Bergkamp, player abuse and players as managers. Can you help

By Tony Attwood

I wrote a brief piece today on the Arsenal History site (link below) concerning Dennis Bergkamp, in recognition of his appointment as assistant manager at Ajax.

The article got me thinking about two things:

First, how many other ex-Arsenal men are working in senior management at clubs?  Remi Garde has just got the job as manager at Lyon, and Martin Hayes is at Dover Athletic.  Pat Rice is at Arsenal, of course.

But who else?  My mind has gone blank and I need your help.  Can you tell me any others?  I’d like to do a series on these players turned coaches, and I’d like to follow their exploits this coming season.

Second, writing about Dennis brought back the memories of the way in which Inter fans attempted to destroy him with their remorseless criticism.  Indeed it is fair to say that had they not turned on Dennis as they did we would never have been able to sign him and have the benefit of the man who has been voted the second greatest Arsenal player ever.

With the under 10s division of the supporters clubs now going out to destroy most of the current Arsenal squad, I was also thinking of doing a piece or two on other players who have been destroyed by club’s resident moron community.

Again, can you help?  Before the growth of what I used to call the Anti-Arsenal Arsenal (which started in 2000 – as the current series of articles on the History site shows) we had one or two such, but I can’t recall many.  If you can help with information about players who have been vilified in the past that would be helpful.

If you are a regular reader you will know that I personally don’t agree with such behaviour of players, so my resultant article will be very much against such vilification.  I think the fact that such behaviour lost Inter a man who could have been one of their greatest players ever says it all.

I know the under 10s will snigger at this, and I have already heard statements to the effect that “are you trying to say that Denilson is another Bergkamp”.  These people are of course under 10s, so it is very hard for them to get even the slightest grasp of a simple idea, but to spell it out: to the Inter fans at the time, Dennis was a truly awful player.  So bad that they got the media to run the Bergkamp of the Week award, for the worst player in the top division that weekend.   The quality of the player is not the issue – it is the treatment of the player that then destroys the potential quality in the player.  To the Inter fans of the time Dennis was a fourth division player.  He wasn’t of course, but they so undermined his self-belief, that his performances dropped off, and they then were not treated to the performances that we later had the honour of watching.

Just as their loss was our gain, because of the way in which these “supporters” have allied themselves with the media (always ready to knock anyone) we are likely now not only to lose some good players we are also likely not to be able to sign certain players because they don’t want to suffer the abuse either.

Do let me have your thoughts on Arsenal players turned senior management, and Arsenal players who have suffered abuse from people who call themselves Arsenal fans.

Dennis Bergkamp: a brief celebration

The start of the Anti-Arsenal Arsenal

Untold Arsenal

Arsenal History

Arsenal in 1910

69 Replies to “Bergkamp, player abuse and players as managers. Can you help”

  1. Good article, have to agree, the under 10’s are killing our team and our spirit. I am absolutely convinced some of this is not from Arsenal fans but from other teams supporters seeing an opportunity to stir things up.

  2. I think Bendtner may flourish at another club. Sure he’s made some arrogant comments, but he’s just a young man and I don’t think he deserves the treatment he’s received from the fans. He has shown flashes of brilliance at times. In 4 years time we may all regret letting him go.

    Denilson is another matter. I’m afraid that he is destined to disappear into lower the lower leagues in brazil. The best thing for him is probably the fact that no one was interested in signing him and he’ll have another year to turn things around under the coaching staff at Arsenal.

  3. Good Tonny,

    Well I have one name of one Arsenal player that you have forgotten who turned into management. How about Mr. Arsenal,your name sake, Tony Adams, off course he is in the wilderness, somewhere in the old USSR.

  4. Jensen asstitant manager at Blackburn
    Steve bould coach at arsenal!
    O’leary had a spell

  5. I suggest all to read this artricle…

    We suggest you read and comment on the above article instead of trying to drag the discussion off into your own agenda – sorry, it’s just the way things work around here.

  6. I think these very same problems have been manifest for 4 years at least, when will these idiots learn

    “endure the brutalities of the actual English game as it is currently allowed to be played”

    ffs get real pal, the english game is played the english way, always has, hopefully always will, its the same for our rivals too….. to change that will change what makes english football a great watch, who wants to watch serie a or la liga, sorry the football played by all bar barca is boring, most games are shit. the occasional shocking injuries are suffered because of our slow boring, crappy tippy tappy football…its funny back in the days of henry viera, et al we never suffered such horrific injuries caused by oppo players…coincidece???

    “wengers exit will cause a mass exodus and lead to us having to rebuild massively” mass exodus??? our best players want to leave anyway, AW’s leavng wont make a rats arse of difference, hopefully a mass exodus would occur, as the majority of the current squad are overated, pampered, dont give a shit, and in their comfort zones. i wold hope there would be a mass exit. rebuilding?? thank christ for that we’ve needed it for t least 4 years, if AWs exit leads to that great… cos get this we aint going anywhere with this current group of players. those that show the neessary quality, get peed of by the lack of success and the averageness of their colleagues and fuck off leaving us at square one again. this current system can never work.

    id be very interested to know where your from originally and how long you have followed the club, as you sound very much like a jcl who knows only 90’s arsenal. if not how can you not see this, can you not see the club has lost significant ground on the top clubs and been caught up by the likes of sperz over the last few years…dont say we have no money…explain the wage bill, and explain crap or past it players getting big long contracts…not to protect thier value, as we then cant shift them on its because AW is far to stubborn to admit his project has failed.

  7. @tony – this may help jog your memory, not exactly upto date but there are some names there I’d forgotten about –

    @courage – just do one, I don’t come onto this blog to see all this bollocks, I’m perfectly able to click onto the websites of all the crap papers you seem so enamoured with. I don’t because it holds no interest to read speculation and rumour. If you want to read it, that’s perfectly fine, but don’t go splashing it all over here. It’s not even your opinion you’re posting, it’s someone else’s! Courage? Really? Behave yourself boy

  8. courage,
    You base your argument on the worst-case assertion that Arsene/Arsenal have lots cash and won’t spend it. So, please help me understand: exactly (or even a good guesstimate) how much cash does Arsene/Arsenal have to spend? and what’s your source for your answer?

  9. @courage – I make my own decisions based on what I believe to be the truth and what I see on the pitch. If you want to let the press influence every single thought in your mind, good for you, I personally prefer to make up my own mind (note MY OWN MIND). Also, in case you hadn’t noticed, this is a pro-Wenger site (the banner gives that away).

  10. I agree with the article…

    Good, shame the rest of your post went ‘off topic’.

  11. FYI everyone – courage and varun are in fact the same person.

    Please consider this when you try to figure out the agenda behind their posts.


  12. Isn’t Adams still in Azerbaijan?

    Manager of Borehamwood FC Ian Allinson if you are interested is an ex Arsenal player.

  13. @ Varun
    If you ever write a comment actually related to the article posted, we will ALL be gobsmacked.

    @ courage or should I call you “cowardice”,
    I second Stevie E’s remarks. Get lost.

    @ Tony
    I don’t have any names for you but it’s struck me that there are not that many ex-Arsenal players in management compared to ex-ManU. Would you say that was right?

  14. Nice article Tony
    From memory here are some Arsenal players slaughtered by so called suporters

    Jon Sammels, it got so bad he hated playing at home

    Ian Ure (as mentioned in Fever Pitch)

    Geoff Barnet, the crowd were always restless with him between the sticks as they are with Almunia, Barnet managed a team in the USA

    Jeff Blockley, blamed by nearly all for a bad campaign

    Brendon Batson, just like Denilson it was a groan as he came on the pitch, he later thrived at WBA and now is involved in the players union (I believe)

    John Mathews, Steve Walford, Gus Ceaser, Ceaser in particular is vilified for one poor performance when he played in the Littlewoods Cup Final with a hernia injury.

    Willie Young, “go back to Tottenham” was the chant as we got slaughtered by Ipswich at home, he later became a cult hero

    Glen Helder, Christ he had a hard time from the East Stand Lower

    What is a fact is that the phenomenon is on the increase, everyone is an expert now myself included. The advent of scenario games like Championship Manager leads even those who have never played the game, or attended a match to believe that they are experts, and the poor level of punditry in this country reinforces those beliefs, and online publishing is a forum for their opinions, we all do it, never has the roar of discontent had such a platform.

    On the subject of Arsenal players managing, remember the guy who scored against Villa when they won the league at Highbury despite losing 2-0? He is at Reading and doing a fine job. (Brian wavy hair McDermott)

    Vladimir Petrovic (one of my all-time favourites, as good as Pires) he now manages Serbia

    George Graham did OK I guess

    Alan Ball had a varied career

    John Radford was an outstanding semi pro manager at Dagenham for many seasons

    Frank Mclintock bombed at Leicester I think?

    Bob Mcnab coached in Canada and managed an appeared in On The Buses

    And Emmanuelle petit managed an appearance in the Bill

    Brain Kidd was a Gooner for a few years, Kiddo we called him, but bombed as a manager.

    Malcolm McDonald was outstanding at Fulham until he shagged a directors daughter (I know this for a fact cause the director owned the Albany Hotel in Earls Court, I was a regular drinker there as was Peter Marinello, I tried but failed to bed her myself) for Supermacs crime he was ostracised from the game.

    Brain Talbot managed at WBA, and had a torrid time, losing to Woking at home in the FA Cup and then sacked.

    Liam Brady managed Celtic and Brighton.

    Graham Rix managed at Hearts for about 5 mins and was an assistant at Chelsea.

    David O’Leary took Leeds to Champions League Semi and also managed Villa. I heard a rumour that he was never regarded highly by the Highbury hierarchy because he had a natural arrogance, so was never considered when GG left.

    To you Guys in a state of Panic about the Media Hysteria, it is the silly season, and despite everything, all the coming and going, and despite Myles Palmers one man ego trip, the voyage of a failed journalist, it does not matter who leaves, there is always another player out there waiting to forge a place in our hearts


  15. Thanks Dogface for letting us know. Some things get more clearer. So the U10 or some fans of other clubs are out there to make us feel bad.

  16. Or you can say that the criticism that Dennis got eventually made him into a star player that we know. Sometimes some players need that extra push of motivation. Dennis got his final push with all the criticsm. Maybe some of our current players too might get that final push or motivation with all the criticism going around. It reminds me of Rooney. During last season, his form dropped, his attitude went down hill, his personal life in crisis, and eventually one press conference made him into the most hated player at ManU, and he got booed by his own fans during playing. But he came out strongly, his form returned, his attitude returned, and came out with 10 goals during the latter half of the season. So even he got that final push with all the criticsm.

    Sometimes you have to wonder, isn’t that what champions are made of?? To rise above all the criticsm and prove the critics wrong??

  17. Walter… he had a lot of accounts he was logging in as – you wouldn’t believe it!

    I uploaded all the comments into a database and ran through a statistical language parser – there were 7 accounts with a 98% probability of coming from the same source.

    The most telling account this troll was using was ‘Agent Smurf’ – a self professed ‘Tottenham Fan’.

    I’ll leave you with that thought… sorry for going off topic.


  18. Dark Prince

    Or you can say that the criticism that Dennis got eventually made him into a star player that we know.

    Yes you could say that but it is hard to equate it with the facts. If you look at Dennis’ record you will see that he settled in, but when the abuse took off he got worse and worse and worse, and by the second year very much wanted to get the hell out of there.

    Criticism as motivation works, but I have never seen criticism as blind abuse have a positive effect

  19. “Criticism as motivation works, but I have never seen criticism as blind abuse have a positive effect”

    absolutely true….

    But pointing out the flaws aka giving logical opinion based on facts in a constructive way is also important. But this blog will not do that and fair enough. It’s different and that’s what makes it unique.

    By the way, i have to admit, quality of untold arsenal goes up several notches in summer breaks.

  20. @Dark Prince,

    Curious, just cause Manure fans booed their own player, we have to consider that as a standard to encourage a player to do better? Really? You mean, we have to stoop lower to get even with a certain group cause they won the league last time and we didn’t?

    Does the outcome always justify the means? If you answer yes, then you should seriously rethink about this whole thing here. What are you doing here supporting Arsenal for mate? It will be far more rewarding for you to go and support Chel$ki or Manure or Citeh for that matter. I am certain their philosophy will align more with yours.

  21. Tony-

    Yes, i admit its hard to equate my idea in terms of facts. But it can be possible. Bergkamp may have lost his interest in playin for that club and might have taken the criticism as a motivational push to perform for the next club. Even Henry was not as effective in his previous club as he was in Arsenal, same with Viera.

    Eventually it comes down to a situation where a player doesn’t perform well at one club, gets criticised, loses interest in playin for that club and takes the criticism as a motivation to perform for the next club.

    Arsenal has benefitted in some cases b4, and maybe now we’re on the opposite end.

    Maybe this is another flaw in the way our youth systems worked. Bcoz to be honest, there’s a general feeling that most of our young players take their place in the squad for granted. And hence the motivation that one gets while fighting for a place in the squad gets lost. And this results to lack of progress and eventually loss of form. And when this same loss of form is seen by the fans, they voice their opinions. This in turn can either help a player to get motivated to play better, like it was in case for Rooney, or the player will fall out of love for the club and will seek to prove their point elsewhere. Either ways, the criticism expressed is an important part in the player’s career. They make or break him.

  22. @Chowdhury- so you are saying that fans cant express their criticism??

    Jus look back at what you said in your post, how would you feel that you cant no right to criticize my view?? Every fan has the right to express their criticism. It would be really biased to say that fans can only support but not criticize. And fans dont criticize for any stupid reason, they criticize for the right reasons and concerns.

    Also, you already know what players like Adebayor or Ashley or Denilson or Bendtner or Cesc or Nasri have expressed….as players of Arsenal club, if they can express their feelings of being disloyal to the club, then why cant the fans express their views about the players??

    The door swings both ways.

  23. I remember Thierry Henry getting heavily booed by juventus fans in 1999. I was very impressed by him at ’98 France WC even though he scored against my country (South Africa) in the opening match.

    so I started watching juve games in 1999 to keep tabs on him. I just couldnt believe how juve fans booed him at every game and every touch of the ball. I think he eventually played no more than 20 games that season and then came to us. the rest is history

  24. Brian McDermott at Reading was one of ours!

    We have more in the media (Dixon, Keown, Winterburn, Wright) than in management.

  25. Dark Prince,

    You are right to say that everyone has the right to criticise. Of course, that is the nature of an open, democratic society.

    But there are two problems. Sometimes criticism can be harmful when it gets out of control – and I think that happened with Dennis at Inter, and it is now becoming a problem as players are looking twice at coming to Arsenal, because of the level of criticism from those who write Arsenal commentaries.

    Also there is criticism which just says, “this is no good” and gives no reasoning. If I may, perhaps I may quote, in total, one of your comments on one of the articles on Untold yesterday…

    This is probably the worst article in Untold history….
    If this was supposed to be a joke, then it really lacks the sense of humour. Poor article.

    That’s it. No explanation as to why, but instead a belief that your notion of a sense of humour is universal, rather than any recognition that there are many different approaches to humour. No explanation of why it is the worst ever, or anything.

    That’s where the problem lies.

  26. I don’t think there is much of a problem with saying : Player X made a mistake there.

    But when they start using names like Denishit, Diabolical, and you know all those abusive names for our own players that it really gets bad. This is not criticising, this is abusive.

    I think a name of a person is a bit a sacred thing you don’t really touch. After all it is something we have enherited from our parents so I don’t joke with names. Certainly with names of our own players.

    The only thing is when you do this to compliment a player. A nice nickname, a friendly one or one that has a positive sound.

    I think using bad names is something we should only be doing for the “enemy”. So Wayne Looney is very fine for me.

    And I do think that as shown today on Untold a lot of the bad names comes from fans from other teams and then the U10 section takes it over and starts using it.

  27. One quoted a lot of Arsenal and ex-Arsenal players, but Ray Kennedy does he not ring a bell?

    My own view of the Hale End Academy and the Reserves at London Colney, is that they seem to play so few competetive games during the season. For example, relying on memory, Mr Banfield implied that the Reserves had no competetive games to play in December 2010. It would seem that that it was up to the player if he wished to turn up at London Colney for training. This was the sense I got from

    Denilson according to the link provided by Waleed in his article, had very good season in 2008/2009 from the figures provided. So why have some bloggers known from Day 1 that Denilson was useless?

    Facts are better than any comments, so perhaps it is lack of competitive gamesa during the season, that is causing some players to be singled out for unfair comments?

    Perhaps this is off-side (!), but perhaps someone has the knowledge to why the Academy and Reserves have limited exposure?

  28. This is true Walter… this is an eye opener – I have just run a deep scan on the comments and the indications are that one poster held all these accounts:

    agent_smurf (Tottenham Hotspur),
    Dan Green,

    People say we are paranoid at Untold – but look at those names and read the comments. This was a long term attack that took a considerable amount of effort and had a specific agenda.

  29. @Dark Prince – I’ve noticed that a lot of your comments are anti arsenal but pro man u… maybe you’d be happier supporting them openly because you seem to think they do everything perfectly but we do everything badly. How can you use rooney as an example of being motivated by booing but critise our boys for not fighting for a place, therefore not trying. I would suggest rooney is 1st on the team sheet, wouldn’t you? Same as vidic, rio etc etc but I bet you think they are motivated without having to fight for a place. C’mon DP, you can do better than that 😉

  30. @ Stevie E

    You are forgetting the pay rise that Rooney sought and won!!!!

    Dogface, you are a can(ny)ine indeed!

  31. Tony- you’re right on one thing, we are in a democratic society. So everyone is entitled to their views.

    Regarding my quote on your previous article, its was jus that my own personal opinion. I know most other readers might have found it rather funny article, but imo it was not the type of article i expect or want to read. But jus think, if suppose most of the readers of Untold did not like that article, doesn’t that huge amount of criticism give out a signal?? It doesn’t mean that you are not entitled to right such an article, it doesn’t even mean that the readers together should not criticise bcoz it might then discourage you. But i does give out a signal to you, telling you that such articles might not be appreciated later on. So either you’ll continue writing such articles and be criticised or you can learn from such criticism and do a better job next time. Either way, its necessary for the readers to let you know how they feel about your article.

    The point i’m tryin to make here, with regards to this article, is that when the majority of the public are criticising something specifically, then they are right to criticise for it. Believe me, such situations dont arise a lot when a majority of fans will criticise together for something.

    The only way to get out of such a situation is to get better and win the fans back OR to leave the club and make the fans happy.

    Either way, keeping the fans happy/satisfied is an important part of a club’s ambition, bcoz without the support of the fans, the club will be nothing.

    Similarly, when Dennis was booed at Inter, it was bcoz he was doing things wrong, and if the fans hadn’t expressed their criticism then he would never have went forward in his career. In that case, he would have been a burden not only on the club but on the fans as well. But he experienced first hand criticism from the fans, and it changed him. Some players jus need that criticism to push themselves.

  32. @dogface – I always hated vretou & sharad!!! Seriously nice work matey 😉

  33. @Stevie E- you’re forgetting that during those hard times for Rooney, he was not even included in the squad and was told to disappear for few weeks. So he did fight back for his place in the starting 11.

    Also, i’m not anti-arsenal, and neither am i pro manu or pro barca or pro chelsea or pro anything else. I pick out the positives of other clubs to point out where Arsenal can improve. I support Arsenal. I bring out the positives when needed, and i speak out the negatives when needed. Jus bcoz i want Arsenal to be better by changing some of its present methods, doesn’t mean i’m anti-arsenal.

  34. David Platt -assitant in Man,Shitty was in the class of 98.

  35. @DP – he was sent packing to protect him from the shitstorm he had created! Instead of being told to take it like a man, he was given a nice little mid-season holiday and told to come back as soon as the media storm died down (and he got himself a nice payrise), then he was back in the fold as golden boy. He spent most of the season unable to hit a barn door but was still included in the first 11 week in week out.
    I honestly can’t believe what you’re claiming about being positive, you rarely (if ever) has anything positive to say about arsenal, but here you are holding rooney as an example to others? Do me a favour, have a look at this, you seem to have a confused idea of support – Cheers!

  36. @DP
    I fail to undrstand this kind of support where 90% of your comments just say what is bad at arsenal.. I assume a supporter should have atleast more positives about a team than negatives.. But the negative view in you far outnumber the positives in you (atleast for Arsenal)

    I distinctly remember Tony posting an article about 8 or 12 ways in which Arsenal can have a better season this time and you posted an exatly opposite view by showing 10-12 ways in which we can go worse.. I can not understand why would a supporter would only show faults in his supporting team(sorry I might have missed few of your positive posts)

  37. @Dogface:

    Well done…To provoke such a coordinated reponse, you must be doing something right 🙂

  38. Hi Anne, thanks… Untold should be a nicer place if we can keep cracking down on the trolls.

    Hey, I don’t suppose you fancy researching another match do you?

    You can name your game (so to speak, any match over they last 4 seasons) I’ve made massive leaps with the translation but there are a few unknowns left to solve with the data.

    Email me if you can fit it into your schedule!


  39. @Stevie E- yes agreed on what you said about Rooney. But he did recieve a huge load of criticism from the fans and the media as well and yet came back strongly to score 10 goals in the latter half. Thats how he handled criticism.

    Also, i have been positive when it mattered, but you have to admit, Untold is usually an optimistic site. It says all the positives, so i to make it balanced have to show the other negative side as well. But at times i’ve given my positive and optimistic views as well.

  40. @Abhishek Kumar- yes i do agree that my negative comments about the players or board decisions or manager do out weigh the positives i may have said till now.

    I usually try to show the other side of the coin of the same article. But usually the articles here are quite positive and optimistic, so i try to balance it by showing the other (usually) negative side. But at times i do balance it by showing the positive sides also.

    If i was really a negative supporter, then i would have never ever even come to this site and instead gone to the hundreds of other sites who talk about the negatives. The reason i’m here is bcoz i respect what this site is about. I respect the tradition and history of Arsenal that i personally gain from this site. And i’m a supporter of Arsenal and Arsene Wenger as well.

    But jus bcoz i try to show the negatives, doesn’t mean i’m against Arsenal. Its jus the other side of the story which usually i express to balance out, or to give another understanding of the article. Its nothing against the club.

  41. @DP – or he had a nice holiday, didn’t have to actually face any of the criticism cos he was abroad, and came back refreshed… As you yourself say, the door swings both ways.
    The reason I love Untold is because it is so optimistic, every other media in this country is anti-arsenal, I can’t pick up a paper without them gleefully “reporting” that there is a mass exodus about to happen, or Wenger has lost it, Cesc wants to leave, it’s ad nauseum! You know I respect your cat amongst the pigeons approach, it sparks debate, but it seems to me that your base argument is look how man u do it, thats what we should do.

  42. Hi DP

    Thats a really hillarious reply you gave to Stevie E. You should not reply here just to balance things out but you should reply if you genuinely beleive that someone is saying wrong over here.

    BTW have you ever tried to post positive replies on the ultra negative sites like LeGrove. I would really appreciate your idea of balance if you do that too.

  43. Not that I normally agree with Dark Prince but he does usually have a point. I happen to think that a fair number of Wenger signings were temperamentally unsuited to playing for Arsenal but might have appeared to be when viewed in another context. Conversely, I seem to remember players like Bergkamp, Vieira and Henry as being unsuited to the Italian league.
    Denilson is patently unsuited to the English league. Diaby is the smallest 6’3″ player I’ve ever seen. Someone should have taken Jose Antonio Reyes to one side and told him to go in high and late on Gary Neville with no intent to play the ball. Maybe they’re not deserving of the criticism they get/got but there are always reasons why the crowd gets on the back of certain players.

  44. @Stevie E- it could be possible that Rooney was so frustrated with the criticism that he himself elected to run away and have a peace of mind to come back strongly.

    Whatever the assumptions are, eventually he did face some strong criticism b4 leavin for his holiday, and he did came back strongly and performed well. Which means, the criticism did play an important part.

    And i disagree that my arguements are always based on how other teams do it. Yes, i do compare sometimes, but many times, i do argue without comparing. Yes, in this article, i’ve used an example of Rooney, maybe few articles back i compared our Youth policy to Barca. But my arguements are not always based on comparison.

    But even if i’m comparing, it doesn’t mean my arguement is wrong. Sometimes we do have to learn from other teams as well. But it doesn’t mean that i’m a supporter of the other club and neither it means i’m anti-arsenal. Its jus i want the best way forward for my club, which sometimes could mean learnin from other’s success as well learning from our failures as well.

  45. Hi DP

    Even I like your views here sometimes just to ensure that we dont become blind followers and stop crticising ourself.

    But sometimes you realy tend to ignore anything in favour of Arsenal. Like if we lost 10 points due to bad defence and 15 points due to bad referees, you would still point out the defensive mistakes but ignore the bad referring. Thats where I would like to see a more balanced approach.

  46. @DP – we could be here all day, I’m gonna just agree to disagree 😉

  47. @Abhishek Kumar- being overly optimistic and positive too is also genuinely wrong. So thats why i try to balance out.

    As i’ve said b4, i only comment on sites which i respect. I’ve commented in Desi Gunner’s site and maybe a few other relatively new sites as well. Other than that, i treat the rest sites as tabloid sites. I’ve no interest in commenting in the rest.

  48. @Woolwich Peripatetic- agree with your point. And appreciate your comment as well!! 🙂

  49. @Abhishek Kumar- i think the ref issue is something which needs a bit more investigation/analysis b4 we can make any judgement. I believe the Untold representatives are, as we speak, trying to go further into this topic.

    But i’ve never denied any the influence of refs in our games. I have stated before that the refs have made bad decisions which have cost us points, maybe even more than anyother team, but to conclude that there is an ‘Arsenal bias’ is a bit too premature. But i do agree that there is an English bias in Epl, and maybe that could be a reason for the Arsenal-bias we talk about. But still it wil take a lot more investigation to prove something, a lot more.

    Plus, in this ref issue, i tend play the Devil’s advocate. Its jus to try to show how other fans or the refs or the FA might view it. Maybe it can discourage some here, maybe it can encourage to investigate further to prove it. But i hope people choose the latter.

    But as i said b4, its nothing against Arsenal.

  50. Dogface, I have seen another multiple poster with uncannily similar tones to threads on several other arsenal sites, this dude is especially prevalent on online gooner. Amazing anyone has the time!
    Trolls, media, fans all have it in for arsenal at the moment, talkshite are in the middle of a talk about nothing except slagging arsenal off day.
    As for the player abuse, it seems to be getting worse every where, witness utd players removing themselves from twitter.
    I seem to remember lee Dixon getting it for a while when he arrived

  51. @ Tony, it has been quite disheartening that some sections claiming to be Arsenal fans would rather read and regurgitate rubbish about our players that support them.

    Last year there was a sustained attack on Fabianski, Theo and Arsharvin by these people who claim to be supporters rather than an embarassing oxygen sapping baying mob.

    Not once did any of these players come out and say that their audible groans, boo’s and general negavity was a motivator to improve or boosted their confidence. Instead their performances got worse, but the strange cod pyschology spouted by some ‘supporters’ would then have them blaming Wenger for being a bad manager as he was failing to motivate his players. And/or in addition to this, call the players in question weak mentally because they couldn’t rise above the sustained weekly torrant of abuse by the media and their own fans.

    Conversely I have heard many players come out and thank fans for lending their voice and getting behind the team and them. Obviously it made a difference to them whilst they were playing or they would’nt of mentioned it.

    It is still suprising to me that some people are expertly able to dissect an Arsenal player to highlight his failings but without much thought or examination replace the discarded player with one ranging from mediocre to completely rubbish.

    Luckily for us Fabianski, Theo and Arshavin haven’t been driven out of the club (yet) like Bergkamp and Henry were, but I sense that the mob may of got their wish with Denilson, which is a shame really.

  52. @ Dogface, keep up the good detective work.

    Some of those names ring a bell as I recall wasting my time talking to Snehal, Dan Green, Vretou, Plain and Sharad. What is so suprising is the amount of time and effort he/she put into posting rubbish on here daily. It’s almost a desparate cry for help really as they just want to talk someone. Maybe the Samaritans barred their number or something…

  53. Just thought i’d weigh in with my tuppences worth and say i for one one am absolutely pissed off about dennis bergkamps appointment at ajax!
    the silly sausage should be giving bould the elbow at arsenal or even bo primorac- there is a constant clamour here for the enlistment of adams et al to teach defense at arsenal and to those i merely say Pah! return to talkshite radio and the Sun-
    So Dennis bergkamp may have ajax “DNA” but he is assembled the arsenal way.

  54. I used to watch the reserves in the 90s. Whenever Jimmy Carter played a group of 3 or 4 pensioners would turn up and give him a hard time. After a while we found out that it was his dad and his dad’s mates!

  55. First of all, i forgot the name i’ve used before, but it should be something like that. I think that’s my 3rd comment on the site.

    I think that’s happening right now with Clichy. Our Fans have never forgiven him the one mistake he did in 2008. Since that mistake, every other mistake was twice as bad, as it actually was. And we’ve seen it with the keepers. Fabianski’s confidence was low, very low thanks to the support he has(n’t) got.

  56. Dogface, really breathtaking stuff.
    They took too much serious energy out of our community.
    Removing the vitriol from varun alone is so welcome.

  57. Let us never be fooled again and thank this poster, whoever they may be, for enlightening us in the ways of the troll.

    For them, it seems, this is a full time job… I agree with Gooner Gal – one has to wonder exactly what this was all about – and as Mandy says; other blogs get fooled by these guys and get sucked in – I do notice that nobody really here had a good word to say about any of those accounts – they were tolerated and our attitude was ‘inclusive’ – more fool us.

    This community has its differences but it is healthy and we should not be any less inclusive or suspicious of our fellow posters but we should take note when things don’t seem quite right… bob – yes, the energy was leeched but I hope that it will be returned in the form of resolve now the truth is out and the boil lanced.

    Mr. Troll – a message to you, thank you for giving us a really good chuckle and teachig us a valuable lesson, your pathetic posts after we banned all of your accounts are now framed and hung on the wall of the toilet in Untold Towers – they aid in our deffication you see as some shits, no matter how little, take a good deal more concentration to pass than others.


  58. When Bergkamp was at Inter he was played out of position (as a lone striker) rather than as support to someone else in that position – what has now come to be known as a No.10.
    Think about the last FA Cup Final that we won on pens v Manure when he was forced to play that role (and was very poor) and you can understand why he and Inter didn’t get on.
    Arsenal recognised the problems he was having and got him to sign on the promise of playing deeper and, after an unproductive intial spell, the rest is history.
    Fans in general don’t understand the subtle differences between different roles on the pitch and, frighteningly often, don’t want to.
    Some of the most successful players in Arsenal history became so after changing their position but such events of coaching brilliance are to often forgotten in the mists of time. A great pity.

  59. @DogFace

    I’ve seen postings by those names on other blogs as well. I guess they want to hijack all Arsenal discussion around the net and spread their venom. I seriously wonder what sort of person/people would spend their entire time doing this.

  60. @Richard B

    Good point about change in positions/roles. Henry of course had his too. But Bergkamp once said that in Italy their attitude was that a striker is supposed to score goals. Everything else is secondary. SO if you are not scoring 1 every 2 games you are useless, no matter what you may be/may be able to offer the team in other ways.

  61. Richard B,
    Would you apply the same reasoning to the need for a new striker (more clinical/poacher/next eduardo, etc.) and having RvP back in the No. 10 (if not downing st.)?

    also, do you think the out of position has been a factor with some of our starters, or is flexibility/versatility enough of a good reason for the way that Arshavin, Theo and Bendtner, possibly Nasri too, have been deployed? I don’t know if there was an option or not, but I’d appreciate your thinking on this. cheers.

  62. Re changing a players position (Bergkamp having been moved to lone striker by Inter and back to support striker by Arsenal) it’s interesting to recall that forty years ago half the Double winning side was made up of players who had been shuffled around by Don Howe. McLintock, Simpson, Storey, George, Graham and arguably Radford (who moved to the wing and then back to central Striker) all switched in the lead up to that momentous season.One or two even moved during it.
    Wenger has a record of playing people out of position for a while in order for them to develop part of their game that he considers needs improvement. Henry out wide to gain confidence, Diaby ditto to make him use his left foot more,are just two examples.
    Currently I think we have several players who are struggling to perform to the maximum due to the position they are asked to play. Nasri obviously craves to play in the centre (where Fabregas naturally plays) but he’s much better out wide than is Arshavin who also wants to play centrally where his lack of defensive nous would be less exposed.
    Walcott, in my view, would be better employed cutting in from the left (think Overmars) and, funnily enough, I think Bendtner (if he stays) would benefit from a continued stint out wide as Radford benefitted from.
    Clichy, I don’t think, appreciates playing behind Arshavin or playing in a 4-3-3 as opposed to the 4-2-3-1 that he played in originally.
    Stewart Robson (who is worth the Arsenal Player subscription on his own) said several times at the back end of last season that RVP should be withdrawn to a support (Bergkamp) role and we may see it happen if Fabregas and Nasri both leave. If that happens Chamakh is going to be under greater pressure to play both better and more often although another central striker looks like he may come in to lend a hand in that position.
    Jonathan Wilson (of Inverting the Pyramid fame) predicts that teams will reduce forwards so much that 4-6-0 will become the norm for many sides especially away from home. I’m not so sure but I can see 3-2-4-1 being a way to go but Wenger will still demand more creativity from his back line than most managers and fans will still not understand that defending set pieces is as much about attackers that can’t/won’t defend as it is about defenders not doing their job.
    Contrary to popular belief our defenders, in open play, had the best record in the Premiership last season. At set pieces the height of the forwards coming back to defend was exposed.
    Interesting times!

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