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October 2016
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Arsenal were the best performing team over Christmas – at least for the moment

By Tony Attwood

Christmas – all done and dusted for another year.  So what happened?

The teams that did best over Christmas were both in north London – and indeed if Tottenham win or even draw their game in hand this afternoon they will be the most successful club this Christmas / New Year.  Tottenham are away to Everton at 4pm GMT.

So let’s look back…

It might seem a long time ago but this is how the league table looked before all this Christmas stuff happened.  In the form section the most recent result is on the right.

And the league table this morning.  The “Gain” column at the end shows the number of points out of 12 actually taken by each club.

* With one game to play to complete the holiday schedule.

The form guide is also interesting – just before the start of the Christmas rush we had three wins, two draws and a defeat in the last six.  Now it is five wins and one defeat in the last six.   Indeed the form guide on the table is interesting in Tottenham’s case too – their current burst of form coincides completely with Christmas, which is why a win will not change their league position at all.

Indeed if one were to look at the whole league table and thus pick up the results of the smaller clubs like Chelsea, we would see that no team (apart from Arsenal) has won more than three in the last six.  A win for Tottenham would give them four wins one draw and one defeat in the last six.

Chelsea have in fact gained five points over the holiday period, with one game to play, this afternoon against Crystal Palace.

But of course it is not enough for Arsenal.  Writing on the BBC web site today Alan Shearer says, “Another centre-forward, a defensive midfielder and a centre-half should all be on Arsene Wenger’s list but the difficult thing for Wenger is to find a way of doing that in the middle of the season to improve his team.”

Which by and large says, Wenger cocked it all up because he didn’t buy right last summer.   He should have brought in a top centre forward and then not played him – or risked having Giroud lose all form by him not being played.  He should have known that Coquelin would be injured and with that amazing forewarning he could have told one of Europe’s top defensive midfielders that he needed to come to Arsenal because Coquelin would be injured, “just you wait and see – but sit on the bench for a while, OK?”

Oh yes, and the best defence in the football league needs a new centre half.   As well as Brazil international Gabriel who is patiently waiting it out.  So this new guy would either break up the best defence of 2015 in the country, or have to wait his turn behind Gabriel.

In truth, that the man is utterly bonkers has been suspected for some time, but surely this must take us to a new level.  (My suspicion is that these “expert” chaps just repeat what the last “expert” said.  But that can’t be so, can it?  I mean, surely not!)

While it is true that the defeat to Southampton was awful to watch, the fact is that many teams get a hammering once in a while, and if you are going to let in four it is most certainly better to do that all in one game, rather than spread out over four games.

The BBC also used a super computer to help it find out what each club should do.  It is, according to their web site, “SAM the Super-Computer – a sports analytics machine built at the University of Salford  – which uses player information to predict the outcome of a match.  By replacing a player on a team with an alternative, SAM can predict the result of a match as if the incoming man actually played – and is therefore able to tell us how teams will benefit (or not) from any possible business.”

Sometimes Sam just tells players to work harder.  Its prognostication with Liverpool is, “If Daniel Sturridge was fit, Liverpool would gain less than one point. According to SAM, the players they have in their squad should be covering for him. Between Christian Benteke, Roberto Firmino and Philippe Coutinho, they should be scoring the goals he would be expected to score.”

The Man City commentary by the computer is interesting too.

“The player that SAM has identified that City are most in need of is a defensive central midfielder. Signing Paul Pogba will get City an extra 4.3 points. But a very interesting observation is that the top Premier League teams gain little from new players arriving in January – typically an increase of less than one league point. Manchester City basically only significantly improve if they sign Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo…and that is highly unlikely to happen.”

So, actually all the Shearer chit chat was meaningless.  A purchase now won’t give us more than a single point more.

Here’s SAM on Chelsea: “If Chelsea were to finally get their man and sign defender John Stones from Everton, SAM does not expect an increase in their expected points tally this season. Of course, the impact in future years may make the signing worthwhile – John Terry cannot go on forever!”

And for Tottenham it is pretty much what you might expect.

“Losing Harry Kane, and not replacing with a player of similar quality would produce a massive effect on the expected points tally for Tottenham – a drop of around 12 points. This is the biggest impact any one player has had on a team.”

So there you are, Tottenham are making exactly the same error as Arsenal in not having suitable backups.  It could be that in both cases the manager is either a turnip or some other branch of the root vegetable family.  Or it could just be that it is not as easy as a bunch of journalists sitting in a pub making up stories actually likes you to believe it is.

Oh, and just one other thing.  What does SAM say about Arsenal.   Here it is in full.

”                                                                              ”

Yep, nothing.  There is nothing we can do to improve, apart from being idiotic in the Shearer mould, and telling us to buy players because a) of pre-cognition, and b) convincing the players the manager is a pretty decent fortune teller.

Sending the apology by horse – the anniversaries

  • 3 January 1998: Arsenal 0 Port Vale 0 (FA Cup round 3 – the first cup game of the second Double.)   The second double: part 1, part 2, part 3.
  • 3 January 1999: Sir Alex Ferguson’s notorious speech published in Sunday Times in which he claimed Arsenal were responsible for numerous fights on the pitch in what was the most blatant piece of public ref-fixing seen thus far.  Ferguson claimed he then apologised, but Arsène Wenger said, “If he sent an apology it must have been by horse”.

A better song for Ozil (sorry old link broke – new link now in place)

The Insult for the day is now on the home page

53 comments to Arsenal were the best performing team over Christmas – at least for the moment

  • Brickfields Gunners

    If only all the experts , ostriches and ‘them’ would say , ” .” , the world would truly be a better place indeed ! Play it again , SAM !

  • Brickfields Gunners

    What do you think , ” .” , meant ?

    Take you pick –

    ” Well-timed silence hath more eloquence than speech.”- Martin Farquhar Tupper.

    ” Silence is the sleep that nourishes wisdom.” -Francis Bacon.

    ” Silence is argument carried out by other means.” – Che Guevara.

    ” Silence is a true friend who never betrays.” – Confucius.

    “In the End, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends. ” -Martin Luther King, Jr.

    ” Nothing strengthens authority so much as silence.” -Leonardo da Vinci

    My choice/guess would be – “Silence is better than unmeaning words.” -Pythagoras

  • Brickfields, I hope you are enjoying the new series of Insult of the Day. There’s a new one on the home page this morning.

  • Tai

    Top post, as always, Tony.

    The ‘pundits’ are getting smashed all over the place the way this season’s EPL results have been embarrassing the big spenders. And the more they(pundits) ignore to give Arsene Wenger his due respect the harder they get embarrassed.

    Wenger had money to spend …but he bought just Petr Cech and returned the rest to the vault. They called him names, said he’d crash before mid-way and all others. But the stubborn French laughed at them. He knew he had a team that won the FA Cup and Community Shield back-to-back intact and knew their quality. He knew his team has vastly improved with the emergence of Coquelin and Bellerin. Above that, Monreal had left good to being world class. And he knew Ozil’s best was coming.

    Le Prof knew as well that the most important activity during the transfer window is keeping all the players you do not want to lose. He’s an old fox…so he understood perfectly the magic of team chemistry and dressing room harmony. He didn’t want to unsettle that by signing a player like Vidal…that would mean ‘killing’ Ramsey…and tilting that team chemistry.

    He knew there’d be injuries but he was prepared to raise replacements within his fold, fight like a unit…instead of importing ‘world class’ and have a half-spirited squad.

    In all Wenger has proven the master of the game so far. Against Man City, the most balanced squad, according to pundits, Arsenal lined-up without three certain starters in Sanchez, Coquelin and Carzola…and a probable starter in Welbeck and Wilshere…plus two sure impact subs in Arteta and Rosicky. Man City was missing just a certain starter in Vincent Kompany…and a probable in Pablo Zabletta. The result we all know.

    If Arsenal could play six matches without all seven players and winning five of them within the hectic period…why can’t these ‘pundits’ acknowledge Wenger’s as a genius so far?

    But they won’t…because he didn’t spend 30 million pounds signing Coquelin or Bellerin…neither did he sign another striker and kept Walcott in the wings. But there’s just one way to shut them all up – win this title. Go Wenger Go!

  • John

    Wenger imported world class in Cech and he won us the game yesterday.The worrying thing for me is that our goalkeeper was MOM yesterday at home against a relegation team.As games go on we are going to miss coq more and more as newcastle ripped through our midfield with ease.Barcelona wont be so forgiving in front of goal.And he will be labeled a genius if we dont drop away like we have in previous years.

  • Usama Zaka


    I see, today its from Taming of the Shrew. I remember in our grade 7 in school we had to study this book for the Literature subject. Well our minds were too sleepy and loaded with various subjects for us to read to this too at that time. 🙂

  • Pat

    Insult of the Day a great innovation, Tony. A great laugh. I must remember to look each day before logging on to an article.

  • Jambug


    Excellent post.

    “…why can’t these ‘pundits’ acknowledge Wenger as a genius so far?”

    Why indeed?

    I mean they don’t even have to say he’s a genius. Just a little contrition would help. Just a small acknowledgement that they might actually have got it wrong and Wenger got it right.

    But no.

    They started pre season thus:

    ‘Arsenal will struggle to even make the top 4 if they don’t buy a Defender, Midfield monster and World class striker.

    Now that’s been proved to be utter b*****ks it’s moved to:

    ‘Arsenal wont win the Title if they don’t buy a defender, Midfield monster and World class striker.

    And that despite the fact we’ve been the best side in the year 2015.

    And that despite being top of the table right now.

    And that despite the best defence in 2015.

    So now we’ve somehow gone from a side that will struggle to make the top 4, to a team that will of ‘blown it’ if they don’t win it.

    And all that without signing a single player the ‘experts’ said we should. Well maybe one in Cech.

    So you’d think there would at least be a little acknowledgement as to how well Arsenal have done, wouldn’t you?

    So you’d think there would be at least a little acknowledgement as to how Wenger may of actually been right and they wrong, wouldn’t you?

    Not a bit of it.

    Where we are in the table has in fact got NOTHING at all to do with Arsenal, the players or most definitely not Wenger.

    Nope, it’s all down to the others being shite apparently. And remember they’re shite despite having massive squads worth £100’s of Millions and full of some of the most expensive players in the World.

    Players you’ll recall that the experts all heartily agreed where fantastic signings when they where made.

    Not only that, remember many of these signings, that are now apparently shite, are players the experts not only trumped as ‘top’ signings when they where made, but often as not they where signings Wenger should of made.

    But somehow they conveniently seem to forget all that.

    It is truly pathetic.

    Reading guys such as Reade and Howard, and listening to the likes of Sheerer, Scholes, Owen you really do despair. These people are so entrenched in there hatred of Wenger it beggars belief.

  • Al

    Excellent analysis. It appears people like shearer are not aware we have 7 starters missing through injury. It’s like them saying City need to sign another centre half because Kompany is injured, would that make sense? Spending another £30m or so because their centre half is out for 6 weeks! Like Tony said, these ‘pundits’ just repeat what the last one said, with no view on context at all, a la ‘the jury is still out’ Moyes.

    On a different note I’m really concerned that we will not be allowed to win this title by the pgmob, after the standard of officiating witnessed yesterday. Some of the free kicks awarded to Newcastle had to be seen to be believed. They were outrageous, and krul started wasting time in the first half till the time we scored our goal with nothing done by the ref. I also recall an incident where Arsenal were awarded an offside against Newcastle and Taylor prevented us from taking a quick kick, for no apparent reason. He kept kind of gesturing towards the linesman preventing Monreal and Kos from taking the kick, to allow Newcastle players to get back. Cech took the resultant kick in the end, when the most advanced Newcastle player was near the halfway line. If that’s not pitch-tilting then I don’t know what is.. we never allowed to build any sort of momentum till the last 15 minutes or so (interesting that it was after we scored, guess the view was to no longer slow the game as Newcastle desperately needed an equaliser).

    On the contrary I recall Newcastle taking two very quick corners (not sure there’s any rule that says this can’t be done) before we could get even 3 or 4 players in the box. It was blatant bias to say the least. And I thought our home crowd was disappointing, not making a lot of noise, with many either quiet or whingeing. They did whistle or boo against the soft free kicks though, and krul’s time wasting.

    I think we will be seeing a lot more performances like yesterday’s from the officials, now that they realise city are the only traditional top 4 side still in the title race with us; they’re going to try and stop us, starting at Liverpool! and Stoke. The script is written, very evident on yesterday’s display.

  • Jambug


    There you are.

    Are you back to answer the questions I posed yesterday or just to moan again?

  • Jambug


    January 3, 2016 at 11:03 am


    In case you have forgotten this is from yesterday.

    To this statement of yours,

    “Stats can be misleading”?

    I asked:

    a) Explain that please.

    To this statement of yours,

    “What you might class as a foul some might think is a fair challenge”

    I asked:

    b) Yes, a lot of decisions are subjective, but I am not a current or ex referee, as I doubt are you. Most, if not all of the guys that do the referee reviews are either current or ex referees, so are much more likely to evaluate each incident with a better perspective than you or I would, do you not agree? And lets be honest, subjective or not that hardly explains the enormous weight in bias against Arsenal does it? Or do you think Andrew and the others are really THAT biased? perhaps your next statement suggests you do.

    To this statement of yours,

    “And we know that everyone has a bias towards their own team.”

    I asked this:

    c) So your not calling Andrew a liar, just biased, very biased, which is much the same thing is it not?

    And this:

    d) And by the way, as you may or may not be aware, a couple of years back untold used a selection of non Arsenal supporting ex and current Referees to do the assessments, and the bias against Arsenal was even worse. Can you explain that?

    Just mark your answers a) b) c) and d) please.

    No rush.

    And there was also this from Andrew:

    I started following Walter’s articles I refereeing six or seven years ago because he was the one commentator who’s writings actually were in accordance with what I was seeing on the pitch. Not everyone sees the same things or draws the same conclusions. I would ask you to pay particular attention to this afternoon’s game and note any decisions you agree or disagree with, together with a record of the time of the incident. I am more than happy, in due course when the ref review is published, to have a discussion with you over the validity of our review and your interpretations of the same events.”

    I look forward to seeing your answers and of course to reading your very own referee review.

    Again, no rush.


  • Jambug


    “Wenger imported world class in Cech and he won us the game yesterday. The worrying thing for me is that our goalkeeper was MOM yesterday at home against a relegation team.”

    This is what I don’t get.

    We have a World class keeper that won us the game and that worries you. Why?

    Surely that’s what you want from your World class keeper isn’t it? Isn’t that something to be happy about rather than worry about?

    Okay, Newcastle are not a top side, but conversely they are not a bad side either. And alright we didn’t play great.

    So what, it happens.

    You make your judgements and express your worries as if no other team has these days.

    City, Chelsea, United, Liverpool, Spurs ALL have days when they play bellow par against what is on paper an inferior side.

    So what, it happens.

    Surely the most important thing is that on such a day you dig out a result.

    For years I’ve been hearing how when others doing this it is a ‘sign of Champions’ and yet when we do it is seen as something to worry about.

    If it’s perfection you’re after then I’m sorry your going to be very disappointed, and that is whoever you support.

    Sorry I just don’t get people like you at all

  • blacksheep63

    indeed Tony, in fact “all the Shearer chit chat was meaningless” should be MoTD’s motto

  • Mandy Dodd

    All pundits seem to be able to talk about regarding Arsenal is who we should sign. Almost as if some of them are getting backhanders from agents…….
    Insult of the day, excellent idea……love today’s example from the Bard himself. Would also be interested to see some of the insults some of the AAA send in, suspect they would be very telling about their authors, but can also see why you don’t publish them

  • Mandy Dodd

    Also, Shearer should have recognised how many points one of this summers signings has got us….even John Terry had something favourable to say on that, and this signing was undoubtelly part of Jose’s sulk/meltdown.
    Of course it is not so easy to quantify how many points a keeper gets you over a year, but I suspect Cech greatly helped out yesterday and in other games
    Think SAM should note the work of Untold and examine how many points refereeing decisions gain/cost each team, that would make interesting reading in the MSM

  • Brickfields Gunners

    @ Tony AttwoodJanuary 3, 2016 at 8:29 am – Am positively loving it ! Not having done literature in school as I was in the science stream (booriinnngg !) , I always loved to hear it quoted either by my friends or in plays or in movies .

    Just noticed it very recently , so I may have missed a few . Please keep it complied on the site for easy and quick reference and for reuse to bash ‘them’ with !

    And you could always ask nicky for suitable quotes in Latin – the lingua franca of the Albion during his school days ! That ought to be a riot !

  • Josif

    I would just like to remind honest people of Untold that Cech is not the first goalkeeper who saved our bacon against Newcastle lately. In fact, David Ospina did it last year at St James Park.

    Why I mention this? Cech is the greatest of all times but we have another excellent keeper on the bench who will hopefully get a chance against Sunderland next week.

    We should not be worried by the fact goalkeeper had to save us, I would have been worried if we hadn’t had one to do so.

    Shearer is a moron. Add three top players to any team in England and they will perform better. He is actually paid to come up with conclusions like that one? And I thought tea with milk is a strange British habit. :p

    We do need someone like Coquelin though. I like The Flame but his legs are not what they used to be (back in 2008, Untold had claimed Flamini benefited from playing next to Cesc but…maybe it was vice versa?). ElNenny looks like an Arsenal player, silky touch, passing and work-rate. Kudos to Arsene for respecting Basel and the fact ElNenny is still under contract with Basel.

  • JohnW

    All we need is to increase our goals scored column,buy Arsene having a little word with Ramsey, to remember to pass the ball to someone in better positions to score. Then we would have a real battle on our hands, Ramsey vs Ozil. Imagine!I would then enjoy it more, having the likes of Shearer eat humble pie. By the way, isn’t he the one who had New Castle relegated? So much for knowing it all!

  • bjtgooner

    SAM the Super Computer is an interesting concept – but do the BBC have to resort to this machine because they are brain dead? (Was that an insult? 🙂 )

    But I don’t think “SAM” could hold an electronic candle to the wonderful analytical mind belonging to AW!

    We have had quite a good points accrual over the festive season, with a tired team, which could not be rotated quite as much as AW would have liked – simply because of the accumulation of injuries. Having said that, I have admired the way AW has used his slender resources (re substitutions and limited rotation) during this period.

  • Thanks for the nice comments about Insult of the Day. It’s funny, these ideas come up, and then I agonise for weeks about whether anyone will like the notion or not, whether anyone will bother to read…

    It was the same with the Anniversaries – started out as a little idea, now we can have 10 or more anniversaries a day, to give plenty of choice as to which one to put under an article. There are over 4500 anniversaries in the file now, and I very nearly didn’t go ahead and start that notion.

    Mind you, I’ve no idea what happens next.

  • Brickfields Gunners

    We have always had keepers that saved out bacon time and again . Anyone remember Jimmy Rimmer’s heroics for us in 1974-75 ? He and the goals of Brian Kidd took Arsenal away from the foot of the table . Both of course were European Cup winners with Man Utd in 1968.
    Arsenal ended up 16th . Spurs ? 19TH ! Some things don’t ever change !
    And Man Utd ? Well , I thought you’d never ask ! They were champions ….of the 2nd division !

  • Mick

    A very wise man once said, “it is better to let people think you are stupid than to open your mouth and prove you are stupid”

  • Jambug


    “Imagine!I would then enjoy it more, having the likes of Shearer eat humble pie.”

    Alas, I fear no matter what happens the chances of Sheerer and the like ever eating Humble Pie are zero.

    The notion is already being fostered that should we indeed win the PL, it will be more down to the failings of others than anything to do with ourselves.

    Humble Pie? Fat chance JohnW.

  • Jambug

    I’m currently watching Kevin Friend do his best to gift Chelsea a win, and of course the SKY commentators agreeing with every shite decision he makes.

  • Gord

    When I think insults, what came to mind is a song. May the Bird of Paradise Fly Up your Nose (Little Jimmy Dickens?).

    Alan Shearer, may an elephant caress you with his toes.

  • goonersince72

    Great Work Tony! It’s a very good Christmas period showing. Like a lot of Untolders I absolutely love the Insult of the Day being a lifelong fan of the Bard. Greatest writer of all time in any language. Any time you have a notion, please try it, the results are always worthwhile. I also love the History and On This Date pieces. Keep them coming! Re the experts; as I said yesterday, ‘boring, boring experts’. There will be no change. If we win the Double they will say it was because everyone else were playing with broken legs or some other such shite. Here at Untold Arsenal the writers and posters are not insane so why do we expect a different result from the media and ‘experts’? Up the Arsenal!

  • John

    In reply to your last long winded post i repeat that stats can be misleading in sport and what you and a few on here think is a right decision many might not agree.I can see with my own eyes whats happening in games the same as well as someone who is an ex referee.I will acknowledge that sometimes we are on the wrong end of some real howlers by referees as what happened at stamford bridge,but we have taken advantage of some that have gone in our favour.Referees are humans and without technology are prone to mistakes.
    And now in return i will ask you a few quetions.
    1.Name me a referee that is a cheat?
    2.There must be a motive why hes a cheat.What is it?
    3.Who is telling him to cheat and who is paying him?
    4.Is it just Arsenal they are told to cheat against ?And which teams do they want to win the league and why?

    Oh and i do worry sometimes when our world class goalkeeper is mom at home against one of the favourites for relegation.We were exeptionally poor yesterday like we have been against west ham,Zagreb,olympiakos,shef wednesday,byern munich,west brom,southampton and newcastle.I can be full of praise when we are playing well and are on our game but i can also be critical and blame the team and manager when it warrants.Unlike a hand full on here who will blame referees ,opposition players ,injuries ,opposition managers ,pundits, the press and the stadium.

  • Mick

    ‘I can be full of praise when we are playing well’
    Don’t kid yourself. Nine times out of ten you will find a negative, no matter how good the performance.

  • bjtgooner


    Can you explain your understanding of the term “cheat”?

  • John

    Why dont you ask the majority of posters on here who regularly use it when we get beat or perform badly.

  • Pat

    Glad you reminded us about the anniversaries, Tony. I’ve just read the one about SAF, Arsene Wenger and the horse. Very enjoyable!

    I’ve forgotten what your proposal was about the Ozil song. Is it to sing Ozil la la la la la la la la to the Brazil tune? If so, I like it!

  • Gord

    I was disappointed with Crystal Palace losing to Chelsea, but as I wasn’t watching the game, ….

    I’m hoping for Everton to win.

    But, in reading the news via Google this morning, I am dismayed.

    Let’s say Wenger gives an interview.
    Wenger: Hello, thank you for coming.
    Journalist 1 thinking: he just said he bid on Ronaldo.

    Wenger: Do you have any questions for me?
    Journalist 2: Who was injured in the last game?
    Journalist 3 thinking: he just said that Arsenal are bringing in a new 16 year old from Kazakhstan.

    Wenger: Nobody was injured in the last game.
    Journalist 4 thinking: he just said that Wilshere was being sold to Juventus.

    And so on.

  • Jambug


    Very good at avoiding answering questions and moaning.

    Not so good at answering questions or praising.

    Here’s another question for you to avoid.

    If you disagree so vehemently with the underlying beliefs of this site.

    If you think the founders and assessors are biased.

    If you think the posters are all so misguided.

    Why on earth do you come here?

    Call that question e)

    Just stick it in a post with your answers to a, b, c, and d, along with your referees assessment of yesterdays game.

    No rush.

  • bjtgooner


    You are the one that seems to lack clarity and logic – therefore my question is to you (hoping to increase an understanding of your reasoning process) so – “please explain what you understand by the term “cheat””.

  • From what I can see John has asked some decent questions regarding cheating and referees I would be very interested to here some views on them as I must admit I struggle to come up with a sensible answer myself yet I see referees and officials making errors week after week

  • Tai

    Jambug, Al, others…

    Thanks for the compliments.

    I watched Everton vs Spurs…great match…and let’s say it when due – Spurs are good. But as some ‘pundits’ are saying that they have a strong chance for the title simply because they’ve lost only two matches, my little knowledge of arithmetic says…3 pts for a win, 1 for a draw…and despite losing only twice, Spurs are still six points behind Arsenal that lost four so far. Do these ‘pundits’ ever recall that you get maximum three points for a win and that Arsenal lead the win grade with 13 so far?

  • Pete

    John (and Tom Q) – Many historic articles on here addressing all your questions regarding refereeing bias…

  • Strus

    Team/ gained points during Chirtmas period/ sum of expected points for eurocluindex
    Man City 7 7,55
    Man Utd 4 7,71
    Arsenal 9 8,48
    Chelsea 8 7,71
    Liverpool 6 7,02
    Tottenham 10 6,87

    So Spurs got most points and in the same time they overachieved

  • Jambug


    You have not answered ONE of the questions.

    All you did was repeat (on your own admission) that stats can be misleading. I didn’t ask you to just repeat your opinion, I asked you to give an explanation of that opinion.

    And just saying “I know what I see with my own eyes” is hardly an answer either is it?

    I asked you to explain how such a large cross section of current and ex referees, of both an Arsenal persuasion and not, have judged there to be such a massive refereeing bias against Arsenal.

    You haven’t offered an explanation for that at all except to suggest that they are ALL simply biased.

    So basically you didn’t answer a single question.

    Andrew challenged you to prove the next assessment wrong. I look forward to that.

    As for your questions. You haven’t earned the right to answers but I will give you them anyway. It’s quite long winded, and you don’t like long winded so I’ll give you the brief version. (Believe it or not this is the short version. I have posted the long version on here many times. People have committed suicide reading it). Luckily I don’t know where to find it but I assure you I have more than once given in depth explanations that would answer this question in full. This is the brief version.

    1.Name me a referee that is a cheat?




    to name the worst.

    2.There must be a motive why he’s a cheat. What is it?

    The media run our game. They depict who they want to win the league. Who they favour and the reasons as to why are varied and complicated, but fundamentally they are predominantly Financial, Historical and ingrained regional bias, as well as other reasons.

    3.Who is telling him to cheat and who is paying him?

    Personally I don’t believe anybody is telling any particular referee to ‘cheat’. It is much subtler than that. The referees can and do get demoted after a poor performance. Not a poor performance as judged by you, I, or even PGMOL, but by how they are judged in the Media, who I believe are there judge jury and executioner. How SKY, BT, and Talksport etc etc judge them is all that matters to them, and indeed to PGMOL.

    They know no matter how badly they treat us they will NEVER get criticised by the media. In fact they are more likely to get praised for treating us badly. Just look at how the referee from Stamford Bridge, despite retrospectively being shown to of got it spectacularly wrong, Hardly faced a word of criticism and certainly never grecieved any punishment at all. If an equal amount of biased had been shown in our favour he would of been slaughtered.

    They know who there judge jury and executioners in the media DO want to win, and who they DON’T, so they referee in accordance to that, much as a matter of self preservation as anything else.

    I do not, and never have said, or believe, money is changing hands.

    4.Is it just Arsenal they are told to cheat against ? And which teams do they want to win the league and why?

    As I say, they are not necessarily ‘told’ per say, or though I wouldn’t put even that past Riley, but they are left in no doubt as to who they should be favouring and who they shouldn’t.

    ——Now they are answers. Whether you agree or not is up to you but at least I give you an explanation as to what I believe and why.

    Just saying ‘I know what I see with my own eyes’ or that everyone you don’t agree with is simply ‘biased’ does not constitute an answer.

  • Tai

    I doff my hat Jambug…your last post.

    I always believed Cesc fabregas left Arsenal because he never wanted his career to end prematurely. Wenger succeeded in building Arsenal around Cesc…and all teams did to stop us was kick the hell out of the young Spaniard. Two seasons before he left, Fabregas was the most fouled player in the EPL…and he never got protection…after first half of seasons, Cesc usually bowed to accumulated kicks and Arsenal’s season plummet.

    Today, same player in Chelsea colours hardly misses long term on injuries.

    I only pray that now Ozil is the new fulcrum of Arsenal’s play that these mean officials don’t turn his way.

    Soory to add John…whoever doesn’t see the atrocities referees commit against Arsenal match after match is the one biased beyond belief.

  • Mick

    Excellent response to the suddenly gone quiet John.
    I do not expect him to give a sensible, reasoned reply, his type never have in the past and are unlikely to do so in the future.
    John is a troll pure and simple, he tries to disguise the fact by pretending to be the only adult in the room but he doesn’t fool me, nor I suspect most of the regulars on this site.

  • Al

    Jambug 7:07pm

  • Al

    What a response, should shut John and his fellow naysayers up for a while. ..

  • John

    I havent avoided answering questions from you and i didnt realise that on here, which is a messageboard where we all have opinions, that i had to agree with all the blogs and posts.I go on many arsenal and neutral messageboards where i can voice my opinion as can you.Would you go on any and post some of your comments which you put on here??Probably not as you would get more critism than i have on here.Your posts wouldnt be put in moderation and be banned because of them though.
    Mick im not a troll and really do hope we can push on and win our first title in over a decade.Only time (and those dodgy refs) will tell.

  • omgarsenal

    John, in partial answer to your questions:

    1)There ARE officials who have been caught red-handed outside the EPL but because the FA and the authorities REFUSE to listen to anyone but the PIGMOB, they haven’t been bothered to really look at potentially suspicious behaviour of EPL officials, and that for me is cheating by definition.

    2)I personally don’t believe that outright bribery or financial impropriety happens all that often in the EPL BUT I do know, from first hand experience , that pressure of all sorts can be put on EPL officials to turn a blind eye to certain events and thus favour one or other team in a match. If you did once officiate you know this as well.

    3)Motivation to cheat or unduly influence a match can be due to any number of factors; an innate dislike of one team or preference for another, criminal pressure on him to fix the match, PIGMOB pressure on him to follow a certain approach when officiating a specific team(s), a need to increase his chances for promotion to the FIFA list (something very common in many countries), managerial menacing, either overtly or covertly (SAF), fear of ridicule and crowd pressure, or unspecified punishment from a nebulous source the official cannot easily identify but is there, etc.

    4)Payment of monies is almost always possible to trace and so is avoided by the corrupt, but favours exchanged for a certain style of officiating leading to an advantage for one team is more pragmatic and untraceable. A promotion to a superior status, a nice holiday in Majorca, even sexual favours can be made available. My former mentor told me about officiating in Rome. When he got to his hotel room, there was a Gina Lollobrigida look alike in a fur coat and nothing else sitting on his bed as the local welcoming committee! He claims he sent her out of his room but he never told me if it was before or after.

    5)In most cases, since it is organized crime that corrupts, the targeted teams may vary but Walter and others on UA have shown clearly that the incompetent officiating hurts AFC more than almost any other Club in the EPL and that has even been mirrored by some media pundits. They may be informed by the powers that be (Riley, the FA, FIFA, EUFA) or the criminal conspiracy that betting patterns have to be carefully mediated and manipulated and disguised in order to affect the game. In Italy it was the choice of officials, in the EPL it may be another approach.

    Who said you have any justification to blame anyone for what happens or happened in any game this season. Are you a top flight manager or have years of professional experience in Football. Blame is reserved for the owners,board and administrators of the Club and they don’t give a damn about your pointless opinion…..c’est la vie John!

  • Jambug

    Thanks for you support lads and well said yourselves.


    Wish you’d posted that earlier, you could of saved me a lot of effort 🙂

    Anyway, I’m done with John.

    Just another AAA sort that pops in, has a whinge, throws a few accusations about, then gets all defensive about his freedom to say what he likes, where he likes, when he cant find an answer.

    He’s not the first and he wont be the last.

  • Menace

    Well said Jambug.
    Praise to omgarsenal – such distinct wisdom is rare.

    Just watch the 50th & you will see cheat after cheat after cheat by Riley. PS if you don’t know 50th then visit a health clinic.

  • John

    That suits me fine .I wondered how long it would be before being labelled an AAA because i dont believe in conspiracy theorys about our club.I dare you and omgarsenal to put your latest posts on a neutral messageboard calling the referees and see how many agree with you compared to on here.And right on cue comes menace.Theres not much going on up stairs there.

  • WalterBroeckx


    A cheating ref? Riley in match 50. Now head of the referees…. LOL you couldn’t make it up in fact…

  • Chris


    don't you just love it when you read this :

    I am quoting from this piece :

    "Theoretically, Liverpool still have everything to play for this season.

    They are five (or eight) points off fourth place in the Premier League, travel to the Britannia in the Capital One Cup semi-final, first-leg, tomorrow, begin their FA Cup campaign at St James Park on Friday and have the last 32 of the Europa League waiting next month."

    They have EVERYTHING to play for

    Wow, 4th place is part of everything….

    Guess trophies are like goalposts…they keep changing place depending on who is doing the shooting

    Happy new Year everybody


  • Ray from Norfolk, Virginia

    Si la parole est d’argent, le silence est d’or.
    French saying, 19th century, best translated as:
    Speech is silver but silence is golden.


    “Speak if you have words stronger than silence, or remain silent” (a little known quote by EURIPIDES)

  • Ray from Norfolk, Virginia

    Sexual favors?
    As in hanky-panky involving SAF and rat-Riley for example?
    I am just kidding.
    I loved your post, not only the list, the whole comment.

  • Chrystom

    My worry is that once arsenal wins the league, it will become classed as worthless. Then the only trophy that matters will be champions league