Football FanCast guest columnist Lee Mahon is frustrated at the way Fleet Street are attempting to unsettle Arsenal football club.
My father once said to me to take what I read in the newspapers with a pinch of salt, because football journalists haven't got an effing clue. While I have tried my damndest not to buy into what I'm reading, or rise to the bait when a load of tripe is presented before me, there are occasions, like this week, where the mask slips and I have to pour out my annoyance.
I don't know who Arsenal have upset in the media, but for the second summer running they are really attempting to stick the knife in yet again. Every week we are subjected to stories that are a blatant attempt to destabilise the football club, mostly be touting our players with other teams. It makes me wonder the kind of response the journo was expecting to get from Cesc Fabregas when asked his thoughts about Guardiola and Barcelona, but he got his positive response and his subsequent "Cesc wants Barca move" headline complete with quotes. To think these people are actually qualified and get paid to write such dross, no wonder so many footballers treat them with such contempt.
The story that got under my skin this week was from Martin Samuel who came up with his very own, finger to the wind story that apparently Arsene Wenger maybe willing to sell Cesc Fabregas should a suitable offer come in based purely as he isn't a manager who gives much away and lets on that he is unhappy with players. Secondly he goes on to suggest that Wenger maybe wary that Arsenal's record without Fabregas is actually better than when he is in the team, even though there is 1.4% difference between the stats, even stating that he was on the pitch for our defeats to United and Chelsea, like he was responsible. And lastly the old chestnut that the club have to be wary of their finances and will therefore may be tempted to cash in…Great research sir, no wonder you win all those awards.
I'm just dying to know as to where Mr Samuel got his inspiration for this story and why he is attempting to second guess Wenger. It is total utter drivel with no other intension than to provoke a response of which it got. I'm sure rival newspapers will work from this and spawn similar articles as a way of driving a wedge between manager and player. Unfortunately the more damaging implications of such stories is that it may alert the likes of Barca and Madrid in to making a bid and subsequently unsettle Cesc, which could hurt us in the long run.