I always loved the final home game of the season, the opportunity to say goodbye to the players leaving, the joy of saying goodbye to some of the numbskull season ticket holders who sat around me,  a chance to thank the players for their season’s work and today, to give a noisy and grateful farewell to Aaron Ramsey and Danny Welbeck, two of my favourite players


Of course, the season’s work is hardly done. Given my expectations at the start of the campaign it is a wonderful surprise that we are still in contention for 2 major prizes. I thought we would struggle to finish 7th! Win today and our next 3 (hopefully) away fixtures and this has been a very successful year.

How will Brighton respond following the relief they must feel after Cardiff’s loss and subsequent relegation. Will they simply down tools and think of the beach or will the relief allow them to play with freedom? Given their driven manager, Chris Wagnerton, I expect the latter. They will be out to impress.


Mr. Emery has a difficult decisions to make. Does he play his best available 11 or use second stringers ahead of the midweek Valencia game? Despite my lack of confidence in certain players – Elneny in particular – I would prioritise Valencia.

Given the long term injury to Welbz it is not possible to rest both our POTS and PEA, I expect PEA to start, though I am usually wrong.

Leno will start, so too Mustafi, and Monreal. Kos needs a rest so we could see Mavropanos start. Dare Mr Emery play the Elneny/Douzi  midfield axis again? Iwobi is a certain starter and perhaps Mhki. Ozil as well.

Lose and we finish 6th. Win and we have a chance of Top 4.






61 Responses to IMO A MWG

  1. TotalArsenal says:

    Cheers Raddy, yes final game of the season is special and luckily there is still something to play for today. It would be wrong to do anything else but put our best/fittest team up and try and get three points v Brighton. There is a strong chance of a top four finish if we win today and let’s face it, this season has not been about the (quality and enjoyment of the) journey but all about achieving CL football – the financial holy grail of football and only real objective given to the manager these days. So it would be silly not to go for a win and maximise our opportunities to reach that goal. There is also a real possibility of the Spuds finishing sixth after all, as the Toffees are in top form and will want another Top-Six scalp, no doubt. But more than anything, the supporters deserve a show and win after the poor CP home game, and we need a happy Sue on the blog. 😉

  2. chas says:

    Cheers, BR.

    I’d imagine the chosen team will be a mixture of our best team and a complete second string selection.

    Kos needs a rest as he’s nearly a pensioner.
    The strikers looked well up for it the other night, so maybe they’ll both be keen to play.

    Giving the Terrier an hours rest the other night appeared to pay dividends, so maybe Xhaka and Guendouzi to start again? Then again, maybe Elneny will be given another chance.

    I’ve really no idea to tell the truth.

    Sneak 3 points with no injuries and I’ll be more than happy.

    Up The Arse.

  3. John Mathews legend says:

    I’m with TA on this, play the best/fittest possible.
    We’re in with a shout for knocking the spuds out of the top 4..C’mon!

  4. fred1266 says:

    I don’t like elneny but I actually think he can play against Brighton

    Also give jenkinson a go also

  5. GunnerN5 says:

    Thank you for all of your PM’s Raddy, they are the first thing I look for on match day.

    As a kid the last home game of the season was a sad event, Avenell Road and the surrounding N5 streets went quiet for the summer.

    I distinctly remember my grandfather cussing as he would be without his income for “looking after” cars parked along Stavordale Road during the game. I still remember what he said to the drivers as they got out of their cars “Give me a bob mate and I’ll make sure nothing happens to your car” – the inference being that if he didn’t get a bob something would happen to their car.

    However as soon as the street was full he would pop into the Drayton Park for a pint and then dash up to Highbury Stadium to watch the game – not the cars.

  6. GoonerB says:

    Thanks Raddy

    I’m with TA and John Mathews; strongest team in our strongest system. We actually have more of a cushion in the EL and Brighton are a tough nut to crack.

    I wonder if UE will wait to see the Chav’s result before fully deciding. If they drop points then the strongest line up is a must. Probably our biggest worry would be an injury to either AMN or Koli. We don’t have suitable wing back cover right now, and only seem to play well currently in a WB system.

  7. allezkev says:

    Good preview.

    Are the financial rewards of being in the Champions League all that they’re cracked up to be?

    If Arsenal win the Europa, so I’ve heard, then we’ll earn as much as reaching the last 16 in the Champions League, which is where Arsenal have exited that competition quite regularly in recent years.

  8. TotalArsenal says:

    “The two Manchester clubs are the only two valued at more than £2bn in the study for the 2017-18 season.
    Spurs (£1.837bn), Liverpool (£1.615bn) and Chelsea (£1.615bn) have seen big rises but Arsenal dropped to £1.368bn without Champions League football.”

    It seems to make a big difference, Kev. For more details see:

  9. Aaron says:

    No injuries, no jenks, no eleny and ozil together, Mav in, Kos out, and the team picks itself. If the Arsenal can get a lead sub out 3, and rest our forwards, Xhaka and whomever else is in the red.

  10. fred1266 says:

  11. RA says:

    IMO A MWG 2

    A lovely pre-match Post, Raddish.

    Does anyone think that deliberate thought is given to whether we field the best team?

    If Unai does select players, depending on what competitions we are still in, it does not seem to make much, if any, difference.

  12. RA says:

    I hope the lads do not let Sue down — I assume she has gone to the game with her friends — a good crew – Sue, Pugh and Barney McGrue. 🤪

  13. allezkev says:

    Interesting stats those TA,
    Liverpool in CL worth the same as Chelsea out CL.

  14. Sue says:

    TA.. I was happy.. until I saw Lichtsteiner’a name on the team sheet, oh sweet Jesus 😫😫
    (thank you btw 🙂)

    RA.. 😂😂 just Pugh actually 😜


  15. RA says:


    The share out for the CL qualifiers is based on TV sponsorship each year.

    The 32 teams participating in this Champions League knockout stages will have the chance to win a lot of money.

    Participation will guarantee €15m and then they get paid €2.7m for each win, and €1m for a draw in the knockout part — so each club winning a maximum of 6 wins would get €16m — and that equals €31m, and then, up to €51m for getting through to round 16 reaching and each round after that and then winning the final — so a total of €82m. Not bad.

    Someone will say that is unlikely for Arsenal, But if you are in it – you could win it.

    Certainly worth qualifying financially.

  16. Big Raddy says:

    Shame the Chavs won 😦 but MU didn’t let us down. They must be thrilled with the contract for the Norwegian chap.Seems like a decent bloke but so did David Cameron.

  17. RA says:

    The team:

    Shirt Nimber first:-

    Ozil (c)

  18. RA says:

    Was his real name David Cameronwagner, Raddy?

  19. allezkev says:

    Thanks Red, as far the CL is concerned, I am mostly supporting Ajax…

  20. RA says:

    Well, Xhaka has started out with his usual aplomb.

    Two passes, neither near a teammate.

  21. RA says:

    Me, too, AK! 😁

  22. RA says:

    Yessss — I heard you and Pugh (but not Barney McGrue) cheer Sue!!! 1 ; 0 — Yaay!

  23. Big Raddy says:

    Dubious penalty decision but taken with some style.


  24. RA says:

    Sok has a yellow fellow. Not nice.

  25. Big Raddy says:

    Superb dive from Sokratis

  26. fred1266 says:

    Sok has had the most yellow in arsenal history for a season

  27. Aaron says:

    Does the Arsenal ever take a shot anymore?

  28. Big Raddy says:

    Entertaining game. Both keepers busy with the Brighton chap excelling

    Danish tv just told us that Arsenal have been given 6 yellows for diving, the highest in the PL

  29. RA says:

    Well that proves we need to practise more BR so we come up with diving excellence just like the other teams. 😇

  30. fred1266 says:

    Sokratis lol

  31. RA says:

    This freekick for Xhaka about the same distance from which Messi scored — doh! 🤪

  32. RA says:

    Can’t someone else have a go?

    Xhaka 0 from 2 — sheesh. 🥺

  33. RA says:

    Incidentally — I think Smithy has co-commentated OK. 😎

  34. RA says:

    Oh, great — Xhaka fives away a penalty because he is too bloody slow!!!

  35. fred1266 says:

    Typical a guy doesn’t score in 9 games score against us

  36. RA says:

    Wonderful — NOT — 1 : 1


  37. fred1266 says:

    I blame mkhitaryan for that whole bloody play

  38. Big Raddy says:

    FFS. incredibly stupid of Xhaka.

    We have been pants in the second half. Ozil and Mhiki completely anonymous. We need subs…. now

  39. Big Raddy says:

    Fred. Me too and now Taylor gives Licht a yellow for nothing. Then doesn’t give one to Brighton player who scythed down Terrier.

    Another crap referee

  40. fred1266 says:

    Mkhitaryan is a disgrace he has done nothing whole game

  41. fred1266 says:

    Well he did give us a soft penalty so not blaming the ref today

  42. RA says:

    Thank goodness there are 3 subs coming on.

  43. RA says:

    Seems to be some mistake? Eddie NKetiah has not come on. Just Iwobi and two defenders when we need to win.

    What is Unai doing?

  44. Aaron says:

    Can’t blame the ref for today at all…
    Last 15 minutes a little urgency here.

    But, if the Arsenal do not win today, Emery will be under pressure to win the Europa.
    Reason I say this is our away form has not improved in the least. Emery has proven he does not do well away from home-look it up, went an entire season with Valencia not winning away from home.

    This is the worst last 7 games to end the season I have seen in a while.
    Our club and coach should have higher goals than that period, and if the Arsenal do not get back into CL it will be a long slow slide back into top 8.

  45. Gööner In Exile says:

    God we really have players who make poor choices time after time after time, or maybe they just follow instruction. The ball goes wide the ball gets decided the cross gets blocked rinse and repeat. Where is the invention? Where is the attempt to pull players out of position by rotating play by moving it quickly?

    1 from 12 in 4 winnable games is shocking behaviour. We could have confirmed CL football today with 2 wins and a draw from those games, and we would have taken it to the wire with 4 draws.

    And to top it all off the crowd boos on the final whistle and it was half full..great.

  46. Big Raddy says:

    it wasn’t lack of effort. PEA and Laca gave everything as did Terrier.

    We just need better players around them.

    Really disappointed with Ozi who appears to be lacking in confidence and rarely shoots

  47. allezkev says:

    Gotta win up at Turf Moor now or we could finish below Man Utd and have to qualify…

  48. Big Raddy says:

    Kev. Don’t really agree. Where we have to get a result is in Valencia. If we can score , and I believe we will, the we “only” have to beat the Chavs.

    Win or lose at Turf Moor is purely a question of pride. We will beatwhoever we play in the EL qualifiers.

  49. John Mathews legend says:

    BR,if you fancy any tips about different open tunings, dropped D or DADGAD etc…..anything but talk about footie or the @rse right now.

  50. LBG says:

    So shite away and shite at home! Congratulations on making it a worse end of season for us supporters than last year.(and there are still two games to go.
    Never missed an end of season parade before, but you are not worthy of the commitment I make.

  51. jjgsol says:

    The frequent suggestion that UE can be excused because he took over a poor group of players is fatuous and nonsensical.

    4 of the players who started and 5 who finished are UE purchases.

    What you can say is the players he inherited can’t play his way, but that is something else.

    We beat some top teams at home because we stopped them playing, not because we played better. That is UE’s style and, as AW bought in skilful players, a lot of them do not suit the more negative style they are now being asked to play.

    Is that how we want our players to play?

    Does anyone honestly think that we will be able to buy players who, not only can play that way but be successful at it?

    I, for one, do not and anticipate more horrible performances like season.

  52. Aaron says:

    Correction on the above: Sevilla.

    Arsenal have conceded 50 or more goals in consecutive top-flight campaigns for the first time since 1982-83 and 1983-84.

    Like NFL draft day: who will the Arsenal draft, pick, choose, select, buy or trade for? Another midfielder of course……

  53. Sue says:

    Awful result (Glenn Murray, really??)
    Granit Xhaka – words fail me!
    After the match, watching Ramsey pick up his gift from the club & seeing him cry, brought tears to my eyes!! Was lush hearing everyone (myself included) sing “Aaron Ramsey we want you to stay & there’s only one Aaron Ramsey” 😢😢 thanks Aaron – you’ve been magnificent, I will miss you!
    Also thanks to Cech & Dat guy Welbz 👏

  54. Big Raddy says:

    Sue.wish I had been there

  55. Sue says:

    BR.. I know everyone was gutted about the result, but I honestly couldn’t believe how many people left at the final whistle… 11 years is a long time to play at one club.. and I thought everyone would stay behind to show Ramsey some gratitude & love!
    Big shout out to the fans who did 👍

  56. allezkev says:

    BR, yes, I agree, I think we will do a job in Valencia (we certainly owe them) and then hopefully we’ll win the bloody thing in Baku, but the thing about Turf Moor isn’t really pride imo, it’s more about not having the worse case scenario of having a Europa qualifier slap bang in the middle of pre season and all the delights that can bring.

  57. chas says:


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