No other fixture ruffles my fighting cock feathers quite like a north London derby.
Tottenham v Arsenal games gone by have illustrated how highs and lows of a season long rollercoaster can be swept away, changed significantly for good or for worse, within two individual 90 minute matches.
The word “Arsenal” will always conjure bile bubonic memories for me.
Whether it is a monkey faced Keown bellowing foully into the deflated horse shaped head of Ruud van Nistelrooy after a failed penalty attempted, Robert Pires plotting a penalty robbery by succumbing to thin air and dramatically throwing himself to the floor with all the theatrical prowess of a Hollyoaks episode, or more recently Jack Wilshere.
I do and will forever hate the Arsenal, a team that inadvertently dictate my life. A team that has done and will forever taint my opinion of people I meet. Anyone in red is met reservedly with caution and cynicism with the underlying doubt in my mind that this individual will break into my house, shag my girlfriend and defecate in my fridge all done whilst donning an Arsenal shirt with the name “Campbell” emblazoned upon it.
Arsene Wenger the epitome of all things evil and so often Spurs nemesis, my nemesis. The unrelenting slayer of past Spurs managers and the creator of one Christian Gross, a tortuous period in my derby lifetime has now relinquished somewhat with a recently resurgent Spurs and Arsenal demise.
With every arduous “I did not see it”, bottle kicked in comedic anger and questionable sleeping bag worn, my inner self rejoices once more that footballing good and not evil was bestowed upon me.
Sulzeer Jeremiah Campbell, or c*** to you and me. A man once blessed with the adulation of an adoring following, a man once profoundly held in high esteem by all of White Hart Lane.
All know of what unfathomable sin he was to commit but perhaps the biggest crime of all was to be his befuddlement and bemusement at the subsequent abhorrent reaction from his once beloved followers.
You are “Tottenham through and through” are you not Mr Campbell?
Did you expect us to give you our blessing as you defected to the scum, perhaps a testimonial held at the Lane as each and every one of us could personally give you the send off that you so, so deserve. Maybe on your exit you could take with you the 14 inch blade lodged between my shoulder blades you so kindly put there.
This most inglorious figure of hate shall never be surpassed.
Satan’s exodus left a gaping, angry void in my life, leaving me hysterically pronouncing any new incoming centre back sharing visual similarity would, “please god”, make the betrayal meaningless. Alton Thellwell (remember him?) and Anthony Gardner both proving my frenetic ranting fruitless.
Then one day the saviour was born, cleansing my heart, filling it with love and happiness for 13 blissful years, a lesson in loyalty to all and in particular to the Judas, soulless cunt that went before.
Long live the King!
Every Saturday my hatred for the Arsenal is drip fed more antagonising fodder. An incoherent at best Paul Merson, stumbling through the English language as if he were attempting to skip around Younes Kaboul after a day on the sauce. Mispronouncing all but one tenth of footballer’s names, as Jeff and the boys laugh and chortle at this “cheeky chappy” with all of his “cor blimey guvnor” rhyming slang and broken English.
To make the challenge of watching this fool all the more tedious, chances are he’ll be sat next to Glaswegian lesbian Charlie Nicholas, not nice to look and even worse to listen too.
I look forward to each North London derby as much as I fear it. Never quite sure what deep lying torrent of emotions will be evoked. The potential of a scandalous decision, a defensive mix up or a Jack Wilshere goal, rendering my body a shaking wreck of a shell of a man, cursing this Tottenham curse that I so love.
As well as evoking, each game drives deeper and deeper a cocktail of emotion into my sub consciousness accompanying deep seated memories, good and bad, of old enemy games gone by. All the while knowing that this inverted toxicity will come back the next time we meet, rearing its head uglier, thicker and fuller like a satanic Tony Adams and Martin Keown love child.
The ensuing 90 minutes of battle with the old foe will prove to be a long arduous, emotion sapping, physical examination rife with a melee of incident, action and talking point, for both fan and player.
All I hope for is that the boys in lilywhite aspire to show as much passion and heart as the Yid Army following them, if they do then white will be victorious over red.
Good will triumph over evil.