Blackburn Rovers Preview: A Chance To End The Season On A Positive

Arsenal travel to Ewood Park this afternoon for the penultimate Premier League fixture knowing that a point will secure third place and passage to the group phase of next season’s Champions League. Sam Allardyce was bragging at the weekend about his fantastic record against Arsenal, hinting that having found the ‘magic formula’, he had no intention of changing the way his sides play in this fixture. No-one can say that they have not been warned about the tactics he will employ.

Blackburn has a record which mirrors that of Birmingham City in their clashes with those at the top of the table, a solid record of draws perhaps more meaningful in this afternoon’s encounter as they have been achieved in the past month or so. A win should not be taken for granted but should be achieve nonetheless. Arshavin’s return to the squad is a welcome boost as is the continued presence of Robin van Persie leading the line.

For some though, the afternoon is about redemption. Arsène has taken time to express his support for Lukasz Fabiański, falling short of making it unequivocal but boosting the Pole’s confidence along the way:

The Wigan game was such a massive disappointment that you think it might be ‘make or break’ in the next game. Do you expose him by playing? Is it better not to play him to give him time to recover? I think it’s always better to play straight away.He still has to show that he can be consistent. I know he has the talent and he has shown against Man City that he is mentally strong and that he can respond. Now the next target is for him to show that he can be consistent.

The key word is “consistency”. None of the current crop of Arsenal goalkeepers has developed this trait in the first team, all prone to mistakes. Before condemnation is too universal, mitigating factors exist for some. Inexperience of youth applies to Fabiański, Mannone and Szczęsny. Equally, no goalkeeper in the world is exempt from making mistakes but those at the peak of their powers make fewer than those who are simply good or average. This is the key developmental step for the younger goalkeepers.

The future may be bright for them but they need to develop away from the first team. Wenger hinted that the situation is not settled:

Let people think and let me do. But it isn’t an area that I necessarily want to strengthen. I don’t want to come out before the season is finished and say what areas we want to strengthen.

An open statement if ever there was one, the interpretations of which are the basis of the monomania of some. Wenger was hardly likely to admit to coveting a new custodian, such admissions are destructive psychologically for players thus to the team with third place not yet secure. It would be something of a surprise though, if a new custodian were not in place next season.

Fabiański was urged to tread in the path trodden by Emmanuel Eboué, turning around supporters views of his abilities. In the Ivorian’s case, it was mental strength that enabled him to do so, alongside his physical effort. Wenger observed that English fans love the club more than in other countries. A sweeping generalisation which would raise eyebrows around the globe. However, English supporters have a propensity toward appreciating effort; technical and temperamental deficiencies are frequently forgiven if the player is seen to be giving his all. That Eboué should never have been subjected to the abuse he was identifies the lack of patience in some as well as a morality that leaves a lot to be desired but seems to be the perfect epitaph for the Premier League.

Back to this afternoon. With the performance last week giving some confidence, OK the clean sheet part of it at least, the question for Wenger is whether to be attacking or to sit back. In reality, he needs the side to replicate the first 75 minutes at Wigan and then mix in the draw against Manchester City to close out the game. The starting line-up which may be able to achieve this is:

Fabiański; Sagna, Campbell, Silvestre, Clichy; Song, Diaby, Nasri; Walcott, van Persie, Rosicky

A point is necessary for third, a win better for confidence ahead of the end of the season. Enjoy the match wherever you are watching it.

Win A Stadium Tour

Gooner Gifts has kindly donated An Adult Legends Emirates Stadium Tour For Two as a prize for answering the following question:

Who am I? I scored 49 goals in 179 appearances for Arsenal including a famous 111th minute strike.

Email your answer, name, age and contact email here. Competition closes at midnight, Sunday May 9th 2010. Any entries received after this date will be consigned to the electronic waste basket and totally ignored.

Best of luck.

’til Tomorrow.

Posted on May 3, 2010, in Arsenal, Football, Premier League, Premiership, Soccer and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 492 Comments.

  1. Cheers YW.

    Allardyce can brag. But at the end of the day we all know he is a thug.

    Interesting quote on Sky Sports. Wenger has said that one or two players will go out, as they usually do in the summer.

    It could be Gallas and one other. The one other being a definite departure. That has to be Silvestre, as it looks like Eduardo, Arshavin and Campbell will stay.

    Coming in, Chamakh and a goalkeeper. With only a centre back coming if Gallas does not sign. Cannot see Wenger signing a centre back if Djourou, Nortveit and Gallas are available.

  2. With Chamakh coming in, I think Eduardo may ask for a transfer. Right now he seems to be number 3 in the pecking order, and Chamakh’s introduction may see him fighting it out for the 3rd choice striker’s place. Even though we may want him to stay, Eduardo will probably not see this as the ideal situation given his experience and ability.

    That is unless we revert to a 4-4-2 next season, in which case he might even become a guaranteed starter when fit and in form.

  3. The departures of Toure and Adebayor last summer were a big surprise, and were largely at odds with the statements Wenger had made about his transfer plans. There could be equally surprising departures this summer. I still think we will sign another centre back, regardless of what Gallas decides. The interest in Smalling and others during the last year suggests that Wenger wants to buy an extra defender, rather than just keeping the numbers the same. Remember that Silvestre was often preferred to Djourou last season. I don’t expect Djourou to become part of a first-choice centre-back partnership any time soon. Nordtveit might well be an excellent player, but it seems risky to depend on a someone with no Premier League experience.

  4. I think Eduardo is staying. He has already made noises that he wasn’t 100% because of a couple of muscle injuries, and as a result his effectiveness was weakened as a goal scorer.

    It seems to me as though Wenger must believe that he can return to the sharpness of old. Let’s hope so.

  5. PZ,

    Could well be the case. Yes. I wasn’t suggesting Nordtveit or Djourou would be first choice, just back up.

    If Wenger does sign a centre back then, I guess it would definitely not be a young player, but somebody to come in as first choice. Would be interesting to see what happened if Gallas did stay. Would he then be on the bench ?

  6. Great post as always YW! I think Arsene has it right, Fabianski simply needs to get consistent with his play. It is obvious that he has talent but like you said the difference between great and good is eradicating those types of mistakes from your game. I like Almunia and do in fact have faith in him as a shot-stopper(one of the very best I think) but his decision making leaves a lot to be desired.

    As for Big Sam…yes he has an admirable track record against big clubs but when will people realise that teams who play for a draw usually do well, and by well I mean drop 2 points every time they play a ‘big’ club. What this simply means is that the second he becomes your manager you are accepting at best a mid-table finish. Sounds fine for some teams but should you not after a while be wanting to see your team advance, and hell even go for a win from time to time?

    Unfortunately there are about half a dozen teams who play like this, and I think if left unchecked it could become a very boring league. Lets hope for an Arsenal victory, not just as Arsenal fans but as fans of football first and foremost.

  7. If Gallas stays, I believe it will be as a first choice centre-back. He’s too expensive to be anything else. Nevertheless, injuries would guarantee a new signing plenty of games.

    I think it’s possible that Szczesny will be our goalkeeper next season. Wenger has more or less said that he will be our first choice keeper one day; and that can only mean he will be given his chance soon, since he will not hang around for years without playing. Wenger’s reluctance to let Szczesny go on a long term loan this season implies that he was tempted to use him in the first team even this year. There was an interesting quote a week or so ago from Andy Scott, Szczesny’s manager at Brentford: “We have kept 14 clean sheets this season and [Szczesny] has been in goal for about 10 of them.”

  8. I don’t think Szczesny will be first choice next season without having spent a season as second choice. If that was to be Wenger’s plan, I am sure he would have made him second choice this season because I don’t see Wenger as the sort of person who would not plan a young player’s career graph.

  9. As the saying goes, if Szczesny is good enough, then he is old enough. A very exciting prospect. Perhaps he will brought in to compete with Almunia and Fabianski initially. Only Wenger and the goalkeeper coaches will know what they have in mind.

    If a new keeper does come in, then either Fabianski or Almunia will have to go to make way for Szczesny at some point.

  10. Don’t you be buying any of they rubbish pasties while you’re here, MD.

  11. Dont agree with the good enough old enough saying..

    Senderos was good enough, but wasnt old enough! When it comes to defenders and goalkeepers, chucking them out there when they ain’t ready mentally can destroy their career. Fabianski for me is a really talented keeper, I was actually impressed with some saves and punches against Wigan before he dropped it! We just need to give him a run of games when he is ready, maybe a run in the cups next season will do him good. Then unleash him once he is 100% confident in the Premier League.

    Its either that or put all our faith in him from start of the season. This all depends if Wenger believes in him, and if Wenger has had enough of Almunia – who is a good shot stopper, but just cant cut down the mistakes. We have to wait n see.

  12. Fabianksi is a terrible keeper, not only did he flap for wigans second, he should of saved wigans first if he had half decent reactions. If you watch it back he done a half hearted dive and the ball went under him, he is a very, very poor keeper

  13. As exciting a prospect as Szczesny seems, he’s just another exciting prospect at the club.

    He’s no more exciting a prospect than Walcott, Diaby or Denilson looked, and today they’re fodder for the boo boys and anti-Arsenal group.

    Put him in the side, and if things didnt go well, he’ll soon be pronounced as rubbish, not good enough for Arsenal, & another crap foreigner.

    I like the look of him, he’s impressed in every game I’ve seen him feature in.

  14. You dont play for Arsenal and Poland if your a very,very poor keeper! Whilst he made a blunder for the 2nd theres no way hes at fault for the first! You just dont save piledrivers from 12 yards unless the hit you! fab is decent its just his confidence is shot because of the boo boys! People who understand the game accept,for instance,that Nic and Eboue are good players,the Emirates day trippers dont which is why they play better away from home.Mannone had a great game at Fulham but looked very unconvincing apart from that.Everyone is raging about Joe Hart,trust me,hes made some howlers this year but they dont get highlighted because he plays for Brom.Szczesny looks good but he is not playing at any real level yet.Personally i would move for Shay Given as he wont want to warm the bench when Buffoon arrives.

  15. jerry watch the goal again, it wasnt a pile driver, it was more of a strong pass with the side of the foot. Fabiasnki had more then a split second to stick his arm down, a premiership keeper should be saving them, and Poland are shit by the way. Fabisnki is a very, very poor keeper

  16. LimparAssist

  17. Can anyone explain why fat Sam is at the Wigan game being played now?

    Is facing Arsenal such a low key affair that he can afford to leave his team alone pre game?

  18. The Young Guns blog this weekend did not offer much hope for the immediate future for our young defenders and GK. I copied some of the text.

    KYLE BARTLEY started at right back for Sheffield United in his final game for the Blades this season, the Yorkshire outfit are keen to bring Bartley back for next season. Kyle had a strong performance at full back in a comfortable 3-0 win. (Kyle is 19. May be good in 3 – 4 years from know. Certainly not ready for CB of a title winning EPL team)

    LUKE AYLING was again on the bench for Yeovil Town but game on in stoppage time, dropping into midfield. Town beat Oldham 3-0. ( Who knows?)

    HAVARD NORDTVIET played the full 90 minutes at centre back for Nuremberg as they were beaten 4-0 by Hamburg. Håvard struggled to impress. (Some have said maybe next Maldini? Hopefully as good as Upson in 2- 3 years. More likely Senderos.)

    WOJCIECH SZCZESNY played the full game but had one of his most disappointing performances as Brentford hemorrhaged three goals against Swindon Town. (Very disappointed to read this. Everyone has a bad game, did Casillas or Cech have bad games in their league 2? Tech 9 still could be great in a few years.)

    Almunia: Great #2 behind Paul Robinson at Blackburn.

    Fabianski: Great prospect??? Does he have the personality to command the penalty area? Needs a year on loan in an EPL team to prove himself. Our defensive ego is already very fragile. The first time he drops a ball on Titus Brambles’ head and Cesc looks at TV5 or RVP and says “here we go again” our title hopes are over.

    Le boss has said for the second year in a row that poor defending cost us a title. He could have fixed the problem this year but he deserves a mulligan. No one currently in our squad who can realistically help him fix the problem. I really hope he opens his check book and get us some good defenders and a GK.

  19. Hopkirk,i will respectfully disagree.Friedal let a pen go under him at the weekend,is he a poor,poor keeper? Poland equally are certainly not shit,not that it relevant to our situation really.I agree Fab should not be our Number one but i feel something of a reality check needed. A back 5 of Given,Sagna,Tv,Ingerhaland,and Clichy with a support of Almunia/Fab,Gibbs,Gallas,Cambell/Dj and Eboue is more than good enough.

  20. Bill

    Let’s put perspective on Szczęsny’s performance on Saturday. I was at the Swindon v Brentford game with my father who is a Swindon season ticket holder.

    1. Swindon are vying for automatic promotion
    2. Brentford are not.
    3. A home win scoring 3 goals was not unexpected. It’s hardly haemorrhaging is it.
    4. Use of that word is sensationalist and does the writer a great disservice.
    5. His performance was not brilliant nor was it as appalling as the language in your cut and paste suggests.
    6. Since you ask the question, please provide the stats on Cech and Casillas as it would be interesting to compare them. Also, let’s have the full results of any clubs that they may have played for at that level over a 2 year period so that we can see if the two ‘keepers you mention brought about any improvement.

    YW

  21. Yogi:

    Nice post. I agree completely with your statements about our GK. Every Gk makes mistakes and to single them out is wrong. Ours do seem to make more mistakes then others. Watching the recent ManU v Citeh game Van der Sar flapped terribly at a corner near the end of the last game vs Citeh. The difference between us and ManU is they covered for him and his mistake went unpunished. With us those mistake cost goals. I think that is what defines defensive “nous” which is the biggest thing we lack.

    That said, we really need a new GK and new CB. If we are able to develop some confidence and somehow gain that “nous” next year, it will all go out the window the first time Fabianski palms a ball into our own net and we start to think, its happening again.

    Your statement “The future may be bright for them but they need to develop away from the first team.” is spot on.

  22. Young Guns often goes OTT, both in praise and criticism.

    Oh, and try changing the record, Bill. How about another topic – there are plenty to choose from.

  23. @ Bill,

    Young Guns is just a blog. If you are going to start quoting people, quote people with authority, or at least some sort of track record in developing talent.

    ****

    @ Chrisgoona, jerry and Ole Gunner
    Broadly agree with your various points.

    ***
    @YW
    Thanks for the blog post. Just popped by to say let’s all send out good vibes to our lovely Ladies who are fighting for their 11th (yes ELEVENTH) FA Cup v Everton at 3pm today. If they win, it will be their 6th FA Cup on the trot. Go girls!

  24. It seems that Blackburn and Wigan are only 25 miles apart…so Sam can comfortably cycle between the two. He is such a sport, his favourite machine is a tandem and his wife usually sits at the front so she can’t tell if he is pedalling. It means he can travel in comfort and indulge in his favourite pastime of knicker sniffing.

  25. LimparAssist

    YW,

    Was Charlie Austin on the scoresheet, and do you/your Dad think he’ll stay with the Robins?

  26. Sky Sports tuned in, FG.

  27. Sorry, that was a bit harsh.

  28. I’ll answer my own questions:

    Casillas went straight into the Real first team, proof of his exceptional talent comes from the fact that he was 16 when he first made the squad.

    Cech likewise went into a Czech 1st Division side’s starting XI at a young age, at Sparta before he was 20.

    Dodgy comparison’s to make because we will never know if Szczęsny is that good because he has yet to have the opportunity.

    YW

  29. Surely no woman could carry Fat Sam as a passenger on a tandem for that far?

    Sounds like duff info to me.

  30. I’m looking forward to a double treat this afternoon, FG.

  31. I’m wondering – surely the difference between Premiership and League One is far less pronounced for GKs than it would be for players in other positions.

    Is that fair to say?

  32. LA

    Nope, Billy Paynter was the ‘hero’ with a brace. Will he stay there? Not sure. There is a lot of movement expected in the Football League with Beckford of Leeds and Maynard at Bristol City attracting attention, as well as a host of other good strikers.

    This is Austin’s first season so he might be well served by staying put and proving himself, perhaps getting a better move next summer if he is able to score as freely.

    Much I suppose depends on whether Swindon go up or not. Looking forward to going to The New Den next Saturday to see if they do or not – it is an enjoyable experience going to watch a match with no allegiance.

    Must tell Mrs YW about that and Fulham on Sunday…oh, hello dear…

    YW

  33. The Young Guns blog can go f–k themselves.

    What qualifies the kid who runs that bog to make such definitive pronouncement?

  34. Consols

    I’m not entirely sure I want to meet any woman who can carry Fat Sam…

    YW

  35. …what you think he is actually pedalling?

  36. Yogi:

    I did not see the game. I just read that in Young Guns. Generally the blog gives a relatively positive feeling about the performance of our young players which is why that surprised me. If my cut and paste and the blogs characterization was overly harsh then I stand corrected.

    The main point I was trying to make is that some on the blog have suggested that he is ready to be our #1 next year or maybe the year after and we should not upgrade our current GK situation because of him. That may be asking a little too much even for Szczesny.

    I think we should try to aggresively upgrade our GK position next year. I do not know if it will happen but I can only hope.

  37. Unbelievable reading on Le Puke the anti Arsenal blog. You have to see what “charliegeorge” and “jimbo” are writting!! That site should be banned as its owners and bloggers surely do not support Arsenal Football Club.
    Well there is now a small matter of a football match tonight and three points to be earned. Lets do it in style and shut the mouth of Big Sam and seal 3rd place in the league. No worries of a CL playoff game, a good pre season and a couple of new signings along with our players remaining fit and uninjured are the ingrediants for success next season. I bet there are a lot of clubs and supporters who wished they were as “bad” as we are!!

  38. I’m even more sure that I have no desire or inclination to meet a woman who wants to carry Fat Sam

  39. Apparently she pre-chews his chewing gum for him…just at the beginning…to get it going.

  40. uh? He’s too fat to chew his own gum?

  41. Thats why he has that headset. To tell her he needs chewing gum…or some pies…that sort of thing.

  42. I remeber that RvP goal. I was in the West Stand and when he cut in between the two Blackburn players I thought and said out loud”he’s gone the
    wrong way”
    Thats how much I know about football!

    Top of your game today Robin and you can lead us to victory and wrapping up third spot.

  43. I saw that goal too…

  44. YW, Szczęsny played for Legia Warsaw first team aged 15.

    OOU, I think the difference is concentration. Top teams like Arsenal have few attacks on our goal as we hold possession for long periods and create a lot of chances against the opposition. Our goal keepers need to be able to keep their focus for the few opportunities that come their way. That’s why the opposition goal keeper often looks good playing against us because he gets lots of chances to show his shot-stopping abilities and had to remain 100% focussed because we can be so dangerous offensively.

  45. First time I have stood to attention whilst listening to God Save the Queen…

  46. You think our attackers suffer from body odour, Passenal?

  47. Maybe they just swear a lot.

  48. Szczęsny is getting lots of opportunities to practice shot-stopping but the key attributes, by which he will be judged for the number one position are decision making, concentration and consistency. He certainly does not appear to lack confidence so he has presence, but how would older, more experienced defenders react to having him telling them what to do? Also, in the PL he would be up against a better class of striker, more decisive and clever with their finishing. It all makes a difference.

  49. I take it Fat Sam’s wife’s not playing then.

  50. She plays for Bolton, consolsbob. Uses the pseudonym Kevin Davies. She’s taken a fancy to our own Jack Wilshere, apparently.

  51. Yogi and Fun Gun:

    Alright I take it back. Yogi: not a legitimate comparison. Fun Gun your right it is just another blog. Sometimes keyboard is engaged before the brain.

    I do agree with Ole at 1:40PM. I think it has been hard on some of our 19 – 20 year olds to have to come into a team that is challenging for an EPL title. I hope that if we really do have enough money that we can give these players the time they need to develop their skills and consistancy before they have to be subjected to the pressures of an EPL title race.

    I agree with everything Poliziano said at 11:49.

  52. I don’t have Sky, so anyone watching the ladies, let us know the score please?

  53. LimparAssist

    There has apparently been talk of an under-21 call-up. I agree though, best for him to stay put for now, especially if Swindon go up. Good luck to them btw. Brilliant story anyway, he was playing in the Wessex League this time last year, on the school fields of Poole Town!

    I watch St Albans City whenever I can for the same reasons. Interesting budget-enforced ‘youth experiment’ (wretches a little bit) going on at the Mighty Saints right now. Mid-table obscurity this season but very hard-fought for midtable obscurity, by a likable group of young players. Very easy side to get behind.

    Speaking of which…

    COYG!

  54. Bill,

    I have no problem with our 19 year olds coming into the team. None at all.

    And I wasn’t suggesting Chesny is not a great keeper or is not ready.

    More than anything it’s a rant about people who won’t give our young players room to develop.

  55. The happy couple, in a rather compromising position:

  56. Arsenal Ladies 0-1 Everton Ladies. Natasha Dowie scores.

  57. I dont know why everyone is crying out for a keeper 24-7, Almunia is STILL a good keeper. Last season he was regarded as one of the best – making very very few mistakes. I think everyone agreed he was better than Cech. Now after a few patchy season everyone is on his back again. Cassilas has far from had a good season with Real yet he is still regarded as one of the best. I think with goalkeepers its all about THE NAME for many fans… Buffon, Cech etc… once you get a name you are classed as a quality keeper. Problem is with these fans that cry out for a keeper, there aint any of these Big Name keepers available so they wont ever be satisfied! I can just imagine if Wenger brought in a keeper from France or Italy that nobody heard of, but was the Shay Given of the league, the cries that will come onto the blog would deathen all. (Perfect Example: Sagna – nobody really knew sagna too well before he came to Arsenal – Wenger snapping him up as soon as he saw his potential and good performances in France)

    Almunia may or may not be here next season, maybe Wenger has seen too many mistakes, but he will only go if Wenger sees a definite better option, or is willing to give somebody else the gloves.

  58. Fleeting just missed the equaliser. Damn.

  59. @ Bill

    Are you being mischievous? Putting in a 19-year-old as goalkeeper is a wholly different proposition to putting in a 19-yr-old as a forward or midfielder. I’m sure you don’t need me to tell you that.

  60. A fleeting chance?

  61. Allardyce is a complex character.

    I loathe the thuggishness he imparts on his teams, and laugh at his delusion (he’s convinced he’s secretly a very good manager, better than Wenger, and World class).

    At the same time, I do respect certain things about him.

    What he did with Bolton was really some good work. He assembled a decent team in that hellhole, and they punched way above their financial weight.

    But what I want to highlight is that of all the sycophants (psycho pants) that surround Sir Red Nose, he’s the one who’s never content to roll over and get done in the bum.

    As much as there is to loathe about him (his elephant bum of a face for starters), he’s one manager who I have never heard after a loss do the “we played Man United what do you expect” thing after a spanking by their lord and master’s team.

  62. Can somebody explain to me why some people still think that we should buy a DM? Only recently, in some “blog”, I’ve read a demand for a DM and there were the usual names floating around. Cana, Melo, etc.

    Now why the h*ll would we need a DM? Song has matured into of the best available DMs and neither Melo nor Cana seem to be able to match him. And on the other hand for replacements we have Denilson, who can play in that position, as well as Eastmond coming through.

    Basically, for me it looks like somebody who asks for a DM somehow must be a doomer because they are denying that Song’s a great player and a vital part of our starting XI.

  63. @ chrisGoona, we do have a NAME in goal, our keepers names are Flappy-hands-ski and Clown-munia. That is not a good situation to have unless we were starting a circus.

    Of course being a keeper in teh premiership is harder then in the lower leagues, the balls put into the box are of higher quality and so are the finishing and movement of the strikers.

  64. And Ramsey, Evilfiek.

  65. Shame about the score, but thanks for the info FG

  66. ‘Can somebody explain to me why some people still think that we should buy a DM?’

    @ Evielfiek, people say we need a dm because when Song is out we look an average team. he needs better cover then denilson if we are to win the league, as this season has proved

  67. 1-1!!! Penalty to Arsenal

  68. 1-1 Passenal. Penalty

  69. Just before half time.

  70. Excellent

  71. Wasn’t Hopkirk deceased?

  72. And two yellow cards for Everton.

  73. Great, our ladies will not give up their FA cup without a fight!

  74. Hopkirk (deceased)

    Fabiasnki could maybe make it as a Ladies keeper, the ladies keepers are so terrible aren’t they.

  75. Arsenal 1-2 Everton. Half time.

  76. Damn!

  77. Hopkirk (deceased)

    I always wondered why the ladies teams dont employ a keeper who is an Athelete, maybe an ex-high jumper or Gymnast. Why do all the ladies keepers look like they have weight issues, it makes no sense.

  78. If Arsenal keep playing their game they can win this. Rachel Yankey has the defenders in her pocket.

    Slightly biased commentating.

  79. Deceased or not he is a fucking cunt

  80. Hopkirk (deceased)

    @ Frank,

    They should shoot every chance they get, even if its from the halfway line, as long as its on target the keeper will struggle

  81. Hopkirk (deceased)

    @ Frank,

    Why so abusive? very brave of you sitting behind a computer screen.

  82. COYGL!!!!

  83. I take it then that your abuse of Arsenal players is the act of a coward then Hopkirk?

  84. BTW Passenal, it’s on R5 Live Sports Extra. that’s what I’m listening to.

  85. 2-2 – we’v come back again!

  86. Hopkirk (deceased)

    @ consolsbob,

    I’m not calling them a ‘cunt’ though am I? Is that a word you use in general conversation?

  87. Vela starts.

  88. Julie Fleeting.

  89. Hull are relegated. Shame the orange one wasn’t in charge for that accomplishment.

  90. I much prefer your commentary FG, keep it coming!

  91. Vela starts? Interesting.

  92. Djourou and Gibbs on the bench.

  93. Lots of pace in that team.

    Thanks for the response earlier, Passenal.

  94. Ole:

    Your rant about people not getting room to develop is correct. I think all the people that say Theo is trash and will never be good because he struggles with consistancy at age 19 are full of crap. I still think it is not the best thing for the development of a 19 year old to have to live with the media hype and playing under the microscope of a team playing for an EPL title. It is not best for the team or the player.

    Fun Gunner:

    Absolutely true. If a 19 year winger makes a mistake we might miss a goal scoring chance. If a 19 year old GK or CB make a mistake we probably will concede.

    After I thought about what you and Yogi said I thought I would try a mulligan for my comment at 2:20PM. Hope this sounds more reasonable.

    The Young Guns blog this weekend reviewed the recent performances of some of our young CB’s and GK on loan. According to the blog none had a great weekend except for maybe Kyle Bartley, Luke Ayling did not play much and Havard Nordtviet apparently had a tough game. Sczczeny did not have his best game conceding 3 goals. I am not sure where the guy who writes the blog gets his game reports. I doubt he actually has time to watch the games. As we know the reports that come from newspapers or fans on the scene etc are not always correct and the short narratives in the blog do not tell the whole story. I do not know how much validity can be attached to what is said.

    However, I think the point that can be made is that it is probably not realistic to expect these 4 players all who are under age 20 to be contributors to our 1st team next year or even the year after. Hopefully more time on loan will sharpen their skills and they can live up to their potential and become 1st team regulars in the future.

  95. Arsenal team in full:
    Fabianski, Diaby, Sagna, Nasri, Van Persie, Vela, Walcott, Silvestre, Eboue, Traore, Campbell

    SUBS: Eduardo, Djourou, Arshavin, Mannone, Gibbs, Eastmond, Henderson

    I guess we have a few injuries? AW said he was going to play the first team for the last two games.

  96. Come on Arsenal Ladies, last-minute goal, please.

  97. Vela and Traore starting:

    I like Traore. The few times I have seen him he looks like he can cross the ball as well or better then anyone on the team. Chamakh is supposed to be a great header of the ball. We will need someone who can whip in great crosses next year. I hope he does well. Unfortunately for him I doubt he will move past Clichy and Gibbs.

  98. Oh, so close!

  99. Still 2-2. This is so nervewracking. Extra time.

  100. 2-2, going for extra time. Come on you Ladies. We had so many chances in the second half. I hope we’re fitter than they are.

  101. I have been surprised and dissapointed at the cynicism on show from the Everton Ladies Team. Fouling and then complaining when booked, calling for Yellows, bringinh players down quite cynically.

    It’s a bit like watching Bolton. They even have their own Fat Sam as manager.

  102. hey guys.. any of you other US gooners scrambling to watch this somewhere? anyone have a link? the one i normally use apparently isnt showing it

    thanks

    and COYG!!!!

  103. Good to see that twat Burley tell us on ESPN that in his opinion ‘you can’t be too physical’.

    Neanderthal.

  104. No Bendtner, Clichy or Rosicky? Looks like the injury curse is not done with Arsenal for this season!

    Thanks for the team news and the updates on the ladies game FG

  105. Im excited to see vela get a start at last….have always had high hopes for him…hope he doesnt leave in the summer and goes on to have a brilliant world cup!
    ]

  106. Gibbs and Djourou on the bench !!

    And Vela in the starting line up !

  107. I’m not watching the match, cbob, just listening, but that’s the impression I’m getting as well!

    Oh well. I’m switching to the Blackburn commentary now.

  108. Oh and apparently ‘…Arsenal have flirted with the Title race without ever being a part of it’.

    You couldn’t make it up.

  109. Rosicky and Clichy ankle injuries.

  110. Cbob, even if we had won, they would probably say we’d never been in it!

  111. what a miss

  112. Was that a really bad miss for Vela?

  113. Well done Fabi.

  114. Robin Reliant!!!!

  115. RvP! Old school Arsenal goal!

  116. Just me, then?

  117. RVP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  118. if anyone deserves a goal..its him

  119. well done robin

  120. van persie click click click

  121. hahaha..fg…reliant robin!

  122. Reliant on what, though? Good service? From what I’ve heard, the Reliant Robin was reliant on more than just good servicing to keep it on the road.

  123. They are targeting Fabianski

  124. Robinson from the halfway line. Blackburn are a joke.

  125. Shit. Everton score. 2-3.

  126. This is going to be a great test for Fabianski though.

  127. Fungunner, I bet the keeper was at fault?

  128. Did the commentator say that the 6-2 scoreline from the previous meeting flattered the Gunners?!?!?

    out of order and rude!

  129. At least he caught It, well done Fab !!!

  130. I hope we put 7 past smug Fat Sam and his thugs. Love to see Vela get a hat trick.

  131. Classy play by Eboue there.

  132. Everton have beaten us. Sob sob.

  133. This will be good for Wookash’s confidence.

  134. Ref saves Fab again, I like this ref

  135. Why does he flap like this every fucking time?

  136. Bollocks.

  137. That should have been a foul. You can’t blame Fabianski for that.

  138. A foul? He went diving into them

  139. Goalmouth scramble.

  140. Agreed, OOU, Samba jumped straight into Fabianski. Nice flick from Roberts, though.

  141. Roberts was barging him. What was he supposed to do?

  142. He is the keeper, he is allowed to do that in the 5 yard box. They were blocking him.

  143. All teams will target him now, I think fabs time might be up in the premiership

  144. Watch it again – he’s got his elbow in Fabianski’s face, FFS.

  145. How did Dunn not get a booking earlier for pulling Eboué? And now Grella elbows RvP straight to face, now booking of course.

  146. Wow, what a thug with the elbow strike..

  147. He then stood to the side of the goal, he’s shitting his pants

  148. No goalkeeper in the world would’ve been able to prevent that goal.

  149. 2 elbows on RVP’s head in that half.

  150. Not fabianskis’ fault at all, it was scrappy goal

  151. WTF is all this Fabianski bashing and vile spreading by this commentators?? What is he supposed to do if the ref is not competent enough to spot an infringement on Him? This looks like of of them games where one of ours gets injured. The ref is doing fuck all to protect them from these Thugs!!!

  152. 1 loose cannon

    Blackburn started quietly to fool the ref that they are not dirty but slowly, slowly they started their dirty tactics elbowing, presisiting with fouling and blocking Fabianski. Roberts pushed fabianski prior to the goal it should be a foul.

  153. flappers could stop bullets today it doesnt matter we still need a wc keeper.

  154. Sorry to hear about the ladies losing out. Hopefully the lads will pull it round second half.

  155. Where is NB52? Is he hurt. I hope the boss gets NB/Chamakh and RVP in games together next year even if it means changing formation.

    I am surprised Wenger started Vela instead of Eduardo if the latter is really fit.

    Need to get a point to guarantee 3rd place.

    COYG.

  156. When Song barged a player like Walcott just was, a few weeks ago, he got given a yellow and picked up a two game ban.

  157. Yes but Blackburn have to be physical to compete with fancy dan Arsenal, Finsbury.

    Be reasonable.

  158. Great save Wookash.

  159. He was offside.

  160. HAHAHAHA!

  161. Eduardo, as he said in his recent interview, has been carrying a few niggles, Vela hasn’t played much.

    Not a surprising selction.

    Phew. Save!

  162. “fancy dan” – I love that expression. It’s so 1950s-sounding.

  163. What a diving c*nt..

  164. 1 loose cannon

    That diving thing Pedersen is at it again

  165. So it’s a definite penalty even though the Blackburn player was offside.

    Do these people actually think between sentences?

  166. These two ESPN commemators are f*cking morons.

  167. That was RVP’s fault for over running the ball.

  168. Fabi is on fire.

  169. Wow, first diving than kicking. Pedersen is a real thug.

  170. Muppet – I think you are running a serious risk of being sued for defamation of character by morans.

  171. So they gave a foul then, but not for the blatant foul on the goal?!

  172. they really have resorted to the dirtiest tricks…THIS IS NOT FOOTBALL

  173. 1 loose cannon

    A change is needed to freshen things up. Who is available o the bench?

  174. I think Fabianski needs to be a bit more dominant. Pushing attackers away, if it has to be, but if someone is standing in his 5 yard box and obstructing him…just imagine what Lehmann would’ve done.

    However, so far, he has had a good game. I hope this is the start of a consistent run of form for him..

  175. What do you expect from Alladyce?

  176. “Wow, first diving than kicking. Pedersen is a real thug.”
    The two tend to go together.

  177. THAT WAS A FUCKING PEN!

  178. I think the ref should give a couple of yellows to Blackburn. They seem to get into the kicking mood…

  179. Arshavin getting ready to come on…

  180. Another good save!

    Rotational Fouling on RVP today?

    Poor old Salgado, struggling, has his arm wrapped around Traore, clearly impeding his movement after he’s been beaten. No foul.

    MS does the same.
    Yellow card.

    I’ll shut up now.

  181. The best thing to say about Blackburn is that their fans, players and manager deserve one another.

    It must be a truly horrible place.

    Even decent players like Pedersen become infected with their sheer nastiness.

  182. Well done Carlos.

  183. Am I the only one who wants to punch somebody in the face when he hears the “Same old Arsenal — always cheating” chant? Especially when we are playing against a bunch of thugs like Blackburn…

  184. This is BS!!

  185. Fabianski needed more help from the defence there.

  186. Freaking animals.

  187. What can you do against that?

  188. So he pushes Sol into LF this time.

    Cunning.

    They must have practised that one all week.

  189. King kong aint got s*** on Samba…….what a yucky guy!!

  190. I really don’t think I can watch another Arsenal defeat.

  191. THIS MUST BE THE LAST GAME FOR SYLVESTRE AND FABIANSKI

  192. What really needles me is that Allardyce will claim a moral victory and how he tactically out thought Wenger.

  193. i feel sick

  194. our defence needs culling!!!

  195. Explain what Fabianski has done wrong today, Sol…

  196. Anyone who thinks we dont have a goalkeeping problem is BLIND

  197. Sami Allerdici has tactically outhought Arsene Wenger.

    At times it looks like Blackburn have twelve players on the pitch.

    The Away support is brilliant.

  198. too many half players out there.

    the day we start to fear teams like blackburn is the day we have already lost.

  199. Sol with a Zidane-esque twirl!

  200. The passing today has been below standard.

  201. How we miss Cesc., I have yet to see one ball played in with precision.

  202. Into the final third that is.

  203. It’s not the passing … we simply lack creativity in midfield.

  204. this is sad.

  205. …. great job, ref.

  206. anybody knocking fabianski today knows FUCK ALL

    when called upon to make saves he has been spot on today

    both goals were fucking fouls on him

    admit you just want to hate him for any reason.

    anybody know where fabianski was when JFK was shot?

  207. How damaging will it be if we lose 3rd?

  208. i think fabianski will be a cracking keeper.

    We do need a new no 1 though…for now

  209. fat bastard,i hate i dont want to say his name

  210. 1 loose cannon

    the wheels have truly come off. This is hard to take. We have to get a point against Fulham to secure 3rd spot.

  211. We didnt play with any tempo even when we were a goal down. The boys cannot get up for the matches it seems.

  212. Very, deano. But we won’t.

  213. What the fuck

  214. You can’t blame Fabianski for the goals. The team we put out was weak and Blackburn are strong at home: Silvestre, Troare, Vela are all weak links.
    Is Bendtner injured?

  215. Awful day all round.

  216. Well, that was a truly horrible experience. I’ve had enough of this season now.

    Roll on the next.

  217. How on earth can anyone advocate on this site that progress has been made this season?

    9 defeats in total – 1 win against the teams fighting for CL places (Tottenham at home) .. Is this progress?

    Sack Wenger !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  218. People say we have improved this season, but there is clearly no evidence to that. This has been a very disappointing season. The Refs keep getting worse n where is the fight from our players? Its just plain stupid all this. Some players are playing consistently bad. Gosh

  219. Why dont we push the goalkeeper into the goal when we take corners?

  220. 1 loose cannon

    Im so disapointed how things just collapsed at the end of this season. We were supposed to have the easiest run in. At least the picture is clear for Wenger now, He knows what needs to be done to go the next level.

  221. Paul N, exactly, its not pro evolution soccer where everything has to look perfect, its real football with real people, time we realised it

  222. Well, just when we thought refereeing has hit rock bottom already this season. That was just awful. And another invention of dirty tactics. Push and impede the keeper every time, the ref wont give it always no matter how blatant it is.

    Btw, since there is been talk of womens game and keepers, this kind of crowding of the six yard box is widely used in womens game. Or at least in the Euros it was.

  223. Fabianski had a good game. The goals haven’t been his mistake. The only mistake he made was that Blackburn wrong footed him on one freekick (the one where three of their players “tried” to take it and that sailed closely past the left post). However, he needs to spend a week or two with Lehmann to learn something about being a dominant keeper. Not just organising your defenders, but making sure that the 5yd box is a fortress. If some defenders barges into you — push him away.

    Traore looked okay, but he is still a few years short imo. Vela had one big chance but other than that had a fairly quiet game. Diaby was okay, but gave the ball away too easily at times. Theo Walcott did “his thing” which means a couple of good deliveries but I wish he would try to cut back inside more often.

    All in all not a good performance..but unfortunately I can understand them. Nothing to fight for left…

    Hope we can get a result next week against Fulham (Wondering what kind of side they will field considering that they are having a cup final soon) to end this season on at least some form of a high..

  224. england will never win the world cup as long as fat twat is involved in football in this country.

  225. look on the bright side guys!

    …hull are relegated

  226. I dont get this loss at all, something has gone wrong mentally in our team. I say play the reserve team agaisnt Fulham

  227. paul n, are you fucking kidding me? if spuds beat city then we must win our home game

  228. fouls 20 – 16.

    why can’t the referees have video technology or seeing eye dogs or something?

  229. If our keepers get no protection it doesnt matter who we have in goal.

  230. EF, Fabianski has to fight for his space, on the second goal he didnt do that. I am not sure if you are allowed to push the goalie that way but Blackburn did and got away with it. Fabanski shoudlve forced his way. Not saying he had a bad game but he must learn to impose himself.

    Its time for Arsenal to stop being nice, if we are not at the top of the fairplay list then so be it!!!

  231. 42 goals conceded, blady ell are we the new Wigan? Its clear what Arsene needs to do and i hope he does it. These players have to earn the right to play For The Arsenal and the first team. They have recently added a lack of ideas in the final third, to our defensive frailties. I need a drink now.

    We just have to improve next season.

    COYG!!!

  232. Well, exactly what I am saying, Paul N. Somebody like Lehmann wouldn’t allowed the opposition to do that. And Fabianski has to take him as an example to succeed. Because he has the ability, I think he has shown it today once again. And he looked confident. He just needs to get the right mindset to dominate his box against the opposition.

  233. eeeeer morse, what the hell are you talking about?

    I am saying that I am shocked we loss this game.

  234. Paul N- The loss is probably because we had a very weakened team (one first 11 defender playing) and we were playing a team that are very hard to beat at home.
    Was that Vela’s last chance?

  235. If City beat the Spuds…which is what we want isn’t it? Then we are third on goal difference, without having to beat Fulham. Thankfully Fulham have a final to play so there is extra insurance there.

  236. Tough on Fab…
    Did not think our midfield impressed in any way, lost the ball too often

  237. “Chris Samba heads in from about a yard out – Sol Campbell muscling his own keeper out of the way but failing to actually attack the ball”

    Interesting edited account of Blackburn second goal from the BBC.

    Why did Sol barge his own keeper out of the way?
    Why?

    What a bunch of jokers.

  238. I’m curious to hear suitable strategies for a goalkeeper when he’s being pushed.

  239. I agree EF, he had a very good game apart from that. He will learn but the cost of the learning has hurt us real bad this season.

    It seems Arsenal have only won one game with Fabianski in goal. We cannot put the blame all on him but its still not a nice stat for him to be associated with.

  240. They beat us becuase of fabianski, its that simple

  241. worst goalkeeper to ever wear the arsenal shirt, with almunia a close second. Silvestre is worse than gus cesar. Theo is most over rated player in arsenal history. Total shit.

  242. OG, he has to fight for his space before hand until the ref realizes that they are crowding him and gets involved, that what I saw Lehman and even Almunia do.

  243. Vela missed the wide open net, no? dont put all the blame on the Fabi. The team didnt play with any sense of urgency and this is what we get.

  244. bradys right foot

    Truly awful every aspect of this game. Special mention goes to the referees, his performance was jaw dropping infact quite simply the poorest 90 minutes i’ve ever seen by an official. It was so poor that its the first time i’ve ever come away from a game and thought that the referee was deliberately bias. I know the ref can have a poor game and get descisions wrong even the best ones, but this was different this stunk. To top it all I had to look at Jabbas gloating face at the final whistle a truly horrible day.

  245. @ EvilFiek “All in all not a good performance..but unfortunately I can understand them. Nothing to fight for left…” Nothing to play for?? Common when did pride stop being an issue? This season has seen a lot of our recent history against teams get shattered; S*ds, Wigan and now Fucking fat twat Sam

  246. The goals may not have been LF fault. However, that is not the point IMO. We have lost confidence in our team defense. How can we concede 2 to a crap side like Blackburn. 41 goals now conceded this year.

    Every keeper flaps at a few and makes a few mistakes. However, in our case they have become magnified. The first time Fabianski flaps at a corner next year the team will look at each other and say. Here we go again. Our team defensive nous is already at a low and can’t afford that.

  247. if wenger thinks we only need 3 players he’s living in a world of his own now…

    he wants to talk about mental strength and winning mentality..

    no win in 8 games and a pathetic end of season collapse tells me all what i need to know about this squads mentality.

    pathetic..pride and passion do not exist at this club anymore..excuses are used and losers are praised..a manager who throws two cups out of four every season does not breed a winning mentality…throwing cups and giving poor performers new contracts does not teach winning..

    our weaker players are targetted by opposing teams and we lose points because of it..

    out with the deadwood please this summer and get some fresh faces in

    build a squad that can cope with injuries and go for all 4 trophies next year..the fans deserve more for all the patience theyve had and all the money theyve spent..

    the squad is not good enough..

  248. I’m just glad theres only one game left, if there was three we could of easily fucked ourselves completely

  249. You never used to be such a doomer matt.

    It’s been an awful couple of weeks but try and keep some perspective.

    Time enough for post mortems post season.

  250. Paul N,

    Unfortunately, if the ref turns a blind eye, then this will happen again and again and again.

    Even before they scored, it happened one time and Fabianski had a go at the ref…..

    It was disgraceful refereeing.

  251. Lets just give the spuds 3rd, lets be honest they actually deserve it more than we do! I dont know who is to blame today, but it is easy to see this squad has no spine. What we do about that, well fucked if i know. At this stage i think the ladies team would whip us.

  252. you wish sp*d. And now f*ck off.

  253. 1 loose cannon

    Finsbury good question. Sol barged into fabianski because the Blackburn defenders targeted Fabianski throughout the game Sol thought of giving him some support, in the end it was messy job. in tjis situations Mad Jens used to get to all sort of tactics to put off over physical defenders. Fabianski was let down not by quality but rather naivety and lack of aggression in the box.

  254. you fuck off you blind fool,,

  255. The team hasnt been able to recover from the Barca loss and the injuries, not to mention the Wigan loss which killed our pl titles hopes

    This team doesnt need a whole lot of players they need to forget about those blinkin games for now.

  256. The ref was bad, but we lost because we were woefull, no desire, no quality. I’m sick of blaming everyone and there mother, the players have to take responsibility

  257. Dont be such a twat bb everyone knows we have been contending for the title this yr.only people like u deny this. Why dont u jus appreciate the effort of the lads this yr in the face of adversity (being written of by everyone n serious injuries) to be involved till the last month. Instead of cryin cause u aint got braggin rights this yr.
    Twat!

  258. Sol didn’t barge into Fabianski. It was Dunn who barged into Sol and into Fabianski.

    It was intentional and completely planned.

  259. Bob,

    A lot of people need to be told to fuck off. Where should one start?

  260. Arsenal will come third. Of that there is no doubt…and next season we will start with fresh momentum and a fit, slightly different squad. A dreary end to the season playing dreary teams in dreary stadiums. The EPL surely cannot be the best league in Europe?

  261. ateeb, start with fabianski

  262. Ole is correct. Dunn backed in so far he was almost doubled over.

    I wonder why at free kicks and corners we never put that pressure on the opposition keeper. We allow him to just come and catch the ball.

  263. OG, it was a joke. I was wondering how comes the TV clowns didnt mention it on that goal. I just dont see how players backing into your goalie can be allowed!! how sick!!

  264. Football in the EPL really is being dragged down to the lowest common denominator.We are back to Wimbledon in the eighties. Dull as ditchwater.

  265. “I’m sick of blaming everyone and there mother”

    Post of the day. You win Morse. Your honesty is admirable.

  266. I can’t remember a goalie being pulled up for pushing a player away in the sort of situation Fabianski ended up conceding…we had two players – Fabianski and Sol – against Samba…they should have done better!

  267. frank, you’re right we were dull as dishwater, almost as bad as we played against city at home

  268. Ah good, the same wankers who post whenever we lose are here. Awesome.

  269. 1 loose cannon on May 3, 2010
    at 7:22 pm

    Thanks for that,
    I think you’re right 1lc, (I was calling the BBC jokers). I was not sure how Sol could’ve pushed the player (Nelson) who ‘fell over’ away without that ref giving a pen, but there probably is a way. to deal with the old slapstick fall over routine. It can’t be new.

    I imagine Baresi had a Special Move for such moments.

  270. Well, will you say it or shall I, Ateeb my brother?

  271. yes Frank I agree that the EPL is vastly over rated and once Murdoch’ s bubble will burst, there will be many dead bodies left, but where does this leave us?

    We are not such a brilliant footballing side as per our results ın Europe. There are a number of teams in Italy, Spain and Germany (prob even France) that are superior to us. Lets be honest.

    Remember – we played a friendly against Valencia at the start of this season – and got played off the pitch

    Wenger is a spin master, but the holes are gaping now .. We need change quickly before it’ s too late

  272. Morse seems like someone who deserves a big one?

  273. Pretty easy solution hey goons?

    Lets buy a 40M keeper

    apparently those ones are not allowed to be fouled, elbowed, obstructed etc

  274. LimparAssist

    Very poor performance, but if you can’t see we lost today because of two heinous refereeing decisions, and you call yourself an Arsenal supporter, you really are fucking useless.

  275. I agree with LA.

  276. I agree that the referees sucked and have gotten worse and worse.

    Unfortunately the more we whine and complain about the referees and make excuses the worse our reputation gets and the more bad calls go against us. We need to shut up and start winning again. Maybe we should push back once in a while.

  277. True dat LA.

    We didnt play our best but how can the way how these teams play us be overlooked. I am so confused, didnt the linesman see what was going on in the box.

    The PL is a blasted disgrace for real!!

  278. whats happened to our creativity? Fabregas cannot be sold no matter what happens, he is worth his weight in gold

  279. As for the ref — I still don’t understand why Pedersen didn’t get a red for his foul on RVP. Just a yellow — the same thing Sol got for a 100% fair tackle.

  280. Bill, no doubt we will have to push back, we just have to do. It was so calcuated what they did but yet it went over as if Fabianski just didnt get to the ball.

  281. Arsenal is supposed to be my way, and a lot of yours aswell, of escaping life, something to ease the mind when thinking of it, something to get away from depressing parts of life that are hard to ignore. Fucking hell i need to find something else to do now.

  282. fucking blackburn

    1 win in 8 now, lets at least beat fulham to end our misery fucking hell, i really dont know why im so bloody depressed about a pointless game anyway.

  283. LimparAssist

    I heard Sam Allardyce’s wife pushes back.

    (too jazzy?)

  284. Morse, the team is down on their confidence. You should be able to see that.

    They didnt want to play for 3rd place, after being written off all season and clawing back into things, they wanted so bad to win the PL.

  285. LimparAssist

    That’s football, Zap. Keep your chin up.

  286. Fuck off JonJon.

  287. I don’t know, Limpar. That photograph suggests Allardyce’s wife is all too submissive.

  288. I don’e know Ateeb.

    There are so many candidates.

  289. That wasn’t some quaint country speak by the way. I just cocked up my typing.

  290. Correction.

    The agent provocateur was Dunn, not Nelson.
    (I’d trust OleG over myself on that!)

    This Rotational Fouling stuff gets me confused.

  291. Paul N:

    I agree with LA. Neither of the goals should have counted. Nothing we can do about it.

    The more we whine and complain the worse it will get. How many EPL players laugh when they see a quote in the press from and Arsenal player saying “we need more protection”. To make it worse we are arrogant about our football. How many Stoke or Villa players want to hear about “long balls” even if it is true. We put huge targets on our back.

    Lets just shut up and play football even if it means pushing the other team as hard as they push us.

  292. Missing verminator, gallas, clichy, fab, song, NB. almunia.
    This is a starting line up. With RVP just coming back that’s our spine.
    Vela, traore, silvester; not starters.
    Try comparing this to our rivals.

    I would say we dropped off in the critical moment of the season. Unfortunately all the hard work to get to the position to compete was for nought, except the we were truely out of the picture only a fews back and not in november.
    So it’s not as bad as it seems.

  293. Who is the we who are arrogant Bill? Wenger was complimenting how Villa played and how they used the long pass with precision.

    Arsenal are not arrogant but proud to me.

  294. where the fuck did morse come from. ffs in recent weeks the bar of c*ntitude has been raised.

  295. Be patient, we’re still in transition. We just need another few years. We need to be more patient on the pitch, we need to knock the ball about a bit more instead of being so gung ho. The team is getting on a bit, and we need some younger players with potiential. Be patient, the next 10 years will fly by.

  296. “Their (Blackburn’s) main purpose every time is to stop the goalkeeper, not go for the ball, and both times for both goals that happened.”

    Asked if Fabianski was at fault in any way, Wenger defended the goalkeeper.

    “No,” he said. “I think he had no chance as a goalkeeper, he was pushed every time.”

  297. Good for Wenger. This is an absured situation!!!

  298. Paul N.

    We should be proud of our football but we need to keep that to ourselves.

    The boss has been complaining about “anti-football” and “long balls” for the last 2 years. The term “long ball” is now used to mean poor boring football. As much as you and I agree completely with everything he says it just puts a little bigger bullseye on our back. It certainly does nothing positive for the team.

  299. arsenehollis

    We had 2 players today who were good on the ball, worked hard, and basically did shit-all for us. Diaby and Eboue, nothing more.

    Limpar, if you think the ref cost us a game against that shit bunch, who we should have murdered anyway, after we lay down for 75 minutes then you are off your trolley.

    As for goalies who deal with being pushed, it takes some serious effort to be so blind to a keeper who has form in that sort of crap all season. This is not an anomaly.

    If we had all our players fit for the last 6 league games we would have put up a real fight. However, even with what we put out, 2 draws and 3 losses in 6 is well, well below what we could expect. It is dire form at the crunch.

    Of our 11 out today, Traore was the only one not capped by his country. Our back 5 had an average age over 25. Nasri, Diaby, Walcott, RVP are all first team players.

    It takes a stunning amount of nonsense to hide the fact that we died this season against teams that even with our injuries, we should have beaten.

    Please, go back and look at the starting 11 against the scum and ask who there was out of their depth playing in a game like that.

    A lot of players have let us down the back end of this season. Our top talent is fine, but both goalies, Sagna, Eduardo, Vela, Bendtner, Nasri, Walcott, Diaby, Arshavin really need to look hard at what they have offered.

    This squad needs freshening up and pressure needs to be put on the squad players, so they play like a career at Arsenal is worth fighting for, not a fucking birth-right.

  300. Gainsbourg69

    “Pretty easy solution hey goons?

    Lets buy a 40M keeper

    apparently those ones are not allowed to be fouled, elbowed, obstructed etc”

    Those £40 million keepers come with an invisible shield and telepathy for communicating with referees when under distress.

  301. We started the season so well. Only one starter today started against Everton at the beginning of the season. Rvp, Says it all really doesn’t it?

  302. arsenehollis

    Even with the shit goals, we didn’t deserve to win.

    You can’t expect any better than that away at Blackburn, i has been that way for years.

    We had enough talent to win that game, but we didn’t show it today.

    This squad has shown some serious mental weakness in recent weeks.

    Almunia at Brum.

    The whole team at the lane – that was diabolical, a true disgrace in the circumstances.

    Wigan. Nuff said.

    Nothing to offer against shitty, no imagination, no guile, no real fight.

    Today was just the same.

    This season can’t end quick enough.

  303. I like Paul Whitehouse.
    I think the Blackburn HT team talk went a little like this:

  304. LimparAssist

    One of the decisions I was talking about was the blatant penalty we should have had when Salgado spear challenged RVP in the back of the legs, but yes, I agree with you Bill, let’s just shut up; you go first.

  305. Arsenhollis, so we have to deserve to win now? What team has “deserved” to win every match.

    Come on, fact is that Blackburns goals shouldve been dissallowed forget the deserve arguement, did they deserve those goals.

  306. “…break ‘is legs!”

  307. ha ha, LA!!

  308. arsenehollis

    2 players started against Everton also.

    6 more where in the match day squad.

    We added:

    Fabianski, Campbell, Traore, Diaby, Walcott, Nasri, Vela.

    6 of those are seen as the future of the club and have been given new long term contracts Frank. Are they up for that or not?

    Let’s not hide, we put out a top quality side, not a bunch of mugs.

    It is an insult to those players to mug them off as inferior replacements.

  309. 2 players started Sagna as well Frank ..

  310. arsenehollis

    Blackburn’s penalty shout for the foul on Pedersen was as good as ours.

  311. The goals were fine, we sound pathetic blaming everything on everyone else. We were bad and need to sort it out this summer, heads must roll. we always thought we had a great squad but we dont, we have a great eleven but average cover. No where near enough to win the league or the champions league. I hope we go for the fa cup next season, its still a great competition

  312. well it wouldve ended up 1-2 then AH? possibly atleast.

  313. arsenehollis

    On the team’s performance…
    “I think it was a poor game. And that’s it.”

    On why Arsenal was not at their best…

    “Because I believe that some individual performances will explain that. The fact that Blackburn defended well. They were sharper in the fight than us. In the one-versus-one they were on top of us. I believe as well we were unlucky because there was a penalty on Van Persie in the second half at 1-1. It could have gone both ways, but overall Blackburn was sharper in the duels and in the fights than us. And then it becomes very difficult to win football games.”

    At least Arsene is honest, we lost that, no one else.

  314. Morse, please!

  315. LimparAssist

    If Emerton Boyce pushes John Terry and Petr Cech over the goal line with his arse next Saturday, at Stamford Bridge, while making no attempt whatsoever to win the ball, and Wigan score – do you think the goal will stand, arsenehollis?

    Not an anomoly? No, it’s not an anomoly, it’s a fucking joke.

  316. That fuck for our last minute goals this season as well, we’ve got out of jail this season in many ways

  317. f*ck off you troll.

  318. The fact we threw away another lead as well, oh god !!! I just feel sick about this….Fat fucking sam for gods sake

  319. Wenger:

    On Fabianski’s performance…
    “I think it was a foul on both goals. There is no purpose to play the ball from the Blackburn players. Every time it’s to stop the keeper from getting to the ball. And in football when you don’t go for the ball, when you stop your opponent, the keeper, from going for the ball it’s a foul.”

    On if he thinks Blackburn targeted Fabianski…
    “I don’t know. I’m not in the dressing room. But I think the referee cannot allow that. You have no chance as a keeper to go for the ball if every time you go somebody pushes you. The two players in front of him every time had only one purpose – to stop him from getting the ball. They did not even watch the ball.
    But that does not take away from the fact that we were not good, but that’s completely unfair for me.

    On if Fabianski should have had more protection from the referee…
    “When it is a foul, [calling] a foul is the right protection, you know? I am very disappointed that he lets that happen in a football game. It’s unfair to a goalkeeper. If they did it well, they do it well, but you know that, you feel that when you smell the game as a referee. You have to give more protection. He has no chance. When you jump into the air and are unbalanced, what can you do?”

  320. I have to say that even though the Blackburn tactics are blatantly illegal, the reality that should have sunk in by now is that the refs ARE going to allow it.

    The question is what are WE going to do about it.

    We go into these games refusing to address what will be done to us…now I’m not suggesting we change our style of play – but no one was protecting Flappy. No one was making them pay for their tactics. I hear a lot of talk about how we were naive…naive to me is pretending that we can get away with ignoring the tactics of our opponents.

    I agree with Wenger that you should stick to playing your game but like a kid getting bullied at school – eventually you have to do something.

    Am I just getting overly upset at the loss?

    They are a dirty team…so do we just plan on losing those games each year because we can’t respond to their dirty play?

  321. arsenehollis

    Paul – give me a break, you are clutching at straws dude.

    We didn’t deserve anything than the beating we got, that hurts, but it is true.

    We played like shit, the game was won and lost there.

    Please, no more of this whiney faggot nonsense about refs, injuries, hackers, cloggers, opposition tactics, pants luck.

    In the crunch games, ALL SEASON, we have defended like turd, have a bunch of goalies who throw the ball in the goal, have shown very little fight, and have proved to be mentally weak.

    We are a super talented squad, so we do very well compared to most sides, but in truth we compete with only 4 or 5 teams n England and maybe 8 in Europe. In that company we have bombed big time. We need o make changes to the balance of the squad asap to suppliment the world class players we have.

  322. arsenehollis

    Yes Limpar, we are persecuted, that is why we didn’t win the league.

  323. notlager I am not a troll, its me Randell / hopkirk, my old name wasnt working for some reason I dont mean to change it. i am not a troll I support arsenal but feel sick in how our club is falling apart. i like to talk hinestly about what I see and not a load of bollocks, blaming everything on evryone else. is that so wrong? What were you happy with this performance? Happy with the last eight games? we’ve looked clueless and mentally weak. I think wenger is great but i also feel he has lost sight of reality a little bit. Maybe got a bit wrapped up in himself. If he just changed a little bit we would win the league. Oh well, maybe this summer he will bring in the proven quality players needed and everything will be back to normal

  324. Arsenhollis, I aint clutching at anything sir. right is right. I am not saying we deseved to win but it doesnt mean our goalie should get fouled all game long now does it?

  325. On this game affecting Fabianski’s confidence…
    “I think he had a good game. It should affect the confidence of the referee.”

    Bad day for Arsenal Football Club, not helped by yet another incompetent referee.

  326. You are something else, you are arsenhollis. the way how are you behaving speaks volumes, you dont come in defence of the team in the least but you highlight all the negatives you can.

    joke business!!

    Mi done!

  327. I’m not going to get too worked up by the defeat today or the recent defeats.

    Yes, our strength in depth is now in question.

    But we are the only club that have been without so many first choice, and key players.

    Chelsea and Manchester United have not had the same number and depth of injuries.

    Therefore, to point the finger at our squad depth is not fair. You would have to ask the question, would Manchester United have won without Van Der Sar, Ferdinand AND Vidic, Evra, Scholes, Carrick at Blackburn ? They barely came away with a draw at Blackburn. The same question applies to Chelsea.

    We lost to Wigan. So did the chavs.

    We lost to Spurs. So did the chavs.

    We held Manchester City at home. The chavs did not.

    Let’s not get hysterical here. It was a poor performance, sure, but Blackburn barely deserved the victory in my view. The referee did not notice a push on Campbell for the 2nd goal. VP should have got a penalty.

    It’s been a disappointing end to the season, but we just have not had any luck in my view with injuries. Those that say that injuries should not matter should remember that we had some extremely tough fixtures in this period.

  328. We didn’t deserve to win today. No doubt about that.

    But yet again, more crap refereeing. It’s unacceptable that 5 times in that game, Fabianski was fouled.

    Once he had a right go at the ref for not giving the foul and you could just see what was coming.

  329. Wenger is a wise man,

    On losing seven games away from home this season…
    “I believe that many teams lost games. At the moment, since we are not in the race anymore, something is gone in the belief. We tried to do well, but you see that something is missing. That is called belief to go for something. That’s why we lost the last two games.”

    On how to restore belief…
    “There is one game to go and we don’t play away, we play at home.”

    The expectation were so high. The team is devestated.

  330. I agree with Frank. Always

  331. I can’t wait for this season to end. This is depressing.

    We still need 1 more point or the spurs to drop a point to finish 3rd. Lets beat Fulham at home next weekend. We really have something to play for and they have nothing.

    I hope the spuds draw with Citeh. We all hate the spuds but having citeh and its money in the CL is a much bigger long term danger.

  332. Paul N.. get the fuck outta here with that bullshit son. The team is devastated??!.. Boo-fucking-hoo! I suppose all the away fans should have stayed at home and hid under their duvets as well?..
    We were a fucking disgrace today, and its not about the result. Players pulling out of tackles because they already have one eye on the world cup. Complete lethargy in our mindset, even when we went 2-1 down. There is no excuse. And then the usual suspects raced down the tunnel with their tails between their legs at full time, leaving Big Sol and Robin to applaud the away fans and at least return a modicum of respect.

  333. excuses excuses excuses..

    the PL is the most physical in the world…and has been for years..

    you’d have thought after 13 years wenger would have learned this but he is on a one man crusade to change a contact sport into a game for pansies..

    but hes on his own..nobodies listening and its costing us points and trophies…

    we have a weak side with a weak mentality and they have no pride..

  334. @ Bill. The best result for all is if the spuds get 4th and then get battered in the qualifying round.

  335. Niblet, was I talking to you? show some respect.

    I could care less what you think sir, Wenger has stated the facts that the team has lost belief.

    Dont respond to me please!

  336. @ Paul N.

    I’m sorry. I must have this place confused with a blog comments section. I will seek written permission before responding to any of your silly comments in the future.

  337. JJ, this team is not weak. This is the same team that continued to fight when most, I suspect even you, did not have any faith in the team.

    It is supporters with that negative attitudes who are the weakest link Arsenal.

  338. Niblet, back off!

  339. I am asking you not to respond because you are a direspectful individual.

  340. we can complain about the ref all we want but balckburn had a stone wall penalty denied too..

    its like bob wilson says the keepers at the club have no presence…they are chicken shit and the ref will not blow the whistle for a gk who spends the whole game complaining…

    if fabianski wanted the foul he should have charged through that crowd like a good strong no nonesense keeper does and earned it…the refs always give the benefit of the doubt to the keepers..we all know this..

    but a keeper with no presence will not get those decisions in the modern game..not if they dont attempt

    seaman would have punched sols, dunns, and sambas head off to get to that ball..not roll over in his goal..and would have still earned the freekick

    thats the difference…

  341. Somehow, at some point, a lot of people came to believe that when you barge into the keeper or block his path to the ball it’s not a foul.

    If you put Samba in front of ANY keeper and gave him licence to barge into them, they will not catch the ball enough times.

    This should be clear, but somehow it’s not.

  342. The team is devestated that they didnt win the PL, they wanted to do so much for the fans, Wenger as much as themselves after all the hardships that have befallen the team. I am sure they feel that they have let everyone down.

  343. it dont matter how you try to sugar coat it paul..the team is weak..

    we had the easiest run in and weve only won 1 game in 8..a 1-0 win over wolves..

    the squad is weak with no heart and soul or pride for that matter…as soon as we get a couple of injuries we are in the shit

    ppl take the piss out of manure for being a one man team but without cesc we are an awful side…we create nothing…

  344. What rubbish, JonJon. In the very same situation Seaman would never have gotten to the ball.

    That’d be like me claiming that that horror tackle on Ramsey wouldn’t have broken Ray Parlour’s leg.

    When Samba comes & blocks off Fabianski, and Campbell comes in between, and then Dunn barges Campbell into Fabianski knocking him off balance. Even Superman wouldn’t have caught the ball.

  345. Oh shut up JonJon you tosser.

  346. Thats extremely assumptive Paul. And if you honestly think you know anything about me from reading a few paragraphs on a blog, I would say you are suffering delusions of grandeur. I am neither disrespectful, nor do I seek solace in petty squabbles with oversensitive warriors of the web.

  347. The team is not weak, many of the supporters are. We were in it until the end but you will give them no credit, will you.. The team has shown spirit and fight but like human beings its “what have you dont for me lately” and throw everything else out the window.

    Some Arsenal fans are the worst.

  348. I concede that Sagna AND RvP started against Everton at the beginning of the season. But my point still stands. Our inability to field anything like our first team for so long has a massive draining effect. Almost as draining as reading some of the comments from some of the cunts on here.

  349. 1 loose cannon

    Regardless how many first team players we had out there we should wallop fat sam and his bullies, We are far better than them. They targeted Fabianski today that is pure bully tactics but its nothing new Fat Sam has been at it all his career its up to us to deal with their crap. A Tony Adams, a Koewn or Lehman would have cetrtainly kicked the shit out those bullies. We don’t have nasty characters, we have good honest players who wants to play propper football but in situations like today you have top show your nasty side.
    Fabianski needs a to add a bit of this to his game and he will be fine

  350. I am happily delusional Niblet, and?

    Do you think I will change to be a negative cancer like you because you say so?

  351. We should never have let Manninger go.

  352. If you have even Joe Royle stating the fact it must be obvious….

  353. muppet.

    keep the insults down fella…it must be really big and brave to chat shit behind your keybaord

    if you have nothing constructive to say to me than dont address me…

  354. A little threatening that, JonJon, don’t you think? You handy with your fists?

  355. @ Paul.

    Bwahahhahaha. I’m a negative cancer now am I?. Wow.. so belligerent. What have I done to upset you so much?. Oh, and for the record, I love Wenger and this young side, but they are not above criticism.

  356. Go and blog on Le Grove JonJon. You will feel at home on there.

  357. paul

    thats the whole point

    this team has shown no spirit and fight…

    we had the easiest run in…and we blew it…and we didnt even look like we cared…

    the game against spurs emphasises this…no spirit no fight no heart…north london derby..not bothered..title run in…not bothered…

    thats the problem..the fans want those trophies..the team doesnt…

    they are weak and not good enough…cesc holds this team together without him we are nothing

  358. No they are not Niblet and they didnt play well today, thats a no brainer.

  359. Yes, I have something constructive to say to you JonJon – fuck off.

  360. frank

    i dont think thats a football relevant question do you??

  361. Several players hold the team together…only one of them was playing today.

  362. Check your first reponse to my post Niblet and then lets talk about belligerant. Though calling you a cancer is not kool, I apologize for that.

  363. Football relevant? You setting your own rules now, JonJon?

  364. muppet i dont blog on le grove because there are too many insults thrown about and not enough opinions…

    it would be perfect for you though..you’d fit right in

  365. It’s a pity you can’t separate opinion from prejudice JonJon.

  366. JJ, when you lose confidence it is not easy. This team has had to deal with a lot and I am sure they are “devestated” that they couldnt win it for the Arsnal faithful.

    I

  367. you asked me if i was handy at throwing hands frank…

    id prefer to stick to football..no rules…

    it is a football blog after all..

    and i agree rvp is one of our key players but without rvp we can cope..without cesc on the other hand we cannot..he is our heartbeat…

  368. Paul, why waste your time. If these characters ever posted in support of the team, you could maybe accept their criticism when the team has a bad day. However, they have nothing to say when we are winning, but the moment the team hits a bad patch they can’t wait to sharpen their poison pens. Their opinions have no worth, which is why I choose to ignore them.

  369. But you only ever turn up here when you know people are feeling bad…to wind them up further, JonJon. I thought you used to write for Avenell Road…why don’t you just post on there instead of trying to get under the skin of people on here? You know why people post on here.

  370. @ Frank.

    I agree. The ref was a disgrace, but so was the lack of urgency shown once we were 2-1 down. l

  371. You are right Passenal! I am done. Lets beat Fulham!!

  372. Hello J*mes (Niblet).

  373. I suspect we missed Alex Song, Denilson, Thomas Vermaelen, William gallas, Nik Bendtner, and possibly others as well as Cesc. You need to try to hold more than one thought in your head at a time, JonJon.

  374. theres certain players paul that dont give a shit about the arsenal faithful..

    thats been obvious…thats why they get stick

    its an old football philosophy that if you play for the crowd they will support you…no matter how bad your form is if you give everything for the badge the fans will give you everything back

    its a two way street..if the players plays like he doesnt care he will not get the support..

    and there are too many players in the current setup who are only interested in collecting there wage at the end of the week

  375. @ Paul.. it was said in jest, and certainly wasnt meant to offend. I apologize if it did.

  376. I didn’t say the ref was a disgrace. Though I doubt whether those goals would have stood if Petr Cech was in goal. The second one was appalling. Not sure that any football was involved in at all.

  377. Some perspective please. Blackburn away is a tough game! Man U and Chelsea did not win there.
    We only had one first teamer in the back 5.
    I did not expect us to win and as fans of Arsenal we need to stop whinging about the tactics of other teams. Would the invincibles moaned about roughouse tactics? No, they would have fought back and given as good as they got and then beat them.
    All this moaning about other teams tactics does us no favours in the long run.

  378. no frank..ive turned up on lots of occasions..good and bad…

    you all have this ideology about ‘supporting’ the players and use it against the ‘doomers’ but i read this blog regularly and silvestre gets a right pounding on here…by all of you..

  379. The question of the Blackburn ‘penalty’ was utterly irrelevant. Their player was off-side. If you allow the penalty you have to allow the offside,Therefore the penalty didn’t happen. Bit like going back in time and killing your own grandmother before she conceived.

  380. Kool Niblet!

  381. frank

    we still had sagna, eboue, diaby, nasri, theo , rvp playing today..

    thats over half a fully fit ‘1st team’ playing a shit team like blackburn and not only did we lose but we lost without a wimper..again..

  382. Not by me he doesn’t..you just made that up, JonJon.

  383. You are trying too hard, JonJon. The point is that the spine of the team is missing. Has been for some time.

  384. 1 loose cannon

    I prefer not dwell on these last defeats. I think we will be well equipped next season. Wenger will assess the situation and add what is needed to strenghten. Chamakh if he does come will be a pain for many defenders. The teams who put men behind the ball will have a nightmare next season. you can imagine Bendtner and Chamakh upfront with RVP in behind waiting to lash into any knock downs it will be a nightmare for most defenders. I can’t wait to see a fresh looking Arsenal without any injuries.

  385. @JJ
    In fact…no! Look at the regulars here like Frank, Ole, etc. and I don’t think you will find anything reminisecent of a “regular pounding” for Silvestre.

  386. The team that played today was good enough to win the game. They did not play well enough to win.

  387. That has a massive draining effect. These guys are rock bottom and running on empty.

  388. frank i seem to remember after the wigan game you were slagging the team off…

    even diaby..you said he had nothing between his ears…

    which i agree with..

    why is it ok for you to say such things but when other ppl say it they get called all the names under the sun by muppet and the likes..????

  389. exactly, no one has really mentioned the physical demands coupled with the mental pressure on the players.

    Geez, Arsenal “supporters” are something else.

  390. Because you are an evil troll and a troublemaker JonJon.

    Anybody who needs 2 jons should be viewed with suspicion.

  391. frank

    you are missing the point..the spine of the side is missing yes but we dont have the replacements to come in and do the job becuase they dont have enough heart

    we fielded a perfectly good side against wigan and blackburn capable of taking 6 points and we got nothing becuase the players gave nothing..

  392. Our team managed to rise like phoenix from the ashes several times this season after bad setbacks. After we lost @ManU/ManC, after we lost against Chelsea, during the Stoke City game, etc.
    However now the point has been reached where our team has got nothing left to give. Considering their situation however almost all of them have made me proud for most of the season. I don’t see the point in bashing and criticizing our players now after everything is done. They need to recover from this, especially mentally, needa good pre season and then we will be on our way again..

  393. arsenehollis

    The team kicked me in the teeth today.

    This was an outrage. Where was Davis Dein?

    These players let us down totally. I dont support this team, I don’t support this club, I only support Wenger.

    Off to kill me own grannie now and save you all some more of my jaundiced hypocrisy.

  394. evil

    lol

    ole hates silvestre…even i know that..

  395. arsenehollis

    Thank you Ole, some sense at last.

    This is why we need more depth to the squad.

    The problem wasn’t the ref failing to protect our keeper, it was our players.

    Where were Campbell, Silvestre, Sagna, Diaby to shield fabianski?

    Who exactly was marking Samba for the second goal? The goalie?

  396. The game against Wigan was interesting. We had it in the bag with ten minutes to go…two goals up. We lost the game due to complacency. I posted after the game having had to watch it with my prospective eighth wife’s parents and brother-in-law. All die-hard Chelski fans. They spiked my drink with acid prior to the game. Bad trip. For several hours I thought I was a doomer. What a horrible place to be….

  397. not that i disagree with ole

  398. When I woke up the following day I realised who I was and that it had all been a bad dream. Thank goodness. I don’t know how people like JonJon and Arsenehollis cope. Being the way they are and all…how to exist with such small ratty minds?

  399. lol frank

    the point is though that is that we had the easiest run in out of the other top 2 and injuries or not we should have done better..

    we need some fresh faces in the summer becasue alot of these players dont have what it takes…

    the ability might be there but when it comes to winning a football match they dont have what it takes

    ive lost count of the amount of times this season weve taken a lead and then lost the game..

    a top side doesnt do that all that often..

  400. I think I can speak for Ole that he doesnt agree with you AH? if I am wrong tell me Ole please.

    His comment is not consistent with anything you have said at all. In fact Ole has come out against the refs today also.

  401. If your own players form a defensive shield around the keeper then they have done the opposition’s job for them. You just prevent your own keeper from getting to the ball. The whole point is that your keeper needs to be free to play the ball.

  402. There’s a hole in my fucking bucket, Dear Liza, Dear Liza….and so it goes on.

  403. arsenehollis

    Frank – so not being able to handle your acid is your excuse mate?

    At your age you should be on the case by now. Still, the good news is, maybe the eighth will last as she has something to take her mind off it.

    Anyway, keep your chin up next time son.

  404. JJ, no team wins without its spine. What you are saying is that if you take most of Chelsea top players out they would win the same. I dont believe that in the least. Lest you forget the Spurs killed them with all of their top players.

  405. arsenehollis

    Paul N you are a cunt.

    Ole can talk for himself. We may not agree on everything, but as HE said, we put out good enough to win today but didn’t turn up.

  406. Bad referee or not we have to admit we were dreadful today.
    We can go on about how Blackburn are crap and only know how to play one way, but the fact is they beat us.
    Whether Fabianski was fouled or not, and as an ex referee im not sure he was, the way he didnt know what to do to combat such tactics is worrying. He’s not the only keeper to be subjected to that sort of pressure and he wont be the last.
    On the second goal he should have run infront of Samba and not be blocked on the line, Given does this frequently to good effect.
    I know Arsene wants to give both keepers confidence and continues to back them but im afraid he seriously needs to look for a new one.
    The two of them are good shot stoppers but are not consistent and not good enough to play for Arsenal in my opinion.
    Arsene says the defence needs to be sorted, well he can start by finding us a world class keeper.
    I know it depends on one becoming available but to think back to the ones we have had in the past, it makes me wince with the ones we have now.
    Lets not get too down, we dont need major surgery but a new spine would be whats needed in my opinion, a new keeper, cb, def mid, striker which we have signed apparently.
    Im confident we can be a real force if we get these positions filled next season.

  407. Next time was Man City and today….and my chin is firmly up. You are a mean small-minded fellow, Arsenehollis.

  408. arsenehollis

    You know what you will get at Blackburn.

    We got it.

    We couldn’t deal with it.

    No point squeeling afterwards for help from the refs. It wasn’t unexpected.

    We couldn’t look after ourselves.

    Frank can’t take his acid… and so it goes on.

  409. As you have such knowledge…er veteran…(veteran of what?) which keeper would you have him buy?

  410. arsenehollis

    Frank – I may well be small minded, but mean is totally unfair.

    Take that back, it hurt my feelings.

  411. That I am Arsenhollis, but one who support the team through thick and thin.

    Thanks for the compliment.

  412. Have you ever taken LSD, arenehollis?

  413. Just didnt want you to smear Ole’s name!

  414. arsenehollis

    I support the team also Paul, but I can also admit that they have been very poor the last 6 league games and it reflects poorly on certain squad members.

    Yes Frank, I have.

  415. mean means small-minded, sraenehollis. You can’t admit to one without the other. Unless of course you are telling me that you are somehow macho and dangerous? That what you are, arsenehollis?

  416. Ever taken it unwittngly?

  417. Has anyone ever had the misfortune to read the comments on Gunnerblog? I checked it out for the first time today. Those guys make Le Grove look like Arsenal.com. Poisonous blog.

    It was so awful I had to troll it for a while this afternoon. But I ain’t never going back. Not never!

  418. AH, the team has been poor, no doubt. I, like many other think that there is more to it than “they dont care” and “thay are not good enough”

    I would never say we deserved to win but on the other hand i am not going to overlook the bad refs because of that either.

  419. paul..

    you can cope if you have a game plan and you know how to defend

    manutd have missed there best CM for the last two years and had no defenders for 8 weeks of the season and theyve still taken it to the wire because fergie breeds a never say die attitude that the players stand up to

    rios only started 10 games this year..ffs

    we just dont have the mentality.or the players to cope..

    we burn our defenders out becuase we dont have decent backup who we can trust..gallas never lasts a full season and the same happened to TV..cesc has started to pick up niggles and rvp has lasted 1 full season in 6 years..

    its not hard to see were we need to spend some money..with the history of our players we can no longer expect them to last the distance.we need reinforcemants in those areas becasue the players who come in cant stand up to be counted

    whos faults that??? whos squad is it?? whos tactics is it???

    as i said earlier wenger teaches his players its ok to throw two of the 4 trophies so the winning mentality is abit of a contradiction..there is none

    he fields a weakend side in those cups and his side gets spanked and then he expects those players to come good in the PL title charge..not hard to see why they cant..they arent good enough for FA cup or CC so why will they be good enough for PL

    jeez…

  420. I only really read comments on here if I can help it, Big Al. Occasionally read others if you guys recommend it. But not often.

  421. Not had the pleasure of gunnerblog oneofus. Thanks for the heads up.

  422. That sort of comment seems to require counselling. Can you not get that from your own blog, JonJon?

  423. 1 loose cannon

    I think Sol tried his best today and he did well the second goal he was over protective of Fabianski and in the end Fabianski was choked in the middle, But I can’t blame Sol as Fabianski was targeted by the Blackburn players all game. The referee simply failed or refused to see it, but a street wise keeper would feign injury to get the ref’s attention and possibly the Blackburn players will get a warning from him. they knew his nature and decide to take advantage, if they knew He was a nasty cheating piece of work, he would get them booked by feigning injury or simply wind them up by standing on their toes and all that shit that goes on in every game. But he is a honest lad without any malice in him, He just needs to toughen up a bit and control his area. Unlike fat Sam Wenger is not the type to tell his players to get nasty.

  424. Veteran, I don’t think anyone is pretending the team played well, but it doesn’t take away from the fact that today was yet another example of incompetent and inconsistent refereeing that we’ve seen far too many times this season and not just in Arsenal games either. Something is very rotten in the state of Denmark!

  425. When our own ‘fans’ refer to our ‘Keeper as flappy it’s obvious a Manager like Fat Sam is going to target him. Refereeing standards are inconsistent to say the least and about as reliable as some of our supporters.

  426. There is indeed a refereeing crisis.Passenal.

    Veteran, would you mind suggesting some world-class keepers who deal successfully with deliberate targetting by several players off the ball?

  427. if spuds win on wednesday we need everyone at the grove on sunday roaring on the team. if they don’t then we should boycott the game to show just how fucked off we are with the current situation.

    by the way how can xavi at barca be playing with a 3 cm tear in his calf, while our pussies are out for weeks with just a strain?

  428. It was the first comments section I’ve seen for a long time apart from ACLF.

    I just came away feeling dirty, Muppet and Frank. I’m staying clear of that one for my own sanity. There’s a weird culture of hatred towards the players and manager. It wasn’t the kind of discontent you find on Le Grove – these guys are fanatical and creepy.

    OK, that’s the very last thing I’m going to say about the place.

  429. A bad day today but as long as we finish 3rd i will be happy enough with this season.

  430. Don’t know..how can that be, phoenix? You have the information you tell us. How big are our calf strains? Smaller than 3 cms or bigger? You have the gen..come on stump up.

  431. Who measured the calf strain? Did they used a tape measure or ruler?

  432. Is that why he didn’t play too well against Inter? Is that why they failed to go through to the final? You would think that Barca had more depth in their squad wouldn’t you?

  433. Might shift beckons. Someone actually accused me of not being able to ‘take his (sic) acid’ as a form of insult. The day has ended better than I thought possible. Well, well..

  434. Might shift? Defintiely night shift.

  435. well thats what xavi said in an interview a few days ago, but he was going to finish the season, rest up and and head to the world cup hopefully.

    obviously have a different medical team to ours.

    i mean what the fuck happened this week to have song, clichy and bendtner injured when we didn’t play. fuckin laughing stock at the moment.

  436. So you should play your injured players? then we will all hear “why did Wenger risk the player”, when the injury worsens.

  437. It’s difficult to explain why we have so many injuries but there is a good interview on Arsenal.com with our physio Colin Lewin. (He is probably the one who does the measuring of calf tears at our club).

  438. JonJon,

    That’s complete tosh. Man Utd didnt miss their “entire defence for 8 weeks”.

    When Owen Hargreaves was fit, he hardly featured. Seems Feggerson doesn’t agree he’s their best midfield.

    Why do you have to dish out the Man U spin?

  439. Do you reckon those arse whistles might shift?

  440. How can anyone make comparisons with other teams. Our team, no, whole squad was decimated this season. Maybe not all season but for significant periods.
    Sometimes with a few injuries you can bring in developing players and, as long as they do what they are good at, the rest of the team help them to hold it all together. When that happens fans and the media salute the depth of the squad; but we have had periods where developing players have had to replace developing players. And lets all be honest here; kids do get bullied no matter what talent they have unless they are real prodigies like Rooney or Fabregas.
    And another thing; does anyone remember what Arsene said last summer “yes I can spend money but I also have to sell because I have a budget” My paraphrasing, I’m afraid, but that is more or less what he said. The day I read it I expected it to make the back pages or even the blogs but there was very very little recognition of it. The man has spent the last 6 years with one hand tied behind his back helping to fund the stadium. Don’t get me wrong that is not the Board’s fault because Arsene helped to develop the strategy that dictated the need for a new stadium to generate the funds to compete with the Mancs. Of course, that strategy did not foresee the coming of oligarchs and sheikhs etc.
    So where are we now? We have held on to the shirt tails of the top two while the likes of Liverpool have struggled to compete. In that time Benetez has bought 70 players; can you believe that? We have a good young squad and and excellent Academy that is feeding players through to the first team squad. We also have a number of players who need to justify Arsene’s faith in them and I am sure most will. Arsene probably also sees that there are weaknesses and he will strengthen where he can. What he still can’t do is compete with the Mancs, Chavs and Citeh or anybody else who is backed by mega bucks trying to build success. Nevertheless, he says they can’t buy all the good players!
    Really, all I am saying is, if you demand success every year change the club you support like a primary school child and support whoever is winning at the time.
    Me, I’ve cried in Paris(thank you Naim), been attacked in Copenhagen and Wolverhampton (of all places) got angry after defeats in Paris, again, and Cardiff. However, I also saw the Bergkamp hat-trick at Leicester so that tips the balance for me.
    Supporting my team is about dreaming of success, wishing and hoping!

    One more point and that is exactly what I will be doing all summer!

    Thats enough

  441. And no, I don’t know how he measures them.

  442. Brilliant number 10. Just brilliant.

  443. measured by ultra scan. very simple

  444. Paul N, that’s exactly what they said after we lost Gallas, Arshavin and Cesc in one game. They even accused Arsene of playing Cesc with a broken leg!

    OOU – never go to that place again. I used to go there a few years ago, but I left when I started to see the direction it was taking and the blog owner just did not care that the comment section was so appalling. That respects highbury character that Barry was quoting earlier, was the ring leader of a particularly nasty strain of posters. Since I found ACLF, I don’t often bother with other blogs and only very occasionally post elsewhere.

  445. Tape measure is simpler surely, and more accurate.

  446. Apparently Arshavin got stick from the travelling gooners after the game. By one account he went to clap the fans and got stick in return.

  447. Matty Boy,

    Pearls before swine; Frank tried to point them to that interview a couple of days ago but they are nor interseted in the facts. Instead,they blame the training and, of course we all know whose fault that is!

  448. The players have let us down in the last 3 games. April/May 2010 has been like November 2008. It just happened late in the season this time.

    We have a team punching below its weight that’s being derided as punching above its weight.

  449. That’s interesting Ole, where did you hear that? It doesn’t surprise me a great deal but perhaps if we had won the game their reaction would have been different.

  450. interested even

  451. That is surprising OG, I thought he was so popular he could get away with anything.

    Number 10, you sound like a proper supporter not a closet manure fan like jj, who seems to know more about their team than the one he claims to ‘support’!

  452. Matty Boy….heard it from Twitter…but as yet unconfirmed by more than that one person:

  453. Excellent comment @ 10:53, Number10

  454. The life has gone from the team. They need the summer to revivify themselves. So do the fans. I think the World Cup will do them and us a lot of good. It has been a disappointing end to the season, but we will see it differently in a couple of months.

  455. We are all hurting at the moment but why take it out on the manager and the team?
    I am afraid there is a core of people who really do miss boring boring Arsenal. I was at Highbury when we went out of the Champions League against Chelsea and there were some very unpleasant reactions from people who sounded like they supported the BNP!
    I still remember one gents comments. He was sixty-ish (don’t care if that is ageist;I highlight it on purpose).
    “Its time to get rid of the Frenchman; get some English grit into this club” There was much more than that but you get the drift.
    He and all others had completely forgotten our famous back five being taken apart by the Barca Kluivert at Wembley, and also the Shevchenko Kiev. The Arsenal players came off the pitch afetr Kiev and were convinced the Ukrainians were doped so fit were they (and yes that is a quote from inside the dressing room);it couldn’t be our fault could it?
    Unfortunately, I was not in Copenhagen the night we won against Parma and Keown was a rash on Zola’s back but I acknowledgethat only the old Arsenal could win like that. However, I do not want to see that approach to football ever again.
    Sorry, but I love seeing these players of all nationalities playing with skill and pace and heart. Yes! They do have heart and they have Arsenal in their heart. None more so than RvP and Cesc

  456. Thanks Ole.

    number10 – The pearls before swine analogy is an appropriate one.

    My feeling is that when Arsenal have won titles and especially doubles i have felt privileged to witness such events. My Dad witnessed one in ’71 and I have been lucky enough to have seen 2 already! If we never do it again i have unforgettable memories. Of course I want us to win things every year but I don’t expect or demand it. As an Arsenal fan I experience amazing highs and desperate lows but my passion and support doesn’t waver, it couldn’t even if I wanted it to!

  457. Passenal i agree we perhaps dont get the decisions going our way in these sort of games, especially up north, but we have to accept that we are much better than teams like Blackburn, and the only way they know to beat us is to play to our weaknesses.
    The sooner we can get some physical presence in the team to counter this the better.
    Would we have been bullied the way we were today with Patrick V in the team, i dont think so, having said that there are not too many like him around who are available.
    Frank as stated im not sure one is going to be available but Man City are going to have two keepers next season perhaps not world class but in my opinion both better than ours.
    Whether they can keep Given and Hart happy remains to be seen, if they dont i would not mind either of those two at the club.

  458. Matty Boy,

    There should be a place in the ground where people like us can surreptitously congregate and drink beer. Just knowing what we are.
    Frank can come up with a plan I am sure; do you remember the dancing up and down the stairs idea?
    Over to you Frank!

  459. I think that place has gone number10, it was called Highbury.

    I joke of course but I hardly ever buy the overpriced, plastic cupped beer at the Emir*tes. I usually have a couple before and a few after depending on the result! What an absolute joy and please it is to watch your team play live, makes you wonder why some people are so bloody miserable and pessimistic.

  460. Number 10 you’re welcome here anytime, your perspective is a breathe of fresh air. That chap you mention sounds an awful lot like Howard. Unfortunately I think there is an unsavoury element within our support who resent the ‘foreign’ Arsenal tag. But they seem to forget our club was started by Scottish munitions workers and how many Irish players we have had in the past. Nationality of players should be irrelevant for a club side as long as they play for the shirt, their birthplace is neither here nor there. International football is the only place where it matters. Perhaps if it means that much to them they should stop supporting Arsenal and just support the national team, that way they will be guaranteed the right nationality to suit their tastes.

  461. One final point.
    Allardyce showed a complete lack of class the way he assasinated Fabianski in his post match interview.
    Even old red nose would not have done that. He would have praised his own team rather than say he was aware of the players weaknesses; that is so unprofessional
    Night all

  462. I agree with you completely Passenal.

    Matt, isn’t that sad.

  463. Veteran, none of us watch the opposition as closely as we watch and pour over every mistake of our own. Remember Scott Carson and Ben Foster? Weren’t they were the bright young goal keeping hopes of a couple of seasons ago? Hart has had a run in a lesser team, whereas Fabianski has barely played this season lets see if the former can do it when the pressure is on and if the latter improves with a run of games with a settled defence in front of him.

  464. I said earlier, when our own fans refer to our ‘keeper as Flappy it’s obvious that Fat Sam was going to single him out. His brand of anti football is exactly why the EPL will never be better than the Spanish league. And exactly why Fat Sam will never be considered to Manage a top team. That along with the fact that he is a complete moron.

  465. Muppet, your name seems consistent with the rubbish you spout. I am fed up of you calling me James every time I (rarely) post in the comments section. Give it a rest. The paranoia will kill you.

    @Frank… I know you didnt say the ref was a disgrace, I added that myself, and my post wasnt very clear. I meant that I agree with you about the ‘spine’ of the team. Vermaelen,Song,Cesc,RVP, are for me, the spine of the team. IF we could just add a solidly reliable keeper to that mix, we would be a lot better off.

    Sidenote: Sometimes people take stuff on here too seriously. I think as you get older, you gain perspective with regards The Arsenal. Thats not to belittle any of our younger fans god forbid. I just know that passionately following the club does not mean that you can’t take everything with a pinch of salt, especially when you have seen far worse times.

    61 Never Again

  466. Yes I know I am the last to post but YW if you read this please mention tomorrow that if this is the way to beat Arsenal, and stifle what in England is the most open team in the league, and as 99% of neutrals say the most entertaining team, then where does the league go?

    Obviously I am a Gooner. But if the goal of your team is to not lose, then having 38 points at the end of the season is great.

    I want to see football played at its best. Yes we lost to Blackburn, but we where the only team trying to play football. Yes they can gloat but at the end of the day who do you want to watch? Every neutral will say Arsenal and Blackburn can watch themselves. On BBC’s live text they mentioned how 2 BB fans were asleep during the game but they seemed to have woken up after they scored the equaliser….and they called our home the library!!!

  467. The idea that Szczesny played for Legia Warsaw at age 15 is a myth. There’s no mention of it anywhere in any Polish news articles or databases. His previous goalkeeping coach talked about letting him take part in a training camp with the first team at that age but he makes no mention of letting him play in a match.

  468. I agree with 1number10, Mattyboy, Passenal and irishgray…great comments.

  469. Oops sorry I have confused number10 with 1number10. Anyway you are a star, number10.

  470. I would say that on the evidence of this season that ‘football’ in the North is regressing. Chuck the ball in to a big fucker in the box has morphed into big fuckerS in the box. Kick the opposition at every opportunity. Park eleven men behind the ball. referees and the establishment appear to support this approach. So do many Arsenal supporters.

  471. Sad but true Frank. It seems like many would be happy if our team resembled blackburn as long as we win by any means necessary. How long do they think we would keep filling the emirates? Judging by the number of empty seats at yesterday’s game, not long I would say. But if that is the kind of football and mid table mediocrity with the occasional ‘big team’ scalp they want, there are plenty of proponents of that style out there they could follow. Why try to change our team into that? That would just be a return to the dark ages. And what the PL establishment ought to realise is that it is teams like Arsenal that attract the global audience, not the likes of the hoofers and cloggers. If they want the goose to keep laying the golden eggs, they ought to try protecting it from the foxes for a change.

  472. To cheer you up, Passenal

  473. What we need is our first XI fit on a more regular basis to destroy anti-football before it takes a further hold on the game. Roll on next season.

  474. I agree with Passenal

  475. Dear Mr Wenger

    You are suppossed to be a top manager yet you would now a good goalkeeper they hit you are the head.

    Flaapy aintski is shit at crosses and Blackburn knew it.

    Almunia and Flappy are the worst keepers in Arsenals history

  476. Passenal your 8.27 should be tattooed onto the foreheads of every FA employee and Board member.

    Spot on. The FA seem either determeined to reduce our great game to the level of the WWF or are absolutely ignorant of the danger of that happenning by default.

    They are a disgrace.

    That’s to make no excuses for yesterday’s defeat by the way. Ole was right, we had a side out that was good enough to win.

    And you, larry, can just fuck right off.

  477. Blame Injuries
    Blame The Pitch
    Blame The Ref
    Blame it on the Boogie

    But dont blame the clown who is managing our great club

  478. 2-1 down

    So what our our tactics? Sideways Sideways,Sideways……Lose the ball

    Pass Pass Pass………..Give the ball away

    Any chance of getting the ball into the box any chance of a shot?

  479. Passenal: What we need is our first XI fit on a more regular basis to destroy anti-football before it takes a further hold on the game. Roll on next season.

    How in god’s name are we supposed to make that happen? What these last few seasons show is that, our first 11(whatever that is) is pretty much guaranteed never gets a good run of games playing together. Teams are going to be tackling us even harder next season and the injuries will only increase. The will do it because it works for them, and we all know the refs won’t stop them.

  480. ‘We constantly consciously and unconsciously make judgments about other people. Our basis for judging others may be partly ingrained, negative and rigid indicating some degree of grandiosity.

    Blaming is also a way of devaluing others. The end result is that the blamer feels superior. Others are seen as less worthwhile making the blamer “perfect”. Off-loading blame means putting the other person down by emphasizing his or her flaws.’

    The Destructive Narcissistic Pattern

  481. The FA and refs will allow the death of proper football in the premiership and there is nothing AW or arsenal can do about it.

    Complaining about it will certainly not make it go away. The bullying will only get worse. Its a terrible situation

  482. That said, I agree that we should still have won the game with the team we had out. Injuries, the devastating loss to Barca, or our dropping out of the title race are not excuses.

  483. I enjoyed that video of Lehmann that someone posted yesterday. That is the way to deal with the kind of scum that play for Blackburn. It’s okay to complain, but it has to be accompanied by brutal action on the pitch. The first thing I’d like to see is the goalkeeper missing the ball when he punches and instead catching strikers like Samba in the face. If the striker goes down, it would be a good idea for the goalkeeper to land on him with his knees – just to let him know he’s there.

  484. wait a minute..hold your horses..

    the PL is actually less physical than what it was years ago…no longer are two footed tackles studs up or tackles from behind accepted…shit you cant even shoulder charge ppl anymore…

    so stop with the excuses already

    the truth is that we have a set of pansies who cant mix it because they have no backbone..i cant remember the last time we won a 50-50…

    wengers teams of the past were not only skillfull but they were physical..if the other team wanted a war we would kick them off the pitch first and once the midfield was won we’d then play them off it..

    this team just complains about everything..making us easier targets cos the teams know we dont like it so they do it even more…if we learned how to tackle back it would help…

    what weve got to remember is that teams are not going to roll over and die and let us play wengerball…its just not going to happen…we need to earnn the right to play wenger ball first which means getting stuck in, closing teams down and showing abit of steel…

    which we dont have…so we can blame the refs and the other teams managers all we want but the truth is we have a set of pansies who cant get stuck in and run behind excuses every time..

  485. Lol Poliz.
    If our GK did even half of that, he’ll probably get a straight red and a 10 game ban after days of constant replay of the incident in skysports

  486. can you imagine paddy or petit putting up with the shit we get now…

    hahahaha

    if dunn would of tried that little trick yesterday against those lads he would have ended up in row z…samba with him…

    vieira used to go on a one man rampage kicking the crap out of everyone if they even looked at him funny…

    these lot just spend all day falling over and crying to the ref…

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