“The honours of a match which rarely produced a high standard of play should go to Sheffield United, whose defence held out for an hour and a quarter and who twice narrowly missed taking the lead before Drake scored.”
How typical? Where have we heard such disdainful disregard earlier, for a team that has fought its way to a trophy? Or even to fighting hard for a trophy? Plenty of times, yes, and always against Arsenal. That is not the surprise, at least to me. It is that such rubbish was also spewed way back in the mid 1930s.
What about the also rans, Manchester United, Liverpool, and now the oiled up knobbly joints Manchester City and Chelsea? Never. But why?
TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT provids a partial answer (April 18, 2014 at 10:55 am): “One thing that strikes me about your [GunnerN5’s] articles is how rarely you see a southern based club in the mix. Is that why Arsenal are the greatest club in the world? because we were the only team south of the M25 worth bothering about?”
Now that is some food for thought. Maybe the journo bias is largely a reflection of a north-south divide. The blog then generated the following discussion.
Arnie suggests (April 18, 2014 at 2:17 pm): “what also struck me as interesting was the whinging journos. This combined with Terry’s observation of Arsenal being the only club south of the M25 with both history and style. Maybe, this is still one reason why we are hated by journos such a lot. 😦 ”
GunnerN5 (April 18, 2014 at 2:41 pm): “Being one of the few Southern teams and then having the audacity to be successful was certainly our downfall among the predominately Northern journalists.”
arnie (April 18, 2014 at 8:54 pm): “The mystery is, why are the northern journos not so bile spewing towards the Chavs? Or, are they?”
Big Raddy (April 18, 2014 at 9:33 pm): “Because no-one cares about Chelsea. They do not excite or entertain and apart from the manager and the criminal behaviour of the Club Captain nothing about them is interesting.”
GunnerN5 (April 18, 2014 at 9:34 pm): “Maybe Roman Abramovich has them scared off?”
Arnie (April 18, 2014 at 9:56 pm): “Raddy: boring boring Chavs? 🙂 Yes, they play a boring brand of football, but have been reasonably successful in buying success. GunnerN5: scared by Abramovitch, or perhaps bought off?”
I believe money certainly plays a role, but there is another issue as well.
Chelsea, or if you prefer Abramovitch, was the first to experiment with just buying expensive players and finding out whether one can build a team out of these disparate players.
When Chelsea started doing this, this was not the dominant religion, or the leading mainstream idea. Real Madrid and Barca at least tried to build teams rather than put together big players and somehow organise them into a squad. Likewise Manchester United and Liverpool in England, Bayern in Germany and the leading clubs in Italy. Quickly this became the dominant religion of a society that firmly believes in the dictum that success and brilliance can be bought.
This belief appears to have been reinforced by the relative success of Chelsea and Manchester City, and by the millions that have passed the doors of many other clubs, most notably PSG. These days, most journos, indeed most football fans and clubs are followers of this religion. Alas!
Arsenal dares to be different and is therefore hated even more. It is the convenient punching bag, and target of cliches like “spend money Arsenal and Arsene”, “you cannot win anything with kids” and most foolishly “sack Arsene”.
Well, this new found momentum in the spend money rather than build team idea, together with the northern bias, has led us to a situation that anything Arsenal related that you can find on the backpages, Beebs Shite of the Day or TalkShite is plain and unadulterated bile. 😦
Do we care a flying fig? No we dont. But it is still important to know where this bile come from, and to defend ourselves from its smelly and slimy influence.
However, the above is only one opinion. Maybe even a loony barmy view. The jury is still out. Chums, what do you think?
written by arnie