Morning Gooners. Hope you’re holding out ok? I managed to get through Good Friday, which means a Saturday that can be spent having plenty of booze, as I’m at a friends Wedding in the City, so at least that’s another distraction from yet more time spent without The Arsenal.
Last night there were the latest round of international games and wouldn’t you know it, Ollie G cropped up on the score sheet for France vs The Netherlands. Koscielny played 90 minutes so I’m assuming all was fine with him and with Giroud coming off on 73 minutes I believe that was to give Gignac some game time, so hopefully he’s ok.
Today will be the turn of the English and German players and perhaps it will be an opportunity for Theo Walcott to get himself some minutes, despite what Robbie Fowler has said about him being picked on past form, which if we’re all honest with ourselves none of us could argue. Walcott has been dire since the start of 2016 and his inability to affect games has become even more obvious as the team as suffered a crisis of confidence. Sometimes I accuse Arsene of having his hierarchies, but even he has his point in which he’ll stop playing players if they simply aren’t doing it. Countless England managers pick players based on reputation rather than their actual form. It’s like some sort of terrible affliction that gets in to their minds. I remember when David Seaman first broke in to the England team in 1987, only to be pretty much sidelined until 1996 when he proper established himself. Between 87 and 96 there had been Shilton, then Woods who became the number one for a period of time. Shilton I could understand, but he was ageing and when Woods became number 1 it was a bit of a joke in my eyes. He clearly wasn’t as good as Big Dave, yet continued to be picked.
You can see that with Hodgson and Walcott at the moment. But not just Walcott, because Rooney will also always get picked, regardless of his form. It’s the politics of international football and that, along with the fact the standard of the game is a bit sh*te and it detracts from The Arsenal, is the reason why I detest international footbalal so much. Also the moronic England fans I have to endure when I’m on my way back home from work during a working week when there are midweek games on.
So will I be checking the scores this evening? No. I shall be drinking with my friends and pretending that there is no such thing as international football. When I fire up my laptop tomorrow I shall be checking the results only to see how our players fared and by ‘fared’, what I really mean is ‘survived’.
The only other stuff knocking around that is Arsenal-related is the comments by Usmanov about how Arsene must be the man to stay at the club. The big fat billionaire has waddled his way into the Wenger in/out debate by declaring the Arsenal manager as an ‘major symbol and main asset’. I know this guy is on the outside of the board looking in, but it’s hard not to hear those words and have a little alarm bell ringing off in your head, isn’t it? ‘Major symbol’? What the heck is that supposed to mean? Has Usmanov bought in to the rhetoric that Arsenal are nothing without Wenger? Is he just saying these things to curry favour with the current arsenal board in some way? Either way, comments like that will hardly endure yourself to a growing population of fans that are becoming more discontented with the idea that too many people view the club as ‘Arsene FC’.
For my part, I suspect it was just an attempt to show the manager that he retains the faith of the other billionaire at the club, but it does come across as if the Russian is a man who also is locked in the inertia of maintaining the current stasis at the club. I’d love Arsene to win us the league and if he can get us in to a position where we’re close to that then great, but this season has shown me that I don’t think we’ll ever get that close under him, which is why my previous faith in the manager has wavered so much.
Hey, the season isn’t over and there’s still plenty of games to play and miracles to happen, but if we’re all honest with each other, it’s hardly likely is it? So if/when we get to the end of the season and the league isn’t being lifted by Mikel and Big Per, does that level of support still remain? Not from the fans I don’t think, but certainly from all corners of the shareholders, which further goes to emphasise the distance between the board and the fans of the club.
Anyway, what can we do as mere mortals, other than just continue to watch this play out? I suppose it doesn’t really matter what anyone says, even a toad-looking billionaire owner, because Kroenke has his hands firmly on the club and is probably quite happy with his £3million-a-year dividend that he keeps pulling out of the club. The value of his asset keeps increasing and he can withdraw cash from it without it decreasing too much, so why would he offload that to a Russian, promising gifts to the fans? Personally, I believe Usmanov and his motives about as much as I believe the world is flat, so despite what I’ve seen from some people online, I don’t think he’s the answer too. The only answer is for an Arsenal like you or I to win the Euromillions. About 24 times in a row. Then buy the club and have it run by Arsenal fans for Arsenal fans. I reckon that’d work. You?
That’s it from me for one day. Enjoy Your Easter Saturday. Peace out.