Posts Tagged ‘Inler


Your pain, their profit

The British media have caught on and are now using the collective psychic pain felt by Arsenal supporters over their lack of signing a Defensive Midifelder to push their papers. Over the summer, the press have stated that Arsenal have bid on Inler, Barry, Alonso, M’Bia, and Appiah. There’s some question over how serious the interest in Barry was, so, for the sake of argument, let’s just drop him as a target. Still, that’s no less than three players that Wenger put in a serious bid for and one player who may yet join us on a free transfer if he doesn’t choose London’s fourth best Premier League team. These revelations that Arsenal were so agressive in the transfer market have shocked many people, including those folks in the press. After all, we all heard Arsene say, time and again, that the team was good enough as it stood. The press though are now running with the story and we’re again being linked with each of these players — in January. Plus, the Telegraph throws one extra in, Sebastian Giovinco, just for fun. YAY, it’s like the transfer window is still open!

The only way this works for the press is that we’re all on such pins and needles about not signing a defensive midfielder this summer that we’re still begging for news, any news, that Arsenal will sign someone. It’s great press, and whenever Stephen Appiah takes a dump the reporters are there waiting. So they can publish such blockbuster stories as “No Decision Yet” and “Decision Some Time Next Week, or Later.” 

Let me help you all the best I can. Alonso is not walking through that door. Inler was too afraid to play in the Premier League, so we don’t want him any way. M’Bia? Who? And Appiah will either sign for Arsenal and have a real shot at winning the Champions League, or will choose to play to keep West Ham from making the drop. If he chooses the latter, we don’t need him because it would mean that, like Inler, he just wasn’t confident enough to play under the bright lights of the Emirates. Sure, he may say the contract was better at West Ham and he wants to “build” West Ham, blah blah, but honestly? Sometimes, like Adebayor did, you take a pay cut to play for a team like Arsenal, that’s what Arsene means when he talks about building a culture at the club.

So, Appiah will either sign or he won’t. If he does, then we’ll all welcome him with open arms.  If not, oh well, it’s for the best.

World Cup

Theo Walcott is ready to be battered and deep fried on Wednesday, if Capello plays him. Typically, I couldn’t care less who plays where in World football. I do however like that Walcott said the following

I always get battered. I’m used to it now and it doesn’t bother me at all. The main thing is to ignore them and get up. If you don’t, they know they have got you in their pocket. You just have to get up, give them a little smile and they know you will be at them again. That’s what you have to do – remind them that you won’t go away. I will keep doing the right things and maybe the referees will recognise it. 

YES! Get up and get on with it. The FA should have adopted this statement as their mantra for their ridiculous “get on with the game” program. As I’ve said before, this type of simulation (the Ronaldo style of “I feel contact I go down”) is the most destructive, disruptive, and difficult to stamp out. But if the FA just adopt Theo’s statement as their philosophy and book anyone who is rolling around on the ground, remonstrating the ref or generally simulating injury then the game would be 100% more enjoyable to watch. Hell, Theo’s statement almost makes me want to watch him play on Wednesday, almost. 

Enough about that… I guess there’s a lot of matches tomorrow in which a lot of Arsenal players have a good chance to get injured. Let’s hope they don’t because Arsenal have to play Blackburn on Saturday.

That’s it for the day see you on Wednesday.


Lehmann’s secret recipe

If there’s a bright side to Euro 2008, it’s got to be former Arsenal (and current Germany) goal keeper Jens Lehmann: he’s crazier than a shit-house rat as we like to say over here.

Yesterday he revealed that he’s given Germany his secret recipe for stopping Ronaldo when Germany face Portugal on Thursday. I’m always skeptical of people claiming to be a “such and such stopper,” like when former Seattle Super Sonics dud Ruben Patterson famously claimed to be the “Kobe Stopper.” If I remember correctly, Kobe Bryant put up, like, 45 points in one game against the Kobe Stopper that year. The point is, these types of stories almost always backfire on the braggart.

But Jens is slightly different. Shall we say, special? In the 2006 World Cup, after Germany defeated Argentina on penalties (with Jens saving two shots) the crazy German pulled a piece of paper out of his sock. On that paper were notes on which direction to dive to save the Argentine penalty takers.

Furthermore, his claim about stopping Ronaldo is based in fact. As I have pointed out here several times, Arsenal have effectively neutralized Ronaldo when the two clubs have met. The linked article above puts Arsenal at only allowing 4 goals from 11 meetings — with his last goal against Arsenal coming off a penalty. Honestly, I’m not sure that any of his 4 goals against Arsenal have come from the run of play. Regardless, pretty clearly, Wenger’s got Ronaldo’s number.

And what is the secret? I think it’s putting a defender in a wing position and having your holding midfielder stay with Ronaldo at all times to limit touches. Then when he does get a touch, the fullback pushes him outside. This limits Ronaldo’s creativity because the touch line acts like a second defender. As long as you keep him near the touch line, you limit him.

No doubt, Ronaldo will have heard Lehmann’s braggadocio and will be pinning the article up in his locker for inspiration. I wish I could take the day off to watch the game now, honestly.

Squad News

Barcelona is preparing to undercut Inter in the race to sign Adebayor. Yes, that’s right, Barcelona are prepared to offer LESS money in a sneaky attempt to fool Arsenal into letting Adebayor go. Barca heard Arsenal say “Ade is worth £32m” and responded with “how about… £24m?” Obviously, Arsenal are going to have to take the offer, it’s a dream come true! They have to sell Adebayor quickly and cheaply because if they don’t, Spurs might beat them to it, what with Barcelona rumored to be after Bobblehead too.

If you didn’t get a chance to see van Persie’s “stunning” goal you can see it in that link there. Uhh, not to take anything away from Robin, but the keeper should have dealt with that ball easily. But that’s what you get in these international competitions: mediocre play hyped as “greatness.”

Albiol’s agent moved quickly to say that Arsenal are not after his player and that his player is happy in Spain. Yes! Another player NOT going to Arsenal. That list is getting pretty long now, isn’t it?

You would think that the press would give up after they have literally gotten every story and rumor wrong so far, but no. Why let a few miserable failures get you down? They are now linking Inler to Arsenal. Expect the denial to follow in 3… 2….

Premier League News

David Bentley is hoping to move to Spurs. Ohpleasegodletthisbetrue. I can’t wait for Arsenal to stomp all over Bentley in a Spurs uniform.

Meanwhile, the English Parliament, not to be outdone by the U.S. Congress’ investigation into American sports and hoping to head off the insanity of Michel Platini and the European Parliament, are planning to form the kangaroo court of kangaroo courts. I don’t care what they’re investigating, I just want to see the testimony of their list of people that they are inviting:

  • Hicks and Gillette — to testify about their stormy relationship. Perhaps we’ll finally clear up who gets custody of the luxury box in the divorce.
  • Thaksin Shinawatra — because everyone loves to hear from an accused human rights violator turned sports owner.
  • Former Chelsea manager and raving lunatic Jose Mourinho. His testimony alone will be comedy gold.
  • Sepp Blatter and Michel Platini — awesome, I need something to write about.
  • Jose Canseco and Roger Clemens — why not?
  • The lord Jesus Christ
  • His best friend and personal confidant George W. Bush
  • That lady who runs the chip shop in Manchester.
  • And, to round everything off, testimony from Colin Powell on where exactly Liverpool are hiding the weapons of mass destruction.

It should be full of awesome and win. I can’t wait to read about it.

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