This morning’s post feels like it ought to come with sound effects. The sort used in seventies ‘comedy’ shows where there was an element of suspense; der-der-der! That sort of thing; you’ll understand why later on, after the limbering up has finished.
Maybe you won’t understand or care even less by the time we get there. But all of that is for later. The internationals continued last night with Wales grabbing a creditable draw in Belgrade. Aaron Ramsey scored the Welsh, with a well-taken penalty. Very calm; let him take them for Arsenal.
It was immediately labelled a ‘Panenka’. This is modern football and we everything must be labelled, more so than in the past. Did we do the same ‘back in the day’? We were quick to hand out nicknames but pigeon-holing everything is a modern phenomenon.
I mean, we didn’t call free-kicks curled into the top corner, ‘Talbot’s’ or ‘Noddy’s’, did we? For the uninitiated, Brian ‘Noddy’ Talbot curled a free kick into the top corner of the Newcastle net in a 2 – 0 win on a Tuesday night. The following Saturday, again in front of the Clock End, he did this in the 3 – 1 win over Liverpool. A home crowd demanding Noddy shoot wasn’t enough warning for Grobbelaar.
Don’t let anyone tell you there’s no such thing as deja vu.
Immediately Ramsey’s goal appeared on social media, there was a deafening sound of anorak zips being pulled up to the neck and bobble hats being straightened. “Oh no, that wasn’t Panenka”, they cried, for the anoraks were up in arms, determined to restore purity to their label.
These are the same people who argue that Zidane’s wasn’t a ‘Panenka’ because it clipped the bar on the way into the net. It must be called a “Zizou”.
Get. A. Life.
A Ramsey goal is no longer the prelude to a celebrity death so quite a few are resting easy this morning. It is the prelude to a debate about whether he’s good, rubbish or not fit to wear an Arsenal shirt. Minds on the Welshman, are firmly made up with no room for manoeuvre.
You’re wrong, by the way, if you don’t think he’s a good player. We’ve just been using the wrong formation to get the best out of him, as Euro 2016 and the end of last season showed.
And it doesn’t take much for Arsenal supporters to be up in arms these days. Take Serge Gnabry…
[Cue comedy der-der-der]
…and Bayern did. The winger signed for them, having used Werder Bremen as a showcase for his talents. Nobody was surprised; it’s a move which has been mooted for some time, certainly since he left north London.
Some are bitter about it although I’m not sure why. He wasn’t a regular, he’s one of those on the list of ‘what might have been’. Very talented for sure but then so was Theo Walcott at that age and that one’s going well, isn’t it?
Many argue they’d rather have Gnabry than Ox which is fine, although based on a flawed comparison. For Gnabry’s career at Arsenal, read Ox’s; he would most likely have suffered the same fate – in and out of the side, with supporters on his back, ruing the way we let Ox leave on the cheap..
The reaction staggered me. He hasn’t even left Arsenal for Bayern – although not through lack of effort, it must be said – but now he’s signed for them. So what? Good luck to him; I hope he has a good career there and doesn’t end up like Fran Merida.
Laurent Koscielny didn’t improve the mood. Asked about signing for the club he supported as a boy, he refused to rule out a move to Marseille. DER-DER-DER! It was a betrayal; we’re losing Kos as well as Alexis, Mesut and OX – Liverpool are back in for him, apparently.
“But will I sign for them?”, he said. “I have no idea at all” came the answer to his rhetorical question. Not “I’d love to”, just a simple recognition that none of us knows what the future will hold, not even Mystic Meg.
Move along, nothing to see here.
And that’s more or less the same with Wojciech Szcznesy, although the Pole’s situation is a little different. Were there any other manager at the club now, I suspect the end of Wojo’s loan spell at Roma would herald a return to Arsenal as understudy to Cech.
But I don’t think Wenger trusts the Pole and Arsène doesn’t have a good track record of allowing goalkeepers redemption. Look at Fabianski’s Arsenal career for that one.
Arsenal, it seems, have agreed to sell Szczesny to Juventus and we know this to be true because Gianluigi Buffon told us as much. Who are we to argue with a man on the inside?
Will Arsène take this opportunity to promote Emi Martinez? With Ospina leaving as well, it seems likely. The Argentinean is “the future of the club”, according to Wenger, so unless that was flattery completely misinterpreted by the young goalkeeper.
He’ll probably be a cup goalkeeper next season although as with being club captain, that role is something of a poisoned chalice.
A late addition: quite possibly the best thing on the web at the moment –
Could watch this all day… pic.twitter.com/mzGUKIgD4f
— Cataphonics (@Cataphonics) June 11, 2017