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Divided we fall: the view from Arsenal in India

Divided we fall.


1857. We Indians feel proud when we hear that. The world knows it as the Sepoy Mutiny. Or the rebellion of 1857. But we Indians call it as the first of Independence. This brought an end to the rule of East India Company and the power was handed over to the Queen.

That was some history lesson for a change. After all this is Untold. This week is getting more and more interesting. First we lose at the Britannia, the land of the Neanderthals. Stoke can’t beat us fair. So they use the tried and tested ‘up them’ method. Kick Giroud, Kick Wilshere, kick Steve Bould, Kick Gunnersaurus.

And then a miracle. A blind man running around in the pitch for over an hour regains his vision. And now a revelation. A revelation that ARSENAL did trigger the release clause in Suarez’s contract. The timing of this is ………, well, Mr Henry is either a genius or dumbest dumb..

ARSENAL has one of the biggest fan following in social media. A big pool of opinions, for the main stream media, to latch on to. And media are happy to serve the loudest ones. Last season we had a section of fans who wanted to wear a black scarf and then march outside the stadium while at it. We have fans in the stadium booing the players. We have fans in the social media crying for the head of Mr Wenger, the board, the non-playing staff, playing staff and the tea lady……….

This infuriates me. We all are right to be annoyed (for different reasons). But our focus is all wrongly directed. Last month we played Liverpool at Anfield. The support was awesome. The crowd intimidates the officials. The last game at Stoke, penalty. Was the ref in the right area to judge the contact? I don’t think so. Koscielny’s hands were in natural position.  The crowd played its part in winning the penalty.

All ARSENAL fans are doing is to blame the players and the management. We blame our players for being scared of 50-50 tackles. our players are scared of physical games. Are we? I don’t think so. We are brave enough to go into tackles.

Ramsey leads the league in tackles per game, that from a player whose playing career was almost ended by a careless tackle. Take that for not being brave. But in the games where referee turns a blind eye, players do stand back. I don’t blame them after what happened to Eduardo, Ramsey, Sagna and Diaby. Sometimes it is better to stand back and live to fight another day.

Mr Wenger is blamed for all that is wrong with the league. Why? What has Mr Wenger got to do with questionable refereeing? Post-game presser at Stoke, Mr Wenger said “I’ve nothing to say about that. I’m long enough in the game to make my own judgement and I prefer to concentrate on our own performance.” when asked about tackles on Giroud. The message is clear. But the media is not interested in that. What has Mr Wenger got to do with inflated wages, inflated transfer fees and scandalous agencies? Perhaps, Mr Wenger and ARSENAL are blamed for being sane in the insane world of football. Galileo was too.

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The rebellion of 1857 was suppressed by the British. But what helped their cause? India as we see it now is all the work of our colonial masters. Pre-colonial India was a collection of princely states, some independent, some affiliated and other ruled by the British. The rebellion was restricted to small pockets of uprisings, than a full-fledged war on the company. And the princely states helped the British by providing them with manpower to suppress the rebellion.

ARSENAL world looks like pre-colonial India now. We are divided. Our players are not third grade citizens. No individual in a civilised society should be allowed to be treated like one. Let’s stand for a level playing field. Let’s stand for fair and unbiased officiating. Let’s stand for football. Let’s stand for ARSENAL.



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The mutiny of 1857 though suppressed, did not fail to connect. The seeds of the idea of an independent India were laid. It took a century, almost, to bear fruit. And the mutineers, well, they fought their way into the folklore.



11 comments to Divided we fall: the view from Arsenal in India

  • finsbury

    Brilliant article.

    There’s a direct line connecting the historical dots between the Boston Tea Party, The ‘Mutiny’ and the Salt March.

    Victory through harmony.

  • Sav from Australia

    Interesting article and a valid point. The media have succeeded in destabilising the fan base. Yet I would say this is less divide and conqueras much as supporters who hold media narratives as aaccurate, amongst whom most probably do not engage on Twitter like crazy people; and supporters who see through media narratives and look at AFC for what it is, not what it is described as.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Great article. The fanbase is certainly divided, some suffering from lack of trophy meltdown. But then again, the fanbase has always been divided.

  • Micheal Ram

    My grandfather was from the pre-colonial India too. Since I was his favourite grandchild, I always hear how he and his friends enrolled into the army to fight the evil and corrupt state governors and their cronies. About how the country meant to them and their willingness to sacrifice their lives for Mother India. Today, India is the world’s most populated democratic country and the highest economic growth. Their liberal system is unparalleled, not even the USA. There is a about a billion cows in India. Huge pool of individual talents and contributed significantly to the whole world. The people has successfully defended themselves from constant hassle and threats from neighbouring countries for so long. Supplied tens of thousands of talents and workforce to Qatar to make their World Cup work and lost hundreds of them to scums.

    Any similarity?

  • Brickfields Gunners

    Very nice article ,thanks. Do agree to the call that the Arsenal fans support their team and manager to the hilt.
    No wavering , no complaining till the final whistle of the season is blown .
    Up the Gunners !

  • ARSENAL 13

    ARSENAL are the mutineers in the world of football. We are fighting the insane world of football finance/management. No matter what happens now, our efforts will be recognized in the future.

    And blogs like Untold are the mutineers in the world of football support and ‘not the mainstream’ media. Though we are constantly under attack for supporting the team/management now, our efforts to stabilize too will be recognized.

    All I am hoping for is support. Support for the team. This is the final frontier (for this season ie). Why provide the manpower to the oppressors? Why not support the mutineers……

    Victoria Concordia Crescit.

  • Brickfields Gunners

    I may have posted this before ,but still a good watch .

    Bus 44 – Award-Winning Short Film – YouTube

  • Brickfields Gunners

    Getting your priorities right .

    A philosophy professor stood before his class with some items on the table in front of him. When the class began, wordlessly he picked up a very large and empty mayonnaise jar and proceeded to fill it with rocks, about 2 inches in diameter.
    He then asked the students if the jar was full. They agreed that it was.
    So the professor then picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the jar. He shook the jar lightly. The pebbles, of course, rolled into the open areas between the rocks.
    He then asked the students again if the jar was full. They agreed it was.
    The professor picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar. Of course, the sand filled up everything else.
    He then asked once more if the jar was full. The students responded with a unanimous “Yes.”
    “Now,” said the professor, “I want you to recognize that this jar represents your life. The rocks are the important things – your family, your partner, your health, your children – things that if everything else was lost and only they remained, your life would still be full.
    The pebbles are the other things that matter – like your job, your house, your car.
    The sand is everything else. The small stuff.”
    “If you put the sand into the jar first,” he continued “there is no room for the pebbles or the rocks. The same goes for your life.
    If you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff, you will never have room for the things that are important to you. Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness. Play with your children. Take your partner out dancing. There will always be time to go to work, clean the house, give a dinner party and fix the disposal.
    Take care of the rocks first – the things that really matter. Set your priorities. The rest is just sand.”

  • nicky

    India fully deserved her independence in 1947 but at a cost of many lives due to a religious divide which in part still exists today.
    I still recall the dangerous and naive view, held by many Indians during WW2, that the Japanese would be welcomed as liberators rather than conquerors.
    The freedom enjoyed in the sub-continent today is in no small part due to the bravery and steadfastness of the Indian and British military in defeating a cruel foe.
    And India’s proud claim to be the world’s largest democracies owes much to the background of British involvement over many centuries…..not always appreciated at the time.

  • ARSENAL 13


    The religious divide that had filled up after the 1857 was split open just before the independence. Political ambitions of two powerful men in the congress had big role to play in that. And political groups those who call themselves secular still use it to garner votes.

    As I said India as we see today is all thanks to the British rule. They gave us the geographical unity, geographical boundry that did not exist before. British gave us the political setup. British gave us the infrastructure. Roads, railways, electricity………… And the most important thing, British opened us to the modern education system. Yes they oppressed us, but why not look at the positives…..

  • nicky

    @Arsenal 13,
    Yeah, a fair summing up of history.
    If only the two main religions could get along better….