Second string Arsenal slip to narrow loss in Athens

For the third year in four Arsenal found themselves in Athens in December playing against the Greek champions with the chance to top their Champions’ League group.

As qualification had already been secured Arsène Wenger decided to rest a majority of the starting eleven from the weekend defeat to Swansea, with the team being made up of mainly squad players or youngsters.

Chesney was in goal with a back four of Jenkinson, Squillacci, Vermaelen and Meade, possibly the shortest player Arsenal have had in recent years, recalling memories of another short left back, Juan.

The midfield was made up of Coquelin, Ramsey and Rosicky behind a forward line of Gervinho, Chamakh and Oxo, who seemed to tuck inside or play a little further back than the two departees for the African Cup of Nations next month.

Despite the Olympiakos stadium with a capacity of 32,000 being less than full the game got off to a noisy start with Arsenal starting calmly, of not confidently with Chamakh winning a fair number of headers and a pattern emerging of Gervinho dwelling on the ball for too long and slowing many attacking moves. That being said, a Gervinho through ball for Chamakh early on nearly led to a shot, as did a pass from Coquelin that found our resident hookah smoker just offside after he was also involved in some defensive headers.

While the Moroccan seemed to be working hard however his lack of sharpness showed with another through ball being wasted due to a heavy touch when he almost beat the Greeks keeper, Roy Carroll, to the ball.

The first good chance for arsenal found Ramsey running onto a Chamakh pull back and then fluffing his shot rather tamely. As ever Ramsey was always showing for the ball even though some of his passes weren’t coming off and was energetic throughout.

After Arsenal’s first period of possession and attacking threat the Greeks were probing our right flank as Abdoum and Torosidis were combining well to set up scoring opportunities, while our left side was being fairly well looked after by the full debutante Meade.

And as well the centre back pairing of Vermaelen and Squillacci seemed to be working quite well, with the skipper in better form than of later with many vigorous clearing headers.

As is typical with football when one side starts to dominate they concede a goal on the counter as was the case here. Despite Gervinho constantly frustrating with making so many wrong choices in attack he cut the ball back for Tomáš Rosický onto and place into the net, 1 nil to Arsenal on 38 minutes.

rosicky scores

With Schalke only drawing at that stage it looked like the unlikely scenario of Arsenal topping the group was on at half time, when it remained 1 nil to the away side, despite a few more forward forays from the Torosidis/Abdoum axis in the last 5 minutes of the first half.

The second half started with Rosický being replaced by Arshavin, and a few early half chances for Arsenal to extend their lead with goal ward headers from Squillacci and Chamakh.

A Chamakh cross after another Arsenal counter attack was too high for Arshavin to do much about; the Russians ariel threat being virtually non-existent.

Olympiakos got more into the game as the half wore on and Coquelin found himself getting stretched to the extent he was given a yellow card for one lunging/grappling tackle too many on Abdoum, who was a menace.

Chamakh’s hard work almost paid off after he stole possession from an opposition midfielder and threaded a ball through to Arshavin who drew a good shot from Carroll.

Then a cross from the Olympiakos led to a headed shot on the Arsenal goal that appeared to come off the post but was called a corner, to the dismay of the furious Chesney, who was booked for his protestations. To rub the salt in the equaliser came from the resulting corner as a ball back into the danger area bounced off the chest of the unfortunate Ramsey into the path of Maniatis to bundle home, one one on 64 minutes.

Sensing a chance for victory Olympiakos brought on their star striker, Mitroglou, who soon worked some space in the area to curl home a snot that put the home side in front and complete a miserable turnaround as far as Arsenal were concerned.

Aside from another Arshavin run and shot and Oxo finding a second wind with some darting runs the home side held onto the ball and ran down the clock to record a win which, in terms of the final group table, meant nothing.

Charybdis1966

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215 Responses to Second string Arsenal slip to narrow loss in Athens

  1. Big Raddy says:

    Chary. Very enjoyable read with some erudite observations.

    You should write more posts.

  2. Reddawn says:

    I would like to come in on a positive note. I thought the pitch and line markings were excellent. The rest I leave up to you!

  3. Thanks Mr Randy, it was a bit of a candle lit, rush-job report but I’m just a bit lazy with ewriting posts nowadays, advancing decrepitude I think ha ha..

  4. Gooner In Exile says:

    Morning all, good solid report Chary on what was effectively a dead rubber. I know we could have come top but realistically what is our priority right now, coming top of a CL group in a competition the chances of winning are slim or trying to improve our league form.

    For me it’s the latter. So last night was an opportunity to look at other players to put them on the pitch and see what they can offer, to assess how badly we need to spend in January.

    Left back has been one area of concern hopefully not anymore as I thought Meade acquitted himself well. He is more a midfielder/winger but has recently been quoted on playing left back for Arsenal:

    “I don’t mind playing at left back, I am quite an attacking player and can get forward and also get back – I am quite good at defending as well.

    In the first team I don’t mind being a left back but if I went elsewhere I would probably see myself as a left midfielder.

    It seems to always happen here that they transform you. It is an Arsenal thing. The boss knows what he is doing, just look at Ashley Cole: he is the best left back in the world now. And obviously Kieran is also doing really well, so you can see why they have been moved back.”

    Rosicky looked good on his return, Coquelin coped well until he tired late on.

    Lets be honest we put our reserves/youth out against the Greek Champions first team and only lost 2-1 due to fatigue (IMHO).

    Ox’s form is working me, hopefully he can find his feet again soon as he is a good threat to have coming off the bench, although I think at the moment any youngsters coming into the struggling team will suffer. Arsene has a very difficult balancing act to complete.

  5. Max says:

    I didnt watched match but from yur report i can see there are many positive from the game… Gervinho is pathetic to watch he beats defender then ball away….. As we were already dis game was dead rubber lets wait for next PL game hope we will find some form now and rocisky is back now so we will hav more option…. All positives coming ahead….

  6. goonermichael says:

    I watched the match and at times we played better than the first team of late

  7. kelsey says:

    Thanks for a low key report Chary.

    I must be watching a different game to the majority on here.
    The only bright spark for me was 45 minutes by rosicky, Szsney looking more authoritive and shouting at his defence and Meade gave a good account of himself.

    All my other comments are made earlier this morning

    We will see if we can up the tempo against WBA

  8. kelsey says:

    Really GM
    how many real chances did we create ?

  9. goonermichael says:

    How many real chances have our first team created lately? I thought we were quicker going forward in the first half.

  10. Cheers GiE – as soon as the match finished I rattled off the report tout de suite so what I saw was very much based on first impressions.

    Kelsey, this was an odd sort of game for me as only a handful of first teamers who will start on Saturday played so it had little relevance to the important League matches coming up.

    Like GM, I did feel in patches we looked better, less inhibited and scared than we did last Saturday.

  11. kelsey says:

    We were qucker going forward GM in the first half mainly due to the inclusion of rosicky but that is not the same as real chances created.Sorry I will not be convinced about the overall performance.

  12. goonermichael says:

    Fair enough Kelsey. I didn’t see the swansea game .

  13. Gooner In Exile says:

    Kelsey, take Gervinho out of the equation, he was poor, but he was the man more often than not receiving the ball higher up the pitch, and running at the defence….he alone could have created more chances by taking better options…now the encouragement is that the ball was moved forward more quickly, that we didn’t have the player to make most of it is an aside. The instruction from Wenger is clearly there and the deeper players last night carried out the instruction more so than the first team have of late.

  14. Red Arse says:

    Just read the Mirror article, thanks DD.

    I do not really know Oliver Holt, but then I do not really know any of the journalists who ply their trade on the country’s newspapers, so I am puzzled as to why opprobrium has been heaped on him and his motives for writing the article.

    I don’t really care, either, but I have written on the subject of AW more often than I would prefer, both to defend his reputation and to highlight the loyalty of a decent man, to the players, to the Board/Owner and to the fans.

    The fans? Yes, them too. He could have taken the treasure chest offered to him by the biggest and wealthiest clubs in the world, on a number of occasions, but chose not to, because of that loyalty.

    He has given us the best footballing period of our lives, so far, and yet retained his integrity and belief in the club and the way he feels football should be played, and all the while has stoically borne the brunt of many ill considered and defamatory comments from lesser men.

    Of course we are entitled to express our concerns. Of course we are entitled to question the direction the club appears to be going in. Of course we are allowed to harbour feelings of mistrust with the assurances about the amount of monies purportedly made available to Arsene Wenger by the Board.

    What we do not have the right to do is to question the loyalty and common decency of the greatest manager this club has ever had.

    That reflects more on the shallowness of those who choose to so express themselves than on the man they are venting their ire upon.

    Oliver Holt? Who he? Shoot the messenger if you want, but the message he carried bears all the hallmarks of truth!

  15. chas says:

    Many thanks, chary.
    A fine and balanced summary of the match.

    This typo made me laugh as I’m currently suffering from a cold and blocked sinuses.
    “…Mitroglou, who soon worked some space in the area to curl home a snot…”

  16. chas says:

    I’d imagine Shakhtar v Juve is the match to watch this evening.

    I’ve got a feeling Shakhtar will win and the chavs sneak through as a consequence.
    (I thought I’d mention this in print because my predictions are usually totally wrong) :)

  17. slime says:

    Chas,

    If they are both smart enough then they may just pass the ball for 90 minutes and both go through!

  18. LB says:

    Reasons for Wenger’s team selection.

    Szeczney: needed more game time to improve his sharpness after his injury. Goal achieved.

    Jenkinson: with Sagna being first choice but more injury prone nowadays, this man needs to be reassured that he is wanted and is kept sharp. Goal achieved.

    Squillaci: we know he is simply playing out his contract, although if the the first three CBs all got gastric flu his experience would be needed. That said I am sure part of his inclusion is to see if we can find a buyer in January. Goal achieved.

    Vermaelen: our captain has re-found his spark and last night was to help get him back on track, I thought he gave a committed performance. Goal achieved.

    Jerande Meade: simply a great opportunity to blood a youngster. Goal achieved.

    Coquelin: needs pitch time to improve. Goal achieved.

    Rosicky: 45 minutes to improve his personal fitness and remind us what we have missed and how there is still hope. Goal achieved.

    Ramsey: an opportunity for him to play in an un-pressured game. Goal achieved.

    Gervinho: we can only hope that the more he plays the more he will improve if that is the case then goal achieved.

    Chamakh: needs game time as well as a blatant advert that he is for sale. Goal achieved.

    The Ox: needs games. Goal achieved.

    Arshavin: advert to let people know he is here and he is for sale. Goal achieved.

    So all in all I reckon Wenger feels he got a lot out of last night but hopefully for us he realises that the squad is very light and if he has then it is Goal achieved.

  19. RockyLives says:

    Nice one Chary

    I agree with GM’s typically pithy comment at 10.42

    That GM… Always taking the pith :)

  20. Gooner In Exile says:

  21. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Thanks vey much Chary.
    I agree with whoever said you ought to write more match reports.
    All of them maybe? :-)

  22. Gooner In Exile says:

    RA …. You will not surprised to hear me say “hear hear”

  23. @Chas 11.56 Ha ha, the perils of proof reading at speed. Mdi89 – I’m too lazeeeee to post much in the way of posts. As lazy as my favourite current Arsenal player, The Arsh.

  24. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Well, I consider my opinion will be unique among regulars as I couldn’t be bothered to watch.
    As Tuesday approached, the inevitable levels of anticipation grew. Then, match day itself…hooray. Tick tock. With a minute to go, I published my Come on you Gunnnnners… then I just thought… No.
    I knew what kind of football would be on display, and that it was meaningless for both sides. I looked at our team and thought, yip, I know what you, you and you can do. What I want from the 2ndXI is to see the starts of the future, not the “not good enough for today”.
    A couple of season’s ago, I made to trip to the League Cup game against Shrewsbury, specifically to watch The Ox debut.
    I dined out on the excitment from that trip for more than a year.
    All I see now is the slow death of the most exciting young talent I have ever seen at Arsenal.
    Still looking forward to WBA :-)

  25. kelsey says:

    Well at least i watched 75 minutes Micky, should have chosen your option :)

  26. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Howdee RA,
    I read your interesting comment at 11:50.
    Can I ask, have you read Nassim Taleb’s Black Swan, and although only out for a week or so, Antifragile?

  27. Red Arse says:

    Micky,

    I am familiar with the Black Swan theory expostulated in the book of that name.

    I surmise from your question that you have too — so maybe we can avoid being turkeys together, which at this time of year is probably just as well. :lol:

    It was bought for me as a prezzie, 4 or 5 years ago, and I loved it! :D

  28. Red Arse says:

    GIE,

    You are correct, I am not surprised that you agree with the comment I made @ 11:55. :P

  29. chas says:

    RA,
    I presume some of your 11:55 was aimed at me as it was me who said I couldn’t stand that slimy toad Ollie Holt.
    (I can’t really stand any of the football journos to be honest. I’d much rather read a blog)

    I was wondering where the bit about questioning Arsene’s loyalty and common decency came from? No-one on here surely?

  30. chas says:

    slime,
    Shakhtar are already through. They must draw or win to stay top of the group. Lose to Juve and they finish second.

    Juve, on the other hand, are through with a draw but only in second place. A win would put them top.

    It’s the coming first or second in the group which might make it a competitive match. Besides Shakhtar winning is the only result which helps the chavs, so that’s what I expect will happen.
    I wonder if Abramovich will attend games if they only qualify for the Europa?

  31. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Chas/RA,
    Funnily enough, my asking RA about Taleb was prompted by his “loyalty” line.
    Given that RA has yet to read Antifragile yet (he will :-) ), then me talking about how I think Arsene has become Fragile is utterly meaningless.
    So this comment was a waste of everyone’s time ROLF
    I’ll potter off back to work :-(

  32. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Thanks for the report chary. Didnt get to see the game last night. I was in the back seat of my car hiding from brutish brother in law.

    Chas, i agree with you about Holt. He looks like he has just emerged from a slimey cocoon with an expression of smugness that says i will eat what i want.

  33. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Chas,
    I wonder whether Abramovich might attend the Shakhtar-Juve game along with some short haired persuasive gentleman in dark glasses?

  34. Red Arse says:

    Chas,

    When I read newspapers, and pop from site to site, I pick up bits and pieces, some of interest, some not so much.

    I do not always recall who said what or where I read something.

    This is not the first time I have been asked whether, or not, I was referring to a particular person or site. The answer is much the same.

    If I have something to say on a particular topic I will say it.

    Nothing I have ever said has been unique or original, and I have never read one from any other blogger which has been either.

    That’s a long winded way of saying that I comment on topics that interest me, regardless of who said what.

    If you cannot stand Holt, that’s fine, I already said I do not know him so I could not disagree with you.
    So, no, Chas, you were not at the forefront of my mind when I wrote the comment, and neither was it a rebuke to anyone on AA in particular.

    As with much of my writing it was a generalized point positing a view agreed by some other bloggers and not by others. Each to his own.

    Did I offend you?

  35. You’re welcome Monsieur Syrup, bizarrely enough my brother in law hides from his family by sitting in the driver seat of his car on the drive way for a couple of hours when he comes home. He can’t stand having to see the wife/kids for too long of an evening…the sap !

  36. MickyDidIt89 says:

    RA
    “Nothing I have ever said has been unique or original”
    You mean you don’t make up those long words :-)

  37. chas says:

    Of course you didn’t offend me, RA. :)

    I just wondered how you arrived at suggesting no-one has the right to question Arsene’s loyalty and common decency from a discussion about an article saying that Arsene was taking the hits for the board’s decisions, that’s all.

    You’ve explained it in that you sometimes talk here about comments made on completely different blogs.

  38. Red Arse says:

    Micky,

    From the teeniest weeniest lickle word, to the biggest, baddest long ‘un that I have ever used, I have to admit that I have never ever invented a new word and I am full of chagrin about that!

    It’s a real Snorgelhump!! Oh, wait, maybe that’s ………..

  39. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    chary, hahaha, hides form his wfe and kids??

    My excuse is that the Brother in Law wanted to beat me up. Ok, i did tell him on the phone that i was going to batter him so bad that he would end up looking like Steve Archibald, but this just made him madder.

    So when he turned up i hid in the car. hahahaha

  40. I kid you not Mr Syrup, he hides until the kids have gone to bed so he doesn’t have to deal with them. Avoiding the wife is just an added bonus of sitting in his car before he goes inside; I think she is more likely to beat him up, and she looks more like Steve Archibald than he does !

  41. Red Arse says:

    Chas,

    I am relieved that you were not offended. :-)

    Most people on here skitter from blog to blog to get a sense of what’s going down elsewhere, and it soon becomes obvious that on any given site there is a polarity of opinion between bloggers, even on AA, (or is that just me) and there is an even more acutely obvious polarity between the sites themselves.

    I think you will agree that there is something for everyone — which is one of the essentials for making blogging interesting, or else what would be the point?
    [And, of course, there are the vids, the humour, Shakespeare, poetry, and Micky's two fine porkers that are no doubt trembling as Xmas approaches. Chops away!] :D

  42. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    chary hahahahahaha. Brilliant.

  43. Red Arse says:

    Terry,

    You do realize that Glic told him where you blog?

    Your days are numbered, and your telescope must be wilting! :lol:

  44. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    hahahahaha, Redders i was thinking of posting as “NOT TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT”, but i guess its too late now. Oh well. i hope my car heaters hold out tonight. hahahaha

  45. MickyDidIt89 says:

    RA,
    The word is “Schnorgelhumpen” and it was invented by Helga, a very large breasted alcholic Bavarian waitress.

  46. MickyDidIt89 says:

    And no, she can’t spell “alcoholic” either because she’s always ripped to the tits.

  47. chas says:

    chary,
    Your brother-in-law?
    Does that mean your sister looks like Steve Archibald. :)

  48. chas says:

    Micky,
    “ripped to the tits” :)
    I was trying to find the origin of the phrase ‘off your tits’ the other day, without much success.

    • No Chas, the brother in laws wife is the ex spud player look-a-likey, she’s from Derby, they look weird there lol….
  49. chas says:

    Ah, brother-in-law as in wife’s brother.
    The East Midlands is full of inbreds.
    It’s why I feel so at home. :)

  50. chas says:

    Is that html a mix of bold and blockquote?

  51. Lol Chas, I forgot you were up there; I don’t know what I did to get my last comment to look like that; Dam WordPress hates me.

  52. For you metalhead Philistines. This is real music

  53. They’re playing in Poznan next year. Anyone fancy going?

  54. To be correct GM you should have said “metalhead philistine” as it would only refer to me; everyone else here is into wimp music. :)

  55. You need re-educating

  56. Too late for that GM, the lure of the distorted power chord is irresistably seductive. \m/ \m/

  57. MickyDidIt89 says:

    GM
    I saw them in about ’81 and can confidently say it was the only boring two hour period of my life between the ages of 15 and 30.

  58. Big Raddy says:

    Chary I think you are mistaken. There are a few on here that love a power chord and the smell of patchouli

  59. Big Raddy says:

    I agree. Poor man’s Pet Shop Boys

  60. Ssshhh Big Daddy, GM hates rockers…

  61. Red Arse says:

    OK. I am a philistine.

    Never heard of Kraftwerk, and hate ear splitting heavy metal band screeching.

    The vids were OK, GM, thank you, and they were strangely hypnotic, but I cannot overcome my concern at being sung to by a man who sounds like The Terminator!

    In my youth to impress females who were into heavy metal, (what else) I went to a number of gigs, and could not believe how deafeningly loud the ‘music’ was played.

    When you are older Raddy/CharyB you will be deaf ……………. I said, YOU WILL BE DEAF!

    Don’t suppose any of you could hear that!! :P

  62. We had this conversation on LG about 3 years ago Micky :)

  63. I don’t hate anyone

  64. But I am older Redders, but still not deaf.

    And who crossed out my earlier comment ??

  65. I saw the sensational Alex Harvey band once :)

  66. I was going to write a list but I’d be here all day and I have to hoover and clean the bathroom

  67. Big Raddy says:

    I hate Harry Redkanpp and Teddy Sheringham and Alan Sugar and

  68. chas says:

    Ashley Cole, John Terry and Fat Fwank.

  69. Red Arse says:

    Micky, you are a heartbreaker!
    Just when I thought I had invented a new word, at last, you bring my dreams tumbling down.

    The minute you mentioned Helga, it all came back to me, her whip, her tree trunk thighs, her glistening bipeds, and her screaming “Schnorgelhumpen” while she climaxed singing “Die Fledermaus”!

    Oh such schadenfreude joy!!

    Not my word after all! :-(

  70. Red Arse says:

    And Pulis, and Moanhio

  71. Red Arse says:

    Who is Harry Redkanpp? Any relation to our ‘Arry? :lol:

  72. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Now why is that I knew full well you had experienced The Helga?

  73. Big Raddy says:

    and smart-arse two metre tall accountants :-)

  74. chas says:

    Haha, BR.

  75. chas says:

    ‘glistening bipeds’ got me right interested for a moment.

  76. Red Arse says:

    Chas,

    She had a foot fad, well foots fad. Hers, not mine — she said Micky’s foots were the best because they were so flexible and could reach every nook and cranny!

  77. Big Raddy says:

    Better than cleaning the bathroom…

  78. Red Arse says:

    Raddy,

    A very big thank you for the Pete/Dud vids. I just could not stop laughing.Their comedy is like nothing I have ever seen anywhere else. Love it!!

    (Just between ourselves — I have never seen Chas, but please tell me he looks like Dud!!) :P

  79. Sheep Hagger says:

    Afternoon lads .
    Kraftwerk were a good 80s band never seen them live but the best band I seen live we’re
    The Clash I’m giving my age away now

  80. Hi all

    Thank you chary for an excellent account of what happened last night in Greece. I was thrilled to be thrilled for an hour or so while we were in the lead although I always expected Olympiakos to score.

    The worrying thing for me is would we have been able to get a result if we needed one, to get out of the group? Luckily we didn’t and so we’ll have to wait for another year to have that problem.

  81. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Sheep
    You may be the only person who has seen The Clash more than me!
    Strangely, despite his odd thing about Kraftwerk, GM is a Clash Man!

  82. kelsey says:

    I preferred the 2 hour documentary on The hollies last night. Alan Clarke was unrecognisable but Graham Nash hasn’t changed much.

  83. ………. oh, and we seem to need a post for tomorrow ……….. :oops:

  84. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Kelsey,
    I’ve just copied a Cello Concerto onto my laptop :-)

  85. GunnerN5 says:

    Rasp/Peaches

    Check Arsenal nuts

  86. GunnerN5 says:

    Must be some sort of telepathy going on here…………..

  87. MickyDidIt89 says:

    I can’t hear you Peaches, because I’ve got my expensive headphones on, which are plugged into my Bang and Olfsen sound powered laptop :-)

  88. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Olufsen, sorry Bang and

  89. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Three cheers for GN5.
    Headphones off :-)

  90. barumgooner says:

    Nice write up Chary, Pretty much as I saw it. Positives….. TV played well which is a bit of a rarity at the moment, TR looked bright and Meade had a good night Negatives…….Gervinho is looking more and more like a headless chicken and AW is looking less and less able to influence a game.

  91. GunnerN5 says:

    Micky,

    Most people will be bored stiff, it’s all stats and assumptions.

  92. chas says:

    Bang and ROLFsen

  93. Thank you GN5 :)

    Micky :D

  94. Big Raddy says:

    I know this is a bizarre suggestion but why not bring Nik B back to Arsenal. We are paying most of his wages and he + Joel Campbell are already on the books. Why go out and buy a striker because of the ANC in Jan?

  95. GunnerN5 says:

    BR,

    You’re right that’s quite bizarre.

    A few day’s back I asked why we don’t simply write off the salaries of the players who are not a fit. In Canadian businesses you can write off or write down items that are no longer an asset, this will reduce profits and therefore reduce taxes so a company does not bear the full loss. I wondered if that was applicable in the UK?

  96. chas says:

    I’ve just spoken to my older bro on the phone and there is one seat available next to him in row 1 North Bank Upper Corner for the West Brom game on Saturday. £33.50 as it’s a category C game.

  97. Sheep Hagger says:

    Magic chas just watched the white riot u posted funny as f@@k

  98. Big Raddy says:

    GN5 When I lived in the UK a write down was definitely possible

  99. Sheep Hagger says:

    Do we hope chelski go out tonight ?

  100. It might not be good for our coefficient but yes of course we do :)

  101. MickyDidIt89 says:

    The day we start worrying about coebloodyfficients and not seeing the Chavs booted out of Europe will be a sad day

  102. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Excellent Clash clips and how can you go wrong with Pete and Dud.

  103. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Bugger me, just seen the time. Over and out.

  104. LB says:

    Nikki Pink Boots is not a bad call.

  105. Sheep Hagger says:

    How do I get one of them avatars .
    I want a sheep one ,Help plz
    SH

  106. Sheep – you can do it through wordpress.com or gravatar.com. You open an account and upload a pic of your choice, it responds to your email address so if you don’t want the world to know you as ‘Sheep’ it’s probably best to use wordpress.

    I can do it for you if you’re not very technical, let me know and I’ll email you.

  107. LB – I heard that as Nikki was on a season long loan he couldn’t be recalled …….. but I don’t remember where I heard it so it might just be rubbish.

  108. Gooner In Exile says:

    GN5 we have written off assets this last financial year,people assumed Park.

    But here’s the thing it’ll still cost us financially whether we pay it now or over the next few years and from a cash flow point of view (and a FFP one) it’s probably better to spread the write down. The players have a contract for three years, we can choose to pay up contract and release them, but it wouldn’t make much financial sense. In my opinion.

  109. Sheep Hagger says:

    Cheers peaches can u sort it for me as I’m new here .
    I don’t mind being known as sheep ,I’ll leave it 2 u .
    Thanks sheep.
    Ps Celtic 2-1 up

  110. Sheep Hagger says:

    Sheep hagger is my x box live name .
    I play some live games on my x box I’m only 14

  111. I’ll email you tomorrow and hopefully you’ll be a sheep by evening :)

  112. Brigham says:

    By the way, Kraftwerk started off in the 70’s, just thought I would say.

  113. Brigham says:

    Oh, Pete and Dud were quality and my fav is still Squatter and the Ant, brilliant.

  114. Sheep Hagger says:

    Ok cheers that was a wind up about me being 14 thanks
    I used to post on here as Andi R .
    Any one else here go on x box live I play tiger woods and f1 online .

  115. Sheep Hagger says:

    Ur right on kraftwork good shout

  116. Sheep Hagger says:

    Watching the Celtic game on sky and as Celtic go off with a win they are playing
    London calling odd them jocks but a classic Clash track

  117. Actually, I’ve just emailed you Sheep ………..

  118. Sheep Hagger says:

    How come u got my e mail address lol

  119. Shame about the chavs lol

  120. Sheep Hagger says:

    One day I’m going to post a message in my 1st launauge which is welsh that will confuse all u aa peeps.

  121. Because I do the admin ……. and I know everything ;)

  122. Sheep Hagger says:

    Ok

  123. chas says:

    Shame about the chavs. :)

    Here’s my suggestion for sheep’s picture.

    http://bit.ly/VELnif

  124. Sheep Hagger says:

    My wife knows everything u related to her

  125. chas says:

    Snaperooni

  126. Sheep Hagger says:

    Lol love it that’s me the old sheep put that on if u can peaches

  127. slime says:

    Barca, Bayern, Juve, PSG, Malaga, Dortmund.

    I would fancy us giving a good game to PSG, Malaga or Juve. The others, not so much!

  128. Sheep Hagger says:

    That sheep better looking than me

  129. chas says:

    Me too

  130. Sheep Hagger says:

    My son is named after a arsenal player
    Go on guess

  131. Okey dokey, I’ll do my best. Don’t forget to follow the instructions in my email ……

  132. slime says:

    Haggerbayor?

  133. goonermichael says:

    Ashley?

  134. chas says:

    peaches,
    You can always resize it and crop it in paint.
    Or I could.

  135. chas says:

    Haggerbayor. hahahaha.

  136. Tony, David, Lee, Martin, Steve, Ray, Charlie ……..

  137. goonermichael says:

    Manu Celtic next round then

  138. slime says:

    Please tell me he’s called Woijcech!

  139. Sheep Hagger says:

    Waits
    Arsenal 22/1 win cl

  140. Sheep Hagger says:

    Do it for me I’m welsh no one got my sons name yet

  141. slime says:

    I’ve got it!

    It’s F-lamb-mini!

    That works on so many levels….!

  142. Sheep Hagger says:

    Peaches closest with name

  143. If it’s Malaga we definitely have to have an overseas outing and kelsey can meet us for breakfast :)

  144. chas says:

    Nelson.

  145. Sheep Hagger says:

    Clue he’s jock

  146. Sheep Hagger says:

    Above

  147. chas says:

    George.

  148. kelsey says:

    George or Eboue

  149. Sheep Hagger says:

    Chelski out and shitty .
    We still in life could be worse we could be rangers fanz

  150. Must’ve missed one ……….

    Anyway, the next round is weeks away, we’ll be much stronger by then lol

  151. Frank Frank Frank …………………

  152. goonermichael says:

    Arsene

  153. chas says:

    Baaaaacary

  154. goonermichael says:

    Nwanku

  155. chas says:

    Gotta be Frank

  156. You’re always frank chas :)

  157. Sheep Hagger says:

    47 e mails calm down ffs

  158. Sheep Hagger says:

    No do u want a clue sons name

  159. chas says:

    Eddie or Willie

  160. Sheep Hagger says:

    Scottish played for arse in the 80 he was a bit flash

  161. chas says:

    peaches said Charlie

  162. Sheep Hagger says:

    She close with Charlie

  163. slime says:

    Final answer:

    Yossi…?

  164. Sheep Hagger says:

    Red face on sky news af booooooo
    Af

  165. Sheep Hagger says:

    Yossi he a Jew not a jock

  166. Sheep Hagger says:

    Ok last clue he works for sky sp news

  167. chas says:

    Nicholas – Boom

  168. Sheep Hagger says:

    I’ll check this in the morning see if any one got it right.
    Peaches and chas sort the sheep pic out tomorrow
    Ta for u help
    Much love SH

  169. Sheep Hagger says:

    Got it chas she would not let me Charlie

  170. Sheep Hagger says:

    So I called him Nicholas

  171. Sheep Hagger says:

    Bye SH
    Ps franki detorrii. Cheat
    Soz can’t spell that I’m welsh

  172. Rasp says:

    I’ve just seen it, what a bad piece of PR that is …. don’t the club see how poor we will look. Last year it was a fairytale, this year just desperate :(

  173. slime says:

    Huntelaar and Llorente both big name free transfers at the end of the season and I can see one of them ending up at the Emirates. Henry would be an ideal stop-gap to ease the loss of Gerv to ACN.

    Not an exciting signing but I can see why Wenger would do it.

  174. RockyLives says:

    I was hoping to put a Post in drafts today for tomorrow but didn’t get time today because of some unexpected work issues.

    I know it’s late but this is a plea for anyone who might have an idea to pop something in the bank for tomorrow to help out Rasp and Peaches.

    (and spare my :oops: )

  175. slime says:

    Anyone think Hooper could be a good signing?

    Scores regularly for Celtic and has been on the brink of an England call up. Also, he’s not the same type as Giroud so would give us variation and also wouldn’t make Giroud think he has been replaced.

  176. weedonald says:

    I enjoyed watching our annual pre-Xmas exhibition match against Greek opposition where we give our youth and bench-warmers a run, and don’t give a damn about the result.
    What really impressed me was Meade’s confidence and skill, for a small player he is the real thing! Rosicky showed us what a skillful midfielder can do…he reminds me of Cazorla.
    Gervinho seems completely clueless once he gets the ball but he does have pace and can beat anyone, his end product is pretty feeble though. Rambo tries so hard but is so unlucky and seems disjointed and distracted half the time.
    Squillaci had a decent game and he is good in the air but he clearly isn’t up to AFC standards. The Ox was invisible for a lot of the game like Arshavin but when he does pop up it is always a potentially threatening move. Jenkinson is still a diamond in the rough but every game polishes him more and more. Szcesny has work to do on those shots coming from outside the penalty area but he is very strong in a one-on-one in almost every case.
    Chamakh tried so hard but was very rusty and his timing was off, leaving us with, yet again, a dearth of attacking options. Vermaelen appears to be regaining his earlier form and seems to be less aggressive when defending. Coquelin is another diamond in the rough but is too aggressive for my tastes…he was lucky to finish the match.
    All in all, it was an interesting game, like a pre-season run-out where Wenger tries various youth and senior combinations to get a feel of who he can rely on and who needs more exposure to real Football….and who is back from injury and reliable. When I realize that he didn’t use all his bench options, and left players like Eisfeld and Gnarby at home, then I feel a great deal better about the Club’s future. Now if he can only get the rest of the first team playing like Rosicky, our remaining games will be a joy to watch.

  177. Adrian says:

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2243691/Bacary-Sagna-heading-Arsenal-exit-France-right-feels-disrespected-new-offer.html?ito=feeds-newsxml

    Whoopee dee doo, here we go again. And we thought the naming rights money will have a big impact on the way the club is run, whats the point when you keep letting seasoned players leave? I’m sure most of us agree that while Jenkinson has potential to be a great RB atm Sagna is still much better to him due to one thing – experience. Everyone here agrees he’s one of the most consistent players for Arsenal and as much as I like Jenkinson I don’t think he’s ready to rake over Sagna for another few years at least. To me he’s arguably the best RB in the epl. I’m sure that Jenks will benefit more from being Safna’s understudy for a few more seasons. Is it really that bad to have 2 decent players in one position for rotation purposes or when the our worst enemy injury starts to hit us? If players keep getting sold like this we’ll never have a proper, bedded in team and naturally our performances will decline. How many more years do we have to listen to us being a “team in transition”?

  178. Big Raddy says:

    Adrian.

    Yes, Bacary is a superb RB and one of the best in the PL, BUT

    He is almost 30 (Feb), has had two broken legs, is on a very decent wage, plus he will want a minimum 3 year contract. I can’t see AFC offering him anything other than a rolling one year deal with a slightly improved wage.

    If his advisers refuse then what can Arsenal do? Sagna has little sales value due to his age but could earn good money elsewhere (USA/Japan/ etc).

    Sad as it is I can see him leaving.

  179. Adrian says:

    Jenkinson’s injury record isn’t exactly squeaky clean too, he has some issues with his back. The last time his back got injured he was out for around 3 months if I recall correctly. Touchwood if he gets injured again, but then who do we have to stand in for him if he ever gets another lenghty injury? :(

  180. Adrian says:

    Plus 29 atm isn’t exactly old for a RB, I’d say he still have another 3 years of top flight football in him minimum. Look at Ashley Cole who is already 32 and Philip Lahm who is 29, both arguably among the best in their position in Europe and I’m sure most people would agree that Lahm can still continue being the player he is for the next couple of years.

  181. Gooner In Exile says:

    Players at the end of their careers look for one last pay day, that is what Sagna is doing. PSG seems nailed on.

    He is in the same position as RvP last year. Andif we don’t make CL I expect him to go for definite.

    Sagna is undoubtedly Mr Consistent and his pace has often amazed me, defendive recovery and attacking the flank making balls I thought were going out of touch. Is it still there? Will it still be there in a season and a half when his current contract expires?

  182. Jung says:

    Why shouldn’t Sagna move?

    He joined in 2007.

    Was offered an additional 2 years on his existing contract in 2008 after a great first season taking him up to 2014.

    At the end of the season will have been with the club 6 years.
    312 weeks at £60k a week = £18,720,000.

    That’s getting on for 19 million pounds gross, so maybe only a paltry £9 million take home basic.

    He’s nearly 30, what has he won? Sweet FA.

    Why shouldn’t Sagna move?

  183. chas says:

    Morning, All.

    Quiet here this morning. Where’s Sir DidIt and the Kelse?

    Are we all hoping the West Brom goalkeeper can win us some Champions League Football on Saturday? :)

  184. Rasp says:

    Morning all,

    Does anyone know (think they know) how much Sagna has been offered, and for how long?

  185. LB says:

    We all know the drill by now, this was so predictable that I seem to recall that we debated the order in which we expected players to leave.

    Walcott, Sagna and then I added Ramsey.

  186. chas says:

    Rasp,
    I doubt the Mail even know (the story seems to have originated from them).
    They’re suggesting a 1 year extension but with no amount specified.
    Does that imply on the same money?
    I’d love to know where they get their ‘info’ from.

  187. chas says:

    He’s not in the calendar, after all.

  188. LB says:

    The thing I want to know is at what point do we stop getting angry about it and except that players around thirty will natuarlly want as long a contract as possible, usually a length that we cannot offer so if that is the case when are we allowed to just be pleased that we got to watch them play in Red and White.

    Sagna is going to leave I am glad that he was an Arsenal player.

  189. Rasp says:

    Morning chas & LB,

    I think there is a bigger picture. We need to step up to the next level as a club in the next two years. We should be able to use our considerable resources to put us at a significant advantage compared to all other clubs except manu, chavs and city.

    We do not need to go over past wage structures and overpaying ‘deadwood’ (hate that), but we could ask the question – do we have to wait for the contracts of the players we can’t sell to expire (most in the next 2 years) before we start restructuring our pay to come inline with player’s expectations?

  190. chas says:

    Rasp,
    Are you suggesting we offer Bacary a 3 year contract on more money?
    If so, how much more?
    He’ll be 31 at the end of his current contract. Do we need to start offering players in their 30s longer contracts?
    I wonder what Giggs and Scholes are on.

  191. chas says:

    I doubt we could offer what he could get elsewhere, as GIE said.
    Why would he want to stay anyway. All his mates have gone.

  192. Rasp says:

    Hi chas, Sagna is certainly worth a 3 year contract. A player of his ability who is showing no signs of diminished performance due to age is someone we should try to keep. If he chooses to go then we can’t stop him. I can’t comment on what we should offer him as I don’t know what other players are paid, but in the modern game a player of his ability probably expects circa £90k a week

  193. LB says:

    I agree that SB is worth a three year contract and that he is probably worth 90k a week, the problem seems to be that so will PSG, only I suspect they will think he is worth 100k plus per week.

  194. Rasp says:

    OK LB, if we’re outbid, we’re outbid :(

  195. Morning all

    New Post …………………..

  196. chas says:

    As it is, we’re offering him a 1 year contract extension (according to the Daily Rail) on ten bob a week. Haha.

  197. Rasp says:

    What a shame we’ll never know the truth chas

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