By Dr Billy “the dog” McGraw, senior psychiatrist at the university hospital of the North Circular Road.
A number of changes are needed I think.
First off, the number of club psychologists needs to be enhanced, as judging by commentaries on some blogs there are a number of people around who find it very hard to manage their own disappointments. As this is a fundamental requirement of a balanced human psyche we really should be doing more for these poor souls. I have offered my services to the club.
My advice, as a medical man is, “don’t take it so personally guys.”
Second I think we need a new fans’ group to help promote good feeling and positive noise in the stadium. I used to receive emails from Red Action regularly, but for some reason they stopped a while ago, but According to the Evening Standard before the match against Watford they called for a boycott…
Arsenal could play Sunday’s FA Cup quarter-final against Watford in front of thousands of empty seats after fans were urged to boycott the game in an ongoing protest over ticket prices.
Three prominent supporters’ voices — Black Scarf Movement, REDaction and The Gooner — have released a joint statement urging season-ticket holders not to take up their seat to avoid an additional cost on their renewal for next year.
Now Black Scarf I can understand doing this – most of the campaigns of theirs that I hear about are negative and orientated in this way. Although I am not sure how many paid-up season ticket holders they actually have on their books. Most of them must be pretty miserable by now, considering they have been running this campaign for years and years without success. I would offer my services to those guys too, but I’m not that magnanimous.
But REDAction is supposed to be a positive group, so I was a little surprised about this. If that is what they did, then it’s a shame.
As for The Gooner, as my medical chums and I approached the stadium on Sunday we saw a Gooner salesman, and asked him if it was true that the Gooner was calling for a boycott, but the salesman said he didn’t know, he didn’t read the magazine, only sold it. We left it at that and didn’t buy a copy.
Anyway, the long and the short of it was that most tickets in the RedAction section seem to have been taken up, and it was occupied as much as normal. So if as seems possible, the Black Shirts (sorry Black Scarf, I often make that mistake) and the Gooner and REDAction have all failed in this activity (either by not following their own advice, or by coming up with a scheme that was bound to fail, since people do like to go and watch Arsenal) they should perhaps wind themselves up. One way or another. At least it would save me winding them up.
Third I think something needs to be done about security. Having seemingly got rid of the blight of flares and/or smoke bombs when Merseyside clubs play, we now seem to have problems with Watford.
Since the stewards are clearly finding it very hard to search people for flares etc, the only answer surely must be to say to each club Arsenal plays, “if anyone in your end lets off a flare or smoke bomb at any time, then the number of tickets you get next time we play you will be halved. And then if repeated, it will be halved again, and so on.”
We have Watford in the next home game, so maybe we should start then. That might lead to a bit of self-policing, which is probably the only thing that can work.
Finally at the next Untold Board Meeting I am going to suggest that we ought to think up a new way of changing our publishing policy for comments. It has been very frustrating in the past to find people writing in without any idea of what has gone on before on this site, and we have started to delete a few comments that show that tendency.
But now we have people commenting who clearly haven’t actually read the article on which they are commenting – which seems a bit bizarre.
Of course as a specialist I am often called upon by my colleagues to give answers on specific issues relating to the site, but people who are anti-Wenger not reading an article and then coming onto a pro-Wenger site in order to be abusive about Wenger is beating my understanding of reasoned behaviour.
Last, and this is just a personal observation, having travelled through the comments (both published and unpublished of late) isn’t it strange how very few people who are saying “Wenger out” are not also saying who we should get in. I mean, there’s no point getting rid of one person if the next person isn’t any better.
And that is an issue, given how long it has taken Chelsea to find a manager, and the problem Man U have had with their manager.
Or could it be that they are all arguing for Wenger to go because they know how hard it is to get a better manager to Arsenal, and they just want things to get worse. I thought of this in relation to the person who wrote in claiming that Bertie Mee had the grace to go quickly, when things started to get a little rough. Such a re-writing of history suggests that anything is possible.
Given the way the crowd in the East stayed on at the end and applauded the Arsenal players, I wonder if some of these people are actually Arsenal fans at all.
Anyway, I am proposing that we shouldn’t publish any more “Wenger should go” comments unless they are accompanied by serious commentaries on who could take over and why – that person being someone who is likely to be available. Just a thought.
The Untold Books
The latest Untold book is Arsenal: The Long Sleep 1953-1970 with a Foreword by Bob Wilson, available both as a paperback and as a Kindle book from Amazon. Details of this and our previous and forthcoming titles can be found at Arsenal Books on this site.