Arsenal Edging Closer – Time To Enjoy, Time To Be Happy


Time to go home? It’s a bit late to start enjoying yourself now, isn’t it?

When can I start enjoying the season?

Arsenal are top of the Premier League, in the 5th round of the FA cup, and have two fantastic ties in the Champions League to look forward to.

Yet every time I celebrate our position someone tells me:

“We’ve won nothing yet.”

Does that mean I have to wait until a tin cup is won before I can be happy?  Am I to be unhappy if a trophy isn’t won?  That’s a bit like going out for the night and not having a good time until you are in the taxi on the way home, just in case something goes wrong before the night is over.

[Mel – look away now, Ed]

taxi fire

In 1977 the still amateur-status tennis player John McEnroe made the semi-finals of Wimbledon, losing to Jimmy Connors.  Was that a failure? Was he a failure?

Or was it a magnificent sporting achievement?

If winning silverware is the only measure of success and the only time we can celebrate, then how much joy will we miss out on?

It seems to me that the fear of not winning the whole competition is stopping many people enjoying the journey.

If we manage to win the league despite the overwhelming financial disadvantage we are at, then we will be able to shout the houses down, sing , dance, make merry, gloat and taunt until our hearts are content.  However if we don’t it will not mean we failed.  We will still have made some huge forward strides.  We will have fought a gallant fight.

Every game Arsenal wins should be savoured.

Every goal, assist, attempt, all of it, all enjoyed.

Each beautiful passage of play is a moment to revel in.  A chance to appreciate the team and players.  Why miss out because of the fear that we ultimately don’t outright win a competition that is massively difficult to win?

Right now we are in three competitions and this point might be as good as it gets for us.

For goodness sake, let’s at least enjoy it while we can.

Anybody wishing to hitch a ride in George’s cab can hail him on Twitter @Blackburngeorge (prepare to share the fare, aye).

*No taxis were harmed in the production of this blog

35 comments on “Arsenal Edging Closer – Time To Enjoy, Time To Be Happy

  1. I think this is one of your best articles, George – it goes right to the heart of what it should mean to be a supporter.


  2. Be happy mate. We are in a tittle race for the first time in a while, and that’s a step forward regardless of how it ends.
    Then we look to improve again next season. I for one, am really please with how the squad has gelled, performed and improved.


  3. Oh bollocks Andrew got there before me. PG you have encapsulated my understanding of being an Arsenal fan. Enjoy the moment, they are so great to watch. Look forward to the next game…..Excellent piece George…thanks


  4. Well said. Posts like this are why I read this blog. Fed up of whinging fans who forget that the reason we follow football is because we enjoy it. We aren’t the players. We don’t need to ‘focus on the next game’ and all the other clichés. We savour and enjoy what we get given, and what we’ve been given at the moment is a club that’s playing well, acting like mates off the pitch, and carrying an upward momentum. We won’t always have this. It’s time to enjoy ourselves. People who can’t need to reexamine their relationship with football.


  5. “It seems to me that the fear of not winning the whole competition is stopping many people enjoying the journey.”

    Absolutely agree with every point George and Andrew


  6. I agree entirely. The tin is the icing on the cake – though I would love some icing. And we are against those with more resources than us. At the start of the season I was worried about being in the top 4 now I am not. Well not as much anyway. I am enjoying the ride and if it leads to confidence and investment growth then all the better.

    I have a mate who happens to be a spurs fan. They won some tin more recently than we won some tin. Ask him if he would rather be in our position or theirs…………

    Interestingly there is a science that looks at how people look at an event after it is over based on the conclusion and if that changes the level of enjoyment or achievement once the conclusion is known. Apparently there are people who having enjoyed an event then look back as the final conclusion is not what they wanted and view the entire event as disastrous.


  7. Spot on mate, people get too caught up in the trophy side ! I enjoy watching the arsenal, and celebrate every win like it was a trophy 😊 would love to win a trophy but just challenging for one is great in itself !


  8. I agree entirely with this article, I’m enjoying every moment, right now!


  9. Quite interesting article, for a real fan should appreciate every step towards what may come out as a successful destiny (trophy) COYG!


  10. I think it was 88 when we had a great start to the season, unbeaten and a very young team were flying only to be stopped once again by a ref at old Trafford. We didn’t win the league that year but it was none the less a great time to be a ARSENAL fan. At that time there were only Gooners and no doomers and the team could play with a positive attitude instead of having to play with the grey cloud many football watchers bring into the stadium. I really don’t believe were going to win the league this year but I’m still loving every moment were top. Being a fan is about the dream of what might happen otherwise we wouldn’t have 92 clubs in our fantastic league. It is also another reason I like watching the youngsters because you can dream you have just watched the new Brady or Rocky coming through the ranks.


  11. George, you have to bring over ZimPaul’s post from the last thread – that deserves a wider audience.


  12. As a kid all I wanted was to win the facup that’s a dream that has been for filled over and over and over again I just love The Arsenal


  13. C/F from yesterday.

    ZimPaul January 26, 2014 at 10:29 am Edit

    Lukas is sounding and looking hungry, I like that. Just the right time too.

    I like a little 22 game mid-season snapshot sometimes. It doesn’t actually get better, not much anyway, adventures in the life and times of Arsenal. Sitting top. Knife edge battles to come against the two arch-enemies of any semblance of remaining football equity, against the two most financially stupefied until their eyeballs pop, full of strut and sweating arrogance. We are the sole representative right at the top of something approximating any sense financial fair play.

    We are rotating week in and out the best, most attractive, most intelligent and sublime midfield in the league playing in front of the tightest defense. We have a great goal scoring record too, and most goals coming through the midfielder machine. We are producing exquisite football moments, and have put another sweet little run together, WWWWW., most recently a football-spirited game against a respected second tier side playing some decent stuff.

    We have the mouth watering prospect of Bayern to come. We are into the 5th or is it 6th round of the FA. And best of all, we are a team’s team that stands by each other. No mega-star studded team of pin-up divas this. Just very, very good players enjoying playing Wenger-ball, several of whom are implausibly young like Gnabry and Gedi, Aaron and Jack, Jenks, Ox and even Chewie. A team that believes in itself, because it fought and won battles before this. Amongst the more mature, the reals gems, as determined as they are assured, Per, Ozil and Tomas and Santi, Mikel and Flamini.

    Do we have a chance in hell? We better start believing, really believing, because the players and manager do. Ask Giroud. That epitome of the team’s team player, outrageous confidence without the swank, superb work-rate, sublime skills, the unselfish provider of so much to others.


  14. So true George. Just wish I could get rid of the jealousy of those good enough to wear the red’n’white.


  15. Thanks George


  16. You’re welcome,and you were right,great post


  17. The best article ever!!!its a first for me…goes straight to the heart.


  18. Paul’s post is going to be a main piece.


  19. I concur with what everyone else has said. Well done George.

    This idea (lie) that the only criteria by which we judge success is silverware alone comes from elsewhere, the 6,7, 8 years or whatever the f*ck it is now, that mantra of the Sky Sports era, will be repeated ad nauseam until we do. We all know the drill. Perhaps it’s blinded some people to the simple enjoyment of watching football, and following the Arsenal, which is a real shame.

    I’m thoroughly enjoying the season, though frankly you’d be little bit bonkers if you weren’t. Arsenal have exceeded most expectations thus far, and if, whisper it, we don’t win the league this time, then looking at this squad and the way it has progressed, it surely won’t be very long before we do. Here’s hoping.


  20. Passenal is right. As ever. It’s about the journey, not the destination.

    Tin Pots won’t be the definition of what has turly been achieved by AW. Not to say I wouldn’t mind swigging back some champagne in May.

    If anyone cannot relish ever minute of play Arsenal have been producing for most of the last year, they should not be called ‘fans’ – looking at you Piers Morgen. Each 90 minutes of play has been a shear joy to watch – even when this team hasn’t won a game you could see the effort striving for it and the natural ability shining through.

    We have seen the growth of Szczy to his full potential. Fabby is keeping him on his toes. Bac and Gibbs are back to their best. Jenks and Nacho are more than able cover. Kos and Per – no comment needed. TV5 is acting like a proper club captain and braving out out on the bench. We have what seems now the perfect blend of battle hardened experience and callow enthusiastic youthfulness in the team.

    Our midfield and attack is a seemless blend of any 6 or more players who can strike and score from anywhere – I think Napoli away as the only game I can remember where we didn’t look likely to score enough goals to win a game.

    The Club has been so well managed financially that fans expect to get an Ozil type player bought in at every transfer window, and isn’t it ironic that many of these ‘fans’ have been the ones that were the most dismissive of the same astute financial management that could deliver players like Ozil and maybe Draxler?




  22. George is baaack! He didn’t go very far and nor for very long, but after the Thursday-Friday break, with today’s piece, he drove every nail with a direct hit the head.

    George you remind me of something that drives me up the wall with twitter during a match. Many of these supporters have completely lost the capacity to appreciate the drama of a game as it unfolds. Instead they torture themselves agonizing over every misplaced pass, tackle or mishit. They watch the game as if it was being played by machines, not humans. Attitudes range between extremes. Our opponents either have no right to compete but are simply extras on a stage to be rolled over by the Arsenal juggernaut OR the opponents are supermen who can do no wrong as they cringe in fear that everything Arsenal does will end in disaster while our rivals are steamrollers. Just the fact that they have more time for the keyboard than the actual competition on the field suggests that deep inside they care little about how well we play, only about the end product, if at all.

    Your call to enjoy the moment may have much resonance on PA but to my mind will fall on deaf ears outside as too many fans are already victims of the perceived wisdom that the “oilers” have a lock on the title because they have the means to overspend and will. If these fans (and journos) would truly reflect on our performance since January 2013 to date, having accrued more points than our English rivals with basically the same squad, AFC has already dealt a hammer blow to the argument that having the biggest spend is essential to our success. I have no doubt that given the proven leadership of AW and the growing experience of this squad that this journey will go down to the wire.

    So I am not going to engage in psychological self deception of expecting the worst but hoping for the best. As Marcus Garvey exhorted “Without confidence, you are twice defeated in the race of life.”


  23. Fine piece an Ode to Joy indeed

    I would not for a moment tell other Arsenal fans how they should support the club

    I do however wonder what the fuck some of them are doing whingeing over the lack of a clean sheet in a 5-1 win, flagellating themselves and every one at the club every second of the transfer window, poring over the accounts ( of which they understand Jack) and generally cursing any action the club takes as incompetent or deliberately dishonest.

    They do not see a thing – not a thing


  24. Abso-****in’-lutely, PG.

    You nailed it right there.



  25. This article made me believe, that there are SOME good journos out there. Albeit hiding in Germany.


  26. Spot on PG.

    If I could not enjoy watching Arsenal and giving my unconditional support and glorying in the wonderful football for 9 months starting in August, in case we do not win something in the following May, then I would probably go and watch the fcuking grass grow instead.


  27. Weve developed a complex after many years of not being good enough and close misses , Many fans are scared to emotionally invest themselves and believe. But i agree we are having a good run and should revel in it.


  28. Bravo, PG. Fear sucks all the enjoyment out of life, not just football. Bad things will happen. You cannot ward off the bad things by not celebrating the good.

    Looking forward to ZP’s main post.


  29. Liverpool at Home in the cup
    City get Chelsea.

    Top four exterminator in the fifth round.


  30. I await the First Big Test for Arsenal headline


  31. Clever so and so..


  32. The real shame is that although I believe we can beat anyone on our day having to play top teams every three days for two months will eventually be our undoing. fixtures, bans and injuries will do for us this season however the big victories this year we must enjoy probably more than any season for decades. I think we will beat Bayern over the two legs but there will be games when we have to use our all of squad that may just be a little two much. What I’m trying to say and not very well is I rate our team against any other however line all the top teams against us all together and it becomes more difficult. The point of the article is whatever outcome we think will happen or indeed happens we need to enjoy the fact that we are lucky enough to support one of the best clubs in the world and we are doing well enough to play top teams every week.
    Coventry supporters were excellent on Friday and by the look of them totally enjoyed a day out in the sun away from the storm they have endured the last couple of years. Many people who align themselves with our great club should take the lead from supporters of lower league clubs and enjoy supporting their club and not the glory it might bring


  33. Well said, A or B.

    On another note:

    Rafael “Boltonised” Stanislas…. Wrinky still won…. The Mental battle… With himself!


    Only joking.

    It’s just that, well, I tried to watch the Chelsea match. 20 mins I lasted before I started x2, then x16, till, after the first goal – x64 till the start of the second half.
    That didn’t last long either. Once I had the ff on full pace I couldn’t see why the number of goals hadn’t changed, and thank goodness for that.

    Was that game as shit as the Ausopen Final was good?

    How the **** can one be miserable when seeing the QUALITY of Arsenal’s football, even when they **** up. What you miserables crave, obviously, is Bolton v Blackburn, circa 2007.

    One could choose to at least acknowledge the mental challenges Wawrinka had to deal with during his run to the title, having always been no.2 Swiss to the Fed, having previously failed to win a single set in 12 meetings, and having to watch his good friend showing emotion and “tactics” – right at the time he’s receiving a thoroughly spanking.

    Stan questioned himself, still made errors, but battled through. He believed. He overcame.

    And, perhaps, there are lessons or ideas for us from Wawrinka’s virgin/maiden Grand Slam victory.



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