It looks like Sol Campbell will be re-joining our ranks after he appeared in the reserves last night away to West Ham United.
A few weeks ago I was mulling over who might be bought in as “old hands” short term to provide experience to an improving but still not complete side. My mind lit on the name of Sol Campbell. I wished I’d blogged on it then. I’d have seemed very well-informed! The truth is it was based on nothing but an idle thought of mind lying in bed listening to the radio one night.
I for one will be pleased if he does re-join us. I know he had that sudden dip in form in the latter part of the 2005/6 season when he clearly had some fairly serious mental health problems. He came back strong and was an absolute lion in the Stade de France against Barcelona in the Champions League Final, scoring our goal and leading by example.
I loved his constant chanting of the word “together!” in the team huddle that became a familiar part of our pre-match routine before each match in which he played. I thought he brought the very best out of Kolo Touré, who played his best football for us alongside Campbell. I’d be a lot more comfortable with Sol on the bench to back up the Terrible Twins of Thomas Vermaelen and Big Bad Bill Gallas.
If Campbell does re-join us you’d have to think that’ll be all she wrote for Philippe Senderos. I’ve always thought Senderos is a thoughtful and intelligent man and a real striver on the park, but not quite good enough for the very top level. I wish him only the best, either with us or at another club if Arsčne does decide to let him go.
Back to the vexed subject of bad weather postponements. It is isn’t often that I find myself lauding the super, soaraway Sun. Normally I wouldn’t use the rag to line my bins. I’ve got to make an exception this time though for their piece yesterday by Malcolm Clarke, chair of the Football Supporters’ Federation.
Common sense on this issue. We’ve swung FAR too far from criminal neglect of the safety of supporters to a ridiculous level of ultra-caution. If you’re as hacked off as I am with this and you live in the Borough of Islington then make sure you write to your local councillors to make your feelings clear. I do and I already have.
Whilst you’re doing that you might like to drop a line to your local London Assembly member and the Mayor of London. The Metropolitan Police Authority comes under the “umbrella” of the Greater London Authority (Mayor and Assembly). You can do this no matter where you live in Greater London. The police too I think are guilty of the same level of ultra-caution and lack of proportion. I know they have a difficult job but I think they and the council have both got the balance completely wrong in this case. Let’s tell them so – politely of course.
If you don’t live in Islington you can still write to the Council as somebody effected by its decisions as the licensing authority for Arsenal. Write to chief executive John Foster, London Borough of Islington, Chief Executive’s Office, Room GO7, Town Hall, Upper Street, Islington, London, N1 2UD.
By the time you read this I shall be somewhere over the Atlantic as I have a business trip to the USA for a few days. I shall be watching the Bolton game on Sunday at 11.00am local time. I shall be thinking of you all up there in the north-west. Bring home the three points with you please!
Keep the faith!