Aaron Ramsey: Take a chance on me

March 4, 2015

Given the very late win by Aston Villa last night this is becoming a critical game for QPR. 3 points adrift of safety with some tough games ahead, they are struggling.

The number of teams who come up from the Championship only to return the following season are legion, Leicester are doomed and I fear QPR will have the same fate. Leicester came up as champions with 102 points yet are rooted to the bottom of the PL, QPR arrived through the play-offs, retained most of their squad, added Caulker, Mutch, Fer and Sandro for a combined cost of €30m and still struggle – proof once again of the gap in quality between the two divisions.

In Charlie Austin they have a fine player who is the fulcrum of their attack. Barton is missing through suspension which will probably mean Sandro the violent ex-Spud will start. Hope our players are wearing titanium shin pads and ankle protection.

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Essential kit when playing against Sandro

I think it is indicative of QPR’s ambitions that they have installed Chris Ramsey as manager – though sacking Harry was a major positive!

On paper we should win this. The bookies are offering 6/1 for a home win! We have taken 18 points out of 21, OG is scoring regularly, Ozil has 5 assists from 12 games,  ….  you know all the positives and negatives of this Arsenal team.

But before we get too confident – we have won just one out of our last 7 visits to Loftus Rd. A preposterous return.

Arsenal:  Ramsey is back in the squad and I would give him an hour tonight ahead of the MU game at the weekend. I believe we are a better team with Ramsey than without and if that results in dropping (rotating) Santi, Alexis or Ozil then so be it. This has not been Aaron’s best season thanks to disruption with injury but he remains our best box-to-box MF. I would give Cazorla a rest and bring him on in the last 15 minutes to enjoy himself.

Coquelin? Other players have performed with a smashed bugle and the lad is no oil painting anyway. If he can breathe he should start.

My Team:

Ospina

Bellerin     BFG     Gabriel      Monreal

Ramsey    Coquelin

Ozil   Alexis

Walcott     Giroud

Once again we have a very strong bench.

The only reason which I foresee Arsenal losing this game is over-confidence.

This is another game where none of the opposition players would get into the Arsenal squad, let alone starting 11 (perhaps Austin). But we are Arsenal and things do not always go as we hope, too often the side over-complicate or make stupid defensive mistakes. If we continue to be less concerned with possession and more concerned with efficient use of the ball we will win, however ….. this Arsenal team is so damned unpredictable.

I am 55% confident

COYRRG

Written by Big Raddy


A Comfortable 3 points?

December 27, 2014

Well, well, well, that was a walk in the park that almost resulted in a mugging.

Good start, even got a penalty awarded after seven minutes when Alexis is brought down by Traore, what a mug he’s learnt nothing since he left Arsenal. I thought there was an unwritten rule that the player fouled doesn’t take the penalty, but Alexis refused to give the nominated player, Cazorla, the ball and took it himself. Note to coaching staff: Alexis needs some pointers on how to take a penalty. Easy save for Rob Green.

The game meandered along much the same as before, Arsenal playing with a ball and QPR watching. Then a nice move between Welbeck and Cazorla saw the ball played out wide to Gibbs who crossed beautifully for Alexis to nod the ball in completely unopposed after thirty-seven minutes.

Half-time and half the job done.

Second half was much the same, although QPR did get hold of the ball a bit more but seemed at a loss as to what to do with it so gave it quickly back to Arsenal.

Fifty two minutes, enter stage left The Village Idiot! For no perceivable reason Giroud decides to take umbrage for a slight push in the back by Onuoha, so he head butted the QPR defender who, naturally, went down like a sack of s**t. Martin Atkinson, who was no more than three yards away from the incident, had no option but to dismiss the Arsenal striker. Nice one Ollie! A three match ban at the busiest time of the season.

Then on sixty-five minutes Alexis mesmerised the QPR defence, weaved his way into the box and laid one on a plate for Rosicky to put away with aplomb.

Only now do QPR finally wake up and start to play football, The pressure builds and QPR win a penalty on seventy-nine minutes, which Austin puts away, 2 – 1. Increasing pressure convinces Wenger to make changes, so off goes Rosicky to be replaced by Chambers, Arsenal are now being pinned in their own half, Welbeck replaced by Coquelin, With no Arsenal player up-field QPR are free to besiege the penalty area with impunity but the headless chicken defence holds out to take all three points.

written by Norfolk Gooner


QPR: T’was the Day after Christmas

December 26, 2014

Firstly. I hope all our readers had a wonderful Xmas and received all that was on the list you wrote to Santa Claus – unfortunately I must have got Santa’s address wrong because I got a bunch of stuff which will be taken to the charity shops next week 😡

Thankfully we have a game to relieve the tension of entertaining family members and it should be an enjoyable one.

Most London fans have a soft spot for QPR. From the old days of Marsh and Stan Bowles they have been my alternative London club (alongside Barnet). Why? Because we usually beat them. Unfortunately some dunderhead decided to appoint the objectionable ‘Arry as manager which has reduced my enjoyment – as many know I find the cheeky chappy/wheeler dealer, East London cabbie act seriously annoying.

But if I had to pick a game for a chilly Boxing Day evening, QPR would be the one. They are unlikely to park the bus, will be very competitive, have dangerous strikers but are beatable, and we need a win ahead of a difficult to trip to WHU. Statistics and history mean little but QPR have yet to win away this season and it is some time since they won at our place.

Joey Barton. Let’s leave it there.

Charlie Austin? Is he as good as the mug pundits insist? If he is the under-fire BFG will have to shape up.

Talking of which, BFG made a mistake at Anfield but it was his only one in the game – admittedly a very costly one. Why is Alexis in the red zone and not BFG? The man clearly needs a break but Mr Wenger’s CB transfer omission has resulted in our creaking German looking out of sorts.

Who starts today? I say the best players available. Until Arteta regains fitness Flamini is an automatic choice – we cannot rely upon Coquelin and other than him the cupboard is bare.

We welcome back the Invisible Wall that is Ospina – invisible because he has been AWOL; good to see TPIG get some competition. Also back are Theo, Yaya and Tomas. I would love to see Rosicky get some pitch time.

OK ….. Mrs Raddy is getting antsy for us to enjoy the winter sunshine.

Santa make my Xmas, bring us 3 points and an OG hat-trick. Pretty Please.

COYRRG

written by Big Raddy

 


Oops, I did it Again ….

May 4, 2013

Can Arsenal continue their fine run since that dark day somewhere in N17? 7 games unbeaten, 17 points. Since January, 11 played. Won 8 D2 L1. 26 points from 33 – that is League winning consistency and very different from the norm.

Different opinions abound about today’s game. Either it is good or bad to play a team already relegated. Will QPR play without restraint and freedom given they have no pressure? Will their players look to cement contracts or put on good performances in order to find a buyer? Or will they just have a dose of the Sod it’s and stroll through the afternoon? My guess is that this will be a tough game for Arsenal.

Those who have read my posts will know my opinion of Mr Redknapp.  I like QPR but when they took on this miscreant I looked forward greatly to watching him twitch his way to an ignominious end of the season. And this is why  ….. First off, Redknapp is ugly. Second, he has delusions of grandeur and a bizarre belief in his ability. Third, he destroys clubs. Fourth, he is a Spud. Fifth, he is a crook (allegedly). Sixth, he is as thick as a very thick person. Seventh, His son is a tool. Eighth, he thinks he is amusing and definitely not a wheeler-dealer. Ninth, his style of football is awful and based upon hard work and the love of a big man (Crouch). Tenth, he is a Spud and as such hates Arsenal. I could continue but you get the drift ……

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“So long, Farewell, Auf Wiedersehen, Goodnight”

Harry would never allow his team to lay down to Arsenal. Never. And QPR have some decent players – a fine GK, a quality CF, some battlers in midfield (Jenas loves a goal against us), Traore at FB and Bobby Zamora returns upfront.

For a tactical view of the game, may I recommend 7am Kickoff?

As always how Arsenal play this afternoon is tantamount; no fear, attack from the first, get an early goal and consolidate, stay tight at the back and organise at set-pieces, don’t make stupid individual errors and work hard. Simple really (can I have a job please, Mr Gazidis?)

We have almost a full squad to pick from. The loss of OG continues to highlight Mr Wenger’s curious decision to go into the season with just one Centre Forward. Doesn’t he recall the dark days of playing Arshavin at CF? We have to find someone in summer. But who knows – maybe Nik Bendtner will come back and fulfill his potential (as if!!).

My Team:

qpr v arse

I would love to see Ox start but it just ain’t gonna happen. Perhaps Wilshire will start ahead of Ramsey but Aaron has been great these past few weeks and so I expect JW to get 30 mins alongside Ox or Gerv. Monreal is back in the squad and could get some pitch time if we are well ahead on 70 mins.

Today’s English Explorer: Verney Lovett Cameron (1844-1894). Superb name and the full facial set. What more can we ask on this fine sunny Saturday afternoon? Vern’s continent was Africa. At a time when the English were wandering all over Africa discovering stuff, Vern was just walking, and walking distances.

Starting as an assistant to David Livingstone, Lovett made his first independent mission to Lake Tanganika where he followed the Congo-Zambezi watershed. This took him to the coast and Cameron thus became the first European to cross Africa from sea to sea (or is it ocean to ocean?). He later joined Richard Burton (one of our previous explorers) on an expedition through West Africa

230px-Verney_Lovett_Cameron_1878

Verney has a touch of the Aaron Ramsey about him, don’t you think?

Verney Cameron died falling off a horse in Leighton Buzzard, which, as we all know, is a treacherous and dangerous place. He was just 50 y.o.

Another vital 3 points on offer today. We are doing well and under normal circumstances should expect a victory today but as we know there is many a slip twix’t cup and lips.

p.s. Did I mention how happy I am that “Arry is Championship bound?

Big Raddy


Quo Vadis Arsenal v QPR

October 27, 2012

It is rare that Big Raddy struggles to raise enthusiasm for a post but this week has been just so disappointing. Two hard defeats, a dull AGM and another plucky  MU victory, all horribly depressing. Apart from our neighbours scraping a draw with a team of chicken farmers and the losses of MC and the Chavs, it has been unremitting pain.

BR on Thursday morning

But we Arsenal fans aren’t going to let a few disappointments mar our season are we? We are going to get back in the saddle and ride out to face the massing hordes of the enemy. And today we face one of football’s most craven villains. Not the team – everyone has a soft spot for QPR, but their manager, the odious frog -faced Mark Hughes. It is well documented that I have a problem with this miscreant; many detest SAF, others Pulis or Fat Sam, but for me Hughes is the arch villain – he is Lex Luther to Arsene’s Superman.

Just look at his record. This fool has destroyed club after club, admittedly he doesn’t cause the economic ruin that *Arry does, No, what Hughes does is more insidious. He teaches players to perform as he did, with touches of panache which disguise a petty violence – he is the ankle tapper, the achilles tendon breaker as opposed to the leg breaking of Allardyce. At least Allardyce stands up for his crimes to football, Sparky just blames others.

Unfortunately, Rangers have started to improve. The tens of millions spent on new players may not have been wasted as the team starts to gel. I watched their performance last weekend in the draw with Everton and QPR looked good – they could and should have won. Decent ball players, the creativity of Taraabt, some pace and stout defenders…. you know their assets as well as I do. But…..

This game will revolve entirely around Arsenal’s performance. My prayer is that we score early and stop the ill-humour which will inevitably grow should the team struggle. Get the fans onboard, start playing the football we know we can and get back to winning ways.

The signs are that Wilshere will get some pitch-time which is a huge fillip to the fans. So much expectation is resting upon his very young shoulders, but should he be the player we all think he is, then the future is rosy.

My team:

Much depends upon who is fit. What is clear is that somehow we have to create chances for the forwards. In the last two game we haven’t had a sniff at goal. We don’t have the type of strikers who can create their own chances, ours are finishers. The Gervinho in the middle ploy worked for a couple of games but (and I hesitate to say this) he is not intelligent enough to play the role being asked of him – he is no Thierry. We have an expensive CF, play him and let him show what he can do, let Giroud play 90 minutes. Podolski has been subbed in almost every game which makes me question his fitness, so why not give him a 2 week rest?

As to Santos. I feel he has been vilified in the same way that Ramsey, Song, Eboue etc etc have been. Santos is a good player working his way back into the team after a long lay-off through injury, that said, his lack of match fitness is costing us goals, both Norwich and Schalke’s first were as a direct result of Santos not keeping the defensive line; if Gibbs is fit he must start.

Today’s man is just a taster for one of Britain’s great heroes; David Livingstone was an extraordinary man who needs more time than I have today. Instead I will leave you with a picture of his father-in-law, a missionary who established a South African church in 1820.

Three  points is a must today. Not just to stop the rot but to condemn Mr Hughes to a P45 (if they exist anymore)

Written by Big Raddy


Join Together: Match Preview

March 31, 2012

Tough assignment writing about QPR.  Why? Because I have a real soft spot for Rangers, but and this is such a huge but, there is hardly a bigger but in the Western World  – not even J-Lo has a but this big. You know what I am referring to …. yes ….. two of the most unpleasant men ever to grace a football field,  Mark Hughes and Joey Barton. A match made in the deepest fires of perdition.

How can a fan of a proper club, a real family club accept the arrival of such odious men?

Imagine them arriving at Arsenal;  it would be enough to stop supporting the Gunners and return to watching park football. How many thousands of season tickets would be returned? Thankfully, it is a situation we will never have to face.

I really feel for QPR fans. End of last season they are deliriously happy with their return to the top flight after a long gap  (15 years ??).   New signings are made – big names, Wright Phillips, Armand Traore (good bit of business Arsene) , DJ Campbell, Anton Ferdinand . As a fan you think “OK, decent signings, nothing special but could be good”, then Barton is signed., and you think , “No, not to my club – we have values, we have principles”, but you also think Barton will add the fire needed to get mid-table (you are going to be sorely disappointed).

An OK start but Warnock is sacked despite winning over 40% of his games, could it get worse? Yes, the idiots sign Mark Hughes who left Fulham stating the Cottagers (now there’s a nickname ) were not capable of matching Sparky’s ambitions! The Fulham Chairman must be laughing loudest as Hughes sits in his sinking ship.

How does Hughes respond to QPR’s lowly postion? He keeps Barton as Club Captain, and signs Bobby Zamora and Djibril Cisse! Does this man have no shame? Or is he trying to be funny? Or could it be that he is one of the worst managers ever to litter the sidelines of the Premier League?

I have stated my opinion of this Welshman before, his record speaks for itself: 4 seasons at Blackburn –  4 times PL’s dirtiest team. Man City – 2 seasons. Spent over £150m on Robinho, Santa Cruz, Adebayor, Wayne Bridge, Wright Phillips,  Ben Haim and Jo ++  – finishes 10th and then loses 9 out of 11 games before getting sacked. Fulham – ruins a decent footballing team. And yet this hate filled, spiteful man keeps getting work!

We need a strong referee today because  judging from previous games against Hughes’s teams, our boys are in a for a physical battle, QPR cannot beat us with skill and Sparky knows that. My guess is he will tell Barton to concentrate on Song and Gervinho …. hopefully they have learned from their meeting with the little scrote at THOF.

OK …. enough of that. As I said I have a soft spot for QPR who will almost certainly get relegated thanks to investing in players and management who have no feeling whatsoever for the club.

Arsenal on the other hand have discovered a sense of unity.; the old fashioned “one for all, all for one” which is essential for our future success. We have superb individuals all over the pitch but Arsenal can be so much more than the sum of their parts – and we have started to show it. In my opinion the man to spark this remarkable turnaround is the most surprising – the ageing and crocked Tomacz Rosicky.  He has been magnificent over the past few weeks and reminded us of what we lost with his recurrent injuries.

My team:

I have a sneaky feeling Gervinho will score today; he needs a goal. Recently, Mr Wenger has opted for a more defensive left sided attacker (Benayoun/OC) when playing away from home but I hope he takes the game to QPR and attacks from the off. An early goal for the good guys will surely lead to 3 points.

Inventor from Shepherds Bush?  The stonemason George Wimpey who developed cheap house and road building methods resulting in ownership of the largest construction company in Britain.

Mr. Wimpey. Earned more a week than YaYa Toure.

And  …. 3 of the 4 members of The Who were born within a mile of Loftus Rd,( hence today’s song title)

We are in a great run of form, the atmosphere around the club is better than it has been for many a month, players other than Van Persie are scoring goals,  we have a dangerous frontline, we have a solid defence, at last we have 2 proper full backs, we have what could be the best midfielder in the country  in a midfield that is working superbly and we have a fine young keeper.

Worrying isn’t it?

COYRRG

Written by Big Raddy


A view of the Emirates from a non-gooner

January 8, 2012

Today’s post is written by Neil, a QPR supporter who we met up with before the game last Saturday. These are his thoughts on the game and the Emirates experience.

I got the chance to visit the Emirates stadium as I have always wanted to, as iI had heard a lot about it and it always looks great on TV.

I wasn’t worried what game I got to see, but Sat 31st December 2011 I received a belated christmas present from TotalArsenal. A ticket for the match v my beloved QPR.

I was a bit nervous on going as I knew I will be sitting somewhere away from the QPR fans and wouldn’t be able to cheer my team on, and then I thought hang on we are playing Arsenal away, we will probably loose 3- 0 so there wont be much to cheer anyway.

Travelling down from Norwich with TotalArsenal he told me that we would be meeting some other Arsenal fans and AA-bloggers in a pub near the ground. He said they were really nice people and in fact one of them was actually born in Shepherds Bush!!

He wasn’t wrong: the bloggers were very warming and welcoming and I sort of felt as if I supported Arsenal for a second or two. We shared conversations on our teams while watching ManU get beaten before heading off to the game, still thinking we would get beat 3-0.

On walking across the bridge to the stadium I looked up and saw all the banners with previous players, being the later side of 21 I remembered most of them. My Uncle in fact supported Arsenal: I used to go with him to the old Highbury where he used to sit me on one of the barriers to watch the game as I was only 8. Sorry, but once I found my legs and could get to football on my own it was QPR I chose, being from West London. Who are ya “VCC” the man that was born in Shepherds bush?!

Anyway “WOW” what a sight as I walked around from letter “D” to letter “P” passing the QPR fans in letter “L” to get in.

It was a really good feeling being there, but I still thought nothing less than 3-0 to the home side was the likely outcome. Anyway, once inside we walked up what seemed like 20 flights of stairs and found our seats, and the view was immense, fantastic to say the least, plus I could hear the QPR fans to my right, way below me.

The teams came out as I sat down, I then had to refocus to try to capture who was who on the pitch.

The game kicked off and to my surprise, the sound of silence came upon me except for “We are QPR” from the away fans in the distance, and many other general conversations around me. It didn’t feel like I was at a football match, let alone the mighty Arsenal. It was very strange to say the least. I thought QPR acquitted themselves well and although I was waiting for Arsenal to score, I got more and more encouraged and thought: already a couple of dodgy results recently, there may be one here, and my mind started to change to 3-1 instead of a 3-0 thrashing.

Going in at half time 0-0 sent shivers up my spine, we were doing well, and yes Arsenal were doing bad but that’s football sometimes.

QPR started to get on top after Arsenal missed what can only classed as sitters (notably by Walcott). Not being an Arsenal fan, I am one of those not convinced by his commitment, confidence and dare I say technical ability: yes I can, as I would have at least hit the target in his position, to every game.

No sooner than I thought we’re getting on top and started to dream of a 0-0 scoreline, up popped RvP latching onto a pass from Arshavin (I think he was still on the pitch at the time) via a misplaced pass from QPR’s own 3 letter person SWP.

The crowd went wild and started cheering RvP’s name. It was strange that the crowd found their voices only when he got the ball and of course scoring meant they could cheer for a little longer. I did stand up when the goal went in, only to sarcastically clap SWP’s pass.

So time ticked on, a couple of chances at both ends admittedly easier ones in the QPR box, but no more goals and no more cheering.

1-0 not a bad result, but being biased maybe we could have nicked a draw, but hey, I visited the Emirates and thought it was a fantastic stadium and a great day. I thought Arsenal could and should have played better, and QPR played better that they had done recently. I now look forward to the return match in March, where hopefully Arsenal will be preoccupied with CL football and we have added players to our squad.

However, you do need to find some voices from somewhere it might be the layout of the stadium, as some have mentioned, but I have never sat in a football stadium and heard other peoples conversations during a match. I believe if the voices were found and then heard, trophies won’t be far away. Good luck and many thanks for the day.

A Non-Gooner, Neil.