VINAI TEMPERS ‘NOW’ EXPECTATIONS, BUT SPEAKS TO STRATEGY

by .

I’m am SO thrilled to be out the backend of this transfer window.

Now the only pain you’ll be feeling is when Tierney picks up a knock on international duty.

This will be a short post today because I am FLYING WOO YES.

According to those in the know, Palace and Eddie did NOT happen because the player asked for too much money. Eddie can smell a free transfer. I don’t know how I feel about this. He did absolutely nothing last season, one would assume that Folarin Balogun is ahead of him this season, so he’s passed for a year of doing nothing.

Where is his agent on this? Shouldn’t you be telling your client to get some game time? What is his free transfer going to be worth after another year of bumming around on the bench?

One player I was excited to see take a loan was Reiss Nelson. He needs confidence and he needs to deliver a BIG season. I cannot wait to get obsessed with Feyenoord this year.

Keeping on the topic of young players, it was interesting to hear Balogun talk about how he bought into whatever Arteta has been saying. He spoke well of what it means to be an Arsenal players and he stated that he was very close to Emile and Bukayo. Balogun just looks good, he’s going to the top, I really like him.

Vinai dropped some words after our extremely messy summer, asking us to come together and be nice. Here’s what he said about the summer.

“Our approach for this window was framed by fully recognising that we are not where we want to be on the pitch — finishing eighth last season, with no European football for the first time in many years,”

“Whilst we would love to jump from where we are to where we want to be in an instant, we need to be realistic that the gap is too large to do that. As such, our activity this window has been focused on youth.

“Our strategy is to fill our squad with some of Europe’s most exciting young talent, with players from both our academy and further afield, that can grow and develop together under Mikel to take us where we want to get to.

“Whilst this will not be overnight, we can make positive progress, and it gives us the best route to future success in a sustainable way.”

Listen, say what you want about all the other bullshit, now the window is closed, we delivered on a new vision. Are the players good enough? Jury is out. But we did what was needed.

  • We binned a lot of players, about £700k a week
  • We lowered the age profile of the squad, average age of our signings is about 22
  • Each player mapped to a very specific profile and most looked well scouted
  • We filled the voids

The ‘move the needle’ merchants really need to give it a rest. If you look at the players we’ve signed and can’t see an improvement, I cannot help you. The problem with a lot of fans is they have a very specific view of what a good signing is, that’s usually a popular Youtube sensation, someone with good football manager numbers, someone with a fancy name. A Grover asked me yesterday if I was worried that I don’t know much about the players… not really, if Arsenal did things properly, the team working those deals should know what’s going on better than you or I.

We’re also not in the market for ‘move the needle’ players. Grealish, Sancho, Locatelli, and Varane are not moving to us. The way we’ve worked the market is best suited to our needs. We’ve signed young players who might take a year to bed in, but when they settle, they’ll be ready to compete at the highest level.

Well, that’s the hope.

There are still justified doubts. We haven’t been good at recruiting, fans don’t trust the process, and we still have no idea what Arteta is trying to do with his squad.

There’s also a lot of grim PR around the club. Unhappy squad players. Factions within the club. Power grabs. Those issues won’t go away with a 10 game run of wins I’m afraid.

Arteta’s career fate might have already been decided, but he can prolong it if he gets his shit together. As I suspected yesterday, Arsenal played a friendly against Brentford and absolutely spanked them 4-0.

People don’t want to hear it, but Arsenal are not a bad team. We have a lot of good players and you’ll see that after the break. If you don’t, Arteta will lose his job and someone else will bring them up to their level which is higher than you think.

Ramsdale

Tomi White Gabriel Tierney

Lokonga Partey

Odegaard

Saka Auba ESR

Cut and paste the names around, but don’t tell me that’s not a sexy team that could do some damage after the break.

On that note, take in my stint on the Latte Firm OR the Arsenal Opinion OR both.

ACAST | SPOTIFY | iHEART | ANDROID


729 Responses to “VINAI TEMPERS ‘NOW’ EXPECTATIONS, BUT SPEAKS TO STRATEGY”

Jump to comment form ↓

  1. Dissenter

    Edu Gasper: “”Now let’s put it into context. For example, in the midfield, you have Granit Xhaka and Thomas Partey. So, for me and for Mikel it doesn’t make sense to sign another player to be on top of them if they are the ones that are going to be playing.”

    When you start off with an erroneous assumption that a midfield of Partey and Xhaka is quality enough, everything that flows will be rubbish

    Xhaka is Xha but is he going to bring out the best in Partey, who hasn’t started firing yet.
    Why didn’t they look at the Saul type of miflielder like Aouar or Renato Sanchez or just get Bissouma and be done with it,.

    Partey is going to be asked to do too much because he has to carry the water for Odegaard and Xhaka. He’s going to get injured a lot this season.

  2. Tony

    Almunia China’s right keep all you write and then look to see what can be done.

    You only have a small audience here compared to all the gooners in the world.

    Maybe Pedro doing the marketing for you in America.

    K’phobe you spotted my deliberate mistake yesterday. Hmm that was a howler thanks for the correction. I hate to make mistakes but that made me laugh. I was happily flying yesterday morning. My brain was doing cartwheels and spinning tops and my happy pill was just coming up in a rush. I swear there is some derivative of MDMA in the tablet.

    I know it (MDMA) was originally used in both world wars as a truth drug. :after it was used in the help of mental disorders. It’s a long time since I read up on it (90s) so I’m Going from memory here.

    I Think I dropped a few other minor clangers: Salisbury Plain instead of Solsbury Hill being one with Pierre who no doubt will never let me live that one down.

    Anyway, Thanks to the evening crew I thought I was going to have a tough day when I woke up but chatting with you all was a real tonic, especially fun there absence of a game this weekend.

    Thought I’d get this one done before scanning the media.

    Bacary
    Thanks again for your kinds words.I’m really happy my posts are enjoyed as much as I enjoy writing them.

  3. China1

    The folly of depending on a partey xhaka midfield is threefold

    – Partey cannot stay fit
    – Xhaka is not very good
    – Even when both play together it’s not like they dominate midfields is it? This is hardly a petit and vieira combo is it?

    It’s what I’ve said all summer – the success or failure of arsenals midfield (and season) hangs enormously on whether or not lokonga is good enough to put the midfield on his back with a regularly unfit partey and captain average alongside him.

    Lokonga looks great but this is the dumbest strategy ever

  4. MD-Gunner

    If there is a shred of truth to the Conte story then I feel the prediction after the BHA game Oct 2nd the change will come.

  5. Tony

    Reading through the many posts regarding Edu’s interview just confirms the non existing winning mentality.

    It’s no wonder we are where we are when you have zero leadership throughout the club; just the blind leading the blind as it were with no one whiting to address the real issues.

    It’s all been said before by many here.

    Still the next few games will have added excitement of Arteta biting the dust at last.

    Edu has to go too after that interview. He can become assistant to there new DoF or side stepped into managing scouts in some way.

    So little in the news to write about that hasn’t been repeated here or in the media.

    China I appreciate you thinking I have a book in me, but I’m not that interesting that would merit a book. I think it’s a bit different here because we all have feel good ideas about each other because we chat so much and in a way form a bond through our support of The Arsenal. As long as posters here enjoy the recollections, I’m happy to relate them.

    You certainly like and know your bass guitars China. I still love the Ampeg double 18 inch speaks in the tall cab. Wonderful sound to mix but a nightmare because bass player are always turning their amps up in stage and we engineers would be always telling our stage sound guys doing the monitors ands IEMs to turn the amp down. A constant fight.

    Back in 79 I got the gig to go out on the Two Tone tour as tour the manager. and sound engineer for Madness and Selector. The specials had their own guy.

    It was a crazy tour as you’d imagine with Ska sound and skinheads en mass. As an example I think it was at the Demonfort hall in the UK. Anyway, the Specials dancer, a bit of a hard man, was getting crazy complaining about his monitor not being loud enough.

    Problem was when you have a large band on stage, monitor sound can be really difficult, especially with the bass up loud overspill of frequencies from various instruments and vox can make the sound messy..

    In the end the dancer had had enough and ran over to the stage sound guy who, looked up and was knocked out cold by the dancer. Luckily, the main technician who could build those desks and was a rocket scientist who got into rock and roll took overfed that night and I had to get a replacement.

    Just remembered I was going to relate a Malta story and got lost in the very eventful 2 tone tour. I’ll come back to that.

    I would love one day to have a long weekend in Bangkok with the Evening crew and others, such as K’Phobe, Almunia, Sid and Pedro who we couldn’t have a party weekend without.

    Just a thought to have something to look forward to when Covid is no more. Any takers?

  6. China1

    Yeah I don’t see conte joining us

    He just won the league and was complaining about a lack of money to spend I think? Now arsenal have just blown their load financially and the end result was a team that can’t even commit to a top 8 finish with confidence and has an average age of about 14. That’s not conte’s area

    He turned down spurs who are in much better shape than us (still shit tho). Arsenal are just pure banter

  7. China1

    Tony it actually makes me happy to hear of bassists being a pain and turning their volume up

    The reason being I think there are too many bassists from the 90s onwards in particular who just decided to blend into the background which has always bothered me

    Like I’m not saying bass needs to be front and center of every song, it really doesn’t, but something happened after the 80s whereby there was almost this acceptance of bass being the bland irrelevance of music. When you compare it to disco, funk, pop and rock in the 70s and 80s where bass was very often a driving force in music even if less inclined towards complex melodies or solos than lead guitar. 90s hip hop didn’t follow that trend of the ‘blandifying’ of bass but most other genres did. I remember getting quite annoyed at a gig in Bristol not long before I came here where this guy was playing a rickenbacker. Beautiful bass, they have fabulous tone for rock music and his was vintage as well. Must have set him back at least 2k sterling. And he just did that modern rock thing of having his volume unnecessarily low and just playing roots to match whatever the guitarist was playing as well so there was basically no distinction with the guitar. Such a disappointing lack of musical initiative imo

    I remember my brother who was also a bassist complaining to me after one of his gigs that he was struggling to give his bass playing any character because of the overbearing guitar dumping on his space in the music. I told him to make artificial space and differentiate himself by playing only on the offbeat in certain parts which turned out to be pretty solid advice if I say so myself!

    Anyway that’s a real pet hate of mine. The combination of guitarists who don’t understand the value of bass and even worse (and usually at the same time) bassists as I say ‘with low self esteem’ doing their best mesut ozil impression to vanish into the music. Bass is powerful! Own that shit!

  8. China1

    I can also say it’s fucking HARD to find a guitarist who is interested in playing rhythm guitar with you

    Everyone’s gotta be the lead, and fill up the whole space. I always found music to effectively be just a game of space and so many guitarists (however technically gifted) have no concept of it. It’s like watching kids football where you have the entire team chasing after the ball in an ugly mass and no one appreciating the value or power that comes from playing to your own position. Meanwhile mr guitarist is not only chasing the ball wherever it goes but also trying to do far too many step overs and unwilling to ever pass back to a cultured CB who can pick out a nice through ball. The analogy is so real!

    That’s why I think Aja is a contender for greatest album ever. Musically it’s spectacular but the ultimate achievement stands in the space. So many instruments, so much going on but due to the incredible arrangement and production there’s still somehow so much SPACE in the sound. Every detail can be picked out. You can listen to each song 20 times and keep noticing more and more. It’s musical wizardry, it really is.

    I was in a few bands over the years tho most of my music I just recorded myself on my ghetto GarageBand setup on my Mac lol. But the most fun I had was in a band where we only had only me on bass and my friend on drums and his SP404. My brother also periodically would join and leave the band and add bongos, triangle (lol) and a bit of keys. The band was really strange and out there but great fun

  9. China1

    If Home at last from Aja was a swimming pool you could walk through it and come out the other side dry from all that magical space

  10. Tony

    China it’s a difficult balance, especially as the as belongs to the drums and viz a viz. The baking track (drums and bass) is the essential core of the music. Deep colours on the musical rainbow.

    You often find bass players are multi instrument playing. Most can play keys and often Sax.

    The better the drummer and bassist the smarter the guitars and vocals have to be filling in spaces bu also leaving spaces open to add feel.. When you add 2 drummers in the mix ala Joe Bonamassa and the bassist can really have fun.

    In The Room here I can get that type of live bass feel on the chest and in the gym with the PA system. I like studio recordings but I’m obviously a live music guy first.

    Alan Spenner was a great bassist (Joe Cocker, Roxy music and so many more) was bassist for Murray Head when I first met and worked with him. Brilliant bassist and great guy to spend time with. Nightmare to mix as he did love to get messy before playing. So, he’d keep turning his bass up because he wanted to feel his double Ampegs pounding his chest. To do that he’d often drone out the stage sound. He was happy, he was in his little bubble being bounced around by his bass sounds.

    He introduced me to the Doll’s House the musos crash pad in west London and late night parties where not much sleeping got done at night.

    You’re right, though, bass players did step back in the mid 80s onwards. Level 42 and Mark King broke the mould. He could play and was tight with jazz funk slapping that bass.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9x1RcVrGjGM

    My fav bassist is Leland Sklar.

  11. Tony

    Just read your follow on post.

    More mature guitarists say in there 40s+ will enjoy playing rhythm and add some kicks after.

    You could do the lot your self China. I know it’s more difficult because creating feel is difficult going solo.

    Are there many musos in your city? Studios? Rehearsal rooms? I guess with your family playing is time sensitive.

    Who knows in the future China? You’re still young and my kids started learning to play around 8 years old. Your son will be old enough to play with you before you know it.

  12. China1

    My son likes me to play acoustic guitar along with him when he practices piano which is one of my great little pleasures in life (I’m shit at guitar and just play it as a bass lol) but seeing his engagement with it is really rewarding

    There is actually a studio locally but I’ve never bothered to go on as my music making these days is only a tiny fraction of what it was in my school college and uni days sadly

    But about 5 years ago I did chuck together a concept album which was based off an idea one of my old band’s songs gave me about 10 years ago. It was chucked together in a week or so after work and I did it in GarageBand. The production quality is quite varied and one day I’d like to go back and really attack it again but I’ve never got round to it. Was relatively happy with it considering it was put together quickly tho.

    It’s all instrumental but The actual story it tells is quite out there but I’ve always found it fun to have friends listen to it first and tell me what they think it’s about before they actually know

  13. China1

    I’ll have to check some of those out. One of the only multiple drummer bands I know was Ojos de Brujo who are monsters of percussion and pull it off amazingly. Great bassist too. Their song Colours is badass. I saw them live at the Bristol Colston Hall! Great memory

  14. China1

    I find edus comments more than a little concerning

    He said we have all these good young players who are to be guided by the 5 senior first choice players

    These 5 senior players he cites are
    Auba – dreadful season and has question marks about his leadership when he’s not scoring
    Laca – one year left on his deal
    Xhaka – average player and no leadership quality. Just got sent off for no reason and caught covid because he was too dumb to take a vaccine. Can’t lead by ability or example
    Leno – one year left on his deal, made noises about wanting to leave. Poor form for ages
    Partey – sure, when he’s fit.

    5 leaders and only one of them is part of the future. On top of that auba and laca don’t always play together. Realistically only 3 of them will be on the pitch at any given time and of those 3 at least two of them are usually on bad form or not good enough to start with. Bonkers stuff

  15. S Asoa

    Aluminas

    You are a re- incarnation of Rowling. OK, she is alive, but given up on Harry Potter.
    The truism in the fantasy. So effortlessly achieved.
    My suggestion
    Guess you should produce quite a few shorts until after Shiterta, ,Edu get fired and a few more when lots of dirty linen get out later on. Please compile into a PDF book.. We would like to purchase it online for a review of how bad things were ( Will need to add a piece in EnglandBeast), or for good after dinner laughs.
    Thanks Aluminiasnonore

  16. Tony

    China when my son was about 3 we gave him one of those guitars that played songs but also had lights on the fretboard so he could bash out unintelligible rifts. It came with a mic and stand. he was made up with that until he discovered the virtues of the iPad.

    He’s met his classmates online and a few play different instruments so they’ve been talking about playing together post covid.

    We’ll see how serious they get about wanting to lay down tracks.

    Lovely hearing the bond you have with your son. It’s so precious.

  17. Sid

    @Almuniasnomore, i can be your Kia, will you be my Willian?

    I don’t have money on my mind
    Money on my mind
    I do it for, I do it for the love

  18. Pierre

    Tony
    “You’re right, though, bass players did step back in the mid 80s onwards. Level 42 and Mark King broke the mould. He could play and was tight with jazz funk slapping that bass.”

    You mentioning Mark king brought me flashbacks from back in the 80’/90’s when the bass player in our band was obsessed with him and in the end actually thought that Mark King was nicking his bass lines.

    He was bonkers , he actually went to Mark King’s residence in the isle of wight to confront him about the nicking of the bass lines..

    He bought a Jaydee bass guitar which of course was the same make as Mark king’s and to be fair to our bass player , he could rip off Mark king’s bass lines with ease.

    Great bass player but hard work.

  19. Pierre

    Have to say that i am just as impressed with Almuniasaynomore’s writing.

    The thing is , it probably comes quite easy to him so he doesn’t realise that he has a gift for it..

  20. Kroenkephobe

    Pierre
    I’m equally as impressed with your unflagging devotion towards two of the most false idols that ever set foot in the club. The lazy, bug eyed, disloyal, teutonic parasite (and the worst signing by far this club has ever made) and the chihuahua-headed alsatian (weird mongrel). The two architects of our present crippling malaise which is being more than ably continued by the cretins currently holding such positions.

    Just wanted to contribute something positive to the debate. Phew – I feel a bit better for that. Now back to the joss sticks and muesli.

  21. Kroenkephobe

    Tony and China
    Bassists are hugely underrated I’d say.

    Paul Simenon of the Clash on tracks like Guns of Brixton or Spanish Guns (or Guns of Hackney or SF!). I also though Mark King came up with some original sounds but level 42 got way too poppy by the end. Bernard Edwards who played with Nile Rodgers in Chic who developed huge numbers of bass riffs that were used in other later songs. And Peter Hook of Joy Division/New Order another who took an original approach to bass playing. I love hearing it being played on its own too.

  22. englandsbest

    I’m a jazz fan who grew up listening to popular music on the radio – American stuff mostly, Glen Miller, Nat Cole trio. Inks Spots, for me all part of the jazz world. My fave for a time was Louis Jordan Tympany 5, rhythm and blues. After the war, though, pop music became unbearably dull, so the emergence of Chuck Berry, etc was a kind of relief. For me, R & B, early rock, were simply primitive versions of jazz.

    A few guys (and maybe gals) took pop up a level, notably Bob Dylan, the Beatles. But for the most part Rock seems to me what it has always been, a primitive offshoot of Jazz based on 8 bar Blues.

  23. Graham62

    Something to look forward to today .

    England playing.

    I know, it’s only Andorra.

    The joys of watching a team who genuinely want to play together.

  24. China1

    I’ve never really had a specific favourite bassist (although lots like mark king were certainly fun to follow), but I have 10000 favourite basslines.

    Since we were on the topic of Pink Floyd the other day, Sorrow had a fantastic bassline. One of my favourite rock basslines

    Tho I always loved 90s hip hop for some of the best grooves. California love allllll day

  25. China1

    Sorrow is basically just a half hour Dave Gilmour guitargasm underpinned by that never ending grooving drone on bass and the banging kick and snare.

    And dear lord it’s value for money!

  26. Pierre

    Tony
    “Pierre if your bassist played Mark king with ease, your band must have been decent. Care to share more?”

    The hard part was getting the bass player to slow down as he could slap (the bass) for England, his fingers were everywhere…..better stop there or Sid will get too excited

    What I will say is that it is easy to write a decent song but not so easy to write a song that has that special sauce..

    At the end of the day I had some great times usually in a recording studio(in a basement somewhere) as I play keyboards( average)and loved the recording side of music more than playing live…

    I’m more into golf now more than music though I did write a little ditty for my 10 year old grandson titled “he’s a chav” after he informed me that after the europa final defeat to Chelsea that he was now a Chelsea supporter.

  27. Nelson

    This Antonio Conte rumour may have some true to it. KSE has invested quite a bit in the last TW. I would be more patient with Conte. He is a world class coach. The club would be in good hand finally. Arteta, not so much!

  28. cheffy

    I always thought that consistency and gameplay was supposed to start turning out in the second half of last season and therefore not achieving top 4 would be excused. But top 4 would be the absolute requirement for this season. We already excused the top 4 requirement last season. I cannot believe people are still talking about gameplay and consistency into this season.

  29. Paolo

    Great goal from Arsenal Women’s team!! Think they would beat our men’s team right now

    Move was quick & direct, quite refreshing to see.. oh & a striker than can finish from one chance!!

  30. Elmo

    I can’t see any coherence in the owners “accepting mediocrity.” They are losing HUGE amounts of money at the moment, both in annual losses, and the enterprise value of the club tanking as we lose prestige. American sports-entertainment billionaires don’t accept losing money; they only happen to do so when they get involved in European football because they don’t have a clue about the culture or the game. The Kroenkes just bought a better asset, but they’ll eventually be washed out just like Ellis Short, Randy Lerner, Hicks & Gillett etc.

    Remember these fools are still sanctioning the 10th highest wage bill in Europe (5th in PL), by a margin the largest gross transfer spenders in Europe this summer, and the 3rd highest PL net transfer spenders over the past 5 years. At a MINIMUM based on the money going out, the par expectation should be a Top 4 challenge every year (and if missing that, 5th place). The problem is the owners don’t have a clue, so appoint senior executives who don’t have a clue, who appoint people to run the football side that don’t have a clue.

    We’re just going to have to wait them out (a few more seasons of £70m+ losses) and hope we’re still an attractive enough position for someone wealthy and competent to pick up and resurrect.

    On a side note, looks like NL derby tickets haven’t sold out amongst silver / red members (usually the 3.5k allocation to Red would go in minutes at 10AM on the Monday they went on sale), just as the Chelsea home game didn’t sell out, and from looks of things, plenty for Norwich. Can’t remember that happening in the Emirates years (obviously always some stuff popping up separately on TicketExchange).
    They’re going to have to reduce Cat A prices by £20 at each price point, to match what West Ham charge. There’s only a limited number of people willing to spend £80-100 to watch a boring mid-table side get battered at home, even in London.

  31. Paolo

    Listen to new women’s coach post match interview.. sounds like he knows football & talked about making adjustments to way Chelsea were playing in the match itself!!

    Very impressive interview. We’ll done Arsenal Women I enjoyed what I saw of the game.

  32. Dissenter

    Yea< the Kroenkes are really daft
    No reasonable person spends so much money and leaves it to a bunch of pretend football people to wats3 it all away.
    What they re doing is no better than Mike Ashley not spending money at Newcastle.

  33. Valentin

    Dissenter,

    It will soon dawn on them that they have hired a trio of doofus. The Kroenke’s don’t care whether the results are well below fans’ expectation. But they will care when they will start to feel the financial implications of home matches not sold out.

    I expect that Arteta will be sacked at the beginning of December but not before. Sacking him after a defeat to Norwich or Burnley would be a stupid move. It would just confirm that they did not trust him before the international break. In which case why not sack him before and give time to his successor to prepare the team and potentially impact the recruitment.

    I am willing to be that whoever comes after Arteta will demand a complete overhaul of the midfield and will potentially sell a few CBs.

  34. sly

    Val/Diss
    I think KSE are impacted by below par results also. They have lost out on champion’s league and for what its worth Europa league revenue. Fan discontentment leads to reduced revenue also.
    Arsenal doing well equals good business
    This is why I think acute KSE will be alarmed by the predicament over the last 4-5 years.
    I agree that Arteta will be given a run of games but do not see him lasting beyond September/October if this trend continues which is likely
    The vision of building a base of youth supplanted with mature quality players makes a lot of sense and takes ball’s to implement
    I think its the way to go
    Arteta needs to be replaced urgently next
    this dark period will hopefully instigate needed change
    not sure KSE can fritter away another half billion plus
    if they can kudos to them

  35. Kroenkephobe

    Slow day – Oliver’s Army by the great Elvis Costello.

    Don’t keep bulshitting
    I’ve had enough all ri-i-ght
    You’ve ruined Thomas Partey
    This team is mediocre shite
    Call careers information
    Segunda liga’s your new destination

    Arteta’s army is on its way
    Daniel Farke will have his day-y-y
    And I would rather watch anything else
    Than Arsenal’s dull U-shaped play

    There was old champagne charlie
    Prince Pedro, Rich and Englandsbest
    They form a minority party
    That loves Tets and wants to think he’s blessed
    Only takes Stan’s itchy trigger
    To sign up conte for some extra rigour

    Arteta’s Army has had its day
    The style of football is so passe
    And I would rather do anything else
    Than hear what he’s got to say

    Aouar was up for grabs
    Willian’s gone he took his flab
    We could have signed that moriba
    And not loaned out William saliba

  36. Dissenter

    Arsenal really has no soul anymore
    I don’t think any of the people in charge understand the club.
    Even the fans can’t agree about what Arsenal stands for anymore.

  37. Valentin

    BTW, the Guendouzi fee is €10 millions or less than £9 millions.
    The guy is now in the France international squad. He is producing excellent performance at Marseille. Ever in Germany the coach who got in a fight with him initially, then quickly change his tune and systematically used him thereafter because he simply was good. We should try to make one of the lynchpin of our midfield, but no we sell him for peanuts.

    We are going to lose Saliba for peanuts as well because they are spiky and do not behave like subservient yes men to Arteta. The recruitment by Arteta of two CBs with less experience and quality than him, is a sure indication that Arteta does not want him.

    For the fee we paid for Ødegaard, I would have taken Aurélien Tchouameni. Athletic, very good defensive awareness, but with a good eye for forward passes.

  38. Dissenter

    Valentin
    Everyone but theArteta-worshipers knew the non-negotiables stuff was BS. A better manager would have found ways to help a young temperamental player fulfill his potential.
    Mislintat and Raul’s work with Guen and Saliba should have been continued. It would have saved us from wasting £50 million on Brighton’s smallest and least experienced defender.

  39. Dissenter

    ‘For the fee we paid for Ødegaard, I would have taken Aurélien Tchouameni. Athletic, very good defensive awareness, but with a good eye for forward passes’

    But Arteta liked Odegaard, didn’t he
    Now we have two midfielders who will help to slow down out game further

  40. Alexanderhenry

    Pedro

    I’m not sure your assertion that Arteta may lose his job, or even that he is under any real pressure at Arsenal is sincere.

    I think you know arsenal is sticking with him and despite your criticism , I believe you still believe he’s the real deal.

    Whether that proves to be the case, Vinai’s statement reads like a pretty resounding and characteristically corporate sounding endorsement of both Arteta and the ‘process’.
    It also reads straight from the arsenal play book.
    Let’s be honest we’ve heard all this before- from gazidis, wenger, josh etc.
    Project youth, ‘we don’t buy stars, we make them’ , Arsenal’s ‘values’.
    I don’t think ‘the process’ has changed much at Arsenal.
    What has changed is the club’s standing in English football.

    Let’s hope Arteta can change that.

  41. TheLegendaryDB10

    Lolz. Had to rant that Edu has been dead silent so far and guess what? There he is in full PR mode with an interesting interview with Sky Sports.

    Why interesting? Bar the subtle attempts by Geoff
    Shreeves at trying to ask the questions we definitively all want answered, we have Edu coming up with these pearlers:

    “If we start to see the squad together, we believe in the squad.”

    What guff…

    “I don’t want to go for top four or top six or top eight or top 10. I’m just really looking forward to seeing this squad play together. I’m really looking forward to seeing everyone fit.

    There he said it. Top 4 is not even the ambition.

    That explains why MA is still here.

    And finally, the word “future” is used so often through out the interview with no actual time frame given, that it just smacks of bullshit. It just shows that there is no plan and they are making it all up as they go along.

    Worrying to say the least.

  42. Lamia

    The commentator just stated Xhaka refused a covid vaccination and now has covid. If this is true, is there no level of idiocy that this player will not defend . He should be fired by the club and his wages frozen.

  43. Thorough

    We are such dumb fuckwits.
    Our priority was to replace Ozil because his goals and assists, which weren’t so many, had dried up. Then we go and get a player even as barren and impotent than Ozil. He’s so much like the barren Ozil even there initis are the same – MO.

  44. Tom

    “This Antonio Conte rumour may have some true to it. KSE has invested quite a bit in the last TW. I would be more patient with Conte. He is a world class coach. The club would be in good hand finally. Arteta, not so much!“

    It would make more sense to throw stupid money at a Conte type manager than paying stupid money for non-elite players like Ramsdale and White, while hoping Arteta can extract value from them.

    Arsenal have easily overpaid for these two in the region of 25-30m, throw in Arteta’s wages of 5m per year into the mix and that’s Conte’s two years wages right there.

    Make him the highest paid manager in the PL to satisfy his ego and if it doesn’t work out, that’s still less money lost than what we’ve waisted paying 75m for Pepe.

  45. Guns of SF

    wtf happened
    lol

    brazil authorities should not have allowed those 4 players in.
    AFA should not have allowed the said players to even travel.

    Comedy of errors all around

  46. Kris

    Mavropanos again starts for Greece. He’s 23 and a starter for Greece and Stuttgart, and we’re going to get 3m for him, with add-ons potentially 5m??
    Total incompetence. If we don’t want him, should have loaned him to the Championship and easily get 8 – 10m for him.

    Runarsson started for Iceland. Again concedes a ridiculous goal, and a few minutes later almost a repeat of one of the City goals. This guy is League 1 level. Embarrassment for whoever signed him for Arsenal.

  47. Guns of SF

    man I really wanted to see braz arg-

    typical that something like this would happen I guess…
    bummer…

    I would suggest rapid covid tests for all players… and get the game going tomorrow…

    Test the 4 Argentines that broke QT… if they are clear, then???!

    Play the game!

  48. Valentin

    Kris,

    Trust the process.

    I said it last summer and again this summer, I do not understand why Arsenal did not try in pre season a combination of Saliba, Mavrapanos. And if we wanted to go with 3 at the back, Gabriel could have been introduced or Daniel Ballard who is likely to attract bid after his performance for club and Northern Ireland.

  49. Valentin

    Guns of SF,

    The issue is not whether they are testing negative, it is about the Argentinian players lying on their entry form.
    That makes me laugh that suddenly Brazilian authoritoes are very strict on who can enter the country. For months their president did not believe in Covid and dismiss it. He even tried to ban the use of mask in public places. That disease is rampant there because of his actions.

    One of my brother lives in neighbouring French Guyana. Covid is killing people there because of the way Brazilians flouted French rules. Social distancing and wearing mask is an alien concept for them.

  50. Nelson

    I like what I hear from Conte:

    “I think that I am not someone who is happy with just a comfortable situation. I always chose the most difficult situation instead.”

    Is it difficult enough coaching a team that couldn’t score any goal and has a 20% possession stats?

  51. Guns of SF

    I think AFA is also complicit allowing these players to travel, knowing the QT process.
    If true they lied, that is fucking outrageous.
    I hope its not true…

    Brazil without 9 players due to their QT…
    Fred, Thiago and others not with the team….

    Some terrible miscommunication going on…..

  52. Dissenter

    Vinai; ““Our strategy is to fill our squad with some of Europe’s most exciting young talent, with players from both our academy and further afield, that can grow and develop together under Mikel to take us where we want to get to.
    “Whilst this will not be overnight, we can make positive progress, and it gives us the best route to future success in a sustainable way”

    Can Ramsdale be considered as one the exciting young keepers on the continent?

    Did we really sign “some of Europe’s most exciting talents this summer?

  53. Guns of SF

    AFA were notified apparently, but some reporting they dressed the players anyhow. The feds came to the hotel but the bus left to the stadium, and AFA locked the locker room so the feds could not get the players. They had to go on to the pitch.

    Some are saying on twitter brazil allowed players to NOT qt due to the games being played.

    BUT!, Brazil is missing 9 players due to them being in England or Europe.

    Something stinks here. I think both sides have some complicity

  54. Guns of SF

    Tom Morgan
    Sun, September 5, 2021, 11:50 AM
    Neymar and Lionel Messi consult with Brazilian health officials mid-match – SHUTTERSTOCK
    Neymar and Lionel Messi consult with Brazilian health officials mid-match – SHUTTERSTOCK

    Brazil’s match with Argentina was suspended in farce on Sunday evening after health officials invaded the pitch to deport four Premier League players accused of misleading authorities over their flights from the UK.

    Aston Villa’s Emiliano Buendia and Emiliano Martinez as well as Tottenham’s Giovani Lo Celso and Cristian Romero had been told to isolate just two hours before their World Cup qualifier in Sao Paulo. Argentina bosses ignored the warning, however, with Martínez, Romero and Lo Celso all starting the game.

    As a result, just 10 minutes into the match, an army of government officials in suits walked onto the pitch to tell the referee to stop the game. Lengthy deliberations then ensued between Argentina, Brazil, CONEMBOL – the South American Football Confederation – and health authorities before the match was eventually called off almost an hour later.

    Authorities had earlier demanded the players should quarantine and leave the country immediately. The intervention from Anvisa, the Brazilian health governing body, is the latest twist in a saga that saw Brazil react angrily last week over a Premier League pact to stop players travelling to countries on the UK Government’s red list due to the subsequent impact on quarantining.
    – ADVERTISEMENT –

    Spurs and Villa inexplicably broke the agreement by releasing the four Argentine players, but Brazil had been deprived of star names due to Liverpool and Manchester City keeping their South American talent in the UK.

    The Argentinians had flown into Brazil on Friday, the day after beating Venezuela 3-1 in a World Cup qualifier in Caracas. However, Anvisa left it until three hours before kick off in Sao Paulo to issue a statement saying the four players should have quarantined on arrival in Brazil because the UK is on its own red list.

    “Anvisa considers the situation a serious health risk and so has asked local health authorities to determine the immediate quarantine of the players, who are stopped from participating in any activity and should be prevented from remaining on Brazilian soil,” Anvisa said in a statement.

    After health officials in suits walked on to the pitch at around 8.08pm, the Argentina players were led back towards the changing rooms, while Brazilian players were seen in extensive discussions with the referee and men in suits on the sidelines.

    Eventually, as the Argentina squad was led away from the stadium, the Brazil players had a training session on the pitch, which was still screened live on national TV channels.

    In the aftermath, CONEMBOL have said the referee and match delegate will now submit a report to FIFA’s disciplinary committee. A decision on whether the game could be resumed is pending.

    If Argentina’s players are found to have breached health protocols, Fifa has to award the forfeit victory to Brazil.

    The scenes come a week after the likes of Liverpool and Manchester City held firm over their refusal to release players for World Cup qualifiers in countries deemed high risk.
    Numerous high-profile Brazilian players have not been released by their clubs – GETTY IMAGES
    Numerous high-profile Brazilian players have not been released by their clubs – GETTY IMAGES

    That provoked fury in Brazil, who are without Alisson, Fabinho, Roberto Firmino (Liverpool), Ederson, Gabriel Jesus (Manchester City), Thiago Silva (Chelsea), Fred (Manchester United), Richarlison (Everton) and Raphinha (Leeds).

    Brazil, however, deems the UK just as risky a destination over its high Covid-19 rates. Under Brazilian rules, visitors who have been in the UK in the 14 days before entering the country must quarantine for 14 days on arrival.

    Anvisa said it was tipped off that the four players did not state that information on their immigration forms and on Sunday said they confirmed the details given were “false”.

    In Anvisa’s earlier statement, the agency said the players had supplied “false information in an official form of the Brazilian sanitary authority”.

    “After a meeting with the health authorities, it was confirmed, after consulting the passports of the four players involved, that the athletes failed to comply with the rule for the entry of travellers on Brazilian soil, provided for in Interministerial Ordinance No. 655, of 2021, which provides that foreign travellers who have passed through the United Kingdom, South Africa, Northern Ireland and India in the last 14 days, are prevented from entering Brazil.

    “The players in question declared that they have not passed through any of the four countries with restrictions in the last 14 days.

    “The travellers arrived in Brazil by flight from Caracas/Venezuela to Guarulhos. However, unofficial news reached Anvisa reporting alleged false statements made by such travellers… Anvisa considers the situation a serious health risk, and therefore advised the local health authorities to determine the immediate quarantine of players, who are prevented from participating in any activity and must be prevented from remaining in Brazilian territory, pursuant to art. 11, of Federal Law No. 6437/77.”

    The four England-based players are already facing quarantine and extra testing when they return to the UK. The Premier League declined to comment when contacted by Telegraph Sport.

  55. Guns of SF

    Spurs allowed them to travel, now they are being put into QT on arrival in UK….

    LMAO!!!!

    Stupid Villa as well…

    I mean I know we dont have the sharpest tools in the shed running Arsenal but this was just hilarious…

    Interesting that all the other EPL teams DID NOT release their players for these matches in south america.

    I guess villa and spuds did not get the memo

  56. Guns of SF

    Brazil without 9 players… I am sure they would have loved them to play.

    Hope there is a work around tho, and they play tomorrow….

  57. China1

    This Argentina Brazil mess is bizarre and pretty suspicious

    There was really no way they could manage this before kick off?

    Looks more like a political stunt. From a country where their gov doesn’t even believe in covid anyway….

  58. MD-Gunner

    Just finished listening to ESPN-FC and the question regarding Conte moving to Arsenal.came up and Gabe Marcotti made a few excellent points.

    1st It is normal in football that persons who are called intermediaries, who are not Conte’s agents but they have connections to Conte would approach clubs about a possible deal, and yes they approached Arsenal. On the other hand it does not look like Arsenal approached Conte or any intermediaries.
    2nd Conte wants to get back into football.
    3rd there are not many big clubs in Europe he can go to. Arsenal is a big club in the EPL with a lot of history. There really is no other club in the EPL with a large global following where he could go to. Man Utd perhaps but he would have to wait.. Serie A, he just left Inter and the other big Serie A all have new managers.
    Therefore Gabe Marcotti said, if Arteta is failing badly in the next so many games and if KSE is willing to put money into the Conte project, there is a good chance that he would take on the job, because he could certainly get the best out of the existing squad and the fans would be super excited.

    So, this certainly looks much better then just a click bait article but it does have a real chance for me, because he wants a job and there are very few clubs available that he can go to. Whether Conte is the right fir is a different story, but he most definitely is an improvement over the present clown.

  59. cheffy

    Guns of SF

    What I got from that Twitter thread was Charlie Kane’s proud mug in front of a wall of Kane headlines and turning up daily “suited and booted”. Lol.

  60. Tony

    Morning all
    What a fiasco in Brazil.

    It’s reported that Stan and Edu discussed the transfer strategy. It was agreed that they would buy young players because we had enough older, experienced players to bring them into the team and help them gain experience.

    That begs the question who are the older players?

    Auba Can’t score to save his life against PL teams. He’s also mostly a tap in merchant
    Laca Probably the best out of the lot for helping youngsters in training not so much on the pitch.
    Xhaka Lessons in anti football and idiocy in general but youths know how to look after keys now
    Bellerin Best for fashion tips and getting in the way of Pepe & how not to do throw ins
    Cedric Expert at explaining Poirot detective condnundrums
    Chambers How to fly under the radar at a PL club for 9 years and not be sold
    Elneny As with Chambers and his expertise in side and back passing.

    Seems to me that that logic was unbelievably flawed if Edu used SAF and the kids; Beckham and co, who saved his job with Bruce, Pallister & Cantana, et al

    The other really interesting tidbit is that we are looking for a throw-in coach. Tactically, I can understand that, but we’d better get rid of Bellerin first.

    So little going on to really get one’s teeth into writing.

    Pierre
    Thanks for the candid look at your music days. When you said you used to go to Dingwalls and gigs in Camden I thought there was a lot more to you than football. Did you go to the Hope & Anchor in Islington with Big John booking the acts? It was part of what was called the northern circuit in London.

    Maybe, one day you’ll finish that song and YT it here. I’d certainly love to hear it.

    Never too late to finish a song, Pierre.

    You should definitely write an original with K’phobe, Almunia and Words. China on bass?

  61. Tony

    MD I have been secretly hoping things are moving behind the scenes with Conte or an elite DoF.

    Generally, when the club says it’s backing its manager, it really is the kiss of death for that manager being on borrowed time. The news about how long Arteta has got is confusing. Some reports say the next 5 games. Some say 10 games and others have said Xmas is the managerial cut off date.

    All we can do it wait and go game by game.

  62. MD-Gunner

    Tony, I have my eyes on Oct 2nd after the BHA game finishes if we have 2-4 points total he will be gone and Englandsworst the best troll on this blog will again dine on delicious crow.

  63. Tony

    K’phobe another gem from you.

    Thought I’d have a go

    Let it Rain by Ed Sheeren would be a good song to make a chant out of:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XfDQuw0icew

    When the sins of Arteta
    Weigh down in our football souls
    And the pain of our football
    I’ll shall not follow
    Well, I know there came the non negotiables
    To refine the the Hale Ednders’s faults
    And even though
    I know this fire brings them pain
    Even so
    And just the same

    Fire Arteta
    Make it him leave us now
    Fire Arteta
    Oh, make it happen now
    Fire Arteta
    Fire Arteta make it happen now
    Fire Arteta
    Fire arteta

    Oh, we’re completely shite
    Playing in every ground
    But it just keeps on getting harder
    With tactics less profound
    Well, I know they can’t count the gooner’s tears
    because we are in so much pain
    And even though I know these tears come from no wins
    Even so
    And just the same

    Fire Arteta
    Make it him leave us now
    Fire Arteta
    Oh, make it happen now
    Fire Arteta
    Fire Arteta make it happen now
    Fire Arteta
    Fire Arteta

    Well, the grounds are full of our anger
    The games just come and go
    Just like the riches of football grandeur
    no, we have none
    When we go a goal down
    Arteta throws the players under the bus filled with no remorse
    With cold acid in his veins
    And fill our hope, we can get can draw
    So it’s time, to make a change

    Fire Arteta
    Make it happen now
    Fire Arteta
    Fire Arteta
    to get rid of the bin
    Fire Arteta of lord
    Make HIM go
    Oh,Fire Arteta
    Fire Arteta
    Fire Arteta
    Fire Arteta
    Oh, make Him Go
    Fire Arteta
    Fire him now oh lord
    Fire Arteta
    Oh, make him go
    Fire Arteta
    Fire Arteta
    Fire Arteta
    Fire Arteta
    Fire Arteta
    Fire Arteta & make HIM Go

  64. China1

    ‘Baby’, written and performed by Arteta with help from Justin Bieber

    I know you hate me, though I don’t care
    Just listen to me, it’s all hot air
    Our donut football, it stinks like farts
    It’s so dry at least I know that it’s not sharts

    Are we in top 4? Edu quit playin’
    Fit players back soon, xhaka’s passes sprayin’
    Said “Willian’s gone now but took all the pies”
    Paddy power bants ain’t for the first time

    And I was like Edu, edu, edu oh
    Like Vinai, Vinai, Vinai, no!
    Like Stanley, Stanley, Stanley, oh
    thought we’d at least make top five, five…

    We re-signed Tomigun, but got the wrong one
    Though it pleases me, that Saliba won’t come
    And I wanna play it cool, that Guen is gone too
    But Xhaka’s everything, trust this love ain’t a fling

    And I’m in stitches, looking at the table
    my detractors say, that I’m not able
    We’re goin’ down, down, down, down
    I just can’t wait to stink out the EFL

    And I’m like Auba, auba, auba, oh
    Score just one goal, one goal one goal, no!
    Like Pedro, Charlie, Englands’ oh!
    You actually thought we’d get top five, five…

  65. Tony

    I’ve made some mistakes in business and this one is from my music business days.

    I took on a guy who was popular here and had been on a couple of TV shows back in the 80s.

    He was a good singer with a really sweet alto voice that had unforced power through his alto range.

    Oddly enough, think Phil Collins vocal range and vocal strength. A dead cert for success, right?

    When a tour agent called me and suggested I work with him, I thought why not, great voice and he hadn’t fallen out of the ugly tree hitting many branches on the way down. The only downside was his Latin temperament, which was pretty front and center for 168cm and stick insect musculature.

    I put him to work with a couple of song writers where the artist was happy to have his career appearing to move again.

    While I was doing the rounds talking to people we got offered to go to Malta to do a charity gig in front of about 5000 people. The artist claimed to have Maltese blood in previous bios out there and Dom Mintoff, leader of the Maltese labour party, was behind the gig.

    It seemed the perfect place and time to showcase the artist, so I got a few people I know including the owner of an old but solid record company who were looking for new talent in the 30s age group.

    Arrival in Malta was very polished and the hotel was probably 4* so more than acceptable for a relatively unknown artist outside the UK. We had that night off after a press call and radio interviews that all went really well.

    The next day and sound check was good. I talked to the local engineer who had done many of these before, so I was happy.

    The gig went off without a hitch and the after party meet and greet also saw my artists charming the ladies and talking about the Knights Templer with the guys, something to do with my artist being part of a Mason like secret club.

    Back at the hotel the party continued with there being no shortage of friendly female natives.

    The next day was an afternoon poolside informal chats day with press and record company and a couple of A&R guys from Germany who had popped out of the woodwork.

    However, over breakfast our musical hero said in a brisk tone, Get me a fcuking contract today, and I don’t care how you do it. I thought one great gig and he’s a prima donna. So, I replied smiling I would do my best, but if he talked to me like that again his next hotel would be a hospital.

    I cooled down in my room and gave the situation a lot of thought. I decided that I’d read the 100+ page contract by the pool and if it was that bad, I’d get the artists on one of the biggest cruise liners crooning. Either way I was going to be shot of him.

    The contract was the usual with unspecified payback clauses that clawed back way over the odds for tours, studio time and a whole list of extras. The artist trying to impress female journalists, he’d strut over to me all Hollywood like from time to time and ask for my opinion on it.

    In sum, I explained all the pitfalls of the contract, such as 20% (normally 10%) deduction for any potential accountancy irregularities. (Fun this. huh?) I told him would go our separate ways when we got back, but I would take care of him getting work. So, I told him to take the contact to a music lawyer to get it tidied up. The lawyer will be happy to rep him on the deal and then find a manager.

    Or I told he him he had the cruise option, which I really thought he was going to take because it enabled him to superstar it to a captive audience. His fondness of women was extreme- probably like Sid -which only left 2 categories to measure by: Under 70 and breathing. I shit you not!

    I lost count of the times he told the local beauties he was a Knights Templer descendant, which was funny because the Pope had them all wiped out on Friday 13 in 1300 & something which I disclosed to the drop dead looking one he was tongue on the ground drooling for. Payback’s a bitch.

    Much to my displeasure because it meant me having to put up with him for a couple of days in the UK because he was due to lay down two tracks the next morning after we arrived back.

    The next day our flights were we evening time, I can’t remember the exact times. When we got to the airport there was a lot of confusion going owing to cancelled flights. When I went to get our seats I was told we might have to come back tomorrow. My artist went into full prima superstar mode and shouted, “Do you know who I am?”, which she replied “no sorry I don’t”. Unperturbed he shouted further “I’ve just played at a charity event for Maltese children” as if that was going to mean anything and it didn’t.

    Was it was for children or a guise for the governments coffers? Probably both, but we’d we’d been paid for our expenses and I just wanted to get home.

    The loudness coming from a taller crowd around my artist confused the guard toting a machine gun, in our general locality. The guard who was similar size to The Rock, but maybe 20% smaller, but a little taller just grabbed my artists by the throat said something to my artist who lost his mediterranean tan, in an instant probably because he couldn’t breathe for the moment. I made note to myself to fly under the radar as much as possible. With gun nudging my artist in the back, we went over to the main counter all the time me saying nothing and assessing outcomes and ways to get them because at that moment I had no idea.

    The guard holding my artist by the shirt collar talked to the manager at the desk and she looked over at me and said sternly, “Tomorrow!” I looked at the artist and said shut it before he got himself shot. I didn’t want the be the only manager in history to get his artist shot. Although, knowing what I know now the book and film rights would have been worth the mayhem and I just didn’t like him.

    Here’s the bit that glues this all together.

    Yesterday being Sunday before the poolside get together we we invited to go to Dom Mintoff’s summer palace for lunch. Now before you get grandiose visions of a palace by the sea with Moors architecture, it wasn’t. It was a big place with high walls and many gun toting guards and very old, perhaps 300 years or so.

    Invited with us were couple whose husband had a PhD in history and was working on a project for Dom M. I looked at my artist and said, “you raise your voice in here or insult anyone with your prima shit and I’ll make excuses and leave without you”. By now he knew I would.

    Lunch was cooked medieval style in huge pots hanging over a very large open fire with Dom Mintoff being the chef in a huge Downton Abbey type kitchen. The chat was interesting and I found Dom Mintoff to be a very cordial guy, but his eyes were steely and unerring in their gaze that told us all he was the alpha male and not to take advantage.

    When the topic of conversation went to the very new HDTV Dom was immeasurably excited telling us of all of its virtues and this is where I couldn’t shut up. I forgot ‘the shut up & don’t take advantage look’ I got from my artist and corrected Dom on several aspects explaining the tech to a hushed room and guards now on full alert eyes on Dom for orders.

    My artist gave me another look of you can fcuking talk about not insulting. I was trying to do my best cocker spaniel look with raised eyes to the sky.

    It was my time to turn white and sweat profusely. I was told by Dom I was a brave man to correct him in front of his guests. I apologized profusely stating it was not my finest moment while he went silent for what seemed hours, but was minutes and just like that he smiled and asked me again the parts I had corrected. I did so but never felt at ease after that.

    Just as we were leaving to go back to the hotel pool party, and as I shook Dom’s hand he gave me his personal card and said call him any time I’m in Malta if I have a problem.

    Back at the airport after the word ‘tomorrow’ stopped ringing in my ears I handed her Dom Mintoff’s personal card and it was her turn to go white as a sheet. The guard sensing something serious let go of the half choking he was doing with my artist’s shirt collar and my artist on his knees gasping for breath.

    She gave me the phone and card back and I rang the number only to be told he was in government sessions and couldn’t be disturbed. With all eyes and one gun pointing at me I decided shit or bust and asked very nicely explaining the very precarious predicament we were in, which was met no he’s in session.

    I don’t quite know what came over me I just said in my fiercest voice if you guard harms my artist I will tell Dom it was your fault. He told me to call him if I ever had a problem and this is a serious problem. The phone went quiet for a bout 5 minutes and then answered telling me he was in sessions. I thought what is it with these people and sessions when life and limb is at risk.

    With my ADHD (I had no idea then I had it) many outcomes were flashing around in my brain. I had clearly upset Dom Mintoff, that my call really hadn’t gone to plan. Trying with my most authoritative voice I explained that we really didn’t have the time to do the gig we did for him, as my artist was due in studios tomorrow morning, so we had to get back tonight. I apologized again and it all unnerveingly went quiet.

    Then Dom M spoke sternly, “give the phone to the guard”. I thought ok we’re fcuked Dom wanting to speak to the guard who had my artists by the shirt collar again was not the outcome I was hoping for. All of a sudden the guard saluting no one in particular, let go of my artist and started brushing him down apologizing and bowing and scraping.

    The counter manger when a shade of white I had not seen before and handed the phone back to me. Dom said to me I should not call him again and then we would get back that evening and the line went dead.

    We ended up on two different flights with my artist going first where he was seated in economy. He had noticed I was BA first class and wanted that ticket, but I said he would be alone if I went first and Dom Mintoff was far from happy.

    We got home safely and went our separate ways. I heard the artist signed the contract as was and was shelved after too much complaining, ranting and raving.

    For me, I spoke to a Dutch girl staying in the hotel who by coincidence was from the Dutch music & TV industry in Hilversum. I knew the manager of the band Golden Earring who had had Holland’s only world hit: Radar Love, who she also knew well. She told me of a producer with artists looking for a manager partner and that is where I ended up with my next management and production work and a quintuple heart bypass.

    Sorry it was a long story.

  66. Sid

    “”””””””””which I disclosed to the drop dead looking one he was tongue on the ground drooling for. “””””””””

    Snitches get stiches

  67. Tony

    Guns, not really, it wasn’t my scene. Around that time I was seriously into the super groups, such as Floyd, Led Zeppelin, Genesis.and also the blues, R&B (Rhythm & blues).

    Thinking about it now the effects of ADHD and whatever else affected me at that time that kind of music would be just loud painful noise to me. Music my mind relates to is about the rhythm and melody. I was never going to gell with those genres. Too angry man. 🙂

    However, in my early music days we we did have The Dead Kenedys play support in a 2000 capacity small club Stateside in but fcuk nowhere on the way to San Francisco. Might have been Portland.

    Sorry for the late reply was busy writing the Maltese story.

  68. Tony

    “Snitches get sticthes”

    Sure Sid and how would you have tackled things with your budgie smugglers XXXXXL doing your elephant walk?

    Sid genuine question.

    When you sit naked eating breakfast doesn’t that long stuff of yours try to stuff buns up your arse?

  69. Sid

    Is that the green eyed monster?
    There are workouts to enhance and enlarge, there a limit though, you are bantamweight while im superheavyweight

  70. Tony

    It’s ok, Sid, thanks. My arse don’t like buns. So not having the risk, like you do, doesn’t matter to me.

    I would have thought your shaman has told you it’s not that size of the wand, it’s the magic in the wand that counts. From the amount of times my wife has said that was magic I assume the magic must be replenish able as by well er magic, Sid.

    Never mind we normally say horses for courses but in your speak I’d imagine it to be elephants. 🙂

  71. Valentin

    If we are still discussing long flacid disappointment (sorry Sid), anybody has seen yet Dune by Villeneuve?

    Some of the professional reviews are dithyrambic, but the people I follow have been less than complimentary. It looks like he made the same thing than he did with Blade Runner 2049. It’s beautiful to look at, but it is slow, vapid, pretentious and ultimately very boring.

  72. Kroenkephobe

    Tony
    That story from Malta was a great read. I used to go there quite frequently from Paris at one stage for various bits of business. Strange place – Valletta kinda reminded me of a beiger, sunnier version of an Eastern European capital in the 70s although the older buildings around the port are pleasing. I could never put my finger on why but there was always a whiff of underhandedness and something sinister around the place. I gather Gozo is the venue for R and R but never got there. I used to enjoy reading the national papers – they were full of accusations and counter-accusations of corruption. Enjoyed your and China’s songs too – we’re all building up an impressive body of work. I think a Christmas album could be on the cards.

  73. Sid

    “””””””From the amount of times my wife has said that was magic”””””””

    People with ADHD tend to hyperfixate (completely immersed in something).

  74. China1

    The sun is reporting that the conte stories are true and we’ve already agreed terms with him- and that arteta would need to win ALL of the next 3 games to keep his job

    I’m still very doubtful but if it’s true it would be very exciting at least

  75. Dennis+the+Menace

    I can’t wait to see Conte holding the players, Edu and the owners 😀 to account. About time someone inserted some standards and a winning mentality into this club. It will be a real shock to the system but Conte’s process is more trustworthy than the thin gruel we’re being served up with at the moment.

  76. Tony

    China, Pedro may be on one of those cleanse the mind and soul trips as he would have heard the Conte rumours. You know the Uum YAAaaaa UMm YAaaa and so on.

    Happy you enjoyed the story

  77. CG

    The clamour for A. Conte aint going away until he has either got another job or he states it on the record that he does not want to manage The Arsenal.

    no more wannabees, no more ‘process/project’ boys, no more A&E.

    the supporters want a proven, charismatic, blazered and experienced manager.

    Not too much to ask, even for KSE!

  78. Gonsterous

    China

    That doesn’t make much sense.

    So arteta wins all three games, what do we tell conte then?
    Either sack or don’t sack, no point in all these, win the next game bs, either the manager has the backing or he hasn’t. Only at arsenal is everything done half arsed.