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October 2016
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Arsène begs board to make bid, serious injury rumour, Mourinho next Arsenal manager.

By Sir Hardly Anyone

It has been on my mind and troubling me somewhat: after the fearsome battering that Untold gave the blogettas and their allies at the Metro, Daily Excess, and other fish and chip holders, would there be any change now the window of transfers is dusted and done?

Would they perhaps stop being the Untrue Tales answer to Untold Arsenal?  Were they embarrassed by their exposure on Untold, or do they just shrug it off?  Or indeed do they sit there wondering how it is with (mostly) rather sensible and insightful articles on the state of Arsenal, the origins of the universe, and other such weighty matters, we get a million page views a month and they don’t?

Well, certainly they haven’t given up.  But there have been some curious changes.   The notion that you could judge the entire future of football from the first 90 minutes of the season was pretty well established prior to the 2015/16 campaign, and that is indeed where matters began.

But now, look at this:

Five games in, is predicting the Premier League top four already obvious?

Note the question mark.  Previously this would be absolute assertion.  But Caught Offside, a blogetta if ever there was one, asks the question!!!   Mind you they then give us the answer.

Arsenal to finish 2nd, Liverpool miss out

They helpfully tell us that Man U is “extremely flawed” and that Leicester won’t stay second.  That’s all right then.

Indeed even the transfer gibberish has been toned down about.

Arsenal boss Arsène Wenger to URGE board to splash the cash on £37m La Liga ace

You don’t even need to know the player is – what it interesting is that this story is that Mr Wenger is begging the board to make a bid.   The conventional propaganda is that it is Mr W who holds the purse and decides what’s what and refuses to buy.  How the world changes!

Meanwhile slightly back in the real world there is huge praise for both Laurent Koscielny and Gabriel Paulista and for once I’d agree with my scribbling chums.

Gabriel has played three games where no goals have been conceded.  He is 24, and that is a good age to be with his centre half partner having become an Ancient at 30.  Once more the manager seems to be able to pick defenders.

Caught offside also tell us perhaps a little less helpfully that Mourninho says after Chelsea he will live in London and the only club side he wants to manage is Arsenal.

I think we can move on from that one

Football roar meanwhile has the shortest ever article under the heading

Wellington Silva produced his best performance on English soil as Bolton Wanderers defeated Wolves yesterday.

The on-loan Arsenal winger was handed a full 90 by Bolton boss Neil Lennon and won high praise for his influence in the win.

So that’s that then.  Moving on.

“I Was Close To Arsenal Move In The Summer” £80,000-A-Week Star Confirmed

That’s from Football columnist, a blogetta I have not seen before, and it tells us that “On missing the Community shield against Chelsea, he said “It was a surprise and a disappointment, “Let’s say it [leaving] crossed my mind.”

He being Debuchy.

The French full-back is expected to be the subject of bidding war between Swansea, Everton and Valencia come January, as Debuchy closes in on a move away from the club. Former Newcastle man Mattieu Debuchy has registered just 15 appearances for the club since joining the club from Newcastle in July 2014 for a fee of 12 million pounds.

Of course quite a few blogettas and some newspapers like to do player ratings, and these are often a bit odd.  For example the Daily Mirror gives these among others for the saturday game.

  • Cech 7    Didn’t have much to do but there when needed
  • Bellerin 7 Two great blocks from Shaqiri and a big threat going forward.
  • Koscielny 7  Brings calm to the defence and almost scored a 30 yarder.
  • Coquelin 7  Excellent job breaking up play and crunching tackle led to first goal.
  • Cazorla 7 Involved in most of Arsenal’s best bits. Great to watch.
  • Ozil 7  Booked. Some lovely touches and great vision to set up Walcott’s opener.
  • Sanchez 7 Yet to score this season but came close three times.
  • Walcott 7  Scored one but could have had five.

That is a fairly boring analysis, not least because those guys got seven, whether they didn’t have much to do or were a big threat going forwards.

Apart from the fact that I disagree with some of the scores, what really struck me was that this type of little listing by numbers misses out on any tactical analysis.  Like the substitution near the end which put Arteta next to Coquelin and let Santi Cazorla roam free up the pitch.  Stoke didn’t quite get what was going on and it totally changed the shape of the game, and challenged them considerably.   One liners and giving out sevens don’t really do it for me.

Meanwhile that old bunch of inventive nonsense ohtobeagooner is out on its own.  They said,

Arsenal have been dealt a major injury blow ahead of their clash against Mark Hughes’ Stoke City side.

Now you may not have noticed this major injury blow, because the squad was just about as most people said it would be, but no, they insist there is a crisis.

Summer signing Vlad Dragomir who arrived from Romanian club ACS Poli Timisoara appears to have picked up a major injury while on international duty.The 16-year-old winger who can also operate as a central midfielder, caught the eye of Arsenal scouts, who have been seeking to revive our Hale End Academy by bringing in highly talented youngsters.

However, Dragomir who has been tipped for a big future at Arsenal seem to have caught the Gunners injury bug after he uploaded a picture of himself walking with crutches.

I can’t find any back up for this tale.  It might be true of course, but then again it might not.

On the doom and gloom injury front Squawka is always near the top and so it is today with

It’s believed that Arsenal’s Jack Wilshere will discover in the next two weeks whether or not he will need surgery to help fix his fractured leg, as reported by the Mirror.

As for the headline of the weekend try this one…

Arsenal should take us seriously.   Football roar

But no, thankfully Football roar is not asking anyone to take them seriously.  Instead they write…

Dinamo Zagreb defender Leonardo Sigali has warned Arsenal not to show any signs of complacency when they take on the Croatian outfit in the Champions League on Wednesday.

Dimano are full of confidence after a 4-0 win over Lokomotiva Zagreb in the Croatian league on Friday. Sigali, who scored in the victory over Lokomotiva, believes Dinamo are capable of causing an upset against the Gunners.

Jolly decent of them to tell us, I think.

But hey what’s this, the transfer window is up and running again???????

Arsenal lining up January move for Belgian STARLET

Arsenal are already planning ahead for the January transfer window, as The Metro reports that they are being linked to 18-year-old midfielder Youri Tielemans.

The Anderlecht starlet has been linked to multiple European clubs, and he has already shown star potential by playing in the Champions League at the tender age of 16.

Manager Arsene Wenger is reportedly keen on the 18-year-old midfielder, as the Gunners are in need of more midfield depth.

So there it is.  More midfield depth needed.  You read it here, well if not first, then second.

Or third.


14 September 2009: Eduardo’s two match ban for “deceiving the referee” was annulled after it was not established that the referee had been deceived.  The precedent of challenging, changing and then un-changing the referee’s decision was set.

14 September 2013: Arsenal went top of the league after 3-1 away win to Sunderland.  Game 9 in the sequence of the all-time record of away wins.  Giroud and Ramsey (2) got the goals.


21 comments to Arsène begs board to make bid, serious injury rumour, Mourinho next Arsenal manager.

  • peter drake

    i realy enjoyed that well done.

  • Dinamo unbeaten last year in croation league I believe

    Anyone take a draw now !

  • nicky

    The downmarket rags which publish made-up stories about Arsenal signings during every transfer Window, will always prosper while we supporters read their rubbish. We read it because ArsenalFC have always been so tight-lipped over transfer dealings.
    The answer?
    Arsenal to be a little more open with information. Not completely of course because of the fear of being out-bid in would-be signings by the sugar daddy clubs. But at least officially deny interest
    in players when that is clearly the case. 😉

  • Dazza64

    I don’t believe the club officially denying interest would not make any difference to the rubbish stories during the transfer window, the denial would just feed the story. The blogs and rags would just make up other ‘news” anyway.
    The certainty that is the only source of truth when I it comes to announcing transfers has a degree of comfort. I.e. One can ignore all the other noise in the clickbait world.

  • nicky

    You’re quite right of course.
    The problem is that 90% of supporters wanted to see a signing or two during the last Window and would read ANYTHING towards that end.
    Some tried but not surprisingly, there was such a nil
    return, that source was soon abandoned.
    As you imply, it’s just a question of separating wheat from chaff, however attractive, at first sight, the chaff appears to be. 😉

  • serge

    Let’s be honest, you’d have to be a pretty shallow sort of person to swallow the BS put out by the majority of football blogs.
    It’s just a nice little internet industry that’s been developed by a few clever bloggers to make some money.
    Is it really so terrible?

  • Mike Priest

    Nice article..I’ll give it 8 out of 10! on the subject of transfers when a player doesn’t want to move and his manager says he’s staying put and contracts have been extended for several years you can take that as a No. several such players including Benteke and Reus were massively over hyped as being available but it was all fibs. Advertising Revenues dictate these sites enough to make me wonder whether they have any interest in Arsenal at all? who’s betting? would like to have signed Martial though-What a phenomenon….

  • Andy Mack

    Jeorge Birds site is worth checking for the youth ‘situation’, injuries or otherwise.

    nicky, I agree with dazza64 that it’s better to say nothing about anything (transfer-wise) as the press will twist it around. Hopefully the hacks will one day start doing some research into rumours and will then grasp (and report) that the players agent is just trying to sort a better contract with his existing club, or some bloggeta is just making it up as click-bait. ……. Sorry that would need a modicum of intelligence on the hacks part, so that ain’t happening 😀

  • Goonermikey

    @ Judge

    There’s no place for over-confidence I know, but unbeaten or not, Dinamo play in a country where the second highest ranked team is 111th in Europe.

    Dinamo themselves are ranked only 80th. That’s 40 places behind Viktoria Plzen; 30 places behind Genk; 20 places behind Anji Mackhachkala; and 10 places behind Standard Liege.

    I wouldn’t suggest there’s an easy game in Europe but I’d be hugely disappointed if we didn’t pick up three points.

  • apo Armani

    @Sir Hardly Anyone

    Thanks again for the hack update!!

    Are we going to see any hacks come up with headlines to the tune of Chelsea are in Crisis…Moorrinhoo has flipped his lid and in CRiSIS – or do these type of headlines only apply to AFC? 🙂 🙂


    Well had it been the middle of winter and temperatures in the range of -5 to -15C , with a frozen pitch surface; would have certainly had an affect on our normal game. As it is The weather conditions and the pitch whilst not the Emirates – are both suitable for getting on and playing our style of football. I am not one for giving prognosis on outcomes, but would certainly expect AFC to come away from there with all 3 points. Anything else would be between surprise and shock. Perhaps the odds are very good for the latter if you are a betting man – assuming thats how you came up with: “Anyone take a draw now !” My answer is NO!

  • Jambug


    “Let’s be honest, you’d have to be a pretty shallow sort of person to swallow the BS put out by the majority of football blogs.”

    As true as you would think that is I’m afraid it’s not as simple as that.

    Being fed constant BS, as you rightly call it, is much the same as being fed constant propaganda. As ridiculous as what you are being told might be, if you are told it often enough, it becomes the truth.

    We had Benzema thrown down our throats all Summer.

    Was he or wasn’t he a target? Who knows?

    What I do know is that despite constant denials from Benzema himself and without a word of confirmation from Arsenal, it has become an accepted fact that he was a ‘target’ that Arsenal ‘missed out on’.

    So BS or not, it has become a fact.

    That’s how it works with the media.

  • Gord


    I think I started seeing it Saturday, but it has been in the news over the weekend, more so on Monday morning. Alongside stories about corruption at individual FAs, was the story that Mr. Clean (aka Septic Bladder) was the responsible party at FIFA who sold world (?) TV rights for 2010 and 2014 games to a certain Jack Warner for 5% of fair market value. (I’m clean, I’m clean.) In any event, some news outlets seem to think that is the piece of paperwork to get the USA investigation to add the septic one (I’m clean) to the list of people being investigated.

  • Menace

    Transfers! I was under the impression that any club wanting another’s player had to go to the owning club first for permission to communicate with the target. It seems that is all BS as clubs (apart from Arsenal & a few others) just get to the agent & instigate the transfer with clandestine communication.

    The FA (pathetic stakeholders of our game) seem to turn a blind eye to the poaching that is clearly going on. It is time for the FA to show its position or maybe it has? The chickens are scared of the money boys or could they be on the payroll?

    The other part of transfers that seem to be creating disgruntled players is the payment terms. These should be agreed before talks are allowed with the player.

  • Tom

    Dear Sir Hardly:)

    I can sort of see the logic in poking fun at the expense of other members of the media and their transfer fairytales, with the healthy dose of sarcasm ( I rather like that, sarcasm that is), but now that the transfer window is closed and even those with a double digit IQ have realized nothing can be done until January, maybe it’s time to ask Tony for another assignment.

    Perhaps the office could use a little tidying up, or a coffee machine needs a new filter.

  • blackfoox


    well, the article summaries what the media was talking about us, not just about transfer… Perhaps you should read the article for the fun of it 😀

  • Gord

    Canada’s sort of (not really) equivalent of the BBC is the CBC.

    Tony has talked about grassroots. The CBC has a Radio show which parodies the news, called This is That. They recently did a story about a school in Vancouver selling their playground and soccer field to developers, because the land prices were so high. Part of this sarcastic rendition, is that the soccer program was cancelled. The children didn’t mind, as it gave them more time to play with their phones.

    Have a good week people.

  • Josif

    I have to refer to this Sigali’s comment.

    You see, Dinamo have beaten their – pretty much – feeder club 4:0. In fact, Lokomotiva Zagreb are pretty much Dinamo II and other Croatian clubs have been complaining about how Lokomotiva can play in the same level as their – pretty much – parent club. Of course, there has been no replies to those complaints because Zdravko Mamić is the master of Croatian football.

    I’ve been watching Dinamo during their quest for Champions’ League Group Stage and all I can say is, if there are opponents Arsenal can afford a bit of complacency, it’s Dinamo.

    There was a funny game between Dinamo and Molde in Norway after the first game in Zagreb had ended 1:1. Michael Oliver was in charge. A lot of cards – including a second yellow for the hosts – and three penalties for Molde (two of which Norwegians missed) by Oliver, one of those penalties was wrongly given. Dinamo had had a three-goal-lead before conceding three goals (including an equalizer despite playing 11 on 10) due to terrible defending.

    Sigali himself is one of the worst defenders I’ve ever watched. If we decide to score goals tomorrow, it may turn out to be one of the biggest European victories for Arsenal. Dinamo have a few interesting talents – Marko Pjaca, Tomislav Rog and Ante Ćorić – but they should be delighted with every point they catch in Champions’ League.

  • Brickfields Gunners

    Step Back, I Know First-Aid !

    When a car skidded on wet pavement and struck a telephone pole, several bystanders ran over to help the driver. A woman was the first to reach the victim, but a man rushed in and pushed her aside. “Step aside, lady,” he barked. “I’ve taken a course in first-aid!”

    The woman watched for a few minutes, then tapped him on the shoulder. “Pardon me,” she said. “But when you get to the part about calling a doctor, I’m right here.”

  • Brickfields Gunners

    The Compliment-

    A man was reading the newspaper during breakfast and said to his wife, “Look at this. Another beautiful actress is going to marry a football player who’s a total dope!

    I’ll never understand why the biggest jerks get the hottest wives.”

    His wife said, ‘Thank you.’

  • Menace

    Brickfields – First Aid & Doctors. I was taught First Aid at a senior level by an ex army medic. They used a group of actors called the ‘Patients Union’. It was a brilliant course. During the course he also claimed to have done several surgical operations in the forests – more than most would do in a lifetime & that he had escaped from the Japanese playing dead. At the end of the course (in the presence of a Doctor) I asked the medic to play dead. It was mind boggling. The doctor used the stethoscope & could not find any signs of life in this (now purple) body & said that the body was ‘dead’. The medic returned to normal. It was truly one of the more intriguing experiences in my life.