Last week the three Arsenal statues were unveiled to the general bemusement of everyone. The identities of the trio of greats to be immortalised in bronze was kept secret until the very last minute but nobody was remotely surprised to see the distinguished features of Herbert Chapman bearing down outside the Emirates as the first choice. The man figuratively laid down the foundations of what the club represented; by creating the W-M formation he gave the club its first major successes and established the ethos of style and class that is still associated with the North London club today. He also revolutionised football.
The latter two choices of Thierry Henry and Tony Adams however caused something of a stir and prompted many, many questions.
Why was the ’71 double side over-looked? Why wasn’t Wenger given equal credit to Chapman for essentially echoing his achievements in the modern age? Why is a renowned cheat in Henry being honoured? And how do Irish Gunners feel about this? Also, why does it look more like Papa Bouba Diop? And finally, why isn’t the Adams sculpture holding one arm in the air for off-side and where the hell are his donkey ears?
Sadly their errors in judgement are now set in stone so to speak and are fated to be forever leant against by cockneys tucking in to their over-priced southern excuse for pre-match chips.
Here at the Cutter though we have our own suggestions for further commemorative football busts, starting with a genuine one we believe should have commissioned instead of Terry Henry or the drink-driving renaissance man.
The image of Charlie lying prostate with exhaustion and glee is burned indelibly into FA Cup folklore. The 20-year had just scored the winner in the final against Liverpool – to secure the double no less – and his first thought was to lie on the Wembley turf and beckon his team-mates like a hippy Christ. Not only would this make an original statue (how many commemorated figures are lying down?) it would pay due homage to the great 71 team. It would also look cool as fuck outside any stadium.
Pickles the dog
The mutt made himself world famous in 1966 by sniffing out the stolen Jules Rimet trophy whilst out for an afternoon walkies. He later starred in a film called The Spy With A Cold Nose outbilling Eric Sykes and June Whitfield. Sadly poor Pickles perished one year later when he choked on his own lead while chasing a cat.
Gone but never forgotten he should stand in stone above a plinth outside FA headquarters, his cold nose forever sniffing for lost gold.
We’re no engineers but surely there is a way of erecting a statue that appears from ground level to be levitating? If so the ideal candidate has to be Houchen eternally re-enacting his fantastic leveller against Spurs in the 87 cup final. This would look the business outside the Ricoh Stadium, ideally with a bronzed Chris Hughton alongside him – 5 Star ‘tache and all – bellowing with horror.
William Webb Ellis
Widely acknowledged as the innovator of rugby Ellis would make a self-deprecating sartorial statement for any visitors to Stoke’s Brittania Stadium. There could even be a plaque at the bottom where Tony Pulis personally thanks the man responsible for retaining the Potters in the top flight.
A gargoyle/Gerry Francis
Francis remains a icon at Loftus Road for taking them to their highest ever league placing in the 1970s with his marauding runs from midfield. After eleven years service as a player he returned as manager in the early-nineties. He is the ideal candidate should QPR ever wish to emulate their London neighbours Fulham and Arsenal in erecting a permanent tribute to one of their all-time greats (unbeknownst to many Jacko played a full season for the Cottagers just after his Bad tour).
The bonus for new owner Tony Fernandes is that no sculptor need be commissioned by the club to immortalise the man with the bog-brush hair. A simple trip to the local salvage yard should suffice to pick up a dilapidated gargoyle at a fraction of the cost.