Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise
Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise

Win One For The Gimper

Illustration for article titled Win One For The Gimper

Is there anything more gratifying than having people take action after reading something you've written? God dictated the Ten Commandments to Moses and we've been breaking them ever since. Martin Luther nailed his 95 Theses to a church door and kicked off the Protestant Reformation. And I wrote a little throwaway joke at the expense of Eduardo's shattered leg—comparing him to Heather Mills—and the next thing you know Aston Villa's visiting hooligans serenaded the Arsenal faithful with the following ditty:

Eduardo Wwooooo
He had some silky skills
Now he walks like heather mills wwooooo

I have no proof that I inspired Aston Villa Nation, as Hank Steinbrenner and ESPN has dubbed them, but come on, you know yobs from Birmingham aren't clever enough to come up with such nuanced wit on their own. And let's face it, as evidenced by Leitch's globetrotting book tour—oh wait, I'm not sure he wants people to know about it— Deadspin 's reach is everywhere , even in industrial sinkholes like Birmingham, England .

Not surprisingly, the rallying cry among my people at Kinsale this weekend was "Win One For the Gimper" but after 90 minutes of another suck-ass Arsenal performance, I was praying for them to "Draw One for the Gimper", which is precisely what they did with the last kick of the game by, of all people, Niclas Bendtner .
"Lucky, lucky, Arsenal," chanted the pathetic Liverpool contingent at the bar while filling out applications for the Intertoto Cup.

Luck, of course, is in the eye of the beholder and considering that I could barely see after a 2am bender—or as it was known this weekend, a Bendtner—with Robert De Niro (hey, he was at the next table, I swear), I choose to chalk it up to pure genius. How ironic that the man to score the vital last second equalizer that kept the Gunners clinging to the penthouse railing of the Prem would be the very same Great Dane who was last seen leaving the field in Arsenal's Carling Cup debacle with a bloody gash over his nose? And who should provide the towering knock-down of Clichy's cross that allowed Bendtner to slot the ball home but Emmanuel Adebayour, the teammate who headbutted him for playing like "shit " against Tottenham ? If these two can kiss and make up, there's hope for Roger Clemons and Andy Pettitte.

Ok, they didn't exactly hug it out. When Bendtner ran toward the stands to celebrate his game , if not season-saving goal, amazingly only two Arsenal players followed him—the end of Rudy this was not—and Adebayour was not one of them. So, if nothing else, credit the horrific injury to Eduardo with helping the Gunners pull together as they try to avoid the seemingly inevitable Manchester United championship train that continues to leave Prem blood on the tracks.

This time it was Fulham's turn to be run over by a team so deep it didn't even need the Holy Trinity of Ronaldo, Rooney and Tevez to inter the hapless bunch of Great American Hopes (Dempsey, McBride, Eddie Johnson) deeper in their relegation grave. Chelsea, on the other foot, doesn't need United to derail them, they're doing such a good job of it themselves. Despite the Blues impressive 4-0 beatdown of West Ham that left them seven points behind Arsenal, they are imploding faster than Team Clinton. According to reports in England, Israeli coach Avram Grant "lost the locker room" after some of Chelsea's highly paid mercenaries expressed disgust with his tactics and preparation for last week's Carling Cup defeat against Spurs. Considering that it was only the third loss in his 35 games as coach, it's not exactly a freefall but Roman Ambramovich's standards of success are about as forgiving as George Steinbrenner's. If Chelsea fail to bring home some silverware this season, I won't be surprised to see Grant picking olives on a kibbutz next year.


The Blues, for their part, made light of their team blues. "We're grown men ," said their ringleader John Terry. "We sit in a room, discuss things, then go out, and they are forgotten. "

One thing that won't be forgotten is a certain crutch-sporting Crozillian who will no doubt inspire Arsenal on April 12 when they visit ManU in the title showdown . I can only pray that the Gunners still have a leg to stand on by then.