Arsenal Bag Point In Flawed Performance

West Bromwich Albion 2 – 2 Arsenal

1 – 0 Reid (3)
2 – 0 Odemwingie (58)
2 – 1 Arshavin (71)
2 – 2 van Persie (78)

Arsenal showed the character that is so often deemed to be missing in retrieving a deficit that arose through the flaws that have so often been shown in the past. Arguments will be made for this being two points dropped or a point gained, the dominance of either view depending on your outlook for the season.

Albion were two goals ahead but had been pummelled. At the end of the match, Arsenal had over sixty per cent of the possession and eighteen attempts on goal to the hosts four. Arsenal made two defensive mistakes and were punished. The Baggies might be a yo-yo team but are not going to return to The Championship without a fight.

Arsenal have wobbled but like the Weebles of yesteryear, refuse to fall down. Defeated in domestic cup competitions, ousted from Europe’s top table, the battered and bruised visitors refused to cower as the title race seemed destined to move out of their control.

West Brom came out of the traps quickly and within three minutes were ahead. Brunt’s corner found Reid to power home a header from point blank range. The returning Aaron Ramsey had been assigned the task of marking the Albion midfielder but failed to track his man effectively. One goal down but most of the match remained to retrieve the deficit.

Dusting themselves down from the set back, Arsenal gradually assumed a control of the game that reflected the two teams relative positions in the Premier League. Albion were assiduous in their defending, banks of four and five confronting the Arsenal players, stifling any attempts to stretch the play.

On one occasion in the first half, Arsenal found width. Clichy broke on the left, his cross met by a looping Robin van Persie header which bounced off the crossbar into the path of Aaron Ramsey. The Welsh youngster attempted to find redemption via the back of the net, instead found Carson blocking his way to goal.

Arsenal’s dominance required more attacking nous; it arrived in the form of Marouane Chamakh at half-time, Denilson withdrawn as the visitor’s sought to turn possession into points. It did not bring about immediate dividends.

Albion threats were few and far between. As the pitch churned, Brunt wasted a good opportunity to increase the lead before the fickle finger of fate turned on Arsenal once more.

Mulumbu hoisted an archetypally English ball over the top of the defence. Odimwingie gave chase with Squillaci and as the two seemed destined to tangle for possession, Manuel Almunia met them, almost collided with Squillaci and left the Albion forward a straightforward finish. No hiding for Almunia, his rashness had cost a goal and the withering look of Squillaci said it all.

There can be no excuses from the Spaniard, his view unimpeded as the ball came over the top of the defence. The bounce spat the ball into an alternative course than one might have expected but even the deceptively slow Squillaci was in control of the situation enough to force Odimwingie toward the touchline. Quite simply, the goalkeeper should not have been in the position that he found himself.

It mean that a small hill became larger yet nowhere near mountainous in its size. Bendtner came on for Ramsey, Wenger deciding that the lead was retrievable and Albion unlikely to hold out against an attacking onslaught. It was a substitution which would prove rewarding.

The players needed to regather their strength, physically and mentally. A quick response would have refilled energy levels, drained through the deflation of the host’s second. van Persie provided a small tonic but his free kick drifted harmlessly past the post.

With twenty minutes to go, Arsenal gained the necessary foothold. Chamakh is following the path trodden by Arshavin in regaining form, emerging from the bench to provide assists, followed by goals. It would be a timely return if that is the case. The Russian picked up the ball in midfield and laid it wide to Chamakh. His measured pass found Arshavin’ bustling run into the box, the power built by the pocket dynamo unleashed in his shot.

Back in the game, Arsenal turned the screw. The Albion defence, already stretch buckled once more, breaking point reached. Arshavin’s cross swirled to the far post where Bendtner returned the ball into the goalmouth. Dithering Albion defending was punished by an incisive Robin van Persie tackle, the ball poked into an empty net as Carson looked on despairingly.

Arsenal sought a winner, the urgency missing for big parts of the game now evident. In truth it was much as before. Albion riding their luck, Carson once more called into action displaying the inconsistency which saw his international career end before it started; culpable in van Persie’s equaliser, the Albion custodian redeemed himself with a save from Clichy as the pressure grew.

The final whistle brought relief for the home fans, an emotion matched by Arsenal’s less the elation. Dropped points because of defensive errors will bring forth criticism, bearing the brunt will be Manuel Almunia.

Goalkeeping is a touchy subject. Almunia had won plaudits in Barcelona, one of only two players to emerge with any credit from the Champions League exit. That has quickly evaporated and the welter of abuse towards him is swelling. He made the mistake but Wenger’s options are limited. Were there a match this week, I wonder if the manager would have taken a risk and played Lehmann.

As it is we go into the international break which allows him and his staff to work on the Spaniard, rebuilding his confidence following yesterday. It will be necessary; no matter what you think of Almunia, to play Lehmann is a huge risk. With a respect to the German, some reserve matches over the next fortnight would not go amiss. Training is one thing but match sharpness another.

The Premier League table identifies one thing, a point not to be forgotten. Arsenal sit second, one game in hand, five points behind Manchester United, the two sides still to meet at The Emirates. The destiny of the title is in their hands, the grip loosened a little but not wrenched out of their control.

’til Tomorrow.

Posted on March 20, 2011, in Arsenal, Football, Premier League, Premiership, Soccer and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 184 Comments.

  1. 60% possesion its like a cracked record.Its what you do with the ball that counts.Was Carson MOTM? No Way
    First half we were sluggish and slow
    Almunia is just a mistake waiting to happen you just know it oing to happen.

    Why oh Why didnt Wenger buy a keeper last summer.Lehmann has to start the next game

  2. Furious Styles

    Good fightback, very poor result. The Manu game at the emirates must be won it seems..

  3. Great comback, but gave away 2 stupid goals which has cost us two points.

    I have given a lot of thought to our “soft centre” as some would call it. We don’t concede any more goal that any other top teams, but many of the goals we do conceded are partly our own fault. Quite often teams do not have to do an awful lot to get a chance against us. I believe this is where our so called “soft centre lies”. It was evidenced perfectly yesterday. They had 2 chances on goal, and we contributed as much as W Brom in making those chances.

  4. I really can’t understand the logic behind the calls for Lehmann on the back of this one mistake by Almunia.
    What happens if Lehmann himself makes a howler? Its not a very unlikely scenario given how he has performed in recent years. Drop him and bring back Almunia? What a farce that would turn out to be.

    The only reason Lehmann should play is if Almunia is injured.

  5. In which world do you live? Are you for real? Title race?

    Be very happy if Arsenal finish 4th. They will lose to Spurs and United, that is a given. It is not Almunia who is a clown, it is Wenger who is, for wasn’t he Wenger’s first choice till barely 3 months ago?
    And the lethargy of the first half shows that the players know that Wenger awards losers, like Denilson and the board love losers like Wenger.
    That they played well in the second half was due to the industry of a few who still believe.

    For the AKB brigade we say: Arsenal are doomed under Wenger. He will make it a good midtable club by then, like Everton. That is how things will pan out.
    As for Nasri and Fabregas, expect both to leave next season. Then the endgame will begin for Wenger, AKB and other deluded supporters of his. Sadly, Arsenal FC will no longer be a big club.

  6. Henristic

    One mistake.Are you joking WBA home 2 mistakes-2 goals, Orient away.I wish it was just one mistake.

  7. Kubla Khan is such a strange fellow. He talks as though Arsene has endangered our status as a big club, even though he is the reason we are a big club. He talks as though we are out of the title race, despite the fact that our destiny is in our own hands. This goes beyond dooming…he genuinely wants Arsenal to fail because he hates Wenger so much.

  8. Even if we don’t beat the mancs at home, there is still a very good chance we can win the league if we win all of our other games. I’m certain that United will drop more than 4 points before the end of the season.

    They will be up for the game at the emirates though and will deploy their usual spoiler tactics, and I fear it may work again. It doesn’t matter how many injuries they have if all they do is park the bus and attack on the counter.

  9. The team definitely showed character in coming back (from a deficit entirely of their own making) but they also lacked the killer instinct to finish the job. You just know United would have found a way to score/fluke a willing goal, and we just fell short.

    Results like this certainly don’t help our cause, but all is not lost yet. We just have to hope we can come back from the international break with some of our injuries cleared up and with a fresh attitude. Odds against us at this point, but we’re by no means down and out yet.

  10. Well at least they showed character which has certainly been missing of late.
    From the highlights I seen certain players were well up for the fight but, let down by an awful defensive f-kup.

    Does anybody have a clue how intense defensive drills are during training?
    We always see the same sort of school boy errors which could of easily been avoided if there was a bit of chat and organisation taken from the the training ground.

    Who’s idea was it for Wilshere to pick up Reid?
    That was so silly and cost us a goal all because nobody organised or thought “that’s a wrongen switch with me Jack”.

    As for their second goal well I think Alumina knows that was the last time he does that crazy shit in a Arsenal shirt. I think it was fair to have him play but, enough is enough. We were down with our back to the wall and showing we were up for it, showing real character and fight and he let us down again.

    He cost us too many games last season and I thought he turned a corner but, he’s not up to it so let Lehman, come in asap without wasting time or giving Almunia endless chances. This is our time to be crowned champions but, there’s no way it’s going to happen with a keeper who can’t handle it mentally 100 percent of the time.

    Squillachi, could be questioned as to why he didn’t attack the ball out the air but, he could say he didn’t want to in case it fell behind him while he was trying to adjust direction to make the header. He done what any defender should of and that was to hold him up and wait for Sagna. Next minute that fucking idiot comes rushing out and actually pushes Squills off balance.

    manure at it again taking the word “luck” to new fucking heights. Bolton played some fine football but, never took any of the several chances they had. I can’t see the current Utd team going all the way without dropping points that’s why for me yesterday result was good because we are still there with a game in hand and the team is fighting for it.

  11. This is not good, this is not good at all, for a team that aspire to win the league the performance yesterday was just not good enough. United slipped 6 point and we were not even able to take advantage of their slip even though we were playing against “small teams” And now the problem which has plagued our team in the time of the season has reared its ugly head again. we are having to scratch the barrel for any player who is fit . All this sound like deja-vu. we have been here before. we had a chance to strengthen the squared during the break, the manager felt we would manage. lets see how far managing takes us. I do wish this team all the best and there have my full support. But something tells me that you can not keep doing the same thing over and over again and expect a different result. Its called insanity

  12. Fair summary, YW.
    Arsene called it two points dropped but a psychological point gained. We’ll know at the end of the season which was more important. I am pleased that we had to battle and did so. A win would have been much, much better, but confidence will have been gained from turning a game around. And we are still unbeaten in the league since that 1-0 loss to ManUre.

    @ Henristic
    Agree about Lehmann/Almunia. Some of us should remember how Almunia became no 1 ahead of Lehmann.

    @ goonerandy
    So it’s beginning to dawn on you that we might not be a bunch of chokers after all? We make individual mistakes and some poor decisions. *Some* of those mistakes and decisions are due to our relative youth or inexperience (Leyton Orient equaliser, Birm City CC winner for example). That is why it is infuriating to have all our missteps put down to mental weakness or lack of leadership, and to have those explanations so eagerly embraced by some fans without any examination of other possible reasons.

  13. If Almunia plays for the rest of the season then our chances of winning our remaining games are seriously diminished. I counted 2 proper shots on our goal, yet we were 2-0 down to WBA yet again.

  14. If they had applied themselfes from the first minute we wouldnt be talking about lost points but hey this is Arsenes bottlers they cant be expected to put in a full 90 minutes of determination and application.

  15. nolagunner,
    he’s far from being the only one. Go to le-grove and you’d find others like him for whom our current form is a wet dream as it helps ‘prove’ their theories.

  16. ” this one mistake by Almunia”

    What? Are you serious? 1 mistake! Have you been watching Almunia? A great shot stopper but a poor decision maker. All well and good when you need him to keep goal when being peppered by shots but in a game of few chances you dont want your keeper being the main giver of those chances to the opposition.

    But hey, we are stuck with him now. We shouldnt be but we are. So lets hope thats his mistakes out of the way for the remainder of the games. We cant afford any more silly points dropped.

  17. I’m concerned that our defence is so prone to mistakes such as in the first goal and sudden incidents of sheer lunacy like in the second goal against teams like West Brom. If we do it against teams like that, what happens when we play Man U, Spurs and Liverpool in the remaining games. Those teams and Bolton, who we still have to play away, are going to come at us and test our vulnerable defence , the question is simply can we score more than we concede because we couldn’t yesterday.
    AW has finally admitted on the website something that most of us appeared to know for some time, that Vermaelen is out for the season. He says, ” In fairness he has not played since September, I never expected him to be fit before the end of the season”. When did he come to this decisison? If it was in January why did he continue to tell the website and the media that Vermaelen was back soon and we had enough cover until he was available?
    And on a different subject, what is Sky’s love affair with Harry Redknapp at the moment about? It’s bad enough that his son is on all the time, but now he is the studio guest on Goals on Sunday and they have even provided him with a DVD of Real Madrid’s game against Athletico yesterday.

  18. Fun – I never said we were “chokers”. My reasoning is not an excuse as you seem to think; it is a fundamental flaw of the side. None of our back 4 or keeper on Sat were young or experienced.

  19. Good balanced report as usual Yogi and the same old BS from the doomer brigade in response. Fortunately I have better things to do than wade through a river of crap to find the odd pearl. Laters peeps.

  20. We lost two points, hovever much we moan, they will not come back. Todya’s talk about how Almunia, Denilson and wenger not being good enough will not help. The appropriate time will be after May when the board can do some thing about them. Now, the best course of action would be to get behind the team and hope for the best. Next season, I wish we bring back Lansbury, Cochelin, Kyle and JET. They could give us much more than some people.

  21. Paulie Walnuts

    Whilst not defending Almunia for yesterday`s error (& it WAS a shocker) our fans are too quick to jump on the media led campaign concerning our keepers.

    In the 8 premiership matches yesterday , Almunia`s was just one of four goalkeeping errors which cost points. Jaaskelainen, Foster & Kingston were the other keepers , yet they won`t come under anywhere near the same scrutiny.

    My point is that in the helter skelter of this league these things happen no matter who plays in goal.

    VDS spills a regulation free kick at Anfield that Kuyt puts away for his hat trick & not a word is uttered. The same goes for Reina & Cech when they mess up.

    I see it as another stick to beat us with & unless fans really want to completely wreck Almunia (& our title chances) then the finger pointing must stop now.

    Roll on the international break & then we`ll see a different side in April.

  22. Thank you very much for this post. For the first time since that FA cup exit I feel like there is still some hope. Let’s keep on keeping on, our rivals will surely drop valuable points too.

  23. Agree with henristic about the red faced will park the bus at ES.How on earth Wenger can’t deal with teams parking the bus is strange. Teams have been playing these type of tactics against the gunners yet somehow Wenger is naive to go on all out attack thereby leaving the goalkeeper exposed.Mu has been doing this the last five years. Wake up Wenger. Your tactics are sure to invite more defeats.
    In the WBA game,the gunners were pressing.But as usual,a swift counter meant the albion players had acres of space in contrast to the gunners.This is not the first time the gunners have been undone in such a way and it will continue until the FM think of another way.
    As for the title ,forget it.If the gunners continue playing this way it will be more defeats as the defence is suspect.That is why thankfully the gunners were knocked out of the FA/Cl. All gooner fans can’t stomach defeats in the qf/sf/f
    considering the wek defence. It will be too heart breaking. Wenger may not agree but his team is simply not good enough to win any trophy including the epl

  24. In fairness Almunia was wrecked by the goings on in the summer about getting Schwarzer in as his replacement. When Wenger has to commend his professionalism and dignity you know he wasnt treated right. He looks a shell of a man

  25. But they do Paulie, they do.

    They want to wreck Almunia. They want the season to go south so they can gleefully demonstrate, in their own tiny minds, that the venom they pour weekly over Arsene had a basis in fact.

    They would be wrong of course. Still, they can sit at their keyboards and wallow in the righteous indignation that only cowards and fools can. They can revert to their fantasy football, cherrypicking players and managers and spending their fantasy millions.

    Wankers, the lot of them.

  26. Kubla Kahn by Samuel Taylor Coleridge was an epic visionary ode to the endless power of human imagination. I wonder why the fellow who posted earlier chose that as his moniker, perhaps it’s the name of his local night spot, as he appears to have the imagination of a mean spirited moron and the vision of a dying fart. What the fuck is all this “AKB brigade” bollocks. Anyone who proudly imagines themselves to be a member of a non-existent movement is just asking for contempt. How old are you? Come back and have reasonable discussion when your testicles have dropped. Actually don’t. Sorry, but you lose patience sometimes.

    Nice write up YW. I almost lose heart reading some of these comments, I really do. Are we 2nd in the league? is it over yet? I know the pundits have handed Man Utd the title, the same pundits who nodded sagely and knowingly informed us that Chelsea would walk it after about half a dozen games, but it isn’t. If we do win the league, some of you won’t deserve to bask in the reflected glory, you really won’t.

    I agree with Passenal. Sometimes life’s too short.

  27. @ goonerandy
    “Fun – I never said we were “chokers”.”
    You have been saying so for months.

    “My reasoning is not an excuse as you seem to think; it is a fundamental flaw of the side. None of our back 4 or keeper on Sat were young or experienced.”
    I wasn’t talking specifically about Saturday, I was talking in general terms and about “some” of our mistakes, including some of the silly goals conceded (the examples given).

  28. Agree with you, cbob.
    And Harry.
    And Passenal.
    May the international break be over soon.

  29. Sorry for the re post but… Fuck me why is it the
    miserable cunts from that
    other blog always turn up
    when we dont get the
    result that is expected? You
    guys actually support the
    Arsenal? This sense of
    entitlement is infuriating,
    who the fuck gives you the
    right to demand we win
    every single game/
    competition we are
    involved in? What would
    you do if you supported –
    say- the Albion, or
    Liverpool? I was none to
    happy with the soft goals
    conceded, partly because I
    just knew the “realists”
    would come out the
    woodwork talking thier
    usual contrived bullshit.
    Here ’s some realism for
    you- football is a game,
    and as such no one has a
    divine right to win, the
    Albion played very well,
    and you have to give the
    lads credit for turning the
    game around and almost
    taking all 3 points …

  30. The truth is we spent the first two-thirds of that game wandering aimlessly. Itwas no surprise we were behind and even less of a surprise the way it happened. Simple header from a set-piece and a goalkeeping howler. Sound familiar? Almunia was only there because nobody wanted him in the transfer window. I wonder why? I also wonder if that’s why we have Denilson, Diaby, Eboue and Rosicky still driving me mad. I hope not because if we could raise a couple of quid for them this summer it will go towards getting Wenger some decent glasses.

  31. PS. I don’t mind bad results – that’s part and parcel of being a football supporter and I’ve experieced a lot of those since I first walked through aa Highbury turnstyle in 1958. What I hate is watching a handfull of gutless, clueless prats being allowed to fuck up what could be a very good and winnig team.

  32. Paulie Walnuts

    Mainly good stuff on here this morning which is encouraging.

    It`s been a tough few weeks but we need some perspective.

    Football (& life) can change very quickly – great time to be a Gooner !

  33. Sorry for the re post but… Fuck me why is it the
    miserable cunts from that other blog always turn up when we dont get the
    result that is expected? You
    guys actually support the
    Arsenal? This sense of
    entitlement is infuriating, who the fuck gives you the right to demand we win
    every single game/
    competition we are involved in? What would you do if you supported –
    say- the Albion, or Liverpool? I was none to
    happy with the soft goals
    conceded, partly because I
    just knew the “realists”would come out the
    woodwork talking thier
    usual contrived bullshit.
    Here’s some realism for
    you- football is a game, and as such no one has a divine right to win, the Albion played very well,
    and you have to give the lads credit for turning the
    game around and almost taking all 3 points…

  34. I have to agree with your hit list Billboy, although at least Eboue does try to take the ball (and the team) forward, he just appears to run our of steam or ideas when he gets to the opposition’s area most of the time.
    What is particularly galling is that we persist with players like Diaby and Densilson when players like Lansbury that are coming through end up going out on loan for yet the another season.
    I appreciate AW’s view that bringing in too much “experience” may be detrimental to the development of some of the young players who need to get games, but carrying on with players who show that they just don’t have it at the cost of more promising players coming up behind just doesn’t make sense.
    Lansbury came back from a loan spell at the end of last season and had a good game against Fulham, I hope he’s back in time for the last game this season as I’d like to see him get another run out.

  35. Apologies for the double post.

  36. Terry and Deise,
    Yes one mistake. Its the howler for the second goal that’s getting people on his back NOW, and asking for him to be replaced by Lehmann. I’m not talking about mistakes he made earlier in the season. There is a reason why he became Wenger’s 3rd choice.

  37. Told you so!

  38. I agree with GA, I don’t think you can blame inexperience for the majority of our mistakes. Only Wilshere and Schezsny can use that excuse in our current 1st team.

  39. Balanced review as is the norm.

    Arsenal played hard for most of the game, things were just not coming off for us but I dont buy this nonsense about them not trying. The game changed because Arsene realized he had no choice but to go for it and put on 2 offensive players.

    We were controlling the match in the 2nd half but then the blunder.

    Tim, think its a bit harsh to expect the team to score 3 goals, and I dont think that United wouldve scored a third as a rule as you claim. Funny thing is that it is Arsenal who have the knack of scoring late goals.

    As far as United, what I have noticed is that they attack the space left by our left back mostly. I think Clichy will have to pick when to get forward. I have noticed many times, they seem to just kick the ball into that space knowing that someone will be there.

  40. Just one thing before I go…it was good to score two goals. I don’t think we have scored two goals against for a while (excluding Leyton Orient).

  41. – “against”

  42. Ramsey can use that excuse also, no? He did try hard but didnt look quite up to speed in this match.

  43. OMG, they are back.

    All i see is possibility until there isnt. I actually saw some fool say Arsenal fans should hope we come 2nd so that we can buy stars and fire Wenger or something. Talk about cutting off your nose to spite your face.

    who is that stupid?

  44. Agree FunGun, I think the last goal we scored was in the CC final too.

  45. What annoys me is that these people only come out after a draw, loss or mistake and then come out early. Do they get alerts when the articles are posted or something? They always seem to be the first posters! damn!!!

  46. @ Henristic
    Read more carefully. I said *some*. But my essential point was that every mishap is put down to one perceived problem and that is accepted without question as THE reason.

    Right. I’m off. I am going to try to take a break from blogging until proper football is back, which probably means I’ll be back on here tomorrow! 🙂

  47. I agree some fans want to see Almunia make mistakes and see our season wrecked. Thankfully they are utterly powerless to actually make any of these things happen. The fate of Almunia is in his own hands and maybe Wengers.

    Supporters didn’t make him commit the blunder he did yesterday, away from home. Even if it happened at home, it would reflect veeery badly on him indeed if he allowed the fans poor support to affect him negatively.

  48. What is for sure is that to be champion, we’ll have to score more goals than our defense concedes in the next 9 games

  49. @Henristic. I think its the place these fans come from. Its a little disfunctional with alot of these guys whishing for Almunia to flop. What happens if we win?

    Its like talking to spurs fans with some of these people. seriously. Its pathetic.

  50. I am hoping and thinking that the players will settle with each match and that they will trust eachother more. I am not expecting yesterday to happen again. Also, lets be just, Ramsey did miss an easy cover for the 1st and I think Kos failed to deal with an easy ball and gave away the corner.

  51. FG,
    So you weren’t diagreeing with GA then? We’re all saying the same thing? Cool.

    Don’t take a break from blogging…., comments from people like you make this blog worth visiting, especially when there is no football.

  52. Just wanted to pick up on a point made by Henristic about experience when he said, “Only Wilshere and Schezsny can use that excuse in our current 1st team”.
    If you look out our centre backs in particular it is very clear that we have a stark lack of experience: Squillaci may be 30 but he has never played in the Premiership until now, Koscielny is new to the Premiership this season having came from Lorient and only made 35 appearances there and even Vermaelen, who is clearly class, has only been with us for a season. That leaves Djourou who has only made 60-odd appearances for the senior side even though he has been a member of the squad since 2004, although I will concede he has been disasterously unfortunate with injuries. Whilst its incredible that we have managed to stay in the hunt with such an inexperienced defence, wasn’t it wrecklessly foolhardy to let experienced players go and not effectively replace them in either the summer or the January transfer windows?

  53. Chamakh is also inexperienced as far as the PL.

  54. Dave Downunder

    What a load of bollocks…I’ve never read so much arselicking support from people that are happy to run second for so long. Wake up to yourselves…we are soft with no spine. Don’t make excuses for mediocrity.

  55. I would like to commend Sqillachi for his defending on the 2nd goal. The ball too a funny bounce but he positioned himself perfectly to defend. Well done!

  56. No excuses for you then, less than mediocre support mind you.

  57. “downunder”, ironic, as you wish to drag everyone downunder with your negativity. move along if you dont like this blog, you will not be missed in the very least. bye!

  58. U̶̲̥̅̊ see if people on here fail Τ̅Ơ̴̴̴̴͡ realise that as a̶̲̥̅̊ team we have gone backwards since 2005 then the mass delusion Ȋ̝̊̅§ spreading faster thjan expected. After evcery losss wenger comes out Τ̅Ơ̴̴̴̴͡ say his team will learn απϑ cue a̶̲̥̅̊ win he comes out Τ̅Ơ̴̴̴̴͡ say again that the tean has matured. I understand that he has Τ̅Ơ̴̴̴̴͡ suport his players publicly,but  D̶̲̥̅̊☺ not understand why he puts up with the mediocrity that’s on offer. Denilson,Rosiscky,Squilachi,απϑ presently Diaby A̶̲̥̅я̲̅é̸ not good enough Τ̅Ơ̴̴̴̴͡ wear the shirt.How wenger refuses Τ̅Ơ̴̴̴̴͡  this Ȋ̝̊̅§ about the worst managerial failures in mordern football right up there with his inability Τ̅Ơ̴̴̴̴͡ build a̶̲̥̅̊ winning team. For the guy who says wenger turned us into a̶̲̥̅̊ big club…A̶̲̥̅я̲̅é̸ U̶̲̥̅̊ taking the piss? Arsenal has won 13 titles απϑ 3 eoropean trophys απϑ 10 FA cups Ω̴̩̩̩̥ọ̥w please if U̶̲̥̅̊ remove 3 titles,3 FA cups 0 european cuos how many A̶̲̥̅я̲̅é̸ trophys has he brought Τ̅Ơ̴̴̴̴͡ the club? How fickle people A̶̲̥̅я̲̅é̸. Wenger will leave the club someday S̶̲̥̅Ơ̴̴̴̴̴̴͡ when that happens  will ƪ​♥‎√ع Τ̅Ơ̴̴̴̴͡  the fan base of the club!

  59. Squillachi also made a great last ditch tackle, brilliant!

  60. Bob,

    Didn’t stop kicking the Aussies when they were down this time around. Lessons learnt.

  61. Is pharo9ja doomer casting dark magic spells over ACLF?

  62. Dave staydown under,

    Fuck off.

    It was a good performance, took some real spine to level the match after going two goals down. Excellent performance, after the horrible phase we’ve gone thorugh. Yesterday’s display shows we’re finding our feet again.

  63. I thought this match revealed other key points. Ramsey will take matches b4 catching up to his old form. Errors will follow his path and as fans we should just accept and hope their minimal, he is the future.

    Having Ramsey and Wilshere in the middle was ballsy from our manager – along with an ‘out of confidence’ Denilson. Yet I didn’t see WBA run over us in midfield.

    For 70 minutes the chemistry was struggling – our attack, rarely threatening; so why is that?
    Sagna, Clichy, Squil, Kos
    Denilson – Wilshere
    Nasri – vP – Arshavin

    Everytime Nasri or Arshavin received the ball on the wing…….they were double teamed and consequently, their offensive abilities hampered – and the Arsenal attack limped along for 70 minutes.

    When Chamakh and Bendtner came on – their presence consumed the WBA defense while Nasri and Arshavin found more freedom (tight marking) & space in the center.

    Maybe our manager needs to rethink what players can better support our most dangerous strikers (vP, Nasri, & Arshavin).

    re: Almunia
    Unfortunately this players strength is on the line; its never been his mobility.
    What is that expression? “A rush of blood to the head” – most appropriate for his decision to come out for the ball.

    For me the goal from Arshavin was monumental. The team attitude took an 180 degree turnabout. After Birmingham, Barca, and ManU defeats, this one moment of brilliance is what was needed to re-charge our confidence.

  64. In my paper this morning we had 75% possession,and 5 times the number of attempts.I have just watched the game again and although we were not good we were not bad either.We had 6 first choice players missing.We were 2 nil down away from home ,following what must have felt like a kick in the balls from Big All.,and got a point.And yet loads of our fans think we are a joke.
    Well its not the team that is a joke its the horrible bastards who want to wallow in misery .
    Denilson was poor.No fucking wonder,every time he plays ,no matter how good or bad ,he gets grief.His confidence is shot to pieces.
    Rambo was poor.No fucking wonder,he is coming back from a leg amputation.
    Our tactically inept manager made 2 very effective substitutions which turned the game around completely,despite us already dominating.
    Our useless lazy little Russian worked his little socks of a proved yet again that he is pure class.
    As if we all dont feel bad enough we have to listen to ignorant no clue halfwits making the performance out to be far far worse than it was in reality.
    There is a difference between constructive criticism and cuntsmanship.

  65. No Ateeb, he’s speaking in tongues.

  66. YW,


    So you see that too. I thought my browser had gone faulty.

    Perhaps the doomers are devolving.

  67. Someone just said what I here a lot,”this team has gone backwards since 2005.No shit Sherlock.
    Why do people compare this team to the greatest team ever to play in the English league?

  68. “If you remove 3 titles, 3 Facup titles, and 0 european cups(that might be dififcult to remove), what has he brought to the club?”.

    Priceless doomer comment.

  69. And what have the Romans ever done for us

  70. Kubla Khan – I would give you the Samaritan’s phone number but you are so fucking depressing. Remember when you slit your wrists, don’t cut across but cut up and down. Don’t want you making any mistakes.

  71. Pakistan looked good Ateeb.

    You could have India next the way their game is going.

  72. An Aussie commenting on Football? Should stick to Cricket……oh maybe not this year.

  73. In all conscience I couldn’t actually call that a comment MD.

  74. Bob,

    We were hoping that after topping the group, we could avoid meeting India. Oh well.

  75. Bradys right foot

    Kubla Khan | March 20, 2011 at 10:46 am | lmao m8, how long are you supporting the gunners?

    Post Chapman we were never a “big team” even under Graham. We are only a “big team” because Wenger has brought us success during the premier league years.

    Agree with every word of Yogis post and believe we have a real chance to close the gap on Saturday week, and the Hammers on the evidence of yesterday will give Utd a tough game. Ba and Cole will have a good go at Utds makeshift back four.

  76. Letter to le Boss:
    AW you have given us tremendous joy at Arsenal Fc. You have given us titles, wonderful football and the emirates stadium. This is why we fans love you enough to be patient for 6 yrs. Your youth policy is working because with this kids you have reached 3 finals, qualified for the champions league and produce great players like wilk, gibbs, fab, song etc. Why you let players like Diarra and Flamini go i don’t know. PLEASE Wenger we dont want to chase you out of arsenal because that will be so sad to treat you like this, but i must admit that you are not helping yourself. We all know that this team needs surgery to turn them from losers to winners. Please wenger if u invest in 3or4 world class players arsenal will be winning finals instead of loosing. I saw something against WBA , we were crossing the ball into the box for chamak & bentner , we were a threat. we can tipy tapy all day long but when teams park the boss we need aireal threat. Get rid of denilson, rosicky, almunia & squillaci and buy a striker like eto, a winger like ashley young, a defender like vidic a DM like flamini or diarra that you let go & a proven world class GK and see your youth turn into champions before you loose some of your world class players. these season is done start preparing for next season with all the above in mind. AW arsenal fc is not a joke club don’t make it one. Arsene you build the ship, now you must finish it, if we loose you then we have to start again, our rivals we catch us we will drop out of the top 4 sell all our top players including wilshere and your legacy wiill be flushed down the toilet no mater what success you brought arsenal. Sort it out Wenger the fans are turning on you. We do not want to see a AW out Banner at the Arsenal. You have fans all over the world even in Nigeria where we the Arsenal shirt with pride all because you play the beautiful game. Do not destroy peoples hope and heart in the beautiful.

    God BLESS AFC.

  77. Jesus wept.

  78. Berfore I start, I’d just like to say that Kubla Khan and Davedown under I c*nts.

    I was at the game yesterday and when the 2nd goal for WBA went in, there was a shit load of pissed off Gooners! Quite a few left when that goal went in. WTF was Almunia doing? A serious error of judgement and he seems to have a subconscious liking for WBA! maybe he has family there?

    The 1st half was probably the worse I have seen from this Arsenal team in a long time (propbably since the 1st WBA game) we were poor, huffing and puffing and going nowhere. Why was that? Who knows.

    Wilshere once again was carrying this team. A 19 year old carrying our hopes and that is fucking so sad.

    Once again we the away support was amazing, but, tellingly I dont remember the 1 Arsene Wenger! chant for the 1sttime ever, I think? maybe I am over playing things, but there was a lot of dissenting voices yesterday and although we really came back at them and a getting a poit still keeps things on our hands, getting a point from 2 games vs West Brom is fucking shit, same goes for Newcastle.

    The team are not shit, what the fuck does that make the chavs, city et al FFS? All the bollocks being written by cunts like Myles palmer and other Arsenal blogs make me want to puke.

    I wasnt going to post or even look on here today because I couldnt face the post match doom and gloom (I know I have added a bit today, sorry, but Im still huring here)

    WE can still win the league and everyone, including te players neds to hold onto that. Hopefully we will have Cesc, Theo and Song back after this long international break. The break could be the best thing that happens to us.

    Red Army!

  79. those who defend Almunia point out that it was due to similar mistakes by Lehmann that Almunia was promoted to #1 in the first place. I suppose this is some sort of distorted attempt to put the two players on the same plane. But after Jens was replaced as Arsenal #1, he went on to do a fine job as Germany #1 in the World Cup, and was #1 for a Bundesliga side for several more years. Who here thinks that Manuel would have a comparable post-Arsenal career? I don’t know if Jens still has it at 41 having been out of the game for a year, but I’d still be more confident in him than I am in Manuel.

  80. World class players.

    Kos – yep!
    Chamakh – close just needs to get his confidence back.
    Our 2 first choice goalies have been as good as anyone in the PL, apart from Cech maybe.
    Ramsey, Rosicky, Diaby have been hampered by Injuries but at their best are excellent players.
    The rest of the players are excellent back ups in my view.
    In my view, we have a host of world class players, the fact that most of them are the best players on their national teams speaks volumes to me but hey.

  81. Paul N

    We have a great team, they are suffering due to a wretched run of cup losses combined with bad injuries to very important players. Yet despite all that, we are still in it. Which is more than can be said for certain other teams, that appear to be completely free of any media influenced withc hunts and slatings.

  82. Go figure that out Dexter! its unreal the amount of trash people talk about our gem of a team.
    They can keep saying “I told you so” but we will say it last. Our team will conquer, of that I have no doubt!

  83. Letter to le Boss:

    Please ignore idiots like ola soaga and his ilk as they’d shit themselves at the prospect of managing Arsenal football club. You keep doing what you’re doing and rest assured that most supporters will be happy with what you do. By the way, say hello to Pat Rice for me.

  84. A championship should be earned through stylish football, hard graft, never say die determination, a will to win, strong leadership, an ability to win ugly when necessary, and more.
    Also it is won by managers who can motivate and get the best from their squad, who have the tactical nous to know how and where, a player fits in to the team, and the best position/s to play him in. He needs to be shrewd in his man management, and be willing to listen to advice and adapt accordingly.
    A title winning team is defined by how it can blend these factors and others together successfully and consistently.
    Does anyone honestly believe that the staff and players we have at the moment, are truly reflecting these qualities ?
    To win the title under the present conditions would leave me feeling empty. It would be a welcome, though hollow victory.We deserve better.
    “In Arsene we rust.”

  85. Ateeb  suppose U̶̲̥̅̊ starteded supporting arsenal in 1997? U̶̲̥̅̊  calling ♍e a̶̲̥̅̊ doomer doesnt change the fact that we’rE not going Τ̅Ơ̴̴̴̴͡ win anything with the dross we’ve got. Denilson,Diaby,Rosicsky,Arshavin(most of the time),Squilachi…how many games or rather will they win anything 4 us? U̶̲̥̅̊ guys  ♍e a̶̲̥̅̊ doomer but seriously A̶̲̥̅я̲̅é̸ U̶̲̥̅̊ guys satisfied with a̶̲̥̅̊ team that bottles it ALL THE !

  86. When certain players like Fabregas and Walcott are missing I am wondering whether 4-4-2 is not a better formation for the team?

  87. Walcott, Song, Cesc.
    All missing the past few matches.
    I believe we would have won the CC, CL and FAC matches with a full complement of our first team.
    It’s obvious that Theo stretches the opposition, apart from scaring the living daylights out of them, Song brings the ball from the back, allowing Cesc to take more attacking positions.
    It’s no surprise we have lost some of this killer instinct with Denilson, Diaby and Rosicky.
    It’s no use whining, we have Blackburn and Blackpool next and can make up points.
    United will drop points and we will prevail.

  88. Bradys right foot

    As the fourth choice centre half Squillachi more than foots the bill, yesterday the guy did nothing wrong, infact his diving block in the closing stages from Fortunae would have been hailed from the heavens if Cahill or Terry had of done it. Some fans are under the impression that you can have four world class centre half competing for two positions. You need an older stager like Squillachi as back up, you need an established centre half TV and two guys pushing each other to claim a starting place JD and Kos, Arsene has the mix exactly right. We don’t need asnyone else, we need to be a bit luckier with injuries. Anybody who can’t acknowledge the improvement in our defence, with JD and Kozzer being magnificent over the holidays, new year and up to JDs imjury has an agenda. Simply put they were the best in the league for three months.

    Chezney TV and Kos (and Squillachi v stoke) have been responsible for 7 clean sheets in the league since the start of 2011, to quote a certain spanish manager “That is a fact no”. The call for “a dominant centre half”, whatever that means is a lazy calous remark. If we need a dominat centre half then that must mean Utd need a dominant centre back as they have conceded more goals than us in the league. Almunia is the third/fourth choice goalkeeper, injuries again have cost us. Chezney and Fabianski if fit would have been infront of him. This is not a backhanded compliment and i’ll admit the logics twisted but because big Als done this type of thing before hell bunch back. Remember he was a mainstay of a team that went unbeaten for over twenty league games two or three years ago so i’m hoping we can rely on him for the last few games of the season.

    My glass is definately half full and the International break has come at exactly the right time. I think Theo has a huge impact on how effective we are as an attacking unit, Cesc has been sorely missed and the criminally underratteded Alex Song are all back for Blackburn. I’m sensing Rovers are going to get a bit of a smacking, pull your head out of your arse gooners and stand up for the team until the end of the season.

  89. Spectrum, what? strange comment!

    You can stay there feeling empty when we win the PL but I will be full of joy!

  90. Why is it when when Arsenal lose or draw, we have the worst defence in the league, yet when Man U, Chelsea, Man City or Spurs slip up its down to their injuries. The facts are that we have the third best defensive record in the premier league, yet from all the criticism you would think we have the worst. Perhaps our goals conceded are just mistakes whereas Man Utd’s goals conceded are all through good play by the opposition?I think not!! This has all been done without a no.1 CH for almost every match this season and injuries to our No.2 CH as well as injuries to our 3 keepers meaning we have had to use Almunia again and bring in Lehmann. Also everyone is moaning that we have all the posession but no end product, yet we are the 2nd highest goalscorers in the league and have still scored more goals than any other team in the Champions League this season. OK i know its not goals scored or goals conceded that is important, obviously winning matches is, well hows this we have won only one game less than Man Utd this season and still have a game in hand. In all competitions we have won more than Man Utd, we have won as many matches in the champions league as them (and Barcelona, i think?) this season, more matches in the carling cup, and only one less in the FA cup.

  91. Sri Lanka it is then.

    Spectrum you are talkin out your rectum.

  92. Paul N – Did you even read my post ? If you did, absorb the points made, think it through, and explain from where your joy originates.
    “In Arsene we rust.”

  93. dukeG Haha!

    Spectrum, is that your name because you are on the Autistic spectrum? Repeating that pathetic childish mantra after every post is kinda spaz-tastic. No offence to any spazzers out there.

  94. dukeGoonem – How about instead of resorting to mindless abuse, you refute my points using reasoning, which I presume you are capable of doing ? Though somehow I expect to be disappointed.
    ” In Arsene we rust.”

  95. Dexter – Same question to you, as I put to dukeGoonem. No doubt you will let me down also. ( Surprise me ! )
    ” In Arsene we rust.”

  96. I dont what you are on about Spectrum.

    The team is poised for greatness and we have a great manager. Im good with that.

    I will rejoice when we win and leave the rest to you.

  97. sound like you should say “In Arsene we rust”.

  98. Paul N – I thought that would be the best you could do. Easy way out. Have you heard of the saying “Ignorance is bliss ” ? Perhaps you can explain what it means ?
    “In Arsene we rust.”

  99. ok, I would prefer remain ignorant that write that nonsense you did.’

    How can it make sense for you to say you would feel empty if we win the PL.

    One cannot win the PL without doing things the right way, unless you are United.

  100. do i have to Spectrum? well i f i must, you say we are rusting under Wenger but we are challenging the title seriously which we havnt for a few years.

  101. Nice post YW.

    Ignore the bitter sp*d.

    * Clarification of two comments yesterday:

    > The Cricketer’s Handbook states ‘always get to the pitch of the ball on a spinning top’. That’s not always possible. Doesn’t really matter.
    > No opinion on Eduardo leaving or staying, am not in a position to comment. Considering the amount of games he’s been starting for Shaktar, he’s doing well, as expected. Nice to see a bit of speed and strength for his goal.

  102. Although I think Almunia was at fault for the second goal, it is understandable. Having the one and only Mad Jens waiting for his cockup does not help. I think he wanted to take initiatives and gain manager’s confidence in him by rushing out and getting the ball. Unfortunately ball movement defied him and he ended up conceding an otherwise avoidable goal.

    And another thing, I like to see my fellow countrymen on this blog. Like there was one fellow couple of months ago, when I triumphantly announced I was the “first” poster after Yogi. Not that he rewarded me anything (but I think Yogi should think of something to reward us :P). This Khubla Khan fellow is annoying. He doesn’t invest in any informative discussion occasionally occur here. I mean I don’t invest too but I don’t annoy either. What’s his agenda, or where does his allegiance lie? Does he support Arsenal? If he thinks Arsene is not good enough for Arsenal, then who is? Maybe he thinks Owen Coyle should be here in Arsene’s stead? Surely he knows that Arsene had transformed the Arsenal to today’s status. Or does he prefer Arsenal to be old mediocre “boring, boring Arsenal” (my apologies for old time Gooners or tribal Gooners as Kenyan Gunner would say)?

    Sorry for the rant. But this weirdo ruining one of my good ancestors name seemed a not good. And it isn’t even spelled as would any Mongol. Khubilai is the right spelling. And his full name should be Khubilai Khaan. With two A’s. Which is higher than Khan.

    Just wanted to say that we Mongols are generally positive nation and these kind of unpleasant provocations are not Mongol style.

  103. Paul N – Here’s another saying you might like to explain ; “There is none so blind that will not see.” Any other A.K.B.’s like to help him out ? Oh I suppose you all fall into the same category, hmmm ?
    ” In Arsene we rust.”

  104. tis a bitter a sp*d.

  105. Stratford or Bust 0 West Ham 0.

  106. Jamaican Proverb.

    “Empty” Barrels make the most noise”.

  107. Bradys right foot

    Spectrum Is this what weve got to look forward to from the doomers if we convert our mathematical advantage and win the league. I expected it from the press but from our own fans, doomer or not take a few days off mate you sound as if you need it.

    If we win and if you don’t enjoy that maybe Arsenal football club and your good self should part company. Opt out big guy fill your emotional void with something else, I feel sorry for you mate granted your not up there with the people of Japan and Libya but your emotional funk sounds like the empty sigh of a life unfulfilled, hate make you bitter if you could muster it mate why not try supporting the team in the last furlong of this season. If we don’t win there will be time to revel in the doom all summer, and god forbid if we do win you might actually enjoy it .

  108. dukeGoonem – “we are challenging the title seriously which we havnt for a few years.” And why haven’t we I wonder ? Could it be because the team and manager keep making the same mistakes season after season, and nothing ever changes ? And why don’t things ever change ?
    Can’t you all see that we’re likely to finish this season the same way we did in the previous six ? Think. Analyse. Ask questions of the team and management, and of the board. Don’t be taken for granted. Stop blindly following the pied piper that leads you down the same disappointing road every year.
    “In Arsene we rust.”

  109. Spectrum;
    Answer my question; Are you autistic
    You demand people to take your points seriously and debate them, then stop acting like a small child.

    “In arseholes we cuss.”

  110. “Why dont things ever change”

    I thought you liked repetition?

  111. Players greedy demands, principles in not giving into them is one reason, had Flamoney and Hleb stayed we would have won the title the following year, Luck as in bad luck,had Eds not had his leg broken we would have won the title that year. granted we could have done with a few purchases but i wouldnt say we are rusting. not like we are a million miles away from winning things unlike other clubs on our par.

  112. Yea Fucking Gods.

    OK a brief pop in – I will be back online later for a proper chat – but in the meantime some thoughts:


    WTF are you on? I can barely read the comments you have made. Stop fucking around and type in a proper font FFS.


    >To win the title under the present conditions would leave me feeling empty. It would be a welcome, though hollow victory.We deserve better.

    What utter bilge. A hollow title victory is one won through the foul means of others being discovered. This side will win the title through hard work. Please go and support someone else because, I mean this genuinely you snivelling little scrote, you are not welcome at The Emirates.


  113. Yogi

    I doubt the hollowed out shell of a fan is a Gooner anyway.

  114. I have read some crazy comments on here before but Spectrum takes the bacon.
    Strange, very strange!

  115. Yogi’s Warrior – O.K. you get your wish. I’ll leave you and your playmates in the kindergarten. I’m sure your uncle Wenger will see to it that you all stay happy and content.
    Unfortunately, one day uncle Wenger will retire, and you’ll all have to face being orphans. But you’ll see that life in football really does go on, you know.
    “In Arsene we rust.”

  116. David Luiz scores for Chelsea. And he’s had a great game!

  117. Yep, definitely autistic. Warped logic; check, zero social skills; check. Repetitive behaviour; check, ritualisitc obsessions; check.

    Get help dude.

  118. Spectrum

    I am deeply distressed that a numpty such as yourself will not be back.


  119. YW,snivelling little scrote.
    That just about sums him up.

  120. Bradys right foot

    Admit it Spectrum you were disappointed we came back to draw yesterday, the reason you wont enjoy winning the league is simple you hate Wenger. That makes it impossible to support the team through that prism. The uncomfortable reality for the IAWR brigade is we could win the league in a few weeks despite being ravaged by injury. For me everything is looking good not just for the league and this team going forward but If you look at the wider picture Batley, Landsbury, Frimpong, Ramsey, Wilshire, Chezney, Walcott, Wellington Silva all havelong and huge futures at the club. I’m going to stick my neck out here and say that Ryo Miyaichi is going to be one of the greatest attacking players of his generation, I hope we get a Fifa exceptional talent permit for the home office in the summer. Roll on Blackburn COYG.

  121. I quote from the blog ” the welter of abuse towards him is swelling”.
    What an indictment of Arsenal fans. This is about our current No.1 goalie, with only a 41 year-old waiting in the wings. He made a mistake. He has made many mistakes in the past. He will probably leave in the Summer.
    We lie second in the EPL, pressing for the title and EVERY one of our players is entitled to 100% support in every remaining game. What good can come from abuse towards a key member of a team pushing for glory? It just doesn’t make sense to me. Talk about “killing the golden goose” . The abusers are poised to press the self-destruct button and serve them right. Keep your adverse ranting and raving until the Summer where it belongs and direct ONLY SUPPORT for the team until then.

  122. Spectrum, I am wondering how old you are because the comment you leave at the end of each post, “In Arsene we rust.” is not a sign of any sort of maturity! All of your negativity appears to merely focus around the point of not winning a trophy in 5/6 seasons. While of course that is a disappointing factor it cannot be solely used as a marker for failure or success. During these trophy less seasons I ask you to look at the big picture, where have we finished in the league, were we always in the top 4? Have we been in the Champions League every season? Are we in financial ruin? Are we competing on all fronts? Are we grooming future talent? When you answer these points correctly, I hardly think that we are a team that is unsuccessful. Man City have invested millions in an attempt to “buy” the title but are they more successful than us? My point is merely this, success is not measured on trophy’s alone. Of course I am not saying that I am not disappointed to win trophy’s but it is the plastic fans such as yourself who really have no clue about running a football club and only exist in a world of everything is doom and gloom. Therefore you are entitled to your opinion based on the facts that you are basing it on but the more mature fans most likely see things some what different to the likes of yourself.

  123. Chelsea aint out of this, what are they 4 points behind us, we need to get our act together and get that winning mentality back.

  124. There is no such thing as an empty title win. You can win the lge title by luck; if we win the lge, it will be because we were the best side. The lge table does not lie.

  125. yes Duke, its getting sticky in 2nd place. City didnt do much though, why have all that talent and play cautious all the time.

  126. City played exactly as they did against us. No adventure, and played to not get beat.

  127. Yogi:

    Nice balanced post. Great that we were able to come back and get a draw. I said yesterday that the much hated international break actually is a good thing for us this year. Hopefully we can come back ready to fight and do whatever it takes to get the title.

    I know you do not want to hear any more complaints about our teams mental strength but it gets more and more difficult to not raise the questions. Costly mental lapses and the inability to play well in “pressure situations” (with a couple notable exceptions) is a recurring theme. If the team goes on a strong run for the last 9 games we can win the title it will put to bed all these concerns and prove the pundits and naysayers wrong. If we continue to struggle then it will get even harder to deny what on the surface seems an obvious conclusion. Nothing we can do now but hope the team can regain its mojo. If we continue to have these same issues the rest of this year then hopefully the boss will make some changes next summer.

  128. Gem of a goal from Ramires. Hope Denilson watched Luiz and Ramires. I believe he can do better!

  129. Come on! What? Nine games to go. manu to come to our home? A game in hand? Cesc back soon?

    Bloody hell, what more could anyone want?

  130. @bob,Djourou to have a RVP type recovery(that this time not his normal 6 months}

  131. That would be nice george but why make it too easy?

    Strife, problems, they all add to the tension and drama.

    Makes the victory all the sweeter.

    If the worst happens and we don’t win, well, that’s football.

    Next year always beckons.

  132. Bob,that is how I feel,I love everything about this team.Including the weaknesses and deficiencies.

  133. What an idiot. Spectrum asks others to think and analyse when he is utterly incapable of any coherent thought much less anything that approaches an analysis. Why don’t you practice what you preach you empty headed gimp.

    What sort of moron believes that there’s any sort of typical template for ANY championship winning side… the only common feature amongst the last few winners of the League title in England has been how much they’ve been willing to spend more than any tactical flexibility or even brilliant football. Titles are won in all manner of ways by all manner of teams and if there’s any consistent theme to winning titles it is that there are no consistent themes at all… some teams are so superior that their victories appear inevitable and others scrape and grind their way to titles. Some start slow and pick up steam and other start fast and stumble over the line… we all watch the game and we all know that referees decisions, blind luck and fickle fate as well as tactical acumen and technical ability all play a part in both success and failure. How about that, Spectrum?

    If Eduardo had not had his limb shattered at Birmingham would that team have won the league? Would Eduardo have gone on to become an Arsenal legend given the calmness and coolness he exhibited in front of goal? We would never know but the fact that we can even ask the question ought to tell you that winning isn’t merely about tactical acumen and technical ability… unforeseen events play their part too. Without the sending off at the Camp Nou would we have won? If a referee other than Phil Dowd had handled the game up at Newcastle how would the league table look?… the fact is that only an utter moron would claim that ONLY good management and good players win you trophies. Money invested, luck, refereeing competence, etc, etc all play a part.

    We have our faults (and so does everyone else) but we have also had a ridiculous amount of just inexplicable bad luck. Djourou suffers a potential season ending injury because Sagna runs into him. Szczensy catches a ball that he’d have caught 999 times out of a thousand and dislocates his finger and injures a tendon and all this happens in successive matches. Who can legislate for that?

    The bottom line for me is that a lot of these idiots who are demanding titles as a right are absolute fools. In a world where your team can only really spend a fraction of what our rivals regularly spend and where the men managing these rivals are not only competent but some of the best managers in the history of the game you cannot be capable of anything approaching analysis or coherent thought if you are DEMANDING titles. Idiots like Spectrum will only truly appreciate the genius of Wenger’s management when he leaves… these people are so stupid that they imagine that is NATURAL for Arsenal to spend a fraction of what Chelsea and City (much less Tottenham) spend and finish above them! That is the rank idiocy of people like Spectrum the actually imagine that Second in league and a losing Carling Cup final is the worst that can happen to Arsenal. Second in league is rusting to this fool… says it all really. Morons.

  134. Idiots like spectrum will never appreciate the genius of Arsene.

    Too thick, too much the me, me, me, now, now, now types so beloved of our media.

    Give them Maureen and a £50 million striker and they will be happy for a while in the same way that a slice of pizza and a lager makes them happy.

    Just not worth thinking about. A waste of time. Ignore.

  135. Limestonegunner

    It doesn’t look great, but if we win our game in hand, keep pace in the remaining fixtures with ManU and win against them at home, we win the title. So it is still in our hands, albeit our grasp seems weaker at the moment. This is no time to panic or turn on the club, manager, players. Hopefully Cesc, Theo, and Song will come back after the break and into the starting lineup. The defense is a worry as the injuries are more serious and long-term, but hopefully the CB’s and GK will gel.

    Brady’s left foot@2:56. I don’t think Arsene Wenger needs any real defense as the best manager in our history. So depreciating the club to do so is incredibly wrong-headed. How any Arsenal fan can assert that it was not a “big club” before Wenger is beyond me. We didn’t have the status we now have, but this is a very different era, the PL and CL has created a top strata of clubs of which we are thankfully a part due to Wenger’s management; we haven’t cemented that status in Europe by winning the CL but are established among Europe’s best for a decade.

    Before Wenger, we were nevertheless a big club in English terms with 10 league titles and 5 FA cups before Arsene Wenger. Herbert Chapman was a visionary and made Arsenal a “big club” as far back as the 30’s. We have had a league title in every decade after except for the 60’s. We also had the most famous, dramatic league title victory in English first division history in 1989. We have long been the biggest club in one of Europe’s great capitals. While we weren’t on the level of ManU and Liverpool and hadn’t had much success in Europe, we were still the third most successful team in England with a massive supporter base. By what measure were we not a big club?

    There is no need to rubbish our history to defend Arsene Wenger. That is simply perverse.

  136. The one thing I don’t understand is: Why the continued focus on Arsenal? Why not focus on Liverpool? Or Chelsea? Or Man City?

    Perhaps we should be flattered that the media expects so much of us, but wait, didn’t the media write us off at the start of the season? In that case, shouldn’t they be praising us for exceeding their expectations and instead castigating Chelsea and Man City for bottling things despite the cash splurges? Why the perverse interest in gloating at Arsenal?

    On separate note: If we win this title its because we were the best through the 38 matches relative to other teams. Saying stuff like “hollow trophy” because of rivals slipping up is retarded, because it happens every damn season! It’s like saying Usain Bolt won because his rivals were slower… duh!

    Ok I rest my case. We should really try to make it a mantra to just avoid getting baited by the doomers; I know reading their comments is an eyesore, but if we make a concerted effort to ignore them, they will disappear eventually. Or so the iron law of troll exterminating goes.

  137. it really seems like these people only come on here after losses or fuck ups. there were a whole slew of names up there that i never see during the week. and there are still people dropping that world-class tag. “Well this arsenal squad is great, but the defence really gets me nervous. Personally i think Arsene should invest in a world-class CB and a proven world-class GK that can win us some games” i’m getting really sick of reading these losers posts. But i am glad that there are some familiar posters out there who have fair opinions and those are the people that make this blog such a good read.

  138. Er, was it just me who was offered the chance to buy cheap bin bags from an American site through a link at the end of my last post?

    I mean, I am obviously honoured but wonder what I have done to deserve such an opportunity?

  139. hah i see that consols. YOU are the chosen one sir.

  140. Well, well.

    At last. Singled out.


  141. do you ever think about how cool it is that two people who are separated by tens of thousands of miles get to have chats about arsenal all with the magical power of internets?

  142. Are these morons for real? We’re in 2nd place, and look at all the doom and gloom. Fucking hell. Been here for 4 years, and I really believe that we haven’t been at a better position to win the league. And this is how the ‘others’ are feeling about our title chase? We can do without them. Fuck off to all these tossers.

  143. Limestone…

    You are absolutely correct that we’ve always been a grand old English club before Wenger, the fact though is that Arsenal are an infinitely bigger club now and that is down to one man if we are honest. And it is not enough to just look at our history, as glorious as it was, but it it is even more helpful to look at where we were headed before Wenger fetched up. I remember the air of regression and decline in GG’s last years as we relied almost solely on Ian Wright and signed dross like Kiwomya, etc. That’s before we get to the scandal of GG taking bungs to lumber us with those players. And then we had the chaos under Rioch as players became a law unto themselves.

    People often forget that great clubs can suffer serious decline too… Aston Villa have 2 European Cups to our none, look at them. Nottingham Forest have a glorious past too but Cloughie, for all his genius, didn’t really lay down any solid foundations for the club. Leeds are a grand old English club too… that’s before we get to Liverpool who were so utterly dominant in the 80s but find themselves being knocked out of competitions by the likes of Braga, against whom they didn’t score a single goal.

    I think that what hacks people like me off is all the sepia tinted garbage you get on some other blogs about how it is all rotten now and how GG would have won this, that and the other and how our players have no guts… it as if some folks want to use a half true past to beat up on the players and manager in the present.

    I will always remember Anfield in ’89. It was a glorious night and I am one of those who strongly believe that some of GG’s football is vastly underestimated and under appreciated by the myth that we only played negative football but I have to say that what is happening at Arsenal, even now after all disappointed hopes of this season, fills me with genuine pride.

    We are a bigger, better and much improved club with a clear identity and a culture that is being embedded that can, if properly managed, see us remain competitive at the very highest level for generations. That for me is the true mark of Wenger’s absolute genius. For me Wenger’s true rivals are not Mourinho or even Ferguson but men like Shankley and Rinus Michels. Men who built or rebuilt clubs by giving them deep rooted legacies which are far valuable than trophies alone.

  144. i truly don’t understand how fans are complaining when we are in 2nd place in the league. as has been said before, we don’t need you fuckin wankers

  145. I was trying to buy some cheap American bin bags this morning and I have lost the fucking link.

  146. Anyone seen the little blighter?

  147. I dont really get the media obsession with aresenal either. We are probably the most exiting interesting club in england really. They just wont admit it.

  148. Here you go Frank;

  149. Limestonegunner

    Joshua, I don’t disagree with you at all. I simply think the statement that we were not a “big club” before Wenger, made by an Arsenal fan, is ridiculous and unnecessary for establishing Wenger’s incredible legacy in our club’s history. Everyone here complains about how terrible the doomers are for slagging off our current team, but it took the whole day before someone defended the club’s history (without in any way diminishing Arsene Wenger’s achievements or the higher status of the club during his era–and I was in fact thinking exactly of Aston Villa as an analogue, as they were the 4th most successful team in England when Wenger took over at Arsenal, but they clearly did not flourish in the PL/CL era the way Arsenal has). That is a real shame, to my mind. I agree with everything you said. I think, however, you could acknowledge the context of my reply and the main point more directly: we were a big club for decades and it is unnecessary to diminish that status to appreciate and defend the accomplishments of our most successful manager.

  150. “Brian Spencer, 61, said that the behaviour of the 19-year-old England star was “the worst I’ve ever seen in my 38 years as a cabbie.””

    What sort of cabbie thinks someone spitting is the worst thing to happen in London for 38 years. I bet he does not get out much

  151. Limestonegunner

    Jack is absolutely legend.

  152. You heard it here first. Our next game is in 2 weeks. Walcott, Song, Cesc will all be fit. We’re going to win this league.

    Mark my words.

  153. Dups

    I’d be really proud of either of my sons if they behaved that way. Still, I’m damn sure that the cabbie in question would not run to the Mirror in the hope of making a quick quid or two if that’s the case.

    Yes, I am disappointed in Jack’s behaviour if true but let’s look at the behaviour of the cabbie as well. Quick to condemn celebrities and quick to take the cash because of cult of celebrity. And I bet his children were all angels…a hypocrite of the highest order.


  154. Sorry Cbob it was supposed to be for inexpensive American pasties.

  155. YW

    “a hypocrite of the highest order”. Very true.

  156. Limestone…

    I agree with you totally. It is not just unnecessary but in fact plainly untrue to pretend that we were not a big club before Wenger… even Wenger acknowledges that he has built on foundations laid by others. I really don’t think that the point is even arguable.

    It is also true that our big club status prior to Wenger’s arrival guaranteed us nothing in the EPL era and the fact is that we were regressing rather alarmingly. For me there are two things that absolutely stand out with Wenger
    1) The fact that he has been able to compete and triumph (people forget that even when we were winning we were still being heavily outspent) with a vastly inferior budget.
    2) That he was willing to give up winning trophies for a time at least in order to see us build the stadium.

    When I think of the modern Arsenal and the present day EPL those two facts are just mind blowing. In today’s world where a man like Rafa Benitez spent his entire time at Liverpool asking for more money, when Mourinho regularly threatens the owners of his clubs for not spending ever more dosh… when Spurs are willing to leave North London in order to cut the expense on their stadium to have a manager give up the chance of personal glory just so that he can lay foundations for others is just unbelievable. Wenger could have pushed for us to build the stadium somewhere on the M25 corridor and save money for example but instead he understood the need to remain in Islington as close to Highbury as possible! It is amazing really.

    Don’t get me wrong… Wenger is well remunerated for what he does (although he could conceivably earn more elsewhere and have a bigger transfer kitty too) and he isn’t a saint or an angel… but his whole attitude is still so at odds with the spirit of the times we live in that in some ways it is not a surprise at all that idiots like Spectrum don’t get it.

  157. Bradys right foot

    Limestonegunner | March 20, 2011 at 7:09 pm |

    I hear what your saying believe me I’m not running down the club, but when I was growing up there were only two “big clubs” Utd and Liverpool. I dont think despite Chapmans legacy that Arsenal were viewed on that level. Now we are viewed not just domestically but also in Europe as a massive club helped obviously by our yearly appearances in the Champions League. I wasn’t using our perceived status now as a defense for Arsene, the manager is incredible and we are lucky to have him. The point I was making was from the mid 50s onwards despite a brief spell in the early 70s until the Graham era as a supporter we weren’t on the level we are now, I think its fair to say weve grown as a club in recent years.

  158. 1 loose cannon

    Brady- Arsenal were among the most successful teams in England . . even before Wenger but he took us to a different level, he changed the style of football , now the ” Arsenal way ” is admired worldwide. Despite united huge recent success in terms of titles, we are only 5 behind . Liverpool 18. United 18, Arsenal 13. It is unfortunate that few Billionaires came to the premiership as we just moved to an new stadium and that made winning the title even harder. We are getting close every year. We still have a chance this year and I can’t see us getting any worst next season. So things are on the up finacially and on the field. It is a matter of time before we over take them

  159. Bradys right foot

    I’m getting a fair amount of stick for saying and I quote,

    “Post Chapman we were never a “big team” even under Graham. We are only a “big team” because Wenger has brought us success during the premier league years.”

    I stand by the sentiment although I should have mentioned Mee. You’ve got to ask yourself If we were not successful in the premier league era from 92-93 onwards how would we be viewed. The narrative of the club would be completely different and you can point back to the legacy of Chapman, Alison, Shaw and Whittaker but two generations of fans had been born and bred going to Highbury until Bertie came along, and another two generations until Graham. If we hadn’t have been successful in this modern era we wouldn’t be viewed as a big club despite our rich heritage. For those old enough to remember Wolves were once a massive club not anymore. A much closer parallel would be the Tofees, If we hadn’t have been successful in the modern era we may well have been viewed in a similar way to the fourth most succesful English club of all time. I respect their heritage but wouldn’t consider them a big club anymore.

  160. Limestonegunner

    Brady, fair enough and thanks for clarifying. Joshua and 1 loose, I agree fully. The man transformed the club. My hope is that this second phase of growth, along with fair play rules, will lead to a period of dominance during which Wenger’s genius will be universally recognized for not only its unique approach but for its resounding success as well. I enjoyed all those posts a great deal, thanks!

  161. Bradys right foot

    Nice one Limestone, I hope we can do it this year it would mean alot.

  162. RVP is really a gem of a player. I truly believe that you can show me any goal in the world and RVP could score it as well. He is the one player, even more than Cesc, that I hope will stay with us until his career ends.

  163. Joshua: “Don’t get me wrong… Wenger is well remunerated for what he does (although he could conceivably earn more elsewhere and have a bigger transfer kitty too) and he isn’t a saint or an angel… but his whole attitude is still so at odds with the spirit of the times we live in that in some ways it is not a surprise at all that idiots like Spectrum don’t get it.”

    If Wenger were anything like spectrum and his ilk he’d be sitting pretty at the Bernabeu throwing around cash for the fuck of it. He’s here to finish the project he started. Instead these morons think he’s making a buck off the players he buys and is involved in some sort of conspiracy to leave Arsenal cash rich so the club could be sold without debt. Seriously. Who the fuck would sell off a club like Arsenal when it’s debt free? Man IOU and Liverpool would give their left nut to be operating debt free right now.

  164. Spectrum/pharo9ja,

    I think you boys are letting your frustrations blind your reason. When intelligable, you arguments fly in the face of history and actual achievements. When not, your youth or frustrations (or maybe your ‘youthful frustrations’) shine through.

    To make contributions that add nothing is, I suppose, an art of sorts and I congratulate you on that alone. Read, watch and think more: the truth is out there (if not necessarily in the red top tabloid punditdumb(!

  165. Humph.

    Inexpensive American pasties manufactured in some redundant Ford factory in Cleveland and packaged with a cheap toy and Clotted Cream Slushpuppy no doubt.

  166. @dgob that is usually the truth about all the doomers.

  167. Our situation summed up very nicely by Arseblogger this morning.

  168. Right GA! This team does leave you confused!

  169. We can be like a bag of Revels. So good, but equally cabable of being just as bad.

  170. Watched the match live on Saturday. What angered me was that we seemed complacent until we went 2 down.

  171. I think it’s pretty simple – we’re missing 6 of our first 11, down to our 3rd choice goalkeeper, 3rd and 4th choice CBs and are collectively trying to get over a couple of nasty shocks. Nasri and RvP haven’t quite found their pre-injury form yet, JW’s had to play more games than anyone would have wanted, and replacements like Denilson and Diaby, who have performed really well at times over the last couple of years, are stuck in the doldrums for different reasons.

    The good part is that we showed some real fight on Saturday, should have players back soon and spring has just started.

  172. Interesting thread by led by BRF, limestone, Joshua et al.
    Everyday I learn more about this great club to whom I became attracted relatively recently and which I quickly began to appreciate was one of the greatest football clubs in the world. In my many years of playing (poorly) and watching football I have seen no other club with a philosophy of attractive football, openness to all talent regardless of nationality (I don’t check on passports when selecting my team) combined with fair-play and self-sufficiency. Trust me, by dint of experience and many sporting political heartbreaks, I am a hardened sceptic. Under Wenger, my faith in the sport of football, after the dirge I witnessed from the late 80s to the 90s, was fully restored.

  173. OOU – I agree we did show some really fight to get back into the game. I actually thought we would go on and win it to be honest. But we also showed how slack we can be at the back for the 1st goal. The 2nd goal was just a clanger pure and simple.

  174. We can’t do much about that anyway, GA – just hope that Almunia’s got it out of his system now!

    And also, that bounce was totally fucked. It was almost the only place it could have gone to put Almunia in trouble, which sort of summed up our recent luck I suppose.

  175. Our rebirth starts today!

  176. OOU – Yeah hopefully. That type of incident is why he lost his place in the 1st place though. The bounce really had nothing to do with it, it should not have been there in the 1st place. Old argument though eh?

    Hopefully it will focus him for the remaining games, as until the weekend he had been very good.

  177. Alex Ice Cream

    A goal from a set piece and then another Howler from the worst Arsenal goalkeeper since George Wood.

    I could be describing any number of games from the last few years not just Saturday. Was anyone surprised? No. We have had these weaknesses for years and Wenger simply cannot solve the problems.

    60% possession and one shot on goal in the first half, WBA scoring from their only attempt on target. Rubbish, utter rubbish. 1 point out of 6 v WBA, 2 points from Sunderland and we are the only team not to beat them in their last 6 games, 2 points from Newcastle, even though we were 4-0 up in the away game. 1 clean sheet in 12 with Kos and Squilacci at the back. Great teams don’t get results like this, but we are not a great team.

    Let’s hope we can get some players back during the break otherwise we could find ourselves being overhauled by Chelsea for 2nd, never mind the title.

    Ggreat comeback and a wonderful goal from Andrey but we should never have been 2 down in the first place.

  178. AIC – None of what you said is wrong.

  179. The more your look at Utd’s run-in the tougher it looks. Especially when you crowbar in cup games against Chelsea and City. Lots of teams fighting against the drop… plus some others like Everton and Fulham who are always harder to beat than you think. And they’ve got problems at centreback too.

    Fabregas, Song and Walcott could be the difference. All match-winners. Get them fit for Blackburn and the momentum’s with us again.

  180. finishing third isnt even worth thinking about..
    if chelsea take us then this season has been a total disastor and serious questions need to be asked about this squad and the manager..

  181. GA, Almunia’s only in the team because of bad luck; injuries to the two players ahead of him, both of whom performed well enough to nail down a starting spot. Fuck, even Mannone would have had a shout, but he’s also injured. So that’s three out of four out. At time like this you’ve got to take a different tack; he’s all we’ve got at the moment, so what’s the point in slating him?

  182. we are having problems with our own fixtures theres no point looking too deep into utd’s
    we are having problems with our own defence so theres no point looking too deep into utd’s

    the leagues in our own hands…. fuck utd..
    no excuses…

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