Totally disagree with the Ramsey criticism.

Playing the Welshman on the left wing is not ideal, of course, but are people’s memories really so short that they cannot remember how nervous Iwobi was in recent games?

The international break does drag on I suppose but surely we can swim round the bowl at least once and retain some of the previous game?

Iwobi’s confidence was shot, it was generally acknowledged that he needed a break and that is what he got and rightly so in my opinion.

Iwobi offers nothing defensively, Ramsey doesn’t offer that much but he certainly offers more and furthermore having him on the field meant that he could fire fight; that’s to say, that he could be deployed anywhere that needed an extra hand. He was also able to be played in his second best position when needed which is deep-laying midfield, picking the ball up from the back and driving the attack forward.

Arsenal's Aaron Ramsey

Wenger made this switch on Saturday as happens every single time that Ramsey plays on the wing which is usually wide right, it is a game plan, otherwise known as plan A.

It didn’t work as Wenger hoped so he reverted to plan B which clearly got us out of jail.

For those who have bothered reading this far you might have noticed that I said “second best position” his first choice is Ozil’s and that obviously isn’t going to change unless his German Greatness gets an injury.

Being an Arsenal supporter I understand the need to scapegoat one player, it is in our DNA and I am no different — Walcott, Walcott — Why?

Theo seems to have improved but when you look at it; or at least when I look at it, it becomes clear that he has only preformed better against lesser teams because when it has came to crunch time which has been the case against spuds and manu he has underperformed. During both games Theo had slightly less time when he got the ball and due to his poor close control he repeatedly lost possession and this impacts on Ozil and Sanchez’s effectiveness.

You can see them both thinking when they have the ball, shall we pass to Walcott who they know will more often than not lose it or if he does control it he doesn’t have the skill set to be able to return it to either of those two; so instead, both Özil and Sanchez have to look for each other which makes it easier for defenses to defend against us; that’s to say, it is easier because it is like only having two men up front instead of three.

We were playing with ten men on Saturday and the problem is not Ramsey it is Walcott: Perez cannot come back quick enough for me.

An LB offering.

72 Responses to Totally disagree with the Ramsey criticism.

  1. Big Raddy says:

    LB. Good read as always, thank you.

    I have only seen the highlights but it looked as though the entire team was poor, no need to scapegoat Ramsey or Walcott, let’s scapegoat them all.

    That being the case, why did the lethargy occur and who is responsible?

    If anyone, it has to be Arsene,

  2. Gabo says:

    This article ain’t about our team – it’s about a hurt Ramsey fan. He’s not an Arsene wenger player the way Yaya is a Pep player.
    He has has a half season where he was one of the best attacking midfielders in Europe.
    You diss Theo like Chelsea ain’t a big team & he was lethal against them – his form the early part of this season has assisted the explosive effect of Sanchez.
    Ramsey should be judged by performances for Wales but by what he does for us – Elneny saved us last season after Ramsey kept fluffing his lines after Santi’s injury.

  3. Red Arnie says:

    Thank you, LB. Nice thoughts. 🙂

    Yes, we were not playing great footie, but we were braving on manly. Even Jenks was putting his heart into it. And we then gave a goal away, which started with a misplaced Rambo pass. Defence? Sorry, no. Much happier with even the Ox or Theo falling back and helping with the defence.

    It would help if Rambo could get the ball out of defence safely. Every time without fail. Just my opinion. 🙂

  4. LB says:


    Chelsea aren’t a big team and as much as we want to tell ourselves that we were great against them the truth, that we would prefer not to admit, is that they really had an off day as their recent results show.

    It is odd though how Theo always does seem to play well against them.

  5. Big Raddy says:

    Gabo. An interesting point of view especially the question of whether AR is a Wenger player.

    IMO he most certainly is. In fact, of all the players at AFC Ramsey would be one of my first choices of a “wenger player”. AW loves a multi-purpose element in the team. Ramsey can do it all, and usually does.

    Who do you think is an AW player? Ozil? Theo? Both went missing at OT

    AR was crap at OT but so were many others.

  6. crispen says:

    I could not agree with you more. I think we threw away(for a year anyway) our best option for that position..Campbell. Assuming Alexis is up top. Campbell is better both ,offensively and defensively, than Ox, Iwobi and Walcott.
    It looks like Gnabry was also better than what we chose to keep.

  7. LB says:

    Ramsey was poor until he was deployed in a more appropriate position which the more eagle eyed will notice was the time when we finally started playing well and the time in which we equalised but prior to that Ramsey had an valid excuse — he was playing on the left wing.

    What was Theo’s excuse for consistently losing possession and generally being a waste of space?

  8. Mitchell says:

    Playing Ramsey on the flank most times doesnt work for us at all. and pairing elneny with couquelin was a disaster. u could clearly see how man utd had the midfield under total control. there was so much space for herera and pogba to thrive. we more we keep forcing ramsey to play on the flanks lets just get ready for more draws. our midfield should have been walcott xhaka couquelin chamberlain. with ozil playing behind sanchez.

  9. LB says:


    Lay your team out that you would have liked to have seen against manu so we can see exactly what you mean?

    Obviously you are going to start with.


    Jenkinson, Mustafi, Koscienly, Monreal

    Now what?

  10. tuncasjo says:

    Both the writer and arsenal handler’s claim are wrong. It is obvious that wenger like Ramsey and that was why he played full 90 minutes on d pitch with ill-performance. Let me talk you even if Cazorla is back, wenger would start Ramsey ahead of vanilla and be given flimsy claims. Theo scored against Chelsea, is that a lesser team. Wenger should argue his boys to step up their football spirit especially when they are playing mourinho’s team so that we fans of Arsenal will believe that Wenger is afraiding so called special one

  11. meaner says:

    You mentioned about walcott’s close ball control? No one is worse than Ramsey for that. He persistently gives the ball away cheaply, always trying to be too clever, and only plays for himself. I cannot remember anyone who lose possession more than him.

  12. meaner says:

    i hope i am wrong. Age seems to have catch up with monreal lately. He is not as dependable now.

  13. wally says:

    Great to nick a point off that performance. manure did a good job of squeezing the middle and forcing us to the wings where we’re not nearly as effective. Their back line was about as weak as they could put out there and we never tested them. Never. They’re going to need to figure a way to overcome that. A year or two ago that result was extremely unlikely to happen.
    Ramsey? Very good off the ball. Making great runs, good movement. On the ball. Well that’s another story isn’t it. Especially under pressure.Close control is just good enough to make him think he’s got a chance. His passing? Not good enough to control the game.
    But he’s good to have on the team. A Swiss army knife in that he can play all over the pitch. I think at the end of the day his best position is lying deep and making those runs into the box. But he needs to play alongside someone who is very good defensively. That can let him roam.
    i thought coquelin had a poor game. After psg we need to give sanchez a rest. Wenger needs to enforce that.

  14. Red Arnie says:

    Sorry, my mistake. Rambo’s mispass was for the penalty appeal. anyway, the point stands. if you are chosen to fulfil a role within the team, even if that is not your best position, you will be judged on how well you fulfill that role. period.

    however, the team fought hard and made the best of a bad situation, so no scapegoating is not the order of the day.

  15. fred1266 says:

    Am I going mad or didn’t I read this yesterday

  16. fred1266 says:

    Ramsey best season was coming from the wing, he was tired from internationals

  17. Red Arnie says:

    LB. BTW, Theo was also very poor on the day. But the answer is really not Perez, it is actually blowing in the wind, even if you try to ignore it. 🙂

    What a brilliant goal! we got away with an away point, and good feelings from wiping the grin out of Maureen’s face, so I am not complaining. Not much anyway.

  18. LB says:


    You are not going mad, I did post the above yesterday but I realised immediately after that it could be used as a post on a quiet day and today has turned out to be just that. Although; that said, I am pleased that there are a few new names up there.

  19. TotalArsenal says:

    Post interlull games are hard, MU away games are hard, games against Mourinho teams are hard… so well done to rob a point from old toilet. It was ugly, pedestrian and ideal for prolonging love making, but the boys did ok and left our opponent nine points behind the leaders hahaha.

    Play the same 11 against the Parisians and send them back with the Eiffel Tower between their legs. Good post LB and almost all agreed. 😄

  20. Akole Austin says:

    I fail to understand Wengers loyalty to Ramsey. What does Ramsey bring to the team, really.

  21. StewD0G says:

    Ramsey was absolutely awful there is no way he can be defended..if he didnt give the ball away he passed sideways or backwards..iwobi or ox should have started on the left..and wenger completely messed up the shape of the team..coquelin and elneny could not deal with the pressure being applied onto them by herrera and co and could only play hurried passes sideways..xhaka had to start this game but wenger bottled it because he was nervous of him getting sent off..we had absolutely no penetration into midfield areas..people are criticising ozil but he didnt receive the ball at all in the areas where he can cause damage..sanchez dropped to deep and walcott did not keep the width..i blame wenger for awful tactics..i still can’t get my head round what the thinking was with that team he started..completely imbalanced

  22. fred1266 says:

    OK LB only realize when I read about theo not performing on big game

  23. LB says:


    Understanding why Wenger fielded the side he did is fairly easy to grasp.

    Look at the forward line against Chelsea, Basel, Watford, Burnley, it goes on and on the common link is that we won these games and we did so with Walcott, Ozil and Sanchez and Iwobi.

    That is a winning formula, the only componant that started to under perform was Iwobi who looked out of his depth against spuds, so understandably Wenger changed it.

    He brought in Ramsey on the left who, as I said above offers a bit more defense although not much. The remaining three players: Ozil, Sanchez and Walcott still constitute what rightly should still be described as plan A and a tried and tested winning formula — it didn’t work, sometimes they don’t, no manager gets it right every time but fortunately Ramsey was on the pitch and was able to swap with Coquelin, The Welshman then drove the whole thing forward and what happened — we got a point.

    Am I happy about Ramsey playing on the left wing? No I am not, I would have preferred Ramsey on the right and Walcott on the bench.

    But hey ho we all get them right with the use of hind sight.

  24. fred1266 says:

    He brought us a FA cup so Wenger knows he can score anytime

  25. RC78 says:

    I really think that we need to play Ramsey where he belongs – in the middle of the park.

    In a 4-3-1-2: My starting XI with all fit players:
    Cech – Bellerin, Mustafi, Kos, Monreal – Ramsey, Xhaka, Santi- Ozil – Walcott, Sanchez

    In a 4-2-3-1 – he has to make way
    Cech – Bellerin, Mustafi, Kos, Monreal – Coquelin, Cazorla – Walcott, Ozil, Sanchez – Giroud

  26. Big Raddy says:

    Also Iwobi had been away with Nigeria and played in a victory over Algeria.

    He needed a rest.

  27. Big Raddy says:

    RC & TA. Good to see you both back now we can discuss football!

  28. LB
    You ask @10.14 what was Theo’s excuse?

    Easy. His wife was expecting a baby to be delivered quite possibly when the game was being played. Arsene had agreed that if/when the news came that the baby was “on the way” Theo would be excused footy duty (subbed) and Theo would also be on the way – to the hospital.

    This is what was discussed by the commentator(s) during the game. And I’m flabbergasted therefore that Arsene selected Theo to start. The Ox should have started and Theo should have been where his mind (imo) quite clearly was – with his wife.

    Alan Shearer is absolutely correct to question Ozil’s performance above all others.
    Big Raddy is also (almost) correct @9.27 (1st post) when saying the entire team was poor. Almost BR, because Cech was faultless.

  29. LB says:

    Good comment Big Al.

    I had forgot about Theo being preoccupied which as you say is even more reason to have left him at home.

  30. And I forgot to thank you for the post.
    Cheers LB.

  31. Red Arnie says:

    Nice observation Big Al. 🙂 yes Cech was excellent. and so was Everyone’s Favourite Frenchman. But we dont talk about him in positive terms on these shores. 🙂 I thought Jenks was good, tough test but he came out well.

    If such a goal were ever scored by Levandoosky or Miraldo, we would be demanding a transfer. hah! 🙂 what a jump, what timing and poise, what clinical strike. what a cross as well! and how well did Kos divert away taking 3 players with him.

    Brilliant, just brilliant. Orgasmic, even. 🙂

  32. RC78 says:

    Apologies to all for being absent for so long but worload has exploded and home is now focused on parental duties…anyways…

    My two favorite teams are playing Wednesday and I hope for a good game 🙂

    Can we talk about our bench for a second:

    Ospina – Jenkinson, BFG, Gabs, Gibbs – Ox, El Neny, Xhaka or Coquelin, Iwobi – Wellbeck, Giroud

    I think we have the deepest bench in years and I am very happy to see that Ospina, Xhaka, Iwobi, Ox and Giroud are really pushing for a first team berth. I would say that our FB still are weak but from mid up front, we are covered. The only addition that I would like to see is a player with an X-factor like Ben Arfa or Ilicic

  33. StewD0G says:


    I am struggling to see your obssession with seem to be advocating wenger’s square peg round hole philosophy. Yes Iwobi wasn’t great against Spurs but he is much more probing than Ramsey and plays incisive passes that ramsey can’t do..Ramsey is too slow and ponderous in moving the ball..he could be effective playing where ozil plays but he will never play in front of him…Ramsey needs to move on, he could be good somewhere else but not at Arsenal… i really hope wenger doesn’t mess the team up tomorrow but i fully expect him to.. what the team should be for tomorrow; Cech Gibbs Koscielny Mustafi Jenkinson Xhaka Coquelin Iwobi Ozil Walcott Sanchez but this will be the team he goes with; Ospina Monreal Koscielny Mustafi Jenkinson Coquelin Ramsey Sanchez Ozil Walcott Giroud …he loves the welsh fool!

  34. Pony Eye says:

    So what’s the result from these several post mortems? Our star started waning since Santi got injured. Apart from what he directly contributes, Santi simply makes everybody play better particularly our Ozil and our Coq. Against Manu Ramsey was poor. So was Walcott, Ozil and everybody else.

    Since the absence of Santi, the only comfortable score line we’ve had was the 4-1 Sunderland away win and it became comfortable only with the introduction of Giroud.

    Sanchez as #9 without Santi does not work. Without Santi, Giroud as #9 works for the team.

    The current problem is with the bottle and not with the content.

  35. StewD0G says:

    Big Raddy

    Don’t talk about iwobi having a rest when wenger insists on playing our best player who has a hamstring tear..there is no excuse..wenger is tactically clueless

  36. StewD0G says:

    Pony eye,

    Agree that we have missed santi so why the heck does he start elneny over xhaka then? Why does he let wilshere go on loan? Ask yourself that…also u guys give walcott so much stick but he is a lot more productive than ramsey

  37. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi BR, yeah the real footie can now begin, all the way till March when the next interlull takes place.

    ‘Wenger is tactically clueless’ …. they still exist! 😆

  38. Big Raddy says:

    Stew dog. Do two wrong makes a right?

    Wilshere on loan was necessary both for AFC and Wilshere.

    Chaka not starting? Your idea is as good as mine!

  39. TotalArsenal says:

    After Cech, Elneny was the second best Arsenal player in the game. If you did not see that then guess who is the tactically clueless?!

  40. StewD0G says:

    Wenger is most overrated and overpaid manager in history of football..fact!

  41. fred1266 says:

    Giroud always seems to score goals when he not considered the number one, he did it last season when we was playing theo at striker

  42. StewD0G says:

    Total Arsenal

    ‘Elneny was best player after cech’ just fell off my seat 😂😂😂😂 what game were you watching? He was useless

  43. fred1266 says:

    Stew you really thought Wilshire would have made a difference

  44. LB says:


    I think what happened was the first twenty minutes of the Ludogorets game scared Wenger and fearing another possible two down scenario he changed, so rather than a Coquelin — Xhaka pairing, he opted for Coquelin and Elneny which made sense. Those two can break up play.

    Having done that they have to move it on to the play makers, Ramsey on the left wing was lost, Walcott lost possession pretty much every time he got the ball which leaves Ozil and Sanchez.

    However, they cannot do the whole thing on their own. They need help.
    When Ramsey moved back to a familiar position we looked like a potent force and his determination to drive us forward played a part in the equaliser.

    It is not an obsession with Ramsey it is simply today’s topic of conversation.

  45. StewD0G says:


    Your assessment on walcott limiting effectiveness of Ozil and Sanchez is complete rubbish..he only once got the ball in behind which was in the 2nd half…other than that he was picking the ball up on the halfway line and had absolutely no passing options..we were completely nullified in midfield as coquelin and elneny were unable to dictate position..we had no iwobi getting into pockets between the lines..ramsey can’t make those movements..and no midfielder capable of playing quickly and accurately into ozil and first half sanchez failed to find walcott a number of times with some give walcott a break..its too simpleminded to scapegoat him when he has delivered consistently so far this season

  46. LB says:


    I agree that Walcott has delivered, and delivered well so far but he seems to have come up short again in the big games, the games when he was really needed. spuds, manu?

    If you accept that close control is the most important currency in football (think Messi) then you will start to see why I have come to this view.

    People criticism Walcott for not having a football brain which I disagree with, he is clearly aware of what is needed he just can’t deliver it because, yet again in my opinion, his lack of close control.

  47. LB says:

    And finally some good news: Bellerin has signed a new long term deal, well done Hector.

  48. fred1266 says:

    Walcott came through out against City, last season, the whole side didn’t come to play against spurs and ManU

  49. fred1266 says:

    Alexis your next sign the things

  50. TotalArsenal says:

    MU had five shots on target; had not Elneny played next to Coq but Rambo, Xhaka or (injured) Santi, we would have lost the game. Simples. So crawl back on your chair Stew and smell the coffee.

  51. TotalArsenal says:

    The one thing Wenger has learned when playing against a Maureen team is to avoid taking the attacking initiative and leave ourselves open to counter attacks. JM very much hoped Wenger would come out and attack and he played the sort of players who could have hurt us if Wenger had been adventurous/ stupid enough to do so. So playing the solid Elneny next to Coq was tactically sound and it worked well until the goal. After that Wenger made tactical adjustments that turned a six-pointer for MU into a draw, so once again chapeau to him.

    Alexis lacked one or two gears and did not have the usual energy to really turn our attack into the machine we know it can be. On top of that our mid-wingers where not as effective as usual and Ozil was crowded out by MU midfielders and our own attackers… So no blame for him whatsoever.

    I say it again, this was an ugly but very important draw and I expect Wenger to play the same 11 on Wednesday.

  52. mickydidit89 says:

    Fantastic LB
    Great topic and superb title that’s produced lively footballing chat.
    Superb to see so many new contributors
    Well played

  53. LB says:

    Thanks Micky

    Top comment TA, very insightful.

  54. chas says:

    “It is not an obsession with Ramsey it is simply today’s topic of conversation.”

    And what a fine topic of conversation it is.
    Well bowled, LB.
    Guaranteed to pull in a few varied comments as it’s the talk of the Arsenal blogosphere.

    The conversation just about managed to stay on the side of not being rude (partly becaiuse I wasn’t here 🙂 ).

    Here’s Aaron’s game highlights…….

  55. chas says:

    and this……

  56. Big Raddy says:

    2016’s best GIF

  57. Red Arnie says:

    ha ha ha ha. nice ones Chas. 🙂 and nice topic of conversation indeed, LB. 🙂

    Chas. can we get a slo-mo of Giro’s high jump and header, please. 🙂

  58. RockyLives says:

    Excellent LB!

    I share your sentiments regarding Ramsey (although we part ways when it comes to Theo, who I think has been playing well this season and is one of our best finishers when he gets the chance).

    The people who criticise Ramsey for losing possession never seem to notice the same fault in Sanchez. Obviously Sanchez gives us explosiveness and goals, but often when the team is not clicking he gives the ball away far too cheaply on too many occasions.

    Chas – love the Aaron/Maureen clip 😀

  59. Big Raddy says:

    chas. After today’s debacle in India please do not mention bowling

  60. Red Arnie says:

    potential useless filler in nuts

  61. Red Arnie says:

    Raddy. The debacle was day before yesterday, not today

  62. Red Arnie says:

    anyone knows a good place to watch the game Weds in Frankfurt?

  63. Big Raddy says:

    True Arnie. The whole of this test has been painful.

    Must be a sports bar in Frankfurt.

  64. Red Arnie says:

    There seems to be an Irish pub in Hbf. Cannot fild anything else, have to look harder.

  65. Rasp says:

    Great comment provoking post LB … as usual you’ve rattled a few cages 🙂

    My tuppence worth is this …….

    No player can be viewed in isolation, their performance and efficacy is affected by their position and the interaction with the players around them.

    It is possible for players in certain positions to perform to a very high standard and not be noticed – Gilberto

    Having said all that, great players have the ability to change games and perform when it really matters.

    I don’t think Ramsey will be as influential in the current Arsenal team as he was when he played for Wales in the EC. For them he is the main man in midfield, he pulls the strings and has the freedom to roam – that won’t happen for Arsenal.

    Who would I prefer Santi or Ramsey … Santi
    Who would I prefer as DM, Xhaka or Ramsey …. Xhaka
    Is Ramsey effective wide left or wide right …… neither are his best position.

    He looked at his best for us a couple of seasons ago when we had key midfield injuries and before Ozil joined.

    Ramsey would be a fantastic player running the midfield for probably half the teams in the EPL … but not at Arsenal IMHO.

  66. Red Arnie says:

    ta Chas, 🙂 Irish Pub Bornheim sounds interesting. my Gooner friend Jim and I will probably be there. Jim is a long time fan and season ticket holder. follows AA regularly but to the best of my knowledge does not comment.

  67. chas says:

  68. chas says:

  69. chas says:

  70. Big Raddy says:

    Morning All,

    Fine days comments drawn by a quality post. Looking forward to the mighty FCK taking on Porto tonight.

  71. chas says:


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