Arsene Wenger praised Arsenal’s commitment and felt they were “a bit unlucky” in their 2-0 FA Cup fifth-round defeat to Sunderland.
“a bit unlucky”… Arsenal have been more than a bit unlucky with injuries to their defenders this season, and just as it seemed they were getting near to a full compliment returning suddenly they’re looking decimated again. However, a make-shift defence doesn’t account for two games without a goal. If Wenger was happy with their commitment maybe he was watching a different game to me because I saw a group of fairly good players coming together as a poor team who look short on confidence and ideas and were outclassed for most of the match. Ramsey and Arteta looked lightweight against a physical team like Sunderland and the mis-match was exposed horribly on a pitch that looked like it was home to a herd of cattle a couple of hours earlier. Djourou simply isn’t good enough to player for Arsenal (there’s probably some language in which Djourou translates as “liability”) and once Squillaci (same translation, different language) came on for the injured Francis Coquelin the feeling of doom was firmly bedded in. Unlucky, yes, because Coquelin was looking lively and has impressed every time I’ve seen him play. He’s one to keep… one of just six.
Wenger can stand on the touchline flapping about like a demented albatross, but here’s the facts… two top players left the club and netted around £60 million. He’s spent a fraction of that. The only positives to come out of Wenger’s transfer dealings is that he bought a defender who, in times of being fit, will reduce the chances of Djourou and Squillaci ever gracing the pitch again, and he bought Chamberlain and is actually playing him. But the fact remains that Wenger has stuck with sub-standard players (see above, plus others) and has not invested the money in new talent. And therefore, what does he expect?
However… what if, just supposing, the directors have quietly requested that Wenger doesn’t spend all of the transfer kitty, and Wenger is playing the obedient boy and making do with less money than we all believe he has? If that’s the case, someone should come clean, because as it stands it looks like Wenger is failing the club… but perhaps it’s the board who are causing the lack of investment and progress. And if that’s the case, it’s not fair for Wenger to take the rap.
Whatever, Arsenal’s season is NOT over. 4th place is now a valuable prize to play for, and after the bad luck and bad form this season grabbing 4th place will almost feel like a trophy. With no 4th place and no Champions League the ability to retain top players (namely Robin van Persie) and attract new players will be dramatically reduced. And that’s something for Wenger and the board to consider, but a little too late to do anything about.
Verdict: keep Van Persie, Sagna, Vermaelen, Chamberlain, Coquelin and Wilshere. Okay, and Szczesny. Scrap the rest of them, and yes, that includes Walcott.
Leveraging the paradigm shift of the win / win
Sun, Apr 28th 2013 6:16p Darren Adams I refuse to use the word ‘leverage’, apart from there in the title, but that’s for the purposes of irony. I don’t have any proof, but I’m sure it was once only a noun – leverage is something you have, not something you do. But sometime in the last twenty years – I remember having a conversation about it with someone who left Lotus a long time ago – leverage started to be used as a verb. dictionary.com now lists it as a verb, the proof is here. My f [read] Keywords: lotus
Windows 8 apps for e-mail, calendar and people
Fri, Mar 29th 2013 10:14a Darren Adams A few days ago Microsoft updated some of the core Windows 8 apps, namely e-mail, calendar and the people hub. These are the apps which sit on the new Windows 8 start screen and are of particular importance to Windows 8 RT users (since they don’t have much of a choice of other e-mail clients to choice from). My take on the e-mail is this… phone e-mail is for getting rid of the rubbish and doing a quick reply when required. Outlook is for full e-mail processing when I sit down at a des [read] Keywords: applications
Plantronics Calisto 620
Tue, Mar 19th 2013 3:15p Darren Adams Following on from my recent post about the Voyager Legend UC, today I’m turning my attention to something that sits on the desk rather than on your ear. The latest addition to Plantronics’ Calisto range is the 620, and it’s got a rather attractive selling point.
My home office (a grand title for the room that often features drying laundry) is equipped with a Jabra SPEAK 410 speakerphone, which connects to my laptop or Surface RT to take Lync calls. After two years this continue [read] Keywords: ibm
Social media annoyances
Sat, Mar 16th 2013 12:15p Darren Adams I recently mentioned on Facebook that I don’t like food photos. Other people agree with me – Incubus bassist Ben Kenney said that “food photos are the Comic Sans of Facebook”. I do appreciate that other people probably get equally bored with me posting photos of Missie (although she is really cute so the photos tend to get a lot of likes), and it has been pointed out that posts about Arsenal’s progress are as boring as I find posts about rugby.
For a bit of fun I po [read] Keywords: facebook
Plantronics Voyager Legend UC
Fri, Mar 8th 2013 6:11p Darren Adams Today I was in the right place at the right time, and with the right colleague who had a box full of Plantronics products. And so it came to pass that I got my hands on a Plantronics Voyager Legend UC. We make good use of this stuff – within the Microsoft campus there’s no phones on the desks because a headset plus Lync on our computers handles the telephony. At home the same applies, although I tend to use a speakerphone.
The Voyager Legend headset itself is not very big, so why the [read] Keywords: desktop
Why 4th place is the prize
Fri, Feb 22nd 2013 11:11a Darren Adams Last September I wrote a blog post entitled Targeting 4th place, based on the fact that this was, in my humble opinion, the best that Arsenal could hope for this season. The underlying facts were that ManUre would continue to be a dominating force (and bolstered by the signing of Judas van Persie), Man City would be in contention to retain their title, and Chelsea would rise again after a disappointing 6th last season. Last season Newcastle were looking like a threat (a concern which has since e [read] Keywords: facebook
Farewell Lotus Park
Fri, Feb 22nd 2013 8:11a Darren Adams On the 26th of November 1991 I started my employment with Lotus Development Corporation. Initially I worked in the Customer Support team, supporting Lotus 1-2-3 and Symphony. After a couple of years I joined the Corporate Sales team as a Systems Engineer, and worked my way up the Technical Sales organisation, hitting a peak as Technical Sales Manager of the North Region (which included South Africa, of course). After a re-organisation (now fully in the clutches of IBM) I proverbially stuck two f [read] Keywords: collaboration
What’s new in Outlook 2013
Wed, Feb 20th 2013 11:12a Darren Adams Having said that I’ll cover off the new features in Outlook 2013, I realised that I’d already written about some of them (available via this blog’s Outlook tag). Nevertheless, here’s a quick run-through of some of the new features.
Better visibility of draft messages – probably my favourite feature and used many times per day. More info here. Click on the image for a larger version.
In-line replies – rather than opening a new reply window, a reply can be comp [read] Keywords: exchange