Saints Debacle.

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Good morning all.

I was about to sit down an attempt to write a blog about the horror show that was Arsenal yesterday, and is Arsenal every week, when I saw that my old Ally Shotta had done one. Having read it I realised I couldn’t improve on it, so I suggest you read this.

Arsenal 7th In Table and Heading Lower

then nip over and discuss it in his comments section.

Shotta and I will be doing a podcast latter today and it will be available on both sites.

Speak latter.


26 comments on “Saints Debacle.

  1. Outplayed and outclassed by a team 19th in the PL at the Emirates.

    I want my Arsenal back.

    Bring back Arsene, or give the job to Arteta/Mert.

    Get rid of Emery by the weekend, he has had enough time for improvement or process and failed miserably.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. a big worry for me is the news that life long Arsenal supporter and current Chairman of the club Sir Chips Keswick, is considering quitting the board cos he and others on it now feel that they have no say what so ever.

    He and Lord Harris of Peckham recently proposed that David O’Leary, an Arsenal player for 19 years, title winner, former Captain, who managed Leeds for a few years and now works as an ambassador for AFC, be promoted onto the board so that he could advise them on football matters,
    basically it would have meant someone on the board who would have the football knowledge to question the decisions of Raul, Edu, Vinny and co.
    But Raul somehow had the power to veto this move. To think people used to talk about Ivan not having the power to question Arsene, but have not a single problem with Raul being able to actually stop the Board being able to question him. Its madness and instead of the bloggers and big twitter accounts being in uproar at this happening, any of them that have even bothered to mention it are all in favor of seeing Sir Chips leave. We really do have a lot of idiots in the fan base.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Eddy, a blog on this subject would be good? Will you have a go?


  4. not up to doing it at the moment George, if someone else would like to expand on the points I raised that would be fine with me.


  5. Sure is worrying Eds. I wonder how Raul has managed to gain power enough to go against the board and push it around, something seems a bit odd in the narrative, like bits are being left out (or more likely Im ignorant of whats really going)?
    Not sure the new coach (whoever it is) will be a powerful one, as why would they put up with the dof bullshit telling you what to do and who they will buy for you.
    My word the Arsenals fkd at the moment. I dont like seeing this. Im sure theres more than a few turning in their graves. It could take a long while to recover from all of this.
    Odd how the flyoverbanner gang arent really raging about how kack we are at the moment? If this was AW we would see the foam spewing from their mouths in apoplectic rage.
    For the last year or so Ive enjoyed watching the Arsenal women more than the men. They play some nice football, and have a coach that knows what hes doing. Shame the club dont do much to promote them, its pretty limited what they offer on the website.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. well Mills the only ones on the board with any real say are Stan and Josh Kroenke, and Raul is Josh’s man, so anything Raul wants goes.

    this is the AFC board, its very clear to see who has and who has not any power in this little lot, I will not be surprised to see Sir chips, ken friar and lord harris all leave the board before very long

    Chairman – Sir Chip Keswick
    Director – Ken Friar OBE
    Director – Lord Harris of Peckham
    Director – Stan Kroenke
    Director – Josh Kroenke


  7. I was meaning more was that Im ignorant of the internal Politik amongst the board, which is now evident, but who said what and who hates who I haven’t anything but spec.
    Who got Raul in?
    This is a major crisis in many ways (re Goodbye Mr Chips and Del Boy Bomber Harris). This is a moment where Arsenal as it was might truly change into something it hasnt ever been ( if my reading of AFC history is right). Also I feel concerned that Ken Fry-up might back out here, that guy is more Arsenal than anyone else at the club at the moment.
    Basic non understanding is at the heart of the matter here. The Kronks want money, they didnt really understand what Weng did, but liked it as he was proactive (ok everything’s reactive, but he had his eyes and ears open, understood the point of unity in teams, of intuition, of the paradoxes of individuality and the collective nature of the team), but don’t know anything about football.
    An opportunity rose and it looks like from the outside throwing a few pfennigs at the situ would mean back in the CL cash. But this idea that footballs simple and easily played out is the fallacy of the internet and the lie of the ego. To be good like Ferguson or Wenger is like being a air traffic controller, you have to be Johnny on the spot all day and night long.

    Except that somehow the wrong type of coach was employed. A simple mistake? Non. We live in a word of mostly easy access evidence. Emery already failed badly at PSG and that was the sign we should have seen.
    Plus all the talk of transition was right, except whoever got Emery in, didnt understand our players, and their progressive style and didnt understand Emrys regressive style. It would mean up to four or five years from his joining that the whole squad would be replaced. But that wasnt the plan( non evidence on my part here just spec). Emery was meant to get us back in the CL and take it from there ( a years bonus beofer teh contract wasnt renewed). But it could never be. The resulting players who left from the minute he arrived and have since departed plus the seemingly clueless set ups, fearful tactics and utterly negative play imposed on a team meant for deadly attack, getting rid of a world class midfielder-Rambo who should be the bloody captain and had the whole team under his guidance ( Raul check out LFC history before the Prem Lge and see how it worked). After Baku accord to the rumours I heard, Emery didnt even talk to the lads or comfort them but sad in a mood on his own. Being the coach means you have t be a Father figure, but the Father figure that is fictional, the Atticus finch of football.
    But by taking the guidance away from the coaching staff, who seem to be at odds with whats happen ( as the rumour suggest) and putting it in middle management that dont know the game, but rely on analytics to suggest investment ( analytics doesnt show why Pepé is a failure at the minute).
    We are no longer proactive, but we are slow in reaction. Hope has been a trickster to everyone at the club, and now we are deep in the mire. If we dont make the CL then someone is going to have to pay, and this potential avalanche of destruction can get much worse, ok Emerys contract is broken and the club has to play more money but now its looks like Auba and Lacca will go and who knows who else?
    How weird that Mesuts playing again.
    Raul isnt a Don. Im bored of all that talk from young kids who watch too much Hollywood crap.The club should be run by the coach at ground level and under no circumstances at gut level. The board should be only active when in crisis and then moving in quick.The Kronks by backing Raul if thats the case are as clueless as Emery and even worse our players. Intelligent players l reduced to being an Allardyce side. and if thats the case then the Kronks dont care about Arsenal, and why should there be anyone at he club who doesnt care.
    Look Im naïf and dont know how to run a football club and nor do I want to or pretend to, but the whole of AFC history is looking down on this situation. Theres more to the club than the wix about global branding and bloody money. Football is not about this or that but both this and that. Nor is it about influencers and bloggers who think they are Mr Arsenal nor the knee jerk reactions of aftv etc. Why did so many people want us to become like City or Chelsea? Its not really going to happen with the Kronks, but the wrecking of dignity and integrity ( as much as those things can arise in football) is a big mistake. One thing Ive always loved was that Arsenal were more than just a cheque book side. I spent years as a kid reading the handbook when it came out, researching the old players an finding out about our history. Most of it seems to be forgotten or not worthy of interest to some of the fans I see.
    I know all things change but sometimes we can be a bit smarter in our evolution, and we arent at the moment. Sniffing around the backside of extinction or footballing mediocrity isnt my cuppa. Nor has it been since the mid 70s for us. And we sure did flirt with relegation.
    We might as well have stayed at Highbury if we werent really going to make any proper transition. We lost a bit of our history leaving that place.And now at this moment we are an average side (hence my Highbury argument). And if the club are hard of understanding at whats causing that then what hope is there expect blind faith that it will eventually change? Proactive means caring, reacting does too, but its often too late.
    Chips and Del Boy going wont change anything, it will just get the hacks and blaggers salivating as they enjoy watching us mess up. Maybe Raul its what Raul wants. I dont know.
    Im bored of Machiavellian narcissists who don’t think of the future and try to pull the wool over peoples eyes. Plenty of it about. But at what price?


  8. mills stop with the staying at Highbury nonsense, we were an average side at Highbury more seasons than not. I still clearly remember most of the 70’s when it was dire stuff, much of the 80’s too. And as much as we have fond memories of Highbury, it really was a bit run down.


  9. sheffield utd are leading man utd 2-0, and seemingly are out playing them. Will we sit back and see Man UTd sack OGS and replace him with the sort of head coach we should be going for.


  10. man utd have scored two quick fire goals to make it 2-2


  11. man utd now with 3 goals in about five minutes to lead 3-2 with about ten minutes left, if utd win the go above us


  12. Ed I knew you were going to say that. Youve misunderstood what you refer to as my nonsense I didnt mean the team play, hence me adding the bit towards the end about being a mediocre team.
    Certainly much of 78-81 was pretty good, some of 82 I know as I went to stacks of the games then. I couldn’t go to as many as I wanted as I came from a poor family and have a disability that makes it difficult to get to games, but I still went regularly. I agree much of the 80s was not so good, but again I went to a few hundred games in that time, and often we were good.And often one thing builds upon another But I do think the Wenger years were the best football Ive seen, and Ive always said that.

    However I also dont agree with what youre saying about we were an average side at Highbury. Arsenal existed at Highbury before 69 ( I think your starting date or was is 1966?). The Arsenal of late 20s through to the end of the 30s was anything but dire, ( yes, I wasn’t there, but relatives were) even Wenger didnt pull off back to back leagues as those sides did. And the club did a lot of renovations in that time too. Arsenal were pretty good in the early 50s too.

    But I dont agree, at the end it wasnt run down it was renovated. Nice new North bank, nice bogs, new seats and oddball clock end, nice for the fat cats. Yes in the 70s and much of the 80s ( I seem to recall your first game was in the 80s from what youve said in the past?) the grand old girl was pretty messed up, but which building wasn’t in those days that had been built back in the Art Deco period? Britain was much poorer in the 80s than now. The last 15 yeasr have since lots of money ploughed into renovations and improvements, but at the loss of style and originality (imo) But what I was talking about was a sense of history, a place where I felt I belonged, that relatives of mine had been part of starting the club (although not Highbury itself, but who worked at the Arsenal and watched the Gunners through 1927(including the cup final of that year and a ticket still exists) till the end of the 60s when the fighting boys turned up.

    But we left Highbury, not because it was run down or a shithole, but because the club wanted more Arsenals on seats, more cash, better transfers, and become a world dominator. You know this already. And thats why I wrote, what was the point of leaving Highbury if we were to become a mediocre team. The point being we needed more revenue to be a major player, according to the vision. But have we been a major player since leaving Highbury? No. Not according to the stats. Weve been pretty good, but not a dominator like the early Wenger years, up to the CL final.

    Its my nonsense, but I fkn hate the new stadium, its anodyne and characterless (imo). All apologies, but I liked the Art Deco of Highbury, I liked its intense atmosphere,(although I didn’t ever go on the clock end as Im not a really a hard guy). Sorry, I didnt make that transition. Im a dinosaur. Im not sure I see a lot of progress. But that doesnt mean Im right or wrong, its just the way I see it.
    But that nonsense of mine, isnt to others. Everything is just a perspective, an experiment in thought, not some definitive truth. Anyone who think they speak the truth has to include everything, and I mean everything that includes pre big bang.


  13. FT: Sheffield Utd 3-3 Man Utd

    sheffield utd above Arsenal, and Man Utd and spurs just the one point behind us


  14. yes Mills, I loved the Art Deco, the entrance at the front, I still remember going up those steps of the main entrance, to get to the ticket office, and being totally in awe of the place, and yet at games being so disappointed by how run down so many parts of the stadium was.
    It would have been great if we could have actually built the new stadium with the Art Deco features of Highbury.

    As for us now being an average team, cos the move has not worked out as great as had been hoped. We could not have seen the rise of oilgarch clubs, CFC and CITY. But for their rise we would surely have had a better time of it since the move. But if we were still in a 38K capacity stadium would we not have been left even further behind.


  15. City, Chelsea, and would add a PGMOL agenda since Fergie effectively installed Mike Riley as head of PGMOL around 2008

    Liked by 1 person

  16. a stat that surprised me today, is that in our last 20 EPL games we have only kept 3 clean sheets.


  17. “But if we were still in a 38K capacity stadium would we not have been left even further behind.”

    We will never know Ed. Certainly looks like we might. And as for the move and hoping for better times and not seeing the rise of the sugar daddy clubs, its true, without them it would have been us and the Manures.

    I was thinking its six finals since the move? Three losses and three wins? 2017 seems a long way away from where we are now.
    I often stood in the corners at Highbury and they always seemed the most deteriorated, the old cover at the North Bank seemed a bit old and knackered. Going through into the ground from Gillespie Roadit often looked a bit broken with the barbed wire on the top of walls etc. Mind you the NB wasnt the same after it was renovated, it lost that old power it had, new bogs or not. Win some lose some?
    As for building the Emirates in an pseudo Art deco style that would have been something, would have potentially got a bit of stick for being Disney, but in years to come it may well have gone beyond its time..? Imagine the Emirates without its regular patch ups and only looking after the pitch, the concrete would soon look pretty horrible?

    Does anyone know who designed the old cover on the nb was it Archie Leitch? I know the old Highbury was(before the Deco stands).


  18. Another helping hand for LiVARpool this weekend

    Liked by 2 people

  19. As we got success and the PL went viral Highbury became to small. Many of the season ticket holders at the Emirates wouldn’t even get the odd ticket.
    Also anyone who sat at the back of the East Stand will testify you couldn’t see anything.
    I loved Highbury but once English football was sold round the world it was to small and we had to move.
    Realistically the only questions were timing and finance staying was never an option.

    Liked by 2 people

  20. I feel like an interloper or worse questioning stadiums and atmospheres, as my experience is pretty damn limited (20 games maybe, most as a kid, only two in prem-villa park in mid-90’s and St Mary’s about 2002) but I can’t help wondering nonetheless.

    Emirates seems pretty low on intimidation factor compared to smaller, tighter grounds. Goodison park when they’re up for it, and they often are against us, seems a tough one. Bramall Lane, going on our game and today’s seems to have it,too.

    Feels like with many of those places crowds are up for it all the time, against us at least, whereas at ours it’s more wait and see. Maybe the biggest part of the crowds involvement at these places is getting on refs and claiming every last thing noisily from minute 1 to 90.


  21. Don’t blame our crowd as such, as about 5 of games I watched were Wales ones at Millennium and it was case of atmosphere being embarrassingly poor but nobody seeming to know what to do about it. I’d try do my bit on rare occasions we did something decent but apart from that didn’t know how to help out.

    Only thing crowd really had was this dreary ‘Waayyy-els, Waaayyy-els’, which stuck in my head a long time but not in a good way.


  22. While I’m questioning anything and everything, as is way at the moment, just how big is our pitch? Too lazy to look it up. I expect it’s biggest in league but maybe by much less than it feels.
    It looks gigantic to me at times, space all over the shop, whereas somewhere like Bournemouth seems tiny in comparison.
    Think I’m right in saying that big pitches help great sides who control ball well but are… not such an asset when you’re what we are at present. Seems maybe a double problem in that we can’t control possession or move opponents around as well and are also vulnerable, with the big spaces, to counters and being passed through, and don’t have speed at centre of pitch to combat it.

    Anyway, I’m rambling. Any feedback from those who’ve been there plenty, and especially who can compare to other grounds, would be appreciated though.


  23. https://www.premierleague.com/stats/top/clubs/penalty_conceded

    Top of one league – penalties conceded – so far this year, think it is one pen given, 5 conceded, oh what an amazing surprise. Riley keeps our negative penalty balance alive and well to a unique extent among the top clubs, and has been happily doing so since 2008


  24. Mandy

    You watch Utd game earlier. In five minute spell, Maguire and Jones each had weird moment where desperation led them to make contact with defenders without ball.

    Neither quite pens for me, but point is it’s actually worth it for most prem defenders to take risks * of quick momentary grab or the like, a little push as players shoot, some contact at speed, etc, but with us it’s the polar opposite. We should be taught to never ever grab shirt, etc. Refs generally merciless with us. They get a chance and bam, they’ll take it.

    Killer for me is that popular perceptions of players are then based on decisions against them, rather than reality of what happened, i.e one of ours does grab and get a pen against, he’s an idiot, a clown; others get away with worse and it never registers against them.

    *or at least in most games, not against Pool for instance.

    Liked by 1 person

  25. Ian thats very true about the back of the East stand (lower tier) and not seeing much. think it was the same in a few grounds across the country.
    Of course the thing that made Highbury small is the aftermath of Hillsborough, and the fact it became all seater. The highest I saw at Highbury was a crowd of 55,000.
    But again, thats not the point I was making. Nobody wanted to leave Highbury because you couldnt see at the bottom lower East, or because you got wet at the clock end or in the old corner sections. Or when the wind blew depsite the stand at the new North Bank you still go pretty wet.
    Here we are, now, at this moment in 8th, a mediocre team and we left a grand stadium, that wasnt crumbling at the end to become a mid table team. Highbury was a fine stadium for a mid table team. Plenty of other teams survive in the pl without big stadia.
    The Emirates needs to be full to function properly and that needs a top four team challenging down to the wire. Seeing empty seats at the Emirates it pretty depressing, yet I went to Highbury when there were only 25,000 and it didnt seem so bad.
    If we stay mediocre, most of the global brand will slip off and find another team to follow?

    Anyway, better to leave it there, we’ve moved, Highbury is a memory for a few of us and we now live in another world.
    After Eds posts yesterday I went down in the keller and rummaged through my old programmes etc, and found some notes my Grandfather left me, he was saying the North Bank only got called that at the and of the 60s before that it was the Laundry end, the Clock end was the College end. Funny to think the ends were called by different names longer than than the new names.
    I knew the clock used to be on the west side , then then North bank, then the college end, and hence the name change.
    He also wrote that until the 60s you could move all around in the ground, as the West lower was terracing, and he said many you to run around to face the end the Guns were attacking. Of course then there were stories back in the thirties that kids were hauled to the front to see, nothing creepy, just passed over head and then kept and eye on once they could see the game properly.
    He had another story he was standing of the southern part of the lower west and some thing had gone on and the bill moved in and asked who did it suddenly every said they did it, including some guy in the upper west shouting out he did it.
    All gone now.


  26. rich I would say one of the reasons why the Emirates is not an intimidating place for visiting teams is that too many of our crowd prefer to go after our players than to get on the back of opposing players or inept Refs.

    Liked by 1 person

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