FlamShere DM-pivot, Theo & Santi on wings, Koz back? NU preview.

I predict a great performance by our Ozicle!

I predict a great performance by our Ozicle!

Newcastle United away is still on my wish list to go. I have seen a few home games and also once attended Liverpool – NU (with a massive power cut lasting more than an hour, and no, nobody nicked my wallet) and I have always been impressed with their away supporters. As I am now a five hour drive North of Newcastle (how many fellow Gooners can say that hey?), I am once again unable to go to the match today. For those, who are going I envy you, as I am confident of a win today, which will send us back to ToTL.

Predicting our formation is becoming a bit harder now. The third game of our four-festive season games is perhaps the toughest one, as fatigue should start affecting the players. Especially BFG, Sagna, Ollie and the Ozil are at risk of burn out. Is Wenger prepared to rotate these pivotal players? I doubt it, but he will have to balance the risk of having more Ramsey-like fatigue-injuries with continuity.

I have a feeling he will not rest any of the above mentioned four players as he will want to build on the hard fought win over the Hammers and the risk of disrupting the shape and strength of the team is too big. Plus, we all know he has become quite conservative these days.

Predicted formation:

Nu v Arse

I reckon this game will suit us as we can expect the Barcodes to want to play football against us at their Northern home of football. This will enable us to play a bit deeper and solid and then come out with our passing football; for me one of the main reasons we have been so successful away.

Having Pod and Theo back is fantastic and they can help the tired and some what flat looking previous main goal scorers. This could not have come at a better time, and yet, I am also expecting a great performance by Mesut today. Cazorla had a good game against WH and is finally getting back to his former self, and this is also great news for us.

With FlamShere in the middle of our midfield, a strong ‘back five’ and the likes of OG, Cazorla/Pod, Theo and Ozil being free to express themselves up-front the Arse should have a great chance to zip the Barcodes a new one.

Let’s hope the boys will deliver.

Come On You Rip Roaring Gunners!

Written by: TotalArsenal.

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207 Responses to FlamShere DM-pivot, Theo & Santi on wings, Koz back? NU preview.

  1. silentstan says:

    cazorla who has been poor all season only improved the last match when moved in from wide to centre. JW far from being super, has been quite rubbish this year, slow and robbed of possession, so i would go flam art dm’s. jw i would bench,

  2. Afc says:

    I would start cazorla in the middle with ozil on the bench and podolski on the left and arteta for wilshere.

  3. Gerry says:

    Sorry TA, I just saw a headkine to say Ozil has not travelled.

    If that is the case the right decision, imo

  4. Afternoon Nervous Nob Noshers and to our Scottish correspondent……Murdo McBastard !. 😆

    Did you not see my request for your location McBastard ?.
    I`m not too positive about this one and expect us to be even more points worse off like for like !. You will only shut me up when we are in the + points like for like !. hahaha
    Nothing official at time of writing this in regards to Ozil and if we are to beat the Barcodestards, then that is a fine team selection from McBastard !. hahaha
    My sauces tell me that McBastard is up in Sweatysockland to open up the first secret project he`s been working on !.

    I bet by the time I`ve written this there is news about Ozil !

  5. Gerry says:

    So now we know:
    Sagna; Mert; Kos; Gibbs
    Walcott; Wilshere: Santi: Rosicky

  6. Gerry says:

    Subs: Fab; Jenks; Arteta: Poldi: Rio; Gnabry, Bendtner

    Interesting having Rio there? Four attackers, no Monreal?

    A couple of Wenjuries: Ozil – shoulder; TV5 – sick(at being dropped I shouldn’t wonder?)

  7. Gerry says:

    Got to be quicker than that TCM

  8. Gerry says:

    I am still digesting the implications of our first 11.

    I am hoping that the plan is the either JW10 or TR7 hold back and assist Flamini, with Santi the CAM?

    I would also guess that the inclusion of Kos is to fill the gap left by Gibbs attacking runs.

    So overall it makes sense for good counter attacking. I just hope we can keep possession better than of late?

  9. Gerry says:

    The weakness is we have no attacking/creative midfielders on the bench. Only Arteta to free up one of the others/

  10. AB says:

    Sound (confident) choice to leave Oz behind – hope the injury talk is rubbish. Brave attacking formation chosen – Wishere will need to show discipline today. Hope that neither Gir nor Walc need to play the full 90, though I assume Gir will get his rest against Cardiff. Tough game, and a big indicator for how the new year may play out for us. COYG!!!

  11. Newcastle make one change and we make three(?), so by your theory of rotation….a comfortable win !. hahaha
    I see it different, although due to injury, we have lost possibly our two best players….so we`re doomedddddddddddddddddd !.
    Only one thing can save the day and it`s down to our bestest secret agent…………Bond !. He has a 100% record since the introduction, but if it goes tits up, I`m sure we can find numerous interesting ways of killing you Mr Bond !.

  12. AB says:

    Gerry – true about midfield options on the bench, but we have enough out there to reshape if need be – bring Ros in, or push Jack forward, with others (Pod, Art, Gnab) there to fill in. Only odd one for me is no natural cover at LB.

  13. I`d love to talk , but I have a comfortable Sofa to hide behind !. So don’t let me down Gezzer, I have big expectations of you rotating theory !. However get it wrong and you can reassemble these words !………….Cock How Girouds rotate you on about !. hahaha

  14. Prince says:

    Thanks Totes.
    Hi Boys, im nervous.

    Come on Arsenal, lets dig deep and do these toon bastards.

    Up The ARSE!!!!!

  15. 17highburyterrace says:

    ‘Morning fellas… Feeling a little groggy this early morning…In fact, gonna pull a 2nd coffee before kick off…

    Well, I didn’t see the complete omission of Ozil and it makes me a little nervous, I must admit. Big game then for Jack, Santi and Matty…and I’m hoping for good interplay between Theo and Ollie.

    Go on…

  16. Prince says:

    Come back cockie, or is it chicken……i had a shower yesterday 😆

  17. Gerry says:

    Spin on Wilshere’s finger Cockie 😀

  18. Prince says:

    morning 17. Fresh nespresso? 😉

  19. Prince says:

    Doesnt surprise me that Tiote returns for them. Always been a thorn in our side.

  20. Gerry says:

    Nice to see all the brave Gooners are here?

    Come on JB, get off the the bookies website and join in!

  21. Dylan says:

    Extremely disappointed to see Poldi on the bench.

  22. James Bond says:

    ahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahha @ TCM and Gerry

    well, I got the team spot on, Didn’t I Gerry And TA ? 😉


    3-0 to the mighty Arsenal!!!

  23. Dylan says:

    Oooooooh Rosicky is in the middle. Ok, fair play Wenger I have no issue with that.

  24. Prince says:

    Impact sub Dylan. But secretly, me too.

  25. James Bond says:


    he’s not match fit yet.

    where art thou @ 17HT

    espresso calling, no ?

  26. Dylan says:

    I’m going 6-2 to the mighty Gunners! 😉 Did you see Hull yesterday? 😉 We can do that!

  27. James Bond says:

    don’t forget how AW nursed and eased Theo back , when he was out for a month or so, Poldi has been out for 4 months.

    ah, we are looking sharp, good start

    hope Gerry is wearing the lucky scarf ?

  28. 17highburyterrace says:

    I’m here Bond…Avatar switched away from the google-eye mosquito…

    They’re reporting Ozil has a shoulder injury and will miss several matches…

    We’re on the front foot early…

  29. James Bond says:

    no Ozil injury, like predicted yesterday, he is being rested (Winter break) and will be back for Aston Villa. 😉

  30. James Bond says:

    all this good stuff and no goal yet , come on lads put it in the back of the net !

  31. Dylan says:

    That was a clear foul on Walcott.

  32. 17highburyterrace says:

    I’m just reporting what was said in our broadcast…

    No foul on Theo there? We’re pinning them back nicely but no chances yet…

  33. 17highburyterrace says:

    Whoa…Debuchy clean through but utterly fails to bring the ball down… Wake up call?

  34. Dylan says:

    Everton already 1-0 up.

  35. Dylan says:

    JB, Wenger said before the game that Ozil is injured and will miss 2-3 games. He’s hurt his shoulder.

  36. 17highburyterrace says:

    Dylan, my theory is that sometimes Wenger tells lies…Regardless, it sounds like we won’t see Ozil for at least a couple of weeks…

    All Newcastle for the last 10 mins but still no shots either direction…

  37. Gerry says:

    Dylan – And you believe every word AW says?

    Yes JB, the scarf is on, on the dogs will have to wait for their dinner today!

  38. Dylan says:

    17HT, I was more citing the length of his absence as JB said he’d be back for Villa. You’re likely right and he’s just being rested, but he still looks unlikely to return for a bit.

  39. Gerry says:

    HT – He will recover quickly enough if we need him?

  40. 17highburyterrace says:

    Wilshere tries one…very poor…

    Short corner routine and Santi hustle created a bit of danger but we’re not really making inroads…

  41. James Bond says:

    have been wasteful in the final 3rd, Santiago looking promising.

  42. James Bond says:

    gibbs is being outdone by Debuchy nearly everytime, far too easy for him, come on gibbo , wake up!

  43. 17highburyterrace says:

    Sicky strong but straight with the left foot…Trying the long one *should* please 007…

  44. 17highburyterrace says:

    Giroud waving his hand…Usually means he’s fine…

  45. Dylan says:

    This ref is garbage, again.

  46. Dylan says:

    If only he wasn’t the grown up version of Pubert Addams from Addams
    Family Values!

  47. James Bond says:

    we have so far been very poor in the final 3rd and not been able to take advantage of newcastle’s nervousness or mistakes.

    come on boys, score a goal before HT, will ya

  48. Dylan says:

    Excellent tackle by Giroud! More of that! 🙂

  49. 17highburyterrace says:

    Santi and Giroud both down on the pitch and the latter gets a yellow…We need to get on with this, boys…

  50. James Bond says:

    the fuck ? why has Giroud been shown a yellow card ? wtf

  51. James Bond says:

    Giroud needs to be careful with his moaning and sulking to the ref now or else he won’t hesitate to send him off by showing another yellow, I feel.

  52. 17highburyterrace says:

    40 mins in and very little of note…Flams got away with a whiffed challenge a minute ago, no?

    Tiote now called for fouling Santi…The game needs a goal…Ideally one for us…

    Poor FK…and a center half strike from BFG 🙄

  53. James Bond says:

    where’s the yellow for Tiote ?

  54. AB says:

    geeze, that was not what I expected at the end of the half…

  55. 17highburyterrace says:

    Finally some action but it’s at our end…Mistake from Kos, Good save from big Szcz, and the crossbar glanced from the corner…nil-nil at HT…

    Sorry but we really have no offense going today… Guys are going to have to do better in the 2nd period…

  56. James Bond says:

    JW has been rather questionable for me , not at the horses completely

    wouldn’t be a bad idea to bring in Arteta for the 2nd half for JW ? and let him play as the CM position ?

    nothing worth a mention from our left flank and Gibbs in particular, heavily reliant on Sagna as usual

    Newcastle are going to be content with a draw , I feel , so they won’t be coming out as such – we have very little support from the ref and Tiote keeps getting away with it

    this game needs a moment of brilliance from somewhere, dare I say, even JW can provide that but Rosicky needs to get in the game more.

  57. James Bond says:

    also we have it all wrong with Santiago on the left with Gibbs, it’s the wrong partnership

    Santigo with NAcho


    Poldi with Gibbs , it should be mostly

    Hope Rosicky moves to the left now and AW makes the tactical switch even with Theo, that will keep Debuchy on his toes

  58. Gerry says:

    JB – Iwould say it is having Santi on the left is the problem?

    Most of our attacks early on were down our left …according to the audio?

  59. James Bond says:

    there’s a red card in this game, let’s hope it’s not for Arsenal.

    2nd HT here we go


  60. Dylan says:

    JB, I don’t think Arteta is capable of playing the slightly more attacking CM position anymore. He’s lost a lot of mobility. If anything, move
    Rosicky back to CM, put Santi at CAM, and bring on Poldi/Gnabry.

  61. James Bond says:

    Santi has been disposed a lot on the left and Debuchy has outrun him mostly on the left,

    he’s been ok when he comes to the middle of the pitch and attacks.

    @ Gerry

  62. Gerry says:

    So, Poldi and Gnabry on for Wilshere and Giroud 55-60 mins?

  63. James Bond says:

    JW – wake up

  64. Dylan says:

    Agreed Gerry.

  65. James Bond says:

    wtf was sczny doing out of goal like that ? ??


  66. James Bond says:

    the game is slightly more open and WILSHERE is very static , remarkable.

    pedestrian like

  67. Dylan says:

    Yes Rosicky! Finally you’ve done something to make me smile, pushing Gouffran!

  68. 17highburyterrace says:

    We’re moving the ball and pressing it a bit better but I can’t see any ideas in the final 3rd. Somebody will need a moment of brilliance or this will end nil-nil…

    Subs before the hour? Gnabry at that juncture? Dream on my friends…

  69. 17highburyterrace says:

    OK, that’s the hour gone…Toon will try to win it with Ben Arfa…What’s our plan?…

  70. James Bond says:

    ben arfa comes on, this will make things very interesting as he isn’t as good with his defensive work.

  71. James Bond says:

    this game has a goal coming from a set piece written all over it.

  72. Dylan says:

    How many chances does Tiote get????????

  73. AB says:


  74. 17highburyterrace says:


  75. Prince says:

    Yes baby!!

  76. Dylan says:

    Yes Giroud celebrate in front of those Newcastle fans!

  77. Gerry says:

    Good call AW

  78. 17highburyterrace says:

    Horrible defense, horrible keeping… You were right, 007, about the set piece…

  79. James Bond says:

    and there it is, the Visionary called it




    wo0000000000000t wo00000000000000t

  80. 17highburyterrace says:

    Their corner, well defended…

    Now that we’ve got the lead, let’s settle the match…

  81. James Bond says:

    Hi-Five everyone

    come on, let’s keep our heads down now and work even harder @ stares at JW

  82. Prince says:

    Fucking circus.

    Stick it in FFS, do you want the title or not??

  83. AB says:

    ARRGGH. Come on, get the second and kill it

  84. James Bond says:

    ffs the sooner we take off JW the better

    come on AW


  85. Gerry says:

    Gibbs on 4th game in 9 days?

  86. 17highburyterrace says:

    Arteta coming on…for injured Gibbs, where’s Nacho…

    THAT was a crazy sequence…Theo almost lobs it in, then Giroud whiffs with his right…

    They don’t look like they can score but a 2nd would’ve been very nice…

  87. Prince says:

    What happened to Nacho?

  88. Dylan says:

    Why didn’t they give it back to us?

  89. Dylan says:

    He got the ball!

  90. 17highburyterrace says:

    Nobody knows, Prince…

    Flams at LB is doing some strange stuff…Not a good foul there…

  91. Dylan says:

    Nacho and TV5 are sick.

  92. AB says:

    Getting sloppy here. We will do well to keep a clean sheet from here. We need another goal

  93. Dylan says:

    Rosicky carded being fouled by Cabaye. Somehow, still no card for
    Tiote. Thank you Pubert.

  94. 17highburyterrace says:

    Cheers Dylan…

    Pushing and shoving and a yellow for Sicky… Ref generally seems to be blowing when we need him to…

  95. 17highburyterrace says:

    That was a nice takeaway by JW on Ben Arfa…

    Jenks coming on for us…

  96. Prince says:

    Bricked my grundies

  97. 17highburyterrace says:

    Geezus Chez… That’s 3 this season…

  98. Dylan says:

    Szcz going for the KO on Remy.

  99. 17highburyterrace says:

    LOL Prince….Now that’s a colorful expression…

  100. alcide says:

    hehe indeedd 17ht

  101. James Bond says:

    every one supporting Sczny and arguing with me – I SAY NOTHING.

  102. Dylan says:

    Excellent time wasting by Giroud. Top class. Now Nicky B needs to do his job. Get the ball, get to the corner.

  103. Prince says:

    Cmon NB23, make it ours.
    Come on Arsenal

    Dig Deep!!

  104. James Bond says:

    Sczny brain farts currently running at 2 in every single game – CONSISTENCY .

  105. 17highburyterrace says:

    Bendy on for Ollie…He scored the goal but…

    Yeah Bond, hard to defend Sir Chez on that one… Though I thought you were going to keep quiet about it…

    Looks to me that Nicky has top-knot (hair) troubles. Santi and Flams doing just enough on our left side…

  106. AB says:

    bloody hell set piece…..

  107. 17highburyterrace says:

    BFG gives a corner for no reason but we defend it… 4 mins ET…

  108. 17highburyterrace says:

    Ben Arfa, so selfish…

  109. TotalArsenal says:

    Thanks for comments guys, just come in from lunch but no stream success. COYG!

  110. AB says:


  111. 17highburyterrace says:

    Late Corner but Sir Chez punches out…

    That should do it…

  112. Dylan says:

    Wooooooooo a victory. We win the 2013 title.

  113. AB says:

    TOTL!!!! great play boys

  114. 17highburyterrace says:

    FT…Well, that was painful, but we did it…

  115. Prince says:



    F**K the Rest

    We Are the BEST


  116. Gerry says:

    Good punch by Szcz at the death …. but I’m saying nothing

  117. James Bond says:


    WO000000000000000000000000T WO000000000000000000000000000000000000000000T

  118. TotalArsenal says:

    Brilliant – ToTL again. Three big points but Cockie will tell us it means nuffing hahahaha 🙂

  119. James Bond says:

    we were wounded, we were injured oh yes , we are top of the league by the end of the year and shall remain so at the start of the year.

    wo0000000000000000000t wo0000000000000000000000000000t

  120. Prince says:

    Very painful. Two and a half hrs sleep left but well worth it.

    Night all 🙂

    Keep it Goonerish

  121. TotalArsenal says:

    Out to walk the dog before it gets dark – no chance then.

    Catch you later.

    No Chelsea win would be great now.

  122. Gerry says:

    I hope we are not counting too many injuries after that?

    Bit of a bruising battle, but 3 points to keep TCM quiet until when exactly?

  123. I`m Backkkkkkk !.

    Hahaha Very fitting that Giroud scored the goal which saved Gezzer getting out the Vaseline ! hahaha
    I put this victory ( and a very important one ) down to JB`s war cry !……he`s now 2 for 2 ! and still in one piece !. hahaha
    Still, don’t be too cocky as we are still -4 points on my logical like for like common sense Cockie Factor and guess what…..even if we beat Cardiff on Wednesday…..we will still be -4 points worse off !. hahaha

  124. Kaboom says:

    Absolutely true grits performance from the team.

    Gladiators like. This is the perfect 1-0 victory that i been asking for!

    Just cant figure out, why the hell bendther just jogging around the field while rosicky can still spring around n putting pressure on krul..

  125. Kaboom says:

    Tiote. Uglier than luke chadwick

  126. So what did Szczesny do ?…..was it that thing where he plays a one two with the opposition forward ?.

  127. James Bond says:

    😆 :lol :lol

  128. Admir says:

    It was a great victory today. We have been the only big team in the league that won at the St James Park – Chelsea lost there, Liverpool drew while City, Everton, Spuds and Manure are yet to play there.

    Giroud scored a winner and missed a sitter that should’ve put the game in bed. I enjoyed Tomas Rosicky’s display, especially how he said Tiote to f… off. 😀 TR7 has been a true leader and went through evolution from The Little Mozart to The Great Warrior.

  129. James Bond says:

    we win against Cardiff and we will be +4 in the CLEAR – and all will be well again @ Glics

    yeah, I reckon Swansea will win against man city.

  130. James Bond says:

    The ref wins at stamford bridge, long may live the oilers money, ehhhh

  131. TotalArsenal says:

    What happened JB?

    Also good to see that Suarez – seen by many as super quality – does not score in the top games either with no goals against both Oiler teams.

    Admir, on a day when OG hands us the three points it is good to put things in perspective. I dont think we will get a top striker this January or maybe even this summer. We might get an experienced back up but nothing more than that. The priority for me is a tall, strong, technically gifted DM. Sign him in January and we might win the league.

  132. TotalArsenal says:


    I am not far away from Plokton and Kyle of Lochalsh, East of Isle of Skye on main land Scotland. How are you coping with the continuous severe weather?

  133. James Bond says:

    plenty of decisions going against LiverFOOL – clear penalty for Suarez, a couple of red cards not even getting a yellow and so on and so forth – very blatant

    Rodgers was open in his criticism last week re- ref’s , will he have the guts to go against his best friends team and be as open ? I doubt it.

    I wish we had a game like that where a ref favoured us against the top 6 for a change, in that fashion…yeah yeah, I know I know – and pigs will fly.

  134. James Bond says:

    and Suarez was immense @ Skipper

    both for man city and even today , he was every where and created quite a few chances – it was like Suarez vs Chelsea

    I do think that he got injured and kept playing, I am expecting an announcement that he is injured and out for 3-6 weeks ( Wouldn’t surprise me) kudos to him for trying and doing all the right things.

  135. TotalArsenal says:

    Okay JB – I know you are a Suarez advocate and I agree he is a good, if not great, player but many criticise Giroud for not scoring against the top teams in the PL and so it is only fair enough to point out that the Uruguayan does not always score when it really matters either. It is amazing how the Oilers get so many decisions in their favour and how the less rich clubs are less fortunate…..

  136. TotalArsenal says:

    Gerry – would be great if you could do a match analysis at some point tomorrow or Tuesday. 🙂

  137. James Bond says:

    that’s fine @ Skipper

    Suarez I think created the first one, but anyhow – he looks to be playing in a team full of selfish players, the Suarez of now is definitely AW’s dream signing (the old suarez was selfish but this one is well n truly world class)

    If , the release clause is 70 million and our whole budget is 70 million, then I wouldn’t hesitate spending all of it on securing his services.

    trouble with Giroud is that not only he fails to score or have an impact in big matches, he isn’t prolific enough against the lesser teams either…if he was then he may not have been this exposed and regularly criticized .

  138. James Bond says:

    MANAGER REACTION – Chelsea 2-1 Liverpool
    Liverpool boss Rodgers on Samuel Eto’o’s challenge on Jordan Henderson: “Eto’o was very fortunate to be on the pitch. The challenge was a poor challenge. I know we scored from it, but he was nowhere near the ball.”

    Rodgers on late penalty appeal against Eto’o: “You’ve seen them given and Eto’o was not even looking at the ball. He’s been streetwise and cute and was looking to block Luis. If he’s intentionally blocking our man it’s a penalty is it not? But Howard Webb was on the spot and we have to accept it and move on.”

  139. James Bond says:

    it’s been a while since Gerry last did one of those, would love another one of his fine fine MR’s with ratings, his first was one of the best, I had read .

  140. Just had a look, McBastard ( has to be my favourite name, you should feel privileged I have given it to you !. hahaha )
    I can see why you love it up in Sweatysockland, it`s a bit different to the Dutch Alps !.
    No problems here, had a cracking days sunshine !.
    I would have Suarez at £70m….imagine the statement that would make !.

    That is a cracking result today, bearing in mind we lost our top goal scorer ( in all comp`s ) and third highest scorer and our two highest assisters !. Not the sort of rotation for the squeamish !. ( that will be me ! hahaha )

  141. TotalArsenal says:

    He always has an impact, even on the big games, JB. That is the bit that you and many, many others are missing. Wenger wants goals from all over the team and expects Giroud to play a multi-dimensional role. With Theo, Santi, Ozil and Pod we have players who can score the winners against the top teams and OG will always play an important role in achieving this.

  142. TotalArsenal says:

    Cheers Cockie, it is a special area and Henry (the dog) loves it too. In Plokton they enjoy the benefits of the golf stream and palm trees grow here well.

    Agreed it was a cracking result, and now we can build further on it.

  143. The most important thing is that we beat the Big 3 and others as a team, not who scores the goals !.

  144. James Bond says:

    yep, I see where you are coming from – however, Me and Glics’s would argue that our creators would be more lethal and maybe more multi-dimensional if there was a genuine goal threat playing up front in a more fluid “3” complimenting our system or a SQ playing along Giroud, with that killer instinct to improve Giroud further and make him step up his game as well.

    Poor quotes coming out from his interview given to the french media , where Giroud says ” I don’t want Arsenal to sign another striker, The boss can rest me – we have plenty of quality in Theo and Poldi.

    Reality check , Giroud – you don’t make the decisions and it seems you are far too comfortable with no competition for you at the training ground either – also, we have made the following bids for the following players, whilst you, giroud and the pod have been fit and raring to go

    Cavani, David Villa, Higuain, Suarez and BA – so that’s 5 SQ striker in 2 windows.

    in short, concentrate on improving your finishing and final 3rd, leave the rest to the professor and GLIC.


  145. James Bond says:

    make that 4 SQ strikers and not 5.

    what a rubbish decision that was by BA to sign up for Chelsea , ehhh ? does he even make the bench for them ? he should have stayed at Newcastle or AW should have snapped him up by offering Chamakh and bendtner to the Geordies, ha

    looks lush from the link , Glics posted

    I likes !

  146. TotalArsenal says:

    Thanks Glic – you would not expect such images 600 miles north of London, would you? 🙂

    JB – It is hard to get a striker who is a genuine improvement on Giroud in the system Arsene wants to play. Your much disliked Lewandowski would be one who could be an improvement but I dont know many others. I can see your point though, but would be surprised if we sign that sort of striker in 2014. I am not against it though, of course not! 🙂

  147. TotalArsenal says:

    Nice one Cockie – add a few love shacks and the world is your oyster! 😛

  148. James Bond says:

    Lewandowski would be Giroud’s replacement and not one to play alongside him or get the best out of his holding play or other defensive qualities, I Feel.

    If we didn’t have Giroud then sure, Lewandowski may not be a bad signing but like you said, we need a genuine SQ striker and neither do I think of Lewandowski as such nor would he be able an improvement on Giroud.

    there was a reason why Ozil had so many Assists for RM – he had pace to deliver his vision or finish it off in with the likes of Ronaldo, Higuain and Benzema

    Glics, what did you make of Sczny’s performance ? : ) I know, TA hasn’t watched it yet, so Can’t ask him.

  149. Enjoy yourself Totes, it looks a cracking area and will have to have a holiday there myself one day !.

    Lewandowski….yes please !. I am a bit mystified as to what happened in the rumoured David Villa saga as didn`t he go for something like 5m euros ! and also wouldn`t have Remy have been a good loan deal, I`m sure Arsene could have out persuaded him against the other French geezer…Alain Depardieu !.

  150. James Bond says:

    you see teams like,

    Man city = Negredo, Aguero, Dzeko, Jovetic

    Man utd = Rooney, RVP , Hernandez, Welbeck

    Chelsea = Torres, Ba, Eto’o

    Arsenal = Giroud , Bendtner (on his way out) , Park (on his way out)

    that is hardly any competition for him at the training ground, no ?

    I don’t want a striker to replace Giroud, I want a PLAN A with Giroud being plan B, if that makes sense ? we already have a plan C in Poldoski/Walcott.

  151. I haven`t seen any of it, JB. I will have to watch MotD tonight !…..looking forward more to Szczesny`s rumoured goof than Girouds goal !. hahaha

  152. James Bond says:

    Villa = 2.25 million and not 5 mills @ Glics

  153. Even more of a bargain then !. Didn`t Farca try and extort £10m from us ?……..now if only Gazidas hadn`t opened his big gob to the world and say how much money we had to spend !. 👿

  154. You might like this JB.

  155. James Bond says:


    there was an interesting stat that crossed my eyes…did you know that Man utd didn’t concede a penalty in their last 76 matches ?

    I wonder what are the numbers for both man city and chelsea in that area.

  156. James Bond says:

    no, that came out all wrong, swap concede with awarded – 76 matches and not once has ref awarded a penalty

    quite astonishing that.

    eat your hearts out both you Koc and Sczny.


  157. TotalArsenal says:

    That makes sense JB – a plan B would be good to have. I kinda expect Pod to be sold and be replaced next year, but it is just a feeling. Also, we have midfielders who are expected to score and with Ozil, Santi, Ramsey and Ox, and hopefully soon Jack, we have plenty of fire power in that area.

  158. AB says:

    TA. Your Pod hunch seems right – if we buy a Draxler or Reus. I still think we should wait to see what a fit Pod could deliver with a run of games in his second PL season; all the signs have been he could make quite an impact. But he won’t want to be starting most games on the bench, and he has a way to go to displace Santi – but it would be good to see him try.

    Your DM plan, I sort of buy into. Yes, a commanding player there could only add to us; but I don’t feel we are weak there at present – in fact we have both depth and flexibility in terms of style options. I could see Wenger buying big here next summer, with Arteta playing less and Flam more of a utility squad player. I don’t think we have a prayer of buying at this level in January though.

    I’m not being simply negative here! I think, as noted before, our areas of risk are a) CB and b) Striker. A major injury to Mert or Giroud would spell curtains for our season at present. The latter we do have options over, but CB we are horribly thin. I agree with you that a short-term utility cover at striker is probably the best we can hope for in Jan – Ba would still be great I think. But we won’t get established and experienced quality CB in Jan, certainly not to be in an understudy role – we will do well just to hold on to Verm in Jan. But a young quality player – why not?

    A top day for us today. And frankly, if we stayed lucky with injuries, I think we have a squad strong enough for the rest of the season. SQ at DM or winger next summer will be our quests. If we got some striker cover and one for the future at CB in January, and I would be one very happy punter.

    Whatever, we start the season TOTL!!!!

  159. TotalArsenal says:

    AB 🙂

    Fine comment and mostly agreed. An injury to Giroud or Mertesacker would have a big impact, no doubt about that. I reckon Sagna and Koz could hold out for a while but it would leave us exposed on the right.

    Up-front, we would have to change style of play as Pod and Theo cannot play the Giroud role, and the rest is too inexperienced/unproven. This, no doubt, would cost us points whilst we are adjusting to the new system.

    I would love a DM who plays similar to Flamini and can take over from him gradually so the Frenchman becomes our ideal sub. A good DM could also act as a CB if required, and save us from the risk of serious injury to Arteta or Flamini, which would really leave us exposed as neither can play constantly at the required level. Wanyama would have been brilliant for us….

  160. AB says:

    TA – yes I see it. My hope is we come back again for Bender; he has touch and timing, all classic Wenger refinement. I’m less sure about Wanyama though – he has the presence for sure, but the wit to go with it? I hope we move decisively before the World Cup though, as might have been done for Oz before the last – RM got him for around £12M if I remember right. Of course, if we are buying as English PL champions then we should have no trouble attracting the right calibre. Maybe we could commit terms in January for transfers in the summer, but I understand the reluctance to do this given the risk of injury?

    Our league position, continued presence in the CL, and improving financial muscle all mean we are in a great position this January if Wenger finds someone he actually wants to buy. I wait with a heightened interest, but won’t be surprised if we buy no one. I continue to trust in Arsene!

  161. TotalArsenal says:

    Yes I like Bender as well, AB. Wanyama I like a lot and there is growth in him as he is only young. But Wenger decided not to go for him this summer and I cannot see it happening any more now.

    I am not counting on a new player either this January but would be nice 🙂

  162. Before I hit the sack and I don’t me my scrotum with a sledge hammer !.
    A lot was made of Szczesny`s goof, but I think the most stupidest thing was Dopey Jenks or should that be…… Sleepy Jenks, when Bendy was screaming for the ball with Krul still way out of his goal !. Fair enough he did well to chase down the Barcodestard player, showing his athleticism, just a shame he`s got a “fatigued” brain !. hahaha

  163. Highbury Harmony says:

    Coupe thoughts from the game:

    1) Great flick on header by OG and great placement on the free kick by Theo! However, how the hell did OG miss so poorly shortly after in the 68th minute after Theo’s volley was headed away on the goal line?!

    2) First half was very nerve-racking, Newcastle dominated the chances in the first half and were all over us, much like the Chelsea game. It’s reassuring that we fought back in the second half and came away with points yet again, but we’ll need to have more influence throughout the entire match against better sides imo (cough Bayern cough).

  164. geoffchase says:

    Hi all

    Saw the game on arsenal tv here (delayed)… My quick thoughts:

    A. Newcastle played 100% throughout and a very physical in your face game. Surprised a bit at they thought to knock this team back. If that’s been their approach in their recent run it says more about opposition then us.

    B. Newcastle, many fouls aside, were very disciplined in team defense and form. Always numbers back and aggressive pressing.

    Against that, it was clear to me it likely wouldn’t break open as a game pretty quickly, I thought:

    C. We gave up zero or one clear chance of real quality, defined as likely. They gave up one to two we spurned, likely on in 68th, but we made the most of our others with our goal.

    D. We defended “in the death” for a cricket analogy, very well. And in the periods we were not in control which I thought were relatively brief until the end.

    E. Jenkinson, yes, a brain explosion!

    I’m not at all disappointed we ground it out. To me doubt was low throughout that we’d get one. Just a question of when! Or finally!

    Anyone else noticing a clearer top 2-3 separating, at least for now?

    Cheers — jgc

  165. macko says:

    hello friends English, it was a very good game but not recommended for heart !!!!
    @ Gerry you are quite right Santi was not made ​​to play on the left, Podolski would have been better for this position with Gibbs behind him 😉
    Jack Wishere and really below its current level I do not understand why he persists in offensive to play while his natural position is more focused on defense, A.W wait maybe Jack realize itself is not made ​​to play before it makes me sad to see a player of such quality is lost in his game 😦
    Finally a goal Giroud but has done a very very average match in his interview after the match he prayed for a new striker does not come to Arsenal, he is crazy 🙂 🙂
    for me the man of the match is Flamini, we end best of 2013, autumn champion, 1er in PL I hope the second half of the season will be as exciting for us 🙂
    Go Gunner !!!

  166. macko says:

    I wish you all a great year and best wishes, in case we would not have an opportunity to dialogue in the meantime
    Happy New Year to you English

  167. TotalArsenal says:

    Morning guys 🙂

    Good observations by HH, Macko, Cockster and theChase. Goonerdom can be divided into two camps: those who mainly focus on individual performances and those who focus on team performance. Giroud works so hard for the team that he often lacks the strength to finish an opportunity with focus and technical balance. Maybe he should be fitter but he looks pretty well trained to me. Maybe he should preserve his energy better, but I bet Arsene tells him to run the lines constantly. Maybe he needs more competition but I doubt you’ll find a more self critical and motivated player in the PL.

    Jack’s performance deserves some criticism but nobody has mentioned how he saved us quite brilliantly from a certain NU goal, and how he adds a bit of bite to our game.

    I saw 11 players battling it out for a crucial win. There were many mistakes but as a team they stood up to get us over the hill. A win against Cardiff (not easy as fatigue will set in properly) will set us up brilliantly for the remainder of the season, no matter what Cockie has to say about it hahaha 🙂

  168. Gerry says:

    TA -You’ve got mail

  169. Gerry says:

    I hope it got through okay, my home hub failed

  170. Hahaha Totes. You make me sound like….The Voice of Treason instead of Reason !.
    Have you got Fozzie working in your McBastards Restaurant serving McFluffies ?.

    It will soon be the Torture Window !. Does Arsene try to strengthen the squad to try and push on and win the EPL by thinking….”we may be TOTL, but to win it we will need just that bit more SQ and as Monster rightly points out with his logical sense, we are worse off like for like ! ” or will he be arrogant/stubborn and possibly delusional enough to think he can win it with the players he already has at his disposal ?. Will he gamble with our historic chronic injury record ?. Will he gamble on the ” Fatigue Factor ” ?. Will he buy players who are not scared of the BIg 3 and who will not freeze like fluffy bunnies in the “Expensive Cars” headlights ?. Will the other Big teams be scrooge like and not buy ?. Will my Hampton look bigger after shelving out £100 for the ” We guarantee a bigger shaft ! ” kit ?……….bastards !…..just unwrapped it….it`s a fcuking magnifying glass !. Could have done with it , when reading the small print in the Ad` !. hahaha

  171. VCC says:

    Cockie……….Don’t hold your breath when the January window opens. My take on it is = Mr.Wenger will probably go with what he has and say “we have the Ox coming back”. “That will feel like a new signing”. and also we have Diaby in the wings to help out for three minutes.

    The only purchase I can see is something like a Berbatov……….stop gap , but definitely NOT SQ.

  172. Have we got a match report coming? Gerry, if the e-mail won’t work, just cut and paste to this thread and ToTL can do likewise into a new post… I didn’t get a lot of pleasure (beyond the result) from yesterday’s play, but it’s grown on me (just a bit) with a little time and distance. I’ll hold off until the report appears…

    In the meantime, it seems the TW must take center stage. Personally, I think Berbatov would be a great signing…15 minutes a match and he will score some goals and get us some points. If we can indulge the likes of Bendtner, why not Berbs?… He’d scare the crap out of Bayern if (somehow) we had a chance to nick the tie at the death as we did last time around… Didn’t Sir Alex spend 50% more on him than he did on RvP? Certainly he’s gotten plenty of “rest” in the intervening seasons…

    The desire for “super-quality” makes some want us to (try to) spend 70 million on a single player. That he’s not for sale, I think, only makes the suggestion more tantalizing for those who (secretly, maybe?) relish they’re own lack of power. How can you be wrong about a proposition that has no chance of happening? We can agree to disagree, or say that stranger things have happened, but betting the farm (or the club) on a player who is (or would be…) a very loose cannon and is by far the most aggressive er, how do I put this…referee manipulator, EVER, in English football, would suggest a lack of common sense AND morality that, I would hope, is something the club doesn’t want to embrace… Some will argue that winning is all that matters, but I would have to disagree… For me it’s a non-starter, but observe that I didn’t even mention the name…If it doesn’t happen, you can’t blame me for leaking the idea… 😆

    Nope, sorry, I really don’t see us breaking the bank in the window. We already went big on a single player in the last window and yesterday’s match (or at least our lack of effectiveness from open play) suggests the peril of all eggs in one basket. My guess is that if we do any buying it will be for value and for the future and somebody from off the radar. And, unfortunately, given that we’ve got no easy road in EITHER of the remaining tournaments (and could easily be out of both by the end of February…) we can’t really promise too many playing opportunities to any potential pick-up. As such, we’re likely better off waiting for the cheaper prices of Summer. Such logic won’t stop the links (of course) and the raising of unrealistic hopes…

    But who am I to deny people all their fun? Let the sauces spice and sweeten the regular fare as they will… 😀

  173. Gerry says:

    Afternoon all. My hiccup at this end probably stopped TA from posting the review before they make what they can of the day, between showers.

    I hope he reads my ‘Stop press’ message first


    Now, thats the voice of reason 17.

    Lets see what Arsene does, but my take is that he will only buy if a great opportunity comes along.

  175. VCC says:

    I hear what you are saying 17ht………but if Wenger buys another promising, off the radar type of forward, as you put it, will they just sit around and not be used ala……..Sanogo/Gnabry/Miyaichi/Park……even Afobe/Akpom. Ok I hear you say Sanogo is injured, but I still do not think he would play him even if he was fit.

    We need a proven SQ forward and then we WILL win the league. £70mil outlay will bring more the other way if we win things.

    And, attract more SQ next year, and the year after if need be.

    Just saying,imo only, of course.

  176. VCC says:

    Terrance……..don’t you start as well…… 🙂

  177. VCC says:

    We need ONE more SQ (CF) and then watch us win….The ghosts of the thirties will be rocking, believe me.

    BTW, when are we catching another game 😉 I want to see your latest female addition. 😀

  178. Gerry says:

    17HT – I had no connection to the internet for time this morning, and my email copy was saving as draft either. In the end I decided to switch back to my older router, which what is working now.

    But as I did not get the finished post done and successfully sent until about 10.20am. Totes spends about an hour or so ‘dressing them up’, which would have killed his day out with the family. However, it gets dark up there quite early, so I think it may appear around 5.0pm.

    My view on the TW is that I don’t want us to buy just to win the title this year. Players who come, I want them to be still good players at the end of a 4 or 5 year contract here. The likes of Berbatov, and any other aging ‘star’ will want a minimum of a 3 year contract, 2 years of which you will get bugger all return from.

    However, I am with you on the second point, in part at least. I do not think their will be many SQ players available that will come here when they can go for silly money elsewhere? However, the super quality player of the near future might well be attracted to come here?

    Now given the 3 or 4 areas that we may need to fill to make sure we have a decent back up/frontline players, then clearly they are not going to be of the £40m grade. So the priority positions are better filled by excellent potential players, who will still have a resale value if things don’t work out, than only plug one hole while we leak in three others?

  179. Gerry says:

    VCC – Sanogo is injured, but he was always going to be a long term project, who cost next to nothing. Akpom is in line to go out on loan. Afobe is still struggling with injuries, but probably will be let go this summer, as will Myiachi unless he can come good soon. Park I think will get a run out in the Cup if we get past Tottenham, just to advertise him, so they may get a small fee for him.

    Gnabry’s position re a loan will depend on who does get signed. But at the moment, and I suspect through the ‘easier fixtures we have coming up, will still be a part of the main squad and get to play more often? Another long term project.

    I still do not think one signing will create the same team spirit that we have now, unless it is Cavani? If they know the are riding in to rescue our poor failing squad, then they will think the are superior?. We want somebody who is in it for the long haul. Wants to work as part of the team. But be of the right quality to ADD to our current squad, not divide into SQ and helpers?

    The fact that we will be top of the league come the start of the transfer window does open more doors than if we were in fourth and going off the boil. So the win yesterday was a big plus in that respect. It also means that neither Sagna, Vermaelin, or even Bendtner will necessarily leave before the summer. The lure of winning the Title with a club they have been a part of for a long time, may mean it is a big reason to stick around? Two of the three need not leave at all if things work out well of course?

  180. 17highburyterrace says:

    Gerry, I am looking forward to you post as I have a couple of things to say about the match. In the meantime, talking about the transfer strategy seems worthy, esp. if I’ve got somebody who knows and appreciates the youth players…

    Obviously, there’s a real tension between those that want to build something over time and those who want (or *need*…) us to compete in the nearer term. Unfortunately there’s not a lot of evidence, as of yet, that FFP or roster restrictions are helping to level the playing field or that they will over time–If Man City (or other clubs) can write off their youth-development projects (including facilities building) against what they spend on 1st team transfers and salaries, pouring money down the hole WILL be the only way to compete…

    I think a reform of the loan rules is the most promising area so that more people get to see more good players even if they’re eventually funneled up to their mother club. We get to (or have to, depending on your view…) watch Szczesny learn on the job…Atletico Madrid get to borrow Cortois but they will have to watch him go back to Chelsea sooner than later… We almost dropped points at Crystal Palace letting our loan player (Chamakh) get Arteta sent off and that policy should be universal…Luckily, on that day, our tall, young keeper did the job and our lead held…(That’s foreshadowing a defense of our pole in goal once the match report is up…)

    Consider me skeptical if not at the opposite end of the “faith in youth” spectrum as you are Gerry, so I empathize with VCC when he laments over buying another young striker when we have so many who look like they won’t make the grade or even get fit enough to have a chance… Time waits for no man, however, and past performance isn’t a guarantee of future results, so buying “proven” talent doesn’t always work either, even if the “names” excite the fans who only watch highlights. We need to develop our future players but not in ways that cost the first team points or cup-tie victories. That we have a manager who tries to balance these (very) contrary desires means the future is reasonably bright. Still, it’s hard to get excited when, in essence, every player in the world is “on-loan” and can be claimed by the clubs where money is no object…

    But that’s a long term, structural issue. For this window, I’m not sure why a wily veteran like Berbatov wouldn’t take a short term contract with us if it gives him a chance to showcase his talent for clubs in mellower leagues where he might find a final contract. The prospect of big minutes fighting against relegation at Fulham must lead to many a lot of long night of espresso (or absinthe 😯 ), Gitanes and (sad) poetry from beneath his Bulgarian beret…

    If I were to be honest, I *would* like a couple of signings this window…A stop gap striker who might give us those 15-20 mins if Poldolski can’t or provide a similar (or different) look in the forward line if Ollie (or Theo) can’t do the business AND one for the future who shows the potential to really make it, in any position, really but probably RB/CB/DM is the most pressing need. Sign Sagna AND buy a promising RB (to compete with Jenks) or a right footed CB who might pair with Vermaelen for the FA cup matches. Overall, I think we need “freshening” at these positions (and at keeper–i.e. Bendtner and Fabianski can’t be seen as long term solutions and Jenkinson has a way to go to prove that he might… Flamini and Arteta and the younger guys now and again are serviceable in front of the defenders, but also not long term solutions…)

    So there you go… Match report? 😀

  181. Gerry says:

    Nothing on the match report yet. They have had some pretty severe weather up there, and the rain is only just clearing. But, as I said before, it will be getting dark up there soon. I am awaiting an email confirmation sometime soon.
    Just hope you find it worth the wait?

  182. 17highburyterrace says:

    Well, I won’t wait too long…Being Monday I think a little snow hunting will be the order of the day…Time to gather gear here in a minute…

    No comments on my (misguided…) ideas on the TW?… I’ll take your silence to mean that you agree with everything… 😀

  183. James Bond says:

    a little something to keep everyone going until Gerry’s MR.


    what a difference a week makes ehhh.

  184. Gerry says:

    HT, I think you have polarised the view between youth and ready made player a tad too much. There are those player that are a year or two ahead of Gnabry and the Ox that are still open to further development?

    Proven elsewhere, but not in the EPL is another step which is not youth or a season only type?

    However, I have already made my views on loan deals. I think the loaned club must have a stake in the player they are signing. for example:
    Nico Yennaris on loan at Bournemouth. He hasn’t played a minute while he was there, including yesterday’s match, and he is due back on January 2nd.
    We are hoping to sign Morata on loan from RM. but if our squad is still winning and scoring he too might not get a game and just return?

    Where does that help the player develop? If we have an option to buy, or say for our services to development, we get a 10% of future sales, if we do not buy, we have an incentive to play the player?
    You then limit the size of the total squads, so rich teams cannot simply hoover up young talent and have them in cold storage, an see them go to waste. it should mean that the young talent will have more opportunity to play, and it spreads the up and coming talent around more clubs.

  185. Could be this sort of TW !.

  186. Gerry says:

    i just remembered I had not fed the pigeons this afternoon. i usually do it around 1.30-2.30pm, and I get about a 100 of them coming to top up before they find their roosting spots. luckily it is a light evening here and they were still waiting, even though it was 3.30pm.

    The one I rescued seems to be doing okay. It is feeding alright, and its poo is not that horrible green stuff that is a sign of a terminal infection, so i am hopeful it will return to the flock once it gets it strength back and the weather eases off.

    We had a very severe storm overnight last night, and the rain is causing problems elsewhere in the County. Luckily for me, so far the gales have all been coming from the south to west quadrant, and I am protected by High buildings in that area. If it gets more northerly it blasts through the front of the house, and it is colder from that direction too.

  187. Gerry says:

    No TCM, more like ‘I have £12m in my pocket, take it or leave it!’

  188. James Bond says:

    ahahahahahahhaahahahhaahahahhahaha @ TCM’s share


    that fella is really good, he did one on the man utd scums as well , along them lines, pure class – laid into RVP.

  189. A hundred Pigeons !……Stretch has just levitated his lap top !. hahaha

  190. James Bond says:

    well done @ Gerry – that’s very considerate of you to do so , it is loads of pigeons, no doubt they are all fond of you !

    yep, the weather has been rather horrible, lately and continues to do so

  191. Lets keep the festive mood going !.

  192. James Bond says:


    posts a lot of good comments and sensible stuff, not sure why he sits on the fence instead of joining in the discussions, mostly.

  193. James Bond says:


    The Arshavin one wasn’t as good perhaps because he is no more ? decent none the less.

  194. 17highburyterrace says:

    Hey, I do most of my shopping in thrift stores…The thing (I’ve found) about buying retail is that most of it is crap and getting it in hand–so you can actually try things on, examine closely for true quality, etc. so as to avoid the hassle of having to return it–is that your choice is STILL limited… But hey, that’s just me and if I ever was stupid enough to go for a syrup mine would probably be just as bad as Satanic Stan’s… Love the vid, of course, however… Ah, Arshavin, speaking of not examining closely enough…And, like AW, I still respect him…as a man…

    Gerry, when I talk about reforming the loan system it’s more along the lines of creating feeder clubs so that it becomes like American baseball’s minor league system. It’s a long way off of course, but given the corruption rampant in Spain, our agreement with Betis, might be a starting point. Currently I don’t see the (prideful?) clubs in England doing likewise…They’ll just hope they get their very own Fernandes or Tan or Hull Tigers guy… Like I suggested a couple of days back, let’s be hopeful Alisher likes our colors (colours?) before we break out the kneepads and skimpy knickers in our efforts to get at his money…

    That weather sounds bad…Still Sunny here 😦 … My snow hunting skills will be severely tested but I’m all geared up and almost out the door… Just need to apply the sunscreen… 😀

  195. Gerry says:

    I think we might hear from TA within the hour, Unless they are having to take mighty detours to get back, with washed away bridges?

  196. 17highburyterrace says:

    OK, match comments then I run away… Gerry, always fearing for the worst?…Much as I do when I see some of those line-ups you suggest… 😆

    The ACTUAL lineup worried me and it seemed to play out. We started well and kept them pinned in their half for the first 10 mins but made no chances. IMO we really had nobody to “carry” the offense… Rosicky and Santi pop up here and there but can’t really do it. The one is just soooo one-footed (as is Wilshere…) and the other is just too small and doesn’t have the acceleration (as does JW currently)…. All three made plenty of basic errors and just don’t have the (dare I say it…) *presence* to be the main man, esp. if you’ve got a whistle swallowing ref. That was a lot of fouls Tiote, et al got away with. In the end we got ALL the yellows, no? The same (not able to really carry the attack..) goes for the forwards (Ollie and Theo) too. They both have plenty of trouble when they try to help deeper on the pitch and real issues trying to carry the ball or looking up and finding a teammate or a shot. A real shame that RvP had to split town for the greener pastures. Yesterday, obviously, we missed Ozil and (even) Ramsey…

    The defense is good however. Per (but for conceding the late corner…) was Per-fect as was Sagna even if he looked for a ref bailout a couple of times when he should’ve known none would come…Gibbs looked iffier throughout and now he might be out. Luckily he made it long enough given that the other two lefties (Nacho, TV5) were left behind (supposedly…) due to illness…

    Obviously, Bondy’s bitch needs to avoid the casual clearances. Was it worse than the giveaway by Koscielny at the end of the half? (Or Per’s at the end of the match) Yes, yes it was… That said he seems to be improving and you can’t teach size…thankfully he was big enough to save the long shot (end of the 1st half…) which might’ve stayed under the bar if he hadn’t.

    On the goal…It will be credited to Giroud but it was all Theo and then Krul not being quite good enough for HIS one test of the match. Theo was (as) unlucky (as Giroud was woeful) that we didn’t double the lead moments later. Again, both guys worked hard all match but they are both far from complete strikers… At least they’ve got their heads screwed on and are working hard for the team. Strikers don’t always have that sort of mentality–witness sleepy Loic Remy and uber-selfish Ben Arfa amongst yesterday’s opponents…

    Watching the match I was left not feeling particularly optimistic about the 2nd half of our season, but in the light of day, Newcastle (plus the ref) was a tough assignment and we got past it, which in the congested periods is really the main thing. We even did a bit of rotating even if it was under the guise of injury and illness… Onto Cardiff and then Spurs at home in the Cup. More chances to rotate and get others involved without sacrificing results, we hope…

    OK, Squatchy is off on a snow hunt…Wish me luck, it’s thin, thin, thin out there… L8RZ 😀

  197. Gerry says:

    That is very good HT, you can repost it as a comment after the post is posted?

  198. VCC says:

    By order of the GLIC…keeping up the Christmas spirit.

  199. VCC says:

    Like this one.

  200. VCC says:

    Hi 007…….it’s not that I sit on the fence, it’s mostly my point of view is taken the wrong way. I love Arsene Wenger to bits. As I’ve said many times before, he is God in my house. BUT, I just think he should go the extra mile sometimes.

    Already I’m being accused of impatience and we should stick with youth and nurture our players through.

    This is a great policy, but we will never win with youth/prospects alone. We have to invest in some SQ players.

    I’m sure if every one was honest they would agree if we had some extra/older/quality players these past few years we would have won something.

    I’m not advocating we just buy…buy….buy just to get success, but I’m definitely saying, right now, purchase a SQ Centre forward and we will win the EPL THIS year, not wait for another 6/7/8 years.

  201. James Bond says:


    there is a lot of merit and substance behind your comments.

    considering, we have been sticking with the “Youth and nurture” policy since the last God knows how many years and winning, plenty of trophies.

    yep, we have done that and now are in a position to blend it and mix it with SQ signings – and fortunately, this is what AW realizes now as well, hence you will only see SQ signings or no permanent signings at all, until his targets become available.

    If people accuse you of impatience after 8/9 years, then sadly , you have to ask such people to define “Patience and Impatience ”

    even the teams with great youth academies and products, seen one to two SQ signings every season or in every window just to keep improving.

    we shouldn’t be any different and we are now in a position to do just that.

    also, people tend to forget that we got Ozi for 42 million, however, we did save around £20 million in wages per Annum + 10 – 15 million on player sales .

    in short, we have plenty of money still available for the right players coming in – financially we are doing fantastically well and we should not hesitate to do that, if it ensures the PL trophy

    fully agreed with you!

  202. TotalArsenal says:

    New post New post 🙂

    Gerry has written a thorough and excellent match report that will keep us going for a while.

  203. You are allowed to have such opinions Vic`s !. I`m more to your thinking and it doesn`t stop me posting. In fact between me and you, them others are fcuking deluded and cant see the wood for the trees in my sensible logic of like for like factor !. Remember….mums the word !. hahaha

  204. James Bond says:


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