I have no idea if anyone who went to Rome ever reads my rambling comments, but if they do, I would like to say a very deep thank-you for last night. I couldn’t go because of work commitments, but to see them there, to hear the noise, and to watch the Arsenal players quite rightly spend a few moment with them at the end of the game, was great.
The fans who were in Rome represented all of us, and did us proud with their commitment. I do hope a few of the late arrivers early leavers at the Ems took note.
It was also great to hear the Lord Wenger’s comments after the game. Let me pass on one bit of what he said, as reported in the Guardian today, just in case you didn’t see it…
“I am delighted and proud because after we conceded an early goal and missed the first kick of the shoot-out, we needed something special.
“We showed tremendous mental strength to come back and win. I am so proud of that because that is a quality that has been questioned this season. You could see that we have improved tremendously in that regard. This result will improve our confidence.
“I was concerned that we could be the one English team to go out and that would have been detrimental to the progress of the team, so winning will certainly help us.”
I was proud too, sitting in my little house watching it on Sky. I was also outraged beyond measure at the Sky presentation. Never have I seen or heard a more lopsided, distorted programme. I was watching on Sky Sports 3 HD (I think it was also on SS Extra, and it may have been different there) and the whole introduction showed just shots of players of KGB Fulham, Manchester B and Liverpool I. Not an Arsenal player in sight.
As for the commentary – I don’t know what has happened to Alan Smith, whom I adored as a player, but I can only guess he has spent so long in the company of other journalists that he is forgetting the realities. I do recall seeing him in the press section at Highbury giving up on a game he was reporting for the Telegraph about 20 minutes into the second half and just nattering away with another reporter (whom I did not recognise) next to him. There were good bits in that game as well as the errors Alan – you should have seen them too.
In the end I had to turn the commentary off it was so lopsided. Maybe it is just me getting old and crotchety, but that whole programme would have taken me into heart attack country were it not for the fact that I exercise so regularly on the dance floor.
Anyway, we did it, we are through, and the momentum continues. The unbeaten series in all competitions has taken a knock, but the unbeaten in the league continues, ready for us to swish aside the Rotational Timewasters. (Watch Blackburn start timewasting 32 minutes before kick off thus creating a new world record).
On the home front I’m sorry that the injury monitor on the home page went up the shoot last week. I get the feed from elsewhere, and it has been quite good until now, so I didn’t want to take it down – but I just pushed it much further down the page on the right side. Anyway it is back working now, and shows, shock horror gasp amazement sighs of incredulity, (Thursday lunchtime) Adebayor and Silvestre 2 days, with Fabregas and Rosicky 1 week. Of course those figures often stretch out because of “match fitness” but still, it is quite something.
Last point – about the plagiarists. After my little shout about a guy lifting the text from one site and then putting it in the comments section here, the Band of Nutters took it on themselves to deluge this site with texts stolen from elsewhere. I went through a deleted all the ones that were obvious – and then went back to remove some more that slipped through.
Unfortunately in the midst of all this I took down one comment from an author of a comment who had published it on another site. Not what I intended – but if you are putting in a comment here which has already appeared elsewhere, perhaps you could start by saying that, so I know.
Goodness knows what the Barmy Squad want to muck about with this site in this way, but as one who primarily earns his living through putting one word after another, I do get a bit shirty about the wholesale copying of others’ work. You can copy quotes of course (the Wenger quotes here are lifted from the Guardian’s site as I acknowledge) and you can develop ideas, but (in my book at least) not word for word for word for word for word for word for word for word for word
Sorry I think I dropped off there.
(c) Tony 2009
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