Arsenal v MU: Preview and Line-up

Happiness is a warm Gunner! Come on Danny: Show the flat-faced Dutchie what a beast you are! :)

Happiness is a warm Gunner! Come on Danny: Show the flat-faced Dutchie what a beast you are! 🙂

A late Saturday kick-off against Manchester United at the home of football is always an exciting prospect. Even though both teams are currently in UEFA cup positions on the league table, this game still means a hell of a lot. A win for either team will boost morale and can set off a winning run of games – so desperately needed at the moment.

It is hard to predict this one, as both teams have heavy weapons in attack but dodgy defences. The fear of losing might weigh more than the desire to win, which might lead to a (subconscious) acceptance of a draw. A win for Arsenal would only be a second one in 15 encounters, and nobody should expect it to be easy. The good thing is that we are for once playing at home when these teams meet for the first team in a football season – usually we play them at the theatre of nightmares after an international break or a tough CL match, resulting in us playing below par and leaving all three points in the Manure.

So, here is our chance to make a statement. To say our PL season is not over at all, that we are willing and capable to fight…. And that we can now beat so called Angstgegners. And let there be no doubt about it: Manchester United has had the psychological advantage over us for a long time now.

Wenger will need to show he has fixed the softness in our defence: not easy with the players available, but they are his players so he should show us what he is capable of. Upfront he now has Giroud back, but Theo has had a little setback apparently…. Sigh. Regular readers know I rate Giroud significantly higher as our holding CF than Danny, but I guess the Frenchie will start on the bench for this one. An ideal line up for today would be OG central with Alexis and Danny operating from the wings, and hopefully we will see this at some point (at least).

The biggest worry I have is who we will put between the defence and attack. Jack is a given: we need his skills and personality, and for him this will be a very big game: the sort of game with which he can announce himself onto the big stage (at least for this season). I reckon Arsene will go for experience and solidity, and with both Flamini and Arteta available, it would make sense to play them both in front of the defence. Wenger might opt for Ramsey instead of Flamini or the captain, but Aaron really needs to step up his game if we are to win today.

I expect Jack to play in the hole and to be targeted constantly by the MU players. Everybody knows that Jack on the ball in space means danger and that’s why he gets fouled so much: simple team tactics rather than the popular belief that our genius is often too ponderous on the ball (which he seldom is).

Behind Jack, I am going to go for Arteta and Ramsey. Ramsey, because Wenger believes the Welshman will hit form again and the best impetus for this to happen is giving him plenty of confidence…. Wenger is a Y-manager and not an X-manager after all, for those who know what I am talking about. Arteta is our most composed and organised midfielder for the deeper role, and when in form he can still pull it off. We all know that we need to strengthen in this area, but for today’s match it is Arteta rather than Flamini for me. What Wenger will do re the double pivot remains a question though: will he go for compact…. FlamTeta… will he go for more linkage between defence and attack… RamTeta…or will he go all futuristic……RamShere in the pivot? You tell me!

Louis van Gaal, or the flat-faced Dutchie as some like to call him, will prepare for this well tactically. He will be looking at pouncing on our obvious ‘lesser strengths’: RB, DM cover and CBs, and at eliminating our strengths: Jack and Alexis. But he also has to cover up his weaknesses in defence and will pray his attackers earn their weekly wages back for once. We might see him start with 5-3-2 with the hope that he can steel a goal from us on the counter… or he might go full on attack…. I have not got much of a clue to be honest.

I know some, especially the ‘Gold Fingers movement’ (D-Money, Steve and James Bond 🙂 ), will want us to go full on attack with the aim to simply score more than we concede tonight. But I like us to be as solid as possible and to play this game maturely and effectively. We need patience and self-belief: play tactically strong and disciplined, as only then will we have a realistic chance of taking all three points of the Mancs. Can we do it? Big question, but I think today we will come good.

Preferred Line-Up:

————Szczesny——————

Nacho – BFG – Chambers – Gibbs

———- Arteta—-Jack————–

Ox———Alexis———–Wellbeck

—————-Giroud——————

Predicted Line-up:

arsenal v manure Nov 14

Come on You Rip Roaring Gunners – Let the Canon Roar!

Written by: TotalArsenal.

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129 Responses to Arsenal v MU: Preview and Line-up

  1. 17highburyterrace says:

    Hey Total… Good preview and line-ups should be out in a moment… Things are very low in the Goonersphere but they can always go lower… If you read what I wrote in the previous thread, you’ll know that my expectations are not high for this one. I just hope we show some positional discipline, i.e., helping each other out defensively and that we show some good teamwork and technique going forward. I can’t really tell what’s up with the players available but it wouldn’t surprise me to see both Arteta and Giroud back in the first 11 in a (rather desperate) attempt to restore a bit of shape (and discipline) to our line-up…

    Anyhow, good job and hopefully we Gooners can stick with the business of trying to enjoy our club no matter how grim things get. ..

  2. JM says:

    My preferred line-up:

    Starting:
    (GK)Szczęsny, (RB)Chambers, (RCB)Mertesacker, (LCB)Monreal, (LB)Gibbs, (RCM)Ramsey, (LCM)Arteta(c), (CAM/CM)Wilshere, (RIF)Welbeck, (LIF)Oxlade-Chamberlain, (CF/CAM)Alexis

    Bench:
    (GK)Martínez, (RB)Bellerin, (DM/CM)Flamini, (CAM/CM)Rosický, (CF)Giroud, (LIF/CAM)Cazorla, (LIF)Podolski

    *Alexis to put pressure and press on Man Utd’s CBs, which could lead to direct path to goal via mistakes. He is a clinical forward vs GK and inexperienced CBs.
    *Welbeck & The Ox as workhorses on both flanks, supporting defence and attack; Welbeck, a better presser, in front of Chambers; The Ox in front of a more experienced fullback in Gibbs. Secondly, both flanks would have English national team connection.
    *Wilshere to readjust alongside Ramsey & Arteta in CM, forming a controlled perimeter screen in front of our backline when defending – they should be ready for any opportunities (via winning back balls; opponents’ mistakes in passing etc) to restart counterattack; Alexis to readjust at CAM/our centre attacking 3rd position when defending – together with Welbeck & The Ox on both flanks, while all three prepare to move forward when counterattacking opportunities arrive.

    ==============

    Just announced line-up:

    Starting:
    Szczesny, Chambers, Mertesacker, Monreal, Gibbs, Arteta, Wilshere, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Ramsey, Alexis, Welbeck

    Bench:
    Martinez, Bellerin, Flamini, Rosicky, Cazorla, Podolski, Giroud

    It is a 4-2-3-1 line-up. Seems like: Arteta(RCM) & Ramsey(LCM) in CM; Alexis right flank, The Ox left flank, Wilshere CAM, Welbeck CF.

  3. TotalArsenal says:

    Cheers guys, as predicted…. COYG! 🙂

  4. 17highburyterrace says:

    Man Utd: De Gea, Smalling, McNair, Blackett, Valencia, Carrick, Fellaini, Shaw, Di Maria, Rooney, van Persie

    Subs: Lindegaard, Fletcher, Herrera, Young, Mata, Januzaj, Wilson

    Man U line-up appears extremely defensive…Carrick and Fellaini are supposed to be their game throught the middle? Or maybe just Rooney trying to run the break and play out wide to Valencia and Shaw?

    Our line-up also looks pretty tentative, to me…but some extra pace/power on the break choosing Ox over Santi? Both teams trying to avoid losing?…

  5. TotalArsenal says:

    Looks like 3-5-2 or 5-3-2 to me for Manure. Strong pressure on our FBs for sure. Chambers will have his work cut out and so will Gibbser…. COYG! 🙂

  6. TotalArsenal says:

    A win will put us fourth, so big incentive. COYG!

  7. Admir says:

    How on Earth we are not one goal up already? 😮

  8. 17highburyterrace says:

    Alexis wide open if Jack slides it over…. 😦

  9. Admir says:

    I’m nervous as hell. If I were a smoker, I’d already spent the whole package.

  10. Admir says:

    De Gea has been incredible so far. 😮 I like our play so far except for our finishing.

  11. AB says:

    Is it going to be (another) one of those games….? God I hope not. Now is the time to get a big win. Please! COYG!!!!

  12. henrychan says:

    We will win.. if the referee do his job fairly..
    2-0 before break.. hehe

  13. 17highburyterrace says:

    De Gea’s made a lot of his own trouble with his kicking…but, yes, he’s kept us out so far…

    Ramsey and Ox looking bright thus far…and, to me, we seem far more organized with the Capitan out there…

    We need to make them pay….

  14. Admir says:

    With Dean in charge?

  15. 17highburyterrace says:

    Rambo needs to drop Gibbs in there…Not loft it into the higher rows…

  16. Admir says:

    Di Maria is a menace.

  17. AB says:

    Manure starting to get into the game. This all has a horribly familiar pattern to it at the moment. But I can’t fault our effort and purpose.

  18. Admir says:

    Come on, lads, score against these imitations of players in Manure shirts!

  19. Admir says:

    This was a ridiculous first half. How we didn’t score at least once is a mystery.

    Giroud to win the game?

  20. 17highburyterrace says:

    Agreed with AB, we’re playing hard and the effort cannot be faulted. We looked best pressuring their D but the Wilshere chance was the only clear-cut one…a simple square ball to Alexis would’ve done the trick.

    Chambers, I think, is having a good match with the exception of that late final ball well forward. His intervention in the one really scary looking United move was key…As was the team keeping out the resulting 4 (!) corners. So far, Dean is doing fine by me, but his linesman blew it and we should’ve only had to defend 2 of those…

    It’s all a bit on the knife’s edge and it will likely come down to a bit of luck or a defensive gaffe…

  21. 17highburyterrace says:

    2nd half on…and we’re keeping it deep in the United end… C’mon Boys!!!

  22. 17highburyterrace says:

    Jack’s done… Looks bad…

  23. 17highburyterrace says:

    Walks off, at least… Only 2-3 months out?…No? He’s gonna try to run on it…Sometimes the bad ones are fine in 5 minutes…. Now he sits down…

    Santi coming on…

  24. henrychan says:

    If Giroud in.. Santi will also.. but who will be replace.. Ramsey or Wilshere..??

  25. 17highburyterrace says:

    Gibbs own goal… Well, it was a lovely dream….

    Gibbs crashed Szcz to start the mess…

  26. Admir says:

    And, just like we expected…

  27. AB says:

    this is all so horribly familiar…

  28. Admir says:

    What’s next? A rain of shit will start pouring only onto our half?

  29. 17highburyterrace says:

    Now Szcz hurt… Martinez coming in…

  30. henrychan says:

    We rely on Martinez.. he’s great..
    Coyg.. do your best.. We must win it back .

  31. Admir says:

    Is it time for me to start writing “Wenger out”? We usually score an equalizer after that (e.g. Everton).

    Wenger out!

  32. 17highburyterrace says:

    Good football and we’re laying it all on the line to get back to even….Alexis header too central…

    Still lots of time, but we’re leaving a ton of room for them on the break, too…

    Cynical Santi, but a good one to take…

  33. 17highburyterrace says:

    Admir, why not “Wenger Out” earlier?…It seems pretty silly and reactionary to base it on the scoreline…though I’ve come to expect it… 😦

  34. henrychan says:

    Ramsey out.. so we go for 4-4-2..

  35. Admir says:

    @17 – we are playing the worst Manchester United in the last 25 years (yes, Moyes’ United was better than this one) and we can’t score against them. It’s an inferiority complex that our manager has grown and transferred on our players in the last eight years.

  36. 17highburyterrace says:

    That’s fine, Admir… So why not start with the “Wenger Out” earlier?

  37. 17highburyterrace says:

    2-nil…

  38. Admir says:

    Because there is a level of tolerance for everything.

    There has been a school of thought that has defended Wenger for years:

    ‘Oh, it’s just because he didn’t spend money like the others.’

    ‘Oh, it’s just because he had so many injuries.’

    ‘Oh, it’s just because the referees hate us.’

    ‘Oh, it’s just because there is a conspiracy against us.’

    Now, this ugly creature scored his millionth goal against Arsenal. I don’t have illusions we will stop being Wenger’s hostages after this defeat.

  39. henrychan says:

    8 min.. coyg.. miracle often happened

  40. 17highburyterrace says:

    All that may be true…So why hold off on the declarations until we’re in a moment of suffering? That’s my sole question here… If you want to stump for a change at manager why hold off until the scoreline goes bad?…

    I guess the inverse of hope must be blame?… I dunno… Have at it, of course…

    Di Maria bungles on the 1 v 1…

    As predicted, the dark times get darker…

  41. 17highburyterrace says:

    Nice strike from Ollie…

  42. henrychan says:

    Got to sleep.. 2.30 in the morning..
    Bye..

  43. Admir says:

    Safet Sušić has been the only manager in the history of Bosnian football that has managed to take us to the big tournament. He failed there with his notorious idea that playing without left full-back against Nigeria was a good one. He felt even deeper after the game when he said that Nigerians surprised them with their quickness.

    He was given a new three-year-contract this summer. We started qualifications with a lot of injuries in our defence (Kolašinac, Bičakčić) and Emir Spahić, our captain, retired from the national team. We lost at home to Cyprus against the side that hadn’t scored a goal for two years. Two draws against Wales away and Belgium at home were followed with a disastrous three-nil defeat at Israel. Sušić resigned after that defeat.

    Arsene Wenger has been the best manager in the history of Arsenal but it’s time to leave now. He is done as a top-class manager and if he wants Arsenal to succeed, he should leave. Being 15 points behind Mourinho after just 12 league games, having 33 percents of victories so far and being much closer to the relegation zone than to the top after spending the biggest amount of money in one transfer window in the club’s history should not be acceptable.

    But then again, I highly doubt that our current president can name more than five players from our team and The Board are hardly any better.

  44. steve says:

    what day is it today?

    Oh wait there’s a team scoring against us on the break it must be a Saturday.
    Hang on it could be a Sunday i suppose.
    Shit i suppose it could be mid week as well

    😆 round and round we go, same shit over and over again, will Wenger learn?
    OF COURSE NOT!!!

  45. steve says:

    btw OX best player on the pitch by a mile today

  46. Simba Murerwa says:

    It is scandalous what Wenger is doing. With the low salaries we are paying if clubslike Chelsea abd City are not coming for our players then most if them are not good enough. Why doesn’t Arsene use players like Campbell, Bellerin, & Rosicky? Players like Arteta and BFG are just past it. We have been blaming Monreal of late but where is BFG when all this mess us happening. The best way forward fir Arsenal is to miss too four. How can we lose at home to a team with no defenders

  47. Admir says:

    @steve – I disagree. The Ox was excellent in the first half when we dominated but later he started to fade away. Again, our English players showed their usual lack of composure. Danny Welbeck – with all due respect to his pace, energy and determination – has finishing of Kaba Diawara. Jack picked the wrong solution while being in front of De Gea. The Ox did the same when he tried to hit the net from an awkward angle. Gibbs was the only Arsenal Englishman to hit the net.

    I think I’m getting physically ill after this defeat. My stomach hurts and my throat is sore.

    Arsene Wenger should leave for my own good too.

  48. steve says:

    Admir, sorry mate my mistake, i forgot how brilliant Ramsey, Cazorla, Arteta, BFG etc were today 😆
    OX was the only one driving forward constantly and even out shone Sanchez today, who’s passing was pretty wank today to say the least. Jack fucked up the goal but apart from that put in a great display.
    Say what you want mate but the English players performed better than the others today.

  49. AB says:

    Er its all Wenger’s fault then? Looked to me like we played pretty well, dominated the game, created good chances, didn’t get any breaks. Pain in the arse and frustrating as can be. But a cause for massive blame? Not in my book.

  50. Admir says:

    I agree, mate. 😀 Wilshere’s display – apart from his mistake – was the best in our team.

    Alexis wasn’t at his usual level. Ramsey has been in the tunnel for a while, same goes for Cazorla who has been Arshavin-ing this term. Arteta and BFG don’t have enough pace, especially when Ramsey and Koscielny aren’t at their best/available to complement them. Chambers made a great block in the first half.

    Giroud has scored the same number of league goals as Welbeck has.

    We lost to the team that had Smalling, McNair and Blackett in their defence.

    Oh, and Arsene won’t sign anyone in January. It’s a great thing when you can play a revolutionary with someone else’s money.

    I think I’m going to play Football Manager 2015 in the upcoming weeks. It’s the only chance for Arsenal to beat a big team this season.

  51. steve says:

    the only thing i am personally blaming Wenger for is constantly playing so many people forward every fucking time!!
    Both full backs high up the pitch and BFG, leaving just Monreal to cover the break – WTF, when will he learn not to use that tactic it always ends with a goal being scored against us.
    Apart from that, with what we had i thought we looked very dangerous, i can’t speak for others though.

  52. Admir says:

    @AB – it might be the final drop. We have failed to beat teams like Leicester, Hull and Swansea this term, we couldn’t beat Spuds at home either and even Anderlecht managed to stay undefeated at the Emirates (that’s the stadium that was supposed to become our biggest advantage). Now, we have lost to the worst Manchester United in the last 25 years.

    Sorry, but in my book, that should be enough for manager to leave Arsenal but he is an economist and they don’t leave 20 million pounds just like that.

  53. steve says:

    I think people are forgetting that although they had a shit defense the way we build up play meant by the time we attacked them they had almost the entire rest of the team back there to help them as well. Thats why it was so difficult to score, If you gave Welbeck the opportunity that Rooney had against a stupid fucking team that always leaves the counter on and has left half the pitch to run into unguarded i am sure the poor fucker would score. Its a little different against 10 men in the penalty area lol.

  54. Admir says:

    @steve – actually, Welbeck has missed that sort of chances this term as well. One on one against Manchester City, for example. His finishing is dreadful. Perhaps we should go with 4-4-2 until January. Than The Board should ask Wenger to either sign a defender and a defensive midfielder or a resignation.

  55. AB says:

    @Admir – we’ve played rubbish on occasions this season, but today wasn’t such a day. We can argue the failings of the coach over a season, but on today’s performance I think the rhetoric is more driven by disappointment than evidence/reason.

    @Steve – I totally agree with the diagnosis, our naivety in defence. But much of this rest on how the players express their discipline as much as how the manager steers them. Wenger has already expressed his frustrations on this point. Its all very well in the case of Chambers – he can be excused a rush of blood given his youth and inexperience. But Mert and Gibbs? No such excuses there.

    But, for once, the problem in my book was not with the defence. The problem was we couldn’t score (at least until it was too late) against a team that Leicester had put 5 past. A lack of quality up front? Maybe a little. But a lack of luck on the day too, for sure. Shit happens. And we will bounce back.

  56. TotalArsenal says:

    I thought we played well for a long time, just missing sharpness upfront a bit. Turning points were Wilshere’s injury – he really is our conductor – and the defensive horror moment, gifting the Mancs a precious own goal.

    What we lack is confidence and leadership and I agree with some of the Wenger criticism in this respect. Bring on next game.

  57. TotalArsenal says:

    And let me say it again, Welbeck is no CF. And so good to see Ollie back…

  58. Admir says:

    Santi Cazorla’s contribution in the league: 1 assist in 11 appearances (the one against Everton). Not good enough for an attacking midfielder that was supposed to replace Özil.

    Danny Welbeck’s goal-per-minutes ratio in the league: 2 goals in 786 minutes on the pitch (I took only his Arsenal record into account). Olivier Giroud has scored 2 goals in 85 minutes on the pitch.

    Our defensive record: we have kept a clean sheet in three matches (Aston Villa, Sunderland, Burnley) out of twelve. Last term we had 17 in 38.

    My guess is that Per Mertesacker struggles to cope with our high pressing. It stretches our team too much and destroys our shape. When Per goes forward like he did today, we are too open for the counter-attacks.

  59. Gino92 says:

    A couple of Arsene Wenger quotes:

    “At the moment, defensively, we are very naive”.

    ” I don’t know why we had nobody at the back at all” (in reference to the second MU goal).

    Looks to me like either we don’t practice enough defensive drills or the players have somehow stopped listening to the Manager altogether. Which is it exactly? How do we keep repeating the same mistake almost every game (seemingly)? Can’t we just have a few dedicated defensive players that are intelligent enough to know what the consequence (of losing the ball) will be if all 10 of our outfield players end up in or around the opponent penalty box instead of always having 2 or 3 players camped around the halfway line when we are trying to unlock tight and stubborn defenses? I mean, here is one of the greatest managers ever and he himself has NO clue why we had nobody at the back to prevent a counter-attack!!! It is just unbelievable. Nobody ever learns anything in this Arsenal team. Fucking hell…!

    I am so very confused by this Arsenal team of ours… God help us all!

    We need some serious inquiry and/or rebuilding of our entire defensive setup as soon as the Winter Transfer Window opens, otherwise, we will be a middle table team come May 2015, and that will be a real shame especially for Alexis Sanchez and Jack Wilshere. Their passion and performances deserve so much much better…

  60. D-Money says:

    Think it was Admir who said it: Wenger has an inferiority complex v the big teams (except Spurs) and has transferred that onto the players. The Chelsea game was similar, we had good possession but never looked like scoring. Yesterday was more of the same, good posession, but rarely looked like scoring. This is down to luck, the players do not BELIEVE they can beat these teams and that’s where Wenger has failed. He needs to leave, think he is drawing very close to losing the dressing room entirely, clinging on based solely due to his “legend” status.
    When you read AB in-game commentary where he says things like “it all looks familair, similar patterns…etc.” That should tell you something. We are not learning from our mistakes and we have not only stagnated, we are moving backwards at a rapid rate. To use the infamous Claude analogy, that”s what happens when you keep goods in the fridge past their sell by date…
    As for the game itself. Two kwy moments shaped the outcome for me.
    1. Jack had a 1v1 and failed to finish, at this level in this game that is simply unacceptable, especially when he also had the option to pass to a wide open Alexis. DDG made himslef big and made one of MANY saves from our MANY shots on target. (Ask yourselve, how many saves did Sczcesney make? Recurring theme here too, dominate game opposition score from their 1st notable chance.)
    2. Sczcesney and Gibbs calamity. One of two things happened here, either Scz didn’t call for the ball (loud enough) or he did and Gibbs heard him but didn’t trust him to collect it. In any case Scz then punches the ball all of 5m staright to Valencia and then doesn’t get back-up, at least until danger is over. Both should have done better here, but this mess of an OG was caused by Scz for me.
    Yes our finishing should have been more clinical, but DDG won that game for Man U, when was the last time Scz won us a game? Each shot the oppositon has on target seems to end up a goal right now…
    Wenger switching to a suicidal high offside line with a back 2 that consists of two of our slowest players in Per-Nacho is “defensively naïve”, not the players for chasing a lead. You do not have that option available to you as Wenger because you have failed to sign players who can play a high offside line and still have recovery pace if shit hits the fan, so just don’t freaking do it. (Gibbs and Chambers are instructed to be false wingers so they won’t help here)
    A lot of us are hurt and dissapointed by the loss, but none of us can even pretend to be surprised by the manner of the loss…we have seen it all before…we are not learning from it…
    2.5 more years of this drivel, not sure my heart will be able to withstand 2.5 more years in order to seee life after Wenger *sigh*

    (Long and emotionally raw comment, expect it will be muddled and clumsy in parts, sorry in advance)

  61. D-Money says:

    Above: I meant *NOT down to luck

  62. Είναι όλοι οι Έλληνες να μου!

    Yesterday was probably the best we’ve played all season. Shit happens. It was one of those days. Things can only get better. Fate intervened. The Gods deemed that United should win. We’re still only 2 points from top four. Just a few problems to iron out. C’est la vie

  63. Milo says:

    Whoever lived off of coining the phrase “nice guys finish last”, was wrong. They usually finish no lower than fourth but never 2nd or first. The scary part of that is, I didn’t just absent mindedly throw in the word usually in regards to the argument against that well used philosophical quotation.

    Wilshere passion??? Best player??? Ramsey is playing like crap, he might NEVER come out of it. I don’t think that will happen, but that’s almost beside the point when we are relying on not only an injury prone player in Wilshere, BUT a complete baby. Yes he’s a baby. Wenger isn’t blameless here. The time he spent on the pitch at Swansea, he spent most of it bitching and crying at the official. Then he loses it completely after play was rightly blown down, following a foul he committed. I would have sent him off. I thought the most ridiculous part of his tantrum was his reaction to the whistle, not his one to Fellaini. Fellaini was right to chide him for losing it and Wilshere AGAIN showed us he will never learn. It’s stuff like that, the opposition loves that. I know I would. He’s not what any or most of you wish to think he is. He’s also not WHO you want him to be either. People compare his temperament to Rooney’s when he was a child??? Maybe…It doesn’t make it any more right in my eyes, but Rooney was a better player…He still is. It doesn’t matter what it looks like all the time, he has started getting the job done again, as he did 10 years ago. He not only held his composure on the ball, he ultimately finished us off. No headless chicken, no unnecessary touches and the right decisions made when it mattered most. How many more times do I, I won’t say we, as no one else seems to care, or want to see it, but how many more times do I have to watch this little child attempt to lead, or be a major POSITIVE factor for this side??? It’s actions like those that keep referees minds and memories sharp and not in your favour. If I go on the assumption that they are human beings, with relatively normal or average thoughts and feelings, then I can assume that like me, if I was on the end of that show of petulance, I wouldn’t give him a break. The rest of the side I would, but not him. I’d reserve special treatment and consideration towards him. I might even offer him a pacifier in the parking lot after the match, when no one was watching. I’d embarrass him. I would, even if no one else saw or found out. That’s what I would do. England will never have a prayer, when ill temperament and discipline on and off the park, haunt their best players. You can be arrogant, you can be a son of a bitch, you can be Ghandi (however you want to phrase what the opposite of arrogant and son of a bitch are), it doesn’t matter. It’s when you show weakness, in a living BASED on competition, you will lose. Or draw, or finish fourth. Golden Jackie is weak and I’ve reserved special treatment for him, I’ll admit, as I’ve never warmed to him. Those are my reasons, right there. Some people never warmed to others and never will. Just like those referees, we’re all human. Only the very best of us can truly erase personal grudges, or just distaste. Maybe no one ever has. I’m leaning towards that, in fact.

    When is the last time all three groups of players in a match played well TOGETHER??? I know even less about goalkeeping, than I do about the other basic two facets of play. No match performance is ever perfect, but an overall sense of health in a match, we have failed to achieve, for the most part, for the last number of years. We have nice players, we do for the most part. I’d take quite a few of them individually, but as a whole??? Hahahahahaha, I’ll just leave that as a telemarketing answer, no thank you, maybe tomorrow (NOT). The NOT being left unsaid, on most occasions.

    Wenger in out, it don’t matter to me, at least I know what we’re going to get. A bunch of different solutions put forth by us, with no one agreeing (with me in particular) or listening (especially to me)in the end. Why do I write??? Because I want to. How many “fuck,(s),(ing),(ed) etc, etc, did I write in there??? Yeah I guess I did that to not look like Wilshere, but hey, hahahaha I’m only human. Not paid as much as good ol’ Jack to be human (average?), but hey, I guess that COULD make my case stronger or weaker, in a number of ways.

    I’ll continue to write every now and again, when I fell strongly, if for no other reason than out of interest to see who’s crazy or bold (if what I write has value to the other people on here), enough to agree. As long as I keep it relatively sane, you have no moral obligation to allow or disallow my contribution.

    Keep up the blind faith in us. No brackets around blind for me.

  64. steve says:

    Milo its called passion mate go get a dictionary and look it up, its the stuff that just made you write that uncharacteristically childish tirade on a player that drove the team forward for the time he was on the pitch.
    All the best players have it mate and sometimes it can explode in some quite unique ways, especially playing in massive games and definitely after having just missed a glaring opportunity to score weighing on your mind.
    With more and more experience you can control that passion, funnel it constructively and then in the end use it to fuel your career to the highest heights but what you don’t want to do is loose it altogether. You mention Rooney, he’s 30 now can you remember what he was like at 22, i can.
    A huge percentage of everything good went through Jack yesterday and when he went off Cazorla just could not replicate that quality i’m afraid.

  65. steve says:

    the problem was that NOBODY had their shooting boots on yesterday, Sanchez, Cazorla, Welbeck, Ramsey, Wilshere, OX all fluffed their chances.
    I am happy in the knowledge that this is a one off but obviously extremely worried that the goals that were scored against us certainly were not.
    I remember quite a few games we’ve had in the past (as have many other teams) where the ball just isn’t going in the back of the net or the goal keeper gets MOTM etc. What you don’t do is concede the other end and we let in nearly two goals every game now so on an off day for the front line like we had yesterday instead of sitting back and excepting a disappointing draw as i would have done in the past i now dread the utter certainty of a loss.
    Its a very bad turn of events and a consistent pattern that needs to change pronto.

  66. 17highburyterrace says:

    Not a lot written here post match but some of it I like…Milo, in particular, writes with a ton of passion and some (I believe, much needed) introspection…In the end, he’s all too right…What we bother to write matters not one little bit, but we do so because we want to… Well done, I say… Our impotence can lead to hyperbole, of course, and the player in question (at the very least) deserves the scrutiny you’re suggesting. If we each chime in our thousand words we’ll probably see it’s not completely black(Jack) or white…

    The same is true about the manager or the overall approach at the club. For me, in choosing to allow my emotions to get strung along by my football club, I have to accept that there are ups and downs. Where are the ups? Beating ManU is something I’ve been craving more than just about anything else and it will have to wait, again… What’s funny to me is that amongst the non-steroidal “big” clubs, now all American-owned, we *should* be ahead. Wenger and his board and owner have by far the best plan. That we’re still behind United (and their willy-nilly, free-spending ways) hurts…Now, as I watch Liverpool struggle against my favorite South London club (Crystal Palace)–despite a first minute goal–it’s just sad to me that Arsenal really are no better. We’ll have plenty of trouble ourselves in these lesser derbies, I fear.

    Obviously, I object to the calls for Wenger Out in moments when we are all hurting. The big picture plan of the man seems good to me. The market has been skewed by the silly money speculating clubs so buying class attacking talent these past couple of years (Ozil, Alexis) has been a thrill. Trying to patch where the deep pocket clubs have poached seems worthy as well. Having clubs like Chelsea (Cole), Barcelona (Henry, Hleb, Fabregas, Song, Vermaelen), ManU (RvP) and most notably, Man City (the list is too long…) take a steady stream of our players has eroded the core of what might’ve been MANY decent squads over the past decade. Replacing with younger and/or more hidden, talent, first French and French speaking Africans, more recently a couple of German and Spanish veterans who never made it at the biggest clubs in their home countries and–throughout– very promising kids from the England (and Wales) have seemed reasonable responses. On yesterday’s display and feeling that our overall quality has decreased over the seasons, I wonder. Still, even if I can point to obvious troubles in the team, I’m not sure I can find fault with the overall approach.

    So then it becomes about details. We lack here too. Where is the guidance and where is the individual precision which would make the difference, match to match? The great flaw in the Wenger model is the over-reliance on the one man. Managing by consensus, esp. if you’re going to listen to supporters and their wholly appropriate zero-patience approach–after all, they buy the tickets, they want a good time–seems a dead end. Still, the persistence with believing in certain individuals and simply hoping they come good, or overcome chronic injury issues (including to their confidence…) or that they’ll figure out how to manage themselves tactically in matches, seems the province of a figurehead who is unwilling to delegate. That Wenger takes all responsibility, good or bad, is a two way street. It should allow more elements to shine (due to relaxed pressures) but it also can create a culture of complacency. This is a big money sport these days. Chances must be given, but chances must be taken or others must be given opportunities. Yesterday’s match turned on small margins and it could be argued the better team lost. It happens. Moving on and taking positives is really the only way to the next match. Still, how many “next” matches can we wait on?…

    No knee-jerk reaction then (from me, at least) and I’ll hope for better in midweek. (Hope is not a plan, however…) Still, I was encouraged by the returns of Arteta and Giroud and I thought Ramsey and the Ox showed intensity in their play, at least early on. Chambers and Welbeck exceeded my (low) expectations even if Gibbs had a rough outing. Truth be told, of all the British players, the one for whom I have the highest hopes (and even those are quite modest…) Theo Walcott, was unavailable through injury. Alexis, did appear jaded from his travels. If he (and Ramsey) are not completely on top of their running and playmaking (their touches, including the decisions surrounding them…) this current team will struggle to score. Leaving Santi out (for me, and I know I’m alone here…) hurts our possession game and leaves us (far) more vulnerable to teams hoping to play on the break. Going a goal down and being shorn of tactical subs was a real killer.

    Which leads us back to Jack… or Szczesny…or Ozil…or the BFG or Wenger…or whoever else we choose to blame. In the end, the result disappoints but does not surprise me, so what can I do besides try and work through it and create some understanding and (ideally) some emotional distance? Thanks for reading, if indeed you did… 🙂

    Good times… 😦

  67. D-Money says:

    HT good comment. Agree with a lot.
    “Going a goal down and being shorn of tactical subs”- we are to assume Wenger would have made tactical subs and not his normal “oh look we’ve reached the 70th minute, who shall I bring on?” Based on what?
    “The result dissapoints but does not hurt me”-said something similar. A lot of people here and elsewhere online also said things along that line. THIS IS THE REAL PROBLEM. We are not surprised to lose or by the manner we concede goals. We are not surprised by our team making the same mistakes year in year out. We are not surprised our manager isn’t learning from past mistakes and is doing nothing to addresspainfully obvious problems.
    Like I said, its pointless to blame individual errors and players as those will inevitable shift from player to player, but once the same player constantly makes the same mistakes and the manager doesn’t rectify that or remove them from the starting XI, then he is the problem. If we continually succumb to the same tactical and positional flaws, despite players having changed and come and gone over the years, then the manager is the problem.
    As you can tell, I am now firmly Wenger Out, and I can not wait until he leaves. I just hope we don’t let him see out his contract.
    For now, I can only hope we make the top 4 and we actually might as Liverpool are equally shit as us. Saints appear to be our biggest worry. Let’s hope they have a collapse. But if attaining top 4 means Wenger stays, it will be a bitter-sweet moment…

  68. Admir says:

    I must admit that I have that sort of smile when you stamp on a pile of crap and think how stupid you were for not seeing that when I think what sort of a match will be the clash between us and Liverpool next month (provided that both teams don’t improve by that date). It’s going to be The Cripple Fight Of The Decade.

  69. steve says:

    I love the intelligent writing this blog has to offer on nearly all subject matter but i am incredibly glad i have access to the rest of the internet and social media providing its overwhelming agreed conclusions when it comes to player reviews lol.
    If you think Ramsey, Cazorla and Arteta had good games yesterday then i really feel for you and how low your expectations really have dropped as you keep saying.
    MOTM was OX
    Wilshere for the time he was on the pitch was second, playing excellently and if he had scored that goal excellent would have turned into hero.
    Then Sanchez who’s work rate was still high but failed to produce any attacking finish
    Welbeck next with exactly the same description as Sanchez
    The rest were shit, end of story

    Probably why it was so fucking obvious that when those players above failed to produce what they normally do the rest of the shit produced what they always do – a few counter attacking goals conceded.

  70. Milo says:

    Mate (Steve) Rooney dominated an international tournament at the age of 19. Better than Wilshere??? I think so. Both of them aren’t my ideal players by a long shot, but take the Arsenal tints off and you’ll see Wilshere through injury and ill discipline is far behind. Rooney is no measuring stick, so far as making the most of your talent goes and THAT is the most damning thing to say about Jack, as he’s not even where he should be in comparison to that other Great (White) hope for England, that never will live up to his initial billing.

    I thought the best player in the first half was Chambers, followed by Chamberlain, FOLLOWED by Wilshere. Yeah, yeah if he woulda scored once or twice he would have had the perfect half and a solid platform for the perfect match, if there is such a t’ing. Well I hate to break it to ya, but I KNOW he didn’t score. Yeah, yeah it ain’t his job bla bla bla, well in those two situations…IT BLOODY WELL WAS HIS JOB. He didn’t do his job TWICE, when it counted the most and then proceeded to make a “passionate” idiot out of himself. Well done Jack.

  71. 17highburyterrace says:

    D-Money… You misquoted me…I said, “doesn’t surprise,” not “doesn’t hurt.” No biggie… 😀

    Steve, we can all pick and choose, what we want to read and or believe…In the end, it’s all opinions…even if it gets the echo-chamber treatment… For example, regarding your man of the match, Ox… What I said was that he and Ramsey started brightly. IMO he lasted longer but still his power and thrust and all that led to a sum total of zilch. IMO, Jack was far more influential, but alas, his decision and execution in the 2 v 1, followed by the silly or passionate (depending on your read…) head-butting or not backing down (same deal…) vs the big Belgian with the hair… and then getting hurt and doing the whole 6 or 8 minutes of dramatizing (or being brave and valiantly attempting to carry on…), seemed his undoing. Please note, I’m saying I thought he was better than Ox…not worse… (Thanks again for reading the long one, by the way… 😀 ) Overall, our MoTM, for me, was either Giroud (our single moment of true quality) or Arteta who broke up a lot of United possession and held us together at least as well as Carrick kept them ticking…

    Crystal Palace 3 – Liverpool 1, it finishes, so maybe there’s some hope for us yet when we go up to Anfield, Admir…

    The Wenger Out thing is fine, but let’s not kid ourselves, if those who want it to happen today get their wish, it will also require a remaking of the team and the difficulties which have beset United and Pool when they lost their better coaches (SAF, Benitez)… If lesser lights like…Well our whole team, really, but you can pick your poison…the weak/old foreigners (Ozil, Giroud, BFG, Arteta, Santi, etc.) or the young Brits and those with the accents (i.e., add in our Polish-Cockney keeper…) are not held together by the manager, we’re not fighting against CL relegation, but rather from the top division of English football…or at least the top half of the table. IMO, with all the injuries we’re pretty fortunate that we’ve got two weak teams in our CL group and only one decent one in our league…

    Sorry to be so bleak about things, but we can go on and on with the “not good enough” business and attempting to place a spotlight on some players or the manager… Or about how salvation lies in Bellerin and Martinez and Isaac Hayden (or Macey or Afobe or other rising stars as yet unborn)… or Reus/Carvalho/Cech/Hummels/Benzema/Messi in January, but it doesn’t change the reality as I see it…

    Don’t let me stop you, of course… 😀 😦

    IMO, what really needs to happen is that we get better results. Maybe Klopp, in auditioning for the job at Arsenal and with 1st in the group sewn up, will rest a player or 5, say all the right things at the press conference and gift us a result…

    I’d take a draw…What say the rest of you?…

  72. 17highburyterrace says:

    Spurs on now…More fun, we have to hope…

    Sorry to interject in the Milo/F11ngers brouhaha (hahahaha…)

    Bad timing (as always)… Please don’t mind me…

  73. James Bond says:

    there won’t be many games we lose this season playing like that – in fact, it was another a masterclass on display in terms of the gulf between 2 keepers, one a worldie and the other a wanna be .

    I hope for AW’s Legacy’s sake, the rumours of Cech are true and we do land him at Arsenal .

    our lads played well yesterday, like lions , however, in all fairness, we should have been at least 3-0 by HT – JW had 2 glorious chances and he proved the England set up right, by failing to score on both occasions that he is not a goal scorer as such .

    we lost the game in the first half when we failed to score and failed to take the game by the scruff of the neck, even though man utd didn’t have their first shot on goal until the 84th minute .

    is there light at the end of the tunnel ?

    Yes, There is .

    and before we all jump on the Giroud bandwagon – he had nothing to lose by taking that one early and scoring, normally he ends up in row zzzzzzzzzzzZZZzzzzzzzzzzzz – non the less, it was good to see him back , looked hungry and eager .

    DW at LW will most likely solve our LW conundrum, one we have been struggled to fill for a very long time until we thought that Arshavin was the saviour .

    all in all, I don’t think it’s the time to panic just yet – keep the faith and if we keep playing the way we did yesterday, then there is nothing to worry about – come Xmas, we will be right up there but we need to be using the likes of Rosicky, Poldi and Campbell a tad more ?

  74. steve says:

    blah blah fucking blah mate
    Wilshere’s doing pretty well in his international tournament progression so far, MOTM nearly every game for England so far. He missed the goal but i’ve seen plenty of fucking top class strikers miss that type of opportunity in my time, the rest of his game was excellent up until he got taken out by another player.
    What you bitching about?
    How can he improve to make you happy mate, what areas need to be addressed mate lol
    play like Ozil perhaps 😆

    who would you have started with in that position mate? just so i can see who you are comparing him to?

  75. 17highburyterrace says:

    Hull 1-Spurs nil… through Jake Livermore…

  76. James Bond says:

    JW is certainly a better player than Santiago on current form @ Steve

    anyone who says otherwise is utterly biased .

    if only , some of our other players had the Sheer WILL power and passion that of young Jack then maybe we wouldn’t be struggling for results as we have been , recently .

    but yeah, you would have expected to JW to score one of the 2 , I know I did and wear nearly jumping with joy as soon as he was clean through for the 2nd one, he could have even played it sideways to his left for a easy tap in for Alexis .

    anyway, I know he would be the one hurting the most at them 2 chances and us not getting over the line but the thing about football is that it’s always about tomorrow and the future, we look forward to Dortmund now .

    you know what though everyone ? the start we had vs Man utd was more or less the same we had against BM last year in the CL – absolute domination but no cigar, so I can see where people are coming from when they say “same old same old Arsenal ?

  77. Admir says:

    @JB – there is something strange happening with Rosicky so I wouldn’t bet on Arsene giving him more time (not before spring, at least, when Arsene turns to Rosicky to save his buttom as seen in 2011-12, 2012-13 and, to certain extent, last term). When Rosicky played this term, he looked a bit rusty. Something is happening but I don’t know whether it has something with that story about Rosicky’s contract clause about the number of appearances needed to automatically prolong his contract for another year. Still, I don’t believe that Rosicky would be worse than Cazorla. At least he knows how to tackle.

    Campbell is a similar story. He didn’t impress against Southampton and didn’t get a real chance after that one.

    Podolski is closer to the exit door. He would have scored all those chances we had yesterday except he probably wouldn’t have got into any of them. He is an expensive item – 100.000 pounds per week for a cameo or two per month is too much from my perspective, let alone Arsene’s.

    Speaking of Germans, what the hell is going on with Gnabry?!

  78. James Bond says:

    yep, ex spud vs spud = score !

  79. TotalArsenal says:

    Predictable and mostly uninspiring comments. Best to let it all out boys. 🙂

    Anybody who did not see that Jack having to go off was the main reason we lost that game, might want to watch it again. Milo, big sigh mate – Steve said it all already. 😕

    To those who only come here when the shit hits the fan….. Take a chill pill and try to look at the bigger picture.

  80. James Bond says:

    well, you can’t expect Campbell do to well , if he plays very seldom ?

    good point about Rosicky and Poldi , but I guess it’s more down to AW’s preferences than anything else at the moment .

    I will be gutted not to see both Rosicky and Poldi start against Dortmund this tuesday .

    Gnabry is still not 100% match fit but should be involved with the U21’s for the CL ?

  81. 17highburyterrace says:

    I really don’t want to take the. er, passion, out of these debates about players, but they all seem a little extreme to me… De Gea made some fine saves but also had some kicking of the eye-gouging variety. The critical play of the first half SHOULD have been his glaring error and Jack’s shining moment. Likewise, F11ngers (and maybe 007, too) will rip me a new one (as we say over here–over there too?…) but two footed Santi, would have used his right to pass across to Alexis to finish that chance… 😀 “On current form” means little if you cannot take the pitch, just ask our Messy, whose latest idea is winning the Ballon d’Or with Wenger’s help… 😯

    007, Milo and Steve (and anybody else) are perfectly free to point fingers where they want…I think Bond is actually more accurate, however, when he cautions restraint about the Giroud bandwagon. That was a once in a blue moon strike there (and De Gea almost kept it out)…Maybe we’ll get lucky and City will come in for him in the window?… On that note, where’s our Theo? Working on his exit strategy as well? Both those guys, along with improving Rambo fitness should help the cause going forward… Agreed, however, that being able to use Rosicky or Lu-lu yesterday (which the injuries prevented) would have helped…

    My grander point is that it’s all more complicated than pointing fingers and proposing (instant) solutions…

    Keep looking forward (and with an eye to incremental improvement…) as 007 suggests is the better path…

    Hull are pushing hard for a 2nd but can’t quite get it in…

  82. 17highburyterrace says:

    TA… I agree about Jack’s play yesterday, but I also worry about him. He needs to change his game to keep himself on the pitch. The passion is fine, but must get wiser, he also needs to find a way to get “luckier” with his fitness–or more aware and willing to pull out in certain spots, like that kitty cat Ozil, perhaps…

    Hyperbole irritates me no end, but I think it’s what makes the blog-o-sphere spin… 😦 Certainly it’s necessary if you only have 140 characters…

    On that note, Admir…Nothing but respect from these parts about your knowledge of the game or your opinions…Only with your timing… IMO, being a responsible part of any “community” requires being more (not less) sensitive to the feelings of others when we’re hurting…But maybe I’m just from another era or don’t quite get the internet…

  83. James Bond says:

    that was a mighty fine strike though by Giroud @ me Amigo – and that bloody spanish keeper isn’t half bad who nearly got there and was close to punching it out wide for a corner, ha

    actually, I think that Giroud finally has some decent competition in DW and both of them can keep each other honest, both can learn a few things off each other as well , which can only mean – good things to come for Arsenal in the future .

    Theo had a niggle , he picked up an hamstring injury while away with England – should be back soon .

    I just want Ospina back ASAP or us to actually buy Cech in Jan = sorted .

    someone mentioned above that it’s AW’s mentality against bigger teams that appears to be the stumbling block and something that trickles down to the players ? nah – it’s actually our keeper’s brain farts, poor positioning and awareness that keeps costing us – you can argue that it’s AW’s fault for showing utter trust and belief in him for all the bigger games and so on, but it’s the curious case of Sczny – he has all the right ingredients to be a top notch goalie, yet due to a lack of brain or something else – he hasn’t quite managed to reach the same heights as some of the other younger keepers or foreign keepers have managed to achieve in a much much shorter time .

    if we can manage to sort that out, we will be fine going forward .

    just imagine how much it’s paining us right now or it did yesterday ? it’s even worse with AW and all the players *100 .

    we will bounce back, we always do – just lower your expectations like I have – before the season started, I thought we would win the PL in April with a 15 point lead 😀 we are stilling winning the PL but it may go down to the wire in May now 👿

    on a more positive note, both Spuds and Liverpool are keeping our 4th place trophy hopes alive ahahahahahahahahhaa

  84. Gerry says:

    Sorry gang, I am so late coming to this, I thought when I saw ‘New Post’ this morning, I thought it was a ‘review’ not a preview..

    I just read the former in Steve’s comment above. 😆

    Two positives we can take out of the game:

    1, We made them look the absolute crap they are for over an hour.

    2, Seeing RVP slink off, having the fewest passes of all players, including his own goalkeeper. 😀
    True not much else to laugh at. Undone by two players going for the same ball, and presumably, one not shouting early enough ‘Leave it!’ ?
    Not to mention the countless misses of perfectly good opportunities to score whilst we were so dominant.

    However, when you consider they were ahead without having a single shot on target, tends to point to the thought that without that collision, they probably never would have?
    Whereas, bring on Giro, and we get a stunner.
    Sorry if all this has been said, I did not go through all the comments.

    Yes, I think the preview summed up the guessing game quite well. But now it is on to the next game. Which could be a bonus if we won it, as we could end up top of the group? On the other hand, we could experiment with a few of the unused players, and look for league points in the next game?

    No point in beating ourselves up by this result, imo, as apart from the result, the positives outweigh the negatives regarding how well we played. Of course you can focus on the negative bits, but it does not help. Here’s the P & N from front to back.
    Welbeck – Tireless, but not clinical.
    Ox – Paced himself better, still doing sprints in extra time, just the odd pass going astray.
    Alexis – Has kept his form going without a hint of jet lag, just not able to find the net this time.
    Wilshere – Had great drive, and worked as hard as any for an hour. Got his ‘England halo’ on, that saved him from a sending off? Still trying to get on the end of things, and fluffed it.
    Ramsey – Worked hard in the ‘high pressing’, but left Arteta to do the defensive thing. Team as a whole are paying the price while he ‘finds his form’. What happen to ‘keep it simple’ AR?
    Arteta – Did a great job of occupying Rooney in his man marking role, and had probably one of his best games, albeit against a crap side?
    Chambers – Proving he is not a crap right back, nor that bad when going forwards.
    Mert – Apart from the reckless last few minutes was solid enough. Back to his organising best.
    Monreal – Again, no major dramas at CB, until we were chasing the game.
    Gibbs – Solid game in defence and adding width to the attack. Very unlucky to steer the ball goalwards from his prone position.
    Szczesny – No problem in keeping a clean sheet … until the collision.
    Martinez – in a no-win situation against Rooney, did better against Di Maria.
    Giroud – Na na nana nan na Gi-oud – Look very sharp for his goal, not on long enough to have a negative.
    Cazorla – Tried to be creative, and played some nice passes. Still looks way off the player of last season though.

    They deserved better, and it will get better.
    Keep the faith

  85. James Bond says:

    good one @ Gerry
    yep, seeing RVP being hooked off for a bloke called Wilson and not Falcao, now that made my day a tad better ahahahahahahahahhahahahaha

  86. Simba says:

    Wenger is to blame for everything.
    1. You must always play your best player to suit his strengths. He is not doing that with Ramsey at the moment. At his best and cirrectly utilised he is better and more effective than Wilshire.
    2. Chambers should anchor the midfield or play CB we have Bellerin to play right back.
    3. Players wane with age. Arteta, Flamini, & Per are now good squad players not first teamers.
    4. Every decent defence need a ‘marshal’ we lack one now.
    5. Carzola is more effective as a no 10 play him there regularly or Ozil when fit.
    6. Jack has poor decision making he can’t be a number 10.
    7. In last season’s champions league and world cup 2014 Campbell has played better than Welbeck. Why can’t he do it Arsenal?
    8. We need a DM and centre half as P1 in January.
    9. Jenkinson if possible must come back.
    10. You don’t just loose quality players like Song and replace them easily unless you pay a premium.
    11. If golden boys like Jack are not good enough to start let them be substitutes.

  87. 17highburyterrace says:

    Gerry, you need to put numbers next to your points so I can compare them to Simba’s… 😀 (You also failed to name the manager…but then again, Simba failed to name his choice for new manager… More smileys…)

    I think TA has a good point about people coming on and pointing reactionary fingers in our lowest periods. This sort of stretch will test any Gooner, but I would like people to give their coherent (and big picture) thoughts on a more regular basis…Maybe even write a post or two… Wenger Out is fine, for example, just tell me why?… (Beyond, of course, pointing at the scoreline…and then trying to jab the same finger into my eye…)

    On that note, 007, that was about as balanced an assessment of the Wenger/Szczesny confidence cuts-both-ways-argument I’ve ever heard… Well Done, Sir… I still think you might be a hair over-optimistic about our title chances, but hey, to each their own… 😀

    Can Hull hold out against the mighty Spuds with their extra man?… 5 mins left…

  88. 17highburyterrace says:

    Nope…Their one good player (Eriksen) saves them… Actually they need to thank the refs…That’s twice now in recent weeks that soft red cards (Benteke up at Villa was the other…) have allowed for full comebacks…

    Cruel game this…

  89. James Bond says:

    blimey, Erikson to the rescue, arghhhhhhhhhhhh

    spuds have had a shiT season and were whispers about their manager being sacked, yet they find themselves level on points with the mighty reds, yikes .

    Reus injured !!! not that it really matters as he was also injured the last time we lost 3-0 to them 😀

  90. D-Money says:

    I will gladly write a post to explain my views on where this club is at and should be headed. I will also say that whilst I’m aware it was a generic comment, my views on Wenger especially are not re-actionary or knee-jerk, this is what they were before the start of the season and even the last few seasons in retrospect, I just wasn’t willing too admit it then so I blamed a) individual errors and players game to game b) injury pile up c) we are building/paying-off a stadium d) they have more money than us anyway e) we are just a few players away from having a title winning sqaud and Wenger will get them in the next window etc.
    Few seasons later and nothing has changed. The wool is firmly off…and I have consistenlty been saying the same things, including in victory. (But since those have been so rare, has made airing unpopular views during “happier times” very difficult as we have been in a rut since day 1 if we are honest.)

    P.S Spurs won via an Erriksen last minute goal. Draw level on points with us. That is the level we’re at.

  91. 17highburyterrace says:

    Isn’t he (Reus) the guy we need to buy to solve all our problems? The German Kallstrom (or Ospina or Falcao), maybe…

    Don’t know if you’re reading all my long-winded comments, but I think Klopp trying to give us a break is our best bet. Gerry, I’m pretty sure there’s no way we can win the group at this point, but a result maybe gets us 2nd… A couple of days yet to check the math on that one…

    I dunno, watching those matches today it’s pretty sorry the state of English football at the moment… The money clubs hoard all the players but even they (us) have to take chances on injured and/or mercenary types. Poaching all the So’ton players (or in Spuds case their manager) hasn’t helped us or Pool or even United (with Luke Shaw) very much… Match to match (even vs the relegation candidates) it’s all very even but you can wear ’em down over time…esp. if the refs help you out…

    Anyhow, here’s to better days…

  92. Milo says:

    What could Jack do to please me??? Hahahahaha, it’s very simple actually. He’ll never do it though on a consistent basis though. He needs to keep his mouth shut and play better on a more regular basis. I never said I’d rather have Cazorla out there. No. What I would have wanted when Jack went off was for Rosicky to be given a shot and if not him, then Campbell. Neither will happen. Actually none of the positive steps I have written in this latest rebuttal will come to pass. Just as we will never defend properly and never get a true defensive midfield player and a WORLD CLASS striker.

    Maybe we shouldn’t expect more, but you’re not human if you don’t want it. We have been lucky enough, even this past few years, to be able to expect, or at least “want” in full confidence (for the most part) without being laughed out of town. Even Burnley fans want, just no as outwardly because they would be deemed as crazy as Jack and me, which is too bad, as in my ideal sporting World, everyone CAN win, just as in my ideal World, a FEW other people would see others the way I see them. I’ll stick to my story of Jack being a petulant brat, just to round things off nicely hmmmmmmmmm?

  93. 17highburyterrace says:

    I can’t speak for Total, Mr. Money, (in terms of writing a post) but I’m looking forward to it, as I would also from Admir or Simba…Or Milo, for that matter… (Hope, indeed, springs eternal, as somebody must’ve said…)

    Sorry D-M, Spuds are awfully lucky with these red cards which have won them 6 points in two matches…If we cannot finish ahead of that lot…I will literally…I dunno…but, something drastic…even if (I know, I know…) the table doesn’t lie…

    There is one scenario where I think we could finish behind Spurs…If people got their wish and it was Wenger Out, Bould (which is who it would be…) in…

    I know that’s not what you guys are saying but, with the choice in timing, that’s what it sounds like… Again, just a plea for helping to fill the quieter spaces…

  94. steve says:

    Rosicky as a first choice REPLACEMENT to Jack is about the only thing i agree with you there Milo, i think (as do the VAST majority) that Jacks performances have been much better and consistent this season.
    I really don’t see a lot of people saying Jacks performances have been shit thus far Milo, sorry mate i think you’re the minority on this one.
    Join the club mate – (myself and Ozil)

    Maybe…
    If you meet an asshole in the morning, you met one asshole. If you keep meeting assholes all day then you’re the asshole.

    Food for thought for both of us me thinks 🙂

  95. TotalArsenal says:

    Simba 🙂

    If you were a champion of brevity you could have sufficed with your number eight… 😉

  96. 17highburyterrace says:

    Who are these magic DMs and CBs, TA (and Simba #8) to buy in January? The guy at Sevilla? Anybody who is any good will (surely) be subject to a bidding war with clubs whose pockets run deeper…like the one which beat us yesterday–or injured or otherwise not getting playing time at their current club–you know because they’re not very good… To nab one of those So’ton DMs, for example, seems FAR more likely in the Summer, when (we hope) we’re actually above them in the table… Hummels (often injured, btw) will surely go for a record fee + salary (for a defender)… say 40 million pounds each or 80 million total. Is he really that good?

    He might be, and it would be a bold move to pay a defender a strikers fee/contract…Still, my hunch is that AW and Mr. Walmart aren’t quite shopping at Harrod’s with (LvG and the Glazers) on this front, so back to the Sevilla guy or some other fella I’ve never heard of… but at least that puts Nacho on the bench (or at LB). Best bets in terms of guys actually playing are Kos and Deb back and Mert healthy too… I didn’t think he did so badly yesterday and would certainly be a bigger threat at set pieces if Fellaini was marking Giroud instead… Arteta also played just fine for my tastes. Maybe if United go big on a DM, we could pick up Carrick as a Welbeck-ish, Jan 31 kinda thing. He’s not cup-tied in Europe, either…

    Most of us take this faux-management thing pretty seriously, but it’s still GOT to be tougher trying to do it in real life, 8 million pound salary or not… Just trying to manage (my own) expectations, but, as always…WTF DIK….

  97. TotalArsenal says:

    hi 17

    It really is not about availability of quality CBs and DMs, but the willingness to spend money on them. There are plenty of options and there were plenty of options this summer. I dont believe the theory that Wenger does not get money to buy these sort of players. I reckon he thinks he does not need to spend money in these areas.

  98. proudgooner says:

    Hello Gooner’s,
    Well where do i start on this match?
    It was a painful and unbelievable result.
    We did play very very well , probably the best we have played all season. Totally on the front foot and should have been about 2-0 up when a freak own goal not only came about against the run of play but also saw us lose Szcz in one swift and cruel moment.
    Straight after the Manc’s scored the fans who had been excellent suddenly lost the plot or a large ammount of them around me did. Many of them turned on Wenger badly. It was such a shame.
    This was the worst United side i have ever seen us play in a long time. But they are still a dangerous team and only a fool would take them for anything less then that.
    To me that Gibbs own goal kind of summed up our start to this season, a rare error that proved to be very costly which is what seems to be happening all the time this season.
    This was the first time i have ever seen us lose when i have been there, someone i went there with rightly said my run had to come to an end at some point. But we did not deserve to lose this game and losing Jack hurt.
    Positives.
    It really was a good performance.
    OG coming back and scoring of course.

    I left the ground in disbelief . Oh and add to that the ref Mike Dean was shocking. Her was unbelievably shit some of his whistle blows were a joke.

    Keep the faith , get behind our team and the manger. That is what we should do, they were all trying very hard and are just not getting the luck and some poor defending of course.

    For me this season is all about the FA cup and CL now they are our targets and top 4

  99. TotalArsenal says:

    hear hear PG Tips – all should take note!

    Excellent comment 🙂

  100. proudgooner says:

    I know some of you will think, we are Arsenal we should not be out of the title race after 12 games and you are totally right, but the fact of the matter is we are. Chelsea are looking to strong and only city have any chance of catching them now already.
    I want us to really focus on the CL now and give it everything and see if we can’t win it.

    That starts with the Germans on Wednesday, , i doubt we can win the group it is all about pride.
    Wenger has always said that he believes in this group of players and there spirit and they need to show that now more then ever.
    COYG

    TBF, They fought right til the end of the match and we had them on the ropes and could have got the draw, sadly even that was not meant to be :/

  101. proudgooner says:

    Night TA
    Speak soon

  102. 17highburyterrace says:

    I dunno, TA, We’re just in that odd spot where we can certainly spend some money but will it be enough to land people who can hit the ground running? If Kos is still out, of course, a CB must be purchased. At DM, we can maybe afford a younger sort of prospect-type player, which is maybe what Chambers (not cheap himself at 16 million) was supposed to be…

    The bigger problem with the buying is the fact that buying is a commitment. It excites the team (and the support, of course) but then you’re stuck with them. Many people are not at all happy about guys like Arteta, BFG or Nacho–consensus is that they’re “not good enough”–but those guys are the complete spine of our defense at the moment. Imagine if we didn’t have them? Easy answer is that “it couldn’t be worse” and some would stump for any of youth players or contend that the better players are out there or that we never should’ve let Vermaelen go (an argument which falls flat given that he’s played exactly zero minutes for Barca…Now there are even reports we–or United–might take try and take him on loan)… These lines of argument leave me flat…

    All told, when I look around the league I just see a lot of parity–and not of the good variety. Even the big money teams struggle to find true quality players who can really do a job. Sure, they’re OK and if they’re young AND stay fit, you can always sell them on and recoup something. Due to the (TV) money the bottom half teams can buy the rejects and still give any club–except Chavs, at the moment) a match–Chelsea, it should be noted have 2 great keepers (plus Schwartzer as their #3), Terry and Cahill, Azpiliqueta, Ivanovic and Felipe Luis, not to mention outstanding young defenders in Zouma and Ake… And that’s not mentioning all the defenders out on loan… If you think they’re gonna part with any of those fellows (include Cech, sorry, 007) you don’t know Mo…

    So why not buy a Hangeland or an Ashley Williams or (insert name) or some other older player who wouldn’t get an automatic first 11 spot. Maybe if they’re going for their final big contract but still nothing too exciting (example = Debuchy and the collective “meh” his signing generated)… But then you’ve come full circle and got a team full of BFGs and Arteta’s and Nachos (and the injured guy with the mohawk)… Picking the right player is the whole thing, so unless we know what we’re talking about (have scouted them ourselves…) I tend to wonder. Additionally, once the link is made, expect United to come in with a bigger offer…

    Fewer injuries > less pressure/better play > good results > less pressure to buy readymade solutions > good older players mentoring (very) good younger players > better play > better results… That’s the kind of full circle I want to see… Patience, I fear, will be required to unwind the current spiral…

    Sorry (again)…and if I can’t convince you we can do the agree to disagree thing… 😦

  103. 17highburyterrace says:

    Oops, missed TA… Nighty night…

    Thanks PG for the report from the stadium. Naturally, I’ve been missing TMTH and his reports but these are very tough times… Obviously, I’m not in favor of such fickle support in the stadium, but hey, you pay your money, you deserve your fun, at least with most forms of “entertainment.” This modern notion, perhaps supplants the more traditional ideas about support. At the ticket prices being charged, why not?…

    I still need to do the math but I think winning the CL group is beyond us. A result in midweek would (maybe or nearly) wrap up 2nd? After that it’s all in the draw and getting up to a higher level by the time the elims roll around…

    Of course, I don’t know why Dortmund should take it easy on us and maybe another bad result doesn’t bare considering…

  104. proudgooner says:

    17,
    A lot of fans were shouting out your point as well, sayiong about they have paid top money for there tickets. I was not 1 of them myself and everyone is entitled to there opinion.
    On you search for defender and DM situation you are bang on right. It is not an easy task. But that is wre Wenger used to shine. He always found us rough gems. I hope he can find his TW mojo again, that would be nice, if he can find us another Kosh i would be over the moon. We have missed his so so badly probably more so the theo.

  105. proudgooner says:

    It was just a painful result that we did not deserve. For me the Ox ws motm Jack a close 2nd but that miss and him getting injured is just ohhhhh man just harsh and Szcs.
    The problem is we have also got Ospina injured and it just makes things harder for us all the time.
    Just so unlucky

  106. proudgooner says:

    So basically before the season started we were light on defender’s. Now we have Ospina, Szcs, Kosh and MD all out, :/

  107. proudgooner says:

    IMO, It is time to play Hayden as CB , he plays there week in week out, it is his position, his and Bellarin have to step up and play now. Wenger has always brought youngsters though. He should either do that with them if he does not fancy them then move them on and get some other 1’s which as you were saying is not easy, but not impossible either.

  108. Simba says:

    I agree Proudgooner why have youngsters who don’t play whilst the senior players are loosing week in week out. Wenger tries too much to be a genious. How many coaches convert a full back into a centre back. Its actually the other way round. The centre of defence is a delicate position because the majority of errors result in goals. Nacho is an ok left back leave him there. There are many out there whomcan come out and coach Arsenal if Wenger does not want to change and be responsible let him leave. He always gets the credit for the trophies he has won us he must also get the blame for the current woes we are in. You dont need expensive buys to be successful but you need the right mix of players in their rightful positions. There are many players we can buy and play at DM eg James McCarthy, Diame, Song, Huddlestone. We dont need a passer like Arteta there we need someone who break up oppposion play. Arteta must compete at central midfield and sit out like Rosicky and Carzola if can’t beat the competition. One of our challenges is that we have a captain and his vice who are no longer first team material and they have just been appointed.

  109. steve says:

    btw Man utd played with three CB’s two of whom are 19 and also a left wing back who is also 19 and won the game.
    I just find that funny considering all the youngster discussions we have on this board.

  110. D-Money says:

    Precisely Steve. Wenger used to be lauded for bringing youth through but now seemingly has no faith in our current crop, which seems ridiculous. Especially considering the age gap between Bellerin, Hayden and Chambers which is basically non-existent. As for experiance, Monreal hardly has more experiance at CB than Hayden or Chambers for that matter. Constant stream of baffling decision-making ruining us right now.
    Admittedly Wenger knows more about the players than we do, but as the youngsters if you can’t get a chance in this misfiring side then you may as well leave.
    If we don’t trust our young players then we may as well release them.

  111. Gerry says:

    Just catching up on the later comments. I have to say I am more with PG and HT at this moment in time.
    We have what we have, minus another two. It is no good screaming for players we do not have, or are not fit. Hayden for example was in a protective boot a fortnight ago, and has been injured for over a month. NOT AVAILABLE!
    I noticed in the practice photos before the game that Ajayi was in there. So either he is not showing quite enough to get picked, or he is just being squeezed out to even make the bench?
    I doubt he will start in the CL game, but as a defensive option on the bench, possibly. Any minutes he might get there, or against West Brom, will decide if he gets a starting role. As I have pointed out on the UMF site, games come thick and fast – 5 games in the Tuesday to Wednesday 15 days hence, starting tomorrow!

    I said before, we need to get through these next two games, and we might just have a few more players back. But is more than likely that only Giroud will be a major part of these next 5 games. Walcott looks certain to miss out. Debuchy could make the bench for the last two. Hayden also could make the bench just after. Koscielny? Well that is subject to having no reaction when he restarts the serious stuff?
    So here is how I read the available squad of players with 1st team experience:
    (Szczesny – out for 2?); Martinez; (Matt Macey – no experience.)
    Chambers; Bellerin; (Ramsey; Flamini – needed elsewhere; Tafari Moore – .n.e.)
    Mertersacker; (Ajayi -n.e.)
    Monreal; Chambers; (Ajayi -n.e.)
    Gibbs; (Monreal; Flamini- needed elsewhere?; Ormonde-Ottewill – n.e.)
    (Wilshere – out 4-6 weeks?); Arteta; Flamini; Ramsey; (Ox- needed elsewhere?)
    Ox; Rosicky; Cazorla; (Zelalem – n.e.)
    Campbell; Podolski; Alexis; Welbeck, Giroud; (Akpom?)

    While you digest that lot, and pick out any I have missed out? You will see just how stretched we are?

  112. Gerry says:

    UMF Notice to PRINCE – VCC replied to your post earlier. you have not give a prediction on tonight’s
    game
    Let me know before kick off. Otherwise void or a GERNI?

  113. D-Money says:

    Sorry Gerry but all that says to me is, as other players return from injury others will replace them in treatement. Giroud returns, Walcott suffers a set-back. Ramsey returned recently after an extended spell out, Jack is now out for an extended spell. Unending cycle so we need to move past injuries and make a plan B, and as you said, window isn’t open yet (and we can’t be sure any issues will be addressed in window anyway or perhaps only on last day thereof) so only option is who we have in our squad right now and thately must include “not experianced” players? With our lack of squad rotation, players always likely to be “jaded/in the red zone” and pick up more injuries so I just feel like that’s become our clutch excuse when maybe it’s PARTLY a problem of our own making.
    Everyone keeps talking about this Utopia where all our players will be fit and we will start sweeping teams aside…which team ever has that? Football is a squad game and we need to start treating it like that. Only way we can’t deal with our injury crisis effectively. I say “crisis” but for example, having two defenders injured in two different positions should never equate a crisis. (That’s some of the partly self-caused problems)

  114. 17highburyterrace says:

    Hayden is injured but let’s play him! Absolutely brilliant! With ideas like that, it’s true, ANYBODY can manage at Arsenal… 😦

    I give up…

  115. Gerry says:

    Afternoon HT – Yes, I was just pointing out how delicate our situation is right now.

    In my disappearing act of an evening, I have been scouting a little. Although the Brentford v Fulham game was a more a case to see how Toral was progressing.
    I have to say I was a tad disappointed really. He looks fine and works his socks off for the team, particularly in the deeper areas for an attacking midfielder. However, if he gets into the box he does not have the box of tricks to get past he defender. A bit more Walcott than Ox if you like?
    Did catch a glimpse of Ice-Baby (Eisfeld). He came on late for Fulham and had a half chance of getting the scores level, but he shot straight at the keeper.

    I only saw the second half of the Barca v Sevilla match, but is was enough to reinforce my view that KK- see earlier references – is the DM for us, even at £24m. There was one situation where Messi was on a breakaway straight down the middle, heading for the Sevilla goal. KK had a god 3 yards to make up on him, but caught him, tackled him, left him on the deck ,came away with the ball, and no foul! … Brilliant.
    Of course he is not going to do that every time, as the Messi hattrick probably suggests. But he does stick to defending in front of the two CB’s really well. Rarely, by that I mean I have yet to see him do it, get drawn out wide to help out a full back. Instead he stays where the ball will get cut back to. But I will say he is one of Sevilla’s cleanest tacklers. The others looked a crude lot.
    Whether we can prize him away is another matter. But if we go for Bender, they are looking to replace him with KK? So I think we should cut out the middle guy?

    I have yet to see Mings play, but he too looks a big guy, if that is who we end up with at CB?

    Still another month of scouting to go though 😀

  116. Milo says:

    I’ve met an assholes on here, but last night I had a solid rehearsal with some nice folks. So who’s the asshole, by that logic now, Steve???

    Save the platitudes, wisdom and philosophy for another time.

  117. D-Money says:

    HT. I doubt anyone wants us to play injured players. Think it’s the same as where someone says “I’d prefer Wilshere in the DM/HM role instead of Arteta/Flamini” as a better alternative to current situation. Jack is injured now, but that view probaly wouldn’t change for whoever is saying it. Same thing when someone says, “I’d rather Chambers or Hayden play at CB and not Nacho/Per.” Injury to either Chambers or Hayden may not change that view. Am I making sense?
    As for now, really think we should play Chambers centrally with Nacho and drop Per and start Bellerin out wide. Guessing Martinez is due a few games by default if Scz injury keeps him out. No one is pretending it’s ideal, but we need to make ALL of what we have at our disposal right now work for us. Freezing out certain players and playing others to the point of exhaustion/(injury?), with our injury situation is not the solution.
    Having not registered Giroud (despite leaving open a few spots in our UCL roster) for UCL doesn’t help as it means Welbeck continues to play (90 min.) Week in week out since we signed him, something he has never done before in his career and is surely taking a toll on him. Remember he did pick up a niggle on international duty, beginning to fear an injury is around the corner, but we can’t really afford to give any1 rest now LOL

  118. Milo says:

    Sorry Steve, I took that literally instead of figuratively…Still, people have partially or wholly agreed with me on here before. I just figure why say things that everyone else has already written???

  119. Admir says:

    steve at 10:52:

    “btw Man utd played with three CB’s two of whom are 19 and also a left wing back who is also 19 and won the game.
    I just find that funny considering all the youngster discussions we have on this board.”

    You can look at it that from that point of view.

    Then again, United also had Carrick, Rooney, Valencia, Van Judas, De Gea and even Smalling…all of whom have won the league with United and Di Maria who has won Champions’ League with Real Madrid last term.

  120. Gerry says:

    Admir – What I found funny about that is …

    Apart from the Goalie, they all played crap!
    😀

  121. Admir says:

    @Gerry – they did but that didn’t bother Rooney to score millionth goal against us.

  122. Gerry says:

    I know what your saying Admir – It took the ‘master tactician’ LVG to use their most in form player … to man mark Arteta 😆

    It was only when he took time out from that did he score … 85 minutes wasted hahaha!

  123. Admir says:

    Rooney had the same task in 2012-13 at Old Toilet when we lost 2:1 and were outplayed as United were on Saturday. We gave them the opener in both matches, we conceded the second due to our naivety in defence and scored a nice consolation goal in the injury-time. How things change…

  124. Admir says:

    Anyway, the reason I dropped by is to hail Arsenal and Arsene Wenger. Paul Gascoigne said that Arsenal and Wenger paid 50.000 pounds for his medical care. Act of class indeed. 🙂

  125. Gino92 says:

    With Wilshere probably out for a few games, Ramsey strangely (and perpetually) out of form, and Cazorla shockingly a shadow of his former self, surely this has got to be the time for Tomas Rocisky (one of my favorite players) to finally get a run of games and show his qualities (sorely missing in our current starting eleven). I rate Rosicky very highly. Even at his advanced age, he is the one player I trust most to put in a real shift when the going gets tough. He is a forward-thinking player, a superb tackler, always showing determination and urgency whenever he plays. At the moment, he is a very frustrated figure, just “rusting” away on the bench. Yes, he has been given a couple of cameos here and there and didn’t really provide any influence at all but that is slightly misleading. I would like him to start and to play at least 4-5 games in a row. I don’t know what Wenger is seeing in training that makes him not play Rosicky. It is simply baffling to me why and how such a world-class player (yes, I have always considered Rosicky to be world class) is unable to get a few starts in this current “misfiring” Arsenal team. I fear we will probably lose him in the summer… 😦

    Please give Rosicky a chance, starting this Wednesday against Dortmund,and I am sure we will start winning again…

  126. Gerry says:

    Yes Gino, I would in the short term at least, have thought Rosicky was a better bet than Ramsey. However, it seems Wenger is intent on getting AR16 through his ‘bad patch’ in the same manner he did before? The trouble is, it is a very deja vu period that went on far too long last time, and Ramsey himself does not seemed to have ‘learnt’ a short cut?

    As for Wilshere and Cazorla, I see a different reason for AW not playing Rosi for either. That is he is a slightly different player to both, and they have specific roles within the team. Strangely enough, if both are left out, one from injury, the other from lack of form, then Rosi has a better chance to play his own game, rather than play a ‘role of one of the other two? The team can the evolve around his style an whoever else come in. Unfortunately, I think AW will persist with Santi?

    However, I did miss one player off my list of ‘fit to play’ … Gnabry – Sorry Serge!
    This means it would be possible to play Ox in the JW role – B2B/defensive support – Gnabry playing the wide role vacated by Ox, and Rosicky doing his more thrusting style of creativity higher up the pitch. His style might well suit Alexis much better too?

    Over to you AW …

  127. TotalArsenal says:

    Some fine comments and you will see a few views reflected in the new post. 🙂

    New Post New Post!

    TIANG – YANG!

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