Manuel Taunts As Arsene Forgives

Ordinarily the post-match interviews are concerned with physical injuries. Hull City’s attempts to be a Blackburn or Bolton – they succeeded, we normally comfortably win home matches against those two sides – has brought forth some injured feelings instead.

Manuel Almunia showed his caring nature, wanting to play the beautiful game rather than against a bunch of low-rent thugs:

There were two or three players that tried to disturb our game and stay between us and try to stop us playing our best football. It is OK, if they don’t know how to play football it is not our problem.

That is something that we have long been used to when watching Arsenal. Even supposed peers resort to leaving boots in if there is an overriding fear of being beaten. It is unusual for an Arsenal player though to demean those who are technically inferior in quite such an open manner. The usual modus operandi is an oblique reference to the physical aspect of the game, showing just how much Hull got up the squad’s noses on Saturday.

Almunia went on:

When it is not all the team, but one or two players who are very nasty, you react. I did it sometimes in the game with Hunt. This is football. I don’t have anything against him but it is not nice to play against these kinds of players.

Hunt is like a yappy little dog who grows out of the armpits of rich women: always there, annoying the hell out of you and serving no purpose whatsoever. The reaction of the players on the one hand was good for the Premier League to see; Arsenal are not afraid to square up and give as good as they get, if not more.

Typically though, the opposing team squeal like little girls, berating whichever Arsenal player is deemed responsible. Phil Brown unsurprisingly sought to deflect attention from his players, telling us that they are ‘genuine‘ and that in no way would they over-react.

Which makes you wonder if his short-sightedness is a genetic failing or whether there was a mass halucination at The Emirates with Garcia in no way falling to the ground theatrically or overstating the impact of the contact made by Nasri. Nor did Nick Barmby or Hunt inflame the situation by behaving in a manner that would not have been unusual if it were outside a pub or kebab shop on Hull’s main drag.

For his part, Samir Nasri is likely to face disciplinary action from the Football Association. Proving that referees require technological help rather than relying on their assistants, Steve Bennett apparently booked Nasri for his reaction to Hunt and Barmby rather than the stamp. Which begs the question as to why the two Hull players were not red-carded for provocation, Barmby certainly put his hand in at least one player’s face.

The suits are not going to be allowed to forget this unless Chelsea, United or Liverpool lose again this coming weekend, in which case the disciplinary department can go back to their usual comatose state.

The match continues to provide a bizarre level of ill-feeling, provoked by the Hull management on their previous visit to The Emirates. Brown has ensured that his association with Sam Allardyce, initially ignored, is now used as a stick with which to beat him.

Arsene, however, is a bigger man than you or I, willing to forgive and forget. Apparently, he does not agree with the abuse that Phil Brown received at the weekend. Sorry, Arsene, have to disagree there. We bear grudges in the stands and having cast aspertions over all and sundry concerned with Arsenal without truly apologising, Brown gets that which he deserves to my tiny mind.

’til Tomorrow.

Posted on December 21, 2009, in Arsenal, Football, Premier League, Premiership, Soccer and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 269 Comments.

  1. Come On Arsenal

  2. what a huge game Villa is

  3. I can’t wait for Sunday’s game, should be a cracker.

    We really need to put a good run together now, capitalise on our rivals dodgy form and build a lead in the league through January.

    We play Villa, Manure, Chavs, and Liverpool in a 2 week stretch. But that is done before the CL gets going again. If we get a decent draw in the FA cup, and through to that round, we could rest our key players for 10 days prior to that stretch.

    It means that in our final 12 league games, the hardest matches look to be away at the scum and hosting hughes’ old team. That looks favourable. If we can get through Febuary in pole position it will all be on for us.

    The midfield look on form, even without cesc, and eduardo and walcott looked sharper than since they returned. With players coming back things are looking bright… If we can just win on Saturday.

  4. Sadly the songs we sang about Phil Brown hardly constitute abuse. Could and should have been much worse. The man is an egotistical moron who ‘posed’ in front of us for the whole game. He is beneath contempt and deserves to be ridiculed.

    I notice the North West supporting hackery is out in force this morning desperately trying to swing the balance of playing power their way. Too late sunshines the horse has bolted…

    …country mile….

  5. yeah hollis, but talk about a defining period just look at the end of January going into February, and Porto aswell as Villa away, Liverpool, Chelsa ans Mnu

  6. Arsene will have had a secret chuckle about the Brown bashing. I’m sure he doesn’t bare a grudge but that doesn’t stop him recognising a total cunt when he sees one, and a bright orange one is easier to spot than most.

    Just like he was ‘sad’ to see Mark Hughes sacked, he ‘doesn’t like’ the anti-Brownism.

  7. Arsene will have had a secret chuckle about the Brown bashing. I’m sure he doesn’t bare a grudge but that doesn’t stop him recognising a total c*** when he sees one, and a bright orange one is easier to spot than most.

    Just like he was ’sad’ to see Mark Hughes sacked, he ‘doesn’t like’ the anti-Brownism.

  8. I cant overemphasise how much the Villa game is crucial to title hopes. We gotta whip them bad.

  9. One game at a time, Zap.

  10. Yogi, you describe Hunt to a tee.

    And Manuel is similarly on the money in his summation of Hull, “…they don’t know how to play football”. Hard to argue with that.

  11. yes i know gary, if we do not beat Villa, well- It’s not over, but i’ll feel less confident about Frank’s country mile

  12. The squad will have had a week to train together prior to the Veeella game. We will be very well prepared.

  13. Btw the fixtures at the end of January are precisely why we will win by a country mile and we will have our noses in front by the end of January.

  14. We need revenge. That 2-2 last season almost broke me into 2 pieces

  15. Yeah why not Frank!

    Our next couple of games are the ones, six points and we become genuine contenders, three or four and we remain outsiders well in the running!

    If injuries begin to ease a little, we will again look the best squad with the African Nations hurting Chelsea more than us. The Hull game was about character and this is the time of year when ours is most questioned.

    No blinking now!

  16. 3 quality signings will win us the title.A keeper a back up CH and a striker
    We have been liucky so far that Gallas and TV have not picked up long term injuries but if it happens we are fucked.Senderos is going in jan so that leaves us with just 3 CH’s

  17. Lets not underestimate Villa i cant remember the last time a team totally outplayed us the way they did at home last season.It was a 2-0 and it was no fluke

  18. That 4 game stretch in the league against our closest rivals and Liverpool shouldn’t see us lose more than 6 points in the standings to anyone. We should have some points in hand on everyone else by then. After that the games get more important but the opposition slightly weaker.

    If the schedule ever set us up for a run at both the League and European Cup it was this one.

    We can strengthen in January. We will get players back from injury also.

    Looks like we will swap Senderos for a new defender. Maybe Wenger will find another diamond as well.

    When you consider that we are yet to see the best of Walcott, Eduardo, Rosicky Bendtner, Vela, Clichy, Diaby on a regular basis, and Arshavin has only just started hitting form then this team looks set to start grinding out wins every weekend.

    Song, Gallas, Vermaalen, Cesc, and RVP have been carrying the side, they wont need to for much longer.

  19. I think you can add Eboue and Denilson to the latter of your two lists, arsenehollis. When these two have played, they’ve both of them rarely been less than outstanding.

  20. When is Bendtner expected to be back?

  21. Nasri and Diaby too, since coming back from their respective injuries, have both played with that winning combination of great workrate and technical brilliance.

  22. Why are the FA picking up on this nasri incident?
    They seem to pick and choose incidents to follow up on. Was it anywhere near as bad as the flying kick by evans on drogba a few weeks ago???
    Everyone was awfully quiet then, except for the man utd players and staff “moaning” about the referees being against them.
    It’s a joke, this league

  23. People used to tread on Jens’ feet all the time.

    A charge for Nasri makes a mockery of all teh fair-play, anti-diving sanctimony getting preached at the minute. It would suggest that if you dive, make the most of any minor incident, you might be able to sneak your way to something favourable, or at least screw your opponent.

    Brown’s nonsense about Garcia afterwards was just a mockery.

    Bennet should be demoted this week after that ludicrous penalty award. So to the linesman in the west ham game.

  24. Since the Blackburn game, the first match of October we had scored 17 league goals before Saturday.

    11 by cesc, rvp, or arshavin, 3 own goals, and 3 by our other players.

    On saturday we got as many goals from players other than our big 3 as in the 2 and a half months previously, in the league.

  25. To be fair to Brown, he did leave the gigantic bluetooth at home.

  26. I hav a feeling diaby will tear villa apart

  27. Wigan vs Bolton has been postponed

  28. Wen will B52 b back.dzeko and subotic.the league is ours

  29. Villa will, as usual, be a tough nut. Excellent, well organised defence, fast counter-attack, plus tall players outstanding on set-pieces – a typical 1-0 rugged side. A good challenge and lessons to be learned. I think the chelsea match was a good practice for this. Both teams have momentum and confidence. Villa are effective contenders for top 4 now, no doubt. We have home advantage. It is a match made for ‘big game’ players, that means Cesc, Diaby, Denilson, Song, Almunia, Gallas, Vermaelen, Sagna (or Eboue), Clichy (I hope) or Traore, Nasri and AA will step up.

    We’ve had the ability for two seasons. It’s the self-belief that’s catching up now.

  30. Sky Sports Breaking news- Nasri could be facing disciplinary action

  31. Sky are not particularly reliable. I suspect it will be impossible to show a stamp as ‘intentional’ and not ‘accidental’ (unlike kicking out on the ground) as Nasri looked for all purposes as if he was going to retrieve the ball and clipped a foot.

    Far more than the Eduardo debacle, if disciplinary action follows it will cause problems for the FA.

  32. oh it’s not, it was just a referee saying that it ”could” happen.

  33. Initially, it looked like Chelsea would not have to worry about missing Drogba and Essien thanks to their massively helpful January schedule (home to Sunderland and Birmingham, away to Hull and Burnley).

    However, after seeing them struggle against West Ham, it’s quite likely they will drop points in those 4 games.

    It will be even worse for them if Anelka’s groin strain lingers, as Kalou and Sturridge upfront sounds more like a first-choice strikeforce for a mid to lower table team. Without Essien, the Chelsea midfield look a little pedestrian, and Cech is still a cause for concern.

    We’re now beginning to see what many of us argued at the beginning of the season, that Arsene had built a great squad that could sustain us through a tough season. Chamakh would have been nice, but the odds were against long-term injuries to both RVP and Bendtner.

    I think this Arsenal team smell blood in the air. Keeping Gallas and Vermaelen healthy and getting Bendtner back will make a huge difference in providing a more physical threat up front.

  34. They never lifted a finger against J.Evans on his foul to Drogba. If Nasri is charged there is course for concern.Conspiracy theory anyone?

  35. A great day on saturday, Denilson ran the show, Eboue was also very good.

    Is there any mention of Barmby getting a ban too? That little prick didn’t even get booked but was lashing out at everyone.

  36. How could you play for Phil Brown and remain a decent person. I’m not questioning anybody’s scruples. Just wondering.

  37. Nasri simply trod on the Hull players foot, a sly move but it wasn’t a stamp as Sky and the Telegraph have tried to make out. The Hull player over-reacted. Barnby’s push in the face was blatant.

    Hunt left his foot in several times on Almunia. Arsharvin got an elbow in the face but just carried on. A Hull player also blatantly pushed Vermaelen in the back as he tried to get to a cross.

    Hull’s time wasting started from kick off it took 25 seconds for goal kicks and throw ons a major reason the 1st half was so disjointed and poor. After they went 1-0 down it took them 5 seconds to get the action started again.

  38. Happy holidays and all that from Zimbabwe to all ACLF buddies. Well done Yogi, a fantastic job!

  39. “Nor did Nick Barmby or Hunt inflame the situation by behaving in a manner that would not have been unusual if it were outside a pub or kebab shop on Hull’s main drag.”

    Love it!

  40. Villa game is surely our 3 points.

  41. William Gallas and his French sidekick are both rubbish ,al those backpasses to Almunia who then has to kick possession away ,the only thing stopping Arsenal from conceding more goals in any given match is Alex Song who drops deep into defence to cover for two clowns .

  42. A little mention for the way Sly came in to the team on saturday night would go down well with me.

    Then our midfield 3 where massive.

    Villa are going to be up for it. Be a great game I think.

  43. Back to you ZimPaul.

  44. Think this january transfer window is one of the most important in recent times. The way it is at present, the one amongts Arsenal, Manchester United and Chelsea who makes the smartest purchases in the window may run away with the league. Currently the form they are in, United and Chelsea are definitely going to make some moves in the window, and definitely they would have more purchasing power than us. Till now we have done a wonderful job keeping amongst the front pack. I think midfield and attack wise we are as good as anybody when we have most of our squad fit, and with a few players coming back in January we should be alright in these departments. But in defence, do we really have a back up to Gallas and Vermaelen that we can trust? We have been lucky that these two have kept fit till now, but I think the time is ripe for us to make a move for a centre back in this window. This is because I have a very sinking feeling that Gallas may be due some time on the sidelines, he seems to get a niggle every alternate game, and till now every season he has broken down at some point. Also with age you can’t expect him to stay fit the entire season while playing virtually every game. I know we all have high hopes on Djourou, but to make this season safe (by safe I don’t mean a guaranteed top four but a title win) we will need someone who can do the job for a couple of seasons and then hand the baton over to Djourou or one of the youths. Whether that player is available at the right price I have no idea, but we will have to trust Wenger to pull it off.

  45. why is Nasri to be banned…

    Supporting Arsenal has become like a tall mountain to climb sometimes…

    Cant these guys just appreciate our artists… Nasri just gave as good as he got… that cunt was breaking up play, and he dealt with it.

    The FA and English media are cunts

  46. hey els.

    i watched the MOTD highlights again. This is what the commentator said when the penalty was given.

    ”It’s a penalty, because a foul was commited in the penalty area.”

  47. We very well without cesc and so this is a massive plus for Arsene and his boys and now what is required for the manager is to sign Matuidi ,Hangeland and Dzeko to complete our treble winning team this season as it is now apparent that our boys are smelling victory all round.

  48. There was lots of rough play all around. Nasri should have gotten the heave-hoe. I just wish futebol players would take a lesson from the NHL. Hit the sucker instead of bitch slapping him. The one Hull City player should have been thrown out. He was trying to hurt the Gunners player on the tackle. Rough is part of the game. Dirty with the intent to hurt someone that person should be thrown out for good. Still Asrenal kicked butt andf took names. The fake fight woke up Arsenal. This set up the Denilson goal and the great play in the second half. Many times a team needs a wake up call. Spam Bobby

  49. Zap,

    I also say the comments on Sky… They said, Sylvester committed an unnecessary foul. Shows they are biased idiots. But nobody is blind as to their real motives.

    Buy or not buy, this team is going to win the league this year. The incident at Liverpool and Saturday shows the guys have grown up now. The common denominator of all our previous teams was that they did not mind a fight

  50. Hi Zap! That’s Profound. Bet you had to sit down and fully appreciate the depth of that punditry. It’s times like that I find myself reach for my thesaurus.


  51. @ Ritesh

    Why do you call him Sylvester? Our man looks more like Tweety. 😀

  52. haha. Desperate times call for desperate measures. It’s like Chris Kamara he always makes me laugh.

  53. To be honest keysesoze i went to Barnet vs Arsenal and I saw him up close, and he looks like a pretty normal human being in the flesh. Sure his head is very big but he’s one of those people that looks more odd on TV

  54. @ LimparAssist

    I’m sure he doesn’t bare a grudge but that doesn’t stop him recognising a total c**t when he sees one, and a bright orange one is easier to spot than most.


  55. The most important signing this january could be Eduardo gaining form and fitness. He’s showing glimpses of a return to his old self. We won’t be able to buy a better striker than him in the market, even for 25M.

  56. Question for the Arsenal faithful:

    Having watched Hunt targeting Almunia for some “accidental” contact, how many now believe he meant to make contact with Cech’s head?

    I always thought it was probably an accident. I’m not so sure. I’m not saying he meant to almost kill Cech but I now believe he intentionally dragged his knee down to “accidentally” hit him…

  57. nando…




  58. Please Traore and Cesc be fit

  59. It’s about time we had Clichy back. He’s been out months now. About time he came back. Ditto Bendtner and Rosicky.

  60. nando….




  61. well said ateeb..

  62. Perfect Ateeb.

    The depth of our squad now looks to be fantastic don’t you think. The way we have coped with the amount of injuries we have is admirable.

  63. I doubt Aston Vanilla will finish in the top four. I’d be surprised if they finished in the top six. I still think Liverpool will recover enough to fight with man utd over third and fourth.

  64. The Arsenal B52 striker will be back in January.

    I agree with Ateeb that having NB52 and Eduardo at their best is much better than shopping around for an off the shelf striker to fit into our style of play. A lot has been made by the media and pundits of Arsenal supposedly needing a huge fucker up front to play route 1 football. A pint sized Arshavin shot down this short sighted logic by putting a lanky Stoke defense twice his size to shame.

    Many forget for example, that Eduardo wears the no. 9 shirt. He’s not wearing No. 9 because it was the only number available. He is a No. 9 striker of the highest order. I’m sure the goal on Saturday will have made him smell some more blood and there’s nothing in the world better than having defenders worrying about where Eduardo or Arshavin are in their box.

    Clichy will be playing by 15th of January, though he’ll be in the squad by the 8th of Jan.

    But for what it’s worth – I’d rather have NB52 and Eduardo in form than buying a new striker.

  65. I agree Pz but we saw Vanilla getting “the rub of the green ” last season with bogus ref decisions and its already begun this season..

  66. god the villa game is gonna be hard, i haven’t been on aclf for a while but i feel that like 2 years ago this could be our year. fingers crossed.

  67. Darius Stone @3:14!!

    Absolutely. Eduardo was given the “9” for a reason…he’s one of the coolest and most clinical finishers in the league. His deft touch is only just beyond his reach now and we all should remember that even if we exclude all the niggles from returning…he’s been back less than 8 months total after an 18 month injury…

  68. Completely agree Ateeb and Darius, not just great to be supporting our world-class number 9 but also spot-on.

    Eduardo is class, which as they the saying goes, is permanent. If he finds form, the possible link play with Arshavin, Rosicky and Fab could catapult us towards trophies.

  69. Also, let’s manage our expectatin snd fears gang…there are no “critical” games yet…

    It’s not even the halfway point…we’re only two games out and there’s tons of football left to play…

    I’m not saying the games aren’t important but there’s no need to panic either.

  70. Yes, with Eduardo back in form and Bendtner back I think we are adequately served in the striker department, even in Van Persie’s absence. But it is the options beyond Vermaelen and Gallas that makes me jittery. Definitely would not want to have either of Silvestre or Senderos in a title deciding game or a cup final against a Drogba or an Ibrahimovich.

  71. Great point Axis.

    Fans fail themselves by not managing expectations. Villa is an important game, but it’s not a contract breaker.

    I have absolutely no doubt that we have players who are technically more superior than Villa. Our challenge has been a mental one and we are a confidence team. The game against Hull was more important than the 3 points in that it gave the players more belief and they fought for each other (literally) as a team.

    Almunia rose to the occasion as the captain and he was very impressive – Song and Diaby were monsters in midfield – Denilson made Dunga wonder what the hell he’s doing playing Melo and Gilberto in the Brazil midfield instead of Denilson and Gilberto. Nasri, Arshavin and Eduardo have started clicking on the pitch. Sly most definitely showed his experience and shepparded play on the left side with the confidence of a veteran.

    We should be more focussed on expressing ourselves and playing our game, rather than worrying too much about Villas supposed power. I’m not saying for us to be complaicent – but the team need to play with purpose and conviction, we already have the talent.

  72. “Definitely would not want to have either of Silvestre or Senderos in a title deciding game or a cup final against a Drogba or an Ibrahimovich.”

    Agreed, Keysersoze. With Big Phil in the team, we’d probaby concede 3 at home.

  73. We will buy a striker to replace RvP, not Eduardo.

  74. That Eduardo turn into the box off a lovely Arshavin pass would’ve made for a sumptuous goal, had his snapshot crept in.

    I think Eduardo is about to explode into form. It was great to see him so eager to strike on Saturday, he’s a real opportunist. A week at London Colney fine-tuning the trusty old Crozilian radar and he’ll be savouring the chance to score again in front of an adoring home crowd. I fancy him to lead the line against the Villains with Andrei coming in off the left or right, and Diaby likewise.

    We haven’t had a full week of London Colney magic to prepare for a game in a long while it seems. Aston Villa is a stern test, for the reasons ZimPaul stated earlier, but it’s one we can go into with full confidence and a belief that we can score at any time.

  75. I think the atmosphere will be gr8

  76. It might be, zap

  77. What makes you so sure, Frank?

  78. About the atmosphere or replacing RvP, Cb?

  79. can any1 plz tel me where can i watch arsenal-hull full highlights.

  80. Some serious snowing going on.

    I hope so Frank the fans are shit sometimes- they were vs villa, the only noise you hear most of the time is the away support, that’s why it’s so quiet vs wigan etc…because about 10 people turn up for them

  81. ganust

    go on the internet and type:

    ”arsenal 3-0 hull epl matches”

  82. Yes, Zap, you are right. I know of at least 4 people with season tickets who will not be attending becuase they go on holiday at Christmas. They never hand over their seats to others either. I do have faith in the emerging Clock End though.

  83. Looks like wet snow from here

  84. frank, I thought you were over your phase of regression..

  85. What does that mean, Kitchen Sink?

  86. That penalty save and really the whole game…major confidence for Almunia. Eduardo’s turn in the box…I’m telling you – he’s close. He could have had three.

    Diaby…hoooo….look out, his presence changes the midfield completely. He draws defenders to him so drasticly that the “static four” that teams use against us loses it’s shape…opens the inside channels for everyone.

  87. Wigan vs Bolton- POSTPONED

  88. replacing RvP.. you’ve been there before..

  89. i was looking forward to that

  90. I don’t want to replace RvP. He is may favourite player. I think that the team should be built around him.

  91. Oh no…not may my

  92. no faith then.. you of all should no the team is built around Wenger..

  93. axis but how many times has this happened? Against Fernebace, Aston Villa, Portsmouth among loads of others we all thought it was abou’s time and then he goes 5 games being crap, then a few looking good, then has a great game…

    A good performance vs Villa could kill this annoying routine.

    Being hampered by injuries doesn’t help either i suppose

  94. No! Andrei’s forefathers have sent a scout down from the mothership. They want their prodigal xenofootiemorph back. Keep your eyes peeled, they’ll get wind he’s an Arsenal man before long and be scouting about up and down the Holloway road. Try and disorientate them if you can, wave your arms and shout ‘I am Arshavin’, in the parlance of those who stayed loyal to Spartacus.

  95. you can watch highlights on

  96. AW is not a player, you silly boy.

  97. The club is built around AW

  98. really.. I was fooled then..

  99. Aw has built this team around no single player Frank.. but you knew that..

  100. I think you are confusing me with AW, Kitchen Sink. I would build the team around RvP….AW is wiser than me. He has not done that and so we are almost RvP-loss proof. Almost.

  101. thats true Frank, I thought you were smarter than you looked..

    … country mile


  103. You don’t know what I look like though do you, Kitchen Sink?

  104. he’s talking about your avatar.

  105. oversimplifying yet again Frank.. but you will get better.. I trust..

  106. I have faith in AW. He indicated that he may need to buy as a result of the RvP injury. I am sure that he will not buy rashly or even at all if the right candidate is available. At this point in time I think that the right candidate is available…probably for the last time in his career.

  107. Why do we never buy players on loan?

  108. Over-simplifying what, Kitchen Sink?

  109. This squad in its current form or with an addition or two in January will not fail to win the EPL and the ECL this season.

  110. I agree axis. We have many exciting players but Abou is maybe the most dynamic of them all. If he can stay fit he will continue to change games for us. This is the year of Abou, the year he takes the prem by storm.

  111. Is that simple enough for you, Kitchen Sink?

  112. The candidate to whom I refer is not a big fuck off bastard as some would have us believe we need.

  113. Arsenal received a controversial penalty, which was repelled by Almunia .
    AA: Somehow Arsenal receives this kind of penalties. It’s good that our keeper repelled this attack. We discussed this penalty. You know, it would have been interesting to have a look at this referee, if he had
    made this “point” against Chelsea or Manchester United….

    Arshavin on the Pen.

  114. i did a BBC sport predictor, and i fairly gave my opinion on each result- by the end of March we will be 10 points clear. Even though i made us lose to Everton and Portsmouth

  115. …country mile….

  116. If we buy a player in January, I hope he is exceedingly dynamic. I just love dynamic players. They play so dynamically, in my opinion. Their dynamism simply defies belief.

  117. David Villa fits the bill..but he may go to the Mancs instead of course. I don’t think he will for a couple of reasons, but then what do I know.

  118. Static players are just so boring. They sit there doing nothing, like a stagnant pool. Dynamic players are like a mighty river, an elegant fountain, a roaring cataract.

  119. You mean pizazz, Pz?

  120. Hey Ya”ll

    I been without internet for the last 5 days,, did we draw Porto in Champs league?

  121. O ,,, I though I read we had to play them some where in the comments//

  122. Would have been nice!

  123. We are playing Inter

  124. Was the draw not last friday?

  125. Ah, Juan Pablo Pizazz. Now there was a dynamic player.

  126. Inter! Even better!!

  127. …and another yep

  128. Tunde d arsenalunatik

    Spot on ritesh! D common demoninator in our title winnin teams has alwys bn that they nevr shy away frm a fyt.
    I fancy us winning the villa game for two reasns; 1. Diaby has alwys bn a torn in their flesh lyk agbonlahor in our’s,if he’s on song he’s unstopable 2nd reasn is we hav smthn they dint face last season:Arshavin!
    Howevr if we dnt win it wunt b d end of our ambitn as there’s stil a long way to go but i rlly fancy us winnin this one,my prediction,3-1. (eduardo,diaby,vermaelen to score) arshavin to take d man of d match award

  129. Do you mean the Villa fight or the fight for Villa, Tunde de aresenalunatik?

  130. Diaby had better wait till after the match to get on Song.

  131. Damn Im excited about inter,,, bring it on!!!!

  132. …I can sell you a ticket for the away fixture if you want, Yoda.

  133. I’m so happy with the way the lads handled this game. In fact, I feel that we bullied them and made them lose their nerves. That’s what we exactly need to do with these kind of players/teams….I say f*ck the game & the FA…you won’t bully us and especially on our own ground.

    What made it sweeter is we bullied them and nailed them too…3-0, take that Brown-hole.

    And why did his assistant Horton or Horse-ass come down from the stands to the tunnel at the end of the game? Looking to stir up another crap lie on Fabregas?

  134. Sorry, Yoda, this isn’t fair. I was only joking. We are not playing Inter in the next round. We are actually playing AC.

  135. Hey Frank,,, It says we play Porto on espn…

  136. ESPN are bastards, Yoda, always playing with us supporters. Don’t believe a word of it. AC I tell you.

  137. hahahahahaha come on Frank

  138. All right Frank !!! Glad I could be of some entertainment this morning,,, Id have been just as happy with any of those 3,,, but Inter would have been my first choice,,,

  139. i think inter would be hardest, then Bayern Munich.

    AC Milan are easiest

  140. We will stuff Porto, Yoda.

  141. We will flog any of them,,,

  142. morning?! oh yeah u live in usa

  143. Frank.

    1 away goal will do it.

    We will crush them here.

    Might be hard at theirs

  144. Oh you are an American, Yoda. That explains it all.

  145. we will Yoda

  146. It would have been especially sweet to stuff Mourinio though.

  147. Roberto Mancini can barely speak english!!

  148. No Im not actually Frank,

  149. I am glad we have avoided Mourinho in this round. After the two Porto games it is entirely possible that RvP will be back for the quarter-finals. If AW lets him.

  150. Oh that explains my confusion, Yoda. What are you then? Not that nationality defines the person. Stereotypes are rarely accurate…except in the case of the Irish.

  151. …and the Scots of course

  152. Oh bugger…theres the Welsh as well

  153. Lord above I had forgotten about the French.

  154. Then there are the Germans and the beach towel thing, almost invariably true.

  155. As I was saying there is a lot in this stereotype thing.

  156. Im x South African, now New Zealand based but I am the Captain of a privately owned Yacht on a circumnavigation of the globe… Makes watching games and keeping up to speed with current events rather tricky…Currently in the Dominican Republic

  157. I thought you said you were American yoda.


  158. Excellent, Yoda, the perfect response.

  159. that explains that

  160. I don’t know what to believe anymore

  161. I was thinking you were on a Space Station and your comms were fucked. Just shows that truth is stranger than fiction.

  162. It would be funny if you were an englishman

  163. I might as well be on a space station some times.. ! At least Id have decent comms,,, No Zap ,, my better half is American .

  164. Top half or bottom half?

  165. I am of english and french decent. and some german is in there some where too.

  166. I like it when she is on top!

  167. USA USA USA

  168. You mean like a shoulder lift type thing?

  169. I hope we are on top of Villa 😉

  170. You a bit of a winker, Ritesh?

  171. Thats exactly what I mean Frank,, although been as tall as she is Id get a better view at the games if I was on top!
    I retract my earlier statement!

  172. She wouldn’t be very happy facing away from the game though would she, Yoda?

  173. I am content being just an Arse fan Frank

  174. Fascinating. F*cking fascinating.

  175. Ah, the comment about signing a forward, Frank. Sorry, got distracted by some intransigent Christmas decorations.

    I know you mean David Villa and I agree that he is our sort of player. Why are you so sure though?

    Personally I’d love to have him….er. not personally, you understand. I mean i would like Arsenal to have him.

  176. Language, Pz!

  177. That is very open and honest of you, Ritesh.

  178. She could care less Frank,,,, she feels for football how I feel for base ball…. I suggested buying her a ticket for England vs America in South Africa next year , she asked me to rather buy her a bottle of wine…

  179. Ah David Villa…
    I think he is very much like a Arsenal player,, we got his mate Ces so why not,, then perhaps when Liverpool get relegated Tores will come over to play for us too.

  180. Torres is better than Villa.

    Don’t get your hopes up we aint buying Villa.

  181. not aston villa david villa.

    Big difference, i’ll let you decide what that is,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

  182. i didnt say we would , but Im probably never going to win the lotto either, still nice to think about it though

  183. Sorry, Consolsbob. I’m just not interested in who plays the female role in Yoda’s marriage.

  184. Who said i was married Pz ,,

  185. Wow. How long have I been gone? Us signing Villa? But I do think having watched him for years that he is better than Torres. They’re two different kinds of strikers but Villa almost always trumps Torres for Spain as he is more suited to the pass and movement football and Torres likes space and tempo.

  186. The day you win the lotto Yoda is the day Citeh realise what a horrible mistake they made, they can’t afford their sponsor (which, by the way means ‘UNITED’ in arabic) and the final stage of their downfall ends with a 4-1 win for us at the Emirates. So, you will be a rich man

  187. The Brain.

    Who knows what Villa would be like here in the EPL. I’m thinking shevchenko to chelski- you never know

  188. I agree, Brain. Villa’s strike rate for Spain is twice Torres’s. That is partly because Torres rarely seems to play a full match – although that is also evidence that Villa is considered superior.

  189. Fair enough, Pz.

    It’s true that some peoples’ sex lives hold a fascination for many but you, like myself, are obviously not of their number.

  190. Zap
    I think Cheva may have been getting past his best bye the time he went to chelski,,, he may have had another good season in Italy due to the slower pace.
    Villa is still young enough to adapt,,

  191. Pz in england he could be shit. Torres was an instant success..

  192. Consol,,PZ
    If you two are done discussing my sex life we can get back to discussing foot ball,,
    Thank you!

  193. I think that AW is a principled man, CB. I know you agree with that. I think that the RvP injury has deeply upset him. Not only the NKVB but Robin himself. Robin put himself in harms way just as he had assumed a crucial role in the squad.

    AW took the unprecedented step of announcing that he would be in for a replacement in January…I know he has since indicated that he will buy only if the right player is available. The right player must be available to play in the ECL as well as EPL this season. The right player must be a proven striker of exceptional ability,after all that is what we have lost with RvPs injury. The right player must have excepional technical ability and be able to fit in with our system.

    David Villa ticks all the boxes.

    Added to which I think that this season is very, very important to AW. His position is not under threat but he personally needs to win at least one big competition. The ECL has to be the top of the tree for him, but I think he believes he can win both the ECL and EPL this year. He will not allow injuries to stop him.

    In the future if we end up with RVP and David Villa and four others up front, then so be it. Players will have to prove themselves. Those two will be the bench-marks. But we are never injury free upfront so I doubt anyone will lose out.

  194. Almunia
    Sagna Vermaelen Gallas Cliche
    Song Fabregas Denilson
    Villa v.Persie Eduardo

  195. let’s say that is our team in 5 years time….

  196. oh and fabianski would be no.1 by then, manuel still has a few years

  197. his time will come again..

  198. Heh.

    If you make a list of reasons why David Villa might sign for AFC, it becomes a plausible transfer.

    Strikers at AFC:

    RVP, Eduardo (As I said in previous posts, as Axis said above, he’s only 8 months back from an 18 month lay off. Like Rosicky, we won’t see consistent fitness from them till the second half of the season, anything they contribute before then is a bonus I feel, Rosicky has, and Eduardo was on course for a great first half of the season before Dudugate & the expected ‘niggles’).

    AA (wasn’t sure whether AW was thinking of him as a striker when he went with the Chelsea line up, I missed a load of AW interviews, but that makes sense now that I’ve seen them.)

    Bendtner, Walcott & Vela in that order relative to age and playing time with the 1st XI.

    JET, Simpson, Watt and others from the reserve/youth teams.

    And one other with experience, it was Adebayor, could have been Chamack. Apart from behaving like a four year old, I think the main reason AW let Ade go was because he couldn’t be bothered to deal with Ade’s ego as he would only have been cover for RVP this season, rotating with his chumsky Bendtner for a starting place in the first XI.

    A new striker would not have to be seen as a replacement for RVP.

  199. That wasn’t his time KS.

    This was, and later in the season he will be doing more of this….

  200. zap I don’t marvel at the obvious moments which capture the unwitting eye..

  201. I think Wenger was angered by RvP’s injury. Anger tends to be more of a scatter gun than a sniper’s rifle, and it often ends up directing some of its ammunition at undeserving targets, as Robin himself is, at least as far as I can tell. Wenger quite quickly began to distance himself from his comment about requiring a new striker, perhaps as a result of his recognition that he had spoken too much in haste.

  202. – which is not to say that Wenger will not buy a striker.

  203. Kitchen Sink he played well that game- that was the highlight….

  204. I agree with Frank,, I think Wenger really wants some thing this season and we are in a good position to strike, we have funds.

  205. plus, last time i checked goals win games

  206. Bye some thing I mean a trophy.

  207. I think that he was incandescent with rage at RvPs injury. But I don’t think he is distancing himself from the comment. Simply pointing out that he will only buy if the right player is available. My view and it has been since he made the first comment is that the right player is available and in the short term at least he is a replacement for RvP.

  208. yep. Yoda what would you want the most? I prefer the ECL

  209. zap I did not post that to compete with you for space..

    what I posted was every moment he contested for the ball against man city not just the good moments.. Rosicky gets the ball and does good with it a lot more than most players which is due largely to his style and approach..

  210. neither did i okks let’s leave it there

  211. @Zap

    I think you misunderstand Diaby’s impact on the game. Certainly there are some games where it’s easy to track his impact…goals, raids into the box etc. But even when he isn’t scoring or making the assist, Diaby’s movent alone opens up defenses whether or not he has the ball. Both goals in the second half at Hull were direct results of Diaby’s movement through the midfield into the final third. Defenders have to converge on him because his pace and range make him a threat…this opens the lanes between defenders for others to get behind.

    Defenders want to stay four across the front of the box against us, this cuts down the passing lanes…eg Burnley where we made it to the edge of the box and then can’t cut through. Diaby runs directly at those lines and he can do it to receive the ball and he can do it with the ball at his feet. This forces defenders to react to him…following him destroys their shape and leaves acres of space behind him for our midfield and strikers to run into. It’s a huge effect. Even when the pass is not going to come Diaby running at defenders collapses their organization…this also releases Song from having to surge forward to the box to set off attacks. This lets him sit deeper and thus our defence is more solid as well.

  212. i take your word.

    I just wish Diaby was a threat in the box though.

  213. He’ll come good…he’s coming to understand his impact…a good goal for him at Hull and he will gain confidence…

  214. Diaby is a threat in the box. In fact, he’s a threat in both boxes.

  215. Does anyone else think that Nasri’s game is very similar to Rosicky’s? It’s pretty cool that we have both in the squad. Different physiques and balance, both love a tackle, can dribble like the finest English drizzle, etc…

    Obviously, as Barton an Hunt have discovered, Nasri is a bit of a cheeky chappie when compared to the more august No.7.

  216. he can also kick the ball so it goes over the white line which is dominant inbetween the 2 posts. This is known as a goal

  217. Zap id take the champions league purely because we have never won it and it is the one jewell missing from our crown.

  218. I’ll go with that Frank. It does make sense. I thought we were going to sign him in the summer to be honest.

    Sorry, Yoda, I never mentioned you or your sex life.

    You must stop thinking that the world is talking about you, it’s just not healthy.

  219. No need to apologize consol I was just been sarcastic,, I was the one who brought it up any way,,
    Not to many things in this world these days are really healthy now are they.

  220. wait….what will actually happen if he does ”take over”

  221. It’s pretty good where I am, Yoda. Then again I try and keep the worst of the world out there ‘out there’.

    I can’t do much about something that big. Where me and mine are, perhaps.

  222. Arsenal vs Aston Villa

  223. Well, if Silent Stan did take over the club, I would expect him to sign a player for the club to try and placate fans’ objections to the change in the clubs set up/structure, although it is apparent it does need a little shake up & some spring cleaning around the club level terrace.

    David Villa?


    Hah hah.
    Hee hee.

    There’s no point wasting any energy on wondering what Stan’s game is (‘Soccer’? Ice Hockey? Unlike the Glazers etc. At least he has a decent record with sport clubs), we’ll find out soon enough.

    Merry Xmas Gunnerlings.

  224. You thought that David Villa would come to us last summer, Cb? Good call. Better than me? I think not…..I thought he would come to Arsenal in late 1981, just before he was born. Had a vision.

    This is great fun. We almost never get to speculate on players on here. Where can you buy that Chumpionship Manager thingy? We might be quite good at it.

  225. Of course we will probably buy Edin Dzeko now. Naaah. Wolfsburg would not let him go and he is cup-tied.

  226. My wife, my seventh wife actually, is having a Ball tonight. Literally. Chandeliers, stretched limos, champagne, canopies…well one in the garden, black tie…the men are only allowed to wear black ties….and dogs. She is a member of the Kennel Club and she has invited all her girlfriends with their dogs. Hence the blokes in black ties. Sadly I am not invited. Neither is Running Dog Capitalist Lackey the Fourth, as named by ConsolsBob, or Lady Neena or Peter. So we are all going out on an adventure.

    …Country mile…..

  227. Damn game between Wigan and Bolton is postponed

  228. What is your point Zap?

  229. i was looking forward to it Maria, there’s nothing to do now.

  230. Axis, I agree with you about Diaby but a lot of the right things we did against Hull are a result of some good wing play by Eboue and Sylvestre. There were many times on saturday where Diaby received the ball a bit infield and Sylvestre would make an overlapping run that drew players away from the ball. This freed Diaby to make a pass or penetrate further forward. This, in turn, caused their defense to have to move around and create these pockets of space. Notice how we hardly played in a way where we pinned Hull inside their own penalty box like we did against Burnley. Teams like these are more than happy to give us the ball and make us play low percentage football.

  231. that may well be true, but at the end of the day at 3 points during the 90 minutes during which we contested an association football match against Hull city football club the ball made contact with the back of their net which they were defending allowing us to score. We completed this process 3 times.

  232. Gains – you’re absolutely right.

    Diaby isn’t the only one who drags defenses off their line…and when all the strikers and mids are making runs at the defense…well 3-0 to the Arsenal is the result.

  233. I think that a player like Diaby adds a lot to the team when we are able to keep the opposition chasing shadows like we did against Hull. My point is that we need proper wing play in order to make our 4-3-3 work. Sylvestre and Eboue were key in allowing Diaby and Arshavin to wreak havoc.

  234. He is also able to assist the team with the co-operative effort within the team to put the football past the white line inbetween the two posts. This is called a goal, and is the aim of the sport of football, in which Arsenal football team participates.

  235. No argument from me Gains…without the wing outlet, running at the defense carries no threat, and the defender can stay home.

  236. Did Frank mean canopies or canapes?

  237. but what fascinates me about our wingplay is that it does so well to contribute to our ambition each game which is to manouvre the ball past the white line that lies inbetween the two posts, therefore scoring a goal for the mighty Arsenal Football Club

  238. ….Nando….

  239. Nando….

  240. I haven’t laughed so much…………guys you MUST listen to this Arsenal podcast it’s soooooooooooo funny……..listen to this and you never listen to that Arsecast nonesense…….

    It’s Up For Grabs Now – The Arsenal Podcast with Alan Davies Join TV star and Uber-Gunner, Alan Davies and guests for a discussion on Arsenal, Arsenal and Arsenal.

  241. It’s excellent.

    Real gooners.

  242. Zapo (and everyone else)…
    Por favoro…

  243. SomeRandomGunner


    Is it a real picture not a morphed stunt show with ropes . :D.

    And anybody ever noticed that whenever Denilson wants to dribble he falls with his back to the ground.

    By the way i am not a Denilson basher , I am a fan of him. If cesc comes back who would make way for him ? Denilson or Diaby i guess for villa Denilson will sit out for height reasons.

  244. Thanks for the link Maria, that was hilarious!

  245. Where is everybody? Christmas shopping?

  246. some very funny comments at 5pm last night. Was having a chuckle while catching up.

  247. Wenger: “We’ll be going for the title in the New Year”


    Merry Christmas to the ACLF Massive, and an Arsenal New Year to all x

  248. Back to you Limpar.

    Any news on what the Fa decideds to do with Nasri on his alleged “stamp” on that c*nt player?

  249. @firstlady

    apparently, the fa has asked for a review of it.

    can someone please tell me what a “stamp” means??

    and apparently, song is involved as well.

    the amazing thing is that there is no mention of hunt’s hand on nasri’s throat.

    i think the fa are stepping in as well, to give chelsea and man u a hand.

  250. Limpar hava good one matey.

    no7 don’t forget Barmby he could snapped nasri’s head off the way he landed on his head.

    You’d think barmby would be a little more reserved at his age, one boot to the hip and Barmby would be on the replacement list me thinks.

  251. Firstlady,

    It all comes down to whether or not they think that quietly treading on someone’s foot is ‘violent conduct’. If they do then it’s a three match ban. I’m hoping that just ‘reviewing the incident’ is action enough for the FA to make their point. Then they can f*ck off and leave us be.

  252. Firstlady…Christmas shopping??? LOL! What’s that.

    That Nasri story is pissing me off the more I look at it. Here’s my 2 cents about the whole affair.

    Maria – thanks for the link to that Alan Davies podcast

  253. Darius, yes Chrismas gift shopping or whatever its called, it seemed to be alittle quiet in here so that’s why I asked.

    As long as the rest of the players(those two city twats) who were involved also get the ban then it would be fair. Otherwise they should just leave us alone. Song holding that player by the scruff of the neck and Silvestre butting in was the highlight for me. We got us some steel. yay! yay!

  254. Diaby did a lot to diffuse the situatuon. He stood like a pillar amongst the crazed Hullites who swarmed about him, with his arm outstretched and simply said, ‘No. Not today, Hull. Not on Abou’s watch’. And Hull all p*ssed themselves to a man.

  255. ACLF is one of the best arsenal blogs around.
    than god for DIABY, DENILSON,and SONG.

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