Monreal & Gnabry instead of Gibbs & Jack? Ramsey to win it for Arsenal?

Arsenal vs the Orcs Pre-Match Report

ORCS (edit)

That’s right the Stoke City Orcs have landed at Ashburton Grove, and this time it’s without their goblin manager Tony Pulis leading the charge. Under Pulis, Stoke played some absolutely deplorable football, so much so that their FIFA 2013 controls looked a little something like this:

stoke playstation controller

This would be very annoying to any Stoke fan playing the game because an attempt at a low through ball would result in a sky ball hoof up to Crouch. But when you kill one, another equally evil manager, grows in their place…Mark Hughes. Mark Hughes has got them playing better football which would please the Stoke supporters. It’s something that should please Arsenal supporters as well because their old approach was our Achilles heel (RIP Delap’s towel). They are still a very dangerous team so Arsenal will need to be at their best today if they want to come away with the three points.

Let’s get in to it shall we:

Missing in Action:

Diaby sick bay

Arsenal: Podolski (Hamstring), Ox (Knee), Arteta (Thigh), Diaby (Knee), Rosicky (Hip), Zelalem, Santi (Ankle), and Sanogo (back).

Bear with me here, now my theory is Santi is not in fact injured but he has been given time off. It’s not the first time Arsene has done something like this in the past. It is strange that Santi played the full 90 minutes against Chile and showed no sign of injury. It was also very strange that nothing was said about him until after the Sunderland game. Santi had a busy off-season with limited time off, so perhaps Arsene is being cautious and doesn’t want to run him into the ground this season. Arsene is also renowned for suggesting certain players are injured, in an effort to shelter them from reports suggesting they’ve been dropped. Now call me a conspiracy theorist all you want, but it does seem awfully coincidental that Santi goes missing right when Jack is fit and Ozil has been signed. Arsene would prefer the ‘injured’ story over endless stories and questions about Jack or Santi being ‘upset’ about dropping to the bench. I think if Ozil or Jack picked up an injury, Santi would make a miraculous recovery. Rested or injured? You decide!!!

Stoke City: Whelen (Hamstring), Muniesa (Groin/Pelvis), and Ness (Hip/Thigh) will miss this fixture.

Predicted Line-up:

starting line-up (11)

I’m a bit torn for this game to be honest. We’ve got a good thing going at the moment but I’m a bit worried about some of our players entering the infamous ‘red zone’. Gone are the days where you could rotate your squad a little against lesser opposition. You can’t really get away with it anymore because every game is tough in the premier league. Gibbs has been in red hot form this season but based on his previous injury record (coupled with the ferocity of Stoke), I’d go with Monreal at left back. I’d give Jack a rest and put Gnabry out on the left. It may be a drop off in quality but that boy can play and could be an unknown quantity for Stoke. He scored a double midweek playing as a striker; add that to the match winner he scored last week and he’s in blistering form. I wouldn’t change much else though (partly because we have that many injuries so our options are limited, and I wouldn’t want to unsettle the squad too much.)

Previous Encounters:

Arsenal v Stoke 1-0

It took a deflected free kick from Lukas Podolski to see us over the line in this fixture. Although we were dominant in periods, Asmir Begovic denied us numerous times thanks to some brilliant keeping. We saw the emergence of newly signed LB Nacho Monreal, and based on the hype HH created from his excellent post Nacho did not disappoint. Shawcross did his best to intimidate the ref in an effort to overturn the goal (also thought he would have a go at Arteta to show just how big a w*nker he really is), but he did not succeed.

Have a look at the goal and aftermath here:

Stoke v Arsenal 0-0

We were held to our second consecutive goalless draw. We defended well but despite taking over the game for large parts we were very toothless in attack. Santi was mesmerizing and Giroud nearly pinched it late with a magnificent lob attempt. You can see the highlights below:

Form Guide:               Arsenal:  : WWWWW        Stoke: DWWWL

We’ve won 5 in a row now and seem confident in getting results when the heat is on (quite the change from previous seasons). Arsenal will be in a confident mood for this one.

Stoke have had a good start under Mark Hughes. They were unlucky to lose against Liverpool, they beat West Ham away, and they held ManchesterCity to a goalless draw.

Arsenal Archive (1)

This week I’ve dipped into the Arsenal Archive and pulled out this video clip. It’s the 1970-71 FA Cup semi-final against stoke city. Those old enough to enjoy it saw Peter Storey drag Arsenal back and force a replay (which we eventually went on to win!!!). Have a look at this article detailing how Arsenal denied Stoke FA Cup success in the 70s

One to Watch:

Former Blackburn midfielder Steven N’Zonzi. I’ve found him officers; he’ll be at the Emirates on Sunday. Those who haven’t heard N’Zonzi is ‘being hunted by police for his connection with a roadside altercation with a cyclist.’ You can read all about it here:

I for one am glad I will not be at the Emirates for this one. The thought of getting mugged in the stalls by Pennant or N’Zonzi haunts me in my sleep. Those going to the game should jump on Arsenal direct; they’ve got a special on now for this game, here’s an image below:

Arsenal riot gear

In all seriousness though, N’Zonzi is a bulldog in midfield. Although he handed in a transfer request in the summer, he’s put his head down and stuck to the task. He won man of the match honours against both West Ham and ManchesterCity this season. He shackled Yaya last week…this week he has Ozil to deal with!

This week’s one to watch has to be AARON RAMSEY. I can’t say anything more about his season thus far that hasn’t been said already. He’s a menace all over the pitch thanks to his endless gut running, and more importantly he’s becoming a constant danger to the opposition. His importance to this squad can’t be exaggerated enough at the moment. With Giroud in top form (5 goals from 6 shots on target this season) and World Class Ozil on the pitch, we could fall in to the trap of becoming too over reliant on them. That sort of over reliance can easily be targeted by opposition managers. Aaron Ramsey isn’t allowing that to happen. Both he and Walcott will not allow opposition players to double or triple team Ozil. Bring in Santi and you have a nightmare scenario for any opposition manager. It’s the sort of situation which could see more and more teams drop off in the second half (good prediction midweek Alcide) as their press is stretched all over the pitch by Walcott, Ozil, Santi, Giroud, and Ramsey.  We all know Ramsey’s history with Stoke so there is no need to explain why Aaron will be fired up for this one…and he’ll have a crowd full of supporters backing him every step of the way!

Key-Match up:

Arsenal vs Asmir Begovic

Before Begovic signed from Portsmouth in 2010 he was a keeper I wanted to see playing for Arsenal. While I am very happy with Szczesny, but Begovic is a top quality goalkeeper (probably not well liked in England considering he’s keeping Butland out), and he has proved it time and time again against us in the past. If he makes a couple of good saves early on, you’re going to have to pull something special out to get past him for the remainder of the game. Begovic could be the difference between a win or draw so let’s hope he’s having a bad day.

Pre-Match Finger:

kid finger

This week’s finger goes to penalties!!! Like Szczesny they are getting on my nerves! It’s as though the umpires guess their decisions half the time because they aren’t in the correct position to be 100% certain. Please for the love of Christ (Dennis) get some 3rd umpire technology. It’s not like it’s going to the slow the game down that much (some games you won’t even need to use it). Plus if you are going to overlook players rolling around on the ground and diving…it’s the least you can do! It’d kill two birds with one stone because we’d be almost 100% certain on the decision, and the refs can decide whether or not the person involved dived. It’s not fair that commentators can say “every forward does it”…it’s CHEATING!!!! The game should be doing all it can to cut it out and strengthen its image. I’m sick and tired of hearing “Man U won because player X went down in the box and player Z was sent off”. I don’t want to hear fossils whinge about the game changing either…it’s an improvement! The technology is there, USE IT!!!

Pre-Match pat on the back:

pat on the back

This week’s pat on the back is going to Arsene Wenger. It may be early days but he’s got the squad looking in tip top shape again. I don’t think there has been a manager in recent history that has copped as much flack as Arsene has.  Once upon a time Arsenal fans adored Arsene, but as trophies dried up the supporter base began to turn. He’s not perfect, he’s not without fault but he’s still got his magic hat! He deserves to go out on top, and I hope this Arsenal team can start delivering for him!


Ask the opposition (5)

‘Ask the opposition’ returns again this week. It is designed to get some friendly banter from our opposition fans and get their insight for the match ahead.  This week the answers were kindly provided by Jowlermonkey and Waddos_Legends (both from the StokeCity board on . Let’s see what they’ve written for us this week:

1) You cleared out quite a few players during the transfer window. How do you rate your transfer window (ins and outs)?

JOWLERMONKEY: Glad to see the back of some players, fantastic that we now have a left back, needed to buy another striker.

WADDOS_LEGENDS: Our transfer window was quite good with the exception that we did not address one of our weakest positions and that is we needed two fresh young fresh strikers. Marko Arnautović was a great signing and he looks a beast so I’m really looking forward to what he can do in front of goal. We have another one coming in January from the USA, Juan Agudelo but we needed another sooner as we cannot score goals.

I was pleased to see a lot of the “Pulis Deadwood” players moved on and also pleased we at last bought in a recognised left back in Erik Pieters. Stephen Ireland was another great signing and the retention of Jermaine Pennant was another good piece of business. Loaning out Cameron Jerome for me to Crystal Palace was a mistake.


2) How is Mark Hughes travelling? Will he take you places? Better than Pulis?

JOWLERMOONKEY: I didn’t want Mark hughes, but said i’d give him his chances to hang himself. much better than Pulis.

WADDOS_LEGENDS: Early days yet to see if Hughes will take us places but we are certainly playing better football under Hughes than we ever did under Pulis. i actually feel confident going into certain games now especially away from home as before I looked on all away games as we were going to lose. Our current league position and points tally does suggest we are on the up!

The football under Tony Pulis was dire and towards the end he lost the Stoke crowd. The attendance is still suffering now and it will take a few seasons to change this back.

3) What player/position is your weakest?

JOWLERMONKEY: Strikers, neither good or hungry enough.

WADDOS_LEGENDS: As mentioned above our weakest position is in front of goal and Jon Walters as probably cost us 4 points so far this season so I would have to say him. Missed a 88 minute penalty at Liverpool this season away and 2 clear cut chances on Saturday against Manchester City.

The player just loaned out to Wigan Ryan Shotton is Stokes worst player now that is still technically on the books!

4) Which Arsenal player would you like and why?

JOWLERMONKEY: Wilshere, fast dynamic, good feet.

WADDOS_LEGENDS: The only Arsenal players I would like to see in the Stoke shirt would be either Ozil or Santi Cazorla, as I don’t think any other player would slot into our style of play and these 2 players are top players.

5) Which player/position do you feel is our weakest?


WADDOS_LEGENDS: I feel Arsenal are weakest at the back, can’t name one player in particular but this is definitely an area you struggle in hence why you brought in the ex-Stokie and old school friend of mine ” Steve Bould”.

6) Özil, will he live up to the hype?

JOWLERMONKEY: Fantastic player. Will need to be protected but has always produced the goods.

WADDOS_LEGENDS: Ozil already is showing his brilliance and will definitely live up to his reputation as a class act!

7) What is your prediction for the match?

JOWLERMONKEY: Hoping for a draw but you should beat us comfortably.

WADDOS_LEGENDS: Stoke have yet to get anything from the Emirates in the duration of our stay in the premier league. Again as i have said above I’m more confident this season and I predict a close game with 1-1 being the outcome and us picking up our first ever points there. No doubt Ryan Shawcross will be booed from start to finish as per for the “Ramsey Incident” but this helps him to lift his game and fire up his sparring partner Robert Huth!


Stoke have had an impressive start to the season but I do not see them troubling us at home. We’ve beaten them 5/5 at the Emirates, and Mark Hughes has lost his last 6 games at the Emirates (in that time he’s managed Blackburn, ManCity, Fulham, and QPR…how on earth does he keeping getting jobs??). Crouch will be isolated up front so they’ll only get joy out of set pieces (we’ll have to lift our game in this department because we let Marseille have a couple of cheapies midweek). A comfortable and assured performance should see Arsenal victorious 2-0.

shawcross scared

For this week’s psychic prediction I contacted ‘Eagle Star’ for the third week. He better lift his game though otherwise I’m going to have to consult our very own Jgc-damus. Here are his responses:

Oz: Will Arsenal beat the Stoke City Orcs?

Eagle Star: Hmmmm 1-1 I feel.

Oz: The way they play it wouldn’t surprise me if they went for the draw. Will we concede from a set piece?

Eagle Star: Dangers…yes, score…no!

Oz: Can you please put a curse on Ryan Shawcross. I’m not sure what but maybe some Paranormal Activity type scares when he’s at home.

<insert Shawcross Scared pic>

Eagle Star: That’s not my area of expertise Oz but I can contact someone who is.

Oz: You’re a star Eagle…get it????

Eagle Star: <disconnected…and blocked>


What is your prediction?

Theo or Giroud…who will score?

Will we shut down their set piece game?

Written by: Oz Gunner

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239 Responses to Monreal & Gnabry instead of Gibbs & Jack? Ramsey to win it for Arsenal?

  1. Dylan says:

    Fantastic prematch as usual Oz! 🙂

  2. TotalArsenal says:

    Absolute feast of a pre-match report, OzG. Loving all the images and especially the FIFA controls hahahaha 🙂

    I really like your line up. I don’t think Arsene will leave Jack out on the left, but a rest might do him good and Gnabry could do with a start. Monreal for Gibbs would make sense, but again, I reckon Arsene will not tweak his formation at all from our last game. Four days rest should be enough and he will want to keep things as unchanged as possible.

    All agreed on Nzonzi and Begovic being our biggest challenges tomorrow. We need intricate football tomorrow to get past and through the parked busses and when we get in scoring positions our attackers will need to be incisive. A good game for Theo, I reckon.

  3. mA says:

    Good one…

    but just remember that the horrible orcs have improved their movement on and off the ball under Hughes. This was evident against Man City, and I read somewhere that they have so far averaged more possession than they ever did under Pulis for several years. Hopefully the Arsenal dwarfs and dominates them completely by showing how its done possession-wise and technically, while standing shoulder to shoulder physically. I must also add that their forward line is a massive letdown.

    Seemingly an easy ride for the Arsenal, but as TA said, OGAAT is the mantra. Giro, Theo and or Ramsey to score first. Ozil and an unlikely source have a remote chance to score, too. Arteta back in the fold? Tomorrow lets ‘pre-match finger’ that horrible team, and put them where they belong.

  4. 17highburyterrace says:

    Freaking spectacular preview, Oz…Topping yourself yet again…I guess Stoke is a bit of an easy target, but so too we’re Spurs…Still the subtlety and density of humor (humour?) seems immense–I hope you’re getting paid to do all the image-rearranging and back and forth with opponent supporters (i.e., on the clock, at work, etc.)… Really good stuff…

    Santi-spiracy theory…I like it. What a lying sack of poo that AW is 😆 I’d love to see Santi on the bench and spelling either Jack or Messey or even Theo if we can get a 2 goal cushion. Have we gotten the first goal in every match we’ve played? This cannot go on forever. As such, Arteta on the bench would also be nice–and he might come on (for Flams) should we (god forbid) be needing a goal late. We need bodies for the WBA CoC match and Gnabry to score the goals up there so I don’t see him getting the call just yet. Same with Nacho for Gibbs…gotta wait until next Weds for that…

    How does Mark Hughes keep getting jobs?… It’s the hair, silly… 😆 Tulis Pulis wasn’t hiding anything with the hat…

    3 points, nobody hurt, Ozil/Theo rampant… Those are my priorities (in descending order)…Really hoping to FEEL the home support tomorrow. If you can’t get up for the home unveiling of our MONSTER signing (googly eyes and all)… against the leg breakers, give your ticket to a kid on the terraces (or trying to sneak into a pub)…and check yourself for a pulse…

    Big match… (Oh–Gaat, as the netherlanders say…) and a (very) early kickoff for me, but it should find my friends from down under in fine fettle later on in their evenings, no?

  5. weedonald says:

    Ramsey to score again and Walcott as well. A tight game but Stoke will tire in the 2nd half and we’ll get them when they drop their pace. Hopefully no serious injuries because of the Orcs!

  6. Rohan says:

    Can understand Monreal for gibbs from a fitness aspect. From a tactical POV however Monreal’s relative lack of pace would negatively impact our attacking play. Gibbs’ pace,acceleration and stamina allow him to play far higher up the pitch which allows ozil or Wilshere (whichever plays left) to drift into the middle. Gibbs’ presence adds width and also creates space in the middle for these players and as such is essential until we have podolski, rosicky or Ox back from injury.

  7. TotalArsenal says:

    Agreed 17, the Santi theory is a good one by Oz. Given him a good rest would make sense though, as we need booster-rockets added on to the first team in the next few months, and the return of Santi, Pod, Ox and Arteta are very fine ones to add to the mothership. 🙂

  8. TotalArsenal says:

    With Pool losing today it is just their neighbours who remain unbeaten this season. One more to go and our Invincibles record is protected for another season. 🙂


    Excellent as always Ozzy Baby.

    Tomorrow will be a special day for me. I am taking my sixteen year old daughter to her first match.

    Like all fathers, i am going through the same emotions, what the bloody hell is she after??

    Shes never expresed an interest before. Is it money? well i aint got none, her mums got it all. Maybe she wants to impress her friends, or even worse some boy. I have my hands full with my eldests boyfriend, I hate him and fantasise hes eaten by an escaped Lion.

    If it does turn out to be some acned floopy haired twat then i will have to threaten kidnap and torture. No zitty faced punk is going near my princess.

    So Stoke are now playing better football hey? Christs sake, that cant be hard can it,

    Pullis was a total wanker with a shower fetish and his replacement has the personality of a gold fish.

    Saying all that, i do not dislike Stoke the Club or there supporters. People always emphasise the negatives, but in truth they are a good club who have clawed there way out of the Championship and established themselves as a mid table Premeirship team. In my book, that has to be respected.

    I expect to win tommorow but Stoke are a good side and will attempt to stifle and restrict our play.

    5-0 Arsenal.

  10. Dave says:

    Niklas Bendtner’ s new look at AFC
    training to today??
    I call him “BENDTNER OF NAZARETH”..haha

  11. TotalArsenal says:

    Dave 😆

    Terry, you are a softy! 😆


    Yeah, i noticed that Dave

    I am realy worried that is just the final straw as Niklas descends into madness, believing he is the Messiah and forming some weird Cult

    He will probably attempt to walk on water in his football boots and spout crap on the meaning of the Universe and how he is better than Messi, whilst all the time he is brain washing vulnerable young girls so he can have sex with them.

    Come to think about it, i might start a Cult myself. hahaha

  13. James Bond says:

    there’s no one better at doing these than you , OZ

    well done and it was thoroughly enjoyable, however , i must cut through the chase and cheesy bits here and come directly to the point – you dislike Sczny as much as i do ? ? ? ? ?

    i thought i was the only one on here , who didn’t think he was ready yet to be the number one goalie for a top notch club.

    i would stick with Gibbs, he’s in rich vein of form at present and as well as JW, since he’s beginning to find his groove and range, so basically the same starting 11 as Wednesday, will be harsh to play Nacho after Gibbs’s masterclass against Marseille.

    let us start and play our strongest 11, it’s delivering the goods, so why fix something that ain’t broke (or injured).

    re- Santi, then yes, he might have requested some time off himself due to personal reasons, either way, it’s not bad at all as i’m expecting him to be back vs Napoli or sooner, if need be.

    fingers crossed either way !

  14. James Bond says:


    so you still maintain your stance on Stoke being better at FOOTBALL Technically than Arsenal ?


  15. oz gunner says:

    @ Jgc

    cited over 3800 times and you completed your Phd at Stanford…you sir are royalty!

    @ Dylan

    cheers, tell that school of yours to ease up on the homework (either that or you’ve got you mitts on GTA 5), we all miss your comments and posts. FIFA 14 in 5 days

    @ TA

    thank you, and thanks again for letting me post my inane mutterings.

    I agree Arsene probably won’t change it up, and after 4 days rest he may feel he has no need too. I’m just worried that so many consecutive games could result in burn out (especially Gibbs and Giroud). Theo’s off the ball running will definitely help. He doesn’t get enough credit for the runs he does off the ball. Especially the ones where he runs full tilt across goal and drags 1/2 with him out of position.

    (did I send my shawcross scared pic? I probably didn’t highlight it well enough in the ‘psychic prediction’ section.

    @ mA

    Definitely wouldn’t be taking Stoke likely (no teams should be anymore. Look what Southampton did to pool).They have changed but they’ve played Pulis football for so long that it’ll take time.
    I think their forward line is dangerous but they aren’t helped enough by their defensive style of play. I like Jones, I thought he’d be the next drogba but he hasn’t had enough game time over the years and should have left Stoke. Walters can be dangerous at times also.

    @ all

    will be back in a jiff to comment on the remainder, breakfast beckons and I’m getting evil looks from the Mrs 🙂

  16. Bongo says:

    Hi, Bongo here, the Spurs supporter.

    I’ve not commented on this site for a while because nothing much has happened really, what with the international break and closing of the transfer window.

    Obviously the Liverpool result was great news for both of us, well done Southampton. Dare I say we have the easier game tomorrow (on paper), though you have the home advantage, but I can’t see either of us losing.

    I remember saying a few weeks ago on this site (which I do enjoy reading), I quote myself “Wouldn’t it be good if it were Spurs and Arsenal competing for the Title in a few years time”

    One of you learned posters replied “Why not this year?, We both have good enough teams” I can’t remember who that was but right now he seems quite an intelligent chap.

    Love the troll thing for Stoke by the way, made me chuckle. So if all goes to plan it should be a goal difference thing as to who is top tomorrow.

    Maybe I was hoping but I didn’t expect you to to be doing so well, I do hope you get an unlucky draw tomorrow but I can’t see it.


    I’ve never had anyone troll me on this site but if you feel the need to express your anger towards the enemy please feel free to do so on my youtube which I have set up for a bit of fun.

  17. henrychan says:

    Morning all..
    Oz.. You’re really Ozil.. hehe.. You make the post (game) more enjoyable to read(watch).. hehe..

    But bro.. I don’t agree with you about Gibbs.. We will play and score.. He almost did it.. and he gel with Ozil very smooth.. hehehe..

    If Wilshere must bench.. then I go for Miyaichi first.. with him and Walcott We have two speed-racer in both side..

    And I think Arteta will play.. maybe in second round.. Flamini need to rest.. Arteta will do the job nicely..

    4-1.. with Gibbs.. Walcott.. Ramsey and Ozil scores.. hehe..
    Stoke will be no wall for us again.. cause Rambo and Meszill will breakdown the wall.. hehehe..

  18. AFC says:

    Brilliant pre-match report Oz. 🙂

    Love the FIFA 13 Stoke control. That’s classic. Anyone would think that the ground pass button (x) and the through ball button (triangle) are permanently broken on Stoke’s control pad. I would also say the L2 (flair button/skill button) might not even be in the Stoke control pad at all. 😀

    I think Wenger will stick with Gibbs and Jack. He would only not play them if they were injured or if they were really close to burnout. It’s still quite early in the season so I cannot see them getting rested. If Jack was to be rested I would expect to see Ryo in his place rather than Gnabry. I think Wenger sees Ryo as being more experienced and further on in his development than Gnabry.

    The match will be a tough one. Stoke (when they are playing at their best) conceded very few goals and have quite a good defence but struggle to score goals. I think any win will be marginal. If we do not win the match I can see the match ending as a draw. I cannot see us losing the match unless we are really poor. Maybe if we could get an early goal and force Stoke to have to react and have to attack (push up) that could work out for us as Walcott in particular would be able to exploit any space behind the back line is they are defending with a high line.

    I really do want us to get the three points as we could jump to the top of the table. Spurs might drop points and if we can keep this winning streak up we could be in a very good position come January where AW might look to bring in another player to compliment the squad.

    Your theory about Santi could be true. Last season Santi played in every EPL match and maybe Wenger wants to rest him. Remember what happened to David Silva. It seemed that he suffered from burnout in his second season at City after he too played every match in the EPL for them in his first season. I certainly expect to see Santi playing in any upcoming CL fixtures.

  19. Funminiyi says:

    This is lovely matey! Keep ’em tumbling in.
    I’m really upbeat but I don’t wanna get too ahead of myself here and I’d like to go for a 2 – 1 to the Arsenal. Theo/Ozil/Gnabry( if he plays)/OG and Ramsey.
    “We’re never outgunned”. Who remembered this theme? From 03/04 season.

  20. oz gunner says:

    @ 17

    Cheers, always appreciate your kind words.
    You are right, perhaps Arsene has told them to give their all and then have the midweek game off. Then again even that one is going to be tough. Haha he sure wasn’t hiding anything, I’m just glad we’ve seen the end of the two tracksuit idiots (Pulis and O’neill)…for now anyway.

    Massive game and you’re right we should be giving Stoke and their supporters a lot of stick; especially after the ‘do the wenger’ stuff they pulled last time. I want Shawcross booed all the way back to stoke. He set back Ramsey’s development a few years. Not to mention the Stoke fans who booed Ramsey whenever he touched the ball…idiots…Shawcross was the victim because he cried!!!

    I’m stoked at the early kickoff, bed by 1030 when i get up at 430 is beautiful!

    @ Rohan

    I don’t think Nacho has a lack of pace, i just think Gibbs is exceptionally quick. Walters can cause trouble at times so I’d prefer Nacho’s better defensive abilities (and he’s better in the air). But I can see both ways because we will probably need to unlock Stoke;s defence, so in that case Gibbs gives us more potency up front.

    @ Wee

    I hope they do tire. I don’t think they will as easy as Marseille did midweek…they are to well drilled defensively for that to happen.

    @ TA

    I’m glad both you, BJ, and 17 can see my reasoning behind the Santi theory. I just think it’s a card Arsene plays often.

    @ Terry

    Thank you, and good luck taking your daughter to the game. Here’s hoping she has an eye on Arsenal and no alternate motives 🙂 . But if Ozil winks at her don’t jump the fence and throttle him one…we need him.

    @ Dave

    haha I saw that pick, I’m glad he’s pulling his finger out. What a great addition he could be for this team if he works hard and finds form. It would allow us to play a similar style when Giroud needs a rest. And at the moment we need all the attacking help we can get.

    @ BJ

    thank you also. Sorry BJ If you’re looking for support vs Szczesny I’m not your man. I’m a big fan of his and I think he’ll be a world class goalkeeper. You can’t buy the loyalty and passion he has for Arsenal. I’m just a big fan of Begovic and I think he would have been far better than Almunia. He’d be fantastic back up too.

  21. oz gunner says:

    @ Henry

    Morning. haha thank you, I prefer the ‘denilson of pre-matches’.
    I like the idea of playing Ryo but I think against Stoke he may get ruffed up a little too much. At the moment we just have to keep him fit because we know the potential is there.

    I think Arteta will come on as a sub, perhaps a little soon to trust him straight in. Who knows though perhaps he was ‘rested’ under the Santi clause haha

    4-1, i’d love to see that, it’d make my day.

    @ AFC

    glad to have you back, i’ve missed reading your posts / comments.
    haha Stoke probably have the old fashioned joysticks. One for movement, 2 buttons (one for hoof, the other for headers).

    I’d be curious to know who Arsene rated more out of Ryo and Gnabry. Both have done some very exciting things. Ryo unfortunately hasn’t been able to stay fit so that’s happened him a bit. I’m just glad they are both at Arsene and to see what the future holds.

    I don’t see us losing either. They will leave crouch isolated against Per and Kozzer. I just hope we score early so they have to come on the attack.

    Good I’m glad people have jumped on the theory, i was worried you would all lock me up in Terry’s loft and put a foil helmet on my head 🙂

    Top of the ladder sounds perfect to me. Hopefully we can keep it up for the duration

  22. Fozzie B says:

    Good Morning baby gun gazers!!!
    Fantastic pre match and you truly are the Wizard of Oz!!
    Would love to Gnabry have a part today even if it is just for sub.
    Keyword is Humphrey boyzzzzzz …. Lets keep quietly confident and Humphrey the Stoke today!!
    Love the graphics again ozzy baby!! Especially the orcs shall not pass!!
    I feel we are still going to have a stormer today even after coming back from Europe! I think our bench will be vital and I hope ryo will get a bit more time today if we are not chasing!
    COYRRG’S !!!!
    😀 😀

  23. Fozzie B says:

    *Humphrey OGAAT

  24. Fozzie B says:

    3-0 to the arsenal today!!

  25. Gerry says:

    OZ – Great review. I don’t agree with all of it, but agree on SZCZ!

    First I want a quick recap on the Marseille match, as it has some relative pointers.

    I only got to see the match a couple of hours ago, so it is all very fresh.

    The first half started very brightly from both sides, but wayward passing, again from both sides, meant the quality deteriorated bar the the odd good moment.

    The second half it seem to open out a bit more, and as it went into the final quarter you could see Valbuena getting more frustrated. That suggested mental tiredness rather than physical, but nonetheless draining? Finally deadlock broken by a Gibbs cross, scooped header on to Walcott who smashed it home. That followed another period of play where we did not look to adventuress which allowed Marseille to have a bit of hope.

    Very quickly snufffed out by another Gibbs assist to Ramsey who ran into the opening created by Giroud taking two defenders away with him. Shot slightly deflected, but would have had more power had it not been nudged further away from thrir goalkeeper. Marseille were down and out. Then came the bizarre substitution of Ryo for Flamini? With both TV5 and Hayden on the bench, and after they had reinforced their midfield with attack-minded bodies hits at AW’s major weakness – Tactical substitutions?

    I have no problem with it being a penalty or not, in my book it was.Although Ramsey got a touch on the ball, no question. But the impeding after, by treading on his toe (at the very point where he wanted to lift off and chase the ball down), denied him a goal scoring opportunity?
    Certainly he had a better chance than Ramsey of getting to it, and probably Szcz as well?


    Gibbs without a shadow of doubt was the MOTM..There was one moment where he just chased down Gignac, after one of our attacks had broken down, who immediately passed inside. That player lost the ball, and either Per or Kos put it straight back to Gibbs, who then sped down the line to put in a half decent cross in, but Giro was surrounded.
    Gibbs did that time and again. Then there was the split second decision on the goal line clearance. Brilliant.

    That is the first difference I have with you OZ – How can you say that Nacho heads better than Gibbs? The clearances he does behind Kos and Per go on all the time. I’ve yet to see Nacho do anything as good as Gibbs in the above game. So he plays today because he is the better defender, full stop.

    Observation number two: I hear from TA down, calls for when Arteta comes back Flamini can be benched as a useful sub. Big mistake in my opinion?
    I had the fortune to know the stats coming into this game, So I knew Flamini covered more kilometers than anyone else … Including Ramsey?? How can this be with one guy tootling about in midfield, the other bombing up and down the vertical all day long. So I kept an eye on Flamini. Boy was it revealing. If there was a prize for least obvious, but most deserving MOTM then it was Matty Flambeau. He never stopped making himself available for a pass. Side to side, back and forth, not to mention his tackles and general ‘Presence!’ No wonder he looked knackered at the end. So I suggest to all who wonder about Arteta coming straight back in, I suggest you look closely at this game. If you think Arteta can do all that, then fine. I have my doubts

    Overall, The defense were pretty solid, which is what frustrated Marseille. Kos was a little more reserved, and probably rightly so. A mis-timed tackle here could have meant missing the Napoli game. The attack was not fluid. Ozil on the right does not do it for me. The link with Theo is a bit too close and allows the same defenders to move from one to the other, or at least cut out the return pass? Giroud had one decent chance, but was barely fed a decent ball all game. Again Jack had a few good moments, but the RamFlamshere trio does not work so well for Ozil. When Santi comes back(for Wilshere) I think we will have more cutting edge, with both Ozil and Santi roaming into intelligent positions, and Ramsey to come through late. At the moment it looks like they are using half of a collective brain out there.

    Now I am doubtful that there will be any changes from the midweek team. If Giroud was suffering from fatigue, then may be a starter for Akpom, and Bendtner subbing? But I’ll guess 60 minutes if we are 2-up, 80 if only one up, and replaced with either – this will be the last chance to test out who might make the WBA game? -. Gnabry too I think will get a chance, but probably for Theo, unless he’s on a hat-trick? And Jack might come on for Ozil, unless we are really flying, then Olsson. could get a few minutes?
    Defensively, Arteta/Hayden for Flam, or Monreal for Ramsey TV5 for whoever?

    One other point Oz. Of their new players who one of the Stoke guests(well done fellers, good stuff) mentioned could be a major threat, as I think they are going to play us on the counter. Walters will be the one testing Mert’s judgement, and ARMAUTOVIC will need watching. Pacy, and dangerous if allowed inside.

    OGAAT – this one! No prediction, but it is a game we should win?

  26. Fozzie B says:

    Theo and giroud and Ramsey to score today!!! and yes with the flame, BFG and OG we will be ok in the set piece defence!! I hope we come out if the blocks firing like we have been and score early!

  27. geoffchase says:


    Hardly…. Anyway, great pre-game as always.. My quick thoughts and thanks for the shout out to my predictive alter ego…

    1. Your lineup looks about right but I wouldn’t be surprised by any reasonable selection between yours and other options noted (eg Gibbs, Monreal).

    IMO, Monreal needs more playing time and Gibbs form will hold with confidence which comes in part from not being too tired when you play (and thus play badly or not as well).. Monreal should be chomping at the bit and thus very ready for the clash that is Stoke.

    2. Interesting about Santi, and I think burnout is a major issue for some footballers. Potentially you see it every time a big name player starts or goes well and then suddenly cannot do anything. Gets sold for nothing (relatively) and suddenly they are back at it. Sometimes it’s football style or personalities (Mata?) but I wonder how often burnout plays a role..

    Credit to AW but no major players play better elsewhere then they did at Arsenal…

    So, could well be some rest just from noting let off in training. If we go back to prior discussions, there is the rest-recovery cycle and larger such cycles which we see as first and second half of season, and full season around that. But there are proven larger cycles over 2-4 years where, depending on sport, you may well have a down or off year or need a rest year.

    Full out, full time, always is just not doable in any job… It’s why you almost never see Olympians winning WCs either 1 or 2 years post Olympics, not if they want to be ready 4 years later..

    3. Jgc-damus is not sure if he made a call, but his current thoughts are: 2-0 or 3-0 to the Arsenal, Stoke only score if we give up a foolish penalty, currently running at 65% chance it seems :-/ 😦 …

    I think we dominate and win .. The big call… Stoke will focus on Ozil, there will thus be about 4 yellows as we retaliate.. This will really piss off Mesut who will either:

    A. Score his first
    B. Assist (1st or 2nd) every goal

    In response.. Oh, and OG gets one, I think he likes it a bit rough… Or draws a penalty..

    Cheers — jgc

  28. geoffchase says:


    Good point on Flamini. I noted same/similar. In fact, both he and Arteta have similar I noted styles. We see Flamini more because he is more vocal and has, how shall is say it, more momentum in the tackle.

    I think you will see them quite strictly rotated as both are relatively older to run so much, and that will keep both at top form. They are both also in very much “kick me” positions given how we play with Ozil.. You may see both when Ozil is rested too…

    I’d note that both are old enough and experienced enough to handle such without losing form or patience. Will help that good chemistry along..

    Cheers — jgc

  29. geoffchase says:


    That would be me. I think this years EPL is going to be much closer. In our predictions page I think I put something like 7 pts from first to fifth or even sixth . So, we could compete for it, and likely won’t be alone.

    Key issues. For us it’s avoiding injuries, for you I think it’s how well you gel. Odd team(s) out? Looking more like Pool or perhaps even City not getting all the pieces going.. But it’s very early days…

    Cheers — jgc

  30. oz gunner says:

    thanks Fozzie B. Let’s hit them hard early so we can rest a few senior players and give a youngins a chance.

    Will be back to comment jgc and gerry in a bit.

  31. Rohan says:

    @ozgunner : totally agree, by no means is monreal slow, but like you say it’s relative to gibbs.I don’t however think he possesses the pace to bomb up like gibbs. Also after gibbs’ damn near MOTM performance against marseille i don’t think it would be fair to drop him.
    Ideally i think we will give Gibbs 50-60 mins by which point we’re hopefully up by a couple of goals, then i’d like to see Ryo and Monreal come on the left with ryo’s presence allowing monreal to play as a fullback rather than a defensive winger.
    Miyachi really excites me and a counter attack consisting of him, walcott and ozil threading passes is a delicious prospect.

  32. Prince says:

    Awesome pre-match as always, Oz.

    I have a feeling that Tommi gun will start. I know i said that last game, and ill probably continue to predict it, but eventually ill get it right. 😉 It may actually be a good game for him to get back. With Stokes attack, currently, as blunt as a butter knife and Crouch being no speedy gonzalez, it kinda makes sense for Kozz to get a breather and maybe think about polishing up his tackling. Dont get me wrong, he has been fantastic for us but some of his errors may have costed us in games where it really counts and for me personally i dont want any of our players believing that they are a shoe in unless its on their own merits, and competition can only be good.

    What is your prediction?
    the Arse by 2 goals. (maybe 3-1)

    Theo or Giroud…who will score?
    Both, and Ozil to pop his Emirates cherry.

    Will we shut down their set piece game?
    Im afraid not Oz. At the moment, i have confidence in our defence, but our achilles heel is set pieces and zonal marking? If Giroud has a BIG game ala hotspews derby, than maybe we could grind out a clean sheet.

    @Glic, Redders, hope your both well, its been too long 🙂

    Im offski for a bit of a lie down…….splitting headache is what i have. This current foreman ive been working for is a bit of a tool, i think he forgot to take his tampon out.


  33. Dylan says:

    Thanks Oz. 🙂 4 AP classes is a lot of work. 😉 I’m hoping to get GTA V today and I will definitely be getting fifa on Tuesday. 🙂

  34. TotalArsenal says:

    Morning all, OGAAT HET? 🙂

    Some great comments overnight and in the morning and Il Oz Postino can be proud about his pre-match report. Top stuff buddy. 🙂

    Oz, picture now inserted – another gem by the way.

    Gerry, not sure why you quoted me on Flamini v Arteta debate, as I think I have highlighted on many occasion the importance of Flamini in our team (see BK predictions 🙂 ). Flamini works his socks off and is key to our team. As a team we do sit back too much during periods of the game, and I would like to see if this will still be the case if and when Arteta returns; that’s all buddy! 🙂

    Hey Prince Pod

    Hope your headache disappears soon. 🙂

    Hey Rohan,

    Nice to see you on BK 🙂

    Loving the big win predictions by you guys, but let’s remember that Pool fans would have done the same prior to their Saints game…. look what happened.

    I predict a tough game with hopefully a win for the good guys. But then JGC believes all Dutch people are stiffies hahaha 🙂 😉

    UTA OGAAT oi oi oi 😛

  35. alexgunners says:


    Great pre match post. Thanks for all your hard work as usual.
    I believe that Theo and OG will score (Here’s to hoping anyway). I do think it will be a close encounter of the ORC kind. I do believe that we will come out on top but just.

    I just hope that we can just give it our all and win this game We have been great away from home and i hope we can replicate that form. Definitely OGAAT but here is our opportunity to beat a bunch of C#NT$ at home and we need to do that.

  36. geoffchase says:


    Dylan, it’s called “suffering appropriately”! 🙂

    TA, umm, you know that doesn’t translate well in American English? 🙂 … Aside from which I’d have used dour, like the weather.. IMO, the Dutch are well-behaved, but misplaced celts from Scotland…

    Still Arsenal by 2 we won’t lay back too much if stoke park the bus especially..

    All, I’ll be online begging for a stream if the bloody pub decides another game is moe interesting… Sigh…

    Cheers — jgc

  37. Prince says:

    Hi Total. Cheers, an Arsenal win always eases the pain……fingers crossed, although i think i should be fine. 🙂

    @HH, Usually under the circumstances i would put out my hand and say “commiserations” but i dont know you or your better half so i put out my hand and say “congratulations”.
    All the best and may this new journey of yours lead you to a full team of Arsenal supporting ‘bambinos’……….well maybe not a full team, but you know what i mean. God Bless mate

  38. alexgunners says:

    Confirmed Line Up against ORCS

    Starting XI: Szczesny, Sagna, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Gibbs, Flamini, Wilshere, Ramsey, Walcott, Ozil, Giroud

    Subs: Viviano, Jenkinson, Vermaelen, Arteta, Monreal, Bendtner, Gnabry

  39. James Bond says:

    ah, Bongo i also said that i hope Spuds finish 2nd because that can only mean we finished 1st by a single point and won the PL 😉

    no worries @ OZ – it’s was worth a try, ha

    let me know if you need a decent stream @ JGC or 17HT.

  40. Prince says:

    Thanks Alex. How are you mate?

  41. alexgunners says:


    All is well, just have been extremely busy lately with work and have been working out of Melbourne so not much time to stay in touch with anyone.

    How have you been?

  42. James Bond says:

    ah, predictions


    theo/giroud/ OoooooooooooOOOOooZil first goal.

  43. oz gunner says:

    @ Gerry

    thank you for the great reply, a joy to read as always.

    Gibbs has been going great, I love Gibbs though and I think he is our best LB. I’m just worried about him over doing it because he has a woeful injury record! Personally I do think Nacho is better defensively (especially against slower players), against the quicker wingers not so much. But nacho’s experience makes him better defensively I feel.

    Arnautović i don’t think will start. I think it’ll be crouch or jones.

    @ Jgc

    Thank you for taking the time to respond as well. Your knowledge on training principles and rest/recovery intrigues me a lot.

    I hope Ozil escapes from N’zonzi. 3rd game…i hope he breaks it open!

    @ Bongo

    Welcome back, i was wondering if we were going to see you drop in again. Thank you for giving us a balanced spurs perspective

    @ PPP

    Pull his head in. You don’t want him giving you headaches when Arsenal are playing!!!

    I hope we can hold them scoreless. I love the free role Giroud has for defensive set pieces. I really enjoyed seeing Andy Carroll do it when he played at Newcastle. He just went for everything and made it really hard. I expect the same from Giroud with his frame and size.

    I like the call on Tommy Gun. I wouldn’t be surprised at all seeing him start.

    @ TA

    cheers, i just hate shawcross so much so any attempt to make fun of him needs to be shown 🙂

    @ Alex

    cheers, I hope for our health it isn’t a close one. I still have nightmares from away games against stoke, delap throwing the ball, and wet conditions. It was like slow and painful torture.

    Hope all is going well with the baby…not long now.

    @ Rohan

    If ryo develops that would be very mouthwatering! 2 speedsters…ozil conducting…beautiful

  44. oz gunner says:

    I’m really excited to see what Bendtner could bring to the table this season!!!

    He’s “like a new signing” 🙂

  45. alexgunners says:

    Damn Delap!!! It was torture but i think it is time for the good guys to defeat the orcs.

    Definitely not long now OZ, All is well. Thanks mate

  46. Dylan says:

    I have no issue with Bendtner back with the team and on the bench IF he really does intend to work hard for the team and stay out of the papers (for the wrong reasons). If he does, I’ll be more than happy to take him back.

  47. Fozzie B says:

    Walcott out Gnabry starts!!! I’m happy and sad at the same time!! Go for it Gnabry link up with your Germam brethren Ozil!!

  48. alexgunners says:

    Here is a link to show the importance of a World Class player at our club after losing so many over the years.


  49. Prince says:

    Oz, im not looking forward to Bendnter. I keep getting flashbacks of that 1 on 1 miss against Barca to put us through and have a genuine shot at old big ears. I know every striker has his day or an off day but like my old man said at the time “under the circumstances, the self proclaimed great one deserved a straight red just for that miss. Its like he had two left feet”
    I just hope big Giroo can keep this rich vein of form and health to keep us purring through to January at least and then beyond.

    Alex, im good mate. Looking forward to the game. Not long now. Good to hear things are ticking along at your end.


  50. alexgunners says:


    What happened to THEO???

  51. Dylan says:

    The week I buy Theo to replace Santi in my fantasy team he gets sick 10 minutes before the game?!?!?!?!

  52. Prince says:

    Jinx!! haha

  53. Fozzie B says:

    Hi Alex he’s got that illness that the german lads had! 😦

  54. alexgunners says:




  55. oz gunner says:

    you causing trouble fozzie? 🙂

    @ Alex

    glad to hear it!

    @ PPP

    I try and forget that miss. I really liked him back in the day though. I told all my mates at school that he was the next big thing when he was on loan at birmingham..he must have heard me 🙂

  56. Alcide says:

    Oz, outstanding prematch,

    What is your prediction?

    Theo or Giroud…who will score?
    Theo and Ramsey

    Will we shut down their set piece game?
    Yes, but with a few scares!


  57. oz gunner says:

    bugger, oh well Gnabry has a chance now and he’s been on fire

  58. oz gunner says:

    cheers Alcide

  59. oz gunner says:


  60. oz gunner says:

    YESSS!!!!!! Ramsey again!!!!!!!

  61. alcide says:


  62. alexgunners says:


  63. 17highburyterrace says:


  64. Prince says:

    😯 ZIL gives Ramsey a beautiful present!

  65. 17highburyterrace says:

    Goood morning…..

  66. alcide says:

    Asmir giving us a bit for once…

  67. Rohan says:

    Guys i’m coming out!, I think I love ramsey.

  68. Dylan says:

    Unreal! Rambo is not human! 😀

  69. Prince says:

    Morning/Evening 17

  70. oz gunner says:

    Morning 17.

    Next statue…RAMSEY!!!!

  71. oz gunner says:

    Keep your mitts off Rohan..he’s mine!!! 🙂

  72. Prince says:

    😆 Oz

  73. 17highburyterrace says:

    Morning boys…5:30 am kickoff here…

    I’m having trouble believing that Rambo is such a Johnny on the spot and that his shots keep going in…

    I love it, however…

    More please….

  74. alexgunners says:

    Jack’s not looking too good

  75. oz gunner says:

    An Arsenal win…what a way to start the day 17.

  76. Prince says:

    Some would call Rambos goal scoring form, an act of genocide……

    ……..i’ll get my coat…………

  77. 17highburyterrace says:

    No he isn’t Alex…That was the latest tackle I’ve seen for a while…

    Gnabry happy on the ball it appears and roving the pitch.

    Lotsa gimpy players early on…

  78. oz gunner says:

    Commentators: “Wilshere invited the challenge” “wilshere goes down too easy at times” piss off. All the players who dive and they have a go at Jack. Almost mute time

    @ PPP

    hahahaha brilliant

  79. alexgunners says:


    It’s amazing the dribble that comes out of their mouth at times. Inviting the challenge. What a F@$KING IDIOT

  80. Prince says:

    “She invited the rape because she dressed sexy” 🙄

  81. oz gunner says:

    What did they feed Gnabry when he was younger? It’s one big unit.

  82. Prince says:

    I hope he is still eating what ever it is. Move over HULK

  83. 17highburyterrace says:

    I’ve got Stuart Robson doing the color (colour?) commentary… Is there anybody who hates us more?…

    Jack does look very slow into challenges…As if he can’t make his body do what his mind tells it to do… (Hope I’m wrong, of course….)

    We’re a bit static and Ozil’s been a bit off. It’ll come, I think….

  84. Prince says:

    I dont like that we back off after a goal, know matter how much confidence they have in the counter attacking tactics. Save that for a two goal cushion i say

  85. Prince says:

    *no matter

  86. oz gunner says:

    agree PPP. Ride the confidence and don’t let them settle into their defensive groove!

  87. oz gunner says:

    jesus gnabry just bundled over Huth!!!

  88. alcide says:

    Gnabry playing with confidence, doing good so far

  89. geoffchase says:

    Anyone got a stream.. Anderlecht is more important here… jgc

  90. 17highburyterrace says:


  91. oz gunner says:

    Fricken hell. ridiculous getting caught out there

  92. alexgunners says:

    As you said, if you dont keep applying pressure, you invite pressure.
    Damn Orcs


  93. Prince says:

    Of course, he has to hit the rebound perfectly 🙄 FFS

  94. 17highburyterrace says:

    Poor…confusion on the defensive rotation after the Gibbs was caught out…And now Jones should’ve had a one v one…

    At sea, need to settle…

  95. oz gunner says:

    that was top notch from Giroud, get in there and win it back!!!

  96. oz gunner says:

    god i thought BFG had that going in

  97. 17highburyterrace says:

    Giroud has woken…What’s short Serge doing as our guy closest to goal on the corner?…

  98. 17highburyterrace says:

    Finally a call our way…Shawcross trying to undress the hunky one? Corner now….

  99. 17highburyterrace says:


  100. alexgunners says:

    BFG, YOU BEAUTY!!!!!

  101. 17highburyterrace says:

    Big headed whiff by Kos 2-1

  102. oz gunner says:

    Got that one!!!!!

  103. alexgunners says:

    Now keep pressing these orc bastards

  104. geoffchase says:


    Just in time for BFG,!!?

  105. alcide says:

    Hehe so much for Stoke’s set pieces

  106. Prince says:

    great work Flamster

  107. Prince says:

    Another goal to kill it off before half time?………… Yes please.

  108. oz gunner says:

    @ Jgc

    will have to get you on to wiziwig and sopcast. The quality is heaps better and it barely freezes. Far more reliable

  109. 17highburyterrace says:

    Nice from Ozil but for the final pass…Gnabry taking the FK after earning the foul…Impressive…

    We’re still a little slow on the passing tempo, I think. Jones and Per down after the clash of heads…

  110. Prince says:

    Hes made of concrete. Our very own pillar of strength, our BFG!!!!

  111. Prince says:

    No one is moving off the ball. hmm

  112. oz gunner says:

    Giroud’s hold up play has been exceptional today

  113. Prince says:

    Agreed Oz. He has become vital to our machine. Hope Arsene adresses the lack of movement

  114. 17highburyterrace says:

    Jack is really having a tough outing…Physically we seem up for it…Giroud really doing a job. If Ozil passes start finding the mark, look out… Pitch almost looks a bit sticky. Just a bit more tempo so that we’re not just a set-piece outfit….


  115. ProudGooner says:

    So far Rambo is MOTM again he was defo the man of the 1st half. I think the Stoke goal was a well needed reminder not to take there foot of the gas as we sometimes do when we score early.

  116. Prince says:

    If Gnabry timed his run better i reckon his shot would have caused damage and Ozil would have been up to 3 assists on his home debut…………Oh someone told me he is only 24 and that he signed with us for 5 years. 😀

    Joachim Loew(?) at the Ems, no doubt checking up on his star….Serge Gnabry

  117. proudgooner says:

    Is Rambo the new Welsh wizard of the premier league? Before it was Giggs, then Bale took the main Welshman but for me that title now belongs to Rambo 😉

  118. geoffchase says:


    many thanks.. this link is general for finding games?

    Im new at this as in NZ this is middle of night so… very hard..

    cheers — jgc

  119. proudgooner says:

    here is a great link it has been perfect for me…………..

  120. geoffchase says:


    Agreed, OG has looked solid… IMO, 17, re tough time.. I think it is more that Stoke are really compressing the working area in the final third. Goals on the ground will more likely come from 2-3 quick passes starting at midfield or even our own end .. give them time to gt back and they really compress and shrink the field … very tough to find a way through that..

    cheers — jgc

  121. proudgooner says:

    try that link lads it did not freeze once and is clear as can be

  122. 17highburyterrace says:

    Seems to me that we’re a bit clogged in the center of the pitch and, esp. missing the threat of Theo’s runs from out wide. On the other side Jack wanting to always cut in also hurts. Ramsey, however, is really industrious in moving out to fill those spaces. Very nice…

    2nd period started…

  123. geoffchase says:

    First goal matters!

    — jgc

  124. alexgunners says:

    GNABRY has one helluva shot

  125. oz gunner says:

    @ Jgc

    yeah more often than not they’ll have the game. If you ever need streams try a site called:

    it has multiple streams all piled together.

    Midweek i’ll go through the sopcast program with you. It’ll make things X1000 times better for you

  126. geoffchase says:

    Stoke pressing forcing a more long ball game… 😦

  127. 17highburyterrace says:

    Stoke actually trying to play football…We look comfortable defending and playing on the break…Need better from Giroud to get our 3rd…

  128. geoffchase says:

    When they get back stoke are doing well at giving nothing…

  129. oz gunner says:

    bloody good save there

    Huth you dirty sod!!!!

  130. geoffchase says:

    Like that!

  131. 17highburyterrace says:

    Feed Ozil there, big fella! Gnabry hurt?

  132. geoffchase says:

    Hutch should be gone .. To professional…

  133. oz gunner says:

    that was a good old fashioned shirt front. If it was aussie rules i’d be proud of that hit on gnabry

  134. Rohan says:

    shocked by the lack of yellow cards for stoke players

  135. geoffchase says:

    Too much pressure… We will/should get the third..

  136. alcide says:

    Good defensive work from Gnabry since the beginning.

  137. oz gunner says:

    @ Rohan

    always the way in tough contests. We get fouled repeatedly yet somehow we’ll probably finish with more yellows. It happened to song all the time

  138. geoffchase says:


  139. alexgunners says:

    OG, doing everything right except for the shot on goal


  140. 17highburyterrace says:

    Better from Jack to lead one break and find Giroud on another…

    Big fella working hard but shots not coming off…

  141. geoffchase says:

    Stoke are pressing we WILL get the third… jgc

  142. geoffchase says:

    Vanbrugh showing mongrel mad some size! Presence! .. Young tho..

  143. geoffchase says:

    Gnabry!? Bloody ipad..

  144. oz gunner says:

    hughes looks like he’s going to break in to tears everytime he shouts something.

    agree, i think we’ll score off the counter very soon, they are playing in to our hands

  145. geoffchase says:

    Ooof, Ozil!

  146. oz gunner says:

    come on he should be closed down. Can’t let them have cheap shots from there!!!

  147. alcide says:

    Yep, time for a third one.

  148. 17highburyterrace says:

    Nice Giroud-jack combo but Ozil shot was tame…

    SCSZ saves well and we defend the corner…Looking comfortable playing with the lead, but I’d still like a 3rd…

  149. geoffchase says:

    Commentator good point that Gnabry stronger on D then Theo.. Right too I think… Perfect choice for Orcs?

  150. 17highburyterrace says:

    Geezus—Robson all over Jack for diving and AW for complaining…A**hole…

  151. alexgunners says:


    This is great for Gnabry. He has grabbed his opportunity and done well on both ends of the field

  152. oz gunner says:

    “those who know jack wilshere know he goes down 3/4 times a game…unsurprisingly Arsene is speaking to the fourth official. Didn’t see him say anything when flamini went in two footed (except he was nowhere near the player he did it to get to the ball first)”

    God he does not like Jack or Arsenal one bit.

  153. geoffchase says:

    17, I’m gonna give that shot every time as a defender. Off direct on goal and moving wider so has to come across.. Perfect perfect shot scores. Rest are easy… Good defending and no sweat for Scz..

  154. oz gunner says:

    agreed all things Gnabry. great showing by the young lad. Very happy

  155. oz gunner says:

    why would stoke bring on defensive midfielder (ex-spud reject) palacious when they are chasing the game. Well done hughes, just glad it’s not pennant

  156. Prince says:

    Errrr, our passing starting to look lazy…fatigue?? Red Zone??

  157. geoffchase says:

    Ramsey and JW holding to long… Faster ball will work with our skil sets..

  158. oz gunner says:

    YESSSSSSSS!!! Bacary!!!!!!!!

  159. geoffchase says:

    Agreed Prince!

  160. 17highburyterrace says:


  161. alexgunners says:


    We really needed that 3rd Goal

  162. geoffchase says:


    Jgc-damus will point out his earlier call of Ozzil assisting all.. 😛

    For now — jgc

  163. Prince says:

    Sanga Yesss!!! Baby baby…thatswhatimtalkinabouuuuutttttttttttttttttttttt. Ozil a hat-trick of assists on his home debut


  164. 17highburyterrace says:

    Ryo, Nacho on, Jack, Serge off…

  165. alcide says:

    Hehehe BS… So how is that for shutting them down on set pieces!

  166. geoffchase says:

    Perfect time to pull Gnabry… Great outing, keep it that way..

  167. oz gunner says:

    come on ryo.

    3 assists for Ozil, good for my booing team.

  168. oz gunner says:

    jgc-damus strikes again!!!

  169. geoffchase says:

    Can immediately see Ryo isnt Gnabry.. Tentative, less physical.. Fronts but doesn’t press in defense.. More like Theo..

  170. alexgunners says:

    OZ, you asked for him, you got him


  171. Prince says:

    Ill second that OZ

  172. geoffchase says:

    You must have an iPad Oz… Booing team?!? 😀

  173. Hi all :),

    Even when Ozil isn’t at his best, he still delivers 3 assists LOL!

  174. 17highburyterrace says:

    HH!! Happy nuptials…

    Loving the Ozil….Guess we’re a set piece team these days… 😆

  175. alexgunners says:

    Hi HH,

    Congratulations are in order

  176. AB says:

    Robin van judas injured!! Ha! about time too…..

  177. geoffchase says:


    you’re here and the rare Zorro coming in… Coincidence?!? 😀

  178. oz gunner says:

    haha oops, not ipad…just mental disabilities 🙂

    shit HH has been let off his leash 🙂 welcome back. Ozil worth every penny for sure

  179. alcide says:

    Arteta in!

  180. geoffchase says:


    And best regards on the events…

  181. Highbury Harmony says:

    Alex and 17ht, thank you very much for the kind words :).

  182. oz gunner says:

    arteta, bendy, vermaelen…the squad is building!!!!

  183. 17highburyterrace says:

    Flamini too (worth every penny, I think…) Ozil off, Arteta on…

  184. Highbury Harmony says:

    GC, thank you for the best regards both here and on the UMF page mate!

  185. alcide says:

    What a joy to see him back…

  186. geoffchase says:

    Commentators think Ozil hasn’t done great here

    Maybe so by some metrics but at 3 assists .. I’ll take below average every game please! 🙂

  187. henrychan says:

    Mesziill.. is booming.. 3 assist.. he is my motm.. for sure..
    One more goal.. and I hope Ozil score..

  188. oz gunner says:

    good stuff HH. long may the love continue

  189. alexgunners says:


    With everyone coming back, its just a matter of managing the team and selecting the right players. The squad morale is high and the fight is definitely there.


  190. xavier says:

    Arsenal scoring from 3 set piece. Did anyone see this one coming??? Kudos to the script writer though.

  191. geoffchase says:

    Announcers, mark Hughes only first or second to manage five EPL clubs… Umm, that’s a GOOD thing?

  192. geoffchase says:


    No worries.. Am missing JB to augment my (ahem) clever comments. So, how’s your new wife adapting to being married to Zorro?

    Seriously, he’s wishes, and have children before you’re 39 if you want some advice… 😀

  193. Highbury Harmony says:

    Cheers OZ, thank you for the wishes 🙂

  194. geoffchase says:

    Stoke are seriously flailing..

  195. geoffchase says:


    I’m going to say it.. I not only want a 4th for OG but Shawcross is OGs b****h in the air!!

  196. alexgunners says:

    A 4th would be great.
    Shawcross is not only OG’s Bitch, he is a bitch in general

  197. oz gunner says:

    beyond me how he’s not managing under 10’s on sunday mornings. Has he ever done a good job?

    @ Alex

    agreed, definitely need to manage the squad. exciting times. Amazing what ozil has done for team and supporter morale

  198. Highbury Harmony says:

    This game is over, happy to get the three points on a day where the pace of play was not really in our favour. Always happy to beat these orcs too!!!

  199. Prince says:

    Mark Hughes is Wengers BIATCH 😆

  200. oz gunner says:

    ryo is lightening. Ryo and gnabry…just what the doctor ordered

  201. alexgunners says:


    Well said, same applies, He is just generally a bitch

  202. 17highburyterrace says:

    Ramsey really feeling it…dealt well with pass behind him…

    OG a real physical force compared to faking injury so much a year ago…

    Indeed, HH, tempo was slow today…I think the threat of Theo was missed, though Gnabry looks just fine…

    3-1 all set pieces vs the Orcs? Strange, but I’ll take it…

  203. alexgunners says:


    Time to call it a night. Great win, great fight and may it continue.

    Good night to all you guys


  204. 17highburyterrace says:

    Night night Alex…

    Lots of physical commitment today if not quite the free flowing stuff we might all crave… Ozil movement makes you want the same from everybody…

    Results first, I think….

  205. oz gunner says:

    night alex, enjoy your week

  206. geoffchase says:

    Many thanks again Oz.. When you’re awake, I’ve bookmarked the place and wiziwig… That link is more “general” to find sports? Was good stream!

    Cheers — jgc

  207. proudgooner says:

    Massive 3 points again, Top of the league 🙂
    RVP is injured it is a lovely day.

  208. Prince says:

    Night Alex. Im gonna tuck it in too. Thanks for the company guys. I also predicted 3-1, should have put a tenner on it.

    Night all. WE ARE TOP OF THE LEAGUE!!!!!!!! 😆 😆 😆

  209. henrychan says:

    We are the champion my friend… We gonna fighting till the end.. We are the champion.. We are the champion.. no time for loser cause We are the champion.. of the world..

    I believe.. We will sing this song more and more.. hehe..

    Nice game.. We can scores with set play also.. Meszill.. on fire.. booom.. hahha..

  210. alcide says:

    OG missed a few things today (pass behind to Rambo, he shot where he could/should have slided the ball to Ö, but again fantastic work rate, and he showed Shacross and Huth what being manhandled feels like, and that is priceless 🙂

  211. oz gunner says:

    not a problem at all Jgc. The nutjob link normally has a few different streams going at once but more often than not they have Arsenal on there. Sometimes though it can be a tough indifferent. wiziwig offers 10+ different flash streams but also offers ‘sopcast’ streams that require a small program to play (free). Get that going and you’re laughing (you can also record the game so it downloads straight to your com). I’m going to have a look at this other thing that has come out recently, the quality is supposed to be excellent…i’ll keep you posted

  212. proudgooner says:

    Well done Prince 3-1 is the score mate, i do well with 3-1 bets

  213. oz gunner says:

    Night PPP, have a good one. I better duck off for some shut eye too. 3 Aussies going to bed at once…nothing sus there, I swear we live in different states 🙂

    Enjoy the rest of your Sunday all.


  214. alcide says:

    Hehe Prince, I believe Goonerholic on the eponymous blog was eyeing 3-1 @ 12:1. He must be having a good day 🙂

  215. proudgooner says:

    I will sing the champions song with you, but you have to promise to dress up like freddie mercury in the vest and tash, doing the guiter strumming

  216. proudgooner says:

    What odds did you get prince?

  217. alcide says:

    So not a good day for Dean, this win is seriously messing up his stats, good thing there was no penalty to give us!

  218. proudgooner says:

    So now we want spurs to lose and city and united to draw and it a perfect weekend on the football front, oh plus loads of injuries to all 3 teams. rvp is already injured what a shame.

  219. geoffchase says:


    Many thanks… Will get I to it!


    Good to hear arsenal are rewarding you with wins and more! 🙂

    Cheers — jgc

  220. henrychan says:

    ProudG.. why not brother.. hehe..
    Eventhough I don’t have that sexy body as Freddy got.. hehehe..

    Stoke was our nightmare.. and We pass it beautifuly..
    I would say.. We shall never lose again..
    Cause Arteta is back.. Soon Cazorla also (Wenger said so).. hehe..

  221. proudgooner says:

    henrychan,good man ha ha ha i bet you are sexier the freddie dont be shy ha ha ha.
    oh my goodness kompany just pulled rooneys turburn off, rooney was not happy.

  222. alcide says:

    Oh my, ManU is taking a serious beating… And they look clueless on the pitch.

  223. geoffchase says:


    An understatement… 2-0 at half our shot 13-1!!! Then 2 shots into second it’s 4-0…. Geez, something’s broken there and City clicking..

  224. alcide says:

    Nasri bossing it… Fellaini, we’ll I can’t believe that at some point, I was hoping we’d triggered his 23.7m clause… Makes Flamini the deal if the year.

  225. proudgooner says:

    That is a good point about Flemini, it really was a great deal, it could well be the deal of a season. He is proving to be a great part of the team again.
    united glory days are numbered , i just hope city don’t get a strong run in after this result.

  226. proudgooner says:

    spurs are still nil nil lol

  227. TotalArsenal says:

    I watched the game with a friend of mine who is recovering from intense cancer treatment. Puts it all in perspective really. 😕

    Really pleased with the win and with the team performance in general. Catch you later.

  228. alcide says:

    93min goal from spurs makes us share the top spot in the league, 2 points clear from other teams…

  229. proudgooner says:

    no way 6 mins in injury time spurs score 1 – 0 spurs

  230. alcide says:

    I thin they feel safe in our shadow (+1GD)

    Hi TA, I wish your friend the best recovery.

  231. proudgooner says:

    sad times TA, wishing your friend some good news. hope he gets well soon.

  232. TotalArsenal says:

    Cheers guys 🙂

    PG you predicted 3-1 right? Well done SIR! (and JGC of course, although he presented us with a number of options). 🙂

  233. geoffchase says:

    jgc-damus knows statistics! 🙂

    That said, he also called Ozil to score or assist all goals – if only barely, jgc-damus should put money on his calls like PG!? 🙂

    Best wishes for your friend!

    Cheers — jgc sans damus

  234. oz gunner says:

    all the best for your friend TA.

    bloody Tottenham!

  235. TotalArsenal says:

    New Post New Post 🙂

    Dylan has written today’s match report and he has even added player ratings! 🙂

  236. AFC says:

    Di Canio gone!!!

    Sunderland have parted with Di Canio; just announced on MOTD.

    That was one of predictions as well in TA’s predictions post. 😀

  237. TotalArsenal says:

    Really gone AFC? Probably a wise decision by the Sunderland management. Thanks for the predictions reference! 🙂

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