“Unless you suffer from a selective deafness that could rival the selective myopia that Arsene Wenger (above) himself has long conquered,” writes the Guardian’s Martina Hyde, ” you will be aware that the chant reared its hideous head last Saturday at Old Trafford, during Arsenal’s loss to Manchester United.” Hyde doesn’t specify if the chant in question was “with a packet of sweets and a cheeky smile / Wenger is a fucking paedophile” (I’d heard that one aimed at Graham Rix several years ago) or “the Wenger bus is comin’ / and all the kids are runnin’ / from Arsenal to Manchester / he is a child molester”, but she’s understandably frustrated the Arsenal manager has tolerated such abuse for over a decade.
Needless to say, the FA declined to return repeated calls on the matter, presumably having far more important things to do than discuss the vile abuse of a manager over more than a decade. What were those urgent things? Well, I note they squeezed out a press release announcing Rafa BenÃtez had been charged with improper conduct for comments made after the Spurs game a couple of weeks ago. So we can only guess at the sabre-toothed nature of plans to combat this blight, that they are even now not really being arsed to come up with.
What then of the police, who have power vested in them by the 1991 Football Offences Act? Several Spurs fans who abused Sol Campbell at Portsmouth last September have been convicted this year, but Greater Manchester police have no record of any complaint being made by a member of the public on Saturday. Should they wish to act on their own initiative, they may care to start with the online vendors selling a downloadable version of the chant, presumably for people who don’t have enough scumbag friends to sing along with them.