‘Blah blah blah rabble rabble rabble something really racist.’
‘Blah blah blah rabble rabble rabble something quite sexist indeed.’
‘Blah blah blah rabble rabble rabble some bizarre homophobic reference.’
Hey, don’t worry folks. Don’t get offended, it was just friendly text message banter, it’s all right!
I think if I was in charge of the world I’d take the word ‘banter’ and push it off a cliff. It’s tainted beyond all repair now. I was watching a TV show last night and one of the character used the word banter in the manner in which it should be used and even then it made me cringe.
So well done Richard Keys and the LMA (whose statement about Malky Mackay is, possibly, one of the worst things ever written), rather than add to the lexicon, you’re destroying language. Banter, as a word, is now like a house where an entire family was murdered as they slept and the killer drew pictures in blood on the wall then killed himself and haunted the place in the shape of a gigantic clown with wings (the most terrifying thing I can think of).
Once again football shows its disdain to address issues that really matter. Watch Mackay go silent for a while, try to mend fences with a pathetic mea culpa to one of the tabloids, and then get a job somewhere. That’s how it works, right?
Anyway, onto more palatable things and that’s Arsenal’s trip to Goodison Park tomorrow. At his press conference yesterday the manager said that the only doubt was Mikel Arteta (I’m assuming he means on top of Kieran Gibbs’ absence from the Palace game).
Somewhat ominously, he said he’d have the results of Arteta’s scan by 10am yesterday but as of now we haven’t heard anything. Is it a case that no news is good news? I hope so. I touch on the Spaniard and the reaction to his injury in today’s Arsecast, so I won’t repeat myself here, but ultimately it comes to this: You can’t complain on the one hand that we always have players injured then try and justify celebrating the fact one of our players is injured by dressing it up as being a ‘blessing in disguise’.
As for what he might do if the injury is serious, the manager said:
If it’s a long-term injury that puts us in a position where we have to be creative.
Some have taken that to mean that we re-train David Ospina as a midfielder or something as hilarious as that. The feeling I got yesterday from watching the press conference is that we’re still very much in the market for new players and that the final week or so of the transfer window will be quite busy – again though, it seems like Wednesday’s Champions League game is hugely important when it comes to this.
Wenger was asked about transfers, he gave the usual kind of answers about how he’s open to strengthening etc etc, but when asked specifically about signing a defensive midfielder he uhmed and aahed before saying with a smile, “I’m not against that, no.”
So I think there’s stuff being worked on and it wouldn’t surprise me to see us do a bit of business before 11pm on Monday September 1st, when the transfer window closes. That will include players going out as well as those coming in although on any potential departures, Arsene said:
We have had no offers for anyone to leave.
Offers, eh? There’s the key word. Offers does not mean lack of interest, just that nothing’s formal yet. However, we’ll see how it plays out.
Finally, before we get to this week’s Arsecast, Arsene Wenger has urged Jack Wilshere to ignore the critics who have the knives out already for him this season, saying:
I believe at the moment he should not respond to it, just focus on his game. If Wilshere can maintain physically to be fit then he will make a huge career.
Yes, he has not developed as far as everyone expected him to from when he was 18, but that’s because he was injured, not because he doesn’t train seriously.
And you know what, if I had to listen to anybody’s opinion about Jack Wilshere it’d be the man who works with him daily, sees him on the training ground and knows him inside out, and not a pair of witless cretins who are tasked by Sky to analyse football yet one of them, for all his wealth, still can’t a find a suit that fits him well enough so that his groin isn’t poking towards the camera at every moment, while neither of them can speak their own language in the correct tense.
Nobody’s denying this isn’t a big season for Jack, or that he’s got to start fulfilling the potential he’s got, but fatuous psycho-analysis from a pair of morons isn’t something anyone, least of all Jack Wilshere, should pay any mind to.
Right then, time for this week’s Arsecast and I’m joined by author Alex Fynn to discuss Arsene Wenger, the summer, the way the club is operating in the transfer market and the new book he co-authored with Kevin Whitcher – Arsene and Arsenal: the quest to rediscover past glories.
As well as that I look back on the week that was, announce the winner of the book competition from last week (hardbacks still available here), get some ice-bucket challenges from a couple of old friends and there’s the usual waffle.
You can subscribe to the Arsecast on iTunes by clicking here. Or if you want to subscribe directly to the feed URL you can do so too (this is a much better way to do it as you don’t experience the delays from iTunes). To download this week’s Arsecast directly click here – 29mb MP3.
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That’s that for this morning, news throughout the day on Arseblog News, more here tomorrow with a full preview of the Everton game.