Time for a Change

October 18, 2017

Just a quickie…

Last weekend’s 15 minute collapse was horribly painful and worse, a return to the type of loss of control we have seen over the past few seasons.

But

Everything changed in one moment and it was a moment out of control of anyone in an Arsenal shirt. I write of the cheating Watford player and the awful refereeing decision made by Swarbrick. WE NEED VIDEO TECHNOLOGY IN THE PL.

I have no doubt that Arsenal would have won the game had the penalty not been given. We were comfortable and likely to score again, instead 3 points were lost and more worrying the fragile confidence built over the brief run of wins is gone.

And we would have 3 more points has Lacazette not been wrongly adjudged offside at Stoke.

A 30 second delay whilst a video ref assessed the footage and wrong decisions are reversed.

How can this work? Well, it is hardly a new discussion, is it? Do I care whether this technology is not available at all levels of soccer? No, I don’t give a monkey’s cuss. Do you? All I care about is that AFC stop being the victim of rubbish refereeing and diving cheats.

n.b. I am fully aware that Leicester would have been awarded a penalty when Mustafi brought down some numbskull but Cech would have saved it (as if :_D)

written by Big Raddy


Into the Hornet’s Nest

October 14, 2017

The Good: We are on a fine run of results having lost just one of our last 5 games. Watford have yet to win a game at home this season.

The Not So Good: Watford are on a fine run of results having lost just one of their last 5 games. We have yet to win a PL game away from home this season.

A draw seems the obvious result.

images-1.jpeg

The Interlull was costly in terms of injuries with Mustafi out for a number of games and Sanchez, Kolasinac, Xhaka and Ramsey unlikely to start this afternoon’s late kick-off thanks to exhaustion . Mustafi’s injury is unfortunate because Mr Wenger has yet to discover a consistently effective back 3, though our recent defensive record is good (none conceded in last 4 PL games). The injuries to Chambers, Kos and Mustafi must drive AW nuts.

Chambers is interesting. Rumours were that he would be sold in summer, instead it was Gabriel. Then fans said he was persona non grata with Mr Wenger and had no future at AFC, yet this week he signed a new contract until 2021!! I predict a big Arsenal future for the young man.

Unknown.jpeg

Thanks to the Internationals our starting 11 is difficult to predict. Welbeck is back in the squad, so is Magic Mesut. Will Iwobi be rested after his Nigerian exploits? Will Theo get a start or Giroud? I have huge respect for Mr Giroud as he continues to score on a regular basis – is there a better attacking sub in the PL?

Watford: Sorry – you will have to look elsewhere to discover their strengths and weaknesses. For some reason I cannot raise the enthusiasm to do any research. I enjoyed the trips to Vicarage Road and always associated Watford with an excellent multi-racial policy (think Blisset and the wonderful John Barnes), bit today …

My Team:

Cech

Holding     Koscielny    Monreal

Bellerin   Elneny    Wilshere    Kolasinac

Ozil

Lacazette   Welbeck

I like this team, it has creativity and defensive security. Mr Wenger has been “bigging up” Wilshire as he returns to fitness and form, surely he will start this evening. With Theo and OG on the bench we have potent attackers on the bench should they be needed.

Today’s referee is Neil Swarbrick, surely not the violin wizard from Fairport Convention?

Can we open our Away wins account? Why not?

Let it be so ….

COYRRG


Walcott & Welbeck?

April 2, 2016

Chickens ….. Count.

Arsenal did last time we played Watford at home and crashed out a Cup we could and should have won. We had the chance to take a Wembley revenge on WHU for the Trevor Brooking Never Scores With His Head moment which would have been satisfying, especially to those who attended 😦

Many blamed Mr Wenger for the home loss but given the last 15 minutes showed how much better we were than Watford I think the blame lies firmly at the feet of the players.

arsenal-woe-large_trans++qVzuuqpFlyLIwiB6NTmJwfSVWeZ_vEN7c6bHu2jJnT8.jpg

I am not going to write about Watford, three times a season for them is excessive.

Interlull will affect the selection  – Alexis played twice and had to fly back from Venezuela where he assisted two of the 4 goals Chile scored. Some of the other chaps had midweek flights. Mr. Wenger will assess who has been affected by both the games and the travel.

I would like to see this team start:

Cech/Ospina

Bellerin    BFG     Koscielny     Monreal

Elneny    Coquelin

Ozil    Iwobi

Walcott    Welbeck

This team is selected with one aim – pace. Though I cannot see AW being so gung-ho my section should please the Purists.

Walcott should benefit from the tactical discipline of Elneny and concentrate purely on attack. Why make the man run back to defend – he cannot tackle, jockey or make a defensive header so why make him use his energy in our half?

Iwobi? He has been playing so well but is another who has travelled far, having made a sub appearance against Elneny’s Egypt midweek, nonetheless he makes my team.

To have a chance of the title Arsenal have to win all their remaining games, it can be done, we have done it before. The run starts this afternoon.

COYRRG

 


Wenger’s 3rd Double?

March 13, 2016

FA Cup quarterfinals, at home in front of our 12th man, a relatively fit squad and against a team we have already beaten 3-0 away this season; surely an Arsenal win – if only it were so simple!

The draw at SHL and away hammering of Hull could and should give rise to optimism with the expectation of a successful run in both the League and FA Cup, The team must be buoyed by the prospect of the Hatrick of FAC’s.

What of Watford? Nice family club 😀

Strong in defence and midfield, stuttering upfront after initially looking potent. It is only a couple of moths since the media (bizarrely)  linked us with Troy Deeney and  were raving about his strike partner (whose name I can’t be bothered to Google).

Watford have already had an excellent season having probably achieved their target of survival in the PL. They come to THOF in the midst of a poor run having won only 2 of their last 11 PL games.

I like their manager; Quique Sanchez  Flores, I would like both his job and his name.(useless fact – the legendary Alfredo di Stefano is his godfather)

One certainty this lunchtime is whomever is in goal for Watford will have a stormer. They always do. Both Gomes and Pantilliaman are excellent GK’s and I expect them to be busy, very busy.

Our Team: Ramsey is a major loss especially given the number of injuries in midfield. One more and Flamini returns! However, this gives Elneny a chance to cement his place in the team; a very impressive performance at Hull gives rise to the hope that Mr Wenger has discovered another gem. The El Nino/ Coq combo gives defensive solidity and also allows the attackers to concentrate more on attack. Walcott, in particular, could benefit .

Walcott or Campbell?  Welbeck or Giroud? What do you think? I lean towards Campbell and Giroud.

I believe that happiness depends upon setting achievable goals; the CL is not achievable thanks to the quality of the top 3 clubs (4 with PSG and 5 with BD). Realistically we are highly unlikely to beat one of them let alone two, so we must look elsewhere to find our goals and they are the PL and the FA Cup. Arsenal have won one of the goals their past two seasons, we are in a strong position to continue this quest for happiness.

The Double is On.

COYRRG


Theo to Sting the Hornets

October 17, 2015

Just a Quickie as BR is on holiday …….

Long internal enlivened by some fine performances by our chaps. Highlight has to be Ramsey who was superb for Wales – though Alexis’ 3 goals is quite tasty!

Watford: It is many years since I trudged from Watford main train station to the Vicarage Road – so long that all I can remember is that it was a sunny afternoon and we won. Let’s be honest, Watford, for all their Premiership credentials, are a small club. They have done brilliantly to get to 12th in the PL and I predict they will stay up but even getting a point today will be above the Watford fans expectations.

images-1

I was listening to a Watford fan (are they Hornets?) and his main positive about this afternoon was that Alexis will be on the bench following his transatlantic flights. Are we capable of winning sans-Alexis? We shall find out.

Assuming Mr Wenger gives Alexis a rest have we enough to win the game and who will play out on the left? Will the Ox get a start on the right with Ramsey coming infield and Ozil going left? Will Arteta start allowing Santi to play the Alexis role?  Perhaps Giroud will start and Theo go centre left. Loads of permutations which bodes well for the season.

Luckily the French team have not woken up to the fact that Coquelin is the best DM in Europe – long may that continue.

Theo is in the best scoring run of his career and I see no reason why it should stop today.

My hope is that the feelgood factor following the MU thrashing has imbued the squad with enough positivity to see us win the PL title , the Champions League, the FA Cup (has there ever been a triple winner?), the Ryder Cup and the Islington bi-election. However, two weeks in football is a long time and beating Watford will do for a starter.

Scoring has been  problem for Watford – they are the lowest scorers in the PL but they have the best defence! So on paper this will be a low scoring game.

If we keep a clean sheet we will win.

COYRRG

Written by Big Raddy