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Found 11 results

  1. Our very own ‘Nam In contemporary American folklore, Vietnam (The ‘Nam) has a unique place. Many soldiers came back traumatised or got attacked for having been there in the first place. It was an unpopular war and the ‘Nam has a grim place in American folk memory. But we here at Arsenal have our own ‘Nam – Totten-Nam! But as we will see here, In contrast to the American one, they have a happy place in our folk memory. And why? Because they were mostly crap and we flew high above them. I will take a look at the 90’s this time and our position versus London clubs and the ‘Nam. It is good re
  2. Our keeper as hero and villain? I don't think so. 1994-95 The Football Stewart Houston had a tough task Last time I covered the off field antics which led to George Graham being removed in February. He lost his credibility, his job, and his (future)statue. And the team were poor, understandably. I would judge a manager on how well they extract performances from their team. If they have the best team, they should win. If another team does it like Arsenal in the double without the best team under Bertie Mee, it is a great achievement. Lik
  3. The Dark Side takes over 1994-95 Last week I wrote about how we won the European Cupwinners Cup on May the Fourth. I, and many other Gooners were hoping that we have disturbed the force that is Manchester United and are ready to be Arsenal again. George Graham could surely now come up with the tactics to hit us into warp drive. We had the players, we could put out an entire England team and it would be nearly as good as the actual one. We bought Stefan Schwarz, John Hartson, Chris Kimomya and Glenn Helder. Surely Darth Vader (Alex Ferguson) couldn’t stop us now? Certainly Man
  4. 1992-93 part 1 The Invention of football 2 big things happened. One was the invention of football by Sky. The new Premier League was launched amidst the razzamatazz of a world event. Now there would be lots of live football, strange time slots such as Sunday football, Monday football, even Friday football. There would be long football analysis shows, teams of pundits at the ready to spout partisan views dressed up as commentary. All sorts of camera angles and intrusions into the world of professional football. Sky would eventually make a packet selling these rights to every round of
  5. The 80’s Were we Better? My first full decade as an Arsenal supporter was the 70’s. It was an amazing time but a rollercoaster. We flirted with relegation, we got to many cup finals and won the impossible double. We had an astonishing Irish presence that is unlikely ever to be achieved again at any English club, and so many legends were of this time. Charlie George, John Radford, Frank Mclintock, Bob Wilson, Terry Neill, Don Howe, Alan Ball, our longest serving player, David O’Leary (why is there no statue?) and our sublime magician, Liam Brady were among the names and in fact almos
  6. Why couldn’t we win all our matches? 1990-91 Invincible? It was considered unachievable in the modern game, because English football was so competitive. Every year low teams beat top teams, not to mention that you had to beat the top teams as well. Of course you could draw, but if you drew every match you are flirting with relegation. Once 3 points for a win came in in 1981, they became they only real currency to trade in. George Graham never made any bold prediction like Arsene Wenger did, but if you examine what Wenger actually said was that no top manager ever plans to draw and no
  7. 1989-90 Never the Big Boss? Overachievement was the overriding characteristic of every team we had while I was a younger supporter. When we won trophies, few people regarded us as the best in the land. But there was a feeling about the George Graham time, that we were very close to this dream. I knew we had been the greatest back in the day, but now we had to overachieve to win something. I wanted a spell of dominance, a sniff of power, the feeling that we could look at the rest and say, we can beat them, send them home crying because we were the Arsenal. But now we had come t
  8. By Source (WP:NFCC#4), Fair use, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=50723666 1987-88 The Grandmaster Makes his Moves I always believed that George Graham was a chess player as a manager. I reckon he felt that if he can have an equal team, then he can make them work to win. So today, I am not going to talk so much about the matches as about his manoeuvering players into the positions that he wanted. He had a top goalkeeper in John Lukic, (although even he was eventually displaced by David Seaman), but he was eclipsed by Peter Shilton for England. Nigel Winterburn came for
  9. George Graham lays down a marker Heroes appearing under Graham 1986-87 How to write about George Graham’s first season in charge? It was a tumultuous time with no single thread to tie it all together. But I will give it a go. The most important thing is that he had done wonders at Millwall, who were jumping up the divisions. They were well drilled and that became obvious fairly quickly, that Arsenal would be the same. He knew what he wanted and players came in from inside and out. Some only diehard Arsenal fans will remember, others became legends, still talked about today. Unfo
  10. What’s the missing number in this sequence 4, 12, _, 5? Well, we will get to it at some point. As we saw last time in 1969-70 we finished 12th and the only highlight of the year was winning the InterCities Fairs cup, now the Europa League. It was very difficult to feel optimistic. A climb up the table though, surely was necessary. Strangely enough, my young mind really hated the idea of relegation. Arsenal had never been relegated and I wanted that to continue, at least. No team though, had ever done the double in the 20th century, except, amazingly, the Spuds in 1961. They had a mag
  11. The Creation of a Gooner part 2 Thanks for the encouraging comments last time. I was worried that going back so far would put people off, but it seems Gooners liked my stroll down memory lane. So, I will continue, as was my plan, with a short series of my life with the Arsenal. Last time, I didn’t write about players, and I only mentioned Roger Smart scoring the first goal for Swindon. This was deliberate as it wasn’t the players that attracted me to Arsenal but the way they kept trying to play football, trying always to win that made me switch sides during the match. But from then o
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