Beşiktaş JK preview: the media’s universal desire to moan and the issue of accents

By Bulldog Drummond

Success and achievement are boring – at least if you are a journalist.  If you have to write about success then personalise it, and make the person you write about be eccentric, self-centred, opinionated and if possible abusive.

But most of all follow failure – especially if it involves someone who is French (too emotional by half) or German (dubiously authoritarian, far too organised for their own – and Britain’s – good).

So Arsène Wenger stands before us accused of a ludicrous faith in youth (so forget everyone from the Boy Bastin to Cesc Fabregas via Tony Adams) and a complete lack of foresight.  Calum Chambers at centre back?  Typical French disorganisation from a man who glories in the unnecessary use of an accent in his first name.

And thus we move on to suggestions that Calum Chambers won’t be able to handle the pressure because he has never had to play in Turkey before.

And if Mr Wenger didn’t play Chambers because he is “too young for such pressure” he’d be accused of bottling it – like all the French do.

And again what is wrong with Arsenal’s Germans?  Chelsea can play their German so why not Arsenal?  (Actually Mr Wenger answered that a couple of days ago, saying you have the choice – bring them back later and have them all season, or bring them back early and lose them in November.  But that’s a bit academic.  A bit theoretical.  A bit… French.)

The truth is Arsène Wenger does risks, big time.  Remember the way he came out and said that Arsenal would go all season unbeaten? (20 September 2002 in case you are interested – we lost one month later and everyone laughed).

Or remember the moment he signed as Arsenal’s manager, and on 1 October 1996 the press gathered at the steps of Highbury demanding that he talk about the wild, outrageous, libellous accusations made about his time in Japan.  Against all advice from within the club Mr Wenger went out, faced the hacks down and shut them up.

Or playing Chris Wreh in the Cup Final?  Wasn’t that a gamble?

Arsène Wenger takes risks – and knows how to handle the fall out.  He also shows faith in young players, like Hector Bellerin who will be covering the right-back position.  But “oooooh”, shout the demented loonies of the press corps sounding rather like people who have been in the House of Commons at Question Time and taken the result as a lesson in etiquette and manners, Bellerin, Chambers… how many European games have they played?  

And so they forget that everyone has to start sometime.  Otherwise no one would have played a game.

So it all comes out.  Forget that Giroud over his first two seasons did as well as Henry.  Forget that the press laughed at Henry’s incompetence and doubted Bergkamp’s ability when they first tipped up for Arsenal.  Forget every failure of the press to predict anything or come to that report anything.  Arsène complete with accent is foreign, and worse he is French foreign, and worse its French foreign from near the German border.  Say no more.

Even the disruption to the flight plan was Mr Wenger’s fault.  As the Telegraph says, “In truth landing in the correct continent is generally advisable.”  Stupid Wenger.  Probably put the wrong team on the wrong plane going to the wrong match on the wrong planet in the wrong galaxy…[I think we get the picture – Tony]

Beşiktaş (with two accents so that makes them doubly foreign and thus even more suspicious than Arsène) used to play in the BJK Inonu Stadyumu in the Beşiktaş region of Istanbul, but that is being rebuilt at the moment.  When it is finished it will have the very Turkish name of the Vodafone Arena. 

So instead the game is being held in İkitelli, which is something like 90 minutes by bus from the centre of the city.   The stadium is the Atatürk Olympic Stadium and is named after the founder and first president of the Republic of Turkey, but not named for having been an Olympic venue.  This is because it was constructed in readiness of Turkey to win the hosting of the 2008 Oly games, but they didn’t.  Still I have sure it was $140,000,000 well spent.  Galatasary played here in 2003/4 much to the annoyance of other clubs in the SuperLeague.  Sivasspor has played here was well, and Istanbul BB play at the ground permanently.

Beşiktaş are managed by Slaven Bilic once of WHU.  They have Oguzhan Ozyakup in their squad, once of Arsenal, plus Demba Ba of whom it has been said, and 15 million fans in Turkey.  It is the first time we’ve played them.  Ever.

They finished third in the Turkish SuperLeague last season, 12 points behind Fenerbache.

And so to the game.

Basically if you like a good knock-down-and-drag-out yarn with excitement and violence every other second, then playing against Johnny Foreigner should be right up your street.  [Steady on Bulldog – Tony]

In this match there should be a home team willing to attack, attack, attack, and thus Sánchez and Cazorla will get more space, and Ramsey every chance to run.  And we know that Giroud will play (Sanogo didn’t get on the plane – probably Wenger’s fault for sending him to the wrong airport).

Koscielny (who has no accent but wants his own song) is fit so Mertesacker stays in London, probably to keep Sanogo company.  Mathieu Flamini, who has recovered from illness should start or be a sub – I think the former.  Kieran Gibbs has a hamstring problem, and is out for three weeks, Abou Diaby has travelled and really deserves to get some match time soon.

But sorry Abou I don’t think you are down to start the game, for the team thus might well be something approximating to….


Debuchy, Chambers, Koscielny Monreal;

Arteta, Flamini

Sanchez, Ramsey, Cazolra


Some of these could be on the bench: Diaby, Rosicky, Bellerin, Miquel, Wilshere, Martinez, Campbell, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Coquelin

I predict the battle of Agincourt re-enacted with the result being 2-0 to the Arsenal.

[Agincourt???? –  what, as in we take prisoners and then cut their heads off?Tony]

[Whatever it takes to win as long as it is part of the British way of doing things – Bulldog]

Recent posts

56 Replies to “Beşiktaş JK preview: the media’s universal desire to moan and the issue of accents”

  1. Another enjoyable written piece today,many thanks Mr.B.Drummond! Good luck to the Arsenal!
    COYG! Aha and Amen!

  2. @ Bulldog,
    An interesting and amusing post of the type which Doc McGraw would be proud.
    You must be a firm supporter of those hardy souls who, many years ago, constructed the English Channel.

  3. Fog in the channel – Europe cut off.

    Fog in journos brains – no change there then.

  4. Yep you are getting the hang of Bulldog!

    Here we go – no Diaby again

    Debuchy Koscielny Monreal Chambers
    Wilshere Arteta1 Ramsey
    Sanchez Cazorla

    Oxlade Chamberlain

  5. Well done WS1 – saving that shot on 5 seconds. Neither commentator recognised it as a great save, following a great striker from Ba.

    Precious little talk about the abominable pitch and its effect on controlling passes. Plenty of talk about Arsenal being bad at the weekend.

    They saw a different game to me.

    I love the way there’s nothing but implied criticism of anything Arsenal try to do, whilst at the same time there’s no tutting about Bes’s play.

    Perhaps Ox will come on at some stage. Bes looked tired toward the end of the 1st half.

    Come on Arsenal.

  6. Yeah, this ref is poor. Mota took an air shot, Ramsey was in and he blew for a free kick! Giroud and Monreal fouled but free kicks went the other way. Comical

  7. Proud of this team, play football the way it should Be; no time wasting or feigning injury even when down to 10 men. Well done.

    I am not sure if this ref is bent, just thought his decision making is very poor. Baffling at times.

  8. Some strange refereeing , from a ref with history, he was demoted at the WC. Ramsey ….ok letter of the law if they say so, let’s see how many people get sent off for such things against us this season.
    Not a bad result in a tricky fixture, a hostile atmosphere…..and a strange ref. they will park the bus on the return hoping for the best, but by then, injuries permitting…..think we will be sharper and have sufficient firepower. Hope arteta ok. Apart from a single mistake, chambers was excellent, especially against a ref who was clearly going to card us at any possible opportunity. This is a job we can finish

  9. The ref was ok until that foul on sanchez which he gave a yellow to the Besiktaz player. And then their coach yelled at the ref which changed everything. That was unacceptable by any standard. Ghost fouls, free yellows, fouls on Arsenal becomes on Arsenal. I was afraid he was going to take the ball and score it for Besiktas later. WTF?

  10. Al, seconded.

    I believe he wasnt bent, but like he was threatened from the Besiktas coach Bilis. I just wish to know what he was telling him, to out of a sudden become like this.

  11. Crap place to play football. The crowd are so far away from the pitch that they can have no effect at all. Usually Turkish teams supporters attempt to intimidate us, but no way at that place.

  12. Terrible pitch as well. Mark my words, we will be fine at home, we need to be sharper, but that will come back… will several players.

  13. Garbage performance yet again by Arsenal.Still we didn’t need cesc back,no siree.Because we’ve got Santi,Wilshere and Arteta.all of whom are utter pants.Whats the point of buying players like Ozil and sanchez if we have no decent strikers?Pointless vanity signings that do nothing to address the problems in the squad.WE NEED A GOOD STRKER AND HOLDING MIDFIELDER.Still.After all these years.Remember that not qualifying for the CL will cost the club £30 mill,which means NO MORE SIGNINGS and probably the sale of some fan favs like Poldolski and Cazorla.Remember that when you slag me off.

  14. A tough match in a very partisan and intimidating atmosphere. The team did well to keep their composure despite the combination of fouling and strange refereeing – from a ref with a history.

    Yassin – you are right the Besiktaz coach seemed to remind the ref about something after the booking for that foul on Sanchez – not sure if it was a camel’s head or a brown envelope.

  15. We lost our best 3 players today, Arteta to injury, Ramsey to red card, and Suarez to sub (due to fitness maybe, he was the best today). Giroud and Santi still need to get back mentally more than physically, when that is ready, we will be ok. Its just how lost we looked without Mikel, still some wants a MONSTER DEFENSIVE MIDFIELDER. Get a life.

    @Btjgooner, yes dont know, but I sensed it like a threatining pr something. Instead of the ref giving instruction to Bilis, it was the other way round. We were starting to get better, and they started to get tired. At that moment everything changed. And the Arteta injury was due to a foul, which then resulted in a goal threatining by Besiktas.

  16. Bilic is Croatian and the Ref is Serbian. Apart from all the recent history, they do share a common language.


  17. Indeed Yassin – the foul and injury on Arteta by Denba Ba was not called by the ref. Lets hope Arteta is OK.

  18. Worry about that when we don’t qualify Linz. Anyway, don’t your ilk always tell us we have anywhere between 140 and 200 million in the bank, so why such claims?

  19. @All,
    Once I was told by “Al” a line that goes like this:
    Dont feed the trolls.
    Just forget about them, dont you know? They dont exist!
    Just ignore and dont let them change the main discussion to annoyance.

  20. Please I have been asking this question to the very optimistic fansWhat has Arsenal done this season to prevent another 6-0 trashing by Chelsea?Meanwhile,Chelsea now has Fabrepass to make it 8-0Giroud is no answer to Arsenal’s scoring woesWhy is No one on Arsenal board seeing this ?We have not really brought anyone in reinforcements this season, apart from Sanchez. we just replaced equally good players we had.Tell me one good reason why this won’t be the worst Arsenal season in 9 years!?

  21. Chambo millimeters away from killing the tie.

    As Rantetta said the foul on Arteta was right in front of the ref. Did he also miss a shove to face/throat on Ramsey? I didn’t see it properly.

    AW: “A difficult game played at a frenetic pace throughout. We could have won it but they had chances as well. In the end we didn’t lose and hopefully we will make it at home.
    Both yellow cards for Aaron Ramsey are unbelievable When you see the fouls they have made today it’s not serious. Just not serious.”

    That covers it!

  22. Pete
    The UEFA refs association [or whatever they call it] should have spotted a potential conflict there.

  23. 1st – our team was decidedly average
    2nd – the referee was decidedly average…a bit extreme to call him bent but some of his decisions late on were curious…as for language similarities between the Besiktas manager and the referee – a non-starter IMO.

    If we fix our performance we shall be OK.

  24. Yassin
    Glad you remember 🙂 Never feed them, or they won’t go away. You guys are right, that exchange between bilic and the ref was strange, it seemed the ref walked over to get a rollicking from bilic! Even the commentators pointed it out. Incidentally things changed for the worse for us from then onwards.

    Both yellows for Ramsey were the softest I’ve seen for a while. flamini’s as well. Anyway, we should be ok at the Ems. Unless they bring the same ref again. Goodnight fellow gunners.

  25. As soon as Monreal was tackled American Football style and it was given AGAINST him around the 67th minute I knew we would be lucky to get out with 0-0. My son plays on better pitches than that and he’s 12. I would say shocking but then again not really.

  26. Cazorla,wilshere,ramsey,giroud(looks lazy and unserious) were below par,defence did well,arteta ok,sanchez okay too.y rosicky nd campbell not in d starting 11.wenger knows best.d players need to buckle up

  27. Never fear, another Rhys Jagger is here. And such folk aren’t Arsenal supporters.

    As many have pointed out: watch the FA Cup final in full – in order to see the template by which Arsenal are officiated.

    What’s hilarious is that it’s the same people who’re unable to comprehend the purpose of, and articles written on Untold, who’d be the 1st to bleat about Wenger’s myopia, failing to realise that they can’t even see what happens in an Arsenal match, even with replays.

    Some people question others’ hatred of the media, which proves to me that the “some” are dumb, in that they can’t see the wood or the trees!

    Or summat.

    Thanks Al, Fins and Jambug, and others who bother to call out the non-tree-woods.

  28. Boy have we got a fight this season.
    They have not stopped attacking Arsenal, but remember the victory will be that much sweeter.

    Only thing we can do, that is, Untold and any others, is to make it known across the web, and keep on highlighting the wrong decisions.

  29. Pulling players back in Europe is a yellow card.Typical whinging Untolders. It was the ref/the pitch/uefa/fifa/Fergie/financial doping * delete as appropriate.It is never ever the fault of Wengers non existent in game management or the bang average players.Will be hilarious seeing Sanchez and Ozil in the Europa League.Bet you won’t be “bantering”with Liverpool fans then.

  30. The pitch was shocking but both teams had to play on it.

    I thought the ref was strange, nothing in the first half and then card happy. Even stranger was he books both players for things he let other players get away with, seemed no rhyme of reason to what he thought a foul.

    Someone needs to remind Sanchez he has team mates, he never seems to pass.

  31. Re the yellow cards: Jack was pulled in the same way towards the end of the match and surprise surprise, no yellow.

    Go away trolls. You’re not welcome here.

  32. Joe – very simple answer. We have bought two new defenders of high quality, and have added the pace of Alexis up front. Alexis combined with Theo when he returns will change the way other clubs defend against us, because they will take account of the additional pace and power and we have new options in defence.

    Seems fairly obvious to me.

  33. Tony, do you not think that with the added pace, teams will defend it deeper and more tightly packed?

  34. @Will,
    Based on the mentioning by you that the pitch was shoking, and when you look how good were Besiktas were cutting our passing, still not that good in one on ones, I do think Sanchez realized dribbling was better than passing, and that was where dangerous attacks came from, either sanchez, wilshere, ramsey or chamberlain dribbling.
    In other games in Crystal palace one and pre season, he did not seem to dribble that much.

  35. @Yassin, we lost Suarez to Barca though I don’t think we ever had him to begin with. Sanchez on the other hand is a very good alternative. 🙂

  36. @ Chapman Ghost,

    Hahaha, my mistake. Definitly Sanchez not Suarez. Sorry about that.

  37. Linz: man it is so obvious you don’t support Arsenal, so what you’re saying is fine with me, that’s what other supporters do. I reckon spuds or Liverpool is your team of choice, if it is not and u support Arsenal then you must have an unhappy life, my heart goes out to you it really does…
    We are still finding our feet in the new season, ze Germans are back now, we will be a littke late getting going, but if we can get the points on the board in the meantime then we should be sitting pretty after couple of months when we should be firing on all cylinders.
    I prefer us to start slowly and finish strongly!
    COYG 2 for 2 so far!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *