a good or bad thing?

    ……Fabregas said: “Here they give us much more information than they do at Arsenal, definitely.

    “At Arsenal we don’t really look at anything from the other team, we look for ourselves and that’s it.

    “Here, maybe two three days before the game, we start looking at some videos, we know more or less the starting eleven that is going to play… we know nearly everything about them.”

  40. goonermichael says:

    I’m really busy today so I’m on and off. I’ve got a ticket for the Barnet game so that would be realy nice

  41. Alfa says:

    Hi all. Good post Dandan.

    Watching Spain v. Switzerland was like watching Arsenal v. Blackburn etc. (except less French players of course 🙄 ). Why on earth wasn’t Cesc brought on? Could be a taste of the future for him if he goes to Barça.

    Apart from that it hasn’t been great. One highlight was Tshabalada’s goal in the first match, so SA have something to celebrate on the pitch as well as off it.

  42. charybdis1966 says:

    2-1 to the Argies at half time, I hope the Koreans can come back in this game as I can’t stand the Argies now, what with Messi joining in the team-Barca Cesc-tapping, so come on you Poodle munchers !

  43. jaygooner says:

    Cesc’s comments remind of the film The Damned United. Don Revie had dossiers galore on the opposition while Brian Mighty Clough used psychology and utter belief that his players were better than any team. Who won more trophies? Brian Clough! Revie went to the middle east in disgrace while Clough took Nottingham Forest to the title and European Cup glory

  44. charybdis1966 says:

    Ah bollocks, dam you Higuain !

  45. Big Raddy says:

    This is good news for one of our own and a better decision than TA’s….


  46. London says:

    Come on you poodle munchers…..lol

  47. irishgunner says:

    ” Oh really? I couldn’t see it for Vela myself, with TR07 I can.” – Seriously, Chary its like we share the same brain ha ha

    Although I do see where Peaches is coming from regarding Vela but he ain’t a patch on Super Tom.

    Time for the Greeks – Woohoo 😕

  48. charybdis1966 says:

    Absolutely Maire, great minds and all that.
    Actually in the same way I could never see the fascination for George Clooney – I see it more with George Formby to be honest.
    As for the Bubbles up next, their play is so negative I’d like to see Nigeria go through, also because there are so many gooners there.

  49. irishgunner says:

    Agreed – Greeks are as dull as dish water. Nigeria and South Korea to fight it out for the 2nd spot next week hopefully.

    Looking forward to tonight though, France vs Mexico should be good. Both could do with 3 points.

  50. Big Raddy says:

    I agree. This could be the first game I miss – it’s a rare sunny day here.

    But I will be glued tonight to see what craziness Domenech come up with

  51. irishgunner says:

    Oh dear, oh dear – what was the keeper doing?

  52. Big Raddy says:

    It’s the ball Irish 😉

  53. OMG George Clooney is seriously gorgeous – chary, you and I need to do some serious drinking together and I’ll give you the girls perspective 😀

  54. irishgunner says:

    😆 BR

    Peaches – I never liked George Clooney till I saw “O Brother Where Art Though” now I like him, didn’t think it would have been that film that would get me liking him but there you go…

  55. Rasp says:


    Do you mind, this is a serious blog for debating football 🙄

  56. dandan says:

    Pffff George Clooney girls really, you ain’t met me yet, free as a bird and totally my own man a real mans man….. I will ask the wife for permission to send a photo.

  57. irishgunner says:

    But Greece are playing. Greece vs George Clooney. George Clooney wins cos he’s pretty.

  58. dandan says:

    Afternoon all, Looking forward to tonight’s game, France surely have got to get there fingers out

  59. charybdis1966 says:

    What’s wrong with George Formby then, he’s no worse than the grey haired lothario you are all eulogising about: http://s3.amazonaws.com/findagrave/photos/2001/222/formbygeorgebio.jpg

  60. irishgunner says:

    He has Samir Nasri teeth.

  61. charybdis1966 says:

    But he’s musically talented Maire, what more could you want ?

  62. dandan says:

    Chary I am good at blowing my own trumpet, does that count LOL

  63. irishgunner says:

    Him to look like Johnny Depp?

  64. charybdis1966 says:

    Good one Dandan, it reminds me of the line “He has a girlfriend yet he still blows his own trumpet” 🙂

  65. charybdis1966 says:

    Why, does Johnny wield a mean axe also ?

  66. irishgunner says:

    Its the cheekbones Chary, its the cheekbones….

    Also because he was such a bad boy but now he’s the good father – awwww melts me heart

  67. charybdis1966 says:

    Plus he’s alive, Maire, always a bonus !

  68. irishgunner says:

    It does help 😆

  69. irishgunner says:

    😆 The pundits on RTE went for a break, came back and they were all in Mexican clothes – hats and mustaches etc ha ha

  70. London says:

    In response to how some people have used Cesc’s comments, about the difference in preparation for a game at Arsenal and for Spain, to have a go at Wenger……….fat lot of good it did them against Switzerland then.

  71. London says:

    I have been trying to work out what is different, I have been thinking about it all day but have not been able to put my finger on it until now…….hello Rasp goodbye Rasputin. Did this happen ages ago and I amm the last one to realise? 😉

  72. irishgunner says:

    😆 I never called him Rasputin anyways – took far too long to type ha ha

    I think I need a change of name: Irishgunner is too meh. Suggestions?

  73. irishgunner says:

    Arsène Wenger is prepared to join the growing protest against vuvuzelas at the World Cup.

    Virtually every game at the South African tournament has been played amid the drone of supporters’ horns. It was a novelty for a while but, as the event completes its first full week, that has now well and truly worn off.

    “It kills one of the charms of football – the songs,” said Wenger, who is at the World Cup commentating for French TV. “The vocal support disappears.

    “Also I must say it is not very nice to sit through a game while a guy blows one of those in your ear. I find it uncomfortable. On television it might look amusing but when you are confronted with it on a daily basis – even at the airports – it is an absolute nightmare.

    “I would sign a petition to get rid of them tomorrow. For me it’s World Cup South Africa – yes, vuvuzela no.”

    Songs at the Emirates Arsene?

  74. Big Raddy says:

    Good start to the game. End to end and Mexico look very tasty, shame about the finishing….. so far.

    irish. You will always be Irish to me, but I understand the desire to change your name. I always wanted to be named after John Wayne i.e. Marion 😉

  75. irishgunner says:

    One of the better games so far. Vela had a good chance but wasted it.

    Ah, I keep making threats to change it but probably won’t although I just say Sagna’s Hair and thought that would make a good user name.

  76. Big Raddy says:

    I chose BR without giving it any thought and now that is who I am.

    Shit. Vela injured but not really a surprise is it. The man cannot put a run of 3 games together.

  77. Big Raddy says:

    Abidal is having an awful game, how can he get a start? And Diaby is just coasting

  78. Rasp says:

    Hi London,

    I’ve shortened the name as I’m not sure it is appropriate for a family man to be connected with a debauched russian pervert 😳

    I have now designated R.A.S.P. as an acronym …. any guesses?

    I put up the transcript of Cesc’s comments regarding preparation for matches earlier today, but I don’t believe I was critical of Arsène in the process – just questioning as is my wont 😉

  79. Big Raddy says:

    France are totally missing a creative MF. Diaby has gone missing – much like his AFC career – one game superb the next pisspoor.

    No Nasri, no Goucuff. TH14 on the bench watching while Anelka is replacd by some player from Toulon.

    Domenech is going to get slaughtered if France don’t score soon

  80. Big Raddy says:

    Get TH on !! Ribery has done Sweet FA so far. Domenech has gone totally nuts …. bringing on Valbuena from OM !

    They deserve to lose with this lunatic as a manager

  81. Big Raddy says:

    Well it was no surprise that Abidal was 5 minutes late on the tackle and gave away a penalty, which was scored by a 37 y.o. who plays in the 2nd Div in Mexico.

    and yet TH is too old for Domenech….

  82. Rasp says:

    Where’s irish? rolling around on the floor in ecstasy I’m guessing 😉

  83. charybdis1966 says:

    You’re right Radders, Domenech is a nutcase !

  84. charybdis1966 says:

    So, Mexico & Uruguay to “agree” a draw and France & Banana Banana to go out.

  85. Big Raddy says:

    A shameful performance fro France. Wenger must have been fuming at the tactical stupidity of Domenech.

    To lose to a team with better players is understandable, but to lose because you leave your best players at home or on the bench is dire.

  86. Big Raddy says:

    That would be brilliant Chary

  87. charybdis1966 says:

    Yep, Diaby, Sagna and Gallas to get a bit of a rest, not that it will matter if Gallas is off as seems likely.

  88. London says:

    Diaby was back to his usual ineffectual self. Normally this wouldn’t matter but he is expected to play such a huge role for us in the forth coming season it is very worrying.

  89. Big Raddy says:

    The Arsenal players have been poor so far this WC. I cannot think of one who has enhanced his reputation. Even RvP looked out of condition

  90. kelsey says:

    The historical hatred of the english towards the germans now seems to be supeseeded to the French,at least in football terms.and the backlash on the crazy domenech will be rightly justified.

    on an Arsenal perspective,not a great tournament so far for our players, and vela is injured yet again.

    Gallas played last night as if he had other things on his mind and was woeful, and as mentioned above Diaby can’t put two good games together.Sagna played OK, but man for man, the french literally shot themselves in the foot by team selection and their overall poor play.Some of the players were unreconisable to the ones we see play week in and wek out in the PL.Only one man to blame for that,and he is resigning after this tournament.

    Going back to the greece v nigeria game, the greek equaliser wasn’t a million miles away by the blunder of the nigerian keeper to that of green, the ball seems to be the main culprit.

  91. SharkeySure says:

    BBC 606 – “You know how all the South Africans are blowing their Vuvuzelas this world cup because it represents their culture? Well if England wins the World Cup bid will we be all playing the spoons?”

  92. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    Evening all

    Its time to offload Vela & Eduardo while Le gaffer is @ it.

  93. gnarleygeorge9 says:


    Playing the spoons with knotted hankies 😆

  94. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    Arsenal players have no need to shine this WC. They have all had their contracts extended/upgraded by The Club.

  95. charybdis1966 says:

    Gnarley, I think it’s the Arsenal players who know they are not being sought after by other clubs who aren’t trying to shine. They know no one else wants them and are complacent with, as you say, their new & upgraded contracts.

  96. SharkeySure says:

    Don’t forget the rolled up trousers as well Gnarley, oh and socks with sandals should complete ‘the look’.

  97. SharkeySure says:

    Chary, all clubs have to give players new contracts.

    We can’t complain when players leave on frees, but also complain when contracts are extended.

    Its a tough balancing act. Flamini wasn’t worth 80k per week (imo) when he left, but most of us might have happily paid that much to his replacement.

    Clubs just can’t seem to win these days, ALL the power is with the players, and for clubs its a stark choice between maintaining a resale value or losing some of your better players

  98. charybdis1966 says:

    Yeah that’s fair enough SS Sure, it just strikes me that it’s no coincidence none of our players have excelled particularly as it feels to me they have operated in a “comfort zone” at AFC where less than maximum effort is tolerated, and this has carried on into their World Cup form.
    Having said that I don’t think Sagna did anything wrong when he played, but Diaby…well, he’s just reverted to type. I had to laugh when Vela went off injured – we won’t see him play for us till Xmas now.
    Looking on the upside perhaps less of our players will come back in pre-season jaded by their efforts in the latter stages of the World Cup.

  99. Big Raddy says:

    I am laughing thinking of GG in a wide brimmed hat with corks hanging off it, khaki shorts, khaki double breast pocket shirt, a pair of heavy boots and a huge beer belly !!

    I, of course, am sporting a horned helmet, wolf skin jerkin and a very fetching leather wrap around skirt with matching sandals 🙂

  100. London says:

    The voice of sanity, thank you Sharkey, sometimes I think it is only me who thinks that way.

  101. SharkeySure says:

    Thats my mental images all stacked up for the day, thanks all !!

  102. Big Raddy says:

    Jaded is the word Chary.

    I think they are all either knackered or coming back from injury.

    But Domenech was doomed. How sad for his players that they are tarred by the same brush. You can imagine such patriots as WG and TH today…. they must be reeling. Their last WC, and having to play under a complete buffoon who has resigned and a French FA who have already chosen his successor.

    Funny though !

  103. Big Raddy says:

    That last comment smacks of paranoia London 😉

  104. SharkeySure says:

    Is this you and a pal Raddy..??

  105. SharkeySure says:

    The voice of sanity…moi?? Quelle surprise !!

  106. Morning all

    Sorry to interupt you but theres a NEW POST

  107. charybdis1966 says:

    “Voice of reason” – that reminds me, does anyone remember that guy called George Gale who used to give his opinion at the end of Thames TV news back in the 70’s? He was billed as “The voice of reason” or something similar.
    Probably showing my age there, he was on at the same time as Bill Grundy, who would introduce him with: “..and now, here’s George”

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