A Striking Viking to Nik it.

Mr Wenger faces a dilemna tonight; does he keep his promise and target all 4 trophies or does he play the kids knowing there are more important games to come?

I believe the CC is a waste of time for the top teams, a number of games with the potential for injuries and a meaningless trophy at the end of it. I acknowledge  the need for silverware as does Mr. Wenger but the Carling Cup ranks lower than the Youth Cups in my opinion and we shouldn’t be bothering. Does anyone mention the winner’s after the day? No, only the fans of that particular club and they are embarrassed – without checking do you know who played in the Final last season?  The Final isn’t even shown on European TV.

But …… it does allow the fans to sing “We are on our way to Wembley” etc and Silverware is needed at the Emirates as proof that this team is maturing and capable of winning a trophy. We are on a roll (if 3 games can be considered a roll) and would like it to continue.

Newcastle away was as poor a draw as we could have got. A long trip up to the Frozen North, a rabid crowd expecting their team to knock over the fancy-dans from Down South, and a team who are in good form at present with some big units throughout the side (though the brutal Barton is diminuitive). If we play the kids (knowing that the best of them are out on loan) we could get hammered, but do we want to see Fabregas get a kicking from Barton ahead of WHU and Shaktar next week? Be honest  –  if we win both of those games who cares about tonight?  WHU is  a vital 3 points with our rivals having tough fixtures, and 3 points in Donetsk guarantees our place in the Final 16 allowing AW to play a reserve team for the remaining CL games.

We must play Chesney, he needs to feel part of the future. Should he not play AW can hardly expect anything else than a rejected contract offer at the end of the season.

My team:

The Vikings attacked and settled in Newcastle (Monkchester at the time) for a few hundred years. As a student of Danish I can tell you that many Geordie words derive from Danish. Mr Bendtner will feel completely at home; expect him and Arsenal to conquer the Geordie’s once more.

COYRRG

p.s. Sorry about the dreadful title ….

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213 Responses to A Striking Viking to Nik it.

  1. SharkeySure says:

    Striking Viking !!!!

  2. SharkeySure says:

    Wooo hoooooo 1st !!!

    I’m going to run around the room really really fast now in celebration !!

    I am first, I am SharkeySure, I am 9, I’m on half term !!!!

  3. Red Arse says:

    Nicely written and an interesting point of view and a brave title. :-)

    On this occasion, I could not disagree more about the importance of this cup to Arsenal.

    You are right, in that it is a Micky Mouse competition, but boy oh boy, do we need to kick start the future at Arsenal. A trophy, yes, but crowing rights too, and a little swagger for us fans, that’s what we need, rather than being scruffy wannabees, with our noses pressed up against the shop window, watching Manure getting all the goodies.

    Sorry to be a dissenter, in this instance, but I really want us to win this please! :-)

  4. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    You are a sarcastic bastard, thats for sure sharkey

  5. SharkeySure says:

    Thats a compliment right GG9..??

    Seriously though, how can anyone over the age of 8 or 9 make such an effort to be 1st poster, and then get some sort of satisfaction from it.

    Refreshing for 30-40mins or resorting to cheating (SIG?). Nope, I’ll never get that one !!

  6. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    BR

    The final is shown live here.

    I really want to win against the Geordies. If The Arsenal can get over them then the only real danger left will be man utd. No, beggers can’t be choosers here, I really want to win the Carling Cup.

  7. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    Its a sign of intelligence sharkey to have the quick wit, so yes i spose it must be a compliment :)

  8. SharkeySure says:

    Anyway, in other news…..

    No Vela in your team Mr Radders ?? He really deserves his chance, even if part of me suspects that this might be exactly the sort of game that tells us that his future lies elsewhere.

    Others have stated that he needs a PL loan so that he goes ‘up North’ more reguilarly and he can show us that he’s tough enough, both physically and mentally.

    I do believe that he’s a definite starter tonight.

  9. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    This is for Le Gaffer in the Carling Cup, please baby go all the way

  10. SharkeySure says:

    I’m on the fence a bit today. Whilst I don;t rate the CC too highly, it is atrophy to be won.

    Even more important now is that we have so many talented players that by default we can rotate out 10 from Sunday and still put out a very recognisable eleven tonight.

    We couldl just add 2-3 kid sto Sun;s bench and thats a very strong team.

    That Arsene has assembled such an array of talent on such a small budget, almost makes a mockery of the spending of many other clubs (not just the Sheikhs !)

  11. kelsey says:

    BR,

    I disagree with you with regarding competing in all 4 trophies.One could argue that we now have a bigger and more experienced first team squad and fewer reserves competing in the CC.The CC is over before the nitty gritty of the CL begins(if we get that far.)The FA Cup is a lottery and dependence on the draw becomes a major factor,and that is over 2 months away.I don’t think we will win the PL but a top4 place should be within our grasp.Rotation has to an extent been forced upon us through injuries yet again,and how often have we played our best back 4 together,but there again what combination is the best in that department.Vermaelen is a big loss, and the signs are ominous as to when he will return .We now have enough exceptional players to turn a game,mainly Cesc,Nasri,Wilshere,Arshavin(on his day) RVP when fit and Chamakh provides a new dimension in attack.Theo has improved beyond belief and Song and what I saw of Denilson last Sunday,tighten up the midfield Add to that Gibbs who will overtake Clichy and the return of Ramsey.

    Clichy,Diaby Djorou,Eboue and Kos are below par,but all in all I would argue that we have a better squad than for many a year.Confidence and fewer injuries is the key to success.

  12. Big Raddy says:

    I respect those who disagree and accept I am in the minority, but stand by my opinion.

    However, should we actually get to Wembley, I will be flying back for the occasion and desperate for us to win :-)

    Kelsey. You make a good point about timelines. (CC/CL)

  13. Big Raddy says:

    SS. NO Vela – only because Nik and Theo need game time.

    In 7 months of predicting I have only got one team correct!

  14. RedandDread says:

    Although the team put out tonight will be a ‘B’ team, it will be enthused with enough 1st team and big game experience to hopefully overcome the barcodes at St. James Pk.!

    Your back 5 looks probable, however, I feel a midfield of Lansbury, Denilson & Rosicky plus a front three of Theo, Vela/JET & Nik wll be our best line-up. There is no need to throw too many new faces into the mix. Rosicky, Vela, Waloctt, Denilson, Bendter, Koscielny and Gibbs all need good game time and all have featured in big games this season. Is Diaby fit? If so, then he could do with a game also. JET, Eastmond and one or two of the main stars on the bench.

    So although we have an understrehgth side out, it still represents a squad that has matured and strengthened over last year and a squad that should have enough talent and know how to win this game.

    I think our squad is big enough and good enough to win this competition this year and whilst I have been in agreement with Wenger’s approach to the Carling Cup in previous years, we need some silverware this season, any silverware! With this up for grabs in February then that would be a nice pot of gold and confidence boost to have stuffed away come the business end of the season!

  15. 26may1989 says:

    It’s always hit and miss whether the graphics from this site will appear when I log in, meaning I can’t see the predicted team sheet for tonight’s game: could someone jot down the names for me? Muchos gracias!

  16. charybdis1966 says:

    Morning all, normally I try and stick up for the minority Radders being the contrary sort of old git that I am, but on this occasion I’m with the school of thought that any old trophy wil do.
    In any other season I would agree that the Carling Cup is pretty irrelevant but Gooners have to suffer the “Not won anything in 5 years” crapola day in day out that we need something to shuit these guys up.
    Of course the assertion of “Not won anything in 5 years” is a lazy comment regurgitated by even lazier hacks and the arsenal hating media in general but a trip to Wembley and a trophy will work wonders on the morale of the Gooner community.

  17. Big Raddy says:

    Chary. It will just become ” You only won the CC”, but I see your point

    26May

    It was;
    CHesney
    Eboue Squill Kos Gibbs
    Denilson Song Lansbury TR
    Theo Nik

  18. 26may1989 says:

    Thanks Radders.

  19. Morning all

    Interesting choice of music gnarley ;)

    26may – sorry the graphics aren’t working for you, have you tried a different search engine?

    Heres Raddys team

    Chesney

    Eboue Squidgy Kozzer Gibbs

    Song

    Theo Denilson Lansbury Rosicky

    Nikki B

  20. I too am feeling that we need to win something – a bit of an about turn when I’ve told scummers, manks and bindippers for years that its a rubbish trophy and not worth winning.

    However I would love to see Cesc surrounded by our team lift a trophy at Wembley so lets go for it. A trip to Wembley in February could be on the cards :D

  21. charybdis1966 says:

    Yeah Peachy, followed by another trip to Wembley in May.
    True Radders, I know they’ll only say “It’s just the Pisspot Trophy” but I’d rather that than “You don’t win anything.”

  22. Neamman says:

    I dont think that kis and adults are relevant any moe. We have such a big squad and most of our so called kids have lots of experience.
    I hope/expect to see

    Skosky
    Eboue Kozz Djourou Gibbs
    Rosicky Lansbury Denilson Theo
    Nic B Vela

    Of that team arguably only Lansbury and Skosny are a “kid” in the meaning of reserve. But in truth only Denilson, Rosicky and Theo could realistically be part of our starting eleven when we are at full strength. AW is true to his word, he is playing his second team but my God.. what a “second” team we have now!!!

  23. Carlito11 says:

    I would rest Song and I think Neamman might have predicted correctly but Nik/Theo/Carlitos as a front 3 in attack and Theo/ Nik dropping back to form a 5 in midfield in defense.
    Fully up for winning this one in terms of laying down a marker for the future. Anyone seen how strong Mourinho’s team in the King’s Cup against Murcia was last night? And that is a “worthless competition” too… Winners want to win everything! (although even with Ronaldo, Murcia held them 0-0 :-)

  24. 26may1989 says:

    I agree with Red Arse and Kelsey, we should go for the League Cup in a way we haven’t in years gone past: we all believe this squad is capable of woing something special and the League Cup would be a great staging post towards that. It’s a cliché but the players need to get into the habit of winning and this trophy is a good chance of doing that.

    Also, there is less need for us to use the League Cup to blood youngsters than there was in the past simply because our kids are already very experienced.

    I’d go for the following tonight:

    Szczesny
    Eboué, Squillaci, Koscielny, Gibbs
    Song, Denilson
    Emmanuel-Thomas, Fabregas, Walcott
    Bendtner

    Some might question Fabregas being included but my thinking is he needs to continue his come-back. If he is rested, then Rosicky would be the obvious alternative.

    Am feeling good about tonight – Newcastle play a decent style of football but have poor home form. Plus we’re better than them…..

    Who is this Jex Poxy idiot? Another reason to wish the worst for Wolves. Though they did give a very poor second string United side a run for their money last night.

  25. SharkeySure says:

    JET has to play tonight I would have thought, but where..?? I’m at a loss on that one.

    I’d also be very surprised to see Song tonight, other than on the bench.

  26. SharkeySure says:

    Five years no trophy..??

    Complete bollox perpetrated by the lazy media and picked up by the doziest and most short sighted of Arsenal fans. How does any Arsenal fan completely dismiss some of our successes and achievements in that period.

    I’ve said many times that our 2006 CL loss is a better achievement and memory for me than our 2005 FAC win. How some people laugh when I say that.

    Best of all is how some of the Anti Arsenal brigade now dismiss 2005 and talk about “7 years without a title”, even though we are only at the start of the 7th year. Odd

  27. SharkeySure says:

    Kelsey: “I don’t think we will win the PL but a top4 place should be within our grasp”

    You then went on to list a group players who really should have you convinced that we should not be finishing out of the top two – imho!!

    Off for a bit now….

  28. charybdis1966 says:

    Yeah S Sure(re. your 11.10am), I do have astigmatism. :)

  29. SharkeySure says:

    Chary – you’re not alone !!

  30. charybdis1966 says:

    LOL, just call me Mr Magoo…(if it wasn’t for contact lenses I’d be stuffed.)

  31. Steve Palmer says:

    I must admit i allso was saying that the Carling Cup was a joke, but i beleive i was going along with Arsene’s thinking, but now with a bigger squad am now thinking we can now afford to go all out to win it,when all the other teams are playing weakened teams and resting main players it takes away from the victory, after all said and done we started that trend off so we are the guilty team, i have been amazed to see the other teams doing the same, but then again Wengers a genius and he has sucked in managers like Feruson to do the same, win it this year and it will be the last time this cup will be called The Micky Mouse Cup

  32. Rasp says:

    Morning,

    Great build-up to the game Raddy.

    I’d like to win the CC – you could see that SAF (=ol bacon face chary) wanted it last night.

    I’m a great believer in momentum and a ‘winning mentality’ so I’ll be quite happy to win the CC and the CL in the same year :P

  33. charybdis1966 says:

    Or “65% proof nose/whiskey breath”, Raspers.

  34. Rasp says:

    He’s really looking old in his movement and mannerisms now don’t you think chary. He struggles to get up out of his seat to celebrate a goal these days. The manic gum chewing doesn’t look right in a man of his age.

  35. Red Arse says:

    Poxy Moxy, Tub of Lard, and CEO of Wolves said AW should keep his mouth shut. So who is he?

    He was a basketball player in his youth, ran a sports marketing business, a basketball franchise, spent five years as general manager of Partick Thistle F.C., and worked with Rangers F.C., before his appointment as Chief Executive of Stoke City F.C. in 1995

    Well qualified you might think, to break wind, but sadly not qualified to advise our genius manager Arsene.

  36. Mayank says:

    I actually don’t think we’ll win the CC, cause I’m sure there be some team more desperate to win it on the way to the final. Neither do I think it’s a trophy worth mentioning (will it even go up on the timeline thing at the Emirates?). However I do think lifting a cup midseason can do the team a world of good.

    Hopefully we get and beat Chelsea in the Final.

  37. Mayank says:

    I was wondering about the gum chewing age relation myself. I think it’s just too much of a habit to give up for him, also you can imagine that he’ll be perceived as an old man if he stops chewing. Nevermind the media who’ll say he’s lost his fire.

  38. 26may1989 says:

    Chief Exec of both Stoke and Wolves on his CV, pretty much confirms what to think of him.

    I wonder if he would dare talk up aggressive football in front of Ramsey, Eduardo, Jeffers, Cech, Diaby and Ben Arfa. What a twat.

  39. 26may1989 says:

    Mayank, Chelsea got knocked out by Newcastle in the last round. The best teams left in are United, Villa and us.

  40. charybdis1966 says:

    Mayank – it will as the 1993 League Cup win is up there already,together with the FA Cup win, a first double of the domestic cup competitions.

    Raspers – he should retire to an old peoples home I think, it’s cruelty to the aged making him work past retirement age.

  41. Carlito11 says:

    Interesting blog on Barcelona’s tactics echoing our own great Herbert Chapman’s team formation… http://www.guardian.co.uk/sport/blog/2010/oct/26/the-question-barcelona-reinventing-w-w
    My question is whether Wenger is also following the W-W formation (especially in attack)… lovely bit of tradition being followed I think :-)

  42. Carlito11 says:

    Sorry to go off topic but thought you lot would have some interesting takes on it!

  43. 26may1989 says:

    Thanks Carlitto, a very interesting blog that one. I think we all identify with the particular reference to the quality and energy of Barcelona’s pressing tactics when out of possession, which did indeed overwhelm us last season. I think our players are heading in that direction but are some distance from being able to achieve the same level.

  44. Mayank says:

    Oh ok then 26may. I guess I’ll have to be Utd then.

    Chary, then I guess we’ll have to win something else as well, wouldn’t want the only thing after a gap to be the CC.

  45. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    COYRRR

    Night all

  46. RockyLives says:

    Nice provocative post BR – I suspect you knew that most people would disagree with you (including me).
    In principle I don’t like the fact that the idiots from down the road have won silverware more recently than us.
    I also wrote a post some time ago about how important the League Cup win of 1987 was for the group of players who went on to nick the championship in ’89. For all it’s uselessness as a competition (I can’t even remember who won it last year) I would still take the CC just to shut up the ‘no silverware’ critics and to give the team a taste of what it’s like to actually win a trophy.

  47. tommystout says:

    26m, screw villa as one of top sides left in, they messed up my premiership accumulater last week!!!one goal between me and 17K downer.
    anyways good preview BR, i think we’re gonna win this comp and it will be welcome to me.
    JET is knocking at the door anyone see his hatrick last week?

  48. charybdis1966 says:

    Wenger says he will “play an 80% first team” – so that calculates out to 2.2 non-first team players to play.
    As he’s already said Chesney is in goal that leaves 1.2 spaces free, so maybe Lansbury and an under 8 player ?

  49. dandan says:

    Hi AA bloggers,am back in the UK in one piece after 6 weeks in the sun and looking forward to tonight’s game, but first some serious blog reading to do, catching up with all those posts I missed.

    Kelsey my landline is down if you have tried to catch me, Super Sky say 72 hrs before its up and running. Hi hum good old English efficiency scores again

  50. Red Arse says:

    Welcome back Dandan. :-)

    Hope you enjoyed your hols, and we missed your posts/comments! :-)

  51. Red Arse says:

    CharyB,

    Perhaps we could play one overweight player instead! :-)

  52. charybdis1966 says:

    RedA – Nasri has been on a diet though ,so slim pickings there !

  53. Red Arse says:

    CharyB :-)

    Although, if JET plays he could be the perfect “makeweight”.

  54. 26may1989 says:

    Welcome home DD, I won’t ask where you’ve been, it’ll just annoy me. And if you’ve been away for six weeks, that means you missed the WBA and Chelsea games – sounds, in a Mystic Meg sort of way, like you’re to blame.

  55. charybdis1966 says:

    Oh yeah, RedA, that could have been what Wenger meant, JET is a big ‘un.
    I can’t remember how he came across when I watched him at Barnet. A bit Kanu-like in his movements maybe.
    I won’t ask where you’ve been either DanD – the prospect of a northern winter fills me with less than glee, but welcome back.

  56. 26may1989 says:

    Chary, I wouldn’t liken JET to Kanu – he’s as tall as Kanu but with a much bigger build, it’s nigh-on impossible to force him off the ball. From the various reserve games I’ve seen on AOTV, he tends to like running towards goal from a deep-ish position, whether from the right wing or down the centre. He has good skills in terms of ball retention, passing and shooting, has reasonable pace and a surprising degree of mobility for a big guy. I think he’s like a bigger version of Steven Gerrard. I was disappointed JET didn’t play at WHL but really hope he gets a game tonight.

  57. Red Arse says:

    CharyB,

    He seemed a surprisingly fast dribbler in a “bumbling/stumbling” way, and because of his “puppy fat” bulk, the opposition could rarely get the ball off him.

    Did not really remind me of Kanu, except the height maybe, because of the physique discrepancy and he is left footed.

  58. charybdis1966 says:

    I have to admit guys, from where I was watching JET I could have been looking at someone else entirely.
    He was definitely no slim jim though that much I’m sure of.

  59. Red Arse says:

    Oi 26,

    Are you reading my comments? Snap!

    I think our man CharyB must have been having a toddy to keep out the cold, because JET, in the flesh, is an even bigger unit than he seems on TV, and very skilful, a la Jack.

  60. 26may1989 says:

    Great minds RA…..

    Though I don’t think I would put JET’s skill level quite up there with LJ’s – JET is very skilful but I can’t say he reaches the sublime levels that Wilshere reaches in terms of touch and vision.

  61. Big Raddy says:

    I have every confidence in the speed AW takes players forward. If JET is ready then he will play. Similarly with Vela, who has been a great disappointment so far, his career goes one step forward two back. Though from what I read he is a big party animal and perhaps AW is trimming his wings.

  62. Red Arse says:

    Spot on 26.

    I did not mean JET is on the same plane as Jack, (different type of players, of course) but I meant to imply he is not just about brawn.

    He has made some great goals, for the different kids teams, because he can provide some beautifully incisive passes. Lets hope we see that tonight! :-)

  63. charybdis1966 says:

    Nah RedA – it was August when I went to the Barnet game so I needed a choc ice if anything; I think I was distracted by the legs on Chesney’s girl friend. The shorts she almost had on left little to the imagination.

  64. Red Arse says:

    CharyB, :-)

    Double darn it! I saw JET, but I would rather have seen the legs, but I didn’t.

  65. Rasp says:

    Hi guys,

    I reckon JET will make it one day. I think he has similar potential to Diaby at the same age.

  66. charybdis1966 says:

    She was near the turnstiles at the cricket ground end of the ground.
    Raspers will attest to the Briggitte Neilsen-like pins, RedA – he saw them too.

  67. Neamman says:

    My oint stands i think, we have the best squad in the EPL. Our second 11 would be in the top 6-7 of the EPL

  68. SharkeySure says:

    2.2 players, makeweights etc…lol

  69. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Afternoon all,
    The League Cup…ah, err ummm. Well, where I stand from where I’m sitting is this. I remember being very excited indeed going to the Wembley Finals against Liverpool and Luton. In recent years I have been all for playing the young guns and I believe it has paid great dividends. However, there is a slight stink in the air over this not winning stuff business, so not amazingly, I have a solution. So as to dilute the accusations that it is a trophy not worth bothering about once we win the thing, let’s make it a double. What I mean is, win it AND something else in the same season.
    Here’s a thought. It could be THREE trips down Wembley way this season, what with the CL Final being on home turf. So this could be a little warm up, an aperitif, an amuse-bouche!

  70. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Charybdis 2:26
    Love it. 2.2 players. Lansbury and an under 8. :-)

  71. MickyDidIt89 says:

    BR,
    Thanks for post. I have a feeling AW may spring one on us. Cesc and JET?

  72. RockyLives says:

    Redders: “I did not mean JET is on the same plane as Jack”
    Jet – Plane… was that deliberate??

    Also liked your earlier one about the muppet from Wolves: “Well qualified you might think, to break wind, but sadly not qualified to advise our genius manager Arsene.”

    Whoever is collecting the one-liners should definitely put that one in.

  73. MickyDidIt89 says:

    How do you make the whistling noise in words..phwooo, no. hwvoooo, no. I think I may need some of those weird symbols. Now, where are they…tools, no…safety, no…page, oops just got lost. Ooo hello again

  74. MickyDidIt89 says:

    And lo, Rocky did appeareth. Hello Rocky.

  75. 26may1989 says:

    Micky, Cesc and JET were in my predicted line-up, so here’s hoping you’re right!

    Well done for references to Liverpool in 1987 and Luton in 1988, both epic games, albeit with contrasting outcomes. Sheff Weds in 1993 can’t be described in such fond terms.

  76. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Hey, just had a thought. When AW says 80% of his strongest line up, maybe he is being very cunning, and that is an average over the ninety mins. In other words, hit them with a full strength team right from the off, and sub 4.4 of them in the second half.

  77. MickyDidIt89 says:

    26.5.89,
    Yeah, agree. I went to the first two but was way too big headed to bother with the Wednesday game! Either that, or I was still drunk from ’89.

  78. MickyDidIt89 says:

    As I remember, Liverpool had never lost when Rush scored first. Until then.

  79. 26may1989 says:

    Don’t worry Micky, other than seeing Tony Adams break Steve Morrow’s shoulder in the celebrations, you missed precisely nothing in 1993. The only thing worse was the FA Cup Final that season, which destroyed my remaining faith in George Graham, despite us winning a second trophy of the season.

    And you’re right about that Ian Rush record – destroyed by the ugliest pair of goals Charlie Nicholas ever scored.

  80. MickyDidIt89 says:

    26.5.89
    “The only thing worse was the FA Cup Final that season”..Wembley semi against you know who. Nasty.

  81. Big Raddy says:

    In the break between the Saturday and Wednesday Sheff Wed,. games I took possession of a new convertible – it was a beauty; dark metallic blue, auto, leather interior … a fantastic piece of kit. The Weds game was played on a warm day and I picked up the lads and drove top down to& from the ground.

    Happy Days, but crap football. For the replay there were hardly any SW fans and who could blame them?

  82. Big Raddy says:

    5.35 There was no need for that MIcky…. Grrrrrr

  83. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Enough bad talk.
    Tonight is going to be tough, and I reckon AW will field a very strong side. The youngsters people keep referring to are really quite experienced now. We have a very strong squad where second half substitutions should not weaken us. So its out of the blocks at full thrust for me.

  84. Red Arse says:

    Micky, :-)

    “where I stand from where I’m sitting! :-)

    I have one for you!

    Last night, in the middle of the day, an empty lorry full of bricks, ran over a dead cat and nearly killed it. It is now recovering, in the best of health, ready to die at any minute!

  85. MickyDidIt89 says:

    BR,
    I am not telling you what I was driving in those days, but I am not entirely sure that it had one of those engine things in it.

  86. MickyDidIt89 says:

    RA,
    Very good!!

  87. Big Raddy says:

    No Sol tonight. Shame.

    I didn’t write much about the Barcodes for lack of time but I expect them to play a weakened team. They beat the Chavs with an understrength side and will be looking to do the same tonight.

    For them 3 points on Sunday is far more important when they host Sunderland in the first NE derby in some time. Hughton will want to have fresh legs ahead of such a high profile game.

  88. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Off out for an hour or two. Catch any on-liners for the game.

  89. Big Raddy says:

    Micky. The power of Leasing :-)

  90. Red Arse says:

    Any of you guys got Windows Mail?

    A strange thing happened to my laptop overnight. My email software has been transformed into a very nice Windows Office lookalike.

    I’m not complaining exactly, because it is heaps better than it was, but a software company giving you a nice product at no cost, without telling you, is a bit spooky! :-)

  91. RockyLives says:

    Hello Micky. Dipping in and out as I’m supposed to be working.
    The 80% team has got us all thinking… and suggesting, as you did, that it might include substitutes – well, my O Level maths doesn’t stretch that far.

  92. Red Arse says:

    Rocky,

    I suspect that Mickey might have been suggesting that Arsene’s 80/20 split, i.e. 9/2 (rounding down rather than lopping off limbs), could be fiddled, so that it could be 100/0 in the first half, and 60/40 in the second half.

    Therefore, provided he substituted like for like, (experience for experience et seq) it would work fine, provided he had a suitably constituted subs bench. :-)

  93. Patagonia says:

    Nice Blog, keep up the good work
    i will visit this blog more often…

    cheers

  94. Big Raddy says:

    Welcome Patagonia

    RA. I don’t think he will go that way, I expect my team above (perhaps minus Song).

    We shall know soon enough :-)

  95. Red Arse says:

    BR

    I was only trying to second guess what Micky was suggesting, with tongue in cheek, I suspect, in response to Rocky’s comment.

    I think your suggested team looks about right. :-)

  96. RockyLives says:

    Redders, my brain hurts.

  97. Red Arse says:

    Rocky, :-)

    Me too! I am off now for some much needed alcoholic imbibing. :-)

  98. RockyLives says:

    And I’m about to slope off from work to watch the match in a fine Canadian pub.
    Come On You Rip-Roaring Gunners….!!!!

  99. kelsey – are you about? I’ve done the deal, it should all be ok now ;)

  100. Rasp says:

    Going back to one of sharkey’s famous typo’s at the start of the day (10:05), I hope Arsène knows the difference between ‘a trophy’ and ‘atrophy’ :?

  101. Big Raddy says:

    lol Rasp Twice today….

  102. Big Raddy says:

    Ooooh I was close. Only two mistakes Eastmond for Song, and Vela in ahead of Lansbury.

  103. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Back,
    Don’t like the team. Hope someone was right and Newcastle field a weakened side.
    It will be interesting to see Vela for the full ninety, as I for one, am yet to be convinced. You will have to excuse me, as I will be typing with my mouth full. I am on my own, in my own home, so I can.

  104. Irishgunner says:

    Evening all – come on you Gunners!!

    Back from the Lady Gaga gig, if I had to compare her to anything Arsenal it would be Bergkamp’s goal against Newcastle – there I said it :) She’s a legend that woman …. and rather cute, she’s so ickle :)

  105. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Strewth, early Gig

  106. Irishgunner says:

    It was yesterday – last night Mickey, just traveled back home today :)

  107. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Seriously Irish,
    I am no big fan of anything post Clash (classical aside), but I read an article in the Sunday Times comparing Gaga to Madonna. Tore Gaga to shreds. Now, even I can see that she has more talent in her little fingure than the appalling Madonna.

  108. Micky – did you type that with your mouth full ;)

  109. kelsey says:

    I am back.

    We beat Portugal 26 -11.I know it doesn’t mean anything to you .

    Thanks peaches.

    Hi dandan

    Seen our bench tonight,Cesc,Arshavin etc.

    Enjoy.

  110. 90 minutes of The Yummy One will suit me – maybe tonight you’ll all see what I see ;)

    Ooh irish, your yummy one is the captain :lol:

  111. Well done kelsey

    Hi dandan

    Enjoy the game everyone

  112. Irishgunner says:

    Mickey – I read that article and laughed so hard. The author was meant to be a feminist and yet she criticized Gaga for “being ugly” – I mean you can’t make that level of stupidity up :lol:

    Peaches – To make my day complete he has to score.

  113. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Yesh Preeches

  114. Big Raddy says:

    What a start. More clinical finishing & we would be 3 up.

  115. Irishgunner says:

    Well done Kozzer

  116. Rasp says:

    Sorry Raddy, but Nik’s got the first touch of a hippo :(

  117. Rasp says:

    Djourou has been poor and EE is proving why he’s a good RB, he runs for running’s sake.

  118. Rasp says:

    Some fierce tackles going in. I feel sorry for Gibbs, his injuries are never to do with inherent weakness, but unfortunate tackles.

  119. Big Raddy says:

    Rasp. No need to apologise – I don’t take it personally.

    Fine game filled with mistakes from almost everyone. What a save from Chesney after a dreadful attempt at at a tackle

  120. kelsey says:

    memories of burnley from our nic.

    what can you say about lionel ?

    vela ?

  121. Big Raddy says:

    A comedy goal to cap a comical first half :-D

  122. Rasp says:

    Vela has been poor and he knows it. The goal was a fluke but we deserve to be one ahead.

  123. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Really dont think we need Eastmond AND Denilson. I would take Eastmond off, Cesc on, Ros out wide right and stick Theo down the middle next to Bendy. Actually, no I wouldn’t, I would take Vela off…oh bollocks

  124. dandan says:

    Time IMHO to say goodbye to Vela, we have better options in the squad.

  125. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Who’s the bloke in the comentary box with the make up on..clearsil ad or what

  126. kelsey says:

    thank you dandan.even if you are a year late :)

  127. kelsey says:

    i think chesney tipped the ball over from that pile driver from smith

  128. Rasp says:

    Hi dandan, good to have you back :P

  129. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Is JET on the bench?

  130. dandan says:

    Lansbury showed against the spuds that he knew where the goal was

  131. kelsey says:

    Subs: Fabianski, Sagna, Fabregas, Arshavin, Emmanuel-Thomas, Lansbury, Nordtveit.

  132. dandan says:

    Thank you all for your greetings

  133. Rasp says:

    I believe so Micky, JET on for Vela? – they’re both left footers. Arsène never sems to sub players who are having a nightmare, I think he doesn’t want to undermine their confidence – I’d yank him off (not in the physical sense :? )

  134. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Cheers Kelsey,
    Agree BR, if he pulled Vela off now, it would be very hard to see a way back.

  135. Rasp says:

    Chesney’s Arsenal’s number 2, bye bye Almunia

  136. van Persie inadvertantly destroyed Vela’s career – 2 years ago Vela and Nikki were really amazing together, great understanding, then van Persie got injured and Nikki came into the first team. He and Vela were separated and have never been the same since.

    2-0

  137. kelsey says:

    have to admit luck is on our side

    the worm has turned

    and eboue is on something

  138. Big Raddy says:

    Evening DD, welcome home

  139. kelsey says:

    if you say so peaches :)

  140. Big Raddy says:

    Kelsey Congratulations on your convincing win. A good week for Gooners

  141. Eboue – you have to love him don’t you, great against a not too brilliant side – wouldn’t want to see him at left back against anyone special though.

    Irish has a rubbish stream so can’t do a match report, anyone fancy doing one?

  142. Big Raddy says:

    Danish TV saying Theo was offside. Was he?

  143. I love him and really want him to stay but he just doesn’t seem to click anymore :(

  144. Rasp says:

    Hi peaches, two dodgy goals but I’ll take them.

  145. No the problem was that Nikki bodychecked the Newcastle player and didn’t need to as no-one was going to catch Theo – could have been a foul against Nikki

  146. Hi Rasp – its fine to have carved out fine chances and then score with dodgy goals – kind of redresses the balance :)

  147. kelsey says:

    where is eboue actually playing ?

  148. Big Raddy says:

    SuperMac looks well.

  149. kelsey says:

    sometimes you have to win ugly.

    nic scored a great goal at city but tonight ……..

  150. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Left back. In place of injured Gibbs

  151. MickyDidIt89 says:

    or right wing!

  152. Rasp says:

    No No No, don’t bring Cesc on, what’s the point? It’s not worth the risk……..

  153. Rasp says:

    Bring Jet on for Vela, give us a bit more bulk defensively

  154. kelsey says:

    djorou makes kos look world class

  155. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Poor old Vela

  156. Rasp says:

    I just don’t get Wenger sometimes, that’s ridiculous to risk Cesc.

  157. kelsey says:

    jet is not on the bench

  158. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Oh shit. Cesc in same county as Barton!

  159. Big Raddy says:

    Peaches. I don’t love Ebway. He is an OK reserve RB but tonight he is showing what an unintelligent player he is. His positional sense is appalling

  160. But Raddy – he’s just so funny …….

    ……….only when we’re winnng of course :oops:

    Why isn’t JET on the bench???????????????

  161. Come on that was great vision from Djourou to cut out that pass

  162. Big Raddy says:

    JET must be injured as AW said he would play a part tonight

  163. kelsey says:

    the standard of crossing by both teams has been dreadful

  164. I don’t see what Djourou has done wrong

  165. Rasp says:

    Sagna’s been poor

  166. Rasp says:

    The STRIKING VIKING ……

  167. MickyDidIt89 says:

    BBBBBBBBBBeeeeeeennnnndddddyyyyy

  168. kelsey says:

    i knew nic would eventually listen to me.

  169. Big Raddy says:

    Told you …… :-)

  170. Now that was a great goal from Nikki as predicted by Raddy in his title :lol:

  171. Well done everyone :lol:

  172. So, JET’s coming on????????????????????

  173. Big Raddy says:

    Who said JET wasn’t on the bench?

  174. kelsey says:

    blame the bbc they said jet wasn’t playing

  175. Rasp says:

    Peaches, Djourou has been outmuscled by smaller players

  176. Can-can time :lol:

    Who shall we have next round???????????

    Can we choose as we’ve beaten two premiership teams ….

  177. MickyDidIt89 says:

    From a strangely uninspired 2-0, this now looks gripping after Bendy’s great finish and now seeing JET. Anyone catch his 3 against WHam in the reserves?

  178. Big Raddy says:

    Goodbye Almunia

  179. kelsey says:

    bye bye almunia

  180. Ok, I love Theo more than Vela – its official :D

    Great save by Chesney just beforehand

  181. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Theo so dangerous when set free down the middle

  182. kelsey says:

    barton and smith are scum

  183. Irishgunner says:

    Missed Bendtner goal till the replay cos of the fucking awful stream but saw Theo’s 2nd.

    Our fans are epic :)

  184. Someone tell Nikki to put a coat on please its cold up there – even for Vikings

  185. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Home tie please

  186. Anyone want to write a match report?

  187. We must be deserving of a home tie now, surely :roll:

  188. Rasp says:

    Joey Barton is still a nasty piece of s**t, deliberate deadleg on Eastmond and now scythes through Cesc – that’s why Cesc shouldn’t have been risked.

  189. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Irish,
    Spot on. Epic away fans.

  190. Big Raddy says:

    No surprise that Barton attacked Cesc. Why did AW give the jailbird the opportunity?

  191. kelsey says:

    my man of the match is kos

  192. Rasp says:

    Chesney has the last decisive punch of the game – he was excellent, big and strong.

  193. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Definate drink for Chezzer

  194. Big Raddy says:

    My stream was fine, must be Scandi efficiency!!

    Chesney had an outstanding night.

    We slammed a poor Newcastle with 9 changes from Saturday – “Haway the Lads”

  195. Big Raddy says:

    Men oM. Chesney, Kos, TR

  196. dandan says:

    Gnite lads great to be back, but bed calls. byeee

  197. Rasp says:

    Manure in the next round anyone?

  198. Big Raddy says:

    Anyone at home

  199. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Nite all.

  200. Carlito11 says:

    I’ve heard fab2 and chesny don’t get on. Aparrently they’re poles apart

  201. Ha ha ha ha ha ha Carlito :lol:

  202. RockyLives says:

    I’ll do a quick report Peaches

  203. Neamman says:

    Well I got the team right apart from Eastmond for Lansbury which i didnt see coming at all. happy for NB to be scoring so soon after his return. 2 goals in what 1 and a quarter games? Theo back scoring, it looks to me like we are for real this year.

  204. kelsey says:

    Morning all. No doubt in my mind that we deserved to win even allowing that Newcastle rested several players and we had in particularly Walcott,Bedntner and a cameo from Fabregas coming back from injuries.Early chances went astray,and there is no doubt we were fortunate with the opening goal, and the second stood only because of this daft offside/onside rule.One can’t judge a keeper on one game but Szczesny was outstanding,and with Fabianski regaining confidence our concerns over a new keeper may be over.Theo feels more comfortable in a central position and it showed with his brace..On the down side this may be the end of Almunia and Carlos Vela,who IMO regardless of limited first team appearances,just isn’t good enough.Both our full backs still can’t cross a ball, though the injury to Gibbs,gave us no natural left back.and Eboue appeared to want to cover numerous positions and not for the first time was theatrical.Barton is a thug and he knows exactly what he is doing.it was a hard fought game and it showed the gulf between the top clubs and others in the PL.
    PS:some thought i was harsh on JD during the match, and my point was that he was extremely shaky for the first twenty five minutes,and especially when playing away,a defender has to focused from the first minute.(remember at City) he did get better but to me he remains forth choice.

  205. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    Evening all

    That was a comprehensive win. The keeper looked great apartfrom his fluff early on that Koz covered for him.

    Big Johan was 20% better as well. He did the 1 percenters when it counted in the 2nd half. Great stuff!

  206. kelsey says:

    evening gnarley.

    peaches kindly put my comments on the new post as they may be relevant.I will be back later, thanks.

  207. Will do kelsey – hope you carry on winning ;)

  208. SharkeySure says:

    Chesney > Believe the hype !!

  209. Theres a NEW POST …….

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