Wednesday 30 March 2016


Talent is a wonderful thing. It can earn you loads of money, fame and adulation. A talented person is the subject of many conversations, arguments, and disagreements and can be the source of joy to many as well. If only I was talented. :)

Despite these, lots of knowledgeable people have commented that talent alone can get you so far. Talent requires a few bolt on. Application is my favourite one. No matter how talented you are, if you don’t apply yourself, you are unlikely to achieve your true potential. Other bolt - on that can potentially accompany talent are charisma, luck, judgment, and probably the right mentors to channel you in the right direction.

Footballers in the current age are very lucky. Averagely talented players can become multimillionaires before their 21st birthday. Those who are able to apply their talents can become rich beyond imagination.

No doubt John Stones is talented. He is young and some might say good-looking. He looks supremely comfortable with the ball at his feet. He appears to be a natural footballer and we have heard lots of comparisons to Franz Beckenbauer and Rio Ferdinand.

John Stones has come a long way in his somewhat short professional football-playing career. He came through the Barnsley academy and signed his first professional contract as a 17 year old about 5 years ago. He made his debut for Barnsley the year after signing his professional contract and less than 11 months later he left for Everton for a transfer fee of £3m. 2 years later some money miss road wanted to pay £50m for him. If you have a money-printing machine at home, I doubt if you can turn £3m into £50m in less than 2 years. I digress.

You can see young John has achieved so much in such a little time and I wish him continuing success in his footballing career. However I genuinely think he is a spoilt child.  Many commentators have complained about the side effects of young players in England having it all too early as it negatively affects their football development. It is clear to me that John Stones is one of these young players whose success has gotten into his head.

I suspect he has read all the headlines and news column comparing him to a genuine great like Beckenbauer. He has probably lapped up all the salivating comments about him been the future of English football and a nailed on future England captain. As far as he is concerned, he has arrived.

I hope I am wrong but I am convinced I am right. If John Stones is not pig headed, why hasn’t he cut out this silliness disguised as ball playing out of his game? I listened to the first 5 minutes of the England match versus Netherlands last night on radio and the commentators were appalled about his ball playing in the England penalty area. What pig headedness. In the first 5 minutes for God’s sake. After the flak he has received this season. SMH
I watched the remaining 85 minutes plus on TV and was disgusted by some of the moves he attempted in defence especially the slip leading to Netherland’s first goal. In life and often in football, not everything is right or wrong. Mostly the things that come off justify the action you took before hand. Conversely if the results are negative, it evidences the fact that you perhaps made the wrong choice. John slipping yesterday directly resulted in Netherland’s equalizing goal. He was at fault for that goal although Danny BLOCKBRAIN Rose didn’t help matters.

Stones is a player that has been roundly criticized by many of his own fans this season for his dangerous ball play in his own penalty area. He has lost his starting position to a frankly average central defender in Funes Mori and this is despite the fact that Stones is clearly a favourite of his Club manager. Roberto Martinez has taken him out of the firing line and saved him from the ire of the Everton fans. You will think he will learn TIME & PLACE.  No. First 5 minutes.  I despair.  

John Stones’ promoters in the media have been out in droves, defending him, egging him on. Pointing out his contributions to the Vardy goal and another pass to Walcott that almost came off. Good luck to them. They obviously know more about football than I do. But one thing is clear for me and to me. If your redeeming feature as a central defender is your assist or goal scoring record, you need to contemplate a change of position on the football field.  As a defender. PLEASE DEFEND FIRST. Don’t create panic in your penalty area.

I saw Roy’s reaction after England conceded their first goal and knew he was very upset. I’m not sure what he was upset about. I hope he is the safety first manager that everybody thinks he is. If so, he should drop John Stones from all of his future plans right away. He is a disaster that will happen time and time again if he has his current mind set. John is young enough to play a role in future England set up with Roy’s successor and this is only if young John cuts out the pig headedness and silliness in his play especially the dangerous play in the penalty area.

Monday 28 March 2016

We Are Not Serious About Fighting Terrorism

About 4 months ago, I wrote this just after the Paris attacks. Revelations from those attacks and the recent terrorist attacks from Brussels plus the fallout from the ongoing investigation of the Bruselles attacks reinforces my stance in November. I have summarised this stance as follows: 


The revelations rom the ongoing the investigations into the Brussels attacks just makes me wonder how ridiculous can you get? 

The Belgian authorities were warned about these criminals. The same conscience less people that their 16th century social policies created and they did nothing about these murderers. Leaving them to kill many innocent people in cold blood. 

I think there is a case for some of the victims' family to sue the Belgian government for accessory to murder and criminal negligence and I hope they do this successfully. This was state sponsored murder whichever way you choose to dress it up. The state wilfully allowed known criminals the right of passage, the freedom to plot their carnage, the liberty to acquire their death dealing raw materials and the breathing space infect life long sadness on innocent people. TERRIBLE CRIMINAL NEGLIGENCE. 

Please don't ever tell me that a minister offered to resign for these crimes against his people. The government ought to resign and the minister and every decision maker within his ministry ought to be prosecuted for their criminal negligence on this issue. 

The absence of criminal persecutions wholeheartedly supports the fact that their decision not to action the information provided by Turkey is a deliberate policy of the government and evidences the culpability of the Belgian government.

The statement coming out of Turkey is enough to cause panic on the streets of any Western European city. Can you imagine? People arriving in Turkey with passports on the government watch list, people arriving with government black listed passports, people arriving with weapons and weaponry accessories. All heading to the Syria border on their way to join ISIS. 

Turkey thought perhaps this was a deliberate policy to get rid of Jihadists from Western Europe. Were they wrong? Hell yeah. These same people were allowed back into Western Europe. Some undetected and if detected issued with new passports and allowed to get on their bike or thrown into prison to fraternise with fellow prisoners and hopefully turn the prison into a finishing school for future Jihadists and fundamentalists. 

Of course, our human rights legislation prevents the government for declaring these traitors stateless and deporting them to Fuckthemistan or airlifting them to some fundamentalists republic where they can be subjected to the full effect of Sharia Law. 

Our own laws prevent us from keeping them in solitary confinement for the length of their prison sentence or for the rest of their miserable lives but the same laws allows us to keep them with other prisoners who we potentially can rehabilitate and who are not looking to blow all of us to smithereens. 

I hope our leaders can get their acts together and hopefully allow our archaic laws catch up with the realities of 2016 and beyond. 

It is totally unbelievable that a citizen who wages war against his / her country can't lose their citizenship.  Deport them to the nearest stateless people's camp or make them a ward of the United Nations. 

People who deliberately try to deny others their fundamental human rights do not deserve the protection of human rights legislation. 

Tuesday 22 March 2016


Arsene gets excoriated regularly in the conventional & social media for his refusal to spend all that money in the Arsenal bank account. It doesn't matter if 'ALL THAT' money is for day to day expenditure or if the club is compelled by the banks to keep a certain amount of its resources in cash. JUST SPEND THE MONEY.  A lot of Wenger's criticism has come from many who are financial and economic illiterates and some from mischief makers.

Yes, Cech was Wenger’s only purchase in the summer transfer window and despite Arsene's protestations that he will only buy if he sees a player that can improve on his present squad, the emphasis has been on spending for spending sake.

I have seen many exchanges on social media about player signings and I am yet to see any of the transfer wizards come up with the name of a player that Arsene could / should have bought in the last transfer window that would have improved on his current crop of players. Schneiderlin was last seen setting the Manchester United midfield alight. Anthony Martial is the new Messi. Otamendi is the new Tony Adams. Yohan Cabaye is inspiring Crystal Palace to their lowest league finish since they gained promotion. Raheem Sterling - rich man's Alex Iwobi and a poor imitation at that. 

The Suarez transfer saga is another stick people use to try and deride Wenger. For me, its all about an agenda to fit in with the "Wenger doesn't want to spend money" narrative. This is what the Liverpool owner said about the transfer saga here 

If after reading this, you still blame Wenger. I'm sorry I can't help you. Without the player agitating, there was no prize that would have made Liverpool sell to Arsenal. What Suarez had to do at the World Cup to engineer his move is proof of my stance  and that of every right thinking person on this matter. 

Wenger like any manager who has managed for longer than a minute has a doctrine on how he sees the game of football and how he wants his players to approach the game. Some players will fit in within this doctrine.  Some wont. It’s LIFE. Some players can be adapted, some are already at a stage of their career where this adaptation is less likely to yield results.

In addition, Arsenal as a club has values. You might scoff at these values and that is your choice. Arsenal’s values prevents it from doing business with certain football agents. It is a prize the club has decided to pay for having these values. These values will automatically prevent Arsenal from signing some players except those players decide to change their agents and Arsenal is not in the business of forcing players to change their agents.

I am not sure some Arsenal fans understand or appreciate the self imposed restraints the club operates under. If they do, I will genuinely question their continued support for the club. Why do you continue as a fan of this football club when it is obvious your values and the objectives that results from those values differ with that of the club? Is this is a case of unrequited love? Should the club and its owners change their values to satisfy your cravings?

I get the thousands of fans who were born within spitting distance of N5 or who have historical linkages to Arsenal. I get the emotional connection and the difficulty in channelling their support to another football club. However Arsenal is now a global brand and has outgrown North London. Football fans travel all the way from Nigeria to watch Arsenal at the Nou Camp. I met a Swedish fan at the pub in Barcelona who travels from Sweden to almost all away matches in the Premier league.  So individually, as we constantly evaluate our lives and take steps to adjust things we are unhappy with or that causes us grief, perhaps we might want to do the same with our support of and for Arsenal.

Back to the issue of buying players. I get that we are all part of the BUY BUY BUY generation. Who won't want to buy when you can get £1 clothing at Primark, £1 furniture at IKEA and £1 everything at the Pound Shop. So why should football be different? Unfortunately players cost more than a pound. But please where did the BUY BUY BUY mentality take Man City this season and last? What about Manchester United? Or Chelsea? Or Newcastle?

I just wonder how the contradiction on people’s stance with Wenger is not self evident. “He should spend some effing money” & “Now we know spending money doesn’t win the league”. Make up your mind SHEEP (sorry I meant PEOPLE).

Wenger is very stubborn. But Wenger wasn’t stubborn enough to hold on to Van Persie when the Judas literally threw a grenade into the dressing room at the Emirates.

People are quick to point to our 8 years of trophy drought and use that to condemn Wenger. Fine. Enjoy yourself but I have one response

Saturday 19 March 2016


So we went to Barcelona and the rest is history. We will be back in the UCL hopefully next season.

I was secretly hoping that Arsenal will recreate that night in Milan and I will be there to witness it live. It wasn’t to be and it wasn’t for lack of trying.

We had chances to beat them comprehensively but in the end they won handsomely. Their front 3, star men each one, all scored. Koscielny (love him to bits) was clearly at fault for their 1st goal.  Dear old Laurent needs to learn to lose that side of his game where he turns over possession needlessly by not doing the simple thing. Play the easy pass FGS.

I fervently believe that Koscielny is good to play for any team in any of the top European leagues but he lets himself down often. Monaco’s 3rd goal at the Emirates at the same round of 16 last season was also on Laurent in my opinion.

For Barcelona’s second goal and from where I sat, we were awfully static. I got the feeling we were ball watching. I only learnt later that Suarez’ wonder goal was something of a fluke as he shinned the ball. It was a delight to watch all the same.

The little magic man Messi scored their 3rd after we needlessly turned over possession.

I was delighted for Elneny breaking his Arsenal duck and secretly wished a 3 1 away win was on the card after we equalized but it didn’t happen despite the fact that we had the chances to do so. We had Barcelona on toast, they were not composed and were uncomfortable with our forward play and were wayward with turning over possession as we applied pressure.

To those who conveniently say Barcelona did not get out of second gear, I'm sorry I disagree and this is very much part of the agenda I bristle at. Because Arsenal were very good on the night, all of a sudden it is because the other team didn't do well. 

One obvious lesson going back to the Manchester United match at Old Trafford, if we defend with 6, 7 or 8 players with a reasonably good team, we will be under pressure and concede. Alexis and Ozil need to do more defensively in addition to their attacking qualities.

Unquestionably, we lost to a better side but a better side who could have beaten. Yes they have gone on this long undefeated run in all competitions, yes their front 3 appear to be the deadliest in world football at the moment but they were creaking under sustained pressure from Mesut Ozil and his gang. And if only we had taken our chances, Barcelona will now be shoving their Messi up that place where the sun don’t shine like the away fans sang with gusto.

The away fans were very supportive of their team. Passionate and irreverent. The Nou Camp was a shithole they sang. Asked the home fans if we could build a ‘fuzzy duck’ (Cockney Rhyming Slang) roof for them and that their supporting was ‘Tom Tit’ (another Cockney Rhyming Slang).

To be fair, the away fans’ singing wasn’t borne out of any envy, jealousy or bad bells. Nou Camp was a disappointment for me. The Allianz Arena it is not. The fact that the Nou Camp is almost a 100 years old was fairly obvious with a Welsh Arsenal supporter behind me claiming that the Health & Safety lot in England will not allow the stadium operate for one day if it was located back home.

The Barcelona support baffled me immensely. 45 minutes before kick off and the home end of the stadium was virtually empty. On the night, I doubt the stadium was 75% full and this is despite accusations that Barcelona oversold the away end. The absence of support from the home fans received adequate attention from us and we asked if they wanted us to help them sing.

The Arsenal away support was super. There were no divisive banners in the stadium all though that infamous banner was on display at a square in the Las Ramblas area where the well-oiled Arsenal fans were in full voice.

I got the impression from the few fans I interacted with that they were quite upset with the recent results and are taking that frustration out on Arsene Wenger. Upon the announcement of the starting line up, many reacted with disdain thinking it was the act of a surrender monkey. Many potentially feared a pasting but the performance on the night suggests to me that the fans who questioned the line up were wrong and reinforces the need to trust the manager / professionals to do the jobs they are paid to do.

Also, while many want a change of manager, they are not considering the fact that with 9 matches to go till the end of the season, this is the WRONG time to discuss a change of manager. The time is the end of the season or when it is certain that there is nothing to fight for. And you must forgive me that I consider 4th place / Champions League sport worth fighting for. Hopefully Manchester City don’t finish 5th and win the UCL.

Travelling to Barcelona to watch Arsenal play was a pleasure for me. The bonding with fellow fans, time off from work, pleasure of experiencing a different culture, visiting a new place and an iconic albeit disappointing stadium. It was all worth it.

Today’s match against Everton is a must win and so is the remaining of all of our fixtures if we are to make a decent fist of competing for the title. Cup finals every single one of them.

Many label the team as mediocre or doing the same thing over and over again. I disagree vehemently.  Using mediocre, as a label for Arsenal is WRONG.  If you disagree, please read the definition of mediocre in the dictionary.  IT DOESN’T APPLY TO ARSENAL.

Also I don’t think Arsenal do the same thing over and over again. We exited the Champions League last season because we were over confident and were already dreaming of the quarterfinal in that first leg at the Emirates. This season we couldn’t maintain focus for 90 minutes in the first leg. And you can go back into history to see that the stick many use to beat Arsenal is a broad brush and is largely undeserved.

However results are the be all and end all of football and when it comes to results in the Premier League and Champion League, Arsenal hasn’t been good enough.

But don’t forget – 2 FA Cups + 2 Charity Shield in last 2 seasons. Of course when it comes to Arsenal and the FA Cups, all of a sudden, results don’t matter. Make up your mind people. Don’t be a sheep.

Sunday 13 March 2016


So I decided to go to the Emirates at the last minute. Watch a match that I expected us to win. I took some visiting dignitaries to the stadium and I hope with my actions to stick two fingers at the boycotters. 

I sat at the North Bank and I must tell you the atmosphere was frigid. I was at the North End Upper and the people who sat next to me looked like your conventional old school fans and not the tourists that are so derided. They were as lively as dead fishes these ones. 

Fortunately, someone a few rows ahead of me tried to rouse the fans. I joined in enthusiastically with the obligatory "Ultimately his attempts and my attempts were without success. I made sure I joined in at every opportunity to the irritation of the guys either side of me. 

As I said earlier, I expected us to win. I was happy with our patient build up play as the opponents  set up their 2 banks of 4. Watford’s ambitions in my opinion was summed up by the fact that their goal keeper got a yellow card for time wasting in the first half. 

I was worried about Odion Ighalo as he looked very lively and up for it. I know his form has been ropey for a while and he was due a break at some point. I was hoping it wasn’t against us. But knowing Arsenal, it had to be. It was a nothing goal. As for the second goal in my opinion, it was a superb shot that I expected some intervention from Ospina but it was not to be. 

At 1 nil, I was certain and had the belief we could do it. At 2 nil it turned to hope and as the minutes ticked down, my hope started to ebb but never really petered out. I was hoping at the very minimum that we will force a replay. We had the chances to do that but it was never to be. 

We lost and we are out of the FA Cup. Catching up on a bit of post on social media and noticed all the comments that we will never score (WE DID) and how Arsenal always collapses (obviously it takes a Brain Surgeon like Ben Carson to understand this comment. I HAVE PICTURES OF VISITS TO WEMBLEY IN THE PREVIOUS 2 SEASONS and I am sorry these are not photo shopped pictures). So I don't understand the "we always collapse comment" sorry. 

Just outside the stadium, I spoke to an elderly gentleman who had been watching Arsenal since 1948. He was sad but was positive about the future of the club with or without Wenger. His attitude is quite unlike the IKEA & PRIMARK generation whose first reaction is Wenger Out. Yes it might be time for a change of club but calm your titties down. The time for change is the close season. If you are angling for a change now, your values are clearly at variance with that of the club. For me, Wenger finishes the season. Sits down with the board and decide what next. 

Is it possible for Wenger to remain if a majority of Arsenal stadium going fans turn against him? I'm not sure it is. But there was no banner today, there was no Wenger out and I didn't hear any boos. But the time to discuss a change is not now. This is the time to get behind your team, 

Yes we lost. Its one match. Irrespective of what you say. It was only one match. And it was only one match in a competition you said was unimportant when Monsieur Wenger won it back to back. So what is the hair pulling and collective gnashing of teeth about? It wasn’t important you said. So have the decency to be consistent and stop the shilly - shallying.

Yes we have lost 3 matches at home on the bounce. We always do this every season don’t we seeing as Arsenal are always consistent in these things. NOPE YOU ARE WRONG. The last time this happened was 2012. So please pep me with this "WE ALWAYS DO THIS EVERY SEASON" 

And to all those who think supporting your club is unnecessary, please clap for yourself. You are a great fan but have you considered supporting another club or changing to WATCH ONLY MODE (WOM). After all, you can't rouse the team and the idea of the 12th man is a myth.  But you want to enjoy trophies but you are not willing to put in the effort required of a fan. Great.

The next one is at the Camp Nou. I hope to write from there in midweek. In my delirium, I can see us defeating Barcelona. More unusual things have happened. And if you call yourself an Arsenal fan and are looking forward to your team losing, look in the mirror and ask yourself if you should be supporting another club side. 

Sunday 6 March 2016


I was on the train back to London from watching the Liverpool v Arsenal match at Anfield in January when I saw this guy in full Borrusia Dortmund regalia. I couldn't resist asking him questions at Euston Rail Station as I was curious why he was coming back from that match wearing the jersey of a 3rd team. 

He spoke not a word of English, he was German and obviously came on a pilgrimage to Anfield to watch Jurgen Klopp. I thought that was staggering although I had noticed this Bed & Breakfast Guest House a few metres from the Away end at Anfield advertising the availability of German breakfast "We now serve German Breakfast" the sign said :) Jurgen Klopp - boosting the economy of Germany & Liverpool at the same time. 

These two events gave me the motivation for today's write up. It made me wonder what turns managers into cult figures. On the field success? Personality? Looks? Combination of all 3? 

I suspect managers like Guardiola have attracted erstwhile Barcelona fans to support Bayern Munich. As he combines a lot of those factors - boyish good looks, passionate especially with his touch line demonstrations, successful as a player and now as a manager. A degree of steel and at the same time generosity of spirit and some manners / respect. 

I wonder if Jose attracted some Chelsea fans to Inter Milan or from the latter to Real Madrid? I will imagine Jose will have a huge cult following but it is not something that appears to be a topic attracting huge mention in traditional or social media. 

Sir Alex traversed football and had lots of ardent admirers beyond sports. I am not however sure if Sir Alex had a cult following beyond the Old Trafford faithful amongst traditional football nations and I exclude the USA from that list. I can imagine Paolo Di Canio (nutters always have a following) and Slaven Bilic (decent player, decent footballer, plays a musical instrument decently) have a following. I think this managerial cult following thing is perhaps a modern invention. 

Is Arsene Wenger a cult figure though? I remember regular visits to The Emirates in the 2007 / 2008. Arsenal had not won the league or a trophy or a few years but the 'Arsene love - in'  was still in full flow. "Arsene Arsene give us a wave" was the song from all around the stadium and Arsene duly obliged with a wave. Today, the tone has changed. Wengerout is the song on social media. The banners have appeared at some Arsenal matches. 

When Wenger arrived at Arsenal, it was a different world from the one we live in today. I doubt if any of the greasy spoon establishments around Highbury amended their menu to include any French cuisine. I wonder if any of the Grampus 8 football fans made the journey over from Japan to watch Le Prof. Also I doubt if Wenger is the type to attract a cult following like Klopp. From what I read about him, I think he will be deeply embarrassed to learn he has a cult following. 

Notwithstanding the man's self effacing attempts, it is true that he is loved by many especially for his achievements with Arsenal. He is also loved by many for changing the culture of the club and placing the club on a firm financial footing. Some also genuinely believe that he is good enough to remain as the Arsenal manager into the future.

I am of the opinion that the time for a discussion on Arsene's future or the next club manager  is in the close season. Not before. We can have side chats about which manager we want to see managing our club next, I think that is a legitimate topic of discussion for a club has been managed by the same person for almost 2 decades but that future should be for the next season or beyond and not the current one. 

Thinking forward into the future, I wonder if some Arsenal fans will decide to go and watch Monaco or Sevilla or Lisbon if Wenger decides that is his next stop. I think I will as I quite like the man and will love to combine a European trip to watch him again, to see how his team set up differs from the Arsenal he used to lead to see if his mannerisms are still the same or just for nostalgia. 

Thursday 3 March 2016


So the poor run of form continued. 3 games lost in all competition. 2 in the title race. Depressing. Soul destroying. Gutting. According to knowledgeable people though, the last time this happened was 5 years+ ago. Not exactly consistent with the ‘this is what they always do’ agenda is it?

I was dazed after the final whistle, couldn’t sleep although I was very apprehensive before the match and extremely nervous. I remember this same Swansea last year; I could swear the Gomis goal did not go in. Goal line technology thought differently. They went away with 3 points. A game I dare say we dominated and were looking to mount something of a faint title challenge.

Track back to December 2013, I was at the Emirates Stadium to watch Michu put two past Arsenal. I fell out of love with Carl Jenkinson that day and swore he will never make it at the top level because of what I saw during the match.  

Two seasons ago, we were in fine form and hoping to win the league and the same team came to The Emirates, scored two and grabbed a draw.

Our hopes have floundered many times at the Liberty Stadium the home of Swansea. Unfortunately the nature of football is such that it has its own superstitions, some teams are forever classed as bogey teams and so it is proving to be with Swansea and Arsenal.  Taking in isolation, I wont be as upset but if you consider our form and the result at Old Trafford, it is very disturbing.

Am I surprised they beat us – Yes. Am I disappointed and upset – Yes. But what gets me is the Arsenal fans who are now in free flow and in uncontrollable melt down. Please take a look at the title of this piece – ANY TWO YEAR OLD CAN THROW A TANTRUM.  So you are upset? What next?

Please tell me what exactly are you upset about? Wenger? Your team not winning a match? Your team throwing away the championship? That some fans still support the manager? What exactly are you throwing your toys out of the pram for? Do you yourself know? Have you looked in the mirror?

If you are certain the Arsenal team hasn’t changed, that the inadequacies remain. What has changed? Your expectations?  Your wish for the team? The one you imposed on the team? For me, my objective for Arsenal after the locust years is for us to be competitive and to challenge for the title every season and be in with a strong chance till the last day. If we were to achieve that this season, I will think it an okay season. Yes there have been lots of missed opportunities, the early losses at places like West Brom, the draws at places like Norwich and yes it will be tougher next season but if you predicted Chelsea or Leicester’s form this season, I will worship you for the remainder of my days.  Nobody knows what will happen next season. Yes make hay while sun shines but life itself is not 1+ 1.

I have heard from many friends who are upset about Wenger’s ‘jam tomorrow illusions’. The claim is that Wenger has been selling this line for 10 years and we are not buying anymore. At what time did you decide not to buy Wenger’s illusions? Start of this season? Now? When exactly? Why have you been willing - on a team to win the championship, a team you are 100% certain can never do it, led by a manager that will never win the championship. I struggle to see why. Have you looked into the mirror and thought perhaps I am the problem. “I KNOW THEY CAN’T DO IT, BUT I AM UPSET THEY ARE PROVING ME RIGHT” Yeah, sounds like my 2 year old.

I have seen many comments and read many articles about the team lacking the character, lacking the leaders, lacking the footballing abilities, lacking the mental strength to win the championship and I despair at these people. Are these things true of Man City, Chelsea, Man United, Real Madrid players and squad?  Why are they not doing it this year? Football is not linear. The best team does not always win and the worst team does not always lose.

What is the way forward? I don’t know. I am hopeful as long as it is mathematically possible that we can win the league. It is still a long way away before this hope is snatched away. In the interim, I will cling to my hope.

I side with the manager’s comments about setting aside talk of winning the league. Let us quickly learn how to win matches and earn points again. Lets hope this mental strength and character we lack is a virus because I think it is. For my money, I will bet on the Arsenal squad having a bit more of all the requirements (character, leaders, football abilities, mental strength) than Spuds & Leicester.

To those who want a change of manager, I will say hold fire till the end of the season. Now is not the time. Yes the fans got behind the players massively yesterday. Even in extra time, fans were very much on side. Yes there were boos after the match ended. I dare say that was understandable although I won’t do it. That run of poor result has to stop and the team & the club still needs the fans onside and that team and club includes Wenger for now.  So I am supportive, I am onside and I hope to will the team on.

Cheekily, I ask again, if you think Arsenal & Arsene cannot do it and they somehow manage to do it. Can you really look in the mirror and celebrate?

On to the little matter of the NLD. It pains me to admit that I think the Spuds are the favorites. Of course they don’t bottle things only Arsenal do. Faced with the opportunity to top the league and break a long held club record of number of wins on the bounce, they choke. (Cockerels of the strangled type). No Arsenal is the big story. What do I want from Saturday – A WIN. Can we? Yes definitely. We did it already this season in the Capital One Cup. Can we do it again? I hope so.