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About arab_joe

  • Rank
    Third Division Reserve
  • Birthday 09/05/1985

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  • Location
    Abu Dhabi, UAE
  • My Team
    Dundee Utd

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  1. I'm happy staying in Division B - don't want to get promoted by default (or mauled each week next season...).
  2. Division B, Round 18 - @keptie defeats arab_joe. One stupid mistake (in my defence I was on a Zoom call at the time) saw me lose my Queen early on and I had absolutely no way back. Lesson learned!
  3. Division B, Round 17 - Arab_joe wins by checkmate over hammysgetinpumpd / @101. Good game - I had a solid start and managed to isolate one of his bishops; then wobbled and he grabbed one of my knights for free; but I had enough to get the win in the end. Hopefully getting close to safety from relegation (especially as I am circling the drain in my other game...).
  4. Division B, Round 16: Arabjoe wins by the resignation of Markf268 (@true_rover). I threw away a couple of early pawns then went after his Queen - somehow managed to turn the table and (just) ensure that he didn't get a pawn to my side of the board... Really good game. The boys have delivered when the relegation pressure is on - Hamiltonesque.
  5. Yep, I didn't see that coming at all - well played. After 3 defeats in a day, I may well be facing automatic relegation from Division B...
  6. Yep, that one move broke me! Well played. Well played - another slog but you chipped away until it was inevitable!
  7. Apologies for the delay in updating - but @arab_joe defeated @NotThePars - it was a race to see who could get a pawn upgraded quicker, and I won out. Good game. My other game is ongoing... (although I'm down to 3 pieces and circling the drain).
  8. This is what most worries me - we had a wage bill of c. £4,000,000 when we were in the Championship - so, even ignoring Shankland and Pawlett, we are paying some substantial salaries to some very average footballers. The more I think about it, the angrier I become thinking of Reynolds and Connolly and their contracts - why on earth did we feel the need to tie them down to such long contracts!? Good to know! Haha, I only get the chance to check P&B before work - so with the time difference I can see why that looks like I am a bit of a weirdo posting at 4am... Still way too much. Most over rated player in Scotland. He's shite I've seen hundreds of shite players at United over the past 25 years - Shankland is not one of them. The worst thing about Pawlett is that, in very short bursts, he has shown some incredible ability - if he could have stayed 100% fit he could have been a fantastic signing. In the 6-2 game he was phenomenal. I totally agree that the centre-back area needs improvement (anyone who has watched United in the past 18 months can see that) - but realistically we are not going to be able to get Reynolds or Connolly off the wage bill, so if we bring in another Premiership calibre player then we will be spending a huge chunk of our budget on centre-backs. A terrible situation, completely of our own doing - questions have to be asked about giving any 32 year old a 3 year deal, never mind Mark Reynolds... I still hope that Lewis Neilson will replace one of the two of them, but let's see...
  9. If Hoti was not good enough to come on when we needed a centre-mid then, quite simply, he should not be taking up a space on our bench. I thought he was bought with the future in mind, which is fine, but then don't put him on the bench - especially as yesterday must have destroyed his confidence. I mean, imagine Connolly being chosen to go on instead of you... That would mean four centre-backs on big wages. Great in an ideal world, but surely given our financial situation we would be far better off using that money elsewhere in the squad? In relation to the bold wording - if you are subtlely letting us know that we are in for a summer of intense disappointment, then please let us know sooner rather than later so that we can adjust our expectations... Budgeting for 10th place in the Premiership would have been sensible... so no chance we did that. I would guess we are paying higher wages than every side outside the Old Firm, Hibs and Aberdeen. Can't argue with that - Saturday's second half was disappointing but good to look at the bigger picture. The other side of that coin is that worse use of the players earlier in the season could have seen us sitting far, far closer to the bottom of the league... There is 0% chance of us beating both Celtic and Aberdeen. 0%. St Mirren's ridiculous penalty award, coupled with our ridiculous substitution, have killed that pipe dream. Now time to ensure that we finish 7th. Neither do we. Neither do we. Neither do we...
  10. As it was happening, I could see so clearly that it would be the turning point of the match - but even I didn't realise just what a swing that would be. We were lucky to escape with a point. Very disappointing to think that Mellon would not try out something a bit more inventive - i.e. bring Luke Bolton on, or Florent Hoti, or basically anyone except Connolly. Christ, I would have been happier to see Shankland drop into centre-mid and bring Nicky Clark on up top. Literally anything. I still think the guy has, overall, done a great job in difficult times. But yesterday was a really disappointing, self-inflicted loss of two points at a point in the season where we really should be putting everything into getting into the top 6. I know that he is cautious, and that has generally worked well, but we are well on course to stay up and were a goal up against a team that has not won a game since 9 January and has not scored since 30 January - going to 5 at the back was embarrassing. If Connolly is a better option in centre-mid than Hoti then Hoti must be absolutely atrocious... There's no chance we will find anyone willing to take him off our hands - he is too old, too well paid, too bad at football. We are stuck with him until 2023. Edwards was excellent yesterday. He has been outstanding since his return from injury. He is our best centre-half by some distance - it is just a pity that the other two duds are signed up for so long (I cannot believe we gave Connolly an extension and that we gave Reynolds such a long contract at his age - having anyone signed up until they're 35 is a massive gamble) so he has virtually no chance of a decent pairing next season. I also thought that Liam Smith and Benji were good, so there is the backbone of a quality defence... With regards to the top 6 run-in, yesterday ended any feint hope - St Mirren now 4 points and 10 goals better than us, with Celtic and Aberdeen next up - so we need two wins and St Mirren to pick up a maximum of 1 point. It isn't happening. Makes the Connolly substitution even more frustrating.
  11. A really daft blunder from me, that final move! Well played @101! Thanks for the game @true_rover!
  12. In Division B: @arab_joe defeated @Eednud. Game was over before it really got started - no strategy, just fluke on my behalf. In the Cup: @arab_joe defeated @NotThePars. An absolutely epic battle - that 960 format threw up a really odd board!
  13. Thanks, that makes sense - the commentator on DUTV implied that the rules had changed to allow offsides in your own half, which is what Sean Dillon was so perplexed by. It appears it was the commentator's wording that was poor, not SD's knowledge of the rules of the game! There were a number of Arabs, both on here and on Twitter/Facebook, that were calling for Micky Mellon to walk after the St Mirren and Motherwell defeats. To say otherwise is factually incorrect. There may well have been a number of legitimate reasons that fans had for being frustrated (in particular the inclusion of the 3 strikers every game) but, as I said at the time, it was majorly premature to be calling for him to go then... He is a great footballer. Last season, I thought he was just a great/clinical striker - but seeing him step up to the Premiership, it is clear he is so much more. He could play centre-half, centre-mid or on the wing - and still be a standout. I genuinely think he has the ability to go to the very top, a la Stuart Armstrong or Andy Robertson. The goal that won us the game and almost knocked us out of European contention (because it put Celtic in the driving seat and would push the European space to the Scottish Cup) - thankfully for us Celtic bottled it at Inverness and we got to go to Wroclaw... No, I (and Sean, it would appear) misinterpreted what the commentator was saying. 4 home games on the bounce against bottom 8 opposition - by the end of that run they should be comfortably ahead of us. But it is great to be in the conversation for 6th at this stage of the season.
  14. What a huge difference a fortnight can make - a couple of weeks ago half the Arabs on here were calling for Micky Mellon to walk before we inevitably finish in the bottom two; and now we are genuinely discussing whether we can get into the top 6... For what little it is worth, the run ins (assuming the Livi won't be caught and that Killie are too far behind already) are as follows: DU - 6th with 34 pts from 29 games. Rangers (A), Killie (A), Celtic (H), Aberdeen (H). St M - 7th with 33 from 27 games. Hamilton (H), Livi (H), Motherwell (H), County (H), Rangers (A), Hamilton (A). St J - 8th with 30 from 28 games. Celtic (H), Motherwell (A), Hamilton (A), Hibs (H), County (H). Motherwell - 9th with 28 from 28 games. St J (H), St M (A), Hibs (A), Livi (H), Killie (A). St Mirren must be big favourites - especially with these next 4 games being at home. But who knows? If Livi play like they did yesterday then they might be dragged back... He did indeed - I think he wanted to bring most of his ICT team down the road. Luckily Darren Dods was a far bigger success than the other player he was able to lure away, David Proctor... This. It is scary how many Arabs ignored this sentiment when we were on a poor run a few weeks back - but the reality is that we need to consolidate in our first season back. Any survival is a success. Micky Mellon - one step ahead of the curve! All becoming crystal clear with Sir Lawrence's 3 goals in the past 2 games. He really is a special footballer. Yesterday he was absolutely exceptional - not just with the two goals (the second of which was an absolute beauty) but his overall play. When we went down to 10 men he was all over the pitch - and continues to be one of our most effective defenders at set pieces. It bewilders me that analysts can't see how much more he brings to the team - it seems that every time I listen to the BBC they're going on about how his value has fallen like a stone this season, simply because he isn't on course for a 40 goal season. Is that right, that you can be offside in your own half!? I heard the commentator say that, but had never heard that the rule had changed... But yes, Sean is great - and I love that he doesn't even pretend to be neutral. I go through stages of thinking that Harkes is a good Premiership player - but he definitely has not shown the consistency needed to make the step up from United (or to even play every week here). I would imagine that Celtic were watching Siegrist and/or Shankland, and this Harkes chat is a red herring. That being said, his pass to Shankland yesterday was Zidane-esque. As was his goal against St Mirren. So maybe Celtic are on to something...
  15. Darren Dods was a Levein signing, according to his Arab Archive profile (link). Another signing that was met with very little excitement but went on to be a very solid player. Signed at 32 years old and still went on to play 100 games. Kalvanes was a fantastic player - and will always be fondly remembered, in my mind at least, for his performance in one of my favourite games of all time - the 2008 League Cup semi-final at Tynecastle against Aberdeen. Short sleeves and gloves, and a cracking header to put us ahead (in my mind it was him who scored the equaliser but, according to the match report I just read, that was the aforementioned Darren Dods). I enjoyed the Brewster interview (like I do all of their interviews, to be honest) but there is something that still sits a bit uneasy with me with regards to him coming back as manager. I don't know exactly what it was, but it felt very "off" very quickly - I think it may have been his insistence on always picking Stuart Duff (who I still consider to be one of the most technically awful players to have ever pulled on the tangerine jersey) and also the fact that he couldn't get anything out of Lee Miller when he clearly had such potential. That home game against Inverness (link) when we missed a penalty and then absolutely crumbled is one of the worst performances at Tannadice I have ever had the misfortune of witnessing. Is my memory playing tricks on me, or did McCall do something similar before our preseason game against Everton that summer - like introducing Barry Robson, Derek McInnes, Mark Kerr, Scott Paterson and Collin Samuel and all of the others involved in that summer's "new dawn"? It is a funny thing, the difference that a game can make - but after the County game (and, I guess, these midweek results) suddenly the fixtures and table both look far better from our perspective. Kilmarnock now lost 6 on the bounce and face Rangers next; County lost 3 of their last 4 and face Hibs next; and Hamilton are away the next three weeks to Motherwell, Aberdeen and Hibs... going to be a very interesting few weeks.
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