Tottenham Crushed By The Wheels Of Arsenal Industry

Carling Cup 3rd Round
Tottenham Hotspur 1 – 4 Arsenal

0 – 1 Lansbury (15)
1 – 1 Keane (49)
1 – 2 Nasri (91 pen)
1 – 3 Nasri (95 pen)
1 – 4 Arshavin (105)

A team which highlighted the depth of Arsenal’s squad and their current injury woes, wiped the memory of the 5 – 1 debacle in this competition three seasons ago.  Jack Wilshere dominated the midfield as Arsenal took the breath from the  tie, consigned it to the footballing mortuary, only for poor officiating to give it the kiss of life before eventually killing off the futile Tottenham resistance in extra time.

The visitors were utterly dominant, save from a fifteen minute spell in the second half. For decades, Tottenham prided themselves on the memories of Bill Nicholson and Arthur Rowe, push and run their mantra, playing football ‘the proper way’. Last night they received an object lesson in how football really should be played, chasing shadows and spending considerable amounts of time without possession.

Wenger surprised with a strong line-up which despite showing eight changes from the weekend, would still be more than a match for most of the Premier League. Eschewing his usual policy of fielding reserves and youth with a smattering of experience, Wenger noted post-match that it was important to maintain the momentum of the early season. So he fielded a team which was reserves and youth with a smattering of experience.

It was little surprise when Henri Lansbury broke the deadlock before the quarter hour mark passed. Arsenal’s midfield were dominant, neat crisp passes had stretched the Tottenham defence and the pressure was beginning to show, not just on their manager’s face. Eboue played the ball wide, despite slipping the pass was accurate, where Gibbs and Nasri’s neat interchange found Wilshere on the left, rifling a cross into the path of the unmarked Lansbury, sliding in to break his Arsenal duck and allow the home fans a clear view of the first of four Arsenal goals in front of them and the gap between the two clubs widening.

Chances were exchanged, Bentley would miss when scoring seemed an easier option, a feat he repeated in extra time, proving just how much of a meal he has dined out on with one goal. Gibbs was wrongly adjudged offside as the Tottenham defence were carved open, not the first nor sadly the last, decision the linesman would get wrong. Early in the second half, those errors would prove costly for Arsenal.

Djourou stepped up and played Keane offside, quite clearly to everyone except the linesman who carried his nightmare first half into the second. The Irishman needed little invitation to shoot but even he would have expected a stronger hand from Fabianski, the deflection too weak to push it wide. The Pole did not have that much to do during the course of the evening, making some good stops – solid with Bentley’s free kick, quick to react to Keane following Nasri’s goalline clearance. But he did not change anyone’s mind either, seemingly not Wenger’s at least, on a day when his compatriot’s toys went hurtling out of his pram.

Keane would later be flagged offside as he hit the post, a tighter decision than the goal yet the official was able to get that right, highlighting the infuriating inconsistencies of officials. Denilson and Eboue would both go close as Arsenal re-asserted themselves whilst Koscielny and Djourou closed down Pavlyuchenko and Keane. The game’s inexorable march into extra time could not be halted but by the interval, it would be over.

Nasri tumbled under the slightest of tugs – nothing wrong with that as the Tottenham defender impeded his run onto Arshavin’s pass. The Frenchman sent Michael Stipe the wrong way. He would repeat the feat a few minutes later as Chamakh tumbled under another shirt pull. To seal the victory, Arshavin and Denilson took a quick free kick following the Russian’s tumble, a rifling shot into the bottom corner compounding Redknapp’s despair at the events of the evening.

Rightly, Jack Wilshere is finding praise heaped on his young shoulders. He passed every examination, positionally, passing and tactically. Crucially, his temperament was tested as Tottenham’s midfield rotated their fouling of the youngsters; Wilshere to his credit resisted the temptation to rise to the bait. Partnering Wilshere, Lansbury looked solid although unsurprisingly tired towards the end. In a team such as the one fielded last night, he would have learned more than possible with the usual Carling Cup team.

Elsewhere, Keiran Gibbs enhanced his reputation by shackling Aaron Lennon in the second half. Prior to that, Gibbs added attacking sensibilities to his armoury, providing a consistent outlet on the left. Gael Clichy will feel some sorrow that the youngster may have broken the second metatarsal but possibly some inward relief that the real threat to his position has found his progress temporarily halted. Laurent Kosicelny once more was outstanding and is looking every inch another Wenger gem.

As was pointed out to me recently by a Tottenham fan; the 5 – 1 result is the only thing the record books show, not that it was a weakened Arsenal team who provided the opposition. Frighteningly for them, a weakened Arsenal team steamrollered into the next round of the Carling Cup.

‘Til Tomorrow.

Posted on September 22, 2010, in Arsenal, Carling Cup, Football, Premier League, Premiership, Soccer and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 397 Comments.

  1. First.. and THis time I read the post

  2. Good review YW. Fabianski could have done his reputation with the Arsenal fans some good if he had saved Keane’s offside effort. Unfortunately he seems to have just reinforced the feelings that he is not up to Arsenal standard.

  3. Cheers to ATVO for including the young Spud crying in the highlights!!! That’s ruthless, just like the squad has been most times this season when leading. Nice work Arsenal!

  4. Laurent Koscielny is rapidly becoming one of those players you can’t ignore. An Arsenal legend in the making. Fence sitters took the easy and spineless “let’s wait and see option”, with the only rationale for their creeping doubts about him being that – well, they didn’t know him or he didn’t come from the right side of the rail tracks.

    For me, it’s not about who is the first choice CB pairing, it’s the fact that between Koscielny, Vermaelen, Squallaci and Djourou – and then if you take the second tier of Nordveit, Bartley, and Miquel – Arsenal has a ridiculous dearth of solidity for our central defensive options for years to come.

    Except for Sasquatch who is 30, none of our key defenders in this area are over 25 giving them at least 8 years of playing time together.

    As someone said last night, with Koscielny’s performance, Djourou could have pulled out a cigar last night.

    As for the game last night, what was it they say – “The cannon will always mueller the cock”.

  5. The little sprog having a cry reminded me of the Leeds kid when Leeds were relegated. Let’s hope that kid is crying when sperz are bankrupted by the master ‘wheeler dealer’ soon.

  6. Advocate we still dont take it seriously but this was spurs and order had to be restored!!!No way we were going to let them make more dvds at our expense.

  7. Where the hell is Van Der Faart. Get out here and spew the crap you were spewing yesterday….damn punk!

  8. I have to say firstly that Fabianski should have saved the Keane shot. Apart from that though he done well on all crosses, corners, and saved a crucial chance at the death.

    He done well. Compare that to Schwarzer…

    Aussie keeper Mark Schwarzer was at fault for both goals, failing to deal with a right-wing corner swung beyond the far post by Matthew Etherington for Higginbotham to power in his header.

    Schwarzer boobed again after 78 minutes, flapping at sub Rory Delap’s long throw to allow Jones to net for a third time in a row.

    So like I always say, the grass is not always greener on the other side. Fabianski has the ability but needs the confidence to save his career. Leave the nasty little comments aside. Hes an Arsenal keeper.

  9. Arsenal the pride of North London, always have been and always will be.

    It is funny pre-match how deluded the Spurs fans have become. Arry Redknapp always seems to do a great job of letting fans down!

    Had the radio on while I was going to the pub, all I could hear is “our youngsters have been getting rave reviews”.. “everyone wants our kids”.. all of a sudden Spurs are trying to play kids in the Carling Cup, a trophy they should be dreaming of winning. This coming after years of saying Arsenal disrespect the competition!!!

    Arry has got it all wrong, his Nasri dive claim was wrong, his youngsters ain’t good enough, and it should have been 6 or 7 if it wasn’t for a sympathetic bunch of officials who made it more of a game.

    Spurs muppets and big mouths, go back into hiding, keep quiet and save the embrassment, because when we meet you in the league, it won’t be such a generous scoreline! 🙂

  10. To be fair, shot stopping was never much of an issue for our keepers, it was more dealing with corners and crosses. I’m not going to lambast Fab for the goal, cause he probably knows he could have got down a bit quicker. He dealt with everything else just fine.

    Besides I’m grateful for the goal because without that the match probably wouldn’t have gone to extra time, we probably wouldn’t have scored 3 more, & we wouldn’t have see when spuds cry (Maybe he’s just like his father…)

    Kos is making me far too optimistic for the Chelsea game! I’m talking 7-0 to the Arsenal. Somebody slap me

  11. ChrisGooner – unfortunately what will go unnoticed is that regardless of how strong our team was, it was in effect an illustration of our strength and depth, something we have always been accused of not having.

    Consider that there is an alternative team in:

    Almunia, Sagna, Squallaci, Vermaelen, Song, Diaby, Fabregas, Van Persie, Bendtner, Ramsey, JET, Frimpong, Nordveit, Eastmond, Le Coq, Miquel, Sunu, Barazite – and I don’t know how many other players itching to wear the Arsenal shirt.

    ‘Appy ‘Arry doesn’t know what he’s talking about when Tottenham don’t even have a reserve team. At some point, people will have to stand up and count the work that Arsenal has done with building a team from the ground up as opposed to “buying” a team for short term gain.

  12. Almunia, Sagna, Squillaci, Vermaelen, Song, Diaby, Fabregas, Ramsey, Walcott, Bendtner and RVP. That’s a list of some of our players who didn’t play yesterday. Looks like a first eleven to me. The debt of the squad is amazing! We finally appear to have a squad that will dominate for a few years to come!

  13. Darius you seem to be telepathic. Same idea in our posts, only that yours is more thorough – and a minute earlier!

  14. @Kenyan Gunner – a few years????

    What the hell are you on about – more like a decade….and there’s more coming through the ranks.

  15. Mr Furious Styles

    Please do explain darius; how is “lets wait and see” with regards to koscielny’s performances in the PL in any way or form spineless? It’s just a normal way of going about things, isnt it?

    He was obviously a big talent, without much experience with top flight football, and none in the PL. And many, myself included, wanted to see him play a bit before they passed any judgement on him. So far I’m very impressed.

    That’s spineless?

  16. Easy Darius. Okay a few decades to come.

  17. “Eschewing his usual policy of fielding reserves and youth with a smattering of experience, Wenger… fielded a team which was reserves and youth with a smattering of experience.”

    Genius!

  18. What’s Koscielny’s perfect one touch passing out of defence whilst under pressure all about?

    It’s madness I tell ya.

    As a defensive unit we have improved by a lot on last season.

  19. Great result – do you know where we can get the DVD?

    Some thoughts:

    I really,really like Koscielny. I have been hugely impressed with him – his timing and ability to find a teammate with a pass or header is uncanny. He reminds me of Laurent Blanc. Early days yet but he looks like the real deal to me.

    In Wilshere have we found Cesc’s successor? Again early, early days but Jack is looking great.

    I worry about the keepers. Its not the first time Woocash has let in a goal like that (Chelsea in the Cup semi springs to mind). I think he has weak wrists – he gets to the ball but can’t keep it out. Other than that I thought he had a decent game but he makes too many mistakes. I hope that he can iron this out of his game.

    Arshavin looked good in luxury player mode. Bring him on for 20-30mins to win you the game or to put the icing on the cake if you are winning. Try to get 90 mins out of him and he struggles.

    How bad was the linesman – Gibbs onside, Keane way offside? I got these decisions right and I was watching on a crappy stream! The lino should never be in a top flight game again – he was in line so there is no excuse.

    How many fouls on Jack? It was disgrace how Sperz used the Argentinian trick of getting alternate players to kick him thus spreading the yellow cards around the team and avoiding a red.

    We shut those cnuts up after last time which is sweet!

  20. You was lucky

  21. Gadget, ile slap ya, but only if you slap me back, nothing wrong with bigging us up me old pal, . Glen Hoddle ?????? why??????
    I know that people take a side and defend it, usualy with a good argument but not Glen, no. Even at the end of coverage he says, they had more experience this time, no glen these are some of the young ones but they are older. he says, they have won nothing in past 5 year, . thats true but this is the culmination of those 5 years, 5 years in which we had to be humble at times, but that humility easier to swallow for those who saw the vision. Man city with all their billions aim to be top within two three year. I think this is it guys, our time is here, i pray to my God that we stay clear of the injuries which cause so many to think we are not up to it, cause we are, wnger said it last night, the thing he likes the most is our consistancy in the play we play and battle. One note on the GK. I like him but something isnt right, even the result wont do much for his confidence, maybe a loan, i dont claim to know the answer. Anyone know when the next round is, wow im excited about the carling cup.

  22. Spuds well and truly French Fried,

    As for that weeping little chip off the old……

    oh never mind

    4_1!!!!!

  23. You done us last night, fairplay. Bentley was shocking and I thought Kyle Naughton was gonna start crying when the 4th goal went in, he had an absolute nightmare.

  24. No James, you were lucky it wasnt more.

  25. boomer, I know, we were awfull. Wiltshire is a great player, I hope the press dont hype him up to much and ruin him cos we need him for future World Cups

  26. On another note, interesting to see Hughes getting outraged at a Stoke player recklessly taking out Dembele.

    Is this the same Hughes who took pride in employing thugs at Blackburn to do the same thing against Arsenal, in particular RVP?

    This from Robbie Savage (courtesy of anotherarsenalblog)

    “Mark Hughes used to say, when we used to play against teams that were technically better than us, he used to say ‘stop them’, ‘be aggressive against them in whichever way you can be, be aggressive…When we played against teams like Arsenal we used to kick them off the park”

  27. Spud kid (Spid?) crying… His parents’ fault, should’ve brought him up a Gooner. But delectable, wasn’t that match, nothing ‘Arry can say will make the slightest difference to the fact that we destroyed his team. Not that he’s not been trying, racked up quite a few excuses already, makes you think he probably had em written out in advance. Wilshere’s composure is remarkable. Djourou, still has ‘coming back from long layoff’ written all over him, but seems ti be getting back in form. Nasri, Rosicky, Eboue, expected nothing less. Gibbs – I really hope the lad is not too terribly hurt. Kos was solidity personified. Lansbury impressed – soon be a regular on our subs bench at least, I would say. Arshavin – some lovely touches, some disinterested trotting, but that goal was clever and opportunistic, something I’d like to see more of. Chamakh keeps impressing with his work ethic. Vela, sadly, didn’t seem to have much to do, but didn’t do much wrong, either. Denilson, too, was solid and I love the understanding he and Nasri seem to have. Fabianski… Was better than expected, he has potential, I’m sure, but I wish he would spend a season on loan and make his mistakes elsewhere, then come back to us and realise the potential.

    Chris, I’m glad to see we’re not gloating at all. 😛 Dignified victors, that’s what we are.

  28. Nice post, ACLF . . . just missed that it was a Wilshere free kick that played in AA23.

  29. Almunia
    Sagna Squilaci Vermaelen Clichy
    Eastmond Diaby Aneke
    Arshavin JET
    Chamakh

    Alternate 11

    Unfit: Fabrigas, Ramsey, Walcott, Bentner, RVP, Norveit, Frimpong

    We struggle on squad depth, so they say!!

    No mention of Denilson today. I thought he kept things together for the others to show off.

    There was a clear penalty for a push on Henri seconds after the ref had given a tame free kick against Djourou for the same thing. Again in front of that lino, who also flagged young Jack when he looked level to the biased me.

    Keep the focus, we showed in this match, against all comers & we are going places.

  30. It wasn’t the scoreline, it was the type/level of domination that told a story. Lennon and Keane made little impact overall. This was a good Arsenal side, but hardly first team. Missing = Almunia, Sagna, Clichy, Vermaelen/Skilly, Diaby, Song, Cesc, Walcott, RvP plus Arsh and Cham for 71 mins +/- the current ‘A’ squad.

    Denilson is looking very good though. The odd lapse but overall outstanding with JW.

    Arsenal went forward with purpose, Spurs had some good attacking players on the field, and harrassed well in midfield, but little system.

    A nice evening really. I pitied the young lad.

  31. Fabianski is not good enough to play for Arsenal.The mistakes just keep coming with him.Every game he plays he fucks up.The book should now be closed on his Arsenal career

    Wilshire is the real deal.The heir to Cesc’s crown

    What a shame Gibbs is now injured he showed again last night he should be our number 1 LB now Clichy has no competition

  32. Denilson was exceptional, I know jack has been given all the praise (which he deserves), but Denilson mopped everything up.

    Vela had a good game I thought, he linked up the play brilliantly, but never got given a clear chance on goal I don’t think. A bit like Van Persie in his early lone CF days!

    Nasri was also very good, never made a mistake, never gave the ball away. Spurs couldn’t handle him. The 2 penalties were rightly given.

  33. ‘arry looked completely crestfallen as 30 thousand spurs fans exited and his team gave up.

    The Spurs team didn’t look fit enough. They really fell apart (and down a lot) in extra time.

    At one point I swear I could ‘read’ Nasri’slips saying to the ref ‘they are suffering from cramp, let’s finish please’.

    Now Nasri, if Keane could learn, has a good after goal celebration. It’s called “my limbs have gone all loose and my tongue is wagging too”.

  34. Szczesny has to be the number 2 keeper to Almunia NOW.I have had enough of Fabianski’s party trick of making a mistake that costs us a goal every game he plays.He’s just useless

  35. Who steps in as the backup left back now that Gibbs is out ? Traore come back!!

  36. 24-5 in 7 games so far this season btw.

  37. CG

    I thought Denilson was our weakest midfielder.He did ok but not a patch on JW(MOTM) Nasri and Rosicky who ran the show

    Kos was brilliant as was Gibbs.Djourou looked rusty

    Our weakest player by miles was Vela.He looked lost

  38. Furious Styles on September 22, 2010
    at 9:58 am

    1. Koscielny had already got rave reviews from his performances in the French first division – his class was already there to see.
    2. His meteoric rise is not luck – it’s a sign of maturity and growth at an ideal age – he might not have grown in stature before, because his time was not right, but those who mattered noticed enough to help fastrack his career.
    3. I believe in the thorough work that the Arsenal scouts do over a considerable period of time – as evidenced by the signings of Rosicky, Sagna, Nasri, Vermaelen, Chamakh et al.

    Put all those together and it’s a reasonable argument to have faith that Arsenal know what they’re doing by signing Koscielny as a key member of our defensive team. They haven’t signed him on the proviso that he has a few games so that they judge how well he will do – they’ve signed him because they believe in him, period.

    Fence sitting and spineless for me is about taking a cliched attitude of – let’s see him in a few games then make a judgement – a supporters equivalent of buying yourself a get out of jail free card if and when things go pear shaped.

    Back your team to the hilt – as long as a player puts on an Arsenal shirt, that’s my philosophy. I work on the basis that someone has already done their job to ensure that Koscielny is already good enough for us.

  39. Mark Hughes must be under fire today, having commited the unpardonable sin of complaining about a poor tackle on his player.

  40. Mr Furious Styles

    So you’re saying I’m spineless because I didnt consider him as a success before he’d played a single game in England. Got it.

    I suppose we’ve got seriously different outlook on things cause I can’t for one bit wrap my head around that piece of logic.

  41. Ole

    Lets see if Sam Alardyce and Pulis come out and slam poor Mark Hughes comments…

    One thing is for sure, if he was French they would be already at him!

  42. CSG

    It is a team game made of many elements.

    Denilson was the catalyst, who allowed the others to play. So with that in mind he did actually “run the show”!!

  43. ZimPaul
    and what did you make of his first celebration? Kissing the badge repeatedly. We need player who loves the club and will not goi away at the first sight of a big transfer. Nasri has already played at his boyhood club, captaining them and being something of an icon (at Marseille) so we can hope this badge kissing will mean he is there for a very long time.

    Ohterwise good game, always a pleasure to humiliate the spuds! Wilshere had a great game and has impressed me so much I did not expect him to be in the first team so regularly yet. I hope gibbs did not fracture his foot again and that he will be available again soon!

    Loved the chants Shall we make a DVD, just priceless! I guess they will have second thought before producing another DVD on a fluke win against the mighty Arsenal!

    Come on you Gunners!

  44. Denilson was absolutely outstanding.

  45. Feel some pity for Bruce and Sunderland. He says they got knocked out because their game against us supped their energy.

  46. OG – Mark Hughes is quoted as saying …

    “When you are at that stage of the game and your team is leading 2-0, there is a certain code, I would suggest, that you look after your fellow professional, and the lad has ignored that.

    “There was no need for the challenge at that late stage in the game and he has put a fellow professional’s career at risk by the nature of it. I don’t know what the hell he was thinking about to be perfectly honest.”

    One can only surmise that Mr Hughes thinks a career threatening challenge is ok at other stages of a game. Is there a twat school that some of these managers attend before appointment?

  47. Furious Styles.

    It’s only my opinion – and I’m more than happy for it to be debated or challenged. There’s no right or wrong with some conversations – and in between the extremes of the overly optimistic and the extremely pessimistic, there’s a lot of wiggle room.

    I didn’t say that you’re spineless, I said that there’s many spineless Arsenal supporters who like they did with Vermaelen, pre-judged Koscielny on the basis that he didn’t pass their grade for an experienced CB.

    It’s up to you to interpret where you fall in that assessment I’ve made – and even after you do that, it’s OK with me. I was only expressing an opinion and I respect your view and position in the same way I expect you to respect mine.

    It doesn’t change the fact that we’re both passionate about the Arsenal even though we might see some things differently.

  48. Mr Furious Styles

    The ppint is, don’t be so quick to judge a player and support. Many Fans only care about the popularity of a players name and transfer fee. Whereas take Dennis Bergkamp for example, took him I believe 10 games was it to score his 1st goal and ended up being arguably our greatest ever player.

    Our scouting system ensures we only bring in a player that is technically and mentally able to play for Arsenal, so we need to show the patience and support to back our team.

    We play a massive part in our club’s drive to winning a trophy. The 2nd string going to Shite Hart Lane shows off our wealth of options. Many Wenger’s signings that have been criticised played amazingly yesterday and on many occasions before… Denilson, Djourou, Vela… all having their critics for various reasons. Many went as far as saying to sell Vela before the WC !!??!!!!!

    Lets just support, and in future when things don’t look so bright its ok to discuss them but not conclude; so and so has to go, so and so is shit etc…

  49. Best wallpaper on arsenal.com for a long time.

  50. I heard Nasri speaking fluent English for the first time on the Sky Sports post match interview….

    He came across as a very cheeky but equally serious chappy. You can see that he has a nasty streak to him ala his antics against Hull last season. He’s very well spoken…

    Ian Stone on the ‘It’s all up for grabs now’ podcast described Nasri as the sort of bad boy who would snap your car arial off on his way past your car if you piss him off.

  51. GLuc I saw Nasri celebrating the Arsenal badge after the first goal, no mistake there, no doubt, no room for anything but … “I AM ARSENAL”.

    Whoever says Denilson or Vela was ‘weak’ yesterday is not really talking football are they?
    But for Vela a new role really, starting, centre and a learning curve. He worked hard. Very little happened however without Denilson in the mix.

  52. squark

    That would be Vermaelen.

    YW

  53. Mr Furious Styles

    Darius, CG

    I think you are mistaking me for someone who actually judged Koscielny before I’d seen him play a bit for us. Which I’ve clearly stated that I did not do.

    I wanted to wait and see him play before I formed an opinion about the guy. I call that a fence sitter. Unless I’m misreading your post at 9:19 Darius, you equated fence sitters with spineless fans.

    Sure, if a guy is brought to the club it’s more or less a stamp of quality. I still prefer to wait and see if he can hack it before I consider him a success. Sitting on the fence does not mean I’m slagging anyone off.

  54. Trevor wrote: What a shame Gibbs is now injured. He showed again last night he should be our number 1 LB. Now Clichy has no competition.

    Ever imagine if Arsene Wenger set-up the Back Four
    comprising: Sagna, Squillaci, Koscielny, Vermaelen.
    Both Kos & Verminator were ex-LB, so interchange between the two is easy for AW.

  55. The whole midfield was outstanding… but Denilson in particular pulling the strings was a joy to watch. So glad to have him back. The triangles between himself, Jack, Nasri and Rosicky were just… mwah!… bellissimo(sp)!

  56. Furious Styles…

    No biggy about your position on this. Be cool.

  57. James your right of course you are, ive always said that. Your a good chap.
    There will always be some players in the team who play better than others, it doesnt mean that anyone is critisising them, it means we have a good squad.
    Im looking forward to the draw on saturday. I wonder if AW will reflect his team selection in whoever we get ?

  58. Mr Furious Styles

    I was just backing Darius’s point mate, not naming you as one of them kind of temprorary supporters.

    The Nasri celebration may bring back memories of badge kissing by Ade to some! But I do believe Nasri has fallen for our club. He is a true Arsenal type player, great skill, running ability, trickery, you can see how much the club means to him.

  59. boomer

    I think we can safely say the likes of Gibbs (if available), Lansbury, Djourou, Fabianski or the other keepers, Vela, JET will all get game time in the Cup.

    Then you have the likes of Denilson, Wilshire, Eboue, Rosicky, Bendtner who could be used if not getting a lot of 1st team minutes. Bendtner I include as I think Chamakh is really proving to be a top player, so Bendtner’s match time may be reduced.

  60. Darius at 10:58 am
    “Back your team to the hilt – as long as a player puts on an Arsenal shirt, that’s my philosophy.”

    Agree 110% with that. It is my philosophy too…

    LA @ 11:21am, It indeed is.. Loved the passion in the celebration of the first goal between them..

  61. Fingers crossed for Gibbs!

    Would be a huge blow to the player if hes ruled out for long. Happened roughly the same time last year, and has already lost a season of games.

  62. I was bemused by the Schizophrenia shown by one of the most cynical pundits (or analysts after what they’re now called) – Mr. Steve Claridge.

    This is one guy who has eternally preached that Arsenal don’t have a spine and that we’re full of weak arsed brittle players unlike the paragons of power ala Chelsea and United.

    Last night, he was lauding Arsenal and especially Nasri and Rosicky for being very strong and tanacious on the ball, albeit making any compliments through gritted teeth.

  63. Denilson was MASSIVE yesterday.. And the understanding between Denilson, Lil Jack and Nasri was awesome..

  64. Our midfield was the surprise for me. They are very young but all played their part, some more noticable than others.
    I hope there is no hangover against WBA. A good indicator will come from that game, i think. In the past we have had to take a slip following exspresive flowing football, it happened at Sunderland in the first half. But there is a diference this term. I think the quality of our game has improved. For me its not always about individual performances. We tend not to dwell on the ball as we have before. Players minds are improving and that is where the difference lies, the ability is there, the decision making has not always been there too. This is the dawning of the age of, oh you know the rest

  65. CG, thats what i think. I dont believe that AW has changed his stance on the CC, i stand by the fact that we are growing older and wiser and stronger. In a sence less younger players will get their chance due to the fact that our so called younger players are already more experienced and mature than their peers

  66. I think Denilson doesn’t get the credit he deserves because he makes difficult things look so, so easy. He is one of, if not our most efficient player.

    Loved Rosicky too, as effective and elegant as ever, would have been great if he’d got a goal to wash away the sour taste from the penalty miss. He will have a big part to play this season, as will Denilson.

  67. Just like to take a quick moment to say that Stoke City are a fucking disgrace. I said last season Andy Wilkinson was a ticking thug of a timebomb and that it was only a matter of time before he broke a leg. Moussa Dembele is a class little player and he’s been badly setback by a wild-eyed and bloodthirsty attack by a brutal, mindless bastard intent on only one thing – impressing the other brutal, mindless bastards that share his dressing room and shitheap stadium; with a big show of violence against a foreigner/southerner. Only a yellow! He needs immediate banning – for starters – and then there needs to be a full investigation by the FA, and by the police into the training methods going on at Stoke City (Pulis: “Fix bayonets! Stab! Stab! Stab!”). The ridiculous aggression (Mark Hughes is right) being drummed into these players needs immediate attention and immediate, public addressing. Action against must be taken against Pulis. It’s not football it’s fucking street-fighting and it’s fucking criminal.

  68. Whilst it is not condoning the tackle in any way nor am I trying to belittle the injury either but am I the only one who finds Hughes’ hypocrisy too much to stomach?

  69. YW

    I find it very rich coming from Hughes, he can have no complaints from me.

    We have had our players legs snapped left right and centre for the media to say they should be stronger!

    I do agree with Limpar though, action must be taken by the FA, against Stoke, against Robinson, against Wilkinson now, any other fucker who is caught purposefully trying to cause damage to a fellow player.

  70. no complaints for me*

  71. YW – it’s more ironic and amusing. And in a very mysterious way – it validates absolutely what Wenger has been trying to say without him saying “I told you so”.

    I suppose the narrative will be that Wilkinson is not that kind of lad, he’s honest, he’s committed, but he doesn’t have a malicious bone in him. His tackle was just late and clumsy, and it could have happened in any contact sport. It’s part of the English game.

    I have a feeling that unless one of the marquee English players of the so called golden generation has their leg amputated because of a tackle on the football field, the vested interests in English football will continue to protect and promote the savagery and violence.

    Another alternative is for the Fulham player to sue Wilkinson, Pullis and Stoke City for conspiracy as well as GBH with intent. And it’s not about getting a fine – its about someone serving jail time.

  72. Wasn’t Hughes more elbows and a kick in the shin rather than full-on career threatening straight-leg bone-shatterers?

  73. YW,

    I agree to an extent on Hughes’ hypocrisy but am in such a good mood this morning that am willing to see the positives in it. If the likes of Hughes are finally condemning tackles like that then perhaps there will be the momentum to make significant changes.

    They’re the tackles that upset me the most. If a player is angry and sets out to do someone then it’s entirely wrong but you can see his motivation. An unnecessary but calculated chalenge, like the Cahill challenge on Chamakh, really angers me because they’re risking injuring somebody and I can’t see why beyond a need to prove their physicality.

  74. Limpar

    What part are you struggling with? The bone shatterers agreement explicitly states NO bone shattering t 2-0 up. It’s frowned upon.

  75. LA

    His Blackburn side were ‘by any means’ necessary.

    YW

  76. All this furore about the injuries to Fulham players and Man U players just shows once more how ahead of everyone else Arsene is. He’s been saying it for years.
    Darius, your earlier posts made perfect sense and why that other poster felt the need to take it so personally and then claim not to understand is beyond me.
    I won’t accept the handshake from whining wavering ‘fans’ who try to be all gracious and claim they are happy to be proved wrong. They need to back the team from the very first moment.

  77. Craig the Scotish Gooner

    Ian Wright summed up Fabianski perfectly calling him Tissue Hands

  78. Hughes is clearly a hypocrite then… I don’t really care what he has to say in all this though. I want Stoke punished… it’s long overdue.

    The savagery and violence isn’t the sole preserve of English football. Look at Ujfalusi’s ‘reducer’ on Messi last week… the latest in a long list of butchers playing in La Liga, all the way back to and beyond Goikoetxea severing Maradona’s ankle ligaments and leaving him with 17 stitches in his leg. But the frequency of stupid challenges in England does seem to be on the up and up, it badly needs addressing and it doesn’t take a scientist or a lawyer or a “football person” to see that it’s handful of teams doing it. When the best players from other national leagues stop coming here it won’t be to avoid playing ‘The English Game’ – that should be an attraction – it will be to avoid playing Stoke.

    Stoke are by far and away the worst example. A perfect little pocket of violence that needs to be made an example of for the good of the game. It’s easy. Ban Pulis for life, shoot Shawcross, set Wilkinson on the rest of the backroom staff…. or some other eye-catching, example-setting punishment. Like they did with Guy Fawkes.

  79. Tissue Hands?
    Talk Shite?

    SWP has a nice contract?
    Sweet.

  80. Mr Furious Styles

    Darius

    You’re missing the point. Its not about my personal position, I honestly don’t care what you might think of me.

    It’s about you calling “fence sitters” spineless, which I cant understand, given that we have the same understanding of what being a fence sitter entails.

    I see nothing wrong with withholding ones opinion until one has the adequate information to give an (qualified) opinion.

  81. Cracking post YW.

  82. First chance to comment on the game:

    Amazing performance, some of the football served up was from another planet. Denilson/Wilshere/Kos/Nasri were the stand out players. Gibbs was also excellent.

    Some of the passing was unreal. My favorite was AA’s to Chamakh for the nd pen. Instinctive and clinical. Fabinaski should have done better with their goal (which was offside) and in my mind Wenger must serisouly be considering his position as No2.

    Not going to dwell on that though after a performance like that from the team.

    Wilshere was superb. Such a mature performance. Him and Nasri had the Spuds chasing shadows.

  83. I’m disappointed that Lansbury isn’t getting more of a mention on here…

    He played with enthusiasm all match and did a solid solid job. He worked hard to make things difficult for the Spurs midfield, closing down all of the time, and did not look out of place alongside the likes of Nasri and Rosicky with his touches and movement.

    I’ve never been that sure about him, but after last night I think we can relax a bit knowing that we’ve got such an enthusiastic and capable player in the squad to come in whenever we’re a bit light on numbers in midfield.

    I hope he has a big future with us. I’d love to see him powering our central midfield for the next decade alongside Wilshere, Ramsey, Frimpong, Eastmond, Aneke and the rest.

  84. Yes lets hang em all by their bootlaces

  85. Limpar, please leave the stoke towel-monitor out of it – I’ve got him in my fantasy league team and he’s Stoke’s highest scorer.

  86. Darius:

    “Laurent Koscielny is rapidly becoming one of those players you can’t ignore. An Arsenal legend in the making. Fence sitters took the easy and spineless “let’s wait and see option”, with the only rationale for their creeping doubts about him being that – well, they didn’t know him or he didn’t come from the right side of the rail tracks.”

    Can’t you just admit that you went over the top here?

    I’m glad Mr Styles called you out on it, because you insulted every fellow fan who actually wanted to see Kos play before they formed an opinion on him. I have no idea why you think its superior to form an opinion that goes beyond Arsenal’s own assessment. Arsene and the staff will freely admit that one can’t be 100% sure a new signing will thrive in the EPL, no matter what the pedigree.

  87. Interesting that, after one of his players was nailed by a rather – how shall we put this? – ‘over-enthusiastic’ opponent, Mark Hughes is now rather keen on the idea of protecting players against over-physical tactics.

    Of Andy Wilkinson’s assault on Moussa Dembele on Tuesday, Sparky said: “When you are at that stage of the game and your team is leading 2-0, there is a certain code I would suggest that you look after your fellow professional, and the lad has ignored that.

    “There was no need for the challenge at that late stage in the game and he has put a fellow professional’s career at risk by the nature of it. I don’t know what the hell he was thinking about to be perfectly honest.”

    Eyebrows will be raised by anyone who nursed bruises dished out by Hughes’s rather feisty Blackburn side (nicknamed the Bully Boys), particularly – to pick just one example – Robin van Persie.

    For those of you with Hughesian short memories, Van Persie nearly had to spend a summer breathing through a hose after Andy Todd smashed into his face during the 2005 FA Cup semi-final. Sparky reacted to Arsene Wenger’s subsequent complaints in true comedy fashion by claiming not to have seen the incident, then said:

    “I don’t think we need to be criticised for that. We had a game plan to try to compete and that’s what we did. If you want to criticise us for our approach, then you will do.”

    For the record, Arsenal were 2-0 up at the time.

    via football365.com

  88. Limpar,

    That Ujfalusi tackle was remarkable just for the near certainty I have it wouldn’t even have warranted a yellow most times in the Premier League.

  89. Sorry Ormer, while Delap himself may be spared, all towels found anywhere near the Britannia will be burnt, or worse hidden – thus rendering him entirely without purpose in a game of football.

    All those bastard little monitors are going straight to the wall too I’m afraid.

  90. You might be right, Ole. Well… Robinson not even being shown a yellow for his assault on Diaby shows you the whole thing stinks… and the fact that he wasn’t retrospectively banned shows you that the world has in fact gone mad. If Wilkinson isn’t given a retrospective red then someone’s not doing their job, tipp-tappy footballers everywhere can consider themselves in grave danger and the Premier League is headed straight down the pan.

  91. nolagunner

    No. I still insist that there are spineless Arsenal fans out there – maybe I called a bit too close to home for some. There’s no shame in me having that view. It’s nonsense about waiting to have a so called qualified view – that qualification was already done for us by the people whose job it is to scout players.

    Styles obviously feels he needs to argue against that – and that’s fine by me too. I don’t have a problem with his view.

    And I also agree with Steww who eloquently says “I won’t accept the handshake from whining wavering ‘fans’ who try to be all gracious and claim they are happy to be proved wrong. They need to back the
    team from the very first moment.”….

  92. One can’t defend Fabianski. At some point, whether by luck or lack of ability, he has to have a game in which something doesn’t get hung on him.

    The position from which Robbie Keane scored, the striker would be fancied to score 8 out of 10 times. It was essentially a penalty. If you look at it that way, it seems absurd to blame a keeper for getting his hands on a penalty but not quite saving it.

    At some point Fabianski has to run out of chances if the doubts persist.

    I think the goal was not his fault. I’ll probably be the only one here to think so. I think he’s being blamed for getting a hand to it. If he hadn’t done so, NOBODY would have blamed him.

    That said, you can’t be a number 2, 25 years old, and under scrutiny at every single point. At some point it starts to wear you down.

  93. I would arguge that having misgivings about the side (and willing to be proved wrong) does not equate to not backing the team.

    I have misgivings about Fabianski, and would be over the moon if he proved me wrong. I still back him every game he plays for us though.

  94. LimparAssist at 12.30……hear hear. Whilst there was a certain bitter irony in Mark Ooze disgust at the “tackle” (and we should stop calling them that…attempted GBH would be a better description), Stoke, and by extension their manager, are currently an absolute disgrace to the league. How long can this go on? if there isn’t a system of serious retrospective punishment introduced and bans handed out for these assaults then it makes a mockery of the whole game. It won’t be too long before someone’s career is ended at this rate. You just know it.

  95. Ole – I would agree that the goal wasn’t his fault per se. What I would say though is that the fact he got a good hand to it should have meant he saved it. Also it was the edge of the area, so nowhere near as a pen.

  96. Limpar

    I agree with all your comments, logical as always mate.

    Something must be done with such tactics and fouls. You could see in some of the very late challenges our players endured against Spurs that it is a cultural thing bread into players at an early age. Wilshire was slammed to the ground on numerous occasions, the more technically gifted player giving the opposition a runaround having no alternative but to chop him down.. is that right?

    Some of their players had no chance of getting the ball but still dived in. Maybe it was the occasion that got to them, but these challenges are what we have to put up with every game. Theres only so many games where we can avoid a serious injury. I really really feel for Wenger with how he stresses game after game on these issues which the British media and FA keep brushing aside.

    Sadly I still can’t see the FA pulling their finger out, they have proved time and time again that the most cowardly way to go forward is by doing nothing..

  97. Not seen the Stoke tackle. I take it that is was a bad one?

  98. Why anyone gives a shit about the one goal against in a 4-1 win at White Hart Lane is beyond me. But as it goes, I agree with Ole.

  99. goonerandy,

    Honest question. Imagine that was a penalty. Keane shoots. Ball is headed towards the far corner. Fabianski goes down quickly. Fabianski gets a hand to it. Ball goes in.

    Be honest. His fault? Or not?

  100. Because it wasn’t a one-off. Thats why.

    It has cost us before, and it will cost us again.

  101. Ole – Not if he hit it hard enough no. But last nights shot was not that scenario. It was a decent shot from the edge of the area. The keeper got down to it easily enough, but yet could not push it around the post.

    I would not hang him out to dry over that perticular goal, but it is yet another goal where “he could have done better”.

    Anyway, I am not getting dranw into an argument on this as I can’t be arsed. That is my opinion, and I am happy with it.

  102. Ole

    Im with you there, I don’t blame him for the goal. Keane was 1 on 1, all the time in the world, be it offside, and hit it into the corner.

    Fabianski got a hand to it, so you would think he could keep it out, on another day he would. It just seems as you say everything that happens is turned to a negative by the fans, and its a shame as you would think our supporters have learnt that turning on your own player aint the way to go… Hopefully it doesn’t go that way, the guy has the ability to turn it round, he just needs confidence.

    His stunning save at the death for me by far outweighs the sloppy goal of Keane’s. I think Fab played well overall.

    Shame on the supporters who consistently come on to have a moan.

  103. It was offside, he almost saved it, as soon as the flag didn’t go up it was a goal, anything less would’ve been a surprise and it didn’t cost us anything at all.

  104. Hey…another way to look at it is that if he saved Keen’s shot, then we won’t have hammered the Spuds 4-1. Let’s be thankful for small mercies.

    On other news, I gather Titus Bramble has been arrested on suspicion of rape…

  105. Fair enough Andy, but the more we keep nagging at a player, groaning at him, eating away at his confidence. We will waste a hugely talented player.

    A bit like with Senderos… who lost his confidence and never had the support to get back to his excellent performances.

    Fabianski was a couple years back a young goalkeeper everyone was talking about. For me, if he was playing regularly at Birmingham, fans would recommend signing him.

  106. Not if he hit it hard enough no. But last nights shot was not that scenario. It was a decent shot from the edge of the area.

    It wasn’t from the edge of the area. Go watch it again. http://www.101greatgoals.com/videodisplay/robbie-keane-tottenham-arsenal-6946871/

    Fabianski wasn’t on his line either he was 3 yeards off his line. So the relative distance between Keane & Fabianski would have been some 12-14 yards. Essentially a penalty situation.

  107. it was even hard than a penalty, because in a peno, player and keeper take their positions and the ref blows. In this case, the striker has even more of an advantage since the keeper cant even just guess where the ball is headed.

  108. I would think anybody who’s slept with Titus Bramble must at some point have considered pressing rape charges… if only to avoid the embarrassment of having consented.

  109. I can’t understand the mindset of raping someone – if he can’t get laid legitimately, why can’t he just pay for it like Rooney.

  110. AIC,

    Good to see you again. Thing about Arshavin is despite his laziness he has this uncanny ability to have an effect on games. Last night he scored one and provided one assist and in 6 games so far this season, I think he’s scored four and also provided a hat-full of assists. I really do think he’s wasted on the wing. I think he’s best playing off the main striker in the hole – but its goes against the formation.

    Darius,

    I too like Koscielny. I think he’s played very well and will develop into a serious centre half. I was also critical of not keeping Gallas. Gallas played well last season, yet we still ended up conceding. Kosser has played well so far this season – and guess what? – we’ve still ended up conceding.

    Dont get me wrong – I’ve been buoyed by some of the defensive play. Especially our ability to deal with the long high balls of sh!tkickers like bolton. What really impresses me is the work ethic in pressing the ball. That has singularly made a dramatic difference to the defense. I can’t tell you how impressed I was seeing Chamahk gallop across to the wing to close down the full back 19minutes into extra time when we were 4-1 up.

    All that said – we’re still conceding goals Darius and its cost us points against teams we should have put away. Dress it up anyway you want.

    Despite the derby factor, the spuds are not competitors for silverware and they havn’t been for over 20 years. They’re merely fodder for the occasional shock. Do you know ‘Arry has faced Arsenal 34 times in his career – and only won 3 times!

    In two weeks time we go to the bridge. That will be a test of where we’re really at. We’ll get a good indication if were competing for honours or places.

  111. Heres a rather grainy clip of the tackle in question…pretty horrific.

    Stokes pathetic…Danny Murphy chucked the ball at Retardo Shawcross…and got booked…

    http://ht.ly/2HWw8

  112. http://www.arsenal.com/news/news-archive/gibbs-foot-injury-is-only-short-term

    Phew! My joy is now unalloyed. Even if it’s short-term “Arsenal-style”, it’s still so much better than a broken metatarsal.

  113. Joe,

    I can see your general thrust. It is worrying that we cannot keep a clean sheet at will. In general though you have to say that we have gone through phases in the past where we have worked on this; I recall the 2007-2008 season or was it the year before, where Arsene was not happy with our defensive performance, and clean sheets was the goal.

    To put things into context, it is true that our main rival, the chavs, can and do keep cleans sheets. They are very strong, we know. Manchester United, on the other hand, are not doing this, and neither are Liverpool. Manchester City, trying to be the Inter Milan of England, are not doing this either, at least not consisently. It is a hard thing do to.

    However, I do think this is being thought about. Defensively I think we have been outstanding recently. We restricted Sp*ds to not very much last night, Sunderland didn’t create too much. But, we seem to concede a goal a game, which, if we keep winning, is not a problem; but then, the Sunderland goal would have been nice to have kept out.

  114. That is great news FunGunner 🙂

  115. When is Diaby coming back? With Faby most likely out for Chelsea We need him and as many have stated Kosceilny is a gem.

    many of us had never seen him play before he joined us and didnt have an opinion of what kind of player he was (which i think is much better than saying he’d be a flop before seeing him kick a ball coz we hadnt heard much about him).

    I am just happy he is an arsenal player.

  116. oops..where is my avatar?

  117. @FL

    me LIKEY> ALOT

  118. Well said, Muppet @ 2:15pm.

    Some people seem to think that we don’t have more clean sheets because we can’t be bothered to defend, or we don’t think it matters. Just as at the start of the season, we aim to win every single game we play. We don’t, but not because we don’t want to win. Failing to achieve something is not the same as failing to try – and as you rightly say our defensive solidity has been and is being worked on, and some improvement is visible.

    And it’s not “dressing it up” to say failure to keep more clean sheets, while it makes our job harder, is not fatal to our title-winning chances.

  119. @ Kabisa-Asante

    Everyone can see our defense has immensely improved! Surely no team can keep a clean sheet all the time(manure did try for 11 consecutive games but it was always for boring 1-0)

    I’d rather we won by 4-1 than 1-0, Fungunner “Failing to achieve something is not the same as failing to try”if only all those clamouring for clean sheets can understand that.

  120. Darius – I agree about the rape issue. All very strange. I work in a f eld where I come across victims and offenders sometimes. I think the general impulse for offenders is one of control as opposed to getting his (or hers) rocks off.

  121. What do 9 out of 10 people prefer?
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    Gang Rape

  122. Goonerandy – true that. Many cases are more about power and control than delinquent gratification. It doesn’t change the fact that it it scars victims probably for the rest of their lives.

    @Joe – I appreciate where you’re coming from, and I think Fun Gunner above captures my thoughts about the issue of clean sheets vs performances, and also to compare our results with closest rivals.

    I think sometimes we just look for perfection to the point of being anal. Pragmatic will work – and winning 4-1, 4-1, 3-1 with a couple of draws feels pretty pragmatic. It will be nice if we had clean sheets, but let’s work with what we have.

  123. ** 2-1 at Blackburn, not 3-1 **

  124. Clean sheets become important if/when we have a dry patch in front of goal otherwise ill take 4-1 all day long

    (dry patch – tee hee 🙂 )

  125. Good news about Gibbs though…he needs to be available for selection to keep competition up with Clichy.

    Also, it will be good if Vermaelen is not rushed back in after his injury – Sasquatch and the Kos can take care of business until he’s good and ready – we shouldn’t rush him in if we don’t need to.

  126. @darius & Goonerandy
    Agree, think if it was just about gratification they would go to a hooker or wank. Its about control, and some demonism. Me thinks.

    @DeiseGooner
    errrm, what is your point exactly…?

  127. Darius – Yeah, I wasn’t excusing them (I hope it didn’t come across like that). The impact on a victim can be life long. It is without doubt one of the most disgusting and selfish crimes out there.

  128. “Wolverhampton fans attacked Notts County coaches leaving a woman requiring hospital treatment following Tuesday night’s fiery Carling Cup tie at Molineux.”

    “The coaches transporting the away fans back to Nottingham came under attack from Wolves fans who threw bricks at the travelling supporters.”

    “One coach had its window smashed resulting in a lady suffering facial injuries.”

    If their fans are preapred to do this off the pitch – you do wonder what their players think they can get away with on the pitch.

    Wolves and Stoke RFC should be bannished from association football.

  129. Gibbs was excellent, Clichy has a fith on his hands for his place now. Which is obviously a good thing and may even raise his performences further.

    Is it plausible that TV5 might be in for some bench time?

  130. My point? No point, it was a joke. Didn’t you get it?

  131. @ goonerandy

    WITHOUT DOUBT ONE PF THE TRULY WORST EVER CRIMES!

    i have never understood the need for it! Like someone says the worst case scenario is go pay for it!

  132. goonerandy on September 22, 2010
    at 3:03 pm

    No biggy – it didn’t come out wrong and I agree with your thinking on it…

  133. PF = of

  134. KOS is rapidly becoming my favorite player. Great game yesterday. Everyone played well. Happy the Gibbs injury is only short term. I support Fabianski to the hilt when he is on the pitch but he still makes me nervous.

    Our defense has certainly improved this year. The organization and positioning is 1000% improved. I think letting WG move on was the best thing we could have done. I realize he is a great individual player but he was our senior member and the one who the rest of the team should have looked too as the captain of the defense and our organizer. That he was not. However enough said about last year. I agree that we need to learn to keep a clean sheet especially when we lead 1 – 0. However I am confident that we will learn to do that. I think it represents the last piece of the puzzle this team needs to put in place. Getting 3 points from the games when we are not on top of our attacking game will be critical in the long term.

  135. It’s not about learning to keep clean sheets. Sometimes other teams have the ball and low and behold sometimes they score. It’s called football.

    We beat the scum 4-1.

  136. Goonerandy…

    On current form, Vermaelen is due bench time if we look at form. Koscielny and Squillaci I think have the full intention of giving Wenger a very big selection headache.

    Regardless who is picked – I think it’s worth noting that we have a good group of players that can be used for either the EPL and CL – or the FA and Carling cup. Splitting the duties this way may give each player enough rest while ensuring good pitch time….

    Bill, I’m impressed – you sound positive about the collective defensive effort….

  137. holy cow!! it was a murderous tackle, Arseman.

  138. Limpar:

    It was a great game yesterday and we did win 4 – 1. We have had the clean sheet discussion before and not worth starting again especially after we played so well yesterday. The KOS was brilliant again yesterday. I am very pleased with the defensive upgrade compared to the last few years. I hope and think we will continue to get better and we will start to see us getting 3 points in a lot more of those games that we do not score more then 1 goal.

    WBA has been playing very well at home so they may come in with some confidence. Hopefully we can take care of them quickly and not get caught looking forward to midweek CL and the Chelsea game.

  139. Well just saw keane’s goal & trust me (being a keeper myself) Lukas did wonderfully well to get a hand to it..pure reflexes

  140. Do I see people raving nasri’s performance?
    I meantioned yesterday, I saw him lose the ball at least 5-6 times. He was absolutely poor till the last 15 min or so of normal time, after which he pulled up hi socks & did really well. Is it just me??

  141. Someone mentioned Kos’ one touch passing game earlier (deano?)… bears repeating. The way he turns an incoming cross away and into a perfect pass to a teammate with one touch is a bit special.

  142. Mj, i thought Nasri played well though sometimes he held on to the ball too long trying to do the complicated while a good old pass would have done the job. If only he’d taken the penalty on Saturday!

  143. Darius – I agree with all of that. Competition for places is the best things for this squad. They are (mostly) all young and desperate to play.

    As Bill mentioned, we seem to be a much tighter unit this year. The signs are good so far.

  144. I loved watching Kos clear everything up in the box. Nothing got past him. He has such a good reading of the game. I remember in particular from last night a cross coming in from the Sp*ds, and he anticipated it, intercepted it, and calmly passed the ball out. I’m excited to see more of him.

  145. Hello all

    What a cracking match last night!!!

    Thought the travelling fans deserved some praise on here. they were fantastic, constantly filling SHL with glorious arsenal songs, which could be clearly heard through my computer. The only time they could be drowned out was during when spurs go marching in.

    COYG!

  146. Nasri went missing for about 20mins at some point in the match. But apart from that I thought he ran the show. He was everywhere demanding the ball. Him and Wilshere were far too much for the Spuds to contain.

  147. Exactly, Firstlady, he took too much time on the ball. I had this awful feeling that he might have lost his (awsome) pre-season form with that injury..especially with Cesc out for the next 2, he’s got a major role to play. Hope he gets his confidence back after the performance in the end.

  148. Watching twitchy after the game was entertaining. He avoided discussing the match as much as possible and just repeated that it was a good opportunity for some of his younger players.

    Hmmm, a quick change of tune there ‘arry you dodgy twat.

  149. Not trying to detract from the fact that we had a fantastic game, but I do agree with the point that Nasri didn’t actually have one of his best games. There were a few times when he lost the ball unnecessarily, when a simple pass would have sufficed. Also, his first penalty wasn’t really all that great. If the keeper had guessed the right way, he probably would have saved it. The second was clever though… waiting for the keeper to make his move.

  150. MJ – I saw that ealier, then after reading the article realised that nowhere does it say that. Arsene said he intends to fulfil his current contract. He always says that. Nowhere does he mention that it will be his last (although it could be at his age).

  151. MJ, Firstlady

    Regarding Nasri.. My brother and I both noticed he was holding the ball just a second too long around the box as well! That sharpness will come back in the next couple of matches.

    My main criticism of nasri last year was that he could disappear for extended periods and that when in the “cesc” role he would not drop deeper to demand the ball the way fab does so well. This is no longer a problem and its clear someone at arsenal noticed this as well!

    Loved to see him kissing the badge, he was all smiles

  152. Someone had told me that Djourou wasn’t up to speed and was no where near ready for first team action – and i’m glad they were proved wrong. He was a bit rusty at times but in general, was much sharper than i expected, given what i’d been told.

    Can’t say much more about KOS, Jack, Gibbs etc that hasn’t already been said. And Lansbury impressed me more than ever.

    Fabianski should have saved that shot, it was at his near post with only a metre to aim at and he still didn’t make it. Countless other goalies would have been criticised for conceding that goal. I was really hoping that he’d have a game that would prove me wrong about him, but he didn’t really do that. He was fairly solid for the rest of the game though, coming off his line well.

    mj_gunner – very harsh about Nasri. I thought he was excellent, not doing the spectacular, but was brilliant at holding onto the ball, riding constant niggling tackles and making a pass. Can’t ask much more than that when playing in that position.

  153. @ Limpar

    It’s not about learning to keep clean sheets. Sometimes other teams have the ball and low and behold sometimes they score. It’s called football.

    Exactly. It’s not as if there is a button you can press at the start of a game that says “clean sheet” and that’s it. We can defend well, try not to make mistakes, do all the right things, but whether the opposition score or not is not entirely within our control. Some seem to be labouring under the delusion that it is.

  154. wenger to leave in 2014

    Errrm. The world is ending in 2012…

  155. avaris – I have noticed that on loads of penalties. People waxing lyrical about how somebody “kept their cool”, when in fact the pen was pretty rubbish and it was luck the keeper went the wrong way.

    Nasri’s 1st smacked of a player scared to miss the target and take a risk going for the corner. Lots of penalties are like that I think. For an example of a good pen see Gerrards on Sunday. Or most of RvP’s.

  156. lol Arsenalkabisa

  157. goonerandy

    RvP is the best penalty taker I have ever seen. If i had one penalty, my life on the line, RvP is taking it.

  158. Geo – It seems you just saw the last 45 mins yesteday..let wait till we get highlightes of his performance.
    Very harsh about Lukasz, i dont think many other keepers would have reached the shot the way he did. I would have been a different picture then Just because he managed to touch the ball, hes made things difficult for himslef

  159. NJ – Agreed, he is excellent at spot kicks. The best I have ever seen would have been Matt Le Tissier. I think he only ever missed one.

  160. mj gunner 3.34 and 3.32. Agree re Naz but not about RKs goal. It was poor goalkeeping.

  161. goonerandy – Glad I’m not the only one who noticed it. Don’t get me wrong, he put it in the net and it set us on our way, but it wasn’t a confident penalty, as you say.

    Fantastic game overall. Although we might have been saying otherwise had we not won. We’d probably all be on here today moaning about how we didn’t kill off the game when we had the game under our control in the first half. It’s something that we probably need to work on… I love us knocking the ball around, and it put a huge smile on my face hearing the olés from the crowd, but at the end of the day, the ball has got to go in the back of the net. 70% possession is nice, but the stat that counts is the one that tells you how many goals each team scored.

  162. I watched the whole match mj. I see what you mean about him holding onto it for maybe a second too long, but he always retained possession and kept the move going. He’s onlyg been back a couple of games and will only get better as the season progresses, but i thought he was quality. Great to see him getting the armband too, that would have been a special moment for him.

    We’re gonna have to agree to disagree on the fab ‘save’. I don’t like criticising our players at all, but at 25 there has to be a point where he steps up to become a true challenger for the no1 jersey, if he’s going to remain our backup. I just think Chesney should be given his chance. I’ve seen him save countless shots down low like that, with mega strong hands, getting down to them even though he’s got a few inches further to drop which is down to his amazing reflexes.

  163. I think that yesterday showed a progression from last seasons Arsenal. Last year it would have been typical of us to string together 30+ passes, the crowd ole’ing and laughing…….only for us to lose the ball, and a hoof over the top leads to their striker scoring after 2 passes.

    This time when we lost the ball, we hunted it down in packs and won back possesion very quickly. the Spuds must have felt as though they had no chance on winning the game at times.

  164. believe what you want boomer, you can’t call it poor goalkeeping by any means, its a one on one ffs

  165. …Eschewing his usual policy of fielding reserves and youth with a smattering of experience, Wenger noted post-match that it was important to maintain the momentum of the early season. So he fielded a team which was reserves and youth with a smattering of experience….

    …yeah still chuckling…brilliant.

  166. Geo – regarding Schezny, I can only say AKB!

  167. I wonder if AW is thinking of giving our number 3 a run out between the posts

  168. on to the game,

    Very glad we won.

    Truth be told the fact is that our reserves and youth have had more experience over the years. It does not change the fact that they were reserves and youth. 8 changes from the team that played on sat says it all. It is just that they year wiser we keep talking about is now being seen more clarly cos these ones set out very young and now have plenty of experiences over the years that belie their age!

    Likely Nodvert may have played if he was not injured, but then how much experience can kos be said to actually have had?

    So i don’t see any great departure at all bu AW. as mentioned above, plenty of reserves and youth sprinkled with experience. We are now reaping from our deep squad.

  169. Geo

    Re: Fabianski/Tech 9

    I think its safe to say that Wojech was probably grumbling after their goal that he couldve gotten down to save it.

    IMO Tech should start in the Carling Cup. As AW said in his interview, it is good to give a 2nd chance, but not 10, that is the nature of football.

    Now im not completely writing Fabianski off, but I would like to see Wojech given a chance

  170. MJ –

    “you can’t call it poor goalkeeping by any means, its a one on one ffs”

    That is people’s gripe mate……it is not a one off.

  171. It is poor goalkeeping no matter what way you look at it my friend. Your intitled to your opinion though, i just disagree with yours.

  172. lol mj – fair enough! I thought I knew best… now you’ve got me questioning everything i’ve ever believed 😉

  173. The more I think about team selection the more it seems like hilarious pool hustle from AW. Redknapp got mugged, plain and simple.

    After the draw AW said something like, “We have a policy in the Carling Cup that we intend to stick to”. Redknapp gets lured into an FSOS, tries to beat us at the youth game – surely they’d have a decent chance playing at home against an Arsenal reserve team with a strong bench…then BAM: a team full of first team squad players flashes up on SSN, right in the middle is his team-talk. He can’t even look Livermore in the eye; knowing what lies in store for him.

    What followed was a ridiculous mismatch and a great confidence booster for us. They have that beardy linesman to thank for not getting completely munched in normal time.

  174. goonerandy

    “we hunted it down in packs”

    THIS IS THE DIFFERENCE. this is what barca made us look so bad at last year. the positional play defensively combined with these pack close downs is really making a difference for us. oh yea and the mighty KOSCIELNY. but he’s a french softie with only 1 season in top flight football, sell him in january for some good old fashioned ‘ard men

  175. To be fair though to fab – shot stopping isn’t normally his weakness. His cross-claiming was good as was his timing on coming out to sweep up.

    I was just hoping for a match where we wouldn’t feel the need to have these discussions about him.

  176. mj_gunner on September 22, 2010
    at 3:47 pm

    Sky is quoting L’Equipe. I read the original interview and what Wenger said was;

    “It is my desire. But, at my age (60 years), I am obliged to consider the short term. I learned how to like what I have. If I am still there, it is not for lack of proposals elsewhere, I appreciate really what one gives me here. The luck that I have is that I can work with complete freedom.”

    How Sky can interpret that as saying Wenger will leave in 2014 is beyond me.

    http://www.lequipe.fr/Football/20100922_082947_wenger-plus-l-excuse-de-l-inexperience.html

  177. Craig the Scotish Gooner

    Great news about Gibbo only suffering bruising.He will be Arsenal’s first choice LB by the end of this season and will be pushing Cashley for his England place.Dont get me wrong Clichy is good but Gibbs is just better as a defender and definately going forward

  178. Adrian Durham is dedicated a whole show to the appreciation of Arsene Wenger.

    He says thank you to Wenger for bringing through English talent like Jack Wilshere – the best player England will have in a generation. Even better than what Rooney and Gerrard were at 18.

    What is this world coming too….

  179. anyway if we believe in the Arsenal way then by all acounts Chezny will get his chance. I have to be honest here, i have never seen him play a full 90, im going on press reports as well as other Gooners. I wanted Fabby to do well but the facts dont lie. That has nothing to do with not being supportive, it has to do with improving, he knows it as well, goal keeping is a vunrable place to be and you cant hide, i admire the man for all he gives but that has nothing to do with making the right decision and the manager will be the one to do that

  180. You serious Darius?

  181. Ole – He said somehwere that he intends to complete his contract (as he always says). Some idiot has obviously thought that he means see it through an leave. Sensationalist reporting at its best!

  182. “And it’s not “dressing it up” to say failure to keep more clean sheets, while it makes our job harder, is not fatal to our title-winning chances.”

    Given our current state in the league, that comment is utter rubbish. One can say that the rate we concede is somewhat less that 18 other teams – but it certainly isn’t the best. Chelski have conceded 1 goal in 5 games. That is seriously impressive. Not only that they have scored 21 goals. We have scored 14 and conceded 4. Cheslki have double our goal difference and are already 4 points adrift.

    Furthermore, previous seasons, like the 2007 one (when we came third loosing out by a whole 4 points!) have shown us that the benchmark is high and that results like Sunderland and Liverpool could very well come back to haunt us.

    That’s not being “anal” – that’s just being realistic.

    As I say – have we improved ? Absolutely, and its much welcomed.

    Is it enough to win the league? No. Not if you base your assessment on the games so far.

    So we need to improve. There’s no doubt we score enough goals to win games. So making sure we keep clean sheets is very very important to our title ambitions.

    Muppet,

    Thanks for your input. I’ve always felt that this team had far more talent that Manure. As much as I feel that they’re in decline somewhat having to rely on older players like giggs and scholes and not having money in the transfer market – Ferguson is a serious manager and has the ability to get top performances from lessor players like Park Ji Sung, Fletcher and O’Shea. In short – they’ve a lot of experience in winning which means that they’ll always be a threat.

    But I do think were well stocked to surpass them. And while I feel the chavs are our main opponent in the League, they’re also the main opponent in Europe too alongside Barca.

    As for the others – well Liverpool are a complete shambles who will finish outside the top 4 again and Citeh, for all their resources, will go nowhere under Mancini who’s a dead man walking.

  183. Ole, it’s because it’s Sky. Duh 😉

  184. Even better than what Rooney and Gerrard were at 18.

    Lets hope he doesnt end up like rooney lol

  185. Joe,

    Dont you think Chelsea’s EXTREMELY weak opening fixture list in the EPL has something to do with that? I mean they’ve played NO ONE.

  186. Darius,

    Don’t fall for the trap.

    The Man is a sneaky beast, and will lay treasures to tempt your eyes, honeyed words to play with your mind, and succulent feasts to snare your stomach. Only through meditation and a diet of berries and nuts can you resist such bait.

  187. @Darius

    You touched on something interesting…I’ve been quietly noticing that in some corners the respect for Arsenal toughness is growing. Some of what I’ve heard has been on blogs, comments during games, articles, podcasts, other fans…but there is a realization happening.

    I was talking to a friend who is an Everton fan. We were talking about thug teams and the other ‘big’ boys who try to bully and kick us off the pitch. Then he says quite casually the most amazing thing…

    “I hate those teams doing that shit to you lot…but not for the reason you think. It’s hard enough trying to make sure you don’t get humiliated against the Gunners twice a season. Only weaknesses you had was inexperience and softness. Inexperience is basically gone, and now these bastards are making you hard as well. Frankly, I wish they’d leave off.”

  188. Young Jack is too respectful to end up like Rooney or Gerrard. Against Sunderland and the Totts, Rooney or Gerrad would have blasted the refferees for their negligence

  189. Sorry Joe but we will win the leage, only injuries will prevent it. We have the best players in the prem, i keep watching people on telly saying how wonderfull we play how we dominate and how we score goals all over the pitch, two seconds later its, but this and but that, why ? ile tell ya why, cause they are sheep who follow the rest of the so called experts, Glen Twoddle for example, this remember is the man who truly believes all disabled people are paying for past sins. I agree with you that chavs are our closest rivals this season but have they flattered to decieve, imean you couldnt pick a better first five games.

  190. Geo,

    Fabianski should have saved that shot, it was at his near post with only a metre to aim at and he still didn’t make it.

    No it wasn’t. It was as good as a penalty. Keane was pretty central. Strange claim.

  191. Another point, has rooney got any better in the past couple of years, not in my book

  192. Boomer – I also think we will challenge and possible win the lge. There is no reason why we can’t, and as you say have the players and ability to do so.

    Writing off the chavs is foolhardy though. They were far and away the best side last year, and show no signs of slowing. The difference is that they have not improved and we have. It remains to be seen if we have improved enough to overtake them. I have a sneaky suspision that we have.

  193. Conceding four goals in five games is pretty much par for the course if you want to win the league. Obviously conceding fewer would be better but last year Chelsea won the league having conceded 32 goals, at our current rate we’ll concede 30.4.

    There is of course, no guarantee that we’ll continue to concede at the current rate but as things stand, it doesn’t seem like something that’s particularly worth complaining about.

  194. Gadget…LOL! The sneaky bastard. He’s even forcing Mickey Mouse Quinn to eat humble pie – if ever there was a pie eating oxymoron.

    Axis. The issue to do with the strenth of our team is very visible. Others may call it tanacious, but it’s visible. Our winning goal at Blackburn for example was directly as a result of Sagna’s no nonsense determination to win the ball on the wing, something you would have questioned 2 seasons ago.

    Our midfielders are very combative for both the first ball and the recycled ball and they have the confidence within themselves.

    The best way to describe this improvement is that with 2 very difficult teams in Bolton and Blackburn – we battled fire with fire, and earned the right to play Wengerball by refusing to be bullied and imposing our game. That takes some doing.

    Any team or the misguided plundits who insist or think that Arsenal are a soft touch have a shock coming their way.

  195. Ole – Your eyes are decieving you mate. It was not “as good as a penalty”. You will argue your point though as if it were fact. Not that it matters either way.

    I was hoping that last night Fabianski would prove all the doubter wrong. He did not do that. There are so many people think it was a keeping error…….maybe they are right. Try to take step back from your own viewpoint and look as a neutral.

    I have done this…..and whilst I don’t think that it was a massive gaff as some do, I do think that having gotten to the ball he should have saved it.

  196. Darius –

    “The best way to describe this improvement is that with 2 very difficult teams in Bolton and Blackburn – we battled fire with fire, and earned the right to play Wengerball by refusing to be bullied and imposing our game. That takes some doing.”

    Excellent point (winning the right to play). In the past I think we have been guilty of expecting teams to do this. Now we are forcing the issue ourselves.

  197. I really CANNOT wait for chelsea to play city, that will be their first tough game, really can’t wait to see how they do..

    So good news for Gibbs..

    West Brom at the weekend!

  198. But Joe, each time Chelsea score a little Siberian orphan sheds a tear. I don’t think that’s seriously impressive at all.

  199. Imposing our game…I like that.

  200. I thought fabianski did well end of story, yes he maybe could have saved that, but what if joe hart or cech or van der sar did that. Everyone would be saying how it was an instinctive clever finish.

  201. Fabianski didn’t do anything to worsen his reputation. He is normally a good shot-stopper. As previously mentioned, his problems have been with commanding his area. He did this competently last night, with good communication with his defenders.
    Sure, you can argue that he should have kept it out having got his hand to it, but the fact that he even got to it when Keane was that close to him is something, right? I think it’s just fickle to bemoan one mistake in a game where he actually played very well.

  202. @ Joe

    “And it’s not “dressing it up” to say failure to keep more clean sheets, while it makes our job harder, is not fatal to our title-winning chances.”

    Given our current state in the league, that comment is utter rubbish.

    Far from being utter rubbish, that statement is just the truth. As for our position in the league table – last time I looked we were second.

    One can say that the rate we concede is somewhat less that 18 other teams – but it certainly isn’t the best.

    So second best rate of conceding isn’t good enough to win the league? Wrong. As shown by the statistics posted the other day, second best in goals conceded CAN BE good enough. You don’t have to have the best defensive record in the league to win the league – you have to have the most points.

    Chelski have conceded 1 goal in 5 games. That is seriously impressive. Not only that they have scored 21 goals. We have scored 14 and conceded 4. Cheslki have double our goal difference and are already 4 points adrift.

    Four whole points. After 5 whole games. Why are you panicking, Joe? 4 points at this stage is nothing. We were four points ahead three seasons ago in February and went on to lose the league, if you recall.

    You admit we have improved defensively, why should we not continue to do so? I also hope we will get more clinical in front of goal.

  203. For those talking about the Wenger article on Sky Sports earlier, it’s interesting to see they’ve actually changed the article to simply say “Gunners boss looks to future” as opposed to the one saying he’s quitting in 2014.

  204. @ avaris15

    A late attack of journalistic integrity, obviously. But it makes me laugh (wryly) when I see how often diametrically opposite headlines are “backed up” with the same quotes.

  205. avaris15

    That’s why they’re called Sly Sports

  206. Oh, they’re rubbish, aren’t they?!

  207. I don’t understand people who don’t get sky sports simply because they hate the people on there. At the end of the day they are showing the football, having 1 more subscriber isn’t gonna kick out all the people you don;t like..

  208. ”It feels good…. Great performance! Great to watch football being played this way! Well done boys!”-Cesc

  209. Oh, Bill, btw. are you eating your humble pie because of Kos? I wonder if you will gain 50 pounds by end of the season from all the pie you will have to eat 😉

  210. Zap

    for the first time I can see the value of twitter.

    Oh captain, my captain

  211. omg noooo 😦 mistyped my email address

  212. Fun gunner 4:55 pm – it’s all about sensationalism. They need the traffic to sell advertising so that they can pay wages for journalists to pay mortgages, feed their kids…etc.

    Call it self preservation, but it’s a by-product of the 24-hr ‘give me news now’ culture where there is no respect for journalistic integrity.

    Some news media outlets even concoct stories from one news thread and form 6 or 7 separate stories, all with different sensational headlines and no substance whatsoever – while throwing in old facts and fiction.

    Some write sensationalist headlines only for the article to have 2 flimsy paragraphs for nothing really. Just the same tired one line fact stretched to the limit and re-written with a different tense.

    This is a much wider problem though with traditional news media being in a quagmire they never saw coming. Journalism as we know it died a painful death with the advent of the blogosphere and citizen media. Not only do people now choose where they get there news, they also choose how they get it. They didn’t see citizen media coming and they don’t know how to react with the masses having a different opinion.

    Take the debate of match of the day – nobody has to sit and be forced to see their edited versions of games, most of the time with a certain bias. Look all over the web now and people can post their own videos, create their own highlights, analyse the game themselves – all without the participation of the media.

    It’s even possible to argue that people don’t really need some parts of the media because they don’t add value.

    One interesting thing I have noted – even in the Arsenal blogosphere – is that the freedom for the masses to express their opinions comes with its fair share of crap.

    There’s a big difference between those who simply just repeat, regurgitate and report news out there hoping that people will find value, and those who have an opinion that people actually want to read.

    There some bloggers I wouldn’t bventure reading simply because they’re so mundane and add little or no value at all. In some cases, they just repeat known facts verbetum. And right there in that myriad of competition, you then breed a culture of sensationalism to compete for readership.

    Believe me, there’s some Arsenal bloggers who should be paid to stop blogging, let alone headline writers at Sly Sports.

  213. OUT NOW – New All Action DVD from North London!
    See Arsenal Thrash Spurs 4-1 on their own patch!
    Including Amazing special effect’s as Spurs fans transform themselves into blue seats with a full 20 minutes of the game remaining!
    And Amazing surround sound so you can here the Arsenal fan’s singing such classics as ‘He’s gonna twitch in a minute’, ‘We won the league at the s**thole’, and ‘shall we make a DVD’

  214. Marvellous performance from all the boys last night & a real football lesson for the Spunts.

    Also good news about Gibbs today. He was just brilliant last night (loved it when Lennon switched wings) & is going to take some shifting when he finally becomes first choice.

    Whilst Wilshere, Nasri, Kos & Gibbs seem to have had their deserved plaudits I`d like to big up Emmanuel Eboue. He`d walk into practically every other team in the EPL yet he is content to be that special commodity managers & fans love – a team player who gets his head down , plays when & where asked & makes people smile.

    An Arsenal treasure.

  215. fabregas on spanish radio last night:

    “Now I know what I want and I want to play and nothing else.”

    http://www.tribalfootball.com/arsenal-captain-cesc-i-never-said-i-did-not-want-real-madrid-move-1132311

  216. Matt

    well done. post of the day stuff, that.

    we won the league at that shit hole, we won the league at white hart lane

  217. So if the Loaners want him anytime soon, they can prepare to enter a bidding(read: loaning) war with Madrid. Sounds like fun!

  218. One other thing I was thinking about, I thought if a defender was last man, and denied a clear goal scoring opportunity, it should be a red card?

    In which case, shouldn’t both Spuds defenders been sent off?

  219. Very nice Matt 🙂

  220. Matt, you will soon be seeing that in the ”related” column on THIS page..

  221. The customer reviews of that Zap, well the ones who gave it 1 star, are hilarious.

  222. After watching the game last night, i’m very impressed with Koscielny. The reason he impressed me is that he came on and played next to no experienced partner apart from a couple of pre- season games with Vermaelen yet he is doing so great on his own. That shows a lot of character and confidence which transfers to his teammates.
    Some will say Squillaci is experienced, yes, but not in the Premier League.

    Keep up the good work Koscielny, I don’t think any praise to Wenger for picking up these players and for these prices will ever be enough.
    ===

    The difference between their win and our win is we did it on their own turf and in front of their own fans. If they can ever accomplish that in the Emirates – not ever in my time I hope – then they can talk.
    ===

    It feels different this season, it feels that the reserves are now coming out of age. It feels that we actually have 60 or 70 players in our squad. Suddenly it feels OK if someone is injured, there is someone just as good to replace him, in a year’s time injuries won’t matter at all.

    Better days are coming Arsenal fans…much much better days.

  223. haha i know and the tottenham fans who complained about the DVD quality..

  224. Matt,

    Technically yes they should have both walked but it`s a toss up whether the refs apply the letter of the law (as was the case for TV against West Ham last season for instance) these days.

  225. Cmon you Iron!

  226. maybe we should just bring out a box set?

  227. My view on Keane’s goal is that Fabianski did very well to get down to it so quickly but then having done the hard part he made a hash of it by not getting a firmer hand on the ball. It sums him up really, you get flashes of greatness and some brilliant stops but then bizarre elementary errors that end up being all a lot of people focus on. I can only put it down to nerves as if he made those kind of mistakes daily in training there’s no way he’d be near the first team.

  228. 1 – 0 Scunthorpe!!

  229. Damn. Fluke equalizer

  230. I agree with Pauli Walnuts with regards to his comments on Eboue. He really can get into the best teams not only in EPL, but in Europe. Yet, his love for Arsenal clearly reflects in his decision to stay with us, even when he’s not a regular first team player. Big heart he’s got.

    And I really think he’s underrated. He’s a superb player, going forward. And decent defensively.

  231. Newcastle 2!

  232. Dreadful two footed off the ground challenge by some UTD scumbag on the Scunny skipper. No free kick no card. It was an assault.

  233. The Imperial Majesty of ,
    Emperor Emmanual Eboue,
    can not be questioned.

  234. The cross for RVP at 1:15 is one of my favourite goals of reent times. RVP christening the new stadium (in my eyes), with a little assist from Eboue.

  235. Love it Fins. When I think how idiots like Arseblogger used to incite people to hate him. What a skilful, committed, exciting, maverick he is. Exactly what any side needs – a total team player.

  236. I am a Spurs fan and I must admit, I consider it quite a compliment that Arsene completely abandoned his carling cup youth policy for the game against us yesterday. Most of the Arsenal line up were first teamers. Meanwhile Spurs had 5 players making their debut and a total of 10 changes from the team that played Wolves on Saturday. 2 of our players were not only making their Spurs debut but their English debut – Sandro and Pletikosa!

    I will admit the best team won on the night but the scoreline in the end was flattering. Considering it was 1-1 until the 92nd minute. The first penalty was not a penalty from where I was standing.

    At the end of the day it is a mickey mouse cup but it seems to have suddenly become a priority for Arsenal this season hence Wenger’s new first team policy. It just goes to show the fall from grace of a team that has not won anything for over 5 years.

    I can’t wait until the Premier league game when both sides (injury permitting) should be at full strength.

  237. Just shows how deep our squad is now if people think that was a strong line up.
    6 first teamers out injured – first choice first team players – and what was it? 8 or 9 changes from the team we put out in the prem on Saturday. I know danny you are trying to grab at straws but three of the ‘first teamers’ we fielded were just coming back from injury and there for the fitness, one of the ‘first teamers’ was in our youth team 5 minutes ago. Believe me that was our Carling Cup team.. We are that good.

  238. Newcastle 3!

  239. Oh and danny – were you even alive in ’61?

  240. Let us hope that the game today will do “wonders” for Chelseas confidence in the league!

  241. Haha – I knew we’d get one today. Daniel’s clearly still hurting.

  242. This whole Fabianski witch-hunt is just ridiculous isn’t it. It’s a bandwagon that is perpetuated by ill informed supporters and picked up upon by lazy fans who want to come across as ‘knowing their football’ as far as I can see.

    Unless you regularly attend Arsenal training sessions, don’t be slating players you have watched on telly or on some dodgy computer feed once a month. Opinions are fair enough but spiteful comments about players being crap and not being good enough to wear the shirt are unfounded and selfish. Let’s leave it up to the professionals to decide who is good enough and support their informed decisions. We all want to be Arsene’s number two but do it with a bit more dignity or you simply won’t be getting the phone call.

    Nearly takes the shine off that satisfying feeling of beating the spuds 4-1 at their own dump that I woke up with this morning and have carried around all day.

  243. Are chavski down to 10 men 3-1 down to Newscastle??? Loooool

  244. Damn it I jinxed it!! 3-2

  245. Daniel is definitely Muppet or someone on a wind up. I have read his post three times now and it gets funnier every time. The sort of subtle humour I enjoy, keep up the good work.

  246. I wonder what Joe thinks of Chelsea’s defence tonight.

  247. cmon newcastle not long now!

  248. Looks like the best manager Real Madrid never had is out of the Carling Cup. If only this had been a CL match, he’d definitely have won it.

  249. Looool liverpool 1-1 Northampton

  250. oh fucks sake newcastle its 3-3

  251. Man Shitty are losing 2-1!

  252. I don’t believe in the laws of jinx, but if they do exist, Maria and Zap, you are fine exponents 🙂

  253. That is no way a pen , you see the Chavs come up against a slightly better team and they wobble. Lovely

  254. HAHAHAHHAHAHAHHAHAHHAHAHAHHAHAHAHHA

  255. what do you think now matty boy!!

  256. Maria. I am blaming YOU.

  257. 4 Newcastle

  258. And the double reverse jinx works! 4-3 to Newcastle!

  259. I take full credit for Newcastle coming back into it of course 😉

    What a cracking game!

  260. Who was sent of for Chelsea?

  261. my stream keeps cutting out! ssn coverage from here on..

  262. Chelsea will splash the cash once their old men retire. from what I can see they have no youth coming through. Not good enough.

  263. Who was sent of for Chelsea?

    Nobody according to the BBC. Terry went off in the at half time though.

  264. Is the refree waiting for Chelsea to score or what?

  265. Thanks Matty.

    Just wondered as it says on the BBC text they were down to 10.

  266. Well done Newcastle!

  267. Fancy the mighty Chelsea letting in 4 goals in 1 game.

  268. Chelsea and Man City out, let’s hope the same goes for Liverpool.

  269. at home as well, dups!

  270. dupsffokcuf…..

    Chelsea used all 3 substitutes and then benayoun went off injured…hence playing with 10 men for around 30 mins

  271. California Gooner

    I’ve got to agree with the earlier comment thanking the Mexicans for suspending Vela for six months. Now, maybe, he can get down to work learning the lone-striker role. I don’t want to make too much of it, because Chamakh was coming on against tired defenders, but the quality gap seemed huge. Vela’s runs all seemed wrong and I can’t remember him getting in a dangerous position once in the entire game. Hopefully with a vacation from international football he can apply himself to learning that role.

  272. Yea quite funny that Zap.

  273. I think it was Kalou who was injured, no?

  274. kalou and benayoun got injured

  275. Yes Paul N…kalou got injured and was replaced by McEcahran…around the 50th min…the 3rd substitution

    Alex and Kalou replaced Terry and Kakuta…

    Benayoun got injured around the 64th…

    By the way…that McEcahran fella looks quite impressive.

  276. Thanks Arseman

  277. Chelsea played all these weak teams and everyone crowns them PL Champs.

    Silly people!

  278. Yes, Kalou was a sub, got injured, and was replaced by their last sub McEchran, before Benayoun got injured.

    Thanks Arseman – makes sense now.

  279. No problem Paul N….Chelsea were given a free penalty and a little over 6 minutes to come back into the game…im happy it wasn’t enough!

  280. So which muppet on Sky the other day said that Chelsea would win the Quadruple ?

  281. So Spuds and Chelsea out…its a good omen!

  282. So Chelsea have conceded more goals than us in the same number of games. I wonder if that means anything.

  283. Arseman, Can you believe people had the nerve to complain about our first pen yesterday!? Seriously look at the size of Alex!!!

  284. Drogba said they could win the quadruple.

  285. Ah Muppet, were you ‘Daniel’ from earlier? Had a good chuckle at that.

  286. CMON NORTHAMPTON

  287. Northampton Town 2!

  288. Paul N….agreed…that neanderthal went down as if he’d been shot!

  289. Liverpool 1-2 Northampton

  290. what a fantastic few days for all of us!!

  291. Zap…have you heard of a player called Ryad Boudebouz? I think hes Algerian…Scored an absolute cracker for Sochaux against Nice the other day…
    Anyone interested in Ligue 1 must check out the goals scored in that match…all candidates for goals of the season.

  292. Wow Liverpool are on the brink too. Great chance for us to nail this trophy. it will be a great morale booster for the young players. not a priority though.

  293. Hi Matty Boy,

    No.. I wasn’t Daniel. What a knob.

    Daniel – we can’t wait either to meet you again when both teams are at full strength. It will be when we avenge the freak 1 in a million goal you scored at Shite Hart Lane last year.

  294. Well well well… shitty, chavs and dippers all out or going out in the 3rd round.

    Maybe the press can turn their fire on these clubs and not subject us to all the bullshit we’ve been getting for only reaching the semis with our kids.

  295. City too????….this day just keeps getting better!

  296. Arseman of course! He was in the world cup too..played very well vs england.

  297. I suspect the bullshit will continue to be thrown our way. Fergie not bothering to attend the match tonight will probably get ignored as well. Imagine the headlines if that was Arsene.

  298. Zap..i tried to avoid watching England during the WC…but boy..he looks a real prospect for Algeria….and only 20.

  299. Omg…now it`s the mighty Liverpool at home.

  300. here’s the goal…btw

  301. 2-2 now

    Why do I do this shid??

  302. Matty Boy,

    Absolutely – Wenger would be accused of belittling the Micky Mouse Cup.

  303. Shall we make a DVD?….Shall we make a DVD?

  304. Maria go away!!

    lool im joking dont worry

    Arseman, wow thats a brilliant goal, and he certainly is a prospect for les fennecs, i hope they qualify for the ACN as i hope morocco do as well.

    Btw who is this chelsea player mchegegwan everyone is saying is so good?

  305. Zap,

    I am off, I can see FG fuming rigt now.

  306. Haha thats brilliant arseman, I love it, what a night..

    Wow I think im starting to feel sorry for liverpool now, 2-2 at home to northampton, and someone was telling me today how they will finish in the top 4..yeah..good luck with that, pool.

  307. penalties at anfield!

  308. Arseman- “shall we make a DVD” HA HA HA HA . that is going to be my ring tone

  309. 2 penalties missed on both sides

  310. Come on Northampton

  311. 3-2 northampton

  312. Liverpool miss penalty!

  313. Liverpool are out!

  314. YEEEEEEESSSSSSSSSSSSSSS

  315. if northampton score they go through

  316. Liverrpool are dumped

  317. what a night one upset after the other. This shows we have a better second string than all the top teams.

  318. Fantastic 24 hours for us, all told. Everybody cross fingers for a home draw for us next round. If we play at home, I back the kids against anyone.

  319. this is just…brilliant Mwahahaha!

  320. 1lc

    What struck me is is that normally our “mix-and-match” teams don’t work – but this time it did. Why do you think that was?

  321. this cup is between us and Manure now.

  322. great! now we have just manure for competition in CC

  323. Zap…You know Morocco is going to make it…with Chamakh, El Ahmadi, Basser Et all.

    Thanks for the updates!

  324. Wow, Quadruple, here we come!

  325. FG I think it may have annoyed our players listening to all the shit from the totts about how much better they were than us.

    Van der faart being the latest idiot.

  326. Arseman Maghrebia also have bousoffa el hamdaoui, taarabt, but the defence…is shocking, which is why they might not qualify

  327. Ok…im off! Glad you lot enjoyed the little video! Goodnight

  328. People please do not under estimate some of the teams left in the cup.

  329. yes it is 1lc i cant wait for the draw!

  330. Yea…if you guys can sort out your defense…u’ll be pretty much unstoppable…its a shame Taarabt signed on with the spuds though…hopefully he’ll get to show his skills at QPR….

  331. @ mj_gunner
    Naughty man. Ditto to what dups said about not underestimating any of the teams.
    Know ye not the curse of counting chickens? 🙂

  332. Fungunner-Wilshere Gibbs Lansbury Djourou Vela all have played in this competition so many times now they have experience. Ask any neutral they would know who Gibbs Wilshere are but the youngsters that came in for Chelsea Spuds Liverpool are unheard off. all that hard work and sticking with the kids policy for so many years is starting to show rewards. Wenger was mocked over the years but never doubted the kids we have. I feel this year we might get the rewards we deserve.

  333. Arseman- Taarabt is no longer a Spud which will please ZAP. He signed permanently for QPR

  334. well deserved rewards 1lc.

    Its great to know that we have done it the right way.

  335. dupps- Anyhing can happen but Manure and Arsenal are the 2 favorites without a doubt.

  336. nice! good for 3adel!

  337. Has any one heard about vela being banned for 6 months what do you guys make of it?!

  338. its so empty at the lane ..its so empty at the lane ..its so empty at the lane ..its so empty at the lane ..its so empty at the lane .. Shall we make a dvd …Shall we make a dvd …Shall we make a dvd …Shall we make a dvd …Shall we make a dvd …

  339. http://blogs.bettor.com/Tottenham-Hotspur-defender-accuses-Arsenals-Samir-Nasri-of-diving-a28959

    That Bassong guy is one funny chap, isn’t it? Clear for everyone to see that he tucked Nasri on his shirt and had some contacts with his legs, but obviously Bassong thinks otherwise.

  340. Its all part of growing up Zap, I’m sure Wenger will have a word with him, he just need to leave that nonsense to the soap opera that is Chelsea we don’t need that stuff. But it will not effect him he is enjoying his football this year.

  341. Btw. for yesterdays match, we actually out-youthed the Sp*ds. The average age for their first 11 was 23.81 and ours was 22.9.

  342. bradys right foot

    Been mulling over this, the first choice centre half partnership. I love the Verminator but being a fickle flousy I’ve developed a considerable man crush on Kozzer. Now Squllachi has the experience and had an impressive debut, its two from three and I know its early days but as a partnership Squillachi and Kozzer looks a great fit, does that mean the Verminator who hasn’t put a foot wrong for the Gunners is benched?

  343. When you havent won any silverware for 5 years then carling cup becomes more desirable. We’ve got to put some silverware in the cupboard. It is no good playing this beautiful football but not winning anything. The Arsenal fans are desperate to win something now and there are only so many trophies to go around. History books dont remember how many times your team passed the ball around the pitch they just remember winners.

  344. Bassong said he ” barely touched him” well that all you need to put someone off his strike when he is running at speed, Is he stupid or what? he had no business putting his hand on Nasri in the box it does not matter wether you grab him or not you make contact and its a pen. Simples. Clutching at straws really. excuses excuses

  345. 5 long hard years of hurt and i get the feeling that carling cup has our name on it this year…

  346. @ 1lc

    Yes, that must be it – the gap between the youth/reserves and the first team is not so great as it was.
    And quite right, about the penalty. Impeding the player is the foul, whether he then falls over or not.

  347. @ Mojo.
    In answer to your comment… 4-1.

  348. Good night, all.

  349. I’m afraid … afraid of what Kos might do to Drogba when he plays him. We might see the end of one of the greatest strikers of the last decade when he meets his master in Koscielny in a couple of weeks.

  350. Nolagunner:

    “I’m glad Mr Styles called you out on it, because you insulted every fellow fan who actually wanted to see Kos play before they formed an opinion on him. I have no idea why you think its superior to form an opinion that goes beyond Arsenal’s own assessment. Arsene and the staff will freely admit that one can’t be 100% sure a new signing will thrive in the EPL, no matter what the pedigree.”

    I think Koscielny came in under a shroud of negative expectations because the doomers wanted a big name and wouldn’t accept anything else. There are still people who will judge him based on what he does against Chelsea and United.

  351. I can remember several people in the blogosphere remarking that Kos shouldn’t be one of our two starting CBs simply because he lacks evidence and that Wenger should buy somebody else to partner Verm … before Kos had even played ONE game for us.
    Now, after a couple of games when we can look at some hard facts, it is obvious that Kos is the signing of the summer. There is no discussion to be had.

  352. Like Bacary Sagna, Koscielny won the Ligue 1 defender of the year before arriving in the summer. People are entitled to their doubts all they want, but I don’t see how Koscileny is any different than Vidic, Carvalho, Ivanovic or any defender that excelled in a lesser league before getting to the EPL. I think Koscielny was given the short end of the stick by supporters who were looking for a world cup hero to replace Gallas.

  353. Evil I must disagree, I believe Chamak will be the signing of the summer. He is going to be our number one striker for some time to come. Not that I think he is better than RVP, he will play far more games and thus score far more goals. Kos is a great signing dont get me wrong.

  354. You are correct. Chamakh might be the one who could beat Kos to the title, that is true. And he has a better value coming in at zero cost.

    Well, no matter from which point of view you see it: we have made only great signings this summer!

  355. I second that evil..

  356. Why am I still smiling from ear to ear?

    What a mid week Chavs out of their favourite cup. Spuds taught a lesson in wengerball and pool fans crying on the radio.

    Wonderful antidote to being don with the flu.

    Now on to the next one.

  357. Oh yeah, forgot to say thank you Mexico.

  358. >Wonderful antidote to being don with the flu.

    Maria needs some help with her suiperhero alter-ego. ‘Don with the Flu’ needs a bit of work – not quite as impressive as ‘Zorro, Masked Avenger’ but better than ‘Billy Jim Bob With The Red Wellingtons’.

  359. Mojo – you could not be more wrong when you say no one remembers the teams who play great football, only the winners. The Dutch teams of the mid to late seventies are everybody’s best remembered favourite teams and they lost both finals.
    Winning trophies is sweet and one dimension but as only one team can win the league and there are 90 odd sides competing there must be more to it don’t you think? Or the whole thing would collapse overnight.

  360. Steww – This group of players needs to win something. There is no doubt about that.

    If they don’t they will be remembered as a good football team with no steel (true or not, that is what people will think in 10 years time).

  361. Well I for one will remember the Wenger years for the stunning football not just the trophies. So you’re wrong there andy.
    Oh and I’m not alone in that.

  362. You are certainly not alone in that Stew.

  363. All well and good. I will remember the football as well. But I also want to remember this team as a successful one…..it would be criminal with the talent that this team has if it were not so.

    Unfulfilled potential is one of the biggest tragedies in life, and until this team win something that is exactly what it is.

  364. I still do not understand how we have been unsuccessful. Over the last decade Arsenal has changed beyond recognition. It is now one of the biggest clubs in Europe. That is success to me.

  365. Very true, but I mean success on the pitch. i.e. winning things.

    The very nature of competition is to finish 1st. To win thnigs. That is the mark of success in a sporting sense. Obviously soime clubs don’t have that aim and everything needs to be in persepctive, but as you point out we are one of the biggest clubs in Europe. This team no needs to produce trophies. Hell, even the players and manager are saying it. I will side with them thank you very much.

  366. Spot on steww @ 7:01 and 8:12am…

  367. Steww @7:01 –

    “The Dutch teams of the mid to late seventies are everybody’s best remembered favourite teams and they lost both finals”

    Quite a sweeping statement (everybodies best remembered). I would have though most people remember the 1970 winning Brazilian team. Great football, great players, won a trophy.

  368. Steww – you really think when the football historical stats books are updated there will be a special paragraph written in the middle of all the facts and stats saying: Arsenal 2005-2010 they played pretty football. The only people that remember the football are the people that were there and new generations who were not alive to see them teams just see stats. They won or they didnt win. At the moment no matter which you dress it up we have been on a barren run without a trophy to our name for 5 years. There is no guarantee this will end this year. Could be 6 and counting unless Wenger changes some of his philosophies (which he appears to be doing in carling cup). Worst thing is we could have won carling cup numerous times over past 5 years were it not for the manager!

  369. Steww – you really think when the football historical stats books are updated there will be a special paragraph written in the middle of all the facts and stats saying: Arsenal 2005-2010 they played pretty football. The only people that remember the football are the people that were there and new generations who were not alive to see them teams just see stats. They won or they didnt win. At the moment no matter which way you dress it up we have been on a barren run without a trophy to our name for 5 years. There is no guarantee this will end this year. Could be 6 and counting unless Wenger changes some of his philosophies (which he appears to be doing in the carling cup). Worst thing is we could have won carling cup numerous times over past 5 years were it not for the manager!

  370. dups,

    For some success is measured only with trophies.. Not the other aspects of the club..

    When we consider every aspect of the club, the last 10 years for me have been the most successful era in the club’s history after the Champan era of 1925-1935. We have got a brand new modern stadium with 60000seats instead of 38000(no disrespect to Highbury, I still miss Highbury). Our club have grown from a big English club to a big European club. Our brand of football is praised by neutrals and some other club’s supporters as well as the right way to play football.. What more do one need to achieve success??

    The last 5-years was all about building a squad with not a lot of money to spend and an assembly line in the form of the academy. In spite of the restrictions, we have done very well and with luck would have already had won a trophy or 2. The ride was an awesome one. The team is ready, the potential is there and it wont be long before silverware find their way. Lets just get behind the team and be the 12th man which they need to reach the final line.

  371. The Carling Cup really is a chance of winning something now. Only Manure are left from “the big teams”.

    Although “only” the CC, it could be the springboard the club need. We are well set up to dominate for a sustained period, the sooner we start winning things the better. Once the 1st is in the bag more will follow I am sure of it.

  372. “Worst thing is we could have won carling cup numerous times over past 5 years were it not for the manager!”

    LOL! Where do you start with a statement like that?

  373. So let’s sack Wenger and bring in Ramos. Sperz won the cup with him as manager.

  374. we could win the double if we had sam allardyce instead of wenger.

  375. Seriously, who cares about the CC? If we hadn’t drawn against Sunderland I’m pretty sure we’d have seen a much younger team in Tuesday.

    As it turned out, we needed to regain some momentum, and gave ourselves the best chance of giving the whole club a lift by fielding a strong side against our local rivals.

    I want to see youngsters again in the next round though – unless we draw Manure.

  376. Mojo,
    I’m from the 80’s era but my all-time favorite national squad were the Dutch team of the 70s. They didnt won the world cup even though they reached 2 consecutive finals of 74 and 78. The reason I love them is the football they played.

    Moreover, its not just the stats that are available for the new generation. You get video archives as well. Watching the videos of the 74 and 78 world cup about 15years back was what made the Dutch squad of that era my all-time favorite..

  377. OOU,

    Its highly unlikely we’ll draw ManUre in the next round. Considering the last few years campaign, My guess would be an away trip to the few premier league teams left.

  378. If we did get a mention in the historical stat books very few would know about it. Who the fuck reads historical stat books? Proper sports writers, and more importantly proper football fans will talk about and remember the Arsenal team of the last few years as one that beat almost every team in the league on a weekly basis, challenged for the league multiple times (and in challenging made the Premiership far more of a spectacle for the neutral), played class, quick, entertaining football, scored a tonne of beautiful goals many of which will live long in the memory, and fought for England and London in Europe at the highest level, season after season. Arsenal are like a giant sparkling golden cannon in the football zeitgeist already.

  379. Oh well, everyobody has their own view on things.

    I just hope some of our players don’t share your view.

  380. Limpar – More likely people will unfortunatly talk about the period when Manure and the Chavs completetly dominated the lge.

  381. I was thinking the exact same thing watching JW on Tuesday night. It feels like it’s just a matter of time before something happens to him. And if it does happen (please no), nothing will change.

    Anyone see the terrible article about us on the Independent site?

  382. Wilshere really did take a kicking the other night. His has a nasty side to him as well (which I like), so credit to him for keeping calm.

  383. “Limpar – More likely people will unfortunatly talk about the period when Manure and the Chavs completetly dominated the lge.”

    In the future – with all the financial regulations firmly in place – when they come to make 2005-2010 compilation clip it will be soundtracked by The Who’s “Won’t Get Fooled Again”.

  384. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-11380291

    I love the way our club is run. We have clever clever people in charge and the direction our club is going in will truely leave an unattainable benchmark for most clubs out there

  385. OOU – Heh, you could be right.

  386. The only people that remember the football are the people that were there and new generations who were not alive to see them teams just see stats.

    Maybe we should play badly then so that not only would we have no trophies we’d have no memories of good football to hold on to?

  387. Nice article link, Gadget.

  388. Wenger changed his policy for this carling cup game which was a massive compliment to Spurs. The fear of Spurs winning caused the man to abandon his philosophy.

    Now that my gooner friends says it all…

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