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Saturday, 23 October 2010

My Top Five Favourite Arsenal Players

Hello again, its Friday, its a few hours until live Football and its time for a quick history lesson. Well, I say History lesson, its basically me listing my five favourite players to where the colours of Arsenal. Now, lets say this, I will not lie, I’ve been following Arsenal since 2001/2002, I’m not going to put players from the 70s/80s/90s just because they are legends, simply because YES, I know about the club’s fine history but NO, I wasn’t there to see them play and therefore I have no grounds to comment on them, so here’s my list:

5) Andrey Arshavin – Maybe its too recent to add him to many top 5 lists, but I just think the man is a silent genius. On his day he is the best attacking player in the Premiership, his vision and his touch is unreal. The thing that lets him down is his current form and his laziness. He has all the potential yet he doesn’t tend to use it all. However, since his 4 at Anfield I’ve loved Arshavin and I think if he can be on his game all the time, we’ll win something with him.

4) Freddie Ljungberg – The man himself that could argue he got me supporting Arsenal, if you don’t know the story, it goes I watched the 2002 cup final, he scored, I brought an Arsenal shirt, rest is history. However, during most of his time at Arsenal, Freddie was amazing. With his goals he carried us to that Premiership title in 2002 (along with many others). 46 goals in 216 appearances is not bad for a Midfielder either. However, not only did he score goals he set up his fair share too, he was the perfect package. I could not dismiss the man from my list simply because without him, I’d probably be some Wolves fan who shouts “Grr..kill ‘em Karl Henry!” instead of some Wolves fan who shouts “YES! Play football Matt Jarvis!”.

3) Dennis Bergkamp - :O How dare I put God 3rd you may ask? Well I did! No, I love Bergkamp, he was by far our must talented player in years when he came. His vision, his work-rate, his desire, his GOAL AGAINST NEWCASTLE! Dennis was a perfect footballer. The only reason he doesn’t get higher than 3rd is because, as much as I loved him, I never seemed to appreciate him openly as much as I did others. It was only when watching some of his stuff months ago I was like “Wow, that man, is a God”. I can only hope Arshavin or Wilshere become half the player Dennis the Menace was, because if they do you can shove your Rooney’s, Drogba’s and Tevez’ up your Arse—nal.

2) Cesc Fabregas – When he leaves, I will cry over it. He is the heartbeat of our team and he is another genius. There’s only one man who could beat him in this list. I don’t think Cesc needs much explanation, the man is almost as perfect as Dennis. All we need is for him to be fit every week and denounce his love for Barcelona and we’d be unstoppable.

1) Thierry Henry – How could this man not be first. If there’s one player who I wanted to be like (and I was a striker as a player) it was Henry. The amount of goals and memories he left us, and a player who left with dignity. To see him play as many times as I did, I feel honoured. I feel Henry is a type of striker that comes around once in a decade, and I’m surprised he didn’t win “Player of the Year” every year. I wish we still had him but what can you do? I’m just glad he has so many medals with us and loves us that much.

UPDATE: Notable Mentions

Patrick Vieira
Robert Pires
David Seaman
Jens Lehmann
Robin Van Persie
Jack Wilshere

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Man Utd: An Empire About to Crumble?

Hello folks, well Spurs made us laugh for 45 minutes, Eduardo made us cry happily for 45 minutes, Arsenal won 5-1 over 90+ minutes and I need to sleep in 10 minutes. However, today is not about any of those. Unless you click on blogs for the fun of it you probably have read the title, and so then without much more mindless babbling lets get to it.

We have all read now that Wayne Rooney has his mind set on leaving Old Trafford whenever that may be and we have all chuckled (if we’re not United fans) and we’ve all pondered where he’s likely to go. However, that is not strictly all of this blog either. I have a vision now that this could see the end of this major empire built by Fergie, like any empire it has to cease and collapse, and like Liverpool, this empire is about to implode.

Let me set the scene, in 12-18 months, Scholes, Giggs, Gary Neville and Edwin Van Der Sar could all have hung up their boots/gloves and called it a day. Now, that’s alright, 4 players who in any team other than United would probably get 10-15 games between them each year (other than Van Der Sar depending on who the other goalkeeping options are). Now I’m not slagging off Giggs, Scholes and Neville, we all know how good they are, I just assume they wouldn’t be in every game outside United. But I digress, these are 4 players who are the spine of this United team. Then, add in Rooney who’s off too that makes their best player and goalscorer. 5 KEY players, now they could buy people in, but they have no money. We all know that £5m of that £50m transfer on Rooney goes to Fergie and the rest to servicing the debt left by the Glazers. Here’s the major problem, who would United have left? Who right now could fill a void left by Giggs, Scholes, Neville, Van Der Sar and Rooney? You could argue Fletcher and Carrick, but I don’t rate Carrick and Fletcher is one man. Even then, who’s a good full-back, I can only think of Wes Brown, and he’s probably a few years from retirement too. Up front you have Berbatov and Hernandez, Berbartov despite his form is not as good as Rooney. When you draw up your World XI’s Rooney (in form) makes the Staring XI’s every time or at least is on the bench. Berbartov is lucky if he even gets a call to come train with them. As for Hernandez, I don’t think he can carry United to much. In goal, their sub (sorry I don’t want to attempt his name) wants to go and he’s no Van Der Sar, errors aside he’s in the Top 5 keepers in the world.

However, I also see, as I always imagined, that when these 4 greats have retired, I see Fergie calling it time too. Now with no Fergurson, how many of those players do I see perhaps wanting to go over to sunny Real Madrid? A few. Who is Fergurson’s replacement? I don’t think Jose will leave Madrid until he’s won everything there, so it has to be someone who’s below Fergie and Mourinho. I don’t know? Mick McCarthy? But he’s at Wolves.

I’m not saying this is a definite, I just have a feeling that in the near future this could be the end. United are already slipping behind the likes of Chelsea and City, even Arsenal should finish ahead of them this season, this wont be an overnight thing but a soon thing. If they finish outside the Top 3 this year, even Top 4, be afraid.