Déjà vu …….. (and a tribute to dandan)

This has to be one of the most difficult reviews that I have ever written. Hearing of the sudden death of one of our stalwarts, dandan, left me and several others numb before the game.

We are a diverse but close community on Arsenal Arsenal. We endeavour to show respect to one another regardless of our differing views and despite another dismal performance by the team yesterday, one realises that there  is more to life than football.

As to the game I think all has already been said, but the fact is that we have now dropped twenty points out of a possible thirty three in our last eleven league matches .

Yes we have had multiple injuries and going to Everton was never going to be an easy game, but the team whoever plays was flat, lacked pace and power and seem nervous and disjointed, but above all a lack of confidence and with a Cup semi Final a week away and what seems on paper a reasonable run in it is not a given that we will sweep all aside. The Ox and Rambo are a plus and surely must start games but the inevitable happened with Flamini getting carded – he will miss the next two games. Oh how we miss Kos, but most of all we lack real leadership maybe on and off the field.

The very thing we have been famous for in the past was our ability to counter attack and score and that is the very thing that is now happening to us far too regularly

I feel it is not appropriate to single out any one player on this occasion but I will leave you with the post match interview from our manager.

Arsene Wenger had this to say:

“Was there a lack of fight? You could say that. It is a massive worry to lose a game like that.

“We have to analyse it well and come back with a different attitude, with more personality and stronger challenges. We have to go back to basics.”

Make of that what you will.

The last words must pay tribute to our friend Dandan …..

Dandan (Cliff) was a brick to me and sometimes a lifeline. We had different views about the direction the club was heading but had a mutual respect for one another.

We recalled GN5’s article only a few days ago about the week we won the double in 1971 but what he didn’t tell us on the site was that he missed the Cup Final as his father was tragically killed a day or so before the game.

Despite his own health problems and that of his dear wife Anne, he always tried to cheer me up and we spoke at length about a multitude of things, other than football. His brother is in remission and I know how much Cliff loved and cared for him. He was a decent man who will be missed by so many. I am not ashamed to say that I wear my heart on my sleeve and can be at times very emotional but this sudden death has knocked me sideways.

Anne will let me know when the funeral will take place and I know if any of you can attend, she would appreciate it.

R.I.P. Dandan, you made many friends across the world with your generous and positive attitude to life and the Arsenal.  Our thoughts go out to your wonderful family at this difficult time …….. you will be missed but not forgotten, COYRRG…………

kelsey

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85 Responses to Déjà vu …….. (and a tribute to dandan)

  1. Big Raddy says:

    kelsey. Excellent.

    Thank you for being so eloquent about a lovely man.

  2. Rasp says:

    Thank you Kelsey. Luckily I was working yesterday and so didn’t have to suffer watching the game, but I kept track of proceedings through various media. The sad news gave us all good reason for our hearts not to be in the game – but our players and management ….. what was their excuse?

    On any normal day after a disappointing defeat we’d all vent our spleen on the blog and some time later in the afternoon dandan would come on and explain to us in those sage words of his why it wasn’t half as bad as we’d been thinking … and then everything would be right with the world again.

    Today I’m just going to remember that the dandan way was the right way.

  3. GoonerB says:

    Well done kelsey. That was an excellent tribute to dandan. I know from the footballing and game analysis side you probably share many similar views to me but I personally feel that is for another day and another post. I get the feeling from your restrained match report that you also feel this way. There is no way imo to discuss yesterday without a big negative bias – but I dont want to bring that to the forum today.

    So to dandan.

  4. GoonerB says:

    I hate writing from phones. You read it back and realise the typos make you sound illiterate. Not that im not obviously…

  5. Big Raddy says:

    To those who are relatively new to AA, it was set up by a group of bloggers who had met on different sites. All continue to write on AA.

    Dandan was one of our founder members.

    Whenever Dandan’s little gravatar of his hero George Armstrong appeared we knew we would have a sane and valuable comment.

    What DD gave us was Football/Life balance. He will be much missed.

  6. Norfolk Gooner says:

    Well said Kelsey, a fine tribute to dandan, most of us knew him only through his writing, you have lost a personal friend, we will all miss him.

  7. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Thank you Kelsey

    Dandan was the most serene of posters. He was calmness and perspective personified

    From all accounts, a caring and gentle man who gave the utmost support and love to family and friends.

    I wondered this morning what he would say about yesterdays game and though he would put it in a much nicer way than me, I think the gist would be something like “Don’t get your knickers in a twist”.

  8. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Thank you Kelsey

    I have left my message to dandan’s family on yesterday’s note from his Son.

  9. Rasp says:

    GB – I’ve amended your comment 🙂

  10. MickyDidIt89 says:

    One thing that was very annoying about dandan, was that he made it so damn hard to be plain unreasonable 🙂

    Oh, and that for all these years, I’ve had to make an exception just for him and type his name with a small “d”. 🙂

  11. Rasp says:

    Exactly Micky, us lesser mortals just want to wallow in self-righteous indignation and then that spoilsport dandan would give us a gentle slap on the back of the legs and we’d have to behave like grown ups again 😆

    dandan … so good they named him twice 🙂

  12. GoonerB says:

    Micky i am never unreasonable. I just lack reasoning.

  13. GoonerB says:

    Thanks for revising my comment rasp. I may have to officially recruit you on a permanent basis.

  14. kelsey says:

    I think GN5 and dandan were quite similar in their general outlook to wards Arsenal.Maybe having seen it all, the many many lows together with the highs they always remained positive regardless of results,especially now. It is not in their nature,whilst Norfolk and I often say it like it is with no holes barred.

    I only use these four examples as we are amongst the older generation of supporters on here..

    It’s in ones geens regardless be it football or whatever.

  15. MickyDidIt89 says:

    True Rasp.

    He made me realize that there is zero chance of me actually ever growing up.

    Oh, and he had really annoying hair. Looked like a recently thatched Norfolk barn. With my receding hairline, I found it, frankly, provocative.

  16. 1derman says:

    Morning all,

    I haven’t posted for ages, but have been dipping in and out , enjoying your articles… I feel compelled to offer my condolences to Dandans family, may his soul rest in peace

  17. RA says:

    A very telling eulogy for DanDan, written by Kelsey, and echoed by so many others, both yesterday and today, and I am sure that if our friend were here today he would just say ‘thanks guys – now get back to the footie’.

    You see there was more to DD than his down to earth decency, integrity and extensive knowledge of football in general and of the club in particular.

    Yes, of course, everything said about him is perfectly true, but he was no wilting violet.

    He had strong views and was not slow to say it as he saw it, and to cross the line with regard to his beloved Arsenal was to risk his wrath, and those who insisted on seeing the worst in the manager, or the team or the club soon found out the hard way in his polite but firm responses.

    I have a somewhat mercurial temperament, only kept in check by the discipline of many years in a profession which demands a sanguine response to life’s upsets. Occasionally the hot headed me makes a break for freedom, and I have commented on a particular Arsenal mishap with a forthright manner.

    On more than one occasion over the years, DanDan took me to task over this, but a swift exchange of emails we soon put things to rights without any rancour.

    That is the abiding memory of DanDan I will carry with me – no nonsense, down to earth and a credit to AA, the club and to Gooners throughout the world.

  18. RA says:

    Now, Kelsey, what is all this about you keeping it in your jeans? Or were you talking about cabbage? 🙂

    — “It’s in ones geens regardless be it football or whatever.” (see 10:25)

  19. RA says:

    Micky,

    That photo of you sitting serenely on a station bench during your German sojourn with Big Daddy, which was later shown on AA , seemed to be of a super surfing doodley dude with an ample thatch of hair of your own. [OK, the ‘super’ bit was superfluous — see what I did there?]

    The tactic you have designed to make Chas your bestest friend, so that you can snaffle tickets to future European jaunts with Arsena,l is brilliant — I am now going to adopt a similar tactic to elevate 26M to the status of my “Even Bestier Bestest Friend’ , which he will no doubt swoon over, in order to elicit tickets to those self same games.

    You are undoubtedly Machievellian in your planning and I am determined to emulate you. 🙂

  20. SharkeySuresGhost says:

    My condolences to DanDans family.

    I never actually met DanDan but he always came across as a real gent whose life values set a great example to all who read his posts and comments.

    He’d clearly led a wonderful life, and reached a grand old age, so overall I’m not too sad.

    RIP DanDan, I’m glad to have known you.

  21. arnie says:

    Kelsey. great tribute to an absolutely fantastic man. 🙂 I did not know Dandan in person, and neither did I have any close exchanges with him. But I seem to have known him on the AA family for ages. Now, that is not literally possible because I came on board much less than a year back. But such is/ was the magnanimity of the man.

    I have been feeling a bit overwhelmed since yeaterday, now more so after reading Kelsey’s fantastic tribute. So I will (probably) lay low for a while.

  22. RC78 says:

    First of all, let me also pa tribute to Dandan. I am rather new to this forum but I can only add to the fellow Gunners here by saying that Dandan’s contributions to this website have been outstanding and extremely insightful and he will, of course, be sorely missed. My thoughts go to his family and may he Rest in Peace!

    Secondly, we are now in the usual April situation – fighting for the 4th spot. How did this happen?

    1- We have lost our defensive stability and concern If you remember well, my maiden post was about the need to strengthen above all our squad defensively. I was extremely worried especially after the Cup Game where we won against a League 1 team because we were extremely exposed. Few weeks later, we conceded tons of goals to our main rivals and it did not come as a surprise to me…

    2- Our thin squad is running out of steam on both end of the pitch and the injuries did not help us out. Yet, our management did not go in the Winter Window to get reliable options defensively (Kallstrom has hardly been used and his forte is mostly passing forward rather than tackling and battling in the middle of the pitch) nor offensively.

    3- The team has lost belief in itself in the past few weeks and seems complacent. This complacency has caught up with us and shows in big and small games. We are shaky defensively and we are impatient offensively. Other teams can sense that and take advantage of it – we have lost any type of intensity, which is just unacceptable.

    How do we salvage the situation and the season?

    1- Let us win the FA Cup by hook or by crook. Play the best and freshest team possible and let us, at last, land a trophy!

    2- Finish 4th! Finishing outside the Top 4 after leading the league for so long will just be shameful. We cannot finish outside the Top 4 – it is not an option so I hope that the players will get this sense of urgency back!

    What would I do to reach these two targets?

    I would play fresher players like Ox and Gnabry from the start and I may want to switch to a 4-4-2

    Anyways, this team has been well below par since 2014 and unfortunately, the pundits were right about our credentials

  23. kelsey says:

    Sharkey

    Thanks for your kind words .Dandan was just 70 years old, but you weren’t to know that.

  24. A fine eulogy from kelsey about AA`s voice of reason, dandan.

    As for our club, although I try and convince myself that`s it`s mostly down to the injuries, I am essentially struggling to try and think of anything positive from our current form and for the coming weeks !.
    Oh for some voice of reason…… I`m desperate dandan !.

  25. GunnerN5 says:

    I have no wish to dialogue football – it seems so meaningless.

    Well done Kelsey a constrained report and a considerate tribute. Although dandan and myself had experienced more of the Arsenal highs and lows than most on AA we had very different ways of expressing our feelings towards negative views about our players and team performances. dandan would be the modicum of decorum and gently rebuke folks whereas I would (and still do) act like a lit tinderbox.

    You will be missed dandan – Rest in Peace.

    PS:

    I hope you will become Arsenals Guardian Angel.

  26. SharkeySuresGhost says:

    Kelsey, thanks for info.

    70 is not old at all 😦

    I guess its the wisdom with which he always spoke that made me think of him as a wise old turtle…like the 100 yr old ones in cartoon s my kids watch.

    He just seemed to have the relaxed calmness of a man who really had seen it all.

    I actually visited an elderly fried yesterday who is also known as DanDan to his family. He is 85 and was in very good health up until Xmas, but is recovering well with only one or two small complaints remaining.

    Maybe I’ve subconciously always linked the two Dandans age wise.

    Can I also expand my condolences to read ‘family and friends’, so as to include you and I’m sure hundreds of others.

    Thanks

  27. RockyLives says:

    Very nice tribute Kelsey.

    This article, written by dandan last season after our defeat away at the Spuds, sums up the man for me.

    Everyone told us we were finished and had no chance of top four. The “Wenger Out” brigade were in full voice. Even loyal supporters were feeling frustrated and hurt.

    We were all in need of some perspective and dandan came up with this:

    “Seasons in the sun
    March 12, 2013

    Last evening whilst having my own late night concert featuring the music of my younger days, I came across this Terry Jacks number. I was immediately struck by the relevance of the choruses of this song, to Football fans everywhere and Arsenal fans in particular.

    We had joy we had fun we had seasons in the sun. But the wine and the song like the seasons have all gone

    One only has to read this blog, to see these sentiments reiterated regularly in so many ways.

    This is the song of the we haven’t won anything for years brigade, the time for a change, we can’t look back or live in the past supporters, desperate for more trophies.

    We had joy, we had fun, we had seasons in the sun. But the hills that we climbed were just seasons out of time.

    Written for the “Wenger got lucky, he arrived at the right time and inherited a back line that won him trophies and he couldn’t recognise a centre back today if one fell on him”

    We had joy, we had fun, we had seasons in the sun. But the stars we could reach were just starfish’s on the beach.

    We never aimed high enough took the easy pickings then surrendered any further progress, by swapping our best players for a new ground and a yearly profit.

    Amazing what you can find in a song especially if like me and many older supporters who come on here, you’ve had Joy, you’ve had fun and those seasons in the sun, rain and the snow, and a lifetime of memories you wouldn’t swap or change for anything.

    Because it is that mixture of triumph and disaster that has made Arsenal the club we love above all others, secure in the knowledge that it has not yet been defiled or turned into a personal plaything by a Johnny come lately with questionable motives or finances.

    Written by dandan”

    dandan, I am sure, is dispensing his wisdom now at the great Gunners bar in the sky…

  28. RA says:

    It is sobering to read through the other blogs and see just how stunningly anti-Arsene the comments are, almost without exception.

    Now if I remember correctly just before the game we were 7 points behind ‘Pool who were top. That was not earth shockingly bad – was it?

    We lose to Everton and ‘Pool and Chelsea win and suddenly we are 10 points and 8 points behind respectively. Gosh – how terrible.

    Now almost everyone is yelling for Wenger’s blood, or at least that he should retire, or the Board should sack him — no wait — perhaps he should commit ritual Hari Kari or is that Sepuku in front of the Emirates crowd?

    I was disappointed yesterday, and I was dejected about the team and AW’s seeming inability to rouse them, and said so, but the sort of reaction I have been reading out there today is out of all proportion.

    If that sort of thoughtless reaction is what is required to be a fan — I guess I am not one.

  29. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    These sort of people don’t deserve to be associated with Arsenal Redders. They wouldn’t even know which way to pass the port.

    In my very biased opinion, Arsene Wenger has never had a bad season managing Arsenal. Every year he has maintained the Clubs position in the top four, often in very trying circumstances.

    And he has performed all this by playing some great football and keeping true to the standards and dignity required to manage Arsenal Football Club.

  30. arnie says:

    I have been seriously thinking that fans should take some responsibility for the trials and tribulations that the club, the manager and the players go through, and the bile that is directed towards them. And fans has to be in the collective. Hence we (on AA) have to take some blame as well. For no fault of ours, but there you go! Sad. 😦

  31. RC78 says:

    I think that indeed some have gone too far about Wenger. I am in two minds about him staying for a longer period of time at the club because it seems that the team is not progressing well in the last 3 years. We are constantly in the same position in every competition we play and this is rather upseting. At the same time, I do not see anyone out there that could be available and possibly make things better at Arsenal, except maybe Hiddink…

    Anyways, I love AW and I hope he stays for at least another two years and I would really love it if he would hire an Assistant Coach that could replace him in two years but someone with a great future, an understudy that would be ready to take the club in a new era. Ideally, someone like Bergkamp, Overmars or Henry…

    I also believe that we need to add experience and steel to our squad. We need to bring proven players and players that will sweat until the last minute for our beloved team!

    At this stage, all the flags are up:

    – Physically, the team is not up for it
    – Mentally, the team has lost belief
    – Financially, we are at big risk if we do not qualify for CL
    – Attractiveness, the team is not playing beautiful footie and is not winning so we may not attract good enough players.

    I hope that we are going to come out of our slump as of NOW…and that AW will be able to bring the best out of his team until the end of the season, hoping that it will be enough to get a Cup and a 4th place! Come on Gunners!

  32. kelsey says:

    David Dein was in the Stands at Everton.He doesn’t go to many Away games these days.

    Is there a clue in there somewhere 😉

  33. Prince says:

    😦 Really sad to hear. My thoughts and prayers go out to dandans’ family and loved ones.

    “missed, but not forgotten” ….thanks, Kelsey

    R.I.P dandan.

  34. arnie says:

    Where the club is responsible is in raising ticket prices to the level where trophy hunters have been invited in hordes. They pay big money and they feel that they can therefore slag the manager and players. Most importantly, this restricts access for more loyal fans.

    However, where the club has acted with respect and dignity is in paying a deaf ear to the bile-spewers. This is different from other clubs in the EPL, and I am glad thuis is the case.

  35. Rasp says:

    Hi arnie, I’m not quite sure what you mean in your @ 2:46?

    Today’s not the day – but perhaps you’d like to expand on that point in the future.

  36. Rasp says:

    Dandan had a unique ability to calm everything down and create the space for others to see sense – ironically his untimely passing has served that purpose for just one last time.

    I love Rocky’s suggestion that he is “dispensing his wisdom now at the great Gunners bar in the sky…” – I shall keep that picture in my mind every time a dark cloud descends … thanks dandan 😛

  37. stevepalmer1 says:

    Afternoon all,
    I have never read any of dandans post and didn’t know him, but he sounds like an old Gunner who understood the word patience. Sadly to day, so called supporters have only memories that only stretch to nine years. it seems to me that this man knew what waiting for success was all about, My sincere condolences to his family, I like to think that as an old Gunner goes out a new one is born, hopefully to support the way dandan did.

  38. arnie says:

    Rasp: “I’m not quite sure what you mean” Probably bollix, as usual, 😛 but will do. 🙂

  39. Rasp says:

    Thanks arnie, I have a 1st class honours in Bollix, so I should be able to understand 🙂

  40. […] Arsenal Arsenal’s review of the game included this statement: “Yes we have had multiple injuries and going to Everton was never going to be an easy game, but the team whoever plays was flat, lacked pace and power and seem nervous and disjointed, but above all a lack of confidence and with a Cup semi Final a week away and what seems on paper a reasonable run in it is not a given that we will sweep all aside.” […]

  41. Reddawn says:

    Thank you Kelsey and all the other members of AA for the wonderful sentiments regarding the sad demise of Dandan. I can not put into words anything more meaningful than what has already been said.
    Please accept my deepest condolences for his family and all those who contribute to such great forum.

  42. VCC says:

    Thank you Kelsey.

    What wonderful words about a man so loved in the ArsenalArsenal world.
    God bless dandan.

  43. Adrian says:

    Rest in peace, good sir.

  44. allezkev says:

    Just heard the news.

    Please pass on my condolences….

    RIP DanDan…

  45. Gööner In Exile says:

    Well handled Kelsey, as others have said results like yesterday were when we needed DanDan, sad that we will not see those wisdoms again.

    Kelsey I don’t want to burden you, but as you seem to have contact I wondered whether we could ask DanDans family if there was a charity they have nominated for donations in his memory rather than flowers etc. judging by his comments I am sure there would have been more than a couple close to his heart.

    Rasp perhaps we could have a In Memory of…. in the widgets?

  46. Rasp says:

    Hi GiE, thanks, we’re looking at several ideas. Maybe we should email one another?

  47. Gööner In Exile says:

    Rasp I’m sure between the co founders of AA you will come up with something more than suitable.

  48. Irishgunner says:

    Again RIP Dandan and my condolences to his family. ‘Know’ him many a year from conversing on the blog. Regrets now I haven’t blogged as often in the last year but hopefully I can be half the Gooner he was and always will be, because Once a Gooner, Always a Gooner!

    If ye do decide on a tribute can you guys let me know please, I’d like to contribute.

    Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam.

  49. neamman says:

    How would Liverpool do without Sturridge, Gerrard, Agger and Henderson..which is roughly what we face. How would Chelsea do without Hazard, Terry, Oscar and Schurrle?
    Our injuries are terrible and too me that’s the damn issue. WHY do we always top the injury list each year?

    That and not having a real on field leader.. the closest we have is Flamini.. I don’t mind losing,.. but how we lost was unacceptable.

  50. Gööner In Exile says:

    Neamman I don’t think any of us can disagree with that.

    I posted a link to a podcast yesterday where a highly sought after medical bid revealed we had employed him at the start of the season to help our medical and fitness staff with new exercises. The guy is apparently employed across a large variety of sports by OlympicAssociations, NFL teams etc etc.

    So the club recognise that there is an issue. But we clearly need to do a bit more than employ someone for a few weeks.

  51. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Neamman

    So agree about the on field leader.

    Arsene has always. and wrongly, believed in the “we’re all leaders” rubbish. When the players stop playing for the manager or he is not a natural motivator, it’s your Adams, Terry, Gerrard type who keeps it together.

    Oh, and KELSEY OUT.

  52. chas says:

    Well done on a fitting tribute to dandan, Kelsey.

    Here’s the latest pic of Charlie Mackey (I know dandan would approve).

  53. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Who is Charlie Mackey?

  54. Gööner In Exile says:

    Cute Chas….a shocking reminder of what we will be going through for a second time, George is so easy to look after right now, but soon we’ll number back to two hour intervals of nappies and feeding and waking up and crying and winding……

    All worth it tho…….I think

  55. Big Raddy says:

    Morning All,

    Every team wants a leader. Take Gerrard out of L’pool and who have they got? Or Spurs? or Chavs sans Terry/Lampard? Leaders with the quality we need are few and far between.

    Another horse racing analogy – the top teams are like the fastest horses which run on the flat and in summer. Jump horses are the real characters – tough battlers who keep going over difficult obstacles in the worst of weathers.

    Reading back that is a crap analogy but you get the idea 😀

  56. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Interesting analogy Raddy 🙂

    Either the Manager or Captain have got to really, really hate losing, and show this emotion. Right now, we have neither.

    For this reason, Flamini would be first name on my team sheet.

  57. chas says:

    If he wasn’t suspended. 🙂

  58. chas says:

    He’s my great nephew.

  59. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Shit. Does he miss the semi?

  60. Big Raddy says:

    So let me get this right.

    We need a leader. We have one in Flamini. Flamini was on the pitch on Sunday.

    Explain

  61. kelsey says:

    I was listening to Gary Neville last night and he talked a lot of sense.

    He and others said that this loss at Everton was worse than any of the other big Away loses in the fact that especially in defence our players were not playing as a unit and were leaving huge gaps on the pitch. A loss of concentration and pace and no real drive.

    The question is why ? They seemed to go through the motions as if it was a game of not much importance or I hate to say it has Wenger lost the touch to really motivate the players anymore or do they just not listen.

    We can’t always say it is because of injuries but that must have an impact.Something is drastically wrong. If we had given our all and lost 2-1 so be it,but to wait until we were three nil down to make subs was qrong IMO.

    As a team tactically we are easy to play against and more and more teams are learning this.
    I felt in the last 25 minutes of the game that Everton were in so much control,they were actually takeing the piss out of us.
    This is a team that was top of the league for many weeks this season.

    It is alright saying the Ox should start as he is direct but our defence or non defence is becoming quite alarming.

    Flamini is not a leader but his expressions shows he is always up for it,there is a subtle difference.

  62. Big Raddy says:

    kelsey. Not much to argue with apart from your dismissing the injury list to KEY players and this …

    “I felt in the last 25 minutes of the game that Everton were in so much control,they were actually taking the piss out of us.”

    You mean when Ox hit the bar and Sanogo scored a perfectly legitimate goal , and Howard was forced to make a couple of superb saves and we were camped in their half? 😀

  63. arnie says:

    motning, all.

    Chas: lovely photo of junior Vines 🙂

    We need a leader yes, and preferably someone who would be with us for a few years.

    How are injuries someone else’s fault? It is not possible otherwise that we have to give the same excuse every year. If we have high injuries, the solution is simple. Have a larger squad and more rotation. We do not do that.

    We have played the same forward and played by and large the same defence throughout the season. This had consequences. If Giroud and/or Mert had been injured, it would be partly down to fatigue.

  64. kelsey says:

    sorry I meant for a good part of 25 minutes 🙂

    I could answer that apart from Ramsey’s 13 goals before Xmas that the amount of goals from our other attacking midfielders has been poor.
    Walcott is a huge miss purely through his pace and goals and of course doesn’t give us the option to use the flanks properly.
    If you get Sagna and either Gibbs or Monreal bombing up the field others should cover for them in case of a counter attack.

    I
    reserve judgement with Sanago but surely now is not the time to start experimenting at this stage of the season.

    The results speak for themselves.

  65. Rasp says:

    Morning all,

    Dismissing words like ‘freefall’ and ‘crisis’, I would like to see us try something radical and send out the players who are really hungry for success.

    I’d start with The Ox, Gnabry, Sanogo, Jenkinson and Kallstrom in the semi – what have we got to lose? And if they do well, start them in the league games too.

  66. arnie says:

    Raddy. Yes, agreed. players who are hungry for success and who have their heart in the team’s future.

    Either they are professionals whose medium run incentives are tied in with the club. They are desperate Arsenal qualify for CL next year, plus keen to impress their national team coaches.

    Otherwise they are Gooners whose heart is in Arsenal. They are part of the project. I guess we have too few of the later variety, alas, and this is to our detriment.

  67. arnie says:

    And yes, terms like “freefall” and “crisis” do not help. We need to be progressive, always, but particularly when the chips are down

  68. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Morning

    There is no major crises. A loss of confidence, all stemming from major injuries has dented belief. We will recover.

    I challenge any of you to maintain full belief if you have a setback. A shoddy experience in the bedroom, defeated by a 12 year old kid at chess, caught at work reading “how to make women like you” etc.

    None of these things have happened to me. I am just them as examples

  69. arnie says:

    It seems the only way to get some rest as an Arsenal player is if one is injured. I hate to ask, but conversely, is that one of the reasons why Arsenal has more injuries? Alas. 😦

  70. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Raddy
    Re your Flamini started on sunday comment.

    Ok then, we’re buggered if The Wiganers are battlers 🙂

  71. arnie says:

    I am ashamed to ask this question, but I have done so. 😦

  72. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    We have been very unlucky this season. The only thing that I cant get my head round is why we have gone the whole season relying on Giroud. Why the club didnt get another striker, some one who could get behind defences and posessed of decent technique, I just dont know.

  73. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Kelsey

    I don’t think Arsene ever has been a good motivator. I just don’t see the evidence. His great sides had born winners and leaders. This side doesn’t, and I have a nasty feeling they are looking around for excuses rather than taking responsibility.

    Yes, they can blame the injuries, and getting the likes od Aaron will help the group, but the moment they start to blame the Manager, he and the team are in big trouble.

    In other words, once the Manager has lost the dressing room, it’s all over for him.

    Of course, I hope this is not the case.

  74. arnie says:

    Terry: rest assured, none of us know the answer. For me, at the very least, another striker could have provide some rotation for Giroud, and then we could see whether the hold-up style worked better for us, or a conventional striker.

  75. arnie says:

    And Kelsey: if indeed Dein was at the Everton game for a purpose, I do not like the smell of it. Arsene has to bring us out of the rut, Martinez can be a short term stop gap at best. Longer term, we need a fresh face, hopefully a complete unknown. We are The Arsenal, we do things differently. 🙂

  76. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Eh Arnie?

    How would Martinez not be a fresh face, and how “unknown” should Arsene’s successor be?

  77. kelsey says:

    I agree with that micky.

    We seem to be split amongst ourselves on here but I am sorry that to an extent Wenger is responsible if he can’t motivate a team on a regular basis especially at Everton.
    Squad size is one thing but quality of bench is far more important.
    We might pull through this hopefully,win the semi this weekend but we could be playing catch up and have a real fight for forth.

    I can only hope but these past two months we are so predictable and firing blanks, can we suddenly up not one but two gears.

  78. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    I find it hard to think of an excuse arnie. We bought Giroud two years ago for gawds sake and in between we took back Bendtner from loan and got the baby Sanogo?

    I know we tried to get Suarez, but we didnt.

    I am quite enjoying this moaning. Is this the feeling doomers get?? Think I might do this more often. hahaha

  79. arnie says:

    OK, off now, back laters. My travels have started again, after today I will only make fleeting appearance for the next week or so.

    Hopefully, it will be a nice semifinal, and hopefully I will manage to catch a stream in between my travels.

  80. arnie says:

    Nothing will happen in a hurry. Let us see. There have been major changes in the development setup. If this works we will have a definitive answer. My heart says, that is the plan. I am not the first to say this. Was it Norfolk, or was it LB? But that is my gut feeling. Jonkers. 🙂

  81. kelsey says:

    arnie.

    Why would Martinez actually want to leave Everton. He has done a remarkable job on a fraction of the money available.

    I think but don’t know for sure that Dein was looking at our players and might be identyfing with Wenger our weaknesses.

  82. Rasp says:

    Morning all ….

    …….. We have a stonking new post ………..

  83. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Kelsey

    An extra two mill a year might do the trick 🙂

  84. TotalArsenal says:

    The voice of reason and perspective has sadly passed away. Rest in peace Dandan.

  85. I am in fact happy to glance at this webpage posts which carries lots
    of useful facts, thanks for providing these information.

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