Steve’s Monday morning ketchup!

Morning all,

I did a work party for my fishing club Sunday morning, so missed our chats on this weekends football, we cut down tree’s and tidied the banks up and I ache like a schoolgirl who played her first Hockey game, shows you i am getting old. Well what about our game with Newcastle then. I would say we started off cautiously but got into our game and I felt we took the first half to them.

Our first goal came a little unexpected I thought, a cross and a bit of a knee jerk by Oli who directed the ball past the Newcastle goalkeeper.  That goal came when we needed it, I felt the lads had been passing the ball around nicely and deserved the goal. Newcastle of course were gutted but also had a couple of chances, but we just kept plugging away until our next next goal came about. Another cross and Oli boy got his nut on it, and steered it into the far corner, I have to say we were looking good.

The Arsenal team had endured a tough week. Their trip to Monaco had started to take its toll. Although a good win out there 2-0 still wasn’t enough to go through and so it had felt like a loss.  Our game with Newcastle probably came at the right time, not too long to wait and an away fixture as well. Newcastle have not been playing that well and had a few missing, and we had managed to get a two goal lead by half time.

The second half started in lively fashion –  I can only assume that the Newcastle Manager had thrown a tantrum at his players in the dressing room, where our Arsene would only have simply said keep it going lads. The Newcastle players came out like a different side. Our players were being closed down as Newcastle stepped up the pace. As we have seen before, we do have a tendency to give the ball away when pressed.

Newcastle’s new momentum paid off when a nice move was rewarded by a  goal early in the second half.  The Arsenal players looked surprised, but I have to say they also looked a little jaded as well. Newcastle kept the pressure on encouraged by the home supporters as they searched for an equaliser, but our team kept it tight and kept them out.

By the end that we looked a little shell shocked, but we weathered the storm and came away with all three points – who can ask for more. I have to say that the hard week did reflect our play in the second half, and I worry that fast shutting down does seem to unhinge us; strange as when we had the majority possession in the past, we still managed to keep control, we now when pressed look all at sea. But a win and a crucial 3 points were achieved and that carries us past the potentially tricky hurdle of Newcastle, safe with another victory and still in the chase for the top two.

The other results  that affected was City against West Brom. City also had a tough week, getting hammered by Barcelona, and also being put out of Champions league. With W. Brom down to 10 men early on, as their task was considerably easier as they managed a 3 nill win, so nothing gained there.

Hull 2 Chelsea 3: Chelsea took a quick 2 goal lead, it may have looked like it was going to be an easy match for them, but Hull reacted strongly and fired two goals to level the score, now it was Chelsea who looked stunned . Maureen looked like a man who had just found out his Mrs had left him, but although Hull pressed them Chelsea got the decider to take the points no change there.

Liverpool 1 Man Utd 2.  This was the game that could make a difference to those chasing us. Mata popped up with a  splendid goal that rocked Liverpool, at Half time changes was made and it looked as if Brenda had told Gerrard to put it up them a bit. this was to be Liverpool’s undoing. Gerrard took it a step too far as he put in a fierce challenge on Herrera and took exception to the manu player’s follow through and lost his composure only to stamp on the player right in front of the referee. Gerard rightly received his marching orders and it was only a matter of time until United scored their second. Liverpool did fight back but that just resulted in what I thought was a tight penalty decision close to the end. Rooney stepped up but the Liverpool keeper saved. The game finished 1:2 and Liverpool drop back in their bid for top 4 whilst united’s push for top 3 / 4 is aided by the 3 points.

Just a little change there.

Chelsea have the edge at this stage, City next with us just a point behind them, and United a point behind us – but still anything is possible. So now for a little rest which i feel has come at a right time for all, rest and recuperate, and come back a lot sharper and start all over again for the final push.

Steve Palmer

79 Responses to Steve’s Monday morning ketchup!

  1. ‘morning all, a nice saucy post this morning Steve, well done.

    So Stevie Me is banned for the game on April 4th. and Skretl could also get a ban if the FA take action over his stamp on De gea in injury time. I have to admit that as I was watching the game yesterday I was hoping Henderson would cop a red card as well.

    That’s my lot for now, plenty of things to do today.

  2. Rasp says:

    Thanks Steve, you’ve pulled another one out of the keep net 🙂

    Not much has changed after the weekend’s results. The chavs got lucky and the totts cheated their way to 3 points thanks to a dive that video replay would have identified ….. yes, sill banging the video technology drum.

    If Skrtl doesn’t get a ban I can only conclude there is bias right at the top of the FA.

    We have to get several Elephants out of the room if the team is to move up to the next level. One perceived weakness is our inability to get the better of the other top 6 teams so I expect a minimum of 5 points (no losses) in the upcoming games against pool, the chavs and manure. That should secure us 3rd and make 2nd a possibility.

  3. stevepalmer1 says:

    Morning all, who ever tidied that up has my thanks, you have made it, so i look like i know what i am talking about.
    Hope you all had a nice weekend and for those who have gone back to work have a good day.

    A bit of a break now so i expect most of our Gooners will be taking in a break ready for the final onslaught, the lads did look a slightly bit tired i must admit, doesn’t matter how much your paid, the travelling and constant pressure has to give now and again, Ask Arnie 🙂 i have to pop out for a couple of hours but should anybody drop by and leave a comment, i will be back to add my Twopennyworth, catch you later.

  4. Gööner In Exile says:

    Well done Steve, apologies all for not being around for the post win bliss yesterday, fun packed day involving, family, garden centres, owls and gardening.

    Unsurprisingly didn’t actually see any football but had eye on results, shame Chavs managed to get a winner, haven’t seen Courtois’ rick but I assume he didn’t have a cigarette after the game and is still the second best keeper in the world, whilst De ages remains the best.

    Strange how so many of the worlds best players (Kompany best centre back in the world according to pundits to name one of many that are given similar plaudits) play in a league where the teams can’t progress past the latter stages of Europe and the players that feature are not all show ins for their national sides. You know I wish for a while the pundits and media surrounding the PL would take their rose tinted glasses off occasionally.

    Another 3 points in the bag for the good guys and further evidence of any was needed that we do have something like a good squad hiding behind all the club in crisis crap. Time and time again Arsenal are subjected to dogs abuse from the media and opposing fans, too often our own fans join in the digs and criticism. And still they do, some guy phoned up TS today his nan could do a better job, are these people actually fans?

    And now after 3 defeats in 20 games the penny starts to drop again, and this time it’ll hit the bottom a little harder, as not only are we doing enough to finish top 4 and win a FA Cup which of course is so easy to do hence why the media are making such a fuss about everyone’s top 4 credentials and the constant debate is will Liverpool, ManUre, Spuds or Southampton take the 4th spot (but it’s not an achievement at all, it’s not a trophy, that’s why none of those teams really care about it) but we could (if a few results go our way) come within a whisker of winning the title and more probably runners up. If only if only we didn’t have so many injuries in the opening weeks, if only Ollie didn’t break his leg in the most innocuous challenge.

    That’s a lot of if only’s, but this time next season with the same squad and a little bit more luck with injuries we could be more than close. And after the summer with an addition or two, maybe running away with it.

    Question is will us fans allow the media to blow every minor setback out of proportion?

    Don’t know why that turned into a rant, obviously feeling like Arsenal are still a little unloved by the media and I feel like it is up to us the supporters to stand alongside our club a bit better in future. How often have they really let us down? I mean we could be Spuds!!!

  5. Big Raddy says:

    Well played Steve.

    Enjoyed the post very much. Almost as much as seeing Stevie G give his own side a kick in the barbels with a show of remarkable petulance. Shame he is banned for our game.

    Considering how much pressure we were under in the second half N’castle created very little and that is a testament to our defence.

    I will write post about Gabriel’s performance so will not expand here, but he was immense.

  6. Gööner In Exile says:

    Refereeing inconsistency?

    Shearer recommending fitter refs, and suggesting that perhaps they should use League One and Two players who are retiring to become refs in later years. What a joke, most pundits don’t understand the basic laws of the game, or that very few decisions are matter of fact (ball out of play/cross the line, offside (if it’s clear who played the ball last)) everything else is dealt with with the following phrase “if in the referees opinion”……now in many cases we may disagree with the referees opinion, but there are very few people who can have a better opinion than him, state of the game, intent of the player, etc etc.

    You can always guarantee a yellow card for someone who is outmuscled (doesn’t get the foul) chases back and commits a foul, the ref knows the red mist has descended, he sees it as retaliation on the player and dissent to him, in the cold light of day or on a TV replay it may look innocuous, but the referee was right to book him because there are other factors.

    There are 20+ camera angles in ground the ref has one view point, I’m all for increasing number of officials why not 2 either side of the goal, 2 linesman one for offsides one for infringements and one man in the middle, so in total 9 officials, but with very specific jobs.

    I will be constantly worried that video refs would cause to long a delay in the game and will be used for gamesmanship purposes unless as in NFL they can’t be used once 2 minute warning has passed, then what, we say none on last five minutes and there is a decision we want to challenge, change again.

    It is too easy to say video refs will help things.

    Riley has said the referee could be helped by video evidence, take Swarbrick, he had decided on a foul it was in his opinion leading to a goal scoring situation therefore none of that can and should be questioned, but he could have had a little hand in making sure he sent the right player off, same with Gibbs/Ox decision last season at the bus stop.

    If we want to stop diving it is very simple, 3 man panel assesses dubious dives, instant 5 game ban, diving to become a red card offence there and then so if ref does see it straight red.

    Oh and what wouldn’t we be a bad idea is to send all pundits on a referee training course, plus make them referee several games with video scrutiny and Assessors scoring and see if they come anywhere close to the standard of the top officials.

    That’s not to say I think all referees are good, I think they do the best job they can do in difficult circumstances.

    I’d you ever when you were a kid look at the match day programme see a ref and think “oh shite he hates us”, for me probably only two refs I’d know by name, Durkin, Elleray and Hackett and then came the PL era.

  7. Gööner In Exile says:

    Ok make that three 🙂

  8. RC78 says:

    If we beat Liverpool, I think top 4 will be secured…There is quite a gap now between the top 4 and the following teams…

    Let us not lose against Man Utd and the Chavs and let us win vs the Reds and we have secured the Top 4…

    I am a bit annoyed at our inability to kill games or to control games after we take the lead

  9. Rasp says:

    Hi GiE, I take your points. It is easy to say that the use of video referees would make sure that decisions where the referee has clearly made an error could become a thing of the past. It is only the mechanics of how the system would work that are cause for concern in my view.

    I don’t get the ‘delay the game argument’ as there are invariably delays when players contest decisions and these also cause aggravation and dissent between players and the referees and officials.

    My suggestion would be this:

    Don’t go for the ‘allow the manager 2 challenges system’. This could encourage gamesmanship as in the tennis, and the managers are not best placed to see incidents from pitch side, they’d need observers in the stands.

    I would suggest that the referee continues to be in charge of the game as at present but is in communication with officials scrutinising play on screens giving various angles of play and with an instant playback and slo-mo facility..

    If the referee sees an incident for which he intends to give a penalty, red card or other similarly harsh sanction, all he has to do is blow his whistle, tell the video officials what he is intending to do and wait for them to say “yes that is correct, go ahead” or “let us just have a look from another angle” or “it is not clear, go with your instinct”. This would take a matter of seconds with the added bonus that conflict would be avoided and the crowd and players would be confident that as far as is possible, the correct verdict will be given.

    Also the ref blows the whistle and the game stops when the ball hits the back of the net – so why not let the video official just check that there was no offside or other infringement before pointing to the centre circle.

    Lastly, the video official could alert the referee to serious infringements off the ball or where he is unsighted and instruct him to blow the whistle and call back play and deal with the incident.

    None of this would take too long, all of it would benefit the game and lead to a reduction in foul play.

  10. Rasp says:

    I agree with much harsher penalties for diving. I’d also be quite happy to see the ref advance freekicks 10 yards again if there is dissent.

    What if we had no extra time, just rugby-like timekeeping where the clock is stopped when play is suspended? This would cut out the ridiculous slow pigeon steps, shaking hands on the way, time wasting process witnessed when a player from the winning side gets subbed and takes an eternity to get off the pitch.The clock could stop for subs, prolonged injury delays and between goals being scored and the restart.

  11. Big Raddy says:

    Good idea about 90 minutes of the ball in play. Some teams time waste from the first whistle when they come to the Emirates.

    I would also have a referee in each half of the pitch

  12. GoonerB says:

    Thanks Steve for the morning Ketchup. Bit more of a tea and toast man myself 🙂

    Wow I find myself agreeing with both Rasp and GIE on video refereeing such was the well written power of both their arguments.

    GIE your earlier 10.58, I agree that we are in a good position to finish the season on a high if things go right for us in the F.A cup and remaining PL games. Despite this, and I don’t know why I can’t shake it, but I just still have this gut feeling that things on the playing side aren’t as good as they could or should be. I still feel we are playing beneath ourselves relative to the quality of our collective individuals.

    Also, again despite the recent stats saying otherwise, I still only see Ollie as a very good striker but not one of the worlds top strikers, (one that leads the line for a team that wins the big prizes). I worry that his current purple patch will stop us looking for another top striker and we will find out to our cost that we needed something better to really challenge at the highest level.

    I don’t buy into media opinions anyway GIE. These are my own observations and are more to do with my gut feeling on the team through observation this season than any statistical analysis. It just seems to peck away behind me whispering all is not quite right and we are more standing still and gritting it out than progressing towards the improved playing style and balance required to challenge for next years EPL and / or ECL.

    Hopefully my gut feeling will be proven wrong on all counts, and maybe the summers business will give us even greater reason for optimism. I am not panning the team, players and manager left right and centre just expressing some doubts as to where we are and how we move forwards. I will always support the good guys to the hilt regardless.

  13. GoonerB says:

    Reading Rasp and GIE’s comments makes me think maybe it is not either or but a mix of what they are both saying. Not sitting on the fence then GoonerB :}

  14. GunnerN5 says:

    Well Steve you reeled another post game report in, well done.

    I’m all for playing 90 minutes of football controlled by an official timekeeper, but new rules will have to be created to determine when a ball is in play.

  15. GoonerB says:

    Seems there is a lot of talk about Dybala today but who can tell if we a serious or it is just to grab some hits. I like the look of him though. If we were going for him it would suggest Arsene doesn’t see our forward line as complete and does have a plan.

  16. GunnerN5 says:

    Wenger – Best is yet to come for Giroud

    Arsène Wenger is delighted with Olivier Giroud’s recent form – but believes the striker can still improve further.

    The French forward set up the team’s 2-1 win at Newcastle United on Saturday by scoring his 16th and 17th goals of the season.

    Wenger feels Giroud has enhanced the quality of his game since moving to the club in 2012, but says his best performances are still to come.

    Technically he is a much better player and that’s why he scores goals

    “He is a player who has a good mental strength because at 22 he was playing in division three,” Wenger said. “Now he plays at Arsenal. There is still room for improvement for him.

    “He benefits from the fact that he has not started a few games. He has also improved his technical game. Technically he is a much better player and that’s why he scores goals.

    “His touch, his link play, his finishing [has all improved]. He takes some images from when he arrived in England and today he is a better player.

    “I think [he is one of the best strikers around] because he scores the goals, has a presence and he’s a fighter as well. Above all he is a team player – he fights for the team.”

    Copyright 2015 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to as the source Nik Brumsack 22 Mar 2015

  17. Gööner In Exile says:

    Ollie has bettered Drogbas goal scoring record in most seasons, although I am happy for that to be the case and if opponents don’t big him up he can keep going through unnoticed.

    Rasp the problem with blowing the whistle for me is it still stops the game, and my consistent view on video review is that it works in sports that are stop start when the ball goes dead, it doesn’t work when the ball is still live in fact I don’t know of any team sport using video appeals that can stop the game midflow. In 99% of cases I am sure the ball has gone dead, but as I always say, contentious challenge on edge of box, ball runs to keeper, keepers throws to full back who tear arses down wing, but ref has decided he wants to review the challenge, or an appeal from the players or the sideline forces the issue, should we wait until the ball goes dead to challenge, what if the full back has gone full length of pitch and forced corner (or worse scored) when do we pull play back to.

    I would worry that a system where the ref borrows a second pair of eyes will lead to them erring on the side of caution, much like the run out decisions in cricket became constant referral even though many were clearly not.

    I think if a table was done showing results without referee mistakes and results without player mistakes the effect on points would weigh heavier in the players hands than the referee.

  18. GunnerN5 says:

    Raddy I hadn’t tried Ardbeg – your favourite single malt – so I looked it up in my Malt Whiskey companion.

    The distillery can be traced back to as early as 1794 in Port Ellen on the beautiful Isle of Islay.

    Out of a score of 100 it’s lowest was 82 (bottled in 1997) which is considered to be distinctive and exceptional to a high of 94 (30 year old) which is considered to be among the greats. So you have great taste my friend.

  19. Rasp says:

    Thanks GiE. I wasn’t advocating blowing the whistle more frequently, just taking a couple of extra seconds to check the right decision is being made when the whistle is blown (for game changing incidents only)

  20. GunnerN5 says:

    I agree Rasp, don’t stop the game but have mandatory replays of specific decisions – in particular game changing decisions like red cards or penalty’s.

  21. stevepalmer1 says:

    Afternoon all, some blinding comments but only to be expected on AA. Now maybe i am old fashioned but all this talk about video reffing has me at a loss. Football has been going a lot longer than we have lived and we always was happy with a man in the middle and a couple of lines men.

    Personally goal line technology that we all cried out for can go weeks before we ever needed it, and i don’t think it has changed much.

    I feel that Referee’s credibility is more the point , but i’ll come to that in a minute. While the rules of football are not clear cut, you will always get arguments over decisions, did he hand ball it, did he handball it intentionally, Was he interfering with play, is it a professional foul. While we have rules that can be interpreted in a number of ways we will always have controversy.

    I have my doubts about referee’s whether they are taking a back hander has always made me wonder, why the same ref’s are picked for certain games lots of these problems can easily be sorted be for a ball has been kicked.

    If ball hits hand then its a free kick whether it may be intentional or not, if a man is standing in the six yard box in an offside position then if he is not interfering with play why is he there.

    The back line all play the offside they have moved out deliberately to put a player off side so how can that not be interfering. Referee’s fitness is not the concern, more like his integrity is more in question.

    Rules need to be defined so everybody knows the rule in play. once that is sorted then we can assess if it has made a difference. Proved or unproven i don’t believe new rules like video evidence. is going to make much difference as camera’s can also give wrong answers in their placing.

    I went through 30 years of football sometimes without lines men and even sometimes without Ref’s someone stepped in but in my day a ref never got beaten up because of a decision he made.

    It has always been acceptable that the referee has the final word and that is only questioned when the finger gets pointed. a Panel can sit and watch a game and they can change things if they so wish bans have been administered fines and suspensions but all that does is undermined the referee.

    If they want to introduce video technology then take away the referee altogether surely 2 captains can find a thrown coin to toss up with as that will be all a ref is doing.

    I believe that most refs do the best job they can, and if they make too many Mistakes then they should be replaced.

  22. GunnerN5 says:

    Steve, let’s face it – if referee’s were replaced after “too” many mistakes then we would have no referee’s!!

  23. stevepalmer1 says:

    Yeh good point GN5, Trouble nowadays is no bugger understands the rules as they change the buggers all the time

  24. Rasp says:

    I actually think video replays will support the referee and make their job easier – it should lead to greater respect. They can never be replaced, but they can certainly be given the tools to do their job better.

  25. RA says:

    Interesting stuff today.

    On the employment of video technology, is it video jobs for British technology – and what will the Euro Courts say? 🙂

    I find myself broadly on the side of technology but am a tad concerned at technology ‘creep’.

    Confessing that I have grown very fond of rugby, I can also say that the video calls have eliminated many of the ‘factual’ errors in the game, once a try has been scored.

    Except…….at one time technology was used only when the referee requested it, but in the latest international games – well the England v France game, the Video Ref chirped up and told the ref he wanted to check whether the ball had gone forward, and to check if a player had committed a foul.

    Presumably the rules permitted that, but it shows how over-officious officials can start throwing their weight around – and in football terms that could cause a great deal of disquiet.

    Actually the whole thing is moot, as Bladder would never permit technology other than the touch-line technology.

  26. GunnerN5 says:

    We are just the aggrieved fans Steve but when the Referee in Chief suggest’s that his refs need video help it indicates that the whole system needs to be “modernized”

  27. stevepalmer1 says:

    Maybe your right, but i would go back to basics, define the rules and then administer them. How can we make a game the perfect game only by stopping iot every 30 seconds to get the right result.
    Wouldn’t be worth watching.

  28. I’ve made my views on “technology” very clear in the past, I’m agin it!

    At present the referee sees something that he feels is an offence, he deals with it as he sees fit (within the guidelines set down). The vast majority of the decisions referees make are correct. The vast majority of the sanctions handed out by referees are correct. Applying video evidence during the course of a game will only serve to undermine the authority of the officials. It will also undermine the confidence of the officials leading them to abrogate their responsibility and hand the decision making to an anonymous functionary sitting in a TV studio somewhere.

    Put three pundits in a room, show them three contentious situations and see how many different decisions they come up with. I think I can guarantee there will be very few unanimous ones.

  29. stevepalmer1 says:

    Yeh nice one Norfolk,

  30. stevepalmer1 says:

    I watched a game the other day a guy shot on the edge of the box and it was on target and it hit a guys held aloft arm and the ref said it was unintentional the ball was going in the net and the guy stopped it where’s the sense in that, that’s why its called football

  31. GoonerB says:

    Right, I just don’t know where I stand now on video refereeing. You have all befuddled my tiny little brain with your overly intelligent arguments.

    GIE, just out of interest, do you see Ollie as being one of the worlds best strikers and being the striker we need to challenge for the EPL and ECL next year? I was also interested in your Drogba comparison. Do we have a striker that is superior to Drogba (the one of a few years ago) and I am just not seeing it? I am always happy to hold my hands up if I make the wrong call.

  32. stevepalmer1 says:

    Had the guy who shot, misskicked it and it was heading for the corner flag and it hit the same guys arm would it have been a corner because it was unintetional

  33. Here’s an example from El Classico last night. The on pitch referee booked Ronaldo for diving. If we had video replays, the referee could have asked the reviewer to look at the incident, “I think that was a dive, I’m going to book him, can you see any reason not to?”

    The reviewer looks at the video and says “I don’t think he dived”, who’s opinion prevails?

  34. GunnerN5 says:

    However in the same game Bale scored a perfect goal and was given offside – a replay would have corrected an incorrect decision which may well affect the league title.

  35. Bale was not offside, but Ronaldo was and he jumped to head the ball but missed it. The ref was correct in not allowing the goal as Ronaldo had attempted to play the ball and so was interfering with play.

    No video required.

  36. Rasp says:

    NG@ 2:46, it would be as I described in my @ 11:47, the video official should tell the referee to go with his first instinct if the video replay is inconclusive

  37. Gööner In Exile says:

    GoonerB the stats tell one story our eyes tell another, according to most UK media Harry Kane is best thing ever, yet I don’t see it, but I can’t ignore his stats either.

    In comparing Drog and Ollie I was just looking at a forward who I think many Arsenal fans would have liked Arsene to sign, similar start in careers and similar career trajectory.

    Drogbas stats (year:PLapps:PLgoals (AllCompapps:goals)
    04/05 : 26 : 10 (41:16)
    05/06 : 29 : 12 (41:16)
    06/07 : 36 : 20 (60:33)
    07/08 : 19 : 8 (32:15)
    08/09 : 24 : 5 (42:14)
    09/10 : 32 : 29 (44:37)
    10/11 : 36 : 11 (46:13)
    11/12 : 24 : 5 (35:13)

    I’ll be fair on him and stick to his peak years.

    OG Stats
    12/13 : 24 : 11 (47:17)
    13/14 : 36 : 16 (51:22)
    14/15 : 19 : 13 (26:17)

    Not a bad comparison?

    So in only two seasons did Drog out score OG, and Ollies missed half of the current one!

    Will that mean we view him as an equal of Drog? Maybe not, maybe he has to start popping up in games against the big boys with goals but let’s be honest games against the big boys is not necessarily a fair comparison when talking about Drog, he played for a Chav side that prefers not to lose the big games and that means bus parked, which i turns means opponents commit numbers which eventually left Drog in one on ones.

    If we think Ollie isn’t up to the task then I have to question who is? We have a very accomplished centre forward who chips in with a fair share of goals and gives us the plan b we cried out for for so many seasons, so what do we do can we replace him with a Suarez or a Cavani? Surely that means re inventing the wheel, we have developed a system that works well feeding off the big man when needed but also finished when fed by the others.

  38. Rasp says:

    The offside rule definitely needs revising and simplifying. The goal that was allowed when Rooney was a yard offside and just managed to avoid the ball should not have stood because the keeper expected him to make contact. In effect, Rooney dummied the keeper whilst in an offside position therefore he was interfering with play. Any player in an offside position where it is possible that they could score should be given offside as they are affecting the keeper’s positioning.

  39. Gööner In Exile says:

    Not only that Rasp but defenders too, if say a centre back sees Rooney and doesn’t know if he’s offside or not lunges at the ball and diverts it past the keeper that would be allowed to stand, whereas the only reason he plays the ball is to stop it getting to Rooney.

    I always remember Masons shocking decision to allow a Fellaini goal at The Emirates, Fellaini was offside Kozzer attempted to play the ball because Fellaini was there (he was in an offside position when first ball was played) as he had touched it Mason and his officials decided that as it was played by Kozzer it was onside. But Kozzer wouldn’t have played it if Fellaini wasn’t there so surely Fellaini is offside?

    The law used to be you are offside if there is less than two players between you and te goal when the ball is last played forward by a member of your team.

    Not very difficult really. But ballsed up by so many iterations and now we have active/inactive. That said I think the refs have refused this season in line with the rules in front of them.

  40. RA says:


    Your comment and stats at 3:55 are very well presented and difficult to argue against.

    OG is as strong as an ox, and many of his goals are scored just like his second at N’Castle by sheer strength and determination,
    Equally, he is capable of scoring sweetly timed and instantaneous goals with defy flicks off the outside of his boot.

    He has to be a certain starter for us.

    And yet………it comes back to my consistent refrain about all our players, and I know I am being ruthless, but we should be forever monitoring their performances against other players outside the club, and not simply continue on the basis that they are ‘alright’.

    No surprise then that I think/know that Mr Wenger does exactly that, and when he can, he brings in other players like Özil, Sanchez and the Arch Angel, as well as others from time to time to improve the team.

    On that basis, OG makes the grade as he more than holds his own playing the strong, committed CF that he undoubtedly is, but should someone like Benzema or Cavani, for example, become available tin the summer, the same comparative process will be carried out, and either Ollie will stay with us, or AW will try to recruit someone else.

    Ollie for me — but in a ruthless business, if better is available in the future, then ‘san fairy ann’ or should that be – ‘ça ne fait rien’? 😀

  41. Rasp says:

    Good point GiE, the offside player affects the actions and positioning of all the defenders. If this was not the case, why do we applaud players who make runs to pull defenders out of position.

    Routinely attackers stand behind the defending back line when a free kick is about to be launched into the box and step back in line as the kick is taken. The idea is that this will force the defenders to play deeper and free up space for others – this is another illustration of the influence offside players can exert although doesn’t contravene the offside rule if executed correctly. TH14 was a master at drifting behind defenders as if he had some master plan 😀

  42. Rasp says:

    The deliberate obstruction of defenders in the box is another issue that will have to be addressed soon. I know that even at junior level, PL clubs train their players to block off defenders from getting into position to defend a rehearsed freekick scenario.

  43. Big Raddy says:

    Video refereeing is a step too far as I am happy to have the odd controversial decision to rail against. How crap would it be if I couldn’t call the referee an onanist in the black?

    I agree that the current offside rule is somewhat arbitrary but IMO it is better than the old one.

    I would ban divers retrospectively for 3 games. Each time they dived in the future they would have an extra two games added to their punishment. Janusaj and Hazard would never play again!

  44. RockyLives says:

    Thanks Steve

    A fine write-up and I please to hear about your fishing club party. As I always like to say: “Carpe diem!”

  45. RockyLives says:


    I’ve knocked up a quick Post. Unfortunately WordPress doesn’t let me anywhere near the inner workings of the site these days so I’ll send it to arsenal nuts. It needs a Poll adding if you don’t mind…

  46. Rasp says:

    Excellent, thank you Rocky 😀 I’ll add the poll etc

  47. Rasp says:

    I’ll get peaches to investigate why you can’t get behind the scenes?

  48. RA says:

    Carpe diem, eh, Rocket? Enjoy the moment is good advice, but I suspect Stevie Boy would prefer to enjoy the fish! 🙂

    And a Rocky Post to boot — we are honoured indeed! Of course if it was Terry typing that he had knocked up a post, I would worry about what he did to the Post – probably a knot-hole. 🙂

  49. RockyLives says:

    It’s just a WordPress thing Rasp. Every time I comment I have to log back in twice. Driving me crazy.

  50. RockyLives says:

    But Redders, I thought it meant “catch a carp every day”?

  51. GoonerB says:

    GIE, good stats from earlier and they make a strong case. RA makes a good point as well. I have had an alternative view on Ollie for a while (as oppose to my normal we need something slightly better).

    For me there have been some games when Ollie is up against a team playing a high line and the support from other players to him is too slow. I often feel this is when we are playing a better side with more dangerous players which makes our other players work back more into defence leaving Ollie a bit isolated. They can also play the high line because all they have to worry about is 1 non pacy player.

    Despite his often lauded ability to hold the ball and hold the play up, in these games I feel I often see a player where the ball is played to him with back to goal and I feel he loses possession before he gets the support. Personally I feel this is a direct consequence of him not having the option due to his lack of pace to run onto a ball in a vacated wide channel instead, as you would often see say Suarez do. This is then a different way to then hold it up in these positions rather than with back to goal arms out and 2 CD’s trying to dispossess him.

    Where I feel Ollie is very good (apart from his obvious improvement in finishing) is in when he plays around the edge of the box playing little 1-2’s with team mates. His touch, control and ability to play a deft short ball are excellent. I like it when he drops slightly and other players make runs beyond him. As such Ollie is an excellent and dangerous player when he gets in and around the opponents box and has team-mates running off him. When he is too far away from the opposition goal and is isolated he becomes much more of a passenger IMO.

    I feel if Giroud is to be our number 1 striker going into next season and be effective against the big teams the balance of the team around him has to be right. I don’t always think we have blended the right players in the right positions around Ollie this season which has led to some of those stagnant performances.

    For me the most critical part is to have 2 pacy wing forwards who both score goals. We need to recreate the Robben and Ribery situation that Munich have recently had. This would allow Ollie to drop off the CD’s slightly receive the ball and use his great link up play to find one of these wide players running beyond him. That means no more of this playing the slower ACM’s like Ozil or Ramsey from wide positions, which with the players we have could cause a selection headache.

    The 2nd thing that would improve it is if we have a number 10 (or the most attacking of the CM’s) who will work off Ollie and score more goals. Ramsey actually seems our best goal scoring CM who seems to have the natural instinct to get into the box. Should we play Ramsey behind Ollie? What do we do with Ozil then?

    The 3rd alternative is that everything I have just said is total bollix and has no merit in it whatsoever……What’s that you say?….yeh that is probably the most likely.

  52. RA says:

    It would not hurt to figure out the ‘Off-side Rule’, altho’ Norfolk knows all about it – obviously.

    We could do with our man 26M to explain the intricacies – but as a poor substitute I will give it a go. 🙂

    It’s easy really:

    Here’s what’s what:-

    1. You can’t be offside if:
    2. You receive the ball directly from a goal kick, a throw-in or a corner
    3. You are in your own half of the pitch
    4. You are level with the second last or last two opponents
    5. You are level with or behind the ball
    6. You are not actively involved in play, as explained above
    7. For any offside offence, the referee awards an indirect free-kick to the opposing team, to be taken from the place where the infringement occurred.

    The thing is it can become a bit sneaky:-

    There is something called the ‘active’ rule
    So, it is possible for a players to be in an offside position but not be offside.
    Yup that’s right – just ask Norfolk. 🙂

    The rule says that a player is in an offside position if, when the ball is played by a team-mate, they are nearer to the opposition’s goal line than both the ball and the second last opponent.

    The referee’s assistant will normally make the decision based on the above.

    However, to encourage attacking football (more goals) the ‘new’ rule allows a player to be in an offside position provided they are not actively involved or interfering with play. [That’s right isn’t it NG?] 🙂

    Fifa says this means:
    “Interfering with play means playing or touching the ball passed or touched by a team-mate.”

    Clearly a player does not necessarily have to touch the ball to influence or interfere with play.
    They are still offside if, in the opinion of the referee, they are judged to be – ‘Interfering with an opponent.’

    – If an attacker interferes with an opponent by either preventing them from playing or being able to play the ball by clearly obstructing the opponent’s line of vision or movements or making a gesture or movement which deceives or distracts an opponent, then they are offside. [So God knows what the Rasper was going on about.] 🙂

    – Gaining an advantage If the ball is played into the penalty area and he plays the ball that rebounds to him off a post, crossbar or an opposing defender, then the attacker is offside as they have gained an advantage by being in that position.

    It’s easy-peasy – except it is all open to interpretation – and as we have seen, if a ref can send off Gibbs, or was it Ox, when the Ox, or was it Gibbs, handled in the area – what the stuff the ref sees when he is in ‘interpretation mode’ is clearly anybody’s guess.

    Me? I rely on Norfolk – what he says goes!! 😀

  53. RC78 says:

    I think there are better strikers than OG around but not that many and also not that many that will fit-in our current squad…OG still needs to improve but his link-up play and his play with the goal in his back is good and he adds this physical dimension to our game. Would you trade him for among potential available strikers this summer?

    – Cavani, why not as he is very strong and a good team player?
    – Kane?
    – Benzema?
    – Lacazette?
    – Reuss?

  54. Big Raddy says:

    RA. In the “old days” I was able to explain the offside law using salt and pepper cellars, an HP sauce bottle and a fork.

    That is the trouble with the modern world – everything is becoming too complex

  55. RA says:

    Cavani? Maybe.
    Kane? No way!
    Benzema? Possibly.

    Lacazette and Reus are not CFs.

  56. RA says:

    It is not really complex, Radster.
    The referee can make of it what he wants – and no bugger can contradict him.

    It’s ‘interpretashun mate – innit?’ 😀

  57. RA says:

    Anyway, Raddy, when in doubt – ask the Norfolkian! 🙂

  58. RockyLives says:

    You’re brave, taking on the job of explaining Offside.

    Next you’ll be telling us Who’s on Third…

  59. RA says:

    Hi GB,

    Forgot to thank you for being my bestest mate, giving me credit earlier for making a good point – which you never revealed, and I hadn’t made.

    Excellent!! 😀

  60. RockyLives says:

    I’ve always loved this simple way of explaining cricket to Johnny Foreigner:

    “You have two sides, one out in the field and one in. Each man that’s in the side that’s in goes out, and when he’s out he comes in and the next man goes in until he’s out. When they are all out, the side that’s out comes in and the side thats been in goes out and tries to get those coming in, out. Sometimes you get men still in and not out.
    When a man goes out to go in, the men who are out try to get him out, and when he is out he goes in and the next man in goes out and goes in. There are two men called umpires who stay all out all the time and they decide when the men who are in are out.
    When both sides have been in and all the men have out, and both sides have been out twice after all the men have been in, including those who are not out, that is the end of the game!”

  61. Big Raddy says:

    RC. We have seen that a wonderful striker like Falcao can struggle in the frenetic PL. Why take a risk and many millions of € on a striker who has no PL experience? How many have arrived and done well in their first season? Costa and Suarez but apart from them?

    Not even TH14 did well.

    So I would stick with OG and Welbz.

  62. RA says:


    My 6:23 makes my position clear — as mud. It’s yer acktuall reffing ref! 😀

  63. Big Raddy says:

    RL Perfectly clear.

    I am ready for tonights semi-final. New Zealand vs S. Africa. Should be a cracker

  64. RA says:

    Rocky, I am always more worried about who is left in the bull pen! 🙂

  65. RA says:


    I spotted your fatal flaw;

    — “and when he is out he goes in and the next man in goes out and goes in” [until he is out and then he goes back in]

    I am good at obfuscation – you might have noticed – but not as good as GoonerB A Worm. 🙂

  66. RockyLives says:

  67. RockyLives says:

    Oh well, that didn’t work.

  68. RA says:

    What do you mean it did not work?

    Those furry little guys will understand and make it work – easy!! 🙂

  69. stevepalmer1 says:

    Evening all, when talking about Giroud, yes he is slow and yes he turns badly but when you look at some of his goals so many come from a cross of some sort,

    The trouble with this is that we do not cross often enough, we like to attack down the centre which really doesnt suit his talents.

  70. fatgingergooner says:


    The guys on Sunday Supplement were saying how they were invited to a linesman seminar and they were tested to make calls from actual games. They said they were adiment they got them all right but when they were shown it again the guys were 3 yards offside! Apparently the linos do a lot of eye training to get their reactions spot on. Just shows how much goes into it.

    As for technology, football would be boring without some disagreements, but there’s no excuse for sending off the wrong player in this day and age. The refs already blowback, so why not take 20 seconds to check who it is?
    Same with goals. The balls in the back of the net, so why not check if it was handled into the goal, or if it was obviously offside?

    It’s not easy to get rid of all mistakes, but some of the obvious ones can easily rectified.

  71. stevepalmer1 says:

    What has made it more difficult for the officials is the amount of blatant cheating by the players, aA player simulates a dive and these guys obviously practice like an actor till they get it just right, The referee would ask his officials if they have seen what has happened if he is not sure, The fourth official would have two managers screaming at him so he would be pre occupied and the linesmen could possibly have players or the referee obstructing his vision.

    The referee would be under pressure to make a fairly quick judgement, and often he would be deciding on instinct.

    I have been watching a game on tv where we get a really good view but of course that is only if the cameras are lined up just right because often i feel an offside and when replayed the player is well onside when the ball was kicked.

    It is now a tactic to get an opposing player booked early and for a team to work on said player in rota form. I feel that players are their own worst enemies when decisions go against them. blatant cheating helps nobody.

  72. chas says:

    Cheers, Steve, a fine summary of the weekend’s action.
    So only the dippers dropped points.
    I’m sure the race for the top will have as many twists and turns as a Santi dribble, yet.

  73. stevepalmer1 says:

    Evening Chas, one of the games i watched this weekend not sure what one now, Had a thick set black guy who picked the bakk uo often with his back to goal all over the park but the way the guy took the ball in his stride and turned was a pleasure to watch Oli could pick up a few tips from him.

  74. fatgingergooner says:

    Players falling down easily is pretty much part of the game now. I don’t mean blatant diving, I mean when players go down when there is some contact and the ball is running away from them, or if they feel the ref wont give a free kick if they stay on their feet. I can sort of accept that this is the modern game now, espescially abroad.

    What really p*sses me off though is the rolling around and feigning injury. There is absolutely no need for it and it doesn’t gain them any advantage, so why do it? It’s f***ing pathetic watching grown men like Pepe grabbing at their limbs like they’ve been shot. Embarrassing.

  75. chas says:

  76. Big Raddy says:

    Morning All,

    If Robbie says it, it must be true 🙂 (see my 5.12)

  77. Rasp says:

    Robbie Savage is a doughnut 🙂

    Morning all …. we have a treat for today, watch this space

    Hmmmmm Sturridge out injured for England, what’s the betting he will recover just in time to play against us. It’s been said before, but any player who claims to be injured for international duty should not be allowed to play in the first game following.

  78. Rasp says:

    The cricket is getting interesting …. come on NZ, 67 required off 48 balls

  79. Rasp says:

    …. New post ……………

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