Morning all, Alex here checking in from Bilbao. Its not actually that sunny here if I’m honest, more tepid and rainy. I’m also here courtesy of #MSMlostluggage challenge and am about to go out and look for a toothbrush and toothpaste as my mouth currently tastes like Jose Mourinho’s soul.
Once again news is slow on the Arsenal front – Francis Coquelin is on pr duties calling for an “instant response” after the findus crispy pancake of an opening day the team served up last weekend. Le Coq in particular has come in for criticism for his performance in that game. From what I remember, he didn’t perform too badly beyond a few misplaced passes but, like the rest of the team, looked off the pace. Again I think there has been a rush to scapegoat him and demand a replacement. We certainly need another body in that position to replace the axis of underwhelmingness that is Arteta and Flamini, but the idea that Coquelin has turned from gold into shit in one game is a nonsense.
On the fabled DM signing, Arsene says the rumours about high-scoring scrabble word Krychowiak are untrue (sure) and that he expects Flamini to stay long term (noooooooo) and that buying players is difficult because there aren’t many about (only 265 million people playing football according to FIFA’s latest survey). Its frustratingly reassuring to know that every year, at precisely the time when you hope to hear positive effusions about the club’s ambitions in the transfer market, Arsene will break out his transfer bingo card, like a dusty and threadbare jacket, for one more outing. Nowadays I think he just says these things for the love of the bantz.
Arsene has also weighed in on the Eva Caneiro row – and by weighed in I mean responded to a question from a journalist.
“It is a problem inside the club that if you are not united it is more difficult. It is the trust and unity that makes the strength… the rules are quite clear that when the referee gives an indication that the medical (staff) can come on, they come on. After that what happens specifically in the situation I don’t know, but the rules are quite clear. It is the referee who makes the decision.”
Damn right. What makes Eva Carneiro’s excoriation so galling is that a) she is being punished for doing her job b) she is being criticised for a lack of loyalty by a man who has shown absolutely none towards her and c) all the focus is on her actions rather than the Chelsea player who feigned injury in order to waste time.
In a game dominated by pig-headed and sexist men, at a club which arguably hosts more of them than anywhere else on the planet, Eva Carneiro has thrived. She is a role model to any woman who wants to make it in professional football. She should be protected and championed by her club, not ostracised and vilified.
So I’m putting it out there, making the case here and now: Arsene sign Eva Carneiro.
Show that classless shitehawk that Arsenal is a club that rewards professionalism and respects the role of women in the game. I would start a change.org petition if I had the inclination to do so – perhaps this calls for a strongly worded letter to Ivan? Some sort of march? Maybe a t-shirt based protest. Lets get this thing going.
Right that’s your lot from me. Pete and I are watching Bilbao v Barcelona tonight so you can expect a hungover match report from one of us tomorrow. What I can tell you about Bilbao is that the calimochos (red wine and cola) are fantastic, the pitxos (any food you can think of served on bread) are delicious, and the people while lovely aren’t that keen to talk to two overdressed English guys who are hammered on red wine. Here’s to a better response tonight!
You can follow me on twitter for more amazing insights @aldo_doel.
Speak soon xxx