Wenger unfair to the youth, how can that be?

Now let’s get this clear. I am not attempting to disrespect Arsene Wenger’s brilliance as a manager, in this article! What I am trying to do, is to understand the logic of how he sees certain youth players, and the way he treats them from a first team perspective.
Arsene has long held a justified reputation for his careful, studied treatment of young players and for allowing them to develop their careers in what is recognised as one of the best club structures in the world. But what is the actualite?

Well, over the past number of years, Le Prof has successfully put out “youthful” teams in the Carling Cup and to a lesser extent in the early rounds of the FA Cup. So, what do we define as “successful”? Well from 2003/4 to 2009/10 these youthful teams have, in the League Cup, reached 3 quarter-final rounds; 3 semi-final rounds and 1 final. Many clubs putting out their first team squads would be proud of this achievement.

So far, so good for the youth development system, it seems. But what has happened to the kids who have played in these teams, as regards their first team opportunities? Go on, tell me, how many have gone on to be included regularly in the first team squad, let alone play in the first team? Their names do not exactly flow off the tongue, do they?

Well, you could say that the youthful Cesc, Song and Denilson could fall into the successful category, but they were really “bought in” players, recruited from other teams’ youth development systems. There have also been many others included in the “bought in” category, including Merida, Barazite etc, who haven’t made it, as of today.

O.K. so, what of the British kids who have successfully come thru the Arsenal youth system and, via the League Cup, made it as first team regulars? How about Hoyte, Lansbury, Randall, Bentley, Sanchez-Watt to mention a few? Well none of these!
We have high hopes for the future success of young Jack Wilshire and perhaps Kyle Bartley, but so many others look doomed to make a living with lower league clubs.

There is undoubtedly a great new crop of youngster coming thru the system such as Zak Ansah, Chuks Aneke, Beni Afobe and Jay Emmanuelle-Thomas. I wish all of them a successful future for themselves and Arsenal.
But is Arsene, on the strength of the current situation, deserving of his reputation as a great developer of youthful talent for the Arsenal first team?

Well what do you think?

Written by Red Arse

The future of England 🙂



327 Responses to Wenger unfair to the youth, how can that be?

  1. rico says:

    Morning all….

  2. rico says:

    Nice one RA,

    The youth system bugs me a tad, I always believe in ‘if you’re good enough you’re old enough’ as we have seen with Rooney and Owen and others…

    What is the difference with being loaned to a PL club and playing for Arsenal, they all play the same oppo..

    Personally I think this coming season we will see more of Lansbury, JET, SW and Wilshere.

    Randall will never make with us, i don’t know why he doesn’t move on and Bentley had a bit of an attitude, we know what wenger does with them 😉

  3. rico says:

    To answer your question, i think he spots the youth players, but after he gets them he doesn’t seem to know what to do with them, however, Bouldy does 🙂

  4. Armourist says:

    yes he does. Walcott although bought in, is a certain starter, Gibbs will run Gael out of the team eventually and has covered the force when injured, and LJW is the Academy’s crown jewel, he will come through. Sanchez Watt will go on loan again and JET will be in the first team squad, so yes he does.

  5. rico says:

    Hi Amourist, sometimes I get frustrated when he does play some of the ‘youth’ – like Wilshere for eg.

    But I think wenger is a bit ahead of things sometimes, with the new home grown rule coming in, these young overseas players will be within that rule by the time they play..

  6. W.A.T.H says:

    The only thing unfair on the youth is not having the experience around them to help them “grow up”….! Watching Gilberto last night just really pissed me off…!

  7. W.A.T.H says:

    Morning Rico 😉

  8. rico says:

    Morning WATH, it did me too, the commentator here said ‘ Gilberto de Silva still doing exactly what it says on the tin, breaks up play then passes to a player with flair’

    How/Why we let him go and keep a little squirt who knew he would leave, is beyond me…

  9. Matt says:

    It’s not like Wenger can just promote everyone to the first team to sit on the fringes. he is integrating players when he can. Eastmond began the transition last season, with some success. Wenger will only integrate them when they are ready, because he will want players that are disciplined, and won’t rush into things, giving them a big head so they end up moving to other clubs

  10. rico says:

    The paps all report we have finally got Koscielny, having paid the 8.5 Lorient wanted, why oh why did we not just pay that a month ago, then this would have been sorted ages ago and maybe another one would be in the door by now too!!

  11. Armourist says:

    Its been very painful getting to this position both with the stadium move and the team inhibitions (no star players bought in) and whilst I’m not saying that its about to bear fruit, but it does seem all that forward thinking is going to pay off.

    Engalnd, Sky News and the general media including Stupid Collymore want Arsenal players in the national team, thats just the first of many signs that the fruit is coming, but of course it wont be seen by all till there’s a shiny trophy on the emirates mantlepiece.

    Maybe now that the nation sees the Arsenal as a source of much needed players that protect the ball and can pass it well, the ref’s will protect us more thats another good knock on effect.

  12. rico says:

    Matt, like Bentley…

  13. rico says:

    Armorist, that made me laugh yesterday, the same people who blame Wenger for destroying the England Team (bollox has he) had to eat a bit of humble pie…

    It must pain them no end!

  14. tommystout says:

    It will only be Arsene’s Wengerball that will save England, it was embarrassing to see the England so called world class players panic on the ball, in such a rush to get rid, wayward passing and all that lack of technique… these arsenal yougsters, the ones that make it through to our first team squad will have the bottle and not panic on the big stage.

  15. rico says:

    Hi tommystout,

    it some ways its good that england were embarrassed by germany, it will wake up the fa, stop the paps from expecting/telling the coach who to select and start with a new crop of players and yes, many will be arsenal players. finally i may get more interested in the england team…

    fed up with watching those lumps play…

  16. W.A.T.H says:

    England players panic on the ball cos they got no technique and very little skill. As for Wengerball and things paying off time will tell.

  17. rico says:

    Look how much wenger would have had to pay for anyone of those england players last summer??

    Are they worth it?? No, wenger is right not to pay over the odds for a player just because he is English…

  18. tommystout says:

    thats funny Rico,
    i barely watched england through the qualification because of lack of arsenal involvement…
    when JW JET walcott gibbs and co are the core players i’m gonna be glued!

  19. rico says:

    spot on tommy, i’ll be just the same, its hard to be enthused by a bunch over over paid, over rated lumps, some of whom have been in the press for naughtiness… roll on the euros, arsenal against the rest 😉 😉

  20. A says:

    How can lansbury be included in that list?! he’s still very much in the running to be a first team player for us!!

  21. rico says:

    Hi A, its just an eg of players, i hope Lansbury pushes his way in this coming season, he knuckled down on loan and got great reviews. I fear though if wenger doesn’t play him, Lansbury will ask to move on… He’s too good to be on a bench

  22. A says:

    Don’t agree with that rico – I think he’d jump at the chance to be on the bench. He’s only 19, but lost a whole year of his development because of injury/illness. A year in the squad, rotating and starting in league cup, playing the odd game for first team would be good for him to get him integrated, though another year on loan might do him good as well.

    At 19, having lost a year already, he’s not stupid enough to expect to be starting for us and kick up a fuss if not

  23. Red Arse says:

    Hi Rico, Wath,

    Interesting response from everyone, so far. Don’t disagree with anything that has been said, and is in line with the penultimate paragraph above.

    It is right to be forward looking and I said their is a wonderful crop coming thru versed in Wengerball.

    What I regret, both for the kids concerned and for Arsenal, is that so many since 2003 just disappeared, perhaps to clubs in the lower divisions or out of football.

  24. rico says:

    Ok, A, but its ok to disagree, i think he now knows what its lke to play every week, all i am suggesting is that AW starts giving him a bit of a chance..

    After all, he persists with Denilson…..

  25. rico says:

    Morning RA, great read by the way…

    Its like Simpson and Ayling – I thought Ayling was going to make it with us, but I think he has gone to Yeovil and Simpson has just been told he can leave… I know these were not bought as youth by wenger, but they are still young players who have not progressed…

    Wenger buys foreign kids, but along the way is he ‘killing the english kids’????

  26. Red Arse says:

    Hi A

    It was not supposed to be a value judgement on Lansbury or any other player. I also think he has all the skills to succeed. But what I am saying it is still “jam tomorrow”.

    I simply asked the question, how many youngsters can you name who played in season 2003 and later are now in the first team or first team squad?


  27. rico says:

    Bugger, sorry Ra, I forgot to answer that question…

    Clichy… Clichy and Clichy 😉

  28. A says:

    Denilson is a different type of player to Lansbury though….

    I’d certainly like to see him retained in the squad this season, and rotated in the “Diaby role” as such.

    Ayling had one really good season, but prior to that never looked like he had a chance of making it, and even then I never thought he would. Simpson was never going to be good enough to make it either….

    The problem is players who aren’t very good being known about by fans nowadays, and they have one good game or do one good thing, and the fans decide they’re the best thing since sliced bread, when in actual fact they’d never be good enough.

    If players are up to it, English or otherwise, Wenger tries to get them through, but unfortunately most aren’t in the end!

    He persists more with English players who won’t make it than foreigners too, how on earth are Randall, Simpson still at the club, how long was Justin Hoyte retained etc, when it was obvious they’d never make it from an early age

  29. rico says:

    I think the other would have been Senderos, however…..

  30. Red Arse says:

    Thanks Rico,

    I had in mind, the plight of English kids coming thru the Arsenal system over recent years, in the light of what has happened to England in the World Cup.

    It is probably also a reflection on other clubs youth set ups too, but I don’t give a stuff about them! 🙂

  31. rico says:

    A, I think you are generalising in your view about fans, some actually do watch the reserves/youth on afc.com. Also we all have different views on different players.

    I would sell Denilson and Diaby, others wouldn’t, doesn’t make me or them right.

    How will we ever know if Jay Simpson would have been good enough? If he had been given a chance in this side that creates so many chances he may have slotted many many goals home??

    As for Lansbury’s position, I know its differnt to that of Denilson, please give me a little credit. My point was, wenger persists with crap players!!

  32. Red Arse says:

    Rico, i think Clichy is French, French, French! 😉

    A, you have made my case in perhaps a different way. There are lots who popped into the squad or team and then swiftly popped off, so to speak.

  33. rico says:


    Wenger doesn’t often give the english kids a chance, gibbs has been the exception, but i dont think he is miles better in his posiytion than Wilshere is in his, yet the latter gets loaned out??

    We had all the injury problems up front, why didnt he call Simpson back, or play Freeman? Yes Freeman is young, but like i keep saying, so was Rooney and Owen when they started…

  34. rico says:

    Haha RA, thats my answer, none 🙂 🙂

  35. Millz says:

    It’s not wengers fault that the English kids aren’t good enough to make it with arsenal. They’re good but we need the best and only the best if we’re to succeed at being the best club in the country. Look at manure, how many English kids have come through their youth system recently. None. In fact there’s only 1 British kid and that’s Gibson.

    Fact is, to have 3 or 4 english kids that are good enough every 5 or 6 years is a hell of an achievement in my eyes. If city, pool, chelski, and manure do the same then we’ll have 15 to 20 top notch enlgglish players every 5 years. To expect anything more is absurd.

  36. Red Arse says:


    I am still waiting with bated breath for someone to give me even one name.

    In reply to A it is true that many of us hear a name of a new kid and soon boost him up to being an immense talent. But that’s because we are all desperate to find our own English Messi, Rodwell, Rooney etc.

    I am really convinced Jack and Keiron will do that in the near future, but again the operative word id “future”.

    I have been a regular for many years, at Barnett or watching Arsenal TV. The youth team games can be brilliant to watch. Now Kroenke has taken control of Arsenal TV online, I don’t see them so much. But over the years I have seen some great looking prospects emerge, and then the next crop of schoolboys comes thru and the 17/18 year old professionals are shuttled off the conveyor belt and disappear. 😦

  37. rico says:

    There isn’t anyone is there RA??

  38. Red Arse says:


    I do not profess to know a lot about the league set ups in Germany and Spain, but both countries allow their 2nd teams to play professional football in lower leagues.

    I think this has been the way forward for some of the German and Spanish players now in the WC. Why don’t the FA or Football league allow this in England? It would enable gifted players to develop and the dross to be weeded out in a more structured way.

    There are simply too few youth and Reserve team games for the large number of kids we have on the books. Some go for weeks without ever getting a game. I had better not get started on that subject because I know the answer lies in too much financial self interest from lower league clubs.

  39. K-TR7 says:

    Morning all.interesting choice of topic RA.Capello has said he is looking at gibbs,wilshere and theo for euro qualifiers…

  40. rico says:


    I think i heard/read that somewhere before, but you know the stiffies in england would say no – they would say that would mean other clubs would/could have to make way or no, becuase it would mean playing more games as the leagues fixtures would increase..

    Already England are using the excuse of being tired for the defeat to Germany, but like you pointed out yesterday, and Sky confirmed you were right, the German players had played more games.

    The trouble with this country is we are to frightened to apply changes, when changes are so clearly required for the country to progress. I don;t think this applies only to football either..

  41. Red Arse says:

    Hi Millz,

    You are pushing on an open door. Where in the article did I say anything about that?

    If you don’t read the article properly, please have a look in the mirror and then think “absurd”.

    Read this carefully!!! Which English kid over the seasons from 2003 to date has become a first team or a first team regular from our youth team set up?

    Give me just one name. 5 or 6? What are you on?

  42. rico says:

    Morning KTR7, hence the photos at the bottom 🙂

  43. K-TR7 says:

    RA its true what you’re saying.Barca have a barca B team in the lower division.its recent graduates are busquets and pedro.others are thiago alcantara,jonathan dos santos,muniesa,Gai Assulin…who are now involved with the first team.Guardiola was their coach and he himself is a graduate.Barca and spain are reaping the rewards and i’m sure aw would take up an opportunity like that.problem is the FA care more about money than youth development…

  44. rico says:

    Millz – Gibbs would have been too young, as RA says, please read the article before leaving what appears to be a unjustified comment…

    Folk who write posts at least deserve the bloggers to read it before commenting – no-ones says you to agree with it, thats why its there….

  45. Red Arse says:

    Hi KT,

    The questioned I posted is rhetorical, and I wish it wasn’t.

    The big hope for the future lieas with our current crop, not including Gibbsy and Jack.

    I named some in the article but there are others. I just hope it doesn’t go all Pete Tong for them, as it did for the previous youth team kids. 🙂

  46. rico says:

    KTR7, The FA should stop changing the manager every time the team gets beaten, all its doing is papering over the huge cracks in the set up.

    If they get the right man, which I think Capello could be, stop paying out compensation to those they sack, they could put the money into development.

    Look at how much Steve McClaren got paid off, was it 6M or near as…

  47. Millz says:

    Red arse:

    it’s taken AW a long time to get the club set up from top to bottom. After we sold le sulk we invested the cash into the youth set up. Then we stuck a load of 8 year olds and up in that set up. So only now are we beginning to get the kids through that are products of it from start to finish. So yeah, we haven’t had any yet, but in the next season or 2 you’ll start to see it all pay off.

    Besides, how can wenger be accused of not bringing English players through. What young English player is fergie bringing through? Or for that matter any top club right now. Name some youth players at the other top 3 clubs that are established with them.

  48. Red Arse says:

    Thanks KT,

    That is excellent detail. it shows that however brilliant the Prof is with his systems ans style of play, there are barriers to our youngsters coming thru.

    Therefore Arsene has a justified reputation for revolutionising football management in this country, and I think he is the best, we do not yet produce youngsters that the youth tean set up deserves.

    Perhaps Jack and Gibbs are the first of many! I hope so. 🙂

  49. rico says:


    Where is it written than any one of us blames wenger for the state of english football???

  50. rico says:

    Another who i really liked and watched a lot on Setanta when afc had their tv channel was Frimpong. Sadly though he has since chosen to represent his native country having played for england…. can’t blame him though…

  51. Red Arse says:

    Hi Millz

    We appear to be in agreement. I have consistently said in my posts and in the article that there is a wonderful crop coming thru, and I have high hopes for them.

    I also said I was not criticising Arsene for whom I have the highest regard, I was trying to look at the reasons for the mismatch between his reputation for producing great youth teams and lack of players advancing to the first team squad.

    As for Manure and the rest, I could not give a tuppenny ****. 🙂

  52. rico says:

    Freeman will make it RA, he was in our CL squad last year, hopefully not just because of injuries. I think we will see him in the CC..

  53. rico says:

    Thing is,

    which english youth/reserve players has wenger bought..

    which did he inherit…

  54. Red Arse says:


    I have a list in my head of the kids who I think will make it.

    One in particular is Kyle Bartley, when he beefs up. But I am worried that he might go out on loan and disappear like many before him.

  55. Red Arse says:


    I have to buzz off for a while.

    I sent you an email last night, if you have not read it, ignore the last para! 🙂 What a drama queen I am when I have had a glass or two, or three! 😉

  56. rico says:

    See you later RA, I’ll go check my emails now 😉

  57. Millz says:


    Okay, my mistake. Probably listened to too much press today talking about the lack of English youth we have and got a bit mixed up by it.

    All I’ve been hearing on arsenal blogs over the last 5 or 6 months is, well, basically anti-arsenal and anti-wenger and to be honest I’m sick of it. Whilst I understand your point about not fully understanding why wenger has this enig
    ma about him when it comes to youth, I think to question the youth players we’ve had, or rather not had, is wrong. I predicted back at the beginning that it would take 10 years before we really start seeing anyone with top top talent come through. But then after that it will become more of a conveyor belt. I’ve not been proved right yet, but I think I’m half way there because jack is the first pure blooded youth player that will come through and it’s looking more and more likely more will start to follow.

  58. K-TR7 says:

    I think aw is doing the best he can RA considering how poor the development of kids in England is.for example in Germany’s third goal barry was unable to trap the ball which is something he ought to have learnt when he was 8yrs old.AW has revolutionised footy and i think the true fruits will start to bear.on the youth players i don’t rate JET highly,Freeman i don’t know much about but i rate henderson,landsbury and bartley very highly.

  59. rico says:

    Millz – good on you, we are not anti wenger here, nor are we ever anti-arsenal

    we are anti scrooge, anti lacak of top class players and when its great we shout from the roof tops, when its crap we shout just a loud with critism 🙂

  60. rico says:

    KT, I was so upset for Henri ( 🙂 ) when he caught GF, but he has shown good old fashion guts and determination to come back – I am desperate to see him in the first team squad this season, it was he and Merida for me, now its just Lansbury 😦

    I think Freeman will play in the CC and Sunu, both have it, just whether or not they can build on it..

  61. jabberwocky says:

    red arse…i dont think that you understand that the ‘youth system’ is not purely about producing 11 first teamers, but is also a business model. by bringing through loads of young players and training them, we are then in a position to choose the ones that are the best, when they come along, and the ones who dont we sell on to championship or mid-table prem sides with huge sell-on clauses included in any business. therefore by producing lots of players that we then sell for 1-2 mill, some of whom go on to command huge transfer fees (ie bentley where we got about 8 mill from his transfer to tottenham, diarra, etc) we are then producing revenue which can go into sustaining the academy and supplementing the first team. therefore if good enough players are produced then we get to keep them, if they arent then we sell for a massive profit (considering that small youth team wages are the only financial input up until this point). therefore reviewing the success of youth set up is not as clear cut as adding the amount of first teamers. in the squad.

    also, as mentioned above, the current crop of youngsters have been playing wengerball since age 8-9 and have gone through the academy at every stage and therefore are more technically adept than their predecessors. sidwell, bentley, etc were all good but they just werent good enough, and did not have the arsenal way ingrained in the way they played, and thus they were moved on. i would therefore await the outcomes of this current crop before questioning the success of the youth system.

    and finally, compared to barcelona, etc, who have the whole of catalonia and beyond to pick up young players from, we are only allowed to recruit kids that live within 2 hours commute from london colney. being in london, this means we are competing against the likes of chelsea, west ham, spuds, charlton, qpr, just to name a few, for the good young players and therefore will never have as much of an abundance of home grown talent as the likes of barcelona can create. this is why hopefully we’ll be able to bring through quite a few english players, like JW, JET, Gibbs etc, but that we also supplement them with foreign youth because our scope for recruitment is limited.

    and lastly, i think it is unrealistic to expect that there be an overabundance of youth players in the first team so soon. we are never going to have a new homegrown team every couple of years…each player that establishes himself at around 20-22 will then have a stretc in the team thus blocking the progress of other youngsters until he gets too old or is sold in. therefore the integration of young players is a slow slow process, and the fact that wenger jumped the gun and has had it in place for 9 years or whatever means we are well ahead of anyone else in the country. financial situation as it stands, other teams will be emulating us, but will not be reaping the benefits for another 5-10 years. so yes, hold your criticism until we know whether it has failed or not.

  62. K-TR7 says:

    Palermo have accepted spuds bid for kjær and edison!…

  63. Erick says:

    Howdy good people hope all is good Nice one RA and I think Aw should start trusting the young gunz a little more and thats means Jack W should not go on loan 🙂

  64. rico says:

    blimey, they don’t muck about, they must be selling too then KTR7

  65. rico says:

    Kjear is quite good isn’t he?? 😦

  66. rico says:

    Hi Erick

    I think that those on loan last season could feature this season, with the next crop coming through going on loan..

  67. Erick says:

    Just saw that K-tr7 are we in trouble if I may ask

  68. Erick says:

    Rico we need to give them a chance especially the talented ones Aw has to change his treatment of Vela especially

  69. SD-London says:

    I think everybody has forgot that Arsenal has a standard and that standard has to be maintained.

    If these youngsters have not reached the standard that is required by Wenger to play for the Arsenal first team, they will not be promoted to the first team.

    As for Bentley , he just made a hastily wrong carrier decision by moving before time. He clearly has talent.

    If he had stayed in Arsenal , he will probably be in the World cup team right with a major role to play.

    I think Wenger’s Academy is about top class and patience and they can’t all make it to the Arsenal first team.

  70. rico says:


    They are replacements for Pavleychenko and Woodgate no doubt, Pav wants out and Woodgate and King are crocked..


    Vela – not sure what to make of his future with us really .. sadly

  71. rico says:

    Hi SD, Bentley had a bit of attitude too, he was impatient, i can see ‘Arry selling him this summer. I think you are right about him and had he stayed, but he thought he was the next David Beckham. He just couldn’t stay at the club that would have made sure of that…

  72. rico says:

    Kjear’s agent has denied the offer from spurs…

    me thinks he is waiting for a better offer from the mancs, either of them…

  73. K-TR7 says:

    Kjær is a good cb especially when bringing out of defence but in defence he has alot to learn…

  74. rico says:

    Nice have reportedly rejected an offer from West Ham for forward Loic Remy, with the striker issuing a come and get me plea to Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger. Remy, dubbed the “New Henry” is a confirmed target of Arsenal boss Wenger and is on the Frenchman’s summer shortlist, however the new Hammer’s boss Avram Grant is eager to sign the highly rated forward to spearhead his new Boleyn Ground attack.

  75. Red Arse says:

    Hi Millz no probs. I know where you are coming from. I have had enough of the British press too!

    This site is upbeat, out and out Arsenal! 🙂 Not keen on unthoughtful crticiism of Arsene or the team. But we do have differing opinions on individual players. (O.K. I admit I can’t stand Denilson) 🙂 )

    We don’t expect every one to agree with everything, how boring would that be? You and others like you are very welcome to come and say your piece. (I am not part of the site management, I am just like you, a poster!)

    All I was trying to do was stimulate a discussion about the team I love, Arsenal, and to hear what others think.

    The future of the club is with the youth set up and I think there are so many good kids coming thru, not a full team, that’s silly, not even 3 players per year, but as Arsene says 1 youth team player per year would be like winning the lottery.

    The Article was making the point that none have come thru into the current first team since 2003 and wondering why?

    The posts from others have put forward their views, many of which I agree with.

    Arsenal for ever!!! 🙂

  76. rico says:

    RA, nice one 🙂

  77. rico says:

    Koscienly’s in then, now we need one more CH,

    who do we want??

    I’m going with Cahill…

  78. Erick says:

    RA spot on seems the date went well and Aw is not eager to get a striker nice might as well sell him to other clubs Rico ‘arry for England 🙂 🙂

  79. rico says:

    😆 Erick, we English want them to getter better, not worse under a fraudster…. 😉

  80. Erick says:

    Rico I knew you that would stir you up Rico is Koscielny in .com 🙂

  81. Red Arse says:

    Hi Jabberwocky

    I liked your post and it does raise an interesting viewpoint.

    Sadly, I disagreed with two areas. Firstly, if you tell an educated man with a Masters Degree and 2 professional qualifications that he is incapable of understanding the Arsenal youth team set up, that’s abig call, my friend.

    Secondly, why do you ask me to hold my criticism? What criticism would that be then?

    The article starts by saying I was not attemptong to disrespect Arsene. I said I was trying to understand the logical conclusion of the programme, with some facts thrown in. I finish by asking for your views.

    I will throw my hands up if I have mis-stated someting or if you disagree with an opinion, but it’s a little difficult to argue with you over something I did not say. 🙂

  82. Stroller says:

    Young players will all eventually find their level in the game, be that with Arsenal, elsewhere the premiership or in the lower divisions. I don’t think that Arsene’s selection decisions for the first team has much to do with it, especially with the loan deals which are now commonplace.

  83. Erick says:

    Red Arse spot on again seems your masters are working for you 🙂

  84. Red Arse says:

    Hi Erick,

    How’s it going? Are you still doing your exams?

  85. jabberwocky says:

    au contraire red arse, i wasn’t arguing or making an attack on your views. however from the title, ‘wenger unfair to the youth, how can that be?’ and then questioning why no ‘youth team’ players have broken into the first team squad since 2003 is implying that something is wrong, even if you do skirt around from actually stating that. therefore when i asked you to hold back on your criticism, i meant the criticism which you were implying. again this isnt a personal attack or the usual (boring) partisan-like arsenal fan discussion where one of us is an AKB and the other a doomer, however the criticsm which was implied is what i was addressing and disagreeing with. you state you want debate and so i’m providing my 2 pence.

    therefore, based upon the implication from your article that something was wrong, i counter and state that the youth system has been extremely effective as we have made tens of millions profit from it, for as i stated the youth system is a revenue-generating scheme as well as a player-generating scheme. no need to get defensive and start listing qualifications when i address a point that you havent addressed. i’m not accusing you of not having the capacity for understanding what i’m saying, however the angle at which you approached this question seemed to have not taken into consideration this point when assessing the success or lack thereof of the youth system.

    also, for someone with a masters and numerous professional qualifications, i would expect that you be able to spell ‘actuality’, ‘Wilshere’ and ‘through’ correctly 😉

  86. Red Arse says:

    Hi Stroller

    You are right, of course, they will find their level eventually.

    Arsene has been in a financial strait jacket for some time, so if he has a star coming thru the youth set up that helps the finances, and will have an impact on the first team. Jack and Keiron?

    The knock on is that he will be able to spend money on areas of the team that need improving, without spreading the dosh ever more thinly.

  87. rico says:

    jabberwocky, lets not turn this into a spell check, its not Countdown, keep it respectful, please…. 🙂

  88. rico says:

    RA, I didn’t know you were such a clever old git 😉 😉

  89. Red Arse says:

    Oh Jabberwocky,

    For someone as defensive as you are to accuse another person of being defensive is very Quixotic.

    Actualite is a borrowed French word which has an e grave on the end. Unfortunately I couldn’t be bothered to dig up the fench alphabet on my machine. Well spotted, I think.

    The question mark at the end of the title line is an accepted form of inviting comment to a prestated position. Well blow me down it is a Question. well I never. 🙂

    For someone who says he is not making a personal attack on me, you are singularly failing. And I am distraught that you find my two finger typing so lacking and causing spelling errors. Tut, tut. Ah well we can’t have everything.

    I will not enter into any further chat with you, as I am only interested in Arsenal matters and not this nonsense.

  90. Erick says:

    RA exams nop just started the semester assignments are killing me hope you can help me knowing your are a clever lad 🙂

  91. SD-London says:

    Do we really need Cole and do you see Wenger actuallu buying him ?

  92. rico says:

    SD, thats just it about Cole, would Cole not hinder Wilshere??

  93. SD-London says:

    I think Wilshire will be on the bench and probably go on loan again in January if we don’t make it in the Carling cup.

    Most importantly, Cole wants to play in the middle which will only happen if Fabregas leaves and i don’t think Nasri will be happy if he is asked to play on the right or left.

    The Cole interest baffles me , it is unlike Wenger.

  94. Red Arse says:

    Rico “clever, old git”?

    The only word that applies is the last one! 😉

    Especially don’t tell Jabber I made yet another mistake, it’s an “e acute” not an “e grave”, do you think he will notice.

    Jabber’s Arsenal comments were good and it is all about Arsenal here. Hopefully we can put all this behind us and chat about Arsenal again. What do you say Jabber? 🙂

  95. rico says:

    SD, If Cesc goes and wenger doesn’t spend, for me Nasri has to fill the gap…. If he fails to raise his game both home and away, where does he really fit in in this side??

    He is so in and out of games, i just don’t get it..

    Cole + Free = Wenger 🙂

  96. SD-London says:

    Wao guys chill out on the war or words.Thanks Red Arse for giving us an article this morning.

    The rest (comments) should be a comment 🙂

  97. rico says:

    Good move RA, Come on Jabber 🙂

    There was thinking you were ancient RA 😉

  98. Red Arse says:

    Stick at it Erick, it will pay off in the end! 🙂

    I read on NewsNow that Arsenal will have to sell someone if they want to sign Cole. I didn’t understand the logic of that but didn’t pursue the article. Anyone else read it and know what the reason for selling was supposed to be?

    SD, I am in your camp. Given a choice between Cole (finished product) and Wilshire (one of our own) I would always go for Wilshire, though others probably would not agree.

  99. SD-London says:

    I agree Rico , Nasri is not a certainty to fill up the void. He had chances in the last season and he wasn’t consistent enough.

    We have all seen what a weak midfield or visionless midfield can do to a world cup team (England)

  100. jabberwocky says:

    the comments about the spelling etc were made in good humour and not trying to constitute a personal attack.

    my initial comments still stand, as i think project youth has been a success financially, and now we are on the cusp of it providing real results. the next world cup may be too soon for some players, but i am certain that come 2018 that arsenal players (or former arsenal players as it may be) will form the spine of the national team and we will be reaping the rewards on and off the pitch. basically, no players have made it since 2003 because they havent been good enough. now the signs are there that the players just might be good enough. i dont think there is anything wrong with our system as it stands, especially regarding having foreign talent in the system, as i dont care (and to clarify, i’m not accusing you of holding this stance either ra) what passport someone has got, i only care about how good they are. therefore at the moment the likes of denilson (wont get into an argument about that one, i think he’s class but the denilson debate is tired and old and only time will tell who is right), diaby, fabregas etc are the only ones who have made it. however when english talent like wilshere comes through and is good enough to usurp foreign talent, then they will be welcome into the team. at this point, they will also be light years ahead of english talent from other teams and will walk into the national set up

  101. Red Arse says:


    I could not agree more! 🙂

    I can’t tell you how much I want Arsenal to provide the basis of a good England team, because that will mean a brilliant Arsenal team.

    At the mo’ I don’t really give a stuff about the England team with so many t***ers in it.

    Sorry for being a tad sniffy earlier, I can see you are a true Gooner! 😉

  102. jabberwocky says:

    and sorry for being pedantic, even if twas meant in jest. hard not to be defensive on arsenal blogosphere as opinion is so polarised and idiots have a knack of shouting loudest and disrupting debate. but yes, the future is red and white and the collective patience will pay off

  103. Red Arse says:


    Harking back to a previous post about rumours lifting and then dashing your hopes, there are three headlines on Newsnow, which gave me a good feeling, Kjaer agent denies Spurs interest, and Arsenal are interested; then Balottelli happy with Arsenal interest; and then Loic Remy rejects Fulham bid and wants to join Arsenal!

    In truth, though I think, like you, that Kjaer will join Citeh or Manure. Ballottelli (too many somethings?) will join Chelski or Citeh, and Wenger won’t want Remy. 😦

  104. rico says:

    RA – I can’t see that we have to sell to get Cole, we have lost Gallas who was on a similar wage to which Cole would ask…

    SD – If we still had Gilberto we would be better, he and Song could be the defensive side with Eastmond coming through, Cesc, Nasri, Ramsey, Lansbury, being the creative…

    Not a Denilson in sight 🙂

  105. Red Arse says:


    Are you out there? I would like to chat to you about my disrupted sleep last night, caused by your intriguing post yesterday! 🙂

    Oliver, where are you sir? I dug up my correspondence and can tell you where I didn’t get my bat and mit from. 🙂

  106. Red Arse says:

    Jabberwocky, your post 12:57, well said! 🙂

  107. rico says:

    RA – its back to rumour, hope and disapointment, i just don’t believe any anymore, that way I seldom get disapointed 🙂 🙂

  108. mikeB says:


    The last time I disrupted someone’s sleep, my wife found out and hasn’t let me out of the house since.

  109. rico says:

    Afternoon mikeB, I wouldn’t have let you back in the house 😆

  110. mikeB says:

    Hi Rico,

  111. oliver says:

    ‘morning RA…Interesting take. I would say that not every youth player is earmarked to make the first team. I think we bring youth players onboard with the expectation that some will eventually become first team regulars, and some will be sold on for profit. I seem to remember something along these lines for the club’s operating model. The exposure these youngsters get in the cup matches, and even meaningless (i.e. when groups have already been decided) CL ties puts some of them in the proverbial shop window and generates interest. Note that I am not saying I entirely agree with this policy, but I think this is close to what the club thinks when playing some of these younger players. I get your point about some of the younger players being brought from other youth systems, but if we put them in ours, surely we contribute to their development: Ramsey and Wilshere come to mind here. I agree that we are on the cusp of seeing some of these younger players make the breakthrough to regular first-team action. I am not sure how many, but I expect we will see some in the next season or two.

  112. mikeB says:

    Hi Rico,
    don’t know what happened with the last, went off too early I guess… that’s right, I’ll set em up and you knock em down.

    Good afternoon anyway.

  113. oliver says:

    how ironic is it that capello does not take theo to the world cup, yet as he and his team return to england in failure, he is now talking about calling wilshere and gibbs up to the senior team? i hope arsene resists this – like theo, they are young and have plenty of time for england later. let them develop with arsenal, make the first team, and then we will consider england. i would rather not have a “too much too soon” case with them.

  114. Red Arse says:

    Having asked to speak to both Oliver and MikeB I have had a call and need to buzz off for an hour or so.

    If you are around then M I will explain all.

    Oliver, I dug out my letter which was very funny (?) says me, but inexplicably I never sent it! It was Modells (Mo’s) about 2 blocks from Grand Central station, although as you know they are all over the place. Nice memories! 🙂

  115. rico says:

    Hi oliver and Avashnee…

    We have plenty of competition amoungst the youth/reserves, what we don’t have though is like for like competition and that goes back to strength and/in depth –

    Look at last season

    TV = Silvestre
    Gallas = Sol (not so bad)
    Song = Denilson, Eastmond
    Almunia = Flapianski

    To me they are not competition, they are ‘make up the numbers’ 😦

  116. rico says:

    oliver, i think the talk about wilshere and gibbs is inevitable, by the time the next wc comes along they will be the new england…

    the exprienced players will include theo by then too..

  117. SD-London says:

    Looking at the way Gilberto played yesterday and rumours that he is Dunga’s favourite playe r(he plays exactly the way Dunga wants them to play)

    Weger sold him 3 years ago and he still mad the favourite team to win the World cup.
    I questioned Wenger’s decision making yesterday and vision a times.

    Gilberto played with so much disciplined the commentators could not stop talking about him, he sniffed out all potential dangers and never made a wrong pass.

    Imagine what Song could have learnt form him and imagine both of them covering Fabregas. Wenger missed that one didn’t he ?

  118. rico says:

    mikeB, i don’t get your last comment, am i being thick?

  119. rico says:

    SD, spot on…. i had my rant about that earlier too …

  120. oliver says:

    rico, i agree on wilshere, gibbs, and eastmond. i would just prefer them to concentrate making the arsenal first team before england’s first team. sven’s taking theo to 2006 wc made no sense, and i think it contributed to theo’s “stunted development” – i would hate for that mistake to be made with other arsenal players. if these players can just concentrate on becoming arsenal first-team regulars, england will take care of itself.

  121. SD-London says:

    Got To Make Spelling Corrections jabberwocky is reading :mrgreen:

    Looking at the way Gilberto played yesterday and rumours that he is Dunga’s favourite player(he plays exactly the way Dunga wants them to play)

    Then Wenger sold him 3 years ago and he still made the favourite team to win the World cup.
    I questioned Wenger’s decision making yesterday and vision a times.

    Gilberto played with so much discipline that the commentators could not stop talking about him, he sniffed out all potential dangers and never made a wrong pass.

    Imagine what Song could have learnt form him and imagine both of them covering Fabregas. Wenger missed that one didn’t he ?

  122. rico says:

    oliver, sorry, i dont think i put my comment very well, you are of course spot on about sorting their places in the arsenal team before any talk of england, but you know what the english media are like….

    as you say, if they cement thier club places, international football will be automatic…

  123. oliver says:

    sd, i also think arsene made a mistake with gilberto. in retrospect, he should never have lost his first team place to flamini, who may be remembered as a contract season wonder, for all he did before that season and at milan since. i thought arsene treated a loyal servant (gilberto) shabbily over the captaincy issue. unfortunately, arsene tends to put individual players interests over team interests on occasion. i remember arsene being quoted that he appointed gallas as captain in order to bring the best of out him – that one blew up in everyones faces!! his insistence in keeping fabianski in the firing line at the end of last season is another example of arsene focusing on what he felt was best for fabianski, but not necessarily best for the team. anyways, gilberto deserved better and we sure could use him in the arsenal squad now. he may struggle in the more demanding premiership, but his leadership and calming influence would have helped the team on many occasions last season.

  124. mikeB says:

    Hi Rico,
    Not in the least… I started to say hi, but for some reason sent the greeting too soon, before I had added the text.

    The second message was just my puerile attempt at pre-empting a double-entendre.
    Were I you, I’d forget it and return to more worthy matters.

    Have a good one

  125. SD-London says:

    Thanks Oliver, but did you see him yesterday? He was world class simply is activities released Kaka and Robinho to just run the midfield wild when they wish.

    Despite Valdes not really sure how to play in the midfield , Gilberto made him look good.

    Anytime the back four was under pressure(many times, the Chileans didn’t give up even at 3 goals down)Gilberto was there to clear the danger.

    I actually felt hurt and disappointed that we let him go and he would have being a fantastic captain and i am sure Toure would still be here and Fabregas will not think he is the biggest player in the club and wanting new challenge e.t.c :-C

  126. Red Arse says:

    MikeB, I am back,
    I was intrigued, yesterday, by your synopsis of a structured story line and your challenge to use creative skills to construct an Arsenal tale.

    So, I had a go! Easy peasy, lemon squeezy.

    Hmmm, I have a great club, Arsenal, I have a wonderful cast of postees to use as the characters,e.g. JJ and Wath as the ugly sisters, no wait, that’s another story, Rico as the heroine ably assisted by Avashnee, with Erick, SD, KT, and others fitting beautifully into the obvious characters. Then I have Oliver as the soothsayer, and MikeB to be the narrator with, of course, yours truly as the hero.

    After 2 minutes of feverish writing, my master piece, akin to Lord of the Rings, was finished.

    But something terrible happened.

    I found I couldn’t send it to Rico. “No you can’t havesss it; Itssss all mine; got to keepssss it from the evil Spudssss” these were the thoughts racing thru my head.

    I went to bed and tossed and turned all night (now, now Wath) and woke with a start, realising I wasn’t the hero at all, I was the flaming Gooner Gollum!

    Thanks Mike, I think you owe me a pint, and some royalties! 🙂

  127. SD-London says:

    Red Arse , you are ????????


  128. SD-London says:


  129. Red Arse says:

    SD, are you suggesting I am bonkers? You are probably right! 😉

  130. oliver says:

    sd, i thought gilberto looked tremendous yesterday! that said, i think was saw evidence of a natural decline in skills during his last season in the premiership. if he were to return to the prem – either with arsenal or another club – i think he would find it much more difficult to influence a game like he did yesterday. that said, he brings so many other good qualities, i would love to have him back! i think most of us agree that gallas was a poor captain and that was one decision arsene got badly wrong – a decision that had negative consequences in several areas…

  131. rico says:

    🙂 mike

    SD, I watched him yesterday and just sat wondering how we let him go, why we let him go, why oh why oh why…

    i know some will say because we had flamini and after gilberto returned fron the fed cup he was tired etc etc, but the man is still able to play at the highest level and where is flamini now…

  132. mikeB says:

    You are a strange and disturbing creature R.A.

    Thanks to you, the ubiquitous myth of the hero will never again serve as a pattern for life, and life will never again serve as a reflection of art.

    Keep dreaming; I find it helps

  133. Red Arse says:

    Yesss Master Mike!

  134. oliver says:

    rico, i think the captaincy issue was a big factor in gilberto’s eventual departure as well. unless gilberto is exaggrating/lying – and i do not think he is – he found that gallas had been appointed captain for our second season in emirates via the media. apparently arsene did not tell him personally. i think gilberto should have been given the armband ahead of thierry, not just gallas. i’ll say it again: a shabby way to treat a loyal guy who always put the team ahead of himself!

  135. SD-London says:

    The way you know who was hardworking the most is to count the number of times the player Cam was on Gilberto and I lost count.

    Oliver, you might ague about his ability and skill but i say he has maintained his position in the Brazilian team which is the best team in the world right now .

    Yesterday was played with a very high tempo because the Chileans were unbelievably still going for it to the last minute (i respect them) It was more than Premier league speed yesterday and Gilberto coped very well.

    Trust me Wenger really messed up, losing Henry wasn’t bad at all. It was losing a technically gifted and experienced DM that messed our subsequent seasons up.

    The two Centre Backs could not cope with the pressure coming from the midfield (evidence – No. of goals conceded last season)

  136. Red Arse says:

    On the face of it Oliver, Gilberto was badly treated in some ways.

    What may need to be taken into account though, is that Gallas although an ace CB was also allegedly a disruptive peersonality, and giving him the captaincy was to try and ensure he was in the tent pissing out, rather than outside pissing in.

    Right or wrong, Arsene sacrificed Gilberto’s interests in favour of the team’s.

  137. W.A.T.H says:

    RA………….. i don’t really want to know what you did all night long but I think you had far to much wine….!.

    I’m an ugly sister am i….. hmmmmm I shall tell my cousin Mr Keown you think us ugly….!.

    As for all this England youth Arsenal youth the point is the media has spent a decade crucifying Arsenal and Wenger for killing englisg players and now god forbid we may be the savious of english football…! Hypocrisy at its best and as usual sums up the media bullshit for what it is..!. First and foremost I want the Arsenal youth to be successful at Arsenal and then my worry would be they get ruined playing for england under an FA run set up that is so stuck up their own arses all they do is blame the manager and everyone else but themselves for their own failings in structure and grass roots set up.

  138. Red Arse says:

    I believe you are right SD.

    It would not have been so bad if Arsene had bought a replacement of a similar quality, but we keep on saying the same thing over the last 3 or 4 seasons. So instead we had Denilson. Perhaps too big a responsibility too soon for him, with disastrous results.

  139. rico says:

    oliver, i can’t see Gilberto lying either, he never really moaned did he, always the coold calm player, never in the press, never opening his mouth about the club, he was and will always be a true gent.

    imho, Henry was given the armband to keep him, same with gallas and after his outburst cesc – none of them should have been given the armband inho, it should have been gilberto over all of them

    if cesc goes it has to be between robin and tv, as much as tv is possibly the better leader, i would give it to our true mr arsenal, RVP…

  140. rico says:

    SD, not sure if you are in the uk and whether you heard the english commentators last night, but gilberto was certainly getting high praise from them….

    deserved too ..

  141. oliver says:

    sd, i am not sure brazil is the best team in the world – perhaps at the cup. my point about gilberto is that at his age, he would not be able to stamp his influence on faster and more physical premiership games as is able to in world cup games with brazil. i agree that he still has plenty to offer and i wish he never left arsenal!

    ra, i see this the opposite from you. everyone knew gallas was a loose cannon from his time at marseille and chelsea. giving him the armband to bring the best out of him was, in my opinion, sacficing the team interests for gallas’. i think gilberto’s interests were more in line with the teams’ and he would have been a massively better captain than gallas. the team already seemed comfortable with him during the frequent occasions he deputized for thierry during the first emirates season. making gallas captain served gallas interests – not the teams – and i think events bear this out.

  142. Red Arse says:

    Hi Wath,

    You won’t get much of an argument there.

    Martin and I are great mates, he married my cousin a few years back, so maybe we are related? 🙂

  143. rico says:

    Well said WATH…..

    the media stink here in the uk…..

  144. jabberwocky says:

    i disagree with some of the assertions above.

    1.) Gallas was a bad captain.

    Don’t get me wrong, I dont think he was the best captain we’ve ever had, not by a long shot. However, everyone seems to forget that under his captaincy we played the best football we have played since 03/04 until that fateful birmingham game. we were scoring goals for fun, were in first place for about 4 months in a row and were all set to end our drought. yes the implosion and the brum game meltdown were far from ideal, but I dont think he was a bad captain or that wenger got the call wrong. i know you say gilberto should have been skipper(talk about gilberto in a minute), but as he wasnt in the starting 11 that wasnt possible. at that point in time, who else do you think had the experience and will to win to assume the captaincy? cesc was too young, same for RvP. toure was a shadow of the player he used to be and was out for the majority of the season. i do not accept this conventional wisdom that gallas was a bad captain, and i think pointing the finger at him as an individual for our meltdown and our title challenge collapsing is unfair. there were failings within the whole team and gallas alone is not culpable.

    2.) Should not have sold Gilberto.

    I agree, we should not have sold him, as his presence would have been invaluable. however even if we had kept him, i doubt he would have been in our starting 11, as flamini was amazing that season. yes we struggled the following season in that position, but the result is that we now have song who has developed(the hard way) into one of the finest defensive midfielders in the country. i think gilberto was on the decline and would have found pace of prem league increasingly difficult to deal with. the world cup is not the biggest stage (well…it is in terms of exposure, fame etc, but not in quality of football. if arsenal, man utd or chelsea competed in the world cup they would wipe the floor with every team that they’d play). we suffered from gilberto leaving the team at the same time as flamini & diarra, but now we have song. i would rather go through 1 difficult season and then be presented with a player who is one of best in his position and in his early 20s, than take the short-term view of keeping a player in his 30s on to avoid one difficult season, if you get my meaning.

    3. Wenger puts players ahead of the team.

    I’m not arguing that Wenger is infallible, but i think that every decision he makes is for what he believes is best for the team. it may not end up that way but i am fully satisfied that the intent is always for the benefit of arsenal. fabianski at the end of last season? we’d lost all chance of winning anything, almunia had proven that he wasnt reliable, and fabianski, who is a good young keeper but has had his confidence shot, was thrown in in the hope that he would have a good game (all speculation obviously as i dont have private meetings with wenger) and gain confidence and therefore be ready for next season. obviously it backfired but i believe the intent there was to benefit AFC in any way possible.

    i’m sure i have more points but also have work to do!

  145. W.A.T.H says:

    Rico, thats your heart leading your head with that call….. TV for captain all day long….! Can’t lead from the front, Captain is always best from the back to see the game in front and be as constructive as possible and TV def also has the right temperement as well as the right attitude. You also don’t need an armband to be a leader…! RVP can lead from the front by example and also by staying fit….!

  146. rico says:

    Great news from Wimbledon…

    Venus Williams has been knocked out 🙂 🙂

  147. SD-London says:

    RVP all the way, before Real Madrid comes calling.


  148. rico says:

    WATH, it is my heart I know, but a girl is allowed to let her heart rule her head now and again….;)

  149. SD-London says:

    Oh My God Jabberwocky is bad.
    I am not reading that , no way .


  150. SD-London says:

    oops !i meant Jabberwocky is back

  151. Red Arse says:


    Spot on, I would have liked to have written that. 🙂

  152. SD-London says:

    No way not reading . Too long ;(

  153. W.A.T.H says:

    Jabber, some good points you make and your opinion is well put but some slants on that are contrary to how Wenger then tells us that we lack experience but can’t buy experience if it blunts the youth, how then and why then send players who should/could be playing for us even off the bench and yet persist with players who are lacking in comfidence and then perhaps ruin them for another six months, far to oftern his stubborness is his undoing. Denilson AW has tried to turn into a Flamini type which he clearly isn’t and wwe all can’t stand the fella BUT if allowed to play his own game would prob do a decent job as a squad player when needed. As 4 the goalies lets not even start on that one.

  154. W.A.T.H says:

    SD…………. Go get a beer fom the fridge and start to read 🙂 lol

  155. Red Arse says:

    Worth reading though SD. 🙂

    Could do with a couple more paras to make reading easier, perhaps.

  156. Suhail.TV says:

    Hello all..Every one is telling that Cesc, Denilson(??)Clichy,Ramsey and RVP was not from our academy. Sure they were not born in our academy but they grown through that and we polished them and made them look like what they are now..

    So its doing its duty well but the manager is not…

  157. Suhail.TV says:

    hello Red arse good post.. Wenger was unfair to youth and he is too much fair to youth these days… 😦

  158. oliver says:

    jabberwocky, good rebuttal and i do agree with some of your points, even if i don’t agree with your main premises. i specifically agree that it would have been virtually impossible to make gilberto captain during that season as he had indeed lost his place to flamini. and flamini had an excellent season – even if he did nothing before or since. but i still believe that gallas was a poor captain. the team played well early on, and we were unbeaten in the league until around christmas (2-1 reverse at middlesbrough was our first loss). but when things started getting tougher and we needed experience and calm leadership, i argue that gallas was found wanting. i do not argue that he is a fine defender, and he certainly leads by example with his play. he also scored some important goals while wearing the armband, specifically the stoppage time equalizer in the arsenal 2-2 man united. but i also sense he was uncomfortable in his role as captain of a younger team, and to me it was just not a good fit. i also maintain that wenger does put player interests ahead of team intersts in certain situations – i will qualify that by saying i imagine he does these things thinking they will work out the best for everyone, but there have been situations where i think if he had focused less on a certain individual (gallas and fabianski come to mind) things would have turned out better for the team as a whole.

    with all that, good post and great rebuttal to my points!

  159. Red Arse says:


    Don’t you think Arsene has previous in that respect?

    He tells us what fits in with the Board’s position about money being available one minute, and then contradicts that by saying he needs to sell one player a year to make ends meet the next.

  160. rico says:

    Guys, got to pop out for an hour…

    Hi STV… 🙂

  161. Red Arse says:

    Hi STV

    Thanks for the support. 🙂

  162. SD-London says:

    Fabianski really baffles me , the guy looked good when he first came and all of a sudden he just became really bad.

  163. W.A.T.H says:

    RA…………. As good as Wenger is he’s also the king of spin…..!. He telsl a lot of things based on perception of what people want to hear and then goes and does exactly what he wants to do anyway regardless of what the fans want and expect. He is mostly correct but as said his stubborness is his biggest weakness. I think what he has done the last few years is brilliant but his refusal to spend on the final bits for the jig-saw could see everything come tumbling down..!.

  164. Red Arse says:

    SD He did look good at first, but he hasn’t been helped by a bloody awful defence in front of him, though has he?

  165. oliver says:

    sd, our goalkeepers seem to have similar problems: decision making, and lack of penalty-area presence are two that spring to mind. a new gk coach can hopefully help our stable of ‘keepers with these issues. jabberwocky made some great points about fab at the end of last season – keeping him in the firing line to get the best out of him and build his confidence. unfortunately, i think the reality is that mistake after mistake shredded his confidence and there should have came a point where mannone (if fit for selection) was brought in. if he had come back into the team and performed well, perhaps we would have more options coming into this season. right now, we have only question marks at goalkeeper.

  166. Red Arse says:

    I hope you are wrong Wath, but I have a bad feeling that you could be right.

    It p’s me off that the Spuds are being linked with a number of class players, and if only 1 or 2 come off, that will be 1 or 2 more than us. 😦

  167. Suhail.TV says:

    HELLO WATH… Which Gk would be better to pick from SA ?

  168. jabberwocky says:

    hard to structure it with paras and stuff as all contained within this little box and so dont see it as a whole until i submit the comment. also having to do work every couple of sentences so lose track of how long have rambled on for.

    W.A.T.H. – Denilson, when you say ‘we all can’t stand’ who do you mean by ‘we’? i think he’s a fine player, and i’m an arsenal fan, so i’m guessing this ‘we’ cant be the arsenal fanbase? but as i said earlier, lets not get into a denilson debate and agree to disagree.

    Players react differently to pressure, and psychological concerns do have an effect on player’s confidence and ability to express themselves. therefore wenger’s stubborness could be based upon what he knows a player is capable of as opposed to how he actually plays in the limelight.

    furthermore, with regards to wages etc, with the financial straight-jacket that we’ve been operating with for last half decade, i think wenger has at all times tried to avoid having players on high wages peter out and retire. he has always seen to either release them or sell them off. therefore keeping gilberto, or any of the others on when they were not playing in the first 11 was counterproductive, as with each month that passed their resale value dropped. therefore having some of your highest earners warming your bench while you are struggling for cash would in wenger’s eyes be nonsensical.

    i think his persistance with youth and players like denilson etc is that they will eventually find their feet, while earning relatively low wages and then have the experience to go on. if however they fail, then they can be sold for a reasonable fee as they are still in their 20’s. however keeping a high earner on the bench with no hope of recouping a transfer fee should you wish to move them on is bad economics.

    i’m not saying the above system isn’t flawed, however thats how i see it (again all speculation). wenger is stubborn and bloody-minded, but i dont think he is irrational and lets things like sentimentality get in our way. i think he is almost too rational, and while certain actions have backfired, I do think every action is, in his eyes, for the best interest of the club.

  169. jabberwocky says:

    put that in your pipe and smoke it SD 😉

  170. SD-London says:

    About Wenger i agree he is the master of deals and probably does the best of deals and spins. This morning Man city was linked to Silva for £30mill and i thought this guys are stupid.

    If reports are correct, we have got a new defender for £8.5Mil and at £25000 per week .Only Wenger can do deals like that because i am sure even West Ham would probably offer him £40000 per week to start with ,then….

  171. jabberwocky says:

    sorry oliver…i spend so long waffling that by the time i post i’ve missed about 30 mins worth of comments.

    i agree that gallas has been better since not being captain, and that he wasnt a particularly good captain, but i dont like the scapegoating that occurred after our meltdown as while i dont think he excelled, i dont think that he failed either. saying that, i’m glad that cesc took over.


  172. SD-London says:

    j a b b e r w o c k y . . . . . . . !

  173. Red Arse says:


    Two things;

    1) Don’t get yourself into trouble at work.

    2) Wow, I don’t know how I got into cross purposes with you. Really well constructed post. Paras worked really well too. Get in touch with Rico and write an article! You would do well. 🙂

  174. W.A.T.H says:

    Jabber… the “we” is the royal “we” as in most of us on here regarding Denilson. We’ll def agree to disgree but my point regarding Wenger trying to make him something he’s not does him no favours and again seems to be one of Arsene’s traits that he always wants to make square tubes fit into round holes.

    We not at training day in day out we don’t see all what goes on but we also not blind when we see 90mins week in weekout (ok some are blin in criticism and in bias prasie)and Wengers comments sometimes are so over the top he does at times insult our intelligence with what we have just seen from cetain players. The team isn’t his personal experiment and far to often this past season that’s what it has resembled. As for high wages my concern relates to rewarding failure…! far to many of these young players have new contracts doubled their salaries and yet have not won a thing or even in the first team as regulars? how does that deal with ambition and hunger and desire…? far to many think they have “made it” purely by earning a huge salary and yet they still on the bench or in the reserves?. Not a way to create a winning mentality in my mind.

  175. W.A.T.H says:

    ST…….. how’s you..? All good I hope. A goalie from what we seen from SA is far to risky and if Chezny is the answer then that would explian us looking at an older keeper who has a few years left in him. If the ppl at the club don’t rate Chezny to come through and be number one then my choice would be Joe Hart all day long as he’s good going to get better and he’s a Gooner BUT doubt citeh would sell him and def not to us in a million years

  176. oliver says:

    jabber, there was definitely a collective responsibility for the late-season meltdown in 07-8. no way can we put that all on one person – i think others would like to pin the blame on arsene, but that ignores the role of the first eleven in this. gallas’ team-mates deserve blame for not following their captain’s lead. like him or not, he was the man with the armband and the other players should have respected that, and respected his authority. but i still think that he did not lead effectively. rightly or wrongly, he is the person people look to when there are on-pitch failures, and if his team-mates did not follow his lead, he also shares responsibility for not leading effectively. i do not think he is a bad guy, i just think he is not a natural, effective leader. i certainly can be mistaken on this, but that is how i view the issue. but let me be clear that i think it is unfair to pin the entire meltdown on him – his team mates share the responsibility for that.

  177. Red Arse says:


    You and Rico are great mates and (at the risk of being told to sling my hook, or worse) and I probably sound like her recruitment sergeant (unasked) but I honestly think you speak good sound sense that gells and is respected by a lot of us gooners, even if we don’t always agree.

    Give it a go. I would love to read something you feel needs to be discussed and debated. 🙂

  178. W.A.T.H says:

    RA………. Sling ur hook………. lol 😛

  179. mikeB says:

    Hi Oliver,

    By respecting Gallas as the man with the armband, do you mean, when he sat down in Birmingham on that dreadful day that everyone else who was still able to walk, should have sat down with him?

    Just kidding.

  180. Red Arse says:

    O.K. Wath, I won’t bother you with again. 🙂 Pity.

    Oliver and Jabber have it in them too in a different way. Well serves you all right if you have to read my twaddle again, because you don’t put something interesting in.

    I don’t know how Rico does it, day in day out.

  181. oliver says:

    mike, that seems to be the incident that everyone cites. if nothing else, i think that exposed gallas, and killed his credibility with us gooners, if not his team-mates. who knows what really happened in the dressing room, but we certainly have enough stories about gallas being a devisive influence, both during and after his spell as captain. i will give him credit for playing hard and (i believe) doing his best for the club after being relieved of the captaincy – i think many others would have demanded a transfer. by then, the damage had already been done.

  182. Red Arse says:

    No Mike,

    They should have picked up the poor old sod and carried him off by the ankles! Seemples …. 🙂

  183. oliver says:

    and mike, i get that you made the comment tongue-in-cheek. i know that, even if i address it as if it were serious!

  184. SD-London says:

    Gallas was a joker on that day.I was watching on the TV and even i was embarrassed

  185. Suhail.TV says:

    Japan’s play is good…

  186. Red Arse says:

    Well he’s gone now. And 90% think Cesc will also be gone, (I don’t) so who should be the next captain.

    Rico and others say RVP, I’m not too sure. Brilliant player but he does have a hair trigger temperament. Not too useful in pressure situations.

    TV looks to have the temperament and is in the best position to influence play Imho.

  187. mikeB says:

    On a more serious note about Gallas; it goes back to my point about managing; whether that be a corporation or a football team.
    Managing is about carrot and stick, yes, but it’s more about creating an environment in which others can succeed.
    That environment starts in the dressing room, and never was there a more devisive individual than Gallas; just ask KT
    As a defender, I admire him enormously; as a captain, not so much.

  188. SD-London says:

    Good point RED ARSE but RVP all the way

  189. W.A.T.H says:

    I think the one point that ppl miss regarding Gallas at Brum that day is that alot of his actions were due to the fact he was pissed off and upset at the result, I for one wish a lot more showed that much passion at drawing a match, granted the way he acted was a bit embarrassing BUT none the less it was his desire to win and the fact he was so upset we’d thrown away a two goal lead and been stitched up with a shit penalty decision that lead to his tantrum.

  190. SD-London says:

    None of the players came to pick him up in the Birmingham game . This showed us all that Gallas didn’t have a good relationship with the players .

    We all knew what happened next.

  191. oliver says:

    mike, i agree completely and that is why i do not think that gallas was a good captain. when the team were winning, everything was fine – remember how the pre-match huddles he used hold were praised? but when things became tough, he seemed unable to inspire his team-mates, finger-pointing started, and divisions appeared. again, i do not put this all on his shoulders, but greater responsibility comes with the armband. responsibility for good, and responsibility for bad. when things started to go sour, gallas the leader the leader was found wanting. i would argue that it affected his play too – remember that panicked penalty he gave away at old trafford? i think it was shortly after adebayor put us 1-0 with a handball goal!

  192. Red Arse says:

    I never understood the big deal about Gallas’ sit down at Brum.

    It was anger, disappointment, frustration. Different people have different ways of dealing with it.

    Would going off with a shrug, a smile a gentlemanly handshake have been better?

    Have we never seen other players collapsing on the pitch at the end of losing games, sometimes in tears.

    O.K. crap captain, but on that day he cared!

  193. oliver says:

    ra, he cared, but his actions were widely perceived as tantamount to giving up. as soon as the penalty was converted, our team should have pressed forward to try and get the goal back, regardless of the remaining time. he may have been angry and frustrated (we all were), but his body language spoke of defeat…head bowed, slumped on the pitch – and this before the final whistle blew!

  194. Suhail.TV says:

    And so the captain changed and new one came.. But same old story with little contrast.

  195. SD-London says:

    If i can digress a little bit ,
    This morning Capello was quoted listing players for the feature Walcott,Wilshere,Gibbs ,Adam J e.t.c.

    Was he trying to tell us the team he would have picked for the World cup if he had being allowed to pick freely in a coded form ?

  196. mikeB says:

    I think this is where our discussions, fun as they are, fall down.
    We can only see the attitudes on the pitch. We can’t see into the dressing room and consider all the player politics and cliques that form there.

    If there is one criticism I have of the maestro Wenger, it is that he doesn’t always read the dressing room as well as he reads the pitch.

    On the pitch I agree with most of the posts. Should we lose Cesc, and I don’t believe we will, TV looks to be the ideal captain, but… I’m not ideally placed to judge.

  197. W.A.T.H says:

    Spot on SD………….. far to much politics and ppl sticking their noses into Capello’s job…! makes you wonder eh…!

  198. Red Arse says:


    I don’t know what was in his head, nor does anyone else, but as usual what governed the response of many was the reaction of the gutter press.

    My instinctive reaction is to think they are simply putting their slant on it to dis Arsenal.

    If you watch Sunday Supplement, you will know the journalists involved are open supporters of Manure, Chelski and Liverpool. They don’t hide it! When have you ever seen an Arsenal supporting journo on that programme?

    Nuff said. It screws me up, I don’t deny it, and they influence everyone. Well not everyone but too many. 😦

  199. oliver says:

    sd, or that if he stays in the england post, he will no longer select some of the senior players that let the country down. as i posted earlier, i wish he would not have mentioned wilshere and gibbs by name – they need to become first-team regulars with arsenal before england comes into the discussion. that said, i have high hopes that gibbs will supplant clichy as first choice lb, and i hope wilshere (and eastmond) get regular first team experience, whether at arsenal or on loan.

  200. Red Arse says:

    Sorry Oliver you wouldn’t get that programme in the US, but you get the gist.

  201. mikeB says:

    I wasn’t so much annoyed by the tantrum; more by the fact that the rest of the team needed leadership, and he was nowhere to be seen at the most critical moment.

  202. jabberwocky says:

    red arse – cheers, i appreciate it. trying to get into music journalism so that takes up most of my spare time, but may look into doing footy stuff too, so thanks for the offer. if you like music then check out my blog: alexbbaker.blogspot.com

    W.A.T.H. – hard to counter without falling into old tired debates. but basically i dont think denilson is a square peg in a round hole at all, and thus hard to argue this point without escaping from the fact that we hold vastly different views that cannot be reconciled no matter how long we go on debating it.

    as to regarding this last season and other’s as ‘wengers experiment’, i really really do not agree that the whole youth set up is some sort of private ego-driven experiment. i think wenger’s actions have been made out of necessity, not through his own will.

    with regards young players on high wages and long contracts…this isnt rewarding ‘failure’ its good business. by doing so we get the best young players about, they all want to play for arsenal (look at hazard’s comments for example). young players are a gamble as you dont know whether they’ll grow into their own potential. however, on the chance they do, then if you are paying them well and they are on a good contract that is long term, then when barca and real come sniffing they have to pay up. look at fabregas, if we didnt have him contracted until 2015 we’d be in a right pickle now.

    yes, some of the players dont live up to their potential, and these can be sold when we want for reasonable fees. by offering long contracts with relatively high wages ensures that the ones that make it cant be prised away for peanuts. people lament letting the likes of flamini go on a free (where he hadnt impressed up until that season) and then complain when other players who aren’t setting the world alight at this point in time are offered long contracts. you cant have it both ways. and until we start dominating domestic and european competition, ‘bigger’ clubs will always be after our youngsters, so offering long contracts as an insurance policy against this makes sense.

    i also think that in retrospect this will all make sense. each year we improve, and i think we’ve got a great chance of the title next year. you cant compare this team and the invincibles, as that team had played together for about 5 years and were made up of players in their prime. the league is a lot more competative than it was in 98, so i think that when this team reach their prime, with a few additions now that we have more money and a sound financial footing, all of the frustration and disappointment will be worth it.

    i know its hard looking at man utd, chelsea et al getting all this success, but their financial model spells disaster in the future, and our prudence and economic model will be lauded for years to come. if you want an in depth review of football finances i’d advise you go to stone cold arsenal which did a series looking at arsenal, madrid and utd/chelsea and puts forth the theory that financial judgement day is around the corner for those clubs as the crises in greece (and soon spain, iceland, ireland and portugal) will soon reach the world of football and the entire pack of cards will come tumbling down.

  203. oliver says:

    ra, we all know the media has an anti-arsenal bias, but i still see gallas’ actions on that day as letting the team – the team he was leader of – down. sag, slump and cry all you want after the final whistle, but the final whistle had not yet gone, so there was still time (even if only a few seconds) to try and do something about it. his body language was all wrong for a supposed leader, that is how i see that unfortunate incident. and i understand that it was a hugely emotional day for the team and supporters, especially after the taylor – eduardo incident, but there is time to express that after the match is over, not during.

  204. Red Arse says:

    I understand Mike, and can’t disagree with that point. But it is the holier than thou attitude of non-Arsenal journos trying to tell us what is or is not acceptable.

  205. SD-London says:

    Jabberwocky is back , see yah !

  206. jabberwocky says:


  207. mikeB says:

    Non-Arsenal Journalists? Is there any other kind?
    I hear the Sun has amended their Journalists application form to ask the question…
    Do you enjoy watching Arsenal?
    It’s right there on page one, under the question…
    Are you a registered sex offender?

  208. Red Arse says:


    You around? Paraguay are going to win! Williams will soon see off Li, worst luck! 🙂 So come and join us!

  209. Red Arse says:

    see you Jabber. 🙂

  210. Red Arse says:


    I think the second question is “can you read big words?”.

  211. W.A.T.H says:

    Jabber agree with lots of what your saying but by paying high wages on young players that contradicts what you were saying about keeping older players on high wages does itt not?. One or two older heads were needed and may of made a huge difference and wages cannot come into it as an argument either for or against when winning silverware brings in big revenue streams in theri own right. I agree our financial model is the way to go BUT i think far to much has been made of us having no money its purely down to Wenger not spending it as he wants to be proved right with project youth. He had the opportunity yet again in January to buy shredly which could of won us the league but failed to do so yet again and means hadn’t learn’t his lesson from the previos season. I think Wenger had to do things years back for financial reasons but def not teh last two seasons it’s now purely down to him and his refusal to buy when needed.
    If you look at Denilson AW tries to play him in the Flamini role as the ball winner body guard fro Cesc and he isn’t that kind of player he isn’t that dynamic enough nor does he have the engine for that so why persist with it hence my square tube round hole comment. If we all agreed on who’s great and who’s crap it really would make for boring reading and debate the object is not to slag either opinion off but to debate it in a sensible way simple as that.

  212. jabberwocky says:

    bye was directed at sd, i’ll be here watching from afar as have half a days work to do in about 2.5 hours!

  213. Red Arse says:


    bit of ambiguity there. Were you saying bye to us or just SD?

    I will look up your site, sounds good! 🙂

  214. agirlagunner says:

    Hola, all. I have much to catch up on, I see… Back in a bit. 🙂

  215. oliver says:

    hi agag…

  216. W.A.T.H says:

    AGAG, if you come back bosseyed it’s Jabbers fault….! the GG’s have been poured and are awaiting ur return.

  217. Red Arse says:


    If you are in the chair, mine is a nice cool Chablis tonight! Mmmm lovely, and you are not bad either! 🙂

    Yikes, I meant that in a v.manly way, of course, bit like serena.

  218. Red Arse says:

    Speaking of drinky poos, that Mike is v.sneaky, he has not coughed up my fee for writing that masterpiece for him. 😦

  219. W.A.T.H says:

    After last nights Cab RA I think you should be on the still water.

    If you look like Serena i’m loading the harpoon…..!

  220. agirlagunner says:

    WATH, be a dear. I need half a bottle. 🙂 (only halway done, and already my head is spinning.)

  221. jabberwocky says:

    wath you keep dragging me back in 🙂

    when i was talking about wages i used ‘relatively’. therefore the youngsters like JET, Wilshere etc on (i’m guessing here) 10-15k a week is not high in the great scheme of things but is high in comparison to their peers at other clubs. denilson etc (again guessing) on 20-40k a week is relatively high for squad players but not that great in grand scheme. whereas players like gilberto would have rightly been rewarded for their service with wages ranging from 70-100k per week, and therefore their wages are a lot higher than the relatively high ones of the youngsters.

    i do not believe that we have had money in the last two seasons. i note you cite the last transfer window (in january)…who would you have brought in? chamakh? would have paid around 8 million minimum for 6 months of service…that would be foolish. who else? its all very well to list players etc but its impossible to know how practical moves would be (ie how much their clubs are asking for, how much the players are asking for and how this fits in with financial model)

    secondly, wenger keeps transfer dealings secret, so how do you know that he didnt try to bring in players only that the deals couldnt go through for some reason? also nikki b scored around 9 goals between january and end of season, what player in the world (that would cost under 20 million) could walk into our squad and achieve that with no time to adapt and settle in?

    as to the winter transfer window before that…he spent 12 mill (with add-ons taking it to approx 17mill) on arshavin and saved our season. he therefore spent big, and therefore did not make a mistake meaning that the perceived lack of action in most recent winter transfer window could not be a repeat of a mistake if that ‘mistake’ never occurred.

  222. W.A.T.H says:

    I just froze the bottle AGAG and poured us half each I knew u’d have a head spin 😉

  223. Red Arse says:

    I’ll have you know Wath, I was v.brave yesterday. Tortured by some female doc when all I wanted was to have my knee fixed.

    Needed a drink and sympathy. I got the drink and Rico provided the sympathy.

  224. Red Arse says:

    Oho, Jabber,

    Combative riposte. You are loving this. Switch from music journalsim to sport. Your analytical skills are coming to the fore. ‘Course if you get caught by the boss you might have to anyway, but NOT the gutter press. See Mike’s post above. 🙂

  225. W.A.T.H says:

    I think you’ll find in relation to wages Jabber Gilberto was relatively “lowly” paid and should not of been sold/let go….. Big wages for players still in the reserves and or on the bench doesnt make sense when you could have a player who could be winning you matches.

    The Arshavin argument is valid but also a little flawed when we needed him just to help us qualify for champions league, the season before when we blew the title in the meltdown at Brum AW had the opportunity to bring in a player or two that could of covered the loss of Eduardo and again bolstered comfidence as yet again RVP was already missing. As for jan this year an old head would of sufficed I’m not a glory hunter looking for big names in Jan but surely AW is shrewd enough to pick up and old pro who could of scored 5/10 goals who could of won us the league, Bendtner is too young and was also injured that we could not of expected him to lead the line and the team to win us anything AW knew this why not put it right?.

    As for not having money for the last two seasons we’ll agree to disagree but just add up gate receipts and you’ll see that alone gives us mucho casho…! add in transfer monies etc etc we’re not as skint as AW would like us to believe. Didn’t mean to drag u back 🙂

  226. jabberwocky says:

    i wont get caught, i will however be stuck in this blo ody office until 7pm though!

  227. jabberwocky says:

    but thanks RA

  228. mikeB says:

    The concept of a ‘Mythic Structure’ has obviously eluded you.

    Much the same as any possibility of royalties.

    Don’t despair; a hungry writer is a creative writer; just ask Katie Price.

  229. rico says:

    Denilson is crap 😉

  230. agirlagunner says:

    RA, this is one lodestone of a topic. (if I keep shaking my head, the cobwebs are bound to float away) Great choice, great write. 🙂

    oliver, kamusta? nasabi nyo na lahat! 🙂 na-overwhelm ako.

    Hello, jabberwocky… hola, mikeb…

    We only need JJ and KT, and it would be a full house.

    WATH, I’m sure I’ll finish your half. More please 😛
    And you do write well, so give it a go.

  231. rico says:

    Afternoon agag, hows tricks? Looking forward to Robin facing the Brazilians next up 🙂

  232. Red Arse says:

    Mike, I like to consider her beneath me.

    Epic fantasy wise. 🙂

  233. rico says:

    I’ve been trying to persuade WATH to write for months, if you guys/gals manage to change his mind, i am obviously losing my touch… 😉

    All I get is ‘ NO ‘ !! 😦 😦

  234. Suhail.TV says:

    Ignoring me.. AGAG 😦

  235. rico says:

    Any chance of keeping the comments less long, its taking me ages to catch up 🙂 🙂

  236. rico says:

    And me STV, i’m deeply offended 😉 😉

    In fact you are all ignoring me… 😦 😦

  237. W.A.T.H says:

    I can’t write anything I shake to much from all this GG and now AGAG wants half my stock………. Gutted.

    No worries Rico it’s a def NO all round 😉

    That’s another marathon reply from Jabber on the cards now that u just called Denilson crap Rico…!

  238. agirlagunner says:

    Hi, rico. You have a stable of writers now, including Mr. GG. Haha. Everyone’s been stellar.

    Had another fourteen-hour work day. Sniff.

  239. W.A.T.H says:

    If she under u RA u’ll be along way off the ground..!

  240. Red Arse says:


    I watched a travelogue on the Phillipines and I think that was “Hello, what can I say (?)” or something.

    Actually, I used to have a young Filipino girl working with me. She thought I was useless too. 😦

  241. Red Arse says:


    I didn’t ignore you. Wath and I were discussing you only 15 posts ago! 🙂 He naughty.

  242. Suhail.TV says:

    And WATH too.. rico Agag looks on GG !!

  243. agirlagunner says:

    STVeeeeeee, I could never ignore you! How are you? 🙂 And you must reply with no longer than one sentence.

    rico, WATH just needs to be plied with drink… and puppies. That’s not unmanageable is it?

  244. oliver says:

    ra, kamusta ka is equivalent to how are you? we speak some ilocano and igorot in my house, but not much tagalog.

    hi agag, sorry about the long work hours, i know how you feel. the longer i work, it feels like i accomplish less and less.

  245. W.A.T.H says:

    ST said hello to you about 2000 comments back you obviously lost me in the mad scramble.

    AGAG I’m deeply hurt u think only plied with GG and puppies………………… 😛

  246. Red Arse says:


    you realise I did not understand a word after “some”.

    You aren’t making it up are you? 🙂

  247. Suhail.TV says:

    Hate that girl RA.. She can’t think differently 🙂

  248. Red Arse says:

    Hi Suhail,

    Which girl? Rico? (gasp, gasp, you are in biiiiig trouble Suhail! 🙂 you naughty boy too, just like Wath. 😉

  249. jabberwocky says:

    i think basically that especially due to financial constraints, but also just because of his nature, I dont think wenger will ever pay over the odds for any player. thus its all very well to say should have brought in such and such a professional, but without having a knowledge of who is available at a decent price (ie not vastly inflated) i dont think can really judge wenger and castigate him for making a mistake. also if you look at the amount of strikers we have, bringing in someone just for the sake of it would really have upset things as when (if) this injury curse ever lifts there would be serious unrest. for a team that has 1 forward and two wingers/wide forwards, we have a hell of a lot of frontmen. and i know the injuries persist but i dont think anyone can account for them getting worse each year

    also, i dont think we are or were skint, but i dont think we were in a position to make huge outlays that were not deemed neccessary.

    with regards to gilberto, i agree that he should have stayed, i was just speculating as to why wenger acted like he did, in other words it was part of a general policy rather than a foolish act that he hadnt thought about properly.

  250. oliver says:

    sorry ra, there are hundreds of different languages in the philippines, mostly dependent upon region. tagalog is the national language, but there are several others. ilocano and igorot are two that my wife speaks and i have picked up some as well. agag can explain much better than i.

  251. Red Arse says:

    Thanks Oliver but you explained that v.well. i had only heard of dingaling!

  252. rico says:

    agag, did you mention Stella, my favourite beverage 🙂

  253. agirlagunner says:

    oliver, my dad’s Ilocano; my mom’s Ibanag. the latter is infinitely easier to understand. But I find saying “Madi kayat!” a rather useful response to everything from “Walk the dogs!” to “Make some coffee!” to “Are you paying the bills…?” :).

    STV, you do mean Williams, yeah?

    RA, oliver translated it perfectly.

  254. W.A.T.H says:

    Ok I off you lot, take care have a great evening or day where ever you may be and least now Jabber can finish his work without having to respond to my drivel. A quick round of GG’s to all a cheers and I’m off……..

    C’ya soon……

  255. rico says:

    RA, dingaling, you mean Chuck Berry, our very own youth player 😉

  256. rico says:

    ta ta WATH, come back sooooooooooooon 😦 😦

  257. Suhail.TV says:

    Bye WATH..

  258. Red Arse says:

    Bye Wath, Tomorrow?

  259. Red Arse says:


    We are talking about the same player! 🙂

  260. jabberwocky says:

    take care.

  261. Suhail.TV says:

    Same one thinking you as useless. she cant think differently 🙂

  262. Red Arse says:

    Rico, Japan and Para are heading for penalties any minute now.

  263. rico says:

    who is useless???

  264. agirlagunner says:

    Here’s your bottle, rico. At the moment, I am all opinioned out on Beloved Club.

    WATH, I’d share the GG too, if I had it. But you’ve hoarded the supply 😦 and now you have to play the enabler. “Deeply hurt”? Who knew you were so fragile? 😛
    Bye and be safe.

  265. rico says:

    Cheers RA, i’ll get that on…

  266. Suhail.TV says:

    Agag.. Dont you notice.. Japan is still fighting and 3 mins away from a shoot..

  267. Red Arse says:

    Well guys and gals, got to go and see the pen shoot out!

  268. rico says:

    agag, you are a star, its nicely chilled too 🙂

    Another 14 hour work day agag, i think i need to send you a cyber bottle of GG – you must be shattered 😦 😦

  269. rico says:

    RA, you’ll be back 😉

  270. agirlagunner says:

    I’m watching TV too, STV. 🙂 Bet my bottom peso Paraguay wins.

  271. rico says:

    How am I going to follow todays post and comments tomorrow 😦

  272. rico says:

    Me too agag, thats it with us ladies, we can
    multi-task 😉

  273. Suhail.TV says:

    Y? U R N aCian 🙂

  274. agirlagunner says:

    Who are you cheering for, rico?

    I don’t even know why I’m working so hard. My friends keep pretty much the same hours, so everytime we’re together, there’s always a bit of a moan. 🙂

  275. Suhail.TV says:

    HELLO RICO……………… HOW ARE YOU !!!!!

  276. agirlagunner says:

    It’s nothing to do with race, STV. 🙂 Just a gut feeling.

  277. Suhail.TV says:


  278. Suhail.TV says:

    when I typing comment a blued guy hit it on the bar..
    Agag I know, to get the stain more challenge..ok!!

  279. rico says:

    don’t you hate it when one player misses…. unless its Rooney of course..

  280. rico says:

    HELLO STV – Good thanks 😉 😉

  281. oliver says:

    that was a rather dire 120 mins. someone has to go through and on this occasion it was paraguay, but both sides were more interested in not losing.

  282. rico says:

    I was like that agag when i worked, i’d say at work, busy busy, then suddenly thought, why am i doing this? Go home rico…

    Difficult choice, i guess i would have liked Japan as they ‘show great spirit’ 😉

  283. rico says:

    penalties were good though oliver 😉
    i didn’t watch the match… glad i didn’t now…

  284. agirlagunner says:

    Haha, STV.

    rico, or unless it was van Nistelrooy.

  285. oliver says:

    i am at work now, rico, so i have to be sneaky about it….saw enough to be rather underwhelmed….penalties are always tense, regardless of who plays – in this instance, we would have been better served if paraguay and japan skipped the first 120 mins and went directly to pens!

  286. Red Arse says:

    Hi and goodbye, peeps.

    Tomorrow! 🙂

  287. oliver says:

    konbanwa, ra

  288. rico says:

    agag, ah yes, the horse, my do i dislike that man ….

    i like that idea oliver, although i wouldn’t want arsenal to do that with almunia or fabianski in goal 😉 😉

    RA, have a good one, see you tomorrow…

  289. Red Arse says:

    Oliver, I think that was goodbye? Nite to you 🙂

  290. agirlagunner says:

    Nightnight, RA. Tomorrow!

  291. Suhail.TV says:

    Night.. RA

    Agag, “Hi jj Bye JJ” time is about to arrive

  292. oliver says:

    night to all who are signing off, and yes that was japanese for good night.

  293. rico says:

    Guys and Gals, I’m having an early departure too, stuff to get done and goota try and muster up something for the morning…. 😦

    Have a fab eve/day/night wherever you are

    Stay safe….

  294. jabberwocky says:

    g’night ra and g’night everyone else, has been a pleasure waffling at you

  295. rico says:

    jabba, you too, make sure you come back soon…

  296. Suhail.TV says:

    Night rico.. take care.

  297. oliver says:

    night ‘all. if spain should fail to advance this evening, expect renewed cesc speculation the moment their exit is confirmed!

  298. agirlagunner says:

    Night, rico. I’ll have a fab day if Fab & Co. lose. The sooner he’s separated from the stains, the better it is for my peace of mind.

    STV, it’s a bank holiday tomorrow. I can hang around a bit more.

  299. Suhail.TV says:

    Bye jabber.. and all… Am off too

  300. Suhail.TV says:

    No GG in the holy day Agag!! opr just change the branch

  301. Suhail.TV says:

    I mean brand.. oh I was..

  302. oliver says:

    agag, we will see what happens. i expect spain to win tonight, but considering laporta steps down tomorrow, we may still hear some dna talk…

  303. agirlagunner says:

    I have to work anyway so I can’t GG til evening. Haha. Nitenite, STV.

  304. JonJon says:

    hi AGAG bye AGAG.. 😉

    evening all

    nice post RA

  305. Suhail.TV says:

    may be some ‘Okasaki’ (reminded by jpn no:9)fragments oliver, but the remaining parts are now arsenalised.

  306. agirlagunner says:

    oliver, Portugal may surprise us. When in the mood, Ron is unplayable. 🙂

  307. Suhail.TV says:

    Hello JJ I talked about it..

  308. JonJon says:

    i think the main thing we have to consider is that the youth system is really a cash cow…

    apart from cesc, clichy and now song none of the lads make it…they are all sold on and i doubt we will keep the three i mentioned much longer..

    as for english lads, they cost a mint so wenger has decided to grow his own crop but he has no patience for them…he’d rather give game time to the likes of denilson instead…

    unless the local lads cost a bit of money.like theo or rambo he wont play them…

  309. agirlagunner says:

    Hi, JJ! 🙂 I can hang around, but truly after all that’s been said, what is there to add? Care to give it a shot?

    STV, haha.

  310. Suhail.TV says:

    VIVA portugisa (only for today)

  311. JonJon says:


    a shot of GG??? that sounds lovely although im a fan of nice frosty beers in this weather..

    just cracking open my second now..after the day ive had the first went down like pop..

  312. JonJon says:

    what was japan score?

  313. JonJon says:

    and have we signed any players yet??

    or sold any youngsters?? 😉

  314. agirlagunner says:

    GG is always good. 🙂 I’m having one. You should try San Miguel.

    Cesc is very possibly going, Clichy is staying as he’s French :), and I don’t see Song leaving us anytime soon.

    It’s quite appalling, really how Wilshere is out on loan, while we put up with the D&D rubbish.

  315. oliver says:

    cesc on the bench for tonight’s clash. again.

  316. Suhail.TV says:

    Heineken… .. now I really gotta go bye jj, agag

  317. agirlagunner says:

    Why Del Bosque persists with Busquets, I don’t understand. He isn’t all that. And he dives a lot.

  318. JonJon says:

    im on the carlsbergs…
    was drinking becks but their all in the bin 😉
    ive got to go now im off to watch cesc sit on the bench i’ll catch you all tomorrow

  319. oliver says:

    cesc is a far superior player to busquets, he creates more, has had far more resposibility at a young age. aragones used cesc off the bench as well, so…

  320. agirlagunner says:

    Bye, jj and stv. 🙂

    To be honest, it’s not as if DB’s tactics in midfield have worked fantastically well. We’ll see. I almost feel bad for YKW.

  321. Red Arse says:

    Oliver, just back to close my machine down.

    Have you been to Mo’s? Should have, blooming Mets! 🙂

    Think I eventually got a mit at Dick’s but don’t remember as I am always in and out of sports shops.

    Nite again.

  322. agirlagunner says:

    Night again, RA! Take care. 🙂

  323. oliver says:

    ra, i have shopped at modells, dicks, and sports authority on occasion. mets had clubhouse stores in two separate manhattan location, i used to get gear either there or shea stadium, when i attended games. have not yet been to citi field, perhaps this summer i will go up there to see a game, now that i am back on the east coast. until saturday, it had been nine years since i was home.

  324. Red Arse says:


    A member of my family is a well known comedian in the UK, and he is also well known among the younger generation in the US, having appeared on Chelsea a couple of times, promoting his concerts. He was in NY for a month lately, just getting back last Sunday, as he also has a rock band and they were recording in NY.

    He is also a talented Artist and he has a show of his paintings in London this week-end. I won’t say his name, as I haven’t got his permission but he always keeps me up to date with my favourite American food etc, when he is over there.

    His dad lives in Kansas, I may have said, and he is an artist also. A very cosmopolitan family! But not as interesting as yours! 🙂

    Got to go.

    Nite Agag.

  325. oliver says:

    thanks ra, but my family is ordinary – husband (me), wife and our two young children. nothing special about us and that is how i like it.

  326. rico says:

    Morning, new post up

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: