The score line flattered Arsenal; no, the half time score line flattered Wigan.

At the rate our central defenders are dropping we are going to need a miracle of biblical proportions to hold back the tidal wave of attack we will face from now to the end of the season; so, today being what it is, what better miracle could we hope for other than Gallas to rise from the bed.

A topical point I thought I would try and get in somehow. Unfortunately, however, I don’t believe in miracles, although, I do believe in Arsène Wenger, not in an Arsène knows best kind of way — put Eboue on the left wing or Song at right back and see what happens — I can make my head spin around and spew green bile in such way so as to make the girl in the Exorcist seem no more angry than someone forgot to put sugar in her tea, no I believe in Arsène in such a way so as to use his squad intelligently enough to guide us to the end of the season.

Today’s line up had very little to do with Wigan and everything to do with Wednesday’s Champions league game with Villareal. The reason I emphasise this is because at first sight it might seem like a poor team selection reflected in the half time score line but Wenger clearly felt he had enough strength in depth to get a victory no matter what team he picked and used this trip to try every possible formation that he is likely to need for Wednesday, starting with Bendtner: someone that I don’t expect to start against Villareal, although, if Adebayor were to get injured Bendtner would be primed and ready to step into the breach. Equally, if late in the game and we still need a goal and high balls are the order of the day, then Bendtner could replace Walcott.

The only surprise for me was that there was no Eduardo yesterday even if it were for two minutes because if we need quick feet in the box then there is no better that our Crozilian.

The Gibbs debate is now academic if Djourou is out for the rest of the season and with our luck being what it is then Gibbs is going to have to be used at left back and good luck to him. Yesterday’s game should have done his confidence the world of good and although he made a pigs ear of his headed back pass he recovered well by pulling the Wigan player down in such a way that Tony Adams would have been proud of — and it was never a red card, Sylvestre was easily beyond him 😉

The Wigan goal was annoying in a way that we have suffered many times this season: indecision in the 18 yard box, but yesterday wasn’t about their goal it was about our comeback. I cannot recall a game in which Arshavin has played and we have gone behind; anyway, he clearly doesn’t like it and grabbed this one by the throat and sorted it out in a no nonsense Russian way. The assist for Theo’s goal was welcomed but we got a tantalising first glimpse of the eagerly anticipated interplay between Fabregas and the Russian Wizard the combination of which led to Sylvestre’s all important second goal.

When Wenger brought RVP on and effectively changed the formation to 4.4.2 he had a choice to make that I was very worried about; he was either going to have to take off either Denilson or Song. I was really pleased that Wenger took Denilson off not because I have a problem with him; he has come on leaps and bounds this season and has played a vital role; no, it’s because Denilson offers what Fabregas has in abundance whereas Song offers more defensively giving Fabregas the freedom to do what he does best. Our captain’s fitness is returning and he is getting closer to his masterful best.

Arshavin’s third goal, scored on the break, to which the commentator made the point that Arsenal have been scoring goals like this for three, four or five years; more accurately, the problem, which the commentator didn’t realise was that that goal was the first goal we have scored on a break in five years.
RVP played the ball out of defence to Adebayor who tore down the pitch only to make a sloppy pass that never reached Fabregas but fortunately Kumas played it into the path of Arshavin to score and rap up the points.

Which just leaves me with the fourth goal, oh joy of joys. There are many that feel the Song is not up to Arsenal standard and give sound reasons as to why, which I respect. Here’s another view: Song has made such great leaps forward to the point where he is now scoring goals, I wish him continued progress in the hope that he can make that position his own in the same way as Flamini did, and don’t forget that Flamini was ridiculed when first playing in the midfield that’s before he had his run at left back for those who may not remember.

Bring on Villareal

61 Responses to The score line flattered Arsenal; no, the half time score line flattered Wigan.

  1. JonJon says:

    bring on chelsea…. bring on them all… 🙂

    nice mate…i too prefer song to denilson…if theres a partner most suited to cesc its song….

  2. avenell says:

    Song is okay, as long as Cesc doesn’t start to mother him like at the start of the season..
    Song has proved he can pass a ball now and Cesc needs to trust him..

  3. rico01 says:

    Good read London

    Song over Denilson for me too, Cesc and denilson are too similar in style, but the master will always be Cesc.

    I still think we need a better player ahead of Song, and Song to be his understudy – but right now Song is a least playing a lot better, and its a bloomin good job he is 😉

  4. JonJon says:

    i still think we need another CM in the summer…song and denilson are adequate backup but they struggle the majority of the time…

    it takes them an hour to get to grips with the game….its ok going one nil down agains teams like wigan and villareal but if we leave it until the last half hour to start playing against chelsea and pool we could be out of the game….

    it needs adressing…we need to play well for 90mins…

  5. avenell says:

    Going back to Alonso “yawn” when he was on the wish list before. It was said that he could not play with cesc. I suggested that Cesc could play further up the pitch in a sort of deep DB10 role and that is where he seems to be since his return..

  6. JonJon says:

    if we want to stick to our technical play we should go for alonso again in the summer…if not then miguel veloso….

    plus veloso can play defence LB…and can take a sweet freekick….

    if wenger wants an enforcer then we need essien 😉

    he might go for inler again….

  7. chaf says:

    Good morning

    Good reporting London, and as AW said in that NOTW piece, he got taken by surprise with the amount of experience that was unavailable at this season, through transfer (he didn’t expect Flamini to go) and injury, so all the youngsters were running the team on their own.

    A bit like the film ‘Home Alone” and you can imagine Theo starring in that film!

    But they’ve done well, and are beginning to find their feet (which helps for footballers). Can you imagine any of Song, Denilson, Nik, Ramsey, Theo, being dropped singularly into the Invincible s? they would all survive surrounded by experience.

  8. peachesgooner says:

    …….but is that cescs best position, he may be playing higher up the pitch at the moment to conserve energy – really he wants to dictate the play more doesn’t he?

    Denilson was being groomed to be cescs no 2 and has taken on a lot this season with Flamini going, he had to become more defensive to play alongside cesc at the beginning of the season and then he had to assume the cesc role once cesc was injured. He has to be the un-sung hero of this season – I think rasp said that the other day – now if he and song can forge a partnership and we move in to Wengerball phase 2 they will both have a role to play.

  9. peachesgooner says:

    ……..imagine 4 up-front and Gibbs bombing forward too…….helps if we don’t concede an early goal though 😦

  10. peachesgooner says:

    ……before you ask……yes I am the architect of Wengerball phase 2 😆 😆 😆

  11. JonJon says:


  12. peachesgooner says:

    Do you think its too late to apply for the job 🙂

  13. JonJon says:

    just a tad peaches…

  14. peachesgooner says:

    …..ohhhhhhhhhhh, never mind eh, I’ll just bathe in reflective glory……….

  15. Rasputin says:

    Afternoon Roadsters,

    Good topical and seasonal post London 😉

    I have to be honest and say that I thought the half time scoreline was about right on the balance of play. Once again we improved markedly in the second half and we seem to be getting a bit of luck too! Its true as JonJon said that sometimes the younger midfielders seem to take half a game to settle down and play with confidence. I suggested a month ago that Song could well mature into the perfect midfield partner for Cesc. Denilson may suffer unfortunately as the players return because as peaches said, he is naturally more of a cesc than a flamini although he works really hard and covers acres of ground.

    Is it true that JD is out for the rest of the season.

  16. JonJon says:


    EE Kolo Silvestre Bac

    Theo Song Cesc Nasri

    RvP Ade

    team for villareal….

  17. peachesgooner says:

    hi rasp – if its true about JD does that mean that Phillipe may have to be called back, surely we can’t rely on Sylvestre to stay fit for the rest of the season……..

  18. avenell says:


    Eboue.. Sagna.. Toure.. Silvestre.

    Theo.. Song .. Cesc .. Nasri..



  19. JonJon says:

    can on loan players be called back in between windows???
    i suppose it depends if they have a call back clause in the contract…

    sometimes when teams take players on loan for the season they have clauses in the loan deals saying they cant be recalled or they cant play against the team they are on loan from… etc etc…

  20. Rasputin says:

    Hi Peaches,

    I don’t think it likely Sylvestre will be able to play every game until the end of the season, but on the other hand you couldn’t expect Big Phil to walk back into the side and perform after a season away so I’m sure AW will make do with what he’s got. Maybe Traore could be pulled back in as he doesn’t seem to be playing for Pompey – maybe he’s injured too?

  21. JonJon says:

    thats another option ave….doesnt look too bad either…

    to say we are getting short on numbers at the back we still have alot of options….even song can play CB..

  22. avenell says:

    Or just pull song back.. that will leave the right side of defence settled..
    What about bringing Traore back too, Is he better than Gibbs?.. a bit late I know..

  23. kelsey says:

    hello everyone,
    got a few personal things to take care of at the moment,will be back later.

  24. peachesgooner says:

    ave – that back four looks a bit scary – so many changes!!!!

    I’m going for







  25. Rasputin says:

    I thought Song’s performance in the main yesterday was not quite as good as of late (testament to his improvement), but he could yet be the piece in the jigsaw that sees us gain honours this season if he fills in at CB

  26. JonJon says:

    we should just sign lescott in the summer and we wont have this next season.. 😉

  27. avenell says:

    Sagna has played in that position and Silvestre has LB.. My concern would be Toure playing left side..

    It was only my option if we didn’t trust Gibbs..

  28. JonJon says:

    the manager has so many decisions to make now, really he has, the comment in the post about wenger having to use the squad intelligently was spot on….

  29. Rasputin says:

    There’s an ominous silence surrounding JD’s injury. Nothing on NN or

  30. peachesgooner says:

    Good point about Song going to CB.

    Will Denilson be able to play along-side Cesc now if Diaby for example isn’t fit……

  31. JonJon says:

    i still think we should give gibbs a go….it wasnt the best performance in the world yesterday but the only goal we conceeded wasnt his fault was it???? it was the fault of the more experienced defenders and weve been defending song, denilson and bendter all season so gibbs should be given the same chance…. just no against Villareal and Chelsea… 🙂

    well, id start him at villareal because we are at home and it will be an easier atmosphere for him but chelsea nnnooooooooooooooooooooo… 😉

  32. avenell says:

    I don’t know who to play agaist chelsea .. if Drog-breath is fit.. 😦

  33. JonJon says:

    chelsea should be worrying about their own defence….

    they just conceeded 3 goals at home to bolton

  34. avenell says:

    They moved Kevin Davis forward and he gave Shoplifterson the right runaround.. 🙂

  35. JonJon says:

    im off to watch the everton villa game i’ll be back later….

  36. avenell says:

    Check your in box!!

  37. Rasputin says:

    In the old days we could have brought on the grimster to do a job on Drogba – I loved the way he would give a player a deadleg on the halfway line so as not to concede a dangerous freekick 🙂

  38. avenell says:

    I liked him Ras.. Who was the Man U player he headbutted to get sent off?

  39. Rasputin says:

    All of them I hope 🙂 I know its not cultured football, but it is good to have a ‘hardman’ available in the side…..

  40. avenell says:

    Nelson Vivas was a bit of a nutter too..

  41. avenell says:

    Hehe we moan about Almunia.. But that Tim “whoop, whoop, brrrrr ding, ding” Howard is useless.. 😉

  42. rico01 says:

    Afternoon all, just watched yesterdays game, and we did get a little fortunate – however, that is football, it does make a change for us to get the fortune… Gibbs was a strange one, and Arsene is right, it could have gone either way, but Fabianski was out and would have got the ball me thinks…

    Song and his goal, well I thought Nik, Ade and robin could all learn from that finish, jink into the box and shoot – great goal, the rest of his game needs to step up one more gear for me, but then every players needs to take that step up too, and before Wednesday..

    Arshavin – what a treat to see a player shoot before having the need to control it, flick it, try and get around another ten players…..

    Cesc – He looked tired and ill, he seems weak !
    Gibbs – please do not play him at LB against Villarreal Arsene, we will get destroyed and so will his confidence.

    Almunai v’s Fabianski – almunia would not have let that shot for the goal go passed him….

    Nik 😦
    Theo – the goal saved his performance

    Anyway, you get my drift…

  43. rico01 says:

    3-3 – hope it stays that way, best result for us guys and gals 😛

  44. rico01 says:

    all quiet, no doubt you are watching the match, I am offski, catch you later ..

  45. Rasputin says:

    3 all is the perfect result for the toffees v villa game. Leaky defences and only 1 point each 🙂

  46. kelsey says:

    Hello again,
    just been thinking about the Villarreal game,and the lastest news is not good on Djorou.
    I am trying to think logically about our best available line up,and it’s not easy.Villarreal will have to attack as they obviously have to score,and in my opinion for this game at least,attack is the best form of attack.Though AA isn’t eligable we have many striking options and we have to play 4-4-2. I thought it strange that Bedntner started and not Ade yesterday,and there were similarities to the away game at villarreal were we literally stumbled out of the box,and weren’t allowed to settlle from the off.On the other hand lady luck in some perverse way is helping us,dispite our ever ending injuries.AA really brings a new dimension to the team,why didn’t we sign him last summer.European quarter final nights are not for the feint hearted and one has to hope that if Fabianski,Gibbs and Silvestre play they will not be unsettled,because let’s face it all of them looked ill at ease,especially in the first half.if djorou is unfit who will take his place.?Could silvestre play at left back ? I am glad it’s not my decision.

  47. kelsey says:

    attack is the best form of defence

  48. kelsey says:

    Hi Ras,
    couldn’t watch the game,but seems like a perfect result for us.

    Sorry rico,missed you point about Senna not playing,a big plus for us.

  49. kelsey says:

    In old money it is 73 degrees here today,regardless of what others may think.The beaches are packed,and you have to blink to realise that we are only in mid April.The good thing is that be end october/beginning november it might rain. 🙂

  50. avenell says:

    Unbelievably we have a really nice day again, t shirts etc.. Mill spent yesterday in the sea and sliding down the sand dunes.

  51. avenell says:

    Oh and Kelsey.. nice post within the post.. 🙂

  52. kelsey says:

    it wasn’t meant to be a post,just my views all put together. 😉

  53. avenell says:

    I am going down the pub for one.. to sit in the garden.
    I will be back for post 2 at 7 ish.. 🙂

  54. Rasputin says:

    The sun hasn’t really come out here all day and the BBC 4 day forecast is for showers every day 😦
    I went for a long dog walk and was frozen when I got in.

    Do any of the Spanish correspondents want to do a home swap?….pleeeassse

  55. peachesgooner says:

    Never mind the spanish correspondents even ave went to sit in the garden at the pub brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

  56. peachesgooner says:

    rasp – more body parts found near you – at Standon this time

  57. Rasputin says:

    Hi Peaches,

    I only caught the end of the story – looks like they’re finding the victim piece by piece. As I said to ave a couple of weeks ago, I suspect the ‘travellers’ are behind this….its their kind of home grown justice!

  58. Rasputin says:


    ave wants you to design his garden. Can you put in a sauna and massage area and a swimming pool with one of those caribbean style bars in the middle for when I come to stay 🙂

  59. peachesgooner says:

    sounds lovely rasp – so no pond then, how about a rill 😆

  60. avenell says:

    Ladies and gentlemen.. I have just got back… NEW POST

  61. rico01 says:

    I cant keep up ! 😉

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