Arsenal v Saints Preview and Line-Up: Easiest game of the season for Emery?

Arsenal v Southampton – November 23rd, 2019

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Southampton was originally founded at St. Mary’s Church, on 21 November 1885 by members of the St. Mary’s Church of England Young Men’s Association.

St. Mary’s Y.M.A., as they were usually referred to in the local press, played most of their early games on The Common where games were frequently interrupted by pedestrians insistent on exercising their right to roam. More important matches, such as cup games, were played either at the County Cricket Ground in Northlands Road or the Antelope Cricket Ground in St Mary’s Road.

The club was originally known as St. Mary’s Young Men’s Association F.C. (usually abbreviated to “St. Mary’s Y.M.A.”) and then became simply St. Mary’s F.C. in 1887–88, before adopting the name Southampton St. Mary’s when the club joined the Southern League in 1894.

Southampton won the Southern League championship for three years running between 1897 and 1899 and again in 1901, 1903 and 1904. During this time, they moved to a newly built £10,000 stadium called The Dell, to the northwest of the city centre in 1898. Although they would spend the next 103 years there, the future was far from certain in those early days and the club had to rent the premises first before they could afford to buy the stadium in the early part of the 20th century. The club reached the first of their four FA Cup Finals in 1900. On that day, they went down 4–0 to Bury and two years later they would suffer a similar fate at the hands of Sheffield United as they were beaten 2–1 in a replay of the 1902 final.

Southampton’s home ground since 2001 has been St Mary’s Stadium, before which they were based at The Dell. The club has been nicknamed “The Saints” since its inception in 1885 due to its history as a church football team, founded as St. Mary’s Church of England Young Men’s Association, and play in red and white shirts. Southampton has a long-standing rivalry with Portsmouth due to its proximity and both cities’ respective maritime history. Matches between the two sides are known as the South Coast derby.

The club has won the FA Cup once, in 1976, and their highest-ever league finish was second in the First Division in 1983–84. Southampton was relegated from the Premier League on 15 May 2005, ending 27 successive seasons of top-division football for the club. They returned after a seven-year absence, and have played there ever since.

Arsenal have dominated in our fixtures against Southampton- the last home game that we lost was in Division 1 on February 21, 1987, 32 years ago – almost to the day.

Arsenal v Saints Div 1 Home Results
1 26-Dec-66 1 4 1
2 15-Apr-68 1 0 3
3 29-Mar-69 1 0 0
4 06-Dec-69 1 2 2
5 26-Dec-70 1 0 0
6 28-Mar-72 1 1 0
7 30-Sep-72 1 1 0
8 02-Mar-74 1 1 0
9 21-Oct-78 1 1 0
10 05-Apr-80 1 1 1
11 19-Aug-80 1 1 1
12 15-May-82 1 4 1
13 02-Apr-83 1 0 0
14 31-Dec-83 1 2 2
15 06-May-85 1 1 0
16 20-Aug-85 1 3 2
17 27-Dec-86 1 1 0
18 21-Nov-87 1 0 1
19 17-Sep-88 1 2 2
20 02-May-90 1 2 1
21 17-Nov-90 1 4 0
22 02-May-92 1 5 1
Total : 12 8 2 36 18

We have never lost to Southampton at home in the Premier League and long may this continue.

Arsenal v Saints EPL Home Results
1 20-Mar-93 1 4 3
2 25-Sep-93 1 1 0
3 24-Jan-95 1 1 1
4 23-Sep-95 1 4 2
5 04-Dec-96 1 3 1
6 31-Jan-98 1 3 0
7 17-Oct-98 1 1 1
8 26-Feb-00 1 3 1
9 02-Dec-00 1 1 0
10 02-Feb-02 1 1 1
11 07-May-03 1 6 1
12 10-Feb-04 1 2 0
13 30-Oct-04 1 2 2
14 15-Sep-12 1 6 1
15 23-Nov-13 1 2 0
16 03-Dec-14 1 1 0
17 02-Feb-16 1 0 0
18 10-Sep-16 1 2 1
19 08-Apr-18 1 3 2
20 24-Feb-19 1 2 0
Total : 15 5 0 48 17


Arsenal v Saints All Home Results
FA Cup 1 0 0 2 1
Division 1 12 8 2 36 18
Premier 15 5 0 48 17
Total : 28 13 2 86 36

We have played 43 home league games against Southampton, losing only 2; this may well be our best record against any other team – I wish I had confidence that that record would remain in tact but…………….

By GN5

TotalArsenal’s PREFERRED Line-up (not the predicted one):


87 thoughts on “Arsenal v Saints Preview and Line-Up: Easiest game of the season for Emery?

  • Thanks GN5, that is an amazing home record v the Saints. Like you I am not very confident about this game but at least club footie is back!! More tomorrow. 🙂

  • West Ham v Spuddies ……D
    Bournemouth v Wolves ….D
    Watford v Burnley ………….H
    Man Citeh v Chavs …………..H
    Granada v A Madrid ………..A
    AGF Aarhus v Brondby HF (Danish League) ….. A

  • GN5, hopefully we will have a good game against So’ton.
    The interlull is a welcome one… for the fans and players alike.
    More to write after the match.

  • GN5. Thank you for another well-researched post- If we do not take the 3 points Emery will be gone by midweek

    Much talk of Luiz in midfield. IMO this is extremely unlikely. The man has never played there and is now into his 30’s, whilst I agree he has the skillset evidence shows that some of the very best football managers in the world do not trust him there. IMO if we have to move a CB into midfield then the obvious candidate is Chambers.

    My choice of team is …

    Bellerin Sokratis Luiz Tierney
    Torreira Xhaka Guenduouzi
    Pepe Lacazette PEA

    Subs: Ozil Kola Martinelli Holding Chambers

  • Made the adjustment for you, Erik.

    Good point about Luiz in midfield and I am happy with your suggested line-up, except for not playing Ozil in the hole… We need somebody to bridge midfield and attack and have that scoring threat too. That’s Mesut for me.

  • 14.15:
    i have to admit i believe in this 3-4-1-2 … provided you ask the players to press, not to sit back, as ue did against lcity, and as adrian clarke pointed out in his latest “breakdown”
    actually, with rob for david, shkodran for papa, and granit for matteo, this would be my favourite XI
    we’ll see -,what i’ve just wrtitten does not mean i’m over-optimistic; i believe in the lads, not in the gaffer
    enjoy the game, friends

  • Just saw that myself Le Gall.
    This (bar Holding, Pepe) is our strongest lineup. Formation-wise, one of Pepe, Auba, Laca had to be sacrificed. (I’m sorry, but Xhaka isn’t in any frame of mind to be on a pitch with continuing comments I’ve been reading.)

    We may have a good effort and result– simply from Emery not leaving questions to be answered with his team selection.


  • Hey fellas… As expected, I’ve got a slow connection so my (not very strong) efforts at finding a stream aren’t heading anywhere… As such, any narrative from those watching would be much appreciated… 😀

  • But you’re not going to be pleased nht because we were asleep at the wheel on a quick restart things in alone on goal, Leno left on an island__

    1-0 to the bad guys.

  • Tierney start the attack to Ozil at MF– pushing forward with a return pass to Tierney on the flank– with a pretty line drive cross to Auba near side of goal– Auba’s shot deflects to Laca’s feet– slots it home 1-1.

  • Thanks JW… I’m following on the Arseblog too…and got the replay of the first goal… Hint of offside at the restart, or maybe Sok played them on?… Our goal should be up soon…

  • Fast and furious following james Prowse’s testicles fouling Laca’s heel– a FK taken by Ozil headed out and SH break– with Torreira taking a card at MF to halt it.

  • IMO Torriera was asleep on the restart for SH’s goal. Chambers came out to cover the ball and fouled the player. Lucas just Mustafied, er, pointed– at Ings as he blew through to goal.

  • That 2nd goal (ours) was a nice one… Guendo to Auba who touched to Ozil then ran towards goal… Ozil’s ball out wide for Tierney was the perfect weight for him to hit the cross to PEA in space. His extra touch meant his shot got blocked but Laca was quick on the rebound… Well done Arsenal but So’ton might consider actually playing a bit of D instead of just watching it all unfold…

    Of course, I’m only seeing the goals… From commentary it sounds rather end to end with the ref leaning things towards So’ton and penalizing our “professional” fouls more than theirs…

  • Chamber being given time on the ball is attempting to create little– till now a pss to Lucas– hacked down FK to be taken by Ozil or Luiz

  • Near disaster playing out from the back. Averted with help of SH’s skittish choice of crosses.

  • Nearly comical mixup places the ball at Leno’s feet tangled with Chambers– lucky– an OG was quite possible.

    Laca now booked cutting down a SH break at MF

  • Same old, same old. Fortunate to be level.
    Shots Saints 10/2 – Arsenal 3/1

    Gunners with as many bookings as shots.

  • Our passing is still iffy. And Bells started playing like Kola: too many back passes. At least Torreira played well, but we need more brains to overcome the Soton’s brawns. Looked like a rugby match to me rather than a football match.

  • I enjoyed the half. Surprised Southampton are trying to attack as I expected them to PTB.

    Our defence, as ever, looks fragile but Chambers as a 3rd CB allows Tierney to play as a winger, which he does very effectively.

    Ozil is giving one of his masterclasses. some of his touches are magical.

    Pepe on for Bellerin and we win this one.

    BTW another truly dreadful referee, No wonder our boys are getting frustrated. I can see us getting a red card for something innocuous

  • That was a tough watch. Nothing resembling an Arsenal side still, except when Ozil is on the ball (struggling to see the right movement). Auba has the arm band weighing him down or something because, he just isn’t his assured self. Bellerin is still off form and isn’t giving Chambers a good outlet.

    We are jittery. Nothing a couple of goals cannot cure, to be honest, but how to get them….? Not sure now. The Ref has been too eager to issue fouls against us and yellow cards for offences which may have been overlooked; plus, he is allowing time wasting. Southampton know they have a chance the longer it remains at 1-1. We have to be more aggressive and score the next goal.

  • Think I’m going to pass on commenting on the 2nd half.
    Just not enough worth discussing– for the amount of effort required.

    Have to hope for better. But it is– what it is– once more.


  • s’ton have had more shots on target than us – that says it all, i think
    our lads look like they’ve been un-taught football
    i just can’t see what’s guendouzi’s use – whatever our lineup might be; and i’d like a dna test to be run, just to check hector’s actually the guy in the right-back position
    i still believe in mesut-auba-laca, and i wish joe were brought in (matteo taken out) … but the disease looks to be much more serious than i’ve been aware of (while many of you, BK regulars, were), i’m afraid …

  • No 2nd half comments?… Leaving me in the dark, I guess… 😦

    I can’t say as I blame you, JW… But don’t we have them right where we want them, thinking they can attack and shoot at will… Isn’t that Emery-ball?…

  • Sorry HT.
    Even more frustrated now that we’re actually doing some attacking.
    Frustrated that Emery (the twit)– spent two weeks devising that 1st half crap– when this second half effort is, well– good thus far.

  • Papa fiddlef^cking around playing it out gives the ball away front of goal.
    Only sheer incompetence by SH keeps a gimme from being scored.

  • Ref out of his depth.
    Ings dived PEN given.

    If VAR is what it purports to be this should be waved off.

  • Saved by Leno– Ward-Prowse on the rebound.

    2-1 Soton.

    A mere touch by Tierney on the PEN.

  • Arseblog is calling it a pen, albeit a soft one… Sounds like Leno guessed right but they were quickest to the rebound…

    That play out of the back stuff maybe should’ve been the(ir) goal instead?…

  • It was super soft. I felt that Ings might have been carded for diving, but we are not losing the game exclusively because of poor umpiring however…

  • We have been terrible apart from the first 5 minutes of tis half.

    How can it be that we have such wonderful players but cannot create anything? Must have been the inspirational half-time talk from Emery.

    Now we are relying on an 18 y.o. to be our saviour!

  • The announcer mentioning extra time:
    “There will be 7 more minutes– of this.”
    Best line of the season.

  • Isn’t is 25 x 90 (plus stoppages)…of this?… We’re only in game-week 13… 😮

  • Was a shot– slightly deflected– again falls to Laca’s foot– outside of boot into the roof.

  • Typically top-shelf Emery-like effort to squeeze out the recovery of a point off of mighty, mighty, Southampton.

    So. Can we fire him now?

  • Wowsa, rescued a point… Cheers for in match comments, looking forward to some, er, deeper insights…

  • Emery knows?… Of all the matches today, Arsenal are the ONLY home team to win any points…

  • We could easily have lost that by 5. Awful finishing from Southampton meant we didn’t. We were awful, awful awful, particularly in the second half.

    Lacazette may have saved Emery for a couple of days

    I would have taken losing to day and not even being in the Europa positions if Emery is dismissed immediately.

    I guess you would too …

  • Martinelli and Willock played very well. Why not start Willock instead of Douzi?

    I feel that we might be undeserving of a draw, but apparently Willock stopped the third goal and we did well to score the equaliser. I don’t understand why we stepped up the pace only in the last 15 minutes.

    We really need to work out our plans better.

  • You may be missing the trees for the forest jk.
    You were witnessing Emery’s plans– two-weeks in the making.

  • Lucky not to be blown out– at home– to Southampton.
    Emery allowing us to be beaten by a 2-3-8 relegation club with a -18 GD– then, somehow, miraculously taking a point. There are no silver linings. Arsenal are playing at a mid-table level. Championship table.

  • If Balki Bartokomous doesn’t get sacked, Arsenal FC will get into a relegation battle.

    Not sacking The Emptyheaded One during the international break will cost us big time. Players are hoping for him to get sacked and that’s exactly how they play.

  • Funny Admir– it did look like we were dawdling on the ball in extra time– before Martinelli took aim.

  • The Guardian:
    “The lack of celebration said almost everything. Alexandre Lacazette’s second equaliser of the game, deep into injury time, had rescued Arsenal from a calamitous outcome but the forward stood virtually motionless after jabbing in Gabriel Martinelli’s cross. It did nothing to stem the boos at the end of a match in which Southampton should have put Arsenal to bed and left Unai Emery’s tenure on the brink.”

    Management are approaching this situation– as if all of us– are the stupid ones.

  • Leaving the results aside temporarily, Really depressing to see the Arsenal style of play. What do you think goes on in training? He (Emery) said that Ozil did not train hard. Is his idea of training simply running hard with no effort at playing as a team?

  • Hahaha JW1, nice one.

    When I saw the line up I knew it would be difficult. Nothing new to report other than well done Laca for the brace and Willock for his incredible clearance. The biggest question is whether the BoD have the balls to justify their salaries and make the right decisions.

  • I’m still not sure what to make of that performance. We showed no fight and seemed frightened to do the simple things…. against a team which conceded 9 goals versus Leicester City. What an anti-climax the hiring of Emery has been for our hopes of forging a title contending side, after some relative heavy spending.

    I am convinced the players want him off too and are playing to get him fired. It may be too soon for Pochettino to cross over but he’s probably the only manager who will have the motivation to get us climbing that table again.

    Just saw Chelsea give City a game and cannot help but think they will give us a shellacking, on this form. It’s just got to get better.

  • What are conditions to work as a manager in Premier League? Seriously, I might take a shot with this Arsenal team. I’d send my CV and good PP presentations, an essay on every single player and a pinky swear that I will play attacking football.

  • Eris, it looked like a rugby match out there last night. So’ton looked full of plans and used their strength and diving brains to get the better of us.

    Apparently it reminded me of the EL final. Our gameplay is absolutely shot. We were out of sorts in midfield but i must say Torreira and Ozil tried to get things working. We were iffy during pressure but Ozil and Torreira were the ones that are willing to poke their legs in. Lacazette too, but he and Auba were stranded up front. We had more of the ball, and Ozil created more chances today.

    Still a draw, but i really feel that the lads gave their all.. at least at the striking department.

  • Anyway i fear for our away game against the Canaries. They were not the same team that we played against a few seasons ago, and they played well last night.

  • But– will you play midfielders where they ought to play Admir?
    Such as– the position is named– in the middle of the field?

    If so, I’d be inclined to give you a month on your CV alone.
    (All the while promising Mikel Arteta the moon to make the trip down to London.)


  • I saw the highlights of Everton’s defeat at home to Norwich. It does not bode well for us next Sunday.

    We cannot just tweak the formation and not tweak the plan. The lads were trying hard but playing from the back and get stuck in our own half for most of the game, and passing around in circles is not what the doctor ordered. And, it never was Wenger’s plan to play from the back either.

    Wenger’s Total Football philosophy was to pass quickly out to the midfielders and keep passing until the final third, and score. Triangular passing was the order of the day. Emery’s football is to pass and pass and pass in the midfield and defence, then out wide in the final third when the opposition looks tired and whip in crosses which shorter defenders cannot clear from, and score.

    Every team in the league knows this and they put their forward players in our box, and break quickly as we do not have a strong midfield.

    If we are going to win and the players decided to stick with the way we play our football, then get rid of Emery’s plan and bring back Wenger’s plan. Only then will we start winning games and score more.

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