Alexis Sanchez: The Brilliance Without The Biting

The signing of Alexis Sanchez has left me elated, but it shouldn’t leave anyone surprised. Looking back at the Read more

2013/14: Arsenal's Season Blogged - Sagas, songs & a cup

As the enthralling World Cup comes to a close and eyes begin to turn towards next season, I thought Read more

Gunnerblog End of Season Awards 2014

It’s that time again. Ladies and gentlemen, please be seated. The results are in. PLAYER OF THE SEASON In a season Read more

A Party 9 years in the Making

A cup nine years in the winning. A party nine years in the making. A blog nine years in Read more

Thoughts from Wembley: Torturous afternoon’s Final flourish

I don’t know about you, but I remembered reaching an FA Cup final as a good deal more fun. Don’t Read more

Reyes lets slip over un-Real proposition…

Posted on by gilbertosilver Posted in 2004-2011 | 2 Guns

Read this telephone conversation.

Prank or no prank, it’s not good news.

I hope that our fans get behind Jose and give him the support he needs to get through what’s obviously a difficult time for him. Unlike Ash, this isn’t about money – it’s about a shy young boy whose finding it genuinely difficult to settle here. Let’s hope he manages, because despite his inconsistency, he has a lot of talent, and Arsene’s faith.

We play Palace on Monday, but Everton host Chelsea at lunchtime tomorrow. Let’s hope it’s 8 nil. (To Everton.)

Bon weekend.

Freddie’s on target again, and England are rubbish

Posted on by gilbertosilver Posted in 2004-2011 |  

International friendlies are disturbingly pointless.

England’s match with Holland last night served no purpose whatsoever other than to increase the profile of the latest “Racism is bad – Nike is good” campaign.

Sven appeared to lose his mind and bring on Andy Johnson as a right-winger. He also had the fairly crubbish idea of swapping the wingers every 3 minutes. And perhaps the one player you’d expect to provide a bright spark, Shaun Wright-Phillips, gave one of his worst performances of the season.

Frustrating stuff.

Ljungberg’s good run of form continues with another goal in the France vs. Sweden clash, and Paddy and Thierry also took part in the match, which finished in a 1-1 draw.

That’s it from me.

Now get.

THE END OF THE WORLD (or: “Some Speculation about Ashley Cole & Jose Reyes”. Nah, the first one is catchier.)

Posted on by gilbertosilver Posted in 2004-2011 | 6 Guns

Isn’t Sven a lovely chap: The most honourable man in football has defended Ashley Cole‘s right to talk to other clubs behind his teams back. Which clearly disregards this statement from a Premier League spokesman:

“A professional footballer under contract doesn’t have the right to speak to another club without the permission of his current employer.”

Yeah. Or, for example, a national manager under contract does not have the right to go and repeatedly bend over in front of the shiny-headed wanker that is Peter Kenyon.

Anyway, it seems that our side’s about to gain a lot more balance. People always complain that we’re much stronger on the left flank than the right-hand side. In order to combat this, Ashley Cole will be sold to Chelsea, and Jose Reyes will return to Spain with Real Madrid.

Thierry Henry will also be handed a free transfer, and Robert Pires will become an English correspondent for Spanish newspapery bastards Marca, where he will produce consistently anti-Arsenal editorials with titles such as “Mr. Wenger has the gay-love with with Pat Rice”, “Paddy: La Petite Chippolata”, and “Jermaine Pennant set to sign new deal with Gunners”.

I can’t wait.

Shades of 2003

Posted on by gilbertosilver Posted in 2004-2011 |  

I havenâ??t said much on this blog for a while. I was at the Man U game, and it was emotionally exhausting. I havenâ??t known what to say about it at all, and I still donâ??t.

So I think Iâ??ll leave it for a while.

Itâ??s something Iâ??ll write about at a later date.

I sound like Myles Palmer.

After we surrendered the title against Leeds in 2003, Arsenal thrashed Southampton 6-1.

This time round, we followed up the defeat to Manchester United with a performance against Aston Villa which, but for some weak finishing, couldâ??ve produced a similar scoreline.

Patrick Vieira was perhaps the star performer, but special mention must go to Jens Lehmann and the much-maligned Edu, who both returned to the side to bring both experience and two very accomplished performances.

Pascal Cygan and Philippe Senderos formed an unlikely yet impressive central defensive partnership, and Fredrik Ljungberg was his usual industrious self.

Too little too late, perhaps.

The big story flying around is still the Ashley Cole to Chelsea drama. New evidence appears to have verified the story, as the Premier League are about to launch an official investigation.

I donâ??t know much about the whole situation, but what I do know is that it doesnâ??t bode well for Ashleyâ??s future at Arsenal. We cannot compete financially with Chelsea, and if itâ??s money Ashâ??s after, then all bets are off.

International break this week. Expect all of our players who are involved in pointless friendlies to either a) get injured, or b) die.

Official Gunner-Blog Statement on Arsenal 2 – 4 Man Utd

Posted on by gilbertosilver Posted in 2004-2011 | 16 Guns

Cygan vs. Man U

Posted on by gilbertosilver Posted in 2004-2011 | 4 Guns

Arsenal face Manchester United today in what will surely be one of the most electric encounters of this up and down season.

Arsene reckons the loser is “out of the title race”. I’m inclined to agree – we’re barely in it as it is.

Almunia, Ashley Cole, Pires, Lauren, and Dennis Bergkamp will all come into the side that faced Wolves over the weekend. The team should end up looking something like this:

That means the unlucky men are the young spaniards, Jose Reyes and Cesc Fabregas. This is interesting when one considers the substantial role that these two played in undoing United in the Charity Shield. I’d certainly expect Jose to get 25 minutes or so to get some revenge on those bastard Nevilles.

Away from tonight’s game, Arsene has commented on Ashley Cole’s alleged meeting with Chelsea that “It looks to me like, yes, it has happened”.

Hm. You’d better have a good game tonight, Ashley.

C’mon you reds.

Cole stokes the fire of discontent…

Posted on by gilbertosilver Posted in 2004-2011 | 1

Contract negotiations have gone less than smoothly this season.

Sol Campbell stalled on his extension, Lauren was initially offered just one year, Jermaine Pennant seems to be at the point of being released, and we all know plenty about the Edu shenanigans.

However, Ashley Cole’s actions (if the News of the World is to be believed) are an undoubted shock to the system.

This is Ashley Cole. Our Ashley. A product of our youth system – a local boy at that. And this isn’t Real Madrid. This isn’t some bunch of “Galacticos” in a far-off land. This is Chelsea: the Russian-owned blue bastards from down the road.

It’s only when one considers a possibility like this, that one understands just how a Tottenham fan felt when Sol Campbell sold them out.

“It wouldn’t matter”, some have suggested, “We have Gael Clichy”. Don’t get me wrong, Gael Clichy is a great player. But Ashley Cole is the best left-back in the world. And his departure would have massive symbolic significance. This is a possible future captain of our club that we’re talking about here.

It feels very wrong that I’m saying “Hopefully he’s just trying to get the most money he can out of Arsenal by showing he’s wanted elsewhere”. It shouldn’t be like that. But it is.



Posted on by gilbertosilver Posted in 2004-2011 | 2 Guns

…to produce one of the most bizarre football-related articles that I have ever seen.

Look at them. Trussalicious.

Edu appears to be on the brink of his move to Valencia. It doesn’t look like there’ll be much time to try and get in a replacement, so it’s a bit of a blow. Flamini and Fabregas are more than good enough, though.

Ahead of the FA Cup Tie with Wolves, Arsene Wenger has been talking about investing in the club through youth. As he rightly says, “I feel there is a lot more to come from this team and it can come quickly,” said Wenger. “At the moment, because we have young players, we donâ??t know how good we are. Sometimes teams can suffer from that”.

I’d be surprised if we didn’t progress to the 5th round. After the impressive win against Newcastle, we’re on decent form. In fact, one might say we’re “smoking”.

Except we’re not.

I forgot about this blog.

Posted on by gilbertosilver Posted in 2004-2011 | 57 Guns

Honestly. I just completely forgot that it even existed. Odd, that.

In the meantime, we thrashed Newcastle 1-0, Jermaine Pennant set about destroying what was left of his Arsenal career, and we began looking for a replacement for Edu.

I’d like to thank the BBC for making all those links available so very quickly.

Newcastle was a great performance. Were it not for some quite brilliant saves from Shay Given, it could’ve been 4 or 5 nil. The team featured several returning players, and they all contributed superbly: Lauren provided class and calm at the back, Flamini a fire in midfield, Reyes ran them ragged, and Dennis Bergkamp showed a touch of real class with the winning goal. The only negative issues to arise from the game are the fact Freddie Ljungberg missed out with a hamstring problem, and that Kolo Toure could pick up a three match suspension for hammering Shearer with his elbow. Unlike him.

Anyhow, that should result in Cygan vs. Rooney & co.


On the brighter side of things, Jermaine Pennant might finally sod off. He’s wasted the massive opportunity he’s been given, and as long as Birmingham get their act together, he could leave this week.

As he heads out, rumours are sweeping message boards everywhere (well, just AWIMB really), that Fabio Rochemback could be replacing him in our midfield.

He’s able to play on the right-hand side, but is primarily a central midfielder, with a crunching tackle and a thunderous shot.

Probably won’t happen though, seeing as he’s cup-tied.


Wenger hopes to celebrate with Claret next season…

Posted on by gilbertosilver Posted in 2004-2011 | 67 Guns

Because it’s a drink, innit. “Claret”. But it’s also the colour of our brand new, entirely befuddling kit.

Hardly chuffed to be wearing it, are they.

I don’t know what I think yet, laregly because I’m yet to see it in full. Paddy and Thierry do look a little bit like they’re about to serve you in a down-market Burger Bar, but then, that’s tradition for you. As Tel says, “This is the proper colour, right from the start of our time here, I’m sure people will appreciate that and will like it.” Bless.

Brilliant news with the confirmed quartet of defensive contract extensions. The speculation surrounding a new deal for Lauren turned out to be true, and Sol Campbell’s signature is an obviously significant one. The two younger lads should also provide back-up and Carling Cup-based fun for the next couple of years.

Less good news on the Edu situation, with Arsene revealing, “I thought we made some progress but now my belief is more that he will go to a different club and I would bet on it being Valencia”. When asked if Edu’s departure could prompt a big signing, Arsene responded, “If you say a big signing means big money then no, if you say a big signing is a good player then yes. But Edu has not gone yet. You have to prepare a solution but I have not entered into any negotiations because there is always hope the Edu situation can be sorted out. He should stop being such a fassy boy, and sign the bloody contract”. (Disclaimer: That last sentence may be fictional.)

The problem would appear to be finding someone to take Edu now. Why would Valencia pay £2m for him tomorrow when they could get him on a free in the summer? And why would he move now, significantly reducing the pot from which his new salary will be drawn?

If, however, he does go, I’d like to see us move for Mark van Bommel (if only just to swipe him from underneath Tottenham‘s noses). His contract’s up in the summer, so we’re not looking at a huge outlay for a player we once bid around £10m for. Admittedly, he’s had a bit of “beef” with us in the past, but that’s his game. He’s a hyper-aggressive man-eating central midfielder with a knack of scoring goals from distance. I think that’s the sort of player who’d help us out right now.

Tomorrow, we face Newcastle, and the team should look a bit like this:

The side likely to face Newcastle

They’ll probably have bodies though, and not just be floating kits.

There could be a couple of changes from that XI. Lauren might return, and Mathieu Flamini is available again in midfield, though I’d expect Bergkamp to come back in after a spell on the sidelines.

This is way, way too long.

R.I.P. the footballing career of Emmanuel Petit, who (as Arsene vouches) used to be quite good.

Bon weekend.