102 Comments

Hi, I’m Arsene and I Kill People

dex

Backlash.

That’s what we need today. A backlash against the boo boys and bad luck and a disappointing first half of the Bayern tie. We need a victim, a sacrificial offering to the football Gods. We need them gagged and bound and prostrate on the alter of The Emirates. I don’t know if you’ve ever seen the programme Dexter, but the hero is a deranged serial killer for whom you can’t help feeling a certain bizarre sympathy. His favourite thing is anaesthetising a bad guy (or gal – he’s an equal opportunities sociopath) then fixing him (or her) to a table with acres of clingfilm. When the victim regains consciousness Dexter selects one from a glittering array of surgically sharp bladed weapons and despatches him (or her) with care, brutal precision and evident relish. That’s how I want Arsenal and Villa to look this afternoon.
Anaesthetise them with the kind of scintillating attacking play we saw against, say West Ham, or in the second half against Liverpool, literally have them punch drunk, reeling and chasing shadows and then when they are reduced to prone, helpless prey deliver a series of viscous and yet beautifully crafted killer blows.
We all know the team have it in them. We know it because we’ve seen it, plenty of times. I’m watching highlights of some of our matches from this season and we have played some seriously joyous football, we really have. Even before the season started we saw some breathtaking stuff against FC Cologne. At just after 23 and a half minutes into the game a good interception by Gibbs led to a counter of such sure footed, quick passing that it was a travesty when Giroud’s curling shot was saved at the end of it. Personally I’d have given the keeper a yellow at the very least for Deliberate Ruination Of A Lovely Move. If it isn’t actually in the rule book then it bloody well ought to be.
Then when Southampton visited in September they ended up looking like one of those trailer parks after a tropical storm has landed. The quick thinking and freedom with which we moved the ball around, the intricate passes in and about their goal area and the merciless way we finished left their defence in tatters. They weren’t the only side to end up being designated a state of emergency after a visit from Hurricane Arsenal this season. Coventry, West Ham, Spurs, Reading and Newcastle have all been declared a disaster area after meeting our boys on the wrong day and in the wrong mood. When it’s worked for us this season it has worked to devastating effect.
Now I know and you know that there have been moments where things have gone less well. Sometimes we’ve been the architect of our own undoing, and even in the games where the opposition have been shrink wrapped on the table staring in wide eyed astonished terror at the shining blade they’ve somehow managed to sneak a goal or three. Doesn’t matter when you bag six or seven but as Liverpool proved it matters when you only match their two. But what is the point in dwelling on the negatives? It won’t cheer us up, it won’t send us into the match filled with optimism and hope and so what possible good would it do anyone beyond a criminally deranged masochistic depressive who has deliberately stopped taking his meds? Frankly, fuck that for a game of soldiers. I’d much rather watch and rewatch the opening one minute and thirty one seconds of the second half of the West Ham game at the Emirates:
Whistle.
Jack to Santi back to Tommy V. Tommy V wide to Bac who slips it first time down the line to Theo. He wriggles and squirms, takes three or four feather light flickering touches then passes to Giroud who plays the most sublime pass across his body, one touch, infield to Santi as Jack and Theo take off like greyhounds one inside the other out wide. Santi needs no touch to control Giroud’s perfectly weighted ball but rather sweeps it forward down the inside right channel for Theo to race onto. Twenty five seconds have elapsed when Theo sends the perfect cross into Jack’s flight path and only an heroic intervention from Tomkins who very nearly scores an own goal prevents us from taking the lead.
From the corner, taken short, Jack loops a high cross over their area and they head it clear. Gibbs picks up the knock-down and at this moment we still have eight players in and around their area. Gibbs plays a one two with his Captain then puts over a cross which is headed clear, Ramsay on the edge of the area, performs some ball juggling acrobatics off his chest and then delivers what looks like a contortionists pass with the outside of his right boot. It loops perfectly into Santi’s path and he Lukas and Gibbs tie a cats cradle through and around the visitor’s defence who just manage to hack it clear for another corner. One minute seventeen seconds gone.
Theo’s corner, from our left this time is driven to the near post where Per is waiting for his trademark flick on. Except he isn’t there. For some reason he abandoned his position peeling away back towards the penalty spot. And as we looked on bewildered Olivier Giroud appears from nowhere to redirect the ball inside the near post with a touch so exquisite, so skilful that the extraordinary difficulty of playing such a shot is not immediately apparent. One minute and thirty seconds gone and West Ham who had managed only four desperate touches of the ball were looking into the eyes of a remorseless killing machine, and could barely twitch in response.

goal
That is what I’m hoping to see against Villa. When all the countless hours of work that Arsene and his coaching staff put in with the players pays off, when the beautiful engine he has assembled from so many diverse components of world football purrs into life then growls and then roars. That ninety seconds of play is what I see in my mind’s eye when someone tells me this team are past it, not good enough, didn’t cost enough, that Steve Bould can’t coach and Arsene can’t manage. Because believe me that wasn’t a fluke, that was what they work towards every day and that is what they can deliver. With confidence and consistency those special passages of play will become too numerous to separate in our memories. The deft touches, the assurance that a pass into space or made fast under pressure will find a team mate ready to nudge it around his marker or already be running onto the expected return, these things are all there, sometimes bubbling frustratingly close to and yet under the surface but ready to be unleashed in a venomous backlash.
Let it be today, please Arsene, let it be today.

About steww

bass guitar, making mistakes, buggering on regardless.

102 comments on “Hi, I’m Arsene and I Kill People

  1. Not quite the killing we hoped for, but a welcome morale boosting win and more importantly, 3 vital points to keep us witih touching distance of 4th place.

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  2. How Anicoll and Harry Flowers can continue arguing with twats who have no credentials to criticize someone with 30 years experience coaching at the top, top level is beyond me. Horses for courses I guess.

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  3. Stop reading it Shotta,
    I did ,and it cheered me up no end

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  4. YEAH PASSENAL… A LOSS FOR TOTTS TOMORROW OR EVEN A DRAW… AND A WIN OF THE DERBY NEXT WEEK FOR US… RIGHT BACK IN 4TH, ON OUR WAY TO 3RD AND WHO KNOWS? MAYBE 2ND.

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  5. also, watford my new 2nd team are doing the business. happy for zola and almunia

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  6. George @ 6:28 pm – Agreed. The blogger does some good work but the twats have taken over. Fortunately, the owner and the board have a successful club to run and have no time for emotional nonsense.

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  7. Team Spirit – Thanks for keeping us posted about Watford. At the rate they are going Almunia may be back in the Prem next year. The twats said he would never be a keeper in a decent club. Shows you how much they know.

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  8. Just as I thought a couple of months ago. 2nd place is definitely
    Doable. Congrats to AW AND THE LADS. should do wonders for the
    Moral of the fans. We hope for a tie game tomorrow.
    HERE WE COME. READY OR NOT .ROBERTO. Run and hide..

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  9. Anicoll5 – sincere apologies for missing you in the pub; I honestly thought I’d posted on PA exactly where in the pub we (George & I) were meeting – by front doors on the right, dead easy to spot, but that was a message that went be email. My bad I’m afraid; been a long week. Actually got there at 1pm and met George at 1.30, bang on time. We were watching out for you but assumed you hadn’t made it.

    Great to meet George anyway, will do it again sometime.

    The game itself was hard work; Villa’s paucity of ambition a walking advert for the abandonment of the award of a point for a goal-less draw. Arsenal, alongside everyone else, struggle to break into parked buses. I do wish we could get to the byline and cut back a cross into the penalty area more often. When we manage it there is invariably chaos and we certainly have the pace to do this to great effect.

    I thought Giroud was terrific today, so much great link-up play and Jack and Santi in particular were on fire. Not aware of anyone having a particularly bad day. Crowd not too bad without being great – their (our) least finest moment was the booing of Gervino’s name when revealed as sub …

    Overall a well deserved three points in my opinion, the lads never stopped working all game. Great to see a meaningful celebration for the goals, too.

    Pleased to see the Toffes go down; just leaves a Spuds foul-up to complete a pretty decent weekend.

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  10. Anicoll5 – I did keep an eye on Twitter & PA for a message from you; but I put my phone away when George turned up at 1.30 pm; just noticed your “stood up” post at 1.35 pm – drat!

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  11. So what do we want for tomorrow? A victory for City? Leaves us just two points behind the Chavs. On the other hand, if City lose, it’s 6 points to 2nd. Maybe a draw would be the best result?

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  12. I want them to have a big handbags at dawn in the middle of the park with loads of players sent off…ensuing lengthy bans and points deducted.

    Failing that, a draw.

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  13. Owt bar a Chav win

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  14. The knobs online have been saying we barely won today but the stats at EPLlndex http://tiny.cc/ia6ysw shows we were dominant in every category except scoring goals. 64% v 36% possession, 535 v 237 accurate passes, 19 v 7 chances. If Walcott and Giroud had better games easy 4-0. Walcott only had 14% accurate crosses of 14 attempted Someone tell Paul Lambert they deserved f*ck all with their negative tactics.

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  15. Why are Oxo, Kos & Gervinho not getting excited for our winning goal?

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  16. I wouldn’t read too much into it Dups. Maybe it was so cold they’s just frozen up, more likely delayed reaction or something. Snaps don’t always tell the whole story.

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  17. I thought Giroud was good too, Andrew. I think he should start in the second leg against Bayern.

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  18. You’re probably right Harry. I just like to see a little more passion I suppose.

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  19. Yeah it looks a bit odd Dups, I have to admit. It’s now being used by cretins to prove a point though, so I’m trying not to read too much into what is only one snap after all.

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  20. Yeah, I guess two seconds later and we would see them all having a happy face on. Wenger isn’t exactly celebrating right away, either (fists clenched, but still a sceptical look, like he is expecting the goal to be written off or something). As for Jenks, well, he is one of us, a real fan, Gooner through and through, so that he is first to celebrate and with that kind of enthusiasm is to be expected.

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  21. I might have mentioned it on the other blog, but Jenkinson is my favourite player from this current crop. I do have a long-standing man crush on Rosicky,dating back to when he was still weaving his magic for Dortmund, but Jenkinson takes the cake, simply for not only being a good right back, but also being a fan who is living the dream. I think every single one of us, who might have gone out and played a bit of non-league or Sunday league was at one point or another hoping that he somehow gets “discovered” and ends up playing for Arsenal. For Jenks, that has happened, and I hope that he keeps improving so that he can stay with us forever.

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  22. “Crowd not too bad without being great – their (our) least finest moment was the booing of Gervino’s name when revealed as sub …”

    I thought the crowd wasn’t too bad either – didn’t hear any booing where I was in the North Bank – the crowd even tried to get the ‘we’re the North Bank’ chant going a couple of times. I was grateful for the early goal so that the 8th minute protest never got off the ground. I heard a couple of people around me talking about it, not in a positive way either, so I’m not sure who would have been joining in with that nonsense!

    The handbrake was well and truely on today – lack of confidence was evidently holding them back, but hopefully today’s result will mark the start of better things

    “Why are Oxo, Kos & Gervinho not getting excited for our winning goal?”

    It was damn cold out there today – and they look frozen on that bench!

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  23. Well done the lads, it must have been tough after the week they’ve had

    Aresenal win, Everton Lose, RVP injured (wicked I know). A Chamakh hat trick from the bench would cap the weekend

    Oh wait a minute Chelsea and City can kick lumps out of each other

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  24. So it was you at the bottom of the steps peering into your phone when I arrived AA ! 🙂

    No problems with the 100% commitment from every player today – very pleased with Jenks and he was unlucky to go off – Giroud worked his arse off

    Watching it on Football First now we look better than my seat in 104

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  25. And yes Szcz – that was worse on TV

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  26. “And yes Szcz – that was worse on TV”

    I know! What the hell was he thinking?

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  27. I shall put it down to Szcz not having anything to do since half time before the Weimann shot

    He is buying Santi dinner tonight

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  28. Oh my boys, I’m so proud of you. You got the job done. Loved the way they responded after Villa equalised literally the first time they got out of their half in the second period. Another day, another hero. Thanks Santi and well done. Good luck West Ham and City tomorrow. Don’t mind if City/Chelski is a draw.

    And big hello to you, too, Mr Goonerkam. A pleasure to see you posting.

    steww that was a really funny post today.

    What did Mancini say about Arsene? Anyone got a link?

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  29. we need goonerwife

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  30. “What did Mancini say about Arsene? Anyone got a link?”

    I was wondering the same thing

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  31. ah yes, goonerwife… come in, goonerwife, the mothership is calling you home.

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  32. Popped into the Pub too but slight flaw in the plan was I had absolutely no clue who I was looking for. oops, had beer tho’ so all not lost.

    As has been said above, next time.

    Happy enough with the game today.

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  33. Opps forgot to change name on Last post re popping into pub. Meanwhil link re what Mancini said… assume this is the one to which folk refer above

    http://metro.co.uk/2013/02/22/roberto-mancini-mocks-arsene-wengers-arsenal-im-different-i-want-to-win-3510504/

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  34. Yup, Anicoll5; peering into my phone, ironically seeing if you’d try to get in touch via Twitter/PA!!!

    Steve_I – change name to (or from) what??

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  35. Mancini, sad little man. Thanks, steve…I think!

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  36. And JvC “bizarre hip injury after falling down a hole”. ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha.

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  37. Is it serious Fun gunner?

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  38. @ Passenal
    One can only hope so. Or ideally, not that serious, but mysterious, lingering and unresponsive to treatment.

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  39. How did he come to fall in a hole?

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  40. He lives in a hole like all nasty creepy crawlies.

    Actually it was a hole for the legs of a BBC camera, so thanks for that, BBC.

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  41. Probably won’t be long-term though. I expect Fergie won’t hesitate to use any underhand means available to get his one man band back up and running!

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  42. Where does the BBC gets its match statistics. According to their match report possession was 52% – 48%. Complete and utter nonsense. EPL index reports 64% – 36% which is closer to the truth, give or take a 2-4% margin of error. Villa gave up all pretense at retaining possession in the 2nd half, sitting deep and relying entirely on breakaways and counter-attacks. This is not the 1st time I have seen this misleading data on BBC. What is their motivation? To pretend games are closer than they appear. Whatever the reason it is totally misleading and another stain on their supposed “objectivity.”

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  43. They had Stoke with 55% against us a home. The hardly saw the ball.

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  44. ANDREW changed name from iwasyk which is name that I had registered from long ago for the software I think. It auto did it or somesuch

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  45. George – I remember those stats by the Beeb for Stoke, who completely gave up the idea of ball retention in the 2nd half of their game with us. What is their agenda? Today’s cooked up stats supports their report that the game was close. Nonsense. If the game was all about possession (boxing comes to mind) we would have won every round handily plus two knockdowns. Then they had the anti-Arsene idiots using their skewed data to attack Wenger in the Comments section. The Beeb are becoming a living testament to Mark Twain’s observation of the use of Lies, Damn Lies and Statistics.

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  46. Steve – gotcha (I think); still can’t see a previous post referring to the pub though and just wondering how many more people Georgaki and I managed to stand up!!

    I blame George for not having a beer on the coldest afternoon of the year.

    Confusing.

    Shotta/PG – I feel a complaint to the BBC coming on …

    Stats, presented as ‘fact’, clearly at odds with the reality as confirmed by independent bodies/our own eyes, combined with a relentlessly negative outlook on the show when discussing the club even following a win for the club.

    At best, misleading; at worst leaving the BBC at risk of accusations of bias. Combine that with the disrespect shown to Arsene Wenger by the show’s lead presenter following the Arsenal trip to Stoke last year – which was the subject of a complaint – and you have the appearance of a pattern of irregular reporting inconsistent with the usual high standards of the BBC.

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  47. GEORGE &. SHOTTA
    unfortunately the BBC has a bad reputation all around the world. Take their reportage with a grain of salt. Always.
    That goes for their sport news also. Did you read mc faultys last blog on AW and why he must leave??
    made my blood boil. He is no journalists. An a–hole is more like it.
    speaking of holes hopefully rvp will find many more to fall into.
    the 6′ deep variety..
    hilarious got he came out the hole looking at his bumm. Hope the injury
    sidelines the prick a few games.
    FUN GUNNER hope you’re Lucky finding goonerewife and Maria too.
    infact all true gooners world wide. Glory hunting ingrates need not apply….. Moaning closest mancs and spuds could do well to stay where they are.
    Have a great rest of the weekend everyone…..

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  48. Oh
    Spuds to lose outright and chelski to draw against shitty.
    Perfect week…

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  49. As I had feared(hoped).
    Robin one prick has indeed suffered a season ending injury.
    X-ray revealing a dislocated tushy butt. And severely bruised ego to his dumbass
    Our prayers with him for recovery in 2666 ,,

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  50. Goonerkam – MacFaulty is not even an ass-hole. He is a big pile inside an ass-hole. Rednose’s asshole.

    Sad to say, but the media, officials and Arsenal’s idiotic fans are killing my interest in football.

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