Arsenal: expectation and enjoyment

Someone close to me has just been diagnosed with severe depression.

We talk at length on a regular basis and it’s always been clear to me that he sets himself up to fail. For him, being anything other than the best at anything he does, renders it all completely pointless, resulting in the inevitable doom and gloom.

Ironically he is the same bloke that I do many things with, all of which are very simple, and which have yielded some of our happiest memories. I am pleased he is now getting professional help as I can only offer my rather simplistic take on life.

Look for what makes you happy, and do it.

I share the view of Peaches regarding Arsenal’s past week. The loss to Watford at home hurt more than the loss to Chelsea away. Now the league title is out of reach, I feel a burden has been removed. Of course I’d like us to win the thing, but we now have fourteen league games remaining as well as some FAC and CL matches, so it’s time to look at where the fun is to be had, because if every game is going to make you miserable, then don’t watch and certainly don’t go.

I will be watching, I hope to go, and I will enjoy, and as anyone who knows me will understand I will only be looking for goals and excitement. Simple fellow, simple needs.

MickyDidIt89

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120 Responses to Arsenal: expectation and enjoyment

  1. VP of Oz says:

    ditto

  2. Morning micky, thank you for the post.

    I’m sorry to hear about your friend, hopefully with the right help he’ll get back on an even keel.

    Being a football supporter is not for the feint hearted – not if you’re going to really care about what happens. It hurts when it’s bad but it’s amazing when it’s good and over a season there are far more good times than bad. I always go because I wouldn’t want to miss a good time 🙂

  3. djrc says:

    Thanks for the your article Micky.
    Great to put things in perspective after a bad week for AFC.

  4. Rasp says:

    Top man Micky … well said 🙂

    I’m up for a bit of self flagellation as much as the next guy 😕 … but apart from the 24 hours after the game, we have no choice (if we’re sensible) than to do what the players must do … pick ourselves up and make the most of the remaining games this season.

  5. block 07 row 18 says:

    MickyD ,
    Many people who did go now don’t go. However its very difficult not to watch when you have Arsenal in your blood. Its very difficult not to feel pain when the answers / solutions are all very plain to see.

    Some people do not like change and fear it. Are you one of these people ?

    I will keep my season ticket if AFC decide not to change anything at the end of the season. However it will be a like going to the cinema every week and watching the same film for a year.

    Even you would get fed up with that !

  6. fred1266 says:

    Nic right up micky

  7. Eddie says:

    block 07 – absolutely! I compared it to going to a top restaurant and never getting an excellent meal. Different waiters, different ownership but bloody chef has been the same for 20 years!

  8. Eddie says:

    micky – good post, thank you.

    Just a little bit of an inside knowledge – some people suffer from depression because of an adversity in their lives; others have chemical imbalance in their brains. Another lot have it wired wrongly.

    There is no cure for mental health issues, meds only suppress the symptoms.

    Now, the worst thing you can do is to tell someone with depression that they are doomers, they should see positive side of any event, that they should pull themselves together. it doesn’t work, it is a bit like telling someone to stop diarrhea with will power.

    And finally, some of us like being negative, especially when there is a bloody good reason for that.

  9. GoonerB says:

    Thanks Micky. Reading into a lot of peoples moods over the past week it is clear that emotional responses and how to cope with and view things are very individual. It doesn’t make one wrong or one right.

    Similarly I am increasingly recognising that we don’t know each others feelings and views in their entirety on here. I hate the terms AKB’s and WOB’s or AWO’s or whatever it is termed. It is perfectly reasonable for one individual to support Arsene entirely but still feel he is maybe not the right one for us now. Also it is reasonable for another to voice their feelings more that Arsene should move on without while still loving him and what he has done for us, without being inferred to as a bad supporter or spoilt brat.

    I have gone through a range of emotions over the last 2-3 seasons but the one I now feel seems altogether more worrying than all those before like sadness, disappointment anger, elation, joy. I worryingly now feel apathetic I recognise the feeling from the early 2000’s when I went apathetic on England and in reality became a very part time supporter since with a couldn’t give an arse either way really.

    It stems I think from a feeling that we could do so much better but are repetitively doing the same things that undermine us. I doubt I will go into full blown mode with Arsenal but probably will with EPL games. ECL and FA cup will require watching while we are still in them.

    I almost feel Arsenal have become England and the FA our board. A safe bet that always falls short of its potential but never hits disaster mode. It is almost as if the exciting ups and downs of football have vanished from our club to be replaced with an above average mundane stagnation.

    Sorry if that makes me a bad supporter or spoilt brat 🙂

  10. LB says:

    Nice read Micky.

  11. GB,

    I agree with much of what you say. I have convinced myself over the last few seasons that I don’t care about the results as much as I used to, but if i’m honest I know this is just a defensive mechanism used to avoid the hurt and anger that seems to have built up recently. Results like the Watford one though brings out the raw emotion and reminds me that it really does still matter.

    I often find myself in limbo as to what I want next at Arsenal, and my attitude towards Wenger often sways with the results and the mood around the club. I think a large portion of our fans are like that and the protest last year showed that whilst some fans have moments of frustration, they are not totally convinced that they want a new manager.

  12. Nice one Micky. I hope your mate finds the peace he is looking for

    Mental illness is an awful affliction. I myself have been diagnosed with the terrible condition known as “single personality disorder” which basically means that unlike others who can imagine they play the guitar, I have to walk round all day with the terrible realisation that i’m me.

    I don’t get the disillusionment with Arsenal? Ever since my first game back in 1971 I have never lost the buzz and excitement of following the club.

    Of course i want us to win every game but defeats and disappointments are part and parcel of been a football fan.

    There is also an added bonus to the disappointments. They make the victories even sweeter.

    The Ghosts of the Thirties are Stirring

  13. Jimmy Balantyne says:

    Hope your friend gets the help required to return him to good mental health. As for Arsenal, a managerial change is required, I think that’s fairly obvious. I’d like whoever comes in to transpose Arsenal into a mean, cynical machine that wins one-nil and the rest of the world despise. It was better then, it hurt less when we lost…

  14. GoonerB says:

    Sorry Jimmy I want to have my Cake and eat it. Winning titles with style and good football is the requirement.

    I still feel we have a squad capable of this right now. Not saying it can’t be improved, but we have (and have had) the tools to win the EPL over the last 2-3 seasons.

    Sorry to hear about your single personality disorder Terry, my heart goes out to you. I am sure that with the right help you can get back to the multiple level. Call me when Sofia and Maria are back on the agenda and I can go for that brandy with one of them.

  15. mickydidit89 says:

    Thanks all.

    Block 07
    “Some people do not like change and fear it. Are you one of these people ?”
    No. Love change. I’d be switching managers every week 🙂

  16. GoonerB says:

    Reflecting on the Chelsea game in isolation I would say that they were better by a fine margin, but more because they looked slightly better organised than us, so it was fine margins.

    I don’t think the score reflected the general play once you factor in that their first goal shouldn’t have stood and their last goal was a complete gift from us. The 2nd was arguably a gift as well, though lets no detract from Hazard’s fine display here. Then factor in our missed chances and it is easy to see that the differences in this game alone were not so vast.

    This however doesn’t take away from the fact that once again we are pretty much out of the title race at a ridiculously early stage, and that once again we are probably heading for a premier league points tally that remains consistent for us and shows no overall progression of the side.

    Very hard to look at the Chelsea game in isolation without considering the bigger picture, but in isolation we didn’t look that far away that a bit of luck, and being more composed, clinical and organised wouldn’t have addressed.

  17. Eddie says:

    micky – would you? I doubt it

    I feel dreadful and treacherous being so anti-Wenger. For all that he has done for the Club he deserves utmost respect. And a little bit of love too. And I have tonnes of respect for him, and some love and admiration, and I would hate him to be pushed out. He should have retired in glory 2 years ago, after winning the 2nd FA cup.

  18. Eddie says:

    just one more thing about depression, since you started it 🙂 it was topic of the day on LBC radio this morning. A grandmother called saying that her 23 year old granddaughter suffers from depression. She went on to say that she is tired of being supportive and understanding, that the girl is 23 now and there is no change. Would she say that if god forbid the girl had cancer for many years? People still think it is in our power to overcome depression. Sadly, not always.

    And I do apologise for the doom and gloom, but I don’t see why I should suffer alone 🙂

  19. GoonerB says:

    Eddie, it looks like all the more devout of us on here have all gone into hiding rather than chat with us of the slightly more critical nature.

    There is definitely a pattern on A.A about who is on and when depending on how we are faring and what happened in the most recent game.

    Only Terry seems to put his head above the parapet, but his psyche is such that he is indestructible and unaffected by opposing opinions.

  20. Eddie says:

    GB 🙂 are you saying Terry is fooking bonkers? No, never

    British generally dislike direct confrontation and I should respect it more and shut the trap, but it is not in my nature to back off. I am not even that angry, or that negative…it is just so draining having like you said finish the season with 14 games to go. I suppose it is true that the higher you climb the harder you fall; have we not been the greatest team in the country for so long, we would not be moaning about finishing in top 4 for hopefully 14 years.

  21. mickydidit89 says:

    GB

    For me the big difference between us and Chelsea on the day was Hazard. I thought he was by far and away the most effective player on the pitch.

    So…..we remain two players short. One to equal them, the second, to better them 🙂

    Oh, and a sexy new system because it’s fashionable

  22. GoonerB says:

    Do you know what Eddie I would prefer to see some yoyo seasons and dips at the club as long as we seem to be trying to get back up to the top. At least it would provide more excitement.

    This top 4 thing has worn off on me and I don’t place great emphasis on it anymore. It seems it is more for the money men, unfortunately whose opinion seems to be the only one that matters.

    I used to fear it myself but on reflection now I think a Svengali type fear of dropping out of the top 4 has been brainwashed into us, but I see other big clubs suffer it and come back fighting stronger with a resolution to not just get back into the top 4 but to get to the top of the top 4.

    Expectations are different for different clubs and ours should be to win the EPL, and we shouldn’t be labelled spoilt just because Sunderland’s supporters are magnificent in defeat and resolutely take not winning the premier league on the chin (sorry Mackems).

    I make no apology for thinking we should win the premier league and that we should have secured one of them recently.

    Anyway you keep confronting Eddie. Most of the chaps on here probably enjoy being insulted and set upon by a bird called Eddie 🙂

    On a side note sorry to hear that one of the Rugby greats has passed before his time…RIP Joost Van Der Westhuizen.

    I personally thought he was the best scrum half of that generation and arguably one to consider in a worlds best 15.

  23. GoonerB says:

    I don’t know Micky, I reckon it could be 1 player short. If it is 2 players then I would look at the Wanyama and Kante purchases and wonder if they would have been better for us than who we have brought in, but I still feel we might be able to get that CM combination right from what we have.

    I would be very happy to see Danny to the left of Sanchez and Ozil behind but feel it is the right side that needs something.

    For a more moderate purchase maybe Mahrez could be considered. I still think he is quality despite Leicesters troubles this season, and he should have moved anyway.

    To go all out I would bust the bank for that childhood Gooner Gareth Bale. We probably need to trim the squad with 1-2 players leaving anyway so I reckon we could go for 1 big player as a one off.

    I reckon our basic system is ok, just that we need to play the right players in it.

  24. GoonerB says:

    Looking back at my comment I suppose it is a bit pot kettle black with me pointing out peoples absences on the site, bearing in mind I frequently go AWOL for Lord Lucan length periods of time.

    For the record though I will come on if we win and if we lose in good times and bad. It all depends on the time I have and whether I can be a-sed to comment, normally dependent upon if I feel I have missed the boat (topic wise) and you have all happily moved onto animals and musical instruments 🙂

    Nothing wrong with that I just don’t own a cat or dog and have zero musical acumen. Chas’ pictures and bits are funny though.

  25. GoonerB says:

    Right see you all next month 🙂

  26. mickydidit89 says:

    GB

    The arguments that being out of top four are beneficial, I think, our based on less fixtures (assuming lower than 5th) and that the club in question would do something drastic ie change personnel/spend loads.

    The really successful sides in the long term ie yer Barcas, Reals, Bayerns and Juves tend to do this even when they win the cl, let alone don’t qualify for cl football.

    My thoughts are that we are better off in the cl, but the club ought to make changes as and where improvements could be made.

    In short, irrespective of where you finish or what you win, you should be striving for better. Utd under Fergie were certainly like that.

  27. mickydidit89 says:

    Oh shit. GB gone. String Quartets it is then 🙂

  28. mickydidit89 says:

    Wow, mine was a messy comment.

    I think Arsenal as an institution/culture may be a bit too nice.

    Kinda “No, after you, Sir”

  29. GoonerB says:

    Not fully gone Micky.

    The other argument Micky is that a reasonable drop from this top 4 might give the club (board, management e.t.c) a huge kick up the jacksy.

    Maybe everyone has become too comfy at the level we have been at and are not taking the risks that could push us higher. Don’t they have a corporate term for that when a company is too top heavy with those further down their career path who just want to see things out with ease, so no risks are taken and the company starts to stagnate rather than move dynamically forwards (or at least try to)?

    I agree that ideally we should be looking to push on from where we have been and win the darned thing, and then having won the darned thing ask how we could improve further. Alas that does not seem to be this Arsenal so I suppose many question whether we need a shock drop factor to spur everything into motion.

  30. I think people know my views GB. On the day that women who wrote fifty shades of grey had her book signing, I turned up at Arsenes house and asked if he sign my copy. I now have a 3 mile restraining order and am banned from watching films were some Tosser with a dodgy childhood expresses his love by wearing leather.

    You see GB, when Arsene was a young man and holidaying in Crete with his girlfriend he had a life defining moment. Whilst sitting in some bar his eye was caught by a youthful Borousia Munchen Gladback side turning over the cynical win at all costs Bayern Munchen.

    Whilst the enthralled Arsene marvelled at Netzer roasting Beckenbeur, Nicos the waiter enthralled Arsenes girlfriend and just as Bertie Vogts blasted in a 30 yarder, Nicos began French kissing Arsenes bird.

    What could Arsene do. He had just seen a thing of beauty which was to define his footballing philosophy and destiny, yet simultaneously was undone in the game of love.. He couldn’t chalange Nicos physically? The man had a hairy back, monobrow bigger than an Amazonian Centipede, and had just auditioned for the part of the bad man in a new west end production of Jekyll & Hyde.

    This was the making of Arsene. From that day onwards he swore that one day he would develop a team that would be good, beautiful, and playing entertaining football which would defeat the evil negative sides who played boring crap and drank a potion to nick your bird.

    Arsene is an idealist, and I love him for it.

  31. mickydidit89 says:

    GB

    Someone with power needs to take the odd comment of your and call it a post

    We are certainly in a very comfy position, largely down to the lack of hostile threats.

    We have been, for a while, one or two other teams getting oiled up away from deep trouble. I don’t think we’d survive long if we dropped out of the elite, especially if it was another London club that got oiled or Yuan’d, and you know who I’m talking about !

  32. VP of Oz says:

    GB and Micky, finishing out of the top 4, I read somewhere, will cost Manure approx. $100mil in lost kit contractual clauses, TV rights, revenue etc. etc.
    Arsenal, like it or not, is a business and is part of a larger business that is owned by a company that is positioning itself to become the largest sporting club operator in the world.
    As in any large business, losing a hefty sum of revenue (ie. finishing outside the top 4) usually means one thing, cut costs and do so immediately.
    Where most fans think finishing outside the top 4 and AW leaving, will give the owners a big kick up the proverbial and make the owners spend, I believe that it would have a reverse effect and they could shut up shop for a few seasons until revenues are restored and a new manager delivers them the success that AW gave them (even though most people would argue he has not been successful these last few years, business wise, he has been).
    So a new manager could come in and be told to fund new players etc. by selling existing players like Sanchez and Ozil (who btw Arsenal have probably not re-signed because they are waiting on guaranteed CL revenue to be decided first).

    Anyway, these are my thoughts on the matter…

  33. mickydidit89 says:

    Indeed VP

    Would Stan give the go ahead to spend our way back into top four?
    Like you, I doubt it.

    Are you Perth or Melbourne, can’t remember. What’s the time now?

  34. mickydidit89 says:

    I bet Erik is a terrible patient and I bet Mrs Erik’s solution is a cold dip for him in the North Sea

    Can’t see him ever getting better

  35. mickydidit89 says:

    Chas huff
    Erik dead
    Outlook bleak

    Oh well…. 🙂

  36. GoonerB says:

    Morning all. Terry your 6.44 yesterday 🙂 🙂

    On a more serious note beautiful entertaining football was a regular identity with Arsene’s sides earlier on. Now I think we see it in sporadic games and moments in games but we also serve up a fair bit of mid table dross these days, which I tend to feel gets overlooked just because there has been a long term acceptance that we emphasise the beautiful game more than any other.

    We often revert to being a lump it forward team more than we used to, especially to certain front men. Not saying that direct football at times shouldn’t be mixed in but in some games we have played like a classic mid-lower table side from the off.

    Not trying to be negative for the sake of it, just an objective assessment, and my conclusion is that, despite what seems to be consistency, we are actually under-performing over the last 2-3 seasons and have the squad to be better. I do think it will catch up with us at some point because we have at times been a tad fortunate to date.

    VP, I get that argument and it could be spot on, but I would also give consideration to the argument that without attempting further improvement we would only get away with sneaking top 4 so long before a combination of other sides simultaneously get their act together and go past us.

    Might not happen this year but the warning signs have been there with some of the near scrapes into the top 4. If this happens then maybe your nightmare scenario plays out anyway. Maybe what many people consider to be a strength of consistency (not getting better or worse) will actually end up being our downfall because it was never going to be enough indefinitely.

  37. GoonerB says:

    Micky, if people are dying or got the hump then I will attempt to talk instruments with you. I once played a basic piece on the recorder in my 2nd year of secondary school if that helps.

    Hope I haven’t given anyone the hump. Had a bit more time in the last few days to comment but that will alas not last. It does seem to be that when I am around others scarper Micky, so I am not sure utilising anything I say for a post is a great idea.

  38. fatgingergooner says:

    Is our football that much different to when Wenger first started? Or is it that other teams knew had they to change to keep pace with us and now play football the way it should be played and therefore ours doesn’t stand out as much as it used to? You only have to look at the pitches the game is played on these days to see that an emphasis has been put on keeping the ball on the ground. No longer do we have to visit grounds where they haven’t watered the pitch and let the grass grow in order to make it difficult for us to play. All teams in the prem are capable of playing attractive passing football (and more importantly they WANT to play an attractive brand of football) and it’s even trickled down to the lower leagues where the quality has improved massively. We remember the beautiful, pacey passing of Henry, Bergkamp and co, but we forget that they didn’t always play like that and often had to grind out results when not at their most fluent. That’s all forgotten though because they won trophies and people don’t care about the poor results they had.

  39. VP of Oz says:

    Mick, its 10:48pm here now
    i’ve just got back from a late night production job.
    I do believe that AW is improving the team unless the likes of Xhaka, Lucas and most of all Mustafi are no better than what we had before, let alone the Ozil’s and Sanchez’s that he secured. I firmly believe that there is more great players to come and probably a player that will be bigger than an Ozil or Sanchez.
    However I do think that Stan is a very conservative businessman and thus if AW goes he wont spend his way out of trouble because he only has to look over at how well that worked with Liverpool and even with a Klopp it isnt working for them. Which brings me back to the Gary Neville commentary. Neville said that if Arsenal were Liverpool, everyone would be praising what a great job Klopp is doing…

  40. VP of Oz says:

    actually, that should read if Liverpool were Arsenal

  41. GoonerB says:

    VP, I like that Gary Neville sprung to Arsene’s defence. The fans he is criticising are not for me and there is something unsavoury with the way they go about things.

    I don’t think it is that easy to compare Arsenal and Liverpool. They have managers that have had different time frames to build and shape their team and are at different moments in their rebuilding phases, and subsequently have different squad depths. Liverpool’s squad for me has some holes in it, far more than we do who I feel have a more complete squad.

    We could say that if Liverpool were Arsenal then Klopp would be doing a great job, but with a 1 point difference in the premier league between them how much better a job are Arsenal doing?

    You could also say (on current reflection) that if Chelsea were Arsenal then Conte is not doing such a good job. Swings and roundabouts. Comparisons with other teams are useful but can also be used as excuses for me where we cherry pick which other big club it is convenient to compare ourselves to.

    I also would say that Arsene is improving the squad, and in that I agree, but not the performances overall. That is what is more worrying for me. Better squad with better players but no tangible improvement overall in performances and the ability to challenge for the title.

  42. Aaron says:

    VP is correct, if Arsenal drop from top four and lose revenue, it will be cut, cut and cut. stan the man has losing franchises all, which were once all winners! Would fancy a guess that he is also debt leveraged to the hilt in trying to purchase all these sports franchises and stadiums that come along with it.
    New manager will be properly fk’d and will be lied to his/her face about transfers and money available.

    Still looking forward to the games, especially FA cup and CL.

  43. Eddie says:

    The Russian dissident and chess grandmaster Garry Kasparov drew upon long familiarity with that process when he tweeted: “The point of modern propaganda isn’t only to misinform or push an agenda. It is to exhaust your critical thinking, to annihilate truth.”

    Kasparov wasn’t talking about the AFC, but he might as well

    Aaron – I think you are right, Kroenke is tight arsed and cares little about the clubs he owns. Wenger did an excellent job for him over the years and I am sure SK will beg AW to stay. If Wenger goes we will see many managers walking out OR the club dropping to mid table.

    We need to find a way to get rid off Kroenke. Why did he have to buy Arsenal??? Why didn’t we get a proper billionaire like chavs and city?

  44. mickydidit89 says:

    Why would other managers walk out Eddie?

  45. VP of Oz says:

    The Russians have fixed world chess.
    bobby fischer

    Women, by their nature, are not exceptional chess players: they are not great fighters.
    Kasparov

    I failed to make the chess team because of my height.
    Woody Allen

    I despise the media.
    Is it against the law to kill a reporter?
    They like to write only bad things about me.
    bobby fischer

    Karpov, Kasparov, Korchnoi have absolutely destroyed chess by their immoral, unethical, prearranged games. These guys are really the lowest dogs around.
    bobby fischer

  46. mickydidit89 says:

    VP

    I have promised myself to only talk football on here but “I failed to make the chess team because of my height” must get a special mention 🙂

  47. Eddie says:

    vp – really?? I had no idea, tell me more it is very interesting. The quote about media was from the NY Times

    micky – any other manager would not want to produce results on a shoe string. They undoubtedly would want to match their spending with other big clubs. The fact that Wenger delivered so much on so little is exceptional, no other manager could do that

    The problem I have with this is that I’d rather he stuck 2 fingers up to Kroenke

  48. GunnerN5 says:

    Eddie he is a principled gentleman and will make his decisions in a manner hat fits his style. My single biggest has been the amount of unwarranted abuse that he has had to withstand – it’s been completely unseemly.

    The best manager in our history should be treated with the utmost respect but unfortunately the discontents have ensured that that will not happen.

  49. GunnerN5 says:

    Should read – My single biggest disappointment —–

  50. Eddie says:

    of course you are right GN5
    And I think Wenger will regret not retiring at good times. The ‘bad’ times will linger and the 14 years without winning the league could become his legacy.

    Anyway, I am trying to be positive – not all is lost, we could still win the CL 🙂 🙂 🙂 even my cat is laughing 🙂 🙂

  51. VP of Oz says:

    bobby fischer media quote from https://www.chess.com/forum/view/general/bobby-fischer-quotes
    The same quote is also referenced on other sites.
    Its not profound

    shoestring budget or not, Arsenal are doing well however they continue to fall short at critical times and this is analysed commendably and at length on this site.

    Arsenal Fan TV need a broader representation of the Arsenal fan base. They have some loud arrogant regulars who demand perfection yet they should look at their own lot before criticising so aggressively. Winning the Title or CL is not enough in the view of these guys for AW to be given the option to continue, only the treble would be deemed a success and even then only some of them would even agree on this. Their benchmark is Fergie and Pochettino but only when he is winning.

  52. GN5, in the near future do you foresee yourself coming over to London for a visit? If you do, please let me know in advance. I can nab a couple of tickets for you and your Mrs or son etc next to me for the game of your choice.

    I mean it, don’t want payment or nothing, just the pleasure of your company at a game is reward enough.

  53. GunnerN5 says:

    The CL and FA Cup remain as our only viable trophies this season – it would be just wonderful if the team can win the CL – then Arsene could leave with his head held high.

  54. VP, you half talk a lot of sense mate, good man. Same goes for Aaron to.

  55. GunnerN5 says:

    Terry that is a fantastic and very generous offer and I wish circumstances could make it possible but unfortunately that is not the case at the moment. Hopefully next season it will be possible as I would love to meet up with you and have a good old laugh – game or no game.

    Cheers.

  56. No problem GN5. Just let me know when you can come over and I will sort it.

  57. VP of Oz says:

    A pseudonym is a name adopted by a person for a particular purpose, which differs from his or her true name.

    Cafu (Marcos Evangelista de Moraes)
    Deco (Anderson Luiz de Sousa)
    Garry Kasparov (Garik Kimovich Weinstein)
    Kaká (Ricardo Izecson dos Santos Leite)
    Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (Ferdinand Lewis Alcindor, Jr.)
    Kid McCoy (Norman Selby)
    Muhammad Ali (Cassius Marcellus Clay Jr.)
    Pelé (Edson Arantes do Nascimento)
    Rivaldo (Vitor Borba Ferreira)
    Rocky Marciano (Rocco Francis Marchegiano)
    Ronaldinho (Ronaldo de Assis Moreira))
    Terry Mancini Hair Transplant (Arsene Wenger)
    Zico (Arthur Antunes Coimbra)

  58. mickydidit89 says:

    VP
    HA HA HA 🙂

  59. VP, hahaha.

    If only I could have loved my two ex wife’s as much as I do Arsene? I would now not be an expert on ready made meals, badly ironed shirts, and heavy breathing phone calls?

    Sod it, making an anonymous heavy breathing phone call to a stranger whilst wearing a crumpled shirt stained with Tesco Chicken Tika Masala is fantastic.

  60. GunnerN5 says:

    Thanks TMHT for another smile 🙂 🙂

  61. wally says:

    I see a bit of pearl clutching going on today.

    Most if not all of the revenue the club makes, outside the gate and clothing sales, are on long-term contracts. The notion that it would suddenly dry up and disappear is a load of crap. If we were to miss it several years on the trot i’m sure there are clauses that would kick that would diminish the revenue, but that’s a longer term issue, not the immediate disaster being suggested.

    That’s why it’s important to bring a big manager, someone used to coaching the big boys, instantly commanding respect, and getting success at that level. Someone who can say my way or the highway, not the old way.

  62. chas says:

  63. chas says:

  64. chas says:

  65. Big Raddy says:

    Morning All,

    Been laid low by nasty disease. This morning the first time in a week I am able to sit in front of computer. Still feel like shit.

    Lots to write about but first need to read back and assess the mood.

    UTG

  66. VP of Oz says:

    Wally and for all the analytics on this site…
    The best that I could find on Arsenal finances from FY16 comes from –
    https://www.arsenaltrust.org/news/2016/ast-analysis-of-arsenals-finances-for-201516

    I highlight the following (from the above link) but am being selective –

    Arsenal sit tenth in the European club table of commercial income meaning they are in the second tier of commercial income earners behind the likes of Chelsea, Dortmund and Liverpool, who all receive over £100m pa, but well ahead of clubs like Spurs who are not Champions League regulars and earn around £60m pa. The game at the top level in Europe is becoming increasingly polarised, leading to a less competitive Champions League. The super-rich Clubs are generating ever larger commercial revenues off the pitch through sponsorships and merchandise sales linked to success in the Champions League, with its large bonuses and TV-related payments.

    Our concern remains that Arsenal’s position as a top 10 spending club critically relies on annual Champions League participation (€50m+ pa), and that participation extending support to match day incomes and higher level sponsorship deals. Arsenal spend all their income on the team at present so a long term major loss of income implies belt tightening, at least in relation to competitors.

    Whilst United have been able to brush off missing out on Champions League qualification due to their logic-defying commercial revenue growth, other clubs, such as Chelsea and Arsenal, are more likely to be affected by losing that source of income. Whilst clubs like Spurs, Liverpool and Dortmund show annual participation is not a pre-requisite to having a competitive team, it would certainly up the risk profile of the club and probably result in top players leaving, which is why it is perhaps wise some level of cash is held back in reserve.

    *********

    Now I’m not privy to Arsenal commercial contractual provisions but it would be extremely remiss of the paying parties if performance clauses are not built in as this is standard business practice

    and an example would be (that I referred to earlier) –
    United’s world record £750million kit deal with sportswear giants Adidas will be cut by 30 per cent under the terms of their ten-year deal.

    The contract has a clause which rules the Adidas commitment would drop massively if United fail to make it into the Champions League for two successive years.

    *******

    Now dont get me wrong. I cant predict the future and hope for the best for all concerned ie. Arsenal, Arsene and the fans

    I can only support, UTG

  67. mickydidit89 says:

    Morning all

    VP
    €53M was our CL revenue from last season (of which 31 TV)
    You’re right, that bit would dry up immediately and the sponsorship stuff later (although I don’t know what clauses are in those)

    In short, no CL, no expensive striker under the Stan regime, me thinks

  68. Eddie says:

    vp – ha ha ha ha, you made me laugh “Arsenal spend all their income on the team at present” 🙂 🙂

  69. Eddie says:

    you think again micky – there has been CL income for xx years and no expensive striker. Less income from CL means less money in Stan’s purse

    I cannot remember where I read about Kroenke;s income from the AFC, but it is scary, humongous amount plus the price of his shares have quadrupled. It could be bullshit, but it was a well presented piece of shit

  70. Eddie says:

    chas @6:29 – OMG, this is soooo amazing 🙂 My cat just takes food from Bambi and hisses when he wants it back. Stupid pit bull waits till the cat is finished eating his meal, I am disgusted with him

  71. mickydidit89 says:

    Eddie
    Stan takes £3M a year. All relative, for sure 🙂

  72. Eddie says:

    no micky, the £3m pa goes to his other company, his takings are far greater. We are paying for some LLC firm of his.

  73. mickydidit89 says:

    Eddie

    Arsene spent 90M last summer. I don’t think the amount we spend is an issue.

  74. Eddie says:

    micky – tell it to the guys who pay hard earned cash for their season tickets.
    Personally, I don’t care how much we earn, how much we spend, my contribution is so small that I can hardly question any financial affaird of the club. Few years ago, yes, I was a regular at the games, bought lots of Arsenal related goodies, etc. Not now though.

    Players’ wages, Wenger’s wages and Stan’s wages don’t bother me one way or another. BUT the fact that he didn’t invest much in the club but takes out a lot, as opposed to other billionaire owners makes me hate that ugly bastard

  75. Eddie says:

    chas – that’s right they stopped that payment after fans went ballistic. Still, a lot of money that could go into the team

    I am going to email the AA financial consultant and ask for (no doubt lengthy) explanation

  76. GoonerB says:

    Morning all.

    I can totally see why we don’t want to exit the CL. Would definitely much rather stay in it but would still like to feel the club are pushing for something a bit more than just getting into this.

    I can see how the loss of revenue may have the knock on effect to our spending budget as VP pointed out, but similarly I feel that the big clubs (us included) that are successful and look ambitious seem to be more commercially attractive in the same vein.

    On top of this I would imagine that young oversees fans, who are looking for a club to nail their mast to, will often be swayed by the club(s) of the moment. Securing or not securing their allegiance probably has long term commercial implications and in any given time periods of modern football I would imagine generations of football fans that will be adults in “x” years could be secured or lost, and possibly their offspring.

    Further than this top players (pure money and greed aside with some of them) tend to graduate towards clubs that have a chance of winning things, or seem to be on an upward pathway towards this. These top players further add to the commercial attractiveness of the club and the kudos to new young fans (that could remain indefinite fans of the club).

    At the moment I think that what we are gaining in the immediate safety of CL money we are potentially losing through a downgrade of the clubs image and standing in the game. I harbour a feeling that we have been slipping recently in our standings in all these various top 10’s for this and that which refer to a clubs size, value, commercial revenue e.t.c. It is a tricky one in how safe do you play it and what is the risk / reward in taking a slightly less safe route, but one that could reap even greater benefits.

  77. mickydidit89 says:

    Lads lads lads

    Don’t get me wrong. I don’t care what Stan takes. If I had 700M invested in something, I’d bloody well want a return and I’m not just talking asset value.

    All I was saying was that we have plenty of money to spend, but we do need CL football.

  78. Big Raddy says:

    Spurs and Liverpool have done OK without CL.

    In Spurs case, I would say their total lack of any success whatsoever this century has strengthened them to the point where they may have another chance of ignominious failure in the CL again next season.

  79. GoonerB says:

    For the record, (from a pure transfer activity aspect, because I agree with Micky it is not just about what we have or haven’t spent), I think we lost our momentum that summer when we got Cech. Having secured Ozil and Sanchez and looking to have the momentum and be on an upward trend, we didn’t buy any outfield player.

    Wasn’t it a stat that we were the only club in any of the professional leagues that didn’t buy an outfield player? We got the “nothing available that is better than what we already have” line.

    The problem was that we did have a big squad, but a ruthless assessment would indicate that we needed improvements of quality in key positions.

    I have often thought that with certain players Arsene is overly emotionally attached to them, and has a determination to see certain players become absolute world class, possibly when that is not possible.

    On the former point It is an admirable ethical quality to care enough about players that he doesn’t just see them as a commodity that can be discarded or used, and he has that moral stance that he doesn’t want to upset them or negatively affect their career. I wonder though if this really has much of a place in the modern game and whether the top top managers now require a more ruthless streak.

    I would question how much you can ruin someones life anyway who can just move somewhere else still on extremely high wages that will see them retire a multi millionaire.

    On players becoming world class it seems the more that certain (favoured) players receive public criticism the more Arsene digs his heels in and sticks with them in an effort to prove everyone wrong. Now he has actually proven us wrong before on a few occasions, but I personally think he now applies this ethos in too many instances, with many players who will only reach a certain level no matter how much of a genius coach he is. Holding out too long on these players while letting potential better options pass us by is something I feel has hampered us.

  80. Eddie says:

    Raddy is back 🙂 what’s that nasty disease you had – a cold?
    In your absence I allowed myself some spur loving moments comments 🙂

  81. LB says:

    A very, very nasty disease……hmmmmmm…..it can only be one thing.

    Man Flu

  82. Big Raddy says:

    Eddie. You will hopefully never go through the week I had last week. Suffice to say I lost almost 5 kg and am still poorly.

    Thankfully, the weather has been rubbish, the football the same.

  83. Eddie says:

    raddy – I would love to lose 5kg 🙂 Good to hear you are on the mend now! Agree about footy and weather, dismal times all around.

    I was sick as a pig last weekend too, but gained weight, comfort eating

  84. Agree with Eddie, good to see you back Raddy.

    Was it homosexual panic Raddy? I had such an episode after Marc Overmars scored at Old Trafford. Lost 8 kilos, so fitted perfectly into skinny jeans, Lycra vests, and tight fitting underpants.

  85. fatgingergooner says:

    They thought Kroenke had the same thing after he lost 5kg overnight. Turned out he’d just lost his wallet!

  86. Eddie says:

    fattie – do you think that super rich have wallets? Is not as if they had to have a pound for the trolley, another pound for the Big Issue, Tesco loyalty card, Sainsbyry’s special offer orange coupons…what would they need a wallet for?

    terry – you are so mad that I actually regret rejecting your advances. At least I would have lots of laughs with you 🙂

  87. Big Raddy says:

    Terry, 😀 😀

    Loved your “single personality disorder.” More TM genius.

  88. Eddie says:

    ooohh, some unrest at Bayern Munich, ooohh this could go in our favour “Bayern Munich release angry statement about Philipp Lahm’s retirement and his treatment of the club”

  89. chas says:

  90. chas says:

  91. Big Raddy says:

    Morning All,

    Good to see chas in fine form

  92. Big Raddy says:

    I am really bored so will write a post. May put it up today, may not. I am that bored.

    Not a lot happening on the footie front except a discussion as to whether the FA is fit for purpose.!!!

    Talk about easy money. Who pays for the discussion which must surely be an excuse for a lad’s piss up at an expensive venue.

  93. chas says:

    Hey, this is what’s going on on the Arsenal footie front – a ‘call to arms’ for Wenger haters.

    Sometimes I just despair.

    http://le-grove.co.uk/2017/02/08/arsenal-fans-wake-up-and-mobilize/

  94. LB says:

    Superb read.

  95. mickydidit89 says:

    Erik
    You bastard!!!! I caught your bloody disease and I’m a thousand miles away.

  96. mickydidit89 says:

    Chas

    Last night I read your call to arms article 🙂
    They can’t decide whether to wave hankies, sing a song or clap 🙂
    Say 100 bloggers there. Say 30 go to games. Say 10 have, or would know where to go to get, hankies.
    The plan is to wave furiously on say the 70th minute
    What happens if: on 69 minutes, Danny rounds their keeper to secure his hat-trick?

    Stan: “Why are 10 people waving hankies?”
    Ivan: “surrendering, I guess”
    Stan: “Oh”

  97. Big Raddy says:

    Sorry Micky. Mea Colpa

  98. chas says:

    Micky
    It was most definitely not ‘my’ call to arms article.

    Have you tried this for your lergy?

  99. mickydidit89 says:

    No, but I did eye the cocaine tincture rather enviously yesterday

  100. chas says:

    Still off the fags?

  101. mickydidit89 says:

    Chas
    I know it wasn’t yours, but it really cheered me up reading the comments. An 8yr old could organise a better revolution. All I could think of was Rik 🙂

  102. Big Raddy says:

    Given the choice of medicines, I think the bottle which is disguised as Tawny post is the obvious winner.

  103. Big Raddy says:

    7.13. Wish I could paint like that. Looks simple but really isn’t.

  104. mickydidit89 says:

    Right now Erik, I’d go for a cocktail of the two. Stick a brolly and a cherry in it and wallop. All better.

  105. Eddie says:

    FA reform: MPs pass ‘no confidence’ motion after House of Commons debate – excellent news

  106. Big Raddy says:

    Eddie. The whole thing is a joke. Politicians being paid to assess the work of the FA on YOUR tax money?

    The answer was obvious.

    Next there will be a committee to investigate the findings of the politicians.

    And guess what? Nothing will change. Nothing. There is corruption from top to bottom. Old school tie and vested interest will prevent any change for the Fat Cats at the FA

  107. Big Raddy says:

    There is a New Post

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