Blackburn Review: Arsenal Defeat Sums Season Up

Blackburn Rovers 4 – 3 Arsenal

0 – 1 Gervinho (10)
1 – 1 Yakubu (24)
1 – 2 Arteta (33)
2 – 2 Song (o.g.) (50)
3 – 2 Yakubu (58)
4 – 2 Koscielny (o.g.) (68)
4 – 3 Chamakh (84)

Arsenal’s frailties were haplessly exposed at a rain-drenched Ewood Park. Architects of their own downfall, Arsenal’s season was encapsulated in one match. Failure to capitalise, spurning chances at will was compounded by poor organisation in defence with twenty error-strewn second half minutes ultimately deciding the outcome.

We can point to individual errors, poor decisions by officials, bad luck as the reason for defeat. Contributing factors indeed but the first highlights the issues facing the club. Two own goals: one from a corner which Alex Song perhaps could not react to. Koscielny’s? I think he might have dealt better with it but bigger problems arose earlier in the move, Djourou’s failure to time his tackle, Song’s failure to make a challenge, Szczesny not moving toward the forward on the by-line.

The match has been relegated to a side issue since the final whistle. It should not be and the outcome should have been so much different. Gervinho’s early opener hinted at an enjoyable afternoon. Song strode through the centre of the pitch, releasing Gervinho to twist and trickle his shot into the net. Ten minutes gone and things were right with the world, just reward for the opening dominance.

Arshavin might have doubled the lead with his rising shot, Gervinho missed following Bacary Sagna’s purposeful endeavours on the right flank. Ascendency assured, Arsenal promptly relaxed and were punished. A Rovers attack was broken down, the ball intercepted on the edge of the area by Song. The attempt to counter was swiftly broken down and the ragged Arsenal back four played Yakubu onside, his finish unerring into the corner.

Back to square one. Arsenal rocked and rolled with the punches, gradually recovering their composure and ten minutes later, Song released Ramsey on the right. The Welshman had other options in the centre, choosing to wait for the right moment to tee Arteta with the perfect pass for a powerful and accurate finish into the roof of the net.

The moment had arrived, dominance to be turned into points, Gervinho at the centre of all of the attacking goodness, unable to convert his own chances whilst unable to spot the unmarked van Persie yards from him as the Rovers back four tried to keep Arsenal at bay. The second half brought a change in fortune for Rovers, the change in their line-up crucial. Arsenal were content with the position they were in but by the midpoint were chasing the game, vainly but almost valiantly.

Song’s own goal from the corner started the rot, Sagna’s departure meant Djourou came in on the right and Rovers exposed the lack of familiarity with the position. Szczesny saved Formica’s manufactured effort, Yakubu scored from an offside position with Santos not providing enough daylight between himself and the Rovers forward to create the necessary doubt in the officials minds. The lunacy was capped with the fourth, Rovers hitting Arsenal with the counterpunch that we have perfected over the years.

The frenzied finish materialised. van Persie came close, Chamakh scored a peach of a header following the Dutchman’s excellent cross, might have scored a brace in the finale, guiding his header wide. Mertesacker lifted his over the bar when from the comfort of the armchair that seemed the harder option. His and Chamakh’s appearance in the front line at least nailed the lie that Arsenal do not have a Plan B.

And to top it off, on an afternoon of poor decision making by the officials – phantom corners given, dubious and obvious free kicks awarded on a hit and miss basis – a clear penalty denied with time running out, Walcott flattened by Robinson in front of the referee.

The team’s confidence has been bludgeoned, vapourised and twisting in the ether, absent at back, middle and front in the team. The crux of the matter is leadership. There are enough experienced internationals, players whose number of games in their careers register in 200 or more, yet none are taking a grip at the back or in the middle. Why is that? Robin van Persie has been made captain yet that should not stop someone in midfield taking responsibility, or a defender organising.

Problems exist that Arsène has to resolve, solutions which must be found quickly. Not least of which is the formation, one that emphasises the attacking nature of the game but requires solidity in midfield. It needs the players to pursue their opponents when in possession, to hunt in packs as Dortmund showed in midweek, as Barcelona have ruthlessly done in European fields. Arsenal have never got to grips with that on a consistent basis, this season must be the time for the manager to look at a more orthodox formation, changing the personnel appropriately to gain stability in the side.

Post-match, Arsène summed the situation succinctly,

It’s just not good enough and, of course, we are very frustrated. The spirit in the team is quite willing but if you look at the number of goals we have conceded it is just not good enough. You cannot come here and concede four goals the way we did today. On the other hand I believe that the group will take off but it is important that we can get results.

This is the biggest challenge of his Arsenal career. Previous squads have had a natural confidence which has returned during dips in form but this is sustained. This run of form started at Wembley and has not abated. The new arrivals are still gelling into the team and this is where the hope comes from and with four included in the starting line-up at Blackburn, perhaps a brighter future is on the horizon. That seems a distant future right now.

Questions are naturally being asked of the manager. This is a problem entirely within his remit to resolve and answers have been previously found. It seems that more help on the green pitches of Colney, in the dressing room. Something, someone. The status quo cannot remain, the players have the fragility of matchstick men. There is a real danger that continued poor form will lead to mediocrity this season being accepted as the norm, for Arsenal that cannot be the case nor should it be.

Grey skies over the country, grey skies over the club. The looming threat of a Winter of Discontent hangs over the country, there will be a more immediate arrival at Arsenal. Time for the manager to prove his doubters wrong, to recuperate the team. Whatever the solutions are, they need to be found. And quickly.

’til Tomorrow.

385 thoughts on “Blackburn Review: Arsenal Defeat Sums Season Up

  1. Miami..
    You are probably right in saying Blackburn didn’t deserver to win the game.. They are shite… But they did! They didn’t have the offensive capability to really hurt us but we managed to help them on their way by our bad defending. The attack was decent yesterday but let’s not get carried away that all is fantastic.3 nice goals however. And nice to see two newbies scoring.

    It was not just bad luck all round.. There was poor play involved also.

    Goal one for BB… Yakubu… nice finish.. much free space and time in behind the two CB’s?

    Goal two for BB…. Song OG.. Well, yeah.. maybe shit luck there.. He was unsighted by the jumpers in front of him and he was standing in a zonal marking space…

    Goal Three for BB… Yakubu… Again all Arsenal players concentrated around the zone of the 6yd box.. . Three BB players lining up… unmarked… ready to whip the ball back in… Yep you can say Yakubu was offside.. and he WAS… But those free BB players in the box from a set-piece?

    Goal Four for BB…Another OG… Unlucky? Well look at the pattern of play before that.. BB break. Djourou made a horrendous blunder, then Song was easily bypassed and the ball arrived at Koscielny’s feet. There were two Arsenal players involved before Kos got to play his part. He made a wrong choice to play with his right foot IMO. However, we made it quite easy for the ball to arrive at his feet in the first place. Yep I feel sorry for him but he did play it into his own net. Perhaps he should have used his left and sidefooted it back out the direction it came from?

    These are all causes for concern and need addressing. If you stand on the side and take the deserved plaudits when Tony Adams slams in the 4th goal against Everton to clinch a PL title you must also be prepared to take responsibility for what goes on on the field when things go pear shaped… That defensive line is disorganised and not playing as a unit. It was called again correctly today on GOS (Goals on Sunday) by Kamara and Barton on that first Yakubu goal.

    There is no given right to immunity from criticism if one holds the Arsenal managers Job. The performance on the pitch cannot be off-loaded to someone else.. Refs, bad luck etc..These things generally even out over a season.. Yeah we could say we’ve had more than most but that’s just glossing over the cracks and ignoring the deeper issues of consistent poor results now from the team particularly over the last 6 months. And we are sitting 17th this evening in the PL table. 11 points off the leaders after 5 games. That’s the harsh reality that’s hurting all gooners… Whatever their persuasion!

  2. Sorry George, you asked me to get a grip simply because I happened to express my honest opinions after watching us play pretty awfully against a very poor side mate. I assumed I had said something wrong, or incorrect. My bad.

  3. Everyone is entitled to his own opinion. I decided to critisaze Wenger based on the last 5 years and especially last 6 months and rightly so.

    You can abuse me as long as you can, but it won’t change a damn thing. We are in some serious trouble.

    I have every right to what I think about Wenger.

    Night all!

  4. Exactly what happened at Liverpool… American owners take over the club, best players sold (Xabi Alonso, Mascherano etc)… Results start going tits up, all scousers claim Benitez has lost the plot & gets sacked replaced with a proper ‘English’ manager.. Hodgson. The board still don’t give him any support and that’s when the Scousers recognized that it was the board, Gillete/Hicks that were CUNTING them over.
    I’m no AKB however people need to stop swimming in the shallow end of the gene pool & start recognizing that our yank is CUNTING us.
    Out with the board, Wenger should be sent upstairs and bring a new manager in… Don’t know who, but Joachim Lowe or that Jurgen Klopp look good.
    Demonstrations against the board are needed…

  5. good post yogi but I take issue with your statement “solutions have been previously found.” This problem has plagued us for years and has never really been fixed. I borrowed this from another poster on another blog:
    A catalogue of shambolicness, by shambogunner.
    Brought to you in association with breeding mediocrity ltd and the people that brought you hit comidies – Mikael sylvestre, seb squillachi and manuel almunia, amonst others.
    08/09 season;
    27 sept 2008 Arsenal 1-2 Hull. Shambolic.
    29 0ct 2008 Arsenal 4-4 Spurs. Shambolic, were 4-2 up.
    1 nov 2008 newly promoted Stoke 2-1 Arsenal. Shambolic, couldnt defend.
    15 nov 2008 Arsenal 0-2 Aston Villa. Shambolic.
    NEXT GAME 22 nov Man city 3-0 Arsenal….no pride after previous home loss. gutless.
    10 dec Porto 2-0 Arsenal. absolutely shambolic defending and keeping.
    21 april 2009 Liverpool 4-4 Arsenal, 8 goal thriller masks SHAMBOLIC defending.
    10 may 2009 Arsenal 1-4 chelsea. A hiding at home.

    09/10 season;
    12 sept 2009 City 4-2 arsenal. Shocking defending.
    25 oct 2009 west ham 2-2 arsenal. west ham come from 2 down outa nowhere.
    9 dec 2009 olympiacos 1-0 arsenal. Shambolic.
    16 dec 2009 newly promoted burnley 1-1 arsenal. awful stuff.
    24 jan 2010 stoke 3-1 arsenal. FA CUP- knocked out by stoke. Shambolic.
    31 jan 2010 Arsenal 1-3 Man Utd. Mauled in our home stadium. Shambolic lack of drive.
    17 feb 2010 Porto 2-1 Arsenal…nothing learned from the earlier defeat from same team.
    27 march 2010 birmingham 1-1 Arsenal. Almunia is asked one question all day and fails in the last min. phillips equalises after we have 197% possesion. Shambolic defending.
    14 april 2009 Spurs 2-1 arsenal. gutless performance after the 4-4 draw at our place.
    18 april 2009 wigan 3-2 arsenal. Gave away 2-0 lead with 15 mins to play. Disgrace.
    3 may 2009 blackburn 2-1 arsenal. lead lost again because we cant defend corners, or in general play. Flappy-handsky has a nightmare, again.
    p.s we are told we have identified our frailties and will be making the necessary adjustments in the summer. Chamakh arrives on a free and 19m is spent on koscielny and squillachi.

    2010/2011 Season;
    18 sept 2010 Sunderland 1-1 arsenal. rosicky blazes over from the spot, we crumble and allow a last min equaliser after owning the ball.
    25 sept 2010 Arsenal 2-3 west brom. ridiculous, shambolic defending.
    7 nov 2010 Arsenal 0-1 newcastle. Lumped ball into our box, no pace on it and Carroll outjumps everything freely to head into an abandoned goal. Scandalous defending.
    20 nov 2010 Arsenal 2-3 spurs. more hurt for us fans as a two goal lead is surrendered at home and we go down with a whimper. more shambolic defending.
    FOLLOWING GAME braga 2-0 arsenal, a team we hammered at home cruise against us.
    29 dec 2010 wigan 2-2 arsenal. nzogbia sees red and wigan still pegs us back after leading 2-1. nothing new there then.
    FA cup arsenal 1-1 leeds. went out last season to stoke and this is how we kick off this years campaign…lucky to get a pen in the dying moments.
    30 jan 2011 arsenal 2-1 huddersfield. an undeserved win.
    5 feb 2011 NEWCASTLE 4-4 ARSENAL. im not even going there again. newcastle take 6 pts off us for the 2010/2011 season.
    FA cup leyton orient 1-1 arsenal. embarrassing display. right result.
    CARLING CUP FINAL arsenal 1-2 birmingham. relegation bound birmingham beat us in a wembley showpiece in front of millions, laughing stock AGAIN.
    20 APRIL 2011 spurs 3-3 arsenal, another two goal lead thrown away, nothing being learned. humiliating.
    next game bolton 2-1 arsenal. wenger and rest of squad scarper down tunnel at full time leaving Wilshere to offer consolation to travelling fans. awful defending.
    last three games;
    stoke 3-1 Arsenal
    arsenal 1-2 villa
    fulham 2-2 arsenal.
    our manager says theres nothing wrong with second in march and we go on to finish fourth and play a CL qualifier vs udinese..,,i suppose theres nothing wrong with finishing second in a weak CL group aswel and get drawn against Barce either.
    we are told, this time from Gazidis aswel that we will be working hard in the summer to recruit. wenger tells us no-one is leaving. nasri and our cpt leave, we miss out on alverez to inter and jones to utd by delayng and foolishly and arrogantly thinking (A. we are the only interested clubs or (B. the player will choose us over, eh, I dunno Inter Milan and Man Utd respectively.
    deadline day we panic buy players that could have been brought pre asia tour and given time to form understanding with their new teammates. I suppose Arteta was the marquee signing, even though he wudnt get near the utd or chelsea or pool line-up.
    0-0 away to newcastle.
    0-2 at home to liverpool.
    8-2 away to man utd.
    1-0 at home to swansea, although they had the better chances.
    4-3 away to blackburn.

  6. JamesM

    Just being a bit sarcastic man, thanks for telling me the right spelling! 😀

    4th nis definitely achievable, the fact is the season is just started, sure we are in a bad place right now, but shit happens and form comes and goes for all teams. The chavs looked unstoppable about this time last year and they went right off the boil.

    I do think there needs to be a few tweaks to our game, like when we played DEnilson and Song in CM when we needed to tighten up and then went on a 20+ game unbeaten run. A bit negative, but solid.

  7. ““No it’s not unachievable at the mo’ but we seem to be doing everything we can to make it as hard as possible…”

    Well even I cant argue that”

    George – that’s the thing that pisses me off more than anything. Yes, we don’t have some divine right to be winning trophies or even competing for the title, but the guys we have in our squad should be doing sooooooo much better.

    We just seem to be getting steadily worse at defending, steadily less respected/feared and it’s horrible to be watching…

  8. Somewhat Agnostic, I guess what I am trying to get at is even though we certainly contributed to the errors yesterday, we also have to understand that the bounce of the ball also didn’t favour us….. yet again I might add. This team will find its feet we just have to be patient until we get there. Luck is an intangible in a game, it works for and against you and at the moment any moments that have that element in even the smallest % seems to run gainst us. The own goals should not have happened but they did, the off side could have been called it was not, the penalty was indeed a penalty but there again it was not. I do believe that to some degree you make your own luck and thus I also believe you can make your own bad luck and it is no stretch of the imagnation to see the players stressing about what might happen… turning in to just what they dreaded most.

    We support a team because it is in our blood, I try to explain it to my wife but she doesn’t understand it at all. Arsenal are in my blood whether good or bad and yes they have given more grey hairs this year but I know in time I’ll be smiling again.

  9. damn tomth_oy,

    I wouldn’t want to offend u or your friend shambogunner.

    After 66 years, have u forgiven the germans?

  10. tomth_oy, so what are you saying that Arsenal should never lose a game? or perhaps Arsenal should only lose games by 1 goal, or maybe that Arsenal should never have a bad game because everyone knows Arsenal are perfect?

    There is no divine right for us to win anything. There are 11 players on the pitch working hard to win for the club and the fans… you know what, they are also human. I know I am not perfect, though my wife sometimes thinks I am (I’ll let her believe that for moment).

  11. I think we forget sometime that those players are hurting worse than we are with the performances of late. They’ll be working hard to get through this hump…

  12. JamesM.I said yesterday that this team is less than the sum of the parts ,which is the opposite to Wengerball teams of the past.

    I don’t pretend to know the answers but I do know that Wenger has the best chance of finding the solution.
    I can’t begin to tell you the esteem I hold him in,and the respect for him as a man that I have,

  13. JamesM.I said yesterday that this team is less than the sum of the parts ,which is the opposite to Wengerball teams of the past.

    I don’t pretend to know the answers but I do know that Wenger has the best chance of finding the solution.
    I can’t begin to tell you the esteem I hold him in,and the respect for him as a man that I have,

    Fair play George – we’re in the season now and we both want the same for the club.

    Guess all we can realistically do is shout the side on and keep our fingers crossed.

  14. Miami,
    The Arsenal are in my blood too.. I’ll follow them all the way down to the conference if that ever happens..

    And you do make your own luck. We are not making much of it recently. And as I said in an earlier post if this game could be taken in isolation then perhaps we could write it off and forget it.

    Can you imagine how nervous the Ems is going to be on Saturday against Bolton.. until we score 1 or 2 and get ahead.. and god help us if they score first.. the nerves! Anyway I think we’ll win that.. hope we’ll win that.

    Nevertheless, I do remember Bertie Mee leading us to the historic double.. In the days when that was one hell of a mightly achievment. Only the 2nd in the Century.. However, the same manager led us to something like 15th or 16th place a few seasons later! (74/75)

    It’s much more a results driven game nowadays and all managers live and die by this criteria. I’m not for one minute advocating the Chelsea model of sacking a poor guy who finished 2nd and narrowly lost a CL Final,or anything remotely close to it, but Arsenal and Arsene can be victims of this too. Only difference is IMO is that we set that bar much lower. i.e. 4th and CL is, it appears, acceptable. But the way we are heading that bar will be approached if the team don’t dramatically improve this season..

    Do I think they will improve? Yes sure I do, we can only but shoot up the table after a string of wins as we are down among the muck.. However, the final finishing point is very much debatable and worrying.

    I’m off!

  15. I have to agree with Dexter on one point. People need to remember that the Wenger years of the past were not all like the Invincibles year. We did have dodgy starts, awful patches, lose three or four games on the trot, suffer heavy defeats etc but we had good seasons overall and still won not a few cups and a couple of titles.
    If we were top of the table now, a lot of you would be saying (rightly) that we can’t read anything into our position in September. So think on, as I am sure pedantic george would say.

    Anyway – good night.

  16. Excuse my ignorane, but what is the NLD?

    North London Derby

    I believe the abbreviation was originally coined by scum fans i.e. “I knew we were inconsistent but we’re gonna get rinsed in the NLD”…

  17. Fellow Arsenal fans I was only highlighting the fact that our defence has been a problem for years, and for whatever reason Wenger has been unable to fix it. There seems to be a fair number of people who want to give him the chance. The real question is can he? I’m not anti Wenger or a doomer, merely pointing out a problem to which Wenger has not found a solution. I don’t believe we have a divine right to win either. I would just like to see us stop making schoolboy errors, focus for 90 minutes, and stop throwing away points. Cheers

  18. Ha! Cheers JamesM

    I fucking hate how everything gets abreviated these days FFS! 😀

    I thought JJ was referring to something in response to that Stan Kroenke article!

  19. All about Spooks George.

    If you take the first letter from each character’s sentences then you can deduce who we’re signing in Jan, who from and the fee!!

  20. Dexter, you can ignore or not ignore whatever. All I am saying is that this is a different team and a different season, if you want to string seasons along then go ahead

    What grip do I need to get? As I have told many and will tell you, I just simply look for things to turn around, stating what happened yesterday over and over will not change the scoreline. I believe that with time the team will get better and I saw signs yesterday.

    You seem to think I am “kidding” myself, I only responded to you accordingly mi bredrin.

    Bill, you were commending the defense not too long ago and after one match we are in the same place. You see I cant take that yo you type of thing. From game to game we are good or the worse and I am the one who nee

  21. Two own goals killed us. We have juts invented new ways to lose. Maybe it’s time to take heed to these words. Wenger must go. I’ve been writng this since March 2011. It looks like it is time for a change. Before you go nuts look at trhe facts. The guys have been on a downhill slide since we lost to Barca. Enough said.

  22. Wenger said ‘The next strategy is to bring the young players through that we have at the club, like Ryo, like Chuks Aneke, like Benik Afobe, like Francis Coquelin, like Emmanuel Frimpong. We want to bring them through and give them a good environment in which to develop. The other step is to get the few injured players back as quickly as possible and then we will have a very strong squad.

    ???? we are a fukin college!!!

  23. PaulN

    Thats all good mate. I wasnt stringing seasons together, just stating that we havent played well for fucking ages! The defence hasnt improved and doesnt look like doing so at the moment, even though we now have a keeper that the vast majority of Goooners are happy with. And we have our very own big fucking german CB too.

    What you need to get a grip on, is your cooment that I am somehow wavering…. From what?

    My being at Ewood, singing all game, getting pissed on before, during and after the game and hearing Blackburn fans singing; “You must be shit, coz we’re beating you 4-2” I think I am allowed to vent my spleen a little, no? Even if I wasnt there too. Jeeez, what am I meant to do? Pretend we played and defended well?

    You’re a good guy PaulN and I am not trying to pick fights with anyone, well none of the decent people on here anyways! 😀

  24. Maybe Wenger needs to open an academy because he obviously has a passion for teaching players and not so much the winning, he cleraly enjoys seing his players come to fruition maybe more then his team parading a cup.

  25. DukeG

    That crack pipe will be the death of you man! 😀


    Go ask Duke if you can borrow his crack pipe dude.

    I remember us losing a home game 3-0 to Boro who had 1 shot on goal all game.

  26. dex,

    you go right ahead pal. we are all alowed to vent, sod the aclf etiquette of being up in the clouds not allowed to say anything untoward.

  27. “My being at Ewood, singing all game, getting pissed on before, during and after the game and hearing Blackburn fans singing; “You must be shit, coz we’re beating you 4-2″ I think I am allowed to vent my spleen a little, no?”

    I believe their exact words were ‘We’re winning 4-2, we’re winning 4-two-oo-oo, how shit must you be? we’re winning 4-2.”

    Regardless of the exact phrasing, it was upsetting. Could almost be called a nadir, although I hesitate to say we’ve hit our lowest point yet…

  28. JamesM

    You keep on correcting me!!! Grrrrr!!! Haha! I knew what the wording was and the rhythm, melody, tone and timbre too! 😀

    I think we are on an upward curve now; we conceded 50% less goals than in our previous away fixture afterall.

  29. Dexter, my bad if I offended you.To me the team actually played well against Udinese and Liverpool, until the sending off. We defended exceptionally against Dortmund and have defended well in most matches to be honest. I saw a lot of positives yesterday but hat’s just me.

    You too are a kool kat!

    I believe Team Spirit has summed up this season quite perfectly.

  30. george it hasnt worked, im in a foul mood. this was our very near strongest team just wilshere n tv out. . i cant see the light!!!

  31. “I think we are on an upward curve now; we conceded 50% less goals than in our previous away fixture afterall.”

    Now I can’t argue with that!

  32. I think United will come down to earth. Teams are having loads of chances but not taking them at present.

    They got their customary pen I see. (just watching the match)

  33. Assuming Sp*rs have ditched their racist song about Greedy. Quite annoying to hear the MOTD commentators mentioning his name as they score..

  34. They got their customary pen I see. (just watching the match)

    That’s what generally happens if you scythe down someone who’s about to shoot…

  35. I hope all the Wenger apologists are happy with what this man is doing to our club. He can no longer motivate the players. He has zero tactical nouse. Time to go.

  36. “That’s what generally happens if you scythe down someone who’s about to shoot…”
    Unless you are an Arsenal player ,that is!

    Yeah I used the weasel word ‘generally’ in there!

  37. “Are you Arsenal in disguise” sung today at both WHL and OT.

    We are a laughing stock of football thanks to Le Senile Prof.

  38. “We are a laughing stock of football thanks to ‘Le Senile Prof’ ”

    And he want us to post counter arguments.
    I cant begin to tell you how pathetic I find these disrespectful imbecilic twats.

  39. I heard Torres had a miss of the century. Just saw it and it was really the miss of the century. The chavs should’ve got something out of the game, the United goalie and defence does not convince me and I feel their wheels will come off. Maybe wishful thinking.

    I read the players had a word and wants a defensive coach to work with them ( a souce said according to The Mirror ) that means it is really rubbish. maybe thats what is needed, somone to sort our defence once and for all.

  40. “4th is like a trophy”
    “2nd for twenty years would be great”
    “if someone is better than you, you must accept it”

    All loser statements from the man who is supposed to motivate our players to win.

    Insult me all you want but all you AKB’s are a dying breed.

  41. Goalie,what are your big achievements in life?
    You being a winner.
    In case you missed it

    “I cant begin to tell you how pathetic I find these disrespectful imbecilic twats.”
    That is you by the way ,in case you are so thick that you do not realise

  42. -3 wins in the last 18 league games.

    – Losing a Cup Final to a now relegated team, a team that scored the fewest goals in the Premiership.
    -Becoming the first team in Premiership history to lose a 4 goal lead and with only 20 minutes left.

    -Throwing away a 2 goal lead against the Spuds….twice in a season.

    -Persisting with a goalkeeper that was totally out of his depth.

    -Buying quality cover at Centre back. But was willing to waste 15M on a 17yr old who can’t even make the bench. You couldn’t make it up LOL !

    -Throwing away points because we can’t defend.

    -Insulting the fans by saying we don’t know what we are talking about because most of us haven’t had half a day in football…the same fans who pay his wages.

    – Announcing he would be happy to finish 2nd for the next 20 years.

    -Droaning on about mental strength and team spirit which everyone can see we don’t have.

    -Telling everyone this is the best squad he has ever had. AN ABSOLUTE INSULT TO THE INVINCIBLES

    -Not getting a defensive and goalkeeping coach who has a clue.

    -Ten games to go and only the title to play for and we win TWO games. Abysmal doesn’t begin to describe it

    What I am asking now is for an AKB or two to come out of hiding and give evidence for the defence. You want him to stay tell us why he should. C’mon, don’t be shy.

  43. Arsenal’s miserable start to the season reminds me of Bayern Munich’s start to last season.Their defending was all over the place and could not put the ball in the back of the net for sometime as Robben and Ribery(key players) were out for quite sometime.They started off well in the UCL and did well in the competition’s group stages and went on to lose only to Inter at home in the knockouts.Bayern were on with 8 points from 7 games with 3 losses from those 7 games.They grinded out results slowly without really playing well and kept it tight at the back.Slowly gained confidence and went onto finish 3rd with a UCL play off place.Arsenal can take a leaf out of their books and solely concentrate on getting on to top-4 finish with a run in in either of the cups or even winning them would do a lot to the players.And i agree we are just too adamant to carry on with same formations again and again which has made us predictable.I am a Bayern fan(Bundesliga) as well as a hardcore gooner.So i can spot the similarities in a lot of ways.We need to make sure of winning the next 3 home games against Shrewsbury,Bolton and Olympiakos.Once we start winning the confidence shall slowly return and after the international break we can expect Vermaelen and Diaby back which would give us a better balance.Hoping for a crucial ten days and with optimism.I trust the team and the boss.Lets support the team and make sure we make Emirates a living hell for the opposition.
    Come on Gooners!!

  44. I fear that perhaps Wenger is no longer the man to take the club forward. He is fast becoming what Rafael Benitez became at liverpool: stale.

    He can’t motivate the team enough. He cant change the culture. He can’t change the attitude. He can’t change the discipline. He can’t change the tactics. He cant change the defensive organisation. He can’t motivate the players. He can’t get the best out of them. Do the players still believe in him? Considering we have changed several players but the weaknesses are still the same, is it not worth arguing that a change of coaching staff is required? The squad we have is very good, contrary to what most people think. The problem is application and organisation. That’s where a change of coach might help.

    By all means, let’s give Wenger time to turn things around. But personally I have no hope that much will change. It’s sad, but this may be the beginning of the end for Arsenal’s greatest manager.

  45. As mentioned to in my previous posts on this thread regarding defence and zonal marking..

    it is my opinion that the zonal marking for example led to Akubu’s ‘offside’ goal… Three BB players unmarked in the box from a set piece. One of these whipped it in for Yakubu to poke it in. The shot coming in in the first place was, again IMO, the weakness and the problem. If you only focus’s on the injustice of the offside goal and fails to see the action that led to that goal, (and the others), then you fail to see the full picture.

    I don’t like to read the words.. the Mirror understands….I’m much more comfortable with direct quotes from players that at least we can interpret clearly rather than the sensational headlines sub-editors like to put on it..

    However, It seems to be becoming a popular opinion regarding the remedy for the defensive shortcomings. I wonder how much speed it will gather?

  46. Not suprised. I’m not shocked/surprised in the slighest that this side is capable of producing another defensive nightmare that see’s us lose 4-3 at Blackburn.

    Puts things into perspective. Maybe the aboslutle battering United dished out wasn’t an anomaly, rather a fair representation of where we stand as a football club?

    The positive in all of this? I’m delighted at the prospect of getting my season ticket next year.

    Gazidis will take notice of every game going on general sale, bums on seats maxing 55,000, poor results, and murmurings of protests.

    Sadly for the Arsenal front office, thier commercial development and revenue streams are so piss poor the entire self sustaining model is centred on charging fans ridiculous prices, and squeezing into the Champs League every year.

    We have been far to risk averse.

  47. Well done Satish. We often say on this side of Africa that “you can’t live in a house half built”, and 70% of building is the foundation. The meaning is that you don’t see the work already achieved (foundation) until the building (re-building in our case) is 95% done; then results come. I saw enough on Saturday to convince of the work being done.

    For all sorts of reasons, including these, it’s premature to worry. Otherwise YW’s comments are good. So are AW’s. Two things in addition: a good introduction to what “up north” means to new guys, especially Santos, Per and 3Gs; and a lesson for them all. Secondly, statistics boffs, even with our erratic defensive work yesterday, how often does a team score 2 own goals, on average, in one game in EPL. Anybody?

    Is OGs our highest scorer this season(with Pool)? Is that 3 so far?

  48. a good introduction to what “up north” means to new guys


    why do we have to get beaten by the worst team in the league, defend like amateuers, and throw away another lead at the first sign of pressure to introduce players to the north?

    The fact you accept getting beaten so by Blackburn as a great learning curve for the new recruits just amazes me.

    Zim, do you know we have taken 33 points from our last 26 league games.

    Let that sink in.

  49. Look on the bright side Zim. If you are going to have a season rebuilding your team, let it be when one side looks like they will truly dominate and Manu-re do look unstoppable this title challenge. Let the warning go out though, they are truly laying down a new standard for the Premiere League and yet they still probably will still not beat Barca.

    There are big hurdles ahead and we have a long way to go, that is not to say that there is any manager out there that could actually do a better job of surmounting the problems, or an amount of money either. The die is cast and it just may be another five year plan for anyone.

  50. Stoke scored two own goals yesterday Zim paul. Getting quite popular actually. I couldnt agree more with your analysis though. Everything good and bad about the teams performance showed that this is work in progress. No one wants to see their team taking a beating. The most important thing that was evident was the desire and effort of the team in the last 20 minutes. It was too late by then but an improvement from the OT result where heads dropped and we allowed ourselves to be humiliated. United are the team to beat but wont be able to sustain that level of performance all season. Every team peaks and dips.

    Unfortunately Wenger is an easy target, he talks to the press and is french. Can someone tell me what are the board doing to help him? At utd, liverpool and to some extent newcastle the fans have voted with their feet and laid the blame equally on the board who have just as much responsibility but all the doomers blame Wenger. Noone knows whats going on behind closed doors. But from the outside looking in it is not looking good. Wenger needs help and to see him broken in this way is just not on. The question remaining is when are the board going to tell us the truth about what happend to the 60million for nasrigas and other players sold. Just to rub it in cesc is in the form of his life in a resurgent Barca. To the untrained eye it looks like he really was being ‘stiffled’at Arsenal though what is closer to the truth is that when surrounded by quality his own qualities are accentuated. Wenger needs the fans to believe in him even more. He deserves every chance to prove the critics wrong. Surely we can only get better. Next stop Tottenham and a reunion with Ade. Sorry for the rant.

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