Monaco by the Numbers

1. In the 164 European Cup games in which a team lost 1-3 at home in the first leg only two have gone on to win the tie.

2. In the Champions League knock out stages no team has ever overcome this deficit playing away. It has only been achieved when the team was at home for the second leg.

3. Arsenal have won their last 4 away and 8 of our last 9 PL games (12 of 14)

4. Monaco had 5 first team players missing in the first leg. Carvalho and Toulalan should return tonight.

5. Monaco have conceded only 7 goals in 14 home games in Ligue 1 this season and just 2 in 7 CL games.

6. Arsenal have scored every game bar one since Oct 2014

7. Arsenal have had 21 different goal scorers this season. We are awash with finishers.

8. If we lose tonight it will be the 5th year running we have not reached the quarter finals

9. Monaco are 1/10 on to go through and AFC 5/1 (Paddy Power). Yet AFC are favourites to win the game (13/10)

10. Arsenal have won only once on our last 6 visits to France (though Monaco is not in France is it?)

Right, that’s enough of that nonsense.

Looking at the above one would think it is a waste of time trying and Mr Wenger should select the entire Ladies team. If we are to go down in Monaco …. I leave the rest to you imagination ……

26 years ago we went to Anfield and won against the odds, We also did it when overcoming a 3-1 defeat in the final of the Inter Cities –  that victory was in Black and White, but still a decade after Spurs last won the title 😀

The Stade Louis is hardly a hotbed of football fanaticism (the last time I was there was for an Eagles concert) and I expect there will be more Gooners than Monaco fans.

We have to score a few and quite frankly are as likely to score 4 or 5 as 3 so I look forward to a very attacking line -up. It is often said that in training Mr Wenger has the players switch positions so they understand the thinking required for a defensive or offensive position, as such Welbeck must be able to play CB if required. Santi is an ideal fullback; they are instructed not to tackle but to jockey and he has the perfect physique for such a job.

My Team:

Ospina

    Cazorla    Welbeck      Coquelin     Rosicky

Walcott     Ramsey     Ozil

Alexis     Giroud     Akpom

If we had more forwards available I would play them instead of Le Coq and Tomas.

I feel 56% confident of winning the game and 14% confident of winning the tie.

n.b. If any of the above stats are wrong, blame the internet and Margaret Thatcher.

COYRRG

written by Big Raddy

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247 Responses to Monaco by the Numbers

  1. aizedlittlemozart says:

    #MiracleinMonaco

  2. Hlanganani Thodlana says:

    You just made my day…………classic this is.

  3. mickydidit89 says:

    And playing Ospina isn’t deemed negative? 🙂

    Oh dear, they’ve added two quality defenders since the first leg. Could get ugly.

    Anyway, thank you Raddy

  4. GoonerB says:

    4-1 to the arrsenal, 4-2 to the arrsenal, 4-1 to the arrsenal, 4-2 to the arrsenal…… and repeat……..

    I can’t decide between these score-lines.

  5. GoonerB says:

    Big thanks Raddy, however Micky is right…Ospina…Pffff…where is your sense of adventurous attacking spirit Raddy? I would bring Zelalem in between the sticks. Apparently he has a great touch and is a great passer of the ball so balls back from BFG will be no problem, and the distribution to our players from the keeper will be top level.

  6. GoonerB says:

    I think Le Coq, Santi and Ozil pick themselves on current form. Giroud is a given and we all want Alexis playing (which also has a statistic probability of greater than 95% anyway) so the big decision for me is Walcott or Welbeck for the attacking right?

  7. mickydidit89 says:

    Saw your comment yesterday GB.
    Don’t get soppy. My aura is an illuminated neon plate I wear on my head. You’re welcome to represent me in my absence, but it does need three new triple A batteries.

  8. mickydidit89 says:

    Is Easter fit, as that could be another conundrum. Brazilian or German. One faster to counter the counter, the other better at air raids

  9. mickydidit89 says:

    Ollie Stud
    Mesut, Sanchez, Santi Lock Pickers
    Rambo Thrusters
    Coq The Interceptor
    Monreal Bell The Overlappers
    German Kos Air raiders
    Akpom Rush goalie

  10. GoonerB says:

    Thanks Micky but the last time I tried inserting 3 triple A batteries into yours truly it sent me a bit mental and I ended up going all Manciniesque.

  11. Rasp says:

    Fabulous PM Raddy – we have to defy the odds ….. simples 😀

    I reckon Rambo will be our most important player this evening. He’s coming back to form, he will cover every blade and bust a gut to get into their box – but more importantly he has proved to be a big game player. If we get the 3 goals I expect Rambo to get at least one of them.

  12. RA says:

    Great Post, Raddish. 🙂

    Well except for the first bit. That reminded me of one of those films about WWII when agents received radio messages telling them what their targets were.

    “The red goose swims only on Thursday”; “Carvalho and Toulalan should return tonight”; “The chicken ate the rooster”; “If we lose tonight it will be the 5th year running”

    Still, at least GoonerB will enjoy the minutiae of the info. [He is clearly doolally – and should never be in charge of a camel.] 🙂

  13. chas says:

    Great pre-match, BR.

    Loving your team and the sentiment. We don’t really have much to lose tonight as the damage was done in the first leg. This means we have much to gain. 🙂

    MWG today. Need to score early, then one every ten minutes thereafter.
    Up The Arse.

  14. RA says:

    I saw the SKY extended highlights of the Wham match twice last night – and belatedly can add my penny’s worth to previous comments – Rambo was close to his imperious best, last man in defence one minute, up in the forward line screaming for the ball the next.

    Theo, hardly ever runs WITH the ball. He set off at great speed into non-space in the centre of their defence making it difficult to receive a pass, or got the ball on the wing, checked and passed back to someone who was in a worse position.

    Thought he had got passed that by now. So he will definitely be in the team tonight then. 🙂

    Seeing the game, rather than hearing about it second hand, it was much more enjoyable than I expected, and once Giro scored the anxiety of the crowd stopped being an issue.

    Playing away from the Ems may well be an advantage as the away fans will only transmit unquestioning support – rather than the moans and anxiety that comes with being at home.

    COYG

  15. chas says:

  16. GoonerB says:

    Your assessment is entirely correct Redders.

    Rasp, you fancy Rambo. Which other 5 make up your favoured 6 from midfield through to forwards?

  17. Rasp says:

    Hi GB,
    Coquelin, Santi, Alexis, Giroud, Theo, Ozil
    I’d take the Ox instead of Theo had he been fit.

  18. RA says:

    Is that it GB,’Your assessment is entirely correct Redders.’?

    I would have thought that as Didit’s frontispiece (batteries included) that you would have come out fighting and liberally spraying worming tablets around.

    So disappointing!! 🙂

  19. ‘morning all, a refreshingly new approach to pre-match posts from the Big Raddy, well done.

    Basically we need to stop them scoring, if we can do that then we have every chance of getting the three goals we need.

    So, my starting line-up would be :-

    Ospina

    Bellerin – 97hp London Omnibus – Gibbs

    Ramsey Le Coq

    Cazorla Sanchez Ozil Welbeck

    Giroud

    I think it only fair to count the bus as two players. 😀

  20. RA says:

    Rasper/GB

    Rambo, Le Coq
    Sanchez, Ozil, Santi
    Giro

  21. RA says:

    Damn!

    I meant;

    Rambo, Le Coq
    Sanchez, Ozil, Welly
    Giro

  22. wally says:

    I looked once and thought you’d put the team upside down. I looked again and said huh? A third time and I laughed.
    Well done.
    I don’t care if we win or not today. CL is for next years team. For this team, it’s all about the league and FA Cup.

  23. GoonerB says:

    Rasp, your 10.59 line up. Am I miscounting but if you add Ramsey to that you are playing a back 3 as Ramsey would make it 7 outfield players through midfield and strikers?

  24. Wally you’ve raised an important question, just what is the priority tonight?

  25. Rasp says:

    Oops, I thought you and the ref might miss that GB 😆

    OK, so I sacrifice Theo I suppose 😦

  26. Rasp says:

    But now I look at it, Coquelin may be the one AW leaves on the bench ……..

  27. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Cheers Raddy

    Monaco were very lucky at our place so we are more than capable of turning them over. I think it will be a close game with us edging it 5-2.

    Bit gutted ime not going really. 69 was giving it all the bigun about sorting tickets but the geezer cant even sort an internet connection. You cant trust an artist Raddy.There idea of topping themselves is killing some one else. One wrong word they try and commit suicide by chopping your ear off.

    I had this vision of going out there and been seduced by some rich older women smelling of Lavender. I admit, I find women who wear leopard skin and looked great back the 1960s very attractive.

    instead ime stuck in the office getting hounded by some git from India insisting I was involved in an accident. You cant get rid of these people Raddy. You can threaten them with violence, swear at them, and tell them you know there mother, but it makes no difference, they still think you fell over at work.

    Oh yeah, Ramsey will score twice.

  28. mickydidit89 says:

    Oh I see, Ant has decided he’s Irish today I see.

    How very convenient 🙂

  29. arnie says:

    what a fantastic PM. Just the right sentiment, and a WWII Enigma theme. 🙂 very very nervous. I would prefer 4-1 but would take a 4-2.

    of course Ospina is playing just in case this goes to penalties. Welbz rather than Theo for me, based on current form. At least Welbz will keep running all the 95 mins.

    COYG. 🙂

  30. Rasp says:

    My priority would be:

    Start cautiously and try to get control of the game ….. don’t concede ….. slowly become more adventurous and try to get 1 up by half time

    After half time keep it tight again and keep them pinned back in the hope that we will get the 2nd early on and leave us 30 mins to score the decisive 3rd ….. AND DO NOT CONCEDE

    Obviously the goals are what are going to win us the tie, but the way we defend will be crucial.

  31. GoonerB says:

    Redders (11.14) yep sorry that is all I’ve got at the moment.

    Ras; Santi, Ozil and Ramsey all behind the slower Giroud? Only Sanchez with any pace. Will it work? Have we had problems with this kind of set up in the past, too many ball players but not enough pace and penetration?

    Maybe their understanding is better than earlier in the season and a slower paced team with less runners behind and with more players that like to get on the ball can now work where before it hasn’t.

    Leave out Coquelin? The protection, rock and platform that allows the others to attack with more freedom? Will we see the 7 men caught upfield scenario with 40m of space in midfield for the opposition to run straight at a back 2 which includes the slower Mertesacker?

    All food for thought. My choice would be to play Coquelin and play 2 from 3 out of Santi, Ramsey and Ozil and to have pace either side of Giroud. The other alternative is to play Welbeck up top and then you have the extra pace on top of Sanchez and could more easily accommodate 3 slower ball playing midfielders, but then everyone was saying how well Ramsey works off Ollie. Do we know if he would work as well off Danny?

    Decisions decisions. I feel if we are to win this tie then 2 things need to happen. We have to be clinical with the chances that come our way and AW has to get the balance spot on. We will need the whole of the 90 minutes to turn this tie around and be effective from the start, so if we spend the first 65 looking out of sorts with the wrong balance it will be too late by the time it is changed.

  32. RA says:

    Rasp,

    Your idea to leave out Le Coq deserves an afternoon in the stocks for subliminally condemning Arsenal to a re-run of the first leg fiasco.

    Quelle catastrophe. 🙂

  33. GoonerB says:

    Rasp, I agree with not being too gung-ho but say we need a goal between 20-30 minutes, then a 2nd just before or after half time. At this point nerves will creep into them. The third should come at about 70 minutes. At this point we are going through and they have to come out. AW makes a brilliant substitution to give us a greater counter-attack threat rather than throw on a multitude of defensive players and invite Monaco onto us in an attempt to recreate the Allamo, and we hit them with the 4th as they expose themselves. They score a consolation goal later on.

  34. mickydidit89 says:

    “Start cautiously” eh Rasp?

    So wrong. I want them coming out of the tunnel sweating, gurning and foaming at the mouth. Whistle peeps, and we go at them like demented loons

  35. mickydidit89 says:

    Exhausted. Siesta.

  36. Rasp says:

    RA, not my idea to leave out Le Coq, he’d play in my team, I wrote “Coquelin may be the one AW leaves on the bench” …. not I 🙂

    Micky, had we resisted the temptation to play in the way you describe when we pegged them back to 1:2, we would be favourites tonight.

    We must not let them mug us again on the break. We have to get in their faces, get in their heads and undermine their game plan. Racing up the pitch and leaving too few back to defend will produce the same result as the first leg.

  37. wally says:

    NG,
    Good question. I hadn’t really thot much about that. No injuries would be the biggest. Play respectably.
    If we got a magical result that pushed us through that would super charge us but i have no expectations on that front. I don’t think a loss would damage us. I think we may win the game and lose the war tonite.
    I’d like to see rosicky in the side. He gets CL games better than anyone else. In fact i’d like to see him a bit more than we have this year. He helped kick start this run.

  38. Rasp says:

    Nice fantasy GoonerB …. obviously I’d prefer us to be 2 up at half time … 3 up … 4 up …… I’m just trying to envisage the likely pattern of the game. If we’re 2 nil up at half time our mindset would be different to 1 up and we may be more likely to concede as the victory would appear to be in our grasp.

    In general, I quite like the idea of starting every game as if you were 1 nil down. We know that 4 nil at half time doesn’t guarantee victory.

    We have to win more of the 50/50 battles and most importantly, control the midfield. Ollie is unlikely to have as bad a night as he did in the first encounter, he’ll have a point to prove.

  39. Rasp says:

    If there are two things we need tonight I would say patience and to be clinical in front of goal.

  40. arnie says:

    BTW, very nice motning batner. 🙂 Eddie -cam and pumpkin-fetish and all. 😛

  41. GoonerB says:

    I think the best would be to go 2-0 up just after half time Rasp. Lots of the game left but it leaves their managers half time team talk in tatters.

  42. GoonerB says:

    It is interesting to think on the likely pattern of the game Rasp. I don’t think we can be gung-ho or too conservative. I think it needs to a disciplined performance but one where we turn up the tempo at sudden instances to try and catch them out. If we score 2 too early as you say we may start to alter how we play believing victory is within our grasp.

    Conversely if we are still at 1-0 later on then we may start to over commit players forward in desperation and get caught. I think evenly spaced goals with lots of keeping it tighter in between the goals and sudden periods of turning the screw on them. It will be in these periods when we create chances that we will win or lose the tie depending on whether we capitalise or squander.

  43. Rasp says:

    Yes GB, that may be the perfect scenario. But say it was 1 nil, their manager may not feel that the game was slipping away and tell them to carry on as before. You’re right, if we build a 2 goal margin with 30 minutes or more to go, they will begin to wobble.

  44. Rasp says:

    Yes I agree GB, discipline is paramount, we will always have a couple of gears we can up it by if the situation requires, but the down side will be that it makes us more vulnerable to the counter.

  45. Rasp says:

    Here you go then …. my (and GoonerB’s?) recipe for success…..

    PATIENT …. DISCIPLINED …. HIGH ENERGY …. CLINICAL 🙂

  46. arnie says:

    and LUCKY? 😛

  47. Rasp says:

    You make your own luck arnie 😆

  48. arnie says:

    🙂

  49. RockyLives says:

    Splendid BR

    I’m really looking forward to the game – it’s a real “nothing to lose’ fixture and I suspect the players are looking forward to it as well.

    It even doesn’t matter if we concede a goal – we need to score three whether or not they score one. If they do, we finish them off in extra time.

    That said, the league is very important so I would rest some key players.

    My team for tonight:

    Ospina

    Coq

    Ozil

    Alexis – Giroud

    That should do it.

  50. mickydidit89 says:

    H ah ha Rocky

    Love it. “Yip, five of us Ref. Now blow the fucking whistle and let’s get on with it shall we”

  51. GunnerN5 says:

    Raddy yet another superb pre-match.

    We have overcome far worse situations than tonight’s game in our history.

    Remember Friday May 26th 1989?

    The headline the next day was –

    Thomas strike seals title at Anfield

    “Thomas, charging through the midfield… it’s up for grabs now… Thomas, right at the end!”

    It can and will happen today – we will pull another rabbit out of the hat.

    I agree completely with Norfolk’s team selection.

  52. RockyLives says:

    It’s like the Bergkamp joke, Micky:

    Arsenal have a tough away game in Barcelona.

    A dedicated fan (let’s pluck a name at random for him – say, “Chas”) – has gone to Spain but couldn’t get a ticket.

    As the match kicks off he is reduced to standing outside the ground – but at a corner of the stadium where he can see the backs of the heads of some of the home fans in the upper tier.

    The whistle blows. Ten minutes later there’s a huge shout from the crowd.

    Chas shouts up to the Spaniards in the stands: “What’s happened?”

    One of the Barca fans – who happens to speak English – turns round and looks down. He shouts back: “There has been a huge brawl. Five of your filthy players have been sent off.”

    Chas looks crestfallen.

    Another 10 minutes go by and there’s another huge shout from the crowd.

    Chas shouts up: “What’s happened now?”

    The Spaniard calls back down: “Your team are a disgrace. There has been another huge fight and five more of your men have been sent off. Only Dennis Bergkamp is still on the pitch against all 11 of our Barca players.”

    Chas looks even more crestfallen.

    Ten minutes pass, then there’s another huge shout.

    Chas yells up: “What’s happened? Has Dennis scored?”

  53. mickydidit89 says:

    ha ha ha ha ha

  54. Talking of refs, tonight’s is the man who awarded Robben a penalty when he tripped over an extra long blade of grass. Luckily Fabianski saved the penalty and we left Munich with a 1 – 1 draw, but still exited the competition.

    That was in 2014, the man in question Norwegian Svein Oddvar Moen.

  55. chas mobile says:

    Has Bergkamp scored?
    Feckin love it. 😆

  56. RockyLives says:

    Rumour going around that the game might be cancelled because of heavy rain?

  57. Right, I’m off. A few husbandly duties to perform in order to gain priority possession of the TV remote.

    I’ll be back to celebrate our progress to the quarter finals.

    C’mon the Glorious Gunners!!!

  58. Rocky the rumour monger! the forecast for this evening is cloudy with 0% chance of rain between 1900 and midnight.

  59. RockyLives says:

    Thanks NG

    I get it from my son, who no doubt got it from some dodgy social media bolleaux.

  60. bamboozle says:

    Blind leading the blind and i’m talking about Wenger and the fans

  61. GunnerN5 says:

    The return of the Lamb full of Booze………….

  62. Rasp says:

    Great comments so far today, I think we all share that Bergkamp joke’s illogical belief that we can do it tonight….. and why not?

    Whilst GoonerB and I are dissecting the minutiae of our options for a tactical approach, Rocky and Micky have adopted the ‘f**k it, let’s have some fun’ stance 😆

  63. Rasp says:

    Great to have your support at this testing time Bamby 🙂

  64. Rasp says:

    I wouldn’t be happy if the game was called off – methinks the wet conditions would favour us and thy now it 😕

  65. Big Raddy says:

    Rocky. Top team and , much better than mine but I would throw in a Diaby for a bit of security

    Rasp. “Start cautiously and try to get control of the game ….. don’t concede ….. slowly become more adventurous and try to get 1 up by half time”

    Get a grip man. We didn’t beat the French at Crecy and Agincourt by starting cautiously. Coincidently it will be a heavy pitch tonight which will stop the heavily armoured Monaco team in their tracks

    Go for the jugular from the first whistle

  66. RockyLives says:

    Always nice to hear from visiting optometrists on here.

    Thankyou Bam.

  67. RockyLives says:

    “I would throw in a Diaby for a bit of security” – big ROLF

  68. Rasp says:

    😆 Raddy, a classic case of second man syndrome, we’d all urge the man in charge to be gung ho …. but if it was us making the big decisions, I bet most would adopt something closer to my suggested approach 🙂

  69. RockyLives says:

    Well said BR

    Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more;
    Or fill the net up with our Arsenal goals.
    In crown green bowls there’s nothing so becomes a man
    As modest stillness and humility;
    But when the blast of footy blows in our ears,
    Then imitate the action of the tiger!

    COYRRG

  70. RA says:

    Rasp @ 1:42

    Don’t take any notice of that GB.

    He is a Didit disciple on the one hand – calling for 10 forwards and all out attack – then he is agreeing with you and the
    PATIENT …. DISCIPLINED …. HIGH ENERGY …. CLINICAL bollix.

    He clearly hunts with the hounds and runs with the camels!

  71. arnie says:

    ha ha ha ha. lovely comments everyone. nicely warming up to the game. COYRRG. 🙂

  72. Rasp says:

    Maybe we should have fed Monaco some ‘special lasagne’ before the game?

  73. arnie says:

    Rasp. we have already done that. reports say Kondogbia has locked himself up in the gents. 😛

  74. arnie says:

    maybe feed the ref as well?

  75. Rasp says:

    I think we should get Lauren back to coach our players on how to develop that ‘I’m going to rip your head off and s**t down your neck’ scowl for when we shake hands before the game.

  76. RC78 says:

    Ospina – Chambs, BFG, Kos, Monreal – Ramsey, Coquelin – BELLERIN, Ozil, Sanchez – Wellbeck

    I am playing Wellbeck ahead of Giroud and am playing Bellerin at RW because he is good at crossing and can overtake and limit their LB’s influence. The only person I am having a doubt on is…Sanchez (:-(). Why? I think we could play Cazorla or Wallcott instead and bring him in the last half hour to cause Havoc in a tired defense…He is feeling the pain of the EPL on his body now and he needs to be used cautiously – we need him to finish Top 4. The fight with Man City, Man Utd and Liverpool will be fierce

  77. Big Raddy says:

    Rocky. Love a bit a quasi-Bard. Thank you.

    Rasp. Feint heart never won fair maiden.

    RA. You mention camels often. Is there a reason for this?

  78. RockyLives says:

    Watch it BR or he’ll get the hump.

  79. Rasp says:

    If I may explain, GoonerB let slip that he is a camel wormer by profession and this has held some fascination for RA ever since.

  80. GoonerB says:

    All to do with me being a retired camel wormer raddy. I will let RA explain more as i am on my phone at a riding stables.

    Horses……. just not quite the same as camels.

  81. Rasp says:

    Is it just me or does anyone else think that Ant looks a bit like Quentin Crisp in that pic @ 10:46 😕

  82. GoonerB says:

    Thinking of coming out of retirement. How different can it be to worm a horse?

    I think i will give that angry big black bastard a go. I’ll let you know how i got on shortly

  83. GunnerN5 says:

    Team news: Gabriel and Rosicky updates

    Arsène Wenger reported the following team news ahead of the Champions League game against Monaco:

    on the team news…
    Gabriel travelled and is available. Chamberlain did not travel, Rosicky did not travel, he comes back from sickness.

    Gabriel replaces Apkom in the squad which was involved on Saturday against West Ham.

  84. GunnerN5 says:

    Wenger: ‘No matter how big the percentage is, we are going to give absolutely everything to make the stats lie’

  85. RA says:

    Randy,

    If you are trying to inveigle me into making some unfortunate comment likening Per to a camel – then you have failed!

    I think? 🙂

    Apparently you do not have time to keep up – with all your tour guide activities and singing – but GoonerB threw into the conversation some time ago that he was a camel wormer, (?) but then went coy as to what his actual job (or past-time) was and, unlike Rasp, I had never heard of such a thing and wanted to know if it was Vet related, or was a Zoo-keeper responsibility.

    Apparently it’s neither. I tend not to let go when I am puzzled by something, and at last GB has now said he is retired and about to stuff a horse. (getting there – see?) 🙂

    Do you worm camels during tours of the city? Do you know who does?

  86. RockyLives says:

    Redders

    Did you know (I suspect you do as you know many things) that camels are so important in Arabian culture that there are more than 160 words for “camel” in Arabic.

    One such word being “per”

  87. stevepalmer1 says:

    Evening all, Nice one Raddy.
    I have to say that reading through, i was nodding along until i came to your line up. Now i know that Arsene has your ear, and usually you are pretty close to the right team, but unless Arsene has been on the Napoleon i think that line up is way off the mark. I can’t pick a team for the life of me so maybe i should just wait for the line up.

    I did agree with your bit about 5 goals is as easy as 3, if we play as we can i can see a hiding in one of our games this season, i just hope its this one tonight

  88. RA says:

    Hi Rocky, 🙂

    No. I did not know that.

    Per is a nice name – then there is Jim, Alice, and …….. well there is probably one name for each camel – that seems fair.

  89. RockyLives says:

    Alice. Nice name for a camel. Better than Per.

  90. stevepalmer1 says:

    There’s always Eddie, she’ll have the hump if we don’t get through.

  91. Big Raddy says:

    Steve. The line up was a joke but I would love to see us try it.

    RA. Now I understand. AA has multifarious talents!

  92. fatgingergooner says:

    set pieces are going to be key to us having any chance of going through. No doubt they will pack the edge of the box and put men behind the ball, so breaking through them in open play will be difficult. However, I do think we will get plenty of corners and free kicks, so delivery will be very important.

    Get an early goal and they will panic. I don’t think a clean sheet is that important as 3-1 will be extra time.

    I don’t think we will go through and for once I will be able to enjoy the game without worrying too much about the score. That might change if we go 2-0 up though!!!

  93. mickydidit89 says:

    Qualify tonight and lose at Newcastle or the reverse. What would you prefer if you had to choose?

    Qualify tonight for me and go away to somewhere nice in the next round 🙂

  94. Big Raddy says:

    Micky. From a personal point of view a win tonight. From an AFC POV 3 points at Newcastle

    Best would be both

  95. Big Raddy says:

    FGG. I agree set pieces will be important. I hope for goals from OG and Kos

  96. arnie says:

    is the team official? no Rambo? hmmmm. still I like the attack minded team.

  97. arnie says:

    ha ha ha ha ha ha ha

  98. mickydidit89 says:

    What team Arnie

    Raddy
    Disagree. Think qualifying tonight is way bigger for AFC than beating Toon. We can come fourth later

  99. GunnerN5 says:

    Here’s the team news from Arsenal.com

    Arsenal subs: Szczesny, Gibbs, Gabriel, Chambers, Ramsey, Flamini, Walcott

    Arsenal: Ospina, Bellerin, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Monreal, Coquelin, Cazorla, Welbeck, Ozil, Alexis, Giroud

  100. mickydidit89 says:

    No Rambo. Booo

  101. GunnerN5 says:

    If we are going to win AW’s picked the right team to do it.
    At last AW has a wealth of attacking options, what other team could even consider leaving Walcott and Ramsey on the bench.

  102. GunnerN5 says:

    Okay Micky you have been given a cyber red card for the “B” word!!

  103. Rasp says:

    No Rambo, big mistake unless he’s exhausted or injured 😦

  104. mickydidit89 says:

    Hi GN5

    I’d say Rambo in the side in place of Danny would edge it in terms of attacking, but maybe Arsene has “wired” their dressing room and knows how the frogs are going to play it 🙂

  105. GunnerN5 says:

    Darn, my son is getting home late, so I will have to watch a recording a little later on this evening.

  106. GoonerB says:

    RA your 5.07 seems to be inferring that I may not actually be a camel wormer. There is no greater insult to a camel wormer than to deny their existence. It normally results in a worm feud and they can get pretty serious. As I like you redders I will let you off.

  107. GunnerN5 says:

    Micky,

    I agree with you as I would also have preferred to see him start.

    However “Arsene Knows”

  108. GunnerN5 says:

    Hat trick for Danny boy………..

  109. GunnerN5 says:

    Well now that I’m watching the game later on I’ve got time to prepare a loin pork roast for dinner (lots of crackling) – with roast onions and potatoes along with home made apple sauce – courtesy of Mrs, GN5.

  110. RockyLives says:

    I was expecting Rambo to start but that’s still a pretty darn good attacking line-up!

  111. Berbatov wants us no good…

  112. Didn’t Ramsey just do his first start? I would have been surprised if he would have gotten the next one so soon…

  113. arnie says:

    COYG. I am a bit surprised with no Rambo as well. that is a big statement of faith on Welbz, hopefully he will justify it.

    COYG. 🙂

  114. RA says:

    Thank goodness for your goodness, GB, and do apologise on my behalf to all those irate itchy worms. 🙂

  115. mickydidit89 says:

    I like Danny a lot, just not so much wide. If Monaco come at us, it may work, but if they do “le parking” then with Rambo, Santi could budge up and do some defence unlocking.

    Who knows. The Arsenal are playing, and we love that.

  116. RA says:

    Enjoy your meal, GN5, it sounds delicious – and I am sure it will taste the same!! 🙂

  117. mickydidit89 says:

    Can’t imagine Ant will be able to see much, if anything, of the game what with becoming Irish for the day 🙂

  118. fatgingergooner says:

    So Bellerin, Welbeck and Cazorla all start after being rested at the weekend. Maybe Wenger is thinking their left hand side could be weak defensively as Welbs and Bellerin will be on that side.

    Walcott to come on later in the game on that side could be important.

  119. Rasp says:

    Ok boys, ignore Raddy 🙂 play with your heads and believe!!!!

  120. Big Raddy says:

    Not going the way I had hoped.

    Werger clearly read Rasp’s comments

  121. Rasp says:

    Same mistake as the first leg so far – not using the full width of the pitch, the wide players keep cutting inside 😦

  122. Rasp says:

    At last Bellerin gets behind their fullback and immediately we have a chance

  123. Rasp says:

    We’d be 2 down already if we played your way Raddy 🙂 Monaco are a very good disciplined side

  124. mickydidit89 says:

    Rubbish Rasp
    It’d be 4-2 🙂

  125. Rasp says:

    🙂 micky. All our success is coming from wide positions, our FBs need the confidence to overlap when the opportunity arises

  126. Gööner In Exile says:

    Get in Ollie!!!

  127. RA says:

    Booo to Rasp — no discipline no nothing and a great goal. 🙂

  128. Rasp says:

    Great finish Giroooouuuuudddd

  129. arnie says:

    well done Giro, on with the show!

  130. fatgingergooner says:

    Yes!

    Just going to say we keep dribbling with heavy touches. Not sure if it’s the pitch or we are just too excited.

  131. Rasp says:

    Now calm down Arsenal, we’ve scored but we must not lose our heads

  132. Rasp says:

    Alexis keeps turning into the middle and 3 defenders instead of spraying the ball wide

  133. fatgingergooner says:

    They look a bit panicked already so another goal in the next 20 minutes and we have a real chance.

  134. fatgingergooner says:

    How is that a dive!?

    Might not be a pen, but doesn’t mean it’s s dive. Why do refs have to blow every single time someone goes to ground?

  135. Rasp says:

    Never a yellow card 😦

  136. Rasp says:

    Ok so Monaco appear to be the Chelsea of the French league – cheats

  137. fatgingergooner says:

    Let them play the game ref!

  138. Rasp says:

    That’s a very good first half for Arsenal. Swapping shirts ffs?

  139. Rasp says:

    But for 2 lucky deflections we could be 3 nil up already

  140. fatgingergooner says:

    Play like that second half and we have a real chance.

    Here we go, half time talking about shirt swapping! Who gives a f**k!?

  141. So close 2-0! Dammit. Welbeck looks like he is wearing clogs though.

  142. mickydidit89 says:

    Very good so far

  143. Giroud a giant again I must say. So strong in every duel.

  144. fatgingergooner says:

    Rasp,

    That comment was aimed at the tv, not you!

    Shirt swapping at half time is up there with Twitter, coloured boots and sleeve tattoos. It’s b***cks, but it’s the modern game.

  145. Big Raddy says:

    what a marvellous final 20 minutes. Best I have seen us all season. Every man jack on his game and working for each other.

    Come on you Gunners

  146. Gööner In Exile says:

    Rasp that comment doesn’t pass the PMT 😀

    Happy with the half, and performance, don’t think Santi and Ozil will be allowed as much room, replacing a tiring Welly with Theo will strike fear into Monacos legs come the last half hour.

    Need to retain focus.

    Loving the work being put in by Ollie to win ball back high, being ably supported by Alexis and Welly and even Mesut, allowing Santi and Coq to pick up loose balls. All good.

  147. Big Raddy says:

    Manu looks good

  148. mickydidit89 says:

    I suppose the longer this stays 1-0, the deeper Monaco will sit and there’ll be less space. Then maybe Rambo on for Danny, Santi no10 and Mesut wide

    Or something 🙂

  149. Rasp says:

    No problem fgg. It shows how Ozil doesn’t understand the supporters, swap the shirt in the tunnel if you have to. We want him just to be focused on getting the 3 goals

  150. Rasp says:

    Which comment GiE?

  151. arnie says:

    sounds like a plan, Micky. 🙂 my fingers have started bleeding, no nails left. COYG. 🙂

  152. arnie says:

    each and every one of them, Rasp. 😆

  153. Gööner In Exile says:

    FGG I wondered about blowing the whistle to signal a dive and issue a yellow in the United game, on both occasions we had the ball so there was no need to whistle and could have come back to book later. Seems like it’s a new directive.

    As for swapping shirts didn’t see it, and don’t know who but say Player A says to Player B look I’m doing a charity auction for a friend who has a sick kid, I’m not sure I’ll ne on at 90 minutes so can I have your first half shirt?

  154. arnie says:

    another goal in the next 10 mins, and game on!

  155. Gööner In Exile says:

    Haha Rasp it seems to have been toned down by the great mod in the sky 😀

  156. Rasp says:

    😆 arnie. So far the game has gone exactly to the script I put in my comment earlier in the day. We now need to get the 2nd before the 70th minute 😆

  157. stevepalmer1 says:

    Ozil off and Ramsey on whats the betting

  158. RA says:

    All to play for — have to watch we do not get carried away and let them in for a goal, or we would be back to needing 3 goals to win.

  159. arnie says:

    Rasp. I reserve my opinion. the second half of the script matters more. 🙂

  160. Gööner In Exile says:

    I’m happy to take 2nd and 3rdgoals in last ten minutes, the longer the game goes with Monaco sitting back the harder it will be for them to attempt to change the rhythm if we get a second, so I’ll happily take that around 75/80 and then a third around 85 then keep playing forward. But at least by then we will have secured extra time, if we get pegged to 2-1 we will be in win/lose Monte Carlo or bust.

    Bet Mowbray can’t wait to wheel that line out.

  161. Gööner In Exile says:

    Sorry where was the foul there?

  162. Big Raddy says:

    Not enjoying this referee

  163. arnie says:

    yes, the ref is a numpty, but we will still make it. COYG.

  164. Gööner In Exile says:

    Ozil is on it tonight!

  165. Rasp says:

    Blatant time wasting, Monaco are masters of the dark arts

  166. fatgingergooner says:

    Half time came at the wrong time. Started ok though second half.

  167. Gööner In Exile says:

    Too early to score.

  168. fatgingergooner says:

    GiE,

    According to itv Özil is having a shocker!

  169. fatgingergooner says:

    Need Cazorla on the ball more.

  170. Rasp says:

    This time wasting for our free kicks is ridiculous

  171. Gööner In Exile says:

    Settle down lads

  172. Rasp says:

    It’s not happening for Sanchez so far – so he’ll probably score now 🙂

  173. Rasp says:

    Actually I think he should be subbed before he gets sent off

  174. Gööner In Exile says:

    Rambo for who? welly?

  175. Rasp says:

    We’re getting too excited. Rambo to come on ….. For?

  176. Gööner In Exile says:

    Hmmm fair enough I guess playing for the win but I think we had time.

  177. fatgingergooner says:

    Change makes sense. Conceding 1 is nothing.

  178. Gööner In Exile says:

    Does at least feel like that was planned and everyone has adopted new roles.

  179. fatgingergooner says:

    Get Theo on shortly. At least he will shoot in and around the box.

  180. Gööner In Exile says:

    Starting to look like we’ve shot our bolt.

  181. Rasp says:

    This ref is a homer

  182. Gööner In Exile says:

    Oh ref you’re starting to have a laugh!!

  183. arnie says:

    getting dispossessed too easily.

  184. Gööner In Exile says:

    Come Ooooon nnnnnnnn perfect timing!!!

  185. Rasp says:

    Rambo – I told you 🙂

  186. fatgingergooner says:

    It’s the hope that kills you!

    What a ball from Özil.

  187. Rasp says:

    We’ve still gotta play with our heads

  188. Gööner In Exile says:

    Kozzer immense tonight

  189. Rasp says:

    Theo making great runs

  190. Gööner In Exile says:

    One more change? Who?

  191. Gööner In Exile says:

    Gibbo? Interesting suppose gives some extra width, Nacho probably killed himself in Turin for the goal

  192. fatgingergooner says:

    Body check, rugby tackle and a hack in the last minute and still no booking!

  193. Gööner In Exile says:

    Got to get it wide on the floor

  194. Rasp says:

    If only we hadn’t conceded that stupid third at the Emirates. 😦

  195. Gööner In Exile says:

    Bollocks!!!

  196. Rasp says:

    The boys did us proud this evening

  197. arnie says:

    well well well. well played, but a bridge too far. lack of width I think. 😦

  198. Big Raddy says:

    We were terrific tonight. Gutted for the boys.

  199. fatgingergooner says:

    Outstanding performance.

    could easily have been 3 nil.

    Gutted that all that effort gets us nothing, but we left ourselves too much to do from that shocking first leg.

  200. Big Raddy says:

    I like the look of their DM Kondogbia.and the CB Wallace was excellent – only 20 and Brazilan. He has a big future

  201. Gööner In Exile says:

    Indeed about that third goal. Give Monaco credit they packed their box well at the end but I feel we wasted two minutes sending high crosses to Ollie in the dying minutes of the 90 before the extra time was shown.

    Goes to show yet again when we apply ourselves and adopt a game plan we can do it.

    West Ham were the perfect warm up, just a shame we didn’t have a game changer like Alexis on the bench with fresh legs, Theo was up against a lamppost at full back so crosses were hopeful at best and with them sitting so deep hewas no threat in behind, and let’s be honest he can’t receive the ball or pass the ball like the rest of the attacking players.

    It just wasn’t the game for him, i’d have rather had TR7 or Ox coming on at that stage.

  202. fatgingergooner says:

    How many times are we going to leave ourselves too much to do in the 2nd leg of a CL tie before we learn our lessons? How can Merts say the team weren’t mentally able to cope in the first leg?

    Ridiculous.

    Anyway, they made up for it a bit tonight, but still doesn’t excuse the same mistakes being made year in year out.

  203. RockyLives says:

    Didn’t get the rub of the green on the night but you can’t fault the lads or the manage.

  204. mickydidit89 says:

    That was a great game from us.

    Cheesed off we’re not in the draw for the next round, but as we know, the damage was done at home.

    Great effort from the whole side tonight, and definitely unlucky on the night.

  205. RockyLives says:

    It also keeps up our winning momentum.

  206. mickydidit89 says:

    How do we, the AA faithful, cope with such sadness and loss?

    Four days of wall to wall smut, I say.

    ’till dawn shipmates

  207. fatgingergooner says:

    GiE,

    Walcott was anonymous when he came on. He doesn’t run at defenders or move them out of position. He just dumps the ball off to the nearest person and makes a forward run. As you say, that’s no good when the opposition are packed in the penalty area.

    He still offers a lot, but maybe he needs a full pre season to get back his confidence.

    I’m a little suprised Wenger is already talking about a new contract because the team seems to have moved on without him whilst he’s been injured. I wouldn’t be shocked if he refuses a contract and leaves in the near future.

  208. fatgingergooner says:

    I would rather we drew 0-0 in all honesty!

    Its definitely the hope that kills you. I was ready to accept defeat pre match, now I’m gutted and feel like we could’ve done it.

    How many times have we gone out on away goals in recent seasons? Get rid of it I say!!! 🙂

  209. Rasp says:

    My only criticism is that on numerous occasions our midfielders had the opportunity to play the early ball out wide to a player in acres of space and yet turned inside and into a cluster of defenders. But all in all I’m a proud Gooner after that performance

  210. RockyLives says:

    Maybe it’s time to stop flailing around for targets to criticize.

    We all know we made a porker’s ear of the first leg. All that the lads could do tonight was turn up and give it a real go – which is exactly what they did.

    I’m proud of all 14 of the players who featured tonight.

  211. fatgingergooner says:

    Such a shame we couldn’t get that 2nd goal 10 minutes earlier.

    I thought Ramsey was excellent when he came on and Özil was brilliant second half. Maybe his shirt was too tight in the first half! 😉

  212. Big Raddy says:

    Me too. A proud Gunner here in CPH.

    Everyone gave everything they had. Kos my MOTM but not far behind was Bellerin. What a player he is going to be , still only 19 (he is 20 on Friday) and looks like an experienced International player already

  213. fatgingergooner says:

    The gameplan and execution were pretty much spot on for me. Just needed to be a little more clinical or have a bit more luck. The Welbeck shot that hit the defender, Özil’s half volley that flashed wide, Özils free kick and Sanchez’s back post header were all good chances that you would expect at least 1 to go in, but it wasn’t to be.

    I imagine we will see a few changes for Newcastle as the lads gave a whole lot tonight. Top 4 and an FA Cup final could still be a decent season.

  214. Gööner In Exile says:

    Hey Rocky not looking for scapegoats just an opinion on whether we would have been better served by more of a ball player.

    However I guess if we’d managed to get the second earlier we could have expected Monaco to come on to us in search of a tying goal and that would have allowed us to bring out the best in Theo.

    For me best players on the pitch tonight were Ozil, Santi, Coq and Kozzer. We lost some stability when Coq went off but Kozzer took it upon himself to leave the back line to offer a similar threat.

    I also thought we pressed better than I’ve seen us do for a long time, we were very unlucky with some of the refs calls for soft free kicks and as Rasp and FGG said it was a surprise not see more cards appearing for the blocks and trips with only the intention of halting our progress when we were attacking.

  215. Gööner In Exile says:

    Top4? …..pfft…..We can concentrate on winning the league now FGG 😀

  216. fatgingergooner says:

    GiE,

    Agree about our midfield 3 and Kozzer. I would also add Bellerin to the list of better players.

    I’m a little suprised Gibbs didn’t start because he’s more attacking than Monreal. I wonder if Wenger has started to see Nacho as 1st choice?

    We did well in the pressing but they didn’t offer much going forward and made it easy for us to keep the ball.

    Apparently we had 70% possession.

  217. Dreadful, emptiness. And it happens again…

    Kos was brilliant. I love it when he is this eager and on his toes. Weaselish aggressiveness, very alert. Quite often it happens in this kind of game – the very important ones.

    On to the league!

  218. wally says:

    No complaints, NONE! That was a heroic effort that wasn’t rewarded.
    We showed a patience and ‘nous’ that has been a loooong time coming. Showed great maturity.
    I thought we played really really well. Never panicked. This team keep playing like that and this time next year we’ll be walking it home, in any competition we choose!

    I’ve got a fever and the only cure is

  219. stevepalmer1 says:

    Got to go to work, but one in Nuts should we need one. Gutted

  220. mickydidit89 says:

    Banner for Steve

  221. mickydidit89 says:

    The mood will be low, so surely it’s acceptable to elevate the smut to the next level

  222. mickydidit89 says:

    If things weren’t bad enough, I’m just praying that knob Bono isn’t a Gunner, and simply a hypocritical tax exiled socialist wearing dark glasses at night.

  223. RA says:

    Oh woe – woe is me – if only we had not listened to Rasp, we would now be in round 15 or whatever.

    Woe – woe – woe is I.

    What did Rasp say? I don’t have a clue – but you have to blame someone – and Rasp is always the go-to guy!

    Woe is Wasp – I mean Rasp. 🙂

    (I enjoyed the game – we gave it a good go – that’s football.) “D

  224. Big Raddy says:

    Morning All,

    Bono wears those glasses because he has chronic glaucoma.

    And ….. any Gunner is a good Gunner. Even Buddhist Steve and Bamboozle.

    Now, where is chas?

  225. Rasp says:

    You are incorrect Redders, my strategy almost won us the game, you should be complementing me. I’m not that disappointed because we played really well yesterday 🙂

  226. Rasp says:

    I don’t think we should be looking for scapegoats after last night, but if anyone cost us the tie over two legs it was Mertesacker who gifted them their second goal and then didn’t act like the senior player and calm the players down after we scored at home. He was excellent last night though

  227. RA says:

    I blame Rasp – and Theo.

    Why Theo? — Well it was shocking that in the first game he lay on the goal line and invited Welly to hit his ass – and Welly obliged. 🙂

    [My name is Raddy] 🙂

  228. Big Raddy says:

    RA. I agree. Had we gone all out from the start we would have won the game by half time. Instead we sat back and wasted 20 m25 minutes then attacked with verve.

    Rasp led us to defeat.

  229. Rasp says:

    And that is why you are not a football manager Raddy 🙂

  230. Rasp says:

    ….. oh, and Bono is a massive knob …. 😕

  231. fatgingergooner says:

    I’m not down about the result or the way we played, or the fact we are out. Just a little annoyed that we aren’t smart enough to take a 1-0 or 1-1 from the first leg and move on. That worries me for future games as we’ve seen these sort of game management errors a few times.

    Also annoys me when my Leeds fan mate texts me telling me Özil was rubbish because he wouldn’t put the ball in the box. I’m sick of explaining that crunching tackles and 50 yard passes don’t make a good footballer. It’s no wonder we celebrate players like Paul Ince and David Batty and it’s no wonder people like Tony Pulis get management jobs.

    Not sure we will ever see England win another tournament whilst we keep on with the ‘blood and guts’ football. The game has moved on.

  232. Big Raddy says:

    And why you aren’t either Rasp 🙂

  233. Big Raddy says:

    FGG. Leeds haven’t had a player like Ozil since Johnny Giles. No wonder your friend doesn’t recognise quality.

  234. Rasp says:

    Maybe so, but just imagine how we’d have been slaughtered by the ‘fans’ and the Press if we’d have conceded silly goals and lost last night – let alone the effect on the morale of the players with the all important run-in to the end of the season.. But for a couple of lucky blocks by Monaco defenders we would have gone through last night. I think we pretty much got everything right and the real manager deserves credit as much as the players.

  235. Big Raddy says:

    Belt and braces Rasp

    But I am proud of the boys who got so close. Let’s hope they are not too knackered for the trip up to St James Pk

  236. fatgingergooner says:

    Id like to watch a video of just Özil last night because there are reports online of him being terrible, but I thought he was excellent!

    He really does divide opinion.

    Anyone else have any thoughts on his performance?

  237. Rasp says:

    Morning FGG, I thought Ozil had one of his best games in an Arsenal shirt last night, those supporters who are criticising him don’t deserve him because they are incapable of appreciating his talent. I shouldn’t get upset about it, the people who matter at Arsenal know how good he is and that’s all that is important.

    Someone said the other day that he is the best assister’s assister – I know what they mean 😆

  238. fatgingergooner says:

    Found one

    Nearly every pass goes forward. That’s what I like about him.

  239. Morning all The granddaughter has mucked up something on my laptop ……………….. just sorting Steve’s post

  240. …………..We have a New Post ………………….

  241. RC78 says:

    It was a decent display against a team that just sat back and did not even try to create chances, even on the counter-attack…

    Our best players: Cazorla, Giroud,
    Our worse players: Bellerin, Monreal, Walcott, Sanchez
    Players on par: Wellbeck, Ozil, Ramsey, Coquelin, Kos, BFG, Ospina

    I thought that we missed some movement when in possession of the ball. Bellerin and Monreal did not cause any trouble with overlaps and their crossing was appalling…

    Sanchez had a horrible first half and was trying too hard in the second half – he looks jaded and needs a rest.

    Wellbeck played well when he was moved to right wing and when he played behind Giroud but his first touch is heavy…He really needs to sort this out and he will become a cracking forward.

    Wallcott’s introduction was really anonymous…We miss OX and Gnabry badly…

    Overall – a decent display but nothing to shout about…We did create 5 clear cut-chances and should have really won by 3 goals but we either messed up (last chance) or we messed up (Wellbeck’s shot on the defender)…

    CCL – We thoroughly deserve to be out of the Chamions League as we defended like amteurs at home. We are not learning from past mistakes and to be honest, we should be through against a good solid but rather limited offensively Monaco team…Now let’s win this damn FA Cup and finish in the top 3…

    PS CCL – We need to look at a new defensive coach because we keep on making similar mistakes for the last 5 years and we need also to invest in another HM/DM and maybe look at a winger as well…

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