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Abou Diaby: be strong

By Walter Broeckx

Sometimes there is news that makes you so sad that it feels as if the bad news is about yourself. This is how I felt when I read on arsenal.com that Abou Diaby will be out for at least 8 to 9 months.

The full statement was:

“The Club can confirm that Abou Diaby injured his left knee in training on Wednesday and subsequent scans have confirmed that he has torn his anterior cruciate ligament.

Following consultations with specialists, Abou will undergo surgery to repair the injury in the near future. Abou is expected to be out for around eight to nine months.

The thoughts and best wishes from everyone at Arsenal are with Abou, and we all wish him a successful recovery.”

We all know the injury hit career Diaby has suffered over the last years. It all started with this :

 

This tackle from Dan Smith of Sunderland. If you look at the angle of his leg you can see the impact of this dangerous tackle. Former ref Mal Davies in his article pointed out that such tackles should be banned from football fields. And this is a perfect example on why such tackles should be banned.

Because it not only damaged his ankle at the time. No, the injury at the time was described as a possible career ending injury. The doctors could put him back on his feet. And the long road to recovery started.

But always the same pattern came back. Working hard to become fit again. Playing a few games and after a few games usually he became the immense force we hoped he would be. And then came another injury. And again the same pattern. Working his way back. Playing a few games and then another injury.

I know some will say: we should have got rid of him earlier. I just say RVP. I hope those who say this that now you are glad we finally did get rid of him last summer then.

As I had to stop my own playing career (modest as it was) because of such a tackle and a broken leg, I know what is like a bit. Mind you I didn’t have the character to come back. And the handful of games I played afterwards confirmed that I also never would have been the same player again.

So Diaby was much braver than me (much more talented also) and he tried to fight the injuries. And now this. Another big injury. Another possible career ending injury. And I really fear that it now will be the end for him. Of course I could blame Arsenal and Wenger for still having him. But like I said talking now is easy. Just as RVP he had potential to become world class. RVP overcame his injuries when he was 28 years old. Diaby will probably never be able to do this.

What the club pays him now is not important. Nobody can foresee the future. Just as with RVP. But what is important for me now is the fact that this young man will face probable the end of his professional football career.

Imagine how he must feel right now. I can imagine it a little bit. And I know that there is not only the pain from the injury. But most and for all the pain about maybe never being able to do what you love most: playing football. For him personally this must be a disaster.

And then when you look on the internet you see so called Arsenal “fans” (not supporters) who find it funny. Who make jokes about it. This is something that makes me sick.

I always thought that Arsenal was class. I always thought that Gooners were class. Well it seems that together with a good period with lots of trophies we also attracted a bunch of idiots. A bunch of heartless Neanderthals with no empathy for what one of our own players has to suffer.

A bunch of idiots who really think that Diaby is doing this on purpose. Just the thought alone… how stupid can you be. I don’t want to wish people bad luck but for some it might not be a bad thing to have to go through all what Diaby has had to go through in the last years since that tug Smith broke his ankle and his career.

I feel angry. Not because of his injury or injury record. I feel angry about that thug who did it. I feel angry because of our own supporters making fun of it.

Live can be unfair. I know from a friend of mine who once met Diaby in person while travelling on the shuttle to France after a game that in real life Diaby is a very calm, friendly and well behaved person. He took the time to talk with my friends and was very nice to them.

How sad this is for him. I wish I could offer him some consolation. But I can’t. Apart from hoping that he will recover. I don’t even wish him to play again for Arsenal. I’m not a doctor and I hope it would be possible. But I fear that after this bad injury it might be over for him.

Just imagine how this must feel. I’m sad and sickened in his place.

If the football Gods allow him he will play again. I don’t know if he will ever play a game for Arsenal again. But I do know that if ever there has been a player whose immense potential was kicked to pieces by a person who is a real ******************* it will be him.

I wish you all the best Abou and hope that whatever happens to you in your football career and your personal life that you will find the strength to overcome whatever live is throwing at you. Be strong and keep the faith.

Recent posts…

The books…

The sites from the same team…

 

39 comments to Abou Diaby: be strong

  • eyo

    absolutely heart broken for abou diaby.
    he’ll always be a mighty gunner for me

  • nicky

    Walter,
    Well said. I only hope and pray that there is still a place for Abou at the Emirates, as there is in the hearts of all genuine followers of our great Club.

  • Pat Rice

    Well said Walter, I do feel for the man. My concern is that our beloved manager did not replace Song, if Arteta who is not by a long shot a holding midfielder of any great note,gets injured then we will play Ramsey there, totally out of position and he will get vilified once more. Very unfair on the player. Wenger obviously don’t trust Coq otherwise he would have played him there when Arteta was missing recently. Our manager has left us very short once again. Giroud up front, who would not make the man city man u or chelsea bench and no holding midfieder, very poor management. I have supported Wenger all through and he has until August to invest some money or for me that will be the final straw. The whole world saw Diaby getting injured and lets have it right he had one fantastic game at Liverpool and we didnt see much after.

  • Galway Gooner

    Its tough on Diaby but to be honest I never saw what all the fuss was about. Think he is a pretty average player, the only exceptional think about him is his injury record. When he played I though he was lazy and casual more times than not and I dont think he will be missed at all. I wish him well, hope he recovers from this knock and goes on to play a few games but I just hope it wont be at Arsenal. Even when fit he was never consistent or good enough to be considered anything more than a squad player.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Agree with all this. Not writing him off yet, but he faces a huge battle, one I am sure he will come through one way or another. At the risk of sounding bitter and vengeful, really hope Sunderland go down this season. One of their players did that, there was no apologies from the erm….ex…player or the club. And lets face it, Sunderland are the sort of club who seem to quite like those tactics.

  • Passenal

    Well said Walter. Abou is a good man and it is sad to see such a waste of talent. Those who are currently wishing him ill will get their just desserts soon enough and when they do I hope they get the same level of sympathy and support.

  • Tasos

    Very sad news.

    Diaby arrived at Arsenal with enormous potential. Unfortunately his body has been unable to recover from that horror tackle by Dan Smith.

    Watching him perform against Liverpool at Anfield it looked as though this could finally be his season but fate has once again transpired against the man.

    Its going to be another long road back for Diaby and I fear this may the last we see of him at Arsenal. Mentally it must be extremely difficult for him to accept.

  • Gooner87

    Great piece mate, I regularly visit this site for some positive arsenal news, unfortunately this isn’t positive but a great piece none the less. I always rated diaby but when that thug tackled him I did fear for the player, but at his best he was a good player and well worthy of a starting place. Of course at worse i agree with the above comment he was lazy and casual but that comes with maturity and age and I felt or more hoped abou would become a vieira like box to box midfielder and at times this season it showed, but it seems abou’s luck isn’t that great. A shame as a fully fit and on form diaby is unplayable. Sadly I think that’s it for abou for arsenal but hopefully he can make a recovery and continue playing football in some shape or form.

  • AL

    Moving piece Walter, a great tribute to a real trooper. This guy will bounce back, make no mistake about that. It may not be with Arsenal but he will. Much as I would love to see him realise his full potential at Arsenal, he may be better off in a different league where they don’t sanction such type of football. We all saw what happened a couple of weeks ago at Wigan, and I fear for that young man from Newcastle. The FA didn’t do anything, another thug ruins another player’s promising career while they carry on with theirs. We have seen it all too often, & nothing gets done to outlaw such thuggery from our game. The football authorities are to blame, and so are those in the media for praising sides that employ roughhouse tactics. How many times have we heard Messi isn’t the greatest until he’s tested himself against sides like Stoke. How crazy is that? The message from that ridiculous statement is if he can survive the crunching tackles he will face in the premiership then we can say he’s the greatest. Since when did we start measuring talent with ability to survive illegal tackles? We shouldn’t be seen to be glorifying such thuggery, but sadly we do.

    Players like Eduardo & Ramsey came back but are just pale shadows of the players they were before these horror tackles. My heart goes out to this great warrior, my only consolation is I know he will be back. All the best Abou.

  • byron

    This season showed that the years he missed developing really hurt because of his 20 games most were poor.

    Wenger relied on him and he was wrong to!

    Hope he recovers and has a sterling career but as soon as we can get him off the wage bill we must. His wage to game ratio makes him one of the highest earners in football

  • dan

    he’ll be back, the boys a warrior!

  • A. Stewart

    I’d like to join in this discussion, I made some postings on the other thread that I’d like to take the liberty of copying some snippets here:
    ……………….
    I don’t think anyone or any Arsenal fan should find this funny, however, I don’t expect everyone to be overly sympathetic beyond general concern for anyone who has received an injury.

    For perspective, far worse things have happened and continue to happen to far less wealthy people. Hopefully he recovers, but in the end Diaby will be fine, and has the resources to lead a very comfortable life.

    ……we haven’t struck the balance between fiscal responsibility and competitiveness (i.e. winning) that is well within the reach of our resources/worth, where player matters are concerned. In other words we would rather “gamble” on a player (Diaby) who be it his fault or not contributed precious little, by selling a player (Song in this case) for no reason who contributes lots and ironically was always fit, and selling that player (and many top players before) to imo artificially inflate profits that ultimately contribute to that finanical “worth” especially in recent years.

    Bar its responsibility to rehabilitate any of its employees while still under contract, imo AFC owes Diaby nothing if/when he recovers. This is football, professional football, not a charity. Wenger has been ruthless is discarding many of the players who brought him success and helped him build his reputation and status, because they were the wrong side of 30, and despite them in many cases wanting to stay, and still having lots to offer on the field, and in preparing the next generation of players. That was generally seen as good business and he was congratulated for doing things on his terms with these players (who contributed and could still then contribute, far more than Diaby could every dream of to AFC). And the time to be ruthless to Diaby has long since imo passed. No-one cried a river for Eduardo when he was moved on quickly after he recovered , and even in his short time at AFC it’s arguable that he contributed more to the AFC cause than Diaby.

    Moreover, there are some revisionist judgments about Diaby as though he’s proven himself to be some sort of exceptional player, and that his only problems of a player are fitness related. When there have actually been some seasons in the last 6-7 years that Diaby has had a decent fitness record (by his standards of course) and has strung many games together, yet he has never been anything remotely close to a consistent player even when fit. He was often the most routinely criticized player for his performances (slow decision making) etc even when he was fit.

    Another thing, he was undoubtedly affected and continues to be affected by his 2006 ankle dislocation/break, but Diaby even in his Auxerre days regularly struggled with injury, and iirc Wenger even mused about him having genetically weak bones/muscles etc. It seems regardless of that horror tackle, Diaby’s makeup as a player was unfortunately just, injury prone.

    As a human being I wish Diaby a speedy recovery, and good luck in the future for his career. As a gooner, and a fan of a club that preaches fiscal responsibility, I hope when he recovers (and I do believe the club has a DUTY to get him well) that he is quickly moved on, he takes up valuable money and space that could go to players that can contribute more in terms of quality, and in terms of reliability.
    ………..

  • A. Stewart

    ………..He seems like a nice guy, I wish him a speedy recovery, but he was never ever a great player for us, even when he was decently fit. His play was characterized more often by slow/poor decision making, running down blind alleys, poor passing, and mental lapses far more than it was by tearing up the pitch in spectacular style. On his day he was unplayable, but those days were extremely few and extremely far between and not just as a result of injury related problems, but because for all his athletic prowess and skill, he just wasn’t a great player.

    ……….. he’s reportedly been one of our higher earners, and be it as a result of his fault or not, hasn’t produced anything to warrant such earnings. And because we are very rigid with certain policies regarding player matters, it’s difficult for many to accept carrying a passenger who takes up space and resources that a player of better quality and reliabilty could benefit from.

    It doesn’t make one less of a Gooner or evil, to think (while wishing his a speedy recovery, and acknowleding the club has a duty to rehabilitate his so long as he is an employee under contract), that hopefully soon thereafter he’s moved on..And I wish him all the best at that point, be it in football or outside of football, and I’m sure he’ll be fine and live a comfortable life.

  • Arun

    Abou, you will come back stronger. Don’t lose heart , you are bound to come back and football world will give you due respect which you thoroughly deserve. What you need a little patience and faith during the testing period.Good luck ,my friend – believe in yourself, you will be the ultimate victor.

  • A. Stewart

    @ Walter:

    —-“We all know the injury hit career Diaby has suffered over the last years. It all started with this : (Dan Smith tackle)”

    That’s not exactly and completely true. Diaby struggled with injury from his days with Auxerre, he made 7 total appearances in his final injury-ravaged season there. Yes he was much younger and still physically developing, but injury and regular injury problems were nothing new to Diaby before Dan Smith. Just pointing that out doesn’t mean I’m minimizing the effect of that horrible injury but perhaps along with its lingering effect (it’s been some 7 years!), maybe Diaby is simply an injury-prone..and I remember reading comments from Wenger or some club official (correct me if wrong) that genetically he may have weak bones/muscles/ structures…

    —“I know some will say: we should have got rid of him earlier. I just say RVP. ”

    There’s a huge difference between the two, QUALITY. Very few doubted that RvP had rare world class talent from a very young age regardless of his injuries. And when he played during his injury ravaged years he often and regularly displayed that world class talent. Diaby just didn’t, he displayed far more ponderous play, poor decision making etc that he did glimpses on quality (which of course there were some). It’s far easier to justify sticking with RvP rather than Diaby simply because of the difference in their quality as players. A relatively fit Diaby (and he has had some decently fit seasons by his standards with us) was at the very very best, a decent-ish player, with the extremely odd spectacular game.

    —-“And then when you look on the internet you see so called Arsenal “fans” (not supporters) who find it funny. Who make jokes about it. This is something that makes me sick.”

    Honestly I haven’t seen much of that at all around the internet. But I do agree with you that such behaviour is DISGUSTING. However, that shouldn’t be lumped in with those who think it’s long time that Diaby should have been moved on, that he doesn’t contribute much (regardless of whether it’s his fault, and that they think (like me) he should be moved on if/when he recovers, especially as we are led to believe that our resources are limited, and he takes up wages and space and contributes little/nothing. I can’t help but get the feeling though that people are lumping the two views together (those laughing at his misfortune versus those taking a practical view that he should have been/be moved on for football reasons), when they are not remotely the same.

    —–“I always thought that Arsenal was class.”
    We are, and while many think Diaby should have long been moved on from the club, he’s here, and the club has a DUTY to rehabilitate him as best that they can, and they should, and they will.

    ——“A bunch of idiots who really think that Diaby is doing this on purpose. ”

    I really think you are exaggerating a vast minority stance here. Most either are sympathetic to him and want him to come back and contribute to us in the future, or are sympathetic to him and want him to be moved on for footballing reasons and nothing else (not personal hate or glee at his misfortune).

    ——“I wish you all the best Abou and hope that whatever happens to you in your football career and your personal life that you will find the strength to overcome whatever live is throwing at you. Be strong and keep the faith.”

    I completely echo these sentiments, I wish him a speedy recovery too, I hope he settles in to a decent football career in the future (personally I don’t think it should be at AFC especially when we admittedly “gamble” on his fitness by letting go a more productive and ever fit player in Song specifically [imo] because of that gamble), and if his future doesn’t lie in football, I wish him the best too, and I’m sure he’ll be fine (assuming he’s been and will be smart with his monetary resources).

  • A. Stewart

    @ Passenal:

    “Well said Walter. Abou is a good man and it is sad to see such a waste of talent. Those who are currently wishing him ill will get their just desserts soon enough and when they do I hope they get the same level of sympathy and support.
    ..”

    Honestly, where (be it on UA or any other AFC-related blog) are these hordes (implied) of people wishing Diaby ill? I’ve been on blog after blog after blog and again the vast vast majority are either:

    a) Completely sympathetic and want him to come back to his best with Arsenal in the future.

    or

    b)Sympathetic about his injury, but feel he should have been, or needs to be moved on after he recovers, purely based on footballing reasons.

    The morons laughing or making jokes are extremely few and very very far between.

  • Adam

    Diaby will recover, and he will put a gunners shirt on again.
    He will get the best treatment on offer out there.

    Its in these situations that Arsenal show their true colours. Loyalty to all staff. only one person will make the decision to retire from the game and that is Abou.

    He is still only 26, 27 in May so has at least 5/6 seasons of top level football available to him. One hopes he see’s out his whole career at Arsenal whether he is injured or not. This is what sets Arsenal apart from some other clubs.

    Good luck to the young man and if he wants, as part of his rehabilitation he can work my allotment for me.

  • Arvind

    It’s very very unfortunate that this happened. And he is only 26 and has a contract at Arsenal. So till he is here I will back him 100% to recover, be strong and put on an Arsenal shirt and make a difference. I do not understand why his career is over. Get well Abou.

    I’ve always had a soft spot for all those kids who AW brought in and left.. Cesc, Abou, Denilson, Theo, Senderos etc etc etc… many of whom were utter scum ( as per the all knowing AAA ) .. and I hoped they’d all make it… but obviously that wasn’t possible. So yes, if science shows that Abou can still recover and be a big part of Arsenal…despite all this.. who am I to say no. Abou might be reading this blog while at home for all you know…let’s stay positive.

    As for all the ‘pragmatism’… seriously guys… you are right. Maybe Arsenal needs to dump every injury prone player and cut the wage bill. Although of course, say we buy a new player and he tears his cruciate on day 2, we’d have to dump him too.. and so it continues. I digress. All I’m saying is, there is a time to shut up and offer support to a person in trouble… and there is a time for the pragmatism as well. For example: You don’t go to a father of a 2 year old 2 days after his wife passes away and tell him.. ‘You have a young kid. Get married again. It’s the logical thing to do’. Doubtlessly sound advice… but really… how do you expect it to be processed and accepted?

    It isn’t my money and never will be.. but if Arsenal give him even more chances and he finally makes it..somehow… and then maybe signs another contract, I’ll be very happy.

    As for RVP … they say that hindsight is the greatest teacher in life, and there’s a reason they say that. I’d honestly like to see how many people were backing RVP through all thos injuries. Many times I’ve felt we should have sold him and tried to get Gigi Buffon all those years ago. So really… IMHO… and it’s just my opinion… that fans at times .. should just be fans.. and support the team and not offer financial advice on whose contracts should be terminated and who should be bought out… and who we should buy.

    Yes… doubtlessly this post will come across as cocky and there might be people who miss the point of it and slam me for “thinking for them” or start a satirical tirade..and if so..so be it. In reality, I’m just saying…don’t kick someone when they’re down. They need your support.

  • A. Stewart

    “As for all the ‘pragmatism’… seriously guys… you are right. Maybe Arsenal needs to dump every injury prone player and cut the wage bill. Although of course, say we buy a new player and he tears his cruciate on day 2, we’d have to dump him too.. and so it continues. I digress.”

    I’m sorry but that’s a tad bit silly a statement. It’s almost as though you think it’s a reactionary knee-jerk call for “dumping him” or as though he’s just like “every injury prone player”.

    1) It’s been 7 years come May of his injury problems (Dan Smith) with AFC. 7 years. Regardless of fault, that’s not your regularly run of the mill “injury prone player” not even RvP at his injury plagued worst. And by the time he comes back to match fitness, assuming no further set-backs (unlikely given his history) it will be pushing 8 years of injury problems with AFC. 8 Years! I’d bet that’s near or exceeds the average career length of a PL player! Yes RvP finally overcame him it seems, but when Diaby returns in his late 20s and given his history (which is far worse than RvP’s including number, types, recurrence and severity of injuries) isn’t it logical to assume that he will continue to increasingly have injury problems as he ages professionally? Regardless of whether I believe he should still be under contract at this present time, the point is he is, and AFC has a responsibility to rehab him. The Club imo, owes him nothing beyond that! He’s had seven years of patience and high earnings at a big club, that no other big club would give him.

    2)The inconvenient truth around Diaby is that while he’s been undoubtedly affected by his ankle break in 2006, he was injury-prone from his days with Auxerre (which is reportedly part of the reason they decided to get rid of him and cash in). Diaby it seems, regardless of Dan Smith is an injury prone player, which was made worse and more pre-disposed to injury because of Dan Smith.

    3) Regarding cutting the wage-bill. It’s a big problem (that by the way the club just this seasons has admitted needs adjustment) where Diaby is concerned, because he’s amongst the higher earners reportedly, and is NOT seen as a squad player by Wenger, but rather a player who he has long intended to in some way build a side around, or at worst make a very critical piece of his first choice team. So much so that Wenger was willing to gamble (his words) this season on Diaby’s fitness and in doing so let go a far more productive MF (even comparing to when Diaby was fit), one who provided a physicality we lack and that Diaby is specifically supposed to offer, and more importantly the player who practically never got injured despite playing almost every game, in Alex Song. Wenger’s desire to persist with Diaby has been at the expense of bringing in other players who could contribute more in terms of reliability and in terms of quality (imo and that of many, Diaby’s at very best a hit or miss player even when fit). That’s why Diaby taking up wages and a squad place is a real problem. And why he isn’t just like “any other injury prone player”.

    Speedy recovery, but thereafter imo, it’s time to cut the ties and wish him the best imo.

  • A. Stewart

    “As for RVP …”

    Notwithstanding that Diaby’s injury problems drawf anything we went through with RvP, the key difference is, quality.

    No matter how many try to revise history, Diaby even when fit was greatly inconsistent, slow/poor in his decisions, a liability for a gaffe here of there, not a great passer/tackler etc. It’s amazing how people seem to forget how when he was fit for a good chunk of a couple seasons he was regularly seen (even more than Denilson) as our most frustraiting player.

    Sure there are games here and there when he was unplayable, but there were far more when he was extremely poor. Yes he could show the ability of galloping through midfield effortlessly past 5/6 players, but more often than not those magical runs ended with a poor decision.

    RvP regardless of his injuries (which again pale in comparison to Diaby’s problems) displayed class in spades in comparison, hence the difference.

  • A. Stewart

    @ Adam:

    “He is still only 26, 27 in May so has at least 5/6 seasons of top level football available to him.” Don’t you think it’s logical that given his injury history in terms of frequency, catastrophic nature, variety of different injuries etc..that his injury problems will worsen as he gets older? Therefore that 5/6 seasons available to him is very unlikely?

    “One hopes he see’s out his whole career at Arsenal whether he is injured or not. This is what sets Arsenal apart from some other clubs.” Is that a good thing? That AFC would persist paying a player highly (when we are led to believe that resources for players are tight) to not contribute at the expense of retaining or bringing in players who are more reliable and offer more in terms of quality, or better said at the expense of what is arguably better for the team/club/fans i.e. the collective versus what’s best for one player?

    I agree that our persistence with Diaby sets us apart from other clubs, but I really don’t see that as a good thing. The millions Diaby has collected while contributing little/nothing is more than fair and generous. The club owes him nothing (bar rehabbing him now as he is still a contracted player).

  • A. Stewart

    “Although of course, say we buy a new player and he tears his cruciate on day 2, we’d have to dump him too.. and so it continues.”

    I wanted to address this comment specifically. It’s football, any player can get injured at any point. If that mere possibility/risk is the yardstick then we should never sign anyone. That’s no justification for not getting in or retaining a player.

    Setting the inherent risk of injury of any player at any time aside, the club pays people highly to scout and recruit players, and it’s logical that part of the evaluation of a player is their injury history and medical condition (hence medicals) this is done to mitigate risk.

    Does it mean said player can never rupture an ACL two days after signing? Of course not. But the chances of a player with a good injury/medical history getting injured or better yet repeatedly suffering with injuries, versus a player who has a decade long history of repeated and varied injury problems, is far smaller.

  • Arvind

    @A.Stewart: I have not followed his Auxerre days but I’ll take your word for it. He (and many other players) at his age were still growing. There is no way you can guarantee who will make it or not by looking at an injury record at 18 or 19. Certainly Dan Smith does come into the equation. Can’t ever say what would have happened.

    No Arsenal don’t “owe” a thing to anyone.. nor do the players “owe” anything. I’m well aware it is a business…and so it should be. There is a degree of class you can still maintain..however and it should be done.

    Having said that, I ask you again.. is there a time and place for this or not? Please re-read the example I wrote about above if you’re really interested. That’s all. 1 day after a person is down… you do not come out and talk of the future. Let Diaby recover well..there’ll be time for this at that time.

    While you make some points which are certainly worth debating, I do feel that while urging pragmatism yourself in this situation, you are letting your frustrations with AW and the club’s policy..seep into this debate. While your opinions and feelings might well be valid… again.. there’s a time and place for it. That is ALL I am saying. This thread is NOT that. If you don’t agree…let’s agree to disagree and move on.

  • Passenal

    You are completely heartless A Stewart – I don’t see what ‘wealth’ has to do with anything

    Byron – you are wrong on 2 counts. Diaby’s 20 appearances were not ‘poor’. The Arsenal midfield looks the most balanced when he is in it. Arsene does not ‘rely’ on him, but when he is fit he plays because he is that good.

    Perhaps if you can’t say anything good, try saying nothing. It’s not that difficult if you try.

  • bob

    Walter,
    Diaby’s smashed potential is truly painful, and we can only pray that he has the courage to make the hard, life-changing decision that lies before him.

    It has also been – tragically too easy to predict this, and since August when Song was allowed to leave (with not a word of advocacy that he should be kept on, on UA’s part).

    I’d add that you might extend the same good (and deserved) best wishes for Barcary Sagna, clearly a chronic target of the bloodthirsty ghouls, BEFORE he is put on the chopping block. Would you consider that in advance of his being shipped out and advocate the same loyalty be shown to his service that has been shown to Diaby; and especially as Sagna still has high-level MOTM levels of play (already shown this season) with possibly a return to his former top-level, consistent form going forward?

    Also, as the impact of this injury is once again compounded by the reckless – and forseeable – gamble that dispatched Song, would you pay heed to what Pat Rice says at @10:43:
    “Well said Walter, I do feel for the man. My concern is that our beloved manager did not replace Song, if Arteta who is not by a long shot a holding midfielder of any great note,gets injured then we will play Ramsey there, totally out of position and he will get vilified once more. Very unfair on the player. Wenger obviously don’t trust Coq otherwise he would have played him there when Arteta was missing recently. Our manager has left us very short once again.”

  • AL

    A. Stewart, think you made your point, why hijack this thread and turn it into a Diaby-bashing one when the desired result is the opposite? You’re a heartless person, and please let those that genuinely feel sorry for a talented player who will most likely never realize his true potential wish him well. You’re wasting valuable space here, if you really have that much negative space to say about Abou why not write your own article where you can pour as much trash as you like about him.

  • AL

    Many of us may want to say otherwise but before rvp’s one good season with us the majority wanted to see him sold, and were questioning the logic in keeping a player who only seemed to manage 10games a season. I bet those are now the same people saying Wenger should never have sold rvp! I know quite a few wanted Rosicky sold too, but now its a different story. Diaby is very skilful, and is naturally an Arsenal type of player. I rate him highly, and don’t think Wenger or the French coaches are all stupid to think he’s that good. I really hope he overcomes this latest setback and shines for us, then we will see what these know-it-all fans will say.

  • A. Stewart

    “A. Stewart, think you made your point, why hijack this thread and turn it into a Diaby-bashing one when the desired result is the opposite? You’re a heartless person, and please let those that genuinely feel sorry for a talented player who will most likely never realize his true potential wish him well. You’re wasting valuable space here, if you really have that much negative space to say about Abou why not write your own article where you can pour as much trash as you like about him.
    ..”

    Meh, I have a big heart actually, maybe one day you’ll get to know me before you toss wild accusations about someone you have not had the pleasure of meeting.

    Desired result? The point of this thread and all threads on UA is to discuss the topic is it not? The topic is Diaby’s injury. I haven’t strayed from it.

    Lastly, I wish him a speedy recovery, and hope he finds some future in football. In my opinion the club should move on for football reasons..I really don’t see what’s so heartless about that.

    Also I didn’t bash or trash him…I have nothing bad to say about his predicament or Diaby the person (who I don’t know). I’ve laid out what I think is a factual argument and the case against persisting with him further as a player due to his injury history and inconsistent play when fit, for the better of the team/club.

    But hey to each their own.

  • WalterBroeckx

    A. Stewart,
    you should join twitter. You’d be amazad by the vitriol that is spouted towards Arsenal players by some who say they are supporters. Now Diaby, yesterday Ramsey, the day before someone else, tomorrow another one…

  • A. Stewart

    “You are completely heartless A Stewart – I don’t see what ‘wealth’ has to do with anything”

    It’s simple, he’ll be fine for the rest of his life, and has accumulated that wealth while not contributing much to the club at the expense of brining in or in Song’s case retaining players who can provide more productivity and reliability…

    Far worst things happen to regular folk daily who don’t have the resources to cope. It’s just perspective.

    Hey as gooners we talk about Financial matters ALL THE TIME in relation to EVERYTHING (regardless of which side of the manager fence you sit) so why not in this?

    I do feel for him from a player perspective, as football is obviously his love, it must be devastating for him to endure this, and I hope he finds a future in football again, but not at AFC…but big picture in life, he will/should be just fine.

  • A. Stewart

    “@A.Stewart: I have not followed his Auxerre days but I’ll take your word for it. He (and many other players) at his age were still growing. There is no way you can guarantee who will make it or not by looking at an injury record at 18 or 19. Certainly Dan Smith does come into the equation. Can’t ever say what would have happened.”

    Good thing then that I mentioned (forgot if it is in this thread or the one about “worth”) that he was injury prone from his Auxerre days but some consideration should be given to his age and developing body. Nevertheless, I’d say he was injury prone from then, more so that your average player of that age.

    Of course Dan Smith comes into the situation and I have said that repeatedly, it’s undoubtedly exponentially negatively affected a player who was already prone to injuries.

    I know none of this is his fault, but I care about AFC more than one player, and persisting with Diaby has been to the detriment of the club imo, finacially, and considering the space he has taken without producing anything. Given our tight resources it’s important to note that we have not bought players specifically because of him, and we have got rid of players because of him..and there is precious little to show for it.

    What’s so bad about pointing out these obvious things? It’s time to finally move on from planning (gambling, per Wenger) around Diaby for the better of the club. It’s a gamble that hasn’t paid dividends for SEVEN-EIGHT (by the time he returns) YEARS! How much longer should we persist?

  • A. Stewart

    “A. Stewart,
    you should join twitter. You’d be amazad by the vitriol that is spouted towards Arsenal players by some who say they are supporters. Now Diaby, yesterday Ramsey, the day before someone else, tomorrow another one…
    ..”

    I wouldn’t be amazed at all, and I’ve seen examples of the vitriol you speak about around the web (including twitter) about this about Ramsey, Walcott, Song, and even further back to Denilson, Eboue etc. I’m aware and have been aware of all that.

    The point I was making that (in this specific Diaby ACL case) those morons represent a minority of the opinions expressed abound the web for this particular situation..

    The majority are not jumping with glee and making horrible jokes about his injury…

    Rather they are completely sympathetic and want him to return to his “best” with AFC specifically.

    Or

    (like me) they are sympathetic, but think it’s time to wish him the best (when he recovers) and move on from planning around him.

    That’s all I’m saying.

    Hey as you perhaps know I’ve mentioned it several times on here from the beginning of the season that “gambling” on Diaby was a borderline negligent managerial decision, and it didn’t take having 30 years of managerial experience, being at Colney training everyday etc to make the very reasonable assumption that a player struggling with injuries for 7 years was going to continue to struggle with injuries, and gambling away (and making some good money of course) the one player who was always fit (and quite productive) in Song, specifically to plan around Diaby was an alarming decision.

  • Arvind

    @A.Stewart: Those are all valid points and one’s which I do agree with largely. Keeping Diaby = letting go of Song or/and buying new players. All true.

    What you have NOT answered is my question regarding the timing of your comments/statements. You say exactly everything a month later; I’d be happy to agree with a lot of it (most of it maybe.. bar the AW bashing). You saying it now..is not on IMO. It’s far too soon to think about cutting losses and moving on. Let the guy recover (which you have said in fairness) and THEN (which you have NOT) go ahead and rationally debate all of this.

    I am all for good business and everything that comes with it. No problem. However there’s a time and place for everything..in football ..and in life. Everything.

  • Adam

    @A.Stewart.

    I live with hope, hope that Abou Diaby can overcome his injuries, Hope that Arsenal will challenge for numerous tittles over the next decades.

    Hope that a sport such a football can help unite people.

    Hope that Arsenal continue to behave in a gentlemanly manner.

    I Hope I will continue to be eternally optimistic.

  • Arsenal1Again

    As far as I’m concerned, he has a place in the Arsenal for life because of that magnificent kick in John Terry’s head. The guy can do no wrong. Abou, you are a Legend.

  • gouresh

    Abu is very talanted and we all know that. The physical nature of the EPL does not suite his body. Its really really heartening to see him constantly injured. We cannot rely on him for a full season so should make him a squad player, or take him off the scene to allow him full recovery medical and natural so that his body has enough rest and time or sell / loan him where the league is not so physical where he can come to his full potential.

  • bob

    “…gambling away (and making some good money of course) the one player who was always fit (and quite productive) in Song, specifically to plan around Diaby was an alarming decision.”
    A. Stewart,
    I’ve also asserted from last August that Song was gambled away. I disagree that it was to plan it all around Diaby. That is an overstatement. It is also an understatement because the reckless gamble was also based on several bone-head assumptions: that the previous season’s injured – Wilshere, Rosicky, Diaby, Arteta – would return in (a) a timely and (b) a close to in-form way; that Arteta could consistently fill the midfield’s defensive needs; that Ramsey would finally blossom; that Cazorla would fast bed-in with the fluid Arsenal style (which went missing); that there’d be enough time after the requisite Asia trip for the brand new team to gel. None of this worked out; at least not in time to have been a competitive factor in this season’s (and maybe not even next season’s) table. Last August, all this was pointed out by several of we the commenters here. I take no joy to remember this; but I will remember it in order to rein in the allures of self-deception about how we got to be so ultimately average this season. Even if that translates into (as I do hope for) the heralded fourth place finish (worth 30M). I hope so, not in the least to pre-empt the poverty pleas that will otherwise abound. Then again, the economy will sooner than later have its massive say at the turnstiles; and the 30M qualifier may be deemed necessary just to stay in place. (That would be 4th place.)

  • Gord

    Comment from Arsene Wenger after the Reading win from the BBC:
    > Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger, talking about midfielder Abou Diaby who was ruled out for up to nine months with a serious knee injury earlier in the week: “That was the shock of the week for us, because I thought originally it was just a little twist of the knee.

    > “When they told me it was a rupture of his cruciate, and when you know what this guy has gone through, how many times he has worked day and night to come back in rehab, it is just demoralising. I hope he will find the resources and the strength to come back, because he was quite down.”

  • Shard

    Gord

    I’ve had 2 ACL tears in the same knee. I can attest that the ‘trauma’ was enough to affect me as a person, let alone my athletic ability, which is nowhere near what it was, although I’m still trying to get back the level of fitness that I had (7 years on) Arsene Wenger is spot on when he talks about Diaby having gone through so much. The money he’s made doesn’t stop him from feeling the same emotions as anybody else.

    As to the article itself. It must be noted that Dan Smith only got a yellow card for his ‘tackle’. Of the 3 high profile leg breaks we’ve had in the league, the Smith on Diaby one was the worst by far, but yet got less coverage because it was the first. Also, it is worth remembering the sort of tackles Diaby has faced whenever he’s tried to come back. Essien had a swipe at his ankle. Robinson of Bolton lunged in. Barton nearly broke his leg again. None of those were judged to even be fouls I think. Barton’s maybe was, but it was Diaby who saw red for his perfectly understandable reaction. The English league should be ashamed at allowing this to happen to a player.

    As for his new contract, I’m with Walter. Diaby is undoubtedly talented. Even this pre season, Serge Gnabry got to train with the first team squad. When asked which player in the Arsenal team was the most talented, his response was Diaby. Diaby was 24 when given a new contract (in 2010), and had made 40 appearances the year before. Just because it didn’t work out, it doesn’t mean it was the wrong decision.

    Should Diaby go? Well, yeah, if it works out for all parties. But that’s besides the point. He’s our player. He’s done nothing wrong, and has always been willing to work hard for our cause. For me, I will always support Diaby, and wish he can spend a few years playing and enjoying regular football before he retires, regardless of which club he’s at.