Nutty Nige - I'll be meeting the legend tomorrow
I was sitting around yesterday wondering what the hell would I be able to write about today. There was so little about that I considered whether I should bother. When I logged on to the internet this morning I was presented with one of God's own miracles -a story from Heaven. God bless you, Danny Murphy. At last someone has spoken out about the thuggery of English footballers, encouraged by English managers:
What an absolute breath of fresh air this is. Naturally the gnarled old pros have been lining up to say what nonsense they think Murphy is talking - the irony of listening to Dirty Danny Mills having a go at Murphy on Sky this afternoon was not lost on me (Mills will forever be remembered by me for being made to look a twat by Thierry Henry, on the touchline right underneath my East Stand seat at Highbury). Stoke City's chairman has once again decided that it is unfair to talk of his club as a dirty team. He said "Stoke are no dirtier than any other team." I think the facts speak for themselves on this - Stoke are dirtier than most sides.
It's interesting that it has taken the outspoken views of an Englishman to actually get the papers taking this seriously. Can you imagine if someone from those softies at Arsenal had come out with the same comments? Danny Murphy, I applaud you, and you should be lauded from the rafters for showing such courage in speaking out on behalf of the talented footballers in the Premier League. Let's hope that the Fulham skipper has now focused attention properly on the disgraceful play endorsed by certain managers, and that the FA and referees will take proper notice. Perhaps, if they do, we will have seen the end of the leg-breaking challenges that have been prevalent since Martin Taylor got away with, effectively, ending Eduardo's Arsenal career. What's more likely, however, is that Murphy will be charged by the FA for his comments - and that would just about sum the whole thing up.
Tomorrow night is the annual Dover Gooners Legends Dinner. Over the years our guest speakers have been Perry Groves, Charlie George, Terry Neill, Sammy Nelson, Eddie Kelly and Bob Wilson. Tomorrow we are welcoming one of our finest full-backs, Nigel Winterburn. Nutty was one of the most under-rated players of any generation - his two substitute international appearances were a criminal waste of a fine defender - a better footballer than Stuart Pearce, and as for Graeme Le Saux, enough said. Having had so many of the "older" generation in recent years, it will be interesting to listen to a man who spans the Graham and Wenger eras.
Since we began our fundraising dinners in 2004 the Dover Gooners have raised thousands of pounds for Arsenal's charities of the season, and "our" charity, The Willow Foundation. In the last two years we have been concentrating all our fund-raising on Willow (hence the advert at the top of the page) and we hope tomorrow's raffle of Arsenal memorabilia will bring another bumper donation. More information on Dover Gooners can be found at www.dovergooners.com.
The next blog will be on Sunday evening, with a bit of a report on Nutty Nige's question and answer. I'd better get my suit out...