Arsenal Weather Forecast: Black, White & Gloom All Over

Arsenal 0 – 1 Newcastle United

0 – 1 Carroll (45)

A morning of brumal conditions seems somewhat appropriate following the flaccidity of yesterday’s Arsenal performance. For the second time this season, a newly promoted side has come to The Emirates to frustrate and succeeded in opening the scoring. Like West Bromwich Albion before them, Newcastle left with the three points. In keeping with their nickname, The Magpies stole the points unlike Albion who played enterprisingly to take advantage of their slovenly hosts.

The goal was avoidable, a goalkeeping error compounding the defensive slackness beforehand. Yet whereas previous similar situations had seen an encampment of the opponents penalty areas, a blockade that French lorry drivers would be proud; there was none of this on Sunday. Indeed, Newcastle would have been pleased with the ease that they controlled the final stages even drawing a deserved red card for Koscielny, Squillaci too far across to be able definitively described as the last man.

Several key players were below par, notably Cesc Fabregas who appeared to be struggling with the after-effects of his hamstring injury. Whilst the captain has at times seemed to have talismanic tendencies, like Henry before him rescuing stifled collective performances, his impaired mobility assisted a Newcastle midfield that was intent on pressuring the man on the ball from the outset.

Having been willing trade blows initially, Newcastle were forced back into their own half as Arsenal asserted themselves. The closest to an Arsenal goal in the first half was Fabregas, his thirty yard free kick deflected onto the crossbar by the Newcastle wall, a rarity that the defensive barrier held firm in the modern game.

Fabregas and Koscielny would find their route to goal blocked by defenders as they sought to find the Arsenal shooting boots. Minutes before half-time, Nasri snapped an effort which seemed to be heading into the net, Krul producing a fine save to maintain parity. For all of the deserved criticism for his timewasting antics, the Dutchman proved the match of anything Arsenal threw at him during the ninety minutes. When he was beaten, the woodwork came to his rescue. On such things are wins away from home built.

The deadlock was broken as the interval beckoned. A debatable free kick was awarded when Sagna was determined to have fouled Gutierrez. Barton lofted the set play into the area, Chamakh stopped tracking Carroll and the Newcastle centre forward rose to head the ball into the net as Fabianski came, saw and dithered. Underneath all this Koscielny did not attempt to jump, unsure as to whether or not he would impede his goalkeeper’s attempt to get the ball.

The mistake is being used as evidence that the Pole is back in old ways, too harsh and critical when there was general hesitancy ahead of him. I would suggest that this is the reason he stuttered. Crucially no-one covered him on the line as he came to meet the cross, an error by the defence and in those circumstances, retreating to his line was probably the Pole’s better option, easy to say from the comfort of the stands, comfort which made the support lacrimose for the match.

As the second half commenced, it seemed that the missing urgency was manifesting in the Arsenal attack, culminating in Walcott rattling the crossbar with Krul well beaten. It proved to be a false dawn; the lethargy of the first half returned as the creativity that we expect became noticeable in its absence.

Wenger then made his substitutions which are not entirely understandable. Nasri was withdrawn due to injury and replaced by Arshavin (understandable) whilst the ineffective Chamakh was replaced by van Persie (bemusing). For all the relief / joy that van Persie’s return brings, it was a curious choice with Bendtner a more natural replacement, the only explanation that Wenger felt Arsenal were too predictable and allowing the visitor’s defence too comfortable an afternoon aerially.

Wenger compounded the situation by withdrawing Wilshere for Bendtner, essentially moving to a more orthodox four-pronged attack. The youngster had been arguably the most effective midfielder, removing Fabregas may have been more productive with his temperament brimming with evident frustration. The changes made no difference to the eventual outcome nor threatened to do so save for a Fabregas header following an Arshavin slalom on the left.

With a tough week ahead, Wenger has some mental repair work to shake the cobwebs from Arsenal players minds. Arshavin noted post-match that it had been a bad week and that this happens in football. Chelsea’s failure to take any points from Anfield means that those dropped at home have, at this moment in time, not proved costly, maintaining the gap. However, with Wolves having forced Chelsea and Manchester United in recent weeks to eke out victories rather than sweeping them aside, any complacency at Molineux may be punished.

Those proclaiming an end to the Arsenal title challenge are as premature as shops putting Christmas decorations on display in September. What is apparent though is the necessity to put together a winning run in the Premier League. Wednesday night would be a good time to start.

’til Tomorrow.

200 thoughts on “Arsenal Weather Forecast: Black, White & Gloom All Over

  1. Its a tricky one. How many times has Cesc saved us with a vital through ball, or decisive shot…?? A lot is the answer. I doubt many a manager would have taken him off against Newcastle.

    I was only disappointed in our attacking performance as a team. The substitutes were not a bad choice for me. We needed creativity, who else better to bring on than Van Persie? Rosicky may feel he was more than ready to come on and produce something, but he played 90mins on wednesday, and didn’t do much of real note.

    I have to say I am amazed by the amount of minutes Vela gets. He is such a talent, but has never had a run of games. Stick him on down the left, let him get to the byline, and get some balls into Chamakh and Bendtner or whoever is playing central. We have Theo down the right, but we know Theo loves dribbling and scoring more than crossing. I think Vela can be a real asset down the left with his ability on the ball and crossing.

    Anyway, we have the options. I expect Wenger to shake the lads up for Wednesday and get a real reaction. We can’t let the season go down the pan as we have so much potential.

    Had we won the 2 home games we are expected too, and turned up. We would be top by 1 point now. Those that play down our chances are pretty much blind to our teams quality. Lets support the team, becuause any one with sense knows how close we are to succeess.

  2. CG,

    The most frustrating thing about the last 3 years is watching this team do worse than their ability and often their performances dictate.

    But they have themselves to blame. As you said, if we’d not inexplicably stumbled against W. Brom & Newcastle we’d be tops now

  3. Gadget – Heh, fair one I suppose. I just think that our players don’t seem to give a hoot when we conceed. Sometimes a bit of finger pointing is no bad thing.

    When Clichy got caught out the other week I bet none of the players said a word to him. And you might say that “he knows he has messed up”. Very true, but he does not seem to learn from it. It would be nice to see one of the other players take him to task. Like I said, sometimes it is no bad thing.

  4. Chris – If you play Vela, who misses out? Nasri, AA, Theo?

    I really don’t see him getting much game time barring a spate of injuries to be honest.

    Good result for the reserves. Did Ramsey play?

  5. “Had we won the 2 home games we are expected too, and turned up. We would be top by 1 point now.”
    – ChrisG

    For truth. This is going to be an even more exciting (and potentially frustrating) season than last. As long as the team turn up ready and raring to go, we can do things. Let’s make November better

  6. That is true, but other teams around us could say exactly the same. Either way, I think it will be very close this year.

  7. after yesterdays shambles there’s no way we will get anything from the next 2 games.you can even say the spuds are due a win against us.

  8. All about constructive criticism GA. I’m sure Wenger and the defensive coaches break down every goal we concede and explain the whys and what not to do’s to the players. However, even that can’t stop bad goals from being conceded. Life being lived in the moment, judgement takes over, and you zig when you should have zagged.

    Damn, I miss the Big Breakfast. Anyone remember Zig & Zag? They did some awesome interviews.

  9. Those boycotting fans should stand outside of the stadium with a banner stating their reasons. Then a huge section of supporters should throw rocks and bottles at them.

  10. Gadget – Agree with you there. Adams, Dixon and Co were not adverse to letting each other know if they had messed up though. Most miserly defences have players who will hold their collegues to account if needed. Our nice leaky one does not. God forbid anybody would upset one of our little cherubs.

  11. We could start Cesc on the bench for a few and bring him on if we need to. Give him time to let his leg heal properly. I can’t help but think of the game against Villa last year where he came off the bench and pretty much won the game – magnificence, thy name is Cesc. We have enough quality to be able to do this.

  12. Gadget & Goonerandy, regarding conceding goals, Tommy V was the perfect leader to have on the pitch. Everyone knows how furious & dissapointed he’d be with every goal conceded. We neecd hard workers like him in attacking midfield. We already have KOS, Sagna & Clichy (to some extent) in defence; & Chamakh in attack. But nobody in midefield (bar, probably Rosicky) who takes the responsibilty of tracking men down.
    Also, I am not really happy with Niklas’s work rate since Chamakh arrived, maybe he’s still not fully fit. Or maybe I am just spoilt…

  13. That’s the thing GA, upsetting our little ‘cherubs’ in public (as you so meanly put it), may not have the desired effect. I’m sure Arsene has an idea though.

    But still were we to go the on pitch blasting route, you have questions as to who does the blasting. Would it have been right of Fabby Alpha to blast Fabby Omega (it will catch on goddammit) on Sunday? Should a striker tell a defender how to defend Drogba?

    In any given circumstance, chances are it just wouldn’t be right, especially when the blame in the first instance may be wrongly placed.

  14. There is no love lost between Wenger and the British media. Wenger feels bitter and not appreciated for what he achieved here, whereas the media do not like his mentoring tone.

    And problem is perception. Wenger is perceived as a Frenchman. But he is not French. He is German from Elsass (a German province that happens to belong to France at the moment), and may I say he is a typical German. Hardworking, principled, somewhat uninteresting. That’s not what the media are expecting from a Frenchman. A Frenchman (like Cantona) would make a natural joke about his mistress, and the media would just love it (a bit like Morinho). Instead, you have boring lectures about financial doping. So, the expectations are to have an easy-going witty Frenchman, and instead you have a heavy-handed, phylosophysing German.

    Solution? Wenger should publicly acknowledge he is not what people think he is. He is German, not French.

  15. “Why people are choosing to criticise Fabianski when he made 1 mistake in comparison to Cesc’s 20 misplaced passes is plain stupid.”

    Great comment CG, to blame Fabianski for this loss is laughable. Absolute nonesense.

    People talking about world class keeper. Is that to say that a world class keeper wouldnt or couldnt have made that mistake. I suggest watching the CL match midweek, if not for Fabianski the score wouldve been more that 1-2. Fabianski has been brilliant as good as anyone I have watched lately.

    goonerandy, I believe Vela shouldve been on the bench instead of RVP. Vela was our best player mid week and I believe was the kind a player we needed against Newcastle.

    The team was off, from the managers to the players.

    I dont believe for one sec that this team is not good enough (Naga, Man up). Time to refocus again and Wenger shouldnt play a bunch of injured players or players who just returned from injury.

    What has happened to the players playing reserved matches to get match fit?

    Blessings!

  16. Last year Chelsea had the lowest winning point total for several years and lost more games then any title winner in a long time. Looks like the same thing may happen again. Mid and lower table teams seem to be making up ground on the leading pack. Better and more sophisticated team defending from the whole league has evened the playing field somewhat I suspect. Any other ideas?

  17. “If we’re going to intimidate the opposition then Gunnersaurus should probably be a real dinosaur, or at least a close descendant.”

    Interesting idea, Big Al; but Chelsea already have a whole team of dinosaurs. How could we ever catch up?

  18. MJ,

    I look forward to Terminator V’s (How about Public Enemy’s Terminator X – but with a V – for Tommy, eh?) return, although who will make way for him is anyone’s guess.

    But as for your Bendy comment, I shalln’t stand for it! What’s your game, eh? Chamakh is probably the hardest working striker in the league, if not the world! THE WORLD! I’d imagine only Tevez comes close to work-rate.

  19. Let’s please stop the insults. We lost and we are all pissed off. At the moment we are undergoing group therapy. We’ll all be behind the team come Wednesday. So let it all out without getting personal. And where’s Darius and Zimpaul? (forgive my kenglish!)

  20. Yes and the silly long balls were so blasted annoying. Instead of attacking the wings since Newcastle clogged the center, we just gave them the ball time after time. The worst part about that is that we never have enough people in the box.

    Chamakh, also has a goalscoring opportunity and chose to PASS!

    COME ON ARSENAL!!!

  21. Ole, why do you think this team keeps underperforming, in your view, over the last three years? We often talk about injuries, but this year we have been impressed with the depth of our squad, and the two home losses to recently promoted sides certainly aren’t down to that. We haven’t finished this season, so it isn’t time for that sort of judgment, but we have shown a fragility or lack of concentration (or something) that needs to be corrected if we are to have the sort of season we believe is/was possible.

  22. You’re right PaulN. Not sure if anyone else noticed, in the 2nd half, wehn our fullbacks tried to attack down the flanks,specially on the left.
    Someone used the term ‘lost the plot’, which I totally agree with, there was no fixed formation we played. The second half was one of our worst attacking displays ever.

  23. Damn Paul N. I’d repressed that as it was possibly the singlemost annoying thing about the game for me. Absolute face-palmer! I was expect him to get his laces on to that one and score a beauty, but instead he attempted a pass which didn’t even get to the man. Grrrrrrrr.

    Mind you, Cesc’s pirouette was quite lovely and how I would have applauded if that went in.

  24. I left the 1st para incomplete. I meant, our full backs were compeltely stranded & found nobody in front of them!

  25. Rubbish, utter rubbish. This was one of the worst home performances since, er, WBA. AW said that the lesson had been learnt but it hasn’t. On this evidence this team does not have the mentality to win the Prem or CL. Complacent, error-prone, unfocused, weak, are some of the deficiencies that this team has and until they are rectified we won’t win anything.

    We keep getting told that things are improving – but losing to Chelsea (yet again) and to 2 newly promoted clubs at home without scoring a goal suggests the opposite.

    The players should have refunded the entrance money.

  26. Gadget, I commented Fabregas last night here and mentioned the Villa game. He was magnificent. I think, however, games like that have taken their toll on him–being rushed back. I think he is wary of putting in that extreme effort that risks re-injury or aggravation of his muscle. He popped it running so fast and singlemindedly to score that brilliant second goal to win the game.

    As far as the blame/responsibility issue you’ve discussed with GA, I agree with you but I don’t think that is incompatible with having vocal leadership that rallies everyone together and push players forward–not by blaming but someone who refocuses the team to take collective responsibility for one another. I don’t see that happening as much with this team. That’s why I wonder where the leadership can/will come from. I hope RvP and a bit later Vermaelen can come back into the team flying because their leadership may be very valuable if we are to get through the tough fixtures ahead and climb back into the race.

  27. We have a chance to go 2nd again on Wednesday, as Manure will slip up at Oil city. We HAVE to make it count.
    C’mon Arsenal!

  28. The lack of one signing will cost us the title again.Wenger knew Almunia and Fabianski were not good enough thats why he tried to sign Schwartzer.But when he couldnt get him he had no fall back keeper lined up.So we were stuck with the two keepers he had no faith in.
    The priority in the summer was a top class keeper not Schwartzer.But Wenger just doesnt look on the goalkeeping position as important.A good keeper can earn his team 10-12pts like Seaman and Jens did.Keepers like Almunia and Fabianski will lose you points like they did against WBA and Newcastle.Its a great shame

  29. “The good news is there is no tear on the hamstring, nothing. It’s just a little bit of fluid, but it keeps coming back,” he told the club’s official matchday programme.

    “It’s outside the muscle, the ‘skin’ of the muscle. It’s not really a muscle injury, it’s fluid that keeps coming back and it’s very annoying.

    “We are working on it, looking at my hips because they are always very tight. We have to work on it but also understand that I am 23-years-old and I’ve played many, many games.

    “Soon I will play my 200th Premier League game as well as nearly 60 for the national team and 60 in the Champions League. So that’s a lot of games for my age and I have to take care of myself.”

  30. Its too easy to blame the keeper. Yes he made a mistake but he has done very well this season. Other players played worse than him yesterday.

  31. I have joined others in noting that this is a long season and that we are still in this, providing we can play more consistently and well. However, we also can’t just dismiss the fact that the league is much tighter, not just at the very top where we are third on goal difference trailing by five points to the leaders. The same gap of five points that we believe can yet be bridged separates us from 5 teams including Liverpool and Tottenham, with Newcastle only three behind. Those teams are looking up towards us and probably feeling like there is a chance to close as well. We play Tottenham and two teams just a point or two below them, so this month’s results will be very crucial to our title hopes and make life easier or rather more difficult for us in the minimum of CL places. I’d much prefer the rollercoaster highs and lows of chasing the top than the tense pressures of fighting off challenges from below. Who knows yet what this season has in store for us!

  32. Dang, MJ, I was just considering what you just wrote, and it’s occured to me the Invincible used to huddle after every game. That’s something I’ve not seen it a long time. It would be cool to see something like that not only after every game, but after every goal we concede. That way, as we’d never know what was being discussed in that huddle I reckon we all get the best of both worlds: I’d get my display of team ethic, and if a bollocking is happening, GA’d get that :)!

    I do agree having strong vocal leadership is compatible with everything I’ve stated, but I think you need more than one for occassions when the leader is having a bad game himself.

  33. Limestone:

    In any other team sport if the players are not playing up to their potential it is usually the manager and the tactics that takes most of the blame. Our total dedication to a style of play that has been inconsistent and proven to make it difficult for us to defend is a concern. Bad luck with injuries in the past certainly makes it harder. Sometimes great groups of players just do not make a great team and there is nothing any manager can do. There really is nothing we can do at this point, just keep working and hope it comes together. If we go through this year with less injuries and still underperform then its time to take a hard look at the core group of players and tactics and may be rework some of the things we are doing. Your thoughts?

  34. end of day ™ we have a nice young team and newcastle have a lot of brickhouse old skool veterans with pumping testosterone levels. Psychologically they stuck to their guns and beat us down as we tried a bit too hard to make up for mid week with the home game. We definitely lacked the patience and that credit goes partly to newcastle closing us down quickly in the middle of the park. They will take points off other teams for us over the season no doubt… blah blah blah

    Arsenal to appeal Laurent Koscielny’s red card.

  35. Funny thing happened to some Tottenhom friends of mine… they got offered three tickets, flight packages to the San Siro last week, courtesy of the excellent Tottenhom Hotspurs Ticket Exchange System.

    Euros changed, passports dusted down, cock and ball emblems proudly polished, a spring in their step and a swagger in their malnourished hips; they pleaded with their places of work for time off. It was granted; bonanza, happy days!

    They lay awake, cock and ball duvet covers pulled way up, as unable to sleep as on so many Christmas Eve’s past.

    Next morning, phone rings, it’s Tottenham. “Sorry, lads. We booked you into that partition bit the Polizia use to seperate us from the Ultras. You know that bit? Yeah, I know, it’s always been there. Stupid really but you really, definitely, don’t actually have any tickets. None at all. Sorry ’bout that” Durrrrrrrrrrr. Phone goes dead.

    “Cheers, Tottenhom!”

    What a service! What a club! Best European night of your team’s entire history, and in all probability future too, wafted in front of your nose for 24 hours before swissssh, gone, fuck all.

    They’re friends of mine so I shouldn’t really find it funny but, gah! Hilarious.

  36. Sorry, I’ve got that wrong apparently, it was for the home game they got screwed for, the Euros and the Polizia were a poetic embellishment… still funny though.

  37. Bill, I see what you are saying about style of play, but to be honest I was most dismayed by how fruitless playing a different way was proving to be. We didn’t play our kind of game in the latter parts of the second half. We kept lofting high balls (often from central positions) into the box–not even crosses from wide, without any profit or threat. That was weird to me. As for the rest, yes, in some sense the die is cast. This is our team, our squad, our way of playing. How can we be consistent within this structure? I wish I knew, but more importantly, I wish Wenger and the players knew, since he seems a bit mystified as well about these lapses, just like after the WBA game. I guess, sometimes there are no clear answers, and we will just have to hope the team has the resources within to rally back and build the consistency they seek.

  38. Naivete at all levels for the Spuds in their grand European adventure. Bolton loss, tied with five teams at 15 and Newcastle above. They may want to reconsider qualifying for the knock out stages!

  39. Another thought about Cesc’s relatively slow start is the world cup hangover. Rooney, Torres, Cesc etc all seem to be underperforming. Henry was not great after 2006. Perhaps the mental strain and pressure of the WC and loss of an off season is a lot more difficult then we think.

  40. We can all analyze the game until we are blue in the face, but it really all boils down to one thing…a lack of desire and focus. It is purely mental inconsistency that causes these blips in the season. Over the last few years we have had far too many occasions where we just don’t show up mentally and it has to be corrected from the top down.

    Wenger needs to start being ruthless with players that are not up for it. If every player knows he is not beyond reproach they will be much more likely to give everything, every single match. This error has to be corrected or we will find ourselves on forums complaining more often than not.

    That being said, nothing is over and the race is still very much in the balance.

  41. Well, in the cases of Rooney and Torres, they must be the first hangovers in history that preceded drinking.

  42. Still can’t understand why Vela didn’t come on he did well on Wednesday when he came on and really should of scored!!

  43. People from Alsace tend to have a strong regional identity, and often consider themselves neither French nor German. It is true that Wenger has a strong work ethic, which is also supposedly a characteristic of people from protestant countries, especially Calvinist ones. Protestantism in Germany mainly derived from Luther. The French like to massacre protestants, thus controlling their number; but Alsace has usually avoided this treatment, so there are a large number of French speaking people of protestant heritage in Alsace.

  44. To early to call…

    I guess nothing wrong with being disappointed with recent results and bad form. On the other hand, it’s too early to give up with 27 games to go.

    This is a 10 months long exam, and you get the result of your work at the end of it not at the beginning.

    I just don’t know what the problem is and I still believe it’s not a one man’s problem, if you have to put it on one man’s shoulder, then it’s Wenger’s problem. That’s not to say he’s not good for the job, I’m sure he’s as pissed as any one of us, but he has to figure it out.

    I still think it’s a team personality issue, we are too nice, even our English players are too nice. I don’t mean that we need a hard-man, tackle maniacs or anything like that, but the undying desire to win every game with losing is not on the list of options is not there.

  45. You could be right G4E. It’s a mystery.

    The terrible possibility exists that all those pundits have a point about us being soft.

    That would be a bitter pill to swallow.

    Best thing is just to hammer Wolves on wednesday so that we can forget all about the matter.

  46. Limestone:

    Agreed, we can not make major changes at this point in the season. We will live with the tactics that we have and hopefully find the momentum in the next few weeks carry it through to the end of the year. Bottom line is the boss needs to figure out what motivates this group. Plenty of precedents for something like that to happen. The top of the table does not look that strong and there is still plenty of time if we start soon.

  47. Paul N,

    Re reserve games. I think there just aren’t enough of them? Denilson had this problem last season it seemed. After his return from injury in the new year, there were no reserve games scheduled before the plague of injuries/bind side cowardly kicks resulted in the him playing ahead of schedule?

    With Frimpong and now Diaby out the squad is more fragile in the CM area, dare I say say it, the Position of D**M.
    I hope some of the Diaby doubters realise how good Diaby was in those first few games of the season? I could be wrong.
    Before any lifeless trolls start on Frimpong, whilst obviously a rookie, he looked as good as anyone in pre-season.

  48. Will this squad have been affected by Diaby’s injury?
    Following on from Cesc’s bruised bone,
    Ramsey’s scythe,
    the hounding of Eduardo?…etc…
    The above is probably gibberish & lame psycho-babble.
    How many broken legs can one squad cope with before the squad needs to be rebuilt?

    A sweet, confident finish from Eduardo the other day.

  49. That’s me D**Ming above, my darkest fear.
    Sorry.

    Time for Wolves to get ripped apart by the Gunners.

  50. Did any of you watch the Californian horse Zenyetta at Churchill Downs on Saturday. A six year old who had never lost a race. She walked into the breeders cup 19-0. I say walk, she actually dances onto the track. This was the first time she had run against the boys. Tears came to my eyes as I watched this gorgeous animal prance onto the track before she was locked into the starting gate. The nay sayers were at their best and they were absolutely clear that this horse was not worth all the attention. She had never run against the boys they said and she had never run on a dirt track. (California has a number of synthetic tracks).

    They were off and Zenyetta ran dead last for at least the first mile in this mile and one quarter race. Her jockey asked her to get going and she started moving up through the middle of the pack. With less than a quarter of a mile left in the race she starting to move into position. Zenyetta was nearing the leader and was half a length behind. She lost the race by a little more than a nose. The plan was to retire Zenyetta after this race so we will not see her run a competitive race again. Her owners will breed her to the best sires and her fowls will cost about zillion samolies at the very least.

  51. So are we all to review our expectations now? Too early for me.

    Its an unfair sports, we hit the bar and the post a few times, and they score from the only chance they created. Sucks. The whole team was disjointed, Cesc clearly wasn’t fit enough to have started. Maybe Arsene picked the wrong team, perhaps one of Denilson or Rosicky should have started, given the condition of both Nasri and Cesc. A long season ahead, best we can do, is to cheer on.

    So is Rosicky specifically in the team to play in the CL? How many EPL matches has he started?

  52. Pz,

    Thanks for the extra information, personally from what I saw at the WC I welcome the German influence! Also we do love our French men having dual nationality, e.g PV4, Pires, Kozz, Seb, Gael

  53. Bobby Pires is being linked to a coaching role at Villa.

    Surely that would be a waste – can`t we somehow squeeze him in at London Colney ?

  54. I review my expectations every day. Mostly I am just happy to wake up in the morning with the knowledge that life does not owe me anything.

  55. Easy, we should just buy a team of crocodiles, PZ.

    But I bet the stingy f*cking board would never put up the cash.

  56. To say Arsenal is soft is a bunch of nonsense. We have beaten most of the teams that try to oustmuscle us this season. We were also playing great going into the CL match. I believe no one had scored on us in 3 straight matches.

    I am not giving up on this team and WE DONT NEED A GOALKEEPER! What we may need though is a vocal leader. Some people say it doesnt matter but to me sometimes you need someone to stir things up a little bit, get angry and all that.

  57. I’ve actually seen a Didiersaurus in a book. It had a muscular body and a large, bony skull to protect its miniscule brain during rutting season. Its solution to every problem was to close its eyes and charge, like an unusually stupid rhinoceros. With a brain smaller than a dried lentil, it was unable to adapt when environmental conditions changed for the worse, and thus it was one of the first dinosaurs to become extinct.

  58. “Thinks its funny how everyone jumps on the ‘same old arsenal, to soft to win anything’ band wagon! Bad day at the office… nothing more nothing less! Long way to go yet and we will be back stronger on wednesday!”

    You tell ’em Jack!

  59. I’ll try one –

    Terrysaurus – Unusual, in that this creature’s brain was located towards its crotch, with high levels of testosterone coursing into the decision making region – about the size of pin-prick – when the Terrysaurus was in the company of the opposite sex . The Terrysaurus was a social, itinerant animal, but, despite prominent displays of loyalty to its nest and mate, was always ready to pass its DNA onto other members of the herd, particularly the mates of hunting partners. A common method of attack was the two-footed thrust when its opponent was prone and oblivious on the ground.

    Sorry!

  60. Why, I have never thought that Arsenal was anything but as hard as nails Pilgrim. Even when the entire team was down with every muscle pull and tweak known to modern medical science, my mind was tough and more tough. By the way, I understand that Diaby is now being advised by the team doctors about his ankle and it may not be what we all want to hear. Gosh, I hope that they can get that man back on his football feet.

  61. Rutting season begins November 14th or in that very near vicinity. This is the period of time that the Bucks go absolutely looney and will attempt to mount anything on four legs. I have seen a Moose in Alaska mount a mail box and it did not have four legs. It is the best time of the Deer hunting season which I will attempt to enjoy in about one week in New York State in the Adirondacks.

  62. Poliziano,

    interesting thoughts on protestants in Elsass. I’m not sure whether Wenger is catholic or protestant. However, he admits that he speaks German fluently (looks like it’ s his mother tongue), and his surname is certainly German. He also many times acknowledged to have been strongly influeneced by the German football in 70-s. The guy is German, he just can not say it.

  63. Wenger thinks of himself as French. That fact, I am afraid, makes him purely French. Although he does speak German, I do not think that is entirely unusual in Europe where several languages are known to many Euopeans.

  64. Wenger may think of himself as French (as from France), but that’s not the point. He has German origin, and admitting it would help to understand him better. Not many people in France speake German. The fact is he is from a German speaking province, and the village he was born in is called Duttlenheim, which is a typical German name.

  65. And what is this highly sophisticated man supposed to admit that would help the world understand him better?

  66. Whom are you calling fool mate?Does this site give everyone their rights to express opinions?I would leave,if you put some message up that messages which are intended to criticise Wenger and some of those mediocre players wont be allowed.

  67. Well I do believe the purveyor of foolish comments is generally well perceived to be a fool. And when said fool continues to spout foolish comments to an even greater degree, the contrast between perception and reality is diminished to nothing.

    Ergo, Jaguar = fool

  68. You are right of course, it is all about opinion. I just happen to think that that particular one is short sighted. Wenger has made plenty of mistakes, but I still think he is the right man for the job. If we are honest I can’t see the board ever sacking him anyway.

  69. It’s time for me to sod off. I’m Jaguar and I have no clue about anything. I hate Wenger because he’s so clever & I’m just a sorry dreg.

  70. Tool are an awesome band. And a tool is a useful apparatus for fixing or doing things. I have no idea why tool is meant to be used as an insult these days, nor do I have any idea as to what the insult is. Kids these days, they just have no style

  71. I’m sorry ACLF. I am sorry for being such a naughty boy. I won’t slag off the team again. I won’t slag off the manager. I will try to handle defeat with grace. Please forgive me, ACLF.

  72. It has to be said Wengers decision making could at times be questionable when it matters most as I don’t think withdrawing Wilshere wasa smart move on his part. The FA cup Semi-finals against Chelsea readily comes to mind when he decided not to start an Andrey Arshavin who was cup-tied. I seriously have a problem with his choice of substitutions and he constant love for playing some of our players out of position with a perfect example being Nasri. Nasri prefers playing centrally in the midfield but due to the presence of Cesc, he is often deployed on the right flank, a position which in my opinion he hasn’t been doing badly.

    I am also inclined to believe that Wenger has preference for some players especially Abou Diaby who seem to just walk back into the starting line-up. I believe that present form should be a determining factor in the next team selection process. The idea that a player is guaranteed a starting line-up regardless of his previous perfomances is not good enough. All sentiments aside, we all know that some of our first team players are not even good enough to sit on the bench of some of the other top clubs.

    I have also taken note of the fact that Arshavin is becoming less efficiencient as seems to be adapting more and more to the arsenal style of play (A lil too much of passing in the 18). I remember watching him against West Ham pass a ball in the 18 which I felt he should have taken a shot at goal. The Arshavin we bought used to be more decisive in attacking areas and not always afraid to take a shot on goal. I still believe he is one of the few payers in that team that can make a lot of difference although he seems so uninterested presently but the stats still favor him.

    AND FINALLY, THE IDEA OF A BOYCOTT IS TO BRING A CONSCIOUSNESS OF HOW IMPORTANT THE FANS ARE TO THE CLUB. THE ONLY VOICE/MEDIUM THE FANS TO EXPRESS THEIR FRUSTRATIONS ARE A SERIES OF BLOGS LIKE THIS ONE THAT THE CLUB DOESNT CARE ABOUT AND MIGHT NOT EVEN KNOW EXISTS. I BELIEVE THE PRESENCE OF THE FANS ALONE SHOULD BE ENOUGH TO MOTIVATE A TEAM. I REMEMBER STEVE BRUCE SAYING HE WAS GOING TO APOLOGISE TO THE FANS AFTER THAT HUMILIATING LOSS TO NEWCASTLE. SOME MIGHT ARGUE ABOUT THE MARGIN BUT THE FACT THAT WE LOST HOME GAMES TO 2 OF THE NEWLY PROMOTED SIDES IS HUMILIATING IN IT SELF. AND IF WE THINK THAT IS NOT ENOUGH, REMEMBER OUR CONTINUAL HUMILIATING LOSSES TO MAN UTD AND CHELSEA INCLUDIING THAT VERY HUMILIATING HOME LOSS TO MAN UTD IN THE CHAMPIONS LEAGUE SEMIS LAST YEAR. VERY PAINFUL EXPERIENCES THEY HAVEE BEEN AND WE STILL DONT SEEM TO HAVE LEARNT ANYTHING OR DONE SOMETHING ABOUT IT. WE HAVE SIMPLY REFUSED TO MAKE A FORTRESS OF THE EMIRATES STADIUM.

    WE SHOULD ALL REMEMBER THAT THE MOST CONSISTENT TEAM WINS THE LEAGUE.

  73. Kosielny’s appeal has ben dismissed, so he has to serve a 2 match ban.

    Anyone who thought that there was never even the remotest chance of the appeal being successful, like myself, were correct.

    No surpise there.

  74. @rexes
    I completely agree with your view. question is whether our manager realises the need for a balanced side with physical and passing approaches

Comments are closed.