I want ALL the Colombians…

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Well, well, well! What a night of football!

Before we crack into that, just wanted to revisit the Gay Gooners thing one more time. I found the response to my post quite incredible with regards to the diversity of comments it attracted. It obviously brought in the totally ignorant, which I expected. Asking people to keep quiet about their peaceful minority group in case it creates division amongst bigoted narrow minded fans is beyond ridiculous. You can’t deal with it… have a word with yourselves, because clouding homophobia under ‘I just don’t want to see it’ is not acceptable.

What really got me were the comments that came from quite normal people who couldn’t handle the banner, or it seemed, gay people in general. Amazing that we’re in 2014 and attitudes like that still exist. The shame is, we have a generation of parents raising kids to have negative views of gay people… so we’re still a long way off equality and civility.

… there you go. What a shame.

Onto the football. Brazil vs Chile wasn’t the beast of a game I was hoping for. I think Chile did a fantastic job to pull one back against Brazil (SAAAAANNNNNCCCCHHHHHEEEEEZZZZZZ IS A GOONER). However, when the game went to penalties, you kind of felt the home crowd would see the game home. I thought Alexis Sanchez looked hot, I’d do anything to have that man at Arsenal. I’d maybe not allow him to take penalties… his was quite weak. Keepers seem to have got the knack of penalties down the middle this tournament. I was quite surprised by how average the kicks were….

The Uruguay vs Colombia game (it’s spelt with two O’s not a U according to an e-mail I had last night) was spectacular. What a superb game packed full of the sort of joy you associate with a brilliant World Cup. It was apparent Uruguay didn’t go into that game with any hope of stealing a win. They played negative football, very tactical which was very boring to watch. But Colombia had everything about their side. Passion, pace, power, vision, fight and belief.

They had so many good players on show… Juan Cuadrado was superb, he played out wide and caused all sorts of problem. He’s fast, very mobile and sublimely skilful at times (impressive for a tall man). I thought the full backs were excellent, Jackson Martinez is an absolute speed demon and obviously, there’s James Rodriguez, what an unbelievable talent. His goal was spectacular. You just don’t see goals like that. He controlled a pass with his chest, turned it on goal and powered an incredible volley in off the bar from 30 yards. An absolute screamer! Also mildly amusing that he calls himself ‘jaahmess’, that’s what me and my sister used to call my brother when we were kids to irritate him. Still do, so what?

They went on to take the game, totally deserved. They’re now more than the dark horses, they’re one of the favourites to take this tournament.

What I think is special about teams like France, Colombia and Holland is they’re not packed full of World Class superstars… they’re just brilliant ‘teams’. I had this debate with my pals in the pub, they were saying that (Northern Irish guys picking on England) England are incapable of having a team because selfishness is a cultural issue.

I DISAGREE.

I think you can make a team with any country. People make a team, not the culture of the nation. If the people are stereotypical of a league, then you change the people. Chile had a player in their side who wasn’t in contract. This is why it all comes down to the manager in international football. You’ve got Roy Hodgson managing Stevie G… a player who helped ship him out of Liverpool. Bad start, right?

I simply don’t believe that Premier League footballers are naturally more selfish than players from other leagues. Even if they are, there must be a way of getting more out of them. Real Madrid are a club built around galactico superstar status and they won the Champions League. Ego is football, you’ll never escape that. Great managers work with it… or around it. We need a manager who can manage those aspects of the game.

We need a team. Look at the joy the C0lombians, look at how they celebrate together. Look at the Dutch, a nation notorious for being nutters in sport, look at how united they are. Even the French are together this World Cup.

Anything is possible with the right man in charge at the top. International management is about pulling together a vision, building a team culture and being bold with your tactics and selections (in 3 weeks). Roy Hodgson was never the dynamic leader we needed and he should have his contract terminated after delivering an atrocious World Cup.

Strong rumours are that we’re Schneiderlin and Sanchez are now picking up pace with the apparently reliable Francois Pinet stating that he believes both deals will be done shortly. I’ve not had any update, but we’ve been talking to his agent for over 3 weeks now. Throw in Debuchy and Mario Balottelli and you’re laughing. Not quite sure that’s realistic. I’d also be surprised if Southampton allowed their how side to be decimated in one summer. Quite unbelievable how poor it’s been for them so far. They have a good set up though, so they should be fine. Ronald Koeman is a good manager as well, so I’d expect him to bring a very heavy Dutch influence with him and probably sneak some players over from Portugal.

I mean, Portugal, where do they pick their players up from? So many incredible talents end up there. Such a shame we weren’t in for James Rodriguez! I mean, the lad is 22… could he be the first £100m player to exchange? If Suarez is 27 and worth £70m and Gareth Bale can go for £85m… surely this lad could go for me? Such a spectacular talent.

This evening, the Dutch take on Mexico. Hopefully that’ll be a incredible match. They’ll be relatively fresh after securing early qualification. Then the later game is Costa Rica versus Greece. Bit more Euro interest there!

So we’re on for another great day of fun!

Right, that’s all I’ve got for you, have a great day!

P.S. If you’re at Glastonbury today, make sure you get over to The Other Stage to see The Subways player at 1210. Brilliant band, one of my favourites growing up and they’re Gooners!

942 Responses to “I want ALL the Colombians…”

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  1. MidwestGun

    Thomas –
    You could be correct. He might be a mid table starter. But he might be an amazing squad player for depth at Arsenal. Hard to say. He’s got more skills than most on our bench . If AW uses him as an excuse not to buy I’ll be just as angry as the next person. But I’m willing to give him a chance. The fact is we are never gonna have a team of 22 world class players. There will always be young talent. At least that’s how I feel today. Lol. Talk to me again in September after I see our incoming transfers.

  2. Bamford13

    So the two games tomorrow … I think both France and Germany win fairly easily, though France could struggle a little with Nigeria’s athleticism. I still think they win fairly easily.

    France 2 – 0 Nigeria
    Germany 2 – 0 Algeria

  3. MidwestGun

    I like France 3 to 1. Think they might give up a goal.
    Germany 2 to 1. They looked vulnerable at times too.
    But I dont think either underdog has enough firepower.

    Plus, I have money on Germany to Finals and Muller for the Golden boot.

  4. Dissenter

    Why does ESPN think a commentator has to have an English accent to be knowledgable.
    Theses mugs are just dismissive of Mexico.
    Does anyone think the “Dutch found them out”, it’s more of the Dutch got a lucky break.

  5. Dissenter

    Nigeria don stand a chance with Joseph Yobo at the back.

    No chance whatsoever.

    It’ll still be a close game. France didn’t beat Ecuador, did they?

  6. California Poogs

    Les Bleus need to put the Super Eagles to the sword. I expect they will do as well.
    Die Mannschaft are given a real test with an in-form Algeria side who believe revenge will be a dish best served 32 years cold. expect it to heat up fast in Porto Alegre, where the humidity will not favor either team. I think Podolski is a big loss for them here, he’s worth a goal tomorrow.
    Very difficult to predict, especially for la France, where my heart says we win it all.
    France 1-0 Nigeria
    Germany 1-1 Algeria (3-5) pens

  7. Bamford13

    California

    I don’t mean to call your opinions into question — you seem to know Algeria’s football history well for an American (or you’re just repeating what you’ve read somewhere) — but earlier I believe you compared Joel Campbell to .Cesc Fagregas, saying you hadn’t seen anyone “open spaces up” as well as Campbell since Fabregas.

    A good many absurd things are said on Le Grove — Marble, for example, telling us that Zidane was “all hype” — but unless you can better explain what you meant by comparing an average center forward with a bit of athleticism to (at his best) a world class CAM, I’m afraid your observation is up there with the most absurd of them.

    And while predictions are tricky affairs, and Algeria may in fact cause Germany some difficulties, I find the notion that Germany will need penalties to beat Algeria to be almost as ridiculous as Joel Campbell having anything in common with Cesc Fabregas.

    I will be beside myself with shock if Germany don’t dispatch with Algeria in regular time.

  8. BellerinisGood

    So United passed up the chance to take James Rodriguez for about 5 million in 2010 and instead paid more for Bebe.

    Wow-imagine a Man U team with both Pogba and Rodriguez, both of whom it seems would have been easier to get or keep than lose to other clubs.

    Sometimes, when we get frustrated with our club, it’s fun to look at the numerous errors other clubs make too.

  9. Dissenter

    Bamford,
    I find you reaction to California condescending to say the least.

    Ghana and the US pushed the Germans all the way.

    California is not out of his depth to predict that Algeria might push the Germans to extra time or even penalties. Spain won the last World Cup with several close games.

    I don’t think an incident that happened 32 years ago has any bearing on this game. Most of the current World Cup players weren’t even born then, talk less of seeking revenge.

    I know you’ve always posted 100% accurate comments on Legrove but really get off your high horse.

  10. California Poogs

    Mid,
    I fancy those 11-1 odds, as 11 is my lucky number…
    Bamford,
    I am just dramatizing tomorrows games, I’ve had a few drinks. No, the games probably don’t need additional hype, and yes, Germany is odds on to win. And yes I’m just repeating the ESPN commentators who mentioned the alleged collusion of West Germany and Austria to knock out Algeria (after Algeria beats West Germany 2-1) in Spain ’82. You caught me.
    Joel Campbell though. I remember hearing Wenger talk about penalty taking, and Franck Ribery in particular and he states that Franck himself does not know where he is going to shoot. Wenger values this quality very highly. Unpredictability. Gervinho had it, Nasri. Hleb, Arshavin, but the best was Cesc. You would see a ball roll up to Cesc’s feet, Cesc facing his own goal, and you expect a simple pass to the left back or back to a central defender but Fabregas, on the halfway line, turns his man and finds Adebayor at the edge of the 18. Fabregas became so good at these unpredictable passes that you could predict them. Stopping the, was another matter but the point is, Campbell has that quality of unpredictability. Campbell is not hitting 50 pinpoint passes (that I’ve seen, ill bet he can), but he is so unpredictable. Today he showed that not only is he unpredictable but has the vision to really exploit that attribute. The two backheel passes in the first half were the most obvious examples, where the Greek defense expects him to control and back pass but he lets it run, or backheels it into a teammate. Not only did it catch the Greeks by surprise but it caught me too. That’s why it was so special.
    Not since Cesc (take Pirlo out of the equation he’s fantastic at this as well) have I seen a player with both the unpredictability to beat his man, or the entire Greek midfield with the ease that I saw Campbell doing it. Gervinho was unpredictable, but he doesn’t have the vision of Campbell.
    Campbell made it look so easy. He has the talent.

  11. California Poogs

    The thing about the Germany-Algeria game is that whoever wins it’s still going to be a massive grudge match vs Les Bleus in the quarters. Damn the knockout stages are so entertaining.

  12. Dark Hei

    Want to see Campbell given a chance at Arsenal. His ability to press is good and is something we need for our guys up front.

    Walcott, Podolski, Carzola and OX all can’t press very well. Only Giroud does that but he isn’t all that fast.

    If we can get Sanchez in as well, we will be able to forge a very good pressing game and play a higher backline.

  13. Dorobucci

    Football pricing have been utterly a disaster. I think I see what wenger is trying to do, but he cant do it alone. sincerely speaking football transfers need a price cap.
    Most of us now see a million pounds as derisory,imagine yourself having a million pounds? . you buy a player so expensive and yet you cant guarantee the players success, take el nino for example @£50m, even giroud is doing better, that sum can finance some countries budget per annum. where is the love people, where we support a wasteful game and soo many people are dying of hunger in africa. If we want to change the world, I think football deserves a change too.

  14. Leedsgunner

    Fergie’s £100m mistake (or if you like his parting gift to Man United)

    Losing Pogba on a free
    Signing Bebe instead of James Rodriguez….

    OOOOOPS — dropped a couple of clangers there Fergie!!!!!

  15. ikon

    I am thinking Germany would thump Algeria… Germany havent been as convincing this world cup as expected… I am expecting a good performance from Hummels, Muller, Podolski, Lahm and Kroos

  16. Dark Hei

    @peanuts&monkey

    You are absolutely right. I just watched the highlights and the Southampton keeper slipped on a banana skin allowing Giroud an easy tap in. You can’t see that skin unless you have your “Wenga” glasses on.

  17. babatunde

    Dorobucci. U speak like a true communist. If I and millions of other people choose to VOLUNTARILY give our money to people who play the wound leather game, what business of it is yours?

  18. sanmi

    You all are writing Nigeria off at your own peril
    If Giroud doesn’t start, most likely France will go home. Only the formation France used against Switzeland will work. Playing Benzema up top is a bad idea

  19. sanmi

    DoroBucci
    The Value of a thing is what people are willing to pay for it! If the market thinks paying Bale 100m is the right price, that is the price my friend.
    Else how can you explain, A diamond that you can’t eat, that really does nothing for your body having higher price tag than a trailer load of Rice that can feed a community?
    That’s what the market says its worth and that’s final! That’s capitalism my friend and its the best system Man has come up with so far.
    You can always decide not to buy, if you convince enough people to agree with you, you will devalue it.