How many Man City players would get into the Arsenal team? + Match preview.

Should be a superb game this afternoon. The best away side in the PL against the best home team.  If the world was a just and fair place we would leave with the 3 points but sadly, it isn’t.

And why do I say that? Because the recent history of the Northern Oilers has besmirched their past. I guess for their supporters all they care about is that City have been re-born, but to those teams who have chosen to take another route it is galling to say the least. But enough of that, this is the status quo and we must live with it. Actually, No, before leaving this subject I need to say one thing – Arsenal are a team with tradition who have found a way to compete without selling it’s soul. Hurray for us!!

In summer when asked who would win the title this season I replied City. To me they have the best squad, the most complete first team and the greatest resources. They disappointed last season, primarily because of a manger who had little empathy with his players.

Let’s look at their squad. Hart remains a terrific player and without question the best English keeper yet he is on the bench. Is it a similar situation to Szczesny’s benching last season ? Only City fans know whether they have more faith in Big Pants.

Across defence their only “weak” spot seems to be who partners Kompany. Any team which can bench Lescott, Richards, etc etc is strong. Same in midfield …. when one has limitless purchasing power a team can take a punt with big money – Rodwell? Here is a lad who looked as though he would be an England regular by now but instead he hardly gets to ride the pine! We know the other chaps, Yaya, Samir, Fernandinho (over €30m!!), Garcia – all fine players and yet in this area we can match them.

Where we are nowhere near as good is in attack. Aguero is the best forward in the PL. Suarez is good but this fellow is tops. No silly stuff just does his job with startling efficiency. We should have bid €50m (plus one) for him. Then there is Dzeko, a player who would be an automatic starter at THOF and yet struggles to get a start thanks to the fine start from Negredo. Negredo cost €20m (ish), Soldado cost €27m (:-D :-D), both Spanish , one has flourished the other looks like a complete waste of money . Another City signing who impresses is Jesus Nava – a Spanish Theo.

Then there is Jovetic, and here I have to apologise because I have to go back to the subject I said I wouldn’t in the second para ….. money. The media stated categorically that we were trying to sign this lad to play alongside Giroud (who knows if it was true) but City signed him specifically to stop him improving our side – no other reason. (they did the same when they cherry-picked Samir, Ade, Gael and Kolo). How many times has Jovetic played?  Three.  22 million of her majesty’s for what?  Perhaps we can buy him in January at a discount. I know Chelsea did the same with Willian but I do not expect a quality club like Man City to stoop to Chav-dom. Do you?

You may be a little concerned having read the above BUT …. we are TOTL and despite a bit a silliness in Naples are in good form. We drew at the Etihad last season in a dour 0-0, and we have much more attacking threat this time round. We are just the sort of team to trouble City due to the pace and intelligence of our attacking midfield.  Much has been made of the absence of Walcott and we must hope he has been rested to be fully fit this afternoon. There is little doubt MC will have the bulk of possession and a counter-attack seems the most likely weapon.

My Team:

city v arse

I have benched Wilshire but the fact he was rested in Italy points to him starting, perhaps with Flamster being rested. Ozil looks tired but has to play, or does he? Santi is so much better playing in the hole. We are starting to have a seriously strong bench and can actually improve the side with substitutions – it has been some time since we could say that.

Just for fun I thought I would see what a combined MC/AFC team might look like. What do you think?


So…. in my team there are 7 Gooners and just 4 Blues. Surprising but then I might be biased 😀

Is Negredo better than Giroud? I don’t think so and a frontline of OG and Aguero would be very potent. I do not know enough about the City full-backs to make a fair comparison so I went with my heart and a bit of logic – Gibbs is better than Clichy, and Sagna is top quality. The CB pairing would be the best in the PL  and though Koscielny is not far off Kompany, the Belgian is the best CB and Captain in the league. Goalkeeper is also an area of doubt, all three in contention are fine keepers but TPIG takes it thanks to his form this season. Ozil or Silva/Nasri? Come on …..   DM’s – Yaya is a monster and it was a sad day when he decided to sign for MC instead of us, he is almost as good as PV4. Fernandinho has youth, agility and being Brazilian on his side, as much as I admire Arteta and Flamini they are simply not as good. No place in the team for Jack or Santi or Theo but none are automatic first choice for AFC let alone this team.

So, for the first time this season we go into a game as under-dogs. Can we win? Of course we can, we won in Dortmund. The betting is very much in favour of a home win which given MC’s 100% home record is understandable. Pre-game I would be delighted to take a point.


written by Big Raddy


266 Responses to How many Man City players would get into the Arsenal team? + Match preview.

  1. One hell of a team, Raddy. As a City fan, though, i wouldn’t endorse any team that didn’t have Silva in it – for the skill, variety and sheer imagination of his passing and for his phenomenal ability to retain possession. I couldn’t fault Ramsey at the minute so Ozil, wonderful player as he is, would be restricted to a cameo.
    And much as I like Sagna, for me Zabaleta – the player I’d be happy to go to war with – is the best RB in the Prem.
    If Hart had been in the form of last season and the one before GK would be a no-brainer. Alas…
    Bench: Pantilimon, Sagna, Nasri, Koscielny, Ozil, Navas, Negredo.

  2. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Delayed departure so that I could catch The Big Raddy.

    You never disappoint, thank you. Think you’re right about Arsene picking Jack over Theo. It’ll be interesting to see. Like you, I picked City as Champions before the season began, and if I removed my blinkers, I would stand by that now.

    Hopefully, a great game of football awaits, but it’s strange how often two good footballing sides do not provide great games.

    I don’t often doom before a game, but right now I’d take a 4-4 🙂

  3. evonne says:

    GiE – not shock, merely big surprise 🙂 I was nice to blueV as well, called his team City rather than Shitty

    off to read Raddy Special

  4. Peterbkk says:

    You are having a laugh. Girroud instead of Negredo? Ozil instead of Silva. Yaya instead of Wilshire? Yaya is lazy. You will get smashed today. Silva is worth more than your entire midfield 😉

  5. Räsp says:

    Morning everyone, nice to see you back bluevalentine.

    Its going to be a cagey affair today I reckon unless there is an early goal in which case it could end up 3:3

    The bookies have city as favourites to win today and to win the league – I don’t imagine the latter would change even if we do win today.

    I hope Sagna is back, we need his experience for this game. I rate Aguero very highly and Negredo is not too shabby so its a day for defensive solidity and no attempts at playing football by SZ.

    My prediction 1:2 to the boys in red 😛

  6. Räsp says:

    Peterbkk, read some of the comments by bluevalentine and learn how an intelligent and mature supporter behaves on the blog of a rival club.

  7. Big Raddy says:

    BV. Thanks. Much as I admire Silva I stand by my selection. In a battle who would you rather have in the trenches … a German or a Spaniard 😀

    BTW I recall you like an acoustic . I recently bought a used cedar top Takamine – cannot believe the quality and playability and (almost) cheap as chips.

  8. Dan says:

    I’d make 3 changes to your side.

    Zabaleta in, he’s for me been the best RB in the league for over a year now and has the perfect mix of defensive and attacking quality.

    Silva in, back to his best, and at his best he is the best in the PL, he controls just about every game he plays. Ozil is a fine player, and probably has a few more goals in him than Silva, but I want my midfielders to control the ball as well as create, and I think Silva just edges it (I imagine neither set of fans would take a player swap, so we will agree to disagree in advance!)

    Negredo, he has been a sensation in the PL and has hit the ground running, after being sensational in La Liga at Sevilla. Giroud is having a good season, but Negredo is not only a great finisher, but a hell of a player with the ball at his feet, like all Spaniards. (You could also argue the partnership with Aguero is tried and tested).

    Hope it’s a fine game, I am going 3-1 to the Blues. Good Luck in the rest of your season, I actually hope you finish 2nd just behind us!

  9. I should probably add a rider, having re-read your piece.
    RODWELL – all City fans know this lad is a talent. Unfortunately he is very injury prone, apparently it’s something to do with the fact that he’s not fully grown! He keeps coming back and breaking down. Otherwise he would be first choice for the extra midfielder ahead of ‘Jerry’ Garcia (a wonderful marker of space but can’t really tackle).
    JOVETIC – sorry, but this guy was not ‘a vanity purchase’.From an inside source I have it that he was heavily scouted and all were impressed. At the time we bought him Nasri had been very inconsistent – he’s actually a more likeable guy than opposition fans believe but he benefits from a bit of a virtual cuddle, which was not Scarf Ace’s style. Pellers is more subtle and warmer in this aspect. There’s no doubt that Jove would have featured as a withdrawn forward but, again, he’s been injured almost from the tome he arrived. His path may be blocked by Nas, though, as the latter is getting more like the player we thought we’d bought with every game.
    PANTS. Opinion is divided. There’s a big English City fan contingent emotionally biased towards Hart. And he is, at his best, a brilliant shot-stopper. Problems are his occasional daft errors, sometimes dodgy judgment on crosses and poor distribution, particular from hand (he seems to have been coached out of his habit for over-kicking our midfield. Pants is better in this respect, he gets the ball out very quickly to a receiver. He’s good with crosses – at 6’8.5″ he has to be!
    Sorry this is so long but I felt it worth spelling out.

  10. p.s Bought a Cort dreadnaught, solid woods, in a sale. Again dirt cheap, not quite the low end grunt of a D35 but has lovely tone and long sustain. Keeps my best guitars betting knocked about when I take them out of the house.

  11. Mike says:

    Personally I don’t understand how Kompany has got near the team. Yes he’s a phenomenal player, but Kos and Mert have formed the best defence in the league. A team isn’t the best XI players.

    For the record my team would be
    Sagna Mert Kos Gibbs
    Ramsey Yaya
    Navas Ozil Silva

  12. Big Raddy says:

    Dan Welcome

    The OG vs Negredo argument is not as clear cut as you think. We Gooners love our CF who has developed hugely in his second season. Perhaps he is not as good a finisher as The Beast but OG has a “brilliant touch for a big man”

    BV. Thanks for your input. I remain unconvinced with your Jovetic argument. I hadn’t realised both players are injury prone.

    It is a great sadness to us gooners that Nasri is having a decent season pre-Brazil. One man’s “likeable guy” is another’s “odious front-bottom”

  13. Big Raddy says:

    Mike. Nice team. I would still keep Kompany but it’s just opinion.

  14. Räsp says:

    The only thing I’d add to the striker debate is that to have Negredo as second choice and then Dzeko as third, is riches in attack beyond our wildest dreams – just as well we have more goalscorers in midfield.

  15. bluemoon says:

    how can Jovetic play, if he has been injured most of the season.

  16. chas says:

    Cheers, BR.
    As good as ever.

    I think you’d have to pick Citeh players based on whether they were playing at home or away. That’s the bit that worries me, but odds are there to be overturned.
    Cmon you Gunners.

    I just saw on FB that Harry is at the Etihad with his lads, so there is an AA representation. 🙂

  17. Räsp, you clearly haven’t seen much of Jekkers. He gets goals, yes, but he’s not the full product. He’s not mobile enough off the ball, doesn’t bring other players into it and his head goes down too easily. Moody beggar, too. He reminds me a lot of Martin Chivers, the old Spuds/England CF who had a fabulous technique, head and feet, but needed a heart donation from someone with more energy and bite. Negredo is the real deal, intelligent, physical, two-footed, a total handful.
    ps Aplogies for Peterbbk or whoever. All clubs have their 10% twat quotient.

  18. Norfolk Gooner says:

    ‘morning AAers and bluevalentine, only been supporting City for nearly sixty years? you must be very young. 😀

    Excellent pre-match, as usual, Big Raddy, I’m not going to argue about the starting eleven, neither am I going to agree, I just don’t know! 😀

    GiE, The Erpingham Arms served up a very good meal last night, the woodburner kept us nice and cosy. The Unicorn is very much a local, they will probably have the City Arsenal game on live. I haven’t been in The Plough for about a year or so can’t really comment.

    It’s such a lovely sunny moring here in Norfolk that I’m feeling really optimistic so I’m going for a Gunners win 1 – 2.

  19. Just had a thought. It would be equally interesting to speculate where a City/Arsenal ‘Reserve XI’ of (maybe)
    Hart; Sagna, Koscielny, Nastasic, Clichy; Walcott, Nasri, Willshire, Cazorla, Jovetic, Negredo
    would finish in the PL
    Probably keep United out of 7th place!

  20. Big Raddy says:

    BV 😀 No Bendtner?

  21. NG, I’m 18 in the heart, 28 in the head but the rest of the kit is rather lagging behind at this stage.
    Where in Norfolk are you from? I have a certain knowledge of and association with that fine county. Learned to sail on the Broads with my school. Sailed on a trawler, out of King’s Lynn, summer of ’59. Llived in Sheringham, Old Catton (Norwich) and just outside Beccles early 1960s. Spent many Augusts trying to win the dinghy week at Brancaster in the 1980s.

  22. evonne says:

    Raddy – you’d keep BFG not Koscielny?? Nay, no, never. Sorry, first huge disagreement between us.

    But it is a brilliant idea trying to compile an integrated team, superb! Mind you if you tried doing that with say Chavs, we would be left with our starting XI anyway 🙂

    Thank you for the PM, always well worth reading

  23. 26may1989 says:

    Morning all, and thanks Raddy. Sorry I’ve been AWOL recently, Xmas festivities have been dominating.

    I’m not one of life’s pessimists but if we avoid defeat today, I’ll be impressed. City’s attacking unit is stunning, their home form is intimidating, and they are determined to make up for all their failures this season by winning today. Plus we’ve been screwed by the fixture list, of a sequence of games on Sunday afternoon, Wednesday eve away in Europe and Saturday lunchtime, meaning our lot will have had significantly less recuperation time than City’s going into the game.

    But City aren’t perfect. To disagree with Raddy a bit, I think City’s defence is pretty poor. Kompany is class but, when he’s been fit, has been erratic this year. The CB partners aren’t great: Demichelis, Lescott, Nastasic, all very error prone. FBs aren’t tip-top either. We all know they’ve had goalkeeping problems (I’d choose Pantilimon ahead of Hart). Fenandinho is an excellent DM (better in that role than Yaya, IMO, but Yaya is such a great box-to-box midfielder). But we will get chances today, City will give us that.

    Trouble is with Silva, Nasri (who is playing after his two-year sabbatical), Aguero and Negredo, plus support from others, they have so much attacking prowess. James Milner could be an important player today, his energy and commitment to the cause could be damaging.

    Tactically, it must be tempting to try and contain, and holding onto the ball will be very important today. But we have the strongest defence, we should have the confidence to hit City on the break whenever possible – they are vulnerable at the back.

  24. Raddy, sorry No. Putting Walcott in instead of Milner was almost one concession too far without having the Notso Great Dane.

  25. 26may1989 says:

    Morning bluevalentine, always good to see friendly oppo. I agree with you about Negredo, an excellent striker. One can’t really compare Giroud with him, as they play different roles in the team, but I admire Negredo’s energy, movement and clinical finishes. We should have gone for him!

  26. evonne says:

    26m – Na$ri is negotiating a new contract, so yes, he is playing again. Fat twat.

    Norfolk – sorry sir, but I cannot recommend your posts as bed time reading – instead of putting you to sleep they scare living daylights out of you!! ‘Dried blood on the boardroom floor’ and Bendtner not leaving in Jan kept me awake for hours 🙂

  27. Norfolk Gooner says:

    bluevalentine, I live between Norwich and Comer, Brancaster is a lovely place, wonderful part of the coast. I was walking on the coastal path between Morston and Blakeney yesterday, the damage done by last week’s tidal surge was incredible, quite large boats had been washed up over the salt marshes, over the path and on across the fields beyond

    Evonne, my apologies for keeping you awake for so long. That’s the power I have over women. (he said as he leeered and twirled his handlebar moustache.) 😀

  28. Big Raddy says:

    No Gibbs or Arteta, and Theo & Wilshere start

  29. Gooner in Exile says:

    Morning all, very worrying prematch Raddy 😦

    I would think City supporters will be more confident than us this morning, as you say they have a fine team and a centre forward in Aguero that strikes fear into the heart of any opposition, i do love the way he plays football, from what i’ve seen of him i don’t think i’ve ever seen him go down easily, even when the ball is going away from him and he has more chance of scoring from the penalty spot than the angle he is left with after being impeded.

    Anyway lets hope for a good game of football and an Arsenal win.

    Teams are in:




  30. evonne says:

    hee hee hee Norfolk 🙂
    So good to laugh under seriously scary circumstances

  31. GoonerB says:

    My apologies to the writers of all the great posts that I have missed recently while I have been tied down (not literally).

    Lovely report Raddy. I agree and I think Aguero would walk into our side. There are other players of theirs I like such as Kompany, Negredo, navas and Yaya but I wouldn’t necessarily feel they would stroll into our first team at someone elses expense. I would more look at them as players that would be amongst the first team regulars or if you want part of a hard-core of 18 regular first teamers.

    With the deeper midfield I wouldn’t pair Flamini and Arteta. I feel we need one player that more sits and holds, i.e one of them, and the 2nd player should be a more box to box type. Someone who can drive out of deeper midfield, avoiding the opposition midfielders attempts to close us down, and get us on the front foot.

    Wilshere is one of the best at this for me so I would start him with flamini. Rosicky is probably the 2nd best in our squad at driving out from deep with the ball and surging away from oppo midfielders. We are a forward thinking team which is why I prefer to see one of Wilshere or Rosicky play deeper next to one of Flamini or Arteta. IMO there are only a few select games where I would pair Flamini and Arteta in deeper midfield.

  32. Gööner In Exile says:

    Norfolk one of my clients (Boathouse at Burnham Overy) was internally washed out by that surge….that is the buildings contents were washed out anyway.

    Seriously scary stuff.

  33. RockyLives says:

    Great stuff BR

    Im feeling quietly positive.

    Let’s do it!

  34. mickydidit89 says:

    Having said pre Napoli we should start Arteta and Flamini in both games, I’ve changed my mind and think Arsene has got it spot on
    Reckon we’ll need two goals today

  35. fatgingergooner says:

    Theo is key today.

    City are pretty much playing 2 up top, which could leave us with a spare man when launching counters. For me, getting Theo central and making runs from out to in, in behind Demichelis, is exactly what Özil will want to see so that he can play passes through or over the top. If we do this we have a chance.

    That’s all meaningless if we don’t defend properly though! 🙂

    Will be taking baby Jack home today so will have to watch a recording, but hopefully he can inspire Jack Wilshere to come off the bench and win us the game!

    Enjoy the game all!

  36. fatgingergooner says:

    Just realised Wilshere is starting! Even better.

  37. 26may1989 says:

    Interesting, Walcott is getting behind Demichelis quite easily.

  38. 26may1989 says:

    Bollocks, rubbish defending from the corner. Nice finish by Aguero.

  39. Big Raddy says:

    Not going to plan so far

  40. 26may1989 says:

    Wilshere’s passing is erratic so far but Sagna looks to have the beating of Clichy. Just so open in the centre of the park, with us having to press.

  41. Gööner In Exile says:

    Get in!!!

  42. 26may1989 says:


  43. 26may1989 says:

    Was there actually a deflection?

  44. Great game of football

  45. Gööner In Exile says:

    Our problem is that too many midfielders are getting past Giroud before he has even received the ball….bit more patience needed now back to 1-1

  46. 26may1989 says:

    Negredo should’ve scored there, first time we’ve really been opened up.

  47. Gööner In Exile says:

    Best thing about that goal the time Ozil took to pick the right pass when others (including me screaming deliver it early) would have just forced a hard cross in the 6 yard box.

  48. Oooooh Jack on Yaya 😆

  49. Gööner In Exile says:

    Been comin on our left flank too often

  50. Shit, they’re good ………. Come on Arsenal

  51. Gööner In Exile says:

    Fuck not Kozzer! Didn’t look anything in it?

  52. 26may1989 says:

    Nuts. And Kos knackered.

  53. Looks serious for Koscielny

  54. 26may1989 says:

    Knee ligament looks like. Vermaelen is going to play most of the rest of the season, I’d have thought.

  55. Big Raddy says:

    Damage to Kos worse than conceding the goal.

    Monreal not getting enough cover from JW

    Good game though

  56. GoonerB says:

    Oh dear not looking good for kos. I have maybe an issue with the officials there. Firstly i think the cd’s played negredo offside with the ball over to zabaletta. As he was the next recipient of the ball should an offside not still be called otherwise he has an illegal head start on our cd’s running into the box

  57. Gööner In Exile says:

    If I was Arsene I’d be bold at half time.

    Wilshere off, Arteta on

    Rambo out left as trust him to work harder on left tracking back than Jack has.

  58. Gööner In Exile says:

    GoonerB in old money you would be right, these days with first second third phases not do much

  59. Big Raddy says:

    Twice our lino has wrongly given offside.

  60. Gööner In Exile says:

    Think a result of the barracking he got early on.

  61. 26may1989 says:

    Agreed Exile. And hopefully that linesman will be as bad when City are attacking as he was for us.

    A good half of football, I thought. We haven’t been terrible, we conceded a poor one from a corner and to a moment of excellent teamplay. Both sides have had other chances. We can still get back into this.

  62. Big Raddy says:

    We are playing a very open game which is making it exciting. A few better choices of pass and we would be level.

    That said, Everton were good last week but MC are excellent. The pass from YaYa to Zabaleta for the second was DB esque

  63. RockyLives says:

    Still feeling positive, but li’l Jack is annoying me so far…

    Apart from the missed passes and dreadful shot when he had a great chance to score, it’s his body language and his slowness in getting back when we lose possession.

    Sorry, I don’t normally criticize our players but he’s really off his game today and against this superb City side we can’t afford to have one player who’s not at the races.

  64. RockyLives says:

    Also generally there is often a 20 yard gap between our defensive line and our MF – tons of space for City to exploit and they have the players to do it.

    Still think we’ll win 3-2 though 😀

  65. Gööner In Exile says:

    Have to say though City are good, but we are not doing ourselves favours too often being caught 5/6 men up the pitch and leaving us 4 on 4 at the back when they break.

    More patience don’t get carried away.

    Even though I understood the selection on Wednesday I think I would have reversed Jack and Santi, and maybe Rosicky and Theo.

    City playing deep at the back because of Theo which then negates his strength, so we need more runners from midfield. Also just because they sit deep doesn’t mean we have to and stand on them, by doing so we give them the open spaces in midfield to break into when we haven’t got possession and the problem of having too much space between our attackers which isn’t really how we play.

  66. Big Raddy says:

    I would like to see Theo switch wing more often.

    Kos injury a “lasceration” not ligaments,

  67. Gööner In Exile says:

    Saw Negredo’s studs go down his knee wasn’t long ago someone else had one that showed bone it was so deep, got to wonder whether these blades are a good thing for football boots to have on the bottom, but also shows how little meat these footballers haven’t them.

  68. Here we go, come on boys ……….

  69. GoonerB says:

    Nice of them to play girouds song just before kick off to give the fans and team a lift.

  70. Big Raddy says:

    This may be unkind by shame Aguero didn’t damage his calf a few days ago !

    Now we have Navas to worry about

  71. Gööner In Exile says:

    Silly silly silly

  72. Giving the ball away ……….. not clever

  73. Big Raddy says:

    Stupid, stupid stupid.

  74. 26may1989 says:

    Sorry but that is rubbish, you cannot give the ball away that easily Sagan and flamini, hang your head in shame.

  75. Ooooooooh that was a chance, come on Arsenal

  76. 26may1989 says:

    Excellent cross from wilshere, perfect weight.

  77. GoonerB says:

    Cant expect anything else if we are going to surrender possession as easily as we have in the last 5 mins. We look like we have come out slower and more casual. Unusual.

  78. Come on Olly, the next one must go in …….

  79. 26may1989 says:

    Oh my god, we had to score one of those.

  80. GoonerB says:

    We are now playing well but the 3-1 scoreline reflects the difference in clinical goal-scoring efficiency between them and us.

  81. evonne says:

    ffs Didit, how many more is going to miss??

  82. Big Raddy says:

    Decisions not going our way. That was a penalty anywhere other than Manchester

  83. RockyLives says:

    Have the officials been bought?

    After the two non-offsides given against us in the first half, the lack of yellows for all the City professional fouls and now a blatant pen not given…

  84. 26may1989 says:

    Well someone’s going to score soon, just don’t know whether he’ll be wearing red or blue.

  85. Big Raddy says:

    That is BRILLIANT

  86. 26may1989 says:

    Theo you beauty!!!!!!!

  87. Theo Theo Theo excellent goal………..beautiful dink from Ozil

  88. 26may1989 says:

    Another crappy decision from the ref.

  89. 26may1989 says:

    Oh for fuck’s sake….

  90. Big Raddy says:

    FFS. All that work ands we were looking strong. Poor defending once again

  91. Big Raddy says:

    OG never offside. Once again a lino shafts us

    What a game

  92. 26may1989 says:

    Another wrong offside decision, might as well put City fans in as linesmen.

  93. Big Raddy says:

    Bizarre substitution

  94. 26may1989 says:

    City have been great up front but the difference feels like our defenders putting in a poor day’s work: we’ve handed them three goals.

  95. RockyLives says:

    Navas 3 fouls in front of the bent lino in that recent attack. No foul though…

  96. Big Raddy says:

    26. Agree and unusual this season.

  97. evonne says:

    wahey!! Bendy on, things are looking up

  98. 26may1989 says:

    Bendtner for Giroud? No, don’t see that.

  99. evonne says:

    why not 26? Giroud had enough chances today

  100. 26may1989 says:

    Hi Evonne. You’re right that Giroud has had chances but he’s just more dangerous than Bendtner.

  101. 26may1989 says:

    Can’t see us making it back now.

  102. evonne says:

    I hope you are wrong 26m

    The difference between the two teams is in the striking force.

  103. 26may1989 says:

    Great finish but wasn’t that a foul in he buildup?

  104. 26may1989 says:

    No it wasn’t, good goal.

  105. Big Raddy says:

    FFS. We have played well and yet made so many stupid mistakes, MC have been better than us but not 3 better

  106. There’s something not right about Jack, he didn’t play Wednesday so he should be quicker to the ball.

  107. 26may1989 says:

    Another shit offside decision. This is shocking.

  108. RockyLives says:

    Fuck me, Bendy was on side – that should have counted

  109. Big Raddy says:

    Another wrong offside call when we score.

    The standard of linesman ship has been dreadful

  110. Rasp says:

    This is the worst set of refereeing/Lino decisions I can remember. I can only think this game is rigged

  111. 26may1989 says:

    An accurate score today would be something like 7-6 to them.

  112. So many poor decisions by the ref and his team

  113. Big Raddy says:

    With better officials this could have been 5-5!

    OG & NB both scored from onside positions and a clear penalty not given

  114. GoonerB says:

    We have made errors today but the officials have made so many one sided decisions today that you could actually argue have accounted for a swing of 3 goals.

  115. Nice to see Gnabry,

  116. Rasp says:

    I cannot fathom why wenger has left Wiltshere on the pitch so long? It’s like he’s wearing lead boots. He was directly responsible for the 5th goal. There is something wrong with jack, he just doesn’t seem to be getting any fitter

  117. 26may1989 says:

    Love you, BFG.

  118. Rasp says:

    Obvious fucking dive

  119. Big Raddy says:

    I cannot remember so many elementary mistakes from us in a game.


  120. 26may1989 says:


  121. Never a penalty, Milner dived obviously

  122. Rasp says:

    That wasn’t a pen, I don’t know why the commentators didn’t see it. He was going down before he was touched

  123. chas says:

    Playing Citeh away was always going to be hard, but shit defending and playing against 14 men made it impossible.

    We can’t afford to be that open if we are to have any chance of winning the league.

  124. Rasp says:

    Appalling officiating throughout the game. The Lino denied us 4 goal scoring opportunities

  125. 26may1989 says:

    Great game. But…..

    Too many errors but I’d put a lot of that down to tiredness. Thanks to BT Sport for denying us proper recovery time.

    Ref and linesmen were utterly shit.

    I don’t feel too upset despite seeing six go in our net. With guts and determination, and nine days of recovery time, we can beat Chelsea and keep things moving.

  126. Big Raddy says:

    What can you say.

    1. We got shafted by the officials.
    2: MC are a superb side and didn’t need the help.
    3. We are very good going forward
    4. We need Walcott
    5.We were punished for every unnecessary mistake
    6. Wilshere is not at his best

    Above all, it was a tremendous game.

  127. Rasp says:

    Raddy was right about Fernandino, but that was not a game we should have lost 6:3

  128. Hendon Gunner says:

    We need a striker in the January transfer window to give Giroud a rest. He looked shattered today. Jack was not at the races today. The game reminded me of the Arsenal of recent years score a goal and Concede one moments later. We need pick ourselves up for the next game. Thankfully it is after nine days.

  129. Gööner In Exile says:

    Right then…..let’s get Agee things sorted.

    1) Refs and linesman not to blame….end of discussion, we only look at decisions against us.

    2) should of started first half how we lined up second half. Theo left and Jack right, both were much better at 3-1 down playing in those positions.

    3) only two of their goals were down to good play by them…set piece, Ozil to Flaminin horror ball, Jack holding on to it, Gnabry pass at the end.

    4) our passing and movement were off. I put it down to a mixture if tired and fresh legs, I have never seen us put so many passes behind feet, or too far in front of feet.

    5) the scoreline reflects those errors but also the pattern of scoring, Yaya played ten yards off our backline for last twenty minutes which meant he could pick up the loose balls.

    All that said we didn’t give up and we kept trying to go forward, hence the substitutions, Gnabry for Flamini who must have been close to on the floor after Naples and today’s shift. Then Olli who was stretching legs at the endof Napoli was clearly at the endof his energy levels when replaced, and to be fair to NikB he didn’t do bad when he came on.

  130. RockyLives says:

    We weren’t great today but I feel strangely proud of the boys.

    MC are excellent going forward, but I reckon we had as many scoring chances as they did (especially if you found the wrong offsides, the not-given penalty etc).

    Their finishing was more clinical.

    Some of our players looked tired and we made too many silly mistakes, but we also showed moments of brilliance.

    Chas is right that we were too gung-ho. Every time we got back in the game, instead of just controlling things for a bit we charged forward like the 7th Cavalry.

    Funnily enough, the Arsenal team that finished last season might well have got a draw out of today’s game…

    Anyway, now we have a week to regroup before the Chavs.

    I hope the lads are not too downhearted – they shouldn’t be.

  131. chas says:

    Ref and linesmen appalling….end of discussion.

  132. Rasp says:

    It’s not the end of the discussion for me GiE, I only saw the last 30 mins live and I counted 8 decisions we didn’t get or went against us

  133. Gooner in Exile says:

    But does it affect the result…..we made more mistakes that led to their goals or chances….so regardless of the ref’s erros we were putting ourselves in a difficult position, I hate Atkinson he is another of the Northern Ref Mafia, but you don’t deserve to win football matches if you make so many basic errors yourself.

  134. RockyLives says:

    I seldom disagree with you, but you’re 100% wrong about the officiating not have an impact.

    Quite apart from the incorrectly given offsides in the first half (either or both of which could have led to a goal), the not-given penalty and the not-given goal when Bendtner scored from an onside position) it was the fact that City were allowed to get away with non-stop professional fouling all game long. Zabaletta should have been booked five or six times!

    Does that mean I think we were robbed?


    We might well have lost even with fair officiating because our passing was off and we made too many mistakes. But the fact that, despite those problems, we caused City lots of their own problems at the back leads me to believe it would/could have been much closer if the ref and lino had not made so many mistakes.

  135. Rasp says:

    I agree we were not good defensively but the main problem was giving the ball away cheaply in midfield, jack is out of sorts and Ramsey is not as effective out wide

  136. Big Raddy says:

    Nor me. I think MC deserved the win but the officials helped them

  137. 26may1989 says:

    Sorry Exile, I agree with you almost every time you put fingers to keyboard, and I agree with virtually everything in your 2.50pm comment, but the officials’ performance was a major factor today. We would probably have lost had they been competent, but City got a major contribution from the men in yellow, both in attack and defence.

  138. RockyLives says:

    It’s certainly possible. Recent news has shattered the myth that the English game is immune to that stuff.

    And City have the cash and the friends-in-the-right-places to exert that sort of influence if they chose to.

    But more likely it’s just that Atkinson is a shit Northern homer ref and the linos were pathetic twunts whose main concern was to keep the home fans off their backs.

  139. 26may1989 says:

    Blimey, just seen footage of BFG having a real go at Ozil at the end of the game, apparently for not going to the away end.

    Not one of the pundits has commented on Milner taking a dive.

  140. Rasp says:

    Now I’ve calmed down Rocky, I agree with you. 2 perfectly good goals disallowed and off sides that weren’t – makes you wonder?

  141. fatgingergooner says:

    I said at the start that getting Theo central was important, but also that it was pointless if we didn’t defend, and we didn’t.

    No matter what the ref does, it wasn’t his fault we conceded 6 goals. You can’t lose the ball in key areas like we did, or allow low crosses into the box like we did and expect to get something.

    Awful defensive display. Deserved to lose playing like that at the back. Fair play to City who took advantage.

  142. RockyLives says:

    Milner’s English. English players don’t dive…

  143. LB says:

    I really thought that Wenger played the best possible defence that he could. It turned out that they all had one thing in common and that was they all made as many mistakes as each other, maybe not Szezcney but the others were all as poor as each other. Vermaelen was pretty good when he came on, although I didn’t see the last two goals.

    How many City players would get in out team? About 8 on today’s performance.

    Wishere wouldn’t get into their team; he is a pet project: slow, haphazard, poor positioning, a player who spends the majority of time on the ground with his arm in the air appealing to the referee for a free kick.

    Walcott was the one encouraging ray of hope.

  144. Rasp says:

    Milner dived and one of their goals was conceded as a result of 2 obvious fouls on Monreal right in front of the Lino that weren’t given

  145. RockyLives says:

    Well, it is partly the officials’ fault that we conceded five goals (and a penalty given for a dive): City’s second goal came straight from our fantastic goal scoring opportunity being prevented by an incorrect offside call.

    Plus fouls in the built-up to a couple of their goals.

    However, we also made stupid, stupid mistakes…

  146. Rasp says:

    David James is a moron – he doesn’t believe tiredness played a part in our performance

  147. RA says:

    That was a terrific game and that applies to both teams.

    The result was a bit distorted and if we had drawn 8:8 I would not have argued.

    Our defence was under pressure from the start, but with the loss of Kosser and chasing the game it was always going to be tough.

    The officials were affected by the crowd. Not their finest game.

    Disappointed? Of course. But on another day we will play the same and win. That’s football.

    Tin hats on lads, the moaning minnies are already out in force!

  148. 26may1989 says:

    David James is a dickhead. And he lives round the corner from me, I’m tempted to leave a little mark of my contempt on his front door!

  149. RockyLives says:

    I should add, Citeh were fantastic going forward. They’re a hell of a team and strong favourites for the title.

    But we can play a LOT better than we did today and when we’re on our top form (just as they were on their top form today) we are more than capable of beating them.

  150. RA says:

    Not sure what you are referring to Rasp, but “David James is a moron” requires no qualification.

  151. RockyLives says:

    I saw plenty of encouraging rays of hope – not least our character in trying to get back into the game every time we fell behind.

    Agree with you about Jack. He had a very poor game and his body language is really peeing me off.

  152. 26may1989 says:

    I still don’t think this is such a grim day. Championship winning teams always lose games along the way, even by three goals. This was always going to be a very tough game to win, and despite tiredness and poor officials, there was plenty of good stuff in there, against the best attacking team in the division. Yes, we contributed to our downfall, and yes, our defensive performance wasn’t good enough, but I still feel confident that there is enough ability and character in the squad to drive forward. We are still top of the league, we can pick ourselves up.

    But having only drawn with Everton, there is pressure to get all three points when we play Chelsea.

  153. Rasp says:

    Hi Redders, David James was one of the ‘experts’ assessing the game afterwards and he criticised arsene saying that it was an excuse to say our players were tired. This is the man who said a spoof painting by a monkey was a work of art!

  154. 26may1989 says:

    Rocky, I would contest the tag “strong favourites” for City. Their defence is still weak, IMO – might seem deluded to say it, given the scoreline today, but we will concede fewer goals this season than they will, and that will affect the final positions.

    I’ve always considered City to be favourites this season, but they are as beatable this season as they have been every season since the tidal wave of cash arrived from the Gulf, which is why I wouldn’t call them strong favourites.

  155. RockyLives says:

    City had 7 attempts on target to our 6.

    And I assume that our 6 does not include the two goals incorrectly disallowed…

  156. Rasp says:

    We have to try to fix whatever it is that is going wrong with our midfield. Maybe we should adjust our ‘risk assessments’ and only try the eye of a needle passes in the final third. This is the second prem game when simple passes out of midfield have failed to reach their target

  157. RA says:

    Rasper, that proves the point. Moron indeed!

  158. 26may1989 says:

    The scheduling of today’s game should never have been allowed to happen, and I said that before we lost. I’d also say it if it were City that had played on Wednesday night (after a Sunday afternoon game). TV scheduling decisions should not affect the outcome of the season, and BT Sport’s decision to put this one on Saturday lunchtime had an impact.

  159. A bit hard done by there, lads but I still think we deserved our win. Not by 6-3 though.
    One of your offsides wasn’t. With the other, in fairness, I think the lino had raised the flag for another Arsenal player nearer the ball who was deffo offside when the ball was kicked, not the ‘goal’ scorer. The cross went over the guy’s head as it happened. Still, I take the point about poor reffing & lino work.
    James definitely dived for the penalty. Shame on him.
    I didn’t think the Zabs incident was a penno. He was raising his arms to get them out of the way, the ball hit his lower body, jumped up and hit the arm.
    Your first goal was all down to a bit of dopey work by Yaya. It’s becoming a regular thing, takes some getting used to but he makes up for it in other ways.
    I’m surprised how Walcott seems to have become a really good player, I’ve always had him down as just a straight line runner, a bear of little brain.
    Your midfield 5 looked knackered from 75 mins on. How many of those guys played on Weds?
    Great game of football though.
    Seems weird. Beaten 6-3 and still the best team I’ve seen at The Etihad this season.
    Now pick yourselves up and hammer the Chavs.
    Thanks for your indulgence. Over and out.

  160. dandan says:

    Rasp 2.43 It saddens me to see such comments. The premier league is above that and no high profile game being shown world wide could possibly be bent to the extent that it would produce a 6-3 finish without being rumbled. Refs assistant had a stinker, so did our defence. But guess what, we are top of the league.

  161. Rasp says:

    Hi dandan, it’s already happened in Italy. D J Campbell was a prem player. If you read on you will see that I revised my opinion. There is however a statistically proven ‘Northern’ bias from a number of referees

  162. Rasp says:

    The defending was the main problem but that means the defending by the whole team. At times it was like the bad old times with midfielders losing possession and trotting back – not busting a gut….. I put this down to fatigue

  163. Gooner in Exile says:

    3 in 3 for Chamakh…..goal machine

  164. RockyLives says:

    Hard to disagree with any of that Blueval

    As Wenger said in his post match comments, we made too many mistakes to win the game.

    I think a fair result might have been 4-3 to you.

    Anyway, been nice chatting with you – hopefully we’ll see you again for the return fixture…

  165. Adrian says:

    Disappointing game overall, thought a 6-3 scoreline to their favor was undeserved. The fact that the team looks so tired compared to their squad puts Wenger’s selection against Napoli under the spotlight again. Perhaps a wake up call to not let us get ahead of ourselves based solely on a strong start to the season. Man City will definitely be challenging for the title till the very last day, and with such an expensively assembled squad, it’s no surprise.

  166. dandan says:

    World of difference between spot fixing and match fixing Rasp. Bias again is easy to suggest but the devil to prove statistically especially as it is a hobby horse for some blogs as I am sure you know. Glad to see you rethought that original thought.

  167. RockyLives says:

    (Actually Blueval I do disagree with one bit…):

    The lino flagging offisde for the wrong player is still a mistake, plain and simple.

  168. Gooner in Exile says:

    BlueValentine only Szczesny, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Flamini, Ozil and Giroud started on Wednesday night. Ramsey came off the bench as did Monreal. So the only thing that wore the fresh ones out today was chasing back to keep tabs on your midfield runners.

    Something that was obvious today was that your back four was less scared of our attack than we were of yours…rightly so. As when we broke your midfield was not required to get back and help as much as ours needed to to help the defence out.

  169. Rasp says:

    Any news on the kozzer injury?

  170. GoonerB says:

    I actually think it was far closer than the scoreline suggested. Being critical of us we were sloppy in midfield at times and were punished for it but we also played some marvelous attacking football and, again being critical, we do seem to need another top striker to bring us in line with City’s firepower.

    We are always considered whingers if we say it but I think the officiating today could have been the main difference. Two times the ball in the net and 2 times called offside incorrectly, and one hand-ball and no penalty given. You could argue that with Giroud’s they stopped playing but of those 3 incidents at least 2 should have come our way and resulted in goals.

    I would also still argue that with their second goal that Negredo is offside with Toure’s ball out to Zabaletta which gives him an unfair advantage running into the box and scoring within 2 seconds of him being offside. I would also even argue that Milner was already falling before contact with Chezzer so it could be argued that he has fallen over of his own accord and Chezzer didn’t initiate this with a foul. Also he seems to put the leg out to make contact which strictly speaking could be considered as him deliberately kicking Chezzer.

    AgainI wouldn’t expect both those to go our way but you could expect one and that either the linesman picks up Negredo starting his run offside or the ref picking up that Milner looked for it and went over before contact was made. At some point this season a decision like that will be called that way.

    Maybe they slightly edged it but I think the ref has made this game look far more definitive than it was. I mention it now because in 3 days (maybe not even that long) all of this is conveniently forgotten and the common line will be that we are miles behind them. I feel we are not and are still a slight work in progress but not far away.

  171. RA says:

    Bit early for me to start analysing but …… although Giro has the heart of a lion, and gives his all, he does need help up front. For example, a brilliant player like Aguerro has Negredo or Dzeko to help share the load.

    In addition, much though I admire Flamini’s organising skills and also Arteta’s skill and nous, I suspect the first is not really top notch and the other is ageing and slowing down.

    I am no expert admittedly, but a younger, stronger, faster defensive midfielder would help shore up the back line seems important to me.

    I am probably talking rot, but today the back four seemed to have sod all support, or were too easily knocked off the ball and gave Citeh a clear run on goal, a bit like on Wednesday and against Everton.

    A Vieira like player, hard to come by, I know, would transform the midfield in the way Toure does for Citeh, so maybe another German like Bender or perhaps a Pogba look a like would do the job – they are out there. 🙂

  172. Adrian says:

    Koscielny’s injury looks worse than it is, basically just a deep cut in the knee. Thank god it’s nothing worse.

    9 days for the lads to buckle up and show what we can really do against Chelsea.

    Lastly, any comments on mertersacker’s row with ozil at the end of the game? If I understand correctly it’s cause ozil walked straight down to the tunnel without applauding the away fans?

  173. Who fancies writing about it?

  174. Rasp says:

    I don’t know what your point is dandan, do you want to talk about the game or assess my blogging? I make no excuses for being passionate. There will be more revelations about match fixing in this country before the end of the season I predict

  175. RA says:

    Very true, GoonerB.

  176. RockyLives says:

    I agree with every word.

    And I agree with you too 🙂
    Ideally our DM would have Arteta’s finesse with the Flamster’s energy and combativeness.

  177. Rasp says:

    Top comment goonerB you summed it up much better than I could. City were the better team all in all and deserved to win marginally, but in reality we should have at least had a draw if the important decisions had been called correctly

  178. RockyLives says:

    It’s funny that when Arsenal are on the wrong end of bad decisions, it never seems to be a story in the media.

    I think it’s because Arsene tries never to make excuses and seldom criticizes the officials. If those decisions had gone against the Chavs, Maureenio would be going mental and it would be all over the news… Ditto Ferguson…

  179. Rasp says:

    I agree Rocky, I thought arsene was very measured in his post match interview and still James criticised him. I don’t expect it will change, we are disliked by the dinosaurs of the media for putting beautiful football ahead of pragmatism

  180. r0blucci says:

    Kozzer injury.

    Look very bad..

  181. dandan says:

    Oh Dear Rasp. Seems I have done it wrong again. I just thought match fixing was a bit extreme, never mind I will leave it there. Enjoy your Blogging.
    Just remember we lost 5 – 0 in our run to our first double, so the occasional stuffing is par for the cause, where the Arsenal and success are concerned and nothing to worry about.

  182. RockyLives says:

    Just a scratch…

  183. RA says:

    It seems that my opening comment managed to get under the radar, not that that was my intention.

    But I really did enjoy the game. The technical purists will tell us that it was rubbish because there were 9 goals scored — bollix — there should be more games like that only with us wining, of course.

    It could just as easily have been 8:8 and I wish it had been and fie on the ‘purists’, and it was a pleasure to see such talent out there, and I genuinely believed we could have pulled City back until the lads started to tire late in the game.

    I am gutted to lose and it could have been different with better officials, but I cannot wait to see the return game so that we can get our own back while winning the league and I hope it is just as exciting, maybe 10:4, at least!! 🙂

  184. Rasp says:

    Dandan, you haven’t done anything wrong, we’re all different , injustice is what really riles me. Please continue to enjoy your blogging here on AA

  185. RA says:

    Blimey, Rocking Robin, just a scratch?

    You have been drinking with too many Mounties thinks I.

  186. Big Raddy says:

    RA . Agree. It was a really entertaining game.

    I fear Wilshere and Ramsey will be back in the classroom with Bouldie looking at how to assist your defence

  187. Big Raddy says:

    RA it’s a Monty Python reference. The Black Knight.

  188. evonne says:

    six in the City 🙂 oh well, our turn to eat the pie

    City’s attacking force is next to none in EPL and CL. I know this is not going to be a popular comment but they deserved to win, their attacking was formidable. We simply had no chance. A 4 goal difference is a tad much, but not that much. Giroud, again, missed all his chances. Without a strong striker we will not win anything this season.

  189. evonne says:

    3 goal difference, sorry

  190. RA says:

    Just had another wander around the other blogs and as it has gone quiet on here, I will tell you one of the views that left me having to push my lower up.

    “Chamahk has shown the sort of goal scoring ability that Wenger was too impatient to wait for. He keeps scoring and we should buy him back’.

    Eeeeeeeeeek – I have slipped into a different Universe when I was not looking. [Of course, if he scores against Chelsea again I might have to reconsider.] 🙂

  191. RA says:

    Rockingham is a Black Knight, Raddy?

    And he always seemed such a nice boy with a flair for writing, not for sticking lances up the jacksies of the good guys. 🙂

  192. RA says:

    Oh dear, Jack. 🙂

    Arsenal’s home-grown star Jack Wilshere is facing an FA rap after he appeared to make an unsavoury gesture towards home supporters at the Etihad on Saturday.

    The 21-year-old – was caught by BT cameras presenting a middle figure towards the City support, moments after he had a crucial appeal for a corner kick turned down.

    Wilshere could face repercussions from the FA as Liverpool’s Luis Suarez was handed a one match suspension following a similar incident at Fulham in December 2011 .

    “I didn’t see that,” said Arsene Wenger when asked about the incident.

    “I don’t know if he did it. If he did it and he receives a ban, we will have to accept it.”

  193. fatgingergooner says:

    Wengers confidence in his structure and players is admirable, but it’s often been his downfall in big games in the last 10 years.

    His attitude of ‘if we play to the max of our ability then what the opposition do is irrelevant’ is great when your team is superior, but when your starting line up is barely on par with the opposition it just falls apart.

    We can’t keep heading into big games, Espescially away from home, without taking the opponents strengths into consideration when coming up with a gameplan. It makes for a great watch, which is probably why so many neutral fans want us to do well, but unless our team is stronger than the opposition then the majority of the time it will lead to failure.

    I hope I’m wrong.

  194. Gooner in Exile says:

    RA I think we could all predict comments like that about Chamkh…next people will be saying Pulis is a better coach than Wenger because he is getting more goals from him that Arsene could.

    Just watched Arsene’s post match on the BBC, he is rightly critical of the team defensive performance, and I agree with RA that the defence were being left to fend for themselves far too often today, and thats because we didn’t defend well enough from the top of the pitch when they had possession.

  195. Big Raddy says:

    RA. Youtube it.( MP & Black knight)

    No reason to look at other sites, as BV said every club has a 10% twat quotient

  196. Gooner in Exile says:

    FGG the question is….have we got the personnel to deal with City’s attack? If not then doesn’t really matter how much you focus on it, its going to be pretty hard to stop them when they play like they did today. So all you can try and do is outscore them or make them think about us more.

    We were attacked far less down their right flank second half….simple reason because putting Theo over there kept Zabaleta honest, Clichy is not the best attacking full back so we didn’t have to worry about him quite so much. But Pellegrini could then put Navas on to overcome that problem.

    I think we may have faired better today had Gibbs started just because i think he is better defensively than Monreal and would probably have kept Wilshere in check a little more and there would have been a bit more understanding up that flank both in and out of possession.

    To some extent Jack seems to be on a different wave length to many of his teammates at the moment, he was complaining if the ball wasn’t where he expected it which is not something that the likes of Rambo, Ozil, Santi, and TR7 do to often.

  197. Bayonne Jean says:

    RA, during our feed, we caught a brief glimpse of JW flashing the “We’re #1! ” signal to the City supporters; unfortunately, he used the wrong digit. Likely to see a ban, though the way he played today (apart from his strike on goal) time on the bench may be good for him.

  198. RA says:


    I think LB had a point earlier which goes with your comment, and certainly today Jack was not at the races. His day reached its nadir when he needlessly lost the ball in midfield and that led to one of their goals.

    Injuries such as he has had take more out of a player than even they realise. He will come good but perhaps a break from football until the New Year might help.

  199. Bayonne Jean says:

    Also, commentators here were constantly claiming that the defender had a “slight deflection” on Theo’s first goal, affecting Pantelimon, when repeated replays showed no such thing. Truth was that the keeper was simply pants on the play…..

  200. RA says:


    I did not see it at the time, but a photo on the net makes it clear that it was a single digit, and he seemed to be saying ‘rotate’! 🙂

    We appear to have sent similar comments at much the same time.

  201. RA says:

    BJ, @5:23

    Agreed. 🙂

  202. RA says:

    Got to go get a burger! 🙂


  203. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Evening all,

    Couldn’t find a pub to watch the game. Felt like Norfolk 🙂

    Just seen the Rob Lucci link to Kozzer cut. Anyone with a child and a bicycle will have seen one of those every week. Loved one of the comments beneath “I’m praying for him”. Nice thought but a little ROLF worthy 🙂

    Was Verm good?

  204. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Sounds like their attack was every bit as good as I warned my son they would be. Oh well, you can afford to lose the odd away game.

    Maybe easy for me to sound a bit “oh well” as I didn’t have to watch it, so I’ll back off.

    Last comment. I like the sound of RA’s suggestion about a DM 🙂

  205. evonne says:

    what do you mean DidIt ‘was Verm good?’ We let in 6 (six) goals ffs

    And you Ollie, don’t ever say he is brilliant coz he aint

  206. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Ouch Evonne

    Never ever said he was brilliant. He’s what we’ve got, so I look for all his positives 🙂

    As for Verm, don’t know when he came on, or how he played. He may not have been responsible for all six 🙂

  207. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Look, I don’t mean to make light of the result, so I’ll clear off and eat some expensive cold roast beef.

  208. evonne says:

    Roast beef?? no Micky, pie is on tonight’s menu for us

    Verm was not better or worse than others. We were not that bad, not bad at all, but Shitty were awesome. Not defensively, but going forward nobody could stop them

  209. MickyDidIt89 says:

    For comfort food, pie is top equal with stew, and bangers ‘n mash.
    Three goals away from home is good going, and delighted to read that Theo got a brace.
    Let’s go eat.

  210. RA says:

    I think Evonne is demonstrating her linguistics skills, Mickey. 🙂

    ‘Humble’ pie, is on the menu for our lady blogger.

  211. evonne says:

    RA – he knows what I mean, not just a pretty face our Micky

    Yeah, I suppose that is a positive – we scored 3 against City, yeepeee!!

  212. RA says:


    Actually, I think the Verm was OK, and if we were short of a DM/AM midfielder I would play him there.

    He is quick, aggressive and full of beans, and despite being a little rusty after getting splinters in his ass from the bench, I thought he was not the weak link today.

  213. Gooner in Exile says:

    Strangely Micky I don’t think the centre backs were at fault for any of their goals except maybe the first one when Koz fell asleep marking Aguero.

    They were having to cope with players running at them having been presented the ball by our midfield.

  214. RockyLives says:


    The BFG was arguably a fraction slow for Silva’s goal – but that’s being harsh: it was a very good goal.

    Verm did well when he came on. I don’t feel that we conceded more goals because he was there in place of Kozzer.

  215. Gööner In Exile says:

    I think BFG was looking very leggy towards the end. He probably has to play differently when no Koz to cover him.

    I’m probably not alone in thinking Ozil needs a rest. I know the theory is he will find his fitness on the pitch but we do have other bodies. Maybe for £42.5m the Board want their pound of flesh. But given the way we played in Napoli wasn’t that the ideal game for a rest?

    As LB said today Theo was a blessing today he looked hungry, and I think his position second half will be best with the other players around him.

    I would not be averse to starting something like this against Chavs:


  216. Gooner in Exile says:

    From BBC

    Midfielder Mesut Ozil apologised for not acknowledging the Arsenal fans at the end of the game.

    He wrote on his Facebook page: “You have been brilliant to me and I know you had travelled a long way and spent your money to support us.

    “I was upset with the result and know I should have come to you to say ‘thank you’ and I know it is a big Arsenal tradition win, lose or draw.”

  217. It would have been supremely optimistic of any Arsenalite to believe we were likely to get the better of the home side at the Etihad today.
    Given the statistics showing how prolific they are at home and their meanness to visiting teams, I am pleased that we managed to bulge their net on three occasions. We can also count ourselves unlucky not to have recorded more strikes against them.Therefore we are worthy leaders of the Premeirship and we acquitted ourselves well against those who are considered to be the favourites to top the pile when all is said and done. I am pleasantly surprised at how deservedly well Arsenal have occupied the top spot. We are still there and after this tussle we have a good period in which to recuperate before we tackle Chelsea who are also supposed to be more worthy contenders than we are. Now, that for me is the one we Must win. Theo Walcott has long been a favourite of mine. Would it not be clever to have him playing alongside Giroud regularly in order to increase our goal threat? Ramsey has scored more than his whack so far this season. He can now be deployed in a more defensive role in order to give Olly and Theo more scope to do what they need to do. We want to win the league and I cant help thinking that Olly would score more if Theo was level or even in front of him. Most of Giroud’s holding of the ball is wasted on waiting for the midfield to catch up with him, which they sometimes never dot This causes the need for a backward pass and the build stalls so we allow the opposition time to re-group. Armchair Coach (that’s me).I would love,JUST LUV IT if we win the league.

  218. dhakka09 says:

    Walcott showed his value to the team today. With Giroud’s hold-up and Walcott’s sneaking-in behind enemy lines, we’d have an alternate route to our tippy-tappy intricate midfield stuff.

    Strangly, I am not too disappointed with the boys today. Sure they made mistakes that City punished, but we did score 3 goals at their fortress and had 2 legitimate goals disallowed by linesman who’ll prolly go for his eye-checkup on Monday, not to mention the penalty not given for us and given to their player who was already hitting the deck before contact.

    City deserved the win today (just) but don’t be fooled even for a second by falling under media’s hypnotism trance, that they were 3 goals better than us. They were not.

    Just watched BBC MOTD and while Linekar and Shearer were head-over-heels in race to bash Arsenal and kiss City’s boots, Henry kept calm and took it on the chin. #respect

    Be afraid Chelsea, be very afraid.

  219. Gooner in Exile says:

    Hmmm Just seen that Steve Clark got sacked by WBA today….think thats a bit harsh on a guy who has been making good progress with an average group of players.

    More worrying is that he might end up back in the dugout at the bus stop in Fulham

  220. arnie says:

    Apologies all, for being away. Missed the game, except for following the score on mobile. Great pre-match Raddy, and lovely discussion all. Have not seen the game, but read through all comments. A priori, a loss would not have been unexpected. Letting in 6 perhaps a bit disappointing, but 3-6 is better than 0-3. Plenty of positives (fighting hard, Theo’s fantastic return, no serious injuries — sorry Kozzer’s is a bruise) and negatives (slow defence, not closing down fast, somewhat uninspired midfield, poor officials0. Time to take the positives, cover the negatives, and move on.

    Great game, a tough game out of the way. Two disappointing games, well perhaps two and a half, crucial game againt Chavs coming up. Onwards and upwards!!!!

    Finally, very positive and dignified show on AA, we can pat our own backs. Because no one else will!!!! 😀 😀 😀

  221. arnie says:

    dhakka: how do you watch MOTD from the US? Asking because I will have to try all sorts of tricks when I land in the US (Thursday next week). 😀

  222. dhakka09 says:

    arnie: the same way that I watch the matches; illegally 🙂 I am the cyber version of Al Capone around here 😉

  223. arnie says:

    ha ha ha, dhakka!!!! 😀 😀 😀 Motning all.

  224. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Motning to you too Arnie and 09.

    Thanks for Verm responses RA, Exile and Rocky.

    Liking the look of your Chav line up. Have said for a few seasons that Theo would score even more cutting in from the left, however, in line with your more fluid approach, he could switch sides and give the slower/more vulnerable of oppo. full backs a hard time. Great to have his freshness and goals back. Very timely.

  225. arnie says:

    Motning, Micky. Did not yet get to see Theo cutting in from the left, yet. Will try and watch soon. But very nice idea. If this is the role Theo is to play generally, then the questions are: 1) who plays on the right? Jack? 2) what happens when Poldi is back, which is soon, and when The Ox is also back? Hmmmm …..

  226. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Just to clarify some of my “Didit does bang on” points.

    Ollie: does a great job, but have always been in the camp that a speedy world class striker would be very nice indeed.

    Theo: I said last season that he was our most valuable player. What I meant was not that he was our best player, rather our most irreplaceable in terms of what he offers with speed, goals, and assists.

    DM: Four long years I have now believed a world class DM would stiffen the defence and liberate our attack. In fact, last summer, I said this kind of player would win us more points than a new striker. Still think so. We can score goals.

  227. MickyDidIt89 says:


    I wrote a post once saying how Poldi and Theo were both on the wrong sides. Poldi will always score more cutting across onto that howitzer of a left boot.

    Also, I believe Poldi will prove a good deputy for an Ollie breather, through the middle.

  228. arnie says:

    Micky: Interesting, and not in an English sense of the word! I am hearing this the first time. I see the point, sort of, though the proof of the pudding ….. Bring it on, I say …. 😀 😀

  229. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Nine days rest before Chelsea game. We will be ready for that one.

    City will have dropped points away at Fulham, we win, all service resumed 🙂

  230. arnie says:

    Yes, exactly, lots to play for!!!!! The Shitty B team did well against Bayern away, which is a pity, but still …. On with the show!!! 😀 😀

  231. MickyDidIt89 says:

    My “linguistic skills” ROLF
    I’ll have you know I got A’s in both English Language and English Lit O Levels. So there. The clever bit, was only writing down words I did know how to spell. On AA, I am more elastic, and totally “ain’t bovvered” what people think 🙂

  232. arnie says:

    Micky, and that would have been at a time when O level grades mattered!!! Before grade inflation and all the shambles ….. 😛

  233. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Did Bayern have anything to play for. Pretty sure, they had already qualified.
    Mind you, City are very good and my tip for the title, but that doesn’t mean they won’t drop points and if we continue the we have been, we can still pip them.
    Theo to the rescue 🙂

  234. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Oh yes Arnie, and to top it all, spelling mattered 🙂

  235. arnie says:

    Yes, all said and done, we are doing pretty well. Will be there or thereabouts at the half way stage. We want to win the full marathon. No prizes for the half marathon, except perhaps for limited bragging rights. No team can continue throughout with the same intensity. Shitty will start dropping more points, some time or the other.

    Unfortunately, we faced a very tough Shitty side away at the top of their game. Never mind, we will bounce back. We need to do this quick though. A good game against the Chavs, and confidence will be back!!!! 😀 😀

  236. MickyDidIt89 says:


    Just had a brilliant thought. City will be playing in London on the last shopping weekend before Christmas.

    Methinks they will be overcome by the bright lights, and their minds will all be on the nasty expensive jewellery they’ll be buying for each other 🙂

  237. Big Raddy says:

    It’s weird, we shipped 6 and yet I thought we were robbed!!

    Delusional may be the word

  238. arnie says:

    Micky: ha ha ha!!!!! good idea!! Glittering lights or not, shatty stand a fair chance of losing some points away to Fulham!!!! D

  239. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Damn, I can’t wait for Monday and the CL Draw. Have decided Real would be ideal.

  240. Big Raddy says:

    MUK 7.26 And I thought I was delusional

  241. arnie says:

    Motning, Raddy. Is the sun shining bright in CPH? Grey day in Porto, but somehow, and despite all the slimey creatures shifting in the woodwork, I am feeling reasonably good!!!! 😀 😀

  242. Big Raddy says:

    Motning arnie. Horrible morning here – cold and pouring with rain. Forecast for more of the same.

    They serve a decent glass in wine in Porto

  243. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Doesn’t the Phony Pharaoh (aka Al Fayed) still own both ‘Arrods and Fulham?
    How hard could it possibly be for him to set up a little stall outside the away dressing room, with only one of each of his horrible jewel encrusted £100k watches. Then stand back, and watch the Oil Boys squabble and fight over who buys what.

  244. arnie says:

    That is right, Raddy. I am sitting in the airport lounge at the moment. I was hesitant to start so early in the day. But since you mention, what the heck! Good idea. Red will be my preference. Douro, or Dao or Alentejo!!! I have a slight preference for Alentejo, particularly if Touriga Nacional is involved. You are a wine person, you may know better! 😀 😀

  245. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Wrong bloody country. That’s for the final 🙂

  246. arnie says:

    Micky: Final as well!! Despair not. I will be back in the UK by the afternoon!!!!

  247. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Raddy, a wine person? ROLF, he’ll down anything. In Dortmund, I had to perform the Heneiken Manouvre on the old boy just to get him erect again for the journey from bar to stadium.

  248. MickyDidIt89 says:

    Bye for now.

  249. arnie says:

    ha ha ha, Micky!!!!! OK, decision made. Douro, then. Not bad at all!!!! 😀 😀

  250. Big Raddy says:

    Had to be the Duoro. I am envious.

  251. arnie says:

    Raddy: 😀 😀 😀 😛

  252. evonne says:

    that DidIt does bang on 🙂

    no idea why but I am only mildly upset about yesterday. Perhaps because I expected it, or maybe because we are still on top, or even that we were not poor and we tried. The result exaggerates the superiority of Shitty.

    But the way I was sure we were going to get kicking, I am convinced we will beat the Chavs. They were extremely lucky to win yesterday

  253. arnie says:

    Evonne: Love that. All fine then. No worries, no crisis, all according to plan, just the small matter of ensuring we defeat the Chavs. Simples. 😀 😀

  254. Morning all

    Does anyone want to write something for today? I have a dog to walk but will write something when I get back if no-one else has offered.

  255. Gööner In Exile says:

    Any updates on Kozzers knee, looked like a deepish cut, probably need more than a bit of glue, and in an area where there is a lot of movement so could take a while to heal.

    That means it’s Sagna backup centre back which whilst not being ideal is not the biggest worry. The bigger worry is what if our injury luck strikes again and we lose Verm or BFG.

    Also means Arsene has a decision to make on whether to make Verm team captain, thought he did nothing wrong yesterday but I’m not sure he should have the armband when all we want him to concentrate on is defending.

  256. Maybe it should be you GiE, you’ll pose more questions than me. Still walking the dog.

  257. Big Raddy says:

    I am sure TV will be captain.

  258. Peaches I need your address. Sick about the game yesterday 😦

  259. Gööner In Exile says:

    Peaches, I’ll stick something very short up.

  260. Gööner In Exile says:

    It looks like you’ve started though so I’ll leave you to it.

    Haven’t really got time to write one if I’m honest as I have family duties today.

  261. Don’t worry GiE, I’ve done something.

    New Post …………………

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: