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No Hammer Blow Tonight

I was delighted when Arsene Wenger took the trouble to write me an email yesterday about the win over Wigan, the remaining Premier League fixtures and the battle for fourth place. He ended by saying: “We have been in this situation before and I think we have the focus, the quality, the spirit and the desire to achieve what we want.” It seemed somehow typical of him to take time out of his busy schedule to find such reassuring words for me, and it all contributed to the rosy glow that had enfolded me ever since Santi slotted that final penalty late on Saturday afternoon. However, his sentiments didn’t seem to have such a positive effect on Le Grove’s apostles, who were positively apoplectic this morning about the situation that The Arsenal find themselves in: indeed, the manager was openly mocked for his letter, and I guess the sad thing is that he always will be now by certain sections of the fan base, no matter what he achieves between now and whenever he decides it’s time to call it a day. What I did find interesting was the scorn that was poured on the Untold lot, and in particular the link made between those who support Arsene Wenger and those who hold any kind of religious faith: both positions were laughed loudly out of court as being quite ridiculous, it somehow not quite occurring that it was they themselves that had made the comparison.

But strangely their leaps of logic made me think of the following lines from Melville’s Moby Dick (and I wish I was mature enough not to find that funny).

“There, then, he sat, the sign and symbol of a man without faith, hopelessly holding up hope in the midst of despair.”

If, as I suspect, we have all felt like like that from time to time in our Arsenal journey, then how much more must the manager have felt like it in the aftermath of crushing defeats and unwanted embarrassments. But what else is there to do when all seems lost? You can’t just give up, so you might as well light your lantern and provide something for the crew to fix their gaze on in the hope that things might somehow seem better in the morning. However, right now I don’t find the Manager’s words at all empty: we are in a good position and are very far from despair – we have been here before, and if anyone doubted the spirit and desire then they should have had all doubts removed by the Wembley performance. There seems to be a common perception that 120 minutes and penalties will have left us spent, exhausted and not at all ready to take on West Ham. But the bookies don’t think that: we are 4/9 to beat them with as big as 7/2 the draw and any price you like on a real hammer blow to our Champion League credentials. And you can bet the manager and players don’t, and nor do I. I reckon that the burden of expectation pre-Wigan has been pretty intense for the team, and that has now been gloriously lifted. Expect to see us quick out of the blocks this evening, with Podolski, Rosicky and Giroud all particularly keen to stake their Cup Final claims. Jenkinson too, and Gibbs will provide fresh legs, while Kalstrom may also play, which will be interesting. I expect we won’t see quite see so much of Ramsey, Oxlade, Santi and Sanogo (my new favourite player), but they will be waiting in the wings, and I also expect that the manager will make at least one tactical decision that will surprise us all a little bit. For the first time for quite some time I am really looking forward to the game, and although I am sad that the Box Office wouldn’t let me purchase two tickets for it last week (you’re only a Red Member, Sir: more than my job’s worth to let you buy both), I shall be very much there, right in front of the TV, ready to do serious battle with anyone who says that this is a poor squad managed by a man who no longer knows what he is doing. I don’t need to believe in him: the stadium we are playing in is proof enough of his genius.

 

Once again this post was brought to us by @foreverheady .

 

 

 

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88 comments on “No Hammer Blow Tonight

  1. Also his maths are as shit as his opinions.

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  2. I have been saying for years, since the first post I ever read on that site, that grovers were spuds and nothing has ever happened to change that feeling
    The fact they have hits shows they have achieved their target of being controversial nothing more nothing less. As they are spuds trolling AFC fans I will not engage them, they have done more over the years to upset the ARSENAL following than their lillywhite team will ever achieve

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  3. in other news panathinaikos is beating o.f.i in extra time in cup semi final…… completely irrelevant…europe we are coming!

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  4. haha a_or_b ….genius….!!

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  5. Hunter did you never ask the Groaners why the call their blog Le Grove and not,say, The Grove? We all know the answer why, they’ve been called out for their obvious xenophobia and bigotry on blogs like 7am (without reply) but it’d still have been interesting to know what the attempted replies would’ve been.

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  6. hahaha trolling the trollers!

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  7. You must have got under someone’s skin, hunter13. That was hilarious.

    We’ve got our Aaron back. I am very happy.

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  8. Palace look good for at least a draw. And whoever put City to draw Sunderland at 9/1 is insane. That game is going to make the punters who bet on a draw extremely happy. City is absolute shit without Silva and Yaya.

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  9. Crystal Palace are two up!

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  10. “I have been saying for years, since the first post I ever read on that site, that grovers were spuds and nothing has ever happened to change that feeling”

    Me too! Either that or in the employ of Red & White holdings. Arsenal online support took a definite turn for the worse when they appeared on the landscape and the fact it appeared at the same time as the Uzbeki gangster is no coincidence

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  11. Crystal Palace are working on our behalf…long live Pulis…..

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  12. Oh my, Oilers 1 Black Cats 1

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  13. Well, well, another good night

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  14. Not a popular man Pulis but he joined Palace when everyone had written them off – got them organised – couple of loans in January

    And now they are comfortable with four games to go

    And the bugger goes to Goodison and stops Everton dead

    Manager of the season I shit you not

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  15. I wonder will Everton and City get the same level of criticism Arsenal would get in the same situation? I won’t hold my breath waiting for an answer to that one!

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  16. With four/five games to go last season Wigan looked to be just about safe with a couple of easy home games to grab the points they needed to stay up.

    But Martinez’s side folded in the last phase of the race

    And the manager joined Everton

    You can see where I am going with this

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  17. Let’s hope your feeling is right anicoll5

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  18. Only a matter of time before some specialist in patronising disdain tells us what a lucky boy Arsène is.

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  19. Merlot

    Alan Hudson, another ex-player has become another rent-a-mouth. Wenger’s success was down to inheriting GG magnificent back four……

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  20. Thank you, Tiny Penis. Back in our hands.

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  21. Sorry. I now realise how that reads.

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  22. Does Hudson not remember that back 4 finishing 12th?

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  23. It’s OK, FG. No-one noticed.

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  24. five games just five fucking games COME ON YOU RIP ROARING HEARTBREAKING EXILHARATING GLOURIOUS GUNNERS !!!

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  25. PG, and that side had merse in it, but when he said we had the worst ARSENAL side in decades that part of his life was just a haze.

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  26. Man, I should have bet a grand on Sunderland drawing against City. I knew they were going to draw even after Cattermole fluffed up and gave the ball away right in front of his area for City’s first goal.

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  27. well ….lovebale mr martinez…with your class and speeches…its pretty different when youre flying under the radar and when you have to get …compulsory results…

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  28. Sensational Arsenal

    none ..not one ..had the balls to stand up and talk logically about arsenal…they are so full of hatred theyve got to be spuds like a_or_b says…

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  29. pedantic george
    April 16, 2014 at 10:44 pm

    or losing european finals with 50mtrs lobs in dying secs of the game……

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  30. Alan Hudson – I thought he was living in a doss house in Stoke last year and waiting for a liver transplant having been pissed since 1972 – I kid you not – where do they dig these lunatics up from ?

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  31. I am amazed Hudson even knows who Graham iz

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  32. Back in our own hands, there are always a few stange results at the end of the season. Can’t wait for the FA cup final but it would be nice to have CL football secured first.

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  33. I went over there to see what all the fuss was about and they were just gushing over Bale. They were saying that Bale was miles better than Walcott even though the statistics tell a completely different story. They are fucking Spuds after all.

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  34. The moment when the Cup Final Ref took exception to an AKB moment.

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  35. BASTERDS. I’ll never forgive them for that. What a bunch of f•••Ng clowns.
    Well well well, looks like a few results went our way past few days. Our injured coming back. Its going to be an interesting last few games . To hell with all else.
    HERE COME THE ARSENAL!!!!!!

    Great comments everyone. HUNTER , enjoyed reading about your MIS?adventures at the intellectual swamp that is le grove.
    Now go wash up.. 😉

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  36. As for the plundits and our own useful idiots who said injuries to our best players was no explanation for our recent dip in results, what say them as the Oilers of Manchester begin to fall away with Yaya injured vs Liverpool and Silva unable to play yesterday? This is a team which spent £120 million on players last summer for fuck’s sake.

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