56 Comments

Arsenal v Barcelona:Heard and not Seen

get-attachment
Normally you would be in the expert hands of Andrew and he would be writing this up, however he’s on the old Eurostar going or coming, to here or there so I’ve volunteered to stand in or write in or write up, and no doubt will soon be standing down.Perhaps it is “writes up?” but knowing things are,Wrights probably down after yesterday.
Except I haven’t seen the game, I heard it.The old Blind Pew experience!
I listened “in” to the excellent service supplied by AFC on Arsenal player, as for us located outside of the UK, the BBC puts blocks on Five Live over the radio-wave borders.Thanks Bleeb (as good ol’Fins would say).
Dan Roebuck is the commentator general  (and a fine asset to AFC he is) and in this occasion he was ably assisted (as he often is) by ex-Gunner, Stephen Hughes.
If you don’t listen “in” to the match-day coverage, aside of you genuinely missing an articulate commentary on the action, you are also missing out on the in-jokes. For example, whose wearing the lucky(ha ha that old chestnut!)scarves, or if the lucky brussels sprout that a chap from Spain puts into his freezer on match days is working and now after last night we had the  ‘lucky’ cabbage that somebody else shoved in the freezer in order for us to win the game.
And then there’s the Gooners who knit while the games in play, who go by the name of Sarah and Megan for whom or what is well beyond moi, but it seems to sooth the old nerves apparently and good on them. The microcosm of superstition in Gooner-world is mightily fascinating. Who knows how bizarre it can get, a great index of possibilities?Somebody even offered to get in a freezer for luck themselves yesterday(no joke) rather than shoving the lucky cabbage in there  —- all in the name of Lady Luck. How she is courted! (why is she a she pray tell?)…
Anyway,from what I could hear, King Mesut’s  pre-match urge to the fan-base gebirge was to be as loud as possible in order to sweep the team along,and it certainly sounded that way,which meant high octane excitement to those of us imagining the in-play. And the whistle blew and the game got under way.
All I can recall from the first half is that the Ox messed up a chance, and we seemed to be doing well and then the Ox took a knock and tried to play on, and limped off into the tunnel at HT. I think most Arsenal fans thought(myself included) that we might be able to win this game,yet really
I was terrified that the old Vampire might start tearing us apart not with his teeth but with his skill, but obviously the crosses were out and everyone had scoffed a load of garlic,but he certainly came close to scoring at the end of the half. Mind you old Bela Lugosi, hes a good player despite his biting antics.
However the Ox came on for the second half, but couldn’t run the injury off and he went back down the tunnel again.
The crowd in the stadium didn’t sound as loud in the second, yet I recall some intense pressure by Arsenal including a close chance by Larry and then Barcelona making a counter attack and scoring. The commentary team echoed that strange feeling that you get from watching (or listening) an Arsenal game,the kind where you hope for something extraordinary and it starts to slip away and everyone’s mouths starts drooping like Bruce Grobbelar’s moustachio (for those of you too young to know, Bruce was a famous TV chef). After that there weren’t too many jokes by the voices on the internet radio. And nobody gave a crépe about the cabbage, brussel or the bloke in the freezer.Maybe hes still there,nice and still, next to the peas?
As the Arsenal were still hanging on and who knows what might happen, I started wondering if  they could they repeat the same result as back in 2011? Time flies doesn’t it?What a game that was, and regardless of his loyalty to AFC, old Van der Graf-Percy could certainly strike a ball.What a game Jack had that night too, and how difficult things have been for him since.
Switch! back to the game… a defensive mistake by Per lead to What a Mess by Frank Muir getting hacked by the Flamkuchen and a  penalty it was.And became converted by the big Mess.At that point everyone seemed to think it was over.And after a bit of added time it was.
I’m personally not part of the tweety-pie world or go on the devils-own blogs anymore as life is too short,but if I was the Comté de St.Germain (living forever) and took the luxury of looking at Tweetsville and the blogs, I’m sure I would observe the frothing phlegm and finger pointing meltdown on at Per,Larry,AOC and the Flammkuchen. Not that the critical voices could do any better themselves.Yes, I know we’ve all aloud to have an opinion, but as  Alvy Singer would say ” do you have to give it so loud?”
If they could then perhaps they might have played for the Arsenal,and taken a bit of responsibility, but such is the phantasy world of armchair illusion is that when you sit in it, you too believe that you can be a Arsenal player of the highest calibre, either that or become weird bloke Davros and try to take over the world or the internet or even your own living room?
You see the armchair converts you into a bionic Gunner.The sideburns of Charlie George, the left foot of Liam Brady, the grit of Tony Adams and the rest from Mr. Henry. and the intelligence of that old Arsenal fan,Einstein. My Arsenal.Even Gus Cesar was better than any of them thar grumble-weeds. But I wont tell them if you don’t.
Well, what can we do? Perhaps listen to the tune by Rodgerd and Frankenstein “Happy Talk” that was in a film called South Pacific, made in 1958 about life on a farm in the mid- west during Christmas. Anyway some lyrics go like this…
“Happy talking talking happy talk, talk about things you like to do, if you don’t have a dream how you gonna have a dream come true?” um beep beep, um beep beep-that bit isn’t in the lyrics though and it goes on a bit longer, but ye get the point?
Yousa thinks that’s potty? Now way guy, that’s the only way,even if old Lao Tze says it aint! Per needs support, what the point of frying his Arsenal when he knows what happened?So do all the other lads and so does Arsène. They dont need our advice, but they do need our support and belief. After all we now have to take the great Norvern overland road to the Underworld of  Hades, the great lair of our old arch enemies them Red Devils.So hopefully somebody will bring a bell,book and candle and do the job rather than asking the brussel sprout kami for help?
The Manure breath-beasts will be smacking their lips in anticipation, and our old Puddleglums will be glumming their puddles,but thats Steww’s job to speculate on that one.And I’m sure his preview will be great as always…
Chins up me old Gooners,where there’s life there’s hope.Plenty to sing for, and we still haven’t been booted out of the CL,yet…
And if you lean in a little you can hear in the somewhere in the background the sound of Brian Moore’s commentary “and that was a great goal by Sammels” “two goals in something like 90 seconds”, a bit echoey?-yes a bit, faint?-maybe, but full of passion…and according to some, history repeats itself, and then there’s the old 5th Dimension,no not that band or album, but the dimension where all possibilities are already being played out and all things can happend…mmmm think on!
Right,I’m off to see what’s in the freezer, lucky something I hope! and oh yes,COYG!

 

Comment navigation

← Older Comments

56 comments on “Arsenal v Barcelona:Heard and not Seen

  1. Thank you Mills – I trust you did not return from the freezer empty handed

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Andy, the Arsenal shooting boots are stuck in the freezer.

    As for a certain “lady”, must have been a bummeree?

    Like

  3. It is out of my system now
    We played well – needed to score but didn’t
    They are red hot – especially the chemically induced tax dodging dwarf*
    Let’s get on to Sunday and let’s play the same and slice them up, and if we do, we will

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Hi Andrew,
    I’ve been feeing down in the dumps today, still brooding over the what might have beens from last night.

    Like

  5. We can take some solace from knowing that we were an even match for the best team in the world last night, they got the breaks and we didn’t.

    Like

  6. As we all have DC – the chance was there

    Anyway fuck that

    Our opponents on Sunday have had two formidable contests against the mighty Shrewsbury and tomorrow night have to take on the mighty Miteland

    Whereas we have had a nice soft week although I understand we spent our time playing some small Spanish side no one has ever heard of.

    Like

  7. Citeh winding me up – Kiev too

    Like

  8. Damien Duff on Irish TV when talking about Pique getting booked last night, says he has no doubt that he got himself booked on purpose, DD says he had a manager (ex CFC player) who would tell players on 4 bookings to get themselves booked to get the 5 booking suspension out of the way.
    Liam Brady and Didi Hamann both agree that Pique got himself booked on purpose.

    Brady said on the game last night that Ox lacked composure, goalie make good save from Giroud header, and there were other half chances, but that Barca had lots of chances, and he agreed with DD that mistakes were made on the first goal, Coquelin, Mert, Kos and Monreal all made mistakes. DH was very critical of Monreal on the goal, said he should have let Neymar have the shot at goal, and just made sure the pass to Messi option was not on.

    Brady was very scathing over the cheating antics of the Barca players, especially Alaba and Alves,

    One thing on the first goal watching it again, I was amazed at how poor Coquelin done, when Neymar got the ball in their half Coq firstly tried to tackle him from the wrong side, making it easy for Neymar to turn and head for our goal, then he just let Neymar run away from him, it was odd to see Coquelin not even come close to being able to track back, he was at least 30 yards back when Neymar put in the assist.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. reports suggest that Oxlade-Chamberlain is due a scan tomorrow, with fears that he has suffered knee ligament and ankle damage, he left the stadium last night on crutches with his right leg heavily strapped.

    Like

  10. Thanks Mills: not only a tour de force but a timely reminder of the charms of the Arsenal in-house commentary. Lady Luck from Dame Fortune and one time Roman Goddess, and no doubt close bosom friend of Miss Chance, though our missed chances seemed to put the manager in a right old paddy.
    And that may prove the most significant outcome of the night , for he doesn’t often react like that – but when he does it can often prove terminal for the careers of those that vex him so. We shall see what we shall see.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. You’re fight FH, Arsene was steaming the other night and I expect the tongue lashing the players received from him made my rant seem mild and reasoned!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. TEAM NEWS: GABRIEL, OX AND WILSHERE

    Arsène Wenger has revealed the latest team news ahead of Sunday’s game against Manchester United:

    on Gabriel…
    He is coming back into the squad tomorrow, so we will see how he responds to that, but the signs are positive. He might be available for Sunday.

    on Oxlade-Chamberlain…
    He has a scan today, he will not be available for Sunday.

    on Wilshere…
    He is not back in full training yet.

    on other team news…
    Everyone else is the same as before, so there’s no Rosicky, Cazorla, Wilshere.

    Copyright 2016 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to http://www.arsenal.com as the source

    Read more at http://www.arsenal.com/news/news-archive/20160225/team-news-gabriel-ox-and-wilshere#o1ClHPVXzdFwhlIM.99

    Like

  13. so what is the implication of hull replay on the 8th to other matches?

    Like

  14. Probably sooner after Spuds than is ideal but I presume we will send another heavily changed side at the KC.

    At least it gives three clear days before the 4th round against Watford to rest any players who need it and flog some tickets !

    Like

  15. 7pm kick off for the Hull FA Cup replay

    FA CUP FIFTH-ROUND REPLAY DATE CONFIRMED

    We can now confirm that our FA Cup fifth-round replay against Hull City will be played as under:

    Hull City v Arsenal
    Tuesday, March 8
    Kick off: 7pm
    KC Stadium
    Live on: BT Sport
    The club will be offering subsidised coach travel for supporters going to the match.
    Click here for full details.

    Copyright 2016 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to http://www.arsenal.com as the source

    Read more at http://www.arsenal.com/news/news-archive/20160225/fa-cup-fifth-round-replay-date-confirmed#8sYYX0ZzkXsIM0AU.99

    Like

  16. Wenger says Oxlade-Chamberlain has a “serious” knee injury, and is out for at least a few weeks, but he does not think he will miss the Euros, but the lad is seeing a specialist today.

    Gabriel has fitness tests today and tomorrow.

    Like

  17. ox’s injury is “two three weeks” at least, but could be “six or seven”, club will know more later today.

    Like

  18. Certainly a nasty looking clash between Mascherano and the Ox and one of them was going to end up injured, sorry its our boy.

    I see the club’s provision of coaches to assist fans to travel to the Hull replay was met with the predictable abuse yesterday. Despite the club saying they had tried to arrange a train but none were available the professional moaners were out on social media ” As usual the club letting down fans by providing only coaches” ” We should be provided with train to Hull” etcetera etcetera

    Perhaps they should have hired the Flying Scotsman ?

    Liked by 2 people

  19. For any who did not see Stuart Price’s picture of the aforementioned locomotive passing the Ems yesterday see below from this morning’s Daily Telegraph;

    Marvellous shot, I hope it is available to buy in due course.

    Liked by 3 people

  20. europa league draw

    Liked by 1 person

  21. yes anicol they are only happy when they can moan at the club, some even demanded that the club put on FREE travel.

    Lots whinging about it being on the Tuesday, of course they could see no reason why it could not be played on the QF weekend,(well AFC will have lots of midweeks free now we are out of the CL), it never even crossed their mind that Hull might win the replay and they have 7 league games in April, if they beat us and then drew with Watford, their promotion bid could be severely handicapped if said Watford game is not played on the QF weekend. Also Arsenal may only have 5 games fixed for April, but again if we beat Hull, we have the WBA game to fit in, and if we draw or beat Watford there is one or two more FA Cup games to fit in and moved BPL games to sort out.
    But of course the whingers don’t consider any of this, and only see an opportunity to have a go at Arsenal.

    Like

  22. this comment by AW today about Welbeck’s injury is a bit concerning “Welbeck is still in the squad and he is not completely over his knee problem. He has done really well and is very fit.”

    Like

  23. arsenal games picked for TV coverage

    9 April: West Ham A (12:45) BT
    17 April: Palace H (4:00) SKY
    24 April: Sunderland A (2:05) SKY
    30 April: Norwich H (5:30) SKY

    Like

  24. Poor old Ox. Contrary to some plunditary here and there he played well in that first half as evidenced by the marginal drop in threat AFC had in the second half. The pitch doesn’t often lie.

    Essentially just as the lad was coming back into serious big time form he gets injured again and that’s not going to help his confidence. It also doesn’t take a coach or plundit of the level of Gary Neville (don’t laugh) to work out that he has more then a bit of Gazza about him (on the pitch) including atrocious technique in the tackle as everyone saw the other night. Sure his touch was marginally heavy but I couldn’t critique him for that. another set back following an attempted tackle won’t help the improvement in the defensive side of his game.

    The Experts will be incapable of being patient with this athlete on his return, being experts an all.

    Liked by 1 person

  25. For those who are keen on the business side;

    “The Group has maintained a strong cash position with balances as at 30 November 2015 of £159.4 million (2014 – £161.5 million), inclusive of debt service reserves, which are not available for football purposes, of £23.5 million (2014 – £22.8 million). The cash balance is some £68.7 million lower than the 31 May 2015 figure. This reflects net cash outflows for the period on player transfers, of £39.4 million, and capital expenditure, of £10.5 million.

    We also paid corporation tax of £4.8 million being the balance of the tax bill on our 2014/15 profits.

    The contribution that football makes to the economy as a whole is sometimes overlooked and it is worth noting that during the first half of the financial year the Group paid across to the Exchequer £77.6 million of taxation being corporation tax, PAYE, national insurance and VAT.

    The cash outflow on transfers reflects mainly the settlement of instalments due on past transfers and means that the net outstanding liability on transfers has reduced from £65.6 million at 31 May 2015 to £45.4 million at 30 November 2015. The capital expenditure for the period is comparatively high and reflects the important development projects underway at the London Colney and Hale End training grounds, as well as enhancements at the Emirates, such as the new LED floodlights.”

    Like

  26. Compare £77.6 million in taxation for the first half of the financial year with £130 million paid by Google over ten years….

    Liked by 3 people

  27. I don’t think the Google figures include PAYE, NI or VAT GP – their 2,300 UK employees pay a shed load of tax with average annual earnings around the £160k mark.

    The tax/NI take on that average income is about £105,000 a year, before the employee spends anything. Google’s £130 million deal with HMRC was notional corporation tax.

    Mind you Google are a $550 bn dollar company, while we are just a little old $1.5 bn business !

    Like

  28. Dancing in the streets of Zurich as El Presidente Gianni Infantino is elected.

    Well that is all right then.

    Like

  29. Usmanov: “I can confirm that I have purchased the whole stake of Farhad Moshiri, thereby increasing my holding in Arsenal to over 30%”

    Like

  30. Daniel Cowan ‏@thedanielcowan 6h6 hours ago
    £136m is a lot of money but it’s £64m short of Twitter expert predictions which proves their assertions of what we can spend is bunkum.

    Liked by 2 people

  31. Anicoll

    I’m not surprised that I compared apples with pears…it’s always the way…

    Liked by 1 person

  32. French Government has charged Google 1.3 billion for less business activity than they had in the UK.
    Either osbourne is the most incompetent Chancellor ever or he has taken a massive backhander, bit like our refs.

    Liked by 2 people

  33. the poor standard of football journalism never fails to surprise, we have the whole coverage of Usmanov buying out his R&W partners Arsenal shares, being reported like he had just bought an extra 18,000 shares, and not in fact brought his total shareholding to around 18,000. We have quotes from AU about how he loves AFC etc etc and how he is in it for the long haul. Then we have the same media outlets reporting that Usmanov is about to buy Everton, something he can not do if he owns 10% or more shares in AFC. The old saying springs to mind – paper never refuses ink.

    Liked by 2 people

  34. While gazing up red faced and seating in the gym an hour ago I saw that malicious little shit Jonathan Liew spouting off about FIFA and Infantino and how he was not the man for the job etc. Given that the bloke has been in the job less than 24 hours the scathing abuse seemed a bit premature.

    Seems to me the mainstream media, the likes of Liew, Conn, Kay and Dickenson among others are fucking brilliant running round shouting about corruption loudly, pointing fingers, saying this bloke is a wrong un and “corruption” must be “rooted out”.

    Beyond that they don’t seem to have any idea how to go about it.

    Like

  35. I often remember Alisher queuing behind me at the bar in the Clock End in the late 70’s, a meat and potato pie in each mitt. He had a scarf I think his Mum had knitted.

    Liked by 2 people

  36. A5 – The English mainstream media attacking corruption in FIFA sounds a lot like the English mainstream media attacking Ghaddaffi for lack of democracy in Libya.
    I don’t use that metaphor lightly.

    Liked by 2 people

  37. It stems from their terror of having to watch the Qatar World Cup sober Shotts – they’re fighting like cornered rats (banned smiley)

    Liked by 1 person

  38. rumors now that the guy Usmanov bought out at R&W is going to put the £200M towards buying Everton, and that this is where the confusion about Usmanov buying EFC came from.

    Like

  39. I think this is Virginia’s debut for the U18’s, the goalie we signed from Portugal has been training with the club all season, and playing for the U16’s, but was not allowed to play at U18 level. He will be a full time member of the U18 Academy from this summer.

    Like

  40. A strange, almost tired, effort of the usual “ManU v Arsenal Combined XI” article in this morning’s Daily Telegraph

    Manyoo managed only three names, De Gea, Martial and Smalling with the other eight all in red. In some positions the struggling journo did not appear to be able to name any Manc player who would challenge for the place.

    Like

  41. Ed, that looks like an extemley strong line up, maybe thats a reflection of the recent run of poor results.

    Like

  42. A5 – How could the media be promoting anti-corruption in FIFA while failing to highlight the fact that among the two prominent opponents of Infantino were a Sheik and Prince who are fabulously wealthy and powerful because of their royal connections?
    e.g. Sheikh Salman, the head of the Asian Football Confederation, who was runner-up to Infantino and widely tipped by bookmakers to win the vote, was tainted by alleged human rights abuses connected with the suppression of protests in his native Bahrain several years ago, which were part of the so-called Arab Spring.

    Thank heavens, the majority of delegates who voted for Infantino do not suffer from either the hypocrisy or mendacity that pass for journalism in most of the western media.

    Like

  43. I am not too sure why the 209 delegates voted as they did Shotts. It was less than a year ago that the same delegates re-elected Sepp with a comfortable majority.

    I see the old boy’s final day was Friday after 41 years on the FIFA payroll – like a medieval Pope – marvellous, awful, corrupt, ruthless, brilliantly successful. Quite an act. And who knows whether a few years hence we may not look back to the Blatter years at FIFA as a time of comparative sanity.

    Like

  44. a_o_b that U18 line up would not contain any of our first choice U18 team, if you compare it to the FA Youth Cup line up.

    anyway the result was Arsenal 3-3 Aston Villa

    Like

  45. Yaya Sanogo has scored his first goal for Charlton, v Reading, he drew Charlton level after 6 minutes, Kermonrgant had given Reading the lead on 4 minutes

    Like

  46. Charlton Athletic FC ‏@CAFCofficial 28m28 minutes ago
    7′ IT’S YAYA SANOGOOOOOAAAAAALLLLLLL!!!!! #cafc #CAFCLive

    Like

  47. TRAINING REPORT- GABRIEL RETURNS; TWO YOUNGSTERS AND LEGEND TRAIN PRE-MAN UNITED

    by jeorge bird

    Arsenal held their final training session at London Colney this morning prior to tomorrow’s Premier League game away to Manchester United.

    Gabriel played a full part in the session after recovering from a hamstring injury, with the defender in contention to return to the squad tomorrow. Mesut Ozil, meanwhile, was rested from the session but should still play at Old Trafford.

    Two members of the U21 squad- Jeff Reine-Adelaide and Krystian Bielik- were selected to train with the senior side, whilst legend Robert Pires, who announced his retirement this week, also trained. There was, however, no sign of Serge Gnabry, but it remains to be seen whether the winger will head out on loan in the near future.

    Arsenal currently have six first-team players out injured, with Mikel Arteta, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Jack Wilshere, Santi Cazorla, Tomas Rosicky and Carl Jenkinson all out.

    Of those, Arteta appears closest to a return, while Wilshere and Cazorla will hope to be back in action next month. Oxlade-Chamberlain faces a scan to determine to extent of his injury, and there are fears about whether Rosicky will feature again this season. Jenkinson is set for a lengthy spell on the sidelines as a consequence of an injury he suffered whilst on loan at West Ham United.

    With Oxlade-Chamberlain out, Theo Walcott may well be drafted into the starting line-up tomorrow, with Danny Welbeck still not at full sharpness. Gabriel could make the bench, while two fit first-team players- perhaps Mohamed Elneny and Alex Iwobi- will have to be left out of the squad entirely.

    Possible team:

    Cech

    Bellerin-Mertesacker-Koscielny-Monreal

    Coquelin-Ramsey

    Walcott-Ozil-Sanchez

    Giroud

    Subs: Ospina, Gabriel, Gibbs, Chambers, Flamini, Campbell, Welbeck.

    Like

  48. Tella, Nketiah and Pileas scored the goals for the U18’s today. Nkeitah scored his 15th goal of the season whilst Pileas scored his first goal for the club

    Like

  49. Sanogo is upsetting the moaners and groaners, he’s banged two in today so far…

    Like

  50. Oh shit Yaya has his hat trick….how inconvenient…

    Like

Comment navigation

← Older Comments

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: