Arsenal At Euro2012: Szczesny Stinker, Ars-havin A Laugh & RvP’s Dad Keeps Mum

Euro2012, Matchday 1

Poland 1 – 1 Greece
Russia 4 – 1 Czech Republic

Being hosts, Poland would have wanted the excellent start that they had. Greece were reeling, Lewandowski took his opportunity clincally. And then the Spanish referee intervened, proving incompetence is not the sole preserve of English officials (although Howard Webb tried hard to reclaim the prize later). Harsh as Papastathopoulos original booking was, his second was beyond laughable. It was beyond comprehension.

And then Szczesny intervened. Culpable for the Greek equaliser, the goalkeeper came and missed the cross; it was woeful, the youngster failed miserably to get anywhere near the ball and Salpingidis buried the chance. Szczesny probably wanted to clear his head following that; he never got the time. Salpingidis nudged the ball past the young Pole and Szczesny tripped him. No arguments, the Spanish referee got the decision spot on. Tyton proved a giant amongst goalkeepers by saving Karagounis’ spot-kick.

The second match of the day offered the chance to view two players who are deemed to be the attacking midfielder of choice in the absence of other options. Except Andrey Arshavin was here and left; Tomas Rosicky is here and his second half of the season performances were excellent. Rosicky was influential for his side in an open match; his passing was exemplary. As always the Czech’s were technically proficient on the ball but defensively, they were woeful with the left back betraying his Aboriginal heritage by going walkabout whilst the memories of Yuri Gagarin were revived as Russia continually exploited space.

Arshavin played well last night but there was such a level of revisionism that it beggared belief. PG called it correctly: where were these ‘fans’ when Arshavin was booed at The Emirates. Were these the same who defended him against the vitriol of his critics?

Blame was apportioned to the manager, shifted from the player’s shoulders. The role he played last night was the same as at Arsenal. Sometimes, just sometimes, you have to look at a player and know that he was in the wrong country. As talented as Arshavin is – and he is exceptionally talented – he lacked the consistency to become a success in the Premier League. In that sense he was hardly a failure but he did not live up to his abilities regularly enough to bridge the gap.

And conveniently, it is another stick with which to beat the club.

Not that one is needed since the circus surrounding Robin van Persie offers more potshots than a coconut shie. Having refused to tell the world the intimate details of the discussions at a meeting that he did not attend, Bob van Persie offered the opinion that his son would not be playing for another English club. Manchester City offloading Samir Nasri after a season (according to L’Equipe) will apparently not satisfy Robin if he could wrench himself from Arsenal. Actually it was rather more simple: he loves Arsenal and could not deal with any such treachery.

Barcelona was crossed off the shopping list because of Messi whilst Real Madrid are just pampered egotists. That sort of leaves a choice of Bayern Munich, an Italian club, PSG or returning to Feyenoord. A shortlist that just became shorter. And from this, we are informed this morning that he will not be signing a new contract. So in other words, we do not know anything new.

van Persie’s focus though is currently on his country’s campaign at Euro2012. Denmark are the sacrificial lambs at the Dutch altar with the chance for Nicklas Bendtner to observe close hand exactly what he will need to be a success in the Bundesliga, Huntelaar teaching the lessons. The Dane can also learn how to resurrect a career from his opposite number, how leaving a big club is not an impediment to finding the right environment in which to thrive.

Meanwhile, the growing German contingent at Arsenal may be on display in the match of the day as they take on Portugal. The quartet has been labelled The Group Of Death. The Dutch and Germans are favourites and I think it will be a major surprise if they do not qualify. Their recent records suggest that the Danes and Portuguese will be tricky but ultimately defeated opponents. It could be tight though and dropped points by either of the big two could be costly.

Denmark qualified ahead of Portugal but those group encounters will count for nought. When the two nations meet, the victors will be the dark horse to progress. Much will depend on Ronaldo; will it be an expansive tournament from theGalactico, benefitting the team or will it be one riven by hubris, wanting to promote personal glory ahead of the team reminiscent of the Champions League final at Wembley?


1. Germany

2. Netherlands

3. Portugal

4. Denmark

Posted on June 9, 2012, in Arsenal, Euro2012, Football, Soccer and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 193 Comments.

  1. David Hirst

  2. Nirmalya Ghosh

    Reblogged this on Sports Corner.

  3. I’ll say it again, its amazing what a difference it is when you dont eat the shit english diet.

  4. “Tyton proved a giant amongst goalkeepers ”

    So much tunble-weed around 🙂

  5. Class is permanent.
    You’ve either got it or you don’t.

    …u either get it or you don’t.

  6. I couldn’t watch both of the matches yesterday on account of me preparing for some of my papers, but I did glance over the comment section last night. And as usual PG was all about Arshavin . Vindicated?? I would say so. 🙂

    Regarding Van Persie, we’ll know when we get to know, I guess.

    Good post YW.

  7. Arshavin was fantastic yesterday I thought and it looks like he enjoys playing for Russia which is something he didn’t at Arsenal. Maybe it was just the wrong club for him but I believe he could have done with more support from Wenger and the fans, he was made a scapegoat far too often in my opinion

  8. Tunble-weed? Shit, so bad that the tumble-weed left town

  9. There’s a few crackers in there today YW.

  10. a bit hasty with the past tense there patto1992…he’s still an Arsenal employee

  11. The Real Stew Black

    Brave decision by Szezzer to gamble all on his replacement saving the penalty but it worked out and saved the point so he is vindicated. Bet he won’t be buying drinks for the defender that took the ball out of his hands for the Greek goal though. Curious people are blaming the wrong Pole for that?

  12. Stew

    Not this time. He didn’t need to come for the cross and was not going toward the ball, instead moving into the path of the ball as it curled away from the goal. If he’d done the former, the defender was out of the equation.

  13. ClockEndRider

    Arshavin looked a star.
    But then losing a stone and playing in a game played at testimonial pace against a second rate team will tend to have that effect…….

  14. I tend to agree with stew on WOJO . I felt he had to come out for the cross and the defender took him out. A good gamble that paid off when the penalty was saved. Least we forget WOJO didn’t get any action at all in first half and this tends to put the player into a inaction mode. The Spanish referee was not a good one at all. Three yellow cards, none warranted. I also felt that Greeks won that game as their go ahead goal wasn’t offside.
    AA AND TOMAS played very well and I was very proud to see them both captaining their countries. Time for AA bashers to stuff their face with some humble pie or something.
    Tend to agree with YW as far as the winner and runner up for this group.
    Today’s games are not to be missed. Who said international games are boring. Not I. up. The. guns!!!!!!

  15. I couldn’t care how our players perform on international duty. I’d rather have them commit all the mistakes they are capable of committing during the Euros then see them do that in a red and white jersey later this year.

  16. And I don’t really think yesterdays matches told us anything new about our players. AA’s brilliance wasn’t surprising, I am still raving about that pass he made with only the slightest of touches of his ankle when surrounded by players to get Kerzhakov in a one on one, which the latter duly missed. I think that might’ve been the last we saw of him, surely the Russian sp*d will be preferred now as a main striker.

  17. Well at least last night showed 2 things. szcesney is still raw and an experienced deputy is required at arsenal. arshavin whilst the tv showed he would play left actually played in a 2 behind the main striker in a sort of xmas tree formation and looked superb. however i cannot see him back at arsenal now. the pundits were drooling over him and zenit will surely pay the required £6m. if they dont my message to wenger is put the xmas tree up early walcott gervinho podolski rosicky arshavin chamberlain ryo and campbell could all fight for those 2 positions behind rvp and when rvp needs a rest one of those 8 can step up

  18. Clerkenwell Gooner

    Good old Andrei, looks like he’s decided to play for his place back at Arsenal, make Wenger “fall in love” all over again.

    Cue Barbra:

    Poor old Sir Chesney, and his Jens moment, and in front of his home crowd. Painful. Hope he can bounce back quickly.

  19. So that wife, mother and now father, expeckting his son Shaqueel to speak up soon.
    If he doesn’t sign, let him play out his contract, his a model professional and would be a commited captain till the end of the season.

    Arshavin is Arshavin, they only good he did yesterday for me was upping his market value. I’m not missing him, he was a delight last nite tho

    I could defend Sczseny’s mistakes yesterday, but I wouldn’t. The goal particularly, he shouldn’t be missin that, lack of communication on his part.

    PS. There is just something about Rosicky’s movement, he moves like a born star.

  20. The Germans are comming.

  21. Upper Street Gooner

    good post

    you raise some interesting points on andrei. from the look of him yesterday he also very much enjoys being the ‘go to guy’ of his team. You say he played the same position for arsenal but that was only on paper his role was much freer . He was exceptional yesterday an offered a spark in the final 3rd which we lack at times since cesc left. His body reactions to missed chances and goals yesterday is fascinating….nothing. no reaction to anything

    The fans who booed would have booed nearly any player that day coming on for aoc. continuing to use andrei as the shield to protect the manger betrays the depth of ill feeling for his decision making amongst certain sections of the support and it came to a head that day.

    booing any of our players or coaches at the ground is a complete and utter disgrace but lets call it what it was rather than what some prefer it to be.

  22. I agree with USG

  23. If there is any substance to the comments emmenating from Rsvp’s father, then we are on another ‘merry go round’ with respect to one more star player at Arsenal. I find this process so disheartening.

  24. Upper Street Gooner

    good article from szczesny, shows good attitude and isn’t hiding from responsibility for yesterday

  25. YW – good read this morning, thanks.

    One thing about Andrei, he is “always” calm and under control. Gratified to see him deliver on the big stage.

    I felt empathy for Szcz. He is young, so the experience is part of his long journey.

    At this point in time, his decision making and movement off off the line is an area that needs work. It’s a shame Fabianski can’t take advantage of this opening.

  26. @Jabba
    You are completely ignoring that Andrei has been booed after that game as well.

  27. Upper Street Gooner

    Djourou agent very much hinting that he is moving this summer to italy.

    Shame as i think he is an excellent 4th choice cb and has shown he is a capable starter when given a run of games in the team.

    replacing the talent level isn’t really the problem, as there are lots of players potentially capable of playing to that level but finding the one who is the right fit in terms of aspirations is harder.

    The biggest worry is meeting the squad rules for next year. Of the 25 my understanding is that 8 have to have been trained in britain for 3 years before their 21 birthday but now must be over 21?

    Denilson, Bendtner, Cesc, have all left or will leave. with the futures of walcott and djorou also up for grabs these guys will need to be replaced by players who meet the criteria

  28. Upper Street Gooner


    I was at the game as i was at every home game throughout the season. There is a huge difference between a few twats booing a player to a third of the stadium doing it. The worst response to an individual player in that game was by a country mile to Djourou but only people at the ground could tell you that. His substitution was cheered by a large section of fans and it was a disgrace.

    The vast majority of those who booed were boing the manager decision to bring off AOC and dont let anyone tell you any different.

    Andrei is maligned by some but think you will find a huge amount of arsenal fans think he is a genius and that frustrates them as we couldn’t get the best out of him for a number of different reasons….it happens not every signing pans out

  29. No USG, the rule is different. The subtlety is that no more than 17 players can be deemed non-homegrown. The squad does not have to be 25 players strong but the 17 is an immovable limit.

  30. What is the holding up on the contract? Is it up front money? Guaranteed money? years or what? Does any one knowe the 411 or the skinny on the situation is?

  31. Upper Street Gooner


    so we could have 17 and say 5 home grown over 21 but then just have 22 in the squad but an unlimited amount of under 21 such as aoc, wilshere, campbell, miquel etc?

    would that not be leving us a little short on experience though. would that be reducing our ability to have depth with experienced over youth?

  32. Yep, that’s about the long and short of it USG.

    If the overseas players are experienced, then the age of homegrown doesn’t matter. You could field 8 experienced internationals and 3 English youngsters. Age though isn’t important; look at Walcott for example. He is an experienced player now, surely?

  33. Still havn’t seen any highlights of yesterday’s matches so am relying on word of mouth.

    I hear that Szescney made a couple of howlers – too bad. Did Petr cech not concede 4 goals yesterday? Or am i missing something.

  34. Upper Street Gooner


    i completly agree, i’m very much of the belief experince is defined via on pitch game time and first team and exposure to first team training rather than a players human age.

    Denilson, diaby, walcott, clichy, cesc, etc were young in years but had been though 4 or 5 full seasons with the first team and the pressures that comes with. Ashly young was older than they last year but he had never been subjected to the scrutiny and the level of week in week out performance levels of all of our players.

    I think with the standard of the 3 starting cbs that we have and Song ability to play there its a its an opportnity to develope a bartley type player who would cost significanlty less in wages. I think Miquel needs games at a good championship club (rare for prem clubs to take chances on young cbs). Anyhow i think cb is a position of strength at the club

  35. Upper Street Gooner


    type 101 best goals into google. has all the highlights of everygame taking place anywhere. great site

  36. Usg, yea thanks.

    Am starting to think you are bi-polar, maybe even have multiple personalities because this Jabba/Usg combo is something else. One minute you’re talking like the love child of Tony Pulis, the next minute you are posting well thought out arguements and comments.

    Are you playing some kind of sick game? If you are, well played.

  37. Upper Street Gooner


    not particulaly good at games

    i think what i think. the other posts are just as well thought out not necasarily 100% spot on but they arent written in haste or in anger. There is much that is brilliant about the club and very little that needs changing. I just feel there are some improvements that can and should be made quicker than they have been. sometimes that comes across like im a doomer, but i can assure you there is a huge difference bwteen me and your le grove or current gooner reader.

    There are a few on here who portray how i feel allot more elequintly but the ideas are very similar.

    I believe in discussion and debate and enjoy learning from others some on here wont here a word against their own beliefs.

    On another note, very much looking forward to seeing Podolski in action later. Love seeing our players in action. think Ronaldo and his boys could cause some problems. They have some big strong robust defenders and any side with ronaldo and nani presents a goal threat at all times. Bendtner as well, the guy has quality and for is a potentially quality all round target man. either for a future fee or for him to force his way into the manager think i hope he shines as much as rvp

  38. Great post yogi

    Russia looked superb yesterday. Andrei will always remain a mystery. Certainly understood why cesc would be first choice at that position but cesc missed a lot of time during the last few yrs and Andrei could have given us a real spark. The idea that having AA in that position would make us to attacking and lose balance is tough to accept We have the highest line and most attacking group of defensive players in the outside of the nou camp. . Why not play as many aggressive attacking players in the front 4 and let the defenders stay a little closer to home and defend? That’s how the rest of the known world does it. We have been outscored and out defended by the top teams in the table consistently for several years running so what we are doing has mixed results at best. I love the club but there are so many things that just make you scratch your head.

    Wojo will be a great GK someday but he has some way to go still. We really need a top quality back up who can step in for injuries or if wojo has some struggles next year. I still would be very happy with fabianski and myself I think he deserves a chance to fight for number 1 but I highly doubt he will be with us next season. I have said before that I would love to see us make another run after schwarzer. Barring that Craig gordon would be my next choice. A brad Friedel like signing would be ideal

  39. pedantic george

    Anyone who calls Arsene “senile” deserves no debating time.

  40. Usg, okay man, whatever you say.

    You may not be a doomer but sometimes your comments make you come across as one.

    Take for example the month of january when we were going through a ‘crises’, you were weak and tried to drown us in a pool of negativity. Always going over the same thing, over and over and over again.
    Come to think of it, once we go through a rocky patch again i will be expecting the usual from you, why? because there is a thin line between constructive criticism of arsenal and being a doomer cunt, i think you constantly cross that line despite what you Say.

    On the euros, i will be a lil busy today so i may miss the match, just fucked up right.

  41. pedantic george

    “Rosicky has been ”fabulous” this seaosn…hmmm come on mate maybe we have differing standards but i wuld hope that the world fabulous comes out when talking about rvp and kosciellny not rosicky.
    If you call rosicky fabulous this year im inclined to think that you dont watch any arsenal games bar hsi very good workmanlike perfromance on sunday
    Whenw ill Arsene be good and ready to spend hopefully before we havent got any left. If we dont make 4th and the smart money is on us not at the moment, we will be 35m less better off than the revious year……makes that 50m shrink quite quick doesnt it
    People on here get called a cunt for questioning a manger who has deliverd negative results for 4 years and yet one of those very name callers is saying that rosicky is having a fabulous season……………..YOUR FUCKING MAD

    With regards to Rosicky okay fair do lets not talk about goals. Lets talk about running a game??? How did we do with him in our mid week cup team last year?? was it not wenger who complained that fatigue destroyed our team and yet you gloss over the fact that we couldnt with rosicky captain get it done easily against hartlepool, leeds, ipswich, leyton orient and then got made to look like school boys against utd. This Rosicky??

    Or do you mean the rosicky that our manager refused to play in prem games as he didnt trust him, the same rosicky that wenger would play wilshere ”in the red zone” at all costs to prevent rosicky playing…….now i knwo what you mean. what a fabulous 2.5 years from our Tomas. Loved the effort he put in in the Utd game with those free kicks………… what a trojan!!

    He played well on sunda but lets not go mental. He oput insome tackles (effort) god we love that at the emiartes someone actually busting a gut doesnt happen enough but my god we will trumpet your performance if you do. We played well for 20 mins against Villa are you saying rosicky was fabulous?

    For the rest of season he has been a bit part in a team thats havign a very averge year so far he has come on and influenced no game by winning it for us”

    Just some random extracts from a random day 31st January.
    Just so we don’t forget how knowledgeable and supportive Jabba was.Before Yogi rightly binned the odious twat.I hope we never see his like again……………..oh wait!!!

  42. pedantic george

    Nice one khalifha.
    You are making a habit of making me look a prick.

  43. Anyone know how long Arshavin has left on his contract?

  44. pedantic george

    No one actually knows Marc.But the thinking is 12 months

  45. yah usg,
    Yee have little faith.

  46. …….at the very least.
    at the most, there is an agenda at work….

  47. PG … @4:27
    Thats my favourite hobby you know.

  48. Cheers George that’s what I thought. Hopefully a good tournament will add a couple of million to his value.

  49. I’m feeling quite proud right now
    There’s been an active Arsenal player in every game so far @ the Euros
    AW knows..

  50. Upper Street Gooner


    were arsenal brilliant for the rest of the season?

    was rosicky consistently great in every game, how many games did we win just on his back. everything that was said about rosicky in his previous 5 seasons let me repeat that 5 seasons hasen’t been wonderful.

    you act as if we didnt stumble incredibly drunk over the line for 3rd. this fabulous season you seem to talk of rosicky appears to be actually a good 15 game spell.

    at the time of writing arsenal were very much struggling for 3rd. luckily spurs utterly collapsed and even then our own collapse nearly let them and newcastle may i add back in.

    rosicky is an excellent squad player now that he has found some mojo for the first time in years. lets hope he pays back arsenal for our loyalty to him as not many clubs would have done.

    i see nothing rude or horrible in my previous statements.

    lets see what you said regarding us being much better than utd and how we would be better in defence this year. lets see what you said about the club keeping nasri and cesc. lets see how rude you are portraying your points.

  51. Upper Street Gooner

    i forget that i have more of a life than looking through months of previous blogs to make what is actually a weak point. guess there isnt much to up there in blackburn on a weekend

  52. Half-time 1-0 to Denmark. Holland not getting much joy.

  53. Sensational Arsenal

    Am i the only one not agreeing that Holland are playing like Arsenal? In fact, after Denmark’s goal, they are the ones reminding me of Arsenal with their short one touch passing, triangles and runs.

  54. pedantic george

    I picked one day at random. I will pick another if you like?

  55. The only Arsenal player who has played well so far in the Euro’s is AA23

    What odds Huntelaar comes on and scores!!!!!!

  56. pedantic george

    Anyone who calls Arsene “senile” deserves no debating time.

  57. pedantic george

    Rosicky played well too

  58. Can’t help thinking Robin would benefit from players of the calibre of Walcott and Song out there.

  59. Holland in trouble. Sneijder has created some good chances but no goals yet. He and RVP seem to have patched up their differences from the last WC. Go RVP.

  60. 20 to go and the game in the balance. Holland could easily score 2 or 3 but you wouldn’t bet against a break away goal from Denmark.

  61. Another great pass that the huntlaar should have done better. Let’s buy sneijder.

  62. Robben has to be the greediest player i have ever watched, ridiculous.

  63. I can’t believe Holland have not put at least one chance away yet. It is eerily like watching The Arsenal play some bottom of the table team and yet be unable to find the finishing we need to win the game. Not surprisd Denmark scored though as they did finish above Portugal in their group. Why the hell was Robben not taken off? Every time he gets the ball, he cuts inside and blasts wide, ignoring RVP, Huntellar and amyone else who may be in and around the box. Frustrating.

  64. And sneijder is one of the best midfielders in this generation, for me he is better than the much overrated xavi and iniesta

  65. Was that a penalty?

  66. Well the ball clearly hit his hand but there really was nothing he could have done to get out of the way. Good call by the ref, unlike Webb yesterday

  67. Denmark won but Bendtner is fucking hopeless.Who is going to be mug enough to take him off our hands?

  68. Wow the dutch lost, well, well.

    Robben, atrociously greedy, one dimensional, sorry had to mention him again but seriously.

  69. Podolski starts for Germany not Mertesacker

  70. I cant stand robben,he’s got a face that looks like it needs slapping.what a selfish twat. Well done denamrk even though i was hoping for holland to win.

  71. Firstlady – It’s funny cos it’s true!!

    Moe – I fully agree. When the keeper kicked it straight to him, he had RVP wide open on his left with noone between him and the goal. Of course he shoots and hits the post. What a twat.

  72. The Dutch flanks were nothing like arsenal’s. There full backs did not provide enough support in attack…maybe it was tactical.
    Agree, why is there so much reluctance to sub Robben? Give him about 60 min at max. to get a goal.

  73. Wow, disappointed with the Holland squad effort
    This group just became more interesting to watch.
    RVP not at his clinical best. But the whole team seems out of sync.

  74. Holland had 29 shots (9 on target) against Denmark’s 8 (7 on target).
    Posession was 53% Holland v. Denmark 47%. Pretty even.
    Well played Denmark. It would be very interesting if we got a score draw between Portugal and Germany, 2-2 or 3-3 would be great to watch.

  75. Irishgray

    Surprised he wasn’t substituted, he took like half the shots of the combined holland team.

    Hoping to see abit of Podolski now.

  76. Peacefrog – The fact is he never passes the ball. And because of that the fullback could not be bothered making overlapping runs. If Holland had someone else on that wing instead of him I think they would be truly terrifying as the amount of link up play they would create would be amazing. RVP, Huntelar, Schneijder, Van Bommel, Kuyt, Van Der Vaart, Afellay. It is a hell of a list of players that are immediately taken out of the game any time Robben gets the ball. You only have to look at RVP’s season and you realise how important Theo Walcott’s contribution was.

  77. Schnieder was quite impressive espescially inthe second half,I thought the holland left back was left exposed alot by those who were supposed to be protecting him. van p all round game was good but not so much in burying the chances he got. at the end holland looked knackered,this group really is a difficult one and whichever team qualifies has my support to go on and win it.

  78. Waiting to see poldy now,last I saw him play was inthe world cup so this will be a good place for me to see him again before he dones the red and white come august.

  79. Moe @ 6:42

    One player like sniejder would improve us more then any 3 – 4 players who cost 10M . That was probably not true 6 yrs ago and buying an expensive player like that is a risk, but the reward could be huge. We have lots and lots of excellent players but another “superstar” player like that could easily make a huge difference

  80. Bill

    Ha! i agree completely but we can all dream can’t we? We are never getting sneijder, that i can be pretty sure of. It’s a pity because he probably would be the missing ingredient in Arsenal finishing with silverware year after year. But unfortunately he’s too expensive for us.

  81. arsenalandrew

    Robben really is an arch prick.

    He single handedly made Holland look ordinary.

    I thought after the last debacle and an evident aversion to pass to N E One (let alone one of the most lethal strikers on the planet) he might have learnt his lesson.

    So, a thick prick, then.

  82. It is good to have th euros after three weeks of boredom without football but the downside is any player that plays well will be oogled and demands made to buy him.Teams in the tunnel,come on germany,i cant take two of my teams losing on the same night.

  83. Upper Street Gooner


    why not pick some days over last summer, bring a sprinkling of yours and mine.

    lets see how our perspective predictions have panned out over the last few years.

    i called many things on here george but repetitive and doomey followed by cunt seem to be the order of the day when im not being praised for good posts. i dont seem to get that much wrong though, which is a shame as it would be brilliant if we had done as you expected last year. sadly wishful thinking doesn’t get you consistency and quality in 4 comps.

  84. Mertesacker lacks match fitness.

  85. Upper Street Gooner

    like podolski not being afraid of shooting from distance, something we need more of. looks like a very different type of player to gerv

  86. Ronaldo being completely marked out of the game so far.

  87. Holland tired out too easily. May have played too many warm up games.

    Can’t really diss any of their players. They all had their moments. RvP, Robben, Sneijder…Huntelar probably annoyed me most. Affelay looked good attacking thru the middle for a while. Sneijder’s good but far from great (I’d rather have AA).

    They need to do something about the makeup of the team. They are somewhat predictable.

    The danes stuck to their game plan and made it count. Nothing wrong with Nicky B either. He played ok. Agger & his partner were awesome.

  88. I just got my gravatar back 🙂

  89. Those who see Podolski as a winger are in for a shock.
    Methinks AW’s gonna have to play 4-4-2

  90. Did that cross the line?

  91. Didn’t cross the line but dam that was close

  92. I think POLDI IS going to get a goal at least in the second half.

  93. Upper Street Gooner


    they are exactly as advertised. capable of creating some excellent chances but weak at the back.

    if there coach was asked before the game, we will guarntee you this number of chances to fall to these of your players over the 90 would you take it, and i bet he would.

    shows what can happen in football though. such a good tourn as there are only good teams there. for every remarkable world cup upset and the colour presented by different nations, the standard of football is reduced significantly by having so many teams

  94. Aman

    If wenger plays a 4-4-2 consistently in a season, i will run outside naked and post the video on youtube. You get my point, he won’t do it, the 4-3-3 is set up throughout the whole club and we’ve been bedded into it comfortably.

  95. Upper Street Gooner


    it would be nice if aw developed multiple formations for the side to fit different situations.

    we need to score more, particularly at home. we need to concede less home and away. different formations could do that.

    rvp could play anywhere. i thought some of his link up play first half today was outstanding.

    i was amazed at how lazy bendter was today even for his nation

  96. and the Euros hit new heights with ‘Arry the guest panelist on BBC1’s half time round up – he’s in full Ron Manager mode tonight, isn’t it? “four four two, two two four, 0898 300 798?”


  97. I see The Arsenal have lined up a friendly with FC Koln on August 12, should be interesting for Podolski to play against his former club.

  98. Meddi running rings against brazil after his team looked out of sorts,who knew the boy could sprint.more entertaining game than the germany vs portugal.

  99. Just watched the Denmark goal again. Correct me if I am wrong but a keeper should not be beaten like that, I mean right through his legs? I did enjoy his acrobatics to at least make it look good but surely at this level he should do better?

  100. Firstlady – To be honest I just switched over to watch ‘Armageddon’, Germany at times really know how to suck the life out of a game don’t they?

  101. Upper Street Gooner


    it was how de gea was beaten 3 times in the 6-1 against utd. i thought the same then when utd fans said no blame could be attached to him

  102. Ozil looks tired to me. Khedira’s been excellent
    Poldi & Muller look most likely for Germany.
    Veloso, Contrao look good.

    The pragmatic-Bayern approach is a tad overtactical. The occasional Dortmund drive, best illustrated by Hummels’ overlapping, is hard to sustain but it evokes a spontaneous creativity that usually yields goals. Needs a high line atimes but the lone Dane goal today proves the need to break ranks atimes. You can’t always pass your way to the net.
    Schweinsteiger & Lahm kill me with their overpassing

    ..2nd half begins

  103. Messi rather,goonerwife good to have you back,it has been awhile. How is the little goonerette doing?

  104. I think this game needs Miroslav Klose, Germany keep putting in crosses but noone seems to be able to win the ball.

  105. Upper Street Gooner


    overpassing is the danger when teams defend deep and allow you to play in front of them, thats why you must develop a plan b which can take advantage of the opportunities the deep compact defence present you outwide

  106. Upper Street Gooner

    i think ozil hasn’t had enough influence in the final 3rd. goetze for him and klose for gomez excellent options to change a game.

    they havent looked comfortable having to make the play rather than hit on the counter. port look very well coached and have a clear game plan that is working

  107. 1-0 Germany!! Gomez meets one of maybe 50 crosses that were sent in.

  108. Excellent header but where was his marker? Sloppy defending by Portugal.

  109. USG – How can you possibly say that Portugal’s game plan is working when Ronaldo and Nani have been virtually taken out of the game?

  110. Upper Street Gooner


    there game plan was to defend well and try to hit them on the counter. it was 0-0 and there keeper had had nothing to do. thats a game plan irish.

    not every team aspires to dominate possession. they contained supposedly a brilliant attacking side for most of the game

  111. Ronaldo is such an overtyped boob.

  112. Why on earth would you set yourself up to merely hit teams on the break when you have Nani and Ronni in your side?

    Makes no sense.

  113. Agree GKam – always thought Ronni’s boobs were overtyped.

  114. Upper Street Gooner


    because what are those to best at?

    pace, dribbling and winning one on one duels.

    what the best way of getting your best 2 in fact your only 2 good attackers

    though so

  115. WOW Portugal should have scored that.

  116. Upper Street Gooner

    into the situations which they can best exploit

    thought so

  117. Easy to mark two players out of the game if you set yourself up in that way USG.

    What do you think of Ronni’s boobs?

  118. USG – You really think the Portugese game plan included their two best players doing next to nothing? Yes they defended well for the most part but their cout=nter attacks were almost non-existant, hence their game plan was not working.

  119. I like B 🙂 🙂 BS

  120. Two things you couldn’t ever over-hype!

    Tremendous result for Portugal’s innovative game plan!

  121. And the entertainment continues on BBC 1 with Ron Manager & Co …

  122. Upper Street Gooner


    i think there game plan was to negate germany and try to use there brilliant indivduals to nick them the game.

    they wanted to remain compact and solid for as long as possible and be close when the game gets more open later on.

    there two best attacking players play best in space in one on one situations.

    they revert to styfilling tactics in tourns go watch there previous tourns

  123. Not exactly best use of assets though, is it USG? I don’t recall Manure or R Madrid exploiting either Ron or Nan in this way.

    Right, just off to watch their previous tourns …

  124. fukin germans.

    a lucky cross ..why do they deserve such luck god, dont forget they tried invading the world twice and are now invading europe again although through the weapon of currency and politics…bastads…although i hate portugal so i have no sympathy for them slags.

    harry always looks like he is waiting for someone to come in and arrest him for something.

  125. are the press still banging on about rio fukin ferdinand.

    cunts are still picking for woy to admit its coz he and terry cant stand each over and it would ruin team morale, what fuckers.

  126. Upper Street Gooner


    these are different sides though or am i wrong. im not saying they are the right tactics they are nevertheless their tactics though.

    your also still not grasping that both of those to best attributes are dribbling and exploiting one on one mismatches. is port midfield as good as germany……no. do you try and beat the germans at a game you have a lower percentage chance of winning or do you play to your strengths and try and neutralise their game whilst still presenting your 2 best outlets attacking situations to exploit.

    it was working. they hit the bar and gave the germans nothing but possession.

    If england tried to do the same with rooney, walcott and young i think we would be an incredibly dangerous side.

  127. OVERHYPED ANDY, not over typed.
    Sorry ladies, wasn’t aware you were watching with us.
    Andy behave now… 🙂

  128. Ireland up next, they cant wait its been ages since they were at a tournament

    ireland will be absolutely fukin partying hard like……well any other normal weekend!!

  129. USG – It was Germany’s game plan to stifle Ronaldo and Nani, and to also keep Mereles quiet in midfield as he is a very good linkman with both Ronaldo and Nani. Lahm did a great job on Nani, took him out of the game for the most part. Ronaldo was reduced to a couple of shots from outside the area, Boateng and Badstubber did very well too. And yet you insist on saying Portugal’s game plan worked? And you also say that I should go watch their (proper spelling of the word by the way) previous tournaments, maybe you should take your own advice.

  130. I’m not saying you’re wrong USG, I don’t have a clue what Portugal’s tactics were and I think I’ve finally grasped their best attributes (thanks for your patience). It was certainly a dull (tight) game. Can’t see them achieving long term success to be honest if this is the full extent of their attacking ambition.

    I thought Roy handled that interview very well Duke – he just continues to go up in my estimation …

    As for ‘Arry – years of expectation hard to shake off now!

  131. Sorry, Goonerkam – just filling in for Pedantic George there!

  132. Duke – Have already warned The Girlfriend that I will be parking my Irish arse on my favorite barstool in Soldier McGees tavern on Manhattan’s Upper West Side at a very reasonable time of noon, which will hoprefully have me home at a very unreasonable time of well after midnight, grinning like an idiot after Ireland wins and Spain beat Italy. As expected her response to said warning is to go shopping for the day.

  133. Jabba, you could very well make it as a good coach or a manager. Your grasp of team tactics is very interesting,to say the least.
    How was the car race IRISH. those Québecens treating you well I hope.

  134. Upper Street Gooner


    who were the happier of the team after 71 min?

    was it the side who were struggling to create anything with all the possession, or was it the team who had looked compact and solid and still created the best chance.

    Approaching that period of the game, who would have had to have forced it more, where would that have created further opportunities for which side??

    Sometimes teams sacrifice astetics to try and get the job done. would have portugal been happy with a draw before kick off, allot happier than germany thats for sure.

    i asked you to go look at previous tournments as if you would see that these are quite common tactics employed by them.

    The German game plan was to impose themselves on the portugese side and create opportnities like the dutch side did.

    Like i said team with limitations need to protect themselves. funnily enough a side won the cl this year by doing just that. They had a player sent off in the new camp no less

    sorry for the spelling i’m dyslexic

  135. Ah DUKE. those big effin Germans. What can one do? 🙂

  136. USG – You keep repeating it but you won’t admit that it just did not work for Portugal. Their plan was, and I agree with you here, to defend well and release Nani and Ronaldo (a very formidable combo I hate to admit) but every time they tried that it failed miserably. After 25 minutes or so even the commentators talked about it as Ronaldo had only touched the ball 7 times by then. The closest they came was from a corner, with the chance falling to Pepe as the Germans were man-marking what they thought were the more dangerous players, leaving Pepe completely unmarked.

  137. Upper Street Gooner

    i wrote that before i saw your other post irish

    on another note i think your boys could do well tomorrow. the spirit of the players will be tremendous and they will have bought into traps philosophy. Added ton that there are individuals who europe might not be that aware of but nevertheless have quality to hurt the opposition. If they dont get stage fright and have some luck could be interesting. enjoy tomorrow but good luck on monday

  138. USG – Well first up, apology for the smart comment re spelling. My bad 🙂 I have watched every European and World Cup tournament since 1982 mate so am well aware of the tactics employed by both teams. The posession was actually very even by the way, Germany did not by any stretch of the imagination dominate in that area. Portugal had I think a dozen corners because of Germany’s stalwart defending, where as Germany had only 2 or 3. not bacause they were not attacking but rather because they were more reliant on their wingers getting in crosses. Both teams had almost the same number of shots, both on target and off target. Germany had 12 in total, 6 on target while Portugal had 11 in total, 7 on target. I think it was a very even match but only because Germany were able to stifle Ronaldo and Nani. IMO that is what made the difference, Germany pulled off their game plan whereas Portugal did not.

  139. Upper Street Gooner


    one last thing. set pieces are a fundamental of the game. arsenal fan know only to well how they can be exploited just as well as beautiful free flowing attacking moves. it was the best chance of the game by far and pepe is major threat in the opposition penalty area from set plays.

  140. G’Kam – had to cancel the trip to Montreal for the Grand Prix. 😦

  141. USG – I agree with you re Pepe, great player all round. But I think he was unmarked because it had been drilled in to the German defenders to stay close to Nani and Ronaldo and co. rather than just picking up random markers. Towards the end of the game Nani popped up on the left a few times and all of a sudden Germany were exposed. Portugal could and probably should have equalised because of that.

  142. you know what would be hilarious is if Harry was arrested while on TV commentating on a game. LOL

  143. Oh ,sorry to hear that man. Will be pulling for your boys against Croats. Good luck.
    Where the heck is HUNTER ???

  144. That’s a pretty fair assessment of the game Irish and an excellent summary, too (if I may say so).

    I’ve also caught one or two of these tournaments – all since 1970, to be precise although I’m still mystified by approximately 50% of everything I see on these occasions!

    Maybe that’s why we stay interested?

    (Can still remember re-enacting Gordon Banks’ – nay, the world’s – greatest ever save from 1970. Even now in my head I still occasionally pull that one out of the bag!).

  145. Hunter indefinitely suspended following TWO red cards for foul posting.

    Not sure if anyone has come back from that before so don’t hold your breath. Such a shame – he is a likeable lunatic for the most part but prone to losing all shape and discipline.

    I STILL think ‘Arry’s got something in his locker …

  146. AA

    Was that the year Banks got injured and the chelsea keeper took over?

  147. oh man. Two reds in one day. He is a goner. Who pushed his buttons. ?? This time.. LOL
    Crazy Greek. I’ll miss him.

  148. Can’t say it’s been easy to stay awake watching Euro 2012 so far. Some real dross football compounded by some shite officiating. I hope it gets better soon but with Ireland & England coming soon I fear it won’t.

  149. I think he got food poisoning – don’t quote me on that – where’s ConsolBob when we need him?! Peter Bonnetti took over and had a torrid time, generally carrying the can for our demise eventual exit, I think. I remember also Bobby Moore being arrested for alleged shoplifting; we felt pretty paranoid the world was against us. No idea if the world actually WAS but it gives you an idea of how highly the England side was thought of at the time (and many reckon that side was superior to the 1966 World Cup winning squad. Sadly I was only 4 in 1966 …)

    Banksy lost an eye in a car crash quite soon after that tournament (within a couple of years); he was my favourite all-time goalie and I can still recall the sense of loss I felt when I heard the news he probably wouldn’t play at the highest level again. I felt as badly as I had done when the Beatles split up in 1970 …

    No doubt USG could enlighten me as to where it all went wrong for England, tactics-wise … 🙂

  150. If this guy could play well for his country he’s be pretty good.

  151. AA

    I remember following Stoke’s results when Banks was there (how things change). Moore was accused of stealing a necklace I believe,

  152. I think Hunter’s been suspended/banned for a few days now, GK. I don’t think anyone actually WAS pushing his buttons – as you say, he is crazy and he just kept persisting with the anti-English stuff and the dissing of the club history. I was never too bothered by the xenophobia but I just thought if I or anyone else was as negative towards his country as he is to ours there would have been hell to pay. Is he actually Greek?

  153. I don’t know whether Hunter was Greek but most of his comments were Greek to me.

  154. Or maybe double Dutch

  155. Yes, that sounds right – a necklace for Mrs Moore, supposedly.

    As if the captain of England – England! – would stoop to such levels …

    Always shameful how he was never properly recognised for his services and achievements for his country; often wonder whether that incident played a part in that?

    After Banks, Moore was my second favourite player.

  156. Someone made a reference to him being Somalian a couple of months back (during his first suspension I think).

    His powers of recall and the detail he could dredge up were actually quite mind-blowing at times …

  157. I thought he was a bit of a ‘know it all knob’, just like a few others who post here.

    I like to read people’s comments but I hate know it alls. No one on here or any other blog knows what is going on at Arsenal. It is all just our opinions and these people should realise that their opinion is no better (or more correct) than ours,

  158. pedantic george

    Hunter or Jabba?
    Hunter for me all day every day.

  159. pedantic george

    Dups.apart from me of course ? Right?

  160. PHW

    “Hopefully we can reach ­agreement with Robin and ideally he will extend his contract.

    “We have already brought in one new player in Lukas ­Podolski and I believe we will bring in more. I am confident we will, in fact. (My bold)

    “I just hope that Robin will be with us next season because I genuinely feel we can make a real challenge for the ­Premier League title.

    “We had an atrocious start to last season but we recovered to finish third which was a marvellous achievement when you look at the problems that we had with ­injuries.”

    Seems SK has asked PHW to stay on as chairman. That will upset a few.

  161. PG

    I know you are ITK 😉

  162. Yea, have to admit I do kinda miss Hunters ramblings. As to which country he is from, I have no idea but whichever one it is, I offer my heartfelt condolences!

  163. Whatever happened to my favorite WUM James? It has been quite a while since he came sniffing around.

  164. Agree Dups, I find people making supposedly ‘definitive statements’ quite wearisome (probably case of pot and kettle here, I know). But I do like the range of perspectives and the different ideas when they are offered up as possibility rather than FACT. Certainly the more strident someone is the more wary I am of them, for sure.

    Hunter’s recall of match incidents from way-back WAS remarkable at times tho. And I have to admire anyone who’s first language isn’t English making the kind of contributions we routinely get here. I guess I always cut Hunter more slack than most ‘cos of that.

    We were referring to Hunter, George but YOU’RE referring to Jabba …

  165. No . Not Somalian. My guess is Greek. Any ways ,I don’t think he was anti English,per say. I think all this Arsenal bashing in the media and the unfair treatment from the refs. Was getting to him. He was anti FA and anti anyone who wasn’t pro.wenga.
    People mistook that for being anti English and pigeonholed him in a corner he couldn’t get out from. He was nuts about football and. AW was his demigod. Hay , if jabba can find a way back. ,he might too. 🙂
    Have a good one .. Enjoy the footy.

  166. There’s no doubting Hunter was an Arsenal fan & quite knowledgeable. Only his inability to understand that football, pre AW, was still good for us spectators was annoying .

  167. I just thought Hunter was retarded

  168. Upper Street Gooner

    he said he was somalian when he first came on the blog.

    who would have thought george. we did have our one day in the son at about 1am on transfer deadline day once

  169. Upper Street Gooner

    sun. im not that dyslexic

  170. Like all SPUDniks I think JAMES is heartbroken from the choke job his team handed him …..again. Lol

  171. pedantic george

    I think Jabba is ,Irish.
    He is suffering from RSS(repetitive shit syndrome)

  172. I’m just glad you put a comma in there PG 🙂

    USG – OLO

  173. Upper Street Gooner

    would be good to see you talk some football one day george. i understand that you dont know many of the players in these championships or understand much about the sides as you’ve stated before you only really watch arsenal on tv. nice to see you try though. more to football than andrei, rosicky and hating on people with different perspectives. night night

  174. pedantic george

    Jabba I have never said that.
    I watch football all the time.I have told you that time and time again .But as ever you just ignore it and post the same shit.
    I don’t hate people with different views to me .I do dislike idiots like you however.There is no hiding that.

  175. Jabba

    We all know your idea of debate. Reel people in for a debate then spout the same retarded shit over & over until we all say, “fuck off”.

  176. Upper Street Gooner

    reel people in by providing interesting debate it would appear.

    it seems you pick my posts which annoy you, for everyone of them there is one which makes good sense.

    better than some on here who choose to trot out the same rude statements day after day or answer the same criticsms of the club year after year with the same tired increasingly shot to pieces responses.

    much of what i say is tremendously positive about the club but because im not relentlesly positive i get your chat.

    the poster child to your thoughts on the club is hunter the person who is mocked by many of his own brethren. you argue the same points but with much less research and understanding .

  177. Somewhere Gainsburg is weeping…

  178. Very interesting video. Nice to see the warm welcome Yossi gets by some of the ‘Pool players. Although it was very sad seeing Diaby walking back into the dressing room after only a few minutes on the pitch. I think I would gladly go another year without winning anything if it meant we could see him play a full season without injury. Then again, if he did that we would probably win everything 🙂

  179. AA

    He was based in Greece.

  180. USG

    The final assessment is that Portugal’s tactics did not work; they lost. It doesn’t matter if they stifled or parked the bus, they lost, emerged from the game with nothing and that is that. Simples, as our little meerkat might say.

    Denmark? Their tactics worked, rode their luck, capitalised on woeful Dutch finishing and won.

  181. pedantic george

    unfortunately Jabba has forced me to rethink my posting.
    He is correct,I stop posting and discussing football when idiots like him appear.
    Good debate and banter are replaced by the repeating of entrenched positions and petty insults.I am at least as guilty as anyone else for his dumbing down .
    It is tedious for others to have to read the bickering that goes on between certain people(mainly me I suppose).
    I cant help but think the site was much better for the last few months ,then I think that the “Arsene “argument can to applied here ,namely “Yogi knows best”
    So I apologise,and will try harder from here on in to ignore the useless bastards.

  182. pedantic george

    Ps I will re-post that when today’s sermon goes up.
    That will be soon?

  183. In Crete, Andrew. Yes, food poisoning and that Bonetti had a stinker.

  184. The hunter finally became the hunted.

    Ah yes, I knew that line would come in handy someday.

  185. Sermon? No church for me today, a lil busy.

    But Yogi preach on.

  186. Seriously YW, i need my high but you are yet to supply. 😐

  187. pedantic george

    khalifha,No queue jumping.Get in line

  188. Hahaha PG, i think we’re in the wrong line ….. Yogi!

  189. Ah Yogi

    You make us get all tense and on edge, but when we’re about to lose it the day’s post appears, well played. 🙂

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