Bendtner Strike Keeps Title Flame Alive

Arsenal 1 – 0 Wolverhampton Wanderers

1 – 0 Bendtner (90)

Henry Sent Off (66)

Nicklas Bendtner struck deep into injury time, ensuring that Arsenal capitalised on Manchester United dropping points and the gap to Chelsea remained at three points. Until that point, it seemed that yesterday would be the moment when the Arsenal dream of winning the Premier League remained just that.

Ahead of the Champions League trip to Barcelona, Wenger shuffled the pack. In came Eboue, Silvestre, Campbell, Rosicky, Eduardo, Denilson and Theo Walcott to the starting line-up, changes to that which kicked-off in midweek. Out went Uncle Tom Cobley and all. Had Bendtner not scored when he did, little doubt that Wenger would have been criticised for too many changes. Perhaps he let go of his key tenet, the next game is the most important, by making the volume of changes to the team. Perhaps not.

The majority of the chances fell to Arsenal. Mick McCarthy after the Barcelona tie observed that the opening twenty minutes had given Arsenal a taste of how everyone else felt when Arsenal played them. Well, the squad didn’t like it and exacted an element of revenge for that. Wolves defended stubbornly and deserve credit for keeping the scores level, helped by the usual dose of profligacy in front of goal by the Arsenal midfield and strikeforce.

Much  expectation was heaped on the shoulders of Theo Walcott following his substitute appearance in midweek and he had an energetic afternoon, a constant outlet for the attack, willingingly running at the Wolves defence. As is expected, not every cross found its target, some through wayward delivery, others the ball hitting a space where it is not unreasonable for Walcott to have expected support to have been arriving. He set Eduardo for perhaps the clearest of earliest chances, the Croat’s strike turned aside.

Eduardo’s touch was in turn sublime and out of sorts, reflecting the lack of regular match action he has seen. His link-up play was excellent, working hard to fashion openings or space for the supporting cast. Having threatened the Wolves goal earlier, he scuffed a later effort wide with his right, hindsight probably shows that letting the ball roll across his body for a shot with his left possibly the better option than the effort fashioned by controlling and shooting with his right.

Sagna provided good width when he got forward, a rare genuine sighting of goal saw him shot with power against the prostrate Wolves ‘keeper when a touch of lift and guile might have broken the deadlock sooner. As it was, his final contribution to the attack proved telling, his measured cross in the last minute thundered into the net by Nicklas Bendtner. The goal was deserved by the team and by the Dane in particular for recent performances have gone unrewarded.

Wolves feel aggrieved with Henry’s dimissal but it is hard to fathom why. Henry came through the back of Rosicky, the Czech crumpled under the challenge deflecting the ball away, leading to the misapprehension that the visitor had actually taken the ball. Was there an element of ‘protectionism’ by the referee? No, I don’t think so; the tackle was reckless in the angle from which it was initiated and the speed with which Rosicky’s legs were taken.

The Arsenal midfielder had been at the centre of a lot of the good attacking play for the hosts. Shortly after receiving treatment for the Henry injury, Rosicky had two presentable opportunities to break the deadlock but throughout the game he had been prompting and passing to pull Wolves defensive shape to bits. He contributed his own defensive duties, heading off the post with Almunia beaten although the visitors header looked to be going just wide. He was not to know that and safety first ensured that the clean sheet was kept.

It was a disjointed Arsenal side which produced the necessary win. I am sure Wenger would have preferred not to use Nasri & Co from the bench with Tuesday fast approaching but needs must. Winning in the later stages has become habit forming, a testament not only to the physical strength of those on the pitch but their mental capacity to grind out results, to not let their heads go down when a disadvantageous outcome seems inevitable.

Three points behind Chelsea is not a bad position for a team widely written off before the season started, to be in. They can win the league if Chelsea and United slip once more. Keeping the pressure up is key to it all; rotating the squad today might have crippled that dream but it did not, no matter how the media might like to portray the performance. At this point in the season, who cares how Arsenal wins. Winning is all that matters.

Now we move to the Champions League. ’til Tomorrow.

Posted on April 4, 2010, in Arsenal, Football, Premier League, Premiership, Soccer and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 146 Comments.

  1. __Arsenal__

  2. Good post YW. Intelligent and incisive as usual, not a great atmosphere today but that was primarily due to Wolves who had come to us to do a job, but how sweet was the eruption when Big Nick popped up at the end. That is why you have to love this team.

  3. Who cares about the performance? 3 points is all that matters and no more injuries!

    Theo was very good again today, yet watching on MotD and in some media quarters, they have been slating him.

    I really should know better, but I read that bitter old c*nt Myles hairy Palmer’s latest piece of jaundiced bile. Wow that old hack has serious issues.

  4. I’m starting to think that the injury that’s had the biggest impact on our season thus far was the one suffered by Bendtner. We really miss his presence up front when he’s not available.

  5. My ol ticker cannot handle many more of these last gasp goals. So pleased when it finally came.

    If we are out of the race then so are Manchester United, so the hacks have no choice but to include us again.

    If we win the league this year then much of the praise will have to go to big Nic for scoring big goals at crucial times.

    One frustration that I felt was the fact that we crossed so many balls in today when that is clearly not our game. It is great to have that option to mix it up but it was food and drink to the Wolves defence especially when we only had one player in the box for many of the crosses. It sounds ridiculous complaining about an action that we eventually scored from but if we are going to cross the ball as much as that then we need players getting into the box.

    If the Chamakh rumours are true (which they do seems to be) then perhaps he can benefit from Sagna and Clichy more often.

  6. Thanks for the write up Yogi. Really really gutsy performance from the boys.
    Although if we win out still I think we need Chelski to slip up twice, since it’s unlikely we can top their massive goal differential.
    But anyway all we have to worry about right now is winning the next game
    Come on you Rip Roaring Reds!!!!!!!!!

  7. On French TV, they showed Rosicky being treated on the side of the pitch. You could quite clearly see he was bleeding from the stud marks despite the pad.
    That means that if he had his legs firmly planted in the turf he would have had a broken leg.
    Talking about broken leg how can the English newspaper transform Aaron Ramsey statement into “Ramsey clears Shawcross” headline.
    Eduardo had a terrible game. yes he was off the pace because of lack of game time, however I do not believe that is the main issue with his game.
    He quite clearly shirks away from 50-50 situation. Also whenever he has his back toward goal, he is trying to get rid of ball. There was situation when nobody was near him he was still passing back to a teammate.

  8. Still can’t hear any singing from the ‘fat lady’. I think she’s given up!!!

    Arsenal all the way

    Nice piece Yogi


  9. I think that Arsene Wenger made a mistake to use Michael Sylvestre as left back instead of Armand Traore.
    Sylvester was so dire at left back that in the second half Arsene Wenger switched Vermeulen to left back.
    The few times Wolves attacked I was frozen in fear that Sylvester was going to mess up his clearance as centre half and costing us the game.

  10. Henry is a thug. Don’t forget he stamped down on Theo’s calf in the first half, leaving his studs in for a couple of seconds. He fully deserved his red.
    I agree about Traore. I like him and his attack is much, much better than Silvestre. Why do we still have Mikel?!

  11. I still think arsenal aint good enough for the epl or cl trophies.The team made heavy weather of beating Wolves. For teams aspiring to be champs,ruthlessness is the hall mark. I am afraid Arsenal has filed in this respect . This ruthlessness has been missing from Arsenal not just this season but but at least five seasons.
    As for the cl,I expect Barca to prevail. They won’t make the same mistake twice.Then it’s back to the drawing board for AW.
    I just hope I am wrong but frankly speaking
    the odds are against Arsenal.

  12. you’re full of it striker.

    Man USA made heavy work of beating Wolves. They only won 1-0 and Wolves missed an open goal. Wolves are not a crap team.

    Plus this was 4 days after an epic European tie and we had to make lots of changes.

  13. Silvestre was MUCH better than Traore would be defensively.

    And he actually played really well. He’s a much better fullback than a centre half

    Wenger didn’t switch him to centre half because he was poor. He switched him because by the end of the game TV was playing pretty much in the attacking third.

  14. striker – no, results count, and today we got the result…

  15. California Gooner

    Mean Lean — when you think of your old ticker, spare a thought for Arsene’s as well. He looked so upset over on the sideline as the clock ticked down. While we are still in it, his team has not made it easy on him!

  16. It has been announced that Chamakh has signed for us. Hopefully he will bring a lot more of ruthlessness in front of goal and a stop to the profligacy.
    I think that with a world class striker (Van Persie) available during most of the season Arsenal would have win more game and with a bigger margin or at least draw less and not needed sime miracle extra time goal scoring exploit.
    To me Eduardo will leave during the summer. Arsene is still judging him on what he could do and not on what he is currently doing. We are at the end of the season and Arsene should be more ruthless in using some players even if they will not benefit the club in thje long term.
    Merida is a case in point as he was not even on the bench. Eastmond was on the bench. Clearly Merida is leaving us in the summer. Despite that he should have been used for the game.
    Also Mexico is ruining Carlos Vela’s Arsenal career. Everytime he has had a chance to stake a claim for a first XI place he got injured or jet lag from a meaningless friendly for Mexico.

  17. Seems some of these pricks watched a different game to me.
    Striker is a real idiot. Wolves went to manure with their weakest possible team and played us with their strongest available.

    If you know fuck all about football please do not post a comment to prove it.

  18. I think striker is more of a manure or chav fan. He certainly is not an Arsenal fan.

  19. Very nice piece Yogi as usual. Any confirmation on the Chamakh signing? As for the game….yes it was very frustrating but what do you expect? Those who played on Wed were tired and the rest who were brought in are not all getting regular games, Edu and Vela especially, and it showed. But as far as NB52 is concerned, man has he proven his worth!! Not just today but also against Hull. Thats 4 extra points right there. Can you imagine RVP and NB52 playing week-in and week-out together? That is a very scary prospect indeed. How about Sagna getting off a decent shot, yes like Yogi said a bit of guile was in order but he is a defender after all. Cannot wait until Tuesday, I really believe we can do it, and trust me so do Barca!!

    Am watching Seattle Sounders V NY Redbulls and would you believe our old friend Freddy Ljungberg is playing. In fact he just picked up a yellow!! I guess some things never change 🙂

  20. I say welcome to ManGoonian at 12:49 am. He has been fighting a an often lonely but spirited battle against some of the scummiest, so-called Arsenal fans in the world, at that haven for the vilest doomers and gloomers, Le Groan. I must say that ManGoonian has scored some success in winning over a minority who have been misled by the their psuedo leaders. I am convinced the two buffoons who alternate blogging duties, often incite and inflame as a surefire ways to generate hits and boost their inflated ego as popular bloggers.
    I know this welcome is almost certain to have you binned, but hopefully you will keep exposing the retards and ingrates who every passing day look more and more foolish as Arsene’s project succeeds despite the odds.

  21. Nasir Jones-Nasri

    Le Moan can go f*ck themselves. Saying Denilson’s back injury was caused due to over training is just hilarious. How can they confirm such a claim? I hope those c*nts suffer a debilitating back injury like Denilson. The f*cking c*nts.

  22. Come on guys.

    We all know Le Grove is visited by only the very best financial analysts, economists, medical professionals, and sports scientists. This is in addition to the huge number of contributors with unsurpassed pedigrees in top-flight football.

  23. and those two at le moan thinks they’re the champions of free thinking amongst the arsenal fans.

    pretty hillarious 😀

  24. watching this team does it not remind you of the 1971 team never giving up last gasp goals, whos to say we cannot emulate them and win our own double.

  25. Great result. You could tell how much Wenger wanted to win. He clearly feels the title isn’t beyond us. I feel it might be but that’s exactly the attitude we need at this time.. Why i do feel that we won’t win the title is our inferior goal difference, which means Chelsea have to slip up twice instead of once as you suggested in the article.

  26. I had a look at Le Grove after the Barca tie, wondering whether they were elated about the result and the manner in which it was achieved. I finally understood clearly the rationale for that site. It represents a group who consider Wenger, in terms of his nationality and football philiosophy, the players he has championed and nurtured and their attirbutes, as the worst thing in Arsenal and nothing else. It has a single issue – to oppose and ridicule Wenger, no matter what happens. There is nothing else. Everything is blamed on Wenger.

    If he does well, he is given grudging, mean and snide acknowledgement, while pointing out every mistake he is alleged to have made. If the team struggles he is openly and viciously attacked.

    Clearly there is a miniscule element within Arsenal which feels it is more important that Wenger fails than ANY team under him succeed.

    The result at Wolves is magnificent. Mental toughness and fitness is now a major strength.

    Chelsea are in control, and this year’s trophy is their’s to lose. They need to falter twice for Arsenal to win; this season anything is possible.

  27. Eduardo’s great miss, if you look at the footage again you see that it came out of quickness of thought his body could not keep up with…, he probably wanted to shoot to the open right corner with his left but it closed fast with couple of defenders so he changes his mind and thought he could tuck it to the near post on the left,was small gap there between the keeper and the post.. he lost his balance.. but it came out of quick thought and vision. another forward would have just blasted it right or high to the to.. a shame.. you always think he is such a good footballer really, but fails to do the job.. he does not trust the power of his shot and that slows his instinctive decision making

  28. Amazing how none of the MOTD pundits, that absolute arrogant and biased bastard Hanson above all, none mentioned Henry’s vicious and deliberate stomping his studs unto Theo’s calf in the first half, for which he should have seen red or at least yellow. The amazing thing is that these people do not get it, to them the fact that Henry might have got a bit of the ball justifies this sort of tackles.
    It could have ended terribly , and that fact alone should simply outlaw these tackles altogether.
    not to mention that it was from behind because R7 was turning.
    You would think that having seen how Barca gets probably 70% of their tackles without any ‘robustness’ but by sheer skill tenacity and collective organization would have taught them something about the cultured game, but no.
    If the forceful slide, fly, or chop tackles were not tolerated the game in England would have changed dramatically , it would faze out that type of gladiator hatchet men from the game and allow the skillful kids to succeed. One could have hope that the Ref’s red card was a sign of clampdown on this practice, but it was alas interpreted as weakness and error in judgment .

  29. Great result
    great “never say die” attitude

    but what i cant understand is before n52 came in, why do we whip so much crosses in when there is nobody to head??
    I dont think playin dudu as the front man is a good idea now because believe it or not, his avantages are limited in that position, he would be more suited out wide because he is intelligent

  30. Dudu aint that bad, neither is Silvestre. Silvestre had a really good game i thought, defensively never put a foot wrong, was strong in the air, and even put a few crosses in for us. Walcott got worse as the game went on, I put that down to tiredness, he could barely kick the ball at the end. He needs to control his enthusiasm throughout the whole 90mins. On another day we would all be yet again singing his name if there was some better finishing. We were really wasteful. He didn’t have a bad game though, he looked to be our best player who everyone kept feeding, why on earth was the commentator slating him from start to finish! All i kept hearing was Theo is hot or cold… now its cold.. now its cold… oohh that was good. These guys need to get some perspective and a life even!

  31. chrisGonna, the commentator was even laughin when he said walcott was cold and he kept on doing it. that was so annoyin, who was the commentator anyway?


  33. *

  34. My commentators were great. Two Chinese guys, I couldn’t understand a word but they sounded gutted with every save and near miss. And boy weren’t there a lot of those? If ever a keeper led a charmed life that was it.
    Disagree 100% about the performance. You lot are letting your nerves get the better of you. It was utterly thrilling entertainment with chance after chance being created. Every trick and playing style was tried and far from a gamble the line up changes were a vindication of the squad. How could they all play again after the effort against Barca? Silly to even wonder if they should.
    No I loved it. Of course I was eating my hands during extra time. Of course I screamed as we missed again, but I got more ebtertainment than a Bolton or Spurs fan gets in a whole season, and the right result.

  35. Also entertainment. Ebtertainment is very rare.

  36. I don’t believe a draw yesterday would have put us out of the title race. I think it is very likely that Chelsea will drop five points before the season is out. The disparity in goal difference would of course make our task more difficult.

  37. We did play well yesterday. Walcott in particular was brilliant. I think he’ll be a substitute on Tuesday; but on current form, who could say he shouldn’t start?

  38. I must have watched a different game. Football brains in short supply I think. I saw Theo Walcotts confidence and efficiency increase in the game ably assisted by the MOTM performance from Thomas Rosicky. At least 75 per cent of the crosses, fell into a dangerous area and we must have had as many shots on goal as Barca against us. A whisker either side of the goal this one could have been a rought.

    Anyway is not putting the opposition team under pressure the way to beat a team that parks the bus and didnt Sagna’s precise cross lead to the winner, he who is often much maligned by one eyed fans as not providing an offensive threat. Similarly Silvestre did not put a foot wrong. And those criticising Eduardo he nearly lost his league FFS. We are not being given a chance by anyone. How wrong they all are.Arsenal all the way COYG!!!

  39. Sagna doesn,t do enough during a game to warrant his inclusion ,can,t dribble his way past the opposition defenders ,can,t shoot ,can,t cross from the wing ,ball watchers to much ,it,s time to give Traore another chance on that flank.

  40. Did you notice at all that it was Sagna who crossed for Bendtner to score yesterday?

  41. I was listening to the game on my iPhone on a train! Seriously got some funny looks when Nik scored and I went nuts all on my own !! Couldn’t give a shit but my face did go slighty more arsenal coloured than normal!

  42. Barca has a squad of 23 players. Ibrahimovic, Iniesta and Toure are injured, and Puyol and Pique are suspended. That leaves 18 players. They’re struggling to even name a full squad for our game.

  43. Samuel

    Traore’s position is on the left. Sagna plays on the right.

  44. Aaditya

    That means a certain Thierry Henry will be considered to start.

  45. Come what may for the remainder of this season, we have had a darned good season. Against all odds, we’re pitting ourselves against the best of Europe, and we’re set for a top 3 finish in the premier league. Any better, and I’ll be over the moon.

  46. Off-topic: George Elokobi (Wolves left back) looks like an unlikely footballer with plenty of excess around the middle. It is amazing to see that he could play abit.


    Caption: Jack Wilshere is hauled away by referee Michael Jones. Bolton and Aston Villa players clashed after the final whistle.

  48. 1 loose cannon

    Luke- I’m not surprised at all. Wilshere is a fighter, its not the first time he likes a scrap. I like that in a player..

  49. Speaking of the wisdom of Mr Wenger; during the clamor during the last transfer window for a new forward to replace the injured RVP, didn’t he say he say NB52 was returning and he saw nothing better out in the market? Didn’t the entire ranks of English punditry scoff and laugh at him as a an old parsimonious fool who was afraid to spend? Didn’t the usual mass of Arsenal blogs go into a wave of childish weeping and wailing because there would be no new toy to boast to their friends?
    Well, hasn’t Nicklas Bendtner more than repaid Wenger’s confidence in his abilities. Someone posted the following elsewhere but it needs repeating:

    1-0 vs Liverpool – smart layoff to Rosicky to cross for Diaby’s winning goal.

    2-0 vs Sunderland – opening goal.

    3-1 vs Stoke – equalising goal against Arsenal’s bogey team; won the penalty which turned out to be the winning goal.

    3-1 vs Burnley – set up Walcott’s winning goal (granted he did miss a few sitters!).

    5-0 vs Porto – scored the all-important first 2 goals, sealed the hattrick at the end with a cooly-taken penalty.

    2-1 vs Hull – set up the opening goal for Arshavin and grabbed a stoppage time winner.

    2-0 vs West Ham – set up the opening goal for Denilson.

    2-2 vs Barcelona – played a measured defence-splitting pass to Walcott to give Arsenal hope; sealed the comeback by winning the header in the buildup to Fabregas’ penalty.

    1-0 vs Wolves – BIG, BIG winner in the 4th minute of stoppage time.

  50. 1 loose cannon

    Aaditya- Toure is not injured but I don’t really care who is out and who is not. Its about how you perform on the night.
    I’ve been watching Barcelona this season and I noticed a weakness in their hard pressing and passing game. They normally come out flying at you throwing everything but in the last 30 minutes of every game they run out of gas and concede lots of goals last night they conceded 1 goal in the last 15 minutes of the game and if it wasn’t for Bilbao’s terrible finishing they could have scored more. They are a very good team and the work rate is unbelievable but the problem is the game is 90+ minutes and they cannot sustain that pressure for very long. If we can weather the storm in the first half and keep it tight. in the last half hour unleash Walcott again and believe me they will be in trouble. At the Emirates they were absolutely knackered in the second half and they did not venture forward as much and that is not because of complacency, they simply run out of legs and Walcott exposed them. There is no team on earth who can pass, press, and tackle for 90 minutes.

    They have conceded 13 goals in the last half hour most of the goals between 70th and 92nd they have also conceded few Goals in the first 5 minute as well. its clear you can either take them by surprise and score or simply weather the storm and hit them hard in the end.
    I guess that will be the plan at the Nou Camp. I don’t think they will repeat what they’ve done at the Emirates. The players know what to expect.

  51. Last Wednesday, Barcelona gave their best performance of the season. There is no reason to suppose they can equal that performance on Tuesday, let alone surpass it. If the leaden-footed Yaya Toure is in defense, our strikers can expect a field day.

  52. To “striker” and his ilk, I would like to quote Mark Twain:

    “It is better to keep your mouth shut and be thought a fool, than to open it and remove all doubt.”

    ’nuff said.

  53. That is indeed the problem PZ. If Wednesday was your best 45 minutes and you didn’t apply the knockout punch then it plays on your mind. To be fair, we are still underdogs going to the Camp Nou, like Ali vs Liston. History is up to us.

  54. NB52 nailed it on the head when he said a football match is won by the team that stays focused over 90minutes. Man Utd were outplayed and outclassed by Bayern in 99 but won the game with goals in the last few minutes of the game, liverpool hauled back a 3-O deficit against Milan to win in a dramatic penalty shoot out, Utd knocked out by a Costinha late goal at OT and Mourinho runs down the touchline. Thierry silences the Bernabeu. Football never follows the script. Reputation means nothing without 100 per cent concentration.

    Barca and Messi will give us the game of our lives. As it stands the balance lies heavily with Barca who have the advantage on away goals. And whoever they play we will have our work cut out to keep Bojan, Messi and Xavi shackled. They will certainly look to score to kill the game off. Which means we will need to score at leas 2 goals against them to progress. Until the final minute we will never give up and give the performance of our life COYG.

  55. It will be interesting to see if the Ibrahimovic injury stories are true or just the usual boll*cks that comes from anyone connected with Barcelona with the exception or King Henry of course.

    The never say die attitude we have shown lately bodes well for what will be a tight game on Tuesday, lets hope we can pull out a performance on par with the games we won against Milan and Madrid in recent years. There is no reason why we can’t go there and get a result regardless of their injuries, they must be looking at ours and thinking the same thing so it’s pretty even on that front.

  56. I am the only one who is waiting to hear of a season ending injury to Drogba?

    Come on injury goddess only unitl the world cup, god knows the Ivory Coast need him!!

  57. Other than Almunia, Vermaelen, Song and Sagna we had no first team players on the pitch. On top of that we beat a team content with parking the bus. How many times have Chelsea and MU pulled out close victories like these only to be heralded as teams that grind out results? The people moaning about yesterday’s victory are not skeptics. They are pessimists who get pleasure from pouring their bile onto Wenger and this team because they just want to be proven right. And while I’m not the type to tell people to fuck off and go support another team, everyone has the right to their opinion regarding Arsenal, the fuckers who are bitching after this hard earned victory should really consider fucking off and getting a new team to support.

  58. What a week.

    That makes it four assists, so far, for Sagna in 29/30 PL games.
    Which equals, his haul from the 07/08 season, his first.
    If he’d scored that chance set up by TW14, he’d better his first season record (in goals & assists) before the season is out. Needs a goal to do that!

    What a team!

  59. Gainsbourg69 – well said

    It seems everyone has an opinion on Arsenal, even the half hearted supporters who have nothing good to say. What is the point? Is it jealousy, is it just a national hatred against our amazing French manager, and largely foreign players? Something is not right. We play the MOST attractive football in the league, we have the highest TV viewings from neutral fans, yet everyone still will go out their way to pour water on anything positive. Just unbelievable, Man Utd are 1 point above us, we have been sitting pretty a few points off top for several weeks now and nobody blinks an eye lid. Man Utd will now crumble without Rooney, IF hes out, Chelsea have a few hard games. I expect a couple draws at MOST.. that means we must win all our games remaining.. thats the only way. Every game is like a cup final now.. starting tuesday

  60. I’m no problem agreeing with the Stringy-Fellow Out Hawking,

    Mick McCarthy’s face (what’s his real name?) was hilarious.

    Worth the wait.

    Many highlights in yesterday’s game.
    Song’s expression after ‘Tough Guy’ Henry’s attempt to get him booked after a free kick award, (he played for a foul, maybe not a dive), was funny, Song was completely unflustered.

    Later on, Henry seemed a little upset with his own card. He should be happy that TV5 only gave him a shove, and Campbell has more self control then he does.

    The number of reports where TR7 is accused of ‘making the most of it’ represent blatant misinformation.

  61. Sagna doesn’t offer nothing!!!! hahahahaa who on earth said that! Sagna is the most SOLID RB I have ever seen, you can’t even count the mistakes hes made at his whole time at Arsenal using the fingers on one hand. Absolute quality player, Eboue is looking good this season, but he isn’t nowhere near Sagna defensively. Eboue is a dribbler by nature and in general he is a very talented versatile footballer. That is something I said last season when he was under fire from all angles.. he has come along nicely, and I enjoy watching Eboue play for Arsenal. He seems to fully respect the shirt now, and he always gives 10000%. He seems to be an influencial lad in the changing room and on the pitch too.

    Eboue will start against Barca, I imagine in front of Sagna, while Theo may have to settle for an impact sub role – he looked very tired in the last 20 mins against Wolves.

    My team prediction:

    – – – – – – — — Almunia
    Sagna – Song/Campbell – Vermaelen – Clichy
    – – – – – Rosicky – Diaby – Nasri – – – – –
    Eboue – – – – Bendtner – – Vela/Eduardo

    I have a feeling Wenger may be tempted to put vela in or Eduardo down the left for this one. I may be wrong, but doing so may keep Alves pinned back slightly – he was their most dangerous player on wednesday, bombing down the right like a steam engine for 70 mins! Nobody could get near him. Good thing Wenger has kept Clichy fresh.

    I would like to see Campbell start, but Wenger may play song at CB and use Nasri Diaby and Rosicky as the central 3, Nasri and Rosicky are as smart as their CM players, hopefully we can get the possession from there.. leaving 2 slots next to Bendtner. I think we will do it, my heart says it, and my brain knows the team has the ability. If we can keep the ball, and use the wings we will cause them problems.

  62. Shots 25 to 5
    Passing 521 to 245
    Passing accuracy 86% to 78%
    They were battered…. Yet the pundits say well played Wolves for such a defensive effort! Who won the game!
    Yet Weds and a scoreline of 2-2 we only hear that Arsenal were battered!?

    League is now down to 15 games. Of these 7 are key. Ars, MU and Ch all play Tott. Ars, MU play MCity and Ch play Liv.
    Tott are desperate for 4th but play Portsmouth in the Wembley treacle on Sun 11th, then Ars at home Weds 14th, then Chel at home Sat 17th, then MU away Sun 24th.
    Top 3 teams in 10 days, and all chasing the league title.

    MU will be strong favourites to win at Blackburn (away), Sunderland (away) and Stoke (home) all with Fergie accolytes. But Tott (home) and MCity (away) are where they can drop points.

    Chelski will be strong favourites to win Bolton (h), Stoke (h) and Wigan (h), but Totts and Liv are both away and they must draw these 2 for Arsenal to have a chance.

    Arsenal will be strong favourites to beat Wigan (a) and Fulham (h). Key is Totts (a), MCity (h) and Blackburn (a). Would not normally put Blackburn as key but it will be a waterlogged turnip patch and no holds barred tackling for Blackburn’s “cup final”.

    Draws to Chelsea vs Totts, and Liv, and a draw for MU against MCity leaves Arsenal champions by 1 point IF THEY win all remaining 5 games. Doable but not easy.

  63. I was asked by some fellow Gunners on their way to the game on Wednesday, what I thought would happen, whether Eboue would hack down Messi (in jest), and I froze.

    After a few moments (I was in awe of the Barca game/tie before it had even begun),
    I managed to mumble,

    “Anything can happen”.


  64. Nasir Jones-Nasri

    It’s funny how that works both ways, jbh. We can’t do anything right. These are the same assholes who wrote Wenger and his team off before a bill was even kicked. Yet, we are in 3rd place 3 points off the top.

    Long live Wenger

  65. Nasir Jones-Nasri

    A ball not bill. A Freudian slip perhaps.

    Just kidding, Bill. ; )

  66. Looking at AW’s team rotations and substitutions over the past 2 games it looks like he will start the following on Tuesday (bear in mind he doesn’t like midfielders and forwards to play 3 full games in 6 days). Also bearing in mind his comments about Walcott yesterday.

    Rosicky, Nasri, Denilson, Abou Diaby, Eboue
    Clichy, Vermaellen, Song, Sagna
    with Walcott for the last 30 or 40 mins.

    Not a bad lineup considering all the injuries. Who else could put in such a lineup with Cesc, RvP, Arshavin and Gallas injured?

    Doesn’t matter who Barca put out, the above team can keep them quiet for 60 or 70 minutes then seek a winner late on.

    Also AW said 10 days ago that RvP was looking sharp and only needed time training with the team and would be ready in 2 or 3 weeks to play. 2 weeks means Tuesday night. Maybe a secret weapon for the last 20 minutes along with Walcott?

  67. RVP will not be ready, Arsene meant that when he did get back to the team he would then need 2-3 weeks training, he only got back last week.

    Remember we also have Ramsey, Gibbs, Djourou all out as well.

    Have to admit though that Walcott is not ready for a starting role. Not due to any lack of ability mind, just that he gives so much he gets tired in the last 20 mins or so. He should be used as an impact sub again as Barca get tired near the end and he will rip them apart.

  68. I don’t think MU are clear favorites against Blackburn. Blackburn are a team that play a 4-5-1 and defend as a unit. Without Rooney MU has no scoring threat. Blackburn will be more than happy to get a draw against them. That tie has 0-0 written all over it.

  69. was looking at Henry’s red card again, mostly because Arsene said it was unlucky and that there was no malicious intent, and I have to admit Arsene knows!! If you watch his tackling foot you will see he keeps his studs facing down and away from Rosicky’s leg. His trailing leg is tucked(as it should be) behind him so as to avoid injuring his opponent with follow thgough. Yes it was a foul, and more than likely a yellow in and of itself, but Henry had made a few rash challenges earlier on and I feel left the ref no choice. As to the stamping on Theo, I watched that again too, have to say not convinced he was meaning to stamp on him at all, in fact he and Theo shook hands right after it, so obviously Theo felt the same.

  70. Gainsbourg69 – I was saying the same thing regards the Blackburn game. MU were awful against the Chavs, deserved to lose. I an actually see Blackburn stealing this at the end if it is 0-0 late on, how awesome would that be?

  71. Yes, his ‘shape’ for the challenge was fine.

    But there was a slight problem, TR7’s calf was in the way of the ball. The cuts were up towards the knee.

    Completely the inverse of Campbell the other week, Gallas the other month.


    Well, he had no chance of getting the ball…

    Just my opinion.
    I’ve never played in a football game where such a challenge, would be left unchallenged.

  72. Camera angles are deceptive because of parrallax.

    Two of the replays are inconclusive, the third from behind Henry shows that he wasn’t late, but misguided IMO.

  73. Lets stay away from the others games for now… every game is a cup final for us, we must win each one as they come. Next up is Barcelona away.. win this game and we have a fair few cup final games left. I believe we can do it, Wenger gambled by rotating a lot against Wolves, the boys pulled through in the end after making a hash of the finishing.

    Againsr Barca we must be clinical, I don’t agree with those that say we won’t have many chances.. Barca are practically forced to attack at the Nou Camp where their fans demand them to push on. There will be plenty of space behind, and a very weak defence it looks. Now it seems as if Iniesta is OUT, Toure is a doubt, Ibrahimovic is OUT, so their squad will be tested now too. Henry looks likely to start, which will be interesting to see how much he wants to knock us out!!

  74. Henry deserved his red, it was a blatant tackle from behind straight through the player, what is there to argue. I couldn’t believe the commentator actually thought it was very harsh.. I wanted to deck him, this is the same guy that was laughing at Walcott for the whole game anyway! There is a lot of Arsenal haters out there

  75. Finsbury – My point was that it was a legitimate tackle but that yes it was mistimed. The difference with this tackle and that of say Shawcross is the important point. Shawcross went in with the intention of getting both ball and man. Not to break his leg but to “get stuck in ” and “let him know he is there”. Henry however tried everything he could to limit any injury caused by his tackle, his studs were down, his back leg tucked in, his tackling foot sliding along the ground not raised. Yes it was late and looked awful at first glance, but it was the proper way too tackle. Well it would have been if he had not arrived too late but that is an honest mistake and is part of the game.

  76. Maria very brave predictions from Danny Alves especially seeing how Barca faded in the last 20 minutes and that Arshavin, Gallas and Fabregas were all playing at probably at 10 percent of their best due to injury. No doubting Barcas ability and there dishing out a football lesson to us. But they have been warned. Shades of Sammy Kuffour punching the ground in 99 I think is on the cards for Alves. Nick Bendner to beat Barca at the death. 3-3. I cant wait.

  77. Irishgray, the tackle from behind is now illegal in the game and if Cesc can get a yellow for a perfectly timed tackle from the side, a tackle from behind which leaves a player’s calf bleeding from stud marks has to be a red.

  78. Passenal – I have stated all along that the red was a fair one, as the tackle from behind is illegal and on that we agree. The point I was making is that it was simply mistimed as opposed to malicious. Yes he had to go and I stated that the ref had no choice. But I was trying to point out his technique was perfect and players such as Shawcross, Taylor and the like should be made to watch and learn, because if Henry had tackled like they do Rosicky’s ankle/leg would most likely have been broken.

  79. Intent or otherwise Henry’s tackle was a bad one. It could only damage the player with the ball.

  80. If you don’t want to run the gauntlet of ref card selection then don’t put that sort of tackle in.

  81. Players can’t have it both ways. You want to play rough…you may get rough decisions.

  82. Th presence or otherwise of malice is completely irrelevant irishgray.

    The presence of danger is all that is important. It was a dangerous tackle.

  83. I not sure the absence of malice is so clear cut. Henry made a challenge that could seriously injure his opponent if mistimed, and he knew there was a high chance he would mistime it. Is that not something like malice?

    I’m also not sure that the perfection of his technique is relevant. A player might volley an opponent’s head very sweetly.

  84. Queen of Suburbia – the presence of malice/intent is relevant. In the case of Shawcross even Aaron Ramsey believes the intent was to take out both man and ball and let Ramsey know he was there. That is the thug mentality that is so prevalent and should be removed from the game. Along with managers such as Pulis, Allardyce, Brown who encourage it. If Henry had gone in with this intent he would have either left his studs showing, followed in with his standing leg, or had his tackling foot off the ground and high. Then Rosicky would have been seriously hurt. That is the difference between a badly timed tackle and a tackle that is intended to take out the player, so yes it is relevant.

  85. I can’t believe that somebody actually still debating or defending the tackle on Rosicky?

    It was a clear sending off, a clear rash tackle that had absolutely nothing to do with the ball, it was an easy decision to make. Maybe the decision is not in line with the majority of “blood and violence loving fans” but it’s the right one, and should always be.

    A good sliding tackle is when you get ALL of the ball and NONE of your opponent, blood loving fans have to start learning that and stop thinking it’s OK to hack a player because you touched the ball first, or you intended to, but missed it.

  86. Poliziano – a great many legitimate challenges can seriously injure an opponent if mistimed but are still crucial to the game. A perfect example is George Boateng yesterday who went to clear with his head just as Tuncay went for an overhead kick. Boateng was stretchered with I believe a fractured cheekbone and concussion, but both the overhead kick and the attempted clearance were legitimate. Look at Barca when they tackle, their technique has been perfected and is just as effective but much less dangerous but they still mistime it sometimes.

  87. If I have the final decision to choose our first eleven on tuesday, i will put my trust on Eduardo to score. Judging his form against Wolves i think he is completely ready now.

  88. Fuck Henry. Vermaelen got a red card for a non-foul and we deopped points as a result. Don’t expect Arsenal fans to feel even a bit of remorse for that shitty tackle.

  89. The Shawcross Redemption:

    Chapter Two,

    The technically correct challenge that left stud marks near someone’s knee…

    hartwick89 from Untold Arsenal,
    April 3rd, 2010 at 7:39 pm

    “…… Well just because we didn’t see a bone out of a sock or a limb hanging or the physio draping an O2 mask from Rosicky’s head doesn’t mean it wasn’t a RED…

    WTF if I was on the pitch I would have gotten a RED for sticking my boot up Henry’s ass”

    Laugh, I did.

  90. Perhaps Almunia could have given Henry a technically-correct two-fisted punch in the face – without malice, of course.

  91. I think the real matter for concern is that we have here players who are happy to ‘give it some’ but are unhappy with facing the consequences. For me if you fuck up a tackle then you have to deal with the aftermath. Don’t expect the club, the FA, the pundits or your mother to sort it out for you. None of these players has the bottle to face what they have done.

    Ryan Shawcross would have at least retrieved something in my eyes if he had not cried and afterwards he had said something along the lines of..’sorry that was a shocking tackle but my main concern is for Aaron Ramsey’s health and career. I will do whatever it takes to make it right with him’

    Same with Martin Taylor. Instead of ‘My god I think I have ruined a players career and I will help him all I can’…we get ‘Poor Martin needs counselling after Eduardo broke his leg’.

    Henry’s tackle is all but the same…the outcome was just less serious.

    Do these people not know the meaning of humility, respect and above all courage?

  92. Hi, irishgray

    I’m going to agree with QoS, most other commenters here – and FIFA. The rules say nothing about any sort of intent. All that matters is what the player does. If he tackles in such a way as to endanger an opponent or himself, the tackle is a straight red regardless of whether any injury is caused or whether the tackler gets the ball.

    I understand what you’re saying, but showing malice or intent to injure would only be relevant to our opinion of the player’s character, not whether it was a red card offence or not. Also of course you are right that a perfectly good tackle CAN injure, but it is far less likely to, because a good tackle is usually a safe one. Dangerous tackles are outlawed because they are dangerous.

    You can execute a technically perfect tackle with studs down and trailing leg tucked in, BUT if (among other things) the tackle is from behind, or you had no chance of getting the ball, or the tackle was badly mistimed, it is still a foul. The referee can also judge that the tackle is dangerous based on several criteria, which include the tackle being executed at high speed or with excessive force. Karl Henry lunged in with no chance of getting the ball and Tomas had no chance of getting out of the way. Therefore it was dangerous, and a red card was issued.

    I won’t call the Wolves player “Henry” – it sullies a beautiful memory!

  93. I value the law but detest the legal process almost as much as I abhor accounting. When we start to turn these management consulting techniques on football action then I wonder where we will be in a few years time. Fucking awful tackle, got sent off. End of story.

  94. If Taylor’s guilt over the injury he did Eduardo was so severe that he needed counselling, he would of course be prepared, within reason, to “do whatever it takes to make it right with him.” That he felt no such compunction is evidence that his guilt was a sham.

  95. Well said FunGunner, Frank, GS69, and Poliziano.

    Irishgray….let’s not find excuses for opponents to break our player’s legs…we’ve had enough of that already and every time, they try to find every lame excuse why it was OK to break Diaby’s ankle, Eduardo’s leg, Ramsey’s leg, and now Fabregas’ leg…So please, give us a break. Even if it was a bad decision….we get a lot of bad decisions against us, so who the hell cares about a Wolves player getting sent off?

  96. Irishgray, you are completely wrong.

    A referee does not have to assign malice before showing a red card. He has to determine the potential for damage from a tackle not even the level of damage.

    It seems to me that you think you know what the rule book says based probably on what tv commentators tell you, but like my Italian tutor taught me when i was trying to learn by translating from the French – beware false friends.

    Sadly, most of those commentators dont know the rules either.

    Arsebloger had an excellent analogy. If i drive my car too fast and hit a pedestrian, the judge doesn’t take my lack of malice into account, he merely decides i am reckless and sentances me accordingly.

  97. Irishgray did say he agreed with the red card. I think we’ve turned him into something of a straw man here.

  98. And what an amazingly emotional experience yesterday was! The Unstoppables march on. So sad to see Cesc on crutches, though.

  99. Exactly G4E, I have no sympathy for any opposition player who gets his just desserts if it will discourage others from such dangerous tackles. We’ve had enough broken legs to be going on with. Poor Eduardo is still suffering the consequences of a ‘mistimed’ tackle and to rub salt into the wound you’ve got the armchair football managers with their prophesies of doom all over the blogosphere that his career is finished because he is not yet back to where he started before the assault.

  100. If we have to do this fucking law thing then Arseblogger and with respect you are wrong, QoS. If it is proved that you had malice or intent when driving your car into a pedestrian then you would be facing a manslaughter or murder charge. It seems like a good analogy but does not bear scrutiny.

    Sorry if the above is not clear but I translated from Hungarian to English with a Japanese-Poruguese dictionary.

  101. Not me, Pz. I was responding to this post:
    “Queen of Suburbia – the presence of malice/intent is relevant….” etc.

  102. More interesting would be if you were racing the pedestrian to the end of the road and ran over him on a crossing in your attempt to win.

  103. The analogy is relevant in a way, if it is just taken to mean that one can be guilty of an offense without malice.

  104. Worse would be the “pre-meditated” Frank.

    For example, a manager saying to his players in the dressing room: get in their faces, let them know you’re there.
    (English translation: Hack them down at every chance)

  105. For Tuesday I had the idea of returning to the 4-4-1-1 that’s worked for us in the Champions League in the past.

    My reasoning is to have two wide men in midfield to track the Barcelona full backs and pin them back, while the ‘1’ behind the main striker drops back to midfield to pressure Busquets or whichever player Barca deploy as anchor man. The man to do this is Diaby who with his height, dribbling and physical presence would be able to get into the box to assist Bendtner. Since he’s a midfielder, one who typically puts in big box to box performances he can be the 3rd man in midfield to stop us from being overrun.

    Here’s a sample line up based on tbis thinking:



    Nasri Rosicky Song Eboue

    Clichy Vermaelen Campbell Sagna


    What do you think?

  106. Passenal,

    I think people are not realizing that Eduardo is trying to use his right foot more and this is probably part of his development. I think a lot of the chances he missed were with his right foot. Yesterday for sure he didn’t try to get the ball on his left, and missed it with the right.

  107. QoS was right. The laws of the game don’t mention the word intent even once.

    It’s completely irrelevant in football except to an extent in judging penalties since the ref has to determine not just if there was contact and if contact was accidental or not.

  108. Guys I fully agree with the red card and have said so several times. I too am sick of our players being hacked down time and again, with God-awful consequences. And yes there is nothing in the rule book about intent QoS in regards tackling. But QoS there is a rule against “unsportsman like behaviour” which in general is left open for the ref to interpret. So a player who goes in with the “intention” of taking out a player should be punished, more so than a player who did not. To put Henry in the same category as Shawcross and Taylor only serves the likes of Pulis who will then use this as proof that we simply do not like being tackled and therefore cannot take it. I and you and every other Arsenal fan knows this is not true, I simply do not see the point of giving such an opportunity to all the Arsenal bashers.

  109. Irishgray – we don’t like being tackled!

    We especially don’t like being tackled in a reckless manner, with or without malice.

    I don’t think its that difficult a concept to grasp.

    That sort of tackle requires a red card every time. If the refs did their job properly then the likes of Pulis might complain for a couple of weeks but they’d soon get the message.

  110. Ole,

    I’ve had some thoughts too about the Barcelona game.

    The big question is – does Wenger change the system for this game ?

    4-4-1-1 ? 4-1-4-1 ? 4-5-1 ?

    Has he ever done that ?

    My own feeling is that he won’t change the system. I believe he will play Vermaelen and Song at the back. Campbell surely cannot play 2 games in the space of 4 days.

    I believe that he will play the following:

    ———— Almunia —————






    Now, of course, I could be completely f*cking wrong.

    If we were to go with your team, then I believe that Denilson would be in place of Rosicky.

  111. Frank – i think the analogy is sound at the level I meant it as PZ describes…I think a disciplinary panel has the ability to impose stiffer sentences if the presence of malice is determinable, the Roy Keane example loosely applying here.

  112. Irishgray – how can a player be punished for unsportsmanlike “play”? If he’s already received a straight red for a reckless or uncontrolled tackle?

  113. I don’t think missing sitters has anything to do with injury. Edu has missed sitters upon sitters since Spurs at home and still people assign his non-performance to his injury. At this rate, I don’t think he’ll get another chance next season because Chamakh and RVP are coming.

    I bet we’re wining against Barca on Tuesday.

  114. Muppet,

    I don’t know what AW will go for. I’d much like him to consider this 4-4-1-1, though I’m sure there might be something I haven’t taken into consideration that he will.

    Personally, I’ll start with both Rosicky and Nasri. The decision point would be-for me- Song or Denilson. I only chose Song because being more defensively minded he might be a better suited to a 2-man midfield.

    If we played 4-3-3 I’d prefer the following;

    Eduardo Bendtner Eboue

    Nasri Denilson Rosicky

    Clichy Vermaelen Campbell Sagna


    Bench; Fabianski, Silvestre, Song, Diaby, Walcott, Traore, Merida

  115. irishgray – I hate the position you are in, being the straw-man, but you started the thread and hopefully you are man enough to take this in good grace. But the guys are right. We at Arsenal have been the victims of too many “bloody” assaults to shed any tear for Karl Henry and Nick McCarthy. This is the same Karl Henry who earlier in the game let Walcott know that he is there by leaving his studs on his calf. In fact I am more concerned about what has happened to Eduardo since Tiny “not that sort of player” Taylor smashed his legs. Yesterday it was painful to see Eduardo simply refuse to use his left peg with any of the usual venom that we are used to. Who gives f*ck what Pulis, Allardyce and MacCarthy think about there players getting a red if this elliminates this type of tackling?

  116. F*ck off Moda. Your “concern” for Edu is sickening.

  117. Ole,

    Interesting. We shall see what happens. I have no preferences. I’m only trying to predict the team based on Wenger’s usual selections. God knows, we are down to the bare bones. We need the midfield to generate a hell of a lot more pressure than at the emirates, that’s for sure. We managed it against Milan in the San Siro, but we had slightly different personnel then; both Flamini and Fabregas were brilliant on that night.

    For me, starting with both Song and Denilson will be good defensively. If we are still in the game later on, we can bring on a more attack minded player.

    Anyway, this is all speculation. There are some rumours flying around that Song may have a groin strain. This is very bad news indeed. As if things were not bad enough.

  118. Muppet,

    Usually I feel I have half a clue what AW might do. But we’re down to barebones as you say, so he might do something different. So I have no clue whatsoever

    Song+Denilson is not a bad idea but we’ll probably suffer a lack of creativity. Remember that 0-0 will do us no good and we absolutely need to score.

  119. @ Ole Gunner & Muppet

    I must say I have changed my mind about my guess at the personnel since the other day, because of watching the Birmingham match. At the Noooooooooo Camp, it is more important for us to score than not to concede, so we need good finishers. And we also need to win and then keep the ball, and to pose a threat on the flanks, and we should test their CBs.
    Beyond that, I haven’t a clue!

  120. shotta-gunna – I have no problem being the “straw-man” and I only started it because, like most Gooners I was immediately incensed by Henry’s tackle. But then Arsene himself came out and said the sending off seemed a bit harsh, I guess I was just surprised thats all. Rant officially over 🙂

    Anyways on to Tuesday and victory over the mighty Barca. Have to say I feel very confident going into this game as they even admit they played their best ever CL away game at the Emirates and we still drew!! Clichy has been rested, Rosicky should be fine, Nasri sould also be fine. Theo on again as super-sub? Just can’t wiat 🙂

  121. FG,

    Agree. No idea. Consensus of opinion is that we haven’t got a hope in hell. Should be interesting.

  122. Ye Gods, please let Song not have a groin strain. We have only got 17 fit outfield players as it is.

  123. @ Muppet
    Well, we know it will be exciting – we have to go all-out to score. I’m going to order in industrial quantities of Valium.

  124. I didnt think Henry’s foul warranted a red. He committed to the tackle and Rosicky stepped ahead of him. He gets a yellow for not pulling out.

    However he should have had a red for his assault on Theo which was outright thuggery.

    Justice was done.

  125. FG,

    lol.. this is going to be a roller coaster.

    I think I’ll stay at work and hide under my desk, and come out when it is all over.

  126. Domenech’s moaning about Gallas is disrespectful of Arsenal and us fans. Fuck you Domenech

  127. Funny as an Irishman I do not seem to remember Domenech being this upset when Thierry handled the ball and knocked us out. As I have said before on here, Robbie Keane would have done the same, so I am not too upset, but fact is Gallas was declared fit by the medical staff and also declared himself fit, so Arsene had the right to include him. So Fuck Off Domenech!! Even the French do not like you, as a matter of fact they would rather have Arsene as their manager. I know this for a fact as I went to the first leg of our WC play-offs in Dublin V France and met a lot of French fans who to a one think Arsene is an excellent manager. Here Here!!

  128. Phew… Arsenal web site just said that Song has a slight groin strain but should be ok for tuesday.

    This week’s fuck off roll call:

    fuck off Domenech
    fuck off Andy Dunn
    fuck off Myles Palmer
    fuck off Tony Gale
    fuck off Tony Cascarino

  129. Just read that piece about Dani Alves saying we need a miracle to overcome Barca. It seems as if the catalans are drunk with confidence about their first half performance at the Grove. Pep must’ve blown so much air up their arses that they think they’ll just walk all over us because Cesc is out.

    My line up for Tuesday:


    Theo coming off the bench at about the 60th minute.

  130. “I’m going to order in industrial quantities of Valium”.

    Can you pass some on to me too?

  131. Oh, Muppet, permanent fuck off to all of those except Tony Gale & Domenech.

  132. Toure Yaya andIbra may both be out for Tuesday, but Iniesta returned to training….thats not good

  133. There’s no day that I’m not proud of you Arsene. Not one day.

    I didn’t like of his comments about the Cesc and Gallas injuries. Sometimes I wonder why he does certain things.

    The thing about Wenger is that even when he’s wrong, he’s wrong for the right reasons.

  134. Irishgrey

    Maybe AW was trying to avoid more bad press?
    Forgot to make clear I only added hartwick89’s comment because it made me laugh, and reference his end of season predictor/beginning of a golden age post!

    Moving on from the red/yellow/ two yellows thread…I can’t wait.

    In honour of the efforts of Henry & Reyes Away during the ’06 run, I hope there’s some Pace!

  135. Finsbury – either way the real point is that not one person during our little debate resorted to the usual tactics found on the likes of Le Groan, you know insults and crap…that is the real reason I even bothered putting forward my opinion in the first place as I knew even if people disagreed they would do so with respect and a genuine, though different, point of view. 🙂

    Ole Gunner – well said I like that ” The thing about Wenger is that even when he is wrong, he is wrong for the right reasons” nuff said!!

  136. Interesting to note that many commentators are saying that Barca’s pitch is “huge”. This from the Barca website – “In accordance with UEFA stipulations,the playing area has been downsized to 105 metres by 68 metres”

    However our pitch is 113m by 76m. Now this is the size of the grass area, so even if we knock 8m off both the length and the width to allow for the possibility of “playing area” and “grass area” meaning different things (i.e. the narrow band of grass surrounding the playing area) then it would seem both our pitches are identical in size. So once again dumb ass fucking commentators get it wrong!!

  137. Mr Shit-shotta-gunna

    At this stage and age; Edu will only be fit for Carling cup. Arsenal is not a charity and is not run on emotions. Injury has ruined his career and its time he gets compensated and pushed to pave way for Vela and others. True, whether you like or not.

  138. fuck off Moda, Howard or whatever you call yourself.

  139. 1 loose cannon

    Xavi on Walcott
    “He could not even be stopped by a gun.
    “Walcott can do the 100m at 10.3secs, that’s incredible for a footballer and any defender would struggle against him.”

    Then Abidal added:

    ‘Football is a sport that is played with the ball. It may be really good to run 100 metres in a little over 10 seconds, but the aim is to get to the goal.
    ‘We’ll wait for him there and we’ll see what he can do with the ball. Let’s see if he can get past four defenders.’

    It appears that the talk has been about Walcott amongst the Barcelona players and that proves they are concerned about his pace. Abidal may try to dismiss Walcott’s football skills but it does not hide the fact he is worried.

  140. 1lc – Wondering if Jamaica could turn Usain Bolt and Asafa Powell into footballers. The best fullbacks would stay up at night having nightmares.

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