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October 2016
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Support for Untold, Sol for Mayor, Imbrahimovic for Arsenal, Arry Tweets, abuse for Untold

By Tony Attwood

Funny ol’ world ain’t it.  All these odd stories popping up, including gawd elp us, a growing level of support for Untold’s little campaign to do something about the loan system.  Who’d have thought it.

Support for an Untold campaign or analysis does happen, although invariably without the newspapers ever acknowledging we were there first. (Remember the piece about why England always do so badly in world cups for example being down to number of coaches – it is now virtually the mainstream analysis).

Today the issue is the loan system, being modified slightly at the end of next season, but still not at all right.  And wow, calls for its modification are popping up in all sorts of places – most recently in an amusing diatribe from  Barry Glendenning in the Guardian.

Barry G comes across as a nice sort of guy .  His personal CV says things commenting that he has “written for bad television programmes, reasonably good radio programmes, the Irish Sunday Independent, Men’s Health and several other publications he can’t remember off the top of his head.”  Nice one.

He’s now with the Guardian who picked up on the problems with loans in September 2014, commenting as we all were at the time, about the way Chelsea were buying everything that moved, and then loaning them out again wholesale, although missing our earlier commentaries on the issue.

Maybe that’s because Glendenning is an Arsenal basher, so you know what you’ll get with him (traditional swipes with no attempt to get the facts right).  Thus we have all the usual talk about the “world’s most expensive season tickets” [we’ve shown that to be untrue so often I’ve given up on it now], but he does have neat ideas such as banning Premier League clubs from borrowing anyone on loan and only being able to loan players to clubs further down the league.

Maybe, maybe not – so far Untold has been pushing for a limit on the number of players a club can loan out – but then he has a twist.   Clubs should also loan out fans.  He suggests 2000 fans of Arsenal (maybe those on the season ticket waiting list) should be loaned to Barnet.

Now that is not so fruitcake as it sounds – nor as silly as the writer intends.  After all, I’ve been loaned (at my own behest).  When I got a job as a Senior Lecturer in Music in Devon, several centuries back, I found myself living on the edge of Dartmoor, with a young family and no chance of watching Arsenal.  So I loaned myself on saturday afternoons to Torquay United.

I won’t reveal the clubs other Untold writers have loan spells with, but I know that my loan spell was not unique even among our little band.

Barnet has a capacity of 5000, but have only been getting half that number in the Conference so they need more.  Let’s loan them some – not least on a Saturday when Arsenal’s game is moved to a Friday, or Sunday, or Monday or any other day Sky dictates.

(Glendenning also suggests Manchester United fans being loaned to Southend, in order to “spare no end of travel expenses”.)

Now I think it could go further.  I think that Arsenal supporters could offer themselves – a sort of new approach to Crowd Funding.  2000 could sign up to go and support a lower league team for a season, and get a bulk discount on the entry price, plus a full refund of their ticket costs if the club they pick gets promoted.

But moving on in this brave new world where the only men’s football is a total rubbish international while the women’s World Cup game is played without any allegation about Fifa corruption, in front of a record crowd, we find that Sol Campbell is putting himself forward as the Conservative candidate for election as London mayor, in the even braver Post-Boris apocalypse.

Sol has a nice line in his campaign to the effect that those people who had thousands of pounds spent on their education by going to Eton and Oxford have screwed up totally, so now it is time for a worker to try his hand.  I rather like that, although I am not sure how it will go down with the Tory Grandees.  Maybe they’ll loan him to the Liberal Democrats who are rather lacking these days.

Elsewhere Arry, who always claimed in court that he didn’t know how to operate digital technology, but left it to his dog, has learned how to Tweet.  I do worry for the English language.

And the Telegraph is still dragging up old news, with Arsenal having made £3m out of Barcelona winning the Champs League – it seems it was part of our ex-captain’s transfer.  Barce forgot to add the line in the clause that says, “if Thomas Vermaelen plays.”  But these details can be a bit pesky – a bit like checking if a child you sign actually is an EU citizen.  So many countries in the EU now, who can tell?

As for that wretched international, the Guardian (who thought that Jack’s crime in leading the Tottenham chant was “showing a bit of personality”) thought he played well.  The Telegraph which thought Jack Wilshere should have been hung, drawn and quartered – and then fined – “showed flashes of promise for England v Ireland, but ultimately failed once again to deliver.”   Seems to be a theme there.

But lo, that is not all.  The Guardian also tells us that

“London-based football journalists were choking on their Cheerios with excitement this morning following the news that one-man quote factory Zlatan Ibrahimovic could be making their jobs that much easier by bringing his repertoire of flicks, finishes and swaggering bombast to the capital this summer. Not just on holiday, either, but in a permanent arrangement also involving Arsenal and £11m.”

Well, well.  It is possible.  He scored 19 goals in 24 Ligue 1 games in 2014/15 plus nine in French cup games and two in the Champs League.

I go with that because I think we need backup, not mega-deals.  We have a great team, but we will once again be chopped to bits by defenders who know they are immune to referee action.  Seeing Zlatan on the beach would scare the hell out of them, knowing that if they kick Giroud much more, he could be of and Ibra on.

And that is about it, except for the abuse.  What puzzles me about people who send in abuse, or even the, “because of this piece I won’t be reading your articles any more” stuff.

First, mostly they don’t get published, second, those of us editing the sites have seen it so often before it really doesn’t have any effect any more, and third when physical harm is threatened, all the details tracking the post back to its originator, go off to the police.

And yet still people think it is clever, or somehow worthwhile, to send it in.

Funny ol’ game.

22 comments to Support for Untold, Sol for Mayor, Imbrahimovic for Arsenal, Arry Tweets, abuse for Untold

  • blacksheep63

    i’m not sure the Emirates has room for Ibra’s ego: it only holds 60,000

  • Mick

    Tony, I take issue with ‘Barry G comes across as a nice sort of guy’.
    Do you not realize he works for Talksport (on Sunday mornings) where his hatred of Arsenal is allowed free reign.

  • Mick

    ‘Elsewhere Arry, who always claimed in court that he didn’t know how to operate digital technology, but left it to his dog, has learned how to Tweet.’
    That would be the same Arry who claimed under oath in his trial that he could not read or write and a couple of weeks after being acquitted said on the radio he was reading Sir Alex Fergusons new book.

  • Ajay

    I for one hope Zlatan makes it to the Emirates. Call it his ego or whatever, he can bring in the much needed roughness missing from most of the lot and opposing defender’s won’t be able to bully him of that easily.

  • colario

    ”(Glendenning also suggests Manchester United fans being loaned to Southend, in order to “spare no end of travel expenses”.)”

    This suggestion reminds me of a snippet on a recent BBC Radio 5 606 phone in program.

    606 presenter to Liverpool supporter:

    ” What is the word on the street regarding Brendan Rodgers?”

    Liverpool supporter:

    ” I don’t know. I live in Cornwall.”

    For the non Englanders who come here.

    Liverpool is in the North West of England and Cornwall is a county about 200 miles or 300Ks (numbers are approximate) south west of England.

    The most west point of Cornwall is called ‘Land’s End. The next land is the USA.

  • apo Armani

    Nice read!! and of source we must forget how the child traffickers (ban or no ban) sign a player, paying a reported 16m quid for – who actually won’t get a kick of the ball till the ban is lifted!! what the hell is all that about!

  • apo Armani

    mustn’t **

  • jake

    cough cornwall is part of england

  • nicky

    Like the idea of Sol for Mayor.
    But does he realise that the mayoral barber (the one who spends hours each day arranging Boris’s hair into that special un-arranged look), will almost certainly leave with him. 😉

  • Tony Attwood

    Didn’t know about Glendenning on Talk Sport.

    Mind you that bloody Tony Attwood once did a two hour show on Talk Sport about the history of Arsenal.


    That would be me then.

  • Northern Nuge

    I cannot see the Zlatan to Arsenal deal happening, I may be wrong, but if my memory serves me correctly there was talk many years ago before his first major move that Arsenal invited him on trial, which he ‘politely’ refused on the basis he was too good to have a trial. This has all the hallmarks of a phantom/vapour transfer and a new deal coming his way or one last mega deal to another club, perhaps Italy.

  • ARSENAL 13

    Zlatan….Hahaha…..imagine him.coming over to London. And then Mr Wenger sends him to have trials.

    Zlatan no do trials. Hahaha.

  • Brickfields Gunners

    I think its long due that we get some measure of revenge on the UK media and their stable of ostriches for all those years of misreporting , misleading and the outright lies regarding Arsenal.
    Seeing that they are very often sniffing at the carrots being proffered on this site , a very well thought out elaborate and devious sting is due methinks .A vapour story or two ,so to speak .
    And also that fact that most of us are getting terrible bored of the close season and are just itching to bash ‘them’ silly .It could not only brighten up the overall mood of the faithful , it will get all the AKBs on bullshit payback time mode !
    Release the Kraken I say !

  • john

    A “sting” is an appealing idea. However, since the media publish nonsense and fiction in abundance anyway, would it have any impact?

  • Brickfields Gunners

    Let me get the ball rolling with this little tale that may tickle someone’s fancy !

    Since Zlatan is being mentioned here , and that he has already ‘done’ all the major cities in Europe (Paris , Milan , Turin, , Barcelona ,Amsterdam , Malmo ) ,maybe, just maybe , he would really like to move on and to sample the lifestyle of London ? Things have soured for him in Paris , with the fans not at all amused with his frequent outbursts and recent utterings .
    And especially as his presence there could boost the chances of his good friend Sol Campbell, who is hoping to stand for election as Mayor of London .

    He has always admitted his admiration for Sol ,who of course is an Arsenal Invincible and who still holds some clout within the club and more so with Arsene Wenger . Not forgetting the fact that Arsenal are on the look out for a world class striker to front ‘The Spine ” that everyone is saying what will win trophies.

    And with persistent rumours swirling about that the recent treble winning Barca side are soon to be dismantled as to comply with the crippling FFP regulations imposed upon them ; and that a certain world class centreback is being tracked by Arsenal as a stop term, but necessary measure to shore up their porous defence and also to give Per Mertersacker a long overdue rest .

    Gerald Pique is said to be open to a move to London ,and to Arsenal , and eager to pair up with Laurent Koscielny as the defensive lynchpins of that proverbial spine . While Arsenal also have Gabriel , Calum Chambers , as well as others who could play in that position , Pique with all his experience is the man AW really wants.

    Its is a well known fact that his wife , the Colombian rocker chick , Shakira , is not only an Arsenal fan , but she also said to idolise their world class goalkeeper and her own countryman , David Ospina .What is not well known is that she has been invited to be a judge on the Britain Got Talent show for the new season .

    If AW and Arsenal are able to sign these two players for the next season , it would really be a major coup for them. Season ticket sales would go through the roof ! Sponsors would be lining up to get their companies names associated with Arsenal FC.

    As for these players , they would be really happy to be reunited again ,after their happy times together at Barcelona ,where they apparently really hit it off and were an ‘item’, as this old photos show .

  • Brickfields Gunners

    Well , john ? Is this story far fetched ?
    Sorry for all the mistakes , as I ‘ m working as I write this .Too much cutting and changing as well as laughing my head off in the process ! I really wanted to ‘flesh’ it out more ,but the bare bones are a fanciful story enough.

    should be …short term , but necessary ..( had changed it from stop gap !)

  • john


    Very good, you may be head-hunted by the Telegraph!

  • Brickfields Gunners

    My first choice would be Mad Magazine – always wanted to member of their ‘usual gang of idiots ‘!

  • Brickfields Gunners

    In the meantime looking forward to ‘arry’s tweets . Hope they are are as funny as these quotes –

  • Minesy

    Funnily enough I was on loan while at University to Aston Villa … been to more games at Villa Park than anywhere except Highbury and The Emirates … so there was a little sadness for the Villa fans last week … but the “parent” club always comes first !!! 😉

  • finsbury

    The most interesting observation of Master Glendenning of the Manchester Grunt was his admission or strong inference on a recent podcast that the PGMOB officials would tilt and sway towards their Lord and Master Darth Slurguson when he ruled in Manchester.

    I could not buy help ask myself why did this football journalist lack the footballs required at the time what everyone in football and behind understood through observations and records (& not opinions 😉 ) that this was obviously the case. If not before then certainly after the 50th game.

    A deeply strange admission from an adult, given the belated timing of it.

    But perhaps it was a very revealing admission. We all have to eat 😉

  • BrummieGooner

    During the sixties,while at University, I was “on loan” to Dundee. Because I did cross country and athletics on Saturday afternoon, I didn’t see many matches. However I did attend the 1963 European Cup Semi-Final between Dundee and AC Milan. A “certain” Alan Gilzean got himself sent off and it was a rear-guard action for the rest of the game, and the final result of only losing 1-0 was entirely down to Ian Ure. I was delighted when we signed him.