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The Negativity is Back

Yesterday I witnessed two very differing sides of the coin with regards to chivalry amongst Arsenal supporters. The positive side came minutes before kick off. One of our usual number was unable to attend the game and a ticket became free at the last minute. As we walked to the ground some five minutes before kick off, Rich decided he would give the ticket away for free to the person who looked the most eager. Rich spied a group of lads standing outside the ground and offered the ticket to a young lad from Cannes in the North West of Australia, over in this country for the first time, and gave him the ticket on the sole stipulation that he join us for a drink after the game. It was a very quaint moment, a young lad fromthe other side of the world in London for the first time, who chanced his luck of a ticket at the team he supported and got lucky simply by virtue of wearing an Arsenal shirt and looking eager. He'll be backpacking across mainland Europe by the time of our next home game. I like to think Rich gave him an excellent impression of English football fans, some two hours later, that would likely have been rendered fallacious testimony by around 40,000 idiots.

It was down to the serious stuff and the game started very slowly for the home side with Wigan as well organised as you would expect them to be. The first strike on anger came from Wigan, Valencia's drive from the edge of the box was deflected by Palacios, but not with quite enough venom to sufficiently wrongfoot Almunia. Arsenal would take the lead with their first real opportunity, Nasri's corner was cleared to the edge of the area, Fabregas helped the ball forward hopefully, Alex Song smuggled the ball serendipitously into the area and Adebayor was alive and aware to latch onto the ball and slot it beneath the sprawling figure of Kirkland. The goal should have relaxed Arsenal but yet another injury to Nasri, who was victim of a mistimed challenge by Palacios, saw Eboue come on on the left flank. With Velaand Wilshere still kicking their heels on the bench, you have to question whether the manager trusts his young players as much as he proports. I'm sure he would point to Eboue's greater experience, but that acknowledges the lack of it in our side. Again, if the manager is acknowledging that inbalance, you have to ask why he didn't address it in the summer.

From there on, our lack of naturalwidth made us easier for Wigan to contain and we largely had to revert to the long ball (I really wish Toure wouldn't insist on hoofing it every time he gets the ball). Though route one presented us with our next half chance, Almunia hit the ball long to Adebayor who won the flick on, van Persie produced a delightful backheel back to Adebayor on the edge of the box, but the ball wouldn't sit down for him and he volleyed it well over. The half toiled on thereafter, like a flickering candle struggling in a stiff breeze. But in first half injury time, the Gunners might have secured the result. The lively Denilson raced down the right flank and cut the ball back to the eighteen yard line and Adebayor hit a low drive which smacked the inside of the post via Kirkland's fingertips.

Wigan began the second half brighter, Arsenal's tentativeness was there for all to see. With results against the perceived lesser lights of the league less than impressive this season, the nerves took hold of Arsenal. Wigan might have capitalised when Heskey found himself with a free header from Ryan Taylor's cross, but he could only head the ball straight at Almunia. Sagna nearly caught Kirkland off guard with a front post flick on from a Fabregas corner which reignited the home side somewhat. Denilson won the ball back from Taylor on Arsenal's right and fed van Persie, by far Arsenal's most potent danger in the final third, he brilliantly twisted and shimmied in the box, releasing a glimmer of space for himself before firing a left foot shot that crept agonisingly wide. Arsenal threatened again a few moments later when Eboue fed Fabregas, who sent the ball wide to Denilson, the young Brazilian lined up from the right edge of the penalty box and hit a low exorset which again hit the inside of the post. Adebayor headed a Fabregas corner wide when he should have done better. He was then the benefactor of some good work from van Persie, who enabled Fabregas to put Adebayor through, but Kirkland was equal to his left footed effort. But Arsenal then shrank back into their shell, as the crowd heaped the pressure on them with their barracking, which further inhibited the team.

The Gunners were grateful for the heroics of Almunia on 74 minutes. Valencia hung in a threatening corner which Arsenal failed to clear, the ball broke to Melchiot on the six yard line and Almunia spread himself excellently to block. Credit due too to van Persie, who didn't make life easy for Melchiot. Arsenal created similar panic in the Wigan area when the ball scrambled to Sagna, who volleyed into the ground and over the bar. Looking at the chance again, it's difficult to fault Sagna's effort and correct his technique. The last ten minutes saw an edgy stadium, which in turn made for an edgy team. Eboue gave the ball away cheaply three times in the space of five minutes and Wenger replaced him. The frustration boiled over, the idiots had their scapegoat's testicles handed to them on a plate by the manager, a man usually so single minded gave into the mob, it was a shocking piece of man management as the ironic cheers followed by the hate filled boos was an entirely predictable outcome. With Walcott injured for the next three months, we have to play Eboue with alacrity and the manager and the supporters have probably destroyed him irreparably. Eboue ran straight down the tunnel, the hurt visibly etched onto his features. I'm not saying his last ten minutes was anything other than a shambles, but I'm not sure how expressing bare toothed hatred towards the man is supposed to help. Perhaps someone can inform me because I'm a bit lost here. It's not only the player himself, but Eboue is a popular figure in the dressing room and the other players will have been shaken by that too. Maybe it's becoming apparent as to how difficult Arsene found it to recruit players this summer, who wouldwant to play in front of that sort of hatred towards anyone who makes a mistake? The story should be that Arsenal are back on track, but instead a feeling of negativity pervades the club again because of a few spoiled morons who have shamed the name of the club. If Eboue hits the winner in Rome in May, I hope these F*cksticks keep their heads down and their mouths shut.

After the match we headed to the concourse to watch the highlights, behind us a six year old girl said to her dad, 'Why do they have to pick on Eboue all the time?' My friend couldn't help but commend the fact that she showed more intelligence than 40,000 grown ups, the most sapient comment I heard from anyone in the crowd came from a girl who probably doesn't even know how babies are made. That really says it all. She recognised the disgusting futility of the gesture, how self defeating and moronic it was. She probably better understood that Eboue has been out for five weeks and was played out of position, every one of his mistakes were as a result of wanting to come in on his right foot. But whilst these reasons would wash for most players, Eboue bears a cross in our supporters' eyes and bears the brunt of the sins of the entire team. No Arsenal fans complain when Fabregas or van Persie dive, or when Walcott miscontrols the ball, they store it up and vent it at Eboue or Bendtner or whoever else they happen to dislike. It's a psyche I find quite disturbing and so self defeating. How ironic that, van Persie apart, our best player was probably Alex Song who did not lose a single header all day and restricted Wigan's biggest threat, another whipping boy named Heskey. It really is very sad that my pervading feeling after a hard fought win,the sort we haven't managed much this season, that the prevailing feeling is one of disgust, embarrassment and disappointment.LD.

P.S. I won't be posting a Porto match report as I won't be back from Portugal until Friday afternoon, so if someone else wants to give it a crack then have at it dudes.

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The Journalist

Writer: Tim Stillman Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Sunday December 7 2008

Time: 4:21PM

Your Comments

Ahhh, glad to see the articles back!!! I had a rather strongly worded article ready to go but couldn't publish it, there's little use in posting it now though. Needless to say those booing Eboue don't deserve their tickets. We need support for the team otherwise we're going nowhere. As Tim rightly says, it's self defeating, it doesn't matter whether you like Eboue or not.
Perhaps we'd actually manage to hold on to a few more of our players if the majority of fans didn't act like complete ****s most of the time. I've never felt this ashamed to be an Arsenal fan, and it's got absolutely nothing to do with our relatively poor form over the last few years. If anyone wants to boo ***** off and support Newcastle. You'll have the time of your life.
Exactly Kutch - much more of this and nobody is going to want to play for us. It wouldn't be so bad if these *****ers actually made some noise at any other point.
You guys realise that by devoting so much time and effort into criticising those who criticise you are only adding to the problem of negativity, right? Some fans of every club around the world chose to spend their time judging and harassing their own players, and the fact that a majority of fans were booing is a classic example of groupthink. No sense in dwelling on it and furthering the notion that we are 'in trouble.'
It's not just "some" though TP, it's a lot, and that's a serious problem if you ask me.
I completely disagree, while there's *****s like there were yesterday attending Arsenal matches, this club will always be 'in trouble.' This ***** needs to stop and I can't see that happening if all the intelligent fans choose to ignore whats going on. Football fans in this country are completely dellusional now, and I solely blame the media for this. People would rather accept what****s like Mark Lawrenson or any other uneducated ***** blogger on the net say then formulate their own ******** opinions.
That's fine Rocky, and I've never personally booed my team and never will, but what could you possibly do to stop it? The only way to stop the booers is for the team to play well. Complaining about it is just as divisive as the act itself.
I don't see it as complaining, more as distancing myself from these morons as much as I possibily can. Just standing by an watching these people destroy the moral in the club just doesn't sit well with me. If it causes divisions within the ground then so be it, but someone has to try and show the players that there is actually something to play for.
They know that, they aren't children (well some are of course). They don't need to be coddled. Like I said, I don't boo my team, but they should be capable of ascertaining that a lot of what the crowd does is unwarranted criticism brought on by a herd mentality. And if they can't, then the manager should be able to explain to them that they are playing better than the crowd and media would have them believe. P.S. Tim, don't know if you've ever been to Porto's stadium before, but it is really cool looking from the outside, or at least it was from the taxi when I was riding by it haha.
What needs to be understood is that fans do play their part in football, and when your fans start booing (when you're winning ffs) then it's going to have an adverse effect on the players. You may be happy putting you fingers in your ears and hiding till it goes away, but I aint. Yes, similar things have always exisited in football, but what I've witnessed at Arsenal over the past 2 years is a steady decline in actual support for the team and scarey rise in negativity. More so at Arsenal than in any other club in the country.
I would have liked to hear stronger words from the boss than this bcos the Ebooers were moronic! The boss basically said he took Eboue off after the crowd gave him stick but he did understand that the guy would have taken some more stick when he came off. I really hate those idiots who not only hurt an Arsenal player's confidence despite him playing out of position in his first game back from a 6-week (around that) injury and throwing this dilemma at the boss:
Yes, and you're letting the negativity effect you and this wonderful website which I enjoy immensely. We, the sensible fans, and the players need to let the boos roll off our backs, acknowledgment empowers them by letting them know that they can have an influence. By the way, I just played the home leg of the CC semi-final on Fifa 09, Bendtner scores my two goals, both headers from Eboue crosses. No booing them tonight!
The boss is right: "The same fans will applaud him when he does well." Tell this to those morons!
"...the most sapient comment I heard from anyone in the crowd came from a girl who probably doesn't even know how babies are made." - classic! Anyway, on the topic of booing, personally, I just don't get it. Ok, when you go to a game, you pay a lo of money, and if your not entertained, then it can be frustrating. However if you want to complain, booing won;t make the situation better - it'll only make it worse. TPowell - complaing at people booing is the only way you can get it ingrained that actually it doesn't help to throw a strop and make demorilising noises. if no-one tells them, how do they find out?
TP - In my experience a lot of these fans join in for the sake of joining in, and if the majority of the sensible guys let them know just what utter****s they are being then they tend to back off. Of course you will still have you core tossers, but if we can sway the balance back towards the positive guys then there will be hope for us yet.
If you think complaining about it will stop them, then you are delusional. They know they are having an effect because we are acknowledging that they are when we discuss it. Why would they stop when they know they're influencing us, the media, and the players? Would you stop doing something if you received affirmation that by doing that thing your goal were being achieved?
That is a fair point Rocky, and I agree it is mainly just the herd joining in with the core tossers, but in the heat of the moment, which it was, you could expect more anger (based on this season's form) than benevolence. I just don't think it can be changed through discussion, but rather simply by winning. I suppose you're saying that this discourse could positively influence fans, and that is a fair opinion, just not one I happen to share.
It's true you'll have little direct influence over those doing the booing but you might have a greater effect on those around them. If they can feel the disapproval of others in the stands some, though not all, will shut up. Make them feel that they are undermining the team and not just signifying their dissatisfaction in one player and you might just make them realise how counter productive their actions are. Either way there is little to gain by saying nothing.
Having confronted booers in the past and gotten them to see the wrong in it, I'd have to disagree with that. A lot of these people don't have agendas other than to be part of a crowd, herd mentality as you said yourself. If people don't take the time out to explain to them that what they are doing is wrong then how can they learn?
*consistently winning I should say
Kolo you tell them!,16368,1766_4606086,00.html
I'm not saying to say nothing, just don't allow them to effect your emotions. Disapproval is one thing, vitriol is something altogether different. It is ok to disapprove of the play of a player, it is wrong to boo them. It is ok to disapprove of people who boo, it is wrong to let it pervade into diatribes against fellow gooners. By the way, since when did you guys start using the word ain't. Come on, you guys are better than that lol. Leave that vocabulary for our uneducated southerners.
What's wrong with some of our fans, why Oh why would Arsenal Fans booed one of our own?!
If Eboue chooses to leave the club in January, who can really blame him.
I called the nearest person i heard booing a cu** and a disgrace for booing. It did really pi** me off. The problem is it was about 50 percent of the stadium. However he was particularly awful, and what annoyed me more than the missed passes, was his refusal to get in to his position. He drifted up front and to the right with no rush to get back in to position. When the ball didnt come to him he would shrug his shoulders and generally had a bad attitude.
I think it was all very surreal, have yet to see Arsenal play at the Emirates so I don't really know what the home fans are like, I've only been to a few away matches and from my experience the fans have been great, so this Eboue scenario is just strange to me.
Professor Calculus
The away and home fans are night and day. Everytime I've been away from home there has been singing and positivity even when the game is not going our way. But aside from the Tottenham and Man Utd games I was fortnate enough to get to a couple of years ago the atmosphere at home has been stale to say the least. As has been said in the forums, the fans compalin that the players are only up for the big games, but it appears the fans are guilty of the same crime.
Anyone else sitting in the red section get a piece of paper warning us that if we continue to stand they might close of the whole block? Apparantly the local council are pressurising Arsenal to enforce us all to sit down.
Our home support has got progressively worse though I'm not sure it's too different anywhere else. Spurs were ribbing Gomes a few weeks back in a hurtful and self defeating manner, I don't think there's a Premiership ground in the country that hasn't seen scenes of thismanner, though the force and venom thrown at Eboue was quite unique and I was and am still taken aback. The problem is,these people don't have a passion for the game less than they do their own egos. They are malcontents who turn up and demand entertainment and actually enjoy meting out this sort of abuse, they store it up all week and can't wait to be proved correct about a player they don't rate. If you want further evidence of this sort of trend, have a look at this forum in the hours following the Chelsea victory where certain people were not posting in celebration of the victory, but to post abuse at me for saying RvP was not a team player in the week previous. Like I said, prizing ones ego over the team and venting one's frustrations at assigned whipping boys is de rigeur at chez Emirates nowadays. These sorts of people should probably stick to Big Brother or other such trashy reality TV where people willfully put themselves up for ritualistic humiliation and pnatomime fare. Wenger had a wonderful saying that some people live for the game and some people live off the game. To shift contexts slightly, too many at our home games live off the game as an extension of their own vanity. And vanity manifests itself in a very ugly fashion.
Little Dutch
I've expressed my feelings about the Eboue situation in the forum already, and all the comments here refer to that. Somewhere the analysis of the game has been missed out. We deserved the 3 pts, although it was nervy in the end. We consistently created the better chances, with a bit of luck, one of the 2 shots off the post would have gone in and we could have been less tense at the end. Adebayor had a good game, he's starting to win the headers and RvP is playing nicely off him. They are starting to combine more effectively and thats good news for us. The defence held together largely well, Djourou impresses with very game and he should be the CB for the next 4-5 games. Toure had a good game also, which to me, was (pleasantly) surprising. Heskey didnt threaten much all game, and Zaki was useless in the end. Clichy looked a little undecided, he needs to learn to do the simple things at times, instead of holding onto the ball or the ambitious attacking pass. Cesc' form has been pleasing and he has looked better in the last 2-3 games. Now, he needs to turn that into goals.
hope eboue scores in the champions league final and then .. dies .. nah that woukd shut up a lot of fans if he did that
Tim, I don't live in England and it's therefore an expensive undertaking for me to come and watch The Arsenal play live. Not only the price of tickets, but also airfares and hotel bills, plus some spending money for a few pints and souiveners. I usually have to bring home something for my three boys and in August when I watched the Newcastle game it was three full replica kits, when the visa bill came in September I had to head for the fallout bunker until the missus calmed down. It's therefore so frustrating to see this ungrateful c***'s who go to games almost every week behave like they did on Saturday, now I am no admirer of Eboue, he tends to play act and go's down far to easily, but the treatment of him by so many of our so called fans was absolutely disgraceful, he was coming back after four or five weeks out after injury, not match fit and played out on the left wing witch is not his territory at all. If there was a blame to be given to anyone during and after the game it surly should have been directed towards Mr Wenger himself, he picked the team and set out the tactics and it shows clearly how wrong he got it when he substituted Eboue with only few minutes to go!!!! And can someone please tell me what is Pat Rice doing on the bench. I never see him speak to the manager unless he asks first, his job must surly be to offer the manager his advise when he thinks it's needed.
where are the people who booed,could some of them please come on here and tell us why they think its the best course of action,im fascinated to find out their reasoning
fran merida
Well I've never been so disapointed to be an Arsenal fan since the last 2 games..I think the attitude has been poor...both Bendtner and Eboue deserved every bit of abuse going. I'm not interested on the middle class college boy knobs who write on here..the editor is a northerner, a guy from America on here and a spotty faced gobby 24 year old who gives it on the internet and in real life is a big woose from the tacky Arsenal Tavern..FFS..embarassing or what? Eboue got booed because he deserved wasn't 3, 4 or 5 people it was over 5,000...they know a rubbish player when they see dare you critisise people who pay good money. You are the same scumbags who kiss Van Perie and Bergkamp's backsides when the true fan knows they were the 2 biggest pussies to play for Arsenal. Thank fu(k this board isn't a true reflection on the proper Arsenal fans that go. Oh dear I'm going to get banned by the Tory Arsenal Gang on here none of them Londoners..FFS support your local team you saddos!
Orange Quadrant
Oh my oh my the spuds fan is back OQ why the ***** don't you ***** off to your relegation fodder fans over at vital spuds and let us have a conversation in peace.
My case in point articulated succinctly. Someone not interested in the welfare of the team but their own ego, that's why people trumpet this kind of abuse. OQ (aka Bergkamp Was A Myth) your multiple personalities betray you, last week you used that user name to abuse me for criticising van Persie. If you don't like what goes on here so much, don't come here, you won't be missed.
Little Dutch
To pick up on prits' point, Clichy looked panicked to me on several occasions which is unlike him, I think the mistake against Spurs has got to him a bit, but at least it's a sign he's learned from it. Djourou does deserve a run now (I heard that Arsenal had kept clean sheets inthe last nine games he started prior to Chelsea, a spell he broke himself with an OG), Toure looked much fitter and a little trimmer too. The partnership between Ade and RvP did look decent at times, but we opted for the long ball on too many occasions for myliking and I think Toure contributes to that a lot. Wedeserved the win, we looked very nervous for the last ten or fifteen minutes but I think the crowd had a lot to do with that. Even before Eboue was subbed there was a grumpy atmosphere and it manifested itself on the pitch.
Little Dutch
Nice work Dutch. Sadly the nonsense surrounding Eboue overshadowed the fact that Robin was the man of the match. He has struggled to find consistency this season, but I thought yesterday he was at the centre of everything good that happened. Have to say although I did slaughter him for his mistakes, the booing of Eboue was wrong, on every level.
I agree, I've had words tosay about RvP this season but I too was very impressed with him yesterday. He seems more willing towork for the team rather than himself, as I've criticised him forin the past. I also thought Song had a very good game, his concentration lets him down at times but he was faultless yesterday.
Little Dutch
For once I felt ashamed to be a Gooner. These morons are insulting all of us. I back Eboue to prove them wrong. Just because you pay money to come and watch does not mean you should be inhumane towards the players. What grates me most is i feel a touch of xenophobia. I remember Walcott conceding a penalty and underhitting a backpass to the keeper not so long ago and he gets applauded every time he gets subbed. Sad day for Arsenal!
OQ, if you think the fact that you pay some cash to have the privilege to watch Arsenal, gives you the right to come to VA and abuse players like Eboue, Bendtner, RvP, Bergkamp and 'a guy from America' (all foreigners), you are a worthless piece of trash. You are not a fan/supporter or whatever. You are a disgrace to humanity. Now f off and crawl back into your hole, vile cockroach. Arsenal does not need your kind of support. Noone's obliged to support the club so give your membership away and find another club/person to vent your abuse at. Apologies to the other readers but this guy/gal really *****ed me off.
RvP was very good, although I was a tad bit disappointed that he didnt score a goal. I actually dont mind the use of the long ball so much, it gives us another option. And its not as if that was our only option yesterday - now that would be a cause for concern. It also gives the opposition something to think about. We seem to use that tactic a lot more when Toure starts. Last season, it was mostly Toure who played the long ball to Ade and its continuing now also. I dont see Gallas, Djourou, Silvestre or Song play that. The difference this season is that RvP is around to deal with the headers that Ade wins from those long balls, and that gives us another dimension.
I think Wenger has also been very unfair on Eboue,He brought him in as a RB,he replaced an injured Lauren seamlessly and was magnificent,soon as he settled in the position,in comes Bac Sagna and AW decides Eboue would be better as a RM/RW,he started slowly but steadily grew in his new position and provided some fantastic assists eg: Henry's winning header against Man U and RvP's stunning volley against Charlton. But he was again moved to CM at the start of this season either out of necesity or to accomodate Walcott on the right. 3 different positions in 3 seasons and the guy has honestly tried his best.Now he is expected to play like Pires on the left,Pleeeeze!! Give the guy a break,he is an important player for us bcos he provides depth in at least 2 positions.
Agree with D'arsassin.
i have a request for all da away fans going to Porto & Boro. please give Eboue a rousing reception & make him feel a bit happy & wanted. show him that the real arsenal fans who care about the club and the team are the away contingent..
Urgh the hypocrisy in football Fs me off. You expect players to remain loyal to the club, whether the club is doing well or poor, you expect the player to see the club through the best and worst of times. You ( generally) don't meet your end of the bargain, you should have a players back whether he is performing great or performing terribly it's a team effort. Booing someone doesn't help it puts them under pressure and lowers morale as there is internal conflict. I wish I could be a season ticket holder but I don't live in London, some of the people that go to the games are worthless yobs in my opinion which is why it was better with a smaller stadium, sure less people went in, but it seems that now it's just no. briding the gab and not quality support.
If Eboue started playing really well, became a world player and then out of the blue said F it and demanded a transfer I would not blame him. A similar thing happened with Flamini.
Happened with Hleb too, he got nothing but ***** his first two years here, and by the time the fans came round to appreciate his talents he was ready to leave.
agreed with all but one point of this report - on AW's decision to sub Eboue. I believe AW knew better than anyone the impact of his decision would be on the poor lad, but to protect our precarious lead he had no other options. The mix-up between toure and eboue nearly presented wigan with a breakthrough which summed up the last 15min of the game - wigan looked the likely of scorer and you felt that if they grab an equaliser they would well do a hull on us. Eboue confidence was already shattered at that stage and I believed he would be more of a liability to the team if he stayed on till the end. It was a rare display of ruthlessness by AW and I thought it was a necessary sacrifice for not only the 3 points at stake but the significant bearing that result would have for teh rest of our season. BUT, AW must take full responsibility of the way he placed himself in such awkward position in the first place - for putting out a "just recovered from injury" player in a wrong position. I agreed that AW should have demonstrated his trust on vela/wilshire instead.
2 things. 1 - Yes the booers were tw@s, but they were also caught in the moment 2 - Eboue was, and has been, totally crap. Yes he has played fairly well in a variety of positions but who would really give that much of a $hit if the boss offloaded him for better player? Not me. The joke is, that wasn't even his worst game.
I hope eboue emerges from this stronger, and if he does and goes on to be a revelation like flamini for us, and like flamini subsequently move on to seek greener (or in this case kinder) pasture, these emira-diots better don't cry of the lack of loyalty or gratitude, cos the damage had been irrevocably done
I think you are bang out of order to call anyone expressing an opinion an idiot. What gives you the right to insult people who were showing a perfectly natural human emotion?? For that comment alone you have shown yourself to be no better or worse than those you coated. You have let yourself down with that article LD, make no mistake about that.
If you play like a tosser and show effort you will still be appreciated by the crowd. If you play like a tosser AND show no effort, no desire, no passion or no commitment then you WILL get booed and thoroughly deserve it. You treat the fans with disrespect then you receive it also.
One final word from me on this rather emotive subject (I’d like to stay on cordial terms with the majority on here). Anyone who disagrees with someone else actions that aren't morally or legally wrong, and insults them for those actions is themselves as big an idiot as those they are chastising. Get it through your heads people, we are human, when you get treated like s*** you react that IS the way it is and if you don't like it, deal with it. I along with friends have been going to matches for a bloody long time, I appreciate the efforts of my team and the manager, but if someone says that I am not allowed to express myself when one of our players who has never been welcomed (due to his own childish actions and behaviour) acts like a petulant spoilt brat then they can go take a long walk off a short pier. My ticket, my money, my club.
Have to disagree there, but then that's an opinion. Why on earth put him on the left, Denilson was already out of position, would've made more sense to switch him out there and have Eboue on his natural right.
Just wanna also say how horrible the last ten minutes were on Sat, it was like Stoke... Also, i feel it's not just about Eboue's performance (who was effin pony let's make no bones about it) but a few other things as well... the Season Ticket Prices, the fact that you can't buy Chips (have to buy it with some posh burger costing cŁ8), the fact that the board are on about what a great business model we are and how much money we have, the reasoning behind moving to the Emirates from our beloved Highbury (More money = better players = trophies) whilst we were at Highbury we spent, now we're here our spending is still in the black! Just wanted to point out that it's a culmination of things and Eboue is the scapegoat....
Whether the action of booing your own team and its players is idiotic or not depends on whether you see yourself as a customer simply expressing your opinion of the product you are offered or as a supporter seeking to encourage your team on to better things. If it's the latter then you are bound to see those actions that are discouraging the team as idiotic. There is a common acceptance that a crowd getting behind it's team is likely to achieve more than those one that doesn't. Question is how do you see the role of supporters - or are we just customers now?
Didn't get to this game, but I live in Highbury and I could hear the boos through the windows. I was watching an awful pixellated stream on the net, with no sound, that was about 5 minutes behind. From the noise I heard I thought maybe we'd conceded a 'soft' goal. I didn't realise the booing was aimed at Eboue, though I did wonder at the dramatic following of Eboue with the cameras upon his substitution a few minutes later. It wasn't until later that I found out what had actually happened. I can't say as I'm surpried, really, some Arsenal fans' behaviour this season has been embarrassing; this no exception. Fair enough Eboue has made a rod for his own back with his past behaviour, and it's true that the 'moment' will have swept a lot of voice in the stadium, but we need to see how this reflects on us as supporters in a wider sense. I already feel that our lacklustre home support is a source of frustration to some of our players, but to players thinking of joining, or players being pursued by the club, saturday's negative chorus would have been a very unedifying advertisement, indeed.
So i take it no one knows anything more about the threat of closing down the block where all the people stand up in?
The problem with this is not that if we were to sell Eboue we would have to sign a right back and a right midfielder to recover the losses (I would be happy if they were both class) but he is a favourite within the dressing room and one of the lads. We got rid of two of them in the last window, we cannot start forcing decent back up players out of the club. Just demand for signings. MAKE A CHANT UP!
Ownz i know there was a letter in the Summer from the club having a whinge about them standing up, absolute BS, bring back terracing!
If the player is crap, the team is crap, then the fans have a right to boo. Aint I right? :-)
No you're not right. A poor performance from one player doesn't make a crap team. Just a poor individual performance to be set against other better individual performances that's all. Question is what do fans see their role, if any , as?
A fans role is to be passionate about the team they support. And to smile gratefully while we are being ripped off for tickets, food, and merchandise ;-) nothing more, nothing less. How ones passion is expressed is down to the individual.
Perfectly summed up Gunnerman, couldn't of said it better myself.
Maybe the booing wouldnt have seemed so bad if the booers had bothered to sing 1 song in support of the team during the 90 minutes. The fact the only seem to raise a noise when a goal went in and when Eboue was hauled of says it all.
I happen to think that the practise of booing one's own player is pretty idiotic and childish. It's only going to have negative connotations and if people are unsatisified with the team, casting a massive black cloud back over the club after a couple of decent wins is only likely to lead to greater dissatisfaction. People have the 'right' to boo, sure, but I don't see what purpose it serves at all. I've listened to people offer opinions that I would have no compunction about calling an idiot, I've heard Nick Griffin offer many an opinion and I'd call him an idiot. Right now our club is back in the spotlight for all the wrong reasons and our support is being ridiculed all over the country, I think that was a pretty idiotic thing to do. I'd chance there have been Spurs supporters on this forum on a wind up that you have labelled as such LG. On this occasion, I’d offer some sage advice, (that) IS the way it is and if you don't like it, deal with it. If people see themselves as consumers dissatisfied with the product, do what a consumer does, don't buy it.
Little Dutch
To call the booers idiots might be harsh, but to brand the booing idiotic is fair comment.
Idiot I can deal with, but to have so called reasonable posters here using far more colourful language is stupid and childish also and that as I mentioned is ironic considering that is what they are branding booers. As for the Spurs fans, I have only called people names (as always in life) when someone calls me something first. Just the way I was brought up. Making sweeping generalisations of 40 odd thousand people is in itself a idiotic thing to do........
So you can quite happily condone people coating other on this board? Funny I thought it was about football chat not childish name calling. That is the way it WAS anyway....
I think Iceman has it right. If even half of the booers actually contributed to vocal support of a positive nature then we would have a cracking atmosphere at the Grove, the players would get a lift from it and we might even have an extra point or two. Only turning up to moan is ridiculous, and self defeating.
You would have to be a sad, sad person to just turn up to have a moan and there are a lot that do at all football clubs, but especially Arsenal (for some reason). Personally, Im shouting and singing for most of the match and end up sounding like Barry White for 2 days after each match!!! But, also, I don't like this "if you don't support Arsenal at the match like I think you should" then don't go attitude, it is child like and very immature.
I echo that point too, that was what I was getting at when I said people were getting off on dishing out that sort of treatment. I get the impression that the only reason people go is to vent their anger at the club at every given opportunity. I know so many around me who never open their mouths unless it is to berate one of our players. It's because they enjoy it on some level, much like the England fans in Andorra 18 months back, it was 0-0 at half time which is not a great reflection for England, but the abuse McLaren was subjected to as he walked down the tunnel was disproportionate to what had gone on and it was because people wanted to do it. Even when England went on to win 3-0 they barracked him, the fact was, on some level, they wanted England to fail just so they could be justified in taking out their hatred on McLaren. I think much the same thing happened to Eboue on Saturday.
Little Dutch
That’s possible and is as much down to the fans as it was Eboue's wretched performance which combined did serve up the cruellest moment the Grove has witnessed so far. I did feel a bit for the guy and didn't cheer when he went off, but I did boo him as was my want and felt it was the only way of expressing my poor view of his performance and that of the managers in bringing on a player out of position and clearly not fully fit. So I agree it was partly wrong and harsh, but then sometimes fans view it as the only way they can get their point of view across in any sort of impactful (made that up, it seemed right lol) way.
LondonGooner From a poster/blogger i respect and the reasons behind fans booing. A very interesting piece. He neither agrees nor disagrees just looks at it from both sides.
LondonGooner The best article I have read so far on the whole crowd situation, insightful and intelligent.
It's a fair enough opinion LG - just one thing. Since when did the inhabitants of Ashburton Grove learn more about football than Arsene Wenger? We like to think that we know a lot about football, and some people might, but for the most part we're pretty clueless when it comes to tactics and whathaveyou. People might just believe that the booing is the only way they can get their opinion across, but if that opinion is incorrect then it's only going to be detrimental to the team. I think it's perfectly find for fans to express their displeasure at the teams performance, but to have a bunch of amatuer managers to try influence the managers decision is not only ridiculous, but dangerous too.
* perfectly fine
I think we all know that playing an unfit RB at left wing when there were more suitable players on the bench was an incorrect decision. Ask yourself this mate, by the same token what makes us think we know more than Wenger, What right does Wenger have to be correctly all the time.....If the fans believed they were correct and in this instance I reckon they were, how else could they let the manager know? Wenger makes more correct calls than wrong ones, but this season I have sat and shook my head at some of the awful decisions he has made, especially substitution wise (never his strongest point, I think we all agree)
It's not ridiculous is it Rocky, that's football...we have the right to question manager's decisions and have a healthy debate on them.
To decide whether it is ridiculous to believe that it is a good idea to to influence a manager's decision during a game imagine that each supporter had a button in his seat to press when he wanted a player replaced. At a certain level the manager has to accept the will of the crowd. Do results get better or worse? We all think we know better than the manager or the player at given moments. Usually it is only partly informed and based on prejudices that we have built up for or against individual players. Rocky is right. Encouraging fans to influence a managers decision during games is ridiculous. As is creating a hostile environment directed against your own team.
Just because it's part of football doesn't make it right. Racism and hooliganism has been part of football in the past and that wasn't right either. OK those examples are a bit more extreme than booing, but you get my point.
bad form bad form guys
I think as fans we should be doing whats best for the team. The team would react better to us getting behind them, cheering etc than groaning, booing, getting up in droves to get a hot dog. When Adebayor frirted with AC milan we didnt boo him but neither sung his name letting him know we were not happy about his behaviour. When Gallas made his comments no one in the stadium booed. Yet Eboue coming back from an injury of 6 weeks, playing as a left midfielder and being forced on early has a bad last 10 minutes and people boo him off the park. He unfortuantly is a scapegoat of all our frustrations. Eboue is a popular figure in the dressing room, and his humiliation would not of gone un noticed by his team mates. Rather than build on a consecutive victory, we now go to the riverside with this overshadowing some good results. Eboue is likely to play in the next few games and probably figure in much of this seasons games, so lets try and show some support for someone wearing the Arsenal badge. Lastly if Eboue plays cr*p your anger should surely be directed at the manager for having an unsufficient squad to deal with injuries, im sure Eboue does not go out of his way to play badly. Its not as if he was a superstar midfield player who has become lazy all of a sudden, he was only ever a decent RB.
Its not the first time this either is it guys? Song at Fulham? Bendtner at Burnley? I think its ridiculous how idiotic some fans are. We last week had fans sarcastically cheering everytime Gomes caught the ball. Hell Giggs got booed last week at Utd, their record player! But for a set of supporters who frequently stereotype spurs fans as "an orrible lot" its funny to see you for what alot of you, and everybody else really are like.
I don't support the idea of fans booing players, but I do like the idea of fans letting players know when they've been sub standard. Eboue was way below standard in the latter parts of the game, and while making the errors he made was bad enough, not being bothered to try and put it right makes it worse. Does is make it worth a boo? I dunno, but how else are fans supposed to let their feelings (justifiable too) known?
Plus, Eboue is not a baby. He's a grown man who is married and probably has kids. He is being paid pretty good money too. He should be able to handle boos. Up and coming bands have been booed, stand up comedians have been booed, basically anyone who is some sort of performing artist has been booed, or at least others in their line of work have been booed.
If people booed a guy like Wilshere or Ramsey or one of the kids, then I'd be trully dissappointed. But Eboue, one of the senior members of the squad? I dont explicitly support it, but I don't particularly mind either. Man up and show some cahones, and put in the effort required. Clichy and Toure have made mistakes that have cost us goals and penalties and games, but they don't get booed. It's not that they're favoured, it's just their mistakes aside, they always make honest efforts for the cause, and if Eboue was like them, he wouldn't get booed either.
So I don't advocate the booing, but I don't partucularly mind that it happened. Players need to realise that they play for clubs whose fans care, and if your performance suggests you don't care as much as they do, then don't get surprised when you get booed.
Well if you see it as a performance and yourself as a consumer your attitude is right Gaga. If you don't like a band or a stand up you'd boo them as rubbish and not bother to turn up for the next performance. Anyone continuing to turn up and heckling the same comedian or band would get turfed out for spoiling everyone elses entertainment. If you look at it purely from the perspective of a customer then no-one can have any issue with the response given and with that level of dissatisfaction no-one would expect you to return. However, if you see yourself as a supporter following the highs and lows of your team you would probably think that creating a hostile environment for your team and its players would be counter productive. It must surely discourage the team from performing as you would wish and the enjoyment of those who are less paranoid about individual performances or results.
Gaga, that is the best explanation I have heard so far, fair, balanced and neither condoning or complaining. Amos, he never said he was a customer or that it was from a customers point of view (he used the word fan) people who go and watch a band perform are "fans" but they can boo if the show is crap, so why not a football fan? What I am saying is either way people need to vent and after the fact in an empty stadium or pub isn't helping to get the message across or relieve the frustration. It may be counter productive to the team, yes, but if you don't, it may be counter productive to yourself/fan/individual.
The fact is, it is freedom of choice and that should in no way be impaired by anyone. Yes you have the freedom of choice not to go, but then those that didn’t join in had their choice of not joining in either. I am not supporting it or putting those actions down, just saying people can do what they have the right to do and if people don’t like it tough.
The comparison Gaga used was one of a customer purchasing a ticket to a one off concert or gig. The fact is that if at a certain level your heckling or booing disrupts the gig for others more appreciative or understanding of what is going on you are likely to be unceremoniously turfed out. If you keep going back to watch the same band or act that you are disatisfied with when you hate one or more of the band members or disagree with the comedians material then maybe it's your own actions you should examine. The concept of supporting a team whose performances will always be variable to some extent has to be different. Especially when their performances are cumulative - it's 38 performances you are looking for. Not even that as most football fans will support a team even though knowing the chances of winning a trophy are limited. There is no circumstance ever where booing or jeering a player ever made a player or a team perform better it will invariably have entirely the opposite effect on morale and motivation.
That's absolutely right LG. We all are free to act within reason as we feel and it's tough for those that don't like it. That same freedom means that if others think the actions of those booing and jeering Eboue, Bendtner, Song or others are being idiotic or moronic then they are of course just as free to say so too.
But then I think those that sit there and just moan about it are just as moronic and idiotic or foolish or whatever. But I will just say I don't agree. I need not stoop to puerile/unnecessary name calling. Where are we? The play ground? Well if the cap fits and all that………..
Amos - If over half the people at a gig start heckling and booing, that says more about the gig than the people!
Amos you keep telling me that "it will never make a team play better" I know that, i heard that, i understand that. It is undeerstood, before you told me and understood after you told me. Now if only you could convince 40,000 other who feel cheated by the club as a whole then you may go some way to stopping a repeat at some stage.
Amos, look at it this way, was Eboue putting in as much effort as a player as you put in as a fan? I'd bet he wasn't. And that's the thing that gets our goat as fans. This season Arsenal players have failed to turn up in some games, apparently coz we're playing some Premier League Minnow. But the travelling gooners don't see anything minnow about it, going to all the corners of the world that Arsenal takes them. Spending their hard earned, and increasingly tight, money. Those fans would put in a heck of an effort if they were the ones taking to the field to play for The Arsenal, and when they see those people who do take to the field not putting in as much an effort as they themselves would, boos may just happen. I completely accept that it's counter productive, but to realise that something is counter productive requires that you're quietly and objectively reasonable, and this state of mind is hardly the one you're in when your team is only 1-0 up, with 10 0r 20 minutes to go, and you're know they're perfectly capable of conceding, then you see a guy tackle his team mate, and proceed to give the ball to an opponent, and then he still doesn't seem especially miffed by his mistakes, and he happens to have the ability and history of Eboue, I may not be a socialogist, but I can kinda see how that happened. I'm essentially sitting on the fence on this one, because while I don't support it, I can see how it happened.
I can see how it happened too. Eboue is unpopular as a player. A perceived weak link. I'm no sociologist either but that makes him an easier target for collective frustration with a whole range of issues not directly concerned with an individual player. A popular player can make the same mistake or mistakes in exactly the same way and get away with it. You can claim with some justification that Eboue has partly brought it upon himself but that doesn't make the action right, or for the collective good, just because it is understandable. No matter how justified is was still the wrong reaction and it is just as valid to point that out as it is to point out Eboue's failings none of which exclude him from being a useful squad player and therefore worthy of encouragement.

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