So, in the end we bounced out of SJP after a superb result vs. Chelsea, the best side in this country, by a country mile. As we quaffed our celebratory ale, we knew we’d achieved that excellent result against the odds, 10 men for 15 minutes + stoppage time, a 13 year old in goal for the 2nd half and some of who would be our first team players unavailable. It was a nice feeling and a result to enjoy.
But then on the Sunday, hangover at it’s throbbing, worst, I suddenly thought back to when I typed this out last week, when I was a bit pissed off that we’d flung away points vs. Non entity sides like West Ham and Burnley. In the end, we’d have taken 4 points from those 3 fixtures, but I bet we’d have expected West Ham (Draw), Burnley (Win) and Chelsea (defeat), in the end we got none of those.
So I have decided to classify Newcastle United (better put “Football Club” in there as I’v heard Liverpool “Football Club” do that – a lot) as ‘Not good enough to beat the teams we’re supposed to beat, but (sometimes) daft enough to beat the team’s we’re not.’ Now that’s copyright protected and you have to buy me a pint of Birra Moretti every time you want to use it, but it’s the fucking truth. How many games have we fucked up against shit, stupid teams that we should be annihilating? – Alright, stop counting them all. But then cast your mind over the victories where we were complete outsiders going into the games (you can probably exclude some of the Keegan years here as for a while we were actually better than your Liverpool’s, Chelsea’s Tottenham’s and Man City’s. But you get my drift? George Reilly’s header vs Liverpool in ’85. Goddard & Roeder vs. Man Utd in ’87. Roeder again, the season after. Gazza and Mirandinha at Nottingham Forest, in ’87, Mirandinha & Hendrie at Anfield in ’88. These were all at a time when the best we could possible manage was an 8th place finish. But even now, use the recent wins vs. Chelsea, last season at Old Trafford and Carroll’s header down at Arsenal. There are plenty others too.
So with all that going on, is it any wonder that United drive us absolutely fucking mental with their unpredictability……. Unless of course it’s some sort of Championship/cup final decider, then of course we capitulate, but again, that’s part of my point. These are the games we’re ‘supposed to lose.’
So, we’re now off to Arsenal, where the natives are a bit restless, which, frankly, is absurd, and 100% earns them The Viz character title of ‘Spolit Bastard’**
I mean, ho’way man.
“But we should be doing better” – Champion’s League, every year – Fuck off
“But we haven’t won a cup since…… “ – Oh, fucking, May 2014 – Fuck off.
“But we don’t spend any money” – Ozil £42.5m – Fuck off.
“But we should spend even more” – Alexis Sanchez £32m – Fuck off.
Yes, Arsenal fans, can royally, go and get fucked with their shit patter about Wenger not being good enough. How they must hanker for Bruce Rioch in the dug out.
Arsenal are currently 6th (they haven’t exactly dropped off the bottom of the coupon) and sit 4 points behind 4th place West Ham. They’ve lost only once at home in the league this season, and that was vs. Man Utd (1-2). They drew with Spurs, Man City and Hull and beat Palace, Burnley and Southampton.
Alexis Sanchez has 14 goals already. Wilshere, Walcott and Ozil should all miss this one with doubts over Arteta, Monreal and Kocielny. Callum Chambers is suspended.
Hmmm, Krul and Elliot both out until the New Year, so Alnwick and Woodman are our options in between the sticks. Very best of luck to both of them!!
Steven Taylor’s double yellow card see’s him miss this one through suspension. The skipper is an injury concern going into this one too. Leaving Janmaat, Dummett, Williamson, Haidara to pick themselves, if the Capo doesn’t make it.
They’re likely to be up against Sanchez, Wellbeck, Giroud and/or Podolski at some point.
Sissoko has his 2nd suspension in a week, Abeid missed Chelsea last week with a foot problem. Aarons is still not ready to return, so Cabella, Tiote, Colback, Anita, Ameobi, Gouffran are likely to be the options for midfield. Tiote and Colback can provide a wall in front of the back 4, but we’ll miss Sissoko’s power. Anita is an option, if lightweight, Cabella could play behind the striker as the 3rd central midfield play maker. Maybe with the Gunners being a passing team, PArdew will favour the Dutchman in the middle. Of equal importance is the support given to the full backs from our wingers given Debuchy’s and Gibb’s persistence in bombing forward.
Any selection of Rosicky, Flamini, Ramsey, Cazorla, Oxtail-Soup will still prove a tough test for our lot
Cisse still has this ongoing knee problem which seems to suggest he won’t be playing too many full matches for a while. Riviere is available again and Perez is still showing no signs of needing a break. Ferreyra is a head scratcher mind. Is he Xisco-lite??
Ryan Taylor – Knee – No return date
Obertan – Knee – No return date
Santon – Hamstring – No return date
Elliot – Thigh – January 2015
Krul – Ankle – January 2015
De Jong – January 2015
Abeid – Foot – Doubtful
Coloccini – Calf – Doubtful
Aarons – Hamstring – Next Week
Good – Groin – No return date
Steven Taylor – 1 game
Sissoko – 1 game
Possible Team (4-2-3-1)
1.Alnwick: 2. Janmaat, 5. Williamson, 6. Dummett, 3. Haidara: 8. Colback, 4. Tiote, 7.Cabella: 10.Anita: 11. Ameobi 9. Perez
Woodman, Streete, Satka, Armstrong, Riviere, Gouffran, Cisse
Referee: Lee Mason
League History at The Gunners
1984/85:Lost 0-2, United had made a perfect start to our return to the top flight, winning 3 out of 3. But our trip to Highbury brought our first defeat. Viv Anderson and Brian Talbot on target for the hosts Attendance, 37,078
1985/86:Drew 0-0, United had made a satisfactory start to the campaign but had stuttered at home to Barnsley in the milk cup to a 0-0 first leg draw. Most feared a defeat in North Londn, but United returned home with a useful point, with Allinson, Rocastle, Nicholas, Woodcock, Rix et al left frustrated. Attendance, 24,108
1986/87:Won 1-0, United were scrapping around for any points we could find near the bottom of Division One, but, Paul ‘Sarge’ Goddard was on a hot streak for us. Goddard breached The Gunner’s back four with a superb, winner which put a vital 3 points on the board. Attendance, 17,353
1987/88: Drew 1-1, Remarkably we’d finish only 2 places behind Arsenal , with us in 8th and them in 6th, Goddard struck again with another screamer, not until after Gascoigne had missed a penalty, whilst Perry Groves notched for the hosts as we responded to a 1-0 defeat at Everton the week before. Attendance, 25,889
1988/89: Lost 0-1 A different story this time around. Arsenal were to finish champions whilst we finished rank, bottom. Brian Marwood settled this one. Attendance, 38,023
1993/94: Lost 1-2 We were very quickly getting to grips with what the Premier League was all about. Beardsley and Cole were striking up a formidable partnership, but Arsenal had their own in Alan Smith and Ian Wright. They both notched for the hosts, whilst Beardsley struck for us. We would actually finish 1 place ahead of them, in 3rd and clinch a UEFA cup spot. Attendance, 36,091
1994/95: Won 3-2 We were on a massive high having just stuffed Royal Antwerp (away) 5-0 on our return to Europe. Next up was a difficult trip to Highbury, but Keegan’s heroes bagged the points with a brace from Pedro (maybe 1 was an OG) and another from Ruel Fox. Tony Adams had struck for the hosts and Ian Wright set up a Grandstand finish with their second with time running out. Attendance, 36,819
1995/96: Lost 0-2 This was the closest we will ever come to winning the league in my life time. When all these moaning, Arsenal twats, moan about having not won a cup for a handful of years and start hammering Wenger, they have no idea how fucking pathetic they look and sound. They sound like cunts, let’s be honest. They’d already cheated/kicked us out of the League cup, don’t be fooled, when they talk of “The Arsenal Way”, the Arsenal way was a snide, dirty way and they’d booted Ginola all over the park. The pack of cunts did us again in the league as the wheels came off our title campaign!! Attendance, 38,271
1996/97: Won 1-0 A sweet victory that no one seen coming. Kenny Dalglish was luring us in to a false sense of security by taking us on a charge to 2nd place and Champion’s League qualification, whilst utilising our flair attacking players. This included a Robbie Elliott inspired win at Highbury, with 10 men after “Dizzy” Gillespie received his marching orders. Attendance, 38,179
1997/98: Lost 1-3 Our league campaign was a fucking disaster. Dalglish had had a whack on the head and filled our squad with a heap of shit. We knew before we went out that we’d get slaughtered here, and we duly did. Anelka got 2, Veiria got 1 whilst Barton pulled one back for us.Attendance, 38,102
1998/99: Lost 0-3 Having dispensed with the services of one knacker, we handed the team over to another. Gullit had promised sexy football, but this was anything but. Down to 10 men again, after Dabizas saw red, we got humped by 3, with Bergkamp our tormentor. Attendance, 38,102
1999/00: Drew 0-0 Bobby Robson’s tactical genius saw us set up for a point with a patched up side. John Karelese and Franck Dumas were outstanding. Attendance, 38,106
2000/01: Lost 0-5 The less said the better about this one, but you kow, when Ray Parlour is coring a hat trick, that actually, it’s best just to write the day off and get pissed!!. Attendance, 38,052
2001/02: Won 3-1 A fucking fantastic night, with the hosts acting like the outright cunts that they are. Robert Pires had put them 1-0 up but Graeme Poll made a decision to send off Ray Parlour, probably for scoring a hat trick against us the previous year, which to be honest, seems fair enough to me. Anyhow, we’d equalise through Andy O’Brien with what might have been our last ‘proper’ goal from a corner, but Ashley *spit* Cole, the little cheating cunt, then got Bellamy sent off, which I’v still never forgiven the twat for. I think when people see me raging at the dickhead, they think it’s cos everyone hates him for nobbing some lass behind Cheryl Cole’s back, well…. it’s got nowt to do with that, but I hate the shithouse!! Anyway……. Enter Laurent Robert…… He torched the bastards and won a penalty for Shearer to convert and then scored himself. Beautiful, absolutely beautiful. Thierry Henry left the field trying to stop bitter, tears flooding down his face, whilst Wenger’s was even more repugnant than normal. Attendance, 38,012
2002/03: Lost 0-1 Normal service resumed, a home win, Sylvain Wiltord with the winner. Attendance, 38,121
2003/04: Lost 2-3 A game moved to a Friday night, which meant I got so drunk that I couldn’t remember a thing about it. Anyway, Bernard had briefly got us back on level terms but Henry would score from the penalty spot (his 2nd of the night) just moments later to seal defeat. Robert had restored parity earlier but Silva then notched for the hosts. Attendance, 38,112
2004/05: Lost 0-1 Played out in farcical circumstances with Bellamy feigning injury and Souness being a dick, we lost a game 1-0 with Bergkamp on target. Attendance, 38,137
2005/06: Lost 0-2 We were robbed. We were playing well and holding our own until Steve Bennett sent off Jenas which was a disgraceful decision. After that, Arsenal won it, but not without getting a penalty first. Henry scored it and the biggest arsehole on the planet (van Persie) added a 2nd.. Attendance, 38,072
2006/07: Drew 1-1 Dyer had us 1-0 up after 30 minutes, but Henry scored a superb free kick to level. Attendance, 60,058
2007/08: Lost 0-3 Our second mauling to these in 5 days. Having been dumped out of the FA cup 3-0, they repeated the scoreline in the league. Adebayor, Flamini, Fabregas!!! . Attendance, 60,127
2008/09: Lost 0-3 Fuck the score, it had become apparent that all was not well with Keegan and the board!! Worse was to follow, much worse He’d never be seen in a Newcastle dug out again!!. Attendance, 60,067
2010/11: Won 1-0 A after thrashing the mackems 5-1 we went to Arsenal and beat them as well, with Andy Carroll nodding in the winner. Koscielny was sent off late on too. Lovely stuff. Attendance, 60,059
2011/12: Lost 1-2 This game is remembered for 2 things. Ben Arfa’s wicked goal and van Persie acting like the biggest prick you will ever see after their late winner. It became apparent from this day, that Robin van Persie was not only a striker, but also the referee. I’d love to kick him on the face! Attendance, 60,095
2012/13: Lost 7-3 There is so much to hate about Arsenal. Their loathsome fan’s sense of entitlement is just one, but it’s not hard to see where it comes from. The club itself have one too. It conveniently suited them to have their Boxing Day fixture postponed, tube service preventing West ham getting to Arsenal….. Aye, I know!!! It didn’t stop other London teams from playing, just these. So whilst the rest of the country were embarking on their busy Xmas fixture list, Arsenal sat with their feet up and duly dispatched us, tearing us to shreds in the latter stages of the game, once our legs had gone. Marveaux’s pass for Demba Ba’s last ever Newcastle goal was simply, superb. Attendance, 60,087
2013/14: Lost 0-3. Part of ‘that’ awful run. Best off forgotten. Attendance, 60,023
Gooner – click here
Probably only Szczesny isn’t a danger man
Arsenal 2-0 Newcastle United
** In light of my earlier ‘copyright’ craic, this is obviously a bit cheeky – Ed, pay the man!!
Ed: Pfft. Yee’ll be lucky!
CHRIS BETTS – Follow Chris at @tfbettsy1892