Arsène Wenger: Last Rites or Last Laugh?

My goodness, what a feeding frenzy we’re witnessing in the media. These headlines are all from the past 24 hours:

Pressure Mounts on Wenger (Irish Times)

Arsène Wenger: I Will Not Quit (Daily and Sunday Express)

Wenger… In Retreat From Hard Reality (The Independent)

A Manager Alone As His Team Crumbles Around Him (New York Times)

Arsenal May Be In Battle of Relegation (Bleacher Report)

Bruised and Battered (Bangalore Mirror)

Sack Race – Arsène Wenger Next to Go? (

Wenger: I Won’t Quit (Sky Sports)

Wenger in Trouble (Fiji Times)

Reporters and editors can’t help it. When they get a scent of blood they want to pursue the story to its conclusion – the resignation or sacking of their chosen target.

It’s a common enough phenomenon in politics (a junior Minister is perceived to have made a couple of gaffes, the press round on him, follow him, dig into his past, ask leading questions until eventually he quits or gets the boot).

It’s also now common in football, particularly early in the campaign, when trying to provoke the first managerial sacking of the season is a sport and a pastime, like bagging the first grouse on the 12th of August or being first back into London with this year’s Beaujolais Nouveau.

The reporters like to think they are impartial chroniclers of events (I know, I’ve been one). What they seem unable to grasp is that in certain circumstances they cease being dispassionate observers. Instead they become key players in whatever drama they have fixated on, with an influence completely disproportionate to their proper role.

It’s like saying you simply want to report a trial and then turning up and organising the lynch mob.

As the headlines above show, there are large swathes of the British media right now who can smell a hanging where Arsene Wenger is concerned – and they’re eager to start building the scaffold.

And although it may seem comical to see their frenzied rabble-rousing echoed in news reports from Fiji to Bangalore, I used those examples to show how the international media takes its lead from what’s written on the home front and how the story of Arsenal’s “crisis” goes worldwide.

Take the Wenger – I Will Not Quit headlines.

As far as I know, there has never been the slightest suggestion from Arsène (or Arsenal) that he would leave the club.

Instead, those oh-so impartial reporters used the old “when did you stop beating your wife?” trick. If you ask a man if he is going to resign and he says “no” you have precisely zero amount of story. Except that if you have traded your chronicler role for one of agent provocateur, it gives you licence to run a headline saying “Wenger Denies He’s Quitting”, thereby publishing a story that implies the idea of him quitting had been on the agenda when, in fact, it never had.

It’s a subtle form of lying.

So what’s the rap sheet against Arsenal’s manager?

He has played three games this season, won one, drawn one and lost one. He has not bought as many players as his critics think he should have. His captain has been sold. His squad has been hit by a blight of injuries and suspensions.

I’m not going to sit here and say everything is rosy. I am certainly in the camp of wanting more signings before the end of the month. But to describe this situation as a meltdown, a disaster, a crisis is way over the top.

An away point at Newcastle is hardly a disgrace, ditto a home win and clean sheet against the fourth best team in Italy and as for losing to Liverpool thanks to an offside goal, well…

I saw one headline after Saturday’s game saying that Arsenal had been “humbled” by Liverpool.

There was certainly some humbling being dished out in that match, but it wasn’t at Arsenal. A mightily assembled and mightily expensive Liverpool side could not get the better of a largely second-string Arsenal until a bad piece of officiating gifted them the game.

Given how good Arsenal’s debutants were and how poor some of ‘Pool’s expensive acquisitions were, I would be much more concerned now if I was a Scouser and not a Gooner.

The worrying thing is that all this negative coverage (of both Arsène and Arsenal) really can have a tangible effect. It might deter potential signings from joining us, it might harden the attitudes of current players who have doubts about the club’s direction and we know it massively influences a minority of fans. At its worst, it might even have the effect it’s aiming for and convince Arsene that he really should throw in the towel.

Arsene – if you’re reading this (and I know you often take a peep at AA when you’re on the bog) – please pay no heed. The pressure on you must be awful, but take some comfort from this:

I am keeping all these headlines and all these stories and at the end of the season, when the world hasn’t exploded, when we have again competed well on all fronts and finished in the top four, I will, on your behalf, write to all the authors and demand their apology.

They want your head on a plate.

Let’s strengthen the squad, galvanise the team and, instead, give them a faceful of plate silverware.



346 Responses to Arsène Wenger: Last Rites or Last Laugh?

  1. We must ssigns some players before the window shuts this squad is not strong enough to compleat with the likes of City Mancs Chaves !Really starting to worry just hope we get though tomorrow night Come on you Gunners you can do it Sod the bloody press trying to kick us when we are down !!!!!!!

  2. hahahaha…..according to my survey, Wenger is the most famous icon in today’s football.

  3. Magneto says:

    Good article.

  4. trugun says:

    At last some common sense, well said sport.

  5. atac says:

    arsene and arsenal would not be in this postion, if like all gooners have said for the last 4 years buy a decent f**king centre back pairing.stop buying 3rd division bargain basement players and kids you come unstuck(see league cup 2nd goal farce).the media have always had it in for wenger(not enough english in his teams etc etc)giving him a hard time in the media is not new,what is are the rumblings from fans who have seen ticket prices increase and for what?…i luv arsenal and wenger but spend some f**king money and buy cahill.the media smell blood because arsenal fans are unsettled we know where we need to improve the team so wake up arsenal!!!!!!!!!!!ps i look foward to playing in the tinpot euro cup thing with the shite from the lane maybe meet them in the final,thats if we dont get stoke in the semi

  6. i dont thing sacking wenger will solve the problems in arsenal rather compoud the problem, the board is also to be blame for adding arsenal’s problems

  7. WiganGooner says:

    Stunning article Rocky, excellent view on how the language used in the media is designed to sell papers, not tell the truth.

    Very impressive article (again).


  8. Illybongani says:

    so you’ll be happy with 4th place thn Rocky? You after a place on the Board or something? Or is it that a pessimist is never disappointed?

  9. London says:

    Superb read Rocky

    And like WG thanks for the easy to understand explanation as to how the press twist stories, it is one thing to know it it is another to articulate it.

    Your the man.

  10. Jamie says:

    I think Wenger should stay for all his many faults.

    I think Gazidis and Law should go, they have failed to do the in and out transfer dealing prior to a very difficult August and a vital Champs League qualifier and that is incompetence. Pure incompetence.

    Bring Dein back. Give Arsene some proper help.

    The problem for Wenger is that those two halfwits have left him with threadbare squad going to a tough qualifier and to Man utd with one point out of six in the bag.

    If we don’t get through tomorrow and we get a going over at old Trafford then he has to survive the international break and if the headlines already look like that he could be in real trouble.

    He needs some help!

  11. Wrightydehenry says:

    Best article I’ve read in ages our team needs us more than ever as everyone has the knives out. I’m sure the press would see toppling Wenger as a major coup!!! Whatever happens I’ll still be an Arsenal fan tomorrow, next year and ten years later……..!

  12. Jamie says:

    Good article rocky btw.

  13. oz gunner says:

    @ kelsey

    great article yesterday

    @ evonne

    haha how can i forgot about your love for podolski, jags and co. Cheers for the youtube clips, funny stuff indeed

  14. London says:


    Where does the author imply that he is happy with forth, it is a rhetorical question he doesn’t, so stop acting like a sheep regurgitating what you have read on other blogs and find ways to support the club.

  15. Northbanker says:

    I don’t normally add my views, but I have to say that, like you, I have just about had enough of the total and utter rubbish that we all have to put up with day in day out. The media are totally dictating the views of football fans and sadly this is now spreading to our own fans as well. We are now in a position where football fans don’t think for themselves based on what they see week in week out, they pick up The Sun, or The Daily Star and read a load of rubbish believing it to be true. I mean did Liverpool ‘outplay’ us as I’ve read?

    I was at the game and if anyone else there tells me that the game was not heading for 0-0 then I dunno what you were watching. Funny thing is that everyone is saying the sending off changed the game…it was actually the freak own goal. Yes Liverpool had more of the ball after the sending off, but did they really threaten?

    And all this with their full squad, bar Gerrard and Johnson (and I reckon Kelly is better than Johnson anyway). Compare that to us where we had 6 players missing and only 1 major signing! If Wenger buys a few players in the next week then Liverpool don’t worry me at all. What amazes me is that we’ve been hearing that we’ve not won a trophy for 2, 3, 4, 5, 6…7 years!!! Yet Liverpool are only one year behind us, having won the FA Cup a year after us and no one mentions it. When do you hear that Liverpool have not won anything for 3, 4, 5…6 years? And this is the same Liverpool that the press would tell you is a bigger club that the might Arsenal, so how does that work?

  16. Itopa Okene says:

    You said “it might deter potential signings” you were in slumb with myopic aw & d lame board. Why didn’t he sign b4 this ugly scenario? Instead any of us arsenal fans 2 die again bcos of aw’s frivolous philosophy, he shall either quit or die! Amen

  17. Illybongani says:

    London – I found a way to support the team. I paid £60 for a seat vs Liverpool. And that’s something I have been doing since my first game vs Beveran Waas in 1970. I’ve also found ways to support them by travelling all over the UK and Europe. So, in my opinion, I’m entitled to my opinion.

  18. Illybongani says:

    I am keeping all these headlines and all these stories and at the end of the season, when the world hasn’t exploded, when we have again competed well on all fronts and finished in the top four, I will, on your behalf, write to all the authors and demand their apology.

    how is this a rhetorical question?

  19. London says:

    Jamie @9.57

    I am curious: which transfer dealings has Gazidis let Wenger down on?

    I am sure we both agree that it is Wenger’s role to identify the talent and I am assuming that it is Gazidis’ job to negotiate the terms of contract. Your comment suggests that Gazidis has let Wenger down, which brings me to my original question which transfer dealings has Gazidis let Wenger down on?

  20. Scott says:

    I can’t believe it takes a blog like this to show what a bunch of lying scumbags the press are.
    Seriously,I read post after post bagging Wenger for lying when he doesn’t sign players he is rumoured to be interested in.
    Wenger himself does not say he is looking at a player,the press do….hence its a rumour. The player doesn’t sign,yet Wenger is the list…how the hell can people explain this?
    Wake up,get off Wengers back and use your brains.
    Ignore what the press write,because,especially concerning rumours,99% is bullshit.

  21. London says:


    So, we are the same age.

    “When we have again competed well on all fronts and finished in the top four”

    This does not say that the author is happy finishing fourth in the negative way that you are suggesting.

    “So you’ll be happy with 4th place thn Rocky?”

    Get it now?

  22. GunnerPete says:


    As Ive said many time recently in defence of MY club….Im in my 62nd year as a Gunner and have seen some shockingly long period of dispare (mainly caused as now by our low life board). Right now after somehow keeping AFC in the top four for 15 years on a shoe string, Arsene is trying to pick a team from the injury ridden remnents of a squad to play in Italy against one of their very top sides. AND what has he got for it? The worst disloyalty I can remember in my association with our great club. The press I expect to hate us and to knife us even when things are going along well, and they love it when we have some problems. The FA are on the edge of their seats every week hoping for a chance to humiliate our great club using any and every luke warm excuse possible. With all this on a permanenet basis you would have expected the real Gunners to stand up and fight for our greatest ever manager who bought us to where we are..Stadium and all ! But no, there is a queue a mile long of ‘so called ‘ fans, who I suspect are in the lower teenage spectrum iel no idea what being a Gunner is all about!

    Well let me forecast to all you scum bags who should be supporting the Chavs, the Spuds or Manure etc…….(A) Arsene will sort out this mess with or without the boards support, (B) He will sign a couple of players to add to the six already in (C) This squad will surprise all of you this year, just wait until you actually see a full team before you judge.

    Finally….just remember that Manure recently went 20+ years without a title…Liverpool another 20+ years….and the Spuds 50 years……AND DO YOU REALLY THINK CHELSKI & CITY WOULD HAVE ANY TROPHIES WITHOUT BUYING THEM?

    So in a nutshell, support out great club and the finest manager in the world or sod off!

  23. g clarke says:

    sensible and interesting i cannot understand why sky sports have the same undermining attitude against arsenal really anoying other teams have arab or russian money or great debt mu half billion we have our youngsters but they are bril youngsters world class youngsters this is what we have get behind them and enjoy the ride

  24. London says:

    Hi GunnerPete

    Excellent comment, you have no idea how many times I wish I could have used your last sentence.

  25. Illybongani says:

    GunnerPete – I admire your positivity, I’ve been there more often than not. At the start of last season up to post-Christmas was probably the last time. Are we stronger than then? No, and we came up miserably short. In fact it was relegation form towards the end, and pre-season and early season have not shown anything to motivate me that anything’s changed. I spent large parts on Saturday with my head in my hands. I think the realisation hit me that we are so far behind the Big 3 (it ain’t a Big 4 anymore) has finally hit home

  26. Remember what Wenger said in the autumn off 2007.The kids had beaten Wigan and Sheff Utd in the cc.He said when my kids mature they will dominate English soccer. FF to spring 2008. Eduardo suffers an excruciating injury and the season collapses.
    This was followed by crashes every spring the next three years.
    Since then he has beenb piling up kid after kid.
    Well this sesason could once and for all be a watershed one.If the gunners are eliminated in the cl what next. This shows Wenger’s kid project aint working and yet he shows no sign of getting the experienced players.
    If the gunners continue to decline,there’s only one way to stop it.,
    He should be axed and the gunners get someone who is more pragamatic and down to earth who knows football is about winning and not making thirty passes to shoot and score.
    We have enough of this passing to eternity.Time to play ugly football and win even though it’s anti soccer.

  27. Jamie says:

    London –

    Gazidis and Law failed to get;

    1) Alvarez who went to Inter after we had been negotiating for four weeks.
    2) Failed badly on Mata, failed to understand a buy out clause that even Spurs could understand.
    3) failed on the Cesc sale 25-30m
    4) failed on the Nasri sale, he is still with us and we still haven’t got replacements.
    5) spent four weeks tying up Joel Campbell. We had to re-negotiate three times with a young lad from Costa Rica, surely that tells you how inept they are.

    There is no way that Wenger didn’t want Mata and Alvarez and centre back before August, we don’t have any of them.

    I am pretty sure if my boss gave me three jobs to do and I didn’t achieve any of them, I might have some questions

  28. Illybongani says:

    Jamie – you can add to that list Chris Samba, who NEARLY signed for us in the January Window.

  29. Iceman says:

    Gunnerpete, will be interested to read your comments if we lose to Udinese and United. Will you still be as stalwart or will you open your eyes and realise that we are a struggling club who have no idea what direction they are going in. Wenger was once the greatest manager but he has failed to adapt, grow and move with the pace of the league. The board have not helped him and I feel some sorrow here, as when we had Dein he took control of lots of the logistical headaches and allowed Arsene to do his job-coach. The board themselves are only interested in business and making money – but even here the cracks are showing as we all know that ticket sales have tailed off and feeling for the club is stilted. They have missed the point – it sis okay to make lots of money but not at the cost of the club – the team, who they have failed miserably. We needed two or three marquee signings three years ago, not now with only 8 days of the window left. I too, like you have supported Arsenal for a long time -40 years, but am genuinely worried about our lack of activity or ambition. Fourth place or CL qualification is not the benchmark, we need to re-establish ourselves as the benchmark. Sadly, with 5 years of squad depletion I feel that this is going to be a long season and even longer before we are again viewed as the benchmark for success.

  30. London says:


    Of course Wenger would have liked to sign Mata, every club in Europe would have, so don’t think for a minute that he was some Wenger unearthed gem, that kid had been impressing in Spain the same way that Torres had before he finally went to Liverpool. In brief Mata is already a huge star in Spain, and every manager in the world knew about him.

    Now to the deal, Arsenal showed some interest, as soon as this happens the selling club tells the world, the reason for this is to try and get other clubs involved in the hope of creating a bidding war. This is exactly what happened with Campbell but no one else came in.
    In the case of Mata it worked Chelsea showed some interest and we had to back down as we were never going to be able to compete financially.

    You are off course if you think that had Gazidis acted quickly we could have signed Mata.

    Read this.

  31. kelsey says:

    Great post as usual Rocky,

    and remaining upbeat at this time is hard for many.

    I only go back 53 years of my support so no need to say anymore as Gunnerpete has covered it so well.
    however we may rue the day that kroenke got the major share holding.
    Interesting to see if nasri plays tomorrow as i have read mixed reports , but it does seem not is all well in the boardroom and AW for all his loyalty may be now getting stabbed in the back.
    Massive game tomorrow but let’s just wait and see (or pray 😉 )

  32. Henry M. says:

    I sinceely think that most people are not sincere to AW.It is either they are paid 2 do so or they are hypocrites.AW obviously is blinded by his so called philosophy,which has proven 2 be inefficient 4 d last 6yrs.Wenger is running an Academy n not a Club.He produces players 2 sell,not 2 win trophies.Rocky,u of all people shud hav known that.

  33. London says:


    I would be interested in reading your comments if you got hit by a bus tomorrow, what a sad, fatalistic way to live a life.

    Supporting is hoping that we will win, not imagining the worse case scenario, why don’t you worry about a plane crash on the way to Italy with all the team on board, ridiculous absolutely ridiculous.

    Oh to be able to use Gunner Pete’s last sentence.

  34. Illybongani says:


    I think you are spot on about Mata. He is just too good for us. And that’s the problem we are always going to have. If the player is super, super quality then he will go to Man City, Chelsea, Paris St Germain, Malaga or that Russian mob. We will have to make do with kids and grow our own…until they become super, super quality and they’re pinched by Man City, Chelsea…..

  35. Illybongani says:

    Sorry – that should be LONDON is spot on…

  36. London says:


    I knew there was a real supporter in there some where, in my unofficial capacity welcome to the blog.

  37. Jamie says:

    I have already read I thanks London.

    Dein was neither a genius of a guru, just someone who new how to run a club.

    I am also fairly sure I have seen a bit more of Mata than you.

    Sky Sports – Graham Hunter said at the time of Valencia friendly with Benfica that Mata was devastated by the fact that Arsenal didn’t firm up the offer before the get out clause expired.(whatever he says now)

    I al not off course, mata selling clause expired so the price went up. We acted slowly. We don’t do business well.

    How did we only get 25-30 for Fabregas?
    How are we still negotiating on Nasri?
    How have we not signed a centre back? Are you seriously telling me Wenger hasn’t identified one.
    And Alvarez you didn’t answer that one either?

    They have no idea how to run a football club. No one on the board does.

  38. Iceman says:

    London – what a ridiculous comment, how old are you? I doubt whether you have ‘supported’ Arsenal with such a passion – Anfield ’89, Old Trafford, Spuds twice, eating, breathing and living Arsenal! I guess you would be happy to pay £1600 for a season ticket to watch prospects and not moan then? You are exactly the sort of supporter this club needs, blinkered, immature and lots of very deep pockets.

  39. Rasp says:

    London, as an alternative to your @ 10:38, Jamie could have a look at this….

  40. Jamie says:

    Illybongani – who’s fault is that transfer policy?

  41. gnarleygeorge9 says:


    The first casualty of the season, if you like, was the News of the World 😆

  42. Illybongani says:

    Jamie – it’s nobody’s fault in particular. The simple fact is some clubs have more money than us. all I would say is some CLUBs have more money than us….but no OWNERs have more money than our owners, well maybe Man City!

  43. Iceman says:

    @ London – just to reiterate we USED TO be the benchmark…

    ‘It was a question of sporting achievement, not money. Arsenal and Tottenham were both interested in me but they did not compare with the Blues.

    ‘I want the Premier League title and this is possible at Chelsea.’

    Nuff said really!

  44. Jamie says:

    Rasp – u read all the articles on this site and don’t needed to be pointed to the archives.

    If I have reacted strongly it is due to be patronised by London, who seems to think I might not have heard of Juan Mata before he signed for Chelsea.

    We have less debt than any of the other top four clubs and we should be spending or we won’t stay there.

    We need to stop thinking like a small club and the Americans needs to take some of the blame for that.


  45. kelsey says:

    Iceman,,you are totally wrong about London he has supported the club for decades,he just takes a different angle sometimes on various debates.
    Support is a lifelong marriage, trophies are a bonus, you should know that yourself.

    I still strongly believe that Wenger is the best man for the job, but there has to be a clear direction from the board who have definitely sent out mixed messages since Kroenke took over and our beloved chairman is not the best speaker in the world.
    Wenger won’t be sacked but I can see him leaving sooner rather than later.does he need all this daily shite from all and sundry.

  46. Rocky,
    great article however I disagree yes there was offside in both goals but the turning point came with Koscelny’s injury which put an inexperienced CD in place then when Frimpong got sent off we had to rely on Lansbury again no big game experience and liverpool took advantage of that. I do agree however that liverpool until Frimpongs red card were largely ineffectual and did not look like scoring. The trouble was we looked as if we were impotent going forward Ramsey has shown that he can’t take a game by scruff of the neck like when playing against england for wales he has shown he cant dominate the midfield unless he has some enforcers there. Walcott has received a bit of abuse for his efforts in game when in fact most of the time he received the ball he was running against two players not an easy task I felt that Arshavin was as poor as ramsey and was as ineffective. At some point I would like Wenger use Gervinho on right and Miyiachi on left have Frimpong and Song as your holding players and move Wilshere into attacking midfield role he can pass the ball and is aggressive in winning ball back higher up the pitch.It is blindingly obvious we are short by four players a midfielder, a striker and two defenders a CD and Left back would bring adequate cover in whilst injuries and suspensions clear up.

  47. Jamie says:

    Had enough money to sing Mata and Cahill and if we didn’t before the summer we certainly do now.

  48. Rasp says:


    I wasn’t being critical of you in any way.

    Unfortunately the behind the scenes politics are a mystery. We should be able to spend but we don’t. I think kelsey’s point is very interesting.

    I don’t understand why Fiszmann (who had the club’s best interest at heart) was so keen to sell to Kroenke when the American could cash in his chips and make a very quick buck by selling on to Usamov.

    Silent Stan is not in the habit of letting anyone know what his plans are. Its all very frustrating, we should try to respect one anothers views. As I have said before, we shouldn’t blame other bloggers for what concerns us about the club.

  49. Illybongani says:

    If I’m honest, I think the reason I’m so pissed off is that Arsene’s spoiled me. He’s tantalised and teased me with his Wengerball and I have totally bought into it. I want more of it, I don’t want to go back to the crap I had to watch in the 70s and 80s (up to ’89 of course). Wengerball makes me horny and gives me a semi. His wife was definitely prettier than anybody else’s.

    Unfortunately, his Mrs has put on a few pounds and gained a few wrinkles. What she really needs is a boob job and a face lift – and these things cost money.

    I don’t really want to see a divorce but if the Old Girl is going to pot at least we’ll have to start sniffing around some younger totty.

  50. gnarleygeorge9 says:


    Will Mata be playing under the same manager in 5 months 😆 Being chavs manager is more dangerous than being one of Henry VIII’s wives.

  51. Jamie says:

    Rasp- Kelsey point rings true with me too.

    I don’t blame bloggers. I was making to point that I think the board are inept with transfer dealings and London was defending them.

    Im not claiming Arsenal could have gone after Aguero or Tevez but there are plenty of players we could have signed and that we obviously tried to sign and they have made a mess in every transfer dealing, in or out all summer.

    Usually have a lot of time for Londons post and of course yours Rasp.

    I think I’ll retire for the day before causing to much trouble.

  52. Rasp says:

    😛 gg, it does seem that one feature of ownership by the super rich is that the manager’s job is always ‘temporary’

  53. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    Ok, people. The bottom line is The Arsenal must advance against Udinese. It is probably the most important fixture Arsenal has had in ages. To advance will allow the Arsenal faithfull to stick it right up every smart arse that has had a cheap shot at our beloved.

  54. gnarleygeorge9 says:


    We are the same old Arsenal, taking the piss 😆

  55. Wonderman says:

    @ London
    ‘Supporting is hoping that we will win, not imagining the worse case scenario, why don’t you worry about a plane crash on the way to Italy with all the team on board, ridiculous absolutely ridiculous.’……top top comment imo

    I have to say I agree with Jamie’s assertion that the board seems to be underperforming. I believe what we are witnessing is Gazidis learning on the job . For all the talk about being a big club we are not currently behaving like one. How deals have taken so long to complete is a mystery and our PR department is woeful.

    Unfortunately in blogsphere we have a plethora of egotistical consumers masquerading as supporters who believe that because they pay £x for their tickets that gives them the god given right to have everything their way.

    Great post Rocky we all need to remember media is about selling . I used to work for Associated Newspapers and when you see the amount of money these corporations offset in expected legal costs you realise that if publishing a ‘story’ boosts circulation and in turn advertising the revenue accrued far outweighs what would be paid in compensation . There is therefore no moral or truth compass what so ever

  56. London says:


    You are not causing any trouble here and as you are a respected regular I was purposely trying to be polite rather than patronising.

    I did not infer that you had never heard of Mata I was responding to your suggestion that Gazidis did not act quickly enough to sign Mata.

    As for Graham Hunter said…………………read Rocky’s post again above and you should realise what a low life, lying toe rag Graham Hunter really is.

    I will get round to the rest of your allegations but I thought I would start with the Mata accusation.

  57. Rasp says:

    Jamie @ 11:22,

    I agree (not the bit about retiring for the rest of the day).

    I have several mini beefs with the club

    The PR
    The failure to learn from mistakes
    The tendency to train the shooting instincts out of our players
    The PR – oh did I already mention that?

    But all in all, I’ll take what we’ve got and hope that one day all will be revealed.

  58. Jamie says:

    London – no worries. Respect your opinion.

    I’m not going to get In an argument about Graham Hunter with a gooner. He was not the only one pointing out that Mata could be signed by Arsenal at that time.

  59. London says:


    If I gave the impression that all is well with the board then it may be time for me to adjust things.

    All is obviously not perfect but it really gets up my nose when people blame the board for not acting quick enough to sign Mata. It conjures the image of runnning into Tesco’s and the first club that puts player in their trolly gets to sign him.

    Any way I forgot to say good match report, you are made of sterner stuff than I.

  60. Illybongani says:

    Did anyone else pick up on young Jenkinson going down with cramp after 80 mins or so? I didn’t bother watching it on TV. I thought he was one of the fittest players pre-season?

  61. Danny says:

    Illy I was also at that Beveren Waas match in 1970 – my first match was against Huddersfield, Legue Cup semis 1968 . Pete I haven’t been supporting the team as long as you but you’ve got to admit that what has been going on in the last 3 years is just appalling. Yes we’ve had a lot of bad luck but however you look at it we’ve started the new season off terribly – if we lose tomorrow it will be nothing short of a disaster. I miss Highbury and wish we’d never moved – its all been downhill since that last match there against Wigan.

  62. gunnern5 says:

    Jamie re your 10:25.

    Rocky should add your post to both his headlines and archives as it is nothing more than an opinion based on negative speculation by the media and completely non- factual.

    It’s posts like yours that fuel the anti Arsenal fires.

    If you feel that I’m being patronizing then so be it.

    Oh, if you want us to believe your points why don’t you give us the source of your inside knowledge?

  63. Illybongani says:

    Danny – don’t get me started about the new stadium. A concrete, souless monstrosity. Every time I go I still don’t know what bloody end I’m in! Dugout…check. Away supporters….check. I must be in the Clock End today!

  64. gunnern5 says:

    |Rocky, that’s a great headline post.

    Keep them coming as it’s articles like your’s that may, just may, give the anti Arsenal gang some food for thought.

  65. Red Arse says:

    Hi Gunnerpete, 🙂

    Excellent comments earlier!

  66. Red Arse says:

    Hi Gunnerpete, 🙂

    Excellent comments earlier!

    (I have repeated that because my earlier post disappeared into the ether, and it was worth acknowledging your commonsense attitude.) 🙂

  67. Wonderman says:


    The problem appears that many people form opinions with little facts. Unless we have inside information, we have no idea how quick or slow the board is working. There are several things that I am not happy with but I just cannot see that our cup is half empty

  68. Red Arse says:


    I have read thru the comments posted earlier, and on the face of it there are many interesting points made.

    But, and there is a but — a lot of hot air and soap boxing has gone on about what Arsenal/Arsene did or did not do, and the verbal sparring was based upon what?

    Rocky’s excellent Post was making the point that fans are influenced, whether they like to admit it, or not, by the media reports, which are often distorted, and some of the comments above prove this point.

    Take the argument surrounding Mata. A says this – B denies what A says; A gets cross – B gets cross etc, etc. Over what?

    Take today’s papers and depending upon what you read you could come up with very different interpretations of what went on.

    Paper “A” says that Arsenal did not make any bid for Mata. Paper B says that Mata turned down offers from Spurs and Arsenal. So the arguments above seem to depend on which paper you each read.
    You pays your money and you takes your pick.

    But – here we go again – what did Arsene Wenger say at a recent press conference when asked this question; “Can you tell us what the situation is regarding Juan Mata?” Arsene’s reply was “I have no interest in signing Mata. We are not looking at that!”.

    Now you might want to argue over whether he should or should not have been interested, but arguing over what has been written in the papers, the only place you can have got your information, seems a little droll, especially after reading Rocky’s Post.

    Irony or what?

    By the way Rocky, spot on, again, and I loved it! 🙂

  69. Danny says:

    Hey Illy that new stadium is probally cursed. My grandfathers ashes were buried at Highbury. The board said they moved all the urns to the Eimrates. Need I say more…..

  70. WiganGooner says:


    It seems that your bitterness does not finish at the management or the board but indeed at a ground who’s design and implementation has won awards.

    I am impressed with the stamina and ferocity that you show when voicing your hatred for all things Arsenal currently.

    I’m not qualified to determine what makes a good football ground, but I like the Emirates, hell its not Highbury, but then nowhere else ever could be. It is our home, we aren’t going anywhere, get used to it. The Arsenalisation is still going on and we are trying to make it ours 🙂 So chillax and soon you will know which way you face.

    I think you need to understand this, however mad or angry you are, Arsene will do what he wants to do. Gazidis will do what he wants to do and will be guided by the board. Kroenke as major shareholder will do what he wants to do.

    Sit back and enjoy the ride, or join the scum at the lane.


  71. Illybongani says:

    Hmmm…I bet your grandads life long wish was to be buried on the Queensland Road industrial site. Unbelievable. I thought it says on the tin that we do things with style??

  72. Red Arse says:

    This ‘ashes’ conversation is on the verge of becoming tasteless. have a little respect for the relatives of deceased arsenal supporters please.

  73. Iceman says:

    @ kelsey 11:06 – I have no doubt that London loves Arsenal, just like we all do, but everyone is entitled to their opinion. We are in a very frustrating period for the club, and in an ideal world we would be sitting pretty right now. Sadly, that is not the case and although I know how London feels, it does not hurt to stick your neck out and say what you really feel. I can remember losing to Zaragoza on penalties and feeling like life was over, so I know what it is like to love your club and stomach defeat. I just want change for the better.

  74. WiganGooner says:


    What did you expect the club to do? Leave the urns in the middle of a housing development? Surely the gentleman’s wish was to be buried at the home of Arsenal FC? Which is now the Emirates.

    Like it or not, it is the truth of the matter.


  75. Jamie says:

    Goonern5 im not going to spend the day finding the sources of articles from June and July Ive got better things to do. if you didn’t follow the news that’s not my problem.

    I apologise we have obviously had a very well handled transfer policy this summer, that’s why we are so desperate that we will have to play a kid out of place at left back tomorrow and possibly recall Bendtner and Nasri who both want out.

    God I hope we have more organised summers like this.

    I get behind my team, thanks and I am not Ill- informed.

  76. WiganGooner says:


    My apologies, I am getting a little frustrated today it seems 🙂


  77. WiganGooner says:


    Have you thought that our hands might have been tied to the fortunes of Cesc and Nasri?

    What if Nasri turned to Wenger and said “Pay me what Cesc gets and I will stay” .. now Wenger knew Cesc wanted to go but he wanted to try and convince him to stay another year.

    Wenger couldn’t afford both of them, so he let Cesc go, with the full intention of holding onto Nasri, who has since been turned by the money from Citeh.

    In terms of signings, Arsenal have spent over 25 million on players this summer alone. We don’t have an Oligarch but we are competing in the market. There is still time to sign players. Don’t give up hope.


  78. gunnern5 says:

    Jamie says:

    August 23, 2011 at 12:29 pm

    Goonern5 im not going to spend the day finding the sources of articles from June and July Ive got better things to do. if you didn’t follow the news that’s not my problem.


    Jamie, thank you for proving my point.

    Your information is based on nothing more then negative speculation in the media that is designed to sell their brand with no consideration for authenticity.

    I prefer to get the facts from

  79. Illybongani says:

    Wigan – I have a lifelong emotional connection with the Arsenal. And like any relationship we have good times and bad times. I reserve the right to be angry and to sulk and to do whatever I want to do. I’ve paid my dues by 40 odd years of unstinting loyalty. I was one of about 13,000 at a Division 1 game in the mid-70s, when we were in relegation trouble. That’s just how things were then, we couldn’t do much about it.

    The situation we now find ourselves in is quite the opposite. It’s within our grasp to sort it. But for some reason we will not. The moaning would stop if we went out and bought Cahill, Samba, Parker, Jagielka, Baines (perm any 3 from 5). If we still were struggling at the end of the season, I would say “well we got what we thought we needed and it didn’t work…c’est la vie”

    But to procrastinate and do nothing is gross misconduct in my eyes.

    ps – please don’t do the “join the scum” thing with me. It is what I would expect from the school playground.

  80. Jamie says:

    Wigan gooner – i undertand your point and it is well put as ever but look at net spending, we haven’t spent a penny in fact we haven’t spent a penny (net) in five years if you study the accounts.

    Fine sell Nasri and Fabregas but sell them early and buy replacements.

    Let’s face it we couldn’t have got any less for Cesc.

    Selling Nasri and Fabregas and buying Gervinho and three sprogs is not competing.

    Rasp – agree PR is terrible.

  81. Danny says:

    The point here is something else but obvious. Some of us have been supporting the club forever and whenever we make a negative comment we get “sod off down the Lane” shoved down our throats. Well I’m sorry if some people feel like that but I’m sick of it. Regarding Wenger – all good things in life have a sell by date – remember that. Let’s see what’ll happen tomorrow.

  82. WiganGooner says:


    The emotional connection is fine, all I said was there is nothing that you can do about it and moaning about it won’t achieve anything. I was suggesting you relax, take in the real news and enjoy the football season.

    Whatever happens this transfer window will be borne through til Jan and we will see where we are at. Being impatient now is pointless, we still have up until the 1st Sept to complete player transfers.

    So, chill out, relax and enjoy the ride.


  83. WiganGooner says:


    The Cesc transfer was indeed awful business, but it was awful business that was unavoidable. Cesc wouldn’t negotiate terms with another team and therefore we were in a one-horse race, a one buyer auction and they never end well.

    We got the best deal we could out of a Barca team that habitually hates paying us what players are worth because they hate us stealing their young kids.

    Are you suggesting that Jenkinson isn’t good enough for Arsenal? I thought he played extremely well against ‘pool. I think you should reserve judgement on O-C until you have seen him play in an arsenal shirt as I will.

    We DO need players, but we have time to buy them.


  84. Danny says:

    Yeah Illy – those 70s matches – remember Terry Mancini’s goal? We laugh now but there was a feeling that we were going to be relegated that year – amazing just a couple years after coming 2nd and 4 years after the double.

  85. critic says:


  86. Illybongani says:

    Wigan…I’ve enjoyed the ride for 40 years, even the barren years I enjoyed. Being part of the Arsenal family, going to places like Notts Forest in the cup when they were practically unbeatable and coming back with a win. It’s just we’re about to come off the rails and crash and burn.

    The alternative to moaning about it? Keep calm and carry on. The problem is I’ve done that for the last 4 years.

  87. gunnern5 says:


    Yep some years in the 70’s were dour but overall our aveage attendance was 35,024 which was 91.16% of capacity which shows loyal support for the club.

  88. Rasp says:

    The cyclical nature of the comments today demonstrate perfectly the source of the divide. Both sides can quote difinitive evidence and can also rubbish the other’s speculation.

    The simple facts given as pros and cons are these:

    Most believe we haven’t done enough yet in the transfer market to keep up with the other top 4/5 clubs

    There are still 8 days of the transfer window left.

    On top of this you have (as Rocky’s post elegantly describes) the media making money out of our turmoil by fabricating, exaggerating and speculating with scant regard for the truth.

    It will be very interesting to see how the debate develops once the window is closed, but the ‘OK we’re disappointed but we still have to support Arsenal’ view will prevail.

  89. WiganGooner says:


    I’ll make you a deal, just wait until the 1st September, if we haven’t made significant purchases to boost the playing squad then you can come here, call me a mug and retreat into pessimism.

    What is life without hope? Hopeless.


  90. Illybongani says:

    Danny – I have fond memories of Jimmy Rimmer almost single-handedly keeping us up. I’ll always include him in my all time Arsenal XI

  91. TotalArsenal says:

    Announcement on

    ‘From today, the Toronto super-Gooner ‘RockyLives’ is our new PR-Officer’.

    End of announcement.

  92. Illybongani says:

    Wigan – is that what you’re basing your optimism on – new signings??? Oh dear you are going to be so disappointed. And don’t worry, if we don’t sign anyone, I won’t be calling you a mug. My frustration will be pointed in other directions. I’m guessing at the end of the day we both (all) just want the same thing.

  93. Red Arse says:


    I understand your frustrations and accept that you are entitled to an opinion, as we all are.

    Your comment; “The moaning would stop if we went out and bought Cahill, Samba, Parker, Jagielka, Baines (perm any 3 from 5). If we still were struggling at the end of the season, I would say “well we got what we thought we needed and it didn’t work…c’est la vie”

    It’s just that what you are saying (and you are not the only one, of course) translates as “we are falling behind the ‘top 3 money spending clubs’ so let’s spend some money, buy someone – anyone, and if that does not work – well too bad.”

    That’s tens of millions of pounds sterling you are talking about so dismissively, How long do you think Arsenal would survive if you were in charge?

    You are not a bank manager are you? You know – the ones who did to Britain what John Terry does to everyone elses’ wives!

    That’s what frustrates me – it’s the sheer nonsense of the so called ‘solution’. Please be serious!

  94. WiganGooner says:


    If it’s not the on-pitch performances that are the problem then I don’t understand your position.

    If we signed a quality centre-back and midfielder and that enabled us to challenge for the title then what is the problem?


  95. TotalArsenal says:

    Rocky, great post. You know better than anybody else how to put things in perspective for us. You write very clear and to the point and as a result we are all better protected against the constant onslaught of the vicious and mendacious redtops. You are wasted in North-America: we need you here right now, next to Arsene himself.

  96. Danny says:

    Illy – yeah Rimmer was great – lucky we got him in instead Geoff Barnett! I remember Jimmy playing for England against USA – only one half though but he deserved to play for England instead of the usal Clemence/Shilton. I remember geing surprised Jennings replacing Rimmer – I thought that was unfair – probally the same I felt about Stuart Taylor.

  97. Illybongani says:

    Red Arse – so you’re suggesting we don’t buy anyone because we can’t get the quality we need? Pretty much what Arsene is saying / doing. That’s fine then, let’s just crack on as we are. 18 / 19 year old kids. That will do nicely, and think of all that sterling we will save. Genius.

  98. Illybongani says:

    Wigan – that’s exactly what I’m saying, as are many people with far more football knowledge than me. When the likes of George Graham, Lee Dixon, Dave O’Leary say that’s what we need who am I to think otherwise? I would love to win the league with kids. It would be just what the whole of football needs in these times of financial doping. But it just ain’t gonna happen.

  99. WiganGooner says:


    I am totally confused by your argument now. I suggested you be patient until the end of the transfer window and you suggest that signings aren’t the solution. Now you are saying they are?

    Sorry, perhaps I am being a bit thick, so I don’t wish to offend, I just don’t get it.


  100. Illybongani says:

    This is a post written on 16th August last year after the Liverpool way draw…some of you are in serious need of a reality check. I saw my first Arsenal game in 1970 – the year we went on to win the Double. Not a sniff of a title after that until 1989. THAT’s a bloody long time to wait believe me! We were in relegation trouble and bottom of the league 74/75ish. I went to a home game against Stoke with 12,999 other people – bad days indeed.

    So please get a grip. What Arsene has done for this club is nothing short of a miracle. Beautiful football, new stadium, TROPHIES. No one has a divine right to win trophies. We are outmuscled in the spending department by numerous clubs both home and abroad (albeit temporarily until our debt has gone) and we still have 13 years of unbroken Champions League football, something Real Madrid and AC Milan can only dream about.

    He’ll buy who he needs – do you really think he doesn’t know who he needs? Keep the faith Gooners, or would you rather Martin O’Neil takes over….?

    Wigan et al – God knows who it is by, but he sounds really supportive and positive. If only I could be like that…

  101. TotalArsenal says:

    And the Bolero keeps getting louder and louder…

    Nine days to go and the (Gooner) world could look a different place – Wengerbal(l) could be sparkling again and we could be licking our fingers once again on the delicious treats Arsene is putting in front of us. Noboby knows what is going on right now and what will happen next. We can only judge at the end of the TW.

    Football first – Results and cups later. Unless you are a statistician of course…

  102. Illybongani says:

    Wigan – sorry, you’ll have to remind me when I said signings are not the answer.

  103. Red Arse says:


    I haven’t said any such thing. I was high lighting your own perfidious comment, that to appease the ‘moaning’, as you put it, that Wenger should spend tens of millions of pounds and if it did not work then too bad!

    Then you make up something ridiculous, and ask me to defend it.
    Is that the way you think debate works? Seriously?

    I am not a parvenu to debate or blogging, and I do not want to ridicule you, so stop provoking me, for both our sakes.

  104. Illybongani says:

    Danny – I remember Terry Mancini being signed because he “cheered up the dressing room”. The Eboue Prototype in so many ways!

  105. WiganGooner says:

    Illybongani says:
    August 23, 2011 at 12:59 pm
    Wigan – is that what you’re basing your optimism on – new signings??? Oh dear you are going to be so disappointed. And don’t worry, if we don’t sign anyone, I won’t be calling you a mug. My frustration will be pointed in other directions. I’m guessing at the end of the day we both (all) just want the same thing.


    Sorry did I draw the wrong conclusion?


  106. Illybongani says:

    Red Arse – thank you so much for not ridiculing me. Death by Thesaurus is such an ugly way to go.

  107. Illybongani says:

    Wigan – sorry yes. I do think we need them, I just don’t think we’re gonna get them.

  108. Rasp says:

    Guys, I had complemented Illy on his blogging style earlier because he was conforming to the good natured way we like to debate as fellow Arsenal fans, but the discussion is in danger of getting out of hand.

    The daft thing is that I know that both sides agree with elements of the other’s view but everyone is getting entrenched so maybe its time to agree to differ.

    As many have said, we’ll find out soon enough. Only the most deluded would expect us to make a signing before we are guaranteed CL qualification – failure to do so would immediately put a £30m dent in our transfer kitty

  109. Red Arse says:

    That’s more like it Illy, a little irony is always acceptable. 🙂

    I apologise for not thinking you had it in you, altho’ after reading your confused arguments with WG, and others, perhaps that was understandable?

  110. Rasp says:

    Wow TA, I hadn’t expected that before the CL game I must admit. OK, that is really going to polarise views. Tomorrow’s game is now a must win (or at least draw).

    It seems AW’s decision to play Nasri against pool and to include him in the CL squad was a form of hardball that has paid off.

  111. gunnern5 says: has confirmed that Nas5ri has been sold subect to a Man. C medical.

  112. Illybongani says:

    Rasp – I think I said earlier we all just want the same thing. and that’s for Arsenal Football Club to be successful. I’ll be standing in my 125th anniverary kit tomorrow in front of the TV (I can’t sit and watch for more than 5 mins) and cheering the boys on, as I always do (and sometimes on my own at the Emirates). Let’s hope for a good performance and a good result. Amen.

  113. Red Arse says:

    Illy, actually, on reflection, I am not sure whether I am flattered or irritated by being called Thesaurus. Did you mean sore arse? 🙂

  114. Illybongani says:

    Don’t get me started on sore arses – martyr to hemmoroids for years

  115. Iceman says:

    Arsenal can confirm that they have agreed terms for Samir Nasri to move to Manchester City.

    The 24-year-old midfielder, who has spent three years with the Gunners, has been omitted from Arsenal’s squad which flies to Udinese this afternoon and instead will travel north for a medical.

    The move will be subject to Nasri passing a medical and formal registration processes.

    I wonder if certain AKBs on this site are still feeling chirpy? Oh yeah, and now only 7 days to replace. That’s 10 players out – including the two best.

  116. Red Arse says:

    Where is London?

    Where is London’s hat?

    Where is london’s scarf?

    When is he going to eat them? 🙂

  117. Illybongani says:

    Wigan – I think I have to reassess the chances of signings before 30th August now. £80m in the bank to spend. Not even Arsene can ignore that…can he?

  118. Rasp says:

    That’s it, hereafter Red Arse shall be know as TheSoreArse 😆

    Incidentally, in consistency with my long held view, I now believe we need to sign 3 players following Nasri’s departure assuming we get into the CL proper.

  119. Illybongani says:

    Rasp – you must be careful with nicknames. A young lad at my school answered the question in the first year at secondary school “What is a croissant?” with the (quite correct) answer “Is it a kind of flaky pastry?”

    I wonder how old Flakey Pastry is getting on today?

  120. TotalArsenal says:

    Rasp, RA – TheSoreArse! 😛 That will become London’s nickname after the digestion processes of scarf and hat have been fully completed OOUCH OOUCH

    Illy – very funny re Flakey Pastry and it sounds very true. Kids are cruel like that.

    Rasp – yes hard ball by Wenger has payed off. At least we have clarity now, and hopefully we can see a few new signings come in.

  121. neamman says:

    Well said Gunner Pete!!!! Support Arsenal or Sod off!! Love it!!
    My first game was 61 or 62 away at Ipswich. Joe Baker, Eastham, MacLeod, McCullock, Magill.. we won the game but were mid table fodder most of the season. I am just so happy I got to see 7-8 years of WengerBall [1997-2005]. If we dont win a trophy this year what.. no one can win every year. I want Arsenal to be around near or at the top forever and AW is setting us up to do that. IN 3-4 years with new financial rules we will be much stronger comparatively.
    Patience people ..patience!!!

  122. goonermichael says:

    I’ve read a lot of the comments. I don’t think its all rosy.
    Here are my thoughts.

    football journos are genarelly scum that need to be eliminated. 🙂

    I thought the reason that the pitch at Highbury became a parkl was to respect peoples ashes.

    If we don’t buy a couple of players I’m not confident of top 4.

    i hope we win tomorrow.

  123. Red Arse says:

    Yaaay, well said Neamman, 🙂

  124. Jamie says:

    Goonern5, 12:36 – I have plenty to back it up, can’t be bothered to do that for you.

    You just believe what the North Korean PR department at tell you?

    Thats fact is it? not what every other site in the world tells you.

    You just believe what Arsenal tell you even though they lie every summer?

    I am a Wenger fan. I am not a fan of the board. I am allowed to voice that opinion or perhaps North Korean style PR is your kind of thing.

    You are entitled to your opinion, don’t call me a liar or ill informed when i express mine. I’m off for today.

    Come on you gunners.

  125. TotalArsenal says:

    RA, MysticGooner has spoken: ‘When you meet your lovely lady, leave bottle of wine unopened. For once, don’t waste your time but champion brevity: gently squeeze her left buttock as soon as she embraces you. If this leads to a slight moan of appreciation, uncork your bottle with gusto – if, however, the lady gives you an icy look, or worse; leave bottle well corked’.

    Hope this helps Cul Rouge!

  126. Red Arse says:


    you ARE entitled to your opinions, and they are OK. 🙂

  127. Danny says:

    I thought Nasri would play for us against Man.U – it would be in our interests and Man. Shity – well I was completely wrong on that one! So I guess that means if we go through tomorrow we’ll have tons of bread to use. If we don’t go through we’ll have tons of dough but….no one good will be interested in coming to us. Why are we in this situation…..Eboue 110th min.versus Liverpool etc…….

  128. TotalArsenal says:

    I just don’t want you to ‘get out of pocket’ for nothing RA 😛

  129. pat says:

    any one up 4 naming the starting 11 for the game? I just found out that Wilshire was definately out. We will just have to release the Frimpong! Is Gibbs going to be back?

  130. Red Arse says:


    Thank Mystic for me — that is very helpful.

    But tell me, when Mystic says ‘uncork your bottle’ is that a simile?
    I have visions of a popping champagne bottle and all those gushing bubbles ooh err!

    Would that bottle cost more than £3:99? 🙂

  131. Danny says:

    So Man.Shity now have: Kolo Toure, Adebayor, Clichy and Nasri. Plus Stuart Taylor and 4 more ex-Gunners in Platt,Kidd,Marwood and Viera. I heard somewhere that Nasri agent wanted 3 million quid for the deal. The agent is Nasri’s dad……

  132. TotalArsenal says:

    RA, once Mystic has spoken it is final. However, you are, of course, allowed to not subject your imagination to brevity.

  133. Red Arse says:

    Well one thing about the Nasri deal, is that it is going to make me immune to the snide comments about ‘AKB’s’, whatever or whoever the hell they are, because I am going to be ever so slightly snidey myself.

    Did I imagine it or did Arsene say, earlier in the transfer window, ‘Cesc and Nasri are staying – a top club does not sell their best players’.

    Poor old Arsene, if ever there was proof he is not getting the backing from Kroenke he deserves, that seems to be it.

    Not keen on Silent bloody Stan — when is he going to stop being invisible and magically appear and say something to reassure us? Anyone on here ever hear him speak?

  134. SharkeySure says:

    Qulity poist Rocky.

    IlllyB – “Wengerball makes me horny and gives me a semi” – oh dear


  135. TotalArsenal says:

    Pat, according to the Guardian Gibbs and Djourou are out till 10 Sep with hamstring problems. Wilshere out for definite – is news to me. Possible starting 11:

    Jenkinson (if fit?) – Koz (if fit?) – TV – Sagna

    ——————Rosicky(I prefer RvP)——–
    Theo(I prefer The Gerv)————-The Gerv/(Ryo)
    ——————RvP(I prefer Bendtner)——-

    What do you think?

  136. TotalArsenal says:

    RA, Silent Stan takes his time with everything it seems – his anagram is: Snails Tent 😛

  137. London says:

    Ok, ok I’m eating it.

  138. London says:

    Bollacks, the money grabbing little runt.

  139. WiganGooner says:

    I’m glad he’s gone…the speculation now ends and we can focus on the players we have and getting in reinforcements. Arsene himself has called this period draining and that both Cesc and Nasri have been under “permanent transfer negotiations” since the start of the summer.

    Glad to close the door on that to be honest.

    Come on you Gooner’s, lets show those daft italians how Arsenal do football.


  140. TotalArsenal says:

    London, we need video evidence (see attached for example) 😛

  141. evonne says:

    Illy – ‘Death by Thesaurus ‘ ha ha ha 🙂 yeah, he kills his victims with 5 syllabels

  142. Illybongani says:

    Ryo has gone oop North to play for the Reserves so won’t make the trip. I think Traore is fit, so Jenkinson will be on the bench.

    As a side note I think it’s a bit of a shame Jenkinson hasn’t been received as well as you would expect a Gooner to have been received. That’s no fault of his own, purely down to the situation at the club at the moment. Think of the reception Theo got, mainly because he was English, when he first arrived.

  143. pat says:

    Thanks TA – hard to keep up with all the developments!

    bugger – no Gibbs. Hard for me to put RVP in that position only if because of the defensive work he would have to do.

    I would start Theo because his last game vs Udinese he was a threat and could have had a hatrick last time.

    I also have a feeling we will be seeing Song at CB. Will be a huge boost if we can have Koz fit. Not liking Sags out there on the left much either, but not much choice I guess. So Ramsay on the bench then?

  144. Illybongani says:

    Wigan – I make you right. While our negotiators have been pissing about with Nasri, Citeh and all the hangers on they could have been negotiating for players to come in.

  145. pat says:

    You think Traore would get the left side for this one Illy? Seems a big call – he hasn’t had any competitive game time this season?

    BTW it seems that 4-5 goals scored by the reserves have been offside – 1-1 at the moment I think.

  146. Red Arse says:


    Snails Tent — brilliant! 🙂

    Oh and video evidence from London was a given, of course!
    But he can choose the manner of the meal, – hat tartare, or hat fricassed or broiled hat – although ‘hat tatare’ might be most efficacious in curing wind, by blocking all known exits! 🙂

  147. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi Pat, Ramsey could do with a rest and some time for reflection. He seemed lost without his mates Cesc and Jack. Wenger needs to rethink his midfield ‘system’ asap or the Italians will flatten it to a thin-crispy Margherita on Wednesday.

    With RvP being our captain, he would function better in the hole. At the moment, I find him far too isolated upfront. Bendtner and RvP would give the Italians something to think about… and we need that away goal desperately!!

  148. Illybongani says:

    I would go with Traore, one, because he is a left back, and two, because Jenkinson pulled up with cramp at the end on Saturday. I think AW said Djourou is available as well.

  149. TotalArsenal says:

    RA 🙂

  150. evonne says:

    RA – how about hat bolognaise with plenty of pasta?

  151. kelsey says:

    RA said,

    “Did I imagine it or did Arsene say, earlier in the transfer window, ‘Cesc and Nasri are staying – a top club does not sell their best players’.

    Poor old Arsene, if ever there was proof he is not getting the backing from Kroenke he deserves, that seems to be it. ”

    The timing couldn’t be worse 24 hours before our biggest game of the season, at least in a financial aspect.

    I think this might be the last straw for Wenger, i have defended him and critisized him but i honestly believe the selling of both cesc and Samir was taken out of his hands, and is a PR disaster for the club.

  152. Illybongani says:

    SoreArse – I would heartily recommend a Pork Pie hat. Slightly more palatible than your bog standard straw hat

  153. pat says:

    Yeah Sagna was definitely not the same on the left….

    Hopefully DJ can be in – that means we may have one or two more midfield options….

    So annoyed that Koz was injured – He and Verminator were starting to look awesome at the back. Hey we still got the Verminator and freaking hell how we have missed that guy!!!!

  154. Illybongani says:

    “Arsenal have agreed to sign Olney Soccer Club midfielder Gedion Zelalem, following a trial. The 14-year-old will join the Gunners on his 16th birthday, in January 2013”

    Phew – panic over!

  155. Gooner In Exile says:

    Right first off, cracking post Rocky it is beginning to feel like he is this seasons Hodgson.

    On the to’ing and fro’ing today I think we all want the same things, new bodies.

    The side that has repeatedly fired blanks from Spring has been dissassembled so we should assume most critics have had Part A of their wishes. Those fans are probably now criticising AW for losing Cesc and Nasri without recognising that they along with others were part of the much maligned squad that had no “winning” mentality.

    Still calls persist for Scott Parker a player who led his side to relegation and who has one senior trophy to his name (I’ll leave you to wiki it) winner? If you witnessed Frimpong on Saturday you will realise why we don’t need Parker.

    Then we have continued calls for Jagielka, Cahill or Samba…..yet the same fans talk of Arsrne as having no ambition, again if anyone can convince me that any of these players are worth £20m+ and are proven winners feel free to try….you won’t succeed.

    We NEED a attacking defence opener, that is the position we are shortest.

    Talking about shortness Mata was 5ft7 I can hear the quibbles a out another dwarf now if he was signed.

    See this is my problem with most of the negative viewpoints the answers provided are actually not a solution to their original criticism.

  156. Red Arse says:


    It depends on the size of London’s hat. Does he have a 10 gallon size hat, or an itsy bitsy teeny weeny one?

    A little one might be stuck in a bacon sarny with some tomato ketchup, but a 10 gallon job — well — he might want to live inside it for a while to improve the flavour and let it age before being devoured. 🙂

    I am slightly confused by the injured status of players. I thought Gibbs and Djourou were out for about 3 weeks with hamstring problems, and that Ryo was included in the squad who flew out today. But info above seems to contradict this.

    Who is speaking with forked tongue? 🙂

  157. Red Arse says:


    I am almost sure that London said his hat was red and white, and while I am game to try most things myself (which is why I weigh in at a very svelte and fetching 18 stone 6 lbs) 😉 I would draw the line at a red and white pork pie.

    But perhaps London will reveal all. Well – not reveal all exactly, but tell us the size of it – well not the size of IT but ……. oh hell how do I get out of this??

  158. goonermichael says:

    I was going to ask about your titfer London but I see you’e already consumed it. Nasri can go f**k himself.

  159. goonermichael says:

    I don’t think Ryo was registered for this game.

  160. Red Arse says:


    I totally agree with you. One additional thing I believe AW should consider is either bringing Afobe along in his introduction to the first team, or buying a ready made quality forward – immediately.

    RVP is not a CF. Bendy is going if he gets half a chance. Chamakh is utterly useless for anything.

  161. Illybongani says:

    If you witnessed Frimpong on Saturday you will realise why we don’t need Parker.

    GIE….Yeah I witnessed him – around the 75th minute I think he was plugging in his Ipod. He needed someone to put an arm round him after his first yellow and remind him to stay on his feet and wind his neck in until the last minute.

  162. pat says:

    GIE – attacking defence opener, do you have any in mind? The Jadson speculation seems to have gone quiet…

  163. goonermichael says:

    I’m so glad they didn’t let the slag run his contract down.

  164. Illybongani says:

    SoreArse – Control, Alt, Delete!

  165. pat says:

    Capello seems to rate Parker – I guess we can take that how we like it (shrug). I get the for and against for Parker – better than Denilson surely?

  166. Red Arse says:

    Thanks Illy. 🙂

  167. goonermichael says:

    What a massive game for us tomorrow. How we surrendered 3rd is beyond me. I hope getting rid of the wantaways is a new beginning.

  168. RockyLives says:

    Hello All
    First, thanks for those who defended my post from some misinterpretation and misreading (London in particular, but also Gn5, Redders, GiE, Wiggy, Wonderman and apologies to anyone I’ve missed).

    Illy – welcome to AA. You are an entertaining blogger who knows how to stick up for himself without crossing the line into abuse or getting too sensitive when challenged. That’s not meant to sound patronising – I genuinely enjoyed reading your sparring session with some of the regulars.

    Jamie – we all respect your opinions, even if not everyone agrees. One thing I would say abut the Mata situation (and it sort of refers to the subject of my post) is that the whole story about us missing a deadline to get him on the cheap is a complete red herring. The deadline only applied if the transfer was to another Spanish club and had no bearing or influence on any transfer to a foreign club. Not that that stopped the press from reporting it as it if it were evidence of Arsene and Arsenal’s stupidity, of course.

    TA – join the Arsenal PR machine? Flattered though I am, you realise it would mean I could only write posts along the lines of “Lukas Fabianski Praises New Colour Scheme in Colney Changing Rooms…” and “Gunnersaurus Confident Arsenal Can Compete On All Fronts This Year…”

  169. pat says:

    Ryo scored for reserves. Watt got 2. 3-1 vs Wigan final score.

  170. pat says:

    Any team news for Udinese?

  171. goonermichael says:

    I hope miyaichi gets on against the mancs

  172. kelsey says:

    If there is one person I believe connected with Arsenal it is Bob Wilson. He was asked yesterday twice on the radio about Scott Parker and replied that there was no interest whatsoever by our club.

  173. RockyLives says:

    Someone earlier (sorry, can’t remember who because I read through all the comments so quickly) made what I thought was a brilliant point:

    They all slagged off the team that finished last season for being chokers and having no winning mentality. That sort of thing comes from the top… so we have swapped out a large portion of the team including two of the so-called ‘leaders.’ And now we’re criticised for doing that…. You can’t win.

  174. Danny says:

    Just read that Wilshere is out for 2 months with his ankle injury…….

  175. RockyLives says:

    Good point about Willow. He’s still very involved with the club and you can place a lot of store in what he says.

    I have no doubt we’ll spend quite a lot of money before the TW closes. The only problem is, as others have pointed out, nothing’s going to move until we know whether or not we’re in the CL.

    But I feel curiously optimistic. I expect a draw or a 2-1 defeat at Udinese, followed by a battling draw at Old Toilet, followed by some inspiring signings.

  176. goonermichael says:

    Rocky As I said I hope it’s a new beginning.

  177. RockyLives says:

    Shit. That’s bad news – it’s starting to sound like a Vermaelen situation. JW was undoubtedly one of the reasons why AW felt he could let Cesc go. In these circumstances midfield reinforcements are even more imperative.

  178. goonermichael says:

    Where did you read that Danny? He was training last week.

  179. TotalArsenal says:

    G< the phoenix from the flame…..

    Agree with you fully on your sentiments re Nasri.

  180. kelsey says:…injury?cc=5739


  181. goonermichael says:

    I deleted them fro NN ages ago. Not sure how reliable they are.

  182. goonermichael says:

    I’ve read it and it looks like total bollocks. Where do they get “some reports” from?

  183. London says:

    We have just entered into what I believe will be one of the most interesting periods in the club’s recent history.

    Wenger pretty much has a blank canvas to work with; he can shape the team how he wants be it big and powerful alla Vieira/Petit or he can replicate the more skilful, low centre of gravity approach of recent past.

    One thing is for sure Wenger will now earn his money, the financial heavy weights have brought all the midfielders they need, only the scraps are left and it is right here that he is capable of operating better than any other in the business.

    Good luck Arsene you have this gooner’s full support.

  184. Illybongani says:

    about as reliable as Sportsvibe and the Sunday Sport

  185. TotalArsenal says:

    London, well said!

  186. WiganGooner says:


    I’m not convinced by that article, sounds like scaremongering to me by ESPN.

    Jack trained thurs, fri, sat and monday and I didn’t hear that he wasn’t at training today.

    Let’s be honest, TV’s injury was an odd one, it’s very unlikely that Jack has the same issue and he certainly won’t suffer from the same issues during diagnosis as Arsenal know what to look for.


  187. Illybongani says:

    Some things in life are bad
    They can really make you mad
    Other things just make you swear and curse
    When you’re chewing on life’s gristle
    Don’t grumble, give a whistle
    And this’ll help things turn out for the best

    Altogether now!

    It could be worse – Abramovich could have bought the Spuds

  188. London says:

    Wenger said in a TV intereview that JW had a set back.

  189. RockyLives says:

    “the financial heavy weights have brought all the midfielders they need, only the scraps are left and it is right here that he is capable of oppereating better than any other in the business.”

    Brilliant comment.

    In many ways it’s a bit like the situation he found himself in when he arrived at Arsenal: a nucleus of very good players plus a lot of mediocre ones. Look how quickly he turned that round with a couple of astute purchases (who were NOT big name stars at the time).

    Come on Arsene! I so want you to shove it up the critics this year.

  190. London says:


    Nice one Illy, although I got a shiver down my back when I first thought of it.

  191. RockyLives says:

    Is Campbell eligible to play tomorrow/Sunday?

  192. Illybongani says:

    Rocky – I read somewhere he’s still waiting for a work permit. But I also read he qualifies because of some tenuous family link. Yer pays yer money…

  193. RockyLives says:

    It would be nice to see him get a run out. If I continue the analogy of this period being similar to AW’s first year at Arsenal, maybe Campbell could be this year’s Anelka.

  194. goonermichael says:

    I agree London. Good comment. I’m personally glad that cesc and nasri are gone. Great players but they don’t want to play for us so sod them.

  195. Rasp says:

    Hi Rocky, thanks for another classic offering – hope the move is going smoothly.

    How soon after the game tomorrow do you expect there to be some activity through the in door?

    I have high hopes fopr Campbell but don’t expect to see him in anything other than the CC at first, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Ox in the prmiership within the month.

  196. Herb'sArmy says:

    Exciting time to be a Gooner!
    Afternoon all.
    Remember the mess we were in when George Graham was sacked and Stewart Houston had to take charge? I’d rather be where we are now than be in that situation again.
    What Arsenal and Arsene Wenger need now is all our resounding support. A siege mentality. Arsene Wenger, with no previous connection to the club has never treated us the way George Graham did, and he was part of the 1970-71 ‘Double’ winning side.

  197. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Considering Kroenke`s family ties with Wallmart, it`s hardly surprising of citeh`s constant shopping at ASDA (Arsenal Sell Dividand`s Arrive)

  198. Big Raddy says:

    RL. Another fine thought provoking post. As an ex-pat I don’t get to read the tabloids and as such don’t get tied into the drivel they write.

    Those that call for AW’s head should look at the managerial position at Chelsea. Is that any way to run a club?? Is their way the answer? Buy huge name players, try to play attractive football, come second, then sacked a great manager like Ancelotti.

    Is this what we want for the Arsenal?

  199. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    “And it`s Asda supermarket……Asda supermarket fc……were by far the greatest supermarket…..the world has ever seen” 🙂

  200. RockyLives says:

    Thanks Rasp and BR

    And well said Herb

    GLIC – and so far you wouldn’t exactly say that Citeh have done well out of any of their ASDA “bargains”, would you?

    Nasri is a greedy git and, much as I would rather he stayed, it’s inevitable he would be off for the dosh. However, I don’t expect this to be a good move for him. It could turn out to be a Hleb-to-Barca move. Give it a couple of years and he’ll be giving interviews about how he should never have left Arsenal.

  201. WiganGooner says:

    Since we are now irrevocably short in midfield…I wonder whether we have a release clause in Denilson’s loan contract?



  202. RockyLives says:

    Behave Wiggy! 🙂

  203. Red Arse says:

    Apparently, !!! Allegedly, !!!! etc, etc, caveats galore —– Nasti’s weekly wage is £220,000 = £11.5m per annum.

    For a 4 year contract they are paying out the best part of £46m + the capital transfer of £24m = £70m over a 4 year period, on one player!

    Is Nasri worth £70m over 4 years?

    Seriously, you guys who keep warbling on about the need for us to spend to keep up with Citeh, the Chavs and Manure need to look at the sums involved.

    Ludicrous, absolutely ludicrous!

  204. RockyLives says:

    Strewth Redders
    Not even Chavski can keep up with that kind of spending: 70m squids for an impact sub – wow!

  205. oz gunner says:

    @ Wigan

    i think i’d off myself if that happened haha

    @ Rocky

    usual great post, caused quite the stir again. The media is a joke, ive given up on every site bar this one. So if theres any signings please someone mention it otherwise i won’t know come game time haha

  206. Herb'sArmy says:

    Hi RA,
    Nasri is a complete mercenary, and we are better than that.
    Your 09:10 amused me, though I agree with the sentiments.

  207. RockyLives says:

    30k fine for the Newcastle scrap.
    That’s Ok – we’ll have saved that much on Nasri’s wages by Friday.

  208. oz gunner says:

    @ RA

    a date huh, alot of things to think about, for instance:

    ‘You’re sitting there, you’re wondering do I have food on my face, am I eating, am I talking too much, are they talking enough, am I interested I’m not really interested, should I play like I’m interested but I’m not that interested but I think she might be interested but do I want to be interested but now she’s not interested? So all of the sudden I’m getting, I’m starting to get interested… And when am I supposed to kiss her? Do I have to wait for the door cause then it’s awkward, it’s like well goodnight. Do you do like that ass-out hug? Where you like, you hug each other like this and your ass sticks out cause you’re trying not to get too close or do you just go right in and kiss them on the lips or don’t kiss them at all? It’s very difficult trying to read the situation. And all the while you’re just really wondering are we gonna get hopped up enough to make some bad decisions? Perhaps play a little game called “just the tip”. Just for a second, just to see how it feels. Or, ouch, ouch you’re on my hair.’

  209. oz gunner says:

    @ London

    good luck with the eating

    i for one am shocked also. I seriously thought after the cesc transfer that it would be announced that nasri had signed on. At the very least for another year allowing him to leave next season. Probably the stupidest move of his career tbh, just ask bellamy,RSC,SWP, ade, and co what its like playing at man city.

    The next few days are going to be a whirl wind indeed, udinese will be a tight one but im quietly confident of a win over manure. They are always tight games, and with there backline/goalkeeping struggles at the present i feel RVP will take full advantage!

  210. Red Arse says:

    Hi Herb,

    I have my weak moments!! 🙂

    Incidentally, talking about Nasri’s transfer, no wonder Citeh have ‘negotiated’ a £400m ‘sponsorship’ with their ‘parent state’, 🙂 ahead of the UEFA FFP rules coming in next year.

    With the number of costly players and equally costly salaries Citeh are paying out, they won’t want a Libyan type ‘rebellion’ in good old Quatar or Dubai or will they?

    Imagine what would happen to Citeh if such a thing happened!

    like I am worried!! 🙂

  211. RockyLives says:

    and 😀 for your 5.45pm – where’s that from?

  212. RockyLives says:

    Good thought – isn’t it time for one of those Arab Spring uprisings in Dubai?
    And if there is one, and it gets brutally put down… where does that leave Citeh and their “benefactors.”

  213. Herb'sArmy says:

    If I told you why it amused me RA, it would open up a viper’s nest, so I best not say.

  214. oz gunner says:

    @ Rocky

    Wedding crashers. perfect quote for dating i think.

  215. Red Arse says:


    I have only stopped laughing at your summation of a date. 🙂

    It’s nearly put me off as that sounds so tricky, and I don’t want to risk wasting the £3:99 I paid for a good bottle of champagne on a maybe! 🙂

    I just fell in love with my date, at first sight, after I had an intimate moment with her hairy chin and little black moustache during my dental check up.

    I haven’t asked her yet, of course, but she won’t be able to resist someone who is slightly heavier than her at 18 stone 6 lbs!!

    What do you think? 🙂

  216. Red Arse says:

    Ooh err, Herb, best not to say then, or you may get me in trouble! 🙂

  217. Herb'sArmy says:

    Not you RA, me. It touched on something that I mentioned and got hammered for.

  218. Gooner in Exile says:

    Frimpong is a LEGEND!

    His twitter today:

    15:11 “Money is the Roots of All Evil”

    Quoting Jack Wilsheres tweet at the same time:

    “@JackWilshere: Good luck to my friend @nanas08 learnt a lot from him. World class player! Will be missed!” he responded “Pfffffff common Jack”

    PiersMorgan suggested Manny should tell his mate Samir Nasri that Money is the Roots of All Evil

    To which Manny said “I might have”

    Something tells me Mr Nasri might not have been popular with young Frimpong, and it also tells me that this lad has Arsenal in his heart….got to love him!

    Also OptaJoe had this stat:
    Arsenal Win Percentages:
    49% with Nasri
    62% without

  219. oz gunner says:

    @ RA

    im no psychic like TA but i’ve asked my eight ball the question and it says “all signs point to yes” so i think its love! (i also asked it if arsenal will make the signings we need and it said “ask me later”)

    Another option is to chug that bottle before the date and see how attractive she is then. If the beard remains your in trouble!

  220. Big Raddy says:

    Tevez, Aguero, Dzeko, Adebayor, Santa Cruz, Bellamy, Jo,

    All MC current CF’s. Over €180m of wasted talent. That is before we go to the wings!!

    Wright Phillips, Silva, Johnson, Milner, Balotelli

    Jealous moi?

  221. oz gunner says:

    @ GiE

    interesting stats there. Frimpong is a star, im hoping he headbutts nasri while he’s cleaning out his locker

  222. Red Arse says:

    Herb, If you got hammered then sssshhhh don’t let on — I seem to have got way with it, whatever it was. 🙂

    Anyway, water under the bridge, my friend, you have been a breath of fresh air and long may that continue! 🙂

    Rocky, you can probably tell Oz and before him TA and Mystic Gooner have been giving me dating advice!! 🙂

  223. Big Raddy says:

    Oz 🙂

  224. Gooner in Exile says:

    RA for what its worth my top dating tip.

    Its all bout body language mirroring:

    First you replicate their motions, i.e. at a bar of they lean on it, you lean on it, if they stand straight you stand straight.

    At dinner table if they lean in, you lean in and vice versa,

    Keep this going for long enough and their mind is tricked into thinking you have something in common. You can then start leading the mirroring so they should follow you if you lean back.

    Obviously if the date isn’t going well you should be able to do the opposite of them and you should then make sure she realises you have nothing in common and clears off sharpish so you can get the good wine out and relax

  225. Red Arse says:


    You are a man of inspirational advice, and you clearly have a delicate sensitivity in these matters. But I am quite happy with her mustache, it’s the weight thing that worries me.

    Trying to get all the tricky bits into alignment can be daunting when you are pushing 48 stone between you. Bit like two beachballs mating, I suppose – no one can see what’s going on! 🙂

  226. Gooner in Exile says:

    Someone just made a good comment on Twitter about the unity that appears to be amongst our Youth and Reserves in love for the club and against the constant battering. Seems Aneke is having a good season so far and Watt scored two today.

    Will have to watch on ArsenalPlayer.

  227. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Star Man Rocky. Great read thank you.
    Wow, everyone appears in the happy camp. What to say? There were too many rumours of unrest in the dressing room last season for there not to be any truth. My money says the problem has just flown the nest.

  228. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Right then lads, what’s our budget for the next week? I’m raring to go and ready to play.

  229. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Lets just put to bed,you doubters of Samir`s integrity and commitment, it was never about the money! 🙂

  230. oz gunner says:

    @ RA

    haha classic response

    when dating i was always worried about not having those awkward silences and keeping the conversation flowing. The problem was i was thinking of what to say next without taking in what they had said, so we could of been talking for 3 hours yet i couldn’t tell you anything more than her name.

  231. MickyDidIt89 says:

    You have a very worrying penchant for the hirsute. Frankly, I find your tendency rather disturbing. Is it a childhood thing? Do the names Romulus and Remus sound alarm bells?

  232. oz gunner says:

    @ Micky

    i’m going to go with an even 50 million

    What does that buy you?

    @ GiE

    i’m glad its coming through the scout then because its been something that has seriously lacked in recent seasons. Unity and passion

  233. GunnerPete says:

    Thank you ,well some of you for your positive replies to my anylsis earlier. Yes 62 years since my first visit to Highbury aged seven. My dad was a Chelski fan and begged his sons all four to support the Blues….I can thank a very old man signed to keep us up (we were 4th from bottom at the time) he scored the winner 1-0, and we stayed up…just….the man was Tommy Lawton who my dad had rubbished all the way to the ground.

    As for the few that hated my logic ie; Iceman, & Illibongan ..(great name mate), I would only say that
    If you had watched our beloved team win acup final and then go 18 years as one of the worst teams in the UK, you may..well probably not, see through the sad jaundiced eyes that you have. Your remarks were interesting

    “Gunnerpete, will be interested to read your comments if we lose to Udinese and United. Will you still be as stalwart or will you open your eyes and realise that we are a struggling club who have no idea what direction they are going in” Well I can answer that Immediately…We will struggle like mad to survive in Italy…we WILL lose to United, but unlike you I will still adore my team .Probably even more if they fight and show pride, because I can see that with half a team (not due to Arsene not buying more but entirely down to injuries and suspensions) they have done better than to teams you admire so much. As I said before no team ever have played so many matches with so many top players out…remember Chelski without just one last year (Lampard) they fell apart as did Manure without Shrek!

    My whole point of being a true Gunner is…we were born to suffer. Arsenal Football Club have never done anything easy. When we won trophies nearly every time we turned a canter into a near calamity. Our useless board always sold top players as soon as we were top of the pile. The only reason Manure & Liverpool have so many titles is entirely down to their boards phylosophy of when you are champs you add stars not sell them. It has succeeded for 20 yaers each and now the Pool are buying again, the whole circle has begun again.

    Now I want our FA to say ‘ we are now introducing two titles…one for the teams who have massive debts but keep spending obscene amounts annually and one for the clubs (like us) who buy but stay withing the income generated by the club’ ….a fair competition would be nice!

    Without overdoing what I said previously…if you cant be a true Gunner…dont be whining to us real Gunners because its degrading.

  234. harry671 says:

    Great article rocky, a style of your own. When I start readaing an article I just know when its one of yours……
    @Gie frimpers is truly a proper gooner, he loves this club, with jack they will rip this league up in the next few years. Alex song has fight on his hands.
    Happy with squad tomorrow, with wenger in dugout as well, just need all to perform ie aa and tw………

  235. Big Raddy says:

    Oz. My fear is that we will pay the transfer fee but not the wages, so the clubs agree the sale but the agent and player won’t.

    And we cannot break to wage structure because of the knock on effect to the top players at the club. e.g Tony Adams had a clause in his contract that he would be top paid player at Arsenal, therefore whenever we signed someone on big money his wages shifted accordingly. I am sure a similar situation will exist with RvP, AA etc

  236. Herb'sArmy says:

    I won’t say RA, I tried to give you a clue, but you didn’t pick up on it.
    As amused as I was, it was also a source of irritation. No blame towards yourself though.

  237. Big Raddy says:

    GunnerPete: “My whole point of being a true Gunner is…we were born to suffer” Just brilliant ……

  238. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Whooopee, fifty big ones. Much more than I hoped for. For me the lions share goes on the advanced midfielder as he will be the heartbeat of the team without which we can no longer play 4-3-3. So I’ll lump 25-30 right there. Frankly I’d then lob the rest at tring to prise Vertonghen away as he can do everything we need defensively. Oh, sorry, the AM would be Fernando Bellushi. That’s “super” quality for you.
    I love this game.

  239. Herb'sArmy says:

    Apparently, Eto’o is going to Russia on wages of £340k a week.

  240. Big Raddy says:

    Herb. Complete and utter madness. Though saying they will pay him and him actually receiving the wonga are two totally different things 🙂

  241. Big Raddy says:


  242. MickyDidIt89 says:

    BR Hi,
    We don’t have a wage structure set in stone. Henry got £200k/week in his last season. Its what we pay the likes of Walcott that is nuts.
    If true, then that’s actually quite funny.

  243. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Sorry Herb with a b.

  244. MickyDidIt89 says:

    We really can do a whole lot more of this over the next week.

  245. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    I don`t know about 2 leagues, One will do but with point reductions for those refusing to obey FFP!, if you can`t hurt them in their pockets!

  246. Big Raddy says:

    Micky. Drogba?

    Gotta cook. (a quick and easy chicken provencal with rice and mange tout)

    Back later

  247. Herb'sArmy says:

    Hi Micky,
    heard it on TalkSport, don’t know how reliable they are.
    Seems we have a raft of Russian Oligarch’s flexing their financial muscle. World recession?

  248. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Moules Mariniere Cornish style here. Picked off the beach today. Dry cider, apple brandy, cider apples, leeks and cream.

  249. Red Arse says:


    re your 6:39.

    I don’t care if you do have a beard and your names are Romulus, Remus and Sherbert Drops, you cannot have a date with me! 🙂

  250. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Oh bollocks!

  251. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Sherbert Drops? I’m probably being my usual slow self but eh.

  252. Red Arse says:


    Anzhi, (who they?) the club Etoo is going to, is now owned by one of the wealthiest Russkie oligarchs, and others are moving into Russian footie ahead of the World Cup.

    There will be footie problems in the future when they try to emulate Abramovich.

    Uzie …….. oh, Uzie ……… over here —– I am warming to you ……. and your huge check book!!! Ohh, Mr Uzmanove…….Uziee ………

  253. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Just a thought 💡 why doesn`t the Premier League bring out some sort of FFP?
    If citeh and chavs don`t like it, they can always form their own 2 team league,a bit like the SPL

  254. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Makes me think how much Balotelli loves life in Manchester! No idea where this Russian club are, but life is pretty grim in the sticks over there.

  255. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Just done the google thang and they play in Makhachkala, capital of the Republic of Dagestan. The players live and train near Moscow and fly 1,250 miles for the home games (for security reasons!!!).

  256. TotalArsenal says:

    ‘Fear the time when Manself will not suffer and die for a concept, for this one quality is the foundation of Manself, and this one quality is man, distinctive in the universe’

    J. Steinbeck The Grapes of Wrath

    Long live Wengerball (and not just for Arsenal football club)

  257. RockyLives says:

    Thanks Micky and Harry
    GunnerPete – love your perspective on things. I didn’t start supporting until 1970, so I got lucky pretty quickly with the following year’s Double. Seen some grim times though.

    Knowing your accountancy tendencies I thought you might like this Andy Warhol quote about dating: “Employees make the best dates. You don’t have to pick them up and they’re always tax-deductible.”

  258. Herb'sArmy says:

    Although Micky, I’ve met a few Africans who have nothing but good things to say about Russia. Obviously they don’t move in the same prestigious circles as the esteemed Mr Eto’o.
    Did you see Balotelli with his “I love Mcr” T-shirt? You couldn’t make it up!

  259. goonermichael says:

    Manager Arsene Wenger says Wilshere’s right foot is “in a boot again, so that means he will at least be out for two or three weeks.”

    We beter buy someone.

  260. goonermichael says:


  261. MickyDidIt89 says:


  262. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Not only must, but this is no time for the future. These must be automatic first team starters.

  263. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Right, mouths to feed.

  264. London says:


    Re your 5.39, if I were you I would keep that and re post it whenever someone comes on here complaining about Wenger and how his lack of spending has caused us to fall behind the calibre of squad that City have complied.

    In other words you will probably have use for that one every day.

    Good comment by the way, who would have ever thought that Chelsea and manu could have been blown out of the water, well maybe manu but I never expected the Chavs to have to go shopping for anything less than the absolute best.

  265. harry says:


    Fabregas and Nasri’s departures have coincided with the start of Arsenal’s campaign but Wenger believes that the rest of his squad will rise above recent events to get the right result in Italy.

    “There is always a concern [that players can be affected] but it is not an excuse,” said the manager.

    “You are always concerned about the consequences it can have on the team. It can have a positive consequence as well – if you are strong mentally it can increase the solidarity, knowing you have to fight more.

    “That is ideally what you want from mentally strong players.”

    Now call me picky, Mr Wenger, wasnt it you who said when we throw away the chance of silverware last season, something on the lines of

    “We are not mentality strong enough as we lack that bit of experience and maturity”……..

    Anyway, thats a side issue, i will judge you and the board on the 1st sept, fail to bring anyone in and a case of Gross Negligence will be filed against someone……….

  266. goonermichael says:

    I’m off home
    See you all later. Very enjoyable today, I’m feeling positive again.

    Up and down like a whores nightgown I am.

  267. RockyLives says:

    See you GM

    Despite our so-called crisis, many of the critics seem to have gone to ground.

    I get the feeling that many of them are actually hoping we lose tomorrow night so they can plaster their “told you so’s” all over the blog world.

  268. harry says:

    @London@Red Arse 5.39pm………….

    It is crazy money and totally out of sync with reality, whereby in a way I dont blame the players, if someone offers you the money you take it (to a point) but what the assembled Football Authorities are not grasping, is that this is a cancer within football which WILL kill it as we know it.

    I am not sure over how long, but it is not sustainable even with the Oligarch’s throwing their money about……

    Nasri has for me ruin a chance to be a truly world class player, he will spend 40% of his time on the bench………

  269. harry says:

    @Rocky, it is sad but true I have heard plastic gooners saying they hope we go out so wenger gets sacked……..

    I think we will win and go through and wenger will buy 3 players before the deadline……..

  270. RockyLives says:

    “I think we will win and go through and wenger will buy 3 players before the deadline……..”

    Me too! Bring it on.

  271. Herb'sArmy says:

    Great post Rocky.
    Anyone who wants anything other than an Arsenal win tomorrow night cannot seriously consider themselves true red-blooded Gooners.

  272. TotalArsenal says:

    Harry, you’re the man. Love your comments @ 8.08 and 8.10 🙂

  273. gunnern5 says:

    I haven’t read all of the posts today so this may be redundant news.

    UEFA have agreed to suspend AW’s 2 match touchline ban until Arsenal have time to appeal. Therefore he will be behind the bench tomorrow.

    Following the past few days it’s nice to get some good news.

  274. chas says:

    Great post, Rocky.

    I saw Na$ri spelt thus earlier. Highly appropriate, I think.
    Bye bye, thanks for your loyal and lion-hearted service.

  275. harry says:

    Here is a cracker for you guys, you may disagree but……..

    Barca Squad Champions league March 2011 v
    Udinese Squad August 2011

    Szczesny = Szczesny
    Sagna = Sagna
    Clichy = Traore
    Kozzer = Vermaelen
    Djourou = Djourou
    Diaby = Song
    Wilshere = Ramsey
    Fabregas = Rosicky
    Na$ri = Gervinho
    Rosicky = Walcott
    Van Persie = Van Persie

    Almunia = Fabianski
    Denilson = Frimpong
    Squillaci = Miquel
    Arshavin = Arshavin
    Eboue = Jenkinson
    Chamakh = Chamakh
    Bendtner = AOC

    Obviously I don’t know the exact line up for tomorrow, but seeing how wenger has lined them up so far, it’s a fair reflection and probably what he will go with.

    As I see it, the defence now is slightly better with Thomas in. +1 for Aug squad

    The midfield is obviously weaker without Cesc, although it can be argued with Cesc not been fully fit for the barca game, this midfield is at least equal. But lets say +1 for Mar squad. If Jack had made it, then I would have said this midfield was definitely equal……

    The front three, there is little to choose.

    The bench for me is better, so +1 for August team……

    So for all the pessimists etc, the squad going to Udinese is better than what we sent to the Nou Camp…………!! who would have figured that eh??????????

  276. RockyLives says:

    Love it 🙂
    Perspective is everything.
    Many people can’t get any perspective because they are blinded by the glare of all the media negativity.

  277. London says:

    Clever stuff Harry.

  278. RockyLives says:

    Evening Chas
    It’s Na$ri for ever more…

  279. Evening all, back from my Scandinavian sojourn and a typically clever Rocky post greets me.
    I have just one question, is now too early to write off a season ?

    I have already resigned myself to Europa football, if not this season maybe next as it’s clear we have to downgrade our expectations. Looking on the bright side Channel 5 will show all our games, free to air. 🙂

    At least my second team, the Indian Cricket side, have been cheering me up lately…no, wait.

  280. London says:

    I wonder if Arsene will use Micky’s suggestion of playing “The Wall” that’s both Song and Frimpong with Rambo ahead?

    I like the idea of completely absolving Ramsey from all defensive duty……just consentrate on linking the attack Aron.

    This is something he usually does when the more defensive Wilshere is in the team.

  281. Rasp says:

    It never raiN$ but it Na$ri

    Hope he joins H£eb in the list of those who left because they overrated themselves and undervalued Arsenal

  282. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Briefly back,
    Evening all, and loving the $ in Na$ri.
    Regarding my Wall Theory. Its not nearly as defensive as some may think. If between them they can coordinate their “thrusting” it could be very effective. Both are very distructive on the attack. During buttock clenching periods of play, yes The Wall could be erected and very effective it would be.

  283. RockyLives says:

    “buttock clenching” “erected”…
    I think you’d better have a lie down.

  284. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Just did Rocky and that is the result!

  285. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Here’s my line up:
    ….Back 5
    ..Song Frimpong

  286. Rasp says:

    Micky, you are a plagiarist, I believe I was the first to extol the virtues of the Pong/Song wall – but hey ho, you can have the limelight 😕

  287. MickyDidIt89 says:

    As site Commander, I’m sure there are buttons you can push there at Mission Control to establish the Truth.

  288. MickyDidIt89 says:

    In fact by pushing the “hunt song/tingtong” button you will see that I’m the wizard.

  289. harry says:

    Micky, Nic seemingly is not in the sqaud see above………

  290. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Oh and I guess your line up included RvP in the three and a “hungry to prove a point at CF” Nic. You little snake 🙂

  291. Rasp says:

    😆 Micky

    I’m actually getting quite worried by the unerring accuracy of my predictions ……. 11:00 am last saturday….. ” Frimpong will take over from Eboue as the new crowd favourite but is going to get a red today I fear” the last part certainly didn’t take a crystal ball to predict – but sadly our training staff were unable to impress on the Pong that he’d need to exercise control 😦

  292. barumgooner says:

    Evening guys. Still not convinced with AA. Chamakh has to be in front of Nik doesn’t he ?

    back 5
    pingpong song
    TR, RVP, gerv

    for me.

  293. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Strewth Rasp,
    You are putting up a fight just as I’m about to wave a white hanky with Harry’s shattering news that Nic is not even on the plane.
    Must go now. Nite all.

  294. Rasp says:

    I fear Nik will be the next to be announced as gone Micky, I do believe that unlike many others he will go on to have a successful career – but no hard feelings from me, he didn’t get enough pitch time and when he did he was put out wide most of the time.

  295. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Not really here as work to finish but:
    Trouble with AA is that he appears lazy and utterly useless which I tend to agree with. Problem is that his assists stats are very impressive.
    On the other hand, Chamakh appears lazy and utterly useless and his stats are awful 🙂

  296. MickyDidIt89 says:

    100% agree with all of that.
    Oh, and if YOU say that he’ll be next out, then that’s law as far as I’m concerned 🙂

  297. andy says:

    Haha Micky. I actually like Chamakh, I think he started his Arsenal days well and then got cast aside as soon as the golden boy returned, it’s gota dent the confidence a little dont you think. I think when he is in the right frame of mind he works quite hard for the team aswell, just needs a few goals under his belt. I predict a Chammy hat-trick tomorrow !!

  298. andy says:

    Oops. Andy = Barum

  299. MickyDidIt89 says:

    I’ll take all the optimism I can get. Who said they reckoned Verm would get five. Now that I really liked.

  300. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Right, I going to leave you with one final thought for the night

  301. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    The hemorrhaging must stop now 👿

  302. Gooner In Exile says:

    The fans that asked for mass change have certainly got it.

    I am not at all worried about what this season will bring, a top 4 finish…yes. A cup run…possibly.

    A reinvigorated, rejuvenated and hungry squad absolutely.

    Cesc went home, Nasri chased the pound. Denilson, NikB and Eboue will not be missed.

    I think only one side in the PL could stomach the losses we have endured in the opening weeks and as RA points out they have just invested £70m over four years on a squad player.

    Now let’s get something straight about our new skipper… he is not and never will be Denis Bergkamp or Cesc Fabregas so he cannot play in the hole imho. I also don’t think he has the legs for it.

    Several times on Saturday he could have closed down Carragher which would have encouraged Ramsey, Theo and Arsh to do the same, he didn’t. But he is a goalscorer and we need to get him better supply.

    The only captain on the pitch on Saturday was Vermaelen led by example and his enthusiasm for the fight rubbed off on Jenkinson and Miquel alongside him. But I’m happy for him to continue to do that as vice skipper.

    For me I’m going for the following tomorrow, assuming Kos is fit


  303. gnarleygeorge9 says:


    Thats not too bad a starting 11, but they will all need to be up for it to get the result. Frimpong is skyrocketing up IMO, he just doesn’t seem to be phased by anything/anyone. I like him 🙂

  304. pat says:

    agree with you GIE regarding RVP – striker yes, but not an attacking midfielder. Does not have the defensive / tackling ability…

    The only team diff is that I would have Walcott in there – but maybe could use him off the bench… I think he is better than Arshavin defensively.

  305. pat says:

    Udinese have to score so having Walcott is going to cause them to have some second thoughts about that – will be good on the counter.

  306. pat says:

    Liking the Song Frimpong combo though!

  307. oz gunner says:

    @ Harry

    great team comparison

    @ Pat

    i agree with playing walcott. There were two many times last season when we had the lead yet brought on a defender to ‘sure things up’ (e.g eboue, and it didnt work…we conceded). If we had of brought on walcott then they can’t press as high and if they do we will be lethal on the counter. Udinese need to score, and if its deadlocked at 0-0 come half time they will be very nervy and will give it everything. I’d chuck on walcott at 60mins and watch him create havoc. We have to get the ball to RVP, its as simple as that. He’s not getting enough supply.

    Shocking news in regards to Wilshere. Even though we have a supposed top of the line medical team i think its sh*t! Some players have missed large periods for minor injuries (e.g whenever someone gets a hamstring injury it always seems to be a 6 week injury). Its either that or players are just soft as mud. In Australian rules football you put your head over the ball and someone hits you and your brain falls out…they shove it back in sew it up and back out there you go. Yet gibbs misses with hang-nails.

    @ Rocky

    great line at 9.48
    ‘i think you better have a lie down’ haha

  308. oz gunner says:

    @ micky

    good call on vertoghen (sp?), and a AM is a must!

    In terms of strikers id put in sneaky bids for forlan or drogba. I don’t think drogba has lost it, i just think hes been pushed out and not given the chances torres has.

    Or we could get tougher and buy kevin davies haha, how that bloke doesn’t get sent off every game is beyond me. Watching him throw his weight around against man city just proves that determination and playing to your strengths can get you somewhere, because god (dennis) knows he doesnt have much else.

  309. RockyLives says:

    Morning (?) Oz
    You (and Pat) are right: the amount of times last season we took off Walcott and put on Eboue or the Squid to “protect our lead” and immediately invited the oppos to attack us (with inevitable results). It used to do my head in. Keep Theo on and they can’t commit everyone to attack.

  310. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Lets get another thing straight, neither Rambo or anyone else on the playing staff is anything like good enough to take the AM role.
    I happen to agree about keeping RvP in the goal scoring zone, however with either Rosicky or Rambo behind I don’t think they’ll set him up with a single good chance.

  311. MickyDidIt89 says:

    On a brighter note, I can’t wait for tonight’s game. If we do go with the Song Frimpong combo, I am sure we will get the result we need.

  312. MickyDidIt89 says:

    On a darker note, if we go out tonight, do we have to play in the Europa league of ten thousand games?

  313. Gooner In Exile says:

    Micky I actually think Rosicky will play he can pick passes but can only last 60mins and I thought had looked a better player at the moment than Ramsey at times. But him and Arsh starting is a little lightweight.

    On Ramsey everytime I have seen him since returning the leg break does not seem to have phased him. It was similar with Eduardo following his return. But the next season he seemed to think a lot more about it let’s hope the same isn’t true of Rambo.

  314. London says:


    Do you hang upside down in a dark cupboard waiting for the stroke of midnight to come down are write you best comment of the day, I say this becasue I have noticed it has happened on quite a few occasions in recent past and your 12:07 is no exception, I agree with every word and that should be the team tonight for the reasons you have stated.

  315. Gooner In Exile says:

    Yes we would Micky but that would be ok, more chance of winning that 😀

  316. Gooner In Exile says:

    Thanks London….No hanging upside down 😀 tend to have a couple of hours away from the blog maybe it gives me time to form a more rounded view without reacting to any comments on the timeline.

  317. evonne says:

    Morning, when is Alex Ox going to start playing? After all, he is the Nasri replacement, so let’s hope we will see him tonight

  318. Rasp says:

    Morning all, the news on Jack’s injury is worrying – shades of Vermaelen last season I fear. One thing is for sure, we shouldn’t rush him back.

    My priorities for new players have been shuffled as a result and are now:

    1. Attacking creative midfielder
    2. Clinical striker
    3. Defender/CH

  319. kelsey says:

    morning to you and everyone else.
    I was quite amused about your “chat up line” as i had/have a rather different approach 😉

    AS to tonight the biggest miss will be creativity in midfield so Rosicky and even arshavin to an extent need the games of their lives as does Song and or Frimpong.

    A 2-1 defeat would see us through.We just have to score,we are not a mancini or mourinho side that can set their stall out from the first minute to defend.

  320. WiganGooner says:

    Morning all,

    New post will be up at 9:30 as scheduled, it is a match preview.

    I’ve got to pop out for an hour, see you all in the fresh comments.


  321. Big Raddy says:

    Hey boys, wait for the post before discussing tonight, especially you Kelsey. You naughty boy 🙂

  322. Rasp says:

    evonne – that is not a particularly encouraging link 😦

    I have no doubt that Alex Ox will be a great player in the future but he is nowhere near ready to fill Nasri’s shoes.

  323. London says:

    It feels like being a child again writing a letter to Santa.

  324. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Last negative thought from me on the AM role. We have scored one goal in three games so far. RvP is the same goalscorer he was last season which means one in every four chances he gets ends up in the back of the net. He is simply not getting the quality service.
    An advanced midfielder is the absolute priority now as the forward line simply does not function as we are.

  325. London says:

    Dear Santa

    Please bring us

    1. Attacking creative midfielder
    2. Clinical striker
    3. Defender/CH

  326. Big Raddy says:

    AW has stated in the past he wanted to sign a player and then got his man in January. His statement will force up the price as any selling club will know our situation.

    But we have the money to make the signing and this time there are no excuses.

  327. Illybongani says:

    Morning all…my favourite chat up line? “Does this cloth smell of chloroform to you?”

  328. London says:

    AAAAaaaaaaahhhhhhhh, I have just noticed………Rasp is on the naughty list.

  329. Big Raddy says:

    Micky. Spot on.

  330. Big Raddy says:

    London. The naughty list?

  331. Rasp says:

    Illy 😆

    Raddy, I haven’t transgressed, the integrity of your post is unsullied by me, but there is a pretty pitch layout in your new favoured 4:3:3 😛

  332. Santa says:

    London, I may have granted you your wish if you hadn’t been such a naughty boy this year. Eating your clothing and hiding behind the sofa is hardly proper behaviour for a man of your age 😆

  333. Rasp says:

    New post …….

  334. GunnerPete says:

    Thank you Rocky re; my perspective…but it is always AFC. How sad is it that at 69 I still get shocking nerves when watching the team at any level? How sad is it that for one who does not drink hardly or smoke..that by pm today I will want to do both?

    I love harry’s squad comparison…and to the doomers (or fair weather gunners) I say again ‘ just imagine that lot plus Jack, Kossy plus the two new players I expect this week?

    Finally….just want to congratulate jenkinson & Miqel on their great performances. I remember Tony & Dixon’s debuts and they were rubbish compared to these two, so there is a great future ahead.

    Oh boy here comes the nerves again!

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