Load Up the Cannon

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Please excuse the lack of activity since the last post, you see I’ve only just finished a self-imposed media embargo so I could concentrate without distractions on banging my head against the wall.

Once again in a very short time frame we’ve self-combusted, thrown in the towel in a pathetic fashion and exited two competitions, one I feel we had a realistic chance of winning, the other the Champions League which at a most basic level is just plain nice to be a part of. At least it is when we don’t record our heaviest loss in the competition it is.

Since then the Emirates cogs have been ticking over, providing Gooners with much food for thought both on and off the pitch. Arshavin, Ju Young Park, Yossi Benayoun and Marouane Chamakh all played for the reserves a few days ago against Norwich. The little Russian nabbed a brace, Park and Yossi played excellently by all accounts getting a goal each, and starlet Benik Afobe scored to round off a 5-0 victory.


One of our most expensive ever signings scores against a 'keeper no one's ever heard of in a reserve game.

Looking at the positives here, this was an opportunity for these fringe players to vamp up their confidence with an easy run out. It’s just so hard to believe that a year ago Andrey got the winner against Barcelona, Chamakh’s dip in form was deemed temporary, and Benayoun and Park were names few would have thought would ever be wearing an Arsenal jersey.

Elsewhere deep inside the Arsenal vaults, the fat cats have released a statement regarding ticket prices for next year. Nobody knows if their initial plan was to hike them up further–they have a record of breaking promises–but they haven’t, and they might be cursing the rotten form of the playing staff for effectively backing them into a corner.

There’s just no way they could justify–to what is already a pretty peeved mob–yet another increase in tickets after the recent run of games. So as it is, there’s a freeze on normal tickets for the 2012/13 season, whilst Club Level prices increase by roughly 2%. Let’s see how loyal  the “prawn sandwich brigade” are when it’s FC Klashnikov 74 in the Europa League and not Barcelona coming into town.

Yet we’ll only be playing such ridiculously named Europa League outfits (I made it up by the way) if we finish just outside the top 4, which, yet again, has become a polished turd that Arsene and the board are trying to reward us with  as a sign of a successful season, namely because it’s the best we can hope for.

But it’s not. Finishing 4th is not a success or a victory. It’s natural to want to finish as high as possible but actually winning something, that’s a real success.

Those voicing concerns that we won’t be able to hold onto our best players nor will be able to keep signing the best players if we exit this entirely made up top 4 power group might need to look back over the last few years to see that ultimately it doesn’t matter, at least where Arsenal are concerned. Our best players have continued to leave us (mostly for the lure of more cash) and the best players have continued to ignore us (mostly for the lure of more cash).

It points to the fact that most modern day footballers follow their wallets. And yes we can and should overhaul our financial dealings but the sad fact is that no matter what we offer there are other clubs that can simply offer more. What can change however, is our football style and mindset, but that’s a job for Arsene right now as he’s the one in charge.

And this really sticks in the throat to admit it but one only need look at Tottenham to see how unimportant 4th place is. Their ascent up the table to media labelled “title challengers” was all achieved with only one previous top four finish. They might have spent cash, but it seems to have spent within their means. The difference is, they’ve bought well and are playing confidently–two things we simply haven’t been doing recently–without needing 4th place to act as some sort of prerequisite.

*washes mouth out with soap*

That all links nicely to the final part of this post: Spurs. Ladies and gentlemen, this is a big deal. For the first time in almost two decades they’re coming to our ground with a swagger that suggests they don’t think they’re going to win. No, they think they’re going to batter us. If we are going to start moving up the league and finishing as high as we can, then we need to erase the last few games from our minds and start playing for the pride in the shirt. There’s not much else left to play for. And there’s no better time to show that then in front of our own fans on Sunday.

That cannon on our chest is there for a reason. It’s there to obliterate little cocks that stand on basketballs.

Come on the Arsenal


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34 thoughts on “Load Up the Cannon

  1. Mark no use of making excuses about arsenal and its demented manager. Why do you not accept the fact the team is simply not good enough to compete at the highest level, a fact sheet of last seven frustrated years tell the story. I have predicted at the start of the season that there will be no trophy as long the manager and the present crop of more than dozen shits remain in the team. Even if the team manages to grab the fourth spot it would be no consolation for the diehard gooners world over.

  2. @rehan siddiqui
    Wrong. We wanted first but we will now take fourth. No, it’s not the new trophy but dropping out of the last Champions League qualifiers position would mark a new low that many of us embittered though we be would like to avoid.

    All that aside this is the battle for North London, we have got to bring whatever is left in the tank and leave it on the field. No excuses or blaming the refs. I’m assuming the Emirates pitch will also not be an issue however, our lack of defensive cover may be. Who’s at fault there? No matter, we must win with what we have.
    Come on you Gunners!
    BTW: Thanks for the fresh posting Mark.

  3. I agree partly agree with you Rehan and disagree with Mark our major problem is not our tactics or choice of players. We have too many mediocre players even if we had every player healthy, we have 1 players that scores 50% of our goals.

    The reason why Fab, Nasri left was not because of money but for a chance to win trophies. Yes some players will leave for money , but others talented players will come to a team which is well managed and with ambition to win trophies.
    3 or 4 years ago David Villa talked openly about coming to Arsenal before 2008 of as we know Wenger and the board did not do anything about it.
    I do not think today a world class player will express interest in coming to Arsenal. We are now seen as a feeder club .
    Finishing 4th would be a great achievement with these players , and we would avoid a catastrophe. On the other hand if we finish 4th, we will back next year with most of these mediocre players with no prospect of winning the league or CL.

  4. I am as frustrated as everyone else by the teams lack of form. OK they are not world beaters, but I think they are better than current form suggests. I still believe Wenger will turn it around, although its time to dip his hand in the coffers. What is apparant is that they lack confidence and the supporters are showing there frustration. If ever we needed a positive attitude now. Everyone (even the anti Wenger brigade) need to get behind the team now. We’ll all feel a lot better on Monday if we get a result on Sunday.

    Come on you Reds!!!!

  5. Can he do that? Isn’t the transfer window closed? Well if it is true for whatever reason he did not fit in . Especially his lost so much confidence and dropping his head when he made a mistake, just a broken player. This is a ruthless league only toughest mentally survive . Hence Chamakh should be gone too.

  6. Russian transfer window is different because their season starts and ends at different times to the rest of Europe. Honestly can’t understand why they don’t want to play in Moscow in January!

    Good luck to Arsh.If nothing else there is the four goals at Anfield to remember his Gooner days. That and the goal against Barca.

    ‘arry is getting all moral about the abuse Adebayor is copping. Apparently when he played for us and it was the Spuds singing it was different.

    Looking forward to the game. It’s actually on at a reasonable time here in Oz so will be staying up and fingers crossed we can put a dent in their grand plans for world or at least north london domination.

    Anyway here’s the lineup:
    Almunia, Djorou, Squillaci, Vermeulen, Coquelin, Song, Ramsay, Benayoun, Walcott, Chamakh, Park

    What could possibly go wrong?

  7. @mark,
    Nice piece, stirs a bit of passion in you at the end, but then i just keep remembering the headline ‘ load the cannon’ …….load it with what….I dont care whether its a grizzly or a little cock on a basketball, you wont hurt it firing blanks.
    Sorry to be so downbeat but Im just not confident of this team puttibg it up to anybody right now, let alone our fierce rivals.
    The whole game will hinge on Oxlaide- Chamberlains ability to create, Walcott must stay benched.
    By the way Im sure your all following Ryos progress at Bolton, won the fa cup game for them last week, Coyle is waxing lyrical about him so have a look if you can.
    As usual Il be donning all my Gunners attire in the hope of a fighting inspiring performance tomorrow. But I wont be holding my breath.

  8. And guys come here tell me to trust wenger, no flipping way!!!!
    Isn’t this the same as the cesc and nasri transfers, when we were told that they would not be leaving, YET they promptly left, now the same thing happenes with ashavin he leaves and no replacement. This just goes to show that nothing will change in the summer as long as the same people remain at the top
    So we loan out ashavin because he’s not playing well BUT all the crap still remain
    walcott for sure chamaka, Djourou, gibbs, and those out on loan.
    Evey week we do more and more crap and this has to go down as the worst were scraping for 4th and need players BUT we let them leave.
    The question i want to ask wenger is this How long did you confirm that ashavin wanted to leave??? am sure it would have been in JAN and as one bloke said on another blog, you refuse to buy so you waited until the window closed to sell him.
    wenger you have totally lost the plot and need to go!!!! WHAT are you doing have you gone mad?????

  9. Guys am mad as hell, how could we loan out ashavin when the other players are so much crap???
    wenger ruined ashavin because he played him out of position so wenger must take most of the blame, walcott has been total crap 6 years @ arsenal and no improvement@ all, why not sell him too??????
    am mad, mad, mad !!!!!
    the board and the manager has totally lost it they need to go!!!

  10. Kel,

    Wenger should go to where? Please stop dreaming and get behind your team. Don’t be naive as Arsene Wenger was and still the best manager for us. In Arsene I truly trust.

    Arsenal 2 Sp**rs 0

  11. Some thing must be fundamentally wrong and should we loose this game on Sunday,someone must atone for the result and this is Wenger. Arshvin has had his lows and i think age is catching up but i would rather have him on the pitch any day in an advanced position than a useless Ramsey flattering to decieve allover the pitch with his useless runnings. I would still have him on the pitch than have Rosicky. He never had any well timed pass in the Milan game and always passed to the heels of defenders useless old crap. PSG wanted Chamakh why didnt this fool of a coach let the guy go and i hear he is in contention to play. Guys the previous emirates game is still vivid in my eyes. It was Chamakh who cost us the game while we had a chance to score and go ahead . He blew himself offside and stopped running. That was the beginning of my hate towards him. We need two strikers on the pitch and i expect Park. If loaning Arshvin is mean’t to create room for new signings i welcome it but you replace him with who. What is Ramsey still doing for heavens sake.What about Squillachi and Almunia why do we spend exorbitant salaries on people not even playing for the club. what management is that. Congs for Adebayor he seems sincere in his interview about the plight of the club. I just hope Wenger doesnt loose this game because even a draw wont save us from 7 place by end of the weekend games.

  12. @ opus
    Please o Please don’t get me started you flipping SHEEP
    I’ll reserve a good response to you after tomorrow.
    And of course I’ll always back the team because they didn’t buy themselves wenger assembled all the rubbish we have, did you see how much money Squillaci is getting per week, an you called me naive.
    Its fans like you who have us in this shit street at the moment BY the way chelsea won………….

  13. @kel,
    Hang in there dude. As much as you love your club there is nothing you can do.
    Somebody else is behind the wheel and we’re passangers on this bus.
    Get on, pay ther fair and try not to go totally whacked-out kemotherapy bald during the trip. Good luck to the little ruskie, we still have to win come the morrow. A draw will only be good for 6th place.
    Well my plan for tommorow is to wear my 2007 home Adebayor #25 jersey.
    Hoping for some reverse voodo. Truth is it cost me 100 bucks and it never leaves the closet anymore. if we win I’ll sport it until we lose. If he scores and we lose I’m gonna burn the fucker in my driveway.

  14. Kel,
    Like lefty sez, weve no control and Iv come to terms with that long ago, the more you vent and, often, the more valid your point is, the more you wull convince people like Opus to rally in behind Wenger and the board….its fucked up I know, but Iv done everything from posting our Sales to Purchases the last ten years to listing the mediocre player sky high wage packet policy we have…and quite often people dont even bother reading it, let alone reading it in its proper context….you write 1000 words with the historical evidence to back it up and you get ten lads telling you your a doomer and in Arsene he trusts, and all its is is a glorification thing on his part, he feels the same as you he just wants to be better than you thinkin hes a real fan and your a moaner.
    The fact is Iv been saying this is where we would be for five years now and even had Andy questioning my loyalty to the club, guess what I was bang on, yet its done me or my club any good, were still where we are and if I lzt it get to ne I think I could explode. For yourself, you have to now take a deep breath breath and relax and know there are thousands, hundreds of thousands who share your opinions, whilst there are millions who are feeling the way you feel even if they disagree with you. Dont sacrifice what you love about football and Arsenal and end up becoming bitter…as right as your comments are some people find denial an easier reality to exist in, thats just the way it is bro, but youv got to hold on to your own ideals, youl never force them on someone.
    Like I said I agree alot with the stuff you post and itd be a shame to see you become sour, thats all.
    I today feel how you feel, I know the dreadful REPEATED errors being made by the men in charge, but all I can do is sit in front of that screen in two hours and channel my positive energy through it….the alternative is to throw that screen through the window.
    In advance of the game itself.
    Id love to see a two man striking partnership. Not gonna happen.
    Id love to see Song with fire in his eyes in the tunnel before the game and for him to turn Parker upside down but win the ball.
    Id love to see us manage an attack that didnt take 4mins to get from our half to the edge of their box before walcotts feet desert him again, or ramsey passes it to row z.
    Id love to see no injuries to our players without even contact from an opponent.
    Id love to see Gervinho have a shot.
    Id love to see 3 Arsenal players in the box at once!
    Id really love to see Squilachi and Djourou run in to eachother in the warm up so that their both ruled out and cant flop when their asked to do even the most basic of defending.
    Id love to see some pride, some sweat and some bottle. Il guarantee you this…if we have at least 5 players walking in at halftime with a sweat on, we wont be beat, if its the usual, where it looks like a fat dude playing fifa for five mins has done more of a workout that Song, Walcott and Arteta…well then were in for another hiding.

  15. Szczesny, Sagna, Koscielny, Vermaelen, Gibbs, Rosicky, Song, Arteta, Walcott, Benayoun, van Persie.

    Nothing else matters today so let’s get behind the team – come on the Arsenal!

    ps @Leftcoast: Burn that shirt!

  16. @shambo: looks like they heard you mate. Hope we score more and win it comfortably. btw, Bale will do well at the olympics, in diving.

  17. Best weve played in 5 years. Brilliant spirit, the pressure on the ball high up the pitch with rosicky, benayoun and in particular WALCOTT with the squeeze play behind from Arteta and Song was just brilliant.When you work that hard to get the ball back your emphasis and tempo on the ball is 5 times that and thats why we were so good today.
    Lets go out next game and play this way, and then the next game after, all the way to seasons end. Thats the standard of performance required when you put on an Arsenal jersey.
    Everyone upped it and did their job. Brilliant day for us fans!

  18. Excellent, brilliant ……

    More on this later, for now Ramsey should remain a sub, Rosicky and Benayoun are way more experienced. Experience wins the day for us.

    VPs goal was completely ill… I screamed like a mad person
    Fantastic performance and a Walkout hat-trick?
    Breathtaking …….

  19. I STILL don’t know who these guys are – they confound me this season. But…

    WHAT A FEELING!!! I haven’t felt like this in a looong time. This is SO SWEET and SOOO NEEDED right now.

    I don’t know how long this feeling will last, but I actually believe we can a +5 GD against Milan and how crazy is that? As crazy as being shut out of our last two matches, going down 0-2 against our bitterest rivals AT HOME and then coming back with FIVE unanswered goals.

    Vintage Arsenal (right down to the crap defending and being caught on the counter).

    Theo Walcott – welcome back!!! Please don’t make this a one time cameo and disappear again. If you’ve finally found your scoring boots, keep them on and don’t think so much. As Yoda said, “There is no try, only do”.

    Alex Song – some of the most brilliant passing of any campaign.

    Robin van Persie – really what is there left to say anymore? That goal is quintessential of his season. Absolutely perfect, unstoppable, brilliant curler that will wear out my PVR. He was in this match, as has been his wont much of this season – absolutely unplayable. And he could have a hat trick.

    Arsenal, Thank You, Thank You, Thank You, for a most incredible experience. I will never forget this day.

  20. Kel,

    Hide yourself in shame. You wanted us to lose. I laugh in my native language.
    kel, Arsene still the right man? In Arsene I truly trust.

  21. @ Opus
    off one result are you mad???
    sec i don’t want the team to loose
    and i must congratulate the team for the win BUT this performance don’t fool me one bit and noway is wenger the man to lead us forward he’s lost it totally the players hipe themselves up for games like these so his job is easy.
    BUT good performance none the less

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