Bad refereeing calls and easy or home (Emirates Stadium) routes to the (Emirates) FA Cup Final, Arsenal’s FA Cup wins – attended by Emirates customers with 15,000 Emirates air-miles not Arsenal fans – are as dodgy as their FA Cup’s Winner’s watches.
If Prime Minister-elect Jeremy Corbyn is serious about smashing corporate fraud and injustice across British society, he could start by doing it at the football club he supports, Arsenal, who play their football at The Emirates’ stadium and now seemingly part-own ‘The Emirates’ FA Cup.
Early Saturday evening – the traditional 3pm kick-off time was long ago sold by The FA to the highest television bidder, Premier League Champions Chelsea succumbed 2-1 to an Arsenal side that had looked demoralised during much of the season.
True, in what could have been Arsene Wenger’s final match of a fantastic football club reign, The Gunners looked more up for it than they have all season yet, crucially, the game’s first goal was mired in controversy right in front of referee Anthony Taylor’s nose.
Arsenal’s Alexis Sanchez forced the ball forwards with both hands in what Gary Lineker described on the BBC as “basketball” and then there was a controversy over whether Arsenal were offside as Aaron Ramsey was about to score from an offside position putting Chelsea’s keeper off before Sanchez finished. Offside? Possibly not. Handball? Definitely.
Emirates who sponsor Arsenal happen to also sponsor The Emirates FA Cup following a 3-year sponsorship of The FA Cup in 2015 that is thought to be worth £10M per season to the Football Association – and is clearly worth a lot more via the coffers of Arsenal.
Arsene Wenger signed a 2-year contract extension this week but only if Emirates are planning to take over ‘sponsorship’ of The Premier League rather than the FA Cup will his dream of lifting the title again before he retires become a reality.
For the reality is that an aging Wenger, whose Gunners’ team relinquished their 20-year stay in The Champions League with a 5th place top flight finish this year, is being propped up by bought favouritism in England’s oldest domestic competition.
Surely it is a total conflict of interests that the Dubai-airline Emirates sponsor both Arsenal, since 2004 when The Gunners moved to The Emirates stadium, and The FA Cup, which became The Emirates-sponsored FA Cup in 2015?
Its no coincidence since that cosy dual-sponsorship arrangement was announced in 2015 – and work on the deal would have been arranged behind-the-scenes for a long time prior – Arsenal have won the FA Cup twice with some very strange refereeing calls.
On the 19th April, 2015, just a month before the Emirates FA Cup deal was announced, this perfectly good Mario Balotelli goal in the Semi-Final was ruled out ensuring The Gunners had an easy ride against Aston Villa, who finished 17th place in The Premier League that year instead of a tough game against high-flying Liverpool in 6th spot.
Like his Italian compatriot Chelsea manager Antonio Conte, the Italian international player himself was astounded at the call and took to Instagram to express his disgust:
That offside goal denied a perfectly good equalizer by Liverpool, who beat Arsenal in the 2001 Final and would have certainly given Arsenal a better game in the 2015 Final than the struggling Villa side that is now languishing in Championship mid-table obscurity.
As well as benefitting from their fixtures being made easier by calls in preceding matches, Arsenal benefitted directly from big – and importantly, wrong – calls in their own matches notably this opening goal that was wrongly disallowed in the FA Cup Semi-Final on April 23rd when The Sky Blues, unlike The Gunners, did not get the advantage with either Raheem Sterling’s goal or a penalty that could have been given to Sergei Aguero.
Yet the conspiracy theory doesn’t just end with bad refereeing calls benefitting Arsenal – it begins with the very FA Cup draw itself that appears fixed in The Gunners’ favour.
This season it was Arsenal’s ludicrously easy back-to-back Sutton United and Lincoln City draws in the traditionally more difficult 5th Round and Quarter-Final stages while Chelsea faced Manchester United. (The fact that all 8 Premier League teams remaining in the Last 16 draw conveniently avoided each other is material for another article…)
Before this season, when clearly the FA were responding to accusations of bias, it was the 11 home ties in the previous 13 draws which fans of rival clubs have long-railed at as a sign of favouritism and the clearing of a path of Arsenal to Wembley.
Sure, Arsene Wenger is a good man and and manager who doesn’t deserve the vitriol he receives from Piers Morgan and the Arsenal Fan TV idiots yet to have a competition – the world’s original and most-loved football competition no less, the pride and joy of English football – fixed by corporate forces is utter sacrilege of the beautiful game.
Wenger would have done well to bow out on the artificial high of his Chelsea victory after his most torrid season since he took England by storm yet this false victory convincing him to stay on might be setting the Frenchman up for an even greater future fall.
English football must be better than this FArsenal.
Arsenal Sacks Unai Emery After Defeat to Frankfurt
Arsenal has sacked manager Unai Emery following their loss at home to Frankfurt, according to ESPN.
Per the report, Emery’s position was untenable with senior figures at Arsenal reviewing his position with many believing he would be sacked prior to Sunday’s trip to Norwich, but Thursday’s loss seemed to be enough to make the move now.
Arsenal has been in the midst of their worst run in 27 years, going seven games without a win in all competitions.
The board at Arsenal had been supportive of Emery since the start of the season, and Emery has had a number of chances to find a fix to the problem, but he was unsuccessful in his attempts and the board had run out of patience and support for the former Paris Saint-German manager.
Emery’s baffling team selections have surprised players and staff, as well as his coaching, with glaring mistakes made with substitutions during Thursday’s loss to Frankfurt.
“Our most sincere thanks go to Unai and his colleagues who were unrelenting in their efforts to get the club back to competing at the level we all expect and demand,” Josh Kroenke said on behalf of the club’s board, according to a statement. “We wish Unai and his team nothing but future success.
“The decision has been taken due to results and performances not being at the level required. We have asked Freddie Ljungberg to take responsibility for the first team as interim head coach. We have full confidence in Freddie to take us forward. The search for a new head coach is underway and we will make a further announcement when that process is complete.”
“However long I oversee Arsenal for I will give everything I have to put smiles on faces again” Ljungberg said, via a statement on Twitter. We have a busy few weeks ahead and the team needs your support. Let’s get to work!”
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Cristiano Ronaldo Not Being Charged for Alleged Sexual Assault
Prosecutors have decided that they will not file criminal charges against international soccer superstar Cristiano Ronaldo for an alleged sexual assault incident from back in 2009.
Kathryn Mayorga claims that Ronaldo, who she says she met at Rain Nightclub in the Palms hotel, raped her in a Las Vegas hotel room back in 2009.
Mayorga claimed that Ronaldo invited her up to his penthouse suite to party and join him in a hot tub, and photos surfaced of the two hanging out in the nightclub earlier that evening.
Mayorga didn’t initially identify Ronaldo by name in her police report that described the alleged crime, and she later sued Ronaldo claiming that she later accepted a $375,00 payment in exchange for her silence.
Mayorga recently announced that she wants that agreement voided and then attempted to pursue a criminal case against Ronaldo.
The Clark County District Attorney’s Office claims that “the allegations of sexual assault against Cristiano Ronaldo cannot be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.”
According to TMZ Sports, prosecutors stated the following in regards to the alleged incident:
New York City Police Investigating Possible Hate Crime Directed At Megan Rapinoe
New York City police are investigation a possible hate crime directed towards United States Women’s Team superstar Megan Rapinoe, according to ESPN.
According to the report, posters featuring Rapinoe, who is gay, were defaced with derogatory slurs. The posters have since been scrubbed clean.
Rapinoe has been an advocate for gender equity and LGBTQ inclusion, and has drawn attention for her comments towards President Donald Trump.
Police said that the vandalism, which was discovered inside the Bryant Park subway station in midtown Manhattan on Monday, is currently being investigated by the New York Police Department’s Hate Crime Task Force.
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