Barton and on, and on, and on…

Football’s back! The Arsenal’s back!…but so is this sort of thing.

Yes, the man who has recently been building false integrity and perceived insight based on the borrowed lines of artists and philosophers, took to the field yesterday and returned to what he does best. Not playing football, but being an angry, hateful man.

You know, it might be prudent for any skilled and potentially threat-posing debutantes of future teams lining up against Joey Barton to be warned of the despicable mood and warped logic he carries with him onto the football pitch. Gervinho certainly wouldn’t have expected that his first league appearance in an Arsenal shit would be so affected by a footballer sporting the stylish locks of a Bash St kid.

Him on the right looks familiar...

I wasn’t even surprised by Barton’s actions, although a riled Gervinho clearly wasn’t informed he’d be hauled to his feet for going down under contact in the box. Nor that the man haulling him up so violently (when Peter Walton’s back was turned, surprisingly) would then feign what Steven Taylor claimed the most elbowy of elbows, only before apparently apologising and claiming that he didn’t see a thing.

Oh my days, does that mean you lied Steven? Or perhaps it was a flashback of post-penalty denial?

In any case, I found it right at the time to tell Joey Barton via Twitter, his preferred base of twisted logic, that he was a cretin, although he probably found it a compliment.

What was interesting though was to see his tweets and conversation with Robbie Savage and Piers Morgan after the game, which you can see here:

Ah Joey, your logic is immaculate. Granted you may not have the benefit of the replay to prove that there actually was contact on Gervinho – thus destroying the very core of your argument – but that the game hadn’t stopped meant that Gervinho should have had a second penalty for your violent conduct (I refer you to page 35 and Law 12 of FIFA’s own rulebook). You’re welcome.

Moving on quickly, I don’t really have too much to say about the Arsenal squad at the moment. We lacked spark and creativity yesterday, and a quality midfielder would go a long way to improving my opinion of our capabilities, but the positives from St James’ are a solid defensive showing and a decent performance from Rosicky, who is finally giving a hint of the player he can be without recurring absence and injury.

A point isn’t too bad all things considered, though it’s telling that we failed to capitalise on the few clear cut chances we had, and it’s unsurprising that one of the players looking good pre-season will now miss games. Alex Song should as well, and if he does then what’s to stop the officials giving Joey Barton a retrospective red as well? Oh, yes, the fact that it was dealt with on the pitch. So the uninterrupted joy of watching Barton goes on, and on, and on.

It’s only just worse than seeing a defender your team has been linked with score an absolute pearl in an emphatic opening win.

Oh football, how I’ve missed thee.

In the face!

Well that was an interesting weekend’s footy. There I was, having come on in the last 15 mins of my Sunday League team’s match. I was doing my customary non-winning of headers despite my Crouch-esque height and then -BEHOLD! – a pass through the middle for me to chase. Exactly the kind of pass that I’ll rattle after like an elongated antelope and have a crack at goal with. Shoot? I can do that.

Chasing a ball on the bounce I lobbed the keep with enough pace and insta-calculation of erratic incalculable wind-power to sneak it over the line and trundle  it just inside the post, beyond the chasing defender. I spun around for a bit of a “cheeky ‘what’d I do?” shrugging celebration, followed by an expletive-fuelled fist-pump and all was rosey.

3 – 2. Ten mins on the clock. We’d gone 1 – 0 down, one man down, to 1 – 1, to 2 – 1 down, 2 – 2  and then…I come on and wow, might have scored the winner. Except:

My own fault. If I’d jump for headers I’d be a good foot an a half away from anyone’s elbow, but that’d be too easy. Thwack in the face, I felt a slight crunch and then there was a hell of a lot of blood. I stayed/dazed on and then we drew 3 – 3.

“Hang on, this reminds me of some metaphorical face smashing  just yesterday”,

I thought to myself as the red scattered upon the grass like Gunner confidence, and my goal was cancelled out by a late shot.

On Saturday in Tyneside, Arsenal collapsed under the weight of a combination of Diaby’s pyschologically understandable reaction and subsequent sending off, Djourou’s knee knock, Barton and Nolan’s cretinous behaviours, and the winner of this week’s Best Hash of Officiating, Phil “BUT HOW?” Dowd.

Actually I blame the guy at the Emirate’s screening who chirped at half time:

“Well, normally at screening’s it’s either a draw or a loss!”

….Cheers mate.

Well the Arse drew, but United inexplicably came up against an Uberinformazoided Wolves and bizarrely Arsenal closed the gap. Huh, didn’t see that coming. And “but it could have been less of a gap” sayers can shh. It isn’t, stop whining. A point closer to the leaders than many would have expected Arsenal to be off the back of odd-on Arsenal and United wins.

Sunday proved that Torres is just a human and not some kind of money-fuelled goal machine, having had the least touches of any outfield player in the Chelsea vs King Kenny’s Liverpool™ game (cheers Opta).

Also the football Gods clearly currently favour the magic of underdogs and the nostalgia of legends, and meanwhile Sky continued to prove that it can devalue any quality franchise or show with a tenuous link to some football goings on. Boardwalk Empire became (Fulham) Broadway Empire and Steve Buscemi morphed into Fernando Torres. Sky, that’s shit. Not not as bad as the time you made Wenger a cyborg though.

Birmingham’s Zigic proved that us tall blokes can play terribly and still score (represent), and some other teams won, drew and loss. I could do more about those but then I’m writing this late on a Sunday evening so there’s not really that much point. But, as I was saying, an interesting weekend’s footy.

Tomorrow I’ve got to face the colleague whom I assured Arsenal would maintain a clean sheet this weekend and that he should put money on it. Thing is you can’t legislate for sendings off. I think I’ll say:

“Well, you can’t legislate for sendings off.”

And you can’t. Nor indeed can you legislate for an elbow to the face. By a twat.

ATS.