Thursday, January 24, 2008

I'm So Flippin' British

The Dalembert Report would like to welcome to its already illustrious fold of commentators the well-known internet superstar and part time English person Arnold T. Pants. Every two weeks he'll post about soccer. Or futbol. Whatever.

Back in the UK last week. Back to some tried and true methods of amusement. Friday my cousin, Chaz, and I teethed a mobile and shopped it on road. Fitting behavior for a man of my age? Absolutely not. Then again, age appropriate action is not exactly the calling card of booze Britain.

Take, for example, the football. Here, each Saturday (and the occasional Sunday) old men drink a few more pints than they should and call slightly younger men cunts. These younger men are wearing shorts, kicking a ball, and receiving a right verbal bollocking, all for an average yearly salary of just over one million quid.

Such was the scene last Saturday at Craven Cottage. My cousins hold season tickets at Fulham, and for roughly five months I had been plotting to extract one of the seats for their fixture with Arsenal. The Gunners sit at the top of the table, Fulham perilously close to relegation. Their fans carry an air of defeat, but stoically weather the storms (offensive and natural) with brilliantly comic quips and short bursts of intense anger.

“Where did we find this fucking bloke?”

A man, wearing a bowler, stood to address the surrounding supporters. He was talking about a hapless young defender, constantly terrorized by Arsenal’s young star Cesc Fabregas. I sat quietly, laughing inwardly, afraid to reveal my true colors.

To my left, and behind one goal, a sea of red swayed in the visitors end. The songs were lively and full of joy.

“We love you Arsenal, we do. We love you arsenal, we do. We love you arsenal, we do. Arsenal, we love you.”

I felt the same way, but also felt the bloke beside me looked too much of a handy bastard to turn on. So I remained quiet, letting out only a subdued fist pump when Emmanuel Adebyor headed in a clinical cross from Clichy in the 19th minute. Not too long after, the feat was repeated from the opposite side of goal, this time supplied casually by Alexander Hleb. Arsenal strode in to the dressing room with a 2-0 half time lead. I went to the toilet.

Roughly 200 people in my section and exactly two toilets to relieve a throng of bursting bladders. One man decided it was appropriate to take a shit. The man ahead of me in line was not amused. “Are you fucking serious, he’s only gone and shit!” Next, the man confided in me that Clint Dempsey “Isn’t a striker in a month of Sundays.”

The Texan has been Fulham’s lone bright spot this season, and appeared shrunken by the pressures of ranging freely as a lone threat on goal. Frequently offside, he was outclassed by everyone in Arsenal’s defense. Can’t say I was unhappy, though I did wish for him to play well (and harbor hopes that he will become captain of the US national side). He did have a chance, and characteristically ruined it with an unnecessary early move forward.

Eduardo and Arsenal were soon off to the races again. The Brazilian, who is now worryingly a Czech, dazzled and outpaced the Fulham side, whipping the ball across goal for the sliding Tomas Rosicky. 3-0, I was a grateful man.

Spilling out to the darkened streets of south west London, Fulham supporters were dejected and the Arsenal mass began to sing about more difficult opponents.

“He dives to the left,
He dives to the right,
That fucking cut Ronaldo,
He dives all night.”

Ronaldo is, most probably, the most devastating footballer in the premiership. And, he is also a cunt, and Portuguese. These are characteristics I find troubling.

The season moves forward and title hopes for Arsenal still shine.


  1. I can only assume that Arnold T. Pants is none other than the limey,_Pat/Pictures/

    Quite good futbol commentary. Nice to read about something besides how much we despise the Giants and the Patriots.

    But seriously, quit pretending to be an arsenal fan, and admit that you love Watford, you yellow c-younexttuesday.

    Also, Fintan's new nickname, one to add to the catalogue, is Fabregas.

  2. People who spell catalog with the ue on the end is nothing short of a fag, or should I say, fague