Old McDonald Had a Farm……

Ok, so he is not called McDonald but he is Ronald, and after tonight, he will wish he had a farm πŸ™‚

So – three years ago, the Mighty Arsenal travelled to the Netherlands to play AZ Alkmaar in a β€˜show off game’ to mark the opening of the DSB Stadium. Three years have now gone by and tonight we play them again in what will is their UEFA Champions League debut season.

So far they have just the one point after losing to Olympiacos – no shame there, and a draw against Standard Liege, not a bad result for them there either really when you look back to our game against Liege…. Actually I don’t want to!

We sit looking very pretty at the top of the table, with a 100% record so far, I for one do not expect things to change after the match tonight – the only difference will be the three extra points alongside the clubs fine name..

One player from AZ could cause us a problem, that’s the ex Spud (does that mean he will have no feathers!!) Mounir El Hamdaoui, apparently he is in form and likes to score goals. One thing though, he won’t dislike us because of his connection to the potato heads, they treated him badly! Good old Martin Jol eh πŸ˜‰ But if his is good maybe we should go for him, the club’s owner is bankrupt so we could get him on the cheap…!!

Enough ink wasted on the opposition, let’s turn to us – a team on fire and scoring for fun, and it seems at any time any player feels like it. Great isn’t it??

Chary posed a good question today on AR –

β€˜Should Wenger be either ensuring early qualification and then easing off(to concentrate on the Premier League) or going for a top of the table finish so we get seeded in the next round of the Champions League?

What do you all think??

I say play the best eleven available going into every game right now, wins breed wins which breed confidence – and Arshavin himself has said our side need to be confident within themselves. I agree, and winning for me is the only thing that can make them truly believe that this year is going to be their year.

One trophy, maybe two, if injuries favor us for a change, maybe even three – who knows, that is a long time away. Tonight though, I honestly expect that the Mighty Arsenal’s big toe is left hovering over the big bowls – ready to drop in and be drawn out for the next round.. πŸ˜›

My team would be

Mannone
Sagna/Eboue TV Gallas Clichy
Wilshere Song Cesc Arshavin
Van Persie Cutie Carlos (peaches)

I know AW won’t pick that side though; he will include Eboue and Diaby.

I am going for a comprehensive away win, tonight we will tear the hearts from the players and fans in Holland and leave their fine country with them thinking – Wow, what a football team we have just played, what a lesson we have we have been given!

E. I. E. I O πŸ˜›

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129 Responses to Old McDonald Had a Farm……

  1. rico says:

    Woop Woop – 1-4

  2. charybdis1966 says:

    Ah there’s the new post Rico. I wouldn’t start with Wilshire, but as long as things are going ok I’d bring him on at about 55-60 mins gone; I reckon Wenger’ll put Diaby in that position.
    Other than that it’s probably a good selection although again I reckon Wenger will not start with Vela, he’ll probably have Eboue as you say.

  3. rico says:

    Dum-De-Dum
    Doo-Be-Dooooooooooooooooo

    We will win
    The Dippers will looooooooose πŸ™‚

  4. rico says:

    Hey chary, What do you make of the ex spud player? The pundits reckon Martin Jol made a real error by not playing him when he was there

    I agree, he will play Diaby as a second striker possibly, and Eboue on the right wing

  5. rico says:

    Reports on Sky suggest

    Almunia

    Sagna TV Gallas Clichy

    Diaby Cesc Song

    Eboue Robin Arshavin

  6. rico says:

    chary – your Meerkat comment was funny, I forgot to say, saorry 😦 I think old Jose Moanrinho sounds like a Meerkat πŸ˜‰

  7. London says:

    Good Post Rico

    Re the question: Wenger always does the same thing, as soon as we qualify he gives an opportunity to the up and coming players. If you think of the difficulty he must have in maintaining harmony among such a large squad of talented players this makes quite a lot of sense. And even more so when you consider that the up and coming players are Merida and Wishire who, on this basis, would be replacing Diaby and Eboue on the wing.

  8. rico says:

    Hi London, how is the head ?

    But I say, secure the win each game, then use the up and coming, secure the CL top spot and then use the up and coming. I thought the question posed by chary was a cracker, and I am not sure there is a right or wrong answer..

    Merida is yet to sign, AW will be cunning over the next few weeks, tonight he will feature at some stage I am sure…. Well, I hope actually πŸ˜‰

  9. peachesgooner says:

    Hi rico – thats a tenuous connection to Old MacDonald but fun nevertheless πŸ™‚

    Looking at that team selection the right hand side is going to be either amazing or a joke – both Diaby and Eboue often think they have a free role and could leave huge gaps behind them 😎

  10. rico says:

    Hi peaches, I take you mean the Sky team πŸ˜‰

    Ronald McDonald – it was the rage when I was a kid πŸ˜‰ You must be far too young… πŸ˜‰

    But it was only meant to be fun 😦

  11. rico says:

    It was about Ronald Koeman ….. I am sad now peaches and won’t write anymore 😦 πŸ˜‰

  12. kelsey says:

    evening……manonne stays in goal

  13. kelsey says:

    #

    Mannone,sagna,gallas,vermaelen,clichy,diaby,song,fabregas,arshavin,rvp,eboue

  14. peachesgooner says:

    😳 I said it was fun rico 😳

  15. coadsi says:

    Bench: Almunia, Silvestre, Gibbs, Ramsey, Wilshere, Merida, Vela

    Evening all

  16. peachesgooner says:

    Evening kelsey

  17. peachesgooner says:

    If you don’t speak to me we won’t be able to share the excitement of Merida and Vela coming on 😦

  18. rico says:

    peaches πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰ Sky were right then 😦

    Hi kelsey n coadsi

  19. coadsi says:

    Hi Rico, so what score do you guys predict for tonight?

  20. rico says:

    peaches – you daft old tinker, I was pulling your leg…. The link was weaker than Anne Robinson πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰

    But hopefully it caused a ha ha here, and a ha ha there πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰

  21. coadsi says:

    None of our business so i post this without comment.
    ……

    Rafa Benitez has made several changes to the side which lost to Sunderland on Saturday.

    Full back Glen Johnson appears to have picked up an injury, meaning a full debut for academy graduate Martin Kelly, usually a centre back, at right back. Unless Benitez chooses to play Carragher right back and Kelly in the middle, which is highly unlikely.

    Also out of the side go Martin Skrtel, Fabio Aurelio, Jay Spearing and Ryan Babel.

  22. coadsi says:

    Does anyone know the line up for the reserves?

  23. rico says:

    coadsi – you post what you like here, that is what its all about πŸ™‚ With that line up they could lose tonight, I hope so anyway πŸ™‚

    Haven’t seen the subs yet, but I would guess at Almunia, Merida, Wilshere, Gibbs and a few others πŸ˜‰

  24. rico says:

    Im off for dinner and the match, catch you later

  25. avenell says:

    Evening all.. thanks for the post rico.. only you πŸ˜‰

    I’ve had a bad day, now the opposition are in our kit. 😦

  26. rico says:

    Do I look like Alison Moyet Ave πŸ˜‰ ;)Evening πŸ˜›

    Funny though, I was watching us on the attack for the off, then I realised that I had forgot we were in blue – can you believe that πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰

  27. avenell says:

    I look a bit like Vince, we could be perfect for each other.. πŸ˜‰
    evening rico..

  28. avenell says:

    Vermaelen is playing well..

  29. Freire says:

    Cant watch the game… damn brazilian television!!!!! Hate them all :S

    How’s the game, guys?

  30. avenell says:

    Even there left back looks like Gael.. 😯

  31. rico says:

    You asking me out young man πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰ πŸ™‚ 😳

  32. avenell says:

    Hi Freire.. they look okay. they just missed over the bar.. we need to step up a bit.

  33. Freire says:

    hello ave and rico …
    some friends of mine said we are in danger, are they right?

  34. avenell says:

    Have a watch.. ttp://www.atdhe.net/9980/watch-az-alkmaar-vs-arsenal

  35. rico says:

    Hi Freire – not much is happening really, pretty even

    Robin missed a sitter…

  36. Freire says:

    Thank you, Avenell. Great steam.

  37. avenell says:

    Rubin are beating Barca.. lol..

  38. rico says:

    I think we will tire them out

  39. rico says:

    Good ave πŸ˜›

  40. avenell says:

    That song they do.. I thought it was a dart match.. πŸ˜‰

  41. rico says:

    Gallas asked for that throw!!

    WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

  42. avenell says:

    Fabbie.. πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

  43. Freire says:

    Greeeeaaaat Van Persie!! He’s the best.

  44. rico says:

    Where is your clock ave ??? I said CLOCK ave πŸ˜‰

  45. avenell says:

    I’m on the laptop and I haven’t signed in yet..

  46. rico says:

    Which song ave, there is only one Song πŸ˜‰

  47. avenell says:

    Der der, der der der der.. πŸ˜‰

  48. rico says:

    Song and Cesc – they are pretty good really πŸ™‚

  49. rico says:

    Der Der Der ???????? No idea 😦

  50. avenell says:

    No.. that’s the Denilson song..

  51. Freire says:

    This AZ shirt gets me confused…

  52. rico says:

    ave – you have totally lost me…..

    Boring game!

  53. rico says:

    And what was cescs celebration about????

  54. Freire says:

    LOL … Cescs celebration was hilarious… i didn’t understand that as well.

  55. avenell says:

    Can you see my clock now? πŸ˜‰

  56. avenell says:

    Liverpool are winning.. 😦

  57. rico says:

    Hoorah – The big Clock is back πŸ™‚

    Poo about the dippers 😦

  58. Freire says:

    I’ve bought a new Arsenal shirt =) the last one i bought was 3 years ago :\ so so happy πŸ˜€

  59. avenell says:

    Ger”hard” has gone off though.. I hope it isn’t serious.. πŸ˜‰

  60. rico says:

    which one Freire?

  61. Rasputin says:

    Pretty good performance. If RVP would look up and coolly pick his spot, he’d have got 2 by now. Huggy Bear is as awful as usual – a selection of hosital passes, a clear headre from a corne that he somehow missed and comletely useless when we’re not in possession of the ball. Gael has got away with being too clever a cuple of times…. someone needs to have a word at half tme. We should go on to win comfortably as they tire. Alkmar do play nice football in the middle of the park – I reckon they model themselves on us…

  62. avenell says:

    What shirt did you buy Friere?

  63. rico says:

    Rasp πŸ˜› πŸ˜› Huggy Bear πŸ˜‰

  64. Rasputin says:

    Some net poltergeist keeps stealing letters out of the middle of my wrds πŸ˜‰

  65. Rasputin says:

    Hi rico – can you see the likeness πŸ˜›

  66. avenell says:

    One is a grass… the other is useless on grass.. πŸ˜‰

  67. rico says:

    I am off peeps, catch you all tomorrow, hopefully with 9 points to our name – have a good evening all

    stay safe

  68. Rasputin says:

    ave πŸ˜†

  69. rico says:

    Rasp – for sure, we talked about it a while ago, Mr Stoopid v’s Huggy Bear…… πŸ™‚

  70. rico says:

    Thats funny ave, Huggy was good at what he did though, unlike……

    Def off now..

  71. avenell says:

    Very Italian Friere.. πŸ™‚

  72. avenell says:

    Evening Rasp btw.. 😳

  73. avenell says:

    That was a dive..

  74. Freire says:

    ITALIAN??? WHY AVE?

  75. rico says:

    Jay Simpson has scored again…

    Against Reading 😦

  76. avenell says:

    The stripes .. nice though..

  77. avenell says:

    Jay 1.. auto trader utd 0.. haha.. πŸ˜‰

  78. avenell says:

    No not again .. huggy.. 😦

  79. Freire says:

    It was cheap, then it gets more beautiful than it really is. LOL.

    Diaby almost … own goal ¬¬

  80. rico says:

    He doesn’t own Auto Trader any more ave….

  81. avenell says:

    Ebay has killed auto trader.. like AT killed the good old exchange and mart..

  82. rico says:

    Huggy Huggy Huggy….. How unlucky would that have been..

  83. avenell says:

    Vela .. lone striker???

  84. rico says:

    Just like Video killed the Radio Star… πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰

    Carlos, Carlos.. where is peaches πŸ™‚

  85. avenell says:

    I don’t remember that far back.. πŸ˜‰

  86. rico says:

    1-1 the Dippers πŸ™‚

  87. rico says:

    πŸ˜‰ ave..

    Have to go now, be safe all

  88. avenell says:

    Thanks rico.. you have cheered me up tonight.. thanks again and sleep well.. πŸ™‚

  89. avenell says:

    Not had dinner yet πŸ™‚

  90. avenell says:

    lyon 2-1 up πŸ˜‰

  91. avenell says:

    At least rafa will keep the media off us..

  92. Rasputin says:

    It’s not a disaster – we should have had a pen for the foul on Vela. Koeman will have learned his lesson and start with all his big players at the Emirates – Gallas looked lke a midget up against Pelle. Huggy wants a slappy for several more passes resulting in his teammates sustaining heavy tackles…..

  93. London says:

    It was Dobby who was supposed to be marking Pelle

  94. London says:

    Well for the goal anyway.

  95. London says:

    Just seen the dipper score. Have they sacked him yet?

  96. avenell says:

    soon.. when the yanks have saved up..

  97. avenell says:

    and Barca lost at home..

  98. coadsi says:

    i did not watch the match.can someone please do a player ratings?

    P.s. the cesspool result pleased me tonight

  99. charybdis1966 says:

    Oh dear, that was a painful denouement to the evenings football.
    Another long ball over the top we don’t deal with.
    If it wasn’t for the fact the dippers got beat at home the tabloid press would be predicting the imminent demise of our club.
    So the next two games I go to will take on more importance than I wanted them to thanks to that late equaliser and the winner for the bubbles.

  100. avenell says:

    Coadsi everyone was about a 7.. give Vermaelen and Arshavin a 8 and Diaby a 6..

  101. Irishgunner says:

    Bit annoyed that it was the same old, same old when we let in the goal but the fact we have 7 points from 3 games and Liverpool got beat yet again really overshadows any upset…

    Liverpool πŸ˜†

    Jeez Diaby is a worry but Lucas…. Lucas πŸ˜† apparently he was quite the good player in Brazil… poor old Rafa πŸ˜€

  102. Irishgunner says:

    Oh on Cesc’s celebration, I’m sure it was for his Grandfather, he was aiming to pat his heart but seemed to be patting his ribcage…

  103. kelsey says:

    Morning all,

    not much to say except we were very average tonight(I hate those navy kits,it’s just not us)against a very average team.

    Will we ever learn to keep concentration until the final whistle blows.

    First time this season we had less possesion than the opposition and we were firing blanks.

    I think the team as a whole thought this was a stroll in the park,yet at 1-0 anything can happen.

    With bedntner,Rosicky and eduardo missing our attacking options were limited.

    Anyway,only one home game next and we will qualify.

  104. rico says:

    Morning all – Great goal by Pelle 😦

    Spot-on kelsey, when will we ever learn to stay focused until the last moment? Soon I hope..

    It is not all doom and gloom though, not our result, the world of football this morning is enough to make us all smile πŸ™‚

    Barca lose at home, The Dippers the same and against sides they should have beaten. I know its only three games in but we are almost qualified, the Dippers though are almost out, please let them lose again and again, I don’t know if you are all aware, I really don’t like them πŸ˜‰ Confidence will be low in their camp and don’t we play them soon πŸ˜›

    Definate penalty on Vela – robbed again 😦

  105. rico says:

    The morning gets better, just read that Stevie Me me me is crocked now and will miss a few games, at least he won’t be at The Emirates next Wednesday night…

    I hope Manure thrash them at the weekend πŸ™‚

  106. rico says:

    Boro have sacked Southgate, thats a bolt out of the blue…

  107. Rasputin says:

    Morning Roadsters and Roosters πŸ˜‰

    Further reflections on last night………

    I can’t agree with you kelsey I’m afraid, I thought they were better than average … they looked and played so much like us that I kept supporting the team in red and white. Their midfield passing game was very good and unlike us, they didn’t have a weak link.

    My main problem with huggy bear is that he is ‘hard of thinking’ and at one point he simply passed the ball straight to one of their players on purpose becaus ehe forgot we weren’t playing in the red and white. He eanrd Galles a cut lip with one of his many short, misdirected passes and simply could not think what to do when ‘defending’ (?) a corner so just let it hit him on the shulder and luckily it looped over the bar.

    Clichy got away with being too flash on a couple of occassions but got away with it this time.

    Positives – Manone had a pretty solid performance and by my estimtion is as good as Almunia at his best = we have 4 pretty good keepers, 3 of whom will get better, so maybe we should think about letting Almunia go in the summer.

  108. Rasputin says:

    kelsey – actually, they were much better than Dame Edna – she’s got no left foot … πŸ˜‰

    I’m going to have to go back to typuing school 😦

  109. rico says:

    Rumours are about that Stan The Man is going to increase his shares again this week….

    Does this mean a takeover is just around the corner..

  110. rico says:

    Morning Rasp

    I don’t think any opposition are a bad opposition in the CL – like you, I started watching the red and white shirts and couldn’t work out why a Huggy look-a-like was wearing number 10 (i think it was)Then the penny dropped…

    Once upon a time we would be thrilled with a point away in the CL, just goes to show how much more faith we now have in the team and have got that ‘expection’ back – that has to be a good thing.

  111. Rasputin says:

    Hi rico,

    Yes I agree. The result wasn’t a disaster and we should be guaranteed qualification if we win our next game. The last time we qualified with a game to go, AW played a weakened team away to Porto and we were well beaten and so came second in the group. I’d like us to secure top spot so that we play at home in the second leg and against slightly weaker opposition in the following round.

  112. rico says:

    Anyone think that we switch off only when teams haven’t really created many chances? Look at the game against Fulham, Mannone was always busy and the defence were constantly on their toes – we didn’t concede..

    In games where the team dont really threaten our goal we tend to leak a goal, the Manure game was a good example..

  113. rico says:

    That could be Barca the way they are playing πŸ˜‰
    Or even the Dippers if they manage to qualify πŸ˜‰

    The next two CL games are at home against AZ and SL, top spot could be ours by then πŸ˜› Then we can send Senderos and Silvestre to play Olympiacos and hope they get lost πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰

  114. rico says:

    I actually prefer us to play the second leg away, only because of ‘that Bridge Goal’…. 😦

  115. rico says:

    Got ot go sort the chickens out !! Catch you all in a while

  116. peachesgooner says:

    Morning all

    I also think that Alkmaar surprised us with their neat crisp passing game – they started to make mistakes late in the first half and that let us in to score a very beautifully crafted goal – we were three against two though so it would have been pretty poor not to have scored.

    Robin had lots of shots but they were all straight at the keeper – I know he hits them hard but maybe he should try placing the ball instead of always firing it at the keeper (sorry rasp if you’ve said that already).

    I believe our biggest problem was having both Eboue and Huggy on the pitch at the same time in creative positions. Neither of them have good footballing brains – they both tend to stand still when not in possession – I’ve never seen either of them pull a defender away by making a run into space. A team can carry one but not both.

    But we are still in control of our group and I don’t have any worries about us qualifying…..

    …..unlike Liverpool πŸ™‚

  117. rico says:

    Morning peaches..

    He nearly hit the ball out of the stadium too, now that would have been something πŸ˜‰

  118. peachesgooner says:

    Hi rico – another lovely day here in north london, how about you?

    Its a shame for Robin because a couple of his chances would have been great goals and then everyone would have been delighted that we won a game in 2nd gear.

    I thought AA was amazing when he moved into the middle πŸ™‚

  119. rico says:

    The rain has stopped, bit gloomy but a lot warmer thankfully πŸ™‚

    I am still smiling over the dippers result…

    AA had a funny old game again though, but once he moved he was so much better, maybe Arsene will see that too, after watching it again of course πŸ˜‰

  120. London says:

    I have a bit of a report if it is of any use?

  121. rico says:

    I dont understand Huggy, he is a big chap, but just doesn’t seem to have any real purpose about him, there is being layed back, but Huggy goes beyond that.

  122. rico says:

    Go for it London

  123. peachesgooner says:

    Will Arsene want to see why we didn’t score more goals or why we managed to concede in the 93rd minute?

    Even if the score had been 2-0 going into extra time I’d like to think that Arsene would want to address the defending problem but as I’m an advocator of ‘we’re gonna score loads more than you’ and so is Arsene, its difficult to know how he feels about conceding late on.

    He says the team were naive and that they are a young team and will learn not to give free kicks away. WHEN πŸ˜‰

  124. London says:

    New Post (of a sort)

  125. peachesgooner says:

    rico – I think the problem with Huggy is that hes a talented footballer with no footballing brain.

    There are loads of footballers with small brains but the good ones have a way of being able to read the game and play their part in it. Rooney is one that springs to mind.

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