Have you ever ventured to Liverpool? I shall spare you the effort, and the horror, by describing the City precisely. It is like Tottenham-on-Sea. The hapless citizens of this crime-ridden and godforsaken cesspool, where missionaries are still regularly burnt, cling to the following things: Popular modern beat combo The Beatles, two of whom are now deceased, and their football clubs. One, a decent club who know their place, and the other, who do not. The only reasons ever to visit Liverpool are to retrieve one’s hubcaps, jewellery, computer equipment, car radio, grandmother’s purse, church candlesticks and so on, or to watch one’s team play either the locals, in blue, or the Scandinavians, in red.
Sadly, the reds, or as they would have it, The Reds, following the sad departure of that egomaniacal buffoon Mr. Rodgers, were unable to appease their core fanbase by appointing a manager from Norway or Sweden. They turned instead to Herr Klopp of Baden-Württemburg. There was much hoo-haa about his arrival on these shores. He spoke of his gegenpressing, his heavy metal football, and other such fripperies. He has proved himself this far to be if not quite the full-blown, irritating Pulis, at least a flabergudgion of some note, making a nuisance of himself with whomever he comes across during a match. The fellow needs a haircut, and a lesson in proper manners, and a trip to a decent tailor.
The game was, despite it taking place on Merseyside and indeed the presence of Mr. Milner, a very enjoyable blood-pumping affair. A first half characterised by the skimble skamble oberrations of Liverpool’s comical defenders and the again-waxing star of Mr. Ramsara. Mr. Goring-Hildred, who despite his statistics is not beloved by all of Woolwich’s faithful, confected the most Arsenalistic moment of the first half, indeed of the season, when he was able to keep out of the opposition goal a ball from Harry Bell that Stephen Hawking would have scored. It takes quite some skill to perform this manoeuvre, known as The Arse of God. That snakey Argentinian clag-nut Senor Maradona could not have done better with his own fat arse. Truly, it was a wonderful moment.
He atoned for the sin of his beautiful arse ten minutes after oranges. It was his second of the night, his 18th of the season and his fourth in his past four games against Liverpool, and he finished wonderfully following a real connoisseur’s move of nine or so passes which began with Costerley passing back to Harry the Helmet. At this point I urged Arsenal to adopt a more periergic approach to the match, to grind out a victory, to Van Gaal the shit out of it, but no. Yet again, in that most Arsenal of ways, allowed the shoplifters back into it. Irritating substitute Joe Allen, The Sideways Master, retrieved a point for the hosts very late on.
At the risk of obganiating, Leicester City, with their exceptionally pleasurable victory over Middlesex Hotspur, are becoming something of a genuine threat. We are in the middle of January, and here they are, only slightly behind us.
And so to Stoke on Sunday. A City which makes Liverpool look like Vienna. Like any right-thinking Englishman, I despise Stoke, and their manager’s unbearable effutations. They are dangerous. The loathing is mutual. Of a run of season defining fixtures, this one has all the ominous qualities of a police car pulling up outside the house and the officers making their way to your front door with their helmets removed. One cannot help but be trepidatious about it.
In our ranks for the trip to Mordor we will have an exciting new addition, Mr. Malcolm ‘The Fop’ Elleray, whom Arsenal have signed from Aberdeen. The 23-year-old from Northumberland was born in Berwick-upon-Tweed to Margaret and Bob. He gained some notoriety for being able to grow a moustache at ten years of age. He began his career with Berwick Rangers, something he deserves some sympathy for because they are an English club humiliatingly playing in Scotland. This weekly exposure to the savagery of Scottish football toughened him up nicely and he was signed by Aberdeen in 2012.
From my extensive knowledge of the player (that is, I have seen the same YouTube videos as everyone else and read the same flim-flam in the papers) he seems to be something of a Flame-esque utility player with potential to play in four or five positions and pop up with the odd goal from time to time. To those of you who are calling Mr. Windsor a clusterfist, I say this – Mr. Windsor has quite the eye for a galloping, energetic, dynamic midfielder. We hope that Mr. Elleray can even vaguely approach the heights of Arsenal’s storied Number 4: Padhraig O’Feery, who cost a mere £3.75m back in 1996.