WBA Preview: Let’s Finish A Good Week With A Great Win

The announcement of record profits for the club yesterday completed a decent week, the only cloud being the points dropped at Sunderland. Based on this morning’s exchange rate of £1 = €1.173, Arsenal’s turnover beat Real Madrid’s by €3.5m for the same period. It means that Arsenal is at the moment, the biggest football club in the world, until United and Barcelona post their results at least.

What matters is that of those clubs, Arsenal is the most profitable. In itself, the size of that profit does not matter; the business strategy which underpins the financial results is the key. The club is well run, a belief beyond dispute, and is living well within its current means. Even stripping the profitability of the property development from the results, the bottom line was more than double that of the Spaniards. As Uefa’s regulations begin to tighten, Arsenal is one of the clubs which has the least adjustments to be made.

For that, the Board and manager deserve credit. Wenger noted the inherent hypocrisy of football:

We make a profit because we don’t spend – it’s as simple as that. What is unbelievable is that people reproach me for making a profit but no-one says a word about people who lose money. I manage in a safe way – but it looks like we are in a business where the quality is to lose money.

With the number of clubs operating unsustainable business models, quite rightly Arsenal should be held up as the example. The progress of youngsters in England is a subject of heated debate yet not practically implemented with any success outside of Arsenal. Despite having three of the countries most talented youngsters, Wenger is consistently derided. As he observed yesterday, he is in a no-win situation:

you [the media] reproach me for not buying players but if I buy players Jack Wilshere doesn’t come out into the first team. You cannot have everything and I know that and I’m long enough in the job to have a development policy to educate the players. The most difficult thing is to play them and to stand up for it.

Nobody else in the world [brings through as many young players]. I’ll give you one day the list of those at the top level who have made careers with me and you will see. You will be absolutely astonished.

The production of young players has to be sustained for it to be successful. Nobody can argue that Ferguson was successful in bringing one generation through but few of any note since, certainly none who benefitted the national team. Arsenal appears to be in better shape, the proof of which will be seen in years to come.

On the pitch, West Bromwich arrive seeking their first league victory at Arsenal since 1983. Not many fixtures between the two sides have taken place due Albion’s yo-yo nature, two draws in 1986 and 2004 their best results. Arsenal has hosted this fixture five times in summers past, winning all of them.

For this afternoon’s fixture, the impact of Tuesday’s extra time may yet be costly. Rosicky and Eboue picked up knocks in the drubbing of Tottenham although Abou Diaby may return to the bench following his lay-off. Fabregas and Walcott are both targetting the Chelsea match next weekend whilst Alex Song’s suspension was served on Tuesday.

Defensive changes are limited with Thomas Vermaelen not yet recovered and Keiran Gibbs suffered a bruised foot having bruised the pride of the over-hyped Aaron Lennon. It means that the back four will be as you were from last weekend.

Key this afternoon will be finishing Albion off once a lead has been established. Even going down to ten men, there were enough opportunities to do so at Sunderland, penalty and other misses proved costly in the end. The gap to Chelsea is four points, a win and favourable result at Eastlands this lunchtime can see that halved at least.

The team I would expect this afternoon is:

Almunia; Sagna, Squillaci, Koscielny, Clichy; Denilson, Wilshere, Song; Arshavin, Chamakh, Nasri

The visitors have yet to score away from home, conceding seven goals in their two games. Arsenal has the opportunity to add considerably to that scoreline and finish the week on an even bigger high.

Enjoy the match wherever you are watching it. ’til Tomorrow.

Posted on September 25, 2010, in Arsenal, Football, Premier League, Soccer and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 422 Comments.

  1. I agree with YW

  2. The Doomer's Family

    I agree with Muppet

  3. Fourth!

  4. and I agree with The Doomer’s Family

  5. As the song goes, ‘ I second that emotion’. Today should be a great one and I hope to be coming home with complete joy at witnessing a job well done.

    As YW says, my only concern will be any signs of tiredness that result from Tuesday’s added exertions. Our pass and move game suffers worst of all (a la Sunderland) when there is no real movement. That apart, the suggested squad should be able to get the job done.


  6. Sunderland were at home and memories of beating us last year must have spurred them on. Today will surely be a different story.
    Arsene is keen we don’t underestimate le Baggies and I’m sure we won’t. Squad rotation will deal with tired legs I’m sure.

  7. YW

    I agree with your selection except that Denilson will be on the bench. At the moment, the Brazilian is behind, Song, Diaby, Nasri, Wilshere and Rosicky for the middle job. He will be further behind when Ramsey recovers. Seems he’s stagnated in his development, no quantum leap.

  8. Delia-----Block 112

    Just off to catch my train . I fully expect a convincing win and everything crossed we don’t pick up any more injuries. I expect Vela and maybe JET to get on in the latter stages ,when tired legs from Tuesday catch up with Nasri and Jack.

  9. Great post YW.

    I’d go with your lineup too. Jack’s gonna get a goal today i reckon. Can’t wait to see more wengerball!!

    5-0 to the Arsenal.


  10. Just read that Fabianski thought Keane’s shot was weak and he should have saved it… Hmmmm… Ole & a few others don’t agree with you Lukasz.


  11. As much as i would love an Arsenal win,i don’t think we should underestimate these albion team cos few of their games i’ve seen have been good after all they defeated man shitty in midweek and that could serve as a morale booster.

  12. Have a feeling that Lansbury, Thomas and Eastmond will get a chance today. And Vela may start. Have this feeling that Wenger may treat it as a reverse Carling cup encounter. The Spurs match was too important to risk the kids but we have the measure of WBA! Mix two of the kids in each half with the regulars and we are still home and dry. The first teamers also need a break before the Partizan match. But don’t crucify me if I’m wrong. 4-0 to the Arsenal.

  13. While I don’t want to give ‘African Fan’ the satisfaction of rising to his comments about Denilson, you sir are incorrect.

  14. If wenger is a nutter what does that make Redknapp? hummmmm……

  15. African Fan is Howard’s new guise I expect.

  16. F*ck it. i forgot that I am a yes man. I agree with Steww, Muppet and the Doomer family.

    Plus I remain royally pissed that certain posters, who will remain unnamed, simply never learn from their long history of pre-maturedly judging a player without acknowledging that the coaches at Arsenal have infinitely more knowledge about the subject than they do. I never saw the game with the Spuds, but there was a predictable Pavlovian response by those to the reported “mistake” by Fabianski. Apparently the boy did well otherwise according to none other than AW but the know-it-alls were in overdrive to say I told you so. It is ridiculous to the extreme.

    They then have the gall to describe those who object to this type of behavior as “yes” men when they in fact take their cue from elsewhwere.The knee-jerk assessment of Fabianski (and Almunia for that matter) is the the domain of the tabloid media and the AAA blogs. There is where the meme Arsenal cannot win without a world-class keeper began and remains to this day. It is where the fence-sitters (fencies or fancies according to ZP) take comfort waiting with baited breath for a cock-up by Almunia to confirm their worst expectations. Well I have news for them, Al and fabi will have a cock-up or two. That is the nature of football but that won’t make them bad keepers.

    But then that is too much thinking for yes men.

  17. YW, do you have any idea how much there’s left to develop/sell at the Highbury Development..? Is there a chance that when it’s all completed the club would be in a position to make a serious dent in the stadium mortgage…?

  18. My excitement level is so high at the moment..
    Looking forward to a great CC draw, the chavs defeat and an outstanding performance at the Emirates..
    I disagree with African fan concerning Denilson.. If (big IF) Arsenal ever get a fully fit squard at anytime in the season, I think Deni will get to play against the more technical teams like in the CL..He has this rare ability of making the midfield tick even with simple back passes..I think injuries have set him back, but that goes for half of the Arsenal first team.

  19. No Geo – I also don’t agree with LF – because he is super self critical and I am a fan. I want to support and encourage him whereas he is honest and brutal in his self assessment.
    It’s so simple …

  20. @ geo….

    he should have done betters definately another way of saying he should have saved it or am i missing something there?

    What the argument was about was whether it therefore translated to being called a goalkeeper error or howler or whatever other grand term is used to describe it.


  21. DO WE EVER GET A HOME DRAW IN ANY DOMESTIC CUP?! Seriously, 100% knew it was gonna be us after Newcastle at St James came out first. Knew.

  22. @ vince…LOL. am sure we have had quite a few home draws for the domestic cups

  23. Ipswich v Northampton

    West Ham v Stoke

    Man Utd v Wolves

    Leicester v West Brom

    Aston Villa v Burnley

    Wigan v Swansea

    Birmingham v Brentford

    Newcastle v Arsenal

  24. this phrase from the BBC update truly funny. LOL

    “Here we go. Manchester City get the ‘clash of the cash’ started. Who is your money on?”

  25. people, I will need a stream. One day I’ll get me a season ticket. Until then the internets will do!

    Here’s a question. If Chelsea & man city get into a massive brawl and both have sufficient players sent off leading to the match being cancelled, do they both get a point for the draw, or do they get nothing?

  26. Gadget.

    The score at the time the match is abandoned stands.

    That would be a damn good brawl though.

    And incidentally, the match will be abandoned if a team has 5 players sent off.

  27. I think Newcastle away will be a good test for the Carling cup team we send to the north east.

    Nobody said the path to a Carling cup trophy will be paved with unsuspecting lower league opposition.

  28. if there was a brawl Tevez would go straight for Terry, too much bad blood between those two.

    My money would be on Tevez too

  29. How Mikel just got away with that without a yellow is beyond me!

  30. @ gadget

    that being what?

  31. Great post today. When I read the quotes from Arsene, I almost stood up and applauded. He speaks about educating players, I have a sneaking suspicion he is having a dig at the media because it is of course most of them who need to be educated, on matters of finance within football. With their obsession of buying superstar players, and smashing transfers records, isn’t it refreshing that it’s our manager who is the one to teach them responsibility.

    It’s funny that the BBC refer to the game today as the ‘clash of the cash’ but in a way it’s also quite scary. Sky billed it earlier as the clash of the Northern gangsters against the Southern gangsters, with an Italian mobster theme. Again it’s amusing but we really need a change of attitude towards these clubs before football consumes itself.

  32. Just taking a break from the turgid tedium of the Chelski game. How Bill can watch this week in week out is beyond me.
    Thank God I support Arsenal instead.

  33. It’s interesting that on 3 separate occasions on the commentary Manchester United have been mentioned as the team 2nd to Chelsea on the table who will benefit from the Chavs dropping points.

    I wasn’t aware United had pipped Arsenal to 2nd spot…or maybe it’s just an illustration that none of these monged out idiots even consider Arsenal will stay where they are and even improve. It’s almost like we’re an inconvenient nuisance to the narrative that only Chelsea and United are title contenders.

  34. how the F*CK does manure always get home fixtures is beyond me

  35. Well, Manure choose the fixtures themselves, just like Rednose accused Chelsea of pickign their easy league start this year.

  36. I am afraid, newcastle away will be a real challenge for our youngsters, as DS said. Wenger has to mix it up once again. Anyone knows when it it played?

  37. Wolves played their 2nd team at OT last season in EPL, what would they play in the mickey mouse cup, I wonder

  38. Loving Chelsea’s new devotion to stylish football. It really shines through when they meet a side in the top fifteen.

  39. goal – TEVEZ!

  40. for so many reasons it really would be the most rightous of things if arsenal take top spot over chelsea et al this year.

    maybe this easy run of games for them has made them too comfortable. cruise control does not seem to work against teams with a touch of ambition. they really lack invention if drogba can be contained.

  41. 1404: GOALFLASH Man City 1-0 Chelsea (Tevez)

    Cool or what!

  42. Ladies & Gents, we’re getting a lot closer to that 22 man brawl at City! Since the Tevez goal both teams are going in really hard in the tackle.

  43. fair play to tevez, completely carries a team of very expensive players. did fergie ever admit to his mistake? I would love to see that on camera.

  44. I tell you what though, neither of these sides can touch us in terms of keeping the ball moving through congested areas.

  45. Vince – LOL.

  46. Tevez drove 4 horses and carriages through the Chelsea defense. What a poor goal to concede.

    Joe and Bill will be disappointed, especially with Cashley.

  47. word

    Fergie didn’t make a mistake. United couldn’t afford to keep Tevez at the transfer fee price and wages.

    It’s a fallacy to suggest that he let him go. United are broke, plain and simple.

  48. I disagree that Tevez carries Citeh. He’s a great focal point but De Jong’s superb for them and does a job wherever he has to play, also Silva’s been improving with every game this season. I hate to say it but they look a lot better in defence without King Kolo, once again Arsene’s the master of knowing when a player’s past his best.

  49. United’s dominance seemed to coincide with them not having the luxury of gambling money on players who turn out to be flops. Chelsea this season? Hope so.

  50. Well done Carlos.

    Fun isn’t it, OOU? Three defensive midfielders aside. It’s like two old lobsters with their claws clipped trying to have a go at each other. The Italian influence? Whatever it is it’s dull as dishwater. Compare it to the exuberance and entertainment on offer in Arsenal’s central midfield.

    David Pleat on 5Live: “Can I use the word ‘boring’?”

  51. City fans singing ‘one greedy bastard’ to Daniel Sturridge. That’s rich coming from them 🙂

  52. That’s ‘rich’ Matt? Was that pun intended?

  53. Limpar….LOL!

    David Pleat in commentary doesn’t really make your socks roll up and down, does it?

  54. Arsenal team: Almunia, Sagna, Koscielny, Squillaci, Clichy, Song, Diaby, Nasri, Eboue, Chamakh, Arshavin. Subs: Rosicky, Vela, Denilson, Wilshere, Djourou, Fabianski, Emmanuel-Thomas

  55. Someone is going to get a red card in this game – maybe through a double yellow….

  56. I’m ashamed to say it was intended Vince, I just couldn’t resist.

  57. This is how fukin boring this game is, I actually decided to go and watch he’s just not that into you with the missus!!

  58. Is it only me or are Chelsea running out of players? Who are these players they’re using as substitutes.

    And we are told their squad is strong?

    Watching this game is painful.

  59. oops Arsenal team: Almunia, Sagna, Koscielny, Squillaci, Clichy, Song, Diaby, Nasri, Eboue, Chamakh, Arshavin. Subs: Rosicky, Vela, Denilson, Wilshere, Djourou, Fabianski, Emmanuel-Thomas

  60. I wonder if Ancelotti will get slaughtered for taking off Drogba the same way Benitez did last year when he took Torres off that time. I can’t remember which game it was, I just remember Gerrard looking utterly baffled as if someone had just asked him to do some basic addition.

  61. Great post Yogi…love it when Wenger slaps the press around for their ridiculous stance on…well…just about everything.


  62. Darius,

    The substitutes Chelsea are making doesn’t show their lack of depth. They are giving chances for their young players to mature…

    Only when its Arsenal, it ‘lack of depth’..

  63. HAHA! Look at what Ade’s been reduced to, five minute cameos in games where his team are trying to hold a lead and might need some extra height defending set pieces. You mug.

  64. at the time i felt like fergie was being too bloody proud, he just didn’t want to bow to the pressure from fans and media and be forced to swallow the 30m price tag from dodgy 3rd partiy agents. obviously a lot of money but strikers like him are pretty rare and im sure that privately he rues the decision not call ocean finance just one more time.

    Tevez provides the cutting edge a hell of a lot of the time. gotta be worth over 12 points a season. the pychological advantage of him scaring the bejesus out of defenders adds some all important weight also. man city are starting to play better but still a smash and grab team at the moment. tevez is crucial to their campaign in my opinion.

  65. Adebadbuy….took the c*nt 3 seconds to get caught offside.

  66. My take is that Chelsea’s wheels have started coming off – and the honeymoon of their walkover fixtures are over.

    I think there’s a chance Chelsea will lose to Marseille, Arsenal, Villa – and that will be 5 games on the trot that they lose.

  67. Millionaires plaything 0 – 1 Billionaires whim.

    Great result for us!

  68. Diaby is back…. Lil Jack on bench…

    Team: Almunia, Sagna, Koscielny, Squillaci, Clichy, Song, Diaby, Nasri, Eboue, Chamakh, Arshavin.

    Subs: Rosicky, Vela, Denilson, Wilshere, Djourou, Fabianski, Emmanuel-Thomas

  69. Happy days!

  70. Come on The Arsenal.

  71. His co-commentator described Tevez’s haircut as ‘brutal’. As if someone had been at his favourite Barbie with a pair of scissors.

  72. Great start to the weekend.. Now for us to get a 4-nil or more win to make the weekend better..

  73. the good news is thomas is fit.

  74. karim, Even King Eboue is fit and in the starting line-up..

  75. Sorry I got the teams mixed up, it should have been:

    Billionaires plaything 1 – 0 Millionaires whim (City were the home team).

    My apologies.

    Thanks for the team news IndianGooner, looking forward to watching some exciting football now after that.

  76. Arsenal.

  77. Right, time for me to start begging people for decent streams. Anyone?

  78. Anyone else having problems with Sopcast?

  79. Good post Yogi:

    Man City took down Chelsea. Chelsea is certainly not as deep as they have been. I was shocked they took Drogba off. If Chelsea have the injuries that they did last year they will be in trouble. We should win 3 – 0 and be back within 1 point of the Chavs.

    I still do not see City as a real challenger for the title this year. Hopefully their squad will not come together. United has been terrible in defense so far this year. Ferdinand is no longer and impact player and EVDS is 40. Can never discount United, they look like they can score lots of goals but they will end up 3rd or worse if they do not get their defending back in order.

  80. fukin el just erd tevez speak, normally he just gets put back in his cage straight after a game.

  81. its a great looking line-up, but do I see worrying signs for Denilson?

  82. commentator on espn here
    ”sometimes even great sides can have off days”

  83. Was the WBA manager requesting Arsene to tell his team to score few goals??

  84. soppy channel 82153.

  85. did our stupid fans boo fabianski?

  86. What a boring game.

  87. Darius @ 2:38:

    I hope you are right. I am not sure the wheels are coming off just yet but certainly the lack of depth is a crack in their armour. Next weeks game at the Bridge will be huge. If we can get a point or win at their house we have will make a great statement. I hope Cesc can play.

  88. Those streams working?

    Espn Asia has gone nuts. Who wants to see a 7th position team (liverpool) play, over Arsenal? Fucking ridiculous!!

  89. liverpool are so shite their tv channel is free.

  90. Why did the ref blew when he should have played advantage??? Nasri was through for an one-on-one…

  91. have a shot chamack! Free kick, bend this f*cker in Nasri.

  92. Play the fucking advantage ref!

  93. @Ateeb, they are shpwing champions league t20 semi final, on star cricket & espn. Same match on both…

  94. Agreed iniangooner, should have let us play.

  95. Our passing from the hasn’t clicked yet.

  96. Our passing from the back hasn’t clicked yet.

  97. get in, ahahhahaha, post nooooooooooooooo

  98. Liking the game even though We’re playing well.. Absence of the ‘rugby tackles’ making it pleasing to watch..

    And as I write, what a cross from the King!!!

  99. AA twice off the post!

  100. WBA where lucky

  101. It’s coming

  102. Fox Sucker Channel but stream is not too bad.

  103. stream pleaaasseeee!!!

  104. firstrow.net

  105. Toto, what a great open field tackle.

  106. Is it coincidence that most of Kos’s and Squill’s interception finds a red shirt???

  107. Ateeb, get your sopcast up and type 82153 in the address bar.

  108. great save Al!

  109. dear god

  110. Gr8 save from Big Al!!!

  111. great save by super Al turned a shoot

  112. West Ham one up.

  113. w ham 1 0 totts

  114. ahahahahha, of course, we are dominating the game and then this happens, save it

  115. Take That@

  116. WBA penalty, and a great save super Al.

  117. he is a god at pks

  118. Big Al!!!!!!!!! Gr8 penalty save…

  119. Ha! Take that sly spots tossers! Willing a WBA goal a red for Big Al!

  120. Take That!

  121. aluminiummmmmmmmmmm

  122. This is what I hate about football so bloody unpredictable!!!

  123. Brilliant Moony.

  124. The crowd is getting behind the team now… Big Al has got the crowd going…

  125. We look asleep at the wheel today…Arsene needs to give them a talking to at the half.

  126. Great stuff Alumnia.

    This Odemwingie is very, very fast!!

  127. We need to step up, cause WBA are playing well.

    Come on the Gunners.

  128. Cesc did not look happy.

  129. I would like to see Nasri drop deeper while bringing on Vela in the forward line.

  130. Could use a spark from one of Wilshire or Rosicky as well…need some more creative play.

  131. It’s coming. WBA can’t keep this up.

  132. @fastforward That stream’s flawless mate, cheers!

  133. Perhaps Vela for Eboue instead…Eboue does not look up for it today…

  134. I have a feeling we will see a different team after the half…

  135. Eboue must be knakcered after 120 mins vs the spuds! Nasri too.

  136. just got back from work…how have we been playing? updates please!

  137. Arsene didn’t look best pleased. I think we will come out a different team after the tea and oranges break.

  138. Well organised play by WBA.
    Fair play to them.

  139. Doesnt look good judging by your comments!

  140. Something is not working in the midfield today.

    Throw on Rosicky and Vela.

  141. WBA have been solid and are working hard. But as we have seen before, we should be able to get more joy when they tire.

  142. Arseman – not the best half from us although we had some chances early on. Almunia saved a penalty being the main talking point really.

  143. Second half we will be much better. There is no way we play another 45 minutes like that. :-\

    I imagine we’ll see a sub or two soon. Definitely a few guys looking a bit out of sorts still following the spuds game.

  144. Either its the link or we look fatigued today

  145. It just needs us to be a bit quicker in the pass.
    And some width. We have’nt made them work for it yet.

  146. Thanks Matty Boy….im sure arsene will sort it out during half time…we’ve got to win this one

  147. SomeRandomGunner

    Awful performance so far. I just cant see from where Arsenal goal is going to come. I think we should give ourself some space by not pushing so much.

  148. it must be the link mj_gunner

  149. I agree steww. WBA seem to be pressing, but they seem to be tiring too.

    We just need to wake up, put more energy into our performance. Chamakh and Arshavin are playing well.

    I want an assist or a goal from Clichy. It would do the boy some good

  150. Thank you Almunia for saving that.we are slow today,we have to do better 2nd half.wba arent sitting back and are currently ahead on possession.

  151. I don’t think there is any cause for concern. We will threaten more in the 2nd half and the breakthrough will come, I have no doubts about that. Great save from Almunia to keep us level at the break.

  152. WBA are looking pretty good, but we’ve been giving the ball away too much and struggling to find the right pass. WBA will probably tire but it’s not easy on my nerves leaving it late to wrap up the points.

    Also we have looked like we could concede on 3 or 4 occasions already, so an early goal for us in the second half will do wonders for putting WBA on the backfoot. I feel once we get one, we’ll probably knock in a couple more. But let’s get that one please, soon :).

  153. Song & Diaby aren’t making themselves available for the defence, to take the ball forward..

  154. I have to say though, there is something scarily familiar about our performance. It reminds me of the Wigan game. It feels like too many players in the team think we’ve got the points already.

  155. Arseman it’s nowhere near as bad as it sounds people are just tense when the match is on. we’ll be fine.

  156. Arseman –

    Arsenal are letting Albion play. Not enough penetration.

  157. I think we will come out and get an early goal. The problem for me is that a midfield of Eboue, Diaby, and Song is just lacking some creativity…Diaby seems a little of off the pace as well…understandable given the fact that he has been recovering from the Robinson assault.

  158. It could be worse, but for Super Al.

  159. Don’t look sharp enough. probably hangover from the cc game

  160. Also Arshavin, Chamackh and Sagna should have scored IMO.

  161. I could see Vela/Rosicky, or Vela/Denilson coming on around the 60 minute mark.

  162. The crowd need to get into this, 12th man and all.

  163. Wow, Liverpool 2-1 down at home to Sunderland.

  164. Seems like Albion have got their tactics bang on. But we’ve got enough players to cause them trouble!

  165. steww is right. If we win this I probably won’t even remember tomorrow we had a subpar first half.

    Still going for 3-0 to Arsenal :).

  166. Come on Arsenal! Let’s win this.

  167. Sid, and their goal was extremely contentious. Should really be 2-0 to Sunderland in that one.

  168. Is it just me or does it seem like a lot of people are slipping on the pitch??

  169. Taeryn, well the ref is S Atwell, the incompetent fool who reffed our game.

    Oh fuck!

  170. Is this going yo be one of those days??

  171. we got to find a way to pull out a win in this hang over game. most of the guys are tired from the not stop schedule over the past few weeks. Grind this WIN out arsenal!!

  172. Looks like we are doing it the hard way again then

  173. Deserved.

  174. Oh COME ON! We need Deni and Rosicky on, this is a nightmare. Can’t drop points on a day where Chelsea have.

  175. Oh I shouldn’t have jinxed it.

  176. Diaby, please track the fuck back rather than just watching.

  177. fuck me

  178. Vince… and can’t be dropping points against West Brom of all teams!?

    Still plenty of time, but this has not looked good.

  179. Wow…we look completely disinterested

  180. 2-0

    F*** THIS!!!!

  181. No fucking way!

  182. you got to be kidding me.

  183. Oh sweet lord.

  184. Diaby and Eboue need to come off ASAP!!!!

  185. How’s that for your howler!…fuck me…what a joke. Just when you think we have matured and are beyond results like this…

  186. 2 mins, two goals.

  187. Now we start playing.

  188. aye, 1st error from big al!

    Alright, so now let’s wake up. we’ve give them a level playing field

  189. I don’t get it we are playing like shit!

  190. This is going to be a hell of a comeback now.

  191. Diaby and Eboue have been pretty much non existent today

  192. Come on Arsenal!

  193. High time we woke up

  194. Denny will steady our midfield

  195. Un-fucking-believable

  196. Come on Arsenal.

  197. Steady is not what we need. We need creativity, pace, imagination. We need to make our move now. Jack and Rosicky on now. Than Vela.

  198. Have we now Nasri embargo?

  199. I think Jack’s shorts are too big for him. He keeps having to pull them up.

  200. I think the midfield has been lacking. But the two subs have made a difference. we look lively now.

  201. just hope its not to late.. some of the players should be ashamed of themselves, they should be good enough to take responsibility and win this game. They should also know that Jack and Rosicky was rested due to hard matches next week.


  202. Come on Arsenal.
    All out attack.

  203. Fair play to wba, they’re defending really well

  204. Arsenal are so used to play against teams that refuse to play football agains them so when a team comes to Emirates and actually tries to play footy we loose.

    We cannot tacke that teams try our own game against us it seems.

    We have made WBA loo like a great team today…

  205. Gadget…yea they are…im in shock.

  206. embarrasment

  207. game over!

  208. Fuck!!! Over… The team didnt turn up at al…

  209. Freak result. They happen. Grow a spine it’s a long season folks.

  210. i feel sorry for the fans

  211. one back. come on.

  212. Just hope its not late… Come on… Nasri shd have 2 now..

  213. We have looked right fucking pathetic today,, very very embarrassing indeed.

  214. Nassri

  215. Go fuck yourself steww, you wanker.

  216. To be honest I don’t know how we do this?

  217. 1-3 Nasri….Can someone tell me what’s happening????We’ve 15 mins to get another 3?..Has anybody bar Nasri turned up today?

  218. Well done WBA, they deserve it.

    We’ve been poor and my half time mouth seems way too prophetic. Wigan I said, Wigan it is.

    Eboue is still the King. Played a long game midweek, but Diaby was terrible today with little in the way of excuses.

    We are a much better team than this. This is a bad day. A win in mid-week and a slaughtering of Chelsea is the medicine.

  219. God…i wish i would,ve stayed a work…a couple of hours of work woud be better than watching this.

  220. i cannot watch this, it makes me feel sick. it is such a poor display its insane.

    I know its a long season and all that, but you expect a team like arsenal to altest play 50% of what they can in every match.

  221. I feel sorry for my family. Going out for a very long walk now.

  222. To be honest, losing today is a great time in the season to lose.

    I am annoyed but I’ rather lose now to WBA, and have it serve as an open wound, a reminder to the players not to underestimate anyone, then late on in the season, a loss to end our title run.

    We all know we’re better than this, so my belief is still firm.

  223. my computer switched off, & when I switched it back on, swishh!!

  224. Well, i think the keepers will take the blame as usual;but the real culprits were the midfielders. They offered no protection to the back four.

  225. Our average 1st half performance spilled over in to the 2nd and by the time we play properly it’s too late. It’s a shame but not a disaster. WBA deserve credit for their endeavor.

  226. Five men in the box and you don’t cross it.

    Lack of responsibility.

  227. Besides Barca lost to Hercules, so c’est la vie.

    ALthough you know we’ve stopped playing when the triangles aren’t appearing

  228. Dropping down to earth painfully.

  229. Gadget, i want to agree with, but the loss is inexcusable really!! We need to remain positive though as it is a long season. Credit to WBA.

  230. WBA deserve today’s win. They did a Hull on us today.

    Wenger should dock some wages this week.

  231. Agree with CSO & Matty

  232. Yesssssssss
    5 mins left, lets have it.

  233. You guys crediting WBA can you keep that to tomorrow’s post.

  234. Suer Nasrii…

    Another one will do now..

  235. Hehehehe…my reserve jinx worked.

  236. LOL @ mj_gunner

    maybe you broke our rythmn

  237. come on,ya rabi

  238. Fair play to Sammy. He has been immense this week.

  239. Alright boys we’ve got 5mins to tear ’em apart!

  240. we can try to stay unbeaten atleast

  241. keep it simple.

  242. Was it tiredness from mid week? Was it complacency?Appears we may have lost a great oppurtunity to make up grounf on Chelski..Nex week is going to be eve more crucial…93.36 mins corner…Get in dere…Not going to be our day..

  243. Well played, WBA.. They deserved the victory..

    Hopefully the boys will learn from this..

  244. well done west bromwich albion and di matteo

  245. Fucking hell. Never dull, is it?


  246. Ras – It was poor defending, that is all.

  247. Interesting, We score in extra time, and get no extra 30 seconds 😛

    Nah, on a plus some of our players never stopped fighting: Nasri stand up, you’ve covered yourself in glory.

  248. Let the inquest begin.

  249. Such results are annoying. Teams stop fearing you when you lose such home matches.

  250. We’re gonna win the league this season. I kinda feel it in my bones.

  251. Well done West Brom. The performance in the last 15 minutes is what we should have had in the first 15 mins after the break

  252. I’m going for a walk and a cold beer…

  253. It’s annoying that the Chelsea loss was the early kick off, I’d feel a lot less frustrated if they’d lost in the late game after we’d cocked up so massively.

  254. How many seasons has it been since we’ve said, “Good time to lose this season, hope it’ll serve as an open wound for the boys not to underestimate anyone again? No more complacency.”

    And how many times has this happened again and again for the past 5 years??

    What has Eboue and Diaby been doing the whole game before they got subbed out? ABSOLUTELY NOTHING. Well at least Diaby did his usual favourite moves: dilly-dallying on the ball and make a bad pass or gets over crowded and lose the ball.

    Damn it I’m so pissed off right now!

  255. Quick, let’s shut the doors before the doomers get in. They breed like cockroaches.

    I’m willing to bet £5 GoonerAndy will demand we buy a new keeper in Jan. Anytakers?

  256. On a positive note, Nasri was the only player who came out of this match with any credit.

  257. Meh, shit happens…

  258. Di Matteo can’t believe his luck. Gifted a win by The Arsenal. We should have been sent out there fired-up for that, but that’s easier said than done with fixtures coming thick and fast. It’s tough at the top, when each home game is the other team’s Cup Final.

    Look at it this way… Chelsea lost too so it’s as you were at the top of the table. You can just forget today ever happened and leave it to Arsene to give them a bollocking and make sure we don’t turn up as half asleep as that again all season.

  259. Complacency!!!!! That’s simply what happened. To think we had all been predicting 3-0, almost came through except it was going to be reverse. hehe!! Unusually am not so sad after this loss. Need to go on a media lock down.
    Song, Diaby n Eboue need to do better than this. Nasir also has to realise how potent he is when he is more direct like towards the end of the game. The continuous turning around does his game no good.
    Btw Big. Al had an arm injury in the first half according to @Arseblog on twitter.

  260. @Vince – sp*rs lost, a little conssolation.. 😐

    Gadget – I missed the 1st 2 goals, did Al do anything wrong?

  261. Poor performance but credit must be given to West Brom. They turned up to play football and beat us. Fuck John Cross.

    The loss was unfortunate but it’s still early on in the season. Hopefully the players will learn from this and carry on playing how they know they can play.

    I wouldn’t bother defending Almunia. He’ll surely get blamed for today’s loss and be scapegoated as usual.

  262. I don’t think it was defending as much as there was no midfield. Diaby did not control the midfield as he was supposed to be the creative one, did not create anything, Song didn’t have his best of games, so was Eboue.

    I think its more of the team selection that was not correct. Having played Wilshere for the whole game in the CC and Fabregas out, Diaby had to come in maybe back from injury but how many excuses can we have for him?

    I know a lot will beat on Almunia again, but when your team is out of shape like we were, the keeper gets exposed. He gave the penalty away and saved it, this should have been enough warning for the team to wake up, but we started the second half exactly as we did the first and we got punished.

    I’m sorry, there are no excuses to defend this kind of performance

    Kudos to WBA but we made a hash out of it.

  263. gackt13,

    In the past 5, I think only twice: Henry’s injury plagued last season, and the one after Flamini left.

    Thing is, you either believe or you don’t. If you believe the team are better than this, then it’s a good time to lose. Everyone thought this would be an easy game, but it wasn’t. It’s not like we’ve stumbled at our first sign of difficulty, it’s tha we were uber complacent. the fact we came close to getting something from 0-3 down with 20 mins to play shows we’ve got the willingness to fight.

    I’ll take that and let it inform my suspicions, let it strengthen my belief.

    This is my team and I believe.

  264. I totally agree with you, Gunner4Ever

  265. Let’s not start having a go at Super Al.

    Collective loss.

    That loss started in midfield.

  266. Gadget, I really want to believe that the boys will never get complacent again. But let’s face the facts. Last 3 seasons we have lost early in the season to teams we are supposed to beat and we all kept saying hope they learn their lesson.

    Sad fact is we go on to lose a lot more games.

  267. cheer up guys

  268. G4E, I don’t think Diaby should’ve been played. This was a game for Denilson. Him and Nasri would’ve surely kept the ball a hell of a lot better. I think Wenger played Diaby expecting an aerial deluge.

  269. MJ,

    just for the 2nd. The ball appeared to go in through his arms and legs as he crouched to collect the shot.

    However, as G69 points out, he was said to have injured his elbow, just after the penalty save I think.

  270. Another thing is I don’t blame Almunia. I think he did good, in retrospect to how our midfield totally messed up. Especially Eboue and Diaby.

  271. Interested to see the stats for tackles won in the middle third.

  272. i demand we buy another keeper in jan……..sorry gadget……….but whilst ur throwin’ your money around how about putting some towards a new goalie ?

  273. Us, Chelsea, Liverpool and Sp*rs all fail to win on the same day.

    I’m going to watch some snooker and fall asleep, in that order. Night all.

  274. Dont anyone dare say tiredness from midweek – the only player out there who performed was Nasri who played 120 mins midweek. Shocking performances. There will be a few more on Almunias bak after today too and i cant say i blame them

  275. One more addition to my rant, it’s a typical Premier league result. Chel$ki lose and Arsenal lose so everything remains the same as far as our standing in the league…of course waiting for United to get in the mix.

    It happens every year…coincidence?

  276. What did i miss???

  277. I don’t want to believe the pundits when they say we aren’t good enough to win the league. I’m crushed. And WBA didn’t play that well, we were just shit. But such happens!

  278. gackt13, there are thirty two more fixtures to play and a whole slew of players to come back from injury. I think it’s a bit too premature to predict that this season will be just like other seasons.

  279. Gackt,

    Not sure, but I’d never describe Man U, Man City or Sunderland all away as easy games.

    The squad, this team, is much stronger and deeper seasons past, and that’s why I think this time will be different.

    I think of the midfield the King shouldn’t be critised that much. I’m not sure if he was playing centre or out wide, but he did play 120 mid-week. Of course so did Nasri, but he’s not entirely human.

    I think Song was attacking too much from the off. Perhaps from now on he may hang back more and cover the D until we’re a couple of goals up.

    I also agree with G69, this was a game for Denny to play.

  280. do i need to slag off any players steww??? went out and missed the second half! who is to blame for this cockup of a result?

  281. That was truly pathetic.

    Nasri was the only player who thought we had to work to get the points.

    Sloppy play, sloppy passing,way too casual.

    I would be a lot less hacked off if I though this was a one off and that the team would learn from this.

    However, this is the umpteenth demonstration of the team thinking that all they have to do is run on the pitch to collect the points, so this is apparently a lesson this bunch are just not going to learn, no matter how many times they throw it away.

    We can kiss any chance of the league godbye at this rate – like I said, they just aren’t learning the lesson, so we just aren’t going to get it, simple.

    I thought the team selection was hotch potch.

    I think AW cocked up on the subs too.

    If Denilson was available he should have been put on at half time.

    Rosicky was a terrible choice to sub on, he tries to thread the eye of the needle and loses the ball at critical moments in our attacks.

    AW and the team need a long hard look in the mirror, this just wasn’t acceptable imo.

    I will accept any result if the team have given their all.

    Only Nasri deserves to play on Tuesday out of this lot.

    AW needs to set an example after this shower of sh!te.

  282. I agree about Song bombing forward too much..

  283. You missed a giant clusterfuck, Duke.

  284. United face Bolton away. My week-end will improve if they drop points to them.

  285. Sorry Trev, we don’t need a new goalie.

    Apart from the error, Almunia did a pretty good job, especially with the penalty save.

  286. No consolation that Chelsea lost to moneycity. That was an away match against the richest team in the world. You can’t compare WBA at home to Mancity away. And when we begin comparing ourselves to Spurs it only gets depressing!

  287. fukin el Mike, lets sack them all then.

  288. Atwell blowing the whistle at five minutes sharp was a fuck you from the referees to Wenger.

  289. Agree with what MikeSA said. Oh and btw, Arshavin had a good game too.

  290. im off to take this shit out on the wife, and to think she had a nice day till now.

  291. no blows to the face duke harder to cover!!

  292. Kenyan, with all due respect, please put a lid on it.

  293. If we lost then Arshavin or who else you want to name did not have a good game.

  294. You should watch “The Proposal” with the missus instead, Duke.

  295. we dont need a goalie gadet? pull the other one mate

  296. No one is saying that it will be like this the entire season, but when you have a chance to make ground on the team above you and you’re playing at home to WBA…You MUST MUST MUST take it.

    It just happens too often that we don’t make it count when Chel$ki slips up.

    I still don’t blame the players so much today as I blame the selection. On paper Diaby-Song-Eboue should be able to control the game, but on the ground they were not. So Wenger should pick up the tab on this one.

  297. Not sure you can blame this Wenger.

  298. Unless he had his boots on and played.

  299. G69, ever read “Lamentations.” Single teetollers can’t take it off on the wife or the bottle. We have to live through the pain. And I’m in pain!

  300. Dont blame the players? It was totally the players attitide and application thats to blame. Eboue should get no where near midfield again. Backup to Sagna and thats that! Fair enough Diaby is back from injury but how many times has he tried to coast though games? He just seems to never learn.

  301. @ G4E -I think its the other way round, Nasri – Diaby – Song is supposed to be our first choice MF in Cesc’s absence. If the team doesn’t show up, you cant blame the manager for selection!

  302. Good after match interview by Wenger.

    Called like it was.

    May need to bench a few to make an example.

  303. First defeat at the emirates in 9 months, and too many key attacking players missing.

    Let’s get a grip here.

  304. Wenger selects the team. I don’t think Diaby puts his name on the sheet or even King Eboue.

  305. Your only as good as your last game.

  306. Yes but when you r name is on the team sheet you fucking play like you deserve to be in there dont you.

  307. So you mean Diaby & Eboue are not good enough to play for us?

  308. G4E, so your telling me he told them to play shit.

  309. Saying that doesn’t mean it’s not Diaby’s fault for having a bad game…if he’s selected to play he should do better than that…So yes some of the players to blame as well….I guess plenty of blame to go around.

    It’s not the end of the world, and not the end of our Premier league chances for sure….but it was a very good chance to put pressure on Chel$ki early on that gone awry.

  310. I mean they werent good enough today

  311. Muppet,

    We conceded 3 goals and a peno. Not the mark of a title-winning side.

    We had our early chances, promising attacks that were frittered.

    Fatigue was an issue, but there was something wrong.

  312. I agree with Muppet and obviously disagree with Deise.

    Do liverpool need a new keeper yet? Big Al’s made too few mistakes this season, especially when compared with Schwarczher & Reina.

    However Muppet, I don’t really feel we can use injuries as a direct excuse today. It was a strong enough team, but indirectly perhaps with europe in mind, some players were played who may have not in other circumstances

  313. I don’t think any amount of fatigue can account for going 3-0 down with a penalty saved against WBA at home. I know freak results happen, but somehow they seem to happen a little too often with us.

  314. But well played to WBA, they didn’t just come to park the bus and hack us around the pitch.

  315. We need TV, RVP & Cesc back. That we played so well before without our best players could only go so far. I blame the injuries.

  316. Skywatching…You can’t tell me that Wenger didn’t have a hand in this? He is the manager and the bucket always stops at him.

    Diaby should have been gone in half time, it was obvious he was sedated or something close to that. Why wait till we are 2-0 down to sub him and Eboue?

    Diaby should have been gone 30 minutes in.

  317. Gadget – I don’t think having Europe at the back of their mind is an excuse at all. If this really is the case, then we have to admit with regret that for all the big talk the team has not matured.

  318. No Liverpool dont need a new keeper. If you cannot see that Reina is superior to Almunia when all the football world can then i dont know what more can be sid for you Gadget.

  319. G4E the buck stops with the boss.

    But not today.

  320. Szczseny is Number 1

    Dont blame Almunia dont blame Diaby dont blame Eboue blame Wenger he picks them

    It was embarrassing today.Outplayed outfought by a championship game

    Chamakh needs a break but we havent got another striker to come in so he is being run into the ground.The mistake of bringing him on at the lane cost us badly today

    As for our keepers they are a joke.Fabianski fucked up at the lane Almunia twice today.When is Wenger going to realise that without a top class keeper we wont win a title in a million years

  321. The buck stops with the boss for sure but not when players put in a non performance like some have today. The buck also stops with the boss with regards to not relacing players that need replacing.

    Expect a few players to be left in london for our flight to portugal in midweek

  322. Ole,

    strictly speaking, you’re right: playing like that, this team won’t win anything let alone challenge. Fortunately, we don’t play like that too often.

    It seems to me that when Cesc is playing we have a focal point for our attacks, but when he’s not, that focal point isn’t there and the play seems to go through the wings more often than usual. I think we need some one to occupy that Cesc type of role, the playmaker, when he’s not there. Nasri and Rosicky are probably the best suited to this. I don’t think Jack is ready to do this yet, but he will soon.

  323. Ole,

    It is an inexplicable result. To concede 3 goals in succession against a lower/mid table team, shows that we are either fundamentally poor, or we were very bad on the day.

  324. Discipline and responsibility lies with the players once they step on pitch to the players.

  325. That was a collective loss by the players.

  326. don’t worry Diese, I don’t need the footballing world to validate me!

  327. Sometimes it’s painful supporting a football team, any football team. My wife, who is american you see, calls it like it is with that distinctive americanism shouted at any number of players and combination of players “Could you suck any more!?”. Arsenal today. The selection was not good. Nasri was good. We needed Denilson.

    Beware the doomers, they is coming out to play.

    Credit to WBA, but not really. Woeful was Arsenal. That’s footie though. I LOVE this team. Anyone who disses my team can go #@$%$#

    Cheer up lads, EVERY team has this kind of day.
    Actually, a quick check with the psychic goat, yeah something weird was about; the goat reckons it’s bad luck to have a Good day just before two big matches. Well that’s his take, but did it have to be this bad? No, he said, it didn’t.

  328. And if they don’t, the manager takes them off the pitch when it matters not after.

    I think a little bit of Manager and a whole lot of players let me down today.

  329. Kesey, I wasn’t using Europe as an excuse for the players but rather the team selection.

    Yesterday, my post implied that I had hoped both Jack and Denny to start. Perhaps these two were being saved for Europe, I don’t know, but yesterday I guessed incorrectly that they may have started today.

    Anyhow people, I’m off to shower & visit family. Lock down the media until Weds!

  330. should have played a bit of JET to create space for chamakh, really surprised he has had no minutes in the CC or at home today.

  331. Just saw today’s results. Now to read the reactions.

  332. I misunderstood that part! But today it was mental. This group of players should not be going down 3-0 plus saved penalty against WBA at home. They can lose a game that is fine. But now 3-0 down. Regardless of mid week fatigue!

  333. Apparrently, sometimes we lose games.

  334. Incomprehensible to lose like this at home. I agree that when Fabregas is out, Song wanders up the pitch a bit too much. Diaby wasn’t much of a force, just returning from injury, so central midfield really was a weakness today.

    Perhaps this game demonstrates that Wilshere deserves to move up in the ranks. It is a lot of pressure on young shoulders, but he has some fire and seems more disciplined than Song. There is also a case for Denilson playing when we are having possession problems, especially when Fabregas is out, against teams who don’t have much attacking force through the center, since he won’t break up play like Song.

    Lots of players were poor, Eboue, Clichy, Almunia, Chamakh–it really was surprising how out of sync. Nasri stood out in the second half, but he wasn’t able to organize our attack and hold the midfield together the way Fabregas does.

    Arsene Wenger seemed quite shocked by what he saw, judging from his ATVO post-game remarks. He seemed stunned–like he didn’t recognize the team. He hinted at changes, so he really wasn’t impressed.

    To my mind that is quite concerning.

    I really hope some players can come back, like Fabregas, but he might not be really ready for the match, for Chelsea because we can’t afford to be less than our best away there. We need a good performance and a draw to rebuild our confidence.

  335. Oh the horror, the horror! And some of us were gleeful when Barca lost to Hercules at home. Oh the horror. Can’t wait to take it off on Chelsea.

  336. 23/12/78 Tottenham 0 Arsenal 5

    26/12/78 Arsenal 1 West Brom 2

    Should have seen it coming

  337. Paulie,
    That is eerie…

  338. Missed the game today – spending $240 on haircuts for the wife, grandson and me. Looks like money well spent.
    Expect SUGA back tomorrow for 16 hours 😦

  339. Paulie that’s awesome, hats off to you

  340. The midfield was all over the place. Let’s just switch to 4 4 2. Any player who doesnt fit should leave.

    4 3 3 is a fucked formation.

  341. The boing-boing baggies boing up into 5th place.

  342. Anyone think Dematteo has the making of a great coach or is it just a one off?

  343. Limpar, it is a funny looking league table. That’s for sure.

    At least we are still in second, depending on what happens with ManU. We might get lucky and not lose any ground, but it is dispiriting to lose this way at home against a newly promoted side, albeit a quality one.

    Quite the roller coaster ride this week. I hope next weekend we are as up as today we are down.

  344. And good luck to them.

  345. DeiseGooner@5:25

    there are several players I’d like to see put on a flight to Portugal while the rest of the squad travel to Belgrade, but they’ll go unnamed.

    I thought WBA played well and capitalized on our errors. The 3rd goal was obviously the result of removing a defender for Vela, but this shows that when you take risks like this your goalie has to show impeccable judgement on leaving the area and Manuel did not. And though Koscielny didn’t close down Jara on the second goal, Manuel didn’t cut the angle either.
    This was a team loss but a good example of a game where the team needed to be bailed out by it’s goalie and this will rarely happen with Almunia in goal. I don’t know if we have a better option in the squad, but I’m starting to understand why the young Pole is frustrated.

  346. .

  347. A disappointing day at the Emirates, especially having spurned the opportunity to gain some points on chelski. Still, there’s no point crying about it now as that is not going to change the score.

    I thought we were starting to mature but the team seems to be suffering from a lack of consistency. We have a good game e.g. Braga/spuds followed by performances in which we don’t seem to be at the races. It’s still early in the season so hopefully this will be addressed. I think we could do with some more players returning to full fitness as this group is starting to look a little stale and needs freshening up.

  348. Inexplicable. Its high time we kicked out that overpaid senile retarded piece of shit Arsene Wanker from our beloved club once and for all.

  349. A 1-0 unlucky defeat you can excuse but to go 3-0 down at home to a team that will go down is beyond a joke,The attitude of the team stank.Remember the last 10 mins at Wigan last season well this was a whole 90 mins of it.Not one WBA player with the exception of Carson would get into our team.

    Will Almunia start in Europe of course he will as the alternative is Fabianski.How have we got ourselves into this position with TWO poor keepers.We are a big club arent we?

    Get Given in January make Szczsesny number 2 and bomb Almunia and Fabianski out the door

  350. This site is the worst Arsenal site I have ever seen.Apart from a few sensible members,all of them are fans of that senile,overpaid piece of shit Arsene Wanker,who is taking our club down to the drains.Why dont you arselickers go and support Spuds instead of Arsenal

  351. Bad team selection. One of Wilshere or Rosicky should’ve played. But then again the players on the pitch were good enough to have won against a significantly smaller side. Perhaps trying to field a stronger side against the spuds, backfired and didn’t leave us with the options of Rosicky, Wilshere or Denilson.

    It’s about time one of theo or Rvp return, and share the goal burden. You can’t expect a great performance from Chamakh or Arshavin every game.

    Freak result. Every team had a 3-4 such results last season. Why should it change this season? The bigger test, is to win against the bigger teams and take points off them.

  352. Few weeks ago when i had the nerve to say that Diaby was crap and Song was vastly over-rated i was shouted down and accused of being a Spurs fan.
    If today showed us anything it is that Diaby is indeed crap and Song is a long, long way from being even close to world class.

  353. I agree with Ateeb. Chelsea lost, as did the Spuds, and there’ll be a mass suicide over at Le Grove. Every cloud has a silver lining.

    Good luck to the Boing boing baggies. We we were inexplicably abysmal and they were excellent. They deserved the points. You win some, you lose some. Of course I wasn’t this calmly rational a couple of hours ago and I’m still scratching my head as to what I witnessed today…but I’ve stopped cursing now and calmed downed a bit.
    Let’s hope this was just a worrying early “blip”, for whatever reason. The table looks much the same for us (at the moment) so all is not yet lost by any means.

    Oh and I’m guessing “Italian Gooner” is a wind up merchant so I won’t waste my breath telling him to go f***k himself. Oh well as I’m here I might as well..go f***k yourself.

    Let the recriminations commence. I’m going to forget about today’s debacle and the whys and the wherefores for now and enjoy a few drinks.


  354. Well, Ateeb, we’ll have an example of that test soon enough. A point is the minimum we need at Chelski away to keep momentum. We’ll have players returning but the good start will have been squandered. I was hoping a win today would mean that even a poor performance against Chelski would allow us to say say you can do poorly against other big teams and still win.

    What would you say to them if we lose WB home and Chelsea away? You can clean up against mid-table sides and win the league…?

    I think this loss really puts pressure on us away to Chelsea in an unexpected way.

  355. @ italian gooner lol why would we go support spuds if we “lick” the “old seniles” ass?

    Clearly we love both him and the club if we did nto we would do like you. Spew hatred all over.

    I think you have to go back to your hate page italian gooner cos you clearly at the wrong page 🙂

    ps. Chin up mate, its saturday, the night is young and you can go out and have a pint and talk to all the lolvey ladies out there that would die to meet a charmer like yourself . Live is(belive it or not) not only fotball 🙂

  356. Nothing has changed for you Galway Gooner. You’ll still be shoted down here. SO fuck off.

  357. Italian gooner screw off to Le grove where your sort belongs.

  358. I really doubt Almunia has any more life lines left. Another mistake or two, and I expect Arsene to make the changes, be it Fabianski, Mannone, or Schezzney.

  359. A horrific day. But we are still going to win the league. Just one battle lost in a war of 38. Let’s assess tonight’s failure but not get carried away. I’m bloody optimistic. We learn from our mistakes.

  360. We were awful today.

    It was as if the team thought this was a kick around.


    They should be ashamed…I am.

  361. Now all gooners will react negatively: every team loses some, win some.
    Some gooners want Wenger hung, some think JET should have played, some blame the mid week game, some put the whole blame on Almunia.
    The reality is this was a team loss. We played badly. In fact, I don’t rememeber an Wenger team look so clueless!
    In reality it’s just one loss.

  362. Kenyan Gunner @7.38 I really do hope we learn from our mistakes..I Really do..

  363. Passenal, it was more than just fair. Arsene looked depressed and mystified by a team he didn’t recognize. He was a lot shorter in his answers–I found it quite concerning.

    I heard Dan Roebuck mention after the game on ATVO that Almunia had injured his arm on the penalty save. Did anyone else hear anything about this? I wonder whether that affected him on the second goal, because frankly that looked uncharacteristic. The charge out of the box and getting stranded for the third is something more like what we saw on occasion last year. Up to this point Almunia has been very solid, and today he was left exposed by bad collective defending in midfield and a back line that looked quite disorganized. But if he was injured, maybe subbing him would have been wise–but then again, Fabianski would have had to step up–a bridge too far right now.

    Koscielny looked a bit jaded, fast and furious games twice a week is probably not something he is as used to. And I hoped for more leadership from Squillaci to help organize the defense but he is so new to the squad it is hard to expect him to be able to use his experience. That is generally a problem with Vermaelen, Fabregas and Van Persie out we had a real leadership gap on the pitch. That’s one problem with bringing new replacement players, who have in the main been really brilliant. But you can’t expect them to exercise leadership. That had to come from Nasri, Sagna, Clichy, Diaby, Song, Arshavin from the starting 11, but I don’t really see any of those having the sort of qualities and personality for that, at least from afar.

  364. Seeing the first two goals again. Song was pathetic today. Since when did he became an attacking midfielder that stopped bothering to track back? In the first goal, he had more than ENOUGH time to get into the box, but he kept standing at the edge of the box, and jogged back.

    And second goal, he let the player get away with the ball, when Clichy had made the mess of it.

    And the whole match he could be found in attacking positions, something that Diaby should have done. They both fucked up pretty bad. So bad, that we had to bring on an 18 year old kid, to bring some stability, who frankly should’ve been rested today completely.

    Attacking wise, we did create chances in both halves. We lost the battle in the midfield.

  365. Did anyone get a second look at Nasri’s penalty shout in the second half? I had a blurry feed and there never was a reply. Was it a fair call or did the referee miss it?

  366. Ateeb, I agree that central midfield was the issue and Song has gone forward too much. He scored a very nice goal a couple of games ago but we need him staying back. In addition to Wilshere coming on, I thought afterwards this was a sort of game for Denilson–but he played v. Tottenham. He would have helped us settle and take care of the ball, which he is good at. We had trouble keeping the ball and passing properly.

  367. Wow, I am kinda happy that my boss called me to work today. All I could see were the last 15 minutes … well. I do not think I will want to catch a replay of this game.

    But honestly: we have ONE bad game and suddenly all our players are shit? Song who has been massive so far this season has one bad performance and suddenly he is a long, long way from world class? Tell that to Terry who played absolutely shit midweek in the CC.

    Get a grip people. One bad result does not make half our players bad.

    Btw. why didnt Denilson play?

  368. @Limestonegunner
    Yeah, Song has had this more offensive attitude in almost every game so far .. and when we control the game and are having the upper hand it can be really effective. I guess today was an example for what happens when he goes gung-ho in a game where we are not dominating.

  369. From his postmatch interview, seems AW is just as clueless as all of us about this performance.
    I’m beginning to wonder about the ‘mental strength’, maturity, and attitude of some of our more experienced players. Particularly,diaby, eboue, and rosicky. We shouldn’t need cesc or v.p. to put a game like this to bed. WB didnt even play that well.

  370. Wenger had no faith in Almunia in the summer when he tried to sign Schwarzer twice.But because we didnt buy him we are stuck with a keeper who the manager wanted to replace.
    We must sign a keeper in january or all the good signings we made will be a waste of time.
    City will be selling Given in january just sign him

    Evil one bad game yes.But at home to WBA FFS a championship side who Chelski mullered 6-0.

  371. Evil, I think it’s a competition to see who can be the most abusive about the team’s performance today. Unfortunately I was sitting beside two of the worst offenders today at the match. We were two goals down, there was plenty of time for us to get back into the game, but instead of backing the boys to the hilt they started on everyone from the manager to the tea lady. Way to support your team guys!

    I’m sure we would all love it if the team played well and won every match, but it is not going to happen. It’s best if we realise that and learn to take the rough with the smooth. There will be set backs along the way, the real test will be how the team recovers from them.

  372. Evil

    Last 11 league games:

    4 wins,3 draws and 4 LOSSES.(Spurs,Wigan,Blackburn and WBA)today not a ONE OFF and all the losses contained horrendous goalkeeping errors

  373. bradys right foot

    Baffled and sick to my gut, times like these I hate being a fan because it hursts so much. All our problems today came from the midfield, a similar display against Chelsea next week and well be beaten by a cricket score. This result should be branded into the legs of every player at the club as a reminder that their is no such thing as an easy game, unforgiveable display.

    Hats off to the baggies though thoroughly deserved,may even go to the away trip for some cathartic revenge.

  374. Sounds like some of you were just biding your time and waiting for the first slip so you could unleash your bile. You are not supporters, you are haters as you seem more intent on saying ‘I told you so’ than supporting your team. You’re a disgrace and you know you are. You expect so much from the team yet give nothing in return.

  375. Passenal, that is really disheartening to hear that you were seated next to people who did not do their best to rally the team. In the stadium during a game, home support can be so vital. I just don’t understand the point of going to the game and not vocally expressing support. I think many people go there just to enjoy and admire the spectacle and entertaining way we play. Lots of clapping and not so much singing. Like it is a theatrical performance. Worse is getting down and recriminating the team. Very sorry to hear that.

    However, I think most people on here have been trying to talk about what has happened today and raising reasonable issues rather than slinging abuse for its own sake.

    What cannot be denied is that going down 3-0 at home to a newly promoted side is inexcusable for a title-contending side. It is shocking and frankly Arsene Wenger himself was at a loss to understand how the team could be so awful. He said he didn’t recognize the team–that’s a very dramatic statement from hm.

    Let’s hope it is a blip, but a result this off is not something that can just be brushed away as a simple loss. It exposed some very mysterious weaknesses. It puts greater pressure on our games coming up, including Chelsea. Most people have been trying to think through what might have explained this poor performance by analyzing the game and wondering what we might do to bounce back.

    Where is everyone, btw? If some may have waited to come on and complain, vent etc… it seems that many others don’t want to confront the reality of today’s performance and just pass it off. That’s fine, but that’s not impressive support to me either. Wenger said several times in the press conference that there would have to be lot’s of analysis and reflection of what went wrong. He also mentioned that many players made mistakes. I am sure he will be very determined to find a way to improve everything from the confidence of the team, its mental preparation, its attitude, the selection, etc…

  376. Delia-----Block 112

    Just got in from the Emirates and yes we were way off the pace from the start. I am convinced that Diaby was not fit and together with Song and Eboue gave us absolutely nothing in the mid-field. WBA’s passing game was superior to ours (what an admission ). Apart from Nasri , who worked incredibly hard ,everyone else was totally flat. Yes, we did start to play a bit when AW made the substitutions but by then we had shot ourselves in both feet by the quite awful decision making of Almunia in rushing out of the area and failing to collect the ball ,resulting in WBA’s 3rd goal.
    I’ve just read AW’s after match comments to ATVOL and he said it all. Luckily there’s a chance to redeem ourselves next week.
    I doubt if we can play again as poorly as we did today. Ever hopeful and proud to be a Gooner.

  377. ‘others don’t want to confront the reality of today’s performance’


    Thanks Delia. Haven’t seen all the goals, but it sounds like Diaby had a game like Denny did when he was rushed back against Stoke…Not 100%, not even close.
    Maybe that’s not ‘real’ enough for some.
    Perhaps a Robinson-esque chop to the head would help? Joke!

  378. Denilson: He missed pre-season etc..so was rested? Whoops, there”s that reality matt again. Must watch my step…

  379. I did not see the game. I thought the score was a mistake. I didn’t know what happened and I don’t think I need to know. Just read some quotes from Wenger and that says it all. he said ” It’s a mestery for me” and I think I will leave at that and move on. Now those players have to show the managers what they are made off against Chelsea and that all that matters. I think Wenger will say forget today. I think every season we have one of those shock results at home and this one looks like one of them. We got it out of the way lets move on. I expect 100% from players against the Chavs. We simply have to beat them.

  380. @ Delia
    ditto to what you said, basically.

    @ Limestonegunner
    Where is everyone, btw? If some may have waited to come on and complain, vent etc… it seems that many others don’t want to confront the reality of today’s performance and just pass it off. That’s fine, but that’s not impressive support to me either.

    What on earth does that mean?

  381. ”Let’s hope it is a blip, but a result this off is not something that can just be brushed away as a simple loss”
    Makes sense to me. The Chelsea fixture after this doesn’t help either. But the team has a great chance to a good result in midweek & head to the Bridge in confident mood.

    Lets hope we get TV & Cesc back for Sunday.


  382. This was not any old defeat to a Chelsea or a Man Utd this was a defeat against a championship team who Chelsea beat 6-0 a month ago.This was a shocker.And it cannot be written off as a one-off.Have we forgotten Wigan and Blackburn last season.The attitude of some of our players was we only have to turn up and WBA would roll over and die.For 11 players not to turn up is unacceptable
    The goalkeeping situation has now gone beyond a joke.I am fed up with Gooners sticking up for Fabianski and Almunia after every mistake they make that costs us a goal.Enough is enough give Szczesny a chance or buy someone in january
    After Seaman and Lehmann it breaks my heart to see my club having suck poor keepers playing for us

  383. @1lc
    Exactly. This result is a one-off, we have to rally the troops now. We can’t let this result be the reason to fall into some sort of depression — so close to the Chelsea game we have to support the team even MORE. Right now, even the CL game loses a bit of importance. All that matters is next week Sunday.

  384. @Rene
    Get a f*cking grip. That was Almunias first mistake this season, he has been a rock in goal in every other game so far.
    But anyway, doomer, show me any other Prem keeper who has not made a howler this season. I dare you.

  385. How embarrassing is hearing that PA annoucer calling out the names on MOTD

  386. Evil

    The 3rd goal was his fault as well.Are you really telling me you think Almunia is top class.Why did Wenger try and sign Schwarzer then?Get your head out of the sand

  387. Delia—–Block 112 on September 25, 2010
    at 9:27 pm

    If Almunia had stayed on his line for the 3rd goal, West Brom would simply have scored 20 seconds earlier than they actually scored.

  388. mj, I really hope we can get a lift with a good result at Partizan. I did think though that we would be buoyed by humiliating the Spuds after the deflating ending at Sunderland. I think TV and Cesc rejoining could be very important because we didn’t have any influential leaders in the spine of the team. Will they be match fit even if physically so? Diaby seemed out of sorts starting after coming back from injury. It is tricky to come back in and start away at Chelsea. Unfortunately Cesc has definitely been ruled out for Partizan. Getting a few minutes as a sub if the game is in hand would be good for them to tune them up. A lot to think about this week.

    FG, as far as your question, I think it is too easy just to say it wasn’t our day; oh well, there’s next week and not try to analyze what happened and consider how we will recover. Just as it is too easy to come on and just slag off on the team, players, manager etc… Passenal was attacking the latter as not being good supporters, and I think it isn’t very impressive either to avoid coming to the blog and honestly discussing the game or restricting comment to saying it is just one game and doesn’t matter at all. It was, I think, a big loss.

    I agree, Evil and 1lc, that the team have to find a way to recover very quickly and get ready for Chelsea. But there needs to be real analysis of why we were so flat and lost concentration or we will have a demoralizing loss away to Partizan. While that won’t be disaster to our CL group chances it will not help us regain confidence for the Chelsea game. We shouldn’t be depressed but certainly concerned. I have to say that Wenger’s sober reaction was itself concerning–he seemed quite let down by how they played. I wonder what his strategy for recovering will be.

  389. Ole, I think you are pointing to the breakdown in the defense that forced Almunia to decide what to do at that point, without good options either way.

    I really don’t blame Almunia much for this one. In point of fact I heard that he had injured himself saving the penalty and asked above if anyone else had heard about that. It was mentioned by Roebuck on ATVO’s post-game show and possibly in some other commentaries.

    The question this raises is how bad was it, did it affect him on the second goal, which looked uncharacteristic? Why wasn’t he substituted, but then again, perhaps Wenger didn’t have confidence in Fabianski coming in at that point in the game.

  390. @ Limestonegunner

    “I think it isn’t very impressive either to avoid coming to the blog and honestly discussing the game or restricting comment to saying it is just one game and doesn’t matter at all.”

    Why does everyone have a duty to come on the blog and discuss the game? Why can’t they jsut go and get pissed of play snooker or something? Why can’t some people say it’s one game and we shouldn’t blow it out of proportion, if that is what they think? Where is the harm?

  391. Limestonegunner

    While I understand your point of analysing the game so as not to repeat that performance. After seeing AW’s after match comments I wonder if even he can analyse it.

  392. Limestone – You are right about them being match fit, limestone, but we’ll anyways need to rotate players. We cant expect players like, say, Nasri to play 5 games in 15 days. I would gamble on a semi (match) fit Cesc.
    Vermaelen as well.
    For Tuesday’s game, we might see a much changed & young/inexperienced side, for this squad surely needs some rest. (& punishment maybe as well?)

  393. Limestonegunner, if what dups said is what you mean, then how is us analysing today’s match going to affect whether that performane is repeated or not?

  394. FG – limestone expects to see a procession of posters lining up to stick the boot in. Anything less is not satisfactory to him. Sad, but true.

  395. FG, why criticize others for having critical comments either then if they deal with the loss by venting? Why not just let others behave as they want. I am expressing my point of view and what I take to be the value of this forum–to talk about Arsenal and the games they play. I am not saying anyone has to behave in either way to be a good supporter. That’s something a lot of others who comment here like and prefer to do. I simply don’t think that is nearly as interesting as talking about the game with other Arsenal supporters.

    dups, you might be right. He looked disconcertingly at a loss to explain. But, I do think he noticed some performances in particular that he was especially unhappy about. He mentioned something about analyzing the game and making some changes because there were many mistakes. Of course, he won’t embarass anyone to the press. Just like he wouldn’t say what he told the team after the game either. But, he is too smart not to develop a response after going back over the game. He will try to discover what happened, but somethings are ultimately inexplicable as you say.

  396. That wasn’t what I asked you, Limestonegunner.

  397. Passenal, I don’t think that is fair at all. Obviously you haven’t been reading my posts. Or perhaps you mistake analysis for some sort of ill-meaning criticism. I am afraid that would be sad, and I hope it isn’t true, since it is stimulating to read and trade views.

  398. FG, I was lagging behind and haven’t responded to your previous comment. Then again you haven’t really responded to this last one yet.

    Sorry, I write too long perhaps and don’t just throw out the first quip that comes to mind.

  399. mj- it was amazing that Nasri could play with such energy and determination, especially in the second half after the number of games he has played in succession, including 120 mins on Tuesday. So you are probably right that he’ll have to rest away to Partizan. You have a point about a rotated squad away to Partizan, since Arsene Wenger seemed to hint at some changes. But I would be worried also about the effect on confidence if we don’t manage a good result mid-week before we meet Chelsea. In some ways, perhaps we have to just constantly play the best possible side we have available to try to maintain a good run. It’s hard to say. This side was rotated with only a few players from Tuesday’s game starting. But Wilshire and Rosicky were subs who might better have started. Again, it is a real conundrum for Arsene Wenger.

  400. why criticize others for having critical comments either then if they deal with the loss by venting?
    Because being overly negative or abusive on a public forum (talking generally, not necessarily about anyone today) creates a bad atmosphere aroudn the team.

    Why not just let others behave as they want. I am expressing my point of view and what I take to be the value of this forum–to talk about Arsenal and the games they play. I am not saying anyone has to behave in either way to be a good supporter.

    Not true. You implied that choosing not to comment or not venting was not impressive support. So why is it not impressive support?

  401. Italian Gooner sure vented. I would not call him/her/it’ impressive support’.

  402. FG, that’s an interesting and strange question in a way. Lots of commenters on this blog have maintained that saying negative things about the team on this and other blogs undermines the team and player’s confidence, affecting them negatively and damaging their performances. Well, if that is true, why wouldn’t helpful analysis and reasoned discussion on the blogs equally help inform the atmosphere for the team’s self-examination and reflection when it is needed? I don’t know, because I don’t think what we write on here is terribly influential in that way.

    If you read my initial response to Passenal, you’ll not that I think it is quite a different matter at the stadium during the game, when the players are affected directly by the character of the support.
    To your latest, first, I distinguish rather crucially between discussing the game honestly and simply venting. That seems to be something you are trying to collapse together, which is the whole point I am making. Secondly, my point about people not choosing to comment was poorly phrased and should be understood contextually only in response to blasting others for coming on, allegedly, just to–it would have been better and clearer to say that it wasn’t impressive blogging on an Arsenal supporter site to avoid actually engaging the game and what happened, since it is equally uninteresting and uninforming to read and discuss with those who only have abuse to hurl at the team as those who just dismiss the loss without reflection or abuse those who abuse the team. To my mind it doesn’t have anything to do with the quality of support or one’s status as a supporter either way really; that’s Passenal’s position, it seems.

    Well, that’s why I prefer to talk about the game rather than a meta-discussion about support and commenting on the blog site.

    We can keep going round on these issues, but I’d actually prefer to talk about the game, about which I still have questions and have raised issues that haven’t been discussed.

    For example, I am still wondering about Almunia’s possible injury during the penalty, whether anyone else heard about this and whether it was evident to anyone at the game who might know more. And so on as I mentioned a couple times above.

  403. dups, I certainly wouldn’t be inclined to call it that either! but I wouldn’t also want to make a big deal of it if I don’t have a way of engaging him/her in any real discussion about the football and only want to attack his/her support.

    As you can see in my exchange above with FG, that can make for a tediously boring and unproductive discussion–my apologies! but I felt like FG was insisting on having me explain what I had meant. And it wouldn’t be good form not to engage as best I could.

    I’m off, you’ll all be relieved to know–it’s late!

  404. No one can comment on todays game without being critical.Today was the worst ever performance at the Grove outplayed and outhought by a championship side.
    What are we supposed to do come on and say we played great Almunia was brilliant? the midfield was superb?
    Wenger and the players take the plaudits they must take the stick when we are awful

  405. Rene

    Can’t say I have ever seen you on here giving any plaudits to Wenger or the team.

  406. @ Limestonegunner

    Just to remind you how this started…
    Where is everyone, btw? If some may have waited to come on and complain, vent etc…it seems that many others don’t want to confront the reality of today’s performance and just pass it off. That’s fine, but that’s not impressive support to me either.

    To your latest, first, I distinguish rather crucially between discussing the game honestly and simply venting. That seems to be something you are trying to collapse together, which is the whole point I am making.

    I did not collapse together honest discussion and simply venting. I asked why not wanting to comment or not venting was not impressive support, as you described it.

    Regarding honest discussion – first of all, you imply that those who are not seeing this defeat as symptomatic of wider problems (for example) are not being honest. How do you know they are not being honest?

    People MAY discuss what they feel went wrong if they choose to do so – but you imply that they OUGHT to. It may be interesting for some people and not for others. How is it anyone’s duty as a supporter? Any analysis we fans do on blogs is always going to be limited by the limited information available to us, so any conclusions we might draw would be of limited use. I also think it unlikely that anyone who is involved in coaching (who can affect the issue) will be trawling the blogs for explanations. I agree with you that our ideas are not influential – not in terms of the details. All that comes across is the emotion or the general mood of bloggers – the fans aren’t happy/the fans are happy, for example. So given all that, why is it a failing not to comment after a bad defeat?

    You also said everyone is entitled to react in their own way, but criticise those who react to a defeat by not commenting, or not criticising the team.

  407. …Never saw this coming (Shakes head).
    Maybe it is good I had to do the holiday thing with kids etc.

  408. Well it’s the moring after and I’ve told myself: ‘I must remain positive.’

    Yesterday hurt and hurt bad. Yet, Arsene acknowledged the very poor nature of the team performance yesterday. Our best game is basically pass and move (as I suggested above with reservations before the match!). Not only was our passing off but our movement was near non-existent. As the manager said: we got what we deserved.

    My hope is that we do learn from yesterday and never allow this to happen again. Europe then Chelski coming up means there’s scope for a rebirth and real need for swift improvement.

    So with hope in heart…


  409. Totally disappointing game yesterday felt d team had their minds left back in last tuesday, i guess they underrated the opposition after the huge derby win………………as wenger said the team looked strange nt like his team, wnt blame the goalkeeper for the goals the midfielders were nt tracking back properly and even when they did were not positioned properly, i blive diaby shld hv been eased into the team after his injury, well we all learn, i hope d team has learnt some lessons 4rm dis and move forward as quickly as possible.

  410. We are all completely dumbfounded and upset.

    Personally it’s not the result that upsets me, it was the totally slapgat (“dont-give-a-flying-fvck”) performance by our players.

    Pull a stint lke that in my army days we would have run till we puked then run some more till we puked again, (repeat several times until half the squad drops).

    It’s not ok that the team went out there with a seriously sh!t attitude.

    You can dress it up or excuse it any way you like, but that result was directly attributable to a poor attitude. AW needs to take responsibility for that.

    AW has to look at himself in the mirror on several points:

    1.The team selection was clearly disrespectful of WBA in terms of players coming back from injury etc, combinations that were poorly matched etc.

    2.The team could not have been correctly prepared on a mental level. (I almost have a vision of the team milling around the change room chanting “easy, easy, easy”) – this is probably the issue that worries the most regarding this performance.

    3.AW failed to grasp the situation and make early changes.

    4.Denilson should have been in the team, but seeing as he wasn’t, he should have been put on at half time.

    5.Having made the first error, AW failed to correct it and made the wrong substitution (Rosicky), too late.

    I see a lot of posters have used the opportunity to punt their own agendas, predominantly around the goalkeeping issue.

    For me that is a total red herring.

    The players we have. The squad we have.

    They’re good enough and we do have the required strength in depth.

    More than almost everyone else in fact.

    This is NOT about the quality or quantity of personnel available.

    This is about truly aweful mental preparation and the inability of the players on the pitch to have enough self discipline to take responsibility and ratchett up a few gears.

    AW is also to blame for sitting there and allowing it to happen, and continue to happen.

    Imo he sat there while Rome burned and did nothing.

    If the players were unable to rouse themselves, he should have done it himself by making early changes.

    He should have also made it clear that players who cannot raise themselves for the “small” games can not expect to be picked for the “big” games.

    One single player out there showed he belonged in the team. Nasri.

    The rest should be left at home for Tuesday to set an example.

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