Smoking guns and battered chickens. :)

February 27, 2012 20 Comments by Sian

Let’s be honest, this season, does anyone know whether we’re upside down or left or right or in or out any more? There may well have been good feeling ahead of yesterday’s North London Derby (I love that about Arsenal fans… doom and gloom in the days before, but Morning Of – we feel invincible!). Somehow, though, I don’t think even the most cheerful of people could have predicted an outcome like the one that eventually –well, came out.

It was the most terrifically Arsenal of beginnings – a funky line-up lacking an Ox but full of Czech and Israeli and most importantly, a Koscielny and a Gibbs. We’d all assumed Koscielny would start given the positive mumblings we’d heard throughout the week but it seemed old Gibbo was knacked once more. Well shame on us for assuming the Knackdom of Gibbs – for he started. I was pleased about this because – no offence to the other players – but Gibbs understands a North London Derby. Surely so too do Robin and Theo etc. by now, but nevertheless THIS remains one of my favourite Arsenal photos of recent times. Those three know an NLD when they see one.

Anyhow, Tiny Tottz arrived more full of it than ever before. I doubt anyone thought we had a chance in hell. Face it, this season Tottenham have been better than Arsenal and their 10-point lead over in the league said as much. That their best season and our worst season in about 15 years have come at the same time is an even bigger pain in the arse than having to reside in North London through it all. Their ‘Mind the Gap’ bollocks was deafening, and hilarious, but mostly annoying.

So, we really didn’t want to go on stretching that lead to 13 points now, did we? Given the week from hell that proceeded yesterday, it somehow felt not out of our reach that we’d somehow manage to extend it to 18 points in one afternoon. I don’t know how, but it seemed we’d have found a way.  And I can’t have been the only one thinking ‘Oh bollocks, here comes a trashing’, when we allowed Louis Saha to put them ahead less than four minutes in. Our defence was sawn in half like an unlucky magician’s assistant and Szczesny could only clutch at air as he followed the ball into the back of the net.

This isn’t the plan, Arsenal. Stop improvising the script. My sister noted at the time that it was for the best that Tottenham had gone ahead rather than us. She was right, we all know what we’re like at holding a lead – and their early goal and our early cock up really did seem to, ahem, spur us into action. (Let’s all agree we’re not allowed to use that word any more. From now on – we gunned into action, OK? Gunned. With our big guns. Guns gunned like gunning guns do).

From that unfortunate early moment, we were given a kick up the backside we so rarely respond to. From the beginning, Rosicky and Benayoun were stand out players. It was like they’d finally had enough. Robin had a few attempts at goal, but probably the nearest was Tomas’s header from a corner. Brad Friedel tipped it over the crossbar, in spite of having had absolutely no right to do so. Things went further wrong when good karma decided to not only move out of our marital bed and retire to the spare room, but to actually head down Seven Sisters Road and shack up with the ugly cowboy builder who’s always had designs on her.

Gareth Bale didn’t dive, because Gareth Bale doesn’t dive. He may have had two cautions this season for –simulation- but that’s only because he’s so good that the air around him becomes really sensitive and that an arm or a hand invading that space air around his gifted legs can sometimes cause an shift in gravity only felt by Gareth Bale. The result is him coming crashing down, always lucky not to break or lose any of his superstar silky skillzzz.

I quite like Gareth Bale. I don’t particularly dislike any Spurs player besides the obvious, but he was a knobber yesterday. His won penalty was probably his greatest contribution to the game. Adebayor stepped up to take it, promptly put it away, then did his Pillock Dance in celebration. It’s weird though, because instead of feeling disheartened that everything was going wrong, it too seemed to help GUN us into life again.

Then came the forehead of Beautiful Bacary. Check THIS out and try not to grin. His header was a vicious bullet of a header, from a man who’d had it up to his eyeballs with bad things happening. His celebration was a quick roarette on way back to placing the ball on the centre spot. Bacary still had business to tend to. Business that was helped by the captain two minutes from half time, when Robin did what only Robin can do. For the first twenty minutes or two, I was really concerned by him. I know he’s a striker and needs the service but all he really seemed to be doing was running around aimlessly. He’s had a few off games lately (haven’t we all), and I prayed this wasn’t another for him. But then he went all Flying Dutchman on me and I forgot my concerns. Assou-Ekotto cleared the ball rubbishly and unfortunately for him it was picked up by RvP. He turned with it before smashing the ball in with his left foot. Well, obvs.


We didn’t really want half time, which makes a change for us. We were so in the long lost groove that having fifteen minutes off could have really knocked us sidewards. Fortunately, no such knocking was to occur. Harry Redknapp brought on van der Vaart (*makes hateful face*) and Sandro in an attempt to cork up his midfield, but we still looked the better team from kick off.

Rosicky’s first goal since he was six came in the 50th minute to put us ahead for the first time ever. He looked so, so happy to have finally scored again and what a match for him to have chosen to do it in. Oddly enough, I think the second goal was celebrated more emphatically by the fans than the third one. The third just seemed so very obvious that it was maybe less of a surprise.

Anyway, completing the rout was poor old Theo. He had such a tough time of it in the first half. Obviously, because there wasn’t much else to have a go at, the home support got criticised for their abuse of Theo Walcott. Well, you know what, I was there and yes, people were getting annoyed. However, I’m quite certain that most of the grumbling came from fans making “WHY DID YOU DO THAT, THEO!” noises than giving him any actual abuse. Lord knows, I said “WHY DID YOU DO THAT, THEO!” enough times in that first half. Most of us wanted him off at half time which just goes to show how little we really know when compared with how much we think we do. He was a changed man afterwards, and good for him. Because we’re Arsenal, the fourth meant we were still a little nervy as, let’s be honest, we’ve scored four and still not won before. But Theo’s second and our final really brought on the celebration times. The manpile has been missed. Gibbs, understanding of the NLD as I said, seemed to go absolutely mental and I’m really annoyed I was too busy jumping and hugging to have taken a photo of it.

Also, just have a look at that goalkeeper. Oh, SZCZ.

We still had twenty minutes to go, but Spurs didn’t really threaten too much. They were really quite useless yesterday. There was a moment Robin took on their entire midfield and won. I don’t want to compare us to them, but their performance was usually the kind we put on in a match we’re guaranteed to win.


So, in all it was a much needed win which put us back to fourth. Maybe only for a while, as we still have to face Liverpool at Anfield next week, but it’s a good start. My day of brilliance was completed by heading off to the Tollington to meet some people I’ve met before (@10akhil, @wolvenal, etc) and to meet some I’ve never met before (@oranje_sky and @TheSquidBoyLike). Yesterday, by the way, was the first NLD (or indeed match at the Emirates) for Jess (@oranje_sky) who was over from Canada to watch it. Who’s up for hiding her passport?

We also spotted this young Gooner on his way out of the match.


Jenkinson and his dad (I assume) plus what looked like about fifteen boys in the back stopped at the traffic lights and were still there after the lights had gone green. As they drove off, he looked SO happy. Apparently this time last year he watched the derby at the Emirates as a fan. This year he got to come on for fifteen minutes and stop the Spuds from changing the scoreline. What a story! Oh PS. Theo was in the car behind. Song also held up traffic for about ten minutes, stopping to sign everything.

Let’s leave it there then. A really terrible week followed by an absolutely brilliant afternoon against one of our most traditional of irritating foes. You can say what you like about this Arsenal team, but even in this, our season of gloom, they don’t half know how to give us days of the unexpectedly fan-bloody-tastic.

Well done Arsenal, and well done Arsene!


  1. Damien
    2062 days ago

    I felt comfortable of the win at around the 86th minute mark. Great win, lifts the gloom and pressure surrounding the club and manager. (People leave out the previous victories in the league).

    Suddenly the spuds are in sight.


  2. Irishgray
    2062 days ago

    Sian – What a day, what a game, what a team and what a bloody hangover!!! I will be walking around with a stupid grin plastered on my face for the next few days because of this. There is nothing like coming from behind to thrash the Spuds :) . Great blog as ever keep it up and love the photos!!


  3. Treez
    2062 days ago

    That was a fine blog about one of the finest matches I’ve watched at the Ems, made more so because of who we were playing.
    I’ve really enjoyed the Spuds expecting to be abused and derided today – I’ve not mentioned the game – it seems as if in some wierd masochistic way they want to be. Well bad luck Spuds. We’re bigger than that, ‘cos we are GOONERS.

    PS My laugh out loud moment was the ‘ugly cowboy builder’. Priceless!


  4. jgrant
    2062 days ago

    I actually overslept and missed the first goal.

    That is how much I, a staunch Arsenal fan had tried to make the game unimportant in my mind. A coping mechanism to deal with seemingly likely disappointment…who am I fooling though.

    What made me not too sad, even at 2-nil down was that unlike Milan away, the boys were trying hard…even Theo who was frustrating then was trying hard (unlike Milan away) and I felt except the football gods really wanted to take a huge piss on us, we had goals in us to get back into the game (yes once again, unlike Milan away).

    The commitment of the players remained, the goals came… and we have sweet sweet revenge for what we let happen same fixture last year.

    If only the guys can play this committed, the squad is not actually that bad you know… lets hope this same Arsenal turns up next weekend and not the…you guessed it, Milan away (eeeww) one.

    In summary, its nice to see my twitter crush happy again


  5. Daniel
    2062 days ago

    Nothing I love more on the blogoshpere than a happy Sian blog about a fantastic Arsenal result… The team really know how to gun* you on.

    Marvellous result from a team who are, frankly, shortening and then extending my life expentancy more times than I’d like to think about this season. I’d like to start a new song that goes “can we watch you every week?” because frankly I don’t recognise this team vs. the one we saw at Milan or Sunderland.

    I think my favourite moment of the game has to be Rosicky’s goal (first since he was six LOL). The way he carried on his run was the mark of a man who wears that cannon with such a great deal of pride. He’s had his fair amount of bad injury luck and bad treatment from fans over the last few years – I’m no angel, having probably wondered about his future with us before while my brother appears convinced he was on crack – but he has kept on keeping on for us. He’s never talked shit in the press and never complained about having to work and work his way back in… he’s just… done it. And Arsene has stuck with him. Now he appears to be repaying the faith Wenger has had in him all these years. People talk about man-management, but the smile on his face yesterday just said it all… I would have liked to have seen another Wenger hug there, Tomas deserved it. Brilliant.

    I love these players, they are capable of so much. Hopefully we can kick on from here (how often have we said that?) and keep moving on up. :)

    *That works for me.


  6. Cristina0ana
    2062 days ago

    I am all for kidnapping Jess and force her to go to every game. I think she won’t mind


  7. vaders_grandfather
    2062 days ago

    Good evening everyone,

    What a match, what a game. Everything that can be said has been said.

    I’m sure we all scoured the internet and watched the highlight reels of yesterday’s slaughter over and over again. I’ve never seen ‘arry reach Twitchcon five before and what a sight it was to behold.

    A big thank you to all the Supporters at The Emirates.

    And an even bigger Thank You to The Arsenal.

    All I know is winners don’t have tiny cocks.

    That is all.


  8. Gf60
    2062 days ago

    Smashing blog Sian. Thanks. Reliving it all over again!


  9. TrueGooner
    2062 days ago

    Happy 10 Arseblog


  10. UncleK
    2062 days ago

    Lovely blog,Siany.A brilliant piece to mark a day we’ll all remember.
    In the immortal words of Ray Parlour on TalkShite…FENTESTIC!!


  11. Alan
    2062 days ago

    About time the Boys were up to your standard, Siany. Brilliant blog about a fantastic afternoon. Must go and watch the match again…


    • UncleK
      2061 days ago

      What d’you reckon the score will be ?


    2062 days ago

    Brilliant Blog Sian.. Very well written. Still buzzing from yesterday, bring on Liverpool. Regards from the Highlands of Scotland. A.T.I.D COYG


  13. Girl Gunner
    2061 days ago

    Oh what an amazing game :) I wish every game was like Sunday’s! spurs should watch as the gap narrows!
    Great blog sian :)


  14. Sonia
    2061 days ago

    Great blog as always!! Havnt stopped grinning since Sunday! Keep up the good work. 


  15. 1NilToTheArsenal
    2061 days ago

    Brill blog for brill derby. I’ll be enjoying this one for ages to come, but here’s hoping we get another joyous, witty and heartwarming post after our trip to Anfield (no pressure…)


  16. Tricia
    2061 days ago

    Fantastic title! Great post. I think one of the best things about this match was the names of our goalscorers. We spread out the wealth and didn’t rely solely on RvP for the goals. Also, that Szczesny photo is one of the greatest photos of life.


  17. Alex
    2059 days ago

    Wojciech Szczesny in that picture should be the incentive to ballboy or ballgirl at the Emirates :) Or maybe even the advertisement!

    What a guy, and what a blog post Siany, well in Ms.


  18. Irishgray
    2056 days ago

    AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!! Silly Scousers! You would imagine by now they would have figured out that just because you spend $50 million on a striker doesn’t mean you will get a good one. Just ask the Chavs! RVP, take a bow son, take a bow :)


  19. irishgray
    2055 days ago

    Hmmmmmm……looks like Siany is going to keep us waiting until Monday for our next fix. :D Not a problem as I have a feeling it will be a good one. That must have been some hangover you had Sian!!


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