Reality check needed after Norwich defeat.

A lot has already been discussed about our game at Norwich but there are still many factors to ponder.

We kicked off after all of our main rivals had played and results should have given the team the incentive to grab three points against a bottom of the table side who had conceded nine goals in their last two matches.

We are, by now, used to this Arsenal team. Consistency, regardless of whoever we play, has been missing for quite a few seasons, and we weren’t disappointed. That was one of the worst team performances I have seen for many a season. People will say that it would have been different if  it were not for the fact that the in form Gibbs as well as super sub Walcott were out injured, but if we are a club that has genuine aspirations to winning the title or at least being in the mix, it has vanished.

RVP nearly single handedly got us into third last season with assists and goals (amounting to 27 points) and of course a helping hand from the Albion keeper Fullop. The warning signs were there.

I think it really is time for a reality check. We have now amassed only 50% of the points available after eight games – and has Bould really improved our defence? We have now conceded first in our last four EPL games, therefore having to chase the game each time. We were at sixes and sevens in defence, a better team than Norwich would have added to their tally.

All clubs have injuries but when you look at our squad, Diaby, Gibbs and Rosicky in particular have a history of injuries and IMO our squad just isn’t strong enough.

For the first time,  I place the blame on Arsene Wenger’s shoulders. Can he really motivate these players anymore? I am beginning to have my doubts.

He says we have to regroup for the Schalke game, but even if we eventually get out of our group as winners or runners up, can anyone realistically see us progressing further?

My main beef has been the same for a few seasons and that is the goalkeeper’s position. Apparently our Pole in Goal has been carrying an injury since the end of last season. Fabianski was shot two seasons ago and I will not argue that Mannone is a good third choice keeper. How many top clubs have to play their third choice keeper as the only option? Surely we need experienced cover for our number one, but Wenger appears to be blind to that. Apparently he tried to sign Schwarzer last season and when that didn’t happen, he appeared not to pursue any other options.

I really think we will struggle to get top 4 this season without an upturn in form and commitment by some of the players and investment in January.

A lot will be expected from Wilshere but I hope he isn’t played until he is 100% fit (as previously players have been selected then afterwards it has become known that they were carrying a knock – go back only to Saturday and Podolski was one who played under those very same conditions)

Santi is a great player but can be marshalled out of a game as was the case against Chelsea, or if he is off form we have no one else to pick up the reigns.

I am not asking for Wenger to go. Even if he did (in theory), nothing would change in the Boardroom in terms of what many would consider releasing REASONABLE sums for player acquisitions.

Look at our fixture list for November and the increasing number of injuries – it does not bode well. Chamakh is obviously out of favour as we saw the young German lad Gnabry thrown on to try and rescue a point . Is that the squad of a club with top four ambitions?

I am angry, upset, but mainly disappointed in the performance collectively, and only hope that things don’t get worse……..but I won’t hold my breath. We have a range of testing conundrums on our hands.

In the immortal words of Rocky…I will get my coat  🙂

Written by kelsey

178 Responses to Reality check needed after Norwich defeat.

  1. Excellent post Jack.We need to step up to the plate in our next few games, or the consequences for the rest of the season could be disasterous.

  2. Red Arse says:


    I always enjoy your too infrequent Posts, and this one is no exception! 🙂

    You speak from the heart like a true fan, and I would think it to be risible should anyone take offence and not see this as a fair and balanced opinion of a disappointed fan concerned for the welfare of his team.

    There are many shades of grey and I wholeheartedly agree with some of your stated views and perhaps slightly less so with others, but overall you raise a number of interesting and salient points for consideration.

    Well done, sir! 🙂

  3. Red Arse says:


    It was wrong of me to include a reference to you in my retort to that weedonald fellow.

    I am admittedly defensive about AA and many of the other fine and mild mannered bloggers on here, so the reply to your comment seemed harsher out of context than I intended. Apologies. 🙂

  4. LB says:

    Good heart felt post Kelsey.

    I share you frustration but not all of your criticism. It is not the first time that you have expressed this concern about the goalkeeping situation but I cannot see how ypu expect that to work in practice. Having an experienced keeper sat on the bench for what would be the best part of a season. Who has that?

    I think Knarby might surprise you; he may only be 17 but so what, this was not quite the desperate measure that you suggest (if I have understood you correctly) this kid was superb in the CC against Coventry and deserved his chance. I thought the young German added the only spark to what looked like a very uninspired team.

  5. Gooner In Exile says:

    Good morning Kelsey, I’m worried that you might have held back 🙂

    I disagree on the point of the keeper….but that’s because I look at the others and asked is anyone else well placed in their 3rd choice?

    City …. Hart, Pantimilliom, Wright
    Liverpool ….. Reina, Jones, Doni
    United…..De Gea, Lindegard, Amos
    Chelsea…..Cech, Turnbull, Hilario
    Spuds…..Friedel, Lloris, Gomez, Cudicini

    The difference is that our No1 is not yet at the status of our competitors, but of we were to drop him we risk him swanning off. As for cover I think it’s very hard to buy the experience we would like, keepers want to play, it’s te one position where you don’t get subbed, if you’re first choice you play, if you’re second you warm te bench, it takes a lot of money to keep you on the bench if you’re good enough to play elsewhere, look at the likes of Foster at WBA he didn’t want to play second fiddle, neither do many others.

    It’s the defence in front that can help the reserve keeper come through games like these, and unfortunately we are too often short in this regard. I’m sure we remember when Adams and co had to play in front of Manninger in Seaman’s latter years, after a couple of blips Adams decided that he would tell young Alex when the ball was his, the rest of the time he should stay on his line and let them deal with it.

    As for the rest of your post there is not a great deal to disagree with, but as discussed many times before Arsene is a dreamer and maybe he hopes that one day his team will be fit again.

    Should we raise questions about our medical team and staff though? Did we suffer such injuries when we had Gary Lewin at pitch side and the now England doctor in the stands? The FA nicked our medical team, and we have struggled since.

    Or is it the training, do we need to toughen up? There were comments from Milner that Clichy had to get used to the physicality of City’s training sessions (tackles and such) is that why we get injured…play for 5 days a week without impact and the slightest knock (Ox on Saturday) puts us out?

    More questions than answers….

  6. Gooner In Exile says:

    LB agree on Gnabry I was impressed with the few glimpses we saw of te young man. Is it because he is more a wide man that we put him on the bench rather than Eisfield?

  7. glic says:

    Fine post Kelsey
    I think Saturdays result hit us all hard as none of us saw it coming, we were all in “take it for granted” expectancy, the team aswell !.
    Like you, I always have my feet firmly on the ground and agree this is going to be a tough year for CL qualification, lets face it though we have had a brilliant 15 years of CL, when we probably against all odds ( stadium move, certain rich bastards etc ) weren`t expected to and one day it will come to an end. Is this the year ?.
    You only have to look at the widgets, for example, from game 8 to game 33 last year, (apart from games 20,21,and 22) we had a fantastic run and we will need to go some to match it !
    In the results compared, I make it we are 2 points down, so alls not rosey !.
    However, in the words of a Spud who would have walked all the way to Highbury if we had wanted to sign him, ” it`s a funny old game ” and I think that result will hopefully be one almighty kick up the backside for us !.

  8. Morning all. Little to disagree with there Kelsey and well said too. It’s becoming a pattern of our play that we lose to the so called lesser teams quite regularly now.

    GiE – I don’t think Gary Lewin’s departure has changed things much, IMHO we were similarly injury prone when he was still with us.

    I’m a bit fearful for the Schalke game now….ulp ! 😦

  9. I make it the same Glic, Rasp hasn’t updated my projection widget, but maybe thats for sanity as it predicts Spuds will finish 4th, must go and revisit my calculation!

  10. chas says:

    Sorry kelsey, I didn’t get past bsr single-handedly getting us into 3rd (with the help of the Baggies keeper).

    Here’s a video to lift the spirits.

  11. kelsey says:


    I don’t think we will ever agree on the keeper situation. United rotate quite often and even Spurs have that option.
    We should have addressed this problem a few seasons back. our pole has time on his hands. I know you are a keeper by trade 😉 but have you noticed how often our number one goes feet first,legs apart when a fifty fifty ball with the on coming attacker threatens a goal.maybe that accounts for his ankle injury.

  12. kelsey says:

    not quite with you. i said RVP’s goals and assists amounted to us gaining 27 points.

  13. TotalArsenal says:

    Good, say-it-as-it-is post Kelsey! 🙂

    Totally agree on the GK situation. Having two up and coming and relatively inexperienced GK at a top team like Arsenal does not work. I like Mannone and I like Szczesny: both could grow into top GK’s, but they could also fail. I don’t think it is that hard to find a PL-experienced, early to mid-thirties goalkeeper as our nr2 behind Szczesny, who can take over from the Pole in case of injury, suspension or lack of form, and accepts that he will often sit on the bench. Who would not want to finish their career at a club like Arsenal?

    Re the Norwich game. Still gutted with the lack of cohesion throughout the team and lack of bite up-front. But it was just a game. Arsenal played fantastically in recent away games and one rat floating in the sea does not mean the ship is about to sink. I agree with you we have a range of testing games ahead and I am sure this team has all that it takes to go on a good run.

    Once we have sorted out the lynchpin midfield position, we will look a transformed team: bring on Jack and/or Abou! 🙂

  14. Great post Kelsey
    & Great follow up GIE….
    Have to admit Saturdays poor showing knocked me for six, i thought the taking for granted thing was becoming a thing of the past.
    Complacency has been our Achilles heel too often now and even new faces like Arteta are picking up the habit – ‘We’re really down because we expected to win the game’
    Hell even Wenger post match called it an “easy” game.
    70% possession would normally mean 15+ chances, we only had about 3 or 4 chances Saturday? why?
    If chances aint happening then we should be shooting from distance, why aren’t we?
    Maybe there’s a fundamental flaw in our style, Manu don’t play with this intricacy but still manage many chances.
    As for GK? well last season many of us banged on about signing a decent no2, a veteran, who is in his last couple of seasons, but who ever listens to us.

  15. brian says:

    Cannot comment too much on the Norwich game because I could not bear to watch and switched off after 10 minutes.It was so obvious even at that stage that we were just going to keep the ball for the sake of it with no penetration and as my Arsenal glass is currently always half empty I couldn’t face any more.It makes my blood boil when I read afterwards we had(as usual)approaching 70% possession with (as usual)just a couple of shots on target.I for one am sick to the back teeth of this slow possession football with no end product(this was not a one off)and it drives me crazy that Wenger persists with it.Give me 50% possession,the right attitude and a scruffy 1-0 win and I’ll take it every time.
    Although I have from time to time been among his frustrated critics ,it’s games like this that bring home to me the value of Walcott who at least can inject some pace,drive and directness and is so often central to most things when we play well.

  16. yeah yeah yeah
    yaddah yaddah yaddah

    Dear Arsenal supporter,

    We gave a disappointing performance against Norwich on Saturday.

    I felt that we lacked a bit of sharpness throughout the game. We tried to get into our rhythm after 20 minutes but we missed what makes you successful at the top level – complete focus.

    We certainly had a lot of the ball but ultimately we did not create much with that possession. It was an illusionary domination.

    The attitude of my players has been excellent this season but Saturday was not at the level that we have produced until now. It was the first time this season that we were way below par.

    Norwich were strong defensively, they were focused, committed and sharper than us. Now we have to put that performance behind us, realise that was not good enough and respond against Schalke on Wednesday.

    I hope Saturday’s result will have a positive impact on the squad. It was a shock to the system, but you have to give credit to Norwich as well. They played well, they were completely committed and they deserved the win.

    The Premier League is the Premier League. If you are not ready for the fight then you will always have bad surprises.

    Jack Wilshere was back in the squad for Saturday but I decided not to bring him on. We have to be conscious he has not played for 14 months. I would have brought him on if the game had allowed it but it was too intense. He will play on Monday with the under-21s and then we will see where we go from there.

    Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain did come on at Norwich but he got a kick on his hip almost straight away. He will be out for Wednesday but it is not a long-term problem. I don’t think Kieran Gibbs or Theo Walcott will be ready to face Schalke either.

    Thanks for your support.

    Arsène Wenger “

  17. Morning all

    Thanks for the post kelsey, I know your concerns about the goalkeeping position and it seems today you are in good company with both arseblog and ACLF highlighting their own (similar) opinions on this problem.

    I have always felt sorry for the keeper when the defence in front of him puts him at risk and so although I felt Mannone should have done better ie pushing the first shot further away the poor defending as a team got them into that position in the first place.

    However, we are an attack minded team and once going behind should have worked our socks off to get back on level terms and we didn’t. How do you instill that mindset into your team, surely as professional footballers it in their DNA to be competetive?

  18. Humdinga of a row going on on twitter between queen of suburbia and adrian durham

  19. kelsey says:

    Queen of Suburbia. Whatever happened to her. last i hearsd she was on LG then A regular on ACLF and then for a short while back on LG.

  20. Do you know how to get on twitter kelsey?

  21. Gooner In Exile says:

    Kelsey, the starfish approach to the one on one adopted by Szczesny is a direct copy of Schmeichel, both are similarly athletic/agile, altho Schmeichel had a bit more meat on his bones.

    I preferred Seaman’s smothering approach but that’s because I watched him and copied him (Lukic before him was similar).

    As for whether it contributed to his ankle injury I don’t think so, he turned his ankle landing from the collision with Jenkinson which left him off balance.

    I think last season he was carrying the shoulder injury, and that contributed to the way he was going forward to clutch the ball rather than a long barrier approach, difficult to explain without diagrams and pictures.

  22. I’ve had followers asking for Kelseys twitter tag this morning, his views were well received.
    Thanks for the heads up Peaches On Durhams argument, my tweet app was not picking it up.

  23. kelsey says:

    I have an account on twitter…robins big toe …but never used it., and don’t know how to log on anymore.

  24. richie says:

    I can sympathise with Kelsey but I can’t agree. If comparisons have to be made with our traditional top 4 rivals I firmly believe our current squad stands up to scrutiny. We all know (Kelsey possibly more than most) our clubs financial situation. Unlike many would have us believe we aren’t flush with cash, the shareholders haven’t been given large dividends pay outs and Kroenke hasn’t been pocketing what we earn. We are on a reasonably firm financial setting because we’ve bought players for little and sold for a lot, mainly Arsene Wengers doing. Looking at our current squad I think it’s the strongest we’ve had in quite a while. Possibly the GK situation could be strengthened with Fab’s going and the addition of a new (read old experienced) number two. That said I like the balance of this team far more than last seasons.

    Having said the above now the obvious question; so why did we play so badly against the canaries? Well I haven’t checked the previous stats, but I have something lurking in the back of my mind that whenever our squad members return from International duty and I do believe we had 14 squad members away serving their countries we don’t do well. I’ve never been able to put my finger on what goes on during international duty that always seems to leave our players looking both jaded and lethargic? If anyone can throw any light into that darkened corner I’d be most grateful. However that is always the impression I’m given post international breaks.
    Next our football style is all about fast movement of the ball, which is why teams have been known to cut up their pitches before we play them or in the case of Milan waterlog the outsides with the aim of disrupting our fast passing game.

    Norwich let us have the ball for long periods and they didn’t wear themselves out ball chasing instead their two banks of 4 stood close and firm, and invited us to attempt to get by them. For credit where it’s due, as much as we played badly Norwich played well. That was possibly their best outing in the prem this season. Faced with a massed defence as earlier we had been against Sunderland some creative spark or a little bit of individual genius is called for which is possibly why the ball kept ending up in front of Santi (he is arguably our most creative) but he was consistently tightly marked and often doubled up on. Carzorla apart none of our team had anything to crow about, not only was our passing not crisp but our player’s movement off the ball was weak in the extremis. This lead to the old chestnut, lack of penetration! It was all foreplay side to side back and forth, round and round. The formation didn’t help as players yet again seemed to encroach on each others territory. Anyway one bad loss isn’t the end of the storey, but we can’t let that type of performance continue can we Arsene?

    Which brings up Kelsey’s final blockbuster can Arsene still be relied upon to motivate this team? Its not something I’ve really ever considered because all those who player’s who’ve played for him seem to hold him in quite genuine affection and want to play well for him, not neccessarily, the club.

  25. MickyDidIt89 says:

    My Dear Kelsey,
    What a polite, gentle amd mild mannered Gentleman you are. There was I expecting something genuinely angry, rather than a series of astute, accurate and well made points.
    Take a bow 🙂

  26. MickyDidIt89 says:

    And I don’t mean the sort that comes with arrows 🙂

  27. kelsey says:

    can’t have everyone agreeing with me, and to tell you the truth i didn’t expect so much support already.

    I did in fact make the point you made about Santi yesterday.
    With regards to buying and then selling at a huge profit that was true in the past but not now.

    One has to include wages and ours have gone up alarmingly.
    chamakh may have been free but he is on wages. if we sell Arshavin we would lose on fee paid and wages over the last few years. Walcott stands us in at 12 million + plus wages again. squilllaccii we will lose if sold and the same applies to Bedntner,Fabianski, denilson ( have I forgotten anyone)

    I said in the post a reasonable sum could be allotted to strengthn the team.
    it is a catch 22 situation.We get young players,and pay them well basically on’s a fine balancing act.

  28. Rasp says:

    Thanks kelsey, we know that when we hear your thoughts they are genuine, carefully considered and from the heart.

    I find myself looking to play devil’s advocate even when I read something with which I agree …. obtuse, moi? 😕

    I agree Mannone is now looking shaky and it was clear that Fab2 wanted out so maybe we should have invested in a mature 2nd choice keeper aws insurance. My hindsight gene tells me that would have been a good idea.

    Why our players find it hard to change gear / lift themselves / play with urgency etc etc etc I really cannot fathom. We now have SB in the dugout presumably offering a different type of presence to AW and yet the same frailty in focus against ‘lesser teams’ is still there.

    GiE, apologies it took so long but I have updated your widget now. Is the prediction that Arsenal will be 5th and pool 6th or are they just listed as they form the top 6 contenders?

  29. Rasp says:

    On another note. If Gibbs is not fit and Sagna is ready, we should try Sagna at LB and keep Jenkinson at RB.

  30. TotalArsenal says:

    Richie, that is a fine comment @11.51 and it is not even night time! 🙂

  31. Rasp says:

    Hi TA, I agree richie makes some very good points and it had also occurred to me that we tend to underperform after internationals …… more research required, over to you GN5 😉

    I think Norwich adopted the tried and tested methodology. Let Arsenal have possession in their own half and the centre of the park, keep a disciplined 2 banks of four, press them across the pitch and when they run out of ideas and give the ball away, attack them at pace on the break and try to win free kicks or corners if you can’t get through on goal.

  32. glic says:

    I agree with your 12:12pm Rasp .

  33. richie says:

    @TA Hi my friend hows you? Its worse than that its after 12:30 and I’ve not even had a coffee. I’ve typed that up and as my eye’s aren’t fully open they are mearly slits I thought it might’ve come out in Chinese (careful all this is not a racist comment) my eye’s are slits until coffee miraculously opens them. I wouldn’t mind but I’ve been up since 06:30.


    Thank you oh Bouffanted one. An excellent and well reasoned post, highlighting concerns we generaly all share on the state of the team.

    But i wouldnt be me if i didnt pick on you….err i mean pick on some of the points i dont agree with. hahaha.

    I dont share the concerns over the keepers. We have three good ones, but unfortunitly have been unlucky with injuries. I have complete faith in our big Pole, and like his confidence and spirit.

    Fourt spot is nailed on. Its disapointing that we may not chalange for the league this year but with the exception of the top 3 we are better than the rest by some distance.

    Arsene wenger is the right man to lead the club forward. If he can not motivate players no one can.

    Abd finaly, just a quick word on the defence. We have improved this year. i think the stats show we along with chelsea have conceded the fewest goals this season. We look much more balanced and defend better as a team, but work is still required on set pieces etc.

  35. richie says:

    @RA 9:59 no worries I’m defensive of this blog too! There are plenty of blogs of type aimed at the neaderthals that amazingly are still amongst us, good blogs of this type are rare indeed we must all defend them.

  36. Big Raddy says:

    Kelsey. Very enjoyable read and nothing one can really take exception to. We have both been asking for an experienced bench GK for a few seasons now 🙂

    I think there should be a points adjustment at season’s end. We should be given an extra 9 points for having to play our 3rd choice GK, because that is what he will cost us.

    The injury situation is just So Arsenal. Season after season we have these difficulties but I do believe we have enough in the squad to cover. Coquelin will become a very useful player and when TR returns in a few weeks we will have a noter player capable of creating something special (plus JW, of course)

  37. richie says:

    @Kelsey @12:02 then you disagree with the swiss rambler? He says we are only in real profit from player sales.

  38. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi Rasp,

    I reckon there is a big difference in terms of having a home or an away game after the international break for the top teams. I am convinced that the top teams drop a lot of points in the away games they have to play after the international break.

    Both the Chavs and the Northern Oilers have done very well this weekend in my view: three very important points for them. Unfortunately, Arsenal did not have the same focus and quality needed to do the same. 😦

  39. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi Richie 🙂

    All is well, thanks. Throw some espressos down your neck and write more stuff: you obviously had a lot of time to think over the last few months, so let it all hang out with us! 😛

  40. kelsey says:

    No I don’t disagree with the Swiss Ramble, riichie and in fact RVP’s and Songs transfer will show in the next accounts less our purchases.

    I am talking about what is commonly known as deadwood players still on the books..

    Two more years,new shirt deal and we start to improve. If we miss CL this season that’s about 30 million lost in revenue, and harder to get quality players to join if needed.

    Big money transfers don’t always work out as we all know,but a stronger squad to rotate is needed IMO.

    Off for lunch.

  41. Gooner In Exile says:

    Hi Rasp, the only reason Liverpool were in the widget was up until last year they were one of the traditional contenders.

    I didn’t include Toon last year despite their good start, if I get time I’ll see if I can do it for the whole league.

  42. Gooner In Exile says:

    Richie I think 11/12 was the first set of financials for a while where we were in profit before revenue from Nasri, Cesc and Clichy sales. £24m ordinary profit (before player trading), less £7m of tax and £13m of finance charges. (And only £2.5m was property profits).

    I think we are well set now going forward provided we can improve sponsorship deals (kit, stadium etc).

  43. Rasp says:

    Ok thanks GiE, maybe we should just show the predicted position at the end of the season and a +/- figure that explains the swing?

  44. LB says:

    I do not know how Twitter works and puropsely want to keep it that way. But I am so nosey as to what Queen of Suburbia is saying to Durham, she is one tough cookie, there is bound to be blood.

    Peaches, can you copy and paste some of it?

  45. Gooner In Exile says:

  46. goonerjake says:

    great post k,

    I am still annoyed at the display at norwich. For me Wenger does have blind spots as follows:
    GERVINHO – for me he is not good enough yet he still plays all the time…. what does wenger see in him, reminds me of how Denilson always seemed to play… i used to suspect that denilson was really wengers long lost son or something, how else could he be a starter.
    70 MIN RULE – is it just me or does wenger never make substitions (unforced of course) before 70 mins? CHANGE THE GAME WENGER EVEN AT HALF TIME IF NEEDED !!!!!! AAARRRGGGGGHH!
    GOALKEEPERS – We need one and you dont see it. AARRGGHH

    But like K, i dont want to see him go.

    Still annoyed

  47. Gooner In Exile says:

    It wasn’t that bad LB, Durham resorted “But you pay the highest ticket prices, you should demand more” which
    a) resulted in me wading in
    b) is losing the argument


    Hi Richie

    ThIs is one of my pet hates but i will give you an example that expalins the situation

    Footballing Turnover £200 million
    Footballing costs £180 million

    Footballing profit £20 million

    Now over time, that will materialise into £20 million cash into the clubs bank account. Now for the slightly tricky part. Say the club has £150 million of players, based on there vaule, in the company accounts. It is accounting policy to “depreciate” this £150 million because players contracts run down and by the end of there contracts the players are worth nothing. Now say arsenals policy is to depreciate at 20%

    £150 million x 20% = £30 million depreciation

    Then you will have:

    Footballing profit £20 million
    less Depreciation £30 million

    = £10 million loss

    This dosnt mean to say that the club needs to find £10 million tommorow to keep the wolves from the door. They have £20 million extra cash remember. The nasty bit is that if we let all players run down there contracts, on paper we will ket assets worth £150 depreciate and only have £100 million in the bank to aquire replacements.

    Now for the “real life” part. The club depreciates a players vaule to a very small amount and then sells him with one year left on his contract. The vaule after depreciation is say £5 million but the club sells him for £20 million, that is £15 million profit.

    Arsenal do not make “real” losses before transfers. They have at times, like the most recent accounts, made “Accounting losses before transfers”

    We are in a very healthy position and there is nothing to worry about.

  49. Gooner In Exile says:

    This may or may not give everything you want LB

  50. Gooner In Exile says:

    There’s a lot more than that LB I’ll see if I can get it on here some other way.

  51. goonerjake says:

    I read a story the other day that arsenal are going to attempt to build a tower block for students near the emirates.
    Now 1) have i read the story right and it indeed arsenal funding the project ? (if so) 2) where is the money coming from?, a different part of the arsenal ‘company’ or is the ‘football bussiness’ funding it? (if yes) 3) should nt any extra money be ploughed into the team and not building housing for students? are we not at heart a football club?

  52. Red Arse says:


    If you double click on the picture of QueenofSuburbia in GIE’s dooflung @ 1:45, it will take you straight into her tweets on twitter.

    She lives in Belgium now, I understand!

  53. richie says:

    Kelsey I agree with the dead wood issue but maybe I’m too naive in the past I’ve said out the likes of Chamakh & Squillaci but if they still have a contract the only way is to pay it up especially as no transfer can be arrangedif no transfer can be arranged. Old Moronho at Real has that same problem with Carvalho he won’t leave because he’s getting paid so well for not playing. I sympathise with Arsene too because with one week of the window closing he took a chance on a Spanish International defender when he knew we were losing both Gallas & Sol. Gaining Chamakh for free was o.k. but giving him such a long term was a mistake obviously.

  54. glic says:

    GIE @1:45pm
    Last sentence, ” If money bring us that then keep spending “, Is that Durham saying that ?, using the word, ” us “, told you he is a closet gooner !. Whose the only team we get upset about losing ?…..Arsenal……Who upsets Durham when they lose and even more than the “Posh ” ?…..Arsenal ! hahaha

  55. richie says:

    @TMHC I agree we are in a good place but we won’t be making a profit unless we sell players, seems to be the bottom line, unless we dramatically grow the business. I like our prudence but Arse FC as a business needs to grow!

  56. richie says:

    Sorry Terry I said Hair Cut not transplant

  57. richie says:


  58. Rasp says:

    Jack WIlshere, Emmanuel Frimpong and Bacary Sagna all played the full 90 minutes in the under 21 game today so none are going to feature against Schalke. Eisfeld scored both our goals but is not included in our CL squad.


    richie, i agree totaly about growing the business. The problem is, and its not confined to Arsenal but applys to all clubs who are self susstaining, historicly, turnover growth is taken by the players in the form of wages.

    I feel the future for Arsenal is always to have a breakeven transfer policy, but future growth will allow us to be more competitive with wages.

  60. richie says:

    GIE @1:25 I can see we are quite well set for the future but I’m trying to expound the myth put about by many that we are really a rich club but won’t spend any money. We are only well set up for the years to come because we’ve been prudent.

  61. evonne says:

    Good post Kelsey, and much needed. I don’t advocate wallowing in self-pity, but pink sunglasses are out of favour too.

    About the training routine – Szczesny’s girlfriend told me that he goes to work before 9am and finishes about 2pm, sometimes there are longer sessions and he works till 5pm. I was genuinly surprised, I thought they would start earlier and work for longer. Not necessarily all the time on the pitch, but I am sure there is plenty ground to be covered in the classroom and gym.

  62. RockyLives says:

    Fine write up Kelsey.
    And well done Peaches for yesterday’s match report, which can’t have been easy.

    I happen to agree with you about the GK position. I wish we would buy a top flight ‘keeper who is no younger than 26/27.

    Both Mannone and Szcz are promising young players, but they should be back ups to an experienced No 1. If it means someone like Szcz ups sticks and leaves, then so be it. He hasn’t done enough yet to demonstrate that he deserves the No 1 spot at Arsenal (or at international level).

    As for the reasons for our more general malaise on Saturday… I’m still pondering, but when you said “That was one of the worst team performances I have seen for many a season” I was nodding in 100% agreement. In fact I think it was the worst performance I have ever seen under Wenger, with no redeeming qualities.

  63. evonne says:

    Thanks Rocky, I thought that too, but was afraid to say it in case the happy clappy brigade remind me of dozens of games I blanked out

  64. Rasp says:

    Does anyone know if Theo is fit for Wednesday?

    Hi Rocky 🙂 Hi Evonne 🙂

  65. RockyLives says:

    Apparently he’s still out. But I can’t remember where I read that.

  66. RockyLives says:

    Hello Evonne 🙂
    I’ve stopped sulking now 🙂

  67. evonne says:

    would you like a medal Rocky 🙂

    i am exploring Twitter

  68. Rasp says:

    chas, your vid @ 10:43 is fantastic, a great antidote to the football blues – thanks

  69. RockyLives says:

    In fact I read it in Jonathan’s reprinting of AW’s letter above!

  70. Rasp says:

    OK thanks Rocky, looks like we’ll field pretty much the same team against Schalke as Norwich then – we can only hope for a more determined and cohesive performance.

  71. RockyLives says:

    Yes please!
    Will you pin it on me?

  72. RockyLives says:

    Do you think there was a fishing net caught round our team at Norwich? Some of those nets are made of very fine thread and are almost invisible to the naked eye…

  73. jnyc says:

    Great post kelsey, i wont blame the defense, it still looks good to me. I wont even blame mannone, because u have to expect a mistake like that occasionally. Im just not happy that we cant find away against the bus parking teams. Other top teams deal with the same problem and find ways to overcome it more than we do. They are pulling away from us again.

  74. kelsey says:

    Might not be such a bad thing rasp. A good kick up 11 backsides or a warning “you are benched”. got a gut feeling Arshavin will feature, he likes European home games.

  75. kelsey says:

    Not the greatest day for hits ( so far) but thanks so much for all the comments which on the whole seem generally to be in agreement with me and are of the highest quality.

    I wrote the post in ten minutes to prove i could distract myself from my poor ailing daughter’s illness. Your kind words are a blessing.

  76. Rasp says:

    Good point kelsey – a chance to redeem themselves perhaps.

  77. evonne says:

    Rocky – that depends where you’d want it 🙂

  78. Big Raddy says:

    RL.4.44 At last someone has started to examine the real reasons behind such a s poor performance.

    Rumour abounds that there were traces of Mogadon found in the lunch served by Delia.

    Jenks didn’t partake preferring the Full English on offer in Nat’s Cafe

  79. Gunner-Mac says:

    Great post Kelsey.
    How is it that blogs like LG,Arseblog,Highbury House,ACLF and ArsenalArsenal can highlight the Goalkeeper’s situation at AFC for YEARS and counting,Yet Arsene/Ivan will not address the problem. Infact it seems that they do not even see the problem….Baffling to say the least.

  80. RockyLives says:

    BR 🙂

    Evonne – all depends on the medal.

  81. Gooner In Exile says:

    GM if you’re around you may have been twitter hacked, just got one of those spam messages from your account that is searching for facebook logins. Apparently someone took a picture of you in the bathroom!!

    Anyway just a warning you may want to change your pw’s.

  82. Rasp says:

    This appears to be an Arsenal website announcing it is closing down and citing AW as the reason…….

  83. Gunner-Mac says:

    Thaks GIE not looked at that thing since i set it up god knows when.
    change my pw’s you say?

  84. Gooner In Exile says:

    Evonne 9-2 seems about right for most clubs I would think. At least now most have realised that the afternoon down the pub is not good use of time as it was back in the day.

    That’s an hour warm up hour conditioning hour playing 5-a-side, hour on tactics, hour on set pieces.

    Okay the timings may not be what we would do, but I used to get bored after a two hour session twice a week.

    Was watching the penultimate Being Liverpool documentary, and it struck me how the game has just becomes a job for professional players. What surprised me more was Rodgers explaining to players that they should receive the ball on the half turn and go, now for me I would’ve thought that was “teaching a granny to suck eggs*” for footballers at the highest level.

    * whatever that expression means

  85. Gooner In Exile says:

    Ahhh wrong GM I was meaning Gooner Michael sorry

  86. Gunner-Mac says:

    No worries mate.

  87. Gooner In Exile says:

    Wonder how many Arsene created Rasp?

    My guess is without Wenger we would never have needed to move to the Emirates.

  88. Rasp says:

    Very true GiE, I think it is an illustration of the way football has changed over the past 4 decades and how expectation has become an overriding issue for some supporters.

  89. chas says:

    Arsenal Truth has been a long time favourite of the boys from LG.

    I’d also like to issue a reality check of my own………..

    I know it’s over two weeks ago, but can anyone remember how they felt after we beat West Ham in a tough London derby?

    Saturday was a very poor performance and we need to find out why it happened, but let’s not throw the baby out with the bath water, please.

  90. Rasp says:

    Hi chas, yes I was aware that it wallowed on the negative and you’re quite right to put the game in perspective.

    We all know someone who feels that way or have stood next to someone on the train after a game with a similar outlook – I guess its always been that way.

  91. chas says:

    I blame fishing nets, mogadon and the godforsaken interlull, which seems to have had an ultra-negative effect on all things Arsenal; players and fans alike.

  92. Rasp says:

    For GiE…. I particularly like the last para – you’ll find out when your bundle of joy arrives GiE and then grows old enough to argue with you 😆

    These days this proverbial saying has little impact as few people have any direct experience of sucking eggs – grandmothers included. It is quite an old phrase and is included in John Stevens’ translation of Quevedo’s Comical Works, 1707:

    “You would have me teach my Grandame to suck Eggs.”

    The notion of advising the young not to offer advice to those who are older and more experienced wasn’t new even then. Nicholas Udall, the author of ‘Ralph Roister Doister’ the first regular English comedy, and the headmaster of Eton, translated The Apophthegmata in 1542 from the works of Erasmus. That includes:

    “A swyne to teach Minerua, was a prouerbe, for which we sai: Englyshe to teach our dame to spyne.”

    The idea was carried forward to the 20th century with this quotation, attributed by The Reader’s Digest to Mark Twain (although not proven to be authentic):

    “When I was a boy of fourteen, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be twenty-one, I was astonished at how much the old man had learned in seven years.”

  93. chas says:

    You’re right, Rasp.
    Lots of supporters hanker for the good old days.
    My old man and JC often say/used to say how football was so much better when they were younger. Sometimes I just think they’re simply missing their youth.
    Football has changed so much in the last 30 years, you either change with it or leave it behind.

  94. MickyDidIt89 says:

    That Mark Twain line is brilliant.
    My children are twelve and still think I’m clever. I do know that with the arrival of teenagerdom its all about to change and I will morph into an outdated berk.
    As far as football is concerned, I do hanker after the old day’s of the 80’s, despite the fact that we were utter rubbish.

  95. Rasp says:

    Hi Micky, yes isn’t it strange. Statistically we’re far more successful now than the 80’s and yet we look back on them with such nostalgic affection

    I think football has lost its innocence. We have to take pleasure in more technical aspects now.

  96. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Thinking about it, I think you’ve hit it on the head. It has nothing to do with football being better in your youth, its simply being young, single and very frisky that made every waking moment so sunny.

  97. MickyDidIt89 says:

    I don’t think all the extra tv coverage, along with various media help to preserve the sanctity of what used to be saturday afternoons only, and with that, it was pretty much see it live or not at all.

  98. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Familiarity breeding……and whatnot

  99. kelsey says:

    Of course football has changed.the ball is like a baloon, the shoes like slippers and the game is faster, but in the eighties and beyond one could really only discuss football with your friends,face to face.

    The Internet has a lot to answer for.

    I think in our case the fans,particularly the younger ones don’t have an idol to worship anymore as they don’t stay around that long.

  100. GunnerrN5 says:

    Frankly I have a lot of empathy with yesterday’s comments from weedonald. He spoke his mind but it appears that you get castigated if you have the balls to argue against AA incumbents.
    You advocate that you welcome “all opinions” as long as they keep it clean but when in fact you get just that grenades get lobbed – how very sad!

    I think that there has been way too much crying over spilt milk – for crying out loud it was a one off bad game – get over it!

    We have obvious weaknesses in our goalkeeping and lack of depth in offence both of which were very apparent on Saturday. We just have to hope that AW finds and spends on the right type of players in January.

    For those that think watching football played in the “old days” on mud baths was better than the brilliant football we see played today on beautifully manicured pitches – I say think again as nostalgia is one thing but reality is another…

    Awaiting incoming grenades…………

  101. Big Raddy says:

    Anyone know anything about Schalke that may tickle my fancy (not boring team stuff – I can wikki that)?

    It is a tough one about “the good old days”. Whilst I do believe it was better – the atmosphere, the fandom, the songs, the ground etc etc It has to be said that the football we watch is far superior.

    Though the complete removal of the physical side of the game and the arrival of the players hitting the deck when touched on the arm is a huge step backwards.

    And I hate thinking things were better in my youth, what does that mean for the remainder of my life?

    I did note something to really look forward to next year …. Girls Aloud are reforming 🙂

  102. Big Raddy says:

    kelsey. That is true of this current Arsenal team but not of many others. Scholes, Giggs, JT, Stevie G, etc etc are all heroes to their fans

  103. GunnerrN5 says:

    The Internet and TV coverage has brought the game to countless millions of people worldwide and everybody from the fans upwards have reaped the benefits.

    When I was a kid the most football coverage was on the back pages of the Sunday papers, I used to cut out the league standings so that I could keep track. I’m really happy that the “old days’ are behind us…..

  104. Big Raddy says:

    GN5. I only saw one grenade and that blogger is as entitled to his opinion as weedonald.

    There is absolutely nothing wrong with having a good old moan every now and again.

  105. Big Raddy says:

    Gn5. That is true for both of us because we have ready access to the team and sport we love., but whether the game (not the football) is better is in my opinion very doubtful

  106. Big Raddy says:

    Dinner to cook 😦

  107. kelsey says:


    When the opening words to a comment are “You bunch of whiny, gloomy-doomers posting on this blog are so ready to write off the entire season based on 1 bad performance and a so-called ¨mediocre¨ start to our season and yet call themselves Arsenal supporters? How can you call yourselves fans”

    there is bound to be a reaction on here.You know that as you have been posting on here for quite a while.
    I go against the grain often, but am never ude to anyone if i can help it :).

    The rest of your post agrees with what many have said today, including myself.…

  108. GunnerrN5 says:


    I just did a “fact check” and you were correct and I was wrong. In fact there were more in agreement with weedonald than those opposing his views. The memory of a 75 year old ain’t what it used to be……so there were only a few verbals thrown and no grenades.

    You would really have to expand on your thoughts about the game being better in the past as personally I can’t think of too many areas where the game has not improved. My two biggest irritations in the modern game would be agents and fakers.

  109. GunnerrN5 says:


    A typical reaction to any extreme situation is an overreaction and many of yesterdays posts were an overreaction either one way or the other. I see nothing wrong in his language – a tad spiky to some and maybe distasteful to others – but one has to be really thin skinned to take umbrage at what he said.

  110. Red Arse says:


    Like Kelsey I found his all encompassing insult to all the bloggers on this site, at the start of his comment, was the problem, not any views he came up with, which were hardly revolutionary in any event.

    Peaches’s Post yesterday was excellent and showed her disappointment and that theme was echoed by others. Big deal.

    No call for insults.

  111. Gooner In Exile says:

    The simplest truth GN5 i football was better back in the day, because Man United could be relegated, so could Liverpool, teams who worked hard and built a team/squad could achieve something (obviously a bit of money helped too), but the money was earned, bums on seat, etc. Now it is all and only about money, thats why many of us yearn for a previous time, not because of the actual football that is played.

    I am sure you have complained in the past about the type of fans who now go compared to the working men that went many years ago. Is that not wanting something from yesteryear?

  112. Red Arse says:


    Are you saying we need a level playing field, where every club had a shot at trophies, and sod the money barons 🙂 And I would agree.

    I have a number of friends, living in London, who are from different parts of the world and have supported other clubs than Arsenal, for a variety of reasons.

    They used to say to me, at the time when Manu and Arsenal were the top two clubs, that altho they loved our style of football they were disheartened that the same two ‘big’ clubs always won every year.

    There is perspective and there is perspective! 🙂

  113. Rasp says:

    Hi GN5, I think others have made the points re Wee Donald’s comment. The fact is his allegations were not relevant to the post or to the mostly reasonable comments that followed. His accusations were false, his tone was rude and he was using this site to vent his redirected anger upon us.

  114. Gooner In Exile says:


    Just thinking on to when I was a kid. The FA Cup was a bigger game to win than the League title maybe because it was televised, every football fan i knew watched it didnt matter that my team wasn’t in it.

    When Sky first came on board every Sunday I would watch the game….again no matter who was playing. Now I might tune in for the occasional big match.

    I do know I couldn’t care less if we were in CL or not I’d still support the team and club, and go when I could probably more often, it’s in built. But attendances at midtable teams tell you all you need to know about the game…..really what’s the point of going if you support Villa. Once safe from relegation objective has been achieved, the money earned, the club survives, boredom ensues.

    So in short yes I’d prefer it if we could finish 17th and not worry because next year with a bit of luck and couple of transfers we could finish top. I know it’s not going to happen though is it.

  115. GunnerN5 says:


    Your final line is yet another indication of the cliquishness of AA – “insiders” thoughts are considered as opinions and others are construed as “insults”

    Insults indeed, believe me you will never be in doubt when I want to be insulting.

    To simply say that I completely disagree is inadequate but I will stop there for the sake of the good people who run the site.

  116. kelsey says:

    I sometimes wonder if 3 points for a win from the old two points has made the game more attractive.
    half the teams in the PL just park the bus more often than not to get a the start the season not wanting to get relegated.

  117. Gooner In Exile says:

    Maybe FFP needs to bring another dimension what if the CL money did not go to the clubs but to the Leagues, and what if the League said every team will earn the same, no matter where you finish in the league?

  118. kelsey says:

    Did you like my post,GunnerN5 😉 speak your mind

  119. Red Arse says:


    “No need for insults” referred to weedonald’s opening sentence to “the bunch of whiny, doom mongers”.

    I could have thrown in the accusation that we are all “pink fanboys” but I’m not sure what that means, so that one gets by.

  120. chas says:

    I think it was ‘plastic fanboys’ not pink ones.
    Pink fanboys is a whole other subject. 🙂

  121. Red Arse says:

    Thanks for that, Chas! 🙂

    You are improving my education, if I had told the wrong person that we had all been described on here as pink and not plastic fans we might have had a whole new bogsite, by the sound of it.

  122. Irishgunner says:

    Evening all,

    I didn’t get to see the Norwich game live, only saw the clips on MOTD and that’ll do me. No need to see anymore, we’ll bounce back though.

    Anyone following the U21 games?Seems a certain Thomas Eisfield is making a bit of a name for himself, wonder will he get a chance soon.

  123. GunnerN5 says:


    Oops I got defensive as I thought it was directed me – my appolgies for that, however the site is generally intolerant of the views of newer posters. They get ganged up on, this is most unfortunate as we lose the benefit of their diverse opinions, even given that either their tone or their wording is deemed out of tune……..

  124. LB says:

    I thought “plastic fanboys” was hilarious, never been called that before.

    All part of the healing process I suppose.

  125. Gooner In Exile says:

    GN5 many of the posters that get “ganged up on” normally start their sentence with – “what a pile of crap that was……” or something similar.

  126. GunnerN5 says:


    I have no qualms with the overall tone of your post, it was not as explosive as I thought it might be.

    I am in total disagreement with your comments about our defence, we are tied with Chelsea with the least goals conceded. If we can maintain our current goals against average of .75 goals per game we will be in for a good season.

    I wish I could be as positive about our offence 1.63 goals for per games is miserable. In five of our games we have only scored two goals.

    Any form of AW bashing upsets me as he has done absolute wonders for us and if had shown the same lack of allegiance as the players he molded into greatness then he would be long gone.

    Here`s a simple question why would one of the best and most sought after managers in the world put up with the amount of banal trash that is thrown at him – my answer is that he is totally committed to the set up that he has created.

  127. RockyLives says:

    I respect your views but I can’t agree with the accusation that new posters get ganged up on.

    I don’t know any site that falls over itself as much as this one to welcome new posters – whatever their opinions – provided that they are not gratuitously offensive.

    We have even had good banter with fans from rival clubs including Stoke, Man City and the Spuds.

    And even when a visitor’s first comment starts off with an insulting phrase (the usual style, referring to that day’s Post, is something like “It’s morons like you who blah blah blah”) I have seen regulars respond to their actual point, while asking them not to be abusive. Sometimes it works and they apologise and join in a discussion. To be honest, I think some of them adopt that kind of aggressive style because it’s the order of the day on many other football sites.

    As for cliquishness… guilty as charged M’Lord.

    Every single Arsenal blog that has any kind of following is cliquish, because you end up with regulars talking to each other every day and getting to know each other, so their comments contain lots of in jokes, references to previous conversations, inquiries about people’s health and so on.

    It happens here. It happens on Arseblog, Goonerholic, LegOver and pretty much all the other blogs.

    The only difference I can see is that the regulars on AA go further out of their way to welcome newcomers.

  128. GunnerN5 says:


    Herb would be a great example of being ganged up on – he was badly persecuted when he first posted and it was a wonder that he persevered and continued to post.

    That said I haven`t seen him posting in quite a while.

  129. Red Arse says:


    I think some of the ‘ganging up’ is probably a matter of perception, which does not mean that it isn’t hurtful to someone who believes that to be true, but I have not seen any such instances myself.

    From my perspective, practically every new visitor to this site is invited to write a Post almost as soon as their first comment hits the screen! 🙂 🙂 Now that could be scary!! Oh, oh, now I am in trouble!! 🙂

    Perhaps I should put in a disclaimer here. I am far from being a member of an AA clique, in fact nothing could be further from the truth of the matter.

    I do not know anyone, except a couple of AAers, by (real) name; I have never met any other AAer, either at the matches or at the hallowed Tavern; I certainly have nothing to do with running the site, nor am I a founder member (?), nor do I speak for anyone else; and I no doubt bug everyone by being self opinionated! 🙂

    I speak my mind, I enjoy the company, and especially pontificating on all matters Arsenal 🙂

    In other words — I am just like you!! 🙂

  130. Red Arse says:

    GN5, herb is happily ensconced and happily blogging away on a sister site to AA.

    He is as forthright as ever!! 🙂

  131. Gooner In Exile says:

    GN5 I reckon one more defeat in October will bring him to the surface. 😉

  132. we will get that top 4 coz team competing for 4th spot are simply more shit than us.

  133. Red Arse says:

    Hi Rocky Mountain, 🙂

    What clique? Are you holding out on me?

    Are you back as Mr Loquacious? I have missed him!! 🙂

  134. RockyLives says:

    Haha Gn5
    Herb ganged up on everyone else 🙂

  135. Gooner In Exile says:

    😀 Critic that is certainly one way of looking at it….we are the least shit of the other 17 teams…..hoorah for that.

    I think many of us are down on the performance rather than the team itself…if that makes sense, many of us had convinced ourselves that we had a new spine in the team, one that could stand up to the rigours of the battle consistently. I will say we have had a lot of away games in our early fixtures. Also shouldn’t be forgotten we have only played 3 league games at home of our 8.

  136. barumgooner says:

    Nicely written and heartfelt post Kelsey…but…If im honest I dont really agree with a lot of it. I think the defence both as a unit and as a whole team has been 100% better this term. The team has been playing with heart and belief and we have merely experienced a poor day or two. We are still bedding in players, have our no1 keeper missing and two or three others who could change the game. I think looking at the two super-rich teams we just aren’t going to win (or buy) the league title this season but not many of us really expected that. We need to finish top four and win a cup to build belief. I, like us all am bitterly disappointed with the results against Norwich and indeed Chelsea but its far from doom and gloom imo. We have the strongest squad since we moved stadiums and I dont think we are far away.

  137. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi Rasp, thanks for the AT link earlier today. What an attention seeker. That guy is simply football impotent. Truth my arse! 🙂

  138. Big Raddy says:

    GN5. Thanks for your polite reply. As to clique’s Rocky says it much better than I could.

    As to the football . ….

    GIE makes an excellent point re the Top 4. and here are a few more examples of why the game was better, even if the football wasn’t.

    Pre-match the players connected with the fans. Impossible now they don’t even acknowledge the fans when they sing their names.

    Marching Band vs Rubbish DJ.

    A proper leather ball

    Players didn’t feign injury.

    Players were allowed to tackle and there was such a thing as shoulder to shoulder. Nowadays the slightest touch and a player falls to the ground – it is embarrassing.

    Characters in the game. Is there a Dave Mackay or a Best or even a Gascoigne?

    Noisy, singing fans at every ground who arrived way before the start of the game to enjoy the atmosphere

    Fans talked about football, not economics/boardrooms

    The FA Cup meant something.

    Playing in Europe was special vs Europa League

    Players were just ordinary blokes not superstars who earn 100 times a nurse’s salary. (blame George Eastham)

    I could continue but it makes me feel old ….

  139. GunnerN5 says:


    It`s all a matter of perception and mine is very different to your`s.

    I have never been a member of a clique and at my stage of life I never will be.

    I am extremely self opinionated and have never felt the need of a supporting cast to slap me on the back and give me false praise, in fact it infuriates me…..

    My self confidence has always been sky high – having left school at 13 years old and ending up at the executive level in billion $ companies was not achieved by relying on others – it was all self taught.

    RA is right we might be just alike – except his writing skills are incredible and mine show that I left school at 13.

  140. TotalArsenal says:

    Lovely comment, but football is still great, Raddinksy 🙂

    Although I had a shit night on Saturday at Carrow Road, it was great to see the Norwich fans having a good time. I was surrounded by dads with sons, and sometimes girls, really enjoying the game. The atmosphere was great: lots of singing and hardly any swearing: just a feast of football for them.

    The thing is, they are not burdened by incredible expectations and can still enjoy the journey. I said to the guy next to me: your son will never forget today, I reckon. He said: ‘damn right he won’t; last time we were here we got beaten by Liverpool 1-5, but today is really great’. And that is life for most football fans in a nutshell. 🙂

  141. GunnerN5 says:


    Thank you for stating your reasons for liking the old game, it make for a far better dialogue.

    As overseas supporters we receive the full benefit of the modern game and I for one would feel totally lost without either the TV or the Internet coverage.

    Being a stats nut the Internet is my library where I go for the facts and figures that quench my thirst for data.

    Television coverage (along with multiple satellite dishes) allow me to watch 6 to 8 games a week, having a PVR I also get to record games that I am unable to watch live.

    I’ve not been to a live game since 2008 to experience the atmosphere for myself but I’ve made many comments on AA about how poor it seems to be through a camera lens. I just loved the days and the grand company we used to have under the clock – simply irreplaceable.

    Oh BR, we sure have characters in the game today it`s just that they are not known through the words of a journalist but through TV and that exposure can be very cruel.

    You see I still think of the FA Cup as special, in fact I on my bookshelf I have a copy of the History of the FA Cup which I still go to for fact checking – and a touch of nostalgia.

    All in all my memory banks overflow with thoughts of the past, I still remember going to my first game 65 years ago, I still remember the horse and carts clip clopping up and down the streets of Highbury, however ilke everything else in life I`m glad our game has moved on.

    Can you even begin to imagine today`s players either kicking or heading a ball from the 40`s – soaking wet leather covered in mud, the thought of it makes me chuckle.

  142. RockyLives says:

    Your achievements are a credit to you.

    I think you might have misunderstood my reference to a “clique”. I genuinely don’t feel that the regulars who chat most days on AA are doing it to get a slap on the back and false praise.

    They share a common interest (Arsenal) and, for the most part, a common sense of humour, and they like chatting with each other. To me it’s like a bunch of regulars down the pub. You pop in for an hour, talk bollocks, have a laugh, and tootle off home.

    Likewise, you describe yourself as self opinionated and not in need of a supporting cast. I believe that description fits many of the AA regulars too.

    Clique is a negative word, although I pleaded guilty because by some definitions your use of it to describe some of the AA crowd is not wholly wrong. But perhaps “group of mates” is a better term.

    Maybe you are not someone who ever hung out with groups of mates in your life (some people are loners – nothing wrong with that).

    But I value the group of mates I’ve found in my virtual local (AA) and I don’t think that their friendship is indicative of any weakness of character on my part or theirs (as you imply).

    Some of them, I believe, have also done fairly well for themselves in the world.

  143. Gooner In Exile says:

    Raddy :
    “Noisy, singing fans at every ground who arrived way before the start of the game to enjoy the atmosphere”

    Spot on, this is the problem of all seaters and pre allocated seats, I would like the club to allow unallocated seating behind the goals, I feel then we would get more in.

    Imagine if we AAers could sit together we would probably arrive at the Emirates a lot earlier and chat in ground rather than the disappointment of leaving the Tavern and your mates to sit dotted around the ground.

    I would suggest turning off the damn PA, but interestingly the Being Liverpool docusoap revealed an alternative, he said he likes to play the music gradually louder as the fans will compete to sing above the music.

  144. richie says:

    @TA 9:12 my thoughts exactly my Gooner bro. AT wouldn’t know the truth if it got bit squarly in the Arse with it. It was another Le Grove style doomer blog full of half truths rumours inuendos and down right lies. Good riddance if it really goes! I could never bring myself to blog on it, then one day in a fit of self rightous outrage I did, but because I was swimming with good clear strokes against their anti Wenger stream, my comments vanished. I thought maybe I hadn’t logged in properly so I went through the procedure again slowly and carefully and re-posted. My post stayed for almost 20mins and then it was cut again. I never bothered to post, and I never join in on the site again realizing my views didn’t sit well with the sites fascist controllers.

  145. richie says:

    @Rasp 4:55 Thanks for the link I love the idea that some of the lower echalon blogs might call it a day, we’ve got more than enough doomers around, one less, is very welcome. Truth might be in the eye of the beholder but AT was right up there with Donald Rumsfield and his unknown knows.

  146. GunnerN5 says:


    A loner I’m not I’m surrounded by family and friends that I know and love and whose motives I trust, also your insinuations about what you believe I mean are way off track.

    I’ve never had a need to be liked which affords me the unique opportunity to say what I think without caring about the responses.
    I care deeply about people – but only those that are willing to care about themselves.

    For the past 15 years or so I’ve spent around two days a week counseling folks that need some guidance on their future path.
    I find these people by going to the local unemployment centre and chatting with folks to find out what their aspirations are – those that are looking for a handout are quickly overlooked but those that are really serious about their lives and their future get my undivided attention. Nobody supports me in this effort, nor do I want them to, it’s simply giving to those in serious need with nothing expected in return – save that they may have a better future.

    I only tell you this only so you may recognize that I’m a loner only in the sense that I work alone and seek no praise for my endeavours and just to tell you that your negative words on my intentions and character are misplaced and fall on deaf ears!

  147. RockyLives says:

    Heaven only knows what you’re referring to with your mention of “negative words on my intentions and character.”

    Perhaps you should re-read my comment.

    I was simply trying to understand your earlier comment implying that the regular contributors on here blog together for mutual back slapping and false praise, whereas you are made of stronger stuff.

    It struck me as slightly patronising but I am trying to understand the perspective of someone who feels that way about a group of people who enjoy chatting together on a blog. If others (perhaps you, I don’t really know) want to plough a different, more individualistic furrow, good luck to them (you). I certainly won’t criticise you for it or imply that you are a weak character for it – because how on earth could I know?

    I know as little about you as you do about all the other bloggers on here, some of whom you suppose only blog through a perceived need for backslapping.

    As to your voluntary work with people facing challenges in their life – again, it’s a credit to you, although I am slightly at a loss as to what it has to do with this conversation.

  148. GunnerN5 says:


    I realize that you are at a loss to understand, but that is not the least bit surprising.

  149. RockyLives says:


    Goodnight Gn5

    I wish all the very best for you and your family.

  150. GunnerN5 says:

    Goodnight Rocky.

  151. kelsey says:

    Morning all.

    I have to interject with some of the comments by GunnerN5 and others late last night.

    Go to any site be it Arsenal or otherwise and you basically get three types of bloggers.

    Many have a hardcore of bloggers who stay rigid in that they never blog on any other site and if one leaves a comment on these sites,generally one is ignored.

    This is the Internet and there are no hard and fast rules,it is an open public forum and many may blog say here and leave comments on other sites,especially if the daily post catches their eye and they want to add their opinion.

    Then you get a few people who leave a derogratary remark, never to be seen again.

    We are just another site which mainly due to peaches and rasp and various good contributors who give their time to write posts, do a lot of work behind the scenes and encourage many who visit to possibly write for us.I doubt you have an incling as to how much work goes on to prepare a daily post and the countless e mails sent to AA which need addressing.

    Gunnern5 we are not a clique, and you and I know each other quite well.

    I don’t like the fact you mentioned a certain poster who you feel was casgated on here.I assure you that is a completely wrong assumption. Peaches and i had countless e mails from this person and we advised and pacified him but he chose to blog elsewhere. So be it, we move on and others join.

    If you have an issue with someone e mail me or Rasp or peaches but keep it off the blog. ( I have been guilty myself of expressing my views on here about a certain individual, but then regetted it.)

    I hope that clear things up and you understand.

  152. chas says:

    Things are bad when even the club crest turns on itself…..

  153. Red Arse says:

    Morning Chas, 🙂

    The 6:22 Vid is clearly of a chicken fanboy!

  154. kelsey says:

    Morning chas and RA.

    I think many thought I would lambast more severley the players manager and general running of the club, in my post.I am an old hand and will add my expectations this season are not that high.I purposely didn’t mention individual players except the keeper situation.
    What i will say is that at this moment of time I do not agree that we have a stronger squad than in the last few years always assuming that we have 2 to 3 players who appear to be highly injury prone.

  155. Red Arse says:

    Morning Kelsey, 🙂

    I thought your Post was excellent and was both balanced and fair.

    I do not like or understand the mentality of those who vulgarly accuse the manager or players.

    That said, I have often been in a pub where there has been a ‘moan’ or ‘praise’ for this player or that, with some saying one thing and others saying something different.

    If we all restricted ourselves to only praising players and never pointing out concerns we would be behaving like the perfect, robotic Stepford Wives (OK the male version) 🙂

  156. Big Raddy says:

    kelsey. We disagree about the squad but that is another debate.

    Juventus playing up the road tonight and once again the ticket price is €65+ minimum.

    Which is another thing which was better in the old days. Standing allowed for cheaper tickets.

    GIE. No question that I would agree with unallocated seating. FCK have an entire stand unallocated. The process requires some work for the stewards but functions very well.

  157. Big Raddy says:

    chas. Love the music vid. The drummer is superb, making something extremely complex look simple

  158. evonne says:

    Funny how GN5 claims he doesn’t n seek approval, but bangs on about his personal achievements. Hm, something fishy there.

    Anyway, morning all, who do we want to lose tonight?

    Rocky – half a pint for me mate

  159. Big Raddy says:

    RA. Agree. I love a good moan.

  160. evonne says:

    who doesn’t Raddy?

    Ok, I want Celtic, Braga and Shekhtar Donetsk to win tonight. Not asking for much, am I ?

  161. evonne says:

    oh my dear Dennis, there are as much as one in 12 youngsters self-harming in UK 😦 😦 this is an epidemic 😦 😦

  162. Big Raddy says:

    I want Nord Sjælland, Celtic and the other chaps.

  163. evonne says:

    why Nord-unpronouncable Raddy? Are they Dannish?

  164. Big Raddy says:

    It is said that one in 9 boys and one in 5 girls (under the age of 16) are sexually abused in UK. The self-harming comes as no surprise

  165. Big Raddy says:

    Yes, Evonne. NS come from a small town of just 10k people 30 kms from Copenhagen.

    To play in the CL is a dream come true for them.

  166. evonne says:

    no words for that 😦

  167. slimgingergooner says:

    An interesting post Kelsey, but I feel it may be a little premature.

    The fact we have gone behind in our last 4 matches doesn’t look quite as bad when you see the games before Norwich were City away, Chelsea home, West Ham away. Also, the argument about the defence not improving doesn’t really stand up when you look at the comparison from last season. The GK situation, as pointed out by many already, is a difficult one to change.

    I understand that the result against Norwich can bring about the feeling of deja vu based on our failings over the last 7 years or so, but I believe this team to be made of sterner stuff and you don’t have to look too far to find evidence. 1-0 down at City and West Ham would both have been losses a couple of years ago due to lack of toughness or mental strength, but this current side got positive results.

    If, after QPR, Reading and United, we haven’t improved, then I think everyone will feel the way you do in your post, but lets not go overboard after one very poor (admittedly) defeat.

  168. Rasp says:

    Morning all, below is weedonald’s response to our comments at the end of Sunday’s post.

    Just to add to kelsey’s point; we spend a lot of time behind the scenes explaining how the blog works to those who feel they are hard done by. weedonald was quite aggresive in his tone the first time he came on the blog but we worked with him and developed a mutual understanding. We challenged him to write a piece which we duly published and was well received. There are several others who know through our off site correspondence that we practice what we preach.

    It is impossible to create a blog that conforms to everyone’s expectations and it is likely that quite a few will not like today’s post. All we ask is allow it to be aired in the spirit of freedom of opinion and if you disagree, by all means say so, but do it without insult or aggression.

    This is WD’s comment……

    Rasp, Chas and all the other guardians of probity and defenders of civilized blogging….whether I am new here or have been begrudgingly invited into and accepted in the blog ¨family¨ is irrelevant to my post.
    Maybe I was harsh and maybe I have a different manner of expressing my disappointment and disillusion at what constituted a surrender against Norwich, but so what?
    One defeat and suddenly our season is in disarray or our chances of winning anything dissipated like a London fog? After the WestHam victory everyone was upbeat and enthused about our ¨potential¨, now everyone is down in the dumps (including me) BUT it is far from gloom and doom after one lackadaisical performance….and that was my point. Maybe if i has started my post with ¨Cheer up everyone¨ rather than the alternative, it might have gone over less controversially but to accuse me of being tacky in my criticism showing a lack of tact and intelligence is more than harsh and unjustified, it smacks of arrogance and superiority….because I maintained that there is hope and all this lamenting is a waste of time. Anyway, I have a nice post that reflects on what the Arsenal truly represents and I’ll send it on if there is interest.

  169. Rasp says:

    Incidentally weedonald, if you are reading this, we will be delighted to publish your post if you’d care to email it to

  170. Big Raddy says:

    Rasp. Thank you for being so eloquent on my/our behalf.

    I look forward to weedonald’s post

  171. Gooner In Exile says:

    My first sentence typed in comments was:

    “Don’t flame me but…..” Wonder where I’d tried to comment before.

    My last comment on that day was “I’m bookmarking this site”

    It was after Wigan away two (maybe three seasons ago) the criticisms as stinging of Wenger for putting out a weakened team in a congested fixture pile up, I’d been to the game and my comment was against tide of post match defeat, I was new and there were several of the regulars on here. However I did not feel like I was entering a clique or simply ignored.

    Bloggers here take name calling personally, and the regulars try not to resort to it (unless we are talking about ex players), if you come on and post something construed as such you will get challenged for that view and why shouldn’t you? In fact nearly all comments are responded to (unless you’re Kelsey and Red Arse 😉 ) and that is also a good thing regulars try to engage people in debate, even the most snippy comments….isn’t that what a blog is for? Would we rather everyone said their piece and disappeared, wouldn’t get very far in the world if we just allowed someone to express a point of view and not discuss to see where the view has come from.

    I think it would be hard to find another group of bloggers who first and foremost are fans and supporters of Arsenal and don’t have a sense of entitlement as to what the club should do for them. And most of all try to enjoy the ride…..

  172. Morning all

    New Post …………….

  173. Rasp says:

    Morning GiE, I remember that day. We were down in the dumps and your injection of positivity lifted our spirits. Supporting a footbll team is an emotional experience and since emotion is the opposite end of the scale to reason, it inevitably produces overreaction.

    People may deal with disappointment by looking for someone to blame and others counter it by only focusing on the positives – mix the two together and disagreement is inevitable. BTW, I’m so glad you bookmarked us 😛

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  176. encarta says:


    Reality check needed after Norwich defeat. | Arsenal Arsenal

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