Are You Ready For Freddie?! Norwich City v Arsenal Preview

Norwich City v Arsenal – December 1st, 2019

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For only the second time in twenty five years we are in the market for a new manager.

Unai Emery managed Arsenal for only fifty one Premier League games and ended his tenure with a record of W25, D13, L13, GF91, GA70, GD21, Pts % 57.52. He left in style with this farewell letter: 

Arsenal veteran Freddie Ljungberg will lead the team on an interim basis until a new manager is named. Freddie played in 328 Premier League games for Arsenal scoring 72 goals. His first game in charge will be against Norwich City at the Canaries home ground of Carrow Road. 

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 Norwich City F.C. was formed after a meeting at the Criterion Café in Norwich on 17 June 1902 and played their first competitive match against Harwich & Parkeston, at Newmarket Road on 6 September 1902. They joined the Norfolk & Suffolk League for the 1902–03 season but, following a FA commission, the club was ousted from the amateur game in 1905, as it was deemed a professional organisation.

Later that year Norwich was elected to play in the Southern League. With increasing crowds, they were forced to leave Newmarket Road in 1908 and moved to The Nest, a disused chalk pit. The club’s original nickname was the Citizens, but this was superseded by 1907 by the more familiar Canaries after the club’s chairman (who was a keen breeder of canaries) dubbed his boys “The Canaries” and changed their strip to yellow and green. During the First World War, with football suspended and facing spiralling debts, City went into voluntary liquidation on 10 December 1917.

The club was officially reformed on 15 February 1919 – a key figure in the event was Charles Frederick Watling, future Lord Mayor of Norwich and the father of future club chairman, Geoffrey Watling. When, in May 1920, the Football League formed a third Division, Norwich joined the Third Division for the following season. Their first league fixture, against Plymouth Argyle, on 28 August 1920, ended in a 1–1 draw. The club went on to endure a mediocre decade, finishing no higher than eighth but no lower than 18th. The following decade proved more successful for the club with a club-record victory, 10–2, over Coventry City and promotion as champions to the Second Division in the 1933–34 season under the management of Tom Parker.

Norwich held a slight edge over us in Division 1.

Arsenal v Norwich Division 1 Away Results
    W D L GF GA Pts
1 23-Sep-72     1 2 3 0
2 15-Sep-73 1     4 0 3
3 07-Feb-76     1 1 3 0
4 25-Aug-76 1     3 1 3
5 24-Sep-77     1 0 1 0
6 09-Dec-78   1   0 0 1
7 02-Apr-80     1 1 2 0
8 21-Mar-81   1   1 1 1
9 20-Apr-83     1 1 3 0
10 02-Jan-84   1   1 1 1
11 26-Dec-84     1 0 1 0
12 13-Dec-86   1   1 1 1
13 14-Nov-87 1     4 2 3
14 10-Dec-88   1   0 0 1
15 05-May-90   1   2 2 1
16 23-Mar-91   1   0 0 1
17 08-Apr-92 1     3 1 3
Total : 4 7 6 24 22 19

But during the Premier League years we held the edge over Norwich.

Arsenal v Norwich Premier League Away Results
  W D L GF GA Pts
1 03-Mar-93   1   1 1 1
2 13-Feb-94   1   1 1 1
3 10-Sep-94   1   0 0 1
4 28-Aug-04 1     3 1 3
5 19-Nov-11 1     2 1 3
6 20-Oct-12     1 0 1 0
7 11-May-14 1     2 0 3
8 29-Nov-15   1   1 1 1
9 01-Dec-19            
Total : 3 4 1 10 6 13

Our overall League record at Carrow Road is almost even with Arsenal only beating Norwich on goals scored.

Arsenal v Norwich All Away Results
  W D L GF GA Pts
Division 1 4 7 6 24 22 19
Premier 3 4 1 10 6 13
Total : 7 11 7 34 28 32

Norwich EPL home games 2019/20

Norwich City 3–1 Newcastle United
Norwich City 2–3 Chelsea
Norwich City 3–2 Manchester City
Norwich City 1–5 Aston Villa
Norwich City 1–3 Manchester United
Norwich City 0–2 Watford

Norwich has a spotty home game record of W2, L4, GF10, GA16. They narrowly lost 2-3 to Chelsea and followed that by beating Man City 3-2.

Arsenal is now a team in total transition, what can we expect? Freddie displayed energy and fire as a player and that needs to be transmitted to the team.

I’m hopeful for a positive rebound effect and I look forward to only our second away win of the season, the first occurred on the opening day at Newcastle in a 0-1 victory.

By GN5







19 thoughts on “Are You Ready For Freddie?! Norwich City v Arsenal Preview

  • Superb stuff, GN5. I can sense the renewed energy you got from the dismissal of UE in the content of the post.

    I lived for quite a few years, in three stints, in that sleepy but fine city and they do like their football. There is a calm, pleasant acceptance that the team will be in and out of the PL but they will always have passionate, entertaining football. Given their home results until now we can expect a topsy-turvy game and I am sure Freddie will want to join in the fun as long as he can take three precious points home with him. It will be good to see how he will set up the team and how the boys will apply themselves.

  • GN5, your optimism comes through in the post and is infectious. With Freddie having had only a couple of training sessions since the sack of his former boss, it may be too soon to assume he has put his stamp on the team; we would know more by the next weekend of games in the league.

    If he wants my counsel, just play an attacking formation and let the players play to their strengths, without inhibitions. We may play out from the back/keeper, but not as a “hard and fast” rule. Leno should be allowed to use his discretion to play out (including some training ground routines to make Arsenal goal kicks a dangerous prospect for opposition, as corner kicks were during the days of Henry, Vieira and Bergkamp).

    A win tomorrow will be such a huge boost for the club and players and it will be pleasant if Freddie pulls it off.

  • I was going to ask why no Team preview until I saw your pre-emotive Rejoinder, TA.

    My team will be one with some solidity at the back and fluidity in midfield and attack


    Chambers ———Mustafi ——-Luiz ————-Tierney

    Torreira ——————-Xhaka


    Pepe ——————Laca —————————Auba

    Auba to tuck in at times, to allow Tierney burst forward on those runs. Pepe to only tuck in when we are without the ball, lending support to Ozil for the press.

  • Your historical recaps and analyses are a staple I look forward to reading GN5– thanks again!

    Think Freddie is closer than most might think in being able to affect the team’s style on Sunday. Bits I’ve read expressed that RedFred had been managing incognito in the early cup matches when the lineups were dominated by his former youth charges. Looking back? Those were the matches we all looked forward to seeing– wondering how the efforts differed so vastly just days apart from the PL ones. So this one– I’ve got a good vibe about the Norwich tilt.

    Norwich looked solid at Everton (2-0) last weekend– holding a 1-nil lead until an extra-time tally sealed the 3pts. Tough challenge for– hmm… what to tag Freddie in the interim? The MiddleMan?

    Hope his Gunners gift the MiddleMan all 3pts– as December’s festivities loom large after.


  • Here’s a team news update from our medical department ahead of Sunday’s match against Norwich City.

    David Luiz
    Bruised ribs. Sustained during the Eintracht Frankfurt (h) match on Thursday. Being assessed ahead of Sunday’s match.

    Shkodran Mustafi
    Bruised left foot. Sustained during the Eintracht Frankfurt (h) match on Thursday. Being assessed ahead of Sunday’s match.

    Hector Bellerin
    Tight hamstring. Being assessed ahead of Sunday’s match.

    Sead Kolasinac
    Missed Southampton (h) and Eintracht Frankfurt (h) with slight hamstring issue. Now available for selection.

    Dani Ceballos
    Left hamstring. Sustained during the Vitoria SC (a) match on November 6. Aiming to return to full training mid-December.

    Copyright 2019 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to as the source.

  • Freddie Ljungberg has spoken for the first time after being named as our interim head coach.

    The Invincible led first-team training on Friday and is now preparing to take charge of the side against Norwich at Carrow Road on Sunday afternoon.

    We sat down with Freddie this morning at Arsenal Training Centre – and this is what he said:

    on what it means to him to lead the team…
    It’s a great, great honour. I want to do as well as I can for this fantastic club and that’s what I feel today. I feel excitement and I’ll try to do a good job.

    on his meeting with the players yesterday and what his message was…
    No, I think what I say in the dressing room always stays there. But in general terms, I think we have some great players and of course we’ve had some problems. We haven’t had some results and that’s what we’ve got to try to address. But how we address that, I’ll probably keep to myself.

    on whether he will be animated on the sidelines…
    Yes, of course. I think I get involved in the game. That’s who I am. But at the same time, I try to step back and analyse the games. So it depends a little bit, so it can be a calm man or it can be a not-so-calm man. It depends!

    on who will be assisting him…
    That’s something I will work on a little bit and we’ll let you know when we feel we’re ready.

    on whether he has interest in a more permanent tenure…
    For the moment it’s for the future of the football club. I’m here to help the club as much as I possibly can and try to get a good atmosphere around the club and with the supporters and that’s what I’m focusing on at the moment and then we’ll see.

    on his experience in the Bundesliga with Wolfsburg…
    That every manager is different. Different teams, different things and different ways to handle players, exercises and what they think is important and how their plan thinks. So for me, all those things are just learning points and that’s what I’ve been trying to do, in my coaching life at least. To get points here and there and of course Bundesliga has a different football, so then you learn what the culture is from that country and what they think is important. It’s just ‘knowledge in the bank’.

    on what his priorities are and what changes he will make…
    Of course small things will change. I’m not going to do anything radical because I don’t think that’s the best thing to do. I’m not going to just go and smash things up. But I’m quite clear with what I think I want to try. At the same time, we have one training session until the game tomorrow so we have to be intelligent with what you try to change because it needs to stick as well.

    on how he would you describe his approach to the game…
    I’ve been at Arsenal for a long, long, long time, I like entertaining football but of course at the same time you can’t concede goals. That’s a tricky balance to find. For me, happy footballers play the best football. That’s a part I learnt as a player, there is a time to work hard but at the same time we need to enjoy what we’re doing. Often the players we have enjoy playing offensive football which makes them happy.

    on whether his under-23 team scoring 48 goals in 22 games tells us about his style of coaching…
    We looked in 2019 at some stats as well, I remember we kept a clean sheet in five games out of nine, as well, so we tried to defend as well, there are different ways of doing it.

    on whether his experience of playing for the club will help him now…
    There’s a game tomorrow, I hope I have the values of the club, I understand the club, I think from the inside. That gives me a help, 100 per cent. I have been here for 20 years, so it’s very special to me. That’s why I’m saying it’s an honour to do this. When the club asked me to help them of course I said that’s a given, I will try to help them as much as they need. We will see from there.

    on what his message to the Arsenal fans is…
    They are amazing fans, they are. We need them and the players need them. That’s the main thing that I can say to them. We as players and coaching staff will do everything we can to make them happy, just enjoy the game.

    on how confident he is about restoring a positive feeling around the club…
    Of course I am confident, otherwise I wouldn’t have taken it when they asked me to help. If I didn’t feel I could help them I wouldn’t have done it, so of course I am confident in that way. I really feel that this club can all be brought together and put some smiles on to people’s faces again.

    Copyright 2019 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to as the source.
    Pre-Match Report

  • Morning all, thanks for the comments.

    I’m really hopeful that this is a new dawn for the Arsenal and that Freddie is a success, being a former member of the Invincible team makes him a highly respected individual who the players should respect and look up to.

  • Thanks for that TEAM NEWS update there, GN5. There goes half of my predicted back 4 then…. unless….

  • Careful with those line-spaces Eris. 😱
    If using a word processor to compose– there is generally hidden code that is affecting the visual layout of your lineups. Try using a plain text editor — then cut/paste here.


  • Good stuff GN5. Great piece of history.

    As for Freddie and his players, i will reserve comment until after the match tonight.

  • Thanks, jw1. I wonder if one can find time for that “double effort” thing. Next time, I shall just write my team list in a line. 😀

  • A Very Red & White Season…

    🎄 🎄 🎄 🎄 🎄 🎄

    A very Merry Christmas–
    And a Happy New Year.
    Let’s hope it’s a good one–
    Without any fear…

    Less fear. Go bold picking the lineup. Picking one and sticking with it. Allowing that lineup to familiarize playing as a unit. Developing roles.

    Mesut Ozil. Mesut is back.
    If MÖ10 can provide the sublime– the attack will flourish. Let our best creator create. Plan the attack to flow through #10. Freddie must be salivating at the prospect of match-planning, as he’d supposedly done in early cup games this season. Those lineups played so differently from those on the weekends. So, so hoping. 🙏🏻

    Game time here– is 8am. Amped-up that I am, feeling like Xmas came early.
    Best gift I could have wished for.

    And so this is Christmas–
    I hope you have fun.
    The near and the dear ones–
    The old and the young.



  • hhahahaha JW, that is a very early Christmas greeting! But why not? it is below freezing here and everything is covered in an icy crust whilst the sun is shining to lighten it all up, so it feels right somehow! Love the positivity too.

  • And behind Freddie will be BFG, the space reader. The current hierarchy seem to think much of him. Wenger thought very highly of him too. He combines a good understanding of football with good PR. Certainly a future Arsenal manager.

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