Well: We can’t blame Diaby this time..

November 22, 2009

After 2 weeks wait our team failed us, what went wrong?  I don’t really know, a slight attitude problem I would guess. We need more desire to win.  We need to believe..

If we still need to find a scapegoat  we cannot for a change point the finger at our favourite villains Diaby, Eboue or Bendtner.
If we were the darling buds of  the media we could blame it on our massive injury list.. But only Liverpool have top players out.. Instead we are just bottlers in their eyes.

I think the finger of blame should go to, well at least to some extent to Mr Wenger OBE, it wasn’t fair on Eduardo to be leading a line with Nasri and Rosicky as his strike partners. Now I love all three of these players but to expect them to lead the line was asking too much.
All three are still trying to recover their pre injury form.

Also with Dudu he is not a traditional no 9 type striker and to have him up top on his own is never his natural position, as I said when he was starting to comeback from his leg break, don’t expect too much from him, he wasn’t a world beater before the injury, but we made him up to be the greatest player on earth because we all wanted him to make a full recovery, but perhaps he became better than he really was in our eyes. Or could the media reaction to his definate penalty against Celtic affected him? He was shaping up okay until then..  I would have liked to have seen AA start even if he was a bit tired, just to take some of the scoring burden away from Dudu’s shoulders.

The other disappointment for me was Aaron Ramsey, we all saw the highlights of him playing for Wales against Scotland last week, he ran the game, but we never see him do the same for Arsenal, wouldn’t it be easier to fit into Arsenal’s sleek system rather than the longer ball way of Wales?  Is it that the Premiership is of a far higher level than the international scene or is he overwhelmed by playing next to such quality players?.. Who knows..

One thing is for sure we cannot keep losing games like this.. This is a squad of players that come around every four or five years and we have to make the most of it before they start an exodus one by one, leaving us to rebuild again like we had to when Hleb and Flamini left a few years ago.

But in fairness we were in such control in the first 30 minutes we should have put a chance or two away, the best one going to Eduardo but the ball was too far underneath him and he could not get a clean strike on the bit. But as usual we allowed the opposition to gain confidence and Sunderland were a half decent side in the second half.
Have we heard that before?

Almunia.. 6.. Never had much to do in reality, perhaps he could have come for the corner that lead to the goal, but I doubt if he would have got to it as it was curling away.

Sagna.. 7.. Was our main attacking threat from the flanks, I just wish he would cut inside now and again and do a give and go, his crossing is too predictable.

Gallas 7.5 Our best defender yesterday and he also has the winning mentality, it’s a pity some of our attackers don’t have the same desire.

Vermaelen 6.. A pretty average performance from him for a change, at fault for the goal. He lost a header to Darren Bent then failed to recover when the ball came back in the box.

Traore. 6.5 .. Without knowing it I think he may of put in a transfer request yesterday (Saturday) he isn’t as good as either Clichy or Gibbs so he is probably third in the pecking order unless either of the other two go. He wasn’t terrible (better than Silvestre) but he made some terrible cross field passes in front of our penalty area.

Song.. 7.5.. Played pretty well, The ref didn’t like his style of defending unless the boot was on the other foot and a Sunderland player did the same thing.  Done well not to be booked..

Fabregas.. 7.. Tried to play the captains role but frustratingly started to settle for long-range shots at goal…

Nasri.. 6.5 Tidy, but never really got into the game. He should have been fresh as a daisy after a rest, and with a few matches behind him, looked a little lethargic.

Rosicky.. 6.5.. Same as Nasri.. Never really got into the game as well as he can.

Ramsey. 6.. Forgot he was playing in some parts of the game, it was obvious he was going to be the one coming off first.

Eduardo.. 6. As I said earlier, I don’t think the role suits him leading the line as the sole striker.

Subs..

Arshavin 6.5.. Never really looked too interested after he got dumped on his arse a couple of times, surely it isn’t too cold for him..

Walcott.. 6.5.. Looked lively, but just went through the motions, did a very good ball across the six yard box that no one latched on to.

Vela. 6.. Didn’t really look any different from Eduardo, left footed and a bit lightweight. Sky never managed to show a replay of the penalty shout mmmm.

So all in all a bit of a piss off, I just  hope normal service will be resumed next week.

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To Win It, You Have Got To Want It.

November 22, 2009

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.


What do points mean? …………………

November 21, 2009

Prizes, thats what points mean, and today we are going for the Brucie Bonus 🙂

I am still smiling from a comment London made yesterday. The wise man had found out that our game against Sunderland was being shown live on Italia television and that all we have to do is find a good Italian bar, sit down with a few beers and watch the game.

Here I am sat in a tiny village; lucky to have a local public house and a post office, and all I now want to do is find a little Italian bar with a television! It just isn’t going to happen, sadly!

You have a good time London, hopefully watching us score a few 😛

What a day yesterday! The Henry debate goes on… and on and on, Arson suggests a replay, as does Thierry – then one of the biggest bullies in the game tells ROI to get over it and me, I’m just bored with it so that’s the last time it finds its way into a post – well one that I write anyway!

What saddens me though is all the lack of football news because of what has been going on.

Wojciech Szczensy’s loan to Brentford is the only bit of news I can find about us, oh and Fat Frank is having the same kind of treatment that Robin is having in attempt to speed up his recovery. I am not sure there is a horse big enough out there!

On to our little game today 😛

Do we think Arshavin will be rested? – I personally can’t understand why he would be, especially as during the last few games for us he has had a gentle work out so he shouldn’t be too tired! I know he played midweek but he is a fit footballer and should be able to manage another stroll around today. Rest him on Tuesday please, not today. Sunderland will fear him and that’s half the battle won.

Same goes for Cesc, Gallas and Sagna, rest them on Tuesday if needed, not today..

But Wenger pointedly said that the mental and physical fatigue of international fixtures had taken a toll on the French contingent and Andrey Arshavin, so my hopes will be dashed when the team is announced 😉

Theo is in the squad, I hope he is a sub and comes on for twenty minutes, against what should be a tiring defence by then 😛

Same goes for Denilson and Vela, if they are in the squad, start the game with them on the bench – Tuesday at home would be a better game for some of these players to start, not today in what could be a tricky trip up t’north and where three points are so so important.

Sunderlands last few results – won one, lost two and drawn three. They beat The Dippers, drew against The Mancs and got beat by the Spuds!!! Work that lot out …

Like us though, Sunderland are having a tough time with injuries. Their keeper Gordon is out and Fulop takes his place, and they are missing Cattermole, Turner, Jones and Anderson.

For them, that must be like our injury list so all is equal!

Last season we drew 1-1, but last season we couldn’t find that small gap between two posts. This season is a different story and we are creating more clear-cut chances and taking them. I honestly can’t see any other result than an away win, but football is a funny old game 😉

Arson says:-
“The game against Chelsea has more significance if we win at Sunderland’.

Of course it will, but if you make too many changes today Arson, we won’t get all three points, the winning run will have been broken and with it will go a little bit of our players confidence.

We have a big week ahead and after the next three games we COULD be top of the English Premiership, top of the group in the Champions League and sitting pretty as we head into December.

Just start with the strongest eleven we have fit and we will win!

I am sticking with

Almunia
Sagna TV Gallas Silvestre
Cesc Song Rosicky
Nasri Eduardo Arshavin

But I don’t for one minute think that I will be right! 😉

Have a great day

A question to leave you with about the ACON – Who would you trust more, Ramsey or Denilson?


‘Phew’ says Arson – It could have been worse…….

November 20, 2009

That’s an expression I really dislike!

Being the sufferer of bad bones as I am, in the days when I lived with my Mother and would be in dreadful pain and discomfort, she would often say, well think youself lucky, look at so and so up in the village, she’s in a wheelchair with her Arthritis!!

I replied, ‘Mum, she is 86 years old, I am still very young’. ‘Well’ she would reply, ‘I could be worse’!! Arrrrggg!!

Arson is so right though, had Gibbs and van Persie’s injuries been a lot more severe than we would all be pretty down. Thankfully though the Boss says Kieran should be back midweek for the Champions League game and Robin should be back in time for his Christmas Pudding!

Arson, it could have been a whole lot better too if you could learn to tell our players that international friendlies are not worth the trouble! Just stop them going and this kind of thing won’t happen!

What’s going on in this crazy world of football, Big Sol has said we are the best, he is currently staying fit by training with us, and says this:-

“I am training at Arsenal and keeping fit, which is the main thing and that, is fantastic,” he continued.
“I needed to train somewhere, Arsene [Wenger] has done me a great favor and you can’t do any better than Arsenal.”

Even old Brucie Boy has said he owes our boss big time following the loan deals of Bendtner, Muamba and Larsson – Brucie reckons we have a genius for a manager and a great crop of young players. The future is bright for us he says…

Good man, we have known that for ages Brucie, but it’s good to hear ex pro’s like you come out and say such a thing, especially when those idiots on Sky and the BBC keep saying we are too young, lack experience blah, blah, blah!!

You are right, we have a very bright future ahead of us at Arsenal and Liam Brady confirms that too. He has told afc.com that Kieran Gibbs and Jack Wilshere are just the beginning of a large bunch of youth ready to burst on to the scene.

Bit of injury news – Fabianski, Vela, Denilson and Traore are now off the injured list, Diaby and Walcott are close to a return. I suspect we will see of four above on the bench for Sunderland with Walcott and Diaby taking their seats in the week. Gibbs will be back before The Chav game too, which is good news.

On to Sunderland, I have gone from thinking that Sagna should move to LB with Eboue playing RB to thinking JonJon is right, we shouldn’t have a right footed player playing on the left so now I think Arson has a big decision to make.

Mind you Flamini did ok if my memory serves me right! 😉

Silvestre is a left footed defender, and for the Mancs he often played in the LB position. Surely this is the kind of game where he can be used to cover for Gibbs who is covering for Clichy.
If he doesn’t play there on Saturday, why the heck are we keeping him? Why the heck are we wasting money paying his wages if he is only going to be a bit of experience to add to the Carling Cup team? No, if he doesn’t play then let’s ship him out and use the money to secure Merida’s future!

Not a lot of other gossip in the papers this morning, the back pages are still focusing on Thierry Henry and how is has the new ‘Hand of God’! Even ex Gooners Winterburn and Dixon have joined in and branded him a cheat!

Have a great day folks – tomorrow is match day.

😛


Finally something to smile about……………………

November 19, 2009

Two bits of good news were announced yesterday, one is that Kieran Gibbs has not suffered any break to his ankle he just has some bad bruising and won’t be out for long. I don’t expect we will see him at the weekend, but back in time for The Chavs I hope. Silvestre ‘should’ be able to cope against Sunderland on Saturday but The Chavs are a bit of a different story.

The second bit of news is that Eduardo has signed a new long term contract. Let’s hope this means that any injury concerns or mental issues we were all concerned about, are no longer. There is a nice picture of Ivan and Eduardo ‘doing the business’ on afc.com if anyone is interested.

Just how silly must all of those reporters who wrote rather large articles about Eduardo at the weekend feel? They had him leaving us in January for £10M and of all places they reported him to be going was Liverpool! I didn’t really believe it at the time, I doubt anyone really did. Madrid, maybe, but Liverpool…. Nah!!

So two bits of good news indeed, followed by no further injury reports from last nights games, Sagna had a good game and Gallas scored the goal that knocked out the Irish.

And what a goal is was too – what a muck up by the officials in such a big game!! Two offside before Henry ‘controlled’ the ball and then the biggest bit of cheating I have seen since Madonna’s hand.

Thierry Henry should be ashamed of himself this morning. Waking up and coming to terms with the fact that the whole world, apart from the French thinks you’re a cheat. For once, I am glad the great man no longer plays for us! I don’t think I could stand watching Sky Sports report all day on the incident.

He wouldn’t be reported as a French player, a French cheat, no, he would be a cheat who plays for Arsenal.
Anyway, he is a Barça player, and this morning I am very glad about that! Don’t think that admitting it was handball will get you a reprieve though Thierry!!

Sad news for Russia, they won’t be travelling to South Africa next summer, unless it’s to go on holiday, they are out. Selfish of me maybe, but I don’t care. Arshavin will get a rest and we will get the benefit.

That is one of the reason’s, not the main reason of course, that I hope ROI would win last night… I had hoped that Clichy, Sagna, Diaby and Gallas all had a good rest during the summer break. Mind you, I am not sure Gallas will be with us next season.

Cesc came through a whole game unscathed, that’s more good news. He managed to score one in Spain’s 5-1 win and pick up a yellow card on the way, not that I am fussed about that!

Eboue played too last night and he grabbed himself a goal too – watch out Eduardo you have some stiff competition now 😉

So, no new injuries to report and that is the most important thing for Arsenal.

That’s it for a while now, no silly international games, meaningless friendlies or any other ‘country get together’ no, its Premier League, Champions League and Domestic Cup competition right through into the new year now – Hoorah!!

First up is Sunderland away on Saturday, 3pm kick off – a tough game for us I think, but one we will win – just!

I know we have a few injury concerns, but so do Sunderland. No Gordon, Jones or Cattermole. Apart from Bendtner, van Persie and Gibbs, until Arson updates us on those who have trained this week we can’t be sure of who will play or not.

I just hope he plays the strongest eleven available and brings home the three points. Forget The Chavs until it’s time to play them. This game is a must win, we are on a winning run and we don’t want that to change. Don’t rest Song, Gallas or Sagna – play them all and get the points, put the pressure on the teams around us and let them be the ones to crack, not us!

Have a great day all, two days left to wait

Just for peaches, oh and me!

😛


‘Jump’ – I would be thinking how high! …………..

November 18, 2009

Well, I would be if I were one of those players having to play tonight and some nutter came sliding in towards me with a hard tackle in mind! We cannot afford any more injuries and the loss of any of the players mentioned below would be just awful. It doesn’t even bare thinking about!

Even Sir Bobby Pires is concerned for us, but still believes we have enough strength and depth to get through this tough time.

These are tonight’s fixtures:-

Wednesday, 18 November 2009
FIFA World Cup European Qualifying

France v Rep of Ireland
Slovenia v Russia

International Match – Well, poxy friendly matches

Austria v Spain
Germany v Ivory Coast

My calculation is that’s Gallas, Sagna, Nasri, Arshavin, Eboue and Fabregas all possibly, even probably involved in a match tonight. Eboue and Cesc are playing in worthless friendly matches!

I just hope both Cesc and Eboue don’t even play tonight. Yes, even Eboue. I think Arson will play him at RB and move Sagna to LB if Gibbs injury is a bad as we fear. Some of the news this morning reports that Gibbs injury is suspected to be a broken metatarsal!

Here is the current injury list from afc.com – I guess though we can add Gibbs to that list!

Robin Van Persie
Nicklas Bendtner
Carlos Vela
Theo Walcott
Denilson
Armand Traore
Gael Clichy
Lukasz Fabianski
Jack Wilshere
Johan Djourou
Abou Diaby

I make that twelve players now out injured, and that’s before any match kicks off tonight. I am just glad Belgium and The Czech Republic aren’t playing as well! In fact I don’t think either have qualified either so Vermaelen and Rosicky will both have a good rest next summer!

Some of those injured are supposed to be back in training this week, but I can’t see Arson saying anything other than ‘they are a little bit short’ for the Sunderland game. I guess we will know more in his pre-match interview at the end of the week.

Talking of Arson, he has confirmed that Denilson will be player to fill the void left by Song during the ACON. On afc.com he said despite Nasri being perfectly able to play in that role, it would be Denilson as Nasri is ‘more attracted to the offensive side of the game’.

There was me hoping he would say something like ‘When Song leaves us in January, I have a deal in place that will mean a new player will be joining Arsenal on the first day of the new transfer season, he will fill that role’

It’s good to dream 😛

Personally I would be very happy in we nipped in a bought Mahamadou Diarra from Real Madrid, he is supposedly one of six players to be sold off in January. Only problem with him though is he will also be at the ACON.

Mind you how good are Mali? – He could be ready to play in the third week of January 😉

For those who missed it, check out BBCi for Silent Stan – get to know all about Stan Kroenke!
Someone on the show said ‘If he invests it’s for a winner, if he buys in it, he invests in it’
But its football you guys, football – Not bloomin Soccer….!!

That’s all folks – just think, tomorrow the international break is over, our players will be on their way back ‘home’ to London. Then we will know which players are in and which are out for the trip up north.

Fingers and toes crossed for tonight!!


Poor old Cesc is off to the shops! …..

November 17, 2009

You can tell it is International fortnight can’t you, Cesc goes off to join his fellow Spaniards and the gutter press get themselves all excited. They know they can fire silly questions at our captain and Barca players, then add whatever answer they want to the question and then print it, in fact worse than that they ad a few “ “ either side of the rubbish they write!

Today its the turn of Carles Puyol, fellow Spaniard and Barcelona player to add his bit about Cesc.

“Cesc would have his reasons, to go, and would have the same opportunities that he has at Arsenal. The market dictates the value and you pay a lot for players of a high level but if he comes I hope we don’t pay much,” Puyol remarked.

To go where? Where is the question you put to Puyol relating to the answer, after all the reporter could have asked Cesc if he was off to the shops as he had run out of milk, then of course he would have ‘reasons to go’!

Stupid example – yes, but I am sure you get my point, the only time any Barcelona player will see Cesc at the Nou Camp is if we draw them in the semi-final of the Champions League! Simples!

£60 Million is now the amount bantered around to be the value of our captain; Barcelona and Real Madrid are to commence battle in order to sign him… What utter rubbish!

Fabregas said: ‘‘I am ignoring any talk about my future. I live day to day and my dream is to win the Premier League with Arsenal this season.’’

That’s all we need to hear!

Rasp commented yesterday about the bizarre treatment that Robin van Persie is to undergo in order to heal quicker.

‘Crocked Arsenal striker Robin van Persie has resorted to an unorthodox treatment in order to rush him back into action – rubbing placenta fluid into his injured ankle.’

Not a bubble in sight for his ankle, that makes a change, but in all honesty I am sure none of us mind what he tries especially if it heals his injury quicker, and personally the news that our medical staff will not be anywhere near him increases his chance of a quicker return too!! 😉

I read somewhere yesterday about giving thought to Roman Pavlyuchenko, would he be a better option to buy in January? Chamakh will be taking part in the ACON ( I had forgotten that) so we wouldn’t see him at Arsenal until February in any case.

Pavlyuchenko however is used to the EPL, isn’t CL cup tied (of course he isn’t he plays for Spurs!) and I am sure under our manager he would find his shooting boots..

Now that’s one to think about – I think it’s hard to judge him, after all its a bit like watching a striker in a Division 3 side play and wondering if he would be good enough for Arsenal…. 🙂

That’s it for today; the news is mainly filled with human and horse placenta, the mind boggles..

Have a great day folks….