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The malaise has left Arsenal and hit Milan

Arsenal was once the capital of whining, whinging, moaning, and general complaining of an “its a total disaster” type.

Supposed fans would moan about Wenger, his lack of signings, his tactics, the silence of the ground, the lack of passion on the pitch, not winning anything for 2,102,453 seconds, the slowness of Dixon, the misses of Bendtner, Arshavin’s lack of height, Eboue’s Eboueness, the cost of beer, the extra distance to the ground now you have to turn right out of Arsenal station instead of left, and those bloody steps over the railway line.

This would be backed up by stories of Robin leaving, Ade leaving, the groundsman leaving, the guy who switches on the fat fryer for the fish and chips leaving, and the fact that Sammy Nelson isn’t that good any more.

But now…

All the anti-Arsenal commentary has gone! Vanished! Stolen!

Stolen by those evil conniving semi-beings who support other clubs. Look at these examples:

WC Milan: Not satisfied with taking Flamini and Senderos last season and having signed an American on a free from Standard Liège as their main step forward this year, the fans have taken to disrupting the training sessions of the club. In fact you might expect that the Ultras would be delighted to have flogged Ancelotti to Chelsea (having taken them to 5th the season before last and had the ignominy of playing in the squiddly cup and getting knocked out.

But no! They show their grief, their anger, and their frustration. Mind you having lost the Great Maldini (he was wonderful you must admit) and Kaka, Milan have become the footballing equivalent of Mark Knopfler after he left Dire Straits. One great song and a load of dross in which Deptford boy tries to be Irish.

But WC Milan are not getting the moaning crown all to themselves. Because there is also…

Manchester Arab: Moaning is normal in Manchester, but even they have upped the volume as they have been made to look a laughing stock by offering to buy everyone (including John Terry in the mistaken belief that he is a box of chocolates) and getting only the middle rankers. Where’s Kaka and the rest? Oh, they didn’t want to come. Why not? What’s wrong with Manchester (don’t answer that!)

Real Mad: they have just refused to pay £35m for Alonso on the grounds that they have run out of cotton and nylon to make any more shirts. Major complaining has started.

Liverpool Insolvency have now just about moved into insolvency, and the SOS group are getting very edgy. That letter from Nat West didn’t go down very well either. Of course it is hard to tell when a Liverpool person is moaning because that is what they do, but those in the know say that moaning has reached 8.7 on the Moaning scale and that is dangerous.

Newcastle Zebras players are revolting (well we knew that) and so are the fans (ditto). (Actually I can’t carry on this bit, because I don’t know what sound a zebra makes. Does it make a noise like a horse? Anyone know?)

Benitez joined the serial arrestees Birmingham City only it was the wrong Benitez – so major complaints there. They are also trying to sign our Patrick, but he has objected to lying down on the ground as if injured as a central tactic when defending. The talk is that they are going to go straight down again. Moan, moan, moan. Why can’t we be like Bolton, says the locals. Well, yes.

The goalkeeper of Sheffield United has been caught eating cough mixture and the fans there are complaining that they can’t find any shops that sell stuff that good.

Two Middlesbrough players failed to turn up for pre-season training on the grounds that they told their taxi drivers to “take us to the coast” and they ended up in Frinton. The fans complain that the rest of the squad did turn up.

Manchester IOU having signed Michelle Owen on a free has signed Michael Jackson on the grounds that, well he was also available on a free. Everyone moans – so no change there.

KGB in Fulham – 43 managers in the past 20 minutes. However the Party Officials have made it known that complaining is not an acceptable form of behaviour and everyone who indulges in it will be sent to the labour camps run by that guy who cuts the grass after each game.

Indeed the situation is now so bad that the Fiver column in the Guardianian has been running a STOP FOOTBALL campaign, and they invited all those intellectual what-nots who read it, to write in to explain why football should be stopped. I repeat here just one such answer

“STOP FOOTBALL so that Phil Brown’s career ends abruptly and he is faced with two career options for which he looks the part: gynaecologist or circus ringmaster” – Jonathan Armstrong.

Right on mate. The light at the end of the tunnel is the Express Train traveling in the opposite direction.

(Knopfler’s one great post-Dire song was “This is us”, but you knew that anyway, didn’t you.)

(c) Tony Attwood 2009

Read it here and then read it on Team Talk.

25 comments to The malaise has left Arsenal and hit Milan

  • LRV

    Hurrah! Say it like it is, Tony. Now we will just wait to see which of them becomes the WWMC champion. Isn’t it great?

  • Terence McGovern

    LMAO! I will have the image of Phil Brown in a red coat and top hat in my mind for days! As for Mark Knoph if he wants to be Irish I must say that no greater or more noble quest in life could any man take on lolololol!

  • jamshed

    This quote from football365.com neatly sums it up :–

    If standing still is this summer’s improving then Arsenal have taken a big step forward this morning with the official confirmation that Robin van Persie has finally signed a new contract

  • LRV

    Tony, I was a tad sad to read somewhere that Valencia are seriously struggling financialy. The suggestion that they are almost on their last leg, after making huge losses, is even sadder. Their supporters must be very loud in the WWMC department.

    Sorry to digress. Could you possibly do a piece on ‘Arsenal Worst Season(s) Ever’? I suspect that will remind us, Arsenal fans, how far our Club has come.

  • walter

    Tony, I can not allow it and I will not allow anyone to say one bad word of my all time hero… Mark Knopfler. You’ve lost a few good points there 😉 .

  • walter

    Sorry but my laptop went crazy (happens sometimes when then name MK is mentioned) and my post went a bit quick on the site.
    I think I got almost the every album startin from his Dire Straits periode until the Kill to get Krimson and ….. I just love it. Really can’t help it. But for me trying to be Irish doesn’t mean anything. Love the way he handles his guitar and love the way he talks (dont call it singing) to me.
    BTW his greatest song ever for me was “Brother in arms”. I still get goose bumps when I here it. I can listen to it on my cdplayer for hours.
    Cant wait for his next tour to come to Belgium or Holland. I’ll be there.
    On the Brothers in arms song: I even made a special version of it and called it “Gooners in arms”.

  • Marc

    You would have thought that the Spud’s would be moaning given thier lack of signings. They can’t even get the players they don’t want probably due to the fact that if they sell them for thier correct market value they will be a laughing stock.

    Can they actually be any more of a laughing stock?

  • Marc – utterly brilliant.

    They can’t even get the players they don’t want

    Do you remember Hoddle used to tell us that they nearly got x and they nearly got y. Wouldn’t it be funny if Arry ended up like that.

    Tony

  • Ateeb

    Keep it up Tony. Great blog.

  • Chrissie

    Tony,
    You surpassed yourself today, just have this image in my mind of John Terry’s face on a box of chocolates, not pretty.
    Just one thing though, Tony, you can’t possibly say anything bad about Mark Knopfler. “Heart of gold” and “Sailing to Philadelphia” were superb. Only saw Dire Straits once at the BIC in Bournemouth. Fantastic, what a memory.
    Message to Walter, please give us the lyrics of your Gooners in arms.

  • walter

    Chrissie,

    I’ve just mailed my lyrics to Tony. I dont know if he think it’s good enough.
    But if he does, he can feel free to put it on his or he can give me permission to do so.
    After all it’s his blog and his site and I don’t want to “run before his feet” as they say in Dutch. I don’t know if the “translation” means anything in English.
    But I’m off now for a few days on a short holiday with my wife and kids, maybe we’ll see afterwards.

  • jamshed

    AS as expected the usmanov offer was turned down. It is difficult to interpret just what is going on. Kroenke is slowley increasing his stake, and kroenke always moves slowley. I think it is clear that Kroenke is is the boards prefered choice at the right time, when ever that may be.Some moves are being made to strengthen the side, and i would think some old fashioned “horse trading” is going on. Adebayor going one way, and flamani coming back, a possibility. Good points, he knows the play, is good friends with fabragas, and would help to keep him grounded, not such good points, has he lost his edge sitting on the bench, and is not as good as he perhaps thinks he is, though on the whole, more plusses than against.I just don’t what will happen or who we will get.But at least a start has been made, and if we can 2 or more quality experienced players it could well intigrate nicely with the team building and we may just have a team for next season. I know we have lost melo, but have always had some concern about his record of red cards and yellow cards. I could see him having been a target both for other players and referees next season, so perhaps to lose him was not a bad thing.the next few weeks will be interesting, most deals are left to the last minute, but having turned down the russians money i want our proposed deals to be settled early, NOW, if our faith in the club is to be rewarded

  • jamshed

    If we keep the current squad do things really look that bad?

    Following scenario is based on a 4-3-3.

    Players in brackets are back-up/replacement players. I know a few of them are duds (Silvestre) but the point i’m making is that there are options.

    The only glaring omission is someone strong to partner Cesc, but even then Denilson, and yes even Diaby, will continue to improve.

    Almunia
    (Fabianaski)

    Sagna Toure Vermaelen Clichy
    (Eboue) (Gallas) (Senderos) (Gibbs)
    (Silvestre) (Song) (Djourou)

    Rosicky Fabregas Nasri
    (Wilshere) (Diaby) (Denilson)
    (Ramsey)

    Arshavin Adebayor Van Persie
    (Walcott) (Bendtner) (Eduardo)

  • jamshed

    I came across this load of bile from goal.com…seems they have nothing better to do…

    English Angle: No Felipe Melo, No Ambition & No Chance Of Arsene Wenger Making Arsenal Great Again
    The Gunners have lost yet another potentially perfect signing, as Goal.com’s Sulmaan Ahmad wonders whether Wenger’s philosophy is enough anymore…

    In an age in which football – like every other sport – is having its course dictated by commercial business, you can only admire a man of pure intentions and principles.

    Arsene Wenger has made it abundantly clear he is against big business ‘corrupting’ football, and is more concerned with maintaining a stable, recession-proof economic policy. Playing it safe. Slow and steady wins the race.

    The only problem is, you only tell the Tortoise and the Hare story to children, Aesop has been dead for over 2000 years and the only race slow and steady wins is one to a Europa League place – at best.

    Zinedine Zidane didn’t become the greatest footballer of modern times by being particularly industrious or hard-working, Axel Foley wasn’t the best detective on Beverly Hills Cop because he followed the letter of the law and Bill Gates didn’t become the wealthiest man on the planet by building the Microsoft dynasty on a shoestring budget.

    Fans just want their team to win, maybe not at all costs, but Arsene Wenger seems to think he can do it at next to no cost whatsoever and he can’t. The uncensored, insensitive reality of the football world is that is that €10 million is nothing. And so is Thomas Vermaelen.

    Wenger assured fans at the Emirates – as the season reached its predictable, trophyless end – that experience would be signed in key positions this summer. At 23, Vermaelen has just over 20 caps for the Belgian national side and has come through the worst Ajax team for the last three to four decades.

    Arsene has an eye for talent better than most, and there is nothing to say that Vermaelen, who has had ringing endorsements from the likes of Jaap Stam, couldn’t develop into a class player. But there’s that word again: development.

    The fans, above all else, have become restless with the club’s status as surrogates for French, African and French-African talents who either don’t quite make the top grade, or do so and promptly head to a club where they have something of an assurance that they can line up alongside more players of proven quality and compete for major silverware.

    Principles, after all, are relative – with many heavily criticising Wenger’s policy of poaching many of ‘his’ best youth talents – while success is indisputably universal. The lack of balance in Wenger’s philosophy and inability to adapt to compete in the age of Abramovich is disconcerting; but he is a man of such intelligence, you would be naive to suggest he doesn’t realise the shortcomings of his transfer strategy.

    And that is why there is growing belief that the pennysaver signings are nothing more than a fail-safe, to hide behind the guise of financial responsibility and youth development as an excuse for any potential failure, while snatching the likes of Gareth Barry or Xabi Alonso would put the onus squarely on the manager to deliver success.

    Believe what you will, but don’t believe it’s unfair, don’t believe there is no money and don’t believe that Arsenal’s decline from magical to a little mediocre is anyone’s fault but the club’s.

    Having already given up on the likes of Gokhan Inler off the back of his impressive Euro 2008 showing, Wenger was presented with a chance to snap up Felipe Melo from Fiorentina. Fresh from Spanish outfit Almeria, in his debut Serie A season, the Brazilian was quite possibly the best midfielder in the league, a driving force behind the club qualifying for the Champions League for successive years for the first time in its history and now a regular with the Brazil national side, one of their star performers en route to Confederations Cup glory last month.

    Arsenal reportedly put up just €14m for the combative Brazilian and were laughed off. Juventus are now on the verge of signing him for a fee in the region of €20-25m. Steep, yes, but such is the price of a player just one year into his contract and in such red-hot form. Bear in mind, this is not even a Juve under Luciano Moggi and coached by Fabio Capello or Marcello Lippi. This is a Juve ravaged by the Calciopoli scandal and putting money they don’t even have into players they know they absolutely require.

    Take Arsenal’s €14m offer, take the €10m spent on Vermaelen, and tell me what you have. You have more than enough money to buy the perfect partner for Cesc Fabregas, which would immeasurably help him improve on his ponderous and unimpressive last season at the Emirates and flourish as the world class talent that he is before inevitably jetting back to Barcelona. It would restore Arsenal’s strength in central midfield; the hub of any great football side, as demonstrated by Andres Iniesta and Xavi, Andrea Pirlo and Rino Gattuso or even Paul Scholes and Roy Keane.

    Invariably, Arsene will now revert to type. His initial target, the Vermaelen-like Stephane Sessegnon of Paris-Saint Germain, has just renewed with the French capital club, but instead sights are now set on Blaise Matuidi at Saint-Etienne. While it can be condescending to constantly assume it takes a name to make a player, Arsenal’s recent track record suggests enough no-names will inevitably lead to a no-team.

    For a man who coaches his players with such passion and belief to take risks and go out to win, it is nothing short of a shame for football that he cannot take that same mentality into the boardroom. There is a reason Real Madrid head-hunted the Frenchman this summer. It wasn’t the first time and may not even be the last, as he is a man universally recognised as embracing a special brand of football and nurturing of top talent.

    But just as Barcelona won’t produce a Fabregas, Iniesta, Messi and Pique as part of one generation every time, nor can Arsene realistically expect to snatch them up from other clubs, let alone produce four or five more Jack Wilsheres. Not Kieran Gibbs’ or even Jay Simpsons, but Jack Wilsheres. There is a difference – let’s stop acting like we don’t know it.

    The likes of Dennis Bergkamp, Thierry Henry and Patrick Vieira – astonishingly rejected by Serie A during its golden age – would not come cheaply in today’s equivalent market and, perhaps Vieira excluded, they weren’t exactly cheap then, either.

    The 59-year-old may yet surprise us all and sign a player of immense experience in Mahamadou Diarra – a French-speaking African, just as he likes them – and having just turned 28, won four Ligue 1 titles with Lyon and two Primera Divisions with Real Madrid, will most likely be available for a fee in the region of €15m as Madrid clear-out as part of the Galacticos revolution. But if it’s a straight shootout between he and 22-year-old, €7-10m Matuidi – where would you place your bet?

    Signing two good players instead of one great talent will never beget success at the highest level. Rafa Benitez makes a better fist of it by playing a much less attractive brand of football and having spent big on the right players a couple of times – two options Wenger seems unwilling to consider.

    Competing with Man City in the long-term is perhaps an unreasonable expectation, but at this rate – having already been callously removed from a big four now referred to as a ‘big three’ by many – they will be fighting all the way for their fourth place once again this coming season, out of depth to compete for either of the two top honours of the season.

    It has never been as simple as spending and winning, but Wenger’s overcomplicating of every movement in the transfer market is tarnishing his legacy in north London, even when taking into account how he took them from relative mediocrity to where they have since been and still are now.

    The last straw could end up being anything from failure to qualify for the Champions League, finally finishing below Spurs in a league season or even Wenger leaving for the likes of Madrid – but what is at this point a guarantee for the chief proprietor of beautiful football is that, at this rate, it will be very, very ugly.

  • shotta-gunna

    Tony and posters – You crack me up with your tales although occassionally there are some peculiar bits of English pop culture I just don’t get. I wish I could agree with Tony that the moaners have left the building but I think it is a bit premature. It is pre-season and supporters are usually most optimistic at this stage of the year. As evidenced by Mr JAMSHED wild delusional thinking is still abroad.

  • Jamshed – there is no news about Rosiky’s injury here at all. If you have read the article you are quoting you will see that it is simply a patch together of old news. There is no injury. There is no news.

    Rosicky, as we all know, came back from injury and declared himself fit last season, but was not played. That story about Wenger not consulting” came out last season and we have no idea if it is true or not, although it is true that no manager will ever consult with his players about who he plays.

    There is no new injury, there is no story. It is another hoax, and a very obvious one.

    Now I think you have been a very naughty boy (or girl) Jamshed, in putting this in as if there is a rumour or story here. If you do it again I shall have to deal with you very seriously.

  • jamshed

    whoops sorry the mail caught me out 😉

  • irishblood

    Arsenal with this “great” squad challenging for the title ? Don’t make me laugh they won’t challenge for anything except a UEFA cup place next season. Arsene Wenger with his vision of self sustainability has doomed this club to being also rans. We finished eighteen points behind last season and does this man think that Vermaelin of whom no one had heard of before we signed him will give us what we need ? The enemy of the fans here is not Usmanov – he is the only one at the club who actually wants to do something to help (Kroenke says and does nothing other than take money from the fans) – but the brainless idiots on this site want to keep Arsenal “traditional” at the cost of the only thing that really matters in professional football which is winning trophies. Arsenal are more concerned with keeping the bank manager happy than winning football matches and for that reason they won’t win a damn thing next season – they are just a second rate club.

  • Adam Smith

    Tony,

    slightly off topic.Have you heard that Kroenke has been issued the shares he bought a few months ago from members of lady Nina’s family,but hasn’t actually payed for them.
    I can’t provide a link I am afraid,but I remember reading it only a couple of days ago in one of the newspapers,maybe The Guardian or The Times.

    PS : irishblood if you refer to us being brainless idiots on this site,why bother posting ?

  • irishblood

    simple….because there are some decent posts on here.

  • I haven’t heard about the share transfer, and I am not much of a one for shares outside my own company. But I think if you buy or sell shares in a traded company then there are strict Stock Exchange rules about the settling up day. Isn’t it the case that the year is divided into periods of 2 or 3 weeks, and all the trades in that period have to be paid for on the settlement day?

    Sorry not quite sure – that side of things is beyond my normal world of operations

  • Faron

    Irishblood, If you had never heard of Thomas Vermaelin, then you proberbly never heard of a team called Leeds. They used to be in the Premiership once, Until they started spending lots of money they never had.

  • Terence McGovern

    Being Irish myself, i am highly offended that a complete retard posts here using the name irisblood. However as we have a plague of manchester united fans in this country,(If Leyton Orient had won 11 premierships they would be Leyton Orient supporters) I assume that he is one of those. He indicates Arsenal as a ‘they’ whilst we true supporters always think in terms of ‘we’
    I am working quite alot at the moment and havent been able to post much which is quite irritating and when I do,I am usually quite tired and bereft of patience. I would love to debate the finer points of this moron’s post but suffice it to say that given the content, it is a wonder that it wasn’t written in crayon.
    See you all soon hopefully.

  • walter

    Maybe we could be looking at AZ in Holland for a moment. The same colors and almost the same outfit.
    Two seasons ago under Louis Van Gaal they had a bad season and they finished 11th. It was a huge dissapointment. Van Gaal stuck to his team and his attacking playing stile. He kept his players, almost didn’t buy anythin and they became champion with a few games to play last season.
    So it is not that when you are not buying big names, that you can not have succes.
    Whe have strenthened our team with Vermaelen and the other teams (like MU) have lost important players.