Arsenal Soapbox: same old Arsène, always moaning

Pete Sixsmith was right at half time to text about Sunderland being well on top despite the fluke Fabregas goal. But maintaining our good cop/bad cop routine, he is less understanding than a certain other Salut! Sunderland writer of Arsène Wenger’s autowhinge mode …

The Wenger Whingometer
usually goes to the top of the scale when the Metropolitan darlings have to visit the frozen north. Bolton, Blackburn, Stoke, Sunderland – Wenger hates them, with their gritty approach to football, their baying crowds and their pragmatic managers.

His post match interviews are a mixture of apoplexy and that superior look he can adopt, making him look like an incredibly snobbish llama.

This time, he was blaming the referee’s watch and the referee’s interpretation of yellow cards for his teams failure to take full points from a team and club who clearly do not live up to the exacting standards that the Gallic Prof has set at Ashburton Grove.

Of course, he might have said “It was a good game and Sunderland deserved their point”, or “Song was silly to get the second booking and I will speak to him about it” or even “We scored a fluke goal and missed a penalty. That’s the way football sometimes goes”.

But no, it’s not in Arsène’s makeup to do that. Blame the opposition, blame the referee, blame the climate, blame the bloody Chuckle Brothers, but never, ever, accept that the Sunderlands and Boltons of this world can give Arsenal a good game and take something off them.

Because we did give them a good game. We played the better football in the first half and had we taken one of the chances we had, we would have been level at half time with a secure base to attack them in the second half. As it was, misses by Onuoha and Bent and poor shooting by Malbranque and Henderson allowed them to build on the foundations that Fabregas’s fluke had given them early on.

Fabregas did well to challenge Ferdinand, but our defender was too slow to clear it. It’s unlikely that either Mensah or Da Silva would have allowed this to happen, and it shows, that for all his commitment and industry, Anton is still too prone to making costly errors.

Probably the best sight we could have hoped for after that was Fabregas trooping disconsolately down the tunnel. Superb player that he is, I didn’t want to see any more of him. Rosiscky, who replaced him, was to prove our saviour in the second half.

Other than the fluke, we looked solid for 45 minutes, with the impressive Bramble holding the defence together really well. Paul Wilson in today’s Observer, made an unfair jibe about Bramble, which again shows that if you give a dog a bad name, it will stick. A disappointing and unfair view of a player who has clearly washed the miserable experience he had at Newcastle out of his mind.

The midfield worked hard. Malbranque was outstanding, picking the ball up deep, bringing it forward and showing some sublime skills. He was assisted by Riveros who was always looking for the next pass or the next opposition run, a bit like a good snooker player who is always three shots ahead of his opponent. At times, the game did get away from him and he is rather one paced, but he has qualities that will serve us well as the season unfolds.

Henderson looked a better player than the much vaunted Wilshere, who was booked for one very poor challenge and continued to niggle away with little nudges and shirt pulls. He must have learnt that at Bolton last season.

Jordan was let down by his poor delivery of the ball from set pieces. It really was wretched and at least 8 corners and free kicks failed to get past the first man. He’s got to do better than this.

Elmohamady had an excellent game on the right. His heading ability is outstanding but there was nobody to pick it up. By my reckoning, he won just about every ball that was played up to him, but it is wasted if there is nobody to collect the second ball.

Bent never stops working and was once again asked to play up front on his own. Against two good central defenders it was a hard ask, but he was there, on the spot, in the final seconds, to lash home a thoroughly deserved equaliser.

The crowd were noisy and roused the players, but once again, it wasn’t a great turn out. It’s not the best time for a kick off and it was on (legitimate) TV, but Messrs Short and Quinn must wonder what they have to do to get it above 40,000. The Manchester United gate will be a good sign as to whether the Premier League bubble is in danger of bursting.

One group who did stand out in the crowd were the 25 Belgians in the North Stand. They had come to see Simon Mignolet (although it could have been Steeeed; Vermaelen is injured). They were seen by eagle eyed Joan Dawson scoffing burgers outside the ground and I imagine the pubs and clubs of Sunderland were being asked for Duvel, Leffe and Guulden Draaken beers as they celebrated yet another impressive performance by the young keeper.

On the way home I was entertained by Gooners ringing 606 to complain about Phil Dowd and then by a wonderful spat between Robbie (“I’ve played over 300 games in the Premier League, I have”) Savage and Arsenal Caller Dave, which took playground arguments to a new level – almost a “my broken leg was worse than his broken leg” at one stage. I can’t quite decide if Savage is an amusing broadcaster or a complete and utter t***. Probably the latter.

The Gunners always look a good side and even without Van Persie, Fabregas, Walcott and Vermaelen they still look like a top four team. But they haven’t got players who can bully the opposition a la Scholes and Lampard. It’s not Wenger’s style to do this now, although both Viera and Petit could and did do it. Denilson is the nearest they have got and I thought he was very impressive when he came on. Song is nowhere near clever enough to fulfill that role. None of the aforementioned players would have allowed themselves to be booked as he was.

At the end of the day, Arsenal have taken one point more than they did last year on Wearside. Then, they complained about Cana and Cattermole (with a little justification). This year we took two points less, but played better football. Funny old game, ain’t it?

40 thoughts on “Arsenal Soapbox: same old Arsène, always moaning”

  1. Martin Keown’s speciality, the arrogant but fairly blunt Stan Colleymore was saying last night, was to squeeze a forward’s back as hard as he could. Without the ref seeing of course. So he was another part of the phenomenon Jacob dismisses as “hard men of the 90s” distortion.

  2. Briefly Jacob – You yourself fit the definition of my above profile of a London football fan. Read your first post.

    Nobody is asking for, nor do we require “praise” from Wenger. I contest that an ape could understand that the thing that grinds everyone’s hump is Wenger’s perpetual bad sportsmanship in the face of a negative result. His incessant whining, and the manner in which he does it gets on peoples nerves. Are you with the picture now “mate”? If not, a good friend of mine is an extremely patient nursery school teacher, and she has agreed to give up 3 weeks of her time to help you to understand. I think it’s important to address you at the appropriate level.

    Why does he do it? Maybe it’s because he’s French.

    Saturday was an excellent example of how he seeks to blame officials when fortunes change. And he does so managing to resemble a llama. That me old son, is irritating. Phil Dowd was fair throughout and never put a foot out of place, yet he was to blame for our equalizer!! Not that old chestnut!

    There is a responsibility that applies equally to Steve Bruce as it does to Arsene Wenger, or any other manager for that matter. Graciousness and good sportsmanship, respect for your opposition. Weren’t they the cornerstone of the beautiful game in years gone by? Wenger represents none of the above. You’re right – he’s a bad loser – you said it yourself. Everyone hates to lose, but he is now being adversely judged not for hating to lose, but for his reaction to losing, or to things not quite going his way. Everyone is on a level playing field. There are misjudgements, bad officiating, ugly tackles, injustices in almost every game. Last season and the season before we had some appalling decisions against us that cost us dearly. But never did we fly the “victim” flag as blatantly as Mr Sourface.

    One thing both you and Mr Wenger have to face is the “invincible” days are long gone, and there isn’t a lame excuse or conspiracy theory that will bring them back.


  3. Wenger or Allardyce isn’t really a choice is it? Give me the snooty Professor above Neanderthal Sam any day. To think we nearly had him as manager pre Roy Keane!!
    I have no antipathy towards anyone or anything French (some of my best friends are French!!), and we’ll not agree on my view of Arsene as a serial moaner, but I have thoroughly enjoyed the discussions on this thread. Of course, Wenger was a mere beginner compared with Benitez. Now there was a moaner!! Pity he left Liverpool – let’s see what Roy Hodgson comes up with if we don’t roll over for them on Saturday.

  4. I can’t understand Jacob’s parochial view on Wenger ; the comments from the Sunderland fans have been balanced , surely he can see that Wenger will blame everything and everyone rather than apportion any blame onto his own team , or accept that the oppostion might just have deserved something !
    To make a point – in the laws of the game – added time of 4 minutes , means a minimum of 4 minutes and anything up to 5 minutes . If the referee had shown 5 minutes added time – that’s anything up to 6 minutes , and we would probably have snatched a winner . Be grateful for small mercies my friend .

  5. I’m sorry Pete but your “Hard men of the 90’s” jibe is typical of the distortions one has to live with when it comes to Arsenal… most of Arsenal’s cards in the “invincible” era and before was given to our players for petulance or retaliation… never for the kind of tackle that Paul Scholes and Gary Neville generally dish out with nary a token yellow to their names… I wonder why that is? Manu Petit even got sent off for asking a referee… “Why?”… that’s all he did and the muppet sent him off. Now petulance and retaliation is not right but it is evidence of dirty play either. The problem is that we can’t win… if we retaliate we’re dirty, if we don’t we’re soft… if our manager asks the referees to do their job he is whinging…
    Because a numb skull like Allardyce put it out there that Wenger presided over the dirtiest team in the premiership it has become accepted as truth. Vieira’s worst offence was to spit at Ruddock for taunting him for being French… Ruddock then announced to the world that Vieira smelt of garlic! Charming eh? And now you’re running with it!

    No one is saying that Arsenal are saints – least of all Wenger… I don’t want a team of saints. No one is saying that Wenger isn’t a bad loser either… I don’t a good loser at Arsenal… but wenger is no worse a loser than either Alex ferguson, david Moyes or Sam Allardyce… but all you ever read is Wenger whinger inanaities… tell me why that is?

  6. You think too much, Jacob. It’s nothing to do with him being French. And yes, he has created fine teams on a relatively limited budget, a fact which is accepted by most fans.
    He’s just a miserable ungracious person who looks for excuses whenever Arsenal fail to beat one of the so called weaker teams. He’s always been like that, with his hard men in the 90’s and his inability to see fouls by his players.
    Thank goodness we don’t have to play you again until March.

  7. Martin lived in London for 16 years and… he says that “THIS is typical of “THEIR” pettiness” Who’s “THEIR”? If you lived in London you’d know that London is made up of all kinds of people from every corner of the world… so whose your “THEIR”? It is typical of someone with an extremely feeble argument to resort to silly stereotyping.

    You say that you and others are having a “chunder” about Wenger? What are you “Chundering” about? That he didn’t praise your team… Why are you so desperate for praise from Wenger? The man had seen his ten men dominate Sunderland at home only to lose a goal in the very last second… and his reaction, which was entirely what you’d expect of a fiercely competitive man is but more grist to the idiotic mill of “Whinging Wenger”…

    And I repeat what I said… at the heart of all this Wenger nonsense is an ugly and disgraceful xenophobia. How dare this Frenchie tell us what is wrong with our game or how to play football… and how he dare rub our noses in it by creating teams that play blindingly brilliant football whilst spending less than everyone else in the league! How dare he tell us to our faces that our players are over rated, overhyped, overpriced and overpaid by refusing to buy British carthorses at overinflated prices?! How very dare he not even pay lip service to the inanities that pass for truths in the English game? … That is why you “chunder” but you can’t help but comment on a man that has basically redefined what a good manager is in English football even as you latch onto each distortion and outright lie… Just keep telling yourself and your fellow “chunderers” that he’s nothing but a whinger! You might just magic yourself into a parallel Universe where up is down and Alex Ferguson is full of “character”!

    You missed your calling mate… try comedy!!

  8. Wenger is unreal. Or, rather, he has no grip on reality. The FA has charged him with improper conduct after he confronted referee Atkinson at the end of the match to complain about the amount of extra time. Wenger, predictably, denies having done this, saying, “I complain to nobody.”
    So in the Reuters picture on the BBC website — — I guess all he’s doing is showing the ref his lovely new watch. At the top of his voice.

  9. A good and lively debate for sure, but I am starting to scratch my head at the imbalance between our perspectives and theirs.

    It would not be a surprise if I found out that Jacob was a blood brother of the llama, such is his inability to accept facts. We have all admitted that Wenger is all of the above in terms of intelligence, resourcefulness, hardworking, committed, loyal, visionary, and despite his sulking petulance at the end we still had the sack to say so. That, my friends, is a little more impartial than what’s on offer from the towering oaf that is Jacob. Get this – here’s an excerpt of his so-called superior intelligence.

    “Why exactly do Sunderland deserve a point? Because you’re a so-called small team? Give it a rest. You spent 13m on just the one player this season… Arsenal spent less on all their transfers! Sunderland have outspent Arsenal for, at least, the last 3 seasons… but you deserve a point when you could hardly get a shot on target all match. You don’t say”.

    Guys – listen up! I lived among London supporters for 16 years and this is typical of their pettyness!! “Our conkers are bigger than yours”!! “You never got a shot on target” “you spent more than we did”. “Ner ner nuh ner ner”. Is that the best you’ve got in your locker Jake? HTF did you interpret that we were happy with the draw because we’re a so-called “small team”? The truth is we were happy with the draw because for the first time in centuries we’re starting to give the better teams a run for their money. We’re happy with the draw because we played excellent football – and although I couldn’t care less either way, with the exception of small periods, I contest that we WERE the better team when you were down to 10, although not to the extent we were when we mullered you in the first half!! And we were ecstatic when King Bent scored in the last millisecond? Are you with us now Jacob – ok – good. I don’t care who’s club is bigger – genuinely I don’t. I would say that to a Crewe supporter. But to refer to us as small is as ridiculous as not being able to admit that your manager requires diapers after a hard fought match that results in less than maximum points!

    To say that Arsene gets stick because of his ethnicity is the biggest cop-out of them all. I’ve seen the race card pulled so many times, it’s almost depressing! It’s a barricade! It’s last ditch saloon in the face of constructive, extremely well-founded criticism! It’s like giving an apple to the Lord of the Manor – when all else fails lets get the old race card out!! He gets stick from the vast majority of fans both outside and somewhat inside of the Emirates because of his OH SO familiar verbal onslaughts after a game, and his inability to graciously acknowledge his opponents endeavour. There was no substance to his argument that time had elapsed. “A minimum of 4 minutes” is what is being selfishly missed! Once again – let’s not forget the time wasting exploits! If the shoe was on the other foot, do you think he would be ranting about the time after the game? Of course not.

    I disagree Pete – give me Sir Alex any day! I know he’s a bully, but at least there’s some character to him!

    For clarification purposes, I am not obsessed with Wenger – I’m just irritated by him. And for the record – and you can investigate this for yourself Jakeee baby – I do no have the monopoly on nausea when it comes to your un-siant-like manager. Oh yes – there’s millions of others having a little “chunder”.

    You were right about one thing though. It wasn’t a revelation that we played so well. We did so against Man City and Birmingham too. It was slightly an easier contest against you though.

    Finally – our season was blighted by injuries all of last season, only we don’t twist like Chubby Checker about it. Don’t tell us how to suck eggs.

    Good night Jacob – come sit in my chair again.

  10. I have no beef against Wenger ; in fact the things he said convinced me that he was bewildered , looking for excuses , after Sunderland outplayed Arsenal for long periods of the game . How dare a team from the lower reaches , have 65% possesion against the Arsenal . I was somewhat surprised myself at the standard of passing and intelligent running coming from the lads . Elohamady was excellent , superb in the air , just need to improve the final ball . same goes for Henderson – if he is going to be our dead ball specialist then he really needs to get the ball beyond the first defender . I lost count of the number of corners we wasted first half – in fact Onuoha miss must be down to the fact that he was surprised the ball reached him ! Special praise again for Bramble , who really looks the part – and the rejuvenated Steed who looks top quality . can’t wait to see Meyer get back into this team , if he can play and improve as he was before his injury I reckon he can be one the best central midfielders in the league .
    All in all an excellent game , and well done to Bent for getting the goal we deserved . Good comments from most of the |Arsenal blogs towards Sunderland too .

  11. I don’t think the modest demands of a midweek stroll should lead to astonishment at how pluckily Arsenal were able to play on Saturday. I have already acknowledged that you played well in the second half; teams going down to 10 often do.

    Questioning of Wenger’s selectivity is not confined to tabloid-fuelled opponents. Arsenal fans, including some having passing acquaintance with broadsheets, also raise their eyebrows from time to time, or at least admit that this is a trait of his that is open to criticism. Ungraciousness in defeat may even be part of the job specification, as one or two of you imply; that doesn’t make it any more attractive.

    What is attractive about Wenger is his passion for excellence and flair. I also admire his eloquence, in two languages known to me and maybe more, in a league where so many people find it difficult to express themselves in their mother tongue. And I’d take his myopia and ungraciousness any time ahead of the bullying boorishness of Sir Alex.

    Over and again, I have said that of the teams claiming divine rights to Big Club status, Arsenal is the one I appreciate the most. I wanted you, and certainly not Chelsea or United, to win the Premier title last season.

    And I hope I am not alone in feeling this has been a good and lively debate.

  12. Why are you so desperate for Arsene’s praise? He didn’t say anything bad about Sunderland, he said his team should have killed the game off, but why did you expect him to lick Sunderland arse? His job is to focus on his team. I didn’t see Steve Bruce say how well we played with ten men having played in the week away at a tricky ground against a good team, we’re not getting our knickers in a twist about it. I was at the game too and was rather baffled as to why your fans started singing about Wenger, why are you so bothered?

    As for the caller on 606, funny how Savage said 2 minutes before his misguided rant at Wenger that he was not prepared to criticise Allardyce as a football manager. If you want what Wenger really said about tackoing, read this link (I won’t hold my breath, you seem much more at ease with your tabloid fed ignorance). You deserved a point and good luck for the rest of the season.

  13. Martin…
    It’s really come to something when certain individuals are nauseated by a manager speaking out after his players have suffered 3 horrific injuries in the space of 4 years… and that doesn’t include the injuries sustained that merely lay his players up for weeks… all because a biased media see the foreigners at Arsenal as fair game for a kicking.

    What I find nauseating is the hypocrisy in English football.. when the press can damn the Dutch for doing what they did in the World Cup final and yet encourage the Boltons and Blackburns of this world. What I find nauseating is that when a foreign manager speaks his mind it is a crime but when Fergie and his acolytes bully the press and other managers it is OK.

    I’m sorry but at the root of the Wenger obsession is a rather sickening dose of good old xenophobia. A competitive manager will never be happy at conceding a late goal, never… but some how it is nauseating in a French manager even if it is OK in British managers. Owen Coyle moans all the time. David Moyes has never seen an issue he wouldn’t complain about… Allardyce is all mouth spouting off on issues he knows nothing about… but it’s always Wenger in the News even as his words are distorted and xenophobic and jealous fans swallow the distortions whole.

    Your nausea says more about you than it does about Wenger… the man isn’t a saint but who’d want a saint to manager their football club? What he is is intelligent, resourceful, hardworking, commited, loyal, visionary and …believe it or not… HONEST. And for most intelligent people that is good enough.

  14. I have to say that the idea that Sunderland “deserved” a point after being outplayed by ten men for most of the second half is one I find really, really funny.

    Why exactly do Sunderland deserve a point? Because you’re a so-called small team? Give it a rest. You spent 13m on just the one player this season… Arsenal spent less on all their transfers! Sunderland have outspent Arsenal for, at least, the last 3 seasons… but you deserve a point when you could hardly get a shot on target all match. You don’t say.

    It is a measure of the “whinging Frenchman’s” acumen, ability and intelligence that a team that has splurged more money on transfers still sees itself as inferior. It is one thing to be happy to score so late but it is another thing entirely to expect the person whose team conceded the last second goal to be all sweetness and light… Would Steve Bruce have done what you are demanding of Wenger?

    BTW Sunderland did play well in the first half but given that Arsenal had played a high tempo game on the Wednesday it was hardly a revelation. Also please note that Arsenal were without Van Persie, Walcott, Bendtner, Vermaelen not to mention Ramsey! So, like I said, rejoice for the point you got, I would do exactly the same but leave the sanctimony alone. Sunderland didn’t “deserve” a point even if you did play some good football… unlike the primitives of Stoke and Blackburn.

  15. C’mon Johnny D – Surely even you – from a biased perspective can interpret that we all acknowledge Wenger’s undoubted excellence. Read the thread son!! You ought to have the courage to admit that your manager is a nauseating complainer in the face of an unexpected result. Pete’s perfectly correct when he says that it was fantastic entertainment between an amazing side and an evolving side. I saw nothing dirty whatsoever, and the extra few seconds played at the end are gallactically forgivable considering your teams attempt to time waste at the end. Nobody’s saying he’s not a fantastic manager. His passion is admirable – what is not exactly cool is his sickeningly tiresome “sour grapes” when he’s been outdone. One last thing – I understand that after all the success and sexy football he’s brought to you during his reign, that you might jump to his defence if he came under fire. But he has been a nagging bitch for a few years when things haven’t gone his way. If Steve Bruce was as unclassy as Arsene after a negative result, I would support your criticisms of him – even if he does manage my club. That is what is known as discretion, of which you have little. Thanx.

  16. I don’t want to labour the point (which means I will) but my gripe with the Good Professor is that he cannot accept that a team can match his. Sunderland managers have, since time immemorial have accepted that we are sometimes beaten by a better team.
    Peter Reid and Roy Keane were excellent examples of managers who refused to blame the referee, linesman, fourth official etc. They accepted that football is not a science and both showed dignity when things went wrong. Reid’s reaction to the horror show by Paul Danson in Wenger’s first game as Arsenal boss was an object lesson in how to accept something that you knew was rubbish, but it’s better to say nothing.
    Bruce is getting better at that and will openly accept that sometimes you can lose a game/drop a couple of points because he and the team got things wrong. Wenger cannot do this, unless it is Manchester United or Chelsea and that is what rankles with me.
    I’m going for a lie down. I enjoyed the game. Two good sides and great entertainment. Let’s leave it at that, shall we?

  17. The point is Jonny D that most other managers don’t go on incessantly about fouls committed by players of other teams

  18. Why do you expect him to be unbiased? It’s not his job. His job is to be passionately behind his own team. Of course he’s biased. Why wouldn’t he be biased? Go on, show me the manager who speaks out complaining that his own team commit fouls?

  19. Wenger is undoubtedly a great manager, but what really annoys me about him is his willingness to condemn players from other teams for dangerous/rash/dirty challenges while being spectacularly blind when Arsenal players make those types of challenges. He wants the referees to protect his Arsenal players from these challenges, but objects when the referee protects players from other teams from Arsenal players foul challenges.

  20. What do you people expect from Wenger? He’s a massively competitive professional manager, he gets interviewed by journalists, he gives his honest and intelligent opinion, often he’s misrepresented. He’s speaking after a game when he’s furious that his side threw away two points – missed penalty – soft red card, best player limped off injured, and you expect bland generalities.

    It’s just the way he is. He’s a driven, passionate manager who produces teams that play skillful, watchable, football because of that. The other side of the coin is that he’s not always gracious in defeat. Tough. He’s a football manager, not a PR man.

  21. Don’t get to watch too many games live and this was one of the better ones. The Liverpool game is lve for us next week and I only hope we play as well again.

  22. Great article Pete. But I must point out that Wenger looks like a llama even when he’s not wearing that “holier than thou”, bombastic, irritatingly smug expression.

    Emmanuels life is so empty that he finds the time to attempt to defend the undefendable!! Case rested. Although on reading some of Arsenal fans blogs, I have to say they they are more circumspect than most. Most of them know that they were fortunate to get a point and that Sunderland played out of their skins.

    Wenger’s frustrations are more likely borne out of a failure to overcome a perceived underling, and it’s potential for shattering his seasons objectives. Could it be that he is irritated by the better quality of opposition outside the top four, and a previously guaranteeable 3 points is way more difficult to achieve?? Hence, rarely do his teddies remain in his pram.

    Everyone has to acknowledge his excellence in his approach to training, conditioning, diet and coaching. His teams are always a joy to watch, but his methods have been piggybacked and replicated, and it’s not so easy any more – is it Arsene me old mucka.

    His propensity for being “spectacularly wrong and ungracious” is starting to irritate the most humble and discerning of football followers. I mean what’s the mnessage here! Oh oh – we’re playing Arsenal – everyone roll over, tackle timidly, and let them show off their silkyness so that the lama won’t whine like a mature cabernet sauvignon. For Petes sake (clever) change the record Wenger.

    Finally – what a performance from the lads yesterday. Even if we hadn’t equalized I would have been very happy with that performance. This team has bigger balls than a bull – isn’t that the true definition of Bovine Bill?! Or maybe it’s my spongiform encephalopothy kicking in again!

  23. Tony:
    Pete and I have a healthy disagreement on Wenger. I live partly in France and was delighted that he was on the TF1 commentary team in South Africa. He has been, in so many ways, a breath of dresh air in English football. I dislike his ungraciousness in defeat, and his selective condemnation of foul or cheating play. But I love the way he tries to get his teams to play. I think you bossed part , not all , of the second half, by the way, but don;t quarrel too much with your analysis

    Madridviva’s posts have been allowed under Care in the Community provisions

  24. Why shouldn’t we moan about Wenger? He is the most ungracious of managers and seems to think that everything that he does is right and evrybody else is wrong. He plays football his way but he can’t accept that there are other perfectly legal ways of playing the game.
    He annoys me so much, partly because I know that my team will never be as attractive to watch as his team but he is so bloody supercillious.
    Why can’t he accept that Saturday was a good game, that both sides deserved a point and that maybe, just maybe, the referee got all of the major decisions correct? What is it about him that makes him unable or unwilling to do this?
    Answers on a postcard please ……..

  25. I thought it was ovines, not bovines, that followed one another blindly. If Emmanuel can’t tell one from the other, perhaps he also has trouble distinguishing between praise and opprobrium for Wenger.



  28. I’m a gooner who came up for the game. First of all I really liked the atmosphere around the ground – there was a real community feel to the place, with the town coming out to support the team. You don’t really get that in London as tickets are very expensive and anyway impossible to get.
    I thought that Sunderland were the better team in the first half, and that we were lucky to go in with a lead, but that we played you off the park in the second half, even with ten men. Should have won, and it was a real sickener to concede so late. However, no complaints, it was probably a fair result, and other top teams will drop points at the SOL.
    Wenger does moan, but usually with reason. Arsenal do get subjected to some pretty dodgy stuff, for example from Neanderthals like Fat Sam. This was not the case yesterday, I would add. Also you may find them giving as good as they get this season. Also remember that Wenger’s teams do play some pretty amazing football, so maybe you should allow him to take the moral high ground when his players get kicked by thugs. Most gooners will tell you he is genius, having kept the Arse competitive on a fraction of the resources available to others.
    Good luck with the rest of the season.

  29. You nutheads are just brain-damaged and obsessed with that ugly frenchie nuthead at arsenal. Why? Must be your inferiority complexes allround in england and jealousies. You’ll never win the WC. Nevermind, keep enjoying your lust for everything french!! Viva sepanyol!!!

  30. Arsene Wenger is too good for English football. He is too intelligent for one thing. None of the people criticising him actually use his actual words or engage him in debate on his actual views all they do is twist what he says… it’s all whinger this, whinger that! So suddenly asking for the use of video evidence to retrospectively punish bad tackles is sacrilegious (till a Sunderland player has he leg snapped then the tune will change) and saying that bad and intemprate tackling should be stamped out of the game is call to ban all tackling… nevermind that he actually said that he enjoys a skillfull tackle as much as he enjoys a brilliant pass!!

    None of what he said would even begin to attract any controversy if he wasn’t (a) a Foreigner and (b) too nuanced and intelligent for a football community made up of too many dim numpties. But Hey! why not jump on the bandwagon… after all you’re a hard Northerner! (talk about using a stupid stereotype to insult ones self.) Genius

  31. Emmanuel can clearly read but may not use this skill often. Wenger has attracted easily as much praise here as criticism. That doesn’t make it unfair, obsessive, empty or cliched to challenge him when he is spectacularly wrong or, worse, ungracious.

  32. Do you people ever get tired moaning about Arsene Wenger. Every idiot in England on the radio, newspapers, blogs and television including every club manager it is Arsene Wenger this and Arsene Wenger that! Are your lives so empty? Isnt it that 99% of people in and around football in England have single digit or at most double IQs? Why this obssession with one person? You are all sounding more and more deranged! Give it a break! There is no need to behave like bovines i.e follow whatever one idiot is saying about Wenger!

  33. My claim to fame – picture of me on the back page of the Sunday Post giving the Savage the Winston Churchill salute at Filbert Street for getting John Oster !?! sent off!

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