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October 2016
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Memo to the Metro Newspaper. Just how miserable would you like me to be?

By Tony Attwood

Top of the list today among the oddities of England’s press when it deals haphazardly and on the cheap with football, is the Independent’s home football page which has within it a listing of the top three stories for each club.

Or at least that is what it is supposed to have.  Unfortunately, the whole section of the paper, as with a growing number of newspaper pages, is prepared not by your actual humans but by robots.   So under the heading “PREMIER LEAGUE CLUB-BY-CLUB” we find each club neatly listed in alphabetical order, with the headline”Bournemouth” telling us…

  • Could this be Britain’s most expensive airport link?

Beneath it is the story that begins, “Outrage: that has been a typical response to the Heathrow Express raising “walk-up” rush-hour fares by 9 per cent.”

Below that and still in the Bournemouth section as at 1pm on 3 June

  • West Ham have club-record £31m Lacazette bid rejected
  • Manchester United vs Bournemouth game rescheduled
But, its a long way from the end of one internet cable to the other.
Elsewhere they have been running the story that “Arsenal fans lambaste stripe down the middle of new strip.”  How many fans we don’t know.  Five?   Ten?  We shall see when the new season opens, but I suspect that as usual the new strip will be sold and fans will buy it.
The Daily Mail did a nice one while waiting for the news that an unemployed gent who is currently preparing for his day in court with another ex-employee of his previous employers (if you catch my drift) with the headline
  • Manchester United set to make statement for 1pm

1pm came and went and was later in the day followed by…

  • It’s now being reported that the club will NOT be making a statement on Van Gaal’s position – which is odd given everything that has happened this morning.

Yes, but it is an odd world.  Maybe the newspaper editors should be prepared, by now, for the occasional oddity.

The Telegraph also likes to run robotic headlines and until yesterday were running 

  • Win the Europa League and Liverpool could be ready for a golden era

They were also able to cover recent international events with the glorious headline that

  • Jamie Vardy punches himself in the face as fans criticise Roy Hodgson for playing him on England’s left wing

Meanwhile there was a little coverage in the Metro of the fact that Arsene Wenger visited Alsace in north east France to inaugurate the 500 seater ‘Stade Arsene Wenger’ in the Commune of Duppigheim.   The Metro tells us…

Wenger was clearly delighted with the new stadium and described it as an honour.

‘It’s an honour,’ he said.

I’m glad we got that sorted.

Meanwhile, meanwhile, there are signs of rebellion reported in the Independent with the headline

  • England fans are not happy with Jack Wilshere’s inclusion

The story reports four Tweets from different people (allegedly) to this effect.  Still I suppose the headline “Up to four England fans are not happy with Jack Wilshere’s inclusion” would not have had the same amount of ooomph.

Quite often of course it is the implication behind the headline that makes the whole thing seem so funny and outrageous.   Take the Telegraph’s chunter to the effect that…

  • England manager Roy Hodgson remains defiant as Gary Lineker and Alan Shearer pan formation and tactics

Now that “remains defiant” rather suggests a person holding onto an untenable position in the light of incontrovertible evidence.  And yet all we had here were two people who present a TV show, and have often made complete idiots of themselves with their biased reporting.

And that I suppose is the trick of the headline writer these days, although not really in the Independent which ran the headline 

  • BT Sport to stream Champions League and Europa League finals free   

two weeks after the games in question.  So not quite the deal it might have been then.


Back at the Metro however a different stance is being tried with this line…

  • Despite it being a fairly miserable campaign, The Gunners finished on a high as a 4-0 win over the relegated club saw them enjoy yet another glorious St Totteringham’s Day.

OK so this was a “fairly miserable campaign” in which Arsenal came second in the league.   In response to this news I have tried place the positions of each club in the league according to their miserability chart.  Let’s see how it goes…

Pos Club Campaign ranking
1 Leicester City Not miserable
2 Arsenal Fairly miserable
3 Tottenham Hotspur Particularly miserable although Match of the Day coverage good
4 Manchester Airport Very miserable apart from being given lots of money
5 Manchester United Extremely miserable indeed
6 Southampton Unbelievably miserable
7 State Aid United Wrist cuttingly miserable despite being paid for by the state
8 Liverpool? So gut wrenchingly awful that we still can’t get out of 7th/8th and we are now given a question mark instead of our three exclamations.
9 Stoke City It’s always miserable in Stoke so who can tell?
10 Chelsea The miserability has fallen off the edge of the scale just like our supporters have fallen off the edge of the planet.  Never has life been this bad except when having to watch an atrociously dull and boring Mourinho side get 1-0 victories.

Of course the Metroid is also the newspaper which ran the headline

  • Six undeniable reasons Arsenal need to finally sack Arsene Wenger

That was particular fun since every single one of them was utterly deniable.   But then, you can’t keep a bunch of n’er-do-wells down with a wet broomstick as they say in Suffolk, and so the Metro then followed it all up with

  • Arsenal chief executive Ivan Gazidis admits Gunners are planning for a future without Arsene Wenger

Now can you imagine what would happen if Arsenal were not planning for a future without Mr Wenger?  All companies, whatever their shape or size have contingency plans for eventualities, and when you have a senior gentleman running the show, you know that one day he will leave, so you put plans in place.

Mind you I am still trying to sort out what I would say about Newcastle’s season if the miserable league table above have continued down that far.

Recent Posts

Untold Arsenal has published five books on Arsenal – all are available as paperback and three are now available on Kindle.  The books are

  • The Arsenal Yankee by Danny Karbassiyoon with a foreword by Arsene Wenger.
  • Arsenal: the long sleep 1953 – 1970; a view from the terrace.  By John Sowman with an introduction by Bob Wilson.
  • Woolwich Arsenal: The club that changed football.  By Tony Attwood, Andy Kelly and Mark Andrews.
  • Making the Arsenal: a novel by Tony Attwood.
  • The Crowd at Woolwich Arsenal by Mark Andrews.

You can find details of all five on our new Arsenal Books page



13 comments to Memo to the Metro Newspaper. Just how miserable would you like me to be?

  • Goonermikey

    The media is a shambolic joke from top to bottom. We should not be surprised.

  • porter

    Pay no attention to the media either go or if not watch the matches , form your own opinions on what you see.

  • Leon

    So now we know how Vardy got to look like that.
    Not much wrong with the UK media. It has freedom of expression & is relatively uncensored without which we’d never have learned what lying scumbags Blatter & Platini are, that Elvis is living on the moon and Koeman will replace Wenger next year. It’s also a lot of fun.

  • Leon

    Talking of Blatter, there’s a story today of him fraudulently awarding himself £26,600.000 in bonus’ .
    I read that in the media.

  • Usama Zaka

    OFF-TOPIC… Messi Tax Fraud Case

    It looks like the Messis are going down, and are trying to play dumb in the court. Just look at the defense presented by the Messis and their lawyer, laughable.

    Attorney on Messi: “He’s like the boss of a criminal structure”

    Messi’s lawyer seeks acquittal”

    El Abogado del Estado: “Lo explicado por los Messi tiene credibilidad cero”

  • Ajay

    I find it odd that news papers call our season miserable. I mean we have consistently improved our standings. Considering that it’s the off season you don’t see a lot of asinine comments asking for ouster of tom,dick & harry. However this is just the kind of headlines that is fodder for certain fans to start reacting negatively carrying posters and protesting. I think last season if we do go through some of the articles by these same papers you would see similar headlines on how we r waiting to go up in flames and we saw the booing and all the other nonsense that went on. It certainly undermined the team spirit. So I hope next season we don’t get riled up by some shite headline.

  • SamuelAkinsolaAdebosin

    This question begs for correct answer please. How are Arsenal planning for the future without Mr Arsene Wenger? Or have they already planned for that future without him in charge of Arsenal?

    What is Mr Gazidis implying with that his statement the Daily Telegraph reported that he made to them in the media chat he had with them?

    Has the Boss told the Arsenal board that he’ll be leaving Arsenal after his current deal which still has a year on it to wind down?

    Did Manchester United planned ahead of time before they installed Mr David Moyes, LvG and now Mr Jose Mourinho ahead of time before they were employed to managed Man Utd? In the case Mr Moyes, one can say maybe.

    I would have thought it’s when the time draws near for the Boss to leave Arsenal then will be the moment the Arsenal Board will start identifying the manager they’ll want to appoint among the internally and externally list of available candidates who can be appointed as Arsenal manager.

    And it is being believed right now in some Arsenal quarters, that the possibilities of the Boss renewing his deal at Arsenal after his current deal has ran out is still on the cards. More so if Arsenal win the BPL title or as a concession won the Ucl next season.

    So it won’t be wrong for one to assert that for the Boss to have his deal renewed again beyond the total 20 years deal he would have had next season at Arsenal is strongly tied to his winning the BPL title or the Ucl next season.

    It has been said that Arsenal will want to complete any incoming new players deals they have in mind before the start of the Euro 2016 matches. This is so to avoid any bidding wars with other clubs who may later want to vie for the same player or players and consequently forced the bidding price to go up.

    Though we still have a week before the commencement of the 2016 European Cup of Nations. But there had didn’t been any strong indication from the rumour mill that shows that Arsenal will sign another top quality player after they’ve signed Granit Xhaka before Euro 2016 starts

  • Leon

    And now corruption in chess. Is there anywhere in the world that’s safe?

  • Luvyourclub

    Sorry but anything media about Arsenal is wrong and a joke but then anything about Spurs on this site is based on the media and speculation. This site doesn’t half confuse me sometimes about right and wrong. The sooner the site just forgets about the haters and just concentrates about the Gooners good and bad without trying to make Arsenal the perfect club the better. Such a shame such good writers and intelligent people lower themselves to the standards of other. Untold Arsenal has the potential to be something special, better than majority of football blogs out there but sadly comes across as everybody else.

  • Pat

    Just came from the Arsenal supporters’ meeting at the Emirates. Sad to say the questions both from the platform and from the floor would never have led you to believe we had just come runners up in the league.

    Ivan Gazidis did his best but even he felt he had to apologise and say he was disappointed, while at the same time pointing out that the last three years have seen improvement.

    I feel sure plenty of the 350 fans in the audience feel like me – pleased to have improved our position, come second and inflicted a last minute St Totteringham’s Day on Spurs once again. But it was obvious that several youngish professional looking men in suits had gone determined to get in negative questions and managed to do so.

    Such a shame! It seems Arsenal fans aren’t allowed to enjoy themselves these days!

  • Polo

    @ Pat, young fans these days want their clubs to be like Real Madrid or Bayern Munich who spend vast amount of money on superstar players to achieve trophies, that’s the model they are after. It’s no longer about developing talents, it’s buy establish talents.

  • Leon

    Metro is now suggesting that Jack Wilshere persuaded Vardy to sign for us while on international duty together.

  • austinpaul

    Media reports are noting but ‘fun’; if. U take dem seriously U do at ur own perile! Hugwash, dats wat their reports are especially those on transfers;its insane to link arsenal wit over 50 players wen d rule says 25 in d club’s snr team?I only wonder why. Arsenal is their favourite object of these persistent insane Reportage!