Which Arsenal Legends Are the Arsenal Fan TV Characters Most Like?
The rise of supporter-owned media is changing the face of football coverage, and Arsenal Fan TV is right at the forefront of that evolutionary wave.
They have gained a reputation for highly entertaining videos, which showcase the views of an increasingly frustrated fanbase. Inevitably, the personalities who populate Arsenal Fan TV have become stars in their own right.
In this piece, we compare some of the key figures from the channel with Arsenal favourites past and present.
Who is host Robbie most like, and who from the current side can match the fire and passion of Troopz? Read on to find out.
(Videos contain language NSFW)
Robbie: Laurent Koscielny
Robbie is like Arsenal centre-half Laurent Koscielny—without him, the whole thing falls apart.
Robbie is the leader of the Arsenal Fan TV posse, just as Koscielny has worn the armband for Arsenal for most of this season. There's a natural authority to both men—although the France international isn't as vocal as Robbie, he exudes a similar sense of calm.
It's remarkable how Robbie manages to keep his cool with all the controversy and anger that sometimes comes across on his channel. It's similar to how Koscielny remains composed at the heart of a chaotic Arsenal defence.
Claude: Alexis Sanchez
Claude is probably Arsenal Fan TV's star man, with his extraordinary rants garnering him the biggest profile of all their contributors. His capacity to lose his rag is a little like that of Arsenal's own star: Alexis Sanchez.
Neither can contain their passion. When Claude is asked about Arsenal, his energy and irritation often seem boundless. Alexis can be the same, chiding his team-mates for even the smallest of errors.
Allow Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain to explain. The midfielder missed a chance against Crystal Palace having been set up by Alexis, and later told the club's official membership newsletter (h/t the Mirror):
He's (Sanchez) definitely one of those players who will tend to bring out the best in you because he's very demanding of himself and everyone else.
The number of times we've come off the pitch and we've won, but he's still not happy with something. The Crystal Palace game for example, we won 2-0 and right at the end of the game he's cut in and he passed it to me. I shot and Wayne Hennessey saved it in the last minute of the game.
The boys were all happy in the dressing room but Alexis came to me in the shower and said 'My friend are you going to score? Oh no my friend, I passed you the ball, you have a cup of tea, you wait... and then you shoot.'
Similarly, Claude has no problem letting cameras and fellow fans know what he thinks about Arsenal's performances. He and Alexis are both particularly demanding of those around them.
Kalechi: Emmanuel Eboue
Kalechi's Arsenal Fan TV appearances provide some light relief on the channel. He is famous for his singing and dancing, and as a consequence it is inevitable that he will be compared to full-back Emmanuel Eboue.
The former Ivory Coast international was not always the most popular man at Arsenal. On one infamous occasion against Wigan Athletic in 2008, he came on as a substitute only to play so poorly that he was quickly withdrawn to a chorus of boos.
However, he went on to redeem himself and was consistently cited as one of the most beloved members of the dressing room. In June 2007, Emmanuel Adebayor told FourFourTwo (h/t Daily Mail):
People who know me would say I’m a cool guy, always laughing and joking. But Emmanuel Eboue – he’s funnier than the funniest comedians on TV.
Sometimes when he eats he puts food up his nose and when he met the Queen at Buckingham Palace he was on the floor playing with her corgis.
We wouldn't accuse Kalechi of anything that bizarre, but it's true that Eboue's personality and dance moves are reminiscent of the Arsenal Fan TV man.
Ty: Arsene Wenger
Ty is known as the relentlessly positive member of the Arsenal Fan TV crew. Even when the team is in dire straights, he finds a way to be optimistic.
In that respect, he is similar to current boss Arsene Wenger. The Frenchman's myopia knows few bounds—sometimes it seems like whatever the result might be, the Gunners manager trots out the same quotes about mental strength.
Their attitude is understandable. For Wenger, it's a way or remaining upbeat and focusing on challenges to come. For Ty, it enables him to make peace with spending thousands of pounds following his beloved Arsenal.
They're also both famous for their interactions with Arsenal-themed sportswear. Ty is always decked out head-to-toe in Gunners gear, while Wenger's customary coat (replete with zip-related problems) has become iconic.
Both men dearly love Arsenal Football Club—they just struggle to see some of the problems with it.
Moh: Ivan Gazidis
It was Moh who coined the infamous line "Don't talk about spend, talk about net spend." It sounded almost exactly like something that would come out of the mouth of Arsenal chief executive Ivan Gazidis.
Moh is clearly an informed fan who has taken a careful look at the club's spending patterns. He views football in the modern way, as a business where success is balanced against expenditure.
While such objective analysis of the club of your heart is admirable, it's also a little dispiriting to see the way in which business-speak infiltrates the fan experience.
With such a plethora of information available, it's inevitable that some supporters are now as interested in balance sheets as results. Nevertheless, it's difficult to escape the fact that there's little romance to that.
Gazidis also takes pride in the club's financial performance, but perhaps if he was a little more focused on on-field success the Arsenal fans would be more content right now.
Troopz: Paul Merson
Troopz seems so unhappy with the current state of affairs at Arsenal that he'd probably feel affronted to be compared with any contemporary player.
With that in mind, it's probably a good thing that we've chosen to compare him to former Gunner Paul Merson. After all, they both speak in a language that not everyone understands.
In seriousness, they are both engaging commentators on all things Arsenal. Merson didn't make the grade as a manager, but he has found a home as a pundit for Sky Sports. Like Troopz, he can be prone to hyperbole, and it doesn't take too much for him to lash out at Arsene Wenger's decisions.
However, just as when he was a player, there is a flair and creativity to the way he does things. Troopz has that, too—he talks straight and in an entertaining fashion.
DT: Jack Wilshere
DT's Arsenal counterpart has to be another man covered in tattoos: Jack Wilshere.
Both men are Arsenal through and through, but they have had their problems with the club of late.
While DT has grown frustrated at Arsene Wenger's management of the club, Wilshere has sought to find first-team football elsewhere. That has led to both men watching Arsenal from a slight distance in 2016/17.
However, while Wilshere may be approaching the end of his Arsenal career, DT will still be attached to the Gunners next season and beyond.