Now We Can See How Much Damage Van Persie, Cesc and Nasri Did

I hope all those who’ve made a career out of knocking the Mighty Arsenal are taking a good look at the Premier League Table.

We’re as high as Nigella and as happy as Wayne Rooney in a bingo hall.


Not that I’m gloating… oh no… there’s a long way to go yet, it’s a marathon not a snickers etc etc.

But at the moment I think it’s fair to say that the squad is exceeding what most of us expected for this year.

The optimists among us hoped for a steady build on the defensive tightness and greater togetherness that steered us to fourth place in the second half of last season.

When we signed Mesut Ozil, maybe we dared to hope for a bit more.

But to be comfortably top of the table as we enter December? And to be nine points ahead of ManUre? And 10 ahead of the Tinies? I doubt any of us (apart from Terry Mancini Hair Transplant) would have wagered much on us doing so well.

Which raises the question of WHY?

Why have we shown not just incremental improvement on last season, but a genuine step change in confidence, quality and – most important of all – results?

There are many individual factors we can point to: the emergence of the Welsh Messi as the best player in the Premeirship; the exceptional form of our Pole In Goal; the precision of Ozil’s assist-making; the superb organization of our back four…

But I think Arsene Wenger gave us the real answer last week when he pointed out that this year, unlike the two previous years, we have not taken the Good Ship Arsenal on a new footballing voyage with a big hole below the waterline.

Le Boss said the clear difference this time round was that we did not lose a star player on the eve of the new campaign.

It meant we started out with the same group of players who had done so well from January to May – and threw a genuine superstar into the mix for good measure.

Contrast that with the two previous years.

The summer of 2012 was spent with Brave Sir Robin trying to pretend he was undecided about leaving but finally walking out on the club that paid his wages through so many interminable injury periods. The little boy inside him turned out to be an ungrateful little twunt.

Twelve months earlier we lost Cesc Fabregas to Barcelona (a move, admittedly, that came as a surprise to no-one); but then the unlikeable little Frenchman Samir Na$ri decided he wanted to line his wallet and started touting himself round  clubs with deep pockets, ending up at Petrodollar City.

Both those disrupted summers led directly to disjointed and disappointing starts to the new season. While other teams went off at a sprint, we set off on those season-long races with an open parachute strapped to our back.

We were forced to try and bed in new signings who, in most cases, were completely new to the Premier League; we had to work out new formations to suit the new personnel; we had to turn players from strangers into team mates and heaven only knows what psychological damage was done to the rest of the squad by the fact that our best players had made it clear they wanted out.

Somehow, miraculously, Arsene managed to maintain our membership of the Top Four club by the end of both seasons – but it was certainly no thanks to the Dear Departed.

And looking at how we’re doing now it makes me really angry about those players who left us in the lurch – yes, even Cesc (although BSR and Na$ri were more selfish, disloyal and narcissistic).

Van Persie and Nasri could have made their intentions clear to the club at the end of their last seasons with us. Their leavings would still have been a loss but at least the fans would not have been led a merry dance all summer long and the club and squad could have started rebuilding sooner.

I’m not suggesting we would have had glorious seasons if they had not left but – like Arsene – I feel we would have done a LOT better. We might have fallen short of winning the league, but we might well have been in the mix for longer instead of having to play catch-up with the skinny cock brigade.

The Arsenal revival we’re witnessing this year might have happened 12 months earlier. It’s the very success we’re enjoying now that highlights just what those players who left really cost us.

It’s naïve to expect players to show loyalty and I’m sure many fans take the view that if they want to go somewhere else for more money or a better chance of glory, who can blame them?

I can’t share that laissez faire view. I remain a dinosaur. I expect the adulation and support I give to the players to mean something, even in an age when the youth squad are driving Porsches and earning more in a month than most people do in a year.

And so Van Persie, Nasri, Fabregas: je t’accuse! YOU caused us to have disastrous starts to the past two seasons; YOU gave ammunition to the silly Wenger Out campaigners; YOU stopped us being in a position to fight for the big prizes; YOU hurt us. And WE won’t forget.

Although Cesc can come back if he wants 🙂



192 Responses to Now We Can See How Much Damage Van Persie, Cesc and Nasri Did

  1. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Wow Rasp

    These banners are fanbloodytastic

    Off reading

  2. Räsp says:

    Brilliant Rocky – you’ve climbed to yet another peak 😛

    I’m like you, I tend to hold a grudge where its deserved. I harbour no ill feeling towards Cesc but the other two I have no time for.

    Some bloggers said they didn’t fault Brave Sir Robin for his goal celebration against us but I thought it was crass in the extreme – Aaron showed him how it should be done on Saturday.

    I agree, the loss of these players has hurt us, but as many have said, it will make it even sweeter if achieve the success we deserve this year.

  3. Räsp says:

    Morning Micky, the superb form of our boys has got my creative juices flowing again – I’m glad you approve

  4. Norfolk Gooner says:

    ‘morning AAers,

    What you say Rocky is very true, the defections did serious damage and must have affected the morale of their former team-mates. It must have been disheartening to sit in the dressing room and watch one of your colleagues chatting on his mobile to his agent plotting a move away.

  5. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Spot on Rocky.

    There’s also the fact that Arsene wisely only added the two players, and this instils a sense of confidence and belief in those already wearing the shirt.

    Also, when you said “I doubt any of us (apart from Terry Mancini Hair Transplant) would have wagered much on us doing so well”, I say “£100 on Arsenal for the title, and this was before we signed Ozil” 🙂

  6. MickyDidIt89 says:


    I was wondering what you’d come up with for Monday. A Mountain Range, or a photoshopped image of our Rocky all muscular and oiled up with boxing gloves on 🙂

  7. Harry Barracuda says:

    Well we get our chance to show our credentials starting next weekend: Everton (H), Napoli( A), Manchester Dhabi (A), Chelsea (H). Doesn’t get any tougher than that.

    I’m assuming Hull are beatable of course.

  8. Räsp says:

    😆 Micky, we’ve already got the female contingent all excited over the pictures of Giroud in the nuddy, we don’t want to push them over the edge (especially since some are now grandmas 😕 )

  9. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Check out the great pic above.

    I know Flamini showed his ugly revolutionary side over shirtgate, but how about those black boots. Now, there’s a traditionalist 🙂

  10. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Don’t mean to put our Ladies down or anything, but sometimes I think you only have to say the word “man” and they get all hot flushy 🙂

  11. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Off to do some stuff.

  12. Dako Charles says:

    nice one rocky, cesc did not offend arsenal fc, but robin and nasri should proceed to the hottest part of hell

  13. Barnsey says:

    “happy as Wayne Rooney in a bingo hall”…love it

  14. Pat7 says:

    I am not convinced that RVP didnt warn AW of leaving unless he made the team competitive. I dislike his respect toward us since but he was always a sparky character, sometimes it helped us!

    The rest is a great read Rocky and absolutely true. Cross fingers ffor the week or two ahead………

  15. VCC says:

    Rocky……”Happy as Wayne Rooney in a bingo hall” CLASSIC. LMFAO

  16. Gööner In Exile says:

    Morning all, nail on the head Rocky.

    You do have to wonder whether we would have signed some of the players that now feature and are part of this “team” mentality if we hadn’t lost those mentioned.

    The best thing about our current team is it has the right blend of youth and experience and given the right acquisitions and promotions could become as Terry keeps saying a sustained force. The question remains if we do the unthinkable and win the thing this year what will the oil financed clubs do? As someone said yesterday Rambo on a new deal, only to be released when he is ready to retired to Cardiff.

  17. VCC says:

    Simply brilliant post Sir Rocky.

    Most enjoyable read for a long, long time.

  18. Belfastgooner says:

    Yes Rocky fantastic analysis.
    The disruption those players caused by leaving left us in turmoil. No one deserves further success more than Arsene. The way he handled the negative press over the years on the whole was remarkable – albeit he lost the plot a bit last season when things went completely pear shaped.
    When you compare that to AVB’s attitude to criticism I know who would give me more confidence.
    How many points would you be happy with from our December fixtures? We should beat Hull and Everton. City is going to be difficult. I mean who plans these fixtures? We’ve 9 days from City match to Chelsea and just over 2 between Napoli and City. Are the powers above trying to force us to drop points? I would hope to beat WHU away but feel we’ll be so knocked for the Newcastle match we’ll drop a few points there. Still top by January!

  19. LB says:

    As I read through I thought yes this is true, yes, yes, ooh, please don’t be too hard on Cesc, yes true about BSR, definitely true about Nasri, oooh, ohhh gentle, gentle and then the last line arrived and I smiled.

    Superb read as ever Rocky Mountain Dew.

  20. evonne says:

    Fab post Rocky! They damaged us, they held us back and they caused unrest in the changing rooms (especially the fat one). Cesc is forgiven, of course, but others are blacklisted for life. I always forgive my enemies, but never forget their names – yes, that’s you Na$ri and R$P.

    Interestingly enough FFBW has been playing very well lately, have you noticed his form guys? Well, well, well, let’s guess what is the reason behind this? A clue – he signed a 4 year deal in 2011

    Thank you Rocky, superb read.

  21. evonne says:

    Micky and Rasp – why shouldn’t grandmas get all excited? I know of men with wives younger then their grandchildren and that’s ok?? I am not impressed.

  22. Belfastgooner says:

    Who is FFBW Evonne?

  23. that was a really good post!

    Couldn’t agree more..THOSE departures REALLY derailed our progress and as you said, having to play catch-up meant the only achievement we could achieve was the top 4..nice point though of Cesc ALWAYS being welcome 2 the home of football 😉

    i actually harbor no ill feelings towards na$ri as van judas makes him and cashley combined look like saints!..Rambo showed him what class is all about

    we all acknowledge that its a bit early to celebrate but boy do i LOVE what i’m seeing and long may it continue!

  24. great post Rocky,
    i’m over the moon with our start, & good riddance to those who wanted out, i dont want to see any of them back again Cesc included….
    Just a note on widgets,,,, Theo’s assists are way wrong.
    Keep up the good work

  25. Räsp says:

    Hi Jonathan, what makes you think Theo’s assists are wrong? I’ve checked and looked at chas’ spreadsheet and all seems correct

  26. Räsp says:

    The goals and assists figures include the 2 CL qualifiers, after Theo’s assist to Ramsey on Saturday, he is on 3 in the prem

  27. Danny says:

    At the end of the 2011-12 season, after that WBA goalkeeper gift match, Arsene and Ivan met RVP in his house to discuss his future. At this meeting (as far as we know) RVP told them he was leaving and they told him not to say anything till after the European Championship. Knowing he was leaving, they bought Santi and Giroud, maybe Poldoski’s early transfer was also taken into account. They should’ve sold him on July 1st – that would’ve settled the team but no it dragged on and then sold him to Man U. after the pre-season matches. Yes I hate RVP but the way that he left is not toatlly his fault.

  28. Räsp says:

    Belfast @ 11:06, the first 2 letters are Fat and French …. I’ll leave the rest up to you

  29. wally says:

    I think the difference is the defence. Just look at the goals against over the last few years compared to this year. 5 shut-outs already? Only one goal of a set piece? Unheard of compared to the recent past.

    Losing offensive players doesn’t help but it doesn’t dictate how the team plays defensively. Think how often you see the defenders just hoof it down field in order to clear the lines and get organized. Haven’t seen that or anything remotely like it in 4-5 years.

    I think Wenger has let Bould have more of an influence and to great effect.

  30. Räsp says:

    Hi Danny, that was the way I understood it too. I’m not sure who at Arsenal was responsible for the way it was handled – I don’t think it was Arsene, we’ll probably never know.

    But since leaving BSR has shown that he was not worthy of the club and manager that nursed him (and paid him) through so many unproductive seasons.

  31. Hi Rasp
    I got tripped up myself on Theo’s stats the other day, by a ton of people on twitter.
    I checked and both & espn have him down as 1 goal & 2 assists.
    Though neither of those websites log the records from our CL qualifier against Fenerbache where Theo bagged an assist.

  32. Very funny post,

    Not just Ozil but the Flame was nearly just as good a signing, what a player/leader he has become.

    Also Gnabry breaking through and even Jenkinson now challenging for a place there is real competition in every position, except CF an GK realistically. So the depth of the squad factoring in strongly.

    The form from the last few months of last season suggested we had the foundations and for once in recent years we have built upon it.

    Don’t want Cesc back we are better without his bad attitude.

  33. Norbet says:

    Good analysis; well done

  34. Räsp says:

    Thanks Jonathan, I get my figures from chas. It was he who challenged me to produce a stats widget, I agreed on the condition that he provided the figures. I’m sure he will check back when he reads your comments. Its good to know that people look at the widgets – makes it worthwhile 🙂


    Great stuff Rocky, and thanks for giving me a mention.

    Of course you are spot on. We effectively lost a whole team.

    I am in the camp that harbours no ill feeling to any of the players departed, even Adeybarndoor and Van Persie.

    They just happened to play for us in a period were compared to our rivals we were financially weak. The players that left were men out of time

    In fact, from a footballing perspective I feel sorry for them.

    Over the coming years they will watch from the sidelines as Arsenal emerges as the best team in England, and hopefully Europe.

    Arsene Wenger and the Board deserve all the credit. Despite the criticism and pressure, they stuck to there guns.

    You Reap what you Sow.

  36. i’ll leave you with a stat that i among many are very happy about at the moment >>>
    Ramsey 13/14 13gls, 5 ass, 46 shots, 23 SOT, Shooting Acc 50%, scoring 28% of total shots & 57% of SOT – 1gl per 3.5shots

  37. jane johnson says:

    I wouldn’t want Fabregas to come back – I can’t forget the goal he gifted to Barcelona at the Nou Camp – I think his back heel to give away the ball to Barcelona was deliberate.

  38. Räsp says:

    Hi Jane, I can’t agree with the backheel conspiracy theory, don’t forget he scored a penalty against them with a broken leg!

    However, I wouldn’t take him back now because we have a fine crop of midfielders who have got us into this position and it would be unfair to bring Cesc back in place of any of them.

  39. Big Raddy says:

    jane. Your comment really made me laugh, never let it be said that women do not hold grudges 🙂

    I would take back Cesc but am not entirely sure where he would fit into the team, asumming Gnabry or Ox will be Rosicky’s long-term replacement …..??

  40. Big Raddy says:

    Rocky. Another classic. It was a happy day when you decided to grace AA with your posts.

    Nasri and BSR are dead to me.

  41. Räsp says:

    Having read back through the post again, I can see how the more obvious contributing factors such as form and confidence were underpinned by the stability of the squad over the summer and not having a disruptive influence on the training ground … very clever Rocky, you’re 100% right.

    We are missing some of our good friends of late, I know Kelsey will pop in when he can, but what of GN5, Shard, Sharkey, Harry, Carlitto and many others?

    I’ve looked at the stats and we had many more visitors when we weren’t doing so well, it must be true, bad news sells newspapers 😕

  42. LB says:

    The path is laid for the prodigal son’s return when Cazorla retires/returns to Spain.

    Although, thinking about it while I write this I don’t expect Rosicky or Diaby to be with us next season.

    So maybe even sooner.

  43. Räsp says:

    Hi LB, Cesc seems to have morphed into a genuine No.10, is that where you can see him playing for us? Actually scrap that, the No.10 thing doesn’t apply with us any more – we have 5 No.10’s now 😛

    Last season and before I’d be filled with trepidation if we were drawn against Barca, this year, I’d quite like to see that game.

  44. RA says:

    I thoroughly enjoyed the Post, Rocky, and there is no surprise there!

    What caught my attention today tho was the change of style with a much more introspective feel to the narrative, which perhaps given the nature of the subject matter was to be expected, but you handle every nuance of various writing styles with such consummate ease one can only stand and applaud a master. 🙂

    Compered with other Blogs, AA is streets ahead in the quality of its stable of Authors, so that your weekly output, preceded by two outstanding recent pieces by LB and Raddy, not to mention the other worthy contributors who write on an occasional basis, gives a freshness and variety that is unmatched anywhere else.

    Yo! 🙂

  45. LB says:

    Good point Rasp

    Arsenal – Barça is a mouth watering prospect.

  46. JanMan says:

    Nice post Rocky, thank you. Greetings from a cold, windy, cloudy, South Carolina USA. I might as well be back in Germany 🙂 Great result on the weekend and what class from AR. How many more tests do we have to face before these so called experts (TV Pundits) acknowledge the fact we are title contenders? Not saying we will win the EPL but in our current position we have to be recognized as deserving contenders.
    On the subject of RVP I am sure there was a lot of inside issues that we are not all aware of. RVP must have pushed the wrong buttons and crossed the line with Mr. Wenger. Nasri is just a gready twunt and Fab was just a matter of time before he returned to his roots. I do think that it would have been hard on some of the players and morale in the dressing room may well have been affected but hey we have definitaly progressed and as they say, “we are top of the league”

  47. evonne says:

    Belfast – Fat French Bench Warmer

    Micky and Rasp – actually, the AA grandmothers get excited about the same guys that excite you 🙂 see……

    Rocky – one more observation – Ramsey is a classy act, no doubt about it. But what about Cardiff fans??!! They clapped his superb goal against them. Now, that is sheer class, I was hugely impressed

  48. Big Raddy says:

    One of the reasons for RvP’s desire to please his inner child could have been the extra 100k a week MU were offering. Or am I being naive?

  49. RA says:

    Yup, I would go with you being a knave, Raddy. 🙂

  50. LB says:

    I am convinced that Ferguson had made up his mind that he was going to retire some time before he told the board and understanably wanted a last Hurrah, with this in mind and the credit he had at that club he knew that any budget would be made available to him. Given this, he was able to approach BSR and not only add an extra £100k per week to his wages, he could offer a contract length without any care in the world as to whether it sensible or not — Ferguson was going to be off; we, on the other hand, had to consider minor details like paying him £200k a week for five years, that’s three more years from now.

    The great shame, as we all know, was that BSR had to go and open his big mouth, if he hadn’t many more of us would have been more sympathetic to the fact that he was made an offer too good to turn down.


    LB, Ferguson bottled it.

    He is a man with many faults, to many to mention (sounds like a song), but despite all that hes very intelligent.

    He realised that once Arsene was afforded the financial resources to compete, the game was up.

    Rather than be embarrassed by Arsene, he chose to leg it.

  52. arnie says:

    Fabulous stuff, Rocky. Very very special. The way you have been spinning your web every Monday has been just amazing. But for me, today’s was very special. Absolutely spot on, as everyone else has said. Cannot disagree with anything, which is not often the case. And drawing lovely discussion for all around. Fabulous stuff.

    On Rambo, and in response to Evonne and several others. Yes, Cardiff supporters were great. But wouldn’t we do the same for Henry? It takes a great player and someone with a very big heart to achieve this. And Rambo has done this at a very young age. He is a superb statesman for the game, captaining his national side as well at such a tender age.

    Just as we were unlucky to have a destabilised squal every summer, most who have left us were unlucky as well. They must have had their reasons to leave, $, or whatever else. No ill feelings. If they have been p***ks, not showing respect to the club, we have to live with that. They have been worthy Gooners and are unlucky not to be part of the great journey. But above all, good riddance. I for one do not wish to see B$R or Na$ri return, not even for an unveiling of a statue or some other ceremonial thing.

    Cesc has never been disrespectful, and will therefore retain the respect of the fans as well, though I suspect he will probably not return as a player. But the shining star in this respect is Henry, always welcome, in whatever capacity, whenever!!!! And a couple of others as well, like the Good Dutch Guy!!!!

    What about Flamster? We welcomed him well!!!

  53. JanMan says:

    BR. Spot on. That little boy was saying to RVP, “Be a gready twunt, take the money, regardless of how AFC stood by you while you missed so many games due to injury”
    Yes, he had some great games and scored some great goals for us but he displayed his true colors with his move to Man Utd.

  54. Big Raddy says:

    Good Dutch Guy? Oh yes ….him 🙂

    At first I thought you meant Mark Overmars or Glen Helder


    Sorry guys, it may be true that a lot of players are spoilt pampered wankers, but this should not be held against them when they decide to leave the club.

    Football is a business, we have to accept that

    The only that matters is the Club. In this regard we have to be successful financially to afford us the resources to retain our players. If we have financial difficulties, we will continue to lose players, that is sad but unfortunately the reality.

  56. arnie says:

    On fixtures, I think it is just rub of the green. Look at Everton, They play away to ManUre on Weds and away at THOF on Sunday!!!!!

    We will survive. We have to ensure that fatigue does not set in quite that much. We have a healthy 4 point lead over everyone else at the moment, if come mid-Jan we are still TOTL, say ……, we are doing fantastic. On with teh show!!!!!

  57. arnie says:

    Raddy: 😀 😀

  58. arnie says:

    Raddy: I should have been more specific. But that got me to check up on Bergkamp. And here is what I found. I had not seen this earlier:

  59. Ah, those pundits, Owen, Shearer, the whole legion… You’ll see, even after we win the league they will probably still be saying we have no chance to win it.

  60. Big Raddy says:

    arnie. Thanks.

  61. chas says:

    Brilliant post, Rocky.
    Someone posted this photo of bsr on twatter the other day and it had a caption something like this…….
    “When the wrong person leaves your life, the right things start to happen”.
    This seems to apply to both bsr and the fat lesbian. Things have improved at THOF since their departures and it worked out ok for them too.

    I feel a little more forgiving to Cesc because he played so for so long and little reward.

  62. chas says:

    As regards Theo’s assists.

    Here is is first versus Fulham. Some sites do not count an assist if a player shoots and the GK parries it out only for another player to slot it home. All of the fantasy football sites do. As far as I’m concerned if Walcott doesn’t shoot, Podolski doesn’t have the opportunity to slam it home.

  63. chas says:

    The second assisting Giroud against the spuds was very clear cut .

  64. chas says:

    The third in the league was on Saturday for Rambo’s second.

  65. chas says:

    In the Champions League he has 3 also.
    The first was against Fenerbahce away for Gibbs.
    The second was in the same game having been fouled for Giroud’s penalty. Again some sites don’t give an assist for winning a penalty. All of the fantasy football sites do.

  66. chas says:

    Walcott’s third in the CL was against Fenerbahce at home for Ramsey and you could debate whether it came of him, the defender or a combination of both.

  67. chas says:

    I know the assists debate has been broached before.

    If the majority think it’s not worthy of recording then why don’t we just put a link up to Opta or Espn?

  68. Räsp says:

    Haha brilliant chas, I didn’t doubt you for a second – it was the others 🙂

  69. Räsp says:

    chas, it definitely is worth recording – especially next to the goalscorers as it is highly relevant, keep up the good work … please

  70. Big Raddy says:

    With that evidence even 26 would have difficulty making an argument

  71. Räsp says:

    chas, incidentally, where is the pic for your comment @ 5:12 re BSR?

  72. RA says:


    What has always troubled me a little is that as a club we have had a history of players wanting to leave at some point in their careers and each time it has left an unpleasant taste in the mouth.

    I don’t tend to memorise these events per se, so I am not giving chapter and verse, but I clearly recall Anelka saying he had an urgent appointment with Real, and from then on there has been a steady drip drip of players leaving with something of a cloud shrouding their departure,

    I think of Viera, Henry and the protected and unpleasant ‘discussions’ often conducted in the media, that accompanied their departures, and perhaps even that of Brady before them, and probably others too that I have forgotten about.

    It has worked the other way too, with the club making players leave before some thought they should, with the ‘high domed’ man being the most recent, but Arshavin, Eboue and Gilberto fall into that category too.

    What I am getting at is that maybe there is more to these ‘outgoings’ than meets the eye. Or I could be talking bollix. 🙂

  73. RA says:


    Your widget is ace and (don’t listen to the Rasper) 🙂 I and many others love the assists – it gives me something to prove I am right when my buddies argue with me.

    [Rasp is actually innocent — but it is fun to blame him!] 🙂

  74. arnie says:

    Chas: We want assists, we want assists, we want assists!!!!! 😀 😀

  75. RA says:


    You must do something about that stutter! 🙂

  76. arnie says:

    Oh dear, Redders, and I thought that was a pretty decent slogan!!!! 😦

    I think Rocky’s argument was spot on. Yes, it is not like the good old days: Gooner for ever!!!! and so on. Players will want to move on after a while. Generally, Arsenal has managed this process pretty well. Either ease out young kids off the Academy that will not make it to the first team, or sell top stars just at their peak or just after.

    However, two consecutive years the departures were disruptive. Arsenal and Arsene prefer to build a team, and building teams require continuity of key players. If such players somehow leave, it is a problem. You have to go back to the drawing board.

    That Cesc would leave was not a surprise, but his departure was a big blow. BSR’s departure was less so, perhaps because it was better managed. There was some speculation in the media that the departure was stitched a while before it actually happened. Anyway, as Rocky rightly said, one of the main reasons why we are doing so well this year is that we have not lost any key players.

    Good luck to those that left. You were Gooners all right, a pity you are not part of this fantastic journey, and good riddance! 😛

  77. evonne says:

    from the horses mouth
    Wenger about Welsh Messi:

    “Aaron Ramsey continues to perform very well. He has developed and matured, not only as a player but as a person as well. He had a very, very difficult time when we played in Cardiff in the FA Cup in 2009 but he was outstanding on Saturday.

    I would love to have had the ability of Aaron when I was playing! He can defend, he can attack, he can score goals – what more do you want? And he’s young – another quality that I have lost as well!

    When you look at his improvement in the last two years, why should he stop developing now? I think there’s a lot more to come from him.

    I was asked after the Cardiff game whether I would sell Aaron for £50 million and the answer is no, of course. We just want to keep our team together. We have suffered in the past because we had to sell players but now we are in a stronger position financially. “

  78. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Re your 5:32
    I don’t think we suffer these kind of losses more than other 2nd tier financial sides. With the exception of Paddy (and even here I’m not sure) I reckon they all left for more Wonga.

  79. MickyDidIt89 says:

    And if anyone else wants to argue with Chas, he’ll Heat Map Them 🙂

  80. RA says:

    Micky, 🙂 🙂

  81. chas says:

    I can’t find that 5.12 picture, Rasp.
    Unless you save it or it comes up on a google search it’s difficult to find. This’ll have to do.

  82. Talking about heat map, could someone “post” Soldado’s against Shitty ? Always a great laugh.

  83. Excellent picture Chas. So true !

  84. Well what a waste of money that was !. I bet £100 at William Hills on Tom Daley winning Gold at the ….World Muff Diving Championships !.

  85. RockyLives says:

    Good day all.

    What a fantastic banner Rasp – I feel humbled. Although today I feel more “foothills” than mountains but that’s another story.

    Thanks for some great comments folks (and some very generous ones).

    Reading them definitely makes me think that the psychological impact on the players left behind was probably greater than we realize.

    Young players like Theo, Jack, Aaron, Szcz etc must have thought “if our best players keep leaving, maybe I should be moving on too.”

  86. arnie says:

    We welcome challenging and inquisitive types!!!! Keeps Chas on his toes!!!! 😀 😀

    And regarding heat maps, two of my highlights on AA were the Soldado one (after the fantastic TotNumb show against Shitty) and the Szcz one (after he had too much Haggis, Neeps and Tatties for lunch)!!!!! 😀 😀 😀

  87. chas says:

  88. RockyLives says:

    Much as I’m happy to join in a bit of Robin-bashing, I don’t see his situation as being comparable with Ramsey’s.

    When BSR scored his first goal against us in ManUre colours he did not celebrate. But nevertheless the Arsenal fans spent most of the game telling him he was a rapist.

    So I’m not entirely surprised that he decided to celebrate a bit more ostentatiously this time round.

    Contrast that with Ramsey, who received warm support (not abuse) from the Cardiff fans.

  89. arnie says:

    No, Rocky, mountains are good! “Rocky Mountain High”. Well done Rocky, well done Rasp!!!! 😀 😀 😀

  90. Big Raddy says:

    Micky UK. TH and Bobby both took lower wages when leaving. Bobby was knacked but TH left due to family problems (and the chance to join some crap club in Spain where the weather would suit his arthritic knees and hips.)

  91. RA says:

    Actually, Micky, in my roundabout way I was inferring that ‘our’ players were no worse than all the others, as, for whatever their excuses, players all over the world do much the same thing – whether some leave us or some join us.

    It is a fact that the only constants are the fans – altho some players are fans too – but they tend to be the ones who stay at a club for life,

  92. chas says:

    As a gourmand, have you any suggestions for Frimmers?

  93. Hachis parmentier !

  94. chas says:

    Far too balanced.
    Rambo was booed on his first trip back to Cardiff in 2009.

  95. Big Raddy says:

    RL. I have no facts to back this up but believe Theo would have left if a club had come up with a high enough offer. AFC probably matched whatever was on the table.

    Then again, he might have AFC in his genes and loves the club so much he couldn’t wait to sign, though I doubt it.

  96. arnie says:

    Redders: A humble correction. “the only constants are the fans” and Arsene, of course!!!! 😛

  97. Big Raddy says:

    Frimpong has been poorly advised as to his kitchen flooring 😀

  98. RA says:


    Turn them into burgers – or throw them out and nip down to McDonalds.

  99. chas says:

    This was one of my tweets that was re-tweeted by the manc fan. 🙂

  100. RA says:


    Arsene is a fan — you heathen!! 🙂

  101. arnie says:

    ha ha ha, Redders, point well taken. 😛

  102. chas says:

    I wonder if he’s just going to have mince on its own? 🙂

  103. RockyLives says:

    I think he’s going to make coq au vin…

  104. RockyLives says:

    Haha Chas
    The fifth pic is brilliant.

  105. RockyLives says:

    While I’m being reasonable about our former players, there is always the argument that our financial model during the stadium-build years was entirely predicated on turning players into stars, then selling them for lots of wedge.

  106. Evening all, saw Lady Arse got in a bit of a set to with an apparently verified Jay Spearing yesterday, quite amusing……although it was quite sad to see Jay Spearing sign off every tweet with a hashtag….#J-Dog. Haven’t even come close to making it and too many youngsters act like they are legends.

  107. Hi all

    Thanks Rocky for a brilliant post, I read it at 4am, nodded sagely and haven’t had a chance to comment.

    One of our advantages – apart from our talented squad – has been the fact that we could start the season as an experienced unit. Although injuries decimated the squad early on there was a real air of camaraderie not seen for many years. This squad work hard for each other and there are no prima donnas 😉

    I would love Cesc to return to us to end his career but we really don’t need him at the moment. As for the other two – who?

  108. RA says:

    G Man,

    You do understand that some of us, well me and hashtag Rockstar, do not have a clue what you are talking about! 🙂

  109. Who wants to write a post for tomorrow – Rasp is itching to design another banner 😉

  110. Poor Frimmers, he’s obviously fallen out with Rob the chef ……… Rob teaches the guys to cook stuff.

  111. RA says:

    Even Nasri has some redeeming features!

    “Manchester City and former Arsenal midfielder Samir Nasri has sent his best wishes to his former Assistant manager at Arsenal Pat Rice after the Irish man was diagnosed with Cancer.’

  112. arnie says:

    Chas: that link points to Tortoises That Look Like Wenger as well. 😦

  113. dhakka09 says:

    another rocking post, Rocky. Kudos.

    Veering off topic, as much as I love the kaleidoscopically changing banners on the top, wouldn’t that create comfusion and disillusionment among new followers of AA, like for ex: “oops, I seem to have come to Rocky Monday blog instead of AA” 😛 (just musing, don’t stare-melt me to death plz 😦 )

    And regarding possible Cesc comeback, I think the boat has sailed on that regard. Even though Arsene may still love to see Cesc back in Arsenal colors, he couldn’t probably justify doing so now; as the need for another No.10 mid-fielder is nil/zilch/nada when we are overflowing with them already and all are quite good too.

    Onwards and upwards…..(wait, there’s no upwards, we’re already at the top 🙂 ) Just onwards then 😉

  114. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Look, I’d hate any of you to think I’d come over all liberal and sensitive and stuff, but I agree with Rocky on the dutch bloke. Yes, he’s a knob, but if you give it, then be prepared to take it.

    He didn’t celebrate the first goal. We called him a rapist, so he gave us two fingers after the second. Kinda fair enough really.

  115. chas says:

    I didn’t notice, but it still made me laugh when I looked.

    Did you see this? 🙂 look-like-arnie/

  116. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Someone twitter Frimpong and tell him he’s got the friggin’ frying pan upside down, and that to avoid illness, you must always cook raw meat still in the plastic wrapping 🙂

  117. chas says:

    Apologies for posting the wrong twatter picture boys.
    Rasp asked for a different one that wouldn’t have produced the bsr love-in.
    My bad for posting one which had already been ripped apart on twatter.

    bsr had every right to celebrate like a feckin psychopath.

  118. chas says:

    And post photos of himself with the Premier League trophy all over the internet at the end of last season.

  119. arnie says:

    Chas: 😡

  120. chas says:

    Rambo left Cardiff to better himself.
    Bsr left to do the same.
    There is no difference.

  121. evonne says:

    Owen Coyle left Wigan. Why?

  122. RockyLives says:

    Why did the cod leave the ocean for a transfer to the Arsenal Fish Bar?

    To batter himself.

  123. chas says:

    Is the BFG wearing short sleeved socks?

  124. arnie says:

    Chas: what you are saying is that BSR did not see a future in the team that Arsene was trying to build. Maybe, this is why Arsenal fans love him so much. 😀 😀

  125. RockyLives says:

    Watching those BFG moments v Cardiff reminded what a dirty little effer Frazier Campell is. Lots of nasty little fouls throughout the game of which the unpleasant (and deliberate) follow-through on Kozzer at 2.19 was perhaps the worst. Exactly the sort of foul than can leave a player with a broken metatarsal.

  126. Gööner In Exile says:

    As much as I dislike Piers Morgan the fact that RvP felt obliged to send him a picture of himself with the PL trophy signed Tears for Piers tells you everything you need to know about him.

    The reason he celebrated that goal in the way he did was the fact that he knows he was close to being part of something which he had previously said would mean so much more than “just moving somewhere to win a title”. The PL title may have justified his move, as LB says the 5 year contract that he was offered justifies it equally….let’s be honest before the 11/12 season how many of us would have applauded the renewal of a contract for someone who had such a patchy injury record?

    He could have been part of something better at Arsenal, he isn’t so he is a front bottom.

    Oh and on the whole “he told Ivan and Arsene he wanted out”….so what he had a year to run on his contract, the club didn’t have to do anything and owed him nothing.

    He made an announcement purely made to expedite a move away from the club and to lower the possible transfer fee.

  127. I’m sorry but I cannot go along with a BSR love-in and comparing his leaving us to Ramsey leaving Cardiff is ridiculous.

    BSR is a chump, he could have been an Arsenal legend, always welcome at THOF instead he chose the quick route to glory and collected a fat cheque along the way. I hope he doesn’t play again this season – bitter …. moi?

  128. Welcome to my club GiE 😆

  129. arnie says:

    GiE: 😀 😀 😀

  130. arnie says:

    “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams”

  131. Oh Frimmers 😆

    I could definitely help out some of these young men with their cooking skills. Brilliant idea peaches ……….

    Evonne – are you up for cooking classes in my wonderful new kitchen, safety in numbers 😉

  132. evonne says:

    Tom Daley has just announced that is in a relationship with a man. Great. Good luck Tom

  133. arnie – is that a reference to Frimpong’s cooking 🙂

  134. arnie says:

    Successful now or in the future, or even if never, Arsenal and Arsene have chosen to dream, to try and create a team that plays a fantastic game. That is all that matters, really. Otherwise, life is short, why bother!!!!!

  135. dhakka09 says:

    this is totally hilarious guys, kept me laughing for 5 minutes straight. Enjoy! 😀

  136. arnie says:

    Peaches!!!!!! Frimp’s cooking? why not? 😀 😀 😀

  137. Gööner In Exile says:

    Well played Tom… a sense of being brave enough to come out.

    Now when will the football world have an openly gay footballer that isn’t subject to abuse from the stands?

  138. chas – I see you tweeting Frimpong a recipe, that’s not going to help my plan get underway 😀

  139. evonne says:

    No Peaches, I H.A.T.E cooking and kitchens (even as awesome as yours) and you know it! Fair play to Frimpong for trying, brave lad 🙂

  140. chas says:

    Thomas Jenkinson is my favourite by a mile. 🙂

  141. chas says:

    Sorry peaches,
    I saw your comment afterwards.
    You know you’d just end up cooking for him anyway. 🙂

  142. evonne says:

    No GiE, there are still plenty of people that get upset about others bedroom shenanigans. Bizarre. I like a good homosexual joke, but cannot bring myself to care about anybody’s sexuality, too much effort

    Chas has some brill recipes for sandwiches

  143. Räsp says:

    dhakka @ 7:13, I would have hoped that the 2 Arsenal Arsenal shields either side of the text may have given a hint as to which site folks were visiting – but hey ho, you can’t please everybody so I’ve given up trying 🙂

  144. evonne says:

    end up cooking for Frimpong?? Now that would be terrible!!

  145. Be the mummy you mean 🙂

  146. arnie says:

    d09: fantastic. my favourite is Laurent Wenger!!!!! 😀 😀 😀

  147. arnie says:

    Rasp: I love the banners!!!!! A bit of added spice to the brilliant extravagance that is AA!!!!! 😀 😀

  148. Did anyone volunteer yet to write a small conversation starter for tomorrow ………. please

  149. dhakka09 says:

    Rasp: I can find AA even in my sleep, so no problem for me 🙂

    arnie and Chas: I’m afraid my favorite would have to be Mesut Walcott, hahaha 😀 😀 😀

  150. dhakka09 says:

    Folks, I hear buzz-buzz in gossip-world that Morata loan from Madrid is a done deal. All hoopla or some grain of truth in it?


    hahaha, i agree dhakka. Mesut Walcott would make a great comedian. He wouldnt even have to tell any jokes. hahaha

    The last time I saw a face like that was when Rentokill snared that Cockroach that was menacing me. hahaha

  152. jnyc says:

    ROCKY! one of the best posts ive read in a long time. U put alot into perspective, and very funny also.
    id just say we need to keep up what we are doing,obviously. But when it comes to city and chelsea showdowns, we must not give them more than a point.
    they are our true rivals and competition for the title. NOT liverpool. Spuds, or moyes united. They are going to be scrapping for fourth this year. We must be mature, unlike our home Dortmund performance. But of course, we can take three against any team.
    we bounced back from the United and dortmund setbacks very strongly, so im confident.

  153. RockyLives says:

    Evening Sniffer.

    Another night in alone?

  154. @gregory c{::::::) one baby, one bottle

  155. @peaches, I sent an article to the AA email address. Let me know if it works out for you.

  156. @Rocky personally I feel that getting rid of BSR was a good thing freed us from the cult of a single good player and put us on the road to a team that worked for each other.

  157. Thank you N5 – remember the rules, don’t engage he troll 😉

  158. Sorry, I couldn’t help it, it just put me in mind of a baby which need feeding, winding and burping. 😉

  159. Gooner in Exile says:

    Only two teams have beaten Borussia Dortmund at home in 2013/14.

    Only one team has beaten Bayern Munich at home in the whole of 2013

    Guess which team did both?

  160. arnie says:

    GiE: some how I have a feeling B$R or Na$ri were not part of that team, neither was Cesc. Am I wrong? 😀 😀

  161. Gooner in Exile says:

    You are not wrong Arnie 😀

  162. arnie says:

    GiE: Neither does this team have any self-serving selfish p***ck full of himself!!!! 😀 😀

  163. RockyLives says:

    Mea culpa too 😳

  164. RockyLives says:

    I had forgotten about your pre-Mesut wager on us winning the title.

    I stand corrected.

    You can stand with Terry in “we’re very sane really” corner. 🙂

    Nurse! Nurse!

  165. Gööner In Exile says:

    Actually it’s 34 last season and 31 this.

    ManUre are down 10

  166. BSR and Ramsey can’t be compared in my opinion. Cardiff is “just” Rambo’s boyhood club, it’s not the club that sticked with him through injury for years, and yet. So Cardiff isn’t what Arsenal was to BSR, and yet. Cardiff fans did boo him last time Arsenal played in Wales for a cup game, and yet. And I’m pretty sure Rambo won’t celebrate either if he scores in another game against them, and if he does, he probably won’t go “bodybuilder pose Booyah ! In your face !” type. BSR probably didn’t celebrate because it wasn’t well regarded and after he got that out of his system, he just shaw his true color last month. Also, Ramsey didn’t trashed Cardiff in the media after he left, just saying…

  167. Personally, I don’t hold a grudge against BSR for leaving us, that’s one man’s career and life, and he’s free to decide to leave if he thinks that is the best thing to do for his career. I hold a grudge against him for all that came after leaving and because, well, he’s a twat ! He’s not a twat for leaving, he’s a twat because he has no idea what respect is.

  168. Gööner In Exile says:

    Can’t say fairer than that Benjamin 😀

  169. The advantage of being on a different time line… Coming in after everyone went to bed, read everything, post a synthesizing comment of all the quality talk that has been going on among such great company (minus the trolls), and leaving before everyone wakes up… Have a nice day gooners all around the world !

  170. Kind of feels like Santa…

  171. RockyLives says:

    Same to you Ben
    I’m in Canada so maybe our TZs are catching up with each other 🙂

  172. 26may1989 says:

    Isn’t micky up yet? Lazy bugger……. 🙂

  173. chas says:

    From that Northcore chap……

  174. chas says:

    Motning, 26.
    Micky’s been up since 4.

  175. chas says:

    Off again.

  176. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Just sent in a very hasty conversation starter. Can’t stop now. Later.

  177. Big Raddy says:

    Morning All,

    Love the Arsene Koscielny.

    Must take hours of work and thought.

  178. evonne says:

    what I would REALLY like to know is how R$P feels now? Has he any regrets? Is he angry with Fergie? Will he come out and say that the current Arsenal team is awesome?

  179. Big Raddy says:

    evonne. Anyone who moves from Hampstead to Manchester and Rooney will have regrets.

  180. evonne says:

    be serious Raddy!
    When he watches how we play, how happy is the team and what great results to ice the cake – how does he feel? My guess is that he knows he looks like a proper front bottom now and tries to ease the pain by looking at his healthy bank balance. But he is hurting, I am sure

  181. evonne says:

    BR – sent you an email

  182. Räsp says:

    Morning all ……

    ….. New post ………

  183. Chas, I almost woke my baby up laughing with that Hippo thing !

  184. Hmm it looks like your website ate my first comment (it was
    super long) so I guess I’ll just sum it up what I had written and say, I’m thoroughly enjoying your blog.
    I as well am an aspiring blog blogger but I’m still new to everything.
    Do you have any suggestions for novice blog
    writers? I’d really appreciate it.

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