Friday on My Mind

FA Cup on a Friday night? What is the world coming to?

Actually I like it. Mrs. Raddy likes it and therefore the local retailers are delighted.  Do you think this is the future or will too much football on television lead to a mass turn-off? We shall see how this experiment works, but an evening kick-off at the end of the working week ticks all the boxes for me. Especially a game in which Mr Wenger will have the opportunity to experiment – though not too much because the FA Cup remains a valuable trophy.

And what of Coventry? Gone are the days of fat Micky Quinn ruining my day at Highbury on a sunny August afternoon in the season Quinn scored 4 times against us (1993). No Sirree,  We are top of the PL and Coventry languish in the dark depths of League One and we don’t have a midfield of Morrow, Hillier, Jensen, Selley or McGoldrick,

Unknown

Micky, old Style Player. Beer gut, moustache, short shorts and dreadful kit

Coventry no longer play in their hometown. Blues fans have been boycotting  “home” games which are played at Northampton, as such they will be in their thousands at THOF tonight. Their team is made up of mainly local young chaps who are doing well despite a 10 point deduction for financial irregularities.

Last season in the CC Cup we beat Coventry 6-1, they will do better tonight. Coming to THOF with just one loss in their last 12 away games Coventry will be quietly confident of  creating an upset. They have a fully fit squad which I would like to tell you all about, giving detailed assessments of their strengths and weakness, a short description of their significant players, a tactical analysis of Coventry’s recent games and an interview with their manager, Steve Pressley.

Sadly, that will have to wait for another day …..

Arsenal: Who plays? Well we know who won’t play – Ramsey, Rosicky, Arteta and the rest of the long-term sick.

Given the opposition I expect Mr Wenger to play an experienced defence and then some of the younger fellows further up the field. Nik is sure to start with Gnabry on his right.

Fabianski is the cup GK  and with Koscielny and Podolski in the team we will be “Poled Up” which will make Evonne happy! Thinking of which, did you know that Mertesacker’s nickname in Germany is “Die Abwehrlatte” which means The Defensive Pole :-D

My Team:

arse v cov

Ox and Gnabry make very young and inexperienced “inside forwards” but I think they are our future and it will be interesting to see how they cope.  Perhaps we will see another outing for Myachi who has been on the sidelines this season, or maybe a cameo from Park. I expect Mr Wenger to have OG and Ozil on the bench in case it all goes tits up (sorry, Peaches Mum).

Coventry. The name comes from a Bronze age tribe who lived in the area, the Corieltauvi, who lived all over the Midlands before the Romans arrived and gave them a severe spanking. The Romans gave way to the Saxons who had their trousers removed by the Danish Vikings in 1016. They founded a Benedectine monastery which was run by the famous stripper Lady Godiva. By the middle ages Coventry was the biggest town in the Midlands. During the English Civil war Royalists were imprisoned in the city which gave rise to the expression “Sent to Coventry” (which means to be ostracised)

Fascinating. Well, it is to me!!

Back to football.  As we approach the end of the transfer window is anyone confident of a signing? Do we need one? Tonight will be an indicator. It is an important night for Bendtner, a man who has fluffed his lines so often. Play well this evening and who knows, he may earn another contract – if not at Arsenal then another high profile club; play a stinker without effort and a massive reduction of wages plus a gig at some sorry ignominious club like THFC awaits ……….. It happened to Adebayor.

Losses in last season’s cup competitions to Bradford and Blackburn are proof that lower league teams can and do beat us if the attitude and team selection is wrong.

Mr Wenger says he would love the club to win the FA Cup again.  So would I.

written by Big Raddy

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137 Responses to Friday on My Mind

  1. arnie says:

    Great stuff, Raddy. This style of investigation into place names and history is fantastic. Thank you for a very enjoyable read. :D :D

    I agree with everything you say, particularly because I know nothing about the football that Coventry City play.

    Transfers. My view is that we need none. But tonight will hardly be the proof either way. That would have been S’ton. But I hear their first team has gone on strike and they are sending their seconds to face Arsenal. :razz:

  2. arnie says:

    Hopefully a good game tonight, and yes, progression. :D :D :D

  3. fatgingergooner says:

    No upsets please!

    My team would be:

    Fabianski
    Jenkinson
    Mertersacker
    Vermaelen
    Monreal
    Flamini
    Wilshere
    Ox
    Gnabry
    Giroud
    Podolski

  4. LB says:

    Is Vermaelen fit? If so I certainly expect him to start. I can’t quite work out what Wenger is doing with Gibbs and Monreal, normally there is a pattern like Szezcney League and Fabinanski Cup but I can’t see the pattern at all with out two LBs.

    Good write up BR, I didn’t realise the expression of being sent to Coventry went all the way back to the Civil war.

  5. Danny says:

    I have this vague memory of being at Highbury in the winter of 1977, Coventry scored very early on, SuperMac got sent off and we fought like crazy to get an equalizer which I think came via an own goal in the end. The game sticks in my mind coz the crowd support was huge due to the unfair dismissal of SuperMac and this made the other 10 really go for it. Probably the best 1-1 I’ve ever seen.

  6. 26may1989 says:

    Coventry City, what a disastrous fall they’ve had. Back in the 80s, I remember there being pride that, after Arsenal and Everton, they had the longest uninterrupted time in Div 1. And then there was that fantastic FA Cup Final win over Spurs in 1987. They were innovators too: the first club to have an all seater stadium, I think, and there was that nutty kit with a massive Talbot logo on it.

    And now look at them. Midtable in the third tier, kicked out of their lovely new stadium, and subjected by owners to the ignominy of playing at Northampton. How the mighty are fallen. I wish the fans all the best in their battle with the club’s directors.

    Tonight, we should do well. I can’t make it to the game, as Friday eve was not one I’d protected from the booking of other things, but I do like the idea once in a while of a game on a Friday.

    The line-up? I’d go with:

    ————————- Fabianski
    Jenkinson, Mertersacker, Vermaelen, Gibbs
    ——————— Flamini, Zelalem
    —————– Gnabry, Ox, Podolski
    ————————- Bendtner

  7. chas says:

    Excellent, BR.
    Particularly educational about the monastery masquerading as a brothel. :)

    Nice memory, Danny.
    My favourite Coventry game was the 6-1 at the end of the 1991 season with the Super Swede bagging a hat trick.

    Hearing that the Coventry fans are going to sing protest songs on 35 and 61 minutes some wag on twitter asked if it was going to be Creedence Clearwater Revival.

    For those going, the forecast for N5 is heavy rain at 10pm. Hopefully we’ll be in the tube station before it hits.

  8. chas says:

  9. chas says:

    At the start of the transfer window I was 100% convinced we would sign no-one.
    For no reason whatsoever, I now think it’s likely we will.

  10. arnie says:

    I still maintain we are not desperate for transfers. Nevertheless, it is good to see that the club is trying to do things, even if its only the January window. :D

    On transfers, a glimpse into the dark bad world.

    LEAKED: The faxed copy of Real Madrid’s transfer offer for Neymar is leaked. Sensitive details! (Source: The Football Bar)

    http://cdn1.lockerdome.com/uploads/105601b1dc9a169748a711ecc5ff6d166528edcc55206a863bfe28090dbe514e_large

  11. arnie says:

    Nice lineup, Raddy. Likewise, FGG. But news in the grapevine is that Zelalem may start. Lovely. Cannot really complain. :D :D

  12. JanMan says:

    Nice post BR. The starting line up for tonights game should be interesting. I did not think that NB was fit yet? Personally I believe that sponsorship and TV money is now dictating the game. TV companies are now in a posistion to where they can tell the FA when to schedule a game. From another point of view would the fan base be happy if the amount of TV coverage there is today was no longer available? To be honest we are spoilt for choice with the amount of live games available and in many countries, for a fee, you have the ability to watch the game of your choice live. For example SKY Sports Germany shows every single Bundesliga and 2nd Bundesliga game live (just press the red button and select your game of choice) Additionally you can do the same thing for the German cup games, champions league and Euro league. The complete sports package is 39 Euro a month. That is far more cheaper than obtaining a season ticket (of course you cannot beat a live game) In the States I have the FOX cable package and you can see all of the English EPL. So without doubt I don’t think we could survive without the modern day TV coverage.

  13. kelsey says:

    I always like your pre match posts,Raddy especially the insight into the opposition and the area they come from and its history or inventors..
    Gone are the days of every match kicking off at 3.00p.m. on a Saturday which in a way is a shame but money rules and now we have these matches spread over three days and the draw for the next round is made before all the matches are completed.Gone are the days of Bedford Town ;)
    You may well be right with your team selection but if jenkinson plays he will be targeted. IMO he just isn’t good enough yet as a back up for Sagna.

    I was impressed with Fabianski in the last round and he is another who is out of contract this Summer so I wonder who will be our number 2 keeper. The Italian Job is as much a mystery to me as us buying Park.

  14. Danny says:

    Coventry will always for me be Willie Carr’s free kick back in our double season 70-71. It’s on youtube somewhere.

  15. LB says:

    Gentle sighhhhhhh, the Willie Carr free kick…….happy days

  16. TwentyTwelve says:

    Another excellent pre match post by BR. The “famous stripper Lady Godiva” line made me do a double take ;) although I don’t want to suffer the same fate as Peeping Tom.

    Talking about Park, have you all seen this fun video? http://instagram.com/p/jTxOrdErtl/# Check out Flamini tossing his head back out of admiration/frustration. If nothing else, Arsenal is making use of Park’s keep away skills during training sessions.

  17. fatgingergooner says:

    I quite like Fabianski. He was excellent last season when covering for Szscesny and seems a totally different keeper to when he signed. I wouldn’t have a problem with him staying as our number 2, but I think he’s destined to move on.

    Interesting that Mata’s transfer may be to stop Chelsea breaking the FFP rules. If it is the case then at least they are having some effect, even on the mega-rich.

  18. Gööner In Exile says:

    Well done Raddy, Coventry have a special place in my heart as an Arsenal fan, my brother got to be mascot at Highbury (only finding the back of the net when Lukic went off to retrieve one of the other shots that went way wide. (My brother was a good player but insisted trying to score from outside the box than go to the penalty spot as most do). The picture of him Sansom, and Kilkline pre match, missing Allinsons opening goal as we waited for my Brother to get changed, Debbie the JGs Secretary making sure our day was great, getting to go in the players lounge and getting autographs. Perfect day.

    Highfield Road was my first away trip with my Dad embarassed by me wearing the “awful” (his words) chevron kit that I really liked!

    So I wish I was there tonight to applaud the Coventry fans as they make their feelings known at 35 and 61 minutes. All attending please get behind this campaign by RedAction as I think it shows our class as fans.

    But all that said I hope we spank them :D

  19. arnie says:

    Maureen on fairness and Arsene:

    Mourinho on Mata sale: 'If we say to Man United, 'Because you didn't sell us Wayne Rooney we won't sell you Juan' … that's not right'— Sam Wallace (@SamWallaceIndy) January 24, 2014

    Mourinho on Wenger: 'When he says this is not fair I think what's not fair is his team always has the best days to play [ie, more rest]'— Sam Wallace (@SamWallaceIndy) January 24, 2014

    Mourinho: 'Wenger complaining [about Mata transfer] is normal because he always does'— Sam Wallace (@SamWallaceIndy) January 24, 2014

  20. chas says:

    GIE,
    Have you got any photos of Debbie?

  21. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Nice one Raddy

    I would like to see the stiffs and youngsters get a run out tonight. Despite the desire to win the cup and clamour for any sort of trophy, I still hold the belief we have bigger fish to fry and its good for the development of the club to give the kids a taste of the big match atmosphere

    My favourite game against Coventry was when Bob Carolgees scored a hatrick against us at Highbury

    It was a right shock. Firstly, I was convinced that the same day I had seen Carolgees on that kids show Tiswas, and secondly, I always thought he had only one arm and had a transplant of Spit the Dog as a replacement

    People around me couldn’t believe it when he was banging them in but for some reason they kept referring to him as Quinn

    Every one got more confused and gave me a funny look when I angrily shouted “Imagine how I feel. I thought he had a dog for an arm, and who the bloody hells Quinn”

  22. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    I dont wish to be rude Raddy, but I have just worked out that the game your referring to when this Quinn bloke got a hatrick might be the same game?

    Is it because you heard every one else shouting “bloody fat Quinn” and just assumed his name was Quinn?

  23. Big Raddy says:

    TMHT. The photo in the post might be a clue :-D

  24. Gööner In Exile says:

    Chas I think my parents might have. From memory Blond and an absolute diamond! My Dads bank later sponsored a lot of early Community JG projects

  25. arnie says:

    More rumours. Pingpong set to leave Arsenal before close of the transfer window. [Source: SkySports]

  26. Danny says:

    Thanks RASP
    Ex Gunner Jeff Blockley seen at 0:29

  27. dandan says:

    My favourite memory of Coventry, was at their ground in the Jimmy Hill days, at Christmas time with the Coventry Cathedral Choir singing carols on the pitch, made a change from the Met Police boys back at Highbury. Jimmy was ahead of his time.
    Thanks for another excellent contribution BR

  28. RA says:

    A very good morning to you Big Radford, and a very good Post to boot.

    I know next to zilch about Lady Godiva and just as much about Coventry football, except that about 15 years ago I saw a re-run of the film and thought it was very good – with a glamorous, doe eyed, non-naked Glynis (?) showing nothing – not even a boob!!. Boo! :-)

    Not sure how much of the game I will get to see this afternoon, so I am hoping there will be some updates on AA in case I cannot change my commitments.

    It is an odd feeling to be involved in discussing a game to be played on a Friday. Still, it is good to read a Raddy pre-match.

  29. arnie says:

    Man Utd not prepared to carry out Mata medical until deal signed off by Chelsea. Once Salah completes #cfc move, Mata to #mufc can proceed— David Ornstein (@bbcsport_david) January 24, 2014

    But Rodgers has apparently said on TalkSport that Salah to Chavs is not a done deal.

    Henry and co making fools of themselves? Yet again? Who knows? :D

  30. RA says:

    Just catching up on the footie bits and pieces and cannot believe that machiavellian, moaning Maureenio is accusing Mr Wenger of …. moaning.

    What a sh*t that Chav creature is.

  31. arnie says:

    Had to post this. Dont kill me, please. :razz:

  32. arnie says:

    Dont know what happened. Trying again:

  33. RA says:

    Calling Chas; Calling Chas:

    Can you sort arnie out please — he is going loopy!! :-)

  34. arnie says:

    Redders: :D

  35. fatgingergooner says:

    Can’t see Zelalem starting tonight, but if he does, I will be very excited to see how he gets on. He looked top draw in pre season, even though the opposition was 2nd rate.

    I hope Podolski and Ox get starts too as they could be very important players over the next few weeks.

  36. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Fantastic Raddy, thank you.

    Great stuff on Coventry. Had no idea where the “sent to” saying came from. As for the team, crikey, no idea really. I would have thought it would be sensible to give match time to Verm, and I’d be very concerned if Pod didn’t start.

    Out of interest, why are Coventry now playing home games at Northampton?

  37. Big Raddy says:

    BTW Raddy is going on hols again soon. We need volunteers to write PM’s for Liverpool, MU, 5th Round and BM.

    Can’t believe the quality of football I will be missing! It’s shitballs

  38. Big Raddy says:

    & Sunderland :-(

  39. Off to the match soon, would someone like to volunteer to write the match report please :)

  40. jnyc says:

    Raddy, another cool post, i love that photo!

    also, compliments to ARNIE, your comments, links and quotes are excellent! ! Fantastic contributions always, thanks. Keep it up.

  41. dhakka09 says:

    great pre-match BR

    If Verm is fit, I’d like to see him in starting 11. Same goes for Zelalem; Bendy should give our handsome Frenchman much needed rest. Cazorla and Ozil should be afforded time-off to put their feet up as well. Bendy, Gnabry, OX, Poldi and Zelalem should have enough attacking quality to see us through. (and why is Poldi on the ground so early for the match-day? I hope he catches a nap somewhere in the Stadium. We need him fresh)

    A win today and another vs wounded (by a brick? lol) Southampton later this week should bring us nicely onto the eye of the storm in coming days in rude health.

    COYG

  42. evonne says:

    what a great way to finish a difficult week :)
    I got all the chores out of the way, sat down to read the Raddy and will now wait to watch the game, terrific!

    Yes Raddy, Evonne is very happy if Polaks play for Arsenal, no idea why, because I don’t normally like Polish men :) No, to be fair, I don’t like any men unless they are Arsenal.

    I cannot see anything but a win, but let’s not get carried away. Those seemingly insignificant teams have a knack of upsetting our season.

    No idea who’ll play tonight, but given that the next game is Southampton on Tuesday, I’d say we don’t need to rest players, let’s have the best, put the game to bed early and have a few babes to finish the job. Is Diaby fit yet ?

  43. Thanks BR, the media want to build this up as a potential banana-skin, but I think we’ll be comfortable winners.
    Hi Micky, a bit sketchy on detail, but as far as I know, Coventry were paying their City Council rent for the right to call the ‘Ricoh Arena’ their home but ran into serious administration problems, so the two parties fell out over unpaid rent, and Coventry’s complaints that the rent being demanded was extortionate. The Football Club were effectively made homeless, the Council then tried to back-track and offered them the use of the stadium for a much-reduced rent during last summer, but the club and their fans rejected the proposal and started the current season playing their ‘home’ games at Northampton.
    I’m sure there’s folk out there better informed than me, but I hope that helps a little.

  44. Big Raddy says:

    10/11. A proud day!

  45. kelsey says:

    Arsenal: Fabianski, Jenkinson, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Gibbs, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Wilshere, Gnabry, Ozil, Podolski, Bendtner. Subs: Sagna, Giroud, Viviano, Monreal, Cazorla, Flamini, Zelalem.

  46. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Just dropped in to see team news

    Arsenal team: Fabianski, Jenkinson, Koscielny, Mertesacker, Gibbs, Wilshere, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Ozil, Gnabry, Podolski, Bendtner

    So, Jack as a DM!

    Tragically, I can’t stay to watch the game, so it’s a Come on you Gunnners from me. Enjoy the game.

  47. Danny says:

    Maybe it’s just me but I can’t believe Wenger has put Ozil in the starting 11. If he gets injured playing tonight, well, you all know….

  48. evonne says:

    Danny – it is just you :)

    I would be more worried if Per or Koscielny got injured than Ozil. He will be subbed after the first 3 goals, relax

  49. evonne says:

    glory glory goldie Poldi :) took his bloody time, I thought he wasted the opportunity

  50. kelsey says:

    A german one two …wunderbar

  51. Big Raddy says:

    Beautiful pass from Ozil for Poldi’s goal.

  52. kelsey says:

    Great save by fab,however we go one up and slow the pace down a familiar pattern. is bedtner playing :)

  53. Big Raddy says:

    Another German double……

  54. kelsey says:

    another german one two ….wunderbar

  55. Big Raddy says:

    Good support for the Coventry demonstration.

  56. Big Raddy says:

    Comfortable. One more goal and then we could take off Jack to give Zebadee a few minutes.

  57. kelsey says:

    Bedtner is really pants.This is coventry we are playing, bring on Park :)
    Take a look at Fab’s save again, a really great save.

  58. dhakka09 says:

    report in Beinsports half-time talk that we have agreed a fee for Draxler :)

  59. Big Raddy says:

    Great to see Oggy still at Cov. Hasn’t changed a bit

  60. Big Raddy says:

    Dhakka. They say the same on danish TV

  61. kelsey says:

    Have to give credit to Coventry in the second half.A better team would have made it a lot more difficult. Thank goodness for Kos. defensively we really look vunerable.

  62. kelsey says:

    Anglo French one two

  63. evonne says:

    listen my hairy friend – if not for MY compatriots your team would be on their arses, all right?

    So, when I reported Draxler deal being as good as done about 2 weeks ago, who was it that said the lad had an ankle injury? NG?

    MY Santi!!!!!!

  64. Big Raddy says:

    Easy and expected victory,

    Good run around for some players. NB tried hard but is embarassed playing with such quality around him

  65. fatgingergooner says:

    Straightforward win.

    With a game in 4 days time it’s just as important to keep the players sharp as it is to keep them fit. I think AW got the balance just about right.

    Kos was outstanding, Wilshere is getting better each game and Pod showed why his goals can be so important for the run in.

  66. kelsey says:

    Santi :)

    I still would like to see a bit more steel in the squad, the score flattered us but another potential banana skin out of the way.

  67. fatgingergooner says:

    Won’t be believing any transfer rumours until it’s on Arsenal.com

    In the summer we signed Jovetic, Fellaini, Higuain, Rooney, Gustavo, Di Maria etc etc etc!!!!

  68. Has anyone offered to write about the game please for a post tomorrow?

    I’m standing on the platform at Finsbury Park, very wet :(

  69. arnie says:

    Good good, job well done, very happy. Poldi was great, The Ox came through nicely, and Zelalam – what a competent debut!!!! :D :D In the moddle third we offered too much space in the second half, I think. But overall, job well done, onwards and upwards. :D :D :D

    S’ton next, and this will be tasty. :D :D :D

  70. arnie says:

    Apparently, fee agreed with Schalke on the Draxler deal. Not yet clear whether transfer this month or over the summer. Fingers crossed. :D

    @AFC_Guly: Draxler done deal according to @JanAageFjortoft #excitedmuch #arsenal #Germans #COYG” No! I said "agreed fee"— Jan Aage Fjortoft (@JanAageFjortoft) January 24, 2014

  71. arnie says:

    I am placed in moderation. :sad:

  72. LB says:

    There are a few words in drafts.

    Night, night.

    Good win.

  73. arnie says:

    Good stuff, LB. Will be fun. :D :D

  74. arnie says:

    My comment is still in moderation. I wonder why? :D

  75. kelsey says:

    My ratings

    Fabianski 8

    Jenkinson 7.

    Gibbs 7.

    Wilshere 6.5

    Mertesacker 7

    Koscienly 9

    Gnabry 7

    The Ox 6.5

    Bendtner 2

    Ozil 8

    Podolski 8

    subs

    Zelalem 6

    Cazorla 7

    Giroud 7

  76. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Yesssss, we won :-)

    Thought rather than look up the result before bed, I’d follow the game through on here in the comments.

    Loved the Raddy/Kelsey one two’s. It reads like walkie talkie checks

    Raddy : “German one two”
    Kelsey: “One Two. German one two”
    Raddy : “Copy that, repeat, one two”
    Kelsey: “Repeat. Germany one two over”
    Raddy : “Roger that. One two. Over and out”

    Now, can I find goals on Arsenal player?

  77. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Oh, by the way, in the immortal words of Evonne

    “Where is everybody?” :-)

  78. MickyDidIt89 says:

    No, not on Iplayer yet, and can’t access youtube either.

    Well, there is a reason I’m up this early, and for it, I’m now offski.

    Can’t wait to read LB’s report, and how did Jack do at DM alongside the Ox?

    Back in three hours.

  79. Gooner in Exile says:

    Motning Micky :D

    I got in just after kick off, and fell asleep before the 3rd and 4th goals went in :oops: Friday kick offs are inconsiderate!

    Think Arsene’s team selection was a bit of an F*** You to those pundits who question our squad, 6 changes from Saturday and the pundits are saying “Arsenal have fielded a strong side tonight”. And apart from Bendtner was there anyone on the pitch you would be unhappy seeing in a PL game if all are fit.

    Think its so hard to choose between Gibbs and Monreal at left back, Ox made a very good performance in the middle of the park, his range of passing and strength makes him ideal in that role. I still think we will see more of him out wide in the PL but he is an option in the middle when needed.

    Ozil to Pod for the first goal was all about years of built up understanding.

    Second half highlighted what Arteta does well and what we missed as BFG was left with no one to pass to in midfield as they got a bit lazy in there.

  80. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Poldiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii

    Now late, must go, but feeling great after this

  81. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Hi Exile,
    Saw your comment, but really must dash. Back later.
    Watch my vid over and over until I return. My (and Chas’) favourite ever commentator

  82. kelsey says:

    Morning Micky

    I most probably viewed the game differently yo mos.Yes we won but even the most ardent fan would agree that the scoreline flattered us and it may have given AW some food for thought.
    We started so well as we nearly always do with some sublime football with Ozil really conducting things and it was just a matter of time before we scored and Pod took his goal well.
    Then Coventry woke up and whatever his name is,just ran 40 yards through our defence and brought out a magnificant save from Fab. Thewarning signs were there as so often iss the case this season,but we regained composure and the much practised near post flick from BFG brought dividend with the Pod simply heading the ball in.
    Game over possibly not. The second half saw a revitalised Coventry who on at least 4 occasions could have scored ,all the chances created from the middle to or defending left hand side and Kos was magnificent covering up for everyone else’s mistake and Fab yet again made a great reaction save.
    A better team would have punished us and possibly at 2-1 it might have been a nervous last half an hour.
    One could argue that Coventry had more clear cut chances than us, and that needs addressing. IMO Flamini was a big miss
    Gnabry and The Ox both got valuable game time and both look stars of the future and Jenkinson (who I always fear might have a howler or two) had a ver good game and whipped in some excellent crosses.
    Jack had an indifferent game and tended to fade the more the game went on and what can one say about Bedtner. He had a chance to shine,to put himself in the shop window against far lesser opposition than we normally play,yet he was dreadful.he hardly got out of walking pace and seemed like he didn’t want to be there.
    Good subs by the boss and a very tired Coventry team finally got overrun with goals from the subs Giroud and Cazorla. Job done but I still feel we need more steel in the side and we have to finish teams off .It shouldn’t be like that as even Raddy said that at 2-0 a third would put the game to bed. A better team would have taken those second half chances but maybe this is our year and lady luck is on our side.
    I thought the ref had a good game and generally the match was played in good spirit without a really bad foul in the whole match.
    Kudos to the 8000 Coventry fans who really have been given a hard time and last nights gate receipts will help them financially.

  83. kelsey says:

    yo mos=to most :)

  84. kelsey says:

    GIE

    You are far more technical than I am so kindly explain why Coventry were given those gilt edge chances in the second half.

  85. Gööner In Exile says:

    Morning Kelsey, think it’s more mindset than technical. A case of “we’ve done enough, and we can score again if we need to”. A worrying trend continued from the Villa game.

    Think it might also be a bit of “don’t get injured” in the back of players minds. The squad is performing so well that any prolonged absence could see a player losing his spot in the starting XI as there is an adequate replacement, as you say that goes for everyone bar Bendtner.

    Also think there was a bit of a gap between defence and midfield second half a gap that Flamini and Arteta normally occupy

  86. kelsey says:

    Tend to agree with that. I also had the feeling of “don’t get injured” throughout the game.
    It’s a dangerous game to play,winning ugly is fine (not refering to last night) but better teams could punish us.

  87. chas says:

    Motning.

    kelsey,
    You ought to do the match reports because you always write one anyway.
    Flippin heck, ratings as well. Job done.

  88. chas says:

    When some of the floodlights went out, loads got out their cameras and put the spotlight on. The Emirates became a twinkly, magical place. (this doesn’t quite do it justice)

  89. chas says:

    This was part of the Coventry demo.
    Their fans that were following us to the ground were such arses that I didn’t really feel like applauding them once it started but most did so that was ok.

  90. kelsey says:

    Morning chas

    I used to do the match reports in the kelsey way but my spelling is awful.

  91. chas says:

    kelsey,
    I don’t think anyone gives a monkey’s about spelling,

  92. chas says:

    ALLLLLLAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHH
    POLDI
    MUSSA ARSENIL

  93. chas says:

    Assists
    Ozil
    BFG
    Gibbo
    Jenks

  94. Morning all

    Sorry Arnie, I tried to release your comment bit I’m on my phone and seem to have lost it :oops:

    Maybe GiE can have a look in comments. It could be the links that held it in moderation.

  95. chas says:

    peaches,
    Didn’t the stadium look lovely, all twinkly and that. :)

  96. Yes chas, it did become a magical place. I tweeted my photo but couldn’t get on the blog to put it up. Maybe I can now

  97. Did that work? I can’t see the links on my phone doh

  98. Arnie if you’re about, can you put your comment on again about the Draxler deal and I’ll try to not lose it

  99. chas says:

    Yes, it worked, p.

    Special press conference on Monday. I bet it’s about a new commercial deal with Indesit.
    One of the golden tickets in the programmes was to win a washing machine. Imagine having to take that home with you on the train!

  100. chas says:

    peaches,
    Did you get lucky last night, hence being away from your desktop? :lol:

  101. Kelsey – very good comments about the game as usual. When the team took their foot off the pedal there was very little control in the midfield. Coventry were able to slice their way through all too easily and Arteta/Flamini were missed.

    However when they felt they’d given Coventry enough of the ball they turned on the style and finished them off.

    As you say, a better team could have punished us ,,,,,,, but Coventry weren’t able to.

  102. chas says:

    I didn’t realise the Twelve Pins was an away pub!

  103. Cheeky bugger chas, no, I’m still in bed :)

  104. chas says:

    Right gotta go.
    What am I going to do for the rest of the weekend? :)

  105. I expect alcohol will play some part.

  106. Gooner in Exile says:

    Released Arnie from moderation

  107. Big Raddy says:

    Morning All,

    Strange game.

    I do not believe that a better team would have punished us – against a better team we would have played differently,. That is why we are ToTL.

    As has been said there was a DM sized hole in midfield but AW chose to play the entertainers and do without a defensive insurance. Fair play to him. It worked.

    Furthermore, I do not agree the scoreline flattered us. We were 4 goals better than Coventry. Sure, they could have taken one of their chances but by that token we could have taken more of ours.

    As I see it a professional job well done and onto the 5th round.

    What I do agree with is that Bendtner was well below the standard expected from a first team Arsenal player. He worked hard but his pace was lacking, his control poor, his positioning not good enough and his shooting dire. A hugely disappointing performance.

  108. evonne says:

    It was more like a friendly against San Marino’s top team. Coventry, bless them, gave their best, but could not touch us. The 53 places difference was rather obvious.

    The feel good factor is with the team, let’s hope it stays through the next 2 tough months

    I loved first Poldi’s and Santi’s best. Cool and deadly, beautiful. What religion is Santi – he keeps kissing his wrists

    PS I was in bed at 4:49am, where you should be DidIt

  109. kelsey says:

    4 games away from Wembley :)

    Anyone see Henry on the Graham Norton Show. Hillarious. Asked if Bedtner was the reason he left Arsenal.

  110. kelsey says:

    peaches,

    Coventry were knackered at the end.Wenger took a slight risk and it payed off.
    I would try and keep Fabianski just to keep Szsney on his toes,but I doubt that will happen.

  111. kelsey says:

    evonne,

    of course everyone knows Tre Penne Galazzan , San Marino’s top team :)

  112. evonne says:

    my hairy friend :) BBC Sports pundits are much kinder to the Arsenal than their Sky colleagues. O’Leary and McManaman were highly complimentary of our team. I guess it would be hard for the Linekear/Shearer/Hansen trio to criticize, but they would manage to stick the ‘still not champions material’ somewhere

  113. kelsey says:

    Last night history was made since Arsenal was founded.

    Four and a half germans played.

  114. LB says:

    I am off out to Richmond Park for a few laps, I will not be around but I can say that I have kept the Wilshere stuff to a minimum.

  115. evonne says:

    just one little dig at Jack then? :)

    Nay, Kelsey, there were 3 and a half Poles

  116. LB says:

    Or maybe two. lol

    Peaches, for the avoidance of doubt I have finished.

  117. arnie says:

    Motning all. Feels like midday. Fantastic discussion everyone. Keep it going. :D :D :D

  118. arnie says:

    I disagree with most of you guys on formation. This year we have ben defending from the deep allowing opposition space to come up right to the box before we charge them down. This allows time for our travellers Mert, Sagna/Jenks and Gibbs/Monreal to return from their saunters.

    This strategy is risky and would sometimes not work. Yesterday one one of those days. DMs are in principle supposed to block such advances. Yesterday, in the absence of Flamster it all fell to shreds. Luckily it was Coventry so we were not punished.

    All’s well that ends well!!!!! :D :D :D

  119. Big Raddy says:

    arnie. Seems to me that are agreeing with the majority.

    Not playing a DM results in space in front of the back 4.

  120. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Motning again all.
    Looking forward to the LB ringside take on events.

    Agree Kelsey has virtually written a MR, but can we not volunteer the hairy one for regular duties, as I reckon it may result in some wrist slitting :-)

    No defensive mid and still 4-0 against anyone has to be good news.

  121. New Post everyone …………………

  122. fatgingergooner says:

    I thought Ox was excellent 1st half in CM and it will definitely be the position he ends up in.

    Wilshere showed some great moments too with a couple of brilliant turns and passes to put people through.

    As people have said we definitely missed a DM in the 2nd half as Coventry upped their game, but it always had the feeling we were in control.

    Let’s not forget that Bendy, Ox and Podolski have all recently returned from injury, so it’s understandable that they faded as the game wore on.

    Can’t believe I’m going to defend Bendtner, who I think is a tit, but this was his return from injury and we have already seen this season how long it takes him to get up to speed. Remember the Capital One Cup game against Chelsea where he was absolutely dreadful?

    For me it was a job well done. We were professional for the most part and made sure there was to be no repeat of Blackburn. We also had no injuries and kept our sharpness for Southampton.

  123. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Hi Arnie

    I think you are in Camp Kelsey. “Lucky it was Coventry”
    I doubt Arsene would have lined up like that against City. So planning not luck I reckon :-)

  124. arnie says:

    Micky: yes, planning it was. But even against better opposition, we are leaving too much space for my liking. For my nerves as well. This I think is because Sagna and Gibbs overlap too far. I thought Theo would reduce Sagna’s ventures a bit. Alas!!!!! :D :D

  125. kelsey says:

    “in Camp Kelsey” sounds a lot better than Camp Kelsey

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