My Return to Football

It’s been forever since I actually had enough time to contemplate writing a piece and I sincerely apologize to each of you – followers of Gistoscope and first time readers(I’m gracious like that). But, I’m back like Johann Sebastian(Hehehe) and I’ll try to stick around for as long as my schedule allows.

bach 2Johann Sebastian Bach looking sideways for a change

Okay, to the topic of this post. Football! I finally sat down to watch weekend football for the first time in a long while and this is a mish mash post about the experience and my random thoughts on the premier league – Enjoy!

I started with the Ram-zil-ian Arsenal(I definitely did not just make that up – true story). I felt this would be an ideal platform on which to base judgment of their title credentials. For the first time since the season just after they sold Henry(2007 abi 2008), they’ve actually put together a run of results akin to those of League Winners in the past.  So, I sat down to watch the Gunners . . . and well . . . I wasn’t disappointed. A big loss to a title rival just when the team is picking up a bit of heat has become a mainstay characteristic of the trophy-less Arsenal teams of the past.  I’d like to leave it at that, however, I feel it is only fair to say I saw significant improvements from the young team in red and white. Apart from the obvious increase in class which Ozil offers them, they had real thrust with the pace of Walcott down the right as well as the combined athleticism and general box-to-box-ness(of course, that’s a word) of Ramsey and Wilshere. Which brings me to Ramsey. His improvement, while massive and astonishing, has also been immensely heartwarming. I remember the combined blend of grief, pity and sheer sadness that engulfed I and my friends as we saw his severed leg hanging bizarrely after Shawcross had decimated him way back in 2011. He has become a whole new animal this season and is definitely my surprise of the season. Of course, they’ve been drawn with Bayern Munich and I feel as things look currently, it’s fair to say things are looking a bit bleak for the serious team from North London on the European front.

ramzil 3 ramzil 4The Ram-zil-ian Arsenal in full flow

Manchester City, their opponents on Sunday have been up and down more times than a jumping jack high on crack. The cliché – from the sublime to the ridiculous- best describes their performance thus far. So many excellent victories especially at home have been followed by shockingly poor losses(normally away). For those of you who follow this blog, you’ll know I tipped them to win the league this season, and I stand by that  prediction against my better judgment. Aguero’s injury could potentially topple their season but I believe if Pellegrini can work on consistently getting the best out of this team, then the League is theirs to lose(Sorry Gunners, I’m just not convinced).

Now unto the other pretenders, Liverpool have really impressed me this season and Suarez has upped his game to an even more surreal level. He’s been more than fantastic and provided he does nothing silly(and by silly, I mean insane, senseless and outrageous), he should break Ronaldo’s 34 goal record. However, I think third is the most they can hope to achieve this season.

suarez 2Suarez looking pretty calm . . .

Chelsea seem to possess class in goal, defence and attacking midfield. However, the considerable decrease in the quality of the options in both the defensive midfield and the striker slots mean consistency is but a pipe dream unless Mourinho changes formation radically or gets some real quality into the club during the transfer window. They are out of the Carling Cup, though which I’m sure will really pinch Jose. Their Champions League draw is also pretty interesting but that’s a story for some other time. David Moyes has started off below average on his Ultimate Challenge and has already lost the trust of many of the club’s fans. However, unlike many other teams(Spurs!- another story for another day), the United management don’t make knee-jerk decisions and as things are, you can be sure Moyes will have at the very least a full year and half before he can realistically get sacked. Funny enough- Everton seem to be doing better than ever(yet another story for another day)

And Southampton, there’s no way I’d leave them out. They’ve been the surprise team of the season for me which says a lot about the work done by Pochettino and whoever it is that’s in charge of transfers over there.

There’s so much more I’d like to write about but this is not the piece for all that. As the days roll by, I’d be writing insight pieces on smaller subplots in football and the premier league especially. I think the next one should be the worn out Messi-C Ronaldo Ballon D’Or argument with the slight twist of Ribery. So, till then – Namaste and have a good day.

NeyberyJust a random, unrelated picture of your run-off-the-mill NeyBery

By I.V Okata . . . an avid football lover

Follow him on Twitter @IzutaDGaffer

Picture Sources –,,,


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