Author Archives: goonersx

RIP Steve Aka Lordhillwood

On the morning of 4th August we lost our dear Friend Steve, who was known to us and many as Lordhillwood.

Back in 1998 I bought my 1st home computer, with the sole reason to chat about The Arsenal. A few years later I found an Arsenal website called ArseOnLine.com which was on the Rivals network. You thought of a user name, signed up and chatted on the message board which was a done in threads. It was completly anonymous, It was dog eat dog, proper old skool lad terrace/pub behavoiur. I loved it.

There wasn’t loads of Arsenal using it so those on there regulary soon got to reconise each others user names and the birth of internet fweinds begain. Now a fella called Ike ran the webiste, but Lordhillwood was the regular admin on the message board, he made sure we didn’t over step the mark too much and covered our backs when we did..

Part of the appeal of Rivals was once you were regestered on ArseOnline you could then go take the piss on other clubs message boards, which we often did and Lordhillwood had to pick up the pieces. We would plan to invade the tottenham or Chelsea messageboard and all hit them with abuse at the same time. Back then it was an admins nightmare, but it passed the time at work for the rest of us.

We would spend the days at work and often nights chatting about The Arsenal and generally about life. Friday afternoon would be “weekend plans” which for Lordhillwood was always Champange, whisky and cigar nights with his friends in the UKs embassy in Poland on a Friday, Watching the game on a Saturday  in the pub and spending time with his family. He was also friendly with some of Polands finest lads which some of his more intersting stories came from…

This was long before Facebook or Twitter so it was very easy to create your own persona or indeed be taken for your word, Lordhillwood, who was the oldest of us all had the persona of a well connected, well educated upper middle class bloke, with a great job, even if he was always a bit non-discript about it. He kinda gave me the impression he worked for MI6, or indeed travelled in those circles.

As I said above this messageboard could be harsh, we all took the piss out of each other, we still do now in our whatsapp group, we constantly abused each other, we constantly fell out, but if any fans of other teams came on we would all back each other and back The Arsenal, thats how message board life was on Rivals.

One of funniest days was when we all decided to change our user names, poor Lordhillwood and Ike had no idea who was who and  as daft as it now sounds I was laughing my head off sitting in the corner of a telesales office whilst pretending to be working and we all still laugh about it now.

After Rivals were bought out by Sky Ike decided to give up AOL, Steve didn’t have the time to run a blog full time and as I was between jobs I took over the blog on a new platform and  we agreed to rename it SheWoreAYellowRibbon. Without Lordhillwood as an admin on AOL there would be no Shewore.com.

Facebook and then Twitter ended the days of messageboards but Lordhillwood  soon found his way on Twitter, with his own unqiue views. He had his opinions on The Arsenal and politics and no-one would change them. With Facebook became faces to user names and we all started meeting up for games and getting closer as mates.

About 8years ago Lordhillwood came over for a rare visit to London and we spent a few days together, Friday night beers and a curry from Brick Lane, a good old chat about bugger all and he crashed on my sofa. On the Saturday we went up The Arsenal and carried on the drinking, I think i last saw him staggering off to meet some people (women) in The Tollington.

Then came podcasts, I would love it when I was on the Bergkamp Wonderland podcast with Lordhillwood, we would often have a good gossip and catch up before and then again after. He was a popular voice on there and many would listen just for his views.

Lordhillwood was a great believer in fans rights, had a great insight into the finances at Arsenal, was fair about Wenger and above all didn’t ever need any excuse to put the boot into Gerry Payton the once goal keeping coach. He always spoke his mind and never admitted he was wrong

I know all the lads connected with that podcast became great friends with him and are really feeling it too right now.

Lordhillwood also dabbled into writing blogs and wrote some great pieces, it’s a shame he didn’t write more as he really was talented and had a way with words.

Now I can’t say its always been sweetness and light, Lordhillwood and I and the others that met on AOL have all fallen in and out over the years. We started by rowing with each other and winding each other up and that just kind of never changed. But everyome will miss the silly sod and everyone is deeply affected by this.

The Arsenal throws people together, people who have nothing whats so ever in common, people from all ages, backgrounds, races, religions, education, poltical leanings and sometimes they clash. But some people improve your lifes, give you a different perspective and are just decent people and Lordhillwood was one of those. He was a great listener as well as a great talker, he could debate the smallest of points for years and for that I /we will always respect him and miss him, even the times he was wrong and drove us nuts.

Lordhillwood had a lifelong passion for our great club, he would often tell tales of games and players before our years he loved passing on his wisdom and experences in football as well as life. We are less of a fanbase without him and he will be greatly missed.

So on behalf of  all the lads who started by typing at each other on AOL to pass the time at work, only to become lifelong mates, I just wanna say thank you Steve, love and thoughts to your family, we will miss you. YNWA.

Gav, David I, Dan, Neil, Ade, Paul T, Darren, Paul G, Richard, David H, Rory, Jon and Mark.

AKA

Gooner_sx, Ike, Keenos, CEG, Barsteward, Mouth, Romford_Pele, Nemo, Islington_Resident, Gooner1971, B’Jesus, Sicknote and Cros.

 

 

Advertisements

Arsenal fan groups message to Stan Kroenke

A month ago a meeting was held in a Pub on Holloway road, representatives from all the fans groups, some bloggers and some people who have been active in fans rights attended, getting everyone in the same room was a mission in itself. The idea of this meeting was to see if we could all come together for the greater good and to try and speak with one voice, Together Stronger ! We all agreed to a man and a women that the way the club is being run right now both on and off the pitch is not what’s expected of The Arsenal.

A month of talks has since taken place, compromise was made by all still involved and a lot of hard work has gone into it thus far. The statement below has been sent to the club ahead of the next fans meeting later on this month. Answers and a clear idea on the future will be expected or future actions will be put in place . This is hopefully just the start of us all working together. The message to Stan is clear #WeCareDoYou.

Gav + Keenos

Statement –

As Arsenal fans we have watched with frustration as the team’s football performances have
declined over the past decade. When Stan Kroenke began buying Arsenal shares the club
had just competed in a first Champions League final. Twelve years on, Arsenal are about to
play in the Europa League for the third year running.

Off the pitch, fans have never felt more marginalised, less listened to or valued. This was nsadly illustrated when Stan Kroenke forcibly bought out the last remaining supporter-shareholders without even a word of appreciation for their custodianship role in the club.

It feels as though Arsenal is at a crossroads. Things need to change.

What all of us as signatories to this statement want to see is meaningful action by Stan
Kroenke to reinvigorate our football club.

This requires work to strengthen the club’s board and football executive and to once again
make Arsenal a place where fans have a real sense of belonging.

Change needs to start with better leadership. In his takeover document Stan Kroenke said:
‘KSE’s ambitions for the club are to see it competing consistently to win the Premier League
and the Champions League.’

We see little evidence of how this is to be achieved. Instead our club feels like an
investment vehicle, personified by the owner’s statement that he didn’t buy Arsenal to win
trophies.

It is sad that an institution like Arsenal FC has such passive ownership. All of us want to
see a clear sense of purpose and direction. KSE should start by being more open and
accountable and explain how they intend to achieve the goal of winning the game’s major
trophies.

If Stan Kroenke is going to be absent from London he needs to make sure the board he
delegates to is fit for purpose.

There is a desperate need for some new and dynamic appointments. The addition of
independently-minded directors can act as a genuine check and balance on the owner.
Ideal candidates would have football and commercial expertise relevant to the needs of a
football club in 2019, and ideally some ‘Arsenal DNA’.

Arsenal have invested money in recent years, but their approach to both buying players and
paying wages looks uncoordinated and appears to lack strategy. There has also been a lot
of turnover in the senior football personnel. A strong board would be proactively managing
this.

On a matchday the Emirates Stadium can be a soulless place. The atmosphere is poor and
there are thousands of empty seats blighting almost every game. If Arsenal really cared
they would make sure seats weren’t left empty by investing in an improved ticketing system
and actively supporting initiatives like safe standing. The club uses the strapline ‘Always
ahead of the game’. It would be good to see action to demonstrate this.

Finally, the very fabric of football in England and across Europe is at threat from proposals
for a European Super League.

These moves are driven by the greed of a few so-called elite clubs who want guaranteed
entry into top-level European competition every year. Why care if you finish fifth or lower if
automatic qualification is guaranteed? Arsenal and the other clubs involved should
understand that fans do not want more meaningless group stage fixtures designed only to
rake in more broadcast and ticketing revenue. You could call it the ‘franchisation’ of
European Football. Arsenal should immediately clarify they will have no part in this.

As Arsenal Supporters, we care deeply. We would like to hear from our club and see
actions that demonstrate that they do too. The first opportunity comes when the Managing
Director and Head of Football speak to invited supporters on July 25th.

We urge them to
address the issues raised here. We will watch with interest.

Signatories:
Arseblog
Arsenal Armed Forces Supporters Club
Arsenal Supporters’ Trust (AST)
Black Scarf Movement (BSM)
Highbury Library
Highbury Squad
Hugh Wizzy
Gooner Fanzine
Goonerholic
Gunners Town
Gunnerblog
Le Grove
REDACTION
She Wore A Yellow Ribbon
You Are My Arsenal Blog
7am Kick Off

 

Europa Final Preview – Fuck UEFA

First things first I have the upmost respect to everyone whose travelled at great expense to Baku. Some will be taking a week away from family and work to get there and back.

I know people travelling via Riga, Kiev, Tibilsi and Dubai. Some have spent even more money to get there quicker. All in all it has been a complete shitstorm, this is the final that will be remembered more for UEFA making the stupid decision to stage it in Baku than the game itself. Hopefully a half empty stadium will teach them a lesson.

We have covered the reasons why Baku is so so unsuitable on prevoius blogs, but adding to that the some local hotal owners have been cancelling travelling fans accommodation. Some with 24 hours notice and some when people have turned up to check in. Pure greed and as low as ticket touts in my eyes.

Now the club, the main sponser (a bloody airline) and the official travel partner (the soon to be skint Thomas Cook) have also failed to cover themselfs in any glory. The club have failed to get fans there, have failed to provide anywhere in Islington to watch the game and IF we do win the trophy parade will be when most of our brave travelling fans are still scattered all over easten Europe. I do however feel for the everyday staff at the club who have been doing there very best, but with the top brass seemly not very interested in helping fans they didn’t have much to work with.

Thmoas cook have even delayed an official flight with under 24 hours notice, meaning the fans on ther flights not only have to suffer a booze free flight but they wont have much time to grab a few beers before the game.  As for Emarites, do they even know we are playing in a final (?)

As for the game itself, well we haven’t had much luck in Europe in our history, but this final has the added edge that winning it will put us in the Champions League next season. with Chelsea already in next years Champions League this gives us a huge advantage. Our players will be on huge bonuses and wage increases if we win, Chelsea players already have those bonuses in the bag and lets face facts nothing says more to players these days than the money.

Cech is likely to be starting between the sticks,in his last game before he takes up a directors role at Chelsea, now if I say that’s the most stupid decision by Emery this season I’m hoping to be proven wrong.

A back 3 of Papa, Kos and Mustafi is expected with Kola and AMN playing as wing backs.

Torrieira and Xhaka should play as the 2 centre midfielders with Ozil given a free role ahead of them. We need those 3 to know when to break forwards when Lacca and Auba, who will be on fire, split the Chelsea Centre backs, hopefully one of the midfielders has been watching videos of Ramsey who we will miss loads.

Anyways, Hope everyone reading this either in Baku or on your way has a great day and is the usual loud and proud. Hope everyone else gets out of work early and has a great night.

COME ON YOU RIP ROARING TOP SCORING REDSSSSSSS