A new beginning. Again.

July 24, 2013

Not sure where to start really. It’s been ages since the last post went up on this site, about two years. A lot has happened since that post. We got rid of a Dutchman whose little boy inside him turned out to be a little cunt. We have offloaded the majority of our deadwood this summer and off the top of my head I make it that there is just Park, Chamakh and Bendtner left that really need to be shifted off the books so that we can put their wages to better use. There’s probably around £150,000 per week to be saved there which, incidentally, would pay the salary of a certain bitey Uruguayan.


It would be fair to say that our pursuit of Suarez has divided opinion, between those very willing to accept him baggage and all and those, myself included, that can see that he would be a great signing in a footballing sense but that his baggage is quite a big concern. I don’t want to get on my high horse about it as we have had players in the past that have been no angels. There was Adams and his drink driving, Merson with his trifecta of addictions and there was Vieira spitting at Ruddock. There is probably some healthy debate to be had over the whole should we, shouldn’t we, sign Suarez. I’m not sure there is a clearly definable right or wrong position to take on it because at the end of the day it comes down to personal feeling and opinion. I know that if we sign him, I won’t get his name on a shirt but I will continue to support the team and I will celebrate his goals because, at the end of the day, he’d be helping The Arsenal.


Right, that’s enough on that for now. I don’t want to go too far down the Suarez rabbit hole – is that an innuendo? Hope not. (It probably is)


As I sit here cobbling this together we are a tad over 24hrs away from the team and fans Q&A event in Urawa. Actually, I’m calling it a Q&A but I am not really sure what it is. It might just be a meet and greet. The only thing I know for sure is that I am going to be attending it and also the open training session that will follow later in the evening. I can’t wait. I also have an extra pass for both events and will give details on it at the end of this post. So, have a look and if you are in Japan, have a go.


I will be attending the event with the site’s new contributor @TheRisingGun. We’ll both be making a dash from work in north eastern Tokyo to Urawa for the event. Ecstatic. Really can’t wait. Living in Japan, life is spent watching games at unsociable hours so to have the team on our doorstep is amazing.


2013 has been a good year to be a Gooner in Japan. We had Freddie Ljungberg here a month or so ago and now we have the team here for two friendlies against Nagoya Grampus and Urawa Reds. Sadly, work commitments prevented me from attending the game in Nagoya. I’ll be making up for that with three days of Arsenal this week, starting tomorrow with the Q&A and open training followed by the game against Urawa on Friday evening and finishing up with a fan arranged drinking session in The Hub, Ikebukuro, from 2pm this coming Saturday. If you are in Tokyo and have no plans, come along and join in the Arsenal related festivities. Warning: the will be drunkenness.


@TheRisingGun will have a post up tomorrow or Friday talking about Arsenal’s push into Asia, so please check it out and give him a follow on Twitter. He’s a top bloke.


Competition time.

I have been promised an extra pass for tomorrow’s open training session and team/fans Q&A. So, if you are currently in Japan and can get to Urawa station by 3:30pm tomorrow afternoon (event starts at 4:30pm) this is what you have to do. Simply answer the question and state why you think you should get the pass instead of someone else. Send your answer and reason for deserving the pass to: thenorthbankblog (at) gmail (dot) com.

Question: Who am I standing next to in this picture?

photo 2

(Yes, a blatant shoehorning of my having met Freddie into the post.)

That’ll do for today as I’m still feeling my way back into this whole writing thing again.

If you want to follow me on Twitter, you can find me: @colm_smyth