2017. How was it for You?

It’s been an odd 2017, hasn’t it?

Will he stay/should he go being one of the main talking points (AW/AS/MO/JW/HB etc). Team played some great football, some lamentable football, some boring football and some football which got you out of your seat marvelling at the sheer ingenuity of the interplay. Probably not enough of the latter.

We have seen Guardiola transform an average team into one of the best ever (but not THE Best ever). Pocchettino take the Miscreants to un-imagined heights, coaching The Plumber (Harry Kane) into one of the world’s top strikers. Merinho reducing United into an expensive Stoke. Klopp making Liverpool the best viewing in the PL. Chavs winning the PL by a huge margin yet remaining unconvincing.

Add in the fairytale seasons for Brighton and Huddersfield and we have a fine year of football.


My highlight of 2017? Unquestionably Per Mertesacker’s performance in the FA Cup Final. Magnificent doesn’t do him justice.

Giroud’s wondergoal came a distant second.

What was yours?

Like countless others I am a regular listener to the Arseblog podcast (the man deserves to be knighted for his services to Arsenal). Arseblog talked recently about how he is not sure that he “likes” the current Arsenal team.  This got me thinking and I have to say I agree with him. Individually I enjoy watching Ozil, Ramsey, Sanchez etc but as a team? Do they compare in terms of enjoyable watching with other teams from the last few decades? Not in my opinion.


Where is the swagger, the humour or the spirit of other teams, whether it be Merson’s insanity, Adams determination, Wrighty’s enthusiasm, Thierry’s brilliance, PV4’s domination, Pires’ elegance or Santi’s humour which were the essence of those teams? There is none of that. We have become industrial; yes, Ozil is a wonderful player but will be remembered as a true Gooner in 15 years?  I want someone to make me smile.  I want goals, and Yes, I want us to win, but above all I want to be entertained.

Perhaps this is why we have such high ambitions for Wilshere.

This being my final PM of the year please give me some licence – I am not going to write about how we should beat the team rooted to the bottom of the table who haven’t scored twice at home since March, Nor will I do the team etc etc. You can fill in the gaps …

From an AA point of view it has also been a hard year. Fewer visitors, fewer bloggers, fewer people prepared to write posts and add flavour/variety to the opinions on the site. Will AA survive to see NYE in 2018? Who knows but we are here today and in my capacity as a long-term AA’er we wish all who read the blog a very Happy New Year.

And Come On You Rip Roaring Gunners



111 Responses to 2017. How was it for You?

  1. mickydidit89 says:

    Let me begin by thanking Erik and Chas, without whom there would be no blog. Thanks fellas.

    Erik, agree with your annual synopsis. As a club we are stale in my opinion, however, there were very bright moments in ’17 as you point out. I’ll dwell on those.

    As for today, it’s three or four at the back, so M-N/Iwobi/Beast being the variables.

    Goals what count.

  2. chas says:

    Thanks, BR, plenty to ponder.

    How was it for me?
    Well the FA Cup semi and final certainly made the Earth tremble,but aside from that, I’ve been more or less celibate football-wise.

    My disconnect with the players and money-driven football in general continues to grow.

    Hoping for a fine performance at The Hawthorns today. Last season we were absolute shite there, possibly our worst performance of the season. You owe us one, boys.

  3. LB says:

    Now that is the true definition of a fine post, a post written with love and devotion. A special thank you from me for all the pre-match posts that I have had the pleasure to read through out the year.


  4. Rasp says:

    Thanks for all your hard work Raddy, and for the consistent brilliance of your pre-match posts … and a Happy New Year to all who frequent AA.

    Thanks also to chas for all he does on the blog and behind the scenes.

    The FA cup victories over city and the chavs are definitely the highlight. Watching Ozil play has been a joy and the re-emergence of Jack brings us hope. Lacazette is a better player than many judge and maybe the team will learn to exploit his quality better as the season progresses.

    It’s hard not to see most of the negatives this year as self inflicted, but there is always the chance of putting things right in the New Year.

    We have to improve our management of players’ contracts … other clubs do a better job.

    My New Year’s wish for Arsenal is for greater harmony, consistency and determination.

  5. mickydidit89 says:


    I’ve been thinking about your analysis of managers.

    I’d agree about the entertainment provided by Guardiola and Klopp.

    I reckon Spuds under Pocch may have peaked, Conte ditto, however, I reserve the greatest agreement and joy over the dire football we don’t have to watch at Old Trafford. What an awful manager 🙂

  6. VP of Oz says:

    A GREat post BR in which to finish the year. I’ve actually enjoyed watching the team evolve these last few seasons and am happy with the journey so far and the trophies that it represents. I again repeat what I’ve said before, Manure have spent almost a billion dollars and most of the players are not starting 11 material and they still need to spend hundreds of millions more, that’s a journey I’m glad we’re not on.

    And finally for Chas

    A German chef who made me a kransky like he hadn when he was a boy. A nice last meal before 2018

  7. mickydidit89 says:

    Cheers VP

    We love local snack pics

  8. chas says:

    Cheers, VP, I’d not heard of a kransky before – looks tasty.

    Look what popped up on twitter.

  9. mickydidit89 says:

    Cruyff and Viv Anderson?

  10. mickydidit89 says:

    di Stefano?

  11. chas says:

    That Viv Anderson crops up everywhere!

    Rinus Michels

  12. chas mobile says:

    Haha, shame Palace couldn’t scrape a winner.

  13. jjgsol says:

    Thank you for an enjoyable blogg with reasoned arguments, and, above all, no insults, either of fellow bloggists or Aw and the team.

    The end of year report would read, not a bad year, but could do better.

    Have a happy and healthy New Year.

  14. chas mobile says:

    Shit, didn’t realise Palace missed a pen

  15. chas says:

    …… in injury time!

  16. Big Raddy says:

    Thank you for the kind words.

    Shame the CP numbskull missed the penalty.

  17. chas says:

  18. chas says:

    Venga obvs didn’t see LB’s 4 for Chambers.

  19. chas says:

    Mesut must be injured

  20. Rasp says:

    Chambers/Bellerin combo again 🙄

  21. Rasp says:

    Is Holding injured?

  22. Big Raddy says:

    Hope Mesut is injured and not rested due to a visit to Madrid or Barcelona

  23. chas says:

    This is what Sanchez listens to on his head-phones before a game.

  24. Big Raddy says:

    That is terrible music, simply terrible

  25. mickydidit89 says:

    Mesut and Ollie obviously being flogged 🙂

  26. Big Raddy says:

    4.02 Now that is some decent music

  27. Big Raddy says:

    Iwobi needs to learn to finish.

  28. fatgingergooner says:

    Iwobi badly needs some goals to get some confidence in front of goal. His finishing looks panicked every time he has a chance. Oddly though he scores goals for his country!

  29. fred1266 says:

    Why isn’t lacazette touching the ball

  30. fatgingergooner says:

    We miss so much when Özil doesn’t play. He’s very important to our structure and the way we play through the lines and he’s probably the only player on the pitch who has a real understanding with Sanchez.

    Whilst Sanchez would also be a huge loss, with him its more the unexpected bit of quality and unpredictability that he brings, something that we could probably find elsewhere or we can alter the way we play to be a little more structured and maybe play someone who’s lightning quick and stays high up on that left side.

    I think replacing Özil would be a very difficult task.

  31. fred1266 says:

    Iwobi needs to stop slowing down the play

  32. mickydidit89 says:

    I wouldn’t describe this as gripping stuff

  33. mickydidit89 says:

    Ahhhhh, got it, we’re playing for time

  34. Aaron says:

    Niles on makes me happy!
    See if he can link up with Sanchez better..

  35. fatgingergooner says:

    Looking very tired at the end of this half. It’s ok Sanchez coming deep and looking good, but by doing that he’s not occupying any West Brom defenders which is making it very hard for Lacazette to find space.

  36. chas mobile says:

    A. M-N (Con) oozing confidence and a complete disregard for the working classes.

  37. chas mobile says:

    I’m hoping for a Giroud header in the last minute and he’s not even playing.

  38. chas mobile says:

  39. Big Raddy says:

    Well, that half was all that annoys me about this team. No pace, passes going back to Xhaka and JW, no creation apart from the tippy-tappy-edge-of-the-box stuff we have seen season after season.

    Keep this up and we could lose

  40. mickydidit89 says:

    Keep this up for another 10 minutes Erik, and I won’t be here to see it happen 🙂

  41. fred1266 says:

    Surely Walcott is a better of than Iwobi

  42. mickydidit89 says:

    Right, early bath for me.

  43. fatgingergooner says:

    If Walcott comes on and plays high on the right then that’s when we want Sanchez dropping into the 10 and floating those little balls he does over the top of the West Brom defence. That might be the answer because this isn’t working.

  44. chas mobile says:

    Nil Nil written all over it

  45. Big Raddy says:

    We are “enjoying” plenty of possession

  46. mickydidit89 says:

    Ok, back for the goal rush

  47. Big Raddy says:

    VP. Hope you didn’t stay up until 4 or 5 a.m to watch this

    Have a great night. See you in 2018.

  48. mickydidit89 says:

    I highly recommend bathing DURING a game

  49. chas mobile says:

  50. fatgingergooner says:


  51. chas mobile says:

    Fuck, we’re pathetic

  52. Aaron says:

    you knew dean would F it up for the Arsenal.
    How is it that Arsenal only have a crappy record with 2 refs in the entire EPL??

  53. fatgingergooner says:

    We’ve done everything we needed to in fairness but we’ve been cheated by an absolutely shocking decision.

  54. Rasp says:

    Hmmm …. well its now clear that AW should target winning the Europa League because that is our best chance of Champion’s league football next season.

  55. chas mobile says:

    Sorry, didn’t realise it was yet another mugging off from a referee.

  56. chas mobile says:

  57. chas mobile says:

  58. LB says:

    Right enough of that, lets get drunk.

    Happy New Year.

  59. chas says:

  60. chas says:

    If Mr Cool is upset, you know it was a shit decision.

  61. An interesting year for arsenal. A team with match winning potential but needing match saving potential? Interesting when you compare them to others…

  62. fatgingergooner says:

    I think we have a good chance of finishing top 4 given that we have played some very tough fixtures in comparison to others around us. I expected United to drop and that has started already. Once the CL and FA Cup starts then I think our position will improve.

    Having said all of that, it very much depends on our home form and making sure we win some matches against the teams around us. That starts against Chelsea in what will be a difficult test without Koscielny and possibly Özil whilst they have had an extra day and rested Fabregas and Hazard.

  63. VP of Oz says:

    Well that game sums up my NYE, a long tedious wait (7hrs), a few minutes of brilliance (12mins of fireworks magic) and then a very disappointing end (stuck in a crush of people for 2hrs to catch a bus home singing wonderwall). What was worse was that Crystal Palace penalty miss

    Got home in time for kick-off,started watching but fell asleep…

    Well thats enough draws for me, wishing everyone a great new year and a Gunners New Year run of wins that sees us finishing top 3, holding up the FA Cup and Europa Cup trophies, new contract for Ozil, 3 new players in Jan that – strengthen the defence, a new Viera in midfield and a brilliant left wing… and then I’ll fly over for a few games in 2018, pop in to trick and treat Eddie with the kids (more of a knock and run effort), catch a train to a game with the Vine brothers (I’m still not 100% who they are all so I’ll just go with ant, chas, fumbunker and maybe didit, rasp in there as as well for good measure) and provide them with aussie beverages and snacks (VB and Samboys), do a wheres Fred routine, meet up with the Oracle for some advice (Peaches), discuss/dispute team selections, formations, coaching, transfers and vision with GN5, FGG, LB and BR whilst pondering the latest Transplant versions of the same (the ghosts of the 30’s) …

    and then I woke up

    Happy New Year everyone

  64. mickydidit89 says:

    Great stuff VP 👍
    Happy New Year to you all

  65. Eddie says:

    happy New Year to all AAers and families!! I wish you above all the CL cup xx

  66. mickydidit89 says:

    From yesterday’s comments, and one from Chas in particular, I cannot shake off the image of him at a home game.

    Marching from his seat to the front of the top tier, leaning over and shouting: “Oi, Maitland-Niles, you have a total disregard for the working classes”

    Then back to his seat 🙂 🙂

  67. Eddie says:

    not a good way to start the New Year but I am still fooking fuming over that alleged penalty. I want to kill that prick ref, front bottom

  68. mickydidit89 says:

    bugger, didn’t work

    Eddie, really? I mean it was crap and we only scored one goal. Hadly deserved medals

  69. mickydidit89 says:

    ok I quit trying

  70. Eddie says:

    I have a man flu again and wasn’t sure if it was my temperature making me so dopey and but I guess it was a shit game. However, we scored fair and square, they didn’t. And the penalty was amongst 10 worst refereeing decision I have ever seen.

  71. Eddie says:

    dog looks like my Bambi, nice pit

  72. Eddie says:

    you are a stubborn old fool Didit, how many times does chas have to tell you link needs to end with .gif or .jpg??

    right click on the vid and chose ‘Open in new window’. See the small pic of the pit? click on it, it will open in on a blank page. the address is your .gif file. Got it?

  73. mickydidit89 says:

    Ok Miss Techy, nice work. Did you have to copy it into Twitter?

  74. Eddie says:

    No!!! try following my instructions for once

  75. mickydidit89 says:

    Transfer window is open 🙂

  76. Eddie says:

    ok, a bit better instructions
    right click on the vid and chose ‘Open in new window’.

    go to the newly open window

    See the small pic of the pit? just
    click on it, it will open in on a blank page. the address is your .gif file

  77. Eddie says:

    oh ffs 🙂

  78. chas mobile says:

    Have we signed ànyone yet?

  79. Eddie says:

    Raddy – I have only read the post now, I really was very ill yesterday. What a magnificent summary of the past year! Well done and a big thank you

    “Merinho reducing United into an expensive Stoke” – that cheered me up no end 🙂

    yep, this team is not a unit, just randomly assembled structure that at time is very wonky. I dissed Wenger’s team building in the past, but I have to admit that we did have teams that acted as such. No more. I cannot even fall in love with any of them. Ozil is perhaps nearest and dearest, but even he does not have the hallmarks of a Gunner. The rest of them – mercenaries and Jack who cannot make the difference on his own.

  80. chas says:

  81. mickydidit89 says:

    ha ha ha that is brilliant

  82. chas says:

  83. Big Raddy says:

    Morning All,

    chas. Thanks for some wonderful pics this morning. I particularly enjoyed 9.49.

    I turned off the game before the goals which was lucky because instead of seething at a disgraceful Deanism I enjoyed a night of mead and merriment.

  84. Eddie says:

    I prefer ‘Thanks for the clarification, Dad’, stupid man

  85. chas says:

  86. fatgingergooner says:

    At the time I thought Mike Dean was saying ‘I called it’ as in, it was his decision, because just before this Wenger was having a go at the linesman or 4th official as he thought they’d contributed to the decision.


    Cheers Raddy

    Happy New Year? Last night, pissed off with the result, the Cabbie was dropping me off wished me a good one? I replied “you don’t really mean that”. Looking surprised we ended up in an argument about the hypocrisy of New Years social etiquette with me ending it by saying “happy double fare, what about that?”

    Exposing him as a money grabber made me feel good. Besides, New Year was invented by Julius Ceaser, a bit of Twat who I’ve always suspected was a non local Utd fan.

    Mike Dean does not understand football. As a stand in Sunday League referee I to have given wanky penalties like him and been chased round the park by angry men armed with corner flags, and even more worryingly, a high powered football pump. I bet you what you like that, like me, Dean is an expert tree climber with a fear of penetrating air.

    We didn’t play well, but if it wasn’t for Dean we would have been credited with the nonsensical cliche of grinding out a win whilst playing shit? In life we all need the blanket of minimising unneeded intellectual debate, this is why I like Graham Souness.

    In essence, Dean has forced us to end the calendar year questioning our ability as a team, sexual adequacy, and wether we are now on a mini cab black list.

    The Ghosts of the Thirties are Stirring

  88. chas says:

    “we all need the blanket of minimising unneeded intellectual debate” 🙂

    If you’re still pissed off at Mike Dean have a look at this chap.

  89. chas says:

  90. mickydidit89 says:

    ha ha ha h haaaaa HA

    Two classics from Chas and pure class from Transplant. Happiness

  91. mickydidit89 says:

    Massive shitballs. Was looking forward to a day of laughing at other sides’ misfortunes

    Burnley equalise in 87th. Pool win it in 94th!

    Still, high hopes for Everton v Utd

  92. Big Raddy says:

    Pool win with an offside goal in Fergietime. We get shafted by a dreadful biased referee.

  93. Eddie says:

    I am watching Sleeping Beauty. Is this a sign of dementia? What do you recon Terry?


    Don’t worry Eddie, it’s not dementia.

    Sleeping Beauty is a fascinating psychological masterpiece exploring humanity’s base and primal fears. A bit like finding a Totnumb fan attractive or meeting Tony Blair and enjoying his company.

    It’s longevity is sealed in that it appeals to both sexes. Men so desperate for a bird that they are willing to combat an evil fairy’s curse and have a drink with Tony Blair, and women, reeked with such immense anxiety about making the right choice for a mate, that just in case he is the one, they are prepared to go on a date with Garth Crooks.

    On the other hand Eddie, you may be watching it because it is mildly entertaining?

  95. Big Raddy says:

    Everton held their own in the first half. Rubbish in the second.

  96. Big Raddy says:

    Terry. You are wasted as an accountant.

  97. Big Raddy says:

    Morning A,,

    Rubbish results yesterday., expect more of the same today.

    Transfer window. Guess this will be the subject of a post or two in the coming weeks.

  98. chas says:


  99. chas says:


  100. Eddie says:

    not many of the 6:46 wags would make it to the starting XI now.

    I was going out with a footballer once, until Terry (or was it my mother) stepped in and ridiculed him until I couldn’t even look at him

  101. Big Raddy says:

    Eddie. Jon Sammels has an eye for the ladies.

  102. Big Raddy says:

    There is a New Post

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: