Plucky, Plucky Arsenal – Szczesny, Koz and Mertesacker win us three points


I missed the first 25 minutes or so of today’s top;three game the Saints. So apparently, I missed our best period of football; but I don’t mind as I liked what I saw in the 65 remaining minutes of the game.

A clean sheet, a mature performance, scoring the second goal to kill off any remaining threat, and looking in control for most of the game was music to my eyes. How long have we been waiting for this sort of maturity: not playing well in terms of attacking football but just being able to see a game out professionally? That is what champions-to-be need.

I thought as a team we worked well, even though one or two individual performances were not at their usual level. But the real strength of a team is measured by its ability to compensate for any individual blips in form, and today we saw good evidence of just that.

You have to give some credit to Southampton, though. It takes some guts to come to the Emirates and just play their football, and at times they dominated us with very good combination and pressing football. In the end, two avoidable mistakes cost them badly and luckily they had these against us…. The Chavs will face a determined, highly motivated team – of that I have no doubt.

Being totally honest about our performance, I felt our midfield missed some necessary cohesion and fluency in their passing. We have some distance to go in terms of getting the likes of Cazorla, Ozil, Arteta, Ramsey and Wilshere to fully gel with each other. But the good thing is we have a solid defence, and against a team like Southampton we naturally sit back a bit more and keep things solid. At home this is not a bad thing as it makes us less vulnerable to counterattacks. In away games we do this regularly and it’s one of the reasons we have done so well on our travels.

Our back-five performance was very impressive and something special is growing between these players. All have made progress this season, even the wily Sagna. And all five players have both strengths and one or two weaknesses, but somehow they have found a way of maximizing their combined strengths and minimizing the weaknesses.

BFG slowness and lack of ‘turnability’ is compensated for by Sagna and Koz’s speed and last-ditch tackling ability. Koz’s occasional hot-headedness needs the BFG’s organisational and calming skills, etc etc.

But special praise should go to the triangle of Szczesny, Koz and Mertesacker, who were as good as impenetrable today. Arteta did not have one of his best games against the Saints, but neither was he awful.  Nevertheless, Koz and Mertesacker coped very well with any threat through the middle, which is considerable as there is a lot of strength in Southampton’s midfield.


The team playing deep really seems to suit Koz and Mertesacker, and if they are in control it really helps Szczesny to stay calm and composed as well. I reckon, other than the hard work of the entire team, that’s what won us the game today. They also worked well together when defending corners and free-kicks which was good to see.

If we are going to win the league we will need a solid defence – a solid back five really – and the boys did us proud today. And I reckon there is still more to come.

It is great to see the team bounce back from the Manure defeat straightaway, and that despite not having had much time together during the latest interlull.

Three more points and a more solid position at the top, and plenty of evidence that this team has backbone and belief. Bring on the Frenchies – OGAAT! 🙂

Written by: TotalArsenal.

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95 Responses to Plucky, Plucky Arsenal – Szczesny, Koz and Mertesacker win us three points

  1. James Bond says:

    nice one , TA – unfortunately you did miss the 2 best bits of skills by both our future midfield core – Ramsey and Wilshere, what confidence by both and how unlucky for both of them to not score

    yes, our back 5 are playing superbly well but i feel that we are still not playing our best or anywhere near we can and yet we’re winning games .

    i am fully expecting us to peak in December and show everyone how good we really are , so if i were man city, chelsea waiting to play us in december, i be really scared right now.

    the ozil and theo partnership for me is the most lethal one we have, as soon as theo came on, ozil played a couple of delicious passes to theo but unfortunately he was subbed soon after – let us play Theo for 60 minutes vs Marseille this tuesday and i’m confident he will score or create a few goals for the team.

    Giroud, what a performance that was today – seems plenty fresh to me

    our bench keeps getting stronger and stronger, will be even more stronger with JW on the bench on tuesday with Rosicky starting – special mention to Rosicky, he came on for Arteta and boy, did he try to move the game forward at a brisk speed or what ?

    hope Arteta is ok though and it was nothing more than just a precaution.

  2. James Bond says:

    oh i forgot to do my 3 positives and 3 negatives :

    negatives first :

    1- The chemistry of Santi/Ozil still needs time to get better and develop, so my negative for today is Santi – he seems to be playing with a hand brake on

    3: we seem to be lacking a player that is willing to take a shot on from outside the box, we are becoming too predictable with teams expecting us to come in the box, trying to find that fancy pass before shooting – we gotta keep them guessing and surprise them sometimes with a few long range efforts on target – Theo tried one but it was from the edge of the box, we need more of that

    5: ARTETA – he was really poor today and i have been saying it from quite sometime now as has JGC as well, we have to find and get a replacement for him in the longer term, he at best has another 18 months at such level or less – can give you the 20-25 after that but not at such intensity i don’t feel, so in a way it’s good that we have Flamini – don’t get me wrong, Arteta the passer is really good but we got to start planning, instead of a striker we gotta make the DM our top priority.

    Positives :

    1: Giroud – nuff said

    3: Jack wilshere – more game time, more time to get his confidence back and he did a decent job even though most of us were surprised by his inclusion over Gnabry, theo and rosicky – the lad delivered and came through without getting a yellow card ( he needs one more yellow to be suspended like Flamini i think).

    5: our hunger – we fight for each other and we fight as a group, that is something which is priceless

  3. Domhuail says:

    Nice resume TA and as always both fair and realistic. It is hard to believe that Podolski, Diaby, Walcott, The Ox, Sanogo and Ryo are all still to contribute much this season and that we have players like Gnabry, Eisfeld, Zalalem and Akpom biding their time in the wings! I don’t see AW bringing any strikers in this January but as usual, he CAN surprise us.

  4. allezkev says:

    Interesting view on the game Total.
    Tbh, despite some very impressive and quite technical approach play from Southampton, at no time did I think we would concede…
    There is a confidence and resolution about this Arsenal team, that I haven’t seen for a long long time.
    I love our midfield, it’s fluidity, it’s combinations, they play some breathless one touch football, whilst our defence is Scrooge like… Giroud put in a great shift once again…
    Thoroughly enjoyed the game…

  5. TotalArsenal says:

    Cheers jambon 🙂

    Interesting positives and negatives.

    I am all for a new DM but more as cover for either Arteta or Flamini. Agreed on the partnership between Santi and Ozil needing to develop and this is down to both of them. Cazorla will get there and he is a great player to have in the team, and once he hits form the team will even better.

  6. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi Domhuail 🙂

    Yes the squad is deeper than many believe it is and yet we need a player who can replace the role of Giroud in the team, if and when required. His ability to play with his back to the goal and hold up play is soooo vital for the team, and I am not sure anyone can do it like him. Maybe Sanogo…. or Akpom…. 😕

  7. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi Allezkev 🙂

    Yes when it works out in midfield it is superb to watch. I like a bit more dominance at times and I reckon there is still a bit of work to be done to get our midfielders to properly gel…

  8. geoffchase says:

    Hi TA et al

    Some thoughts…

    A. Re Arteta: I’m mostly with JB. I don’t think he’s lost it, AND he seems the type to last. That said, and it’s where TA and I sometimes clash, but e best players do t always make the best team. Somehow, especially sans Flamini, he doesn’t fit. Color me surprised as he’s adaptable and talented, but there it is… So, IMO, we need to figure how he fits, or more accitately, AW does.. IMO, right now, Flam + AR or TR is a major improvement in cohesion and purpose in both directions for some reason. I should reiterate that this is in NO way a criticism of Arteta but somehow fit isn’t there.

    That said, a solid game like Soton where we do t look like conceding is a good game to find that cohesion.

    B. Agree also that Santi is still fitting in. Same will eventually be true for Theo and Ox..

    –> we’ve a lot to go in improving midfield! which is great news as we are already tops!

    C. Per my bits on fatigue, was OG refreshed or not, with those two or three extra, or just quicker, steps? 🙂

    D. TA will hate it, but lying a little deeper favors Merts and Koz so IMO we will see more. In TAs favor or for his favor we got another clean sheet!

    E. Many pundits say we were gifted the game. True for goal one tho we were unlucky to hit woodwork twice before. However, goal 2 was FORCED by BFGs good play. Little choice perhaps was felt by the defender. That’s pressure and forcing the game, not a gift.. When your penalty comes for forcing he other side into a no win choice, that’s not a gift… In this case the matchup forced it IMO…

    That’s all to cause trouble for now..

    Cheers — jgc

  9. oz gunner says:

    Cheers TA. I enjoyed the game. I’ve been surprised by southampton this season, and that continued yesterday. They have a very good team. Wanyama was an absolute beast. He broke up everything and didn’t allow our midfield to really click. Ward-prose whipped in dangerous balls all game, and rod was solid. I’m glad lallana was tired and lambert was off his game.

    In regards to arteta. I really like him and think he offers a lot. I just can’t help but look at wanyama though and think “wow, what could have been”. Arteta has strong positioning and is experienced, however, the attacking side of his game is non-existent now and we can do a lot better.

  10. oz gunner says:

    @ BJ

    I agree. A switched on ozil + walcott = disaster for any team. Once those two click…may god have mercy on their souls!!!

  11. Morning fellas…City vs Totts about to kick off…Another fine post, ToTL and it’s good to highlight our defensive solidity. We didn’t quite get the offense and chances flowing but we had some good spells which put them under a lot of pressure. They did well too and, like others, I was quite impressed with their play even without their best defender (Lovren) and (later) one of their best transition guys (Shaw). In the end, that it was their mistakes–rather than ours–feels pretty satisfying.

    A lot of people are keying in on the two Spaniards–Arteta and Santi and I do think they struggled. I re.-watched the first half and Arteta had 4 bad turnovers which led to their best chances. Has he gotten too used to having Flamini next to him for the quick outlet? Is there any word on his injury. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him rested for the Marseille match even though that’s one where keeping the clean sheet will make life soooo much easier…

    Whoa…City score within 15 secs…Spuds in trouble…

  12. 17highburyterrace says:

    Haha… What was I saying?… Open match up there at the other mid-east airline stadium…

    With the matches every 4 days we will need rotation in MF and attack–despite the fact that Giroud was relentless up front and well rewarded. It’s interesting that he got the goals because he looks so much happier playing with us (as opposed to his national team…) and as if he’s not under pressure to score. Wilshere (who looked far sharper…) and Ramsey put balls on the post but there was some hesitation amongst the group and some misplaced touches which stopped us in our tracks. Santi, I thought, did good work deeper in the first half and in turning the match our way from about the hour mark until he was subbed but maybe I’m an apologist for him as he is a real favorite of mine. I think he will be a big beneficiary when we have pacier threats for him to find with those awesome long balls…

    On that note, Theo looked ready to contribute in his cameo. These next few matches should give him plenty more chances… Agreed with those looking for him to feed off Ozil… The big question is who will be playing and who will sit and work in as subs. Rosicky looked good off the bench, I thought, and I like that we’ll have more game changing options there…

    Still, the focus on the defense and (our newly signed #1) seems correct. We will concede goals but I don’t see us losing heart at that end of the pitch as we might have in the past. Again we were fortunate to avoid Lovren (a set piece threat…) and that they subbed Llalana right after their most flowing move. Boruc goofs aside, So’ton are a really attractive unit and will outplay the big name teams (if they don’t bring their best…) even if they won’t score a ton of goals. For me, this was a satisfying 3 points and a good way to get going again after the break…Marseille have a bit more flair so that will be a different threat. That our quality starts at the back with a solid, coordinated defense, is something I’m really enjoying…

  13. 17highburyterrace says:

    Route is on at the Etihad…3 nil now…

    Also, Gotta agree with Oz (and others) about how strong Wanyama looked yesterday–he was missing Shaw as an attacking outlet after the latter went off hurt… For some reason, if Mourinho sticks around, I can see Chelsea buying him (for big money)…Obi Mikel has had a long, less than fully convincing run in West London and Wanyama seems a bigger, better version of that sort of player…They’ve never quite been able to replace what Makelele and Essien (pre-injury…) provided…

  14. 17highburyterrace says:

    I need an alter-ego, if not somebody to talk with…This match is over, unless Adebayor can make magic… 🙄 Spurs host United next weekend. 😯 Let’s go Cardiff so that they’re sitting happy and both United and Spurs are Tottering… I guess I can watch Juve play on the other channel…

  15. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi 17 blog-machine 🙂

    How is life treating you?

    Good to hear the Spuds are getting smashed as they started to think they have a good defence haahaha.

    Shittey are strong at home but drop points after points away, so nothing to worry about.

    I was and am one of the fans of Wanyama and, like others, thought he had a solid game – and there is plenty of growth left in him. He is so mature and solid, with good timing and overview.

  16. 17highburyterrace says:

    Hey ToTL…Have they’ve given you Sunday off… 😉

    Yeah, I had hopes that Spurs would give City a match…Wrong…Now it’s 4 nil and Nasri just hit the cross-bar…Only counts as three points no matter what the score might end up…


    I’m feeling a little “sensitive” to criticism of the team and individual players after a little looking around the web. A kid has put up a video criticizing Ozil and Wilshere after yesterday’s match. I don’t see it. Clattenburg did those boys no favors at all, I thought. Santi should’ve had a pen in the 2nd half too…

    Wilshere starting surprised a lot of folks yesterday but I like it. He and Ozil sharing space on the right seems smart to me. They’re both lefties so if they can work that area, esp. with single (or fewer) touches good things will happen. That it’s nominally Theo’s position presents an issue, but interchanging will break open lazy defenses…

    Oh poo, I missed City’s 5th…

  17. 17highburyterrace says:

    Where are my furry friends, Cockie and Fozzie? This should tickle their, er, “distaste” for Spurs while indulging their (shared) tendencies to worry about City’s goal fests vs our paltry tallies…Maybe it was a big Saturday evening with too many fists up the sock…Or maybe it’s Sunday Roast time in Lesbania and there’s basting to be done…

    I like a spit roasted hunk of beast myself, rotating to ensure even cooking…Is that our next topic–how do we rotate for Marseille, Cardiff, Hull, Everton and Napoli before OUR trip to Man City? Thick and fast is good when you’re winning, not so much if there’s a slip up…

  18. TotalArsenal says:

    No I need to work today as well with an 8am deadline….

    Some fans are never happy and that will never change.

    I like a good roast as well, but a good vegetarian meal can be lovely too. How cold is it now at Lake Taboo?

  19. TotalArsenal says:

    Same line up for Marseille with the Flame replacing Arteta?

  20. This is all that’s needed to be said about the Spuds today !.

  21. Might as well add another !.

  22. I cant stop myself !. hahaha

  23. My hate for them is like an illness……..a nice one…….second only to Muffalitis !.

  24. TotalArsenal says:

    I like them, crummy one 🙂

  25. Totes…..I bookmark them as favourites, you never know when you might need them……actually, that’s quite often !. hahaha

  26. 17highburyterrace says:

    Well done Cockie…

    ToTL, 8 am deadline? Again, I must ask about the priorities…Is HH farming projects your way?…

    Rooney did everything but bite a Cardiff defender and (because he didn’t bite him) gets off with just a yellow…At least the English game is alive and well with the (current) title holders…

    And now he scores (deflected)… Sh*t…

  27. Wonder why VCC spends little time on here ?.
    Image may offend or in VCC`s case…a distant memory of loin stirrings !. hahaha

  28. 17highburyterrace says:

    ToTL, lost my train of thought with the Rooney mess on the telly…I still can’t look at him without burping up a little of my breakfast…

    It’s cold but sunny here in Tahoe and it appears as if any real snow will hold off until December. We got a dusting the other day but today (after it warms up) I’ll be seeing if the (south-facing) trails are melted…Luckily our place heats up nicely if the sun is out… So, in other words, another late start for the ski season… 😦

    Odemwinge looks bright and the kid with all the Js in his name almost makes a chance for Cardiff by trying to dribble out of his own end…We don’t play as frenetic as United do, which I like…

    Re: Tuesday…Flams for Arteta, Sicky or Theo for Wilshere? Hard to say….

  29. jnyc says:

    Yes TA, now when i watch us play, i have less fear of defensive weakness, much less when we play with A lead. I think Arsenes new attitude and Boulds influence help here. Remember we started and finished extremely well last season defensively. Coinciding with Bould coming in? But definitely Arsene saw need for adjustment in style of play.
    i dont think it is only down to the defensive starters, though they have been great. I really feel nacho, tommy, and even jenks will do the job pretty well if used. And i do want to see them rotated. I say jenks also because sagna is my choice for cb to rest the bfg. TV for kozzer.

    JB, some.fantastic points, all agreed, ESPECIALLY about lack of longer shots. Santi needs to try more, — theo, and poldi when back. It does open things up just a bit in the box for our intricate play. We must remain a threat from outside the box, or else we make our job much harder, and easier for opposing defenders.

  30. 17… you live near Lake Tahoe ?………just had a look on Google images, it`s stunning !…..just the sort of place to start a Lesbanian franchise !. Part of the franchise conditions is you have to be a Gooner…..know anyone ? . hahaha

  31. TotalArsenal says:

    17, priority short term is finishing the project well. After that I should have more time. After Christmas we’re off to the Highlands for a winter break… For weeks of BST to go.

  32. TotalArsenal says:

    Sounds nice, 17. Do you pictures on your walks?

  33. 17highburyterrace says:

    Cockie, I live in South Lake Tahoe, the less glamorous end of the lake unless you like mountains (and casinos). Maybe with the current demographics (aging population) the pole dancers (on the Nevada side, I’m in California…) would do better working the zimmerframe…

    Campbell came close to equalizing and United are under pressure but I don’t see it happening…RvP (and others) being saved for Spurs next weekend?…

  34. 17highburyterrace says:

    I’m gonna try a run today and I’ll carry the camera and send you a few…We’ve got big views from the trails right out the door… I know it’s a longer trip, but you should come here for your holiday…bit more daylight than in Scotland at this time of year…(We were in Edinburgh for xmas last year…)

    Rooney flopping must mean that the match is nearly done… 😦

  35. 17highburyterrace says:

    2-2!!!! From the set piece after the little fat fellow (Medel?) got called out for punching on Fellaini…

  36. 17highburyterrace says:

    Rooney—Too unselfish…:lol:

  37. TotalArsenal says:

    Would be nice, 17. We will be on the west side of the country near Isle of Skye, which is ok for light.

  38. TotalArsenal says:

    Wow, superb! Great result for us.

  39. 17highburyterrace says:

    Incredible finish…What a blunder from Rooney after the great ball from the (ageless) Welsh guy… They’ll bounce back by beating up on Spurs next weekend… 😆

    Scotland sounds good Total…Someday out this way, eh…All that work has to be for something… 😉

    Well, in the end, it turned out to be a fun morning for watching footie… 😀

  40. TotalArsenal says:

    I would love to come and a trip to the US is part of the plans, 17! Would be great to meet you and family and talk about the mighty Arse f2f. 🙂

  41. James Bond says:

    cheers Jnyc – yeah, that’s one thing we need to have a proper go, even if we are hitting them in the crowd a couple of times, least it keeps the opposition guessing, besides if they come down to close us down at the edge of the box, we can either have a go and deflect them in or play a nice little sexy pass as it will open up the space behind – this is something we need to do a lot in the training ground i reckon and designate players, i feel Rosicky has a great shot from range on him, as did Arteta but he hardly comes in those positions now , and santi is too busy trying to jiggle from left to right and then get into the “dummy” – just bloody shoot for crying out loud.

    St.Tottnumb day has come early today ahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahha

    ahahahahahaahahahahahha HI5 @ Glics – BOOING (not BOING) ahahahahahahahahahahahhaah

    and man utd ahahahahahahahahahaahahaahahahahahhahahahahahahaahahah


    without Rooney, they are no one , if he gets injured they be lucky to finish in top 10 even with a fully fit RVP (his best days are behind him now and he is back to normal on the treatment table) ahahahahhahahahahahahhahahahahahahaha

    Hi5 everyone


  42. TotalArsenal says:

    JB, I’d say we are anything but predictable in attack. Why waste position by shooting from distance with little chance of success?

  43. James Bond says:

    little chance of success ? really ?

    how would you know if it’s little chance of success if we haven’t tried it or given it a go ?

  44. I would call this a Satisfying Sunday !. Most erectifying ( a new word I have made up, a cross between erection and rectifying !, quite suitable I thing ! ) imo, I`ve got a boner and Totscum and Manscum have drifted slightly !. hahaha

    17. How far do you run ?. I went for a 6 miler today with my Manc neighbour ( he was expecting 3 points today !. hahaha ). beautiful weather and glorious countryside !.

  45. I think…not…. I thing ! hahaha

  46. James Bond says:

    from what i am seeing, we’re very predictable not just this season but from a very very long time, “walk the ball in ” pass pass and pass – allows the opposition to keep things tight , park the bus and this in turn allows them to wait for us to come to them , when our move breaks down – possession lost , we start again

    have a go, keep things interesting, you hit it nice and clean – you test the keeper, you keep the defenders and DM’s guessing

    Memo to Giroud, Rosicky, Santiago, Wilshere – shoot from outside the box , when in a great position to do so

    it would be bloody nice and mighty effective, IMO.

    not all the time but a couple of attempts every now and then in a 90 minute game could go a long way in winning the matches and so on.

    the way i see it @ TA – it’s we have a go from distance, it hits the defenders, goes in or goes to the crowd – we get a corner and we can score – more opportunities, sure it can go over the bar or into the crowd and we lose possession but hey, it’s not like we score from our every passing move and meaningful possession anyway, no ?

  47. James Bond says:

    Hamsik injured for Napoli, would love a draw in the dortmund game !!!

    re- the starting 11 for Marseille – Jack drops to the bench for Rosicky or Theo – i be very surprised if , Jacky boy starts (and yes , you can quote me on that, ha

    ahahahahaahahaha @ Glics – genius , that’s a good new word addition in your artillery

  48. TotalArsenal says:

    Maybe you’ll get your wish when Podolski returns, JB. For me, shooting only makes sense when it is the only option. I reckon you and Johnnie overrate it a bit. We create loads of chances and soon our fire power increases with Theo, Pod and Santi hitting form. Wenger clearly instructs his team not to shoot unnecessarily and I am with him on this one.

  49. James Bond says:

    that is were i differ with both you and professor AW – Shooting from distance is not the only option but an Added option for me, but no worries, since both of you are leaders and i’m just a secret agent, there is only so much i can do, like put a gun on your head and force you to change tactics slightly and change your mind 👿

    on to more serious things now, we have Cardiff soon, right ? they like to play football, will be interesting.

  50. Hey Bastardos and Furry Friends. You may have wondered about the talkings of….” The Love Shack ! ” ( A few BKers have already seen the work I have put in ). Well here you go, just found it as the headline picture of the company who supplied it ( and there`s still a couple of things on the snag list to finish, but, 2 weeks and jnr Gooner will be in ! ) on their new website ( still a few more details to put on, but they are getting there ! ).
    So if your curious to what Glic has been upto, have a butchers !.

  51. TotalArsenal says:

    Cardiff next and a win on Saturday will put us seven points ahead of Pool and Chavs till Sunday at least. But OGAAT ….. marseille next. 🙂

  52. 17highburyterrace says:

    Cockie, I tend to run between 4 and 8 miles but it’s all on trails and with big climbs…plus it’s all at altitude (6500-7500 feet, approx 2000 meters) in years past I’ve gotten into the higher country and done some longer ones…but then you have to carry a bit of food and a water bottle…I’ll carry the camera instead today… Also, very cool stuff with the mod-box stuff. Our climate is a little rough, but that stuff is big in the fancier parts of California. We rebuilt (after the forest fire 😯 ) in a passive solar design with insulated concrete forms… I can post some photos of that too, if you’re innerested…

    Bond, I don’t want to start a(nother) fight, but put me in the camp with the “leaders.” right now I think Ramsey (who has our only goal from outside the box…) is the one guy who should take them. Your argument for finding a long-term Arteta replacement is strengthened by noting that he rarely gets forward enough to try his right foot… Like TA says, Poldolski (if and when) he gets back, will take some… Santi (unfortunately) lacks acceleration and gets a lot of shots blocked, esp. on his right foot. English defenders are big and can stretch well. He’ll do better when he has a legitimate passing outlet going to his left (Lu-Lu) as defenders naturally give more space that direction. (This too is a key for Poldolski.) By that same logic, Giroud (also a left footer) might take some swipes but people were awfully hard on him when he did last season. Better to hold the ball up and bring others into play. Like I said up above, he looked so much more comfortable as our work-horse rather than the go-to guy (for goals) with France…And, at least yesterday, the goals came his way… Plus, we were playing So’ton yesterday, not merely Spurs… 😀 …

    We may be jealous (of ManCity) in that we’ve yet to put a really big score up…You can only earn 3 points at a time and the fact that we’re finding our strength from the back and controlling games (or at least parts of them) to me is a new satisfaction…More possession THEN more shots, I say, though who knows…If we play a team on a suicide mission (like Spurs today…or like the Toon when we scored 7 last season…) maybe we can just kill them on the break…

    As, always, however, that’s just me… YMMV (“your mileage may vary” — do you guys say that one?) …

  53. 17

    Apart from….The Arse….and although no where near as obsessive… my other loves are Garden/landscape design, House design ( especially contemporary ), Architecture and my running in the countryside ( which I am gradually building up again after the calf injuries ! ). More pic`s the better !. 😀

  54. 17

    Although not as high as your running altitude, I too don’t have any flat runs around here, it`s all up and down hills, but hey, if it was flat it would be boring with no twists and turns and beautiful views !.


    Evening Bergkampesqueres

    Fine post TA. Another game won by the new Arsenal. Mixed bag of defend (no shame in defending any more) when we have to and play quality offensive football at the right times.

    No doubt about it, we can win this league.

    And heres what I say, and ime always right so dont argue. In 2 years time we will have a side that will not only win the Champions League, it will also retain the thing.

    We are on course for having a spell when Arsenal will have the best side in Europe.

    Ive had a great weekend. Watching the mighty Arsenal, followed by a comedy show, and then making love to the wife, not my wife, somebody elses wife.

    Bit knackered today. Its very exhausing making love to some one elses wife.

    So i just laid back and watched City put 6 past Totnumb, not quite as satisfying as making love to someone elses wife, but very stimulating. AVB’s interview was hillarious. I thought the little poof was about to start crying. I wonder what his wife looks like??

  56. 17highburyterrace says:


    Seems to me like you enjoy the ladies…and taking the piss out of your mates, as well. But maybe I’m getting the wrong impression… 😉

    I’m killing just a bit of time before running trying to let it get just a hair warmer out… In the sun it’s fine, but in the shadows….Brrrr….. (I would guess low 40s, 5-6 degrees C) Anyhow, here’s a link to a story about our fire rebuild…

    I like the modular homes (a lot) for quality and thoughtfulness of design and there’s a big movement towards the smaller, smarter houses down in the SF bay area. Up here it’s all about the sun… Supposedly we get 273 days/year of sunshine… Shade in the summer is important too, so a lot of it has to do with the angle/size of the eaves and location on the building site. Maybe less of an issue in Cornwall…

    OK, almost noon, time to er, process that last espresso and head out… 😀

  57. TotalArsenal says:

    hahaha Terry – AVB’s mrs is all yours I reckon. 🙂

  58. James Bond says:

    ah, 17HT – come on now with the fight, we hardly ever fight on here, it’s only a difference of opinion, so don’t be scared really, i’m no HH , ha

    but i don’t blame you for siding with the “Leaders” as you’ve always been the wiser one 😉 but i get what you mean and i can read well between the lines 😆

    interesting match of the day analysis with match highlights

    and Jack wilshere on his injuries and so on at the very end of it.

  59. Thank you 17. First may I say. I`m glad you survived what can only be described as a truly frightening experience with the most important thing…..the lives of your good self and family !. Out of the ashes rises a phoenix and what doesn`t kill you makes you stronger are some clichés what come to mind, so well done my friend, that link is inspirational and looks superb !.
    If I was to write about house design I would be on here for hours and bore the pants off the BK brethren !. I know of I.C.F`s ( not the West Ham kind, who I have had the non-pleasure of meeting ! ), SIP`s etc, have drawn my own plans, renovated, new build X 3…. etc` ( not as stupid and crazy as I sound…..or look ! hahaha ). I love programmes ( not sure if you`re aware of them ) such as ” Grand Designs, My Flat pack Home and George Clarke`s Amazing Spaces ” etc`….which can be found on Channel 4 – 4oD, on line !.
    And yes, I do like taking the piss out of my mates, but in my defence, having a sharp wit doesn`t help…or does help, depending on which side of the fence you are standing !. hahaha
    As for the ladies….well as my wife could be reading, I will leave that to Stretch !. Although it would not be so exhausting for him if he was just to concentrate on shagging the bored wives instead of every few seconds jumping up and looking to see whether VCC`s car has pulled up in the drive !……..oops !. hahaha

  60. 17highburyterrace says:

    Back from my run and hoping to add a trail/mountain photo but they’re taking forever to upload…

    Yeah, Cockie, happy wife = happy life… And then let the crumbs fall where they may…

    Sounds like you’re quite the builder. My plan is to retire from the insurance windfall on my one “big” project. It was pretty tough as it coincided with the housing (building) crash around here… I had quite a bit more hair before all that…

    On that note, have you ever helped Terry with a building project? Sounds like he could use a mod-box for each and every bird he houses…

    I’ve got a friend’s wife (true story…) we might see this next (holiday) weekend who is pretty big into the modulars. I’ll ask her about the various box programs (programmes?) you mention and other questions about her box experience. Who knows, maybe someday she and I will erect something together…

    Do, I even need to use the smileys? I hope not…

    Anyhow, the photo here is pretty washed out (too sunny 😀 …) but it shows a bit of trail (in the burned area) and one of our bigger mountains (Mt. Tallac, just a hair under 10K feet or 3000 meters…) that looms over the lake…

    In English football news, Week 12… Arsenal, ManCity and Chelsea take all available points; ManU, Liverpool and Everton only take 1 apiece and Tottenham and Southhampton draw the bagel. Are we beginning to see a bit of separation amongst the clubs who comprise the top 8? Oh, wait… Newcastle are ahead of Spurs on goal difference…

  61. TotalArsenal says:

    Love the pics, 17. Makes me want to walk there. You are a lucky man living there and yet being able to watch the Arse

  62. TotalArsenal says:

    Night TotLeagers 🙂

  63. VCC says:

    17ht………Love the photo. Lovely back yard you have.

    It looks a little too rough terrain for me to negotiate with my Zimmer. 🙂

  64. Gerry says:

    Good morning (@gmt) all, Well it has been a busy weekend for me.

    Apologies for not commenting on the preview on Saturday – great stuff, and a real gent in LTL. Good comments before and after the game. Well found!

    On the match, which I didn’t see until Sunday, was well summed up in your write up TA.

    If it had been up to me of course, our dual scorer would not have been playing. I stand by that, for the simple reason I do not think he can keep taking the kicks and things for the next 7 games. True, the next two are likely to be ‘easier’, but there will still be calls to play our strongest team, again and again? You are not going to last very long just using the same 14 players is all I am saying.

    It was a game I thought the Saints would find it hard to win, and got worse when they added to their injury list. However, I feel we did make it hard for ourselves, particularly the lack of moving the ball out of defense quickly? I highlighted last week what I thought were the key differences between Arteta and Flamini, and the latter’s constant movement to be the outlet ball in tight spaces is not only what Arteta missed, but the others too?

    I have to disagree on one point though TA – A new DM has to be sq, not a back up. No point in settling for anything less as we have back ups already, in Yennaris and Hayden. Neither made the bench, so a combination of JW and TR7 filled in. For some reason it the very act of using them as subs alarms people. Southampton had no qualms about their 19yo Ward-Prowse playing – a player I gave MOTM in the Under 21’s game you may remember? Well he did not just drop in, and play as well as any, through sitting on the bench? He has been in and out of the side for the last two seasons. Which is why he could step up in a really tough game. Come March/April we may need our guys to do the same?

    Our midfield did not have the right balance for me, particularly going forwards. Subs could have been made on the hour, rather than the 70 mins too, but that is a minor worry. That may have been our ‘strongest’ side on paper, allowing for who was fit, but as 17HT has repeatedly said, they do not necessarily play their best together. It will be a bigger problem soon if we do not get it sorted ahead of the ‘big trio + one’ starting in 10 days time?

    So ToTL with a deserved win. On to Marsielles.

    I think the team will more or less pick itself, but more of that closer to the game.

  65. Gerry says:

    TCM @15.55 – Tad too close to ‘kiddy porn’ for my liking, unless i am misreading it? Most photos with heads cut off are done for a reason? – perhaps you ought to be more careful what you bookmark …. AND link?

    I say this because I then ignored all the other links too. You tread a fine line, but luckily I did see the modboxspaces one.

    I saw one of these programs where the guy was developing hexagonal pods that could be joined together in a variety of shapes and sizes, and were portable so did not require planning permission? Very modern/ minimalist, but very light and airy with access to great views in the right setting?

    I have ‘Amazing Spaces’ on record. I would have the recent ‘cob built’ mushroom looking pad as more what i had in mind though. Just in my budget with a build cost of £150 too?

  66. Gerry says:

    17HT@23.02 – Can i bring the dogs, they’d love it? I am not sure I’d cope with the altitude though. i am slow enough here at sea level, never mind running the trails 😆

    I can see where your dog built up the stamina to still be around at 17 – I hope that is still the case? Since a second bump with a car, my 14.5 year old is better than ever. It seems to have put back in place whatever the first knock took away. Very strange?

    Sadly, my cancer patient is not doing so good, so her time is getting shorter.

  67. TotalArsenal says:

    Hi Gerry, agreed on the next DM-plus needing to be SQ. My point is that we should not relegate Arteta too quickly, as there is still a lot left in him…..

    Agreed on the views re our midfield play – it needs improving and I am sure it will.

  68. TotalArsenal says:

    Gerry, you are right re that image – I will remove it.

  69. Bloody Hell Gezzer !…you make it sound like I`m waiting to receive a Blue Paedo Badge from Saint Savile !. hahaha
    All very innocent, but I can understand where you`re coming from. I should have been a bit more wise when the photo had the head missing, but being someone who does most thing`s off the cuff, I just googled Cookie Monster images and it was one of 1000`s on display !.
    My blogging style is always going to get me in a bit of trouble and has done on a few occasions , but trust me my friends, I`m always out for a laugh, so please don’t take it personnel, take it with a pinch of salt !. Apologies to anyone offended and I`m glad Total has removed my 15:55.

    Now that`s out the way……Hello Mound Munching Muvverz !. 😆

    Love the pic`s, 17. It looks very much like the place where my cousin has a Villa in the Spanish mountains, somewhere near Molinicos ( North-West of Mercia ) . I went there to help him move and went running every day in the mountains, the locals started calling me El- Loco …..I think it`s Spanish for……. the mountain runner !. Alas, I will never do it again as there`s no way am I getting on a Plane again !…..I`ve got the Bergkamp jitters !.

    I saw that one, Gezzer, with the hexagonal pods, however, I don’t believe that would be a cheap build because basically the hexagonal design is more complicated ( angle cutting etc` ) and time consuming ( time is money ! ) than a basic square !. Nice though !.


    17……I loved the pic`s of what looked like someone treading in some Spurs and piles of Spurs !. 😆

  70. TotalArsenal says:

    TCM, good to see you are not taking it personal. We all know you are bonkers – I am sure El Loco means the nutter – but in a good, award winning kind of way 🙂

  71. Gerry says:

    TA & TCM – I knew you were not meaning it it that way. But that’s the trouble you can get into if not staying on the right side of the fine line .. but all done and dusted.

    I think that Hexagonal design thing was about £150,000 for the two bedroom collection. But it was a bit like the German one on ‘Grand Designs’ that was made ready off-site, and was put up in 6 days … admittedly by a bonkers hard working German crew going at it all hours?
    But once the foundations, or whatever it is going to sit on is made ready, the hex’s were put together quite easily as I recall?

    Compare that to the luxury canal barge at £350k it sounds a bargain?

    I had an old canal ‘butty’ – the non-engined load carrying barges that got strung together in the height of their usage. – Mine was built in 1906 in Birmingham and had been fitted out to be a 3 bedroomed houseboat. Unfortunately, by the time I got it, it was a tad rotten. In fact there was a hole just above the waterline, but the inside was fine. However it needed moving from Stratford where it had been moored, and carefully hand-towed down 35 miles of canal to its new mooring. I can remember at one point it got stuck in the mud and I managed to get it moving again doing a life-saving back-stroke – 3 tons of boat mark you! The thing is once in motion it was relatively easy as there is little resistance in the current-less canal water … I nearly got killed when it came to stopping it for the same reason as above – a 3 ton boat, moving however slowly, and has not engine to slow it down, simply has no reason to stop when you stop towing it.

    It was not a happy ending though. It took 3 weeks to get it on to the Oxford canal. I paid the mooring fees, left it nice and secure over a Bank holiday weekend. Came down 5 days later to find the owner of the site decided to move it, got stuck on a mud flat where it tilted, and it filled with water. The lovely wood panels that were in the lounge area got ruined and I never used it again. Sold it to a couple of Aussies who wanted to take it down to London … I hope they made it?

  72. Gezzer.

    The Hex one was very interesting in design and was inspired by a Bees !. I do still think it was expensive as each hexagonal pod ( 10 M2 ?) was ( if I remember right ) about £10k !. Trust me, square or rectangular is a lot cheaper !.

    Here is a link in case 17 wants to watch the series. I think episode 2 is about the Hex one, it also has the mind-blowing Swedish tree shacks !. Shame the adverts go on a bit too long and I don’t think you can fast forward them !.

  73. A better link….the mans actual website !. Hope you don’t mind Totes…..honestly, I`m not on any commission !. hahaha

  74. 17highburyterrace says:

    G’morning fellas…

    We probably need to get back on topic but I will say that I only meant to link to a single photo not the whole bunch that I took…Sorry about that, I would have at least rotated them to make them right-side-up… 😳

    Gerry, my old dog still hangs in there but there’s a bit more moaning with each up and down and she can’t get up on her own if she’s worked her way onto the concrete floor. Sometimes, in fact, the timing is a bit off…Let’s just say that the rug she sleeps upon will be leaving this world exactly the same day she does… 😯 She’s a real beauty (lab-husky mix…) and it’s true that we used to ski up and down all those mountains for many years. At some point the deeper snow got to be too much so then it became only the flat skiing. Nowadays it’s just a couple hundred yards each afternoon… Like you’ve said, they never live long enough… 😦

    What’s the latest, TA with Henry’s eyes?…

    Thanks for the links to the modular stuff, cockie… Those images seem to show roofs and ceilings as well as the rest… 😀

    As for the Arsenal….Arteta passes fit and Flams is back from suspension while Theo sounds like he’s raring to go. Seems a bit of a log-jam and I’m curious how AW will work it. Staying fresh for the teams that are only playing once a week seems a must. Cardiff really embraced the pace United threw at them yesterday. My hope is that we can slow things down and control that match through possession and superior technique.

    But I’m getting ahead of myself and we must be O-gaat with tomorrow’s CL match. I love that Santi has sounded a similar warning. Napoli seem to have some troubles with Hamsik hurt and UEFA talking about our match there being played behind closed doors. Has that decision actually been made? Whatever the case, we can’t let that late goal vs Dortmund (in our stadium) come back to haunt us…

    Happy Monday…

  75. Just back from a 4 miler and the last mile was tricky as it was dark and I couldn`t see much ground, but lucky enough not to find any pot holes !. It`s funny how you can increase the speed substantially going down a dark lane, especially if you hear a howling or strange noise…..fcuk that…zoooommmm !. hahaha

    Youngsters tonight Vs Marseille . Tweets from around 18:55 .

  76. Gerry says:

    TMC -Yes, I watched the whole program again, with just a bit of fast forwarding.

    The pods are £10k a time. the one they had on show was a 3 pod affair, ready built for £40k. But that was a single bedroom. one.

    I like the idea of having 6 of them circling a courtyard, presumably ready build for under £100k?

    Thanks for the Marseilles link, I’ll get back to it now. Strong side out there, only Gnabry missing as he’ll be on first team duty no doubt.

    17HT – I’m glad to hear the dog is still with you. I am in ‘playing it by ear mode’ with my Lily.
    On shorter walks, according to how she is, and a top up of her medication. I fear the shoulder has got to the point where it will not take any weight now, so it is very gently gently for as long as she wants to carry on.


  77. This is what I miss about the London area, the game tonight is free to get in !. Sounds a good game as well !.

  78. Oops spoke to soon….Hayden`s just got a Red card ! . 1-1 HT and this will be a good test for the young Gooners now, to see how they cope a man down !.

  79. That levels it out…..Red card to a Marseille player !.

  80. Gerry says:

    Back to 10 v 10, so they should give it a good go now/ Pity we took off Zelalem though?

  81. Gerry says:

    Sounds like Akpom is getting in some shooting practice?

  82. Doesn`t say why Z went off !. Was it tactical or injury ?

  83. Gerry says:

    Tactical I guess from his replcement?

  84. Sounds like Marseille are hanging on by their teeth !. Talking of teeth…..Stretch is on stand by for the game tonight, he only lives about 9 miles away from Borehamwood ….no, not as a sub, but in case the floodlights go out !, they will shine a torch on his teeth !….fcuking place will be seen from space !. hahaha

  85. Gerry says:

    God one to watch on the ‘Player later?

  86. Gerry says:

    Right, I am going to let you night owls fill the blanks spaces.

    Night all ..

  87. TotalArsenal says:

    New Post New Post 🙂

    Marcus is feeling good about our squad! 🙂

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