Lacazette to find the back of the net …………

Anyone who is thinking of watching this game from behind the sofa should not – in my mind – be branded a scaredycat. I think it’s fair to say that stats and predictions go out the window in these early days of Arsenal’s New Dawn under Mikel Arteta.

With the win against Man U we saw Arteta’s plan in action. We were pressing all over the pitch, lots of energy, quick passing and an early goal. Arteta has talked about getting the energy levels up but this takes time. To score a couple of early goals must be high on his wish list but not having to ‘shout a lot’ at his players at half time must also be.

There was a complacency about the first half against Leeds that’s going to take a while to shake off. So, is the short trip to Crystal Palace, who sit above us in the table going to get their collective juices flowing? I hope so, although traditionally, we really don’t like early kick offs.

Roy Hodgson is doing great things with this Palace team and Wilfrid Saha will have a point to prove, as, if things had gone better for him he would have been lining up for us today. His stats versus Pepe make interesting reading.

Zaha is getting the opportunity to make more dribbling runs but has had more pitch time than Pepe. This is where we need to be able to release Pepe and let him work his magic. Our goalscoring has been pretty pants so far this season but I’m hopeful that with hard work Arteta can rectify this.

So, how will we line up today? Sokratis has been a monster lately and I’m loving how he plays like a warrior. Luiz has discovered that he loves playing for us and he quite likes being a defender too. Our problems are that our injuries  to Bellerin and Tierney that have forced other players into those positions. Arteta’s plan to allow the left-backs Kolasinac or Saka to be part of the attack have been fruitful and for Ainsley Maitland-Niles to move into the midfield have hopefully kept him happy too.

Xhaka has been persuaded to stay and Torreira is finally being allowed to do a great job in front of the defence. What’s not to like?

Up front we can look forward to the mouthwatering proposition of Ozil, Pepe, Aubameyang and Lacazette. Exciting huh? Maybe Lacazette has left his goal scoring boots somewhere in South London and he’s picking them up on the way.


AMN   Sokratis   Luiz   Kolasinac

Torreira  Xhaka


Pepe   Lacazette   Aubameyang

Enjoy the game all …………..



71 Responses to Lacazette to find the back of the net …………

  1. Sue says:

    Nice one, Peaches!
    I’m at work till 1 😬, so have left strict instructions to pause it 😀
    I reckon your line up will be spot on… haven’t a scooby what the score will be though.
    They’ve got injury concerns and a suspension, so hopefully that’ll work to our advantage.

    Aww Zaha.. if only, hey?!! COYG

  2. RockyLives says:

    Nice pre-match Peaches

    It’s definitely got me in the mood.

    The last away game I went to was at Palace when we lost 0-3 in 2017. It was a miserable night, the travelling fans were laying into Wenger and the players and it really felt like we were a club in freefall.

    Unfortunately we subsequently fell even further under Emery, but there are renewed signs of hope now.

    Perhaps Arteta’s half time rocket in the Leeds game will have jolted some of the players out of their tendency to sink into complacency. We’ll see.

    But the change of mood means I’m excited about the opportunities this game offers rather than worrying about the perils it holds.

  3. RockyLives says:

    I’d like to offer my own version of our probable starting 11, but it would be exactly the same as yours, Peaches.

    10% of me thinks Arteta might start Nelson ahead of Pepe, but I suspect the line-up will be as you’ve laid out.

  4. RockyLives says:

    On the Zaha-Pepe thing, Wilf has scored 3 goals in 22 games this season. Pepe has scored 5 in 13.

    Obviously there’s more to a player’s contribution than scoring goals, but based on those figures I know which of the two I’d rather have, and it’s not Zaha.

    Plus Pepe hasn’t really got into his stride yet – there’ll be much more to come from him.

  5. Sue says:

    Rocky.. don’t get me wrong, I do like Pepe and I’m glad he’s ours, but… I have a little soft spot for Wilf 🙂

  6. RockyLives says:

    If I have one niggling doubt, it’s that our players have consistently shown their inconsistency, and an away London derby is exactly the sort of fixture where they could slip back into bad habits.

    Hopefully they’re beginning to realise that Arteta won’t accept a drop in standards.

  7. RockyLives says:

    I have a soft spot for the mere fact that he’s called “Wilfred”. It feels like he should be turning out in 1930s baggy shorts and a flat cap.

  8. RockyLives says:

    This is the team Wilfred should be playing in:

  9. Sue says:

    Sorry to disappoint you, Rocky… it’s Wilfried 😀
    Love the clip, and how they run… did you run like that back in the day?! 😜😄

  10. RockyLives says:

    Centre half, Sue. Running wasn’t really my thing.

    And I’m sticking with Wilfred. He can’t help the fact that there was a typo on his birth certificate.

  11. RA says:

    Good Morning, Dudes,

    An excellent pre-Match, Queen Peaches, thank you.
    It nicely sets up AAers for a good match.

    Hopefully you will also issue instructions to your wooden soldiers to immediately arrest the Sue, Gooner B and that bloody camel for not helping you out with this mornings essay!!

    Apart from that, all is well here as it hopefully is for your good self. 😳

    I don’t know why I love the Gunners but I do-o-o-o – Yaay.

  12. Sue says:

    😂 Nice one, Rocky!!

  13. Gööner In Exile says:

    Nice comparison on Zaha and Pepe, often feel it’s hard to judge playing in different quality of team, but maybe a sign of how far we’ve got to go that I’m actually wondering whether Arsenal players are as good as Palace players 😂

    I’ve just come back from freezing my proverbials off on a windswept touchline, hope the Arsenal shoreline is better.

  14. Sue says:

    Spot on team, Peaches 👍 Nice line up 😉
    Come on Arsenal, let’s do this 👊

  15. Rasp says:

    Great work peaches, thank you.

    I’m just about to sit on my sofa – not behind it 🙂

    I’d take Pepe over Saha. Saha’s physical presence is greater, b ut Pepe outscores him in everyy other aspect .. let’s hope he outscores hime today.

    ASrsenal to win 3:1 – although another clean sheet would be preferable … and no injkuries.

  16. RockyLives says:

    Amen Rasp – especially no more injuries to defenders please, gods of football.

  17. RockyLives says:


    Lovely set up by Ozil and Laca.

    Henry-esque finish from Auba.

  18. VP says:

    down the middle, Ozil, Laca, Pea and goal

  19. VP says:

    based on the first 12 minutes I will say 4:0 to the gunners

  20. RockyLives says:


  21. RockyLives says:

    The more you see of Torreira playing in his preferred role the more mystifying it is that Emery refused to play him there.

  22. RockyLives says:

    Not only does he screen the defence, he’s also very good at bringing the ball forward and getting our attacks going.

  23. VP says:

    how does Ayew not have a yellow yet

  24. Rasp says:

    I don’t understand why Palace aren’t putting pressure on the ball … they’re playing right into our hands. Great start from our guys so far.

  25. Rasp says:

    There’s a yellow card coming up any moment.

  26. RockyLives says:

    Almost certainly for Xhaka I would guess.

  27. Rasp says:

    Good to see us absorbing pressure … but our passing has lost its edge since they started closing us down. We need to get the game back under our control

  28. LBG says:

    A half of two halfs. Another rocket required Mikel.

  29. RockyLives says:

    Palace had to come back at us a bit. We did pretty well to weather it.

    Hopefully we can reassert control here in the second half.

  30. RockyLives says:

    Torreira off? Oh bolleaux.

    But Douzi and Xhaka did OK in the second half we Leeds

  31. VP says:

    Hi Rocky
    I’ve calmed down and thought about it a bit more and I’ve decided to revise my prediction. I now say 2:1 win to the gunners but hoping for Rasp’s 3:1

  32. RockyLives says:


  33. RA says:

    Peculiar game.

    Beautiful goal to go 0 : 1 up and then we revert back to that playing out of the penalty area crap, allowing Palace the chance to go on the attack.

    We have not done any pressing. What’s going on?

    This is reminiscent of the Emery era – hope it does not end the way so many ‘Emery’ games did.

  34. RA says:

    Meyer is milking the foul by going down again — red card ??

  35. fred1266 says:

    Let’s get the 10 man bounce

  36. RockyLives says:

    Bit of a mistimed challenge – not a red card.

    Fecked by VAR again.

  37. RockyLives says:

    Good move to take Ozil off. 10 men against a very physical team is not the place for our Mesut.

  38. RockyLives says:

    It’s times like this when we miss a Giroud type of player, someone we can go long to.

  39. VP says:

    with Martinelli on, I have confidence
    very smart Arteta, very smart

  40. Sue says:

    What a goal to concede… lost Torreira… now Auba…. urgh….. ☹

  41. VP says:

    mate, maitland is playing well

  42. Sue says:

    Auba will miss Chelsea away 😭

  43. LBG says:

    Excessive force by new (crap) rules.
    Love Pepe, but not ready. Martinelli should be starting every game unless he needs rest occasionally.

  44. LBG says:

    The rollercoaster ride of luck we have had so often in the last few years as Arse fans!
    Ayiew should have been off in first half, as well.

  45. VP says:

    I must say, Luiz taking the ball to have the ref reset it was brilliant.
    LBG I agree on Ayew and dislike him

  46. VP says:

    thank you for the post Peaches and I bid everyone a good morning. I’m off to sleep

  47. Sue says:

    Sleep well, VP!

  48. Sue says:

    I’m very frustrated and a little moody right now!
    Yes, we could’ve ended up with nothing, but to take the lead and concede in the manner we did, feels like a loss to me!
    I just hope Torreira will be ok! Don’t wanna be without him as well as Auba!
    Jordan Ayew – bloody hell, he probably won’t score again this season… and even then he needed a massive deflection 🙄
    Oh why did Pepe have to hit the post 😡
    Not a great start to the footballing weekend…. sigh……

  49. RC78 says:

    Frustrated that we didn’t win but overall the team is showing good attitude and interesting football especially in the first half today. Didn’t defend well on the conceded goals but otherwise, I like Arteta s team

  50. Oh dear, that didn’t turn out very well did it. I missed the first half but I will watch it in while.

    What happened to Torreira?

    Bloody VAR, I hate it. So many harsh tackles against our players never get revisited!!!!! Poor Auba, he looked gutted ☹️ might get to see more of Martinelli though 😁

    Rocky has offered a write-up unless someone else wants it?

  51. RockyLives says:

    On reflection, the red card was a disgrace.

    Auba is the least dirty player on the pitch. He mistimed a tackle and unintentionally hurt the Palace player.

    To punish that with a red and a likely three match ban is just unfair when you see dirty players getting away with dirty fouls all game long.

    Torreira was kicked off the park in the first half without any punishment for the offenders.

    I am disgusted.

    And as for VAR? You can take it and shove it where the sun don’t shine (N17) as far as I’m concerned.

  52. LBG says:

    Hi again Rocky
    I think perhaps there should be three levels of red card. By the current rules, I would have to have sent him off, but with a red1 ie one match ban. A red2 would be a Shawcross and a two match ban, and a red3 a Keane versus I think Harland.
    Wonder if Aubang’s foul had done the same damage as Shawcross whether there would be any debate.

  53. RockyLives says:

    Thanks LBG

    I’m not disputing the interpretation of the rules (it seems the rules are the culprit here, not the refs).

    Good points about degrees of red card.

    Some rules have unforeseen consequences. This happened when they brought in the rule that fouling an attacker in the penalty area (and denying a goal scoring opportunity) was an automatic red card (as well as a pen).

    In practise it meant that teams were sometimes being excessively punished for a minor trip.

    A slightly mistimed tackle in the box which tripped up a striker could lead to: Penalty; 10 men for rest of the game; 3 match ban for the offender.

    The authorities eventually changed this by removing the insistence on a compulsory red card.

    I suspect this new interpretation of excessive force will end up being watered down in the same way.

  54. RA says:

    Rocky @ 4:07

    Totally agree.

    I don’t really have a problem with the VAR technology — but I do have a problem with the ridiculous rules and the interpretation of them — and VAR should only be used when the referee asks for advice – not unwanted interference from a plank wanting to make a name for himself.

  55. Sue says:

    What annoyed me was Ayew… all his fouls went unmentioned, yet Xhaka was slated over and over again against Leeds!! And he had 3 less!!
    Ayew scored against us home and away, first Palace player to manage this since 1972 🙄

  56. RA says:


    The pint sized midfield enforcer, Torreira, was sneakily hacked down throughout the 1st half, and subbed because he was injured.

  57. Sue says:

    Yes it was mistimed, and Auba is far from a dirty sod… but it did look nasty… and I can’t help but think if that’d been done to any of our players, I’d have called for his head!
    I am gutted though… he looked devastated.. and we really will miss him.
    At least Laca won’t miss Sheff Utd, for his 5th yellow… as the reset date was Dec 31st?

  58. RA says:


    I understand what Rocky said — Auba is a forward and like most of them he is no great shakes at defending/tackling – but he is the least offensive player on our team roster – one dodgy tackle with no real force, and off he goes. A yellow card would have been enough, which is what the ref originally gave.

    But like you, when I saw the slowed down replays of the foul, I would have been demanding retribution too, if it had happened to one of our players.
    C’est la vie.

  59. RA says:

    I did learn something about VAR decisions I did not know – not that it has been confirmed.

    The TV ref advising the commentators/viewers said that he thought the on-field ref was correct in awarding a yellow for Auba’s tackle, and gave the reason that supported that decision.

    When the VAR pillock ruled it was a red he changed his mind and agreed the VAR ref was correct instead.

    He then went on to say, the VAR ref rules for those sort of tackles was to watch the tackle at ‘normal’ speed, not the slowed down version we all saw.

    In effect, he (the VAR ref) simply over-ruled the on-field ref’s yellow card opinion because his opinion was different, and a red card was needed — that is utterly ridiculous, and has nothing much to do with VAR — it is just interference.

  60. LBG says:

    Expressed my view on the tackle and what had to be done with rule and VAR, but the two evident facts are 1. The changed rules on offside, handball ×2 and excessive force are what is dramatically wrong with our favourite game and 2. VAR is the worse thing EVER introduced into our game, is spoiling it completely, bringing to the forefront even more the idiots in the black and the even worse idiots sitting in a room miles away from what is going on and where we are paying good money to be “entertained.”

  61. fred1266 says:

    I think in those decisions probably the on field ref should use the tv so they can visit themselves

  62. RockyLives says:

    RA @5.33
    Well spotted. It’s daft.

  63. oz gunner says:

    Definitely a red in my opinion. We’d be all furious if that was done to Auba. Reckless and it could easily have broken his ankle.

    Disappointing to be let down by a deflection and a reckless challenge.

  64. RockyLives says:

    Report is in drafts.

  65. LBG says:

    Some are predicting how much we will lose without Aubang. I think it could be the making of Martinelli!

  66. fred1266 says:

    Would prefer saka over martinelli

  67. VP says:

    Prefer Martinelli over Saka 🙂

  68. RockyLives says:

    Saka and Martinelli are both good options and we’re lucky to have them.

    From what I’ve seen Martinelli may have a higher ceiling and could be a central striker. Saka looks like a talented wide player.

  69. RC78 says:

    Martinelli, Ozil, Pepe – Laca

    Let s hope Torreira is OK… If not, we need to also dive into the market for a DM. Take Diop and Rice from West Ham? Not sure Moyes would like that… Lol

  70. RockyLives says:

    New Post…

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