What Happened Up at WHU?

It was as strange game; Arsenal scoring 3 goals away and yet taking only one point is unusual, as is a player scoring a hat-trick against us (when was the last time?).

We started with the team everyone wanted apart from the odd omission of Cech which IMO was massive. Cech dominates his area in a manner which Ospina cannot  and I am sure he would have stopped at least one of the goals.

Midfield: We were lauding our new defensively aware pairing of Coqeny, yet we were over-run for much of the game – how did that happen?

CB’s? Can’t really complain because they played as well as expected. Perhaps they could have got closer to Caroll for his second but it was a well taken goal.

And we were punished by Bilic’s tactic of attacking the space behind our full backs, WHU cleverly made sure that Caroll was challenging our wimpy Spanish fullbacks. Couldn’t see Lauren getting bullied like Bellerin was! Fortunately there are no teams in the PL who have such an aerially dominant CF.

Upfront: No complaints. We scored three, made other chances and Mr Wenger made attacking substitutions to try and win the game.

Referee: Bottled it. Our boys were continually hammered. A few more yellows, a straight red for Caroll was the least he could have done, but well-played the linesman who refused WHU a legitimate opener.

Looking at the stats, we dominated possession yet had fewer shots and less corners which indicates we were a bit too tippy-tippy and on a pitch which quite frankly was more suited to the Grand National than a football match we were always going to struggle.

Another way of looking at the game was that we took a point from a tough away fixture, played a part in an exciting 6 goal thriller and came back from a losing position



73 Responses to What Happened Up at WHU?

  1. LB says:

    That sort of sums it up perfectly, difficult to add anything really.

  2. mickydidit89 says:

    Agree with LB.
    Well played Erik, and thanks.

    I’m definitely on the side that it was a six goal thriller, and a good away point at the Leagues sixth best side.

    Now here’s my real take. It denied W’Ham the chance of catching us. In other words, pre match, I was looking down rather than up. I simply didn’t feel we were going to win all remaining games, combined with an epic collapse from Leicester, as well as a Spud disintegration.

    I still believe top four is important for a number of reasons, and just pray Leicester go the distance.

  3. mickydidit89 says:

    Oh and…

    The other day LB listed the Leicester and Spud fixtures. Looking at our own, in comparison to City, Utd and W’Ham there are some interesting overlaps.

    Cup game between Utd and Wham being one. Will the victors get distracted from the League, ditto City tonight and the CL, then of course, The Arsenal play Sunderland, Norwich, City and Villa as our last four games.

    All four could have determined relegation, avoided relegation or confirmed CL place set in concrete before we meet them.

  4. chas says:

    Cheers, BR.
    Right on the money.

    The only point I’d like to query (as it seems you’ve summed it up perfectly – leaving no room for discussion 🙂 ) is that we were overrun in midfield for much of the game.

    When the line-ups were announced the TV made a big thing of Bilic playing 3-4-3 and flooding the midfield.
    After 35 minutes and with us 2-0 up, it looked as though Bilic’s tactics had failed.
    He changed formation at half-time in spite of Carroll’s two goals.
    Their chances were mainly from second phase after free-kicks and corners.
    Admittedly they had had a legitimate goal ruled out after 15 minutes. 🙂

    For the last 25 minutes Coq and Elneny weren’t playing so we were bound to be a little light in the middle of the park.
    While they were on the pitch, they were bypassed by the Hammers shoving it out wide and launching missiles into the box.

    Bilic’s tactic which was a roaring success was playing Carroll, knowing we hate playing him.

    I realise this is largely rubbish but hope it helps to revive the dead donkey.

  5. nrasul01@gmail.com says:

    What about at least trying to stop the supply?

    No one came out to close down the cross in open play.
    Corners, why not place a 1st man on the edge of the box?

  6. mickydidit89 says:

    Donald Trump would do more for world peace than Military Hillary 🙂

    I wonder if anyone is capable of talking about that?

  7. chas says:

    If only Wenger would come out with something like this. 🙂

    We’re gonna win so much, you may even get tired of winning, and you’ll say, ‘Please, please, it’s too much winning – we can’t take it anymore’

  8. Big Raddy says:

    World peace? Impossible, there has never in history been world peace so why now?

    Stop the supply? No chance unless we learn to park the bus and that is not going to happen unless we are playing MC or Barca.

    chas. Rubbish 😀

  9. Eddie says:

    cheers Raddy, nice summary.

    Personally I thought it strange not to include Cech and BFG to deal with Carroll, but may be they were not fully fit.

    Because I waved good bye to the title a couple of months ago, a point was enough to cheer me up. Great game, ok result, on to the last 5.

    Did someone here asked a question in January if we can win all remaining 18 games ? He is not bloody likely to admit it, is he 🙂

    I have very limited access to the internet, hence prolonged silences. Nothing too serious this time.

  10. naz says:

    Stopping the supply = trying to at least close down the space, block the cross. It won be a sure fire thing, but we need it in our game.

  11. Thanks Raddy

    That game reminded mo of one of those Italian operas. Some overweight mustochioed desperately in love with the beautiful flower seller Isabella, thanks to Ozil and Sanchez, takes her on two dates and belts out a magnificent soprano declaring his undying love, all this whilst somehow preventing his trousers falling down

    He then goes to her window but half way through a rendition of One Cornetto, Andy Carroluchi, getting there first before Monteal, sticks his head out of the window and threatens that his uncle is in the mafia and delivers pin point crosses.

    He suffers as he watches his love wined and dined by the horrible Carroluchi, the mans a brute, bullying the owner of the paper stall Kosieneliy, and taking the piss out of local simpleton Gabrielchelli.

    His only consolation is Kosieneliy freaking out and hitting Carroluchi with a nice finnish to the corner, but it’s to late.

    Isabella loves Carroluchi, the man has an excellent waist circumference, and he fears Issabella will take him to the European Championships

    His heart broken, he breaks into the Collesium, avoiding the extortionate ticket prices and smarmy tour guide sellers, and the magnificent old stadium comes to life. The Roman hoards chant “Top four once more, Wengernelie must pay, release the Lions, and a very large transfer fund”

  12. mickydidit89 says:

    Dear God, Transplant, your mind is tuely a magnificent piece of machinery 🙂

    Right, City game for me

  13. mickydidit89 says:

    Well that was rubbish

    Need a Paris goal as a livener

  14. chas says:

    Games without goals are shite, aren’t they?

  15. mickydidit89 says:

    yes they are 🙂

    I mean, what’s the ‘effing point 🙂

  16. mickydidit89 says:

    Scouting is what I’m doing and it is not encouraging. They’re all rubbish

  17. Thanks Raddy. I think we could have defended better but I’ve said that before 😉 maybe there was too much of a relaxed attitude to Andy Carroll thinking ‘ah well he won’t be able to do that again’ after the first goal.

    Maybe we should have scored five while we had the space – games are much more fun when there are lots of goals …….. scored by us 🙂

  18. Hi chaps – do we know why Nikki B was told not to train anymore by Wolfsburg?

  19. chas says:

    Wasn’t Rabiot one of the players we should have been after?
    He’s looked pub-average.

  20. chas says:

    He was just too fit,

    de Brain

  21. mickydidit89 says:

    He’s French for gods sake 🙂

    Ahha Peaches 🙂

  22. chas says:

    You’re gonna be so fit, you may even get tired of being fit, and you’ll say, ‘Please, please, it’s too much being so fit – I can’t take it anymore’

  23. mickydidit89 says:

    Da Brian I always thought 🙂

  24. Oh poo City going to the semi-finals at the moment. City v Barca Final?

  25. chas says:

    Cavani fell foul of Joe Hart’s big left arm.
    Shite finisher.

  26. chas says:

    It’s good for us, P.
    More distraction from overtaking us. 🙂

  27. mickydidit89 says:

    Cavani is brilliant
    Totally wasted by that idiot Blanc 🙂

  28. mickydidit89 says:

    Agree Chas
    I can’t imagine the players or their pathetic supporters bothering with the league now

  29. Nikki B was too fit 🙂 🙂 🙂

  30. Sorry mad internet at the mo so comments appearing out of order lol

  31. chas says:

    Mel Blanc is a shite manager

  32. chas says:

    I just copied you.
    Looking down is less stressful.

  33. chas says:

    The Emptihad looks quite full tonight.

  34. chas says:

    At least we have the decency to only use our flags once.
    Then again we haven’t been ahead in a QF recently so just maybe.

  35. mickydidit89 says:

    Mel Blanc ha ha

    Looking down on people, or other football teams, always makes you feel better. Sometimes you need to look hard, but always works 🙂

  36. chas says:

    G’night, sleep tight.

  37. chas says:

    I meant down the league.
    Not my nose.

    Weird how I look down on a billionaire.
    Democracy, I suppose.


  38. mickydidit89 says:

    A billionaire?
    Oh no, you haven’t joined the Kroenke out brigade have you?


  39. And it’s goodnight from me 😉

  40. SharkeySuresGhost says:

    Evening all

    Great point Mickey, re stopping WHam from catching us.

    Chas what have you done..?? I’m listening to Trump rally now …15mins in and kinda hooked.

    He kinda reminds me of Boris Johnson…not just the hair but all gush and bluster.

    Its pretty incredible that his ridiculous rants get cheers ..even allowing for the fact they are his supporters anyway.

    Lastly how do you get to post a video and ensure it’s start point is 49.00 out of 49.45, and not the start ie 00.00. Sorcery….coloured (not black !!) magic..??

  41. SharkeySuresGhost says:

    Ref was poor on Sat, but not as poor as our defending.

    Re Mert not starting, Carroll has hardly played lately and deffo not from the start.

    Bellerin and Monreal just needed to be cuter with Carroll. Get closer to him, and make sure he has to run you over to get to the ball. Grapple him a bit before the ball is even crossed, and he if he shrugs you off there’s a good chance its called a foul…

    Gary Medel ex of Cardiff would do that very well…but the main guy was a little Sth American played at CB for Inter Milan for quite a while.

    Please please if anyone can recall him….its been killing me since I first brought it up on Sun

  42. SharkeySuresGhost says:

    Ivan Cordoba….thanks t’internet.

    I DIDN’T find him here:

    …but it was a good read/scan. No.36 (of top 50) was born in 1912 !!!

    #WellResearched 🙂

  43. Gööner In Exile says:

    Beginning to think it’ll be funny if Pep has to follow another manager who has just won CL.

    Didn’t see any of the game as I have been on a short break to lovely Southwold. If you like good seafood and are ever in the Southwold area no better eatery than SoleBay Fish Company’s Smokehouse, only opens to serve food between 12-3, most of the cooked food is your average fried variety of fish soaked in batter, although still damn good (we had that version at their in town chippie on Friday night, but the seafood on offer in the platters….crab, whelks, cockles, prawns, shrimps, crevettes, sprats, mussels….bloody marvellous, and G and H tucked into most of it, including the whelks, although H prefers prawns and chips, G tried everything once and returned for second helpings of everything.

    So thanks for the footy report, I didn’t watch, and checked scores occasionally, only thing that cheered me up was another Leicester win, I reckon they’ll have the league won before there tough games, and even if they don’t it’s not like they haven’t silenced the doubters through their other tough games. Neither of the teams above us have beaten us, so what’s that say?

  44. chas says:

    you add #t=49m0s to the end of the youtube link when you paste it.
    All billionaires are knobheads by definition.


  45. chas says:

    I don’t eat enough seafood.

  46. chas says:

  47. mickydidit89 says:

    Ha ha ha poor Sharkey

    Sounds like he pushed play on the Chas Trump vid. Not only that, but it was 49 mins ROLF

  48. mickydidit89 says:

    “scored in prime number minutes”

    That is brilliant and precisely what stats are for 🙂

  49. mickydidit89 says:

    Benfica Barca. Looking forward to that too. Wow, am I enjoying my football more since giving up on any hope with Arsenal.

    My new outlook has liberated the football fan within. Free from the burden of expectation. Hippy’ish

  50. chas says:

    Sometimes looking up is nicer.

  51. chas says:

    Attachment is suffering.

  52. mickydidit89 says:

    Should I tell my wife that?

  53. mickydidit89 says:

    The Clinton Foundation and Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign have enjoyed numerous donations from Saudi Arabia

    She is evil and directly in the pay of arms dealers and sponsors of terrorism and the persecution of women

    Vote Iwobi

  54. Big Raddy says:

    Morning All,

    Watched some of the MC game mainly to check out the haircuts which were far better than the football. Rabiot’s must be a wig.

    Top work from Terry last night 🙂

  55. Big Raddy says:


    All politiicians are in someone’s pocket. Hilary has marginally better hair than Trump so gets my vote

  56. chas says:

    All politicians are not worthy of any trust whatsoever.

  57. mickydidit89 says:

    back tonight for footie
    have good days

  58. mickydidit89 says:

    And you’ll probably both insist people should vote!


  59. Big Raddy says:

    Guess it is down to me to write the post 😦

  60. mickydidit89 says:

    No, it is not Erik
    If people want a blog, they can get off their arses

  61. kelsey says:

    Have you got a league table without prime numbers,no heat maps, all the london and Manchester clubs bar ours, Chas 🙂

  62. TotalArsenal says:

    With not playing Cech, the BFG and Giroud, Arsene weakened the spine in favour for speed and fluidity. It worked against the FA cup dreamers of Everton and Watford, who sat off us and allowed ElCoqny to dominate midfield, but against the Hammers we lacked organisation and control, and a lot of extra inches in the air.

    Having said that, our attacking play was mouthwatering at times with all that fluidity. 😜

    Fine post BR and well done for keeping the blog going. 😀

  63. kelsey says:

    Hello Total

    I have been banging on for years that a really good team is built first and foremost on a solid defence that understand each other and plays as a unit.

    I have politely argued this point with Micky several times.

    However AW still wants the fluid attacking football as do the crowds but unfortunately on too many ocasions this season we have fallen short in defence,midfield and attack.

  64. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi Kelsey 😀

    If it was up to Micky there would be no defence at all, just four CFs and six attacking midfielders and a goalie who joins every set piece! 😜

  65. Gööner In Exile says:

    In drafts Raddy for you to do the honours.

  66. Gööner In Exile says:

    TA I was sure BFG would be back in for Andy Carroll and the organisation required to deal with him and the inevitable bombardment, if we had BFG, Kos and Ospina I would not have been too concerned because BFG is good at marshalling those around him and it is that and his positional sense that still make him in my eyes a useful asset.

    Ospina has had very few poor games for us, and without seeing the goals yet I am not keen to say Cech would have coped better, after all who was at fault for the opening goal in the home game from a high ball, and there have been more than one occasion where his aerial ball judgement has been questionable at best.

    I think our biggest problem this year has not been at the back, it has clearly been going forward, score goals get the opposition to open up and then score more, whereas we have struggled to score started committing more men forward and left ourselves open to counter attacks. Joint 4th best defence and 4th best goals for, the defensive end suffers from some of this games where he have had to chase once going behind, Rasp has often said we are over eager to get one back after conceding which then leads to us being open to concede again, that has been one of our worse traits this season and led to the 4 conceded at Saints and the 3 at ManUre…. To fix that is a mindset thing and maturity of players on the pitch, and where the likes of Santi, BFG and Cech come in useful with experience and calm heads when others are losing their shape. Problem is for us that we have missed that cool head in centre midfield in Santi and we lost our way around the same time.

  67. TotalArsenal says:

    That is a great, dense with quality comment, GiE. 😄

    I love Ospina too but taking out Cech AND BFG is one calm head too many imo – but I think we both agree on this.

    Agreed also on the balance between attack and defence factor. You mention Santi’s absence as a big factor but I am not sure it is just that. The partnership of the wall of CoCa offered the best balance imo, with Coquelin keeping it simple and tidying up and Cazorla free to support Ozil and Co or sit in line with the Frenchman.

    Having said that, the full backs and ‘mid wingers’ we’re not tight units against the Hammers and ElCoqny were busy keeping the Hammers central midfielders from penetrating through the middle.

    Would Santi have seen that and ordered his fellow players to get their act together? I am not sure he would have.

  68. Big Raddy says:

    Thanks GIE. Will publish early as I am going out.

  69. Big Raddy says:

    There is a New Post

  70. bocking says:

    Hey Guys- I’ve just set up a blog that will be mostly covering the Gunners, please feel free to check it out, Cheers! https://themoderngameblog.wordpress.com

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