To Win It, You Have Got To Want It.

How disappointing was that? Made all the worse by the frenzy of expectation that we whipped ourselves into. I’m more stunned than angry, maybe anger will come later but right now I am walking around in a daze.

I reckon no matter what combination of player you hoped to see yesterday, you were catered for: if you were one of those that wanted Nasri in place of Diaby, you got it; if you wanted to see Ramsey given more game time than Denilson, you got it; if you thought that the combination of Fabregas, Arshavin, Nasri, Rosicky would be unstoppable, you got it, if you thought Vela and Walcott would make the difference, you got it; if you thought Song was too important to rest, you got it and if you thought that Silvestre shouldn’t be anywhere near the first team, you got that as well. Which doesn’t leave a lot to moan about  making things even more confusing.

There were, of course, moments in the first half when the quality of Wengerball was so high that you, like me, must have thought that it is only a matter of time before this clicks and it starts raining goals – but as we know all too well that was not to be.

The biggest disappointments for me were Rosicky and Nasri; Ramsey should also be in this category but he is young enough to be excused. Rosicky flounced about; there were flicks, mostly with his hair, but no tricks. Nasri was so ineffectual that I found myself wishing Diaby were out there, need I say more. Players of their quality should have added something magical but they played with the a level of intensity and commitment that we would expect of them in an exhibition game.

The inclusion of Vela and Walcott gave us width and hope but who was going to finish?

The back line showed their usual commitment, nothing wrong with the attitude. I don’t blame Almunia for the goal. We learnt that Gibbs is a better choice than Traore and that Sagna’s crossing is embarrassing, but then again we already knew that. Why he was trying to send over high crosses to the shortest attack in Europe can only lead us to the conclusion that he is definitely a strawberry short of a punnet.

Cesc showed the urgency that we have come to expect of him but he missed RVP more that anyone. Our captain just hasn’t had enough time to work out how to play with Eduardo, this will happen, I mean, if Modric can find a way to play with him to the tune of seventy goals for their former club and country then I am sure Fabregas will be able to. But do we have enough time? Our title hopes have been severely wounded by Sunderland and I fear that if we lose against Chelsea that it wound be mortal.

Time to pick ourselves up, that combination of talent can’t be kept down for too long can it? I expect them to learn from this cruel lesson and come out with a determination that was sadly lacking yesterday and crucify Standard Liege, putting us in the right frame of mind for next Sunday – I hope.

39 Responses to To Win It, You Have Got To Want It.

  1. London says:

    Good Morning Roadsters

    Just when I thought it couldn’t get worse, I wake up with raging tooth ache.

  2. peachesgooner says:

    Morning London and all

    Sorry about your toothache London maybe it was waiting until you were truly pissed off about something to enrage you further.

    Good post – very matter of fact and calming. It just didn’t work yesterday – can’t blame Arsene for anything except maybe he could have brought on the subs earlier but we know he never will.

    The front three were missing Robins(and Nikkis) work-rate as I suspected they would, for all the talent on show there was hardly any link-up play after about 15 minutes and too many passes went astray.

    Sunderland worked very hard and Cana was pretty much in control. I think Steve Bruce is doing a great job.

    Should we have had a penalty – I couldn’t bare to watch any of it again so I don’t know……….

  3. peachesgooner says:


    New Post
    # Rasputin Says:
    November 22, 2009 at 10:42 am

    Morning Roadsters,

    Here’s my match report 😦

    Too many players tried to be too clever – Rosicky, Cesc and Nasri all guilty.

    We were complacent and didn’t show a great enough sense of urgency from the start.

    Traore did OK at left back

    No blame should be attached to AW for the lacklustre performance – he’s right, we should ban November as a month and international friendlies altogether

    3 points thrown away and an opportunity missed to put a comfortable gap between us and the chasing pack.

    We will be no higher than 3rd by Christmas
    # Rasputin Says:
    November 22, 2009 at 10:44 am

    Forgot to add that Dudu is off form at the moment – bad timing as we really missed RVP

  4. Rasputin says:

    Morning London,

    Spot on with the post! That team should have been able to win comfortably – unfortunately they obviously thought the same and forgot that you have to make it happen …. by whatever means!

    As usual, I have the orphan comments on the last post where I made some of the same points in a more clumsy manner.

  5. peachesgooner says:

    These are Rasputins that were on the last post….

  6. Rasputin says:

    Hi peaches, thanks for ‘cutting and pasting me’ 😉

  7. peachesgooner says:

    Your welcome rasp – seems everyones in hiding 😉

  8. rico says:

    Morning all..

    Good read London and thanks for the help this morning 🙂

    I am stunned by that result yesterday and we have missed a wonderful opportunity to put real pressure on the chavs..

    Couldn’t agree more with the need for a massive win on Tuesday night, not only for the teams morale, but for ours as well!

  9. rico says:

    Im out of hiding and you have all gone in 😦

    Off out for a bit

  10. JonJon says:

    afternoon guys..

    london well put…

    i totally agree with everything you say…its hard to pin the blame on anyone yesterday…
    that is the team the majority of us would have picked..i was happy with the lineup…
    wengers subs were good…
    we were in control for long periods of the game yet we still get beat…i was astounded by the result…
    yes rosicky and nasri dissapointed me too…

    what made it worse was that manure had a good result..

    the only consolation i have is that we have a game in hand and our next match is at home to chelsea…both are must win games and if we do it puts us three clear of manu and 2 within chelsea…

    we are still 3rd and looking comfy as a top four team in a league where the competition is so high now, most people expected us to drop out of the top four…

    it could be worse we could be liverpool… 😉

    i think its too early though to say this is a dent in our hopes..we can still pull it back and if we are still hanging on to chelseas shirt come xmas we’ll over take them when drogba and essien go to ACN

    all is not lost, but we need to go on another 6-7 game winning streak

    this time last season we started a 21 game unbeaten run…we need to do that again…

  11. JonJon says:

    oh and i think sagna should have been rested cos he looked tired…so did gallas but big willy still played well…

    and i dont think the fixtures do us any favours either…chelsea liverpool and manure all play at home after an international break and our boys who have travelled half way across the world had to then nip round the corner to sunderland….

    sunderland was a banana skin and we slipped…

    manure have also lost 3 games and chelsea have lost 2…nobodys unbeatable this season..

  12. JonJon says:

    one thing that makes me curious is that at home we win every game..the only time weve dropped points is when weve played away…

  13. rico says:

    Hi JJ,

    Do you remember the season we didn’t lose a game away from home all season, so much so Arson used to get the team together the night before for a home game, stay in a hotel and then travel together to the stadium (i think i am right in saying that)just to try and get us to win at home more…

    Goodness knows what he can do for the away games, but we don’t seem to travel well… 😦

  14. London says:

    Some good points there JJ

  15. JonJon says:

    i do rico..i remember the season we went unbeaten…

    footballs changed since then..mancity for example have had to spend 250mil to catch us up…chelsea have had to spend over half a billion to overtake us…

    theres so much more competition its hard to do those things again…

    in the good old days it was just us and manure…everyone else was shit…until they all started spending money like it was unlimited…

    we slipped at sunderland..manure have slipped at burnley…chelsea have lost twice away from home…

    as long as we turn the grove into a fortress this season and we sort our away form out we’ll be ok…

    this seasons been really wierd..everyones beating everyone…

  16. JonJon says:

    hiya london…

    i look at it like this..

    the season we threw the PL away we were rubbish at the end of the season…but we had a blinding start

    the reason we beat villa to the CL place is cos we had a blinding finish.. (sort of) and we went unbeaten 21 games after xmas….

    we need to put those two together…and so far weve had the blinding start…even after yesterdays setback there has been nothing to suggest to me we cant have a blinding finish too

  17. London says:

    I like your positiveness JJ

  18. London says:

    It seems like it’s all down to Eduardo clicking. He made no runs yesterday or if he did Fabregas was so unused to them that he missed the opportunity — something very rare for someone of his level of talent. Yes, it seems to me that our title hopes are resting with those two. Although, if it does click heaven help the opposition because Eduardo is more than a number 9 than Van Persie is, so in theory we should get more goals.

  19. JonJon says:

    i feel different to last year london…

    last year was very frustrating, we let players we needed to stay leave and we were an average side last season…we didnt really click and we got smashed in the big games..players played everywhere and lineups were rubbish and we couldnt score and we kept losing silly games…this time last year we were out of the top 4 and out of the PL title chase..

    players were kicing off and being in the press for the wrong things and then playing poorly and the whole thing was a mess..on the pitch and off it..

    its different this season..were playing well, everyones happy, we are in the top three with a game in hand and its almost december…

    this was supposed to be the season that we dropped out but weve shown what we can do…

    everyone was talking about a top 3 at the start of the season cos of the threat of citeh and spuds and villa…

    look where we are…and we aint there by fluke.

  20. JonJon says:

    in theory london yes…

    but rvp was turning into a number 9/10…

    he was doing both roles…dudus really just a number 9 so he needs abit of help in the creative side..

    id of thought that cesc rosicky and nasri playing with him would have lead to lots of goals but like you say it may be just a matter off time before it clicks…

    or maybe playing bendtner up front alongside him when he comes back..nikki aint bad as a number 10..dudu might compliment him…

  21. Rasputin says:

    Eduardo needs another player beside him to play off. He had quite a good understanding with Nik last year, hopefully we’ll get to see the two playing together as soon as Nik is fit.

  22. rico says:

    Also, you have to give credit to Steve Bruce, he has turned Sunderland into a half decent side. I think he is a far better manager than Hughes or Keane from the Manure team of old..

    I recall suggesting that they may be a surprise for this season, they were unlucky to lost at WHL and have had some good results against the top sides, but like us, they also come a cropper sometimes againt the ‘lesser’ sides 😉

    Maybe now the first game without Robin is over, the team will settle. We have a lot of injured players back and things look more positive. Pressure must be on Dudu, especially after missing a few sitters the other week. Let him get ‘his first’ and all will be ok.

    By the sounds of it yesterday everyone just had a bad day at the office, and sadly they all had it on the same day…

    Here’s to Tuesday

  23. JonJon says:


  24. rico says:

    I honestly believe we are going to win the EPL, I really do, but a loss is a loss and its hard to stomach 😦 😦

  25. Rasputin says:

    Hi JonJon, your comment wasn’t there when I posted … honest 🙄

  26. rico says:

    JJ, there was another season when we would lose at home, but win away, thats the one I am referring to, I cant remember the year 😦

    For sure I remember The Invincible Year 🙂 🙂

  27. JonJon says:

    yeh rico..

    bruce is a good manager…sunderland have beaten liverpool and drawn with manure this season too so they werent no pushovers…i still thought that team would beat them though…maybe the international break messed us up…

    maybe if we’d have been at home we would have won, like the others…but its just a slip up..

    sometimes its better going into your next game after a wake up call like that…and our next PL game is chelsea…and out of interest chelsea play citeh at eastlands the week after so the next few weeks are crucial..

    if we beat chelsea and pool…. and chelsea lose at citeh too..we could be top of the table before the xmas fixtures kick in…with the depth of our squad id fancy us as favorites..

  28. rico says:

    Eduardo needs Theo Walcott alongside him 🙂 🙂

  29. Rasputin says:

    I think Nik and RVP have raised their work levels significantly this season, and I reckon a lot of that is to do with the fact that they’re not playing alongside Lazybayor. I haven’t noticed Theo striking up an understanding with any player in poarticular (he hasn’t stayed fit enough and in the side long enough maybe) Rosicky and Hleb were very good together and then Tomas got injured. AA seems to work well with Nasri and Cesc. Nik’s game seemed to compliment Dudu’s

  30. rico says:


    I never seem to see what others see about Nik, don’t know if I have mentioned that before 😉

    Seriously though, I think if Theo had a run without injury and played on the right instead on Nik,in a front three I truly believe he would give us more.. that is becuase I think he will become a more clynical finisher in front of goal.. and he has so much more pace than Nik to get past the defence…

  31. Rasputin says:

    True rico, I think Nik is now better at Wengerball = inticate passing/receiving. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a fan of Theo too…… 😉

  32. JonJon says:

    bollox has anyone seen the spuds score…


  33. rico says:

    It funny rasp, even I think Nik has started better this year, but at the same time, so many other bloggers around the sites don’t think the same….

    Hey – I know you are a fan of Theo 🙂

    I just want us to all see him in the side for a good run in his true position, then we can judge him for real.

    We could do with ave here, he doesnt rate Theo 😦

  34. JonJon says:

    thats made this weekend even worse…bollox bollox bollox..

    im off…

    speak to you all soon i hope..

  35. rico says:

    Bloody heck JJ, who are they playing, Maidenhead…… 😦

  36. rico says:

    Poor old Wigan….

  37. peachesgooner says:

    I wonder how that compares in a spuds psyche to being thrashed by us……..

  38. rico says:

    Hi peaches, I bet they would swap the results in a flash 😉

  39. rico says:

    Hey you all, just to prove that our leader is still in the land of the living, his match report is up as a

    NEW POST…..

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