An enjoyable afternoon in an old cowshed

By Walter Broeckx

As you will now by now I am chairman of the Arsenal Belgium supporters club. And as with any other official supporters club we have to hold regular board meetings. Check the finances, look at where we can improve and on where we are doing a good job.

Now I must say that when our current board took over from the former board we hoped to get some 40 – 50 members. Paying members that is. People who are willing to pay a membership fee in order to be a member and to be able to get to Arsenal matches. And we do have some competition from a not-official supporters club who don’t charge fees and who work on red memberships owners. But in our meeting today the count was 93 members. So more than the double we hoped for and we are slowly thinking on how to celebrate our 100th member.

Today was our second board meeting of this season and it was held in the Flemish Ardennes in a pub called De Oude Koeiestal or the Old Cowshed in English. Where we first had our board meeting and finished that just in time to see the match on the big screen that was installed for us.

The board meeting went fine and the future of our supporters club looks fine and bright. But what followed was even better.

The first thing I want to point at was the magnificent block from Szczesny on a point blank header. What an important and crucial save that was! I think we will see Ospina in goal next Tuesday but he sure has a big task and has to really impress if he wants to play Szczesny out of the goal. What I have seen from Ospina in clips and in the world cup looks promising also so I really do think that we have two excellent keepers  in our squad.

Villa played their usual strong defensive style of play.  The went forward and almost scored on one occasion but they were more concentrated on stopping us from playing.  Not by really unfair means for most of the time but they tried to organise themselves defensively and then tried to hit us on the counter. But our boys didn’t want any of that. And as our match previewer pointed out before the match Villa isn’t a team that is going forward a lot. Waiting in defence and then hoping for that lucky break.

So we had to be a bit patient at first and work hard to get to some openings. Ramsey had a few decent shots that just went wide. Cazorla was dribbling all over the place. And a seemingly disinterested bloke strolled on the pitch playing the ball left, right and centre. He reminded me of a player that got called all sorts of names over recent days and I was told he was a flop, useless, nicking a living. But that must have been another player as this one was doing a rather nice job.

First he got a lovely ball from Welbeck and he finished it off over rather cooly under the keeper. He sure had a big happy smile on his face when he was surrounded by the other Arsenal players to celebrate our first goal. As I was sitting on a high barstool to see the match I jumped up in celebration and I almost pulled down the lights in the Old Cowshed. The son of the owner (one of our board members) came out to fix the damage.   [I do hope you have not been banned from board meetings for rowdy behaviour Walter.  I’ve warned you of this before.  Tony]

He had just done that and we scored our second goal. This time Özil got the ball on the left flank and his low cross was nicely finished off by Danny Welbeck. Assist maker becoming goal scorer and goal scorer becoming assist maker. Nice work from both of them on both occasions.  And I didn’t pull down the lights this time when I celebrated the goal.

Aston Villa was on the ropes and we smelled blood. And in our next attack we scored again. This time Gibbs had a low cross and a Villa player put the ball into his own net. 0-3 and again I managed to not destroy the lights in the Old Cowshed.

Ramsey could have scored a 4th goal just before half time but I don’t really like going in 0-4 ahead so was happy with the score as it was.

The second half was one that was not really necessary any more. Aston Villa feared a rout and pretended they were hanging on to a 0-0. And Arsenal who knew the real score new that if we didn’t do anything completely silly the match was very well won.  After a hard match on Tuesday and another match in front of us next Tuesday no need to risk anything.

Talking about risking anything…. what was that idiot Clark thinking he was doing when he came in like a lunatic on Özil deep in the second half. The ref gave him only a yellow card but that was a reckless and dangerous challenge that should have resulted in a red card. And that in a match that was already well over. But luckily no real damage was done but the ref should have made sure that there is no room for such tackles in the PL any more. But more on that in our referee review of course.

So it remained as it was at half time. 45 minutes of practising in keeping the ball for Arsenal. A good session and because of Villa playing as they did it was a long 45 minutes for the Aston Villa fans. And the away Gooners enjoying their afternoon and making themselves noticed with their songs.

Wilshere, Podolski and Rosicky came on towards the end but nothing changed any more. A good win, 3 points in the bag. Özil and Welbeck scoring their first goal of the season.

It was a lovely afternoon in the Old Cowshed. Which actually is an old cow shed. A really great afternoon. More of this please.


There is an index to recent posts, a guide to today’s anniversaries, and details of our other sites on the Untold Arsenal home page




72 Replies to “An enjoyable afternoon in an old cowshed”

  1. The AAA miseries got their way in this match and Özil was played in his favoured position in the middle not (to use Arsene’s* latest word) on the flanks.

    They also attacked Arsene unmercifully when he played Ramsey out of position on the flanks.

    As been mentioned in previous blogs we have at least 10 players whose favourite position is in the middle.

    Arsene has said that the busiest area of the pitch is the middle stream out on the flanks its not quite so busy. So when a midfielder is coming back from injury he plays a few games out on the flanks to give him time to adjust and get back on his feet at game level. Özil was clearly not ready to play centre field now he is as we saw yesterday.

    How it is that Özil plays successfully on he flanks for Germany and did for Real but seemingly not for us I don’t know. But I do know that a player of the quality of Özil may have an off game and like every other player have set backs but it doesn’t stop them being a great player.

    Its easy to cheer a player when he his having a great game, the whole world (except the serial moaners) joins in the appluse. The true supporter, supports the player when he his having a bad time. He doesn’t need us to tell him he’s having a bad game he needs us to show our confidence in him to turn it round.

    *I’ve noted that as Arsene’s English developes so he latches on to what we might call an ‘in word’. The latest is ‘flanks’.

  2. Walter i think the clark challenge was on podolski, if i’m not mistaken. Towards the end after the subs i truly enjoyed the one touch passing moves, and would like to see more of that. The past few games our passing hasnt been clicking much, but after the lads played more together, we can expect another goal of the season

  3. Now that the fast has settled and the head cleared (too much to drink), I would say that Villas plan of snatching a goal early on and then doing what they did all of second half, came undone by those special few minutes (for us) in the 31st through to 34 odd minutes!!

    Had the Villans got that early goal (which they very nearly did had our Szczesny not been awake to the danger) we would have had a fight on our hands to break them down and in danger of them getting maybe another on the break.

    That DIDNT happen and we held the ball in super fashion, putting together some sleek passes giving us 71% possession!!

    So much for – we have a manager who has no tactical awareness!!!! They played to a plan sat before them and came away with 3 super points!! On to the next PL game (agains the Spuds)!!

    Loved our mature approach to the game!!!

  4. Malaysian Gooner,
    You are correct. This is what happens when you spend your afternoon in an old cowshed and as a result have to start typing too late at night. 😉 It was indeed Podolski who almost got his ankle amputated by that fool.

  5. I now want to see all those who didn’t start yesterday play on Tuesday, just to get into the groove of derby day. Campbel, Diaby to start?

  6. I have a very soft spot for Cowsheds !

    My favorite ski resort is Ischgl, Austria. And in Ischgl, my eternal favorite apre-ski partying venue is Kuhstall!!! It’s a crazy place, even has a huge cow-bell that rings when the party is high on (and an underground kebab shop in the basement).

    It’s epic.

  7. Walter,
    I’m interested to know how come you in Belgium were able to watch the Villa game live on TV, while we in the British Isles could not.
    Should we consider moving to Belgium, join the ABSC and seek naturalisation?
    We could then watch ALL the Arsenal matches while eating your great chips, washed down with your marvellous beer.
    My wife says she would move for your chocolate alone… 😉

  8. Walter wrote:

    “The second half was one that was not really necessary any more. Aston Villa feared a rout and pretended they were hanging on to a 0-0. And Arsenal who knew the real score new that if we didn’t do anything completely silly the match was very well won. After a hard match on Tuesday and another match in front of us next Tuesday no need to risk anything.”

    Or to put it differently: a very mature and highly professional performance. In years past, we would have surged forward for more goals and concede as a result thereby giving our opponent belief and causing panic within our own ranks. The game was over in the 37th minute. Aston Villa were doing damage limitation by sitting deep and not being too adventurous lest they concede more.

    You are absolutely right; for a team that just played abroad a few days earlier, all we had to do was just keep our defence tight and run out the minutes, a wish that our hosts also shared.

  9. @ Nicky

    If you wish to watch live games, not broadcast in UK (ie 3pm Sat KO) try First Row sport site.

    I watched the Villa game live on this site yesterday.

    To get the picture just look for the very small ‘X’ and deete.

  10. @bob mac,
    Much obliged for the info.
    I wonder if Tuesday’s Capital game v Southampton will be on First Row…

  11. Walter – sounds like you were the bull in the cowshed! 🙂

    I am glad you and your colleagues had an enjoyable day. After a slightly feisty start from Villa it became a very enjoyable match to watch and what a devastating three minutes! After the goals the match was not really in doubt and the fight largely left Villa.

    There were some good performances throughout the team, but Ozil seemed to be enjoying his football again – always a good sign & how encouraging to have Welbeck on the score sheet.

    Will we see Campbell on Tuesday?

  12. As pointed out already, Clark went through on Podolski. Poldi’s reaction? To get up and give Clark a fist bump. He can take punishment can POldi.

    I think Ozil got a similar, but less violent, tackle from behind from Hutton earlier. But not sure. I was too dazzled by our fluid attack.

    Which makes me want to say that this argument of Ozil only played well because Wenger played him through the middle, is incorrect. I don’t think I could say who played where. It was total football.

  13. Yassin
    Ozil assist for the second goal was from the left wing, not because that’s where Ozil thrives but because that’s where space was to exploit the Villains. That’s Ozil biggest strenght – finding and taking advantage of out of position defenses.

    It’s different when he has to track back and cover opposition’s right back for 90 minutes, for which Ozil has no legs nor appetite.

    To be given freedom to roam as he did at Real and to find himself occasionally on the left wing, which suits his left footed surgical like passes, is not the same to being deployed there with concrete defensive assignments.

    I think we are starting to see what a prolific partnership Ozil / Welbeck duo could become.
    Upon the news of Welbeck signing, somebody smart said ‘the happiest Arsenal player ( because of Welbeck signing) will be Ozil……’ , oh wait that was only me 🙂

  14. I don’t know if Ozil’s great performance is 100% attributable to him playing through the middle. I remember a few games last season where he did not start on the middle, and played very well.

    Having said that, the vast majority of last season, he DID play in the middle (even remember a few matches where Jack played right wing in order to accomodate Ozil in the middle). In any event, we did not play 4-1-4-1, which seems to be Wenger’s favorite formation (up until yesterday) – and which excludes Ozil from the middle.

    I do agree with Tom regarding one point – the fact that Ozil’s assist came from the left wing is irrelevant to his best position. The fact that at times he can roam to the wing is not to be confused with the tactical chores that are coupled with playing in the wing (which are not just tracking back) – but having the discipline to observe when the full back is overlapping, etc.

    The fact that he likes to play in the middle, and that he was very outspoken about it, is the best evidence in my opinion. Not all players are versatile; not all players are adaptable; it’s a bit like normal people. Some people can be good at many things; some can be brilliant at a few things.

  15. Final score:

    Leicester 5-3 Manchester United

    It is amazing how spending some fucking money and buying ‘world class’ players can solve all problems.

  16. Isn’t it about time MANU spent some money???!!!! OMG can’t wait to read what all the anti-Arsenal sites will say about THIS ONE; They need time to settle..bla bla bla hahahahaha

  17. Bootoomee

    £200 Million spent and still shite.

    What an absolute, shameful mess there last manager left them in.

    Now who was that ?????????????

  18. Aston Villa 0 – 0 ARSENAL

    West Ham 3 – 1 Liverpool

    Man Utd 3 – 5 Leicester City

    Spurs 0 – 1 WBA

    City 1 – 1 Chelsea

    Everton 2 – 3 crystal Palace.

    WTF will the AAA’s make of that lot.

  19. Terrible weekend for the darlings of the aaa and media. Spurs, Liverpool and Utd…..guess Everton fit into that bracket as well.And even Chelsea they surely would have won that if they had shown any ambition.
    Bet there are some very busy newspaper editors trying to put positive spins on their favorite teams.
    I know I have said this before…….but if Moyes had done that!

  20. jambug,

    I know 🙂

    The belief that buying ‘world class’ players solve all problems is both simplistic and misguided. Most of the time, the problems that teams face are tactical and rethinking of strategies can help most of the time. Unfortunately the paid yappers on TV talks about one thing and one thing only: BUYING PLAYERS.

    And to be fair to Ferguson, you’ve got to hand it to him: he worked miracles with that shitty squad.

  21. A Chelsea loss would have made it better for me but I will take the MC-Chelsea draw as a good result.
    Still haven’t played great (=exceptional) football and just 4 points off the league leaders. All the other “favourites” behind us like Liverpool, MC, MU.
    Not that bad for a “team in crisis”.

  22. Mandy

    Collymores first words on Talkshite.

    “I don’t want to throw United under the bus I just want to talk about where they go now”

    F**k me if you cant throw them ‘under the bus’ after there start, and todays performance and result, when can you.

    Can you imagine the shite he and Talkshite would be throwing at us under the same circumstances !

    We’ve had more shit after winning a game.

  23. Colleymore is quite amazing, a force of nature when it comes to ignorance.
    We got slaughtered by the media with the Dowd assisted draw at Newcastle. What Utd did today should be subject to much media scrutiny it the media are true to form and treating teams equally.
    Then……there is the elephant in the room…..Liverpool.
    And Spurs! I know a Southampton fan well, who is convinced The Poc is just press press press….and very little else when that goes wrong ! We shall see….

  24. Bootoomee

    ‘And to be fair to Ferguson, you’ve got to hand it to him: he worked miracles with that shitty squad’.

    There is no doubt that he did get more out of them than most would but I still believe that the influence he had over the Referees was more important.

    Since he departed I have seen penalties given for and against Utd that you would never of seen when he was there.

    I maintain his influence over Referees was worth at least 10 points a season.

    That is MASSIVE.

    But you are right, he did squeeze more out of average players than most could of done.

  25. A perfect weekend football wise. I’d have preferred a city win if anyone was going to win that encounter but a draw is a better result. So out of the proverbial top 6/7 we’re the only side to collect maximum points? To borrow from Walter, ‘not bad for a team in a crisis’ 🙂

  26. The commentators were constantly saying something about the referee during the ManU humiliation. Yes, humiliation. Not just in terms of the score either. They simply could not cope with Liecester in those 20-30 minutes and just fell apart.

    How much did they spend in the summer? How much of a genius was Van Gaal being hailed as even during the World Cup? And that because he substituted a keeper after 119 minutes and they happened to win the penalty shootout.

    As for Jose’s boring Chelsea. Remember how us conceding to ManCity after we were 2-1 up was because ‘Arsenal have a soft underbelly’? What about Chelsea conceding to a 10 man City? I bet the story will be Lampard, and that despite that, Chelsea got what they came to town for, so Jose’s a genius.

  27. Amazing weekend ! Bazillion cards and a few injuries in the 1-1 bore-draw of Bunkerinho… plus a little fuck you from Fat Frank… just can’t get any better.

    And the other results too, all perfect.

    Chelsea look very mediocre against top opposition. And nobody talks about it being their second draw in a row. Cesc played like a 3rd CB, and they were a whistle blow away from conceding a penalty. Up until now, decisions not particularly favoring City or Manu, it seems like Roman paid the most…

    Oh well… As long as everybody says they will take the title walking backwards.

    Did you all see the Falcao slip? Quality player, ain’t he?

    Jeez, this weekend can get me going on for DAYS !

  28. Oh, and a win for Hamilton coupled with a Rosberg retirement…., couldn’t have asked for a better weekend 🙂

  29. jambug

    Exactly. Ferguson was a very good manager indeed, and while we were going at it in the late 90s, early 2000s, there was genuine respect there, even though there was a definite bias in their favour even then.

    But then came Arsenal’s new stadium with a team more technically gifted than any other, and Chelsea’s millions, and suddenly ManU had nothing like the technical and financial dominance they were used to. At some point there, referees started helping them more and more, to the point that I don’t care how good a manager Ferguson was. The main reason he won was because of cheating.

  30. Seem to recall some pretty unpleasant comments aimed at wenger and the team…..when we got a draw at Leicester!!!
    Fergie…..refs, yes they were worth a few points to him, so were some compliant , usually home grown managers. Must admit, I was expecting Van Gaal to get serious ref favours, but after today, may have to reassess this assumption…..maybe they will just get the same as most others…..

  31. Amazing results today, long may it continue!For the first time since 1771 the AAA are glad to be supporting the Arsenal!
    Collymore was putting the boot in about Wenger big time on Friday.Im sure slowly everyone in football starts to loathe pundits.Theyre like the Harry Endfield character, that was always saying”you dont wanna do it like that”…
    Anyway, it suddenly came to me;Collymore, Robson and Scholes,just imagine them in Showaddywaddy suits, with arms a bit too short.Scholes probably already has one already.I wonder if he will be spouting the poop off about LVG?
    COYG! Aha and Amen.

  32. Buy…buy….buy….I know of a guy, who admittedly is a bit of a conspiracy theorist, but one who claims to have inside trading knowledge who says agents, pundits , the media and sometimes organised crime are all in it together, so pundits may have a vested interest in buy buy buy. Of course, this guy may be wrong…….

  33. Mandy

    Agree on perhaps needing to re-evaluate LVG, ManU, and the referees, although I am still suspicious they are saving it up for later and just enough to get them top 4.

    Also for the conspiracy theorists theory. I think it would be absolutely shocking if such relationships and mish-mash of interests did NOT exist in the game. Not that every pundit has a vested interest apart from keeping their jobs (and so can’t afford to be left behind the general chatter), but I think it plays a huge part. IN fact, I argue that the creation of a transfer window was done only to create an artificial scarcity for players, so as to bump up their price, meaning agents and other silent players stand more to gain.

  34. Kenneth Widmerpool

    Put Owen in there and I think we have a band.

    Talking of Scholes. Since he crawled out from under his rock he has done nothing but criticise Arsenal in general and Wenger in particular.

    I thought Robson, Owen, Collymore etc, where bad, but he’s managed to trump the lot of them.

    I have to say, considering the competition, that is some achievement.

  35. Do ALL the above mentioned teams need a MONSTER DM to solve their defensive frailties ? They seem to be in vogue at present .
    Liverpuddle may also need a MONSTER rightback too , as all the goals against them went in on that side .
    Tony Pullis (commentating in Malaysia )” Arsenal are the only side of those who played in Europe to win this weekend.” Hmmmmm !

  36. Brickfields

    Suggests to me we might actually of ‘thrown’ the match in mid week. It certainly looked like it 🙂

  37. @Jambug,
    Scholes (the mighty tackler) is the natural successor to Alan Hansen.
    If you can find a club to criticise in all it does, you will be never be short of work in the media. Scholes is now on a nice little earner.

  38. Jambug, you can see it now,Woodstock 1969: “Ladies and Gentlemen… Robson, Owen, Scholes and Collymore”(boos and hisses)….
    Manager: Sepp Blatter.Being the manager Blatter wears a blue Showaddywaddy suit,arms too short, but no shirt underneath,big medallion.
    Set list includes:
    “Hooray for the AAA”
    “how much is that dirty Dogger in the window?”
    “Yer What?Calm down calm down, cockney Arsenal are crap”
    “Wilshire’s crap”
    “Ozzel’s crap”
    “Urzels crap”
    “Wengers crap”

  39. Kenneth, Mandy

    Woodstock? Showaddywaddy?

    People will start to think we’re a bunch of old fogies. 🙂

  40. Are we the only side to get a positive result this weekend from all the teams that played in europe last week

  41. old Fogies under the Showaddywaddy Woodstock moon of Blatter love? Throw in Scholes and thats worse than a bad night round at the COOP.

  42. Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh Sean-boy and our AAA lapdogs where are you? No excrement to spew over the Arsenal today? Isn’t it ¨tragic¨ when AFC force those rats back into their slimy burrows? Surely there must be SOMETHING you can lament and about criticise about that game?

  43. Omg can’t believe it we are going to beat Man U home and away, Chambers luckyv to be not sent of yesterday , bring on Sat I’ll be there can’t wait great weekend.

  44. Omg can’t believe it we are going to beat Man U home and away, Chambers luckyv to be not sent of yesterday , bring on Sat I’ll be there can’t wait !

  45. hahahahahahahahaha…what a week-end…slowly on the way to getting drunk…So munch bla bla by anti arsenal LOT, its nice to sit back and enjoy 🙂

  46. Can only agree with you Shard……agents seem to do very well these days.
    Lots of talk of Showaddywaddy today! Seem to Remember one of their offspring became a reasonably top footballer a while back,Scott Oakes. Guess they have that over contemporaries such as Mud and Darts!
    But you bring to mind a truely worrying image Kenneth! WHEN will wenger go….I WONDER WHY he is still here….STEP 1……you find an oligarch…..

  47. Seriously, sports-wise this weekend can’t get any better.

    As for Scholes or Owen – I will always prefer a mean shit head with half a brain (Scholes), over a mumbling shit head with no brain (Owen).

  48. Tommie Gun I think throwing bowling balls at the would be best. I wondered why scholes never said much now I understand. And Owen has such a wingy voice!!! Aaaah!!

  49. Just seen some unbelievably comical defending from utd on motd. Danny Murphy and Hasselbaink duly obliged, savaging utd’s shambolic defending.

  50. The lesser Frankie (the real deal being Vercauteren) did not want to celebrate, but his new teammates swarmed him with big fat smooches saying:
    “We love you, you little traitor” and Pellegrini was seen trying to locate the 30 silver coins; apparently, the oilers were out of little change.

  51. The Chelsea manager quite often remarks at clubs selling or releasing players. ” I cannot understand Real selling Ozil” or Barcelona selling Fabregas” or Chelsea releasing Lampard Jose? ..funny old game

  52. Gareth Crooks… his team of the week will include Loris, Verthongen, Capoue, Kaboul, Ben Davies, Eriksen……even if some of them didn’t even play!

  53. Sorry to bring any negativity to things, but the article below makes a lot sense of what we see around us, but also very depressing reading.
    Whether you chose to believe this in its entirety,it is clear much is going on within the game.Thankfully, we have a manager above such things, and he pays the price for being on this moral high ground. Always worth remembering that, as the mindless insults and abuse continually come his way, including from the idiot ranks of our supporters, sheep who buy into the agendas of others.

  54. @ Mandy Dodds, your post makes total sense, especially when we see how the anti-Arsenal brigade (Media and certain AAA as well as others like refs etc…) harp on and stand against our beautiful/CLEAN club.

    Perhaps this lot are so against us because we won’t be dragged down into their CORRUPTION type of game 😉

  55. @Mandy

    Very interesting link re football in England in general.

    Wrt Arsenal there may by an additional element, someone or a grouping, seems to have a very determined anti Wenger and anti Arsenal agenda, with the objective of undermining the club/main shareholder.

  56. The most interesting thing was the PGMOL were abysmal this weekend. Despite this Arsenal shone like a polished diamond.

    It is lovely seeing all the humour on twitter.

    Pundits were in a right state trying to be intelligent.

Comments are closed.