United We Stand Or Divided We Fall?

Manchester United arrive at The Emirates for the match that will decide the outcome of the Premier League title. Victory for the hosts today followed by defeat for today’s visitors next weekend, will see the Premier League trophy back in London.

A fortnight ago, that sentence would have ended with Arsenal. Now it is Chelsea. Such are the fickle fortunes of football; so wafer thin is the margin of error. The recriminations will continue long into the summer, the entrées have been served over recent weeks.

Today though, is a chance to put that to one side. A victory will not make the Arsenal world right but it will make it a happier place to be. Orbinho came up an interesting stat on Twitter yesterday: The 1st time Arsenal went 3 home league games without a win under Arsene Wenger was in Nov 2001. The run ended with a 3-1 win over Man Utd.

Whilst a similar result today might just hand the title momentum to Chelsea, frankly I’m not bothered. Victory over United might go some way to laying the ‘big game bottlers’ tag that has been handed to Arsenal. Defeat will simply serve to reinforce the prejudices which are being served with some relish.

By Wenger letting the players accept responsibility, Winter means let the press hang them out to dry instead of dealing with matters behind closed doors. The self-importance of the media knows no bounds.

The players have taken responsibility, all of the comments that have been made recently by Djourou, Sagna and Walcott have been mea culpa. Of course, Winter’s perception of weakness is one viewed oppositely by the players,

The great thing about our manager is he always deflects things on to himself and keeps things completely away from the team. But that is where we need to help him out and we haven’t done that in previous weeks.

Thus spake Theo. There is an underlying reason for this desire,

Maybe instead of waiting for things to happen, we are going to make things happen. We need to do it for him. He has shown so much belief and support in us – and the fans have done exactly the same thing.

In other words, the behind the closed doors meetings alluded to by Sagna have seen the players accept their failings. Now it is all well and good have these clear the air talks but unless something comes of them, they are pretty pointless.

Today is the chance for that to happen. Finishing the season on a high with victories in the final four fixtures will not ease the pain but restore the confidence which has been so sorely missing in recent weeeks.

The team will not be showing many changes from last Sunday, if any. Thomas Vermaelen has apparently come through the reserve outing against Manchester United’s equivalents in midweek but this is too soon, surely? Wenger noted that it was but things may have changed over the bank holiday.

Which means that the individuals who succumbed meekly at The Reebok have the chance to rectify the situation:

Szczesny; Sagna, Koscielny, Djourou, Clichy; Fabregas, Song, Wilshere; Walcott, van Persie, Nasri

We know how United will play against Arsenal, they have done so successfully in recent seasons by flooding the midfield and hitting on the counter. Patrice Evra took time to change his tune to being wary of the Arsenal players’ wounded pride, as opposed to his usual bellicose dismissal of boys against men.

Arsenal can win this match, at home they have proven this season that they are not afraid of the top four. Yet those were wins achieved when confidence was high. More than anything, Arsenal have shown that they are brittle in that respect at the moment. A win today would do much to restore the mental toughness required next season.

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

Posted on May 1, 2011, in Arsenal, Football, Premier League, Premiership, Soccer and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 360 Comments.

  1. Yes, indeed. Time to put the big game bottlers tag to sleep like an old, sick dog. Time for each individual to show that they are worthy to be included next season. The Battle of 2011-2012 has already begun.

  2. We will win this one. I can feel it…

  3. As is derigour from Monsieur YW good post ..Today is the day when some pride can be restored..I sit n hope and wait with great anticipation..Onwward Forward..

  4. But is this a big game? You could argue it isn’t as there is nothing depending on it so there is no pressure on the team.
    “…at home this season they have proven they are not afraid of the top four…”. If you take the top four as being the top four in the table excluding AFC the we have garnered 4 points from nine so far. Hardly impressive.

  5. I wonder what today might tell us.

    Pressure is off. Will that let them play with their true ability?

    Alternatively, are they finished for the season and will buckle?

    We have expected a lot this season. Did the players believe as much as we did?

    Today might give us one or two insights.

  6. our form is terrible
    fergie has the number over wenger tactically
    we havent beat utd since when??

    im not expecting anything but it will be interesting to see what we actually do today…

  7. Consolsbob, I don’t know whether the players believe as muck as we did but I can tell you they certainly didn’t appear to cars as much.

  8. I’m sure they cared Billboy.

    The question is whether they had the strength and application to deliver.

  9. Today is like a dead rubber in the Davis cup.You are 4-0 down but you win the final tie

    We will probably win today and the majority of fans will go home happy.But a victory after the title has been lost is not a victory to celebrate.In 2ooo and 2001 we finished 18 and 10 pts behind Utd but in 2002 we won the double
    What happens today doesnt matters its what happens in the summer that does

  10. george rodger

    I fear the worst.Not only for today but for next season.
    This is the first time I have felt this way.
    There is a real chance that we could lose three of our four best players IMO.
    Cesc ,Samri and Arshavin could leave.
    Now people can talk all they want about strengthening the squad,but there is no chance of us getting three players better ,or indeed as good ,as them.
    Maybe I have just gotten out of the wrong side today or perhaps the last two months have finally gotten to me ,but despite the promise of the team I feel less optimistic than I have for a long long time.

  11. i think that questions already been answered cbob..

  12. It has jj.

    George, nil desperandum.

    I would miss Andrei but he hasn’t been the player that we all hoped he could be consistently. Goal of the season for me was his against barca. I don’t understand why he hasn’t kicked on from some of his terrific early performances -Liverpool springs to mind.

    Cesc, well. Many doubt his comittment to arsenal and his love in with barca is hard to stomach when you watch them play. He would be hard to replace but if he went then i think we would see a different playing style emerge. Who knows, maybe more effective.

    Sami. He’s going nowhere.

    This team will be different this season. Better.

  13. your not alone george

    i think its sad that a few week back this game was a must win for us to win the league
    now its a must win for chelsea
    and for us its only about pride…
    thats a shitty position to be in and i really hope we wipe the floor with these fuckers but ive seen nothing from them in the last few months to suggest we will..

  14. george rodger

    Bob,I desperately hope so.
    And that sort off lift me up comment is why I come on here so much.
    I want to feel positive but when people keep being so negative it is hard not to become infected.
    So ,note to self,buck up George.

  15. bob
    We will only be better if we bring in better players than the ones we have.Nasri has one year left on his contact.He can go on a free next season.Are we going to let a £25m player go into his last season knowing he can leave for free in 12 mths.

  16. arse or brain

    how can anyone sugguest this is like a dead rubber, manure have to get points and as regards to ourselves a win today would prove we can beat them and remove the fear for next year . this is still an important game and well worth winning and at least suggest were getting closer

  17. Paulie Walnuts

    It would be nice if the players did their talking on the pitch today & gave Man Ure a proper game.

    The first goal is massive confidence wise

  18. Hang in there george rodger. it really depressing right now and the boys need to man up and next season and show us what they are made of.

    Having said that, Forget those negative and media people. they would be happy to see Arsenal fail. We just need to support the team and one day we will win. Maybe Arsenal fans may lower their expectations as well and just support the team. But not only do the boys need to figh back the supporters need to fight back against the negativity. To ba fair, our own fans have given the media this much of a hold. Arsenal fans bent over and are being screwed.

    its time for the boys and the fans to stand tall. We will succeed.

  19. i dont know if we will win today. Based on our crappy form, no. but im hoping today they can find the magic.

  20. i hope we dont get hammered today..
    if we are going to lose then at least lose with bottle…dont walk into the same trap fergie sets game after game against us..

    wenger needs to switch to south paw..confuse the shit outta fergie and come out swinging..

    if we lose we lose but dont lose doing the same thing over and over..

  21. If Nasri does not sign a new contract then he will be sold but why do you think he won’t, Tom?+

    Better players, yes, but what do we mean by better?

    Fletcher and Park, for example, are not as talented or skilful or clever as, say, Arshavin but they have performed when they were needed consistently.

    What does better mean then?

  22. arse or brain

    we have had various games where we have thought many of our young sides have finally grown up only for them to then take a backwards step,chelski being an obvious example . I think today can be another big step forward with a win and then a positive end to the season which will make a big difference for the attitude next year

  23. personally id like us to switch to 442 today

    utd are likely to just soak it up if we play 451..vidic and rio will just double mark robin and ji sung park will help evra tag team theo..
    they’ll then break and rooney will exploit the gap we leave between midfield and defence as we try the tippy tap and they will overload clichys side…

    so lets plug those gaps…play 442..give help to clichy on the left tell song to stay back and cover the space rooney likes..
    move theo uptop with robin and tell him to play off the last man..bamboozle rio and vidic with pace so rvp can use the space.. lets target their weak links…rapheals a sucker for a red card so tell nasri to keep running at him..carricks shit so put him under pressure early and force the mistake..

    fergie has the 451 worked out if we play like that today we need to be on top of our game and play a blinder to beat them..but we havent been on top of our game for months..

    change it..442..lets go after em..

  24. Borges Spinelli

    Greetings, beloved ACLFers.

    So far, so good, our warriors are talking up a good game. Believe that you have it, and you do. Sure, they have what it takes to whoop Manchester United, on any day of the week. Belief is indispensable. Do the players genuinely, believe that they can overcome their nemesis this time? That’s to be seen.

    Come On You Gunners! Time to show ’em what we’re made of!

  25. Paulie Walnuts

    Good question Cbob,

    Maybe the likes of Park & Fletcher know their limitations & work purely for team in a way that perhaps Parlour & Grimandi used to do for us. They tend to give overall balance to a side despite not having the natural skills of others.

    They`re no `better` than anyone at Arsenal & yet appear to be vital to Man U – although you can guarentee they`d be slaughtered by our fans if they were playing for us.

  26. arse or brain

    JonJon, totally agree this will also make bentner and chamakh more effective if and when needed and make us less exposed to fergies only tatic sit back and counter quickly much like every small side who come to Arsenal

  27. hello everyone,good post yogi.indeed we need to restore our pride.a win this afternoon would be a good birthday present for me.

  28. I agree Paulie.

  29. george rodger

    We will only be better if we bring in better players than the ones we have

    I am sorry Tom but that is absolute rubbish.
    The difference between 2001 and 2002 was NOT any better players being signed,it was players like TH ,Bobby and Freddie improving.
    So people should remember that when claiming signings is the only answer.

  30. george rodger

    Ok Paulie I am back.

  31. george rodger

    Sorry I meant Goonerwife

  32. I just hope the players enjoy themselves. There is no title depending upon the result, well not for us anyway. Its a chance to play without fear, nervousness, and ofcourse the same intense pressure. If we enjoy the quick passing game with the ball, and put 100% effort and concentration into our game without the ball…well we stand a good chance of winning

  33. The gr*tty Craig Gardner has been sent off for simulation (second yellow!).
    Brilliant.

    I’m going to consider that to be a good omen before I set off on the long trudge up to the new Arsenal Stadium.
    Fabregas to score a hat-trick.

    COYG.

  34. if chelsea go on & win the league,there wil b trouble in my area becos the fans re loud mouthed,thugs &menace 2 society hence i want man u to win it

  35. Another nice post Yogi:

    Not much else to say these days. I think the Manc’s will come in over confident and we will pick today to decide that we are going to show the rest of the football world that we are better then we have played in the last couple of months. I would be happy with a scrappy 1 – 0 win but I hope for a repeat of the 3 – 1 scoreline you mentioned in the post. Strong finish will not erase what has happened and hopefully will not blind the brain trust at London Colney that some things need fixing but it will give us some needed momentum to start next season and restore some self belief.

  36. Need to beat the mancs for our pride sake.

  37. anyone know the lineup yet?

  38. no cesc

  39. yogis lineup

    rambo in for cesc though

  40. come on aaron

  41. no Cesc, Ramsey starts! The rest as expected

  42. COYG do it for london pride and shut those mancs up

  43. JJ…where have you seen that Cesc is not playing?

  44. Wow…is he injured?

  45. If he isn’t injured I fear this could be an audition for his midfield spot going in to the summer.

  46. Well that should prove interesting. We all know Ramsey got what it takes. Imagin beating United with no cesc. That would be hard to swallow for the English punditery…

  47. hah and it would make it even more fun that he signed for Arsenal and not united muahahah!

  48. It would be great to see Ramsey play a blinder…Hasn’t he dominated the likes of Carrick and Fletcher before on International duty?

  49. Sky sports doing a good job of rubbing in the trophy drought. Thanks for that. Only one way to answer the critics.win….win…win….

  50. george rodger

    No matter what people say about Cesc. your heart sinks when he is announced as “no Cesc.”

  51. No Cesc? Is he hurt? May be he pulled a hamstring in training.

  52. So they are saying Cesc is out injured…I have a weird feeling about this one. I think Wenger may have lost his patience with him and his desire to be with the Cuntalans…I am usually no conspiracy theorist, but this has the feel of those injuries that have hit our goalkeepers in recent seasons.

  53. ces is injured the arsenal.com page says. Injured during training. Does not say what it is though…

  54. I hope I am wrong…would be a real shame.

  55. wenger says cesc hurt is thigh before kick off..

  56. kick on the thigh for Cesc says le boss. apparently the vibe from cesc is he isnt leaving (just yet)

  57. So our midfield today is future captain of England, captain of France and captain of Wales? One should assume there is enough leadership on the pitch atlest….

  58. I really want him to stay…but I do think that RVP or Vermaelen should be next season’s captain.

  59. conspiracy theory – that interview cesc gave to the spanish rag where there was critisism of wenger = so wenger drops cesc as a slap on the wrist. not like wenger though to shoot the team in the foot like that – or is it!!!!

  60. I feel by streaming the game i say ” fuck you Sky, i aint giving you money cos you suck !”
    Makes me feel good.

  61. I look at that manu midfield and subs bench and think…how haven’t we won this league?

  62. me too cbob
    me too..

  63. We look good so far. Too bad Jack didn’t get it on target or else we would be up 1 – 0

  64. but then i look at 3 of their 4 defenders and and keeper and think of their consistancy – thats been obsolutely key for them this season make no mistake

  65. if we beat united today we have beaten both the CL finalists this year.

  66. Oh FFS! I’ll take a win any day over no win you muppet, Tom. Yes, you make some sort of a point about what happens in the summer but I am simply astonished at the attitude you display.

    Read an interesting article yesterday that put a lot in perspective for me. Consider your reactions to the thought that if the “Wenger out” idiots have their say any new manager who comes in would be quite happy to finish third in the league in his first season. Consider how you would feel about that and what that means.

  67. FFS pundits just need to shut up and die. Clear foul on Wilshere.

  68. Is it just me or are united just taking the piss by trying to ‘cruise’ through this game with minimum effort?

  69. Henristic,

    It’s their tactics, just sit back relax let us huff and puff and hit us with a long ball counter attack.

  70. Another pen we should’ve had. F*ck it.

  71. lol lost one more penalty..

  72. fukin lucky cunts.

  73. Look at that deliberate Vidic handball and tell me that they don’t get more decisions than we do.

  74. Arparantley everybody missed that hands so its ok the commentators says…

  75. Borges Spinelli

    Why weren’t we awarded a penalty for the deliberate handball in the penalty box by Vidic?

  76. omfg..

  77. Honestly though, so far, Ramsey is preatty good. IF Cecs stays one more season he wont have to play so many matches as this year cos Ramsey seesm truly up for it. means he will keep fresher.

  78. Borges Spinelli

    That butt wipe deserved the yellow card. Can’t stand him.

  79. But they usually show more fight than what I’m currently seeing. I’m talking about in 50:50 duels etc.

  80. Is it because we only got RVP as striker that we never seem to have alot of people within the box?

  81. this smacks of same old same old
    lots of possession, lots of territory…no finish…

    manu have come to sit back….they’ll wait for the chance

  82. United get the obligatory non-penalty call for the day…I would expect nothing less.

  83. yes poodle..
    and when robins drops deep theres nobody at all

  84. Unfortunately the pattern of this game looks all too familiar to this point.

  85. I agree on Ramsey, poodle.

    JonJon,

    Seems like you’re waiting more for their chance to come.

  86. this ref is shit
    thats 3 times hes got in the way
    unfit dumb fuck

  87. ateeb
    ive seen this script many many times
    its how they beat us…

  88. It really would be terrific for Ramsey to score a screamer on his first start of the season. Gotta love Wilshire too…that boy has some fire in him…giving Evra an earful into the tunnel.

  89. Well, I’ve seen it all now.

    Not only do referees feel free not to give us a penalty and send off their centre back for a blatant handball to stop a goal but they intercept our passes and body check our players.

    Foy is way past being a joke.

  90. dont worry the dodgy refereeing will even itself out!!!!

  91. Well the team is trying hard, I think we should stop being negative, those of us who are.

    Henristic, why would a team who is trying to win the PL not be taking the game seriously?

    How could they not see that blatant handball?

  92. oh fuck me thats a nailed on pen and a red…

  93. Chris Foy playing as the holding midfielder for United?

  94. The linesman should’ve seen it. He was right in line, no one else in his way. He has no excuse for not seeing it.

  95. Does anyone else think there should be two referees on the pitch at all times. In Hockey the switched to it after a hundred years of having a single ref on the ice and it has worked well…Will football ever get dsome common sense and try something different in an attempt to make the game more fair. That combined with replay technology and these travesties would, for the most part, be a thing of the past.

  96. I dont blame anyone for being negative after the fukin season we have had.

  97. okay manure had what, two shots on goal in the first half? surely our defense isn’t as shit as many think.

  98. The non award of what should have been a clear penalty just raises the question once again of why goal technology is not introduced..Wilshire should have the hit target first half…Got to be aware of the counter Man U trying a rope a dope on us..

  99. Our defense has been our posession game. Our back four are sniffing a lot of the long balls out as well.

  100. Good to see the chasing and tackling when we lose the ball..68% possession against united does not come easy..A bit more barca-like today without the ball..

    Barca-like except for the playing with 14 bit..united have that one sewn

  101. I bet the linesman did see it, or he was 99% sure he saw a hands but thought that “if i rais my flag now and its wrong then SAF will come down on me like a ton of bricks and i am 1 % sure it was not hands so i just go with the flow on this one, Besides VIdic is a top defender, he whould have preventer that goal anyway”.

  102. its not just dodgy reffing duke
    foy is not fit enough to officiate this game..and i mean that literally..
    hes got in the way 3 times..hes supposed to be invisible hes supposed to get out of the way…hes got the reflexes of a slug…

    if this is the required standard for top class refs then god help the future of football…

  103. I thought Foy was a pretty good MU DM

  104. @viceologist
    Just replay tech would be enough. Give both teams a fixed number of replays, say two .. if you use it and you get the decision right, you keep your replay, else you lose it. It would neither slow down gameplay significantly nor would it lead to thousands of stoppages. But it would ensure that the difficult and important decision are gotten right.

  105. 2 refs I tell ya 2! Fitness would be irrelevant…and one ref would always be close to the play…worth a try.

  106. true jon jon. there was one incident on the left flank and Foy was standing flat footed and nasri/clichy passed the ball right into his feet!! i’ve never seen the ref get hit thrice in one half.

  107. Not talking about the season Duke.

  108. Besides, they added 2 refs in CL and what difference did it make? I’ve never, ever seen one of those two added referees do anything. What’s their purpose? Or is it just a way to sell some ultra-premium seats that bring you closer to the action than ever before??

  109. THe entire team has done well tracking back today, and won alot of the second balls and all that. Really makes the diffrence for us. We dont look like the least agressive team today(xcept for rooney ofc). We look agressive and ready to fight for every ball.
    It would be typical that Bendtner came on scored a goal and celebrated by lazily chewing his gum to say to everybody ” see? see? i told ya! im the best in the world”.

  110. Can’t say I’m suprised with ref-ing. We should be playing against 10 men.

  111. I think they should look at all options abvailable to try and correct the problem. It is making the games feel more like a lottery than a sporting contest these days. It is desperately needed for the integrity of the game…When every other major sport employs technology to aid officials, it raises a huge red flag…seems as though certain people have a lot to gain from keeping the status quo…The ability to subtly, or not so subtly influence results would be out the window…

  112. evil, i think UEFA just got these extra guys to engage the placebo effect. “hmm extra refs? must mean they get more calls correct.”

  113. Vicelogist,

    Two refs would complicate things for teams like ours. We’re already finding it difficult to penetrate their defense since Foy has had a brilliant game as a holding midfielder for them. If there was another ref, who knows the other ref might be making assists for Hernandez. Bad idea.

    Evil,

    Goal line technology would make sense, but I doubt this hand ball was too difficult to spot. Freaking ridiculous decision.

  114. As I belive Passenal stated that some of Vidic’s greatness is that he gets away with much. If the refs would blow the whistle he may be looked upon as a penalty waiting to happen. I have seen him get away with many a bad tackle.

  115. nasri off?

  116. i gotta feeling if manu dont pick us off AA will win us this one
    more of the same first half except
    foy get out of the fucking way
    lino open your fucking eyes
    arsenal fucking shoot

  117. Hamstring problem for Nasri

  118. i Think both Rio and Vidics greatness is based much on that Paul N. With two defencers like that, with greatness based on those premisses no wonder you win alot.

  119. Has Fergie ever come out to support any form of video tech? I know Arsene has.

  120. @ poodle | May 1, 2011 at 3:03 pm |

    ha ha! you got that right.

  121. i like loongshoots,. more of them and we can score ! 😀

  122. Defence caught napping there. Lucky that hernandez missed that cross

  123. Afraid a 0 – 0 draw in the cards. Hope I’m wrong, but neither team looks like a good shout to score at this point.

  124. is the ref going insane now? he certainly seems keen on giving United as many freekicks as possible in dangerous places…

  125. RAMBOOOOOOO

  126. yes yes yes

    come the fuck on yeah

    get in rambo

  127. Limestonegunner

    Ramsey!!!!!

  128. FUCKING AARROOONN RAAMSSEEYYYY!!!

  129. There’s only one Aaron Ramsey!!!

  130. First Blood – Rambo!

  131. yesss….!!

  132. Let’s keep the ball for 10 minutes. Let’s not concede now. Please! Please!

  133. Limestonegunner

    Cool as you like! First touch, through the legs and into the corner past the keeper. Quality, pure quality.

  134. muahaha cesc watch your back, you will get fierce copetition if you stay here. Maybe its safer to go to Barca. Cos ramsey is back!

  135. Now, United gotta come out and play. That smug attitude of theirs was always gonna bite them back in the arse.

  136. Has Arshavin ever been fouled since Russia won the competition to host the World Cup?

  137. What are the odds of ManU being awarded a penalty kick within the next 10 minutes?

  138. Limestonegunner

    I agree with the commentator–would like Chesney to come for that corner.

  139. agree ateeb
    keep it together..
    keep it basic dont give them anything no fouls no pens just keep it tight..

  140. Quite high, Mentalist. This is a joke, this refereeing.

  141. Wow was I wrong. Aaron Ramsey!!!. Now lets hold on to the lead.

  142. Limestonegunner

    This ref is itching to give ManU something–why didn’t he card any of the ManU players for tussling with Song?

  143. FG, I was already waiting for the whistle in this last play…

  144. would not suprise me if he made Ramsey cap tbh. hes the walse captain and is beeb known to be vocal in the dressing room despite his young age. He got proper pondus that man.

  145. @ Jon Jon
    You mean don’t attempt a tackle? Don’at try to win the ball?

    ***
    What’s happened to Djourou?

  146. “pondus ” – never heard that one before.

    Come on Squillers!

  147. And VIdic must be the unite mom. Hes handballed in the box and sent Djorou off. He has also bought them plenty of fergie time with that djoru injury.

  148. Ramsey back to his old self. Agree could be our Captain, him n Wilshere will be a class act for many years for us.

    Clear as ever we need a cb, we will not get a full season outa Jd.

  149. i mean keep possession..
    so we dont have to attempt anything

  150. omg he gives United a freekick for handbal.. geeez

  151. Stupid hand ball

  152. Andrei looks determined.

  153. andrei is showing that you dont got to be big to be a hard man.

  154. Limestonegunner

    Koscielny is a beast!! Luiz who?

  155. if that was Song hed ben shown red card now, im sure about it.

  156. wow they getting desperate, Owen now?

  157. So there you have it, its clear when the pressure is off we play, when the pressure is on we struggle. As clear as ever that it is purely a mental issue why we cant actually win trophies. hopefully this years experience will iron out our mental blocks or maybe get in a pshycologist.

  158. Limestonegunner

    Tie for a goal on counterattack–ManU throwing everyting forward now. Should be space behind.

  159. well owen knows how to fall atlest.

  160. hehe arsha is whinding up that right back so much 🙂

  161. Limestonegunner

    Arshavin putting in the effort defensively and the quality of the whole team’s play lifts on attack because we get possession back deeper.

    Chesney keeps kicking too deep.

  162. We should be 2 or 3 goals up. Been too wasteful in front of goal

  163. Is this all united have got? So meek. Makes me wonder how they’re top

  164. Limestonegunner

    Yes!!!!!!!!!!!

  165. Borges Spinelli

    Yesssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssss!

  166. How satisfying to hold a 1-0 lead against Manure of all people. Brilliant, boys.

  167. and they cheated as much as they could. but even with cheat they fell short…. you cannot cheat yourself to victory over equal teams. lessons learned united?

  168. we deserved that
    clichy fouled owen for a pen at the end but we deserved that

    huge props to the lads..especially AA…

  169. How nice to beat them cunts, shame the chavs are just as chuffed.

  170. Limestonegunner

    FG, very satisfying. Yes we could have been 2-3 goals up the way we played, but it is very nice to see a close lead held for nearly a whole half.

    We did it without Fabregas and Nasri out for a half. Very impressive. Showed how weak ManU were when they had to chase the game away.

  171. refereeing did even itself out then!!!

  172. Limestonegunner

    JJ, looked to me like it happened just outside the box?

  173. Fuck yesssss…that felt good…

    Ramboooooooooooooooooooooo!!!!

  174. Conférencier

    The team clearly lacked mental strength, a leader would have slapped the forward players and made sure they scored more goals…Wenger OUT!!!

  175. Ramsey ‘s handball could have been a pen aswell

  176. It’s important that we won this, especially since we were without Cesc. So we can get a result against top teams, even without him. He is important, yes, but he is not the team. We can play free-flowing, successful attacking football without him.

  177. victory my friends!!! i would have liked to see a bit more possession at the end there instead of cheszney literally bypassing all the players and kicking it to Van Der Sar.
    How about those Arshavin tackles!! great game and fuck manure’s bus parking tactics it can’t hold us back anymore

  178. Let’s hope they both unravel, dG.

  179. And karma bites united back in the ass. Rambo song and scezcny won the game. Was it a pen? …Dont really care 1- 0 to the Arsenal. Welcome back Aaron.

  180. Yes… Nothing is sweeter than beating the Mancs!

  181. Great win and even though we’re likely out of it, these players needed to get these 3 points. Our back 4 were all warriors today. Chezzer made some really big saves and showed great poise. Not surprising that our goal came when their defense could not set up with 9 in the box and we took a quick shot. Well on, Rambo. I would’ve loved to have seen us get a second goal or even just hold on to the ball a little better during the last 10 minutes, but that’s splitting hairs. Everyone put forth tremendous effort today and I think everyone fed off the tireless efforts of the captain, RvP.

  182. @ Evil
    Agreed. Ramsey scoring, doing it without Cesc, winning 1-0, beating Manure for the first time in what seems like eons…it was a huge win.

    @ Jon Jon
    If it was outside the area, it was outside the area.

  183. Arshavin threw himself about and made more tackles in the second half than he has also season. Great win, but it has to be asked where that fight and resolve was for the last month of the season.

  184. A well deserved win.. I feel we could have put the game to bed in the 2nd half…We did not get penalty awarded to us in forst half and clichy’s challenge on owen was a penalty..it evens itself out…..Vidic is a serial dirty b@@@ta@d..I do ont how he gets away with it week in week out..there is no pint on pontificating on what if this n what if that,we are where n have to push on next season..

  185. *all season

  186. it was close limestone
    but i think it was in…
    rambos handball was outside

    but fuck it who cares they got away with one in the first half..fuck them and the gormless ref we won…

  187. If chelsea beat united in next match its a good chance they winn the league. If Barca gets to the CL final its a good chance they will that final.And guess wha? that means united has won EXAXTLY NOTHING this year. Yep you read right. Unless they winnCL final or PL they are goin on a trophyless year. So much for “the great united team”

  188. As for the reffing, had Vidic not gotten away with that handball in the first half, the refs probably would’ve given Owen that penalty. The Ramsey handball occurred outside the box (he touched it before it entered).

  189. Limestonegunner

    Who has ManU really defeated in the CL besides Chelsea? Who have they beaten away?

    We should have had this league in hand and been celebrating the title all but won this afternoon in front of our home fans with Ramsey’s goal, symbolizing our determination in this tough, physical league and our future dominance.

  190. @ Evil and LG
    That last comment of mine was to LG as well.

  191. oh what could have been….

  192. The Vidic handball was a red card offense as well…Clichy’s foul on Owen was much harder to spot in that pack of players, and much more innocous given the situation Utd. were in during that passage of play. The Vidic handball prevented a certain goal.

  193. It was clearly a case of men vs boys to coin a phrase.The look on the united fans…Priceless.

  194. Video tech now! The pre-emptive effect would actually speed things up. And we would’ve won with a comfortable margin. Both game and league.

    Of course, according to Tom, this win doesn’t mean anything. Doesn’t feel like that though.

    Come on you Gunners, Come on 2012.

  195. Arshavin played like he wanted his spot in the first eleven back…it was quite refreshing to see.

  196. “@ Jon Jon
    If it was outside the area, it was outside the area.”
    and this was directed at DukeGoonem.

  197. goonzablazin

    Chris Foy now 1 ManU loss in 19 matches. The Streak is dead.

  198. Happy St Totteringhams Day fellow Gooners 🙂

  199. Ramsey and Wilshere in the middle are quite a pair. They both run their socks off and are combative for players of their size.

  200. No one could accuse those two of not having the desire needed to be winners.

  201. Limestonegunner

    This was important also to give us some cushion ahead of ManCity to hold 3rd and guarantee group stages in the CL.

    If Ramsey hadn’t been injured, you can be sure we would have had more goals from midfield. He played very well defensively (as well as Jack) and has goals to his game. I am so happy to see him playing successfully on the pitch. He should start at Stoke. I expect him to score a brace at the Brittania by nutmegging Shawcross on one and shooting past him from distance on another.

  202. arse or brain

    just one more point until st toterings day always worth celerbrating even if it does come very late this season : great win especially as there was another biased ref fergies gonna want his money back : youngest side in the premier this season beats unpaidfor utd take heed doomers and spuds blog le groan

  203. That sealed St. Totteringham’s day! Lol, came a little later than usual the past few seasons.

  204. Very true, Viceologist

    @ DeiseGooner
    ha ha! thanks, same to you!

  205. The best part about the game is that we held on to the 1 nil win against the so called big club. The test of mental strength was passed and we need to continue with this form and finish on a high.

    The fact that Fabregas didn’t play was a major plus.

    Laurent Koscielny is a monster. I don’t want to see him out of the team when Vermaelen is back. I hope Wenger considers him even as cover for Alex Song if Song is injured or suspended (or at the Africa Cup of Nations). But Koscielny is the dogs chuffers.

  206. Get the fuck in! A welcome shot in the arm for the lads, and probably a monkey off thier backs too… Fuck the spuds, fuck the chavs, nothing is sweeter than beating the dirty, cheating, whinging mancs…

  207. george rodger

    Ok ,Just how good was Arshavin.
    I cant say how much better that has made me feel .
    And Rambo can do it in the play-maker role
    woo fucking hoooo

  208. Well I just knew we would win!
    We are simply so much better when the pressure is off, although one could still see some of those age old ‘problems’. We got a bit jittery towards the end and more importantly we where wasteful in attack. We had up to four counterattack opportunities yet I don’t recall many shots on target?

    This United team do NOT deserve to be champions. It boggles the mind that they may yet win the league and get to the CL final.

  209. george rodger

    And if I here anyone saying that its because there was nothing at stake ,there will much visualising of peoples mouths being punched,hard.

  210. A few minor tweaks to this side and we are looking at a promising 11/12 season…I am curious to see how it all plays out this summer.

  211. Limestonegunner

    Let’s win the next three and build up the goal difference, starting with an emphatic victory at Stoke next weekend. Then we see what happens and hopefully it stays interesting. Even so we will need to think about what has happened this season and hope for improvements for the next.

    Koscielny was terrific, but Song would have passed it off or taken a shot on one of those two or three runs forward. We still could use cover/competition for Song. We both know that whether he starts ahead of Vermaelen or backs him up, he’ll get plenty of games. Our CB’s are always going to have injuries in such a physical league. Djourou is out again–hopefully he is going to be fine.

  212. That feels much better. We needed something to celebrate. Winning the last 3 games would really put us on track for a strong start next season.

  213. the midfield seemed very fluent with lots of neat little one touch passes. i am saying we sell cesc to cuntalona and let ramsey/wilshere/song reign supreme. i am also a terrible manager so you don’t have to call me out for it. The midfield did well against the parked bus of ManIOU and also did well tracking back on the inevitable opposition hoof up the park.
    I think that we don’t even really have a formation when playing with the lineup we used today. Players get to where they need to be. Nasri dropped back a few times to play orchestrator and set up the offense. RVP is one of the best passers i know and his touch is immaculate and irreplacable up front. love this team and how they play. thanks arsenal

  214. All the way with AW!

  215. This result left us ruing what might have been…

  216. There will never be a time when any team could not do with one or two additions.

  217. Looks like West Ham are sure bets for going down…15 minutes in and 2-0 down to the blue mancs…

  218. well thats certainly some pride restored…
    that was a good battle and we deserved it..

    if only eh…

  219. “Arshavin threw himself about and made more tackles in the second half than he has also season. Great win, but it has to be asked where that fight and resolve was for the last month of the season.”

    That team discussion must have worked – I just hope he keeps it up next season if he’s still here.

    Winning is a good confidence boost, just a shame it’s probably too late to mean more. Keep it up boys!

  220. Cesc has split up with Marta?

  221. arse or brain

    im running out of texts contacting all the plastic mancs i know what a great day, ramsey wiltshire midfield awesome

  222. george rodger

    Lets not be sending Cesc. on his way to quickly.
    Cesc. is the best player in the league,lest we forget.

  223. Ramsey did very well, although I have to say united’s midfield was poor and lacked their usual energy.

    Given how little game time Denilson got this season, I’m not sure it would be reasonable for him remain next season seeing this Ramsey’s performance. And the competition for midfield places could get even fiercer (a very good thing) with Frimpong and Lansbury no doubt eyeing their chances.

  224. Ramsey ‘s revenge!

  225. It looks like the injury to Ramsey may have been a strange blessing to the development of our midfield. Surely Wishere would not be where he is today had Ramsey been fully fit. Now they will both be ready for great things in the future. Weird how things work out sometimes…At least that is the positive spin I have to attribute to it.

  226. Why do so many people think Arshavin may leave?

  227. We played almost the perfect game against united today…the difference to the previous games being our play without the ball..made the same point at half-time…This had shades of the united-barca final where they were outplayed by barca…

    Ramsey shows what we have missed from him the last year thanks to that stupid fuck shawcross..great performance..MOTM for me..Song, kos and Jack were immense too..RVP lead the side brilliantly…if cesc to barca does happen not so worried now…

  228. Happy yet very frustrated today. We won and looked strong all round the pitch, if only this was a few weeks earlier.

    I know everyone likes to make out that Arsenal are bloody awful and are under achieving that is the narrative and I do not expect that to change but it just shows that we are not actually that far away.

    A few squad improvements and offensive and defensive tweaking and this group of players plus a few more could win the league.

    We should be top today. We are better than the teams we drew against in recent weeks and that saddens me.

    Very proud of the boys today.

  229. I can’t think of anyone who can replace his goals and assists, and wouldn’t cost way more than he did…

  230. We need the same attitude for the next 3 games though. I know we wont win the league but we need to finish on a high and with some pride and feel good results. Battle Stoke next up! Hope our injuries from today clear up too

  231. Limestonegunner

    Vice, no dice with me–the only blessing is he is back and playing well again. Wilshere would still be coming through, but we would have had many more goals from midfield–you could expect 6-8 goals from Ramsey this season had he been fit and continued to progress as he had been. This is a key area where we were lacking this season since Cesc hasn’t had so many goals. He likes to shoot and isn’t so inhibited around the box.

  232. Borges Spinelli

    I’m pleased Wenger adjudged Ramsey to be deserving of a start in place of the enigmatic Fàbregas. He has vindicated the Manager’s faith in him, with a sterling performance and the winning goal.

  233. Limestone,

    I am just trying to look at it in a different light. Otherwise, it is just really depressing to think how much further along he would be without that setback to his career.

  234. By the way, is it St. Totteringham day yet?

  235. Anirudh, it is only one game so we shouldn’t get carried away.

    Henristic, I don’t think he’s leaving, but he might.

  236. Theoretically: no.
    Practically: If Tottenham can somehow make up a difference of almost 30 goals, then they can overtake us. You can yourself imagine how probable that is.

  237. happy st totts day people 😉

  238. Think not of what might have been but of what will come. COYG!

  239. Cichy constantly alternated between awesome and poor. He made some solid interceptions, but he so easily boxes himself into a corner and then gives the ball away. Too many times he did that when he should be looking to release the ball quicker. One rarely sees Sagna doing that..

  240. *Clichy of course

  241. Is Cesc Fabregas really the best player in the league? IMO it’s van Persie

  242. Limestonegunner

    A player like Ramsey is exactly what ManU is missing-a creative attacker in midfield, a Scholes replacement. If ManU lose this title, (please, please), this will stick in Fergie’s craw!

  243. Gainsbourg69

    We won by the thinest of margins just like they’ve beat us by the thinnest of margins the last handful of times we’ve played them. However, the morons who decry a huge drop in our level when United beats us don’t give a shit about stuff like that. Today we figured them out and threw their own tactics back in their faces.

    Koscielny is turning into one of the best centre backs in the world right before the realists’ eyes. Instead of overlooking him and praising sideshow Bob, they should be paying attention to how well he plays against the likes of Messi, Rooney and Drogba. Djourou has also been a major, major revelation this season. They have been our best central defensive partnership in ages. The best part is that they’re 23 and 24 years old.

    Ramsey looks like a beast. Recently I was reminded how much of an impact he can have in a game when he played in the Wales vs England qualifier. The minute the Welsh put in a creative midfielder Ramsey was freed and brought Wales back into the game by himself. Today he was well up for it and looked like his leg break didn’t undermine his progress at all. It sort of reminded me of seeing Jack go off on loan and come back with a huge jump in progress.

  244. Today could be a template for next season, the team was up for it. Anyone talking about Arshavin being mentally out should have eaten a massive slice of humble pie. May be, just may be, we would be better off without Cesc Fabregas transmitting the feeling that Arsenal should win something for him rather than the other way round.

  245. Passenal,
    Why him more than anyone else, say Nasri for example. No reason why we should let him go except for his age, but surely we don’t have that rule anymore? Silvestre got a 2 years deal right?

  246. Passenal..im not saying he is or should..all im saying is with the current options (Nasri/Arshavin/Ramsey/RVP) as replacements in that position and Ramsey set for a full pre-season its not as dreaded a move as it was at the start of this season (nasri-still not certain/RVP too injured/ramsey-injured)..
    so no the opinion is not based on ramsey or this game alone

    Just that I reasoned that this would be a good time to make this point on the back of ramseys performance and beating united 😀

  247. The Arsenal team that took the pitch today is the youngest team to be played in the Premiership for the last 2 years. Most definitely men against boys.

    What was interesting for me is that when United tried the diagonals or the balls in the box, I was fairly confident in Szesney, Djourou and Koscielny. We literally gobbled up everything.
    There was a counter attack when it was 3 against 2 and Rooney picked Nani who was escorted slightly out of his stride, but he hit a sublime goal-bound shot non-the-less. It was almost like Szczesny was telling his defenders, “do what you can lads, and I’ll take it from here”. That was a brilliant save.

    I’m really excited about Fabianski and Szczesny fighting it out for the No. 1 jersey for years to come – and it won’t hurt if Lehmann continues as the ‘old head’ to guide the two of them as he completes his badges.

  248. Limestonegunner

    Vice, I understand, but we are playing Stoke next. Perhaps I’ll be more in a mood to see a silver lining for Ramsey’s injury if he scores a brace at the Brittania and we crush them.

  249. i feel bitter saying it but the chav fans have been quiet this year the fucking mancs have done my head in with this 19th title bollox and everyone else is shit…
    if we dont take it i want chelsea to and i hope barca fuck them in the final of cl as well so i can spend all summer call them bottle jobs and chokers…

    if had to put up with there shit for the passed two months so bollox to em, i hope they lose the lot..

  250. The only transfer we need is a replacement for Pat Rice, if and when he goes. Wouldn’t mind Eden Hazard though, for the right price.

  251. I really hope Arshavin doesn’t leave. Especially if he can consistently play next season the way he did today.

  252. Last of The Country Gentlemen

    Just want to say…high fives all round

  253. Hey Mean Lean
    What’s up with the blog?
    You get red carded? 🙂
    dkg

  254. Hmm, Eden Hazard to replace Pat Rice.
    Interesting suggestion.

  255. Henristic | May 1, 2011 at 4:46 pm |

    Because we were talking about him at the time.

  256. Me too Jonjon… Lesser of 2 evils innit? Happy St. Totts day all 🙂

  257. Many of us with thoughts going to next season already.
    One thing is for sure, there’s going to be a lot of very funny rumours about who we’re about to buy.
    I wonder how long it will take for the “Joe Cole to Arsenal” rumour to start.
    Or have I just started it? 🙂

  258. “A player like Ramsey is exactly what ManU is missing-a creative attacker in midfield, a Scholes replacement. If ManU lose this title, (please, please), this will stick in Fergie’s craw!”

    The irony is delicious Limestone!

  259. I know I’m in a minority, but I really don’t see that our problems lie in the playing personnel per se. Except for B teamers like Denilson, Rosicky, and Diaby (for injuries reasons) I don’t think our 1st team needs any ‘tweaking’
    (Actually, it would be nice to have quicker, more goal hungry/direct strikers to replace either of Bendtner or Chamakh)

    We have the technical quality to win stuff so why do we need tweaking again? I’m not sure any signing can overcome our deficiencies or give us the sort of qualities we lack (save for the very, very best players). Those qualities have to come from the coaching staff.
    If we played more games with intelligence/guile, the right amount of aggression, and discipline, we will win trophies imo.

  260. Passenal,
    Fair enough. The thing is I’ve been reading about him possibly leaving so many times on this blog, and sometimes it feels like some don’t even mind him leaving? It makes me wonder why given how productive he is.

  261. rooney got his 5th yellow

    suspended for chelsea??

  262. arse or brain

    unfortunatly 5th yellow nothing at this stage of the season

  263. Matoo | May 1, 2011 at 4:44 pm |

    Is Cesc Fabregas really the best player in the league? IMO it’s van Persie

    I thought Bale was the best player in the league? Strike that, bestest in the WORLD!

  264. JJ @ 5:08:

    Wow. that would be amazing.

    Henristic 5:04:

    Today not the day as we will debate for several months but no such thing as a squad that could not do with some tweaking and some additions who will compete for spots in the top 11. At the very least competition might bring out the best in everyone involved not to mention reliable depth and more rotation.

  265. I miss the likes of Naga gunner & AIC today..

  266. Tennessee Arsenal

    I’ll take credit for this victory.

    For the second time this year SE Tennessee has been hit by tornadoes. Three waves came through on Wednesday. Power came back on in my neighborhood last night, but not at my house, because a tree fell in my yard, tearing the power connection off the side of my house. There’s no telling when crews will get to it.

    And so, with me unable to watch the match, the boys pull off one of their three great victories of the season.

    Even though I couldn’t see it, it is a highlight in an otherwise lousy week.

  267. Two big hurdles cleared today. Not only did we beat United but we managed to do it without the captain.

    Very encouraging for the rest of the lads.

  268. Country gentleman, high five to you too!

  269. One Aaron Ramsey, there’s only one Aaron Ramsey!!! Brilliant stuff, my only criticism (well, there are 2!) we get at least one more goal and Theo was taken off yet again.

    The ref (continuing from last night) was an anti-homer, if such a thing exists!

  270. me i never give up till mathematically over. thats 2 matches away especially if man u lose again next weekend!

    it will be too sweet for us to win this league on goal difference especially if man u and Chelsea draw their next 3 games and we win ours. At least that should take us back to second. so the result today was useful!

  271. Apparantly Sky had a graphic on before the game, entitled Red Hot Rooney. It had his stats since January; ( goals and 5 assists. He was in THIRD place, behind Dirk Kuyt and…. Robin Van Persie, on 15 goals and 3 assists!!!

    WTF is that about??? Un-fucking-believable, the bias towards England players, even low class scum like that cunt.

  272. george rodger

    The youngest team for 2 years?
    The one years ago was us as well ,by the way.
    All we need is a 50 goals a year striker.Usain Bolt on the wing and The Jolly Green Giant in defence,and bob is your uncle.

  273. george rodger

    Dexter ,I saw that .It was embarrassing when Jamie Rednap mentioned RVP as an after thought.

  274. Tennessee Arsenal | May 1, 2011 at 5:19 pm |

    sorry to hear about your misfortune, but I’m glad that you are okay and Arsenal have given us all something to be cheerful about today.

  275. Apparantly the Jolly Green Giant is agitating for a move away from Sweetcorn Rovers and might be tempted to move George… Not sure about my uncle Bob though?

  276. Where are the letters to Wenger today?

  277. hello all. so satisfying to win today.

    thought song was massive in blunting united’s counter attacks. both with tackles and positionally. 9 tackles according to the guardian all in our defensive half.

    Regardless of how the past 4 weeks have played out, the team can be proud that they’ve mad things as difficult as possible for United at this stage. Hopefully we will win out in the league, just so the boys can prove it to themselves.

  278. lol dkgooner, but no. that place is reserved for eboue.

  279. Tennessee Arsenal,

    Glad to hear that you’re well. Best to you and your family. Nice to know the Arsenal is there in good times and bad.

  280. When United started the 2nd half attacking, they lost. They should have stuck to what they do best “defending”, although I feel would’ve still beaten them today.

    Very happy for Ramsey, Wilshere, Wojciech, and of course Captain Arsenal….. RVP.

  281. Tennessee Arsenal

    Thanks Ya’ll, It really was nice to hear about the win and to be in touch with some fellow fans. I’ll be leaving my business now, having bathed, eaten and checked the score, so I’ll sign off until later and head back to electricitylessness.

  282. george rodger

    Would anyone swap Wojciech for Hart now?
    Not a chance,me thinks

  283. Not heard any news about those stupid protests some idiots were planning. Anyone knows when it is/was supposed to happen?

  284. We have conceded 1 goal from our last 6 league games at home…a horribly soft penalty.. which means we havent conceded from open play in the last 6 home league games or nearly 600 minutes of football as sky would say..

    The last goal from open play at home was that “miles offside” goal Saha scored on the 1st of Feb and before that..would u believe it, against chelsea on the 27th of december LAST YEAR..so we havent conceded a proper legit goal from open play at home in the league this year..

    Is it just me or is our defence actually not all that bad..

    Cahill Really??? Kos has been one of the best defenders in the league for me..

  285. @ Tennessee
    And here am I tsk-ing because the wind is rattling the branches against my bathroom window!

    mj_gunner | May 1, 2011 at 5:16 pm |

    ha ha!

    @ Henristic
    I agree some of that – certainly with the central point that we have the quality as we are right now. You can always improve a team – I said earlier on that there is not and never has been a team in the world which cannot be improved – but you are quite right that we do not have to be improved in order to be good enough to win the league. (This is the distinction that a lot of people cannot understand.) I think that purely in terms of quality we have the best squad. Some of our performances have to improve.
    Where I disagree is in putting it down to mental weakness. I think there are many causes – immaturity or inexperience in some individuals, bad luck, poor officiating, bias – all spring to mind. I feel that we have not had a level playing field and that we are actually under more pressure than our rivals. I don’t disagree that we have made many avoidable mistakes, but I can’t ascribe those mistakes to that one cause. The way I see it, if the squad that simply cannot stand up to pressure, then how do explain performances like Barca at home (and away), Chelsea at home, Man City away? If we were that sort of squad wouldn’t we be like that all the time? I also look at all the international captains we have in our ranks and find it hard to believe that we are lacking mental toughness.
    Anyway, I am hoping that this is a final spasm in a “growth spurt”.

  286. This just shows people make up their minds even before watching a single game..

    Kos who??never hear of him, cant be “world class” can he? One of Wengers bargain buys..

    This is the kind of nonsense which really gets on my nerves..

  287. Before the last home game of the season against Villa Henristic. I’m just sorry I can’t be there to show my support of the team and opposition to their nonsense – real life gets in the way sometimes!

  288. “I am hoping that this is a final spasm in a “growth spurt”.

    Me too FG. You make some good points about where things have gone wrong. It’s never as simple as the simple-minded claim. There are multiple factors involved. I saw a headline on Newsnow wherein G Neville was claiming that Arsenal are ‘too emotional’. Sadly, I think there might be some truth in that. I think the Newcastle game was the start of the problems and it was about how the team reacted to blatant referee bias. It is linked to a certain level of immaturity and inexperience to allow ourselves to be rattled by it rather than re-double our efforts. No one is going to give us anything, we have to scrap like lions, fight against the injustice and not feel sorry for ourselves. (Same goes for the supporters!) This season has been a hard lesson in many ways, but hopefully it will be graduation time next season.

  289. Yeah Anirudh those are none too shabby stats. Now if we could only drill the defense a bit better when defending set pieces and maybe cut out about 10 league goals in the against column wed be a whole lot closer to the title….

  290. Tennesse Arsenal… Sorry about that… glad u are okay though and the boys helped to cheer you up!

  291. that’s what I am talking about! :mrgreen:

  292. @ Passenal
    I agree about Newcastle being the turning point, although we did have some excellent performances after that. The first half was sublime – it was like a dream – everythign we tried came off. I can imagine that Wenger was thinking to himself, this is what I see in training every day. They looked like they had stepped into another category, not jst another gear.

  293. well well well…clickclickclick

  294. Frank,

    see what you can achieve by some effort?

    and the fans reacting to being served caviar?

  295. Immense performance from the captain today, just immense. Same age now as DB10 when he arrived. What a fucking player.

  296. Fuck off, Suga3, you cunt

  297. george rodger

    I think he is a bit older than Dennis was ,12 months perhaps,but I have thought the very same thing Frank.
    The difference between this team and other “winning” Arsenal teams is we don’t have a Dennis Bergkamp(it gives me goosebumps yust thinking about the great man)……..or do we?

  298. meh…

    I like to celebrate a good win too, but even that does not stop you from being a twerp…

    what a classy creature you are, I will pay no further attention to you – peace dude and chillax or you will burst a vessel 😆

  299. What a fantastic performance, especially by the midfield trio. So this is our champions, who even at home park the bus when we come along.

    We had such a wonderful chance to win the league with ease and blew it, with some help from the refs.

    The spirit in today’s perfomance was amazing and bodes well for the fututre if they can reproduce it on a regular basis.

    By the way, the so called “penalty” was no where near one. If you look at it again, you will see that owen was on his way down well before Clichy touched him. It was dive reminiscent of Rooney’s many ones against us. Rather like the “penalty” against Liverpool, it is clear that the player tackled was on his way down before he was touched.

    Well done boys.

    By the way, did I hear AW say that there have been 17 penalties against us?

  300. Owen was actually offside before he was caught by Clichy (not enough contact to make him fall the way he did though)

  301. Dennis was just under a year younger. But then we have already had many stunning contributions from RvP. So many great seasons to come. As captain I hope. Clickclickclick

  302. A bitter (probably drunk) Manc piped up at AW’s press conference, about half way through. This is what I think he said

    “At United and Liverpool you’d be facing the sack – any plans for next season”

    “There’s a vacancy at Orient”

    The PS just ignored the question and, by the sounds of it, had him ushered out. Actually I don’t think AW even understood a word he said, his accent was so strong.

  303. OOU, there was actually a manc supporter from north of watford?

  304. Watford? Dirty northern bastards!

  305. Haha, Passenal. I couldn’t believe it either, but he was definitely Mancunian;. I had to listen four times just to work out what he was going on about!

  306. Had a girlfriend from Hatfield years ago. Couldn’t understand a word she said, not a single word.

  307. Paulie Walnuts

    RVP led from the front today. What a player he is – only underated by some purely because of injuries.

    I thought the boys thoroughly deserved the win. It was like waking up from a nightmare.

    Stand outs were Kos, Song (his best game in 2011) & RVP but special mention to Ramsey , not just for the display but lasting the full 95 on legs like jelly late on. Oh, & I nearly forgot AA , who has clearly been playing out of position since his arrival at the club as he`s obviously a tough tackling full back.

    Just nice to win again & especially against perhaps the best team the world has ever seen.

  308. I agree with Paulie Walnuts

  309. Actually, I didn’t say this –

    FUCKING YESS!!!

  310. One – nil to The Arsenal! This one was a long time coming wasn’t it? At last we get what we deserve against a poor Utd team who have defended and bored their way to the title. The future is ours if we want it, need to keep this group together as long as possible.

  311. george rodger

    I dont think Clichy gave Arshavin enough cover,lazy bastard

  312. Here’s the funny thing about what happened today; ManU played as they always do against us, they sat back and waited for us to attack and hopefully hit us on the break… and we basically got the ball down and passed it around them and created chances. Yet we won and won with the youngest team in the premiership this season. Now according to the on-line experts and the doomer idiots that litter the Arsenal blogosphere… this very tactic of Fergie’s that we just won against is proof of Wenger’s naivety, proof that he isn’t good enough to win a match against SAF ever again, proof that we have inferior tactics! So ask yourself how the hell did we actually win this one and we deserved it?

    The truth is that the margin between winning and losing are so fine that most matches between the top teams can swing on a fleeting moment of inspiration. The second thing to admit is that United have had a much stronger and deeper team than us for at least the last 3 seasons. Our first eleven could always match theirs but not necessarily if we missed Key players but today showed that not be the case any more. Cesc was missing, Vermaelen was missing, Nasri went off after the second half… in season’s gone by or even at the beginning of this season we would have suffered. Today we held our own and outplayed them as we have done on quite a few occasions and lost in the past.

    Folks always resort to the quick and simple explanation because for most people any loss or draw has to be someone’s fault. I bet that if a penalty had been given against Clichy we’d be hearing the usual idiots spouting off about tactical naivety and how useless Clichy and Squillaci and whoever the scapegoat of choice happens to be are as footballers, how they are unfit to wear the Arsenal shirt, blah de blah.

    We won today and we deserved to win but we also deserved to win against Liverpool, against Sunderland… even against Bolton. The football we played was good enough to win us those games but we were unlucky in most instances. Chelsea won yesterday with 2 goals that shouldn’t have been and people talk about their resilience… how is it resilience to have phantom goals awarded in your favour? And how is it bottling to have stonewall penalties not awarded and non-penalties awarded against a team?

    The point here is that it really is time for a bit more thought from Arsenal bloggers and fans. Yes the team should have done better but it is not making excuses to point out that we haven’t had a whole load of luck in this run-in.

    This was a great win… given the circumstances and the morale at the club after the last 3 games, this win is huge… not just for this season but also for the coming season. We’ve now beaten ManU, ManCity and Chelsea in the same season… that is something we didn’t do last season and that bodes well. This team is growing before our very eyes. Yes, there’s real cause for disappointment in how the season has turned out but please let’s not overlook the progress that has been made.

    PTBAG

  313. In retrospect, it was a good thing that Vidic was not sent off for a blatent handball in a goal scoring opportunity. If he did, then the hacks and punditocracy will insist that like the Man City game away, we played against 10 men so it wasn’t a fair contest.

    Was it only me or did Jamie Redknapp feel like crying in his after game bs. This clearly wasn’t in the script. All the after match feedback seems to be that the Manure didn’t turn up today.

    Nonsense! We made them look bad.

  314. And don’t forget we beat BBB too Joshua!

  315. im not english, what on earth is a “squeeky bum?” Is it the action you prefom to keep a “turtle head” in while you run too the bog??
    Squeeky bum time?

  316. I am English and I have no idea what you are talking about, Poodle.

  317. Great performance today, albeit a little bittersweet thinking about what might of been!

    Utd play the way they always do against us, the difference this time being that we took our chance and were pretty solid at the back.

    Koscielny was class, great performance by Clichy too, in fact you couldn’t pick out anyone who didn’t play well.

    And Ramsey and jack! Who needs Cesc! 😉

  318. Darius, I noted the headlines about ‘lacklustre’ manure. We can never just be given credit for a job well done. Didn’t they have the golden boy Rooney out there as well as top PL scorer Berbatov and diving supremo Owen? If they couldn’t muster a goal between them, maybe that is down to a good defensive performance by the foreign nancy boys n’est pas?

  319. george rodger

    Joshua,It make me laugh when people say teams sit back and give us the ball,whilst waiting to pick us off on the break.
    They play that way because the cant get the fucking ball off us.We have more possession because we have technically better players than them.All we need is for our players to accept that they are better and we are off and running.
    The Media puts undue pressure on our team.Ok ,maybe we don’t deal with the pressure as well as we could.But if they kept telling us how great we were,instead of how frail,we might cope better.
    Anyway ,lets see how they try to write off this result and ignore that we have beaten City,Man.U. and Chelsea this year.Not just beat them but totally out play them.

  320. Paulie Walnuts

    Poodle,

    `Squeeky Bum Time` was coined by S`Ralex a while back – around the time he got caught hurtling up the hard shoulder of the M6 I seem to recall.

  321. squeeky bum time frank, why its called that?

  322. george rodger

    Matt,and team in the world needs Cesc.

  323. george rodger

    and =any

  324. george, I suspect Matt’s tongue was firmly in his cheek!

    Cesc is an exceptional player and has shown his quality on a consistent basis. Perhaps him not being on the pitch took utd by surprise as we would have played differently without Cesc in the team and they were not prepared for it.

  325. Wayne Rooney will be that fellow who spent the whole game advising the referee. Every decision analysed in detail loudly in very basic English. What a servant to the game. Probably get knighted I shouldn’t wonder. Be a surprise if he didn’t.

  326. george rodger

    Yes.Sorry Matt,jumped the gun a bit.

  327. Paulie Walnuts

    Well as Ramsey played, talk of him replacing Cesc is premature. I don`t see why they can`t both play in the same side either. You can`t have too many class players.

    A point on Vidic – he`s one dirty fecker, that man. He actually threw himself into JW on the edge of their box on one occasion (no free kick given, obviously) & hardly ever makes a clean challenge. It seems he gets by on reputation & the fact he plays for Man Ure.

  328. ..apparently Wayne works with the elderly in his spare time. Exemplary behaviour.

  329. arse or brain

    actually rooney was the one who was booked for pushing jack over after hed been skinned like a chicken and then wasnt sent off when he kicked the ball at jacks head

  330. george rodger

    We should be careful not to go over the top with one good result.Otherwise we are as stupid as the doomers who go O.T.T. with a bad result.
    But it must be better to be optimistic and happy rather than pessimistic and a miserable moaning cunt like AIC or Jimbo.No?

  331. george rodger

    Paulie,Vidic is just a cheating cunt like Rooney.No more no less.

  332. If you can’t go ‘over the top’ when you shove it up the Mancs then something is missing. N’est-ce pas? Mange tout? De neuve?

  333. arse or brain

    yeah we need to go over the top weve just beating the mancs without cesc, tv , diaby etc and with nasri and johan going off injured and utd bias ref who made more interceptions and tackles than all manures midfield put together the doomers must hate it but this was a big win

  334. george rodger

    Frank are you related to Del.boy Trotter?

  335. Question is why couldn’t we have done this vs blackburn and Sunderland….How we havn’t won this fukin league with these players i dont know.

  336. Frank you forgot to mention la plume de ma tante as well!

  337. george rodger

    Duke,ask AIC he will tell you why.

  338. Duke, because ‘shit happens’!

  339. manu tried the rope a dope…
    only this time not only did we run rings round them, song stayed back and helped koz and they totally marked rooney out of the game.. utd had no outlet…
    arshavin also gave clichy the most dazzling display of defensive cover ive ever seen in the second half
    we didnt give utd a sniff

    simple fact is we wanted it more..

    we can all take pride in that performance..but its only phase 1..we need to take momentum of this into stoke, villa and fulham and finish off in style..

    theres no point pulling utds pants down and showing fergies little willy to the world if we revert back to being flat for the last 3 fixtures..and you never know if chelsea beat utd next week there could be 3 points between us and the two leaders with 2 games to go….there could be a twist yet…

    chelsea may well still win it…but utd have to face blackburn and blackpool who are fighting for survival..it wont be easy for them and if we win our last 3 games we might not win the league but we could push utd into third which will be fucking hilarious and i would piss my pants..

  340. @ George… its just a relief to get the result our performance deserves for a change instead of usually playing well against united and losing!

    This league may yet be settled on Goal diff me thinks!

  341. george rodger

    team spirit,I will drink to that mate

  342. rip sir henry cooper

  343. not a likely mate LOL

  344. FunGunner | May 1, 2011 at 6:28 pm |


    @ Henristic
    “Where I disagree is in putting it down to mental weakness. I think there are many causes – immaturity or inexperience in some individuals, bad luck, poor officiating, bias – all spring to mind. I feel that we have not had a level playing field and that we are actually under more pressure than our rivals. I don’t disagree that we have made many avoidable mistakes, but I can’t ascribe those mistakes to that one cause..

    The way you’ve used the term ‘mental weakness’ makes our problem seem so, so fatal.
    I don’t see it that way at all. You may notice that I never really used the phrase in my post you responded to. Sure, I agree our problems are partly psychological , and acknowledge it may be due to any number of reasons, including immaturity as you mentioned (although we’ve also seen our experienced players make costly errors and show lack of guile/discipline).
    But for the most part I think our issues can be solved during training.
    I’ve seen the quality of football that these guys are able to deliver and the fact that they are unable to do so as consistently as their title winning peers in the games that matter most, makes it more of a discipline/training problem for me, especially considering how young they are.
    I certainly don’t think that the players themselves are ‘mentally weak’ or ‘bottlers’, or that it even matters much if they are. Time and time again, in sport and in life in general, I’ve seen that the so called ‘winning mentality’ can be learned. Not everyone is born with it, but the best coaches/leaders are able to inspire it in people.

    The way I see it, if the squad that simply cannot stand up to pressure, then how do explain performances like Barca at home (and away), Chelsea at home, Man City away? If we were that sort of squad wouldn’t we be like that all the time? I also look at all the international captains we have in our ranks and find it hard to believe that we are lacking mental toughness.

    Are you saying we’ve got no problems playing under pressure? I make even Arsene will disagree with you there…
    Being able to beat big teams is great, but how much does that really mean by itself? That on our day we can beat the best? Few will disagree with that anyways. I admit we had a bit of that problem last season, but we have always been able to take a big scalp every now and then. The main problem has always been that we don’t get those sort of performances as often as is necessary to be able to win things.

  345. TS,
    Omo, how bodi na?

  346. Well done lads. You did Wenger, us and importantly yourselves proud.
    We have always been the better team and I think today a mental block was well and truly dealt with and dealt with in style.

    Cesc, took note and now realises that in Aaron Ramsey, The Arsenal will carry on. Was gutted when I saw what happened to Ramsey, at a time when he was starting to show he’s more than capable. Showed it today.

    Finishing strong and showing that Wenger was right along. Two additions during the close season and we will be seeing something very special next season.

  347. Great result today and a really encouraging performance. Gives us back some pride.
    Vermaelen will definitely be first choice next season. At centre back. Alongside Djourou.

  348. @ Henristic
    i dey kampe according to baba iyabo o

  349. New kit revealed. Looks good but I’m not a fan of the red socks!

  350. Been so brokenhearted that I couldn’t post…well done to the team for restoring some pride and some of their confidence.

    Arsenal.

  351. for me, our cb pairing for next season should be vermaelen and koscielny. djourou has a tendency to dwell on the ball too much.

  352. Keep looking forward….

    Great, gutsy performance from the whole team.

    It’s premature, but this is going to be a fascinating off-season. With Vermaelen (probably) back and Ramsey returning to his pre-injury form, the squad really doesn’t need too much overhauling. Major question marks over the future of Cesc, Gael and Samir, but the only two I see leaving are Denilson (step forward Frimpong), Rosicky and Bendtner, largely because they all seem to have lost the manager’s confidence.

    Assuming we keep hold of the players we want to keep, the squad looks robust.

    Goalkeeper: Szczesny is now our nailed-on, going nowhere #1. Fabianski is a great back-up option and people easily forget how good he was earlier this season regardless of a couple of well-publicized errors. I would prefer to see a more experienced presence at #3 instead of Mannone, but we should also have Jens in the coaching staff to help him if he is brought back from Hull.

    Defence: Arsene will look around and know that Eboue is about as good as he will get to back up Sagna and offer a more defensive option late in games as we saw today. No need to change the Clichy-Gibbs order on the left-hand side. Squillaci will be another year older, and should be a #5 option with a Premier League tested CB coming in to the main rotation alongside JD, Koz and Vermaelen.

    Midfield: We will likely keep the same formation, so in comes Frimpong for Denilson, unless this is where Arsene decides to bring in more experience to satisfy Cesc and Samir. Otherwise, it leaves us with Song, Frimpong, Diaby, Ramsey, Fab and Wilshire for the 3 more central midfield spots with Nasri an option also.

    Forwards: RVP and Chamakh in the central role. Arsene knows that we basically ran Chamakh into the ground in the first part of the season, and he never really recovered. If he can get his confidence back, he’ll be just fine.
    Walcott has looked increasingly dangerous drifting towards the middle, and with Arshavin and Nasri as options on either flank, it looks like we could do with one more player out wide.

    In summary, it’s probably fair to expect 3 out (Denilson, Rosicky and Bendtner) and 2-3 in (CB and/or DM) and one more attacking wide option, particularly as the Bendtner experiment out wide has clearly failed.

    As for the loanees, the most probable additions for next season would be Vela and Lansbury, but I have a feeling it might not be either, and Carlos could end up in Spain. Afobe and Miyaichi are promising for the future, but next season will come too soon.

    Still, much will depend on what firepower our rivals acquire and most important will be how the Cesc situation develops. Even so, today’s performance was hugely encouraging if it hints what a Cescless future might look like.

  353. RAMSEY FOR CAPTAIN?

    On another note, have we given up on the title already? If the Chavs beat those damned Devils and we get a good result against Stoke we would just be 3 points behind with the title race still very much open, even with only 2 games left. Of course if we’ve given up on the title then the best result would be a Chelski defeat which gives us a chance to leapfrog them into second.

    The million dollar question is: WHY SETTLE FOR LESS?

  354. Mongolian Gooner

    It’s a good time to be a gooner. I am grinning all day and everybody who know my allegience understand why.

    One nil to the Arsenal.

  355. Limestonegunner

    Re-watching the game and I have to complain again about Stewart Robson. He used to confine his negative remarks to podcasts and commentating on other channels, but recently since our results have dipped he he seems to feel free to put the boot in on ATVO. Just one of many possible examples: He claimed that the ref had to be 100% to give the handball as a penalty and that it was easy to miss. Then he went on to suggest that Arsenal would get all the calls in the second half when the ref realized he missed the call. Finally, he had a go at RvP for running over to the linesman to protest. I am sick of hearing his anti-Arsenal bias (self-hater?, pretending to be “objective” so he can get more gigs, or just joining the negative chorus?) What really galls me is that the club is paying him, probably from my ATVO subscription, to deride the club.

  356. Thank you arsenal for that win.

  357. You were a real star, Henry.

  358. Sacre bleu! It appears that Henry was an Arsenal fan. Well knock me down with a plume de ma tante!

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