By Tony Attwood
Of course defeats get me down. They always have, ever since I was a child supporting a very weak Arsenal team indeed.
But I learned, as I moved out of childhood, that you can’t let these things get at you. I can’t do anything about Arsenal’s performance; indeed I’m not sure I can do very much about what happens outside my immediate circle of friends, family, and work colleagues. I do try mental projection of the sort of future I’d like to see but I rather suspect I need to go on a course to get that sort of activity to work.
However I do have measures that help me, even if they don’t do much for Arsenal. Last night I went dancing in Lincolnshire, and there’s nothing like physical activity, laughs and fun with friends to get all the endorphins going.
Plus, checking the anniversaries for today I see that this is indeed a moment for much agonising about bad results. Indeed there’s even an article about how little it all means (see the link in the extract from the anniversary files, below)
Certainly the news of the defeat of the oil sheikdom of forced disappearances, state abductions, torture in custody, flogging and stoning which runs and pays for Man City brought some relief. 2-1 away to WBA might be upsetting, but a 4-1 home defeat to Liverpool! brought some relief from the news of a missed penalty and yet more injuries.
And indeed a peek between my fingers at the league table shows we are two points off the top, while still having “all those injuries”. Mind you, as I half managed to prove the other week, injuries don’t actually have too much to do with results. Liverpool! have a team’s worth and they managed to beat Flogging and Stoning at a stadium paid for by the long-suffering British taxpayer.
The fact that Russia’s oil money which funds Chelsea has also failed to give the club what all the press gave it before the season began (another league trophy) is rather reassuring too, for this season is starting to suggest that money doesn’t automatically buy a club the league title – which is clearly what State Torture City and Millhouse LLC both imagined to be the case.
So, some relief in such thoughts, but perhaps the most promising line of recovery, other than a sturdy walk around Rutland Water proposed in my household for lady on today, was the news that Fifa’s ethics committee are on the rampage.
I’ve put forward before the notion that Fifa is rather like the Soviet Union, but without the deep sense of humour, but I might have to change that view if the news coming out that the German judge Hans-Joachim Eckert is about to call Blatter and Platini to his headmaster’s study in the next few days to tell them about the proposed sanctions against them.
The investigatory arm of Eckert’s committee, is it suggested in Switzerland, is trying to get both men banned for four years over the fraudulent payment of £1.35m which came on top of the £203,465 a year salary. There’s a lovely explanation that suggests that the two had a gentleman’s agreement over the £1.35m, but that rather falls down because a gentleman’s agreement does require at least one gentleman to be present.
The defence that Fifa could not afford to pay Platini despite its profits, rather raises the question of what it did with the £78m made over the previous four years. Spent it on bribes I suppose. Anyway it is mismanagement of Fifa, conflict of interest, false accounting and noncooperation with the ethics committee which make up much of the case.
What happens next will be a personal hearing by the dead-men-walking before Judge Eckert. In a possible lovely season of goodwill present to all anti-Fifarians everywhere both men could be banned before Christmas.
Of course Blatter, even when taken ill, is never one to rest from his remorseless scheming, plotting, planning, corruption and general collusion with his lapdogs such as the English Football Association. His latest wheeze is to suggest he will step down quietly if in return he could take on the role of honorary adviser to the next Führer, which he would graciously accept.
Meanwhile our old chum Sol Campbell has started to say that Fifa to be disbanded altogether. We always knew Sol was a Gooner, but the idea he might read Untold too, is most welcome.
So I approach another day without the gloom that might be expected, knowing also that two more defeats in the Champs League won’t upset me too much either. Indeed I even broke into a smile on reading the Telegraph’s headline this morning: Winston Reid: West Ham will ‘overtake’ Tottenham
Now if your club’s ambitions are to “overtake Tottenham” where are you in the world?
I’ll be at the game of course on Tuesday, and of course I want an 8-0 victory with no injuries. But I’ll also be at Latimer Park, home of Burton Park Wanderers, to see Kettering Town against Poole Town next weekend (Kettering being homeless and so ground sharing with Burton Park). When my family moved out of north London we moved to Dorset, and Poole was the local club, so my dad and I alternated between watching them and Bournemouth and Boscombe Athletic, when we couldn’t make the long trek back to Highbury.
No matter what happens to the Arsenal this week, such a trip will bring about a certain sense of proportion.
Premier Division League Table
|8||King’s Lynn Town||19||9||2||8||24||23||1||29|
The anniversaries of note
22 November 2010: Following irate comments after a defeat to Tottenham, the History Society looked back at other “disasters” – showing that a number of poor results can precede spectacular success.
22 November 2014. The press made much of Arsenal’s “poor start” to the season of four wins, three defeats and five draws thus far. Cazorla and Giroud scored, and matters turned around thereafter with five wins and a draw in the next six.
The Untold Books
Woolwich Arsenal the club that changed football, is now available on Kindle at £9.99. For more details and to buy a copy please click here or go to Amazon Kindle and search for Woolwich Arsenal.