As the industrial sludge dwellers of the north pick up their knuckles and prepare their black puddings

Oh what a week, what a day.

The chauffeurs are chauffed, the postilions are in position, and the trusty Austin 7 is in the drive ready for the 88 miles from here to Arnos Grove underground station.

And there I was a few days back thinking that these Burnley people were jolly nice folk who would respect the trauma of Arsenal last weekend and come to play football.

But not a bit of it. Hardly had the blood dried in the operating theatre than their dickhead manager was up on the podium saying that the crippling of Ramsey would make no odds, Arsenal don’t like it up em, you have to get in some hard tackles early on to let them know you are there, we have to stand our ground, its a man’s came and you have to expect injury…

Of course those weren’t his exact words but they give the gist of his statement carried by most of the popular press.  Put briefly it says, “we are going to kick Arsenal and if someone gets maimed, then tough.”

Even if he wants his players to behave like this, he could have said it in private.  Given that he said all this in public, goodness knows what he said in in the dressing room.  Probably, “death’s too good for them, so make it painful.”

What will we have in response?

This is of course the Arsenal, so we know how to handle knuckle on the floor thugs.  We do it our way, with wit, humour and victory.

We will have at least one Ramsey flag – “as big as a house” according to Red Action.  Ramsey has become in one week the symbol of our Resistance, and that is always a good thing.

We will also have Walter and the Benelux mob, over specially for the day via the ever obliging EuroStar (ho hum).

We will have right on our side for a single Arsenal player is worth a hundred northern mercenaries who can’t read….   oh hang on a minute I think I turned in Alfred the Great on the eve of the battle with the Northumbrian Danes.  Sorry.  But it is a bloody good squad, and I tell you, Nasri is turning into one of the most sensational players on the planet, and although it is commonplace to laugh at Bendtner, the quality he was showing against Stoke was up another level.

We will have fish and chips before the game.

We will have Theo (probably on the bench) and Diaby (according to the Birmingham Mail who know a thing or two, it seems).   We will have Arshavin back running between the stumpy fingers of the opposition.

There will be the journalists desperate for someone else to get crocked so they can run out their “Arsenal too fragile for the title”.

And we will have a club that has just overtaken Chelsea in the Deloittes rich list (something that I for some reason for extraordinarily funny – rather like going up to the Queen and saying, yes I know you are the boss, but I want my face on the postage stamp).   OK that makes no sense, but how did Chelsea get themselves into such a state that they are slipping down the rich list when they have raped the entire gas and oil production programme of Russia, while little Arsenal who make money from football and a bit of local property selling in a dead market, earn more than them.   That’s what you get for employing Terry mate!

So yes, we will be there, we will make noise, Walter and I will toast each other at the Auld Triangle alongside Billy the Dog (who today will be played by Ian, son of Roger, to whom “Making the Arsenal” is dedicated – assuming you have been following the story.  You can buy Making the Arsenal from me and I’ll sign it for you – there’s a link below).

And that, ladies and gents, is what it is all about.

Wouldn’t it be funny if football managers stopped thinking about football as a fight and instead turned to science fiction for their imagery.   None of this “they don’t like it up em” stuff and instead “we will take their penalty area into a new time field, because they don’t like temporal modulation at Arsenal”.

Ho hum.  See you there.

Love and kisses



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16 Replies to “As the industrial sludge dwellers of the north pick up their knuckles and prepare their black puddings”

  1. As the industrial sludge dwellers of the north pick up their knuckles and prepare their black puddings

    You forgot to mention the dusting off of flat caps and their 3 legged Whippets.

  2. Can one of the Belgium guys explain how long a ban Witsel got for breaking that guy’s leg? It was a few months, wasn’t it? Are the rules different in Belgium and England?

  3. The Burnley mis-manager is truly a dickhead as you say, but he doesn’t bother me.

    I say welcome to Walter and the Benelux mob. I hope they brought along their lucky mascots. While we are at it, I also welcome Tim (7amkickoff America) to London, the Emrates, and the game. I hope our boys will welcome you with a 3 or four goals differential in our favour.

    It is time to make the hacks choke on their own vile gory varbage.

  4. What an absolutely spectacular blog. Am a relatively recent admirer of your work but I wholly and completely agree with the guy (yesterday?) Who said that this was the best written and most insightful arsenal blog on the internet.just woke up in mexico, on honeymoon, and must now figure out if there is a way of seeing the game. Let’s score 5 for ramsey and get the confidence sky high.

  5. @Tony:
    It seems AW has a another problem on his hands doesn’t he…..

    No more revealing than this week. I look forward to the solving of this… No doubt it will be clever.
    Wenger has a degree in both Economics and Engineering….

    So we got the Economics right….

    How about the Engineering? So maybe kinesiology plays a role… or Physics?

    Got it… six foot lads size of MT, SX who can play Footsie.

    Or; maybe a mostly English Arsenal side who will make up the next English National Team that wins the World Cup.

    What will that do? And, how close is Arsenal to that?

    First; If Arsenal have English lads on the National side this will actively silence the pundits and the anti-Arsenal sentiment.

    Huh? Well if you break Theo’s leg in 15 different places.. And, at some point he will be the best English born player ever. Than I defy StokeCity (Pulis & SX,) Birmingham (Mc ASS, Ridgewell), Blackburn (Fat ass, Dunn/Samba) to do it… As you break Arsenal legs you crush the National side

    How close are Arsenal? Walcott MF, James Shea GK, George Briswell-Hall D, Rhema Obed D, Nicholas Yenarris D, Bartly, Eastmond, Gilbert, Hoyte, Ayling, Cruise (All Defenders)

    MF-Wilshere, Walcott, Byles, JET, Meade, Lansbury, Watt, Randall, Henderson.

    F-Murphy, Simpson, Freeman, Deacon

    Not bad!

  6. Theo! He’s got his confidence back.

    This would’ve been a howler if a few players had brought their shooting boots…still, can’t complain.

    Keep on believing!

  7. Hahahaha…

    From The Sun, that bastion of reputable journalism, “England forward Walcott had been anonymous for most of the game but fired in on the hour mark and Arshavin struck at the death to seal all three points for the Gunners.”

    Need I say more?

  8. Tim…

    Walcott blossoms later than most of his rivals….Good news for Arsenal

    Compare Theo to Rooney…

    Rooney pro’s- prollific goal scorer now, best player for England now.
    Theo pro’s- Good player now, good enough for full England squad now, good enough for Arsenal team now…
    Rooney’s future- can he get better? No (my opinion) Where is his motivation? Already won EPL 3x’s
    Theo’s- He will be the best player to play for England… He will be the best Arsenal squad player inthe next 4 years….What does he have to look fwd to? Everything!

  9. By the way Lewin really needs to address Fabregas… PS he needs to stretch the hamstring with weights while standing on a box???

  10. So nice to see Theo answer critics with his game. Nine more like that and he,s booked his place in the plane heading for South Africa.

    Methink the ref. did a great job blowing against virtually ALL “mistimed” tackles and brandishing the yellow enough times to put the fear of God in the Burnley boys’ hearts. The game was much the cleaner for that. Was this an honeymoon from the ref for Arsenal or a conscious decison from FA, passed on quietly to the refs to stamp off mean tackles from the game? Time will tell.

    Certainly, Bendtner forgot his scoring boots at home. That was obvious for all to see but did you see (or hear) Ems faithfuls cheering him as he was substituted. I thought that was very nice of the fans because, as Huigian claimed Ruud told him in Real Madrid, goals are like ketchup…sometimes, they don’t come – no matter how hard you banb on the bottle and much later they just can’t stop coming even when you don’t seem to do much.

    Great game.

  11. Fem – totally agree about Bendtner. It reminded me of the game last season against Blackburn when he was awesome but missed about 6 clear chances. It is funny that way sometimes. He was all over the pitch, passed well, held up the ball well, but just couldnt score. he needs to think less and just go in with the attitude “I am going to knock the ‘keeper over with this shot” sometimes. Thankfully we didnt regret it.

    Not much you can do about Cesc and that hamstring. I know from personal experience that sometimes you get an injury like that and no matter how much you strengthen, how much you stretch it out, it just keeps coming back. Complete rest is all that really fixes it, and Cesc ain’t getting much of that until August.

    Good performance overall and GREAT result. Anybody expecting flowing, sweeping wins right now is crazy.


    This is what it’s all about. Nervous wins and scoreboard watching. I get the feeling a lot of our fans have forgotten what this feels like and still expect us to win 5-0 every time out. It doesnt work that way, folks.

  12. Oh, and before people start going on about “Bendtner just can’t finish”, please everyone take a calm breath and remember that Cesc was being criticised for not scoring more last year. And Didier Drogba and Ian Wright weren’t even playing at the top level at this point in their careers.

    Oh, and Jack Wilshire, the youngest PL scorer this season after today. What a prospect!!!!! And JET scored twice on debut!!!!!

  13. Tony

    First comment: my sister, who is a consultant doctor at a renowned London hospital too close to the KGB for comfort, said that it was quite possible, medically, that Ramsey might be back for the start of next season, not the one after that. That’s not saying he will be, she was saying that the medics were saying that Ramsey’s injury was nowhere near as bad as Eduardo’s. That’s not medical case notes, its medical gossip from a horse’s mouth (not the surgeon’s mouth). Let’s hope the gossip is on the money……

    Second comment: I’m glad Theo displayed some handbags first half. But the challenge he was wound up about got the ball fair and square. And the defender got to the ball first.

    Third comment: if Arsenal must do without Cesc for a couple of games, so be it. Nasri and/or Rosicky will step up to the plate. Diaby will do likewise for Song. Because that’s what togetherness is about……

    Fourth comment: Theo yesterday showed he has all the weapons in his armoury, with the exception of heading (didn’t get assessed, not a failure to show it) to be a great attacker. Whipped fast cross to a striker’s head. On the money. Precise cross along the ground to the six yard line. On the money. Running past defenders to collect defence-splitting pass. On the money. Fluent shooting on both wings. On the money. Collecting the ball down the channel and recycling it. On the money. Not a perfect performance, but the first sustained 90 minutes displaying his box of tricks again and again. To approach world class, that must be his week-in, week-out performance. Against the top sides, not a side struggling to stay up. When his colleagues are down, not only when they are up. But it was the first demo that he has that potential in reality, not only in Arsene’s mind……..

    Fifth comment: yesterday Arsenal had the luck at the end that deserted them at Birmingham in 2008. A lucky escape, not a wrongly awarded decision. That’s the way it goes sometimes…..

    Sixth comment: the time to judge Bendtner is the end of the season. A lot of Gooners were sounding yesterday the way they were about Eboue last year. He did 50% perfectly yesterday. It’s just that the important 50% he totally screwed up. A bad day at the office. A line to be drawn. And the next game to prepare for…….

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