Sheikh, Rattled and Rolled

Written by kelsey

By now you will have most probably read several reports about the game at Eastlands, and those lucky enough to have witnessed it will now have a broad grin on their faces.

The general consensus of opinion beforehand was that a draw would have been a good result, but with United winning, the nerves were on edge and many thought could we turn up and possibly bag three points. With Wilshere suspended, Diaby was dropped and Sagna regained his rightful place at right back and Denilson came in to bolster the midfield.

The game kicked off and within a minute Tevez tricked Djourou into a mistimed challenge and passed to the talented Silva who flicked the ball goal bound and the much maligned Fabianski made a tremendous save. To me that was even at this early stage the turning point of the game.

Within a further 4 minutes Boyata fouled Chamakh and there was no hesitation from Mark Clattenburg to issue a red card. Refs come in for a lot of criticism but he had an exceptional game and got almost every decision right, a rarity these days.

So it was ten against eleven and City were primarily defensively minded. I am one who believed that the one man advantage didn’t benefit us greatly until the final 15 minutes when City were run ragged.

Arshavin gets a lot of stick, but yet again his assist for Nasri was sublime. A second goal was needed,and when Fabregas was brought down,we thought 2-0 but Hart made a magnificent save. The first half had been feisty, with 4 of our players booked and many thought at half time we would finish playing ten again ten. Wenger must have given explicit instructions at half time, and as the game fanned out, the team grew in confidence and we added two further goals.

I have to say that I haven’t seen a keeper look as assured as Fabianski for many a game. Hopefully his confidence will be sky high and he will remain as our number one. Cesc got man of the match but to me Fabianski and the highly skillful Nasri were just as good. Overall a really good team performance and if one was to critisize anyone it would be Clichy and the ring rusty Djourou.

It was good to see a real team that has been built with integrity and patience triumph instead of a cash rich hastily manufactured side who spent a further 100 million this summer and had 100 million pounds of talent sitting on the bench – a message of hope to all well run teams who aspire to compete with the billionnaires.

57 Responses to Sheikh, Rattled and Rolled

  1. hers says:


  2. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    A delicious win that. Cesc & Nascar the stand outs. Best game this year by sheeps-head Song. The clock was turned back to the glory days. Some clattering challenges, in particular YoYo20’s on Tevez. The boyz did everything they could to get the win. And kelsey a special mention must go to Fabianski. Continuity will see him do well IMO. He actually looked like he belonged out there.

    Thanx Mon Ami Wenger, you were great.

  3. Big Raddy says:

    Fine write up Kelsey..

    Our tactics were spot on yesterday. After the sending off we ran them ragged and it was inevitable MC would tire in the last 15m. Well played AW, possession football hurts a 10 man team.

    We won by continuing to commit to the principles of attacking football.

  4. Carlito11 says:

    Hi Kelsey,
    Thanks for the great report- much clearer picture of the game now! I was travelling and only had the live text to watch at the time… The best thing for me from that perspective was our bench yesterday. First time in ages I’ve thought that we really had equally strong and yet diverse options to call on if needed. Things are looking up!

  5. Statics says:

    i dont think anyone would expected songinho would turned into a beast let alone scoring a screamers 2 years ago..
    and fabianski, wow! if he continue his performance like this he will definitely battle it out with joe hart for the best goalkeeper in EPL!

  6. kelsey says:

    Morning all : Enjoy.

    Even if I say it myself the last paragraph in my post is so relevant.

  7. Rasp says:


    Great analysis kelsey. We can only come out of that game with positives. I am having to restrain myself from getting too excited over Fabianski as I don’t want to put a hex on him – but he was excellent yesterday.

  8. Big Raddy says:

    Ramsey, Diaby, Wilshere, Vermalen, Vela and RvP not even on the bench. At last we have squad depth

  9. tommystout says:

    excellent report kelsey, im still buzzing.
    Song was my MOM,he was awesome.
    Fab2 i’m trying not going to overboard,but fair play to him, he’s looking like that confident young keeper of 2 years ago that i was getting so excited about.

  10. Morning all

    Thank you kelsey for a great post and you’re right it is important to remember the economics of the two teams.

  11. kelsey says:

    Thanks Rasp.

    If you look at the replay Fabianski looked fully composed, distributed the ball well,and did what we have been missing for a long time,a keeper who commanded his area.
    City hadn’t lost at home for 3 years, and on current form,not the easiest place to stand in goal.His reflexes are superb, and I can’t see Wenger dropping him.
    All keepers make howlers and invariably they are high lighted more than saves.
    I thought Fab was shot, but credit to him,he can only go upwards from here.

  12. SharkeySure says:

    Nice write up Kels, and you are so right to mention the contrast in City’s monies spent and our organic growth.

    Add the players that Raddy listed and its a pretty scary squad that we have assembled.

  13. kelsey – its interesting that you say that you can’t see Wenger dropping Fabianski – Almunias elbow injury must be very bad. If Wenger hadn’t come out in the summer and said he didn’t know which was his no 1 we know that Fab2 would be dropped even on this form. Good for Fab2 he’s shown what he’s made of.

  14. Rasp says:

    Hi kelsey,

    I was disgusted at the home game against Brum when the guys sitting in front of me applauded sarcastically every time Fab2 touched the ball. Fab2 could yet become a cult hero a la EE.

  15. tommystout says:

    alanbrazil is a joke, hes calling 4 the last man & off red card rule 2 be changed now. hes the worst antigooner on talkshite…

  16. Tim says:

    Fabianski is growing before our eyes with every passing game. Without his first-minute save, we would have been in trouble.

    Although we were a long way from our best in the first half, I was pleased with the commitment of our boys to match City physically, even if it meant conceding fouls and bookings.

    Nasri was excellent. His finishing is clinical- that’s seven goals in seven games now – and he worked hard right to the end to set up Bendtner’s goal. Apparently he completed 65 passes in City’s half yesterday, second-highest in the Premier League this season. That pretty much says it all, I think.

  17. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    I was singing to myself “What a waste of money” when I’m sure the away fans started singing the same thing 🙂


    That was totally humiliating for man city. To spend all that dosh & they won’t win a thing this season either.

  18. kelsey says:

    Why are Sky so anti Arsenal.

    During the whole commentary they were unashamedly City biased and then after the game during the analysis they did an about turn.Hypocrites the lot of them.

  19. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Great write up. Thanks.
    I wish, I wish, I wish that we were playing Utd away this afternoon. That is how good I feel today.

  20. lawal says:

    i thought paul mearson said we can’t win the match if man c used 4-5-1, and to make it more interestin mancini followed d same line. And we won the match that was against us on all perspectve. I am had my best weekend yesterday

  21. charybdis1966 says:

    Morning all, good day to be a gooner. The way the other results went we had to win to keep up and a pleasing side effect of our win was to push the Spuds out of the Top 4.
    My next game(the bar codes on Nov 7) could be a “first half only” affair as I have to be in Slough by 4.
    Dam double-booking!

  22. MOTD 2 were also only interested in talking about Citeh, they hardly gave us any credit!!!!!!!!!!! Whats that all about – like it was our fault that Citeh were down to 10 men.

    A top side should still be able to play with 10 – we usually don’t have a problem 😉

  23. SharkeySure says:

    “Even if they were 15 and we were 11 we would still go and win,” he said.”

    Whilst that is was Fabregas said, it is clear that he meant that Arsenal would still GO AND TRY TO WIN !!!

    Lets see how far the media run with this one!!

  24. Hi chary – fancy double-booking!!!!!! We’ll meet for a drink before, hopefully by then Fabianski will well and truly be our no 1 😉

  25. charybdis1966 says:

    To be honest Peachy, I couldn’t really say no to the thing in Slough, Chary major and Chary minor are taking part in a little play there for Diwali so it would’ve been bad form to turn them down, in any case I didn’t remember till after I said yes!
    In any case half a game is better than no game otherwise I’d have to give the tickets to my Kiwi brother in law(who is a mank, yuck) and his 2 boys.

  26. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Leaving at half time, eh? If we are winning, you will look like the very worst type of prawn sandwicher, and if losing, like the very worst type of doomer!
    Still, can’t miss the Charybdislets in their play, and I’m certainly with you on that one.

  27. MickyDidIt89 says:

    So, we are above Utd. Wonder what SAF is up to. Sitting there in his Y-fronts and wife beater, dribbling into his empty tumbler! Oh, happy days.

  28. charybdis1966 says:

    Mdi89 – that’s how I figure it, half a game watched by 3 gooners is better than a a whole game watched by a mank +2.
    I reckon ole bacon face will have to retire the hair dryer now – anyone in the squad can just pull a Shrek and get away with it now.
    End of an era methinks.

  29. Anyone notice the Barca rant on yesterdays post?

  30. Ignore my last comment, I must have imagined it, going to lay down now 😦

  31. kelsey says:

    I binned it 😉

  32. ok – thought I was going mad kelsey – well done, thanks 😉

  33. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Can you explain the dismembered doll’s limbs avatar? Very spooky

  34. terry says:

    guys song was not the best but still did u guys see fab dropping back when song went up…

    thats called covering for each other.

  35. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    Well I’ve skimmed through the comments here & refreshingly its nice to see positive vibe coming from, IMO, the best Arsenal win in years.

  36. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    Who’s Next

  37. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    …….& Rangers dumped on that Irish team Celtic. Good weekends footy for me.

  38. charybdis1966 says:

    Hi Gnarley, it’s the bar codes(aka Newcastle)away in the fizzy Cup on Wednesday.

  39. Big Raddy says:

    Shame we got the Barcodes away. A home game would have allowed us to play the kids team and win, whereas now we will be forced to play a half decent side to get a result.

    Still that is a mere faraway shadow on a bright sunny Arsenal day

  40. Neamman says:

    I know you didnt mean it negatively Kelsey but just an observation in general, certainly not directed at you ….. honest!! :>)
    Its 3-0 away at a big team… lets not criticize anyone!!!!!

    Gnarley George

    Wasnt yesterday a great day.. Follow Follow

    It reminds me of the old song BR will remember!!

    Hello Hello we are the North Bank Boys
    Hello Hello we make a lot of noise
    and if you are a Tottenham fan
    Surrender or you die
    We will follow the Arsenal!!

  41. rockylives says:

    Good write-up Kelsey (and great headline!).
    The win was just what we needed. I thought Fabregas had the air of a man who was determined to win that game and he played and led like a real captain.
    Fab2 was excellent but I’ll still reserve judgement for a month or two. We need to see a long run of safe, assured game from him, but at least he has got his game back on track.

    Interesting to speculate where Citeh will end up this year. The money they’ve spent is positively obscene, but they certainly didn’t gel like a team yesterday.

  42. kelsey says:

    Neamman, no offence taken.

    rocky, regarding Fabregas.he hardly ever shows much emotion, but yesterday especially when he came off, he waived to the fans in a way which made me believe what Wenger had said a few days before, that Cesc will be with us for at least another couple of seasons.Just a hunch, that he is more committed than some thought he was.

  43. Red Arse says:

    Well done Kelsey, you wrote that the way I felt, so to speak. Excellent game and result. 🙂

    Hi Everyone!

    Peaches is right. The only thing that tried to rain on my parade was this constant harking on about the sending off.

    Clearly it was all our fault that the Citeh lummox made a stupid lunge in the penalty area.

    Mancini claimed that but for the sending off, Citeh would have beaten us easily.He has a point, as did my Aunt Edith who really was my Uncle Bob. Such Bollox! 🙂

  44. 26may1989 says:

    Fantastic result and a very satisfying performance yesterday – in part because there is clearly so much more in the tank: not only did we have some great players unavailable, the frequency with which we lost possession in the first hour made me think our performance wasn’t our best. And yet we still deserved our margin of victory (flattering scoreline, my arse).

    Shitty fans have been whining about the referee, saying Febregas should have had two yellows. What?! I thought Clattenburg had a reasonable game (and got all of the big calls right) but how many fouls did Kompany have to commit before getting a late yellow?? Djourou by comparison was carded for his first foul, and that was on the halfway line.

    And of course that kid at CB had to be sent off, as clear a red card as you could want to see. The question is why the hell did Mancini pick a 19 year old playing his 5th PL game for a match against the league’s best passing side, when he had experienced CB options (Lescott, Richards, Boateng)? Ridiculous decision and City paid for it.

    Lovely to see Fabianski show he does have talent. Personally, I doubt he will make it as our keeper, as I’m sure we haven’t seen the end of his errors, but yesterday would certainly have been a lot harder were he not on top form. Shame the same can’t be said of Djourou – come back Koscielny, please.

    Fantastic performances from Nasri, Denilson, Song and Fabregas and Arshavin, Chamakh and Bendtner all did well.

    Emmanuel Ade-who?

  45. kelsey says:

    26th, that is a post on it’s own.

  46. kelsey says:

    Has anyone seen London ?

  47. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Its gone?

  48. Hi Micky – its chocolate legs!!!!!!!

  49. London must be away on a holiday, he couldn’t keep away from us for this long 🙂

  50. Duke says:

    Well said. But we ave 2 be cautious

  51. gnarleygeorge9 says:


    IMO, that team that took the field is now the blue print for the future. I remember when one of our former tennis players Pat Rafter never lived up to much for years, then in a particular Davis Cup round he just clicked, he ended up winning back to back US Opens, etc.

    All 11 players, plus subs would now trust each other, & inturn, individually, know what they each need to do to get the results as a team in a big match situation. The players still to come back in now have pressure on them to perform when given the chance. I don’t think they should be given direct passage into the “best” starting line up when confirmed fit.

    I guess its the fans who get the most out of the result, which after 5 years of frustration, is great.
    Arsenal have crafted out 2 great results this season, & IMO there are more to come. Bring it on I say 😀

  52. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    People love to analyse/judge individual players performances after a result like this. They give, say, a rating out of ten, but in reality that means sod all. Its the value of a player to the team, the partnerships that are formed, etc. Some saw Big Johan’s game as average, but there is no denying the fact that he was invaluable in that team situation, & will only get better with match practice.

    A champion team, will more often than not beat a team of champions. & that is exactly what happened with man city.

  53. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    In the long run, I would rather a bloke like sheeps head Song who runs all day, who never gives up & never gets injured, than some one who is an “in again out again” type.

    Blimey after all my splurge, I hope The Arsenal get over the Geordies this week 😆

    At the end of the day, & just want The Arsenal to win, win & win some more. For the first time in ages I’m feeling some trust in Arsene 😛 Chamoneeeeeeeeee!!!!

  54. charybdis1966 says:

    Let’s hope so Gnarley, after the disappointments of the last few seasons I just want our lads to do their best and I’ll sit back and enjoy the ride.
    For all Song’s faults he is, as you say,less prone to injury than most and can be relied upon to put in a shift.

  55. Morning

    Gnarley I agree with you about that being a blue-print team, much rather have Cesc, Song and Denilson in there starting than a mid that includes Diaby. Maybe AW was giving Diaby a chance to prove his starting berth knowing all the time that he had the ever reliable Denilson to use instead.

  56. Rasp says:


    New post ……..

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