Match report – The fantastic story of Theo, The Ox and the Fox in the Box

 

How long have we been hoping for a result like this? We said for a long time that somebody will get a hiding from Arsenal sooner or later and today Blackburn – together with a handful of wasted bin bags, filled with nothing but hot air – were taken to the Bin-Bangers.

 Arsene decided to rest the tired Ramsey and also Sagna, who only just returned from a long injury. Blackburn’s Steve Kean did us a massive favour by leaving out the always-impressive-against-us Samba, and Yakubu was still suspended. So, given the weaker line-up by Blackburn, and the fact we were playing at home with a relatively strong line-up, we were of course expected to win. But, haven’t we been here a few times before this season …?

First Half

Arsenal started brightly and got just what the psychiatrist ordered: an early goal. Rosicky found Walcott with a through-pass towards the by-line and Theo kept his composure to pass a fine ball in between the stranded Robinson and the Blackburn Defence, resulting in an easy tap-in for the always alert Robin van Persie: 1-0 to Arsenal in the second minute!

After that, Arsenal dominated without being particularly dangerous in front of the Blackburn goal, although Vermaelen came close once with an effort against the post.

Blackburn tried to keep it tight and were reasonably well-organised in the first part of the first half. Although Arsenal totally dominated in the first half, our lack of thrust and creativity after the early goal, started to subdue the crowd. Out of nothing, Blackburn earned a free-kick in a dangerous position, after Koscielny made a wrong judgement, allowing the ball to bounce after which he had no option but to hold back Anthony Modeste with his arms. It came as no surprise that Blackburn levelled with a superb free-kick by Pedersen. He is one of the best free-kick takers in the PL, and also on this occasion he produced a very fine effort which Szczesny did well to still get a few fingers to, but to no avail: 1-1.

The equaliser tested our patience and resolve. Of course it was against the run of play and therefore undeserved, but that’s how football often goes. Luckily, we did not have to wait long to see whether Arsenal would respond in the right way. A very fine through ball by Song – he assists when he wants, it seems – reached Theo in an identical spot as where he was for the first goal. Also on this occasion Theo kept his composure, as he put in a subtle cross to the once again alert super-Dutchman, who loftily lifts the ball with his ‘inferior’ right foot over the leg of a defender to slot in his second goal: 2-1.

Two minutes later and Arsenal score the goal of the afternoon. It not only was Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain first PL game, but his goal, and RvP’ assist, were reminiscent of a DB10/Th14 goal in our recent, glorious past. RvP just showed with his assist what a complete football player he is. After scoring a Poacher’s brace already, this time he finds a Bergkamp-esque through-ball to the Ox, surgically carving open the Blackburn defence in a split-second. AOC takes the ball into the sixteen yard box with a fine first touch, and with an even better second touch gets himself in an excellent scoring position. The adrenalin must be boiling inside his 18 year young body, but he stays calm and scores with the coolness similar to Thierry Henry’s in his very best days: 3-1.

This was the pivotal moment of the game, not just in terms of quality, but also by having created a two-goal lead, Arsenal had settled its, recently so over-tested, nerves. However, Arsenal were then helped further by a reckless lunge of Givet on RvP, after which the former was rightly sent-off. Luckily, very luckily, RvP managed to lift himself off the ground, a fraction of a second before Givet’s two-footed impact. With a 3-1 lead, against 10-men Blackburn all was looking good for the mighty Arsenal.

Second Half

Arsenal meant business from the start of the second half. It clearly was not prepared to sit back on its lead and soon it was rewarded for its attitude. Arteta, who throughout the first half had made football look so easy with his composure and positioning, pounced on the rebound and slotted home a decent shot from just inside the box: 4-1!

These are the sort of goals we have been missing this season and it was just what we needed to keep the momentum going.

In the 54th minute, 3 minutes after the fourth Arsenal goal, we scored another fine goal. Theo Walcott, who played with real verve and focus during the entire game, made a strong run across the Blackburn sixteen-yard box after which he found the Ox in a bit of space. The Ox did not hesitate for a second and took Theo’s pass in one go, shooting past Robinson’s right-hand corner: 5-1.

Then it was Coquelin’s turn to provide an assist, which RvP despatched once again from close range with this right foot: 6-1.

An easier hat-trick he will never get! Coquelin was impressive throughout the game; he plays with a confidence, maturity and physicality which are way beyond his age. On top of that he has a classy style about him, in the way he runs and he passes the ball: another fine prospect! After that, Arsene made a couple of substitutions: Benayoun and TH12 came on for The Ox and super-Song. Very surprisingly RvP stayed on the field!

Understandably, the game lost some of its intensity after the substitutions and the 6-1 score. However, just before the end TH12 scored a somewhat fortuitous seventh goal from another RvP assist, to complete the total rout: 7-1!

Conclusions

This is a very good result for Arsenal and just what we needed. Of course it is just one game and it would be wrong to get carried away. Blackburn was weakened by the omission/non-availability of Samba and Yakubu and the sending-off of Givet was also helpful. However, seven goals from eleven shots on target is a fantastic return, and four ‘non-RvP goals’ in one match is also very encouraging and much-needed at this stage. Results like this build confidence and bring back the feel-good-factor.

The Ox was phenomenal: his goals were classy and taken so maturely for his age, but on top of that he carries such a threat and thrust with him, every time he starts an attacking move. He reminds me a bit of the ‘Portuguese Ronaldo’ and also a bit of Messi. It is early days of course, but the Ox is the sort of player Arsenal has cried out for, ever since the departure of Dennis Bergkamp (not that they are a similar type of football player).

Theo proved that he can recover from one game to the next and I guess we all have to get used to the fact that he will have good days and average days throughout his career (most wingers suffer from the same problem). It will be interesting to see how the Gerv, Theo and The Ox – and eventually Ryo – will compete for the wing-positions. I wish I could incorporate Arshavin, but it feels his time is up at Arsenal.

Song and Arteta had great games and Rosicky made a decent enough contribution too. The BFG, Koz and Vermaelen had relatively easy games and made no mistakes (except for Koz in the first part of the first half).

TV looks like a Bouncer at a Tea-Party in the LB position, and I am sure he wants to be back as CB asap. Szczesny had also little to do but what he did was good (except for one moment in the first half when he decided to come to the edge of his box to clear a high ball which he messed up: it could easily have resulted in an embarrassing outcome for him).

Coquelin was superb and I just cannot believe our luck that we have so many young players coming through and making it into our first-11 at the moment.

But, ultimately this is the story of the Theo, The Ox, and the Fox in the Box:

Theo: 3 top assists, 0 goals.

The Ox: 0 assists, 2 goals.

The Fox in the Box: 2 assists, 3 goals.

Total: 5 assists, and 5 goals. Simply fantastic!

Player ratings:

Szczesny, Koz, TV, BFG: 7. All did their jobs well, but they were not tested much today.

Le Coq: 8. Fantastic game, with a fine assist as well.

Arteta, Rosicky, Song – ARS: 7.5. All did their jobs well today and all brought something extra to the game with either a goal (Arteta) or an indirect assist (Rosicky, Song).

TheO, The Ox, and the Fox in the Box: 9. Together they are my Men of the Match.

TotalArsenal.

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311 Responses to Match report – The fantastic story of Theo, The Ox and the Fox in the Box

  1. Rasp says:

    Morning all, I’ll get in first with the superlatives.

    Great match report Total and one I’m sure you had no trouble in constructing.

    Hoooooorrrraaaayyyy, we got the ball forward at pace and destroyed them from the flanks.

    Gone was the dillydallying, it was incisive, fluid and a joy to watch.

    Everything has been said about the Ox, but Coquelin was fantastic – we have to find a place for this boy in the team. Theo had one of his best games, if he can be strong when the going gets tough, he will be the player we all want him to be – but yesterday he was superb and unselfish.

    Arsene – threaten to resign unless the Board give RvP a new contract and pay him £150k a week or whatever he wants.

    My man Arteta was wonderful and some of Song’s through balls were excellent.

    The only slight worry for me is that Sz seems a little off form – but he’s still the best we have and I’m sure it will return.

  2. MickyDidIt89 says:

    BR,
    Tracking beaver in Montmatre :-)
    Postage.

  3. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi Rasp, thanks for the editing and adding in the great pictures! :)

    Apologies for one or two inaccuracies. Peaches only ‘persuaded’ me to do the MR at half time. I was in a pub, with a couple of pints of San Miguel in my body, and had made no notes. I only managed to see the match again around midnight, and realised that a couple things happened differently from what I remembered. TV hit the post after we got to 3-1 for example – and not during our 1-0 to 1-1 period. I also said that the Ox took his second goal in one go, but he actually touched the ball once before he slotted in.

    Hope you still enjoy it though :)

  4. MickyDidIt89 says:

    TA,
    I’ve had a brilliant idea. You are a master of the match report, but how about saving yourself time and having a template for games when The Ox starts, because quite frankly, every game is going to go the same way and all you will need to do is amend name of opposition and the players around our man.

  5. Red Arse says:

    Before reading what looks like a wonderful Match report, I need SlimGingaSky to get advice or to have a moan at.

    I have the bloody ‘no satellite signal’ and therefore no TV picture.

    There is a great lump of snow around the dish, so naturally being bright and inventive I figured I would dislodge it by throwing beautifully made snowballs at it.

    Ahem, after three excellently aimed shots — the snow lump is now a snow lump + 3 snowballs.
    Eff it! — what? — you knew it was a stupid plan? — seemed like a good plan to me and well executed. Bollix.

    So Ginga what to do? Get Virgin did you say? :-)

  6. Big Raddy says:

    TA. Great report as always. Felt like I was there.

    I have said this before but perhaps Theo suffers from playing with Jd who cannot assist offensively. TW has been so much more assured when supported by Coq or Sagna.

    Or is this wishful thinking?

  7. Red Arse says:

    San Miguel will do that to you TA. And Good Morning! :-)

  8. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Oh jees RA,
    You want a virgin as well as speading your love all over the place tonight. Unbelievable.

  9. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Boooooooooooooooooooooooooooo, sorry, just caught site of the MiL.
    Great stuff Total,
    I`m jealous of you lot having all this snow, all I`ve got is loads of Sun to bathe in !
    Bunjaku looks the business but alas I think you`ll find he left us, ( like to know why ? ) hope I`m wrong . :(

  10. Rasp says:

    No worries TA, the details are almost irrelevant, it was a great preformance, we created multiple chances and converted a very healthy percentage.

    That team had perfect balance, and that has seldom been the case of late due to the injuries.

    It was right to rest Ramsey. Rosicky was excellent and moved the ball forward a bit quicker than Ramsey and that contributed to the flow of the game.

  11. MickyDidIt89 says:

    GliC,
    Have you really got sun? Might change tack and head to Bude.

  12. Dandan says:

    Smashing report on a terrific game, your report should make some of our recent bloggers hang their heads in shame. But fear not we will have a couple of euphoric days and then the detractors will rise again. as for Kelsey any more “I don’t rate Theo from him” and the boys will be on the next plane. You have been warned :-)

  13. That’s a very fair report TA, Rasp says it all “Gone was the dillydallying, it was incisive, fluid and a joy to watch”. The difference was that balls played to Walcott were behind the full back allowing Theo to use his pace and ball control to get into the box and lay off some wonderful passes.

    The pace of the game was dictated by our mid-field and was much quicker without the lateral passing so favoured by the absent Ramsey.

    As well as signing the excellent van Persie for another five years, at least, get The Ox on a life-time contract, this player is going to be awesome.

    Goals from Oxlade-Chamberlain. Arteta and Henry as well a Van Persie hat-trick, a one man team? I don’t think so!

  14. Gooner in Exile says:

    Morning all fine report TA, pedantic I know but the wording suggests it was Ox’s first game in PL, you have obviously expunged the memory of ManUre from your mind :D.

    A fine report and correct to enjoy the moment, as some always say the low points make the highs like this taste sweeter.

    I have the FootballForst full 90 to watch which I must do. My Dad tells me Ox was amazingly good. Someone compared him to Rooney last night, someone needs to remind the black bin brigade (altho I doubt they are really Emirates regulars) what ManUre paid for the last great English youngster, then look at Rambo, Jack, Ox, Coq and Szczesny and realise why we do things the way we do.

    Coq’s skill to make room for the RvP assist was beautiful.

    The best bit of play from Ox that I caught on MotD highlights didn’t actually result in a goal. He made the byeline, looked up saw 8 defenders and Theo and RvP, rather than wasting the cross he cut back looked up again and saw Arteta arriving and picked him out to volley over. Vision! As the ball goes over you seeTheo react as if to say “where have you put that?” then he realises Arteta thundering in and becomes alive again.

    Happy day to be a Gooner.

    Most pleasurable after game seeing Piers Morgan getting stick from all sides and all fans for his crazily negative to boasting about yesterday. I’d have more respect for him if he was more like the regular ultranaysayers on here….and continue to berate when we lose but not present when we win and results go well. Flip flopping like Morgan does and the way he does it is not support.

  15. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Rasp,
    Agree with everything you say. I don’t want to spark a downer, but I’ve said so many times that although I think AR is brilliant, he is not an AM. Ros does the job better, but its all irrelevant as soon the Ox will take over and instigate world domination.

  16. Rasp says:

    Hi Micky, the pundits are describing the Ox as a winger – do you see him playing more centrally in the future?

    I’m happy with him out wide, but that does pose the problem of fitting Gerv and Theo into the team as well.

  17. mj says:

    Its no suprise that theo had a great game yesterday. The team played to his strenghts yesterday and that’s what made him effective. Its true his finishing sometimes is not great… But hees a player we need in the team. Hees the only guy whose constantly trying to go behind defenders and therefore I’ve always seen him as important to the way we play

  18. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Rasp,
    Do concentrate on what your followers are saying. Yes, I do think Oxo will be an AM in time, and I have been saying that for a while. He is going to be miles better than Messi :-)

  19. MickyDidIt89 says:

    With him in the side, the team has discovered the “thrust” I was after last season.

  20. slimgingergooner says:

    RA,

    Getting a Virgin in will definately take your mind off the lack of TV, but you will soon get bored!

    My advice would be to stop throwing snowballs at the dish!!!

    Either get up a ladder and shift the snow, or better still, call Sky to send out an engineer! You could try and realign the dish yourself but might be a bit of a ball-ache. Could save you £60 though!!!

    Hope this helps, though I’m pretty sure it doesn’t! :)

  21. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    At this moment It Is Micky, but being between two moors it can change quickly, Boode Is usually drier than here .

  22. Rasp says:

    :lol: Micky, mine was more of a rhetorical question. I’m not getting carried away with the comparison believe me – but I think the Ox could potentially be an AM but more in the Messi mould. I think he is better getting on the end of things and being the receiver of the pass from the AM. He has 2 good feet and so can play anywhere across the park.

  23. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Micky,
    Do you buy the Western Morning News ?, well there`s a piece about a Chilli farm in South Devon you can visit !

  24. RA – the nice people at sky will probably tell you to unplug your sky box for five minutes and then plug it back in, make sure your sky box in on and then wait another five minutes before trying it out. Have a go……..my sky died last night but following that procedure had it up and running without needing to call sky :)

  25. Gooner in Exile says:

    Rasp/Micky I think there is a likelihood that you will both be right.

    As I see it we will have three attackers eventually supporting RvP and their job will not be to be a winger and an attacking midfielder but to chop and change fluidly and not in a “switch wings” way.

    Ox’s run for his first yesterday was all about realising where RvP was going to receive the ball and where he could offer the most threat.

  26. MickyDidIt89 says:

    GliC,
    Thanks. Chili Farm I know, in fact there isn’t a food producer in Devon I don’t know. Its part of my job.
    Off out for the day.

  27. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Lot`s of talk about Virgin`s Beavers today, I knew It was only a matter of time before It came down to my level !. :lol:

  28. Red Arse says:

    TA, a really enjoyable read! :-) That Peaches obviously has a keen eye for talent — and authors too!! :-)

    Give up your HR profession immediately, and apply for a job as a sports journalist. Your reports are better than so many I read in newspapers.

    Balanced, concise, knowledgeable and written with an easy flow, your prose would be a credit for anyone who has English as a first language.

    As you are an author from the Netherlands I would appreciate a little double dutch, occasionally, please! :-) :-)

  29. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Great write up TA

    More important than yesterdays result is press reports that Theo is set to sign a new contract. Not because the kid is Pele, but because its a statement of intent from the club, and another indicator that the climate is shifting in our favour. Everything is in place at Arsenal, the same cannot be said about our rivals. 10 years of planning is about to reap its benefits, premeirship dominance first, then European. Fantastic times ahead.

  30. Red Arse says:

    Thanks, Peacher, and good morning. :-)

    I will try your method and keep my fingers crossed!!

    Thanks to you too SuperGinge! I was thinking of climbing up to give it a shake, and the satellite dish too, but the funny thing is I cannot remember too many monkeys that have evolved to climb who weigh 19 stone and have no sense of balance! :-)

    The thought of crashing thru the roof and sueing you for climb-ist advice does appeal! :-) Well done to the Rhinos – good start to the season.

  31. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    MankiniMan,
    I`m beginning to think your telescope has a “seeing the future lens” ! :)

  32. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Redders,
    19 stone !, would you like to meet a 25 stone spudette ?, when 2 moons collide ! :lol:

  33. Red Arse says:

    Micky,

    Your concern regarding the sullying of a virgin’s reputation is noted — my concern however, is that there aren’t any to be found in Herts or Kent.
    Seems they are all being ‘fanged’ at Pinewood studios by those greedy bloody vampires. Tsk.

    Off to try Peaches’s satellite remedy — better work or there will be tears!!

  34. Morning RA :) – I don’t think you need to try and clear the snow from the dish…………… just saying ………….

    Horticultural health warning – if you have any Cordylines, Phormiums or Bamboos in your garden that are weighed down with snow they would appreciate having the snow removed ………….. a gentle brush with a broom should do it.

  35. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Cornwall, its always ready and alert for future action. hahaha.

    Redders, i had the same problem. I got on the roof armed with a boiled kettle and let the dish have it. Problem was resolved immediatly, but the most pleasing aspect for me was avoiding the Rod Hull syndrome.

  36. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Off to dump some GG pooh around my plants, maybe some down my pants to help with the growth , a Kniphofia would be nice ! :)

  37. Mike Partridge says:

    I believe that in Ox we have now over-replaced Nasir and together with Rosicky, we have found the 2 missing pieces of the jigsaw puzzle to score more goals.

  38. slimgingergooner says:

    RA,

    On second thoughts it might be best to leave the climbing to the chimps!!!

    I just hope you haven’t knocked the dish out of line with the snowballs, otherwise you will need an engineer.

    Great result for the Rhino’s and Arsenal. A Giants win tonight and its all gravy baby!

  39. Morning all, it was a pleasure to meet up with my Arsenal family yesterday, Peachy & Raspers, Maire(Irish) and Chas albeit feeling frozen and strangely with no desire to have a bottle of Peroni !

    Exciting and breathless report on the match TotalA but I hope you won’t mind me pointing the way to my take on the game over here :

    http://www.7amkickoff.com/2012/man-at-the-match-chary-rovers-given-a-spanking-by-rampant-arsenal/

    My thoughts should also include a note for how well Rosicky and Arteta played yesterday aside from the usual suspects TotalA has highlighted so well.

  40. Red Arse says:

    Your Sky fix worked perfectly, Peacher, thank you v. much! :-)

  41. Red Arse says:

    No worries SupaGinge, you might have seen my comment above to Peaches. All good.

    I know my limitations, of which there are many, :-) and climbing roofs with a kettle of boiling hot water a la TerryM would be totally beyond me. :-)

    Incidentally, I was impressed with the Health & Safety practised by the Sky engineers when they updated my dish recently.

    Holding ladders was a “no no”, They drilled small holes in the wall and attached the ladder to the screwed in struts. V sensible!!

    (I have never sued anyone in my life) :-)

  42. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    I thought Jnr Hoilett looked half decent for them, I can see why others are interested.

  43. Glic – it was so rare for Rovers to have any possession it was hard to tell how good Hoilet was – he was a bit sneaky with kicking the ball away when we tried to take quick free kicks,

  44. Wale says:

    It was coquelin that pass the ball to walcot then walcot to RVP for the first goal not Rosicky

  45. TotalArsenal says:

    GiE, you are right, it should have read as ‘first PL goal for the Ox’.. You are right re Ox’ move and final pass to Arteta: that was simply breathtaking football by the young man!! :)

    I am out for while sledging in Norwich (hoping to find a tiny, little hill in this pancake county).

  46. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    True chary, but when he had the ball he looked very tricky !.

    Last year, I had my own slalom course up my top field, this year nothing, I want some snow, I expect a convoy of snow filled cars heading this way and make It snappy coz I`m bored ! :evil:

  47. Got about 5 inches of snow where I am(Buckinghamshire) Glic – I’ll blow some over your way !

    Now let’s hope for a Villa and ManUre win today and a draw in the dippers/spuds game tomorrow.

  48. LB says:

    Alex Song

    Did he play better yesterday?

    No, he did not; he played exactly the same as he did against Bolton which was perfectly fine — the job required of him was performed.

    The difference was that the wings finally came into play and that includes Chamberlain, who for all the slushy love in that is going on right now was ineffectual against Bolton as was Walcott but where The Ox is beyond criticism, for the time being, Theo is not.

    It seemed to me that Walcott and The Ox were competing against each other yesterday the result of which was very healthy and this is going to intensify even further if they start competing to see who can score more goals.

    I liked GIE’s comment above about Walcott: on the brink of telling The Ox off for what seemed like a wasted pass Arteta arrived out of nowhere to volley just over the bar.

    Walcott seems to have this slightly naive idea that he is the senior player and as such has the right to chastise The Ox — I have seen this happen before — quite wrongly in my view.

    There is a saying in the American arms industry to frighten countries into buying their jet fighters.

    “You won’t know where they come from and by the time you do it will be too late”

    Theo you have no idea how much you are going to have to up your game if you want to stay in that team.

  49. Red Arse says:

    I am not exaggerating when I say that the amount of snow that fell around here was approx 10 inches.

    I walked (hill not navigable in car) to get the newspapers and it was coming in over the top of my rubber boots. (Wellies).

    Not nice – it melts and makes your socks wet and your feet even colder. (like I know you care!) :-)

    There is a scientific reason for this — but you are safe — I will shut up – now!! :roll:

  50. slimgingergooner says:

    What is Robbie Keane doing in the MLS?

    He has been Villas’s best player for the last 4 weeks. He should still be in this league.

  51. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    10 inches and snow balls, I need to look at a science degree !.
    Just been for a 21/2 mile run to test my calf/achillies problem, touch wood was ok, If I had 10 inches here i wouldn`t have run in just shorts and vest, I would have skiied ! :)

  52. goonermichael says:

    Great match report. We need Villa to score now.

  53. Nick says:

    In the wake of this result which is the type we should see more of from Arsenal
    Here’s what needs to happen:
    1. Keep the starting midfield that was out there yesterday. It gives us the best combo of creativity, pace, defense, etc.
    2. Give RVP anything he wants and then some to sign a new contract. A new car, shares of Arsenal stock, a statue (with a future space for the Ox next to his) and a weekly wage due to someone of his talent & importance
    3. Go ahead and sell AA23! He’s not getting his spot back anytime soon. Set the Russian free.

  54. goonermichael says:

    glic please tell me that was 2 1/2 not 21.2 miles

  55. goonermichael says:

    That’s nearly a marathon so stupid question I know :(

  56. charybdis1966 says:

    Dam you Demba BA, why couldn’t you stay at the ANC ??!!

  57. goonermichael says:

    get in you dirty ex spud

  58. goonermichael says:

    because Senegal are shit chaty :)

  59. goonermichael says:

    chary sorry

  60. goonermichael says:

    keane must have the naffest goal celebration.

  61. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    gm,
    sorry, i didn`t leave a gap, 2 and 1/2 miles, phew you nearly knackered me , :)

  62. goonermichael says:

    Culann Davies @CWDailyGooner
    Reply RetweetedRetweet
    Delete
    FavoritedFavorite · Close Open Details “@th14Renato: Park Chu Young agent told Korean media: “If he doesn’t play, we will consider to leave in the summer.”” No surprise at all.

    This signing is so stupid. I like him, I’d like to see him get some games.

  63. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    gm,
    That is one mysterious signing, will we ever get to the bottom of it ?. I think the cynics are in the driving seat with that one, It will be interesting to know how many shirts he has sold in Korea ?

  64. dandan says:

    They say a week is a long time in politics, what about blogging and bloggers, do they not change like the wind. Take this excerpt from a post Bolton comment last week……..” Theo doesn’t have it within his personality or ability to be a top class player; he is a mediocre footballer who can run fast.

    Arteta has been great, I’m actually sorry for him because he left a side in disarray and now finds himself in a similar situation at Arsenal.

    We’ve needed someone up front who has the instincts and abilities of a goalscorer for years now and still the style of play dictated by the manager prevents us from accommodating such a player.

    The BoD and/or manager are guilty of using the excuse of building for the future as a smokescreen to cover the fact that they are neglecting the present.

    We have a magnificent stadium and a team in decline.

    Interesting in the light of yesterdays performance, dont you think. How long before, as our injured players return will the problem be not who to play but who the hell do we leave out. Add to that those out on loan. And maybe the smokescreen will turn out to be the truth, hidden not by smoke but by the reaction of those fan’s, who allow their love of the club and emotionional fervour to over rule reason and objectivity.

  65. Brigham says:

    A good report on what was a great game and very much like the old Arsenal that we all love. Yes, it was only Blackburn and also they had 10 men, but you can only beat what is thrown in front of you!

    Good to have a pre-match beer with Peaches, Rasp and Chas in the Tavern yesterday and for Rasp – I told you so! :-)

    The Ox is simply quite an outstanding prospect and I loved the way he ripped past two of the Blackburn defenders at one point in the 2nd half, leaving them both for dead, which prompted me shouting “You two need a ticket to get back in”.

    There was a very young lad behind me yesterday with his Dad who was loving his first ever match watching the Arsenal. He was asking all sorts questions about players, the ground etc and we all answered them, along with his proud Dad. Great to see a youngster taking such an intrest in the Arsenal and it had me remembering my first ever game, with my Dad back in 1969! :-)

    Take care all, back to Scotland for me tomorrow, with a smile on my face as it was a good day yesterday, with England beating the Scots at Murrayfield.

  66. LB says:

    Hahahahaha

    Great comment Dandan.

  67. Gooner in Exile says:

    Lovely story Brigham about the lads first game.

    I’ve been trying to work out what’s the best age, I think I went to my first game about 7/8.

    I’ve seen really young kids who can’t sit still at Emirates and causing their Dad grief.

  68. Irishgunner says:

    Where are those that said Rosicky wasn’t good enough for the Arsenal? EEEEEEEEEEEMH Let’s be avin’ ya (Delia style) …

    I don’t stand by my man for nothing you know, he is such a useful squad player.

    The Ox is amazing, his movement, control and composure is excellent.

  69. goonermichael says:

    that was unlucky

  70. goonermichael says:

    I’d like to watch the scummer’s game but I have to gotg out ion the bloody snow. mind you I’m having some home made vietnamese food so I shouldn’t complain.

  71. goonermichael says:

    dandan Theo had a great game. he still needs to do it more for me. If he carries on like that he can earn what he likes. all he really needs is some consistency.

  72. RockyLives says:

    I knew within about three lines that you’d written this report TA.

    You have an elegant precision to your reporting that I really enjoy.

    The comments are an interesting mix of euphoria and ‘told-you-so’. But after the next dodgy result the other side will be doing their own ‘told you so’ routine.

    Oxo’s performance should not have come as a big surprise. He showed his potential against ManUre and was one of our better players versus Bolton (particularly first half).

    However, I think we should be careful of over-hyping him. He’ll have games where things don’t go for him. It’s easy enough to imagine, a year from now, after he has gone through a wobbly patch, some of the internet community berating him (and AW for signing him).

  73. dandan says:

    Mike the difference is: with full backs pushing up to support him against the double banked marking he normally gets, he has the freedom to lay off and work the openings, his pace can exploit. Rather than get boxed in. Also he had runners in the box to exploit his pull backs, hence the assists.

  74. dandan says:

    Rocky that is exactly the point I was trying to make in my 2.41

  75. Brigham says:

    Rocky, some valid points there regarding the Ox and you are right to remark about us over-hyping him, but the fact that he does look an exciting prospect kind of makes it difficult. ;-) To me, he is already showing signs of being very good player, almost like a mix of Rocky Rocastle and Mark Overmars. He has guile and dribbling skills of both, but he sure does have the grit and bite that Rocky always had.

  76. Where would the fun be if we couldn’t chide each other for going over the top in celebration and defeat. Some players have been poor recently – too many at the same time unfortunately – but yesterday everything clicked and Blackburn needed a hiding so the gods were with us.

    Next Saturday we go to Sunderland where o’Neill has turned the clubs fortunes around since he became their manager. I bet Robin would gladly give up yesterday’s hattrick for a goal against Bolton mid-week and 2 against Sunderland next week but hey ho.

    Newcastle winning wasn’t what we wanted :(

  77. Hi Brigham – nice to see you again yesterday :)

  78. Irishgunner says:

    It seems they’ve got a second decent striker called Demba …

    Newcastle will lose again, if we do what we should till the end of the season we’ll finish ahead of them, plus we’ve to play them again. Villa are shite … people say AW is losing the plot, McLeish brings on Heskey to try and get back into the game, man is a complete clown.

  79. Brigham says:

    Peaches, it was also nice to see you and Rasp again and to also meet Chas and Irish.

  80. Big Raddy says:

    LB / DanDan. I cannot precisely recall who wrote the comment you quote but I doubt it was a regular AA contributor.

    What I love about this community is that we can say how we feel without ran cour .

    I am one of those who think Song has been off form, that he played so much better yesterday is proof of that IMO.

  81. Red Arse says:

    Wale,

    I know you are long gone, but if you are going to point out the mote in our midnight Author’s eye at least get the beam out of your own before posting your dissenting comment and get your own facts right.

    Le Coq passed the ball to Song who hit the defence splitting pass to Theo who crossed for RVP to score. Fact!

  82. Irishgunner says:

    Nice to meet you too Brigham :)

    Watching the rugby, Chavs vs Mancs any good? Heard they are booing Ferdinand … about as clever as the asshole booing Arshavin’s name yesterday.

  83. Brigham says:

    I have never booed any Arsenal player and never will, it is counter productive in my mind. I will openly criticise them on any forum such as this one post, game, but booing your own team is totally wrong and always will be.

    As for the Chavs v Mancs game, not much going on and I am flitting between that game and the rugby. Ireland should be more points ahead IMHO.

  84. Irishgunner says:

    Tehehehehehehe

    photo/1/large

  85. Red Arse says:

    The other side of the coin from the opprobrium heaped on Arsene for buying “yet another kid” is that the same people now clamour for the Ox’s inclusion in the team, come what may — and don’t dare substitute him AW.

    The fact is that he (the Ox) is an 18 year old kid. Arsene will rightly want to pace his introductory season in the Premier League, so stand by for further immature ructions, from certain sections of Arsenal fandom, when the Gerv returns from the ANC to regain his left wing berth, and Mr Wenger continues investing his belief in Theo and keeps him in the side with the Ox back on the bench.

    We’ll see!

  86. Irishgunner says:

    Brigham – Agreed on the booing.

    As for the rugby, if Priestland could kick Wales would be well ahead, as it is, we’re having good spells.

  87. slimgingergooner says:

    Is this really 2nd v 4th!?

    Awful football on show.

  88. love your work Total !

    even with howard webb wearing the number 12 jersey this manure team is shite!!

    they did score 1st though..

    so glad im a gunner, if i was raised anything else i would have turned to synchronised swimming a long time ago..

  89. Rasp says:

    Well done dandan, if you’re going to have a snipe at me at least do it when I’m around if you’d be so kind.

    The number of times I have resisted taking cheap shots against bloggers who refuse to debate anything other than what they see as positive to the exclusion of recognising reality are too numerous to count.

    I stand by my assessment of Theo as a player who has limited talents. He is exceptional at what he does best and yesterday we were able to play to his strenghts and he gave a very good preformance. I also pointed out today that I would like to se e him perform well when things aren’t going our way so easily.

    I complimented him on a good performance today because that is what I saw. Unlike so many in the blog world, I am not waiting for the opportunity to say I told you so, I am genuinely pleased if any player I have doubts over proves me wrong. So many others just come on when events reinforce their entrenched opinions – I am not a hypocrite…… still at least you amused LB.

  90. dandan says:

    BR: i hope you don’t feel there was any rancour in my comment; I was just making the point that emotion so often triumphs over objectivity on blogs. This one is by far the most civil I know and I would not deny any one their opinion. If you felt my post was in anyway derogatory then I apologise

  91. Irishgunner says:

    ” I stand by my assessment of Theo as a player who has limited talents.” – I totally agree with this, once Theo loses his speed he’ll be of no use to anyone. There is no shame in that for him. I am of the opinion that Roberto Carlos is of the same ilk – I personally thought he was one of the most over-rated players I’ve ever come across. Often out of position but he got back for last ditch tackles because of his speed.

    People say he was the best LB the world has ever seen, that is laughable. He is a left back as Santos is a LB, just put there on the pitch. Paolo Maldini is the finest LB ever seen (by my eyes at least and I’ve watched possibly too much football).

  92. dandan says:

    Oh dear Rasp It was not meant in any way to be a snipe but it would appear I have done it wrong, Again I apologise

  93. theo will always always be a player with limited talents, he is a player who plays with his head down to the ground and plays with instinct rather than vision..

    yes he had a good game yesterday and i am very happy for our team and his individual performance, but there was many occasions in the game where his crosses were flung in with no Arsenal players in the box..in a game against tougher opposition he wont have many chances to supply the way he did..

    we did however play to his strengths however..

  94. Come on you horrible manks, don’t you want to challenge for the title?????????????????????

  95. kelsey says:

    I am not hiding about Theo. he had a good game yesterday but I need to see it more consistently, and in fact the whole team could be critised as often they look like world beaters and other times they are lack lustre.
    Theo in a central position is not for me. I reserve judgement.I have never altered from my view. That is my opinion and nothing to do with supporting the club or players.

  96. Too late, the manks are being shown up for what they are and the chavs aren’t that good either. How did we allow the manks to beat us :(

  97. kelsey says:

    I am talking about now. The long term future with the players we have looks very rosy.

  98. Irishgunner says:

    How annoying are the Mancs, the one game we have ever wanted them to win and they feck it up :roll:

  99. irish,

    Andreas Brehme was another great for that position..Maldini oozed class, but his education came from the best..players like Franco Baresi helped his teething..

    suprised you hav no mention of Dennis Irwin? ;-)

    Lizarazu was another!

  100. Rasp says:

    OK dandan let’s forget it, I hope everyting is well with you and your wife is better now.

  101. Evonne says:

    Peaches – I just got in, cannot believe the result, fecking hell, Club in crisis :)

  102. slimgingergooner says:

    I will say it again, is this really 2nd v 4th!?

    The defending from United is woeful. How the bloody hell are they title challengers?

    Nevermind Spuds dropping off, it could be Man U on the way down the table.

  103. Evonne says:

    Irish @5:14 – so fecking right :)

  104. Evonne says:

    good penalty shot, come on you dirty mancs

  105. Hi kelsey – Theo was pretty consistent when he used to come off the bench. Defences were tired and he usually had more space. Seeing Hernandez on the bench for united makes me realise that we don’t use our squad like that do we?

  106. kelsey says:

    just for dandan :)

    No spikka da English

    A bus stops and two Italian men get on. They sit down and engage in an animated conversation.

    The woman sitting next to them ignores them at first, but her attention is galvanized as one man says:

    ‘Emma come first.

    Den I come.

    Den two asses come together.

    I come once-a-more!

    Two asses, they come together again.

    I come again and pee twice.

    Then I come one lasta time.’

    Outraged, the woman turns to them and snarls: “You foul-mouthed, sex obsessed pig! In this country, we don’t speak aloud in public places about our sex lives!”

    The Italian replies: “Hey, coola down lady. Whooza talkin’ about sex? I’m a justa tellin’ my frienda how to spell ‘Mississippi’.”

  107. Big Raddy says:

    Peaches. Can you recall the first half v MU we were outclassed, yet we all know they are ordinary.

    Good second half even if it isn’t going as we would hope

    DD. you are a Gentleman.

  108. Red Arse says:

    Dandan has apologised for his comment which inadvertently upset other AA bloggers, and we should take that at face value.

    I must say I thought he was referring to bloggers on other sites, and frankly some of them deserve castigating.

    For what it’s worth Rasper I saw nothing wrong with anything you said, or anything anyone else said on AA.

    Every one has bad days at the office, including footballers, and to say x or y was better or worse than previously is normal surely? Where’s the problem. :-)

  109. Irishgunner says:

    RuP – Yes, Maldini had great players around him but Baresi didn’t make him such a quality player, he just had it. He came into a good Milan team in 1985 at just 16 and was an integral part of the team from them on. How the club are treating him now is disgusting.

    As for Irwin, great player was well, top top player but maybe a level below the Maldini’s.

    (Paolo Maldini is my favourite player ever just in case you think I do protest too much ha ha)

  110. Hi evonne – have you been skiing today? I have the grandson watching the footie with me ;)

  111. Big Raddy says:

    Kelsey. :-D

  112. Red Arse says:

    Kelsey,

    me lika dat one! :-)

  113. Rasp says:

    Irish,

    Your man Rosexy put in a great performance yesterday. He’s been in good form for a few games now and would be in my starting eleven for most games as long as it continues.

  114. Big Raddy says:

    Robbin. Maldini is Irish’s specialist subject !

  115. Another penalty for the manks – Webb must have got an envelope at half time

  116. Evonne says:

    Peaches – I have, no choice, my dear friends are very strickt with me. But it was good, bit warmer today, -22 and some sun. I miss my dearest grandson, bit hugs. Where are Posh and Becks?

    Another penalty

  117. Rasp says:

    3:2 – come on you manky mancs

  118. Irish,
    how are the club treating him now?
    i thought he and his father were royalty in those parts..

  119. Gooner In Exile says:

    Webb is having a stormer!

  120. Irishgunner says:

    Rasp – He has, he puts in such a good shift. However, I don’t think he’ll ever be able to start every game for us. His injury problems keep coming back, little niggles that rule him out for odd games, but using him in rotation with Ramsey is very wise IMO. I reckon Rambo will be better for his breather.

  121. i dare predict that if manure come back to win this that AVB will be packing his bags come the end of the season..

  122. Brigham says:

    United look awful, which makes our result against them the other week evern more painful. I have said it many times and will say it again, the best way is to use width, use the wings and get at the fullbacks. It is what we did so well yesterday. I used to play right back for my town and I hated any winger running at me, it made my day a mess! ;-)

    Which now brings me onto my point, Ox runs at the full backs all the time, he commits them to tackle or dive in and he then skips around them with consumate ease. Walcott cannot do this as well as as Ox, he has pace, but he lacks the trickery, its as simple as that.

    My advice to Walcott would be to watch some Rocastle or Overmars DVD’s and learn how its done. As a winger, you need to be unpredictable, you need to make the full back worry which way you are going to go. A good full back will always have Walcott in his pocket as he is predictable most of the time. Some of you may argue that case, but I am speaking from a full backs pespective.

  123. Brigham says:

    PS – Maldini was class, sheer class.

  124. slimgingergooner says:

    UNITED! UNITED!

  125. Irishgunner says:

    RuP – He wants to get involved with coaching of some form with the club and they are just shutting the door in his face. He has said that he wasn’t ready to coach before, but feels ready to give it a go now. He doesn’t want to manage the feckin first team, but at underage or a defensive coach but Milan aren’t offering him anything. Maybe it’ll work out because it’d be sad to see him go anywhere else, given that his sons are coming through the Milan ranks now.

    Webb is unreal for Mancs today, one of his best performances yet.

  126. Rasp says:

    Hi Brigham, nice to see you yesterday.

    I am witness to the fact that you pointed out before the game that Theo needed more composure and with his pace should try to take the ball round the keeper more often when through on goal but that you thought the Ox did have that in his locker – you even phoned me at half time to gloat :lol:

    I would say that Theo was very unselfish yesterday and I am impressed the way that RvP always acknowledges the player who give the assist.

  127. Irishgunner says:

    BR – Yup ha ha

    Brigham – Pure professional.

    I’m getting a Maldini tattoo on my left leg (a number 3 with Paolo Maldini and Captain Forever written in Italian) …. imagine if he had played for Arsenal :/

  128. Brigham says:

    Rasp – respect mate and very true and Theo did well yesterday, no gripes from me on that score, vbut he just does not do it enough.

    @Irish – are you sure you have enough room on your leg for such a tattoo?

  129. irish,

    Crazy not to take him on as a defensive coach! Italian football is just so full of politics..

    who knows, they might change their minds after Robbin knocks milan out of the park ;-)

  130. Brigham – interesting points from a full-backs point of view. Occassionally Theo shows us he has a trick and we all gasp and cheer his name. He usually has time to push the ball one way or another and then burst forward when hes running at a defender but seldom does it :(

    I cant believe the manks have had 2 penalties ;)

  131. Irishgunner says:

    Brigham – It’ll be small, a number 3 with writing over it, no tattoos on my leg so plenty room :)

  132. i wonder where that tattoo would have been going had he played for the Arsenal? ..haha

  133. slimgingergooner says:

    Might need some Fergie time!

  134. Rasp says:

    yeeeaaaa …. 3:3

  135. 3-3 don’t you just love being a mank yuuuuuuk

  136. Brigham says:

    3-3 hahahahahaha

  137. Rasp – what are you like :oops:

  138. slimgingergooner says:

    Or not! :)

  139. Irishgunner says:

    :lol: Poor AVB will be out of a job soon

  140. in the famous words of Donald Trump “AVB……YOUR FIRED!!”

  141. Evonne says:

    Disgusting chavs are turning their backs on their own team, scum

  142. Irishgunner says:

    RuP – :lol: Maldini also happens to be one of my “I love his facial structure” men … if he played for Arsenal my heart would have blown up with the love by now.

  143. Rasp says:

    Peaches, if you think its ban me supporting the mancs, how will you feel when I’m a spud supporter tomorrow :roll:

  144. Red Arse says:

    Everyone has been impressed with the way Tomas Rosicky has played this season.

    He had a truly appalling time with injuries for two years but never gave up.

    I am keeping my fingers crossed that the same might happen for Diaby, unpopular tho that might be. Diaby is fantastically gifted and I want to see Arsenal get the benefit of all that skill. :-)

  145. Irishgunner says:

    Manks and Chavs are so vile … all round vileness

  146. fook that was a great team, i loved Z.Boban!

    i have a similar facial structure… ;-) hehe

  147. Oh no, tomorrow I’ve got to be a spud double yuuuuuuuuuuuuuuk

  148. Evonne says:

    Some of us were crying we didn’t get Mata. We got the Ox instead :)

  149. de gay is the most over priced over rated keeper in the epl n prob manure history

  150. Sorry Rasp I just saw you said the same as me :oops:

    Is a draw okayish????

  151. draw would be good.. we can catch them both!!

  152. Irishgunner says:

    RuP – Loved watching that Milan team, used to support them before I became a Gooner, have no interest in them at all since Maldini retired. Have no qualms in smashing them in the Champions League.

  153. Evonne says:

    Peaches – NO, i am going to draw a line somewhere. There is no way i am supporting Spurs, no way, whatever

  154. Irishgunner says:

    @5:53pm by rUp

    My thoughts exactly – a draw and we catch them both.

  155. Red Arse says:

    I was trying to distract some renegade AAers Peaches!

    I failed – and so I will join them tomorrow night, but I will only give the Spuds a little cheer – if they beat the ‘Pool. :-)

  156. It’s allowed evonne, it’s only for 90 minutes – no shirt wearing or scarf waving or loving any of their players. Although I have to admit that if they both drop points it’ll be fine with me :)

  157. 3-0 up at home..somebody remind me how much that team is worth?

    Torres keeps a clean sheet again! poor guy will rot in that hole called stamford bridge..

  158. RA – I saw what you were doing …… well done. I’m glad your sky came back on :)

  159. Hmmmmmmm 3 nil and they messed that up, the spuds are gonna enjoy that one :)

  160. slimgingergooner says:

    I’m torn.

    On one hand I want a Spurs win to knock Liverpool further back, and because the Spuds might be out of reach already.

    On the other I think a Liverpool win will drag Spuds into the battle and mean we have 2 spaces to go for rather than just 1.

    Then again, a draw means both Liverpool and Spuds would have dropped points and it keeps them both at arms length.

    Decisions, decisions. Maybe I will just watch as a neutral and see what the future has in store for us!

  161. Big Raddy says:

    No,No. Impossible to support the Miscreants, even for one game. A draw is the best result for us.

    Tremendous game today, how could anyone leave early?

  162. No, a win for pool !!!.. i believe spuds need ONE BIG KNOCKOUT BLOW, theyre riding on confidence and are becoming too cocky for my liking!

    a loss for them now after the manUre draw and being so close to the finish line will kill em..

    not worried bout pool. They can beat the big teams and then faulter in the must wins..

    we have them in our pockets, believe me!

  163. Rasp says:

    Peaches,

    A manc win would have been better, but a spud win tomorrow is def best for us.

  164. Big Raddy says:

    Webb was once again the best MU player

  165. Pool 3- Spuds 2

    …….i was talking bout injuries :-)

    hmmmm lets see, gerrard, skrtel, and suarez, um …bale n modric!!

  166. Red Arse says:

    SupaGinge,

    I am also uncertain over what I want to happen. The Spuds beating ‘Pool helps us but also makes them very much in the EPL chase for first place.

    On the other hand I am rather fatalistic and feel que sera sera – whatever will be, will be. :-)

  167. Doris Day, what a gal

  168. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    After a terrible first half and a half time rollicking from SAF, Webbie started to pull the strings in the second half and was instrumental in his sides comeback !. FPP and a Refereeing Academy like Manu`s will get us back to where we belong !. :)

  169. Big Raddy says:

    £20+ million for David Luiz. If ever there is proof that money doesn’t guarantee quality.

    The man is a liability.

    £9m for Koscielny ……… AW can spot a player

  170. gunnern5 says:

    I see that the real Howard Webb showed up in the 2nd half, he must have got a call from an angry Scot at halftime.

  171. Refereeing Academy – very good glic ;)

    Next time we meet you’ll have to explain to me this obsession men often have with Kniphofia ;)

  172. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Oh now i see, when the great Robert Pires sticks his leg into a defender and wins a pen he is a villian like Dick Dastardly. When Utd players do it they are Peter Perfect. Rooney with hair looks like Big Grusome and dives like jacques Cousteou yet he is a hero who must always be man of the match despite his ugliness. Didnt want Chelsea to win but this Utd bias is bloody disgraceful

  173. Big Raddy says:

    Doris Day ?

  174. Red Arse says:

    Peaches,

    Not all men — I googled knipofia as I had never heard of it, when Glic brought it up.
    “Noun, 1. genus Kniphofia – genus of showy clump-forming African herbs with grasslike leaves; sometimes placed in family Aloeaceae. liliid monocot genus.”

    I think Glic has lost his marbles – at least Terrynutkins’ telescope has homo erotic phallic significance! :-)

    On the other hand – you must know some strange men too. :-)

  175. kelsey says:

    Would a Chelsea team winning 3-0 at home have lost that lead two seasons ago. They are the club in decline and Torres what can one say.

  176. i grew up with my mother listening to doris day…she sang que sera sera, or the cover at least..

  177. MickyDidIt89 says:

    rURp,
    Torres keeps a clean sheet :-)

  178. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Irish,
    For goodness sake Girl, leave some room on your body for some, I dunno, skin maybe!

  179. Red Arse says:

    Raddy,

    You seem just as puzzled as me, even if for different reasons. :-)

    Doris Day is a great 90 year old gal. But each to their own. :roll:

  180. kelsey says:

    Doris Mary Ann Von Kappelhoff , BR” whatever will be will be.”

  181. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    peaches, I knew you would probably be the only one to get that ! :)
    I once went on a Tree Identification Course and was well peed off when I spent all my spare time revising the Latin names for Tree`s, then the Tutor on the day started using the common names. Serves me right for trying to be too clever !. :)

  182. Rubbish course then glic – I only use latin names – I’m a fully qualified plant snob ;)

  183. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    I tell you what, that Doris Day bird was well fit.

  184. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    I should have added Redders, he would get the Red Hot Poker bit !. :)

  185. Red Arse says:

    Sorry, Robin, :-)

    When I said “que sera, sera” I had no idea that Doris day was connected to the song — actually I am not sure I have ever heard it sung – except on the terraces! :-)

  186. Irishgunner says:

    TMHP – Kenny Cunningham and Ronnie Whelan called out Adam Johnson last night for winning a penalty for Citeh against Fulham by him kicking the defender. They said he should have been sent off for cheating (2 dives).

    MIDI – I’ve only got 2 medium size tattoos :) …so far. Can’t get any that I can’t cover though cos I want to work in a library.

  187. MickyDidIt89 says:

    To the Miserable Gits on here,
    As the biggest of Oxo bigger-uppers on here, I say lighten up, enjoy the moment and get childlike carried away. For myself, I did the usual nine hour trip earlier in the season for the sole reason of seeing The Ox play against Shrewsbury, and I will not dampen my expectations.

  188. kelsey says:

    TMHT, have you seen how many husbands she has had, most died and some she divorced. She must be some sort of rattle snake.

  189. RA – the common name is ‘Red Hot Poker’, slightly phallic in appearance. Nothing beats a Papaver orientalis in bud for me though :oops:

  190. Red Arse says:

    Glic,

    Now you are talking — Terry’s eyes, especially the one glued to his telescope, are no doubt lit up by the mention of red hot poker (Peaches will tell us the Latin name and genus! :-)

  191. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    peaches,
    I remember there was a Million Pound question on Who wants to be a Millionaire, It was something like, ” what would you do with a Quercus Rubra ?”. It`s only easy if you know the answer ! :)

  192. Red Arse says:

    Kelsey,

    It is well known they all died in ecstasy! She asked if you were free next Sunday – and make sure all your affairs are in order first! :-)

  193. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    I know Irish, this utd bias is a joke.

    A Rattle Snake Kelsey? sounds good to me. hahaha. Have you fully recovered from your snake bite? I trod on a scorpion as a kid on holiday in Crete, realy painful…the scorpion died.

  194. Big Raddy says:

    Careful Kelsey. Doris is one of my faves. Whip crack away….

  195. more like the black widow spider

  196. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Redders :lol:
    I and peaches already have, Kniphofia, and It`s destined for your RedArse ! :lol:

  197. MickyDidIt89 says:

    RA,
    I do think your dish saga earlier was funny. Some great images came to mind.
    All,
    Only caught second half of Chavs game. Great stuff. Still can’t really make up my mind about tomorrow. In some ways, we should’nt worry about Pool as to get 4th we need to catch Chavs anyway, so the optimist in me says lets get after them and Spuds as well. There are still plenty of games and points to go. In other words, plenty of chances for Spuds to lose three more than us.

  198. Red Arse says:

    Thanx for the info Peaches – but would it not be women who would swoon at a red hot poker? Or alternatively don’t go to the Tavern before a footie game with Terry on a full moon night.

    Glic, you are wriggling. Quercus Rubra? I have no idea of plant names but my latin tells me — Quercus = Oak, rubra = red.

    Am I on the trail, cowboy? :-)

  199. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Redders, hahahahaha, a red hot poker is enough to make any ones eyes water.

  200. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Spuds lose tomorrow, then we beat them, and the gap is six with what will be about 12 other games to play.

  201. pool will probably lose!!

    they dont think the spuds are a big enough team :-)

  202. Aha now I know why David Beckham has been splashed all over my television today in his underpants ….. it’s all for the Superbowl, as if there won’t be enough testosterone on show ;)

  203. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Absolutely , we will make a green fingered man you yet ! :)
    Terry, already has green fingers, but then again he has been to some dodgy niteclubs in Essex ! :)

  204. dandan says:

    BR thats what they took Torres home on today The Deadwood Stage. :-)

  205. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    I dont know what It says about me, but a Knipholia was the first plant I ever bought ! :)

  206. Irishgunner says:

    If the Superbowl was about “real men” as the Americans like to think it is, then why do they wear all the protection? Its rugby for wussies

  207. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Micky,
    I went to the Elephants Nest before on a reccy, found the car park for Tavy Cleave and will do it in the summer, I could take the MiL and let her wander onto the Army firing range ! :evil:

  208. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Irish,
    I thought the same thing, but didn`t want to upset the 19 stone Redders with Knipholia in hand ! :)

  209. Irishgunner says:

    GLIC – :lol:

  210. MickyDidIt89 says:

    GliC,
    They do the only pub sunday lunch I’ll eat. Superb.
    You need this site http://www.dartmoor-ranges.co.uk/military_use
    Firing times are on the link bottom left.

  211. ive never been drawn to American Football but ive always seemed to enjoy movies based on the sport..maybe its the stop/start that gets to me

  212. Red Arse says:

    Micky,

    What I did not add to my satellite dish saga was that, altho’ I did hit the embedded snow on the dish, it took me several goes and standing in the garden I launched maybe 15 snowball rockets, 12 of which flew over the roof.

    10 minutes later a neighbour I do not know rang the doorbell and said, in that beautiful understated British way;

    Neighbour: “I am awfully sorry to bother you, and I am certainly not one to complain, but unfortunately, your son hit my wife twice on the head with snowballs as she walked past your property”.

    Me: “I am real sorry to hear that – is she OK?”

    Neighbour: “Yes, she is fine now, but it came as a shock because she did not see anyone. When the first snowball hit her on the head, she turned around and another one landed and knocked her woolly hat off. It badly frightened her.”

    Me: “What made her think it was my son?”

    Neighbour: “Well he must have been in hiding, but she heard a loud rather childish scream of delight coming from near your house.”

    [I do not have a son, and the rather harsh description of 'childish screams of delight' must have been me].

    Me: “I will reprimand him immediately, the young devil, and take my belt to him!”

    Neighbour: “Oh no, please do not feel you need to do that, but perhaps you could ask him to be more careful in the future.”

    Me: “OK, if that’s what you want, but I will ensure he knows that any repetion will incur the most serious penalties.”

    Neighbour: “That is very satisfactory. Thank you. Goodbye”.

    ‘Childish shrieks of delight’ — I hit the bloody satellite dish 3 times and also unbeknownst to me another 2 right on the head of a neighbour as well. what’s not to shriek about?? :-)

    British reserve is wonderful – I still don’t know his name. Son? What son – does he know something I don’t? :-)

  213. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Micky,
    For some reason that link is not coming up for me, but I`m sure I will find something in Okehampton about It, thanks anyway !

  214. RockyLives says:

    NO SUPPORTING THE SPUDS

    ‘Pool to win, then we catch ‘em both :D

  215. MickyDidIt89 says:

    RA,
    Ha Ha :-)

  216. kelsey says:

    TMHT
    ,actually just about it took two visits to the nurse and was rather uncomfortable for two weeks.Thanks for asking.

    Great programme on about th early female british pop singers. first and foremost dusty springfield and what a voice.

    peaches re Superbowl they are charging 22 million £ sterling for a 30 second advert and expect 160 million to watch it in The stats.

    great game i think, takes about 40 minutes with 3 and a half hours of adverts :)

  217. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Redders :lol:
    Did you do It Quarter back style, hut hut hut, seems like you picked out your wide receiver twice in the “end zone”. :)

  218. LB says:

    I still think Dandan’s comment is hilarious, I took it to mean, or meant to point out, how people seem suicidal after one game, almost chocking on their anger to find fall guys and then after the next they are back thinking that Arsene Wenger is the best thing since sliced bread. For me Dandan is the consistent, certainly more consistent than me and for that he has my utmost respect.

    As for my own comment on Song, I could go back and find a whole host of anti Song comments from numerous people which is fair enough, my argument, and I am not looking for anyone to agree with me, is that he played to the same standard against Bolton as he did against Blackburn.

    Just because we do not score does not make it the fault of Alex Song. But I have to say the equation of: if we don’t score against Bolton equals Song is only thinking about a move away from Arsenal at the end of the season as being just a bit far fetched……………to put it very, very mildly.

  219. kelsey says:

    RA,
    nice one. glad you know your neighbours so well.

  220. glic @ 7.04 I rest my case ………..

    Redders – if any men are ever involved in choosing plants they always say ‘I like those’ when shown a group of plants that include Kniphofia!!!!!!

  221. Big Raddy says:

    3 out of 12 ? Hardly quarterback standard RA.

    Today I visited a friend in hospital who was in a ward for people with hearing difficulties. Some old bag asked me to speak less loudly!

  222. Red Arse says:

    Kelsey,

    At least i recognized him!!

    You on for your date with Doris ‘knock em dead’ Day, next Sunday? :-)

  223. Big Raddy says:

    LB? We disagree apart from your final para. And DD’s consistency :-)

  224. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Redders, hahaha. My cousin, who was always in trouble, would feel the wrath of his old mans belt. I remember when i was about 13 and had a sleepover at his house, his dad, who was a fat git chased him around the house with the belt. Terrifying sight seeing a fully grown man, belt in hand, face contorted with rage and chasing a kid around with trousers down his ankles. hahaha.

  225. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Raddy,
    Always mime to irritating deaf old people. Its really fun!

  226. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Yes peaches, It all makes sense now…. :)

    Redders,
    It gives a new meaning to the “Hail Mary” pass, “Oi Mary look out……..too late ” !

  227. Red Arse says:

    Got to go and have a cold shower – Peaches talking dirty — phew!! i lurve it! :oops:

    Then out for a biiiiig steak — then back for the WORLDS!!! Yaaay! :-) Come on you Jint Giants!!!!!! :-)

    Nite, nite guys

  228. Big Raddy says:

    Dusty in Memphis is a must have album.

    Micky. Brilliant, must try next visit.

  229. Big Raddy says:

    RA. Enjoy.

  230. Red Arse says:

    You are a rascal, Glic! :-)

    Bye.

  231. LB says:

    Sharkey

    Where are you?

    Do you think Song played any better or worse against Bolton and Blackburn?

  232. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Just checked out that Kniphofia plant and know what Peaches and Cornwall mean. Gives me goosebumps just looking at it, very exciting. Soon my garden will be swarming in the little blighters.

  233. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    I know I can trust you lot for sound advice and empathy. The other day I took Mrs glic to the Hospital for a check up and scan. It all came back ok, and is probably an hormonial thing. I asked her what happened ?, she said the nurse and two young female Doctors had her put her legs up wide open and then put a 12 inch probe up her, this is when I started to get a Semi !, Is there something wrong with me or was It a normal man thing reaction ?.

  234. kelsey says:

    COSTA DEL SOL LAWN BOWLS LEAGUE

    TIGERS’ LEAGUE FIXTURES : W/E 3 FEBRUARY, 2012

    as it’s Superbowl and that is my club, why not.

    3 wins in the week push Superbowl to “top-spot” for the first time :-

    * Emphatic HOME win against Miraflores and two tough AWAY victories *

    * “Lucky 12” for La Posada as they “break their duck” at the 12th attempt *

    * Falcons close the gap at the top – the game in hand could be decisive *

    * Mijas lose “top-spot” following heavy defeat to the Admirals *

  235. kelsey says:

    GLIC,

    I think they were looking for your wisdom teeth.

  236. chas says:

    Great report, TA.

    Bouncer at a tea-party. Haha
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/27453474@N02/6804652863/in/photostream/lightbox/

    The Emirates still glowing this morning after yesterday’s performance..
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/27453474@N02/6821559593/in/photostream/lightbox/

  237. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Cornwall, hahahahahahahahahaha, I can confirm without fear of contradiction that is perfectly normal….well, in my view anyway hahahahaha.

  238. Rasp says:

    Just a general comment if I may in response to what has gone on earlier. The last thing we want is to have a site that is weighed down with rules – it would only restrict open debate.

    So what I am expressing is just my opinion as a fellow blogger. In general terms, it is underhand to go back and reproduce a comment by a someone in the context of one debate from the past and reproduce in a different discussion where it is out of context, it is usually intended to make the target look foolish.

    Some people with strong views afford themselves the luxury of dipping in and out when the scenario suits them – others try to keep things going whatever the circumstances.

  239. SharkeySure says:

    Very Frank and candid report Total. ;-)

    Love the depth of your reports. Rather you than me tryng to call a MoM out of those three..and you’re prob right to share it.

    How nice was it to look at acock that said 73mins…and to feel totally composed and calm for a change.

    More of the same please

  240. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Thanks Terry, I knew I could count on my mucker, absolutely true though, I`m ashamed ( or should I be ?) to admit . :oops:

  241. LB says:

    And may I say you do a fine job of keeping things going Rasp, I on the other hand shall continue to dip in and out when the scenario suits me or could that also be: stick the beliefs I hold dear.

  242. kelsey says:

    “How nice was it to look at acock that said 73mins…and to feel totally composed and calm for a change.”

    WOW !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  243. Irishgunner says:

    :lol: Best typo ever there

    take the L out of clock and you’re looking at a cock

  244. LB says:

    And Sharkey?

    Is it deemed that Alex played better because we won yesterday or do you think he played he played to his usual magnificent high standard in both Bolton and Blackburn games? Biased moi?

  245. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Sharkey,
    Have you been around Terry`s gaff ? :lol:

  246. Rasp says:

    I’m happy with that LB, obviously everyone is free and welcome to demonstrate their support as they see fit. Dirty tricks and sniping is not nice among friends though.

  247. LB says:

    Alex Song: the black Franz Beckenbauer

    I have been dying to get that in a match report, trouble is, I suppose, I don’t do enough of them.

  248. SharkeySure says:

    I’m here LB.

    Song was better yesterday, seemed more in control, and more authoritative.

    HOWEVER….(caps for drama – how do I get scary music??)

    I believe Song is better when the team plays better, and when the movement in front of him is not so good, he tries to hold onto it. I don’t think he has been playing badly per se… but he did seem to have lost his edge a little.

    Whenever he played with Cesc, he zipped the ball about for fun, playing the cutest of passes from all sorts of angles. Those two, at times, were brilliant together.

    Even on his ‘average’ days he is so far ahead of so many who play a similar position that its almost scary. No other team’s CM’s spend so much time on the ball…its about more than just winning it back.

    Look at Rooney today…running wild and free. Song would never allow that, he’d win the ball off him or at least impede him. Then some will cry ‘silly foul’ as if the alternative of letting him run away is the better option.

    Look at old Claude ’15-20 fouls per game’ Ukelele…no one ever cried ‘silly foul’ at him Mak

  249. SharkeySure says:

    “Alex Song the black Franz Beckenbauer’

    Yep….thats him. He has so much in his locker its untrue.

    Borusssia Dortmund at home…and so many other moments, ust this season alone…let alone any other seasons.

    I’ll catch up on the comments now…see why you were calling for the cavalry

  250. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Course you shouldnt be ashamed.Its to your credit that you can be honest and open about such matters, and i for one salute you.And its bloody funny hahahaha.

    Rasp, very interesting point about rehashing someones comments. From my personal point of view i dont care if ime quoted in a contraditory way, we all contradict ourselves at times. as long its not done in an overtly personal way, and in the case your refering to i dont think it was, for me its fine.

  251. LB says:

    Sharkey

    There is nothing really up there, I just have this idea that people were scratching around for a fall guy after the Bolton game and a few settled on Song to which I thought: here we go again, same ol, same ol, I could not see the difference between his performance against Bolton or Blackburn — both perfectly fine.

    The person who got it spot on for me the day after the Bolton game was Wonderman, I thought his views were excellent and when challenged he said: “I cannot see past the attack”, meaning that to try and blame anyone else other than the attack was to miss the point — I reckon he knows his stuff that Wonderman.

  252. Rasp says:

    It is far more ‘constructive’ to have high expectations of any player than low expectations.

    This is demonstrated perfectly when you compare Theo to Song.

    They both receive criticism but for the opposite reasons; Theo because he gives people exactly what they expect sometimes (not a lot!) and Song because he hasn’t recently lived up to his own high standards – IMO :lol:

  253. SharkeySure says:

    Lol …not even Coq wirth a ‘q’.

    Kelsey I know you have editing powers…why the hell aren’t you using them !!!

  254. RockyLives says:

    LB, Sharkey
    I thought Song’s attacking game against Blackburn was better than against Bolton.
    But his defensive game was not really put to the test so much in yesterday’s game.

    Against Bolton I thought he was guilty of losing concentration a few times and, therefore, losing the ball in potentially dangerous positions for us.

    He has not been at his best recently (more the black Franz Kafka – playing a bit tortuously – than Franz Beckenbauer).

    Of course this could be for any number of reasons about which we can only speculate (wants to leave in the summer; lack of fullbacks makes his defensive role much harder; team as a whole struggling making it harder for him; something going on in his personal life; just a routine dip in form, etc etc).
    At his best he is immense, no argument about that.

    I suppose if we criticise any player’s performance after a disappointing result we can be accused of making him a fall-guy (incidentally, I thought Theo copped a lot more “fall guy” flak than Song after Bolton). But I don’t see any harm in debating players’ performances, good and bad, just as we have all done in the pub after a game for decades.

  255. SharkeySure says:

    Wonderman is a very close friend of mine, and yeah he really knows his stuff…about so many things. Its a shame he hasn’t more time to spend on here with us…(says me, who’s mostly awol of late).

    We take one or two early chances against Bolton, Fulham, (Swansea as well?) then they we deflate the opposition a bit and give ourselves a much better chance.

    The longer teams stay in the game against us, the less they fear us, and the more confident they become.

  256. SharkeySure says:

    Franz Kafka !!! Lol

  257. SharkeySure says:

    Red 7.24. Oh dear….

    Hilarious

    “I am awfully sorry to bother you, and I am certainly not one to complain”

  258. Irishgunner says:

    We had only 58% possession yesterday?? I thought it looked more 70% – 30%

    They hardly had the ball.

  259. Who made the comment about looking at the ‘clock’ on 73 minutes?

    The problem with having high expectations of players is that when they don’t deliver the goods there is a feeling of disappointment.

    Surely none of us want any of our players to fail and it hurts me to think that it looks like some of us look for a scapegoat when things go badly.

    I don’t think Song has been playing as well as he can or having a positive influence on how the team is performing. That’s not to say that anything is his fault, Theo hasn’t helped either.

    Yesterday was fantastic, I was very proud that heads didn’t drop when Blackburn equalised because going on recent performances that could just have easily have happened.

  260. chas says:

    Thought I’d have a quick look at Song’s passing stats from the Bolton and Blackburn games.

    Bolton – out of 68 passes, 15 went astray. Just over 22%.
    Blackburn – out of 70 passes, 8 went astray. 11.4%

    The chalkboards in the following show a much greater effect in the final third for our Franz against Blackburn.
    You would expect both a higher success rate for passing and a greater efficacy in the final third for a midfielder in a team scoring 7 as opposed to a midfielder in a team scoring 0. :)

    http://twitpic.com/8g7kbr/full

  261. I hope they remember what inspired them to keep going yesterday because they’re going to need that in the coming games and i’m pretty certain it wasn’t the threat of bin liners on empty seats ;)

  262. Rasp says:

    No dandan, I wasn’t referring to you, that’s all forgotten believe me.

    That was all dealt with and put behind us earlier.

    You are a very important and respected member of the community on AA and I’d hate to lose you from our ranks.

  263. TotalArsenal says:

    Chas, brilliant pictures!

    Rocky@3.33 thanks for great feedback. I know about your professional background and always appreciate your feedback on my blogs. :)

    I did not consciously try to do a ‘told you so’, but I guess it shone true somehow anyway. I always try to do mainly two things when writing a match report: report on the game (technically and in its wider context) and look for positives on which to move forward. I am under no illusion that Arsenal/Arsene is facing one of its toughest tests this season, and I am fully expecting more disappointing results ahead. However, like you, I am very positive about the future of our club and believe the basics for sustained success are all in place. If I did not believe that, I would say so, as truth is an important virtue for me.

    Also agreed on not over-hyping the Ox. But what he has been showing us recently was special by any standards, and very promising in terms of potential/ his career to come.

  264. dandan says:

    Rasp I am pleased to take you at your word. I enjoy our community and the rapport among us. Accordingly I have removed that last post and look forward to continuing to share your company

  265. SharkeySure says:

    TA – “(hoping to find a tiny, little hill in this pancake county).”

    Frankly, I find that ridiculous coming from a Dutchman. Surely the flatness of the lands is why you’ve settled in Norfolk ??

  266. Rasp says:

    You’re a star dandan :P

  267. SharkeySure says:

    I lover the ‘Franz’ moniker…can we take it as a given..?? Now we just need a weekly graphic allowing us to vote for ‘Kafka’ or ‘Beckenbauer’..

  268. Rasp says:

    Or even ‘Klammer’ Sharkey for when he goes on a ‘mazey run’?

  269. RockyLives says:

    Rasp… and slips over :)

  270. RockyLives says:

    Evening TA
    I like your “reasoned positivism”. It’s what I strive for myself, although I have my “unreasoning negativism” moments too.

    After saying we shouldn’t hype Oxo, I can’t avoid pointing out that he and Wilshere could form the basis for England’s most exciting team for a generation.

  271. SharkeySure says:

    “As a winger, you need to be unpredictable, you need to make the full back worry which way you are going to go”

    Good point Brigham (5.30)…you can almost expand it to every outfield player. 90%* of good football is about disguising your intentions.

    Fabregas was the master at that.

    * Any large percentage would suffice really

  272. SharkeySure says:

    GLIC 7.59. Once I’ve finished pissing myself laughing…I’ll ask Rasp or Peaches to yellow card you for lowering the tone!

  273. SharkeySure says:

    Which dirty ratbag has edited my comment and put my rather mild faux pas in bold..??

    Thats not quite the edit I was hoping for…

  274. SharkeySure says:

    Agreed Rasp…it was definitely Klammer against Bor Dtmnd that night.

    Anyways offski…before someone else takes an ‘L’ out of another of my comments just to make me seem human ;-)

    Night all…

  275. Sharkey was it your comment about the ‘clock’? What time was it and I’ll go back and put it right …………………

  276. TotalArsenal says:

    Evening Rocky,

    If and when Arsenal lose a game, we all have different ways of dealing with the negative feelings it creates in us. I fully understood your post of a few days ago when you expressed your feeling of hopelessness re a few players at the moment, and i agreed with most of it.

    You are most definitely a ‘reasoned positivist’ – how else could you have stated a few days ago that we will go on an unbeaten run till the end of the season?! :D

  277. TotalArsenal says:

    Sharkey :)

    Re: pancake county. You can take a Dutchman out of Holland, and you can definitely take Holland out of this Dutchman! I love mountains, space, and very few people around me (most of the times) – the absolute opposite of Holland. Norfolk is just an interim solution!

  278. goonermichael says:

    did the mancs deserve the pens?

  279. TotalArsenal says:

    NO GM, maybe the first one but also that was a soft one. In both cases Manc players were looking for it and they got it too easily from Webb. A disgrace, but we cannot complain!

  280. Great game !!! Refreshing after a long time..
    Only one irritating thing: RVP should hav been rested wen we wer 5 goals up…and Park shud hav been given a run..poor guy :( Nyways,
    Wilshere playing with the Ox next season is gonna be mouthwatering :D COYG \m/

  281. TotalArsenal says:

    All agreed there Sagar, but that is Wenger for you – he does not always do what we, the ‘ordinary’ fans, would do. Maybe he is showing the rest of us that he, for one, is not scared of an RvP injury?!

  282. goonermichael says:

    Howard webb should go to prison

  283. goonermichael says:

    Actually hell would be better

  284. gooner lost in cornwall says:

    Hell would be home for him, he is a Red Devil ! :evil:

  285. goonermichael says:

    Just read a nice piece about corruption in the premiere league. I’m convinced it’s bent. Why hasn’t atkinson reffed the mancs since ferguscum slated him?

  286. goonermichael says:

    I’d like to stick a knife in his eye. seriously I’d enjoy it . corruption is disgusting

  287. goonermichael says:

    Isn’t it funny how everyone is intersted in american “football” when it’s superbowl.

  288. LB says:

    Rocky

    I think I have it now: Song was thinking about a move at the end of the season during the Bolton game but not during the Blackburn game.

  289. Gooner in Exile says:

    Watched the full 90 on Football First.

    Arteta simply class.

    Kozzer simply class and when we have our full backs back should be the first name on the team sheet at CB.

    RvP great movement.

    Coq & Ox great potential and great performances. What I like about both of them is their ability to play with their heads up.

    As for the Song debate I did not see the Bolton game so can’t compare, but I think he played better today than he did against Fulham, Swansea, Villa and United. Everyone is entitled to be off form but with Arteta out we couldn’t afford for Song to be off his game.

    Theo has definitely developed a bit of arrogance, LB commented earlier about him sometimes comes across as senior player I know best, there was a point in the second half where he chose the wrong option (I think blasted an early cross when if he had looked up would have seen players arriving on edge) and you could see him half smile and say “we’ve got a corner” don’t know who was complaining to him (maybe Arteta).

    Bit of constructive criticism for Szczesny too, he should have saved it, and the reason he didn’t was being too close to his goal line, if he was forward a yard his deflection would have moved that ball over, as it was he connected when on goal line so was never going to tip it over. Again it’s an experience thing. More than any other position on the pitch your decision making gets better as you get older, he will make minor mistakes but we will have to suffer them as fans and understand that they will happen.

    Biggest difference for me was simply finishing and choosing right options in the box.

  290. RockyLives says:

    LB
    Haha
    I don’t have any idea whether he’s thinking about a move, but I do know his form has been a bit off lately.
    And when I say lately, I don’t just mean Bolton.

  291. RockyLives says:

    GiE
    No mention of BFG?
    I thought he was excellent again. A very good footballer – one of the best I’ve seen at CB.

  292. Kelsey @ 8.12pm,

    I didn’t know you had that in you..You must be hanging out with Terry and his merry mates :-}

  293. Gooner in Exile says:

    Rocky you’re right he should have been in there. The commentator on Football First probably doesn’t watch enough of him as he was saying TV and Koz will be our first choice CBs. I actually wonder whether BFG is first name down.

    There will be a lot of fans who share the commentators view as BFGs style is a bit too effortless, he is a fantastic reader of the game defensively, and the thing I liked most about him is his calm passing ability with either foot.

    Actually I noticed something else yesterday, all of our players could control the ball with left or right foot, and all playing yesterday made their first touch so their second could be a pass. I then started watching Blackburn players receive and play the ball and they mainly used one foot.

  294. kelsey says:

    Morning robbin.

    A little misunderstanding here.
    Sharkey wrote a comment at 8.09p.m. but unfortunately he left out a letter in the word clock.
    I found it amusing and highlighted it and reproduced it at 8.12p.m. saying WOW!!!.

  295. Evonne says:

    Morning GiE – are you saying that this is a new trait in our players, ie using both feet or that you only noticed it recently?

  296. Evonne says:

    Hi Kelsey – are you in the only snowless country in Europe ?

  297. kelsey says:

    Morning Evonne.

    Global warning has taken over even here in Spain. On Saturday we had the lowest day time temperature for 35 years at 2 degrees and a terrific wind coming from the north pole which uprooted several trees and caused havoc. The Spanish build paper thin walls and marble floors so it was actually colder inside the house than outside.
    Yesterday was better and today we should be back to about 18 degrees.

    Gie I don’t know exactly but i would wager that RVP has scored at least 40% of his goals this past year with his right foot.

  298. Gooner in Exile says:

    Morning Evonne, I don’t think I pay that much attention to it normally, and rarely do I sit and watch the full 90 with no emotion (I rarely watch the full game with knowledge of the result so I just paid more attention). What I think surprised me was that every player was comfortable (even those like TV and Theo who seem predominantly one footed). It’s also a necessary skill for our short passing game to work its why JD and Gibbs can often appear to be slow in possession as they tend to put themselves in trouble with their first touch. When BFG receives the ball he can put it on his right or left foot depending on where he needs it to be to make the pass and to give himself time.

    I was also impressed at 6-1 that Arteta was pushing and pressing the ball in Blackburns half which led to us getting the ball back further up the pitch. We started to do this in the Villa game too and it is good to see this trait returning to the team.

  299. Evonne says:

    Kelsey – gosh, that sounds bad! At least here in Poland the country is prepared for the arctic conditions and everything runs smoothly. Even footy games are not cancelled.

    Trust me to miss the best game of the season :( That’s why i hate going on holidays

  300. Evonne says:

    GiE – thank you for the explanation, i will keep an eye from now on :)

  301. Gooner in Exile says:

    You maybe right Kelsey, that Chocolate leg is getting better, it used to be only larraped with his right foot but his goal scoring confidence is so high he can score goals like his hatrick finish without thinking.

  302. Gooner in Exile says:

    My sister in law has emigrated to Oz for “better quality of life” their summer has been pretty much rain rain rain so far, I think it’s the wettest summer they have had in Sydney for quite sometime.

  303. kelsey says:

    Re Szczesny, GIE i agree with you. he is an undoubted talent but is still learning and it shows in several games. I don’t think any of our other keepers can hold a candle to him, but I would have liked to see a more experienced keeper brought in in the Summer to mentor him for a season r two.. He can be quite reckless,showboats a bit, and his distribution could be better, but he is extremely confident regardless if he is at fault and concedes. In his defence he has had numerous combinations of defenders in front of him and a true understanding takes time.

  304. chas says:

    Is this ball in a correct place for a corner to be taken?
    http://twitpic.com/8gexf6/full

  305. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Chas,
    Bet that corner went long!

  306. chas says:

    Is it legal though, Micky?

  307. kelsey i realise, big night out on the piss..
    how embarrasement :-)
    must remember to not post when im in that state of affairs, i honestly believed it was your comment at first and decided to acknowledge it straight away without following the script (what a dumb-arse! he says :-)..
    great night though, no regrets,
    next time ill just pass out

  308. Rasp says:

    Morning all…….

    ….. New post ……..

  309. Tiendas BBPearl Maracaibo, Venezuela…

    [...]Match report – The fantastic story of Theo, The Ox and the Fox in the Box « Arsenal Arsenal[...]…

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