Can I have some more, please. Cardiff again.

A long night’s partying means that the opportunity of lying supine on the couch and enjoying an afternoon’s football is very attractive, an Arsenal victory would make it doubly so. Given the condition of the man writing this post it will be short and to the point …

What stands between us and 3 points? A host of injuries, a stubborn Cardiff side and  ….. well, nothing really, we should beat a managerless team who are in disarray. We beat Cardiff just a few weeks ago with another superb display from Ramsey but little can be predicted as Cardiff will be playing a very different Arsenal.

I watched the recent Cardiff vs Sunderland game and Cardiff for most of the game were strong and well-organised; expect the same today.

A domestic dialogue from earlier this morning …..

“BR: I am really interested in seeing our B team

Mrs BR: Oh, come on Big Raddy, you know that isn’t strictly true – a B team doesn’t have BFG etc in it.

BR: You don’t understand, Ozil, Ramsey, and a host of others are crocked.

Mrs. BR: Doesn’t that give the excellent squad members a chance to shine? You may even see that little fellow Gnabry whom you speak of so often. And  I will have a chance to see my mad countryman Big Nik start a game.

BR: Exactly, doesn’t fill me with confidence. Hopefully Podolski will score a brace and Santi will return to scoring ways.

Mrs BR. See, you are already feeling more confident as our “B Team” is still made up of 11 internationals who have easily enough talent and experience to beat a team likely to be relegated.

BR: You are right as always , my Dearest.”

My Team (assuming the injury rumours are true):

arse v cardiff

The bench should be interesting!!

2013 was an excellent year in the development of this team, in particular it was a good year for Mr Wenger who once again has shown himself to be a manager of the very highest order. Hard to believe that he has worked as AFC manager for longer than all the other PL managers have managed their teams added together. We have been blessed.

It was another trophy-less year (though in any just world there would be a trophy for the  team which wins the PL in the calendar year :-)  ) and many will say we have once again not achieved anything solid, but I beg to differ, we have seen some outstanding football, lots of goals, the founding of an excellent defence and the development of real world class talents; much is made of Ramsey’s improvement but what of Cazorla, Gibbs, Koscielny and BFG?

My personal year highlight has been sharing many hours with my friends on Arsenal Arsenal. Thank you all (except the troll)

Happy New Year

written by Big Raddy

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203 Responses to Can I have some more, please. Cardiff again.

  1. Gööner In Exile says:

    Raddy fine work, looking at that Arsenal A/B team then ask if any Cardiff players can get in the team? If the answer is no then we should win. Simples.

  2. Norfolk Gooner says:

    Good morning AAers, a Happy New Year to you all and a successful one to the Glorious Gunners.

    This is entirely off topic, for which I apologise, but I thought it might be of interest.

    After the Arsenal/Chelsea game, otherwise known as the Mike Dean refereeing fiasco, I contacted the Premier League to ask for their take on the situation.

    My query:- You publicise on this website the PGMOL, presumably you have some input to that organisation and are able to question the quality and accuracy of the decisions made by the referees officiating at matches in the Premiership. I am sure that you also evaluate each referee’s performance, I would be interested to know what you thought of Mike Deans efforts at the Arsenal Vs Chelsea match yesterday evening.

    The reply:- Thank you for your email.

    As you may be aware we receive numerous queries referring to individual referees’ decisions and, indeed, in relation to their overall performance. We are not able to comment on specific incidents such as those you raise. This is partly because it is only the referee who can answer questions about particular decisions, and also because of the high level of correspondence we receive. We understand that it can be perplexing when there appear to be inconsistencies amongst the officials’ decisions. Each official will have his own interpretation of an incident of course and no two incidents are ever identical. Even where fouls look similar, the speed of the players may be different, and the referee may be in a different position with a very different viewing angle. However, Professional Game Match Officials (PGMO: the body which employs all the referees) work hard to try and ensure a consistent approach where possible.

    We regularly report back to Professional Games Match Officials to ensure they are fully aware of all the feedback we receive. The performances of the Select Group Referees are reviewed with each referee in detail in a number of different ways, with a view to improving their performance from week to week. Contrary to popular opinion, referees are under intense scrutiny from within the game and are appropriately criticised if it is felt that an incorrect decision has been made.

    A referee’s technical performance in a match is assessed by the Independent Assessor and their overall handling of the match is reported on by an Independent Match Delegate, who is often a former player, manager or coach. These reports focus on the referee’s control of the match, the way that he deals with key incidents as well as the way he communicates his decisions. These reports are shared with the referees on both a formal and informal basis.

    Whilst I cannot comment on the individual incidents you refer to, I hope the above helps to clarify how we are constantly trying to improve and maintain standards of refereeing. We work hard to maintain high standards of behaviour across the game.

    Thank you for taking the time to contact us. We do appreciate the feedback we receive and are grateful for you taking the time to write to us.

    Sorry once again for going off topic,

  3. Norfolk Gooner says:

    I don’t think we have to worry too much about the missing players, we have a pretty strong squad which should be able to cope with Cardiff.

    The thing that matters is the players attitude, we must be “up for it” every game from now until the end of the season is a “must win”.

    Play with intensity, play with pace, play with belief and we will win.

  4. kelsey says:

    Nice post Radddy.

    My only concern would be Jenkinson at RB so I hope Sagna is fit. I like young Carl but the gulf between him and Sagna is enormous, most probably more than any other position where we could double up.

    I wonder what colour shirts Cardiff will wear surely not blue possibly tan :)

  5. Big Raddy says:

    NG. Interesting reply from the PL.

    Do you think it is possible for a club to refuse the referee offered for a game?

    We read that MU ban certain refs but I have never seen real evidence. If so, it would make much sense for AFC to refuse Dean entrance into the Emirates unless he is paying for his ticket.

  6. Big Raddy says:

    kelsey. I agree but Carl needs pitch time if he is to fulfil his obvious potential. We will know whether AW rates him soon enough,if he signs a right back in the TW.

    Thinking of which ….. it is rumour time!! I love it when we are linked with every player whose agent is looking for a lucrative move.

    Does anyone think we will sign anyone?

  7. kelsey says:

    Balotelli at 25 million…no chance.Too hot to handle.

    In a perfect scenario I would like to see us get real competition for our Pole in Goal, a clinical striker and a beast like Viera, but I suppose it’s wishful thinking.

    Most probably get a loan signing at best therefore anything else would be a bonus

  8. Rasp says:

    Morning Raddy, HNY again to all. I know some pundits are predicting a goalfest today but I think it will be a tight game. Cardiff really impressed me when they beat Swansea. They will come with the objective of not losing, and will be obdurate and determined. and with Fraizer Campbell they can hit you on the break.

    My prediction is a cagey game, nil nil at half time with us scoring early in the 2nd and clinching it with a late 2nd …. 2 nil to the Arsenal :)

  9. LB says:

    What a good post.

    I don’t know how you keep coming up with the ideas.

    After reading it I have changed my mind from expecting a cushy three points to expecting a stubborn Cardiff.

  10. Chas says:

    Thanks, BR.
    As if Mrs BR could ever be wrong. :)

    Wet old journey down. Tight game expected.
    Apparently the pitch has automatic suckers and blowers built in to add/ subtract water. So should be another good playing surface.

  11. Big Raddy says:

    chas. Brilliant that the groundsman would take such care with their pitch.

    Wish I was going to the Tavern for a hair of the dog.

    Deeply envious.

  12. 26may1989 says:

    Happy New Year, everyone. Hope you all had an enjoyable evening with friends and family. I wish you all the best for 2014, especially re mid May…….

    Thanks for the PM – I’m liking the sound of Mrs BR, we should hear more of her thoughts.

    Here is my suggested line-up for today:

    Szczesny

    Sagna, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Monreal

    Arteta, Wilshere

    Walcott, Cazorla, Podolski

    Bendtner

    Subs: Fabianski, Vermaelen, Jenkinson, Flamini, Rosicky, Gnabry, Ryo

    But I guess there’s a healthy chance we’ll see one or both of Flamini and Rosicky in the starting XI.

    With all due respect to Cardiff and the results they’ve achieved vs the Manc clubs, I’m hoping for a handsome victory today. And I take it we’re all Swansea and Southampton fans for the day.

    As for the transfer window, unless we lose someone to season-ending injury or sudden departure, I don’t think we’ll be making any signings, permanent or loan, this month. I reckon the money is going to be preserved for signing a high quality player or two in the summer (someone like Drexler).

  13. jnyc says:

    Raddy,, excellent as usual. I agree that I’d like to see jenkinson get a chance to play. If he can’t go in a match like this one, , we really have a problem.
    I’m feeling like sagna needs some rest and this is a good opportunity. Remember he is our best fill in for merts. That’s another reason I want him to re -sign. I think he is an excellent fourth choice cb. But I don’t think at his age that he should play as much as he has been. Must be rotated.
    And I don’t agree with bloggers that say bendtners lazy. I see him playing like someone with a point to prove. Obviously for his next contract somewhere.
    I also wish arsene would have rotated against West ham. Monreal in particular. He was healthy and rested for that one. That left him with a bad situation having a very overused Gibbs break down when he had to play at Newcastle .
    And Happy New Year to all AA faithful. Let’s get these three points!

  14. Big Raddy says:

    26. I like your team and your wish for a handsome victory

  15. 26may1989 says:

    Good news that Chelsea have posted a £50m loss for 2013, hopefully that should restrict their ambitions in the transfer market, at least so long as they say they want to comply with FFP regs.

  16. Big Raddy says:

    Jnyc. Agree about Sagna. He is too important to let go plus he has more AFC history than any other player., coming up to 250 games and 6 years in the first team

  17. RA says:

    A Happy New Year to all. :-)

    The usual addictive BR pre-match and with an interesting insight into how the Mrs BR manages to reassure the Big Raddish! :-)

    My main concern today, other than the numerous injuries and sick notes is the weather. The wind and rain are notorious for levelling the playing field by reducing the effectiveness of the skilful team and making the outcome more problematical to predict.

    Football was ever thus. :-)

  18. LB says:

    Don’t see why Sagna needs a rest; he has just got back from injury.

  19. mickydidit89 says:

    Ha ha Raddy,

    Love the conversation with Mrs R.

    Can’t ever remember having a football related conversation with Mrs D, but have an idea of how it may go :-)

    Although I love watching Gnabry, I’d be happier with Theo, and with Santi plonked in the middle of him and Lucas, I can’t see a problem with finding goals.

    Back later for KO.

  20. Norfolk Gooner says:

    BR, I can’t recall anything at all about a club refusing a particular referee, I doubt if the authorities would allow such a thing.

    I guess the only way Dean could be prevented from officiating at a future Arsenal game is to kidnap the b*****d on his way to the match.

  21. arnie says:

    Lovely stuff, Big Raddy. As you would no doubt know, in a discussion/debate between Mr and Mrs, the Mr always has the last word: “Yes, I agree, dear.” :D :D :D

    Let us put 3 points in the bag. No arguments.

    A little bit delayed, but Happy Hogmanay to all AA ers. http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_7vSSEIIuxpI/TSA9fJ1OWCI/AAAAAAAABpg/2BcAWI8-X-I/s1600/firstfooting-lores.jpg

  22. arnie says:

    Great job, Norfolk. I think there should be sustained pressure on the EPL to make their methods and findings public. Leads to better accountability and gives an opportunity to the paying public a chance to scrutinise the ref performances, and the PGMOL methods. Wont happen in a hurry, but sustained pressure should be continued.

    Kelsey: Interesting you think the Sagna-Jenks gap is larger than Giroud-Bendy. I do not have strong views, but pity for Jenks is Le Boss felt the same way.

    Today is the real test as to whether we need any signings in January. I suspect not, and personally will be perfectly happy without any. Perhaps, except for someone outrageous such as Costa or Deulofeu – wishful thinking!!!!! Other names doing the rounds do not fit into the Arsenal style of playing the game – this is my honest, humble opinion!!!! Of course, the jury is still out! :D :D

  23. arnie says:

    FFS, Swansea 1-3 Shitty!!!! :sad:

  24. RockyLives says:

    Great PM BR – and thank you for introducing us to Mrs BR :)

    My only real concern today is with “new manager syndrome”. Apparently Ole Gunnar Solskjaer arrived at the ground with Vincent Tan a short while ago. All the Cardiff boys will be eager to show the new man what they can do.

  25. kelsey says:

    Arsenal XI: Szczesny, Sagna, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Monreal, Arteta, Flamini, Wilshere, Walcott, Cazorla, Podolski

  26. arnie says:

    kelsey: thanks. looks like a decent lineup. :D :D COYG!!!!

  27. GunnerN5 says:

    Welcome all AA’ers to 2014 — The year of “The Arsenal”

  28. kelsey says:

    arnie

    I can’t compare Giroud/Bendy to Sagna/Jenks as Bendy is not a long term fixture and as you see doesn’t start today.

  29. GunnerN5 says:

    Morning Kelsey, you beat me to the team news – but here is the news from AFC including subs.

    TEAM NEWS: Podolski, Monreal, Arteta in

    Arsène Wenger has made three changes to his side for the New Year’s Day clash against Cardiff City at Emirates Stadium.

    With Olivier Giroud out injured, Lukas Podolski is expected to spearhead the attack, while Nacho Monreal replaces Kieran Gibbs at left back.

    Elsewhere, Mikel Arteta comes in for Tomas Rosicky.

    Team in full: Szczesny, Sagna, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Monreal, Arteta, Flamini, Wilshere, Walcott, Cazorla, Podolski

    Subs: Fabianski, Vermaelen, Jenkinson, Rosicky, Ryo, Gnabry, Bendtner

    Copyright 2014 The Arsenal Football Club plc.

  30. arnie says:

    kelsey: point well taken!!!! :D :D

  31. GunnerN5 says:

    I agree Kelsey Bendtner simply cannot be thought of as long term, he remains as a bad word on AA – deadwood. I would love this to be his last month at AFC as I cannot get over the many negative comments about AW and AFC that have erupted from his mouth.

  32. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Wow Kelsey

    Theo or Podolski through the middle?

    And where the heck is Jack going to slot in?

  33. Big Raddy says:

    Nice team, should do us proud.

    Watching MC, they are very good. Untroubled win over a good Swansea side

  34. GunnerN5 says:

    Raddy,

    I wonder if mouthy eruptions means that Bendtner is Denmark’s only active volcano?

  35. arnie says:

    lovely photo, Chad and Ant!!!!! Have fun!!!! :D :D :D

  36. MickyDidIt89 says:

    There’s confidence from Arsene. Ryo on the bench means one thing. AW reckons we may be 3 up with 10 to play.

  37. kelsey says:

    Micky

    I think Theo and Podolski will interchange left flank to central during the game.

    As for Jack….don’t know :)

  38. MickyDidIt89 says:

    K
    Hopefully AW has his clever hat on, and Santi is in the middle, which means only one thing for Jack. Words from LB :-)

  39. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Nasty feeling Pod central, Santi left, Theo right and Jack in LB’s favourite No 10 slot.

  40. GunnerN5 says:

    NG,

    Good attempt to get an honest response from the PGMOL but it looks awfully like a snub in the form of a generic response, how sad.
    Just like expecting Mike Dean to favour AFC.

    I’ve been trying to get (boring I know) some statistic’s on referee’s performances against Arsenal, here are some of my discoveries.

    Most unfavorable for Arsenal –

    1. Michael Oliver, W2, D2, L1 – winning points % = 33%
    2. Lee Probert, W2, D3, L2, = 43% of Pts
    3. Mike Dean, W16, D13, L10, = 52% of Pts

    Most favourable for Arsenal –

    Chris Foy, W18, D4, L1, = 84% of Pts.

    I assume Foy has been scolded for his positive bias towards Arsenal.

  41. evonne says:

    Great way to start the year with BR’s prematch, thank you Raddy!

    Not only we should get a trophy for winning in the calendar year, but the 4th place should be awarded with a cup too. Why should teams get cups for Capital One cup (£200k), FA cup (£2.5m) and nothing for CL qualification (£20m) ? all wrong

    Anyway, ,I already like Mrs Raddy, good girl she is :)

    I have my own story to tell – my resident Pool supporter has a friend who supports Arsenal. I hate that guy and sulk every time they go our on a bender. On Boxing day the resident told me that he is going out with the ugly Gunner to watch our game in a pub, adding quickly that every time he watches my team with his horrid friend, Arsenal win. Ha ha ha, he thinks I am really stupid :)

  42. arnie says:

    GN5: Not “expecting Mike Dean to favour AFC” but “expecting Mike Dean to shed his prejudice against AFC”!! :D :D

  43. GunnerN5 says:

    Today’s referee is Jonathon Moss, I have not been able to find any Arsenal specific stats but a review by Untold Arsenal on the 52% of his 2012/13 games in the PL that they reviewed indicates that he got 90% of his decisions correct – which is fine as long as the other 10% are not biased against AFC.

  44. evonne says:

    where are we watching the game?

  45. arnie says:

    I am on wiziwig Stadium-Live 2

  46. GunnerN5 says:

    arnie,

    I’m not getting involved in yet another circular debate about Mike Deans subconscious, Way too deep and fruitless.

  47. Gööner In Exile says:

    Afternoon, strongish line up and apparently injury concerns were over hyped…..naughty Arsene.

    The conditions played a part in City’s second and third goals. And for me Hart is still not back to his best, his footwork for the second Swansea goal was non existent.

    I love that Sky were all “City go top!” And not really focussing on more games to be played today.

  48. arnie says:

    GN5: :D :D :D

  49. GunnerN5 says:

    We are spoilt for live TV choices here in Canada, there 3 games on now, Liverpool/Hull, Arsenal/Cardiff, Southampton/Chelsea followed by Tottenham/Man U. The day started with Swansea/Man C.

  50. GunnerN5 says:

    Our commentator just said that it’s Jonathon Moss’ 1st game at the Emirates – so his record starts here.

  51. Big Raddy says:

    Close from Theo

    COYRRG

  52. Gööner In Exile says:

    According to TalkShite we have 100% record with Moss in 4 games…..who knows?

    Sounds a damp squib so far literally and metaphorically. :D

  53. fatgingergooner says:

    Weather making it impossible to play passes over the top. We need to be more patient and build through the centre of the pitch on the floor.

    Stonewall penalty just turned down! Awful decision.

  54. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Anyone else think we’re just about warmed up now :-)

  55. kelsey says:

    a bit like a kettle waiting to boil

  56. Big Raddy says:

    After the first half hour, i would say we are missing a CF. Pod not involved enough

  57. fatgingergooner says:

    Cardiff looking more likely on the break at the moment.

    We need to stop trying to force situations and just keep the ball.

  58. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Kelsey
    Be a Dear, and plug the bloody thing in, will you? :-)

  59. kelsey says:

    Disapointing first half even allowing for conditions.Podolski is hanging back to far but positives are Monreal,Wilshere and Cazorla

  60. arnie says:

    Very poor show, hopefully second half will be much better!!!!!

  61. kelsey says:

    Most probably bendy will come on and head the winner :)

  62. fatgingergooner says:

    Not a single shot on target is not good enough.

  63. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Jack best so far. Sure the goal will come, and if it comes early, I expect at least three.

  64. Big Raddy says:

    Emirates very quiet. We have yet to really test their keeper, but faiplay to Cardiff, they are defending very well.

    Cazorla and JW doing well. Less so Flamster and Podolski. Would like to see NB/Podolski central and Theo back on the right

    A little more patience and we will win

  65. California Gooner says:

    Disappointing show from Podolski. Very poor first touch. I wonder if we might be better off with Bendtner in the middle.

  66. kelsey says:

    In somefuture games I could see a twin strike force of Giroud holding up the ball for Podolski to slam home.

    The only change i can see will be bendy coming on to play alongside Podolski.

  67. You cannot believe the conditions here.

    Don’t moan about us being quiet, we are soaked to the skin. The water is pouring off huge sections of the roof onto supporters.

    I’m sure a goal will get the crowd going though

  68. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Don’t know whether their billionaire oriental owner has a powerful media empire, but I keep being offered oriental ladies for FREE.

    Seriously tempted to push the “oh, ok” button. Desperate times.

  69. MickyDidIt89 says:

    We can hear you loud and clear Peaches :-)

  70. Cardiff playing six across the back

  71. RA says:

    I cannot see or hear any commentary during the first half, but what I have gleaned from reading the blogs, I have an uneasy feeling that this feels like a 0:1 surprise result.

    Overreaction? Well. in the absence of direct info the mind does start to fear the worst. :-(

    We haven’t scored while I have been typing this, have we?? :-)

  72. fatgingergooner says:

    Take Flamini off and get someone down the left wing. Is Gnabry on the bench?

  73. MickyDidIt89 says:

    No chance of 0-1 RA :-)

    Goal is coming our way

  74. fatgingergooner says:

    We don’t have any shots on target because WE DONT F*CKING SHOOT!

  75. Gööner In Exile says:

    Missing Giroud yet?

  76. Big Raddy says:

    Must be time for an attacking change

  77. Jacks giving it a good go

  78. kelsey says:

    exactly fgg

    always the extra short pass instead of blasting it.

  79. Big Raddy says:

    Come on Arsenal. Big 30 mins ahead

  80. fatgingergooner says:

    Need some impotus from Rosicky. Could be key.

  81. fatgingergooner says:

    Merts has to score.

  82. Big Raddy says:

    BFG should have scored. Getting closer.

  83. fatgingergooner says:

    Again! Oh my word!

  84. MickyDidIt89 says:

    This is now brilliant
    Exciting

  85. fatgingergooner says:

    That goal is coming!!!

  86. Big Raddy says:

    Getting worried now. Cardiff defending very well

  87. RA says:

    This is excruciating! What is happening???

    Going to have a word with my favourite horse. I might get it from Geronimo’s mouth. :-)

  88. MickyDidIt89 says:

    RA
    Attack attack attack
    Trying to find a way through

  89. fatgingergooner says:

    Complete opposite of last 10 mins of Newcastle away, but equally painful.

    Come on Wilshere, one bit of magic!

  90. fatgingergooner says:

    Can’t stand Bendy, but he’s been excellent since coming on. Fair play!

    GET THE F*CK IN!

  91. kelsey says:

    Thank you :) :)

  92. fatgingergooner says:

    Brilliant goal! Wilshere’s been outstanding today.

    Need to increase my life insurance watching this Arsenal side!

  93. Big Raddy says:

    Never any doubt :-)

  94. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Fantastic love it love it love it

    My absolute favourite type of game. Tension. More tension. Can we do it?

    Yesssssssssssss we can :-)

  95. Räsp says:

    Excellent hard fought 2 points ……

    My comment @ 11:03 …..

    “My prediction is a cagey game, nil nil at half time with us scoring early in the 2nd and clinching it with a late 2nd …. 2 nil to the Arsenal :)

    OK, so we didn’t score early in the 2nd :roll:

  96. Hendon Gunner says:

    Great result! I thought a turkey was refereeing the match. Boy that ref was poggy!

  97. Big Raddy says:

    Plus a possession % of almost 100 %

    Really pleased for the Dumb Dane ….. Mrs BR very chuffed

  98. kelsey says:

    What actually happened to Bendy.

    Wilshere was outstanding can one play him and Ozil in the same side ?
    I wonder if a search for a striker will intensify.

  99. RA says:

    OK, my palomino tells me it will finish 2:0

  100. arnie says:

    fantastic. how serious is Bendy’s injury?

  101. RA says:

    What — it has finished 2:0? That horse is a genius!!!! :-)

  102. RA says:

    You are almost as good as Geromino, Rasper!! :-)

  103. MickyDidIt89 says:

    RA
    Palaminos always back a 2-0 home win. Known fact.

  104. Räsp says:

    I believe Jack supplied the assist for Theo’s goal, can anyone tell me who got the assist for Bendy’s?

  105. RA says:

    Was it horse, Rasp?

  106. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Santi, Rasp
    He forced the rebound

  107. Räsp says:

    This has been a very important 3 points for us. To start the year off with a win whilst missing arguably the 2 most important players ion the attacking third is a great achievement, a draw would definitely have been viewed as 2 points dropped. It sounds like we threw everything at them – this is another major step forward this season, in the past we seemed to lack a sense of urgency when chasing a game – not today.

  108. RA says:

    I think he is a palaminosaurus, Micky – he is the palo bit and I am the sore ass!! :-)

  109. Räsp says:

    Thanks Micky :P

  110. MickyDidIt89 says:

    RA
    My guess is you do the “why the long face” gag on Ed at least three times a day. Really pisses ‘em off :-)

  111. Räsp says:

    I’ve never herd of a player called hoarse :?

  112. RA says:

    Pheww, I was fearing the worst and the not knowing is terrible.

  113. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Rasp

    It was brilliant. My type of game. Massive tension with us chucking kitchen sinks and whatnot at them. Then the breakthrough, followed by, can we hang on.. Finally, some icing and relief all around.

    Superb entertainment.

    Oh, and I got offered free women throughout the entire 95 mins

  114. Big Raddy says:

    True about palaminos and their predictions. Holsteiners are known for their 1-0’s and Suffolk Punches for their dour 0-0’s.

    As you would expect the Welsh Cob tends to be aggressive with their predictions and rarely go with less than 4 goals per game

  115. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Raddy :-)

  116. Big Raddy says:

    Theo had a fine second half.

    JW my MotM. Never stopped running and looking for openings

  117. Adrian says:

    Happy new year to all.

    Wilshere/Cazorla my contenders for MOTM. Rosicky and Bendtner did really well after coming on, Bendtner in particular really impressed me. Pressing their players, holding up play and winning some high balls for us and of course scoring the opener. Pity for him to be injured in the process of scoring, this might* have marked a new start for him. Hopefully this will restore some faith among the fans towards him. Overall this game started off pretty dull but ended with a bang, what a way to kick start 2014 for the boys.

  118. Big Raddy says:

    No such thing as a free woman

  119. Bayonne Jean says:

    Rasp, it was Monreal cross, Sagna header, Bendtner on the rebound of the save.

  120. Big Raddy says:

    Can you guess who has the tightest defence in the PL despite conceding 6 in one game?

  121. arnie says:

    Raddy: :sad: dont remind us, please.

  122. RA says:

    Rasp, Micky, Raddy you obviously know your hosses! :-) :-)

  123. arnie says:

    I meant not to remind us of the 6 goals. Tightest defence Arsenal, period. :D :D Well done to the good guys.

  124. Räsp says:

    OK, peaches is battling the elements trying to get home from the game so who wants to make her life a tad easier by volunteering some ‘match feelings’ or player ratings?

  125. Räsp says:

    What’s this about Nik getting injured when he scored the goal? I’d like to see him start against the spuds.

  126. RockyLives says:

    Well, talk about grinding them out!

    Another very important win.

  127. Gööner In Exile says:

    Evening all, like RA I was Stream/TV/Radio Silence all I had was Stelling and Co he seemed all to want to write the Arsenal found wanting when it mattered script. Fair play to NikB. He is most similar to Giroud so in reality should be ahead of anyone else when it comes to replacing the big fella.

  128. RockyLives says:

    Whisper it, but this is one of the very rare occasions when I want the Spuds to win.

    ManUre are on a winning run and need reminding that they are crap.

    Of course if the Spuds lose, there’s still much joy to be had from that :)

  129. GunnerN5 says:

    Watching Spurs and Man U in a very poor clash against two teams fighting for a Europa League spot.

  130. kelsey says:

    Srangest moment in the game was Sagna taking a free kick,which by the way was awful

  131. VCC says:

    Rocky ..I hear you, just as well we are the only ones in the room because I want the Spuds to win too. ;-)

  132. Räsp says:

    Nah, you can never want the spuds to win – a draw littered with injuries and cards for both sides will suffice.

  133. RockyLives says:

    VCC :D

  134. RockyLives says:

    Sorry Rasp
    Spuds know they’re rubbish. ManUre need reminding.

  135. Big Raddy says:

    I never want the Spurs to win. A draw would suit but Spurs always roll over at OT

  136. Kgööner says:

    Wenger has just told me Bendtner has sprained his
    ankle and will be out for “weeks”. Won’t be drawn
    on potential transfers #bbcfootball #afc
    — Jacqui Oatley (@JacquiOatley) January 1, 2014

  137. Big Raddy says:

    KG.. Not good.

    Nor is seeing Eriksen in a Spurs shirt.

  138. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Rasp
    If no-one volunteers to do something footbally, I’ll dish out some “feelings”. I’ll be up early, so can quickly knock one out for Peaches if nothing has been offered.

    Raddy
    I swear girl after girl was been offered on my screen to just me. And seriously, they were all free.

  139. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Must go. What a great way to start 2014 :-)

  140. Gööner In Exile says:

    How can you possibly want anyone to win out of a ManUre v Spuds game?

    Only good outcome is a 0-0 draw 22 man brawl and points deducted…..may as well be poking myself in the eye with a stick rather than watching this.

  141. kelsey says:

    The way i saw the game we were slow out of the blocks (a pattern of recent home games) cardiff came for the draw and conditions made it difficult for both sides especially the way we play with intricate passing.
    We definitely upped our game in the second half and on another day Mertesacker would have scored at least one of his two chances.
    Remember Podolski has hardly played this season but he was playing too deep when we attacked or on crosses.
    Fine margins and a bit of luck sometimes decide a game..

    Even though the game was over at 2-0 a defensive lapse and a great block from Szsney kept our clean sheet

    .It’s hard for Vermaelen to be expected to be on top of his game with so little game time this season.

    Winning ugly has become the norm, but who cares.

  142. Big Raddy says:

    Micky. I am so impressed. They must have googled you under “most attractive man in the Western world”.

    It would be rude to refuse.

    Eriksen and Ade combine well together, thankfully Dilldado is proving to be an expensive flop.

  143. Adrian says:

    Spurs looking surprisingly good in this first half. Easily playing better than United. Adebayor making a big diff to their team, AVB must be kicking himself that he didn’t utilize him more previously. Hope this run doesn’t go far.

  144. Big Raddy says:

    Adrian. Don’t worry

    FIOS (Forever in our shadow)

  145. Räsp says:

    Thanks Micky “I’ll be up early, so can quickly knock one out for Peaches” :lol:

  146. Manthan says:

    Did anybody saw Flamster reaction on Bendy’s goal. Boy he is playing with his heart…

  147. LB says:

    Adebayor carried off — handy.

  148. Gööner In Exile says:

    Shocking defending by Valencia for Spud second, don’t think they will hold on.

  149. evonne says:

    OMG, you should see Peaches after the game – soaking wet and cold but jumping like a little girl with joy! Silly Peaches :)

  150. Big Raddy says:

    Good performance from Spurs in an exciting game. But what has happened to Hernandez? – he has become pants

  151. LB says:

    I wish I could be as enthused about Jack’s performance as others, some even naming him MOTM — but I am not.

    I must have watched a different game, I saw a player placed ahead of Arteta and Flamini in an attacking midfield role, I saw the same player, in the first half, create a few good give and goes on the edge of the Cardiff box, all impressive stuff, until it was time to pull the trigger and then — he bottled it.

    Wilshere did a lot of running around and I am sure his stats for passes completed are off the scale but his inability to use his right leg for any other reason than to balance severely limits his effectiveness as an attacking midfielder.

    By contrast. Cazorla the second most two footed player at the club was shunted out to the left wing and wasted, only when Flamini went off, Wilshere moved back and the Spaniard brought into the middle, did we get some real bite in our attack.

    The stand out aim in the job description of an attacking midfield player is to offer a goal threat, Wilshere does not do this, and for all those who like to use stats to augment their case, look at his goal scoring record over the last three years.

  152. Gööner In Exile says:

    LB would I be right in thinking you would be happy if we sold Wilshere?

    Because surely you don’t see him as a defensive midfielder, his tackling is worse than Paul Scholes and he does not track runners well.

    If you don’t think Wilshere is an attacking midfielder then I can only assume you would rather he wasn’t at the club?

  153. r0blucci says:

    LB,

    Ramsey goal scoring record over the last three years.was not that good either. I dont think Wilsehere even played as an attacking midfileder. More like box to box player.

  154. Gooner in Exile says:

    Anyway stats:

    Jack Wilshere

    Season Starts Sub Goals Assists Shots On Target Goals Per Start Goals per Shot
    13/14 17 5 4 2 24 10 0.23 0.17
    12/13 26 7 2 4 21 10 0.07 0.09
    11/12 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

    Mesut Ozil

    Season Starts Sub Goals Assists Shots On Target Goals Per Start Goals per Shot
    13/14 21 0 5 9 26 18 0.24 0.19

    Santi Cazorla

    Season Starts Sub Goals Assists Shots On Target Goals Per Start Goals per Shot
    13/14 16 3 1 2 41 12 0.06 0.02
    12/13 47 2 12 11 138 76 0.25 0.08
  155. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    LB, give it a rest. Jack Wilshere was outstanding today.

    He created several good goal scoring opportunities, almost scored himself, and along with his sublime skills worked his socks off.

    And all in the offensive poistion you think he cant play.

  156. fatgingergooner says:

    I remember one drive into the box on the right from Wilshere in the 1st half where he gave a couple of 1-2’s and nearly created a goal. I also remember seeing him do exactly the same on the other side in the 2nd half and hitting the woodwork! Both runs were creating something out of nothing. He also should’ve won us a penalty when causing mayhem in the box, and on a few occasions in the second half he was turning in tight areas in their box and causing problems.

    I saw a very good, and very positive attacking performance from JW today.

  157. Happy New Year everyone!!!

  158. evonne says:

    happy NY GM !!!! what a good start, ey?

  159. Rasp says:

    Hi chas, I should learn my lesson, I’ve been given a bum steer on the assists, could you email your spreadsheet of assists to arsenalnuts when you get a moment please

  160. 26may1989 says:

    I haven’t watched the game on telly yet, but based on what I saw at the stadium, Wilshere was my MOTM, hands down. Mertesacker, Koscielny and Arteta all looked good too.

    The way Jack receives the ball, and turns into space, sending his defender the wrong way, is excellent.

    Great to see Bendtner play with such appetite and determination, and then to get the winner (albeit supplemented by a nice Theo goal), perfect conclusion after all the misses and pressure. Bendy’s put down a real marker, just hope he gets over that sprain quickly (who would’ve thought we’d be saying that?).

    Cardiff were well organised and all that, but the laborious nature of the performance until Bendy and Rosicky came on was frustrating. Still, as ever, it’s those precious three points that matter, especially with Chelsea, City and Liverpool all winning.

    Excellent prediction from that man Rasp! But can we have a prediction for 7-0 next time, please?

  161. dandan says:

    LB what do the names Jon Sammels, Aaron Ramsay and Jack Wilshere have in common, they have all in their time been the whipping boys of the I go to footy to rid myself of my frustrations set, All fine players in their time but abused by a section of the crowd until they say “sod you lot” and leave.

    If it happens with Jack we the fans will be the losers because the young man is another player well on the way to being an Arsenal Legehd

  162. fatgingergooner says:

    What a shame that City and Chelsea are in the running with us for the PL. Ba or Jovetic (remember him!?) would’ve made great loan signings.

  163. if you haven’t seen this bookmark it and watch it when you have time

    https://docs.google.com/file/d/0By7bFllBc_A7QVVCazQxVTdlTlk/preview?pli=1

  164. RockyLives says:

    I thought Cardiff defended with a lot of intelligence and commitment today.

    One of the reasons we looked laborious at times in the first half was that it was literally hard labour to get round the massed bodies in the Bluebirds’ defence.

    We kept creating half chances (particularly Santi and Jack) but there were very few occasions when a straightforward shot was on: invariably there were blue shirts in the way.

    That said, Cardiff came to “parcio y bws” so they deserved to get beaten and, thankfully, they were.

    I thought our best performers were Jack, Theo, Santi, Nacho and Arteta, with a brilliant cameo from Bendy. TR7 also added some urgency and impetus when he came on.

    The Pod did not look like a central striker today: he seems much more dangerous when playing off someone like Giroud.

  165. LB says:

    GIE

    I certainly would not want to see Wilshere sold. I disagree with you about his ability to tackle, I think he is superb. Your comparison with Scoles who was absolutely useless when it came to tackling alarms me as I have always held you in high esteem when it comes to assessing a player.

    I have never professed to be a statistician but the shots on goal stats between Cazorla and Wilshere you give seems to back up the point I was trying to make above.

    BTW, do you have the shots on goal stats today between Cazorla and Wilshere?

    Terry

    I am giving it a rest, you may have noticed that I don’t write match reports anymore for fear of upsetting people.

    26

    I thought today was a great win as the three points were so important but I don’t think it was a great performance. I can only repeat what I said above that, when Wilshere got into the box, there were opportunities for him to shoot and he didn’t take them which is why I continue with the view that we are a weaker side when he plays in the attacking midfield position.

    Dandan

    I love you but just supporting Arsenal is sometimes not enough, occasionally I have to air the things that concern me, hence my regular appearances on this blog.

  166. RockyLives says:

    As for Bendy’s injury, when he landed he slightly turned his ankle, but (by sheer bad luck) the Cardiff ‘keeper’s shoulder landed on the ankle just was it was turning under Bendy.

    Without the ‘keeper landing on it it might have been just a painful tweak. Now it’s a full-on sprain.

    Our great Dane deserved better luck.

  167. RockyLives says:

    LB
    I think Santi had the same problems as Jack in terms of finding the right opportunities to shoot. As I mentioned above, Cardiff deserve credit for their defending.

    Santi had six shots today while Jack had three. On the other hand, Santi created two chances while Jack created six (according to Opta).

    To me they both displayed good elements of “No 10″ play in their game today and combined well with each other.

    By the way, I wish you would consider writing more reports – they are always excellent and I always like that you like to throw in a controversial thought or two to get the debate going.

  168. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Come on LB, who are you upsetting? I enjoy the alternative view on Wilshere.

    Your also a top poster, who most of the time I agree with. Anyway, how can I have the hump with some one who hates Totnumb as much as me.

    In this case though, I have to ask why you use today, one which most people think Jack played very well, to air another critiscism of Wilshere?

  169. 26may1989 says:

    Wot, no more LB match reports? That can’t be right. C’mon, say it isn’t true!

  170. 26may1989 says:

    Rocky, completely agree, Cardiff worked like buggery today. Interesting that Wenger, in his post match comments, described them as being the fittest team in the division.

  171. GunnerN5 says:

    LB,

    We are in disagreement once more.

    Jack was outstanding today and was clearly my MOM he worked his socks off and the fact he couldn’t pull the trigger was down to superb defending by Cardiff.

    A really gritty performance by AFC and great defensive discipline, for once in these types of games I never felt like the opposition would score so I felt it was either going to be one point or three.

  172. arnie says:

    Michigan State (Spartans) have won the Rose Bowl against Stanford!!!!! yo hooo hooo!!!!! :D :D

  173. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Looks like I’m on “Feelings” duty then.

    LB
    Rasp predicted a 2-0. I predicted that on seeing the team sheet with both Flamini and Arteta starting, as well as Santi and Jack, that you and Arsene were about to have a falling out :-)
    For God’s sake though, don’t stop writing match reports for fear of upsetting people, as quite apart from the “so what” factor, you leave tactical imbeciles like me to resort to penning nothing more than “feelings” :-)

  174. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Ant ‘n Duck,
    Thanks for the card :-)

  175. chas says:

    Motning, Micky.
    JC is skipping the spuds on Saturday to watch at home.
    Anyone regular fancy his seat? 50 to a mate.

  176. chas says:

    LB,
    I like your match reports best. :)

  177. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Thank you very much Chas, but no chance.

    Bet you had a good day yesterday.

  178. chas says:

    Loved it, Micky.

    The moaning was reaching a crescendo and the late goals knocked the stuffing right out of it. We were piss wet through all game but a finish like that warms the chuffing cockles. :)

  179. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Very happy for your cockles.

    At some point, every game ends and you trudge out, but those last gasp wins leave you with the biggest skip in your step.

  180. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Mmm, not happy with me first draft :-(

  181. Gööner In Exile says:

    Aaaaaaarrrtgh……NLD ticket going and I have no chance of leaving the house as it’s little mans birthday party Sunday, and I think there would be no chance of producing a second if I told Mrs Exile I was off to the footy. :(

  182. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Actually, thinking of a skip, I bought a skipping rope. The best money can buy, thinking it would improve my fitness, and make my footwork a little more nimble.

    Holy shit, that’s hard work. Not going very well at all.

  183. Gööner In Exile says:

    Micky the following Match Feelings are surely enough…..

    2-0, Top of The League, Happy New Year

  184. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Exile

    Copy. Paste. Thank you :-)

  185. LB says:

    I just had to re-read Evonne’s comment at 7.24pm again, it makes me chuckle every time I do so.

  186. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Post sent to nuts.

  187. MickyDidIt89 says:

    LB

    Do you have a post match routine, back to boozer for a de-brief with mates, or leg it?

  188. evonne says:

    message sent to chas

  189. evonne says:

    what?????????????!!! Webb didn’t give penalty to Manyoo??? OMG, Moyes is right – it is scandalous :)

  190. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Now, how did that message begin, Evonne

    “Dear Gorgeous,
    Was hoping…..”

  191. MickyDidIt89 says:

    11 points ahead of Utd. ROLF.

  192. This little girl still pumped the air when Nik scored on MOTD last night and Theo’s goal was just beautiful :)

    Morning

  193. Sorting the post ………………….

  194. evonne says:

    peaches :)

    No Micky, I have to be very careful with gorgeous, he is a moody sort. But yes, I would like the ticket he offered to you

  195. evonne says:

    for those of you naughty boys whom Santa didn’t visit, here is a late present courtesy of GM

    https://docs.google.com/file/d/0By7bFllBc_A7QVVCazQxVTdlTlk/preview?pli=1

  196. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Oh brilliant, Evonne.
    You’ll love watching the Spuds getting a good thrashing :-)

  197. evonne says:

    yeah, it all starts on the tube, when Spuds start boarding trains in Manor House. Few years ago police had to escort them out, that was funny :)

  198. Big Raddy says:

    Morning All,

    Nothing funny about the octaroons who board the train at Manor House.

    AFC don’t think they are funny either and will hopefully charge THFC for the damage they cause on every visit to The Emirates.

    IMO, they should be caged and forced to stand under a freezing jet of water for the remainder of their miserable lives (not really, some of my best friends are Spuds)

  199. evonne says:

    bad hair day Raddy ? :)

  200. New Post ………………………

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