Tag Archives: Ian Wright

Mesut Ozil, Alexis Sanchez, Jack Wilshere, Arsenal’s Defensive Crisis & More

So a week or so without blogging has done me well. I feel refreshed, I have learnt some new words, and I have actually got some proper work done. But I am back, and I thought a good way to start off would be a recap of stuff that I would have blogged on in the last few weeks…

Mesut Ozil & Alexis Sanchez

Speculation is increasing that both will leave on a free in the summer. I would have dumped them both last summer and got in some replacements. My opinion is the same for January. Take what we can, and get in some replacements (Thomas Lemar and Julian Draxler still getting talked about).

Harry Winks

Who? Was what I asked when he got called up for England.

It turns out he plays for Spurs, and has started 4 Premier League games in his career. Good job devaluing the shirt Gareth. Still baffles me as to how Theo Walcott fails to make the England squad whilst the links of Jesse Lingard and this Winks fella get in.

THAT Spurs Book

White Hart Lane: The Spurs Glory Years 1899-2017

  • 2 League titles
  • 8 FA Cups

Arsene Wenger: We Want You to Stay 1996-2017

  • 3 League titles
  • 7 FA Cups

Spurs really are a deluded bunch.

“Super Clubs”

A lot has been written in recent years about Super Clubs. The likes of Manchester United, Barcelona, Real Madrid and Bayern Munich. A lot of what has been written is positive, blue prints on how they got to where they are, and how others should attain to get there.

Whilst the likes of the 4 previously mentioned sides, alongside the likes of Juventus. Inter and AC Milan are at the top of the footballing hierarchy, the life of a football club is cyclical, and just because you eat from the top table, does not mean you will not have your struggles.

Man U, for example, have not been the same since Sir Alex Ferguson left. The other British Super Club, Liverpool, are 26 years without a title.

Bayern Munich, after years of everyone saying this is how you run a club seem to be intent in ripping themselves apart through internal politics. Whilst the famed Barcelona La Masia academy seems to be no longer producing world superstars.

Real Madrid sit 7 points off top and have won just 2 league titles in 10 years.

The two Milan clubs have also struggled since Juventus returned from the match fixing scandal.

These are all great clubs. They have the history, the success, the European trophies. Yet they are like every other club, they have good periods and bad periods.

Arsenal are not at that top table. We have never been, and whilst we wish we were at the top, the fact is we are the level below.

Every clubs have their troubles, no matter if they are a super club, the one we should all dream to become, the one which we all try and copy. No one is immune from a poor period, a period of turmoil.

Sean Dyche for Arsenal

So Ian Wright said Sean Dyche could be the next Arsenal manager. Whilst I agree that Arsenal legends should not be abused for their view, they are not free from criticism. And this view point is just a little bit silly from Ian Wright.

I have seen some fans backing him. “Anyone but that c**T Wenger” I saw one Facebook post from an admin of a page with 25,000 people. This is just stupidity.

The majority of us believe that Arsene Wenger’s time is over, but it should not be anyone but Wenger. This is just stupid.

When Wenger does go, we need to get an elite manager. A proven winner. Do not let your agenda lead you down a path of anyone but Wenger.

Jack Wilshere

After two poor England performances, where the side lacked creativity, plenty are calling for Jack Wilshere to be rushed back into the first team.

We all know that Wilshere is England’s best central midfielder, and if fit, starts. But let’s not rush him.

I would not play him in any international friendly until the World Cup preparation starts at the end of the season. Concentrate on letting him get fit, and stay fit. The 2 weeks off every few weeks will do him the world of good. Then at the World Cup, he will (hopefully) be fit and ready to go.

What is the point in playing him in meaningless friendlies?

Defensive Crisis

So Shkodran Mustafi pulled up with what looked like a hamstring problem for Germany against Azerbaijan. It has also been reported as a thigh strain.

With Laurent Koscielny plagued once more by his troublesome achilles, it is being reported that Arsenal face a defensive crisis ahead of the game against Watford.

The usual moaners are complaining that we did not buy a centre back in the summer.

If the above two are out, it still leaves us with Rob Holding, Per Mertesacker and Nacho Monreal as the back 3. That is the same back 3 that won us the FA Cup Final. And we still have Calum Chambers in reserve.

I would not be surprised if Koscielny is fit to start on Saturday. His withdrawal from the French squad is more of a precaution.

But if he is out, we are certainly not in a defensive crisis.

The International Break

Mixed results for Arsenal players, as Mohamed Elneny, Alex Iwobi, Olivier Giroud, Nacho Monreal and Alexandre Lacazette helped their countries qualify.

Meanwhile Aaron Ramsey Wales and Sead Kolasinac’s Serbia just missed out on a play off.

I did smile when I read the moody dog shagger Alexis Sanchez will not be at the World Cup. Call me petty, but whilst he (and Mesut Ozil) want out of Arsenal, I want as little success for the pair as possible – unless it is in an Arsenal shirt.


Jamie Vardy: The New Ian Wright

I went down the Lane,
The other night,
To tell the Y**s,
We got the new Ian Wright,

They said to me,
How can that be?
I said to them,
We got Thierry Henry…

Thierry Henry, Thierry Henry,
Thierry Henry, Thierry Henry,
Thierry Henry, Thierry Henry,
Thierry Henry, Thierry Henry!

10 JAN 1996:  Ian Wright of Arsenal listens to the cheers of the supporters after he scored in the Coca Cola Cup quarter final match against Newcastle at Highbury.

That was 1999. 17 years ago. And whilst Thierry Henry was Ian Wright like when putting the ball into the back of the net, on and off the pitch he was a completely different character.

Less charismatic. More thoughtful. More concerned with his own image. Not a bit of a nasty piece of work.

And it is that last one which set Ian Wright apart from other strikers in the 1990s. He was a nasty piece of work.

Whilst England was full of polite, well-mannered player; Alan Shearer, Teddy Sheringham, Gary Linekar, Les Ferdinand. Ian Wright for all intents and purposes, a bit of a scum bag.

Growing up on a council estate in poverty, 3 to a bed, he would do time in Chelmsford before getting his break as a professional footballer. At 21 he was working manual jobs in Greenwich, already a young father to both Shaun and Bradley, he finally got his chance at Crystal Palace just 3 months shy of his 22nd birthday.

At Palace, he developed into one of the most deadly strikers in England. including when he scored a hat-trick in just eighteen minutes in Palace’s penultimate game of the 1990/91 season away to Wimbledon.

Whilst scoring goals, he never forgot where he was from, who he represented. He was still that nasty piece of work from the streets. Happy to put his foot in. Wind an opponent up. Start a fight.

In 1991 he joined Arsenal, he was a little shy of 28. The medals, the records, the suspensions, the FA disciplinary records, they all rolled in.

We all loved him, opponents all hated him.

He was a nasty piece of work on the pitch, but a deadly goal scorer. A c**t but our c**t.

25 years after we signed him, Arsenal are on the verge of repeating a similar feet. Jamie Vardy.

Vardy has taken a similar, and well written about, path to Premier League football. From non league to Premier League in less than 5 years.

He has scored goals everywhere he has been, but at no point has he lost his edge. His nasty streak. That thing you need when playing Saturday league football in Sheffield.

He is not politically correct, he is not interview trained, he, like Ian Wright, is just a normal bloke who is good at football. And came into the game late enough that he has not had his personality, his nastiness, coached out of him.

Wright was signed for £2.5m when the world record transfer fee was just £8m. Vardy will join for around £20m when the world record is £80+. Fairly similar prices.

I will never forget the first time I heard about Jamie Vardy. He was at Fleetwood Town and someone I go football with, who is also from Fleetwood, was banging on about him. “He will play for England one day” “I’d love Wenger to sign him” “31 goals in 36 games”. Of course, we all laughed. He was in the conference at the time!

In one year at Fleetwood he became a club legend, scored the goals to win them the conference, then moved to Leicester City for £1m.

Already at Arsenal, we have our Alan Smith, by Monday I hope we have signed our new Ian Wright.

I went down the Lane,
The other night,
To tell the Y**s,
We got the new Ian Wright,

They said to me,
How can that be?
I said to them,
We got Jamie Vardy…

Jamie Vardy, Jamie Vardy,
Jamie Vardy, Jamie Vardy,
Jamie Vardy, Jamie Vardy,
Jamie Vardy, Jamie Vardy!


Stop sucking the fun out of football

132There are a lot of things I hate about modern day football. Ticket prices, the lack of connection between clubs and fans, attention seekers who try to become YouTube / twitter celebrities, no beer at half time, LadBible fans, the PC brigade censoring our songs, no standing, no swearing. Basically no fun.

And it has become worse over recent weeks. Pundits and other fans have attempted to suck the last bit of fun out of being a football supporter.

We are no longer allowed to take the micky out of other sides when they lose.

Firstly we had last weekend. Spurs lost 5-1. To a team who were down to 10 men. Who were already relegated. And it resulted in Arsenal finishing above Spurs for the 21st season in a row. And how we laughed. How we celebrated. And how we laughed even more.

But then the fun police appeared.

Robbie Savage on 606;

“They left Highbury all those years ago to compete with the best in Europe,” he told 606. “[Instead] they’ve scraped past Tottenham, are ten points behind Leicester City, and they’re celebrating. It’s ridiculous.”

So according to Robbie Savage, we can not celebrate finishing above our local rivals, on the last day of the season, in sensational style. Don’t have fun.

Ian Wright also got in on the act;

“Those Arsenal fans should be thinking about what could have been, not what is.”

Taking into account the passion he showed in an Arsenal shirt, and the hatred he often showed for the likes of Spurs, Man U and The FA, I was surprised by his comment.

You would think Wrighty would understand the passion of the fan. But no, he missed the point. Arsenal were not celebrating finishing 2nd. We know it was a missed opportunity. We were laughing at Spurs, and celebrating at finishing above them. Again. The wheels coming off. Again.

We have previously seen it with the likes of Roy Keane, Jamie Carragher and others. Trying to dictate from a TV studio how fans should celebrate. How they should release their passion. How they should have fun.

According to these, you should only celebrate your own team doing well, and the only thing Arsenal can do well is win the league. Nothing else should be enjoyed.

On Sunday, we should have all gone home. Turned off the radio and TV, sat in a dark room and cried. We should not have been out having a drink up in the sun with our pals. Laughing at Tottenham. Singing It’s happened again. No having fun.

And then last night, how we all laughed at Liverpool.

1-0 up at half time and cruising. To then see 11 men go missing in the second half and Sevilla run riot in a 3-1 victory.

Most people had a laugh. Mocked the Scouser’s. Took pleasure in their defeat.

But then the fun police reappeared.

Should Arsenal fan’s be laughing won they won F*** All?

Klopp has done more this season than Wenger in 7 years, why are you mocking him?

There were plenty of similar things said last night on Twitter.

Apparently, we should not mock Liverpool for losing a cup final despite being ahead because we did not make one.

It seems the footballing world has gone mad. We as fans are no longer allowed to have fun at other clubs expense.

Part of football is not just seeing your own team do well, but seeing other teams fail. Watching their fans cry on the tele.CixDD_NWYAM8nR4

I take tremendous joy in seeing kids in Tottenham shirts crying on the TV. I love seeing grown men crying on the terraces. I laugh watching vines of bingo winged women celebrating a non-existent goal at Newcastle.

Football is joyful. It is a release. Look at Birmingham City fans. Despite being in the Championship, finishing 10th, they loved Aston Villa getting relegated.

Please, pundits and fellow fans, stop trying to take the fun out of football. Stop trying to dictate how and when fans should celebrate.

If Crystal Palace win on Saturday. I will laugh. It does not matter that Arsenal did not make the final.