Arseblog contains a wide variety of content for those who have mustered the strength to continue supporting Arsenal F.C in recent years. Founded in 2002 by Andrew Mangan, the blog provides news, podcasts, videos, and opinion posts on all things Arsenal. Mangan, a football writer for ESPN FC and Tifo Football (previously uMAXit Football), contributes to the blog daily.
He and his team work together to provide a more holistic view of Arsenal for the its oldest and newest fans, in addition to anyone interested in the current status of the club. News outlets often provide an objective view of the team because of reporters’ lack of support for the club. However, Arseblog is a representation of how the average supporter feels about a team that epitomizes the successes and failures of modern day soccer. Moreover, Mangan and his team provide an outlet for other supporters to be more invested in Arsenal. Many blogs that cover a single team do this, allowing supporters to feel as if they are part of the club as well. Thankfully, Arseblog’s different mediums of conveying opinions and news on Arsenal allow its supporters to find at least one way to further engage with the club and increase their sense of belonging to it.
Before I describe the content of this blog, it is important to highlight its longevity. Arseblog has existed for 16 YEARS. Mangan has continued to contribute to this outlet through the club’s greatest achievements and notable failures. Nevertheless, I have followed this Arsenal-related blog, along with others, early into my fandom. While most of those blogs stopped being updated as the club struggled to reignite itself, Mangan has respectfully provided supporters with new content throughout these years and deserves credit for his craft.
General layout of the Arseblog website
Standard Blog Posts
Mangan and Tim Stillman, a columnist for the blog, provide posts about the happenings of the club on and off the pitch. Stillman only posts once a week, but his pieces are often analytical and insightful on Arsenal’s current conflicts. One could compare his posts to those found on the “Opinion” section of newspapers. For instance, he recently discussed the beauty and importance of domestic cups, particularly the League Cup, before Arsenal lost to Manchester City during this season’s final. He claims that matches in the cup are entertaining because clubs would send their second-string (or even lower) teams into the competition, resulting in some frenzied matches. He then relives some of his favorite and worst memories of Arsenal in the tournament, including the 7-5 comeback win against Reading in 2012 and the loss to Birmingham City in the 2011 final. Lastly, he claims that the tournament has lost its “novelty” for Arsenal as the average age of its players increases.
Mangan, on the other hand, provides his audience with daily content – whether it be his match analyses, blog posts on different Arsenal topics, or podcasts (to be discussed soon). He posts under the name of “arseblog.” His posts resemble those that the reader would expect from a blog – informal and opinionated. However, each piece continues to provide valuable insight into the current events occurring at the club and beyond. Even during international breaks when club does not have any matches for a week, he manages to find something to write about. For instance, during a break in mid-February 2018, Mangan wrote about Arsenal’s oblivious administration with a manager that they have feared to let go for too long. The post discusses how Ivan Gazidis, the Chief Executive, is too fearful to let go of Arsene Wenger because the manager was one of the main reasons why he secured the job in the first place. Mangan claims that Gazidis will finally have more freedom with the club once Wenger leaves and be able to alter the recruitment process to help the team grow further.
Readers can interact with one another through comments replying to Mangan and Stillman’s blog posts. These comments allow conversations regarding Arsenal to continue and are known as “arses.” To post on the threads, users must make a free account affiliated with blog and agree to follow its terms and conditions.
Mangan also posts two weekly podcasts onto Arseblog. To this date, he has posted 463 episodes of Arsecast, the main podcast of the blog in which he brings in special guests to discuss the current status of the club. Arsecast Extra (217 episodes), on the other hand, is co-hosted with James McNicholas of Gunnerblog and is more interactive because listeners can submit questions to the hosts (@arseblog and @Gunnerblog). This provides supporters with an additional outlet to be a part of the greater conversation regarding Arsenal soccer. The standard Arsecast podcast, is more of an analytical report with other soccer pundits; however, listeners can still interact with the posts through comments.
For readers looking for a more comedic take on Arsenal, The Arsenal Gent posts a weekly review of Arsenal news. This unknown author claims to be born in Highbury in 1886 and posts sarcastic reports on “Woolwich Arsenal.” Yes, he reports on Arsenal as if it is the early 1900s and has renamed each player, making his posts more entertaining. In 2013, he posted a squad profile, turning most of the players into Englishmen or in the case of some players actually from England or Wales, international names. He continues to rename players, as we have recently signed Henrikh Mkhitaryan (Henry MacMillan) and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Peter O’Bannon).
Readers should appreciate the time he takes to develop characters. His recent “interview” with “Peter O’Bannon” takes a humorous approach on Aubameyang’s shenanigans at Borussia Dortmund and how he ended up in Arsenal. It is worth the read.
Arseblog is not your typical blog. Its additional content, including videos of matches/conferences, news, live blogs of matches, and more, make it a treasure chest of Arsenal content for all types of supporters. The team of authors work persistently to give readers meaningful content on a daily basis for one of the top clubs in England. As Wenger seems to approach the end of his tenure at Arsenal, it will be fascinating to see the material this blog provides as Arsenal begins to restructure itself.