Its Raining Men…

October 31, 2009

Well it will have to if the big city of London has had the rainfall we have had here in Berkshire!!

The Daily Telegraph, well the Belfast version reports Cesc has signed a pre-contract agreement with Barca! Worried for a second, but then I saw the word ‘Adeybayor’ in the same sentence – you know him, the one who feels he has the right to an opinion about us! Well I soon dismissed it from my mind! I wish he would just mind his own……!!

There are a couple of other snippets around, but today is about the biggest game yet in our season, we HAVE to beat Spurs today otherwise my week and yours will be just dreadful, in fact until we were able to get revenge I would feel dreadful. But it’s not going to happen, we are going to win!

Good old ‘Arry has added his pennies worth to the rubbish that Robbie Keane has spouted this week.
He reckons, not that his opinion is worth anything, that we won’t win the premiership with a team of kids – Arry, this is not a CC game, the kids won’t be on the park! You will see Cesc, Arshavin, Rosicky, Sagna, Gallas, Vermaelen, Van Persie, Eduardo, Song and a few others !

Where are the kids in there ‘Arry? Go and worry about your own team, but thanks for giving our side an extra bit of fuel to fire them up for today’s game, just what the doctored ordered!

Arsene says he has already chosen his goal keeper – “I’ve decided who will start but I won’t tell you,” he said at Friday’s press conference.
The manager also confessed that while Mannone has got the nod recently, Almunia has given him a persistent dilemma.

“I’m always tempted to start with Almunia,” said the Frenchman. “But he was sick for a long time and it takes some time to come back. That says to me that it will be Mannone 😉

The back five kind of picks itself, I don’t think he will play Eboue because of his last game against the spuds and I don’t think he will ‘risk’ Gibbs at left back – I would though personally as Lennon is out.

Mannone
Sagna Gallas TV Clichy

On to the midfield – as long as the names Eboue and Diaby are not in there, I will be happy. We have so much talent available, start playing them instead of persisting with the two mentioned, please Arsene!!

If he plays 4-3-3 – I hope he plays

Cesc Song Rosicky/Merida

And then the front three

Van Persie Eduardo Arshavin

Or front two in a 4-4-2

Nasri Cesc Song Rosicky/Merida

Van Persie Arshavin

The Spuds are going to play Bentley, he will up for this in a big way, just because it’s us, and because he will soon be sold and will be putting himself on the market for a big club – maybe Bolton or Blackburn, I’m sure fat Sam would have you David! Song needs to put him in his place early!

Arshavin needs to show a bit more interest, if he doesn’t will we have a strong bench and I hope he is substituted early enough for the oncoming player to have a chance to get involved. In fact the same goes for any of our team today.
It’s a Derby and a big one, we fans are ready for this, let’s hope the players are! TV and Gallas need to be on fine form and keep Crouch at bay, he is their big threat in the air but if we as a team stop him being provided with the ball we will win.
If Robbie Keane gets in the penalty area, no dodgy tackles please and no sneezing, he will go down for a penalty at the slightest touch or breeze he feels 😉

So that’s it, just over five hours to go until kick off, it’s live on Sky Sports so that is good news for those of us who can’t go to the game, those who are lucky enough, I hope it’s a fantastic game of football with many a goal scored by us.

I hope we get to see Gomes picking the ball out of his net many many times.

In my heart I am going for a win, maybe even a convincing win too.

But my head tells me….. It will abandoned due to the dreadful weather..

I reckon we will see a few tricks for them to deal with, but a few treats for us fans…. 😛

Have a great day Roadsters, let’s hope today gives us three very big points..

Advertisements

Rain in Spain – Who cares, Merida is going to Reign at Arsenal ….

October 30, 2009

I am still smiling after the wonderful result we ‘fought’ for the other night. Many ‘paps’ said we were lucky as Liverpool should have had a penalty in the last few seconds when Big Phil thought he was playing netball, and maybe they are right, but I think we should have been awarded one too when Watt was held back in the penalty area – so justice done..!

Moving on to a few snippets of gossip this morning, that boy called Merida has been interviewed and he has made it clear he wants to sort out his contact and stay with Arsenal so for me that is wonderful news. Its even on Arsenal.com so it holds a little bit of truth.

On the flip to tat, The ever reliable Sun Newspaper report that Athletico Madrid are going to offer us £10M for the same player – I know we don’t trust The Sun, but I hope this might just push Ivan into sorting his contract extension out sooner rather than later, we cannot afford to let such a talented player leave.

Staying with the same newspaper, they have an article which suggests we are poised to swoop for Torino’s highly-rated defender Angelo Ogbonna. The boss is said to be a big admirer of the Italy Under-21 star and wants to strengthen his defence when the transfer window reopens in January.

Ogbonna, 21, has been earning rave reviews in Serie B this season and is regarded as one of the best young talents in Italy. I have never heard of the guy, but if it is in anyway true, then I am just glad to hear/read something which suggests that Arsene is looking for a defender. About time too boss!!

Crouch and Keane are making noises before the little game tomorrow – in fact Keane has suggested that the Spuds bench is stronger than ours – I posted somewhere that it would have to be, Tom Huddlestone sits on it!! 🙂 But seriously, strong bench or not Robbie, our first team is better than yours and that’s what counts!

I have a feeling Almunia could be back for the game tomorrow, I think it would have been Fabianski but he has now been ruled out for three weeks with a thigh problem. More on all that tomorrow 😉

That’s about it I think for the early morning gossip – other than Jay Simpson is doing really well at QPR, you never know he may just surprise a few and earn his place alongside Robin next season .. Ok, I know no-one will agree, but he is the nearest thing to Wrighty we will ever get to see!!


Ramsey ready, Nasri back, Fabianski fit to …..

October 28, 2009

Yesterday The Boss stated in the press that the player we are all desperate to see be given a chance is ready to play. Yep, he says Ramsey has grown into a man and expects him to play 15 -20 games for the first team this season?? Well Arsene, he won’t reach the target you have set him if you don’t play him will he?? You have said now though and publicly, so can we please leave Diaby on the bench at best, and leave Eboue to play in his natural position at RB when you need him to and start to play the lad! After all, Ramsey is a natural midfielder isn’t he??

Nasri makes his first start tonight, so its ‘only the CC’ but I don’t care, the man is back and he could just be the other half of what has been missing the last two games. I honestly think with him and Tomas back fit we will return to winning ways in the league, starting with Tottenham on Saturday. Of course, the best thing about Nasri being back and Tomas being fit means that AW won’t have to play Diaby and won’t have to play Eboue on the left of midfield – Cripes, I hope he sees it that way too. Then of course we have Theo to come back too. That all sounds a little bit better…. 😉

Another player making his comeback is Fabianski – our No2 keeper – well he was, but now Arsene has said that the fight for the gloves is between Almunia, Mannone and Fabianski. He says ‘Mannone stays in goal at the moment as we are winning – yes, its as straight forward as that – simples’ 😛

‘Arry’ has confirmed Lennon is out for the little derby at the weekend which is good news as he is their biggest threat in my opinion, Defoe too as the lad is banned.

On to tonight, the funny accents are back in London as the kids take on Liverpool in the CC. The only news on the opposition front is that Stevie ‘woe is me me’ is out, Mascerano is out but their new £20M midfield man will be on the bench ready to make his mark.. Yeah right, he is unfit, has played for ages and he shouldn’t cause too much trouble, should he??

As London said last night, this result won’t make a lot of difference to the first team, but I for sure would start to feel a whole lot better if we can will this game tonight, and win it well. You never know, win, and the big boys sitting in the crowd watching may just learn something from them – I have always believed it’s never too late to learn, and you cant rule out footballers in that belief..

The difference we will see tonight in the team I think will be a crop of players who want to show how good they are, want to prove they are worth playing amoung the big boys, want to play for eachother and ultimately want to win at all costs. I don’t expect them to be strolling about tonight wondering what to spend their big salaries on, no, we will see a team that will be focused until the end, and I honestly believe they will beat The Dippers and go through to the next round.

My team would be

Fab/Almunia
Eboue Senderos Silvestre Gibbs
Ramsey Coquelin Merida
Nasri Eduardo Vela

Just read that Wilshere is out for the match 😦

3-1 winners 😛


Hammers!!! (That Was a Real Ball Pein).

October 26, 2009

Last year when we was going through our barren (pre Arshavin) spell if someone had said would you be happy with a 2-2 draw away against the Whammers I would have taken that all day long. But this year we have progressed as a team, a team that can pass forwards and create chances with ease. We still lack the mental capacity to finish games off.

A little niggle but I don’t like us playing in the white shirts as much as I hate us playing in the blue ones we did on Tuesday.. I cannot clearly identify us in them, it was like us playing Fulham in our Highbury farewell redcurrant ones.  I’d like to see all new kits next year,

The commentators yesterday were just dying for West Ham to get back into the game… (yes you Alan “Smudger” Smith) I was thinking haha shut up, but in the back of my mind was the AZ result. A two goal advantage for us is clearly not enough, as soon as the opposition get a goal they grow 3  inches 😳 in stature and we instead of tightening the game up we go for the jugular and try to revenge the goal. Mannone distributes the ball like we are losing by a goal with five minutes to go in the Champions League final.. Chill out man!!
We was in total control of the game, and deservedly so, West Ham although they are writhing at the bottom of League at the moment were playing like a team  far above the position they are in.

I really don’t know what is worse, playing like we did and grinding out draws like we did last January, or playing super football and just chucking it all away in the last 15 mins.
The latter is certainly more frustrating.

I don’t think it is tactics, I believe it is a mental problem. We need some anger or desire in there somewhere.

Mannone.. 5 .. Sorry mate but you should have punched that ball away that led to the goal away with two hands and your distribution was too fast when we were well in control of the game. On top of that turning into George Best when you are given a back pass isn’t too good either, you need to hoof it, there are some quick players out there who will punish you big time.

Sagna.. 7.. Played pretty well and took advantage of West Hams left back on numerous occasions, it may be me but I find him a bit predictable now and I wonder if the opposition do too.

Gallas.. 7.5.. Pretty solid performance, and a TA6 type goal he did his bit.

Vermaelen.. 8.. Probably the best Arsenal player on the pitch yesterday oozes class. Every time he passes the ball it always looked to have been well thought out, That give and go was where he ended up on the left wing was very Vieira like and I would love to see him given a chance in the midfield alongside Cesc.

Clichy 7. I have read other reports and I have to disagree with them, I thought he played quite well, very sharp. He just gets a bit lost in the final third of the pitch.

Song. 7. Played pretty well, broke up the attacks well as usual. I just wish he wasn’t as clumsy, some refs feel sorry for him I suspect but others will be more ruthless.

Diaby.. 4 He was very Diaby like.

Fabregas.. 7.. He played okay, but he was missing his partner in crime Rosicky. His confidence is high at the moment as he is trying some audacious long passes. unfortunately the receivers are little AA and Mr “don’t jump” RvP..

Eboue. 4.  This bloke is winding me up again with the theatrical diving and putting his hand in the air like Ljungberg used to do when his speed had gone.
The referee didn’t help by encouraging him, it was as if the yellow card was connected to Eboue’s arse by magicians string and every time Eboue went down out popped the card.

Arshavin.. 7 He could have been the man of the match if his chance had of gone in, but they didn’t and he wasn’t.

Van Persie.. 7 Started out very dangerously scored a easy goal when England’s No1 flapped, then just disappeared, I popped out for a bit and thought he must have been subbed.

Subs.

Bendtner. Should have been brought on earlier, he couldn’t pick the team up after the heads dropped.

Eduardo. As above, never got a sniff.

We are still up there with Man U and Chelsea though. and the Spuds lost things could be worse.

At least we have the kids in the pissy beer cup coming up on Wednesday to cheer us up. A bit of a sweetener after a taste of bad medicine.


A Perfectly Good Sunday Ruined

October 26, 2009

Yesterday’s game was like one of those pre Christmas pantomimes in which the main character is unaware of an imminent danger but everyone in the audience can see exactly what is going on and cries out, it’s behind you, it’s behind you.

These situations are usually funny and so should this one have been, if drawing with West Ham, after being two up, wasn’t so utterly soul destroying.

In our pantomime, the main character is Wenger and our cries from the audience have been getting louder and louder since Alkmaar, it’s the team selection, it’s the team section.

The pattern is so predictable, Song breaks up the play, usually quite well, then passes to Fabregas who looks up; by this time, Van Persie and Arshavin are surrounded which leaves Diaby and Eboue; Fabregas having no faith in either of them tries the Hollywood pass to the Dutchman or the Russian, more often than not, without success. We lose possession and have to try to regain it. When Rosicky or Nasri are playing, Fabregas can pass with confidence knowing that he will get the ball back once he has moved into a better position. The result is usually devastating for the opposition.

I find Wenger’s comments disturbing such as “We need to learn how to kill of other teams”. The ruthlessness that is needed is in the team selection.

So what should he have done?


Happy Birthday Arsène …….

October 22, 2009

Sixty years ago today, our fine manager was born – Happy Birthday, maybe even you will raise a glass today, no doubt a few fans will 😛

I am sure most of us thought ‘Who the heck is this man?’ when he arrived at Highbury to take over from Rioch, and I am even more sure that many of us thought ‘He’ll never last’ – But he has and now having celebrated 13 years with the club, today he celebrates reaching the ripe old age of 60!!

I would say that 60 years old is a long way away for some of us, but best I don’t upset anyone 🙂

He had a little dabble at playing the game, but from seeing the names of the clubs he played for maybe he knew he would always be better at managing a team rather than playing for one – Mutzig, Mulhouse, Strasbourg were his employers during his playing days…

Strasbourg (youth), Cannes (assistant), Nancy, AS Monaco, Grampus Eight Nagoya were the clubs where he applied some of his magic as Manager.

In 1988 he won the French League championship with Monaco, the French Cup in 1991, and was voted French ‘Manager of the year’ in 1988.

On to Grampus Eight where he was Japan’s ‘Manager of the Year’ in 1995, Emperor’s Cup winner in 1996, Japanese Super Cup winner 1996 – Not bad I suppose 😉

And then in 1996 we all had the pleasure of being told this skinny man with spectacles bigger than my wine glasses would be our manager. Boy how he changed our club, the players followed his strict diet and gained a few years of their playing careers, the alcohol stopped flowing and even Merse had to sneak into the betting shop, that’s if he dared!!

So what has done for us then in the thirteen years that he has been at the helm? What has he achieved to make him more grey over the last few seasons, what can he look back on and toast it with a glass of the finest French Red on his 60th?

League champions in 1998, 2002, 2004,
FA Cup winners in 1998, 2002, 2003, 2005,
‘Manager of the Year’ in 1998, 2002, 2004

I have a cunning thought; all that is missing from the above is a Champions League Winners medal and a Carling Cup Winners Medal.

At the end of the season, still in Arsene’s 61st year, how many of us would be happy if those two missing medals are won?????

Go for it Arsene, bring us fans some happiness in May 2010 – do that and I am sure we will all want you here to raise a glass on your 70th..

Happy Birthday Arsene – You have a lovely day, you deserve it – I will be raising a glass to you later, actually, probably before ave gets out of bed!! 😛


Arsene, Please Bring This Experiment To An End

October 21, 2009

A draw against the Dutch champions is no bad thing or that’s what I keep telling myself anyway; the trouble is, no matter how many times I say it I still feels as though someone has just stolen something out of my child’s pram while I have been forced to watch, helpless to do anything about it.

The frustration that we all feel this morning is surely proof, if we needed any, of just how much progress has been made this season and just how much we expect.

Last night was a timely reminder of how important it is stay focused until the very last second, a little dig in the ribs if you like, to keep us on our toes, this may be painful but compared to some of the other results last night it is far better than the kick up the backside Barça and the dippers got – nothing like a bit of schadenfreude to lift the spirits.

We played, I am going with Kelsey on this one, average or certainly average compared to some of the performances we have put in this season.

Mannone was average, Sagna was average, although Gallas and Vermaelen were above average but Clichy was only average, Song was average, by his ever improving standards; Cesc, who had no one in midfield to help him was average by his own high standards, as were Arshavin and Van Persie; Eboue for all his good intentions is not going to win us games, I don’t want to do the usual anti-Eboue rant but players have limitations and nothing demonstrates this better than Eboue in the final third.

Which brings me to the biggest waste of space on the field, if this kind of slow paced, non physical, quick passing kind of game doesn’t suit Diaby then what kind of effing game does? The man offered nothing; he didn’t complement the defence, the midfield or the attack; his one advantage over other players who are far more deserving of that position is his height but when it was most needed he blew it: he was supposed to be marking Pelle for the final free kick in which they scored.

I have said on a few occasions that so long as Wenger finishes this experiment by Christmas and not too much damage has been done then all should be fine; last night should be the first window of the advent calendar opening.  We have two home games in the CL coming up and should still qualify at the top of the group.