By Tony Attwood
Of all the many things I have never ever imagined myself doing dancing in a bar with a group of friend at 2am to a Showaddywaddy tribute band must be right up there on the list But thus it was in the early hours of this morning, and now of course my back is telling me that this is not the sort of thing a man of a certain age should do.
But the little group of us who did exactly that drew an appreciative crowd of onlookers, and from what I can gather this morning, most of us seem to have emerged for a (rather belated) breakfast.
Seeing that Walter has not posted this morning I am hoping that he made it back to Antwerp ok and either got home and went straight off to work, or is still sleeping. And so, since I’ve managed to get back on line (a miracle of hotel technology) I’m filling in.
And what strikes me this morning is the supreme arrogance of the commentators and journalists who do the commentaries on TV – or at least the bunch of drongos on Bein TV.
The crowd noise was picked up well by the TV programming I watched yesterday (I always get the impression that Sky, Sprout and the BBC always cut the crowd noise to a minimum at Arsenal) and it seemed clear to me that there were quite a few people in the ground who were in disagreement with a few of the refs decisions.
Of course that was the home crowd – but given the way the crowd can turn on Arsenal, or at least go rather quiet, it seemed from a distance of quite a few hundred miles that others shared my view that the referee most certainly did know what he was doing, but it had little to do with fair refereeing.
Yet the commentators ignored this totally and the three men in the studio seemed to be saying, “well, these people watching, they don’t know anything. 55,000 or so Arsenal supporters? Well, you can’t trust them can you! Listen to us three.”
Part of the problem is that these journalists (I use the word in the modern sense) tend to be people who simply skip from game to game following the TV station’s pre-ordained script. Arsenal are useless, never forget it, and if they get a win it is always by chance.
Such people, be they TV journalists or newspaper writers simply don’t take any account of what the people who support the clubs think. And yet surely we are the main people. We pay for tickets, buy TV subscriptions and above all commit. Yet it seems we know nothing.
Take Bruce Archer at the Express as one example.
Bruce Archer is a busy man. On Tuesday this past week he wrote no less than 10 articles for the Daily Express. These included
- Alexis Sanchez: I’ve been watching this Barcelona star to help improve my game at Arsenal
- Man United boss Jose Mourinho eyes Southampton and Bayern Munich stars in January rebuild
- Man United ace: This is why we need to get back on track in the Europa League
- Joel Matip on his Liverpool move: Defender reveals the secret to settling at Anfield
- Arsenal star ready to commit his future to the club: I could stay here for my whole career
- Man United fitness boost: Jose Mourinho’s star man ahead of schedule in injury return
- Tottenham team news: Kane, Alli and Dembele all passed fit for Monaco clash
- Confirmed: Arsenal star Hector Bellerin agrees new bumper contract
- Arena replaces Jurgen Klinsmann as US head coach: Outlines his plan for qualifying
Yep, all by Bruce Archer, all in one day. A man who is it seems is writing at a rate of 2000 articles a year. To give you the full flavour of what the working conditions at the Daily Express are like for the poor overwhelmed Mr Archer, seemingly now working entirely on his own, consider this.
Written of course by Bruce Archer. Here is a bit of his article.
It is also a form of the much derided click bait – a way of getting more and more and more people to click on your website for two purposes: one to take the site up the Google rankings, and the other to get people to click either on the adverts or on the sponsored articles that now surround all these pieces.
Articles such as “The 20 biggest mistakes that GPs make every day of the year,” and “You won’t believe what these ex-TV stars look like.” They are everywhere; goodness knows why.
I guess most serious supporters know what gibberish the media publishes, and yet the media goes on getting away with it day after day, week after week, year… well you know what I mean.
The whole process demeans football, of course, but it does far more than that. It is used (as in the case of Bein Sports covering the Arsenal match) in order to present a totally negative picture of Arsenal and to put forward the view that anyone who questions the referees is an idiot.
And now, having got that off my chest, I think I shall go down to the beach for a coffee.