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July 2021

Sunderland 1 – Arsenal 3 : a longer one, some interesting things about referees and booing and hating players

By Walter Broeckx

A win on a bad stream on the internet usually looks bad. But on this occasion it made it difficult to talk about a few key incidents at the moment because I really could not see it properly. But now that I have seen it on a good TV screen I can give you my opinion on the what looked key decisions in the game.

First the penalty. Koscielny made no contact with the ball and did catch the leg of the Sunderland player. I don’t have a problem with the penalty.

The not given goal/red/foul/whatever-incident involving Altidore and Sagna.

The facts as I could see them: The ball goes in to the direction of Altidore and Sagna. Both players are holding each other by the shirt and are doing a pulling contest.  So both players are committing the same offence. And this is a real dilemma for a ref. Do you give a foul against Sagna then you don’t punish the Altidore foul. Do you give a foul against Altidore then you don’t punish the Sagna foul.

So what can you do as a ref? You wait a bit and then blow the whistle. Usually you give the advantage to the striker. It is clear that the ref blew the whistle while the wrestling was still going on and Altidore was not having a free run on goal.

Now the rules are clear: when the ref blows his whistle the game is stopped. If you look at the images you see both Sagna and certainly Jenkinson stop their run.  The fact that Altidore took a shot that crept in over the line was as important as a spectator taking a sip of his drink. It doesn’t matter at all. The game was stopped.  One could even argue that Altidore should have been given a yellow card if you want to do it by the book.  Don’t worry I won’t push it that far.

The card then. People argue saying it should have been a red card. But then we must look at the moment the foul was made. Altidore was not moving clearly and free  towards goal when the ref decided to blow his whistle. Only after Sagna let him go (the moment the ref blew) he moved  free towards goal.  And you have to look at the moment the ref decided that there was a foul (remember Altidore not having a clear obvious goal scoring chance at that moment) that he has to take a decision about the card.

The fact that Altidore went on after the whistle and tried to score a goal does again have no importance. It is the moment the foul was made and then there was nothing really on and there was certainly not an obvious goal scoring opportunity to be seen.  This would have been different if Altidore would have been on his own towards goal with Sagna running behind him and then pulling him back. Then it should have been a red card.

At the end of the day the ref decided to punish Sagna and give him a yellow card. He could have punished the foul from Altidore just the same, as both players were pulling each other’s shirts.  The foul could have been given either side.

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I think the ref wanted to make sure that neither of the offending players got a real advantage from their foul and therefore made the foul decision and in fact every decision can be defended in this case.

Saying that a goal was disallowed is however incorrect according to the rules.  The game was dead after the whistle.

Regarding the remark on MOTD where they said that the ref should have waited the advantage I just want to ask: which advantage? The advantage to Arsenal because of a striker making a foul on a defender? Because when a striker makes a foul on a defender you should not give advantage but give the foul.  Or the advantage they wanted to see giving the advantage to Sunderland and give them a goal. But then it would have been a goal given  from a foul from the striker on a defender and that is against the rules.

Were we lucky at the time? Yes and no. For the reasons above mentioned. Most of the time the refs just give the decision against Arsenal and well… the ref did just that. By giving a foul against Sagna.  I wonder if he regretted his decision immediately after he blew?  Well if only we could look inside his head.

Enough of that for now. Let us talk about the game and the football.  I think the only negative one can say is that we should have wrapped up the game at half time. This is how football can be unpredictable and surprise you.

Our top scorer from last year is finding it difficult to find the net for now. But what is promising is that Özil showed that he can put the right weight on his through balls and he will put our strikers on goal on a lot of occasions. Now we only have to finish them off a bit earlier than we did today.

And then we have Ramsey. Tony mentioned it in his quicky. And I commented on that and someone called me out on that. He said that we preach unity (we do) and he said it was not done for me to have a go at the Ramsey haters.

Well my dear friend those who have wished Ramsey to have his leg broken again, those who have wished that he would die, that he would get cancer, and I have seen those things with my own eyes on social media are not persons who deserve to be called Gooners.  By wishing those things on one of our own players and certainly on one that have suffered so much for defending our colours is a complete disgrace and places them outside the Gooner family. So I don’t want them around in our unity.

By saying such devilish words they have placed themselves outside the boundaries, and it is not me who have placed them there. They should have done like I have been doing all that time when Ramsey was battling his way back: supported him.  And like most of us on Untold have been doing.

And how quickly those persons forget. Last year they called for the head of Ramsey. Then Giroud. And now next in line is Theo Walcott. I don’t blame Walcott for missing his chances today. I just do what I have done with Aaron when he missed. I just do what I have done with Olivier when he missed. I just say: come on Theo. Just keep doing your best and it will come back. And I bet that before we know it Theo will make them shut up. Just like Aaron did with them. Just like Giroud is doing this season.  Come on Theo:  just make them look stupid once more.

Criticism for a bad game is ok. Wishing someone dead, with broken legs or terrible diseases for Arsenal players is NOT ok.

Oh and by the way we are top of the league. Both the injury league and the proper league. Not bad I would say.

86 comments to Sunderland 1 – Arsenal 3 : a longer one, some interesting things about referees and booing and hating players

  • Al

    thanks Walter a lot!

  • AL

    Thanks for clarifying the disallowed ‘goal’, Walter, this is how we were seeing it also. Sometimes I really wish I could be given an audience with those pundits on MotD, how can they be so blatantly consistent in misinforming people.

  • Indra Purkay

    We should thank Arsene for knowing what he was doing. Without his belief, Aaron would not be playing, even though he was struggling last year.

  • Nizam

    If the Sunderland goal had stood,who knows. The gunners could have lost.I am no soccer coach but I do know basic things .
    Walcott aint clinical enough. The defence were lucky when a Sunderland cross eluded everyone.It’s still a problem area even if the big German comes back.
    On the positive side,it seems the German’s arrival has prompted Ramsey to raise his game.
    These are early days. 5 wins on the trot.I expect the gunners to draw or lose by the 8th to 10th game.The law of averages will see to that.
    That’s why I have a sneaky feeling the red faced decided to let go because all empires have shelf life.I would be very surprised if Moyes can retain the epl.

  • Al

    as i remember there was no any noise on MotD about ref’s horrorshow on arsenal first game against villa…

  • Walter,

    Why are posts disappearing? My post just disappeared. What’s happening? I have seen people make this complaint many times. Now it has happened to me.

    Please check it out!

  • Nizam,

    There was no Sunderland goal, so there is no way it could have stood.

    And please lay off Walcott. People used to say the same about Ramsey and Giroud. It’s a team game. We win and lose together.

  • Klaus

    “… Oh and by the way we are top of the league. …” 🙂 🙂

    Thanks for the detailed study of the ‘çontroversial’ incident between Sagna and Altidore.

  • Dave C

    Negativity helps no one. Ramsey has always been talented as is Walcott. I saw an article showing Walcott’s stats compared to Mata, Bale, and a few other ‘big’ names over the past five years, and his stats were better than all the others.

    Positivity helps morale. Get behind the club and players; all else will fall into place.

  • Dobromir

    Don’t post when you are drunk next time. Really poor article.

  • OMGArsenal

    The AAA and moaners who pretend to be Gooners conveniently forget a few things:

    1)Walcott had about 5 chances today, 3 were saved by the keeper and 1 was a missed header (he is weak in that area) and 1 was off target but what really impressed me was his immediate understanding and link-up with Ozil! this is a very promising sign….
    2)There were many opportunities to score today for both sides, not just Sunderland. We took 12 shots on goal, they had 5, we scored 3, they scored none. their onlygoal was a penalty.
    3)Our defense did very well, our midfield was excellent and the Ramsey/Giroud scoring machine is just getting warmed up. Our passing from defense to midfield to our strikers was excellent all game.
    4)The referee had some tough decisions to make and he made them so AAA, it all evens out in the end, right?????????

  • Nelson Wong

    No issue offensively except for injury. There is no need to blame or say bad things about Walcott. He has a few bad games in a row, that’s not good but as long as the team got other people who can shoot, there isn’t too much to worry about.

    He must keep trying with the right way. For one, he will score sometime if he’s doing it correctly. Secondly, his move will continue to pull opponent defense thin making chances for others. It would be terrible if people give him too many pressure that he start to make wrong runs.

    For the attack half, just hope no more injuries.

    Defense, well the problem in the centre is still not solved. EVEN WITH FLAMINI !!! Whenever the Big German goes missing the defense become chaotic and even the young Pole can’t play between the poles properly. Some say the German is bad, they don’t seem to notice what’s far worse ie. without him. It seems someone will have to take command at the back when the German isn’t there.

  • Dave C

    I’m not sure this proves anything because stats can be manipulated, but it surely shows he’s better than some give him credit for.

  • Klaus

    Absolutely no idea why some guys complain about our defence … 3 goals conceded in 11 !! games in open play ?!?!?

  • Ray from Norfolk, Virginia

    Upon re-watching the game, Flamini (who I am not crazy about after the Milan episode) looks like a key element in front of the back four. His presence in the absence of the BFG did help.
    I am also willing to give AW the AAA-ass-whopping tightrope award:
    Arteta injured? Flamini on a free.
    Cazorla out? Ozil on a record fee.
    Mertesacker ill? Vermaelen is back.
    Podolski’s goals missing? Ramsey to provide in attack.

  • elkieno

    Yes boo I had all 3 comments this morning awaiting moderation even after posting twice after first one. I posted many tines over the years so don’t know what’s wrong.
    Great game as usual when arsenal involved, they always give us fans some thing to crap ourselves over dont we?
    Only Arsenal.. I see spurs finally scored from open play, this season they defo are better…
    Ozil sick and still had a blinder first half, some challenges he would have been given a foul for in Spain I feel, but not in epl.
    I really don’t like it when any player is fouled and throws his arms up, just play whistle.
    UTD were dire last night and Palace were just awful, awful, awfull. Its ironic that RVprick left us to go there and continue carrying a team. Without him they are terrible, I wonder how they will go in cl.

  • elkieno

    I cant wait for the Mrs, Daughter and brother in law to leave the house and go for lunch with her friends (try set brother up) so that I can watch the game in peace and without shitting my pants. I just cant make sense of anything when I am nervously shaking my leg, nibbling either of my index fingernails, mind wandering about ‘what ifs’ and trying to not be too loud.
    So I will be able to watch it again and take note, but with my luck, I will still start getting nervous all over again!
    BTW the following makes me wonder if this has happened to anyone before.
    Last night (game KO @ midnight) when Giroud scored, myself and my mate lept into the air in celebration as you do, but in the confusion he poked me in eye so I couldnt see the replay and the next 15 min of game. When I was all better we talked about how we should celebrate the next goal and that it might be a dampener on it cos we will jump up and then worry about doing it again. Well lucky for me the next 2 goals were fine we did it no probs. But surely after a goal this and others has happened to all fans at some time?

  • Arvind

    Yeah Walcott’s next on the agenda; sadly. I wonder we can’t just enjoy a good win. Are we the only club who have fans who behave like this? I guess not..but sometimes I wonder..

    Thanks for the clarification on the disallowed goal decision Walter.

  • Ray from Norfolk, Virginia

    There was no disallowed goal, only a whistle that neither Sagna nor Altidore was able to hear.
    Had it been the other way, such as Giroud vs Roberge, most refs would have given a yellow to Giroud for continuing the action after a whistle… while wearing an AFC shirt.
    It reminds of how van Pursie was expelled at Barcelona in the CL despite him telling the ref that he never heard the whistle.
    Of course, the media and the AAA would have gone bonkers against any Arsenal player doing that…
    Incidentally, di Canio was dismissed because he is Italian; had it been Martin O’Neill, no such treatment would have been deemed necessary…
    And, for the sake of GOD, I hope the Republic of Ireland does not appoint Martin O’Neill as their next coach after Trap goes to the trap.

  • Arvind

    Yes that’s what I meant Ray. I haven’t yet seen it though but it sounds clear enough. Whistle’s gone, hence no goal.

  • top Goooner

    Tony pliz update our table where is money, money money money, and the like.

  • AL

    Off topic, Moyes is reported as having said he will reprimand Tom Daley (sorry Ashley Young – their skills are so similar its easy to confuse the two), about his constant diving. Well, lets see how the refs respond, they surely can’t use the line that they were conned, now that we all know what a serial offender he is.

  • Rupert Cook

    Excellent movement and passing through out the game. Ozil is an amazing addition, shows what you get when you buy world quality. Arsenal could have been three or four up by half time but Walcott’s finishing was poor. Everyone has an off day and with the supply he’s getting I’m sure he’ll put a few away soon.

    Agree with Nelson about our defence, there are too many gaps allowing opponents to run through. I like Flamini’s toughness but his positioning is often poor. Still when we have the ball we look like the best team in the league. And with Ramsey’s new found striking ability we may not need another striker. Ramsey, the new Lampard? Right now Ramsey’s the better player.

  • The font

    The first half we looked like brazil at there best . started the second half poorly heads dropped could have lost this game in previous times . jenkinson flamini and kos wer’e visibly rallying the team to focus and get back on track . Ramsey was relentless . Ozil sublime but was substituted at the right time. Theo was a massive distraction to there defence always had two defenders around him his pace and ozil s accuracy. Means all teams will have to follow . Allowing jack and Rambo more space. Wenger played a blinder finished the game with all our defenders on the pitch protecting the points.
    Negative Gibbs was a little exposed down the left.

  • nicky

    If I was offered the post of honorary technical assistant to Arsene, the first change I would make down at Colney, would be to instruct Gibbs to use his right foot only, for a whole month. In the Sunderland game the number of times he cut inside beautifully from the left and then with either a shot or a defence splitting pass possible, he had to slow down and move the ball on to his left boot.
    This guy’s attacking mode could be near genius if only he could use both feet.

  • Thanks for the clarification, but, the media have misinformed the world, and people agreed. I still think we would have wrapped up the game in the 1st half. OG Get well soon.

  • Brickfields Gunners


    You cannot talk defeat and expect to have victory.
    You can’t talk lack and expect to have abundance.
    You’ve got to send your words out in the direction you want your life to go.
    Joel Osteen

  • vacong

    I got into an heating argument again with my Chelsea supporting bro, he said why did the ref blow the whistle? lucky. That was a penalty, I said no he touched the ball it looked like from one angle. I was defending ramsey since the leg break as I saw the potential before that my brother just said shit team shot players he’s rubbish. walcott has no brain, I said he assisted more than Bale. I told him to watch the full match he said what The MOTD pricks say, reminder to myself. not to talk about football with him. Then in cam to Man united fan Uzi I said ashley young dive again he said and? Eduardo? Pires? I said yeah but how many? he said it doesn’t matter was the counter arguement? At least he doesn’t admit it like stupid walcott… whats your point? I said how may times have you won with 12 men? and then get phantom penalties to save you? And how many times have go deflected goals? doesn’t matter… how many broken legs have Arsenal had? Then he said typical Arsenal fan always complaining about ref we don’t!! What have you got to complain about? your like 9 million in favour of? what complain to get to many penalties?

    Have you noticed van persie has not been injured yet because you get protection? Nah its the shitty training they get at the emirates…

    Well I am glad there are sane people here as it drives me up the wall! But hey ho I changed my betting from 3-0 to 3-1 and one me some money. Off to comfort eat lol Great article Walter love you work keep it up!

  • alex

    I agree with your referee assessment.
    I must admit that I am one of the harsh critics on Ramsey. The tugs you mention are not fans and I guess should be reported to CRIME WATCH not here. Fact is you can’t hide behind this tugs to win your argument. Ramsey was rubbish. There is no question about it . The team has suffered a lot during his bad spells.

    Wenger kept him but still don’t forget it was at the expense of the not wining and losing points. The team suffered a lot. So you cannot brush it easily Ramsey should have gone on loan some where else. Definitely I can say he should not be near our 11.I am not jumping like you because I support the team now and then.
    Well I can be angry as much as I want ultimately the decision rest on Wenger. I can only be happy for the boy but still I reserve my question of why to include him in the squad and as a starter when clearly was not ready.
    Is not only a game changer I guess will be Walcott future decider. We heard it all about Ozil assists. No wonder Ronaldo scored a lot. So what about our Walcott ? What can I expect ?
    Well from what I had seen so far I am afraid that Walcott is not a good finisher. Surely Ozil had a few thought about the Sunderland game. If the pattern is the same and Walcott keep on missing chances after chances as we saw it yesterday there is little can be done. The obvious thing is the bench.Time for someone else to step up. Will he be Akpom or Sanogo or The Ox ?

    My bet is on the Ox and Poldi. Walcott needs to up his finishing but that is not his strength.

  • Brickfields Gunners

    Nickey’s comment about using both feet got me wondering about the now silent AAAAs – how are there faring with both their feet in their mouths and their heads up their arses ?
    Not that I’d be losing sleep over it , mind you – just thinking aloud you see !

  • Brickfields Gunners

    Doggone it ! Life can be a bitch sometimes ! Here’s a fetching tail of a dog’s day afternoon argument ! You’ll howl , sit up and then roll all over the floor and end up playing dead in mirth !
    Thanks to Google translator !

  • nicky,

    I’m so glad to read you comment on Gibbs. He needs to use his right foot to shoot. Sagna shoots with his left when in position to. Gibbs should try too. Plus he (Gibbs) gets into good shooting position after cutting in so much that if he learns to shoot with his right, he’ll get some goals. He had a few opportunities yesterday in very good positions but he still had to pass because in split seconds, the open spaces were closed as he moved the ball to the other foot.

    Nice observation!

  • Fedra

    Good analysis of the Sagna/Altidore incident.

    Your description of nasty, vicious language as mere “devilish words” is my one criticism. No footballer of whatever shirt deserves to be so maligned. The trolls that pedal this stuff are a bunch of spineless cowards who hide behind a computer screen spewing poison – pathetic losers. As you correctly said, they are not and never will be part of the Arsenal Family.

    With regard Ramsey I always had the faith. I am not cleverer or more insightful than my neihjbours but, perhaps like Wenger, had the patience and knew in my heart that somebody of his quality would come good again with careful nurturing. Aaron Ramsey has carried himself with great dignity during his difficult journey back to form and deserves credit for that alone.

  • bjtgooner

    Walter, good article and thanks for the clarification of the Sagna/Altidore wrestling match.

    I agree with “The font” – Walcott’s pace and movement are a massive distraction to the opposition defense and even if he scores fewer goals than last year he is still worth his place in the team. The opposition will always try to double mark him, but they cannot double mark Ozil, Cazorla, Giroud and Walcott, someone should always be in space.

    Just to finish my comments re Walcott – he will refind his scoring touch, all strikers can go through a barren phase, give the guy some slack & the goals will come.

    I was impressed with the way the whole team played yesterday and Ramsey was superb – but he was not the only one – it was a great team performance – and we need to remember that many first team players were unavailable.

  • alex,

    I like your consistency. You may be a pathetic moaner and a poor excuse for a fan but by golly you are consistent.


  • colario

    Take a look at this BBC Football page.
    There are two links on Manure’s game two on Everton and links to other EPL games a link to Barca and Madrid’s games. Bale’s first game but no mention of Arsenal! I wonder why!

    A word about Walcott. It is not happening for him at the moment all the more reason for giving him our support. He gives 100% every minute of the game and for that alone deserves our support.

    You know you are a ‘fickle fan’ when the moment it starts going wrong for a top player you immediately believe ‘he should be dropped or he is useless’.

  • gouresh

    in Teo’s own words, when he said this sometime last yr, “I am in instinctive striker and i prefer not to have time to think in front of the goal!” now i blame Ozil as he is the problem, because his passes are so sublime that it gives our strikers time & space to score. if you want to call his sublime passes a problem, thats another matter 🙂
    flamini was good, seem to sit in front of the defence quite nicely. Laurent should know better not to slide in box when the striker is moving away from the goal.
    as for jack, i really hope he stays more on his feet, we know that he’s been kicked around, but so many times he could have.

    the game was a delight to watch, we can only get better.

  • Va Cong

    The difference now is Ramsey is not trying too hard and enjoying his football so there is less mistakes. You could see when he wasn’t fully fit and the leg break still on his mind he was inhibited but his movement was there, like he said it just clicked now so more goals to come from him 🙂

  • alex

    You can call me moaner but that does not justify anything. In your eyes if stating facts are moaning clearly shows your child brain.State your facts but as I say there is no point to engage with a kid
    Bottom line is You have nothing to contribute.

  • WalterBroeckx

    About Walcott I just want to say that as long as his efforts end up between the posts things will come good.
    As a striker in a good position you should always aim to get the ball between the posts. The keeper might save it and that is then good goal keeping. But if you blast it wide then that is for me more missed than having the keeper saved it.

    I think Theo should try to keep his shots lower that makes it more difficult for the keeper to go down quickly. So says Walter who in his playing days was a top scorer in his Saturday pub team and a keeper in his Sunday league team. 😉 It helps to know both sides

  • alex,

    You are not stating facts. You are moaning. Get over yourself. The team does not need your type of fan. Go on cry about all the things that makes you sad. But lay off the team. They are clearly doing better than you.


  • jambug


    It seems to me we have no room to complain about ANYTHING EVER all because Pires dived (once) and Vieira got sent off(mainly for desent) a lot.

    Somehow in these peoples minds Pires and Vieira have given referees the justification to stitch us up at every turn and we should just put up and shut up.

    I have said on here a few times, until we change the medias bias take on everything we do we have absolutely no chance of changeing the officials attitude towards us.

    Early season has already set the agenda.

    An absolutely diabolical performance from Taylor against Villa and the media do everything in there power to justify every bad call he made. He gets away scot free. He now knows that in the future however bad, however biased he is against us he will be absolved of any wrong doing.

    Atkinson blows his whistle a fraction too soon. A tricky call, could of gone either way. Could of let play go on. He made a mistake. Problem fot Atkinson was it favoured us. Look at the shit he’s got. Do you think for one moment had those same events happened the other way round that MOTD etc. would give a toss!!! Do you think they’d be slaughtering the ref? Well we know the answer to that don’t we. TAYLOR !!!!

    Look at the diveing issue. Bale, Ronaldo, Gerrard, Rooney, Young, all are, or have been, serial divers, but due to the media witch hunt launched and maintained for years against Pires he would still be on the top of most neutrals list of ‘serial’ divers and he does’nt even come close to the antics of that little lot.


  • Ray from Norfolk, Virginia

    Right on!
    And what press? On so many issues, you get a job in the media if you follow instructions issued by a few people who hate something; I do believe they hate AW for the Invincibles and AFC for the last 15 years because they do not want the people to watch beautiful football; because then, you would also want a beautiful life, beautiful politicians, etc… So, yes, we have a few bitter men who decide for everybody.
    Reminds me of a quote here in the U S of A that libertarians like to utter: “The Soviet Union did not go away, it just moved here” and I think that this quote can be used in reference to the media’s propaganda regarding football matters.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Have a feeling theo may have been carrying something from the England game I was a bit surprised he played but we are short of options at the moment. The type of extremist fan who wishes disease and death on players is not wanted on this site not wanted by the club clearly not wanted by the majority in the stadium, probably the sort of people not wanted by their family and colleages. But they will always be appreciated at the lane I guess if that is a crumb of comfort for these unfortunate individuals

  • jambug

    Theo Walcott

    I think one of the ways you can judge how good a player is, is by the way you react to there absence, or conversly there presence, on a team sheet.

    Take spurs last year. To me there was 2 players that I wanted to see absent when they played us. Bale and Defoe.

    Utd it was RVP and Rooney.

    City it was Yaya.

    Liverpool it was Suarez and Gerrard.

    Conversly as fans of those teams I bet they are the players that they want, first and foremost, on there team sheet.

    Now I’m telling you from what I hear from friends, the lads in the tea room etc., the player they like to see missing from our team sheet is Theo. For me he is the 1st one I want to see. His pace alone changes the whole way a team has to set up against us. But not only that his assists are high and his finnishing is good. I agree niether are perfect but the stats don’t lie and he is up there with the best.

    Yesterday he was a nats from a hat trick. The keeper made good saves. They wasn’t bad misses. On another day if he did exactly the same thing they would of nestled in the corner.

    4 good games, just missing that final finnish, for now, and they’re on his back.

    Honestly some of our fans are unbelievable.

  • AL

    The media will put any negative spin on anything associtaed with Arsenal. The Man U manager lambasted Young for diving only yesterday, but I bet like you say if anyone who cares to do a search on diving in the premiership a week from today Pires will be up there as one of the worst. I have got to the point of not caring what the press says, and to be honest I wouldn’t care at all if it didn’t set the agenda for the refs as you point out.

  • jambug


    Exactly mate, nor would I, if it didn’t set and agenda…….but it does !

  • jambug

    Sorry ‘an agenda’

  • Goona Gal

    Err….hello people…it’s been a while and I feel I’ve lost ground in regards to discussing/commenting on Arsenal and football in general.

    I was a bit apprehensive of what I would find on here, but I must say I’ve really enjoyed reading this article and the majority of the comments thus far. It’s as if there has been a bit of house cleaning in my absence.

    @ Walter – you have cleared up a few questions I had about the game. I’ve been a bit disappointed with the BBC’s ongoing theme of ‘controversial win’ loop since yesterday regarding our game. Especially when you consider the embarrassing game at Old Trafford and the Chelsea loss.

  • Goona Gal

    I would like to just say Aaron Ramsey aka Rambo, has made me so happy. At times I have felt like a lone voice banging on about his ability and what a good player he is. When he signed his new deal a few months ago, the ugly murmurs got louder by so called fans.

    He has been Arsenal’s key player since the start of the season and I hope he continues in the rich form he is in. Giroud comes a close second and deserves a lot of plaudits too.

  • Tom

    @ Walter Broeckx.. This is exactly why I come on this site every now and again . Your explanation and analysis of the disallowed goal as well as some other points you’ve made , make it a worthy read. Maybe that’s why I voiced my disappointment with your dig at so called Ramsey haters because I expect you to be above such a petty behavior . People who wish injuries upon players or worse, are not to be taken seriously and should be ignored all together . Perhaps you feel vindicated by Ramsey’s recent performance ( as you should be) for standing by him when he was struggling , or maybe it’s the built up frustration for having to defend Mr Wenger and our players in the face of constant ridicule. In any event, I believe you have too much to offer in the area of football expertise to be engaging in a small minded tit for tat. I’m sure there will be planty of posters to pick up that slack. Keep up the good work and take care!

  • jambug


    I just want to say a few words about Rambo.

    I admit that he’s made me eat my words. Over the last couple of years my wife(my footballing soul mate) and I have have been worried about him.

    Although we saw the rambo of old in flashes we was starting to wonder if he’d ever get back to where he was, let alone move up to that level we all hoped he would reach. And yes, on one of those days when things where going bad we would ‘moan’. We would say ‘He’s lost it’.

    But never did we ‘Boo’. Never did we start mouthing off on web sites about it. Never did we ever wish anything other than he ‘got it back’. But more than that we kept faith. Although our faith in Rambo himself was stretched to the limit our faith in Wenger (as always) never did. We kept saying, if Wenger can still see it, who are we to doubt?

    And yet again Wenger has proved us right not to doubt him, and more to the point how wrong rambo has proved us to of ever doubted him.

    But my main point for this admission is the way you express these doubts.

    We can’t all always agree. we can’t all always see the same as each other, but as fans, no matter what your doubts, no matter your frustrations, you should never, and I mean NEVER, ‘Boo’ or ‘Jeer’ your own. Of course grumble, moan, express your doubts to each other but to openly undermine your own players to me is not on. What good can it do?

    And as for those disgraceful enough to openly wish injury or worse, ill health, on a guy just because he’s haveing a bad time is dispicable.

    I used to be proud of our fans, alas too many have aloud the negative media bile to infiltrate them and saddly allowed themselves to be dragged into the gutter with them.

    Yes we cant all rate/like the same things but to express it in the vile, abusive way that some do is a disgrace !!!

    So come on Goons, get a grip. Support the lads through thick and thin. Remember when they are haveing a bad time is the time they need us most.

    I am, always have been, and always will be, proud of our Team/Club. I would like to get back to being proud of our fans.

    Untold is a massive step in the right direction. 800,000 seems to suggest many agree!!!

  • bjtgooner

    @Goona Gal

    Good to see you back. Also, totally agree with you about Rambo. In addition all of the young players in the team seem to progressing well & Wilshere will too, once he is fully fit and gets a run of games.

  • Goona Gal

    On the topic of Walcott, I personally don’t think he is playing well or making life easy for Jenks. I think fans should rightly demand more from him this season. I didn’t think he played particularly well during the preseason and has carried this form into this season. A couple of times I wondered what he was doing in not very useful central midfield positions. His lack of communication with Jenkinson led to big gaps opening up down the right which Sunderland exploited and to be honest I think Jenkinson is a better crosser of the ball than Walcott. I can understand the trade off, why you would want the taller defender in the box over Walcott, but corners are one of Jenks strengths.

    I wouldn’t be too alarmed if Walcott was dropped to the bench and Gnabry was given a starting spot. Gnabry just needs to find his feet in this squad and there isn’t much difference in quality right now between Walcott and him as you might think. In fact Gnabry puts in more of a defensive shift than Theo! I think we miss Alex OC as bonafide alternative outlet to Theo at the moment though.

    I was glad that Akpom came on and made his debut as he is another player I tipped for the top four years ago, the West Brom game coming up must have him dreaming.

  • Goona Gal

    @ bjtgooner – hello sir!

  • jambug

    @Goona Gal

    Sorry don’t agree.

    You’re looking to face Arsenal this weekend.

    Gnabry or Theo? Who would you rather face?

    If you don’t think every defender in the WORLD would rather theo was on the bench than up against them then you watch a different game to me.

  • Mandy Dodd

    yes, the Mark Halsey book serialization has appeared in the press today. Unfortunatley, I am told it is in The Sun – so I have not seen the article, nor can I provide a link as when it comes to thet rag, I consider myself a conscientious objector. But, I am told that amongst other things, Halsey indicates that all top refs were in regular texting contact with Fergie, one tweet suggested he would regularly contact them in the week before the Utd game they happened to be officiating. Not sure if anyone has seen The Sun and can confirm or deny this?
    If true…well, of course Fergie could just have been making social calls, enquiring about their wives, asking how the treatment was going etc. And of course, with a book to sell, maybe some of the facts have been skewed. But raises a lot of questions, and if Halsey really has said this…lets face it, very unsurprising news, surely this is a resigning matter for Riley? This would suggest he has been at best spineless in letting such compromising behaviour go on, at worst…well…
    Remember the PGMOL apparently threatened Halsey with legal action if he went too far and there were suggestions they tried to stop him doing this book
    Whether Halsey actually wrote this Fergie stuff or not, look forward to his revelations, a guy that has faced what he has should have no reason to fear the FA / PGMOL. A ref breaking ranks, could be the start of something good!

  • Sam

    Gnabry is a shade of Theo. Theo at the peak of his powers is a destructive nightmare for a defense. Gnabry might be really good…eventually, but most PL fullbacks could keep Gnabry quiet for 90 minutes.

  • jambug


    Exactly. Nothing against Gnabry or Akpom but to suggest they could fill in for Walcott and cause the same alarm is, well lets just say hopeful at best. Even a slightly ‘off colour’ Theo is a massive problem for defenders.

  • jambug

    IF and it is a MASSIVE IF fergie was in contact with refs prior to games then surely it undermines EVERYTHING they achieved?

    As it’s all speculation at this point cant say much more.

    lets see what comes to light.

    Interesting to say the least !!!


  • Matt

    Weird that when I said we were a striker short I got all sorts of the usual abuse and told we have Sanogo,Gnabry & Akpom .When some say Theo is not playing well were told Akpom and Sanogo are not ready to replace him.

  • jambug

    Hello Matt……now fuck off !!!!!!

  • Matt

    The keyboard warriors are out today

  • Mandy Dodd

    Still trying to find out if this was actually printed in the Sun Jambug, I know there was serious speculation it was to appear. I do know he goes into the mikel threatening to break Clattenbergs legs episode, it remains a mystery to me how Chelsea got off so lightly over all that, could you imagine if an Arsenal player had threatened a ref in such a way, and another had falsely accused him of racial abuse? As you say, IF Halsey has made such an allegation, the FA/PGMOL will need to make a very robust denial, if that is they actually can. There is a tendancy in this country not to rock the boat, to keep things under wraps, but ignoring / attempting to cover up major issues can comes back to bite, just ask any number of people now sweating over the way the Hillsborough investigation is going after all these years. But I agree, IF this was the case, it completely taints Fergies legacy, and does untold damage to the governance of the game. Really hope his book does not turn out to be a damp squib. We will just have to wait and see

  • jambug

    Sorry about the Matt thing it’s just he’s such a prat !!

  • Matt

    Leave it out Jammug. Maybe you should stay of the Internet if you don’t like difference in opinion and go and talk to your wife who is also your football soul mate. Pretentious hyperbole at its finest.

  • jambug

    Whatever you say Matt. your still a pratt.

  • Mandy Dodd
    It happened it seems. This is scandalous mr Riley your resignation please

  • vacong

    You are right Jambug, the media has warped the people around me, my friend is a he text me haha 3-1, I said taylor gave good assists. he text back sour grapes, I was like did you watch the match? he text boohoo stop crying! I text watch the game and then say anything you like. I said if you won and played well fair enough but that took the piss! look at their performance now!

  • vacong

    Mandy I think asslick funguson had all the refs on speed dial, Mike riley,Mike Dean,Phil dowd Howard Webb were the golden generation for man united right?

  • Goona Gal

    @ Jambug – If it weren’t Stoke, but a team like Norwich or West Ham, I would say I would rather play Gnabry actually. As Gnabry’s strengths, weaknesses and all round game isn’t known in the way that Theo’s is. How much of Gnabry have you actually seen to know if defenders could keep him quiet for 90 mins? Theo isn’t at his best and Gnabry is playing very well at the moment.

    I wonder how you took my stating how pleased I was that Akpom made his Premier League debut to mean that he was a direct replacement for Theo??? Strange.

    And to be honest I probably DO watch a different game to you, hence my staunch unwavering support for Ramsey.

  • Marcus

    I wonder if Halsey and Alex were on mates’ rates? I suppose the ‘we dont do corruption we’re English’ contingent may have been right all along. We just do the old boys’ network, the golf club, the freemasons, and other forms of partiality….

  • Goona Gal

    A silver lining to the injury crisis cloud which I observed against Sunderland, was that opposition players struggled in the first 30 mins to work out how our players were lined up and their positions. Arsene Wenger’s subscription to ‘total football’ otherwise known as Wengerball has been a major reason for us being able to absorb the injuries in the squad thus far. Managers who study our previous games and do their tactics accordingly must be a little stumped right now. Our players playing in different positions creates problems and forced an early substitution by Sunderland for example.

    If we had more fit players at our disposal, I can imagine AW playing one way and then as soon as the opposition settle, bringing on different players and switching things up to throw their game off again. Tactics. Wengerball.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Prob right vacong lets face it nothing we have not suspected all along but this is pretty major a retired ref confirming our suspicions. Agree on the old boys network but it now seems out in the open. Have a feeling this will now be attempted to be swept under the carpet minimum fuss but there are huge legal and financial implications if our game in this country is seeing as not quite right sponsorship for starters. Refs have to be whiter than white and be seen as being so this is extremely damaging.

  • Jig

    If Refs privet life as Fergie’s whore comes out it will not only end Fergie’s legacy and rep but also whole of PL. It will all come out soon hopefully. German league will become the main league people around the world start watching due this. BTW it’s not like we didn’t know that this was happening. It will also bring out other stuff onto the surface too like Medias, Newspaper and BBCs love towards Man U and being bias towards some other clubs such as ARSENAL. I hope it comes out so we can have proper Refs, media and MOtD.

  • ARSENAL 13

    Akpoms debut, well ahead of when I thought he would…….I would love to see him play this wednesday. Is he in the CL squad??

    On Ramsey, Did some one compare him to Lampard??….Well Ramseys overall contribution to the team is much more than Lampard could ever think of.

    On Theo, Lean patch. Theo is going to be our top scorer again. Signs are all there.

  • The font

    Theo should be in the starting 11 he brings fear factor yes if he stays fit he will get. 20 goals but
    Higuine Suarez tevez. Benzema Henry aguero would have stuck one of those chances away if he wants to play week in week out and not just tactical games . He needs to improve his finishing
    Arsenal are on the up and new players will be bought gnarby is a fantastic player. And will become a regular when wenger thinks the time is right

  • Please lay off Theo people. He will come good. He is getting into good position and he will start putting them in soon. Also, this is not his first dry patch. He has always come good.

    Commenters can’t write about how they used to lack faith in Ramsey and then follow such mea culpa with criticisms of another player who is not delivering at the moment. No one remembers Podolski’s first at Craven Cottage but he put in the rebound because of a shot by Walcott. Walcott was also brought down when through to enable Giroud score his only goal of the CL from the spot.

    Theo is playing well he is just not scoring. I believe that as long as he keeps getting into good positions, the goals will definitely come. Besides, I don’t think anyone is pained or more disappointed than the player on his missed chances.

    Please leave Walcott alone.

  • marcus

    Theo scored 21 goals last season, and 16 the season before. He is now 24 years old.

    Who would be an interesting comparison?

    Ryan Giggs is reckoned to be the best British winger of the last 20 years I guess. At Theo’s age he was scoring 9 to 10 goals a season. And he was 12 years into his professional career before he bagged 16 in a season…

  • para

    I think ref should have given a yellow card each and a drop ball to restart game. Simple.

  • The font

    Well said

  • Sammy The Snake

    Theo will come good soon enough. Give him time.

  • sukebe

    Hey, Matt..

    Keyboard warriors, huh?

    So EVERYBODY have to agree with YOUR OPINION, mixing it with trolls over family again?

    I bet Jambug’s wife is one lovely lady, as it shows through Jambug’s word.

    Talking about keyboard warriors, huh?

    Matt, please go get a life, i bet there are lots of fine lady to give you comfort out there.

  • Goona Gal

    I’ve got to say that I am disappointed that Untold is not considered a safe enough space to discuss the good, the bad and the ugly stuff of AFC in a reasonable way.

    I am not questioning Theo’s ability full stop. But saying I expect more from him. From the sounds of it from AW, on Wednesday will be a massive game for him and us. Though I am hoping to hear some good news on the injury front.

  • Va Cong

    @mandy a bit of daz detergent refs are brighter than white ! @ bootomee Theo’s timing is right for runs anyone who plays football knows wants the tempo is back those on target shots will go in. There is a fine line.