I know people are quick to read into things, especially online and I am certainly not immune to this, but we keep getting these videos of the team training, working on fitness, showing the backroom staff doing their thing on Arsenal.com and it’s hard not to see the stark contrast between this and the previous regime.
We live in an age where content is hoovered up quicker than the dirty pigeons devour the bread I put out on my back patio for the coal tits. People are desperate for information all of the time and in this digital era it’s served to them in multiple forms. Football has had to adapt and whilst the club has been brilliant in recent years in terms of its online presence, it really feels as though the shackles are off and there’s more free-reign, to which I’m loving watching.
Not least because it shows the players in a more natural habitat. If you think about where they spend most of their lives, it’s actually at London Colney and so to see more of them in a more familiar and comfortable setting naturally generates videos that look like a more amiable place.
It’s heartening as a fan to see these videos and it all adds to the excitement of the new season. We all know when the football kicks off it could all be different and it might not go swimmingly when the proper stuff starts but I have to say that so far the club have played an absolute blinder this summer in all aspects of its operation.
I guess Ivan has probably had enough time to plan it though. He must have done because we all knew it was going downhill for Wenger last season and now we see what has been in his ‘catalyst for change’ plan after all. He’s certainly not got everything right from a fans perspective in recent years but to my mind he and his team are doing a bang up job so far. Let’s just hope all of this positivity transfers to the pitch.
The club is showing that it’s listening to fans and yesterday I even received a survey from the club asking me about the match day experience. It’s nice that they’re taking things into consideration but I hope there is someone who will override fan response should it get too bonkers. Like playing live music post game, or having Indie music on in the half hour up to the game.
I guess it shouldn’t really matter too much to me though. I’m certainly not going to start turning up with 30 minutes to go to listen to anything; my pre match time is precious and spent in the pub drinking with mates, whilst the post-match for me is usually about getting home as The Management and I usually have stuff on in the evenings. All the surveys and live music in the world aren’t going to make me want to spend a fiver on a plastic bottle of Carlsberg after a 2-2 draw with West Ham at home, that’s for sure!
But I appreciate being consulted on this stuff as a fan. So many clubs just don’t bother and you only need to look at the way in which the fans are so disengaged with West Ham at the moment to see what happens when you make judgements without at least making the fans feel like you’re listening.
In terms of football we’re now on to the juicy stuff and it’s Uruguay v France at 3pm and Brazil v Belgium at 7pm. From my perspective I would love to see Lucas Torreira’s Uruguay get past France and Belgium to beat Brazil, but that’s mainly because I have the Belgians in my company sweepstake. I suspect I might not get either though. I do think Uruguay have been impressive and I might have a cheeky flutter on an outside bet of them, but I think the favourites in both games will go through. We shall see though.
Other than that there’s not a lot going on at the moment. The sun is out, it’s shaping up to be a great British summer and all feels good.
Hope it is in your world too.