Thursday, March 18, 2010

Thoughts about Chamakh's mullet

I just finished watching Bordeaux vs Olympiakos. Rumour has it that Marouane Chamakh is coming to Arsenal next season, and after this morning's performance, I wouldn't be displeased if it happened. There's a lot to like about Chamkah's game. He's fast, strong, got a good leap, and would fit in well at the top of our 4-3-3.

Of course, Chamakh isn't the finished article. He doesn't score a lot of goals (but then which Arsenal striker does?). He doesn't have a good first touch (then again, neither does Bendtner). There's still the nagging suspicion that we're targeting him because he's cheaper than say, Karim Benzema. But still, I'd be happy to see him in a red shirt with white sleeves next season.

The other thing I like about Chamakh is that he's got an amazing mullet. In a world of short-back-and-sides, Chamakh stand out like a denim-clad bogan at a society ball. I like it because it's a classic mullet - very short at the top and the sides, and a long tail at the back. A lot of Latin players have long hair that's held back with an alice band, but it's not the same as a genuine mullet.

The mullet had its hey-day in the 70s and 80s, when just about every major sportsman sported a mullet and a 'mo. Since then, its popularity has declined. There are still a few mullets floating around in sport, but it's increasingly rare in the English-speaking world. A good omen is that those few footballers who DO sport mullets seem to be quite good players.

Eduardo da Silva had one when he first signed with us, but has since succumbed to peer pressure and gone for a short-back-and-sides. Is it any wonder that his drop in form coincided with his change in haircut (as well as the horrific, near injury-ending tackle)? Grow the mullet, Eduardo, and the goals will flow like your lanky neck hair!

Sergio Aguero is famous for being Maradona's successor and Maradona's son-in-law, but he should probably also be known as heir to Maradona's mullet. I think he's gone for the long hair with Alice-band combo now, but this picture of him with the Argentina side shows how much post-Maradona Argentina has missed a fast impish player with a bogan haircut.

And then, of course, there's the best player in the world. Lionel Messi has been in a mullet for as long as I can remember, and I dare say it's helped him in his development. Maybe it helps his balance. Maybe because his neck is obscured, the opposition can't tell which way he's going to turn. Who knows, but there's got to be a reason he's kept it all these years.

Now, I'm not saying Chamakh's going to be as good as Aguero or Messi (or as good as Eduardo was before he changed his hairstyle), but you can't deny the pattern. A striker with a mullet is a good prospect. I know it. You know it. And most importantly, Arsene Wenger knows it.

Arsene Knows.

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