The Old Arsenal Returns

When I said to Peaches that I could do the report for this game I thought it would probably be a simple mission. How wrong could I be. As I started watching the game I originally thought that the best way to report it would be to recount the key incidences as they occurred. I soon realised that there were far too many key incidences to recount in chronological order without going into a prolonged report, so I decided to switch to a different mode of report that would look at the game as more of a general synopsis with some specifics when required..

Firstly can I say, that for me, that was a thoroughly entertaining and humdinger of a game that the narrow scoreline and lack of overall goals doesn’t really reflect. Swansea, as we have found out this season, can play great pass and move technical football. How dare they aspire to this, that is our domain! Once again they did, at certain times, exhibit their ability to pass and move through very tight spaces at a very good technical level in what we like to think is our style of play. This time, however, we elevated our performance levels so that we looked, once again, to be the masters of this style of football.

Early on in the game I thought we took hold of midfield with a combination of the power, pace, and possession that Diaby and Wilshere offer us. We had a few chances but didn’t convert. Always a worrying thing for us Gooners, as we have seen that very situation so many times. If I was to be critical of us in the first half it would be to say that while we got into dangerous positions with possession in the last third, that we didn’t look like we had that final cutting edge. It always seemed like the final critical pass missed the key player by ½ yard. Many would put that down to players not being of the required quality. Personally, at this point, I would still put a lot of it down to players still getting to understand each other and instinctively recognise the movements of their team-mates.

Swansea had a couple of dangerous moments in the first half, the most obvious being when our former player Kyle Bartley headed against the cross bar. We got away with it but always in those situations I ask, was it an attacking move that we could have done nothing about, or could it have been avoided? I am not sure, but I will leave that subject open to debate.

In the second half, for me, we moved onto another level. The level that, for me, we need to be adhering to if we are to achieve what we all want. The passing and movement seemed to step up a level and became faster, more aggressive, and with more players moving around for their team-mates. Santi Cazorla started to step up a gear and influence the game and was superb in the second half, and he is a class player that we are lucky to have. Even more than this though was the performance of a young Englishman that stood out a mile.

untitled

I actually don’t really know what to say about Jack Wilshere. On the one side I don’t want to hype him up too much and create unnecessary pressure, but on the other I feel that we potentially have the next best world class midfielder on our hands. For me he was immense tonight and showed his abilities in both the deeper midfield and offensive midfield roles. He seems to have the ability to play both roles equally effectively. I obviously have my own overall opinions on Jack, but where you see his long term role in midfield I would leave up to you AA’ers to debate.

On to the ratings :

Sczcesny 7

Did what he needed to do effectively

Mertesacker 7

A solid game. On occasions you worry about his lack of pace but he reads the game very well.

Vermaelen 7

His on-field commitment, for me, cannot be criticised. He had a good game today and covered when required. He is excellent at the last ditch tackle.

Sagna 7

After a few “dodgy” performances Mr. Reliable seems to be returning to form.

Gibbs 7

I am a fan of Gibbs and feel he is an excellent full-back. Injury permitting I feel we have a quality FB at our disposal here.

Coquelin 7

I like him. He had some good sections in the game but then seemed to disappear at times, but that is maybe to be expected with a younger player. I still feel that we maybe have another very good AW identified and nurtured player on our hands. I would wait longer before I make a full judgement on his ability as an Arsenal 1st team player.

Diaby 6

He is still not fully up to scratch after an injury lay-off but even so there are times when you can see he brings a different quality to the team. Injury aside I am a big fan of his. He had bright spells in this game but seemed to, understandably, fade in his dynamism as the game went on.

Wilshere 9 and MOTM

As said above, I feel we have the real deal on our hands. His performance tonight was immense both in attack and defence.

Cazorla 8

Slightly quiet first half but in the second stepped up a gear and was, alongside Wilshere, one of the main reasons we started to control the attacking intent in the game.

Giroud 6

I like Giroud but it didn’t quite come of for him today. Having said that I wouldn’t let him go and recognise on another day he could have easily had 2 goals. His link up ability, for me, overcomes the times when he is not scoring goals.

Walcott 6

This is the controversial one. If I said I still feel there is a potential quality striker in him then many of you would pan me. You are maybe right, but I want to see Theo have more time in the advanced role before I make my final judgement. I remember that it took Thierry a while to become regularly lethal for us, and he needed an adjustment period to the strikers role before he started to catch fire, at about the same age as Walcott is now. Theo missed chances tonight but I would also argue that he got himself into good goal-scoring positions that most other players wouldn’t have been able to do.

Substitutions:

Ramsey 6 

When he plays in central areas, like today, he still seems a very decent player to me and was quietly effective when he came on. I still feel he has a potential long term future with us but we need more

Written by GoonerB

186 Responses to The Old Arsenal Returns

  1. arthur mullard's left gonad says:

    Happy Birthday Kelsey.

  2. Gus says:

    Good match report. I agree with most of your ratings. I felt it was a good performance defensively and in attack. The downside is our wastefulness in front of goal.

    Everyone fluffs good chances. Rvp does, messi does. But if Theo is serious about being a striker he shouldnt need 5 chances a game to put one home. He does get in the right positions with intelligent runs. He needs header practice too. Has Theo ever scored a header?

  3. Manthan says:

    Hi Gm, Great Report GonnerB… We had totally dominated the game in the second half… Whilsere was superb Theo missed the good oppurtunity and Sagna is back again with is curling crosses.. Overall we played as a team in second half which is missing this season… If OG could little on this finishing he can be worldclass CF… He is good in the air but shooting is still a little problem But as you said he is dont score the goals he make sure he assists and that is what he did yesterday a good assist and a world class finish by our legend in making… Lecoq should get more game as he is still young and improving…. #Mission Accomplished 😉

  4. Manthan says:

    Gus Rightly said mate… Striker should have good ability in air TITI was strong in air too.. THeo is awfull in the air yesterday was the easiest to score with head he is better in wide then in center he will have oppurnity to shoot from wide but in center we need good strong holding CF like OG or Podoloski……. Hey Gonner B can you please post yesterday’s formation was santi playing wide.. I had seen only highlights so dont know about possesion….

  5. arthur mullard's left gonad says:

  6. Rasp says:

    Thanks GoonerB, I didn’t get to see much of the game except highlights later in the evning, but followed progress on the net as best I could.

    I think progress is the word. If we can slowly build the understanding between the players you allude to then that’s fine with me.

    The odds of the chelski game on Sunday have gone from them being firm favourites to evens because we showed last night that, to paraphrase your title, the old Arsenal is still there – it just needs to appear consistently.

    Like you, I don’t want to big Jack up too much, but he is potentially Gasgoine without the personality disorder. The other great thing about him is that we know he loves us and for the time being at least we won’t be worried about the money bullies taking him from us.

  7. Manthan says:

    Folks what was the formation yesterday please post…….

  8. Rasp says:

    I’m looking forward to Spectrum coming on today to share the joy of last night’s performance with us – after all, we shared his disillusionment 🙄

  9. mohamed ali says:

    you are not hyping ,m up mate hes just world class in the making,i like jack very much i told may mates hes the one with balls the leader arsenal need give,m just 2 more years, wenger needs striker that can kill the ganme and for me i always liked abuu diaby but we cant count on hem coz of the injurys so we need some one diaby quality or even beter then we are good till the summer wenger spend some f…money plz coz we have allready qualtiy team but the bench is empty…

  10. arthur mullard's left gonad says:

    Excellent report, GoonerB.

    What a hugely enjoyable second half it was.

    On my journey down I was praying the 5 hour round trip wasn’t going to be ruined within ten minutes by a twat like Mike Dean, as Sunday was. The M1 was shut between junctions 6 and 8, not good news. Diverting to the A1, adding 42 miles to the journey was not a good portent.

    How wrong I was, my brother Ernest Mullard, suggested it would be fitting for little Jack to get the winner when there was still 20 minutes to go. What a beauty of a prediction! I love late goals.

  11. we got our arsenal back
    hopefully they will stay.
    great report GB, though i would have given diaby higher, he was disciplined & fitted in well with le coq.
    (im)Pressing Arsenal, that is what we want to see everytime we play, i don’t get what made this different. was it purley down to LJW in the Santi role, and le Coq/Diaby being disciplined? ermmmm i dont know.
    Anyway yes we were wasteful but if i remember rightly RVP took 1 goal every 5.5 chances for us, and Pod scores 1 in 3 and doesn’t get to play CF, the mechanics of football are not simple, lets leave it to the men who get paid to work it all out!

  12. arthur mullard's left gonad says:

    Rasp,
    Are you insane, wishing for such a thing?

  13. Gus says:

    Manthan,

    —–Coq–Diaby—–
    ———-Jack———-
    Theo–OG–Cazorla

  14. I disagree with Giroud’s rating. He is fantastic at knocking high balls down. His chest control is fantastic and his lay off for the goal was great. His finishing was no worse than Theo’s. How Theo is going to be our highest paid player is beyond me.

  15. Manthan says:

    Gus Thanks Mate…. 🙂 🙂 🙂

  16. Gus says:

    Everything is better after win

  17. Manthan says:

    Goonermichael OG reminds of heskey… OG is kind of team player he will scores goals and allow others to score by assisting… OG is far better then Theo in the middle.. I agree OG should get more ratingg….

  18. mohamed ali says:

    Sczcesny
    sagna Mertesacker tv Gibbs

    coq diaby

    tw14 wilshere cazorla

    Giroud

  19. arthur mullard's left gonad says:

    Let’s not get carried away…
    Blown out of all proportion….
    Only 1 goal against a poor, half-strength Swansea team…..
    AKBs, blah blah…
    OGL, blah blah…
    Reason not to buy anyone, blah blah….
    Wilshere in the red zone, blah blah….
    Walcott should have had three hat tricks, blah blah….

  20. Rasp says:

    😆 gonad

  21. arthur mullard's left gonad says:

  22. Rasp says:

    gm, chest control oooeeerrrr 😕

    Apparantly we are about to bust the bank and buy Cavani 🙄 . Now I’m not for one minute going to let myself believe there is any truth to this, but he would be a fantastic acquisition and not the sort of player who needs 5 chances to score 1 goal – career average of better than 1 goal every 2 games.

  23. Manthan says:

    I guess AW should follow same formation play santi wide and JW advanced and play OG and Poldi as rotating Strikers.. And for god sake ramsey should be played in the middle he is v good in middle playing him wide is waste… But then wenger knows better then me… 😀 😀

  24. oz gunner says:

    Cheers Gooner B, good summary of the game.

    I agree GM, Giroud is definitely out answer in the middle. With our formation I don’t see why Theo should whinge about playing centrally though. He played on the right last night and had more chances than you can poke a stick at. Only difference is centrally he has less chances, leaves us with no aerial threat, or a player to hold up the ball.

    Great game, very very happy gooner

  25. Manthan says:

    Rasp There are rumours about cavani but i guess there is no truth in that for two reason
    1) Wenger never buys big in Jan..
    2) he will never break bank for any player……..

  26. mohamed ali says:

    coz of diaby,with out hem we dont shine mis that conection ,we need powerfull high tech midfielder,i tell u if we get the afro guy from everton then we are good
    .

  27. oz gunner says:

    @ chas 10.04

    The danish have a lot to answer for! must be why Bendtner is such a willy

  28. arthur mullard's left gonad says:

    If there was any truth in Arsenal chasing Cavani’s signature, then the likelihood of it happening has now been reduced one hundred fold by the whole of the Gooner blogosphere talking about it.

    The sugar daddy clubs would not let it happen.

  29. oz gunner says:

    Perhaps during the fight for Falcao Cavani slipped through the cracks?

  30. arthur mullard's left gonad says:

    Has Falcao been signed?

  31. oz gunner says:

    No but reports are PSG, Chelsea and City are all fighting over his services. Not sure how any of them could even cough up 43 million with FFP coming into play, but didn’t stop them last season i suppose

  32. the rumour is a £30M bid. People are guessing Cavani. Could be Goetze, Higuin or anyone in that sort of bracket. It could also be spin to make us think they tried if you want to be cynical. Maybe there is a change coming. I feel more like we’ll buy someone now though.

  33. Rasp says:

    OK, so it’s my fault we won’t then gonad 🙄

  34. Rasp says:

    I suspect the underground network of players/agents/scouts etc sources its information long before someone tweets it or writes a comment on a blog.

  35. arthur mullard's left gonad says:

    Haha, not at all, Rasput1n.

    It’s just that I was thinking when have we ever signed anyone when the negotiations have been in the public arena? Arshavin, maybe, not many more

  36. Gus says:

    I’m gonna block my ears to the 30 mil talk.

  37. Rasp says:

    Hi gm, if we are looking to spend that kind of money I hope it is targetted at an out and out striker/goalscorer, we do not need any more attacking midfielders

  38. Rasp says:

    I agree chas ….. oops, gonad 😆

    We have flagged up all of our big purchases in recent times, Sol and Reyes were our last two big surprises. I am open to the theory that we may have rethought our transfer policy and if true, maybe a surprise is on the cards….. ya never know

  39. Rasp says:

    I agree our chances of signing Cavani are extremely slim. We would be outbid unless, for some reason, the player would prefer to join Arsenal … a slim hope indeed

  40. Gus says:

    Although I have no idea what is going on in arsenal hq this is my rather arbitrary guess. We have identified several transfer targets but are now ‘in negotiations’ with two. Arsene has said this more or less kind of sort of. He has also said that we need to sort out theo’s contract first which makes me think one of them is zaha and he is waiting for Walcott to be resolved before making a move there either way. In a spat of pure optimism not backed by anything at all I think we are also in for one other striker but I’m not holding my breath.

    Now that is all speculation and most probably completely wrong. But its my guess.
    Key from last night: we were balanced, we had structure! Diaby coquelin and wilshere was a balanced midfield where everyone knew their role. There is a good blend of defensivness, physicality and creativity. Cazorla, Theo is the class direct winger, creative winger combo. Giroud is a propped centre forward, holds up the ball, creates the play.

  41. Rasp says:

    Hi Gus, if we are looking to sign 2 players (I believe AW has said something along those lines) then one of those players could be a potential replacement for Walcott if he doesn’t sign (Zaha?) but that doesn’t mean we can’t be negotiating for the other spot.

    I’m sure this is just smoke and mirrors from the club, we are not going to show our hand until a deal is done.

  42. Rasp says:

    Another even slimmer glimmer of hope re Cavani is that he is apparently a devout christian and so he may value moral standards higher than petro dollars … oops just dropped that straw

  43. Bryan says:

    A great summing up of the game GoonerB

    For me the difference between the first half & second half was the “urgency” we showed in the second half & it has been the urgency & comitment that has been lacking in so many of our games this season.
    It was our best performance for a long time given the fact that it was still 0-0 for so long.
    Obviuosly the 7-3 win v Newcastle was brilliant but things went for us that day, this was a non stop onslaught of Swansea’s goal without the rewards we clearly deserved.
    This was a 1-0 thrashing as on another day we would of won by 4 of 5 the way we hammered their goal.
    Walcott did not have his finishing boots on last night but I think he is normally very good on 1 v 1’s & I am with GoonerB on this one, we should still pursue with him as striker although against certain teams I think he is better off employed on the wings (Man City where he was totally out muscled by their hulking defence)

    Maybe the only thing I don’t agree with was I thought especially in the first half Sagna was poor, made so many silly mistakes, giving the ball away in dangerous places & don’t think he is coming back into form.

    As for Jack, what can you say, what an incredibly outstanding performance, yes we have a real talent in him.

    I was very proud of them last night & hope we can put that effort & endure into the rest of the games this season

  44. vp says:

    Rasp- is he a socialist though?

  45. 26may1989 says:

    Great report, GoonerB, a summary of the game I saw… up to the ratings! I don’t make a habit of quibbling on ratings, and when I write match reports often don’t include them, as it’s such a subjective thing. But while you and I saw the overall cut and thrust in the same way, I did see significant differences on individual performances compared with yours. So my ratings would be:

    Sz: 7 (really just for being able to concentrate when barely involved in the game on a bloody cold night)
    Sagna: 7.5 (first decent performance for ages)
    Mertesacker and Vermaelen: 7 (solid)
    Gibbs: 7.5
    Diaby: 5 (rusty, error prone, poor passing, not match fit – other than that, I thought he was fine!)
    Coq: 8.5 and MOTM (excellent with and without the ball, took the initiative at the right moments, held his position well, some great passes and good attempts on goal, the kid is seriously underrated)
    Wilshere: 8 (excellent performance, showing his potential well. Will be an Arsenal and England great)
    Walcott: 6.5 (was unlucky to a degree but lacked a bit of zip to make things happen. Did get behind his defenders intelligently on a couple of occasions)
    Giroud: 7.5 (this guy is the best team player around, an Alan Smith with strength, love him)

    Without getting carried away (it was a below strength Swansea after all, and we only just avoided extra time), it was heartening to see some of the good stuff. It was noticeable how annoyed Wenger was with the players in the first half, when they weren’t making the best of their dominance and were too quick to take the ball back to the defensive third. Seems they listen at half time these days. Hopefully, we can carry some of this to the Bridge on Sunday.

  46. Rasp says:

    😆 vp

  47. slime says:

    I think Cazorla has to be considered for the LW role now that we have Diaby back in. A midfield 3 of Cazorla, Arteta and Wilshire just hasn’t worked, probably due to it not being able to get around the pitch aswell as a midfield that has Diaby and Le Coq in it. Also, I think Cazorla has been too inconsistent to play in such a key role as AM. That’s not a slate on him, as he’s only been in the country 6 months and it can be hit and miss in the first season (Silva, Mata, Hazard etc).

    BTW, good to see a bit of normality back on the worlds greatest blogging site. Hopefully results will mean it continues for a long time!

  48. VeraCruz says:

    I never trust transfer rumours too much, arsene has a way to always do something else entirely, he enjoys playing with my blood pressure and always keeps me guessing. If we do buy someone I would like it to be someone like diaby ( fellaini is my present choice) strong and dynamic. If we do get an attacker as extra I won’t complain but I am certain it won’t be for 30 million.
    Really enjoyed the game last night, makes me feel more confident about facing chelsea, the only thing I didn’t like was the commentary yesterday and headlines today.
    Great post, exactly how I felt about the game

  49. oz gunner says:

    cheeky 25 million on Bastian Schweinsteiger or lewandowski will do me nicely.

  50. 26may1989 says:

    Cazorla, forgot to give him a mark: 7 (not his sparkling best but some good stuff in there)

    I agree with slim(e), there is a strong case for Cazorla on the flank (either one). He can certainly play in the centre of the three, but whatever the reason, the Arteta-Jack-Santi combo hasn’t gelled as we’d have hoped. Bit of variation has to be the right way. And 442 on occasion? Please?

  51. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Nice stuff GB. My only quible is that Jack should get 10. Without doubt He will go on to be the best player since Pele.

    Every thing is as it should be. The Club is run on a self sustaining model, is it not? We have just secured deals which will increase turnover by 20%, a hugh increase.

    The debate over FFP is hotting up. The established elite are ganing up on the suger daddys both in our league and in Europe. Make no mistake about this, the political power rests with the establishment.

    We will rise to the top very soon.

    The political power rests with the establishment

  52. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Why did the political power rests with the establishment come out twice? hahahaha

    Makes me seem strange, oh waht the hell. “The political power rests with the establishment” hahahaha

  53. oz gunner says:

    great sum up 26, can’t disagree with that

  54. vp says:

    If the Cavanani rumour is true the that would be the biggest lift that this club’s had in a long time. For me its quite simple, if we want to start competing with the best then we have to start bringing in players of this caliber. I’d rather we buy one amazing player for £30mill who can play a specialized role, rather then 3 decent players who can play six positions between them.

    Are we finally beginning to filter players on quality and not price? I really hope so as its about time we started doing so.

  55. VCC says:

    chas 10:04

    If you have been put off by burgers at Tesco, try their meat balls, they’re the dogs bollocks.

  56. Red Arse says:

    That was a worryingly down beat comment, Terry!!

    First, I am pleased the Mrs has let you out of the cellar, again, but it seems to have affected you adversely!!

    There was a serious lack of your infamous sign off;

    “the thirsty goats are stirring in your pants”

    Disgracefully doomy!! 😀

  57. VCC says:

    Terry …seem strange? ………..You ARE strange 😉

  58. Red Arse says:

    Chas’s Gonad,

    It took me 5 minutes to stop laughing and grimacing at your ‘sausage ‘, @ 10:04, which probably says more about our shared humour than I would prefer to admit publicly. 😀

  59. Red Arse says:

    In all the euphoria and lavish player ratings, Diaby’s performance has not been treated quite so generously, so I would like to speak up for him.

    We all know about his continuous problems with recurring injuries, and he fades during the 2nd half because of that, and match fitness is not something that comes instantly, but Jack shows what can happen when it does.

    Diaby oozes class. He has a great, long-legged physique, and is technically amongst the top two or three most gifted players in our squad.

    I am offering up juicy satsumas, and navel oranges to the god of all footballers, nicely masticated by me, of course, in the fervent hope that he retains his health and fitness, and helps to bring a storming finish to the season for Arsenal, and therefore to all of us!

    [It is purely coincidental that I like sweet, juicy satsumas and navel oranges ……………………. but I am sure you all know that!] 😛

  60. Gooner In Exile says:

    GoonerB, well done for stepping into the MatchReport breach dear friend. And equally well done for not over hyping Jack, if I had written that report it would have been a 10000 word eulogising the talent of our young midfielder.

    I’m going to say something now that many will scoff at.

    For me he is second only to Messi in carrying and moving the ball.

    He consistently gains 3-4yards without touching the ball. I think as Rasp said he is the best English talent since Gascoigne, but I also think he could come to be seen as the most talented English player of all time, I smile watching him play football, and there are not many players I can say that about.

  61. Manthan says:

    Yesterday match daiby interception and then trou ball to Theo reminds me of our old daiby hope he can resist injury and play for whole season we need him badly at this moment…..

  62. Gooner In Exile says:

    So have we agreed on formation last night?

    For me it was 4-1-2-1-2 as we didnt really have any natural left sided width. So was more the diamond.

    Could have equally been seen as 4-1-4-1 with a very manoeuvrable 4 of Jack, Santi, Diaby and Theo

  63. Red Arse says:

    Hear, hear GIE.

    His dribbling, creativity and strength for a 21 year old is phenomenal, and he is back to playing the way I saw him as a 14 year old kid.

  64. Gooner In Exile says:

  65. Red Arse says:

    GIE,

    As Gibbs had a brilliant game and played more like a left winger, perhaps it was 3 : 5 : 2

  66. ArsenalForever says:

    Nice Post GoonerB, I agree with your ratings although I would probably exchange the scores you gave for LeCoq (7) and Cazorla (8).

    Some observations I made:

    1. The title of yesterday’s blog was “Can AW teach tactics?”. I think this proves he can. I thought our tactics were spot on. That is probably the most balanced I have seen us all season. Formations aren’t everything, but I would like to see us play a similar formation in the Champs Lge against Bayern.

    2. Yesterday, I think it was LB who put forward the case for JW to play further forward in an Attacking midfield role more regularly. I have to agree. For me, I thought having two DM’s behind him freed him up to express himself a lot more and we benefited from his creativity and movement.

    3. OG provides a better focal point for the attack that TW14. But I do like seeing the two of them playing together, and like someone said earlier, it would be nice to see us play 442 against certain opposition.

    4. Ramsey needs to play in the middle, and we should stop putting himon the wing – Cazorla is a far better outlet on the wing

    5. I agree with earlier comments about JW / SC / MA midfield trio not working. I think having 2 specialist DM’s provides more protection for the defence, and provides a solid platform for out attackers.

    6. Yes it was a mixed Swansea line-up, but then so was the first tie. This game showed that when we play with urgency then we are hard to live with and most teams wouldn’t be able to cope – this goes back to Rasp’s point about us being less than the sum of our parts, and implies that we have been underperforming this season.

    7. If we could get a top class finisher, and add that to what we already have then it would improve the options we would have on the bench as well as adding some variety up front.

  67. Red Arse says:

    How can one resist saying “aaahh”? 😛

    GIE he is so handsome he must clearly take after his famously beautiful mom! :P.

  68. Gooner In Exile says:

    😀 RA as one of my friends text me recently “my other half says he is cute…I am obviously far too manly to say anything like that”.

    But he does indeed take after his mum.

    As for 3-5-2 maybe you are right.

  69. arthur mullard's left gonad says:

    Did anyone see who the Arse player was that Jack hugged first in his celebration? I thought it was a ballboy at first.

    Arsenal players celebrate Jack Wilshere's goal

    Jack Wilshere celebrates his goal v Swansea

  70. Rasp says:

    Great points ArsenalForever,

    I agree, the single most influential factor was that the team was balanced and the players were played in their favoured positions.

    Santi out wide gives Jack the space to conduct things in the middle, having Coquelin behind him allows Jack to play further forward

  71. arthur mullard's left gonad says:

    Lickle George. Ahhhhhhhhhh!

    I might have to get some red and white jim jams.

  72. Rasp says:

    gonad, it looks like Gibbs underneath, but who is it to the side in the tracksuit?

  73. Red Arse says:

    In an interview earlier today, AW made some noises you will be interested in!

    “Cavani is a player that I like, but what is certain is that he costs a lot of money.”
    Cavani has scored 16 goals in Serie A this season and also is a key interest of City.

    He also said;

    “We are looking at Zaha but there is no bid on the table.”

    “Whenever you call about any player, Man United or Milan are also interested. The truth is it is difficult to sign any player.”

    Something and nothing?

  74. Red Arse says:

    Chas,

    Apart from Bartley another ex-Arsenal player was Britton, maybe it was him? Or the tea lady?

  75. Merseforever says:

    Put my hands up. I said I wanted Jack rested, but it was a special performance by a special player. I think the no10 just behind the strikers is the perfect position for him. While I’m sure he could do a job further back I think he can really run the game from that position and won’t have to expand too much energy defending.

    Hopefully he produces another virtuoso performance vs Chelscum and then gets a well deserved rest for a match!

  76. Rasp says:

    If city are looking at Cavani as a replacement for Balotelli, we stand zero chance, they’ll be offering him over £200k a week … enough to purchase his morals as well as his football skills.

  77. Gooner In Exile says:

    Hang on a cotton picking second are people advocating Arsene plays Santi out of position? 😉

  78. Rasp says:

    Refreshingly Guardiola’s rebuttle of the chavs shows that once a principled individual has made enough money, he can, on occasion, choose class over an extra few million 🙄

  79. Red Arse says:

    Maybe Rasp? Arsene does not seem to rate his chances with either Cavani or Zaha when you read that, and almost seems to be saying ‘after Manure etc, we are second dibbs’. Hope not!

    Jack played last night in the way he did as a kid in the juniors.

    Creative, energetic, skilful and always pulling the strings just behind the attack. What a goal!! No surprise!

  80. ArsenalForever says:

    @Rasp, yeah the balance was definitely the most influential factor. Will be interesting to see what he decides to do on Sunday.

    My only concern is that we played 80 mins with 10 men last Sunday, and then put in such a huge performance last night. We might run out of steam against Chelsea in the second half, so in the first half we may need to keep up the same urgency we displayed last night. Our first halves in the league haven’t been great though… Will need another tactical masterclass from AW to beat Chelsea, methinks 🙂

  81. Rasp says:

    Hi GiE, is left midfield considered out of position for Santi? Maybe the quest for pure wide players has been a tactical red herring. Did yesterday’s formation/performance show the way to get the best out of all the players?

  82. I think we’ll sign someone decent

  83. Rasp says:

    Redders, I don’t mean this disrespectfully, but I no longer take a blind bit of notice of anything Arsene says regarding transfers unless it starts with “I can confirm we have just signed…..”

  84. ArsenalForever says:

    @GIE 😀

    I’m not advocating AW play Cazorla on the wing… I just think he is a better outlet there than Ramsey. He at least has the trickery to beat a full back.

    My personal preference would be for us to buy a proven specialist for that position, but if that is not an option then we can only work with what we have.

  85. Gooner In Exile says:

    I think it did Rasp I was just thinking back to Arshavin….and the criticism Arsene has received for playing him out of position.

    I have personally been asking for us to move to a more freeform advanced midfield three for a while, it does leave question marks when defending though.

    As for the picture quiz, my guess is Jenkinson or Ox. Arshavin and Santos are standing, Mannone was on the bench but can’t imagine him warming up at that stage. I think Ox though.

  86. Rasp says:

    I’m in total agreement on all those points GiE. I think Coquelin showed that he can be alternated with Arteta to keep both players fresh and the same could be said for Jack/Ramsey/Cazorla. Ramsey is beginning to look like the player we’d hoped he could be … as long as he is played in the middle – at the moment he is a good sub to bring on after 67 minutes 😆

  87. GoonerB says:

    Just got a break to look through the comments, and many thanks for the positive vibes from you all. I watched it in the pub with friends so it was difficult to concentrate on every aspect and every player. When I got home to pen the report with a couple of light ales inside me I actually found it quite difficult to compile the ratings on some of the players and was aware that a couple of them could be a bit suspect. As such I am happy to agree with everyone that has given slightly different ratings to certain players. I was also so highly mesmerised by Jacks performance that I didn’t concentrate as much on the other players as I should have.

    I am also in full agreement with those of you that have commented that the balance in midfield was a lot better and a significant reason as to why we performed well. I also agree with those that have stated the second half urgency to our game was important. Bloody hell I am agreeing with everyone today, it is rather disconcerting….. Never mind I will see the wife later, so disagreements are on the horizon.

    Two other observations I made. One has no bearing on anything but I noted that Giroud runs like Michael Johnson, but obviously much slower. If he just had that bit more pace he would be a monster of a player but I still really like him regardless.

    The other point regards the oft mentioned lack of leaders in the squad. I don’t know if all our AA friends around the globe got the same T.V footage but at one point on ESPN they showed a replay panning in on Jack where he was pointing to his head and shouting (in a positive way) to concentrate. I am not sure who it was aimed at, but it struck me as a significant positive for the future of this team that one so young was prepared to take the verbal initiative in keeping his team-mates focussed and on their toes. A future captain without a doubt.

  88. arthur mullard's left gonad says:

    GIE,
    I think your Ox is a good shout.
    The legend under this version of the photo suggests your Arshavin is Podolski.
    Arsenal players celebrate Jack Wilshere's goal
    Besides who ever heard of the little Russian joining in a goal celebration!

  89. GoonerB says:

    GIE, that tactical formation you have wanted did seem to work (at least last night). I also would give some credit to a blogger that I haven’t seen post for a bit. I think he goes under the title JM if I remember. He always comes on with a huge amount of information on tactics and formations (like a hyped up version of me….). Anyway I am sure if my memory serves me, that he was championing a 2 man pivotal DM with 3 attacking players behind a striker, and he wanted to play Cazorla as one of the 3 in the wider position. Last nights team must have almost identically resembled what he was looking for. Would be interesting to hear from him if he is out there reading the blog today.

  90. Gooner In Exile says:

    Ahhh could be right on Pod, but it looked like Arshavins nose, maybe he is too tall though.

  91. Gooner In Exile says:

    GooberB that is a good point, maybe JM now has a job in the coaching staff and has been silenced on the blogs 😀

  92. GoonerB says:

    By the way has anyone asked Raddy if he knows anything about that suspicious looking Danish sausage?

  93. Red Arse says:

    Rasper, @12:20,

    That is totally disrespectful ………………………. and I totally agree with you!! 😀

    I suppose that is why neither of us gets too worked up about all the mumbo jumbo of the T/W, altho I do get a bit tetchy sometimes, because I am sure I have spotted a good buy (no pun intended 🙂 ) and Arsene ignores me!!
    How very dare he – as GM/Chas might say! 😀

  94. Wonderman says:

    Afternoon all, great match report Gooner B. I was at the game last night and make no mistake Swansea put up a fight. In the first half they seemed to be better in possession than we were without too much penetration. I was getting frustrated with our lack of tempo which seemed to assist them and it looked like Gibbs had been told not to raid forward . Second half, different story we pressed aggressively , the full backs overlapped and really should have scored more. For those who claim Wenger is “tactically inept”…. We were spared the usual 70 minute substitution and in fact only one sub was used Ramsey for the tiring Diaby much later on..presumably because that was the tactically correct decision and so it proved. For me the key is simple, play at a high, aggresive pace from the start of games and we will blow teams away, leave the slow build up approach for the Champs league

  95. Red Arse says:

    Agree, Wonderman – spot on! 😀

  96. goonerjake says:

    Wonderman – my views exactly, well done sir.

  97. oz gunner says:

    If JM doesn’t have a job in tactics he should have, the man has talent.

    @ GoonerB

    I also noticed the Jack ‘think’ gesture. The man oozes maturity! Whoever sorted out his contract should be fired, it’s simply not long enough. I want to see him play for Arsenal until he retires.

  98. Gooner In Exile says:

    Hmmm what was NikB fined for those pants? And now UEFA decide to fine Ajax for this

    While unadulterated racism still gets punished by similar or lesser amounts!

  99. LB says:

    Have to slightly disagee with you Wonderman: for me the Swansea performance was way below the level of drive and determination they showed in the previous two games; that’s to say, the first leg in Swansea and the game at the Emirates when they stuffed us.
    I got the impression that felt they thought they had more important fish to fry, backed up by the fact that they fielded a weakend team.

    Let’s be honest, we should have thrashed them, we had four good chances in the first 15 minutes that both Walcott and Giroud’s lack of close control caused to be wasted.

    I am pleased with the win but wow do we still have some way to go.

  100. LB says:

    I was amazed that Wenger played Wilshere in the old Cesc position.
    You can argue until you are all red in the face that that is his position for the future but I am still not convinvced and 5 goals in 80 games backs up what I am saying.

    So why did Wenger do it? The only guess I can come up with is that it was a trial run ahead of the game against the chavs on the weekend.

    Yes, this makes sense, Wilshere has excellent defensive qualities, as does Coquelin and Diaby adds the height, yep that’s it same team for the weekend.

  101. Gooner In Exile says:

    But that’s 4 goals in 79 games as a defensive midfielder, and 1 in 1 as an attacking midfielder 😉

  102. Wonderman says:

    Hi LB, in my opinion the league game at the Ems saw them do their usual and we did not show up. The first leg at their ground saw us dominate the second half only to allow them back in. Last night they had a lot of possession moving the ball well, and were dangerous throughout…the difference? Our defensive fortitude, but also remember they made 5 changes

  103. LB says:

    Wonderman

    Apart from the Bartley header I cannot recall another time when they threatened.

    We were totally dominant, I don’t know the possession stat but I feel certain that it would back this up.

    As I watched the game a reoccurring thought kept running through my mind: this team left their enthusiasm on the bridge from Wales to England.

    We should have won 3-0 at least.

    Oops, I have just remembered the Vermaelen sliding tackle, so that makes two threats.

  104. Gooner In Exile says:

    Interestingly Sky says Swansea won possession stats by 51% to 49%, I think ESPN had Swansea winning at halftime by 55%-45% but by full time had us at 55% which suggests we totally dominated second half possession. But as you say LB they rarely created good opportunities close to our goal.

  105. LB says:

    Hahahahah

    GIE 3.14

  106. vp says:

    Glad we won but I agree with LB in that we should be more grounded with our post match analysis. If Wilshere had not scored that goal,we’d all probably be talking about the poor performances from our strikers in front of goal. I am reluctant to criticize OG as he is still new to the team, but a frank assessment at this moment in time would suggest that he would not get into the starting lineup of any of the top four Prem teams (could arguably put Spurs and Liverpool in that too). He may improve, but for now he should be learning from the bench.

    Theo is just too weak. Not a problem if you have a sublime first touch -which, unfortunately he does not. Also, he’s 23 now and i don’t think he’ll ever learn to play with his head up. Without contradicting myself, I’d like him to stay as he does offer something which we don’t have (pace), but not if it leads to subsequent increases in wage demands from other players, which it invariably will. Reports out today are suggesting that he’s going to become our highest earner. We’ve let better players leave in the past due to wage requests, and although we need to make a stand, I don’t think theo is the right player to do it with, I really don’t. In my opinion, this says more about the demise of the club then the quality of the player if you ask me.

    One things for sure, we cannot afford both of these players to have a bad day at the office if they find themselves playing together again. Particularly with Chelsea and Bayern coming up. Its just a shame that the best finisher at the club is being deployed on the left wing.

  107. LB says:

    Surely all those rumous up there about Arsenal being on the brink on signing 30mil player are in reference to Walcott, after all

    It will be like signing a new player.

  108. LB says:

    vp

    I read a critical comment about Giroud recently and then at the end by contrast and quite jarringly the author posed the question: can you name a better centre forward signed by Wenger? It stopped me in my tracks.

  109. vp says:

    LB

    Lol. Can see why your bamboozled on that one as Thiery Henry was a winger at the time of purchase. They’ve gone from bad to worse since he left

    Adebeyiur
    Bendtner
    chamack
    Girroud????

    Lets just hope he’s at least good enough to buck this weak trend.

  110. RockyLives says:

    Great write-up and ratings GoonerB.

    Very enjoyable game, particularly second half.

    I thought the crowd was excellent last night. There were groans here and there at missed chances and misplaced passes, but even with the clock running down the “Red Army” chanting stayed really strong.

    Don’t know whether it came across on the telly…

  111. RockyLives says:

    26
    Just saw your comment from last night.
    Do let me know if you are planning to head Toronto-wards. It would be lovely to meet up.

  112. RockyLives says:

    LB
    We did completely dominate, but in addition to the Bartley header and the Verm slider, there was also Michu’s late shot (well saved low to his left by Szcz) and I recall Tommy making a second great block inside the box.

    In fact, Tommy V’s return to some reasonable form is a bit of a relief!

  113. slime says:

    RL,

    All that came across on ESPN was the cameras filming empty seats, commentators moaning about ticket prices, Arsenal players and anything else to do with the club, and also the lack of atmosphere which I can only put down to where ESPN put their microphones.

    Every single time we appear on that channel the Emirates sounds like a library. Jokers!

  114. LB says:

    vp

    I wasn’t so much that I couldn’t remember the order; it was the shock of realising that Giroud might arguably be the best to date.

    I like his work rate but am far from being convinced.

    Hi Rocky

    It’s minus 2 here and the place is deserted, far too cold to go out.

    What’s the temperature there?

  115. Wonderman says:

    Hi LB, I haven’t looked but it wouldn’t surprise me if Swansea had more possession in the first half particularly. They were winning the 1v1 battles and continuously switching play , all I’m saying is they didn’t lay down imo

  116. Wonderman says:

    Where is our mate Spectrum today ?

  117. RockyLives says:

    LB
    I’m at Kings Cross so it’s about -2 here too 🙂

    I was at the match last night.

  118. RockyLives says:

    Wonderman
    There are certain bloggers who never appear after a win. Which kind of tells you all you need to know.

  119. Red Arse says:

    You talking about me Rocker? 🙂

  120. RockyLives says:

    Redders,
    Come rain or shine you’re always here (thank heavens).

  121. Red Arse says:

    Anyway, Rocky, I hope you are in Kings Cross for purely pure reasons, as it is nowhere near the airport!!

    I received an email this afternoon, from Gatwick Airport, warning me about the snow predictions for tomorrow — I made that flight arrangement three months ago, and had to cancel, how did they know I was scheduled to go — how did they not know I had cancelled my flight?

    How exciting is that? A mystery! 😀

  122. Big Raddy says:

    GoonerB. Really enjoyed the post. Thank you. If I watch in the pub my post-match would be fine up to about the 70th minute when it would become meaningless drivel!

    As to the sausage. It is a kylling sausage which means chicken, so it is probably a cock 🙂

  123. Red Arse says:

    Rocker,

    You haven’t been around much lately — been busy I am guessing — while I have been stuck doing bugger all, which is not as nice as might be thought!

    I have missed you!! 😛

  124. Red Arse says:

    No probably about it Raddy – a chicken it is not! 😀

  125. Sheep Hagger ™ says:

    Hi
    At last we got the win last night,the locals are a little cheesed off .
    I went into work this morning with an Arsenal scarf on .
    It wound a few up but I laffed it off,any way no snow yet buts its COLD.

    Much love
    Sheep Hagger™

  126. RockyLives says:

    Hmmm – I’m flying out from Heathrow tomorrow lunchtime. Haven’t heard about no snow though.

  127. RockyLives says:

    Sheep
    I met a few Swansea supporters in an Indian restaurant last night. Nice fellers.

    I told them I liked their team, but we might have to nick their manager in a year or two.

    I think they were having mutton curry, so I thought of you 🙂

  128. Red Arse says:

    You might not be going Rocky, check first thing in the morning.

    Heavy snow expected in London, spreading from the West, and should arrive by 9 a.m. – that means Heathrow too, I guess.

    Forecasts are often wrong, and the airports are pretty good at keeping things moving(ish).

    It is the first time the airport (Gatwick) has ever contacted me directly – so they must be worried.

  129. GoonerB says:

    I thought you would shed some light on the Dansk sausage Raddy.

    Rocky I think mutton curry to a Weshman is tantamount to canabilism, but we will have to defer to sheep on that one. Have a safe trip back tomorrow Rocky.

  130. Big Raddy says:

    I got snowbound in London a couple of years ago after going to a game with Peaches. Had to wait 48hrs before there was a plane thanks to the backup of passengers.

    But I am sure it will be fine tomorrow.

  131. RockyLives says:

    Thanks GoonerB 🙂

  132. Gooner In Exile says:

    We’ve had a good 6 inches of snow in Norwich this week including an hour blizzard on Tuesday that brought the city to a standstill. temperature hasnt been above 0c all day and they are predicting anything between 1-5 more inches overnight. Not going anywhere tomorrow

  133. Big Raddy says:

    Minus 10 here and falling. Nice.

  134. Sheep Hagger ™ says:

    I hate the snow because when it snows I can’t find my SHEEP.

  135. GunnerN5 says:

    I bet that makes your sheep happy – they get a night off.

  136. Sheep Hagger ™ says:

    No I keep two sheep in the kitchen,so I always have two spare.
    Nudge nudge wink wink.
    Much love
    Sheep Hagger™

  137. jnyc says:

    Great discussion! I see we are back to super intelligent blogging here today. We are ahowing our class as well 😉 —-
    but not because we won a match – i think its because Arsene finally changed things up a bit.—–
    Rasp. i like ur view on how we should alternate for rest, it would also help Podolski i think.

  138. jnyc says:

    Great discussion! I see we are back to super intelligent blogging here today. We are ahowing our class as well 😉 —- .
    but not because we won a match – i think its because Arsene finally changed things up a bit.—–
    Rasp. i like ur view on how we should alternate for rest, it would also help Podolski i think.

  139. I just watched the second half again. Giroud was fantastic and we absolutely battered them. Most one sided one nil I’ve seen for a while

  140. Wonderman says:

    I hear ya Rocky

  141. Sheep Hagger ™ says:

    Do u know what Welsh people call an I Pad . ?

  142. Gooner In Exile says:

    Jnyc we wouldn’t be football fans if we couldn’t celebrate wins, even if we know a defeat might be just round the corner.

    Thankfully the atmosphere at the Bridge is more toxic than the Emirates at the moment so an early press and goal should see the crowd turn on the manager, which even though their players will know is not for them doesn’t necessarily mean they will continue to play for him either, they want to play in an enjoyable atmosphere and if that means waving bye bye to Rafa as they have helped get rid of other managers in the past they will do it.

    On a side note pleased that Rockster thought the atmosphere was ok in stadium last night. … could those that normally sit in the empty seats actually be the problem.

    And finally I was pleased to hear the crowd sing Walking in a Wilshere Wonderland,

  143. RockyLives says:

    Sheep
    I wanna know!

  144. 1-0 to the Arsenal. the old chestnut makes a welcome return! We must be overjoyed at the win, especially as it was against Swansea who have lately seemed to be out Arsenaling us. Even through hitting us on the break.
    I have no doubt that before Jack’s goal they could have done us again, therefore the timing of the strike was very important. There was little time left for them to recover from it.
    I wonder though :- with Wilshere being our obvious budding star, will we try to build a team around him or will he be the next cash cow to be milked. I am afraid, very afraid, due to the silence of the owner and lack of ambition portrayed at Arsenal. I am not a regular poster, I don’t think I need to be. I also see that some comments and asides are often left ignored. I get your blog everyday via email. I like the read but i do not like thinking Hooray Henry pass the Pimms as I sometimes do.

  145. There are some sensible bods on this site. There is also a stubborn element who prefer not to hear what they don’t want to hear. Do they want to be fooled? I think not. However, it may be best to open up to all eventualities. If things are not going well in your affairs, you should think of the worst but hope for the best.

  146. ces1ne says:

    Solid win yesterday, Jack went on about 3-4 of those runs in the box before he scored & I had a feeling he was going to put 1 away before the end. You could see how much it meant to him after the (sort of) rough last few weeks we had.
    –I took a little break from AA bc of the high-tension in the comments the last few days, but it seems as though “normal” service has been resumed (as “normal” as you AA regulars can be 🙂 )
    —Just caught up on the posts I missed & one comment that stood out for me was from Evonne a day or 2 ago.
    “You cannot possibly appreciate what we have until you go to the games. When you walk shoulder to shoulder with 60 thousands other Gunners into our beautiful stadium, you feel the buzz, the anticipation, the pain or joy, sing your heart out, freeze your toes and then walk home taking that feeling that’s so special and so yours, that you will never tire of it, you take it to the grave with you and at the pearly gates you say ‘Thank you Dennis for letting me be the part of it’.”
    –I have only been to 12 matches (mostly when I was younger, 29yo now….8 at Highbury & 4 at the Emirates) bc of that whole living in NYC thing….but once I read that comment, that oh so beautiful & passionate comment, I remembered that wonderful feeling I had when I was there.
    —I don’t want to get into the context of the comment, or who/what it was directed to…..I just want to tip my hat to Evonne for such a wonderful quote & a thank you for stirring up memories from some of the best days of my life. Someone please buy that girl a drink for me at the next meetup, she deserves it.

  147. Evening all, bit late getting on today due to being holed up in a hotel in Berkshire on a conference and probably being snowed in tomorrow. Great to get another AA author onto match report duties and a top hole show GoonerB. For me this match, especially the result, will have restored some confidence for our trip to the (Toxic) bus stop in Fulham. A win there will set us up nicely. Let it be so ! UTA!

  148. oz gunner says:

    @ Ces1ne

    are you married? Just asking so Evonne doesn’t need to later! 🙂

    @ TC

    You’d be hard pressed to find a more welcoming site. Trust me if doesn’t matter what you say as long as it’s argued well and doesn’t end in a repetitive tagline. Every one on here is balanced (except Terry 🙂 ) and very welcoming. Voice whatever you want, varied discussions are welcomed, after all that’s what keeps it interesting!

    As for Jack, that is a valid concern. I just think he has come around at the right time. The purse strings will loosen now because of incoming sponsorship deals and the easing of loan repayments. If he was around during the cesc era I’d be worried but I think the milking days are a thing of the past. I’d like to say he will be future captain so of course he’ll stick around for a while, but we know how that’s worked out in the past.

    Let’s just hope he sticks just like Gerrard has done for pool.
    For now I’m just going to sit back and enjoy the lad develop in to one of the best players in the world.

  149. GoonerB says:

    Off to the land of Zzzz’s now but thanks to all the later posters.

    Chary, I like the Toxic bus stop bit.

    Ces1ne, I have not yet had the pleasure of meeting the great Evonne myself, but I am sure I will be afforded that opportunity at some point. I will of course, at this time, comply with your wishes and purchase the lady a drink, but I am led to understand from some that know her better, (Chas, Rasp e.t.c…), that going down this pathway can lead to said male ending up in a certain element of physical danger (big smiley).

    Night all, and see you tomorrow, from the imbecile who still cannot do proper smileys despite Red Arse’s kind lesson yesterday.

  150. goonerB : ) without the space is 🙂

  151. Rob Lucci says:

    now I know his name..

  152. kelsey says:

    Morning.

    Reading Tony Cummings]s post about Jack got me thinking on the same lines.
    During his 17 months absence I was always concerned if he would make afull recovery .Well that has been answered in no uncertain terms but Wenger will be cautious not to verplay him or hit “the red light zone”
    IMO he is the leader and captain of the future for Arsenal and most probably England.
    He will develop into one of the hottest properties in football and regardless of length of contract and his obvious love for the club there will come a time in the next two years when the carrot will be dangled by many clubs.
    Money and the making of it seems to be Kroenke’s main ambition but there is a real danger that we may lose out on CL this year and without real quality being brought into the club in the Summer regardless of CL qualification I would be much more concerned to tie jack down now than this never ending saga with Theo who IMO is still a raw talent and whose loss wouldn’t be so devasting as with RVP and Fabregas.
    Wenger has again let these contract negotiations go on to long and one gets the impression that no business will be done during the remaider of this window until Theo’s situation is resolved.
    Again I feel that is a weakness in priorities by whoever is actually accountable for this strategy.

  153. Big Raddy says:

    kelsey Re: Theo’s contract. How can AFC respond to his agents blackmail?

    All they can do is threaten to walk away from the negotiations which is counter-productive as they want TW to stay.

    The cards are all in the agents hands, and the longer they delay the more AFC will be forced to concede because they risk not having time to sign a replacement should Theo decide to leave.

    It is a crappy situation for AFC but Theo’s agents must be congratulated for doing a brilliant job for their client. They must have thought about this at least 2 seasons ago when they refused to sign a contract extension.

    Oh and Jack signed a contract extension a couple of weeks, didn’t he?

  154. Big Raddy says:

    Tony Cummings. “If things are not going well in your affairs, you should think of the worst but hope for the best.”

    What a pragmatic way of thinking!

    When life looks bleak I go shopping 😀

    Why isn’t every comment responded to? Well, I guess either they don’t touch a nerve or there is no time.

    As to being fooled. How are we fooled? The club is doing all they can to compete on an uneven playing field. They sign what they believe are the best players available within their budget. They work extremely hard every day to compete both on and off the pitch – that they do not always succeed is inevitable.

    If the club does not achieve some fans unrealistic expectations does it mean they are fooling them?

    I respond this way because in my opinion Arsenal are the most principled club in the PL and always have been.

    best

    A happy Pimms Drinker 🙂

  155. arthur mullard's left gonad says:

    Hooray Henry pass the Pimms. Hahahaaha.

    Evonne and ces1ne……

  156. oz gunner says:

    @ Gonad

    Evonne has already written a song about her love for ces1ne, it was originally penned for you but she changed her mind!

  157. arthur mullard's left gonad says:

    This is more Evonne’s style, oz.

  158. Big Raddy says:

    Arthur. That really made my morning. More tomorrow?

  159. Big Raddy says:

    Disagree. I think evonne is more BG than Lou Reed. But who knows – she could be a Sabbath-ite or a Bieber-bot

  160. Red Arse says:

    Good Morning, people! 🙂

    No snow in Hertfordshire land yet — not my bit anyway.

    Just been out feeding the birds ahead of the white stuff — they seem really skittish, probably hard for them to get a drink of water too!

  161. Red Arse says:

    Evonne has her new dog – don’t need no man – except Chas the monster! 🙂

    Good response to Tony’s comment, Raddy. Not sure what was meant when he said he did not comment much, but he noticed that some bloggers comments or asides were being ignored. [well everyone ignores Kelsey, of course!] 😀

    Get on your computer, Tony, and answer them! 🙂

  162. Red Arse says:

    Morning. Kelsey, 🙂

    Snow in Spain?? 🙂

  163. kelsey says:

    No RA.

    but the rain in Spain stays mainly on the plain 🙂

  164. evonne says:

    Morning all,
    No RA, I don’t need Chas, he dumped me 😦
    TA has a new dog too and he has proven to be a better Gunner than me – my new dog is called Bambi, his is King Henry!!

    I was just looking at the fixtures this weekend. Blimey, what a Sunday ahead of us!! We will be 5th by Monday, no change on the very top.

  165. arthur mullard's left gonad says:

    BR,
    Evonne likes the Bee Gees. Really?

  166. evonne says:

    OMG, I have just read the little discussion about me!!! OMG!! You are terrible!! The lot of you!!

    Ok, I must admit that Arther (who are you) is closer to the truth than Oz; I cannot stand Barbara Straisand, grrrhhh, but the girl from ‘waiting for my man’ looks a lot like the young Evonne.

  167. evonne says:

    Arthur – no she bloody doesn’t!! You are right again, who are you???

  168. Red Arse says:

    Evonne, your heart is telling you who that monster Gonad is!! 😀

  169. Red Arse says:

    The rain may be in Spain, Kelsey, but the snow has arrived in Herts!
    Covering already! 🙂

  170. evonne says:

    is Arthur that cheat monster??!! Nobody knows me better than he does 🙂

  171. GoonerB says:

    Morning all. Sorry I forgot to say happy birthday to Kelsey yesterday. So a belated happy birthday Kelsey.

    Evonne, I must apologise I think I kicked off the thread on you with my last post before retiring to bed. A last rush of blood to the head…

    Redders, I have no snow yet in my bit of Hertfordshie. Which area are you in ? Obviously you don’t need to give the exact location but can I assure you that the rumours of me being partial to a bit of stalking are not entirely true. It was just a horrible mix up, as I explained to the judge.

  172. GoonerB says:

    Redders I had my suspicions on Arthur Gonad. The amount of clips posted lead me to a certain conclusion. I have also had some suspicions about some others and a certain chap who resides in Cornwall.

  173. GoonerB says:

    I lie. Just walked in the house 10 mins ago from the school run but can now see it has since started to lightly snow.

  174. evonne says:

    GoonerB – ha ha ha, I didn’t see your comment until you mentioned it! I am a keyboard hero and a mouse in real life 😦 I don’t drink, or chase men or engage in physical violence. I much prefer slowly inflicted pain, revenge is a dish best served cold. Fear not, looking forward to meeting you one day xx

  175. evonne says:

    Are Chelsea for takings on Sunday? I think so

  176. arthur mullard's left gonad says:

    Be afraid of the biceps.

  177. evonne says:

    Kelsey – Adam Ant is talking about his bipolar on Breakfast bbc

  178. evonne says:

    Monster – you start spilling the beans I will tell them too!!

  179. evonne says:

    What about Chelsea???? Is nobody worried yet??

  180. arthur mullard's left gonad says:

    evonne – don’t worry, be happy.

  181. GoonerB says:

    Evonne, I feel both Chelsea and ourselves have been the 2 most Jekyll and Hyde teams this season, so it will depend on which one turns up for both teams. We can do it but they have some very good players. We will need Wednesday’s second half performance for closer to 90 mins to do it, and also our strikers to have their shooting boots on. The chances missed in the second half would likely be more costly to us in this game.

  182. Morning all

    New Post ………………

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