My rant about everything Arsenal

Last week we published parts one and two of GunnerN5’s rant ……………… here’s part 3.

Heart, Desire, Commitment, Passion, Pride.

Over the years we have been blessed to have players that exhibited many of these characteristics.  I’ve had the privilege of watching many of them both live and on T.V.

Names like;

Mercer, Lewis, D. Compton, Barnes, Forbes, Roper, Neil, Simpson, Storey, Mclintock, Graham, Kennedy, George, Nelson, Sansom, O’Leary, McNab, Brady, Adams, Dixon, Parlour, Winterburn, Bergkamp, Vieira and Van Persie all come to mind. They all had/have huge hearts and most of all – a winning mentality

You may remember others but my intent was to list some, not all, of the players that I remember as being worthy of mention. Sadly enough from our current squad only RVP stands out and this in my belief is the crux of our problem.

Seven are from Arsene’s early years, five of whom he inherited, only Van Persie and Vieira were his personal choices. Vermaelen and Wilshere are both showing the will that is required and could also become leaders.

When I look back on the past few years it has been really frustrating when good to great starts to a season simply evaporate away and leave us in basically the same position as previous seasons.

My contention is that our issue has little to nothing do with the size of our players or the size of our budget but has everything to do with the size of our player’s hearts.

Conditions and circumstances change for every game and we should adjust our game plan to suit the reality. Unfortunately this does occur and we end up at the end of the season wringing our hands in despair. We’ve learned to our detriment that beautiful football does not always equal winning football.

We can play Barca-ball till the cows come home and run around the meadow like little school boys – but us soon as we come up against teams of men who are used to playing in fields full of cow dung we show no heart or desire or commitment or passion and most of all no PRIDE.

We don’t demonstrate the hunger to go the extra step or track back or to make the tough tackle. Boy what I would give to see Adams heart in Arshavin’s body – what a player that would be – and frankly just the type of player(s) that we sorely need.

We never seem to learn from our mistakes……

Which brings to mind a Tommy Cooper joke.

He said doctor, “I’ve hurt my arm in several places”

The doctor said “well don’t go back to those places”“

In the end my question is “can players be taught these characteristics, or are they a part of ones DNA”?

End of part 3 of rant…

Written by GunnerN5

33 Responses to My rant about everything Arsenal

  1. 26may1989 says:

    Sorry, just finished typing this response to Exile’s post of yesterday when Rasp got today’s offering up. Will have a look at the latest chapter of The Rant later.

    Morning all, am back from a very restful hol in Sardinia – strongly recommend it, lovely place.

    Typically excellent post yesterday from Exile, and not too much abuse in response. What Islington had to say summarises the very good points about the cost of our tickets during a recession, and GN5 captured much of the macro dimension, about the tectonic movement in the fanbase at Arsenal and amongst the other top level clubs. It’s a source of regret for all of us, that the balance is shifting inexorably from the passionate fan to the family fan (and in my case and that of many others here of a certain age, that change is happening in one person’s lifetime), but it is nonetheless inevitable.

    The club defends the 6.5% increase saying 2.5% is VAT and there has been virtually no increase in the past few seasons. But that twists the the truth: the VAT reduction wasn’t passed on, and over the course of the last 10 years or so, the overall increases have been huge.

    But on the other hand, to defend the club, the criticism of season ticket prices (I know, a little beyond Exile’s post) is usually misconceived. That’s because our season ticket headline prices include 26 games (leaving holders the option of adding on League Cup games at usually cheap prices). In comparison, Chelsea, United and Spurs only include league games in the headline price but then force their fans to do things like buy tickets to all cup games at full price, so comparisons are usually done on a comparing apples with pears basis.

    None of which should take away from the fact that it is eye-wateringly expensive to go to Arsenal these days. Exile says he can recall paying £7 for standing at the North Bank. Well, I must be much older: I remember paying 80p as a kid (it was £1.10 for adults). I will now be trumped by Dandan, GN5 etc….

    Last word from me (for now 🙂 ) – when we talk about prices, we never seem to make the final leap and start criticising the real cause of high prices. By which I mean the players and their rapacious agents. It is these greedy, preened young men who suck up all of our hard-earned cash, and it is really their fault that fans even have to think of paying 10% of their income for going to footy matches (though of course, it’s all a matter of free choice in the end). The players all seem to think it is fine to be paid such vast amounts, often for doing very little, because that is what the market permits them to do. Personally, I find the lot of them pretty disgusting when I stop to think about their attitude to what they are are paid and where that comes from. Which is why I usually stop myself thinking about that side of things, for fear it will kill off my love of the game.

    Anyway, nice to be back, and hope to catch up with y’all soon. Am off out now.

  2. Bob N7 says:

    Agree with your rant. It appears from the outside that the players are not tough enough. They get looked after, told that they’re great etc. Is there someone who gives them a rocket, tells them to pull their finger out?
    I think there are some players who lack mental strength but I also suspect that they need someone else around who can tell what’s what- my vote(s) would go for Keown and/or Vieira. No disrespect to Pat Rice but maybe it’s time to bring in a fresh approach- if you keep with Wenger(last chance this season?) then that’s maybe where you can change things.
    Oh by the way a CB and DM who enjoy aerial combats and an upgrade for Arshavin and Bendtner/Vela would also help!
    Come on you Reds!

  3. Gunner38 says:

    As far as rants go, it is a little over zealous. If you are to be believed, we have no good players at all! There has to be mistakes – every team makes them and yes, I am the first to admit that we should have done better this year, but if you look at the spending power of 2/3rds of the Prem, then I think what we achieve every year is nothing short of a miracle. Sure, we’d all love to be Barca, endless trophies supplied by an endless bankroll – and all of the other so-called better clubs – who spend inordinate amounts of money and still don’t always get what they want. Look at Chelsea, Abramovich has spent the best part of £1billion, and still not won the one cup he wants – the Champions League! Instead of bitching, I think that it is high time many Gunners ralied around their team, ‘cos it’s easy to be a fan when times are good like 03/04, but nothing lasts forever. Imagine being a die-hard Hammer, or Pompey fan, those two clubs have had their fair share of hurt, but I’ll bet that the fans still back them 100%. SO FOR ALL THE TRUE GOONERS OUT THERE, F*** THE WHINGERS AND COME ON YOU RED AND WHITE ARMY!!

  4. El tel says:

    I would rather have players who use their heads than their heart.

    The problem last year wasn’t lack of effort it was lack of ideas. The best players are always the clever ones who see things early. Like DB10.

    It’s the English mentality that does the Arsenal. Why is everything in this country linked to having a war.

    By the way even wars are won with better strategies as the poor bastards with all the heart get shown the front line.

    Your list indeed shows players who pushed themselves to the limit but they also had immense talent to go with it.

    Inwould always prefer to see a TH14 screw the opposition rather than a Wayne fucking Rooney.

    It’s the English culture that never learns that skill must come before brawn.

  5. Danish Gooner says:

    You cant teach pride and will to win,it will have to be there when you are born.That is why this current Arsenal team will have to rid itself off players like Diaby,Denilson,Song,Rosicky,Almunia,Eboue,Gibbs,Squid etc before it will start to lift trophies.

  6. irish gooner says:

    its this characteristic that is stopping my team,,,thank god for wilserinho and rvp !!!!!!,,,i watched belarus vs france last night and alou diarra is a must buy for us,,,,,,,what an animal of a midfielder,,,he is our new paddy,,diaby nasri and sagna played well,,,nas in the middle!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  7. gunnern5 says:


    I never stated that we have no “good” players the fact is that although we, arguably, play the best football in the EPL my contention is that they lack the heart required to become the best team.

    I’m not sure if you are insinuating that I’m not a “true gooner” but for your reference the first game I watched at Highbury was in 1947.

  8. London says:


    Good post, I think most people will understand where you are coming from and the majority of those would agree with you but I am in the El Tel camp. In my opinion the reason we have not been successful at playing Barça-ball (good name btw) is because some of our players are simply not skilful enough; they do not have the close control to carry this out effectively. But, rather than revert to the fist pumping days of old I would prefer that we improved the quality of the playing staff. As El Tel says: more towards Bergkamp than Adams — just a thought.

  9. goonerwife says:

    One of the reasons i liked the addition of Chamakh and Kos. They are so proud to play for arsenal.

  10. goonerwife says:

    i also agree with El tel

  11. London says:

    GW 2:26pm

    Excellent point

  12. gunnern5 says:

    We are not far apart in our thinking. But I’ve seen way to many games where we demonstrated an abundance of skill but simply lacked the heart to win the game.

    You are correct about the staff, we certainly need the Adams and Keown personality types.

  13. goonermichael says:

    We need a mix of the PVs and DBs. I totally agree with the post.

  14. goonermichael says:

    Why would we need an English backbone. Most of these players are shit

  15. goonermichael says:

    While I posted that I missed a goal

  16. goonermichael says:

    Absolute shower of shit

  17. goonermichael says:

    That was milners fault.

  18. goonermichael says:

    A penlty made by Jacky and conceded by JD

  19. RockyLives says:

    Good post Gn5
    I agree 100%.
    The main reason I want some changes this summer is not because we need technically better players, it’s because we need an injection of players with a better mental attitude.
    We had a good enough squad to win the EPL this season – the fact that we didn’t was down to mentality, attitude, moral fibre, call it what you will.

    I happen to agree that it can’t be taught, but that if you have several players in the side who have it, the others raise their game to try and approach that level too.

    To respond to El Tel, Barcelona’s players use their heads and their hearts (they never stop running, closing down, competing). We have plenty of players with good footballing brains but, for whatever reason, they just don’t always work as hard as Barca’s.

  20. Rocky – if you check in again can you write another opener to the headlines post – I’m going to add November to October’s that’s already in draft.

  21. RockyLives says:

    Will do Peaches but might not be able to do until tomorrow (so won’t be available to use until Monday).

  22. London says:

    Just read that post and all the comments…, that is a sad blog.

    They are just a tad short of standing in a circle, closing their eyes, holding hands and wishing really hard that the most skilful player we have would leave……and these people claim to support Arsenal…..I despair.

  23. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Ah Ha,
    Capello is the highest paid International Manager. Anyway, being serious for a moment, Good Morning Anyone.

  24. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Bloody hell Micky, what’s a bloke to do. The grass is short, you don’t believe in clean cars and you have no mates to play with.

  25. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Get a life Micky. Just because you bugger off in the middle of the week, don’t expect everyone else to hang around for you. Miserable git.

  26. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Me thinks there has been an AA Coup while I was away. BR has taken control and has cleared off with all the comments on his Mugabe Summer Lockdown.

  27. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Its not just the Moles on your lawn that have been busy. Get your gun. You are the only one still on the loose. Hide.

  28. Hi Micky – I see you’ve gone back to capital letters 😉

  29. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Ahoy Peaches,
    I got lobbed in Moderation last week, and my come back hinged on me re-entering my details. Did not remember how they were originally.

  30. Rasp says:

    If we sell Bendtner and buy Defoe, I’m giving up football 👿

  31. goonerbegood says:

    rasp…..dont’t be surprised …

    with wenger nothing surprises me any more .

    last season for me was a great chance ,which was knowingly,willingly let slip away.

    if only this new season wenger ,………….

    pls arsene, buy don’t even need a whole some change, only small adjustment in the mechanical dept,will solve the problem.

    if some players want to leave the club,well mighty arsenal fc,have to do ,what is good ,for mighty arsenal fc.

    if only ,if…. the manager ….

    we need cup master players,
    players with heart*pride*ruthless but yet

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