The key to enjoying Arsenal’s football is lowering our high expectations

Every day you may make progress. Every step may be fruitful. Yet there will stretch out before you an ever-lengthening, ever-ascending, ever improving path. You know you will never get to the end of the journey. But this, so far from discouraging, only adds to the joy and glory of the climb.” Sir Winston Churchill.

High expectations are a curse and ruining our enjoyment of supporting Arsenal.I have, in recent years, noticed a lot of dissatisfaction, in myself, as well as in many other Gooners, over the lack of silverware won by our beloved Arsenal. We have been so frustrated about not winning anything for seven years and counting now, that we run the risk of losing the joy of watching and supporting our team in the process.We are tense, we are grumpy, we are dissatisfied – we are a pain in the arse to ourselves, our friends and our partners. Our incredibly high expectations, based on an overrated belief in our abilities, are mainly to blame for this.

Our high expectations are a cocktail of being one of the biggest teams in England; our historical successes, but even more importantly, our recent successes; the completion of a brand new, state of the art new stadium, and the raised expectations that come with this; and having a manager at the helm who has delivered so much for us in the past.

In the meantime, the Premier League has experienced a massive and very nasty, paradigm-jump: the sugar-daddy clubs, who operate, paradoxically, completely outside the ethical and economic laws of both socialism and capitalism. Chelsea, initially, and now joined by Manchester City, are happy to make enormous losses in order to buy titles. They tell us they have a long-term strategy, and will make profits rather than losses in the future, but let’s not be fooled: owning a football club that ‘wins’ silverware is very big ‘bling’ for those who live in bottomless abundance. They have got to do something with themselves to counter the unbearable lightness of their being – to feet their insatiable egos.

We have to live with this, at least for now. Some, including me, are keen for Arsenal to stick to its self-sustainability model, whilst others are desperate for Arsenal to compete on an equal basis with the Oilers, and as such, have pinned their hope on our own, desperate-for-recognition billionaire: Usmanov – whatever the long-term consequences of this could be for our club.

For the foreseeable future, with regards to the way the club is managed, nothing is going to change, whether we like it or not. It is a fact.

Maybe it is time for us to lower our expectations now, in order to find some peace of mind with the given situation – maybe it is time to start the season with a glass half empty attitude, with a reality-check.

This should, by the way, not be confused with a lack of ambition by the writer of today’s blog.

Recently, I read a great article in the Guardian Weekly that might give us some advice on how to deal better with our expectations, and subsequently become a lot happier: ‘Failure can be inspiring’ by Oliver Burkeman.

The bit I thought particularly interesting from the article was the view held by psychologist Carol Dweck of how we appear to look at talent and ability. Burkeman summarises Dweck’s theory as follows: “….our experiences of failure are influenced overwhelmingly by the beliefs we hold about the nature of talent and ability – and that we can, perhaps quite straightforwardly, nudge ourselves towards a better outlook. Each of us can be placed somewhere on a continuum, Dweck argues, depending on our “implicit view” – or unspoken attitude – about what talent is and where it comes from. Those with a “fixed theory” assume the ability is innate; those with an “incremental theory” believe that it evolves through challenge and hard work.”

The principle idea is that those with an “incremental” mindset are more prepared for, and more resilient against things going wrong, and are more likely to achieve sustainable success: Those with a fixed mindset believe strongly they will succeed and find failure “especially horrifying”. Burkeman puts it as follows: “The incremental mindset is the one more likely to lead to sustainable success. But the deeper point is that possessing an incremental outlook is a happier way to be, whether or not it leads to any outstanding success”.

Although the above statements are aimed at the individual, I can see a strong linkage with the way we, collectively, view our beloved Arsenal. Is it fair to say that over the last few years we, as supporters, have started to believe our club’s ability is innate, simply a given; that we are so good and so big that we simply should win silverware constantly, and that anything less means unacceptable failure? Have we perhaps, consciously or subconsciously, been overrating our ability, whilst wilfully ignoring what has been happening around us?

It is about time for us to drop this idea that we are simply entitled to success and to start again from a more humble base.

We need to accept that the challenge ahead is a daunting one; that we need to work very hard, and work towards success incrementally: step by step. We need to give ourselves time and take into account we might not win anything major in the foreseeable future. And we need to find our peace with this.

Many Gooners will be going into next season with very high expectations once again: some because they simply demand success after seven years of ‘failure’ – anything else is not good enough, others because they are glass half-full people.

But this time round, not this Gooner.

I am going to be realistic with regards to our current qualities and ability, regardless of whether we sign some more players or not, and will adjust my expectations accordingly. I will also try to refrain from my natural instinct towards unwarranted ‘glass half full’ thinking at the start or during the season, as this is deemed to lead to disappointment in the future.

I believe Arsenal still has a chance to win the PL or CL, even this year, but it is a relatively small one. I am not going to count on us winning anything major this year, but will remain hopeful. Because with Arsene at the helm, there is always hope.

I like our squad, I believe in Arsene, and through an incremental approach by all involved: some healthy humility, hard work on the training ground and on the pitch, aiming constantly to get the very best out of the players, and concentrating on just one game at a time, and of course, a lot of luck, something magic might happen next season.

But more than this, as a supporter, I will be taking every game as it comes, try as much as possible to enjoy the positives and aim to share my experiences with those of fellow Gooners as much as I can. And I cannot wait till the season starts again: I am as excited as ever!

By collectively letting go, at least for a bit, our sense of entitlement to silverware, caused by a romantic clinging on to the past and a denial of the new reality which was forced upon us recently; and instead, work our socks off in all areas related to our football, we should be able to enjoy Arsenal’s football a lot more the coming seasons.

Paradoxically, by no longer expecting to win something, we might actually still end up victoriously.

Written by TotAl.

Continuous effort – not strength or intelligence – is the key to unlocking our potential.”

Sir Winston Churchill.

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192 Responses to The key to enjoying Arsenal’s football is lowering our high expectations

  1. Nicolás says:

    excellent article.. regards from chile

  2. John in Uganda says:

    For sure we enjoyed the invicible period and we were on top of the world. so in the same spirit we should share the difficult moments

  3. Jaden says:

    I’ve made my peace a couple of years ago.We’ll just have to trust Arsene and HOPE..

  4. chas says:

    Before I read it…what on earth has happened to the font?

  5. chas says:

    Excellent, TotAl.

    When I look back, I think I did this a good few seasons back. Does anyone think that winning a poxy Mickey Mouse cup would really get the monkey off our backs? I don’t.

    We were so spoilt from 1998 to 2004 that some fans started to believe that it is Arsenal’s birthright to be that successful all of the time; that is, we have an innate, divine right to success.

    How long before one of the spoilt Arsenal fans comes on and says that you have no ambition for the club? :)

  6. TotAl says:

    Morning to all AA’ers! :)

    Nicolas, thanks and welcome. I have not seen a South-American blogger on AA before, so I am really pleased you did. Please comment again. :)

    Cheers Chas :)

    I agree on the fond – something has gone wrong.

  7. double98 says:

    We’re gonna win the league

  8. double98 says:

    Wenger is obviously an Arsenal Arsenal reader and has heard our calls and messages of support –
    he is talking about playing Giroud and Podolski as a front two…
    4-4-2 with two powerful forwards, presumably one of which will get back and swell the mid field

    “I think Podolski will play more central for us”, Wenger told Tsinghua University students in China on Thursday.

    “Giroud [Arsenal's other frontman summer signing] is a different target man who would be more the player in a 4-4-2, he knocks the ball down, protects the ball well, makes play for his partners, and is a very intelligent player who has great physique, as well as being very strong in the air.”

  9. Bryan says:

    Very good article Total

    I myself have never believed we have a god given right to win things, I have supported Arsenal long enough to of experienced long lean years of a team that didn’t even play the most attractive football either, in fact it was boring.

    I feel Arsenal have more pressure on them than most clubs, for a start we appear to be the only team in the Prem “that hasn’t won anything for 7 years” or so the press seem to suggest.
    I have afew things that really annoy me,
    Spurs finish 4th & the media & press are all “Didn’t Spurs do well getting CL/4th place”
    but with Arsenal it is “Arsenal haven’t won anything for years” or “Arsenal are just happy with 4th place these days”
    Sorry don’t get it, as far as I see Spurs spend more than we do on players most years & I think they have been massive under achievers with the squads they have had but it is us that get told we are under achievers grrrrrrrr ;-)

    You are right that football has changed so much now that the sugar daddies have come along & it is a very very hard task to better these teams.
    The thing that gets my goat though is that we sell a player for 30M & don’t go out & replace them with proven quality but instead buy a youngster for alot less money & if they do blosom into a top player the same thing happens again, hes off cos he wants to win things or more money.
    This year however there has been a change in approach with Pod &
    Giroud coming in but I still want another 2 signings Cazorla & M’Vila
    will do fine thanks ;-)
    Winning the Prem & CL is a very big ask & you have to also have an incredible bit of luck especially in CL, just look at how lucky Chavski were to win it.
    I would be happy to win a cup, just to get this frigging monkey off our back of “Arsenal haven’t won anything for 7 years”, even the pox cup would do, which personelly I would like abolished as I think we play far to much football without it.

    Lastly it just goes to show what an incredible manager we have at the helm, that each year we compete at the top & manage to secure CL football, would we do it without him in this market, I doubt it.

    So when I take my seat at the emirates for the start of the season, I will go with the hope that, yes we could win the league or CL but like Total believe it is a very small chance but at least I know we will play some fantastic football along the way :-D

  10. Dick Swiveller says:

    Indeed, taking joy in something that is, regardless of the stupid amount of time and emotion we invest in it, a hobby is something people seem to lose sight of.

    Legend though he is, should we really be taking inspiration from a half-mad drunkard though?Then again it’s worked for United all these years so *shrug*

  11. Dick Swiveller says:

    Bryan, it shows the difference in our two clubs, Arsenal not winning is big news, Spurs not winning is just business as normal.

  12. Bryan says:

    true lol but Liverpool don’t get the crap we get poked at them half as much & they still haven’t manged to win the PL

  13. TotAl says:

    Hi Bryan, thanks for a great comment. :)

    Your last paragraph sums it all up nicely. Although I tell myself every season that I should not have too high expectations, deep down/subconsciously they remained unrealistically high, leading to a lot of frustration through the season.

    As the media have the same high expectations of Arsenal, or at least they keep using it as a theme, we have to put up with a lot of negativity and a very irritating comments. Why the Spuds get of so lightly, remains a mystery to me.

  14. Dick Swiveller says:

    Rafa and Roy got it pretty hard tbf, Dalglish only got away with it by spending ridiculous amounts on English players, be interesting to see how the media react to Rodgers. Maybe they don’t like our manager being foreign and still having a greater command of the English language than those who make their living from it, stranger things have happened.

  15. TotAl says:

    Haha DS, that half-drunkard has inspired a hell of a lot of people with his brilliant speeches and quotes. :)

  16. charybdis1966 says:

    Is that the glaswegian half drunk one or the one who sounds like he sells car insurance total ?

    Nice article despite the weird font frenzy you have going on there.

  17. double98 says:

    Btw great article – As a fan i expect to compete for the title year on year. but only one team can and i am realitstic enough to know that when we don’t play the game of player/owner/manager before club we are up against clubs that are artificially doped.
    So i am happy to compete and one of these years, i am sure, we will slip over the line in front and how sweet will that be.
    How hard will we party when we win a crooked game as the only straight competitor…?

    it’ll make 89 look like a christening…

    The players expect to compete, but we have perhaps not supported that expectation by buying proven winners who can show gifted players like RVP and Theo that expectation to win has to be backed up by an absolute refusal ro lose.
    you can’t expect some one else will carry you over the line…
    If the Sagna misses a tackle its as much Theo’s fault so Theo gets there the next time to cover.
    RVP had a lot of that last year but the signings of Podolski and hopefully Cazorla will add to the winners in the squad like Rosicky. like vermaelan etc to add that disgust of failure.
    Its something that always struck me with man utd players… they are pound for pound not as good as Arsenal ever since Wenger took over – but they do all have an apparent abhorrance for defeat… Fabio, Anderson, Djemba Djemba, Carrick, etc wouldn’t get near our reserve team and yet when they play arsenal they look like warriors.
    We need that.
    Podolski is that.

    The media are the only faction that set an unfair expectation – they don’t expect you to compete they expect everyone to win – they are particualrily visious with Arsenal… Probably because of the foreign manager to be honest – “Arsene Who?” some subeditor has been getting that in the nect for 16 years i’d say.

    Wenger is considered by some (Myles Palmer) as a dictator. and he is. But that’s not a bad thing.I bet if you could choose a form of government and reasoned your way through all the layers of crap you would probably choose a benign dictator or a good king. These are the guys who run nations motivated by the best interest of the constituents of the enterprises. They don’t start unnecessary wars, they don’t export resources that they need, they don’t mistreat the people they lead, they don’t invest any importance in a failed economic model.They are not motivated by greed or money or fame. In fact their vanity is that they are seen in this light.

    they are rare and precious.
    Only a fool would want Wenger out regardless of where we finish next year.

  18. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Great article TA

    I can never lower my expectations though. Arsenal is all about striving to be the best and we are the best. Infact, we are the bestest of the bestest and will prove it this year by winning the league.

    The reason we get stick from the media is that deep down these manc, scouse, totnumb supporting plonkers know what we all know and there just jealous. Just admit it all you Arsenal hating plonkers, Arsenal are the bestest of the bestest.

  19. Podge says:

    We have played 3 cup finals and came within 4 points of winning the league(08) in the last 7 years with a bit of luck we could have won 4 trophies in the last 7 years including the premiership and champions league. Arsenal have not been far from success the last 7 years, there have been factors that worked against us and contributed to key losses/draws.

    Poor refereeing has blighted many a season for Arsenal 08 in particular, injuries(that damn word) and the regularly mentioned wembly pitch.The pitch at wembly was a disgrace although it is better now, we played an fa cup semi final against Chelsea where after controlling the first half hour the pitch began to cut up horribly which suited Chelsea and they went on to win. Carling cup final against Birmingham where the ball just bobbled again and again.

    The players/manager aren’t blameless many occasions the tactics have been wrong(easy to say in hindsight) and the performance/work ethic just not there.

    Will Arsenal win something this season? depends on a number of things; we have to have a fit squad, that is the most important factor, the humility the article talks about must be there, often this team doesn’t work hard enough just waits for the opposition to make a mistake sometimes we have to force that mistake.Luck; with referees in particular and also goalposts they have been a scourge for us in recent times.

    Fan support is vital, the players play to win, for themselves and for us. When it’s hard you can give up on yourself but it’s nearly impossible to give up on millions of people who want you to win and succeed. Over the last few years many Arsenal ‘fans’ have wanted(on some level) the club to fail so that Wenger will be removed and a new manager who spends 30m+ on individual players and plays 4-4-2 will replace him.

    Give the players a fanbase worth fighting for and trophies will come

  20. Red Arse says:

    Hi TA, :-)

    Another smashing Post from you.

    I empathize with a lot of what you say in your article.
    From a purely personal point of view, I often engage in a dichotomy with myself regarding my enjoyment of simply being an Arsenal fan and the desire for my club to win things.

    How so? Well on the one hand there is the calm, logical persona that just cannot get enough of watching Arsenal play, and to engage in living all matters Arsenal, including reading and commenting on blogs such as AA.

    Specifically, for me, there is the desire to live in the “now” so that after every game I will enjoy reading other fans’ appraisals and join in the general euphoria or the soulful commiserations, as appropriate, but only for a short time.
    I want to continuously experience and be part of this quickly changing “now” and to move on to the next adventure, to anticipate the new joys/concerns about the next game, and happily consign the last and previous game(s) to the past. They are over and done; goodbye.

    But the other part of my psyche, the less rational part, if you like, sometimes wants to rail against the injustice of the oilers buying their trophies, and seeks to find a way of levelling up the playing field.
    This leads me to place hope and a little trust in the remedy held out by the FFP rules reining in the profligacy of these multi-billionaire curs. Only for that hope to fade when the Chavs go out and pile on new layers of exorbitantly expensive players.

    So, the temptation to unleash one or both of our own multi-billionaire shareholders can become overwhelming, because I am first and foremost a fan. I live Arsenal, I eat, sleep and dream Arsenal and I care not a jot for the owners, whoever they may be, neither does that part of me care how they choose to run the club.

    Hence the dichotomy, my rational, professional self cannot easily forsake the ‘correct’ way, the self sustaining balancing the books model, preferred by Kroenke, but my visceral self, my Gooner self, would happily eschew all that financial precision, and happily cheer Arsenal to the rafters if they won every trophy on offer, and be content to leave all the resultant moralizing to those who do not understand my driving need for my club to be successful! To be the greatest!

    Trying to resolve those conflicting feelings and desires is difficult, but I seek comfort in what Aeschylus said;

    “And even in our sleep pain that cannot forget falls drop by drop upon the heart, and in our own despair, against our will, comes wisdom to us by the awful grace of God.”

    Perhaps, in a non blasphemous footballing sense, he meant, that after all is said and done, Arsene is the fans’ God, and he will guide us to victory.
    So, I will stick with that! :-)

  21. oz gunner says:

    great article TA, for me that is definitely what brings me the most joy (the way we play). But like Terry I go into each season thinking we will win everything (always have, always will), yeah it’s not realistic but I just couldn’t go into a season without feeling that way. I’d rather be optimistic (right up until it is not mathematically possible) and crash when we lose. Everyone has their different approach to a season though. If someone asks “will Arsenal win the lot next season?” I’ll say “bloody oath we will!”

    Then if we lose I can at least take solace in the fact that we play some god damn beautiful football

  22. Kay says:

    People should stop thinking “success” only refers to a club that has won one of only two or three titles on offer during the season. This would mean out of 20 teams, 16 or so that have won no trophy in the last few years are total failures and shouldn’t be playing football. Success is in the honour and dignity with which you go about trying to win. Arsenal have been one of the greatest and consistent achivers and they have done so with dignity and honour by spending sensibly.

  23. TotAl says:

    Hi Double, that is a very find comment @11.44. Wenger as a benevolent dictator or a good king is probably not far from the truth! :)

    I read an article once that compared Wenger to RedNose and the overall conclusion was they are both so successful because they are good at dominating – they are both forceful characters.

    Chary, the car insurance one! :)

    Terry, I knew you would come out with that comment! :)

  24. TotAl says:

    Double, btw interesting comment by Arsene. Not sure whether it means 4-4-2 though, but it sounds like he is going to let us play differently this season. I like the way you write-up the Pod and I hope he’ll come good at Arsenal.

  25. double98 says:

    TotAl – its weird that he says Giroud is a player for a 4-4-2.. why by him if you are gonna play 4-3-3 (4-5-1) – you will do unto him as you hath done unto Chamakh
    And then talking about playing podolski centrally ? Not as a 1 in a 4-5-1 surely – he doesn’t strike me as a static magician like RVP (the LLP (Least Loyal Player)
    But then he hasn’t been afraid to talk up players as having natural positions and then not playing them ever in those…. “Walcott has all the attributes to play through the middle” so let’s stick im on the wing :)

  26. double98 says:

    Reports that Arsenal have signed Nuri Sahin on loan from real…

    Was cazorla a feint?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuri_%C5%9Eahin

  27. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    hahahaha D98, “They beat the SPUDS to his signiture”

  28. TotAl says:

    RA :)

    I have sympathy for your dichotomy, but, as you are well aware, nothing will change re ownership for the foreseeable future. I love the quote! :)

    Oz :)

    We need people like you and Terry on AA, so keep it up!

    Podge :)

    Thanks for a great comment, and you are right the fans have an important role to play as well. Luckily, the fans were great last season and the Emirates is slowly but steadily growing into a fortress.

    Kay :)

    That is a fine comment. “Success is in the honour and dignity with which you go about trying to win” – simply beautiful and beautifully simple.

  29. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    hahahaha, now wiki have removed it. The swines.

  30. oz gunner says:

    I can’t get onto Arseblog news (probably exploded from the amount of hits it’s drawn) but newsnow is saying we have signed real madrid player sahin on loan

  31. TotAl says:

    Double, if Wenger moves back to 4-4-2 I would be amazed and yet, really look forward to the season. :)

    Looking at the first half against Malaysia, it was back to 4-5-1 with Chamakh being the holding striker. From what I have seen of Giroud, he would be a better option than Chamakh and the Pod could have a free role in midfield, similar to Gervinho’s role a few days ago.

  32. 26may1989 says:

    Bravo, Total, love the post.

    Sahin? Interesting. I’d forgotten about him, but at Dortmund he was great, so I’d be on for that one.

  33. 26may1989 says:

    On formations, I was delighted to see the Prof refer to 4-4-2, and I look forward to seeing Giroud plus AN Other having a go at plenty of defences, but I think we’ll be varying our formations and positions more than ever next season.

  34. Bryan says:

    I have a feeling that Podolski & Giroud will play up front together & I am hoping they will click like peas in a ahem Pod :-D

  35. TotAl says:

    The French-German strike-force of Girodolski!

    Hi 26, hope you had a nice break. :)

    I don’t think Arsene is one for using a variety of formations throughout the season, but he might want to try out a few things before he settles on one.

    Sahin would be great news :)

  36. Bryan says:

    Sahin & Cazorla would be great, or am I just being greedy haha ;-)

  37. dandan says:

    Stands up and applauds a super article based on reason and common sense. Well done TA.
    The unsustainable belief among so many Arsenal fans that we have some kind of divine right to win something drives me up the wall. Sure I love winning things, but I enjoy watching the beautiful football we are capable of more.
    It will be interesting to see the reaction towards Liverpool from fans and press alike, if Rodgers gets them knocking the ball about on the deck and playing attractively, will they be subjected to the dog’s abuse that we and our manager have received in recent years.
    Changes are moving apace now around the Emirates and yes I am excited, but I look at Chelsea and City and realise that, their kind of finance is beyond us and gives an advantage that it more about the damage they do to the sides they plunder than the football they play. Utd however are not in that league, they face problems of their own and it not beyond the bounds of possibility that very own footballing Armageddon is not far away as they continue to be abused by their absent landlords. Pigeons financial and otherwise do have a tendency to come home to roost eventually.
    What would Portsmouth and Glasgow Rangers give for no Trophy’s over the last seven years and a return to the Status Quo?
    But for me the among all the changes, the biggest benefit is that Mr Wenger will still be there to guide, build and manage our club and who knows, given that FFP really work. Where he takes us, could satisfy both the half full and half empty fans.

  38. 26may1989 says:

    Strong line-ups in the Arse v City game in Beijing. Well done to the AFC commercial team for having the Arsenal players’ names in Chinese – City look like saps having theirs in English.

  39. 26may1989 says:

    Not a bad start for us, but both sides are giving the ball away pretty easily.

  40. oz gunner says:

    bugger I’m no good with time differences. In how many hours/mins is it before the game starts?

  41. 26may1989 says:

    The game’s 15 minutes in, Oz.

  42. oz gunner says:

    thanks 26
    bugger bugger bugger

  43. 26may1989 says:

    We’re playing 4-5-1 today: midfield trio of Arteta, Diaby and Song, with Santos and Walcott out wide, and Gervinho up front.

  44. dandan says:

    26 The Gerv and Theo look lively,

  45. 26may1989 says:

    Agreed DD, and Santos too. Just need to get more discipline about possession and the defensive line (I’m sure Steve B has his notebook out).

  46. Bryan says:

    Is there a website to watch the game on for free?

  47. dandan says:

    some shot that theooooooooo

  48. dandan says:

    it is on ESPN

  49. dandan says:

    Bloody hell Rasp will have kittens all this long Range shooting :-)

  50. kelsey says:

    good game, Santos has got a free role, auxillary striker ;)

  51. dandan says:

    Kelsey have they cut your phone again? :-)

  52. kelsey says:

    actually they did dandan, on/off for about a week.

  53. dandan says:

    thought they must have Mate, ring when you can

  54. 26may1989 says:

    Just back to the screen and see City are now winning – who scored? Anyone on our side to blame?

  55. 26may1989 says:

    2-0, Yaya. Crap defending by all of them.

  56. Bryan says:

    Expected to lose really, sure they must have stronger 11 out there,
    Can someone put up Arsenal line up please

  57. GunnerN5 says:

    26M,

    2-0 is due to two mid-field give aways more than poor defending.
    First Arteta then Song, both were guilty of multiple give aways.

  58. 26may1989 says:

    Zabaletta got the first, on the break apparently. Same old, same old I’m afraid, need to be a lot smarter on defensive positioning. And be more jealous about not giving up possession.

    But overall, seemed to be plenty of good work in the first half.

  59. GunnerN5 says:

    Bryan.

    Fabianski
    Gibbs
    Jenkinson
    Santos
    Vermaelin
    Bartley
    Diaby
    Arteta
    Song
    Grrvinho
    Walcott

  60. Bryan says:

    lol were 2-0 down from the start with Fabianski playing then, worse keeper we have ever had

  61. Bryan says:

    oh & thanks, nearly forgot my manners there ;-)

  62. kelsey says:

    Both goals came about from Jenkinson and co being too far upfield and then being caught on the counter attack .Our right side defence is wide open.

  63. Arseniel says:

    Wow. How refreshing. Intellectual and emotional intelligence in equal measure from a football fan and blogger. Sadly though, wasted on an awful lot of our fellow gooners! Say no more.

  64. GunnerN5 says:

    Jenkinson looks really strong, which is great to see considering that we will be without Sagna for a period of time.
    Bartley is also surprising good , very positive play and extremely confident – if he’s not sent out on loan again he will give our CB’s reason to be on their toes.

  65. GunnerN5 says:

    Kelsey,

    The second goal was scored on MC’s right flank, it was Gibbs and Santos who were out for lunch.

  66. Bryan says:

    I can watch it now, the bueaty of the internet & a cost of £5 outlay haha

  67. GunnerN5 says:

    Kelsey,

    Just saw both goals again and on both occasions Santos and Gibbs were missing.

  68. charybdis1966 says:

    Chamakh, Coquelin & Oxo on for Diaby, Walcott and Arteta. Hmmm…

  69. Bryan says:

    Gervinho should of scored

  70. Bryan says:

    Its all us but when City break out we look incredibly vulnerable

  71. TT says:

    Hope no one gets hurt. Really slippery out there right now.

    Arsenal attacking well I think. Defense is shaky, whenever City get a chance to counter.

  72. Bryan says:

    Damn the Ox just hit both posts, what a shot

  73. 26may1989 says:

    Bloody hell, the image has gone but O-C apparently just hit both posts with a shot and Gibbs headed over from the rebound!

  74. kelsey says:

    Yes but the original mistake came from our right side ;)
    Chamakh has no confidence,just wants to lay the ball off as quickly as he can. Glad to see miguel get a runout.

  75. Slimgingergooner says:

    Like the look of Ox in the middle, Coquelin too. Miquel has done much better than Bartley did. Not sure why Chamakh comes for the ball to feet when we have the ball out wide. He’s a brilliant header of the ball, but suppose that’s the problem, we don’t cross. He needs to move to a team who use wide players.

  76. 26may1989 says:

    Bugger, Arsenal TV’s image has gone again. There’s a danger I’ll have to do some work if it doesn’t come back…..

  77. TT says:

    Maybe I’ve been too harsh with Arsenal defense. There have been some good interceptions to stop City.

  78. Bryan says:

    Were really unlucky not to be back in this at 2-1, it would to be good to see how we do at 2-1 with time left but alas still 2-0

  79. richie says:

    I’m with Chas at 11:01 I’ve been a Gooner forever and a day and I can’t understand how this idea came about that we as a club have to win something all the time. It’s got nothing to do with ambition; it’s got to do with reality! I remember the swinging 60’s that swung every which way but Arsenals. To win something in 1970 at the beginning of a new decade was magnificent; to follow it up with another 2 tropes was incredible but no one as far as I understood it, thought, that’s it! We’ve cracked the magic formula we’ll never go hungry again. Another decade will never pass without a trophy. We had great success under GG but no one ever thought next year the titles ours. We often sweated game after game at 0-0 with teams battering at the door, if we nicked a goal we’d hold on to the lead as if our very existence depended on it! The fans weren’t complacent back then, “no one” as far as I can remember ever started a season with GG at the helm thinking we’ve got the best team, we’ll piss it! As with the post yesterday concerning the Spuds turning a negative into a positive so we turned our “1 nil to the Arsenal” into a virtual taunt.

    I understand how some fans after “the invincible” season might’ve thought with this team we’ll dominate things next year, but even that ignores the reality of other teams ambitions to check our invincibility. We were there sat on top of a pile ready to be knocked off, some fans seem to ignore the reality of how other teams would raise their game when playing us. The other thing that has raised expectations (dare I say it) is our constant top 4 finish. This is a double edged sword for those blessed with unreal expectations, because they reason (not unreasonably) how can we be so close but never quite get there? Or the far more ridiculous the club only has an ambition (year on year) to reach the top 4, and there’s where our ambitions end.

    We’ve all got the Olympics to look forward to and many can’t wait to see the blue ribbon 100mts event, countless expect “Bolt” to win and maybe even set a new record. If not he might get piped at the post by Yohan Blake, but imagine if you will the rest of the field, imagine the sprinter lining up against those two? The sprinter that hasn’t as yet run a sub 10 second 100mts this season, a sprinter that has never clocked the sorts of times Bolt and Blake have. This sprinter is the top man in his country, and even the top man in Europe, but lining up against those 2 because he hasn’t clocked the times of either B&B should we say he lacks ambition? I contest he wants to win as much if not more than those two big guns. Anyone who thinks Arsene Wenger doesn’t have ambitions for both the Arse as a club, and the set of players as a team seriously ignores reality. The competition to get into the top 4 is Hugh! It’s far from a given. I just wish reality would kick in and bite many of our own right in the Arse. If Chelski hadn’t been financially doped up who would’ve stayed as Manu’er’s rivals? If Money Citeh hadn’t been financially doped up would they have beaten their neighbours and now be champions?

    We don’t have a sugar daddy owner or investor as much as some might wish for one! “Jabba certainly isn’t one” Live with it! If that means some of our supporters have to lower their unrealistic expectations then so be it! The quicker the better, because those are the realities! For my part I have never thought we had some sort of divine inevitable right to win so much as a box of chocolates. Nevertheless I’m hopeful for the new season because we have a great set up at the club, good players, a great manager and none of the financially doped clubs have a divine right either, it would be nice if they cancelled each other out. Its never the idea that we’ll definitely win the title that makes me anticipate the seasons start, its the great football we play that will always makes me optimistic!

  80. charybdis1966 says:

    Funny comment from the grauniad commentary: Gibbs is finding an awful lot of space down the left, but every time he’s sent clear, he can only find a City head with a hopeless, aim-free cross.

  81. richie says:

    P.S. Pity me not our club! I started typing with my two fingers right after Chas’s 11:01 its bloody 2:30 now :-)

  82. Slimgingergooner says:

    What I’ve seen of this Eisfeld kid looks very promising. When he was at Dortmund he was considered to be more promising than Gotze until he had a bad injury. Aneke’s done well too since coming on.

  83. kelsey says:

    regardless of the personel playing we look quite good in attack, nice to see a few shoots on target but despite overwhelming possession the defence as a unit still needs sorting out.
    We look fitter than City as well. All in all a good warm up and food for thought for AW

  84. 26may1989 says:

    Agreed, Kelsey. High line defending is all very well, but we need to be more streetwise, else we’ll always get hit on the break.

    Finishes 2-0. What I saw I liked, including in a funny way the defensive aspects, since it emphasises what needs to be done.

  85. Bryan says:

    yeh we played very well, could say we deserved at least a point but I only saw 2nd half which we totally dominated.
    loads of shots rained in on there goal & talking of rain, the weather was shooking ;-)

  86. Bryan says:

    haha i’m already getting into it “at least a point” a draw I mean but they caught us out on break afew times so more defensive work needed

  87. johnnie nyc says:

    I love Jenkinsons spirit, and i think he can be one of the great crossers— but they were his mistakes today… glad its preseason..at least we took some shots…even gervinho had attempts !

  88. RockyLives says:

    A fine essay TotAL, and it has brought out some marvellous comments (I particularly enjoyed D98’s at 11.44).

    I love to see the Arsenal winning trophies and I love to see us playing great football. But I would still be an Arsenal supporter even if we were sh*t.

    If we fell through the divisions and were planning in the Auto Windshield Trophy or whatever it’s called I would still support the Arse. Might find it a bit harder to get to see the games out here in Canada though :(

  89. Bryan says:

    Yeh johnie, Gervinho had attempts but he really should of scored one chance, he hasn’t been practising his finishing obviously ;-)

  90. TotAl says:

    Hi Dandan :)

    Great to see you back, and thanks for the fine, socratesesque comment. Did you and your wife go on that cruise, and if so, how was it?

    Hi Richie :)

    Thanks for a fine comment that goes very well with the post. Good to see you can blog during broad daylight too! :)

    Hi Arseniel :)

    Thanks. You’ll find there are a lot of bloggers on AA who like a bit of intellectuality and sentimentality every now and again, so please come back and feel free to participate in our debates. You’ll enjoy it! :)

  91. RockyLives says:

    That’s OK Bryan

    Last year Gerv was banging them in in pre-season, then stopped once the real stuff began. Maybe he’s doing it the other way round this year :)

  92. Reddawn says:

    I thought Jenkinson was cought out of position on both gaols…maybe I was watching another match!

  93. TotAl says:

    Cheers Rocky :)

    Re the game. I only saw 2nd half on ESPN – they did not have the first half for some reason, but the whole game is on again tonight.

    2nd half was very good though. How we did not score, remains a mystery but we had the chances and the woodwork was unkind to us. The only player I worry about at this stage is Gervinho. He does everything so well, except finishing his chances. He desperately needs a couple of goals. Luckily we are playing Koln in Koln again, and last time we were there he scored a brace.

    And how many long-distance shots?! That must be a new tactic and long may it continue.

  94. LB says:

    Jenkinson and Gibbs were caught out of position for both the goals.

  95. kelsey says:

    Fantastic support from the locals.

    Reddawn is righ,Jenkinson was initially caught out for both goals.he is a great prospect,good crosser but is he ready to fill Sagna’s boots especially with our opening 6 fixtures.

  96. That’s a worry Kelsey – do we have sufficient quality right back cover. Will we see Djourou there then ?

  97. RockyLives says:

    I know I shouldn’t do this to myself, but I just had a look at some Nuri Sahin tuff on Youtube.

    There are some reports (not confirmed) that we’re getting him on loan from real Madrid.

    He looks another fine player. Very left footed (as a player that is Chas. Being Turkish I doubt he’s a Catholic :) ) but a beautiful long passer. He is also very tough in the tackle and looks athletic. In the compilation I watched he was playing as a deepish lying central MF.

    Out of him and Cazorla, I’d prefer the Spaniard but either would be a strong addition to the squad. I can’t see us going for both. If indeed we’re even really in for either.

  98. Bryan says:

    I certainly hope you right Rocky

    I also hope we get all our bad luck out the way in pre-season friendlies

  99. RockyLives says:

    chary
    It would be disastrous to be JD at RB again. If Jenks is looking shaky we would hopeful put Coquelin in until Sagna is back.

  100. It’s a shame The Rock, Jenks has a terrific attitude but not ready for our starting 11 as of yet, it seems.

    We’ll just have to hold our breath for who we get in outof Sahin and Mazola…..I’d go for the spaniard for more than just the reasons you’d think, more playing time last season, better experience, higher profile(a gazebo signing at the very least).

  101. Bryan says:

    I would play Coquelin in Sagna’s place until he gets back, thought he was superb there when he played last year.
    I agree Jenkinson looks a good prospect but too early to throw him into the deep end

  102. oz gunner says:

    @ Bryan

    no need to shell out money. All you need is to download a program called ‘SopCast’ (it’s free), and go to a website called wiziwig. Wiziwig has it all and basically all you do is copy a url into the program and bobs ur uncle you have the game for free. I never have problems with it and it allows me to watch friendlies and FA Cup matches which i never see over here.

    If you look into it and have some problems just ask and i’ll help you step by step

  103. 26may1989 says:

    I agree the goals came after Jenkinson was pushing upfield, but I’m not sure I’d automatically blame him for that: he may well have been following instructions.

    He’s not going to get ahead of Sagna for a long time yet but there’s some real talent there. And my third pick RB would be Yennaris, he did well when called upon last season. Djourou, never again….

  104. oz gunner says:

    Don’t forget we have yennaris who can play there too. So he, jenks and coquelin can hold down the fort until sagna comes back

  105. TotAl says:

    I have my doubts about Jenkinson too, but it is only early days. He is such a hard worker and once he hits a bit of form, and plays in a settled back-four, I hope he’ll come good. If not, I reckon we end up with Koz as RB now and again. A back-four of Koz-Mert-TV-Gibbs would work for me until Bacary is back.

  106. Bryan says:

    Thanks Oz but the one I pay £5 to, gives you 2 months for that price of watching every single game & I ain’t complaining with that :-)

  107. TotAl says:

    26, good call on Yenaris. He can play almost anywhere: a very promising player!

  108. TotAl says:

    If indeed TV becomes our captain we will need to incorporate both Mertesacker and Koz as much as possible, as neither will be pleased with a role on the bench for too long. That’s why I believe Koz as RB is quite likely to happen when the real games start.

  109. TotAl says:

    Oz, good call too :)

  110. Bryan says:

    Personelly I don’t like Koz or Verm playing as right back or left back, I don’t think either are anygood as wide defenders.
    would prefer us to play players in correct positions, even if it means playing youngsters

  111. oz gunner says:

    @ TA

    you are right he is a fighter. Lets not forget he had a run of games last season before his back injury that left us praising his name. A bit of confidence and a settled back line and he will deliver. The boy never hides!

    @ Bryan

    haha that is a good deal. that’s too steep for me though

  112. JM says:

    Until Sagna is back ….. we could use a 3 men CB defence with a 4 men midfield in front. (Yes, I have posting on using the 3-4-1-2 formation as the alternative since the beginning).

    Koscielny-Mertesacker-Vermaelen
    Coquelin-Song-Arteta-Gibbs/Santos

    & we could still play with 2 centre forwards (Giroud & Podolski), with 1 main striker & 1 side forward.

    What remains is the attacking midfielder/playmaker/second striker position.

  113. oz gunner says:

    Junior Hoilett to QPR, promising player but personally i believe we have a better prospect in Ryo

  114. RockyLives says:

    I know I should know better than to get annoyed by the perpetual anti-Arsenal reporting bias but…

    According to reports of today’s game on Newsnow, “A strong Arsenal side was brushed aside by Manchester City, who were missing most of their Euro 2012 stars.”

    So our full first team (oh, sorry, without Szcz, Sagna, Wilshere, Koscielny, BFG, Podolski, Girou, RvP to name but eight) lost to a Citeh team of unknowns… you know, players I’ve never heard of before like Aguero, Tevez, Kompany, Yaya Toure, Kolo Toure, Adam Johnston…

    It makes you want to weep.

  115. ‘Twas ever thus…The Rock.

  116. TotAl says:

    Rocky, it is very irritating but that is why we have to stick to Kay’s wisdom: “Success is in the honour and dignity with which you go about trying to win”. The media would far rather concentrate on a meaningless 2-0 scoreline. Anybody who watched the 2nd half could see that we were not brushed aside.

    It is a friendly, early on in the season and Wenger is trying out things all over the pitch, but analysing this would be far too much work for most of the lazy red tops. :(

  117. Bryan says:

    Rocky

    Although I only saw the second half, if having 60% of the possesion & seeing City only manage to get out ther half 3 times is being brushed aside, well I’m a Spud lol

  118. oz gunner says:

    @ Balboa

    any article that has the headline:

    ‘Arsenal a long way behind Manchester City on evidence of pre-season friendly’
    and states: “Of course, Wenger will play down the significance of the outcome.” should clearly only write for the official man city website

  119. Bryan says:

    I know he was only on the pitch for a short time but Eisfeld has got something about him, think we have another gem in the making there

  120. Red Arse says:

    Hi Rockadoodle, :-)

    Bit surprised by so many knocking Corporal Jenks.
    Clearly, both Citeh and ourselves were using the game to get fitness levels up, and also taking the opportunity to try out some tactics.

    Gibbs and Jenks were being used as attacking wing backs for most of the first half with Theo, in particular, going into the middle as aften as not. I do not believe any of them were doing that without being instructed to do so.

    Both goals came a result of sloppy passing in midfield by Song and Arteta respectively giving the ball away, which of course meant the Citeh breakaways found no one at home.

    Gibbs and Jenks being picked out as the culprits seems a tad harsh as I believe both had strong games.

    Corporal Jones (?) would have had a field day, I suspect, “We are doomed Mr Mainwaring, bring in Djourou – no wait – bring in Kozzer, or do I mean Yennaris — bring in someone, anyone, but not that strapping big bloke who runs all day, has a shot like a cannon and plays international football for Finland!” :-)

  121. TotAl says:

    Agreed Bryan, Eisfeld is a fine playmaker in the making.

  122. Bryan says:

    I’m actually quite optimistic about this coming season, think things are starting to drop into place & even think losing RVP may be good for us

  123. kelsey says:

    RA,

    I don’t think anyone has been harsh on jenkinson or Gibbs. ;)

    Total, as usual a good post and I am too long in the tooth to worry anymore if we win a trophy or not.Of course I want to feel that winning feeling again but though this might not go down well with some of the faithful on here, money aside, we need AW to change his tactics and possibly Bould will help him. I don’t have to remind anyone the games we lost last year to so called lower less prestigious teams and also how often we had the majority of a game only to go a goal down, invariably from the opposition’s sole chance, and finished chasing the game. it happened far too often.

    When fit nothing is wrong with our first choice back line, but we just can’t defend as a unit.
    AW has always been attacked minded,but last season we got found out more and more. We need a better squad depth to supplement the squad if we are to achieve at the least a top 4 finish.

    For example,le Coq,lansbury,frimpong,miguel,Jenkinson, squillacci,Chamakh,,fabianski are not players who can change a game.Some of the youngsters might make it to the level expected at Arsenal but I doubt many will.

    The Ox is the exception and I expect him to be a star this season.

  124. TotAl says:

    Hi Kelsey, all good points. To me it looks like we will play a very solid 4-5-1 next season and Wenger is putting various pieces of the jigsaw together at the moment. Defending as a unit is indeed the big priority at the moment.

  125. Red Arse says:

    Hi Kelsey, :-)

    Well, you know that I always admit to knowing nozzink!! :-)

    I was just standing up for what I perceived as the underdogs.
    Pre-season games are no time to be making snap judgements, though that will never change.

    It is all a matter of opinions – and I have plenty more – most of them wrong!! :-)

    On a personal note, I don’t mean to rake up bad memories, and won’t mention this again, but following on from your comment yesterday, can I just say how sorry I am for you and everyone else who had families swept up in the horror of the holocaust.

    Words are so inadequate to describe the feeling of revulsion I have at the inhumanity of the perpetrators, and my outrage at the injustice of the continued discrimination. :-( :-(

  126. glic says:

    Just in and haven`t read the post yet and will have to read it tomorrow. I will just reply to peaches comment @ 10;29pm yesterday.

    I`m not naive where Frimpong`s comment is concerned, he was naive and will get his well deserved punishment .
    Where I am naive, is in my upbringing. I was brought up in a great multi-cultural area . I didn`t see the colour of kids skins or kids religeous preferances or where they or their parents came from, all I saw was my best mates and friends and this why I remarked in acknowledgement of what Terry said, ” Why cant we just all be friends”. So , your probably right , I am naive, but I like to think in a good way, like you, I have zero tolerance of the “Y “, ” N ” or any other vulgar racist remark.
    We have a fantastic multi-cultural country and Arsenal lead the way with it`s supporters, what a great mixture we are , which is also reflected on this site.

    chas
    As a couch potatoe, I take great offence to you saying Totnumb are spuds !. :)
    I see the Archery got underway today, we are so crap at it, we haven`t done any good since Robin Hood snatched the Gold in the 15th century .

  127. Red Arse says:

    Glic,

    I think Brave Sir Robin The Hood, only got a silver behind the Swiss champion William Tell.

    William Tell shot the apple off his son’s head for the Gold, whereas Brave Sir Robin The Hood, shot Little John in the arse (nal) for silver. Of course, there was just the two of them in the final.

    How are your wall ocks doing? :-)

  128. TotAl says:

    Two fine comments by two fine AA bloggers, Glic and RA! :) :)

    Enjoy the opening ceremony everyone, and especially those who originate from East-London.

  129. glic says:

    No way Redders, he`s a Swiss liar that Willy Tell Tales, he was on the run from the Swiss Child Cruelty police for putting an apple on the boys head. Willy Tell Tales then had a Bounty put on his head, which Rob of the Hood then shot off to win a Wispa Gold !.

  130. Red Arse says:

    Glic, :-)

    Off to watch the Olympics!!

    Nite TA!! :-)

  131. glic says:

    Just read it, lovely post TotAl. You can join the glic club, a realistic goal club . For the next few years, anything better than 4th will be an achievement, then we will kick on when the Chavs and City get grabbed by the FFP ( Fuzzy Furry Plums ).
    There is a solution to the Pint glass half empty or half full. Do what Terry does, put your contents of a Pint glass into a Half Pint glass and it will be full !.

  132. TotAl says:

    The realistic goal club – hahaha. Good one Glic! :) Enjoy the opening ceremony.

  133. neamman says:

    Those of us watching from the 50s..my God..has it been that long.. have no expectations. Weremember the time only 4000plus turned up for a game one rainy night. No, I wont lie I wasnt one of them but I did have an excuse.
    All I want from Arsenal are some players who love the club as I do. I just wish we had a few more like those Rangers first teamers who have stayed with the club even though they are down in Division 3.

  134. neamman says:

    Anyone who denies the Holocaust is a moron of the highest level. On any level it was a tragedy, the shame is such tragedies still occur {Cambodia, Rwanda, etc etc] and as a species we have learned nothing.

  135. Gooner In Exile says:

    Right, first off a fine post TA, I read earlier but did not have time to comment as I was focused on getting work done and getting home for Olympic Ceremony.

    If fans don’t lower their expectations they will constantly be upset.

    Haven’t watched City highlights but cam someone explain why both the BBC website and others are reporting Arsenal and Arsene had his most senior players to choose from , you’d think their journos would do just a smudge of research.

    Sagna
    Koscielny
    BFG
    Wilshere
    Podolski
    Giroud
    Rosicky

  136. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Just watching the game now. None of you spoil sports tell me the score.

  137. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Weve got all the support…..and Mancini is a Ponce

  138. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Those chinese leterings on the back of the shirts are rather fetching. went out with a girl a tattoo like that. She was delighful,bit like Diabys fitness.

  139. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Jenks looks a bit dodgy, but i still love him

  140. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Great move by Diaby and Gerv. Diaby looks realy fit. Wonder if hes got a tattoo?

  141. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    We are playing a very high line which is enabling Stuart Robson to go on one of his orgasmic moaning rants

  142. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    More than matching them technicly. Nice curler from Santo. if we buy santi we will have santi santos. I like that

  143. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    If we play such a high line we must employ a sitting midfielder. Thats why i would like MVila. In my professional opinion, and i know what ime talking about, we need a Mr Negative Midfielder. a footballing version of AA’s Tom Stoned….sorry Tom. hahaha

  144. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Decent effort from Theo. He looks physicaly stronger

  145. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    city are incredibly narrow. there front 3 are pressing on our back line trying to put them off.The swines.

  146. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Great skills from gerv and good shot from santa. we realy do look ok, just vulnerable to playing high and not having Mr Negative and city pressing on our defence, the swines.

  147. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Great run from yaya. He is truly a beast. The swine.

  148. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Crap

  149. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Jenks was up the pitch and there was no midfield support for a back 3. Its simply to offensive

  150. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Oh hell

  151. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Jenks was dragged inside and we got exposed on the left again. Not enough bodies in the centre either

  152. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    half time. We played ok but we realy need Tom Stoned in midfield.

  153. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Alex chamberlin is a wonderful prospect. would like to see him behind the striker

  154. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Great move. Starte by Chamberlin. Once we get the right balance we will be formidable

  155. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    robson needs his nuts crunched, but he would probably enjoy it. Defenitly gets a bona from critising

  156. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Great strike from chamberlin. I have the answer, and i know what ime talking about. Jack and Chamberlin in advanced midfield roles with Tom Stoned sitting behind them.

  157. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Gibbs and Jenks are great talents. the teams balance needs working on.

  158. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Like the look of Aneke. very strong and skillful. could be the new Pele. exciting times. Am realy enjoying this game

  159. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    hopefuly pod and giro will give us end product. The team needs more penetration….but dont we all? hahaha

  160. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    So much talent in this squad, but a bit frustrating. Bit like going to a party were there are tons of gorgeous women but the wife is with you.

  161. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    playing a high line means your always running bacwards when defending, cant be good can it? if if only we could find a solution between are offensive instincts and defensive security

  162. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    chamack has shown some nice build up play but dosnt look as though he could score in a turkish brothel. No end product. And according to Mrs Terry i should know all about that.

  163. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Aneke is a very interesting player. Might get a few chances this season.

    Afobe has good movement and Eisfield has good technique

  164. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    when chamack runs his arms dont move, bit like Mr Bean, or a cival servant running away from a dog

  165. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    another great strike from Chamberlin, he looks sensational. The pitch is waterlogged now. Makes chamacks running look even stranger, like a man running whilst halucinating.

  166. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    another good touch from aneke

  167. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Final whistle. Man of the match Alex Chamberlin. Cock of the match stuart robson. Would like him to be scared out of his mind whilst been chased by a sexualy frenzied no arms moving chamack.

    Night all

  168. oz gunner says:

    haha brilliant commentary Terry, move over bbc updates, i agree with the aneke comments too, look forward to seeing him in the cups matches.

  169. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Morning all,
    Late to the Total post discussion, but a great read, thank you.
    My expectations in terms of trophies are zero with the squad as it is. However, what really concerns me, and it is the most important aspect of my expectations, is the quality of the football, and I’m afraid that’s pretty low, and I am not prepared to compromise on this.
    Where did the Sahin rumour emerge from?
    He would be terrific, but so less important than a playmaker.

  170. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Oz,
    Are you still there?
    Went to Brasil Egypt the other night, and I have a small report for you :-)

  171. kelsey says:

    Morning Micky,

    will you stop repeating what I said at 5.08 p.m. :)

  172. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Hello Kelsey,
    Damn, you noticed me rehashing your wise words.
    Just remind me though, which one’s you are referring to :-)

  173. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Sorry, didn’t see the 5:08 bit of your comment, it was below my screen. Let’s see. Ah ha. The “game changing” type of players. Yes, 100% agree with that.

  174. MickyDidIt89 says:

    What really worries me about our attack is this.
    From the midfield forwards, we have:
    Song, Arteta +1, and Podolski, Giroud +1. Whether you arrange this as a 4-4-2, or a 4-3-3, what we clearly lack is world class craft. To my mind, as you say, Ox is the jewel.
    I do agree with you over the defence which is largely down to organization, discipline and continuity of personnel (injuries).

  175. MickyDidIt89 says:

    What bothers me most about the way this transfer window is going is that Chelsea appear to be assembling a far more Arsenal style of fluid attacking footbally players than we are. Hazard, Mata, Oscar and Torres will all be wearing the wrong colour shirts :-(

  176. chas says:

    Terry,
    Superb. :)
    I haven’t watched it yet, but don’t really need to after that.
    A bit like going to a barbecue and bringing your own sandwiches.

    Chamakh’s running style has puzzled me for a while. He looks like he’s wearing canoes on his feet but forgot to bring the paddle.

  177. chas says:

    Micky,
    Aren’t you bored with tippy tappy?
    We’re now going for Power, Thrust and Intensity.

  178. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Hi Chas,
    Errr, yes and no.
    I think there is a balance that Arsene never got right. All out tippy tappy works for Barca, but look at the sheer quality compounded with the effect of Messi.
    We were way too average to play full-on tippy tappy. Our best/most effective football was with DB10 and Henry. Both world class, strong and oozing with your “power, thrust and intensity”.
    Brasil, bit like City last year and I reckon Chelsea next, will play solid
    back 4, defensive midfield wall but passy 2, one CF and the other 3 tippy tappy, power and thrusty world class.

  179. chas says:

    144 million reasons why Arsenal haven’t signed these players.

    This summer Chelsea has signed Eden Hazard, Oscar, Marko Marin and Thorgan Hazard — over £71million.
    Mata £23.5 million
    Torres £50 million.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/teams/chelsea/9295242/Chelseas-rebuilding-grows-with-78m-Eden-Hazard-signing.html

  180. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Chas,
    Since I first layed eyes on Chamakh, I have been wondering what the hell his running style was all about as well.
    Now I know. Perfect description :-)

  181. chas says:

    I can’t see any power and thrusty in those Chelski ladyboys.

  182. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Oi Chas,
    I know about the money (PPF, yeah that’ll work!!!!), but its the type of players.
    Blimey, Swansea played a better football style than us last term.

  183. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Look at City, the power is in the DeJongs, Barrys and Toures who play behind your poncey players :-)

  184. chas says:

    DeJong is surplus to requirements because he’s a weak link who offers nothing going forwards, Barry is feckin shite and ……..
    we shoulda signed Yaya when he was on trial from Beveren and Kolo said it was his brother that had all the talent. :)

  185. oz gunner says:

    Morning all

    haha Micky whats your report?
    I just don’t think Chelsea’s line up will cut it in the premier league, we’ve been there done that. They lose a lot of power with drogba going, and without a target man they might get bullied around by the lesser teams.

    I like Arsene’s new approach of power + pace. Give me the ox over hazard any day. As for Chelsea, how the hell do they get away with spending all this money?! FFP can’t bite soon enough!

  186. chas says:

    Me talking tactical bowlocks is a bit like asking Paul McCartney to talk about how to sing at an Olympics opening ceremony.
    Off out for some exercise.
    siya nara

  187. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Oz,
    I have a sneaky feeling Ganso may be the better option for us than Oscar.
    I agree about Ox. Wouldn’t swap him for anyone, and talking of Chelsea, I agree about the loss of Drogba, and don’t rate Mata too highly.
    I’d swap Theo, Persie, Gerv and Podolski for Pato, Ganso and Sahin.

  188. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Too much from this one. Tally ho

  189. oz gunner says:

    to me they are about the same. Ganso would be a great addition.
    Personally I’d take Podolski over Pato. I know Pato has had injury problems but to me he seems like another hype player like theo. When we played them in 2007 they were touting him as the next big thing in football but it just never eventuated. I’d give theo, gerv and rvp for lewandowski and goetze.

  190. Rasp says:

    Morning all….

    …. New post ……

  191. Gooner In Exile says:

    Altho Sir Paul had a stinker he has given us a song.

    “Naa naa naa nanana naaaah
    nanana naaaah
    Giroud”

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