BFG & Nacho return | Ox & Rambo in DM pivot: Predicted Line-Up and Preview

Queens Park Rangers – Arsenal

Stumbling Block or Springboard to Showdown at Old Trafford?

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Spring must be in the air because the fixtures are coming thick and fast.  Tomorrow night, in a midweek league fixture, Arsenal travel to West London and the intimate confines of Loftus Road to take on Queens Park Rangers.

Have our opponents been watching our struggles or have they been taking the small pockets of nice weather to get a jump on their golf games?  That’s right, as Arsenal have strained to find a silver lining to the Champions League thrashing meted out by AS Monaco last Wednesday and a tepid or at least somewhat nervous 2 nil victory over Everton, QPR have done nothing.  Instead, they will have to look back to their late loss 10 days ago at relegation rival Hull City to remember what playing football is all about.

They might also, like Arsenal, have one eye on their next match, a make-up game with Capital One Cup losers, er, runners up, Tottenham.  With so many former Spurs in the QPR line-up, trying to stick it to travelers from North London might be more tempting if they’re dressed in white.

If Spurs are a cock on a ball, QPR could, right now at least, be seen as a bit of a headless fowl.  Despite the big money that owner and Formula One backer, Tony Fernandes, has poured into the club, along with the excitement of bouncing back up to the Premier League from the Championship (through the playoffs, no less), QPR are once again in a big fight to avoid relegation.  Only out of the bottom three by virtue of goal differential, they lost the coolest head in the courtroom, their manager, Harry Redknapp, citing the need for knee surgery(?!?).  As many injuries as Arsenal have endured, including ones I suspect Arsene Wenger tells his players they’ve suddenly gotten, at least our manager has never used his own injuries as an excuse to jump ship.

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Redknapp has been gone a month, and in that time QPR haven’t been miserable, losing by one goal margins vs Southampton and at Hull, but taking all the points at Sunderland.  Still, they’ve yet to attract a full-time manager who might believe they will stay up.  Caretaker Manager, Chris Ramsey, then, will likely have his work cut out for him to get his group up for these matches.  The disappointment of the late loss at Hull may be offset by the 10 days of rest, but he still faces these matches missing several key players.

Amongst those who will not suit up, Leroy Fer is a dynamic midfielder if not quite the spark plug (or lightening rod) Joey Barton represents.  Barton is serving the first of a 3 match ban for trying to “manage” a conference with the referee and several Hull players in that most recent match.   Does that mean Ramsey will opt for former Spurs Abel Taarabt and Niko Krancjar, or will he believe there could be motivation for Karl Henry and Armand Traore, both of whom played at Arsenal?  Up front he’ll surely employ Charlie Austin, the former bricklayer who has been more like a hod-carrier for the Hoops.  Not the fastest or most physically imposing center forward, Austin, nonetheless, has a poacher’s instincts and reacts without hesitation to loose balls in the box, scoring 14 goals in 23 league appearances.  With a return like that, it’s no surprise that he’s also recently made noise about being another key figure who might not be willing to stay aboard if the club sank back down to the Championship.

With the game in hand, my bet is that Ramsey is more focused on trying to keep both sets of North Londoners out and playing for every precious point he can grab.  They are reasonably strong at the back.  Former England #1 Rob Green and Rio Ferdinand bring decades of experience to the task and former Spur, Steven Caulker, is not a rookie himself.  Arsenal must beware of the center backs (and Austin) at set pieces.  Giving away needless corners or fouls in our half should be avoided.

How then will Arsenal set up for this challenge?  On such short rest surely there must be changes.  Wenger may also want to give players one final look before what could be a season-defining trip to Old Trafford.  A win or even a draw in the FA Cup Quarterfinal (setting up a replay back in North London) would set a positive tone for the remainder of the run in.  As we need a clear 3 goal win in Monaco to advance in the Champions league and sit 9 points off Chelsea in the league (they also have a game in hand), defending the FA Cup is surely our best shot at silverware.   Calling out the starting line-up for this one then becomes extremely tricky.

At the back, off a clean sheet, I think the South American axis of Ospina and Gabriel continues, but perhaps the armband is returned to our Big F**king German, Per Mertesacker; after all, those achilles tendons of Laurent Koscielny must be sore.  At the full back positions, it’s hard to drop Bellerin and Gibbs after the clean sheet, but I think it’s also tough on Nacho Monreal who, despite a few early slips on the pitch at Crystal Palace, hasn’t done enough wrong to lose his spot in the first 11.  The big question is who comes in for Francis Coquelin after our only truly defensive midfielder suffered a broken nose in the most recent match.  Tomas Rosicky and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain have played in these positions (and often subbed for one another).  Might they get a run out side by side?

Aaron Ramsey has been passed fit and it should be remembered that he went straight into the starting 11 after his last sizable layoff, helping to keep Manchester City scoreless on their home pitch.   Coquelin, however, could be fitted for a mask to protect his broken nose.  Up front, Mesut Ozil, Santi Cazorla and Alexis Sanchez have started the past 5 matches, while Olivier Giroud started the previous 4.  In that one, vs Leicester City, Theo Walcott started and scored.  Now however, he seems out of favour with the manager; and Danny Welbeck, rested vs Everton might also get a spot back.  Many were impressed by the Ox’s play in the wide right position and would like to see him right back out there.  Some will want even deeper rotation and calls for Chuba Akpom will surely be registered.

Options abound, but here is the group I predict.  

ars v qpr mar 15

(Subs: Szczesny, Chambers, Gibbs, Koscielny, Rosicky, Cazorla, Walcott)

It’s really anybody’s guess who will play.  In truth, getting the points is what really matters, and another group effort, likely built on a disciplined defensive platform as we showed vs Everton, is what’s needed most.

Can we get it?  

Who would you play and why? 

Should Wenger prioritize the league matches or do we keep our best players well rested for the match at Old Trafford?

By 17highburyterrace

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83 Responses to BFG & Nacho return | Ox & Rambo in DM pivot: Predicted Line-Up and Preview

  1. TotalArsenal says:

    Super stuff, 17ht, and great background info re the Hoops. I don’t like the thought that they are fully rested and play us at their home…. We will have to dig deep for this one.

    Back in a bit.

  2. Gerry says:

    Yes, nice one HT. I’ll be brief for once, as the eyes of hungry dogs are upon me.

    I do think that yours is a possible line up, and one AW may well favour. specially the back 4.
    The midfield is a little tricky, as Coquelin in a mask may well find his way in there?
    Up front too, is what AW may decide upon if there are no changes in the deeper area.

    I don’t think I am going to speculate too much on alternatives at this stage, as I would like to see who AW has got to pick from. The only thing I will say is up front I would like to see tricky players like Alexis and Ox staying high, rather than pacey players like Walcott and Welbeck. So if possible, my 4 attackers would be Akpom, Alexis and Ox, and prompted by Cazorla on this tight ground.
    We shall see who is in the squad, and Gnabry might make the bench, not to mention Kamara if we really want tor rest people. Lets face, if we can be strong at the back, any score upfront should seal it?
    So from my midfield and forward would be:
    Gabriel and Kamara
    Cazorla
    Ox, Alexis, Akpom

    Which relies on Kos not suffering sore tendons, Coquelin not playing in a mask, and Alexis basically goal hanging!

    Full amendment when the squad is announced, no doubt.

    Cheers

  3. steve says:

    Excellent preview HT, nice to see my negative and toxic comments from the last post didn’t knock you off your stride and you produced yet another quality piece.

    imo its time to show the kind of squad depth that makes us a top team and able to compete throughout multiple competitions with fresh legs so as many possible of the superstars who will aim to retain our trophy on Monday night rested for this one.
    Only three players remain starters and we should still have more than enough to dispatch QPR, it makes for one hell of a bench as well btw lol.
    I would want Szczesny in goal just because if anything were to happen to Ospina before the big match i think having brain fart in goal against the Mancs would just add that extra bit of “oh-shit-he’s-not-is-he-yep-he-bloody-is-what-a-twat-ness” that we could really do without between the sticks for such an important game.

    —————————Szczesny—————————-
    Chambers———BFG———Gabriel———-Monreal
    —————————-Coquelin—————————-
    —————Rosicky—————-The OX—————-
    Walcott——————Welbeck——————-Akpom

    Subs: Giroud, Sanchez, Ozil, Cazorla, Gibbs, Koscielny, Ospina
    (Its still a little early for Gnabry and Ramsey to be playing imo)

    lol in reality who the hell knows what the boss has planned, i will go with HT’s line up as a proper prediction – he’s been right so far 🙂

  4. The Cockie Monster says:

    Great stuff again, Brackets !. 😀
    I don’t want to Pigeon hole you…..as Terry will get aroused !……but you are now our regular Pre-Matcher as Beach Bod Dude is,,,well…Australian !…if he were living here, he`d have loads of time on his hands to write stuff, but the Aussies have…SUN !…which means they live a hedonistic life style known as Sheila Shagging !.
    Actually !, spring is in the air here and today I have been out side doing some Rabbit fencing in the sun. I`t has been so warm that someone popped in with a parcel to deliver and shouted to me ….” Is that Ox baby ?…..shouldn`t you be at Loftus Road ?”…..as I turned around in my tanned nakedness to reveal my older looks on a rippling body he said…..” Oh it`s you Cockie !….original place to hang a towel !…..if there`s any lead in that pencil can you sign for this parcel ! “.
    This is going to be a tough game, people talk about how hard cup games are , but against a team fighting for the EPL survival these are the toughest of games !.
    Which Arsenal will turn up who knows ?. I`d settle for brilliant or lucky Arsenal win !.
    As for the team, all I can say that if it was me……….and to tell the truth, it really is shocking that someone of my tactical genius is not Arsenal`s manager !……… then these if fit would always be in my team ……….
    Koz, Gabriel, Ozil, Ox, Alexis, Santi, Ramsey, Le Coq Bloque and any Goalie !. As you can see from that lot, it only leaves who is going to be the FB`s and no room for Giroud, but hey !, that pressing all over your face like a rash bindippers are playing just Sterling up front !.
    That is why we have a Squad, as I know the likes of Giroud ( who I rate ) and Walcott are needed when we play different horses for different courses games !…………..oh I forgot !…Wenger doesn’t play horses for courses game !.

    PS……..I have left a lot of very talented players out off my “permanent 8”, just shows how much depth we have if all fit !……If only we had a tactical genius manager !.

    Wenger Out !
    Cockie In !

  5. The Cockie Monster says:

    If Brackets keeps getting our team right, then he must be a Wenger clone !. No wonder he doesn`t know what he`s talking about and gets upset with our rants !. hahahaha

    And yes !……I could manage our team from the stress free comfort of behind the Sofa !.

  6. The Cockie Monster says:

    I shall have to keep my comments down on my respect for the Bindippers pressing game !……..otherwise Totes will accuse me of loving Brenda as well as Maureen !. hahaha

  7. The Cockie Monster says:

    Wasn`t Brenda one of Maureen`s former assistants ?…………out come the conspiracy theories !. hahaha

  8. TotalArsenal says:

    Hahahaha Cockie, you are in fine form today. 🙂

  9. TotalArsenal says:

    These three points are crucial, so I reckon our fabulous Frenchman will go for the strongest possible team, similar to 17’s.

    Possibly:

    Os
    Cham – BFG – Koz – Nacho
    Coq/Paulista?
    Theo/Ox – Ozil -,Santi – Sexy Al
    Girouffe

  10. 17highburyterrace says:

    Hey fellas…

    Yeah, I dunno about this one… I was actually pretty busy yesterday or I would’ve written more in response to the Not.Good.Enough. folks… In research, after the fact, it appears the QPR boys were down in Dubai, though (ostensably) not working on their golf games…

    Supposedly they kept it all on the practice pitches down there and now are ready for the run-in… As such, my hope is that they do “an Arsenal” and find more value in “playing the right way” than getting any points from today’s match… One would guess that they will have to mete out their “passion” over the two games and may fancy taking the points from Spurs rather than us.

    Questions from the comments…or at least responses… 😀

    Gerry, Interesting take on tricky vs pacy and the tight ground. The tight ground idea maybe influenced my pick of the CB pair (our two tallest guys)… Who is this Kamara fellow you’ve listed?

    Steve, I’m pretty sure Szcz is gonna be our Cup Keeper, which doesn’t bother me a bit, the bigger question is the CB pairing and the AW hints that our BFG is tired… Both you and Gerry mentioned Akpom, who lost his bench seat for the Everton game. I think he might get it back for ManU, but I’m less sure about tonight… Did you put Szcz in your starting group just to get a rise from 007 and do you really want to rest Ozil so that he’s ready for the Cup Match? There will be rotation tonight, I’m sure, but my hunch is that both those guys (Ospina and Messy) start–After all, they hardly do any running… 😀 In the end, and even though it will enrage many, Wenger Wisdom suggests that the league matches probably count more and three points tonight is more important than the result on Monday. Luckily, as I recall from your list of fixtures, this one is already a win for us, so I’m surprised you’re not stumping for the U-19s…What have you got against Zelalem and the new Polish kid? 😀 I’m hopeful (about tonight’s match), but doubt it will be quite so straightforward…

    Cockie, Always good to picture you w/o your fur… the image below is how I picture you and TMTH… As always you speak a lot of sense…when it comes to the footy! Enjoy the sun!

    The referee for today’s match is Kevin Friend who, IMO, is one of the “new breed” of English refs. He’s not afraid to make big calls but also allows plenty of influence from the home crowd when it comes to stopping play in the middle of the pitch. My hunch is that Arsenal will use a similar tactic as they did vs Everton and fail to go hell for leather (“show passion”) from the opening kickoff, trying instead to make the match a more technical affair. Will the Hoops be excited for a night under the lights after their hard work in Dubai or will they be thinking, “if I just could’ve finished with with a par and two bogeys I could’ve broken 80?…”

  11. Gerry says:

    Quick answers HT

    Kamara, Glen Kamara gave Alexis the run around in training, and has been with the squad for a while now. I figure him about as good as they get, as A-M-N played with the Under 18’s earlier, with Bielik and Zelalem. the latter scoring in a 5-3 victory over Leicester.

    I say him rather than a patched up Coquelin, and Ramsey can have his 20 mins at the end.
    Save Coquelin for Monday.

    I don’t think we need Giro for defensive height if GP5, Kos and Mert play?

    Agreed points matter, which is why I want a tight rear guard. Leave Cazorla to feed the front runners.

  12. 17highburyterrace says:

    Well, looks like I killed the discussion… with my picture of hairless people and pussy…cats…

    Sorry…

    TA, you’ve got mail…

  13. VCC says:

    Queens Park Rangers will win this one 5-0

    They need the points more than Arsenal. Good job their manager is not used to the EPL or they would win comfortably 7-0.

    HAHAHAHAHAH

  14. 17highburyterrace says:

    Oops, somehow my ‘puter didn’t see your comment there, Gerry…

    My hunch is that either Coquelin plays both matches (with a mask) or neither. As much as you and Steve (and others) love the youngsters from training (and watching the matches), I fear most Gooners do not want to pay the big $$ to see them play…

    Speaking of…Any (other) impressions of the young Pole (or anybody else) who seems headed for first team action?…

  15. Gerry says:

    Beilik may get a bench spot later, but not going to figure in the first team this season.

    As to Kamara. If he plays well and we get a result, nobody cares/

    However, exaqming the ‘roll call’ photo during training, I don’t think Per is playing, as he wasn’t listening to AW. Akpom was looking keen, and Chambers. Not so sure about Welbeck though.

    As for others n the fringes. No, I would say what we have now is what will see us through to the end of the season. Kamara was just a punt of mine, as he is quite useful. But he would need to be paired with Gabriel, and that does not look like it is going to happen. I just hope AW does not try and squeeze Ozil and Cazorla into the starting line up.

  16. jnyc says:

    Good preview 17.
    In my opinion, if we cant rotate on A day like this, with an over rested walcott for a slightly fatigued Alexis.. then we will never rotate, and then, what is the point of having quality like theo on the team.
    Id play theo on the left, let him cut in and shoot. Theo knows how to curl a ball to the far corner, and on the right loses this opportunity, which i think causes him to have a lot of shots saved. The left is my preference for him anyway.. that way we still have a strong goal threat even without Alexis.
    Random thoughts…..
    I hope they get a real bad ass mask for coquelin.
    Per looked so sad on the bench sunday, thats a guy who loved the club, and feels responsibility for the cause. I dont think he’s going to be too old or slow any time soon.. speed has never been his game anyway, and cbs can play almost as long as keepers if they have positioning and instinct. Also would be a great veteran back up someday, to be a steady hand when needed..

  17. TERRY MANCINI HAIR TRANSPLANT says:

    Cheers 17

    We should win this.

    Upon close observation of QPR, I have managed to spot a fatal weakness….there shit.

    They will steam into us like a drunk on the pull, and there pitch will help there strategy of misplaced passes, but it wont be enough.

    Now doubt we will struggle to get our game going. Unlike them we pass the ball to the intended target, If you look closely, most QPR players are cross eyed, However, a couple of moments of class should see us through.

    The Ghosts of the Thirties are Stirring

  18. 17highburyterrace says:

    I’ve got a sick kid at home today so blogging seems (almost) worthwhile…

    VCC, Checking your UMF picks presents a real contradiction with your comment, please explain… 😀

    Gerry, Agreed about the depth of the squad and lack of chances for the younger players…So when you suggest a Kamara (or a Hayden or an Ajayi, etc…) it’s just wishful thinking? Would you really play those guys?… I also hear what you’re saying about trying to defend with defenders and not overworking our more attacking players…

    Jnyc…There seems to be a lot of sentiment on the interweb about resting Alexis for this one. How is that done? The last time he was on the bench was for the FA cup match at Brighton, I think… (Then he had his “hamstring problem” and was left out entirely vs Villa and at Spurs.) As forlorn as Per might’ve looked vs Everton, putting Alexis on the bench seems like throwing a ball and telling your (untrained) retriever to stay put… Theo starting seems as good a shout as any. Didn’t he score very early a couple of years ago in this fixture and then we held the 1-nil for the next 90?…They might’ve already been relegated, but my memory is shaky…

    TMTH, I like it…You’ve got a way with words…No wonder the ladies cannot resist you when you turn the charm their way…

    All told, I’ve got zero idea how AW’s gonna play this one. Strong from the start, but maybe not so concerned if we have to defend? Hoops might not want too much of the ball, either… Who knows? (and who cares?…) Just grab the points, I say… 🙂

  19. VCC says:

    What happened to my war and peace comment??????????????

  20. VCC says:

    Hi Brackets……..don’t know what happened to my earlier reply?????

    But in short QPR are my second team.

    Must run, very busy.

    COYG

  21. The Cockie Monster says:

    I just had a comment disappear into the twilight zone as well !……must try again !.

  22. The Cockie Monster says:

    Just seen it, it`s awaiting moderation !….which means you lot wont see it until Total releases it !………and there was a nice Ozil stat on it !.

  23. Gerry says:

    HT – I am still waiting for the official squad news. But to answer the question. Put it like this, if there is a serious doubt about Coquelin, then yes. I would play Kamara with Gabriel.
    He is a solid 19 year old. Pretty nifty with his feet, and can tackle. Far better than the Cazorla Rosicky pairing I’ve seen mentioned, if you want a good shield in front of the back 4 that is.
    If Ramsey was fit, and you could be sure he starts off on a reasonable level, then perhaps not. But that is not guaranteed is it?
    Of course if Hayden was around we wouldn’t be having to think about it.

    In this game, if we can stop them just inside our half, and get the nifty guys to do their stuff up front, we will be fine. But if AW goes for a collection of players who like to be in the middle, we will get nowhere.

    I await the line up …

  24. The Cockie Monster says:

    Thanks Bracketman !……..let me see !…….that image reminds you of me and TMHT !……one is a bald looking accountant type who would fleece his own granny and the other is a shaven pussy !….now Terry is an accountant and a very clean domesticated one he tells me, he said he likes to cook his clients books and clean out their bank accounts !…..so tell me bastard, what one is supposed to be me !. hahaha

    Should increase his stats against a shit team tonight !……depending on which Arsenal turn up !.

  25. The Cockie Monster says:

    Just tried again and it`s in moderation again !…………anyway here`s another stat !.

  26. Gerry says:

    I see one report saying one change at the back – Kos rested
    One in midfield – Rosicky for Ox
    Others as Sunday, except Martinez on the bench?

  27. The Cockie Monster says:

    #Arsenal team to play QPR: Ospina, Bellerin, Mertesacker, Gabriel, Gibbs, Coquelin, Cazorla, Rosicky, Ozil, Alexis, Giroud

    #Arsenal subs: Martinez, Koscielny, Chambers, Ramsey, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Walcott, Welbeck

  28. The Cockie Monster says:

    No Koz !………we`re Doooooooomed !.

  29. 17highburyterrace says:

    Wowsa… 7 for 11…At least I got the CB pairing correct… Awfully strong team and attacking team, I think…

  30. The Cockie Monster says:

    Actually !…. I reckon our bench could probably beat QPR, but football is a funny old game !.

  31. The Cockie Monster says:

    I thought you were a Wenger clone !…..only 7 of 11….your rubbish !. 😆

  32. The Cockie Monster says:

    Before I relax to the comforting safety at the rear of my Sofa, I will call the boys !.

  33. TotalArsenal says:

    Big attacking team 😜 I like it a lot. Big footie evening. CoyGs

  34. 17highburyterrace says:

    Le Coq mask is pretty strong, jnyc… Lone Ranger-esque, with Sicky and/or Santi as Tonto… Everybody knows what Tonto means in Spanish, right?…

  35. James Bond says:

    QPR are wanting to play football and not park the bus, interesting .

  36. Admir says:

    @17 – do you know what Ezel means on some languages? And it sounds similar to Özil. 😀

    Welbeck and Theo will score in the second half.

  37. 17highburyterrace says:

    Ozil got called for using his Ezel on Yun?…

    Is this the Arsenal with no passion or the Arsenal who just can’t complete their passes?… Always hard for me to tell… 20 mins in and most of it in our half..

    Sicky having a nightmare out there so far…

  38. James Bond says:

    there’s no width in this team – wrong team selection .

  39. 17highburyterrace says:

    Gabby can’t let that one bounce…Austin straight to keeper, as Giroud does almost during the replay…

  40. Admir says:

    Nice attempt by our Big Handsome Frenchman Cyrano! 🙂 Some nice passing in their final third from our team.

  41. AB says:

    Evening HT. You made some great calls in the team selection tonight – went a bit off further upfield, but top calls nearer the back. We are playing pretty pants by the sound of it though.

  42. 17highburyterrace says:

    No telly, AB?… We’re definitely struggling with the passing…Overall we’re defending with some degree of comfort…Nothing coming off for Sicky, including an open volley just now… Gibbs close to finding Ollie on the cross…Width seems OK to me with the FBs…

  43. Admir says:

    BTW, 17, I had 7 out of 11 too. Kos, Walcott, Welbeck and Monreal are not in the team.

  44. AB says:

    No telly (sky anyway – I don’t do Murdock if I can help it). So following on radio and web mostly. I’m glad you feel the defence is comfortable – others have suggested more pressure (on us). Sounds like shots are coming from outside the area though.

  45. 17highburyterrace says:

    Ozil is looking good out there, but needs some of those passes returned to him… Set piece found Gabby but he heads into Giroud’s legs…

    We could use bodies in the box if Giroud drops deeper…instead of potshots from poor angles…

    Bellerin Yellow but Mert clears…

    Ospina gets a hand to a cross which almost sneaks in…

    Uh, Gabby looks hurt… Kos to come on… Looks like we need to buy a defender… 😦

  46. 17highburyterrace says:

    Austin pot shots are a lot scarier than Ollie’s…Just wide…nobody closing him down, however…

  47. 17highburyterrace says:

    Slow to stop play on the head injury from our corner…

    Santi having trouble getting into the match, but more of it is down at their end, including this stoppage, at least…

  48. 17highburyterrace says:

    Both teams might have to use a sub before HT?… or QPR to play with 10 until the break?…

    Wow…nice football, Santi shot just a hair weak and saved by Green at the end of the move…

  49. James Bond says:

    why have we lost Gabby ?

  50. Admir says:

    Well, let’s not forget QPR had a lot of rest prior to this game while we had to work a double-shift last week.

    Speaking of which, David Luiz scored against Monaco.

    Liverpool and City are ahead, Newcastle and United still without goals.

  51. 17highburyterrace says:

    HT… Gabby out with a knee problem…Doesn’t seem good…

    Alexis is drawing an instant double team with every touch…but, IMO, we’re coming into the match… QPR looking solid…First goal is the match, I fear…

  52. James Bond says:

    I d idn’t like the starting 11 , there is no width in this team at all .

    it’s a short pitch – we needed both of Welbeck and Theo if not one of them to have started today .

    sometimes his decisions do make me wonder .

    saying that, 0-0 at half time is ok – as long as we can get in Theo, Welbeck or OX on in the 2nd half, say 60 minutes ? we should be fine .

    my stream is a rubbish one and don’t know why Gabby had to be subbed .

  53. James Bond says:

    oh no, Gabby is injured ? just when he was beginning to look good and develop an understand .

    that’s bad but hopefully the lads can finish the job without him .

    well done for getting most of the team spot on @ me amigo

  54. jnyc says:

    The reason i wanted theo to start was rest for Alexis., he hasnt seemed himself lately, i dont know the answer, but i think a breather would have been common sense.. Bellerin and coquelin are standouts for me so far.. ozil with some magical touches.

  55. jnyc says:

    Great play by ospina on that tricky ball.. scary moment.

  56. James Bond says:

    CHAMPAGNE MOMENT

    West Ham 0-1 Chelsea
    Posted at 20:22
    Carl Jenkinson with a rescue job the Thunderbirds would be proud of.
    The on-loan full-back races back to slide in and rob Diego Costa just as the Spaniard is poised to pull the trigger in a one-on-one with Adrian.
    Superb defending, took the ball as clean as a whistle despite Costa’s dirty looks.

  57. 17highburyterrace says:

    Short, thin pitch = less (not more) need for pace, I would think… The manager could, however, just always be wrong… 😀

  58. James Bond says:

    What a miss!

    West Ham 0-1 Chelsea
    Posted at 20:24
    Sakho
    Diafra Sakho has parity on his forehead, but directs his free header into the turf from eight yards out.
    A horrible waste from an excellent cross from Carl Jenkinson.

    how soon can we get Jenks back to Arsenal ? 😀

  59. 17highburyterrace says:

    Bellerin has played well…Rosicky is the one who seems to be struggling, passes just not working on the pitch for him tonight…

    jnyc…Alexis hasn’t looked great, QPR are running two guys at him whenever he’s near the ball, however…Pass and run and he’ll be good…

    Kickoff…

  60. 17highburyterrace says:

    There you go, Tomas…Ozil was being yanked down. That’s a stonewall…Not called, of course…

  61. James Bond says:

    this is more like it !

  62. 17highburyterrace says:

    Karl Henry might be the guy many want at DM, after that one…Should’ve been a pen and a red…

  63. 17highburyterrace says:

    Wow…Alexis in on the 1-2 with Ollie, but then sandwiched and the chance dies… All started by Gibbs dancing around his defender…

    2nd half play seems more direct…

  64. 17highburyterrace says:

    Alexis having a struggle and the toepoke is not what the doctor ordered…

  65. 17highburyterrace says:

    GIROUD!!!!!!!!!!

  66. 17highburyterrace says:

    Slow motion on the break…and a bit of luck but nicely worked nonetheless… Alexis almost gets a 2nd after a great hook forward from Messy…Nice save Rob Green…

  67. 17highburyterrace says:

    Oooh… 1v1 with the keeper and Green smothers Alexis!!

    Am I the only one here?…

  68. Admir says:

    Let’s finish them now!

  69. 17highburyterrace says:

    REWARD… 2-nil…Alexis beats Green at the near post… WOW

  70. Admir says:

    ALEEEEEEEEEEEXIIIIIIIIIIIIIS!

  71. TotalArsenal says:

    Thanks for update, guys. Sounds like a better 2nd half.

  72. TotalArsenal says:

    Come on the Hammers and Foxes! 🙂

  73. 17highburyterrace says:

    Austin…Too much space given…Gibbs went to cover the pass!?!… 2-1 Geez..

    So much for the oles and training ground stuff…

    Crowd back in it and we’re hanging on, giving space… Gotta bend but not break, I guess…

    Sicky off, Rambo on…

  74. 17highburyterrace says:

    FT… Tough work, but job done…

  75. AB says:

    No complaints from me. Hardly champagne stuff, but job done. Onwards and upwards

  76. Admir says:

    All in all, three points are all that matters. 🙂

    Too bad Ashley Young scored a late goal for United but who cares. We are still third. Remember, third is not turd!

  77. James Bond says:

    professional job .

    3 points in the bag,

    the march continues !

    it was imperative that we won considering everyone else did .

  78. TotalArsenal says:

    So it is/ JB, the march continues. 🙂

    I am out tomorrow so no 8-Pos from me till later this week (have not seen the game either).

    Keep truckin’

  79. The Cockie Monster says:

    Bad news !………all our rivals won last night and we are only 1 point ahead of Manshafter and only 3 ahead of Bindippers and 7 ahead of The Spuds who have an easy game in hand !. We still have to play Manshafter (A) and Bindippers (H), so it could swing any way !.

    Good news !…..well it should be !…..there are 10 EPL games left to play and we have 6 at home and only 4 away !…..of course it is OGAAT !, but if we don’t get top 4 with that stat, then the knives will really be out !.
    It`s in our own hands !.

  80. Admir says:

    @TCM, let’s not forget that Manure have to play Spuds (H), Bindippers (A), Aston Villa (H), Shitty (H – and they have lost the last three Manchester derbies at the Old Toilet and six out of the last seven in the league), Chavs (A), Everton (A), West Brom (H), Palace (A), us (H) and Hull (A). They can easily lose at least three or four games. They should have lost against both us and Bindippers in the reverse fixtures but De Gea had saved them at 0:0 in both matches.

  81. The Cockie Monster says:

    Yes Adders !…,…there lies the problem, they should have lost and dropped a few points in them games and probably other games, but they didn`t because they are fcuking lucky bastards and will always get the rub of the green ( another term for being fcuking lucky bastards, so basically I`ve ( including my next words ) have called them fcuking lucky bastards four times in a row if you count always getting the rub of the green …..oops ! that’s another one !. hahaha
    Mmmm….. I suppose you`re right, that they have a hell of a run in, but I don’t want to jinx it and will keep in OGAAT mode !.
    Lets hope the fcuking lucky bastards run out of fcuking luck on Monday night !. 😀

  82. Admir says:

    Don’t worry about the Monday match, Cockers. We have beaten them in FA Cup away from home before and it was Franny Jeffers who led our attack. It will be the same on Monday – we’ll win 2:0 with goals from Welbeck and Walcott while LVG will throw a boot on Young. The poor bastard will go down two minutes before LVG make a throw.

  83. TotalArsenal says:

    New Post New Post. Geoff’s produced a fine, analytical post on the current state of tactical football. Enjoy. 😛

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