it’s still very quiet. Almost Interlull quiet. But obviously there’s no Inter bit to define this particular lull. A Christlull doesn’t quite work either, does it? Lullmas? I dunno, and I don’t think it’s that important.
I saw little of yesterday’s football, only about half an hour of Villa v Sp*rs and it was enough for me to consider never, ever watching football again. Clearly Paul Lambert is trying something with his team of youngsters and players who look like supplementary characters in the Bash Street Kids, but whatever it is it’s not working. Not unless his plan is to lose as many games as humiliatingly as possible. I could go over the fact that we went there and made them look reasonably efficient but that would make my head hurt too much.
Our next opponents, Newcastle United, were involved in a bit of an epic with Man United. The league leaders have conceded about all the goals so far this season but keeping scoring more. It seems as if Ferguson is evolving into Ossie Ardiles. But with more gout. I haven’t had a chance to look at Match of the Day yet but I suspect Robin van Persie should have been sent off. For something. Anything. It’s what he deserves.
Newcastle will now come to us a bit tired and hopefully a bit more dejected and come the final whistle we can only hope that Alan Pardew’s face cannot bend itself into the shape required to express his anguish but becomes stuck like your granny said yours would if the wind changed when you made faces as a kid. Although to be fair he does look a bit like that already. I suspect somebody should give him another 8 year deal, just in case.
There’s sad news for Marouane Chamakh who has not been named in the Morocco squad for the upcoming African Cup of Nations. It’s not much of a surprise really. He’s played a grand total of 0 minutes in the Premier League this season, and that’s hardly the kind of form that would get anyone an international call up. Even the two (very good) goals he scored this season didn’t do anything to change the manager’s mind. In the absence of Olivier Giroud, Chamakh is, essentially, the only other traditional centre-forward at the club. So when Wenger chooses Theo Walcott to play there and doesn’t even include you on the bench then that really should tell you all you need to know about your future.
Not that it wasn’t obvious enough already and I’m quite sure Arsenal would have let him go this summer, but the job of trying to move on a player with the football aptitude of a table lamp who is on big wages because of his Bosman is not an easy one. Not even Dick Law and Order has the skillz to make it happen. And look, it’s a bit of a shame because when he first came to the club he looked the part. He worked hard, he won penalties, scored goals and while his overall technique and ability was clearly limited, he was effective.
Then the Dutch Skunk got fit again, Chamakh rarely played (which is something he can’t really complain about given the form/talent of the man who replaced him), and his reaction to all this to enjoy the delights of the Big Smoke. Literally. Maybe he worked hard in training, I don’t know, but I suspect that if he’d shown real desire and application he’d have featured more. Does he want to play football regularly? That is the big question. If he doesn’t, I suspect we’re stuck with him. If he does, then he might well decide it’s time to move on but even still I think he’ll have be persuaded from a financial point of view.
Another guy possibly on the move is Andrei Arshavin. There’s talk of Reading, which would make sense logistically for a man who turned down the chance to move back to Russia permanently this summer. The club were willing to let him go on a free, he wanted to stay in London for various reasons. Again, he’s somebody in whom the manager has little or no faith, and what a waste of talent he’s been. I know some will say he’s never been played in his favourite position but to that I say boo-fucking-hoo. He came, he saw, he conked out. End of.
And finally for today, for those who regularly use the arses (the comments section which can be accessed by pressing [x arses] button where x = some number), Tom has been rolling out a new system. Due to increased muppetry and cuntitude, plus to make our lives a bit easier, it’s now necessary to register and log-in before you can leave a comment. It takes about 20 seconds in total to register, so it’s not a huge ordeal. There are a few bugs (for example x = 0 at the moment) but Tom is working on them. If you notice any, please leave the bug as a comment or you can get in touch by email to let me know (contact link above).
We’ll happily listen to all other feedback and suggestions too. But remember: listening is very different from doing. Have yourselves a good Thursday (it is Thursday, right?), more here tomorrow.