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

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!!


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

  1. rico says:

    Morning Roadsters

    This made me chuckle 😉

    SAMIR NASRI was so hungry to make his Arsenal comeback on Wednesday that he insisted: I wanted to eat the pitch.
    The Frenchman, 22, started for the Gunners in their 2-1 Carling Cup win over Liverpool at Emirates Stadium after three months out with a broken leg.

    Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger will check on Nasri’s fitness today before deciding whether he will be involved in tomorrow lunchtime’s North London derby against Tottenham.

    Nasri said: “The boss asked me how I felt two or three times during the game against Liverpool. I had to make a sign if I felt the slightest muscular problem – but everything was all right.

    “I was very satisfied with my sensations. After five months without playing, I had appetite. I wanted to eat the pitch, to touch the ball.

    “I thought that it would have been a little bit more difficult. We worked well with the physical assistant. Now, I need to play and play again.

    “We will check how I feel before the Tottenham game but I am going to be patient.

    “There will be lots of games and there is a Champions League tie against AZ Alkmaar on Wednesday. The most important thing for me is not to suffer a relapse.”

  2. rico says:


    YOU rarely achieve much with a suspect goalkeeper.
    Over the last two decades, the only example of a team carrying a keeper to the title was probably Manchester United and Mark Bosnich in 1999-2000.

    Then, again, United were such a class apart at the time they ended EIGHTEEN points ahead of runners-up Arsenal.

    The current Gunners outfit, who take on Spurs at The Emirates tomorrow, aren’t in the same league.

    They have four goalkeepers on the books – Vito Mannone, Manuel Almunia, Lukasz Fabianski and teen Wojciech Szczesny – and none, for one reason or other, look up to the job.

    It’s a strange situation for a club that down the years had huge characters like Jack Kelsey, Bob Wilson, Pat Jennings, David Seaman and Jens Lehmann between the posts.

    Even Jimmy Rimmer and John Lukic were a rung above anything they have now.

    Keepers remain Arsene Wenger’s blind spot – remember Richard Wright and Rami Shaaban? A situation even more worrying for Arsenal fans than his failure to replace Sol Campbell.

    Look at their rivals and there’s no comparison – Petr Cech (Chelsea), Edwin van der Sar (Man Utd), Pepe Reina (Liverpool) and Shay Given (Man City).

    In fact, you would be hard pushed to find a Premier League club WITHOUT a better keeper than the four at Arsenal.

    Arsenal’s problems started with the demise of Lehmann in the European Championship year of 2007-08.

    For three seasons, the experienced German proved a solid if eccentric replacement for the legendary Seaman.

    But Lehmann’s form deserted him in the autumn of 2007, Almunia came in and, despite the problems directly in front of him, did well enough to even suggest he might be the answer to England’s own goalkeeping concerns.

    Now, though, his game is in crisis after missing the last 10 games since letting in four at Manchester City.

    But the real damage was done in the previous match at Old Trafford where he needlessly brought down Wayne Rooney for a penalty, then failed to take control of his area as Abou Diaby headed a spectacular own goal – and a match Arsenal should have won was lost.

    There has been talk of a chest infection, though others claim his confidence has gone.

    And then we have Mannone. The Italian made his name with one outstanding game at Fulham but, even then, his tendency to push the ball into danger areas was apparent.

    He had some shaky moments against Blackburn and Birmingham but it was his blunder for the first West Ham goal on Sunday that really set alarm bells ringing.

    Rather than pushing Alessandro Diamanti’s free-kick round the post, he battered it back into play for Carlton Cole to start the Hammers’ shock comeback.

    As has happened with Arsenal before this season, mass panic broke out.

    At a time when William Gallas and Thomas Vermaelen are attempting to create a viable partnership at centre-half, the last thing they need is a goalkeeper they don’t trust.

    Arsenal desperately require a goalkeeper not only of ability but one who, like Lehmann, talks to his defenders (even if they don’t like what he is saying).

    Until they do, they will continue to throw away the points that, in a very mediocre season at the top of the Premier League, could win them the title.

    Almunia may get one last chance tomorrow….

  3. London says:

    I make that two posts before 8 o’clock; Morning Rico, I enjoyed reading them both; by the way, if you want to watch Jay Simpson, he is playing tonight for QPR v Leicester 7:45 Sky Sports.

  4. rico says:

    Morning London – 2 posts??

  5. rico says:

    Ah, the keeper bit, that was an aticle in the papers this morning, I can’t take any credit for that one 😉

  6. London says:

    Well, your posts are of such a standard now that I thought you had written that as well….all good stuff.

  7. rico says:

    Thanks London, and thanks for the Simpson game news, I will try and watch/record that game. I quite like him and really want him to stay with us so it will interesting to see him..

  8. rico says:

    Got to pop out for a few hours, catch you all a bit later

  9. Rasputin says:

    Hi Roadsters,

    Good post rico …….

    Re: goalkeepers,

    I have a feeling that Arsene will be sticking with Mannone tomorrow after his ‘I know who my best keeper is’ statement …

  10. rico says:

    Hi Rasp

    I thought by that he may have meant Fabianski 😉

  11. avenell says:

    Afternoon roadsters..

    That’s really good rico.. saves reading newsnow.. 😉

    I reckon Almunia will be back for tomorrow.. he has been a naughty boy and has been punished enough now..

  12. Rasputin says:

    Hi again Roadsters,

    My love / hate / exasperation affair with Arsene will reach fever pitch tomorrow if we play Diaby and EE – why am I even saying this … we all know he will….aaaarrrrggghhhhhh

    Watch out for the curse of the ex-player, not the cheshunt chav, but Palacios who we trialled, trained, recommended to Steve Bruce and is now a real handful in the centre of their midfield – he will be able to nick the ball off Huggy at will.

    We need to be composed and keep possession tomorrow, keep it simple in defence and relentlessly probe their defence. No free kicks to be given away on the edge of the box, no rash unnecessary tackles in our box, no flapping from the keeper – just weave the ball between the players who count – Cesc, AA and RVP.

    Diaby is the booby trap that could blow up in our faces …..

  13. peachesgooner says:

    Hi all

    I have a serious pre-derby headache 😦 😦 😦

    A couple of years ago I dragged myself to the spud game with a kidney infection – now that wasn’t clever. It was the Saturday before xmas – Nikki came on and scored with his first touch, yes that was 2 years ago. By the time I got home I was in soooooooooo much pain I nearly had to go to hospital. Someone kept texting me and moaning about how we’d nearly lost and a draw wasn’t good enough – yes you know who you are 😛

  14. peachesgooner says:

    Hi rasp 😛

  15. peachesgooner says:

    Do you think AA will know this is a big enough game for him to play for 90 minutes?

  16. peachesgooner says:

    Oh look, 3 Philippes in a row 😀

  17. avenell says:

    And his booties..

  18. peachesgooner says:

    The Times has gone back to being in love with Arsenal. Theres a double page spread again today talking about how fabulous Merida is and how other clubs want to follow our youth policy.

    Not included in the double page spread is an article referring to shhhh you know who’s new spouting of rubbish, heres the link for anyone who hasn’t read it


  19. peachesgooner says:

    Hi ave – how are you?

    I thought the pink booted one had changed his gravatar 😉

  20. peachesgooner says:

    I meant to say after the other night that the arsenalisation of the Emirates is beginning to look really good inside now. The concourses started off being really grey and barren looking – now there are sections with huge banners and additional pictures on the walls and overhead beams. It feels more like the home of a football club now.

    I’ll try and take some photos…….

  21. peachesgooner says:

    I’ve just read what Arsene said re keeper selection and I reckon its Almunia……..

  22. coadsi says:

    so any predictions for tomorrow?
    Evening all

  23. rico says:

    Hi all…..

    peaches, i think he means Almunia too

  24. rico says:

    Hi coadsi, hopefully there will be a heart felt rip raoring post to get us up for the game tomorrow 😉 😉

    ok, maybe not, i am going for a home win – 1-0 would be enough, but I hope for a bigger win 😛

  25. coadsi says:

    rico i think a 3-1 to us. you would be ashamed of me if i told u who i expect to score on us (hint hint one of our own 😦 )
    but yes a 1-0 will be just as good

  26. rico says:

    I think I know who you mean coadsi, David Beckham… well same initials 😉 😉

  27. coadsi says:

    so whats your team for tomorrow rico?
    any news on Vela. that crap on arse.com about knee injury is vague. everyone else has an expected date of return except him. not even his press conference when asked about injury update he is mentioned.

  28. Rasputin says:

    I think Mannone would have saved that pool dipper shot – he’s taller and has very strong hands … isn’t it a bit risky to put beach bum straight in for such an important game?

    I think Mannone will be our future No.1 ahead of Fabianski unless we buy a proper world class keeper – which is really the answer.

  29. rico says:

    Yo Rasp 😛

    coadsi, thats a good question 😉


    Eboue/Bac Gallas TV Gibbs/Clichy

    Tomas Cesc Song

    Robin Arshavin Merida/Nasri

  30. rico says:

    Its risky putting beach bum in for any game Rasp 😉

    On a serious note, I think Almunia was rested for personal reasons, If Mannone plays he needs to play like he did against Fulham, he set a high standard and tomorrow he will need to be at that level.

  31. Rasputin says:

    ‘spect rico ….. 😉

    3:2 is my prediction

    We go 1 nil down, make it 1 all before half time, score two great goals in the 2nd half, they get one back with 10 mins to go and it’s all panic to the end but we hang on ……

  32. Rasputin says:

    There’ll probably be a red card as well – hopefully not EE this time, but one of theirs …….

  33. peachesgooner says:

    rasp – you really want us to be on the edge of our seats then……

    Mind you I’m sitting in the seats that Irish sat in for the B’ham game and that was a bit squeaky wasn’t it 🙂

  34. coadsi says:

    Rasp after wednesday i cant take another emotional ride, too much for one week. i also would not mind in Don Vito carry on but i suspect he will play Aluminium.
    is Rosicky available rico? not expecting Nasri to start tomorrow. diaby and eboue will be in there methinks

  35. Freire says:

    Hello all!
    We’re going to watch the derby tomorrow on a pub here in Brazil, with a lot of Arsenal supporters. It will be a crazy day. The owner of the pub is an irish sp*r … LOL. REALLY REALLY hope we win tomorrow! It doesn’t matter if the referree goes wrong, or the ball doesn’t pass the line .. we MUST win every game against Sp*rs.

    I’d go with a 2-1 – RVP twice.

  36. peachesgooner says:

    I hope if it is indeed 3-2 with 2 minutes to go that the first team watched how the team the other night held on to the ball for the last 7 or 8 minutes.

    It certainly kept the crowd going – much better than trying to score another goal and giving away possession.

  37. peachesgooner says:

    Hi Friere – what time of day is the game on in Brazil?

  38. Rasputin says:

    Hi coadsi / Freire / peaches 😛

    One thing is for sure – there will be tension, controversy and nerves tomorrow. I can’t go to watch us play the puds after last year’s 4 all.

    Arry’s an old sod for playing Bentley – just as Mark Hughes knew that Ade would be fired up, Arry knows that “DB-the-shit-one” will give his all. As I said earlier, I think Palacios could be the one who makes it difficult for us by closing down our midfiled.

  39. rico says:

    😦 😦 😦 Mumbai and back, and back and back!!!

    I fear a peaches 2 hour call coming on to BT…

    I have lost all my comments. 😦 😦 😦

  40. rico says:

    How rude of me, hi peaches and Freire…

  41. Rasputin says:

    Sounds like you need a Blackberry rico! 😦

  42. Rasputin says:

    I have a new gravatar in the pipeline ….. here’s a clue, he’s gonna score 2 goals tomorrow…. 😉

  43. peachesgooner says:

    Poor you rico – give them what for, its a ridiculous service if they can’t keep you up and running, it makes me so cross……although saying that mines been OK since last week 😳

  44. peachesgooner says:

    Does it begin with a N……rasp?

    Agree about Palacios – why didn’t we buy him? Hes one that got away if you ask me……

  45. Rasputin says:

    Certainly not peaches – I assume your next guess will be spot on …..

  46. avenell says:

    Hi all.. message from rico.. she has no internet.. 😦

  47. avenell says:

    Oh and I am fine thanks Peaches.. 🙂

  48. peachesgooner says:

    The mascot…..?

  49. peachesgooner says:

    Hi ave – took your time to answer ….. will you be able to get up in time to watch the game tmoro 😉

  50. Rasputin says:

    Close 🙄

  51. peachesgooner says:

    I don’t want to spoil the surprise for everyone else so I’ll keep schtum ……

    David Bentley for the red-card then…

  52. Rasputin says:

    Is Ledley playing tomorrow? Of all the spuds players, he has my respect the most……

  53. JonJon says:

    whos out for the pomme de terres tommorrow???

    defoe suspended…king injured?? woodgate injured..modric injured..keane and hundredstone are shit….

    should be a walkover… 4-1…

  54. coadsi says:

    i think king and woodgate will be there. but defoe, modric and lennon are all out

  55. coadsi says:

    JonJon i reckon Vassiriki will miss his goal scoring opportunity so its 3-1

  56. peachesgooner says:

    Hi JonJon – hows the bump coming along 🙂

    I think they’ve had Ledley wrapped in cotton wool for 2 weeks now so I expect he’ll play and Woodgate was being decided today.

  57. JonJon says:

    lennon too??

    so they will have a half decent defence but sod all in attack…saying that they will probably score against us we conceed against everyone these days but its all about the strikers tomorrow i feel..

    rosicky needs to play…if not then nasri cos if eboue plays in attack again i’ll go mad..

  58. JonJon says:

    hi coadsi… he will score thats where spuds get their 1….

    hi peaches the bump is huge…shes bigger now at 4 months than what the majority of my mates other halves were at 9…im serious shes massive…and weve had the scan theres only one…

  59. Rasputin says:

    Hi JonJon,

    EE and Diaby are sure to play – so that means a high percentage fof our attacking moves will beak down when they’re involved 😦

    I think arrry is cute enough to know that Diaby is the weak link and his midfield will close him down in possession – it worked a treat twice for manure last season … SAF targetted Diaby as our weakness….

  60. peachesgooner says:

    I nicked this off a spud site

    Arsenal (from): Mannone, Clichy, Gallas, Vermaelen, Sagna, Eboue, Song, Fabregas, Diaby, Arshavin, van Persie, Almunia, Eduardo, Vela, Gibbs, Silvestre, Wilshere, Ramsey, Bendtner.

    Tottenham (from): Gomes, Cudicini, Button, Hutton, Naughton, Corluka, Assou-Ekotto, Bale, Woodgate, King, Bassong, Dawson, Huddlestone, Jenas, Palacios, Kranjcar, Bentley, Keane, Crouch, Pavlyuchenko.

  61. coadsi says:

    guys is Rosicky available for tomorrow?

  62. peachesgooner says:

    Am I being naive, I don’t think Eboue will play in attack – theres no need for him…..Nikki can play on the right if Nasri doesn’t start……..

    Ignore that squad theres no Nasri or Philippe 🙂

  63. JonJon says:

    its not hard to find out our weaknesses is it rasp..i mean..wenger plays them every week so its not like its a secret anymore…

    coadsi i hope rosicky plays hes integral to our midfield and wengerball…he was 50 50 for the game last week so i dont see any reason why he wont be fit now…unless its one of those arsenal 50-50’s where your out for one match but miss the next 18months…

  64. peachesgooner says:

    coadsi – if he is……Arsene is going to surprise us 😛

  65. peachesgooner says:

    I agree JonJon – Rosicky is a big miss 😦

  66. JonJon says:

    peaches i dont want nikki on the right either…he was poor against liverpool apart from the goal and his first touch is still that of a brick wall..hes more dangerous in the box not on the wing… id go with eddie, rvp and AA up top with cesc song and rosicky in the middle..defence picks itself and we might as well not pick a keeper…we wont need one tomorrow cos defoes their only decent striker…

  67. peachesgooner says:

    I like your team JonJon but you didn’t leave a space for Diaby – Arsene will be very unhappy 😦

    I love a huge bump, why wait till 7 months for it to show – tell Mrs JonJon to enjoy it 🙂 🙂 🙂

  68. coadsi says:

    thanx for the response guys. JonJon i doubt eddie will start tomorrow because he played the entire match mid week while pink boots came off. for that reason i think nikki pink boots will start

  69. JonJon says:

    she hates it peaches..shes really poorly with it every day all day…

    she loves the bump and shes desparate for a baby but she hates every other aspect of being pregnant…at first i thought she was over reacting but she really is poorly,,,ive been doing my bit with massages and bubble baths and stuff but she hates me for getting her this way.. lol

  70. JonJon says:

    if eddie doesnt play then i dont mind the soho pink kid up top..but in the centre…let rvp and AA work the wings..

    why play a 6’4 striker on the wing then shout at your fullbacks when their crosses dont find anyone..

    we have a team full of pygmys and the one man who can play the air ball is out on the touchline…doesnt make sence…obviously wengers trying to develop another aspect of his game by playing him wide but once again in most cases its detrimental to the team…

  71. Rasputin says:

    I watched the game on TV and thought Nik had a poor game against pool (except for the goal which was excellent) but everyone who I have spoken to who was at the game said he was very good and worked his socks off.

    I agree JonJon that RVP would be better out wide and if its not hapening try AA in the middle – obviously not for his height, but because he poses an even greater threat particlarly when he links up with Cesc/Tomas/Nasri

  72. Freire says:

    the game is at 10.45am over here.

    Are you out of “summer-time” in England, people? I don’t understand these changes in the clocks … you are in Autumn, aren’t you?

  73. JonJon says:

    rasp..i agree pinky worked hard..he gets in alot of positions but he kept messing up…poor control and poor pass selection..missed sitter after sitter..then scored that cracker…

    its just the same when we play eboue out there..lots of pace lots of dangerous runs but does naff all with it…wastes alot of good positions…..

    if we need a right sided player we have plenty i reserves who have trained in that position..dont see why we need to play a FB or a striker there to be honest…

  74. peachesgooner says:

    Oh dear JonJon – I’m sorry to hear shes not enjoying it and is still poorly…….I’m sure you’re giving her lashings of tlc….its worth it in the end 😛

    Arsene doesn’t want to play Nikki in the middle and RVP out wide 😦 Eduardo was awesome the other night coming out of challenges from 2 men with the ball still at his feet 🙂

  75. JonJon says:

    hi friere it should be autumn but it feels like winter over here 12 months of the year….

    enjoy the game mate tomorrow…and dont get too involved with the spuds in that bar of yours…

    i dont know how it works over there but in my experience a north london derby and lots of beer and both sets of fans in the same place as the beer and you tend to miss the match cos your too busy pulling the pool cue out of some spuds backside… 😉

  76. JonJon says:

    dudu has that in his locker peaches…he was out for so long that ppl forget what he can do..his games more than goals…

    he’ll get to play more when wenger thinks his confidence is back and he his rid of all the niggles you seem to get after a long period out…him and rosicky will be key to our season after xmas..if they can stay fit that is..

  77. peachesgooner says:

    Arshavin and Eduardo switching sides should confuse those spuds …… 😀

  78. JonJon says:

    thats what im hoping for peaches..with either robin or nikki in the creative sandwich…but id opt for robin due to the goalscoring form hes in…

  79. peachesgooner says:

    There was a moment in the game on Wednesday when Eduardo was chasing a ball and a scouser was coming in hard on him and being the mummy I shouted out ‘careful’ much to the delight of the young man that came with me 😛 😛 😛

    I bet I wasn’t alone …….

  80. Rasputin says:

    I think AA has the greatest potential to pull something magical out of the bag – its the sort of game he will excell in … as long as they pass him the ball, sometimes we’re terribly one-sided in our play.

  81. JonJon says:

    lol peaches..i like that…thats funny…the macho manly thing to say would be man on…but carefuls nice too… 😉

  82. London says:

    The only change from the line up that started against West Ham, apart from the possible inclusion of Almunia, is Bendtner but I am not holding my breath. When you look at the goal that Liverpool scored in the week and the reaction on Wenger’s face when Bendtner failed to track back you have every explanation you will ever need as to why he picks Eboue week in and week out. Eduardo and Nasri have no chance of starting, that is why they were played for 90 minutes, although both could come off the bench.

  83. JonJon says:

    i know rasp…

    on the left we have the brilliant AA..yet we seem to have this thing about playing the ball down the right with the not so brilliant eboue…takes the piss…

    if rosicky is out tomorrow we should move AA into midfield with cesc and song…

  84. JonJon says:

    yeah london agree…the goal was nikkis fault…but eboues shit going forward..i dont get why you would want to play a player in an attacking role just to give him the job of tracking back????

    wenger confuses me sometimes…

    but it wont matter who plays where tomorrow..spuds are shit..we could play the ladies and still beat them..

  85. London says:

    Hi Jonjon

    I didn’t say that I agree, I was just pointing out the reaction on Wenger’s face, which I am sure you noticed.

  86. London says:

    I’m being called, à demain

  87. JonJon says:

    i noticed..lol

    i was just agreeing to your observation.. 😉

  88. peachesgooner says:

    Just heard from a spud that Woodgate isn’t playing – Bassong will play alongside King.

    They’re expecting DB to score them another wonder goal – they are so deluded 😛

    Nite London

  89. Rasputin says:

    Not being one who feels that I have to defend AW’s every action, I am comfortable and come out and say that if puts out the anticpated team, he will be making a mistake. They have a reasonable defence but will carry very little attacking threat, we should play the Wengerball exponents and tear them apart.

  90. JonJon says:

    did that mean bye?? seeya london..enjoy the game…

    peaches theres more chance of diaby scoring than bently

    im off myself guys…enjoy the match evryone i’ll try get on tomorrow…


  91. peachesgooner says:

    Definitely play Wengerball rasp, show ’em how its done 🙂

  92. Rasputin says:

    Can’t play wengerball with Diaby and Eboue in the side peaches – the passing doesn’t flow like it should. Eboue goes on runs that lead to nothing and Diaby puts other players into trouble.

  93. peachesgooner says:

    rasp – you need to get that last comment to Arsene to save us all the frustration 😀

  94. Freire says:

    Thanks for the advertising, JonJon.

    We’re not getting into trouble with the spuds.. I have a victory to celebrate 😀

    I won’t talk to you all tomorrow, so good match for everyone and keep on gunning!

  95. rico says:

    Morning Roadsters


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: