Supporting is the name of the game

By Walter Broeckx

After a few matches in which we didn’t play that well we managed to get back to winning ways with the 3-1 win over Bournemouth. One would think that everyone would be happy and satisfied in Arsenal circles.

But after having had enough sleep I went on the internet and searched for reactions from Gooners worldwide. Of course most people showed happiness and delight over the win. And being happy not just about beating the tough Bournemouth players but also a ref that made some strange decisions.

With Arsenal winning and staying unbeaten since the opening day in the PL the moaners are feeling a bit uncomfortable. We can see this in the comment section. Since a few weeks we hardly get the comments we all have seen in the past. Moaning about Wenger who has lost it, who is useless, who has  no clue anymore. Now every now and then we have a desperate moaner who will start his moan when we even don’t lose but have a draw.

Now  I do admit that getting 3 draws in a row was a bit frustrating. Winning one of those matches and we would have been level on points with Manchester City and Liverpool! . But in those 3 draws we didn’t play at our best and certainly the match at Manchester United was a bit of a let off. We played below par in that match. The reason some players didn’t reach their level is one of those strange things you get from time to time. Having one of your top performers travelling for hours on a plane just in time to have a Friday training and then go with the rest of the team to Manchester will not have helped him perform.  But with the whole team looking slow one can wonder if there is something bad in the air of the dressing room that Arsenal have to sit in. The smell of the Old Toilet maybe?

But whatever the reason, we didn’t perform like we can. That is beyond doubt. Against Bournemouth we started very well and then had the first setback to see Debuchy having to come off hardly 12 minutes after having started a game for the first time since….. Stoke almost two years ago. It broke my heart a bit as he was doing rather well after such a long time and looked strong going forward and defending. I even thought to myself: Hector, you will have to be at your best when you come back. And then Debuchy broke down again. This must have been terrible for him.

The next setback was when the referee and his assistant completely ignored a blatant foul on Özil and then punished a possible small foul in the penalty area to give Bournemouth a penalty. We had to overcome another big hurdle. But for me the team showed resielence when they were having a bad time. Just as they did against Manchester United and PSG. And after having found their balance again they went on to win the match. Not the best performance but a performance that showed determination and a big fighting spirit to not only beat the opponent but also whatever the ref had in mind.

And now I see comment such as: It’s only Bournemouth and we struggled to beat them. Yes we struggled to beat them when maybe we shouldn’t have struggled if a ref had done his job in a decent way.

People call it a lucky win. Maybe for the Monreal handball that wasn’t given. But it was us who hit the crossbar and it was Bournemouth who got a very, very soft penalty that never should have happened if the ref had done his job.  So I really find it hard to understand when people call us lucky. Maybe they are just parotting what was said in the TV studios?

Maybe people should understand that in each season even when you win the league you have periods when you play bad.  Nowadays it seems hard to understand but even the invincibles had their bad spells during the invincible season. In fact we weren top of the league from the first match till the last match of the season. It took us a while before we were top of the league. Nowadays with our memory forgetting the bad things it is remembered as one happy walk from win to win. Believe me there have been drab draws in that season when we even maybe didn’t deserve the draw. But the invincble managed to avoid defeat in those matches. Just like our current team has done since the 2nd day of the season.

This is not something to moan about. For me it is something to be happy about. Because character is what makes a team big. And we have plenty of character now in the squad. For me it is a sign of character to play badly but not allow yourself to lose the match. Even when you look terrible for 88 minutes, we still fight in minute 89 to get a point. And I will not moan for that. Form is a strange thing. Then you got it and you win game after game after game. And suddenly without a reason you hit the wall and nothing works for a while.

At such a time it is not about moaning. It is about supporting. I’m sure the way the crowd reacted during the first half it was the rigth direction. The stadium let the ref know what they thought about him and felt one with the players. That was the right way to react. The only moaning in the ground I heard was about the ref. And that is how it should be. We got behind our players and even with their confidence not high because of the previous results we both got going again. And won the match.

It was good to see that even without playing at our best we managed to win this match in such circumstances. Maybe having to overcome the hurdles made it even more enjoyable for the players to get back to winning ways.



14 Replies to “Supporting is the name of the game”

  1. ‘The only moaning in the ground I heard was about the ref.’
    I’d say that just about sums up the comments here on Untold since the match finished. I certainly haven’t seen any other criticisms.
    The refereeing was poor all round and could have ruined a decent enough game.

  2. I live in Arsenal and Arsenal lives in me and that’s why my support for Arsenal at anytime anywhere is unparalleled. I am a patriot of Arsenal.

    It’s good to be lucky and I want to be lucky and fortunate too. I don’t mind if Arsenal are getting lucky and lucky in every game they play to avoid a lose and even to be lucky to win games.

    Moaners? Of course in every event that occasioned some events like the last 4 games Arsenal have played. The moaners will moan because to them Arsenal have luckily drawn instead of losing and have luckily won because the opposition played well. So no need we keep bothering ourselves over the moaners moaning. Let them moan, Arsenal will continue to move on. The less we bother of the moaners, the more Arsenal will move on.

    I believe comes tomorrow night, Arsenal will gracefully closed their month of November campaign in all competitions by obtaining a ELC semi-final ticket against Southampton at the Ems.

  3. Moaners will always moan! D reason being dat AW has spoilt d Arsenal Fan base nd supporters all around d world wit his scintilating beutiful brand of football such dat d expectation wen we play a match is so high nd anytin less dan d fast, pacey, short combination passes, et al means non performance by d team; this moaners conveniently forget dat d players are human beings and are affected by such extraneous factors to wich all humans are proned; even factory machines don’t give d same out put week in , week out how much more humanbeings, who are subject to different vagaries of life. Your submission Walter is sport on nd am game completely; d truth is all genuine supporters nd fans must find sometin positive about our team in every match nd give absolute support to d team gud or bad! Shalom!!!

  4. OT (sorry)
    Good to see Sky have done the right thing and sacked Eric Bristow following his comments about the young footballers abused by peadophile coaches.

  5. Either the EPL is the strongest league in the world or it contains clubs that are ‘push-overs’ any time you play them. Which one is it? Moaners can’t have it both ways.

  6. Moaning about the moaners appears to be what this site is for nowadays. Not convinced with the fragile contentment displayed here. You conclude that Arsenal did not play very well against an open, inferior opponent and some posters who crowed five nil before the game sound typically confused. Maybe it will turn out like the last time the Mancs won it. Another under performing team wins the CL.

  7. Walter, spot on (as usual).

    For those who have forgotten, our team in 1997-98 was pretty much written off by this stage of the season, out of Europe to mighty PAOK and with very few bright spots to rely upon.

    Our team in 2001-02 only scrapped through one of the tightest CL groups ever with three defeats in three away games and would have gone out if it hadn’t been for (wait for it) Richard Wright’s saved penalty against Panathinaikos. Don’t let me start moaning about league campaign – we lost our first home match to Leeds.

    And, The Invincibles… 0-1-2 after first three CL matches and – whisper it – pretty much second best at Old Trafford.

    Round of 16 secured, no defeat in 18 matches, picking points while looking flat and boring, even against the best teams in England and Europe. Not bad, I’d say.

  8. Walter et al

    I am nearing the finish of yet another pass through data gathering, picking up how many yellow cards were issued. Which results in corrections to 2nd yellow cards versus straight red cards. Sometimes I see a note about a penalty kick not resulting in the scoring of a goal, so I note that as it indicates the referee did issue a penalty kick to be taken.

    But, in latter entries, I am seeing a description of goals. Sometimes I seen “indirect free kick”, and just now I seen “free kick” as the description on a goal.

    An indirect free kick has to be touched by someone other than the kick taker, in order for a goal to be scored. I presume if it was touched by the defending team, it should be labelled an Own Goal and tagged with the person responsible. In which case, these indirect free kick and free kick entries are labelled with the last person (on the attacking team) to touch the ball, not the person taking the free kick. The format I am looking at, does allow for the name of the person previous to the goal scorer to be listed as having an assist. But this is not used in these situations (or so my memory is saying).

    Is there some other description for this, that I am missing? Or it is just a data format that doesn’t allow for an adequate description of the event?

  9. It’s good that we have won after too many draws.

    Let’s hope we continue this winning style in December and January.

  10. we might have a bad patch, but in the end we’ve got rather decent results
    i think Alexis was the best player for us throughout

  11. Nice article , Walter . There will always be amongst us those who seem to love being unhappy and try to pass this on to us . Thanks but no thanks . I pass !
    Sometimes it better to keep one’s own ( alleged ) wise counsel to oneself. The is of course some pleasure in silence.


    1. Be silent – in the heat of anger.

    2. Be silent – when you don’t have all the facts.

    3. Be silent – when you haven’t verified the story.

    4. Be silent – if your words will offend a weaker person.

    5. Be silent – when it is time to listen.

    6. Be silent – when you are tempted to make light of holy things.

    7. Be silent – when you are tempted to joke about a sin.

    8. Be silent – if you would be ashamed of your words later.

    9. Be silent – if your words would convey the wrong impression.

    10. Be silent – if the issue is none of your business.

    11. Be silent – when you are tempted to tell an outright lie.

    12. Be silent – if your words will damage someone else’s reputation.

    13. Be silent – if your words will damage a friendship.

    14. Be silent – when you are feeling critical.

    15. Be silent – if you can’t say it without screaming.

    16. Be silent – if your words will be a poor reflection of the Lord or your friends and family.

    17. Be silent – if you may have to eat your words later.

    18. Be silent – if you have already said it more than one time.

    19. Be silent – when you are tempted to flatter a wicked person.

    20. Be silent – when you are supposed to be working instead.


  12. We live in deeds, not years; in thoughts, not breaths
    – Philip James Bailey.

    We live in deeds, not years; in thoughts, not breaths;
    In feelings, not in figures on a dial.
    We should count time by heart-throbs. He most lives
    Who thinks most, feels the noblest, acts the best.
    And he whose heart beats quickest lives the longest:
    Lives in one hour more than in years do some
    Whose fat blood sleeps as it slips along their veins.
    Life’s but a means unto an end; that end,
    Beginning, mean, and end to all things—God.
    The dead have all the glory of the world.

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