You got to be having a laugh

Now I’m no fan of the weekly pantomime that is Arsenal Fan TV but for now they are here and here to stay or until Robbie gets picked up by one of the majors to become a real football reporter which I’m sure is his dream job. The former reggae boy from the BBC created this monstrosity with his mate and AFT cameraman Tai to supposedly take on the established professional pundits who comment on our games from a position of detachment in their finely appointed studios. In fairness if you look at the likes of Robbie Savage, Michael Owen & Jermaine Jenas et al its not difficult to disagree with the boys from AFTV. Some of the collective lack of wisdom from the established punditry genii makes you want to give your kids a damn good thrashing for not finishing their homework. Who can forget Owen’s immortal quote ‘whichever team scores the most goals normally wins the game’. Stone the crows if that quote isn’t full of divine wisdom from a man who played the game for 20 years and its living proof that you don’t need to be intelligent to be successful at football

Based on this there was a definite need for a fan based TV punditry collective to put across real unbiased views from real fans. Well that’s what was supposed to happen but to be honest that would have been as boring as bats s**t and Robbie the brains of the outfit knew this. If you look at AFTV’s early offerings back in 2012=13 it was all pretty mundane stuff but they soon worked out that nothing sells like bad news. The shock jocks of the online fan tv had arrived. Robbie the skilled facilitator loads the proverbial gun and then gets his carefully selected Arsenal experts to answer the questions. These so-called experts are fans just like you and me but in the main they are anti establishment and anti Wenger. This is the crucial ingredient to the mix that either makes or breaks the YouTube views. The original go to pair were Claude & Ty the ‘Who’s on First’ duo of AFTV. Ty is one of the those rarest of species on AFTV, the eternal Optimist whereas Claude is just as he looks, Mr Grumpy. Its not a big stretch to think this is all partly scripted in an ad hock sort of way. I have it on good authority that Ty is a genuine sort of guy who truly loves the Arsenal and has followed them for over 20 years. Claude on the other hand is a bit harder to get a handle on because of his outward persona of just being perpetually miserable 24/7. Let’s face it the majority of their viewers are not Arsenal fans they are opposition supporters who want us to lose so they can watch the shenanigans unfold like a carefully scripted soap opera. Research has proven that when arsenal win their views drop dramatically and I’m talking in the 100s of thousands which is a pretty compelling statistic so of course from AFTV’s stand point its better when we lose and even better when we lose badly like at Bayern and Liverpool. I have been a harsh critic of AFTV at times because I’m a bit old fashioned and I believe in loyalty to the cause even under fire but hey that’s just me.

The new Arsenal fan circa 1990 comes from the ‘want it now’ generation and are little less forgiving when we don’t spend half a billion every transfer window and don’t match their line up on FIFA 18 or fantasy football manager. Now before all the hate mail starts pouring in I’m not knocking those supporters its their right to support the team anyway they like but it is also very clear that we have two very different types of fan within our fan base. Robbie knows this and he knows his apples and his favourite apples come in the shape of DT and Troopz and I got to hand it to DT because I think he missed his calling in life, the man should have been an actor. Some of his rants are legendary and have football fans from across the different leagues and right across the globe tuning in for a laugh. Even celebrities like Gary Neville and Liam Gallagher tune in for a dose of the giggles because of the entertainment value they get from watching Robbie and DT do their Morecambe and Wise stand-up routine. Unfortunately for us its at the expense and dignity of the Arsenal football club and usually involves personal insults aimed at Stan Kroenke, Arsene Wenger and any number of players. These are not captains of industry or titans of the game dishing out the verbal battering’s, they are blokes off the street who until now have not tasted any fame or success in life. They want to be stars and have online fame I get it, they are trying to get their names out there in the media, I get that too. What I don’t get is all the hostility and agro that comes with it. Fights at the lane the lads from AFTV employing minders to get them in and out of the ground and Arsenal Fans turning on Arsenal fans on the Emirates concourse. This is not entertainment and its definitely not funny football is a family game these days and we don’t need or want the terrace wars of the 70’s. AFTV are well established now and have the real power to do some real good. They are not going to influence who owns Arsenal football club that’s done and dusted and as Stan Kroenke and his son Josh pointed out in their recent interview with the Daily Mirror they will never sell and they are here for generations. They are also not going to influence who manages Arsenal despite DT’s banner waving, marching and on line stamping of feet Wenger still got a new 2-year deal.

Instead of building the whole AFTV premise around Arsenal negativity, division and conflict why not promote the club its players and the fans. Sure, deliver constructive criticism where its due but be balanced in your opinions and display a measure of objectivity in your analysis. If you need to rant for content and views sake then rant about how many times the referee failed to award us a penalty or how many fouls and dives the opposition got away with’ Surely the FA and their inconsistent application of the rules deserve some measure of rage & of course the premier league for trying to schedule games at midnight on Christmas Eve in Siberia deserve a large slice of DT mania. Surely you can still build up an inarticulate rage frothing at the mouth while turning blue at any of these topics so why oh why do Arsenal have to be the butt of all the jokes?

Arsenal have never in their entire history been a European power house and even after Wenger goes in 2019 who is to say we will. We have won the old 1stdivision/premier league in patches through our history and our most successful period was in the 1930’s winning the league five times. We have never been consistent like Utd and we were mostly considered a cup team in the 70’s and 80’s so why try to make out we are something we are not. Money its all about the cash, because there is so much cash in the game now and so much more in clubs like Utd, City and Chelsea some people think we should be matching them dollar for dollar. In their 112 History Chelsea have won 23 trophies 14 of which they won after Abramovich took over from Ken Bates in 2004. Manchester City were playing in the 3rd division as recently as 1999. The game has moved on in to a new era of even more money and sadly for many teams they are never going to win any trophies let alone the FA or league Cups but AFTV and many of their fans say that the domestic cups are worthless or secondary trophies yet Chelsea, Utd and City have won the EFL Cup a combined 9 times in the past 12 years so they obviously don’t think so. We all want to win the league but because of the influx of cash it’s getting harder and harder every year. Leicester was a one off and its highly unlikely that will happen again. A supporter from one of our most bitter rivals told me that they love watching AFTV because they have turned our club into a sad pathetic joke where are own fans and fan tv hate us more than our rivals do.

Food for thought.


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