Football Burp caught up with Rikki Waldron, keyboardist of delightfully psychotic London-based rockers Japanese Voyeurs, to discuss his beloved Arsenal ahead of what might be a make-or-break season for Arsène Wenger and his young Gunners side. Firstly, though, have a gander at the band in action – not only is it viscerally thrilling fare but singer Romily Alice is, in our considered opinion, a rock chick pin-up from the very top drawer…
What are your thoughts on Gaël Clichy joining Manchester City?
He’s done a good job for Arsenal but I think we can get a better left-back than him. It’s sad because he’s played for so long for us but he wasn’t very good last season and if we can get someone like Leighton Baines from Everton then that would be a better choice. Clichy leaving isn’t one of Arsenal’s main worries this summer – put it that way!
Do you still trust Wenger to get it right?
Yes, I do, but I understood a lot of Arsenal fans when they say they don’t. We’ve been in these sorts of positions before but he’s still a great manager and he can still find a player from out of nowhere. If he can get three or four players and hopefully hold on to Nasri then I think we’ll be back up there. It’s quite easy for Arsenal fans to be down at the moment when there’s all this talk about players leaving but if a few start coming in, like Gervinho and [Gary] Cahill, then they might start feeling a bit better. He hasn’t got long to try and get it right though.
Do you think the likes of Jack Wilshere and Aaron Ramsey are ready to step up and replace Samir Nasri and Cesc Fàbregas should they leave?
I think Wilshere and Ramsey will be Arsenal’s Xavi and Iniesta in the future but not at the moment. We’d need to buy someone because I think Ramsey needs more time to recover from his leg break. He’s not quite there yet but he will be. Someone like Mata from Valencia would be a great signing. We were linked with Benzema a while back – I think he’s staying at Real Madrid but someone like that would be good. We need to go out and spend money on a player to show the fans that we are serious about winning things.
Are you worried about Robin van Persie and Theo Walcott only having two years apiece left on their contracts?
It’s quite easy for the papers to say that all these players are going to leave because others [ie Fabregas and Nasri] might be leaving but van Persie was quoted not that long ago as saying how much he loves Arsenal and wants to win something here. And he’s a massive fan of Wenger so I don’t think he’ll leave. I don’t think Walcott will go either, just because I don’t think many teams would be interested in him! He’s only 22 so there’s no reason for him to leave, really. He’s got his whole career ahead of him.
Do you get to go to the game often?
Our singer Romily’s family share a couple of season tickets so whenever there’s one spare going I take that. Her brother usually takes them so I go a couple of times a season but my brother and I go to an Arsenal pub in Finsbury Park to watch games because there’s a great atmosphere there. It’s just too expensive to get a season ticket and the waiting list is ridiculously long.
What was the best match you’ve ever been to? And the worst?
The worst one was probably when we drew 4-4 with Spurs. The best one…I went to Everton away when we were 1-0 down at half-time and ended up winning 4-1. That was quite a good game.
Rikki, thank you.
Japanese Voyeurs’ debut album Yolk is out now on Fiction Records. For more information and a list of live dates, please visit www.japanesevoyeurs.com