Mamadou Sakho? Sounds Like Reverse Racism To Me

Posted: June 13, 2009 by cerbera in Uncategorized
Tags: , , , ,

by Rachid Parchment

According to Tim Hager, the agent of 19 year old Paris St. Germain defender Mamadou Sakho, Arsenal and Bayern Munich are hot on his trail.

Mamadou Sakho

“He will be moving clubs this summer. Arsenal are interested, but the club are too cheap at the moment,” said Hager .

“Yes, I think a transfer will happen soon. He wants to play football in England and Arsenal are a good club but Manchester United is a better club.

“But the most interested club is Arsenal, they want him the most. Bayern Munich is a top European club, so I think it will be Bayern or Arsenal.”

From what I’ve been reading around the internet it seems a lot of people want this guy to join Arsenal – the same people who are vehemently in opposition to us signing Thomas Vermaelen. Many claim we’ve been lacking experience (which is true) yet they want us to sign Sakho, who’s only 19 but not Thomas Vermaelen, who’s 23. Many also say Vermaelen is too short to play for Arsenal but they’re fine with us signing Sakho when Vermaelen is 6’1″ and Sakho is 6’1 1/2″.  How much of a difference is half an inch? Why is it that Vermaelen would be such a bad signing for us, according to many, while Sakho would be perfect? Is it the fact that he’s Black? I think that’s exactly it. The fact that he’s Black and African descent suggests to many that he just has to be a great defender, while Vermaelen, who’s White and European, just can’t be as good. Here’s a quote from the web blog “Oh To Be A Gooner” that sums up what I’m talking about:

“Now regardless of how much truth there is to those claims, Sakho is the type of player Arsene should buy. In fact, Sakho ticks all the boxes. He’s French, he’s athletic, he’s of African descent and he has an outlandish hairdo. Not to mention the fact that he’s still a teenager.”

The first fact pointed to there is that he’s French…well yeah, so’s Mikael Silvestre. What’s your point?

The fact that he’s still a teenager means he doesn’t have the experience we’re looking for. We need men in the team who have big game experience. Johan Djourou is 20 years old and has played important Champions League matches for us as well as World Cup matches. Sakho doesn’t have the same experience.

If Aidan (the writer of the article) is reading this then I’d like for him to give me an explanation of how him being an African makes him such a good candidate. Seems very racist to me.

Every thing positive mentioned about Mamadou Sakho can easily be attributed to Thomas Vermaelen. I’m not saying Aidan from Oh To Be A Gooner is discrediting Vermaelen but a lot of people are and are comparing him to Mamadou Sakho, saying Sakho is better for the reasons I mentioned above. If your belief is the same that we should sign Sakho but not Vermaelen, I’d love for you to leave a comment below explaining what makes Sakho so much better than Vermaelen.

You can also come by our forums and join the discussion about both players there at

Bye for now.

  1. twotouchmiracle says:

    the arsenal blogosphere is getting more and more ridiculous.

    way to manufacture controversy.

    who says we cant sign both?

  2. giant man says:

    personally i’d say sign both!! jobs a good en lol

  3. David says:

    Arsenal Action ey?

    Last time i click on this blog.

  4. S. Pooley says:

    you are a moron. more people are receptive to Sakho because the French league is easier to watch than the Dutch – so many have seen his quality whereas TV is being counted on unfortunate statistics, like Ajax’s appalling goals against record. Personally, I trust Wenger if he thinks the Belgium is good enough and I’ve seen Sakho – I know he is.

    Arsenal is the most cosmopolitan side in the country and has been for twenty years. Especially since Wenger has come in, no-one gives a shit about skin colour or nationality: only talent. Much like the scepticism aimed at kids we buy, Vermaelen’s hype suffers from the fact that Arsenal fans have rarely seen him play. That’s it. No more, no less.

    • cerbera says:

      Really Pooley? Apart from this season, when was the last a Lyon didn’t win the French league? You really believe the French Ligue 1 is more competitive than the Dutch Eredivisie? You need to adjust your tv set.

  5. S. Pooley says:

    this aidan guy also seems misguided.

  6. GunnerX says:

    We would definitely need both as Sakho will probably play in the ACON, hence if we only sign one of these guys it should be Vermaelen.

  7. phillip says:

    It seem like ur the racist mate!

  8. GoonerDave says:

    In fairness, the article you quote could be suggesting simply that AW is more likely to go for him rather than suggesting the black player is better.
    At least I hope so!
    I would imagine a player like Sakho would tick all Wengers boxes, but I doubt it has anything to do with his colour. More likely his age, his French connection, etc.

  9. Davo says:

    The Belgian is not 6′ 1″ – he is 5′ 11″. That is the perceived problem that some people have with the signing.

  10. Tom14 says:

    I think people thnk that Vermaelen is 5’10 not 6’1, therefore they question the height issue. If he is 6’1, nobody would complain.

    And those quoted comments are tongue in cheek, a bit of a joke. I am sure that he does not actually rate Sakho more because he is black.

  11. KJS says:

    sorry mate this seems like an odd aryicle – the other guys article just came across as tongue in cheek in that the stereotype he describes at face value seems to be a typical Wenger signing – but I think there was humour in at, as opposed to the racist angle that you appear to be looking to adopt.

  12. phillip says:

    u need to get ur facts right mate u chat utter crap with inappropriate comments!

  13. Nadji says:

    Vermalean is not 6’1 he’s 5’11 so there is a big difference between the two

  14. ldngooner says:

    what a useless fucking article just to get hits. Aidan is a good writer, don’t make him look a prick just to gain an article for urself.

  15. Mr B says:


    I don’t know what possesed you to write such doo doo.

    The fact is that Big Tony Adams said that he fought the fans would not fancy having Vermaelen because of his height.

    So I suppose that makes him racist too!

  16. David says:

    mate I’m sorry to say but that quote from “Oh To Be a Gooner” was obviously said ironically…he’s doesn’t state any actual positives…think about it

  17. gunners says:

    i thought that the other blog mentioned was a stereotyping joke, tongue in cheek type of comment.
    It’s not who arsenal need and shld buy, but who arsenal typically buy and he tick all the necessary boxes.
    for example, the player that arsene usually look for is french/african descent, young, not that well known and so on… see, all boxes tick.

    I thought at least all gooners shld get that comment the moment they read it straight away as our squad is filled with french speaking players. .

  18. The truth says:

    you say that people that want a black french player that is originally from africa is racist in some ways so basically your calling arsene wenger a racist because he gets african players

    • cerbera says:

      No one said that. The blog’s saying that people are saying Sakho’s good and Vermaelen isn’t and the reasons for saying Sakho is good apply to Vermaelen as well. So why hype a 19 year old with no experience over a guy who’s actually older and the same height as Sakho and is actually more proven than Sakho?

  19. Meh says:


  20. le prof says:

    wow that is a strange article mate-it was a tongue in cheek comment of course, the psg player is quick, strong technically sound and intelligent-a wenger player!!! the guy from belgium is a deboer kinda style but a bit more in ur face-he may be a tad short considering weve got gallas and toure who are 5″11ish, why you are bringing race into this i dont know-im proud 2 support a team who dont care what ur passport is!!! p.s sakho may play for france so wont be in ACON-think b4 u type please.

  21. eduardo says:

    sign both and all will be happy

    I’m sure if either or both are signed all fair minded Arsenal fans will get behind them and give them our full support

  22. Adom says:

    The race is never brought into question in Aiden’s article, only ethnicity. Samir Nasri is Frech/African (Algeria). It seems your perceiving what is quite obviously a sarcastic and ironic comment offensively in conflict with your own beliefs and feelings.

  23. bergkamp says:

    arsenal are very popular amongst young africans,being popular amongst people helps when you are tryin to make signings,its guys like you that dig for controversy, makin something up that isnt, if you wanna be overly politically correct then fuck off and be an mp,dont accuse a gooner of being racist just because he refered to a mans decent/nationality,when you sign players you have to be aware of how they may settle,this man is the perfect candidate to join our defensive unit

  24. Adom says:

    Also with regards to experience although Vermaelen is a fully capped member of the Belgian squad you have to remember that Alfonso Alves scored 7 goals in one game in the league which he is playing in. Sakho is the captain of one of France’s most successful club teams. Personally i feel that Senderos is a better player than Vermaelen aerially, which is what our defence is evidently lacking and Sahko is no better than Djourou and not necessarily what we need.

  25. smudger says:

    The reason why Sakho is preferred in most bloggers eyes is because he’s good on Football Manager.

    And everyone knows the two best scouting tools in world football are Football Manager, and Youtube compilations (rather than actually watching the players play full games)

  26. cerbera says:

    This article makes a comparison between Sakho and Vermaelen, actually showing that the only difference between both players is that Sakho is far less experienced yet far more lauded than Vermaelen. None of the comments so far have seemed to address that. Instead of all this flaming, why don’t you actually READ the article and think about what it’s saying?

  27. jack says:

    Lol @ GunnerX saying Sakho will go to the ACN. He’s french mate.

  28. Matt says:

    To be honest to say such a thing seems a tad out fo order. Race has never been mentioned and nor should it. Every Arsenal fan knows that race makes absolutely no differnce and I find it quite rediculous you would say such a thing. From all the reports I have read Vermaelen stands at 5 11″ where was sakho I think, like you said, is about 6 1 1/2″. I agree with comments sayinh we should sign both becuase we need both a physical presence and experience and from what I have read and heard about both players they bring bags full of strength and power and ariel ability. But for me neither of them really bring that much experience. I mean yes Vermaelen is 23 so has a few years on him, but he plays in Holland which you have to admit is not of the quality it used to be and Sakho being only 19 has not very much experience at all. I still think both would prove to be excellent signings but for Arsenals defence next season, I think it will be key to hold on to Gallas. As unlikely as I think that is he is the needed experience. Has is it in abundance. He has been there and done that. Yes he is a prat that opens his mouth too much but during that second half of the season he stepped up when no one else would. He was excellent and I am adament that had he not gotten injured we would have won a trophy this year. When he got injured the flood gates opened in our defence. He needs a big strong partner. Sign them both!

  29. James says:

    Just read that GunnerX comment as well. LOL!

    I heard Almunia is going as well.

  30. Jeffr says:

    I say sign them both. We get too many injuries each season. Our style of play requires athletic, adaptable and intelligent defending. We also need a world class goalkeeper. Almunia and Fabianski are not good enough. For those who love the club. Let’s get some change

  31. phillip says:

    blogger i hope u read these comments and see what u’ve caused. U should retire as a writer mate

  32. Gooner Jillu says:

    I see where you coming from but I think its more that Wenger does have a nack of buying good African French plyers and yes he does look the part. I dont think Gooners would have a problem if we signed Haangland and he is white. Hype surrounds this Sakho where the hype around the Belgium guy aint really there. So racism no, more to do with expectation. Will a`19 year old be my answer to our problems? no but if Gallas Toure stay and we sign Sakho with Varmalean and with Djouru, Silvestre and Song also available gives us considerable back up. Only Wenger knows if Gallas and Toure will be sold, if he is confident they will stay then by buying a 28 year old centre half will mean having to drop Toure or Gallas. You have to also take account that we are not yet Real, Barca, Milan or Man U. Experienced players that join theses clubs can put up with being back up there, if expereinced players join us they expect to be first team. Look at Diarra, only at Arsenal for a few months and he got fed up of being a sub. Look at Hleb, he been at Barca for a year and still wants to stay there even though he was a sub for the whole season. We have gone backwards in some aspects over the last few years in terms of pulling power for players. However, the future is bright for us especially with the wave of British players who should be in our starting line up in 2-3 years time

  33. BOY BETTER KNOW says:

    i don’t want either of the two in question to sign for us.Naldo and lescott for me are the ones we should be after.

  34. g0on3r says:

    just signed both of them. gallas won’t be here for much longer, if he stay, this is his last season at arsenal. by the time gallas gone, toure might not be as good as before, sakho vermaelen and djourou can take over center defend. solid enough for me, if someone in midfield can do flamini job.

  35. Karlito says:

    It’s not about colour, it’s about quality and to be fair the more strength and new players we get the better! i wouldn’t care if you signed an alien as long as he pitched in and did the job for the team! Stop trying to start bullshit hype!!! There’s enough racism in football as it is without you adding to it!

  36. Belgian Waffle says:

    Vermaelen is 5ft 10in OFFICIALLY!
    he is nowhere near 6ft tall and the sooner you guys believe that, the clearer everything will be.
    I am Belgian and have met Vermaelen a few times personally and I am 5ft 11in and he is shorter than I am.

  37. Matthew Wade says:

    Unfortunately you are clearly an idiot who couldn’t spot irony if it was stapled to your eyebrows!

    Sakho is one of the best young defenders in europe and is captain of psg at 19. Think Senderos with greater self confidence and recovery pace. No reason why we can’t get both, particularly as we may be losing 1 or 2 defenders. Although inexperienced, both potential signings have a decent amount of top level 1st team football behind them are versatile and have been unusually young captains…sounds promising to me…

  38. A says:

    I’ve not heard many people say they want us to sign Sakho over Vermaelen. That quote about Sakho being of African descent is obviously meant in jest, just as his having a silly haircut isn’t genuinly meant to show that he’s a better footballer, someone missed the point there I believe….!!

  39. Aidan says:

    Is this a wind-up, honestly?

  40. Kris says:

    Let’s be honest its not an issue of colour. If it was you could probably make the reverse point of what your making – if we could take any centre back in the world it would be Vidic, who’s about as white as they come. The clear issues we want to be thinking about other than simple defensive ability are height, build, experiance and leadership. We know until we see Vermaelen in person to prove us otherwise he is 5ft 11 ish. Just because some Arsenal fan decided to edit his wikipedia doesn’t make him suddenly grow a couple of inches. We also know that Sakho is built like an ox. In terms of experiance and leadership the two appear pretty similar, yes Vermaelen has played more games but not at a level anyone can truly rate, France is a far better league. Whilst both clearly possess leadership skills as they’ve captained their respective teams. Ultimately in an ideal world we’d sign them both but more importantly Wenger and Arsenal have one of the best scouting networks in the world. They know better than all of us put together which player is better now, which player can handle the premier league best, which player will fit into the squad bestand which player has the most potential. I also don’t doubt they know how tall Vermaelen is…

  41. Steve says:

    I’m pretty drunk and I can see pretty obviously that the article you quote is a joke that you have entirely missed. And also Vermaelen is not 6″ 1, he’s 5″ 10 or 11 (I forget exactly). Drunk bloke 2, blogger 0.

  42. PongoPower says:

    I don’t think Wenger gives a fuck about colour/class or creed….same as AIDAN….who ever the fuck he is.

    Wenger will buy the right ones for sure.

    We alo have players returning: SIMPSON/TRAORE/BARAZITE, potentially a couple of kids coming from the class of 2008:


    Dam I separated the english ones from the foreign ones does this make my comments racist ……errr


    P.S. Almost forgot about Kieron JIBBS

  43. Lomediatheque says:

    Ridiculous blog.
    Those were probably tongue-in-cheek comments; I think you’re jumping the gun a bit with those racism allegations.

  44. Lance says:

    Firstly no such thing as reversed racism it simply racism! Lets be real, the french league is a better league so we would by convention assume Sakho would have played in much more high quality games. Also wenger has been most successful with players from the french league than any other. The Age thing does make a huge difference, 19 Sakho is a prospect the unfinished article there is potentially much more room for growth at 23 going 24 Vermaelen is doesn’t have much more to and with money scarce arsenal 11 million is a lot for someone we are not sure how good he is and how far he has to go. My suggestion is sign Sakho and Haangeland. I think Haangeland would cost less than Vermaelen and he is a proven premiership performer sweeten the deal throwing Senderos their way. Sakho could possibly be had for silvetre plus cash .

  45. Rich says:

    The quote from ‘oh to be a gooner’ has clearly been taken totally the wrong way by you, the fool. Have you ever heard of sarcasm? Irony? Humour?
    stupid, badly thought out and poorly written article.

  46. Stuart says:

    The quality of debate on this article is roughly equal to the quality of the article itself — utter shite. How is everyone suddenly an expert on two players — one of whom plays in Holland and the other in France? The person who nominated Championship Manager and YouTube has it right, unfortunately. Meanwhile, we’re reduced to arguing over a couple of inches, as if that’s the most crucial factor.

    And what makes anyone think that race is an issue for Wenger, when one look at the players signed over the last 13 years makes it quite clear that it’s not? Interesting too, the number of fans who scream for “experience” then seem happy for us to dump Gallas (clearly our best defender) for a 19-year-old. Make up your minds.

    Last, and quite possibly least, anyone who believes that the Dutch league is of higher quality than the French league doesn’t deserve to have their opinion taken seriously.

  47. Michael says:

    Lost alot of respect with this post. You can think what you like but was it really necessary to post this? People want to read your opinions on Arsenal, not your racist rants. I understand that passion can get the better of us sometimes but I think you made a mistake on this one and should apologize.

  48. anon says:

    Vermaelen is 6″1! you morons. check out the pic with van persie! i dont suppose he was standing on the box in that pic.

    just because someone at wiki had him at 5″11 doesnt mean he is. he probably did grown a few inches in the past few years considering that he is only 23!

  49. OGC says:

    Too many blogs. Very little to write about without everyone saying the same thing so I guess more bullshit is what’s likely to come out from a lot of these blogs. No surprises there

  50. craszygunner says:

    the truth is most people want us to sign sakho becos he exudes a certain strength that appears to be missing in the team….we are seen as a soft touch …and the team is crying for a no nonsense vidic type defender…

    The problem with vermalaen is that even the Ajax supporters are wondering why we are going for him they think he is clearly not good enough for arsenal…

    Verm is not an unknown quantity …he is not amongst the best 4 defenders in the dutch league …so why the fcuk do we want to sign him?..we need someone who is either clearly better than Toure or Gallas…and no one has convinced me yet that he is…

    I would rather go for Hangeland and Sakho …experience and potential….I will keep Gallas and sell Toure with Djorou and Song as back up….

  51. Joe says:

    Summer boredom?

  52. Lettraggad says:

    Totally ridicilous headline.
    We are Arsenal race is not an issue. Who said we arent signing both. I know nothing about Vermeelen but was happy to hear the news mainly beacause he is a captain. Thats one important box ticked for me .. we need warriors and leaders .. we have talent we have class. If Sakho comes as well we have another fighter and a very skillfull defender. For many years weve hade more classplayers than the likes of United but they packed their side with greasy fighters. so they still competed.. we need to rstore balance and add that. That was Flaminis finest qulity he was a warrior and transferred that to others in the squad.

  53. j says:

    I am dutch and vermalean used to cut my grass last year to get himself some extra pocket money. I am 6ft2 and he is clearly taller than me by a clear foot.

    p.s. i like corn.

  54. Simon says:

    what a load of Shit! idiots like you who call people racist when they quite clearly arn’t (he was talking, judging on Wengers previous buys)cause shit for the sake of it!


  55. Gooner says:

    im pretty sure all black players are better than white players.

  56. bc says:

    I think youae all missing what is happening here anyway. This fella has been signed to be our new petit because we simply canot afford proven defensive mids. He will also provide cover for Silvestre/Gibbs cos Clichy will be going to Madrid. He can also play centre half. Can Sakho play 3 positions? not yet anyway but Wenger will soon turn him into an above average all rounder. Also there are few players Wenger has signed that become 1st choice X1 on day one so do not expect this fella or any other new signing to be starting the season. My starting x1 for the opening match whether we sign someone or not will be
    Sagna Toure Djourou Silvestre
    Nasri Fabregas Denilson Rosicky
    RVP Arshavin

    (Gallas/Adebayor and Clichy Sold with more lesser known players brought in) We all mneed to take a reality check Madrid are spending cos they are re-financing their current debt. We have recently done the same thing to pay for the stadium and 3 training centres.

  57. Anusol says:


    Reverse racism?

    Don’t you mean just ‘racism’?

    Just because the player who is being prejudiced against is white, that doesn’t make the racism ‘reverse’…

    Racism is racism, regardless which direction!

    • cerbera says:

      It’s “reverse” because there’s a stereotype on the Black player that’s to suggest that he’s better simply because he’s Black.

  58. SonofaGun says:

    I love some a bit of summer controversy.
    One thing that occurs to me about Vermaelen and Sakho is that they are both captains. Regardless of playing strengths we need leaders and winners. These guys have that.
    I think Wenger has finally got it. I’m optimistic for next season.

  59. simba says:

    this is very sad to listen to. firstly if wenger wnted sahko that badly he would have already made an offer and secondly colour of skin doesn t make wenger sign a player but tallent does . varmalen is better i think and im black .

  60. CMac says:

    Good point Smudger. I’ve turned Arsenal into the best team in Europe with Sakho, Aguero and Veloso (on Football Manager). So he must be a good signing. Now he should look to Sporting CP and buy either Veloso or Moutinho. For those who can’t tell, this is tongue in cheek. I’ve seen neither play.

  61. monkeycricketgunner says:

    fuck me there is too many managers on here, let wenger get on with it he has a tough enough job on his hands already without ‘fans’ getting on his back before he even signs anybody, and there is nothing racist about stats or comparisons to other players. leave the squad as it is,i think all the current squad want to play for the club but motivatation may be the problem, all it needs is a signing here and a goal there and players confidence rockets,id get one maybe two players in, i like the look of eden hazard although not the finished article, and vermaelen has the quality we need i think, we are in desperate need of a michael essien type player in our engine room,maybe have a little look back at vieira??

  62. goonderber says:

    This is a moronic article. For one, the ‘Oh to be a gooner’ comments were sarcastic more than anything else.

    Also, no one seems to be sure how tall vermeelen (hope spelling is OK) but the general consensus is that he is like 5’11”.

    Its true some fans/bloggers are short-sighted and il-informed when commenting on all these transfer rumours and talk, but I fail to see why you should link in racism into it. Perhaps you are the one that has issues with the race of players.

    Colour has nothing to do with it .. quit writing tripe like this.

  63. Jeanius says:

    What on earth is Reverse Racism? Would some one please define it for me? Racism, beyound personal likes, dislikes and preferences- bias if you like, is very different from social constructs that advantage certain sectors of society as a group whether they choose this advantage or not: they are simply advantaged for having certain physical attributes. This is racism and goes hand in hand with the historic control of the natural assets of the country and the economy. It does not relate to the exceptions to the rule. Somehow black people that gain fortune in one way or another and arrive at a point of being able to excercise choice are reversed racist or benefit from reversed racism… Strange.

  64. Amanda says:

    Hey just wanted to say i read the article and the comments and i can honestly say i see both sides of the arguement. If those leaving these comments cant open their eyes to see both pts of view they obviously need to readjust their prespectives. I thought it was well worded to get the pt across u were hoping to portray. As for the racist remarks from the comments left, people he has a right to his opionion if u dont like it for your own closed minded reasons then mabye u should b the one to reconcider what ur reading

  65. […] Mamadou Sakho? Sounds Like Reverse Racism To Me by Rachid Parchment According to Tim Hager, the agent of 19 year old Paris St. Germain defender Mamadou Sakho, Arsenal […] […]

  66. toure all day says:

    I would just like to point out that Vermaelen is actually only 5’9 so that is a big mistake you made. I’m sorry if this has already been pointed out but I feel that even if it has it is needed to be said again because insulting wenger like that is just stupid.

  67. clive says:

    Sakho is the youngest captain ever in French football history. The guy has a future, but may be too expensive..? If he could join Arsenal and be nurtured at the top level at a top club, he can be a massive player in the next 15 years for Arsenal in the premier league. He has a lot of potential

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