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BBC embarrassed as truth behind anti-Wenger campaign revealed

The BBC has taken the decision that last nights FA Youth Cup final in front of around 34,000 spectators did not take place.

There was no mention of it at all in the first hour of its saturday morning news show on BBC Radio 5 Live, no mention of it on its teletext sports pages and not even a mention that I could find on its web site (although to be fair they may have hidden it away).

Quite why the BBC should pretend that such a glorious and sparkling game did not take place is not clear although it is most likely related to the stance the Corporation has taken over the stories that the Lord Wenger is going to leave because of supporter unrest.

That story was, as we now know, largely a hoax.  There are of course some people who are critical of the manager, but they represent a tiny minority.

However half a dozen or so people who had an interest in destabilizing the club used the tactic known as Paging, in which they use a host of different pseudonyms to post articles in the correspondence columns of hundreds of blogs.  To keep up the volume, articles from other writers are simply lifted and posted over and over again, as if they were the Pagers own.

Untold Arsenal suffered from this with two of the Pagers attacking this site.   One – “James Le Beak” – was outed when one of his copy and paste exercises was noticed after it appeared on these pages.

Even more curiously, after he was banned from this site, the writer tried to slip in another article this time in praise of Arsene Wenger!!!     So having written hundreds of letters stating that the manager should go, he then produced a hymn of praise to our hero.   The piece was deleted prior to publication.

The effect of this campaign is to make it look and feel as if there are thousands – hundreds of thousands maybe – of people who believe Arsene Wenger should go.  There are of course some, but of the 60,000 who go to each game they must represent maybe one half of one percent.

In the world beyond maybe they represent a bigger percentage, it is hard to say, but I suspect it remains at about that level among serious Arsenal supporters.

However the BBC invested a lot of editorial time claiming that the anti-Wenger attitude was a mass movement, and having had it pointed out to them that they (and I must admit like many of us) have been conned by a handful of internet anarchists acting with all the finesse and style of a gang of RBS banking yobbos in a champagne bar after a hard day of stealing our money, they seem to have gone into retreat, removing all Arsenal stories from their programmes and their teletext.

It is a great shame that such a wonderful game of football should be written out by the BBC in this way.   We all knew about Jack, and I’ve been raving about Murphy, Sunu and Coquelin for a while, but the staggering ability of Jay Emmanuel Thomas left me (and I think a few others) gasping.  The score actually was 5-1, but a very bent, or very drunk, linesman ruled the last goal offside, even though everyone was more than a yard on side when the pass was made.

No wonder Stuart Pearce was there.  He can’t believe his luck to have this bunch of players able to play for England, all playing together in one club, all coming of age at the same time.

I doubt that the half dozen or so nutters who have run the anti-Wenger campaign watched the match – they were probably all too busy copying other people’s articles and pasting them on blogs, but the rest of us can revel in what was one of the most exciting games of recent years.

And we can be very excited about what the Arsenal team will look like in two years time.

(c) Tony Attwood 2009

8 comments to BBC embarrassed as truth behind anti-Wenger campaign revealed

  • ggs

    No surprise that BBC didn’t mention anything about FAYC final.
    I have a sneaky feeling that if it had been between ManUSA and L’Pool, they might have been waxing lyrical about the “NEXT GENERATION” of that team sponsored by US government and taxpayers.

    I watched the game through some internet stream, living far away from London and, after 2 hours of what I saw, my belief got even firmer that anybody who claims the failure of AW’s youth policy and it should be ditched need some medical help (including Amy Laurence who claims to be a gooner but no better than any other hacks imo).
    Can’t say enough how proud I was of the gunner juniors!!

    BTW, Phil Brown must have gone mental seeing Cesc wearing that improper jean&shirt and munching a burger in the stadium 🙂

  • FZ

    Excellent piece, Tony. There are also one or two trolls on the Arsenal blogs with a nationalist agenda. I would not be surprised if they pop up on other clubs’ blogsites too.

    The march tomorrow before the game is going to be great and will be a precursor to some really vocal support for AW in the stadium during the match. I hope that as supporters the events of this season will have helped us turn the corner. Perhaps next season people will be in awe of Arsenal’s support.

  • Jonny Neale

    Truly wonderful performance last night – I’ve been raving about JET to anyone who would listen but what a performance!

    My night was a tad marred by an officious steward who wouldn’t let me take photos. They want to own the light apparently. Pathetic.

    Good atmosphere at the ground too – the Mexican wave was a sight to behold.

  • Mark

    The BBC, biased? Never……….hahaha.
    Arsenal games always get relegated to the end on Match of the Day,
    so I’m surprised we don’t get a separate programme,
    to slot somewhere between Ceefax and one of the late night language classes. Any ideas for the name though?
    And why do the BBC have a pathological black spot over us?

  • Nhan Le

    These kids are wonderful, no question. But to call them “coming of age” is a little bit too early. Remember that a couple of years ago our then-kids helped promote Birmingham to the EPL? They were of an outstanding class, too, but only Bendtner made it to the first team.

    What I really love yesterday was that the kids are all technically sound and the strikers are physically dominating. There was this saying that it’s a lot more difficult to train kids technically in England because of the weather. Arsenal, at least, has shown that it’s not true any more. I also like the fact that the players seem to be very well prepared with tactics and understanding of the game. They can show Adebayor and the midfielders of the senior team a thing or two about how not to get your strikers in offside positions!

    What made me think they are still kids are decision making and concentration. The goal we conceded embodied both of these shortcomings. When Jack lost the ball, instead of tracking along with the winger, he sent in a late tackle (so late it missed both ball and the body) allowing his opponent to run free. That’s bad decision making. After that, we didn’t really close down the passer as well as the finisher of the goal.

    Of course in a game with magnificent attack I shouldn’t ask for more. I’m just thinking the magnificence masked some shortcomings which may yet prove the difference between talent and success. It’s up to the players to overcome them and become the final products we all hope them to be.

  • Bosnian Gooner

    sorry because I wont be able to travel 2000 km to be on Emirates tomorrow…. but please cheer Le Boss for me please 🙂

  • Terence McGovern

    There was no mention of the game on SKY eithr up until 3 am anyway but they tend to pretend that games broadcasted on Setanta don’t actually exist unless they were a former major shareholder of a club involved in the game.

  • prick

    I went out for 2 days and when I return you guys have sorted JLB out. It’s a shame.

    I thought he was mildly entertaining.
    It’s going to be 2 months of boredom after tomorrow…