Pulses race on Matchday 5

I must say I always enjoy it when a German club comes to town. They invariably bring loads of fans, make lots of noise and have a cracking time. Marseille and Arsenal might still be in the driving seats in this group, but Dortmund’s win on Matchday 4* means they are very much back in it, and if that fact hasn’t been drummed into the team throughout this week in training then I’m a goalscoring Dutchman.

So while these things can occasionally be grindingly dull (the 0-0 against Marseille…) I can’t imagine for a second that tonight will tootle along serenely. To coin a tired old cliche, it’s a massive game and it’s no surprise that Wenger is retaining all the big guns. Not that Fulham on Saturday isn’t important – just that this one could be pivotal.

Great news too that Diaby returns from his latest injury hell. There’s no doubt he’s playing for his Arsenal career – maybe his whole career if things carry on like this – and fingers crossed that this latest comeback is the icing on the comeback cake [need better idiom – Ed].

It has all the ingredients of a cracker. Let’s hope it is a cracker.

*If there is an unlovelier and more sterile way to define a match, I need to know it. But then again, this is the Champions League containing mostly non-Champions, which only gets truly buzzing when it’s not a league anymore, so who am I kidding?

Fixtures from the golden olden days

Olden days

Intermittently, as some of you will know, I stumble across an Arsenal memory and stick it up on here. Last up was the Gunners shop price list from 1986, and today it’s the Fixture list from 1988-9 (note: the pdf is about 600k). I’m guessing I kept it for a reason. Can’t for the love of god think what that reason was…

It’s not enormously fascinating, though it did remind me of two words I’d not heard for over 20 years – ‘Mercantile Credit’ – and ticket prices on the back made me weep into my £10 Emirates meal deal. £5.50p to sit in the lower tier. I’m guessing north bank terracing was even cheaper – probably £4-£5.

Don’t get me started, it’ll set me off…