125 years! Hell of a long time, so long ago that Spurs title win was in the future and even Kelsey hadn’t been born :-).

And what a tradition our wonderful club has, what history, and always  (apart from Mr. Norris) a club with honour and class. To those lucky enough to be going today the opportunity to share in the celebrations is one not to be missed. Get there early (and smuggle in a Peroni or two)

Would you trust this man? (Henry Norris)

Henry Norris is an interesting man. He appears to have been something of a Harry Redknapp type character. As Arsenal Chairman he was accused of bribing Charlie Buchan (the Messi of his day) to come to Arsenal, he was also known to use the club’s money for a private chauffeur and car. In 1929  an FA investigation found that he had sold the Arsenal team bus for £125 and pocketed the money. He sued the FA and lost, subsequently to be banned for life from football (according to Wikipedia). But he was the man who bought Highbury and the man who kept us in the First Division. Sadly, no statue of Henry nor of George Graham!

The choice of statues was in my opinion controversial; does Thierry Henry mean more to the history of the Arsenal than Frank McLintock? Or David Jack or Wee Alex James or Ted Drake?  I could go on but I really think  that due to our  magnificent history there is a need to put more statues around the ground. Yes, TH is our top scorer and the best player I have seen in an Arsenal shirt, but Frank and his team are such an important part of our history. Still, today is not a day to be churlish, is it?

Onto today’s match, one we have to win to keep up our challenge and to enhance the festivities. The fallout of AW’s controversial decision to play first teamers in Athens is that we lack a left back, Vermaelen can play there but he is such a fantastic CB it is a waste of his talents, plus he lacks the game to be of assistance to Gervinho. We shall see how he fares as there is no obvious alternative.

My Team:

Big game for Arteta, who has been outstanding in recent games. He will want to impress his former colleagues.

Everton have selection problems with Rodwell out (thankfully) but expect a return for Saha. They are  not in a good run of form, nor do Everton have a good record at THOF. Nonetheless, they are a decent team and as Fulham showed, any team that is well organised can cause us problems.

Today’s Gooner: It is fitting to go back into the mists of time and find one of the original fans. One of our earliest fans was a chemist who worked at the Woolwich Arsenal and was involved in the Dial Square team, his name  – Frederick Augustus Abel (1827-1902). Frederick was football nuts but also found time to develop Cordite for which (amongst other inventions) he was rewarded with a Baronetcy. Top Man. Top Gooner.

Fred showing off his fine Facial Hair.

Like all fans of The Arsenal I am proud to be a Gooner, and proud that the club I support is By Far the Greatest Team the World Has Ever Seen.


written by Big Raddy. Arsenalic.


204 Responses to Respect!

  1. ozgunner says:

    cheers for the post BR, i am also grateful rodwell isn’t playing. Coleman likes to run at defenders all game so whoever is playing at LB needs to be on their toes. Personally i’d give miquel the job, against man city he was brilliant, he let johnson cut inside once and from that moment on he gave him nothing!

    For me id have a backline of:


    choosing which individuals deserve a statue was always going to be problematic as not everyone can be pleased. I agree chuck in more statues of arsenal greats. Dennis included!

  2. harry671 says:

    Nice one raddy, big day today but three points more important……

    Bang on the nail Oz, was just about to put that forward, i trust Miquel 100% compared to about 10% for Djourou, who truly has fell apart…

    Cannot wait for today, really up for it……….

    Have a spare for today as well, as my eldest has a hangover…….its an adult ticket, sitting next to me and my son reece……..

  3. VCC says:

    BR. Fine post Sir.
    So pleased you mentioned my Arsenal favourite = Frank McLintock.
    I suppose it would be an almost endless list if we all were to submit our favourites. They had to stop somewhere.

    My back line would read = Koscieny Mertesacker Vermaelen Miguel

  4. Jamie says:

    Good pre match as usual. Think Henry should have a statue though club record scorer.

    Are you lot in the tavern later?

  5. LB says:

    Good PM BR

    It is the first time that I have looked closely at our new crest… looks good.

  6. LB says:

    Koscieny Mertesacker Vermaelen Miguel

    I hope he goes with this aswell.

  7. mitchellafc says:

    Good post!
    I agree there should be more statues, but where would it end?! If we had a statue of each big player that everyone loved, they’d be everywhere, haha! Saying that, however, I agree about Dennis, and was surprised he didn’t have a statue!
    For anyone interested BTW, you can watch the full unveiling of Thierry Henry’s statue by clicking the link below, it’s very emotional!

  8. Gooner In Exile says:

    Morning all tip top pre match BR and I echo the jealousy of those there today. Would definitely be leaving Tavern early if I could.

    Harry if only I’d known about that last night all todays plans would have been cancelled. Id take your boy with hangover he needs to be there for this one.

    On Djourou yes he looked shaky on Tuesday but in Fulham and City games he was fine. And offered more attacking than Kozzer does from right back which we will need today.

    Think Oz may be right about Coleman but I have no worrys about Verm taking him on.

    This fixture last year I was giving Arteta pelters for time wasting and falling over at every opportunity after Sahas wrongly allowed goal.

    Unfortunately Everton will do as they always do and slow the game at every restart. Let’s hope the ref gets on top of it early otherwise could be one of those games where the ball is out of play more than it is in play.

  9. Red Arse says:

    Good and interesting Pre-match Raddy, as usual. 🙂

    I did not know that Fred Abel invented cordite, but then I had never heard of Fred Abel before today – thank you!

    I have recently been sneaking the odd look at a certain other blogsite, and the little chiggers over there have been unusually sotto voce in their nefarious comments about AW, the team and individual players.
    (Got to mean we (the club) are doing something right!) 🙂

  10. Gooner In Exile says:

    I’m guessing on the statue debate that TH top scoring, TA most successful Captain and Chapman football/Arsenal revolutionary are fitting.

    No doubt a plinth is reserved for Wenger when he retires.

    As for others Ray Kennedy, John Radford, McClintock, Wilson , Seaman, Rocky, Thomas are just a few that could be honoured.

    I’m going to be more interested to look at the benches and fan memories that’ll be displayed round and about today.

    You can criticise our club for some things, but one thing it gets consistently right are days like today. Proud to be a Gooner

  11. Red Arse says:

    Oz, 🙂

    I would go with your defence selection, particularly Miquel. (Won’t happen tho’)!

  12. harry671 says:

    GIE, I know, I am trying but he is like the walking dead, if i havent a taker by 1200, he is coming………

  13. harry671 says:

    Its strange, Wenger has already stated that TV will play left back, but we all want Miquel………..So Djourou is on the bench….

  14. dandan says:

    Alan Smith in todays telegraph.

    The most successful captain in the club’s history has been immortalised in bronze, along with Thierry Henry and Herbert Chapman at the Emirates Stadium.

    Unveiled yesterday, their statues now stand proudly outside the Emirates where the club today celebrates 125 years of existence. Everton are the visitors, the team Adams famously scored against in 1998 to seal Arsene Wenger’s first league title at Highbury.

    And it is the pose Adams adopted in celebrating that volley, two arms aloft with a beaming smile, that has been re-created for posterity’s sake.

    My old team-mate, the cheeky chappy from Essex forever getting into scrapes, has somehow turned into a proper living legend. Now working in Azerbaijan for Gabala FC, Adams is heading to Bucharest to meet with a potential signing. I suggest he has come a long way since joining Arsenal in 1979.

    “I know. And I can remember that day clearly now. You know what it was like up at London Colney. There was never much room. So because there wasn’t anywhere else to go, I signed the schoolboy forms in the toilets. It was the only quiet place Steve Burtenshaw [the chief scout] could find.
    “Then you look back at all the matches, the tough scraps at Barnsley or somewhere on a wet Tuesday night. It’s been a long road but this kind of thing makes it all worthwhile.

    “It’s been a year or more now since I found out about the statue. I’ve been working with the artist, giving him all my dimensions and that, making sure he increases my chest size by a few inches. Now it’s done, Ray Parlour actually reckons the statue moves quicker than me!

    “But seriously, I was thrilled to bits when I heard. It’s a massive honour to be recognised this way. I know some people think you should be dead before having a statue cast but, without wishing to get too profound, this commemorates a playing career that died a while back.”

    That may be the case but that hasn’t stopped Adams from keeping in touch, from sending the odd message back to his spiritual HQ. As the club’s present captain, Robin van Persie has received a few words of advice.

    “I’ve been texting RVP. I think he’s a nice guy and was always captaincy material but, before, he just didn’t have enough support. It was much easier for me in my time. I had six or seven lieutenants around me, people who could also take charge.

    “So that was something I said to him – get some players around you to back you up. You can’t do it alone. And to be fair, I think Per [Mertesacker] has been a big help. He’s been a good ally in the dressing room from what I hear. Before, there was conflict but now there seems to be a lot more togetherness.”

    No surprise either that this improved team spirit has coincided with a great run of results to reduce the heat on a man whose job security was being seriously questioned. Adams has often been quoted in the past as being critical of his old manager. Most recently, he appeared on the front cover of an in-flight magazine that had him doubting Wenger’s coaching abilities.

    A little embarrassingly, the magazine turned up on an Arsenal flight to leave Wenger facing one or two awkward questions. Yet Adams, as always, was only speaking his mind in pointing to the fact that Wenger’s biggest strength is recruiting top talent and giving it the platform to play. An emphasis on tactics has never been his thing.

    “I thought it was laughable when Arsene was getting all that stick at the start of this season”, Adams says. “Stupidly, he was put under pressure, people were wondering if he was the right man for the job, and I thought that was ridiculous.

    “So I offered my support, texting him a few times. Seems daft really. You could argue I’m the one more in need of advice as a young manager toiling away in Azerbaijan, not Arsene, the greatest manager in Arsenal’s history.”

    And it is for this reason, Adams’s tie-up with Gabala FC, that sees him on a train heading for Bucharest where a meeting awaits with a potential signing. Adams, however, has had enough of a role that had him organising everything, from cutting the grass to sorting out the kit.

    Not only that, his wife and children were living three hours away in the capital, Baku. After 18 months in the job, and with the team lying sixth in the Azerbaijani league, it is time to take a step back and evaluate his options.

    “To be honest, I don’t know what’s going to happen next. I’m hoping to meet up with the [club] president in Austria next week and we’ll take it from there. Maybe a less hands-on director-of-football role could work or maybe I will leave altogether. We’ll see.”

    Yet listening to him talk, it’s obvious that he is enjoying life to the full. Thankfully, the dark days have long since been banished, to be replaced by a deep appreciation of his lot.

    “I’m 15 years sober, feeling fresh as a daisy. Life is fantastic, an unbelievable adventure.”

    Part of that adventure was helping to set up Sporting Chance, the charitable foundation aimed at providing counselling and treatment for sports people with addictions. It has recently been contacted in the wake of Gary Speed’s death by several footballers suffering from depression.

    Like everyone, Adams was shocked by Speed’s tragic passing, but he is reluctant to be a constant spokesman on such delicate issues.

    “I don’t want to be giving my opinion on matters that other people within our charity are much better qualified to discuss. Sporting Chance has been around for 11 years now and I’m very proud of that fact. But I’ve moved away to do other things. Principally, I’m a coach who is determined to do well.”

    Where that ambition takes him next is unknown for now. But if he came back to England, he insists it could only be to one place.

    The statue tells the tale. Adams is Arsenal.

  15. evonne says:

    Dandan – we are in agreement – Tony Adams is Arsenal. I would LOVE to see him back in a coaching role

  16. evonne says:

    Raddy – thank you very much for even better than usual pre match, much appreciated.

    I have to say though, that I sort of like Henry Norris. Not only that he brought us to Highbury but he pulled some strings to have Spurs relegated to the lower league and Arsenal elevated to the higher one, where we rightfully belong!! He really hurt the Scum, good man in my books 🙂

  17. dandan says:

    He has much to learn Evonne, but it was his assesment of the dressing room and RVP that interested me.

    Sorry Raddy forgot to say, good article mate, although I wouldnt argue with the choice of bronzes as for GG no way, he damaged the name of Arsenal and that cannot be forgiven.

  18. Big Raddy says:

    No argument with the statues – just pointing out that there were other candidates. Not to have any reference to our Captain of the first Double team + First Euro Cup is a mistake IMO but as I said, one I am sure will be remedied in the near future.

    I did laugh when I read about how Norris sold the team bus – very Harry.

  19. Big Raddy says:

    DD. It was said in jest. Poor GG is persona non grata at AFC which I think is wrong. Yes his greed let the club down but he is human. After all – Let he who is without sin ……

    Had he not screwed up we would not be the huge club we are now. Would AW have come if GG was say Director of Football? A definite No.

    I would like to see GG out there with AW, Frank, TH and the others. He was such an integral part of our success.

  20. pat says:

    @harry671 if Verm is at LB and DJ is on the bench who is RB? I am confused by your 10:47 am. Or do you mean everyone wants Miquel so DJ is benched?

    My head says Vermalen at CB (I agree with Miquel at LB) but I would like to see Verm play at LB for a game or two just out of interest – always great to see his attacking game.

    Maybe something is wrong with Miquel to cause AW to put Verm in there.

  21. Chas says:

    Nice one BR.
    I like Norris too. Getting up the nose of the spuds makes him alegend in my eyes. GG went and joined them, ffs!
    GIE, didn’t you see that Micky had a spare early evening yesterday?


    Great stuff Raddy,

    Even though he could give Arthur Daley a run for his money,there should be a 50 foot statue of Sir Henry Norris. 90 years on and the mere mention of his name enrages Tottenham fans.

  23. dandan says:

    BR It is very charitable of you and a tribute to your generosity of spirit, that you are prepared to forgive and forget with GG, My problem is in reading the memoirs of those who played under him he was a real tightwad and apparently had no generosity himself.
    The records show that despite insisting on being the highest paid club employee, he was at the same time falsifying the transfer dealings to his own advantage..

  24. evonne says:

    Terry and Chas – YES !!

  25. pat says:

    What a great day to be a gunner – looking forward to catching any part of the 125 celebrations on TV. Make it a game to remember anyone going – hoping to hear you from the other side of the world…:-) . Heres to Arteta getting a goal from a great free kick – that would take care of Evertons 125 birthday gift!

  26. 2 days ago,
    Mad Jens: “We don’t want to see Manchester City in the Champions League.” — I think we’re in agreement here.

    AAers: “We don’t want to see Djourou on the pitch.” — I don’t think that would happen unless he pick up an unusual injury while warming up.

    My back four – Kos BFG Verm Miquel

    I fancy us to win by 3-0.

    “A great club is a club that respect their hero and history”

  27. fatgingergooner says:

    Great words from TA. It’s good to hear his positivity towards the current manager and squad rather than some twisted story about how he doesn’t like Arsene.

    As for the game, 3 points today and a Chelsea loss against City would see us hit the top 4 before Xmas!!!!! Tho I would prefer a draw in the Chelsea game. Top 4 can wait til next week!

  28. gunnern5 says:

    BR: I suggest that a statue of GG peeking around the corner with one hand in his back pocket would be appropriate.

    Thanks for the pre-match, always an enjoyable read.

  29. gunnern5 says:

    Dandan, thank you for posting the article on Adams. I was concerned that his no show at the unveiling might have meant that he was at odds with the club but the article indicates that his heart still belongs to Arsenal.

    I, for one, hopes that he does return to the club, once he has earned his coaching spurs.

  30. gunnern5 says:

    I was just talking to my wife and she reminded me that my Grandad saw the first game at Highbury in 1913, which means that Arsenal has been in my family’s genes for nearly 100 years.

  31. gunnern5 says:

    To compliment BR’s pre-match here is the story of Sir Henry.


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

    Several years later he began building houses in North London. A member of the Conservative Party he became a local councillor. Norris became extremely wealthy as a result of his property development company and invested in Fulham Football Club. He was also a prominent Freemason, rising to become Grand Deacon of the United Grand Lodge of England.

    In 1893 Arsenal was elected to the Second Division of the Football League. It was decided that Arsenal needed to buy its own ground. The only way to raise enough money for this venture was to form a limited liability company. Most of the shareholders were manual workers who lived locally. However, Norris began buying shares in Arsenal and eventually became the chairman of the club.

    Leslie Knighton who worked under Norris later commented: “I have never met his equal for logic, invective and ruthlessness against all who opposed him. When I disagreed with him at board meetings and had to stand up for what I knew was best for the club, he used to flay me with words until I was reduced to fuming, helpless silence.”

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

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

    It cost Henry Norris £80,000 to build Highbury Stadium. Norris desperately needed Arsenal to get back into the First Division if he was to get a profit out of his investment. However, in the 1913-14 season Arsenal finished in 3rd place and failed to go up because of a worse goal average than Bradford Park Avenue. The outbreak of the First World War made it impossible for Arsenal to win promotion over the next four years.

    During the war Norris worked as a military recruitment officer for the British Army. In 1917 he was knighted and given the honorary rank of colonel for services to his country during the war.

    In the 1918 General Election Henry Norris was elected to the House of Commons as the Conservative Party member for Fulham East.

    At the end of the war it was decided to increase the First Division from 20 to 22 clubs. One solution to the problem was to allow the relegated clubs in the 1914-15 season, Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur, to remain in the First Division. However, Henry Norris disputed this idea. He argued that a great deal of match-fixing had gone on in the 1914-15 season and that league positions should be disregarded. The reason for this was that Arsenal had finished in 5th place in the Second Division in the 1914-15 season and therefore had no grounds for being elected to the First Division.

    It was decided to give Chelsea one of the vacant places in the First Division. However, Norris persuaded the league chairman to vote on the other club to join them. Arsenal won the ballot with 18 votes. Spurs only got 8 whereas Barnsley, who finished 3rd in the Second Division in the 1914-15 season, received 5 votes. Many people were of the opinion that Norris had bribed his fellow chairmen in order to win the election.

    In June 1919 Henry Norris appointed Leslie Knighton as manager of Arsenal. However, Knighton was just a figurehead and Norris took all the major decisions. For example, he told Knighton he could not spend more than £1,000 on anyone player. Nor was he allowed to sign anyone under 5 foot 8 inches or 11 stone. Knighton was also ordered to abandon the Arsenal scouting system.

    In his autobiography Leslie Knighton wrote in some detail about Henry Norris: “I have never met his equal for logic, invective and ruthlessness against all who opposed him. When I disagreed with him at board meetings and had to stand up for what I knew was best for the club, he used to flay me with words until I was reduced to fuming, helpless silence.”

    Understandably, the club enjoyed no success under Knighton’s managership. Although he did manage to buy some excellent players such as Alf Baker, Ray John and Jimmy Brain. Arsenal’s best league position was 9th in 1921. In the FA Cup Arsenal only got beyond the second round once, in 1922, when they lost to Preston North End in the quarter finals after a replay.

    Henry Norris sacked Leslie Knighton at the end of the 1924-25 season. Norris advertised the job in the Athletic News on 11th May 1925. It read: “Arsenal Football Club is open to receive applications for the position of Team Manager. He must be experienced and possess the highest qualifications for the post, both as to the ability and personal character. gentlemen whose sole ability to build up a good side depends on the payment of heavy and exorbitant transfer fees need not apply.”

    In the summer of 1925 Herbert Chapman, the highly successful manager of Huddersfield Town, was persuaded to join Arsenal. Whereas Huddersfield had won the championship, Arsenal had narrowly escaped relegation by finishing in 20th position.

    The first man that Chapman signed was Charlie Buchan, who had scored 209 goals in 380 games for Sunderland. Bob Kyle, the Sunderland manager, explained to Buchan the complex arrangements of the deal: “We pay Sunderland cash down £2,000, and then we hand over £100 to them for every goal you score during your first season with Arsenal.”

    In the 1925-26 season Arsenal finished in second-place to Chapman’s old club, Huddersfield Town. Top scorer was Jimmy Brain who established a new club record with 33 goals. Charlie Buchan scored 21 goals that season which brought the amount paid by Arsenal to Sunderland to £4,100.

    Henry Norris refused to allow Herbert Chapman to spend much money to strengthen his team and in the 1926-27 season Arsenal finished in 11th position.

    In 1927 the Daily Mail reported that Henry Norris had made under-the-counter payments to Sunderland’s Charlie Buchan as an incentive for him to join Arsenal in 1925. The Football Association began an investigation of Norris and discovered that he had used Arsenal’s expense accounts for personal use, and had obtained the proceeds of £125 from the sale of the team bus. Norris sued the newspaper and the FA for libel, but in February 1929 he lost his case. The FA now banned Norris from football for life.

    Sir Henry Norris died of a massive heart attack on 30th July 1934

  32. ozgunner says:

    thanks for the articles dandan and G5, both good reads.

    I hope Adams comes back, a mentor like role (similar to viera) would be good, but i suppose he wants to earn his stripes and come back in a bigger capacity!

    At least with 4 CB’s we won’t lose a set piece (touch wood!)
    It is also imperative we do not give away any cheap free kicks around the box because baines is deadly. Lets not forget he took over arteta as a dead ball specialist. We don’t want a larsson type situation again

  33. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    The usual fine stuff BR.
    I`ve never put a name on any of my shirts, but if i did, it would probably be Henry Norris, Legend !

  34. ozgunner says:

    sorry off topic but anyone who hasn’t seen the movie ‘warrior’ has to see it. Best movie i’ve ever seen

    The song is amazing too (the national-about today)

  35. Red Arse says:

    Chezzer, JD, Mert, Kozzer, TV
    Arteta, Song, Walcott, Rambo
    Gervinho, RVP

    Just announced

  36. Red Arse says:


    Almunia, Rosicky, AA, PingPong, Chamakh, Benny, Miquel

  37. Big Raddy says:

    BR 100% 🙂

    Expect to see Tim Howard give his best performance of the season. He always does against us.

  38. fatgingergooner says:


    Heard its a great film but not seen it yet.

    Watched The Fighter the other day. Christian Bale is very underrated. Great actor.

  39. fatgingergooner says:


    Congrats on the personal family landmark, pretty impressive.

  40. ozgunner says:

    He is FGG, but as the reviews state ‘the fighter’ is over acted. This is a gritty master piece, a fighting movie this good hasn’t been seen since rocky. I’ll be surprised if nick nolte doesn’t win a few awards from it.

    Come on gunners, 3-0, another easy win! enjoy the game all

  41. goonermichael says:

    Fantastic post Raddy and a fantastic post yesterday Terry.

    Working in this industry having Saturdays off is not really an option so I don’t have the dilemnas that a lot of you have had as I’ve alweays been an armchair fan.
    I realy enjoyed reading your stories though. The choice of statues is strange but I imagine there will be more. Bergkamp and Brady would be nice.

  42. Big Raddy says:

    Come on Theo. Sit behind the last man not in front of him! Basic.

  43. goonermichael says:

    Rocky is rubbish oz.

  44. goonermichael says:

    mancs are winning 😦

  45. goonermichael says:

    I’m following this on the bbc website and the possession has gone from 71% us to 56% them.

  46. goonermichael says:

    wolves are going to get a spanking I think.

  47. goonermichael says:

    barcodes losing

  48. fatgingergooner says:

    Demba Ba anyone?

    17 in 26 in the PL is top quality

  49. Big Raddy says:

    When we started to roast their FB’s in the opening 10 mins I thought we would have won the game by halftime. Not to be. Wasteful finishing, poor final pass and lack of confidence spoiling the party.

    Theo on top of his game apart from some wayward crosses.

  50. Red Arse says:

    I am pissed off with that clown Trevor ‘asshole’ Francis.His commentary is full of anti Arsenal wishfull thinking and poisonous rubbish.

    How can someone as thick as him be allowed on TV?

  51. Red Arse says:

    We could easily be 4:0 up. Finishing is not up to scratch, even RVP cannot seem to control the ball! 😦

  52. Big Raddy says:

    RA. It is a pre-requisite of TV pundits. Savage, Francis, Gale etc ???

  53. Big Raddy says:

    We need to get Gervinho on the ball

  54. fatgingergooner says:

    He’s avin a shocker according to Le Tiss!


  55. Big Raddy says:

    Only RvP could finish like that. Brilliant.

  56. fatgingergooner says:

    GET IN THERE!!!!!

    It’s not the performance, its the points that matter.

    Top 4 before Xmas, clean sheet, but a club in crisis who can’t defend.

  57. Big Raddy says:

    Phew. . Up into 4th. but we made hard work of Everton.

  58. Big Raddy says:

    FGG. You are right. It is just the points that matter.

  59. kelsey says:

    The golden rule of blogging is never to post at half time 🙂

    by no means a spectacle but what a goal, worthy to win any match, and thanks BR for the write up.
    RVP has to be man of the match purely for securing the points but again kos was outstanding.

  60. I feel an old song coming on…… One nil to the Arsenal! One nil to the Arsenal! One nil to the Arsenal!

    Perhaps George Graham was their in spirit if not in person.

  61. goonermichael says:

    Just read the comments on another site. The slating our players get by “Arsenal” fans is beyond a joke. Bitches

  62. Big Raddy says:

    GM. They are Championship Manager fans. Never been to a game in their lives. It is all Buy Hazard/ Benzema / Gotze / etc etc

    true we were not as fluent as we have been but Everton closed us down in their own half (after half time!). We won – end of. No-one was outstanding either positively or negatively..

    Actually Szczesny was immaculate again today.

  63. RvP awesome! Another 3 points and clean sheet plus leapfrog Chavs to 4th on the table. Happy day. 🙂

    Question: what is your desired result for Chavs vs Citeh match?

    @LG, One nil to the Arsenal, I’d gladly take it 🙂

  64. fatgingergooner says:

    I just wanna take a moment to praise Wigan. I hope they stay up this year because they have shown that you can stick by your manager and play football and still compete at this level. Blackburn fans should take a look at Wigan and be ashamed. They never doubt there manager or club even when times are hard. Certain Blackburn fans booed Yakubu last week for celebrating s goal with his manager. What a joke.

    Well done Wigan and well done their chairman for sticking by a top young manager.

  65. Red Arse says:


    Hard to argue with you re your assessment, but I would shade it a bit by saying that Chezzer, Ramsey, Kozzer, Song and TV played well, and again I liked the way Miquel conducted himself when he came on.

    Robin was not as immaculate with his control as he usually is, but MoTM for that goal – we would be buggered without him!

  66. Red Arse says:


    We are unlikely to catch moneybags Citeh, but the Chavs are there for the taking — so Citeh to win for me — Chelsea to stay in 5th.

  67. SharkeySure says:

    (Auto paste) Great pre match Mr Radders. I absolutely love the inventors and famous Gooners series. They’re even better with b&w pics !

  68. fatgingergooner says:

    I don’t think it’s the fact they have never been to a game, after all, neither have I! I think it’s that they listen to the press too much and are not willing to open their minds to others points of view. We could all have sat and slated Wenger and Arsenal over the last year, and I can see where they are coming from on occasion, but, what you have to be able to do is keep an open mind and accept when people prove you wrong. Wenger and Arsenal have proved a lot of people wrong but some, unfortunately, are so stubborn that they will never accept this.

    Also, some only judge success by trophies, and if Arsenal are not winning these trophies ( even on an unlevel playing field) then certain people will see this as failure. What they don’t realise, however, is that their appetite for trophies was actually brought to them by Arsene Wenger, the man they want out!

    Ironic,some would say.

  69. Big Raddy says:

    FGG Agree re: Wigan.

  70. SharkeySure says:

    I thought Ramsey was brilliant today. Not everything came off, but his work rate and availability was a joy to behold.

  71. Big Raddy says:

    RA- True. RvP was below par today apart from his goal. He made some poor decisions and his control was not as immaculate as we have come to expect. But then he sets such fantastically high standards.

    The whole defence played well and apart from the shot at the death they blunted Everton’s attack. Did Chesney have a save to make apart from long distance headers and a cross or two?

    The midfield was a battle ground and Everton worked so hard it was difficult for our boys to escape their markers, especially when the Toffees FB’s and MF’s filled the gaps on the wings. Gervinho drifted inside and became anonymous after looking dangerous early on.

    Looking forward to reading the live match experiences

  72. RockyLives says:

    Great pre-match BR (as always)

    I haven’t been around much lately because of work but have enjoyed the posts and comments. Work is easing up now, so I’ll be spending a bit more time with you all up to Christmas 🙂

    A good grind-out win today when we weren’t at our best (although with a bit more composure we could have been out of sight by half time).

    What a player the Prince is. His touch was marginally off for most of the game but he still managed to win the match with a contender for goal of the season. And great credit to Songinho for a perfectly flighted and weighted pass to set him up.

    It’s all about the points at the moment and these were three very valuable ones (particularly as the Orcs are going to beat the Spuds tomorrow).

    Good performances all round. I thought Verm and JD did well as FBs, but it definitely affects our flow to not have out-and-out FBs playing. Fortunately both Theo and Gerv were excellent in their support for their respective backs.

    Does anyone know the timetable for when Gibbs, Santos, Jenks and Sagna are due back..?

  73. RockyLives says:

    By the way, I thought Everton were pretty good.

    If they had a striker who could find the net they would be a lot higher up the table and I am sure they will be tough opposition for most other sides as the season goes on.

  74. Jamie says:

    Great result. Forced a win. I would venture to say that I know rate Song a world class. Him and RVP made it happen today.

    Was behind all the AAers leaving the tavern but was in the middle of a story about King Henry with a work mate but I think I have introduced him to the site.

  75. Big Raddy says:

    RL. Good to see you back in ether print.

    FB’s? All have serious injuries. I guess Gibbs will be the first back in a couple of weeks though according to the Physio Room he has an inguinal hernia (nasty) and has no date for return. Sagna should be back mid-Jan. Santos – no news but AW said it is more serious than first thought and not in Dec. Jenkinson? Again no date – a stress fracture of the back in one so young is a dangerous injury and can become chronic

  76. mickydidit89 says:

    On the way back from game.
    There’s the sneaky 1-0 to the arsenal and then there’s Robin’s version!
    Great to meet up woth the gang again.
    Great pre match Raddy.

  77. LB says:

    Phew, just back, I know Everton didn’t create any clear cut chances but I found that nerve racking.
    One piece of World Class skill from Robin van Persie, the only player on the field capable of producing such brilliance, separated the two sides.
    As to when Santos, Sagna, Jenks and Gibbs in that order of importance are back the answer is not soon enough.
    Koscielny and Vermaelen both did well but we missed the extra attacking dimension that Santos and Jenks would have brought to bear today.

  78. Red Arse says:

    Hi Rockedemius, 🙂

    I have missed your posts and comments and look forward to hearing your views between now and Xmas.

    We could easily have run out 4 or 5 nil winnerstoday if, as you say, we were a bit more composed and confident in front of goal.

    Cannot help wondering how we would get on without our flying Dutchman.

    We badly need a goal scoring back up to help him out!!

  79. RockyLives says:

    I meant to say, one of the funniest opening sentences of any post ever… 😀

  80. evonne says:

    good game, great result, nice to see you all, off to warm up my frozen body

    Oh, Thierry was crying, I started to cry, it all got a bit emotional

    GiE – thanks for the ‘he scores when he wants….’, I proudly shouted it out with the rest

  81. RockyLives says:

    Hello Redders
    I’ve been travelling, working and travelling… frankly it’s not on.

    But things will start winding down now so I’m looking forward to rejoining the badinage.

  82. LB says:

    Badinage………I have just learnt a new word.

  83. BR 6.15pm,

    According to:

    Gibbs could be return on boxing day (vs Wolves at Ems), no return date for the other fullbacks.

  84. RockyLives says:

    It’s what dyslexics use to cover a cut…

  85. RockyLives says:

    Thanks Nike
    We do need our FBs back. Apart from anything else, none of our main CBs can get a rest if they have to keep playing as FBs.

  86. TotalArsenal says:

    BR, thanks for the great match report today and well done with predicting the starting 11! 🙂

    Very happy with 3 points today. Typically Moyes: he loves being the underdog against the bigger teams and set up his team like that. Cannot wait to see the summary on MotD.

    Looking fwd to watching RM – Barca tonight as well. What a battle that promises to be. I hope Mourinho’s team gets thumped again! I loathe that prick.

  87. goonermichael says:

    I hope they spank the dirty catalans. I loathe them so much more

  88. TotalArsenal says:

    Wow, GM that is a peach(es) of a goal! And what a brilliant assist by Alex. The second time in short succession that Song and RvP produce something extra-special between them! Top stuff. 🙂


    Just back. Grinding 3 points. I have to go and defrost my goolies, man ime cold, knew i should have worn those thermals.

    Loudest cheer during the legends pre match was for Rocky Rocastles son. “Oh rocky rocky, rocky rocky rocastle”

  90. goonermichael says:

    Off to the pub. See you all later!!

  91. TotalArsenal says:

    GM ‘dirty catalans’: strong words, but it sounds really nasty: you leave no doubt about your feelings about them 🙂

  92. evonne says:

    TA – are they showing the game on TV tonight?

  93. RockyLives says:

    I’m with you – I want RM to beat Barca. The Catalans are way too smug and they cheated us out of the CL last year by buying a ref.

    Following your earlier comment GM I had a peek on ‘another site”. The abuse being heaped on Ramsey (in particular) as well as several other players makes you realise how thick those people are and makes you appreciate the fact that AA regulars have a much more sophisticated appreciation of football.

  94. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi Evonne, yes on Skysports1 – kick off is at 9pm.

  95. TotalArsenal says:

    I respect anybody’s opinion, but I cannot believe anyone would want RM to win. They are the Man City of Spain – desperately trying to buy a title by throwing obscene amounts of money at it. Barca are not without fault, especially the diving is dreadful, but they still play football as it should be played, and their team is predominantly build on their youth-development system. Just imagine Mourinho’s ego-worshipping if and when he beats Barca to the title/CL this season! 😦

  96. evonne says:

    thanks TA

    RL and GM – me too, because they unsettled and subsequently poached our best players

  97. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi VCC, if you are reading the blog, many thanks for the soundtrack today (Peaches/Rasp forwarded it on to me today) 🙂


    They both exude arrogance, but to be fair, they do have a lot to be arrogant about. If we were to beat either in this years champions league final, i think i will spontaniously combust…..but it would be worth it.

  99. fatgingergooner says:

    I want to see a Barca win. Their off field antics leave a lot to be desired, as do some of their on field tricks. But when they pass the ball it is a joy to watch. We have all loved the way Arsenal have played over the years and for me, this team has taken it to a new level. Madrids efforts to match them has not been in to try and play better football, it has been to act like dicks and try and upset Barca’s game. We have all had a go at the likes of Stoke and Bolton for using similar tactics so I don’t see why you would want to support Real, but each to their own.

  100. LB says:


    Stop sitting on the fence, take a position man lol


    Your right FGG, Barcas football is incredible. In all the years ive been going its the most amazing team i have ever seen. I would still gladly combust if we turn them over in the final though.

  102. kelsey says:

    The mark of a great player,.has one of his worst games of the season but can score such a fantastic goal.he has raised the bar himself and we must keep him.Sczney kissing his left boot was fantastic.

    For one day only I am a stoke fan tomorrow.Too many teams chasing for the top 4 positions. With gervinho off to the ANC will AW invent another striker.

    As to the other site I agree why the targeting of Ramsey ? Most probable the average age on there has plummeted to about 11.

  103. LB says:

    Arteta has been described as the oil by which the team moves around but Ramsey is the petrol which fires the team into action. His work rate was frightening, unsurprising to me he trailed off towards the end.
    I am convinced this pattern will continue: it is not going to be possible for Ramsey to expend that amount of energy twice a week for too long, we are going to need a bit of help from the elusive Diaby in the not too distant future.

  104. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi LB, good call on Ramsey. Diaby is an option and so are Rosicky and Wilshere. Sooner or later, I can see the Ox being played in the hole, but not in the current system of multi-skilled, allround midfielders.

  105. LB says:

    Hi TA

    I am not a believer that Wilshere can play where Ramsey does, he certainly hasn’t played there to date. I know this one has been kicked around before on the site and many come on and say, of course, he can play there but to me it is like saying that van Persie being a good keeper could play in goal, yes he can but he is not suited to the role.
    Diaby is the man, although that said I do agree that Rosicky could play there and like you I am sure that the Ox will make it his position as well.

  106. fatgingergooner says:

    Looking forward to the barca game. Should be the closest in a long time. Will be interesting to see Cesc, he was Hit and miss in the big games for us.

  107. kelsey says:

    I agree with LB, if anyone is interested.

  108. Gooner In Exile says:

    Evening all 😀

    Haven’t seen any of game except RvPs goal…quality.

    On Wilshere to kick it around a bit more whilst he hadn’t played that role yet in the PL it is the role he played for many of the games I saw him in the youth team (especially in the FA Youth Cup winning side). He was the one that opened defences and created chances. The thing is he has more than Cesc in this role and for me is closer to Messi, he drifts past players like they aren’t there. He can pass and he can score.

    Maybe not at senior level yet but he can do all those things. The best thing about our current midfield is last year you couldn’t imagine it without Wilshere, now he has to fight for his place and up his game another level.

  109. fatgingergooner says:

    Ramsey is coming up to 21, Wilshire is 19. These boys will be the future together. Look at Xavi and Iniesta, no one wonders of they can play each others position, they are seen as a collective because they are so good.

    Wilshire, for me, will see very little football this year. If he comes back he will probably pick up the odd muscle strain as is the norm when coming back from mid to long term injury. Next season will be the time to pick the best midfield, but in the modern game, the squad is more important than the starting 11. After all, what good is the starting 11 if a few are injured?

  110. chas says:

    Just back from the game.
    The Arsenal produced a result today, hewn out of solid rock.
    They chipped away at a defence of massive density and created such a beautifully crafted 3 points.
    Apt and fitting on such a statue-unveiling, 125 year-celebrating day in the history of the greatest football club in the world.

  111. chas says:

    hahahahahahah 1-0 Real

  112. LB says:


    I agree with your second paragraph but why pick Inesta and Xavi as though they should be compared to Ramsey and Wilshere why not Xavi and Busquets? Why, because they play totally different roles the same way that Ramsey and Wilshere play totally different roles. Most people who chip in on this subject can’t even see the difference between the Ramsey role and the Arteta role, Arteta cannot play the Ramsey role now can he?

  113. fatgingergooner says:

    Best possible start for the game as a whole

  114. chas says:

    What a beauty what a beauty!
    Van Pershie… boom

  115. fatgingergooner says:


    The reason I didn’t say Busquets is because I don’t believe he is of the quality of Xavi or Iniesta.

    If Wilshire and Ramsey stay with Arsenal then I believe they could be the next best midfield pairing in the world. Busquets is never mentioned in the same sentence because he doesn’t have the class of Xavi and Iniesta, not because he plays deeper.

    As for position. Wilshire, for me, has the ability, energy and vision to play any of the 3 midfield places we have. However, I don’t believe that Ramsey has that ability. For me, his best position is as the further most midfielder. I don’t believe he has the discipline to play as the other 2 positions.

  116. fatgingergooner says:

    Only just seen the goal. 2 things:

    1. What an unbelievable ball by Song to not only find RvP, but also to land it on his left peg. Tell me another “DM” who could do that?

    2. How good was it to see the captain run straight to the bench and be surrounded not only by his fellow players but also by his fellow strikers.

    Best captain since TA?

  117. fatgingergooner says:

    #sorry, since PV.

  118. ozgunner says:

    early days FGG, i still think viera gets the nod for that one.

    @ GM

    taking into account the time when rocky was released how could you possibly say that? BLASPHEMY!

    As for real > barca i agree
    knocking us out two years in a row, the way they handled the cesc situation, cesc, xavi, pique and co have all left me hating them with a passion!

    @ TMHT 7.30

    great comment, i feel i also would! if…i mean WHEN arsenal win the champions league or if miranda kerr looked at me there would no longer be an ozgunner.

  119. ozgunner says:

    sorry FGG didnt see your correction

  120. RockyLives says:

    I saw the Prince’s celebration and thought exactly the same as you – what a leader.

  121. LB says:


    Wilshere has never played the current Ramsey role, so I am not sure how you arrive at that view, he doesn’t have the height to shield the defence so I am not sure why you believe he can play the current Song role but hey ho I certainly hope you are right.

  122. fatgingergooner says:

    No worries OG.

    What do you think of our squad depth after the display in Greece?

    For me, making that many changes will 9 times out of 10 result in an off display and doesn’t show true potential. I believe the back 4 today showed that without our 4 recognised full backs we do have strength in depth. To put out that group of 4 defenders shows we have the squad.

    My only worry, as I’m sure many would agree with, is up front. I just hope AW sorts this in January, but I don’t think he will.

  123. fatgingergooner says:


    I have seen him play many a great pass in the final 3rd and his ability to drift past people is world class. I’m not saying that he is naturally an attacking midfielder, but his performances for England espescially, suggest it could be his natural home. He has played in front of Parker a couple of times and really shown what a top class forward thinking midfielder he could be.

  124. fatgingergooner says:

    As for the Song role, he has the bite and nastiness that Song and Ramsey lack. I’m not trying to say that he would ever need to play the Song role, but I believe he could do the job if needed.

    Ramsey, on the other hand, is a specialist. He has the passing game of the likes of Carrick and Huddlestone but he also has the ability of people like Xavi and Scholes.

    Technically, I think Ramsey is going to be world class, but how good will it be to see that complimented by the bite and energy of Wilshire (not to do him an injustice)

  125. chas says:

    Didn’t Jack always play in an advanced attacking midfield role for the reserves and youths in his Arsenal career so far?
    Even for Bolton he never played as a DM but either as a wing forward or in a free role.

  126. ozgunner says:

    @ FGG

    i think we have great squad depth, if we pick up a striker in jan i think we have better reserves than man city, and we have arsene to thank for that.

    Yes greece was a slip-up but if you consider:
    *away from home
    *greek champions
    *haven’t played much together
    *experience levels
    *we were through, they gave it their all to get through!

    With experience comes consistency (well you hope), and you give more time into coq,miq,frim,ox, jenks, and so forth and we are laughing. To answer your question i am very happy with our squad depth.

    You make a good point in regards to the defence. I’ve always felt the defence is the most important part of a team. Once we got that sorted we were going to be dangerous. Verm and kozza have been a revelation. Santos and BFG have been great additions. Sagna is as consistent as the day is long, and defensively the best RB in the world. Jenks is a work horse that will only getter better, and gibbs is well always injured unfortunently.

  127. Gooner In Exile says:

    FGG I think you are right. Squad depth is not about fielding 11 different players and expecting the team to get the same result as the first eleven. It is about coping with injuries and fixture congestion by rotation and small changes.

    In reality we can do that at the back. In the midfield we have options. If we mix and match one or two players in and out we will be ok.

    Up front we don’t in all three positions. Change any of them and the team loses too much balance.

    Therefore we need to adopt the play for 60-70 minutes rotation policy in which we are 3-0 up after twenty minutes coast to 60-70 and take off players up top for their well earned breaks.

    How did JD do at right back today? And Verm at left back?

  128. Gooner In Exile says:

    Evidently not Chas 🙂

  129. fatgingergooner says:


    I’m starting, unfortunately, to lose patience with Gibbs. When he comes back I would love us to push him into a LW as with Bale at Spurs. Bale suffered a few injuries at LB but as soon as he moved forward they seemed to ease off. With the emergance of Santos, Miquel and in desperation TV, and with the awfulness of AA, I think it could be a plus for all involved.

  130. ozgunner says:

    i think Wilshere can play in the ramsey or arteta role easily. His passing game would would be an asset in the final third, his shooting needs fine tuning (as did cesc’s but then he started banging them in for fun, so will wilshere). Defensively he is very solid, and i love his slide to steal the ball, bounce back up, and take off running (it’s his trademark, and watching him do it time and time again so effortlessly is a joy to behold). The world is jack’s oyster, wherever arsene plays him he will be world class! To get the best out of ramsey though i’d give wilshere the arteta role.

    With ramsey, wilshere and song slicing defences open with killer balls RVP will be laughing all the way to golden boot awards!

  131. fatgingergooner says:

    What a goal by Cesc.

    Some hate him,but for me,he was a gent and deserves everything he gets.

    He will never get a statue, and doesn’t deserve one, but that doesn’t mean he never gave his all for this club.

    Cesc left under awkward circumstances, but certain people have said GG deserves a statue today. I think that says it all.

  132. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Cesc just scored with a diving header 3-1 to Barca

  133. ozgunner says:

    Manure are in big trouble! having watched them today you can see just how much vidic means to their defence. He is man uniteds Verm (not as good of course), and without him they have rio (had it), evans (joke of a CB now), smalling and jones (good but still very raw). Add that with the departure of VDS and you have one shakey defensive unit! About time these other top teams suffered some key injuries, we always have to deal with them but we hang on and make do, the question is can they?

    @ FGG

    i agree, i’m nearly at the end of my tether with gibbs. He has so much promise (future england LB), but it seems if someone sneezes in the front row he will get injured. In saying that i should reserve my judgement because i like most fans nearly gave up on RVP, now look at him, i wouldn’t trade him for anyone! He is after all prince robin!

  134. chas says:

    GG and David O’Leary looked like they were in the unwanted section of the legends presentation today.

  135. ozgunner says:

    i can never forgive cesc, he’s like the ex-girlfriend who you love with all your heart, but then leaves stomping on your heart in the process! The void fills with hatred and spite.

    I get he wanted to go home, i’d do the same. But it was the manner in which he did it. Plus as a biased arsenal supporter i can never understand why anyone would want to leave!

  136. fatgingergooner says:


    Smalling and Jones are both future great CB’s, but Uniteds problems lay elsewhere. They have an awful CM which means Jones is needed there and they have injured FB’s which means Smalling is needed there.

    Evans is terrible and Rio has had it but they have no one else. When Cleverley returns they will be a force again but to think of United as a team relying on a young CM is crazy, just as it is with us and JW.

    Man U will definately buy a CM in January if they can find the money. Carrick, Anderson and Park just doesn’t cut it for a top 4 side

  137. VCC says:

    chas 10:32. O’Leary, that treacherous son of a b—- should feel ashamed to be honoured by Arsenal, after all the many insults he flew at us when he was Leeds manager. After all, Arsenal made him what he is today. Ungrateful bugger.
    Sorry guys but I hate this guy, after many years paying to watch him and idolising him.

  138. fatgingergooner says:

    But do you not think Oz that the silence forced uponh him by the club made him look like the villain.

    He has never had a bad word to say about Arsenal since moving so why would that be different whilst he was with us?

    I got 3-2 Barca for £34, come on Madrid!!!!

  139. VCC says:

    TA 7:23 …No worries, hope you enjoy them.

  140. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Even worse, How could you leave, If you supported the club aswell, asin Ashley Cole or how could you choose Manure over Arsenal in Smallings case. ?

  141. LB says:


    You refer to Wilshere playing in front of Parker for England successfully, well if you change the name Parker for Song surely you see that Wilshere plays the same role for Arsenal — just ahead of Song — which by chance is exactly where Arteta plays week in and week out.

    Wilshere is not an attacking midfield player, you may wish him to be and I hope your wish comes true but I beleive that Wenger and Capello are right and that is why they play him as a deepish lying midfielder, the Arteta role for simplicity.

  142. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    I`m curious, as i must have missed the comment`s, what did O`Leary say that was bad ?

  143. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    FGG ,
    Close, but no Cigar ! 😦

  144. fatgingergooner says:

    Sorry LB,

    But for one talking so much about positioning, you know that playing as the forward midfielder in a 4-4-2 is totally different to playing as the middle or forward midfielder in a 4-3-3.

    Im not saying that Wilshire is a natural attacking midfielder, what I am saying is that his skill set is much greater than Ramsey, Song or Arteta when it comes to filling all 3 positions. In fact, the closest in the Arsenal squad that comes close to having that ability, surprisingly, IMO, is Diaby.

  145. fatgingergooner says:


    I’m used to losing! Lol if Ronaldo was any good then I wouldve been collecting!!! Lol hes shit! Ha!

  146. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    I was willing that last second free kick to go in, so you could have written a long yessssss ! 🙂

  147. ozgunner says:

    i’m not sure it was all silence forced upon him. Not showing up to our last game as team captain annoyed me the most. He decided the spanish grand prix meant more to him than Arsenal that day.

    You are right though injuries have resulted in players playing out of position. Anderson would be good if he could stay fit, as would the da silva twins. I will just watch on eagerly as they crumble. An injury to rooney wouldn’t go astray either!

  148. fatgingergooner says:

    Cheers GLIC,

    But that means as much as the paper my bet was written on!!!!!! Haha!

    I think I need a new hobby cos I’m shit at betting! Lol

    Tho I think I said somewhere that we would be top 4 before Xmas. I like the way our tough fixtures are spread out compared to last year when we played all the top teams at once

  149. ozgunner says:

    @ Glic

    it’s beyond me how you could. I’m sorry but if i was smalling playing against arsenal i would feel sick to my stomach, i couldn’t celebrate, you would just have to go about your business with a very bitter taste in your mouth!

    Cole is another story though, he’s lower than a snakes belly that bloke. An oxygen thief

  150. fatgingergooner says:

    Man U are going backwards IMO.

    A cruciate injury to a 28/9 year old is career threatening. Rio is done, as is Giggs pretty soon.

    The keeper is going take a season to settle in, their future CB’s are playing out of position. The future FB’s can’t stay fit and the midfield is not good enough at the moment with a struggle to find money to buy what’s needed.
    Add to that the fact that their greatest ever manager will retire as soon as the team starts heading downhill and you can see United dropping off.

  151. Big Raddy says:

    FGG. I did not say that GG deserved a statue, I said he should be allowed to go onto the pitch with the other stalwarts.

  152. Big Raddy says:

    I enjoyed tonight’s game and Barca showed they remain the team to beat.

    FGG.If we finish above MU I will be a happy man!

  153. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Last one before I go to nod off, Gareth Bale is a gooner( according to Theo, they roomed together ) and Harry aswell !, I`d rather dangle my goolies in a pool full of starving Piranha`s ! 😯

  154. TotalArsenal says:

    LB, I watched the classico so only just saw your response. I totally agree with FGG though. For me Wilshere is playmaker potential, wherever he plays. He will direct the game for years to come, once he is fully fit. And the goals will come as well, but initially it will be his assists that will make the difference.

    A few days ago, I sent a post to Peaches/Rasp re our ‘new midfield’ and hopefully it will be published soon and we can continue this debate further 🙂

  155. fatgingergooner says:


    If GG is allowed to be a part of 125 years of this club then why is Cesc seen as such a hate figure?

    GG played boring (all be it successful) football,
    He used the club for financial gain and brought the club down to his level. He then went on to manage our rivals.

    Cesc gave his all in every game he played. Even coming on against Villa (I think) and winning the game in 20 minutes before going off injured.

    At what point does GG become more important than CF?

  156. TotalArsenal says:

    BR, agreed Barca are the team to beat, once again. They have the superior system of football and Mourinho just cannot compete with it, no matter what they spend. For RM, there are probably only two managers who can give them a decent chance to beat Barca: Wenger and Van Gaal, but both are very unlikely to take up that challenge.

  157. fatgingergooner says:

    Oh no TA, does that mean we have to put with one of your posts? Yawn!!!!!

    Hahahahahahahahahaha!!!!!! Only joking!! Lol

    Will look forward to that discussion.

  158. TotalArsenal says:

    HaHa FGG 🙂 If, by any chance, you are suffering from insomnia my post will be the ideal cure!

  159. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi Oz, just wanted to say, well done the other day with the Zorro-Arteta picture. If the forensics business does not work out for you, you can always opt for a creative/marketing kind of career 🙂

  160. fatgingergooner says:

    Lol insomnia, no. Hangover, yes!!!! Lol

    Your blogs keep the sheep at bay TA! Add to that the fact I can’t count past 10 and we are all winners!!!!! Lol

  161. TotalArsenal says:

    FGG, don’t start talking about sheep, will you?! Before you know, we have got GLiC on here again, telling us some tales about his award winning sheep! 🙂

  162. fatgingergooner says:

    Lol TA,

    Thats all we need!!!!

    Did u go to the game TA? How did we perform?

  163. TotalArsenal says:

    No, I didn’t FGG. In fact, I am still to watch the summary on MotD. As my wife ‘allowed’ me to watch the RM-Barca game on Saturday evening, she claimed it was her turn now to watch TV… 🙄

  164. TotalArsenal says:

    FGG, are you planning to go to a game soon?

  165. fatgingergooner says:

    Lol TA,

    I work for sky so I get multiroom free which means she can watch x factor upstairs and I can watch soccer Saturday, Mosconi cup, el classico and amir Khan downstairs with a crate of lager! And she’s agreed to marry me in July! What an idiot!!!!! Lol

    RM-Barca was below par tbh, mainly due to reals tactics.

    I have to say though that from the highlights I have seen, RVP’s goal was nothing without Songs pass. And also JD played okay from what I saw. We slate him when he’s poor but say nothing when he’s good. 3 league games in a row when he’s been solid

  166. fatgingergooner says:


    It is my dream and it will be a regular thing once I have children.

    My only regret in life thus far is that I never went to Highbury. I won’t make the same mistake again.

  167. Gooner In Exile says:

    The point at which GG means more to the club than CF was probably 1971, but also 1987, 89, 91, 92, 93. To understand that you have to have like most experienced the low points from 1980 to 86 (and in truth from about 1973 for most Gooners bar a couple of FA Cups).

    The only reason he left Arsenal was a Harry Redknapp style brown envelope.

  168. TotalArsenal says:

    FGG 🙂 You now know, from TMTH and others, how important it is for a long and happy marriage, that your wife-to-be lets you do your football things. Good to see you have an employer who understands that too!

    Fully agreed on the Song assist – he is one of my favourite players atm. JD will survive at Arsenal – I will check his performance out when I see the summary.

    I really liked the RM-Barca game. It was not a classic but there was plenty to enjoy. I thought Puyol was an absolute beast, and although I think Alves is an idiot, he played a top game as well. Messi’s assist for the first Barca goal was also from another planet!

  169. fatgingergooner says:

    Thats fair GIE, and to be honest it was a response I expected. But Cesc gave his all for the club, as did GG.

    He was a hell of a player for this club and gave his all when he played. The comparison to Nasri just shows how much this club meant to the Spaniard compared to the Frenchman.

    Cesc has said that he will never have a bad word to say about Arsenal, yet when the likes of Wright, Merse and Smith have a dig, that’s fine.

    If we could take him back now I would bite my own arm off!

  170. fatgingergooner says:


    I totally agree.

    For some reason the Spanish league doesn’t Care that Puyol is 88 years old!!!!

    If he was over her then the likes of Carroll would murder him!!!! Lol

    The fact that RVP record is better than Messi this year just shows how good RvP is.

    My colleague said that RvP is not even in the top 5 players in the world at the moment and that Silva and Aguero are better. He’s just got a job at Sky Sports!

    Am I still on crack!?

  171. TotalArsenal says:

    Night FGG, and others.

  172. TotalArsenal says:

    FGG, RvP is top class and this will be the year in which he’ll proof it once and for all. ‘Speak’ to you tomorrow again.

  173. Brigham says:

    TA, thank you for that montage and it reminds me of some of our best and beautiful goals and Berkamp’s goal against Newcastle in 2002 will live in my memory forever.

  174. I can’t sleep and feel hungover already.
    George Graham won trophies as a player and a manager for Arsenal. He couldn’t possibly have a statue due to the circumstances that he left in. At the time I suspect that he was acting like a lot of football people did. Brian Clough was the same and he’s regarded as a legend (even though he eventually took Forest down) cesc however spent six years honing his skills with us then fucked off back to boyhood club a much better player than when he left them and for peanuts. personally I have no respect for him. I have much better feelings for Eboue. He’s a gooner. cesc isn’t. I hope madrid win the league and we get a chance to have those catalans eleven v eleven over two matches. We’ll do them this time.

  175. Rob Lucci says:

    I have a serious question that I want to ask.

    AS a CB, and most of the time I dont have a cover in front of me since the DM is always joining the attack and dont track back. I always have to face a four against two situation. So, my question is, when an opposition player maybe five to two yards in front of you, do you close him down before he can receive the ball, or do you need to drop deep? If I closed him down I will leave a space behind me, but if I drop deep, he will have a lot of time to shoot or pass it to the wingers, which both will resulted in goal.

  176. RockyLives says:

    I’m not anti-Cesc, but as Arsenal legends go you can’t mention him in the same breath as GG.

    Although George’s Arsenal career finished under a cloud, you have to remember:

    Key part of the 1971 Double Side.

    1987 – first trophy after years of not even being competitive (League Cup).

    1989 – first league title for 18 years and probably the greatest night in most Gooners’ lives.

    1991 – an almost-Invincible season (only one defeat) and another league title.

    1993 – first club to do the league cup and FA cup Double.

    1994 – European Cup Winners Cup.

    You said GG gave us boring football. You can’t have watched the team circa 1989-91, with Rocky Rocastle, Paul Merson, Paul Davis, Micky Thomas, Ian Wright, Anders Limpar etc. They played brilliant, skilful, attacking football on the foundation of a rock solid defence.

    Cesc gave us years of watching his sublime skills, but in his time with the club we won absolutely nothing.

    There really is no comparison.

  177. RockyLives says:

    I think you’re being a tad harsh on Cesc but I get where you’re coming from.

    When GG did the brown envelope shuffle he was doing what every other PL manager was engaged in at the time. He ‘fessed up after being told that a lot of other managers were all going to be busted as well, and that ether would be a big stink which would blow over with the EPL vowing to change its tactics.

    Instead he got used as a scapegoat for the whole thing, which was then brushed under the carpet.

    I’m not condoning it, but every manager was doing it back then and he was harshly dealt with by being singled out.

    It was also generally accepted at the time that George would not have been fired if we hand’t turned into such a crap team during the last couple of years of his tenure. The club was glad to have an excuse to boot him out.

  178. ozgunner says:

    @ TA

    haha cheers, glad you liked it, sometimes i have too much time on my hands

    @ Rob

    I am nowhere near qualified to answer your question (the likes of GiE and co would be alot better as they are good coaches) but as someone whose played alot of football and aussie rules football in my short time i’ll give it a crack. Personally i liked to close him down before he receives the ball (thats only because i’m quite quick), because then if i stuffed it i’d have the speed to recover. I think your question is thus dependant on speed, if your BFG you wait and time a tackle perfectly with correct technique. If your kozza you can go for it straight away (something he got caught out on a few times last season but has honed expertly this season). Santos for me does it perfectly

  179. ozgunner says:

    @ TA
    i don’t think GLIC can talk about his award winning sheep, as he most likely enjoyed a lamb chop or two when going through his werewolf stage.

    also known as WLIC!

  180. evonne says:

    Gary Linekar was funny this morning – Black week, 3 out of Europe – Manchester City, Manchester United and finally David Cameron 🙂

    Morning all

  181. evonne says:

    Peaches – I was right about Chas publishing quality video of the wonder goal. And you were right about the quality of the goal, dear oh dear oh dear, even TH14 looked stunned

  182. evonne says:

    Morning Evonne – did you see Szczesny kissing RvP’s boots? Yes I have

  183. Gooner In Exile says:

    Rob in answer to your question it depends on a lot of factors.

    If the opposition are playing two up front and player receiving is midfielder I suggest you stick with your man. If you commit towards midfielder you make it an easy pass (if he is in possession and facing goal)

    If the player is one of the forwards and he is receiving the ball back to goal I’d suggest you try and get the ball on the half turn. That is you time your arrival to nick the ball when he starts to turn.

    Finally I’d say make sure your DM is aware of the problems by way of a bloody good bollocking.

    Defending is all about a disciplined line organisation and denying space.

    I used to have my defence condense the play as much as possible but as the opposition progresses we would drop in ten yard increments. (I would just scream “Drop” then ” Hold”).

    It was interesting to see our defensive line has become deeper. Merts seems to sweep and read whilst Kos or Verm attack the ball.

  184. Gooner In Exile says:

    Morning all.

    Oh to oh to be oh to be a Gooner!

  185. Gooner In Exile says:

    Just watched MotD again anyone remember last year when people insisted Wenger is an egotistical maniac?

    “I don’t need a statue I just want to do well for my club”

    God I love Arsene. Not only has he been a great manager but he has been loyal, and clearly loves the club as much as any of those past heroes on the pitch yesterday.

    Be good too see some pics of post match stuff would love to know if the legends there had a big meal with the current team.

  186. evonne says:

    GiE – I saw that bit with AW too. But he was flirting with the camera, with that little smile of his – ‘I don’t need a statue’ 🙂

    I love him too

    I am sure they had some celebrations after the game; one way to find out is to check if anyone was twitting between 6 and 9pm ? Especially Chesny, he always seems to have plenty to say, must be a polish trait

  187. Red Arse says:

    Morning Guys, 🙂

    Well said GIE, I have just watched MoTD too and for a change all was sweetness and light, and Robin’s goal looked ace from any angle!

    I have ALWAYS thought AW was special, like most on AA, and nothing will ever change my mind about that – either his abilities as a manager or his decency as a man! 🙂

  188. chas says:

    There already is a bust of AW.

  189. pat says:

    Yeeee haaa!!!! RVP! RVP! RVP! Just awesome…. got to be one of the best goals I have seen him score. And Songinho gets another assist – Cesc would have been proud to put his name on that….

  190. evonne says:

    Do we want Shitty to win tomorrow? And Stoke today, of course?

  191. Gooner In Exile says:

    Evonne Stoke today is a no brainer.

    I guess the best result for us tomorrow is a draw? Pegging back City whilst also keeping Chavs fifth.

    Then when we beat City away we will only be 5 points behind City and comfortable in 4th maybe even 3rd if the Orcs do their job.

    On ManUre I hope Mick McCarthy adopts same strategy at Emirates as he did at OT yesterday. In his own words he had two options one to go for it or two to sit and defend. He chose the former. Why? I’ve said many times before that teams who come to the Emirates with two banks of five don’t play the same way at OT. I just don’t understand it.

  192. chas says:

    If the chavs get a point tomorrow, they’ll go back above us with a GD better by 6.

  193. chas says:

    I don’t remember Leighton Baines being booked.

    Poise grace and elegance


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