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If Arsenal win the league this year it won’t count

By Tony Attwood

You can almost hear the cogs inside the brains of the football journalists clacking round as they try to formulate the excuses they have for not predicting Arsenal’s success this season – success achieved without the multiple mega purchases that they demanded.

They are preparing the ground a little already with repeated sniggers at “highly paid pundits” who make predictions, noting themselves as classy “journalists” and thus a step apart from the rest.

But they too will have to cover the event that we all hope will happen in 2014 – the winning of the league by Arsenal.    They will have to cover it, but they’ll have their excuses ready.

And more than that they will set up the excuses so that they can then go on radio and TV and say that actually it is not so much this excuse as that excuse the means Arsenal weren’t really champions, and for them to be considered a decent side they will have to win the league in 2014/5 as well.  And the cup.  And the Champions League.

In this way they will seek to make their debate look real – by discussing the finer points – when in fact it will remain utterly fatuous.  You know the way the media works.  Define the issue in your own terms and then debate it – ignoring the fact that the initial premise is totally unfounded.

To help make the lunacy of the debate that might happen clear (and of course I don’t know any more than you do if we will win the league but for the moment I’m just letting my hope run away with me), here are what I think will be the ten biggest reasons given for why Arsenal’s return to trophies this season won’t count…

1.  The departure of Sir F Word left Man U restructuring and they were never going to be able to compete this season.  It wasn’t a normal season from them and Moyes needs time to get his team together.

2. Chelsea’s changes at the top were never going to lead to immediate success and it is obvious that the club is rebuilding for the future.  It wasn’t a normal season from them but next year will be different.

3.  Changes at Man City meant that they had an upside down season and couldn’t be consistent in their form – winning at home by miles, losing and drawing away.  It wasn’t a normal season for them – and sometimes a club can have too much money.  Things will settle down next season.

4.  As a result of changes among the top clubs there were more teams challenging for the desired top four positions and that made it much more likely that top teams would drop points.   Thus with Man U, Man U, Liverpool, Southampton (for a little while), Tottenham and Everton all considered to be top scalps to have, everyone lost points.  It made it easy for Arsenal to sail through.  (Actually that argument makes even less sense than 1, 2 and 3 but it will be used).

5.  Refereeing changed during the season, and Arsenal benefited from a new approach by refs.  By next season other teams will have caught up with these changes.

6.  No one really knew much about Ozil when he came so he took other clubs by surprise.  Bringing in an unknown like this isn’t really sporting behaviour but Arsenal have been found out now – and they won’t be able to bring in another Ozil next season.  Besides having three Germans in the first team squad plus an up and coming young German really isn’t on.  It just isn’t cricket, and if everyone did this we might as well pack up and watch German football instead.  It just isn’t British.

7.  Clubs were adjusting to the forthcoming FFP regulations.  Arsenal’s benefit (by not having to adjust) was just a one season hiccup – everyone else has their house in order now.  (It wasn’t and it won’t be, but who cares, this is journalism)

8.  The development of Ramsey was a fluke – and he won’t be able to keep it up again.  It took other teams a while to adjust.

9.  Arsenal were very lucky with injuries.  It won’t happen again.  (Theo? Ox? Podolksi?)

10.  Arsenal’s approach by using players who were “clones” of each other (to cite the Man U ex-manager’s comments in his book), was really not sporting, and not the sort of thing that endears a club to its fans.  Arsenal will be forced to give up on this tactic shortly, or else they will find their stadium empty.   (In short they sacrificed football in order to be able to win something).

Now if any of those sound bizarre to you, remember such things are said – and once all the press are reciting these over and over again, they will become normal chit chat on TV and radio, and in the press.  They will be the agenda.

What you won’t hear are suggestions that the invention of a rotating five man midfield revolutionised football, made the club very hard to beat, and is something that other teams will be copying in the coming years.  You won’t hear it because at the moment talk of the rotational midfield is deemed too complicated for your average football supporter to understand.

That’s why pundits need excuses – because they treat all of us as if we are thick.

 

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27 comments to If Arsenal win the league this year it won’t count

  • avatar Far East Gooner

    Forget what these idiotic pundits would say, let’s hope our team stay on feet and lets the footwork does the talking in May 2014

  • avatar Super Singh

    Pundits and journalists have all ways been begrudging in their praise to Arsene Wenger, ever since he joined? How dare this French man tell the media he’ll sue us if we print crap about him? Seems to have got up their nose?
    Any way we shouldn’t listen to these dimwits.

  • avatar blacksheep63

    its not because we are all thick Tony, its because most ‘pundits’ and journalists are

  • avatar moses

    this is total bullshit.

  • avatar gary

    Forget pundits, you Will have even négative Arsenal fans saying it

  • avatar TommieGun

    Breaking news: Van Purse “might have” handed in a transfer request. I guess the little boy inside him got bored.

    :-D

    I’d say we take him back for 40,000 a week + a public apology.

  • avatar ARSENAL 13

    As per rotating midfield, Falmini can end up as striker and Theo as the holding midfielder…..Whats going on. Its not fair.

    Remember our front 3 in Cesc years. They interchanged places. Was difficult for defenders to track them. But they never interchanged with deep lying 3 midfielders.

    Did Mr Wenger let those players leave with less effort to retain their services as they were not effectively implementing his ideas on field???….

  • avatar ARSENAL 13

    @TommieGun,

    And put him in the under-21 league team…

  • avatar Georgaki-Pyrovolitis

    Tony

    They’ve started already today on the Sunday Supplement. The other teams are faltering. Arsenal still need players to compete.

  • avatar Shevo

    Tony
    We could win the title for the next 10 years and the media and BBC twats will still find excuses to not give us any credit. I just laugh at the Bellends, sit back and enjoy watching the greatest team and manager on earth…

  • avatar Double canister

    Tony
    we’ve heard all these already rom the AAA.

  • avatar Hisham Hashim

    Tony,
    I think we should allow these pundits/journalists their space as their views could be one of the reasons that drive our players to prove them wrong. So let them be, you can cut them to size at season’s end.

  • avatar Va Cong

    Great post tony. Like I said even if we win it’s because the other teams faltered so apparently we are handed the title true champions have to hold on is the next line…
    The pundits make me sick!

  • avatar nicky

    If we win the title this season, I would hope to retain it next season….something we have failed to do for over 70 years.

  • avatar judge

    Great post and responses :)
    Lets be humble though until we deliver the goods end of season otherwise we as supporters will look no better than the scum down the road in everyone elses eyes

  • avatar Va Cong

    I’ve been gloating to a manure fan as he’s given me crap for a while. I say oh look no fergie time. Refs seem to not have so many dodgy decisions. Then I ask what is Rooney still doing on the pitch? Oh love it! 2 – 0 to the arsenal today oh yeah baby!

  • avatar Nelson Wong

    I am quite bored after dinner so may be I waste sometime and try to clear this with one sentence for each of these

    1. Considering the EPL record, it is not normal for Sir F Word word to stay all these years

    2. They are never normal because HE( you know who) fires his manager every two months regardless of performance.

    3. It isn’t normal to have them in top 5, rank higher than Man U, and have a mega rich owner.

    4. Yes, tell players, managers, owners and fans of other teams they five years ago they just go there to have fun and did not want to win a match against a “top team”.

    5. Change to being a little bit more reasonable and fair?

    6. Which team bought the most new players that no one knows how they play?

    7. So you mean you want to punish the team play by the rule?

    8. May be you try to be that fluke or try to spot one the coming year?

    9. Arsenal were unlucky with injuries during the last 8 years.

    10. I would be pleased to call Mr. Hodgson to tell him we have clone him a legion of Wilsheres.
    or
    To Man U ex-manager: why do you pay 24M to buy a stupid, defective clone?

  • avatar GoingGoingGooner

    Throughout all of this, though we strive to show that we deserve recognition, I think it is important to be humble, too. We have, after all, not won the league, yet. And, if we do win the league, we must show some magnanimity to the other teams, something that has not been shown to us in the last, most recent string of frustrating years.

  • avatar indian-gooner

    Dhirubhai Ambani, a great indian businessman once said, ‘if people are talking bad about you for no reason, understand that you’ve achieved success.’ now i don’t know what the pundits or the people of Europe have to say, but here in India, we love arsenal, we love their style of play, and hence tend to follow it. We don’t care what the highly paid journalists say, arsenal is doing its work properly not only by winning, but by inspiring others to play.

  • avatar para

    If not for Arsenal, the PL would have become even more boring, so many teams are starting to play like Arsenal, copy their style and tactics, and we can see this in the much improvement of the so called lower teams, who are now challenging everybody, making the PL so much more entertaining.
    ManU are being found out, the same team that won PL, are now struggling, and may it continue. Why? Well we all know why, so i won’t mention it again.
    Arsenal are moving forward, and on top of that the PL is much more competitive, so when we win PL, is an even greater achievement.
    Forward gunners. Treble anyone?

  • “8. The development of Ramsey was a fluke – and he won’t be able to keep it up again.”

    Sorry Tony but Ian Wright’s already saying this. He said it while ‘punditing’ for ITV in our game v Marseille.

    And he is an Arsenal “legend”, not just some Arsenal hating Man Yoo or Liverpool ex-player.

  • avatar Ray from Norfolk, Virginia

    Another excuse:
    -Referees were supposed to officiate like Anthony Taylor did in the first game of the season, but Arsenal intimidated referees, and they could not continue being truly impartial.

    More seriously, shouldn’t we request pundits like Alan Hansen, Alan Shearer, Michael Owen, Stewart Robson, and Ian Wright to eat their hats in public at the end of the season should we win the title? If they do not own a hat, I have a collection of Shriner Fez “chocolate” hats.

  • avatar Sammy The Snake

    Idiots will always be idiots. Forget them and let’s get on with the Everton game.
    3 more points, please. Don’t mind comments that will follow the game saying “Everton aren’t as good… Arsenal must prove themselves against ManC & Chelsea”.

  • avatar Arsenal Forever

    Arsenal is the only team that has tests i wonder if our opponets are doing homework Tony bcz they havent had any tests according to pundits.

  • avatar Brickfields Gunners

    If we win I promise to give thanks to all the other clubs who valiantly sacrificed themselves so that we could get our hands on some silverware after 8 fucking years !
    And then maybe an extra glass of wine !
    And a few “Woo Hoo Hoos” to my long torturing friends who support ManUre ,Liverpuddle , Chelski & the Spuds !

  • avatar colario

    Bootoomee

    I must agree with you and correct you with regard to Ian.
    Correct an Arsenal legend on the pitch.

    Now as a ‘pundit – expert’ not a legend but a leg end and one of many.
    He will go away when they stop paying him and his words will be long forgotten.