Posts Tagged ‘Tottenham Hotspur’

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Celebratory pottery smashing? You betcha!

May 8, 2011

First and foremost, Happy St Totteringham’s Day!

Virtual and real champagne corks are popping, laughs are being shared, 4th (or better) place trophy is once again secured and it’s not like we are going to be all mature about it, if all that comes with the additional buzz of Schadenfreude at the expense of that lot from the wrong end of Seven Sisters Road, is it? Hopefully, all that mouthing off has now been curbed until at least mid summer, when we will once again hear about how we will be upstaged by that North London superpower with their new shirt sponsor. Up yours, Sp*ds!

All the tribalism stuff aside, I would like to take this occasion to wish their Welshman a speedy recovery from the injury of yet unknown extent inflicted upon him by a rash tackle committed by Blackpool’s bad boy Charlie Adam who is apparently second in the bookings league and fourth in the fouling charts this season. Taking today’s game into the consideration, these wishes could not be any more timely: when our last week’s hero, Aaron Ramsey got his leg broken by another ‘honest lad without a bad bone in his body’ the reactions from the neighbouring camp were mostly sympathetic, some were anything but, however, we are a classy outfit and we should rise above the latter to reciprocate the former. Get well soon, monkey boy!

Speaking of primates, we have a particularly nasty lot to negotiate today and I don’t think there is any need to remind anyone what happened last time we travelled to Britannia Stadium, is there? I had my say on the subject last year and I don’t think there is much of a need for me to repeat myself. It’s a real shame that Stoke are currently on 43 points and there is no way for them to get relegated, as since Allardyce was sent on the dole where he rightfully belongs, they are about the last team in this league playing clueless neanderthal football with their players being the team sports’ answer to the missing link in Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution: stuck somewhere in the middle, being too ‘tough’ for the civilised football league and too wimpy to play rugby. We should consider ourselves lucky that they happen to play in the FA Cup final next weekend, as they would probably kick the living shit out of us otherwise, still, a lot will depend on how much they will be allowed by the man in black, Mr Mark Halsey, as they are sure to give their usual ‘tactics’ a try. An early booking or two should cool a few heads there!

Team photo. Say cheese, Ryan!

After the last weekend’s win over Yoonited where Ramsey scored the only goal of the game, Our Glorious Leader seems to think that striking the iron while it’s hot is the way forward and that it will do him a world of good to return to the scene of the crime at the earliest opportunity. For once, you will not find me disagreeing him and as far as I am concerned, it’s actually good to see AW not cotton-wooling a player on this occasion – here is to hoping that this trend will now continue and be applied to each and every ‘member of staff’ at the long last! Make no mistake, Rambo is in for a real baptism of fire today, as if the stuff I read on Tw*tter over the last few days is anything to go by, their fans don’t seem to have enough decency to appreciate a top player returning from career-threatening injury inflicted by one of their own and are willing to support this clogger who is due to play his 150th game for them by booing our man instead. What a classy bunch they are, you really could not make it up.

Both teams have a few players missing, I think we can be pretty happy with their striker, Ricardo Fuller being out, as he seems to have a knack for scoring against us. If you are to believe Orbinho like I do, he managed to put four goals past our goalkeepers in as many outings, therefore him being out of the picture can only be a good thing. As far as our first choice personnel goes, we have Fabregas  and Nasri definitely out with Djourou and Clichy said to be facing late fitness tests, which means that we may see Gibbs and Squillaci in the back four, as I don’t think AW will risk playing recently recovered Vermaelen in today’s game. There are some rumours and conspiracy theories doing rounds about a few of these players being out of the picture, but let us focus on two games we are about to witness today and leave that stuff for the post which will go up in the near future. I know I have promised to touch on that subject and I am a man of my word, you better be ready for theories mad enough to make Mel Gibson’s Jerry Fletcher blush and eat his tin foil hat!

I would not expect any other unusual inclusions or players being rested as the idea is to maintain our good record against them and take all three points ahead of the two teams above us in the table meeting just after we finish our business with them Potters. I would not mind a whole lot if the later game was to end up with a mass brawl, flurry of red cards and point deductions, failing that, with a draw or a Chelsea win. Pretty please, St Totteringham? I was a good boy the whole season, you know? Amen.

Come on you rip roaring Reds!

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A favour for a favour. Yoonited preview.

May 1, 2011

Howdy Gooners! Is there a game on today?

Following Chavs’ lucky win against the Totts, it has to be said that the things are getting quite interesting at the top of the table: a win today will see us just six points off the top, three points off second placed Chelsea and pretty much guarantee our top four spot, given the Sp*ds pathetic goal difference of +7 compared to our +31. Just to illustrate, if you take today’s game out of the equation, they would need to win their remaining games by at least four goal margin with us suffering three defeats of the same proportions just to get level on points and goal difference to have a chance of beating us to the top four finish.

But hey, let’s not get ahead of ourselves, shall we? We have quite a game to play today before the above calculation can be applied and it really does not get much harder than that. The timing is also less than perfect: with us being unable to buy a win whether we play good or not and them hitting the rich vein of form as well as being well motivated to keep the daylight between them and Chavs to get closer to clinching their record-breaking 19th league title, the odds are well stacked up against us and our win would make a few betting people who choose to wager using their hearts rather than heads a good few bob richer. I am not a betting man, but just a quick look at a random comparison site tells a bit of a story: Arsenal 13/8,  ManYoo 2, draw 12/5 (apparently the best deals at the moment of writing). Given that the betting companies are plentiful and don’t show any signs of going out of business they must be doing something right, wouldn’t you agree? Still, if it was all that simple and predictable we would just check the odds on offer and not bother watching the games!

The title of today’s article is not much of a mystery for these who have read my Monday’s post. For those who have not, a brief explanation: the tone of today’s post would be a whole lot different if it was not for the Chelsea’s sudden rise, as it would be all about watching-from-behind-the-sofa panic stations as Yoonited would try to win the league at our place to be the first team to achieve that at The New Home of Football. Seriously, this does not even bear thinking about and since we are a classy outfit, it is only polite to return the favour by stuffing the Mancs, however unlikely it may sound. ABU!

Our supersub, (Red) Devil Slayer. Just in case.

Onto the game itself: given our recent form, OGL faces the gargantuan task of lifting the team in order for them to stand up to Yoonited and make it look respectable, preferably get a respectable result, maybe even an unlikely win. While doing the legwork for this post, I thought of including some rousing battle speech as the motto. Whilst I could not really find anything that was not stupidly cheesy and over the top, I have found this instead:

‘Today we are gathered here to battle. Regrettable, isn’t it, but sometimes, you know, life is like that. You have to do something you don’t want to do, just because someone is telling you to do it. I don’t want to be here myself, but my mother told me that I’d better make it a reasonable show of it all, so here we go then’

The above quote is an ‘Easter egg’  from a strategy game. Come to think of it, it’s funny because it’s true: I think it’s safe to say that both the players and the manager would rather be somewhere else, but sometimes life is like that. Win, lose or draw, they will need to go through the 90 or so minutes of play in front of their own increasingly disappointed and expectant crowd and then be judged upon their performance and result. Whilst I am prepared to risk saying that the fans may appreciate the genuine tooth and nail effort whatever the final score, or at least if it is respectable, I don’t even want to begin to think what may happen if we are served the same turd sandwich we had to chew on more than once already this season. The Roman Colosseum could accommodate fifty thousand spectators and there were no ‘home’ and ‘away’ sections, just a bunch of folk who could decide whether you lived or died, depending on how well you did. Obviously, we are more civilised than letting in the hungry lions on the pitch these days, but you get my drift, don’t you?

All I can ask for is so that the team would fight them on the beaches, on the landing grounds, in the fields and in the streets… Er, scratch that, I reckon fighting them on the pitch will do! And I am asking the people lucky enough to be inside the ground to do their bit for the full 90 minutes and give the team all the support you possibly can. If not for their sake, then just for the sake of your clear conscience, so that you could say that you gave them an honest chance. Sure, if they don’t give their all, then by any means boo them off the pitch with all your might, but not before the final whistle. Don’t make it hostile for your own, make it so for the visitors, no need to be hospitable here…

Let them feel that they are in hell and it’s us who are the devils!

Come on you Gunners!

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Saturday guff.

April 30, 2011

‘On a lazy Saturday morning when you’re lying in bed, drifting in and out of sleep, there is a space where fantasy and reality become one. Are you awake, or are you dreaming? You see people and things; some are familiar; some are strange. You talk, you feel, but you move without walking; you fly without wings. Your mind and your body exist, but on separate planes. Time stands still. For me, this is the feeling I have when ideas come.’

Lynn Johnston

The author of the above quote is a Canadian cartoonist behind the For Better or for Worse cartoon that ran for the impressive 30 years. It has to be said that one can only envy this kind of consequence and wish for the same. Quite frankly, I am really struggling to think about something interesting to write about, so I guess I will do a bit of a press and blog run to see what the others have come up with on the lazy bank holiday weekend Saturday.

Thinking that it may be the best idea to get the worst out of the way first, I have gone onto the website of a popular red top to see that Alchy is already thinking of his team being crowned champions in a week after they beat us and Chelsea. If you needed any more encouragement to cheer on the latter today, look no further – say what you want, but since we have no chance in hell to win the thing (despite of what LeGrove’s genius chief statistician RayGooner has managed to come up with – see here), I would absolutely love for them to trump the Jocko’s lot. Oh well, that will teach me not to touch the tabloids with a barge pole, eh?

Lazy? Moi?

Bang, there goes my press overview! Having done a quick screening of the other blogs I read, it seems like the others had the same idea, so instead of being repetitive, I will just quickly summarise what they had to say. LeGrove’s Pedro talks about the images of the new kit which is to be introduced next season to celebrate the club’s 125th birthday. Has to be said that it does not differ from this season’s one a whole lot and I am not too sure whether I like the idea of the away kit being white with the shorts presumably coming in navy, since we had the redcurrant ones this season. You know what team it resembles, don’t you? We had the white third kit last season and I can’t think of a single good game when we donned it. If you look like Sp*ds, you play like Sp*ds, let’s hope for our sake that it’s not some kind of curse. Pedro also mentions the Guardian’s interview with Djourou, which  makes  interesting reading, you can have a look here.

ACLF’s Yogi Warrior also wrote a piece on the latter subject, although he chose it to be the core subject of his today’s post. The slant is obviously a little different, but that is the beauty of the Gooner blogosphere, you can find something to suit your personal stance whether you are the of ever-the-optimistic lot (commonly referred to as AKB) or one of the realists, who the former like to think of as DooM™ raiders. YW also touches on the subject of the team captaincy, following the words from OGL about how the armband burdened our favourite Spaniard at such a young age. Dear Arsene, I hate to say that but we told you so the very moment he was given the footballing equivalent of Tolkien’s ring to bear. If this is your token time to figure out the bleeding obvious, well…

Just to continue with the chain of thought in the same manner, it’s time to mention Arseblog’s today’s post saying a bit more of the issue YW just slightly touched – funny how all this falls into place if you keep the correct order, one blogger gives you a little teaser at the end of his post  just for another to make it the main point of the article. Arseblogger is his usual boilky self, but hey, it’s Saturday peeps! His article also mentions the interview with Verminator who claims to be ready for the first team action. Thomas, we love you, but I say you may want to sit this one out and come back stronger next season, hopefully with another shiny new monster of a centreback to partner you. We hardly have anything to play for, so I don’t think there is any need to take unnecessary risks.

Last, but certainly not least: just to wrap things up, let me mention today’s tongue-in-cheek post by RockyLives you can read on the ArsenalArsenal site. The author is mocking the idea of the march due to take place before the Villa game in a few weeks, it’s pretty well written and funny in a way, but you know my take on the subject, don’t you? I don’t think it’s clever to dismiss the points behind the WHOAG’s initiative without giving them a thought. But hey, let’s hope these humorous pieces will go some way towards releasing the tension amongst those who want to oppose the peaceful demo in the less-than-peaceful manner.

Anyway, thank you for reading this belated post and let’s hope the blue scum will give the lilywhite scum a good hiding!

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The rant? Nah…

April 29, 2011

I know I promised one, but why would I do such a thing? It’s Friday, the work week was short, another long weekend has just begun, most people are happy to see the Royal Wedding and coming out today spitting feathers about things that can hardly be changed at this point in time and getting all emotional would be just, well, out of place and probably a bit rude as well. Her Maj is a Gooner, hence it’s like a family wedding and I could never forgive myself if I was to stink out the place or even contribute towards anybody’s mood being less than jolly on the big family occasion. Dear Wills and Kate, all the best!

Worry not, I will keep the fuse lit and it’s only up to the players if it ignites the fireworks of praise or a salvo of criticism at the beginning of the next week, even though all we have left to play for is to deliver the very belated St Totteringham’s Day from the evil Twitchy Grinch. It’s no laughing matter, theoretically we may still miss out on that little joy as well! Needless to say, I will be watching the game tomorrow with great interest and given that like every Arsenal fan worth his salt I only support two clubs (us and whoever plays Sp*ds), I will be a Chav for a day. I will stop short of saying something to the tune of blue being the new red tomorrow, but only just. Call me a blasphemer, but even Churchill once said that he would ally with the horned one himself to defeat that dude with a funny ‘tache, no? Enemy of my enemy, end justifying the means and all that.

Another reason why I’ve decided against letting Our Glorious Leader as well as the underperforming team have both barrels is simply that following the announcement of the protest march due to take place before the Villa game, we have seen enough aggro in the Arsenal blogosphere this week as it is. What saddened me was that there seem to be numbers of people who are prepared to act as praetorians of the ancien régime and how all this is going to end up is anybody’s guess. I mean, what exactly is wrong with a peaceful march? And I wonder how many people lining up to ‘defend the club’ against their own have actually read what the dissidents’ beef is before hitting out at the supposed ‘infidels’? Whilst I am not necessarily fully supporting ALL the points they are raising, they have a few valid ones and they are worth at least listening to without dismissing them outright as ‘silly’ PHW-stylee. Some of you may recall that I am not exactly a fan of picket and demo style protests myself, but if there are people who think that it is a valid form of ‘collective expression’, no one should berate them or stop them from doing their thing. You think it’s silly? Let them make complete tits out of themselves then! A few hundred strong march is not enough to harm the colossus of a club that is Arsenal, surely? I say let them through without causing them any grief, all they want is to be heard by the rest of the family, not too much to ask, is it?

Someone said to me ‘To you football is a matter of life or death!’ and I said ‘Listen, it’s more important than that’.

Bill Shankly

Ironically, both the ‘dissidents’ and the ‘praetorians’ are willing to do their bit simply because they all agree with the above quote. Why else would the former march on the stadium to make the ‘elders’ listen and why do you the latter are so much up in arms at the very thought of anyone daring to contest the status quo? Make no mistake, they are all doing it out of their love for the club, the only difference between them is their respective concepts of what the best way forward for the AFC is. This kind of Armageddon of views will either prove be the catalyst for change or will leave the fanbase divided into the equivalents of Republicans and Democrats, which will sadly mark the end of the fans’  influence, however minimal it may be. One can’t win if there is no harmony, there is even some Latin phrase that says something to that effect, anyone remembers what it is? Once the fanbase is irrevocably and irreparably split, we may as well introduce another known Latin slogan as the club’s motto: Divide et impera.

Just to wrap things up, watch this short video, which should remind you not to take yourself, your next man or OGL too seriously:

Q: Can you spot a fellow Gooner in this one?

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Winner, winner, chicken dinner. Not!

April 21, 2011

So, here I am, having just watched the best damn derby game for some time, trying to write something meaningful to begin the post with a bang, but quite frankly, I am lost for words. They say it is better to sleep on it and all that, but I just don’t think it will make the pain of squandering the lead once more to lose another two points just like a few days ago go away. As much as I could just about live with the result against Liverpool, this one made my blood boil: ‘3:1 and you fucked it up’ echoed around the SHL and you will certainly not find me disagreeing with that.

Just to be fair, let’s get the good bits out of the way first: I believe the team as a whole deserves praise for their response after the Sunday fiasco, coming to the ultimately hostile place and not cracking after our initial lead lasted only two minutes, but adding another peach of a goal just five minutes later. Another good thing was that we just kept on going and looked impressive throughout the first 40 minutes, which eventually paid off when Robin scored the third.

This is where the praise for the team as a unit ends, and the only good words I have from that moment onwards go to our young goalkeeper. Some people may say he could have reacted better when facing their player rather than conceding the penalty which set the score at 3:3, I say put him behind a defence that will not leave him ridiculously exposed like that or at least under a manager who knows how to defend a lead and watch him go. Sure, I may be a bit biased, given that he is my countryman and namesake, but come on, results of the MOTM poll on Pravda.com tell me that I may just be right. Like it or not, given what we saw in the second half, he is the sole reason why we have managed to get away from the SHL with a point and kept our pride more or less intact by not allowing these unsavoury characters from down the road to do the first league double over us in Wenger’s tenure. Another fine performance from the young goalie in a big game and as far as I am concerned, buying a ‘top’ player for ridiculous money to be our next no.1 will be just another sign of shocking management as the sums we are talking about here are much better spent on improvements in other positions to represent much better value for money.

Take a bow, son!

Which brings me to that less pleasant part. Since we are now officially done with the due praise, time for a short analysis of what went wrong: given the few results I really can’t be bothered to mention ad nauseam, I think it’s a foregone conclusion that we can’t defend a lead to save our lives. Last night’s game was pretty much the epitome of that, as we witnessed us conceding goals just minutes after scoring not once, but twice and the blame must be laid at our players’ door as VdV and Huddlestone were allowed all the time and space in the world to score two good goals. The former was allowed to run with disinterested Diaby (who had another stinker, by the way) jogging after him instead of busting the gut and the latter just stood outside the box waiting for the inevitable rebound to smash the ball low and hard off the post to double their goal tally on the night. As far as the second half is concerned, apart from the RVP’s wrongly disallowed goal and Szczesny’s heroics, the less is said, the better.

I mean, will this team and manager EVER learn? Don’t know about you, but I am yet to see any evidence to convince me that it is the case. I could add something about Our Glorious Leader’s gut-wrenching post match interview, but I think you know what he said and what my opinion on the subject is, so I guess I will spare my keyboard all that furious tapping. Come to think of it, I will actually touch one subject, which is the ’15 unbeaten game run’ nonsense: dear Arsene, I hasten to point out that it is actually theoretically possible to go the whole season unbeaten and get relegated with 38 points to your name. We are now in the third and the way the things are going I would not even put the unthinkable past this lot. Now look at our fixture list between now and May 22nd and take the rollercoaster of a season thus far into the account, can you really say, hand on heart, that you are absolutely positive that we are certain to qualify to play in the CL?

You gotta laugh, otherwise you will cry…

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Pride to be restored. Blitz the Yids or die trying.

April 20, 2011

pride /prīd/

  1. A sense of one’s own proper dignity or value; self-respect.
  2. Pleasure or satisfaction taken in an achievement, possession, or association

Having been served the gruel throughout the 90 minutes on Sunday and ending up with the late desert in our faces, slapstick comedy style, you could be excused for having little or none of the above ahead of today’s all important clash with our hated rivals who will definitely be up for doing a double over us this season. Forget the win in the early stages of the Carling Cup, the league is the real thing, and despite our chances of winning it being slim to none, I don’t think I can stomach losing another three points at the Shite Hart Lane. You know what I am talking about and so should the players, as far as I am concerned, any player who is paid an arm and a leg is expected to leave an arm and a leg on that shitty pitch if need be, otherwise he should do a decent thing and hand in a transfer request out of that old fashioned and long forgotten thing called respect or at least the fear of the Fraud Squad finally getting their hands on him for impersonating a Premier League footballer.

You know who you are...

Seriously, I should be writing a rousing post, but you know what? Quite frankly, I can’t be arsed, as I don’t think I have a single good thing to say about this team at the moment. Call me a big kid throwing the toys out of his pram and tell me how I have no idea what the meaning of the word ‘support’ is. While you’re at getting all high and mighty, add the customary instruction where to go and who to support instead, do your worst and I’ll just laugh. As you can probably tell, the ‘benefit of the doubt’ credit in my book has now run out, seems like I have yet again been proven right and it’s the team’s turn to convince me, you and everyone else on the damn planet. I don’t want to hear a single more cliché about the derbies making you a man, about this game being set to be more intense than ever, all I want to hear is the deafening silence from the Sp*d sectors with chants and cheers coming from the away end. To put it simply, I am not interested in hearing that the pig’s arse is pork, I want to see the talking being done on the pitch.

After the win at Blackpool, the players have blown the chance of getting the fans firmly on their side by surrendering the tiniest of leads gained against the decimated Liverpool in truly embarrassing fashion. Now the pressure to deliver today is on and we all know that this team doesn’t do pressure, don’t we? You think it’s over the top? I say each to his own, I am yet to be convinced that it’s not necessarily the case, having seen our lot choking  like clockwork whenever there was something to play for, be it the first piece of silverware in a few years, or gaining ground on the title rivals by the way of capitalising on them dropping points. ManYoo getting only a draw yesterday adds that little bit of excitement to the proceedings we are about to witness tonight and I am not quite sure whether to be happy about this or not.  Now, don’t get me wrong: there is nothing I would love more than to be proven wrong on this occasion!

I want to see the performance (not necessarily one of the free-flowing, flying kind) and the result, I want to see these increasingly loudmouth lowlifes from down the road beaten into submission, humiliated and left for dead with any funny ideas of cancelling St Totteringham’s Day this season obliterated from their chicken heads. And before you ask: yes, it is about me. And you. And that fat dude in the hallowed red and white standing next to you in the pub. Not about new contracts for the players who are yet to prove anything or deserve them, not about the manager who seems to be gradually losing the plot or about the new owner. They are all not doing half bad thanks to all of us, it’s time for them to give us something back and that’s pride, the bragging rights and the feeling that you can go to work tomorrow with your head held high rather than to endure the neverending tirade about that mythical shift of power in North London. Shouldn’t be too hard, eh?

Come on you rip roaring new arsehole tearing Reds!

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The North London Derby Mystery

November 21, 2010

Good morning, afternoon, evening, or whatever the time of the day is, wherever you are…

Long time no see, things have been hectic, but this is the Arsenal blog, so I will not be boring anyone with the details, tasty or not – the shocking defeat in the first game I was really looking forward to for quite some time inflicted by the inglorious neighbours brought me out of the blog coma, so here I am…

I don’t think anyone needs to be reminded of what happened yesterday in details, so I shall just skip the match report, leaving that to masochists and people driven by strong sense of duty. Instead, I will focus on the reaction from Our Glorious Leader.

Apparently, it is a mystery for Arsene why we ended up the game empty handed as we were the better side. Once again, someone has an egg on his face after bigging them up and calling them the best group of players he has ever worked with – don’t even get me started on what an insult for the likes of Henry, Pires and Vieira this was!

Well, if you look at the players technique and their technique alone, the above statement uttered by AW in the build up to yesterday’s game may not be necessarily that far from the truth, but this is football, not figure skating and there are no extra points for the number of passes, flicks and the like, the rules are simple, you have to score more than the other lot, and this sometimes involves hard graft and getting your hands dirty. Playing in arguably one of the biggest and best derby games on the planet must involve a lot of heart, desire and passion and feeling what it means for the fans.

Sure, after the first 45 or so minutes, we went to the dressing room 2 goals up and cruising, but we could have and should have been at least one more goal to the good by that time, but we have gone into the celebratory mode after scoring two great goals and once again we started weaving pretty patterns with no urgency whatsoever. The crowd started the ‘ole’ infested jolly and everyone headed for the halftime wee with the ‘mission accomplished’ mindset.  Whilst it may be more or less OK for the fans, the problem starts when it is the team and/or the manager who thinks alike…

First thing the manager should have done in this situation is remind the players that is not over by a long shot, bearing in mind the 4:4 draw/loss in this very fixture and other games when we managed to throw away the lead against arguably even lesser teams due to going into the cruise control mode. I somehow don’t think that the halftime talk went beyond ‘well done garçons, let’s keep this up’. I can only imagine what happened in the other dressing room – ‘Arry is not a quiet type and whatever anyone says about his alleged off the field antics, he is a bit of a motivator and it certainly showed in the second half.

The history of mankind teaches us one thing: the barbarians always win in the end. The empires fell for one and the same combined set of reasons time and time again: decadence and complacency leading to lack of discipline, which left them unable to resist the more determined invading hordes of primitive neighbours, whose villages used to be burnt and pillaged for a laugh by the frontier troops back in the days. I was always of the opinion that the very purpose of teaching history is for the later generations not to repeat the mistakes of the old and that it has even more uses if you are intelligent enough to draw parallels with other situations, as the human nature has not changed one bit since coming off the tree or the sixth day, whatever you choose to believe in. It’s foolish to underestimate the enemy and let them grow, as they soon start getting funny ideas and strength combined with motivation to put one over you is a dangerous mix…

Now, once again, make no mistake about this, this team is packed with great footballers, but it hardly forms a well composed and led unit – once they scored, I knew we were in trouble! As much as Cesc is a great player, he is not a leader type and he did not even cover himself in glory as far as leading by example is concerned, having conceded the most idiotic penalty we will see for a long time. The role of a captain is underestimated by Wenger, but haven’t we coincidentally stopped winning stuff when we got rid of the last real captain we had in Vieira? The first goal they scored came from the lack of discipline – everyone wanted a piece of Spurs and our defence was nowhere near where they should have been with two goals to the good, where was our skipper to tell them that before that happened, dare I ask? Where was the leadership required to prevent the team from falling to pieces afterwards? AW likes to say that it is a team full of leaders, I like to say this kind of approach breeds anarchy…

It has been said that if things come easily to you at young age and you are not taught to work hard, then your attitude may stink occasionally for a bit, until you will learn the hard way that it does not pay and start applying yourself. Real shame the learning process is taking longer than anybody could have expected…

I’ll leave you with that thought…