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October 2016
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75% of the season done: Carnage and Hope


By Fishpie

Ok, gotta admit the third quarter of the 2015/16 season did not, in any way whatsoever, turn out  like the script.

Much anger, abuse and “told you so’s” have been hurled at our team, and mainly by us. And really Untolders, who can blame us?

I know that every single one of those who are AKB’s, despite their immense loyalty to the greatest of all our managers, will have, over the last two weeks, either cursed him out loud or inwardly moaned, “Arsene, Arsene, Arsene, why, oh why, oh why?” I have no evidence. But if you say you didn’t even feel a heightened sense of frustration over the last few weeks (months), absolutely no-one will believe you, and your sanity will be questioned.

It’s only human to be angry if you are driven to it. And we have been driven to it. At the very least you will have found yourself questioning your faith when, even in the most favourable of circumstances, yes even then, your hero appears unable to deliver. And if you did feel anger and question your faith, you will be forgiven. It’s ok.

Now, some of you, after an hour or two, maybe a day or two, will have centred yourself, calmed the storm and found the deep well of faith once again. You are, for sure, better followers than me.

I think, however, we may all suspect that the number of AKB’s dwindled over the winter and possibly, this time, by a significant amount. I have no evidence. It just adds up. You can’t expect to retain loyalty forever if you cause so much frustration every year by not meeting expectations. Even if you do deliver the FA Cup. Even if you did buy Ozil. Even if your die-hard fans don’t prioritise trophies as such but are happy just supporting what you stand for and how you go about doing things. In the end, the missed opportunities stack up and tip the balance. I may be wrong but things do shift in time. Patience runs out.

January, February and early March could well turn out to be the period of the season that did for us this season and it may be the moment too when only Arsene’s most ardent band of followers are left standing.

You, of all fans, deserved better from him and his team this season. You’ve been as disappointed as anyone I’m sure but in your chosen pro-Wenger position, you’ve also had to dig deeper and support him regardless. A tough ask.

So in honour of you who are still left standing, I am going to try and see the silver linings that linger.

The first silver lining is that we might argue the season is still retrievable. You’re right, it is. At least, on paper.

This season has seen Arsenal’s worst points tally for this wintery quarter of the season since 2005-06 when we won just 14 points. This year we only achieved 13 points, dropping 17.

Those 17 dropped points have put us 8 points behind Leicester with 9 games to go.

Unfortunately in the last 10 years, no-one has won the league from that far behind. In fact only 2 of the last 10 years has seen an eventual champion coming from behind at all at this point of the season. In 2011/12, with 9 games to go and one point behind, Man City went on to become Champions. They repeated that feat again in 2013/14 when they had been 3 points behind at this stage.

Luckily, this season has stuck two fingers up at all the precedents of the past 10 years so maybe it’s still possible.

So if we just keep to the precedent of this season alone, and assume that Leicester maintain the form they’ve shown so far (W 59% D 31% L 10%), they will win 5, draw 3 and lose 1 of their remaining 9 matches and thus drop 9 points. Arsenal will therefore have to win all of their remaining games in order to catch up the 8 points we are behind and gain the 1 extra point we need to win the League.

Some still cling onto the hope that Leicester, despite only having been beaten three times this season so far (ironically twice by us), may just collapse. And if they were to get an early set back in the next few games and begin to sense the smell of a chasing pack, the Foxes might just start to feel the pressure in a way that haven’t so far.

It’s still a tall order, especially with our remaining fixtures. But maybe coming from behind suits us best. Getting written off may galvanise us and give us an advantage. The expectation has dropped somewhat and maybe that will help us feel we now have nothing to lose.

Certainly the spirit we showed at Spurs when our backs were against the wall will be needed for the rest of the season if we are to make a go of it. That spirit came from somewhere. It was there for Spurs to kill us off before the game started and we resisted. And we resisted again when Le Coq got himself sent off. Hopefully Mr Wenger can tap into the drive we found for that match.

You may not believe me when I say that I hope, for Untolders and AKB’s more than anyone, that Mr Wenger delivers this miracle and we lift the Premiership trophy. And of course, there’s still the FA Cup, even if, in this year of higher hope, it may, for some, feel like a consolation prize.

The second silver lining that occurs to me is based on the notion that what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.

If it proves to be beyond us and we don’t make up quite enough ground this season, experiencing the run-in chase nonetheless, and pushing hard for the top spot will give this team the collective experience of what it takes to really fight for the trophy and, in so doing, learn how to handle the pressure. And that could be very useful for next season. This will be the case especially if Arsene stays in his job, as he almost certainly will.

With Arsene still in charge, Arsenal players will not only have to deal with their own nerves and the pressure of trying to play well against tough teams (tougher teams if Chelsea, Man U and Liverpool re-arm and re-engage), they will also have to deal with the increasing pressure of their own fans.

I don’t blame fans for having expectations nor do I blame them for venting their anger when their expectations are not satisfied. The mood swing when Swansea scored their second at the Emirates and the subsequent overt frustration that accompanied every poor pass and the final-whistle booing was completely natural and, in my view, a justified reaction. Not because of the way we were playing on the night and not even because it was a hangover from the desperate performance against United a few days before (although God knows that was a low of lows).

To me that booing was the anger built up over many years of Mr Wenger never ever doing quite enough. And here we were, once again, caving in. Another season where we look as though we’ve fallen short, and spectacularly so. The expectation and frustration levels will be even more heightened next year.

There is barely a part of the way Mr Wenger does his job that is not seriously questioned by many fans, be it his tactics, his team selection, his team preparation, his fitness regime, his transfer business.

And with more and more fans losing faith in him, it increasingly looks like it’s the players that have to bear the burden of Mr Wenger losing credibility. I’m not saying the players haven’t been culpable themselves as in some games they just don’t appear to turn up at all.  Nor am I not saying the fans are not their own worst enemy. We don’t help by getting on the backs of the team.

If the team can play through an increasingly anti-Wenger atmosphere this season and get close to Leicester by the season’s end, it may prove to be a big psychological break-through. The team may be toughened up for next season’s ever increasing tension.

The third silver lining is that even without a league trophy or even without any real sign of progress this season, we know that Mr Wenger will almost certainly do enough to qualify for the Champion’s League and that will guarantee he stays. If he stays, we will continue to enjoy the fruits of a man trying to do the best he can and we’ll enjoy too, our Manager continuing to encourage the best kind of football that can be played; expressive, creative artistry.

And that would be better, some argue, than replacing him in an attempt to find greater trophy success which is virtually impossible, what with three richer clubs than us in the League and another 4 or 5 in Europe. That would be an over ambitious and self-indulgent strategy and risk the club struggling to re-create its past glories, as e.g. Man Utd have done, and see us decline instead. Better to be steady and involved to some degree than to risk an even more diminished status.

So, from the perspective of Mr Wenger’s faithful few,  there is good yet to come and although I don’t share their faith, it can be argued, despite the carnage of the last few weeks, the future might still look best with Mr Wenger in charge.

Recent Posts

The anniversaries (index to 4600 anniversaries across the years is here)

  • 9 March 1935 – Arsenal’s biggest crowd at Highbury (73,295) saw what was reported to be a very poor match, probably because it was seen as the title decider.  It ended Arsenal 0 Sunderland 0.
  • 9 March 2000: After beating Deportivo 5-1 in the Uefa cup Arsenal lost the rematch 1-2, but went through as they headed for the final.
  • 9 March 2002: Newcastle 1 Arsenal 1 FA Cup 5th round – part of the 3rd Double Season.  The game was moved for TV, which led to protests from Arsene Wenger, given that Arsenal were still fighting in three competitions.  Cup overview is here.    

And elsewhere

  • 9 March 1562: Kissing in public in Naples was made punishable by death.


34 comments to 75% of the season done: Carnage and Hope

  • Jambug


    “It’s only human to be angry if you are driven to it. And we have been driven to it. At the very least you will have found yourself questioning your faith when, even in the most favourable of circumstances, yes even then, your hero appears unable to deliver. And if you did feel anger and question your faith, you will be forgiven. It’s ok.”

    Got this far and stopped reading.

    I certainly haven’t been driven to anger, not by Wenger at least.

    By Dean, Taylor etc. yes.

    By the ceaseless abuse in the media, yes.

    By the endless assaults on Wenger by the AAA’s, yes.

    What has Wenger done to make me ‘angry’ ?

    And this isn’t to say he hasn’t made a mistake, it’s just that a human being showing human frailties doesn’t make me ‘angry’.

    On the other hand people that expect others to be faultless does.

    And as for ever questioning my faith in the best manager to have ever taken charge at arsenal, and possibly, in my humble opinion the best manager to of ever graced these shores………….NEVER !!

  • Max Kerr

    The key sentence which exposes this article as being constructed on shifting sands: “…if you cause so much frustration every year by not meeting expectations”.

    What are these expectations, and why?

    There seems to be an assumption of right to winning everything amongst some commenters (I hesitate to use the confusing term “supporters”). This state has only existed, at least my memory tells me, since Arsene Wenger became manager, and created the most successful sustained period in Arsenal’s history.

    Those of us who followed the Arsenal through the 60s, 70s and 80s, remember how fluctuating our fortunes were. Obviously we desired success, but I don’t remember expecting victory as a god-given right.

    So criticism of AW is his own fault you might say! If he’d never been manager, and the club had continued its results roller coaster, “expectations” might have been at the level of Spurs or Everton supporters.

    He will go, and possibly quite soon. I for one feel quite depressed at that thought.

  • Jambug

    Max Kerr

    Well said sir. (Wordsworth eat your heart out 🙂

  • insideright

    As the fourth highest payers in the league (and probably lower than fourth if you include transfer fees} the expectation is that we should finish (at best)fourth and we at least meet that expectation every year. And doing it using our own money rather than that of an owner is nothing more than a miracle. I hope Wenger stays for many more years.

  • Proudkev


    You say it exceptionally well.

    Wenger has paid the price for raising our expectation level.

    Those of us who remember the mid table finishes and utter dross we watched on occasions in the 70’s, 80’s and,90’s are able to apply perspective.

  • Jambug


    Beautifully put in about one tenth the words it usually takes me to say something similar.

    Oh, and bye bye Chelsea !!!

  • Jambug

    De Costa and Hazard both of with what looks like muscular injuries tonight.

    Only the FA cup left to play for.

    Oh never mind, lets spend another £100 Million.

  • dan

    Bye bye Chavski, no dodgy CL run !!!

  • Andrew Crawshaw

    Whilst our first team is the headline act that the club has, there is a huge supporting cast of other teams and enterprises that make up the whole entity that is Arsenal.

    Our U21 team are now on a seven match unbeaten run and have enjoyed a three nil victory over Fulham this evening.

    Our U18 players are in the semi final of the FA Youth Cup with home and away games against Man City to decide who gets to that final. The home tie is Monday April 4 at the Emirates (subject to change if the first team beat Barça and stay in the CL.

    Our Ladies first team start their season at the end of the month and are looking to get back to winning the treble, probably fighting Chelsea and City. All three teams have strengthened this year and it will be interesting to see who comes out on top.

    I’m sure I saw that the ladies second team and juniors both were at the top of their leagues.

    More than enough there to be very happy about, even if the first team have had a (referee induced) wobble. The Club will end up with trophies, even if one team within the club doesn’t.

  • Zedsaunt

    Fishpie writes

    ” I have no evidence. But if you say you didn’t even feel a heightened sense of frustration over the last few weeks (months), absolutely no-one will believe you, and your sanity will be questioned.”

    You have no evidence so how do you know ”absolutely no-one will believe you”……… as for ”and your sanity will be questioned”

    Fishpie, you have no evidence. You buy your ticket, therefore you buy your trophy.

    Why don’t you stop talking to yourself and consider 98% of the football fans on the planet, and they never win anything, yet they are football fans.

    Why don’t you, like 98% of the football fans on the planet, love the game of football?

    You just want to be on the side that’s winning, that’s your problem.

  • nicky

    The problem today with successful top division clubs, bordering on supremacy, is the capability to obtain strengthening of their squads each Window.
    This is generally achieved by the signing of new blood, invariably from abroad.
    The earmarked player(s)must be willing to be signed, and the parent club be willing to sell.
    Notice I make no mention of fee or wage.
    There are clubs today where money is of virtually no concern. Owned by foreign money, players will be signed regardless of the asking price, with wages far beyond the already obscene level prevalent in the rest of football.
    The prudent governance of clubs like Arsenal will not permit a similar inflationary way of doing business and the inevitable outcome is that they are perpetually at a gross disadvantage when seeking to improve their lot.
    The answer must be two-fold.
    To improve experienced scouting in the lower divisions of the land for possible latent talent and to build up the local junior ranks of the club well below first team squad.

  • Pat

    Weird and very long article!

    No I wasn’t frustrated or any of the things Fishpie said. I was a bit sad because I like the manager and the players to win. I was angry at the refs but not at the team or the manager.

    Fishpie, are you really saying no fan could feel like that?

    Anyway, it all made yesterday’s victory all the more fun.

  • bjtgooner

    The confused and contradictory writing style would beg a question – is Fishpie really Tim Charlesworth in disguise?

  • GoingGoingGooner

    I like our team…I like the players! I would like them to win more often, sure! But, they don’t drive me to distraction or frustration. They are who they are. I can see that there are players that are not developing as fast as I would have hoped and I can foresee them leaving the club BUT I don’t hate them for this. I save my dislike for those that agitate for a move to a competitor. Or, to those that do their utmost to destabilize our club from without OR from within.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Interesting read.
    Yes, there have been some frustrations this season……and that is usually part of being a supporter.
    People can ultimately judge Wenger and the club as they wish……some are clearly affecting their mental and emotional well being. But it is worth looking at things in a way where you try to understand who Wenger is, what he is trying to do…..and perhaps more importantly, what he is up against, the latter may reflect on the performances of the team.
    Wenger has been accused of a lack of signings, but none of us know the circumstances, who was available and under what conditions. Ok , we know Pato has been available……but. Just a couple years ago, seem to remember the club getting pelters for passing on Falcao. Wenger will know a lot of things we…..and the media do not. Even down to the …topical….?Lack of English spoken by a player. Wenger a
    So knows the abilities of those coming through, and is not afraid to use them.
    Then, what he is up against…..the media…..certain fans…..and what other club would take the refereeing we get without an outcry? Imagine Fergie losing out on big decisions, game after game. Jose had plenty to say this year. Yet, Arsenal just have to put up with it…..I don’t quite know why, but I would imagine they have no real choice. Yes, we are behind little Leicester, the fairy tale club, with the most cynical tactics going. They have been given nearly five times more penalties than us, and we all know how Vardy gets those penalties. We all know what Drinkwater gets away with, and not just against our players. FIF has some very interesting views on what is behind the rise of Leicester, won’t repeat in here, as they are controversial to say the least, but take a look at his postings this week, what he says, and how he backs up his claims, though as usual, he blanks some things out, he says, for paying customers.
    Having said that, whatever they are or are not doing, we have beaten the, twice
    Injuries…..if I have one criticism of Wenger, it is maybe he leaves the squad a little short to fight on so many fronts with the injuries we get to key players….Arteta and TR was a risk that unfortunately did not pay off. Cazorla…and Jack being out has proven devastating….now Ramsey. But I say that in the context of other issues mentioned,, top players….and now, we sign top players… not grow on trees.
    But, onwards and upwards until May

  • Brickfields Gunners

    I , Dr. Rajah @ the Brickfields Gunners , being of sound and sane mind and of a stable disposition , and not being on any medication nor smoking anything , do hereby and hereon sincerely and solemnly promise that I will always profess within my heart an unreserved loyalty and faithfulness to my club, to the manager and to our players .

    That ever since 1971 , when I was first introduced and initiated into this love for my club , I have never ; and will never , ever cast envious glances at another club. That neither a bulging trophy cabinet , nor a limitless transfer budget will ever break my bond with this , my first and only football love.

    That despite in the face of derision , hatred , rudeness , unmitigated stupidity , and unbelievable naivety , I will ever remain resolute and unshaken in my convection that Arsenal FC are indeed in the finest hands.

    That I sincerely believe that Arsene Wenger is and will ever remain a our finest manager . That all that he does is in the best interest of the club, even if sometimes we may not fully comprehend his actions .That despite my misgivings , I will to the best of my ability support the players he chooses to represent us .

    All these points , I sincerely swear to adhere , without evasion and equivocation and mental reservation of any kind ; and I pray to the most high that he keep me steadfast in this , my solemn promise to my club , my manager and my fellow AKBs .

    Sealed in the presence of the Lord on the 3rd. of March 2016 , and for evermore .
    Brickfields Gunners .

  • Brickfields Gunners

    OOPS.. 10 th. of March . No ! No ! Not the fire and brimstone ! AAAUGHHH…!

  • Florian

    I would lie if I claimed I wasn’t frustrated. The refs and the media first and foremost. A few players did have a rough patch, and Santi’s absence didn’t help. Yet still…

    We are 3 points behind “the worst thing in London” (thanks TR7, you will be missed), and they have yet to play Manure at home, and Liverpool! and Cheatski away. That’s 3 of their last 7 matches. Never mind Stoke RC away, and Newcastle away in the last day, a Newcastle who will be fighting for their lives, whereas we get Aston Villa who will be most likely down by then. I’d say we have fair chances to celebrate another St. Totterigham come May.

    We are 8 points behind a team that gets the rub of the green, but for how long? Kante is getting injured more and more often, wonder what are they treating him with so that he recovers so quickly after a hamstring, Vardy still gets the pens but if you look at his scoring he’s misfiring, hm, all is not lost. I wouldn’t expect any favors from Cheatski in the last day when Leicester plays at the Bridge, but Manure might get at least some sense of revenge. Or, maybe, it could be the smaller teams that actually defend and put them in trouble. Southampton, State Aid, anyone? Ok, I know it’s not good to wish someone trouble, but like Arsene himself said, we must rely on others’ failings now.

    Oh, and if there was a silver lining about the injuries, we only have 1 more EPL match to play this month, away at Everton, unless the WBA at home gets rescheduled before the international break. So we might have the chance to see Ramsey back and full of energy for Watford and State Aid.


  • Stevo

    You say Wengers faithful few! Precisely how many is that? You are just assuming that because you are lacking in spirit. Time for all real supporters to get behind the team on the pitch. Remember, we are all part of Arsenal in one way or another so stop writing rubbish and pull yourself together

  • Fishpie

    Well, on the basis of the comments so far, I’ve been well and truly put in my place. And not for the first time. Fair does. Love the brilliant “declaration” Brickfields especially. And look at those Likes/Dislikes scores on the first two comments. I feel like Arsenal’s defence losing 8-2 at Man U. As I say, you guys, more than anyone else, deserve Mr Wenger to bring home the bacon. Yeah, I know you think he has indeed bought home all the bacon he could be realistically expected to bring home and he is a Genius for doing what is expected of him. But an £8m salary is normally associated with jobs where people are judged on doing more than is expected, people who are given challenging and stretch targets. Where the job is inherently difficult and risky for the individual in an extremely competitive environment. Ask most football Managers in fact. And when the circumstances prevail where the normal level of competitiveness is lowered and an opportunity to grab a God given chance for meeting the stretch target is not taken, I choose to ask some questions. One of those questions is, given the anti-Wenger feeling that exists (not among you then but among many others), will Arsene Wenger be a psychological burden on his team or an inspiration next year? Just asking. I’m gonna read Tony’s “10 reasons” article to find out the official Untold answer. Just to put me in my place.

  • Gooner S


    I changed my outlook at supporting Arsenal after Liverpool and Michael Owen mugged us in Cardiff all those years ago. It was a lovely day, a great game, Arsenal played well but lost! I decided then I would try to enjoy the games I watched and not get over emotional about results. That’s not to say since that at times I haven’t got p***ed off at certain results (Monaco at home springs to mind) but I don’t let that feeling last any more. Sometimes it isn’t easy but if it’s a home game then I try to clear my head before I get off the train on my way home.

    I continue to support Arsene Wenger for a number of resons but the main reason is that he has been getting stick for a long time now, some 7 or 8 years and much of that is through ignorance and the lack of understanding regarding the impact of the stadium build. Since then people have become entrenched in their views and have constantly changed the goalposts with their views. “We don’t challenge for the league!”, “Fourth place is not a trophy”, “Any trophy will do” and so on until now the FA Cup isn’t good enough for some Arsenal supporters. If we win it for the third year running in May will these supporters be cheering?

    I don’t think Arsene Wenger will extend his contract beyond next season so if I’m right all of those wanting a change will not have too long to wait.Let’s see what happens then!

  • john

    A great post!!

  • Rantetta

    Funny, I read Tony’s “10 reasons before reading this. I’m glad I did that, although I didn’t have any expectations about this article.

    I think your assumption that all/most fans will at certain times be angry/disappointed specifically with Wenger – is incorrect.

    Others who’ve posted have articulated the ‘whys and wherefore’s’ very well.

  • Tim Charlesworth

    Not sure who should take more offence at bjtgooner’s comment – me or Fishpie?

    Interesting article. Anger and frustration are all to familiar for us gooners in recent years. The see-sawing fortunes of the AKB v WOB factions are an interesting subtext to our season. It looked like us AKBs might triumph this season, but recent events have inevitably reinvigorated the WOB. We lost a battle. The war will only end when we win the title (AKB triumph) or Wenger leaves (WOB triumph). I really hoped we might see an AKB victory this season, but it looks like the conflict will rumble on for another season at least…..


  • Jambug

    Tim Charlesworth

    “Anger and frustration are all to familiar for us gooners in recent years”.

    Not here abouts though it would seem.

    Have you actually read the comments Tim?

    It seems to me that for a vast majority of responders ‘Anger and Frustration’ are the last emotions they are feeling, at least towards Arsenal or Arsene.

    I don’t know where you or Fishpie have got that from.

  • omgarsenal

    Ahha John shows his aaa ferret face but only for a microsecond!
    Fishpie, your article is hyperbole at its best and truly reflective of the John type sadsack viewpoint. I belong to a very large Gooners’ club and about 98% of the membership (over 2000 supporters) are NOT demoralized or downcast, or frustrated or whatever. My guess is that this article was a spring cleaning of your pessimism and blooming aaa sympathies, and that you have actually a more optimistic core. i respect your feelings of frustration and anger but cannot sympathize with them by any means.

  • ob1977

    I have frustrations watching Arsenal, a d can get angry, it I can honestly say not (nearly ever) against the manager, he does his utmost, makes the big calls, and gets judged on them by us all in hindsight, obviously I disagree with him sometimes but I can never say I was right as cannot be proven…

    My anger is at the officials, and frustrations generally at the players, in our last few matches alone we had a wrongly given penalty against us v Leicester, had a red from hell against Southampton, a bad performance non given penalty and red card v Utd, the unluckiest of matches and 2 wrong goals given against us v Swansea, and 1 maybe 2 red cards not given v spurs.

    In all of that my anger is aimed at the poor performances of the officials, my frustration at the players for a weak performance at Utd, sympathy for the players and manager for the Swansea game, and empathy for the whole of Arsenal during the poor run, now here’s to the future, come on you gunners!!!

  • Jambug


    “In all of that my anger is aimed at the poor performances of the officials, my frustration at the players for a weak performance at Utd, sympathy for the players and manager for the Swansea game, and empathy for the whole of Arsenal during the poor run, now here’s to the future, come on you gunners!!!”

    Very well said.

    Despite what certain people may think I do not think Wenger is perfect and I know for sure that players have off days and periods.

    My favourite player is Theo Walcott and I readily admit he has been bellow par for a while, but you wont find me on here berating him.

    My instinct is to feel sorry for him because I think I can see how much he loves Arsenal and I have no doubt at all that he is as disappointed with his form as I am.

    But he will come back. Form is temporary, class is permanent as they say.

    One thing I do know is that ‘booing’ him and slagging him off is the last thing I would do and the least likely thing to help him recover his form.

  • John

    Rather than insult me with the ferret face have a look in the mirror you unwashed ,unshaven matlo.You look like a down and out.Your like a politician that towes the party line no matter what the argument!!At least some of us can think for ourselves and not what their god tells them.

  • Markyb

    John is a slang for bog or toilet, about right I reckon.

  • Tim Charlesworth

    Hi Jambug

    I am a little upset about your 6pm, 10th March comment. You wonder whether I have read the comments (I have), yet your comment demonstrates that you haven’t read my comment! I say nothing about being angry with Arsene Wenger. Indeed, I have never felt any such anger. Then you criticise me for being angry with Arsene Wenger (which I am not, and never said I was)! I appreciate that there are lots of people who are angry with Arsene Wenger, but I am not one of them. I think if you read my (quite regular) articles on Untold, that much should be obvious to you. I apologise if I didn’t make that clear enough. I even signed off my comment with COYAKBs, just to make it unambiguously clear that I was supporting our manager.

    The comment I wrote, simply observes that there has been a lot of anger and frustration around our fans over the last few years. The anger has been directed against a number of things, including referees, Arsene Wenger, our players, other fans, the Premier League, our Board, Kroenke, Usmanov and others. I do not hold any of these views myself (excluding the occasional disagreement with refs). If you want my personal opinion, I am a bit sad that our community has factionalised. In difficult times, we have turned on each other a bit (hence the comment about AKB v WOB). I understand why this has happened, but I am still a bit sad about it, and look forward to it ending.

    Perhaps you disagree that these angers and frustrations exist? Fair enough, but please don’t accuse me of something which I never said and certainly don’t think. I think that before you criticise someone else’s opinion, you should at least check that they do hold that opinion? My last Article for Untold was all about how desperate I was for us to win the league because it would stop the criticism of Arsene. It was published on 8th March, just before the Hull game. It includes phrases such as: ‘I genuinely care about Arsene Wenger’ and ‘he is an amazing man’ and ‘he is a football genius’. Does it sound like I am angry with him? I’m sure I am being oversensitive and overreacting to your comment, but I think it always pays to be civil.

  • Jambug

    Tim Charlesworth.

    If you read Fishpies article you will see that he uses the terms ‘angry’ and ‘frustrated’ to describe emotions that certain people feel towards Wenger. Not Arsenal. Not the refs. Not the media. Wenger. And they are emotions to which he subscribes, or at the very least sympathises with, and I quote from him:

    “It’s only human to be angry if you are driven to it. And we have been driven to it. At the very least you will have found yourself questioning your faith when, even in the most favourable of circumstances, yes even then, your hero appears unable to deliver. And if you did feel anger and question your faith, you will be forgiven. It’s ok.”

    “To me that booing was the anger built up over many years of Mr Wenger never ever doing quite enough. And here we were, once again, caving in. Another season where we look as though we’ve fallen short, and spectacularly so. The expectation and frustration levels will be even more heightened next year”.

    So lets be clear here, the ‘Anger and Frustration’ to which he refers is directly aimed at Wenger.

    Then this is what you said “Anger and frustration are all too familiar for us Gooners in recent years”.

    You used the term ‘US’, not ‘them’ not ‘others’ but ‘US’, which to me suggests that you include yourself in the ‘angry and frustrated’ group of people.

    So don’t accuse me of not reading things properly. I know exactly what I read.

    Perhaps if you wanted to disassociate yourself with the ‘Angry and Frustrated’ (at Wenger) brigade, you should of used the pronoun ‘them’ for example, instead of ‘us’ and I wouldn’t of misinterpreted what you was trying to say.

  • Jambug

    just thinking. The pronoun you should of used was ‘those’.

    “Anger and frustration are all too familiar for THOSE Gooners in recent years”

    Which suggests you DON’T include yourself in there numbers. As opposed to:

    “Anger and frustration are all too familiar for US Gooners in recent years”

    Which suggests you DO include yourself in there numbers.

    Apologies for misinterpreting what you meant but perhaps you should make yourself clearer next time.

  • Tim Charlesworth

    Hi Jambug

    Apology accepted, and please accept my apology for oversensitivity!

    I don’t really want to prolong this debate, but I have to disagree that I should have used ‘those/them’ rather than ‘us’. I consider all Gooners to be fellow travellers. There is too much ‘them’ and ‘us’ among us. I respect all opinions of fellow gooners, including yours and Fishpie’s. I don’t like to see AKBs vs WOBs. I seek (however unrealistically) peace and harmony.

    If there are any gooners who haven’t been angry and frustrated over the last few years, I congratulate them. If you never get angry watching Arsenal, then you are a better person than me. Our anger is a by product of our frustration. Personally, I find that when we win, I am neither angry nor frustrated. The anger is a base reaction and should be ignored (unless of course there is genuine cause, such as Mike Dean). Certainly getting angry with our own side, be it Wenger, fellow supporters or players, doesn’t seem constructive to me.