Tag Archives: Wenger

Chelsea (a): Thoughts, Team News And Predicted Starting XI

Who is that mystical figure to the left?

Morning, folks.

With all the focus on Arsene’s 1000th game, it is quite easy to forget that it happens to be one of Arsenal’s most important games of the season today. Fate has, in no small measure, served up a meeting with Jose Mourinho on a day our manger celebrates a milestone.

Say what you wish about the Portuguese – I’m certainly no fan – but he knows how to win and he’ll use all the unscrupulous methods at his disposal. A trip to Stamford Bridge to play Chelsea is a formidable task indeed. A victory would be sweetest way imaginable to put the “specialist in failure” remarks firmly back from where they came and blow the title race wide open.

The team news has thrown up a few concerns. Continue reading


Filed under Match previews

Arsenal Splash £100m, Sagna, Arsene And The Summer

They offered how much?

Howdy, peeps.

I hope this latest instalment of mine finds you well, nourished and enjoying life.  The weekend still lies on my memory. One thing I’ve often found as a Arsenal fan is that my general mood and enjoyment of daily activities is greatly diminished when the team lose. When they win, the opposite comes into play. Coupled with the joys of spring time, winning a NLD finds me the picture of ebullience today. I’m probably bloody irritating to be around, such is my chipper and spirited mood.

A lot of the talk in newsworld surrounds the summer. When all the hullabaloo dies down about the NLD – especially a certain Mickey Hazard’s hilarious comments accusing Sczsesny of attempting to start a riot by taking a picture on the field at White Hart Lane – things get back to a degree of normality. As the stories being blown out of rational proportion die out, they speculative ones emerge. Such is the nature of news, and Mickey Hazard, who, let’s be honest here, has always been a bit of a cry-baby. Continue reading


Filed under Arsenal

New Contracts For Everybody!! Well… Almost…

Signing your life away…

Morning, folks.

My absence yesterday was due to preparations for the latest Goonersphere Podcast, but luckily my little Scottish friend, Dyllan Munro, was on hand to fill in with with his unique brand of hilarity and unquenchable rage. Big thank you to Dyllan and be sure to keep an eye out as he will be guesting again for me in the future.

Right, without further ado; Arsenal stuff.

It seems there has been an explosion of news about contracts in recent weeks. Previously, much debate has raged between Arsenal fans surrounding the merits of Bacary Sagna and Arsene Wenger and their proposed extensions. Elsewhere, John Henry at Liverpool has opted to make public his bizarre admissions regarding the release clause that, according to his own words, did exist in Luis Suarez’s contract. Liverpool may have set an alarming precedence by choosing to completely ignore such a thing.

Any Suarez deal is a thing of the past and the chances of us purchasing him are long gone. Whilst not entirely legal as I understand, in an environment where players can force moves at their will there is a part of me that agrees with the stance taken by Liverpool; they didn’t wish to sell a vitally important player and simply chose not to do so. Continue reading


Filed under Arsenal

Arteta, The Ox and Arsene, Post-Liverpool Fury and Two Refuse Deals.

The players now feared half-time…

Morning, folks.

As you all probably know, much of the furious anger at Saturday’s defeat is yet to subside. It’s a minefield out there, folks. You need only once inadvertently say the wrong thing – usually positive – to have the combined wrath of Twitter fall upon you.

I wouldn’t really want to dispute with anyone about their right to be angry. God knows, I’m angry. We lost in the most pathetic way imaginable in a game that was of huge significance. Had we taken a moment to envisage the worst case scenario before kick-off, the thoughts and views conjured would probably bare striking resemblance to that which occurred.  It was an altogether sh*tty day – compounded for me by a startling shaving error that resulted in the need to remove the vast majority of my beard. Continue reading


Filed under Arsenal

Coventry Dispatched, Podolski, Zelalem and a Desperate Draxler.

In case you missed the many ‘Emirates at Night’ pictures…

Morning, folks.

One of the perils working as a Chef is the frequency with which you’re required to handle very sharp utensils. Yesterday, whilst handling the aforementioned, I managed to slice through a couple of fingers on my right hand. Painful, and the side effect that I’m just realising is how difficult lacerated digits make it to type efficiently. It’s taken me nearly 4 times as long to write the first paragraph as it would normally.

With that utterly useless piece of information out of the way, let’s move on to discussing the Arsenal fortunes of yesterday. Having watched the game again – I suffer with insomnia – this morning, it was an altogether pleasing experience. As far as spectacles go, I doubt the we’ll be seeing any commemorative DVDs hitting the shelves any time soon, but we progressed to the 5th round scoring 4 goals and beating our opponents with minimal fuss. Continue reading


Filed under Match reviews

Tiny Italian fowards, Rosicky stays and the interminable wait for football.

“But pleeeaaaseee, I can’t wait until Monday”

Morning, folks.

News, news, news. There’s not a lot of news. I really don’t like Arsenal playing on a Monday. The extra little bit of rest afforded to the players is without doubt beneficial, but knowing the weekend will be filled with football action that doesn’t involve Arsenal bothers me. It feels like that moment as a child when you wake up on the 24th of December and think it’s Christmas Day, only be told you have to wait a little bit longer. Kinda…

As you might imagine, with time to kill, most fans and journalists have taken to conjuring tales of potential acquisitions. The latest name to be added to that little is diminutive winger/playmaker Sebastian Giovinco of Juventus. He’s another very good example of my limited knowledge of European football. Continue reading


Filed under Arsenal

Big Match Day: Chelsea (h) – team news, predictions and starting XI

Kick racism out of football.

Morning, folks.

The Manchester City result aroused something in me. That something is the ability to worry about a defence that, up until recently, has been solid, organised and performing to an extremely high level. Perhaps that game was one of those silly moments in football where things just happen without any logical or rational explanations. Perhaps. Regardless of that, I get the impression I shall omit a whimper of some sort the moment any balls arc ominously toward our penalty area.

“Must win” – that’s how the game is described by many, and I’m inclined to agree. Having seen our glorious top spot taken from us by a one-man army in red and a decent points lead whittled away very quickly, the best way to get ourselves back on track is to dispatch a Chelsea side that have floundered and look beatable on their travels. Continue reading


Filed under Match previews

Signings, letters, groups, disharmony and the Champions League.

“Dear Mr Wenger, it is with a heavy heart I must call for your immediate death, and refer to you as a “C” at every given opportunity”

Afternoon, boys ‘n’ girls.

I’m tired. Not a little pooped or weary, but the kind of tired that unleashes delirium and causes me to laugh senselessly at just about anything. I’ve had quite the busy weekend. This post will probably make little or no sense. At present, I’m chuckling to myself. Not entirely sure what about.


Where do we go from here? Tough question. Out there in Goonerland is a huge amount of negativity, unrest and temper tantrums. Some of you are calling for Arsene Wenger to be publicly flayed and shot, others have their blinkers on, eager to muster up whatever excuses they can.

I believe we will make signings. I believe they might not be especially well planned acquisitions, and unlikely to be the kind of huge marquee arrival we’re all hoping for. Arsene Wenger is like one of those dithery old ladies you encounter in Tesco; happy to spend 45 minutes perusing the biscuit section, only to be forced to frantically fill the shopping basket once the PA system announces the shop closes in 10 minutes.

It still baffles me why we didn’t set set out to conduct our business in the early months of pre-season. Others managed to do so with minimal fuss. Excuses regarding the difficulty and availability of players strike me as weak attempts to placate those of us who questions the Club’s actions.  It baffles me, but it’s entirely irrelevant.

What’s important is the now. We can all harp-on about what could, or should, have been done as much as we like. It changes nothing. My focus is on what will be done going forward. Champions League qualification is very far from assured, and perhaps our ability to recruit still hangs by that delicate thread. Defeat in Turkey could have more than just financial implications.

As fans, our paramount concern should be to get behind the players. Our current group might be small, but they have talent and there’s some fighters amongst them. They need us. It’s far from their fault the situation they find themselves in. Jeers and songs of displeasure, regardless of how warranted, won’t help during the 90 minutes of game time.

Suppoeter groups and open-ended letters to the board are all well and good. I’ve never been one for that kind of thing, personally. No set of initials represent my views, I do. That’s not meant to disparage those groups at all. Some of them I agree with whole-heartedly, others strike me as pompous and run by self-important cretins who just like to hear themselves speak.  My advice to everyone reading would be to make up your own minds, and remember that these groups only represent you if you choose them to.

Moving forward, I hope to see change of some variety. Arsenal have had an appalling start and it was absolutely avoidable.  Few can dispute Wenger has made mistakes, but his ability to rectify what has occurred is what counts now. He still can turn the tide, but his days may well be numbered if he chooses to offer up more excuses.

As per usual, all we can do is wait and see.

That’s all for today folks. I’m now going to have a nap. Yes – I do feel like an elderly man stating such things, but my eyes are so heavy at this point, I don’t particularly care. I’ll head to the comments to read a few of your thoughts once I’ve woken up.

As always: thanks for reading, you beautiful bastards.


Filed under News

Arsene “works hard to strengthen squad” and Suarez’s transfer request.

“So Luis, you’ve submitted a transfer request. You do realise we have Raheem Sterling, don’t you? He’s better than Ronaldo….”

Morning folks.

At this point in time, I should be darting towards the Big Smoke on a train with Daniel Cowan to attend the Emirates Cup. I am not. For a few personal reasons it wouldn’t be appropriate for me to discuss (No – I’ve not been arrested…), I’m missing out on that particular jolly today.

Right, onto the news of the day.

Yesterday, Arsene held his first press conference, and, as is customary, something he said upset quite a few people. Quite why such a thing occurred is beyond my comprehension. Our commander had these words to say regarding transfers:

“I am a great believer you have to keep as much confidentiality as possible, which is quite difficult in the modern world.

“But we work very hard, not only on the case you name, but on other different cases. We can still strengthen the squad, there is one month to go. We are at the beginning of August and working very hard to strengthen our squad.

“I am confident. You look at many teams around us. Nothing has happened until now. At the moment the market hasn’t moved a lot. Apart from Manchester City, nobody has done anything.”

There’s nothing in those words I disagree with, or that I’m inclined to disbelieve. Yet so many took it as a defeatist statement, happily extracting every perceived subtext and distorting into to fit their bewildered opinions of our manager. Personally, I took it for what it was; just about the only thing he could say whilst remaining respectful to whomever we may do business with, and reassuring fans that the wheels are in motion.

Undoubtedly, we’d all be happier and in greater comfort had our transfer business been concluded weeks ago. Most of the petulant squabbles I witness on Twitter, and the feeling of unease amongst fans wouldn’t be so prevalent if we all had some swanky new players to gaze dotingly upon.

However, as I regularly find myself typing, there is still time. Arsenal are not known for broadcasting their intent to purchase. Behind the scenes, there could be a frenzy of activity. We just have to take it on faith that results will soon come. Of course, it’s just a possible Dick Law is locked in his home weeping at his own failure, and come September 2nd, the entire internet with explode with ITK and WOB fury.


Further developments in the Luis Suarez saga have emerged. Much debate has taken place regarding his contract clause. Some think a bid in excess of £40m entitles him to gleefully prance out of Anfield. Others feel the ball is in Liverpool’s court, and they have no obligation to sell if they choose not to.

Speculation from several ‘sources’ (Jesus…) states Suarez will begin to agitate for a move, with a written request for transfer possible, as is legal action should Liverpool further prevent his departure.

At this point, I don’t know what to think. The whole grubby process of rumour and counter-rumour has become utterly tedious now. With such an array of bullsh*t clogging up most avenues of news, ascertaining what might contain an iota of truth is such a arduous task, it’s practically impossible. There is little point in trying.

We may very well sign Luis Suarez. My initial disdain for the idea is slowly being tempered by my desire to see someone, anyone, holding a shirt next to Arsene on the official website. Until we can Tweet that picture, we can’t know anything. We can debate, speculate, hope and argue, but we can’t know.

I thought I’d finish with a bit of a story. It’s a good one, so bare with me.

Last night I was driving home from the centre of Bristol (No – I wasn’t doing anything nefarious).  Whilst in the car, I’m exactly the type of narcissistic sod who likes to listen to his own voice, and I was playing my appearance on the ‘A Bergkamp Wonderland’ podcast. Unbeknown to me, my glorious Rover was minus a functioning back light.

To cut things short, the faulty light attracted the attention of the Police. As it turns out, one of them was a fan of the show, and very impressed to hear I’d been a guest on it. I’d like to think the simple warning I received was down to that.

Just as well he’d not heard the episode I was on…

The comments are below. I hope you’ll use ‘em to pour your little hearts out. I’m still confident of a successful window. Are you? Let me know.

As always; thanks for reading, you beautiful bastards.


Filed under News

“Wenger out! Wenger out! WENGER OUT!!” Okay…. That’s constructive.

“Lets protest!”

Morning all.

I would appear there’s a lot of animosity floating about at the present time. Whilst it’s understandable to feel a degree of frustration with the way transfers are being conducted at Arsenal – God knows I do – calling for the manager to step down 2 weeks before the season starts is ludicrous.

Sacking Arsene won’t happen. He will leave Arsenal when the time is right for him to do so, and the decision will be his. No amount of protesting will force the Board’s hand, and then only thing such acts will accomplish will be an element of disharmony.

I often think supporters groups fail to gauge the negative effects their protests have. Whilst I wouldn’t think to cast aspersions over anyone who feels the need to be heard  - In fact, I admire such people greatly – there has to come a time where they realise it’s counter productive.

By all means, vent frustrations towards the Board, as they deserve it 100%. But Arsene Wenger, unless undeniably culpable of anything that drastically and negatively effects Arsenal, doesn’t warrant to be questioned with such veracity.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m no AKB.  I’m no Wenger apologist and you won’t hear me defending each,  every and anything he does. He has made mistakes, and is perhaps still in the same mentality of 10 years ago.

But to call for his head now is absurd. The season starts in 2 weeks. Sacking a manager now would do far greater damage than good. He may yet to invest in the team, but there is still plenty of time for him to do so.

In short; there’s no point moaning until we have something to moan about. If we get to September 2nd without any notable additions, then we certainly will have.

That’s all for today, folks. Just a quick post to get down what’s tumbling about my head. I’ve more pressing concerns to deal with, so please feel free to carry on the discussion in the comments between yourselves.

Lastly, a quick reminder to donate to a wonderful cause and be entered into a draw to win the new Arsenal shirt. If everyone who reads this post donates even £1, we’ll have all contributed towards making a sick little boy’s life a bit easier. Some things, folks, are far more important than football.

Donate here.

As always; thanks for reading, you beautiful bastards.


Filed under Arsenal