Arsenal back in action + Gilberto tributes deserved

Can you believe Arsenal are back playing football this weekend?

I can’t. It seems like forever since I got to watch the boys play. Sure, there was Euro 2008 to fill the void between now and then but it didn’t quite compare to the feeling I get when I watch an Arsenal game. I’m not from London, I’m not even English, but the love I have watching Arsenal play cannot be rivalled by anything else in my life. I’m sure a lot of you feel the same way.

Anyway, I got a bit off track there. My point is that Arsenal are back in action tomorrow. Sure, it’s only Barnet, but those lucky enough to watch the game will get to see the both Carlos Vela and Aaron Ramsey for the first time. Exciting stuff.

I’m not sure I’ll actually get to watch the game but if I do I’ll have a little bit to say about it on Monday. In the meantime if you’re planning on seeing it be sure to let myself and the other readers of the blog in on how things went. Cheers in advance.

Other items of interest today are pretty short and sweet.

Gilberto’s Silva’s transfer to Panathinaikos was made official on the Arsenal website today. I think it’s interesting to note that there are all sorts of tributes posted all over the website. Compare that with a brief article and Arsene Wenger’s “we’re comfortable with him leaving” comment about Alex Hleb’s exit and I have to say it makes me smile a little bit. It’s pretty fair too considering Hleb is already kissing badges in Catalunya. Fool.

Anyway, Gilberto absolutely deserves all the tributes he gets when you think about the way he has gone about his business in the six seasons he has been with Arsenal. Thierry Henry he may not have been, but a truly great man and wonderful professional he was and remains. Thanks Gilberto, I’ve thoroughly appreciated everything you’ve done for this club.

There’s not much else going on today apart from another flip-flop from Andrei Arshavin. Make up your mind buddy.

So, enjoy your weekend, especially if you get to watch Arsenal play. Let me know how it goes and I’ll be back on Monday.

Have your say on Gilberto, Hleb, Arshavin or Arsenal v Barnet by leaving a comment.



  1. good luck Captain Grubber, you were a true leader and your silence spoke louder of your good character. All the best matey!!!

  2. Yeah well done big guy U deserve it THANKS FOR what u have given to OUR GR8 CLUB U put in your all everytime GUD LUCK GILL 😉
    He was A good player and A even better person its gr8 to see he played for ARSENAL.
    Hey does anyone know if they are showin the game on the tv in QUEENSLAND ?

  3. its an honour for us Gilberto that you played for Arsenal! A Great Player and a Great Character. The invisible Wall!! I will get to see the game tomorrow and cannot wait. players like Vela and Ramsey are in the squad aswell as Almunia, Sagna, Clichy, Bendtner and Walcott. Alot of academy players like Ogogo, Lansbury, Rodgers, Barazite, Fonte and Nordveit are in the squad too. It’ll be interesting to see who AW picks for the Barnet game.

  4. I don’t think Wenger makes mistakes all that often, but I think he must take some responsibility for Gilberto’s decline as a player for Arsenal. Gilberto was probably our best player in the 06/07 season. He showed all the necessary leadership qualities to inherit the captaincy, before seeing the armband handed over to William Gallas. Gallas, while an excellent footballer, doesn’t have the feeling for Arsenal FC that Gilberto had. Of course I now have to contradict myself and say that in hidsight Wenger was right as we have developed a lot with a more dynamic and all-action CM in the form of Flamini. But still, I don’t think that Wenger handled Gilberto’s final year at the club very well.

    I was just watching ’49 – the Unbeaten Run’ yesterday and what struck me was that nearly every player in the XI was at their peak in terms of age and performance, and I’d say the team was on average around 26-27. I like that we have a young side, but maybe it is worth having someone at their peak in the coming season.

  5. And one more thing…with our current central midfield difficulties, I do wonder why Arsene didn’t send Diarra on loan to Pompey for six months rather than a straight out sale.

  6. Gilberto,oh oh! Good luck,we salute you the loyal player which is a rear occurence in modern money filled football and granted,the dicisions of the manager not to start Gilberto was partly responsible for his decline of form but isn’t a manager supposed to make such “diffucult” decisions? All said,guess everybody understands properly,will watch Panathinaikos to cheer him,to see how well he plays but surely when i watch Milan,won’t care much unless they are playing Arsenal! lol!!!!

  7. Gilberto is a great man and a great athelete. he’s a proffesional unlike some whining babies that call themselves footballers. wherever you go Gil, we are behind you and we will continue to be your fans.
    What is going to happen to our defence? it is so weak as it is – actually it is joke to call it a defence and i don’t see why people want us to buys strikers and midfielders even after it was obvious that it is our mediocre defence that cost us titles we could have easily snatched. In my opinion, wenger is not buying a midfielder to replace flamini and gilberto. he’s got options in Diaby, Denilson and Song who to me are much better than most midfielders in england. They may still be young but they are real good. Personally, i really want to see Song take over the flag from flamini. He is a player who really works hard for the team whenever he gets the chance. We also saw him defend remarkably well towards the end of the last season and if you haven’t noticed, he has some defence-splitting low passes which we really need. To see Song as a regular starter may be too optimistic because Diaby at his peak is way much better(not defensively though) but to be fair, he should get some significant amount of games. for the flanks, if rosicky decides to shake off this weird ‘injury’ of his and ebuoe is dropped back to back up sagna then there shouldn’t be much trouble there. RVP and Ade should play together upfront with walcot and bentner as back ups. in short, i don’t want Barry coming to arsenal or any other established mid fielder coz i think it is time for our lads to show what they are made of. Wenger, just give us a good central defender an seriuos back up for clichy and try your best to sell senderos and hoyte by next week and we will be set to take the titles we deserve. oh, don’t forget to give adebayor the pay rise you promised coz he is one of the major keys to us winning a title this season.

  8. TDP-you ask why didnt Wenger send Diarra to Pompey then? ha ha ha!!!
    Did Diarra and Pompey want a loan then,didnt it look like Arsenal had a congested and rich midfield? Didnt Wenger then believe in his improved Flamini not knowing probably that the boy dreamnt of leaving when he was wanted like they wanted him to go when he wasnt “so wanted”,didnt he walk on a free when he joined Arsenal and his former club branded him traitor? The list is endless!
    Wenger isnt infallible,we love him but you need to see that he cant get some things right all the time. And hey,dont you think we need someone in defence? When it shows up in the campaign,dont say you never saw that,its a price we should be gettig ready to pay incase it happens.

  9. Of course we need reinforcement in defence. What I was saying regarding Diarra was in context: In January, with Flamini’s future far from assured and the risk of him leaving in the summer, and with gilberto completely flat and devoid of confidence, perhaps an insurance policy of a loan deal to Pompey with a view to a permanent deal might not have been a bad idea. Personally, I didn’t like Diarra’s attitude and he isn’t the sort of player I would like at Arsenal.

    I see that Wenger today is reluctant to spend on an established player as it would ‘kill’ the chances of some of his youth. But I’m afraid for all his faith in youth, when some of them make it and have their head turned, they don’t have the same loyalty to him and an experienced player in the centre of the field is what we need right now. It doesn’t mean the youngsters don’t get game experience; there is plenty of games for that, but in order to challenge for honours and see it through next season, and in the light of losing half of our first choice midfield, I really think this is the way to go.

    Defence is an area I think we’re all a little concerned about. The problem is that Wenger doesn’t want to drop either Toure or Gallas.

  10. Hi guys..

    A Chelsea fan here.

    Losing Hleb, Flamini & Gilberto is not exactly great news for you guys, but life has to go on.
    Arsenal should seriously get in some good defenders and midfielders to challenge for titles.

    I understand the limited spending and limit on salaries will help wipe out your loans and stuff in the long run.
    However, Winning titles can help you wipe out your loans even faster.

    Winning the EPL or the UCL is worth a lotttttttt of money.TV, Sponsorships etc make it even more lucrative.

    Developing players, bringing them through the ranks etc are fine, but whats the use if they get fed up of not winning or because of the salary cap and go off to greener pastures???..Thats a big loss to the club. You develop players and when they are ready to peak they move away to other clubs.

    Consider for example, Fabregas. lets say next season Real comes in for him with an offer of around 160K a week. He would certainly be tempted to leave as he knows the salary cap at Arsenal isnt going to be lifted and Arsenal isnt ivesting much in bringing established stars to the team.
    Fabregas will have ambitions to win stuff, earn big bucks and so on.If Arsenal doesnt share the same vision, whats the guarantee that he will stick on???

    Chelsea, Liverpool and United invest 50 to 60 million each year on eastablished stars. Arsenal should also invest well to keep up.

    you cant seriusly expect the academy stars to just pop up and deliver from the start. They might take 2 or 3 years to setlle in. And like I mentioned earlier, some big clubs could come in with better offers and take them away.

    I am sure most of you guys know Arsenal FC much better than I do. Looking back, you will certainly realise that Arsenal had their most successful seasons with established players running the show and not kids.

    Viera, Bergkamp, Ljunberg, Pires, Campbell, Ashley Cole, THIERRY HENRY, Gilberto.

    Arsenal should invest in stars. They bring quality & EXPERIENCE with them. Such an investment will bring in benefits{On & off the field}

    Just a simple calculation based on Fcats I ve read about the money in Football today

    Winning the UCL is worth 35 Million plus Bonuses and other fcators like Sponsors payemnt and all. It could reach upto 40 milion

    EPL..40 Million plus Bonuses..and sponsors payment n stuff could reach 50 to 60 million

    FA Cup & Carling Cup additional

    Thats around 100 Million or more up for Grabs if your team puts up a good showing on the field.

    off the field, the impact of stars..Just look at what David Beckham did for real madrid

    Stars are Brand names today and they can be marketed easily. Merchandise, promotions, increase of fan base and much much more..God knows how many potential millions are up fo grabs here. and if arsenal wins titles regularly, the millions here increase as well.

    Anyway i wish your team all the best for the new season and looking forward to seeing some good football from you guys.


  11. i had left with one comment but going to another blog, i couldn’t stand it anymore to see people throwing heavy words at adebayor so this is what i wrote:

    “i think we people are taking this adebyor issue too far. we call ourselves football fans or better still arsenal fans but i must add that we are very ‘shallow’ minded fans. why am i saying this? most of us understand football quite well but we have no clue how the world of football runs or is run. we must learn to seperate the business side of football and the sport side of football very clearly. what we watch on the pitch, the goals, the chances, the tackles, the misses, the celebrations and all that thrill is the sporting side of football that we should chatter about as much as we want. the business side of football deals with contracts worth millions of pounds. this contracts are signed between the club and the player and their lawyers oversee everything – there is no part for the fans in it. we don’t even have a fucking clue on how big the contract is or how many pages it is made of and whenever a player transfers or wants to transfer guess who are the first to point fingers? that one person who got no fucking clue of how a contract looks like or how exactly the selling and buying of players is done..
    for instance, ade says he wants to move away from arsenal because a club wants to pay him almost thrice as much as he is currently earning. if ade was your real brother, providing food, health care, shelter and education for all of you in the family what would you tell him? “stay in arsenal and earn 60k per week instead of berca who are offering you 100k per week because you must remain loyal!” FUCK! shall we use our brains for a sec here? if adebayor had remained ‘loyal’ to Metz or Monaco or that tiny club in africa would he be where he is now? lets get this into our heads that footballers just like doctors, teachers and soilders are proffesionals. Yes, they entertain us but it is their job to play football. there is nothing like loyalty in football. where is Henry? was he loyal? where is Gilberto now? wasn’t he loyal? you see, all football clubs work in the same way, they do business and the owners always want to make millions every season. they will only be “loyal” to players for as long as they don’t have a better person for that position. as soon as a better option comes by, that “loyalty” shifts automatically-ask Gilberto Silva if you don’t believe me.
    the point is when you say something like “…..All Wenger has to do is Bench Ade-buymore, Bench Ade-judas, Bench Ade-lier, bench him and show him that We Are Arsenal and that we are just fine without him…..” or “……..Who do they think they are dealing with? We are Arsenal and only want loyalty at our club….” you sound so naive and foolish. I totally understand why you are feeling bitter but to call a spade a spade, this is a proffesional game and things like a club being a ‘family’ or ‘loyal’ is an illusion that has been fixed in our brains as fans coz it entertains us and they get money from it – it is just like showbiz. even fabregas who is presenting himself as loyal is doing so because he knows that his time to reap in arsenal is very near and he’s gonna make a maximun out of it. 7 or 8 years down the line he will be spent and arsenal will NOT say “fine fabregas you aren’t as good as you were but since you were loyal to us we gonna keep you around till you are 40!”. they will not do that at all. they’ll just bench him like Gilberto then sell him the following season and where does your fucking ‘loyalty’ go to?

    Get real and enjoy the splendid soccer that arsenal plays. love the players for as long as they are around and hate Man U for godsake. things to do with contracts, leave them to the clubs, players and their greedy lawyers to sort them out. afterall no club wants a player to honor his contract to the end coz it will not gain a cent from it – if players stayed to the very last day of their contracts in a club then they would just walk away without being sold and the club gains nothing from it – just like flamini’s case.
    Leave Ade to try and squeeze some more money from the club if he can or if he’s lucky to get a club that is willing to pay him 100k a week then let him go in peace and fuck this shit about loyalty. enjoy the thrill and rivalry in the game but don’t be carried away!”

  12. Knightman.There is absolutely no problem with anyone to better himself financially its the manner you go about it he was opening his mouth at every chance the microphone was put in his face and asking for 120 grand after one good season is a joke there is absolutely no chance of him getting that amout anywhere but he used that figure to force his way out. All he had to do is be patient wait for the manager to come back from the euros and speak to him privately Wenger made it clear on many occasions he will not keep players if they are not happy think of Reyes. When Madrid came in for Fabregas He asked the permission from the club to see Madrid representatives and he did and turn them down.You see its the manner you go about doing things.Me like all Arsenal fans will give him the benefit of the doubt and say Ok he is a young man who acted foolishly and hopefully he’ll learn from it and handle thinks better next time.If he stays and do better this coming season the fans would love him, the club would reward him financially and if those clubs come back for him again and pay the asking price then he’ll go.the fact is these clubs didn’t want to pay the asking price.
    If Ade thinks of Gilberto then he’ll realise there are better ways. Just don’t go the way that Rat Hleb went.
    GILBERTO will be respected by fans forever because he is a hounorable man.The club rewarded him and let go easily without cash in on him and the transfer fees goes toward his wages.

  13. i think knight man is absolutely right and le gunner has a point…we shouldnt judge these football players off the pitch, but on it because we dont know shit!! i understand the fact that ade or hleb should not have gone about opening their mouths and flip floping but we dont know deep details into these deals and contracts..what if the kind of contract they have is not favourable? i seriously hated the way evrybody blasted Hleb…when he wass with his former club and he move to arsenal and he kisses our badge did they complain? hleb has moved on due to some personal reasons and we should cut the dude some slack because while he played for us, he played his heart and soul out,same goes for flamini and gilberto and henry…lets keep our criticisms on the pitch and remeber that no matter which side is wrong or who is greedy, what counts is how they performed on the pitch and they did that very well…we should be happy we dont have players that play rubbish on the field when their hearts are not with the club or when they are not satisfied…i personally pay tribute to gilberto, flamini, adebayor(if he leaves) diarra(hope its not too late) and hleb. Thank you all for contributing to arsenal’s way of playing attacking and attractive football and staying true to the cause on the field even if you weren’t satisfied off it…and a big thank you to everyone that made last season soo special…Gunners for life!!

  14. Le Gunner & Knightman,

    When does a player sign and respect a contract (his word where I come from) Is he better or worse than where he came from. Don’t give me this shit he will feed a village if he sign for someone better. That’s bullshit! Pele said honour your fucking contract Ronaldo. If you sign than fuck off. It’s not our probem!

  15. Contracts do not mean alot, the only thing it means is the player wages and any transfer clauses but the length of time does not count for anything

  16. Just saw the Barnett match. The first team players looked pretty off, Aaron Ramsey was the best of the first half players, a lot of time on the ball, and some neat balls in to the forwards. Looked very promising. Barnett played very well! 0-1 to Barnett at the end of the half

    Wenger substituted most of the team in the second half…putting on many reserve team members, they played a lot better than the first team members. Some good goals…end result 2-1 Arsenal.

  17. first half was not good for Arsenal, Our best players were Ramsey and Nordveit. 1-0 to Barnet at half time, great free kick though. Every team member was subbed off at half time and players such as Steer, Ogogo, Wilshere, Barazite and Simpson came on. Then Arsenal started to play. Simspon levelled with a great goal and good team work allowed Barazite to get the winner. Wilshere was super and Simpson was good. No match time for Vela however.

  18. I thought the first half the players lacked some undrstanding all senior players looked like they still on holiday which is understandable. Gillet(Clichy’s best mate) scored from a free kick for Barnet as we know Wenger’s weakest point is showing his players how to construct a wall. Aaron Ramsey looked really good sprayed the ball really well he was the best player in the first half. In the second half the subs lookd sharp they were out to impress the boss Mark Randall, Jay Simpson, Jack Wilshere and Nacer Barazite were impressive. But the surprise for me is Francis Coquelin no nonsense tough tackler he harassed the opposition for the ball.Who needs Flamoney.

  19. It was funny, that free kick Barnet scored. Tottenham scored from a free kick against Arsenal that was nearly an exact replica, just last season.

    Vela was on the sideline, in plain clothes. Don’t think he was ever going to play.

  20. If you ever wants to hate an Ex Arsenal player it will have to be Hleb.This rat will not shut his stinking hole, after kissing the Barca badge now he is saying that Fabregas wants to join him at Barcelona, some people have no decency in them and this guy is the lowest of the low.What has he got against Arsenal? they gave him a chance and that how he repays them.If any of you have a shirt with hleb on the back please burn it.

  21. I was going to have Hleb on my shirt but then i decided to have V.Pesie instead, good job!! He will not leave for Juve and How manu times does Cesc have to say he is staying, Hleb is just stirring, Cesc is staying!

  22. Also the slimy little git is saying he hopes to beat us in next years cl final. Stupid prick knows barca got beat well by manure and we were robbed by 2 refs by luckypool.I hope he sits on the bench for the whole season at least flamster has kept silent on his time and thanked arsne for what he has learnt with us and I hope he wins the uefa with milan.
    Also ade still wants 100 g to stay now whats going on in his little head as someone that’s had such a poor upbringing is turning down the 70g we have had on the table for quite some time now saying we payed henry that amount when he left??????????? Henry deserved that amount for playing his heart out for this club winning titles and fa cups and having the best goalscoring record for the club he loved. He has always been in my eyes still loyal saying last year he hopes we win and is always looking out for our results and would like to come back one day and I for 1 will be at the gates to welcome him(in spirit anyway airfares too much $) At least arsne said after the barmett game we have 1 more midfielder coming barry or alonso anyone?

  23. @Jay I’m glad you didn’t waste your money on the rat hleb.
    @Butter- You know what mate wouldn’t love to slap Helb sensless? this guy is an absolute shite.He didn’t even say one positive word about Arsenal.
    Thierry is a LEGEND no one comes near him this Ade guy is a clown (a not funny clown) and I hope he joins a Circus somewhere.

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