it struck me this morning that out of the 7 league games we’ve won in a row, 5 have come against teams whose manager is really, really annoying.
I don’t have a league table or anything like that. I find that over-complicates things. But if I did it’d be hard to decided who got closest to the top of the pile. Starting with a win over Sunderland (Martin O’Neill), then Harry Redknapp, followed by Kenny Dalglish, Alan ‘creepy Uncle’ Pardew and Alex McLeish (ignoring David Moyes a bit because although he is annoying he’s not up there with these guys, for me at least).
Then on Saturday it’s another one, Ailsa from Home and Away is manager of QPR and he could shoot right to the top of the charts. Hughes is one of the most irritating men in football. Remember, he left Fulham because they weren’t big enough, then he rocks up at QPR when he discovered there was nothing else out there for him.
And he and Arsene don’t get on. I know this is true of quite a few managers and those playing Devil’s Advocate may suggest that the common denominator is a certain Frenchman, but I choose to believe it’s because they’re pig-ignorant, hypocritical dickheads who enjoy the comedy stylings of Adam Sandler.
When he was at Man City, Hughes spent an entire game shouting abuse at Arsene, goading him from the technical area, calling him names, which is all fine really. This is football. We do it from the stands, when we play I’m sure we’re not all sweetness and light, but for Hughes to then go crying to the press about how mean old Frenchie wouldn’t shake his hand shows just what a spectacular twatspanner he is.
If you want to abuse someone all game long, fine, but don’t make out like you’re some kind of wet behind the ears ingénue when the person you’re abusing chooses to treat you like a person who has been abusing them for 90 minutes. It’s for this reason that I sincerely hope Mark Hughes has a serious falling out with Joey Barton who finally flips and comes to work one morning with a freshly sharpened cleaver. Or gets them relegated and then gets fired. Out of a cannon. Or just just loses his job.
Anyway, it all adds a bit of spice to proceedings. Those on the far side of the stadium last Saturday reported that the withered, sunburnt testicle was going mental in his technical area which amused me to no end, because it was quite clear that him going mental had no effect whatsoever on his players. The last time I saw a team that apathetic was the season when ‘Boro were relegated, they came to us needing points to aid their attempt to stay up, but played like a team that just wanted to get it over with. It being the removal of the manager they no longer had any time for (I think it was Southgate at the time).
Ultimately though, it is just the Circle of Life. One complete cunt will go to be replaced by another complete cunt sooner or later and thus the football world keeps on turning. And let’s not forget we’ve got Tony Pubis still to come this season, the cap wearing prince of the goblins, that’s always fun.
Back to us now and Mikel Arteta has spoken glowingly about the spirit in the Arsenal camp. He says he’s been surprised at how good it was, even during the darkest of days, and maybe that’s been a factor in how we’ve turned things around twice this season. Ok, ideally you wouldn’t want to have to turn things around twice but there’s much to be said for the fact that we did. And he urged his teammates not to think the recent run of form means the job is done, saying:
If anyone thinks it’s all done now, then they are making a big mistake. We can’t take our foot off the pedal now.
We have won seven in a row now, which is very difficult in the Premier League nowadays, and we have done it well, playing some high-tempo football, but there are some tough, tough games coming up in our last eight matches.
I know I’ve said this before but the cup exits mean that we’re going to be fresher than we might normally be going into the final league games of the season. I’d much rather still be in those competitions, but under these circumstances it does give us time to recover between games and work our way back to a position from which we can build properly in the summer.
This month’s edition of the Arsenal Magazine carries an interview with Carl Jenkinson, whose family are all Gooners and who is now, quite literally, living the dream. This snippet of the interview with him and his dad is great:
Steve: I’m a silly old man maybe, but I always had a dream that one day my son would sign for Arsenal, and we would come out of the manager’s office and hug and do a little dance outside the office. And that’s exactly what we did.
Carl: Well we had a hug – I think you were the only one who danced!
I suspect Jenkinson danced too. I could see him doing a reverse Charleston or perhaps a gentle Polonaise, and why wouldn’t he? Signing for the club you support must be about the greatest thing ever, and while he’s been unlucky not to have developed more this season due to injury (especially missing the chance to play when Sagna was out), his improvement looked quick enough to suggest he could well become a very handy member of the squad.
Right, that’s yer lot this morning. More tomorrow.