Censorious Arsenal Back In Action

By Kevin Whitcher

Wenger Out banners banned at Bate Borisov

This seasonís Annual General Meeting will be held shortly. At the 2016 meeting, a question was submitted referencing the behavior of Arsenalís stewards at the Manchester City away game in May 2016, in which all banners going into the stadium were examined and removed on the say so of the stewards concerned. The club denied this in spite of photographic evidence of Arsenal stewards examining banners that were not allowed into the stadium.

Belarusian Gooners hold up a banner that didnít make it past the search

In response to the question and my informing him afterwards that he had not been accurate in his denial, Ivan Gazidis bristled at the accusation that the club were censorious and could be compared to North Korea.

In further subsequent discussions with supportersí liaison officer (and former RedAction mainman and AST board member) Mark Brindle, it was confirmed that banners that did not break the ground regulations were ok, as long as they were not likely to cause a disturbance.

However, it looks like nothing has changed. At Arsenalís game against Bate Borisov last week, Arsenalís travelling stewards were examining what was going into the ground, and in co-ordination with the local security, there was a decision made to allow Wenger In and In Wenger We Trust banners into the stadium, but not banners that called for change. Details can be seen on the Twitter account of Russian Gooner Ivan Mercury.

Certainly there some stewards that travelled on behalf of the club to Belarus for the match. And according to the tweets on Ivan Mercís account, they were actively screening the visiting supporters (Ivan has told me this has been corroborated by others), in the same style of operation witnessed at the Etihad. As at Manchester City, it was the local stadium stewards that actually did the physical confiscating. Significantly, they were only confiscating anti-Wenger banners. The conclusion is that the Bate stewards were under instruction to weed out such banners, and allow pro-Arsene ones in. Where could such an instruction have come from? Do you think that Bate would have issued such instruction without a request from Arsenal? Draw your own conclusions. Mine havenít changed since the Etihad incident in spite of all the words of denial emanating from Highbury House.

The club say one thing and the reality is the opposite. It seems to me that Ivan Gazidisí denial that the club operate like a North Korean dictatorship is just so many hollow words. And letís face it, he has history for saying things that donít actually turn out to be true. Iíll do a list one day and make an article out of it.

So, nothingís changed. Arsenal claim freedom of speech is allowed, but their stewards seem to be under instruction to ensure the opposite when the views are those they donít want to see expressed by fans.

7th October 2017 08:45:47


Comments and Reaction

User comments on this article are now closed. If you want to continue the debate, why not do so on the Gooner Forum.

Ebor Gooner  11:31am 7th Oct 2017

Not surprising really - the message is that it's more of the same old, same old. I'm just marking time, waiting for a change of regime. I suspect many others are the same. - Post No. 110163

Cyril  12:42pm 7th Oct 2017

The stewards have a tough job. Spoke to one at home game recently and he told me they had to let all the German fans in without scrutiny. Overwhelmed. It doesn't bear thinking about in this climate. This kind of censorship will infuriate. - Post No. 110165

mbg  13:51pm 7th Oct 2017

Good piece Kevin, that's more like it rather than that last piece of prune diarrhoea from bidet man. On the say so of the stewards ? I think we we all know on who's say so it really was, a wrinkly old past it no good manager and who knows it so has turned dictator, it'll be batons next Barcelona style, to keep the proper fans who aren't afraid to say and tell it like it is in line and all on the orders of the Furher wenger. We want the dictator out. - Post No. 110166

Bard  18:06pm 7th Oct 2017

Kev surely Ivan's not telling porkies? God forbid, this club has values or so Wenger was waffling on about them. Ok I can't quite work out what they are but I'm assured we do have them. Apparently one of them we didn't bargain for is 'Thou shalt not diss our esteemed leader'. It doomed to failure because they can ban what they like. Once the results turn the booing will start. Its only a matter of time. There is always a silver lining. Is it too far a stretch to suggest we could be sponsored by North Korea next season under the banner 'Always stay loyal to your leader" - Post No. 110171

mbg  18:37pm 7th Oct 2017

Bard, the North Korea stadium, got a ring to it that, and instead of the large fifty foot Arsenal emblems around the outside we'd have Fifty foot emblems of Kim Jong looking serious and wenger grinning and everyone would have to get their hair cut like them. Kim Jong wenger out. - Post No. 110172

mbg  20:18pm 7th Oct 2017

Look on the bright side though, if Kim Jong could have his Cousins, Uncles, and Brother tortured and killed what would he not do to the Failure wenger. - Post No. 110174

Perryashburtongroves  10:38am 8th Oct 2017

Absolutely dreadful. Typical modern day Arsenal showing no respect to the fans. You have to laugh at the club as they seem to think that a few banners are a risk at away game but letting in thousands of pissed up ticketless Germans with flares and smoke bombs into a home game is perfectly fin. - Post No. 110175

mbg  21:29pm 8th Oct 2017

It all just goes to show/prove (not that any is needed) just how insecure wenger is mentally, any decent manager on that dough would forget/ignore the banners, and prove the doubters wrong or at least try to, and shut them up, but he never ever does, ever, even for a short time, the simple reason being he can't, he doesn't know how to, he hasn't it in him, and the skinny weasel knows it hence the Stalin tactics. wenger out. - Post No. 110176

Yes its Ron  10:16am 9th Oct 2017

Arsenal s values wont tolerate such uncouth gestures such as puerile banner waving etc. Its an honourable and laudable reaction by our wonderful, brave stewards to the remaining unwashed section of the support who continue to smear the club and disrespect its methods and sustainability. Hopefully, these types will soon all begone. Our cleansing program this last 12 years has i feel worked really well, but theres a clear need to step up the purges. I feel a significant price hike is needed to rid us of the stragglers and i intend to write to the Club asking them to raise match day tickets by 50% and Season tickets by 40%. Would such people heckle and make a noise and take banners etc to a conventional theatre? Of course they wouldnt. Well, they shouldn't demean our theatre either. Our regular attendees and customers have business meetings to deal with, meals to eat and families to cater for on match days and they already have to put up with the irritant of the events on the pitch when sound business sense would dictate that we should be running business conventions on it on Sat afternoons and not football. I genuinely fear for our patrons and their remaining loyalty as customers unless we quell the hooligan element who clearly still exist. Our continued success must always be put before the shenanigans of this mindless fraternity who still blight the Club. I for one have absolute faith in Mr Gazadis and Mr Kroenke to ensure sanity prevails at Arsenal, but we do need far larger quiet zones though i feel, as reading, either on Kinders or paper backs on Saturdays and especially Sunday afternoons is still often disrupted to quite alarming levels. It ll come though, the future is red and white, lets all rejoice as we go, go, go and rejoice to the rafters for Wengo, Wengo. - Post No. 110178

CORNISH GOONER  10:56am 9th Oct 2017

Nice one Ron, you old cynic. Time for the reintroduction of "Ohhh Arsenal Wenger!" chants. Silly me, it's the great unwashed that do the chanting isn't it? - Post No. 110180

Gaz  12:32pm 9th Oct 2017

Good stuff Ron. - Post No. 110183

Arseneknewbest  15:36pm 10th Oct 2017

The huge irony here is that Belarusians, who have the misfortune to be governed by one of the most repressive regimes in the world, are able to express an interest in a foreign entity i.e. the Arsenal, only to discover that the club wishes to clamp down on their personal freedom of expression and to bully them in order to shut up. Makes you wonder what Glasnost was all about. I hate the idiots that have killed our club. - Post No. 110189

mbg  17:44pm 10th Oct 2017

Happy Birthday big Tone a proper Legend, a proper player, only for him (and others) TOF wouldn't have won half his accolades, (thank god for George Graham)and he still never had him about the place in any capacity (and we all know why) TA is still remembered fondly today and always will be, wenger when he slithers away will just be a bad dream forgotten within weeks. - Post No. 110191

Arseneknewbest  18:53pm 11th Oct 2017

Just been reading some reviews of '89', yes a new documentary about THAT season. Looks like GG features prominently. I assume, on the contrary, that our runny nosed, zip fiddling idiot of a current manager will be nowhere to be seen. - Post No. 110192

markymark  20:17pm 11th Oct 2017

Where is the eggscrutiating Badarse and his Pal the Eggcremental Toady? Are both now Cyber dead? kaput? Fallen off their mortal coil? I miss them..... errr not! - Post No. 110193

TOOAW  22:51pm 11th Oct 2017

Yaaaaaawwwwwwn. Wake me up when something exciting on here happens. Yaaaaaaaawwwwn. BBA. - Post No. 110195

markymark  8:15am 12th Oct 2017

Toady = BBA ? That fits I remember the little tosser BBA dishing out threats across the forum but was then silenced by a similar threat back. It did amuse how he suddenly went silent. Hereís a question for you seeing that youíre bored and failed to answer questions on 4 separate occasions . Do you support scenario 1 or 2? Reasons why you agree or disagree would be helpful for our understanding. 1: Arsenal are taken over by a new owner/s with promise of greater transfer pot , potential star player purchases and plan to enter the higher echelon of European clubs. Wengo is put on notice with imminent risk of dismissal. 2: Kronke gains 100% ownership and leverages out the club to fund American investments. He announces Wengo has a job until he decides to retire and a transfer pot of 75m - Post No. 110196

Scruff  9:52am 12th Oct 2017

I thought it was quite obvious tooaw was bba the use of the word 'son' was giveaway. Anyway now we all know who you are any chance of answering the question? No! Didn't think so - Post No. 110197

mbg  10:25am 12th Oct 2017

markymark, I was going to say they'll be back after the next regulation win over mediocre opposition with hard on's, or when the buckfast runs out, I guess we got our answer. wenger out. - Post No. 110198

markymark  7:28am 13th Oct 2017

Poor old BBA (toady) Squeak , Jamerson and Badarse. They hated how we played before Wengo - all confessed to this. What will they do ? A we celebrate the Ď89 documentary . - Post No. 110208

Issue #269 - Out Now!

Gooner Editorial

15th January 2018

Being muscled off the ball by Bournemouth is like being mugged by your grandma

Online Ed: Another poor Arsenal display on the road just another signpost as we near the end of the Wenger era