How Much Negativity Can One Arsenal Supporter Take?

Don’t ask me why, but Myles Palmer and his blog, Arsenal News Review, continue to irritate the hell out of me. It’s not just his ultra-negative attitude, Arsenal Action has that on most days and I don’t find that nearly as irritating. What annoys me most are his repeated contradictions and, especially, the pompous air of authority with which he attempts to pass off his ramblings.

The Arsenal blogosphere is full of negativity, some justified some not, but most Arsenal bloggers understand their “role.” They are people sharing their opinions on the club they love and follow. Perhaps, because he wrote a biography of Arsene Wenger, Palmer seems to consider himself some kind of authority on the club and Wenger. As if following Wenger around has given him more insight into football tactics and economics than the man he was following. Yet, it seems the experience, for whatever reason, turned him very bitter, as evidenced in the overly personal way he attacks and criticizes the club and manager.

Only Myles Palmer could turn a 6-1 win at Everton into something negative. In a response to a letter from a reader on his website today, he wrote this:

This 4-3-3 is too new to judge. Let’s see what happens in the first 10 games.

Yet on the same day, in his “match report,” he wrote:

In truth, this very strange event was two games.

A competitive game before the first goal  in 26 minutes, a walkover after Denilson scored.

The opening period showed that 4-3-3 does not suit Arsenal’s players. For 26 minutes Arshavin was lost and wasted on the left, van Persie never went in the box, where Bendtener couldn’t be because he was stuck on the right side, where he did OK because he’s a decent footballer

Denilson isn’t much cop going forward. He’s a reliable continuity player, not a¬† creative player. Going forward, he was clueless in the first 25. Most of¬†his passes were backwards and sideways. 4-3-3 does not suit him either, to be fair…

After that, Everton were a shambles. The next five goals were all sucker punches. Everton had no midfield, a static defence, and no attack till Saha came on to score an injury time consolation when they were 6-0 down.

Myles wants to make the outrageous, and “authoritative,” statement that the 4-3-3 doesn’t work. After one match, not ten. In fact, after 25 minutes. He is saying the 4-3-3 doesn’t work because it took the Arsenal 26 minutes to score away to Everton and because none of those six goals happened to come from the front three. But all three were directly involved in five of the six goals -the one being the goal at the end of Fabregas’s 45m run.Van Persie led the counterattack that gave Fabregas his second goal, and drew the foul with his back to goal that led to Gallas’s goal. Bendtner drew the foul that led to Vermaelen’s goal and also held the ball up to find Fabregas in a good spot outside the box leading to Denilson’s goal and Arshavin worked to create space in the box for his chip which Eduardo finished.

This is all symptomatic of Palmer’s outlook but also that of a minority of Arsenal supporters that are disproportionately visible. Even in a 6-1 win at Everton, his headline and the thrust of his entire article is what was wrong with Arsenal. Were Everton a shambles? Sure they were, but what we saw from Arsenal was something different. We saw Arsenal not only create chances but finish them and we saw them dominate in the air on both ends. A few important positives you would think especially leading into a very important Champions League Playoff with Celtic today.

Two days earlier, this was his entire blog post:

Nobody will be signed till Arsenal eliminate Celtic on August 26.

Matuidi, Hangeland and Chamakh are still the targets.

Nothing will happen till the Celtic result is in the bag.

Has the Arsenal Property Company taken the £40 million from Toure & Adebayor? Looks that way.

Wenger will take the £20m from the Champions League place and spend it on three players.

Last summer, he bought Nasri the day after he sold Hleb.

If Arsenal lost to Celtic, their season would be over.

His arrogance is unparalleled in the Arsenal blogosphere but his negativity is not. “If Arsenal lost to Celtic, their season would be over.” A little dramatic? I wonder if he phoned the club to let them know they can save the team’s travel costs especially considering their ultra-precarious financial state, as interpreted by Palmer.

I should give him credit here for his slyness… Wenger has regularly held out until the final hours of the deadline in an attempt to secure the best possible deal. Now, if Arsenal do beat Celtic, and Wenger does wait until the deadline as usual, Palmer can, and most assuredly will, write about how he was right all along. And this despite writing two weeks ago in an article entitled, “Wenger, Gazidis might wait till midnight on August 31”:

I realised that Wenger and Gazidis are waiting to get better value at the end of the transfer window.

Really, Myles? But didn’t you write before that the club was broke and waiting to see if we beat Celtic and secure the Champions League money. Anyone who knows Arsene Wenger knows that he has no problem taking transfers right to the wire. Finally, in his reply letter, which somehow turns into a brief and not very authentic self-effacing autobiography, Palmer claims:

…when I was eighteen, my dad said, “With a little humility, you’ll go a long way.” I haven’t gone a long way… So I am a failure in my own eyes and always will be. But I’m quite a happy failure because I’ve been lucky in my private life… To me, football is just something we talk about. It is the most important unimportant thing in the world.

Perhaps, Palmer’s father was right and the reason he is “a failure” is because has lacked even that little bit of humility. While this article is directly referencing Myles Palmer and ANR’s negative and contradictory nature, it really is a response to the negativity generated in blogs, the media, and the stands, that seems to hover over the club like an ominous, dark cloud everywhere they go.

What Is Your Arsenal Pledge? (And Videos From Everton)

Above is Arsenal’s new Nike commercial featuring Cesc Fabregas, Denilson, Eduardo, Kieran Gibbs, Andrei Arshavin, Nicklas Bendtner, and even Jack Wilshere. Both Bendy and I are getting in on the action:

Bendy’s Pledge: To sing for 90 minutes every match!

ArsenalStation’s Pledge: To not miss one single second of one match this season. No matter what!

What’s your Arsenal pledge? Post it in the comments section.


To help give you a feel for the atmosphere at the Everton match, a friend of Arsenal Station who made the trip all the way from America via Israel has graciously let us use some of the footage he took of the end of the match, the team clapping the away supporters, and the supporters march out of the ground: