Too Clever is Not Clever..

April 30, 2009

Right I have counted to 10 and thought about last nights match. Not content with having chucked in the FA cup in with poor decisions,  Mr Wenger has done it again.

Call me old fashioned but when our first choice left back is injured just replace him with our reserve left back. When our centre half is injured just replace him with our reserve centre half. No not you Arsene, we have the best midfielder in the world playing in DB10’s position, we had the player who took Man U apart with his long range shooting playing defensive midfield. In the same game at the Emirates the man who played second striker so effectively is now playing on the left wing.

Why not see if Theo could have a run at O’Shea on the left wing or let Nasri go left Cesc drops back and Diaby plays in the hole?

AAAAARRRHHHHH It was better when Arsene has no choice too much is killing us.

You were lucky last night Arsene we should have lost that 4-0, we were lucky that Man U never got the momentum up that would have killed us off dead.

Something else I noticed last night, when a class technical player has a ball played to him, one touch and that ball is there to be used again, it takes Ade from the “D” to the centre circle to control it only to pass it backwards, unfortunately Theo and Diaby are not much better. These players cannot Wengerball.

There was a few good performances, but overall I’m deeply dissapointed, how we are going to keep a clean sheet at the Emirates who knows??

Almunia 8.5 .. Excellent made save after save, good communication with the defence. Lehmann would have destroyed them or himself with their collective bad marking.

Sagna.. 7.. A good defensive performance, not sure if he is 100% fit yet. Offensively he has become a one trick pony.

Toure.. 7.. Thank god he is still fit, must be difficult trying to keep this defence together and try to motivate the midfield with some good surging runs.

Silvestre.. 5.. Didn’t play his worst game but not good enough at this level, he should have been used against the Fulhams etc, to give Gallas a rest now it’s too late.

Gibbs.. 8.. Top defending against world class players, it funny watching the show pony running towards his own goal because his stepovers didn’t work.

Song ..7.5 Wow super performance good interceptions, starting to pass incisively too. I would like to see him man mark slightly tighter.

Nasri.. 6 .. Out of position, he could play the holding roll but why start the experiment now?

Fabregas.. 6.. Opposite of the above…

Walcott.. 4.. Sorry Theo you cannot live up to your hype, Eboue would have been a better bet.

Diaby..  4.. A round peg in a square hole everywhere he plays, should have been supporting the striker or on the bench.

Ade ..2 ..  Gave it the gob before the game, what a waste of space, If I had the choice of Bendtner plus Dudu or this lazy tosser and Diaby the former would get my vote every time.

Subs 10 poxy minutes.. Bendtner and Dudu..

Has lucky Mr Wenger learnt from this?  I very much doubt it..

Sorry I am not around much at the moment by the way ..

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Ade-out the back door

April 28, 2009

The summer transfer window was a difficult one for the majority of Gooners to swallow. We saw players that were and integral part of our dynamic midfield AKA Hleb, Gilberto and Flamini leave and we saw nobody of note brought in to replace them…..Samir Nasri, a young unknown talent from France was our only major signing and Wenger papered over the cracks in the rest of the squad by adding crocks such as Silvestre and Bischoff(who)… For many Gooners the season was doomed from the start…. Most of us knew we’d need more than an unknown French Starlet and a £5mil 17 year old Aaron Ramsey to fill the gaps left by the losses we endured, including long term injuries to Rosicky and Eduardo…Yet the biggest regret coming into many Gooners minds is the Adebayor saga.

Adebayor has never been known as a lethal assassin, out and out striker, but more of a plan B striker….used to come off the bench and act as a battering ram against stubborn defences to let our more technical, gifted players such as Cesc, Rosicky and Robin rip them apart. Yet last year due to injuries to Dudu and Robin, Adebayor found himself as our number one striker and he bagged himself 30 goals. Plan B had without choice become plan A, but with a midfield of Rosicky, Cesc, Hleb and Flamini playing beautiful football behind him, tearing teams apart and putting his chances on a plate, it wasn’t hard for any striker to hit that amount. Bearing in mind he still missed half of them ‘on a plate’ chances, such is his pathetic finishing!!!

To be honest I was astounded when I heard that teams such as Milan and Barca were ready to come in for him with a £20-30mil bid, like most of us were I presume and the first three words that crossed my mind were SELL, SELL, SELL!!!!!!!!

I was even more astounded when Ade, with a little help from his agent, was whoring himself around Europe and demanding the same wages as a certain Thierry Henry to stay at our beloved club. The first three words to cross my mind  then was SELL SELL SELL!!!!!!

Adebayor knew he had Wenger by the short and curlies… We were a team already rocked with key departures of Hleb(cough cough) and Flamini, we were a team with long term injury and fitness doubts to other key strikers in Robin and Dudu and we were a team with no other attacking cover other than unproven youngsters in Vela, Bendtner and Theo.

Surprise, surprise, the bid for Ade was rejected and he was given a new improved, bumper, triple your money wage rise…. After one good extremely lucky season????? I was furious with him and I bet I wasn’t the only one. Then again I bet Wenger was seething too… Ade showed tremendous amount of bottle to do what he did and under the circumstances he got away with it.

The only thing Ade didn’t think of is that he had another 5 seasons to go and prove he was a top, top striker at a top, top club like Arsenal.

The new wage that Ade was rewarded with also came the extra burden that Ade had put himself as the clubs top striker, therefore meaning he was numero uno and he was now expected to hit 30 goals every season, such as a certain Thierry Henry. We all know this was never going to happen and i think Wenger did too.

Ade isn’t the type of striker who can make a goal for himself, he relies on others to do it for him and without the likes of Rosicky and Hleb in the team and with new boy Nasri still adapting to the English game, he has struggled. Plan B has now with choice become Plan A, but hes too stupid to be a Plan A striker. The beautiful, fast flowing, on the deck football that we have become so accustomed to and well renowned for around Europe under Wenger, is almost non existent with Ade in the team….His poor work rate, poor first touch and overall lack of intelligence means all our good build up play is stifled when it comes to the final third…..he gets caught offside more times than he can count and he cant finish his dinner… The one thing that made him so effective last season was his work rate, that was 75% of his game, but that has arguably disappeared along with his goals and we are now stuck with a lump on the pitch and a lump on the wage bill too…

Ade continues to state his undying love for the club,this is simply because he knows he’s not been value for money this season…. yet he says to be linked to Milan was like being told Beyonce was after his heart…..Something tells me we are to expect another one of his pantomimes this summer…

If this happens again I expect everything to be different this time…..Robin has proved his fitness….. Dudu, although not yet fit (and Wenger has appeared to have wrapped him in bubble wrap along with Rosicky until next season) is remarkably healed and has already started scoring goals that will be remembered in the annals of Arsenal history(Burnley FA Cup)… Bendtner is rapidly proving he can do Ade’s job(even miss chances like Ade, but he is younger, hungrier and is on a lower wage) and we have Vela, Theo and now a true, humble superstar in  Arshavin, who can all play striker. Even without Ade in the team we still are left with 6 forwards….. and if we include Simpson(who does actually love the club and will run his arse off if he gets the chance) we have 7.

Adebayor pissed Wenger off in the summer and I think he pissed most Gooners off too. Hes done naff all this season and that was foreseen by many of us…. Ade will be sold this summer…The only problem is what team in their right mind would still pay 20mil for him and match his wages???? Are you listening Man City???


Arsenal Cruise to Victory

April 26, 2009

If today’s game were a barbeque then the Arsenal players would have been laying on sun beds holding colourful cocktails with little umbrellas in their hands while Middlesbrough, the sacrificial lamb, were slowly being roasted over hot coals?

This was a day by the pool, a stroll in the park, a cruise: Arsenal were in complete control from the first minute until the last; we were treated to flashes of vintage Wengerball: fast, accurate, fluid inter play, of a standard that we haven’t witnessed for what seems like an eternity.

Middlesbrough seemed to be almost resigned to their fate of championship football next season, putting up a feeble challenge and therefore making ideal opponents in preparation for our big game on Wednesday not as ideal as if we had beaten the spuds by three clear goals —but certainly a very good second best.

Wenger’s team selection seemed to make more sense, it’s funny how it always does when we win; Middlesbrough are not a particularly tall or physical team and so our more skilful, low centre of gravity, players were chosen: Fabregas, Arshavin and Nasri’s silky skills were all on display in the midday sun at the Emirates stadium today.

I haven’t seen Fabregas look that happy in a while, I always felt he looked a bit sad after the departure of Hleb to the Barcelona bench. Fabregas is our equivalent of the gifted child at school surrounded by children of inferior talent. Rosicky should have supplied the mental stimulus, the footballing challenges to drive Fabregas on, to push him to want to keep improving; unfortunately we all know that sad story.

Enter Arshavin, the new boy, someone with the same intellect, some might even say that he is brighter, smarter, a quicker football brain and more deft of foot, Suddenly Fabregas has got someone to play with, a mental equal, he is back to playing with a smile on his face and loving it.

After putting the seal on two beautifully worked team goals Fabregas was taken off in an attempt to keep him fresh for Wednesday. The standing ovation he was given was delivered with more gusto than anyone has ever received since the new stadium opened.

Almunia: calm, collected, showed just how much we missed him. 7.5

Eboue: good game, not much to do, noticeable how he doesn’t get as tight as Sagna…Maluda! Played a superb pass for Cesc’s second. 7

Toure: King Kolo, he probably became the most important player on the pitch for us in the sense that he was the player we could least afford to get injured. 7.5

Silvestre: what he did he did well, what I thought was interesting was that when Djuorou came on he showed the kind of inexperience that led to mistakes the kind Silvestre doesn’t make, so I suppose you have a choice: Silvestre, experience and lack of pace or Djourou: pace and errors. 6.5

Gibbs: I am almost there with this player; he did better than I expected against Chelsea if he can contain Ronaldo on Wednesday he will have made one huge fan in me. 7.5

Walcott: getting better and better still can’t control the ball as well as he should. 7

Denilson: learning his trade. 6.5

Nasri: played a deeper role for the first time; I suspect that Wenger is trying to find a way of shoe horning all these talented players into the team. 7

Fabregas: two goals, happy boy. 8

Arshavin: his control is so superior to any other player in the team, when the ball is played to him he controls it instantly, this I accept should not be such a great feat, after all, that is what footballers are supposed to do, so to give this the right perspective I will have to say this; he controls it as well as Bergkamp. 8

Bendtner: he tries but unless you can control the ball Nicky when it comes to you then we the fans are going to continue to call out for an attacker who can. This game was made for Eduardo, tragic. 6


Sweet F.A.

April 26, 2009

Why, oh why, do we keep helping the Football Association as much as we do when we are constantly treated by them as second rate citizens?

Years ago, I was proud that out of all the physios in the country Fred Street was chosen for the England’s physio job as well; we didn’t need him when there was an England game, so it seemed okay to let help out the national team. This carried on when an ex goalkeeper of ours decided to pick up the first aid kit: Gary Lewin Arsenal and England physio for 13 years,  but not content with the sharing arrangement England decided to steal him. Isn’t that what Chelsea and Cashley got fined for?  Speaking of which, who pocketed the million pound fine from that little deal????

When England play their home matches, where do they train?  Oh yea London Colney, our training ground, paid for from the sale of one of those bloody foreign players that nobody likes us to use as it stifles English talent.

When Beckham the greedy money grabber who chose the USA over a European team, needed somewhere to train and keep fit for England, where did he train? London Colney. Come and train with our players and keep yourself fit, then you can break your contract with LA Galaxy and make yourself some more money. England can also sell a few shirts with Beckham on the back and they do alright out of it too.

As for Hull City…. we lent them London Colney to train at before the play off finals at Wembley last year.

Unbelievable, I am sick of it, ever since that 1990 incident with Man United when they started kicking the crap out of Nigel Winterburn which ended in a mass brawl, we obviously got docked more points from the FA than Man U. And thinking about it, was Paul Davis given a fair hearing when he broke Glenn Cotterells jaw? A nine match ban plus a fine knowing how placid Paul Davis was throughout his career something must have been said to provoke such venom from him.

So the next time there is an England home game and there is a phone call from the ponces asking to use our training ground they should be told to “PISS OFF!” get your own facilities, until you can treat us equally.

I don’t want preferential treatment; I just want what is fair. Stop being Mr Nice Guy!!!

On to today’s game, Middlesbrough….yawn: has there ever been a football club quite as dull….boring team, boring area, boring manager, boring kit… just plain boring….like the Spitting Image character of John Major: grey and boring.

Actually, Middlesbrough are victims of the FA walking in roughshod and stealing staff; they stole the great Steve McLaren who was doing an okay job there until the FA pinched him, paying only a couple of bob compensation.

Today, I reckon Mr Wenger OBE will rotate the forward line; it will be good to see Dudu given a game. Although, even if he scores a first half hat-trick I still cannot see him starting the game on Wednesday. I would take him off early; keep him fresh, and ready to come on if needed.  If we don’t score early a deflated performance is on the cards I will go for a 3-1 just.

Written by Avenell


Mozart

April 25, 2009

The idea of Thomas making a cameo appearance in last game of the season is the stuff that Arsenal supporter’s dreams are made off. A romantic image of the Czech star running out of the tunnel into the bright sunshine at Old Trafford springs to mind; the thought certainly brings a smile to my face and a wistful sigh from my mouth. Then, I weigh up the odds of this happening and pinch myself out of my melancholy daze as I realise that the chances are zero.

rosicky2

One of the things that hasn’t been acknowledged is just how frustrated Wenger must have been, at being given, what seems like so much conflicting information, over the last year from the various medical staff, employed by Rosicky, Arsenal and the Czech Republic’s national team, as to when he was likely to return. Wenger has made announcements all season that Rosicky will return at this date or that only to find himself embarrassingly having to back peddle when the Czech captain failed to appear.

There are certain elements of the blog-sphere that seem to revel in the idea that Wenger made a mistake by buying him in the first place using the 6.5 million price tag as conformation that there must be something wrong with him while conveniently failing to acknowledge that Rosicky had a clause in his contract that allowed him to leave at the aforementioned fee.

The crux of the issue is this: is Wenger to blame for not replacing him earlier? It seems to me that the answer to that question balances on your view as to whether you believe that Wenger knew that Rosicky was going to be out for so long. The answer surely must be “No”. Wenger stated that he expected Rosicky to have played 80% of the games this season and this, which, by the way, would have meant that Denilson would have made the same amount of appearances that Ramsey has this season; the correct amount if you ask me, he is a player in development that has had more responsibility than was good for him, the team or our season. I digress, Wenger obviously didn’t realise the extent of the damage to Rosicky and as soon as he did he acted and bought Arshavin.

In a recent interview Wenger was very determined in his tone when he said the he would not play again this season. I sense a change in the attitude at the club towards Rosicky. I got the feeling that Wenger was not prepared to put himself in the position of being embarrassed by risking the possibility of having to watch Rosicky limp off yet again for the sake of a cameo.


In Praise of Silvestre.

April 23, 2009

As much as it is becoming more and more fashionable for Arsenal supporters to eulogise over how wonderful the Manu squad system is; I would like to remind them that they almost lost the league recently because of their lack of defensive depth. When both Ferdinand and Vidic were injured they went scratching around the barrel and came up with Evans and Gibson, ever heard of them? No.

The idea that they wouldn’t have sold Silvestre if he was any good is a catchy little sound bite but it is lazy and totally inaccurate. I can only assume that the people who trot this out are unaware that it suggests a greater level of nous on the part on the mancs. Now some Arsenal supporters, and I use the term loosely, may be comfortable with that; but to me, this has the same effect as a cats claws being dragged down a black-board.

Here is what I suggest happened. After many years of loyal service the mancs explained to Silvestre at the beginning of the season that his chances of playing were limited and so out of respect they let him leave on a free transfer in order that he could get the best wage deal possibly for himself: very fair in my opinion.

Lots of Arsenal supporters were crying out at the beginning of the season that we need to buy experience; there are few more experienced than Silvestre; and yet, he arrived to a chorus of complaints.

Against Liverpool, he was up against the best centre forward in the world, we know this, of course, because of how many Arsenal supporters sing his praises at any available opportunity. Sylvestre had a torrid time. But it is worth remembering that not so long ago the dippers scored four goals against the chavs and they had Alex playing.

Calls for new defenders are the order of the day but I ask myself do these people actually think of the practicalities of signing more defenders. Take Brede Hangeland of Fulham, a very popular name on the wish list; do you really think he would be interested in coming to a club where he may well be expected to sit on the bench for most of the season?

There was an interesting conversation on the site the other day: someone was stressing the importance of building up defensive partnerships: the names of Ferdinand and Vidic came up; ours would naturally be Gallas and Toure. The point was that partnerships develop over time, they have to be nurtured and persevered with in order to get the best out of them; this is not a radical idea. I suspect that most managers aim to achieve a stable partnership; equally, I suspect that most players understand that that is what a manager will be aiming for. So it is reasonable to guess that Toure and Gallas knew at the beginning of the season that they were going to be the main pairing that Wenger was going to prioritise throughout the season.

So if Hangeland were signed and by some good fortune Gallas and Toure didn’t get injured he could find himself wasting his career away on the bench. Ahhh, I hear you say, but there are always injuries. This is true and if there were then Djourou, who is a far better long term prospect than Hangeland any way, would play.

So now Hangeland has got to sit on the bench and wait for Gallas, Toure and Djourou to get injured before he gets a game and that could easily mean that he sits there twiddling his thumbs all season long. What self respecting footballer wants to do that unless he is 17 and is prepared to wait for his chance. In short, unless Hangeland was going to replace Gallas or Toure (in a Sol Campbell way) then there is no way, if he has a modicum of self respect, would want to come to Arsenal……..I would suggest that we are fortunate to have Silvestre.

This post is by London!


Superman wears Arshavin Pyjama’s…….

April 22, 2009

I wont dwell on this point too long, as its been widely debated around the blogs for a few days….. but I’d like to start of with…..Where was he Saturday Arsene??????   Why was he rested when he didn’t play Wednesday anyway???     All I can say is that Chelsea got off lightly and was throwing the semi really worth a point at Anfield?????

Lets leave that one there…

Onto the game….and wow, what a game…The pre match anticipation after what happened at the weekend left me burning with a desire for our lads to stuff the ‘Dippers’ on their own patch and end their title dreams there and then, and although my head was saying no chance, my heart was saying stick it right up ’em…..if we aren’t going to win anything, then neither are they…..

As the team sheets came in I wasn’t surprised to see Arshavin and Song back…as well as Gerrard out for Liverpool and although a little confidence had been restored, I was still apprehensive about what the outcome was going to be….I expected Liverpool to come at us, and I wasn’t surprised…..

I wont go into detail with the game because I’ll be here all day with all the action that went on…

Basically…they were better…..we were woeful but we scored. Then they scored and they scored again, we scored… Kelsey fainted and  we scored again, they scored, we scored and they scored…  the ref added on 6 minutes to let them score again but we held on….

Ratings….

Fabianski…8….Liverpool had 14 attempts on target and our young Pole was big, strong and brave….he made a couple of errors but kept the score down to four when it could have been 10……he could of sank or swam tonight after his crazy show at the weekend and he defiantly swam….against the tide…..

Sagna…4….I don’t know whether he came back from injury too early or whether he’s a one season wonder…but he is nowhere near the standards of last year and made mistakes in this game that makes Eboue look our best RB….don’t forget Wenger once said that Eboue cant defend!!!!!!

Kolo…6…Tries hard every game and has been in good form…wasn’t his best game but Torres is one of the best strikers in the league.. if not the best…so I never expected a blinder anyway…

Fishead…2…Fuck off

Gibbs…7…Grows in stature as he gains experience…lets not forget he’s been thrown in at the deep end and he is getting experience in the big games….the defence overall was all over the place but the left side wasn’t the problem….

Nasri….6….In and out of the game…always looks better when he comes inside…but goes missing a lot on the wing…

Cesc…5…Wasn’t in the game again….never is when he plays behind the front man…he got another assist but his overall game was poor and he doesn’t look comfortable at all…

Denilson…4…’Mr Stats’ doesn’t know that hes supposed to stop the opposition from having a free run at defenders…not give them the ball cheaply in his own half and watch them go…. I’m sick of being told he’s our best player because the stats say so…. hes not… end of… we played better when he went off…..

Song…7…Not his best performance in recent weeks but he was better than Liverpool’s 18mil defensive midfield star Mascherano….I thought the rest Wenger gave him may have stopped his momentum but after a shaky start got better and looked pretty solid for most of the game….

Arshavin….20….Yes that’s right…20…their my ratings and i’ll do what i want and this man is gold dust… 4 shots, 4 goals, right foot, left foot… gamebreaker… potential match winner….superstar….surely Wenger understands that he has to play every game… see what 16mil quid gets you??? proven quality…he kept us in this game and got us the draw…. he deserved to be a winner with a perfromance like that but blame the defence for flapping about like a ‘fish’ out of water..

Bendtner…4…No comment…

subs

Theo…6….good change by Wenger for once at the right time….took Denilson off and added an extra outlet in Theo…it almost paid off

Diaby…wasn’t on long enough…

Overall i was disappointed we didn’t win the game, especially having scored what i thought the winner was in injury time…but it wasn’t to be and to be honest we didn’t deserve the points anyway….a draw isn’t a bad result at Anfield and I’ll sleep easy knowing Arshavin is in this team. Roll on Saturday…I cant wait to see him play again…

Too bad it wont be in the Champions League.. Manure must be relieved they don’t have to face him….

Have a good day guys, see you in the comments section….