City Park the Bus

After enduring the previous home league game against the Middle Eastlands crowd from the comfort of the North Bank I anticipated something slightly different this time around. Surely the array of attacking talent that Citeh had been remorselessly acquiring would mean they would not play like a lot of away teams and sit back for a draw from the outset ?

Bereft of two of their more creative additions, gooners must have feared the worse and sadly a defensive approach was favoured with a midfield of De Jong, Y Toure, Barry and Milner with the latter (to my eyes) yet to justify the reputation/hype he had gathered before he joined Citeh.

Having said all that we are well used to “Park the bus” teams and despite the 13 shots(8 on target) we had as opposed to 5 from Citeh, none of which were on target, the onus is on the home team to break down whatever form of defence is presented to us. Mancini was seen ushering his players back whenever they strayed too far forward, showing an approach typical of a Serie A manger who favoured “catenaccio” as his preferred system.

Yes, we hit the post on numerous occasions and the frustrations of a game similar to the CSKA game at the Grove a few seasons back surfaced however perhaps something radically different may have been called for in the last 15 minutes or so – perhaps throw a defender(Djourou maybe?) forward and bombard the Citeh penalty area with shots/crosses? Un-Arsenal like maybe, however it may be because it felt like a goal was imminent, especially in the first half, that it was right to persist with the initial strategy.

Sagna’s late sending off was perplexing. He showed as little composure when being slide tackled by Zabaleta as he did plenty of cool during the Bowyer assaults on him in the previous game at St Andrew’s – he was due a break but it would have preferably been at our choosing, so he misses the next two Cup games and away to West Ham in the league.

Looking back with the benefit of other results perhaps not risking all for a win, meant avoiding defeat against a title rival was worth it with the spuds and The (London)Chavs coming a cropper on their travels.

Sadly the undeserving recipient of the benefits of last night’s results would have raised yet another (not so) wee dram of his finest single malt and smiled all over his whiskey-sodden face.

Written by charybdis1966

Some player ratings courtesy of Big Raddy………

Fabianski. Had nothing to do and did it perfectly. 10
Sagna Crossing poor and a point deducted for the red card 6
Djourou Fine display, covering any defensive mistakes 8
Koscielny Not much to do. Out of position a few times 7
Clichy Good defensively but crossing poor 7.5
Song Bossed the midfield and has sublime skills 9
Cesc Great 1st half. Faded as MC sat deeper 8
JW Same as Fab4. What a prospect 8
Nasri Just couldn’t get in the game. His battle with Richards was great 7
Theo Very involved but kept choosing the wrong option. Needs to try shooting at the near post. 6
RvP Unlucky not to score. A busy night. He is getting there … 8

AA Hardly the impact sub we were hoping for. Must try harder 5
Bendtner Tried harder than Arshavin 6

 

83 Responses to City Park the Bus

  1. Morning,

    Thanks to chary for penning these early thoughts on the game at short notice. We have a match report in the pipeline but the continental time difference has caught our correspondent out.

  2. charybdis1966 says:

    Hi Peachy, I’m severely conflicted with the result, annoyed to drop 2 but mindful that things could have been worse.
    What if the spuds had won – they would have been only a point behind. Eek !

  3. Rasp says:

    Morning chary,

    We have to look at the positives. It was an excellent and brave perfomance by us and a cowardly one by them. We don’t have to blame the ref or the team selection, it was the bloody woodwork that had it in for us this time 😕

  4. charybdis1966 says:

    Hi Raspers, yes we can see the positives:
    We have 17 more games to go, of which 9 are at home only 8 away, while ManUre have 10 away games(of their 18 left) – of those 10 they have the Chavs, us and the Spuds to go.
    Hopefully the “Refs-in-ManUre’s-pockets” effect will be felt less for the remainder of the season.

  5. Rasp says:

    Agreed chary, the trouble is that Lady Luck, knows nothing about football, lives in Surrey and supports manure it seems.

  6. king gooner says:

    they aren’t called the red DEVILS for nothing-with the luck they get it’s plain to see old beezelbub has them as his favourite son.either that or old red nose has sold his soul to him.wouldn’t suprise me.still GOD IS A GOONER & eventually we’ll slay the evil empire!

  7. Big Raddy says:

    True rasp.

    I fancy some ratings, not something I normally do …..

    Fabianski. Had nothing to do and did it perfectly. 10
    Sagna Crossing poor and a point deducted for the red card 6
    Djourou Fine display, covering any defensive mistakes 8
    Koscielny Not much to do. Out of position a few times 7
    Clichy Good defensively but crossing poor 7.5
    Song Bossed the midfield and has sublime skills 9
    Cesc Great 1st half. Faded as MC sat deeper 8
    JW Same as Fab4. What a prospect 8
    Nasri Just couldn’t get in the game. His battle with Richards was great 7
    Theo Very involved but kept choosiing the wrong option. Needs to try shooting at the near post. 6
    RvP Unlucky not to score. A busy night. He is getting there … 8

    AA Hardly the impact sub we were hoping for. Must try harder 5
    Bendtner Tried harder than Arshavin 6

  8. Gooner in Exile says:

    I’ve been having a debate with a City fan on a non football forum this morning, he is more one eyed than most.

    He has tried to convince me that not losing to title rivals is more important than beating them, and used the example of Liverpool beating ManUre twice in 2008/09 but still not winning the title. Kind of disproved his own theory as despite losing those games ManUre went on to beat Liverpool to the title. So in fact not losing is not important.

    As for our performance it was positive but towards the end we started to tire and didn’t have enough to get over the finish line. I do think reverting to a linger ball would have played into City’s hands better to make tired legs run.

    People have commented on the strength of the squad but I dont think our subs gave us anything different or any new impetus. Probably would have left Theo on but that’s not my decision.

  9. charybdis1966 says:

    King G – it’s been proved beyond all reasonable doubt that old whiskey breath sold his soul to satan in 1999, but I agree the forces of light and goodness wil/must triumph this time.

    LOL, Radders – Fab2, ipso fato, did nothing right last night.

  10. Rasp says:

    Thanks Raddy, I’ve added your ratings to the post.

    I agree that the really good news is that RvP is returning to his best. That shot from outside the box is one aspect of our play that has been missing and required a magnificent save to keep it out of the top corner.

  11. charybdis1966 says:

    GiE- it could well have done, but I go by the maxim of “Do what your opponent least expects or prefers”, I think it may have been worth at least mixing things up a bit in the last 10-15 mins.

  12. Rasp says:

    bluevalentine was very gracious last night with his comments, there’s not much evidence of the other City fans today who were so outraged by our post on Monday.

    Their only defence is that 1 point is a good result at the Emirates – obviously £200m doesn’t buy you much these days and entertaining the paying punters/TV audience does not figure in their priorities.

  13. charybdis1966 says:

    Raspers, it was always as obvious as night follows day that only a Citeh win would bring them back here, to gloat, of course.
    Any other result would mean they would wind their necks in.

  14. Smith14 says:

    Hello all, Happy New Year.

    I think we did well last night, given the circumstances. But for the width of a post and RVP having longer studs in, we could have been 3-0 up quite early on. Sadly, it was one of those nights.

    I know this is an Arsenal blog and it’s healthy to focus on what we did or didn’t do, but I cant help but be totally disgusted by Man City. It’s an often made point but £200m to assemble the most defensive side I can remember is unbelieveably depressing. A stat on F365 this morning said that City have failed to score in any of their last 7 matches against the rest of the top 4.

    I know every team has their method of collecting points but it’s objectinable that a team with that funding should adopt such a reactionary and boring style. No interest in playing Football. Mancini said that “not every team can play like Arsenal”. Maybe so but, if Bolton and Blackpool can attack with little to no transfer budget, then I’m sure City can too.

  15. Rasp says:

    Great comment Smith14,

    I agree that Manicini should hang his head in shame or take some pills to increase the size of his cojones. He is not managing a team in Serie A, he’s in the Premiership – acknowledged as the most exciting league in the world, and he drags it down to that level. Did any team ever win the league by playing conservatively? How much more than £200m would he like to spend to feel secure in playing attacking football against a top 4 rival? I wonder if Sheik Mansour thinks that mere CL qualification is the most realistic return for his investment.

  16. Smith14 says:

    I think it’s also worth noting that it isn’t just City fans that suggest that this tactic is ok, it’s also large sections of the media. Lee Dixon spoke utter nonsense last night on MOTD. He suggested that City were right to set up a solid midfield and hit us on the break. Maybe they would have been justified in doing that if that’s what they’d done but they didn’t. They attacked us probably 2 or 3 times in the game. For the last half hour they were pumping the ball clear, to no one, just so they could buy the time to get their defensive shape back.

    It tells you all you need to know when you look at their bench. 7 substitutes and not one of them was a striker. I hope Dzeko is good at defending corners because he’s not going to have much fun playing up front for that lot.

  17. charybdis1966 says:

    Smith14 – message to Mancini: “No guts, no glory!”

  18. Rasp says:

    🙂 chary, the ballboys should throw him a pair.

    OK, that’s enough City bashing – they’ll be happy and couldn’t care a less about our condemnation of their tactics.

    The good news I hope to read today should be that Nasri has signed a new long term contract. The last time we had this sort of chemistry and understanding between the midfielders, we sold/had to sell players and the balance was lost.

  19. RockyLives says:

    Thanks for the report Chary. As you say, the main beneficiary was Old Purple Nose. However, I can’t see ManUre’s luck lasting. Their squad is weak and they’re only two injuries (to any of Berba, Vidic, Plug and Rooney) from being in real trouble.

    What are we going to do about Arshavin? My pre-season pick for EPL Player of the Year seems to be going backwards…

  20. Rasp says:

    Hi Rocky,

    Yes AA is becoming a problem. I won’t have it that he lacks desire or is lazy. He’s an oddball, brilliant one minute ineffectual the next.

    I am slightly more worried about Chamakh. I suspect that he may be more than ‘tired’. AA also had trouble adjusting to the pace and pressure of the Prem in his first season so I shall put his lack of appearances for us lately down to that and hope AW can find a way to get him on the pitch with RvP (who I think is a must play at the moment)

  21. Gooner in Exile says:

    So do we save this starting XI for the league and forget about the other competitions? A mixture of Youth and Second String should be enough to cope with Ipswich and Leeds but what about Barca?

    Not sure the first team can fight on 4 fronts for rest of the season which do we choose?

  22. Rasp says:

    I agree GiE, we must put maximum effort into the league and the CL and make sure we have enough to get past Ipswich to reach the CC final.

    Some will think it heresy, but I’d put the FA cup bottom of our priorities.

  23. Neamman says:

    I had to agree with Steve McManaman lat night. Why bring Bendtner on and put him on the wing? He should be in the box disrupting!!!
    Apart from that a good display and with a little luck we would have won it. The ratings were spot on!

  24. Rasp says:

    There are some good City blog sites, but this one takes the biscuit – apparently we were the ones who were ‘a disgrace’ last night.

    http://thisisourcitymanchester.blogspot.com/2011/01/arsenal-are-disgrace-and-embarrassment.html

  25. RockyLives says:

    Rasp
    My first thought abut the FA Cup was that it wouldn’t be so bad to go out on Saturday. But then you think about momentum, about unbeaten streaks etc…
    Ideally I would like us to put out a ‘Wigan 11’ against Leeds but still win.
    Play a mix of the first team and second team against Ipswich to get to Wembley. Play our strongest team in the CC Final (with maybe 2 or 3 second stringers like Chesney and Chamakh).
    Best possible team for the CL. I know we’re massive outsiders against Barca, but if we could beat them (and it will definitely be closer than last year) imagine the belief that would instil in the team. Why will it be closer than last year? Because in the second leg last year we were without our best player – Cesc. If they had been without their best player – Messi – they would probably still have won but it would not have been so one-sided.

  26. London says:

    Good read Chary.

    I think the solution to AA has already been found: he comes on for Walcott if things get tight. Walcott is poor working in tight spaces and when teams show no adventure, like last night, going no further that their own half things obviously get congested which suits AA far better. This also solves the seeming problem that AA does not last ninety minutes but can be brilliant for fifteen.

  27. Rasp says:

    Good points Rocky, I’m in total agreement. Apart from anything else, the home games in the FA cup will add to the coffers so I’m for us putting out the best second string side we can muster up to the quarters and then go for it if we’re still in the competition.

  28. Big Raddy says:

    Strange that we are so positive and yet have 5 points less than at a similar stage last season.

    Given those points we would be top now!

  29. charybdis1966 says:

    Thanks London, and I see your point about Theo’s relative lack of effectiveness when space is at a premium. The meerkat seems to thrive on working openings in tight areas but the problem will be to squeeze 90 minutes worth of effort into the time 15(or whatever) minutes of sub time he gets.
    My fear would be he may still coast in the time he gets and only “do something” at the same frequency.

  30. RockyLives says:

    BR
    It’s the intangibles that make us feel more positive, despite having fewer points than last year. The feeling that the team is growing up a bit, that we’re (a teeny tiny bit) better defensively, that some of our best players are in sparkling form and that we’re not suffering quite so badly from injuries. (Oh, that last one is a tangible, isn’t it… – but you get my point, hopefully).

    Btw: loved your Fabianski rating – and Chary’s riposte 🙂

  31. RockyLives says:

    Chary
    What’s worrying about the Meerkat is the way he gives away possession. He’d been barely on the field for a minute last night when he tried a silly flick/pass and gave the ball to Citeh not far outside our penalty area.

    Mind you, when he did that, it made me realise how absolutely excellent Cesc, JW and BAS (Big Alex Song) had been throughout the match.

  32. Rasp says:

    Can there be any truth to the story linking us to Samba? He ticks a couple of boxes – big, strong, (french) good with his head (doubles as a CF??) but I haven’t seen enough of him to know if he could play Wengerball.

    You have to admire his morals when he asks to leave because he feels the treatment of the manager is unfair; gets stripped of the captaincy and is then reinstated when he pledges to give his best for the club but still wants to leave. Does anyone know how much he would cost?

  33. charybdis1966 says:

    You’re right there Raspers, Samba is the typical Wenger purchase, French(too many to mention), able to play in more than one position(Grimy, Eboue, Vivas etc) and cheaper due to one reason or another, in this case he wants to leave(Gallas), normally it’s because they are at a discounted cost due to a questionable injury record(Overmars) – or even atnil cost a la Bitchslap.
    I’ve read his cost at around the £9-£10m mark.

  34. Big Raddy says:

    I have always liked Samba, he scores a few as well. Could the Hangeland deal be resurrected?

    Perhaps we should have kept Swiss Phil?

  35. RockyLives says:

    Not so keen on Hangeland – he’s looked pretty vulnerable in some games I’ve seen.
    Still fancy Mertesacker (in a footbally sense).

  36. Big Raddy says:

    RL.If we are to sign someone for the short-term whilst TV recovers then he has to have PL experience otherwise there could be a settling in period. This rules out Mertesacker.

    Kolo looked very good yesterday!!

    The problem is that whoever we sign will be at best 4th choice upon TV’s return.

    I cannot see us buying anyone.

  37. Gooner in Exile says:

    Samba is also under 25 I believe. Is surprisingly useful with the ball at his feet and you feel could deputise for Song in defensive midfield, or tie up the midfield in a tight game. Also would make a good partner for Djouro at the back in the continued absence of TV.

    By the way as others have said just how good was Djouro last night? Growing with every game IMO. there were a couple of moments where we gifted possession in our own half but he was so quick to stifle the threat.

    Forgot to mention how bigger welcome both he and Bendtner got from the St Andrews crowd, obviously both impressed when there on loan.

    Bendtner still looks like he is carrying sone extra weight would be good to see him slim down a little, he is definitely not a winger!

  38. valenciangooner says:

    @Rasp. You said you wanted good news abour Nasri’s contract extension, and I’m certain everyone shares that, but I’ve just read a piece on ESPN.co.uk where his agent says “he’s keeping his options open “. It’s not encouraging – or am I being negative here ? Maye I was just being naive thinking it would all be a formality .

  39. Red Arse says:

    GIE,

    Samba is 27 in March 2011.

    I don’t think Djourou has played for Brum on loan. Were you thinking of Muamba who had a spell there before being transferred?

    Bendy is not a winger, as you say, but tho’ I don’t want to incur BR’s wrath, he is not a centre forward either! 🙂

  40. Red Arse says:

    ValG,

    I read that Barca are sniffing around for Samir, whose contract expires in 2012.

    It’s probably just his agent huffing and puffing to strengthen his hand during negotiations. Normal stuff!

  41. Big Raddy says:

    RA. Let’s hope they just give him whatever he wants. To lose a player like Nasri and potentially Cesc at the same time would be inforgiveable

  42. Red Arse says:

    Hi BR 🙂

    I agree with you, but there has been a lot of talk about Hazard being available in the Summer, and he has been linked with Arsenal and Barca too.

    Barca cannot buy everyone even tho’ they are still linked with Cesc, but he seems to be content to put his head down and get on with his Arsenal career.

    I suspect Samir will eventually re-sign for us but he and his agent are just finessing the salary package upwards.

  43. charybdis1966 says:

    Radders/RA – the cynics might say his rapid recent improvement could be due to playing for an improved contract or to put himself in the shop window.

  44. charybdis1966 says:

    To be even more paranoid, does anyone see a parallel between summer 2008 and summer 2011 building up? For Flamini and Hleb read Cesc and Nasri.

  45. valenciangooner says:

    RA. Yes , I read that too but I also read to-day , here in one of the Spanish sports “newspapers” that they are going to make an offer for both Cesc and Nasri ! We read almost daily how ‘barca are in serious financial trouble and then to-day money is no problem !

    Having said that , reading the sports papers here reminds me of reading the Beano when I was a lad .

  46. RockyLives says:

    Thanks for that VG. It’s great to get a Spanish perspective on things (even via The Beano!)

  47. RockyLives says:

    Rasp, Peaches
    I have made a small deposit in the drafts box.
    Hmmm, now that I’ve written it, that phrase strikes me as a little unsettling…

  48. Gooner in Exile says:

    RA according to wiki JD spent 13 games at Birmingham on loan during 2007.

    Also wiki reveals he is to turn 24 in January, seems like he us older as he has been with us so long. Great maturity and starting to come of age.

    Take your correction on Samba I know I had seen his age recently and was surprised he was relatively younger than I thought. 26 for a CB is a good age and years left ahead of him.

  49. Red Arse says:

    Rasp,

    I have just read your request, yesterday p.m., for info on the possible takeover of Arsenal by either Kroenke or Usmanov, and what the situation would be if the offer “failed”, I will naturally have to charge you my standard fee for advising you on this complex legislation. 🙂

    The Companies Act 2006, has a section relating to the Takeover Panel and it’s Rules. V. long winded and complex.

    If you (or anyone else) have the stomach for it, I have set out below, that part that I think you were interested in. Otherwise don’t bother! Seriously!! 🙂

    Companies Act 2006
    Takeover Panel Rules

    RULE 9

    9.1 WHEN A MANDATORY OFFER IS REQUIRED AND WHO IS
    PRIMARILY RESPONSIBLE FOR MAKING IT:

    Except with the consent of the Panel, when:—
    (a) any person acquires, whether by a series of transactions over a period of time or not, an interest in shares which (taken together with shares in which persons acting in concert with him are interested) carry
    30% or more of the voting rights of a company, he must make a mandatory offer to acquire all the shares in a company.

    Rule 9.4

    1. Where an offer lapses pursuant to Rule 12.1(a) or (b)

    If an offer under Rule 9 lapses pursuant to Rule 12.1(a) or (b), the obligation under the Rule does not lapse and, accordingly, if thereafter the merger is
    allowed, the offer must be reinstated on the same terms and at not less than the same price as soon as practicable.
    If the merger is prohibited, the offer cannot be made and the Panel will consider whether, if there is no order to such effect, to require the offeror to reduce the percentage of shares carrying voting rights in which it and persons acting in concert with it are interested to below 30% or to its original level before the obligation to offer was incurred, if this was 30% or more.
    The Panel would normally expect an offeror whose
    offer has lapsed pursuant to Rule 12.1(a) or (b) to proceed with all due diligence before the Competition Commission or the European Commission.
    (See also Rule 9.7.) However, if, with the consent of the Panel and within a limited period, an offeror reduces the percentage of shares carrying voting
    rights in which it and persons acting in concert with it are interested to below 30%, or to its original level before the obligation to offer was incurred if that was 30% or more, the Panel will regard the obligation as having lapsed.

    If you got this far …… Well Done!! 🙂

  50. Big Raddy says:

    Valenciangooner. Have you ever lived in California???

  51. mickydidit89 says:

    Hi all,
    One point I don’t think anyone has mentioned, is that in previous seasons against the likes of Chelsea and a team like City, the term “out muscled” would always have been rolled out. Now when I looked carefully at their mob last night, I did notice many with alarmingly big necks and thick chests, and yet we certainly were not “out muscled”.

  52. Red Arse says:

    GIE,

    KD played 27 times in all competitions, for our first team during 2006/7. He payed only 3 times in 2007/8 before getting injured.

    He may have gone to Brum for his recovery period, but not to my knowledge.

    I am sure that someone on here will set us right! 🙂

    (I looked it up on the official site) 🙂

  53. RockyLives says:

    Micky – very good point. The pundits are using that stick much less often to beat us with.

    Another point – I thought there were two moments where Theo could have won a penalty if he had gone down easily (a la Gerrard or Rooney). I’m partly proud that the lad is not a cheat like those two, and partly gutted that he didn’t go down and win us the pen.

  54. mickydidit89 says:

    RA,
    I entered your piece into Microsoft Translate and it said “eh?”.

  55. Red Arse says:

    Good point Micky, except for Clichy who was “out-muscled” by skinny little Johnson, oddly enough.

    Wasn’t SingaSong immense last night. A star! 🙂

  56. Red Arse says:

    Micky,

    Microsoft Translate? Wassat?

    Don’t it speak Accountanteese, or nuffin? 🙂

  57. Irishgunner says:

    Evening all.

    Any Gooner news of note today?

  58. Red Arse says:

    Hi Irish,

    Lots of stuff on NewsNow, but all rubbish I think! 🙂

  59. Irishgunner says:

    Hiya RA.

    I hardly look at that anymore cos its usually cluttered with crap, and the odd ray of light like our good selves.

    I see Nasri is off to Barcelona 🙄

  60. Red Arse says:

    Irish,

    ValG mentioned the Nasri rumour being reported in Spain, together with their desire for Cesc.

    When you then add the Belgian agent for Hazard saying they want him too, we could end up with more Barca players than fans. 🙂 Rubbish I feel!

  61. Red Arse says:

    GIE,

    I delved further into AFC’s JD “trivia” and he did indeed go out on loan to Birmingham City and Etoile Carouge FC. (who they?) 🙂

    Apparently he now lives in a former asylum. (?) That’s what it says.

  62. RockyLives says:

    Redders
    Isn’t that where you used to live?

  63. Irishgunner says:

    Definite rubbish RA.

    If Almunia had 5 good games in a row he’d be off to Barca as well.

  64. Red Arse says:

    Rocky,

    What makes you say that?

  65. mickydidit89 says:

    Assuming, and I think its fair to assume, that the Spanish economy goes “Greek” big time, how would that effect Barca?

  66. Red Arse says:

    Micky,

    That’s a big call. The EU cannot permit Spain to go “tits up”. It would destabilise the whole of the Eurozone and pull all of us into the mire, or “merdre” as the French would have it!

    If such a calamity occurred, then Barca could not help but be a part of it!

  67. Red Arse says:

    I am off now, but Rocky your non-response to my serious question has been noted.

  68. mickydidit89 says:

    RA,
    I know you have gone, but I beg to differ. They cannot bail another country out with money they do not have. I think the Euro will go this year!
    I actually came rushing back like a turd of hurtles, as I forgot to say thanks to Chary for the post. Most rude.
    Its offski for me now. Offski.

  69. RockyLives says:

    Hello Redders
    Ah, the joy of blogging while officially being at work! I had to go and do some of the day job for a couple of hours.
    It was only meant to be a jokey reference to our previous badinage about Cloud Cuckoo Land. No offence meant.

  70. valenciangooner says:

    Big Raddy: Sorry for the delayed response but I was watching Villa Real v Valencia , Copa Del Rey . No, to my ever having lived in California question . My mind is now working overtime on that !!

  71. charybdis1966 says:

    V gooner – I’m guessing Radders may have been alluding to a suburb/area of Los Angeles called Valencia when he asked that question.
    Only my guess though.

  72. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    Top post chary, although I may have given Sheeps Head Song 9.5, he was really, really good. He has a big heart.

    Also cheers re the cricket. I wouldn’t really wind up any poms out here, poms love me 😉 But I guess constant shitty songs about how we are shit as a country, etc, combined with the fact that we really are shit @ cricket has worn me down.

    Anyway, once again & for the last time, well done England your cricketers did you proud. But, every dog has his day 😆

  73. charybdis1966 says:

    Cheers Gnarley(and MDi89), I believe the ratings were by Radders – I just wrote the waffle.

    It was a bit like S Sure’s post by candle light the other day, written at short notice.

    How can I possibly refuse a damsel(Peachy) in distress needing a post ? 🙂

  74. Well done gnarley, thats the spirit 😆

    Have to agree with you about Song, he was immense last night. I think the player rating were done by Raddy actually, I’ll just go back and check.

  75. Oooops caught out, don’t even ask chary but thanks for getting us out of a jam this morning.

  76. RockyLives says:

    Gnarley, your dogs had a lot more than a day! Dominating cricket for the best part of a generation is quite an achievement.

    Song was immense. What’s interesting is how some of the key players are coming into form at the same time – Cesc. Song, Djourou, Theo, even RvP was showing encouraging signs last night that he’s found his shooting boots.

  77. Hi Rocky 🙂

    No-one has mentioned it but the atmosphere was dreadful last night, couldn’t get any singing going at all 😦

    I love the Theo van Nasregas formation – long may it last.

  78. charybdis1966 says:

    Happy to help Peachy. 😉

  79. RockyLives says:

    Hi Peaches
    That’s disturbing for a game of such importance and particularly with the dynamic start we made.
    From the TV there seemed to be a lot of generalised roaring in those early stages but it did seem quite after that, with the occasional bout of ‘Come On Arsenal’.

  80. We hardly sang ‘by far the greatest team’!!!!! I don’t know what to make of it, it was as if Chelsea was really important and City wasn’t – quite bizarre.

    Vieira got a good cheer though when he was warming up 😉

  81. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    Cheers all 😎

  82. ryandanielwood says:

    Late arrival to this post, just wanted to throw some support out there to the frustrated AA’ers.

    All top comments I feel as well, Djourou and Song were fantastic. It’s a pity Theo snatched at the woodwork effort. But it says it all for a night like that. 😦

  83. Rasp says:

    New post ………

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