The Great Dane in happier times!
I enjoy giving young Gooner writers a platform, if they have a good idea and can write too, so a warm 1ND2OU welcome to William Sparks. A confident 17 year Arsenal fan from Glasgow hoping to come to London to be closer to his beloved Arsenal when he goes to University Known to many of you on twitter as @LittleWillAFC today Will has written a thought provoking piece on the self proclaimed ‘Great Dane,’ the one and only NB52…..
It was a cold wintery afternoon at The Emirates, and the game between fierce north London rivals Arsenal and Tottenham was deadlocked at 81 minutes into the game. Arsene Wenger, not renowned for his bold substitutions began to prepare one. The substitutes name was Nicklas Bendtner, an 18 year old Danish centre-forward purchased from Copenhagen in 2004. He made his way on to field, strode in to the box, leaped above Teemu Tainio like a salmon, and the resulting winner was written into Emirates folk lore for the rest of our Arsenal supporting lives.
It should have been the start of a love affair with the Gunner faithful.
Now, the scene I have tried to set in the opening paragraph makes it seem like I was introducing someone who was going on to become young world player of the year, unfortunately I wasn’t. I’m introducing Nicklas Bendtner, a player who is now 25, and currently on loan at Italian champions Juventus. He’s failed to score in any of the 9 games he’s played in at present and in December his season took an almighty blow as he got injured in a Serie A game against Calgari, and was ruled out for the rest of the season. Continue reading
Only player to 20 in England so far in 2012/13
I wrote a blog a few weeks back suggesting we invest our pot of cash in proven Premier League talent to hit the ground running next season. Some agreed and some did not and many thought my striker target Lukaku would not be available at a price we would pay. He may not be and it may well be a pipe dream but the more common criticism of my logic in suggesting the young Belgian as a target to challenge or support Giroud and Walcott, was that he is not proven. This and the usual ‘We need a 20 goal a season man.’ In fact I am being kind as many tell me we need a 30 goal season striker! Well sorry to be the one to burst your bubble and open your eyes, but they don’t actually exist guys, well not often. What I also find quite ironic is it seems to be the same readers who simultaneously want Wenger to spend millions on Jovetic a consistent 12-15 goal a season man?
Goal celebration seen once every 3 weeks?
This is not incidentally a criticism of Jovetic who looks a super player but he is a creator of opportunities or a second striker, a la Dennis, not a main striker. Of course this whole debate is far from simple as I would love us to have a two striker system and see a Jovetic style No.10 but we do not presently have that system and this blog is more about the constant Gooner demand for a 20/30 goal a season central striker. The majority seem to think Wenger’s task here is an easy one and his failure is done to lack of funds or lack of judgement. Continue reading
Today I am delighted to welcome a good pal of mine Jeremy Lebor to 1ND2OU. Jeremy is a frequent blogger for other sites and has been threatening to write for this one in a while. There is more about Jeremy who is a lawyer by profession and a twice published novelist as well. Might explain why finding time to write for me, when not discussing screenplay adaptations or appearing in court has been an issue. Anyway brilliant to have him here and I hope it will be the first of many collaborations. Watch this space….. over to JL for an amusing and insightful review of the past week
Despite the disappointment of exiting the Champions League at the Allianz Arena on Wednesday of last week, the 0-2 win actually had more of an effect on the Arsenal team for the remaining games of the season than perhaps supporters realise or are prepared to accept. Let’s not underestimate that Bayern are supposedly the ‘best’ team in Europe at present with a huge 20 point lead at the top of the Bundesligia, They had the stuffing knocked out of them in their own back yard! – Personally, I still feel Barcelona are at the forefront despite their own wavering’s and are a team you cannot right off at any cost, perhaps along with Real Madrid. Bayern best team in Europe… maybe in time when Pep Guardiola takes over the helm.
Arsenal went into the game with Bayern Munich, low on confidence having lost their previous game to arch rivals Tottenham, and as well as being annihilated at the Emirates by Bayern in the home leg of the Champions League tie. I was there, and like most, if not every Arsenal supporter, witnessed a very poor night for our team! – So with a victory that should not be underestimated, Arsenal had their pride restored – sort of!
With an enforced break upon us due to World Cup qualifiers, it was essential that the trip last Saturday to Swansea was a must win game. You don’t need to be a rocket scientist to work that one out! Continue reading
I am sure this week there are hundreds of blogs suggesting transfer targets, bemoaning those targets we have not signed and of course those screaming that we have no targets. 1 Nil Down 2 One up could happily join in and indeed is sorely tempted. In fact some of you will have noticed that even I have not been my usual irritatingly positive self of late. It is however deliberately because of this I will not enter the fray and add to the negative noise as I would surely do. No I am reverting to an idea for a blog that has been on the back burner for a few months. It has absolutely no relevance to the transfer window, our form, our midfield or defensive frailties, or our total lack of leadership or tactics. It is absurdly positive, cheerful, smile provoking and a welcome distraction I hope to the alternatives.
One of our main preoccupations as Arsenal fans is of course to continually berate those players who left us for greed and glory. How dare they? We slag them off continually particularly Adebayor, Nasri and of course Van Persie. We are divided on Fabregas and couldn’t really care about Clichy, although he was the last of the Invincibles. In fact the obsession you all have, and yes I do exclude myself, with RVP is quite frankly perturbing. The one player who asked to leave we still all tolerate or even like is Kolo but then we accept he hated Gallas so had to leave. We all get that sentiment don’t we? Part of the problem quite obviously is that most of them left close to home and have had immediate success and silverware. How very dare they? So who is the subject of my blog today? Who is the Gooner departed who has also enjoyed success that has gone under the radar and who to my knowledge we all think fondly of and smile when we say his name? EMMANUEL EBOUE! Continue reading
A sumptious finsish this season v Olympiacos
I am very fortunate today to welcome Martijn Stolze to ’1nildown2one up. Many will know him on twitter @Hahostolze but certainly as a regular writer for one of the top Arsenal blogs, Arsenal Vision. His piece on the ‘Double Pivote’ is one of the best blogs of the season.
Martijn lived in England for 4 years from ages 6 to 10 when he and his family returned to Holland. In this short time at the beginning of his football education he witnessed the 97/98 free flowing Arsenal with 2 Dutch superstars to the fore. The rest as they say is history. Today he will be making an extremely persuasive argument in support of Aaron Ramsey….
When it comes to twitter, the blogosphere and other social media, one thing always seems to surprise me. That is the lack of love and appreciation for what is genuinely one of the game’s brightest young talents, Aaron Ramsey. It isn’t just Arsenal fans that suffer from this, it is prevalent all over the world, as far as in the realms of Football Weekly, where for some reason Paul Doyle said that in our recent matches Ramsey has shown a lack of assertiveness. Far be it from me to judge Mr Doyle’s footballing knowledge but in recent games, certainly against City and West Ham, he has shown his battling qualities, determination and an ability to grab the game by the scruff of the neck. I am unsure where this lack of assertiveness presented itself. But then again, I am a big fan of our young Welshman and as such I feel compelled to defend him for as long as I can. So today’s piece, is my assessment of Aaron Ramsey, his past and his present, and how I think he will be a brilliant player for years to come.
Signed from right under Ferguson’s big red nose!