5pur2 Leave The Emirates With Nothing. Again.

Arsenal 5 – 2 Tottenham Hotspur

0 – 1 Adebayor (10)
1 – 1 Mertesacker (23)
2 – 1 Podolski (42)
3 – 1 Giroud (45)
4 – 1 Cazorla (60)
4 – 2 Bale (71)
5 – 2 Walcott (90)

(18) Adebayor quite rightly sent off

Lightning never strikes twice apparently but history does repeat itself. 5 – 2 against ten men Tottenham, the only difference being that the sending off of Adebayor yesterday probably had more of an impact than Scott Parker’s dismissal in last season’s corresponding fixture. Whether it was the reason for Tottenham’s defeat is a moot point; you cannot prove the argument either way. Certainly in that opening spell, the visitors were the better side and had taken an early lead through the former Arsenal man. By the time his sky in north London turned red, Arsenal were beginning to show signs of waking from their slumber. Who knows how the match would turned out with eleven-a-side? Who cares? I don’t.

There can be no arguments about the dismissal. It was a crude challenge, late with both feet off the ground, studs up. When the culprit’s manager refuses to condemn the referee, you know it was the right decision. That said, Villas-Boas believe Tottenham controlled the match, a point lost on Arsène Wenger,

If our opponents are in control from the first to the last minutes and we win 5-2, then I don’t mind too much.

The outcome was rarely in doubt once Per Mertesacker equalised midway through the first half. That’s not to say it was entirely comfortable with wobbles coming to the fore at the time Gareth Bale reduced the deficit to 4 – 2. It might have closer had he not snatched at an earlier shot, it might have been more had Theo Walcott’s control been better. To expect a team which has been faltering to immediately dominate a match is as unrealistic as denying that there were weaknesses in the performance still, nervousness. Of course there is and I would expect those nerves to be there for another few games, if not longer but surely beating Tottenham is enjoyable? If not, why bother with football?

Much of whether this is sustained will depend on the results. Three unbeaten is a good foundation; the performances will come, just keep the wins flowing. Get the confidence back, problems can be dealt with quietly, efficiently, away from the public eye. So long as the wins keep coming. That’s another day, I’m still enjoying the win yesterday.

Man of the Match was given to the eye-catching performance of Santi Cazorla, it could have easily gone to Olivier Giroud. The Spaniard was in an impish mood, switching to wider areas leaving Jack Wilshere to bring his spikey content to the middle of the pitch. Not that it was entirely evident at the start with Gallas denied his revenge by a linesman’s flag before Defoe broke the offside trap and saw his parried shot fall to the feet of Adebayor. It was a horrible goal to concede, Mertesacker woefully out of position leaving two opponents unmarked and in space. Perhaps the red card was the mischievous sense of humour from the Football Gods, irked by Adebayor celebrating in front of the home fans. Lennon might have doubled the lead shortly afterwards; this wasn’t going to plan.

With Adebayor gone, Arsenal exploited the space. Crisp passing stretched their opponents, pulling them out of position. The key to the equaliser was patience and Theo Walcott. The contract rebel’s cross found Mertesacker attacking the ball, the Tottenham defence stunned at a cross coming into their area from an Arsenal player. The German made amends for his earlier mistake with a firm header into the corner, a salmon-like leap to meet the ball. If you can have a 6′ 7″ salmon. A German double was ensured when Podolski scored via Gallas’ heel. It’s always nice for former players to come to The Emirates and relive the joy of scoring for the Arsenal…

Cazorla had threatened from distance, Giroud twice from closer range but it was not until three minutes before the interval that the duo combined to put Arsenal firmly in control. The Spaniard was tripped, stumbled as a result, scrambled to his feet, tore around the back of the defence and slid a pass into the Frenchman’s sprawling path. The finish was inevitable, Giroud is mocking his critics with regularity.

A comfortable lead established, Arsenal patiently sought more damage in the second half, in the process ceding territory to Tottenham. As time moved on, the visitors became more stretched, resorting to long clearances which merely served to return the ball to Arsenal. Inevitably, the fourth goal came with Cazorla receiving his due reward, slotting home following a surging Podolski run.

If that was the signal for an Arsenal onslaught, no-one had given the team semaphore lessons. Tottenham were allowed back into it. Bale had a long run unchallenged, panic ensued from a corner before the Simian midfielder ran into the space vacated by the Arsenal defence and shot across Szczesny into the bottom corner. Costello defending was spreading through the team but the lapses were rendered irrelevant in the last minute as Theo Walcott scored the fifth, Lloris distracted by what appeared to be a caterpillar crawling across the England international’s top lip. He later realised that Walcott was participating in Movember, preparing for next year’s campaign in advance.

Three welcomed points set the weekend nicely and put a more cheerful face on the Arsenal world, a win in the NLD always does that. Whether it is a mask or giving facial muscles a rest remains to be seen.

’til Tomorrow.

233 thoughts on “5pur2 Leave The Emirates With Nothing. Again.

  1. Agree LSG – it’s more tiresome because a few fail to appreicate and accept that there is middle ground.

    Extremists operate in extremes – like pandas doing binary maths whilst wearing monochrome spectacles.

    As they say –
    “There are only 10 types of people in the world. Those that understand binary and those that don’t”

  2. I think we need Messi.
    We have a chance to win .But its less of a chance than the other 3 possible winners.No matter how much of our money we spend or how much debt we go into.
    That is likely because no one has ever done it in the Premiership.NEVER EVER NOT EVEN ONCE.

  3. That sounds like a piece or two there, Blog Chairman. Just remember I’m off the grid for a week soon 😉

  4. ooohhh i love it when you talk dirty, jonny 🙂

    i think we need messi as well, george.. might be possible if guardiola was manager 🙂

  5. Did anybody wonder if Peter Herbert would complain to the Metropolitan Police about the racial abuse Mertesacker received from the Arsenal fans after he scored his goal?

  6. Yes Henristic I do say.
    Yet people seem to think that is either not the case or me being defeatist.
    Oh ,and you can fuck off as well BTW.

  7. Good night Jonny……you cunt!

    Hey, I’ve forgotten how good it feels to call someone a cunt!

    Ah, ACLF has all sorts of benefits for me…

  8. Happy enough to say you not worth the money. Dawn is going to arrive in that boy’s head and he will left to scrabble with thorny reality.

  9. Happy enough to say you not worth the money. Dawn is going to arrive in that boy’s head and he will left to scrabble with thorny reality.

  10. Smnoe interesating discussion on what was a superb result. The sending off was of course a tunring point, but we really did press our advantage home very well. We had a small spell in the 2nd half where we seemed to be attemptoing to make things difficult for ourselves, but then things are never easy with us eh? 5 Different scoers and all good goals in differing ways. The two goals conceeded were very soft though and bad defending.

    I said in the summer that I thought we needed a another left back, and I have seen nothing to change my mind on that. Santos is an erratic defender and Gibbs is always injured. I actually like both, but in my mind a team at our level should have better.

  11. I am interested that (almost) invariably whenever we concede a goal it is down to poor defending. No team ever apparently scores a good quality well worked goal against us and we never encounter a dash of individual quality from an opposition player that confounds even our best efforts.

    I raise the point because IMO Bale’s goal was very good, excellent acceleration to bring him to the edge of the box, good control of the ball, not the most powerful but an accurate shot in the bottom corner, and a bit of luck to get it through Kosc’s legs

    I just don’t see that as poor defending – I see it as good attacking

  12. anicoll – You don’t think it is bad defending that the Spuds most dangerous player was stood in acres of space 30 yards or so away from our goal, and that he didn’t have to avoid one challenge (because nobody was close enough to him) before he scored?

    Hmmm, I do.

    The point is that many of the gaosl we conceed are largely avoidable. We too often contribute to our goals against column by really bad basic errors.

  13. Well as a matter of fact I don’t Andy. The speed Bale moved over the ground with the ball under close control would have sprung any defence, and his accurate shot at the end of it, as the defenders converged on him was top top quality, as Arry would say.

    It may be coincidence but Spuds fans say at least three of our goals were down to shite defending, Gallas being the main offender but Lloris being at fault too.

    football fans eh

  14. Ancil – “Well as a matter of fact I don’t Andy

    Really? I am glad you are not on our coaching staff then 😉

    We will have to agree to disagree on that one then.

  15. a combination of both your points, Andy & anicoll5 BUT as PG has pointed out enough times Andy, most goals are conceded as a result of bad defending.

    as an athlete, Gareth Bale is on another level.
    It’d take more focused defending to stop a player like that for 90 minutes.

    apparently, they say AW said he ain’t selling Theo in january wether or not he re-signs.
    pretty good news if it happens.
    I expect most gooners to gobble up on this news.

  16. I think we will – like most goals in theory “something” might have been done differently by the defenders. Sometimes I think you have to doff your cap to a good goal.

    Every time I watch Diego slalom round the English in Mexico in 86 I reflect on the rubbish defending 🙂

    Purple – I read the alleged “we wont sell him” re Theo – I read the same about Nasri and Robin – in my opinion it is utter bollox

  17. I do accept that you could put the majority of goals down to “bad defending” in some way shape or form. I suppose my point is that quite often we seem to get the basics wrong. Sometimes other teams don’t need to do that much to score against us.

    The amount of space Bale had was simply down to bad team shape. We had an extra man; why was their biggest goal threat stood in so much space with nobody near him. Why did nobody close him down sooner? If Bale had to turn his man to “get at” our back four, you would hold up your hands and say well done. But he didn’t. He picked the ball up upopposed, ran unchallenged at the back four and let off a decent shot. And when that went in I doubt their was an Arsenal fan (and some of the players) that didn’t hold their breath.

    It may seem picky, but this is the type of play which is holding us back IMO.

  18. Bale’s goal was very well taken but there is no doubt it was defended lackadaisically – as Andy alludes no one closed him down. Please lets not start comparing monkey boy to Maradonna.

    I read this morning that The Arsenal have committed more individual errors than any other team in the Premier League since the start of last season. If this is correct that makes for rather unpleasant reading – how does one reduce those? I guess it’s down to ‘collective confidence’.

    Back to basics..?

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