Get Your Tits Out For the Lads

So I come home from work and turn on the TV to Fox Soccer Channel. On the screen is Sky Sports Andy Gray sitting on a bar stool with Eric Wynalda and that bald, fat, know-nothing, ex-pat Nick Webster. All three are sitting inside the New York bar Nevada Smiths.

Five minutes of watching them talk about a variety of topics, the camera switches to a brunette bimbo with a microphone called Temryss Lane. She’s standing next to a white mid 30’s English woman who has seen better days.

Her name is Miss Manc from Manchester.

Miss Manc’s question is related to Manchester United. It was a redundantly boring question.

Miss Manc is a Nevada Smiths regular. She’s been a regular there for nearly 10 years. I first saw Miss Manc when she was standing on top of the bar showing her small breasts to all and sundry. She was notorious for downing pints and acting like a “lad”. It seems she hasn’t changed – except that she’s well past her sell by date.

More questions came from the Nevada Smiths crowd. Stale, English ex-pats who thought they were Lord of the Manor asked cloying questions about Chelsea and England to Andy Gray. As questions were being answered by Andy and his crew, the Nevada crowd tried to sing lame football chants or shove club scarves and shirts into view of the camera. It was pathetic.

Nevada’s has gone down in my estimation. It’s now a bar riding on it’s reputation.

While some of Nevada’s patrons need to grow up, Fox Soccer Channel needs show a bit more class by hosting a soccer show in a better establishment. They’re equally as embarrassing as drunks like Miss Manc. They will never gain kudos until they change tact.

Cunts of the Season – Stoke City Fans

After the sickening Aaron Ramsey injury back in March, some Stoke fans chanted:

“He’s Only Got One Leg.”

This was chanted both in the Britannia Stadium and outside with some Stoke fans shouting “Buy Him a Parrot”, “Peg Leg Ramsey”, and “I Hope he Never Plays Again.”

On the football phone-ins that same night, some Stoke fans called into BBC Radio 5 Live and said that the sooner Arsenal “get lost from the Premiership and have a game of tickling with Barcelona the better.” Another caller from Stoke was more forward calling the huddle by the Arsenal players at the end of the match “gay” and claimed that Arsenal were “Kings of being the victims.”

I hope that Stoke City get relegated next season.

England 3-1 Mexico

This game confirmed what we already know:

1) England will not win the World Cup but the hype surrounding them will make you think that they will.

2) England are still a set piece team. That’s how they will score in South Africa.

3) England are efficient but very dull.

4) Theo Walcott can’t cross. Look at Wayne Rooney’s body language after another cross by Theo goes nowhere. You can tell Rooney doesn’t rate him.

5) James Milner is over-hyped and out of his depth when it comes to England.

Keep It Arsenal


Inter the Future

– The match between Arsenal and Manchester City has been unanimously called dull. Everybody is right. The only thing to take from the match was Robin van Persie’s tackle on Adebayor. The less said about the match the better.

– I don’t know why Manchester City are being allowed to bring in Fulop on emergency loan. Their reserve keeper was fielded against us. Could they not use a reserve goalkeeper to back up Gunnar Nielsen? I don’t get it.

– Who do we want to finish 4th? Truly a nightmare scenario. Do we actually want Sp*rs to finish 4th? Possibly so, if it means keeping Manchester City down. If Manchester City gets Champions League football, they’ll find it easier to sign world class players. They’ll sign good players regardless, but it would be a big step forward for them. If Sp*rs get 4th, it’ll be terrible for us, but imagine the humiliation when they’re knocked out by the champions of Czech Republic. Maybe we want Aston Villa to sneak it, knowing how mediocre a manager O’Neill is. We definitely do not want Liverpool to somehow get 4th, because that would mean they would have beaten Chelsea, and if that’s the case, Manchester United will have won the Premier League. That’s a true nightmare.

– Everybody assumed Inter Milan would be put to the sword by Messi. I knew better. If I’m being honest, we made Barcelona look great. Mourinho would do no such thing. And in the end, his plan was simple. Field two holding midfielders, use Sneijder to provide creativity through the middle, deploy quick wingers to make runs between the full-backs and centre-backs, and rely on the solid defense (with the inspirational Lucio as a pivot point). Furthermore, they kept the pitch dry. Can they hold on against to their lead? Barcelona may score two goals, but I think Inter will also score once. That means Barcelona need to score three or four to win the tie. Messi’s “ascension” to immortality continues here.

– You may not like him, but Jose Mourinho is a winner. He’s proven that beyond a shadow of a doubt. If he successfully prevents Barcelona from defending the Champions League at the Bernabeu, he’ll be the Real Madrid manager next year. Guaranteed.

– Following Inter’s blueprint, could we have done the same against Barcelona if we were fully fit? I think we could have, but I still don’t think we would have played that way against Barcelona. Wenger wants to outplay Barcelona, and to get there, we’re going to need to improve a lot.

– It was nice to hear George Boateng condemn Phil Brown for his embarrassing halftime pitch talk way back. English people wrote it off, but that is the kind of thing a megalomanic does. Humiliating your players often leads you nowhere. That’s why Almunia has a “wrist injury,” even though it’s plainly obvious he does not.

– Tony Pulis is furious that information about a fight between the players was leaked out to the public. He’s apparently preparing to ship out ten of the players. A harmonious ship, huh? I can hear him already, “we’re not that kind of team.” Sure.

– I hope Liverpool fields a team of reserves against Chelsea. I would love to see the look on Alex Ferguson’s face when he reads that Damien Plessis is playing instead of Gerrard. That won’t happen though. Regardless, you have to give some credit to Chelsea. They’ve scored an insane amount of goals and have had three games where they’ve scored seven goals. They don’t have much of a style, but they bang them in. You can’t ignore 93 goals in 36 games.

– Check out this goal by Sergio Canales. Stunning. I wish we signed him, but he’s off to Madrid. Bastards.

– To close with a quote by Wenger. “For a while, we were not investing maybe because we had built the stadium, but I think our financial situation is now becoming much stronger and we will be capable to buy the players we need to buy.” There are a few things to point out here. One, it reveals that Wenger was handcuffed by the stadium. Did he complain? No. Did fans still asked for his head. Two, he used the word “need”, which indicates that he sees clear areas that need to be improved. Last, it shows that Wenger understands that next year will be crucial to this team’s development. Another trophyless season will be a big problem, and he knows it. I would love to fast forward a few months and have next season start now. But first, let’s enjoy the Champions League and the World Cup.

Win It For Ramsey

Before I begin my post, I would like to address something.

There are three writers for this site. We all bring different points of views, but we work as a team. On Saturday, we witnessed yet another one of our players suffer a serious injury. That event caused one of our colleagues to write an inflammatory post about Stoke and their manager yesterday. While it was written out of pure anger, that doesn’t excuse it. We try to present a level-headed view (but undoubtedly pro-Arsenal in the end, after all this is a site primarily about Arsenal Football Club), and the aforementioned post was nothing of the sort. We deeply apologize if we’ve offended anybody. This site is not meant to offend groups of fans; it’s meant to observe the football world with an Arsenal pair of eyes. It won’t happen again.

Now, moving on.

After letting my initial rage about the tackle die down for a couple of days, it’s given me time to reflect on the actual challenge and the game itself. Many Arsenal bloggers have gone on about what they think of the tackle. The English media has had their say as well. Stoke City Football Club have had their say as well. The topic has been well covered, but I’d just like to add my two cents.

Ryan Shawcross clearly did not intend to break Aaron Ramsey’s leg, but the tackle was reckless and dangerous. What I cannot excuse is the speed and location of the tackle. You can argue that Ramsey was too quick for him (and he definitely was on this occasion), but why was Shawcross swinging his leg that fast? As a defender, if you have your foot on the ground, there’s pretty much no chance that you can break another opponent’s leg. Being committed is one thing, but I believe the tackle was deserving of a red card and was dangerous. I’ve read many pundits and people talk about how if Ramsey wasn’t injured, it would have only been a yellow card. But that’s not the objective reality.

I can’t lame the blame solely on Shawcross and Stoke on this. Challenges like Shawcross’s are born out of bad parenting. And in this case, the bad parents are the English media and the Premier League’s referees.

The agenda of the English media is clear. They want to promote the English game as one of passion where full bloodied challenges are welcome. When injuries like Ramsey’s occur, instead of examining the state of tackling in games, there are built in excuses. Phrases like “he was too quick for him” and “he’s not that type of player” are instantly brought up. Well, when Eduardo won a penalty against Celtic, perhaps Wenger should merely have said “he’s not that type of player.” The furore over Eduardo’s “dive” was longer than this furore over Shawcross’s challenge will be.

I do not want to lynch Shawcross, but to the majority of Arsenal fans, he will primarily be known as the man who shattered Aaron Ramsey’s leg. To that end, perhaps Shawcross will have difficulties coming back and performing as he did (look at Martin Taylor’s career). For all the rough challenges Arsenal encountered against Stoke, will it ever be to that level ever again? My guess is probably not. That’s the fallout.

The English media will have you believe that these types of tackles and the flow of the game is what makes the English league special. I think the speed is a big part of it’s charm nowadays, but it’s only since the infusion of foreign talent (and managers) that the league has really thrived. It’s no surprise that England’s national team is better than ever, playing against such opposition can only help. Where once there was only an emphasis on passion, now technique is just as important. While holding on to the past, the English media was actually damaging it’s future. When the rest of the world views Shawcross’s challenge on Ramsey, they’ll be horrified. Simply put, it doesn’t belong in the game. When a man accidentally murders somebody, that’s not a first degree murder, but it is manslaughter.

Shawcross should feel terrible about the incident. And for those who think that Wenger should apologize for his comments on Saturday, perhaps Shawcross should also apologize to Aaron Ramsey. From what I’ve read, all he’s said is that there was no malice in the challenge and that he wishes a speedy recovery. An apology would be welcome, but I suppose it’s not necessary.

Premier League referees don’t seem to have a control on a lot of these games. It is the lack of cautioning and fouls that allow a team like Stoke to believe they have a right to play in the manner that they do. If they’re allowed to do that, why wouldn’t they? They have an obligation to fight for every point, and that is what they generally do. It’s been pointed out that Arsenal are the second most fouled team in the league behind Hull City. That indicates that we don’t get as many foul calls as we should, because most will agree that Arsenal are roughed up more than others.

The protection is sorely lacking.

We’ve seen three players in four and a half years suffer major injuries. That kind of trauma is enough to make any supporter enraged. And if a supporter is enraged, how do you think the players on Arsenal and Arsene Wenger feel about it? That’s the bottom line.

This incident has revealed how one-sided football fans can be. That goes for both Stoke and Arsenal in this case. I read an ESPN correspondent
talk about how he was sickened that Arsenal players were asking for a red card instead of tending to Ramsey. That’s just a load of horseshit. Clearly, Cesc and Vermaelen were extremely upset at what happened. Arsenal fans, out of rage, have said some unpleasant things as well.

The real tragedy is that Aaron Ramsey is going to be out for over five months because of this challenge. Even Tony Pulis, who is Welsh himself, would never wish that on a player. But the aggression against Arsenal is not a surprise when we’re going away up north. That is what we’ve come to expect, and that is what we have to learn to deal with.

And on to the football side of things, people say that the result pales in light of Ramsey’s injury. That is undoubtedly true, but it’s still very important. If I were Aaron Ramsey, I would not want my teammates to just roll over and die. I would want my teammates to fight. To stand up and represent as athletes. That was done on Saturday.

Two years ago, we lost Eduardo to a horrific injury. What’s often noted about that game is our meltdown, what’s not noted is that we came back from one goal down to take a one goal lead. Had we held on, we would have won the Premier League, I’m certain of it. But such a psychological blow of giving away a dubious penalty destroyed our title ambitions. This time around, it was different.

After about five minutes of no football at all from both sides, we struck back. We won a penalty when Stoke handled it. I don’t know how people can claim that this wasn’t a penalty. When William Gallas gave away a penalty against Manchester United two years ago, he was accosted for making a massive error. Had that decision not been given, we may have even won the Premier League. But when you leave your arms like that in the penalty box, you run that risk.

After Vermaelen tapped in the third goal, I saw a passion in this squad that I haven’t seen for quite sometime.

Wenger likes to go on about how we play football the way it’s supposed to be. He decries physical attacks on players, but our players have recently learned to show the opposition that they’re here to play. Nasri shoved a Stoke player after they were haranguing Cesc. Near the end of the match, Cesc tackled Pugh simply to send a message. Then Cesc motioned to Pulis to shush his mouth. An act of impetuousness? Perhaps, but that’s what I’d like to see. And for the record, it wasn’t a reckless challenge; Cesc was never going to hurt anybody with that, he was just letting Stoke know that we will not be pushed around. That tackle is in marked contrast to what Robin van Persie did last year, when out of frustration he needlessly shoulder charged Thomas Sorensen and was sent off.

Ironically, the team most capable of absorbing a mental blow like Ramsey’s is Arsenal. We’ve seen it twice already, and what doomed us the last time cannot destroy us this time around. I believe the war at the Britannia has prepared our team to chase the title like never before. Believe me when I tell you that this is the make or break moment for Arsene’s latest experiment.

I actually relish playing against teams like Stoke. They work hard to frustrate us, and I view it as a test of how far a team has come. To win the Premier League, you must beat sides like Stoke both home and away. While we lost to them in the cup, we have gotten the six points we wanted.

Are our players ready? Saturday shows that we are.

While he is in street clothes, we must win it for Aaron Ramsey.

Stoke Job

If we earn three points against Stoke at the Britannia tomorrow, people will begin to talk about us seriously again as title contenders.

More importantly, the boost it’ll give our squad will be enormous. Having failed to beat them twice at the Britannia in two years, the players will be up for it more than ever.

While we do have key players out (Arshavin, Gallas, and Diaby), we do possess the players needed to pull through tomorrow.

The strength will not come from power, as being deprived of Diaby means that our midfield with be lightweight compared to Stoke. That means we have to pass through their team. No silly passes going astray, we must hold possession and ensure that Stoke do not strike first.

In the FA Cup match against them, Fabianski’s hesitancy led to a goal. Once behind, we did actually equalize, but got drilled in the final moments when Wenger brought on our heavy hitters.

To beat Stoke, we need to be first to every 50-50 ball and defend set pieces incredibly well. To that end, this is how you beat Rory Delap’s throw-ins. The most important player is the goalkeeper, as he has a weapon that can counter Delap’s throw-in. That weapon is the ability to catch the ball in the field of play.

We cannot ask Almunia to change his style of play though, so it’s going to require punch outs that go past our penalty box. In addition, Bendtner’s height, along with Sol, will help a ton.

With Walcott possibly starting, we need to pump balls through the right channel and let Theo do what he does best, beat men with his pace. Eboue may also be an option, as his directness has been a positive force the last few weeks.

We need Cesc to dictate play.

Tomorrow probably will not be a lovely display of football, but if we do what we’re capable of doing, the critics will take notice and our players will start to see what Wenger sees.

It’s a big, big, big fixture.

Time To Stand Tall

If Arsenal beat Stoke City on Saturday, they will win the Premier League. Defeat, however, rules Arsenal out, while a draw only gives slim hope.

Stoke City away is a horrible fixture. It’s average footballers using thug tactics, long throws, long balls, aerial bombardment and defensive discipline to the max. If Arsenal are to win, they have stand tall, be hard, play ugly and prepare for war. Winning doesn’t have to be pretty.
There’s two misnomers about Stoke City. The first is that they play football. They don’t. Not when you have Rory Delap taking five minutes to take a 25 yard throw in – after he has wiped it with a towel – and not when you have thugs like Danny Higginbotham kicking, elbowing, and stamping anything in his way. If Stoke play football, then my penis plays the violin.

The second misnomer is that Stoke is an actual city. It’s not. It’s just six shit towns full of white trash or Chavs who hate the smaller Indian/Pakistani community. It’s the reason why the fascist British National Party held a rally last month in Stoke, protesting against the rising Muslim community.

So what does Stoke have to offer other than a wide selection of sports shops and pound stores? It has the low grade shopping mall in the cesspit town of Hanley called “The Potteries Center.” This where most of the Stoke Chavs hang out in a show of defiance against authorities and the growing asylum seeker population. They lurk around menacingly, with their white Reebok Classics and hooded tops like a verminous disease, creating a shopping experience of loathing.

Hanley at night is another story though. It turns into an STD fest with teenage Chavs lingering around dimly lit bus shelters dropping cigarette butts on the floor and drinking cheap strong cans of Special Brew or Thunderbirds. There are some bars, just like there’s corners in Skid Row that people seek for entertainment. Outside the most popular bar/nightclubs are lines of pasty white Chav’s, with women wearing next to nothing because they can’t afford to put their coat into a cloakroom. Some wear nothing more than a skirt in sub zero temperatures because they feel that flashing a bit of tit and thigh is their way gaining entry with the bouncers. These are bars that seem to be blissfully unaware of things like age restrictions or fire regulations.

Inside the bars is more scary. You will find, loud shite R&B disguised as techno with drunk Chavs practicing their moves for their wishful audition on American Idol or Britain’s Got Talent. And the female talent on show is just like Stoke’s football – it’s horrible – consisting Susan Boyle’s in their early 20’s with peroxide blonde hair.

On game day, the Britannia Stadium is just as bad. It consists of white men of all ages drinking as much Stella as possible and then singing the Stoke national anthem of the Tom Jones hit “Why, Why, Delilah?” at the top of their voices. Before the game most of these white drunk scum then abuse one of the following: a) away fans especially southern fans; b) non-white people; c) the police; d) the referee and his officials.

After the game, most Stoke fans continue their drinking in the pubs near to the stadium. They continue singing their rendition of “Delilah” but some are by now puking up in the street or the bathrooms. Others are hitting on the pasty white, overweight tarts who love to wear big cheap gold rings with their initials on them as well as big hoop earrings that look like curtain holders.

Stoke is hole and needs to go. The same goes for it’s horrible football team.

Keep It Arsenal

Toilet Paper

If you’re a true betting man, you need to do all kinds of research before you place a bet. Most people will go the extra mile, then make a decision with their gut anyway. I find it impossible to bet actual money on the Arsenal though, because it’s harder to overrule my heart.

Looking at Manchester United’s defeat against Everton, you can note easily that they were traveling from Milan and playing Everton at Goodison Park. Everton played a Europa League fixture, but one day earlier. This late into the season, things like these matter. It’s not to say that United couldn’t have broken through, but there is a distinct advantage held by a team like Everton. Everton did extremely well to break through against United (and getting one over their old mate Rooney), and it’s no surprise that against the top three teams in the reverse fixtures, Everton has earned 7 out of 9 points. They’re a good side.

Now, look at our fixture against Stoke. This is what counts against us:

1) We have a lot of injuries.

2) Stoke have already defeated us at the Britannia, albeit against a weakened side.

3) We’ve never defeated Stoke away.

4) At the Britannia, Rory Delap seemingly has never-ending access to towels in order to dry off the ball before throwing it into the box.

5) Stoke get away with certain things merely because of their reputation. Once you’re labeled as a tough, hard-working team, the line between a foul and a yellow card is sometimes blurred. Credit to them that they can take advantage of that.

But here’s what works in our favor.

On Wednesday, Stoke plays Manchester City at the Britannia in the FA Cup replay. That match may have the potential to go into extra time as well. Stoke will absolutely attempt to go all out and win this match. Consequently, due to this replay, I believe Faye will be able to suit up against us and he plays a big part in Stoke’s contain and batter strategy. Regardless, they will feel more fatigue than us on Saturday. That’s a clear fact, whether you let your mind believe it or not.

For that reason, time is ripe to place a stamp on this season.

You’d rather not have to analyze the physical evidence like a bookie, but sometimes it helps to gauge what kind of game we’ll be in for. It’s the same reason managers cite international fixtures as momentum disruptors.

I hope the game between Stoke and City go to extra time, and that Stoke are knocked out on penalties. From an Arsenal perspective, that’ll do nicely.

And one last thing, Ricardo Fuller deserved to get a retrospective red card for his foul on Jamie O’Hara this past weekend, where O’Hara’s shorts were torn after Fuller drag his boot around his groin area. But hey, that’s Stoke. They’re hard working battlers. Everything they do is within the rules.

That’s what toilet paper is good for, wiping the shit from your ass.

Stoke – The Octomom of Football

The first decade of the 21st Century brought us the Bush Administration, the horrific 9/11 attacks, the anthrax scare, Hurricane Katrina, the stock market collapse, and the protracted and painful Iraq and Afghanistan wars – as well as a debilitating two-year recession and high unemployment.

But the first decade of the 21st Century gave us something a lot worse than the above events. It gave EPL fans Stoke City – one of the most disgusting teams to play in the Premiership since the days of Wimbledon.

If Stoke City were a porno, it would star the Octomom giving birth to eight kids and then having sex with a Rory Delap throw-in.

When Stoke City were drawn against Arsenal, they must have punched the air with delight. They love to try and beat a team that plays passing, flowing football with their own style of boots, kicks, flicks, tackles, corners, lofted balls, and headers.

Stoke score goals in the same way that thugs get into a club: by kicking down the back door, rushing through like a pack of animals, and knocking over the bouncer or anyone else who gets in their way.

Who gives a fuck how you get into the club as long as you get in!

Arsenal have never beaten Stoke or even got a draw against them at The Britannia Stadium. On February 27th, Arsenal will need to get three points at Stoke. Every team that wants to be a champion has to play against horrible teams and in horrible weather conditions. Stoke are that team – the new Bolton.

Aston Villa on Wednesday. Not an easy game, especially away. But there is some good news. We will have players back for that game. And by Sunday we should have Diaby, Song, Eboue, and Bendtner back.

What we need is a new goalkeeper. Fabianski is a joke. We now know why Almunia is first choice.

Look at Stoke’s first goal: The ball is thrown in, it arrives in the 6 yard box at chest height, yet Fabianski allows Fuller to beat him to the ball. It was disgusting! I wake up at 5:30 am and drive to Denver to watch a game that kicks-off at 6:30 am. At 6:32 am Arsenal are a goal down and I’m contemplating drinking drain fluid. Fabianski needs to realize how big Arsenal are globally, because I know that there’s a bunch of Gooners in California who watched the game an hour earlier than me.

Wenger needs to sign goalkeeper and fast because we have Laurel and Hardy sharing the No.1 jersey and for a club like Arsenal that’s not a enough. It’s like having the Octomom in charge of health care.

Keep It Arsenal

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