Willock Blows Away The Molde

A slightly strange game against Molde, in that we started very cautiously, perhaps because Molde shared the top of the Europa table with us, and yet, in the end we had a pretty comfortable win. How so?

We experienced yet another game where we misfired more that we would want in the attack.

Some of that involved bad luck with the referee ruling out a good goal for Eddie, which VAR, yes that VAR, would probably have given him the thumbs up.

But VAR is not available in the group stages — and will only come into play in the knockout stages — go figure.

But Lady Luck smiled on us with two very nice own goals from Molde. Umm, did I mention that we had gone down 0 : 1 at that stage, after some woeful defending and Leno seeming to have gone to sleep.

Willock, and Pepe put the icing on the cake late in the game and ‘hey presto’ one more win and we will qualify for the knockout stages. Then we get to bring on the kids.

For those who watch every game possible, the improving Joe Willock is very eye catching, and like in our last game, he inspired the team to keep trying harder and… they did. Good lad.

We were frustrated, both the fans and the team by having a lot of pressure on Molde but missing each chance at a goal until the first own goal just before half time. We are still missing a top creative talent in the team, but another own goal made the team relax and the game simply slipped into our hands, with the lads laughing and hugging each other.

We cannot help but be pleased, but we must ensure this ‘second team’ gets going from the off, in the future or laughter could easily become tears.

Leno 6
Luiz 6
Mustafi 6
Xhaka 6
Ceb 6
Kola 6
Pepe 6
Willian 6
Eddie 6
Willock 8



20 Responses to Willock Blows Away The Molde

  1. Pete the Thirst says:

    Willock was the class act on the pitch last night. He’s full of running and definitely offers something different to what we have in the first 11.

    Like Glenda said last night I’m not sure how he gets in the starting line up. Maybe when Arteta switches to a back 4 he could puch for a place in the midfield.

  2. LBG says:

    Sorry RA, I find your and a “pundits”, criticism last night of Leno for the first goal, significantly unfair.
    Last night’s “expert” suggested “Leno should never be pumping the ball long to Eddie in the centre forward position, as he does not have the ability to hold the ball up ( like Laca)”.
    What rubbish to start with, and where is the criticism of Dani and X totally out of position, which allowed the easy pass to the scorer. Whose shot was not exactly puff ball.

    Apart from that agree with every word of your post. Have a great day AAers.

  3. LB says:

    No Jacket rating……………….?

  4. LB says:

    Thanks for the read RA.

  5. Pete the Thirst says:

    I saw the Any Vines post (Chas & Duck). Looks like some healthy consumption on the way to the games. Well played.

    Is it true what RA says that you are the Sheriff of Nottingham? Then you must have heard of Robin Hood’s dyslexic side-kick Triar F@ck

    Boom Boom

  6. RockyLives says:

    Nice one Redders.

    Willock’s energy and determination were crucial to both the “own goals” – they certainly wouldn’t have happened without him.

    But here’s a question for those of you who are more tactically astute than I am (ie, all of you): what position was Willock playing last night?

    As for Leno, I was one of the ones moaning about him kicking long when all our defenders were out of position (there was a huge Kola-shaped hole where the Molde guy scored from), but on reflection that’s unfair. There have been plenty of times in previous games when he’s been dicing with death trying to play it out from the back and I have been yelling “kick it long!”

    As for El Patron’s jacket… I shan’t pass comment on whether I’m for or against, but it had a strangely hypnotic effect. Every time the camera panned to Arteta I found myself transfixed by the thing. Maybe it was meant to distract opposition defenders?

  7. RockyLives says:

    Pete “D

    Is he related to Willy Scarlet?

  8. RockyLives says:

    Or Little Johnson?

  9. RA says:



  10. RA says:


    I cannot argue with you about the Leno thing — other than to reassure you that I rarely listen to the commentators, stone cold idiots, and last night myself and 4 others watched with the sound off.

    Actually, none of them are Arsenal supporters, and I had to use a certain amount of noblesse oblige to keep them in order — they chatter all the time, usually taking the piddle out our lads, and are like a bunch of squirming monkeys trying to unsuccessfully get the controller off me, even their girl friends
    Hah – fat chance.

    I miss bits of the game, because of the above, but I would vote against my opinion too, if I had known the commentators had chided Leno. 🤪

  11. fred1266 says:

    Yea willock has been amazing last few games

  12. fred1266 says:

    Rocky from the line it was showing he was playing striker along side Eddie

    We also played a 442 yesterday

    Nice to see my boy pepe scoring, still hoping this would be his breakout season

  13. fred1266 says:

    Leno Leno Leno, I bet you all we going to be talking about him for the entire week cause I expect Emi to have a he’ll of a game against us

  14. RockyLives says:

    That’s an interesting position for Willock, don’t you think?

    It also explains perhaps why Ceballos was so deep for most of the game. In fact in the first half, Dani was so deep that I forgot he was playing…

  15. Red Arnie says:

    Thank you, Redders, excellent read. 🙂

    Generally agree with your prognosis, only one minor variation. The Mouldy goal.

    The shooting from a distance was brilliant. However, our defence allowed them too much space trying to block entry into the box, rather than fight for every ball.

    A bit disappointing, but in the end Molde apperared to be more embarrased than us and gifted 2 OGs. No complaints! Youth project is work in progress but good overall.

  16. Sue says:

    U23s won 6-0… ESR with a brace 👌

  17. fred1266 says:

    Yea very interesting,, unless the we actually paid a 4231 wilh willock playing behind the striker

  18. Aaron says:

    Another site had data on Dani, and it is very impressive, a definite causation in enabling Willock to play so freely.

    Can’t wait for this weekend.

  19. RockyLives says:

    New Post

  20. Rasp says:

    Thanks Rocky, that’s a great ‘thinking out loud’ post. I can’t disagree. I think if we forget the price tag we can say he’s a good squad member in the same way as Willock and Nelsson. The problem is that they are improving. I guess his game might just be better suited to a less physically competitive league where he’ll get more space and fewer hard tackles. He’s a cheaper and more useable asset than Mesut … not every acquisition pays off. I was surprised when we signed him … we desperately needed a top CB at the time – could he be another product of the rumoured dodgy deals of personnel now not with the club?

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