When will we see The Emery Effect?

June 2, 2018

Just won our first trophy of the new season as Beth Mead was voted England’s Women’s Young Player of the Year. Well played Beth.

It is early days in the transfer market. It will be a very busy few weeks as the transfer period has been shortened to conclude on Aug 9th instead of Aug 31st, plus few players will be willing to discuss moving clubs during the World Cup.

We have discussed at length the needs of the team though Emery may well disagree. Do you think it was the new manager who decided the shirt numbers? If so, Cech is our Number One and my hopes of us signing a top quality young GK will be dashed. Perhaps the young GK’s at Arsenal are considered to be good enough to step up the the first team.

How will Emery assess the strength of the squad without actually working with them? He will not get the chance until after the WC and the player’s holiday time. I doubt we will see the Emery effect until after Xmas.

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Anyone who watched the France vs Italy game last night will have seen why Lacazette is not in their final 23. Two teenage front men whose combined transfer fees are €400m (yes – €400m) were frighteningly good. Lemar got a short kickabout and our former target looks top quality, though whether he is worth €100m is doubtful. I can see France winning the WC playing some wonderful attacking football, if they don’t it will be due to crap management.

Not much going on, hence the randomness (is that a word) of the post!

written by Big Raddy

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Interlull Injuries

March 23, 2018

Not only is a 3 week lay-off mid-season inordinately dull, it is also costly to the Arsenal squad.

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Both Wilshire and Koscielny have been withdrawn from their respective squads for games this weekend.

Fortunately both injuries appear to be wear and tear and not something as devastating as JW’s ankle knack when playing another meaningless game for England.

How does this help the club which pays their wages?

There isn’t an answer. If I were a player my ambition would always be to represent my country and friendlies, as crap as they are, are still a cap.

Let us hope nothing untoward happens to our Internationals before we play Stoke at home

written by Big Raddy


Prêt à acheter, Arsène

June 13, 2017

Come on, you get my drift. Pret à Manger, Pret à Porter, Footballers to Buy.

Anyway, France v England tonight (and on proper telly) in a friendly, and oh garçon, do they have some good footballers.

Looking through their squad there are quite a few who I reckon would look excellent in an Arsenal shirt, and don’t forget, the list does not include Benzema or Martial.

 

Hugo Lloris

Defenders: Lucas Digne, Christophe Jallet, Presnel Kimpembe , Laurent Koscielny, Benjamin Mendy, Djibril Sidibe , Samuel Umtiti, Raphael Varane, Kurt Zouma

Midfielders: N’Golo Kante ,Blaise Matuidi, Paul Pogba,  Adrien Rabiot,  Moussa Sissoko , Corentin Tolisso

Forwards: Ousmane Dembele , Olivier Giroud , Antoine Griezmann , Alexandre Lacazette , Thomas Lemar , Kylian Mbappe , Dimitri Payet , Florian Thauvin

 

Personally, I can’t stand England because of the filth that follow them, so couldn’t care less who wins, but I will watch with my Arsenal eyes glued to the French.

Guessing we’ll buy three players this summer, and with one excellent looking signing in the bag already, I would be very happy to select two more from that French lot.

Written  by MickyDidIt89


Our Boys in France

June 8, 2016

We have 10 players strutting their stuff at the Euro’s, how will they fare?

In a quiet summer where transfer rumours are few and far between we need something to chat about so I suggest we look at the performances of our chaps on a game by game basis.

So, on Friday we have Koscielny and Giroud quickening the pulse playing for France against Romania KO. 20.00 GMT.

Saturday afternoon gives us a view of Granit Xhaka playing for Switzerland against Albania.

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The evening entertainment is England’s first game and the chance that Wilshire will start. In my opinion he is head and shoulders England’s best midfielder (name a better one) and must start.

Aaron Ramsey will also be playing on Saturday at 17.00 GMT vs Slovakia. Surely a must win game for Wales.

TPIG is in the squad for Poland on Sunday at 17.00 GMT but I expect Flapianski to start ahead of him.

Mesut Ozil kicks off his campaign against on Sunday night at 20.00 GMT against Ukraine.

Young Hector should start for Spain on Monday at 14.00 GMT against our gloveman Petr Cech who is representing Czech Republic alongside the wonderful Tomas Rosicky.

Luckily, most of our players have not been selected and will hopefully start the season rested and 100% fit. Who knows – it could happen!

written by Big Raddy


Koscielny is Key

July 2, 2014

Watching the World Cup and our players representing their countries it is possible to view their performances without the bias of an Arsenal match.  I would like to highlight our central defenders.

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Having enjoyed the Germany/ Algeria game it became apparent that Mertesacker was being focussed upon by the Algerian midfield. They chose to send long balls onto a forward who was as close to Per as possible. Why? Because Per has excellent vision and pitch awareness, he knows where to snuff out danger and how to make the best of his talents, but what he doesn’t have is pace. My grandmother with bricks on her feet has more pace – even I am fleeter of foot. In the first half in particular the Algerians attacked this weakness. The German response was to use the goalkeeper Neuer as a sweeper – not the most secure defensive tactic!

Germany use Merts as the distributor from the back and as such he is always the last man and it repeatedly caused Germany problems. He does the same at Arsenal but for us he doesn’t appear to be such a liability – why?

Let’s look at France’s defensive set-up. Two attacking wingers, the best (? RM think so) young centre back in world football and Koscielny. What has become clear is just how reliant France are upon Kos’s awareness and pace. He always seems to be in the right place at the right time. Varane may well become a brilliant player but right now he is being educated by his centre back partner. It was good fortune for France that Sakho was injured and Deschamps was forced to play Kos whom the French blamed for the loss in their first game against Ukraine in the WC play-offs.

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Kos is two-footed according to Sagna (and he should know), he has a prodigious leap, is tactically aware but above all is is quick – very quick. Arsene bought him for €9m and after a problematic opening season he has developed into a key player at Arsenal. When he is missing even a fine defender like Vermaelen cannot fully replace him.

Which brings me to this. To be successful one has to have a proper CB partnership – we have one of the finest. Per and Laurent complement each other. They have different skills – Kos is a better tackler, Merts is better in the air, Kos is better with the ball at hois feet and running into midfield, Merts is better at distribution out of defence.

The fact of the matter is that Mertesacker is a better player when Koscielny is by his side and vice versa.

There isn’t a better CB partnership in the World Cup than Arsenal have at the Emirates – we should be proud.

Written by Big Raddy


Poll: Today’s winners?

June 30, 2014

France vs Nigeria: Nigeria squeezed through qualification but I like them. Decent footballers with considerable skill, great athletes and a fine kit. Part of my affection is due to spending much time in Nigeria searching for unknown breeds of fish (unsuccessfully!!., And then there is the Kanu factor. I loved Kanu – still do,  a real gentleman and a superb ambassador for his country, oh, and the scorer of the finest hat-trick ever seen at Stamford Bridge. And if that isn’t enough Nwanko remains a committed Gooner as you can see from his website.

The French. I have a love/hate relationship with both the country and the football team. I so much enjoyed the victory in 1998 when Arsenal won the World Cup but I also enjoyed the disaster in South Africa in 2010. This time we have a few lads in the French squad and for that reason I will support them tonight. They have a flaky manager – how else can one explain how Deschamps would  pick Sakho ahead of Koscielny or drop Giroud after an exceptional performance against the Swiss?

So, it’s France for me.

Germany vs Algeria: Another African team and one who will give the Germans a tough match. They have surprised many (including BR) with their teamwork but surely tonight is the end of an exciting journey. 4 goals against Korea was a shock but highlighted what an easy group they were in.

Germay will be rightly confident. They are the best European side and have yet to hit top form. With 3 AFC players (plus hopefully one or two more to come) in the squad and at least two to start, they have to be favourites. Nonetheless, if they get beaten it will give our lads a couple of weeks more holiday

Germany win.


I hate the French but like sizzling hot redheads

June 24, 2012

I need to open with a couple of points of clarification. I hate the French for not beating Spain, and the bit about redheads was only lobbed in to garner hits.

Now I have to admit that due to other commitments, I only watched ten minutes of the France-Spain encounter, however, I was bored rigid. If the Spanish pass, pass, pass, pass, pass game is any way the apex or ultimate variant of the Barca Style, then I want “out” now.

When we at The Arsenal play our intricate little passing triangles with 70% possession, while camped in the final third and the opposition with the bus firmly parked, quite often the most exciting moments of the game are when said oppo. break free and counter.

Back in the day, when DB and TH graced the hallowed green meadow at Highbury, we would power away up field from defending a corner with such electric pace and fluidity that the opposition would be transfixed like a rabbit caught in the headlights.

By all means let’s hog possession, but can’t we do it lower down and save the high line for taking the mick once we are two up after ten minutes.

Look at the times we were undone at home last season, by whom, and playing what system?

What I will now call the “Sparca Style” lacks pace, expansiveness and above all excitement. It has become, to my bright eyes at least, a bus parky variation. Simply, they are parking further up the road.

The only times we get to Ooo and Ahhh during Barca play is when we witness moments of magic from a Messi or an Iniesta. What I’m saying is, would those moments simply be magnified if played at high speed and in wide open spaces.

“This is rubbish” I said to myself while watching my whole ten minutes. It’s like a game of pass the bloomin’ parcel where the host Mum has left the cd playing and buggered off outside for a fag or two.

What I am saying is let’s mix it up. Not long ball, but just remember it’s a long pitch so let’s use it.

Oh, and who I am I kidding, I really do hate the French (I had a wee bet on the soap dodgers to win), and I also do like sizzling hot redheads (although “did like” would be slightly more accurate).

Written by MickyDidIt89