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October 2020
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Video of the recent game for Arsenal’s youngsters, ahead of the Leicester match

By Tony Attwood

Looked at so far the season has been a rather jolly affair…

Date Match Result Score Competition
29 Aug 2020 Arsenal v Liverpool W 1-1 (5-4) Community Shield
08 Sep 2020 Ipswich Town v Arsenal W 1-2 Football League Trophy
12 Sep 2020 Fulham v Arsenal W 0-3 Premier League
19 Sep 2020 Arsenal v West Ham United W 2-1 Premier League

And writing that list also reminded me that I didn’t publish anything about the trophy match two weeks ago – which I normally try and do.  So here is a brief video in case you missed it…

We also play Gillingham and Crawley in that competition, and if there is a return to crowds at matches then I would hope as usual to get to at least one of the games.  In recent seasons we’ve trotted along to Peterborough, Northampton and Coventry, and it has always been a nice evening out.

The team for that game is given at the start of the video, and I guess it is possible we might see one or two of these players tomorrow against Leicester.   Watch out for Balogun is the watchword.

Meanwhile we have a bit of player news in that the Alex Runarsson has actually signed.   You may remember a little piece we did “Why would Arsenal sign utterly useless Wenger hating goalkeeper” which is about the self same player.

I should add that headline was a reflection of what the media was saying about him at the time.  They have now utterly abandoned that theme, which suggests the stories the media was reporting before we to say the least, untrue, and quite possibly the club had a word with them about laying off.

Anyway the reportage that I focused on in the article noted above was in the Daily Mail, so I thought I’d look and see how they covered the fact of the player’s arrival.

Here is the opening of their piece…

Watch Arsenal Live Streams With StreamFootball.tv

Arsenal sign Icelandic goalkeeper Alex Runarsson from Dijon on four-year contract… as 25-year-old replaces Emiliano Martinez as Mikel Arteta’s back-up to No 1 Bernd Leno

  • Alex Runarsson has signed a four-year deal at Arsenal on Monday evening
  • The 25-year-old made 13 appearances for Ligue 1 side Dijon last season
  • The move comes after Emiliano Martinez left Arsenal last week for Aston Villa
  • Runarsson will now play second fiddle to Bernd Leno in between the sticks

The article by Kieran Jackson makes no mention of their previous tirade against the player published so recently.

As ever with a Daily Mail article, most of the piece is taken up with sentences which spell out the prime point of the article – Arsenal have a new backup keeper – in fifteen slightly different ways.  They then add a few quotes…

Manager Mikel Arteta said: ‘We want to create healthy competition for places and we look forward to seeing Alex bring further depth to the goalkeeping position.’

Technical director Edu said: ‘We’re very pleased to welcome Alex to our squad.

‘We have been monitoring him for some time and from the analysis, he has strong attributes that we look for in a goalkeeper and as a person.’

So still we are looking for all the scandal highlighted by them in their previous article – the virulent anti-Wengerian tweets, the appalling record he has as a keeper etc etc.   But none of that appears.  Instead we are told by the Mail that “The 25-year-old joined joined Ligue 1 side Dijon in July 2018 and made 13 appearances in all competitions last season.

“He started his career with KR Reykjavik in Iceland, before joining FC Nordsjaelland in Denmark, where he made 62 appearances during a three-year spell.   Runarsson has also recorded five caps for his country and was on the bench during the Nations League defeat by England earlier this month.”

Now isn’t that all a bit strange?   I mean if the young man had actually done all the terrible things quoted in the article just a few days before, and had also been a totally rubbish keeper, surely that would make an even bigger story now that we have signed him.

Unless….

…unless of course none of the accusations were true, the club warned the paper not to run them again or else they could face legal action, and the newspaper then shut up.

Obviously, since Untold is just a blog run by a tiny number of enthusiasts, we don’t have the resources to work out if this was the case, so all we can note is that it is strange that one day the Mail comes up with these terrible tales about the player, and then when we sign him, they shut up.

Meanwhile one other little story.  “Middlesbrough sign Chuba Akpom in £2.75m deal as ex-Arsenal striker joins from Greek club PAOK after helping them win 2019 league and cup double.”  Chuba is now 24, and that Greek double should not be treated lightly.  The rule in Greece is that Olympiacos wins every year (well to give you the 21st century list, in 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2020.

It was PAOK’s first trophies for 34 years and Chuba scored the winning goal in the cup final.   Previously he had played 12 times for Arsenal, having joined aged six, and had loans at Brentford, Coventry, Nottingham Forest, Hull, Brighton and Sint-Truiden, as well as representing England up to the under 21s.

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