Today at ’North London Is Red’ I am delighted to welcome Brian Fettner as a guest blogger to North London Is Red
Brian is part of the growing American Gooner movement and has supported Arsenal for the last 10 years or so. He has never been to England but feels he should have been born here. He hopes to someday cross the pond to see in person the club he obsessively follows. His beyond natural love for our club has infected his two sons and has caused his wife to proclaim herself an “Arsenal widow” (nice work Brian!). Brian occasionally blogs and I’m really pleased to have him as a guest on North London Is Red. I’m sure you are going to enjoy reading his post, I know I certainly did. Take it away Brian…..
Have you ever come across those Arsenal supporters that always see the positive side of things? You know, the ones always tweeting #Arseneknows or #InArseneWeTrust? They blog things about how the club should, and must come first and how no player is bigger than the club. The annoying ones who talk about how we should support all who put on an Arsenal shirt and chivalrous talk of playing for the crest on the front and we will remember the name on the back?
I’M. ONE. OF. THOSE. GUYS.
I thought I would warn you ahead of time to save you from the horror of my upbeat take on things. Continue reading at your own risk!
Victory through harmony. Our motto has come to the fore of my mind many times over the last month. All the crazy stuff that has happened this summer for Arsenal has pointed me back to this one statement. Is it just something neat to put on the inside collar of our shirt or does it permeate everything Arsenal stand for and do? Can a modern football club really adhere to what is really a simple creed? What is meant by the word “harmony”? These questions have really occupied my thoughts of late and I would like to take a slightly deeper look into what harmony means.
Concordia according to Encyclopedia Brittanica:
in Roman religion, the goddess who was the personification of “concord,” or “agreement,” especially among members or classes of the Roman state.
Our victory must come from an agreement between classes. I suggest there are three “classes” in the world of Arsenal; club (manager, directors, board), players and the supporters. Does our victory really come through a total “agreement” between these classes?
Over the last 5 years we have seen some sense of victory but not the kind of victory we are used to. I would suggest it is because we lacked harmony. The club (Arsène) has had some player every season recently who has caused division in the dressing room. This in turn caused supporters to not agree with the player and, in turn, not agree with the club for keeping him. We begged for changes but the club did nothing at times. I hate to remind you (and myself) that there were even calls for Arsène to go, especially early last year. There was no “Concordia” amongst any of us, therefore no victory.
But……this summer there appears to be a re-commitment to our motto. Over the last month or so I have seen many steps being taken to ensure harmony amongst all 3 classes. Let me explain.
Harmony between player and supporter can become quite strained in modern football but we do now have some players who “get it”. Vermaelen has said all the right things. Koscielny, who is a fan favorite, has not only said the right things but has put his pen where his mouth is and signed a new contract. All three of our new boys have spoken of how Arsenal was their choice and are very happy to be here. Santos, who I’m told rides unicorns through rainbows, has quickly endeared himself to the Gooners. You can’t help but love the guy. You can see it in the training photos that these guys enjoy each other and are having fun playing football with each other. We haven’t seen that in a long time. I would have to question your definition of supporter if you didn’t feel some sense of “agreement” with the players we have left. We stand with anyone who fights for the shirt. They play hard and we stand in harmony with them.
Harmony between club (Arsène) and player is being demanded by what I have seen this summer. Arsène has clearly decided that if you don’t want to be a part of this squad you will be sold. He told RvP, and now Song, to jog on. Arsène wants a harmonious squad and he is finally taking a stand to ensure just that. Enough players have let him down and now he has decided to take back his team and I, for one, could not be more proud of him. Gone are the days of unruly factions in our squad as far as I can see. Talent isn’t enough for you to put on our shirt anymore.
A renewed harmony between club and supporter really started mid season last year. After the disaster that was Man U away and all the backlash that ensued we started to see a team who were really starting to play together. They went on a long unbeaten run that emboldened those of us who never lost faith in Wenger. How he got that team to third place by the end of the season was maybe his greatest achievement as a manager even more than any trophy he’d won previously. After what he has done so far this summer the “agreement” we now have with Arsène is probably at its pinnacle.
The smile I have had since we announced Poldolski has only grown and grown this summer because I see how Victoria Concordia Crescit is not only a self imposed tagline but a creed to be infused into the club, the players, and the supporters. Every step we have seen Arsenal take this summer has been to live up to that creed. I am more excited for this season than I have been in quite some time. We clearly have the harmony it will take for us to achieve victory now.
Brian [tf show_count=true button='grey']Arsenal627[/tf]
Fantastic stuff Brian. When you first sent this to me it sent tingles down my spine and has done every time I’ve read it since. Truly inspiring piece.
Thanks for reading guys and helping me support my fellow Gooner bloggers. Please do leave your comments and don’t forget to click that follow button!
Advertise your business here! Click here for details.