The Armchair Gooner

An Arsenal blog bringing you news, opinion and humour on a daily basis. Well, I'll try at the very least…

Balotelli to Sign (Rumours), Daley Blind, Velociraptors and Stuff.

“Errr, Help…”

Morning, folks.

As we wind down from disappointment and look forward to an FA Cup tie with Liverpool on Sunday, the news in between invariably drops off. Sometimes, I kinda like this; having nothing of any particular note usually brings out my creative side and gives me the freedom to write pretty much anything I please.

I’m fully aware that upsets some folks, but, hey – there are plenty of Arsenal blogs out there that are serious and provided statistics and such things. This is one of the sillier publications I’m afraid. On that note, I’m going to discuss the latest ‘big name’ rumour doing the rounds – these stories don’t stop, regardless of the time of year – Mario Balotelli’s representatives are alleged to have met with Arsene Wenger to thrash out a deal.

Okay, sounds total poppycock, right? Right. It’s probably utter tripe and should be paid no attention. However, I feel that I should give an opinion on this, purely because I’m not sure it’s a particularly good idea. Mario is undoubtedly talented, but he is a special kind of crazy. Bonkers. Mental. Loopy. Fruitcake.

By now, you might be pondering why today’s title mentions Velociraptors. There isn’t much to link those fearsome Jurassic beasts and their carnivorous  antics with Arsenal Football Club. The reason it’s in there is because I think signing Balotelli would be akin to starting a Velociraptor up front. Can you imagine the unpredictability of it?  One of those bloody monsters tearing around the turf at lightning speed attacking opponents and upsetting Gunnersaurus – that’s the impact I could see Super Mario having on the team. Completely disruptive.

Admittedly, I’d be in favour of staring a Velociraptor in the lone striking role against Chelsea. I can only imagine the hilarity of watching John Terry try to mark one.

Elsewhere today, I came across some discussion about our current incumbents of the holding midfield role. Perhpas a little unfairly, some have started to brand Arteta as “too old” after a few performances not up to his usual high standard. After a few wobbles early on, I thought he was one of our better players against United. Now that both he and Flamini and getting on in years, lots of names get mentioned in passing as potential replacements.

I’ve seen lots of talk, but very little as well backed up as this piece written for Goonersphere by Willem Gonggrijp about Ajax’s Daley Blind. Here’s a snippet:

“Being as selfless as his position demands, Daley Blind always makes himself available for a pass when Ajax are in possession, orchestrating Ajax’ play in their defensive and middle third as they go along. Playing as a third centre back one moment to improve Ajax’ options when building from the back, Blind’s great engine allows him to move up the pitch as attacks go on, redistributing the ball all over the pitch as the team patiently tries to find an opening, allowing the full backs to push up at the same time, because they know Blind won’t let them down in transitions”

It’s an excellent read and I suggest you give it a few minutes of your time.

Lastly today, I want to point you toward the latest Goonerpshere Podcast. Joining Daniel and I for this week’s show are FK (@FKhanage) and  Willem (@BergkampFlick).

Up for discussion is the abysmal Liverpool game, the chance to bounce back against United, big game jitters, Sagna’s contract and a Valentine’s treat; a sexy face-off between the sultry tones of FK and Willem. Plus usual features “Listeners Questions”, “Goonersphere Shoutout” and “Goonersphere Prick of the Week”.

(Note: This podcast is explicit in nature and is probably not suitable for children, unless you are a really bad parent or a really cool one depending how you look at it)

Enjoy!

Click here to listen in a new window

Click here to listen in iTunes

Subscribe to the feed

Watch/listen on YouTube and subscribe to our channel

Save MP3 by right clicking and choose “Save As”

Click here if you are listening via 3G/4G

That’s all for today, folks. I shall humbly point you toward the comments where you can discuss the news until your heart’s content. Tomorrow I shall return at the usual time with a bit more stuff.

As always thanks for reading (and listening), you beautiful bastards.

Category: Arsenal
  • Ray says:

    Seriously, I hope these rumours are well off the mark because surely even Wenger realises how much damage this guy does for team morale and football in general? He will spend most of his time serving ban after ban after ban. How would that help?
    He’s a spoilt idiot who is probably desperate to move (again) to another club who are equally desperate!
    Please tell me it’s not true!!!!

    February 14, 2014 at 11:07 am
  • nijwm says:

    hi james, i have a question for you or perhaps a predicament. would you prioritize the liverpool FA cup tie or the Bayern 1st leg? i’m almost sure wenger will not pick the strongest 11 for the liverpool game, but should he do the opposite and tell his team to give absolutely everything to beat liverpool because the FA cup is perhaps the best chance for a silverware this season.

    or should he balance the two games and rest some players for the pool game so the strongest team can play against bayern? here, the danger is that a weakened arsenal team might be beaten by liverpool or worse, battered again like the 5-1. in the worst case scenario of course, arsenal might lose both matches. given the injuries, fatigue, and consecutive difficult games, what do you think we should do? oh and is there a replay in case we draw the game with liverpool?

    February 14, 2014 at 11:21 am
    • James 'Raul' Stokes says:

      @nijwm: If I had to pick one, I’d go after the FA Cup as I think it’s our best chance of winning something.

      February 14, 2014 at 1:18 pm
    • Shame old arsenal says:

      Yes my friend, there would be a replay if we draw with Liverpool.
      As for fielding a strong team for this game… we don’t have much to choose from really.

      February 14, 2014 at 1:19 pm
  • Tr♋️🍺⚽️ says:

    Nijwm
    I know it seems like a predicament, particularly for those so impatient for some sort of silverware , but the priority has to be the champions league and the belief that we can progress by putting our best 11 on the park next week.

    February 14, 2014 at 12:33 pm
  • Tr♋️🍺⚽️ says:

    Incidentally I wanted to say that I thought the comment yesterday on the blog was one of the best I have heard for a while particularly after all the doomsayers at le grove , to the effect that if you are not at the training ground and not at the club then you don’t know what is going on, and if Arsene after 20 plus years of experience doesn’t know what he is doing then god help us, but that doesn’t really explain sitting in 2nd at the moment and how many years of cl football. Go ask moyes how tuff that is, even with 2 or 3 world class strikers.

    February 14, 2014 at 12:42 pm
  • Shame old arsenal says:

    Balotelli would have to move in with wenger for this to work.
    Buy him a teddy, tuck him in with a bed time story each night.
    Maybe then, we might see a well behaved balotelli…. naah, who am I kidding.
    No worries, as moaningHO would jump in and save the day… lol.

    February 14, 2014 at 1:29 pm
  • nijjy says:

    thanks for the comments regarding the FA cup/champions league dilemma. personally i think the fa cup is more realistic, and if we win it, the baggage of the trophyless label would go away. more importantly, it would serve as a foundation for more silverware to come. but the most important thing right now is beat liverpool.

    February 14, 2014 at 2:57 pm

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