How Wenger Used the Doom and Gloomers to his advantage

I have been interested of late at the way the Anti-Arsenal brigade has been developing its tactics.

In the olden days (ie last year) they would mostly spend their time saying that our players were all leaving just like Flamini and Hleb before them.  Cesc was going to Barca and the world would end.

Now the reason this story lasted for quite so long was that it looked viable.  Using the old “no one in Britain speaks alien” tactic the papers kept reporting that Cesc had said that he would love to play for Barca and wasn’t there a plane leaving in 7 minutes.  In fact he had spoken in Spanish and said, “Why don’t you toddle off to Barca you stupid Daily Express reporter, there is a plane leaving in 7 minutes. ”  But since no one here speaks the lingo, no one bothered to check.

Such claims were boosted by the old Flamini and Hleb routine.  They had played a couple of moderate to ordinary seasons for us, and then one good year.   So the doggerel and gibberish (ie D and G) fans said that it was a total disaster that the pair were leaving and Arsenal were now a selling club.

In fact it was clear that both players had reached their peak and were on the way down – and so moving them on was no bad move.  If Barca would pay far more for Hleb than he was worth, fine, and if Milan were to cripple themselves with an insane salary for a guy who had done well for one season, that simply lessened their spending power.

The brilliance of the Wengarian tactic was to use the Doggerel and Gibberish brigade to his own advantage.  The Bar-Bar-Barca-Sheep mob and WC Milan both picked up the message, and thinking they had a line into the Arsenal camp, took  on the players.

We may not that since then neither has been a huge success.   Hleb has moved on and publically spoken of his regret at leaving, and Flamini has sat their taking the dosh for only playing half the matches.

The question now is, how can the doggerel and gibberish doom and gloom brigade be used again to Arsenal’s advantage?

For a while they have just been talking tosh – as with the post that pointed out last year that the simple difference between Arsenal and the rest of the top four is that we didn’t take our chances.  In fact we had scored the same number of goals as two of the other top four teams.

Now we have the guys saying, the club is in a desperate state – no forwards, rubbish full backs, no reserves etc, when we sit second in the league and top scorers.

Now this may seem like nonsense, but consider this scenario.

Let’s suppose that there is a club that is near to bankrupt. We’ can call them Man IOU – although Liverpool, Hull, Portsmouth, the Tiny Totts, Everton  would be names that are just as good.

They want to sign someone.  Arsenal move in and say, we are interested.  So the price goes up, and the player’s salary goes up.  Manchester or whoever, puts in more money that they don’t have and bids away.   Having just spent what is it – £40m in Bankers Fees on getting their bond off the ground they now have to pay far more in salary and fee for a player they only half thought they wanted in the first place.

Then the doggerel and gibberish mob move in and say, “Arsenal are crap, we can’t even sign that player, we don’t sign anyone,” and the deal is done.  The doggerel mob have done Wenger’s bidding, and sunk Manchester even deeper.

So, my point, young fella-me-lads is that the D and G brigade are incredibly useful.  They help in the great task.  They con the opposition, while we move on guys we don’t want, and don’t sign players we don’t want.  Of course they are conned themselves into thinking that they are opposing the Lord Wenger when in fact they are simply doing his work.

Meanwhile, in deep consultation with Billy the Dog, and with a quick email from Mr Wenger’s cat, I can tell you the fantabuloso news….

We have more players this week than we did last week.

All the following people are able to walk, and some of them can even run a bit despite not playing recently

  • Bacary Sagna – ready to play
  • Samir Nasri – back in training, probably bench tonight, ok for the weekend
  • Theo Walcott – as far as I know didn’t get injured at Stoke!
  • Aaron Ramsey – all fit and raring to go
  • Alex Song – back from holiday, although still taking the CJD pills which are now essential when entering the UK.  Back for Sunday.
  • Jack Wilshere – fit again after a bout of fibliocontritis
  • Gale Clichy – fit again
  • Emmanuel Eboue – back from holiday as per Song
  • Fran Merida – not sure but I think he might be ok
  • Nicky Bendtner – ready to play – maybe against Villa on bench, probably in the game next weekend.

Now you have to admit that is quite a line up of people we haven’t seen since some time around the stone age.  (Incidentally did you know that the stone age only ended because they ran out of stones?)

So for the D and G team the new story is – these players will want to leave because they can’t get a game.

Meanwhile, here’s the jolly old team


Sagna, Gallas, Vermaelen, Clichy

Denilson, Cesc, Ramsey

Arshavin, Eduardo, Rosicky (Theo) (Vela)

Others: Eastmond, Merida, Bendtner, Wilshire, Nasri, Wilshire, Campbell, Silvestre

Aston Villa – who will make up the numbers tonight, played their first match against the local Aston Brook St Mary’s Rugby team.  The first half was played under rugby rules and the second half as football.    Villa however soon tired of this arrangement and these days play the whole match following the rules of rugby.

The local name for the city is ‘Bromwicham’ – or “home of the witches” and this history is celebrated each match day with a burning of a visiting supporter – so it is very important not to turn up too early for a game.

The number of Arsenal supporters who are allowed into the ground is limited because it is claimed we tend to stand up.    I think they also got annoyed when last year a bunch of us approached one of the queues of Villa supporters who were waiting to enter the ground and looking particularly moronic, and said, “The trick is to rub the sticks together guys”.

The area came to the fore in the Industrial Revolution, but has since been in decline, and is now thought to have reached the Dark Ages.   In six years time the Romans will arrive, walking backwards, and Aston Villa will join the Italian League.

English is not spoken locally.

(c) Tony Attwood 2010.

45 Replies to “How Wenger Used the Doom and Gloomers to his advantage”

  1. Is it safe to presume you refer to the Smalling-deal ?
    I must say that if Wenger thinks he is good enough for that money he could be ok but I really think that a player who hasn’t played 10 games for our team when he is 20 he will be seen as not good enough. So if not playing 10 games for Fulham at that age… I really wonder what the fuss is all about.

    It would be a great job on the other hand that by telling that he is intrested he pushed MU over the edge and they offered him more than he could be worth. It looks like Vidic will be leaving at the end of the season and SAF needs backup and is willing to pay over the odds for a 20 year old unknown CB.

    It could be he is good or turns to be good (if he comes in the hands of Wenger maybe ?) but really I wouldn’t pay 8M for a player to sit on the bench.

    If we have payed 10M for Vermaelen that was for a player, unknown for most part of the fans, but who was playing for Ajax a few years and was captain of the team at 23 years old and so you could say he had experience and know what football at high level meant. This Smalling boy doesn’t has experience. But 5 starts in 22 games doesn’t seem that many for a player if you ask me.

  2. Interesting to note that you can play Arshavin as both a striker and a goalkeeper. I knew the guy was talented, but I didn’t suspect that it was to this extent! Who needs Almunia when we got Arshavin! (However, don’t you think he might prove to be a bit too short for a GK???)

  3. Sorry Tony but I think you made mistake in your lineup, there should be Bendtner as goalie because he is tall enough to play.

  4. Ah you are all getting too good for me. When I included Giggs as our full back it took several hours for it to be spotted. The second one of these which I did a few weeks back (and for the life of me I can’t remember who it was I put in) also went unnoticed for a while.

    It all goes back to the time when I put in a school friend from 2 centuries ago in the Carling Cup team.

    Can’t fool anyone any more.

  5. err. Times reported the Smalling deal was around 12M. And that is indeed alot for a unknown 20 year old.

  6. I love it !!!

    Wenger is bankrupting the competition and selling off his cast offs. I always thought Wenger was a genius now I am sure. I get it so that is why we are linked with so many players wenger doesn’t want to get them cheap and puts up a smoke screen to who he really wants; some unheard of player for peanuts

    GREAT points

  7. I like the pint sized Russian in goal.

    Hell – seeing as we lack tall lanky fellas, let’s stick Almunia n all up front and route one the balls to him.

    I think all the media hype about Smalling makes people assume that he’s better than Bartley or any other prospects we have at London Colney. And considering that Vermaelen was £10 mil, it’s a joke to even suggest that Smalling who can’t make the Fulham team is worth more than the Verminator.

    It’s like that really bad joke that values Carlton Cole more than we paid for Andre Arshavin. I didn’t know height costs that much these days.

  8. i thought that the smalling deal actually wasnt completed yet. i thought this was a case if Man IOU getting all pre-emptive on our ass – as far as I can tell (at this moment in time) despite them announcing on their website they’d signed him, and the BBC blindly reprinting whatever they are told – its down to the player where he goes now as arsenal have matched utds bid (a la ramsey).
    8m seems a lot for a potential reserve, but then we signed walcott for about that (plus bonus for appearances or something) so lets not worry that Lord Wenger has no form in actually spending money when it represents value for money!
    If Lord Wenger says he’s good enough, then I trust him as knowing slightly more about potential than me. (players i’ve talked up in the past include Paul Dickov, Arturo Lupoli and Ian Selley…)
    Equally if we dont sign him thats 8m that we’ve still got that Utd dont (and will owe increasing interest on).
    I think the phrase is win win!

  9. A tall man Smalling? What will we do with a short man Bigging then?

    What a nice thought, Tony; Arshavin in goal and the Aluminium man as CF; brilliant. The Aston Villans will be so shocked by the trick they will try to place all their shots underneath him, fearing that the press might castigate them for lobbing balls over a smallie.

    CjD pills, ehnnn? I hope Song will not become too BullCow-ish to be of any use.

  10. I’m keeping the time Tony, till somebody spots the other deliberate

    3 hours and counting

  11. Tony writes like Wodehouse. And Wenger says Arshavin is playing as CB and Walcott is the goalie so that there’s only a 88.75% chance of him getting hurt.

  12. I just realised that the game is not shown on TV in the UK ?
    Well then this time we are the lucky bastards as it is shown live in Flanders on TV.

  13. Arsene Wenger’s Cat…

    If I were able to write like PG Wodehouse I would be fulfilled beyond the dreams of man.

    As the great man said,

    I know I was writing stories when I was five. I don’t know what I did before that. Just loafed I suppose.

    PG Wodehouse, Douglas Adams, the greatest comic writers ever.

  14. I would’ve figured Arsene to be a dog person…

    Tony, excellent insight, as usual.

    It seems like any player linked with Arsenal suddenly goes up 2-3 mill pounds in value!

    The great man knows exactly what he is doing.

  15. I’d like to see every newspaper or TV report that claims a player was linked to a club be forced to reveal who the hell linked that player.

    That’s of course if it wasn’t the said journalist sitting in a pub on Fleet Street concocting the said link.

    “Linked with…” What a crock of bull crap.

  16. I actually can’t recognize Smalling until the news about him linking with us…

    Maybe agents’ important job is now trying to link their players with Arsenal because they will be more popular and then can earn more money..

  17. A little off topic but it’s always good to know what they’re across the wilds of the Lea valley.

    CABE is a toothless organisation who’s existence you have to query but I found their disdain entertaining.

    And whilst on the subject, Gary Neville is attempting some good PR:

    Both projects using the same designers…oh dear!

    Very interested to see if West Porn can seduce the Olympic Stadium out from under the ODA’s nose.
    Considering they are screwed if the Hammers don’t take up the residency on the stadium (Official plans for the site after the Olympics seem to change every week, because they don’t really have one), I think that move could salvage the club.

  18. *
    A little off topic but it’s always good to know what they’re up to across the wilds of the Lea valley.

  19. Sir Tony, I’m glad you gave the D & G birgade some useful part to play in the grand scheme of things. That should make them feel a bit important. Bait and switch Wenger? Smart Frenchie!

  20. Tough, tough game tonight. I will be quite pleased with a draw. So 1-1 it is and Almunia, thrust up front after Arshavin proves a more than capable keeper, to have a role in the equaliser by leaping energetically for a cross from Rosicky, but completely mistiming his jump, flapping at the ball, and confusing all the Villa defenders who allow the ball to fall softly into the net untouched.

  21. Glad Sami is back for this evening, hope he gets a few minutes off the bench to find his feet again, limbering up ready to STUFF MANU just he did last year.

    Think goals, Sami, just think goals.

    And yes, Woodhouse is splendid. Nothing finer than Psmith Journalist, where our comrade hero finds himself in New York, pitted against the slum landlords of the town, and winning big.

  22. On the ground where Chelsea lost we got a draw and should have won the game.
    Maybe we could ask to measure the hight of the goal and the width as well. It looked to me that the goals were not big enough.

    Campbell did good replacing Vermaelen and was solid together with Gallas.

  23. a draw is a draw is a draw.

    villa is tough. not a bad result by any means. but yes, with a better bounce or two, we should’ve won. poor rosicky might have trouble sleeping tonight.

    i thought sol was fantastic.

  24. So Wenger not bidding for Ribery at £15 million was an attempt to cripple Bayern Munich with an outrageous transfer fee? It’ll be nice if we bought someone awesome that I’ve heard of at a huge fee – it’s exciting, like winding up a huge credit card fee and then wondering how the fuck I’m going to pay it off.

  25. I think there is something wrong with the eyes of Alan Shearer. He said he didn’t see any long balls from Villa.
    Now it could be off course that because of the fact that the pictures I see in my country have to come over sattelites and other far away projectiles in space and therefore I maybe see another game but I pretty much had the impression that most of the balls launched forward by Aston Villa in the second half were long balls.
    I’m not saying all the balls but they played rather a lot of those “run after it-balls”.

    And damned now the injury’s from Vermaelen and Eduardo…. how the hell is this possible ? Like AW said: Sol did great but will he be able to produce 3 full games in one week at his age ?

  26. If Vermaelen has broken his leg it really looks like Birmingham is a doomed place for our players to break their legs. 2 years ago Eduardo and now maybe Vermaelen…

  27. chelsea are in cruise control, it will take something inhumane from arsenal to claim the title…

  28. For the moment it looks so urs truly critic, but end november Chelsea had 11 point advantage and suddenly screwed up. At that time they seemed unreachable for every other team. They can have a downfall again and now we are only a few points behind.
    If we can ceep the gap as close to 5 points after our next three games I really believe we have a chance… if there comes an end to our injury’s.

  29. Vermaelen is tough as nails. From his reaction, it seemed like it a mere bruise.

    No matter what, with Sol and Song back, we’ll be fine. We gotta believe!

  30. Yes we will… BTW why is Martin so angry…

    Is it the new Arsenal story now for sometime…

  31. Dress like Spurs, play like Spurs! That kit is awful and has to go, never mind your red pinstripes. I’ll design them our away kit if they like. It will be a yellow top with blue sleaves, blue shorts and yellow socks with blue top bits. There, job done! I hate marketing people sometimes! For that matter that horrible all blue abomination is not much better. Fed up with all this punter fleecing.

  32. “In fact it was clear that both players had reached their peak and were on the way down – and so moving them on was no bad move”.

    what rubbish!!!!! that was just uncalled for, it was clear that wenger wanted to hold on to them, they might have been a gr8 success if they had stayed, but that wasn’t the case and that AND THAT was their mistake, not that they didn’t have it in them, they had to re establish themselves in new environment which they cudn’t……hiding wenger’s inability to make flamini sign his contract before it entered it’s last year with ur incredibly outrageous expert analysis is not fair…although i admit he has corrected his mistake and signed everyone for long term….appreciate the fact that wenger has corrected his mistake, rather saying he hasn’t committed one…..

  33. I thought Flamini said he wanted to move to be closer to his family?
    Why would he lie?

    He hasn’t complained much about being a sub at Milan for nearly two years.

  34. Just heard the Sky Sports reporter refer to Rooney’s dive that ended the Unbeaten run as a “challenge” from Sol Campbell. What planet are these guys from?

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