Afternoon fellow Gooners… Today’s blog is your third installment of my World Cup travels, and in case you missed it, the last installment was the update about my trip from Johannesburg to Rustenburg for the England game… and of course, the first installment was the trip itself to South Africa. In the meantime, JAT has been discussing keepers – Rob Green for Arsenal anyone? So, here is my third installment…
Yesterday I travelled to the Soccer City stadium, for the Holland vs Denmark game, and there was a big Arsenal interest with voth Van Persie and Niklas Bendtner for their respective countries. The organisation in Rustenburg in relation to the stadium and the transport left much to be desired, but the organisation in Soccer City was much much better. A park and ride system was easy to get to and easy to get to the stadium.
And what a stadium! A 85,000 seater stadium, which was complete engulfed in Orange and the native Africaans were out in full force, outnumbered the Danes, 10 to 1. I was sporting my Arsenal shirt (which you’ll see later) and literally supporting two players – one in each team. Niklas Bendter actually played much better than a lacklustre Van Persie – whom despite his assist, was really woeful in front of goal.
That’s the picture from my seat by the way, which was awesome and I’ve had two awsome sets of tickets. Holland deserved their win as they did edge their opponents, but Denmark as a team were much better than the score line suggests, and had they not subbed the mercurial Niklas Bendtner, they may have equalised. Talking about Niklas Bendter – he was one of the many players (including Sorensen, Agger and the chap with long hair) that myself and fellow Gooner Bob met after the game. They were all very friendly, but not too talkative. For those of you following WOA on facebook, you can see all the pictures and a bit more detail, but for now, here’s a nice one of me and Niklas Bendtner…
As you can see, I’ve not been sleeping and I’ve been drinking a lot of beer! But nevertheless, Nikki B is another one to add to the long list of footballers I’ve been meeting recently (check out a long list from last weekend)… we didn’t speak much as Nikki B had his parents with him so I didn’t want to disturb him – after all, I am a gentleman!
Today is all about Brazil vs N. Korea, which the whole of Jo’burg is buzzing about – of course, there was an earlier game, Portugal vs The Ivory Coast, which ended in a 0-0 draw, with CIV edging possesion(51%) and Portugal edging the shots on target (5 to CIV’s 4) – Eboue representing Arsenal and having a decent game.
Onto Arsenal news, and we’ve announced the new Arsenal shirt, take a look here:
For those journalists out there – Cesc is on the picture – he is not leaving! The away kit does look pretty nice and it’s about time, as some of the recent ones haven’t been the best – I’m losing count of how many tops I’ve bought, but hey ho, time to pre-order.
There is still a lot of news circulating about Cesc and despite the rejection of the offer and the statement that we are not going to entertain any further communication on the subject, ex-president Laporta was quoted as saying:
“I will inform him [Rosell] of how negotiations with Cesc are going. The player wants to come, Pep Guardiola and Txiki Begiristain have told me the player hopes the deal will be done. I would suppose the same case for Rosell. Negotiations are now on standby. Barcelona want to pay as little as possible, while Arsenal what to sell for their top price. It’s understandable.”
Well, of course they’re on standby – how about for about 7 or 8 years!!! As JAT commented on yesterday, there is a severe infringement of rights and a clear case of tapping up – will FIFA do anything about it? I’m not sure. JAT did send a message to Sepp Blatter asking him what he was going to do, but as far as I am aware, he hasn’t had a reply…. yet.
Cesc has been keeping stum on the whole story and Arsene Wenger during his commentary with Eurosport has re-iterated that Cesc Fabregas will be staying. Cesc has spoken ahead of tomorrow’s game with Switzerland and was very modest about this chances.
“We’re a regular team and we need to go little by little. When we won the Euro nobody was talking about us. You have to be humble and only concentrate on the first game and we’ll see what happens. Group classification is the only importance.”
Well chaps, to summarise… the World Cup is hotting up tonight with Brazil playing their first game, tomorrow will see Spain in action in Durban before Bofana Bofana (South Africa) take on Uraguay in the evening – and tomorrow is a public holiday, so it’s going to be absolutely crazy! As for Arsenal news, there’s nothing much new in that department, same stories, similar quotes, no new signings and just a new kit. Although, it is a very nice kit!
Adios for now.