Arsenal v Liverpool: the future is just the past with a different sombrero

The future is just the past with a different sombrero

“What do you know about the history of football?” I asked Billy the Dog McGraw with some nervousness when he announced that he intended to contribute to the “Making the Arsenal” blog rather than the contemporary “Untold Arsenal” where he usually resides.

“The club was formed in 886AD ,” he said with a certainty that is hard to contradict – at least not when dealing with a man of Billy’s size, “with the motto ‘exsisto patiens’.  We played our first game on Christmas Day, just before lunch.   Alfred the Great came to watch the first match and there was some crowd trouble during the second half between the Danes and the Wessexians.

“Basil the Macedonian was due to attend but died en route.”

“This is not quite the history as it appears in most history books,” I said, “and I made no mention of such a game in the utterly famous Making the Arsenal book, which is now considered the ultimate repository of knowledge on such things.”

“Then the book is wrong,” said Billy.  “Speak no more of such minor affairs, for I am dealing in HISTORY.”

“”ho did we play?” I asked, “Back in 886AD”

“Live Poodle,” he said, “Thousands died.”

“So your view is that Liverpool have a history of mass violence and cheating?”

“They did win the league in AD889 during the managership of Codpiece the Unlikely, but have done very little since, apart from terrible events when they invaded Belgium.”

“I can see you know your history, Billy,” I said, “so what are the  precedents for this game against the modern incarnation of the Epitome of All Evil?”

“Liverpool will use the pas d’armes style of play, employing the hastilude approach, as they traditionally do,” he announced calmly eying up the barmaid (for we were in a public house of limited repute) and he fancied his chances.

I drew him back to reality (no insignificant task) and asked for explanations.

“This involves a group of players shouting “Kalm Down” in very loud voices as they stand around the goal, and let it be known that any player of the other team (known as the venans ) must first fight, or be disgraced.

“They then challenge the other players to produce their weapons of war.  Now since Arsenal will be there to play a game of football, rather than engage in moral combat, they will the Empire of All Evil players will attempt to kick the Arsenal players to death and remove their shorts as a sign of humiliation and northern humour.”

“You’ve been reading that book on jousting again haven’t you,” I said but Billy had eyes only for the barmaid.  She however appeared to have interests elsewhere, and who could blame her?

“So what about the team?” I enquired trying to conclude the interview so I could write it up and then toddle over to Sky Sports News to give them the data.

“Stuart Taylor, Sylvinho, Kolo Toure, Patrick Vieira, Emmanuel Adebayor,” he said.

“You’re late,” I said.  “My mate Ian told me that one yesterday while the game was on TV, and we were watching our young Jack get all excited what with being in the northern climes and everything.   All of those men you mention played for Arsenal when they had some skill, but now play for Manchester City.”

“You are as sharp as the edge of an A4 sheet of polystyrene in a downpour,” Billy told me.  “But as you say, onto the game against the Evil Ones.    I predict we will play with 11 players in a unique 1-1-1-1-1-1-1-1-1-1-1 formation.”

  • The Much Maligned Aluminium Man
  • Clichy the Defender,
  • Vermaelen the Indomitable,
  • Gallas the Great,
  • Sagna the Sane
  • Fabregas the Wanted,
  • Sing the Song
  • Denilson of the supposed lighter weight but actually not
  • Arshavin the Small
  • Rosicky the Fit
  • Nasri the Also Fit

Subs likely to appear at some stage during the entertainment: Theo the Theo, Diaby the not Vieira, and Bendtner the man who the guy behind me in Block 99 absolutely hates and wants everyone else in the whole bloody stadium to know his views, and I am getting so pissed off with it I am going to ask to be moved somewhere else in the ground.

The score: 6-1 to Arsenal.



  • Arsenal, the Cult of Personality and the Collective
  • Football3s is a new free to play, in match, fantasy football experience which you play in real-time whilst watching the live televised game.  We are featuring Arsenal’s match with Liverpool next Wednesday.  Players also have the chance to win £100. Please take a look at our site:
  • Arsenal 100 years ago – read the novel  click here

(c) Billy the Dog McGraw, Victim Support Services, The Bedlam, Chelsea.

One Reply to “Arsenal v Liverpool: the future is just the past with a different sombrero”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *