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August 2021

Hip Hip Hurray for the birthday club and a bit about the game

Untold Arsenal on Twitter @UntoldArsenal

By Walter Broeckx

So here we are at the end of period. A period of 125 year. And ready to have another 125 years to look forward too. Well I don’t think I will be there but when we arrive at that moment in time,  I sure hope my grand grand grand children will be looking at the Arsenal and saying: You know your great great great grandfather saw that game on TV 125 years ago  and at that time he was writing for the best Arsenal blog in the universe: Untold Arsenal. One can but dream on a day like this.

Our club is in a great shape financially to survive any storm that comes the football worlds way.  And with the economy in these days we must take nothing for granted. Thanks to our careful acting board, our careful acting manager and his vision we don’t have to fear the disinterest or the dead like some clubs have to do  who are toys of their owners and who can spend billions in the transfer market. No we will just be doing it our way. The Arsenal way. The Right way.

So on this day, 11th December, I would like to thank all those who made it possible for our club to survive those 125 years. Many clubs from that period have disappeared. Many clubs have known heights but have faded. We are still there an no matter what will happen in another 125 years we still will be there. Heaven forbid that our board ever brings our long term future in jeopardy.  Oh and 11 December is a great day to celebrate a birthday. And nobody better placed then me because by accident I also reach a milestone on this date and have a nice round number behind my name. I just think it was my destiny to become a Gooner in my life.

On to the game. Playing and putting a special meaning to a game is always a bit dangerous.  I remember Ajax playing a special game for Johan Cruyff when he retired on one of his retirements. They got beaten by Bayern Munich with then Gerd Muller and others like Paul Breitner having a party and defeating Ajax with 0-8. Since that day I always feel a bit strange before a special game.  So I always feel more nervy about special games as it can get to the players as their normal pre-game routine is a bit different  and disturbed with all the special things going on.

And I don’t like us playing against Everton. Somehow they always make life difficult for us at the Emirates. In fact over the last season we felt more comfortable at their ground and had some good wins over there but in the Emirates it has been a struggle. I remember one of the twitters when Arteta came over and was it Aaron or Jack who told in his twitter that he was happy because he hated playing against Everton because Arteta was a very difficult player to play against.

Well with or without Arteta it was once again a difficult game. And this was mostly down to our bad finishing. We played not sharp enough and it was visible that our both full backs were not (yet) used to playing there. The overlapping runs we see from our left and right back could be counted on the fingers of one hand in the first half. On the other hand it made sure that  Everton could not hit us at the counter. Like Cruyff once said: every coin has a good side and a bad side.

The killer ball lacked a bit today or was played too late or not sharp enough and so we ran offside far too many times. But one should give credit to Everton for not rolling over. They made life difficult and well that is what Everton pay them for.  We had enough chances to score but or we missed or we faced a really decent goalkeeper. I must say that Howard is one of the most reliable goalkeepers in the EPL for many years now.  But not being in front at half time was  not a reliable image of how the game had been going.  But if you don’t score you cannot be in front. That is an old but still valid law in football.

The second half started with a scare. Walcott tripping himself and going through his ankle but he could carry on and was our most dangerous man in the first 20 minutes of that half. Everton tried to go forward a bit more but they didn’t create much. But I saw a few gaps opening up and Everton tried to take advantage.

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Time to act was the thought of Wenger and when Rosicky and Arshavin were preparing themselves to come on it finally happened. Song with a magnificent chip over the top of the defence and Van Persie with an even more magnificent finish.  A very special goal for a very special match. The curve of both pass and shot was absolutely world class. Just like and typical Arsenal.

We then killed off the game in a very mature way. We wanted to win and as 1-0 was enough against a very hard and stubborn defending team we just went for killing the time. And we surely have improved on doing this since last season. It was a bit nervous at times but I never felt that we would panic or do stupid things.

The only worry I had was if the man in the middle would come up with something ridiculous. Well don’t know yet if he tried but he certainly didn’t succeed.

So we won with what is worldwide known as an Arsenal-score with that oh so typical 1-0 score line. A well fitting tribute and honour for the history of our club. And even though we have gone further and the 1-0 period is a long time ago I don’t feel ashamed of it, in fact I feel very proud of it because name me one club that has a winning score line named after it?

Another example of what a special club we support. Thanks for the 125 years of memory, Arsenal.

Up and forward to another 125 years ! Long may Arsenal live, hurray, hurray, hurray!


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40 comments to Hip Hip Hurray for the birthday club and a bit about the game

  • WalterBroeckx

    Oh and if you look at the league table we are in 4th position for the moment. Not that bad for a team that started with only 4 out of possible 15 points after 5 games….

  • marcus

    Song looks pretty decent these days…Last season I though he did a great impersonation of Frank Rijkaard…but this pass today was


    Remembering his Gullit bullet header last year…could he even…


    cover for Van Persie…and would that make him the Impersonator?

  • This was one of the best games I’ve been at – it had everything… but also – nothing special – maybe my great grandchildren will look back too and say that the old fart was there.

    The goal – oh the goal. From my angle – I had a perfect view of it – forgive me – I’ve had too much wine, but it’s inspired me to poetry:-

    Ode to RvP’s Left foot

    A thousand replays from angles
    A million realities of cascading chaos
    I saw the ball as sixty thousand pairs of eyes
    Oh so gently; a rainbow’s arch over the thumping sinew, skill and muscle
    Our captain’s raptor eyes sparkle – no need to check his run
    Thump, thump, thump – on stride, on side
    I am alone, shock numbs as he chambers his shot
    The chaos returns, a million internal voices shout
    No fucking chance, not a fucking chance
    Violence struck boot to ball, so pretty it’s beautiful
    A moon is wrenched from orbit square and clean, the cleanest of kills
    NOT A FUCKING CHANCE my mind screams, the chaos howls
    Then I am screaming; we are screaming at the air organic
    But all we see is celebration
    And all we hear is confirmation
    As we greet it as a long lost friend

    I thankyew

  • WalterBroeckx

    Dogface, this was almost as beautiful as the goal itself…

  • WalterBroeckx

    And if I may add another thing I noticed that after his goal Robin went to the bank and celebrated his goal with the most frustrated players in any team: the ones on the bench. A great gesture from THE CAPTAIN!

    Arsenal better buy some extra bronze for another statue….

  • Brickfields Gunners

    Happy 40th birthday Walter !

  • Len

    Dogface, do you perchance have a book of published prose? I would like to purchase. That was a great piece of poetry.But what a goal!

  • Moses owuor

    Wow Dogface,thanks,that describes it

  • nicky

    Also to be remembered in our 125 years’ history, is the fact that we are the only Club never to have been relegated from the top Division of English football. What a record!

  • Ah you beat me to it Walter; I was about to write Happy Birthday and do a post here just for you! That will teach me to get up earlier – but then you do have one hour’s advantage of me what with being on Belgium time.

    Can I add that the statues are wonderful – Chapman imperious at the end of the South Bridge, Adams arms outstretched from that goal against Everton winning the league (I was there, in the north bank, with my old pal Roger, as the ball flew towards us – how nice that Mr Adams is now there to greet me as I pass him each game on the way into Gate D).

    And Henry on his knees. Sublime.

    Fun in the ground too, although we have had several return of the old faithful now, and it has less of an impact. But it was great to see Pires again, and Henry made a nice speech as we all sang “Sign him up”. He looked like he was going to cry again.

    And Walter, I got you a programme. It will be in the post on monday.

    Happy Birthday,

  • Sammy The Snake

    Congratulations to all Gunners & Gooners on the 125th anniversary of a truly special club.

    Oh, and happy birthday to Walter too!

  • liban

    Dear Walter,

    What a great piece of poetry. Your blog is my favourite. If you come over to Kenya, you will not be short fans. So many gooners in East Africa!! Can you escape the winter, 13 months of sunshine here!!

  • walter

    I hate to admit it (well not really bothered that much) but in fact I just woke up as a 50 year old…
    In my country a bit of a special anniversary….

    Thanks for your best wishes anyway 🙂

  • WalterBroeckx

    Thanks for the programme Tony, will be looking forward to it

  • Phil

    Excellent stuff Walter have a great birthday!

  • FinnGooner

    Happy birthday Walter. 50? that’s not even half of what Arsenal is so you are not old (Arsenal isn’t either).
    Article was great. When Arsenal celebrates 150 years there must be 2 more statues for Lord Wenger and RvP.

    DogFace: That poem was great… is there anymore of them? ordo you need more wine to write them?

    Tony: I’m trying to find time to read your book that I bought from Arsenal online store with my christmas decorations 😉

  • Prasanna Veeraraghavan

    Article is great Happy birthday Walter. Now thats one more reason to celebrate right?

    Sadly could not get to see the match yesterday as ESPNStar blocked out this match to show Liverpool and Manchester United’s matches. Don’t understand the meaning of the same though. India or for that reason most Asians would love Arsenal after Manchester United(true that is the number one loved club across this part of the continent) and so never understood why they black out Arsenal matches these days. Primarily they show Liverpool games these days so I believe its a play to market Liverpool more than Arsenal

    Not only this it took an eternity for the Sky Sports website showing live updates to update the GOAL. Somewhere around ten minutes. Also around four or five minutes for the final whistle to be updated. May be they were expecting Howard Webb to come up with some bizarre decisions.

    Nevertheless a good victory. A good celebration. A good birthday for one and a great read here for me. It kind of makes me feel live I saw the match.

  • Shakabula Gooner

    Happy 80th birthday, Walter.
    As you left that out, I suppose we are free to guess.

  • LRV

    That was a goal that ‘really’ was. RVP! No more comment neccessary.


    By the way Len, did you work at MARI in Southwark?

  • LRV

    Sorry Walter, forgot to add Happy Birthday Buddy.

  • RedGooner

    Anyone watching, Stoke v Sp*rs ?
    Dont get me wrong Im thrilled stoke are 2-0 up but the antics time wasting and the Ref doing nothing about it is a joke.

    They have must have spent 10 mins wipping the ball with their jerseys for throw ins and everytime that they have a goal kick its taken from the opposite side of the penalty area.

    sickening to watch. not football at all.

  • Happy Birthday Walter,in Uganda we love you very much including Tony. So business next who do you guys expect we might meet in the draws and when are they? Tony our rich clubs do you think they are Gona do wonders in Europa? I’m seeing a lot good teams down there.Greetings from Kampala and looking forward to get some lovely articles from you guys.

  • @Redgunner , i was watching the Match and Stoke where leading 1 – 0 but my generator just stopped. In Nansana, those are outskirts of Kampala we have spent 3weeks without power so we are dreaming of a Xmas holiday with no power and a New year without power.
    Man we a leaving in hell down here.

  • Anne


    It’s only gotten worse since you left that post. If Stoke goes on to win this match, it will be a complete ref robbery. Clear Stoke handball on the line, should have been a pen and a sending off. Adebayour goal wrongly disallowed as offside seconds later. And I was reading this thread when Spurs were reduced to 10 men, so not sure how that happened. But Stoke shouldn’t have the advantage. Well done Chris Foy! (sound of one hand clapping)

    But is it wrong that I’m not feeling all that sympathetic?

  • Anne

    Happy Birthday, Walter! And great poem, Dogface. I’m jealous of everyone who was at the match 🙂

  • RedGooner

    Anne I agree, Sp*rs unlucky to have 10 men Stoke should have 9 men. Chris Foy at his worst.
    I am not sure he got a single major decision correct including the Sp*rs penalty, but as you said they should have had 2 more.

    Well we gained 3 points on them so thats something I guess.

  • Marcus

    It’s a welcome to the real world for the Bobby Dazzlers.

    Sorry, I forgot their real name for a moment. The TTs.

    The Wannabes it must be said are a good team these days…but good means nothing these days….

    Re the Financial cauldron…await Tony’s next bulletin with interest..

  • bjtgooner


    Happy birthday, hope you are having a great day.

    @Anne, Red Gooner

    I didn’t see the Spurs match and I have mixed feelings about the result. I don’t have much time for ‘Arry and I thoroughly detest the way Stoke pretend to play football. For the Spuds to drop three points is good for us as we try to catch them; but what we really want is fair play for all teams and have an official who ensures same if necessary.

    From the comments above it looks as if the Spuds were seen as a threat to the manures or oilers and therefore a decision was taken to reduce the level of threat. It will be interesting to see how this match is reported and also how Chelski v Oilers is refereed tomorrow night.

  • AnT

    Happy Birthday to Arsenal and Walter!
    Too bad couldn’t watch the game live yesterday. But to see the goal and Dogface’s poem, that’s all that I need to see/hear.

  • RedGooner

    Happy B’Dday Walter.
    Kampala sorry to hear that you really didnt miss much.

  • Van Deenstra

    Hey, long time reader but infrequent poster. A bit off topic but I couldn’t find an email address and I thought this would be the perfect community to ask.

    I’m currently a student at Indiana University and will be coming from the states to study abroad in London for the spring semester. As a big Arsenal fan (I’ve watched literally every game in all competitions for the past 4.5 seasons) I was wondering what the best way for someone like me to go see a match would be. I’m not exactly sure how ticketing works and was hoping someone could enlighten me. Are champs league tickets comparable in price to a big game like Manchester United or are they much more expensive?

    Besides getting to see my favorite team for the first time in person I’m also keen on playing some soccer with the locals. Once again, not sure what the structure is like here. I played at a pretty competitive level in high school and have kept up with the game so I’m looking to get a good competitive game in something like once a week. I know the standard of play is generally higher over on your side of the pond so would pick up games suffice?

    Well I’ve asked more than I intended to so don’t feel like you have to answer everything. Any insight would be much appreciated.

  • walter

    The icing on the cake for a perfect weekend, day…oh just say it Walter : for a perfect half a century….

    “Untold Arsenal celebrate the 125th anniversary game in positive mood from the perspective of an overseas supporter – who by chance celebrates his 50th birthday today. Untold Arsenal”

    It’s all getting a bit too much now… Thanks to you all… a very big thank in fact….I’m getting a bit overwhelmed now…

  • Kentetsu

    A bit late to join the party, but congratulations with seeing Abraham (I suppose you have that expression in Belgium, just like in Holland). A nice gift from the Arsenal as well to mention your birthday on their mediawatch.
    It’s good to see Untold is getting recognition in Arsenal’s mediawatch, with being mentioned a couple of times in the past few weeks. Perhaps they might even some day link to a RefWatch or Ref Review…

  • Anne

    Congrats, Walter 🙂 And happy birthday again.

  • Nuetey

    I was in a meeting n watching the game on my fon, i shouted when rvp scored that amazing goal, everyone turned 2 look at me but i never felt embarrassed. I rather wanted 2 show them dat goal.

  • John L

    happy birthday walter!

    you make it easier to be a gooner sometimes, with your unwavering commitment to the club and its philosophy. i enjoy reading your thoughts and all the effort you put into this site! keep it up!

    i also agree that dec 11th is a good day. as my father turned 60. we have both been avid overseas gooners for years. i have enjoyed many moments watching our team together in the wee hours of the night or hotly debating over skype. and like others here have said…i hope to pass my beloved arsenal to my kids someday. what a special club, with special fans of all ages, from many places and walks of life!

    Victoria Concordia Crescit! and a happy birthday Arsenal!

  • Gooner4mIndia

    A belated Happy Birthday to Arsenal and Walter! What a fantastic weekend it was…RvP Scored, Arsenal won, Spurs lost!!! I hope it gets better with City dropping some points. I guess a draw in today’s match would be the most favoured result for us…

  • Shard

    Sorry I’m late Walter, but here’s wishing you a very happy birthday. I can see even Arsenal have recognised your turning 50. That’s amazing, but absolutely deserved. Keep up the great work Walter.

  • sahil

    @Prassana Veeraghavan: Man why do you even bother to comment on le grove? It is not worth it. They are a bunch of ******* over there. I just read what they saying… they are just cunts,end of.Stop going there man that shit site doesnt deserve any right thinking gooner.
    Meanwhile belated happy birthday Walter.

  • NiyiGiggles

    Happy anniversary Gooners, a well deserved win as well. I’m happy to be part of this history. It’ll be said of me that I as well was a great supporter of this great club when I’m long gone! Long Live Arsenal!