Here’s The Banjo, The Cow And It’s Arsenal – Someone Please Fill In The Blanks

Arsenal 0 – 0 Fulham

It was little surprise that this game ended goalless. The most striking feature of 2009 thus far, has been the inability of the squad to build upon strong performances in a previous game. Whilst it is commendable that a run of fifteen games has been built since the defeat in Porto, there can be no argument that too many of those games have been drawn.

Even more, the gap to fourth place is now wider than it was when the run began in December 2008. In terms of outcome, more points would have been gained had the team won three and lost four of the seven Premier League games that ended drawn. Yet, had that been the case, criticisms would have been made of the failure to turn the defeats into draws. A no-win situation, literally and metaphorically-speaking.

Despite this, the longer term view needs to be looked at. Unfortunately, that view cannot be taken until May when the final standings are known. The season has been a turbulent mix of the good, the bad and the ugly; inconsistency the byword. Eleven games remain. Assuming that Villa win this afternoon, Wenger will know in five games whether or not fourth place is achievable or not. There is no point in saying that Villa have to go to Anfield or Old Trafford; so do we (albeit the United game is later in the season) and we have to win those games. He will also be sneaking a peek over his shoulder as Everton refuse to succumb to their usual inconsistency at this point in the season and remain in contention for fifth place.

Prior to the match, Arsene sought to deflect pressure from the forward line. He did so by swapping things around, removing Bendtner from the starting line-up and bringing Vela to the left. Creatively, it brought more to the ‘party’ but that was not the problem beforehand; finishing was and playing van Persie as a lead striker does not bring the best out of the Dutchman.

He did his best to disprove that theory. No-one can fault his effort; more luck or six inches left, right, lower and he would have had a hat-trick, or at the least the single goal which would have made the world of difference to the result. It was not to be, a combination of Schwarzer and the woodwork denying him. Other than Diaby, no-one else came particularly close, for the most part any stops made by the Fulham custodian were comfortable.

The midfield with Diaby in it is more dynamic than the Song / Denilson partnership. Yesterday, the ‘Double Diamond’ prompted well but in the latter stages, failed to pressurise Fulham as much as they should have – possession was surrendered at that stage by the visitors willingly when they were closed down eventually. Of the creative players, it was a mixed bag. Arshavin’s passing is sublime at times but his shooting is the opposite end of the spectrum as he seeks to regain match sharpness whilst Nasri and Vela both flitted in and out of the game.

There were, of course, plus points to be had. A fifth consecutive game with a clean sheet bodes well for the two knockout tournaments that the club remain involved in. Either can be won with clean sheets, Arsenal capable of nicking the goal required to progress if the defence holds firm. Fulham deserve credit yesterday; they made the back four work by refusing to park the proverbial bus in front of goal and were willing to push forward. That Almunia had perhaps one save to make all afternoon shows their profligacy matched that of Arsenal.

Luck plays a huge part in seasons, be it injuries, refereeing decisions or the woodwork. It is eluding Arsenal in two of those areas right now but may well return quickly. It has to; West Brom is a crucial game. With Villa at Manchester City, the possibility exists to claw back the points dropped in the chase for fourth. Wenger noted that Walcott, Adebayor and Eduardo will all be back in the next fortnight and hinted that it will be in that order. An injection of something new into the side may be the crucial difference between the Champions or Europa League next season.

Finally, not sure if anyone used the ATVO online coverage but if you did, the producers are asking for your feedback so please leave a comment about it. That is, after you’ve had your moan about the match!

‘til Tomorrow.

288 thoughts on “Here’s The Banjo, The Cow And It’s Arsenal – Someone Please Fill In The Blanks

  1. Maybe you are right BGL, maybe if we appointed ‘Arry, that would help. Then we could sign Keene, Bentley, Chimbonda, Defoe and Downing and be a contender again.

    It might be a bitter pill to swallow but if it helps a fellow fan recover from years of underachievement under that loser wenger, then it’s worth a try.

  2. Yes..G4E – a f-ck off should do the trick, but would rather not have to write his ghastly name.

    Consols; ever since Yogi moderated me for saying cr@p, am more aware.

    Right, last of the sherry amongst the mellow people.. that tw@t made me angrier than Howard ever could…
    Chillin’….

    And, just to keep it cool…
    “Everywhere we go-o
    We get slandered – libelled ;
    Here words i never heard in the bible….”

  3. I think we will win at WBA, its long overdue.

    I love CL but Europa cup would not be a disaster.

    Nevertheless, the faith must continue.

    We are in this long dark tunnel and there is a glimpse of some light at the end. Unfortunately it is usually closer the end, that many lose the faith.

    I love our away games…..i have so much more faith that we can win, except at Boro

  4. The result was disapointing to say the least, yet the starting 11 wouldve been the one Id hoped to see, yet, the goal never happened.

    But can you imagine how we’d feel letting a 2 goal lead slip? Loads worse IMO. Thank youn Stoke!!!

    I was more pissed off with the attitude of the ‘fans’ around me. As if singing is something to be sneered At! They sat there in stoney effin silence and the only noise they made was booing at the final whistle. I spose we should be thankful they lasted out til then and didnt boo before that! Wankers!

  5. Passenal : Have to disagree… site should be sight..

    D’oh! See I told you it would happen!

  6. Plastic Mac –
    Did happen, against the spuds…and remember the vitriol after that game ?
    Wonder if the Villains will take up boo-ing ?

  7. Lets get this straight shall we. people who boo and moan and get on players backs at the ground are not good fans. but people who post true but negative comments about the team are not the same. At the moment our team is playing poorly and it is normal for people to talk about it. F*ck injuries the team we put out against fulham should have won so why get pissed when people point this out.

    We have all seen fever Pitch..no one could say that he wasnt a true fan and he was as pessimistic as you can get. but you know what.. he is a typical Fan.

  8. Just a quick question:

    Is it just me or did Sagna look out of gas on Saturday? I’m worried, although I believe Eboue is a very capable deputy..

  9. Missus is out of town…But Im high…and want to fling myself….I might as well run nude like De niro in The deer huner….hahaha

  10. Paulie; So, were you one of those 40000 wankers then? I doubt it, coz I seriously doubt you even go to games, you are serial blog doom monger and a shite cut copy and paste one and that. At least some add a bit of humour to their bile, you are just full of it, you’re the fucking loser, you sad inadequate..

    Right now, the team needs the supporters to get behind the team, regardless of wht we think of some of the players, I aint too enamoured by a few in the squad, but what the fuck is booing em gonna do? Coz that shit is really gonna help innit?

    We have got all effin summer to slate the manager, team, board, tea lady, if you feel the need, but fuck me! We might even have won a bleedin cup by then! Bet that’ll really stick in your throat.

    I support the club, regardless who plays for us, or manages us and IO definitely dont support a growing number of our so called shite home support… Cant wait for the next away game so I can sing up and not feel like Im doing something effin wrong.

  11. Well, PZ, actually am a Hindu… But of all branches of Islam, find Sufism the most attractive.

  12. DG,

    Back in 1989 they didn’t have the internet – well they did, but there weren’t Arsenal blogs. Just like this financial crisis is believed to be worse because of modern communication spreading the gloom, the problem Arsenal has with fans is exacerbated because sphincters like Paulie can’t help but drop payloads of festering turd on internet forums when things are not going well. It adds to a general atmosphere of negativity and it brings the team down. All this when the team needs optimistic support more than ever.

  13. G4E makes you wonder, which is better 0-0 or 3-3? Not conceding is important and we have only scored 8 goals less than man u.

  14. Plastic Mac,

    That’s exactly how I see it. You support the team like mad. You let the season play out. If we end up with nothing, then you can go crazy when the season is over.

    I think it’s insane to undermine the team during the season.

    And I am curious. Does anyone remember a team being under pressure from media and fans for as long as this team has been. Since October, every Arsenal game has been treated as some kind of title decider.

    4 months later the team is still swimming against the current.

  15. Inter Milan look a poor team to me. I hope they beat the mancs. That way they eliminate an actual contender, they not being contenders themselves.

  16. I definitely take not conceding Passenal, because then at least you have the confidence that you will not lose. The goals will come because we are creating the chances.

  17. Ponyboy; Please dont remind me of the spud game fella! Took me weeks to get over that. My point about letting a 2 goal lead slip was a refernce to what Villa did today! (I think they let a 2 goal lead slip anyway)

  18. OG – totally agree… have a sneaky fear the Mancs might just get the quadruple.. please no!!

  19. ToughCookie… It’s no more than we deserve. Went on a wooden rollercoaster once, and felt sick for hours… sometimes this season has ben like that. Thanks for the mainline positivity !!

  20. Plastic. Weren’t you on here a day or so ago moaning?

    Duke. Being a pessimist in those days was different.

    First, there was no readily available means of spreading gloom like there is today. Second, it was a joke amongst friends. Third, we were pretty ordinary and had been for some time.
    Fourth, you have been moaning for as long as you have been posting.

    Oh. and fifth, it was a work of fiction.

  21. Consols;

    What the f**k has that got to do with anything? I was expressing my opinion on Eboue, a player i DONT RATE

  22. Tough Cookie… now everyone’s going to fall in love with you!

    k – headache kicking in… fantasies to fantasise about.

  23. oR THEN EITHER! Bloomin caps lock.

    I dont rate Eboue, but have never booed him or any player for that matter. but I dont get what you are getting at? So, I cant support my team and not rate a player?

    Or are you the yang to Paulie’s Ying? Where everything is super dooper and anyone who even dares to critique or express their own opinion is lambasted and given grief?

  24. Bob; I know you didnt give me stick, but in my reply I was referring to the shit I got yesterday for daring to show my feelings about Eboue.

  25. Blimey, bit sensitive aren’t we Plastic? Methinks thou dost protest too much.

    Like I said to someone earlier, it’s not personal with me. I just like to back our team all the time.

    I am one of those who like Eboue too.

    I like TC too, but she is absolutely shameless.

  26. Anyone watching MotD2?? The hilariously OTT commentary of that clown Pearce, goin on and on and on with himself about how Villa were gonna get CL football when Carew scored the 2nd goal!!! Hahahaha! Brilliant… And Villa letting a 2 goal lead slip like that will rwally fuck their confidence.

    Oh and the Villa ‘fans’ booed their tream off too! Haha!

  27. She’s got you on a string Pz. Be very careful.

    “I’m Okay now, just still feeling a bit weak..”

    That girl is something else.

  28. Bob; Like I said, it was more a response to the shite I got yesterday, I have no idesa what the ‘doth protest’ comment is about?

  29. he bullshit of Hansen & co. Making excuses for Villa and saying what a magnificant season they are having…yadda yadda… Yep, go out of the Uefa cup and FA cup and at a crucial time of the season drop 2 points and let a 2 goal lead slip…

  30. Bit of Shakespeare, Plastic. I was just suggesting that your sensitivity tended to suggest that you had perhaps been of the moaning persuasion.

    If you are not, and you have not sounded that way to me tonight, then try not to jump down people’s throats when they ask a question.

    I the best of all possible worlds we are all Arsenal on this site.

    ARSENAL! ARSENAL! ARSENAL!

  31. Bob; I may be a sensitive soul fella. And I tend to jump in without thinking. Ive been upand down this season due to indifferent results, coupled with an ultra negative media and the crap support we’ve had this year.

    I know we are sposed to be all Gooners here, but I find it difficult to relate to some.

  32. Bentley has really shown what a quality player he si aint he? Sooooo glad we got rid, and to think we’ve made about £8m and the spuds had to give us a large chunk of that!

  33. So the Villa fans booed their team off aswell..have they now got the worst fans or is it still us??

  34. Haha! Yeah, but I doub the media will even mention it.

    I seriously think they have fucked it. BUT we have to start winning our games, starting with WBA!

  35. Thats what happens when some spoiled brats gets to the top 4 even for 5 minutes they boo their players. Pressure is on A.Villa to hold on to that spot and the question is can they handle it ?
    I heard there was a final at Wembley today. Who won it Coventry? I don’t need an answer its a bit of sarcasm.I just can’t stand the carling cup its a very annoying competition.

  36. Did ya a huge favour, we reckon . Now go get that 4th spot you louts. You deserve it for the football you play. Cheers lads.

  37. I find it funny but it seems to me that Jay Simpson is the player Arsenal could do with at the moment. He’s not a flair player but with the kind of midfield we have he could be doing for us what Ian Wright did years ago. I bet that in the last ten games given the sort of delivery the other players make Jay Simpson would have averaged one goal in every two games.

  38. Late again … been off line since Sunday. And I wanted to say Frank I know how you feel and I share your utter dismay at the booing of the team. Do not give up my brother, OK. NOW IS NOT THE TIME.

    Secondly, the difference between 0-0 and 1-0 is about point zero of a milli-something. How easily the last 4 draws could have been 1-0, all of them! Do we miss Dudu and Ade, Cesc and Rosicky, sure we do. Does it hurt, sure it does.

    Get over it!!

    On Saturday we had 4 clear chances and we continue to make clear chances. Did you guys see that the 2 passes that might have been RvP goals came from … Arshavin. The guy is magic! He is the assassin.

    Are we still in with a real chance of two cups and 4th or 3rd in the PL? Sure we are. Do we really have our 5 world class players, including 2 strikers, 2 wide players, and the best midfielder in the world returning from injury in a few weeks. Sure we do.

    Did Totts lose, tee-hee. Sure they did. Come on you Gunners and Gooners!!! Come on Frank!!

    Did Villa draw? Sure they did.

    Is Howard a crass blankhole? Sure he is, along with a couple of thousand idiots who give this team a bad name (not the other way round).

    Keep it real, guys and gals, keep it real.

    AFRICA LOVES THE GUNNERS!!

  39. zimpaul… am with you thanks for keeping the African flag flying high.

    I live in Nigeria so easily share your sentiments.

    I hope the “good guys” will not abandon the team to the “bad guys” and will be there to cheer them to counter the booing!

  40. what baffles me is the rle the gunners think their booing is going to archeive; rather than back the team till the end of the season and see how it pans out.

    why do gunners rather believe it is only arsenal that can drop points and no one else?

    As far as it is mathematically possible, I back the team to finish in the highest position, which is 1at for now. the league does not end on 27 games!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    so villa ended up drawing yesterday, was it usual for villa to drop a 2-goal advantage? but they did because if football, anything can happen like Liverpool losing to boro… am sure if any gunner had predicted that before it happened, he would have been booed and abused and all else.

    There is nothing wrong with the midfield are they ones not converting chances? So leave eboue, denilson, diaby and co alone

  41. Too right Team Spirit …
    Eboue is just fine, Diaby is cool, Denilson is magic and I like Song a lot too, these guys are still 20/21 years old (except Eboue) and Denilson and Song have held the team together this season with almost all the flair players missing. 15 games unbeaten.

  42. …I have not given up, Zimpaul…I would have thought that was obvious…beautiful day in London today…a great day to be a real Arsenal supporter….now is the time to keep our nerve and stand behind the team…actually for many of us that time was a long time ago…but it is not too late for some to start….

    …I know a lot about the Baggies so I am looking forward to tomorrow evening….wiithout the burden of home support….I think the team will do very, very well…no doubt loads of ‘gooners’ will want to put the boot in to the team today and tomorrow…who needs the Daily Mail when you have Arsenal blogsites….pathetic…

  43. ZimPaul,

    Dude, very nice thoughts, but heres the reality,

    Eboue – Terrible

    Diaby – Could be good if he stayed injury free and worked very very hard.

    Denilson – Painfully average

    Song – Shite

    Thats the Troof

  44. Oh no, Arse 21, you seem to like this site and no one can understand why. I think deep down you love Arsenal. OK. When it all comes down you’ll be singing praises to Denilson and Song. I know this will be true and we’ll have a laugh about it. I won’t hold it against you. In the meantime take a deep breath.

  45. In the words of Arsebloger today “look at what’s happened in Spain. Barcelona were walking away with the league. They were unstoppable, playing brilliant football, and had opened up a 12 point lead over Real Madrid. Just a couple of weeks later that gap is now just 4 points and anything can happen from there”

    We sure can do it.

    Sending all the positive vibes here from Pakistan.

    Up the Guns!

  46. yeah greetings from Nigeria to Pakistan too. well done there.

    Frank and the gang (is that a musical band? LOL) keep the gunner positives flags on the home front flying guys

  47. I was at the game on Sat, the team were SO SO bad.

    Nasri had his monkey head on.

    Arshavin looks qualty though.

  48. TEAM SPIRIT,

    I’ve written a song –

    Wrong, Wrong
    Everything is Wrong, Wrong,

    Wrong, Wrong
    Everything is Wrong, Wrong,

    Wrong, Wrong
    Everything is Wrong, Wrong,

    Wrong, Wrong
    Everything is Wrong, Wrong

  49. …………… G…..o…o….d……………..m….o…r….n….i….n…g………..F…..r…..a…..n…..k

  50. …and in 19 days , all the doubters will become “believers “again and AW their God!

    I beg thee
    Re-attach your nutsacks
    Kill the booing
    It’s crunch time now.
    Support is crucial

    A-R-S-E-N-A-L!!!!!!!!!!!

  51. Arse21 you are late for school…

    Our midfield are fine…. our fowards need to start shooting

  52. Look I truly believe that AW knows he’s made some mistakes, but being an American Gooner since 1979 I believe he should be given the benefit of the doubt. I know he wants his youngsters too shine through, and I believe they will, maybe not all of them like Bendtner or Denilson, but ‘ya never know do you. I’m sick of the AW haters on these boards, and how quick do we forget the past 12 years under AW, would you rather have GG back?? I for one wouldn’t and I believe none of you would either. So lets pull our pants up and tighten in the ropes and get on with the next 11 games, Villa WILL stumble and Cesc and the gang will previal in the CL spots, ‘ya gotta believe people. Oh and Charlie George is the man, gotta love the George meister!!
    Ohhh Ahhh

  53. everyone tals here about our 15 or so games unbeaten run but this is not wat we expected sometimes i chose to be beaten by spurs 3 weeks ago, liverpool a few months back. but despite our loss if we had managed to grind the victory against sunderland and fulham and then westham we have been just 2 points behind villa at this moment.
    but i still have hope still think we can do it

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