Back at London Colney ……..

Morning Gooners

Here we are, a couple of days after what I consider a bad result, our players are back and the mood must be a bit glum. They won’t see The Emirates until our next home game so will have entered our training ground facility, seen the faces of the staff there and will know what they are thinking.

Yes its as clear as mud really, no one has to say anything to them as they know this was a game that should have been won quite easily. We should in all honesty be back with 3 points under our belt, a clear conscience and in a frame of mind to go to Stamford Bridge and battle for a London Derby.

The staff at London Colney would have shown dismay on their faces, every travelling player would have been ashamed, whether they played or not they would also be ashamed of themselves as a group. Not many would have said too much to Mr Wenger, of course he would walk in the door with his usual smile ‘Morning Miss’ ‘morning all’ and off he would have trotted to his office where he probably had an inbox of things he has to do.

Yes Mr Wenger, to all the staff at Colney, is Mr Arsenal, he is not a man they would question to his face or ask him why he picked the team he did, they would carry on as if nothing has happened and the day would have started like any other.  The day for the players would have started with a gathering of the players, the conference room would have been filled and the door would have been shut. The staff of course would be discussing among themselves, medical people and trainers physio’s and secretaries would be silently saying to one another, they looked a little glum didn’t they.

Inside the room would be silence, the manager would be out in front of the players with Mr Bould standing by his side. The Manager would start with a smile to put the players minds at rest, he would have a pile of papers stacked up in front of him  but Mr Wenger would just say, We will chat later, but for now we will just have a light training session, anyone carrying knocks please report to the medical centre, any other questions, no, lets begin.

Another day will start at London Colney, Wenger will not dwell on this defeat, he doesn’t feel negative vibes will help these wounded players, he would want them out running up and down and kicking balls, later he will start his build up of the weekend.

Friday is the day he faces the press, so the morning is busy for him, he will now know who is available for the next match, and it will be down in his notebook.  His words to the press will be about the injured and who is available but the team he has picked is still inside his jacket. He will be quizzed about his tactics and there will be many O’s and funny sounds but not too much info.

Saturday morning will start early for the players and wherever they have stayed overnight Wenger will have a room where he will announce his team for the day. He will run through his tactics and where he sees Chelsea’s weaknesses and strengths , this meeting will go on for an hour or so, and then breakfast. Players have set routines and Wenger will not upset that routine. The day will start out military fashion and the players will all know the routine.

They will arrive at Stamford bridge with time to change and warm up, Bouldy will run them through the orders, Wenger will have his suit on looking the bee’s knee’s and he will be interviewed. There will be a few mumbles and smiles for the cameras and the team will line up in the tunnel. Nervous tension will be prevalent, they will look at the Chelsea line up and imagine the game they will have. The word goes out that they can enter the fray and they grab a mascots hand and out they walk. The crowd go mad and the handshakes begin, 2 minutes later they take their positions, many will look up to the heavens and beg their God to stand by them, many will cross themselves and others will back slap their buddies, and then the whistle blows. Just another game in a very long season. In ninety minutes time the players will walk off and supporters will go home, who will be happy and who will be sad is any ones guess, but one more game will have been played, points shared won or lost will all become clear after the 90 minutes, lets hope they are ours.

Steve Palmer

 

 

 

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145 Responses to Back at London Colney ……..

  1. Red Arnie says:

    Steve, my friend, how dare you compose a fine rant and b***r off before it is published? 🙂

    slacker! 🙂

  2. David Brooks says:

    I think its time we had a gigantic whip round to buy the chavs out and close the whole festering sh*thole down… for the good of football

  3. That’s a rant? Nah! That’s not a rant.

    This is a rant….WHY HAVEN’T WE GOT A RANT?

    😀

  4. mickydidit89 says:

    Thanks Steve
    Love the image of everyone from cleaners to building maintence staff at Colney all slouching about with long faces 🙂

    Oh Eddie
    Just read your comments. Why oh why couldn’t you have rocked up earlier. Calling Ant ‘n Duck a “disgrace” was quality work 🙂

  5. mickydidit89 says:

    David
    Much sense in what you say

  6. Red Arnie says:

    the rant is against the “same old same old” routine! 🙂

  7. Red Arnie says:

    a much more exciting conference room

  8. kelsey says:

    Wait till you read my rant 🙂

  9. stevepalmer1 says:

    Morning all,
    Just got in and logged in, Bit surprised to be posted as i only wrote it a little while ago.

    I don’t like to see the same post go on for days and days, but i also know it takes people like us to help out to change that, Of course i have been posted before and sometimes it has been on a friday which the site has labled Rant Friday.

    My post has been misconstrued., I wanted to show you that Arsenal football club carries on whatever the results, Football clubs are a business and they run whether results are good or bad.

    The Arsenal machine rolls on, we will still be watching on match day many will attend and others will catch the game on streams or pubs but thousands and thousands will be interested in the result.

    Supporters will have been hurt with our result in mid week many will have axes to grind many will pass the blame Manager or player but still they will be looking for the next result should it be good Arsenal will once again have a happy support should it be bad will only set the touchpaper alight again, but still the moans will echo out until the next game.

    Rant Friday is set up for you, yes you, to vent your feelings about the club you support, its not always about the authors views its your site and your views. Give it your best shot, but you know you will be watching the same as me for our next result. You want a rant Start one.

  10. Red Arnie says:

    come on Kelsey, we are waiting! 🙂

  11. LB says:

    “For the good of football”

    Rolf.

  12. Red Arnie says:

  13. Red Arnie says:

    Beebs:

    Arsene Wenger refuses to be drawn on whether he’ll shake hands with Jose Mourinho on Saturday. He tries to defuse constant talk about their uneasy relationship.

    “Look – too much attention is paid to it. People come to football to watch football – everything else is secondary,” he said.

    But his unease is obvious as he’s repeatedly quizzed about Mourinho. “I have nothing more to say about this,” the Frenchman added.

  14. GoonerB says:

    Thanks Steve, sorry but I can’t think of anything to rant about at present. I will come back with a rant later if anything inspires me.

    I think I will just put up what I think is our best current 11 :

    Cech
    Bellerin, Gabriel, Kosciely, Monreal
    Coquelin, Cazorla
    Ox, Ozil, Sanchez
    Walcott

    It aint half bad is it? On top of that you can have a bench with any of Ramsey, Giroud, Campbell, Debuchy, Gibbs, Mertesacker, Ospina; all petty much top internationals. When Welbs and Jack are back and fit they may make a claim to being in our strongest 11, Welbs as striker maybe and Jack (controversially for me) from the attacking right side.

    That team above for me beats Chelsea providing we take any of the first couple of early chances that come our way and get ahead. Then we need to control the game and make sure Bellerin and Coquelin stay on their feet and shepherd Hazard giving nowhere to go as he rarely moves to the right of the pitch. We have the pace to cause them to havesome of Chas’ kittens on the counter anyway.

    We will also need Dean (tall order possibly) to get the refereeing spot on. Chav’s often get in with some x rated tackles early on when the ref is almost thinking “it is too early for cards”. If Dean gives the yellow cards that are deserved early rather than just after some imaginary time frame then it will knock them a bit.

    Dean will also have to preferably not buy the manufactured fouls on Hazard, the ones where he steps across players away from the line of the ball and makes it look like he is brought down. The reality is that it is deliberate obstruction from Hazard but the refs go the other way as he is very clever with it. I think this is a tall order as no ref has gone against Hazard yet, which I find strange as they must watch replays later and realise they are constantly getting conned.

  15. GoonerB says:

    Oh and if all that happens I am 65% confident 🙂

  16. mickydidit89 says:

    Hi GB
    Yip on the strongest XI, although while I’d continue to start The Ox, he does need to make his mark this season. Fingers crossed, cos I love him.

    As for Chelsea tomorrow, I really am confident. AW will start Theo central, and their aging defence will crack. Let’s face it, it’s now or never against The Chavs.

  17. stevepalmer1 says:

    Morning GB
    I wouldn’t be at all surprised if Raddy doesn’t pick the same line up, i feel his stat will be lower.

    I feel i cannot argue with much of that comment, and the bit about the referee nearly had me. the start of that piece where you mentioned Dean, had me visualising another Dean but quickly showed me which one you meant.

    I feel you are on the right track as far as decisions are concerned, we do tend to get some harsh ones, and in the week i felt the bent Croats had thrown a bung. I would imagine that Ref has now got a nice Merc sitting in his garage, i only hope he lets Merts test drive it

  18. Eddie says:

    micky – couldn’t do it earlier, was asleep. But I am happy to copy and paste the comments here. Mind you, Kelsey is about so he’ll do the honours 🙂

  19. mickydidit89 says:

    In the immortal words of Chas “I’m a Disgrace” Duck, it’s win tomorrow or The Rugger goes on 🙂

  20. mickydidit89 says:

    Eddie
    You were at your very best this morning, and that’s epic 🙂

    Just spoke to Crystals. The man is a quality realist 🙂

  21. Eddie says:

    Sorry Steve, but your rant lacks the cutting edge, the REAL frustration. You are far too philosophical for my liking

    Here is what I think on a Rant Friday:

    We will not win at the Bridge, I can promise you that. The whole team is a flash in the pan. On rare occasions they outperform themselves and give us hope. On most occasions they are nothing special. take away Santi and Sanchez and we are pants
    We are not spoilt brats, the team are

    is it rant Frinday? Right!
    you think that last TW was bad ha ha blooy ha. Brace yourself for the next summer and an exodus. We have been there before, remember? A couple of players short of solid squad. But we didn’t strengthen the squad, fought with depleted team for the 4th and waved good byes from June till September

    you are not going to pacify anybody by photos of cute dogs, cats and children chas. We know you don’t care if we win or lose because your support is mainly about travelling, taking pics and getting pissed. you are a disgrace! I will buy your season ticket and support the team properly,cold stone sober

  22. kelsey says:

    Pre season the experts/pundits mainly agreed on the back of the way we finished last season,that we could and should challenge Chelsea for the title,hardly a mention about City.

    Of course the condition was to strengthen the team further not just buy a good keeper.

    Something has gone drastically wrong we look for most part a disshevelled unit and I said it last season that the game has passed Wenger by.Stats, countless stats are always brought up but in nearly 20 years the game has changed, but he hasn’t in these past few seasons.
    .
    AW knew what was needed,money was there,moreso than ever before and I cannot accept that players were not available every time he enquired.

    We have to base our aspirations not on a team to finish third or forth but one who can really challenge.

    Coquelin wasn’t a master plan.because of injuries he was recalled, luck again, but if he doesn’t play we have the ageing Ateta who can last about 10 minutes.

    Rosicky and Flamini should have been released but the big surprise is Ospina.He looked like a version of a bad Fabianski the other night and don’t kid yourself Dynamo are not a great team
    .
    Gabriel is a good acquisition and mertesacker needs to go at the end of the season.

    Walcott has shown on Wednesday and against Stoke that given a threw ball, one on one he is a danger and can score.Play him infantasy one touch football he gets lost and blown out of the way.

    Then there is Giroud.I am convinced if we could have found someone more clinical in the Summer he would have been off,probably in part exchange. I know he gets a lot of stick, but when push comes to shove he doesn’t perform in vital games.

    We have long term injuries to Welbeck and Wilshere, add one more and the squad doesn’t look that great.

    Debuchy wasn’t a bad buy but the unexpected happened and that was Bellerin, who will improve as the season progresses.Planned by AW or luck.You decide ?

    Sanachez will always give 100% and the goals will come but I fear that Ozil will leave if we don’t really improve further than from last season.

    Monreal was most probably the most improved player last season, but is he that good for a side wishing to win the title, and Gibbs we all know is injury prone.

    The OX needs more game time,not 10 minutes at the end,which I believe has already happened twice and if Ramsey isn’t played in his rightful position, we will lose out.

    Is it rotation with AW or doesn’t AW know his best team ?.

    We had a real chance to put down a marker this season but generally we are not clicking and as usual predictable, another couple of loses and the season is over bar scraping for forth, and the CL already looks difficult after only one game..

    I can’t see us winning tomorrow unless there is a huge improvement all round.How a team can slump so badly after a good pre season is really baffling.

  23. stevepalmer1 says:

    Eddie, its not for me to rubbish your views, as you are entitled to say your piece. I agree that our signings have not been what we wanted and God forbid i lay blame on any one person. I am just like you, i want the best team, i want a competitive team, that has a chance of winning honours.

    Arsenal in my mind. are not in a position to challenge. Whatever the reasons we do not get the players most feel will strengthen us, whether the reason is money or other reasons, we do not know, but even so on our day we are as good as any. In fact in my mind better than many.

    Squads have many games during a season, all teams have injuries and we have our fair share, Where i feel we fall down is we do not in my mind build up on good results.

    Many people who play sports get a momentum at some point, tennis players are some who have a tough time, they are out on the court for sometimes many hours, and if they win that game have another pretty quickly, Many like it like that as who knows how long form stays with you. Confidence is built up with wins and the more wins makes you more competitive.

    In football it is possible to leave out players in the next game, and fit others in, in tennis if you do not turn up you are out no substitutes. Footballers love playing when winning they do not like to sit a match in the stands. Many of our clan on AA feel players need a rest after 5 games in 3 months as they feel they are tiring, i do not share that idea, but our manager does.

    It is not the first time he has spoilt the momentum, and he will do it again very soon. I believe players need to be pushed they need competition and they need to be playing often, Personally i feel seven days is to long for a footballer to wait to be playing. A 90 minute game is a drop in the ocean in a week and no amount of discussion will change my view on that, tell a man he is tired and he goes to sleep tell him he’s needed and he comes alive, tell him he is being rested is like telling him he is not needed.

    Arsenal have the squad to b eat Chelsea of that i have absolute faith in, whether their minds are clear enough is another matter, their minds have had a knock and it may make them think of defeats in the past never a good time to take momentum away from players but its been done and we may just suffer from it , I dont believe the rested players will benefit from a rest, but i could opf course be wrong.

  24. GoonerB says:

    Great Rant Eddie. I agree that our world class players looking to leave if we don’t show signs of going that last extra bit to get a team that can compete on all fronts is a very real one. Then the building process gets set back 3 years.

    Not having a chance tomorrow Eddie? Sorry I can’t go with that one. I am an eternal pessimistic optimist you know. 🙂

  25. mickydidit89 says:

    Crystals 😀

    Talk about stating the obvious 😀

  26. GoonerB says:

    Sports science Steve.Everything is fine tuned to get the team operating at maximum capacity, or perhaps more correctly not dropping 5-10% in performance ability. The game is faster and more demanding on the body. It is not that the players cannot play many games in a row it is that the sports data will show that their performance levels drop after too many games in a row and they are more susceptible to injuries. This happens without the player being aware and through no deliberate drop in performance from them.

  27. kelsey says:

    Is that a compliment,micky 😉

  28. Eddie says:

    GB 🙂 do you want to bet? £5 we lose

    steve – I was only joking you know 🙂 I agree with your views most the time but more so after we underperform

  29. mickydidit89 says:

    No crystals
    I just agree with all you say 😀

  30. stevepalmer1 says:

    Eddie, xxx 🙂

  31. Rasp says:

    That’s a pretty tepid rant Steve 😆
    Eddie has shown the way 🙂

    I’m not one of those who thinks the moral high ground is achieved by saying “it’s only one game etc etc”. It was one game that came about as a consequence of a string of poor decisions … and some on here think that no-one should be held accountable … not me.

  32. stevepalmer1 says:

    GB sports science is losing us games then, Had we played the team that beat Stoke i have no doubts we would have scored bundles,

    Strikers and midfield would now have a buzz. I dont think many are buzzing right now

  33. stevepalmer1 says:

    A bloke i work with is a member of a running club, he runs long distance races up to forty odd miles, he trains twice a week running up to 8 miles, he has a race once a month and has taken up the offer from his club to run the next route to make sure it is suitable for the race, He does this on the weekend. He carries water bottles around his waist and his times are very good.

    This guy works two days a week and is like a whippet. I said to him about injuries seeing how he runs further than i do in a year, he said i have just brought a pair of running shoes the most expensive shoe’s i have ever brought at £80 he said they are like slippers and makes his runs so comfortable.

    I asked him how long he has done these runs and he said 8 years, before that a cyclist long distance, he said he only really feels the pressure when he has a cold but once he gets going he may have to walk some days. This man is 65 years old he told me he has not missed a race yet and he gets an award for every race he runs.

    The man just loves running i call him Forrest Gump, he tells me when he doesn’t enjoy it he will pack up.

    Now this guy may or may not be telling me fibs but he has shown me all the routes on his phone he has running meters and he has to carry the ordnance survey maps, not so much now as he knows the route so that has helped him. He suffers from no sports science related injuries as far as i know but i have no doubts he will suffer in his old age.

  34. Red Arnie says:

    its getting up there, slowly but surely. 35% now. 🙂

  35. Red Arnie says:

    Kelsey. 🙂

  36. goonerjake says:

    Comments that the game has moved on and Wenger hasn’t moved with the times are only partly correct. I see it like this the game got better during the late 90s and into the 2000’s. But over the past say 5/6 years the game has regressed with more and more teams and managers concentrating on not loosing with basically boring negative football. Wenger seemingly to me refuses to compromise his core values of trying to play the game that he believes in and how it should be played. He does make mistakes, but I like his ethos. This is one of the reasons I stopped attending. I found that I was no longer enjoying watching teams STOPPING us play. I found it boring. I live in hope that the day will come back when you see both teams going for it and maybe even a 4 4 2. I know wenger has gone to one up top as well but it’s still attacking football but I love 4 4 2.

  37. GunnerN5 says:

    Hi Kelsey,

    It’s good to see a long overdue rant from you, however our views are far apart.

    Here is my Friday RANT!!!

    As a supporter I don’t feel any compulsion to criticize decisions that are made by the management that don’t turn out to be successful. I have no idea why they made the decisions because I don’t know any of the factors involved in the decision making – so what would give me the right to be critical.

    The easiest thing in the world is to be wise after the game when all the factors are known but making those decisions beforehand is a whole different ball game.

    I’m very disappointed and upset over a poor result but without the reasons for the decisions I’m not in a position to be critical.

    I spent over 30 years of my life in executive management and I was often the focus of undue criticism by uninformed individuals, so I know how it feels to be the bulls eye when things go wrong. Fortunately the BOD that judged my performance didn’t focus on day to day results, they had a far wider viewpoint.

    NG as a footnote I have a 2 sq’ piece of our WW11 black out curtains, it’s 1/4″ thick dark blue velvet.

  38. stevepalmer1 says:

    Nice one GN5, I can appreciate your comments, I know you now live abroad, but your support seems never to have waved. I see things with the Arsenal that cannot be explained, perhaps i should rephrase that, and say they could be explained if the manager had a mind.

    Arsenal football club is a job for him, and a dam fine job he has done since he came. Many supporters are unhappy with some decisions the club make, Transfers and player selection can easily be explained. But although most of us are not experts , we would like to know why the club announce money in the pot but we do not bolster the squad up.

    Now this is not a one off situation, this happens every season and usually we feel a couple of players short. Now of course we don’t expect the secrets of the club be told , you know the score you had felt pressure but had your hands tied and not able to explain, but the answers Mr Wenger gives are lame excuses and i feel that when one hand tells you we have money and the other tells you there is no talent around and clubs around you recruit every window does make the supporter a little touchy. Surely its not too much to ask to get an explanation that has a bit of sense to it.

  39. GunnerN5 says:

    Steve, I will go back to my years in management to answer your question.

    Whenever I had an opening for a position that reported directly to me I would always conduct the final interview and make the “hire or not hire” decision. Many times my HR manager would be shocked that I rejected people who he felt had the right credentials for the job but he recognized that a person had to be the right “fit” and only I could make that determination.

    You see Steve I had to be confident that the people would be the perfect fit and not just another misfit.

    Buying the wrong player just because AW had the budget and for the sake of filling an open position would just be plain WRONG!

  40. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Precisely GN5. I have never been successful in a job interview. Though I am self employed even that was touch and go. I only got it because the other bloke didn’t turn up

    Nice stuff Steve

    Arsene dont believe in ranting. He places trust in his players, thus creating a delightfully tranquil serenity only observed by those whose wives have left them.

    People want Arsene to have pokes at the players. You know, let them have the hair dryer treatment if they play shit etc. What people forget was that it is was the abandonment of such tactics that inspired his former players to win two doubles and go a whole season unbeaten.

    Besides, a friendly poke these days leads to suspicion you once presented a 1970s TV show and mention of hair dryers creates a spiral of depression leading Steve Bould to relive the nightmare of once living in Stoke

  41. RA says:

    Stevie, baby, 🙂

    A good comment on the previous Post, this morning, and the rant/disappointment in your excellent Post has my coffee curdling – and with no milk either! 😀

    As for personal ranting – I think it is an absolute disgrace that Kelsey/Crystal Bollox has returned with an absolute blockbuster and worked his way dextrously around the Arsenal environment with clearly sensible and entirely understandable and reasoned assessments that even I understand – where is the cobblers, the loopy logic, the rant? 🙂
    Far too good for a Friday Rant — with the dreadful exception that he did not assess the invaluable worth of the inestimable tea-lady without whom no footie club, or work environment, can operate – well maybe in my case it would need to be a coffee-lady. 🙂

    I have no idea why it should somehow be wrong to find fault with a performance, or at least be necessary to hold one’s tongue when a game is not up to the standard reasonably expected in any entertainment based activity.
    For myself I am a supporter not a fanatic (despite the diminutive word to describe supporters) – as Kelsey would have it – I speak how I see it – and why not?

    Is it wrong to go to see a much awaited film with a favourite actor, and spend two hours viewing and come out afterwards and say ‘that was not too good – the story did not make sense – and the acting was wooden’? I would still go and see my favourite actor in his/her next film.

    The same is true of footie. Everyone who is disappointed with their club’s performance feels the urge to rationalise the team’s general performance and also that of the players to try and make sense of it.

    In fact every manager, including Arsene, does it to some extent regarding their team – you know the stuff; the players were not mentally prepared – the players were a beet leggy – the players did not carry out the tactics agreed before the game – one or two players need to have a look at themselves – blah, blah.
    Some managers even criticise their own fans – the stadium was too quiet – the fans need to get behind the team – etc.

    Every supporter, who is being honest, feels the need to question the performance of the manager and/or the the team, as well as individual players. The tactics were wrong – apparently – the players were not switched on – some players were having an off day – the manager did not buy a quality player in the TW – the manager never makes a substitution until the 65th minute – and never changes his strategy or is arrogant, and so on.

    Most of the criticism is manifold, contradictory and total bollix, but it is a form of safety valve, and beats kicking the cat or moaning at other fans – altho some might do all three. 🙂

    Personally, I rarely feel so angry about any performance or result that I get spitting angry.
    It is a game – it is football – and I am old enough not to be surprised when things do not go the way I want – it has all happened before – and it will happen again – I will get over my disappointment, forget a poor performance and still look forward with excitement to winning the next game — and will always be a supporter.

    As a Gooner I want to enjoy a wonderful sport, supporting a brilliant club, luxuriate in a manager of rare genius, and a team with many superb players – despite occasional disappointments, life is too short to spend it being miserable! 😀

    Now that is a rant! 😀

  42. kelsey says:

    RA

    as you know I say it as I see it. It’s nothing to do with the most expensive ticket prices,supporting, as that goes without saying, the view from the gods, Kroenke (well maybe it is).
    I never express myself properly with the written word but when I say the game has passed AW by, of course we will get joyous results,but consistently no, as more and more teams know how to stifle us than they did before and that’s where I critisize AW.He doesn’t really have a plan B or C.

    The infuriating thing is that we are so close to being real title contenders but despite only being 5 games in, I honestly believe he has misjudged the squad he has and hasn’t strengthened in key positions.
    Christ the world and his/her mother say it almost daily on all media football programmes.It doesn’t wash with me that no one that suited was available. All in all after the euphoria to end last season we look extremely ordinary so far this season.

    Sorry to steal your thunder,Steve 😉

  43. Big Raddy says:

    Steve. Really enjoyed your post. I often imagine how it is at the club leading up to the weekend game.

    Just 6 games ago we won the FA Cup. We finished 3rd despite being the 4th biggest club yet some are still saying the manager stuck in his ways and unable to move with the times!!!

    I think the manager has done and continues to do an brilliant job. That does not mean he is infallible – he made a selection mistake on Weds and we paid for it.

    My rant would be about the mood swings from smiles to gloom. We purred after Stoke then 4 days later …. etc etc

    I am closing the curtains on this one.

    Eddie. Would you really bet on an Arsenal loss? You may well be right that AFC will lose tomorrow but if you made the bet and won all you would have is tainted Chav money

  44. Anyone know the rules of rugby – I know nothing 😀

  45. Kelsey – lovely to see you blogging

  46. mickydidit89 says:

    Peaches

    Put it this way, pretending to be hurt does not go down well at all 🙂

    Surfing cancelled. Feeling gloomy. Although really looking forward to the rugger 🙂

  47. RA says:

    Peaches,

    Anyone who says he/she knows all the rules of Rugby Union is telling porkies -and that includes the referees. 🙂

    If, however, I can be of help, feel free to ask – I know everything! 😀

  48. mickydidit89 says:

    RA
    I don’t know what the little box in front of the goal keeper in Association Football is for, but don’t tell anyone

  49. kelsey says:

    Thanks peaches 🙂

    Raddy, you have your exra rose tinted glasses on. I will give you the Stoke performance was good but Buckland was fantastic and as a team that was one of the worst Stoke teams I have seen for years.

  50. Red Arnie says:

    Curious fact, Peaches, but I was planning to write a post about rugby on AA. 🙂

  51. RA says:

    Hi Kelsey,

    Great to see you back. 🙂

    Many fans would find it difficult to disagree with your 4:53.

    Some of what Arsene says is, of course, to try and avoid hurting players feelings, and make them lose confidence.

    In the case of Theo and especially Giro, I think he played down the desire to sign a top CF as nothing was to be gained by saying he tried really hard to get someone, and a there was a lot to lose.

    I read today that Benzema had made it clear that if Arsenal could agree a deal with Real, he would be happy to join Arsenal, and all the positive social network pics etc seem to show that.

    It was alleged that it was only the personal involvement of Real boss Perez that convinced Benzema to stay.

    Wenger was upset, naturally, because he only made his move when Benzema gave him a ‘come and get me’ signal, then backed off and issued those crude ‘I never wanted to leave Real’ comments.

    So, the result was that Wenger took a lot of stick trying to pretend there was no one available who was as good as his two current CFs- which no one believed anyway – including Giro by the look of him.

    Benzema is a pillock.

  52. RA says:

    That is not ‘curious’ Arnie, and neither is it ‘fact’ – it’s just weird! 🙂

  53. RA says:

    Micky,

    The little box is to protect your little gems — the bigger box is for those with bigger gems.

  54. LB says:

    I’m glad someone else saw the same Stoke game as me, I was beginning to think I had imagined the absolutely superb interplay. Don’t see why we won’t get more of the same on Saturday.

  55. Red Arnie says:

    Redders. You will find out soon enough. Just in case my post is not censored by teh powers that be! 🙂

  56. I also thought the Stoke game was excellent. Winning 2-0 wasn’t enough for some supporters but if they stopped to think about all the chances that were created and if even another one or two had ended up goals they’d be much happier.

    We can’t score if we’re not trying to score. We have a solid back five in Cech, Bellerin, Gabriel, Koscielny and Monreal so we can have our gung-ho boots on.

    If Coquelin and the defenders do their job and any of the forwards find the back of the net it’ll be an enjoyable game to watch.

  57. RA says:

    You are a star, Arnie – bring it on! 🙂

    I want to know all about the rugby.

    If I had to choose where to play, I hear a fly-half might suit me. He whips it out doesn’t he?
    Although a scrum-half does have its attractions – they put it in, don’t they?

    Or maybe a rugby hooker — mm not sure about that!

    Choices, choices, Arnie, but you would be the man to know. 😀

  58. Sad to see that Szczesny is out for three months with ligament damage, that sort of thing can be career threatening. Still it’s only his finger so it shouldn’t cause too much trouble, he seldom got his hands any where near the ball when he played for us. 😀

  59. Arnie – if you fancy writing something about rugby I can add it as an extra page accessed from the top of the blog.

  60. A new rule is being introduced for the Rugby World Cup, anyone feigning injury will be shown a yellow card and that means ten minutes in the sin bin. Might be an idea for football to consider.

  61. Rasp says:

    We played a balanced team – our best available against Stoke. We played a 50% second string side in the opening game of the CL ….. That’s the difference

  62. RA says:

    Norfolk,

    I think that Rugby has pinched the rule from football! 🙂

    Yellow cards for diving will be introduced in rugby for the first time at this World Cup 2015 in a bid to crackdown on the ‘football culture’ creeping into the game.

    John Jeffrey, the chairman of the World Rugby match officials selection committee, warned that players will be sin-binned for simulation or feigning injury. ‘Diving would be ungentlemanly conduct,’ said former Scotland flanker Jeffrey. ‘It would be a straight yellow card.’

    Jeffrey said any player appealing to match officials to award penalties could also face sanctions, while citing commissioners could cite a player for such offences in what would amount to a post-match yellow card. Repeat offenders also risk a judicial hearing that may result in a suspension.

  63. Redders and you were saying you knew nothing about Rugby? 😀

  64. RA says:

    I was lying, as usual, Norfolk! 🙂

    Actually I am a big fan of the England Rugby team.

  65. GoonerB says:

    Right off to be a rugby fan till tomorrow morning. Peaches, you don’t need to know the rules of Rugby. Just sit down with a large glass of Rioja look at the biceps, look at the thighs, sigh contentedly and have your own personal diet coke break for 80 minutes 🙂

  66. Rasp says:

    Come on England 🙂 this is quite a new team in terms of caps.

  67. chas says:

    Hey, it sounds like a few are watching the rugby.
    Bring it on.

  68. Rasp says:

    Are you not watching the rugby chas? I know at least one of your brothers who will be glued to the screen no doubt 🙂

  69. chas says:

    Thanks for the post, Steve.
    I’ve absolutely no idea what it’s about, but I love it nonetheless. 🙂

  70. chas says:

    Rasp,

    Of course I am.
    I don’t give a shit if we win or lose as long as I can travel, take some selfies and get pissed. 😆

  71. Rasp says:

    Don’t tell Eddie that 😆

  72. Rasp says:

    I love the rugby, cricket, queuing – all the traditional British sports

  73. chas says:

    …. moaning about The Arsenal. 🙂

  74. Rasp says:

    No one sings the national anthem with as much gusto as rugby players 🙂

  75. chas says:

    I’d prefer our National Anthem to be Swing Low, even republicans could sing it.

  76. Eddie says:

    I am going to live to regret being angry this morning 🙂

  77. Rasp says:

    We won the World Cup in red 🙂 Fiji making a lot of errors

  78. chas says:

    Haha, all in jest, Eddie.
    As I’ve met most of the people I converse with on here, I feel I can take some liberties with what I say.
    Just like I can with my mates at home.

  79. Big Raddy says:

    You’ve got mates?

  80. chas says:

    No, you’ve got me there, BR.
    I live in an imaginary cyber world like Terry.

  81. Rasp says:

    Hmmm, video replays in rugby ensure decisions are correct. If we had them in football we’d have taken 3 points against pool 😕

  82. chas says:

    I’m not sure Rambo’s offside would even have been referred to the video linesman.
    The ref’s whistle would have put the goalkeeper off.

  83. stevepalmer1 says:

    Bugger me i leave a comment i dont think will get answered and bugger me all the big boys come and blog, I looked at the weather and thought i would have a try for the Barbel down the river, only fished it once this year and the Babel season ends this month. don’t ask bugger all.

    I must say having all the big boys on the blog at the same time had nothing to do with my lame Rant.

    Thank you Gn5 well answered mate.

  84. Big Raddy says:

    Steve. Barbels. Can you eat them?

  85. chas says:

    Ooo, barbel are meant to be great fun if you manage to hook one. 🙂

  86. Big Raddy says:

    Video replays have to come. It is ridiculous that soccer is the only major sport that doesn’t use them

  87. Big Raddy says:

    I thought they came in pairs

  88. chas says:

    When they draw the offside line on the TV they always do it via the feet of the defender and attacker, though the offside rule talks about any part of the body with which you can score a goal.
    Just one minor complication. 🙂

  89. chas says:

    I often disagree with Sky’s decision on an offside, don’t you? 🙂

  90. chas says:

    Haha, 40 minute half took 51 minutes with all the TMO referrals.

  91. Big Raddy says:

    It can be the same as cricket with only two referrals possible per side

  92. Rasp says:

    The fact remains that there is a far greater chance of the right decisions being made with video replays. The problem is to find a structure so that the system can’t be manipulated to allow unfair advantage. There would be enough time after every goal for a 5th official to view a replay whilst the teams are celebrating. It’s simple, if the video is inconclusive then the refs decision stands.

  93. stevepalmer1 says:

    You can eat most things if your hungry enough, sacrilege to an angler though. Ha ha. Not a big fan of Rugby

  94. chas says:

    Cricket is so different with the ball going dead after every single delivery.

  95. Rasp says:

    Yes that’s true, I certainly wouldn’t want to see the game being stopped every few minutes for a replay, just the contentious decisions. It should be down to the 5th official to tell the ref when he thinks he should call for a replay IMO.

  96. Big Raddy says:

    That was entertaining.

    I agree about the 5th referee.

  97. chas says:

    I don’t 🙂

  98. chas says:

    G’night

  99. GoonerB says:

    Good result for the England Rugby boys tonight. I have a feeling it should have and could have been more but they got that extra try that gets the extra point. Wales and Australia may possibly do better against them but looking at Fiji (with a Kiwi coach ) I am not so sure that they will find it that easy. I will happily take tonight’s result and score-line.

    Sorry am I on the wrong blog 🙂

  100. Red Arnie says:

    Peaches, Redders. 🙂 Probably one for Monday 28 is the best bet. 🙂

    Let us not up the England team too much. Long way to go yet. I am supporting Sconny Botland of course. 🙂

  101. Gööner In Exile says:

    Sorry to pick up the video ref debate, does no one really see the difference in the sports that have it and football?

    Rugby has always had the advantage rule, that sets a precedent for pulling the game back.

    The try that was disallowed tonight only got disallowed because the crowd responded to the video, the Fijian team were about to go for the conversion then the ref caught a glimpse of the action on screen and asked for the referral.

    The decision that has made perfect sense is goal line technology, unfortunately that is the only point of a game where the ball can be ruled dead one way or the other without need to stop the game, we could do the same for the entire playing surface (touch lines/goal lines) it’s amatter of fact.

    So this is my often used situation to show why video refs could never work in football.

    Centre forward drives into box, goes down under a challenge, ball goes to keeper, keeper rolls it out to full back, and spring a counter attack, they make there way up the pitch and shoot at goal, it hits a defender, a player appeals for handball, the ball rolls to the other keeper, who sets his team forward, as a result of the attack a ball over the top releases a man through on goal, defenders have arms in the air, nothing given, attacker shoots keeper saves goes out for corner.

    No goLs have been scored, two penalty appeals not given, the ball hasn’t gone dead, if a coach can challenge the decision it could easily be used to halt the counter attack, if it’s left to the officials and they have to wait for a dead ball then we could be waiting three, five or ten minutes, if when the ball goes dead and he wants to review the decision does the clock get reset? It should do otherwise the team who now face the penalty have five minutes less to recover the deficit.

    Not all contentious decisions in football end with a deadball, it’s for that reason that football cannot pursue the video ref route without a great deal of thought, for me it would change the game far too much.

    We shouldn’t forget that the goal line technology adapted is instant, that’s what the rule makers and refs wanted….it works 100% but is not “video technology” it’s just technology that allows an instant decisions now amatter of fact. Every other football law and sub rules contain the hallowed words “if in the referees opinion…..”.

    The only other matter of fact decision that should be aided by technology is offside, I cannot understand why no one yet has managed to put a tracker in every players shirt, and have a screen which shows who is offside and who onside when a ball is player forward by a teammate. if we went down purely the video route if worry that linesman would stop flagging and wait for the outcome and then refer it to the video ref if it’s a goal. Just like run outs in cricket.

    Watching the game tonight the video ref was used to rule on matter of fact (try/no try) and to assist in getting disciplinary decisions correct (ie was it a yellow card) when the penalty had already been called.

  102. kelsey says:

    Arsenal have almost £200m in the bank after making an increased profit of £25m last year, the Premier League club’s latest accounts have revealed.

    The figures, covering the year ending 31 May 2015, show the Gunners spent a record £114m on new players.

    But they have been criticised by some fans for only making one signing – keeper Petr Cech – over the summer.

    “We’re focused on delivering more success,” said Arsenal chief executive Ivan Gazidis.

    The cash reserves of £193.1m are intended to cover costs for a full season and are not solely designated for player transfers.

    However, the Arsenal Independent Supporters’ Association insists the strong financial figures must be matched by positive results on the pitch.

    Arsene Wenger’s team lost 2-1 at Dinamo Zagreb in their Champions League opener on Wednesday.

    “The financial figures will only add fuel to the fire for those calling for further squad investment,” said AISA chair Lois Langton.

    Profit before tax was £24.7m, up from £4.7m in 2014, while the north London club say they have no short-term debt.

    Total turnover was £344.5m – an increase of £42.6m from the previous year, boosted by a new kit partnership with Puma.

    “We continue to look to develop every aspect of our operations while remaining true to our principles around being self-funding, investing in youth, our style of play and our commitment to our fans and to our place in the community,” added Gazidis.

  103. Eddie says:

    Thanks Kelsey! This confirms what I already thought – they were genuinely trying to buy a striker, but failed for one reason or another. This happens, hard to blame anyone for that

  104. kelsey says:

    Arsenal have almost £200m in the bank after making an increased profit of £25m last year, the Premier League club’s latest accounts have revealed.

    |That is an awful lot of money making .5|% gross interest.Surely 2 really good players could have been bought for say 70 million.

    I notice AW has done an about turn about todays game that there are no excuses when usually he would say, only 3 days ago we played away in Europe and the players are tired.
    I have never gone along with that.A super fit player can play twice a week and in fact would want to if fully commited.However sometimes players have been passed fir or said they are fit when actually carrying an injury.

    Chelsea aren’t in form but nevertheless it will still take a massive effort to get anything today, recent history is against us, but we aren’t free scoring as we were last season.

  105. kelsey says:

    I know some of you thinik it’s tosh and I mentioned it yesterday,but maybe there is a percentage of good players who discuss with their agents,do they really want to play for a club who really don’t have the utmost ambition to win a title,but are just content to make the top 4.

    We can’t keep going back to our heritage, we have to move with the times. No one is saying we should put the club at risk financially but is it AW or kroenke who is holding back. Loads of players were available this summer who could have replaced our ageing ones.

    Anyway enjoy the game today wherever you are.

  106. chas says:

    Kingdongbia for Flamini would have been a good swap.

  107. chas says:

    Kiingdongbia patrolling the area just in front of the back 4……..

  108. Gööner In Exile says:

    Won’t comment on the money in the bank until we’ve seen the rest of the figures rather than just the information the press have decided to report.

    My view is that current assets (the cash less creditors) won’t have changed much.

  109. kelsey says:

    Why should the press want to mislead us. Of course we have got loads more money with the TV rights alone.Even if it was only 100 or 120 million what’s the point of keeping it in the bank.

  110. mickydidit89 says:

    Utter disgrace

  111. Rasp says:

    The way video reviews are used would have to be carefully thought out, we can all come up with complex scenarios that would cause problems. There are too many stoppages in rugby IMO. All it would require is a 5th official watching a screen who could communicate with the ref and alert him if he had missed something. Replays should only be used when the ball is dead = after a goal is scored then none of the problems listed would apply.

  112. mickydidit89 says:

    Crystals

    We could afford £200k a week for that Henry IN 2006 before all the new deals, we can easily afford a world class footballer now. It’s a no brainer. Cannot afford so and so is pathetic.

    Right, back to cats

  113. Great to see you back on form Kelsey… lovely stuff.

    Today: Win- 25% Draw- 40% Loss- 35%

    Me: 27.025% confident

  114. Gööner In Exile says:

    Rasp, go back to my scenario, how would a video review when ball is dead be of any help? There are still two decisions untested, the 5th ref in the stands becomes an anonymous figure, if we are doing that is there any point of a ref on the pitch?

    The thing is I don’t doubt that technology could be used, I just don’t think anyone has come up with anything close to workable, the main issue being that the ball does not go dead as a matter of course in football.

    Kelsey just as likely as a conversation about ambition is a conversation about money, and also first team opportunities, not all footballers are mercenaries. This is a major championship year, why doesn’t Pogba go to Man City? Because he gets 100% game time at Juventus and wants his France shirt, he could have come and sat on the bench behind Yaya but wasn’t prepared to.

  115. mickydidit89 says:

    Today, we could put Chelsea into the relegation zone. Just thinking aloud 🙂

  116. Rasp says:

    Morning GIE, no one is suggesting that video replays would be perfect in every scenario. – but more correct decisions would be made. There can never be a time when everything is perfect but since everyone gets to see the bloopers on TV after the game why not try to deal with at least some of them during the game.

    Do you know if the referees are in favour? It would be interested to see how they feel. I definitely don’t want to see the flow of the game disrupted, just some help for the refs.

  117. mickydidit89 says:

    Exile
    Let’s face it, a quality new striker wouldn’t have been short of opportunities at Arsenal 🙂

  118. Big Raddy says:

    Morning All

    Kelsey. Great to se you blogging.

    There are only 22 players in the PL who are playing for Champions and the same n all the other leagues. We are always in the CL, win Cups and the players work in one of the world’s best stadiums in London, which is also an attraction.

  119. Wow, old school morning blogging!!!

    Morning everyone 🙂

    I can’t join in, I’m under the duvet and my phone battery is about to die 😉

  120. Big Raddy says:

    Howard Web is in favour.

  121. The Coq against Costa today

  122. mickydidit89 says:

    Peaches
    Move about fast under the duvet, create sparks, and bingo. Electricity 🙂

  123. stevepalmer1 says:

    Morning all,
    Well i must say its nice to see Kelsey blogging so early, Its match day and i can only assume Kel’s is feeling better and bloody good show mate a proper welcome back mate.

    Your figures for our bank account is interesting, To be assessed as one of the top ten wealthiest clubs in the world, has to have some merit to how much profit coming in and what is in the bank.

    We are not entering the markets, that is clear, Kelsey has told us that Players were available, i believe Kel’s says that, but he, i am sure feels that top quality strikers may not be so prolific.

    GN5 in his answer to my comment, was detailed, he went back to his working life and his position in his company as hirer and firer. I found that part of his answer understandable, Where he confused me was to say that hirering the wrong person when all around believe him to be right, would be wrong. and i understood that to a degree, where the cloudiness came in was when i thought of Bendtner Sanogo Chamakh. I really can see a wronger there , so it can not be an exact science. can it.

  124. I wouldn’t be surprised that bloggers on AA have increased the stats and views of Cat videos and photos…

  125. Big Raddy says:

    I have to go out soon.

    Rasp/Peaches can you publish the post? If there is no response before I leave (10 mins) I will publish early

  126. That’s fine Raddy, I can do it

  127. Rasp says:

    If I can join the finances debate. We have a very successful business. The amount of money we currently have in the bank is really irrelevant, the business can generate money and service debt if need be.

    If we need a player to improve the team we should attempt to fill that gap whether we have 200m or 20m if it is deemed that buying the player increases our chances of success and therefore increased income. I’m not advocating reckless spending, just that focusing on the 200m is a bit daft, we don’t have to spend it all on players any more than we should resist buying a key player if it means creating a debt we can service.

  128. stevepalmer1 says:

    Not being much of a rugger fan, i have to say the opening matches has passed me by, But just looking at the highlights against Fiji, i saw an England guy jumping for a highball, and a 20 stone Fijian knocked him into next week. The England player picked himself up and carried on.

    I had myself imagining similar happenings in a football match, and i have to say the same kind of challenge would have resulted in concussion ligament damage you name it it would have been disastrous. When we talk about sports science and footballers being tired, i have to question the two sports, each sportsman are expected to see out the whole game, Rugby of course is a contact sport where as football is more a non contact sport.

    I tend to wonder how a footballer can roll about the floor even when a replay shows he was not contacted. Sports science must be a made up job.

  129. Big Raddy says:

    Oops forgot to publish

    Can you ?

  130. Yes don’t worry, I’ll publish in a few minutes. Have a nice day Raddy

  131. stevepalmer1 says:

    Rasp, morning mate, What you say is right , but at the end of the day the holder of the purse strings is the one person that nods or shakes his head.

    Wenger for me is a very good Manager, i honestly feel that he wants to be a successful leader, he i believe would know where we need bolstering better than anyone else. But a shake of the head of the purse string holder is enough for him to know not this time Arsene.

    Wenger has degree’s in many subjects the man is highly intelligent, he knows what we need make no mistakes about that, but he also understands finance, He is not just a football manager, he is also a finance manager, but he also had a boss. GN5 had the same boss, he would make a decision but had his boss nodded GN5 would have succumbed.

  132. Rasp says:

    Morning Steve, I’m afraid I don’t sign up to the Wenger is omnipotent argument. He is obviously highly intelligent in all matters as you say – but I feel that at times he is too close to things and needs to take a step back – or even take some advice from others. He has pretty much said that all decisions are down to him and that is not a healthy situation unless he is held accountable when he gets things wrong.

    I would prefer it if he just concentrated on managing the football. It should not be the manager’s job to worry about the finances, that is why we have a Board and a Chief Execvutive

  133. stevepalmer1 says:

    Rasp, of course what you say sounds like how things should be, and Christ i agree with that concept. But to be honest mate, its to late for that to happen.

    Kroenke took over, the way i saw it at the time Wenger was involved in everything Arsenal, he was a proven Manager and we had a non footballing Owner, Wenger has grown since his sole Manager job, he is up there with the elite in the boardroom decisions. His imput is part and parcel with how the business runs.

    He will in the end retire, but that will not be the end for him, he will still have a big say. The new manager will probably be hand picked by him and Arsenal will carry on much the same.

    Of course i am not in the know, so all this could be Bollix but i see no change for some time no matter how much we have in the bank.

  134. ‘Morning all.

    I see Ozil, or his agent, is angling for a pay rise. He’s, they, are expecting a massive offer from Fernebache.

  135. We have a New Post everyone …………………….

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