Olivier Giroud Is A Heavy Horse

In football it’s all about horses for courses.

At Arsenal we have been privileged to have some very fine-fettled four-legged friends over the years.

Elegant racing thoroughbreds (Thierry Henry, Dennis Bergkamp); tough old warhorses (Tony Adams, Frank McLintock); exuberant, untameable broncos (Ian Wright, Charlie Nicholas); even sprightly little Shetland Ponies (Santi Cazorla springs to mind).

We’ve had our show ponies too, prancing around with bows in their hair and not doing much else (yes David Bentley and Samir Nasri, I’m thinking of you).

Even a carthorse or two (you can decide).

But watching Olivier Giroud’s performance against a good Southampton side on Saturday put me in mind of the Jethro Tull song “Heavy Horses”.

The song (off the album of the same name) is an ode to the mighty shire horses, those statuesque, powerful beasts with thick manes and hair-covered hooves that once pulled the ploughs that turned the soil to grow the crops that fed the nation.

Olivier Giroud Arsenal Artur Boruc Southampton

Despite their massive size and strength they are gentle, uncomplaining beasts, even if there’s not much serious work for them to do in these days of the combustion engine.

Even the names of their breeds are redolent of nostalgia and earthy warmth: Clydesdale, Suffolk, Percheron, Ardennes.

Ollie is a real shire horse (and as those last two breed names indicate, these great horses originated in France as well as England. They were the only horses strong enough to carry a fully armoured Medieval knight into battle). He puts in tireless shift after tireless shift; never complaining; always happy to take the knocks if it benefits the team. Always helping out in defence when our opponents have a set piece.

The way we play, his role is incredibly important. If he can’t compete for possession with the opposition centre backs, hold the ball up and play team mates in, it’s much harder to get attack-minded players like Ozil and Cazorla into the most dangerous positions.

Nor does Ollie get much protection from referees. He is often penalized for jumping fairly for the ball and seldom gets awarded the clear fouls against him.

But he fights and fights. His strength is phenomenal and he seems able to bully even the biggest and hardest defenders in the league, retaining possession against all the odds.

As the lone man up front, he also has to run more than most – either trying to find space when we’re in possession or closing down the opposition defenders when they have the ball, forcing them to make hurried clearances and, hopefully, lose the ball.

It was that determination which led to our first goal against Saints. If you re-watch it, you’ll see that Ollie was a long way – at least 20 yards – from Boruc when the Southampton goalie received a back pass in his penalty area.  The chances of anything coming of the situation were tiny, but Ollie still made the effort and we all know what (hilariously) happened next.

I know the jury was out on Giroud at the end of last season. He had endeared himself to the supporters by dint of his sheer work rate and attitude, but some fans undoubtedly felt we needed someone ‘better’ for the current season. However, this year Ollie has moved up a whole level.

Aside from doing all the centre forwardy stuff like beating up defenders and competing for high balls, his touch and link-up play have been first rate and his finishing is good too. With 7 goals in the EPL after 12 games, he is on course for more than 20 league goals for the season. And he also has 3 in the Champions League.

Maybe we do need an additional striker in January, but for me it’s not automatic that it should be a striker to replace Olivier Giroud. Certainly it would be preferable to have someone other than the perennially frustrated and frustrating Bendtner as back-up if our Shire Horse gets injured.

But I am not averse to us sticking with Ollie as the front man, sharing the goals with Theo, Aaron, Santi, Podolski and Ozil. I feel that in time he will come to be really appreciated as one of the very best strikers in the EPL.

He may be more of an Alan Smith than an Ian Wright (Smudger was less spectacular and less individualistic than Wrighty) but it’s worth remembering that we won the league twice with Smith leading the line and did not win it at all with Wright as our front man (although he played a part in Arsene’s first Double triumph in 1998).

What do you think?

To finish I’ll leave you with a few of the lines from the Heavy Horses song that put me in mind of Giroud:

Iron-clad feather-feet pounding the dust

An October’s day, towards evening

Sweat embossed veins standing proud to the plough

Salt on a deep chest seasoning

Last of the line at an honest day’s toil

Turning the deep sod under…

Standing like tanks on the brow of the hill

Up into the cold wind facing

In stiff battle harness, chained to the world

Against the low sun racing

Bring me a wheel of oaken wood

A rein of polished leather

A Heavy Horse and a tumbling sky

Brewing heavy weather.

RockyLives

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116 Responses to Olivier Giroud Is A Heavy Horse

  1. chas says:

    Cheers, Rocky.
    Apparently he’s hung like a horse, too.

    Jack has commented on Giroud’s importance to the team.
    http://www.espn.co.uk/football/sport/story/260631.html

    He is becoming indispensable.
    Perhaps how we fare if he becomes unavailable will determine how successful the season will be.

  2. Räsp says:

    Spot on Rocky, Ollie is an essential ingredient to the way we play. I can’t praise him enough for all the attributes you highlight.

    Some people say we play a 4:3:3, but I’d call it a 4:2:3:1 or 4:5:1 with OG as the spearhead and that system only works if the ’1′ works his socks off and is effective at holding the ball up and bringing his team mates into play – and for that I give him 10/10

  3. Räsp says:

    Just to add further praise, Giroud also wins a significant number of headers when we’re defending corners and then has to sprint the full length of the pitch to lead the attack.

  4. VCC says:

    Fine analysis of a much improved player Rocky.

    I hold my hands up to being one of the doubters when he first arrived.

    He has made me eat several of my hats, so much so, I have none left.

    A new one is top of my Christmas list, much needed, as my balding head sure as hell needs keeping warm on these cold sharp winter days.

    I sit more comfortable in my seat nowadays, watching the mighty Arsenal, knowing he will take the pressure off us if we are under the cosh.

  5. Big Raddy says:

    Love the Tull quote at the end of the post. Anderson is a wordsmith as well as a superb musician.

    As to OG. What more can be said but we do need a poacher alongside the farm horse.

  6. Räsp says:

    Olivier Giroud £12.8m
    Soldado £26m

  7. Norfolk Gooner says:

    ‘morning AAers,

    Excellent post Rocky, as you rightly point out today’s placid Heavy Horse is descended from the destriers of the middle ages, huge stallions bred to battle. Not only did they carry the heavily armoured knights into the fray but were trained to fight with and kill the enemies horses as well. Happy to kick and trample the opposing men-at-arms to death, they led the line.

    That’s Olivier Giroud for me. Leading the line, fighting and scrapping for the ball, trampling over the defenders and attaining the ultimate prize….a goal.

  8. How can I post a picture ? Please.

  9. Morning all, well put Mr Rock, I’ve appreciated Ollie’s work rate from the first time I saw him live last season.

    He gives us so much aerially that we haven’t had for a while in that our set piece play is so much better when he plays. His work rate is above average and at present he is the sword arm of our attack.

    Ollie will have dips in form but his attitude is tip top and he will need to be used carefully while we have no one else to share the striking role with him.

    Just wish he didn’t have such a silly haircut though.

  10. Norfolk Gooner says:

    Ben, put it in an envelope, write the address on the envelope, put a stamp on the top right corner of the envelope and pop the whole thing in a post box, usualy a round red thing on a street corner.

    Kids today eh! you have to spoon feed them all the time. :D

  11. Oh ! So that’s how you do it in England ?! Fare enough, I guess I shouldn’t hand the stick… Though I thought it was a friendly place. Shouldn’t you be a little nicer to French guys, especially on this particular post ?

  12. Räsp says:

    Don’t take offence Benjamin, Norfolk was only having a friendly joke – I bet he doesn’t know how to put up a picture up either :)

    I put a picture in photobucket and then paste the link to get it in comments but I believe others have a more direct method. Just try right clicking the picture and see if ‘direct link’ comes up as an option – if it does, try copying and pasting it in the comments box.

    By the way, thanks for letting us have your fellow Frenchman, Ollie – he’s pretty good!

  13. 26may1989 says:

    Love that post, Rockster. Another equine beast your Jethro Tull reference brought to mind is Boxer form Orwell’s Animal Farm. Boxer is the strongest animal on the farm, “an enormous beast, nearly eighteen hands high, and as strong as any two ordinary horses put together [...] he was not of first-rate intelligence, but he was universally respected for his steadiness of character and tremendous powers of work”. I wouldn’t say Ollie is “not of first-rate intelligence”, quite the opposite, but the remainder of the description is good for him too.

    As the January transfer window draws closer, the quesion of that missing piece of the jigsaw comes into sharper focus. But with Wenger’s alchemy having reached a point where a perfect balance between the different elements has been found, the idea of doing what many of us have aching for, and signing a sooper-dooper striker/attacker, actually brings with it the risk of spoiling what we have. Whatever happens in January, any signing we make needs to be aimed at complementing the vintage blend we have, and not spoiling it.

    Catch you lot later.

  14. Norfolk Gooner says:

    Ben,

    Sorry if I’ve offended you, being French you probably didn’t recognise a weak English attempt at humour.

    We, on this site, certainly appreciate the good things that have come out of France in recent years, Henry, Vierra, Petit, Pires etc, but you can keep Na€ri thank you very much.

  15. Norfolk Gooner says:

    Rasp, you’re absolutely right about me not knowing how to post a picture, It wasn’t too long ago that I found I could send an e mail without sticking a stamp on my computer screen. :D

  16. I wouldn’t have him in any other team ! Thank you for giving the world the Arsenal. Gunner for life !
    No offense taken, I actually thought it was pretty funny. It’s just that from a very young age, in France, we’re tought to answer to sarcasm with even more sarcasm ! Second, third degree and all the rest.
    I’m actually using an iPad and I’m not sure all the possibilities given by a regular computer are available to me… If anyone has an idea.

  17. RA says:

    Another classy Post, Rocker.

    I cannot disagree with anything what you wrote!! :-)

    In case you entice any innocent to go and cuddle a handsome Shire horse, can I just say, as someone who comes from a slightly farming background, that depending on whether or not there are mares around, the nice gentle Shire stallion can be a little bit dangerous. Well, very dangerous actually! :-)

    He can deliver a pretty deadly kick with those outsize feet, just like our man Giro, and with those large shiny teeth can take more out of a careless person than they might be prepared to give, although when dressed in his finery, he often sports a fine cropped head, just like Giro.

    Having seen Giro’s Mrs, he does have one advantage over the Shire, fortunately for him, in that because of their hormone induced tempers around the ladies, the stallions tend to have their ‘bits’ snipped, which makes them gentle (well it would, wouldn’t it) but unable to do what-a comes natural like. :-)

    I suspect Giro would rather keep his temper, his bits and the ladies – who would not, given the choice?

  18. chas says:

    Benjamin,
    I think only those with insider wordpress authorisation can post a picture directly.
    The way I get round it is posting the picture to twitter and then pasting the link to the tweet on here. Not a very elegant work around but effective.

  19. Räsp says:

    Hmmm, no only the link comes up :(

  20. chas says:

    Rasp,
    I think you have to use the ‘img src’ html command. That’s what GIE does, but it doesn’t work for us mere mortals. :)

  21. chas says:

    One Frenchman to another.

  22. chas says:
  23. Big Raddy says:

    Brilliant chas 12.31

  24. The funniest ! Chas 12:31.
    Seems very complicated to put a picture here… I just thought it would be the perfect occasion to put Ollie’s calendar picture ! Anyone ? Chas ? Räsp ? Big Raddy ?

  25. kelsey says:

    As per usual Rocky a very well written post.

    I don’#t think one can compare Giroud to any other CF we have had in the Wenger years .
    His work rate is fantastic and more often than not he is helping out the defense for only the next minute being part of mounting an attack.
    I wouldn’t call him a number 9 or 10 but my main concern is that he needs to be rested otherwise his stamina will be sapped, but who do you replace him with ?
    Walcott for me has to play on the flanks and cut in, he doesn’t have the physical build to take the bruising Giroud gets, so what will Wenger do.
    I honestly don’t think it matters an iota how many goals he scores if he can assist to any of 6 players who readily make themselves available to score.
    AW won’t change his system and we might see Gnabry feature more.
    By the way Marseilled are playing a weakened team tomorrow as they know they can’t qualify.

  26. I like it that Arsenal has taken the supporters advice into account about the Arsenalisation of the Emirates !.

    Very classy….picture of the day ?….a poll vote would be nice !.

    http://p.twimg.com/A75sypRCYAAsEbk.jpg:large

  27. chas says:

    Benjamin,
    I’m not sure about that photo of him with his bootocks out.
    How about this?

  28. chas says:

    kelsey,
    Where did you hear about the weakened team for Marseille?
    I’m not sure Napoli and Dortmund would be best pleased.

  29. kelsey says:

    On the Sunday Supplement,Chas

  30. chas says:

    Presumably they were just guessing?

  31. kelsey says:

    They also said ,which makes sense that Jack is being played more on the right flank at the moment to avoid crunching takles when he is in the middle of the park, though accept that his not his best position.

  32. kelsey says:

    Maybe Chas

    It was the guy from The Times and seemed pretty sure, but anyway we will win

  33. chas says:

    This is the team when everyone is fit. :)
    Notice, Giroud.

  34. chas says:

    Ah, cheers, kelsey.

    I just had a look and if they beat us and Dortmund by more than 3 goals in their last game, they could still end up playing on Spursday nights. :)

  35. chas says:

    From today’s training…..

  36. chas says:

    Last one for a bit, I promise.

  37. The look on his face is priceless ! lol

    Guys ! Have you seen Soldado’s heat map for this week end ? Hilarious and real !

  38. JanMan says:

    Great post Rocky. It is good to see Giroud getting the high quality appreciation that he fully deserves. How many forwards in the PL would even have thought to pressurize the keeper from that far out? I know there is a lot of talk about us needing another striker in January and I believe we do but not to replace Giroud but more to complement his style of play.

  39. Bayonne Jean says:

    If there’s anyone in the premiership that’s currently contributing and performing in the way Ollie G is for the Gunners, it would have to be Negredo. Very similar in strength profiles; OG works much harder (he doesn’t have an Aguero to partner with) and is better in the air, while Negredo may barely shade OG in pace and is for now a better finisher.

    Looking forward to the City match; in no way will AW manage that like Assinine Village Buffoon did.

  40. Mike says:

    Agree 100%.Giroud looked good last year, this year he looks great. Same with Ramsey. If we can get Ozil clicking with Santi, I truly think we could be the best team in England this season. I read an article by John Cross commenting on our overall midfield strength. Mentions Santi, Ramsey, Ozil, Jack, Arteta Flamini,then Theo and Poldi,even Gnabry and Diaby. Completely leaves out Rosicky !!! That is why I think we’re in great shape. We’ve got a lot of depth that people don’t even think about. Podolski can do a good job up front when he’s fit. It will be a bit different to Ollie, but he’ll score goals.

  41. BTW, who’s going to the game tomorrow(I’m going) and will be in the Tavern an hour before kick off ?

  42. RockyLives says:

    Good day all.

    Ridiculous video, great song:

  43. RockyLives says:

    Thanks for some great comments. It seems we are all in agreement about our French warhorse (thank you NG) – that makes a change :)

    26
    Boxer from Animal Farm is another good analogy. Let’s hope Ollie doesn’t meet the same fate.

    BR
    Apparently Ian Anderson doesn’t like poetry – which seems a bit odd because I think – in his lyrics – he’s written some of the best pastoral verse created in Britain in the last 40 years.

    VCC
    Nice to see you over here. Sometimes it’s a pleasure to be proved wrong, even if it leaves you a bit chilly on top :)

    Redders
    Your farm background? Intriguing – you are a man of many layers. Do tell more…

  44. LB says:

    Nothing like nicely roasted spuds on a Sunday.

    Thanks for the post Rocky.

  45. Räsp says:

    Hi chary, we’re going to the game – catch up with you in the Tavern

  46. RockyLives says:

    LB
    I suppose a draw would have been a better result for us, but you’d have to have a heart of stone not to weep with laughter at the travails of the tiny Totts :D

  47. Nice post Rocky.
    Räsp at 10:47 am
    Olivier Giroud £12.8m
    Soldado £26m
    While your point about the cost of the players is valid, I think that any comparison between the two player’s performance should be done based on the corresponding part of their first season in the Premier League. That way you have a common base against which to judge their achievements. On that basis, I would point out that it is noticeable that Giroud’s work rate both in ground covered and work in defence all outstrip Soldado.

    The other point I would like to make is that Giroud was coming into a side which was built around a single striker up front (Brave Sir Robin). Soldado on the other hand is coming into a side which was built around a goal scoring monkey’s head who operated in a withdrawn role. Until Tottenham figure out how to feed Soldado, he is always going to look like poor value for money.

    I often say to my friends, ad nasueam, you cannot judge a player until they have completed 14 months in the PL. At that point they have had a chance to acclimatise to the team, the pace of the league, the intensity, the climate, and the media attention, or they have failed to cope with it.

  48. Räsp says:

    Hi N5A, actually I didn’t make a point, I just posted their relative cost – its up to others to draw their own conclusions.

  49. Rasp,, fair enough. Let me amend my comment to “if we are bring up the cost or value of the players, I think that….”

  50. Rasp,
    Should read
    “Fair enough. Let me amend my comment to “If we are to bring up the cost or value of these two players, I think that….”

  51. Räsp says:

    Thanks N5A, I think the larger picture is not that one player is struggling to gel into an established team but that a disparate selection of £100m worth of players do not a team make :lol:

  52. See you there Raspers.

  53. RockyLives says:

    Rasp and N5A
    One thing not often taken into account when people talk about how the Spuds recouped most of their 100m outlay with the Bale sale is that Bale was on (let’s say) 100k a week at the Spuds. How much are their seven new signings being paid between them? It must be at least 350k a week – every single week – so the Spuds are a quarter or a million quid worse off every week this season.

    Someone said yesterday that they could be the first club to run into FFP problems if they don’t make the Champions League places…

  54. evonne says:

    do you ever run out of ideas Rocky? bloody good post again, thank you!
    I am not sure if Oliie sees himself as a workhorse, I doubt it somehow. He is incredibly handsome (and a bit vein) and he knows it. On top of that he is strong, talented and motivated, cannot ask more from a footballer.

    Shit, I just thought of something horrible – he would fit RM’s criteria perfectly. Oh no, they are bound to start snooping again

  55. evonne says:

    Rocky – that’d be GiE to be sure, to be sure

  56. dandan says:

    Fine post Rocky I wish I had your skills.
    I had intended putting the following up as a lead post for the future but it seems I am no longer able to do that.

    A touch of class, perhaps.

    Blogging it would seem is an addictive kind of activity, and although I have deliberately taken a break from participation as a catalogue of family related matters have claimed my attention over recent months. I have however been able most times, to keep an Eye on all things AA. Apart from the last 3 weeks whilst out of the country.
    The impulse to fire back at post and posters whose opinions run not necessarily in accordance with my own has caused me to reflect on what the blog is actually about.
    Is it purely a gathering place for likeminded Arsenal supporters to wave their verbal scarves on a daily basis or a forum where the general state of football the football industry and their relevance to the game, the club and us fans is up for discussion?
    Of course I am aware that a blog called AA is certain to be biased in favour of the club whose name it bears and my positive support for the club is well known by the many fellow posters I have shared computer time with over the years. I do worry however that our bias is in some cases demeaning to the club we claim is “the Class Club” that has led the way in furthering both the quality of the football played and the integrity of our financial standing. The very fact that one only has to appraise the input of our posters this so far “successful” year, then compare it to the enormous amount of claptrap that poster’s besmirched the blog with last year is to see that reason is not a prerequisite to a fan obsessed with bias.
    What is my point you may ask? Only this can we not as a body of supporters wear our so called class with pride, remember that success goes in cycles and we may well be the next team to have 6 stuffed by us by City or their ilk and try not to gloat at fans who have never had the opportunity to enjoy our successes.
    We aint won nothing yet and to set ourselves up for a fall this early in the season seems in my eyes rather short-sighted when a graceful acceptance of our good fortune as the season progresses would only underline why we are the club we are.

  57. 26may1989 says:

    As is true pretty much every season, Spud fans (and many pundits) in the summer overstate the likely impact of the signings made by Levy plus whichever manager is in post. And so it has been again this year, numerous new singings have been overrated, at least for short term impact.

    Quite rightly, AVB is now trying to stop any talk of them going for the title – getting into the top four will be more than big enough a challenge for them.

    But that said, Spurs won’t play much worse than they did yesterday. Starting with Dembélé and playing Vertonghen at CB rather than LB would make a difference. But the trouble (for them) is that they look like a collection of useful but not brilliant players now: Holtby, Kaboul, Eriksen, Sandro, Lennon, Capoue, the list goes on. All reasonable, and on their day capable of doing well, but with Modric, Bale and van der Vaart having slung their hooks, there’s a real lack of brilliance in there. And yesterday, they lacked any sense of cohesion as well, there was just nothing to them, and truth be told, City won 6-0 despite looking ropy in defence and not that great in midfield.

  58. RA says:

    Rocket,

    Without having the figures to hand, I would imagine that Spurs would be the first club to fall foul of the FFP rules well after Citeh, Chelsea and ‘Pool.

    That comment comes with the caveat that they might all have a clear out of players during the qualifying period, (the Spuds already have sold £85m Bale, of course, so I cannot see them having a problem.)

    In addition, City’s ridiculous deal with Etihad, if disallowed, might really put them in the sugar, as I cannot believe their ‘allowable’ training system and community expenditure will compensate.

    We need GIE to elaborate. :-)

    — I spent many of my school holidays ‘working’ on my Uncle’s dairy farm – milk cows, pigs for commercial purposes, and chickens, ducks and a couple of horses for personal use.

    If you want your cows udders washed and your pigs sloshed out, or your horses ridden, I am your man.

    [ I am still being lured into answering someone who does not expect a response - odd for someone who hopes for a response and is frequently disappointed.] Oh well, it’s probably down to my lack of confidence and self sufficiency, so I have been told.
    But fear not, I will survive. :-)

  59. chas says:

    dandan,

    I know I’m one of the worst for having no class.
    I do realise that good fortune ebbs and flows like the tide but surely we’re allowed to enjoy it when the spuds get thrashed?
    I won’t think we are going to win something until the last point is won.

  60. Shard says:

    Rocky

    As ever, you exhibit some wonderful writing. I’ve been staying away from the blogs generally as my exams are coming up soon and I’m close to panic sometimes about how under-prepared I am. Glad I came in today. Just read through all the comments too. Wasn’t prepared to see the shire horse moon me.

    As for the spuds, and the conundrum of ‘to laugh or not to laugh’, I say do whatever comes naturally. I tend to not care about how they do because I don’t hate them, or even dislike them the way I do ManU and Chelsea. They are annoying at times, especially when they get all uppity, and I did enjoy seeing them suffer at the Etihad, but it’s nothing to do with me. There aren’t any Spurs fans here, as you can imagine. Still, if people want to enjoy the moment and rub it in, I get that too.

    As for Spurs not being FFP compliant. I don’t know about that. They lost Bale, but also other fairly high earners such as Gallas, Dempsey, Parker, Hundredstone, and….Bentley.. among others such as Caulker, Livermore and Bostock. So..The fact that they were so…wasteful..in previous years probably will be enough to keep them at a similar wage level. But they are seemingly being wasteful again. That sort of cycle can’t go on too long. The extra TV money will help though.

  61. Redders.

    I bet it was embarrassing taking the animals to the vet for treatment of STD`s !. The vet may have been suspicious, but I believe you !. hahaha

  62. RockyLives says:

    Redders
    Now I don’t know whether to respond to you or not :)

  63. 26may1989 says:

    Re FFP, always worth remembering that Spurs received about £20m in the summer for Parker, Caulker, Huddlestone and Dempsey, so I think they were still net recipients, even with £100m of spending. And in recent seasons, they’ve made a trading profit as often as we have.

    Rocky’s right to point out that their wage bill may also be higher now, but I’d be surprised if Spurs did fall foul of FFP.

    Anyway, they have to qualify for European football before that even becomes an issue…. :)

    As for City, it’s not just the false deals with Etihad, they have multiple false deals with various emanaitions of their owner, the Abu Dhabi state: Etisalat, the Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority and aabar Investments. None of those deals should count as legitimate, arm’s-length transactions, they’re just mechanisms for shovelling additional cash into the club so that Aguero et al can wear sky blue.

  64. RockyLives says:

    dandan
    Thanks for a thoughtful comment.

    I like the banter with opposing fans – it’s all part of the fun and much of it is very funny.

    Terrace humour – often now transferred onto the internet – is part and parcel of the footy experience.

    When we’re on the receiving end… well, so be it. Don’t give it if you can’t take it.

    I’m not sure it’s the same as being over confident about our own fortunes: like Chas, I don’t count any chickens until they hatch and I certainly don’t support Arsenal just to win things.

    Triumph and disaster equal impostors and all that…

    But the noisy neighbours can’t stop themselves from telling us – every single year – that they are about to eclipse us. So it’s quite funny when they don’t.

  65. Big Raddy says:

    DanDan. A timely reminder that we support a “classy” club. Unfortunately, despite supporting the club throughout my life I cannot in all honesty say that I can live up to the club’s standards.

    I have to admit to taking enormous pleasure from the comedy show at THFC. Always have, always will.

    But I salute those who can rise above such puerile pleasures :-)

  66. RA says:

    26,

    Call me naïve, but I believed that FFP was a concerted attempt by Platini, in particular, to stop the ‘elite oiler’ clubs from forever excluding clubs less well funded, (from external sources) of ever winning a trophy.

    The political machinations of the UEFA and FIFA authorities, in recent years, make me now less than confident that will happen.

    Fudge. That’s the word that springs all too readily to mind. I have no evidence to that effect, of course, but the omens do not look promising.

    Follow the money. Where there is money, there is influence, where there is influence ………….

  67. Feet firmly on the ground here and although I`m probably the classiest Monster on here, I like nothing better than pissing on the Spuds !. The Amber Nectar…..you deserve it Spudos !.

    Told you I was class !. hahaha

  68. evonne says:

    “I have to admit to taking enormous pleasure from the comedy show at THFC. Always have, always will.” – you are evil Raddy :)

    Dandan – I am with you on that one. As I have stated before I feel sorry for the fans, they were so optimistic this summer thinking that they can really crack it. It was a bad, bad move to sell the simian, he was marvellous for them last season and would pull them this season too.

    Having said that, they did buy some good players, they already havw a few decent footballers, AVB is not stupid and I have no doubt that they will pull themselves together in the second part of the season.
    Sadly, this applies to manure too.

  69. RA says:

    Cockie,

    You are a very naughty monster — especially when let loose with Fozzie!!

  70. 26may1989 says:

    RA, difficult to tell, but I think you are at least partly right. But there have been enough noises from UEFA to think that it is possible that a hard line might still be taken on crucial items like the false commercial deals – e.g., the general secretary at UEFA said a few months ago that their interim review had identified clubs that were in breach and said they would be dealt with when the time comes. I’m sure UEFA won’t be excluding the likes of City stratight away but there will likely be the beginning of the relevant processes, taht would lead to exclusion if City don’t fall into line.

    At least as important as the actual enforcement action is the impact on clubs’ behaviour, and there has been a reduction in clubs’ debt already.

    Anyway, it’s all speculation, we’ll see whetehr UEFA have the guts to follow through on the rules Platini introduced.

  71. JanMan says:

    Dan Dan. Great comment that keeps everything in prospective! However, I must confess that I take great pleasure in mocking the Spuds. Lets’ be honest any team with a chicken on a basketball as a club badge are setting themselves up for abuse right from the start. Football will naturally encourage banter between fans the key is not to go over the top and make it personal or racial.

  72. ” Feel sorry for the fans ! “…….no wonder you`re cuckoo !. hahaha

    There on the table of life was the choice…..a bottle of bubbly to celebrate success or a shit sandwich !. The deranged , deluded Spuds chose a shit sandwich !. Do I feel sorry for them as I sip my bubbly ?….Wtf do you think !. hahaha

  73. arnie says:

    Rocky: Fantastic, fantastic, fantastic!!!! Just three words to describe your post. Very uplifting, and an immense celebration of an Arsenal hero. OK, he may not win the Ballon d’Or, perhaps ever, but every great team needs it grafting, hard-working, toilers. And for this current Arsenal team, it is Giroud, together with the likes of BFG and Sagna. Be it for the likes of the Turkish-German wizard and the Welsh Messi to show their skills, but if it were not for the grafters, we would be nowhere!

    The first goal against Saints has been mentioned several times. But I would point to three other highlights, at least for me. One from Saturday, and two from earlier. First, from Saturday. Midway through the second half, with Arsenal on the attack off a set-piece, still ahead 1-0, Saints rebounded on the counter down the right. Gibbs and Kos were slow on the way back. Along comes Ollie to the rescue, perfectly intercepting a cross from the right, at the expense of a corner. A big THANK YOU from Szcz. What energy, what commitment!

    Second, Giroud’s headed assist to Ramsey against Dortmund. How he managed to tower above everyone else to somehow reach the cross, and nod it down into Ramsey’s path, perhaps only Ollie will know.

    Third, much much before, the wonder run started with our home game against the Spuds. A £100m lineup against a side that was reeling from an opening day lass to Villa, Ozil still not in the side. Who won the day for us? Giroud again.

    Here’s from the man himself: “It is a quality when you are a striker to not always be greedy and when you have a team-mate well placed on the pitch, in a good position, you have to assist him. Strikers are judged on their goals but we must also [provide] assists and that is what I try to do: help my team-mates”.

    And from Arsene: “That is what makes him great,” said Wenger. “He missed some chances but always got the support of our fans because he shows he is ready for a fight. The fact that he kept going got him a goal. How much has he improved? I don’t know. But he has. That’s obvious to everybody. If he keeps working like that then he will improve again. I like his spirit.”

    Thank you Ollie for teh ongoing show, and thanks you Rocky for a fantastic post.

  74. arnie says:

    What a fantastic tribute from Jack as well!

    Great banter everyone, keep em coming!!!! :D :D

  75. Big Raddy says:

    arnie. Top comment

  76. dandan says:

    Thanks to all you guys who replied to my post. I really should not have interfered with Rocky’s post, but my computer now seems to have put my WordPress account right.
    Any way my intention was not to suggest you lot go soft on Spurs as the only gooner growing up in a family of spuds, I well knew the feeling of verbal when Spurs did the double in 1961. No more, I am concerned with the growing feeling in the blogging that we are destined to win the league. As a certain Mr AW keeps saying it is a marathon not a sprint and we aint reached the first feeding table yet, softly softly is for me the way to underline our class. Mind you were Dad still alive I suspect he might have got a little reminder that he had better mind the gap 

  77. chas says:

    I don’t think any of us believe we are destined to win the League, even Sir Terence of Syrupsville. (or if he does, it’s because that’s his de facto position every second of his waking life until that point where it’s mathematically impossible for it to happen :) ).

    I think 2007-8 taught all of us that anything can happen when you are top of table; from Eduardo to Billy Gallas in the centre circle.

    What seems different this season is that we aren’t playing catch up and we still haven’t been beaten by a team above us in the table. :)
    Enjoy it while it’s happening is my philosophy.

  78. dandan says:

    Nice bit of trivia courtesy of Bill Edgar in today’s Times
    Ryan Giggs’s top-flight career (1991 to date) overlapped with …
    Peter Shilton’s (1966 to 1991), which overlapped with …
    Stanley Matthews’s (1933 to 1965), which overlapped with … Elisha Scott’s (1912 to 1934).
    A century of football spanned by four players.

  79. arnie says:

    Chas: “Enjoy it while it’s happening” indeed. :D :D Keep the ante up!!!!

    Raddy: Thanks a lot. :oops:

  80. chas says:

    Villa getting battered.
    The swingometer will be predicting them only getting 90 points if they’re not careful. :)

  81. chas says:

    Ante doesn’t need any keeping up, apart from when he’s had one of the eight.

  82. chas says:

    “one over the eight”

  83. chas says:
  84. arnie says:

    chas: :D

  85. 26may1989 says:

    dandan @8.17pm, that is an epic fact, thanks for spreading it.

  86. dhakka09 says:

    If we win tomorrow and Dortmund lose (which looks more probable given their injury problems), we are through. Not that we need any helping hand, but less pressure for Napoli away would be nice and positive for our players to play their natural game :D
    In other news, Spuds got what they deserved after crowing all summer on how finish above us and win the league. Like chickens being plucked off their feathers, they look even more naked atop that basketball than out French striker in calender :D

  87. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Dandan

    It’s easy for you to be so sensible. You’ve got a beard :-)

  88. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Crikey, Rocky, thank you very much.

    It’s rare that I don’t get on, so by morning me manners have gone.
    Completely agree about Ollie, although I’ve been thinking.

    Are there any training systems, or covert drugs, that can make you accelerate/run faster, because if there are and we put some into our stallion’s nose bag, we’d probably have the perfect CF.

  89. MickyDidIt89 says:

    I so so wish I was going to the game tonight, as I have this growing feeling that this could be our CL year.

  90. dhakka09 says:

    Micky: dandan is sensible but not because he has a beard.My thoughts venture off to a certain ginger-bearded manager in North London who doesn’t look particularly sensible right now ;)

  91. chas says:

    Micky,
    You’re just setting yourself up for a fall.

  92. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Oh 09, do come on. A ginger beard means something entirely different :-)

    Chas,
    I will not doom :-)

  93. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Is Flamini back for tonight?

  94. chas says:

    I have to leave early. Sorry to party poop.

  95. MickyDidIt89 says:

    09
    Just looked at the CL Table, and in fact if we win, then Napoli only need a draw in Dortmund to put us through.

  96. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Mind you, the thought of having to go to Naples and get at least a draw is some scary thought. bearing in mind Naploi will know a win would put them through.

  97. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Ok, later peoples.

  98. Big Raddy says:

    Motning All,

    No Micky, fear not, we shall overcome

  99. arnie says:

    Motning all, “we shall overcome” indeed!!!! I hope though that we do not spend too much energy today. Any win will do!!!!

    This nude calendar business is a bit off-putting. I see why Chas was a hesitant to post this. BTW, I seem to remember that Sagna had a similar one as well. Is this the current French fashion? Did Henry have one?

  100. evonne says:

    stop it right there arnie – nude photo of Thierry????? ooooogghhhhh…Peaches, are you reading this?

  101. arnie says:

    evonne: somehow, I was expecting this reaction!!!! :D :D

  102. Feng says:

    Shard has been talking about having exams for as long as I can remember, and he still appears in every blog I read…haha..Go and study dude!

    meanwhile there’s that thesis I need to finish…

  103. evonne says:

    you stitched me up arnie! lovely, I supose it wasn’t difficult :)

    Micky – you are going to the game in my pocket tonight :) Peaches pockets are already full

  104. evonne says:

    whaaaaat a comeback from Villa!

  105. dhakka09 says:

    Micky: yeah, we need to better any result Dortmund pull to go through this week. If they draw and we win, that’s good too.

    arnie: talking about Giroud calender picture and off-putting on the same sentence, do you notice where his hand is tucked in? (just to make it even more off-putting for you) :D

  106. Räsp says:

    Motning all,

    I see Nik continues to shoot himself in the foot. Bendy’s a very lucky boy, imagine how Diaby must feel to see a fully fit player throw their career away when his is blighted by injury?

  107. dandan says:

    Oh dear, Mickey you have only seen me in my present disguise, In my younger days I spent 50 years as a carrot top :-)

  108. Räsp says:

    Ok, its Champions League again ……..

    ….. New post ………

  109. blog says:

    It’s really entry levels when it comes to black colored metal without reserving unyielding love to suit another factor. Phantom’s shouts are actually characteristic for the style, with a bit of mileage provided to their harshness.

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