Vital Arsenal Interviews ........ LittleDutch
Ok I realise this one is a bit of a kop-out as LD is always airing his views on the site, but there's no denying his Goonerness and always has an interesting tale or two :)
1) Have long have you been an Arsenal fan?
Since 1990, when I was six.
2) What (or who) made you start supporting our glorious club?
My Mum's a T*ttenham fan, I think I wanted to piss her off! My first memories were watching the Big Match. Believe it or not, bearing in mind this was the Graham era, it was the fact that I began playing as a winger and Arsenal had flair wide players like Limpar, Rocastle and Merson so I went with them. No surprise perhaps that in the mid 90s I converted to centre back!
3) What was the first live game you attended?
Arsenal v Leeds at Highbury in March 1992. Lee Chapman scored for Leeds in a 1-1 draw, which annoyed the Highbury faithful! I got a season ticket in the 92-93 season and have missed very few games since.
4) What has been the greatest moment of your Arsenal supporting life?
That's a very tough one, I've been fortunate enough to have been at the San Siro twice, the Bernebeu, WHL 04 and Old Trafford 02. The best match was when I was at Old Trafford in 2002, it was a Wednesday night and I was about a week away from my first A Level exam. My English teacher was a Gooner, so I obviously couldn't keep my reason for bunking off on that Wednesday a secret. Funnily enough, I never did get in trouble for that! But as one adrenaline busting moment, mad Jens' save in Villarreal. We had such a horrible time getting my ticket sorted, the flight was massively delayed and we only just made the game. Arsenal played appallingly badly, but in that one moment I literally lost myself. It still gives me goosebumps thinking about it.
5) And the worst?
Funnily enough the CL Final doesn't come close to figuring. Journies back from Cardiff in 2001 and Bolton in 2003 weren't much fun, but it has to be the 1995 Cup Winners' Cup Final defeat to Real Zaragoza. An ex T*ttenham player scoring from forty yards in the last minute of a European Final takes some beating. That said, Eduardo's injury honestly shook me badly.
6) Who, in your opinion, is the best player to pull on the famous red and white strip?
In terms of talent, I'd plump for Henry just over Bergkamp, there was nothing that man couldn't do. But I feel he underperformed in his last two years at the club. For all round contribution Vieira and Adams took the club to new heights over a long period of time. But older family members would be quick to point out the likes of Alex James, Liam Brady and Frank McLintock.
7) If you could go back in time and go to any Arsenal match in history, which would it be?
May 26th 1989 without a doubt. What is so frustrating was that it was in my life time, the day of my 5th birthday in fact. But I was too young to be involved in that awesome experience. I also wouldn't have minded being at Highbury for the Anderlecht game at Highbury in 1970.
8) Whats the funniest thing you've ever seen or heard concerning Arsenal?
Darren Bent powering Spuds in to the Top 4 at our expense was pretty funny, especially when he missed that sitter against us at the Lane. But an unsubstantiated rumour concerning our F.A. Cup win at Old Trafford in 2003. Apparently, Ferguson turned to Beckham and said, 'Ashley Cole made a right c*** of you today!' To which Beckham allegedly replied, 'well Arsene Wenger made an even bigger c*** of you!' No idea if it's true, but I'd really like to believe it is!
9) What are your realistic hopes for the coming season?
We can no longer talk of potential. I think we can win the League and I'm convinced we're going to as well.
10) And finally, if you could invite 4 people connected to Arsenal, living or dead, to a dinner party, who would they be?
Henry Norris- an undeniable pivot in our history and a seemingly very interesting chap- if not necessarily a nice one.
Herbert Chapman- probably the greatest figurehead in our history and an innovative man full of revolutionary ideas. Also fought off the scepticism of contemporary conservatives.
Arsene Wenger- no need to explain this one.
Jens Lehmann- I really enjoy arguing!