Bolton Preview: Stand And Deliver

A throwback to ‘The Good Old Days‘ this week with two fixtures against Bolton Wanderers, reminiscent of Christmas’s long ago when home and away clashes with the same opposition took place within 48 hours, usually 24. The two clubs have had this proximity of fixtures before, November 1919 saw two 2 – 2 draws in the space of a week.

Christmas 1922 saw Arsenal slump 1 – 4 only to win 5 – 0 the following day; September 1927 saw a 2 – 2 draw at Burnden Park, 5 days later 2 – 1 to The Arsenal at Highbury; September 1958, a 6 – 1 Arsenal victory was followed by a 2 – 1 defeat. But enough of that tangent, for it is of no relevance to this afternoon, merely an interesting aside.

Injuries dominate the Arsenal skyline, Samir Nasri pulling a muscle yesterday in training rendering him doubtful which makes the midfield interesting to say the least, given Denilson and Aaron Ramsey are reportedly not available. Which probably topped Arsene’s Saturday off, with Chelsea and Manchester United both having comfortable wins, expanding the gap at the top, hopefully only on temporary basis though.

A win is always vital when fighting for the title, to keep up with rivals or to capitalise on their mistakes. Six points this week will, in all likelihood, take Arsenal top, four goal victory margins required in total to ensure that happens. It would leave Chelsea with a game in hand but put pressure back on them. This is the crucial aspect of this afternoon; how Arsenal handle that pressure.

There is no ‘get out clause‘, claims that the squad is inexperienced do not wash. The players will-to-win needs to be evident, backing up their talk, to ensure that the results are delivered. And, on paper, they should deliver comfortably. Sadly football is played on grass and the apppointment of Owen Coyle as manager will invigorate the previously lacklustre players of Bolton.

We have been here on numerous occasions before, most notably when Stuart Pearce took over at Nottingham Forest, a similarly insipid shadow of previous glories, inspired them to an unlikely win over Arsenal. Pearce admitted afterwards that his initial line-up looked good until his wife pointed out the absence of a goalkeeper might be a flaw in his plans. That afternoon, Pearce could have left out a goalkeeper so blunt was the Arsenal attack but it also gave an indication of the turn his managerial career might take.

The robustness of Bolton’s play used to be something they could build upon but this season, they have precious little in attacking threat, Gary Megson preferring defenders as his signings, a policy which ultimately cost him his job.

Kevin Davies, one of the most booked players in the Premier League, remembers this and having seen yellow on 9 occasions against Arsenal alone, has been keen to whip up that mentality. He seems to have forgotten that Abou Diaby was more than capable of making his Bolton foes ‘scream‘ – to use Davies’ own description about Arsenal players after they have been tackled.

Crucial to a win will be avoiding the slips which have been costly at Bolton in the past. Yet for all that, Arsenal has won the last half-a-dozen or so games, home and away, against them. Some have been comfortable, some dogged and two years ago, 10 men oozed class to come back from two goals down and win. These performances are the ones which are relevant to this afternoon, as has been the ability to win at traditionally difficult venues this season.

Sol Campbell’s Arsenal return is pencilled in for next Sunday’s visit to The Potteries, William Gallas’ niggle will presumably be covered by Mikael Silvestre in the event that he is not fit for duty today.

If it is a choice between today and Wednesday, Gallas should be picked this afternoon, his experience vital for a patched up midfield. Vermaelen could move into the defensive position in the central triumverate but I believe this would be unsettling for the defence, already likely to change with Gael Clichy available, Abou Diaby more than capable of fulfilling defensive duties.

The line-up I would expect to see is:

Almunia; Sagna, Vermaelen, Gallas, Clichy; Rosicky, Fabregas, Diaby; Vela, Arshavin, Eduardo

If Wenger wants more midfield presence rather than three strikers, Merida could drop into the Rosicky role pushing the Czech further forward at Vela’s expense. Both the Mexican and Spaniard are due big games and this afternoon is as good a platform as any. Enjoy the match wherever you are watching it.

’til Tomorrow.

Posted on January 17, 2010, in Arsenal, Football, Premier League, Premiership, Soccer and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 311 Comments.

  1. Shame about Nasri, but as you say, there’ll be nowhere to hide and a positive performance is demanded.

    Owen Coyle has no intention of rolling over and losing his first 2 matches as Bolton boss and that makes the next 2 games a tricky opposition. But it’s this sort of pressure that we have to overcome and build the momentum.

    Vela has an opportunity to give Wenger a selection headache – and his pace will help stretch the Bolton defense.

  2. Where did you get the news of the Nasri injury please?

    If we are good enough to be champions, we need to bring our best to every game now. No more like Everton.

    If we win, I think there will be changes to the side on Wednesday and Saturday. Arshavin should get a rest, the centre-backs in the cup, and we need to protect Diaby and Cesc at the moment.

    4-1 Arsenal, then the same at home I reckon. By a week wednesday, we will have everybody fit but for RVP, Djourou, and Gibbs.

    We will storm through the next 6 league games, be top of the league after the Chelsea game, and never leave that spot.


  4. Hope we start well , with the pressing and and the passing. If we do that well then i guess we will 4-0 or 3-0

    C O Y G

  5. Looking forward to the match.

  6. VaughntheSAGunner

    Anyone know when Nasri picked pu his injury, cus I cant locate news about it anywhere?

  7. We need to show some defensive stability and focus, especially with the best sides and attackers up soon.

  8. VaughntheSAGunner

    A hope we’re focused and have learnt our lesson from the Everton game. We need to be at 110% from the the off, if we are, there is no doubting our quality and hopefully by the time we’re walking out against Stoke, we are top of the prem!

  9. I`d like to know what has been going on in training this week. First Ramsey & now Nasri ?

    It leaves the bench a bit thin to say the least & we can`t afford any more injuries today with the upcoming heavy fixture list

  10. I fancy Ramsey getting the DM role today.. we need Diaby to use his strengths at the other end of the field minue a proper striker.

  11. Arsenehollis

    Nasri – Sunday Mirror or News of the Screws which whilst totally unreliable on the transfer front, tend to be reasonably accurate on injuries.


    Ramsey was on Friday – cannot remember where but the Saturday papers carried it as well. He is due back for the Stoke game according to The Guardian.


  12. argh!!

    nasri we can cope without, vela can deputise.

    ramsey is a proper miss today.

  13. ‘Sadly’ football is played on grass, Yogi? I’ve always been rather fond of the grass – especially as an Arsenal fan.

  14. Another injury! Hopefully only a niggle. I feel confident that we have overcome our fat Sam hoodoo but under new management they will have extra motivation. A tough outing but the gooners to emerge victorious. We are not a soft touch anymore.3 – 1.

    Could Sunderland have tried any harder to give the game to Chelsea at the bridge. The never gave us an inch at the stadium of light but gave chelsea the key to the city at the bridge. They deserve to be relegated for such a pathetic show. ..and they call us gutless.

  15. Diaby is more than capable of fulfilling defensive duties? I think you’re right – but he hasn’t had to in a long time – he’s going to have to turn up big time today. C’mon Abou! Do it son! I think we might see Cesc playing pretty deep too, to help him out.

  16. Yogi,

    i have looked in both the mirror and NOWT, nothing about nasri.

  17. Diaby’s first match in DM was against Bolton back in the FA Cup a few years ago. Played with great discipline (incidentally with Denilson higher up).

    Bolton are not quite as physical as they were a few years ago but I’m sure they’ll try to rough us up anyhow. They’re direct and the best way for them to stop us is by stopping the ball getting wide. But we have Fabregas back and I’m sure we’ll win against a side who are tactically quite poor although Coyle will bring more expansion to their team.

  18. Cheers Yogi.

    What a drag waiting for a game a whole week. Then we play Sunday 4pm, too much to take.

    We have a week clear leading in to the Chav match, it would be one of the sweeter breaks, if we can take 3 points from old red nose the SUnday before.

  19. Could you write the exact source of Nasri’s injury? I can’t find it anywhere.

  20. I’m sorry, are people under the impression YW made up the Nasri thing for a laugh? All these weird demands for a source.

  21. Stammers may have Nasri & Ramsey mixed up.

  22. doubt people are questioning the validty of the post, more they wish to view the original source just to read the full story for themselves.

  23. Steve Stammers is an AFC friendly journalist with some inside contacts so I think he’s probably reliable on this injury. I’m disappointed about losing Nasri as he is great at keeping possession and can score goals.

  24. “Stammers may have Nasri & Ramsey mixed up.”

    One can only hope, except the fact that Ramsey’s injury happened a couple of days earlier, I doubt it.

  25. He may have inside information, but since Steve Stammers was one of the chief Cesc to Barcelona twats one can never be sure.

  26. Passenal.

    Incidentally, Steve Stammers and his colleague at the Mirror Darren Lewis (who is a self confessed Liverpool fan) are 2 journalists who have put their necks on the line by predicting from the beginning of the season that Arsenal would win the league.

    They still stick their necks out despite the ridicule they get from their prediction but I like the way they defend their position and insist that the evidence so far hasn’t proven them wrong.

  27. Arsenal are a fantastic side , and a side we would all like to play like , Bolton play to their strenghs and cant be knocked for doing so. you lot are getting very much like the scum down the road at old trafford very arrogant! Bolton will be worth atleast a Draw .

  28. what a game..

    what a team..

    what a style..

  29. What exactly is it that you find arrogant Ardal? Is it that we think we’re going to win this game or that we think we’re going to win the league? If it’s the first then every team up and down the country is guilty of that sin. If it’s the second then the simple rebuttal is that no team won anything by believing they were going to win nothing.

    You’re right Bolton are capable of getting a draw. Hell, they even have it in them to win it. But that’s the case with every team in the premier league. No team can be underestimated in this league. But as an Arsenal fan I still think that we’ll come out on top. To be perfectly honest you shouldn’t expect anything else from the people that frequent an arsenal blog.

  30. Yes, Serk. What exactly would he have expected?

    Strange folk around these days.

  31. Can anyone please tell me when the match starts?
    In hours left.

  32. 1 hour to go A T G.

  33. 1 hour.

    Hello Bob, how you doing?

  34. eduardo has looked very sharp indeed recently i think hes in for a hattrick.

    You heared it here first.

  35. What the f*ck is in the water down at the Emirates??


    England played like a bunch of women today! absolute joke how they can be so good then…. the old shite performance comes back with a bang.

  36. india lost 8 to bangladesh ( the ordinary side) a great story there also

  37. Thanks,
    Muppet, Ateeb.

    Its sad Nasri is injured. Hope the others step up.

  38. With reference to the earlier post about hoping we don’t repeat the Everton performance.
    I watched Everton/Man C last night and the way they took city apart should surely put our game into perspective for people.
    Everton are playing some superb stuff at the moment. Whilst we could have won a draw was not the disaster some would have us believe, nor indicative of a weak display .

  39. Poor Patrick Barclay. he probably wouldn’t work again in football after this article:

  40. I agree with Steww. Everton drew 3-3 with Chelsea, and that was at the beginning of their good run I think.

  41. Thanks Ole. What a great read. The Manchester United fans have pointed the finger of blame at the Glazer brothers, but surely Ferguson must be responsible in part for not balancing the books.

  42. Apparently Nasri and Ramsey confirmed out. Eastmond in the line up….

  43. Fabregas,Eastmond,Diaby
    in the midfield.

  44. I’m well, Ateeb. How’s life on the frontier?

    Yes Duke, Wngland were poor in this match as they have been, in truth, for most of the series.

    Collingwood is the only proper batsman we have. He continues to surprise me. He saves matches not wins them and that is a forgotten art. So called match winners like Pieterson are just dilletantes. They flatter to deceive. We could easily have lost the series 3-1. It feels like we lost the series anyway.

    Soft. By the way, I agree that Ponting was the player of the decade. If we had his toughness in the side we would be so much better.

  45. Eastmond? I didn’t see that coming! Tough match, but we’ve seen how good he can be in that DM role.

  46. Eastmond will hopefully give us balance. Fingers crossed for his premiership debut.

  47. bob,

    Maybe we have too many non english in our england team!! or would that mean we would be even worse.

  48. agree we could have lost 3-1. but to be 1-0 up with one test to play in south africa is no mean feat.

  49. I can’t really make it out, Duke. Too much crap cricket and not enough actual cricket. Pieterson has played one match for his county in three years. Can’t be right.

  50. youth project under real scrutiny today.

    good luck mr eastmond, the real fans want you to suceed today..i sense some anti-gooners will hope you score an og so they can pipe up.

  51. Thanks for another great post, I like coming back to read your blog and your twitter updates.I have an informative site on HPV warts, it holds lots of information and pictures of warts so if you know of anyone in need of the info please pass the details of my site onto them

  52. Pieterson only plays for himself.

  53. Now any links?

  54. Fucking hell! How was that not pen?

  55. add that to the list.

  56. And red card. Or am I missing something?

  57. Mark Bright dont arff waffle on.

  58. Maria have you not got sopcast yet???

  59. Sorry, Mr. Warts. I think you must be looking for a man utd blog.

  60. Yo yo whats up partners?

    Eastmond will do well today and you know this, he may be young but he’s got spunk and I like spunk dogs. The mans i’m worried about is Traore for obvious reasons


    1-0 to the Arsenal!

  62. 1-0 to the Arsenal!

    Good work between Fab and Edu

  63. Another penalty not given.

    And the Bolton players are such scumbags.

  64. Another clear penalty not given…

  65. new manager same old dirty bolton.

  66. The commentary in the US is shocking. They’ve said both times that Bolton clearly got the ball.

  67. They’re going to injure someone at this rate.

  68. OOU,

    Like we need the oppositions help in that department!!!

  69. Haha, yeah!

  70. Oof, Fab wasn’t expecting that one. Bummer.

  71. I’ll tell you what though. Cesc and Arshavin saved Rosicky from getting sent off. The ref had his red card out before they got in his face. Gave him thinking time.

    Bolton really are despicable. Their fans are disgusting as well.

  72. I was wondering why do I still hate even post fat sam.But here they are with a double headed ready to remind me!!!

    Also is it me or is this guy on ArsenalOnline the most depressed troll ever to make it one the Arsenal site.

  73. what happened with rosicky? i didnt see.

    Bolton are revolting.

  74. Well done Mark Bright, for drawing attention to those northern scumbags song. Same old Arsenal always cheating………oh god…….irony is obviously beyond them

  75. Hope Bolton get relegated. Dirty bastards

  76. Did no one see that tosser pick Cesc up by the hair? the wankers commentating didn’t. or chose to overlook it.

  77. nasirjonesnasri

    I agree with Ted Harwood. The FSC commentary has been absolutely ridiculous. I had to mute it after they kept going on about diving. The c*nts.

  78. they’re gonna run out of gas by the 60th min..whenever we’ve had the ball we’ve looked dangerous..3-0 easily

  79. What the hell was that thug trying to do to Cesc after the second penalty shout?

  80. nasirjonesnasri

    That wasn’t even the worst bit, steww. It looked like he was pushing his shin into the side of Fab’s head, too.

  81. Yeah Steww, first he deliberately put all his weight on Cesc’s throat, then he tried to pick up by the hair.

  82. Oneofus – kneeling on his neck then dragging him up by his hair. 100% sums up the Bolton approach to this game. TR7 had enough of it hadn’t he?

  83. i did steww….and i couldnt name the player that did it because he is a talentless nobody. Thug.

  84. That’s it. And they do this stuff with absolute impunity – if we try and stick up for ourselves we risk getting sent off.

  85. nasirjonesnasri


    Apparently, Klasnic bumped Diaby so Rosicky bumped Klasnic.

    That c*nt Robinson should have been off in the 43rd, too. Dirty bastard.

  86. I’ve never really understood how television commentators can watch a replay mutiple times and still get it wrong when it’s plain as day. The only thing I can think of is that they are afraid to admit that they missed something the first time. For me, though, their failure to admit it is far worse than missing it in the first place (when it’s at full speed).

  87. SomeRandomGunner

    Would not that second penalty thing be complained as attempt to murder outside the football pitch ?

  88. They’re kicking lumps out of Cesc. Those dirty bastards. Again Traore is having a shit game. Please Arsene, play Sylvestre.

  89. SomeRandomGunner

    Yeah Traore is tilted towards right always his side very open. Not sure whether it is his fault or team’s fault

  90. How many times are the commentators going to remind the viewing public about Gallas’ reaction at Birmingham?

  91. Nah, he’s just making bad decisions. He looks a bit unsettled. I think he’s low on confidence.

  92. Arshavin is offering no cover whatsoever for Traore who’s having a mare.

  93. Haven’t settled down just yet.

  94. V poor start by us to the 2nd half

  95. SomeRandomGunner

    Yes end to traore’s mare

  96. Traore just stood still during that one-two. Went right past him. I think he’s feeling a bit unsure; hope he can pick himself up here a little bit.

  97. Traore is lost out there today. He’s running around aimlessly.

  98. But I agree with you, OG. Arshavin’s not helping that much.

  99. SomeRandomGunner

    Lets hope clichy is better

  100. Eastmond and Traore has to be subbed NOW.

  101. Atrocious start to the 2nd half. We keep giving the ball away all over the pitch.

  102. SomeRandomGunner

    Eastmond is just too adventerous for a DM

  103. Whole team need to up tempo & start winning some 50/50s

  104. We’re shaky.

  105. SomeRandomGunner

    Looks like fabregas is staying back not to get injured . Diaby in most advanced position

  106. “Eastmond and Traore has to be subbed NOW.”

    That’s not our style. It would be far better for their careers and the club in the future if we give them a chance to steady the ship here, play through this shaky start to the second half.

    Damn that was close from Taylor.

  107. This could be the worst footie game since the Euro 2000 Sweden-Turkey game. God I loathe antifootball. Anybody up for grabbing a couple of uzi and ending those Boltonfuckers misery?

  108. SomeRandomGunner

    where is our midfield ………………………….

  109. Eastmond has been alright for his first game. He’s used to playing football at our academy. He’s out there with a team playing rugby with their feet.

  110. One thing about Traore: he can cross pretty decently.

  111. SomeRandomGunner

    fk whoooooo

  112. SomeRandomGunner

    thought cesc was injured

  113. I’m excited to see what Cesc and Merida can do together on the pitch.

  114. Look how much better Traore looks now that he’s getting forward. He needs to do more of that.

  115. Gainsbourg: agreed. His quickness and crossing are his best assets.

  116. It took us a while to start getting in on them but now we look the more likely to score.

  117. SomeRandomGunner

    our midfield/ attack is too slow in tracking back

  118. Thank heavens Taylor is shit.

  119. To Traore’s credit, he’s getting poor cover from his midfielder.

  120. Clichy for ROSICKY?

  121. SomeRandomGunner

    clichy on for rosicky is he going to play forward ?

  122. Is Armand moving up to the attack? I’m lost.

  123. Merida has looked good so far.

  124. SomeRandomGunner

    Go for the goal pleaseeeeeee

  125. SomeRandomGunner


  126. Armand stays, Clichy moves forward.

  127. SomeRandomGunner



  129. Good goal Merida.

  130. hahaha merieda!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Love it

  131. oh. lovely.

  132. come the f*ck on

  133. Oh my…………….

  134. SomeRandomGunner

    A great deal was talked about a big DM we do not have a DM at all now..

  135. likely traore will move forward

  136. Much Improved. Great goal!

  137. no he wasn’t offside mr fukin commontater.

  138. I think I just woke up my roommates.

  139. Yes! I’d love to see JET for a few minutes now.

  140. Merida done v well in the forward midfield position

  141. hear the disapointment in the commontaters again!! fukin love it.

  142. SomeRandomGunner

    Clichy is helping Traore well

  143. was the goal offside?

  144. Vela coming on for Eduardo

  145. SomeRandomGunner

    velaaaaaaaaaaaaa no JET

  146. That was scary from Traore there.

  147. well done Eduardo. Worked so hard and assist for both goals?

  148. look at all the injuries we got
    it dont matter coz we will still be on top
    all the so called experts will still right us off
    but we dont care coz they can all fu*k right off.

  149. In our 4-3-3 we need a DM that can cover for the fullbacks and defenders. I’d like it Arsene got someone to deputize for Song.

  150. Taylor is absolute shit.

  151. SomeRandomGunner

    In our 4-3-3 we need a DM that can cover for the fullbacks and defenders. I’d like it Arsene got someone to deputize for Song.

    I think this point is over emphasized but if all 3 mid fielders are sharing the responsibility

  152. I hope this crap team gets relegated. Bolton are the worse team in the league.

  153. who did merida replace

  154. SomeRandomGunner

    Score it fkers should foul us there

  155. SomeRandomGunner

    * should not foul

  156. Eastmond

  157. Eastmond.

  158. Good win. Bit sticky for the 1st 15 min of the 2nd half. 2 great goal!

  159. bolton hull & blackburn for relegation wont be bad at all

  160. Great result! Beat Bolton at home and we go top of the league on Wednesday!!!

  161. Still after Traore 69 I see.


  162. SomeRandomGunner

    Eduardo , rosicky, cesc,arshavin combination has been magical. This is one of the best games this season

  163. OG,

    Is that related to how many goals we score?

  164. That was a cracking win against a motivated team. So much for new manager syndrome.

  165. those poor fecks on le moan

    they have a dreadful day of err…. nothing to moan about tommorow.

  166. big positives to take. It realy is happening this time.

  167. Excellent result btw. With Song we were able to keep a clean sheet and dominate the middle of the park.

    Big Al also had a good game very calm under pressure.

  168. ole, that will be decided by goal diff, or goals for

  169. Good team performance. Bring on Wednesday! Go top and we can really put some pressure on.

  170. yes it is, the yoof project had fab, merida, diaby, vela, clichy, and traore all representing at FT.

  171. SRG, when we play with three play makers, like we did today, the likes of Cesc and Diaby aren’t allowed the freedom they get when they play alongside Song. If we can get someone like Coquelin, a DM first and foremost, to cover for Song I’d be happy.

  172. Bolton: 13 fouls, 1 yellow card.

  173. We delivered….

    So proud of the boys

  174. SomeRandomGunner


    I still think they have to do their bit , DM is not an one man thing

  175. Maria, you can’t deny he had a bad game. I’m not going after him either. I just think that we’d be better off playing with Sylvestre against teams like these. It’s not like Traore was defending against Ashley Young, so I don’t see why it is necessary to sacrifice defensive quality for speed.

  176. some random gunner
    touchwood but how many times have they played together

  177. clichydoubledeuce

    welcome back, gael. looking sharp as ever: that header on the sideline to control the ball was pure class.

  178. SRG, I know they have to their bit but with Song on the pitch it allows the other two more freedom to create. Maybe Eastmond or Coquelin can be taught to be that stopper type DM like Song.

    I hope we resign Merida.

  179. the refereeing was ridiculous today. why the hell are they allowed to get away with roughing up our players?

    I’m so incredibly proud of everyone on the pitch today. They were all outstanding and really dug in…no amount of Bolton’s dirty fouling stopped them and they remained composed to earn the well-deserved points.

    I hope the people going to watch the match on Wednesday, give Bolton a thorough shaking.

  180. great performance by the lads against a side which quite clearly had other intentions than just playing football……the first goal was an absolute beauty which only this club is capable of coming up with..second was no less either..bring on bolton II !!

  181. Our average height must have been 5’8″, which meant, according to the pundits, that there was no way we should have beaten Bolton.

  182. I don’t wish to to add unecessary repetition(I am going to though) but the commentary on Fox was, just as others said, biased and and awful. My American wife, who understands little about football, pointed out to me that one of the biased idiots referrred to Bolton players as “our…..”
    For me the worst part was when one ‘commentator’ shouted ‘Goal” at the begining when one Bolton player was clearly offside by 15 yards and another by 10 yards!
    Why would they want to talk up, and imply respect for, a team who frankly belongs in the relegation zone and to take the drop? Their style of play is crude, ugly and unattractive, especially when what is on show from Arsenal is completely at another level. Bolton really look like something from the Stone Age.
    I though that we played well against a purely physical bunch of thugs and had two decent penalty claims turned down. And it was a wonder that we did not pick up injuries against this mob.

  183. While some may prefer the 30 odd Mikeal over Armand ‘the fututre’ Traore. Seems Arsene thinks otherwise though…..

    Anyhoo I do wonder why Eastmond has been given more chances that Coquelin whom I have been much more impressed with.

  184. Taylor’s and Robinson’s roughing up of Fabregas was very cynical. You don’t see that in most leagues. Not in the top leagues anyway. If Bolton get relegated that rids the league of this poor sportsmanship. Good riddance if they do.

  185. First class performance. Never doubted that we would win, a real fighting display. We never stopped playing football. For the record, Almunia was top rate.

    Bolton are a disgrace.

    We are The Arsenal.

  186. Eastmond’s getting chances over Coquelin because Wenger thinks otherwise.

  187. I agree with you Bob, Cesc and Arshavin really saved Rosicky. I was surprised how the ref didn’t show a red, given that he had it out first in his hand.

    As for Arshavin, he gives away the ball at least three times more than Diaby. He’s really struggling to find form, past few weeks. Arshavin can’t seem to keep the ball, and his one touch passes usually don’t find the intended target.

  188. owen coyle wants cesc on loan

  189. MDG, I watched the same broadcast so I feel your pain. The color guy, don’t know his name, went back and forth on whether both penalties were legitimate. Every time, though, he gave Bolton the benefit of the doubt. He even joined in on the Bolton fans singing same old Arsenal always cheating.

  190. ateeb thats not arsha’s position

  191. We missed Denilson today a bit. His calmness and ability to make simple passes, is too under rated. He keeps the midfield ticking. It was a bit too much to ask Eastmond to perform at the same level, but given his experience he did well. As for traore, didn’t understand why he seemed to be hanging out more in the middle than our left side, when the ball broke.

  192. It was surprising, Ateeb. Very unusual for refs to show some natural justice so it couldn’t be that, could it?

    It does show that working the referee can bring dividends.

    A shame and disgrace really. Not that I believe that he should have been sent off but I would prefer it if refs couldn’t be so easily influenced.

    That’s if they can actually make a sensible decision in the first place of course.

  193. …………………..ARSENE KNOWS……………………..

  194. Blimey just read back through – what a lot of wobbling going on. We were away from home, Bolton gave it a good go at the start of the half.
    The result was never in doubt.

  195. Nasri out for 3 weeks.
    Ramsey out for 3 weeks too.

    Theo/Denilson back for mid-week or next week.

    Nikki back in 10 days.

  196. with chelsea scoring 7, who is leading in d goal scored region?

  197. This is bordering on CRAZY!!!!!!!

  198. abc, stop being AA’s apple polisher.

  199. SomeRandomGunner

    What Nasri, Ramsey out for 3 weeks ??
    Sadness. Ivan must appoint some one full time to find out why our players get injured so much

  200. Our extra class told over the 90 minutes.

    Bolton are horrible in every way. Right up there with Hull, Blackburn, Stoke, the list goes on & on.

    Plus, the ref had a mare & gave them licence to rough us up when they felt like it.

    I thought Eastmond did OK but Merida improved us in the last 30 (we must sign him long term) , whilst Diaby was fine at DM.

    I`d like to defend Traore a little. Whilst he had another game to forget he got absolutely no help until Clichy came on.

    Hopefully we can go on & win the home `leg` on Wednesday.

  201. The ref was probably making it up for his decision not to award the penalty for us. It would have been too harsh to give Rosicky the marching orders though, for the game should have been stopped when Diaby was being kicked around.

    Bolton however, did have many chances to pull level, I hope the next game we can keep a tighter defense.

    What happened to Nasri? I don’t think we’ll ever have a full fit squad. Just having 3 first team regulars out should be counted as a blessing.

  202. Bolton were well and truly beaten and what a well deserved result. They can try and kick us but they wont knock us down. The cream always rises to the top. Bring on Bolton part 2. Strength in depth, no goalscorer,no experience, too short, soft touch …all myths dispelled. Bolton and the press have had it well and truly stuck up them.

  203. james i am just trying to say that to judge a player ( and that too as aged as arsha who has played his full life as either right wing or behind the striker ) we should play him in his natural position.

  204. Like that famous left winger Thierry Henry you mean? .abc
    Or the centre back manu Petit.
    Anyway, don’t answer it .abc is my advice – it’s a silly little troll trying to get a reaction.

  205. clichydoubledeuce

    @ ateeb 6:36 pm


  206. .abc – not you of course, I mean the thing you answered.

  207. A few observations from today’s game.

    1. Tremendous spirit from the boys. Having Gallas and Vermaelen at the back creates confidence throughout the team, and we battled hard throughout the game. Psychologically, I think we’ve pretty much won the return game at the Emirates.

    2. Mark Bright has to be the worst pundit on TV. How he could say that Zat Knight got the ball when he tripped Cesc in the penalty area AFTER he saw the replay in slow motion is beyond belief. Add to that the insinuation that Cesc might have dived on the first penalty appeal. Cesc had two clear penalties denied. Finally, after Taylor had shoved Cesc’s face in the ground and grabbed his hair, Bright and his co-idiot (although not as bad as Bright) Ian Darke basically dismissed it as handbags. SHocking to listen to, although I should be immune to it now.

    3. Eastmond was very tidy and stepped up a level in a tough match without any problem.

    4. Eduardo is looking sharper. Set two up and was always challenging in the box when the ball was fired in.

    5. Almunia was rock solid.

    6. Arsene again made the right decision when bringing Clichy on. By putting him in front and not behind Traore he strengthened the left side without destroying Traore’s confidence.

    7. Bright who said that Cesc was ‘just below world-class’ and at the end of the game said he was a genius. So what is the next level up from genius he needs to get to in order to be world-class? Cesc was phenomenal, and might just be the difference between Merida staying and going.

  208. no steww im not henry was young when his position was changed by wenger and in case of manu he was with wenger from monaco days

    all im saying is it not too much to ask from a 29 year old arsha to change his position suddenly due to injury crisis and play their day in day out and that too with an injured foot and then to fulfill rvps boot

  209. Cameroon are a goal down

  210. “Why would they want to talk up, and imply respect for, a team who frankly belongs in the relegation zone and to take the drop? Their style of play is crude, ugly and unattractive, especially when what is on show from Arsenal is completely at another level. Bolton really look like something from the Stone Age.”

    Unfortunately MDGunner, in some English quarters the way Bolton plays is considered to be “Manly” and “English” and until this old mentality is wiped out of the English game, it is not going to be good for English football in the international arena.

    There are very good English players currently, mostly in the top teams but the majority of the lower teams have the sympathy and the green light to substitute their lake of technical ability with physical aggression and the cover-up name for that is the famous “Grit”.

    Our English players will show England how football should be played. We have to be patient. I think the likes of Gibbs, Estmond, Randall, Wilshere are great examples that English players can be technically good if they were to taught from young age…and stop wasting so much time benching iron and more time on the ball…It’s called football anyways, not “Gritball”


    I’m so proud as I said earlier because we gave as much as we got, without losing our objective which is to win the 3 points.

  211. a lil bit too late im steww but still i would like to answer anything unless in darius’s word other person is willing to get a chair,sit down and discuss

  212. cameroon down 1 nnil

  213. That handbags comment is what I find so cynical about the English pundits. If a foreigner does the same thing Taylor did to Cesc, he’s villified and all sorts of insinuations follow.

  214. Lagooner – all good points you make there. Although as bad as Mark bright is, check out Garth Crooks – even worse , that’s just what we have to put up with i’m afraid. They are both an embarrassment to their ‘profession’.

  215. I thought Eastmond did OK. It wasn’t exactly an ideal match for a 19 year-old to make his first start, but he made some neat interceptions and looked capable, and physically quite tough.

    Bolton clearly got a bollocking from Coyle and came at us like crazy at the start of the second half, closing down and forcing a few mistakes. Eastmond suffered a bit at this point.

    The way I see it, if we start him at home to Bolton on Wednesday we’ll see an even better performance.

    As for Traore, I think OG had it right; he wasn’t getting much cover at all. He was pretty helpless in a few 2 on 1 situations, and his head seemed to drop around the time that Bolton were really pushing us.

    I remember Clichy was getting a hard time from some fans at the start of the season. People don’t realise that it can be a tough job in that position at times; we do a lot of our attacking down the right, and when the ball breaks, our left-back gets put in some precarious situations.

    So I think his Clichy’s early season efforts have been thrown into sympathetic relief a little recently (if that’s the right way to put it). And I’m glad Traore stayed on – I always like to see youngsters come through tough games. He’ll have learned a great deal against a side with their tails up.

  216. .abc, before being switched to play centrally many of his supporters were complaining that he was not at his best because he was being played out of position on the left. I remember the rejoicing when he was moved to his ‘natural’ position in the centre. If you listen to Arshavin’s interviews on ATVO he can play in any of the positions in a front 3. If he is struggling at the moment, perhaps that has more to do with the injury he has been carrying, which is admirable given that he has done so given our current shortage of players.

  217. Will we continue to see the usual fart about Almunia?
    Not perfect, nobody is, but he is getting better and better as exemplified today. Rock solid.
    Not a champagne performance but we took our chances. Another 3 pts in the bag.

  218. Come on Zambia……

    G4E, I think that Bolton and Blackburn are the only two teams who actively employ a criminal style of football. Even Birmingham and Stoke play proper football. I think Fat Sam’s influence on English football is to blame for all this. I don’t remember the league being so violent until Fat Sam came along.

  219. Matty Boy

    Luckily we get very little exposure to Garth Crooks now I’m in the States, but you point is very well taken.

  220. almunia was rock solid today..came out for all crosses where he was expected to…held to some really pacy groound shots..give the guy a break!!

  221. If Cameroon are three and out it will be a good thing for Arsenal but I’ll feel bad for Song.

    I can’t understand why Cameroon play him at the back when he’s one if the best DMs in the world. At the same time, they have Geremi in midfield…

    At least if Cameroon do qualify, Song won’t be as exhausted as he would be by playing DM all tournament.

  222. if song comes back , it would dilute the impact of these injuries a little..we can have fab , diaby and song in the middle with the usual three upfront..that’s as strong as any line-up we can come up with….if cameroon lose this , they’re definitely out..these 45 minutes are significant for us

  223. passenal lets not talk about the people who wil never be happy and continue their existentialistic appoach about arsenal forever. but please tell me about a match where arshavin played as a striker ( except in last months of course)

  224. what a game ..

    what a team ..

    what a style ..

  225. final word from me on the game. Can you imagine how Rooney would have handled being denied two clear penalties and having his head shoved in the ground?

    Arsene might have made a mistake in appointing Gallas as captain (as evidenced in his strop at Rosicky where he stood still and complained for a good 5 seconds when our attack broke down) but what a wise move to turn the captaincy over to Cesc when some were calling for it to go to Toure.

  226. ’bout 30 min left..come on zambia!!

  227. Well, I sure hope you all enjoyed the game. I had a bloody power cut just after Cesc’s goal in my house. Not best please.

    Great win in the end, a win on Wednesday and …say we are toppa da league say we are toppa da league

  228. Well, we’ve won someone over. Harris was very much with the conventional wisdom most of the season.

  229. Good win today. Solid performance.

    Cesc Interview

    Reporter: Do you believe you can go all the way this year, you are only 3 points behind?

    Cesc: Well, there are many teams who will say they can go all the way and win the league. But nobody wants to win it more than us, thats for sure!

    Classy player, classy man.

  230. crap!!! what a horrid goal to concede!!

  231. clichydoubledeuce


  232. classy indeed, abishkar.

    thanks for the post.

  233. Do you guys think that Camerron had a goal wrongly disallowed earlier? Well, Eto’o scores, 2-1 to Cameroon. Unbelievable howler from the keeper in the first Cameroon goal.

  234. Great team performance today.

    At half time here in SA, barry gailey and his co-morons were saying how notlob were “working” on upsetting Arsenal.

    Personally, I thought notlob were trying, but were failing dismally and getting more upset and frustrated than we were by quite a margin.

    Did anyone else notice the bit after where that retard zat knight had a go at Carlos Vela?

    It was only a glimpse, and it wasn’t shown again, but it looked like knight gave the ref a petulant shove after dowd gave him a lecture?

    If so, surely that should have been an immediate straight red?

  235. Damned ! Sorry for Alex Song but i really wished they get eliminated and he can come back given all our injuries !….

  236. Kameni concedes a penalty. A very very stupid penalty, and it’s 2-2.

  237. 2-2

  238. Cool and classy finish from the spot by Katongo.

  239. Not a good picture of African goal keepers!

  240. Traore gets more protection from Eduardo than Arshavin..

    Nice to see Dudu middling it and showing what a threat he is..


  242. 3-2 for Cameroon, nice header by the substitute Idrissou.

  243. Djouru, RVP, Walcott, Ramsay, Denilson, Bentdner, Nasri, Gibbs, all unfit, Ebuoe, Song, at ACN thats TEN PLAYERSS OUT AT THIS MOMENT

  244. SOLG, Wilshere and Senderos out as well, so that’s twelve in total.

  245. ffs 3-2

  246. and Campbell unfit as well.

  247. Group D
    Gabon 2 1 1 0 1- 0 4
    Cameroon 2 1 0 1 3- 3 3
    Tunisia 2 0 2 0 1- 1 2
    Zambia 2 0 1 1 3- 4 1

    21.1. GAB-ZAM
    21.1. CMR-TUN

    Cameroon not there yet, Tunisia may yet put them out of the tournament.

  248. The thuggery was unbelievable. Today’s result sends out a message that all that Alan Hansen’s “Get in their faces” bullshit does not work. Fabregas was targeted throughout the game ,Zat Knight grabbed Vela from the collar bully style but luckily our players did not react and continued playing their game. This team has shown a lot of maturity to stand up to the thugs and the thugs did like what’s been dished out back to them.

  249. correction ” the thugs did not like what’s been dished out back to them”

  250. Good result. As mentioned earlier, we have lots of players out, but we have proved that we have enough to go up to Bolton, who are a physical side and come away with a win. Of course, the hacks would have been sharpening their pencils and calling us lightweight it we had drawn, or worst still, lost.

    Still, we appear to be getting through this period despite the absence of 7 or 8 regular first team players (VP, Bendtner, Denilson, Walcott, Clichy, Song, Ramsey and Gibbs). Do Chelsea or Manchester United have 7 to 8 first team players missing ? I know Chelsea have 4 to the ACN, but Manchester United ? We were told on MOTD last night that Chelsea’s slaughter of Sunderland was evidence of their big squad. What then of our achievement of still being in race ? We were called lightweight last week by monsieur Hansan. Some things never change.

    If the players coming in like Merida, Traore can continue to hold the fort, we stand an absolutely great chance of winning the premiership.

  251. Well, well, well. Three more games and all will be in place.

  252. chelsea are leaking goals…

  253. Just back from the Reebok. Super pub. Brilliant result. Thanks Arsene and the boys.

  254. Muppet- You can add Nasri to the injury list he will be out for 3 weeks.
    I’ve watched the Chelsea sunderland highlights abd I wasn’t really concerned with the score line Wigan who Leaked 9 against the Spuds actually defended better than Sunderland that was the worst defending I have seen so far this season They played Lorik Cana as a centre back and it was chocking to watch. So let them get carried away with the score line. My only concern is we have a tough run of games coming up Stoke, Villa, Liverpool, Manure,Chelsea, Porto and we need some luck with injuries.

  255. 1 loose cannon,

    Yes. Of couse, Nasri is another addition.

  256. Do we really need any signings???

  257. I find it utterly breathtaking how we are playing and where we are right now given the appalling luck with injuries.
    This squad is just wonderful. Anyone slagging Traore and Eastmond today needs a reality check. Look at the cauldron of violence and hate in which they were playing. Young men very far down the squad pecking order facing some of the most powerful and violent men ever to disgrace a football pitch and they kept cool, played their football and played for the winning team.
    Merida, who of course is now a hero, got slated at West Ham. Fickle, people, fickle.

  258. Great result today. If we can win the next two league games it will set us up perfectly for the games with the other two title chasers.

    Almunia was pretty much perfect today despite getting roughed up a bit, excellent showing. Traore had a poor one though, I think Clichy will play Wednesday, then rest up in the cup before coming back in for the Villa game. A clean sheet away is a very positive thing though.

    I thought Arshavin looked sharper than the last few games, working into form for when the pressure is on – a big game player.

    Same again Wednesday and we are top of the league. If we get through the next 6 league games there we won’t get shifted.

  259. That’s a great question DukeGoonem. I was half thinking that the half grin on Wenger’s face when he was asked about a striker, could have been very revealing. He was saying, did you see that glorious flick by Eduardo to set up Fabregas for the 1st goal. He was saying… name me any striker in europe who is available now, who would have provided that pass ?

    Then he was saying, did you see the class touch and finish by Merida ? Did you see the versatility of Clichy ? Who could be deployed on the left wing ? And did you know that I have Bendtner, Gibbs and Walcott to come back from injury ?

    I don’t think so DukeGoonem. Maybe the up and coming fixtures will provide a different answer, but right now, no.

  260. I’m looking forward to see Coquelin Jay Thomas they were on the bench and that is an indication from Wenger that he will not be spending.

  261. Yogi – is the moderation a random feature? No foul or abusive, no links, no mention of sp$$s?

  262. Great result today. If we can win the next two league games it will set us up perfectly for the games with the other two title chasers.

    Almunia was pretty much perfect today despite getting roughed up a bit, excellent showing. Traore had a poor one though, I think Clichy will play Wednesday, then rest up in the cup before coming back in for the Villa game. A clean sheet away is a very positive thing though.

    I thought Arshavin looked sharper than the last few games, working into form for when the pressure is on – a big game player.

    Same again Wednesday and we are top of the league. If we get through the next 6 league games there we won’t get shifted.

  263. Maria,

    I think eastmond has been preferred to Coquelin because he’s older. Arsene always gives the older player a chance ahead of the younger.

    That’s logical too, since if you get to a certain age without getting your chance it could stunt your career.

  264. Like Wenger said, it takes time for a player to come to Arsenal and learn to play the Arsenal way so bringing in a Dzeko or whichever top striker there is available right now might not produce the instant hit some gooners are calling for. At the begining of the season i thought we might need a dm but not now, that has well and truly been nipped in the budd. If Wenger gets a striker im sure he would have to be able to play anywhere in a front three and not just in the middle like Dzeko.

  265. Eastmond is much bigger, better in the air.

  266. The people in Spain are saying Henry is on his way back. He can’t get the games, Pedro looks awesome.

    If we could bring Henry back for the title run-in it would be superb. With Arshavin, Fabs, Eduardo playing off him we would have depth and options.

    If Eduardo gets injured we have no strikers fit. Arshavin can do a job, but you lose something having him there. Plus, who then plays the wings with all our injuries?

  267. But would Henry be ok with walking back into Cesc’s team now?? Would it not cause friction, upset the applecart? Cant see Wenger taking the risk. Would be great to see him back though.

  268. Eastmond is class and Traore didn’t have a bad game. When he was at portsmouth he was playing as a winger and was really impressive he is an attacking minded player and will add more to his game with time. To have him in the team is a blessing, he came in and did help the team and we should be grateful that he did not go on loan. I hope he will still play a part this season.

  269. He left Arsenal, where he was captain, star player, and god to go to Barca where he has been a squad player. It is reality for him now. It may just be a rumour, or too obvious, but it seems hard to imagine that he would let his ego get in the way of winning stuff with Arsenal – never happened before.

  270. Traore was excellent when he came in to the team, he is a brilliant prospect, but he was a liability today with his positioning. Players have bad games, it isn’t condemnation to say so. Clichy is first choice, Traore third, it is logical that the experienced starter gets his place back, especially with the deputy starting to struggle. Similar to Mannone and Almunia.

  271. arsenehollis- Henry will not have the hunger anymore he won everything there is to win in football and he is not going to leave the sun and come to play in horrible conditions against some thugs like we saw today he’s been through it and will not want to do it again. These young players have the hunger and ready for a fight. He will remain a Legend and we should leave it at that.

  272. Loose Canon – you have no way to know that, you just made it up.

    If it happens and Henry returns I will be happy. Like Campbell, I think it would be an excellent signing.

    it is difficult to get players to step in straight away and perform, especially with our style. We are so close to winning, any help that gets us there is good. We can probably do it with what we have, I think so, but injuries have been harsh and now is our chance to get cover.

  273. it’d be nice to see Henry back but he’d have to respect the current structure of the team.

    we can’t speculate on how he might feel. He loves Arsenal and is still, in terms of quality and personality, Arsene’s player to the core.

    I don’t like the idea of having the older players back because this is the new Arsenal. It’s their chance and their time to add to our history, having past players come back takes away from them.

    And in any case, if it hadn’t been for that crazy Italian, RvP would still be here and then would we be speculating on getting any other striker? No, of course not. Even Henry admitted that no one’s as skilled as RvP.

    So as much as I’d love people like Pires or Henry to grace the Emirates, I’d much prefer us to have faith in this team and Arsene.

    The closest Henry should come to Arsenal this year is in Spain, at the CL final 🙂 (*crosses fingers*)

  274. I meant “an Arsene Wenger player to the core”

  275. Arsenhollis-I did not make it up. I’ve work it out I watch la liga and he gets substituted regularly because there isn’t much left in his tank and I don’t think he will fancy coming back to a very tough and demanding league which he left because he thought he did all he can for Arsenal.

  276. .abc, I’m not the one saying Arshavin was ever a striker but he did have a career before he came to Arsenal.

  277. Traore has been getting a fair bit of stick today, as he did from the Everton game. All completely unwarranted, if you ask me. He was expeosed and needed help, which is why when Clichy arrived, we looked a lot more solid.

    Great day, great goals and 3 lovely delicious points… Mmmmmm

  278. I cannot believe that yet again, we have been struck down by more injuries? Unbelievable! How unlucky are we? And yet, we are still there, fighting for the title, FA Cup and Champions league! Brilliant effort from the players and manager.

  279. MikeSA @8.03
    Yes I saw Knight shove the ref quite clearly as the FoxSC camera moved away from the incident. I thought hands on the ref was an immediate red card?
    Incidently I also saw Cesc and the ref having some friendly banter in the second half and the ref gave Cesc a friendly push, so perhaps he should have sent himself off?
    G4E – yes you are right about some of the English support for the physical game, mostly those with a chip on their shoulders ‘up North.’
    My second high point of the day was my old ‘home’ teamColchester packing in 10,000 for the match versus Norwich only to lose 0-5.

  280. Come on, Spike! Traore was at fault for all the goals we conceded today.

  281. I dont think Henry could handle the English food again.

  282. You think Henry has developed a taste for squid, hake, muscles, and paella whilst in Spain?

  283. Mussels.

  284. Well, Polizi, he defintely could have done a lot better on the 1st 3 that Bolton scored, I grant you.

  285. Henry loves Pie, mash and Liquor and has it flown out to him direct from a right proper lefit East End gaff Pie n Mash shoppe.

  286. While on one hand it would be great to see Henry back at Arsenal (where he belongs.) I somehow would prefer if we win it all with this squad. I just don’t think that we need Henry to win it and if we would get him back I think it would detract from the ability of our youngsters. The press would write that we won it BECAUSE of Henry and not that we won it because we have the best squad in the Premier League despite it being filled with youngsters.

  287. I don’t think it’s wrong-headed to say simply that Traore had a poor game today. He’s a much better player than he showed, so people should just keep it in perspective.

    All players have bad days, and today was his day. He didn’t have much cover, but even so he was just not at his best. What he does have is great recovery pace, so he can compensate better than most from mistakes and positioning errors.

  288. For a 3rd choice left back Traoere is very decent indeed. He did a job for us when we were desperate and we should be grateful for that. Clichy’s back, now they will have to find someone else to pick on. Not Long ago it was Almunia Denilson and now poor Traore is getting it.Who is it going to be next. Shut it and leave the man alone.

  289. Lagooner, Traore has a remarkable ability to recover indeed. Traore had some of these positioning errors that you speak of in the game against Everton. However, I am not sure that these were necessarily Traore’s positioning errors or if it was more a lack of support from the midfield on that left side. It did not appear so difficult for Traore when Clichy came into the game at left half and duly received the support.

  290. Spike- I thought the 3rd Bolton goal was Eboue’s fault not Traore

  291. I believe Traore is going to be a great player. He has proved this against Liverpool, Villa and Chelsea. On the other hand Mikael Sylvestre played very well against Hull which is a team that plays similar to Everton and Bolton. So if Sylvestre plays better against this type of team, calling for him to replace Traore in these fixtures, doesn’t mean I don’t rate Traore or think he’s shit.

  292. “The color guy, don’t know his name, went back and forth on whether both penalties were legitimate.

    Well century are you living in?

    Gosh I knew you were AIC like.

  293. Traore is a amazing three choice left-back no premier league team who can claim to have a better 3rd choice left back.

    69 you really are one sly troll.

    How’s next on your hit list?

    Sagna,Eddy, or maybe Eastmond another young player who due to injuries has come in at the deep end……..

    Take you pick now but dn;t be greedy pick on one player at a time.

  294. damn Maria-that’s fierce!

  295. To be fair, could he mean the “colour commentary guy”?

    In American sport, there is often a factual commentator paired with the the youngish, snappy, “color” commentator who is supposed to provide atmosphere, excitement, or context ( or irritation).

    I’m guessing since he spelt it as “color” he is American and might not be referring to his race…

  296. AndyE-that’s pretty certain to be the case. I think Maria might have missed for once.

  297. colour commentator actually refers to the one who provides the analysis

    it’s the play-by-play commentator who is responsible for generating excitement and flow

  298. In soccer we don’t need that distinction, usually both commentators tend to talk bullsh*t.

  299. By halftime I was livid, us being a goal ahead didn’t make me any less livid. We had been denied two penalties, one atleast stonewall if i ever saw one, Fabrigas could have got his head chopped off when that jerkface decided to use his studs first and then his knee, the ref was inept,bolton could have scored atleast 2 goals from an offside position, they were fouling us to no end and he wasnt calling for fouls let alone showing yellows.

    2nd half we started off on the back foot, they also didnt relent on the fouls and the ref wasnt doing anything about it. Despite all that we managed to do our best and won the game while still keeping a clean sheet.


  300. Maria get off my back. I’m not singling out Traore because I think he’s bad. I just think that he is not ready to face teams like Bolton, Everton, Hull etc.. When we play teams that actually attack us, I would love to have him on at left back because he provides a veritable threat with his crossing and speed down the flank.

    By the way, read my comments on Merida. If I was out to talk bad about our youngsters I wouldn’t be asking for Wenger to sign him. Not that I should show you my non-doomer credentials but here they are. I like Denilson, was a big fan of Diaby while most thought he was a lost case and believe that Niklas Bendtner will turn into a fine striker. How about that?

    By the way color commentator is a term used to describe the guy that doesn’t follow the play. While one guy is focued on the game; Diaby takes it left and gives it off to Cesc, for example, the color commentator, usually an ex-player, is the one that adds all the other tid bits to liven up the commentary.

  301. Oh, and suck my nuts Maria.

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