MS Paint Match Report: Arsenal regain some dignity as Manchester United beat them at Emirates Stadium.
Hello my lovelies! How long has it been since some proper MS Paint reporting? I’ve missed you too, but as they told me when I first joined McBannister’s Time-Travel Travel Agency, “Time travel is a full-time job that involves surprisingly little travel.” Now that I’ve been fired for stealing Napoleon’s cookies, though, I can get back to what really matters: doodles of footballers!
A long time ago in a Trafford far far away, Arsenal lost to Manchester United eight goals to two. It was a dark time for the Gunners, their worst start to the Premier League in I can’t be bothered to look up how many years and the lowest point in Arsene Wenger’s career (thus far…gulp). Since that August (and august, punz) defeat Arsenal have clawed their way back to semi-consistent form and back up the table, now in fourth ahead of Chelsea on games won.
A few weeks ago they faced their worst nightmare Manchester United again, this time at home. They still lost, but only by two goals to one, a huge improvement over the Score-That-Must-Not-Be-Tallied. I watched it happen, and recorded certain events for posterity.
First of all, The Fat Sikh was there! Hey guy!
Some context: The Fat Sikh is what I call a particular camera-friendly United fan whom I have seen in the stands many many times, notably the fabled 8-2. He always seems to be having a good time and is probably a fun dude. I also love him as a symbol for today’s globalized world and the game’s international, cross-cultural appeal. That there are Sikhs in Manchester and moreover that there are Sikhs in Manchester who are United superfans just strikes me as something pretty magical and a hopeful statement about the future of humanity in the age of terrorism and racism and imperial war in the Middle East and tension with the rising economic powers of China and India and all the negative fear-mongering panic-inducing stuff we always read about in newspapers. It’s ok guys: the Fat Sikh is there to cheer for Manchester United. Feel better? Because I do.
The game was good, the goals were all well-taken and it was fun to watch everyone play. Not everyone was having fun though. Case in point, Theo Walcott:
Even worse Theo, it’s Saturday. He bravely leaped with outstretched toe for a ball flying in and collided with fellow brave leaper Anders Lindegaard, slamming his face right into the ground as he fell. I’m pretty sure he literally passed out for a minute or two there, with Lindegaard trying to prod him awake and then calling the medics over urgently. Fortunately he came to after a little bit and turned out fine, finishing out the rest of the game without playing much worse than his endearingly bad average.
And then, of course, Wenger made that substitution. Star of the game and creator of captain Robin van Persie’s goal Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain came off, and Russian fan scapegoat Andrei Arshavin came on to unprecedented stadium-wide booing. The poor little elf later failed to track back once, a mistake that led to United’s winning goal.
More importantly though, and I say this as someone with a fair bit of disdain for “meme faces” or whatever they’re called, Van Persie’s face in reaction to the substitution literally looked almost exactly like this:
BUT WAIT, THERE’S MORE! Arsene’s reaction to RVP’s reaction was, again, literally, this face:
“Life imitating art” was never so unsettling.
The best moment of the match, though, had nothing to do with any of the other talking points of the game. At the edge of United’s penalty box, Aaron Ramsey and Wayne Rooney collided as they both jumped for a aerial ball. It looked like Ramsey’s shoulder hit Rooney’s tramp-stamp area aka lower back. Ramsey and United goalkeeper/dreamboat Anders Lindegaard helped Rooney recover by London Bridging him as Patrice Evra looked lustily on.
Let us draw the curtain of charity over the rest of the scene.
Image via Well Offside.