I'm touched (No, not like that!
) that a few people have missed me on here. I have met several top Gooners from this forum during the protests against TOF. I am surviving, as usual. The fact is that for the past few years I have only checked in every six months or so to post my thoughts, as things have gotten so miserable with the club. This season is case in point.
While I enjoyed regularly posting here for my first couple of years, starting some match threads, doing write-ups of the games and having some banter with some of you (Is CorkBarry's thread still going? RIP that MILF thread though...), I just don't feel I can contribute much, at the previous standard, if I am not watching the games live.
The 2017-18 season I couldn't bear to watch, as TOF got that final undeserved contract despite the protests. The 2018-19 season I couldn't watch live after that depressingly familiar first day defeat in Dick's first league game; I just needed some separation and stuck to the highlights on MotD, but I hoped that Dick did well and it was a shame that it all went so wrong at the end of the season, which hung over into the next season and Dick was sacked.
While I did watch almost all of the 2019-20 season live, and was unhappy that we hired a rookie (we should have gotten Ancelotti), it got so miserable that I didn't want to resume posting with a similar feeling to the last decade of TOF. What more can be said about The Syrup's disinterested mismanagement of the club? While I enjoyed the FA Cup win and hoped that Arteta could become the second coming of GG after all, this season has showed that it clearly papers over the utterly dismal league performances and, tellingly, league points average under Arteta, whose unjustified Napoleon complex is alienating much of the players.
So, this season? Fuck it. I don't even bother with MotD anymore; I only follow what's going on via a couple of Arsenal podcasts and that is quite enough for me. We started this season fairly bright, collapsed, finally started playing the kids and got some decent results, but we always drop points and lose games we should not be, like last night. Mid-table mediocrity has arrived. I get the FT result alerts and all these defeats and dropped points hurts slightly less because I didn't put myself through it. Respect to those of you who still do.
At the end of the season, I suppose I'll come back to post my summary, but I have basically summed it all up already. It's just a question of where in mid-table we finish. It is telling that I feel the need to keep checking our points average, just to project where we might finish (currently on for about 53 points, which would put us 11th last season; Europa qualification is surely out of reach and I'll be very
surprised if we win it this season). I am at the point that anything over 40 points is a bonus.
Perhaps a break from Europe next season would do us good (à la Chelsea finishing 10th and winning the title the next season); but I'm sure this club's management would certainly find a way to fuck that up. It's not like they hold on to lame duck managers, or rely on cheap, inexperienced replacements, eh? It certainly looks like we're going to extend our dry run of League titles beyond the historical 18 years of 1953-71 and 1971-89. Who would ever have thought that was possible after completing the unbeaten season?
Anyway, I am glad that this super league farce was slapped down in a rare victory for football supporters (though it seems some of them have not given up trying again in the future) and I am sure this ridiculous Europa Conference League isn't worth the air miles, especially during a bloody pandemic. If they absolutely had to resurrect a third European competition, it should have been the old Cup Winners' Cup; two-leg knockout ties all the way to the final, like it was back in the good old days before football (and our club in particular) turned into a corporate entity.