Goal fest at The Emirates …….. everyone shines

September 25, 2019

It became pretty clear soon after the start that there was only going to be one winner and so it turned out to be with the good guys cruising to victory giving the endangered Emery three wins in a week. The penny is going to drop soon! The gulf of talent between the two sides was substantial and the game was in danger of becoming too one sided but as the saying goes: you can only beat who is in front of you and that is exactly what this young Arsenal side did – convincingly.

Martinez: touched the ball two or three times, didn’t have to make a save, clean sheet so 10

Chambers: three assists, what’s not to like? 10

Mustafi: in this parallel universe Skhodran is a cool, calm, thoughtful player: 9; he loses one just to keep the collective bias going.

Holding: Big Rob is back, and scoring goals to boot, interesting to see how UE reintegrates him into the first team:10

Tierney: oooh, oooh, this boy has a brain; he is so intelligent with the ball; his passing and crossing are superb, looks about 12 from where I was sitting, again should be interesting how UE introduces him into the first team but my guess is that he is not going to rush: 10

Torriera: playing the pure DM role tonight and played it well, is Emery going to take the risk of playing him there in the EPL, watch this space, great game: 10

Willock: all over the place; as in, covered every inch of the pitch, driving us forward and finding the back of the net:10

Ozil: Classy as ever but while everyone around him was giving 110% he still gives the impression that he would prefer to be on the beach. 8

Smith-Rowe (lab) Hope the going off was just precautionary: 10

Martinelli: started very brightly and getting on the score sheet but disappeared in the second half until he popped up towards the end to score the goal of the night.10

Nelson: I am writing this in bed so I have got to hurry now, she who must be obeyed is coming. Reis, got his goal, not going to jump back ahead of Saka but still on the right track:10

Subs

Saka: growing in confidence with every minute on the big stage that he gets: 10

Ceballos: offers more than Ozil in the Emery world of things:10

Bellerin: Hector is back yayyyyyyyyyyyyyy: 10

LB


Cariboa cup Arsenal v Nottingham Forest pre-match

September 24, 2019

The Carabao Cup returns on Tuesday evening. Arsenal welcome Nottingham Forest to the Emirates, in the 3rd round of the competition.

 

Our opponents are on a pretty impressive run, not only knocking out Derby in the last round, but are also sitting in 6th place in the championship, having lost only once, on the opening day.

Forest is now home to the one and only Carl Jenkinson (we love you, Jenko!) After 8 years (& various loan spells) with us (41 appearances, 1 goal) he bade us farewell & headed for pastures new. He’ll always be welcomed back at the Emirates ……….. just a shame it won’t be tonight, as he’s injured his ankle! Get well soon, Jenko!

After our heroics, against Villa, on Sunday.. I expect a lot of rotation. Maitland-Niles will be missing through suspension, due to his dismissal. Lacazette is still out of contention. It may be too soon for Bellerin & Tierney, having only played 62 minutes for the U23’s at the weekend. Holding is now available and we may even see Mavrapanos.

This is who I’ll go with –

Martinez
Chambers   Mustafi   Holding   Kolasinac
Willock   Torreira   Saka
Martinelli   Ozil   Nelson

I also think we’ll see John-Jules and Balogun make an appearance, from the bench.

We’ve played Nottingham Forest before, at the same stage of this competition, back in 2016. Arsenal ran out 4-0 winners at the City ground. Forest had their revenge, 2 years later, winning 4-2, at the same venue, in the FA cup and completely ruined my Birthday! So come on Arsenal!!!

I’m fancying a penalty shoot out….

Mrs Kolasinac


Bernd Leno … next Arsenal Captain

July 19, 2019

I totally understand people being annoyed with Koscielny and feeling let down, but I have a slight issue when people talk about him being captain and how a captain shouldn’t behave in this way.

Let’s be honest, the captaincy at Arsenal has meant very little for nearly 10 years now. It wasn’t that long ago that I wrote a comment about how our ‘captains’ had played less than 10% of PL games over a 5 year period. That’s an absolute joke! Even the season just gone, we started it with 5 so-called captains, I mean what the hell is that!? Obviously Koscielny’s antics don’t help bring any respect back to the captaincy, but I think that respect had died a long time ago.

Emery really needs to have a long hard think about what he wants from his next captain and he needs to ensure that he chooses someone who plans on sticking around and hopefully chooses someone who isn’t sat in the stands most of the time.

Give us an idea of who is the most popular choice for captain among Arsenal supporters by voting in the poll at the bottom of this article.

Personally, I’d be giving it to Leno. I know a lot have mentioned Sokratis, but he is a bit too fiery for me and may cause disruption if he gets into the players too much. I like his passion and i’d want that to continue, but I think I’d prefer someone a little more level-headed for the role.

Xhaka is another option and the extra responsibility may see him cut out some of the silly mistakes, but I always get the impression he’s glancing at the exit door. A dark horse might be Holding. If he can break into the first team and become a regular after his injury then I’d love the idea of a young, English old-fashioned centre half captaining Arsenal again.

It’s about time being captain of Arsenal meant something again. Let’s hope Emery gets it right.

Written by fatgingergooner


Shkodran Mustafi – can we trust him?

June 27, 2019

According to Mustafi’s Instagram account he’d like us to believe that, like an eagle, he’s going to use ‘the negative energy of a storm to fly even higher’. It must be hard for a player to know how the fans feel about him, I haven’t seen many articles supporting him staying with Arsenal.

He has been guilty of losing concentration and allowing the defense to be breached on too many occasions to not question whether he should be replaced. His experience as a World Cup winner with Germany is one reason why we should keep him ……….. we don’t have many winners in the squad.

When he joined us in 2014 we went on a great run of unbeaten games, in fact he beat Bacary Sagna’s run of an unbeaten start with 18 games and boasted that we never lost when he played. Sadly that came back to bite him on the behind as he was unable to shore up the defense in the way that we needed.

If his partnership with Koscielny had worked out it would have been perfect for us as he was only 24 when he joined and therefore Koscielny could now be passing him the baton.

 

Luckily we have a couple of young CB’s in Holding and Mavropanos coming through and Sokratis who has impressed but if we can’t find a buyer for Mustafi we’re stuck with him and we don’t have funds available to add another better CB to the squad.

How would you feel if Mustafi was still lining up for us in August?

peachesgooner


Arsenal’s most important player this season is _______?

January 10, 2019

This question was posed on twitter by @ltarsenal and some of the replies were quite surprising, so why not have a crack at it on here while we wait for the weekend?

Runners and Riders (in no particular order)

Rob Holding

Many were surprised when Calum C went out on loan before the season started and a certain lad we bought from Bolton for a £2m was chosen to stay and develop at his home club.  His play this season has been a revelation. Cool, composed, able to bring the ball forward and with an eye for a pass, too. Some might say our defence looking decidely ropey has coincided with his absence.

Lucas Torreira

Eased in slowly frustrating Arsenal fans at the start of the season, Lucas began by making top notch contributions from the bench before getting his starting berth. Perhaps, if LBG is correct and he’s been moved further forward in Unai’s recent formations, his effectiveness has been slightly lessened when not sat right in front of the back four receiving and destroying.

Alex Lacazette

Many replies on twitter mentioned Laca. He is a fans’ favourite and certainly brings an aggressiveness and work rate which often seem responsible for lifting the whole shooting match. Less goals than Auba from perhaps more chances but he’s often won back possession from his feisty closing down (and given away a few free kicks into the bargain!).

Granit Xhaka

To some, Granit’s inclusion in this list would be the biggest shock but he does seem Unai’s first name on the teamsheet in many respects. When we are playing well, he does seem the centre of the well-oiled machine. Countless accurate passes and an ability to switch play others lack. Detractors would say ‘yes, but how many of those passes actually achieve anything’.  Then again, all teams require water carriers, ask Gilberto.

Hector Bellerin

When he’s missing from the team, you do start to realise how important he is on the right side. Still not the finest defender in the world but such a talent on the ball. Arsenal’s right flank without the Catwalk king and, to a lesser extent Micki, has been a little lacking in punch, drive and creativity.

Pierre Emerick Aubameyang

Goals from nowhere, some have suggested we’d be floating just below mid-table without Auba’s 14 goals. His strike record in October/November was simply stunning, scoring from virtually all of his shots on target. A fair few of his goals have come when he’s made an entrance off the bench. Some point out his lack of fire, Laca style, but maybe that isn’t the quality he was bought for.

I’m not sure if anyone else should be regarded as a contender.

What do you think? Could you make a case for someone not listed above.

Mesut anyone?

chas


Mustafi or Holding – who partners the Greek Colossus – Poll?

October 16, 2018

Morning all, fellow suffering Gunners.

Back to me poll do-da to help fill the gap.

Pretty sure we’d all be pretty close now after 8 league games to picking Unai’s starting XI.

I’m by far and away the most knowledgeable on this site when it comes to attacking football, but beyond useless when it comes to defenders, so although it appalls me to admit this, I need your help.

My interest in defenders goes no further than Tony Adams, although I’m aware that when it comes to the overall defence, continuity is vital as it’s the misunderstandings that lead to more let-ins than anything else.

Sadly, and hopefully only for now, I’m having to leave Laurent out of the equation and just hope he makes a full and speedy return. He would make the poll irrelevant.

So, here we go. Same as before,  4-2-3-1. Difference today is that I’m insisting Sokratis is a starter, so you’re picking the other CB. Does Holding have a real future? If so, and it’s a close call between him and Mustafi, would that swing it? I have no idea.

mickydidit89


Who will play at Deepdale?

January 7, 2017

Preston? Never been there. Deepdale?  Never been there.  North End?  Same.  Did I ever see Tom Finney play? No. Have I ever heard of any of PNE’s players? No. Their manager, Simon Grayson …. well, I did see him play for Blackburn.

Unknown.jpeg Preston’s Finest

In other words I have no qualifications to write this pre-match other than my love for their opposition.

I love the FA Cup, always have. I love that we won it twice in the past 3 years. That said, some of my most painful memories are attached to the FAC (Wrexham 😦 ++). Is there anything as painful as losing in a Cup Final? Perhaps a kick in the crown jewels but not much else.

A loss today could be equally painful and it is not beyond the realms of possibility. Play like we did for the first 70 minutes at B’mouth and we are in peril.

Positives: Welbeck is on the bench and ready to establish himself as an Arsenal great. Nigeria didn’t qualify for the ACN so Iwobi is available for selection. Bellerin cannot play so poorly twice in a row. OG is in fine scoring form.

 

Not so Great:  We only have two fit and available MF’s. We only have Jenkinson should AW decide to give Hector a rest, though this is the level where he excels. Sanchez will be rested. Ozil is sick. Santi is out for the next few notes. Koscielny limped off at the Cherries. BFG isn’t fit yet.

I am hoping Holding gets another chance today, he is a fine prospect.  With Chambers doing very well at struggling Boro, we have two fine young CBs for the future.

Unknown-1.jpeg

My Team:

Ospina

Bellerin    Holding    Gabriel    Monreal

Ramsey    Xhaka     Iwobi

Ox   OG   Perez

Actually it is not true that I know none of Preston’s players, they have Dane in the team – the 6´7″ Simon Makienok who is a central striker. He used to play for Brondby which is a major black mark.

We can expect hoof ball from PNE. We can also expect a dreadful pitch designed to negate our silky skills. It will be a hard physical battle and let’s just hope we can leave Deepdale with a victory and no injuries.

Let it be so.

COYRRG