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Some Champions League and Thierry talk

Good morning, I am sitting here surrounded by a plethora of Macs. Well, I’ve just got a new iMac and I spent most of yesterday transferring stuff from one ‘puter to the other. There really should be a ‘Do this in an instant’ button.

When I first started it told me it would take 97 hours and 12 minutes. Then it came right down but it was like one of those bus stop things. It tells you the bus is going to be there in 5 minutes but stays on 5 minutes for 5 minutes. Then goes up to 7 minutes. I think we’ve got there in the end though.

I did sit back and relax a bit to watch Real Madrid and Manchester United in the Champions League. Football is quite different when you don’t really care who wins as long as the Dutch Skunk doesn’t and I took some joy out of his failure to score last night, especially when he could have won the game but miskicked like a baby gazelle. Perhaps his purple patch is now over and people will see him for the greying Michael Ricketts he really is.

And you can say all you want about him leaving and how much you understand it, but I understand why a lot of bad people do bad stuff, it doesn’t mean they’re not bad people who shouldn’t be dipped in honey then left naked in the sun on the top of a fire ant colony. As for Madrid, well, without Ronaldo they’re not very good at all, are they?

It was a brilliant equalising header from the man with the most disgusting neck in the world after Danny Welbeck made Sergio Ramos look like Igors Stepanovs, but they’re at home, chasing a game, and all they can do is bring on Luca Modric. That lot from down the lane might not have won the league since 1961 but getting that much money for Modric is one of the greatest achievements in modern football. He’s a player we were very interested in, and came very close to signing the summer before he joined Sp*rs, but he’s a Hlebbish bullet dodged if you ask me.

And we might bemoan our lack of back-up for Wojciech Szczesny but seeing Real play the janitor in nets shows you even the richest clubs don’t necessarily have the strength in depth you’d imagine. Still, all to play for in the next game. Let’s hope for more meteorites.

It’s still very quiet from an Arsenal point of view with not much happening in the way of pre-Blackburn talk just yet. We have to concentrate on FA Cup before we can think about the somewhat daunting prospect of hosting Bayern Munich next week, no doubt we’ll start getting dribs and drabs of team news over the next couple of days.

In the meantime, Thierry Henry has admitted he’d like to come back to the club in some capacity when his playing days are over and has given his backing to Arsene Wenger. On the boss and the pressure he’s under, he says:

When you don’t win, people constantly question your work and your legitimacy. Everything you have achieved previously is forgotten. For me, these are things that are hard to hear, difficult to live. It’s sad, but it’s football.

The last three words of that are the most important, really. Sad it is, but it is also the way of the game. When you don’t meet expectations or the levels you’ve previously set then you are open to question and criticism. Nobody is immune to that. But it’s what he says about coming back that’s most interesting:

All I know is I’d like to stay involved with football, and, I hope, at Arsenal. It’s the heart that speaks, it’s the team I support. If I can come back to the club, I’d love to do it, but it’s not my decision. It would be a wish, a desire more than something that can be made official, I have two more years to play here, then I’ll see.

But I’d really love to be back with Arsenal.

Obviously it’s something for the future, as he says himself he has two years on his NYRB contract and he’s spoken recently about wanting to win that before he retires, but it’ll be interesting to see how serious he is. If you look at Patrick Vieira, somebody people continually talk about as a missing piece of our coaching puzzle, he’s spent the last couple of years in a chiefly ceremonial role at Man City. He’s a well-paid ambassador/mascot.

Compare Vieira to Bergkamp, who is assistant manager of Ajax, and there’s a real difference. Sadly, the issues Dennis has with flying probably preclude him from ever becoming a manager, but an Henry – Bergkamp double-act sounds like a kind of dream team. The chances of it are very slim, obviously, but who here hasn’t thought about what they’d spend the money on if they won the lottery? Same thing, really.

Just for reference, I’d spend the money on an island in a warm place, all the rum, and a flock of killer ocelots to defend me, even if I might get a bit torn up in the process. The simple things, you know yourself.

Righto, that’s enough guff for today, back tomorrow with an Arsecast and all that. Until then.

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Fan of Arsenal, Robert Pires and most everything to do with rum and whiskey. Writer, podcaster, ace flintknapper, sluggish centre-half. Smiter of those that ought to be smote.